Musings of a Museum Fanatic: 2020

10.14.2020

8 Tips to Help You Create New Habits

A habit is repeated behavior that you do regularly without thinking about it. I am one who lets bad habits quickly take over and can be slow to make good habits. Breaking bad habits take a lot of time but making the new ones can be just as hard. 

I've been working the past two months to instill good habits in my regular routine. It's been difficult and I've had some set backs but when I follow these 8 tips it's easier to create those new habits. 


One habit at a time
Focusing on one new habit at a time will allow you to focus your will power on one thing. This will help you not stretch yourself too thin and make sure that new habit sticks.

Don't wait
Most of us want things to be perfect and we're always waiting for that perfect moment to start things. Don't wait! Start working on that new habit today not tomorrow. There is no better time than today.

Commit for 30 days
It takes time to make a new habit automatic so committing for at least 30 days will help when implementing it.   

Break it up into small bits
Don't feel like you need to tackle a huge habit all at once. This can set you up for failure. Break up the new habit into smaller, manageable pieces. 

Keep yourself accountable
Whether you're able to keep yourself accountable on your own with a tracker or you need a buddy to keep yourself accountable find what works best for you and do it. 

Revisit part way through
Like any project you should always take a step back and look at your progress part way through. This is the time to see what's been working and what should be changed. Do you need to be more intense or ease back. Take time to really look at your progress. 

Be patient
It might take more than 30 days or it might take several times to create a new habit. Don't beat yourself up if it takes longer than planned or there are set backs. 

Reward yourself
You've been working hard! Don't forget to reward your progress along the way and success. Using rewards along the way can be a helpful tool to creating the habit as well. 

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

10.07.2020

Decorating with Photowall

***I received this product for free and to review but all opinions are my own. 

A year and a half into owning a home again and I'm starting to feel like we're getting more settled down. We have finally been able to think through decorative touches that we want to add to our home. One space that made me very frustrated was one of the walls in our bedroom. That's where Photowall came to our rescue. 


We have cathedral ceilings in our master bedroom so two of the walls are huge spaces. The bed side has our headboard to break up the space but the opposite wall was just this huge, white expanse and I didn't know what to do with it. 


Photowall has several options that are great for larger spaces. We had originally planned on getting a wallpaper or wall mural through Photowall. We thought it would be a great way to maximize the large space. You can see they have thousands of different image options from beautiful landscape scenes to maps and skylines to crazy ones like a Victorian Yoda

I knew from the get go that I wanted to put a large Chicago skyline in the space. With the horizontalness of the space it was perfect. Photowall came through with over 30 options relating to Chicago. As you can see we ultimately went with the Chicago Illinois Skyline in blue. There were several other contenders but those will be for another project I think!


When we started to measure and figure out the size of the wallpaper needed for the space we realized that it wouldn't work for the space because of the size and where the cathedral part of the ceiling started. No worries though because not only does Photowall do amazing murals and wallpapers you can actually get most of the same prints as canvases and the size can go quite large. 


We ended up going with the largest size canvas we could get, 59x39 inches! I was definitely excited for it to come in the mail and not sure how the delivery guy was going to handle the huge package without damaging the canvas. One thing I didn't realize was that it came in pieces and you put it together. Once I learned that was the case I was much less worried!


Putting the canvas together was mostly a breeze. We followed the directions and measured everything several times before sticking the wood pieces on the canvas. When it came time to bolt the corners together we couldn't get some together at first. Soon we realized that we had to apply some pressure to the frame because the canvas needed to be tight on the frame. After that it was smooth sailing!


Voila! A beautiful canvas piece that is perfect in the space. While the canvas was waiting in the hallway we discovered that this size would work perfectly in the space too. Looks like we'll have to add that to our list! Maybe this time we'll use our own photo and create a special canvas of our own special moments. 

Photowall is even giving my readers a discount for the next month! 25% with this code "museumfanatic2021" now is the perfect time to give your home a little update in the decor department.


Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

9.15.2020

6 Tips for Tackling Anxiety

About a year into my previous job things got so stressful with my boss at the time that my anxiety shot through the roof. My stomach was a mess I could barely eat for a week, I was crying every day about going in to work and I had to visit the doctors office several times in a week to figure out what was happening.

Since that week I've come to realize what my signs of the anxiety are and have worked to develop techniques for tackling the anxiousness before it becomes that big of an issue again. Here are 6 things that I do to prevent and stop anxiety. 


Stop & name it
When you first start to feel overwhelming stress or anxiety just stopping and trying to name what is causing the stress can be just the thing to stop it. Even if you're further in to feeling anxious this can help bring you back down. Kevin has discovered that helping me pick out specific stresses helps to calm me down. If you don't have someone with you talk to yourself.

Meditation/Self Hypnosis
This is a technique my mom recommended for me during that first huge anxiety time. She had used meditation/self hypnosis cassette tapes for years to help relaxed when stressed. I found that YouTube was a wealth of these types of videos. There was one video in particular that I used every morning as soon as I woke up. I helped me to relax my entire body, which for someone who carries their anxiety in their stomach that made a huge difference. Even if you just need some relaxation mediation can be just the ticket.  

Lavender 
Calming smells can bring on relaxation when you're feeling stress. I always knew lavender was a good thing to have around when you need to feel calm but until a few years ago I wasn't using it regularly. Stephanie turned me on to what she uses before bed, Essence of Vali's Sleep. I use a drop or two on my pillow before I go to bed. It helps to relax me while I'm reading before we go to sleep. 

Calming sounds
I'm always a big fan of using music to help with certain emotions. Bringing calm by way of music is also a natural way to relax and help with anxiety. Not sure where to start check out your library for CDs or Pandora for a soothing music channel. When you're trying to relax or meditate having the soothing sound playing can help calm your nerves. 

Have a warm drink
Ever noticed when you have that fresh cup of coffee, tea or hot chocolate when you take those first few sips and feel the warmth spread through your body. You can feel the relaxation coming with the warmth.  

Deep breaths
Probably one of the most important things to do to reduce anxiety is deep breathes. While you're doing all of these things make sure you're taking deep breathes. I find when I'm having an anxiety moment if I stop and focus on deep breathes it breaks up the tense anxious feeling. It makes me stop and name the stresses too. 

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

9.08.2020

15 Things I Quit Buying to Save Money

15 Things I Quit Buying to Save Money by Musings of a Museum Fanatic



**This post may contain affiliate links

It's been a few years since Kevin and I have been working to get rid of excess stuff already in our lives. Since we've been very mindful of our budgeting we've been working to bring less stuff into our lives. It's pretty amazing but there have been a number of items that we've pretty much stopped buying that used to be regular spending areas. 

This is our list of items but it might not necessarily be your list so don't feel like this is an end all be all type of list. Your priorities and needs might be different. 

Jewelry
I can't remember the last time I purchased a new piece. I have so much that I love but don't usually wear so there is no need to and anything new. 

Make-up
Don't really wear it so why spend lots of money on many different kinds

Scrapbook stuff
This is sort of a recent one and I'm still working on it. I've turned it into a collection of sorts and need to stop adding to it and start using it!

Books 
This has been something I've been giving up for years. This doesn't mean I'm not reading it just means I'm using the library more or a cost effective option like Scribd (try it out for 60 days free!)

DVDs
Yes I am a weird person who still has DVDs in our house. Even though we have quite a few I've stopped adding to our collection unless it's something I can't get in another form and absolutely love. 

Physical gifts
I haven't totally stopped on this but it's been cut way back. Like for the nephew and nieces I've been getting them a small toy or something usable like chalk then contributing to their 529 education accounts for gifts. Or gifting experiences for the adults in my life.

Ornaments
Kevin and I have two things we like to get as souvenirs from trips, ornaments or magnets. They're small and something fun. For a few years we were getting so many it's a bit nuts so we've been cutting back on that and getting more consumable souvenirs to enjoy later when we're back. 

New Clothes
My style tends to be more classic with a little bit of pizzazz or trendy items thrown in. So why was I buying new clothes like crazy? There was no need for it. So now I'm working to wear clothes until there are holes and no new items until I absolutely need to.

Pop
We'e worked hard to cut pop out of our diet and only get it every now and then as a treat. 

Greeting cards
I have been making all of our cards for the past year and a half with my Cricut. They've been unique and people have enjoyed having a homemade card.

Notepads & sticky notes
We've acquired so many as gifts and through promotional items that we have enough for years. There is no reason to spend money on one just because I like the design. 

Pens
Same reason as the notepads!

Water bottles
We weren't really buying these regularly but we've gotten much better about taking our reusable ones when we leave the house. So if we need to we don't have to buy one while we're out. 

Home Decor
I've never been a huge home decor buyer but now that we own a place I've found myself wanting to buy. Instead I looked at things like my craft stash and said I've got paint and vinyl, Kevin's dad has wood scraps. I can make a really cool sign like the $25 one at the store with stuff I already have!

Pampering 
I love getting pampered. I usually get a couple of pedicures during the spring and summer plus I was getting regular massages to deal with the stress of my previous job. I've cut way back on these items and only get them as an every now and then treat. No pedicures at all this year!



Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

9.01.2020

8 Different Ways to Automate Your Life

There is so much we have to do and think about these days. From kids going back to school to work to keeping up with our homes. It can be overwhelming!! I've found that there are some areas of my life that I can automate and take some of that stress and overwhelm away. Even just automating some of these small items can make life feel completely different. Have you automated anything in your life? What have you set on autopilot?

8 Different Ways to Automate Your Life by Musings of a Museum Fanatic



**This post may contain affiliate links

Bills
Automating your bills is probably the most common area that people automate their life. With everything having different dates and most of us having lots of bills. This is especially a good one if you have issues remembering to pay them by the due date. Make sure you remember to put the total in your budget though! You don't want to not be aware of how much the bills are costing you especially ones that can vary a lot like your electric bill. 

Groceries & household items
The past few years subscriptions have been all the rage. You can even have a subscription to items you order regularly from Amazon! By automating some of your groceries and household items you make sure that you never run out, you don't have to worry about purchasing the item and a lot of times by having a subscription you can get a better price. 

Cleaner Inbox
Did you know that there are ways to automate your email so it goes straight to folders? I've been using this automation to clean up my inbox. The biggest one I use it for is professional list serves. I'm on a bunch and they would clog up my inbox like crazy. They all go to a folder so once a week I can either skim through them or do a keyword search then just delete the rest. This is also great if you get a lot of promotion emails. Although if you are always just deleting the email then just unsubscribe because clearly you're not reading them at all. 

Finding coupon codes online
We all know I love a good deal. I would spend so much darn time trying to figure out coupon codes it was ridiculous. There I was 20 minutes later and four google pages in trying to find a code that worked. I feel like I am not the only person who does this right? So much time wasted. Then I had someone tell me about Honey, I was a little skeptical at first but it really does work. After you add the extension it just gives you a pop up when your in the cart and voila it checks all the deals to make sure you've got the best one. Honey has definitely saved me lots of time and money. 

Monthly contributions & saving
I've always heard the saying pay yourself first and I think it's a really smart one. If you've never saved or put money away in a retirement account it can be tough to change over to that mindset at first. I recommend starting small with an automatic contribution into the account. Once you've worked out your budget and adjusted increase it a bit. Then you can adjust to that and so on until you're doing about 15-20% which is what most financial gurus and planners recommend. Just make sure you're doing this before the rest of your monthly expenses and making it a priority. 

Budgeting
When we first started budgeting it took forrreeeever. Well at least that's what it felt like ha. We quickly realized that by both of us having access to EveryDollar through the app and online it makes things much easier. So we automated it that way but with most budgeting apps you can actually connect them to accounts and have the app pull in the charges automatically. So you just have to go in a double check but they do all the heavy lifting. 

Create systems in your life
There are some things that as much as we want we can't totally automate them. One thing for me is cleaning as much as I would love to hire someone and totally automate that in my life it's just not in our budget. So since we can't afford to hire it out I've been working to create a system to make cleaning easier. 

Maybe you don't want to spend money to have meal kits delivered to your house but want to make your lunches and dinners easier. Think about meal prepping in larger batches or doing a more intense meal planning at the beginning of the week. Setting up systems and sticking to them (always the tough part!) can help make life easier too. 

IFTTT
If you've been blogging or doing any sort of social media stuff for a few years you might be familiar with IFTTT (If This Then That). Most of what it use it for is blog related but there is so much more it can do. You can have it save photos your tagged in to your Dropbox or connect it with your home devices now. Check out all the different applets or formulas you can make and you'll be amazed at what you can automate with IFTTT.

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

8.18.2020

7 Easy and Cheap Ways to Refresh Your Home

I've discovered that one of the downsides to owning your own home is that you want to make changes right away. Let's face it now that I can I want to update all the things right now! Even though both of us want to make updates to the house we are working hard to reduce expenses and stick to our budget with all the economic uncertainty happening. 

Even though we're sticking to our budget and cutting expenses there is no reason why we can't work on giving our home a fresh look. There are a number of things that you can do to change it up or update things on a budget. 

7 Easy and Cheap Ways to Refresh Your Home by Musings of a Museum Fanatic


Paint an accent wall
I feel like if you own a home you automatically have a bunch of half filled paint cans stored somewhere. It's like a right of passage or something. Use some of the paint you already have to give a room a fun pop of color. Don't have a collection of half filled paint cans yet? Check with a friend or family nearby maybe they have a fantastic color they're never going to use again. If you want to go totally new pick a smaller wall that won't use so much paint and buy it. 

Use decor you already have
Take stock of all the little knicknacks, photo frames, vases and any other pieces of decor you have in your home. Then think about switching them from where they are now to somewhere else. Maybe you've got a larger wall hanging in your bedroom try it out in the living room or even a hallway. Maybe you're like us and you've got a bunch of items that are taking up valuable flat space but could be hung up. Make a massive gallery wall and showcase all the memories. 

Add some greenery
Besides the health benefits of having plants around having something green in your home can make it feel like spring year round. A packet of seeds and a couple planters is pretty budget friendly. Or maybe you have a mom like mine who has a green thumb and is always giving you plant clippings to cultivate. Have a black thumb? Fake greenery and flowers have come a long way in the recent years. Make yourself a fabulous arrangement and move it around your house every few weeks to liven up a new area of the house. 

Rearrange everything
The easiest way to make your house feel completely different is to rearrange things. Maybe you've got a living room or family room with several chairs and couches. Try them out in a different configuration! Live in something with less space? Look at pieces of furniture that are up against the wall and change their placement. 


When we purchased a new mattress for the guest/craft/Pampered Chef room earlier this year we tried out a couple different arrangements. As you can see from the two photos just rotating the bed alone totally changed how that part of the room felt. Give it a go and be sure to share those before and after photos with all of us. 



Do a deep clean
When spring time hit our deck looked a hot mess. All of a sudden there was sap all over, trees were dropping leaves, squirrels were digging in a planter and little spiders were making their presence known. I actually got upset because the deck looked terrible. After Kevin helped me calm down he ended up cleaning the deck and guess what? It looked brand new! It was amazing what an actual deep clean did to the space. When you're deep cleaning I highly recommend doing a thorough dusting. 

Get rid of things
I'm sure this surprises no one but taking things out of your house can really make a difference as well. Maybe you want to use the KonMari method and really do some stuff purging. Or maybe you just realize that it's time for the pile in the corner to be given to Goodwill. Plus if you get rid of some stuff there will be more room for your rearrange furniture!

Actually put things away
Alright this is confession time. I've realized that I'm a piler. I pile things all over the place. If there is a flat space I usually pile stuff. Now don't be alarmed it's not hoarder bad piles but it could really be put away instead of accumulating. I'm the worst with our couches, I'm working on breaking that habit. When I get my act together and actually put everything away the clean couches make the space look totally different. Not only do they look different the feeling is different. So try putting away stuff that's left out and let your lovely furniture and decor be the star it's meant to be!

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

8.13.2020

6 Tricks to Help You Determine the Date of a Photograph

I've been working on scanning lots and lots of family photos the past few years. I've gotten so many scanned that I have a huge amount of photos I need to organize and identify. So since the beginning of 2020 I've made that a priority. The identifying of photographs is probably the toughest part. Especially when you don't have many people in your family to ask. 

Even if you don't have many people who might know the people or event in the photograph there are plenty of ways to help you narrow things down if not identify what's happening in the photograph. Here are 6 tricks that I use in my personal and professional identifying of photographs. 

What do you have the toughest time with when it comes to identifying photos?



Check for handwritten notes
This might seem obvious but sometimes you just don't think about it. A lot of times with much older photographs they would write notes on the back since it's made of material that's easier to write on. When photos started being printed on glossy photo paper I think we stopped writing on them as much because it was harder. Also if the photograph is in an envelope or container there might be some sort of note. It might be obvious but be sure to check the obvious just in case. 

Check for a date
Many newer photographs will be printed with a date stamp on them. I've found that even when I get photos printed from online places like Shutterfly and Snapfish they print dates on the photographs. If you're working with slides there should be a date printed on them as well. There have only been a few times where I've seen no dates on slides. You might get lucky and have a date in the handwritten note on the back too. 

Black and white v. color
This is another easy way to narrow down the time period of a photograph. You do need to be careful because during the 1950s is when color photographs start to become more affordable therefor more commonly used. 

Look at what are people wearing
After checking for the obvious what people are wearing is the next thing I look at in a photograph. This is really what tends to narrow it down considerably. Say you've got two black and white photos like the one below. You know since they're black and white that they're probably before the 1950s but you need to narrow it down. 

Looking at the photo on the left. Look at what the little girls are wearing. They have dresses with drop hems, tights and patent shoes. The little girl sitting on the mothers lap has boots that are common during the 1910s and 20s. Compare that to how the people in the photo on the right are dressed. The ladies are in outfits that are common during the 1940s. I know most of us have probably seen a movie or two with a World War 2 setting and you can see many outfits that look like what they're wearing. 


People's hairstyles and overall look
You can't really examine someone's outfit without noticing their hair and look as well. They usually go hand in hand when it comes to trends. Looking at the same photos you can see that people's overall look will confirm the time period. Like the ladies on the right. Their hair style helps confirm the 1940s time period. 

What else is in the photo
We become so concerned with the main focus of the photograph that we sometimes don't realize that there are clues in the background! Check out the photograph below. Now I know who is in the photos because there were notes on the envelope but I can see that's my uncle and my cousins when they were younger. 

Say I didn't know that or wanted to be able to tell how old they were. What would I be able to see that could help me identify that? Check out the TV in the background. I bet we could hazard a pretty good guess or you could even try to figure out the exact model with some good sleuthing. There are some other things in the background including another photograph. That's actually a photo of my Dad on the TV! Maybe I know the date of that photograph or I could tell by his very obvious 1970s hair style!

 
Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

8.11.2020

Meatloaf & Mashed Potato Boats

A couple weeks ago I started an out of the box challenge on my Pampered Chef business page. So many of us buy a Pampered Chef or other kitchen tool with the best intentions of using it all the time. Only to have it remain in our cabinet, drawer or even worse the box for months or even years. Even as a consultant I'm totally guilty of this! 

I thought it would be fun to challenge everyone and myself to use one tool that we haven't used yet or is under utilized. Last week I made these super fun Meatloaf & Mashed Potato Boats using a few products that I hadn't even taken out of the plastic yet! 

Want to join in the challenge or at least check out what I've been up to? Head over and like my Pampered Chef business page.


Meatloaf & Mashed Potato Boats

Meatloaf
1½ lbs. 90–95% lean ground beef
½ cup plain bread crumbs
½ cup barbecue sauce, divided
¼ cup milk
1 egg
1 tbsp dried parsley
1 tsp onion powder
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper

Topping
2 cups mashed potatoes

DIRECTIONS
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

2. Combine the beef, bread crumbs, ¼ cup of the barbecue sauce, and the remaining meatloaf ingredients in a large bowl. Mix until well combined.

3. Use the Large Scoop to add about 2 scoops of the meat mixture into each well of the Mini Loaf Pan. Press the meat down and use the rectangular Boat Press to create a well.

4. Bake for 20–25 minutes, or until the meat is cooked to 160°F. (Some grease may surface. Use a paper towel to remove the grease.)


5. Rinse the rectangular press and carefully press the hot meatloaves immediately after removing them from the oven. Allow them to cool for 5 minutes before carefully removing them from the pan.

6. Brush the remaining barbecue sauce onto each meatloaf using the Chef’s Silicone Basting Brush and fill the wells with mashed potatoes.


Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

8.06.2020

How to Stay Healthy When You Work a Desk Job

Working at a desk job full-time can be pretty rough on your health. Since most of us are still working from home for extended periods of time I think it's only exasperated the issue. I know I've been guilty of bad health habits when it comes to working at a desk (or dining room table right now) all day. Do you work at a desk?

Working at a desk job is not as easy as it sounds there are a lot of different health issues you should be concerned. Here are 8 ways to keep yourself healthier when you're working at a desk all day. 



Posture 
Posture is one of those health benefits that I think most of us forget about. It's probably one of the simplest changes we can make to keep healthy. Having good posture can keep your body pain free when you're sitting for so long. If you have bad posture for 8 hours or more a day it can lead to issues in your neck, shoulders and back later in life. I know I've caught myself at the end of the day with neck pain and realized that I was hunched and had my neck stretched most of the day. It was not fun!

Not being active
When I'm in the office I am always having to walk to the archive so I usually get in almost 10,000 steps during the work day. The first few weeks of working from home I realized I wasn't even breaking 3,000 a lot of days. That's not good! our bodies are just not meant to be sitting for that long of time. 

I started implementing some activity a few times an hour. For me I decided I'd get up and walk to another room of the house and do one small thing. So I'm getting more steps in as well as putting away some things or accomplishing something else small.  

Stretch
Adding stretching to your movement is super beneficial when you're stuck in your chair most of the day. Kevin also works most of his day at his desk and he likes to start his day off with stretching. He says that if he does it in the morning and then a few times throughout the day his back is much better off. Take some time and even if you just do stretching in your chair you'll be thanking yourself for it later. 

Walk & talk
If you're in a call/meeting you should pace while you're talking. I know that with video calls it's not always possible but I bet there are some meetings where you can find time to pace and talk. I'm notorious with my family for putting in my earbuds and doing something around the house while we're talking. Maybe you can't do it during meetings but with all sorts of trainings being virtually maybe that's the time for you to listen and walk. 

Make time for breaks
From everything I've heard about working from home is that lots of people have gotten notoriously bad about making sure they take breaks. So not only have we been stuck in our chairs even more we're not breaking like we should be. Take time for breaks! Besides the fact that I think it's the law in a lot of states it's really beneficial for your health too!

Eat healthy foods
We all know that eating healthy foods is good for us. It's one of those no brainer things but it's definitely easier said than done. I know I'm guilty of it. It used to be the fact that there were always treats in the office but now if you're at home you've got access to your entire kitchen which might include several kinds of ice cream. 

Planning out your meals and snacks can give you flexibility to enjoy what you're eating but help you keep yourself on track. I've always been a good meal planner for my lunches when I went into the office but have slacked off since working from home. I've noticed that I've gotten sloppy about eating enough veggies during the day. 

Designate a work space
This is more for those of us who are working out of our homes right now. It's easy to have your work creep into other areas of your life if you don't have a designated spot. If it starts to creep that's when you've got unhealthy habits like working all the time popping up. Don't let it creep into other areas. I have taken over our little dining room as my work space. Maybe it's just a corner in a second bedroom or your family room. Just make sure that works stays in that spot!

Music makes everything better
Whether you love pop music, rock or country turning on your favorite tunes can make you feel amazing and happy. Figure out what tunes work best to brighten your mood. When your mood is brighter you are healthier. 

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

8.04.2020

5 Tips to Start Budgeting

Taking on new habits can be tough especially when it's something as important as your finances. Budgeting can be an overwhelming thing to start. We've been budgeting consistently for over a year and I still feel like I'm figure it out! Don't let it overwhelm you to the point where you don't start. Here's 5 tips to get your started on your budgeting journey. 



Write it down
Budgeting doesn't work if it's all in your head. As much as we say we're going to remember and make sure we don't spend a ton this month it's really hard if you don't have it in writing. You don't have to create anything from scratch anymore if you don't want to. We've been using the EveryDollar budgeting app for the past year and it's worked great for us. Maybe you're an old school excel person. Figure out what works best and write down your budget each month.

Make it together
If you have a significant other make sure to sit down and work on the budget together. Budgeting doesn't work if it's just one of you who is ok with it. Make sure you both get on the same page with what you're going to be spending your money on that month. If you just need to worry about yourself all the better, hopefully it's a much faster conversation!

Use the previous month as a starting point
When Kevin and I sit down to make our budget with the new month we always look at the previous month. There are a lot of expenses like housing, internet and Netflix to name a few that are the same charge every month. Since these costs are the same it makes it easier to work on your budget next month. EveryDollar lets you pull over the previous months budget so you have less work to do which is super nice and I appreciate how it helps us cut down on the work.

Always be trimming
Part of the point of a budget is to see where you could be trimming and saving money. So obviously if you're not actively working to trim each month the budget isn't helping with your saving goal. Every month Kevin and I talk through our spending together and we each share our thoughts on how we spent our fun money. We work to see where we can spend less the next month. 

Track all your expenses
This seems pretty obvious but a lot of times people think that budgeting is just the big stuff. The small stuff adds up and it can add up fast. I'll admit in June when the craft stores opened back up there was a lot of great clearance. I went a little nuts and forgot some of the charges in our budget. Luckily I was still way under my fun money budget for the month but it could have been bad if I has spent more and not tracked it.

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!