Posts tagged with "Savings Made Sweet"

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Clothing Your Family on a Budget

I recently wrote an article for the Gulf Coast Family Magazine on Clothing Your Family on a Budget. I know that searching for clothing deals can sometimes be a challenge especially when you are on a tight budget. I hope that some of these tips will be helpful to you! 

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I don’t know about you, but I find that it can be a challenge sometimes trying to find clothing deals for the entire family!

Here are some helpful tips and ideas that I hope will help you when bargain shopping for clothes:

Shop clearance sales. I don’t know about you, but the first place that I head when entering the store is the clearance section. I find that many stores will often have sales which allow you to take an additional percentage off of the already reduced sale price. In this case, you can usually end up with some really sweet deals!

Buy sizes ahead when possible. For example, last year, Children’s Place had an amazing online deal on boy’s shirts and shorts. After coupon codes and free shipping, I ended up with 3 pairs of shorts and 3 shirts shipped to my front door for $12! This summer when the weather turned warm and I needed larger sizes for my little boy, I did not have to make a trip to the mall and fight the crowds for summer clothes. I just had to pull them out of the closet since I had shopped ahead!

Take advantage of online shopping when possible. Many stores offer the option to shop online. On top of that, you can often find coupon codes and shipping discounts that allow you to shop right from the convenience of your own home. When you are a busy parent and have a crazy schedule, online shopping can quickly become your best friend!

Sign up for promotional offers and emails to your favorite stores. I find that signing up for these offers allows me to know first-hand when there are upcoming sales. I also find that many stores will send out money-saving coupons and offers to their email subscribers. For example, did you know that if you sign up for email offers from Kohl’s, they will email you a coupon for $5 off of your next purchase?

Shop Consignment Stores and Yard Sales. I love to shop yard sales and consignment stores whenever possible as it allows me to find brand name items for every member of the family at a great price. Many times I will find items that are brand new with the tags still attached! Last year I found a pair of Women’s brand name boots at a yard sale with the tags still attached. The retail price on the boots was $100, but I paid $2 for them!

One of the other things that I love about consignment stores is the fact that you can take your gently worn clothes and receive store credit or even cash for them. Consignment stores like Once Upon A Child are great because I can take my sons outgrown and gently worn clothes and toys and get a store credit or cash to use towards items that he needs at that time.

Host a clothing swap. Clothing swaps are not only a fun activity for the entire family, but it also allows you to get gently used clothing items. You can host a clothing swap with some friends from church or school and you will be amazed at the items you can add to your entire family’s wardrobe!

The next time that you need to need to go shopping for new clothes, take advantage of some of these budget-friendly tips!

Dining Out On a Budget-It Can Be Done!

Below you will find an article that I recently wrote for the Gulf Coast Family Magazine regarding Dining Out on a Budget. With the holidays approaching, I know that many of us are looking for ways to pinch every single penny! 🙂

Don’t forget to check out my monthly article in the Savings Made Sweet Column of this wonderful magazine! If you are a local reader, you can pick this magazine up at any CVS, Chick Fil A or other local businesses! Others can check out the online version HERE.

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I don’t know about you, but my family and I love to dine out whenever our budget allows. I love the fact that not only do I get the night off from cooking, but I also get out of doing the dishes for the night!

Dining out with your family can be a fun and frugal experience when you know how to look for special offers and discounts. Here are some tips that will help you to not break the bank when dining out.

First of all, I firmly believe that you should plan ahead! Don’t just get into the car and ask everyone where they want to eat. Planning ahead let’s you to take a look at the Restaurant menu online before-hand and to see what kind of prices that they offer.

Secondly, see if the restaurant that you will be dining at has any type of online printable offers. Many times, restaurants will offer coupons for a FREE Appetizer or Dessert, or maybe for Buy One Get One Free Entrees! Just sign up to receive emails from your favorite restaurants, and very quickly your inbox will be filled with money-saving offers! Some of my favorite restaurants that frequently send out coupons and money-saving offers include: Smokey Bones, T.G.I.Friday’s, Chilis, Bob Evans and Bahama Breeze.

Don’t forget to check local magazines such as this one for money-saving coupons. And, don’t throw away those coupons that you receive in your mailbox! There may actually be some great money-saving offers in those ads!

Head over to Facebook to see what kind of offers your favorite restaurants are promoting. I find that Facebook is really a nice way to get promotional offers and coupons for everything from Free desserts and entrees to Free breakfasts and more! It pays to be a fan of your favorite restaurants on Facebook as they update you when a new offer is available.

Take advantage of the Kids Eat Free promotional offers that are available. This alone can be a big savings off of your bill, especially if you have several children!

Sign up for the birthday club at your favorite restaurant and get a Free meal or dessert on your birthday! You will be surprised at how many restaurants have a birthday club, and it really does pay off to sign up for them!

Have you ever thought about sharing a meal with your child or spouse when you are dining out? The entrée portion sizes offered at many restaurants are usually enough for 2 people, and, if bread and salad are included that makes for a very nice and satisfying meal! My husband and I do this quite frequently and it really does help with our budget.

Lastly, instead of ordering soda or tea with your meal what about ordering good old fashioned water? Soft Drinks can really add to the price of what you thought was going to be a frugal meal.

So, the next time that you plan to dine out with the family, follow some of these frugal tips!