Summer's Simple Syrups

Today I bring to you a delicious treat for the weekend. Consider this, your early happy happy happy hour. Why three?
Because I am sharing today, three DELICIOUS simple syrups that will turn your summer around.

Any party you have? It will now be better.

Any camping trip you go on? Is now taken to the next level.
Any babies you have? They are now cuter.
Any free time you have? You now have more of it.


So, I was really inspired by Emma's Homemade Whiskey Ginger over at A Beautiful Mess. Yes. I am shouting out to them two days in a row. My week has pretty much been inspired by Emma and Elsie. Confession. There I said it.

Back to the good stuff.

I have really wanted to make some simple syrups for our wet bar, for a while now. So I finally did! On top of the Ginger, I also researched some recipes for Basil and Mint simple syrups. What I found was, they are all pretty much the same.

So the basic simple syrup is a 1:1 ratio of sugar to water. Some prefer a lighter version of 1/2:1 sugar to water. And some prefer a richer syrup, with a 2:1 sugar to water. I went with the classic ol' 1:1.

On top of that, you pretty much just throw in a cup or two (1 extra large handful) of the herb of choice. For the ginger root, I used about one cup and a half (make sure you peel it and slice it thinly).

Put all of your ingredients in a pot and simmer on low for about 30-40 minutes.

And then you are done! You can keep simple syrup for up to a month in a sealed jar in the fridge. OH YEA!!! And when you are finished simmering your syrups, keep those ginger slice in a baggie in the freezer. Emma recommended them as a great sugary garnish, and I couldn't agree more.

Lastly, I wanted to share an idea for what to use the simple syrup FOR! I haven't tried them all out yet (I am not a lush people... but maybe just a little), but the one I was most excited about was the ginger.

Last weekend, my good ol' buddy Tim introduced me to the New York Apple flavored Whiskey by Leopolds. And good night. This stuff is like REALLY good adult apple juice. It is already pretty sweet, so I was a little hesitant about mixing it with the ginger simple syrup, but even with just a hit of that potent ginger elixer, this cocktail was JAZZED UP and I can't wait to share it with a pal.

- Leopold's New York Apple Whiskey
- Ice
- Club Soda
- Ginger Simple Syrup
- Ginger candies and mint to garnish

You can pretty much mix it all together to taste, and VOILA! A refreshing and unique new cocktail to share with your buddies.

I can't WAIT to kick my mojitos up a notch with the mint simple syrup.. And to be honest... I have NO idea what I am going to use the basil for yet. But, I have had some delicious cocktails around town that use it and am inspired. Do you have any ideas?
I hope you guys all have a GREAT weekend! I have 0 plans accept for a BBQ on Saturday... Which makes me really REALLY happy.

Let's catch up on Monday!


Happy Birthday to Me...


I purchased this puppy this week. Amazon should be shipping it to my door in 5 DAYS AND IM SO EXCITED!!!

I have been wanting to get one of these babies for a while, but kept putting it off until I had time to do ample research.

And then... All of a sudden... Much to my surprise and delight... The wonderful lady team over at A Beautiful Mess decided to do an entire post on the Wacom Bamboo Connect Pen Tablet. So I says to myself "Self... I love this blog, and especially their post designs... Why don't I just take their word for it?"

So, I do some pricing research, and there is a refurbished model on Amazon for $49.99 and I am SOLD.

And now it's on it's way to my home as you READ THIS.

I am super pumped.

I have tried for many hours to perfect the tablet method with my computer mouse, and it is impossible. Once I have this tablet, the world is at my feet.

Prepare to be scribbled to death.

Thanks to Elsie and Emma for posting this week and re-stoking the tablet fire in my heart.

Thriftarians, If you guys are Adobe Suite users, stay tuned to the Photoshop tutorial series that Elsie and Emma will be doing through the fall. I have a feeling it's going to be the shiz.


YP, Ya Hear?!

Hey Thriftarians!!

Today I come bearing good news and great joy. I have discovered a site that you may or may not want to use and abuse and love.

One of the blogging networks that I am BFFs with is currently hosting a giveaway, and the goal is to have people check out the new Yellow Pages site (available for Mobile too).

At first I was just posting reviews to YP because I wanted to win the grand prize (can you judge me?!?! There's a lot of money on the line here people!) but I have ACTUALLY started using the site now when Burley and I are looking for new places to eat around town! More than that, there are actually reviews of ALL stores around town... So the other day... I actually figured out (through the reviews) which Sherman Williams store in my area had the nicest helpers (and the review was spot on).

So whether you choose to use the site or check it out... that's your call!
but in the meantime, I thought you may enjoy some REALLY quality reading.

Here are all of the reviews I have written hahahaha.

And... If all else fails... And NONE of this is enticing you....

Watch this movie, and thank me later.


Thriftary Dreamin': #1

It has been so warm out in Denver this past week. A bit too hot to sit outside. So instead of sitting outside, I have been dreaming inside about when it cools off (just 15 degrees would be GREAT, heaven) outside, and I have created a version of all the below dreams mish-moshed together into one oasis.

Can you picture it? Big balls of light, mason jars filled with fire flies, rustic barnwood tables and antique dishes, fragrant herbs galore, toss that in with a gorgeous outdoor fire castle and some chandys. Perfection.

So here's to you, outdoor dreams. Hopefully some day you will come true.



What a weekend.

Burley and I (mostly "I" because poor B works weekends), were thankfully able to have some great rest this weekend.

Friday night I had a marathon of an evening. Started with happy hour with Kris and her hubby (who sadly didn't make it into the photo spread... Sorry Tim.. We still love you), a long walk down to Burley's bar to pick him up after work (on foot... Kind of a poor excuse for a cab), and then dinner and drinks to top off the evening.  Yes. A lot of food and drink, but we walked a mile in between so I didn't REALLY want to shoot myself in the morning after recalling the turkey/cream cheese sandwich I inhaled for dinner, but I did just a little bit.

Saturday, we slept in and spent the entire day at the pool. Schwing.

And then Sunday, Burley and I decided to drive into the mountains for the day, drove up Mt. Evans (the highest paved road in the US I might add), talked and prayed about our house situation, and just had a really sweet day re-connecting with eachother and de-stressing about life.

We do have some new dreams and plans that we are looking forward (don't we always?), but the most important thing that I took away from yesterday is that we are the happiest when the days are slow, the food is good, and the mountains are in sight. We are the most joyful when we force ourselves to appreciate now instead of what tomorrow may/could/will bring. We love to dream. We love to be with each other and with God. We look forward to building community and a sense of home wherever our feet are planted.

With all that said, and as hard as it is for me to believe every second of every day, four walls of a house, does not a home make. I really do believe that. Even though this is THRIFTARY after all, and when I have four walls, I nest like it is my job.

We are a home. A strand of three. And in Christ we find our peace and our rest. 

I will keep you posted as our four walls may or may not change in the very near future. But I am re-connected with my husband and my God, and I feel very at home.

Thanks again for your thoughts, prayers, and even anger haha. They really made me feel better after a rough week. You guys are the best.



I don’t know either..
This sign is currently in my front yard…
photo (3)photo (4)
Yes. We just moved in 3 months ago.
More details to come on Monday.
(But now you know why I have no new tutorials and fabulous updates on our new digs).
Lots going on in the Thriftary household. I’ll fill you in next week.
Until then… Have a great weekend folks. As for me, I am going to try my darndest to relax, and trust, and go with the flow, and be silent until I know what do with my life.

Wes Anderson... You may want to read this...

So... I don't see a lot of movies these days. Well, that's not true.

:::Prepare for a bold statement:::

I haven't seen a lot of movies in theaters lately that have been notable enough to talk about.

:::That was a booooold statement:::

But seriously. Have you?

So, last night, Burley and I decided to head out to the Mayan Theater on south Broadway and check out Wes Anderson's newest film, Moonrise Kindgom. Partially because we have really enjoyed his other films, and mostly because Burley and I have equally large crushes on Bill Murray. Burley's may actually be a bit larger than mine. TWSS.

I have to tell you... I don't know if it was just the perfect movie for what I needed last night, or if it was the movie itself, or even just the fact that I could share a bottle of wine next to a really handsome man in a public theater, but this movie quickly became one of my top 5.

It was so innocent, so whimsical, hilarious, perfection. The dialogue was dry and comical, the scenery was like peter pan meets dawsons creek meets leave it to beaver. What? I know. The cast was perfect. I wanted to take the characters home with me and not really have them be part of my family (because per usual, they are pretty crazy), but watch them all the time and laugh and cry with them. Come to think of it, my family's pretty crazy too, so the more the merrier!

The two man adventurers were priceless. So perfectly written. 

So, I won't give you details, or tell you specific lines or songs or moments that were my favorite, because you have to have your own. But seriously, go see this movie this weekend. You won't be dissapointed.

Oh yea... Here's the trailer.


Seriously... Hola Ombre

You won, Thriftarians. After polling facebook, Instagram, and the blog, you all told me (with a resounding "YES" I might add... that I should do it).

Bottom line, if I didn't ACTUALLY want to do it, I probably would have just made something up and not have done it anyways (can you blame me?!)... But I did want to do it. 

And I did.

And I like the results.

A lot.

It's hard to see from an iphone... and that second pic is kind of emo, but I was running out of time. So forgive my emo self.
Julia from Rebelle salon in the Highlands did an INSANE job and gave me exactly what I wanted. 

She even made the blonde a tone that I could wear with or without makeup (this was my request). A true genius. Go check her out! And tell her I sent you, because I told her I would send some people haha.

I will be back tomorrow with some more exiting news about my hair! Just kidding... Hair isn't 3 days worth of exciting, I would say :)

But I will be back. And so should you.


Hola Ombre

I have an appointment at 2:45pm at the hair salon.

I have this thought in mind...

1 | 2
I have cold feet.



Welcome back all ye loyal Thriftarians. It's Monday again! I thought today I would let you play some catch up (get it now?) on life lately. 

It has been a hot minute since I have given you an Insta-Update, so prepare yourself for just that.

1// A trip to Little Man Ice Cream makes any summer day, much more summery 2// About to ride some crazy old amusement rides a Lakeside Amusement Park (yes the first thing that pops up when you Google it is "deaths"... don't let that stop you...) 3// This was in a bathroom @ Lakeside. What a waste 4// Heading to the Platte with some BFFS for the first unsuccessful summer tubing outing! 5// Grey's Anatomy marathon. Best. Day. Ever. 6// I have too many bags 7// Boulder on a Sunday 8// Heading into the best concert I have seen in a LONG time 9// Just bein' super cute 10// Greatest yard sale finds of all time 11// Angry at tea. Want coffee. 12// Burley is a STUDENT! 13// My pretty new shoes that hurt like hell 14// I am being put back on  a cash budget. I THINK I can. I THINK I can. 15// Still attempting the detox. Gross. 16// Day 1 w/ my new bling 17// Day 2 18// OK. Day 3 19// My cute pup 20// Sweet release 21// Zuchinni! It's coming! 22// Brass Armadillo store find #1 23// Brass Armadillo store find #2 24// I wish... 25// Brass Armadillo find #3. Genius. Pirate Macey 26// The standoff 27// Real Macey vs. Pirate Macey 28// Delish 29// Delish 30// Dog park days are the best


And Freckles on my Nose...

Excitement Aboooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooounds!

The weekend is finally here! And I have some great treats to share. If you haven't come across these treats before. You're welcome.

Last weekend, a few of Burley's friends from the bar bought us tickets to go see a taping of eTown at the Boulder Theater. First thing's first.

eTown - Is a REALLY awesome non-profit based in Boulder. Their radio show has been around for 21 years. Their mission is to "educate, entertain and inspire a diverse audience, through music and conversation, to create a socially responsible and environmentally sustainable world." The broadcast was really awesome to watch and be a part of. I am seriously looking forward to heading over to eTown Hall (their renovated church venue) once they start having shows there in July!

And now... for the main attractions...

The two musical guests at eTown that night were The Tallest Man on Earth & The Spring Standards. I was seriously blown away by all of these artists. I was mostly there because I really enjoy The Tallest Man on Earth (and because Burley's chums paid for me to go), but the Spring Standards were a complete surprise enjoyment factor!

The Tallest Man on Earth was a super refreshing performer. It was just him and his guitar for the whole set, but I never took my eyes off of him. His dedication to connecting with his audience is undeniable. His lyrics are beautiful and his dry humor between songs made me want to be his friend. Here is one of my favs off of his new album, There's No Leaving NowYes. I purchased the vinyl, and it's magic.

The Spring Standards had some of the most amazing live harmonies I have heard in a long time. Really fresh. Really lively. I could hear a lot of influences in their music, like Fleet Foxes meets Lana Del Rey ish and then something with a more poppy melody. A good mix if you ask me. This is one of my favs off of THEIR new album, Yellow//Gold. Yes. I also purchased this album on vinyl. And it has made cooking dinner 100 times better.

And that's what I've been doing... all week. Listening to these albums over and over again, and designing a few new projects that I can't WAIT to share with you... including a Thriftary MAKEOVER!! eeeeeeeeeeeeeekkk!

Until then, please enjoy this priceless video that my sister shared with me this morning, and I can't lie, i've watched about 6 times. "you could have hab it aaaaaaaaaall." Does it getter cuter than that?

TTFN my thrifties,

A BS Design

Hola Papas Fritas!

Surprise: I wanted to share with you another completed blog project I've been DYING to post.

I had an absolute blast working with Brittany of Buttons, Birds, and BS (yes, BS is her nickname, yes, that is genius) on her brand spanking new blog design.

Brittany has a super spunky personality, loves vibrant color, quirky patterns, and all things fun in life, basically.

I loved everything about her design, from start to finish. The colors, the inspiration... all of it.

You should head over to Buttons, Birds and BS and check it out!

Oh yea... She is constantly redoing furniture... And it's pretty darn gorgeous.

If you would like to have Thriftary re-design any part of your blog, please feel free to check out my Blog Design menu, and shoot me an email!


What's in your Bag?

Thanks to Walgreens for underwriting this post. I was paid as a member of the Clever Girls Collective, but the content is all mine. Visit

Well boy am I excited to bring this post to you today! I am teaming up with the fabulous Walgreens to bring to you a little thing I like to call "these items are so perfect for your summer bag, and they are available at your local drugstore!" Seriously... the drugstore...

I use about 90% of this stuff religiously, and I am pumped to try out a few of the others!

1// Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer - I use this stuff daily (how novel). It has SPF 30 so I don't have to think twice  when I go out to garden or run  
2// Physicians Formula Organic Wear 2-in-1 Bronzer and Blush Powder - I LOOOOVE this bronzer/blush combo. It's light and airy, and on a summer day its really all you need  
3// Pedi-Scrub Foot Buffer - I am a die-hard foot scrubber. Mostly because I have to be. This one is somehow a 4-in-1 action! I don't know what that means, but I do know that this puppy works like a charm and I won't use another now.
4// Natural Apothecary Hand & Body Lotion in Aloe and Green Tea - This description makes me want to eat it rather than moisturize with it. I can't wait to get my hands on this 98% natural body lotion. The bottle looks delicious too...
5// Burt's Bees Sugar Scrub in Cranberry & Pomegranate - Finding a great exfoliator really changed my life last summer. If you use it just a couple times a week, it not only feels like you're giving yourself a massage, but it gives your skin a clean, soft base before you get some sun. It makes your tan last longer, while also making your skin a bit more radiant! Double whammy.
6// Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunblock (SPF 30) - This stuff is essential in the summer. Its small, you can keep it in your bag, it really is dry to the touch, so you don't feel like you're wearing sunblock! For a person who usually rebels against the block, this stuff passed the test for me.
7// essie - nail polish - I have found that this is one of the longest lasting nail colors out there (and I buy a LOT of nail color). I also really love their colors, especially for summer. I am slowly converting my entire collection of polishes to essie. It's a bit more expensive, but totally worth it!
8// Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine - If we haven't met in person (anywhere but Colorado) you will not know that my head of hair is a total frizz fest. Always. When we lived in Atlanta it was untameable. However, this stuff REALLY helped me out in the summers. So though I don't need it as much during the dry Colorado summers, I needed to pass the wisdom along...
9// Wet n' Wild Lipstick in Just Peachy - I have to give all the credit to my sister on this one. She sent me a tube in the mail and told me it would change my life. And it has. It is the PERFECT color for your tan, and the kicker is it costs $0.99!! That's right... 99 cents. Make sure you moisturize those smackers before you put this stuff on. And if you see me this summer, there is a 99% chance that I will be sporting Just Peachy.

Dangit... Now I am so cranky that I am still inside while writing this post. It has made me want to stuff my bag with all of these summer necessities, hop in the car, and drive to the beach (trust me... It's a long drive...).

It's OK, maybe today I will just exfoliate with some summery sugar scrub, wear my Just Peachy, and sit in the back yard with a book.  Yea... That's what I will do...

Do you guys have any products that you can't live without in the summer? I found most of the products mentioned above through a friend's recommendation... so friends... What are your summer bag non-negotiables?


10 lbs in 10 days?

Got your attention there didn’t I? Well, I couldn’t have ALL the fun without you.

So truth be told, I haven’t really done much to help my body since I finished the half marathon a few weeks ago. So, I decided it was time to kick off my “Ok-Seriously-Now-Maddie-Let’s-Treat-Our-Body-Right-And-be-Nice-to-it-Again” phase. How am I doing that? Oh, thanks for asking!

My wonderful sister and mother-in-love (and Burley for the beginning phase) are also accompanying me on this journey, which I am STOKED about.

So this morning we all kicked off day 1 (fruit day). Not too shabby!

If you are curious about the reasoning of this detox diet, you can read up on it here.
If you are wondering where I got this lovely print-out that summarizes it in an oh-so-easy fashion, you can check it out here.
You can read the details of each day’s menu, and why you are eating what you eat each day, here.
There is also a wonder soup that you are able to eat throughout the cleanse, you can get that recipe, here.
(I won’t be using the wonder soup until day 4). That’s right… banana day…

So feel free to join! I would love to see what kind of results we all get after the 7 days. More importantly, I have never really TRULY stuck to a detox/cleanse plan before, and I can’t wait to feel it rejuvenate my body and get everything back into high-performance gear for the remainder of my weight loss goals ahead.


Friday, Cryday.

We made it! Another glorious summer weekend is upon us folks…
Today I want to share with you, two things that made me cry this week. Sounds exciting right?
Seriously though… This first one is a GOOD cry.

Here’s the first thing. Yesterday, Tom Hanks shared the sweetest video ever with me and all of his other twitter followers.It’s like he knows me so well, that he knew that I would LOVE this video, and it would make me good cry.
Tom is really funny/thoughtful like that.

Now I knooooooooooooow you guys are probably over the whole “check out how crazy my proposal is, because I am singing/flashmobing/dancing/flashing/flying/superhero powering my fiance!” thing… but… You NEED to watch just one more. Because it will change your life. and I love this song. And the girls reaction is so genuine and precious… That it made me REALLY want to be her friend!

So girl, if you are one of the 1 persons that reads my blogs.. Please contact me at one of my easily accessible social media outlets, found in my right sidebar!
Are you crying? Yea. I thought so.

Just an FYI, the best part of this video is the group’s interpretation of “Dancing Juice” as “Dancing Jews.”

Here’s the second thing. I know I am really behind because I haven’t had cable for centuries months, but I was catching up on SNL this week. I had heard wind of the worst thing in the world happening, but I wouldn’t believe it until I saw it.

And this week… I saw it.
This is a horrible video… but I swear it’s the best that Youtube had to offer.
… And weeping. I love you girl. Uh, I just love you so much.
Have a great weekend, Thriftarians! I’ll miss you!

Sneeze in THIS!

I think that creating or even purchasing a great gift for a guy (awesome, functional, thoughty) is one of the hardest things ever. In life. I can't even tell you how many times the thought of having to come up with a gift like this has stressed me out!

But today, I come to you with the perfect gift for any significant other.

This "Mankerchief" appropriately named by moi (get it? a handkerchief and a man? mankerchief?) is easily personalized, classy, function, and for sure AWESOME.

I thought of making one of these guys after realizing that the 2 year anniversary is signified by a token of cloth. I was NOT about to buy my Burley a shirt to celebrate two years of marriage... So I went with the mankerchief instead. And now, I'll tell you how I made it!

Step 1: Let your puppy (whom your significant other also loves dearly) lay all over the fabric prior to starting your creation of this token. After all, the more love that goes into it, the better the final project will be.

Step 2: Iron out your fabrics so that you start with a clean canvas. I decided to use 2 fabrics I had lying around in order to get the double sided look. After making my first mankerchief, I would honestly suggest purchasing some nicer fabric, so that you do not have to layer it. I think the final project would be more multi-functional this way. Just a thought.

Step 3: If you are using two different fabrics, lay them out with right sides facing each other. If you are only using 1 type of fabric, just lay it out there all by its lonesome.
Then, cut a square that is about 14in x 14in. The final product should be around 12in x 12in (the proper mankerchief size) so this will give you some room to fold edges and clean it up. If you are using two types of fabric, be sure to use pins to hold it in place. 

Step 4: If you are using two types of fabric, you are going to start by sewing both pieces together (right sides facing inwards) and then do the ol' leave-a-small-space-in-the-corner-and-turn-that-thing-inside-out trick. Once you have your two sides sewn together (or if you are just using 1 piece of fabric) you will then fold the edges in about 1/2in on all sides. Be sure to pin during this step to keep the edges even on all sides. Then sew away! You can be as creative or as straight-forward with your stitch as you like. I kept mine classic (AKA easy because I am not a very good seamstress). If you are a baller, knock yourself out!

Step 5: Shouldn't this step be completed prior to sewing these two fabrics together? Why yes! Thanks for noticing! 
If you are using two types of fabric for your mankerchief, it would be far easier to sew your sweet nothings onto the fabric BEFORE you sew both pieces together... Just a thought...
But, if you do everything backwards like me, just carefully stitch your message on there. Carefully.

Step 6: You're done! Sit back and relax, know that you just made the coolest gift your guy will ever receive.

 Step 7: Then wrap it, of course!

And that is all! if you decide to make one of these for a lady, I believe the appropriate size would be a 10in x 10in, so keep that in mind. Also keep in mind that you would no longer be able to call it a mankerchief... It would probably be something more like a girlkerchief.... or a ladkercheif... or a femeninikerchief... You can choose from one of those...

That's all folks! I hope the tutorial was helpful.

Go mankerchief, you crazy kids!

In other news, you can also head over to Carina's super cute blog, today to enter her birthday giveaway! Thriftary may just be in the lineup... Just maybe...