Two tips for successful budgeting (that no one talks about!)

how to make money as a mystery shopper

Two Tips for Successful Budgeting

The second installment in my budgeting series, two more tips for successful budgeting. We all know that the key to being successful with money is having a budget. Budgeting, in a nutshell, simply tells your money where to go. It’s a far better option than looking at your bank statements at the end of the month, wondering where your money went. That being said, there are two tips for successful budgeting that are rarely talked about.

If you’re brand new to budgeting, make sure to check out my post: Budgeting 101: How to start a budget.

Continue Reading

Why and How I Am Saving for My Daughter’s Education

Saving for kids college is such an important topic that can often be overlooked! Check out how and why I'm saving for my daughter's college to find out what one dad is doing to prepare!

Today I have a special guest post by David from MillenialPersonalFinance.com. Most of you, along with David and myself, are parents of young children. Saving for kids college may not be the most fun subject to talk about, but it’s a very important discussion! Remember that it’s never too early, or too late, to start thinking about saving for kids college. Find out why and how David is saving for his daughters education in this informative post!

Continue Reading

How to get kids to do chores + teaching kids about money

how to get kids to do chores

Teaching kids about money

It’s really important to teach kids about money. The general state of money handling in our culture is just bad. It’s our job to teach our kids how to handle money. I am frequently asked “how to get kids to do chores??” Honestly, my kids do chores because I tell them to. More specifically, my kids do chores because they have grown up doing chores and they don’t think anything of it. They know that chores are a part of life, and they accept that. Has it always been that way? No.

Continue Reading

You can afford an awesome vacation!

how to afford a vacation

How to afford a vacation

When I returned from our trip to Hawaii, I got a lot of comments. Most of them were positive, but a few were more along the lines of “I can’t believe you got to go to Hawaii” or “I wish I had the money to go on vacation.” I don’t travel as frequently as some (I wish!) but I am still asked how we are able to afford to do the traveling that we do. The answer is surprisingly simple. Priorities.

Continue Reading

6 things to buy that save money over time

6 things to buy that actually save money over time

6 things to buy that save money over time

I know what you’re thinking. How do you save money by buying things? It seems crazy, but there are things to buy that save money in the long run. If you’re already on a tight budget, you might consider adding these items slowly over time instead of trying to buy them all up front.

  • Cloth Diapers – I used cloth diapers to some extent with all 3 of my children. I have probably used cloth diapers 75% of the time through my children’s diapering years. I haven’t ever added up exactly how much money I saved, but I’m sure it was a lot! I find that the most cost effective time to cloth diaper is the newborn and earlier months, when you use more diapers than you can count. However, I didn’t start cloth diapering my oldest until he was 2, and I still saved a lot of money because he wasn’t potty trained until he was 3. My favorite cloth diapers are from BumGenius AIO (all in one)and Happy Heiny pocket diapers.

Related Post: Cloth Diapering 101 – Types of Cloth Diapers

Related Post: Related Post: Cloth Diapering 101 – All About Wool

Related Post: Related Post: Cloth Diapering 101 – How to wash cloth diapers

  • Diva Cup – I know that this is a taboo subject, but 99% of my readers are adult women so just hear me out! I was one of those people who thought for years that a reusable menstrual cup was disgusting. Then I decided to try it and it’s honestly a life changer. Not only is it much less disgusting than tampons or pads, but it saves a ton of money. If you only try one thing from this list, I strongly suggest trying it! I was very skeptical too.  If you’re looking to save a little, I have used this off-brand and I find it very comparable to the actual Diva Cup.

 

  • Reusable K-Cup – I love coffee and I love my Keurig, but K-cups are expensive. I had an a reusable cup with my old Keurig and recently purchased this one for my 2.0. If you are used to purchasing K-cups, this one little purchase will save you quite a bit.

It seems counter productive to buy things to save money, but these 6 products actually save money over time. Adding these items to your budget slowly will help save money in the long-term!

  • Reusable Coffee Cup – This seems pretty obvious, but making your own coffee at home will obviously save money. Even if you don’t make it at home, most coffee shops and even gas stations will give you a discount by bringing your own cup. I use a Beuno Cup from Target (clearance!) and a Koffie Straw.

Related Post: Koffie Straw Review

  • Cloth Napkins – I can’t tell you how much money I have saved over time by using cloth napkins, “un-paper” towels and cloth wipes. I have never gone so far as to use cloth toilet paper, but some people do! I have some nice un-paper towels with snaps that a friend made, but I mostly use inexpensive rags/hand towels. If you want nicer cloth napkins, I am thinking about buying this 12 pack.

6 things to buy that save money over time

  • Epilator – I am not going to lie and say that using a epilator doesn’t hurt – it does! However, if you spend a lot of money on razor blades and are looking for ways to save, it’s a great option. I’d say that it hurts less than waxing, and the results last much longer than shaving. I use a Panasonic brand epilator that also comes with a shaver attachment. It is an expensive purchase, but one that I feel will pay for itself over time.




These are 6 things to buy that save money over time, but it’s certainly not an inclusive list. What products do you use that save you money in the long run? I’d love to hear about them in the comments!

 

Continue Reading

8 year old birthday gift ideas

Fun Fact: All six of our kids have birthdays in May-August. This means that “birthday season” is kicking off at our house. We actually aren’t doing big birthday gifts or parties this year, but instead we are taking all the kids on a summer trip and celebrating with activities instead of gifts. Even though that is what we are doing, I wanted to share some birthday ideas for all the birthday parties that you might be attending this summer!

My son is turning 8 on Saturday, and my husbands son will be turning 8 just three weeks after that! Earlier this month I wrote a post about 5 year old birthday gift ideas, so make sure to check that out too! All of the items listed are from Amazon, although you can purchase most of them anywhere. Generally speaking, I have found that Amazon has better prices than Wal-Mart or Target, unless Target is having a good toy sale. If you don’t currently have Amazon Prime, you can try it for free for 30 days. Use this link to get your Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial.

If you’re on the fence about Amazon Prime, make sure to  check out my post about how to get the most out of your Amazon Prime subscription and then sign up for the trial. There are so many things included that most people don’t know about!

Continue Reading

Starfish Themed Beach Wedding Ideas

How to plan a beach wedding | Beach wedding ideas

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of HotRef Party Favors. All opinions are 100% mine.

I love the beach. I’ve been talking about Hawaii a lot lately, but I love a good beach anywhere! My husband and I got married on the beach in Galveston, Texas. I spent a lot of time researching beach weddings ideas. If you’re interested in having a Beach Wedding, you’re in luck! I’ve already found some awesome ideas for you.  I found tons of beach wedding stuff at HotRef Party Favors, but these were my favorites.

Continue Reading

How to save money on a hotel | Saving on hotels & lodging

How to save money on a hotel. Traveling is expensive, but I've been using this one trick to save money on lodging for over 10 years!

I am often asked how to save money on trips and traveling. I don’t pretend to know everything, but I have learned a few things trying to travel on a budget. One of the most expensive parts of traveling can be lodging. Lodging can be expensive! There is always the option to stay in a questionable motel, in a questionable area, or both. In my opinion, that isn’t the best option. I have found how to save money on a hotel, without the murder risk. Not being murdered is always a bonus.

Don’t mind my strange not-so-funny sense of humor, just keep reading!

Continue Reading

How to get the most out of an Amazon Prime subscription

How to use Amazon Prime | How to get the most out of your Amazon Prime subscription

I have been using Amazon Prime for several years now. I have found it to be extremely useful and even though I’m sure I could live without it, I don’t want to! The $99 yearly fee has been well worth it, and we save a lot of money every year.

I’ve had several questions about Amazon Prime, how to use Amazon Prime, and how to get the most out of an Amazon Prime membership. I want to share some tricks that I’ve learned while using Amazon over the years. If you don’t already have an Amazon Prime account, you can try Amazon Prime for free for 30 days.

What you probably already know is that Amazon has great prices, and offers 2 day shipping on Prime eligible items. What you may not know is that there is much, much more to Prime! Keep reading to find out how to use Amazon Prime and get the most out of your $99 subscription.

Continue Reading

Cloth Diapering 101 | How to use wool diaper covers

how to use wool diaper covers, how to use wool cloth diaper covers, how to use wool with cloth diapers, wool diaper covers

How to use wool diaper covers

Have you ever wondered how to use wool diaper covers with cloth diapers? Have you ever wondered why on earth someone would use a wool cover?  If you are new to cloth diapering or if you are considering it, you may be curious about wool. Wool is used as a cover for cloth diapers. Wool covers can be in the form of soakers, shorties, longies, and a few other options. There are many variations of wool covers, but they all do the same thing.

Continue Reading

How to Shop at ALDI

how to shop at ALDI, the best deals at ALDI, saving money at ALDI, is it worth it to shop at ALDI

I am moving to a house that’s about 2 miles from and ALDI and I am so excited! Who gets excited about grocery stores? This girl. <-  Are you trying to save money on groceries? With the cost of groceries skyrocketing, who isn’t?! If you haven’t tried shopping at ALDI yet, you should! Click here to see if there is an ALDI in your area. I’ve been shopping at Aldi for most of my life, I remember going with my mom when I was little. I love ALDI for many reasons, and I want to share my tips for how to shop at ALDI with you.

Continue Reading

How to save on a moving truck

how to save on a moving truck, how to save money moving, how to save on a move, how to save money on a rental truck, how to save moving, moving tips

How to save on a moving truck

Renting a truck to haul your stuff is one of the biggest expenses that comes along with moving. Fortunately, there are a few tips on how to save on a moving truck that you can use if you’re planning a move.

First of all, I have to say that I have had a bad experience with U-Haul a few years ago. I actually wrote several reviews as well as a blog post. U-Haul not have the truck that I reserved weeks in advance, and they were also horribly rude. The customer service was awful, and I didn’t want to rent a U-Haul truck again. I promise this isn’t a post to complain about that experience, but I do want to warn my readers about it because I don’t want anyone to have to deal with what I dealt with. When you think of moving trucks, you probably think of U-Haul first, so I started looking into other options.

Continue Reading

How to start a WordPress blog

how to start a wordpress blog

So you’re here because you want to start a blog. Awesome! Running a blog can be a lot of work, but it’s also a lot of fun. I truly enjoy having a platform to share information with my readers. I have been blogging since 2011, and I really enjoy it. The best part about having a blog is that it can also be profitable. Making money blogging takes a lot of effort, and it doesn’t happen overnight. However, it is a very real way to work from home and have extra income, or even make more money than working outside of the home. The most important thing to remember if you want to have a profitable blog is to be self hosted through WordPress.org. Don’t worry, I will walk you through the steps one-by-one!

Continue Reading

Cloth Diapering 101 | How to wash Cloth Diapers

Cloth Diapering 101: How to wash cloth diapers. A beginners series all about cloth diapers, don't forget to check out part 1!

Welcome to the Cloth Diapering 101 Series! Part two is all about how to wash cloth diapers. Make sure to check out Part 1 – Different Types of Cloth Diapers.

I believe that the number one reason why parents don’t stick with cloth diapering is laundry issues. Diaper laundry can be extremely simple once you get in to a routine, but finding a routine that works for you can be challenging. What works for one family may not work for another. Washing cloth diapers can seem very complicated for the beginner. I created this post to explain diaper laundry as simply as possible. Here are some common questions that a new cloth diapering parent might have about laundry.

Continue Reading