Author: Tiff Packer

150 is a Magic Number and Cash is King

MOST of us have very little expendable cash. We get by every month paying the bills like a good American, with very little left over, if any. How people afford lavish vacations seriously boggles me. I’ve always been under the impression that budgets are great, yet realistically they can be super difficult to stick by. I’ve learned that in every relationship there is usually a spender and a saver. I bet you can guess which one I am.

When it comes to furnishing your home, for most it falls near the bottom of the priority list OR it just seems to expensive. I have a solution for you. I know it works, because I’ve tried it, and I am currently doing it.

My husband asked me, how much is a reasonable amount for home furnishings per month? Knowing that we are a modest one income family, I said my magic number is $150. Now, this is what is doable for us (everyone is different). He actually smiled and was happy I didn’t go too overboard. My thoughts…You mean I get $150 a month to spend on home furnishings without you questioning???!!! Sweet!!! So this is what we have been doing, and it works well for us so far. I have been wanting to update my master bedding for a while now, so here is the progress:

Month 1:  3 new Euros from Anthropologie.  It just so happened to be my birthday month and they give a discount on your birthday month, so that is why I bought these first. But for you, they are now on sale, so yippee! They are a beautiful, crisp white, in person.

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Month 2:  Organic Blanket from West Elm.  I mentioned how much I love it in this post. I got the white as well (much needed after 10 years with cream colored bedding).

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West Elm White Blanket


Month 3: Belgian Linen Duvet Cover. Because I had a little left over from the previous month, I saved it for this bigger purchase and of course, as always, bought it during a sale. I went for the color “platinum”. Contrasts with the white well and looks worn-in comfy, yet luxurious, triple folded at the end of my bed. If I was more daring I would get the blush color.

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Month 4:  I had to take a break from the master bedroom. I re-stuffed my 2 back couch cushions. This was not a fun purchase, but definitely needed. I have a cool story about this….why I called this post “Cash is King”.

About 5 years ago Phillip and I took the Financial Peace University course and learned so much. I’ll go into more detail about that in another post. One of the classes taught us the Power of Cash, so I decided to use that power.  I was nervous that when I took my couch cushions in to be re-stuffed that it would exceed my $150 limit. So I decided to go to the bank and withdraw $150 in cash and walk in the upholsterers with confidence. I have used a very trustworthy upholsterer that is very reasonable several times. As I was watching him measure my cushions and plinking in some numbers on his calculator he said each cushion would be $85. I also knew that did NOT include tax. So that would be $170 +$15ish for tax. That’s $185, or in my current calculation, $35 too much. So I pulled out of my wallet $150 Cash and placed it on the table. I said with pure confidence, How about $150 Cash? Without even hesitating he said YES, counted the cash, rolled it up and put it in his pocket. I smiled and said great, but, give me a receipt saying “Paid” on it. I was out of there in less than 5 minutes with a paid receipt and smile on my face. He was so nice to me, had my cushions done in 4 days, and kept asking me to come back. Don’t worry, I will. Cash is King. Try it.

Month 5:  This is the month I am currently in. Since I have all the bedding basics, it’s time for the statement pillow(s).

Here is my current, lucious, comfy, white, relaxed, bedding (the picture doesn’t do it justice)…

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Here is what I’m currently trying to decide for the statement pillow(s)…

A// Group of Danielle Oakey Pillows

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B// Group of Studio McGee Pillows

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C// One Large Lumbar Pillow- Keeping it Simple with a big splashy art piece above the bed
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What do you think?  A, B or C?

So…did this post help you? Are you going to figure out your current Magic Number? I’m just glad I came up with one to start the ball rolling. It requires a little patience, because we want it NOW. I remember watching my design crush, Nate Berkus, teach a lady on how to transform her master bedroom for $35 a month over 8 months. It’s totally doable. You can do it. 




Tiffany’s Tidbits

July 2017

I get so excited about certain things in life that I just want to share with everyone. Here’s what puts a smile on my face this summer:

1// Jenni Gochner.  She is the crazy talent behind the painted Gourds!  I have been slowly collecting them for over 10 years now.  I just recently added Lady Liberty to the mix.  They are my favorite Holiday decor item to put out.  If you are lucky to live in Utah, go visit her Markets.  The best of the best show up.  You’ll thank me.

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2// Lime Riki Swimsuit.  I first bought the White Rose Peplum Tankini top and matched it with some high waisted blue bottoms I already had.

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I loved it so much I decided to buy more since I do lots of pool time in the summer. So I also got the Navy Peplum Tankini Top with the Jungle High Waist bottoms (just like the picture below).

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I actually gets compliments on it.  Makes me feel pretty good with this post-baby body.  The quality is amazing and I love the prints and modesty factor. Plus, you’ll love that they have a self-esteem campaign going, that no matter what size you are, you should feel beautiful. Bam! I love it.  TODAY there is a sale!  25% off you whole order.

3// Summer Blanket.  I’ve been wanting new bedding for my King bed.  That ain’t cheap.  So I have added one new thing every month for the past few months.  In April I ordered 3 new Euro Shams.  In May I bought a new Duvet Cover.  In June I bought a new blanket.  This month I will finish it off with a 14×36 statement pillow, which I haven’t decided on the fabric yet (go bold or serene???).  What I really want to talk about is the blanket.  I love it, I love it, I LOVE it!  It’s just what my bed needed to feel fresh and light.  It’s pretty thin so it’s not hot, crisp white, little stitching, and super soft.  Perfect summer blanket.  When you see my bed made (ha ha ha), that is mostly what you see as I’m tri-folding the duvet at the end to look more luxurious- great designer tip.

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4// Basil Couscous Salad. My mom made this salad when I was visiting her and I ate it for three days straight.  It was amazeballs.  So fresh and so unique.  Seriously try it.  BTW, everything at “A Bountiful Kitchen” blog looks brilliant.


5// Wire Brush.  If you have a fiberglass shower like I do, you’ve probably noticed that the bottom can look dirty and dingy.  My friend owns very successful business repairing fiberglass showers and tubs, so I asked him, how do I get it to look brand new again?  He said to use a wire brush.  Best little tool for the job.  With a little Lime Away and scrubbing, the floor looks fabulous now. Also, have you ever wondered how to remove hard water spots off your glass shower door?  SOS pad.  Works every time. You’re Welcome!

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6// Black and White Please. This shirt is adorable and comes in several different colors if you aren’t a Black and White pinstripe freak like me.

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I love this store out of Utah that is also online named “Called to Surf”. So many cute and affordable dresses, I want this one.

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Enjoy Your Summer everyone!  What makes you smile this summer that you want to share with me???I have some facelift reveal posts I’m working on, so come on back and check those out soon!

Love, Tiff




How to Make a Fixer Upper Inspired Wreath

Great for the month of June!


My parents were about to come visit, I cleaned my house, my car, I did everything but I noticed that I had no wreath on my door to say “Welcome” and “I care”. It was one of those in-between holiday times and I had only seasonal wreaths in my stash, nothing that was for those in-between times.  I needed to make an everyday wreath.  I had a left over straw wreath from other projects and I looked through my stash of decorative fabric.  I saw this awesome black and white bird fabric and that’s when I channeled JoJo from Fixer Upper.  Her favorite colors (or should I say shades) are black and white.  I usually go for color, but this felt simple and right.  Then I looked through my ribbon stash and found some natural wire ribbon that I thought would compliment the black and white well.  After about 20 minutes…Oula!  I have an every day wreath.

To this day I get compliments on it so I thought it would be a great “Craft and Chat” activity.  On the night of the activity, everyone picked a fabric from my stash and they all turned out so darn cute.  On Facebook I was asked to give directions for those that can’t come to Texas.  If you have any question, hollar.  If you make one, please post a picture in the comments.  That is one of my favorite parts of Craft and Chat, seeing the final project in your home.  So get your craft on! It’s so easy and you’ll love looking at it everyday.



1. After getting all the supplies above, cut and rip your fabric into 2.25″ strips.

2. Secure the end of the first strip on the back of the wreath with glue. Start wrapping.  When you have run out of fabric on the first strip, glue the end to the back and repeat until wreath is all wrapped.

3. Wrap the 33″ wired ribbon around the top of the wreath securing it with glue.

4. Make the bow by looping the 4′ ribbon back and forth, smaller loops every time (refer to picture above).  Scrunch in the middle and secure with wire.

5.  Fold 8″ ribbon in thirds length wise and wrap around bow, hiding wire.  Secure with glue.

6.  Glue bow onto wreath on top of the ribbon.

Done!  Enjoy your Everyday Wreath!

My Top Ten Favorite Baby Items 0-6 months Continued


If you missed my top five baby items of the Top Ten list, click here.

Alright, thanks for stickin’ around.  Here are the rest of My Favorite Baby Items:

6.  Baby Bandana Drool Bibs-  Cost $19.99.  These are the modern day bib and so dang cute!  Magnolia has pretty bad Acid Reflux, so these are a must because she is a fountain and I don’t feel like changing her outfit 4 times a day.91gf1nr4cel. sx522

7.  Fisher Price Auto Rock ‘n Play Sleeper- Cost $79.99.  I would not have known about this if it wasn’t for my sister-in-law Heather.  While I was pregnant she sent me a link on Amazon when it was $20 cheaper and said to nab it.  I trusted her not knowing what it was.  You need to do the same!  Nab it!  This bassinet type of bed is amazeballs!  It has the perfect incline, especially for acid reflux, and rocks on it’s own for 30 min. or 6 hours!  It’s compact and the height fits perfectly next to your bed if you want for convenient night feedings or binki duty.  It also has white noise with volume control.  Just plug it in, turn it on, and goodnight.71dpyvxgatl. sx522

8.  Dohm White Noise Machine- Cost $44.99.  It’s a little on the high side for a white machine but that’s because it’s the best.  Not attractive, not ugly, just one sound (airflow) but worth every penny when it keeps your baby sleeping longer.  Not to mention my husband and I get better sleep with it on too.7116d5vggwl. sx522

9.  Lucy Darling Shop Monthly Stickers and Baby Book-  Every month I get excited to take Magnolia’s picture with one of these stickers on her outfit.  It’s fun and sad to see her get bigger.  I also love to measure her growth by laying her next to the same stuffed animal.  Jellycat makes beautiful stuffed animals. The lion was gifted to Magnolia from her grandma and grandpa and special already.  The Baby Book by Lucy Darling is so simple,  to the point and adorable.  Making milestones easy to record and so cute to look at.51k8mnblrol51mp 4pvy5l61qvgjm93rl. sx522 618cdj3+0 l. sx522 61i8mkramul. sx522

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10.  Ollie Swaddle- Cost $59, (use my link and get 10% off!). I’m a huge believer in swaddling babies to help them sleep and sleep longer.  Their arms and hands can be a big distraction so I say tuck those puppies in.  The Ollie Swaddle is my favorite because Magnolia can not break out of it, unlike other swaddle blankets.  The material it’s made of is super soft and breathable.  It’s designed very thoughtfully by a mother and the velcro placement makes for a snug swaddle that will last hours.  Just go to the website and you’ll see how amazing yourself.  If you don’t want to “invest” in an Ollie, then my second pick for a swaddle blanket is what I have used for all of my babies.  It mimics the thin flannel blankets from the hospital that have just the right amount of stretch.  It’s called Swaddle Designs Cost: $15-25.  Instructions are on the tag and easy to follow.  You’ll be a swaddling pro before you know it and a believer if you stick with it.

My Favorite 6676 grande

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My Second Favorite Swaddle:81mkqwz4pql. sx522

(All opinions are my own with no compensation other than affiliate links)

My Top Ten Favorite Baby Items 0-6 months


Since I just had a baby, it only seems appropriate I do a baby post to get me up and going again on this blog/website. I feel pretty strong and passionate about some baby items I can’t imagine living without right now.  So I’ve compiled a list of my top 10 items that have made this third go around so much easier.  In random order:

  1. Doona Car Seat/Stroller– FAVORITE BABY PURCHASE EVER!!!!  It has a stroller built in Yo!  You can use it from 4-35 lbs. It clicks in and out of a base in your car so easily.  It’s compact.  It’s sleak looking.  The handle bar moves up and down (great when in tight spaces or when your 6 yr old wants to push).  And it swivels like an IKEA shopping cart.  It costs $499.  Yes, I know what you are thinking, that’s expensive, but all the car seat stroller systems I was looking out averaged about $399.  Why not spend $100 more for convenience, ease, no separate stroller taking up room in your car…plus, I have heard that they resale wonderfully, and that’s what I’m planning to do (that’s why I bought the gray, even though they come in so many fun colors).  I’ll put that money into the next car seat.  Bam!  My favorite thing is seeing peoples reaction when I just flip out those wheels and Oula!doona infant car seat storm grey 76
  2. Doona Essential Bag– Costs around $50. IF you decide to pull the plug on a Doona Car Seat/Stroller, then definitely get the Essential Bag to go with it.  They come in matching colors, it’s just the right size for what you need, plenty of pockets, and it clips onto the handle bar easily.  The name is perfect because it truely carries all the baby essentials but not too big where you spend 5 minutes trying to find your keys.  There are never sales on Doona, but you can sometimes score this bag for free like I did at Christmas Time from Albee Baby online store.doona essentials bag storm grey 18
  3. Fawn Design Diaper Bag/Backpack– Costs around $159. I know there are a lot out there to choose from.  This one is awesome.  It doesn’t really look like a diaper bag which I like.  It’s made out of practical and beautiful synthetic leather on the outside AND inside (for easy cleaning).  I get compliments and asked about it every where I go.  There are the classic colors it comes in like gray, black, and camel.  Then there are the seasonal colors like plum, navy, blush, and poppy.  They are always changing it up but just to warn you, they sell out quick, so get on their mailing list if the color you want is sold out.  That’s how I got mine.  Girl Baby=Blush.  I had to have it!fd 4.21 beckykimballphoto 279 800x
  4. Ubbi Diaper Pail- I didn’t have a diaper pail with my first two babies because I was more into walking my butt to the garage to dispose the diaper every time instead of it stinkin’ up the nursery with so-so working diaper pails.  Not anymore!  I’m loving the Ubbi.  I got it in gray because white seemed boring and sterile, yet I didn’t want to bring attention to it with a loud design.  The powder coated steel and rubber seal locks in the odor.  Just for an added touch, I like to throw in a new dryer sheet every time I change the bag.  Speaking of bags…no special bag is required.  You can use any tall kitchen bag, although I just bought the purple Ubbi bags out of convenience and I didn’t find them expensive.71u5ewxvhvl. sy679
  5. Copper Pearl Car Seat Cover- My sister and sister-in-law used these and I had to get one too.  It has multi functions. Because its made from stretchy knit, it fits over every car seat.  When I take the babes on stroller rides, it stays put and keeps her out of the sun without being too hot.  I’ve also used it as a nursing cover and swaddle blanket.  Multiple uses I tell ya!71bqoitrcsl. sx522

Stay Tuned for the next 5 baby items!

(All opinions are my own with no compensation other than affiliate links)