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a year ago

| On
8:00 AM
I love a good prompt, and this week Mama's Losin' It! had several good ones to choose from.

My pick was: What were you doing last year at this time?

This is pretty easy for me to answer, only because I know exactly what I was doing: moving. You know that particular kind of broke that comes along with moving expenses and filling your new cupboards with a thousand different types of condiments for the first time? That was me last year.

This fortune cookie was only semi-right.

I prepared to move house by taking my shit off the walls.

I cut my own bangs, albeit crookedly. There's nothing better than heaving boxes from car to condo with a forehead full of sweaty, fresh cut hair.

I lost my mind and decided to paint a bunch of my furniture, including this cabinet. I hope you can visualize the whole thing from this one tiny hinge, because in my moving frenzy I forgot to take a before or proper after photo.

Shasta had no idea what the fuck was going on; she was just happy to be there.

Moving day was December 1st. I didn't have my furniture yet, but I had all my Rubbermaids and boxes, so I took the opportunity to knock out my first priority: putting up the Christmas tree. I slept on an air mattress that night and used the Christmas tree as a lamp for the first month of living there - aka #lifegoals.

Check out my tree (and living room) this year - I actually put balls on it this go around!

I look back at that time in my life fondly, and also find myself wondering how the fuck I accumulated so much junk in only one calendar year. I couldn't pack another piece of furniture into my living room now if I tried.

Extra credit: Two years ago at this time I was suffering from debilitating anxiety, but that's for me to know and a story to tell you later!

Free: Garage Sale Printables

| On
10:00 AM

I've been on a "sell everything" kick lately that has mostly culminated in getting rid of an old bed frame on Varage Sale, and some vintage toys on I'm not exactly rolling in cash from my sales, but it did free up some much needed real estate in my second bedroom and storage closets.

Selling online is easy, but it's not exactly efficient. If you have a mountain of different items to get rid of, you have to spend time taking pictures and creating individual listings, bartering back and forth via email, and essentially waiting around for a buyer that may or may not show up.

This is why I love garage sales. They're instant gratification! Plan for a sunny weekend, throw some signs up, pull your shit out of the garage, and you're ready to go.

I created these free garage sale printables to make the organization and staging processes a little easier.

All you have to do is separate the things you're planning to sell into like groups, print out this PDF file, and cut where needed. Each page was created to print in either color or black and white, on standard 8.5" x 11" computer paper.

This free garage sale printables file includes blank templates as well, so you can sharpie your way to total customization.

Here's a full preview of what you can find inside the file:

Look good?

Download the entire PDF file here.

The Pinterest Project

| On
9:00 AM

So, you could say I'm a little out of the blogging game.

Two years ago I totally knew what was up. Fuck yeah, link-ups. Twitter chats? I'm all over it. SEO keyword customization and custom WordPress themes were easy. I doled out advice to other bloggers like it was candy: take it, remember it, enjoy it.

Now, here I am, all when did Pinterest get an algorithm change and people have finally given up on Google Plus?! I feel like a time traveler stumbling into an Apple store. What in fresh hell is that? So I've made myself a promise: concentrating on one social media platform at a time, I will slowly move myself out of 2013 and into the present day.

Because I recently bought an iPad and Pinterest has been my go-to time waster lately, I've decided to start there.

Tonight I laid on my living room floor reading a bunch of articles that spoon fed me basic advice, such as "have a profile picture" and "include your blog's keywords in your profile description." I moved onto some bible length articles that I quickly realized were now out of date, and finally landed on some content that I decided would actually help me, like this post, and this one.

It theoretically sounds like some crazy shit, but I read through the second article a couple of times and decided to start there.

    Here's what I've done so far:
    - Went through and deleted old, irrelevant pins (500-600).
    - Split some larger boards up into multiples.
    - Reorganized my boards in a way that made sense.
    - Updated all of my board cover photos.
    - Simplified each board name, ensuring it reflected the board's content.

Now I'm wishing I had the forethought to take some before and after photos.

Anyways, here's what my profile looks like now:

While reorganizing my boards, I made sure to put the ones most relevant to my blog at the very top.

I also want to clarify why I deleted so many pins in one go. I didn't remove them just because they were performing poor statistically, or because they had zero repins. I deleted them because they were old, outdated, ugly, or similar. I've had my Pinterest account for almost five years; there was a lot of old shit 23 year old me liked that 28 year old me doesn't! It was an opportunity to clean house, not decimate it.

That being said, there's still a shit-ton of work I have left to do, but I think I'm off to a good start, and have begun to form a general game plan for the remainder of what I need to do.

    Here's what I'm doing next:
    - Editing each board description to include relevant keywords.
    - Choosing a category for each board related to its content.
    - Updating pin descriptions if needed.
    - Removing hashtags from pin descriptions.
    - Deleting any pins with broken or outdated links.

    Here's what I'd like to do in the future:
    - Concentrate on pinning original content instead of repins.
    - Include Pinterest specific images in my blog posts.
    - Write a better profile description.

If all goes according to plan, I'd like to see my existing Pinterest account grow like a teeeeeny tiny plant, laying dormant in the shade for five years only to emerge with a little bit of TLC. I'm not sure if I'll continue to make blog posts updating my progress - that's for future me to know and everyone else to find out!

Fa la la la la

| On
10:00 AM
Historically I am much more of a Halloween person than a Christmas one.

The difference between the two sides of my decoration storage is kinda sad. There are five Halloween Rubbermaids, all lovingly labelled and stacked, freshly organized to keep any imaginary bugs and dust out. And then, like a sad relative, there's my Christmas stuff: awkwardly stored in two different sized containers, both of which barely made it through my last move.

Anyway, my point is: this year I decided to step up my holiday game a bit. I also put up my decorations on this side of early, but only so I could waste the first two weeks of December half-assing Christmas DIYs.

This is my living room, where I spend approximately 70% of my day. And yes I am re-watching Friends for the 400th time; this marathon comes straight off the tail end of watching all three seasons of Hannibal repeatedly.

Yes, I purchased individual posters for all of the Jackass movies and had them framed. Thank you for asking.

I hit the IKEA holiday clearance section hard when I was 21 or 22, and came out of it with a bunch of black ornaments, including this black poinsettia. I still have to buy actual pots for it and its gold counterpart, six years later.

This is my nest aka my ass groove. You can tell I spend a great amount of time here because it's covered in shrapnel such as: remotes, Xbox controllers, various food items throughout the day, and the Blender Bottle I only use to drink orange juice out of.

Please note that creepy baby blanket is for Shasta to lay in, I do not wrap myself in it.

I don't have a fireplace mantel so I kinda decorate my bar?  I don't know, somehow it's become a thing.  CHECK OUT THOSE TINY TREES.

Aaaaand this is the extent of my kitchen decorating - empty salt and pepper shakers. They're cute though right!? I need some dish cloths or a fancy tray or something.

Shasta was unimpressed with the amount of aimless wandering around I was doing.

Anyway, so after hanging balls for two hours and trying to figure out why the tree was leaning at a funny angle, I hit up Pinterest to research the various ways I could up my Christmas game.

Everything just happened really quickly, guys.

I want a hundred of these little fuckers. Seriously. Give me a shelf, some vintage Jadeite and an army of these crispy little Santa mugs. Please. Anyone.

Every November I think to myself, man. I should buy some tins. I should buy a bunch of tins and make a bunch of sugar cookies, and everyone will be so happy with their homemade presents. Cut to me on December 23rd, buying anything that will ship overnight with Amazon Prime.

I want this wreath but I don't want to spend $100 to make this wreath.

I would also like an entire neighbourhood of various glass containers filled with tiny houses, colourful bottle brushes, and baby deers. BABY DEERS, OKAY.

Bottle brushes are kind of my jam. I don't own any, but one day, I will buy a sideboard to keep in my dining room that doesn't exist yet, and then I will curate an entire forest of bottle brushes to exist on that sideboard for only one month a year.

So that's where I'm at with my life right now, I guess. Please don't let me go to HomeSense without some kind of game plan.

101 in 1,001

| On
12:56 AM
Does anyone else remember this?:

About a million years ago, there was a LiveJournal community (yes, this is a legit-legit throwback) called Mission 101.

The basic idea was simple: make a list of 101 tasks or personal goals, and knock as many of them out within three years (1,001 days) as possible.

As a youngin', aka 17 or so, I wrote all kinds of dumb shit, like "apply for a job at HMV" and "get a Fall Out Boy tattoo." I created two different lists, neither of which I can remember now, and checked off approximately 10% of the goals that I set out to complete.

This is what I looked like during prime LJ years. I was VERY cool, as you can see.

Even though my execution was a little half-assed at the time, the general idea of the community stuck with me. This is disgusting, but: it's been almost ten years since I discovered Mission 101, and more than that since LJ was a legit thing.

Anyways, the point I'm trying to make is that I thought it would be a cool project to work on over the next three years. I'm 28 now, which means I will officially be in my thirties by the time this thing is over - if I can make it further than my teenage self did, anyways.

This is me now, secretly wishing I could still pull off box black hair.

My action plan is to make each task quantifiable, doable, and realistic.

I'm still working on my list now, but I plan to finish writing down the goals I'd like to achieve, and post the whole thing here come December 1st. Is it a good idea? Will I get further than 10% completion after I finally give in and buy an Xbox One? Who knows. At least in the meantime, it'll be good blog fodder :)