Thursday, March 26, 2015

8 Ways to Coupon for More Than Groceries

Author: Amber Brubaker

If you’ve started clipping a few coupons on the side, you’ve probably already noticed a big difference in your savings each month. But couponing is only as good as your effort, and if you want to maximize your savings, you should know a thing or two about finding all the coupons available. Grocery coupons are a dime a dozen, but that’s not the only kind of coupon out there. You can save hundreds of dollars a year simply by couponing for other items in addition to groceries.

couponing, saving money, frugal living


Before you begin, however, recognize that if you want to truly save money, you need to alter your entire way of shopping. Couponing is all about planning ahead, watching the sales, and avoiding impulse shopping runs.


Also, think about how you’re going to organize your coupons. Nobody wants to be the crazy coupon lady who holds the line up for ten minutes while she shuffles through her purse and argues with the cashier. You’ll want to organize your coupons into categories, and even consider getting a purse-sized accordian file holder with which you can store them.

With that in mind, consider these different categories of coupons and ways to find them so you can save big.

1. Household Goods

From cleaning supplies to batteries, most people always seem to be running out of something they need for their homes. To keep your house running smoothly, it may seem like you’re running to the store at least twice a week to pick up something or other. That’s no way to save! Plan ahead and look for coupons in magazines, coupon websites, sales ads, and more. Once a month, find and save coupons for household goods and buy them in one trip per month rather than in several a week.

2. Shoes

Nothing beats the infamous BOGO (buy one get one) shoe sale, and shoe stores have them all the time. It’s the perfect opportunity to stock up on shoes you both want and need. So, instead of buying the shoe you love the first time you see it, wait until a BOGO sale comes around, and buy your shoes then. Look for these coupons on consumer websites and in your favorite store’s weekly ad.  

3. Clothing

Saving on clothes shopping doesn’t have to wait until there are sales. You can find coupons for clothing on a weekly basis. Before going shopping, check your favorite clothing stores’ websites and snag the coupons they always have there. Use your smartphone to download coupon apps or look them up on the store website at checkout. You may even be able to save 75 percent on one regular priced item!

4. Dining Out

couponing, saving money, frugal living


You don’t have to say no to ordering pizza every now and then. Just look for coupons. You can get them for sit-down restaurants, take out, delivery, and fast food. Many newspapers and magazines carry coupon inserts, and sometimes you’ll get these coupons in the mail. Don’t throw them out! Use them the next time you don’t have time to cook.

5. Entertainment

Movies, concerts, and sporting events can break the bank. But don’t sweat it too much. If there’s an event you really want to attend, find a coupon. Common coupons include two tickets for the price of one or a certain percentage off large groups. Search the web for these promotions that can save you big.

6. Dental Care

You can also get coupons for services, such as the dentist. Many dentists offer a free cleaning with an exam and x-rays or a certain dollar amount off your first visit. Look for these coupons on the dentist’s website. Here’s an example of what some of these coupons might look like. Remember, just because you’re getting a deal doesn’t always mean you should take it, especially where your oral health is concerned. Do your research before redeeming a dentist’s coupon to make sure you’ll be in good hands.

7. Baby Supplies

It’s no secret that babies are expensive. They’re in constant need of diapers, formula, and wipes, and every time you turn around, they’ve outgrown another outfit. Luckily, other people have taken notice of this difficult situation, and there are entire websites devoted to coupons for baby things.

8. Personal Care

couponing, saving money, frugal living


Personal hygiene products (at least the good ones) aren’t cheap, and you really can’t do without them. You can come close to breaking the bank with one trip! The solution is simple: Clip as many coupons as possible. These kinds of coupons are popular in magazines both in print and online. Likewise, it can be expensive to maintain your current hair cut and color. Look for deals and coupons with those things as well, switching salons if necessary.

The bottom line: Couponing for groceries will save you plenty, but you’re missing out if that’s the only thing you clip coupons for. Look for these other great deals, and you’ll be amazed at what you save!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

To My Friends Elder Holland Book Review

If you love Elder Holland
  and who doesn't?! 
then you are going to love his newest book To My Friends: Messages of Counsel and Comfort. 

LDS, Elder Holland, To My Friends, General Conference

This book is a compilation of some of his best talks that have been given in General Conference and devotionals over approximately the last 20 years.  Many of these talks I have read or listened to before, but they are a reminder of how powerful they were and still are!

One of my favorite things about Elder Holland's talks is the passion you can feel in his words.  He truly believes every word he says and it's almost tangible.  There is so much emotion put into these words - but always with love and earnest.  

And I love his humor.  Elder Holland is great at making comparisons and adding little humorous comments to keep his talks from being too overwhelming.  For example, in his talk from a BYU devotional in 2009 entitled "Remember Lot's Wife" he says, "Now as a passing comment, I don't know whether Lot's wife, like Miniver, was a drinker, but if she was, she certainly ended up with plenty of salt for her pretzels."  Haha, I love that!

LDS, Elder Holland, To My Friends, General Conference


He's also great about adding in dialogue that may have happened in the scriptures to make it more real.  One of my favorite examples of this is in the talk "The Laborers in the Vineyard" given in General Conference in April 2012.  I remember this talk very well because I too thought this story was unfair for the laborers who worked all day.  Why were they paid the same?  But he gives you an amazing perspective of the Master of the vineyard and Elder Holland explains in a conversational way what the Master may have said and helps us realize that we should not be jealous when others are blessed.  Such a powerful talk.

I've been using this book with my scripture study over the last few weeks and I have loved it!  I looked forward to scripture study every day because I couldn't wait to read another Elder Holland talk.  His talks are motivating, powerful, and completely applicable to everyone.  Even talks that I thought, oh this probably won't apply to me, I don't really struggle with that.  Wrong.  He makes everything applicable to everyone!

To My Friends is a great book to have on your shelf at home.  It's great for studying, sharing with family members and friends, and as a reference for your lessons and talks.

You can find To My Friends: Messages of Counsel and Comfort at Deseret Book.

Spring LDS General Conference GIVEAWAY!

Spring General Conference Giveaway - $400+ in Prizes

It's spring time which means General Conference will be here before we know it. Seventeen LDS Bloggers are joining me to share a few of our favorite things. We are so excited to be giving away over $400 in prizes. It's been a treat to work with so many talented women to spoil our readers with products that strengthen the family and make our lives a little easier, too.

We as bloggers are so thankful for you - our readers! Thank you for your encouragement, comments, and time that you take out of your busy day to check in with us. We appreciate how you #sharethegood with us and hopefully we can share some with you as well!

Meet the bloggers who are taking part in this giveaway:

LDS Bloggers

Now for the giveaway! If you are anything like me, your wish list for Deseret Book is a mile long! We are excited to send two of you some fun money to spend there. We hope you love the recipes from the Six Sisters as much as we do and that Nicole Carpenter's 5-minute messages will make family devotional more manageable! From bulking up your food storage with Thrive to the cutest projects by Fizzy Pops - there are so many wonderful prizes. Check them out and ENTER TO WIN below! There are TWO rafflecopters so be sure to enter each one!

Spring General Conference Giveaway - Over $400 in Prizes!
Prize Package #1
$85 Gift Card to Deseret Book
$50 Gift Card to Sweet Salt Clothing
Fizzy Pops Young Women Zipper Pull Kit ($50 value) with

Spring General Conference Giveaway - Over $400 in Prizes!
Prize Package #2
$85 Gift Card to Deseret Book
$75 value Food Storage Package from Thrive
$50 Gift Card to Sego Lily Soap

The winner will be announced and e-mailed April 2.

We've compiled a few of our favorite General Conference Activities, Recipes, and Ideas. Comment with your favorite traditions or add a link below!


LDS General Conference Activities and Ideas



Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Awesome Mormon Bloggers You Should Know

Sometimes I mention things about being a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon) and I review books for Deseret Book, many of which are LDS topics, so I'm sure most of you know that I'm a Mormon.  Whether you are a Mormon or not, many people like to read Mormon blogs. So if you're one of those people, here are 18 other Mormon Bloggers you should check out!


Looking for some new blogs to follow? These are some of the best.

Awesome Mormon Bloggers You Should Know



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My mission is BrittanyBullen.com is to help my readers discover the incredible potential within them. I love musicals, marketing, writing, the occasional DIY project and talking about how much better life is since I joined the LDS church. I started the International Bloggers' Association to create a community of supportive bloggers who are dedicated to helping each other succeed.

Check out these posts:







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We are very close sisters (in heart, not distance) who blog together on all things creative and on family. We love to create recipes, craft projects, and DIY. We also do some book reviews because we both love to read. We have some family members with Celiac Disease, so expect us to throw in some gluten free cooking along the way.


We love to get our inspiration for our projects from our real life so that not only can we use what we're creating, but so our readers can use the project as well. You won't find anything too fancy on our blog because we are not fancy people.



We are moms like many of you. We enjoy spending time with our families, traveling and sitting on the beach. (One of us actually lives by the beach. The other, not so much.) We get together as much as we can, but it isn't often enough, so we talk on the phone almost daily. We love blogging and hope you will swing by our blog and check it out.



Check out a few of their posts:






Candice Schenk, She's Crafty
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I'm a crafty girl who is a wife, mother, daughter of our Heavenly Father, photographer, wanna be interior decorator, party thrower, Young Women leader, organizer, power tool enthusiast, craft supply hoarder, and lover of all things creative. My little part of the blog world reflects all of these things.


Check out a few of her posts:






Stephanie Loiaza, Six Sisters Stuff

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We are six biological sisters who started our blog to stay in touch with each other. As it has grown, we decided to just focus on quick and simple family recipes, easy DIYS, fun activities for families, and home projects.

Check out a few of their posts:







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The goal of A Prioritized Marriage is to inspire other couples to put their marriage first and make an effort every day to build up their relationship with each other, no matter what life brings. There is always room for growth and learning in your relationship, no matter how long you've been together. If you want a strong marriage, you have to work at it continuously. You have to be willing to set aside your pride and look for ways that you can improve in your role as a spouse and make your marriage better. It is important to not only set goals that you can work toward as a couple, but also to look at what you can do personally to help your marriage be amazing!


The goal of A Prioritized Marriage is not to portray what a perfect marriage should look like, because marriage relationships aren't perfect and no two marriages are the same. The posts that you find here will always be a transparent and honest portrayal of a real married relationship that is constantly growing and evolving. The purpose of this blog is not to say what you should or shouldn't be doing in order to have a happy and successful marriage. The purpose of this blog is to encourage couples to look at their own marriages, find areas where there is room for improvement, and set goals to help their marriage relationship reach its full potential!



A Prioritized Marriage is written for everyone. Whether you're still single and preparing for a future relationship, dating someone and starting to think about marriage, engaged and planning for a future together, or married for any length of time, you can choose to change the future of your marriage relationship now and apply these posts to your life.


Check out a few of her posts:







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I first found my love for sewing when I had my first daughter 7 years ago. Since then, all 3 of my girls and my little boy have been my inspiration for everything I do. Right now, I love to make and sew rag quilts, car seat tents, baby blanket, rag quilt patterns, car seat tent patterns, ruffled curtains. Many times you can find me in my sewing room sewing away at customer orders, but when I am not doing that I enjoy blogging. You can find sewing, home decor, craft, and DIY tutorials on my blog along with updates to shop, A Vision to Remember.

I hope you find your "Vision to Remember" Inspiration here on my blog or in my shop.

Check out a few of her posts:






Camille Walker, My Mommy Style


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My Mommy Style is written by three women that also happen to be family! Camille and Janae are sisters and Melissa is their cousin. We wanted to create a space online that we could share the beauty of motherhood and family life. We believe there is not just ONE right way to be a Mother and we enjoy sharing those different "styles" to our readers in hopes that they can find something that will influence them in a positive way. It is so easy to compare one's self to others and we hope to encourage women to be the best Mom that they are no matter the differences.


We share parenting tips, recipes, travel, activities, inspiring stories, fashion, health, decor, holiday fun, fitness, DIY, and learning activities for children.


Check out a few of their posts:






Andie Thueson, Maybe I Will

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I know from experience how hard it can be to stay fit and healthy while raising children or meeting the demands of a career! My aim is to make fitness and healthy eating simple and fun! Just because you need to lose some weight or get in shape doesn't mean it has to be this exhausting chore! I firmly believe that fitness and health is NOT a destination!! It’s a way of life! So follow along on my day to day journey as I am navigating motherhood, my waistline, AND my sanity! So what can you expect?!?! …You can expect; Kick Boot-ay workouts, drool worthy healthy recipes, and AWESOME Tips to help you become a more Positive, Fit and Healthy Person! – Plus lots of fun!

Check out a few of her posts:






Heidi Hillman, A Lively Hope

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I'm Heidi: a maker, mama, dreamer and planner. A Lively Hope is a place for me to share all the things I love. I tell the story of our family, including my handsome engineering genius husband and our three miracle children (one biological girl and two adopted boys). Here you'll find everything from books and homeschooling to home improvement projects and goals. I love to scripture journal, create art and make things. I share thoughts on faith, parenting and taking time to develop our talents. I love to share free printables and ideas to help your busy family. I hope I can offer the inspiration and encouragement you need.

Check out a few of her posts:






Aubrey Zaruba, AubreyZaruba.com

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I'm a working girl dreaming about someday being a stay at home something. Like my life, my blog is about a little bit of everything. I blog about fashion, running, recipes, travel, happenings, crafts, and everything in between. I love connecting with others, and I want everyone to be my best friend.

Check out a few of her posts:






Danielle Davis, Today's The Best Day

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A website dedicated to celebrating the journey of motherhood and enhancing every mom's parenting experience. Danielle, the owner and creator of Today's The Best Day, was told at a young age that she probably would not have the opportunity to become a mom - and her dreams were shattered. But after several years of fertility treatments and countless prayers - she learned that miracles DO happen! With a desire to better the lives of women everywhere, Danielle created this website to be a place where women can come together to strive to make EVERY day, the BEST day for themselves, their marriages and their families.

Check out a few of her posts:






Meredith Ethington, Perfection Pending

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I’m a mother of 3 writing about my quest to stop trying to be the perfect mother, and just be the mother I was always meant to be. I love encouraging other moms to do the same! I like to write about all the “perfect” and not-so-perfect moments I encounter everyday raising my three kids. I also occasionally share recipes that my kids will actually eat, so that maybe you can try them out on your kids too. Just call me your test kitchen.

Check out a few of her posts:






Staci Potter, The Potters' Place

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The Potters-Place is a blog where you will find a creative place to show what we are creating, making, DIY-ing, and doing at our place. We hope to help inspire you to create a happy, simple home! We sale a monthly box called the Potter Packs. They sale for $20.00 a month and that includes shipping. We like to keep it a secret but we can tell you this, each pack contains a printable, a yummy treat, seasonal items, a craft, cute things to wear and other fabulous items we know you will love.

Check out a few of her posts:






Mandy Beyster, Sugarbee Crafts

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Hi! I'm Mandy and I blog at www.SugarBeeCrafts.com, where you'll find all sorts of awesomeness. If I can do a project, you can too, and I love to show you how with step-by-step tutorials. Crafts, DIY, sewing, recipes, and so much more. I have 4 kiddos and enjoy living in the midwest, where we are currently building our own home (the ultimate DIY!!)


Check out a few of her posts:








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Pebbles & Piggytails is all about inspiring families to make life meaningful! Whether it's making a recipe or craft together, or just finding time together I believe in making moments count. I learned this first-hand when I was in a auto-pedestrian accident while 6 months pregnant in 2007. Although the driver was intoxicated, we miraculously survived and learned how precious life can be. I believe there is no way to have a perfect family, but that you can enjoy being together no matter how you live. I'm just a freckled-face, down-to-earth girl who loves simple but meaningful things. My blog is full of yummies and crafts to make as well as DIY projects and fun family activities. I also blog about funny parenting stories, finding joy, and all the lessons learned along the way. Come make your day meaningful!


Read some of her posts:







Katelyn Fagan at What's Up Fagans?

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What's up Fagans? is a blog about Katelyn Fagan and her family's adventure in this awesome, totally hard thing called life. They keep things real, honest, practical, and simple. At What's up Fagans? you'll find posts that are helpful to your soul, your home, your health, your children, and your spouse. The Fagans are a simple, imperfect, frugal, faithful lot, who want to help you find balance, happiness, love, beauty, and joy in your everyday life.


Check out a few of her posts:







Elizabeth Lund at Balm to My Soul

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I’m Elizabeth! I am a wife, mother, blogger, speaker and therapist. The focus of Balm to My Soul is to uplift, inspire and empower men and women. I love to blog about what I do, so you will find food (yum!), DiY projects, life lessons, articles on well-being, faith (I'm a Mormon!), and other great resources. So, come on over. Stay a while. Share your story with me! Maybe we can learn something together.


Check out her posts:







Camille Gillham, Chicken Scratch n Sniff

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Our mission at Chicken Scratch n Sniff is to strengthen the individual, teacher, and family. Find LDS lesson helps (Primary and Relief Society), scripture studies and journals, family time activities, and more!


Check out a few of her posts:






That's all, folks!

I hope you've found some new people to meet in this list. I know I did!

Monday, March 16, 2015

OurPact: A tool for every parent

This is a sponsored guest post written by OurPact.  But I support this company which is why I wanted to share this great product with you!


Guest Post by: Dr. Sarah M Coyne


I was chatting with my friend recently about some trouble she was having with her teenage son. He 
recently got a smartphone and wants to be on it all the time. He and his girlfriend talk or text almost all the time, and she felt that the phone really interfered with family time. Even though she tried to set rules or would try to take the phone away, her son was always “sneaking” media time, to get on the 
Internet, play games, or to talk to his girlfriend. This happened during family dinner, church, school, the middle of the night, and more. She came to me at her wits end.

internet filter, ourpact, family, phones, phone management

Adolescence can be a difficult time as teens are pushing boundaries and wanting more independence 
from parents. Developing this sense of independence (or autonomy) is developmentally appropriate and a good thing. This encompasses many domains, but also includes media use. After all, in just a few years, most adolescents will leave the home and be completely independent to make their own decisions (for good and for bad).


However, many adolescents are simply not ready for the responsibility of owning a phone with 
unfettered access to the internet. This is a huge responsibility, and research shows that adolescents will do better with learning this responsibility with appropriate boundaries and monitoring from parents.

That is why I recommend that all parents install some type of Internet filter or phone management 
system, such as OurPact



I particularly like OurPact as it allows parents complete flexibility when 
monitoring their child’s phone and Internet use. Parents have the option to block certain categories of 
websites (e.g. pornography) or any App. They also have the option to set certain times of the day where their child can use the Internet or Apps. I encourage parents to work with their teens to set a schedule when teens can use certain features on their phones, which may include turning it off during family during, nighttime, school hours, and more. OurPact is easy to use and free, and in my professional opinion, it will help manage some of the difficulties that parents see when dealing with their teen’s media use.


Now back to my friend I mentioned at the beginning of the story. All of her problems with her teen are not going to be fixed by downloading an App. I wish it were that easy. Likely, the problems with their relationship will take a lot of communication and a lot of work. However, OurPact can be viewed as one tool that she could use to manage some of the media problems she is experiencing with her son.


You can download OurPact on itunes for FREE!