Friday, September 30, 2011

Get $ for your unwanted gift cards... and purchase gift cards at a discount

Ever receive a gift card as a gift to a place you know you'll never go?  Want to get some $ for your unwanted gift cards?  Check out!

They buy your unwanted gift cards AND they sell gift cards at a discount up to 25%!  I just went on their site and saw a bunch of Lowes gift cards selling at a discount (& no shipping charges!) - I feel like I'm at Lowes weekly now that I'm a homeowner, so I'm thinking I'm going to save myself a bit of money and purchase one of these!  Check them out & see what you can get rid of (or score!) today.

Free shipping on all Discounted Merchant Gift Cards

Box Creative for Discount Merchant Cards

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Sippy Cup Lids - MOLD & Replacement Lids

So in case there was any doubt before, this next post will defintely solidy in your minds that I AM a MOM, as I spend my days dwelling on the frustrations of getting mold in my sons' favorite sippy cup lids.  If you are a mom, you know how frustrating it is when your kids have a favorite sippy cup - one that you like too because it doesn't leak - only to get MOLD in the spouts and not be able to get it out!  I've had to get rid of my share of sippy cups & lids due to mold, and I decided I was finally sick of it, so I grabbed the mold filled cup lids and headed to, where else?  GOOGLE!  I googled the lids, found the manufacturers websites, and boldly asked for replacement lids.  Do you know what?  They sent them - free of charge!

I contacted 3 different companies - Learning Curve, The First Years, and Playtex.  The first two companies (via email correspondence through their website) each sent me several replacement lids based on my claim.  Playtex's website wouldn't let me "submit" my claim (something seemed to be wrong with their website), so I called the 1-800#  (Toll Free: 1.888.310.4290), spoke with the nicest lady in the world, and within less than 5 minutes of my time I have two $7.99 coupons for Playtex products being mailed to my home.  Success!  So, I just want to encourage all you frustrated moms to NOT throw our your kids' favorite cups, but spend a few minutes on the internet (see links to sites by above), submit your complaints, and see what happens!  It was worth my time & money to save my kids' TOY Story cups... maybe it is worth yours?

Monday, September 26, 2011

FREE Flu MIST vaccinations for children at Grant County Health Department - MONDAYS ONLY!

It is FLU SEASON.  Yuck. That means time for you and your kiddos to get your flu shot or flu mist. 

Did you know that on MONDAYS (only), the Grant County Health Department is giving out FREE flu mists (you have to be over age 2 to get the mist)?  For your child's free flu mist, go to the Grant County Health Department on Adams Street between 8am - 11am or 1pm-3pm (remember - Monday's only!).  These are first come, first serve, and when they're gone... they're gone!  Children over 6 months can also get a flu SHOT, but there is a fee for the shot.  The health deptartment is most likely still cheaper than your pediatrician's office, which not only usually charges for the shot/mist, but ALSO for an injection/delivery fee of up to $50! Ouch. 

Grant County Health Dept
401 S Adams St # 123
Marion, IN 46953-2030
(765) 662-0377

For more info on the flu mist, click HERE.  For more info from the CDC about why you should get vaccinated from the flu, click HERE.  Remember, getting vaccinated not only helps protect you and your family, but your whole community!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Totally Together - Shortcuts to an Organized Life - Book Review & GIVEAWAY!

I recently came across Stephanie O'Dea's blog, all about a YEAR of slow cooking (yes, a full YEAR - this girl got creative!), and in looking through her blog I noticed she has a new book coming out - Totally Together: Shortcuts to an Organized Life.  I was intrigued, as I'm always trying to find ways to find a balance between life/home/kids/work/etc., so I contacted Stephanie and she graciously sent me a copy of her book to review AND a second copy for one of my blog readers!  Yes, you have a chance to win a FREE copy of
Totally Together: Shortcuts to an Organized Life just for being one of my blog readers AND for adding your feedback in the comments section below.  See how to win your copy at the bottom of this post.

Totally Together is a great guide for moms, or really any woman managing a household and trying to stay sane.  It is a quick read, an easily digestible guide to keeping your household together without killing yourself.  It is a REALISTIC approach cleaning, laundry, meal preparation, hosting guests, etc.  It even includes a week-by-week calendar for the year to keep you organized, and includes some simple cleaning tips that I've already incorporated into my daily & weekly routine.

Going into the Fall, which is the busiest time for my family (& I'm guessing most families!), it was well worth my time and sanity to read her book, remind me of what is important, help me prioritize my chores, and give me some tips/suggestions for cleaning & meal prep.  It even has suggested chores that kids can do, broken out by age - LOVE IT!  We're all trying to find a BALANCE in life, and this book is a helpful tool in achieving sanity in simpleness by keeping an organized life.  It is a great aid for any women who is trying to do it all!  You can pick up a copy at Amazon (my vendor of choice these days b/c I have FREE shipping with PRIME right now as a perk from the AMAZON MOM Store) or any major bookstore for about $10.  I think it would also make a a great gift, so pick up a copy for yourself and a friend of yours and share the sanity! 

Want to WIN a FREE copy of Totally Together?  Add to the conversation - SHARE the sanity!  Leave your feedback below in the comments section on the following topic: what is YOUR best organization/sanity keeping/family managing/time saver/meal preparation/cleaning tip?  Share your tip below in the comments section AND email the same tip to, and one randomly selected person will win!  The winner will be notified via email by October 7th, 2011. 


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Lowes Build & Grow FREE Kids Clinic - Sept 24 @ 10am

The next Lowes Build & Grow FREE Kids Clinic is this Saturday at 10am at Lowes.  This week you'll be building a fire truck.  Kids 3 & up with help are welcome.  If you've never taken your kiddos to this clinic, you should try it!  Both my husband and I have taken our 4 year old and he always loves coming home with the new toy he's built! 

Click HERE to register, or for more info.  Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Free Coffee at 7-Eleven 9/29 from 7am – 11am

Not sure where the closest 7-11 is around here... does anyone know?  On Thursday, 9/29 they're giving away a free medium coffee from 7am - 11am.  I always like free things....:)

Friday, September 16, 2011

Globe Theatre Fall Schedule - Family Friendly Affordable Movies!

Now that school is back in session at IWU, the Globe Theatre is up & running again!  Somehow fall weather makes going to a movie seem cozy & perfect!  I always seem to forget about this place until I happen to be on campus and walk by.  It is worth checking out their schedule (Click HERE or see below), as this is an affordable place to take your fam to the movies!  Ticket prices & schedule are below, and remember they have pretty cheap snacks (popcorn, etc.), but I think you can also bring your own in with you. 


  • $2 Student w/valid ID
  • $2 Faculty/Staff w/valid ID
  • $3 Adults
  • $2 Kids (12 years and under)
The window will open for ticket sales one hour before the first showtime.

Movie Schedule

Honey I Shrunk the Kids
Sept. 17 
Sat 8:30/Dusk
PG 1 hr.33 min.
This movie is FREE & is on Goodman Hall Lawn

Kung Fu Panda 2
Sept. 23, 24
Fri. 7, 9, 12am
Sat. 7, 9
PG 1 hrs.31 min.

Mr. Popper’s Penguins

Oct. 14,15
Fri. 7, 9, 12am
Sat. 7, 9
PG 1 hr.35 min.

Oct. 28, 29
Fri. 7, 9:30, 12am
Sat. 2:30, 7, 9:30

Nov. 4, 5
Fri. 7, 9:30, 12am
Sat. 7, 9:30
PG 2 hr.34 min.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Johnny Appleseed Festival (Sept 17 - 18)

My family & I went to this for the first time last year & it was a really fun event!  Held in Fort Wayne, the Johnny Appleseed Festival celebrates the traditional crafts, antiques & music of pioneer life, as well as the FOOD!

This event is free to get into, but each booth/food item costs #, so take some cash, your family & have fun walking around taking in the sights, sounds, smells & tastes!  

For more info visit:

Monday, September 12, 2011

Labor Day Weekend Project - Refinishing Furniture

So Saturday of Labor Day Weekend I was out walking with my girlfriend Jackie when we came across a large hutch with a FOR SALE sign on it sitting on the outside of someone's porch.  I instantly loved it, and even though it was very 80's looking, I saw potential.  I knocked on the door, asked the price, some pit bulls ran out and scared my girlfriend & me, and through some awkward but quick negotiations, we agreed on a price and a pick-up time.  I came home from my morning out announcing to my husband that I'd bought a hutch and that it was big and that he and my girlfriend's husband needed to go pick it up right away.  Poor guy was less than excited.  They pulled into our garage to unload it, and I could see my husband's face was exactly what I'd anticipated, "Why would you waste your money on this?  What are we going to do with it and how much did you pay for it???"  I swore to him I had big plans and that he'd love it!  I spent the next three days (Sat afternoon, Sunday & Monday) working on it in an effort to prove my husband wrong!  I think I succeeded!  It was kind of a pain, but the final product was worth it! 

BEFORE (I should have taken a picture of it while it was still in it's pathetic state on the pit bull porch!  Here is is shown in my garage in two pieces):

I did not strip the piece, but probably should have.  Instead I cleaned it out (vacuumed out drawers & wiped whole piece down with kitchen cleaner just to get the germs out), put two layers of black flat paint on it (let it dry 24 hours in-between coats), then I distressed it with sandpaper to give it an aged look, wiped it down again to get off all the dust from sanding, and put two coats of polyurethane on it (again, letting coats dry for 4 hours each time).  I was going to switch out the hardware, but the spacing on the piece was not standard, so I would have had to special order new handles for the drawers, and when it was all said & done we actually decided the old hardware looked cool, so I was happy to save some $!  When it was all said & done, I spent $75 for the hutch, $5 for industrial gloves, $11 for the can of polyurethane, and I had the paint & brushes left over from another project, so $91 in total, and 3 days of sweat equity! 

Have you done any neat projects?  Looking to do one?  I'm definitely still in the learning stage (all I've done before is paint a few dressers & then recently did two end tables with spray paint, stain & polyurethane), but recommend the following blogs for learning & for inspiration (I also really like how helpful the folks at Lowes are!)!  These gals challenge me to try new things & I LOVE finding something for cheap that has potential & then the feeling of accomplishment of turning someone elses's cast-offs into something I love!    AND

Friday, September 9, 2011

MGH Heart Walk - Saturday, Sept 10th at 9am

The Marion General Hospital hosted annual Heart Walk is this weekend - Saturday, Sept. 10th at 9am.  This is a FREE event put on my MGH to encourage people to have fun walking & get into the groove of exercising.  The walk is non-competitive, and is only 2 miles long, starting in the basement of the ACC building across the street from the hospital and going toward Matter Park and then turning around and looping back.

Walkers of all ages receive a free T-shirt, refreshments are provided (last year they had a light breakfast before the event and snacks afterward), door prizes are being given away, free blood pressure checks are available, educational booths will be set up, and low-cost health screenings (cash or check only) are also available (glucose, cholesterol, PSA, osteoporosis, colon cancer screening, etc.).

Okay - I did this event last year with my family, and it was great!  We were by far the youngest people there, but it was fun none-the-less!  I want to always set a good example for my kiddos about exercising, and I think events like this are a fun way to be part of the community and teach my kids about the importance of being active and living a healthy lifestyle.  I encourage you to go!  The whole thing only took about an hour last year, so you still have your whole Saturday left!  :)  And, if it is nice, you can walk AGAIN after it is all over to Matter Park & let your kiddos play.  :)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Matthews Covered Bridge Festival - Sept 9 - 11

The Matthews community Covered Bridge Festival is this weekend, starting Friday at noon and going through Sunday at 5pm.  The weekend includes a festival (bouncy things for kids, food, booths, etc.), live music, antique tractor parade, choir & band performances, a church service on Sunday morning, and a tractor pull.  Admission is $2 per person, but kids 10 & under are free.  Activities like the bouncy thing are additional $.

A little trivia about the Matthews covered bridge:
Built at New Cumberland in 1877 by William Parks of Marion at a cost of $722.  The 1913 floor floated the bridge a half mile downstream.  It was returned to its foundations by rollers and horsepower.  New Cumberland was the second community in Grant County - founded in 1833. 

For a more info and a complete schedule of events:

Have fun!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Lowes Build & Grow FREE Kids Clinic - Sept 10 @ 10am

The next Lowes Build & Grow Clinic is this Saturday at 10am at Lowes.  This week you & your kiddo will build a police car.  If you've never done these clinics, they take about 20-30 mins, and include all the tools/materials you'll need.  Ages 3 & up with assistance are welcome. 

For more info, or to register, click HERE.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Grabill Country Fair - Sept 8-10

Enjoy Grabill's (Grabill, IN near Fort Wayne) country-style fair that highlights the area's Amish heritage.  Food, crafts, and kids events.

For more info:

Saturday, September 3, 2011

September 24, 2011 is Museum Day - Get 2 Free Tickets to use on Museum Day!

September 24, 2011 is Museum Day, and you can get 2 FREE tickets to use at one of hundreds of museums across the country by clicking on the link below and filling out the information form.  Click HERE for more info:

FYI Marion Families: Muncie Children's Musuem, Connor Prairie, and Minnetrista are included. 


When Is Museum Day?
Saturday, September 24, 2011
How do I find out if a museum in my neighborhood is participating?
Visit the Find a Museum page to locate a participating museum in your area.
Where do I find the Museum Day Ticket?
The Museum Day Ticket is available on the Ticket Information page. Fill out the form and you will be emailed instruction on downloading your ticket.
Can anybody get free admission on Museum Day?
No, you must present the Museum Day Ticket, available on the Ticket Information page.
Can I bring my whole family to Museum Day?
No, the Museum Day Ticket is only good for two people per household, per address. If you go to Museum Day with more than one guest, your other guests will have to pay full admission.
Are all museums in the country participating in Museum Day?
No, museums must elect to participate. Find a museum in your area now.

  • Offer is valid only on Saturday, September 24, 2011. (Exceptions for Museum Day museums closed on Saturdays).
  • Ticket must be presented for free general admission to one venue and is good for two people. *Not valid for special exhibits, parking, IMAX film screenings or for use with any other offers.
  • One Museum Day Ticket per household, per valid email address. Museum Day Ticket will be collected upon entry.
  • Museums and cultural venues participate in Museum Day voluntarily. *Smithsonian magazine encourages museum visitation, but is not responsible for individual museum content or participation.
  • If museum reaches capacity, museum has right to limit the number of guests until space becomes available.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Aldi's Milk Only $1.49/Gallon Thru Tuesday!

I made my weekly trip to Aldi's today, and they have milk on sale for only $1.49 a gallon!  Sale is thru Tuesday, Sept. 6th, and there is a maximum of 10 gallons per purchase.  All varieties are included!

Expiration date on the 5 gallons I purchased (yes, 5, don't judge - we drink a lot of milk at my house!) was 9/18, so there is plenty of time to use this milk!  I asked why they were pricing it so cheap, and was told that another store in the region was having a sale, and the sale price accidentally got printed in the Marion flyer, so they're making good on their mistake.  Their loss is my gain - go stock up on milk!