Monday, December 19, 2016

Tips and Tricks Link Party #98

Our last link party of the year is now live.  Thanks so much for all the fun of the past year!  I'll be taking a blogging break through January. Have a wonderful Christmas and a very happy New Year!

Tips and Tricks Link Party Monday at 9pm est Every link pinned

Most Clicked:

Host Favorites from Last Week:
Jessica (My Life By Jess) - Pinecone String Light Garland from Frugelegance
Kathleen (Fearlessly Creative Mammas) - Printable Christmas Postcards from Tailored by Tiera
Cassie (Southeast by Midwest) - Peppermint Sugar Scrub from The Crafty Blog Stalker
Krysta (KrystaSteen.com) - Gingersnap Cake from Lou Lou Girls
Gabby (Not Too Shabby Gabby) - Peppermint Hot Chocolate from Your Vibrant Family

Copy & Paste the code (below) to let your readers know to come over & party with us!
Fearlessly Creative Mammas

Monday, December 12, 2016

Tips & Tricks Link Party #97

We had another great party last week!  AND..... We had a winner for that Amazon Gift Card! Congratulations Betty B!!!

Take a look at all the featured posts and then take some time to link up and browse this weeks shares!

Tips and Tricks Link Party Monday at 9pm est Every link pinned

Most Clicked:

Host Favorites from Last Week:
Jessica (My Life By Jess) - Pinecone String Light Garland from Frugelegance
Kathleen (Fearlessly Creative Mammas) - Printable Christmas Postcards from Tailored by Tiera
Cassie (Southeast by Midwest) - Peppermint Sugar Scrub from The Crafty Blog Stalker
Krysta (KrystaSteen.com) - Gingersnap Cake from Lou Lou Girls
Gabby (Not Too Shabby Gabby) - Peppermint Hot Chocolate from Your Vibrant Family

Copy & Paste the code (below) to let your readers know to come over & party with us!
Fearlessly Creative Mammas

My Christmas Shopping Secrets

Are you still working on finishing up your Christmas shopping?  I'm currently sitting on the couch looking over my list of what's been purchased and what can still be gotten that will fit within the budget we've set.  We've been very fortunate this year with our kids' wish list containing very simple and heartfelt desires: to be with family, be with friends, visit our previous home town, package of gum, first loose tooth...... But, it really leaves me in a spot trying to get them gifts they will like and enjoy when they give me nothing to go on!  And while I would love to take everyone back to Missouri for a visit, time and money won't allow it.

This year will be different, too, because we live so much farther away from family.  Our travel accommodations will be different. which means our packing will have to be different.  In other words - I have no space for packing presents!

Since all these other things have been or will be different, my shopping has been different, too.  I want to enjoy this time of year and not fret.  

So, I've done all my shopping online.

Yep.  ALL OF IT.

Here are some of my little secrets for keeping my stress to a minimum and my budget on track this Christmas.


Amazon Prime has been a wonderful tool for our family.  There is a yearly fee, but with the amount we order through the year, it more than makes the fee worth it.  (IF you don't order a lot or won't take advantage of the other services, I don't recommend it.)  

Not only have I gotten free shipping on all our orders, but I've also gotten some great deals!  Even better has been the ability to ship gifts for extended family right to their home (or to the grandparents place) so I don't have to worry about packing them for our trip.

Prime also made things really simple for giving gift ideas for my kids to the grandparents.  Simply create a wish list and then you can share it via email.  Made everything so easy!

If you are wondering if it would be good for you - there's a 30 day free trial.  You can give it a go and see if it would be worth the investment.  Other things we take advantage of through Prime are the videos, books, audiobooks, music, pantry and lightening deal early access. 

Here's a glance at the order schedule if you want to guarantee delivery for Christmas through Amazon Prime.



This is a new thing for me to be doing this holiday.  I confess, I hadn't payed much attention to this site previously.  Thought it would be too complicated with too many hoops to jump through.  I was surprised, though! Really, REALLY simple!  

There's a convenient button to put on your browser window.


And a pop-up notice of possible cash back offers when you land on an eligible site.


I've only used Ebates for 3 purchases, but I already have a balance of cash back!!



I have found a few great deals here.  What I like most about Groupon.com is being able to find some pretty unique items for special people in our lives.  Items and gifts can be found either by looking in a specific location for local stores or by getting coupons to use online.  Last year we gifted an outdoor heater.  This year we've found a beautiful wall decoration.  (And I have a window open on my computer to see if I can find one more gift.)  

Sign up is free and easy, too!


Okay......

Those have been the most helpful sites in my Christmas shopping this year.  I would love to hear what you've been doing this year to help keep your shopping fun and as stress free as possible.  Comment below or comment on our Facebook page.

Remember to look for our Tips & Tricks Link Party starting up at 8 pm tonight!


**Many of my post contain affiliate links.  When you make a purchase through these links, I get a small percentage back at no extra cost to you.  The small monetary amount I get compensates me for the time I spend blogging and sharing with you.  Thank You!!

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Pin The Nose On The Snowman



It's that time of year once again when all the holiday activities, concerts and parties start happening is quick succession.  The kids are excited, but for me it just ends up being more work in my already busy schedule.  {Is that too cynical?}  I always try to get over myself and step up the the proverbial plate for my little ones - whether at home or in helping with school activities.

I ran across some pictures on my computer from either my son or daughter's preschool party game.  Even though this is a classic game, the kids had so much fun with it being made over into a snowman!  Best thing for me was how quick and easy it was to get ready for the party.

Supplies:

Posterboard
Pencil
Markers
Stencils or compass
~ 13.5", 2 1/4", and 1 5/8"



Place plate on poster board leaving enough room on top for a hat and below for body.


Trace around plate with pencil
(using a pencil on this step will keep your plate clean and allow corrections to be easier)


Free hand top hat and body (hard to see, but it's there)


Trace around medicine bottle lid for 'coal lumps' for the mouth and eyes. (1 5/8" circle)
Use small cup for buttons down the body (2 1/4" circle)
Cover pencil lines with markers.


Design a nose for your new snowman.  Or use this free printable I whipped up for you.


And make enough to have for each of the kids participating. Names on the front or back to keep track of who put which nose where is a big help.  (ahem.... experience)



Color in areas you want with markers and embellish however you like.


Now sit back and enjoy watching all the kids' faces light up when you hang the poster on the wall and  give them each a nose of their very own.  AND........ don't forget the blind fold.  😉

If you do this, please share with us over on the Facebook page!  I would love to see any other ideas you all have done as winter or Christmas classroom games, too.


Monday, December 5, 2016

Tips & Tricks Link Party #96

Welcome to another week of creative links and great shares!  We've go the party started for this week and we still have the Amazon Gift Card going on until this Friday.  Don't forget to enter after taking a look at last week's features and this week's new shares!!


Tips and Tricks Link Party

Most Clicked:

Host Favorites from Last Week:
Jessica (My Life By Jess) - Peanut Butter Cheesecake Balls from A Mama's Story
Krysta (KrystaSteen.com) - Turkey Ham and Cheese Strata from Marilyn's Treats

Copy & Paste the code (below) to let your readers know to come over & party with us!
Fearlessly Creative Mammas
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, November 28, 2016

Tips & Tricks Link Party #95

Hope all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday weekend!  Did you get a couple of great deals with all the sales going on?!  Did you stay on budget? Or have you already spent more than anticipated? It's always an interesting balance of giving to your loved ones and sticking to a money plan.

Here are a couple things to help you out:

1) Download and print these free budget helpers.  Just follow this link.

2) Enter below to win an Amazon gift card.  Who doesn't like a little extra cash to help through the holidays?!

Tips and Tricks Link Party


Most Clicked:

The Absolute Best Brownie Recipes from Dreaming of Leaving

Host Favorites from Last Week:


Kathleen (Fearlessly Creative Mammas)
- 13 DIY Christmas Wreaths from Just 2 Sisters

Krysta (KrystaSteen.com)
 - Cranberry Snack Cake from Cooking with Carlee

Jessica (My Life By Jess)
- DIY Corner Block Moulding Caddy from Our Gilded Abode

Cassie (Southeast by Midwest)
 - Homemade California Rolls from Lou Lou Girls

Gabby (Not Too Shabby Gabby)
 - Pumpkin Nutella Earthquake Cake from Lamberts Lately

Copy & Paste the code (below) to let your readers know to come over & party with us!
Fearlessly Creative Mammas
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, November 21, 2016

Tips & Tricks Link Party #94

Party time is here again!!  Take a look at last week's picks and most clicked and then take a moment to look at all the great shares for this week.

Tips and Tricks Link Party

Most Clicked:

Host Favorites from Last Week:

Cassie (Southeast by Midwest)
- Homemade Liquid Castle Soap from County Mouse City Spouse

Krysta (KrystaSteen.com)
 - 30 Day Christmas Countdown Bible Study from Your Vibrant Family

Kathleen (Fearlessly Creative Mammas)
 - Personalized Water Bottle Holder from Simple Practical Beautiful

Jessica (My Life By Jess)
 - Triple Layer Pumpkin Cheesecake Pie from Marilyn's Treats

Gabby (Not Too Shabby Gabby)
 - Pumpkin Shaped Dinner Rolls from Margaret's Morsels

Copy & Paste the code (below) to let your readers know to come over & party with us!

Fearlessly Creative Mammas
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