Retirement Tracker

Best_Budgeting_Advice_Millennials

Yes, I’m 30. Yes, I’m talking about retirement. Call me crazy, but this girl just can’t help that I like to plan! πŸ˜‰ I went into our frugal philosophies and goals before, but since it’s officially been 1-year since we became retirement saving ninjas – I wanted to give everyone an update on our progress. Our goal has always been to live a simple, meaningful life. Especially now that we have this kiddo (soon kiddos) romping around, I’ve found a stronger and stronger desire to work toward a goal of financial independence. I know for us that will never mean not working cause this girl has got to keep busy (and frankly I LOVE my job!), it will just mean the flexibility to choose the life paths that present themselves to us, vs. feeling locked chain and anchor to the 9-5. Because let’s face it, feeling forced into anything is just not a recipe for a happy life, and yolo y’all!

I’ve referenced Mr. Money Mustache before, who’s principles have always been a guiding beacon for us. One of his big tenants is the 4% rule – essentially, in order to retire off your nest egg, you need a sum that allows you to meet your living expenses by drawing down 4% at a time. He actually breaks it down here into the multiplier you need for that which is Monthly Living Expenses x 12 x 25. So the multiplier here is 25 times your annual living expenses (for others that may be interested in following a similar formula). We will personally aim for a number slightly higher than this, but it’s a good baseline to reference for starting.

Our general game plan for retirement savings and income stability has been two fold. Although we’re trying our best to invest heavily in conventional retirement accounts in this season of life, we’re also super focused on paying off our home and our condo. I personally feel tied to both of us working full-time until our mortgage is paid off in full. Many frugal living advocates advise holding on to your mortgage (you keep tax deductions, many loans these days are low interest) but again, I guess it’s the risk adversity in me that really doesn’t like the idea of having TWO mortgages hanging over our head – it’s just a lot of capital that is no longer needed – not to mention, once paid off, the condo we own becomes part of our income generation as well (since our monthly living costs are so low, this income stream (albeit nominal) will help get us much of the way toward monthly expenditures.

To date, we’re 37% paid off on our mortgages (so 63% more to go until we hit financial independence here). If we continue to have similar income streams over the next few years we’re between 6-7 years from having these paid off. So still a while, but certainly shorter than a conventional 30 year loan. To pay these off as quickly as possible, we’ve increased the principle dollar amount by supplementing it with any rental income we have coming in. When H starts K in 2-years, we will also funnel his monthly daycare payment into this pot, and we will do the same with our daughter when she starts up at elementary.

For our retirement assets, we’re about 14% of the way toward this goal. I stated initially that we’d like to be financially independent within 10 years (so 9 years, now).Β The market is also bound to fluctuate – a lot – which is not something I stress too much about y’all. We don’t change our investment strategy during ups and downs in the market, we just keep plugging at the max contribution rate we can afford. Much of our retirement income will not be available to us without a penalty before we’re old geezers so if we get to our goal retirement amount by 40, for instance, and then let it sit for 25 more years, even assuming 5% growth (which is my conservative figure year over year), that’s actually much more than we’ll ever need. Because we’re limited in what assets we can pull down from when we’re younger (40-60ish) we’re focused on paying off our house, etc, so that we can have very minimal monthly expenditures sans mortgage and can use our rental income for our monthly needs like groceries, etc.

Y’all – my one word of encouragement on this would be to just *start* saving. Like $5 a week start saving. If you have an employer contribution, max it out guys! That’s wasted $ on the table! And if you think that there is no money to save, I’d *really* encourage you to look at your spending and see where you can eliminate something that you’ve come to take for granted. For me – y’all – it was Target runs. Cliche, I know. But cutting this down and just asking myself – do I need this (?) has been a critical (small) way I can move toward better spending habits. And don’t get be wrong, I still lurve me some target, but I’ve found it’s much more fulfilling to buy our clothing, etc second hand much cheaper, and I don’t have the guilt or the burden of the excess spending.

One more life hack – I swear y’all – one of the biggest drains I think on families nationally is our expectation of owning new (and excessive amounts of) cars. When Jay and I got married we sold both our crappola cars and bought a 2007 Toyota Prius, which we drive sparingly. Not having a monthly car payment, or an expectation of a fancy/new car, has been critical for us. Cars are the biggest depreciating asset around, they’re nice to have from a utility standpoint but unless I’m feeling like Tevye after he hit it big and became a rich man, don’t expect me to be driving around in no Lexus πŸ˜‰ (BTW – all time fav dance move is the rich man shoulder shake – go watch Fiddler on the Roof if you don’t know what I’m talking about – it’s a hit at parties)

Ultimately – $$$ is all about finding what works for you and your family. If you like eating out every week – go for it! If you prefer a new dolce purse, that’s awesome. But if you find that you regret some of those expenditures at the end of the month, I’d encourage you to take a hard look at your monthly bills and see if there are ways you can funnel funds toward more productive long term goals. For us, we’ve found the equation to happiness is simplicity – and ultimately – what makes both Jay and I happiest these days is spending time with our little humans, so the sooner we can optimize that, the better!

Psst – I also loved this very simple, straight forward analysis by MMM shows how (2) teachers can reach financial independence in 10 years or less. πŸ™‚ Hint, I make about as much as a High School teacher (aka NOT a lot) – so early retirement is definitely something that’s attainable for many!

ThredUP(grade)

Ok, you guys, I’m getting down right squirrely over here. So ya know how second kids are supposed to come earlier than the first one – is that I thing – I convinced myself that was a thing. And I started buying myself a whole new post pregnancy wardrobe *in December* because I was convinced that after the man with the bag came by that my kid would be out of my uterus. But she’s not y’all – she. is. not. I’m not a patient person, and my patience wans even quicker when I’m 8+ months preg. Funny how that works. Also my child is breech, so my feelings about this pregnancy to date are sorta – can we get this over with already. I swear.

I did though, want to share my shopping induced distraction from my current state of doom with you guys. Y’all know I’m always looking for a thrifty deal, and I think I’ve permanently found my new fix for clothes shopping – ThredUP. Have y’all heard of this site? If not, it’s going to knock y’all over because they have the best deals on really nice clothing – that’s second hand. To me, that makes it even more of a win because for this price point I’d basically be buying stuff made straight from a sweat shop and that’s just not good for anyone.

My first favorite thing about ThredUP is that they package everything to make you feel like you went out shopping at the boutique. They even put gift tags on stuff so you could purchase thrifted items to gift. I feel like we have a stigma in this country that everything gifted should be new, and really that’s so silly.Β For clothing something that’s thrifted might be tricky (unless you know someones size) but they also have a ton of really gorgeous jewelry that I was able to get for under $10 per piece (closer to $5 for necklaces/earrings I got!)

I’ve actually been crushing on this jcrew t-shirt for a while with the stripes for a while, and was able to get it for $6. Super cute layering top for spring.

Isn’t this necklace / sweater combo beautiful? I can’t wait to not be pregnant so I can wear it!! πŸ˜‰

The quality on this stuff is incredibly high, and I did a quick search on this sweater – which retails for nearly $80 and is American Made, I got it for $8 and I’m totally smitten with it.

I also picked up this Ann Taylor cardigan for $8 (and another necklace) and I love how they pair together. Plus cardigans are extra nice since I can wear them now and don’t have to wait til I’m sans baby to look stylish (I never ultra committed to high fashion maternity wear since it’s so fleeting you wear it and didn’t want to spend the dough to look super cute but if you’re more fashion forward than me, ThredUP does maternity duds too). Plus there are frigid temperatures in NC this past week (like 30 – which for us might as well be the arctic tundra) so I’ve been getting lots of use out of extra layers.

And to appease my pregnancy induced self, I also picked up a few earrings to wear and enjoy right now.

One of my favorite things about living in NC is that it’s tank top and jeans weather by March on a good day and I’m super pumped about wearing some of these once I can fit into my pre-pregnancy pants again πŸ˜€ For reference, the forever 21 lace tank was just over $3 and the blouse was $6!

The detail on this j crew blouse, y’all. Come. On! $5 – I paid FIVE DOLLARS FOR IT.

So the sweetest part of this whole shabang is that ThredUP is hooking all of y’all up with 50% off your first order by using the code LEMONGROVE.Β Use this link to get shopping you guys! A new wardrobe awaits.

 

 

Bath Business

So I’m not sure what it *is* about me, but whenever the time for baby is nigh, I’m all – let’s gut a room, Jay! πŸ˜€ Scrubbing floors for nesting, not around here! πŸ˜‰

We wanted to update a bathroom that we use for guests in our casa and renovate it a bit so that it’s more comfortable for them up there in our bonus room. I’ve started an inspiration board, below, to give you an idea of how I’m hoping to configure the space.

While we’re at it (and the room is gutted) I also wanted to update our kitchenette in this room to give it a similar farmhouse / industrial style to what we’ll be doing in the bathroom. Here are some of the initial ideas I had for the space, for reference. To save a ton of dough in the short run, I think we will re-use some damaged cabinets (they had a paint defect) by repainting them, and DIY a counter top. It’s just a guest space, so as long as the install options are durable (and cute!) I’ll be happy with them until we feel like spending more dolla billz down the road. πŸ™‚

Here are some of my favorites – we’ll be doing a shiplap backsplash because I’m all about inexpensive, chic finishes! πŸ™‚

Shiplap-backsplash-kitchen

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I’ll keep you updated – we start gutting the room this Thursday and I’m hoping to have a good head start on it before the babe gets here. She’s currently breech at 35 + weeks so I might have a bit more time to bake her w/ a c-section getting scheduled for week 39. In the mean time, if you need me, I’ll be walking my tail off and laying on ironing boards trying to get this kid to turn πŸ˜‰

 

Nursery Artwork

You guys – it’s the final countdown now until we’re a family of 4. I’m right at 35 weeks now and I had H at 37 weeks, so I’m hoping this little lady follows suit and we get to meet her in the next few weeks. But alas, these matters are not up to me and so we wait. πŸ™‚

This pregnancy is really a bit hard to capture for me, but undoubtedly, it’s been atypical and full of more uncertainty than this type-a, planner personality is really all that comfortable with. I know no matter what that everything will always be fine because above all else our family has each other, so even if this sweet girl is born with health impacts, we will deal with it with open hearts and open minds and do our best, and really as parents, that’s all we ever can do. If you all don’t mind taking one second to send good vibes out into the universe though, we always appreciate another soul out there rooting for our girl to have a CMV free diagnosis at birth.

Our daughter’s name is Emerson Jeanne, Emerson because we just liked it and Jeanne, because my Aunt Jeanne is arguably one of the most righteous babes to walk this earth. She is smart and witty and kind and giving and just symbolizes the best of humanity to me and I hope more than anything that my Emerson grows up in her image. I’ve found as I’ve been designing Emerson’s room that I actually dig Ralph Waldo Emerson a bit more than I knew, so the first thing you see when you walk into her space is a quote by the wise sage. It reads: “Be Silly, Be Honest, Be Kind”.

I love how the trim Jay added to the space frames out this art perfectly in the room!

Working off the understated floral / botanical theme in her nursery, I also purchased this cute crib sheet. At $26 it was one of the “splurges” for our space, as everything else was reused from Henry’s room or bought off craigslist for the most part.

Here is another vantage of it – I really love this crib sheet and I’m glad I gave myself permission to get this extravagant purchase πŸ˜€ I was going to go for another floral one I found that was $12, which seemed more palatable, but y’all yolo.

In this photo you can also see the artwork we purchase for the room off etsy, and then printed for ONE DOLLAR at staples. A dollar, you guys.

I love how it looks in the natural wood frame and have the other matching art from the set flanking the left side of our windows, up above the glider.

We also added in some linen window shades that are room darkening from JCP (where I tend to get all my window treatments because they’re reasonably chic and super cheap).

These ones are not cordless which is a bit of a pain, but they were the linen fabric I wanted so I decided to just suck it up. Once she’s born and sleeping in this room on the daily, they’ll most likely remain shut to create as dark and womb-like a space possible any way πŸ˜‰

Here is another shot with my all time favorite light hack sneaking in for another feature. πŸ˜€

So that’s a wrap guys! Now just waiting on our little girl to fill the space. I hope to have a closet update for you all down the road because I *really* want to put wallpaper in that joint to pretty it up. The perfect backdrop for all her cute dresses! πŸ˜€

Little Big Boy

There really is nothing more life altering than popping out a child you guys. Just how much they completely redefine the things you care about (and worry about) and take up 110% of your heart. I’m in awe of our little man and I’m so excited to see how he’s going to navigate being a big brother – my theory is he will view the baby as an enhanced version of his kitty – who he loves to snuggle with, and play with and take care of, and yell at. It will be so fun to see him interact with her – I’m sure they’ll be plenty of inner struggle with the kid getting de-throned and all, but hey, life goes on πŸ˜‰

So as we’ve been gearing up to provide a new space for our new baby, I got to thinking more and more about how I wanted to make an equally nice space for H. Notably, we had to transition him from his crib to a big boy bed, since his sister would get that resting locale once she’s out of the uterus.

Dark Blue Baby Room

Here is a photo above of how Henry’s nursery looked, with the crib and glider tucked into each corner.

And here is a similar angle with his new twin bed, along with his tepee (which he refers to as his “house”)

So one thing I LOVE about his new room is this super cute and super functional sideboard I got on craigslist. It provides ample storage in the room and gives us plenty of locations to store his toys while leaving them easily accessible for Henry to grab himself.

I’m trying to decide what to do with those little cubbys, up above the baskets, for now they’ll just stay empty.


I also got this bed on craigslist and it’s perfectly worn in and really just gorgeous.

One thing I *don’t* love about toddler rooms is that the bed is like nearly impossible to make nicely w/ no wrinkles and that drives me a bit bonkers lol. Between the guard rail for sleeping and the fact that the bed is tight up against the wall to prevent him from slipping into the crack on the side of the bed, the comforter never is smooth and always has so inconsistency to it. Which frankly is a pretty good analogy for life with a toddler πŸ˜‰

On the other side of his room is his closet and another bookcase, where we store all the night time reading selections πŸ™‚

I’d love this room to be wood (keep telling the hubby I want to replace the carpet w/ wood and he sorta laughs at me each time – which I’m interpreting as him being so full of joy about this prospect that it just make him laugh but this may be misguided) πŸ˜‰


Baby Girl Nursery Reveal

I got lots of questions from y’all on the specifics of the wainscoting treatment in our little one’s room, so I wanted to follow up today with some “after” shots of the space, along with a cost breakdown of everything to date. Note, I still need to buy bedding for the crib (we will reuse Henry’s crib in her room), and a touch of artwork, but other than that, y’all we are d-o-n-e (with 9-ish weeks to go!)

So I eluded to it last week, but we decided to go dark in the nursery! We actually painted it the same color as the base on our desk (Ashwood Moss), so that saved us some $$ since we were able to use the same $30 gallon of color matched paint.

Once painted, the wainscoting went from this:

#InteriorDesign #DIY

To this! So classy and I seriously feel like this room is a library y’all.


The trim we purchased was outdoor, plastic stuff (we couldn’t find anything in wood with the dimensions/look we wanted) so it took a few coats of paint lightly applied to the trim to get everything the way it needed to look. It was tedious, but all in all, in a weekend between husband and myself, we had the room done.

The trim we got was closest to this one that I found online, although this is wood grain. Your total cost will depend on how much square footage you need to cover, and how many boxes you want to make, but our total out of pocket cost was just under $200 for this space, and we used about 200 linear feet for ours (which is a 10×11 room).

I decided to go with light wood accents in this space, to go with the botanical theme I have for the room and it looks finnnee next to those dark walls y’all. Here is a shot of the dresser I got on craigslist and a mirror we re-purposed from inside the house. We’ve had it forever, but I think I got it at Homegoods originally.

Here is another angle, of the corner with our glider. Also repurposed from Henry’s room, and the frames have been up since we moved in. They were $12.99 each at Homegoods though! (I have one flanking either side of the window)

And another image of the glider nook, with different lighting. It really does read differently depending on the angle, but I’d say that it’s a charcoal with some greenish tints to it. That lamp base was a $4.99 thrift store find, and it has a target lampshade on it. Craigslist side table. πŸ™‚

Charcoal Nursery

If I have my way and see some beauties pop up on craigslist, etc, I’d also *love* to add pinch pleat drapes to this room down the line, but absolutely refuse to spend hundreds of dollars on it, ya know? If I get ambitious before baby girl comes (or maybe after?) I also plan on wallpapering the closet! I mean, who doesn’t want a sweet looking wallpapered closet? I think it would be the perfect backdrop for a little lady and all their pretty clothes!

That light though y’all – it’s my fav πŸ˜€

DIY Light Fixture

So price breakdown so far:

  • $30 in paint (shared w/ desk project)
  • $197 in trim (splurge!)
  • $92 on light fixture (for the jute ball and the DIY light kit – hoping to sell extra spheres to bring this down)
  • $4.99 lamp base
  • $10 lamp shade
  • $125 antique dresser
  • Glider reused from Henry’s room
  • Crib reused from Henry’s room

Lighting the Way

I feel like light fixtures, especially in the bedrooms in the houses we’ve lived in, have always been aspirational check boxes, vs. anything I actually ever get around to. It’s just one of those things that is a bit more out of sight, out of mind, which is a shame because they really can up the anty on a room and make it looks a lot more pulled together (like this guest room back in MI).

Case and point, the light we had in our nursery. lolz.

#DIY

I mean, it just doesn’t reach out and grab you, ya know? πŸ˜€ You can see on my mood board, that I had an organic/textury light picked out and I did a bit of a whomp whomp in my heads when I saw on Shades of Light that this bad boy was over $200. Which just felt like a lot, for a dangling basket, more or less.

You guys – sometimes the internet just really comes through for you. This time, it was amazon where I was able to find the *exact* same jute globe, for $80, but instead of 1 globe, I got THREE globes.

#DIY #DIYlightpendant

Now I have no idea how it happened, since these jute balls are now $160 for the set of (3), but I seriously got all (3) for $80! I purchased a DIY kit off amazon as well, and from there, we were ready to hang this light up!

Once they arrived, we decided to use the middle size pendant light for her room, which you can see below before it was up.

#DIY #DIYlightpendant


My goal is to try and sell the other two jute pendants on craigslist to try and recoup some of the cost (or come out ahead), but either way, at this point we’re paying half of what we would have new, so it’s still a win while we hold on to the two other sizes and wait for someone to buy them (or for another room we could use them in).

As soon as I had the room painted, I asked Jay if he’d help me get this in the next morning because I had been dying to see this up and y’all it did not disappoint.

So cute though, right? It looks virtually identical to the one I’d been drooling over and it was so much cheaper! Huzza!

You can see how the lightbulb is a bit off to the side, but it’s really not noticeable, and we could eventually get some type of bracket for the inside if it bugs me enough.

Here is another view from straight down below. I love how different this light fixture is, especially compared to the builder grade light we had up in there before. It adds some natural warmth to the space, which is what I was hoping to have with the darker walls.

Here is another shot of it peeking out, so you can see the juxtaposition against the dark nursery walls. Time to get a crib, some bedding, pop up some art – and this room is done! I’ll have a cost breakdown and more room photos up on the blog next week! πŸ™‚

Now I’m conflicted on which light was a better steal, this one, or our $30 ceiling fan for the back patio. We’ll just call them both a win. πŸ™‚

Dark Nursery Ideas


Trimming it Up

This little ladies room is shaping up nicely so far y’all. It took us a few weekends of dedicated time, but we have some sweet trim action going down in the little lassie’s nursery and I’m getting mighty excited to paint this joint now!

#Wainscoting #DIY #HomeDesign #InteriorDesign

So no, we won’t be leaving the trim white against the gray walls, instead we’re going to paint the whole thing – dark!

Like so!

#NurseryDesign #InteriorDesign

{photo cred, Domino Magazine}


I mean, you guys, are you dying? I’m dying. And I’m loving these dark, dark, moody colors that are in right now. Hey – we went dark on H’s room and I’m all about it, so why not 2/2, right?

Here is a darkish (sorry) shot of how the room looks right now from the doorway, so you can get an idea of how the trim is placed.

#InteriorDesign

I knew off the bat that I wanted everything to be as symmetrical as possible with this trim, which did require a fair bit of pre-measuring to 1) make sure we were optimizing each piece of trim (vs. having large sections of waste and 2) to make sure everything would be centered and equal once up on the walls.

#InteriorDesign, #DIY

We left a 5″ gap around the walls and in between each section – you can see here how that looks on the external corner, right before you get to the door to the hallway.

#InteriorDesign #DIY

Now ideally we would not have had to work around outlets with the trim and all of the outlet boxes would have fallen neatly into each one of these boxes we made, but we have a newer house and by george, they sure love their outlets in like 90’s houses and newer man. I’m like NO ONE has this many electronics they need to plug in – for realz.

Since we were not that lucky we just worked around them to the extent we were able.

#InteriorDesign #NurseryDesign

Overall, I’m super happy with how this turned out! For our install, in case anyone is wondering, we just used a nail gun to put each piece in place, and then came through with a very light layer of caulk to help keep each piece in place and not pop out.

#InteriorDesign #DIY

Jay’s finishing up the caulking this week and from there – get ready to see some paint going on y’all!! Can’t wait to have this room prepped and put together with furniture, etc!


#InteriorDesign #DIY

Outdoor Ceiling Fan (For a Steal)

You guys, if I have not sufficiently evangelized you on never buying your stuff new (atleast not straight out of the gate) – let this be another lesson! πŸ˜‰ We scored an outdoor fancy old fan for $30 on craiglist – holla!!

So first, some before shots and back story. This is what our outdoor ceiling looked like.

Adding_Ceiling_Fan_To_Porch

Notice that pretty little plate, mounted smack in the middle? Well we knew it was an electrical box, and as the summer scorched on (North Carolina you guys – it gets hot) we kept thinking to ourselves – we *need* a fan. Our kid absolutely loves to play with his kiddy pool so 9 days out of 10 we’re out there chilling on the porch and getting coached by our 2-year old on acceptable water table behavior. There are more rules to this than you’d first imagine πŸ˜‰

But being cheap, and realizing this definitely fell into the category of non-essential, I refused to buy a brand new one for like $200+ for the styles I loved.

Which is where craigslist comes in!

Ceiling_Fan_Outdoor

I saw this beauty/cutie come up for $30 and I was like whaaaa – Jay, we need to go in the car and get this! It even has an edison bulb already planted in it, which is like $5-$8 right there, haha!

This was also where our whomp whomp moment came in. The next morning we were super excited to install it, when Jay realized that although the box did have electrical, it was definitely missing some key provisions we’d need for installing a ceiling fan.

Installing_Ceiling_Fan

Apparently, you need to have more than just wires to install something as substantial as a fan, which totally makes sense, but was definitely not something that was on my radar until Jay told me no dice.

We realized we needed to buy the thing er jigger (here) and down below that essentially finds beams up above in your ceiling and locks into them, to make sure your ceiling fan, well doesn’t fall on your head mid spin, so it’s a rather important detail! Ceiling_Fan_Mounting We had a 2-day delay while we ordered this guy and waited. But the good news is, here in the South, you almost have to wait until late fall before being outside is actually something you’d want to do, so the timing – all and all – worked perfectly πŸ™‚

Here is the ceiling fan up and running – we love it!


Industrial_Ceiling_Fan

And another shot of the entire porch, which right now only consists of this lonely little bench and our shoe basket.

Ceiling_Fan_Black

Here is a close up of the light fixture portion as well. I love the character it has and truly – for $30 it was a no brainer to drive out to the sticks to pick this beauty up!

Outdoor_Ceiling_Fan

I’m looking forward to having this outside and feel super happy about the price we paid for it, too. It can be so hard to wait for things but I’m really glad we held out and waited for a deal.

Now if someone could coach me on the importance of doing this for say … buying stuff for Henry’s “Big Boy” room and the new addition’s nursery – I might need some encouragement on that front πŸ˜‰

DIY Desk!

We officially have a desk nook and y’all I be all Beyonce crazy in love with this beauty. And beyond being easy on the eyes, it’s as functional as all get out which is probably actually getting it more brownie points than anything for me.

So Jay, knowing he had a crazy wife, who reminds him on the daily that she is now more than *half* way through baking a child and time is of the essence, made the magic happen and got this desk done by my self created deadline of the end of the month, so thank you, husband (you rock).

I mentioned in this post that we decided to keep things a bit more simple, and nix the bookcases (for now) and just get something functional and done.

You can actually see our table top inspiration right outside with our large farmhouse style table. Jay always tells people he built a picnic table when he talks about it, which makes me lol. Do you hear Joanna Gaines calling her tables picnic tables – no – you don’t. We need to work on our marketing pitch πŸ˜€

I’m quasi obsessed with the imperfections in the wood, which kinda make this look like we reclaimed it off the back porch of some 1920’s bungalow. Y’all – these are cheapo lumber 2×10’s that you can get at Home Depot for $8 a piece (for an 8′ board). Hella score, right?

As you can see, one feature, shall we say, of this desk is the ability to have a built-in litter box snuck in for easy storage options. Are these things you think about when you get a cat – no, they’re not, but this litter box is sorta a PITA (hehe – get it?) I mean, whatever, what are you going to do. I bought a smell neutralizer thing a ma jig from Amazon which helps (a lot) but some day when we don’t have cat anymore I won’t persay – miss the litter box presence πŸ˜‰ We bought this “bad air sponge” in our last house to help with a musty smell as well, and I literally swear by it if anyone is looking to knock out a bad smell.

You can see the litter box “rug” sticking out on this longer style photo and I definitely want to replace that with a 4×6 rug that fills out the space a bit more and doesn’t make the litter box part stick out as overtly.

On the opposite side we have space for extra storage, books, whatever. I’m trying to keep it simple though to keep clutter down so I might pop one more basket in there are time, or may just leave it open and accessorize it later πŸ™‚

Off to the left, on our “litter box” side we have the litter and our printer. This is the litter box we purchased which works great and fits in the little cubby spot perfectly!

It feels a lot more functional these days than our before, which was just a console table.

Built_In_Desk_Window