The Easiest and Best Way to Save Money for Christmas All Year Long

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How to Save for Christmas All Year Long - Debt Free Christmas - Afford Holidays - Expensive - Saving Money - Cash Back Rewards Store Credit Cards - Christmas presents and gifts - Spending Money

Even though Christmas comes but once time a year, it's a big expense. That's why I'm excited to share what I think is the best way to save for Christmas in partnership with Sears Mastercard.  I used to really not like Christmas, but it's grown on me a lot since having my own children. And, like my husband, I want to make it magical for our kids. It's the one time of year that I want to give them all-the-things. I want to spoil them rotten because I love them and I don't spoil them hardly at all during the year. But this seasonal desire clashes hard with my ever-present frugal inner self who hates spending money, hates going into ...

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The New Way to Reduce Kids Paper Clutter (And Still Keep Their Memories)

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Alison art - adult coloring book

This post is sponsored by Keepy. All opinions of the Keepy App are my own. I think I broke her heart the day I told her we had to get rid of some of her papers.As I pulled out armful after armful of random papers stashed in the back of the closet, all I saw was the clutter and mess. I asked both of my twin daughters to help me sort through the papers to help me figure out what we should keep and what we should toss. It quickly became apparent that my daughter Lisa thought everything was important and began "secretly" stuffing papers away in a binder and then shoving that into her backpack, stashing them away in her bedroom, ...

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What 30 Days on Jenny Craig Taught Me About Losing Weight

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Jenny Craig Program | Weight Loss | Dieting | Diet | Portioned Food | Meals and Snacks Delivery

Thank you Jenny Craig for sponsoring this post. -- Get serious about losing weight with Jenny Craig! A few weeks ago I decided to lose weight without dieting by changing my life. I jumpstarted this change with the help of Jenny Craig. I am thankful for the month I participated in the Jenny Craig program as it opened my eyes to a couple of things about being healthy. Jenny Craig members can expect to lose an average of 1-2 pounds per week, which is a healthy range of weight loss. However, I should warn this post won’t necessarily be about weight loss, though I did lose weight over the last month-and-a-half. No, instead ...

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The Truth About Paying Kids for Doing Chores

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Chores | Chore Charts | Allowance for Kids | Paying Your Kids | Chore Schedule Calendar | Kids Money Management | Kids Personal Finance | Instilling Value | Money Smart | Money Sense | Family Chores | Instilling Values in Children | How much |

This is a sponsored post. All opinions on should kids get paid to do chores and otherwise are my own. The other day we went to the grocery store and my 6-year-old daughter Alison brought her purse with her. As I'm loading up the vehicle to go home, she pulled out a $1 bill and offered it to me, to help pay for the groceries. While the offer was extremely sweet and kind, I didn't take my daughter's money. As the parent, I don't think it's my child's obligation or responsibility to help me pay for food for her and the rest of our family. That's my and my husband's job to provide. This same daughter has also been known ...

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Why I Am Losing Weight Without Dieting

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Losing Weight | Weight Loss| Jenny Craig | Diets | Dieting |

Thank you Jenny Craig for sponsoring this post. -- Get serious about losing weight with Jenny Craig! As a youth, I never thought to myself, “Man, I hope when I’m 36 years old I’ll struggle with weight issues.” The fact of the matter is that no one wants to stand on the scale and see an obscenely large number staring them back in the face.  But here I am, on the precipice of the rest of my life, and I must ask myself, "Do I want my life to be long and enjoyable, or short and painful?" In my mind, I’ve already made the decision as I want at least one more child, and hear how great grandchildren are and all of that. I want to ...

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Why These 8 Traditional Stocking Stuffers are Enough

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Traditional Christmas Stocking Stuffers - 8 things to include every year in your holidays for him, her and the kids.

This post is sponsored by Orajel. All opinions are mine own.  Every Christmas morning I woke up early, eager to get started unwrapping all the Christmas presents for me underneath our Christmas tree. But, I had to wait until the rest of my family was up and out of bed to do so. Thankfully, I always had a Christmas stocking hanging full of treats and other traditional stocking stuffer items that was free game to rummage through as I waited for my parents and siblings to wake up. I loved our family's Christmas stockings for the simple fact of where it came from: my grandmother. She hand-knit every stocking for myself, my eight ...

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One Crucial Way to Take Christmas to the Next Level

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Christmas Traditions for Family - How this one things will lead to a better Christmas Holiday - Real Christmas Tree

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of the Christmas Tree Promotion Board. My husband and I celebrated eight years of marriage at the end of November. Over those eight years we created memories, children, and traditions. It's been super fun having our own simple everyday family traditions, as well as holiday traditions. Christmas is my husband's favorite holiday and he wants to go big every year. Because of his attitude toward Christmas and the joy it brings myself and my growing family, it has quickly become my favorite holiday as well, even more than Thanksgiving, my old favorite holiday. But, for eight years my ...

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How to Limit Christmas Gifts to 3 or 4 Without Being a Scrooge

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three-gift-christmas-gold-frankincense-myrrh

This post is sponsored by Carter's; however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.  I can't imagine Christmas morning without gifts.  It's like having a birthday without a cake or people singing Happy Birthday to you at least once. It just would not be the same. At all. No matter how tight money was when I was a kid, my parents, eight siblings and I all managed to have at least a few gifts under the Christmas tree every year.  Even though my greed at Christmastime sometimes prevented me from appreciating the gifts I received, I still received gifts! Of course Christmas isn't really about gifts, and birthdays will ...

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Top 6 Reasons You Should Still Mail Christmas Cards

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mail-christmas-cards-via-snail-mail

This post is brought to you in partnerships with Orajel. All opinions are my own. Every year I hear the same excuses as to why people don't mail Christmas cards to their family and friends via USPS snail mail. People often say things like: "Christmas cards are so much work!" "It's just another thing to do during the busy Christmas season." "Honestly, sometimes I just forget to do them until after Christmas is over, and then don't send them because I'm embarrassed to send them so late." "People just throw out the cards anyway, so why bother?" "They are too expensive!  There's the cost of a photographer and/or a ...

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5 Simple Ways New Moms Can Improve Their Health

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Simple, easy things moms can do to improve their health. It's all about the little things!

This post was developed in partnership with Tom’s of Maine. All opinions are my own. This past Monday I made a big mistake. I thought I was being awesome, heading to the gym to do my second round of a Power Pump class. Maybe the fact that my instructor was MIA should have tipped me off that something wasn't quite right about this day. But, when a different instructor invited the four women who had shown up for the Power Pump class to join her Silver Sneakers class (with modifications for us, since, well, we aren't 60+ year olds) in 15 minutes, we all agreed, myself included. So, we pulled out our weights and mats and did ...

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How to Prepare for Cold and Flu Season & Prevent Viruses from Ravaging Your Family

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cold-and-flu-season-survival-kit-prevent-viruses

Sure, Fall comes with its beautiful colors, pumpkin-flavored everything, fun holidays, and cooler sweater weather, but it also welcomes us to the less-than desirable cold and flu season. Even as a homeschool family, we are not immune to the spread of germs, viruses, and diseases this time of year. And it is the pits. We are currently on week two of croup in our home with the most recent victim my 14 month old daughter, who I was praying would be spared as it went from one person in our family to the next. My son had croup as a baby, at like 16 months of age, and had to be hospitalized overnight. It was not fun and I did not ...

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8 Ways to Up Your Odds of Having a Successful VBAC Delivery

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Great advice for all pregnant moms who want to have a successful VBAC birth!

Like many women, I never wanted to have a C-Section, but ended up with one anyway with my first pregnancy. I had breech twins so my babies were born through my abdomen instead of my vagina. When I became pregnant again, I knew I wanted to avoid another C-section; I wanted to have a successful VBAC or Vaginal Birth After Cesarean. Due to this strong desire I went about educating myself about C-section vs VBAC, labor, childbirth, VBAC risks, VBAC success stories, hospital's VBAC policies, and other VBAC facts. When it comes to pregnancy and childbirth, education is fundamental. I am now one of the fortunate VBAC success ...

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