School’s Out, Play is IN: Summer Playtime On-The-Go!

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Love this solution for on-the-go play! These LEGO toys will go everywhere your kids do: the pool, roadtrips, vacations, restaurants, picnics-- plus they store easily in a carrying case. BRILLIANT.

We are full-on, all-out LEGO maniacs over here in the Lemonade house lately. LEGO is a brand in which I don't hesitate to invest because I know this isn’t a short-lived stage. It’s a screen-free activity that promotes imagination, sharing, and creativity that BOTH my kids (girl and boy) adore. LEGO bricks are classics! The routine this summer has been that the kids wake up and head downstairs and play quietly with their LEGO sets for a good hour before we make them get ready for the day. … [Read more...]

Favorite Natural Beauty Products

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I never knew how many terrible chemicals were in traditional beauty products; try these natural alternatives instead!

I seriously get sick to my stomach thinking about all the things I used to smear on my skin, which just so happens to be your body's largest organ (and absorbs everything that touches it like a sponge!)  Products that contain harmful chemicals such as parabens, phylates, and FD&C color and pigments-- many of which have been linked to cancers and other horrible afflictions. And I would put these toxins ALL OVER MY FREAKING SKIN. I'm so thankful I started making the switch to natural … [Read more...]

Salted Caramel S’Mores Recipe… yes, I went there.

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The perfect summer dessert gets an upgrade: how to make Salted Caramel S'Mores, on the grill!

Yes, I went there-- I jumped aboard the salted caramel bandwagon and came up with a grilled S'mores recipe that will knock your socks off. Because S'mores. And Salted Caramel. And grilling season. Seriously, does life get better than this? In mere minutes you can put a few simple ingredients together and come up with the dessert that most epitomizes summer campfires, gatherings, and BBQs.  Plus I figured out how to make S'mores on the grill for those of us who don't have access to a firepit. … [Read more...]

How to Hang Outdoor String Lights (The Deck Diaries, Part 3)

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How to hang outdoor lights WITHOUT walls! What an easy and inexpensive way to add magic to your deck or patio.

There's something about the glow of strings lights that can make even the most ordinary space feel magical. Doesn't it make your heart skip a beat when you see them? Plus the glow is incredibly flattering, so I can't be held responsible for what magic may happen when you install these outdoor patio and deck lights at home. What? You don't have enough walls to hang them outdoors? Pshhhh, no worries! Here's an EASY (duh, it's me) and CHEAP (of course) way to hang string lights on your deck, patio, … [Read more...]

Vertical Herb Garden Update (The Deck Diaries, Part 2)

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What a great way to create a vertical herb container garden on your patio or deck, green thumb not required!

You guys, you know it's time to stop blogging at midnight when you spell diaries as 'dairies', right? And it took me an entire 24 hours to realize I'd done it on my last post about staining the deck. Someone needs to revoke my blogging license. ;-) Anywho, a few years ago I did a little post about how to create a vertical herb garden on the deck, right outside our kitchen doors.  Each summer we've continued to plant our vertical container garden and use the herbs in our cooking all summer long! … [Read more...]

Deck Stain 101 & The Perfect Outdoor Couch (Deck Diaries, Part 1)

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Wow, a tutorial on how to stain a deck took this old deck from scary to looking like a resort! I WANT this in my house!

Okay, I can't tell you HOW DARN EXCITED I am to kick off The Deck Dairies today! You may remember our deck was showing a lot of wear and tear after such a brutal winter.   Those winter weary brains of ours decided to create a 'vacation at home' feel on our deck to truly enjoy outdoor living this summer (because as much as we love vacations, we can't go on them forever).  Our dream was to bring a resort feel to our home, minus the resort fees. BUT. We can't spend any more on our home so we had … [Read more...]

Essential Oils Housewarming Gift Basket Ideas

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Oooooh, I want someone to make this Young Living housewarming gift basket with essential oil gift ideas for me too. Great ideas for using essential oils around your home!

One of my favorite ways to use essential oils is around my home-- to clean, cook with, and make my home smell like a spa. Which got me thinking about what I'd give to someone who is moving to a new home.  It's hard to put together the perfect housewarming gift these days: food is fun but with all the various special diets out there it can be tricky; candles are pretty but hello allergies; soaps and cleaners are handy but yikes, chemicals! Don't worry, I've got your back-- here's an allergy … [Read more...]

Simple Tip for Quickly Cleaning Vinyl Fences (and Outdoor Furniture)

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The BEST tip for quickly and safely cleaning vinyl fences (and plastic furniture), no elbow grease required! Who knew it was this easy?!

Hey hey! Summer is here and we're in MASSIVE outdoor cleaning mode! Next week I'm sharing our new deck makeover (eeek! can't wait!), but today I wanted to let you in on a little secret I discovered. You see, I had been dreading cleaning our vinyl fence. Occasionally I've hosed it down but the mildew and dirt started to build up and I envisioned hours of elbow grease to scrub it off. After 4 years of ignoring it, I finally got into my scrubby clothes and pulled out every cleaning product I had to … [Read more...]

7 Popular Yard Sale Items That Sell Like Crazy!

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These 7 popular yard sale items are selling like crazy! Do you have any in your home? Check out what they are so you can mention them in your ads as well as put them in prime locations at your sale!

We are in MAJOR cleaning mode around here and gearing up for our bi-annual yard sale. Looking over the (massive) garage sale pile it occurred to me there's several popular items that almost always sell quickly. These make great items to advertise in your online garage sale ads as well as strategically place to attract buyers to your sale.  They also do really well in the online yard sale groups that have popped up all over Facebook. Here's 7 popular yard sale items that seem to sell like … [Read more...]

Best Places to Eat in Charleston, South Carolina

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The best restaurants in Charleston, South Carolina-- known for it's incredible food and Low Country cooking, here's the 'must' list of where to eat and drink in Charleston, SC!

There's plenty to love about Charleston, South Carolina-- the history, the shopping, and the sightseeing to name a few. But let's be real, the reason I fell in love with this city that adores bacon and smells like pralines is THE FOOD. Charleston is an eating (and drinking) city, a place where it's best to pack your 'pancake eating pants' because you may leave with a little extra baggage then when you arrived. In a city with so many dining choices, finding the best restaurants can be … [Read more...]

The Perfect Summer Reading List (25 Must Read Books!)

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The perfect summer reading list-- 25 must read books this summer! Perfect for beach, pool, airplane, and snuggled in bed reading way past your bedtime.

  RELAX, I'm not ordering you to read 25 books this summer (though, if you want to, by all means use this title as an excuse!) However, knowing the diverse ranges of most people's reading preferences, I wanted to provide a list of the 25 best books I will personally be reading this summer-- with some wiggle room that includes a few classic favorites, controversial picks, and the much-loved beach reads. Truth be told, this list is paralyzing to me. I've written summer reading lists the past few … [Read more...]

20 End of Year Teacher Gifts (That They’ll Use and Love!)

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20 End of Year Teacher Gifts (That They'll Actually Use!)

Today marked the last day of school for my youngest kiddo, a bittersweet day for sure. My mom always sent in a plant for the teacher on the last day of school, and I've handed down the tradition to my kids too. My friend B. gave me the great idea of using an Anthropologie mug and filling it with goodies (she does personalized M&Ms, genius!) So I purchased mugs for the teachers and had my kids pick out the flowers to place inside. This simple idea was a hit, so I thought I'd share 20 other … [Read more...]

DIY LEGO Minifigure Jars

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Check out these DIY LEGO minifigure jars-- SUCH a cute idea for LEGO party decorations, favors, or toy storage! Love these!

We are in full-on end of school year overdrive around here... birthdays, graduations, teacher gifts, sports, picnics like WOAH!  This super busy time of year also happens to be my son's birthday so he tends to get the Pinterest-inspired-birthday-party-shaft. I usually throw a few trains in a bowl and call it a day. But he loves little details like choosing party favors and such, so I wanted a few special touches for his LEGO birthday party. Walking through Target, I picked up a box of Ball … [Read more...]

Garage Organization (Tools, Bikes, and Rakes oh my!)

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Great tips and ideas for organizing your garage once and for all!

We have finally gotten serious about organizing the garage. Or, our GARAGE OF DOOM as I like to say. It's awkwardly built to begin with, with not enough space to easily park two cars and have any kind of equipment in there-- or even space to open our doors wide enough for me to strap the kids in or lock in the baby carrier back in the day. So instead it became our space full of crap-- strollers, trikes, bikes, tools. Piles of things to get rid of. Old paint. You know, DOOM. After years of … [Read more...]

Lemonade Strawberry Cheesecake Bars

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Make these lemon strawberry cheesecake bars in three easy steps! What a perfect summer dessert!

Sometimes when I share the name of my blog people are confused. They're like, 'you have a blog about lemonade recipes?' Which would make sense, but in 5+ years of blogging, would you believe I've only posted one actual lemonade recipe? Despite the metaphorical name, I'm kinda obsessed with lemonade so I'm kicking off the party with a special dessert-- Marci from Vegging at the Shore is here sharing her delicious lemonade strawberry cheesecake bar recipe! Cheesecake is a wonderful thing and … [Read more...]

DIY Mother’s Day Gift Idea (with Free Printable Labels!)

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How to Make Bath Salts with essential oils (and FREE printable gift tags!) PINNING THIS for a homemade Mother's Day gift idea!

Want an easy way to turn your bathroom into a personal spa? Or perhaps your looking for a DIY gift idea for a busy mom who would love some alone time to relax? Pamper yourself (or  a mom in your life!) by making homemade bath salts in relaxing fragrances to soak away stress and fill your home with an amazing aroma at the same time. You can mix up the salts in minutes flat, and decide whether to keep them or give to friends and family later. This two-ingredient relaxing bath salt recipe is sure … [Read more...]

How to Reupholster an Ottoman (with Faux Fur!)

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Such a cute idea! Here's how to reupolster a footstool or ottoman; she used faux fur for her daughter's room! Love this!

Ready for a quirky little DIY idea today? We're going to learn how to reupholster a footstool or ottoman in faux fur! Even if you're not into the fuzzy look, you can use this technique with any fabric for the same effect. Footstools aren't hard to find, I grabbed this one at the thrift store years ago and it's been begging for a makeover ever since. Not knowing quite what to do with it, inspiration struck when I found a faux fur rug on clearance at Homegoods and BOOM, done. You can find similar … [Read more...]

BEST Homemade Chalk Like Paint Recipe!

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If you've been searching for a great chalk paint recipe, LOOK NO FURTHER! This 3-ingredient recipe works wonders as a no-prep furniture paint so you can make old furniture look amazing again-- in YOUR style and favorite colors!

Furniture painting always seemed daunting to me-- there's the prep, the sanding, the filling, the painting, the repainting, the coating-- YIKES! Too time consuming for me, thanks. That's before I discovered the wonders of chalk-like paint, the same one that sells retail for lots o' money but can be made at home for pennies on the dollar. This type of furniture paint requires NO furniture prep, hides a multitude of painting sins, and can be customized to whatever paint color your little heart … [Read more...]

Free Printable Spring Outdoor Maintenance Checklist

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Free Printable Checklist plus tips for spring outdoor home & yard cleanup and maintenance!

The bees are buzzing, the birds are singing, the sun is shining (for a minute...) and that can only mean one thing, SPRING! Along with the nicer weather comes the realization that snow will no longer hide the grass, and damage from winter weather needs to be fixed. With that in mind, I whipped up a handy and FREE printable spring outdoor cleanup checklist to help you fix up the landscaping and get ready for summer. From the lawn to decks and patios to outdoor furniture, it's time to dust it off … [Read more...]