The Girliest Planner Supplies!

I can’t believe I have been away from the planner world since November! Especially for your girl, who has been planning since I was around ten years old!

So here’s the deal…I know a lot of YouTubers have similar backgrounds in their videos (especially the make up gurus) the backgrounds that are all white, with flowers, a candle burning, and touches of pink here and there but I’m not mad about it. What’s there to be mad about? It’s feminine and so pretty to the eye and the same goes for planner supplies. This entire haul I have on my channel embodies the word “girly” and honestly the color palette alone makes me want to paint my nails, do my hair, put on my make up, slip on some heels, put my cute new filofax in my purse and go out…to the Dollar Tree. Let’s face it, I don’t go anywhere else.

I love how creative I can be with my planners but I also love that I get to combine the art of scrapbooking and I’m super excited to have found this adorable planner from Michaels to add to my collection. I can’t wait to start decorating it and share with you all the spread themes I come up with.

Dollar Tree Valentine’s Day Shadow Box

Each year I make new decor and most of the time it’s material from the Dollar Tree. I have been shopping at the dollar tree for roughly 16 years now and each year they just keep getting better and better. Sadly, I know that’s not the case for every Dollar Tree location in the country, wish I could understand why each Dollar Tree gets different shipment but I assume it’s because not every single item is made from the Dollar Tree manufacturing company in VA, some items probably are wholesale purchased from other vendors who are trying to rid of it from their own store and perhaps it ends up at Dollar Tree. I don’t know, just an assumption on my part but I do know their seasonal holiday items are Dollar Tree branded and each year like I said I have to make myself new decor. And that’s how I build my decor without breaking the bank. If you’re just starting off and you have no Valentine’s Day decor to your name, don’t you worry girlfriend! I got you!

After all, that is why I started my YouTube channel. Because I wanted to bring cheap but expensive looking crafts to those on a budget or simply to educate that you don’t have to spend a lot of money on decor to get something beautiful.
And today on my YouTube channel, I shared my newest decor piece for Valentine’s Day: Shadow Box.
Video below if you want to check it out πŸ™‚

Floral Cake Stand

I didn’t start holiday diy’s until I met my daughter’s best friend’s mother. I can still remember my thoughts and reaction to seeing the lengths she went through to decorate for each and every holiday, big and small. I never once thought to decorate for any holiday other than the really big ones and to me that was basically Halloween and Christmas and a few things for Easter. Her name was Tracy and she’s married with four kids; two boys two girls. Plus a fish tank, a dog, and she always had people over at her house. I was envious for sure. Her house was always a mess, but like clock work she cleaned every Saturday, and went to the grocery store every Sunday. We loved to thrift shop together and that’s where I learned that cheaper items can be made to be beautiful. I remember she decorated for St. Patricks day and I mean the entire house. And quite honestly, I was blown away and quite honestly it sort of made me feel like a bad mom because I never once thought to decorate for my daughter. I always thought of decorating for me, thinking what would a little kid care? Maybe they do, maybe they don’t, but because it was just my daughter and I, I knew I had to start doing something to make memories for her. So I started decorating and I was thinking too much store bought like Tracy. But she didn’t have the time on her hands like I did so I started to make my own decor.
I only wish I would have met Tracy earlier on in life because by the time I made this discovery of decorating for holiday’s big and small or just for ANY reason at all, my daughter was already 11. But like they say “better late than never”.
And after all these years of decorating and making my own decor I still love every minute of it and after each decor I’m always so proud of my work. And I share it with all of you because everyone should know how something so cheap can be something so beautiful.
This is my first Valentine’s Day DIY of 2017 and of course it’s material from the Dollar Tree. You can watch the full tutorial on my YouTube Channel: CheapCraftyGirl.


The Beginning

I don’t know about you, but I have gone through many phases in my life. When I was in my early twenties I was busy raising my daughter…by myself. And at that time I barely made enough to pay the bills and put food on the table because daycare pretty much wanted an arm and a leg, know what I mean? If I start to think about how much I paid in daycare I would probably get sick.

So when I was first starting off as a mom I didn’t have the money to buy myself anything, let alone decor, but that didn’t change the fact that I WANTED those things. I wanted to provide a beautiful home for my daughter and I always worried about how the people I invited into my apartment would perceive the “decor” I did manage to scrape up. I remember our first apartment and by the time I was able to achieve that I had my very first real job at a mortgage company “stacking papers”. It was basically a process where I took a homebuyers file (that was YES real actual papers) and I would sort their documents in a standard order. This was all during the REFI BOOM back in the early 00’s before Subprime hit us hard. But I digress. My daughter was two years old so before my first apartment I lived with my mom. That wasn’t easy but I won’t go there.

When I moved into that first apartment, regardless that I had NO couch, hardly any kitchen utensils, no food in the fridge, it was still the best feeling in the world. Thinking back to the furniture I somehow managed to put into that apartment I honestly cannot remember how I got it, because I can tell you I didn’t buy it! I had two beds, one for me and one for my daughter and they were hand me downs. From who…I don’t know. Scary.

But when you are a single mother living check to check…that didn’t matter.

I had a TV in the living room that sat on the floor, again no clue where I got the TV from and only because I have a horrible memory. I do remember spending a weekend here and there with a friend who helped me “decorate” this was my PRE CheapCraftyGirl days. Ironically enough you would think that is how I became Crafty from a point in my life where I didn’t have money to spend so I had to find a way to be frugal. Nope. I had expensive taste then. I was in my twenties and I simply wanted my apartment to look like it came out of a home and garden’s magazine and I thought to achieve that look the only way to do it was to purchase already made decor from expensive shops like Pottery Barn and Pier 1 Imports. It’s funny how things change as you get older.

I didn’t start to get Crafty until I had a career change. I was so tired of riding the Mortgage wave, it was getting to a point where I was always afraid. Every time the market was great it was easy to be hired on and every time the market went down I was always one of the people that were let go or laid off even though I worked harder than anyone and I had an acute attention to detail AND I did my job in less than HALF the time it took others. I never quite understood what I was doing wrong. I loved how when Subprime happened the president helped the people who owned homes but he didn’t help the people who lived in apartments and were just as affected by the subprime issue. I won’t go there either. All the while I’m a single mom paying taxes, paying for others to have welfare when I needed that money, the government did nothing to collect child support for me, paying for Social Security that I might not even see one day, and not to mention that when tax season rolled around I made “too much” to qualify for earned income credit. I was $100 shy. Wow. And during those days there was no asking for “Go Fund Me” account. I spent a lot of time not feeding myself so I could feed my daughter.

When my career changed for the better, which is a story for another time, I was also at a point in my life where I had experienced what it was like to make friends at work and then realize I couldn’t trust them. I had a lot of bad experiences with co-workers turned best friends turn back stabbers and learned so early on that everyone is just always watching out for themselves. I was so honest and innocent and pure and that hasn’t changed about me. Because of that, because of who I am, I stopped trusting people and till this day I’m still very much guarded in that area. I show up to work, I smile, I treat people with respect, I do my job and I leave. That’s it. I don’t get personal, I don’t get close. And because I was a young mom, and a single one at that, I didn’t “fit in” with the moms of the daughters that were my daughters age. Those mother’s were at least 8-10 years older than I was. So there I was…in my upgraded apartment, on the first floor, with an attached garage (I felt I had made it) and I was lonely. I had no friends, I had no relationship. So I turned to crafting and found my best friend, my soul mate, and that…my friends…is how CheapCraftyGirl was born.