Monday, September 30, 2013

Color Wheel: Charcoal Grey

Charcoal grey is becoming the go to neutral for many designers. It looks fabulous in both fashion and decor. It conveys a sense of sophistication and looks good on everyone. The psychology behind grey tells us that it represents peace and balance.  It's calm, subtle, and a reliable color for any occasion.  But just because grey is a safe color doesn't mean it's plain. 

Grey as a Neutral

Grey as a neutral can mean something different to everyone.  It can be dressed up for sophistication or casually comfortable.  Light shades of grey have a more feminine feel, while dark bold grey is more masculine.  Like any neutral, there is a massive range of undertones grey comes in.  They can range anywhere from pink, blue, lavender, or even green.  Blue or green tinted grey reminds us of the sea while pink or taupe undertones give off a warmer feel.  If you're thinking about painting your home grey do some research and test spots.  Colors change dramatically through out the day depending on your light source.  Our advise is to try out a few and see how they compare in the morning and night. 

Textures and Layers

When you decorate with grey consider the textures you're working with.  It's important to keep your room interesting by layering different shades and incorporating interesting textures or patterns. There's something for everyone when it comes to grey.  This color is a chameleon and can be tailored to any style.  Modern, traditional, minimal, classic, contemporary, you name it!  Find your perfect hue and break out of the everyday boring neutral. 

 Grey is the perfect background color.  With a range between white and black you have so many options to find what best fits your space. Grey is much richer that it's neutral counterparts. White, beige, and tan are common place in homes these days and tend to look cookie cutter.  Bringing grey into your home gives it dimension and a creative flare.  

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

15 Ways to Decorate for Fall

Fall is officially here, it's time to pull out the pumpkins and indian corn! We all love cozy fall decor, so here's a list of great fall DIYs. If you're used to the same seasonal decor, try spicing up your style with a Autumn wreath or cinnamon candles.  You can find this list and other great DIY and decor ideas at The 36th Avenue blog.
DIY Sign and Fall Decor at Simply Giani

DIY Burlap Acorns by Life Is A Party

 Color Block Candy Corn Pillows at Positively Splendid

Fall Wreath at Shanty 2 Chic

Dollar Store Hot Pads Makeover at The 36th Avenue

DIY Fall Napkin Ring at The 36th Avenue

DIY Burlap Utensil Holder at I Heart Nap Time

Fall Garland at A Beautiful Mess

 Fall Leaf Initial Wreath at The Thrifty Abode

Pinecone Wreath at The Shady Porch

Book pages paper mats and table name tags at The 36th Avenue

Chevron Pumpkin Tutorial at My Sweet Savannah

Fall wreath at Tattered & Inked

 Rustic Twig Leaf Tutorial at The Kim Six Fix

Friday, September 20, 2013

Hot Spot: Lemon Tree Frozen Yogurt

This weeks Hot Spot is Lemon Tree Frozen Yogurt in Ankeny! Located at 1745 SE Delaware Ave, Suite 400, it’s not far from DMACC campus. There’s no better way to wind down after a crazy day of classes than with delicious frozen yogurt.  Lemon Tree is also taking Fun Money! Gather your friends for a sweet treat and kick back in their friendly atmosphere.
Here are some great things to know about Lemon Tree Frozen Yogurt!

Why is Lemon Tree Frozen Yogurt a great alternative to ice cream or custard?
-Their yogurt is either fat-free or low-fat, contains active cultures and has only 70 - 140 calories per serving. It is also a great source of protein, calcium, and vitamin B12. 
-Most of their flavors are gluten free and all flavors are vegetarian and kosher certified. 
-Their toppings are of the highest quality and freshness, with their fruit being prepared each day. 
-Their froyo is inexpensively prices by weight so there is no limit to your amount of yogurt or toppings! Prices do vary by location. 

Why is Lemon Tree Frozen Yogurt self-serve?
The goal is to be a fun atmosphere that encourages healthy decisions by letting people experiment with different flavors of nutritious yogurt and toppings.

What are Active Cultures?
Active cultures are good bacteria that are added to milk to make yogurt, aiding in digestive health and boosting immunity.
I couldn't help myself, I had to post their flavors! Froyo is too delicious, look at this awesome variety! Pumpkin....o my gosh.  Which ones would you combine? 

Original Tart
Country Vanilla
New York Cheesecake
White Chocolate Macadamia
Mango Tango
Pomegranate Raspberry Tart
Blueberry Acai Tart
Reese's Peanut Butter
Cookies n' Cream
Georgia Peach
Luscious Lemon
Pecan Praline
Very Strawberry
Dulce de Leche
Strawberry Banana
Hawaiian Pineapple
Bubble Gum
York Chocolate Peppermint
Peach Mango Tart
Not to mention that they have every topping know to mankind! I’m definitely making the trip to Ankeny just to try Lemon Tree! 

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Need to Know: Renters Insurance

Renter’s Insurance…we’ve all heard the term but what does that really mean? We all insure our cars, electronics, and even our health. But when it comes to rental insurance many people are in the dark. We’re here to break it down for you and give a little insight.

Isn’t my Landlord responsible? 
Your landlord is responsible for damages to the structure, not your belongings inside of it. They may even have coverage for damages caused by a tenant. However this doesn’t extend to your personal rental space. If a kitchen fire were to start in your apartment, it’s all on you.

Isn’t it expensive? No, not really.
Actually it’s quite affordable. On average a renter’s insurance policy cost between $15 and $30 per month. Personally mine is only $12, I think that’s pretty manageable. Replacing all of your belongings in the case of a disaster will cost you much more. Better to be on the safe side.

I don’t have anything worth insuring.
Unless you live in a shell of an apartment you definitely have things worth saving. The average renter pays $200 a year in insurance. Your computer alone probably cost more than that. Accidents happen and renters insurance can cover anything from clothes to electronics. Your possessions add up fast.

What about liability?
Yes, renter’s insurance can come with liability coverage. That means if someone is seriously injured on your property you wont be stuck paying medical bills. If you have pets, like a dog, it’s wise to look into liability coverage that will also cover your pet.  Accidents like this don’t happen frequently but when they do the expenses pile up fast.

Is all insurance the same?
Renter’s insurance comes in all shapes and sizes. Consider where you live and what kinds of things you need coverage for. Live in a flood plane? Might be a good idea to have plenty of coverage. Your premium in in part determined by your zip code, but you can choose how much insurance you want past that.  This way you can make it as inexpensive as possible while still being covered.

Next time your landlord hands you an insurance pamphlet don’t sigh and think of it as “just another cost”.  Word to the wise, get insurance before the worst happens.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Living Alone: Best & Worst Things

Making the decision to live alone can be a tough one. Maybe you’ve had bad roommates in the past or just want to fly solo. Either way there’s a lot to think about.  Living alone doesn’t mean you are alone, but it’s a big change of pace.  If you’re on the fence about living alone here are a few things to think about.

Pro – No one to annoy or be annoyed by you
Con – Living alone can be lonely

Pro – You don’t have to pick up after other people
Con – All of that mess is yours

Pro – No roommate to steal your clothes
Con – No roommates to steal clothes from

Pro – No one to share the shower with
Con – No one to split the bills with

Pro – You can stay up as late as you want
Con – Living alone can be creepy

Pro – You can eat whatever you want whenever you want
Con – Cooking for one means lots of leftovers

Pro – You can decorate you space however you want
Con – You have to buy all of that furniture yourself

 Tips to Living Alone

Find an Apartment where you can live by yourself.
Get a place that will be manageable to pay for and take care of single handedly. I might also be a good idea to live in proximity to community areas and activities. This makes it easier for you to get out of the house once and a while.

Schedule your time.

It’s easy to get into bad habits when you live alone. We recommend making a schedule for weekly activities and chores.  Plan time for you to clean you apartment so you don’t end up with a mess you can’t handle.

Learn to shop for one.

It can be difficult to shop for only one person. Have an understanding of what foods and products you go through quickest and which you can stock up.  Don’t over buy food you wont eat, it’s a waste of time and money.

Keep a healthy lifestyle.

It’s easy to let things go when you live alone.  Try to keep you space clean and tidy. Don’t forget to take care of yourself!

Learn to entertain yourself.

It’s important to learn to enjoy your alone time.  Living alone is what you wanted so act like it! Pick up that book you’ve always wanted to read.  Start a list of classic films to watch. Have fun and enjoy your down time.

Don’t forget the people who raised you.

Just because you live by yourself doesn’t mean everyone else fell off the face of the earth.  It’s important to keep in touch with friends and family. Make time to get together and get out of the house for a bit.

Enjoy it!

Now that you live alone you can play by your own rules. If you want to listen to Taylor Swift on repeat DO IT! Nobody else has to know you’re feeling 22. Now that you’re all grown up don’t forget to have fun.

Do  you have any advise for living solo? Let us know!