happy weekend

October 16, 2015

i link you

lonely palm | almost makes perfect

hi! i’ve got nothing new to report as we are still just packing. moving sucks you guys. i’m glad we started early so we could take it slowly and organize as we go but oh mannnn – i am so ready to be done with this. have a good weekend you guys and hopefully you’re not moving!

how freaking cute is this idea for a party?
⋅ because it’s important to have a large variety.
⋅ i watched this on repeat.
⋅ i also watched these on repeat.
⋅ i think it’s pretty obvious i’m an H. what are you?
⋅ some serious inspo for our backyard plans.
⋅ a fun project for welcoming autumn.


spooky spiked shirleys

October 15, 2015

halloween / happy hour

spooky spiked shirleys | almost makes perfect

i’m getting super festive today! even though i think we’re just gonna be handing out candy after our move this year, i love celebrating halloween — and i’m way more into the creepy stuff than the orange and black.

so in the spirit of creepy – i wanted to make a fun cocktail that will not only creep out your guests, but probably gross them out too. because these things are pretty messy, but they look cool and bloody! i decided to make spiked shirley temples because they’re red and because i still have a deep love for them from childhood.

lemon lime soda
corn syrup
red food coloring

01. in a bowl, mix together the corn syrup with a couple drops of food coloring. dip your glass into the bowl and let a little excess spill off before turning your glass right side up.

02. stick the glasses in the freezer for about 10 minutes.

03. in a cocktail shaker, mix together 2/3 cup soda, 1/4 cup vodka and a dash of grenadine. pull your glasses out of the freezer, pour over ice.

spooky spiked shirleys | almost makes perfect

how to move way smarter

October 12, 2015


how to move way smarter | almost makes perfect

now that we’re packing up for our move once again, i’m remembering how horrible some of my moves have been in the past – and really trying to do it better this time. at 30, this will be my TWELFTH move since my freshman year of college. not sure if that’s average or not, but it’s way too many freaking times.

so i’m trying to do it properly this time, for two reasons : to stay sane and not live completely in shambles prior to moving, and to prevent the exact same thing in the new house for the first few months.

we’ve spent hundreds on boxes that just get thrown away in the end, which sucks. gid has much less of a problem than i do with that, but it’s pretty easy to find free boxes if you make the effort. if they’re accessible, the dumpster areas at grocery stores and pharmacies are usually a good place to check. and duh, you can check the free section of craigslist and pick them up on someones sidewalk. that ends up being better because the boxes are usually less odd-sized than the free ones at a store. we’ve bought a few boxes but luckily we’re using my brothers boxes because he just moved. (if you know someone moving around the same time, ask them to save their boxes for you!)

i do this every time i move, but based on the amount of stuff we have – i’ve never actually done this enough. literally, i went through our kitchen utensil drawers and noticed we had 5 bottle openers and 5 slotted spoons and 5 plastic spatulas. this is insane. keep a trash bag with you while you pack and throw things out as you go. that dish towel or oven mitt that went from white to brown? toss it. i have big dreams of being a minimalist but sadly i have some serious hoarding tendencies. it’s such a nice feeling to toss things and not look back. and for those things that shouldn’t be tossed but you don’t need…

to save on boxes and moving things you don’t need, plan on a yard sale a week or so before the move. that will give you enough packing time to pile everything you want to part with and give you some extra cash for the move itself. i’m talking books you got as gifts that you don’t want, the 18 makeup bags you don’t use anymore, clothes.

not to toot my own horn, but i am amazing at yard sales. yes i know that sounds smug, but i am the best. i’ve never really had a yard sale where i make less than $300 even if i’m selling total crap. keep prices super low and make sure everything just gets purchased. add on items for people, sell clothes for $1 an item and people will end up buying $50 worth of clothes (which is probably more than you’ll make selling them to a second hand store). it might be because i worked in retail in college, but selling things is easy. just be super personable and super intense about them buying lots of things and they’ll do it if it’s only a few bucks.

for the items that are more valuable, or larger furniture you know you don’t want anymore, sell them before your move. you don’t want to bother moving a large table you’re going to end up selling later, so just get rid of all that stuff.

of my 12 moves, i’ve hired movers only about the last 4 times. and it makes a big difference in your life. moving sucks either way, but i think this is the best money spent versus having to plead with your friends to help you with the pizza bribe. also the last thing i’ve ever wanted to do after a huge moving day is worry about returning a truck. it all sucks, just hire movers. but to save on money, make sure EVERYTHING is packed. movers will quickly pack smaller items into boxes and that’s the quickest way to lose track of things and risk things breaking. have it all packed and ready to go before they arrive. (i’ve learned this the hard way, last time we moved the whole move took 6.5 hours, that’s insane.)

you don’t want to have to carry a box from room to room while unpacking, designate a room for each box you pack. my only exceptions for this are tech and decor accessory items. keep sharpies or a label maker on hand and mark every box clearly — put the room on every side of the box (i do the top as well as two sides). ask your movers to stack boxes with the labels visible. but to make it extra clear for me, i also mark what’s in the box below the room.

we all know what it’s like to live in your place before your move, it sucks. make your life a little better leading up to the move day by stacking all your packed boxes in one area, keeping the rest of your place a little less cluttered and a lot easier to get around.

essential items like your toothbrush, hand soap, medication, a towel, clothes and pajamas and all your chargers can be packed in a weekender bag for much easier access when you first settle in without having to open any boxes right away.

put essential items in here like a sponge, paper towels, trash bags, cleaning supplies, toilet paper, shower items, pens, remote controllers, scissors or a box cutter and some plates and flatware. our soda stream will also be going in this box. open this box right away and you won’t be looking all of the place for those things you’ll be needing. i use a clear bin for this instead of a cardboard so it’s easily identified. with the same intention, it’s super beneficial to pack one box for your first night bedding, so you can make your bed and feel a little more comfortable right away.

some instant coffee and a few mugs or paper cups, snacks, water bottles and your pet food are all things you’re going to want right away without having to scour through boxes. pack them up in a reusable grocery bag and you’ll be stoked you did.

don’t waste packing materials on your serving dishes, you can pack them up with your kitchen + dining linens as wrapping and that way everything can stay together for when you unpack into those rooms.

i never pack clothes in boxes because it’s a total waste. for clothes that are in a dresser that’ll end up getting moved, you can either wrap the dresser in saran wrap yourself, or ask the movers to do it for you. this is yet another reason to hire movers, because they won’t complain about how heavy the full dresser is versus how your friends totally will. for hanging clothes, ask the movers to bring wardrobe boxes (they’ll usually come with them anyway) or use trash bags around the clothes to keep them on the hangers.

liquor stores are always throwing away bottle boxes, that are way easier and safer to pack your expensive wine and champagne glasses in than wrapping individually.

this might not be a priority for you, but internet-less is not something i can handle too well. i’ve always had the cable guy come the same day we’re moving in, which can be pretty hectic but in the end i can be relaxed to know i can watch TV when the movers leave. now that we’re postponing our move in date but will have the keys a week before that, we’re installing the internet the week before the move to avoid the chaos – but either works depending on when you can get into your new place. also – if this matters to you, specify that you want them to bring white cable cord so you don’t end up with black.

you can choose the date that your new address will take into effect, and you want to do this way before you’re in omg i’m moving mode. don’t forget to collect all those coupons!

happy weekend

October 9, 2015

i link you

i’ve spent all my free time packing this week (and some not free time too) — and i am SICK OF THIS. but we’ve purged a lot and i’m trying to keep the pack as organized as possible so we can be sane for the next few weeks… moving is really all i can think about and i hope you understand. we’re celebrating two birthdays this weekend and having a special date night, so it’ll be nice to get out of the apartment and take my mind off it. have a great weekend!

⋅ these pumpkins are so freaking cute
⋅ wait so is this one!
⋅ you’ve probably watched this already, right?
⋅ love this minimalist bathroom
⋅ print yourself this good reminder and feel good
⋅ i’ve been wanting to make some more of these posts, but i’m BUSY.
⋅ i’m thinking this should be our first purchase for the house.


all things pretty : cleaning supplies

October 8, 2015

all things pretty

all things pretty | cleaning supplies | almost makes perfect

like i said in the reader survey, i want to change it up and do a new column to phase out the f21 roundups. if you’ve been reading this blog for a LOOONG time, then you might remember i used to do these roundups (like here and here) and i’m bringing them back!

i have this girlfriend whose apartment is insane. everything is tidy and gorgeous and corners aren’t filled with junk and it’s amazing. i asked her how she did it and she said that she is insane and makes it a point to only buy things that are beautiful and it takes a lot of research and money and time, but to me that means you don’t later want to toss things.

now that we’re packing and purging, i’m really focusing on buying smarter for our home — like no impulse buys. instead of running out and purchasing a cheap fan when it’s hot out, it’s a way better use of my money to spend a little extra to get a beautiful fan i’ll want to cherish forever. so that’s my new thing. and ps, i’m still going to read reviews on products and not to buy things just for the aesthetic but for function as well! i’m not totally stupid.

today is cleaning supplies! i hate cleaning, but maybe these would help inspire me. keep reading

DIY mini granite pots

October 6, 2015


diy mini granite pots | almost makes perfect diy mini granite pots | almost makes perfect

today’s DIY is one of the easiest in a while! many of you have said you want some more planter projects, so here’s the first of hopefully many. guess what you do. yep that’s right you just spray paint. i ordered a bunch of these little PVC pipe caps and i wasn’t expecting them to have the little round bottoms that they had — but this is what happens almost every time i order supplies online. i still used them and i ended up being really happy with the shape after all. total tim gunn moment OMG.

diy mini granite pots | almost makes perfect


01. go outside and setup a safe spray paint station. spray with the primer, let dry.

02. spray with your granite spray and wait about an hour to do a second coat. stay far away while spray painting and the texture will come out a lot better.

03. for the half granite, just use your painters tape to tape off half. duh.

04. mix around with spraying, the half sprayed pot is a combo of a layer of the dark granite with a layer of the light on top. buy a few extra PVC caps to play around and see what you like!

05. once dry, plant your succulents or cacti. if you want to plant something else, drill a hole in the bottom to allow for draining.

diy mini granite pots | almost makes perfect diy mini granite pots | almost makes perfect

really cute right?! i want to make dozens of these and scatter them all over the house.

reader survey results!

October 5, 2015

yada yada

yay! it’s results time people. and i promise they won’t be as disappointing as americas got talent just was… yes, i watched that. gid made me because howard stern was on it, and then we got way into it and we are EFFING PISSED that the regurgitator didn’t win because we would spend serious money to see that guy in vegas. i would have done this follow-up sooner, but people kept filling out the survey so i held off.

anyway, i’ll end my rant so we can move on to the results! i want to thank you all from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to fill it out — obviously i had no idea if people would actually do it, but i was overwhelmed and stoked and honored on the amount of results that piled in. so that’s my THANK YOU. i learned a lot actually, there were some non-surprises, and then there were some whoa surprises too.

you guys had a lot of questions, so this is gonna be a loooooong post. there were some overlap with the questions, so i might get repetitive but i tried to thoughtfully answer all of them.

the overwhelmingly bad news though… 85% of you guys don’t watch bachelor in paradise. i was appalled, and i just have to say – that that show rules and you should totally watch it. it’s way better than the bachelor. it’s kind actually a perfect reality show. so please take my advice, will ya? keep reading