Category: Home

My Kindle eReader Has Changed My Reading Life

My Kindle eReader and I have become inseparable over the last couple of years.  Besties.  We go everywhere together.  I was using my Kindle before then, and used a Nook eReader before that, but somehow in the last couple of years I’ve incorporated my Kindle into my life completely, and now I just can’t live without it.  It goes with me everywhere, all day long, and because I’m listening to audio books instead of taking time to sit down to read on the couch, I read non-stop.

I take my Kindle on my daily walks, carpool drop off and pick up, while I fold laundry and when I edit photos, while I cook dinner and do dishes, and while I fall asleep at night.  Seriously, the case on my Kindle is starting to look like a beloved paperback, all dinged on the cover and shredded at the edges.

amazon kindle

If you’re a book lover and don’t currently have an e-reader, get on that business ASAP.  Put it on your wish list for whatever: birthday, anniversary, work-iversary, or your I-made-it-to-the-end-of-the-week celebration.

Because of my Kindle, I’m reading 2-3 books a week as opposed to maybe 2-3 in a … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

How We Decorated Our Study In Mid-Century Modern

Mid-century modern is my new favorite everything.  Period.  I had no idea I had such a thing for 1950’s and 1960’s style until we started renovating my house one room at a time, and over and over again mid-century modern pieces kept popping up on my inspiration boards.  Our family room remodel ended up having bits and pieces of mid-century modern throughout, and as we’ve decorated the rest of the house it has become obvious I have a major thing for the style of that (wicked stylish) time period.

study re-decorate

Speaking of mid-century modern, our study redesign is finally finished, and I can’t wait to show you. But first I want to share the pieces we used to put it together.  The whole idea for this room was to swap it out from brown-on-brown-on-brown, on-boring to bright and gorgeous and modern.

It was really important to us to keep the function of the room, which is a major hangout for the kids to work on homework at the computer or to play Legos, or lounge on the sofa.  So when I picked out all the furniture for the room I thought function first, then form, but I managed to keep … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

My Easy Tips For Putting Together My Weekly Menu

A weekly menu is the best thing since sliced bread.  Or cream puffs.  Actually, a weekly menu is the best thing since chocolate.  Well, maybe not chocolate, that’s crazy talk, but let me put it this way: my weekly menu saves my life.

cookbooks

I’ve done every kind of meal planning there is: flying-by-the-seat-of-my-pants planning, organized-but-not-written-down planning, no-planning-of-any-kind, eating-out-instead-of-planning, and most recently, writing-it-all-down-and-being-extra-organized.

The best out of all the meal planning options?  Writing it all down and being extra organized.

how to put together a weekly menu

For about the last year and a half I’ve been vigilant about putting together meal plans and grocery lists every week, and it has saved my bacon.  (see what I did there?)  Even if we end up being in a hurry and eating out here and there, having it all organized ahead of time means even with the occasional treat out, most weeks we sit down at least 5 nights for a legit family meal.

I love it.

grocery list

Since I’ve figured out my system, my life feels so much less stressed.  I know what we’re eating for dinner by 7:30 AM every day, which means if something needs to go in the crock pot  all day, … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Love And Friendship Movie + A Giveaway

It’s giveaway time! Get excited because not only is there a Jane Austen book + bookmark involved (hooray!), there’s also a $100 Amazon gift card and movie t-shirt up for grabs.

Let’s talk about the new movie and what this means for you.

// This post is in partnership with Roadside Attractions.  Thank you for always being so gracious to Petit Elefant sponsors. // 

love & friendship movie

The new movie, Love & Friendship (in theaters now) is based on the unfinished Jane Austen novella, Love & Friendship: In Which Jane Austen’s Lady Susan Vernon Is Entirely Vindicated by Whit Stillman. Have you ever heard of it or read it?  I didn’t even know it existed which means I’m about to head own a Jane Austen rabbit hole of reading, which, let’s be honest, is the very best kind.  Especially because this book is apparently right up there with the rest of Jane Austen’s hilariously witty body of work.  I’m kind of dying I didn’t know this existed and am now extra excited to see the movie (with Kate Beckinsale and Chloe Sevigny) which is all about a foxy young widow (Kate Beckinsale) who has come to Churchill to live with her in-laws, … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

My Favorite Trick For Hanging Pictures On Your Walls

Hanging pictures can be so intimidating, especially when you’re staring at a fresh new wall and don’t know where to start.  Or, when you’re like me and have too many pictures and artwork and you want to hang them all.  So, where does one start when a room is ready to hang pictures?

Let me share my favorite trick for hanging a lot of pictures at the same time, so they all have a cohesive feel to really pull the whole room together with a gorgeous gallery wall.

favorite trick for hanging pictures

When we started redecorating our study a few months ago, I gathered all the art and photos I’ve collected over the last several years and put them on my kitchen table to evaluate.  I have a habit of buying prints and artwork on the spot when I love something too much to leave it behind, or it’s on super sale (like the painting above, left, by my friend, artist Erin Cooper), even if I’m not sure where I’ll put it in my house.

Most of what I buy has a similar feel, but after I had everything framed for this project and got it back to the study, I realized I … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

10 Popcorn Summer Movies To Watch On Netflix

10 popcorn summer movies to watch on Netflix this summer!

10 Popcorn Summer Movies To Watch On NetflixEvery year when I was a kid, a small movie theater in my town did a series of kids summer movies for the masses of wiggly children home for the summer.  For a really nominal price, something like $1/movie and $1.50 for a movie AND treats, bored kids swarmed the theater all summer long.  The theater sold packages to elementary schools, and on every Tuesday and Wednesday there were two matinee showings a day of 2nd run family movies.  All my friends from elementary school would get together and choose a day and time to buy movie tickets, and then we all went home and told our moms we HAD to have tickets for Tuesdays at 12:30 p.m. or else! and to keep everyone happy and out of their hair, all the moms agreed and promptly set up movie carpools. Then all summer long my gang of buddies and I would gather in the sticky-floored movie theater every week to giggle our way through Short Circuit, and The Whiz, Back to the Future, and the rest of the age-appropriate summer movies from the year before.

It was amazing.… >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

E-Bikes Are The Glorious Future Of Transportation

Transportation by electric bikes is the way of the future!  I’m serious, so let’s talk about why.

// Thank you for your support of Petit Elefant sponsors!  This post is brought to you in partnership with eSpokes Electric Bikes, the largest electric bike retailer in Utah. As always, all opinions are my own. //

Last month I shared with you how in love I am with my electric bike as a new mode of transportation around my city and why.  This month I’m here to show you the bike in action (me! on an e-bike! in my favorite places around town!) and to talk more about the benefits of riding an e-bike.

I’ve already covered what an electric-bike is doing for me in my daily life, but here’s a recap: I’m getting out more, period.  I’m taking time in my day to spend at least 20-30 minutes on a bike ride, which I just wasn’t doing before, and I love it.  I’m obsessed.  An e-bike makes bike riding more fun! And exciting! And I look forward to it in a way I didn’t look forward to pedaling around before.  So there’s that, too.

But what I didn’t … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

How to Lay Out A Room Design On Paper

We’re doing a completely new room design right now in our home study, and I’m having so much fun, I have to share.  You can follow the behind-the-scenes here on Petit Elefant’s Instagram, but here’s the real skivvy on the new design.

study sketches

The study is the first room you see when you come in our front door, and so far it’s been a bit of a hodgepodge of furniture and random design.  You know how that happens sometimes?  A room just sort of gathers cast off furniture and picture frames as they come to you?  Maybe this doesn’t happen at your house, but it does at mine.

We’ve done a lot of redecorating and remodeling in the 12+ years we’ve lived in our house, including our huge master bathroom remodel and redesign, an overhaul of our laundry room, an office remodel, a new room design for our family room, a kitchen remodel, and a kids bathroom remodel.  And we’re just getting started.  Haaaaa, haaa.  Oh, now I want to cry just thinking about it, it’s been so much work.

study design layout

Anyhow, we’re finally getting to a new room design for the study and we’re having … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

5 Netflix Shows You Should Be Binge-Watching ASAP

Netflix shows are where it’s aaaaaaaaaaaaat.  Actually, I hate ending sentences in a preposition so let’s restate that:  you need Netflix in your life, and I have 5 binge-worthy TV shows I recommend you binge-watch immediately.

Netflix

If you’re just getting started with my favorite Netflix shows / recommendations, you can start here:

 

Let’s get onto more of the good stuff now.

House of Cards

If you haven’t seen House of Cards by now, it’s time to get started.  Fasten your seat-belt and prep your living room for the apocalypse because you won’t be going anywhere for awhile.  It’s a show about American politics and the minutia of the daily life of a senator climbing to the top of the political game one person at a time. The writing is SO good you can’t believe it.  It’s such an enormous leap up from your standard TV fare, never-mind the terrific acting and twist and turn plot, it’s no wonder people crashed the Netflix server when season 3 … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!