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“Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.”    (Charles Caleb Colton, 1820)

Many people agree that it is best to be yourself, to be your own person.  You should be your own person with your own wants, dreams and personal ways to achieve these things.  However, I also believe the above statement.  I don’t think there is anything wrong with liking something and wanting to recreate it.   I try to copy things that I like, things that I am fond of.  Sometimes I get a “version” that is as good as or better than the original.  Sometimes, though I end up being satisfied with getting “close enough.”

There was an Outlet Center near the Stadium in Hershey.  Ellie and I stopped in last Monday before we went to the Backstreet Boys show.  I enjoyed the kitchen gadget store.  They had so many little doo-dads – I wanted so much!  I ended up with cat bag clips, straw pipe cleaners and reusable silicone straws.  While we were there, we went into some of the high end stores.  Some of these stores were REALLY high end.  I love fashion and all that goes with it.  However, my lifestyle and budget would never, ever allow me to spend so much money for just one individual item.  Even if I had unlimited income, I know myself.  I am a bargain hunter, and I always will be.  Still, I went into these stores.  I kept my eyes wide open, noticing as much as I could.  I noticed the styles of purses, and I noticed the colors of the items on most displays.  I observed the accessories in stores, and kept my eyes on the styles of shoes that seem to be popular, current and in style.  I left the outlets with a pretty good idea of what is in, and what I need to copy.  I will try to buy these items in off brand stores, department stores, discount stores and even in thrift shops.  I saw that one style looking popular for the Fall is a black blazer with a button down white blouse.  The pants they paired with this were a medium blue denim.  The choice on the mannequin had rips in the knees, but I am not a fan of that style.  The shoes with this outfit – simple black flats.  There is no reason I cannot copy this style and achieve this look for much, much less money.

When we were having dinner before the show (at a chain-type restaurant) I looked over the drink menu.  And while I went with my usual favorite (beer), I did read the list of ingredients in different cocktails they made.  To get the exact taste of what they were offering, of course I would have to know how much of this and how much of that (of each component).  The combinations sounded so good together that I figured however my version turns out will be good.  Yes, that is right – they will turn out to be good enough!

Since we wanted to get to the Stadium and get settled in our seats, we skipped dessert.  The menu included items that sounded delicious – oh, if we weren’t so full!  They offered cheesecake with syrup over the top (caramel and raspberry).  I can duplicate this at home – even with store bought cheesecake (though I do make a GREAT homemade cheesecake, thanks to my Mom’s recipe).  They had apple pie, warmed – with vanilla ice cream on top.  Easily copied.  The sundae was a warmed brownie with vanilla ice cream, syrup and whipped cream.  I can (and have) done this before.  There was also some sort of Oreo Cake.  Chris and I had seen this in a diner once.  I made one for him, and although it wasn’t as plush and didn’t have seven layers, the sheet cake with cool whip and crushed Oreos on top satisfied our desires for a copy of what we had seen.  You need to keep your mind open – use your imagination!

It’s nice to pamper yourself.  It really is.  That might be the only chink in my “tightwad armor” if I ever come into money one day.  In my opinion, a massage is one of the greatest things you can have done for yourself.  Other than using some kind of brush or something in the shower (with nice warm water) I really don’t know how to recreate a massage.  You can pamper yourself with an at home pedicure.  It doesn’t even have to be a full pedicure with a polish change.  All you have to do to make your feet feel special is soak them.  You can soak them in a bucket of warm water.  Keep them in the warm water until it starts to cool off.  Depending on how much you like how it is feeling, repeat the process.  Again and again if you would like.  When you are done, dry your feet with a towel or washcloth that will also slough off any skin that loosened from the water.  Then it will be time to rub them in.  Rub them in real good, and for a really perky feeling, use some sort of cream or lotion with peppermint.  That will end your feet pampering with a very nice fresh feeling.  And then put on a pair of your favorite socks!

I like decorating.  I am very happy in my home and want it to look nice.  However, I don’t want to (or can’t, at this point) spend a lot on furnishings and accessories.  I go the copycat route with this as well.  I will look online, in different places, sites etc. to see what the hot trends are now.  I like to know the popular colors.  When I look at different sites, I let my mind wander as to how I can copy these ideas to make them for my own home.  I have found ways to make a fruit display stand using plates and accessories from Dollar Tree.  Yet, I found a way to make it even cheaper – because I got the plates, candlesticks, etc. from Salvation Army.  Spray paining it white, it looked as good if not better than the Dollar Tree version – and my ENTIRE purchase didn’t even come to $2.  You can copy the look of a bedroom set (the bedding), making it close enough with solids – if the magazine or online room has red, white, gray and black – you can achieve this look with solid pillows and pillow cases, curtains – maybe even finding a plaid throw rug with the same colors you like.  Keep in mind that any item in the color scheme can be included in your room.  The key to Decoration copying is patience – always keep your eyes open while out shopping for items to help you recreate the look you want.

The key to being successful with copying is to always be aware, always have your mind working.  Jeff made a reasonable alternative to an expensive cat litter box.  It has worked out very well.  With seven cats, we have to always be on our toes with things, both to ease our daily life with them – as well as to ease our pockets!

What things do you copy?  Would love to hear…

Published by lifeissmashingalways

58 year old Mom with three great sons, and SIX great cats and their wonderful Dad, Jeff... LISA is my name. Life Is Smashing Always comes from the letters in my name...

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