Archive for the ‘Money & Finance’ Category

Apron Full of Giveaways 04.08.14

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014

mint-red apron

Source: Imagine That,  $38.99

 

Welcome to our Apron Full of Giveaways! I hope everyone is having a great week this week! As we do each week, here is our round-up of giveaways for our readers. We hope that this is beneficial to you and your family! Please let us know if you guys win anything- I love to hear the success stories!

Below are the contest links-if you are hosting a contest please link it up below. Sorry, we are not giving away the aprons just showcasing them! Please put your site name and then what type of contest you are hosting. For example, “MomAdvice (Kid’s Movies).”

Good luck to each of you!

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Freebie Friday April 4, 2014

Friday, April 4th, 2014

freebie friday Happy Freebie Friday, everyone! We would like to thank Couponing 101 for assisting us with our freebies each week for loads of deals, savings, and freebies!

This week on MomAdvice we have a delicious and company-worthy recipe for gluten-free meatballs & pasta and you’ll find eight fun sweater crafts you can make with Goodwill items. I also announced a revamp of our Mom Advice Book Club to a quarterly reading schedule that will give you more time to read the great book picks like our summer pick: Love with a Chance of Drowning. And make sure to check out our new Friday feature each week – It’s the 3 Little Things - this is where I get to share 3 things that I’m loving right now, and I hope that you’ll join in, too, by sharing your favorite things!

Of course you’ll also find our weekly notebook, filled with inspiring DIY food, decorating and craft ideas, and you’ll want to check out all the contests you can enter on our weekly round-up of great giveaways!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Food & Drink

Loose Leaf Tea Sample

Health & Beauty

Biolage Matrix Shampoo or Conditioner Sample

Poise Pad Sample Pack

Entertainment

Outdoor Life Magazine Subscription

Ladies Home Journal Magazine Subscription

Better Homes & Gardens Magazine Subscription

Knitting for Beginners eBook

LEGO Movie Pre-K Printable Pack

Frozen Pre-K Printable Pack

Snow Princess Printable Pack

This Week’s Freebie Events: April 4 - 11

5th -  Lakeshore Learning: Create a Spring Bird’s Nest, 11 am - 3 pm

5th - Barnes & Noble: Storytime reading of The Pigeon Needs a Bath, 11 am

5th - Home Depot: Build a Bird Bath/Birdfeeder, 9 am – 12 pm

5th & 6th - National Museums: Bank of American Cardholders Get Free Admission

 

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Apron Full of Giveaways 04.01.14

Tuesday, April 1st, 2014

blue-red apron

Source: Jassy Kitchen,  $33.00

 

Welcome to our Apron Full of Giveaways! I have to apologize if you’ve had problems linking up since we updated our site, and want to let you know that we are trying out a new link-up below that we’ve tested and is working – yeah! If you are having problems, there is a “trouble with the link,” below the button that you can also use to access & share your links.  So, link away  - and we continue to hope that this is beneficial to you and your family! We really do want to know if you guys win anything- success stories are awesome!

Below are the contest links-if you are hosting a contest please link it up below. Sorry, we are not giving away the aprons just showcasing them! Please put your site name and then what type of contest you are hosting. For example, “MomAdvice (Kid’s Movies).”

Good luck to each of you!

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Freebie Friday March 28, 2014

Friday, March 28th, 2014

freebie friday Happy Freebie Friday, everyone! We would like to thank Couponing 101 for assisting us with our freebies each week for loads of deals, savings, and freebies!

This week on MomAdvice we have an amazing and unique recipe from our food contributor, Diana, for Hazelnut Soup. You’ll also find my newest gluten-free recipe for waffles (so yummy!) along with a giveaway from Mrs. Butterworths that you will definitely want to enter! I’m also excited to share with you how to dye plastic Easter eggs – perfect for making them last and for those with egg allergies. I’m honored to share, too, the March book club discussion for A White Wind Blew – if you’re reading this book with us, you have to check out the author’s take on a number of questions!

And make sure to check out our new Friday feature each week – It’s the 3 Little Things. This is where I get to share 3 things that I’m loving right now, and I hope that you’ll join in, too, by sharing your favorite things!

We also have our weekly notebook which is filled with inspiring DIY food, decorating and craft ideas, and you’ll want to check out all the contests you can enter on our weekly round-up of great giveaways!

Sure hope you have a great weekend, everyone!

Food & Drink

Quest Protein Bar
Seattle’s Best Coffee Sample
Lipton Tea Sample

Health & Beauty

Zarbee’s Seasonal Relief Sample
Garnier Clean+ Nourishing Cleansing Oil Sample

Home

Finish Dishwashing Detergent Sample

Entertainment

Quilting for Beginners eBook
Delicious, Quick & Simple – Paleo Lunch Recipes eBook
Photo Book for Anyone Stationed Abroad
Family Circle Magazine Subscription

This Week’s Freebie Events: March 28 - April 4

29th -  Lakeshore Learning: Create a Funny Fish Puppet, 11 am - 3 pm

 

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Mrs. Butterworth Sweet-Stakes Giveaway & Gluten-Free Overnight Waffles

Thursday, March 27th, 2014

Mrs. Butterworth Sweet-Stakes Giveaway

*This post is sponsored by Mrs. Butterworth

I am excited to share with you that I have partnered with Mrs. Butterworth today for a fun family prize pack giveaway and to share about their sweet-stakes they are hosting for their fans through April 30th!  Lucky for us, I am not only giving away a prize pack for our MomAdvice readers, but I am showing you a fun new recipe you can try to put that wonderful prize pack to work in your kitchen.

Mrs. Butterworth Sweet-Stakes Giveaway

This month, Mrs. Butterworth’s has teamed up with Busch Gardens to generate some more fun around the dinner table. They have launched a Family Fun Sweet-stakes where you can enter to win a trip to one of the Busch Garden parks.  You can read all about their fun contest here! This contest inspired me so much that I knew I had to head to my kitchen and create something in honor of it.

I have always been a syrup-loving girl. For years, we have made it a family tradition to indulge in, what we lovingly call, “Jazzy Sunday.” Jazzy Sunday amounts to throwing on a few jazz records and making waffles and pancakes drenched in syrup for a delicious Sunday brunch.

With eating gluten-free, I have found that it takes a lot of practice to replicate my favorite pancake and waffle recipes.  I began to think about the fluffiest waffles I had ever made and it was an overnight waffle recipe that my best friend shared with me years ago. I started wondering if I could replicate this with a gluten-free waffle recipe. Low and behold, after a few experiments, I found it is possible to make fluffy-as-air waffles with the overnight technique of warm milk, frothy yeast, and easy all-purpose gluten-free flour.

The batter is still dense, but it yields a fluffy waffle that no one will ever know is missing the gluten. When topped with fresh berries and Mrs. Butterworth’s Syrup, it is truly a Sunday treat that will make your own, “Jazzy Sunday,” complete.

Mrs. Butterworth Sweet-Stakes Giveaway

In honor of this fun contest, Mrs. Butterworth’s gave me a Family Fun Breakfast Kit that include goodies from Mrs. Butterworth’s and Busch Gardens, as well as jungle animal-themed pancake pans, perfect for the explorer in the family. If you don’t win it here though, they will also be giving away a Family Fun Breakfast kits every two weeks during this contest so there are some great chances you can win there too!

Enter our giveaway of one Family Fun Breakfast Kit using our Rafflecopter widget below and let us know one of your favorite breakfast traditions and LIKE Mrs. Butterworth’s for an additional entry! I will be selecting one winner on April 3rd so be sure to get those entries in! Grab the recipe for Gluten-Free Overnight Waffles below! 

Gluten-Free Overnight Waffles

Mrs. Butterworth Sweet-Stakes Giveaway & Gluten-Free Overnight Waffles
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
A light, fluffy, and super delicious overnight waffle recipe that is also gluten-free!
Ingredients
  • 2¼ cups milk (or dairy substitute)
  • 2.25 teaspoons yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup butter (1 stick)
  • 2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour (I used Better Batter in this)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla, gluten-free
Instructions
  1. Warm milk and butter in a medium saucepan over low heat just until the butter melts.
  2. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Once to a lukewarm temperature, add dry yeast and sugar to the milk and let sit until the yeast is bubbly, about 5 minutes.
  3. Pour the liquid into a large container with a tight fitting lid.
  4. Add the salt and flour, mixing until smooth.
  5. Cover tightly and keep at room temperature overnight (don't refrigerate).
  6. When you are ready to cook the waffles, preheat waffle griddle, stir in the beaten eggs, baking soda and vanilla.
  7. Pour ⅔ cup of the batter on the griddle (or enough to cover the surface) and bake until golden.
  8. Serve with fresh fruit and Mrs. Butterworth’s Syrup.
Recipe Slightly Adapted from About.com.

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Apron Full of Giveaways 03.25.14

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

floral-dot apron

Source: My Silly Monkey and Me,  $24.00

 

Welcome to our Apron Full of Giveaways! I hope everyone is having a great week this week! As we do each week, here is our round-up of giveaways for our readers. We hope that this is beneficial to you and your family! Please let us know if you guys win anything- I love to hear the success stories!

Below are the contest links-if you are hosting a contest please link it up below. Sorry, we are not giving away the aprons just showcasing them! Please put your site name and then what type of contest you are hosting. For example, “MomAdvice (Kid’s Movies).”

Good luck to each of you!

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Freebie Friday March 21, 2014

Friday, March 21st, 2014

freebie friday Happy Freebie Friday, everyone! We would like to thank Couponing 101 for assisting us with our freebies each week for loads of deals, savings, and freebies!

This week on MomAdvice we have a fantastic craft from our DIY contributor, Sarah – easy vintage book page art that can be framed or not. You’ll also find my yummy recipe for gluten free snickerdoodle cake and some great budget-friendly ideas to organize with Goodwill finds! Oh, and did you check out our new Friday feature last week – It’s the 3 Little Things? This is where I get to share 3 things that are rocking my world, and I hope that you’ll find something fun there, too!

Of course you’ll also find our weekly notebook, filled with inspiring DIY food, decorating and craft ideas, and you’ll want to check out all the contests you can enter on our weekly round-up of great giveaways!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Food & Drink

Lipton Tea Sample

Soooo Sweet Sweetener Sample

Health & Beauty

Suave Natural Infusion Hair Care Sample

Ban Total Refresh Cooling Body Cloths Sample

Sundown Naturals Gummie Multivitamins Sample

Entertainment

The Seasons on Henry’s Farm eBook

How To Believe eBook

Done. What Most Religions Don’t Tell You About The Bible eBook

The Ultimate Guide To Keurig Coffee Brewing eBook

Minion Contractions 2nd Grade File Folder Game

Plant Lifecycle Notebook Printables

Easter Printable Pack

Space Themed Calendar Cards

Spring Coloring Printables

This Week’s Freebie Events: March 22 - 28

22nd -  Lakeshore Learning: Create a Rainbow Mirror, 11 am - 3 pm

 

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Apron Full of Giveaways 03.18.14

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

linen apron

Source: Linen Life Ideas,  $42.82

 

Welcome to our Apron Full of Giveaways! I hope everyone is having a great week this week! As we do each week, here is our round-up of giveaways for our readers. We hope that this is beneficial to you and your family! Please let us know if you guys win anything- I love to hear the success stories!

Below are the contest links-if you are hosting a contest please link it up below. Sorry, we are not giving away the aprons just showcasing them! Please put your site name and then what type of contest you are hosting. For example, “MomAdvice (Kid’s Movies).”

Good luck to each of you!

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Freebie Friday March 14, 2014

Friday, March 14th, 2014

freebie friday Happy Freebie Friday, everyone! We would like to thank Couponing 101 for assisting us with our freebies each week for loads of deals, savings, and freebies!

This week on MomAdvice we have two special contributor posts, a heartfelt post on cheering for the same team in your marriage from Mary and tips on how to reduce expenses and spending as part of our budgeting 101 series from Kelly. And I’m getting a little out of my comfort zone here on the blog and sharing 5 ways to style a 3.94 tank top (which turned out to be a lot of fun!), as well as a yummy gluten free Pad Thai recipe with shrimp that is WAY better than take-out!

Our weekly notebook is of course filled with inspiring DIY food, decorating and craft ideas (including some yummy-looking homemade caramels!), and we have lots of contests you can enter on our weekly round-up of great giveaways!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Food & Drink

Mars Chocolate Bars

Yogi Tea Sample

Health & Beauty

Emergen-C Sample

Nivea Lotion Sample

Finish Dishwasher Detergent Sample

CK One Mascara at ULTA on your birthday

Entertainment

Trail to the Tree Easter Devotional by Ann Voskamp

Blessings of the Cross Easter Devotional

St. Patrick’s Day Crafts For Kids eBook

Lowe’s Creative Ideas Magazine Subscription

The Outrageous Life eBook

Who Is The Holy Spirit eBook

Teach Kids to Read Color Words Game

Alphabet Lego Cards Printable

Wall-E Printables

Minecraft Story Starters

St. Patrick’s Day Do-A-Dot Printables

This Week’s Freebie EventsMarch 15 - 21

15th - Barnes & Noble: American Girl Event, times vary by location

15th - Lakeshore Learning: Create a Springtime Kite Craft, 11 am - 3 pm

 

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Reducing Expenses: Put the ‘Personal’ In Your Finances

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

From our money & finance contributor, Kelly Whalen.

How to Reduce Your Expenses

Personal finance is called ‘personal’ for a reason. No matter what advice or best practices exist, money—how we earn, spend, and save it—is intertwined with our values, beliefs, and experience.  By exploring not only the practical side but also the personal side, you will find that you not only can ‘find’ more money, but you’ll be happier because you’ve given your personal finances careful thought.

Knowing your goals and setting up a budget that works are the first steps in putting the personal in your finances. Once you know where your money is going and how much you’re spending you can challenge yourself and your family to reduce or eliminate unnecessary spending by examining what you’re spending through the filter of your goals.

Each expense should be evaluated and considered. Is it essential? Could it be reduced? Should we be ‘investing’ more in this area?

Let’s examine a few common areas where you may be able to find savings that can really add up:

 

Trivial Spending

Buying a cup of $3 coffee at work or spending $10 on lunch out with co-workers every week may not seem like a big deal, but it can add up…and fast! Spending $30/week on those little things can add up to over $1,500/year!

Tips to Manage Trivial Spending:
Choose intentional spending instead. If you know you are going to spend money on little thing it’s best to set a budget of yourself-or an allowance. Once you’ve spent your ‘allowance’ you will have to skip the little expenses for the rest of the month. This will allow you some freedom while staying within your budget.

Stop, Think, Spend Strategy

This simple strategy will keep you from overspending. Stop before you go to the checkout counter. Think about what you’re buying. Go over a few questions in your head to get yourself to be in the moment. No justifying the clearance cost or the unnecessary stuff.

Tips for using Spending Strategy: 
Some sample questions you can either keep in mind or have a list in your wallet (ideally in front of your credit or debit card)

  • Is it a need or want?
  • Can you use something else in place of the item you’re going to purchase?
  • Can you find a better price elsewhere?

Only after you’ve given it the stop and think then and only then is it time to spend.

Lists, Lists, and More Lists

One of the best strategies I have is to always shop with a list. I keep running lists on my phone and in a notebook I carry. This includes everything we need and things I’m looking out for-like a new pair of curtains and the budget I have for those items. If it’s not on the list we don’t purchase it. This keeps me from impulse purchases (my weakness!) and allows me to keep track of things we need that may not be at the forefront of my mind.

Tips for using Lists: 
Use your phone or a dedicated notebook to keep track of your lists. There are plenty of apps that work great for this including Notes (on iPhone), Moleskine’s app, and Taasky.

Unwanted Expenses

We all have things in our budget we’d rather not spend money on-not the things we have to (like home repairs), but expenses that come from a lack of time management or organization. Some examples include; late fees, parking tickets, monthly contracts, or convenience fees. It could be you forgot to return your library books or you needed to pay a bill online that day and had to pay a $3.95/fee. You may have signed up for a ‘free’ trial and forgotten to cancel. While these may seem like small time they can add up if you aren’t careful.

Tips to Avoid Unwanted Expenses:
Avoid unwanted expenses when possible, but also make sure to have some room in your budget (Misc. category) for paying off those unwanted expenses now. To keep from making the same mistake again you can set reminders in your phone or have notes on your planner for due dates and mark down the day you should cancel a ‘free trail’.

Cutting the Cable(s)

One expense most families have is their cable bill. It can add up to more than $150 with internet access, cable channels, premium channels, DVRs, and a home phone. That’s a lot of dough! While internet access may be a requirement at home cutting the cable or dumping the home phone are both ways you can save big bucks.

Tips for Cutting the Cable:
Cutting the cable doesn’t mean never watching TV or movies! You can get a membership to Netflix, use Hulu, HuluPlus subscription, or Amazon’s Prime to stream movies and TV for cheap or free. The best part is you aren’t in a contract so you can cancel or ‘pause’ your membership at any time.

Reducing Interest Payments and Debt

The best way to reduce your expenses is to cut back on interest and debt payments. After all, saving more doesn’t make sense if you’re spending 10% or more on interest payments or more a large percentage of your earnings on debt. Debt isn’t all bad-it may allow you to pursue higher education, purchase your home, or finance a business. Revolving debt, loans, and high interest rates are an expense we should fight to eliminate.

Tips to Reduce Interest: 
While you’re working to pay off debts you can reduce interest rates by:

  • refinance your mortgage-you may be able to refinance for a lower interest rate
  • call your credit card company-call your credit card company and ask for a lower interest rate
  • switch credit card companies-0% intro rates are a great way to eliminate interest (be mindful of fees for transferring balances)
  • consolidate loans-by consolidating loans into one payment you can often reduce interest rates

What are effective ways you’ve reduced expenses?

 

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