Feb 27, 2012

spiff up a stylish home - guest post by Artistic Homeowner

Guests are coming for dinner at the last minute. You just remembered the book club is meeting at your house tonight. Your sister-in-law is stopping by for lunch. Whatever the reason, you need to tidy up the house- and quickly. No worries! Here are some easy tips to tackle midweek clutter in a snap.

Tidying up the Living Room

Gather up things that have collected during the week and are out of place- sneakers, hoodies, magazines, newspapers, etc. Toss them into a laundry basket and stow away in a closet for the time being. Quickly put remotes, DVDs, and CDs back where they belong. 

Fluff up sofa cushions and pillows, fold throw blankets.

Run a dust cloth over end tables, coffee tables and lamps. Do a quick once over on floors and rugs with the vacuum.

Tidying up the Bathroom

Empty the bathroom garbage. Clear the counter of makeup, toothbrushes, contact lens holders, deodorants, etc. and stow in a small basket under the sink. Remove any newspapers, magazines, and reading material.

You can scrub later, but for now- it's all in the wipe. wipe out the sink, wipe the faucet and mirror, wipe the toilet seat and rim. 
Freshen the toilet bowl with a squirt of toilet bowl cleaner or mouthwash and a 20 second swish around. 

Toss damp towels and washcloths into the laundry, add fresh hand towels. Open a fresh bar of hand soap. Give the bathroom a spray with room freshener.

Tidying up the Kitchen

Clear away homework, papers, cell phone chargers, change and other clutter and stash in a cupboard. Attack dust, crumbs, and dried jelly on the counter tops and kitchen table with a damp sponge or disinfecting wipe. 
Load up the dishwasher with glasses, dirty dishes, silverware, even pots and pans. Place dish soap, brillo pads, sponges and kitchen gloves under the sink.

Close all counter drawers and cupboard doors. Straighten up kitchen chairs. Clean smudges off the refrigerator doors and windows with cleaner. Quickly sweep or dust mop the floors. Give the rugs a shake outdoors. 

Tidying up the Bedrooms

Toss anything laying around on the floor into laundry baskets and load into the closet. Make the bed, fluff up the pillows.

Do a five minute vacuum. Crack a window 2 inches to let in some fresh air.
A quick note to moms of tweens or teens- a teenage bedroom may be far beyond the scope of a mid-week spiff up. If your teen's room is beyond help, simply close the door and pretend it isn't there. ;)

High five, lady, you did it! You transformed your cluttered mid-week house in a jiffy. Now light a scented candle and put on the coffee- you have guests coming!

Bio: ArtisticHomeowner.com sells 1000s of beautiful wall murals.  Find one that is just right for your spiffed up house!

Feb 26, 2012

gowns from Oscars past

The Oscars are tonight!! 

I love the fact that my entire afternoon 
is going to consist of watching the stars on the red carpet
 and looking at all of their amazing dresses. 
I can't wait to see what they are going to wear!

So to celebrate my happiness over watching
gorgeous gowns I thought I would post some pictures
of gowns from Oscars past. 

Are you ready?!
Mila Kunis looked lovely in a soft lavender
 Elie Saab gown on the red carpet in 2011.
Jennifer Hudson showed off her hard work of getting thin
and in shape in a stunning orange Atelier Versace dress in 2011.
P.S. the bright and lush citrus colors are very much in!
Who can forget Rachel McAdams in 2010?!
She was a vision in a Elie Saab's soft, 
watercolor floral gown. I LOVE this dress!!
In a color that's similar to Rachel's gown, Elizabeth Banks
wears a Versace tulle dress in 2010.
The lavender color is simply stunning.
 Sarah Jessica Parker went for a unique
look in a Chanel Haute Couture dress in 2010.
Amy Adams looked bold and beautiful
 in a green Proenza Schouler in 2008.
 Kate Winslet wore a YSL Atelier one-shouldered gown in 2009.
Minty green! {Which I am in love with right now.}
This minty green Valentino dress made
 Kate Winslet look lovely in 2007.
Another beautiful summer color -
Michelle Williams wore a Vera Wang dress in 2006.
 I love Cate Blanchett and she looks lovely
 in this glistening Valentino dress in 2005.
Kate Hudson wore an elegant Versace dress in 2004.
Who can forget Grace Kelly in 1954?! 
She's so graceful and gorgeous.
And just to throw in some eye candy - Zac Effron
always makes me swoon, especially in this
Calvin Klein suit that he wore in 2011.

Have fun watching The Academy Awards tonight!

Who are you looking forward 
to seeing on the red carpet?

I can't wait to see Rachel McAdams, and many others!

Feb 17, 2012

Hollywood Regency - my source of interior inspiration

Happy Friday Ocean Dreamers!
I'm going to make this quick since it's way past my bedtime...
Ever since I became aware that the theme I 
adore (after many pins on Pinterest),
 is called Hollywood Regency
I've been obsessed ever since. 
Everyone needs a bit of Hollywood Glam
in their lives, right? I think so and when 
I finally have a place with BK
 I'm going to use Hollywood Regency
as my source of interior design inspiration.

These pics from Pinterest are proof
as to why I love this style as much as I do.
Click on each picture and it will take you to its source. ;)

Have a regal weekend!
I'm definitely going too. I think when I'm feeling up to it
I shall go shopping, watch a movie or two,
and treat myself to some yummy food!

Feb 15, 2012

your happiness within yourself - guest post by Bellaisa

Want to find love? If you haven't found yourself yet, then finding yourself should be your top priority! I have seen many people who get into serious relationships before they really know who they are, and I have also seen a lot of heartache and anger in the relationships and with themselves because of this.

There are two main reasons that you need to find yourself before you find love.

Your Happiness with Yourself

The most important reason is because you are going to be with YOU for the rest of your life, and you should know yourself and love yourself if you want to be truly happy in life.

We often think that in order to be happy we need to find love, but that’s not true. If that was the case then everyone in love would be happy! We all know that there are many people who have found love but are still not happy!

It's much easier to find yourself without the distraction of a partner. You can focus on figuring out your likes and beliefs, and focus on figuring out where you want to be in life, all without having to compromise with someone else and base your decisions around what they want as well.

My best friend got married at a very young age. She had no idea who she was yet, but she knew who her parents wanted her to be! She ended up becoming an unhappy person in an unhappy marriage, and it wasn't until 12 years later that she got out of the marriage and started to figure out who she really was.

At the present she is still in that process, when she really should just be growing happier every day. She can't be happier every passing day because she is not happy yet. Her life has been full of what other people want her to be and she has no idea where the real her lies in all of that mess.

So, find yourself before you find love. You want to really find out who you are and get a sense of what direction you are going, and start moving in that direction. Your happiness will thank you!

Your Happiness with Your Partner

If you haven't found yourself yet then how can you know what kind of person is really going to be a good fit for your life? How do you know who is going to be someone who will want to go in the same direction as you or end up in the same place as you?

When you know who you are and what you stand for you can look for someone who fits that idea as well. Instead of saying "I don't want someone who does this or this or that" you will have a good idea of what you DO want, and that will be what you end up looking for and finding.

When you find love with someone who relates to you and gets you there really is nothing better. They understand where you are coming from and the support you in getting to where you want to be. They don't put down your ideas, beliefs, or feelings because they understand them and support them.

When you have found yourself and know who you are, it’s really easy to see the people that would compliment you and your life, as well as to spot the people that would just make you miserable. And of course it's easy to avoid the people that make you miserable because you will not allow that into your happy life!

So, if you are single and looking to find love, then take some time to really find yourself first. The short time that it takes to figure out who you are may result in a long time of happiness with yourself and your partner that wouldn’t be there if you didn't find yourself first. It's worth the effort and the short wait in the long run.

About the Author: Bellaisa gives out relationship advice for women and men, including how to find love. Get her new FREE eBook titled - 45 Things to Do To Keep Your Relationship Alive by clicking here.

Feb 13, 2012

Adele and her crazy passion for life

Hi Ocean Dreamers,

I hope you all had a great weekend!
Thanks for your thoughtful comments in regards to my last post.
It is always very much appreciated. :)

A few hours ago I got done watching the Grammys and
besides the beautiful tribute to Whitney Houston that almost
left me in tears, I couldn't help but be super happy for Adele.
About a year ago I had no idea who Adele was.
At first I admit I didn't even like her music.
But then, I started listening to a few songs and
slowly became addicted. And now, just like every
other person...I've fallen in love with her music,
her bubbly personality, and her crazy passion for life.
Plus have you heard her laugh?! Infectious!

Watching her on the Grammys just confirmed my
intense like for this fiery young woman.
Plus - how admirable that she came back after almost
losing her voice all together!
Thank goodness for modern medicine and a God
who heals an angel's voice when he sees and hears one.
Not only does Adele have a voice of an angel, but
her vintage style is lovely and so is she.
She's as beautiful as her voice, inside and out.
Oh, and can you believe that she's only 23?! 
This is the only picture I could find of her
where I think she looks more like 23 verses 33.
Here are some stunning pictures of Adele.
I'll start off with a few pictures from VOGUE.
{side note...LOVE that she has a doxie.}

Sigh. Love her voice. LOVE HER.

What do you think of Adele?
How can you not love her?!

Feb 10, 2012

one sided friendships

Do you ever get the feeling that you're stuck in a one sided friendship?
I admit I've been in this place before and every time it happens
I have to ask myself - what went wrong?
Just like romantic relationships friendships sometimes go sour.
You may have developed different interests, gotten hurt 
over some trivial matter, or developed jealousy that 
eventually tore the friendship a part. 

There's a fine line in friendship. Unfortunately the more
you get burned the more you hurt, and the more you hurt
the harder it is to trust. 

I try to not get myself into a situation where I confront a friend,
asking them if I did something wrong or letting them know that
something they did hurt me. 
The reason why is that you don't know how they will respond.
Will they respond in earnest or will they attack you?
What did I do wrong you will ask yourself.

Some people like to call this drama, I like to call this honesty.
Yes, there are many trivial matters that should be let go of.
But - there are also times that the air needs to be cleared,
otherwise things can eat you alive. 
I find if you can't let something go, then it's time to let this
person know. If they can't handle your honesty
(in kindness of course), then they were never 
a "safe friend" to go to, to begin with.
Plus it often means that they're looking for an escape route.
Real friends these days are few and far between.
I'm fortunate to have a few good friends.
But - I'm okay with just having a few. 
It does however hurt when I find myself in a one sided
friendship yet again. Oh those are never fun.
I used to feel like I needed many friends and I admit that
I still fall into this popularity trap occasionally.

But, do you know what this comes down to?
The need to be loved.
We all want to be loved and adored.
Even by our friends. If a friend backs off for some
reason and you find yourself missing their company - 
do you confront them or let it go?
This is a question I often ask myself.
All I know is that the older I get, the harder
friendships are to maintain.
How much do I push to keep a friend or should
I be pushing at all if I even feel the need to push?

What is the point when something turns into the cliche 
phrase that I have begun to hate - "DRAMA."
Sure, girls are the worst. We love to analyze things to death.
I am guilty of this. But - if I do clarify with a friend I only
want to repair the damage or misunderstanding that has taken place.

A few more thoughts on one sided friendships.
I think their needs to be a change in our society.
Friendships should not be superficial.
They should be genuine and lovely.
If a friendship is not this then perhaps this is
the wrong friend for you.

Sometimes I wish that friendships were easier.
Wouldn't life be nice if you could hold a sign
that says - "friendship for hire?"
Or...as this picture says,
I'm lonely...Will you be my friend?
I'm going to stop trying to force certain friendships.
I'm going to be confident in myself that I am a good friend
and that if a friend cares, they'll want to make
the effort to spend time with me
as much as I want to spend time with them.

Of course I'm not perfect either.
 There's always ways to improve on being a better friend.
But it's important to not get caught being the only friend that's trying
to make something work.
Two way street...

That's not too difficult, right?!
I wish this was so.