Monday, June 29, 2009

Win an area rug for your home!

I am so excited to have the opportunity to give one of YOU a fantastic area rug from CSN Rugs!

Like many first-time parents-to-be, Mr. T and I spent many hours last summer planning and choosing all of the perfect furnishings for our little munchkin-to-be's nursery. I loved looking around, finding my favorite color schemes, bedding, furniture, and all of those other little details that are such a nice diversion from the long wait of the third trimester. But despite all of our careful plans, Mr. T and I could never settle on an area rug that fit both our budget and our taste.

And so, just a mere week before Munchkin's arrival, we found ourselves with a beautiful nursery with an empty floor. In desperation, we recycled an area rug from our old house so that at least our feet would stay warm during those upcoming long, late nights. To this day, I look at the boring brown rug on her floor and sigh, thinking about how much difference a beautiful area rug would make to her room:

Are you in the same boat? Then this giveaway is for you! Head over to CSN Rugs and you will find a huge selection of area rugs in all shapes, sizes, styles, and price ranges. Their website is set up so that you can easily narrow your rug options by colors, size, materials, and more. I can't believe how many different rugs I found there! I wish I had known about this site when I was looking for munchkin's rug last summer.
Some of my favorites:
Isn't this one sweet? I would love to have this rug in Munchkin's room!

The Rug Market - Giant Paisley Pink Kids Rug
  • Features:
    Construction: Hand made
    Technique: Loop / Pile
    Material: Cotton
    Color: Pink and ivory
    1'9" x 2'9
And maybe you're shopping for team blue, not pink...isn't this one perfect for all of those contemporary bedding sets?

The Rug Market Kids - Oxygen Blue / Brown Contemporary Rug
  • Features:
    Construction: Hand made
    Technique: Tufted / Loop pile
    Material: Cotton
    Collection: TRM Kids
    Color: Blue / Brown / Ivory
    1'9" x 2'9"

Or maybe you're more interested in something a bit more grown-up, like this one. I can see this in a living room, foyer, dining room, or perhaps an office or bedroom.

Rizzy Rugs - Volare VO-781 Wool Hand Tufted Green / Black Contemporary Rug
  • Features:
    Construction: Handmade
    Technique: Tufted
    Material: 100% Wool
    Origin: India
    Collection: Volare
    Color: Green, black
    2' x 3'

To Buy
Head over to CSN Rugs where you can get free shipping to the US and Canada. Plus, keep your eye out for special sales and discounts on their main page!


We have a winner! Thanks to everyone who entered!

And, don't forget to enter my other current giveaways:
Free bottle of Nature's Source cleaner - 3 winners! - ends July 8th
Your choice of a personalized onesie, custom tutu, or two headbands! - ends July 31st

Some bloggy world giveaways!

I love hosting giveaways - and am about to host some fun new ones!

But when I'm not hosting my own, I'm usually peeking around the blogging world and entering everyone else's giveaways. Here are some of my current favorites:

Pedoodles shoes at Natural Mommie

Naturepedic crib cover at Feisty, Frugal, and Fabulous

Piggy Paint All Natural Nail Polish at A Simple Kinda Life

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Another Nature's Source giveaway!

I'm excited to offer another giveaway for free bottles of Nature's Source cleaners!

This time, I will be giving away a free bottle to THREE readers! That's right - three winners this time!

We all want a clean house, and we want it as easy as possible, right? Unfortunately, I think most of us are becoming increasingly aware of the dangers that we may face from toxic chemicals, including the health of our families and our global environment. That's why I get so excited to see big-name companies that make an effort to offer safer, more natural products that still have the power to clean.

Nature's Source cleaners are made by the same company that brings you Scrubbing Bubbles and Windex, yet they're plant-based and almost completely all natural. You can usually find them at any local store that carries your favorite cleaning products.

This contest will end on July 8 and I will pick a winner through Check back to see who wins, and look out for more fun giveaways starting soon - I have some exciting things planned!

To enter this contest:
Go to Nature's Source and find the product that you would like to try if you win, then post it as a comment here. Make sure to leave me your e-mail if you don't have it on your public profile.

For bonus entries:
Do one or all of the following, and leave me a separate comment here for each thing that you do. Make sure you leave a separate comment here for each entry that you earn!

- For FIVE bonus entries, follow my blog via e-mail (then leave FIVE comments here)
- For FIVE bonus entries, follow my blog publicly via subscribtion to a reader (then leave FIVE comments here)
- Write about this giveaway on your blog (and leave me a link to your post)
- Tweet about this on twitter (and leave a link to your twitter account)
- Share a link to this giveaway on your facebook acct (and let me know you did)
- Leave a comment on any other posts on my blog (and leave a comment here for each comment that you post)

And, don't forget to enter my other current giveaways:

Saturday, June 27, 2009

How did YOU choose your cloth diaper?

There are so many cloth diapers, and so many opinions out there! I've been researching cloth diapers for a while and it seems that the more I search, the more options and opinions I find! So, what is your favorite diaper, and why?

I'm hoping to try a Gro Baby cloth diaper - it has organic cotton, and grows with baby. So far munchkin has been a disposable girl (much to my unhappiness), but I think she would look very cute in one of these:

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Two blogs to visit

Want a free two-year subscription to Parents magazine, no strings attached, no credit card needed? Go over to A Frugal Friend where she's posted where to find this great deal!

And, if you're a natural mama like me, you know how much thought it takes to select a safe, quality teether for your babe. And if you're like me, you will be delighted to find these adorable wooden teethers at Little Sapling Toys:

Even better, you can go to A Heart for Home and enter to win one for free!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Coupons 101

Since I've started trying to save money with coupons, I've discovered a wealth of information on the internet. If you're new to the world of couponing, here are some links to get you started. I'll warn you - it is addictive! In the past week or so I've had some great coupon shopping:
- double coupon days at Kmart, where my total was originally $90 and went down to $37 after coupons
- CVS deals where I paid only $1 out of pocket, and ended up with two Schick razors, two tubes of Burt's Bees lip balm, two boxes of General Mills cereal, an economy pack of peroxide, and a box of Excedrin! Plus I have $15 in extra care bucks to spend on my next shopping trip. Woo-hoo!

The theory of serious couponing is simple. Create a stash of coupons from your local Sunday paper, online coupon sites, "blinkies" (the little electronic coupon dispensers in the grocery aisles), "catalinas" (the slips of coupons that print at your grocery checkout), "peelies"(the little pads of tear-off promotional coupons found on the shelf or the product itself), and direct mailings/promotions from the manufacturers. Then match up your stash with weekly sales and promotions at places like Kroger, Meijer, CVS, Walgreens, etc. If you plan carefully and organize each week, you can maximize your savings and get great deals. It isn't unusual to get Crest toothpaste for $.50, free salad dressing, cereal for less than a dollar, etc. The mistake that novice couponers make is that they only keep a few coupons for the products that they already plan on buying, and discard the rest. The key to serious savings is to save all of the coupons for any product that you would ever possibly use, because you never know what will end up in the big sale ad next week!

A simple, well-known way to get coupons is from your local Sunday paper. You might want to buy two or three copies to add up the savings. Even better, find a neighbor, co-worker, or family member who has a subscription and doesn't use the coupons. Some weeks are better than others - to see a preview of each week's coupon offerings, go to a site like Taylor Town Preview. Also this post shows a predicted schedule of which weeks will contain which don't want to buy three copies of the paper only to discover that there are no inserts that week!

Of course, with technology comes a slew of internet coupons to print. The bonus: print and keep only the coupons you want, when you want them. The caveat: some software is finicky and won't work with every computer, and you have to use your own printer and supplies. Also, some retailers will refuse printed coupons due to issues with coupon fraud. If you are willing and able to print online coupons, check these out: - the mother ship of online coupons. They also have a master list of all of their available offers, including some from other sites, here.
Also, visit your favorite company's website because many will offer printable coupons directly from their site.

Many stores have their own coupons and deal offerings.
CVS, for example, has an instant 'rebate' program with their extra-care customer loyalty cards. Each week in their ad they feature several items that have extra care "rewards". When you purchase these items, you will get a CVS "buck" for the reward amount to spend on your next shopping trip. By planning carefully, you can roll these extra care bucks into the next week, purchase more items with rewards, and earn more bucks for the next week. Walgreens and other stores offer similar deals!

Meijer and Target offer printable store coupons on their website, which you can combine with your other manufacturer coupons to get huge savings.

If you're lucky to have a Kroger near you, sign up for a Kroger Plus card. Then go to these sites with your card number to load virtual coupons to your card:
Procter and Gamble's e-saver site
With these sites, your coupons are saved on your card and are automatically deducted after you scan your card at checkout. No coupons to clip, no papers to sort. Even better, these savings are deducted AFTER the sale price and paper coupons are deducted, which stacks your savings!

Some of the best information I've found is on other blogs. Some bloggers out there take this very seriously and can always be trusted to scout out the best deals. If you're new to blog reading, sign up to use a free reader service like Google reader which will keep track of all of your favorite blogs in one place, and make reading your favorites as easy as checking your e-mail. Even better, you can easily search all of your favorite blogs at once for keywords like "cvs" or "kroger" to see who has the latest, greatest deals! Some of my favorites to get you started:
Centsible Sawyer
Deal Seeking Mom
Coupon Cravings
A Frugal Friend
Frugal Coupon Living

Buying diapers or formula for a little one? Don't miss the weekly "best deals" round-up at Baby Cheapskate - thanks to her deal list each week I've recently purchased jumbo packs of Huggies and Pampers for less than $4 each!

And, don't forget Upromise. Instead of saving your money at the register, upromise gives you money in your upromise account when you buy their featured items at the grocery or shop at their preferred online stores. The money you earn is put toward a college fund for you or your designated loved one. Visit their site to load "ecoupons" onto your kroger card that will give you even more cash back into your account.

Are you a natural foods shopper? Stay tuned for an upcoming post on how to save money on organic and "green" shopping choices!

Hope this gets you started! Don't worry - it seems intimidating at first but with just a little effort and research, you can easily save lots of money off your grocery bills. Have any tips that I've forgotten? Feel free to list them below!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Peke Moe?

Our munchkin loves her swaddle. LOVES her swaddle. So much that at almost eight months old she refuses to sleep without it. Despite all of our efforts to "transition" her away from it. Hey - I can't blame her too much - I usually sleep in pj pants with pockets and wake up with my hands tucked in at night!
But there comes a time when you just can't find a swaddle blanket big enough. And you start to have nightmares about visiting her college dorm for her nightly tuck and swaddle.

So I am intrigued to have found the Peke Moe, a sleep sack from New Zealand that is promoted as a good "transition" blanket from a swaddler.

Anyone tried these? The concept is interesting but I hate to spend that much money and have it shipped overseas only to find that it doesn't work at all. Hmmmmm...If you've tried this or have any other suggestions for breaking the swaddle habit, please share!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Win soap nuts!

Hmmmm...soap nuts. Is anyone else intrigued by these? Anyone tried them and recommend them?

I was delighted when I recently discovered the blog at Passionate Homemaking because she offers some great recipes and ideas for living naturally on a budget. And of course I was even more excited to see her new giveaway for soap nuts. If you've been wondering about using soap nuts, this is a great chance to win some and try them for free!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Organic Coupons from Stonyfield

Check out these new coupons for some of your favorite organic brands!

Annie's, Stonyfield, Happy Baby, Newman's Own, and more!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Free mp3's from Amazon!

One of my favorite online resources for purchasing mp3's is through Amazon. The payment and downloads are easy, and once I've downloaded the music I can use it whenever and wherever I want - no need to update the license or wait for it to expire.

Plus, you can often find FREE mp3's to download and sample, and what is better than free music?

Right now, check out Music for Children by the Gotham Wind Symphony - they're offering several of their songs on the album for free!

Not in the mood for children's music? Check out the Savoy Jazz Sampler...Count Basie Orchestra, Dizzy Gillespie, and more for free!

Of course, there is always old skool rap on the Delicious Vinyl Sampler. Bust a move, anyone?
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