Giving back

great ways to earn money for your school, #tips, #donations, #boxtopsforeducation, #boxtops, #souplabels, #school, #thriftywaystohelp

Great, Easy Ways To Earn Money For Your School!

Now that school has started, we begin to think about helping out our children’s schools.  Unfortunately, although schools really, really deserve our money, most of us don’t have much to donate!  There is hope though!  There are little ways that you can donate to your school that take little effort at all!

1. Box Tops for Education  I am the Box Top coordinator for my child’s school.  If you are not collecting them, you are missing a great opportunity!  Box Tops are on so many products and many of them are things that you already buy!  Especially if you are a couponer.  Chances are high that you have these all through your pantry.  They are simple.  You clip them off and give them to your school.  Simple right?  Just make sure you donate them before they expire!

2. Labels for Education Another great way to donate to your school.  Labels for Education have been around for years!  I remember turning in soup labels as a kid, and that was ages ago ;)!  The only difference between now and then is the portion that you save.  Instead of saving the front of your soup label, there is a portion on the back with the UPC code.  You have to save the UPC code or it is worthless to the school!  I can’t tell you how many I have had to throw away when they are turned in with the Box Tops because the student or parent has cut off the UPC code and hasn’t turned it in!  So sad really!

3. My Coke Rewards Did you know that you can donate your coke rewards points to your child’s school?!  How great is that!  Really, even if you buy coke and don’t usually redeem your points, why not take that extra moment and donate those points to your child’s school?  If your child’s school isn’t registered, it only takes a second to do!

4. Tyson Project A+ I don’t think many people know about this one!  If you ever buy Tyson products you have these.  I have a huge pile of them that I have been collecting that are turned in at the school.  It takes a lot before they can be submitted, but they donate cash to the school, and every little bit helps!

5. Target Take Charge For Education If you have a Target card you can be doing this with no effort whatsoever!  All you have to do is sign up your school and they will donate a portion of your purchases back to your registered school.  Beware that it is a credit card, but many people already have them, so if you are using your Target card, sign up for your kids’ school!

6. Shoparoo This is my new favorite, painless way to donate!  This app is great!  Download it to your phone, they have it for Apple and Android.  All you do (once you register) is take a photo of your receipt and earn points that add up earning money for your school.  Plus if you get people to sign up under you, it makes the size of the donation even larger with bonus points!  We all shop, so why not just take a photo of your receipts and get some money for your school?

So there you have it!  My favorite ways to give back without spending any extra cash!  Spread the news to your school, share the post, but get the word out and get saving for your school!

great ways to earn money for your school, #donations, #tips, #boxtopsforeducation, #boxtops, #souplabels, #school, #thriftywaystohelp

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For every jar of Barilla sauce purchased at any store, Barilla will donate $0.05 to Feeding America’s National Produce Program, which secures one pound of fresh produce on behalf of local food banks. Barilla  is promising it will make a minimum donation of 4.2 million pounds of fresh produce ($150,000) from sales starting since 3/1/14.

HOWEVER the generosity gets better for those in specific store areas, during the period from 4/25/14 to 5/1/2014 for every jar of Barilla sauce purchased at:

  • Giant
  • Martin’s
  • Stop & Shop
  • or Giant Food stores

 Barilla  will match that donation with an additional $0.05 for every jar of Barilla  sauce purchased, to the local Feeding America food bank to secure fresh produce specifically those particular markets. These stores are located in the following states: CT, DC, DE, MA, MD, NH, NJ, NY, PA, RI, VA, WV. Barilla will make a maximum donation of $20,000 to these local Feeding America food banks.

Check out Barilla’s site for tasty, colorful recipes for your family like this one pictured below.

Barilla® Mezzi Rigatoni with Three Cheese Sauce & Green BeansPurchase Barilla pasta sauce at your local store THIS week and GIVE back to your community!!!

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Great way to give back to your kids school is the Box Tops for Education promotion.

  • Be sure to purchase 10 participating items in a single transaction at Albertsons
  • then look for a 25 bonus eBoxTops that will have a code on it.
  • Go to the Box Tops for Education website, log-in and enter your code(s).
  • Your school will get credit for 25 Box Tops (equal to $2.50) and if you turn in your boxtops from the products you buy then they get even more rewards from your purchase.

***Be sure to load any SavingStar e-coupons to your Albertsons preferred card and use it in your transaction

Box Tops for education

    • Cheerios 8.96oz
    • Multi-Grain cheerios 9oz
    • Lucky Charms 11.5oz
    • Cocoa Puffs 11.8oz
    • Golden Grahams 12oz
    • Reese’s Peanut Butter Puffs 13oz

  • Use $0.60/3 Green Giant Seasoned Steamers or Valley Fresh Steamers Frozen Vegetables, exp. 12/7/13 (SS 09/15/13)
  • Or $0.60/3 Green Giant Season Steamers or Valley Fresh Steamers Frozen Vegetables, exp. 10/26/13 (SS 08/04/13)
  • Or $1/3 Green Giant Season Steamers or Valley Fresh Steamers Frozen Vegetables, exp. 10/26/13 (SS 08/04/13 R)
  • Final Price as low as or at $1.55


More of the Albertsons coupon match ups for the other deals

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With the official date of the start of Fall around the corner it is a good time to sort through the unused, unwanted and to just declutter.

Get a head start for the Thanksgiving cleaning and the new stuff of Christmas.

Then there is the haul away of these unwanted items.

The Salvation Army will pick it up for you and loads of items are tax deductible too.

Check to find a drop off location or schedule a Salvation Army pick up

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How to Get out of Debt

5 Steps to Raising Financially Responsible Children

Set goals, work together, give to charities

Dont miss the prior posts

How to Get out of Debt part 1

How to get out of debt part 2

We received some great info from a follower and thought it was wise advice:

Growing up, things were always tight for my family. I knew that certain things could not be afforded, like ballet lessons, and that certain things were substituted for ballet lessons, like soccer at YMCA. But I never truly understood why it was that my parents were so far behind on their bills or why my Dad had to work two jobs just to support our family. I was never taught the true value of a dollar; I was taught that working to make ends meet was the way life was meant to be lived. But this could not be further from the truth. After beginning the process towards becoming a financially responsible adult, I realized that there are many things parents can do to ensure their children have a successful but realistic financial future. Some children will have trust funds and college accounts and their needs will be taken care of. This article is about raising the other kind of children: the kind of children who develop thrifty habits and value frugality and worth over fanciful and flashy.

Saving money involves each and every member of the family, and there are five simple steps you can take today to get your entire family on board your plans of savings and frugality.

1. Clue them in. Let your children know about your financial situation. They do not need to know about every last credit card bill you charged up in college ten years ago and are still paying on, but they should have a general idea of the financial situation and budget. How much is set aside for sports and recreation activities for each child? If the child knows this information, it is her financial decision what sport to participate in, and this builds character and fiscal responsibility.

2. Set a common goal. What is it that your family would like to accomplish? Paying off the last of the debt? Making the final mortgage payment? Taking a family vacation? Decide what financial goal your family is working toward, and create together a visual reminder. It could be a picture cut out from a magazine brochure clipped onto the refrigerator, or a chart showing how much family debt has been paid off so far. A visual reminder toward a common goal helps keep the family (and the wallets) united.

3. Enlist help in saving. There are ways that each family member, from 0-18, can help cutback and increase the family savings. Encourage your children to help clip coupons and match them to sale ads, and to get the appropriate items at the grocery store. Even my 2 ½ year old loves to hold Mommy’s coupons at the store. Older children can be in charge of finding the best deals for family needs online or finding trendy, like-new clothing for themselves at garage and thrift stores. Sons can scour local secondhand stores for their sports equipment like cleats and shin guards. Your husband or wife can be your equal partner, keeping you accountable for extra spending and helping assist your children in their frugal endeavors.

4. Find frugal rewards for reaching individual goals. Money or gifts have long been traditional rewards for a job well done such as a recital or perfect report card. Learning to replace these material rewards with frugal gifts from the heart cuts back on the budget and fills the soul with love and admiration. Use the skills you already have. Can Dad do woodworking? How about a new shelf to hang his son’s sports equipment on after he wins the last game of the season. Daughter get a good report card? How about a homemade gift certificate for a handmade pizza of her choice and a Netflix DVD night with a friend? Frugality is nothing more than creativity with money and goods.
5. Encourage Charity. Even a 2 year old is capable of understanding that once a month she must choose a toy that will be given to a little boy or girl who has no toys. Encourage charity in your children, with their material possessions and their time. A teenager who cannot possibly part with any of their belongings can still volunteer to help coach ballet or soccer an afternoon or two per week. Giving back to others teaches children the cycle of reciprocity and helps them become adults.

Nadia is a young Army wife and mother of two who enjoys shopping and sharing her frugal lifestyle

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How to Get out of Debt


How to get out of debt – a three part series.

I got a couple emails over the last while asking various questions on how we are so Thrifty. Well truthfully its been all Sarah and a learning curve for me. One email in-particular is about how to be thrifty while planning a wedding. We spent about a total of $1800- on our wedding, reception and honeymoon. This included rings, her’s (1/3 ct, she only wanted the 1/4 ct cause it was cheaper and I had to talk her into the larger one) and mine (9 little diamonds in the middle). The cake which a friend made and was the finest cake I had seen. They made it out of rice krispy treats. Partly to pull a prank on me “struggling to cut it” and partly because sheet cakes are cheaper. The cake was about 3-4 separate layers with pillars. It was about 2-3 ft tall. The top being actual cake for us to take home and freeze for the year(for you guys- its some wedding tradition I don’t know much about except it took up room in the freezer, but I did it anyways) The cost of the wedding included nice picture frames with photos of our childhood on each table (bought from the dollar store before we even dated) It included the finger foods, you know the mints, nuts, and chocolates. It included the wedding guest book, the pen and all the foo-foo stuff that comes with the wedding. Sarah’s Aunt was happy to share tablecloths, flowers and wedding decorations to make our church gym into a reception hall.  It included the photographer (Darby- Sarah’s oldest brother, and yes he did a great job). And did I forget anything? Oh yes even the dress! Which we still have hanging in our closet. The honeymoon was at Soldier Mountain. Which is a huge house north of Fairfield Idaho, south west of Sun Valley. We had the master suite. It had a huge California king, a huge hot tub in the room, a large walk-in shower for 2 or more even. The bathroom had a toilet of coarse but it even had a bidet, you know that toilet in reverse that sprays water on your backside, and just makes things worse. And one thing it didn’t have, which as I look back I am glad it didn’t – a TV. We just spent time together, focused on each other. We paid $75 for each night and stayed 2 nights. We went to Sun Valley, walked around with the celebrities and did what ever they do. It was a lot of fun.

Why was it fun you ask? Why didn’t we go to the Bahamas, where I had been a few years back on a free vacation (long story). Why didn’t we go to Mexico, or Italy. Well the reason is we didn’t want to go into our marriage for eternity with debt over our head. Once the excitement wears off and the bills start rolling in, cable, rent or mortgage, utilities, car payments, health care, food, insurance, gas money, etc – then stress hits and puts a strain on the relationship.

We all watch Dr Phill, or Oprah, or those shows. We all see what happens when money is a stress on the relationship. Ever since I was a early teen, I always thought you could live like a king on $30,000 per year. It is true, it just depends on what your view of a “king” is. Is it the gold and the diamonds? Is it the fancy clothes, or those cool shoes that the Sex in the City girls wear, or even the half off mock ups of those shoes? Is it the $5000 or $10,000, or $30,000 on one day, or even a week of vacation that makes the wedding, or makes the relationship?

Sometimes I think we need to take a deep look inside and re-evaluate our pride. Now if you wince at that word, or are having a hard time reading this, then maybe its been awhile since we have had that evaluation.

Being a nurse, I see a lot of seniors. Let’s face it as we get old our health fails. I’m sure you have noticed that cute old couple. Probably in their late 80’s or even 90’s, holding hands, she is probably driving because he wore his body out working. I see them all the time in the hospital. Sure they don’t stay at the bedside through the night because he tells her she better get home before she can’t see to drive at night. Have you ever thought about how they stayed married for 60 or 70 years?

My challenge to our readers is to find one of those couples and ask them… How have you stayed married for so long?

They will tell you that it’s not because they spent a load on a wedding, or on the ring, or because they went to Mexico, or the Bahamas. It’s not because they racked up a huge credit card debt. What they will tell you is that the relationship is ALL that matters. And don’t do anything to put stress on that.You should really ask them what it was like in the Great Depression. These are the people who struggled more then we are now. And they still remain happily married.

I can’t tell you what you should and shouldn’t buy, or how much is too much for a certain item. What I can tell you is ” Will that really make a difference in your relationship, now or 10 years from now?” Isn’t a relationship more of what’s to come then whats happening right now? If we always focused on what makes us happy NOW, then I can tell you that the relationship will eventually be less then it could’ve been, and the credit card companies will love you even more.

Other things to think of are…

In todays view everyone needs a home phone and a cell phone with internet, texting, games, music downlads, and on top of that a new phone every time the newest one comes out!

Really? Don’t you see the enslavement things like this cause? See what you can do to cut cost!

TV? Do you really need the TV? And all the add channels and programing. I have a friend who pays almost $200 extra dollars a month for his football channels! Now he can watch 8 games at one time… Really? Or just the extra $10 a month for HBO or those other channels… See what you can cut!

Toys? Motorcycles, ATV’s, boats, snow machines, guns, scrapbooking supplies, computers, video games, workout equipment, ipods, and so much more! If you really want to cut your budget and get out of debt, you CAN forfeit these at least for a short while… in the long run you will have so much more after you are out of debt!

Movie rentals! These add up! couple bucks here, couple buck there! If your really need to get a movie in, try the dollar theater. Sure there is gum stock to the floor, just dont lick it! Or those box rentals you see like Blockbuster, or RedBox… use the free codes that come out all the time… or just make sure you only keep it one day, so they don’t keep charging you.

We have become a society that thinks we need these things to be normal! To fit in! Or just to survive! Trust me after the first couple days, you wont know any different! Just tell yourself that you want the burden of debt off your shoulders!

Once we got out of debt, every thing improved! Our life, our relationship, and now we get more, do more, and yes we can spend more! We buy things with cash and not plunk our hard earned money into interest to the bank!

Part 2…coming tomorrow

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