No Child Left Behind

Frisco Fast Pac

Last week my beautiful Friend Karen asked if we would be interested in helping our local shelter provide food for children who experience hunger on a regular basis in our community. Especially during the summer when school is not in session and these children aren’t getting regular meals provided. Frisco FastPacs is the name and I’m sure your local family shelter has something similar.  It was a great activity for our kiddos to participate in, and an awesome way to give back to our community.  If your looking for something to do with your kiddos this summer take some of your shopping savings and pay it forward!

Birthday Freebies

20140507-115737.jpg Retailers

ACE Hardware: Sign up for ACE Rewards and get a $5 off coupon on your birthday.

American Eagle Outfitters: Sign up for AERewards and get 15% off during your birthday month.

Aveda: Become a member of Aveda.com and get a free gift every year on your birthday.

Bare Minerals: Become a Friends and Benefits member and get a gift customized to your personal profile on your birthday.

CVS: Register for a CVS ExtraCare Card and get $3 in ExtraCare Bucks every year on your birthday.

Disney: Register for Disney Movie Rewards and you’ll receive a credit for a free Blu-ray movie on your birthday.

DSW: Join DSW’s rewards program and receive a $5 gift certificate on your birthday.

Old Navy: Sign up for Old Navy’s email newsletters and you’ll receive a free surprise on your birthday.

Sephora: Sign up for Beauty Insiders and receive a complimentary gift during your birthday month.

Victoria’s Secret: Sign up for their mailing list and receive a coupon for $10 off a purchase of $10 or more on your birthday.

Restaurants, Fast Food, Ice Cream and Coffee

Baskin Robbins will send you a coupon for a free scoop of ice cream on your birthday when you join the Baskin Robbins Birthday Club.

Marble Slab Sign up for Marble Mail and receive exclusive offers, birthday surprises and more. Kids under age 13 can join the Marble Slab Kids Club and get a free ice cream cone on their birthday.

When you register a Starbucks card, they will send you a free drink or food reward on your birthday!

If you have a child ages 2-10, sign them up for Geoffrey’s Birthday Club at Toys R Us. They will receive a birthday card and surprise gift from Geoffrey.

Enjoy a free sub on your birthday when you join the Firehouse Subs Birthday Club here. Or, just show an I.D. with your birth date on your birthday and you’ll get a FREE medium celebratory sub.

Join the Fudds Club to get the latest news and perks from Fuddruckers – Like a special gift for joining, plus a birthday treat and a surprise on your anniversary date!

Join the So Connected club at Ruby Tuesday’s and you’ll get an email for a free burger on your birthday.

Join Jason’s Deli’s email list and you’ll receive a $5 gift card on your birthday.

Subscribe to IHOP’s email list to receive a free meal on your birthday. You will also receive a free meal just for signing up.

Keep your Chick-fil-A Email Insiders information up to date for exclusive promotions to your inbox.

Abuelo’s: Join their eClub and receive a free gift for signing up, plus gifts on your birthday and anniversary.

Applebee’s: Sign up to receive their email updates and you’ll get a dessert shooter on your birthday.

Atlanta Bread Company: Join the Atlanta Bread Company VIP eCLub and you’ll get a free cookie on your birthday.

Baker’s Square Restaurant & Pies: Sign up for their email newsletters and you’ll receive a coupon for a free entrée right away, plus a free slice of pie on your birthday.

Ben & Jerry’s: Become a Chunk Spelunker and you’ll get a free scoop of ice cream on your birthday.

Bennigan’s: Become a Bennigan’s eClub member and receive a free dessert and buy one, get one entrée on your birthday.

Black Angus Steakhouse: Join their Prime Club and receive a free steak dinner (with purchase of a second entrée) on your first birthday as a member.

Brio Tuscan Grille: Sign up for Posta Toscana at Brio Tuscan Grille and you’ll receive a coupon for free food on your birthday.

Buca di Beppo: Register for their eClub updates and receive a free brownie on your birthday and a free dessert on your anniversary.

Captain D’s Seafood Kitchen: Become a Captain D’s Seafood Restaurant Insider and receive a free fish or chicken dinner for joining, plus more freebies on your birthday.

Charlie Brown’s Steakhouse: Join their Handshake Club and receive a free gift on your birthday.

Chili’s: Sign up for their email list and get a free order of chips and salsa or guacamole or queso just for joining, plus a brownie sundae on your birthday.

Cold Stone Creamery: Join their club to receive a coupon for free ice cream on your birthday.

Dairy Queen: Join their fan club and receive a free Blizzard on your birthday.

Del Taco: Join their Raving Fan eClub and receive a free premium shake on your birthday, plus two free Grilled Chicken Tacos just for signing up.

Denny’s: Join their rewards club to receive a free Grand Slam on your birthday (includes two eggs, two slices of bacon, two sausage links and two pancakes).

Don Pablo’s: Join their Hab Club and receive a free $10 gift card on your birthday.

Famous Dave’s: Join the Be a P.I.G. (Pretty Important Guest) Club and receive something free on your birthday.

Flat Top Stir-Fry Grill: Join their eClub and get a free stir-fry dish on your birthday.

Friendly’s: Join their BFF Club and get a free three-scoop sundae just for enrolling, as well as free birthday offers for your entire family.

Fuddruckers: Join the Fudd Club and get a free treat on your birthday.

Genghis Grill: Become a member of the Khan’s Club and get a free birthday stir-fry bowl.

Gold Star Chili: Join their eClub for free surprises on your birthday.

Great American Cookies: Join their Cookie-Mail Club for free birthday surprises.

Houlihan’s: Join their email club and get a free appetizer for joining, plus a free entrée on your birthday.

IHOP: Join their Pancake Revolution and receive a free meal for signing up, on your birthday and on the one-year anniversary of joining.

Johnny Rocket’s: Join the Johnny Rocket eClub and receive a free hamburger on your birthday.

Krispy Kreme: Join the Friends of Krispy Kreme eClub and get a free doughnut and coffee on your birthday.

Menchie’s: Join the mySmileage rewards program and recieve a $5 credit towards frozen yogurt on your birthday.

Moe’s Southwest Grill: Join their eClub and receive a free gift on your birthday.

Outback Steakhouse: Join their rewards program and receive a free dessert on your birthday.

P.F. Chang’s: Sign up for their email updates and get a free dessert on your birthday.

Qdoba Mexican Grill: Sign up for their rewards program and receive a free chips & salsa or a free regular drink for registering, plus a free gift on your birthday.

Red Lobster: Join their rewards club and get a free gift on your birthday.

Red Robin: Join their eClub and get a free burger with bottomless fries on your birthday.

Rita’s Ice: Join their birthday club for a free treat on your birthday.

Schlotzsky’s: Join their eClub to get a free small sandwich on your birthday.

Sonic Drive-In: Sign up to become a Sonic Cruisers member and you’ll receive a free surprise on your birthday.

Spaghetti Warehouse: Join the Warehouse Club and get a free appetizer for signing up, plus a complimentary meal on your birthday.

Starbucks: Join their rewards club for a free drink on your birthday.

Taco Cabana: Become a TC Fanatic and get a free fajita taco for joining, plus a free TC Fanatics flauta plate on your birthday.

TCBY: Sign up for the myTCBY eclub and recieve a free small yogurt on your birthday.

UNO Chicago Grill: Join their rewards program and get a free meal on your birthday.

Freebies for kids

Barnes & Noble: Sign up for their Kids’ Club and your child can receive a cupcake on their birthday.

Bashas’: Register your child in their Birthday Club and they’ll receive a free cake every year through age 10.

Bob Evans: Sign your children (12 and under) up for the Bob Evans Birthday Club and the’ll receive free kids’ meals on their birthday.

California Pizza Kitchen: Sign your children (10 and under) up for the CPKids Birthday Club and they’ll receive a free meal during their birthday month.

Chuck E. Cheese’s: Join their email club and receive special offers and freebies for your child’s birthday.

Kmart: Join their Birthday Club and get a $5 gift card for your child’s birthday, plus a birthday gift pack.

Local freebies

Make an account at BirthdayFreebies.com. You can search for freebies at retailers and restaurants in your area by typing in your zip code.

 

 

Video

Frugal DIY Teacher Appreciation Gifts

Next week is Teacher appreciation week at the kiddos schools and we wanted to post a few of our favorites from the past years we’ve done.  It’s always exciting to find cute frugal gift ideas for the those special teachers who shape the minds of our children.  There really are no words to express gratitude for all they do.  So don’t forget to send a note or gift of appreciation to the teachers in your life.

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Magnet Board 3

Homemade Magnet Fabric Bulletin Board

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Color My World Thank You Gift

M&M

M&M Teacher Appreciation gift

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Do you have any you want to share? We would love to hear about them!

DIY Heat Transfer

Put on your seat belt ya’ll… you’re about to see some extreme cuteness!!

Since this was my first time doing this type of project and I wanted to do something fun for valentine’s day. The best thing about this craft is it turned out to be super frugal costing me about $4 dollars per shirt.  Tip…one of my favorite ways to save money on fabric at Joann’s is to dig through the remnant bin. “Remnants” are small pieces of fabric, anywhere from a few inches to up to a yard or so the cool thing about the remnant bin is that everything in there is 50% off. Better still, it’s 50% off  the current price for that type of fabric. I always go there first before purchasing fabric for projects similar to this.  I finished these shirts by sewing the patterns with my sewing machine for additional strength but it’s not necessary.

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Materials
T-Shirt
Pattern you want to use for shirt
Fabric scrap for your patterns
Wonder Under (I use Pellon 805 found in the fabric section of your craft store).
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1.  Fuse Wonder Under to wrong side of fabric using the directions on the product.  You can watch a video by going here if your a visual learner like me:)

2.  Print or draw the pattern and cut out ( If your image includes words or letters make sure to make your image backwards as it will read correctly later when you apply it to your shirt).  Place your design on your shirt shiny side up and then place a piece of cloth on top of it.

3.  Set your iron to “cotton” setting, allow to heat up, and then press firmly and iron your design onto the shirt for about 60 seconds.  Allow the design to cool.20140202-210714.jpg

Easy peasy jungle breezy.

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The best things in life aren’t things….Happy Heart day my friends!

Advent Calendar (Baby Food Jars)

This will be the third year we’ve used this Advent calendar and it’s one of our favorite Christmas pieces.  I had somehow collected a ton of baby food jars and came across a super cute idea on Nap Time Crafters. Each jar holds candy or an activity for each day of Advent.  In our family, we write a Christmas activity on a small piece of paper and place it each jar.  Activities range from decorating the Christmas tree and Cocoa Cruising (looking at Christmas lights) to helping others in need like adopting an angel or delivering food to the local food pantry…you get the idea.  The whole family looks forward to opening a jar each day to see what type of fun surprise we’ll be doing as a family!   We’ve found that it’s a great addition to our celebration of the Christmas season as we anticipate the coming of our Lord and Savior.

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Materials:
Baby food jars (25)
Assorted Christmas Scrapbook paper
Assorted number decals
Round Heavy Strength Magnets (50)
Hot glue gun
Metal Serving Tray (found mine at Hobby Lobby super cheap!)
Plate holder stand (sturdy enough to hold the tray)
Red tissue paper (enough to fill the inside of the jars)

Trace the top of your baby food jar onto the back of your scrapbook paper.  Once you have 25 traced, cut and hot glue the circles to the top of the lids. Add the assorted number decals to the lids and set them aside to dry.  Next, hot glue one magnet to the bottom of each jar so they will “stick” to the serving tray (Note:  if you find that your jars with magnets are not “sticking” to your serving tray, hot glue a second magnet to the tray itself and allow the magnets to stick together for added support).

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Next, stuff the insides of the jars with the red tissue paper and you’re ready to fill your advent jars with goodies or activities!

Merry Christmas and Happy Crafting!

Pumpkin Halloween String Garland

This was a super fun Halloween craft project, but I’ll have to say it was a bit messy.  We tried our first batch of pumpkins inside and decided to do the other batch outside.  It’s definitely a project for ages 7 and up!  Kinley enjoyed wrapping and is planning on doing more!  I found the idea on Spoonful.com they made Jack Skellington’s  but we are a bunch of wimps over here and made pumpkins instead.

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Orange cotton string

Black felt

Green Pipe Cleaner

Water Balloons

Liquid Fabric Starch (you can find this on the laundry isle next to the spray starch)

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1.  Blow up your water balloons so they are about 4 inches wide and tie off the ends.

2. Cut the orange cotton string into long lengths, about 5 feet long. You can always cut more.

3.  Cut out the eyes, nose, and mouth template and trace them onto the black felt. Cut out the pieces. You will need a pair of eyes, a nose, and a mouth for each pumpkin string ball you wish to make.

4.  Pour liquid starch into a bowl. Place your balloon into the bowl. Dip the ends of your 5 foot white string into the bowl and wrap the string around your balloon, soaking the string in the starch before you wrap. Add more lengths of orange string. Once the balloon resembles a very messy spider web, hang the balloon up to dry. Place newspaper or craft paper under the balloons as they will drip.  (We did our second batch outside).

5.  Cut a piece of string about a foot long and tie one end to the end of the balloon. (You will use this string to hang your balloon so it can dry).

6.  Once all the string balls are dry, pop the balloons and pull them out through a gap in the string.  (Make sure the string is completely dry or the sting will fall apart we waited to pop balloon until the next day) Glue on a pair of eyes, a mouth, and a nose and pipe cleaner for the stem to each string ball. Tie them to a long ribbon, yarn, or string garland, evenly spacing them. Cut off extra string after you have tied them into place.

Frugal Fun

Frugal living doesn’t mean having a life without fun.  In fact, you might be surprised how easy it is to trim your expenses with a little patience and planning.  My family has made a tradition of going to the Texas State fair every year since we moved to the Big D. This year was especially important because we wanted to see the new Big Tex. Depending on the day, you can save some serious cash if you plan it just right.  General admission is $17 and paying for parking costs another $15…this doesn’t include the yummy food and fun games/rides.  For a family of 5, you’re looking at a pretty expensive outing.   Instead of letting go of one of our favorite family traditions, I did a little research and came across some great savings.  Kroger had a can food drive on Wednesday which made admission only $3 for each visitor bringing 3 cans of food for area food banks. We ended up paying only $9 total for our whole family while also helping out a great cause.   We also saved a few bucks in parking and found some great free activities and shows the kiddos loved.  Being frugal does not mean that you can never spend money; it just means that you spend your money wisely instead of blindly. 

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Howdy Folks!

 

 

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