Tuesday, November 30, 2010

IHOP GiftCard

To all my readers who eat breakfast for dinner, I just got word that CityDeals is getting IHOP gift cards in.  These are real plastic gift cards valid at any location nationwide AND they're 20% off face value right now on CityDeals! Remember that IHOP makes more than just breakfast food too.  All the IHOP I could ever want, all day every day, for 20% off? It's like a dream come true! 

I hope you enjoy!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Freebie Friday

Hope everyone had a very Happy Thanksgiving.  If you are back from your black friday shopping go ahead... sit back and relax.... and sign up for some freebies!

~ FREE SAMPLE  of Happy Me Skincare Acne Healing or Anti-Aging Cream

~ FREE Kellogg's All Bran Promise Pack

~ FREE  Sample of Felix Sensations Cat Food

~ FREE  Gift Labels and Coloring Pages for Download from Land-O-Lakes

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thanksgiving Day Table: Boring to Beautful

I want to thank our guest author for a wonderful Thanksgiving Day money saving tips post.  Please visit our guest author at Mojave Max and 'like' on Facebook!! Enjoy and I can't wait to see what your table looks like...feel free to share your pictures.

Your Thanksgiving Table: From Boring To Beautiful On The Cheap

It happens every year- the magazines come out filled with dozens of photographs of perfectly decorated holiday tables. If you are hosting your own dinner (or a pot luck to save some money!), you don't have to have table envy. Here are some creative ways to make your Thanksgiving presentation picture perfect.  The magazine shows beautiful place card holders on the table for each guest. These start at almost $4.00 each!

Try mini pumpkins instead! Simply buy a bag of them- I have seen them for as low as $4.00 per bag of 10! Cut out business card-sized pieces of thicker card stock and write each guest's name on the card. You can even decorate the card with stamps or glitter! Cut a thin slit across the top of each pumpkin and place the card in the pumpkin- instant place card holders!  Use a fork. A decorated piece of paper with the guest's name on it can be slotted into a fork and placed on the center of the plate.  Try leaves! The week before Thanksgiving, collect and press fallen leaves in books. On Thanksgiving, simply (and carefully!) write each guest's name with a gold paint pen and place the leaf in the center of the plate- you can also attach a ribbon to the stem and tie it around a wine glass. You can also cut out leaf shapes from paper if you don't want to use real leaves.

The website shows beautiful flower arrangements. Unless you have a floral market license, chances are these arrangements start at $50.00 and head waaaaay up from there.

Simple clear vases filled with cranberries look elegant and are super easy to make! Bags of fresh cranberries can be marked down drastically low along with the typical Thanksgiving foods in your grocery store. For a dramatic look, you can find tall, thin branches and arrange them in long thin vases (the local dollar store usually has a ton of these!) and fill the vases with cranberries. You can also use shorter clear containers and put a votive candle in the center of the cranberries for elegant lighting on your holiday table.
Carved pumpkins aren't just for Halloween. Cut the hole from the bottom of the pumpkin and make a small vent hole near the stem. Once you have the inside cleaned, punch or carve patterns into the pumpkin all the way around- think squares, stars, or circles that form lines around the entire pumpkin so it looks similar to an ornament. When lit from the inside with a candle, these create beautifully lit centerpieces!

Pile on the pumpkins (and gourds!) Buy a variety of gourds and arrange them in a pile down the entire center of your table. Through the center of the pile, choose three or five of the more stable ones and cut taper-shaped holes into the tops of them- instant candle holder!

Gold or copper spray paint (look for floral spray paint) lightly dusted over any pumpkin (and around the holes if you have carved it), squash, or gourd brings elegance to the table- use it sparingly though (dust the stem and around the top with gold), or it can start to look kind of cheesy!

The tv show shows fine china and silver on a beautiful tablecloth. Getting matching place settings for every guest can run you thousands of dollars.

Coordinate. The key is matching pieces, not which company signed the back of the plate. The dollar store sells simple white plates for a dollar each- you can bring in color with bright red or orange napkins (also from the dollar store!).
Be shabby chic. Hit up the thrift store and find two or three sets of matching dishware- simply keep the same shape and try and stay in the same pattern family for continuity. When every third person has the same patten, your table will look eclectic and unique!
If you're in the city, try to find your restaurant supply store- chances are they have a used section with hundreds of the same plate, fork, or napkin for very cheap!
Tablecloths do not have to be monogrammed, embroidered statements. Again, try your thrift store! You can also forgo the tablecloth and make a table runner- find a fabric you like long enough to cover the length of the table. Cut the width of it down to a little over 2 feet long, and men the edges by either sewing them or ironing them with new-sew tape. You can use fabric dye on a plain cloth and create patterns or add leave shapes, or you can use bleach spray with stencils for a different effect!

With a little searching around and ingenuity, you can feel confident with a beautiful holiday table. Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Blog Hop Friday - Link Up


Thursday Freebies

There are some great freebies available this week.  Check them out here!

~ Sore no More natural pain relieving gel sample.

~ Free Holiday music downloads: Sugo Music Free Holiday Sampler, Timeless Christmas (Amazon MP3 Exclusive Sampler), Carol of the Bells, O Holy Night, Oh Christmas Tree, Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy, Chacra World Music Holiday Sampler, (I) Deck The Halls

~ Free votive from Yankee Candle on Nov. 20 between 10-12 in stores. (This info can be found on their facebook page.  There is also a buy 2 get 2 free coupon available).

~ Free Sample of Burt's Bees Lotion on Facebook. (Like Burt's Bees on facebook & click the tab -  What Your Skin is Saying. Then Fill in the box that says -Tell Us What Your Skin Has To Say.  Then click publish and a box will come up to fill in your info.

~ Free Jiffy recipe booklet.

FREE ADT Child Safety Kit.

~ Free o.b.  Trial Pack.

Checking the mail has been so much fun the past few weeks!  Coming up next:  Your Thanksgiving Table: Boring to Beautiful on the Cheap... keep a look out!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Coupon Alert

Thanks to MyBlogSpark and MyGetTogether for providing a great coupon that can be used on any Hamburger Helper, Tuna Helper OR Chicken Helper Home Cooked Skillet Meal.  Our family loves these "helper" meals, especially when we are strapped for time but still want a nice, warm, home cooked meal.  I'm happy to be able to share this coupon with all my family and friends.  Enjoy the coupon, a nice meal, and some wonderful family time.

Click Here For Coupon

Play to Win

There are many companies right now that are offering some great prizes through instant win games (IWG).  Here is a list of instant win games you can play to win great prizes and learn more about your favorite companies.

Halls Pop a Drop and Don't Stop

HSN Great Gift Giveaway

Walgreens Stay Jolly

BestFoods The Real Food Project

Heinz Ultimate Party

Pillsbury Million Morning Smiles

Quicken Loans Thanks a Million

General Mills Great Gift Giveaway

Sunoco Fuel To Win

So far I've won a free bags of Halls cough drops, a Starbucks gift card, and a few coupons. The gift card just came yesterday!

What have you won recently?

*Enter at your own discretion.  In order to play the instant win games, you will have to fill out a form with personal information.  Please read all privacy policies carefully. I have played all the games listed above.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Tips to Save Money on your Heating Bill

Is your heating bill higher than you'd like? Ours was to... until we started making a few changes around the house.  Here is a great list to get you started!

~ Insulate your doors.  You can very easily (and cheaply) buy the two sided insulation foam to place around your doors.  If you are losing heat from under your door, simply use a towel to cover the opening.
Click link for foam insulation: Duck 1278973 Foam Weatherstrip Tape, 5/16-Inch x 3/8-Inch x 10-Foot, 2-Rolls

~ Insulate your windows - you can buy a clear plastic sheet to attach to the inside or outsides of your windows to keep the heat in and the cold out.
Click Link for Window Insulation: Window Insulation Shrink Plastic Film Fit Inside Storm Windows 4 Pack Kit, Weathersealing

~ Turn the heat down - even a few degrees make a huge difference.  Find a temperature that is comfortable for the whole family and keep it there.  Try to stay in between 66-70 degrees if you can.  Also if you don't have one already, install a digital thermostat so you can program the heat to be turned down during the hours you are away from home.
Click Link for Digital Thermostats: Honeywell RTH221B Basic Programmable Thermostat

~ Use the oven -  When you are cooking or baking opt to use the oven over other methods.

~ Open the Blinds - Let the sunshine in and heat your home naturally.

~ Light the fireplace or burn some candles - The heat from a candle may not seem like much, but seeing the flame may trick your brain into thinking its warmer :)

~ Use space heaters - if you keep your thermostat down, think about using a space heater in the room you frequent.

~ If you have ceiling fans - Now is the time to reverse the spin to help push the warm air down.

Otherwise I suggest to wear warm clothes, keep socks on your feet, grab blanket, snuggle, cuddle, and grab some hot chocolate!  What have you tried?

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veterans Day Freebies

Thank you to all of our veterans and to all those on active military duty: these freebies are for you!

Subway: Some Subway restaurants are giving free six-inch subs to veterans or active-duty members on Veterans Day (at participating restaurants, call ahead).

Applebees: All veterans and active duty military eat free from a limited menu at Applebee's on Nov. 11. Simply show proof of service or arrive wearing a uniform.
Outback Steakhouse: Veterans and active-duty military receive a free Bloomin' Onion and non-alcoholic beverage on Veterans Day at participating Outback Steakhouses.

Golden Corral:  Will offer their Military Appreciation Monday dinner. This year  on Nov. 15 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.  All personnel are welcome.

Lowes: 10-percent military discount year-round offer for all active duty, National Guard and Reserve, retirees and disabled service members and their immediate families. All other veterans receive the 10-percent discount on Veteran's Day, Memorial Day and the Fourth of July.  Proof of service required. (Only good on certain purchases, check your local store).

Sam's Club and Hugo Canes:  The warehouse  will give away 36,000 collapsible Hugo canes on Veterans Day to military veterans in need of mobility assistance.  Just show proof of service.

National Parks:  Admission is free on Veterans Day to everyone at all national parks.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

$25 Starbucks Gift Card Giveaway 11/16

Head on over to Health, Beauty, Children, & Family for your chance to win a $25 Starbucks GC.  This could be a great treat for yourself or a great gift to give.  Easy entries!
Click Link Below

Health, Beauty, Children & Family: $25 Starbucks Gift Card Giveaway 11/16

Monday, November 8, 2010

Crafts, Games, and Fun on a Budget

Having fun does not need to break the bank.  Here is a list of budget friendly DIY games and play.  Take some time to bring the whole family together to enjoy some creative thinking, design, and fun.

How to Make Your Own Play dough: (A friend shared this recipe with us a while back... thanks MT)
2 cups warm water
2 cups of flour
1 cup salt
2 TBsp oil (vegetable/olive)
1 TBSP cream of tartar

Mix all ingredients together in a pot over low heat.  When dough starts to clump, remove and let cool.  When cooled pat until smooth.  Add food coloring or scented oils to make this even more fun to play with. Store in an air tight container. If playdough starts to dry out, just add water.

Arm & Hammers PlayClay (we've used this recipe for playdough, ornaments, jewelry and other decorations).  We are going to make ornaments for the grandparents using the playclay, and putting our sons handprint in the clay and then writing a little message.
2 cups Arm & Hammer baking soda
1 cup corn starch
1 1/4 cups cold water

Mix baking soda and corn starch in a pot. Add water and stir over medium heat about 10-15 mins. When it starts to clump remove from heat and let cool under a damp cloth.  When cooled pay smooth.  To make an ornament, jewelry, etc.  make whatever shape you want and then let the clay air dry over night or pre-heat oven to lowest setting and then turn off and "cook" play clay for 10-15 mins.

Make Your Own Memory Game:  This is so fun and easy to make.  Let your kids creative juices flow.
Find empty shoe boxes and cut multiple squares, circles, or whatever shapes you want.  For every two pieces either draw the same picture, print the same picture, write a word, letter, or number.  Once you have finished this enjoy the game.  Turn all your pieces over and see who can find the matches.

Shakers:  These are great for music, dance, or for outdoor events.
Gather some empty, clean, dry water bottles.  Add rice and/or beads.  Seal shut and you have a quick, easy, shaker.  You can also add glitter, paint, and buttons to the inside for a more decorative look. And you can tie ribbons, or bows around the outside.

DIY bean bags:  Create your own game using sock bean bags.
Gather all your lonely socks (you know you have them, the ones missing their matches) and fill them with beans.  Sew the other end shut (if you don't have a sewing machine, pull out the needle and thread, its not as quick but does the job).
Now you can create any game you want.  Since its getting cold out why not put get out some pots and pans and try your own Bozo bucket game. or put a ruler on one side of the room and see who can throw or slide the bean bag the furthest.  So many options!

Board Games: See if you and your family can work together to create your own family board game.  Figure out the rules, game pieces, theme, colors, board design, and timer/dice/spinner.  Then have each family member, or group work on one aspect of the game until the game comes together.  Then enjoy playing your game and see how fun your creation really is.

Hide and Seek in the Dark:  (an old family favorite) This is a fun game at any age.  All you need is some willing family members and literally play hide and seek with the lights out (at night of course).

What am I missing... I would love to see what other families are doing to have fun on a budget!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Relaxing Blog Hop

BWS tips button

Thanks for stopping by and if you decide to follow or subscribe just let me know and I will return the follow!

Check back tomorrow for some great DIY games, crafts, toys and more. 
It'll be lots of fun!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Friday Freebies

-Click here for a Post-it sample from 3M Brand

-Click here for a Free PNC Grow up Great Sesame Street Kids Kits (The free bilingual, multimedia kits include a Magazine for Parents and Caregivers, a Children’s Story with activities, and an original Sesame Street DVD that follows Abby Cadabby and her friends)

-Click here for a Free 2011 Calender from Pillsbury

-Click The Incredible Singing Christmas Tree for a full Free Veggies Tales Christmas MP3 Download

-Click here for Free Sample from Lactaid

-Click Wishing On A Star for the Free Beyonce MP3 download

-Click Free Books for Your Kindle (revised edition) for Free Books for Your Kindle

**Check Back Next Week:  for a great money saver.... DIY fun, games, and crafts!  Teaser:  how to make your own play dough, hand-print ornaments, crayons, board games... etc! It will be lots of fun for the whole family!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Toy Story 3 Review and Deal

We had a family movie night last night and our feature film was Toy Story 3. This movie was so good that I had to come do a mini review of it. The movie was completely entertaining and the whole family loved it.  This movie has it all; action, humor, heart, and suspense.  The imagination and creativity are simply amazing.  Watching this movie will put you right back into your childhood, wishing you could hold your favorite toy one more time and never let go.  I highly recommend this movie for your next family movie night or even for your next date night

Here is a hot Amazon.com deal for Toy Story 3.  It would make a great gift for any age. 

Have you seen Toy Story 3 yet??

Buzz on By Thursday

The Two Savvy Sisters

Thanks for Stopping By

Buzz on By and Find Great Blogs and Make New Friends.  Follow Tips for Saving and I Will Follow Back!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Quick Tip: Free Food

Are you sick of that halloween candy already?  On Sunday November 7 from 11am-9pm at Noodles & Company kids 12 and under can swap some of their halloween candy for a free kids meal (no adult meal purchase required).  This is a win-win. 

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Hey Everyone its Follow Me Back Tuesday: If you're looking for more followers or for some great blogs to read, Click the picture above!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Quick Tip: Finding the Lowest Gas Prices

Save money on gas by checking all the local gas station prices before you leave the house.  The website we use is gasbuddy.com.  All you have to do is type in your city and state, or zip and it will pull up all the nearest gas stations with the best priced gas.  This is a great tool if you are planning out your budget, looking for places to cut back, if you are interested in saving money!

Have fun finding the best deals in your area (available for US and Canada)!