11 June 2019

Top 3 Reasons Why Your Child Needs a Summer Tutor


Summer has arrived, and it's not too late to make plans for your kids' activities. Even if they already have a camp, sports and vacations planned, there is one more thing you should consider this summer. Summer tutoring is an activity that can benefit any school age child. Here are the top three reasons to schedule some tutoring sessions right away. There online sites to help you get set up with a tutor like tutoo.

Prevent Summer Learning Loss

Education researchers have been studying the problem of summer learning loss as far back as 1906. Research says that taking months off from learning can cause students to lose a great deal of the information and study skills they learned over the school year. A few regular sessions with a tutor over the summer can help a student stay current with their information and retain what they've already learned.

Increased Confidence During the School Year

Studying during the summer can put your child ahead of the game for next year. Getting a head start can drastically improve their learning confidence when they start school again, and confident students learn more, enjoy their studies more, and do better on tests.

Ease School Transitions

If your child is moving from elementary school to middle school or from middle school to high school, summer studies are especially important. Changing schools can be a scary time for kids, and if the actual school work is more comfortable for them, they can focus on other things like making new friends and settling into a new environment.

These are only three of the great reasons to put your kids in a tutoring program. How about you, do your kids go to tutoring during the summer? How does it work out for them? Comment below... 

06 June 2019

5 Things You Should Never Buy at the Grocery Store





In the several decades I've been frugal shopping, I've picked up a few do's and don'ts I live by. Some of them include things I just don't buy at the grocery store. When it comes to frugal living, store hopping is a must, you can get the best deals, by shopping around. Here are a few things you should by at places other than your regular grocery store.

SPICES IN BULK

Spices are one of the most expensive things you can buy per ounce at the grocery. Since the shelf life of most spices is pretty long, you can get the best deal by buying larger quantities in bulk. I buy my spices in larger quantities and store in mason jars and then transfer to my smaller bottles in my spice rack. The best place to get spices in bulk where I live is online, but if you live in a large city, you may be able to get good deals at quality markets that have bulk bins. 

Granulated garlic, for example, can go for $1.55 oz in the grocery store or even .80 cents to $1.00 at The Dollar Tree. On Amazon, you can get a 26 oz brand name container of McCormick granulated garlic for only .30 cents per oz or even cheaper the larger container you buy it in. Buying it online is totally worth the savings. If you don't think you can use it that fast, get together with 2 or three friends and buy several spices together and then split them up in jars when they come in. 


HOUSEWARES AND KITCHEN TOOLS

I can't remember a time when I ever bought housewares or kitchen tools at a grocery store. Most of them have at least one aisle with baking pans, kitchen tools, and other random kitchen objects. Avoid this aisle at all costs. It's always overpriced and usually of lower quality. 

My favorite place to buy housewares is Ross or Big Lots. Depending on where you live, these may not be available though. Search of a discount store that offers discontinued items at a low price. The other option is to check thrift stores. I've gotten outstanding quality, high-end brand appliances, dishes, utensils, kitchen tools, and other items at my local thrift store. If both of these places are duds for you, you'll still get a better deal online than at your grocery. 

BATTERIES

Batteries, unfortunately, tend to be something you run out of in the most inopportune moments. This frequently causes you to run out and buy them at the nearest store at an overinflated price. To save the most on batteries, it's best to be over prepared. It's well worth the cost to get a battery storage box and re-chargeable batteries. Buy enough batteries to have batteries in all the standard items, remote controls and radios, and a set in the batter box. That way, when your batteries run out in the remote control, you can just go to your battery box and switch them out. If you don't want to do re-chargeable or you need batteries right away, try large boxes at discount stores, hardware stores, and online. Never buy batteries in 4-packs, it's the most expensive way to purchase them.

PRE-CUT VEGGIES

I have to admit, I have been guilty of buying pre-cut veggies. They are so convenient, especially when dieting. However, now I know that it takes only a little time to pre-cut up all my veggies for the week on Sunday and put them in sealable containers in the fridge. I pre-cut mushrooms, carrots and other salad veggies and it makes it quick, easy and cheap to throw together a beautiful salad for lunch every day. The cost per oz difference between pre-cut veggies and whole veggies is so vast, it's almost always worth the time to cut them up yourself.

BOTTLED WATER

than soda, so why not pick up a bottle, it's only a dollar, right? Wrong. Those dollars add up, and they add up fast. Water is so much more expensive in serving size bottles, the smaller the container, the more the cost per ounce. If you're drinking bottled water at home, that's even worse! There are so many cheaper options for water. In sink filtration systems, water coolers you refill yourself, even in fridge water pitchers. Decide on a solution for your home and most importantly, get yourself watertight, unbreakable re-useable water bottles you can take everywhere you go, so you save yourself that $1 every time you enter a store. My husband and I actually keep a cooler in the car with water and snacks so we won't spend money on them when we're running errands. 

What about you? What's something you never buy at the grocery store and where do you buy it instead? Comment below and let us know!



10 May 2019

Super Refreshing Summer Drink - The Arnold Palmer



If you're looking for a sweet, refreshing drink to keep in the fridge during the summer, how about a big jug of lemonade iced tea. This non-alcoholic drink became known in the 1960's as the Arnold Palmer, named for a famous golfer at the time. It's an inexpensive drink to keep in the fridge and beats the kids chugging down the soda in the summertime heat.




Ingredients

3 quarts water
9 tea bags
3/4 cups sugar
1 can (12 oz) frozen lemonade

Directions

Bring water to a boil. Remove from the heat and steep tea bags in the water for 5 min. Discard the tea bags and stir in the sugar and lemonade concentrate. Store in the fridge, makes 12 servings. 

09 May 2019

Be A RockStar Remote Worker: How To Have A Successful Career Working At Home

Forgive me while I do a little self-promotion here! I just released my new Kindle Ebook. It can be read on any free Kindle app on the computer, tablet or phone if you don't have a Kindle reader.

Have you always dreamed of working from home? Working right from your house in your jammies is not a pipe dream. Anyone can do it and do it well. You can make just as much money working from home as you can in an office, you just have to find the right job and then do really well at it! This book will help you get on the track to a new career as a remote worker.





It's totally free on promotion from 5-9-2019 to 5-11-2019 and after that it's only $2.99!

06 May 2019

10 Tips on Protecting Yourself from Scams



Unfortunately, as technology advances, so do the scammers. Falling prey to a scam can be costly to both your bank account and your peace of mind. Here are ten tips for avoiding scammers and con artists in the world.

Say NO to Junk Mail


Start by immediately throwing away all junk mail when you get it (or recycling if you're able), then stop the junk mail altogether. You can legitimately stop snail mail, email and telemarketers by putting yourself on the do not contact lists on this site. https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0262-stopping-unsolicited-mail-phone-calls-and-emai

Shred It


This tip is an important one. Thieves get your information from trash all the time, and not just at the curb. Your trash travels, make sure it doesn't have any identifiable information on it by shredding any mail with your birthdates, social security numbers, and account numbers

Power of Attorney


Check with a law office and create a power of attorney that is trustworthy to take care of your finances when you're sick or injured. Without this, you are in danger of losing everything or being scammed while you're out of commission. You want someone you trust to care for your finances whenever you're unable.

Direct Deposit


Put all payments to you including salary on direct deposit. Having checks mailed directly to your home puts you at high risk for mail fraud and mail theft. Identity thieves have easy access to your personal information if they're able to steal a check directly from your mailbox.

Research "discount" Cards


You'll want to research prescription and medical discount cards before you pay for them. Many of them are scams or at best not useful for why you need them.  Only sign up for one if your doctor's office or dentist tells you directly that they accept them and if possible ask for an example from your doctor's office on how the card might save you money.

Get Recommendations


When hiring contractors for home repairs, try to use contractors that have been personally recommended to you. It's much too easy to get scammed or overcharged for home repairs. If you need something fixed, ask around to friends and family and find how who they have successfully used.

The Government Won't Call


Understand that the government, especially the IRS will not call you at home asking for a payment. If you get a call from an IRS agent asking for a payment, this is 100% a scam. Pay your IRS bills online at the IRS.gov website and always make sure that you have back up paperwork to confirm what you owe.

No Travel Clubs


Avoid travel clubs of all types. Unless it's made up of personal friends that you know in person, travel clubs are rarely a good deal and often made up of scammers just trying to get your funds.

Track your Bills


Keep your bills organized and maintain proper records. There are scammers out there who will call pretending to be cable and utility companies and ask for phone payments. Make sure you never pay a bill over the phone if the person called you first. You should always initiate the call or email when making a payment

Stop and Back Up



Stop and think before you purchase something or sign up for anything. This is especially true if you're doing it over the phone or on the internet. If you think about it for a few days, you may realize you don't need it, and if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. 

13 March 2019

Broccoli Tot Casserole


This one is a new one I came up with to combine some flavors that we love, plus I wanted something a little bit crunchy, but also a little bit healthy!

Broccoli Tot Casserole


Ingredients

  • 1 bag of Green Giant veggie broccoli tots
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef or ground turkey
  • 1 can of cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 packet or 1/4 cup of onion soup mix
  • 1/2 cup of sour cream
  • 1 sleeve of Ritz crackers
  • 4 tablespoons of butter


Directions

  1. Butter or grease the bottom of a small 6 x 8 casserole dish. 
  2. Brown the ground beef or turkey and then drain off the grease and set aside. 
  3. In a small bowl, mix together the mushroom soup, onion soup mix, and sour cream. 
  4. Mix the meat into the soup mixture. 
  5. Layer the frozen veggie tots on the bottom of the casserole dish. 
  6. Cover the frozen tots in a layer with the ground meat mixture. 
  7. In a frying pan, add the butter and then crumple the Ritz crackers into the pan. 
  8. Saute on medium-low until the crackers are lightly toasted. 
  9. Spread the Ritz crackers over the top of the casserole. 
  10. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes on 350 degrees. 
  11. Uncover and bake for another 10 minutes. 


I serve with green beans or another vegetable on the side. Stores well in the fridge or freezer for leftovers. 

07 March 2019

How I Save $300 a Year on Books


I've been a reader since I was little. My favorite place to go when I was 5-years-old was the library and we spent entire summers there devouring shelf after shelf of books. Now that I'm an adult, I have less time to read, but I still enjoy my books while I can. In addition to fiction, I have quite the collection of cookbooks, craft books, and reference books. One of my major rules for myself is that I don't spend full price on books. One of the ways I do this is through Paperback Swap. I've had an account there for years and it saves me over $300 a year in book costs. 

What is Paperback Swap

Paperback Swap is a barter website specifically for trading books. Although it mentions paperbacks, you can trade hardbacks too, in fact, this is one of the ways I make the most of the site. It's a pretty easy website to use. You sign up and then create a wish list of items that you would really love to have. You also create a list of books you have that you want to get rid of. When someone comes along that wants your book, you will get a notice to send it to them. You pay to ship on this. They will encourage you to purchase shipping through their site, but I recommend buying shipping directly from USPS.com or the post office to save money. Once you send the book, you'll get a book credit.

When someone comes along that has a book you want, you'll get the chance to spend your book credits to get those books that you want. The sender always pays shipping. 

Secrets to Getting the Most out of Paperback Swap

  1. Here are my tips on getting the most value out of Paperback Swap. 

  • Post as many books as you can to trade. You want to stock up credits for when you want to get books. When I run out of books to trade, I got out and buy books for 10 cents at garage sales and post them to trade. 

  •  Choose the hardcover version of books on your wish list if you have a choice. That way you're getting nice valuable hardcover books, for the price of shipping out a paperback. Go online on Amazon and search for books you might want to have. Then add those books to your Wishlist. The more books on your wishlist, the more often you'll get contacted by members that have books to send to you. 

  •  Think outside of the box. I not only get my novels here but beautiful hardback cookbooks, craft books, reference books and even some college textbooks I need for classes. 


Where to Sign Up?


You can sign up here for Paperback Swap, it's totally free. All you ever have to pay is the price of shipping a book out. Remember, ALWAYS SHIP MEDIA MAIL. It's only around $2.67 to ship a paperback book media mail. 


Top 3 Reasons Why Your Child Needs a Summer Tutor

Summer has arrived, and it's not too late to make plans for your kids' activities. Even if they already have a camp, sports and ...