Gift Guides, Holiday Gift Guide 2017, Holiday Shopping, Tips and Tricks

Gift List Organizer – Free Printable

How organized are you right now with your gift giving regimen?

I thought so! Let me help you out and explain how I stay organized as I shop for those on my list. Christmas is a 2 day event for us. Both my husband and I have our families near with both of us within 60 miles of all parents, siblings and some uncles. 

Gift List Organizer - Free Printable

My husbands family hosts Christmas Eve and my family is Christmas Day so that leaves Christmas morning for our boys and us alone for Santa gifts and breakfast.

I need lists! I need ideas too so when I get them I need to keep them in one spot and with me while I shop. I know I can keep notes on my phone but I also use my phone for store apps and coupons so flipping between deals and notes is a pain sometimes.

Now there are a few tips to maximize your organizing when buying multiple gifts……

I kept the spaces wide. You can always print extra copies if you have more names and lines needed, but here is why the space is important. Take a look at my ‘actual’ lit for the kids i shop for (who won’t see this post so no worries about spoiling their gifts they will be getting)

List example

Keep scrolling to print your Gift List Organizer —>

Take Austin, my nephew for example. I sent him a text asking for ideas, he said he wants the game Destiny 2 and after confirming it wasn’t already bought by my SIL I told her he will get it from me. But, then one day I was at Ross and saw some Seahawks PJ pants on clearance and had to get them for him. He is a huge fan so I have 2 gifts to fit into the space. See I am not done with my nieces yet-I still need to pick up gift cards for them.

stay organized

Even your donations can be entered so it stays all together for your budget checks.

Keeping it neat is much batter for your organization so having this much space is just clean and better to look at. I use a binder like the one advertised below to take shopping with me to hold my lists, ads and savings coupons.

You will want these printed out and jot your ideas down as you head shopping. If you purchase, a quick cross out with a pen will keep you from having to remember when your knee deep in gifts days later and shopping that long night is a blur now.

I check the ‘Purchased’ box once I am done with that person. That feeling to see a check mark in every box of your entire list is such a fantastic feeling.

The cost section is for you. To look at and cringe or state your budget in advance. But, hopefully it’s there because you did better than expected and you beat your budget!

*Here it is! Click on the Gift List below and print your copies!*

Happy shopping!***

Shop smart and make sure you visit one of my go-to sites Cuckoo for Coupons. They are on it for on time sales at about every store out there! I always browse her site and take notes on who has the best price on what I need that week! New to couponing or using store apps-she has all your tutorials and info in the website too!

Back to School 2017, Deals, Fashion, Kids, Reviews by Anthony

Back to School Deals When Shopping with Swap.com

I have partnered with Swap.com for this feature

 

It’s tough when it comes to back to school shopping. We are just close enough to start thinking about saving for the Holidays and we just got over the vacations and overspending of summer. Now the kids needs new clothes for fall, shoes and supplies. I start in the summer when I see clearance and deals on supplies and stock up and look for food savings if the expiration dates will last so that when August hits I at least have a head start on those items.

 

When it comes to clothes, I never overlook second hand. I have scored some great items and even new ones with tags for cheap. I try to scour consignment first checking for those great finds then I am left with not such a huge list when I hit the bigger box stores. It really helps the budget and my boys head off in style and with items they love.

 

Back to School Deals When Shopping with Swap.com

Back to School Deals When Shopping with Swap.com

Back to School Deals When Shopping with Swap.com

This year we are back to school shopping with swap.com and you won’t believe what we scored for so little. When our box came of items my son sat on the couch and proudly picked out, we averaged about $6 an item shipped. this includes soccer style jersey, Adidas wear, basketball shorts, NBA tanks and even a sleep robe he wanted. You can’t beat that. he has been wanting to find a Shaq Lakers jersey for a long time and they are priced anywhere from $20 used to $100. He is so excited for it. We even found clothes that are still new with the tags. Check it all out in the video below:

 

Take some time to browse Swap.com for the kids and you! You can even toy shop as well. Looking for a place to donate the outgrown clothes in your home? Swap.com can take those for you. Find out more at Swap.com and your first order is free shipping over only $10 so make sure you stock up on that first order! After that

Back to School 2017, Deals, Gift Guides, Holiday Shopping, Home

Shopping Jet For My Summer Patio Decor – Savings Code Inside #ShopPurple

Shopping Jet For My Summer Patio Decor - Savings Code Inside

This is such a busy summer for our family. We are currently in a hotel waiting for our home build to complete. I was dreading the hotel living for 4 weeks but now that we are here it has been fun having the down time. I have visions of how I want to style the new home and because it is summer I want to get my yard and porch set up fast. With a 9 year old into sports and water guns, my yard can become a mess real fast so having a decorative option for storing the summer toys that also can be used as a furniture piece is a must have in all social yard spaces.

I had a deck box in the previous house and we used it until it became too dirty to get clean. While shopping I wanted one that had a more functional look and not just a piece of storage so I browsed Jet.com and hit the favorite (heart) button and a few of them. This way I can price shop. I came right back to Jet.com after all as they had the one I wanted at a 48% savings. I also was able to set it up without any tools!

My Suncast Extra Large Patio Deck Box will hold 103 gallons. That means water guns, sports balls, bats, mitts, sprinkler sets and more will all fit into this box neatly tucked away and when I need a table top it is large and tall enough to use as an outdoor piece while entertaining.

What I love about shopping here is that depending on my buying needs such as the chance of a refund needed or if I pay by debit, etc.. I can get my price adjusted further. If I need more than 1 I can get a bulk discount on some items. Also it has a price tracker so I know when I hit my free shipping mark.

To top off the shopping features there are categories you can browse in and with the heat here I have been shopping the Summer Headquarters collection. Once I take care of my patio needs, I can shop for party planning when we do our house warming. I can find everything from fun water bottle labels to the soda and chips I need. It will be a busy process unpacking and decorating my new home so the idea of having Jet.com drop will ship all of my party needs after my yard is ready is such a relief. The day that box comes and all I have to do is unpackage and set out the party supplies will be exactly the effort and energy I will have left in me. For now, I get the deck box to organize my patio and didn’t even have to lug it in and out of my car because I did not have to travel to the store to get it!

I have a sweet deal for you…

NEW TO JET.COM? You get to save 15% on your first 3 orders when you use the promo code SAVE15 “see site for details”.

New customers only. Min. $35 in eligible merchandise per order required. Max. discount $20 per order. Offer expires 9/1/2017 at 12:00 AM PST; if any of your first 3 orders are not placed by this date, they are not eligible for the discount. Excludes products marked as ineligible for promotion on the product display page. Offer cannot be applied to previous orders and cannot be combined with other offers or discounts. Offer is subject to change or cancellation. Void where prohibited. Brand, category and other restrictions may apply.

NOT NEW TO JET.COM? You still get all of the benefits and great prices they have to offer. I just got a birthday card from them and it had a promo code for me. Let me remind you of the advantages of shopping J:

• Free shipping over $35
• 2-day delivery with no membership fee on thousands of items
• 24/7 U.S.-based customer service
• Jet shows you items that can ship together so you can save money
• Buy multiples on Jet to save
• Waive returns on Jet to save”
Do you have an event coming up or yard space need? I challenge you to head on over and browse Jet! Let me know if you find what you were looking for in a quick comment below! 
Apps, Car Talk, Sponsored, Tips and Tricks, Travel

Tips On Negotiating The Best Car Price

This post is in sponsorship with Cars.com. I was compensated but topic/words are my own

Tips On Negotiating The Best Car Price

Almost more dreading than deciding on the car you want is the negotiating process at the dealership. We have 2 older boys and my husband and I can’t hold onto cars for long so we are typically in a car dealership a few times a year. Not only are we in a dealership for ourselves but because friends and family ask my husband to come car shopping with them because they know how much my husband loves the negotiation process. It is a bit of a weird obsession he has as a negotiator. So I had him help me gather our thoughts into 3 (proven by us over and over again) negotiating tips when buying a new or used car.

Do Your Homework

You have searched cars galore and now you have narrowed it down to a model or 2 you may be leaning towards. This is where you begin your pre-dealership visit homework. When you hear the words from finance at the dealership “We’ll make you a great deal”, do you really know what a great deal on that car is? Not if you haven’t done your homework. We like using Cars.com to search for fair market values on the exact cars we want to look at.

Grab a notepad and pencil and write down the make/model of cars you want to see. List the fair market value that matches the exact features/series for that car. Do this for all of the cars you wish to see so it is handy in a moments notice. Make sure you keep Cars.com or the Cars.com apps available incase you find yourself liking a different model than you anticipated. Now, you have a number and a “great deal” will be that number or below.

Note Your Bottom Line

You know the fair value so now you can find your best bottom line! This will be what you want to pay after your trade in or down payment, etc.. Here is an example of the tone you can use in negotiation (right away) when it comes to fair value and your bottom line. For this example I plugged my car into Cars.com – 2016 Honda CR-V Touring Edition. I then clicked on comparison tool and see that the lowest it has sold for is $34,156 and the highest is $35, 139 with an average price of $34, 648. That gives me a good start to find my bottom line.

“I have a … to trade in. My bottom line is $34, 700. I know that fair value is $34, 735  so I am not asking for too much to come in at my bottom line. I don’t care how you work the numbers. You can discount the car or change the trade-in value on my old car but I need that bottom line top be $34, 735 (after registration fees).”

They may try and say you need to put more down (hence, the price becomes more than your bottom line), but you can tell them to please go back and rework the cost and trade in to get you to that number you gave. You may have to have a down payment especially if the car you trade in is a lot lower in value. Know your comfortable down payment mark and if they are close-get them closer!

Be Prepared For A few Hours Time (and no kids)

Most dealers play a game of wearing you down. You come in with a fair value, a bottom line and down payment and they will still try and stay away from your mark. Be prepared to send the dealer back to the sales manager again and again and be prepared for the finance guy to be “busy” and make you wait for a response. This wears you down fast. You just want to accept and go home. We have never walked out of a dealership because we allowed them to break us down-ever!

Keep the kids at home or with a sitter and most importantly, be prepared to walk away with no car! We have done that more than once. When they play hard to negotiate we turn to a phrase something like this,

” Listen. We don’t NEED this car today. You are our first dealership stop. It looks like we are too far apart so we will be taking off. Thank you so much for your time.”

If you have to walk away it is most likely because that truly is going to become your best deal. We have done it and we have been called back with the deal we wanted. We have also used it as leverage for the next stop by explaining to their team that we walked on place one for being too far off. It is a process and you need to be prepared to spend hours and even walk away and start again. In the end, it is your money and your monthly payment that will become your reward for taking the proper time.

So, head on out. Cars.com is truly a must visit before you head to the dealership. My note above says this is a sponsored post, but I am serious when I tell you that we never head out to shop before using their website to do our homework. I am honored now that I can team up with them for this post. We use it to browse cars, read reviews and find fair values. Plus, when you tell a dealership you found the fair value on Cars.com it is hard for them to argue with you. Hold your ground, it will work out for you and your wallet.

I’m curious, did you learn something new here? Are you less intimidated to car shop now?

Apps, Brands with a Cause

Use your shipping boxes to send back donations to Goodwill for free

Christmas is right around the corner! Many of us are still scrambling to complete our shopping lists, running store to store or finalizing our shopping online. Often, with the hustling and bustling this time of year we can lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas or start to feel a bit of the bah humbug creeping in. When this happens, it’s time to stop, and reflect on the true magic of the season, giving back. This doesn’t mean you have to drain your wallet on gifts for other people. Giving back this year can be as simple as decluttering your house and shipping those items to Goodwill. The best part, you can do this for free.

goodwill3
This year Goodwill stores have teamed up with Give Back Box to enable you to reuse your online shipping boxes to donate your unwanted household items (such as gently used clothing, handbags, shoes, etc) to Goodwill at no cost to you.
Here’s how it works:

Give Back Box gives every cardboard box a second life to help people in need. Some of the international partners in support of the Give Back Box are Ann Inc, Asics, Ann Taylor Loft, Overstock, Dockers, Levis, Bon Ton and StyleUpGirl.com. These retailers are leading the way towards finding innovative solutions to widespread social and economic issues. You can see all of the participating retailers at givebackbox.com.

goodwill

By gathering your unwanted items that are stuffed in the back of your closet, under your bed, in your attic or garage or wherever it is hiding, you can pack it up and ship it to Goodwill to help create jobs.

Thanks to the job training programs made possible by donations of clothes and household items, Goodwill helped place more than 312,000 in jobs in the United States and Canada in 2015 — that’s one person finding a job every 23 seconds of every business day. So you’re literally donating your stuff AND helping to create jobs.

Did you know, you can even calculate how much your donation helps your local community by using Goodwill’s donation impact calculator, a feature available within the Goodwill Locator App and at Goodwill.org (click “Explore Our Map” on the homepage to access the calculator). Simply input the items you’re donating to calculate the number of hours of career counseling, on-the-job training, résumé preparation, financial planning classes, and other services you’ve helped provide people facing challenges finding employment.

goodwill1

Gift Guides, Holiday Shopping, Kids, Parenting, Tips and Tricks

Toy Buying Guide and 5 Tips to Consider

Whether it is for Christmas, donations, a kids birthday invite or relatives celebration it can be hard to decide the right gift when buying toys for kids of other families. You can always put an ask out, but that always ends up with a general answer and you still remain clueless. There are toys that have a lot of pieces and would it be too advanced or toys that are loud and would their parents be highly unappreciative. Their are lists of top toys of the year available and if you’re lucky you can locate one, but what if you can’t?

toy buying toys
Source: Pixabay

I have reached out to a few experts who share some toy buying tips for you:

1.Sandra Magura of Simply Pinspired and Author of HippoDuck says:

We take the kids to local toy stores and toy areas and when they see things they like/want we put them on the amazon list. We then share our lists with our family and they can purchase what they want. That way we don’t get doubles, they don’t get things that are

2. Stevanne Auerback a.k.a. Dr Toy’s FREE printable List of Questions to Consider When Toy Buying <<click HERE>>

3. To see an Age-by-Age Toy Buying Guide from Genius of Play <<Click Here>> 

4. Tanya Mitchell of Learning RX on choosing toys for children with learning struggles:

Look for toys that build cognitive skills, the foundational tools that help us think, learn, read and remember,” advises Tanya Mitchell, VP of Research & Development for LearningRx (www.LearningRx.com), the world’s largest one-on-one brain training company. “For example, the game Simon, which uses tones and lights to create a pattern, builds visual processing, short-term memory, attention and processing speed. Battleship requires logic & reasoning, working memory, planning and problem solving. If you have a grandchild with attention struggles, look for toys that work on attention. If your nephew struggles with math, look for toys that develop mental math, numerical concepts and math computations. We have a free three-page Games for Skills chart of well-known games, which can be downloaded at www.unlocktheeinsteininside.com to help determine which toys might work best for particular skill building.

[bctt tweet=”ParentingHealthy.com has your Toy Buying Guide with tips and toy suggestions” username=”3sonshavei”]

My list of favorite toys by age (contains affiliate links):

Baby: VTech Drop and Go Dump Truck

Toddler: Little Tikes Bath Drums

Preschool: Alex Jr. Tots Art Start

Elementary: Wonder Workshop Dash Robot

Tween: Poop Emoji Plush Pillow

Teen: Holy Stone Drone with Live WiFi Camera

College Student: Hot Water Electric Kettle

Tell me, what are your children asking for the Holidays? What are there ages?