It's Coming- Green Christmas Giveaway Blog Hop

Friday, September 30, 2011

Home Grown Families and Just My Everyday Life are hosting a Green Christmas Giveaway Blog Hop~ with a twist! First, the motivation behind the hop is to educate about alternatives to shopping at those “big box” stores during Christmas!

Buying local and supporting local businesses has such a HUGE positive benefit on communities but people don't always think of those options when buying. The GreenChristmas Giveaway Blog Hop will encourage people to think about the impact of their purchases and provide them with some great alternatives.

The Giveaway Hop will run from November 11-18 and will feature only 'green' products. Green does not mean organic only. Of course they mean sustainable, organic, eco-friendly, etc.

But, they are including products from ETSY, handmade, small businesses, independent consultants, authors, etc.

The One Income Dollar will also be being away some of my Stretching the One Income Dollar books to lucky readers.

Stat tuned!

CBC MarketPlace News Investigates Green Works

In a recent independent CBC Marketplace News investigation, of three popular natural laundry detergent brands tested, Clorox Green Works® was the only product proven to be free of petrochemicals.

In fact, the study showed that 98 percent of Green Works ingredients are indeed plant-based. So while the authenticity of some natural brands is rightly being questioned by some consumers and consumer groups, Canadians can rest assured that Green Works is a brand that is committed to delivering a standard of clean they can trust with naturally-derived ingredients.

I truly love Green Works products. I have tried their laundry soap as well and love, love , love the smell. It's a detergent that gets my clothes clean and leaves a fresh, clean smell after they are done washing.

Their naturally-derived laundry detergent is dermatologist tested and safe for sensitive skin. Safe on colors and made with natural, plant-based cleaning ingredients, Green Works delivers!

How Candy Became a Halloween Tradition

Thursday, September 29, 2011

It is the time of year for anyone with a sweet tooth to rejoice as Halloween is just around the corner. Stores everywhere are already stocking there shelves with Halloween themed candy. Perhaps the oldest of these sweet treats is candy corn, and it keeps coming back every year. Candy corn dates back to the 1880’s . Some other Halloween oldies but goodies include popcorn balls, wax lips, and caramel apple pops. Despite some of these candies dating back to the 1800’s it was not until the 1970’s that candy took center stage during the Halloween season. In fact, trick-or-treating did not start until the 1930’s and at that time kids were given coins, fruit and nuts as treats instead of candy.

Our favorite Halloween candy/chocolate sites (not limited to but including great Halloween treats)-

-The Madelaine Chocolate Company-With it's huge variety of smooth and yummy chocolates this Halloween, your sure to find something you'll love. One of our favorite picks includes their Haunted Hunt chocolate game which is like a scavenger hunt with caramel filled gooey ghouls and solid milk chocolate monsters.

What is so great about haunted hunt is that after trick or treating the fun doesn’t end and kids can sit around and play the game by reading the clues behind the windows and enjoy the chocolates they find. Halloween is a kid’s holiday but they still use the same high quality chocolate that they use for all their products. Offering solid milk chocolate, crispy milk chocolate as well as peanutbutter and caramel filled truffles all in brightly colored holiday themed foils.

Today's Winner

** Winner has been contacted and has 7 days to reply before a new winner is selected.
Thank you to all who entered

Autumn and Maple Syrup Peanut Butter

Nothing says Autumn more than delicious maple syrup, so this Fall why not give the gift of Peanut Butter & Co. Mighty Maple peanut butter? It’s great on waffles, pancakes, French toast, regular toast or fruit and other snacks. Give the foodie in your life the gift of Autumn flavor in a jar!

Their all-natural peanut butter is blended with yummy maple syrup. People have been telling them too that they love to spread peanut butter on pancakes and waffles for years. They love the way the rich and creamy peanut butter blends with sticky, sweet maple syrup to create an unbelievable taste sensation. This new variety of peanut butter is a tasty way to enjoy two great flavors - try it on toast, stirred over oatmeal, or on a sandwich with crispy bacon!

It contains no cholesterol, no trans fats, no hydrogenated oils, and no high-fructose corn syrup. It is also gluten-free, certified vegan, and certified kosher pareve by the Orthodox Union.

You can find it in a fun store near you, or by shopping online.

**Their online store doesn’t work for Canadian orders, but they are available in stores in Canada.

Review and Giveaway: Castle Baths Spa Products (US Only)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I'm a girl who loves her nightly bath.I can't just bath though in "plain" water.There has to be bubbles or some sort of sea salts in the water.

I love to have that sense of being pampered: by the smell and feel of the water.

I also love to use products on my skin,that make it feel smooth, like hand made goats milk soap. I love goats milk soap! If you haven't tried it, you don't know what your missing. It really is so much different than regular soap.You just feel so moisturized after you use it.

If you check out Castle Baths, you will find all sorts of products to pamper yourself with or give as gifts.They even have products here to pamper your pets! Their site includes: Natural Spa Products, Bath Products,and Gift Baskets as well. These products are handmade, fresh daily- with Natural Organic Ingredients! You gotta love it!

I tried their Jubilee goats milk soap and dead sea salts for a conditioning soak, in a Bergamot Grapefruit scent. It was quite heavenly to say the least. The aromotherapy benefits of it are very uplighting and refreshing.I tend to open up the jar of salts and just inhale for the wonderful scent alone!

Well, enough of me talking, go over to their site and see all the great stuff there I am talking about. Check out the promos too.

Castle Baths Spa Products would love to give one of my US readers a chance at a $25 gift certificate,just by leaving a comment and telling us which products entice you the most on their site.
A random draw will be made by on October 10,2011 from all entries recieved.

To Enter:
Leave a comment and tell us which products entice you the most on their site, along with your email.

Extra Entries:

Follow me in Google Friend
Sign up as an email subscriber
Tweet this Giveaway
Add me to your Blog Roll
Grab my button
Stumble any one of my posts and let me know which one
Like Castle Baths on Facebook

Best of luck to all!

Fish Oil- For Your Health: A Review and Giveaway

Healthy living is important to me. I'm not a saint when it comes to good eating, but I try to eat healthy. Besides being a fussy eater though and not eating alot of things I should be including in my diet, and having food intolerance, this limits me to alot of things. I don't eat fish either, but I'm aware of benefits I am lacking by not.Plus it's great for me and others with food intolerance because it contains no sugar, salt, soy, yeast, wheat, gluten, corn, artificial coloring, artificial flavoring or preservatives. It contains only natural ingredients.

I realized I could take fish oil for a supplement.Vectomega for example is up to 50 times more absorabable than fish oils and the only pure, natural form of Mega-3 fatty acids found in salmon.So if I miss out on eating fish and omega- 3 fatty acids, which are good for heart health, brain health, cellular health and anti aging, I know I can get them by taking Vectomega daily.

Gerry and I are feeling good about using our box of Vectomega- knowing we are both putting something good into our bodies.

You can find Vectomega at a store near you or by ordering online.Vectomega comes in a package of 30 tablets (MSRP: $25.95) or 60 tablets ($45.95)

Terry Talks Nutrition newsletter:

Vectomega would love to give away a box of their fish oil tablets to one lucky winner from Canada or the USA.
A random draw will be made by on October 9, 2011 from all entries recieved.

To Enter:

Please leave a comment and your email.

Extra Entries:

Follow me in Google Friend
Sign up as an email subscriber
Tweet this Giveaway
Add me to your Blog Roll
Grab my button
Stumble one of my posts and tell me which one

Best of luck to all!

A Night At The Radisson

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

On our way back from our trip/wedding, we will be stopping through Saskatoon,Sask..It's a 6 hour drive south from here, but where we have to drive to to catch a plane.Since we'll be getting in late too, we will need a nice relaxing place to stay.The Radisson Hotel Saskatoon looked like a wonderful place to lay our heads for the night.

This hotel is the city's largest hotel and has recently undergone a $5 million renovation to their lobby, second-floor convention space and their Waterworks Recreation Complex, which features a three-story waterslide, pool, whirlpool and fitness room. The Radisson Hotel Saskatoon, SK is located downtown in Saskatoon, Sask., overlooking the South Saskatchewan River Valley and City Center. With 291 rooms and 19 floors, the hotel is said to offer breathtaking views of the river valley as well as the downtown core.

Plus with their Club Carlson, I can earn points towards free stays and so many other great club freebies.

We look forward to our stay.

10 Fall Boredom Busters For The Kids

The fall season comes with a number of chores, back to school errands, school activities and preparing for winter. Despite the inherent busyness of the season, the loss of summertime activities can leave families bored during their downtime.

Children need relaxation time during the school year, but that does not necessarily mean that they need to spend their time sitting in the house. A family outing that requires physical or mental exertion can be relaxing too. It does not have to be expensive, just stimulating and fun for everyone.

The fall is a wonderful time to let children use their imaginations and spend time with the family. School will be demanding most of their attention, as well as social activities, so family activities lend balance to their lifestyles. Children certainly do not have much free time in the fall, so it is important to use it wisely.

Here are 10 cheap or free ways parents can keep the family active together in the fall:

1. Hayride: During the fall, many farms and people who have large properties host hayrides. Some of these are haunted and some of them are just to sit back and enjoy the view. Tickets for these are typically cheap. Sometimes they are even free, if the hayride takes guests to vegetable patches or apple orchards for guests to pick produce.

2. Tell Ghost Stories in the Dark: No matter the age, there are "spooky" stories that are appropriate. Choose a few that suit the ages of the children in the family. Set up an area outside or in the home that is dark, grab a few flashlights and sit in a circle. Let each person have a turn telling ghost stories, even small children. Their stories might be wacky, but they are getting a chance to use their imaginations and entertain their family.

3. Fall Picnic: One of the most wonderful things about the changing seasons is the way food changes with the weather. Teach children about fall cuisine by letting them pack a seasonal picnic with you. Make items like butternut squash soup, stuffed zucchini, carrot sticks and turkey, cranberry sauce, stuffing and mayonnaise sandwiches. Be sure to dress for the weather and choose an area where the fall landscape is highlighted, such as a forest.

4. Biking: Take the whole family for a bike ride in the fall to enjoy the foliage and get exercise. Once the winter comes, it is typically difficult to enjoy hiking and biking areas. Therefore, it is nice to do it just before it gets too cold and just after it is too hot. The best part is that biking costs nothing, apart from the cost of bikes, which can be rented if the family does not own bicycles.

5. Leaf Pile Jumping: One of the best, silliest and most active things to do in the fall is also a way to get yard work done. Have all the children rake the leaves in the yard into large piles -- with your help. Put lawn furniture, such as chairs or tables, next to the piles and encourage the children to jump right in. They can roll around in the piles safely if the family is careful not to rake up sticks with the leaves.

6. Apple Picking: Apple picking is not only physical, but also nutritious. Children and parents -- if they wish -- get to climb trees to pick the best fruit. They hike around an orchard together and bring home the healthy rewards of their fun toils.

7. Family Field Day: Find a park or use your own backyard to have a day of family fun. Fly kites, play tug of war, have foot races, relay races, wheelbarrow races, three-legged races, obstacle course, play tag or any other fun outdoor activity you can think of. Invite friends over to make the games more exciting. For many, this is a summer activity, but it is even better in the fall because you do not have to compete with heat.

8. Nature Walks: During the fall months, animals are getting ready for winter, depending on where you live. If you live in an area where it is very cold in the winter, your family may be able to spot animals hurrying around, getting their homes in order for hibernation or semi-hibernation. All you have to do is go for a walk in the woods and keep your eyes out for creatures.

9. High School Sports: Most high schools have a fall lineup of sports games that are open to the public. They are typically either cheap or free. Families can enjoy these together whether or not family members are on the local team.

10. Scavenger Hunt: Fall scavenger hunts are easy and fun for smaller children. They can be fun for older children, as well, but usually if there is a prize involved. Just make a list of fall items in the house or at an outdoor location and send the family off in search of those items.

You can mix and match any of these ideas or just use them as a jumping off point to fall family fun that does not empty your wallet. Let the children choose their own twists for the outings and activities as well, so they will be less likely to be bored with your choices. Every child has his or her own interests and will have more fun if they are included.

Do not let the fall weather put your family or your budget in a slump. Get into some warm clothes and get your family out there having fun before the snow starts falling.

Submitted on behalf of Primrose Schools: Child Care services with balanced learning curriculum by Emily Patterson ( @epatt1062 )

(Canada) Old Navy Save 25 % Off Today Only

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Today only 9/25- save 25% off your order- clearance items too- at Old Navy Canada.
Use promo code ONFUN25

Cruising with Psi Bands

Saturday, September 24, 2011

So for anyone who hasn't followed along, we're taking a Caribbean cruise for our wedding/honeymoon.It will be a first time cruise for both of us, so we're only going for 4 days. One of the things we are both are worried about is the possibility of getting sea sick.

Well, I came across a product I saw in a magazine,called the Psi Band.They work using wrist acupressure, an ancient healing art. Not only are they said to be good for motion sickness but also pregnancy sickness, chemotherapy and anesthesia. And their stylish looking too!

Great highlights include:

-their a reusable product
-adjustable: you wear like a watch
-FDA cleared and drug free
-reasonably priced at $15 per set

We can't wait to try them after reading all the wonderful Psi Band testimonials.
If you have more questions about them, you can see a FAQ on their site.
We'll be sure to keep you all up to date on how they work for us.

A Vacation Isn't a Vacation Without Viator

With the wedding , cruise and travel all planned for the end of October, we were looking for some activities to take in as well while we were stopped over in Miami, Key West, and Cozumel. Gotta see some sights!

We found a place online called Viator who will be helping us find some tours that will fit into our schedule and what we like to do to have fun.

Viator, Inc. sells tours and activities through the award-winning website, eight local-language sites serving European and Japanese markets, and more than 2,000 affiliated sites that include major hotel chains and airlines, online travel agencies, city-specific sites and more.

Looking around the site you will find a ton of tours and activities within most destinations you may be looking at visiting.Plus they have a low price guarantee. They want to give us the lowest price online or at our destination we travel to.

Another thing I love about the site is that it gives honest reviews of tours and activities that others have went on. So if you choose a location and activity, you will see what others have had to say, whether good or bad. Now that's being honest.

If you love to travel, and see what that area has to offer, you really must check out this site. We'll be sure to tell you all about what we see and do once we confirm OUR plans with Viator.

Today's Winner

Today's giveaway:

Thank you to all who entered- winner has been contacted and has 7 days to reply before a new winner is selected.

Friday-September 23

Friday, September 23, 2011

It's a beautiful day today.More so like summer than Fall, and we are due for the weekend to be very nice weather.Good for me, as it means I can get out for some outdoor walking with Gerry.The leaves are slowly turning yellow, and we have dew outside every morning, but the afternoons are wonderful to still enjoy.

I wanted to share as well with you all some money savers we had this week:

-picked up my used Kobo reader from an online buy and sell site and paid $65. This include 2 leather cases,the reader and a book light.I already downloaded one book for $2 and am contacting Kobo about seeing how I can make my "Stretching the One Income Dollar" book into a Kobo ebook.

-Picked up some insulation from the buy and sell site as well for $10- almost a full bundle that would have cost us at least $30 plus tax. Gerry's slowly insulating the workshop. Unfortunately not everyone has leftover insulation, but I'm still looking.

-Our kitchen sink tap was starting to spray out of one spot that seemed to have gotten a hairline crack. (This is a Danze brand that I may add, offering a lifetime guarantee).I called them and they are sending a replacement part for only $8 shipping.All other taps with the spray spouts were around $100 that I looked at. I didn't want to pay that, then was going to go used, till I thought of asking at the hardware store if they carried the replacements. The hardware manager told me that that brand was one that carried a lifetime warrenty. So I gave them a call and sure enough, they are able to replace for free.The tap: 7 years old.

- Am trying to earn referral points with Jetsetter-can I please have you Tweet this link code of mine?

Thank you everyone and have a great weather weekend!

September Is Build a Better Breakfast Month

It is most likely true that you have been told from a very young age that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. So, what happened along the way? When did two cups of coffee become an appropriate breakfast? This is the month to start over and build a better breakfast. Not only can breakfast be the most important meal of your day, but the best tasting one too. From egg whites to whole grain cereals to fresh fruit breakfast can taste great and be healthy. Since time is a problem for most, you may want to consider cereal bars high in fiber and yogurt cups, which will keep you full and will still be healthy.

-With September being National Breakfast Month it’s a good time to remember that breakfast didn’t earn the title of “most important meal of the day” for nothing. Knowing this, the folks at the Almond Board of California have come up with the “Morning of Good Intentions” program that includes breakfast recipes, tips from registered dietitians and the latest almond research news that can all be found at Adding almonds to breakfast is just the extra boost a bowl of cereal; a cup of low-fat yogurt or a slice of whole wheat toast needs to go from good to even better. In fact, in a recent study released in the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism, February 2011 by Dr. Richard Mattes, it was found that eating a breakfast upgraded with almonds (a low glycemic index food) aided in stabilizing blood glucose levels for the better part of the day -- while also keeping study participants satiated for a longer period of time.

-Fall means the beginning of a new school year and in turn means hectic morning routines. Jamba® All Natural Smoothies provide a better-for-you, convenient breakfast option that fits busy back-to-school schedules. The newest smoothie flavor, Caribbean Passion®, combines mango, peaches, strawberry and passion fruit flavors. The smoothies contain real fruit and non-fat yogurt that when blended with apple juice produce a genuine Jamba® smoothie right at home.

Sweepstakes and Linky

Thursday, September 22, 2011

If you have giveaways you can add them on this new Linky:
You can even enter sweepstakes here as well.

Today's Quick Tip

Rethink all purchases. Ask yourself how you can substitute for what you need to buy. Can you buy another brand for cheaper, can you buy used? Can you borrow this item? From food to household- rethink how you spend your dollar.

Isn't It Time For A Vacation?

Jetsetter provides access to the world’s greatest travel experiences at members-only prices — up to 50% off. Sales typically last five to seven days, and the inventory is first come, first served — so be ready to act fast!

Invite your friends to join Jetsetter and you'll automatically receive $25 to spend.
Plus, you’ll earn a $25 reward as soon as they buy their first vacation!

Guide to Buying a Car with Bad Credit

If you're buying a vehicle and you have a less than perfect credit history you may find that your options are more limited but there are still many ways in which you can obtain the necessary finance. Getting a good deal needn't be a problem either and the market is very much a competitive one for those with an adverse credit record.

The first and most important aspect to bear in mind is that you must be completely open and honest with any prospective lender and this will save any problems further down the line of the transaction. If your credit history isn't perfect, you must declare it at the very start of the enquiry. It must be kept in mind that any potential financier will be able to check your credit history for themselves and if they uncover information that isn't declared, the only likely outcome is a refused application.

An unsuccessful credit check can only harm your overall record so it is imperative that you are completely honest from the outset.

If you are buying a car from a dealership, chances are that you will be offered Bad Credit Car Finance while you are negotiating your purchase. Many showrooms are equipped to deal with enquiries of all kinds even for loans with bad credit.

There is an obvious advantage to this scenario from a convenience point of view. If you are offered a loan in the dealership itself, you can deal with the necessary paperwork and drive away before leaving the office but you must make sure that the offer is acceptable to you. Always check the interest rate to see how much you will be paying back over the period of the loan itself and check the terms and conditions and every detail. Maybe you'll want to pay the loan off early. Around 70% of personal loans are paid back before the end of the expiry date and even if you don't have any specific plans to do this, make sure that there are no early repayment penalties along the way.

Additionally, check whether the interest rate on your loan is fixed or variable. If it is fixed, you know exactly how much you will be paying back but if it is a variable rate, the interest percentage could rise leaving you with more to pay over the lifetime of the loan.

Some bad credit loans will ask for a guarantor who would become liable for the loan if the original borrower were to default. Usually, this is a member of the same family with a better credit history but you must make absolutely certain that they are comfortable with this before you sign the paperwork.

Above all, it pays to shop around and this applies even more when you have a bad credit history because it can be so tempting just to accept the first offer that comes along.

So, take your time and consider all your options. Contact as many lenders as you can and check any online comparison sites because with a little hard work and perseverance, anyone with bad credit can still get a vehicle loan that is perfect for their circumstances.

Helen Pritchard writes for both, a used car classified
website and Car Finance 247 who specialize in helping people obtain car
finance deals

Pillsbury's New Baking Products

Feel like baking up a storm?

Just in time for baking season, Pillsbury has a selection of delicious new baking products for you to try. In stores now:

· Mocha Fudge and Dark Chocolate Pillsbury Brownie Mixes( We tried these and although I'm not a coffee lover, Gerry is, but I loved the smell of them baking.Smelled like coffee alright and so simple to mix and place in the pan. They turned out great and he loved the flavour.)

· Pillsbury Cookie Mixes in Chocolate Chip,Perfectly Pumpkin, Chocolate Funfetti and Sugar Cookie
( I mixed up the Perfectly Pumpkin cookies, rolled them into balls, flattened and baked. They came out perfect and with such a nice pumpkin flavour. Gerry couldn't stop eating them!)

· Sugar-Free Moist Supreme® Cake Mix in Classic Yellow and Devil’s Food

· Sugar-Free Brownie Mix in Chocolate Fudge and Milk Chocolate

The “Big Red” Is Back- Plus a Cookbook Giveaway ( Canada only)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The use of a precise recipe is pertinent for most individuals in the kitchen, especially when baking. However, some recipes and one specific cookbook is far better than the rest for baking, broiling, frying, sautéing and any other cooking method, and that of course is the Betty Crocker, “Big Red” cookbook. Women have been using this infamous cookbook since it débuted in 1950. However, as cooking styles change and as we change so has the “Big Red” cookbook, this year marks the release of a new addition.

The Betty Crocker Cookbook is valued at approximately $35.99 and will be available through Amazon, Indigo and Chapters, and Wiley Publishing.

The new addition has 1500 easy recipes that will be a treat for any cook. This cookbook is a must have for every kitchen, and one lucky Canadian reader will be walking away with the book for free. A random draw by will be made on November 4, 2011 from all Canadian entries recieved.

To Enter:
Tell me if you currently have any Betty Crocker recipe books in your collection.

Extra Entries:
Follow me in Google Friend
Sign up as an email subscriber
Tweet this Giveaway
Add me to your Blog Roll
Grab my button

Best of luck to all!

Review: Lefty's Left Handed Store

Monday, September 19, 2011

My youngest daughter Erika was born left handed. Growing up, she always had a harder time managing tasks such as cutting paper, buttering bread and pretty much anything else that used items geared for right handed people.Living in a small town I couldn't even get her left handed scissors for school, except one year we found a pair in the city.Didn't have them long though- she had them stolen at the beginning of the school year.

As time went on, she struggled with scissors and utensils made for right hand people. So you can imagine it was a real treat for us to come across an online store selling products for left handed people.

With the left handed kitchen set she reviewed, she said she wished she would have had these utensils to use growing up. ( Erika is 19).

She also loves the left handed Fiskars scissors that are making life so much easier.Molded just for lefties.

One of my favorite sayings for lefties also appears on one of their spiral notebooks in their sale section : "I May Be Left Handed But I'm Always Right". This is a great place to give a gift certificate for that lefty that has everything.But if your in San Franscisco , drop in and see them at their location at Pier 39.

Today's Winner

Saturday, September 17, 2011
Today's winner:

***Winner has been contacted and has 7 days to reply before a new winner is selected.
Thank you to all who took time to enter.

A Sales Job With Vector Marketing

Friday, September 16, 2011

Despite economic increase in some areas of the economy there are still many areas and people hurting to make a living. The jobs just are not there, and there are too many people trying to get the ones that are available. Many workers have turned to industries that they would not have dreamed being involved in before the economic crisis. One such industry is that of sales. However, this industry is not for everyone. You must have a “go get ‘em” attitude, thick skin and the gift of gab. If these characteristics describe you and you are need of a job, you may want to consider working for Vector Marketing.

Unfortunately, the company has gotten a bit of a bad name. Many salesmen and women believe it is a scam and do not want to work for them. However, the company is completely the opposite of that, and really a great company to work for. If sales is a suit that fits you well then you may want to consider working for Vector. Not only do they treat their sales staff well, but also their customers. In attempt to make this sales job a bit easier Vector offers customers free knives, which will make buying a bit more enticing for the customers.

While a sales job is not right for everyone, it might be right for you. Having the right skills and personality will allow you to thrive with Vector Marketing if you give the company a chance. Times are tough for many, but a sales job could be the answer you were looking for.

Doctoring Myself To Save a Buck

I was recently having some problems with my big toe,( this photo I chose was much more fitting than MY slightly inflamed toe.) It was hurting and not sure why-thinking maybe over the summer and with wearing sandals, I managed to get some dirt under the nail. Well, after a month at least past, it was still bothering me,so I called a podiatrist in the city.( We only have general practitioners here in our small town .I try to either see a specialist or figure things out on my own and do my own doctoring).

In Canada, we don't have to pay for our medical treatments, although SOME we do. To see a podiatrist is a $70 fee.

Well, I called them in the city,and was told I could send in some photos of my toe by email. After I did that, I called over there and was told the doctor thought I had an ingrown toe nail and that I could get a partial removal for $300.Yikes!
Yikes not only to what it would cost but also after watching the procedure on U Tube.

I did some reading online and from what I read, I could do my own healing if it wasn't too bad, by soaking it in baking soda,taking ibuprofen for inflammation and seeing if I could get something from the drugstore that would lift the nail a bit.

So,I'm doctoring myself.Hoping for the best.I certainly don't want to pay $300 to have someone pull out part of my nail.Nor do I want to have part of my nail pulled out. Has anyone had this done?

In closing, may I suggest that for minor ailments, one checks online for possible solutions before "doing the extreme" or "paying the extreme".

The Thompson's Company Deck of Your Dreams SWEEPSTAKES ( USA Only)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Deck of Your Dreams Sweepstakes
with a $10,000 prize!

If your deck is a wreck — or if you have no deck at all — this is your chance for an exciting change! The Thompson's Company has teamed with HGTV/diy Network star Jeff Wilson to help take your visions of a backyard paradise from dream to reality.

And just take a look at these before and after photos showing the amazing transformation Jeff achieved in his own backyard. The winner will receive $10,000 and a personal visit from Jeff Wilson to kick off the planning and design process.

It's time to enter now before the deadline of October 1, 2011.

Free literature is available for DIY deck care.

Review,Giveaway and Discount Code:Paperlicious

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Review by: Cynthia

Paperlicious launched in New York City in 2005 with Owner/Designer Amy DeRouen Nelson and the goal of bringing a fun rock star perspective to the world of custom printed invitations, birth announcements, and social stationery.

Thank you Paperlicious for letting me "test" your eco-conscious cards. I love writing and these unique styled cards will be perfect for dropping family and friends a note. Buying cards in a store or mall is SO expensive, these are not.

I was impressed with the quality for being 100% recycled fiber paper-----they are firm cardstock and look great.

I picked The Blue Dots which will suit any occasion. I know anyone receiving them will be impressed. There are many designs to chose from. I love paper and cards of any kind, and get enjoyment out of sending friends and family notes and photos. These are perfect for that-----for just because-----when I am strapped for time and can't write a letter. Tell me who doesn't enjoy getting snail mail, even in the age of e-mails?

I received a neatly packaged, recloseable box of 25 notes with envelopes . I know these stylish cards would also make great gifts for Christmas----yes, I like to start my shopping early. Paperlicious has oodles of notes, stationery, and note pads. It is well worth "peeking" into their site. I know I love their cards!

For our thrifty readers, be sure to check out what's on sale! PLUS:
Current promotions for even more savings off of our already low prices!
•Free Shipping on orders over $65 with code FREESHIP65•10% OFF orders over $25 with code 10FOR2011

would love to give away a $25 gift certificate for products on their site to one lucky winner from Canada or the USA.A random draw will be held by on September 30,2011 from all entries recieved.

To Enter:

Please leave a comment with your email.

Extra Entries:

Follow me in Google Friend
Sign up as an email subscriber
Tweet this Giveaway
Add me to your Blog Roll
Grab my button

Best of luck to all!

Fall Apples Are Ripe and Ready

It is hard not to love fall with all the tasty treats there are to enjoy, especially apples. Not only are apples great to eat by themselves, they can also be used for baking and other delectable dishes. There are so many easy recipes that use apples such as pies, cobblers and even salads. It is definitely time to keep the doctor away with at least one apple a day this fall, these healthy treats are diverse and loved by just about everyone. What is your favorite apple variety and what will you be making with apples this fall?

Review and Giveaway: The StinkyKids

Who are the StinkyKids? Well, they are a group of 10 little stinkers who each have their unique qualities.They are teaching others that they should "Always be a Leader of Good".Their real life adventures teach children lessons we ourselves learned as "little stinkers", in funny and heart warming ways.

Their debut book "StinkyKids and the Runaway Scissors" is a great hardcover book.I loved this book for my 3 year old niece as it has nice, big, colorful pictures that just jump right off the pages.The book is great for younger ones and not "long winded", keeping your child interested in the story you are telling them.

StinkyKids also have a second upcoming book that can pre-ordered as well from Barnes and Noble, called: Stinky Kids See Full a Full Moon.

Be sure while on their site, to check out their cute character, plush dolls, a great add on when you are ordering one of the books.The dolls are great for any age and the books are suitable for ages 10 and under.

Check out the coloring pictures for coloring fun right now.

StinkyKids would love to give away to one lucky reader, a book and t-shirt in any size from infant to womens xl.Entrants can be from Canada or the USA.
A random draw will be made by on September 29, 2011.

To Enter:
Please leave your email and a comment.

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Tuesday-September 13

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

I've been meaning to "ramble" since the weekend but it just hasn't happened.

The weather around here has dropped frightfully.Brrr...and I even had to put on my furnace today.I made it till lunch time before I had to put it on.I have the sweater and slippers on as well but still we were all cold today.This morning I believe it was only 4 degrees! Rainy off and on too all day.

Bears have been without berries for a while now in the bush and they have been coming into town in the wee hours of the morning, getting into people's garbage bins, knocking them over and making a mess.Luckily our bin is made in a way that they can't get it open and they don't touch it.

I ordered my wedding dress too from a company online that makes dresses in China.The total so far is $115 so I hope they don't hurt me with duty fees when it makes it's way here to Canada. I have to wait up to 4 weeks for delivery. I'll no doubt be panicking by then hoping it makes it here before we leave.

Gerry is looking at getting a command start put into his truck. Winter's are very cold here, and one usually always needs to run their vehicle for a while before you can just "go".We'll be getting someone that has experience putting them in, over a business that does them.This will no doubt be a 3-4 hundred $$ savings.The command start unit is $120 so we are waiting for them to go on sale. Gerry said they should soon as this would be the season they will soon be advertising them in.

We saved ourselves a ton of money on my car recently. I was having troubles with the signal light not working all the time. The garage said it was probably a worn out something or another in the signal light lever. It would cost with labour and the part, about $600. I did not want to pay that and started thinking about how I could do this cheaper. Well, I thought a backyard mechanic would be cheaper and got to talking to one on our Facebook online buy and sell. He suggested the hazard light was the problem. I couldn't see how, but we ended up doing some tests by wiggling that button, and discovered that that's what it was. We bought a used part for $10 and Gerry installed it himself. We were quite pleased with that, but not pleased with the garage telling us what it could have costed us if we weren't smart consumers. So always be sure that before you spend money on bigger purchases, you think of how you can do it cheaper. You'll end up with savings guaranteed, with this mindset.

Enjoy your week everyone!


It’s Easy to Reduce Spending on Cars with One Income

Whether your significant other is a stay-at-home parent, looking for new employment opportunities, or returning back-to-school for further learning, or you happen to be a single-parent, it can become nightmarish figuring out new ways to spend smarter and spend less. The key is to start where you spend the greatest amounts of money, which for the majority of us includes a rent or mortgage, transportation, and groceries.

Where most people first look to refinancing their mortgage prior to looking to other areas of their spending, I would suggest starting with a thorough analysis of the amount of money spent on transportation and gas. Try to create a detailed spreadsheet dividing into such costs as each vehicle you own, the amount of money spent on gas on each vehicle, and the maintenance and insurance associated with the vehicles.

Most financial advisers would suggest getting rid of one vehicle to reduce payments, maintenance fees, and insurance rates. Often insurance is less expensive when, a family has multiple vehicles under the same policy and living with one car can place unmanageable strain on parents. It’s harder to manage kids and much harder to coordinate errand-running or searching for employment or attending further schooling.

By using auto refinance, a family can keep both vehicles while still cutting costs. The money saved in interest and loan payments can go to paying insurance and/or maintenance costs or to an emergency savings fund. Here are eight other money saving tips besides auto and mortgage refinancing:

1. Find simple ways to save 50-100 dollars a month without thinking too much. Maybe it’s giving up a cell phone, or switching cable companies to reduce fees. Some cable companies offer packages if you combine internet, cable, and phone service together. Try to go out to dinner bimonthly instead of weekly and substitute those mid-day runs to the coffee shop with self-brewed coffee.

2. Plan out grocery spending including cleaning and toilet supplies. Think in terms of a weekly or monthly menu (weekly is easier to think about) and include the types and amounts of non-food items you will need that week. When shopping, begin around the perimeter of the store and only hit the isles if the product or item is--absolutely--on your list.

3. Think about the amount of telecommunication you have. If it is possible to communicate with your boss to work from home for at least a few months, the worst thing he/she can say is not for also, see if another mother can take over your carpooling duties for a little while.

4. Seek out secondhand businesses. It’s not a crime to shop garage sales, thrift stores, or other resale shops, especially for children’s clothing. Most stores know that children are clothing sells and because children outgrow clothing so quickly, stores replenish their merchandise fast. Also, consider selling your own clothing to some of these places that will offer store credit and/or cash you could use to purchase clothing for yourself or even groceries you could not normally purchase.

5. Take advantage of all discounts available on the web and newspapers. It’s not just groceries that have coupons. Always be on the lookout for coupons for hotel, gas, technological appliances and devices, and even diapers. Just make it a point to only use coupons on items that you need.

6. Find new places to take your children. Whether it’s a park, zoo, library, or museum, most of these places offer free days or discounted days to attend. Also, consider forming a group of children and carpooling together.

7. Begin to barter with family and friends. Bartering is not for the cheap-minded, but the smart-minded. Offer to clean your mom’s old basement if she take your children to school…whatever the situation bartering saves money and is gift giving at the same time.

8. Be careful who you hang with. If most of your friends are wealthier, you need to let them know that you will not always be able to participate in certain get-together because of financial constraints. Now’s the time to find ways to spend time with them without spending extra money.

Using Frugality for Property Purchasing

Buying a home or any property may sound extremely expensive, but you can save up for that cost. Frugality can help you set aside enough dollars here and there to add up to a significant lump sum. In the end, you can purchase a nice piece of property just by using the money that you save by being frugal.

Saving a Percentage of your Check

Saving money for a home is not an issue if you set a savings goal that you can reach on a monthly basis. One of the ways that you can do this is by having a specific percentage of income taken out of your paycheck on a bimonthly basis. You can start your savings goal by just allocating 5% to 10% of your check for the purchase of an investment property. This money can be set up to be automatically drafted out of your checking account and placed into a special savings account for your property. When you have finally saved enough for your home purchase, you can pay cash for the house or at least have enough set aside for a healthy down payment.

Keep your Current Car Longer

Instead of trading your old car in for the latest model and buying a new one, you can hold onto it for a few more years and use frugality methods to purchase a home. You can bank the money that you would be paying for a new car and use it to pay for an investment property instead. This could easily result in helping you to save $5,000 to $6,000 a year towards a real estate purchase. This would make a serious impact on the principal payments for a home loan and give you a lower monthly payment at the same time. As long as you have an emergency fund set aside for anything that may pop up on your current car, you will be safe using new car money elsewhere.

Drop the Monthly Subscriptions

It is not only the big one time purchases that destroy a budget - consistent small monthly subscriptions can do major damage too. If you cut out the monthly expenses including cell phone bills, cable bills, movie rental subscriptions, and magazine subscriptions, you can easily save a few hundred bucks or more per month. There are plenty of free entertainment options that you can replace these paid subscription services with like borrowing DVDs from the library or watching some shows online. Doing something like this can free up your resources and get you one step closer to your property purchase.

By just following the basic lessons of frugality, you can save up more than enough for property in less time than you’d think. Remember though, before plopping down your cash on your new investment property, take the time to compare home loans and make sure that you are making the best use of your cash. It would stink to have saved so hard and then be stuck with a bad interest rate.

Review/Giveaway: Rate ( Canada Only)

Monday, September 12, 2011

Have you heard of ? Canada's personal finance rate comparison site ?

They just launched a brand new section of their site called LEARN that is dedicated to promoting financial literacy for Canadians through articles, tips, tools, and guides.

One new tool from the LEARN is their First Time Home Buyer's Guide which is a series of 14 daily emails to get property newbies into shape for buying their first home (think of it like a two week bootcamp for buying your first home).Plus, throughout the series they've also included quizes, tools, and tips along the way.

Rate Supermarket
would love all Canadians to check out what they have available on their site and as well are offering our readers a $50 Starbucks gift card giveaway!

A random draw will be held by from all Canadian entries that have included the mandatory enter requirement as their minimum entry.The draw will be made on September 24,2011.

To Enter:
Sign up for the First Time HomeBuyer's Guide and report back here in the comments section with your email.

Extra Entries:

- LIKE them on Facebook

- Follow them on Twitter

- Subscribe to their Newsletter

It's Coming:Pillsbury People Celebrate More Photo Contest (US Only)

From September 21 through November 30, 2011, fans of Pillsbury baking mixes, frostings and flours can visit to enter the Pillsbury People Celebrate More Photo Contest. Fans will be asked to submit a photo capturing an everyday family celebration, plus a brief description (200 words or less) describing the moment and how the family experience made them feel. Ten finalist photos and captions will be chosen and posted on for a nationwide online vote to help decide the winner beginning in January 2012. The winner will also be invited to the ultimate hometown celebration for the Pillsbury Doughboy’s birthday this spring.

Also, just in time for baking season, Pillsbury has a selection of delicious new baking products:

· Mocha Fudge and Dark Chocolate Pillsbury Brownie Mixes

· Pillsbury Cookie Mixes in Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Funfetti and Sugar Cookie

· Sugar-Free Moist Supreme® Cake Mix in Classic Yellow and Devil’s Food

· Sugar-Free Brownie Mix in Chocolate Fudge and Milk Chocolate

· Pillsbury Sugar Free Creamy Supreme® Frosting in Chocolate Fudge and Vanilla

September Is International Women’s Friendship Month

Most of us women would be lost without our female friends. Our friends are there for us when we need a shoulder to cry on or a pal to share in a laugh. Without these beautiful women in our lives it would be hard to get through a day, a month or a year. So, this month make sure you thank all of your wonderful friends for being there for the good and bad. You can also celebrate by having a girl’s night out, or even make a whole day of it. Our friends keep us sane and deserve to be recognized for doing so this month and always.

CVS/pharmacy Photo Centers has a variety of personalized photo products to make the special moments friends have together tangible and memorable.

By adding photos to your account on or bringing digital media (such as a flash drive or camera memory card) to an in-store kiosk, you can create personalized items such as:

· Collage Blanket – A perfect gift-giving option for the women in the family! Favorite photos can be used to create a one-of-a-kind, soft, fleece throw – used to warm up at home or for decoration.

· Keepsake Box – Girlfriends can display photos in a unique way with their mahogany stained keepsake wood box that’s 5.25" square and 2.25" deep, and lined for protection.

· Wall Art – Interested in showing a perfect night out on the town or vacation with the girls? A fabulous photo with great dimension on a wall mounted wood panel with a glossy scratch-resistant finish is perfect for the occasion!

Remember your friends this month during International Women's Friendship Month.

Review: Calabasas Candy Company

We always love to review chocolates and handmade artisan candy always make that review, more of an experience.

We had the opportunity today to review caramels from the Calabasa Candy Company and they were so good, that we said to ourselves;" one or two pieces only for now", and then just kept cutting more of the roll,beyond the first and second pieces! Very tasty and much like Tootsie Rolls but not as hard. Not too sweet either and nicely packaged.

Their online store carries marshmallows, caramels, nougats and truffles.So for those with a weakness for artisan candy, visit the Calabasas Candy Company.

Today's Quick Tip

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Was at my dentist yesterday and he told me that it's very important to floss every day.Not flossing will lead to plaque build up, inflammation of the gums and bleeding.In the long run by adding this one step to your dental routine, you can eliminate further problems down the road.

Today's Winners

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Today's Winners:
ebickell at hotmail dot com
pamfreecycle at gmail dot com

All Winners of the following giveaway:

** Winners have been contacted and have 7 days to reply before a new winner is selected.
Thank you to all that entered.

Review:Eco-friendly : Kelly-Moore's "Green" paint

Our back yard needed a complete rehaul this summer since Gerry built the workshop in the back yard and started moving small sheds as well as fences and gates around.But rather than tearing down the back yard fence we once had and buying a new one, he just revamped things,and moved and restructured to fit in a different area of the back yard.That left the fence looking liked a pieced together fence. Some painted boards and some unpainted boards.

Kelly-Moore came to the rescue with a recycled eCoat paint for Gerry to try. He never had used recycled paint before but knowing it was good for the environment, he was eager to try it out- plus get his fence looking good again.

eCoat recycled paint is made with a minimum of 50% post-consumer waste paint. It is completely remanufactured to assure consistent performance.eCoat is available in both flat and semi-gloss enamel finishes and comes in 7 ready mixed colors.

Check out their store locator for a store nearest you as well as their full line of products.

Thank you to Kelly-Moore who provided us with a gallon of their eCoat recycled paint in the color slate to get our back yard fence back in tip top shape.

September Is National Apple Month

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The month of September is finally here, and that means fall is around the corner.

What better month to celebrate fall’s favorite fruit, the apple, than September?

This month marks the start of school, colder weather and fall traditions; therefore it is the ideal month to really start enjoying apples. While the fruits of summer are always enjoyable nothing quite beats an apple. Apples can be used in pies, cobblers and other sweet treats. Not to mention they go great in salads and other main dishes, and everyone loves a candy or caramel apple on a stick. Additionally, the number of apple varieties is endless, from bitter to sweet and from firm to soft there is an apple variety for every need. So, say goodbye to summer fruits and hello to the apple, after all it is the staple fruit of fall.

Also fitting nicely into National Apple Month:

-DOLE Real Fruit Bites- combining three healthy favorites – fruit, yogurt and whole grain oats – into one delicious taste. Each bite-size piece is made from real DOLE dried fruit chunks, coated with yogurt and sprinkled with toasted whole grain oats. DOLE Real Fruit Bites are the perfect naturally sweet and delicious on-the-go snack. Each pouch has 90 calories making it the ideal portion-controlled, healthier treat

What A Spider!

Just wanted to share a photo of a spider my daughter found at the petting zoo today where she works. She said it was soooo big. Said she freaked out when she saw it. For us living in northern Canada, big spiders like this are rare.Insects -yuck!

She used the fork to show me how big it was.

Review: My Wedding Flip Flops From Advantage Bridal

Since I'll be getting married on the beach next month, I wanted to get a pair of wedding flip flops to go with my dress.After all, do you really want to wear heels at your beach wedding or have your flats filling up with sand? I think not.

Lucky for me, I found a wonderful company called Advantage Bridal that I am reviewing wedding flip flops for.The flip flops arrived today and are very nice. These are white Havaianas. Custom decorated with a satin ribbon wrapped around each strap and embellished with Swarovski crystals.Comfy too- and that's important.

Advantage Bridal has grown since 1992 and carries much more than shoes for their brides though.They offer over 40,000 unique products- from wedding invitations to wedding jewelry to wedding cake toppers and more. They cater also to the future groom and the groomsmen so the guys aren't left out.

Also be sure to check out their wedding ideas page. I love this page as it has so many suggestions that you just have to bookmark it!

Wednesday- September 7

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

America's Got Talent is on soon-anyone else been following this? We are are faithful watchers from the beginning and follow season to season.

We have an appraiser coming tommorow since we are having our mortgage moved over to another bank, that is giving us a better deal with interest.It will be interesting to know what our home is worth on the market.

We have been having a hot week here. Mornings are cool and dewy and it doesn't start getting hot till after lunch, but boy it's been hot.

Gerry started turning up the garden after work, as we pretty much got all we can out of it.He's also been taking out the weeds that got in with our plants and just cleaning it all up. I don't have that green I hate getting dirty.

I have to start thinking of ordering my wedding dress soon. I have found some for $100 online that come from China that would work. Considering I only need one for half hour of photos and 10 minutes of a wedding ceremony, I still want to look nice but don't want to spend a fortune. After all, I am frugal.

Have a nice evening everyone.


Thirty, Thriving, and Skipping the Financial Adviser

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

With the economy continuing to look meek and my pocketbook continuing to run dry like most everyone else, discussions about planning for retirement get pushed further and further aside until sometimes I just forget about it altogether. If you are having a hard time finding the discretionary income to invest in a reputable financial adviser, it might just be the perfect time to do some diligent research for that perfect retirement calculator. The majority of retirement calculators function similarly by helping you, with pen and paper in hand, mathematically forecast your prior to retirement and retirement finances with necessarily employing the interference of a seasoned financial adviser.

While some of the more complicated calculators will make sure to include other sources of retirement income such as social security and pensions, after viewing a more complex calculator, I have come to the conclusion that there are so many very important things to consider if you choose to try one of the many retirement calculators out there:

1. Save ten percent of your gross income---If you automatically set aside ten percent of your income for contributions to savings accounts, 401K’s and IRA’s, then you don’t have any real math to figure out. It’s also easier to not miss the money when you cannot spend it in another area from the beginning. When your place of employment matches a certain percent on their 401K, always contribute the maximum amount to receive those pre-tax benefits of free money.

2. Research the best savings accounts—Shop around for the best rates from banks to community credit unions whether it be a money market and/or traditional savings account. Always be careful of hidden maintenance fees or other fees that can take a bit out of finding the most competitive interest rate.

3. Invest in a Roth IRA. Since the current contribution limit for a Roth IRA is about 6,000 dollars, it makes the most sense to contribute here after 401K and before standard savings accounts.

4. Forget about the idea of Social Security—I tend to error on the side of caution and try think in terms of retirement savings like you are not ever going to see social security. If a retirement calculator includes a section on social security, leave it blank. If you can afford to save 12-15% of your gross income, figure out a way to do so.

5. Skip the financial adviser unless you know them—By all means, unless you have a close relationship with a friend or no have connections with a financial adviser, it just might pay to invest that money into your savings and rely on your own planning.

From the simple to the complex, a good retirement calculator allows you to become your own best financial adviser, when you still have adequate time to make smart investments. A good retirement calculator will break down your financial outlook and give you a streamlined view of--at least--your current principal, yearly contribution, years to grow, and growth rate.

Review and Giveaway : Prada Candy ( Canada only)

Available September 2011-Prada Candy- at Shoppers Drug Mart and the Bay.

Prada Candy is an Eau de Parfum for women- Prada Candy incarnates the new Prada woman: she's daring, sensual, full of life and implosive.

The perfume is named after this seductive and joyful girl who is running wild.

Seductive notes: Joyful and Carefree—Explosion of caramel

Powdery notes: Sophistication—Cocktail of musks

Vanilla notes: Sensuality—Benjoin overdose

Created by Daniela Andrier, Prada Candy is the third edition to the Italian luxury house’s fragrance range. Prada Candy comes in a young and fun pop color packaging as well.

Not only will you be able to enjoy the parfum but as well their line includes a scrub,lotion and shower gel.

Prada Candy would love to give away one of their parfums to one lucky Canadian winner.

A random draw will be made by on September 16,2011 from all Canadian entries recieved.

To Enter:

Please leave a comment and your email.

Extra Entries:

Follow me in Google Friend
Sign up as an email subscriber
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Grab my button

Best of luck to all!

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