Toddler Tea Parties are easy with Finish dishwasher cleaner! #SparklySavings #CollectiveBias #shop

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias

“Mommy, let’s play tea pot!” That is C’s way of requesting a tea party. He enjoys pretending to pour tea for Baby Jo and me, serve us cookies or scones, and take turns using the tea pot. I wanted to create a special memory for him, so I decided we would have a tea party with real food and beverages. I needed a great deal on dishwasher detergent. Who has the time to hand wash a bunch of toddler tea party dishes? Not me! I headed to Walmart for apples, crackers and dishwasher detergent for our party.

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Homemade Baby Wipes

I am a Simply Aroma Independent Consultant. This post contains links to my business page.

Paying full price for baby wipes? No, thank you. I don’t even like buying baby wipes on sale. They’re expensive! I started making homemade baby wipes about a year ago, and I’ve since perfected our “recipe.” With the exception of cutting a paper towel roll in half, the process of making homemade baby wipes is simple. Baby Jo has a tendency to get diaper rash but when I add lavender essential oil to her wipes, her skin stays smooth and healthy.

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Clip coupons at the speed of life! #WalgreensPaperless #shop

Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias

I am wholeheartedly in denial that summer is almost over, older kids are going back to school, and Hubster will soon be welcoming a bunch of new students to campus! It was great that our summer was filled with family, friends and fun events; but it flew by as we rushed from one activity to the next. You all know how frugal I am and it bothered me that I didn’t have time to clip coupons this summer. Walgreens paperless coupons helped me save money on our summer essentials efficiently without taking time away from our busy life.

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Grab your Huggies Costco Promotional Coupon! #MC #SnugandDryPlus

I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Huggies® Brand. I received product samples to facilitate my review and a promotional item to thank me for participating.

Buying diapers and wipes can put stress on the budget, but it’s not like you can go without them either. Babies are expensive! I’m always looking for a good deal and a great value when it comes to these kinds of purchases. I think Huggies® Snug and Dry Plus Diapers and Huggies Natural Care® Plus Wipes at Costco are something that I can feel good about purchasing.

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3 Do’s & Don’ts of Consignment Events

3 Do's & Don'ts of Consignment Events

Go ahead and call me crazy, but there are few things that get me more excited than saving loads of money. Children take up very little space themselves but they require an enormous amount of stuff. It’s disproportionate, really. All that stuff costs a small fortune. At first, it was tempting to buy everything brand new so that my child was the first child to have ever touched this book or that blanket. I’ve lived and learned that kids don’t really need brand new stuff. Even used kids items are often like-new because kids outgrow things so quickly! I love to shop consignment now. I can find things for a fraction of the cost – sometimes with the tags still on them. Cha-ching!

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We’re a TOMS Family Now!

TOMS family

Thanks to the recent Zulily sale, each member of our family now owns a pair of TOMS!  They’re actually more comfortable than I expected, although I won’t be wearing them regularly until after I have Baby Deuce.  My swollen pregnant feet barely fit in them.

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Back Into Couponing!

While I was super sick in the fall and early winter, I decided not to coupon.  I just didn’t have time or energy.  That’s what is nice about having a stockpile of necessities – we only had to buy one or two necessities during those months without coupons!

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Shopping For Your Kids on a Budget

This post is featured on behalf of Polarn O. Pyret
shopping for kids on a budget 1

Buying clothes for your kids can be expensive, what with them growing all the time and changing their tastes in fashion as they get older. However, shopping on a budget is possible by knowing where to go for discounts, which outlets sell the cheapest clothes and when to buy.

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7 Tips to Save Your Family More Than $4,000/Year

7 Tips to Save More Than 4000 Year.jpg

We all like to save money.  What started out as a necessity in our household has become somewhat of a game for me.  How much money can I save during this shopping trip?  How can we save an extra $20 this month?  Can we get by on $25 worth of groceries this week (without going hungry)?  It’s my own personal challenge. ;)

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Define Necessity

I saw this image going around Facebook the entire week of Thanksgiving, and it struck a chord with me.

Courtesy of planetsmith.wordpress.com

I’ve been trying to live by this philosophy for quite a while.  When Hubster was in grad school and I got pregnant with C/lost my job/dropped out of grad school, we ended up living below the federal poverty line for two years.  I became somewhat of a wizard with our finances.  We sold things that we didn’t need.  We started grocery shopping at Aldi or buying only sale items at the bigger grocery stores.  I learned how to coupon, and then how to coupon effectively by matching manufacturer coupons with store sales and incentives.  We cut unnecessary expenses out of our lives.  We bought each other a joint Christmas gift instead of numerous gifts, and we bought them on Black Friday so that we saved the maximum amount of money on them.

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Buying a Van

Now that we’re expecting Baby Deuce, we need to upgrade from our economy-size car to something a little more…two-carseat friendly.  We’ve decided to purchase a van.

One part of me is kicking and screaming, “Noooo, not a van!!!”  Then there’s the practical side of me that knows a vehicle is a huge money commitment and we don’t want to end up in this same situation two years from now if I get pregnant with #3.  That is a complete what-if, so don’t go getting any ideas.  ;)

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C’s Fall Wardrobe

I’ve been doing a lot of shopping in thrift and new-to-you stores as well as every clearance section I can think of while I try to assemble C’s fall and winter wardrobe.  I scored big time at Once Upon A Child, a chain resale store for kids’ items, and had to share some pics with you!  I spent $65 and got all of these things for C:

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Craigslist, “Pre-Sales,” and Rummages

I’m a little late to the game, but now that rummage sale season is almost over I realized that I need a fall/winter wardrobe for C.  I’ve been perusing Craigslist a lot and have been seeing some things that confuzzle me.  Yes, confuzzle.  ;)

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Why New Parents Must Go To Yard Sales by Jason Ross {Guest Post}

I’m pleased to welcome Jason Ross today!  His blog is filled with awesome parenting tips, and I enjoy reading his perspective.  Thanks for being here, Jason!

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Jason Ross is a proud father of a 1 year old daughter, Abby, and blogging partner of Lauren Ross.  Not too long after his daughter was born he began blogging on Ordinary Parent as a way to offer his thoughts, opinions, and stories of parenthood that may help other parents, or expectant parents, along their journey.  His wife, Lauren, joins him with frequent posts as well. They are a couple ordinary parents, offering their advice for other ordinary parents. 

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Another Day, Another Dollar

It’s the beginning of a new week, which means that I have my coupons clipped, scouted the best deals, and sorted lists and coupons by store!

Ready, Set, Save!

I’m so glad that I’m able to contribute to our finances with couponing.  Standing at the checkout and watching my total come down with the scanning of each coupon is an awesome high.  It’s like a game to see what I can get for $1 or less each week. :)

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Kids Consignment Sales

I noticed on Facebook last night that there was going to be a kids consignment sale at our local event center this weekend.  We decided to check it out and I’m so glad that we did!  We found a crib mattress for C for only $25!  Once we move, we’re going to have him sleep in a crib instead of the pack ‘n’ play.  Now we don’t need to pay retail for a mattress!  I also found some sleepers for him, all under $3, a $3 board book and a $5 Melissa & Doug puzzle.

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Simplifying

We’re moving in two-ish months to a new state.  A lot has changed about our life since we first moved here two years ago.  Instead of getting my graduate degree, I became a mother who works at home.  We have a rapidly growing, wild, delightful little boy who enjoys exploring our apartment.  We’ve really outgrown this one-bedroom space.  Honestly, there’s quite a bit of stuff that we have in this apartment that we really won’t use anymore in this new chapter of our lives.

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Guest Post: DIY Baby Wipes by SupermomInTheMaking

Today, we have another guest post from my friend Rachel, from Supermom In The Making.  She blogs about the adventures of making it work with two hands and three babies.  Rachel is a mom to three children under the age of two, including 1-year-old twin girls.  Below, she teaches us how to save money by making our own baby wipes.  Enjoy!
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Finding Baby Clothes on Consignment

The midwest is experiencing an unseasonably warm spring (as in, temperatures 30 degrees higher than normal), and I realized that all of the shorts I have for C are a size too big.  ARGH.  Um, weather, didn’t you know that I don’t want to spend money buying C more clothes that he’ll only wear for a short period of time??!!

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Sensory Bottles

DIY Sensory Bottles

My Pinterest addiction has introduced me to several new ideas for fun things to do with C, including making sensory bottles for him.  I had a lot of fun browsing the aisles of my local craft store for fun items to put inside of these.

Sensory Bottle Items

I came up with some glitter, confetti, pom poms, dice, beads, and ribbon.  Did you notice the awesome “C” ribbon?  I couldn’t resist!

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Guest Post: 5 Nifty Thrifty DIY Tips!

Today, we have a guest post from my dear friend Rachel, from Supermom In The Making.  She blogs about the adventures of making it work with two hands and three babies.  Rachel is a mom to three children under the age of two, including 10-month-old twin girls.  Sometimes I truly wonder how she does it all! ;)  Below, she clues you in on some of her ultra-thrifty DIY tips.  Enjoy!

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Couponing 201: Strategy and Cost Standards

Here is lesson two in my couponing series!  You can find the first one, Couponing 101, here.  Today we’ll go more in-depth about couponing strategy.

I’ve found that it’s best to purchase two newspapers each week.  Be sure to check to see if the coupon inserts are inside before buying your papers!  There are people that steal coupon inserts or sometimes a paper gets missed in the stuffing process, but you don’t want to get home and discover that they’re missing.

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Couponing 101

By popular demand, I bring to you some basic couponing tips!  A coworker of Hubster’s taught me how to coupon nearly five months ago and it has become a hobby of mine.  The following are tips that she taught me as well as things that I have learned since I started couponing.  Happy savings!

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This Week’s Deals Around Town

I’ve recently gotten into couponing and here are the deals that I found around town this week:

Target
Buy 10 SmartWater (20 oz)  or VitaminWater for $10, get a 6-pk of 20 oz SmartWater free
There are B2G1 coupons on Target.com for VitaminWater.  I chose to get SmartWater, so ended up getting 16 bottles for about 62.5 cents each.  The savings will be greater if you use 2 of those coupons and get VitaminWater.

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I got $40-worth of stuff for $0.66 at CVS!

This was my first week of 98% savings and I am SO excited!

The original price of the merchandise was $40.03, minus the sale prices from my CVS card, a few manufacturer coupons, and some ExtraBucks that I had earned last week…and I only paid $0.66 out of pocket and even walked out with $8.79 in ExtraBucks that I can use in the next few weeks.  :)

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Embracing My Inner Maxx-inista

I *love* TJ Maxx.  And Marshall’s.  And Ross.

haha, I love pretty much any of those stores where you can get higher-end items for great deals.  Tonight we went to TJ Maxx and I bought a 5-pack of super cute Carter’s baby washcloths for $5.99 and my fav sports bra in a different color for $5.99!

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Bargain Shopping

While I’ve always enjoyed saving money and finding deals, I have developed a new love for it since we’ve started living solely off of the hubster’s graduate assistant salary.  I was thrilled when we received a 30% off coupon for Kohl’s in the mail this week!  There are a few big items, including a breast pump, that were still on our baby registry that I wanted to fulfill.  After shopping around and finding comparable items to the ones that I wanted at Babies R Us, I just placed a Kohl’s order and saved $100 in the process – AND got $40 in Kohl’s cash!

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Pregnancy Pillows

In the past month or so, insomnia has been getting the best of me.  Lying in bed for up to four hours before finally drifting off is just torture.  Now I’m also starting to get aches and pains in my hips and back, which certainly don’t help the sleeping situation.  Ever since twelve weeks or so, I’ve slept with a body pillow…but that’s not even helping anymore!

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Daycare Costs

Yesterday I did some research that many moms-to-be likely do: how much will daycare cost if I go back to work once the baby is born?

Unlike some moms-to-be, I don’t currently have a job that I can go back to after maternity leave.  I lost my job as a by-product of my miserable morning sickness for the first 14 weeks of my pregnancy.  As a graduate assistant, I had to keep six credits of classes in order to keep my job.  Too sick with the dry heaves and intense nausea to sit through class, I had to drop two of my three classes due to attendance policies.  I couldn’t keep my job.  It was a very tough thing to have to withdraw from school and lose my job, but I’m so relieved now in retrospect.  There was no way I could have kept up with it all.  Trying to stay healthy during that period of time was a job in itself.  Looking forward to my third trimester, I can’t imagine having to waddle across campus to my old office.  It was really far away.

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