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Save Moving Costs

Moving presents several costs. Before the moving truck and gasoline is involved, people have to consider the cost of packing materials, such as tape, boxes, styrofoam, pads and other materials. It may be worthwhile to request empty boxes from a major store that stocks their inventory at night as they are easy to pick up. After moving, people have to consider whether there are repairs to be made in the new home. Also, when people set up their new utility accounts, some come with a set-up fee. It makes sense that it’s important to save costs where possible.

If the total cost for moving furniture would cost less than buying new furniture, it makes sense to transport it. However, there are stores like DirectBuy where it may be more cost-efficient to sell the old furniture, avoid the cost of transporting it, and buy new furniture. The larger moving trucks are, the more expensive they become. Also, the additional weight on a moving truck means extra gasoline usage as well.

Saving costs where possible can help a person in a new city explore it by going out at night, making trips to the supermarket and trips to the nearby deli or coffee shop. It’s important to get acquainted with the new city or town to become adjusted. This may be difficult to do with little to no money. In addition, while people are starting new jobs, their pay may be delayed. Saving money while moving can help to cover expenses while waiting for a payday.

Care in the Kitchen: Knife Safety Tips for Cutting and Sharpening


A sharp and sturdy knife is a food preparer’s best tool, yet cutlery items are dangerous implements when used improperly. Pay great attention to cutting technique and sharpening tips to avoid accidents and operate an efficient kitchen.


Free of Distraction


One wielding a knife needs to keep free of distraction and maintain concentration. Multitasking dilutes much-needed attention and leads to accidents and cut fingers. Respect the knife and give it 100% of your prepping attention.


Keep ‘Em Sharp


Contrary to intuition, a sharp knife is considerably safer than one with a dulled blade. Dull blades require more effort and sometimes slip off food surfaces. Contrarily, sharpened blades cut through surfaces with minimal effort and less opportunity to make a mistake.


Cut Away


Covered within the first hour of ‘Using a Blade 101,’ always cut away rather than toward yourself when using or sharpening a blade. If the blade is facing away from you, there’s no way it can inflict injury. Also, don’t ever use a body part to ‘check’ the sharpness of a blade. Keep blades sharp at all times and never use a body part in a testing process!


Not for That


Yes, knives could come in handy in a number of alternative situations; it could help tear open a piece of mail or accompany a Halloween prop. However, blades belong in the kitchen and reserved for preparing foods; don’t use sharp knives for other purposes.


Find the Right Knife


Technically, a sharp knife can address a wide range of foods, yet using the wrong knife for a task is asking for trouble. A number of knifes proliferate chef sets since different blades are used for distinct purposes. For example, a paring knife makes it much easier to dice fruits and vegetables. The task could be performed with a larger 8-inch knife, yet invites opportunity for making a mistake.


Let it Fall


Do not try to catch a dropped knife or attempt to save it from falling by pressing your body against the counter. Both scenarios lead to injury. Contrarily, a dropped knife only needs to be washed, which is not such a horrible consequence.


No Horsing Around


As obvious as not using on your body parts, do not use a knife to play with friends or family members or pretend you are a psycho killer. Please resist the temptation to act like a child (why children aren’t allowed near knives) and place yourself and others in unnecessary danger.


Different Sharpening


A number of methods sharpen a dull blade, including using a stone or sharpening knife. However, like using each blade, you’ll need to know how to address each kind of blade. For example, a serrated edge is manufactured at a different angle than other blades and requires a different sharpening technique. Find the right sharpening tools to complete the task and keep your kitchen safe.


The kitchen is a place to prepare delicious treats and not a destination for avoidable disasters. Mind the above knife tips and practice safety each time you’re in the kitchen.


Michael Perry is a busy dad and husband who likes to spend a lot of time in his kitchen. An avid cook, he enjoys writing about new techniques for aspiring chefs on the web. You can read his informative articles on many of today’s top websites.




Old Factory Candles are Perfect Holiday Gifts


One of my very favorite things about the holidays is being able to go out and stock up on all the exclusive seasonal scents that hit the shelves around Halloween. Cinnamon, Apple Pie, Pumpkin Spice, Winter Evergreen, the list goes on and on! Every year those scents and many more fly off the shelves in the form of items like Febreeze, Wall Plug-ins, Potpourri and more. People go nuts for them! My item of choice of course are the candles.  They’re decorative, pretty and unlike with spray scents you never have to worry about releasing too many fumes into the air when you light them.

To further my love for seasonal scents I was recently given the chance to work with Old Factory to review their wonderful scented candles! Old Factory is an Amazon Exclusive company, meaning you can’t find them anywhere else on earth but Amazon. Exclusively on Amazon, makes it sound so trendy, like an Amazon VIP or something. Just kidding but hey, at least you can say you have quality, exclusive scents that not everyone in Target or Bed Bath and Beyond has in their carts.

Each Candle from Old Factory is hand-poured, made of high quality soy and burn clean without leaving the sooty residue we all hate. They also burn evenly which is something that I think we can all appreciate. After all, who wants a candle that only burns in one place and leaves those hideous wax craters in the center? Not this girl, that’s for sure. And, being an ex candle maker I know a good candle when I find one, and these are little gems.  My favorite of the ones I got was the pumpkin spice … YUM!


If you’re looking for a great alternative to those Target brands you find yourself buying each year then head over to Old Factory on Amazon and check out their line of scented candles. There are a dozen great scents to choose from and the best part is that they’re made in the US so you know exactly what you’re getting without the worry of outsourcing.


Here’s a few helpful tips on how to get the most out of your candle experience:

1. We recommend burning your candles for 1 to 3 hours at a time, and then letting them cool an hour before burning again. We’ve found that this helps to extend the burning life of the candle.

2. We’ve carefully formulated these candles so they are pleasing to smell but not overpowering. These candles burn great individually in small rooms, or you can burn 2 at a time in a larger room. We’ve grouped the fragrances in each gift set to complement each other nicely so you can pair them up for a great-smelling combination.

3. A little bit of wick management will help your candles last longer. Make sure to keep the wick trimmed to a reasonable length. And if you notice that the wick is starting to lean against the side of the jar, use a spoon to carefully reposition the wick to the center of the jar while the wax is warm and pliable.

Connect with Old Factory  on Amazon!


Now for the super fun part.. The Giveaway.     Enter to win a 3 pack of Old Factory Candles, valued at $25.00.    You choose the scent pack.

Open to US Only.   18+    Ends December 15th 2014 at 11:59pm CST.  Enter using the Giveaway Tools form below.


New but Old Living Room Furniture


New but Old Living Room Furniture

Welcome to my living room.    This is my husbands favorite place in the whole house.  It is our gathering room, meeting room, most nights our dining room, TV room, and so much more.  And now, it is our memory room.   We recently sold our couch and took this couch and chair from Tony’s Mom, because she was moving into a rental unit we own and she didn’t want this much furniture.  I have been in love with this couch, chair and ottoman since she got it back in 1999/2000.  It is a very well built set and still has many years left in it.  It is hard for my hubby and I to find furniture we like as all the new stuff is so puffy and big and made poorly but priced highly.  So, this fits us, and our home just right.


The brown recliner we have had for about 15 years, and we acquired it from his Grandma when she passed (RIP Agnes).  You see Nellie there taking a stand on the recliner, claiming it as her’s.  Then off to the side is a wooden rocker, that was Tony’s Dads and we acquired that when he passed as well.  (RIP Art).    The little table between the 2 chairs, is made from a hunk of wood Tony found, and it is super cool and one of a kind.  The 2 deer heads on the walls, are ours.  My first buck and one of Tony’s largest bucks.

I am not one of those girls who need or wants all new stuff.  I love old stuff, decorate with old, vintage, retro, lodge, etc., items and love it!    The only things in the room that are “new” or bought new was the rug (and that needs to be replaced again) and my other lamps.  Those lamps were bases I had from other lamps and I put new lodge style shades on them.   And no lodge home is complete without some fake trees to add that outdoor feel.   I add lights to mine for the holiday’s and some homemade ornies from some prim gals I know.

Our living room means the world to us, in more ways than the typical.  It has been the room for long discussion, tender moments, tears, laughs, secrets, a little lovin (hehehe) and so much more.  This living room, used to be a bedroom and we ripped out a wall between the living room (old one) and bedroom to make it bigger.  So, aside from all the hard work and money put into it, it holds a special place in our hearts because our family lives here in the memories we have made and the furniture we use.


Do you have a room that is special to you?   Do you like old or new goodies for your home?  Have you kept something from a family member that has passed?  Share your thoughts with me.

Disclosure  ~  Thanks for visiting Living Smart Girl.  Some of the links in my posts are affiliate links, which means when clicked you help support Living Smart Girl so I can continue to bring you great posts :)    Every click is much appreciated!

Not a Pretty Sight This Morning

Warning.. the images in this post are very graphic!!


I was awaken this morning at about 7 am, to our front door shutting.  I figured hubby was going out hunting so I got up to look out my bedroom window.  Hubby was standing in the yard, and seen me in the window and he pointed down at the lake (which is frozen).  I wasn’t sure what he was pointing at, except I seen a huge lump of something greyish black and didn’t know what it was.   We are about 125 yards from where the lump on the lake was.   I headed downstairs to the kitchen window and grabbed the binoculars to see what he was pointing at.  YIKES!!   It is a dead deer, on the lake.   Not a pretty sight to wake too.

Hubby headed to the lake to check it out.  Took some pictures so we could share on FB and with family and friends.  I know, gross.  But, the wolf population is large where we live and this just proves that something needs to be done.  This was one single wolf that took down this approximately 200# buck.  I realize it’s all natural, but not 125 yards from my house.  I have animals here, as do all our neighbors.  They recently trapped over 11 wolf pups right across the road from our house, and relocated them.  The deer population is down, and wolf population is up.  They issue wolf tags here, but wolves are very smart and don’t generally come out till dark so it is hard to shoot one.  I am sure for those who are not from area’s like where we live, you will fight for the wolf rights.   I don’t think any animal has more rights than another.  I just know that when one is sitting in a deer stand all day, and you don’t see deer, but see many many wolves.. that is to many wolves in an area.

Yes, wolves have to eat.  Yes, it is the way the chain of nature goes.  Animals kill, and eat other animals to survive.  We are all animals and we all eat meat and in order to eat meat, it has to be killed.   I get that.  That isn’t what this is about.  This is about wolves being to close for comfort.   I know if a wolf didn’t kill this deer, a hunter most likely would have or it might have been hit by a car.  Fine and dandy… that is life.   But, I have dogs, who have to be outside to do their business and I don’t like that a wolf is in the area.  Where there is one, there are many.

When I was a kid, our neighborhood had a wolf issue.   There were wolves taking small dogs right from yards.  At least 8 dogs in the area were killed by wolves.  The DNR said a wolf will never come near anything with human scent. Well, our little dog Kakeena, slept with me every night, under my covers.   My mom took her from my room one morning and put her on her tie out to go potty, at 5 am.  My Mom heard a yelp, she ran to the door and opened it to have a wolf, with Kakeena in it’s mouth, stare right back at her and then take off around the house.  My Mom screamed for my Dad, who grabbed a gun and took off running out the back door after the wolf but being it was dark he lost sight of it.   So, our poor little dog became a meal for the wolf.  Ours was just one of the many little dogs in the area, with human scent on it, to be taken.  So, a wolf will attack something with human scent, if hungry enough or if in an area where they should not be.

Here are the images of the deer kill… proceed with caution ~

deerkill4 deerkill3 deerkill2 deerkill1

Stop and Smell the Holiday’s with #FebrezeHoliday Collection


Disclosure ~ This is a sponsored post on behalf of SheSpeaks/Febreze.   All opinions are 100% that of Living Smart Girl’s.
@SheSpeaksUp  @Febreze_Fresh.  

Stop and Smell the Holiday’s with #FebrezeHoliday Collection

With cooler days brings the thought of the Holiday’s and with the Holiday’s brings the smells we all enjoy and look forward to all year long.  The smells of apple pie’s baking, fresh cookies warm from the oven, spiced pine cones in a dish on the table, pine smell coming from the Christmas tree, the crisp cool air with the smell of fallen leaves…. Mmmmm…take it all in.   I know for me, all these smells bring back many memories of growing up and enjoying the Holiday’s with family and friends around.   Sometimes, I would give anything to go back to those days.

I love to have my home smell good, and I know I don’t always have time to be baking so I like to do things that are simple.  Like, plugging in a Febreze NOTICEables and let that do all the hard work.   Have you ever tried the Febreze scents for your home or car?  What scents do you enjoy using this time of year?   Do any certain scents remind you of special things?   The #FebrezeHoliday collection is filled with amazing scents.  Like Apple Tart, Toasted Almond, Frosted Pine, Sugared Cranberry and Vanilla Latte.   So far, my favorite is the Vanilla Latte, with the Sugared Cranberry coming in second.  I generally love anything vanilla, or coffee so that is why I chose the vanilla latte.   It actually reminds me of walking into my Grandma’s house, because she always had the coffee on, and was baking sugar cookies.  It really smells a lot like that.

This fun Febreze Holiday box was so cute, but life has been so busy that I haven’t had a chance to make any of the fun stuff that was included on the index cards in the little recipe box.   Yummy recipes like, Mini Apple Tarts, Cocoa Dusted Almonds, Pinecone Cheese Ball, Cranberry Sauce or Gingerbread Cookies in a Jar.   I think the Gingerbread Cookies in a Jar will be on my list to make, and give as gifts.  How fun!  There is also directions for some crafts, like a Sugared Cranberry Garland, an Apple Tabletop Tree, some Almond Topiaries, a Pinecone Wreath, Coffee Filter Trees, an Apple Centerpiece, Acorn Ornament Ball, Clothespin Reindeer (I have made these before), Mitten Ornaments, and Coffee Scrub.   I love coffee scrub and think this is another one on my list to make for gifts.  I just love making my own gifts, as I feel it gives gift giving a very personal touch.


Do you make crafts for the Holidays for your home, or to give as gifts?   What have you made?  I would love to see pictures of your crafted items. Some of my favorite crafts to make for my gift giving, is candles and soap, bath gels, cute throw pillows, hard rock candy and suckers, and of course cookies and mini loaves of pumpkin, banana, or chocolate bread.   If I was to make a gift for you, what would you like to get ?

You can check out Febreze on their social networks ~

Facebook  ~  Twitter

Cooking for the Holidays with Appliances from Best Buy

Disclosure ~ The reviewer (Living Smart Girl) has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free.

Cooking Campaign Range 2

Cooking for the Holidays with Appliances from Best Buy
@BestBuy #holidayprep


One of my favorite times of the year, (not the weather here in Minnesota) is the holiday time because that means family gathered all together, good food, memories and just lots of fun that is so needed since life is so busy.  And, I am one who loves to host the festivities at my home. But, even though I love hosting, I get frustrated with my meal prep because I have old appliances and it can cause cooking frustrations.

Now, if I could sit on Santa’s lap, what I would wish for would be a new kitchen with new appliances that would make my cooking time more enjoyable and productive.   And since the holidays are a hectic time for everyone not only for buying gifts but also for cooking and entertaining in the days leading up to and including the holidays.  I would like to make cooking easier with the latest appliance technology including induction cooking that enables you to boil water in less than two minutes like the Frigidaire FGIF3061NF plus induction reduces clean up time because spills don’t burn on.  This Frigidaire range also includes a convection oven which circulates the air in the oven for quicker baking time.  Another great innovation within cooking are double ovens that let you cook two dishes at two different temperatures at once like the Whirlpool WGG555S0BS but still fits within the space of a standard range.  All of this technology will allow you to get the food the way you want it prepared and saves you time so you can spend it with the ones you love.  Learn more at 
Now if I had this appliance I would rock the holiday meal, have extra time to spend with my family and be the queen of my kitchen.

My meal usually consists of a turkey, a ham, mashed potatoes, corn, stuffing, a couple pies, rolls, sweet potatoes, relish tray, cranberries, and lots of cookies which are always made ahead of time.   My sister and Aunt and myself get together right before Thanksgiving and do a huge cookie bake, and oh how it would be awesome to have the Frigidaire FGIF3061NF in my home to make our cookie baking go faster, and smoother.  It is hard to bake the amount of cookies we do, with a single oven, so having a double oven would rock the cookie baking experience.    So, between the cookie baking and the holiday meals new appliances would be a perfect thing for Santa (or hubby… *cough* *cough*) to bring me.

Do you do a lot of holiday cooking?  Tell me your biggest obstacle during your holiday meal prep.

Cooking Campaign Range



Enhance Your Home Movie-viewing Experience: With A Home Cinema System

Enhance Your Home Movie-viewing Experience: With A Home Cinema System

Movie time in the home provides a good opportunity to spend quality time with loved ones and have an exciting experience. Having a sophisticated home cinema system will greatly enhance your home movie-viewing experience as it helps recreate the cinema atmosphere in your own private place. Once you get your selection right, this system can take your movie-viewing experience to a whole new level with special sounds and effects that would have been missed when relying on just your TV to produce them.

Why Are These Systems Special for Movie-Viewing?

Without mincing words, the main thing that makes home cinema systems perfect for movie-viewing is their ability to produce cinema-quality surround sound. What is that? As you may have noticed, when watching a movie at a cinema, the associated sound is projected to you from different angles to give you the impression of being right in the mix of the action. This is what is referred to as surround sound. You can recreate this experience when watching TV and videos in your home when you have one of these systems.

Speaker Systems

There are different types of home cinema, namely: 2.1, 5.1 and 7.1 speaker systems. These designations describe systems with two, five and seven speakers respectively with a subwoofer. The 5.1 system is the most common configuration since 2.1 and 7.1 systems produces effects that are either insufficient or excessive for many private spaces.

How to Setup

Information for setup often comes with a system when you buy one. The speakers are placed in strategic sections of your room, with the left and right speakers required to be placed at equal distance from your sitting area. The auto setup feature can be used to determine the appropriate positions for the speakers. A speaker is placed either above or below the TV to take care of most conversation coming from it. There is usually no restriction on where the subwoofer can be placed.

Getting a home cinema system could be the best decision you can make when you wish to take the cinema to your home. The system will create the feeling of seemingly being with the actors as you are able to pick out virtually all sounds and effects. You are missing out on awesome movie-viewing experience without one of these systems.

Can You Smell Fall? #FebrezeFall

Febreze1 Disclosure ~  This is a sponsored post on behalf of SheSpeaks and Febreze.  All opinions are 100% that of Living Smart Girl’s.
#FebrezeFall  @Walmart  @SheSpeaksUp.
Facebook   –  Twitter

Can you smell fall in the air?    I sure can and I have to say, even though I hate winter, I do love fall and all the prettiness that it brings.  I love the changing leaves, the cooler nights and the smell in the air.  With Febreze you can get that fall smell in your home and car and bring some fall ideas to life with their great tips for recipes, home decor and activities.

I got a fun Scentspiration box from Febreze with the Home Harvest Collection inside.  Isn’t this cute!! It is a little farm house/barn box and filled with a cute recipe card box, recipe cards with great recipes, activities and home decor ideas, some fun Febreze goodies like plug in air fresheners and one for my car as well.   I put the plug in in my basement to help bring some fall smells there, and stuck the car one in my new vehicle.   Have you picked up some Febreze in the fall scents to use in your home or car?   What ones are your favorites?  Do you like different ones in each room or the same thru the whole house?   I like to keep the same thru the whole house generally.  When you think of fall, what scent comes to mind ?

These cards are so fun that came in the kit.  Great recipes like Iced Coffee Float, Sugared Cranberries, Oven Bakes Smores, Roasted Pears, & Creamed Corn.   Have you ever made any of these?    I have not, but think I will have to try the Iced Coffee Float.   How about toasted almonds?  Ever tried those.  I haven’t but just thinking about them, I want to.

If you like to decorate for fall the cards have some fun ideas.  Like, how to make an Acorn Centerpiece, Lollipot Bouquet, Cranberry Tree, Leaf Wreath, or Lightbulb Pear.  The Acorn Centerpiece and Lightbulb Pears sound fun an like something I would decorate with.  What kind of fall decorations do you have that you made?  I would love to see pics, if you have made something fun you want to share.  Do you use Febreze when making your fun decorations ?

Fall means more play time out in the yard for many, as the bugs are less and for some, the weather is more enjoyable.  (Those in southern states).  There are many fun activities one can enjoy in the fall.  Gather some of your girlfriends together, or even the kids and try making one of these cool things ~ Coasters, Burlap Bows, Owl Almonds, Spiced Oranges, or Whistling with an Acorn Top.  Do you enjoy some fun activities in the fall?  Tell me about them.

No matter what you are doing, the Febreze Home Harvest Collection can help you get in the mood and get your home ready for fall.    And, don’t forget about the fact that Febreze truly eliminates odors so your company will only notice the fresh smell of fall in your home.
See how cute my Scentspiration box from Febreze with the Home Harvest Collection is.





Disclosure ~  This is a sponsored post on behalf of SheSpeaks and Febreze.  All opinions are 100% that of Living Smart Girl’s.
#FebrezeFall  @Walmart  @SheSpeaksUp.
Facebook   –  Twitter





DIY Ideas to Decorate Silk Pillow Covers

DIY Ideas to Decorate Silk Pillow Covers


Thinking about purchasing silk pillow covers for your bedding? Wow! That’s nice. There are a number of benefits of using silk as your bedding material because the fabric has certain properties that help you live with better health. For those who have a soft and sensitive skin, silk is recommended. Moreover, even those who are allergic to dust should sleep on natural or organic bedding.


The only problem is that silk bedding is a little more expensive as compared to the other type of bedding available in the market. Definitely, the more beautiful and appealing one you purchase, the more expensive it is going to get. So, how do you make sure that your silk bedding looks classy yet it turns out to be an affordable deal for you? Listed are some DIY ideas that you can use to decorate your plain silk pillow covers and sheets and make them look worth good money.




  1. Using paint and brush: In order to give your silk pillows an awesome facelift you can use your fabric paints and a regular painting brush. The best way to go about this DIY idea is to first finalize the kind of look you want to give to the pillows. Paint interesting scenery using different colors. You can also sketch out before painting.
  1. Finger Painting: One of the simplest of ways to make something interesting is using finger     print or painting. Dip your thumb or fingertip inside organic fabric paint and make interesting patterns out of it. From birds to trees to abstract shapes, there is a lot to make on the fabric of the silk pillow.


  1. Stencil Magic: Make a stencil out of brown paper and use it for decorating your silk     pillow covers. You need to fix the stencil on the pillow cover and then using a toothbrush, sprinkle fabric paint on either the empty space that shows the fabric from beneath the outer frame of stencil     or fill the inner portion of stencil. Both ways, the outcome is     pretty cool.


  1. Embroider: If you do not want to use paint on your silk pillow cases, here is another thing thatcan be done. Instead of using paint you can use your thread and needle to make interesting shapes and things on your pillow covers.


  1. Felt and Fur: If paint     and thread don’t appeal, you can instead use felt and fur. Cut the felt and the fur in tiny piece and attach them in different shapes on the pillow cases.

These are some of the ways in which you can decorate your silk pillow cases and make them look prettier. There are a lot many ways of giving plain silk bed sheets and pillow cases an interesting look. You can read about the same from different craft books or on the internet. Have a fun time and also create value – that’s called art.