Thursday, January 31, 2013

Thrifty Thursday: The 10% Rule

The 10% Rule

If you are looking to start saving money or using less of things, start with 10% and make a rule in your life to cut out  or cut back by 10%. Do it with everything from thermostat temperature to detergent to toothpaste. 

Some ideas include:
  • Set your thermostat 10% lower at night
  • Use 10% less toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, etc.
  • Check your water heater temperature, it could work just as well with a 10% lower temperature
  • Eat 10% less food
  • Use 10% dishwasher detergent, laundry soap, fabric softener, etc.
  • Watch 10% less TV
After a while, that 10% less consumption will add up to 10% more money in your pocket.

What could you cut back on my 10%?

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

GVEAWAY and Review: Dapper Snappers

Please watch my video review of Dapper Snappers and see just how they are used and just how I used it on my son when we went up a size in a pair of pants.

Product Description
This GENIUS product consists of a short piece of suspender elastic with snaps that fits in the back 3 belt loops of the child's pants and snaps over the outer 2 loops to cinch the pants thereby keeping them from falling down. In essence, it's a kind of toddler belt.

Dapper Snappers "Fix Droopy Drawers in a Snap!" and are a smart, cost-saving alternative to adjustable waist pants for skinny toddlers and preschoolers.

  • Affordable
  • Versatile in a wide range of colors for girls belts and boys belts
  • Recommended for ages 9 mo-6 yrs and One Size Fits All
  • Perfect for kids who are in between sizes or wearing hand-me-downs!
  • Convenient - no need to remove for diaper changes & doesn't impede potty training
  • Made in the USA
  • Mom-invented


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I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.  I recieved no monetary compensation for this post. SGBG Is not responsible for product fulfillment.

Free "Food Should Taste Good" Chips for Box Tops Members

If you are a Box Tops member (as of 1/29) you can sign up to get this month's free sample which is a bag of Food Should Taste Good chips. Offer goo to the first 10,000.

If you are not a member, sign up today so that you can come back and get next month's free sample.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Wilderness Waterparks

Our recent trip to the Wilderness Resort and Waterparks in WI Dells.

GIVEAWAY and Review: Lovable Labels

If you have kids, you know how important it is to label EVERYTHING in case it goes missing, school supplies, clothing, backpacks, lunch bags, sports equipment, toys, books, etc. The possibilities are endless. You can use them at home, at school, for extracurricular activities, camps , childcare, field trips. And you NEED Lovable Labels.

No more writing on your products with permanent marker. Just peel and stick (yes, it's that easy) the labels on to the products you want labeled. These labels are tough and durable and withstand every day use.

What make Lovable Labels unique and different from some other labels is that all the labels are dishwasher and microwave safe, as well as waterproof and UV Resistant. There are multi-purpose sticker labels, shoe labels, press'n'stick clothing dots (no iron required) and iron-on labels.

The first things I labeled were things that go with my daughter when she is dropped off for extracurricular activities (tennis racket, swim bag & booster seat, if someone else is bringing her home.) She was so excited to see the pretty designs and sizes and started thinking about all the things she wanted to make sure people knew was hers and didn't get mixed up with others.

All my reader can use coupon code Friendship19. This coupon offers $5 off any purchase of $25 or more and is valid until February 28th, 2013.


Bonus! FREE Friendship Sampler (40 Slimline Labels)!

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 I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. No monetary compensation was received.

Disney On Ice "Worlds Of Fantasy" - $10 Tickets!!!

I am SOOOOOO excited! I will be taking my kids to see the Disney on Ice "Worlds of Fantasy" at the Target Center in Minneapolis in less than a month! One of things I read in the above link is that ticket holders can come an hour early for a Disney Princess Pre-Show to see an enchanting display of Disney Princess gowns and mementos.

As soon as my son saw the picture of Cars, he exclaimed "Those are my favorite! That's my show!" had to run and find his Mater toy to play with and as soon as I tell him Toy Story 3 will be featured I am sure he will be running to get his Buzz Lightyear doll. My daughter is equally excited about the Little Mermaid and Tinkerbell and the Disney Fairies.

This is the FIRST TIME that "Worlds of Fantasy" has played in the Twin Cities!!!

$10 TICKETS are available for opening night!

Disney on Ice: 
Worlds of Fantasy

Thursday, February 28 – Sunday, March 3

$15 / $22 / $42 / $65 – Opening Night Tickets Just $10!

Tickets are available at the Target Center Box Office, Ticketmaster Ticket Centers, by calling 800-745-3000 or online at To charge by phone using Ticketmaster TDD/TTY, call 800-359-2525. Certain fees may apply. (Groups of 12+ can save $3 per ticket, call 612.673.1311 to get inquire.)

Come experience a magical Disney fantasy on ice!
Rev up for non-stop fun with four of your favorite Disney stories at Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Fantasy.  Thrill to high-speed stunts as Lightning McQueen, Mater and the crew of Disney•Pixar's Cars race across the ice. Dive into The Little Mermaid's enchanting undersea kingdom and enter the mystical world of Pixie Hollow with Tinker Bell and the Disney Fairies as they reveal the magic that lies within! The toys are back in town with heroic action when Buzz Lightyear, Woody, Jessie, and the Toy Story gang escape from the rambunctious tots of Sunnyside Daycare and race for home, in their most daring adventure ever! From wheels to waves, playtime to pixie dust, your family's favorite Disney moments come to life at Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Fantasy with dazzling skating, special effects and beloved characters certain to create a lifetime of memories.


Try It Tuesday - Handmade Fleece Mittens and Scarf

Working with fleece is fun and easy. 

SCARF: And nothing could be simpler than a fleece scarf that you don't even need to sew. Fleece will not fray, so all you need to do is cut out the length of scarf you want, and cut in some optional fringe on the ends. That's it!

MITTENS: To start out, if you have access to a mitten use that to make your pattern. Se sure to draw outside the mitten by 1/2" on all sides so that you have fabric to create the seams. I chose to extend the wrist length on these mittens because I wanted longer ones to be tucked under my son's sleeve.

After tracing out your pattern, cut out the pattern and pin it to your fabric paying special attention to which sides will be right side out. Sometimes with fleece it looks the same on both sides, but other times it does not.

If you would like the mittens to cinch at the wrist you will need to sew some elastic cording in place on each of the sides of the mittens before sewing them together. You will cut a piece of elastic that is slightly shorter than the width of the wrist on the mitten Start by sewing your end of the elastic in place, then once it is secure pull the elastic so it stretches across the fabric and secure in place with a zigzag stitch.
If you have done that step correctly, it will curl up on the edges as the elastic shrinks back.

Next step is to hem the wrist (optional, as the edge won't fray) on each side.

Final step is to pin the mittens together with right sides together and stitch around the edge with a 1/2" seam. Turn right sides out and you have a new pair of mitten!

This scarf and mitten set was a Christmas present that I made for my son this year. He is very happy to have more Vikings gear.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Make It Monday: Cranberry Bites

I made these for our extended family Christmas celebration. One recipe makes 48 bites, so this recipe is perfect for a big crowd, but I think I would make half a recipe next time I make it for my family. You can prepare the cream cheese filling and cranberry sauce in advance so it is basically assembly and baking at the end.

Cranberry Bites
2 tubes of croissant roll dough
3/4 C homemade cranberry sauce
1 8oz. cream cheese, softened
1/4 C sugar


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Make cranberry sauce in advance (6 oz. fresh cranberries, 1/2 C water, 1/4 C maple syrup, 1 med cinnamon stick - simmer everything in a pot for 20 minutes, remove stick before serving)
  • Make cream cheese filling by beating together cream cheese with sugar
  • Make squares by unrolling croissant dough, pinching together seems and rolling out with a rolling pin, then cutting in to squares with a pizza cutter. Each tube will give you 24 squares.
  • Spray a mini muffin pan and push in each croissant square in each with sides sticking out.
  • Fill each cup with a small spoonful of cranberry sauce and cream cheese mixture. 
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 12-14 minutes.
  • Serve & Enjoy!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Earn 20 Free My Coke Rewards

Log in to My Coke Rewards and watch the video that is pictured below:

Be sure to log in first and click on the video on their website. You get 10 points for watching the video and 10 points for sharing the video (Twitter).

You can read more about My Coke Rewards in my Thrifty Thursday post.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Thrifty Thursday: Make Your Own Individual Servings

If you go through individual servings of items quickly, consider making up your own and save up to 50% per serving on the cost, maybe more if you are able to use a coupon.

I bought all these name brand items on sale for cheaper than store brand items. I will package them in to individual snack cups that hold a 1/2 C servings (FYI - a box of pudding or jello will make 4 filled snack cups.)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

GIVEAWAY and Review: Abel's Field DVD

About Abel's Field
Left motherless by tragedy and abandoned by his father, high school senior Seth McArdle (Samuel Davis) faces enormous pressure as he strives to support his little sisters. At school, he endures the daily bullying of the football team. But fighting back only finds him singled out for punishment and assigned to an after-school work detail under the supervision of the reserved groundskeeper, Abel (SOUL SURFER’S Kevin Sorbo). Much to his surprise, Seth discovers that Abel may be the only one who truly understands his struggles. As dark times lure Seth toward desperate measures, the reluctant Abel may be the one person who can point him back toward the light.
My Thoughts
This is such a good family friendly movie for adults and older children. I think there are parts of the movie that would be hard for younger children to understand, but like any good family friendly movie it does not have vulgar language. It is rated PG, to give you an idea of age level & content. It is a very emotional movie and can provide a good discussion with your family afterwards about the emotions they experienced and the many complex issued presented. It has a good message about how faith and determination are powerful, but so is forgiveness and asking for help. The movie is a Christian based movie, but it is not in your face with it which can make it a good movie for any level of faith that people find themselves experiencing.

For more information about the movie "Abel's Field" online:
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“Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Book Review: Bible Stories that End with a Hug

Bible Stories That End with a Hug is such a wonderful book to read to your children, grandchildren or other children you may care for. It helps children (as well as adults) learn stories from the bible and encouraging positive growth and sharing special moments through hugs. 

Bible Stories That End with a Hug was created by Stephen Elkins and was illustrated by Simon Taylor-Kielty. The book contains 75 bible stories as well scripture passages from a different part of the bible that the story. Each story teaches a lesson that can be applied to a child's daily life. 

The book is listed as for ages 2+ and I would agree with that. Both my 3 year old and 6 year old enjoyed listening to the stories. I would think that it would be a nice storybook for ages 2-6, maybe 7. 
 I saw a picture that looked similar to this one I took and inspired me to take my own picture of a heart in the book. I thought this book would perfectly be illustrated with a heart.

Also, here is a short clip of me reading one of the stories to my children. As you will see it took about a minute and a half to read one story, so this book provides the perfect opportunity to read as many or as little stories as fit in to your allotted time.

Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for the purpose of review. No monetary compensation was received.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Cabela's "Zoo"

My kids like to refer to Cabela's as "Cabela's Zoo" because they like to go there to see all the animals (dead and alive.)

Try It Tuesday: Marshmallow Snowman Craft

This is a full and easy project where most of the supplies come from your pantry (marshmallows and coconut) and a few from your art supplies (construction paper, marker, and glue).

Start out by drawing the snowman on a  piece of paper and letting (or helping if they need it) trace around it with glue. Then instruct them to place one mini marshmallow after another until they have completed the outline of the snowman.

Next have them use more mini marshamallows (we used the pastel colored ones) as buttons and glue them in place.  Then have them glue in to place a nose that you cut out and make dots or draw a mouth and eyes.

Finally, put glue on the bottom for the ground and make glue droplets in the sky and put coconut on top of the glue to look like snow.

GIVEAWAY and Review: Earth Balance Products

I was pleased to have the opportunity to review Earth Balance food products, which you can find in many Natural Foods stores or in the Natural Foods Section at conventional grocery stores. I was sent some free product coupons so that I could choose products from my local grocer and I am going to share one of my coupons with a lucky reader. The prices on these products featured in the photos in this post varied from $2.97-$4.97.

My first choice for a product to sample was the Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread with Olive Oil, which I thought sounded like it was closest to the light butter spread we currently have been using. It was sampled just the spread on a piece of toast and we found it to taste buttery without having a fake butter taste, which I have found that sometimes butter spreads have. The Natural Buttery Spread was available in 3 varieties including Original, With Olive Oil, ans Soy Free.

It was also sampled in the kids' conventional macaroni in cheese. I have found that my kids will notice it tastes different if I use a butter type product that has too fake a flavor or an after taste. This spread had neither of those. I had the macaroni & cheese with them and thought it tasted great.

Other products that were available at my local grocer in the Natural Foods section were 3 different varieties of soy milk, 2 varieties of mayo and coconut spread. I plan to try both the mayo and coconut spread in the near future. I currently use coconut oil in baking and really enjoy it. I am also a big Mayo fan and have not found a natural version that compares to the conventional version that I enjoy. I am hoping that Earth Balance Mindful Mayo will be the natural mayo that I have been looking for.


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I was given free product coupons for the purpose of reviewing Earth Balance products. All thoughts, opinions and pictures belong to SGBG. No monetary compensation was received.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Make It Monday: Slow Cooker White Chili Recipe

Have I ever mentioned that I love cooking in the slow cooker? I do. It is wonderful to be able to prepare something ahead of time and let it cook all day and then dinner is ready before you know it. 

I wanted to share with you another clean eating recipe that I am sure you will enjoy. 

White Chili Recipe

2 15 oz. cans of Great Northern or Navy Beans
1 can of kernel corn
8 oz. cooked and chopped chicken
1 med onion, chopped
1 garlic cloves, minced
3 1/2 C chicken broth
1 1/2 T Tastefully Simple Fiesta Party Mix
optional toppings - sour cream, shredded cheese, tortilla chips, green onions

Directions: Combine all ingredients (except the optional toppings) in a slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4-5 hours. Serve and enjoy!

Friday, January 18, 2013

GIVEAWAY: Handmade Earring and Flower Headband

Need a Valentine's Present?

How about something unique and handmade?

I am giving away 2 handmade items (made by me!)  to one lucky reader. 

I want someone to have a wonderful Valentine's Day, so whether these handmade gifts are for you or to give to someone else is up to you.

Enter the rafflecopter form below.
Winner must follow me in one or more ways (Twitter, FB, Google+, GFC or Pinterest)

These are my own items that I made and am giving away. No one sponsored me or gave me the supplies for these items.  

Influenster Holiday VoxBox 2012

I received the Holiday 2012 VoxBox from Influenster and the following are my social media links as I complete the brand challenges for each of the products.

NYC New York Color Liquid Lipshine - @nycnewyorkcolor / #LiquidLipshine
Influenster Review Page
Kiss Nail Dress - @KissProducts / #KissNailDress
Influenster Review Page

Quaker Real Medley Oatmeal - @Quaker / #RealMedleys

Montagne Jeunesse - @MontagneJeuness / #FaceMasque

EBOOST@EBOOST / #naturalenergy
Influenster Review Page

Goody QuickStyle Brush - @GoodyHair / #QuikStyle

Sole Society - @solesociety / #PerfectPair
Twitter #2
Blog Post

Here are some other social media posts I have made about my Holiday 2012 Vox Box:

YouTube Video of the Opening

Instagram Picture of the Entire Contents

Pinterest Board of Contents