Are you an Etsy.com fan like I am?  Do you like to give unique, eco-friendly gifts?  Do you just like a bargain?  Then you'll love Heartsy.  This great site offers daily discounts on a wide variety of small, often eco-conscious online shops.  They feature everything from handmade jewelry to exotic soaps to paintings, stationery and wooden toys. 

If you sign up for the VIP account (about $7/month) you gain access to even bigger deals.  The site offers up several specific products each day as well as 'groupon'-like store-credit deals.  Do be aware, however, that the prices listed on the home page are VIP prices and may be slightly higher when you actually click on the deal.

I've already started my Christmas shopping and some of these deals are pretty good. 

 
 
Our favorite summer treat is making s'mores over the campfire.  However, with the triple-digit heat wave we've been having lately, a campfire just isn't practical.  So we've adapted the concept into a cool summer treat that is both fun for kids to eat and fun for them to help make.

S'mores Ice Cream Cake

12 graham cracker rectangles, crushed
1/2 gallon chocolate ice cream, softened
1 small container marshmallow fluff
1 jar hot fudge sauce
Spray whipped cream or cool-whip
chocolate chips (optional)

In a 9x9" square pan spread 1/2 of the graham cracker crumbs.  Top with 1/2 of the chocolate ice cream, a thin layer of marshmallow fluff, and 1/2 the hot fudge sauce.  Repeat layering.  Top with whipped cream and garnish with chocolate chips if desired.  Return to freezer until solid.

To serve, slice with a knife dipped in hot water and remove from pan with spatula. 

Tip Junkie handmade projects
 
 
My kids have funky but frugal style.  They don't care if I buy their clothes from Craigslist.  They don't care if the clothes have been handed down half a dozen times.  They don't care if I bought their shirts on clearance at the department store.  My kids do care if their clothes are fun!

Hats are a big thrill for the boys right now.  Almost any hat will do.  These boys will parade around the house in just their underwear as long as they have hats on their heads.  Construction hats, baseball caps, stocking hats with tails as long as the boys are tall.  Santa hats are not just for Christmas any more.   It doesn't matter if the hat is old and cracked, or faded and shrunk.  Every hat has a personality.  Every hat has a sense of play. 

And what hat doesn't need a great pair of shoes?  Big shoes, little shoes.  Tall boots or tiny flip flops.  Mommy's high heels or Daddy's tennis shoes.  Our boys cannot pass the shoe rack without donning a new pair.  Together the boys will play 'store' and sell each other mismatched getups that they'll proudly display to one and all. 

Bargain outfits are just fine for my kids as long as they can climb the jungle gym in them.  They insist that their pants have pockets to carry toys (or just to keep their hands warm), but aren't particular about brand or cost.  I imagine in the fall my kids will be heading off to school in their new school clothes accessorized with pieces from the costume box.  And I wouldn't have it any other way.



I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and jcpenney blogging program, for a gift card worth $50. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”
 

Let's Get to 50!

7/27/2011

 
Do you love giveaways?  I know I do!  I've got one in the works, but we're not unveiling it until we hit 50 Facebook fans. 

So drop on by to our Facebook page and give us a 'like' then spread the word!  The sooner we hit 50, the sooner you all get a chance to win some great products!
 
 
I had to take a brief hiatus from this blog after the birth of our third child.  Now that she is growing more independent and are getting back into a nice routine, I wanted to give things a grand relaunch!  I began that process by moving to a new domain.  Now I not only have this blog to post new articles, but I have handy-dandy links on the side where I can archive each post so you can search through them more easily. 

The goal now is to start posting on a regular schedule.  You should start seeing something like this:

Monday - Stuff I Love
Tuesday - Stuff I Don't Love
Wednesday - Book of the Week
Thursday - Recipes
Friday - Deals, Giveaways and general Cool Links

Always feel free to contact me with questions or ideas!

Also, be sure to check out our Facebook page.  I'm organizing a whole week of special giveaways when we hit our first 50 facebook fans!

And if you want to be sure not to miss a post, please follow us by Google Friend Connect over there on the right.  Thanks all!

 
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