Tag Archives: apartment

Quarantine Weekends

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Quarantine Weekends

Hello! Going from being out and about every weekend with Johnny at the beginning of this year is a far cry from what we do now. With COVID and the fact that my county is now in a threat level red, our weekends have went from full and busy to full of binge watching in the blink of an eye. The worst part? The weekend still ends quickly even though we’re not doing much of anything, lol!

Johnny and I have a pretty standard weekend format that goes a little something like this: Video games, movies, and TV. I am currently obsessed with the video games he gifted me for our anniversary so I have been playing a lot of Paper Mario and Diablo III. We also take turns picking movies to watch in between our viewings of The Last Kingdom and SuperStore – both of which I highly recommend.

Does it sound boring yet? I know it does but it actually isn’t all that bad. For the first time literally since I started working at sixteen, I have weekends that are completely agenda free. All I have to do is sit on the couch and stay safe and I’m confident that Johnny and I can keep doing that.

One of the best parts of our weekends is actually thanks to the change in weather. Because fall temperatures are upon us, it has cooled down our apartment significantly. Believe it or not, I find myself telling Johnny “I’m cold” more often than not now. This makes being stuck in the apartment much more tolerable and there is nothing better than bundling up in hoodies and blankets while it’s nice and crisp in and outdoors!

Speaking of cooling down outdoors, I can’t wait to start taking hikes and doing all of the Halloween themed activities soon. Have fun and keep on staying safe. ❤

How do you spend weekends in quarantine? What is the weather like in your neck of the woods? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Mostly Ghostly Halloween Decor

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Mostly Ghostly Halloween Decor

Hi! Around this time of the year I love taking stock of all of the amazing Halloween decor in stores (AKA all year round decor!). TJMaxx, Target, Walmart, and everything in between I just want to see and buy it all, lol. Every spooky guy and gal needs creepy cute decor!

Unfortunately, in COVID times it is hard for me to go out and about on a Halloween decor crawl because of how limited I keep my time in public. So, a few weeks ago, I resorted to browsing online for Halloween decorations and kept coming up short. Everything I liked was either sold out or not worth the price being asked.

Believe you me, I was disappointed because I really enjoy buying new decorations for my apartment. But, then, Johnny reminded me he brought some of his Halloween decor to our place and that put the pep right back in my step. How can these goofy adorable ghosts not make you smile? Check it out:

Johnny is an avid lover of Halloween, himself, so I shouldn’t have been surprised when he had plenty of spoils of his own to show me. He has tons of outdoor decor for when we finally have a place with a lawn and lots of knick knacks to display around the apartment. Now, not being able to shop in store for Halloween decor doesn’t seem all that bad. 🙂

What is your favorite holiday to decorate for? What is your favorite holiday to celebrate? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Feeling Great!

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Feeling Great!

Hello!! With all of the craziness of politics, COVID, and everything in between it is very easy to feel down and out. This is especially true if, like me and Johnny, you are still limiting your time in public. The monotony of my never ending cycle of sitting at home, work, then sitting at home certainly leaves a lot to be desired but, after this past anniversary weekend I have been feeling great!

Johnny and I celebrated our one year anniversary over the weekend with a delicious meal made by a super talented friend in our very own kitchen. It was one of the best dates I’ve ever been on despite not leaving our apartment and we seriously had the time of our lives getting dressed up to stay in.

It feels easy to just turn on another episode of whatever you were last binging on Netflix and make a day of it. And, no judgement here, because that’s what Johnny and I do nine times out of ten. However, one small change up to our routine left me with a newly found spring in my step and I feel much better than I did before.

This is not me saying to go out here, there, and everywhere for something new. Rather, to explore all of the fun things that can be done from the safety of your home. Everything from dress up date nights to even a cleaning spree with the best music and company can get you out of the “I never do anything” slump.

Brainstorm with your friends about your next game night over Zoom, plan a social distanced picnic in the park, or maybe even a long weekend in a cabin? The possibilities really are endless and I promise that it’s going to be infinitely more fun than whatever TV series you were going to cozy up with! Explore and enjoy! 😀

How do you have social distanced outings? What has been the best date you have ever been on? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Feeling Snacky

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Feeling Snacky

Hi! It has always been important to me to have healthy food and snacks in my apartment. I rarely eat sweet treats as I prefer the savory but Johnny, on the other hand, requests something in the dessert department whenever I go grocery shopping. And, when that time of the month rolls around, I am oh so happy when there is chocolate or cookies handy compliments of Johnny’s sweet tooth! ❤

When Aunt Flo comes for a visit, my primary craving is ice cream. However, I can’t justify buying a tub of ice cream that I’m barely going to eat. My solution? Frozen Greek yogurt!

Living that #YOGURTLIFE in the words of Terry Crews from Brooklyn 99!

My newest snack craze has been sticking a yogurt in the freezer and crumbling a chocolate chip cookie for the topping. I love the ice cream like texture of the yogurt once it freezes and with that extra bit of cookie it feels like I am eating a low calorie sundae.

Your topping preference is up to you but for the yogurt I definitely prefer the Light & Fit by Dannon. The vanilla Greek yogurt is so rich, creamy, and flavorful and it’s seriously hard to believe that it’s only eighty calories! I like how filling it is and sometimes, if I’m not snacking sundae style, I will have a yogurt with my medication before bed.

The Dannon Light & Fit yogurts were actually not my first choice but Johnny brought them home from the grocery store as my primary option wasn’t available. He is always getting me to try new things and this one just happened to become a staple at chez moi!

What is your favorite snack? Do you crave sweet or salty? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Breakfast Burrito Bonanza

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Breakfast Burrito Bonanza

Howdy! My boyfriend, Johnny, is somewhat of a breakfast aficionado and I revel in when I can actually make breakfast for him over the weekends. A few days ago, however, breakfast for dinner was the move and it ended up being one of my favorite things that I’ve made in a long time. So, get your orange juice and coffee ready because we are talking breakfast burritos!

The last time I went to the grocery store, I went a bit wild because we literally had no food in the apartment. In this “we’ve gotta stock up” stupor, I had no problem purchasing all of the goods to make delicious meals at home. A girl has gotta eat. 😀

One of the things that I love about Johnny is that he is willing to try new things. For example, I am a strict vegetarian while he is the furthest thing from it. While there is meat at our place for him, there is MorningStar veggie sausage patties and chicken nuggets for me… And for him too, because he likes the vegetarian products as much as I do!

I decided that breakfast burritos would be a delicious way to go and something that Johnny would love. So I purchased tortillas, shredded cheese, shredded hash browns, vegetarian sausage patties, and eggs for the filling. In fact, when I mentioned it to him when I got home from shopping he asked me if I could make them right at that moment, lol!

I didn’t make the burritos right at that moment but when I did the following day they were a huge hit! In one pan I scrambled eggs and in the other I combined the hash browns and sausage together, breaking apart the patties into pieces once they were cooked enough. After everything was prepared, I mixed the eggs, hash browns, and sausage into one pan and then I put some shredded cheese in each tortilla. Then, I added the filling and wrapped them up. Breakfast for dinner is served!

While I preferred some salsa on mine, Johnny liked his plain. Either way, they were SO yummy and I definitely plan on making breakfast burritos again. Next time, I might consider different toppings like sour cream, guacamole, or cheese sauce. I also might add some sliced red peppers for a tangy crunch. However you dress your breakfast burrito, it is sure to be a hit no matter what time of the day you eat it. 😀

What is your favorite meal of the day? How about your favorite meal to cook? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

How To Choose A Moving Company

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How To Choose A Moving Company

Moving home is a huge task. It’s not like when you were younger and could move everything you owned in the back of your parent’s car. As you get older and have a family, you won’t believe how many items you accumulate.

While the cheapest option would be to hire a truck and do it yourself, there are many advantages to hiring a specialist moving company. When looking at a removal company, make sure your stick to the following tips:

Get a recommendation:

Hiring an Austin moving company isn’t something you do every day, so you probably don’t know much about them. Ask family and friends for recommendations. If you don’t know anyone who has moved property recently, try going online and asking on a forum or local Facebook page.

The next best thing to a personal recommendation is to look at the online reviews. Check out Yelp, Google, and Facebook and see if they have a history of happy customers.

Ask for a free quote:

A good company will send someone to your house to assess what needs to be done and give you a quote. They’ll also be able to view any large items or potential access problems. If they don’t send someone to do a survey, then you may get stuck with additional costs if the job is more complicated than they expected.

They offer additional services:

Many companies will turn up and pack up your belongings, provide the boxes and packing materials, and even unpack them at your new property.

Check their license and insurances:

Different states have varying requirements on the permits and insurance needed. Check to make sure that your chosen removal company has these in place. If they don’t and your property is lost or damaged, you will not be able to claim compensation.

Professional employees/Customer service:

A removal company should have good hiring practices. Their employees should be reference checked and trustworthy. There’s an element of ‘gut feel’ in your decision too. When talking to removal companies, they should be professional, friendly, and responsive.

Be aware of suspicious payment practices:

A reputable company will offer a range of options to pay. If they are demanding that you pay by cash, or pay the entire cost upfront, then you should probably steer clear of that particular company.

Also, ask them about their policy on delays. Things can often go wrong with a house sale, which causes the moving date to be pushed back. If the fees for this are extortionate, then you may need to look for a company that is more flexible.

Choosing a removal company is an important part of moving home.  You need to trust them to turn up, do the job, and take care of your most valuable possessions. Don’t just go for the lowest price, look at the services they provide and the guarantees against damage and delay.

Featured Image By: Erda Estremera on Unsplash

Paranormal Activity Pt. 5

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Paranormal Activity Pt. 5

Hi! For those of you who don’t know, I have experienced quite a bit of what I would call “Paranormal Activity” in my apartment. From a piece of paper almost levitating onto a candle to walking on broken glass a lot, my “ghostie” seems to pop up from time to time just to remind me that he (I think it’s a he) is still here.

Broken glass has always seemed to be the motif of my ghost. I can count on over one hand the amount of time I’ve stepped on it, even though it has been months since anything was broken in my apartment. The glass also seems to end up in the most inconvenient and unexpected spot – my bathroom for some odd reason.

This past week, I was standing in front of the bathroom mirror getting ready for work when, all of a sudden, I felt a sharp nick – like I cut myself shaving. I looked all over the floor for the culprit and couldn’t find zilch. I also examined my legs and feet extremely thoroughly and could not find any cuts or blood so I continued with my morning routine and considered it a “phantom” pain.

I left the bathroom and got dressed and then returned for finishing touches to something really weird – a trail of blood on the floor that was definitely not there earlier. I looked on both of my feet again and couldn’t find any puncture wounds or traces of blood.

At this point, I was in a rush and decided to just forget about it and I almost had until later that evening. I visited the LOO and as I was walking out, I felt that same sharp pain in my foot and, this time, there was a shard of broken glass sticking out of it.

This may seem like something little or coincidental but I swear, I walk on broken glass at least bimonthly and I’m not sure how it’s always me and never Johnny. It’s not like there is a lot of room to walk around in our apartment and yet I am the one with the glass in my foot. My right foot to be specific because that is always the one to get injured.

I understand that broken glass is hard to clean and it can end up everywhere but, the fact is, it somehow ALWAYS ends up in the bathroom and I am always the victim. The glass is never enough to hurt but it sure can be annoying and I am hoping that my ghostie comes up with a new motif ASAP!

Has any paranormal activity ever happened to you? Do you have a ghostie in your house? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Moving? Get Things In Order For A Smoother Move!

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Moving? Get Things In Order For A Smoother Move!

We all know that moving house can be a bit stressful, especially when it comes to your first time. The scale of organization, the psychological adjustment, and the emotional strain involved in the process, are the main factors behind the enormous pressure we can experience during this transitional stage of our lives.

First-time movers often underestimate some key elements of the pre-mobile phase, such as market research for a modern transportation service or packing their assets properly. So, to avoid feeling in a state of panic a week before the big day, do your homework and get an idea from some transport company specializing in home relocations. Also, make sure you start packing your items in advance and mark the shipping boxes correctly. This way, you will be able to find everything you need, quickly and easily, when you start unpacking them in your new home and garden!

So your dream home is ready. Let’s say you have found a beautiful new property with Bellriver Homes and you are about to move in. You will definitely want to make sure it runs smoothly, so how can you pack up easily and effectively?

Priority marking:

This marking system could determine which box has priority in moving, which goes first to the transport truck and which is loaded last. In this way, the moving company will be able to give priority to which boxes will be loaded first in the truck so that they can then be unloaded and transported in the correct order to the right room. The other idea behind this system for easy removal is to state clearly so that you remember which box has priority in terms of unpacking. Thus, you can mark a box with a “Y” for high priority, a “M” for medium priority and an “X” to highlight its low priority level. 

How to pack fragile items and how to mark the boxes to achieve safe transport:

In this case, whether you decide to pack your fragile items in groups or to make fragile items per room, numbered or with colored markers, you will need to use packaging and to wrap them properly with protective bubble wrap. Wrap each item individually whether it is glass, crystal, porcelain, or mirror and carefully place them in boxes. Use a lot of bubble wrap or old towels and cloths to fill any gaps between the objects and the sides of the box so that when the transport is undertaken with the truck the objects remain in place. Lastly, make sure that you have a label on all sides of the package that says it is fragile for the movers to see.

Unpacking after moving house?

The move is over, you are in your new home, and there are so many boxes to unpack! The best thing you can do is keep your cool and take your time. You will find that unpacking can be fun, especially if you have done the packaging and labeling correctly. You can reuse the marking system and start unpacking room by room, from high to low priority. Take regular breaks and enjoy, decorate your new home gradually without stress. Why not open a bottle of wine or lemonade, light a scented candle, and say “hello” to your new home! And if you have to move again one day, you now know how to do it the easiest way!

Featured Image By: Unsplash

Grocery Shopping Fun

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Grocery Shopping Fun

Hello! I don’t know about you guys but I have always loved going grocery shopping. From tagging along with my mom in my youth to stocking up the cupboards in my apartment, there’s just something about picking out tasty food that is so enjoyable to me. I normally only try to go shopping one time a month and knock everything out that I need and it has always worked for me. In fact, it works even better now in COVID times because who wants to go to the store every single time they run out of something?

My shopping extravaganzas were put on pause for the past month or so because Johnny made a few smaller trips. I was so thankful he did because I really didn’t feel like it but his shopping trips just didn’t hit the same. No offense to my MAN because I definitely was not as specific on the shopping list as I could have been, lol! This past week, I finally did a big shopping trip after we deemed our apartment as having “nothing to eat” and it was a blast!

In my neck of the woods, we have Giant Eagle and if you’re lucky it’s a Market District one like I have by me. The Market Districts are DOPE because they have literally everything you could ever want including all of the things you didn’t even know you needed. When it first opened five or so years ago, it was actually the place to be as there is a bar where you can get a drink and walk around with it while you shop. They even had live music playing for the first handful of months.

Not only does the Market District have a bar but they have all kinds of food stands where you can pick up specialty items – everything from gelato and sushi to stir fry, soul food, and delicious prepared pasta salads, soups, and antipasto. Like I said, all of the things you didn’t even know you needed.

I love going grocery shopping because it feels good to take care of myself and Johnny. Of course, I get everything we need on the list but I picked up plenty of treats for myself like vegetarian sushi, my favorite grapefruit beer, and yummy fruit popsicles. Johnny, on the other hand, got a lot of the breakfast items that he eats but didn’t make a special request for. I got them anyways because I wanted him to have variety. 🙂

Adulting doesn’t always have to suck and I think my deep love for grocery shopping is a prime example of that. Don’t tell anyone – but it can actually be kind of fun!

What is your favorite adulting chore? How about your least favorite? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

5 Ways To Reduce Home-Buying Anxiety As A Seller

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5 Ways To Reduce Home-Buying Anxiety As A Seller

As a property owner, you understand what it feels like to buy a home. Although you can’t wait to locate your ideal house, there’s also a sense of tension. With the figures involved, the last thing you want to do is spend money on a dud. Plus, it doesn’t have to be a dump – you may learn to hate it over time because it isn’t perfect.

Buying a home is easily one of the most stressful experiences ever. However, sellers aren’t exempt from the sensation. When your property is listed online or with a traditional realtor, you must make the interested parties feel as at home as possible. Those who are tense and anxious will instantly dislike the house and choose another property.

You already have a lot on your plate since buyers are incredibly picky, which may make you annoyed and frustrated. It wouldn’t surprise you the number of homeowners that think selling up is a mistake! Still, reducing a buyer’s anxiety levels is vital as it will give them a warm, fuzzy glow, and once they connect that with your house, they won’t want another property.

Here are the five best ways to make investing in your home as stress-free as possible:

Offer Flexible Viewing Times:

Flexible viewing times are the least you can do to welcome potential buyers into your home and give them a grand tour. By all means, discuss the optimal periods with your realtor and let them advertise the information accordingly, yet if they call at 6 PM and ask if it’s okay to pop around for thirty minutes, you should say yes.

There’s no doubt that it gets in the way of your routine, but half-an-hour is a small sacrifice if it boosts the odds of offloading the property. An excellent middle ground is to stage an open house. That way, you can house as many people as will fit throughout the day. The fact that an open house viewing lasts from the morning until the evening is ideal from a flexibility perspective. People will be less anxious when they know that they don’t have to rush.

Spruce Up The Exterior:

In many ways, the exterior of the house is the most important feature. The interior is important, too, but buyers are happy to see the building’s foundation as they want to stamp their authority on the property. They don’t like a house that’s already furnished and hard (or expensive) to restructure.

The outside is a different animal as it’s the first thing they see when they turn up on the drive. Curb appeal is a fantastic way to impress home buyers, and that’s what you should focus on as a seller. Houses that have the wow factor stand out from the crowd in a saturated market place. Therefore, the odds of finding someone who wants to purchase your home are higher.

It’s tough to explain because it’s a feeling. One thing that makes buyers more anxious is the idea that they won’t fall in love at first sight. They won’t if your property omits the elements that are non-negotiable, such as a garden and garage. Not only will these features tick the right boxes, but they’ll also impress the viewers if you take the time to repair impurities and add a lick of paint to make it shiny.

keys1Home sweet home!

Check For Signs Of Pests:

You may assume that you’d know if you were sharing your home with pests. Most people do, which is why it comes as a shock when buyers spot the signs and point them out during a viewing. Aside from blindsiding you, it also ruins any shot you have of closing the deal, with current viewers or future ones. It’s a small market and word travels quickly.

Pests make people anxious because the last thing they want to do is move in and realize critters are running amok. Thankfully, you would notice if big pests were residing in your property. Still, smaller insects are harder to spot as they can seem like the norm.

Mosquitoes are everywhere, so it’s not as if there’s an infestation. At least, that’s how it appears, yet Mosquito Authority points out that people should enjoy their gardens and pools without swatting away flying insects. If your home has water features and dense vegetation, there’s a good chance that the mosquitoes aren’t just visiting.

Other creepy crawlies to watch out for are termites, roaches, and ants as they’re inconspicuous enough to go under the radar.

Respond ASAP:

Whatever your decision, you should respond as quickly as you can to an offer. For buyers, it’s tempting to see meaning in the tiniest of things, so not hearing from a seller will send them crazy. The Balance recommends breathing techniques for people who get stressed out while waiting to hear back about an offer!

Don’t worry if you aren’t going to give them the news they hoped for as it’s part of the process. Remember – the sooner they understand that you want more money, the quicker you can come to an arrangement. Of course, if you leave it for weeks and assume that they don’t have the money, you’ll reduce the chances of securing a compromise.

In reality, their realtor has probably told them that you’d come back with a counteroffer, so they’ll be prepared to increase the bid or take themselves out of the running. You control the outcome, meaning you’re in charge and hold all the cards. Remember that the next time and try and empathize with the people who are desperately waiting to hear if they have a new home or need to make another bid.

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Accept Cold Feet:

Cold feet – everybody gets them. It’s not rare for sellers to back out of deals because they hate the idea of moving. As a result, you shouldn’t lose the plot if a buyer starts to have second thoughts. Firstly, it may be nothing more than a ploy to reduce the value of the property. Lots of sellers have fallen for it and dropped the asking price out of desperation.

On the other hand, they could genuinely be worried about the prospect of buying your home. In that case, there isn’t much you can do but hope that the feeling passes and the buyers come to their senses. Sure, offer them another viewing if you believe that it will set the story straight, yet there’s no reason to bend over backward.

With the figures involved, the likelihood is that they’re second-guessing the decision and nothing you do will change that. Instead, the trick is to hold firm and wait. In the meantime, you can continue to talk to other parties and line-up another buyer in case the agreement falls through. Whatever you do, please don’t contact them in-person and harass them as you’ll only increase their anxiety.

Anxiety can kill a deal, regardless of how much you attempt to ease a person’s nerves. The key is to eliminate the tension from the moment they view your property by boosting its curb appeal and fixing flaws, whether they are apparent or hard to spot. Good luck!

Featured Image By: Pixabay