Anyone feeling a little stressed out right about now? Only a few more weeks until Christmas and it is crunch time for gift shopping. We are looking at that time of the year when most of us break our budgets because we needed that last-minute gift.
Sure, buying ahead is great, but we don’t always know what to gift that certain someone and so we do what we humans do best, procrastinate!
YIKES! It is December 23rd and we need a gift for grandma…or our husband…or our neighbor that got us something and we didn’t get her anything. Sound familiar? What to do? What to do?
One option would be to crawl under a rock until Christmas is over; but that won’t solve anything.
All jokes aside, you’ve caught my gift giving guide early enough that there is still time to shop and leave those last-minute gifts as things of the past. If we plan ahead, we can keep away from the mall crowds, keep to our budget and keep our sanity.
Looking for some Holiday art projects to keep your kids busy? Unfortunately yucky weather awaits us. During this time most kids love to run wild all over the house. Therefore it is nice to have a project or two up your sleeve to keep them occupied. Then maybe after being cooped up, they will sit still for a while!
Fortunately there are many ways to entertain your kids that don’t involve screen time. Here are a few learning art projects I tried with my two-year old and four-year old this year!
The supply list is short…All you need is construction paper, markers and glue. (I love Target’s Up and Up brand for all of these). Cheap and easy!!
Nonetheless, my favorite kid art projects incorporate learning. (I was a teacher for 13 years.) These three projects help teach letters, shapes and name recognition. Not to mention, your kids will have fun, fun, fun!!
Just follow these instructions below and you are good to go!! After completing, hang them up as Holiday decorations.
Looking for free things to do this Christmas/Holiday Season? The Holidays are such a wonderful time to show family you care!
Let’s be honest though…The Holidays can be super expensive too. Nonetheless, there are many fun activities for families that are low-cost or free. So even if you are on a budget, you can get into the Christmas spirit too!
Think about it this way…Spending time with your kiddos is way better than any fleeting toy of the moment that will be irrelevant the next year. The memories you make will last a lifetime, even after the toys have been donated. Furthermore, one thing you will always remember are those fun family Christmas traditions. (Even if they are frugal traditions.)
Christmas activities will hold a spot in your hearts for years to come…And the great news is these activities do not have to cut into your budget!
So I’ve done all the work for you and compiled a list of amazing family friendly activities that are very low-cost or free. Please use my list and enjoy!! Give your kids a toy or two, but give them the gift of time as well! Merry Christmas everyone!
FREE HOLIDAY ACTIVITIES
1. Walk through the mall to view the holiday decor – Have young kids? Bring the stroller & stop at the play area! Many malls go all out and have a lot of awesome picture opportunities as well.
2. Have a Christmas light hunt – Let’s pack up the kids, bring some snacks and hunt for the best Christmas light displays in town. It is always fun to see how all your neighbors light up their yards with pretty decorations. I still remember doing this as a kid in our old, beat up station Wagon! It wasn’t the car we were driving or that there were four kids loudly singing carols (I’m sure my parents loved that part), but the fact that we were together as a family!
Target is one of my absolute favorite stores! Those bullseye red circles send me into a shopping trans every time! Target not only has great products but the prices are great too!!
I actually do most of my grocery shopping at Super Target! You can’t beat the prices and quality….and with coupon stacking and gift card deals, savings are a cinch! Let’s not forget about my favorite app, Target Cartwheel!
The Cartwheel app. can save you tons of money! Most Target brands are always included in the app. If you check before you shop, you can score awesome deals on many other name brands products as well! Pair this with manufacturer’s coupons and Target’s coupons and you just got three discounts on one item! Yes, you read that correctly, three discounts!! (Four if you use Ibotta)
The best news is you can scan your own phone Cartwheel app at the self checkout! Just use the hand-held scanner! I love that!!
What is a split meal? Do you often cook dinners on a budget? If so, my split-meat meal idea is perfect for you! Make your spaghetti and tacos this week, using only one package of meat!
I started my split meals when my husband was buying our ground turkey from Costco. The packages of meat were bigger, so I would make two meals out of one meat pack! My two go-to meals for splitting are spaghetti and tacos! (Although you could do Chili and add extra veggies)
So my split meal is just that! I split the meat and drum up two meals with one meat package!
After a while I started doing this with the regular sized packs of meat, be it ground turkey or ground beef. I then realized I didn’t mind less meat in my spaghetti sauce and no one else in my family seemed to mind either.(Note: I’m feeding two adults and two children, ages four and two. If you have teenagers you may need the Costco size meat packs.)
So brown up the meat, split it into two pans and make your spaghetti sauce (I like to use Garden Combo Market Pantry Sauce) with half and taco meat with the other half. Serve up the spaghetti that evening and the next night, devour your delectable tacos!!
We love deals at iheartfrugal and Black Friday means you can score many, many great deals; however, many people do not realize, most of these deals, with the exception of door busters, can be purchased online.
One of my favorite sites for this is Target.com! Why? Because I have a REDcard and I get 5% off all of my purchases, even sales! I also get free shipping on everything on the site, although, Target has free standard shipping and free returns until December 21st (some exclusions) right now as one of its promotions!
My Black Friday Scores!
I got a Graco booster seat for $29.20 and a nice pair of Boy’s Cat & Jack boots for $18!! I also scored two cute flannel shirts to use for our Christmas cards for $6.99 each! I’m hoping you find many great deals on Black Friday and all weekend long!!
Here are some other great Target Promotions: ( sale running 11/27-12/3)
Cooking a turkey this year? Hosting your first Turkey Day dinner? You are bound to wind up with leftovers.
I am a turkey lover! Some are not! However, we are about to convert you with some of our leftover ideas here at iheartfrugal!
Need a few ideas so that yummy, juicy bird does not go to waste? Here at iheartfrugal we believe in using as much of the food as possible, in order to continue with our frugal living habits, which saves you money!!!
Meals for days. Read on….
Of course, no one can discount a yummy turkey sandwich. Load up your favorite bread (I love multi-grain), add a little mayo, tomato, lettuce and cheese (provolone? Yes, please!) and you’ve got lunch or dinner that is bound to be a winner!
Soup! Now that the weather is getting colder, everyone loves to warm up with a yummy bowl of soup. Use your bird to replace the meat in any chicken soup recipe or use the turkey bone to make your own broth and enjoy in any recipe that calls for broth!
Turkey pot pie! Sick of the regular old chicken pot pie? Why not use turkey? Make a basic dough or Pillsbury biscuits, add some veggies and cream of chicken soup and bake them up! I’m getting hungry just thinking about it!
Cold turkey salad – Add your turkey to lettuce, dried cranberries, walnuts, blue or feta cheese! Top with a little raspberry vinaigrette dressing and you will have a dish even the kids will love! (Well, my oldest son doesn’t like dressing on anything!lol)
Hot Turkey salad – Yum! This is a recipe from Great-Grandma! Thanks for sharing, Mom! Recipe: Add 3 Cups diced turkey, 1 cup thinly slice celery, 1 cup shredded cheese, 1/4 cup chopped black olives, 1 tablespoon chopped onion, 1 teaspoon salt, 2/3 cup Miracle Whip and stir! Sprinkle with shredded cheese and top with crushed potato chips.
Give some leftovers to your guests – What is better than the gift of giving during the holiday season. Buy some freezer bags and send your guests home with a little leftovers of their own! They will leave happy and you will cut down on wasted food! A win, win!
Whatever it is you do with your Turkey, this year, I’m wishing you a joyful, peaceful Holiday Season with good food, good family and good friends and love in your hearts! Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!
This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission and be very thankful!
In today’s world, who doesn’t shop online? According to a UPS survey, 51% of all shopping is done online. It is super easy to browse and shop from the comfort of your own couch. However, it is always best to stick to your budget and too much shopping can hinder your progress. Hence it is essential to use Ebates when you put that holiday gift in your online basket since you will earn money back on your purchase. Ebates is a wonderful way to start making money on all the gifts you buy for your family and friends (or yourself) and I highly recommend using this site.
I’ve used Ebates for years! I use Ebates throughout the year, but it definitely helps ease the burden of all the money spent during the Holiday Season!
**This post contains affiliate links! Please feel free to click or continue on to this yummy recipe and enjoy!!
Are you on a budget this Thanksgiving? Are you stressed out about the strains of hosting? There is so much thought and effort that goes into hosting Thanksgiving dinner at your house. The menu, the cleaning, and lets not forget the food budget! This is enough to give a busy mom and head ache! Ouch!
One way to save money (think less stress) this Thanksgiving is to use Stove Top Stuffing as your main side dish! I have used this recipe for a few years and my guests raved about it!
This recipe is a quick, easy way to spruce up that Stove Top and save money because you are using Stove Top! Yet, you will still have a dish that guest will love!
I’m wishing all of you the best this Holiday Season and I’m hoping my recipe will help lighten the cooking burden and financial burden hosting Thanksgiving can bring! Let’s try this and see how many compliments you get this year!!