Oh Hello There Stranger! Junk and Disorderly

Welcome, welcome!

After a long hiatus, I am finally ready to start writing again.

I’m so excited!

There have been so many changes over the past year, and you’ll most likely learn about each and every one of them over time as posts go up. I’ve got some hot fun finds up my sleeve, plans for some DIY’s and makeovers to share with you, and of course I’ll share a bunch of randomness that goes down in my everyday life.

To start off I want to share with you one of the biggest treasures I’ve found to date. You know me… treasure to me is anything ugly, beautiful, old, new, shiny, rusty, unique, crazy, sentimental…

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This is a place I have wanted to visit for YEARS. I kid you not I would sit down south in Invercargill and whine about how badly I wanted to go to this store. Why? Just coz. I had a feeling it’d be the type of place I could easily get lost in and I was right. It’s a huge second hand store located at 18 Kawana St, Northcote, Auckland. Totally worth a visit! So without further ado, come get lost in the wonderful world that is Junk and Disorderly. P.S. Find them on Facebook.

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Do not be surprised if you see any of the above items pop up in photos of my home. Totally digging those colourful circular coat hooks. I have plans for them! I also spotted these things:

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Remember me writing about wanting these bust vases?! Ooo weee!

And how about this vintage chair…

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Look familiar?

Oh wait… I have that…

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Of course, I couldn’t walk away from Junk and Disorderly empty handed.  Fortunately for me, I happened to find something I instantly fell in love with. My favourite animal is a pig. Yes. A Pig… I have had a gorgeous empty frame for a while, and this little piggy seemed like the perfect addition to my art collection. (It’s actually a $4 gift tag. Ballin’ on a budget yo!)

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Let Me Ask You This….

401946067_56e628e15fI know I keep disappearing. My bad. Let me give you a run down on why that would be…

1 – I have four children

2 –  I work part time at a shoe store, part time for an Australian publishing company, part time for a Children’s Art organisation and part time for myself.

3 – I’ve just taken on full time studying working toward a Bachelor of Commerce.

4 – I’m still training and eating, bodybuilding style.

5 – Right now I am helping out some very close friends.

6 – I have a social life.

So now that you’ve been given a very brief rundown of what’s going on in my life, I hope you’ll cut me a little bit of slack if I do happen to disappear for periods of time this year.

Anyhoooo….

Today I wanted to put out there, a question that’s been posed to me.

It’s actually homework…from my commercial law paper.

But I thought it was an interesting question and wanted to start a discussion with anyone and everyone who has as much geek in them as I do!

So are you ready?

Fellow debaters unite!

Here is the premise:

My law classmates and I have been stranded on a desert island. There are about 30 of us. We’re not interested in going anywhere, the plan is to stay put. What we want to do is establish a new society on this island. The challenge presented to us is to come up with TEN laws to govern this new society. What would they be?

So come on people, let me hear your thoughts :D What type of laws would you put in place when forming a new society? It can be just one… it can be every little thing you can think of. I’m interested in hearing peoples thoughts about this!

 

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4 Apps That Can Transform Us Into Great Gardeners

Depositphotos_6843752_xsWinter can be an especially cruel time for gardeners. Unless you live in a warm climate or have a greenhouse to putter around in, you’ll likely spend most of the off-season pining and preparing for when the ground is soft enough again. Mother Nature Network estimates that the number of gardeners in the U.S. grew from 36 million in 2008 to 43 million in 2009, a 6 percent sprout.

With so many of us interested in gardening what are we to do? Besides daydreaming, ordering seeds from catalogs or drooling over photos of lush gardens, start by picking up that mobile device and pulling up fun garden apps. You’ll be set once the thaw happens.

Garden Tracker. If you’re someone who likes their garden just-so, then this app will make you happy. It divides your space into 50 X 50 squares, and you can jot down what you’ve planted in each quadrant of your actual garden. It will keep track of how many days until that planted item is expected to mature. There is also a place for notes about the care given to that particular sector – what days you’ve watered and how much. The app also isn’t for backyard gardens only — you can create separate grids for window boxes, community gardens, or even a mini farm. It’s $2.99 and might be considered priceless if you need much design guidance.

iPflanzen. Have you ever asked “what IS that?” when you see something sprouting that doesn’t quite belong in your vegetable or flower beds? The easiest solution is to instantly declare it a weed and pull it out. Before you do this, pull out your iphone 5s and activate this free app. By looking at its color, size, shape, seeds/buds and other characteristics, this app will give you a good guess of what it is from a library of more than 700 flora commonly found in gardens, parks, or forests. It might be worth replanting, or you might want to pull it, but at least it will no longer be a mystery plant.

The Fertilizer Calculator. Some gardeners swear by the “major holiday” rule of when to properly fertilize, while some follow the “none whatsoever” guideline, a well-managed fertilizer program and firm schedule really can do wonders for the productivity of your crops. Likewise, a poorly managed fertilizing program can cook your plants and let the weeds creep in. You can use this $2.99 app to figure out the right balance and blend of fertilizer chemicals to effectively feed your various plants. It also keeps track of when you last applied fertilizer, and even sends you an email reminder when suggested application dates are approaching.

Garden ID. If you’re new to gardening, and many of us are, you could use some constructive pointers now and then. This helpful app offers suggestions on where to plant and what to plant, and what’s going wrong. The “Identify a Problem” section shows you that lots of newbies have encountered what you’re going through, and can offer an easy fix. The free app offers info about a whole lot of fruit and vegetable types.

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Thomas Jefferson called coffee “the drink of the civilized world” and since he penned those words, the drink has taken an even more thorough hold on Western culture. Today, experts estimate that the average working American spends $1,100 on specialty coffees each year. Whether you’re looking for ways to cut your budget or just want to add a high-end coffee shop vibe to your home, these tips will help you stay on track.

Option 1: Quick and easy homemade coffee nook.

If you don’t have a lot of counter space or time to devote to espresso-making, milk-frothing and French-pressing, you can still create a cozy coffee nook in your dining room or kitchen. All you need is a bit of counter space, creativity and the right equipment for the job.

Photo by chunkysalsa via Flickr

The coffee: When you’re short on space and time, a Keurig or similar model K-cup coffee dispenser can be an invaluable addition to your home. Pick up a Keurig at Macy’s, then brew a cup of delicious, steaming flavored coffee with the push of a button in just a couple of minutes.

SheKnows.com also offers advice on creating lattes and other specialty drinks at home with the equipment you already have. Did you know you can use fine ground coffee to brew a strong blend that functions just as well as espresso in specialty drinks? Steam milk by slowly heating milk on the stove and whisking it as it gets hot. LifeHacker offers a similar tip on making steamed milk in the microwave. You’ll get the same coffee shop flavor—without hundreds of dollars of equipment.

The space: To garner the feel of a coffee shop’s laid-back style in just a bit of space, try this: Reserve a dedicated space on your countertop for your Keurig or other small coffee maker. Adding an oversized tray or a K-cup carousel for tea bags, coffee flavors, stir spoons and creamers will work wonders, too.

Keep the colors in your kitchen chic and go for a more streamlined, clutter-free feel. You could even try completing your space with a fun chalkboard—paint the frame, invest in colored chalk and let your artsy side take over. It’s the perfect place to share a few encouraging words with your family.

Option 2: Refined but affordable coffee bar.

The coffee: If you want to go a step above regular brewed coffee and are willing to spend a bit of extra time on your brew each morning, try a French pressed version. Quality French presses are available for $50 or less and craft a rich, silky-smooth coffee you’ll love.

Photo by petyosi via Flickr

The space: Set up your French press (and maybe a tea kettle to efficiently heat your water), gourmet coffee and condiments on a buffet, kitchen island or side table near your kitchen. If you’ve got them, use the wide drawers on your buffet to store teas and sugar or sugar substitutes, spoons for stirring and any other beverage specialties you love to use.

Keep things fresh with a bouquet of fresh picked flowers or maybe a few tea candles sitting in a tray of coffee beans for that spa-like aesthetic glow. The An Inviting Home site offers several clever suggestions for bringing the coffee shop style home, including opening up the curtains for a more cheerful overall feel and hanging quirky art on plain walls.

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