Wednesday, May 25

DIY Water Bottle Wrappers and A Freebie


In our house that means, lots of BBQ's, pool parties, weddings, showers, and lots of company. I love to entertain and am always looking for something to spruce up the party.

It's all the little details that go into a party that really make it a hit! Have you ever done personalized water bottle labels? It always makes plain water bottle look so much more attractive and it ties in nicely your theme. 

Don't they look so cute?

I've seen them used for so many occasions; showers, birthday parties, graduation parties, and in welcome bags as wedding guests check in to the hotel.

 Are you having a party this summer? You're in luck! I just happened to make some summer-y water bottle labels that can be used for any occasion. Just click below to download.  I've left the center blank for you to customize.


After you've customized them, just print, cut, and tape them to the bottle.
For a more water"proofed" label, place mailing tape over the label.

 I'd love to see what you've created using these labels!


Monday, May 23

When Life Throws You Lemons.......

Life is really throwing me some lemons lately. We've all been there.
 So you know what to do when that happens right?

Here are some free party printables that will help us all!
{click on the image to take you to the free printable}

Now doesn't that cheer you up, just a bit?


Wednesday, May 18

Easy Peasy Pie and Memorial Day

I had to share my easiest dessert recipe to date! Well, it's not really mine, you've probably been looking at it your whole life, like I have, and never saw it. Or, maybe you did, but don't steal my thunder, mmmk?
Let me introduce you to.....

Chocolate Pie

Yeah, I know. Photography is something I still have to learn.

1 box chocolate pudding, made as directed on the box
Pour it into a ready made pie crust
Let it sit for 3 hours in the refridgerator to let it set and then,
Top with whipped topping

I know, not fancy, but quick, easy, and I'll definetly be keeping this recipe on hand for those moments when you're invited to a BBQ or dinner and aren't sure what to bring so you call the hostess and politely ask, "What can I bring?" {although you're really thinking, don't ask me to bring anything because I'm busy, I'm just trying to be polite} to which she responds, "Sure, just bring a dessert."

So, family and friends, just know, from now on, you will be getting easy peasy chocolate pudding pie!

So this whole pie thing got me thinking about upcoming BBQ's and what I'm going to bring. Memorial Day BBQ's are the best. This year, I want to be prepared to bring a great dessert to the BBQ, so I'm showing you the best of what I've found.

Picture of Fruit-Tart Flag Recipe

Hmmmm.....decisions, decisions.


Wednesday, May 11

No Pencils!

A friend recently expressed her frustration in getting her son to try and practice writing the alphabet and numbers. He just hated to do anything pencil and paper. I tried to assure her that this is very common in young children (even older children).  Their little bodies have just not developed strong muscles in their hands and it can and does really hurt to work with a pencil. So as you continue building those small motor muscles, they can learn their letters other ways.

So, what should I come across in my files today, but this?

50 Ways to Learn Letters Without Holding a Pencil

So print this off and hang it somewhere you'll remember! 

Monday, May 9

A Confession and Doors

Confession time!

I'm antsy. 

True story. I don't like waiting. I don't stick to routines for very long. I like to change stuff up all the time, and I hate committing to something for too long {except for my dear husband who is the best}. 

The sun has finally shown it's face in these parts of Michigan and I am getting antsy to change something!!! 

Here's a little inspiration.....

purple door

purple-door - ID: 7405413 © Eddie B Sharrett

Yep, I'm getting antsy!

Friday, May 6

Coupons 101: Tips and Tricks

Now that you are a coupon queen, I'm going to be ending this week by answering some questions I've received.

1. Do you stockpile like the people on TLC's Extreme Couponing?

No. It's extreme for a reason. I love finding a good deal and the thrill of using coupons to get a good deal on something, but I'll never have use for 1,100 tubes of toothpaste. That is called hoarding. I will stockpile necessary items that I know we'll need and use in the coming months {not years}. Like I explained a few days ago, sales repeat themselves about every 8-12 weeks so it's not like you'll never see that deal again.

2. How do I get coupons to more of the products I use?

Three ways. One way is to sign up for free samples. Not only are you getting a free sample {which are great to use as travel items} but they usually send you a high value coupon with it. The second way is to like them on Facebook. Many companies are now giving away free items and coupons on their Facebook pages. The last way is to write the company. Tell them about the products you use that you love and can't live without. They'll usually send you a high value coupon or a coupon for a free product as thanks for giving them feedback. 

3.  How should I give my coupons to the cashier? Is there any way that is better?

Yes. First off, you usually want to use your MQ coupons first and then store coupons. Sometimes there's a glitch in the computer system that causes it to beep and then each coupon needs to be entered manually. I also like to hand each coupon to the cashier individually. That way I know that it's being entered in correctly, and I can make sure that each coupon is used for the correct item. I don't recommend you handing a stack of coupons over to the cashier. Too many times they get stuck together, or one gets missed, etc. 
I also suggest that you keep a copy of the store's written coupon policy with you. Many cashiers are unaware of their own stores policies and will refuse to work with you. However, if you are knowledgeable about the company's policy, you should not have any problems. 

4. Where can I find more information about couponing and frugal living?

It was less than one year ago that I left my job and had to figure out a new means for living. Simple Google searches will lead you to thousands of websites with people's tips and tricks for living frugally. I learned a lot about shopping with coupons by following the blogs I listed for you previously. Happy Homemaker Cindy has some great videos about how to coupon and live frugally as well.

I hope this series has helped you! I'd love to hear about how using coupons is helping you. If you have any questions, I'll be happy to answer them for you!

Happy Shopping,

Wednesday, May 4

Coupons 101: Lesson 4

Today, I'm going to show you how you can stop paying high dollar for all of your drug store items. Most of these items I get for free or close to it.

I never used to shop at drug stores before I learned how to use coupons. Their prices were so much higher than Target, so why bother. Not until I learned the drug store secret. 

Each drug store has their own "rewards" system. CVS has Extra Care Bucks, Walgreens has Register Rewards, and Rite Aid has +Up. CVS and Rite Aid have rewards systems that you need to register for and get a card (or key chain card), however Walgreens does not require you to sign up. They are available to all shoppers. Rite Aid also offers Video Values and Single Check Rebates, read more about that here. 

These rewards are money back to you that you can use on your next shopping purchase. So, for instance, I bought some razors at Walgreens the other day. With my receipt I was also handed a register reward for $4 off my next purchase of $4 or higher at Walgreens. 

The other day, I showed you many different sites that I use for matchups. These sites also have matchups for drug stores as well. However, at drug stores, the deals look a little different. 
For example, here is a deal at Walgreens this week taken from Hip 2 Save: 

Buy Bic Hybrid Advanced razor system $5.99
Use the $3/1 coupon found in the 4/10 SS 
Pay $2.99
Get back a $2 RR
Final cost $0.99!

Translated, this mean you can buy the Bic Hybrid Advanced razor system for $5.99. You'll use the $3 off 1 coupon found in the Smart Source {SS} insert in the paper from 4/10. You'll pay $2.99 at the register for this, however, you'll get back $2 in register rewards {RR} to use on a future purchase. 

Now, let's say that you also need to pick up this deal at Walgreens as well:

Pantene shampoo, conditioner 12.6 oz, styling products 5.1-11.5 oz 2/$7 = $1 RR
Use the $3/2 coupon found in the 5/1 PG
Pay $4
Get back a $1 RR
Final cost $1.50 each!

You could seperate your purchase into two transactions. The first one you would buy the razors and get back your $2 in register rewards. The second transaction would be your shampoo. The final cost would be $4, however, you would use your register rewards from the first transaction and only pay $2. You would still have $1 register reward left to use. 

So, here's the recap. If you walked into Walgreens and bought these things just based on the sale price, you would walk out spending $12.99 in items and getting $3 back in register rewards. However, because you used coupons, you bought everything for $6.99 (almost 50% off). However, if you seperated your transactions, you only paid $4.99 out of pocket {OOP}, which is more than 60% off the sale price,  and still had $1 left in register rewards.

This is what coupon crazies call "rolling your buck". Basically it means we're using our register rewards (or +Up or Extra Care Bucks) to earn more rewards. It can be pretty addicting. 

So now, have no more fear over shopping at drug stores! 

Tomorrow, I'm wrapping up the series with a few tips and tricks that I've learned along the way and answering all the questions I've recieved over the last week. Stay tuned!

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