Tag Archives: free

Link Love: 27

rp_Link-Love-1024x102411111111-1024x10241-1024x1024-1024x10241-1024x10241-1024x10241-1024x1024-1024x10241-1024x10241-1024x1024-1024x10241-1024x10241-1024x10241-1024x1024.jpg The web has been a little sparse this week, or maybe I just have been too busy with other things to notice… Here’s what I found interesting this week:

This documentary on minimalism looks both beautiful and inspiring.

Two college students built a tiny home for $500.

These peel and stick “tiles” are a great idea for a camper or Airstream.

A peek into this guy’s “van life.” It looks pretty rad.

The 10 best bargains at drug stores.

Scandalous ways to get free stuff.

A nice debt calculator with actionable items to get out of debt quickly.

These all-natural chocolate chunk, nut butter blondies look like the perfect Valentine’s treat.

What you can say instead of “I don’t feel like it.”

On February 15th, I’m starting Whole30. Eeek and ugh? I’m looking to this post for budget-conscious ideas.

It’s almost Valentine’s Day! Have you waited until the last minute? Me too. Maybe this free printable will help. Also, my mama’s famous chocolate chip banana bread makes a great gift too!

See you on the flip side!

love,
melanie

 

30 Free (or Cheap) Things To Do This Holiday Season

Photo c/o Death to Stock Photos.

Photo c/o Death to Stock Photos.

Whether we’re ready or not the holiday season is upon us. But with all the gift-giving and party-attending, your wallet might be hurtin’. Mine is too, friend. So this holiday season I’m looking for cheap ways to celebrate the holidays. Here’s some of my favorites free or cheap things to do this holiday season.

  1. Bake cookies.
  2. Make ornaments (Pinterest has some great ideas!).
  3. Make and send holiday cards.
  4. Make gifts for your loved ones.
  5. Rock out to holiday tunes.
  6. Snuggle up with a good book (get it from your local library!).
  7. Snuggle up with a loved one (or your pet!).
  8. Pop popcorn and watch a holiday movie (there’s plenty of free ones on Hulu!).
  9. Sip on some cider (or cocoa!).
  10. If it’s cold enough, make a snowman. If not, play outside! You need that vitamin D, even in the winter.
  11. Visit a neighbor.
  12. Catch up with old friends.
  13. Make dinner for a friend or someone in need.
  14. Break out your Crock-Pot and try a new recipe.
  15. Eat dinner by candlelight.
  16. Do a good deed.
  17. Volunteer.
  18. Learn a new skill (may I suggest knitting?!).
  19. Decorate your home with homemade decorations (may I suggest coffee filter snowflakes?).
  20. Drive around and look at the holiday lights.
  21. Throw a holiday soiree (To keep costs down, ask guests to bring a dish or appetizer!).
  22. Check out free location-specific things to do in your area (Simply Google “holiday activities” and your town name.).
  23. Start a new tradition (Bonus points if you make it a bit wacky!).
  24. Get your spring cleaning out of the way now!
  25. The holidays can be tough sometimes, find little ways to pamper yourself at home. Give yourself a manicure or make a DIY face mask.
  26. Roast marshmallows (You can even do roast marshmallows indoors with this fancy gadget.).
  27. Stay in your pajamas all day.
  28. Break out the board games (Sorry! I’m not sorry!).
  29. Document the holiday season by taking pictures or journaling.
  30. Just relax and enjoy the holiday season!

What are your favorite free or cheap things to do this holiday season? Let me know in the comments!

love,
melanie

Please note, the above post contains affiliate links. By clicking on the links and buying the product, I receive a small commission. The opinions about the products are my own. Programs like this help to keep my blog running. Thank you for your support!

Frugal Friday: 101 Free or Cheap Things to Do This Fall

rp_101-free-or-cheap-things-to-do-this-fall-1024x679.jpg So you guys, this is a total cop-out. I totally jumped the gun on the fall thing and published this post way too early, but you know what? I’m posting it again because this week homegirl is tired. And now it really feels like fall. Here we go again, ya’ll.

This post was originally published in July of 2014.

“You guys. Fall is almost here. Target has put out their insanely large, insanely cute display of Back to School supplies. I’m trying desperately to stay away from it. I’m also preparing to teach a course this fall. So crazy. Feel free to refer to me as “professor.”

I’m also still on this saving money kick, but it hasn’t been much fun. I’m the kind of person who needs something to look forward to– like a trip! Since a trip is out of my budgetary reach and the summer is almost over (boo!), I created a list of free or cheap things to do this fall. I hope it will keep my spirits up, give me me something to look forward to and maybe even get you inspired and excited for fall?!

  1. Set some fun fall goals
  2. Donate school supplies to a child in need
  3. Volunteer
  4. Donate your gently-used winter coats to someone in need
  5. Enroll in a class at your local community college
  6. Take a hike
  7. Admire the foliage
  8. Sprinkle pumpkin pie spice in your morning coffee
  9. Get up early to admire the sunrise
  10. Learn to knit!
  11. Get an early start on making Holiday gifts
  12. Host a pot-luck Friendsgiving (a Thanksgiving with friends)
  13. Put pumpkin in everything!
  14. Visit a pumpkin patch (or do what my mom did and tell us we are visiting a pumpkin patch, but really just go to the grocery store and play on the pumpkin display)
  15. Go on a hay ride
  16. Visit a corn maze
  17. Carve pumpkins
  18. Don’t forget to roast the seeds!
  19. Rake the leaves
  20. Jump in the leaves!
  21. Winterize your home (or your Airstream!)
  22. Visit the library and check out Autumn-themed books
  23. Bake a pumpkin pie
  24. Share the pie with your neighbor
  25. Camp in your own backyard
  26. Chop wood
  27. Find the perfect walking stick
  28. Build a fire pit
  29. Make hobo packets
  30. Roast marshmallows
  31. Tell ghost stories
  32. Enjoy a pumpkin beer
  33. Go on a bike ride
  34. Go on a fall-themed picnic
  35. Learn to can vegetables
  36. Plant winter veggies
  37. Or plant bulbs for next spring
  38. Do lots of autumn-themed crafts
  39. Donate or sell the summer clothing that you didn’t wear
  40. Pear down your winter wardrobe
  41. Host a clothing swap
  42. Or swap online on Swapdom
  43. Sell your wares at a flea market
  44. Go apple picking
  45. Bob for apples
  46. Make candy apples
  47. Learn to make apple cider or jam
  48. Pop popcorn and drizzle it in caramel
  49. Drink hot apple cider
  50. Drink hot chocolate
  51. Break out your crock-pot
  52. Make pumpkin chili!
  53. Don’t forget the cornbread!
  54. Eat your weight in fall veggies– squash and Brussels sprouts and cabbage, oh my!
  55. Get excited for fall fashion
  56. Break out the flannel
  57. Pull on those wool socks
  58. Don’t worry about bad hair days, just put on a beanie!
  59. If you are a lady, pull on those thick tights (and don’t worry about shaving your legs!)
  60. If you are a dude, grow a beard!
  61. Cuddle up in your oldest sweatshirt
  62. Wrap up in warm blankets
  63. Watch It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
  64. And A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
  65. Go to bed earlier
  66. Visit the fair or a fall festival (save money with these tips)
  67. Host a Halloween party
  68. Make your own Halloween costume and challenge yourself to use only stuff you can find around the house
  69. Dress up your pet!
  70. Craft creepy snacks like this Slimer Smoothie
  71. DIY candy
  72. Watch your favorite scary movie with a friend
  73. Read scary stories under the cover with a flashlight
  74. Listen to the Halloween station on Pandora
  75. Make spiced nuts
  76. Slurp on some soup and grill up an old-fashioned grilled cheese sandwich
  77. Make beeswax candles
  78. Discover your local farmer’s market
  79. Slowly sip a cup of hot tea
  80. Pretend that you like candy corn
  81. Discover the real meaning of Thanksgiving
  82. Be more grateful by creating a gratitude journal
  83. Make turkey hands! They’re still fun, even when you’re almost 30!
  84. Simply sit outside and enjoy the cool weather
  85. Join a local foraging group and forage for wild edibles
  86. Make acorn soup
  87. Or mushroom soup from the forage
  88. Make real cranberry sauce and put it on french toast!
  89. Pour maple syrup on everything!
  90. Enjoy the Harvest Moon on September 8th
  91. Invite your friends over and create fall-themed cocktails
  92. Make a pine cone bird feeder and keep those birds fed all winter
  93. Paint your nails an autumn-colored hue
  94. Celebrate Dia de Los Muertos and honor your deceased loved ones
  95. Break out the board games and your favorite jammies
  96. Give your mum some mums!
  97. Attend a high school football game
  98. Join a sports program for adults
  99. Participate in a zombie crawl
  100. Or a Turkey Trot for charity
  101. Take lots of pictures to document your memories!

Are you ready for fall? I’m feeling a little more ready and hopeful after this list.

What are your favorite fall-themed free activities? Let me know in the comments!

love,
melanie

 

101 Free Or Cheap Things To Do This Fall

101 free or cheap things to do this fall You guys. Fall is almost here. Target has put out their insanely large, insanely cute display of Back to School supplies. I’m trying desperately to stay away from it. I’m also preparing to teach a course this fall. So crazy. Feel free to refer to me as “professor.”

I’m also still on this saving money kick, but it hasn’t been much fun. I’m the kind of person who needs something to look forward to– like a trip! Since a trip is out of my budgetary reach and the summer is almost over (boo!), I created a list of free or cheap things to do this fall. I hope it will keep my spirits up, give me me something to look forward to and maybe even get you inspired and excited for fall?!

  1. Set some fun fall goals
  2. Donate school supplies to a child in need
  3. Volunteer
  4. Donate your gently-used winter coats to someone in need
  5. Enroll in a class at your local community college
  6. Take a hike
  7. Admire the foliage
  8. Sprinkle pumpkin pie spice in your morning coffee
  9. Get up early to admire the sunrise
  10. Learn to knit!
  11. Get an early start on making Holiday gifts
  12. Host a pot-luck Friendsgiving (a Thanksgiving with friends)
  13. Put pumpkin in everything!
  14. Visit a pumpkin patch (or do what my mom did and tell us we are visiting a pumpkin patch, but really just go to the grocery store and play on the pumpkin display)
  15. Go on a hay ride
  16. Visit a corn maze
  17. Carve pumpkins
  18. Don’t forget to roast the seeds!
  19. Rake the leaves
  20. Jump in the leaves!
  21. Winterize your home (or your Airstream!)
  22. Visit the library and check out Autumn-themed books
  23. Bake a pumpkin pie
  24. Share the pie with your neighbor
  25. Camp in your own backyard
  26. Chop wood
  27. Find the perfect walking stick
  28. Build a fire pit
  29. Make hobo packets
  30. Roast marshmallows
  31. Tell ghost stories
  32. Enjoy a pumpkin beer
  33. Go on a bike ride
  34. Go on a fall-themed picnic
  35. Learn to can vegetables
  36. Plant winter veggies
  37. Or plant bulbs for next spring
  38. Do lots of autumn-themed crafts
  39. Donate or sell the summer clothing that you didn’t wear
  40. Pear down your winter wardrobe
  41. Host a clothing swap
  42. Or swap online on Swapdom
  43. Sell your wares at a flea market
  44. Go apple picking
  45. Bob for apples
  46. Make candy apples
  47. Learn to make apple cider or jam
  48. Pop popcorn and drizzle it in caramel
  49. Drink hot apple cider
  50. Drink hot chocolate
  51. Break out your crock-pot
  52. Make pumpkin chili!
  53. Don’t forget the cornbread!
  54. Eat your weight in fall veggies– squash and Brussels sprouts and cabbage, oh my!
  55. Get excited for fall fashion
  56. Break out the flannel
  57. Pull on those wool socks
  58. Don’t worry about bad hair days, just put on a beanie!
  59. If you are a lady, pull on those thick tights (and don’t worry about shaving your legs!)
  60. If you are a dude, grow a beard!
  61. Cuddle up in your oldest sweatshirt
  62. Wrap up in warm blankets
  63. Watch It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
  64. And A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
  65. Go to bed earlier
  66. Visit the fair or a fall festival (save money with these tips)
  67. Host a Halloween party
  68. Make your own Halloween costume and challenge yourself to use only stuff you can find around the house
  69. Dress up your pet!
  70. Craft creepy snacks like this Slimer Smoothie
  71. DIY candy
  72. Watch your favorite scary movie with a friend
  73. Read scary stories under the cover with a flashlight
  74. Listen to the Halloween station on Pandora
  75. Make spiced nuts
  76. Slurp on some soup and grill up an old-fashioned grilled cheese sandwich
  77. Make beeswax candles
  78. Discover your local farmer’s market
  79. Slowly sip a cup of hot tea
  80. Pretend that you like candy corn
  81. Discover the real meaning of Thanksgiving
  82. Be more grateful by creating a gratitude journal
  83. Make turkey hands! They’re still fun, even when you’re almost 30!
  84. Simply sit outside and enjoy the cool weather
  85. Join a local foraging group and forage for wild edibles
  86. Make acorn soup
  87. Or mushroom soup from the forage
  88. Make real cranberry sauce and put it on french toast!
  89. Pour maple syrup on everything!
  90. Enjoy the Harvest Moon on September 8th
  91. Invite your friends over and create fall-themed cocktails
  92. Make a pine cone bird feeder and keep those birds fed all winter
  93. Paint your nails an autumn-colored hue
  94. Celebrate Dia de Los Muertos and honor your deceased loved ones
  95. Break out the board games and your favorite jammies
  96. Give your mum some mums!
  97. Attend a high school football game
  98. Join a sports program for adults
  99. Participate in a zombie crawl
  100. Or a Turkey Trot for charity
  101. Take lots of pictures to document your memories!

Are you ready for fall? I’m feeling a little more ready and hopeful after this list.

What are your favorite fall-themed free activities? Let me know in the comments!

love,
melanie

Love Weekends: The Too Long Hike

hiking

Can you believe this is an iPhone picture?

I’ve taken a liken to hiking. Which is crazy because if you told me even a year ago that I would like walking through the woods, I would have thought you had lost your damn mind. But I’ve figured out that just walking through the woods burns an insane amount of calories and I also get to see some pretty beautiful sites. And the best part about hiking is that it is free!

On Saturday, it was completely gorgeous outside so George and I decided to take a hike through a local park. We had hiked there before and had good experiences, but we always like to try to take new routes. This time we took a trail and a half through the woods to see an old mill. For a fairly inexperienced hiker like me, it was a little too much. At one point, I was ready for George to leave me in the hollow of a tree and go home on his own. And the worst part was that the mill was so anti-climactic. I mean, just check out the picture below.

the old mill

All that is left of the mill.

We saw some beautiful sites on the way, but I am apparently not shape for a 12 mile hike which seemed mostly uphill. I thought at one point we I might have a Naked and Afraid situation. I am seriously bad at peeing outside.

burger wrapped in lettuce

The hike was so traumatic that we decided to reward ourselves with a burger from a local restaurant with rave reviews (Only Burger). They even wrapped the burger in lettuce for me!

airstream1
On Sunday, we went to our local flea market to peruse the wares and puttered around the house. I love the Airstream, but man, I hate doing dishes in there. It sure does look pretty out there surrounded by green though, doesn’t it?

How was your weekend? Let me know in the comments!

love,
melanie

What do YOU want from Love Library? A Reader’s Survey

Reporting to duty!

Your willing and able blog host reporting for duty!

 

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about where I want to take this blog. And if I’m being honest, I’ve been thinking a lot about the direction of my life too. I’ve got some major life changes coming up– good ones I think– and I’ve had to put on my big girl pants more than once these past couple of weeks and woman up.

Which leads me to this question… What do you all want from this blog? I need sage advice from my loyal and beautiful readers. I’m by no means a professional blogger and some days I struggle with things like:

  • Topics – are there topics (specific or general) you’d like covered in the coming months?
  • Types of Posts – DIY, recipes, books, fashion, personal stuff…. have your say about what you like most/least
  • Posting Frequency – too many posts, not enough, just right?
  • Design – I am planning a blog redesign this summer – so your comments and ideas would be helpful at this point
  • Blog Features – what would make your reader experience better?
  • Community – Are there features that you’d like added to help connect more? Do you feel connected to me?
  • Services and Tools – what could I offer you to help you improve your life?
  • What Frustrates You about  Love Library? What is Best about it?
  • Other Ideas and Feedback – anything goes, big or little.

This list was heavily created from this post on Problogger.

Please leave your answers to one or all questions in the comments. I will leave the survey up indefinitely, but I will offer up the prize of a free book to one lucky, randomly selected commenter on Wednesday, May 1, 2013. The winner can be a previous winner and does not have to be a citizen of the U.S.A.

Please help me improve!

love always,
melanie