Board Games for Two

I’m a little bit of a game enthusiast.  Every once in a while, I have to get rid of games in order to make room for more.  I love to go to secondhand shops and rummage through the games.  Occasionally I have to make a couple pieces or substitute parts it’s missing but it’s worth it when you get a game like Bezzerwizzer, that’s normally around $50, for $2.

Ty and I love to play games together.  We actually have tried to play every three+ player game we have with two people.  I have learned there is absolutely no way to play Clue with two players, but Outburst is pretty easy to make into a two player dual.

I am part of Amazon’s affiliate program, this means if you follow the links on my site and make a purchase, I’ll receive commission, which helps keep this site running.

Here are five board games we love to play together:

  1. Parcheesi
    The version we have is Pacheesi, which is the same, just a cheaper version with a smaller board.  We like to play with a couple house rules I grew up with (didn’t know they were house rules at the time) to make the game a little more interesting.  In this game, the goal is to get your four pawns around the board and into your home.  However, it’s not that easy.  You can use your pawns to form blockades that other players can’t get past or hop safe spaces to your home.  Also, if you knock someone out you can move an additional 20 spaces.  Sometimes, we like to play this where each of us controls two different colors, if we’re feeling a little wild that night.


  2. Monopoly
    We have the Monopoly Here and Now: World Edition, which we found for four dollars at a used bookstore in Tennessee.  I just love a good game steal, and it was even better that all the pieces were still in tact.  This game comes with six game tokens, which are different in every box, representing things from around the world.  The big difference between this version and the original is the money.  First, the money is in thousands and millions, which was easy to get used to.  The big difference is there is no paper money.  Instead of paper money, everyone has a plastic credit card and an electronic banking unit is used to track payments and balances.  I was a little skeptical at first, but I actually don’t mind playing with it, it’s pretty simple to use and makes it easy to set the game up.  When we have the time to play, it’s fun to purchase and trade different places around the world in this classic, wonderful game.

    This is the game all set up:

  3. Life
    Again, we have a different version from the original.  We have the Life: Simpsons Edition version of the game.  When my parents were getting rid of some of their games, I was lucky enough to inherit it.  This game is the same as the original, but each space is characterized by Simpsons culture and events from the show.  In this version you can adopt Sherri and Terri, become Mr. Plow, and reap the benefits for being mistaken as Mr. Burns heir.  This game is nostalgic for me, having grown up with the Simpsons, and having played a lot of Life.  I like to play Life whenever I want to play a long game, but not necessarily Monopoly long.

  4. Bezzerwizzer
    Last night I actually played this game for the millionth time, and still there are plenty of questions in this trivia game I haven’t come across.  In Bezzerwizzer, there are 20 different categories like technology, humans, sports and games, science, nature, traditions and beliefs, business world, and the one we dread, architecture.  Each round you choose four categories at random and arrange them according to which you think you have a better chance at.  For example, I would put humans in my four point slot, whereas I would put architecture in my one point slot.  Then each player gets a chance to swap or Zwap their tiles with another person’s on their turn, once per round.  This is when I would switch my architecture tile for a science tile and stick Ty with architecture.  Mwahaha!  In addition, each player has a chance to piggyback on a question using one Bezzerwizzer tile, up to two each round.  If you throw your Bezzerwizzer tile in because you are great at the science category and the opponent gets it wrong, then you get a chance to steal that question for three points.  I enjoy this game, because it’s a trivia game I actually have a chance at, as long as the architecture and sports questions come at a minimum.


  5. Risk
    This is actually a game I don’t own, but is at the top of my game wish list.  I grew up playing the 1980 version, and apparently there are a lot of different versions these days.  Personally, I’d be okay with owning the Star Wars or Marvel versions of the game.  We used to reserve this game for weekends or snow days, because it can take a lot of time.  Each player in the game is given troops, and countries they have power over.  The game is played carrying out dice wars that determine who gets to own each country, until one player has succeeded in world domination.  Risk is well worth playing if you have the time.

These are just a few of the board games I love.  It’s hard to find board games for two, so Ty and I play a lot of card and dexterity games as well.

If there are any two player board games you want to recommend, please share in the comments below : )

☮ Madison

St. Patrick’s Day Drink

 Happy St. Patrick’s day!  In honor of this holiday, I’ve spent some time in my kitchen creating a drink that was equal parts green and feisty.  This drink is very easy to make, and friendly to substitutions. If you want to get extra fancy and make a punch, I’ve included a recipe for that as well! : )

I am part of Amazon’s affiliate program, this means if you follow the links on my site and make a purchase, I’ll receive commission, which helps keep this site running.


St. Patrick’s Day Spritzer:
serves 1
-5 oz Smirnoff Green Apple
One pint will make three drinks
-1 shot Smirnoff Pineapple Vodka
You could try it with another type of vodka you have on hand, if your feeling dangerous
-3 chunks of pineapple
About a quarter cup, you could substitute one shot of pineapple juice
-3 drops of lime juice (optional)
Can use a 1/4 lime
-2 teaspoons green food coloring (optional)
I’ve included a recipe below if you would like to make your own natural food coloring

Step 1: Using a blender or food processor (I used my Magic Bullet), combine the Smirnoff Pineapple Rum and pineapple chunks.

Step 2: Pour in a glass

Step 3: Add Smirnoff Green Apple, green food coloring, and lime juice

 

If you would like to make this drink greener, you can add up to two teaspoons of your own natural food coloring (it’s very easy).
To make, add 1/2 cup frozen spinach (you won’t taste it) and 2 tablespoons of water to your food processor or blender.
Just blend and use a mesh strainer to collect the food coloring.
For more information, or to make with fresh spinach you can visit this link.

  

And the finished drink, settled with the food coloring included:


Ingredients for St. Patrick’s Day Spritzer Punch:
Serves 3-4
-1 Pint Smirnoff Green Apple
-4 shots pineapple rum
-12 chunks or one cup of pineapple
4 ounces of pineapple juice can be substituted
-12 drops of lime juice
1/2 a fresh lime can be substituted
-1 cup sherbet
-2 Tablespoons green food coloring (optional)
Easy natural food coloring recipe above

 

Step 1: Using a blender or food processor, combine the Smirnoff Pineapple Rum and pineapple chunks.

Step 2: Pour in a bowl

Step 3: Add Smirnoff Green Apple, sherbet, green food coloring, and lime juice

 What are you guys making tonight?

☮ Madison

How to Freeze Coconut Milk

I hate waste.  I compost or recycle when I can, but I’ve also found I can freeze a ton of things I would have otherwise had to get rid of.  After I’ve opened a can of coconut milk I freeze the remainings and use them to make more leave in conditioner, cook, make smoothies, or I throw a couple cubes in my chai or other black tea : )

I am part of Amazon’s affiliate program, this means if you follow the links on my site and make a purchase, I’ll receive commission, which helps keep this site running.

Supplies:
> Can of coconut milk
> 2-3 ice cube trays
> Tablespoon

Step 1: Shake can, or stir until combined
I like to shake the can, then pour it into a deep mug

Step 2: Place 1 Tablespoon of coconut milk in each tray slot
A whole can will fill 2 trays and still have a little more left

 

Step 3: Freeze! It takes about 3 hours

Step 4: Store in a freezer bag for up to 3 months

To thaw cubes, microwave for 20 seconds!

 

☮ Madison

DIY Hemp Jewelry Display and Storage

I would have to say necklaces are my favorite accessory and that being said, I have accumulated many over the years.  So when I moved into my last place I wanted something aesthetically pleasing that would also allow me access to all of my necklaces in the most affordable way possible.  With a ball of hemp, some screw eyes, and a helpful creative friend we set to work.

Now, in a new place with walls to fill up, I’m excited to be able to make it again and share the process!

I am part of Amazon’s affiliate program, this means if you follow the links on my site and make a purchase, I’ll receive commission, which helps keep this site running.

Supplies:
> Hemp – 9 pieces, each 30 inches, thinner hemp works better

> Screw Eyes – 6
> Clothespins
> Scissors (ones I used & cost effective option)
> Pencil (optional)

Step one: Position your hooks
– Measure your wall
– Decide how far in, how long, and the amount of distance vertically apart you want your rows to be
Since my wall is 40 inches long, I decided I wanted to position my rows 7 inches from the edge of the walls, leaving me a 26 inch row.  Then, using a pencil, I made a small x where I wanted each screw to be.  Vertically, I marked spots 6 inches apart.  If you have the space (or height to reach) I recommend having your screw eyes 8-10 inches apart.

Step two: Insert your hooks
It helps to nail a small hole, then twist the hooks in manually

Step 3: Secure hemp to hook
-Tie a knot using three pieces of hemp
-Tie a knot using two of the loose strings from the first knot

Step 4: Braid hemp loosely using a traditional braid
-All of the string may not be used
-Braid until your preferred length, I like mine to droop a little

Step 5: Secure hemp to opposite side
-Use the same method in Step 3

Step 6: Repeat steps 3-5 on the other rows

Step 7: Use scissors to trim excess string

Step 8: Hang jewelry with clothespins

That’s it! I like to put anything I can on mine, including necklaces, headbands, bracelets, arm and leg chains, gypsy crowns, bows, and name tags.


If you decide to create one, I’d love to see what you come up with.  Share with #canievendiy over on instagram : )
Questions or speculations? Leave a comment!

☮ Madison

The First Steps to Take When Starting a Blog

If you plan on blogging part time or full time, you need to have a good hosting site, unless you are a coding ninja.  If you are a coding ninja, you don’t need to read this, go about with your espionage.  Really though, a hosting service will aid in your blog’s success.  If you plan on using WordPress, I recommend signing up for your WordPress domain through Bluehost for a quick start up.  When I first dove into the blogging world, I signed up for a WordPress domain, but I wish I had gotten my domain through Bluehost originally to forego the transfer process.  Once you sign up, you just have a one click install process to start using Bluehost’s website customization tools.

I am part of Bluehost’s affiliate program, this means if you decide to purchase and stay with their hosting services I’ll receive commission, which helps keep this site running.

Reasons to Use Bluehost

Technology
At first, the very thought of everything I had to do and figure out was overwhelming.  As I started setting up my site though, I discovered all the resources I had available to me.  There are numerous help forums on their site, 24/7  call/chat tech support (great for a night owl) with  real people, and numerous themes and plugins to choose from.
Price
Their prices really are pretty excellent.  The first year is only $3.95 a month, and afterwords it varies depending on which plan you choose.  You can choose a plan as short as 1 month, and as long as 60 months.  Of course, it’s cheaper the longer the plan you sign up for, I currently pay by the year which is $8.99 a month and very competitive.  When I first saw the bill I was about to pay when renewing, I compared other hosting sites to decide whether or not I wanted to stick around, and I am so glad I did.  Bluehost has a ton of free content, hosting is the only thing I have to pay for to run my blog.
Traffic
If my site ever becomes busy with traffic, users won’t have a slow experience on my site, Bluehost is equipped to handle spikes.

After you have a hosting site, you’re ready to start taking steps to have a successful blog.  These can be helpful whether or not you plan on being a part time blogger, alike myself, or a full time blogger.

 

 

 

How to Start a Blog

  1. Determine your focus
    Content is the most important thing for your blog and should not be rushed.  A good blog post can take anywhere from 2 and a half hours to 12 hours.  Before you hit publish a lot goes into play, including: writing, editing, styling, and search engine optimizing. This being said, it helps to have your content planned out.  Before you go and start planning your content though, you should determine what you want your blog’s focus to be.  Readers like blogs with a focus because they know what to expect when they come to your site.  Another bonus, this will help you decide what you want to write about.   Once you have determined your blog’s categories and subtopics to focus on, you can plan posts to fit into them.  It helps to plan at least three months of content ahead of time, I aim to have six months planned at a time.  Decide how many days a week you want to post and make your schedule clear to your audience.  Post only as much as you can guarantee great content and quality photos.  Personally, as I consider myself a part time blogger, I post once a week and spend the rest of my time brainstorming ideas, developing, promoting, and optimizing my content.  Another thing that will help you would be to create a backlog of content, something I’m getting into the habit of doing by writing all my posts the month ahead.  Having a backlog of 3-5 posts will help you when life happens.  Finally, have a mission statement.  This doesn’t have to be on your blog, just know what to tell people when they ask what your blog is about and be confident about it.
  2. Set up your site
    I’ve already established content is the life of your blog, and you should cater your site design to it.  Make it easy for the reader to see your content.  Sites that are too busy will turn the reader off, sites that are more minimal tend to do better.  Take advantage of the resources available to you when creating your site.  YouTube videos, google searches, and blogs are all useful tools for everyone when building a blog.  The Blog Stylist has a free e-course that is great for beginning to learn the tech on your site.  If using Bluehost, take advantage of the free themes and plugins you have available to make your life easier.  It’s important to remember you can always pay someone eventually to help you take your blog to the next level.  I’ll be damned if I don’t have Promise Tangeman restyle my blog one day, and I want someone with a little more logo knowledge to help me up my game in that department.
  3. Learn the legal side
    It is so vital to know the laws on blogging from the very beginning.  Have a copyright statement and privacy statement before you begin to publish so you can protect yourself and your content.  Be familiar with affiliate disclosure law, as this is something that could save you.  My go to for all things legal is Jade and Oak, which is run by Jackie, a certified lawyer, with a lot of great and free resources.
  4. Socialize
    Get the word out, shout from the rooftops, and don’t hide your blog.  Your blog will thrive if you share your content online, schedule it if you think that would work for you.  Intend to keep up with two to four social medias and devote most of your attention to one of these, preferably the one you’ll be able to reach a larger audience on.  Having a social media plan like this will help you in the long run.  Reaching out to other bloggers, posting comments on other sites you admire (without being spammy), guest posting, responding to comments, and keeping up with your over-piling emails will have a substantial effect on your success.
  5. Get that money
    Start monetizing your site from the very beginning.  Be creative with the way you earn money from your site.  Just a few options you can use to monetize are affiliates, reaching out to brands to sponsor a post, advertisements in your sidebar, or you could even write an e-course.  Don’t let your site be too spammy though, keep it light, and keep in mind it’s more to your advantage and well being to advertise what you support. As a brand new blogger, I use Amazon Affiliates, Google Ads, and Bluehost to monetize.  Eventually I would like to cut down on the Google ads, have one sponsored post a month, and paid advertising slots, but that will happen in time when I have more to offer to brands.



Good luck in all your endeavors in blogging, and welcome to the community.  Share your blog in the comments  : )

Madison

Note: This page will be updated as I learn more about this world of blogging, and optimized to help you become successful as a blogger.  Follow along on my income reports, as I find out what works and what doesn’t.

Updated: 5/10/17