Saturday, January 21, 2012

Happy Chinese New Year!

2012 ~ Year of the Dragon

Get ready to celebrate the Chinese New Year 
this upcoming Monday, January 23rd.
Unlike some traditional holidays celebrated in the U.S., 
the Chinese New Year can begin anytime between the end 
of January and throughout the middle of February. 
This is because the new moon changes from year to year.

Wish someone Happy New Year, in Chinese of course!

(Cantonese) "Gung Hay Fat Choy!" - May prosperity be with you.

(Mandarin)  "Xin Nian Kuai Le!" - Happy New Year

Monday, January 9, 2012

Moving Tips

I know, I know.  I'm a horrible blogger.  If you're wondering, "Oh, where did Nay go?", I'm still here.  To be exact here is NJ.  Within a week I'll be in Ohio though.  And we all know how much fun it is to move, right?!  Right?.... Siiighhh. 

Here's my game plan for making Moving Day easier, or so I hope. I figured going by a checklist would help keep me sane. 

Packing supplies.  
Before you buy boxes, tape, and packing material, estimate how many boxes you need on a room by room basis. Also, take a visual inventory of the actual size of the items you'll be packing. Don't forget not to procrastinate!  The earlier you start packing, the saner you will be. 

~ Tip: Small boxes for heavy items. Large boxes for lighter items. 

Who wants to lug around things to their new place that they haven't used and will probably just end up sticking in the basement or hallway closet?  As tedious as decluttering may be, what more perfect time than when packing to move?!  Donate items that haven't been used in months (ok, come on, you know it's actually been nearly a year or more) to your local charity or fund your moving expenses by selling it on eBay or craigslist.

Moving help.  
It's always helpful having help when you move.  Whether you round up your friends to help pack or load, or if it's just to help babysit your kiddies to get more accomplished.  No friends available?  You can always hire help. Self-service moves are where you pack your belongings, load them into a secure container and the moving service transports your container to your new address. Full-service moves are where the moving company loads the moving truck, drives your belongings to your new address, and unloads the truck. Some companies will also pack your belongings but I prefer to know where everything is.  Kind of creepy too if you ask me, having strangers pack your personal items.  I'm opting for the least expensive route though - packing myself, loading myself, and renting a moving truck. 

Mail (Snail Mail)   
Did you know you can pick the exact day you want to have USPS start forwarding your mail? Pick the exact day you want your mail to be delivered to your new home, and of course you can do this all online. However, keep in mind that  certain mail doesn't get forwarded, so banks, credit card companies and membership clubs should be notified in advance. 

Utility Providers.  
Schedule your current utility providers for disconnection AND search for the best deals for your new home. 
~ Tip: Service providers usually, if not always, have 
     special offers for new customers, especially online.  

Transfer your checking account to your new city. 
This might be a good time to evaluate what service you use. Many banks offer free checking and can be set up easily online.

Important Stuff
As much as you may try to avoid it, forgetting where you packed something away is common.  Items such as medications, legal documents, insurance policies, car titles and the moving services contract should be kept with you during the move.  Alternatively you can ship them ahead of time with a service that requires a delivery signature.

Pack your comfort items last. 
Holding off on packing your favorite coffee mug or pillow can help relieve stress.  Make sure you have your kiddies favorite comfort items too! 

When you feel the overwhelming stress of moving come over you, envision yourself settled in your new home.  The stress is all worth it. 

Monday, January 2, 2012

{Store Strolls} Hobby Lobby

Back in Jersey I never set foot into a Hobby Lobby.  As of now, there aren't any in NJ!  We (Jerseyians) have Michael's, AC Moore and Jo-Ann Fabrics as craft stores. 

Here's some of the lovely finds that caught my eye during my first ever visit!

Picture Frame: 'Born to Wear Diamonds'

Free Standing Decor: Paris

Framed Art: Ballerina's Tutu

Framed Art: 'Tiny Cakes Big Smiles',  $39.99

Framed Art: 'Sprinkle Some Happiness',  $39.99

Chest of Book Drawers!
 Matted Unframed Art: Couture