7 things that will help you keep your house clean in about an hour a day | simplykierste.com

7 things that will keep your house clean in about an hour a day!

Oh, how I love having a clean home.  But life is crazy busy, and there are always a million things to do all of the time, and it can be tricky to keep up on housework. Whether you work out of the home or in the home, to-do lists and responsibilities can be a mile long, and you might feel like you just don't have time to do what needs to be done.

Years ago, I developed a method that really worked for me, and I've been able to maintain it through six kids, working, staying home, and now working/blogging from home. I've found that I can just maintain a clean house, the daily chores just don't take as long, so I can fit a lot more in. There are seven things that I do on a daily basis, and those things can help you keep a clean house in just about an hour a day!

I don't always do everything in one straight hour--most of the time it's some in the morning and some in the evening--but the great thing about these things is that they can be done any time of the day or night, based on your personal circumstances.  Except making your bed...it really makes the most sense to do that in the morning. :)

Let me show you...

7 things that will help you keep your house clean in about an hour a day | simplykierste.com

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Easy Wood Christmas Sign | simplykierste.com

Easy wood Christmas sign

You might be surprised to hear this, but one of the hardest parts of being in this little apartment and not having any of our things is not the cramped quarters (which I've actually come to appreciate in many ways), but rather not being able to build and create and make stuff!!  With no tools here, and no home to decorate, my list is getting longer and longer by the day. It's what I love to do, so when I get any small opportunity to make something, no matter how simple, I'm a happy happy girl!

I decided I needed a little something to go above the chalkboard window in the family room to add a pop of color and a little bit of Christmas to the whole space, especially after my cute husband took on the big, bad, storage unit and tried to find our ornaments and decor, but couldn't.  I created a simple but adorable wood Christmas sign that's perfect above a doorway, window, or shelf, and I absolutely love it!

Easy Wood Christmas Sign | simplykierste.com

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4x4 Post Striped & Polka Dot Candlesticks | simplykierste.com

4×4 Post Striped & Polka Dot Candlesticks

You probably all know by now how much I love polka dots and stripes. I've used them in lots of my projects, with two of my favorites being Peppermint Striped Candlesticks and Striped & Polka Dot Pumpkins. I love them so much that I simply couldn't resist making a set in brown & white for Thanksgiving table centerpieces.  They're easy, adorable, and really inexpensive--three of my favorite things!

4x4 Post Striped & Polka Dot Candlesticks | simplykierste.com

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DIY Striped Mason Jar Soap Pump | simplykierste.com

Striped mason jar soap pump…perfect for Halloween!

Did you know there is a super easy way to make and adorable mason jar soap pump?  I've made them in the past using vintage jars and soap pumps cut from plastic soap dispensers, and I love them still, but this way is just SO easy.  You can use a plain jar, which is always a classic choice, but I thought a fun black & white striped version would be perfect for Halloween!

DIY Striped Mason Jar Soap Pump | simplykierste.com

I love love LOVE it!  Isn't it too adorable?  Stripes are another one of my obsessions, so it was an easy choice.  How cute would this be, sitting on your kitchen counter or next to your bathroom sink?  I know!

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Farmstyle Fall Wood Signs | simplykierste.com

Farmstyle wood fall signs + free Silhouette cut files

With all of our things still in storage, I really needed wanted to make a few fall decorations.  Okay, so I would have made them anyway. :) Anything pumpkins, apples, or fall calls my name, so I decided to start there, and made these adorable farmstyle wood fall signs using pieces of scrap wood. I absolutely love how they turned out, and best of all, they're super easy to make!

Farmstyle Fall Wood Signs | simplykierste.com

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School Lunch Station | Free Printables | simplykierste.com

Make packing lunches easier & faster with a school lunch station!

With my twin boys starting kindergarten this year (sniff, sniff), I will now have five kids to pack school lunch for.  All of a sudden this past week that seemed like... a lot.  We still have a couple of weeks until school starts, but I decided to get organized now!

I've always had some kind of lunch station, but the thought of 25 bags of chips, 25 fruit cups, 25 granola bars, 25 string cheese, and 25 go-gurt (plus sandwich stuff) per week really got me thinking about how I could create something to make the packing process a lot faster and easier. So...the official school lunch station has been created, including some super cute printables as the finishing touch. It's simple, but that's my favorite way to do things!

Make packing school lunches faster and easier with a lunch packing station! Free printable labels included! | simplykierste.com

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Farmhouse Picnic Table | simplykierste.com

Farmhouse style picnic table

The last picnic table we had cost $10.  We had just moved into our first house, and I was at the township office working in paperwork, when I saw a pile of picnic tables outside. They happened to be old tables from the parks in our township, and they were selling them cheap to make room for brand new tables.  I dug through the stack and chose the best of the bunch, and after refinishing it several times over the years, it lasted us until we made this last move.

I had plans to make another one this spring, and then my cute hubby surprised me by making one when I was out-of-town a couple months ago.   We've always use our picnic table a lot, and with the good weather finally making an appearance here in upstate NY, so I was very happy! I had to wait about 6 weeks for the pretreated lumber to finally dry out in order to finish it, but it's finally down, and I love it!

Farmhouse Picnic Table | simplykierste.com

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Backyard fun: Make your own DIY Tetherball set for half the cost! | simplykierste.com

Backyard fun: Make your own DIY tetherball set!

We are on a quest to add some really fun things to our backyard, and this DIY tetherball set was an easy weekend project that our whole family loves!  

Backyard fun:  Make your own DIY Tetherball set for half the cost! | simplykierste.com

After re-discovering tetherball at our friends' home several weeks ago, the kids begged us to get a tetherball set for them.  I checked them out on Amazon, and when I saw the price (around $100), I knew I could make one for less. I did!  I saved more than half by making our own, plus it's incredibly sturdy and durable.  We absolutely love it, and our family has already spent a lot of time outside enjoying it.

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favorite farmware and where to find it! | simplykierste.com

Favorite farmware…and where to find it!

I am in love with all things farmhouse, and I'm always on the lookout for decor that fits my farmhouse style.  I've come across some great sites through my searching, and discovered some of my favorite farmware that I want to share with you today...and also where to get them! What I love about just about every one of these items is that they can cross style genres--industrial, traditional, coastal--and can fit into so many different types of spaces. I absolutely love each of these!

favorite farmware | simplykierste.com

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Outdoor Nautical "Eat" Sign | simplykierste.com

Nautical outdoor “eat” sign

 Amanda, from The Tale of an Ugly House is here today, sharing this adorable outdoor "eat" sign!! 

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With summer finally here I've been looking for fun decor items to spruce up our backyard. We love to entertain and grill out. It's been really fun adding some nautical touches here and there to our outdoor space. I love how this sign turned out. We have it sitting on our grill prep/ buffet table. It's super easy to make and very inexpensive! Here's what you need to make your own rope sign-

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Vintage lemonade stand with reversible chalkboard sign | simplykierste.com

Vintage lemonade stand with reversible chalkboard sign

Making a lemonade stand has been on my list...pretty much forever.  The last few years we've been so transient that it wasn't really an option--with no where to store it and moves coming up.  Even though all of our things are in storage right now, we did keep out the chop saw so that we would be able to build things for our new house.  With summer parties and entertaining on the horizon, I decided it was time for a lemonade stand.  I'm calling it a lemonade stand just because I'm not sure what else to call it, and also because it makes it sound cuter, but it will mostly be used as a outside serving station. I added a few features, including a reversible chalkboard sign, and decided on a color that will make it perfect for all of my outdoor entertaining!!

Vintage lemonade stand with reversible chalkboard sign | simplykierste.com

Vintage lemonade stand with reversible chalkboard sign | simplykierste.com

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"Before you can play" summer chore chart | simplykierste.com

Save your sanity with a “before you can play” chore list!

Every summer morning I hear the words "can I play?", in one form or another.  They might be referring to going outside to play, having friends over, wanting me to take them somewhere, requesting screen time, or  any number of things that's on their agenda that day.  I got really tired of listing the things off that they needed to do before they could play (even though they already knew), that I decided to make things easier for not only myself, but for the kids too, by making a summer "before you can play" chore list.  I hung it on the fridge, and when they want to know if they can play, I just ask if they have everything done on the list! Love!

"Before you can play" summer chore chart | simplykierste.com

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5 tips for painting & decorating unfinished frames | simplykierste.com

5 tips for painting & decorating unfinished frames

full of cute printables inside cute frames. I love using these MDF frames with fancy edges because they are customizable and it's easy to change out the picture. I love decorating with pictures of my family and since we have young kids I am constantly putting new pictures in.

5 Tips for Painting and Decorating unfinished frames.  Tips for styling your favorite DIY frames.

First of all you can get these unfinished frames at most craft stores. I ordered a bunch from Cut it Out Frames and then let them sit in a drawer for almost a year! There's no need to be afraid to paint these frames. It's so easy!

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