Family

15+ Adorable Crafts for Autumn

(All posts may contain affiliate links or sponsored content. Please see my disclosure policy)

Are you looking for some fun craft ideas for the kiddos? The weekend is a great time to get together as a family and spend some quality time together. These 15+ Adorable Autumn Craft Ideas are sure to be hours of fun for everyone!

  1.  Chestnut Animal Art by Kennary
  2. Scarecrow Jars by The Country Chic Cottage
  3. Paper Plate Scarecrow by Paper Plate Fun
  4. Clay Leaf Bowls by Make Life Lovely
  5. Fall Leaf Books by West Coast Mommy
  6. 3D Pumpkins by Confessions of an Overworked Mom
  7. Turkey Treats by 5 Minutes for Mom
  8. Decorated Walking Sticks by Imaginative Homeschooling
  9. Apple Pinch Pots by Red Ted Art
  10. Nature Window Clings by Aileen Cooks
  11. Paper Plate Apples by Mom Wife Busy Life
  12. Candy Corn Craft by Cook Eat Go
  13. Leaf Vein Art by Go Science Kids
  14. Torn Paper Pumpkins by Not So Crafty Mama
  15. Craft Stick Scarecrow by Messy Little Monster

Dream Big with Florida Prepaid College Plans

Help your children dream big with Florida Prepaid College Plans! Use promo code DREAMBIG20 to save on your application fee. This post is sponsored by Florida Prepaid College Plans. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Please see my disclosure policy.

While National College Savings Month may almost be over, Florida Prepaid College Plans still wants to encourage us to be pro-active and to prepare for our children’s future education! As a parent, when I hear the words college and savings together, it can be rather overwhelming. My oldest son Drew started high school this year so that means college will be here before we know it. Brady, my youngest son, is only in third grade, but now is the best time for my husband and I to prepare, plan, and take action for our boys’ future. We like to think that college isn’t just another expense; it is an investment.

I understand that the past few months have been challenging on so many different levels, but particularly financially. Many families, including mine, are trying to save where we can, while others have had to dig into their savings to pay for everyday necessities and living. This has caused us to re-evaluate our finances. There is so much uncertainty, and for many, they don’t know when it will end. In the midst of these uncertain times, my family and I are thankful for the certainty and stability that Florida Prepaid Plans continues to provide. If there is one thing that I am certain of, it is that my boys have brighter, happier days ahead of them and that they will be able to pursue all of their dreams and goals because of the investment that we have made with Florida Prepaid College Plans.

Even in the midst of uncertain times, you too, can help your children plan for their future. Did you know that by starting small and saving just a few dollars each month, you can be financially prepared for a college education for your children? With a Florida Prepaid Plan, you don’t have to worry about the ups and downs of the stock market or college costs; Florida Prepaid will handle it all!

Florida Prepaid College Plans Are Affordable, Flexible and Risk-Free:

Affordable

Since the beginning over 30 years ago, Florida Prepaid has been helping families to affordably save for college. I would encourage you to look at your family’s budget and to see which plan will work best for you. What works for my family may not be the best plan for you and vice-versa. Educate yourself, look at the different investment options, and then go from there. A Florida Prepaid Plan will allow your family to lock in future college costs for less so that your child’s tuition is ready and waiting for them! Enroll today and gain the peace of mind knowing that your child’s future will be taken care of! I am so thankful that we did! Plans start at just $44 a month.

Flexible

Don’t stress about the future, do what you can now and start planning ahead today. Florida Prepaid Plans are very flexible. In fact, they are designed to work where, how and when you need them. Even if your child doesn’t know where they want to attend college, that is no problem. Maybe your child will decide not to attend college at all.  I am happy to tell you that your child has up to 10 years after high school graduation to use a Prepaid Plan. It is also important to note that Prepaid Plans can be transferred to another child or family member, or you can receive a full refund for the amount you paid into it.

If your child decides to attend college outside of Florida, the plan value can be applied to the cost of college in that state. And, if your child receives a scholarship, their Prepaid Plan can be used alongside it. I am going to encourage my boys to apply for as many scholarships as possible!

Risk-Free

Peace of mind is so important especially during these times. You will be happy to know that Florida Prepaid Plans are risk-free, and you will never lose your investment, even if your child decides not to go to college. Florida Prepaid Plans are guaranteed by the state of Florida. The benefit you receive from a plan will never be less than the price you pay for it – you cannot lose money. This is one of the most important factors to our family, and risk-free investments are hard-to-come by! I can tell you that this is a decision you will not regret.

Are you ready to take the next step towards this risk-free investment?

For 30 years, more than 1 million families like mine have chosen Florida Prepaid as their college savings partner, making them the largest, most successful Prepaid Program in the nation! I am proud to tell you that 50,000 Florida residents have enrolled in a Florida Prepaid Plan this year! These families know just how important education is for their children and have taken this risk-free investment. After all, there is nothing to lose!

I share with you my heart not only as a parent, but also as a teacher. I have had the wonderful opportunity this fall to be back in the classroom after taking several years off to raise my boys. I have such a passion for education and being a part of Florida Prepaid College Plans these past several years has made me realize just how much that I have missed teaching. A good education is so important and something that you will never regret giving your children. I love educating and being a part of changing a child’s life forever. As parents, we also have the opportunity to make an investment into our children thanks to help from Florida Prepaid College Plans. Let’s give our children one of greatest gifts ever- the gift of education! The gift to pursue all of their dreams, desires, goals, intents and purposes. I am so proud to be a part of education and to help shape our children into future leaders.

If you enroll in a Florida Prepaid Plan from now through October 31, your $50 application fee will be waived with promo code DREAMBIG20. Saving for college today, will help your children unfold all their dreams and goals tomorrow!

GO HERE to get started now and to enroll using promo code DREAMBIG20. Join my family in making the investment of a lifetime for your children. You will be so glad that you did!

Be sure to follow Florida Prepaid College Plans on FacebookTwitterInstagram and  YouTube to stay up to date with information on open enrollment, tips and promotional offers.

Walgreens Photo: 6 FREE 5×7 Premium Photo Cards!

(All posts may contain affiliate links or sponsored content. Please see my disclosure policy)

Wow! Through September 12, 2020, Walgreens Photo is offering a set of 6 FREE 5×7 Premium Photo Cards with promo code 6PREMIUM at checkout.

Be sure to choose  free in-store pickup to avoid shipping costs.

GO HERE to create your photo cards. The holidays will be here before you know it, so this is a great time to get a few cards for Free!

15 + Fall Leaf Crafts for Kids

(All posts may contain affiliate links or sponsored content. Please see my disclosure policy)

Looking for something fun to do with the kids? Check out these 15+ Fall Leaf Crafts for Kids. There is something for everyone, and these crafts will keep the kids busy for hours! These would also be great if you are a teacher and looking for fall craft ideas!

Fall Leaf Sewing Cards by Kids Activities Blog
Leaf Fox Family by Sweet Silly Sara
Clay Leaf Bowls by Make Life Lovely
Watercolor Leaf Garland by
Stained Glass Fall Leaf Craft by Ginger Casa
Watercolor Leaf Wreath by Happiness is Homemade
Crayon Shaving Leaves by Meaningful Mama
Yarn Wrapped Leaves by Paper and Glue
Leaf People by Fantastic Fun and Learning
Pretty Leaf Garland by Paper and Glue
Thankful Tree Craft by Meaningful Mama
Leaf Peg Dolls by In the Playroom
Paper Leaf Wreath by Polka  Dot Chair
Scrapbook Paper Leaf by Cutesy Crafts
Leaf Rubbings by KC Edventures

Back to School with the New Crayola Colors of the World Crayons!

Disclosure: I was provided with product to facilitate this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.  Please see my disclosure policy)

School is in full swing for our family! Whether your kids are attending a brick and mortar building for school, or you choose to teach them at home virtually, you will more than likely need school supplies. One of my favorite products to shop for every year is crayons. Of course, only the best will do, and hands down, Crayola  wins every year!

This year, Crayola is excited to announce their new Crayola Colors of the World Crayons. With Colors of the World Crayons, children can fully and accurately represent themselves and the world around them through creativity, imagination and self-expression! The 24 newly formulated colors reflect more than 40 global skin tone shades encompassing three undertones – Rose, Almond & Golden – and range in skin tone colors from Extra Light to Deepest. Colors of the World packaging features color panels and authentic color names to help kids find the shade that best represents themselves. Each crayon is wrapped in a gradient skin tone label, with the color name in English, Spanish and French.

Colors of the World Crayons (32 count): In addition to featuring the 24 new skin tone colors, the Colors of the World 32 count crayon pack features four hair and four eye color crayons – perfect for creating a complete self-portrait.

The 24 count is available on Crayola.com for $2.49, and the 32 count is available exclusively at Walmart for $1.77.

In addition to the Crayola Colors of the World Crayons, you can find other Crayola favorites at retailers nationwide. My son Brady loves the Crayola Sketchpads to create his own unique creations!

See Why Our Family Loves Baby Magic Products + Enter to Win $100!

This post is sponsored by Sivan Social. All comments and opinions are my own. Please see my disclosure policy)

I have a little secret for you. My youngest son Brady is 8 years old, and to this day, I still use Baby Magic products on him! When I brought both of my boys home from the hospital, I began using Baby Magic products and instantly fell in love with them. In fact, I love this brand so much that I use the products as well! There is a reason that this brand has been loved by protective parents for over 65 years. 

Baby Magic nourishes baby’s skin with wholesome ingredients and is Dermatologist recommended for a baby’s delicate skin. I also appreciate that Baby Magic products are free of parabens, phthalates, sulfates & dyes. Oh, and did I mention the smell? When you combine things like calendula, coconut oil, and aloe you are sure to have a scent that the entire family will love! When I smell Baby Magic products, it also takes me on a trip down memory lane and to when my boys were tiny babies. The smell of a baby is unlike any other, and I love that Baby Magic allows me to keep those memories alive. 

I encourage you to see for yourself why our family loves Baby Magic products so much, and to check out all of the fabulous products that they have to offer on Amazon. There are lots of options to choose from, but our family favorites are the Baby Magic 2 in-1 Wash and the Baby Magic Calming Lotion.

The Baby Magic 2 in-1 Wash is a tear-free and sulfate-free formula that is enriched with nourishing Calendula and Coconut Oil. It nourishes and cleanses at the same time while being gentle on the skin. My son Brady still hates to get soap in his eyes so this is the perfect solution for him. I love when he gets out of the bathtub and smells so fresh and clean! 

My personal favorite Baby Magic Product is the Calming Body Lotion. If you love the soothing scent of lavender and chammomile, this product is for you. Not only does it smell amazing, but your skin stays super soft and subtle all day long! I also appreciate that the Calming Body Lotion is vitamin-enhanced and hypoallergenic.

As someone who is always trying to find ways to save for my family, I appreciate that Baby Magic Products are budget-friendly. Right now you can sweeten the deal by saving $1 off any Baby Magic Product with the printable coupon HERE.  In addition, select households will receive an additional $1 off Baby Magic coupon from Valpak, so be sure to check your envelope! 

How would you like to win some extra cash? I have an easy way for you to win $100! Savings.com is giving away 10 $100 Visa e-gift cards on behalf of Baby Magic! Just click on the image above to enter! 

Giveaway Details

  • Tuesday, September 1st at 12:00 AM PT to Wednesday, September 30th at 11:59 PM PT.
  • Ten (10) winners will receive a $100 Visa e-gift card.
  • Users enter the giveaway by heading to the Grocery page on Savings.com and submitting their email address on the form on the page.
  • The winners will be chosen through a lottery drawing and notified on Thursday, October 1st via the email address they used to enter.
  • See complete Official Rules for entry instructions, full prize descriptions, restrictions and other important details.

8 Budget-Friendly Ideas for a Summer Birthday Party

(All posts may contain affiliate links or sponsored content. Please see my disclosure policy)

Summer birthday parties are usually accompanied by great weather and holiday vibes. There are lots of great ways you can create exciting and fun parties on a budget for kids and adults alike, so here are a few ideas to take inspiration from:

Kids Parties:

1)    Choosing a Theme

Having a theme makes it easier to take inspiration, so consider what your kid enjoys. Nintendo’s game Animal Crossing is currently a great fun choice for themed parties, as it is a game that’s loved by both kids and adults. Many people enjoy throwing virtual parties in the game itself, but the cute art style and elements within the game give plenty of inspiration for a real-life party.

2)    Entertainment

When it comes to entertaining kids, there needs to be lots of things to do. Take into consideration their hobbies and interests to generate a theme but keep the activities all-inclusive. Scavenger hunts and treasure hunts are great fun, and you can incorporate their interests to create a themed hunt. You can DIY some clue cards and hide ‘gift bags’ for kids to find.

3)    Fun Place Settings and Decor

Characters from their favorite games or tv shows can be used as markers, or even as table place settings. You could use some of their toys, or even models or figures of their favorite characters. Nendoroids are very popular collectible figures, and you can even buy them online, but they also make ideal place markers, scavenger hunt markers, or even gifts. In fact, you could even use one as a fun cake-topper!

Food and Drinks:

4)    Barbeque

BBQs always make for great parties, but if you needed a good excuse to get the BBQ out, a Birthday celebration is definitely the perfect one. Owning a decently sized barbeque and purchasing some ingredients is the only big expense. You can also make this a daytime or evening event, whichever you prefer.

5)    Tropical Party

Fitting perfectly in the theme of Summer, hosting a Hawaiian or tropical themed party can be great fun. Make sure you have plenty of fruit like pineapples, mangoes, and coconuts and set up a cocktail bar too. Just make sure everyone wears their best Hawaiian shirt!

Evening Parties:

6)    Movie Night

The perfect way to celebrate when the sun starts to set is by setting up a screen and projector outside. Having an outdoor, backyard movie night can be great fun. Simply set up your projector and screen, some string lights or candle lanterns, and bring out the comfy blankets and cushions. You should also make sure to get lots of popcorn!

7)    Camping and S’mores

If your backyard is big enough, a great party idea is for everyone to bring along their tents. For an outdoor version of a pajama party, set up a small campfire and roast some s’mores. This is a great way to enjoy a group camping trip in your own backyard. Lots of stores sell campfire kits, but you can also DIY one too!

Summertime Fun:

8)    Pool Party

If you have your own pool, a pool-party is a no-brainer. The perfect thing to go with hot weather is a dip in the pool, so start blowing up your favorite pool inflatables and picking out your swimwear. Some iced drinks and sun chairs and a fun music playlist make a pool party fun and relaxing. If you’re throwing a pool party for kids, make sure everyone can swim and that someone can supervise at all times!

The summer weather means there are plenty of great options available to throw a fun birthday party, even on a small budget. Just don’t forget to wear sun lotion!

7 Reasons Why You Should Open a 529 Florida Prepaid Savings Plan

Are you considering opening a Florida 529 Savings Plan? Be sure to check out this Florida 529 Savings Promo where you can earn up to $50! This post is sponsored by Florida Prepaid College Savings Plans. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Please see my disclosure policy)

Things may look a lot differently for us than they did this time last year, but one thing remains: the unconditional love that we have for our children and knowing that brighter days are ahead for them.

Florida Prepaid College Savings Plans knows that the past few months have been challenging for so many of us, and they are once again here to help us navigate these difficult times. Now more than ever, it is a great time to think about saving for college! Even the smallest amounts of money can add up to so many possibilities for our children!

Through August 16, when you open a Florida 529 Savings Plan and contribute $25, Florida Prepaid will contribute another $25! In addition, for plans set up with an automatic monthly contribution of $25 or more, Florida Prepaid will contribute another $25. Current customers that have not yet enrolled in automatic monthly contributions can also earn $25 if they set up automatic contributions through their online account. That is up to $50 toward your child’s future college education!

As someone who loves to save money, I can’t think of a better way to get my summer started than to save for my boys’ college education. I know that $25 may not sound like a lot, but I am here to tell you that $25 a month saved into a Florida 529 Savings Plan can grow into thousands of dollars for my boys by the time they head off to college. Doesn’t that put a huge smile on your face knowing that just $25 a month can go toward helping your children fulfill all of their future dreams and goals?

7 Reasons Why You Should Open a Florida 529 Savings Plan with Florida Prepaid:

  1. It is Free and easy to sign up.

You had me at Free! Simply choose your investment options and start saving. It is that simple! There is no family income limit, and it is super easy to set up monthly contributions and change them at any time. I also appreciate that you can invite family and friends to contribute toward your college savings goals with Florida Prepaid eGift portal! It takes less than 10 minutes to sign up and get started saving.

  1. Florida 529 Savings Plans are tax-free.

Unlike a savings account or mutual fund that is going to get hit with income taxes, your contributions toward your 529 Savings Plan will earn interest and will not be taxed when the money is taken out to pay for college. Investment earnings are not taxed as long as they are used for qualified education expenses, including tuition, fees, room, board, books and supplies.

  1. Florida 529 Savings Plans can be used in conjunction with your Florida Prepaid College Plan.

These two plans work very well together! While your Prepaid Plan can only be used to pay for tuition and other fees, the Florida 529 Savings Plan can be used to help cover fees, room and board, the cost of books, supplies and equipment.

  1. You don’t have to attend a Florida school to use your Florida 529 Savings Plan.

Despite the name, this plan can be used anywhere in the U.S. to pay for qualified educational expenses. In addition, if you move out of state, your plan travels with you and can be used at most colleges, universities, technical and trade schools and more.

    5. Florida 529 Savings Plans are very FLEXIBLE.

Flexibility is a key factor and one of the things that draws my family and I to this type of plan. It allows us to save for our boys’ college education at any time and we can contribute as much or as little as we want to. There are currently 14 investment options available; you can build your own portfolio or choose the most popular option, the Age-Based Portfolio, which automatically adjusts over time as your child grows closer to college age.

    6. You can use a Florida 529 Savings Plan even if your child doesn’t attend college.

    We know that kids can change their minds on so many things even college! You can close the Plan and withdraw the remaining balance, or the Plan can be transferred to another family member. How awesome is that?

    7. A Florida 529 Savings Plan can also be used toward qualified K-12 expenses.

    Many people don’t realize this, but your 529 Savings Plan can also be used on up to $10,000 annually in qualified K-12 expenses such as tuition and mandatory fees associated with enrollment or attendance at an elementary or secondary public, private, or religious schools.

    Do you still have questions about the Florida 529 Savings Plan? Florida Prepaid College Plans is hosting a 10-minute Webinar on July 23 at 12 Noon EST where they will be answering lots of college savings questions. You can register for the free webinar HERE: https://bit.ly/31BUGKz

    What are you waiting for? Make a splash this a summer and start saving for college today! Remember, you can get up to $50 for FREE when you sign up for a Florida 529 Savings Plan. You have to HURRY though as this promo is only good through August 16!

    Be sure to follow Florida Prepaid College Plans on FacebookTwitterInstagram and  YouTube to stay up to date with information on open enrollment, tips and promotional offers.

    The Home Depot is Offering Free Kids Workshop Kits!

    (All posts may contain affiliate links and/or sponsored content. Please see my disclosure policy)

    You may have heard that The Home Depot has cancelled their Kid’s Workshops due to the current pandemic. They recently announced that in place of these workshops, many stores will be handing out Workshop Kits for FREE! You can GO HERE to find a Home Depot location near you, or I would suggest that you give them a call to see if they are participating. 

    Reach for the Stars with Florida Prepaid College Plans and Scholastic!

    This post is sponsored by Florida Prepaid College Plans. Use Florida Prepaid College Plans promo code SWEET1920 for your application fee to be waived. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Please see my disclosure policy. 

    Isn’t it amazing how life can change in an instant? If you would have told me at the beginning of 2020 that I would be teaching my boys at home I probably would have laughed at you. We were so busy in the hustle and bustle of our everyday lives of school, sports, and extra-curricular activities that when we were required to stop and be at home all of the time, life definitely took an unexpected turn that I was not prepared for.

    Life certainly hasn’t been easy these past few months and there have been some tears along the way. In the midst of our circumstances, I have chosen to be positive and to find happiness in the situation. This has actually been a much-needed time of refreshment, reflection, and family bonding. Sometimes we need to slow down so that we can reflect on all that we have been blessed with. One day when the boys are gone, I will look back and cherish the memories that we made while we were together. I have loved the long walks, talks with my boys, and just the extra time that we have had together as a family.

    Drew is heading off to high school next year and before I know it, he will be college bound. Brady will be in 3rd grade, and that certainly doesn’t seem possible! Didn’t I just bring him home from the hospital? I am certainly excited for both of my boys and know that they have a bright future ahead. I am so thankful that they can attain their future dreams and goals and reach for the stars! Thanks to help from Florida Prepaid College Plans, these dreams and goals will one day become a reality.

    Florida Prepaid understands this is an unprecedented and challenging time for families, and they are here to help us through it! I am so excited to announce that they have teamed up with Scholastic to offer at-home-learning resources! For the past few months, Scholastic has been working hard to create a wide variety of at-home learning resources, and this new joint effort with Florida Prepaid is specifically designed to help young children develop their math and social studies skills to learn about jobs, money and their future. As a parent, I can use all the help that I can get these days, and I can’t think of a better way to enhance my children’s learning than with Scholastic resources. We personally have loved Scholastic books for years, so I am thrilled to use their online learning resources to help keep my boy’s minds active while at home. There are fun, step-by-step activities for PreK through 2nd Grade. Visit http://www.scholastic.com/icanbeanything/ to download worksheets, activities and more!

    Speaking of the future, did you know that Florida Prepaid College Plans has extended Open Enrollment through May 31? Use promo code SWEET1920 for your $50 application fee to be waived!

    Now, more than ever, it is a great time to stop and think about your children’s future education. For as little as $44 a month your child can be on the way to a brighter tomorrow! I love the hope that Florida Prepaid continues to provide to families so that we can rest assured that our children’s college education is safe, secure, and guaranteed by the state of Florida. Join the over 1 million Florida families who have said yes and invested in their children’s future education. With the waived enrollment fee, there really is nothing to lose!

    In addition, I wanted to remind you that Florida Prepaid has deferred Prepaid Plan dates until July 2020 to provide flexibility to families as they navigate the challenges related to COVID-19. The Board is also deferring all payments for April, May and June for current customers. All payments will resume July 2020, and payment schedules will be extended by three months. Families can continue to make payments as previously scheduled if they choose to do so. For 24/7 account access, please login to your account at myfloridaprepaid.com. Routine account functions can be completed online, including making one-time payments, adjusting recurring payments and adding new Plans. If you prefer, you can call the wonderful customer service team at 1-800-552-4723 and they will be happy to assist with any questions or concerns that you may have about your plan(s).

    I am so excited for my boys and their future aspirations, dreams and goals! What about you? Why not help your children reach for the stars and to dream big! Sign up today for a Florida Prepaid College Plan. You will be so glad that you did! Use promo code SWEET1920 to waive your application fee. Also, don’t forget to check out http://www.scholastic.com/icanbeanything/ to download worksheets, activities and more. These resources are perfect for families at home, and they will give you the extra confidence that you need as you continue to teach your children. High-five to all of you awesome parents! We’ve got this!

    Be sure to follow Florida Prepaid College Plans on FacebookTwitterInstagram and  YouTube to stay up to date with information on open enrollment, tips and promotional offers.