28 July 2016

End-of-Summer Bargain Shopping Deals

It's a great time to score on lots of end of season bargains you might need for your home and yard. Our bare backyard could definitely use some furniture and other things and we'll work on that little by little.

image via Houzz

Here are a few great items to be watching for here (both instore and online) in the last week of July and beginning of August.

  • Beach Towels -- Last year I picked up 10 matching beach towels to have on hand for pool parties for just $6 a piece. They are beautiful striped towels that we keep for when we have guests. We have a huge stack of more worn but plenty serviceable towels for everyday use but it's great to have a stack of guest-ready towels on hand all the time.
  • Patio Furniture -- many retails stores have already cleared out most of their summer furniture, so it's good to start looking mid-July. But there are lots of great deals on dining sets, outdoor sofas and sectionals and comfortable seating online and there is still lots of time to enjoy it outdoors before late fall. Maybe you need a replacement umbrella or replacement cushions for furnitures. There are some great options out there at good prices.
  • Pool Toys & Equipment -- You can find all kinds of toys and swimming gear on clearance right now. This year we've added quite a bit to our water toys stash but I am hoping to grab some workout fins in the next couple of weeks. Have seen the on clearance online for $12 in a multitude of colors.
  • Swim Wear -- Lots of great deals out there right now. It's the perfect time to pick up a new suit for your winter, tropical vacation or to get new sizes for growing kids that will see them through Summer 2017. Think about water shoes and cover-ups if needed too.
  • Summer Clothes -- When I lived in a coastal climate, this was a great time to load up on clearance priced sandals and summer wear that would carry me throughout the year. Warm weather shoes were always an especially good deal right now.
 I try to remember to put a little extra money aside each July to purchase some of these items that I know we'll need when I can save a bundle on them. Back to school shopping starts up about now too, so that's another expense to add to the budget.

This year I think we may completely skip school shopping all together because kiddo somehow ended up with so much clothing last year that still fits her that she has barely worn. Since she's just gone through a growth spurt, I imagine there will be another one in a few months so I'm thinking we save our money for mid-year when it's very likely that all the clothing in her closet will suddenly, overnight be too small for her and we'll need new everything.

21 July 2016

A Gift For Self: Indian Handcrafted Turquoise & Sterling Silver Jewelry

A few weeks ago I completed a pretty big personal journey and felt it deserved to be marked with a reward. I decided to stop by a local downtown jewelry and handcrafted arts shop to see if there was a special something with a unique New Mexico flavor I could add to my jewelry collection - turquoise and sterling silver jewelry.


I have always loved the more classic side of Boho Style and turquoise and silver definitely live in that space. So it seemed the perfect end of something, new beginning of great new things present for myself.

I walked around that jewelry department at least five or six times. There were beautiful necklaces, earring, bracelets, watches, silver and leather belts -- so many amazing things! At some point I narrowed down what I wanted to a bracelet and perhaps a pair of earrings. I tried on a lot of bracelets in different colors and designs. I wanted to find something that really spoke to me.

That has been a theme of mine that I've been thinking about a lot lately. I am reaching a point in my life where I just want to be authentically and uniquely me. I don't want to wear or own things I don't love. I don't want to do things because I feel like I should when it's absolutely 100% something I don't want to do. I had a funny conversation with a friend about that a few days ago. It went something like this. To set the stage, there was a big event cultural event I felt I "should" go to.

Then I said, "I don't like that form of art at all...why would I go to that? No one is telling me I should.....I'm not going. I don't need to go and I don't need to feel like I "should" go. I just don't have to go." Now granted I am a complete believer in the power of just saying yes and trying something new, but that doesn't mean I need to do things that I already know don't make me happy because I think I should. There's a fine line.

So anyway, (tangent recovery) the store was really warm and as I was shopping I was getting more drenched with perspiration. But I didn't want to let that impede me from making the best choice possible. I really wanted to make sure I made a good decision and didn't just spend money on impulse. By the time I got to the cashier, the entire underneath side of my hair was dripping wet from the heat in the store.


In the end, I purchased this beautiful cuff bracelet with rows of small, squarish turquoise stones set in four rows. The sides are punched sterling silver and it is one of the most beautiful bracelets I've ever laid my eyes on. I love it that day and every time I look at it I feel like I hit the nail on the head. Will keep it for a family heirloom.


I also picked up a pair of earrings and this time I went with a complete, quintessential New Mexico style. Can't you just see me in a white blouse with a sterling silver chain belt, a ruffled denim skirt and cowboy boots headed to a New Mexico social event. That might be a little over the top, haha, but it's fun to imagine. I do love that these will go with just about anything and work well with my bracelet too. It's fun to splurge every once in a while and I think it's good for the soul. I'm looking forward to enjoying these pieces for years to come.

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