Saturday, September 6, 2014

Back From Vacay

I haven’t really gone on vacation…but it sounded better than saying “hey I’m back from the break that I didn’t mean to take from my blog.”  I’m sure you can agree.

Sooooo much has happened since I last posted really sat down to write a post. {I started this post beginning of August, smh}

Lately I have been going thru a lot of things…not all bad or anything, just a lot.  I was having awful migraines so I went to the doctor…they said everything looks normal and gave me a prescription for the headaches.  Well I don’t wanna be on those kind of meds ya know?  The kind that keep you put because you can’t drive with them, yet I have to take them at work because that’s where the headaches are mainly from…it wasn’t fun.  If you’ve ever experienced migraines or headaches to the point of having to obtain a prescription then you know what I’m talking about.  I’m sorry, but I have no interest in being a zombie.

I had an appointment with the optometrist scheduled and after all the tests was told that my vision was spot on.  Really?  You have got to be kidding me.  I was thinking if this is the second place to tell me there’s nothing wrong with me I’m going to spazz.  Even if it was being told to me by a handsome bald doctor…spazzing would commence if necessary.

The eye doctor said that the reasons why I may be experiencing vision issues and headaches are because of my work computer.  Honestly enough, several months back our work computers had new operating systems installed and ever since then I’ve seen an increase in my frequency and intensity of my headaches.  No matter how I’ve tried to adjust the screen settings I would get no relief.  Until now.

The doc prescribed me glasses to use for computer use.  Specifically my work computer.  I do wear them at home sometimes when I’m on my laptop…like now, when I’m doing a blog post and the background is white.  The glasses help to cut down the glare and cut down on the eye strain…hence the ridiculous headaches.

This is my first week wearing them.  They take some getting used to, but I can say with confidence that by week end…my headaches have improved.  I’ve only had a couple this week and they were really onset for other reasons.  I haven’t had to use the prescription and I’m grateful.  **updated** it’s been a month now and I’ve hardly had any headaches.  Any headaches I have had are due to the nature of my job as it is.  I’m truly grateful that I haven’t had migraines and haven’t had to take the zombie meds at all!

I won’t even go into all of the symptoms I have from my current work.  It’s really crazy when I think about it, but until there is change on that front, it’s best not to post about it… #changewillcome

If you’ve ever experienced crucial headaches then you can understand why when I come home from work the LAST thing I wanted to do was open up my laptop.

I have had a change in my schedule at work.  In the few weeks since it has changed I haven’t been able to get myself accommodated.  On top of that there’s all kinds of change going on at work and it’s been highly overwhelming.  Add on top of that all the clutter that I feel is coming at me from every angle when I come home…whew yeah that’s where I’m at right about now…just a tad bit overwhelmed.

A couple of other things have happened… the kids and I went on another beach trip.

DH got a new car!!  This is crazy awesome because his last car was crappola and now it feels much better knowing that he’s okay when he’s driving.  Getting back to the world of a car payment and full insurance isn’t great, but the way it all worked out and will continue to work out makes all the difference.

Buddy Boy lost his first tooth!!

So now that I’m back from my blog vacay I am looking forward to getting back to my love.  And a side note…to my giveaway winners wondering why I’m so slack…all items have been sent with bonus goodies due to my just not being able to get it together : )

Monday, September 1, 2014

4th Grade Back to School Style and a Kindergartner!

Last week was the first day of school for my babies.

Last week was also the first time overtime has been offered at my job in quite some time.  I had to jump on it.  Needless to say, last week was a doozy of a week.
Here it is Labor Day and I finally feel like I’ve made some kind of impact on my sleep deficit.  It only takes a lot of coffee, some 5 hour energy, vitamins and a couple of days of waking up sans alarm.

Now let me share Brianna’s 4th grade back to school style…

Brianna wanted something to the side and I decided to do a sorta side-swept Mohawk.  She also wanted colorful beads so I compromised and did clear beads.  I don’t like the colorful beads clashing with her uniform colors.

I’ll be honest, I am dealing with the temptation of relaxing her hair again.  I know it will pass but it’s difficult not to succumb to the temptation.  I guess if it really gets to that point then I will just pay someone to braid her hair.  Because I am so over it.

Now onto my little man’s first day of kindergarten!

When Brianna started kindergarten, she went one day, the boys went the next day and on the third day everybody went.  Well for some reason the school decided to make it rather odd to say the least.  Brianna started the 4th grade on Monday.  Jordan went to his first day of kindergarten on Wednesday.  He doesn’t go back until tomorrow (Tuesday).  Yeah, makes no sense to me. 

Either way, he was one excited buddy boy!

I will say that I got a little teary eyed but I didn’t actually shed any tears.  Now I can’t speak for tomorrow when he’s getting on the school bus with his sister.  Hopefully I won’t be a ball of tears!  I am glad that he’ll be with his big sister, which takes away from some of the anxiety.  Now it’s time for us to get ready for his first real week of kindergarten J

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Back To School Hairstyle Ideas

This weekend starts the real countdown to back to school.  That means I am taking out Brianna’s box braids this weekend and starting to decide what style I will do for her Back to School style.  I haven’t really posted much this summer about her hair.  That’s because there hasn’t been much to post.  I’ve done simple braid styles, a lot of buns, and I’ve let her wear her hair flat ironed in ponytails and half up half down do’s.  It’s been an overall mild summer, not too humid; but she’s not ready to have her hair out regularly.  She doesn’t do her part.

If your child hasn’t yet returned to school and you’re looking for a back to school style, check out some of Brianna’s past styles for inspiration :-) 

This is definitely a go-to style when I just can’t think of anything to do.  Depending on your child’s hair texture, it can last a couple of weeks.  Check out the original post.

I like fishbone braids as you will see.  Here’s a cute style that I did that had a little variation to it.  Check out the original post here.

Here is Brianna’s back to school from last year.  It took some time to do but it was well worth it for the way it turned out!  You can see more pics of this style here.

Here’s one of my first attempts at a fishbone braid style.  I may try another variation of this soon.  This post shares the style, products used, and some of my blogger inspirations.

Probably one of the more simple styles mentioned in this post is this braided mowhawk with twists.  It’s quick and cute.  Especially if you have a few bows to spruce it up.  See the post here.

Hopefully I’ve given you some style inspiration for your daughter.  I’ve even given myself some ideas.  Now it’s time to tackle taking out this hair.  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

In Two Weeks

Wow.  Where did the summer go?  In two weeks my kiddos will be going back to school.  Ahem.  Brianna will be going back and Jordan will be going for the first time!  Jordan will be going to Kindergarten!!! Brianna will be going to the 4th grade!  I’m soooo thankful to no longer have to pay for daycare!  This will make the first time in 9 years that I will not be paying for full time daycare.  Let’s pause and think on that shall we.

Thank you.

Now I’ll be paying for after-school care.  As of now that’s an inexpensive option thankfully.  When we move, I’ll have an option but it will cost more.  We’ll cross that bridge when we get there.  For now I am just thankful that the cost goes down significantly.  And it’ll be here in just two weeks!  It’s really hitting me as I type...if you’ve been in this space before, you know how I feel.  Like omg!!! In two weeks I will be daycare free!!!!  How liberating is that?!?!

Another benefit that just dawned on me…this year some of the schools in the county have been selected to have free breakfast and lunches.  My kid’s school was one of the select few.  That’s a blessing for sure!  I was paying on average $25-$30 each time I got paid to cover Brianna’s lunch.  That would have doubled up to $60 adding Jordan to the mix.  Now that’s $60 saved!!!  {Too bad the school I want them to attend when we move is not one of the chosen, but again…the bridge}

I really do try to find the small things to be grateful for.  Some days I’m better at it than others.  My goal is to stay 49:51 meaning if I can at minimum be happy and grateful 51% of the day then I've tipped the scales in my favor.  There’s your tip for the day J

I was just coming to close up this post and I just got off the phone with my Mom.  She called to say she wanted to know where I shopped for the kids uniforms.  I told her that I prefer Old Navy and JCP and then Walmart.  Well she was redeeming her credit card rewards points and ordered me a couple of gift cards for Old Navy and JCP!  I am truly grateful!!!  We are set to get started with school but I was going to get more for the cooler weather after school started anyway, now it’s less coming out of my pocket!!!  See what I mean about the 51%???  It works!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Sunday Coupon Inserts

I am admittedly burned out by couponing.  But I have to face reality…couponing makes everything else work.  I don’t coupon because I want to, I coupon because I have to.  We’re back to school shopping and maybe that’s what slapped my face with reality.  I’m getting good deals…but I would have more to spend if I got back on track with my couponing.  So that’s what I’ve decided to do.

I’ve stopped getting my newspaper delivered.  I will restart it eventually but as of late I’ve just been picking up the Raleigh paper {the one I had delivered} and the Greenville paper up on the way to church, or if I’m rushing, on the way back home.  Well last weekend I had plenty of time to stop and get the papers on the way to church.  It was pouring down rain.  And they were out of the Raleigh paper.  When I got home and went thru my paper that I did get…there were no coupons.  Ugh!

I decided it was time to place my first order for coupons J

I went to Sunday Coupon Inserts and did a quick skim of what was in the inserts.  Really good coupons on items my family uses.  So I purchased 3 sets of the 2 Red Plum inserts and 2 sets of the Smart Source insert.  The price of the coupons weren’t bad, but the shipping was higher than I’d like.  However, it was priority mail with insurance and ordering on a Sunday evening and having them on Tuesday made the shipping charge worth it.  I paid right under $13 and I’m okay with that.

Some people like to order coupons by the product and some like to order by the inserts.  My current ways of shopping don’t require me to get 50 coupons of one kind nor do the stores in my area make it feasible for that, so buying inserts when I don’t get them in my paper or don’t get a paper or when they have a lot of good coupons in them is the way to go for me.

Not only do I need to step it up with coupons, I need to step it up with my overall ways of saving.  I’ve even slacked on my couponing apps.  That’s not so much me not wanting to save as it is I’m so very over this craptastic phone of mine.  {September will be here soon and so will the new iphone}  I mean I honestly hardly use my phone anymore.  What’s the point?  It causes more frustration than anything.  But I have slowly but surely gotten back to checking my savings apps and scanning my receipts.

It also doesn’t hurt that I’ve been catching a few Extreme Couponing marathons on tv over the past couple of weekends and it’s really given me the kick in the pants that I needed!  I always love watching, it’s so motivating! 

With all of that being said… I’m getting prepared for Super Doubles coming up this week at Harris Teeter J

Sunday, July 20, 2014

McDonald's Chicken McBites Giveaway!!! {Closed}

In case you didn't get to take advantage of your local McDonald's offering their free snack size Chicken McBites this past week, then you're in luck.  This giveaway is for you!

I wanted to make this giveaway super easy so be sure to enter :-)

The Rules

There are 20 Free McDonald's Snack Size Chicken McBites prizes up for grabs.

They are only redeemable at McDonald's in North and South Carolina.

If you're a chosen winner and you're not in one of those states, I will still send to you, just don't be disappointed ok?

Some winners may win more than once :-)

The giveaway will run from 7/21/14 @ 12am - 7/27/14 @ 11:59pm.  All times EST.

Winners are selected randomly by Rafflecopter.

With all of that being said... Good Luck!!!

I am a VIP blogger partnered with Eastern North Carolina McDonald's.  This is a sponsored giveaway.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

McDonald's Chicken McBites Event on 7/17

I wanted to come and share a quick post to let those of you in the Eastern North Carolina area that on Thursday July 17, 2014 you can get a free snack-size McDonald's Chicken McBites!!!  Just come to an area McDonald's from 5-7pm on Thursday to get yours!

McDonald's wants to bring you smiles to your faces with this perfect poppable snack; perfect for Summer.  So come on over and stop by to get your free gift of grub!

If you're in the Greenville, NC area bring your kids to meet Grimace and Hamburglar at the McDonald's located at 2116 SE Greenville Blvd location {near Greenville Blvd and 10th St intersection} and at the McDonald's located at  4410 East 10th St. {the newest McDonald's by the new Walmart.} There will also be local radio hosts at these locations.

In addition to getting these free tasty Chicken McBites, be sure to stay tuned to my Facebook page where I will be hosting a quick giveaway in the coming days from McDonald's.

I am a VIP blogger partnered with Eastern North Carolina McDonald's.


Saturday, July 5, 2014

Sam's Club Instant Savings

I went to Sam's Club the other day.  Now that I am a member I am realizing some of the perks that I wasn't aware of when I was going with my friend.  One of those perks are the Instant Savings that are loadable coupons.  Pick them out online and they're automatically loaded to your card.  You can print the list or send them to your email so that you can know what you selected when in store.  I love it because it helps to save even more money!

I have a confession to make.

Last week at Harris Teeter it was Super Doubles.  I went to get a handful of things.  Literally.  Didn't get a bunch of free things.  I just wasn't into it.  I have inserts from the past three cycles and I haven't touched them.  I'm burnt out with coupons.  I'm tired of going to the grocery store every week.  I'm tired of trying to stay on top of the couponing and failing miserably. I'm just not into it anymore.  I know this will pass and I'll eventually get back into the swing of things; but for now, no ma'am.

I am realistic however, in knowing that (1) I can't buy everything I need at Sam's Club, (2) I don't have the storage options required to buy many things at once {this will change soon}, and (3) I don't have the means to do large Sam's Club hauls at the moment.  Knowing these things, I did want to go and get a few basic things that I know we use a lot of and are cost effective.

When I saw online the Instant Savings that were available on the items I already buy I was pretty excited.  I couldn't partake in all of them at once financially, but I did appreciate the savings I got on what I did buy.

Here's how I look at it:


I went with syrup on my list. We go thru a lot of syrup.  Syrup is one of those items I've seen the coupon supply dry up on.  When I do see a rare coupon pop up it will either be for a brand I don't prefer or won't be a good value.  I like Mrs. Butterworth's or Aunt Jemima brand syrup.  When they're on sale I will get them, but they don't go on sale often.  At Sam's I got a 2-pack of 64oz each of Mrs. Butterworth's syrup for $7.28.  That comes to $3.64 each and I don't anticipate having to buy more syrup for a few months.  Just to put that into perspective...the current retail price of a 24oz size of Mrs. Butterworth's syrup is $4.19 at Harris Teeter.  On sale it may go down lowest I'd say $2.97.  I still came out with a better deal.

I like to get my bagged salad from Sam's Club now too.  When I got it the last time the 2lb bag of salad lasted for two weeks and helped me get my eating under control.  Last time I got just hearts of romaine and this time I got iceberg and romaine mix for a few cents cheaper.


A 5 lb bag of Tyson chicken nuggets were $9.98 with Instant Savings of $2.00.  Getting that size bag of chicken nuggets for the regular price at most stores of $7.98 for a smaller size is insane!


I got the same pack of Mt. Dew bottles I've been getting at Sam's Club at an already good value of $6.98 with an Instant Savings of $2.00 off added that's just mind boggling to me! lol $4.98 for a 15 pack of Mt. Dew!!! A 6 pack of the same size bottles is currently on sale at Harris Teeter for $4.39.

I got other deals too but I just wanted to share how I'm really loving Sam's Club and I cannot wait to move and have more storage space in order to really take advantage of how much I can save in both time and money.  I'd rather just go to the grocery stores sporadically and do Sam's Club hauls monthly or probably even less after the first few trips.  I still want to save money but right now, I'd rather shop this way.

I will need to invest in some shopping bags for refrigeration that way I can keep the cold stuff cold on the way home.  I know Rachel Ray has some on QVC, and I've seen a couple I like on the Sam's Club website.  I'll do some looking around.  Bulk shopping makes me want to invest in a truck! Imagine me in a F-150!! lol I'm serious tho!  I'm not really a truck kinda girl, but it would be cool to have as a third vehicle. {I dream big and in color}  I've been fantasizing about the Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo a lot lately :-)  It's such a sexy beast!

Happy Shopping & Still Saving!!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Wow That Was Fast!

I had a whirlwind weekend and I wanted to take a moment to share how I manifested it.
Thursday night as I was going to bed, I was really thinking “I wanna go to the beach Saturday.”  I was on my way to sleep, eyes already closed.  I thought to myself “I should look at my texts from my Mom and see what dates she was talking about going to the beach.”  Because I was already on my way to sleep, I didn’t want to open up my phone.  I just figured I’d look it up in the morning.
Basically, I wanted to go to the beach, but didn’t want to really have to spend money to do so.  It’s not my pay week so I didn’t want to spend more than $20.  I also didn’t want to put the wear and tear on my car seeing as how I need a new tire, an oil change, ya know, regular maintenance.
I woke up Friday morning to a text from my Mom about going to the beach! {I never did find the other text I was looking for, I must have deleted it by mistake.}
Now, I was thinking of just going to Atlantic Beach, the closest to me.  My Mom was talking more Carolina Beach which is more South of me.  It went from just going to the beach to making a weekend out of it with an overnight stay at a hotel to boot!
I had a wonderful weekend that included going to Carolina Beach, the hotel pool, going to Carrabba’s for dinner, the hotel pool the next day and then going to Topsail Beach.  It was me, my Mom and the kids.  It was their first time in a hotel and they really enjoyed that.  We normally stay in a beach house.

Lobster Ravioli @ Carrabba's

breakfast at the hotel

Brianna Photobombing Jordan in the pool

We decided that next summer we’ll do the vacation rental again.  No more of this.  We love the beach too much!
I am getting the hang of this LOA thing!  I’m learning and tweaking and am excited to see all of the great things I can bring into my life.  It’s definitely an exciting journey J

left and top right is Carolina Beach
bottom right is Topsail Beach


Thursday, June 26, 2014

On This Journey...

Lately I have been really working on my thoughts, my feelings and just overall keeping them on the up and up.  I’ve been working on my vibrations and my frequency.  Basically the Law of Attraction (LOA).
I would say for the past month or so I have been focusing on what I want.  What I want the most is to move into my dream home.  Honestly I would be happy to move period as long as it met our needs.  But as you may have read in a previous post, I am testing the LOA.  And the dream house called out to me, I didn’t call out to it, so that’s why it is my focus.  I am in love with the home. 
But I’m also realistic.  And although I feel these good feelings and vibes, I still have work to do in my thoughts.  I have been able to pinpoint where I may throw things off in the process….  I don’t have the “woe is me” attitude, but I can have the “I deserve that, why did she get that and not me?”  or “when is it my time?”  These are the areas I am consciously and deliberately working on.  And knowing that these are the areas really helps me to NOT think those type of blocking thoughts.
Anyway, I already feel myself going on a tangent here so lemme rein it back in…jeez.  I decided to try to bring things into my existence (manifest) that I really want.  In no particular order really, because as I’m learning… everything comes in its right timing.  And we really wouldn’t want everything to manifest right away.  Some things take longer than others so that it lines up perfectly.  So long story short because this is become longer than necessary….

his hearing test
I have decided to try to start finding the small blessings in the day.  This week Jordan had his kindergarten assessment at the doctor.  He is developing right on target and that makes me happy.  What makes me even happier is the fact that a couple of years ago we were at the doctor when Jordan had pneumonia.  To go to the doctor for a checkup and find that all is well is truly a blessing.  Because there are so many parents who are in an opposite situation, who are going thru very difficult times with children who are ill and to know what that’s like … that’s a reason to give Him praise right there!!!
The next day at work went well overall.  Until the last 30 minutes.  I received some news that really upset me.  I allowed it to upset me.  I allowed it to change my vibe from feeling good to feeling real shitty.  {I’m getting better with my words but sometimes the sailor words are appropriate.}  I felt so craptastic that when I got off 30 minutes later and I walked to my car I felt my heart racing.  It wouldn’t stop.  Then the tears came.  And they wouldn’t stop.
What’s crazy is that I listen to mostly gospel music now and even that wasn’t helping.  Finally I said to myself “Aria get it together.  Stop it right now.”  I was giving myself my Mom voice lol.  But it worked.  Within 5 minutes to arriving home I had prayed myself out of the panic attack.  The tears had dried up and I wasn’t smiling but I wasn’t crying profusely anymore either.  I said to myself “Aria, you’re right there, it’s all going to work out for you, that’s all I need to know.”  It helped.  I don’t want to walk into the door and my kids see tears coming down my face.  That’s not the example I’m trying to set!
I am hoping that in a short time I can go into more detail as to why I even got all bent out of shape in the first place…maybe, maybe not.  I could be on to bigger fish to fry by then J
After the kids were in the bed, I pulled up Melody’s blog Deliberate Receiving.  I love her and her blog and how plain she makes it all for me.  I mostly read her blogs at work.  I’ve even subscribed to her on Youtube.  She’s freakin awesome to say the least.  She even has a free e-book on her site that I had never downloaded because, I read her blogs at work and I can’t download anything like that.  It dawned on me that I hadn’t downloaded her book yet.  Like what was I waiting for?!?  So that’s what I did.  I knew it would help immensely.  Talk about light bulb aha moment times ten!!!  If you are on the LOA journey, I suggest you stop reading my post and take a second to go subscribe to her.  You’re welcome J

 Now on to what gave me so much joy yesterday!  Because it takes me a long time to tell a story.  One of the things I’ve wanted for a while is a Sam’s Club membership.  It's been on my list.  I didn’t want to pay the $45 though.  I was willing to wait for another promotional opportunity to arise in order for me to get one.  I daydream about going thru the aisles and filling up my cart with goods and food for my family.  I daydream about filling up my pantry.   It always makes me feel so good and happy.  Well my friend gave me a card this week that her mother in law gave her for a free membership, that she didn't need.  She probably didn’t even know why she thought of me to give it to (lol) but I went to Sam’s Club and I became a member!!!  Woop woop!!! At no cost to me and that truly makes me happy!  I realized that I manifested that and it came in it's own perfect timing.  One of the biggest things I have to remember is that it's not up to me to figure out the "how" in it all.  I'm just supposed to receive it.  This just makes me excited to see what's coming next!  Needless to say,  I did my happy dance for hours J

I said ALL of that to say that I’ve been finding the small blessings to keep me happy.  To keep me smiling.  To keep me in the right vibration to receive what I want.  I will continue to refine and focus my thoughts and I invite you to do the same or if not, you can just watch me J lol
Thanks so much for reading


Tuesday, June 24, 2014

6 Ways to Start Saving for Christmas NOW!!

It’s hard to believe that it’s officially Summer.  It’s even harder to believe that if you blink a few times, it’ll be Fall and then Winter.  Summer always seems to go by the fastest.  But now is the time to start planning for the holidays.  Every year it’s the same thing… you scramble to make it work in November and December and then you’re feeling the effects of it way into the New Year.
Well let’s not let that be the case in 2014.


In a perfect world I would have started my holiday fund at the beginning of the year as I had planned to.  We all know we don’t live in a perfect world.  If we did, we’d have cars with bows on them in our driveway on Christmas morning just like they do on the commercials…except that our spouse isn’t financing it, it was brought by the man in the big red suit!  Yeah I went into a daydream mode for a second there. Lol

I decided to share some ways that I am starting to prepare for the holidays and maybe you’ll find some tips and tricks to help you as well.

These are ways to help you save before you even know what’s on your gift list.
Let’s start with ways to earn Cash back:

Ebates:  I’ve talked about how I love Ebates.  Click here to go back to that post.  Ebates is a great place to get cash back.  Very simply, register for Ebates, if you’re not yet registered click here and when you want to shop at for example, instead of going directly to the website you’ll go to Ebates.  Clicking on the link via Ebates tracks your purchase and in 2-3 days they’ll show your pending cash in your profile.  Every quarter Ebates will send you your cash back in a check or to your Paypal account.  So get your shop on now and get that money back to help with your holiday spending J

Ebates Coupons and Cash Back
Ibotta:  I love Ibotta.  Check out this post to explain why.  Ibotta has really stepped their game up with offers.  It was just groceries before, but now it’s groceries, movies, restaurants, home improvement…the list goes on and on!  Just don’t touch the money until the holidays!  

Shopkick: Out of all of these options, Shopkick is the only one that doesn’t pay you back in cash.  Check out my latest post on Shopkick hereShopkick pays you back in giftcards that will be available in the app.  I have earned enough points to redeem two Target giftcards!  Now I’m working on a few more for the holidays.

SavingStar:  An easy way to save some extra cash just by registering your store card and buying the selected items.  Here’s how Savings Star works (they also have a cashback program like Ebates, I don’t use it) download the app or go to the website.  By purchasing the offers you select and purchasing at the listed stores, you automatically earn the cash back.  Nothing for you to do on your part.  Once your account is over $5 then you can select to have the money come to you in Paypal.  I think that’s a great way to prepare for the holidays as long as you don’t cash out before the holidays! Lol  To get a full rundown on how SavingStar works click here.

Other than those ways of earning cash back, you can save the old fashioned way.  Two ways I suggest:

  1. Create that holiday savings fund.  Check with your bank/credit union to see what is available.  I bank with a credit union and anytime except for October – December you can open a holiday savings fund.
The way it works at my credit union is you set up an amount that you want to automatically draft into the savings fund.  The money in the account does gain interest.  Don’t touch the money and at the end of October the money is automatically transferred to your checking account.

I think this is a really great tool if you know you’re going to do a big ticket purchase.  This is the year your child gets their first iphone or tablet or you’re getting your spouse that watch, xbox or something that is not a small piece of change.  Why not be prepared instead of depending on credit?

  1. Save $5.  This is a trick I’m starting now and it’s actually pretty easy once you set your mind to it.  Basically you will save every $5 bill that you get.  Most of us pay with a card anyway, so if you pay in cash you’re more than likely paying with a $20.  When you get change back as a $5 put it in a different place in your wallet so you don’t spend it.  When you get home, put it in a jar or a piggy bank.  I think a jar would be better so that you can see your savings grow.  DON’T TOUCH IT!!!
Before you know it you will have a couple hundred dollars saved up.
Now I understand that may be hard for you if you’re living paycheck to paycheck as many of us are, but you have to make your mind up and stick to the program.  If you really can’t see putting $5 to the side then start with any loose change.  All of your change you receive you put it in a jar.  Before long, you’ll have more than you expected saved up.

Whether you do Black Friday shopping or you do it all in December, wouldn’t it be nice to have a lot of the money already available before the holiday season even begins?  Remember how zonked out you were after Christmas last year?  Remember how you said you would do it better this year?  Well here’s just a few ways to accomplish those goals.  If you have any other ways to save up for the holidays please share in the comments below!

Thanks for reading!


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