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Last Minute Christmas Gift Ideas

Let's say you didn't quite get your Christmas shopping completed before December. If you're feeling a little overwhelmed by your list and lost on ideas, these may be just what you need. 

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How To Finish Your Christmas Shopping Before December

  There is one little trick to finishing Christmas shopping before December. In fact, we have one tip that could get everything done in a single day.

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The Can’t Fail Christmas Gift: Gourmet Gift Baskets

**Updated 11/17 Every year many of us participate in a few Secret Santa swaps: those with family, friends, and maybe a work-related or neighborhood swap. Have you ever spent too much looking for a perfect gift for one of these?  These swaps  have an  underlying pressure since we all secretly want our anonymous gift to be the most coveted. Everyone feels that little pang of pride when the gift you've brought is "stolen" the most, right?   So, we're going to let you in on our secret weapon for Christmas gifts this year....

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Black Friday And Cyber Monday 2017: Everything You Need To Know

It's November and we are still shaking off the cobwebs and candy from Halloween. But, remember the goal for a stress free Thanksgiving? Well, that would mean

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How To Save (And DIY) Your Halloween Costumes

Have you waited until the (almost) last minute to find your Halloween costume this year?

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Budget Advice Round Up

Go ahead - get excited and then bookmark this page for future reference!

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Spring Break Trips For Every Budget

Is it terrible that we already long for a spring break trip just weeks out from Christmas break?

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Blain’s Farm & Fleet: Our Favorite Spring Picks

It's no secret we are big fans of Blain's Farm & Fleet, as mentioned in this post here.  We remain impressed with their huge selection of products in a variety of categories. But, let's be honest -

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Valentine’s Day: 10 Fun Ways To Say I Love You

Who knew February could be so interesting?

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Top 3 Budget Blunders

Let's pretend that we didn't go over our Christmas budget (which we did) and that we didn't have any unexpected expenses this month (which we did) and that we are totally on track for 2017 so far with the family budget (which we are close enough to pretend so we are). Whew - okay now let's look at the past year and how we budgeted like crazy yet still had leaks. Leaks that caused money to trickle out more than we thought until we went back to see what happened. And guess, what? We think we aren't the only ones finding these top budget killers lurking around. Go ahead, take a peek and see if these apply for you too!

Budget blunder #1: kid costs

Wow - how things have changed over the past few years for us. Babies are expensive thanks to diapers and formula and child care costs, but our older kids are costing us a fortune all of a sudden. From increased eating to pricier outings, both kids just aren't as cheap as they were! Between sports, school and friends our kids are draining more and more of our money each month. Now that we are a full year in to these increased spending habits we can plan for them better. Still, we know parents of even preschoolers who are shocked when they go back to see the what was spent "on" their children. Also - tips on saving  on sports equipment , teacher gifts, and general advice for the whole school year.

Budget blunder #2: poor planning

Okay, so poor planning is a general term. What we mean is that we noticed on weeks when we did not meal plan, dinners involved another trip to the store or possibly even eating out. Huge money leak there. Another example, we underestimated costs on vacation because we tried to be frugal and wound up going over budget instead. Or we did not appropriate research deals and coupons prior to purchase so we spent more than necessary on a couple of items (ugh, cell phones). Poor planning. New technique now involves harnessing the power of technology for smarter accountability and planning.

Budget blunder #3: impulse buys

In the history of every budget the impulse buys are the downfall aren't they? But it's true. Impulse buys came in the form of buying popcorn and soda at the theater, stopping by Target instead of the grocery for Tylenol and finding a pair of shoes on sale, etc. That's another reason that we are back to setting an intention of mindfulness for 2017. If we can't kill our impulse buys completely surely we can reduce them by having more awareness of our actions. So, notice any of these in your own family budget leaks? Let us know on our Facebook page!

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