buying second handIn the last 50 years commercials have done a great job in convincing us that new is better than used.

The mind set is  that if it was owned by anyone else then there must be something wrong with it.

You need to buy all shiny and new.

We have all been in homes that have been filled with old second hand stuff and thought that there is no way we would live like that. But there are people that only buy second hand and have gorgeous homes.

How do you have a happy medium? What can you live on second hand and when should you buy new?

How to Press Leaves

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How to Press Leaves
Such an beautiful and easy thing to do at this time of year is pressing leaves and then using them decoratively around your home.

Albert Camus called fall a second spring with every leaf a flower.

The colors that the leaves change to can be so vibrant that you just want them to say that way forever.

Pressing leaves is easy to do and something that your children can get involved with.

Are You a Saver, Stockpiler or Hoarder?

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saving stockpiling hoardingStuff, stuff, stuff. We all have it. Some of us more than others. Buy how do you know if you have so much stuff that it might be a problem?

We can all justify why we have so much stuff and often we will argue that what we are doing is financially savvy. You need to buy things to save money, right?

But are you in denial? We have all probably seen the television shows about hoarders and figure if our lives are not that bad we don't really have to worry. But as an antique dealer part of my trade was buying from estates and making appraisals and some of the homes were eye popping in what I saw.

There is a difference between a person that saves, stockpiles and hoards but it can be a slippery slope and you need to know if you are in danger of becoming out of control.

Making Any Tissue Box a Designer Box

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Make any tissue box a designer box
It is the little things in life that matter and you can even be fussy about such things as how your tissue box looks.

While it might sound a bit over the top, having a garish or just plain ugly tissue box in a room that you have spent a lot of time and effort to look just right can be jarring.

I am the first to admit that I don't want to spend a lot of money on tissues so we only buy on sale and usually in bulk.

But I have a very simple way of making the ugly generic tissue boxes look better.

Money Saving on School Supplies

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Money saving on school suppliesIt is wonderful to start school with all new supplies but if you have to buy them for several children it can become incredibly expensive. You want to save money and they want to spend it.

Not everything that they need has to be brand spanking new, especially if you already have what you need at home.

But how do you get your kids to take last years supplies to school when tv and fliers are waving shiny new stuff at them?

Your money saving on school supplies could be easier than you think.

A Real Outlet Sale - Cambridge Towel Tent Sale

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Towel SaleI love outlet sales and on my continuous hunt to save money I am constantly disappointed in what most outlet sales now consist of.

With the development of outlet malls the real outlet sales have almost all but vanished. Businesses now often run a second cheaper line that they sell at outlet mall trying to fool the consumer. There truly is no real money saving.

But the real outlet sale has not totally disappeared! I delighted to share that Cambridge Towel still has it's once a year tent sale where the bargains are genuine.
Frugal or foolish saving money money saving
Are you saving money with your great thrifty ideas or are you making a lot of mistakes.

You think that you are money savvy and have the best ideas to save you wads of money. Are you really being frugal or are you being foolish by wasting your time, energy and money on ideas that don't really work? What money saving ideas are really mistakes?

 We can spot these money wasters in others but we can't always spot them in ourselves. 

Being frugal for many people is a lifestyle that they thoroughly enjoy. To squeeze the most out of every dollar a pleasure. But you really need to make sure that you truly are being frugal and not foolish with your money. Saving money and money saving can have a lot of pitfalls for some.

How to Get Your Canadian Passport Faster

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How to get a Canadian passport quicklyCanada is a country of 33 million people and we all seem to love to travel.  Almost 60 percent of us own passports.

A Canadian passport allows you, as a Canadian citizen, to exit and enter Canada  to and from other countries. Issued by Passport Canada they are valid for 5 years (unless it is a child under 3, they are valid for 3 years).

Since travel rules have changed so much in the last 10 years they are the easiest document to own to prove citizenship and can be one of the documents required if you are traveling into the US.

Passport Canada is trying to make it easy to get a passport and are trying to make the long lines at the Passport office disappear. 

Butchart Gardens Canada - Gardening Ispiration

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Butchart GardensI love looking at gardens to draw inspiration on what I should do with my own little patch of dirt.

Butchart Gardens in British Columbia Canada was amazing for me to visit. 

Open year round it is always spectacular but I took these photos in August a few years back.

The original story of how the garden was conceived and created reminds me that you can turn almost anything into a thing a beauty if you put your mind to it.

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