How To Update Your Dining Room In Under 20 Minutes

Here's a quick and simple way to make your dining room table look amazing.  In this post, Jenn shares how she was able to update her kitchen table in under 20 minutes after her Ikea trip. #shoppingtrip #organizing #organizedhome #ikea #diningroomtable #cleanhome

If you've been following along through my January IKEA shopping trip then you've seen my shopping trip, my haul, and finally today I'm sharing my first transformation.  

My dining room has never been how I've wanted it.  With kids, most rooms are.  Since my girls are older now, I thought it was time to update my dining room.  

I wanted to start small to see how it would go.  I wanted to walk into my dining room and feel happy, accomplished, and proud of what I've done.  

Let's begin.

I started out with just my table.  I do like to use a tablecloth on my table to help preserve my table, for easy clean-up, and it helps with the decor.  However, I the tablecloth and napkins just didn't do anything.  

They seemed out of place and miss matched.

Dining room update 1.jpg

So I changed out the tablecloth and napkins.  But I didn't just end there.  I purchased a few orchids at IKEA and some planters to hold them in.  I also purchased a table runner.

I really like the bowl with the lemons so I kept that where it was.  

Here's what I came up with:

Dining room update 2.jpg

I really liked how much it changed the room.  But I didn't stop there.  I pulled out some off-white napkins and my silver beaded napkin ring holders and added them to the table.  

Here's how that came out:

Dining room update 4.jpg

I couldn't believe how great my mismatched table looked.  So I went a little overboard and grabbed the good dinnerware and added that to the table.

Here's how that looked:

Dining room update 5.jpg

So yes, like I said I went a little overboard.  But I was so happy to see my table look like a "grown-up" table.  

I made sure to make a special dinner so we could eat dinner at our newly decorated table.

Dining room update 6.jpg

In a matter of just a few minutes, I went from my old mismatched dining room table to a nicely matched dining room table that I made me happy to look at.

The entire project cost me under $50 and took me under 20 minutes to do.

Dining room update 7.jpg

I hope this post has inspired you to think outside the box a little and create a beautiful dining room table without having to break the bank or your budget.

Keep a lookout for the next project that I will be revealing.  If you want to check out what Katie with Organizing Mom's came up with during her IKEA shopping trip you can read that here.  In the meantime, you can take a look at the first 2 IKEA posts I shared recently.  Thank you so much for stopping by, have an amazing day.


What I achieved with my IKEA Haul

January ikea haul.jpg

If you read the post before about My January IKEA Shopping Trip then you know that IKEA is my favorite store (you can click here to read that post).  I call it the Organizer's Disneyland.  My good friend Katie with Organizing Moms and I headed up north on a field trip while the husbands were at work and the kids were in school.    

In this post, I'm going to show you everything that I bought while at IKEA.  So I guess you could call this my IKEA haul post.

Make sure to check back soon for more posts about what I did with my haul and how I was able to transform my home.

Let's begin.  

I first want to say it was really hard for me not to buy everything I saw there.  I felt that I was quite disciplined this time around by spending under $100!

There was one item I wanted to buy but they were out of stock.  I will probably be purchasing that the next time I go up.  

Which item?

Ikea shopping 6.jpg

They were out of stock of this plant stand.  I thought this would be perfect in my dining room under the window.  It would be the perfect place for me to store my veggie starts before they go into the garden.  Hopefully, I can grab this next month!

So what did I get?  Let's begin!

This time I really wanted to focus on small projects.  This trip was my inspiration for future projects.  As you can see below, I didn't go overboard.

A couple of orchid plants, an aloe plant, shelf liners was the start of my shopping haul.

At $0.49 I couldn't leave this pots.  They were perfect for me to add my orchids and aloe plants to.

One thing that I've been needing to do for so long is adding shelf liner to my kitchen cupboards.  Since I didn't pre-measure my drawers and cupboards I know I will be needing more.  I got 2 sets to get me started.

Ikea haul 3.jpg

I loved these little chocolate molds and they were marked down to $0.49 so I needed to add that to my haul for sure!  

I knew coming in that I wanted to update my dining room table so I purchased this tablecloth and table runner to do just that.

Ikea haul 4.jpg

No house can have enough spray bottles.  I like to have them in every bathroom so you can quickly clean the shower right after you get out.  This helps with soap scum and mildew.  I'll be creating a post about this in the future.

You can't beat the price either.  Another markdown to $0.49!  Yes, I grabbed 3!

Ikea haul 5.jpg

Finally, I purchased some chalk.  The other day I bought some chalkboard paint at Target to redo my spices.  I tried to use chalkboard markers but it just didn't work so I'm going to give these a try.  I'll be creating a post about that coming soon.

Ikea haul 6.jpg

As you can see I was able to restrain myself from buying up the entire warehouse.  Check back soon to see how I was able to put my haul to use.  

If you haven't checked out Katie with Organizing Mom's post yet to see what she bought and what projects she came up with I encourage you to do so!  You can see them here.

I want to thank you so much for stopping by, make sure you check out the transformation posts that will be added very soon!

Have an amazing day!


My January IKEA Shopping Trip

In this post, Jenn shares her January shopping trip through IKEA as she is updating her home room by room.  Become inspired and get an inside look at how she's going to update her home. #organizing #IKEA #shoppingtrip #organizedhome #Theoverwhelmedbusymom #ikeahaul  

One of my favorite stores is an hour and a half from my home.  The fact that there's so much traffic makes it something that I only do once in a blue moon.  However, this year I'll be heading up to my favorite store once a month because I'm updating my home one room at a time.

I thought it would be a perfect opportunity for me to share with you what I'm up to.  So, in this post, I'm going to be sharing my January IKEA shopping trip with you.  This time I was able to go along with a dear friend of mine, Katie with Organizing Moms.

It was the perfect day to go.  It was raining and we had the store almost to ourselves!  This is Katie and I before we walked into an Organizers Disneyland.

Ikea shopping 1.jpg

Our IKEA recently remodeled their store so there are two stories.  The top floor had all of the displays, rooms, and cafe' and the bottom floor was the marketplace.  

We were in an organizers paradise!

Ikea shopping 2.jpg

My mind was in overdrive, figuring out what I can do with everything.  Like the above picture.  This shelf unit was a lot more functional than the normal cube shelf units.  I wanted this so bad!

I love to drink tea.  When I have friends and family over.  Having a cute serving tray for the occasion is exactly what I need.

I love how adding an orchid to a tray and putting it on the kitchen counter adds just a nice rich feel to the room.  

Ikea shopping 4.jpg

Creating functional space on an empty wall is awesome.  I love how clean and organized this wall looks.  By adding an organized space on the wall it frees up your counters so your room doesn't feel so cluttered.

Ikea shopping 5.jpg

I fell in love with this shelf.  I had the perfect place inside my home for this.  Since I start my seeds inside, this would be a perfect place for me to store my starts before they are added to the garden!

Ikea shopping 6.jpg

Once we hit the kitchen section I felt like I had died and gone to organizing heaven.  The cupboards and drawers were so perfectly organized.  I wanted to bring all of this home with me!

I know this is exactly what my kitchen needs.  Just think, every time a drawer or cupboard is opened you know exactly what is there.  No moving things out of the way or guessing that it might be there.  You just open and know!

Ikea shopping 8.jpg

I knew I was in love with this kitchen!  The lighting, the counters, the organized cupboards and drawers.  Again, I wanted to bring this room home with me.

Ikea shopping 9.jpg
Ikea shopping 11.jpg

For smaller kitchens with an open wall adding a shelf unit will help with storing cereals, grains, cookbooks, and so much more.  

Ikea shopping 12.jpg
Ikea shopping 13.jpg

How many kitchens have this problem?  A small section that is too small to store anything but a bottle or two of wine and some cookbooks.  I loved this and when I go to redo my kitchen I'm going to be adding a small shelf so I can store my cookbooks and other small items.

Ikea shopping 15.jpg

Below are a few other set-ups that I loved.  More wall storage to free up your counters.  A perfect little tea nook, and what about storing your spices above your cooktop. 

I have to hand it to IKEA.  They really do know how to think outside the box when it comes to storage in small spaces.

Ikea shopping 14.jpg
Ikea shopping 16.jpg
Ikea shopping 17.jpg

I hope you enjoyed my January IKEA shopping trip.  During this whole series, I'm going to show you what I purchased and how I implemented it into my home.  I hope that this series will help inspire you to organize your home.

I want to thank you so much for stopping by!  Have an amazing day and check back for What I Achieved With My IKEA Haul!  

Also, if you'd like to see more about our shopping trip through Katie's perspective, head over to see her post at OrganizingMoms.


How to quickly freshen up your home with no effort

Please note that this post does contain affiliate links.  What that means is at no cost to you if you make a purchase I may receive a small commission and that goes to help pay for website maintenance and coffee in my cup so I can continue to bring you tutorials on how to organize and clean your home!  You can read my full disclosure here.

Home freshen up.png

We are in the dead of winter and it can be hard to make your home feel fresh.  The windows are closed, the blinds rarely open, and it can just seem like your home feels dark and stale.  

In this post, I'm going to share some tips with you to help you quickly freshen up your home with little to no effort.  These tips won't take too long and you don't have to go out and buy new things.

After trying these tips you and your home are going to feel nice and refreshed.

I've also put together a free checklist so you can freshen up your home with me!  Click the button below to grab your free checklist.

I live in the Pacific Northwest and what that means in the winter it is dark, cold, wet, and miserable.  The sun rises around 7:30 and sets at 4:40.  The high temperature is lucky to hit 45 degrees F.  As you can see, we find ourselves cooped up in the house and our home stays closed up too.  

That's why I've come up with some solutions so I'm able to remove the stale cooped up air and quickly freshen up my home.   So let's get to my list!

Light a candle or two

On those wet, gross, don't want to get out of bed kind of days I like to light a candle or two so I can remove the stale closed up smell and feeling that happens.

Believe it or not, lighting a candle helps me get up and move around on those days I'd rather throw the covers over my head.

These are my favorite candles to use.  The great thing is you have a drinking cup to use after you enjoy the candles!


There's not a better smell than freshly baked bread, cookies, or muffins.  This smell really makes your home smell homey.  The great news is, once you finish baking you've got a tasty treat for you and your family to enjoy!

Open the shades and open the windows a crack

By opening the shades and opening the window a crack you'll be able to quickly cycle through the air in your home.  

I try doing this at least once a week.  I shut off the heater and set the timer for 15 minutes.  I open up all of the windows and allow the air to cycle through.

Once the 15 minutes are up, I shut the window, keep the blinds open, and turn the heat back on.  This is the most effective way to freshen up your home.

Add essential oils to the filters

About once a month I will drop some essential oils to our HVAC filter.  I will switch up the combos I use.  For the winter time I use a lot of cinnamon, the spring I like to use floral scent combos and so on.

If you'd like to learn more about the combos I use, you can download the free Home Freshen Up Checklist.  In this checklist, I share some of my favorite essential oil combos!

Every time the heat or AC comes on the air passes through that filter giving a pleasant scent to fill your home without having to do much.  

Below are some different options of my favorite brand!

Wipe down counters and do the dishes

Nothing freshens up the home more than doing a little cleaning.  Wiping down counters and doing the dishes makes a huge impact.

Making sure that the sink is clear and clean and the counters are clutter free and wiped down will make you feel so good every time you walk into the kitchen (well at least it makes me feel good!).

In conclusion

If you feel like your home is a little stale and you need a quick refresh there are a few things you can do that will quickly refresh your home.  Lighting a candle, opening some windows, baking a yummy treat, using essential oils, or even doing a little cleaning will make you and your home feel refreshed.

If you haven't downloaded the free checklist yet, you can do so by clicking the button below!

I would love to know in the comments below, what type of things do you do to quickly freshen up your home?  

I want to thank you so much for stopping by, have an amazing day!


How To Save Time In The Kitchen With Your Crockpot

Crockpot time savers.jpg

If you are in need of ways to save time in the kitchen then it's time to look at your crockpot for help.  In this post, I'm going to share how you can save time in the kitchen with your crockpot.  

It's important to me and most moms to provide healthy, home-cooked meals for their family.  I typically don't share recipes on my blog because our family is quite different than most with all of our eating limitations it can be hard to find recipes that everyday people will eat.

However, with winter in full swing, it's a great time to pull out the crockpot and save some time in the kitchen.  During the winter months in our area, the temperature doesn't usually get above 45 degrees so having a nice warm hearty meal is exactly what my family enjoys this time of the year.

The crockpot is really a set it and forget it type of cooking.  It's cooking that I have to say is my favorite.  In the morning when I'm making breakfast for everyone, I'll pull down the crockpot, chop some veggies, add the meat or bean/legumes I'll be using, and add the herbs and spices.  

Then I turn on the crockpot, set it for the desired amount of time and I've got dinner cooking at 7 am.  

It couldn't be easier.

Now the problem that you might be facing is, what are you going to cook.  Below I'm going to be sharing some of my family favorites with you!  These are meals that I make all of the time and the great thing is, there's enough for leftovers so I'm cooking two dinners in one!

For the vegetarian options our go-to crockpot meals are:

  • Split pea soup
  • Lentil soup
  • Many bean soup
  • Red beans and rice
  • Potato corn chowder
  • Minestrone soup

For the chicken options our go-to crockpot meals are:

  • Chicken noodle soup
  • Chicken cacciatore
  • Chicken enchiladas
  • Whole chicken and veggies
  • Chicken and wild rice soup
  • Chicken stew

So if you are looking for a way to save time and to provide a hearty home-cooked meal for your family it's time to pull out the crockpot.  

You'll be surprised by how much time you'll save, how much your family will love dinner, and how much money you'll be saving by eating in and eating leftovers.

I would love to know in the comments below, what are some of your go-to crockpot meals you prepare for your family?

I want to thank you so much for stopping by.  Below I've provided you with a few other posts that I thought you might enjoy!

Have an amazing day,