Excuses excuses…another use for a placemat!

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Hi!

Sometimes one Goodwill purchase begets another.

Am I right?

Not that I ever ever ever need an excuse to go to a Goodwill and look around, but I had an excuse the other day when I decided that I am actually not going to be painting the armoire I found just yet (soon, I swear), and so am in need of a cloth type thing to cover the top with.

So I walked in the store, not sure where I would look for said cloth type thing first, but smartly walked back to the linen section.

sometimes that thing taking up space in my head comes up with some pretty good ideas.

Pillowcase?

Some cool patterns…but may be kinda weird.

Place mat?

Yes!  Ding ding!

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 A place mat would be the perfect size for the center of the top of the bureau.  And look at these place mats galore!  All ready to beautify my somewhat in need of love armoire at home.

I narrowed it to a few patterns, and then I thought about gathering a crowd and maybe turning it into an American Idol vote type situation on which would be the winner.  People could pick favorites and each week we could narrow it down by one.  And some of the placemats would get to visit Hollywood….fun,

But then I just decided to pick one, and this made the final cut:

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0.99 each

It’s like two for the price of one.  The front and back have different patterns.  So my ADD self can switch it up when I get bored.  Soon.  .

I felt a little bad buying just ONE that I needed, as they were ALL neatly put together in groups of 4.  I didn’t want to tear a family apart…some family of four is going to come along and love this pattern and think, who’s not gonna have a place for their crumbs every night?  Not Jimmy.  He’s too messy.  Can’t be katie, she’s scared of bare tables…guess we’ll just have to leave these placemats here.

Sad story.

 But they were priced individually, so I was technically allowed to buy just one if I wanted…

so I settled on two.  At least I didn’t split the children up.

 The armoire has a big top, so I could easily use a second if I needed.  And for .99 a piece, why not?

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Already in use.  I conveniently have two other Goodwill pieces of decor in the picture as well.  You may recognize them.

Not like it was that hard.  Pretty much all of the decor I have is Goodwill.

I ended up using the second placemat to put on one of my other dressers that also needed some love.  I’ll let them visit each other every now and then, don’t worry.

It was Sunday when I went dresser topping shopping; the day that the color of the previous week is going on last chance sale for .99  an item, before they go meet their fate at the Outlet store.

So I couldn’t help but look around.

And on one of the .99 racks in the center aisle of the store was this:

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Black Beauty.  Cotton stretch dress by Charming Charlies, size M, for 0.99.

i had thought of charming charlies as only a jewelry store.  but then again i have never actually walked inside.  quite clearly, they sell clothes.  and now i own one of them.  for much cheaper than they would like I’m sure.

And it fits!

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hugging my curves in all the right places! 

On the way from the dressing room to the register I happened upon this discarded item in the children’s section-

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This low waisted flower covered black flowy skirt with pockets.  By No Strings Attached for $4.49. 

did you notice it has all my favorite adjectives?  Flowy.  Flower.  Low Waisted.  except one of course…black. <:/

Remember, black is only OK because it is COVERED IN FLOWERS.  🙂  Only time I will allow it.

All in all an hour well spent at Goodwill.  My armoire and my body will now be better dressed.

Thanks for stopping by and happy thrifting trails to you!!

Jaime

Do you find you need an excuse to go thrifting or is the thrill of the hunt enough of an excuse for ya?

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Jackpot…decisions need to be made

This past Saturday I finally had time to make a stop into my local Goodwill in East Nashville, and spent a good hour perusing and was happily happily rewarded.

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Look at that cart full of lovely patterns and color combinations galore.  Old Navy and Forever 21 and Target among them.

And I thought I had found a lot/done well at this point.

Little did I know.

Cut to a half hour later.

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And this is what my cart looked like.  Just a few more items 😉

Full of stripes and flowers and colors even more galore.

I think I set a personal record for most items of clothing tried on in one visit.  Possibly.  It’s hard to tell.  There are several other very close seconds I know.

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‘Yes’s’ to the left, ‘No’s’ to the right.

I said this in the dressing room to myself and the Bob Dylan song “clowns to the left of me, joker’s to the right…” popped into my head.    Now you can all sing “Stuck in the middle with you” for the rest of the day.  You’re welcome.

Luckily, most of the dressing room ‘no’s’ were easy decisions to make due to fit, etc.  I only had to turn a few down because of grownup things like cost and and just maybe not really completely needing another shirt.. dress.. shoe..what have you…. 😦

Now for some closeups…

This is one of the yes’s… turned a no…

the decision had to be made.

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One too many ruffles was the deciding factor.

Although I was very excited to find a lovely blue form fitting dress for $7.99 because I am trying to stear away from always wearing loose hippy type clothing, and MAYBE show off the figure I work so hard to keep for once…

But the ruffles were a bit excessive.  And I had to leave it behind.  To the right of the dressing room it went.

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Yes, yes, yes all over this outfit.

top by a.n.n.a. for $4.49.  Flowy.  Wow, what a surprise.  Who cares.  Love.

NY&Co. dark leggins jeans, with a zipper and button so they’re not completely jeggings I don’t think, my size, my style, $7.99.  To my house they go.

A girl needs to keep her skinny jeans in stock if she insists on keeping her tops as big and flowy as possible.  It’s all about balance.

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Keeping it casual in a loose fitting striped tee.

I can’t remember the brand, but it was also 4.49.  I wore it to the dog park that day.

I like it better with white shorts, but I’d have to be crazy to wear white shorts to a dog park.  Crazy.

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Flowery short sleeve peasant blouse by Converse for Target, $4.49.  With a tie in the back to cinch the waist.

I wore it to an outdoor movie night in East Nashville the following night.

The movie pick was Raising Arizona with Nicolas Cage and John Goodman amongh others.  I wasn’t excited about it but wanted to go anyway.

I. Loved. It.

So quirky and weird and awesome (exactly how I described it to my bf when he asked how it was).  Don’t know how I went so long without it in my life.

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Me and my girlfriend’s dog, Lady.  Sorry about the blur.  It happens.

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My friend Christina and I completely engrossed in the picture.  (No, my eyes are not closed- it was the flash 🙂

Such a fun night.  Perfect weather.  Food trucks, local beer (Jackalope), movie outside while lying on blankets with friends and dogs.  Bliss!

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Can’t forget the homegoods section.

Glass beaded candle, $1.99.

I’m moving in with my friend this weekend, and I think this will match her (our) decor very well.

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All my finds together.  $34 total.  Not horrible at all.

Not included in a close-up:

Striped gray tee v-neck by Vintage, $4.49.

Pink Pashmina scarf, $1.99.

And square baking pan, $1.99.  Gotta keep those baked goods on hand to help me fill out those skinny jeans!:)  Don’t think that just comes natural! Haha.

I made butterscotch brownies in them that very day…and then remade them the next day as I failed the first time.

If at first you don’t succeed, try, and try again!

And I did.

And I will.

That’s what life is about!

Thanks for stopping by, please come again, and leave a comment or two or three!

-Jaime

Floweraholics Anonymous

Hi.  My name is Jaime.  And I am addicted to flowers.

The first step is ackowledgement they say.

But how am I supposed to kick it if Goodwill keeps providing me with such lovely flowered cover things??

For so cheap??

I don’t know, but its best just not to fight it, I think.

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Small hanging canvas, .99.  Priced on the spot.  Reasonably:)

Is it not the cutest thing ever??? I ’bout had a heart attack when I picked it up.

This is known as a GBISHA- the ‘Goodwill bargain induced shock heart attack’.

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Standing Photo album/frame, $2.99.

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Hanging Jewelry Organizer, $.99!! The cheapest I have seen them is $9.99.  Anywhere.

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Little blue flowery journal, for my songwriting ways, $.99.

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Three mason jars, $.49 each,

used to make tealight on water candle holders like this:

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So pretty!?

Tealights were $2 for 20 at Family Dollar, one of my other favorite places to shop.

They have candles like this on the bar top where I work, and I loved it so much I wanted to copy it at my house.  I knew Goodwill has mason jars a lot, so I popped over to get these, and found them along with all my other great items as well.

Pretty simple:

Just fill the mason jar with water.  Place the tealight on top.

Immediate pretty and romantic ambience.

What I DIDN’T take home:

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This awesome Mossimo from Target (donated, not purchased from Target by Goodwill) striped boatneck pocket shirt for $4.49.

Why you ask?

This:
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Normally, I would buy the shirt/item, get home, and notice the indiscretion.  Somehow I noticed it before I purchased it this time and couldn’t bring myself to buy it.  For the best I guess.  $4.49 more in my pocket.

A GREAT day at Goodwill, I’d say.  I love all my items so much, and do not care how flowery or feminine they are.  I am flowery and feminine and am proud of it.  I may have to change my decor ways someday when I get married…but we’ll see.

Until then….

Thanks for stopping by!

Go out and support your local Goodwills and thrift stores!  They do great work!  (For both our closets, homes, and society 😉

-Jaime

IKEA meets Goodwill

Hi.

I have come to bring you my long awaited furniture post (by who, I’m not sure, but I have promised it for a couple weeks now:-).

As you all may know, I recently moved across the country (ok, half way across, but really whats the difference??), and I like to keep it simple sweet always with furniture and moving- I buy cheap, sell cheap or give away or leave (thanks mom and old roommates :-x) wherever I am coming from or going to.  Goodwill, Tag Sales (yard sales as apparently I’ve learned most people call them at least in the South) and Craigslist play a big part in making this possible for me.  I have moved several times after selling all and buying completely new stuff, for either a minor financial loss, or sometimes even making a profit.  And this way I am able to move only in my civic and not have to pay movers or rent one of those UHaul thingies I’ve heard so much about.  I wouldn’t trust myself to drive that anyway.

So this time was no different, as I gave away my dresser, bookshelf, sold my bed last time I moved from here, I couldn’t just take all that stuff back.  And I left all my newish furniture at my Mother’s in CT, so I got here with nada.

No worries.

Goodwill to the rescue.

My first purchase was an awesome condition black full size futon that folds in two different ways (up into a couch, and also into a chaise lounge style- I have yet to use it that way as it is my bed), for $40.  A steal in my opinion.  It is one where the cushion is attached, making it even better to use as a bed.  And in my four weeks on it so far, I have slept well each night.

Sorry, no pictures of that piece 😦

Secondly, a couple weeks later, and the same day I found my lovely concert shirt at Goodwill, I was also hoping to find a nightstand and/or a coffee table set.

I found a coffee table set.

I love when I go into Goodwill looking specifically for certain things, and find them.  Both of them.  In the same day.  Blows my mind.  And makes me happy.  It proves that it is not just a place for strolling casually to see what treasures you come upon that you never knew you could never again live without.  Get it? 🙂  Although I like when that happens too.  Most people feel that way when they meet me…:)

Just saying.  Haha.

You have already seen the geometric shirt perfect for the Awolnation concert I didn’t get to go to:( and now I will show you my coffee and end table set in perfect condition from IKEA- aka furniture heaven and/or headache heaven, whichever you prefer.

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There they are.

IKEA Coffee and End Table set, $40 total

I guess $40 was the magic number from the Universe for my furniture purchases this time around, becasue this WHOLE set was a mere $40 as well.  That makes $80 total for a bed, effectively, and a living room set.  I got my couch free from my awesome friend who just moved to Austin, TX two days after I arrived in Nashville.  Thank you, Universe.

Also, I’m sure it has been shared in a past post becuase it is from Goodwill for $4, but the awesome yellow patch quilt is from the Charlotte Pike Goodwill in Nashville, TN within the past year and a half.  I also found the same quilt in black that same day:)  Who knew Goodwill had color selection?

And I couldn’t leave without sharing my dresser with you.  It’s not from Goodwill, but its just too cool of a story not to share.

I was out one saturday morning perusing local thrifts for a dresser or five to house my more than is ever appropriate collection of clothing (partly due to my Goodwill addiction), and was on my way home empty handed when I saw this on the side of the road:

(–> image uncompatible, can’t upload.  😦  I don’t know why, it is the same format as all my other pictures, but I am not going to argue with such a bold statement.)

So I will describe it:  It is a turqoise shabby chic (read: messily) painted approximately 4′ tall 5 drawer dresser that puts a storage dent in my clothing collection and makes my room very happy.

Above it I have hanging my small wall art canvas of a green tree I purchased at Goodwill about two years ago and still love.  It and the dresser go very well together.

You may have heard me mention before of my love of bright colors.  I think turquoise falls nicely into this love.  So who better to pick this up than me?  Well, it turns out technically the guy giving it away was better to pick it up and lift it in into my car than measly old me…but I did a pretty good job of a driving away with it sticking out of my trunk and driving over the railroad tracks to my casa.

Happy car, happy Jaime.

Addendum: You can see a picture of the dresser in this later post, Lady in White.  🙂  You’re welcome.

Valentine’s Day Surprise and Cheesecake

Disclaimer: This find IS NOT my own.

K, I’m glad we got that out of the way.

But it was given to me by the One who was half responsible for making me aka my MOM.  So it counts.  And it’s hanging in my room now too along with my other lovely things.

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My mom (and anyone else who talks to me for five minutes) knows that I love flowers and music.  Not necessarily in that order.  Safe to say 3/4 of my clothing probably have flowers on it, as well as my hoome decor.  I am not ashamed or scared to admit that fact.  Yes, I am also 29 years old.  Not six or seven like the kids in the classroom that I work in.  I think it would be safe to say I would have been a ‘flower’ child had I lived in that decade.  Well, maybe.  I’m not so sure about the lifestyle, just the title.

Anyway, I digress.  In addition to flowers, I love music.  I have played piano since I was 5, and sang for even longer.  Suffice to say it is beyond my passion, and I just spent three years in Nashville trying to make it my career.  Another self plug- you can hear a couple of my songs at www.reverbnation.com/jaimenelson.  I hope you enjoy.

So the mother of all mothers saw this frame, while looking for Valentine’s gifts for my wonderful nieces and nephew, her grandchildren (crazy how I made that connection, huh???I know) and added it to her pile to leave waiting for me Valentine’s Day morning.

What a lady.  Who needs a boyfriend?

Well, that may be a stretch…I take that back.  I would like one.  For sure.

I really do love this canvas though, so pretty.

And I just realized, it has a THIRD thing that I love.  Fancy writing in a foreign language (French??).  Making me have absolutely no idea what it is saying, but I can only assume it is something beautiful and heartwarming.

It could be saying, “you suck” for all I know.

But it sure looks nice.

I hope you all had a beautiful Valentine’s Day.  I assume you are all the type of people that don’t get hung up on the fact of having or not having a ‘boyfriend’ to share the day with.  There are so many wonderful types of love in the world to celebrate on such a day to be depressed over not having just one specific kind.

Make yourself a cake,

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as I did, and move on.  How can you be sad with this in your life???

Looks delicious, right??  Well, it was.  Raspberry white chocolate cheesecake with chocolate wafer crust.  All of those words should not be in the same title.  Too much goodness.  But its not.  It’s heavenly and perfect.

Here is the ‘quick’ recipe:

Crust:

2 cups chocolate cookie crushed mixed with 6 T melted buttteerrrrrr yummm

Raspberry swirl:

2 T cornstarch, 2 T sugar, 1/2 water, and 10 oz frozen raspberries brought to a boil together in a saucepan for 5 minutes until thick.

White chocolate mix:

Melt 2 cups white chocolate chips with 1/2 cup half and half or heavy cream etc in a double boiler

Cheesecake!!!!:

3 packages cream cheese softened, 3 eggs, 1/2 cup sugar.  Mix this with a blender on high speed, then mix in the white chocolate mixture.

Layer the cream cheese mixture over the crust with 3 drops of 1 T. each of the raspberry swirl twice and then swirl it with a knife all pretty like.

Bake in a 9″ springform pan at 325 for 50-60 minutes.  Open the door and turn off the oven when it’s set on the edges and let it cool in the oven so the top doesn’t crack (too much).

Cool a couple hours and enjoooyyy!!!  I did.  It is delicious.

Lastly, I would like to give a shoutout to some viewers I had the other day all around the world:

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The world is so big and yet so small!!  I love that no matter how far apart we are, and different cultures we live in, we share a similar bond and interest.

Happy thrifting and living!  Please share with me your finds and stories:)  I’d love to hear.

-Jaime

“Life is too short not to spend it smiling.”

Purses, Khakis and Home Decor for the soul…

Purses, khakis and home decor for the soul….

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Awesome wooden purse with top metal clasp, $6.99

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 New from Target Mossimo fun pinkish red khakis with belt and tags, $4.99

(that light follows me around…you’ll notice)

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J. Crew wide leg flat front khakis, perfect condition, $7.99

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Large framed flower Wall Art, $20

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Retro diner statement wall art, $9.99

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Mint Condition Vera Bradley quilted purse, $17.99

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Find of the year…Computer table (slash excess of jewelry and hat table in my house….), $12.99.

I did not purchase either one of the purses, but thought I should still share with you what amazing stuff you can find there.  The wood purse is truly one of a kind being all solid wood, and such a nice pattern engraved all over the outside, for only $6.99.  The Vera Bradley is a steal as well, as her purses start at $50 and up.   I already have this same exact purse (thanks Mom) in another pattern, so didn’t really feel spending $18 on another was completely necessary.

I love my new pink khakis.  There is really not much more I can say about that.  I’ve worn them two days in a row, the first two days that I owned them, and they are now in the wash.  I would like to point out that the lovely J.Crew blue striped blouse I am wearing with them I purchased, not at Goodwill, but at Savers, another thrift store (I do shop elsewhere) for $4.99.  The whole outfit was under $10.00.

Speaking of ‘ol J.Crew, I also love my J.Crew khakis.  When will you ever find J.Crew khakis for $7.99??  Such a good deal.  I especially loved when I found these because I had just gotten a job at a school and felt I needed more than just jeans to wear, so I went to Goodwill looking specifically for khakis and slacks, rather than perusing the aisles for whatever treasures I can find.  And I found these that could not have been more perfect for what I was looking for.  Goodwill wins again.

Need to redecorate or decorate for the first time?  Goodwill has ya!  These two pieces, both very different, are awesome!  Just like the purses, I did not get either one because I am about to get a roommate and I am not sure exactly what her tastes are yet or what kind of art she even needs.  But I would have gone for the retro diner shot if I had because…A) It’s the cheaper one B) It’s the more fun one:)

I DID, however, buy. this. desk. $12.99!!! Are you joking??  Goodwill sometimes doesn’t quite hit the mark in it’s pricing.  Sometimes it is in your favor and sometimes not.  This price, $12.99 for a dark mahogany computer desk with a working sliding drawer, was definitely a price miss, and in my favor.  If there hadn’t been three of the same price tag on it, I would have assumed a stray price tag had landed on it.  But it didn’t, and now I am super organized and productive now that I have it…I mean, I will be:)  It’s only been two days.  And it is very nice that my computer (and hats and bracelets) now has a place to call home, in addition to my bed and the floor.  It is no longer in danger of being sleepily stepped on in the morning.  Happy day for him.  My computer is a male apparently….

So happy with all my finds lately!! I hope you enjoyed looking at them!

Are you a treasure hunter, or do you go thrifting on a mission looking for something specific each time?  I am very impressed if you do!

Happy thrifting,

-Jaime

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