Save Money with Gift Card Discounts #CardOffer317

As a stay at home mom, part of my job, besides keeping the kids alive, is to save money. I wasn’t always like this. However, now I almost make it a game to see how much money I can save. One way I save money is by using coupons. Especially when I am shopping online. Always, always, always look for a coupon code first before checking out! Another way I save is by purchasing gift cards at a discount. Think about it for a moment. If I know I will be shopping at a particular online store and a discounted gift card is available, why wouldn’t I want to buy the gift card first? Not only am I saving money right from the start, but if I am able to find a coupon code to use on my purchase too, I am saving even more!

*This post is sponsored by Tatu Digital Media*

save money

Save Money with These Gift Card Discounts!

From March 17, 2017 through March 31, 2017, Cardpool is giving you a chance to save up to 11% on gift cards from these top brands!

About Cardpool

If you aren’t familiar with Cardpool, you need to be! Cardpool is a gift card exchange site that makes it easy for anyone to securely buy discounted, pre-owned gift cards at up to 35% off or see unwanted gift cards for up to 92% off their value! Every purchase comes with a 180 guarantee. Find out more at cardpool.com.

Don’t forget about using your favorite rewards card when purchasing these discounted gift cards! Earn points, miles or a percentage back…it’s like double the savings! Stock up on gift cards for upcoming holidays, birthday gifts, teacher gifts, etc! We all like saving money! Right?

Giveaway

How would you like a chance to win a $100 Amazon Gift Card?!? Simply allow the giveaway to load below and follow the instructions for entering. If for some reason it does not load, then click on the words “a Rafflecopter giveaway” and it will take you to the giveaway. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Organizing Tips for Your Home

When my husband and I got our first house, it was a small, barely 1000 square foot, bungalow. It was super cute. One of the things I loved most about it was the telephone cubby in the hallway. I always wanted to put an old fashion lookingorganizing tips phone there! After we had our son, and all the “stuff” that comes with having a baby, we quickly out grew that house. Now that we are a family of four, in a bigger house, there are times when it feels like we’ve outgrown this house too. In reality, all we need is some organizing tips to maximize the space we have.

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organizing tips

As you can imagine, when I was asked if I would like to receive a copy of the book, Organize Your Way: Simple Strategies for Every Personalityorganizing tips, it was a no brainer. I had to check it out! You know how we are always taking those tests on Facebook to tell us about our personality, what animal we are most like, etc? Well in this book, there is a quiz that you take to determine which tips and strategies work best for you. I have to admit, I was a bit excited to take the quiz and find out my “PixieType”.

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About Organize Your Way

Organize Your Way is written by professional organizers behind PixiesDidIt®, Katie and Kelly McMenamin. In this book, you find out your personality type (PixieType) and then use real-life methods and systems that match that personality! After taking the quiz, I found out that I am the Classic Structure PixieType, which is totally me. Basically I like to declutter, I pile things (all the time), and I prefer to have written out to-do lists. Totally me!

Pick up your copy now!

Organize Your Way: Simple Strategies for Every PersonalityOrganize Your Way: Simple Strategies for Every Personality

Once you know your PixieType, the book is then broken down to the various sections of your home and Katie and Kelly McMenamin give you organizing tips for that section of your home, based on your PixieType. There are various places in my home (read – my whole home) that need desperate help in the organization department, so I cannot wait to read up on my PixieType and declutter accordingly!

Top Ten Pixie Organizing Tips

*From Katie and Kelly McMenamin

  1. Knowing who you are is key to organization mainly because if you’re pretending to be someone else, it’s hard to remember where that pretend person put something!
  2. Change is hard, so be honest about organizing tasks. People who never hang up their coats in a closet, probably never will; get a coat rack and call it a day.
  3. Perfect isn’t real. Magazine perfection is styled by a professional whose job it is to make everything perfection for the millisecond it takes to snap a photo.
  4. No shame, no blame! You liking clear, spotless surfaces doesn’t make you OCD (it’s not a personality disorder), it’s your personality type.
  5. Later Box It. When you can’t part with a useless item, store it away in a box and revisit that box in a few months (a year), whatever you missed keep, whatever you forgot…dude, let it go.
  6. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Change is hard (see #2) so if storing TP right next to the toilet works for you, do it, but for heavens sake try to make it look niceorganizing tips–unless you live alone on Antarctica then who cares.
  7. Organizing at its core is about retrieval. Period. Can you easily find and get things when you need them? Everything else is an argument about aesthetics.
  8. One-step solutions are golden. Hanging up your coat is a five-step process whereas popping it on a hook is one-step. Light bulb (at least it was for us)!
  9. Be loud & proud. So, you write important To Do’s on your hand in a pinch. Who cares? Don’t apologize, defend it and tell any scolds where they can go.
  10. There’s no best way to organize–just the best one for you.

What are your best organizing tips to add to the list?

Organize Your Way: Simple Strategies for Every PersonalityOrganize Your Way: Simple Strategies for Every PersonalitySodynee Foldable Cloth Storage Cube Basket Bins Organizer Containers Drawers, 6 Pack, GreySodynee Foldable Cloth Storage Cube Basket Bins Organizer Containers Drawers, 6 Pack, GreyClosetMaid 31493 Fabric Storage Bin, LargeClosetMaid 31493 Fabric Storage Bin, LargeAkro-Mils 66486 CLDBL 12-Gallon Plastic Storage KeepBox with Attached Lid, 21-1/2-Inch by 15-Inch by 12-1/2-Inch, Semi ClearAkro-Mils 66486 CLDBL 12-Gallon Plastic Storage KeepBox with Attached Lid, 21-1/2-Inch by 15-Inch by 12-1/2-Inch, Semi Clear

Tween Easter Basket Fillers

Both of my kids are tweens. My son will be an official teenager in June. I know. I’m kind of scared! Each year, I get really excited to fill their Easter baskets. Since we celebrate Orthodox Easter, which is sometimes on a different date, we get 75% off Easter stuff! However, as much as I love filling Easter baskets, now that my kids are older, I sometimes feel like I’m filling it with a bunch of junk because most of the traditional Easter fillers are geared towards younger kids. To help you all out, I’ve put together a list of tween Easter basket filler ideas.

tween easter basket

Sport Themed Tween Easter Basket

Right now, my kids spring sports are starting up. My daughter plays soccer and my son plays lacrosse. A fun Easter basket idea would be to make a Sport Themed Tween Easter Basket! I don’t know about your house, but at mine, the kids are forever leaving their water bottles somewhere. Whether they leave it at the field, in the back of my car or at school, I am always buying new water bottles. Here is what I would put in a sports themed tween Easter basket:

Under Armour Undeniable Squeeze Bottle with Quick Shot Lid, Lead, 32 OunceUnder Armour Undeniable Squeeze Bottle with Quick Shot Lid, Lead, 32 OunceSwax Lax Lacrosse Training Balls BlueSwax Lax Lacrosse Training Balls BlueMadSportsStuff Flaming Soccer Ball Over The Calf Socks39 (Royal/Large)MadSportsStuff Flaming Soccer Ball Over The Calf Socks39 (Royal/Large)LAX Lacrosse Crew Socks (Black/White, Large)LAX Lacrosse Crew Socks (Black/White, Large)Stunning White Soccer Ball with Pink Crystals Pendant and 16Stunning White Soccer Ball with Pink Crystals Pendant and 16PopSockets: Expanding Stand and Grip for Smartphones and Tablets - Soccer BallPopSockets: Expanding Stand and Grip for Smartphones and Tablets – Soccer Ball

I know my daughter would be beside herself if that soccer PopSockets showed up in her Easter basket this year! Get a few of the items above (be sure to click on them…they come in other sports and colors), add in a couple pieces of chocolate or jelly beans and you are good to go!

Tech Themed Tween Easter Basket

Is your tween more of a techy? Don’t worry, I got you covered for the tech loving tweens! If your tweens are anything like mine, then they love gift cards! For the tech lover, I highly suggest you get them an iTunes gift card. I like to use my Speedway rewards to get gift cards! Other things I suggest adding are:

iPod Touch 5th 6th Gen Cover Case Transparent Clear Glow Shock Resistant HybridiPod Touch 5th 6th Gen Cover Case Transparent Clear Glow Shock Resistant HybridFintie Folio PU Leather Case Cover for iPad 4th Generation With Retina Display, iPad 3 & iPad 2 (Black)Fintie Folio PU Leather Case Cover for iPad 4th Generation With Retina Display, iPad 3 & iPad 2 (Black)iPad 2 3 4 Screen Protector,TANTEK [HD-Clear][Anti-Scratch][Anti-Glare][Anti-Fingerprint] Tempered Glass Screen Protector for Apple iPad 2 / iPad 3 / iPad 4 (9.7 inch),[Lifetime Warranty]-[1Pack]iPad 2 3 4 Screen Protector,TANTEK [HD-Clear][Anti-Scratch][Anti-Glare][Anti-Fingerprint] Tempered Glass Screen Protector for Apple iPad 2 / iPad 3 / iPad 4 (9.7 inch),[Lifetime Warranty]-[1Pack]Nintendo Classic Mini: Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) ControllerNintendo Classic Mini: Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) ControllerAtari Flashback Classics: Volume 2Atari Flashback Classics: Volume 2

We got my husband the Atari game for his 40th birthday and the kids have had fun playing the games, in between making fun of how the games looked “way back then”!

Book Loving Tween Easter Basket

One thing I really love is that both of my kids love to read. They are always asking to go to the library so they can check out a new book. My daughter is always getting a non-fiction book about animals or something scientific. My son gets any and every graphic novel he can read (that’s appropriate…some of them…not so much). Besides the obvious Amazon Gift Card, I’d also put the following in a book lovers Easter basket:

Kindle Paperwhite E-reader - Black, 6Kindle Paperwhite E-reader – Black, 6Fintie SmartShell Case for Kindle Paperwhite - The Thinnest and Lightest PU Leather Cover With Auto Sleep/Wake for All-New Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (Fits All 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016 Versions), BlackFintie SmartShell Case for Kindle Paperwhite – The Thinnest and Lightest PU Leather Cover With Auto Sleep/Wake for All-New Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (Fits All 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016 Versions), BlackThe Baby-Sitters Club Graphix #1-4 Box Set: Full-Color EditionThe Baby-Sitters Club Graphix #1-4 Box Set: Full-Color EditionMaximum Ride: The Manga, Vol. 1Maximum Ride: The Manga, Vol. 1

While the Kindle Paperwhite is a little more than we would typically spend at Easter, it is a gift that will get them reading. We have a lot of soccer and lacrosse tournaments this year, it will be nice for them to have.

Glamour Girl Themed Tween Easter Basket

My daughter is not a girly girl right now. The idea of getting nail polish and other “girl” stuff is not something she would enjoy. Her friends or one of my nieces would love this basket! In this basket, I would put the following:

Color Club Halographic Hues Nail Polish, Halo, Graphic, .05 OunceColor Club Halographic Hues Nail Polish, Halo, Graphic, .05 OunceFairyGlo Long Lasting Night Glow Gel Nail Polish Soak Off UV LED Dramatic Manicure Decor Kit Nail Art For Party Carnival Dressing 10ml 6724FairyGlo Long Lasting Night Glow Gel Nail Polish Soak Off UV LED Dramatic Manicure Decor Kit Nail Art For Party Carnival Dressing 10ml 6724Tinksky 50 Sheets 3D Design Self-adhesive Tip Nail Art Stickers Decals(Random Color Pattern)Tinksky 50 Sheets 3D Design Self-adhesive Tip Nail Art Stickers Decals(Random Color Pattern)Caboodles On the Go Girl Classic Case, Purple, 2.4 PoundCaboodles On the Go Girl Classic Case, Purple, 2.4 PoundBurt's Bees 100% Natural Moisturizing Lip Gloss, Ocean Sunrise, 1 Tube with Wand ApplicatorBurt’s Bees 100% Natural Moisturizing Lip Gloss, Ocean Sunrise, 1 Tube with Wand ApplicatorEOS Visibly Soft Lip Balm Sphere, Vanilla Mint, 0.25 OunceEOS Visibly Soft Lip Balm Sphere, Vanilla Mint, 0.25 Ounce

Isn’t this a cute basket?!? I absolutely love it!

Which themed Tween Easter basket is your favorite?

Easter Placemat Printable

In our house, we love to get together for Easter. One of my favorite things to do is go to my mother in-laws house to decorate Easter eggs. She makes enough hard boiled eggs so that each person has a dozen or so eggs to color (we usually have about 10+ people decorating eggs). It’s crazy, but so much fun! Like other families, we also enjoy a nice meal together. With a lot of little kids running around and needing something to occupy them, this Easter Placemat printable is perfect!

easter placemat

FREE Easter Placemat Printable

easter placemat

Print your FREE placemat HERE

Isn’t it cute?!? Think about how nice it will be on Easter to get the kids situated at their spot at the table and have them be occupied with their Easter placemat and not running around, getting in the way of everyone setting the food out? Sounds pretty heavenly to me!

For less than $10, you can pick up these crayons from Amazon and give each kid a pack of crayons! That way everyone has their own pack of crayons and there is no fighting!

Bulk Buy: Crayola Crayons 8/Pkg 52-3008 (12-Pack)Bulk Buy: Crayola Crayons 8/Pkg 52-3008 (12-Pack)

If I’m being honest, I’d probably go a step further and pick up these adorable activities books too and put together a little kiddie place setting with the Easter placemat, a pack of crayons and an activity book for each child. Not only are you keeping them occupied during dinner set up, but you are keeping them occupied for a bit after dinner while the adults finish! Even if it’s only for a little bit, it’s still worth it!

Activity Pad Assortment Party Accessory 1 dozenActivity Pad Assortment Party Accessory 1 dozen

What do you usually do for Easter? Is there a particular food you always have? A few recipes you may enjoy for your Easter dinner are:

Best Ham Recipe EVER

Not Your Traditional Lemon Bars

Creamed Spinach Recipe

Keto Diet Success – Tips and Tricks

The thought of giving up sugar can be very intimidating. When I tell you that I was addicted to sugar, I was more than addicted. It was no different that someone being addicted to drugs. I had to have sugar and I had to have it every single day. My mood changes had a lot to do with whether or not I had sugar that day or not. I was, by every definition, addicted to sugar and an emotional eater. That is a dangerous combination. Thats why my Keto diet success story means so much to me. It’s also why I want to share my tips and tricks with you. You can succeed with the Keto diet!

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keto diet success

How Addicted to Sugar was I?

When I tell you I was addicted, I’m not joking around. I would drink 32 oz. Slurpees every single day. Do you know how much sugar is in a 32 oz. Slurpee? Over 115 grams of sugar! Insane! As if that wasn’t bad enough, I also ate a candy bar every single time I set foot in a store or gas station. I justified all that by saying, “well I don’t keep junk food in the house”. Which was true. I didn’t keep it in the house, for the most part. I was just buying it daily and bringing it home with me. Totally not the same thing, yet it is!

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Emotional eating was something I was really good at. Something would make me upset and I would instantly turn to food. The sugarier and carb-ier (not a word, but I’m making it one!), the better. My brain had been trained to associate carbs and sugar with feelings of happiness. As a result, my weight went up and up, but my mood was never really improved. It was a vicious cycle that I was stuck in.

Feel Sad –> Eat Sugar –> Feel (temporarily) Happy –> CRASH, then Repeat

At my heaviest, I weighed 250 lbs. I don’t know if I ever said that out loud before, but it’s true. Clothes shopping was something I did not enjoy. Nothing ever fit right, or it had no shape that just made me look even bigger. When I heard about the Keto diet, I was afraid to try it. Eat fat? That went against every thing I’ve ever heard about dieting. I actually held off trying it for about six months. But, in January of 2016, I reached my breaking point.

I told myself that I would give the diet a try. I weighed myself every single day for about three months because I was so afraid of this diet not working for me, that I figured if I weighed myself every day, then I would know if I started to gain and I could stop. Guess what happened?!? Weight started melting off me. My body started changing drastically. Now, over a year later, I am down 82 lbs. and very close to my goal weight!

Keto Diet Success Tips and Tricks

First things first, you NEED to use My Fitness Pal. If you are following the Keto diet, you need to track your fat, protein and carb macros. If you don’t, you will NOT succeed. I don’t care what anyone tells you…you won’t. Keto is a delicate balance between those three macros. Look for me on My Fitness Pal and send me a friend request. My name is ImLeah525. Also, figure out your macros using this Keto macro calculator.

Secondly, you need to be all in. I know some diets have cheat days. There are no cheat days with this diet. This diet is a true lifestyle change. If you choose to cheat, you need to understand that you will gain. Why? For starters, once you remove all the sugar from your diet, your body stops craving the sugar and other foods. Which is great! However, when you have a cheat day, your brain says “HEY! I remember this” and then all those cravings come back and you will consume more of that sugary treat than you meant to and sometimes for more than just that day. You are essentially starting the Keto diet over after that.

Third, don’t try to find a bunch of substitutes for those sugary foods you are giving up. If you spend all your time trying to find out how you can still have the cake you are giving up, you are going to end up struggling. In my experience, a lot of my Keto diet success is in getting my mind in the right place first. You can’t do that if you are making Keto bread every day or little Keto approved desserts all the time. Once in awhile is OK, but on a daily basis…no.

Fat Bombs? What’s That?

With all that said, you do want to make fat bombs. One of the hardest things, in my opinion, is getting enough fat in. This book, Sweet and Savory Fat Bombsketo diet success, is definitely something you should pick up. It is full of all different types of fat bombs to help you find your Keto diet success! I make a chocolate sunbutter fat bomb that is absolutely delicious.

Sweet and Savory Fat Bombs: 100 Delicious Treats for Fat Fasts, Ketogenic, Paleo, and Low-Carb DietsSweet and Savory Fat Bombs: 100 Delicious Treats for Fat Fasts, Ketogenic, Paleo, and Low-Carb Diets

As always, I am an open book. If you have any questions about my experience with the Keto diet, just ask! I am happy to help. If I don’t have the exact answer, I will do my very best to find the answer for you or point you in the direction that you need to go to find that answer. Below you will find some essential items that I recommend you get to help you get started on your very own Keto diet success story! The two pack silicone molds are a really good price right now on Amazon!

Sweet and Savory Fat Bombs: 100 Delicious Treats for Fat Fasts, Ketogenic, Paleo, and Low-Carb DietsSweet and Savory Fat Bombs: 100 Delicious Treats for Fat Fasts, Ketogenic, Paleo, and Low-Carb DietsOzera 2 Pack Silicone Ice Cube Tray Molds Candy Mold Cake Mold Chocolate Mold, 15 Cavity, BlueOzera 2 Pack Silicone Ice Cube Tray Molds Candy Mold Cake Mold Chocolate Mold, 15 Cavity, BlueWhy We Get Fat: And What to Do About ItWhy We Get Fat: And What to Do About It

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