Month: December 2014

DIY Christmas… Making Presents on a Budget

Hello fellow frugal friends,

You’ve got 20 days left until Christmas is here!  Are you done shopping?  Have you even started?  So many procrastinators in the universe, which isn’t the worst thing in the world this year.  I’ve found some easy and awesome DIY Christmas gifts that you can make for family and friends.

1.  COOKIE IN A JAR:  This would be a great gift for your kids to make to give to family members.  These are super easy and cute!  Here is a link to see what it would look like:

http://madeinpretoria.wordpress.com/2011/12/20/12-days-of-christmas-diy-chocolate-chip-cookie-mix/

2.  CARAMELS:  There are so many different ways to make caramel.  These are a little more time consuming (at least the ones I have made in the past), but people seem to love these as a gift!  Try this recipe… it looks yummy!

http://tastesbetterfromscratch.com/2014/04/homemade-caramels.html

3.  CANDLES:  I am going to try to make some candles this year if I can muster up the time.

http://www.livingwellspendingless.com/2013/11/18/diy-cinnamon-candle-gift-handmade-holidays/

4.  DESIGN A WINE GLASS:  Head to the Dollar Tree and pick up some $1 wine glasses… then go to your local craft store and buy spray paint that works with glass… Also… get some rubber bands and then check out what you can do with these things!  (Note:  I tried this once, but I didn’t get the kind that worked with glass and it came off…so make sure you get the right kind).

5.  MINT SUGAR SCRUB:  I have always wanted to make some sugar scrub to give out but have yet to do it… this is top on my list & it has a five minute prep time.  This would allow you to make NUMEROUS gifts in one and with little time and effort.

http://lovegrowswild.com/2013/11/diy-mint-sugar-scrub-holiday-gift-ideas/

6.  HOMEMADE LIQUEURS:  This is what I am going to try to do for my over 21 friends/the ones who drink.  Homemade Bailey’s…uhhh, yes please.  This one may be a little more spendy, but your adult friends will LOVE it I am sure!

http://afarmgirlinthemaking.com/2014/10/homemade-baileys-just-time-christmas-gifts/

7.  HOMEMADE BODY BUTTER:  What lady in your life wouldn’t love homemade body butter?    Mom’s, young ladies, grandma’s, and aunts… all will want this!  Check out this site for a recipe:

https://hensandhoney.wordpress.com/2014/01/12/how-to-make-luxurious-body-butter-with-just-three-ingredients/

8.  MONOGRAM PLATES:  These would be great for kids to help with and there are so many different ways you can make a cool plate!  You can go to the Dollar Tree to pick the plates up and go to town with your creative side!

http://lemontreecreations.blogspot.com/2010/08/monogram-table-setting-and-other-ideas.html

There are so many wonderful, endless options on making your own gifts for the holidays.  These are just a few I thought were super awesome, easy, affordable, and require little effort!  Basically, you can be lazy AND give good Christmas gifts!  If you have any other neat ideas, let me know!  I would love to add it to the list, but if it’s spendy… you know the answer ; )

Have a good night… and if you do one of these, I want pictures 🙂

E.

To Shampoo or Not to Shampoo??

Hello friends,

Depending on how long you have been following my blog, you may have read that I don’t use shampoo and conditioner.  I quit in February.  Instead I use a mixture of baking soda/water as my “shampoo” and apple cider vinegar as my “conditioner”.  Over the last ten months, my hair has felt fantastic.  There have been so many positives to my discontinued use of regular shampoo/conditioner.  But basically I have come to this dilemma…. in the months that I have been doing this I have managed to get my husband to quit gagging after I get out of the shower (from the smell of ACV) but he still wishes I would use regular shampoo and conditioner.  Apparently, that is all he wants for Christmas!  I have yet to decide if I will continue my path or give in to my husbands request, but I thought I would put out there a pros/cons list, in case you have felt like trying this method out.

PROS: (to using baking soda/ACV)

-Cost is significantly cheaper:  In ten months I have used less than one gallon of ACV (less than $5) and about $3 in baking soda.  10 months of shampoo is probably $30 give or take.

-My hair feels great!

-ACV helps with dandruff… so during the dry months, I don’t need to feel like I shouldn’t wear black.

-I know all the ingredients in my “shampoo and conditioner”.

-It is quicker to get in and out of my hair than the regular stuff!

CONS:

-It does take a little extra effort… really though, just like a minute extra.  I have to decide today is hair washing day, and then put the ACV and the baking soda in two cups.

-The smell… I personally like the smell of ACV, but it took a bit to adjust to my hair smelling like it until it was dry.  My husband on the other hand…. still not a fan.

-It strips the color out of my hair faster…  which doesn’t mean I will see my hair lady any sooner (because I am lazy), it just means my hair won’t look as good for as long… =(

Decisions, decisions… Life is tough.  Even though I only started using ACV/baking soda ten months ago, before that I hadn’t bought shampoo & conditioner in over a year from having a stock up… so do I start back up?  Do I give into my husbands request?  I mean, it really is a simple request.  I thought I would share this dilemma with you all share my goal of spending less.  But the main question of this post is if it is worth continuing when your S.O. doesn’t care for one of your frugal ways?!?

When I make a decision, I will let you know.

E.

Cyber Monday Today, Here is What is Going On

Hello fellow frugal friends,

Christmas is right around the corner and if you are at all like me, you stayed in on Black Friday!  With technology these days, why leave my house to get trampled when I can wait until the following Monday after Black Friday and score deals online, that get delivered in a package to my house?  Here are some deals you will find online today!

Petco:  Hey, pets need presents too!   30% off today (no code needed).  For every $25 you spend you get a $5 eGift card- giving you extra savings for your next shopping trip.

Walgreens:  25% off sitewide on regular priced items.  Use promo code GIFT25.  Free shipping after $25 spent.  It looks like you could potentially get a new FitBit for $75 today (regularly $99)… start the new year out with a healthy new habit.

Macys:  15% off using code CYBER.  Some items qualify for an extra 10% off in savings.  Clearance is also an extra 20-40% off today.

Target:  BOGO 60% off on clothing, shoes and accessories; no promo code needed.  10% off house items using code CYBER10.

Discount Magazines:  3 magazines for $12.  5 magazines for $18 or 10 magazines for $30.  There is over 100 magazines to choose from.  You could potentially knock off a lot of people from your Christmas list for pretty cheap if you got them all a magazine subscription.

Costco:  Mugs starting at $6.99. Photo books start at $19.99.

Gymboree:  50% off sitewide PLUS free shipping with no min. purchase required.

JCP:  Take 30% off $100 purchase or more.  Use code CYBRMNDY

Sears:  Tons of random deals throughout the site.  Up to 75% off fine jewelry (code GIFTS).  25% off clothing and accessories (code CYBER25).

AE:  40% off plus free shipping with code CYBERDAY.

GAP:  40% off your online purchase at Gap, Banana Republic or Old Navy using promo code CYBER.  Free shipping if you spend more than $50.

Entertainment Books:  I love these things.. You can totally beat the savings if you remember to use them.  Today only- $19 for the 2015 book plus free standard shipping.  Each additional book you purchase today is $15.

Wal-Mart:  Up to 50% off.  Free shipping once you spend $50.

Hope you all can find something you are looking for today at a great price : )  There are plenty more places participating, but if I went through them all, it would be Friday before I finished so here is a jump start.

E.