Getting a Pet – Are you Ready?

Everyone loves animals – that’s a given. But are you ready to own a pet? Take this quiz to find out!

Are you ready for a pet-

So, now that the quiz has given you some insight into whether or not you are ready to own a pet, here’s some more information to consider.

Do you have time?

Dogs require walking, play time and training. Do you have time to run home to walk your dog and pick up after it? Do you have time for play sessions and training? Dogs require a lot of time and patience. Imagine a toddler who is dependent on you and constantly makes the same mistakes over and over again. That’s a dog. On the other side, a dog can bring great joy and fulfillment to your life – not to mention some great companionship.

Cats require a lot of patience and effort. Are you ready to start scooping a cat box every few days? Do you have time to cuddle, play, or pick up after the mess your cat will make? Cats might be easier to care for than dogs, but they definitely still take some effort. That being said, there is nothing better than holding a purring cat.

Do you have money?

Pets are expensive and I think that’s what people tend to forget. Food, treats, toys, cat litter can all eat up a portion of your monthly budget. Also, keep in mind you’ll need to plan for vaccinations and the occasional emergency. It’s important to weigh the pros and cons and sometimes you’ll find that the expense is totally worth it.

Owning a pet isn’t an easy decision, but when you are ready you’ll realize it’s one of the best decisions you’ve ever made. Camden is a pet friendly company and the majority of our communities accept cats and dogs. Check with your local community to find out their pet policy!


Reasons Why You Should Rent Instead of Buy


Have you looked around lately?  I have. And you know what I see? Tons of apartment communities being built. Camden itself is bursting with new construction in places like Los Angeles and Texas. It’s a renter’s paradise out there and apartments are becoming the way of the future.

It can be said that most of the population, at some point, wants to own their own home. I mean it is the American Dream, right? Mowing the lawn on Saturdays, picking out a new color for the front door, watching your dog run free in the back yard. There is also this enormous sense of pride and it’s a great investment in the majority of cases. But hold the phone…since when was that the only American Dream?  Can’t renting just be another version of it? As a matter of fact, there are beau coups of perks to renting over buying.

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How to make Fabric Panels that fill a large wall

Easy DIY Wall Décor

Although my blog, Wear + When, typically focuses on fashion, I have also always had a passion for interior decorating. Luckily for me, my husband has pretty much let me have full reign on this matter in our homes. We have lived in our current house for almost two years, and I have enjoyed every minute of decorating it!

One of the biggest challenges I think I face when decorating homes is what to do with large amounts of wall space. I love photos, but it seems like a bit much to do a photo collage on every large wall in my home. When it comes to artwork, I have a hard time finding a piece I love enough to spend the money on it, not to mention it would also have to be the appropriate size.

When we were still living in our old house, I discovered the best (and easiest) little DIY trick to dress up large

DIY Wall Decor

Large Fabric Panel to fill some extra wall space!

walls- I call them High Fashion Fabric Panels. This project was definitely a good Pinterest find!

Here’s everything you need to make your own Fabric Panel:

  • Plywood cut into the size and shape you want (for this project I used two pieces and they just happened to already be the size I needed).
  • Interior fabric of your choice (amount will depend on the size and number of pieces you are making)
  • A staple gun
  • A wall picture hanging wire kit

Once you have your materials, the project is simple! Here’s how to create your custom Fabric Panels:

DIY Wall decor

Attach fabric to back of plywood with a staple gun and hang with a wire picture hanging kit.

1) Just wrap your fabric around the piece of plywood and fold the edges around to the backside of the plywood

2) Using a staple gun, fasten the fabric to the wood.

TIP: Make sure to pull the fabric tight enough from every side before stapling it down, so that it doesn’t ripple anywhere on the front side. You may need a buddy!

3) Once you have your fabric completely attached to the plywood, all you need to do now is attach picture hanging wire to the backside and hang on your wall!

DIY Wall Decor

The final result! These two panels frame the media center nicely and fill large wall space.

I chose to do two pieces to frame our media stand in our family room, however, this project is so versatile that you could add it to any room in an apartment or even in an outdoor space. Living in Houston, TX, I got this fabric from High Fashion Home. I love their selection of fabrics because they are nice, high quality fabrics and have plenty of modern choices. I love to decorate with neutral colors, (most of our house is gray/taupe with some black thrown in) so I wanted to stick with the same color palette when choosing the fabric. I did want something with an eye-catching pattern though to create a little more visual interest around what would have otherwise been a very plain wall.


About Loren: Loren is a recent addition to our guest bloggers at Simply Camden! She is a fashion blogger with a keen eye for home decor. She lives in Houston, TX with her husband and daughter and her two fur babies. Read more of her Bio here.

Orange County’s Best Beaches

Whether you’re a resident or a visitor, Orange County has some of the best beaches, known as the “Orange Coast’. The beach actually stretches 42 miles ranging from broad sand beaches to cove beaches to tide pool areas.  Each beach has something different to offer, whether you want to swim, surf, skim board, or just relax in the beautiful California weather.

Photo by JT Steves

Photo by JT Steves

Huntington Beach

Huntington Beach is one of the most popular beaches and the most vibrant; it is known as “Surf City”.  The beach is over 8 miles long, popular for swimming & surfing and has a bike path for bikers, skaters, & walkers. Huntington is also known for the Pier, Main Street, which has great restaurants & shops, the U.S. Open of Surfing and the AVP Pro Beach Volleyball Tournament.

Newport Beach

Newport Beach was recently named Orange County’s Best Beach by the O.C. Weekly. The wide beach is great for the serious surfer or just the beach goer and has a bike path also. The two piers, Newport and Balboa, are both landmarks for Newport and have restaurants, shops, and a “Fun Zone” with games and rides. Newport Beach has activities for everyone; enjoying the beautiful beach, renting an electric boat, shopping, dining, harbor cruises, and much more!

Photo by

Photo by

Laguna Beach

Laguna Beach is considered the most picturesque beach city; it has been compared with the French Riviera. There is a large beach right downtown with volleyball nets and many restaurants surrounding the beach. Along with the beautiful beach, Laguna is known for the Arts, and host the Sawdust Festival & Pageant of the Masters every year.

Photo by Anne Ackemann

Photo by Anne Ackemann

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Thrift Store Home Décor Tips

Thrift Store Home Décor

In my years of apartment living, I have often found decorating challenging. My fears of putting holes in the walls and my thrifty nature have held me back from buying décor pieces that are large or heavy. So, I looked for some creative, inspiring ways to decorate my home collage-style without putting enormous holes in my wall or bank account. I decorated my entire home from two stores: the thrift store and the craft store. Here are a few tips and tricks that I discovered.

Dining Room Collage Using Pieces Found at a Thrift Store

Open your mind up to using unique pieces on your walls.

1) Open your mind up to using unique pieces on your walls.

I found these vintage chafing dishes at my local thrift store and decided to use them on my dining room wall. I used some wire and gorilla hooks (if you’ve never used these, find out more about these versatile wall savers here) from the craft store to hang them in a collage along with a mirrored frame and handsome fish portrait that I also found in the thrift store. The result is a vintage-inspired look that has a cool 3D element.

Knick Knacks on a Shelf Using Pieces Found at a Thrift Store

Embrace knick-knacks

Knick Knacks on a Shelf Using Pieces Found at a Thrift Store

Several small pieces work together to fill a large space!

2) Embrace knick-knacks

Several small pieces can work together to fill a large space! For the large area above my fireplace I found a small set of shelves and tiny tchotchkes at the thrift store and arranged them in the center of this space. Then, I bought wood letters and white paint at the craft store to fill the excess space. The shelf is hung with small picture frame nails and the letters are on the wall using sticky tack.

Wall Art Using Pieces Found at a Thrift Store

If all else fails, stick to your favorite colors!

3) If all else fails, stick to your favorite colors!

I love being surrounded by calming green tones and I usually gravitate toward sage and moss colors in all my decorating. Whenever I see something in that color family that I like, I usually nab it and assume it’s going to work with something in my home. These three pieces I found at two different thrift stores and they match perfectly with the soft green embroidery in my curtains and bedspread. They are hung with small picture frame nails.

Now, try some of these tips in your Camden apartment just in time for spring!

4 Tips to Stay Healthier at Work

Courtesy of Google

Image Courtesy of

Stay Hydrated

Courtesy of Google

Image courtesy of

Staying hydrated throughout the day is very important and yet easily forgotten. It is recommended to drink 8 glasses of water a day. Staying hydrated throughout the day can help keep up your energy, and helps reduce headaches. Some ways that help me keep up with drinking my eight glasses of water throughout the day is drinking it out of my tumbler or adding lemon, cucumber, and berries to my water.

Meal Prep

Always wondering what you will be eating for lunch while you’re at work can be stressful and usually ends in eating something not very healthy for you. Meal prepping is a great way to avoid eating the bad things as well as saving some money in your pocket. For me Sunday is my meal prepping day. I go to the grocery store, and prep my meals for the week then repeat every Sunday. By planning your meals ahead of time you’ll find it is easier to stay on track.

Keeping Track of Yourself

Courtesy of Google

Image courtesy of

With so many different workout devices to help you keep track of your progress, it’s easier now than ever to keep yourself accountable. There are several different devices that you can find; my personal favorites are Fitbit and the Nike Fuelband. But any kind of devices similar to these will work just fine. These devices you wear and they keep track of how many steps you walk throughout the day, how many calories you have burned and you can enter what you have eaten throughout the day in the app that you download to your phone which syncs with the device. There are also some really awesome apps to help track your progress if you dont want to use the ones that come with the devices. I personally use Map My Run and My Fitness Pal.

Staying Active

Courtesy of Google

Image courtesy of

Trying to fit a workout in your busy work schedule can seem impossible. But I have found if you dedicate working out for one month it will seem like an everyday routine instead of something you have to fit into doing. You will feel better, healthier, and happier once you get yourself into a good workout routine! Don’t forget the Camden Apartments have awesome gyms!

Courtesy of

This Weekend’s Fun is on Bank of America!

Looking for something to do this weekend? How about a fun-filled day of arts and culture at your local museum? Well look no further than the Bank of America card in your pocket!

Bank of America has a unique program for their debit card and credit card customers called Museums on Us®. On the first weekend of every month, any Bank of America card holder can get into over 150 participating museums in the nation for free! All you need to do is show your Bank of America credit card or debit card and your ID at the ticket window and you will get a ticket for admission that day. It’s that easy!

My sister facing off a dinosaur!

My sister facing off a dinosaur!

I have taken advantage of this distinctive perk at science museums, art museums and even the zoo in my hometowns of Houston and Dallas. I actually get excited when the first weekend of the month turns out to be a rainy one because I know that if my plans fail, I can always wander into the museum and have an enlightening day. I’m even signed up for text alerts so that I’m reminded before the first weekend!

Goofing off and learning at the same time- for free!

Goofing off and learning at the same time- for free!

The best news? There is at least one participating museum in every city with a Camden community so Camden residents who are Bank of America customers can start enjoying Museums on Us® this weekend!

Otay Ranch Chow List

Otay Ranch Chow List – Top 5 Picks

How exciting is it to move to a new town and go exploring? The first things we encourage ourselves to do is hunt for something familiar or go bold and discover something new – especially when it comes to food. Instead of checking Yelp reviews, why not rely on experience from a local like me? Having grown up here when this area was just rolling hills and vacant lots, I’ve scoped out a few foodie hotspots in the Southbay, where San Diego keeps a suburban dream in its back pocket. This hidden gem is my home, Otay Ranch.

It’s tough to have a definitive list like this without explaining why, so each restaurant listed here has been categorized accordingly. Whether you are a young couple enjoying your first apartment together or a family that prefers something kid-friendly, there’s a restaurant here for you. Here are my top 5 picks for dinner tonight:


Best Date Night Experience at Savoie Eatery

Best Date Night at Savoie Eatery

Their website proclaims themselves as the “best food in town – where the French and Italian Rivieras meet.” If you don’t believe me, read their reviews. It is conveniently located in the Otay Ranch Towne Center across from the AMC Theaters. Dinner and a movie? Winner, winner chicken dinner! The decor is quite whimsical and you start feeling a bit like Alice lost in Wonderland or maybe like Sleeping Beauty in Disneyland. Beware, if you don’t have a reservation, then be prepared to wait a half hour or more. They are plugged right into Open Table, so make plans ahead of time or give them a call at 619-591-5757.
2015 Birch Road, Ste. 720 , Chula Vista CA 91915 (Image found on Savoie website)

Best Family Friendly Experience at Pho Hiep Grill

Pho Hiep Grill owners

Let’s get this straight – I’m referring to the Eastlake location. It is conveniently located in the Eastlake Villagewalk shopping center where you will also find Trader Joe’s and Sprouts. Just beyond, there is a spectacular coy and turtle pond where your little ones can pay a quarter for fish pellets. Some forewarning – the pellets look like Cheerios so supervision is recommended. Besides the location, their customer service goes a long way towards making you feel welcome. Where else can you find an owner walking from table to table greeting his guests? After chatting with him a bit, he will tell you that the decor is all handcrafted in Vietnam. He takes great pride in his heritage and the quality of his food. This particular location can cater to large families with your choice of dining inside or on the outdoor patio. Pricing for appetizers and meals are in the low range and what you’d likely pay for fast-food not a sit-down place. Score one for family-friendly and two for budget friendly as well!
872 Eastlake Parkway Suite 310 , Chula Vista CA 91914 (Image found at Pho Hiep Grill website)

Best Happy Hour at Romesco’s

Best Happy Hour

It was voted Reader’s Choice Best Restaurant of 2014 by Modern Luxury Riviera San Diego magazine and if this mouthwatering ad for Happy Hour doesn’t get to you, then convince yourself to enjoy one of the most unique happy hour experiences in San Diego. Not only is there live music – and when I mention live music it could be a classically trained violinist, a live band, or a DJ – but there is also a secret bar for those wanting to feel like they’re in a speakeasy.
4346 Bonita Road , Bonita CA 919102 (Image found on Romesco website)

Best Takeout Experience at In-N-Out

Best takeout experience

How familiar are you with their secret menu? Next time you wait in line at the drive-thru, order the 4 by 4 protein style with fries-well topped animal style. Since it’s early beginnings, this fast food chain took no shortcuts and stuck to using fresh ingredients – inevitably staying ahead of competition by catering to millennials who expect “Quality you can taste.” We are lucky to have one of the only In-N-Outs in the Southbay and yes, lines are usually out the door at lunch and dinner!
1725 Eastlake Parkway, Chula Vista CA 91915 (Image found at In-N-Out wallpaper downloads)

Best Place for Late Night Munchies at Lolitas Taco Shop

Best Late Night Munchies

Who else is stoked that they are opening another location? Show of hands please. When it comes to satiating the late night munchie monster, most restaurants open late tend to be of the Mexican flavor. However, when it comes to great Mexican food, Lolitas Taco Shop wins by a landslide. This restaurant is home to tsunami burritos (shrimp and carne asada) and freebies like fresh green onions, spicy carrots and salsa verde. In order to avoid the rush, it is best to call in your order ahead of time.
601-1A East Palomar Street , Chula Vista 91911 (Image found at Lolitas Taco Shop website)

A blog about food does a hungry writer make! If you fly in for a visit or decide to take a job and relocate to San Diego, be sure to stop by Otay Ranch and discover what else can be found in this hidden gem.


IKEA: How I Utilized the Hemnes Collection in My New Apartment Home!


Ikea logo from

We’ve all moved at some point in our lives. Let’s be honest, moving is not fun. I will say, however, that when it comes to buying things for your new apartment (or house), you can make moving enjoyable. Where do I buy most of my home furniture? IKEA! As you may (or may not) have assumed by reading my previous blog posts, I kind of have an obsession with IKEA. I like it because it is affordable and because there are different collections for different levels of taste. Not everyone loves the super modern, clean white furniture. They offer a more timeless, classic collection called Hemnes for those who want something that will not go out of style in a year. At my place, this is what we have.

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A solar eclipse will look like there is a ring of fire around the sun. Cool! 
Photo courtesy of Reuters

Total Eclipse of the (UK’s) Heart

A solar eclipse will look like there is a ring of fire around the sun. Cool!  Photo courtesy of Reuters

A solar eclipse will look like there is a ring of fire around the sun. Cool!
Photo courtesy of Reuters

I have good news and I have bad news. Tomorrow is going to be a super-freaky astronomical day. It is (finally) the vernal equinox, the official start of spring; there is a Supermoon Continue reading