Repurpose & Reuse

If you know me well, you know I love a good bargain! Marshall’s is my jam, and so is the Dollar Stop at Target. I also love “redecorating” my house by taking all my knick knacks and decor off the shelves in my house, bringing them to a central location and then redistributing everything among the house to make it feel like I purchased new decorations.

So, it should come at no surprise that I love dual purposing party decor. Everyone always complains that parties become so expensive. Instead of purchasing disposable decor or things you will never again use, why not purchase things you can reuse not just at future parties but in your everyday.

My first example has to be one of my favorites (maybe because it is yet again baby related and I am in total baby mode), but it came from a shower I attended for my friend Mariette. The hostesses created a clothesline of onesies that adorably matched the shower’s color scheme, but they also were coordinated and numbered up to 12. The mama-to-be could use them in her baby’s month photos. Instead of the generic stickers, she is now equipped with 12 onesies to dress Conrad in (happy one month, little man)!

Eclectic dishware has been a trend at weddings and parties that have a romantic, antique feel. And styling a table full of mismatched dishes is not only easy to do, but it requires very little purchasing. If this is the vibe you’re going for, raid the cabinets of your mom, grandma and even an antique shop or two, and you can collect all sorts of ornate China, colorful glassware and pieces with character for a very small price.

Photo courtesy of Codi Shandel Photography.

And when you do have to purchase party-specific items, try and purchase things that can be reused from celebration to celebration. I am someone who LOVES color, but most of my serving dishes are plain white with maybe a small monochromatic detail. This way, you can work them into any color scheme or decor theme. Below are a few links to items that I find myself consistently using every time I host friends and family:

Bash Beverage Tub from Crate & Barrel ($89.95)
I have this one, which is the larger version and works well if you host a lot of parties or bigger gatherings. If you tend to have more intimate events, they also have a small version  ($69.95). I chose the silver one, but now that I have collected more servingware, I almost wish I would have purchased the gold one. There’s lots of fun, neutral colors available, including graphite, silver, gold and copper.

Place Card Holder Set from Pier 1 ($28.95)

Technically, these are called place cards, but I prefer to use them as buffet labels. They’re dry erase, which makes them easy to reuse and a nice, neutral color to match my servingware.

Double Sided Chalkboard from Target ($59.99)
The one I own is actually from Hobby Lobby, but here’s another great option from Target. These work great for welcome signs on your front porch, menu boards, photo opps, etc.

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Surprising New Mama Products

Alright, alright. I know my world is revolving around babies lately, but since I have this platform and have been trying out tons of new products, why not share right? I hope all my soon-to-be mamas out there appreciate this.

I have compiled a list of products and supplies that I wouldn’t have thought of right away or even knew existed that have been integral in the first few weeks of motherhood:

1. Kimono Onesies
I did have to laugh when I figured out what the name of these onesies were, but these have been a lifesaver when dressing our little one these first few weeks. First of all, it makes it super easy to check on the umbilicle cord stump (sorry, there’s really not a better word than that to describe that…) before it has fallen off. Plus, having a newborn in November in Missouri has been a bit crazy because the weather changes from 60 degrees down to 30 degrees overnight or throughout the course of the day. These onesies are super easy for layering and plus, they have the mittens for those crazy sharp newborn nails.

2. “Mayo Clinic Guide to Your Baby’s First Year”
I had a baby shower that requested all guests bring a book instead of a card and, of course, my dermatologist friend gifted a medical book. At first, I found it fitting that she brought it, but I’ve also discovered it was one of my favorites I received. As much as I appreciated “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom” and “Goodnight Moon,” I have almost read this guide from cover to cover. I would actually recommend reading the majority of the book prior to your baby’s arrival, but there’s also a great month-by-month section that reviews changes in your little one each month. I’ve soaked up an abundance of knowledge from it as well as learned a few things I was doing incorrectly as a new mama. Thanks for the advice, Emily!

3.  Booby Boons Lactation Cookies
Not going to lie, but I would never have eaten a lactation cookie had they not arrived on my doorstep in my bump box. I thought I would give them a whirl. First of all, they are the perfect sweet treat when you’re trying to slim down. The serving size is three cookies, and they’re only 170 calories. They are made with no artificial preservatives or flavors and use yeast, oats and flax. The flavor I tried was cocoa quinoa, and I would highly recommend it! As far as enhancing milk production, I can’t confirm or deny if they’ve actually helped, but this mama’s milk is flowing, so there’s a possibility they might have!

4. The Touch Lamp
This one I actually purchased on accident…well, kind of. I purchased it because we needed a lamp for the nursery. The overhead light on the fan was too bright for middle of the night feedings. So, I went to Target in search of a cute and inexpensive lamp option. I chose this one because it was simple and matched the nursery decor. I brought it home, plugged it in and realized it was a touch lamp meaning you could touch the lamp anywhere on the base, and it would turn on. Before baby, I thought it was a nice feature. Now, I’m in love with it. If your hands are full with the little one, a pacifier, a burp cloth, etc., it makes turning on the light super convenient, especially because our light switch doesn’t connect to the outlet that we plugged it into. It was a surprisingly awesome product!