What Was In My Amazon Baby Registry Welcome Box

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When I created my baby registry on Amazon, I realized I could receive a free Welcome Box. I had heard mixed reviews, so I decided to tell you exactly what was in my free Welcome Box.

Dr. Brown’s Anti-Colic Bottle

I received a full sized Dr. Brown’s Anti-Colic Bottle. We wanted to use these bottles, regardless, so I was so excited to see this bottle in my Welcome Box. These bottles are not cheap, either!

Muslin Swaddle Blanket

In my Welcome Box, I received a really nice Muslin Blanket. Once again, these blankets are not cheap, and, with each wash, they become softer. These Muslin blankets are incredibly popular for moms everywhere.

Pampers Wet Wipes

I was pleasantly surprised to see that I got a full sized pack of Pamper’s Wet Wipes. These wipes are high quality and often used among many families.

Burt’s Bees Onesies

I received 2 Burt’s Bees Onesies. These Onesies are completely organic and incredibly soft! Burt’s Bees Onesies are also high quality, expensive products that I received for free.

MAM Bottle

I received a 5 oz. MAM Bottle in my Welcome Box. We had not considered these bottles before receiving it in the box.

Miscellaneous Samples

Along with these awesome full sized products, I received several samples. I got a pack of 5 size 1 Pamper’s Diapers, baby safe laundry detergent, lotion, baby shampoo and soap, breast pads, and a book full of coupons!


Regardless of the Amazon Welcome Gift, an Amazon baby registry is incredible for distant friends and family members, or anyone with Amazon Prime. It is completely free to create a registry, so all expecting parents out there, create your registry here!

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What I Wish I Knew Before I Got A Dog

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I love puppies, which is why we have so many dogs! The first puppy I ever had was a real pain in the butt, though. These are the tips I wish someone would have told me before I got my first puppy.

Adopt – Don’t Shop

Right before my husband and I got married, we decided to get our first pet together. I knew I wanted a Golden Doodle, so I was hoping to find one “discounted.” This was my first mistake. I went on Craigslist and found a listing for a small, fluffy “Goldendoodle” puppy. He was only $400. Had I been wiser, I would have sensed the red flags going off, saved up for the dog I really wanted, or adopted a dog instead.

We ended up getting a Border Collie Golden Retriever mix, whom we named Duke. He really is beautiful, and he was probably actually worth $400, but he wasn’t what we bought. Over the years, I realized that buying a dog is almost never worth the cost. I would have rather adopted a dog, rather than purchasing one.
Duke was actually in horrible condition when we got him home. He had a bad stomach condition, from which he has never truly recovered. He is more prone to worms and other stomach infections. Due to his belly troubles as a baby, he developed heart worms despite taking regular preventives.

Of course, any of this could happen to a shelter dog, but at least you will be completely aware of the health of your dog before you get him home. Plus, your dog will likely not cost $400.

All of this to say, consider adopting. Shopping for a dog isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but I wouldn’t do it without much consideration.

Potty Training is Hard

When we first brought Duke home, he was only 6 weeks old. He was not, to say the least, potty trained. At the time, we lived in a 1 bedroom apartment, and we had no idea what we were in for.

We did not have a size-appropriate crate, so crate training was out of the question. What a mistake! Instead, we locked him inside the bathroom during the day, where he pooped, peed, and chewed on everything. It was a disaster. We had no structure.

Before you get your first pup, have a size appropriate crate for crate training and night time. You do not want you crate to be much bigger than your dog. This might mean you have to upgrade your crate as your dog grows.

If your crate is too big, your puppy will poop on one side and sleep on the other, defeating the crate training. You want a crate that is big enough for your puppy to sleep, and nothing else. Do remember your puppy can only hold his bladder for an hour or two at a time, so be prepared to come home to messes, if you do not take him out to potty.
It is important that your puppy spends most of his time in his crate, while crate training. Luckily, we taught Duke to potty outside, but it took a long time.

Immunizations are Important

When we first got Duke, he had had his first rounds of immunizations (Canine Spectra 5), and we didn’t give him anything else until we moved to a new town a year later. He got his Rabies vaccination, first, and the next year, we actually realized how important it was for him to finish his immunizations.

Be sure you give your dogs all necessary immunizations. It is not just a money scam; they are important.

Quality Food Matters

Naively, I thought any food was fine for my dog. I was wrong. It actually wasn’t until after Duke got his immunizations that I realized I was doing him a disservice by giving him cheap food.

Many dog food brands end up essentially being McDonald’s for dogs. They lack key nutrients, contain dyes and chemicals, and are hard on bellies. We now buy Rachel Ray’s dog food for our dogs.

If you can’t afford quality food for your dog, you should reconsider adopting.

Pets Are Forever

Remember, puppies are a lot of work. They require constant attention, and they make huge messes. In the long run, your dog can end up costing you thousands of dollars. Make sure you are ready for that commitment before you adopt. Please, do not adopt a pet if you are not committed to it for a lifetime. Pets are not until you have a baby, move, or change your mind. Do not adopt a pet unless you are ready to keep it until it dies. Pets and babies can coexist.

Broke Girl Recipes

We’ve all been there. Heck, I’m there at least once a month! When the money is tight, but you still get hungry, make these tasty recipes.

Lemon Butter Pasta

For this recipe, you will need:
– thin spaghetti (1 lb for $1)
– 1 lemon ($0.25)
– butter (4 sticks for $1)

I love this recipe, to be completely honest. We eat this weekly, even right after payday. In total, you can make 6+ services for less than $3. Not bad!

Lemon Butter Pasta

  • 1 lb thin spaghetti
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 lemon (juiced)
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  1. Cook your spaghetti with salted water until al dente. Drain spaghetti and add 1 stick of butter, the juice of 1 lemon, and salt and pepper to taste.

Cheesy Broccoli Rice

For this recipe, you will need:
– frozen broccoli ($1)
– rice ($1.30)
– cheddar cheese ($4)

This is another staple in our household. It’s tasty, quick, and a crowd pleaser!

Cheesy Broccoli Rice

  • 1 lb rice (cooked)
  • 1 bag frozen broccoli
  • cheddar cheese (shredded)
  1. combine cooked rice, frozen broccoli, and cheddar cheese in a casserole dish. Bake for 15-25 minutes at 350 degrees, or until golden brown.

Sloppy Joes

For this recipe, you will need:
– 1 lb ground beef ($4)
– 1 c. ketchup (<$1)
– 1 TBS mustard (<$1)
1 Tbs brown sugar (<$1)

My husband loves this recipe because it only has 4 ingredients!

Sloppy Joes

  • 1 lb ground beef (browned)
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 TBS mustard
  • 1 TBS brown sugar
  1. Brown the ground beef, drain oil, and add ketchup, mustard, and brown sugar. Mix together and simmer fo 20 minutes.

Cheesy Fries

For this recipe, you will need:
– frozen French Fries ($1)
– cheddar cheese ($4)
– pickled jalapeños (<$1)

These fries are a favorite of mine! They remind me of the State Fair, with the comfort of home.

Cheesy Fries

  • 5 lb frozen fries (baked)
  • cheddar cheese
  • jalapeños
  • bacon bits
  1. Top pre-baked fries with cheddar cheese and bake until cheese is melted. Top with Jalapeños and bacon bits. 

Vegetable Fried Rice

For this recipe, you will need:
– 1 lb rice ($1.30)
– soy sauce ($1)
– mixed vegetables, frozen ($1)

Yet another favorite. Can you tell I love all of these recipes? This recipe is great because it doesn’t feel like a “cheap” recipe!

Vegetable Fried Rice

  • 1 lb rice (cooked)
  • soy sauce (to taste)
  • mixed vegetables (frozen)
  1. Combine the cooked rice, mixed vegetables, and soy sauce in a sauce pan that has been greased. Sauté on medium heat until golden brown and crispy.

Legit Baby Freebies

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As an expecting mother, I cannot get enough freebies. I look for them constantly! Here, I have compiled a list of legit baby freebies. This list will not require you to sign up for email newsletters, and none of these websites give off that “sketchy” feel. Those who have searched for freebies know what I’m talking about!

You will have to pay shipping for these items, but the shipping is not much compared to the product! Some of these freebies have been recruited from Moms&Crafters and Freebies For Baby.

Belly Button Band

Body Band

The Belly Band has two options: a Body Band for $40 (pictured above), or a Belly Band (pictured below). Both are meant to extend your pant-life throughout maternity.

The Body Band covers your belly and your unbuttoned pre-pregnancy pants. The Belly Band attaches to your pre-pregnancy pants. The Belly Band is adjustable, so it offers security for that “in-between” stage, where you aren’t big enough to wear maternity clothes, but you’re too bloated to wear your normal pants comfortably.

Use the code: FREEBIES4BABY for $39 off your order

Belly Band

Breast Pads

Here, you can get Breast Pads (4 for $7) in multiple patterns and a Breast Feeding Bracelet ($7). Breast Pads are essential for any breast feeding moms, and the bracelet can help you remember which breast you recently fed out of. As we know, new moms usually can’t remember much for a few weeks, so this bracelet is great and comfy. I have already stocked up on both!

Use the code: FREEBIES4BABY for $35 off your purchase.

Breast Feeding Bracelet
Breast Pads

3 Free Ruffle Buns

Ruffle Buns are cute diaper covers, and you can get 3 for free with this code: FREEBIES4BABY

Ruffle Buns

5 Free Baby Leggings

These baby leggings are great for winter weather! Use the code: PJBABY for $50 off your order. This website also sells bibs and gift sets!

Baby Leggings

Free Carseat Canopy

I already indulged in this freebie! This canopy is high quality, soft, and otherwise wonderful. There are several fabric options, which will allow you to customize the canopy for optimal results. A carseat canopy is a must for new babies, so why not get it free?

Use the code: PJBABY for $50 off your purchase.

Car Seat Canopy

Nursing Pillow

I hear moms rave about these pillows, though I have not bought one yet. With the code PJBABY, you can get this 100% free!

Free Sling-Style Baby Carrier

This was one of the first things I bought when we found out we were expecting. I love this sling! It is durable, yet soft enough for a baby’s sensitive skin.

Use the code: PJBABY for $40 off.

Baby Carrier

Amazon Prime Goodie Box

I’ve already gotten my Prime Goodie Box, and it was cram packed with awesome things! I got a bottle, 2 onesies, a muslin swaddle wrap, diapers, full-sized wipes, lotion, shampoo, breast pads, and coupons!

You have to be a prime member to receive your box of goodies, but you can use a Prime Free Trial! Look for the link below to get your free trial. It is 100% free for 30 days, and you can cancel at any time!

To start your registry, go here!

The Ultimate Valentine’s Day Gift Giving Guide for Men

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It’s that time of year again! For some of you, this Valentine’s Day will be the first in your relationship; for other, this will be another year where you adorn your man with what he truly deserves. This gift giving guide gives tips depending on the length and commitment of each relationship.

“We’ve only gone on a few dates”

So maybe you just started talking to your Valentine, or you’ve only gone on a few days. Do not worry! There are still tons of gifts that you can get him, without coming on too strong.

Bamboo Mug

This Bamboo Mug is useful, affordable, and masculine. Your Valentine will love this!

The North Face Ball Cap

This ball cap by The North Face is cute and classy. It has the affordable price with the high quality aspects of a name brand.

Gratitude Journal

This Gratitude Journal for Men is a great gift for any occasion, but it is also and incredible Valentine’s Day gift.

“We’ve been dating for 6 months”

Beard Grooming Kit

This Beard Grooming Kit is great for any man who likes to keep up his appearances. Though this kit is designed for beards, it can be used for any hair!

Survival Gear Kit

This TRSCIND Survival Kit is perfect for the outdoor man! It comes with a paracord bracelet, a compass, a knife, a fire starter, a flashlight with adjustable modes, including strobe, heavy duty pen, compact wire saw and wood cutter, emergency blanket, compact carrying case, whistle, a heavy duty knife, a credit card knife, and carabiner clip. Is that not a crazy good deal for only $30?

Date Night

Treat your man to a date night, your treat! Take him to dinner, a movie, and then coffee after. Go bowling and out for ice cream down town, or even take him to an amusement park! Get creative and have fun doing what you guys love to do!

“We’ve been together forever”

Engraved Yeti

Engraved Yeti’s are my go to gift! I am a Yeti advocate because their cups are high quality. Ice will stay in my mug for over 24 hours, and coffee will stay scalding hot all day long. That’s a winner to me! Engrave your man’s name into his new Yeti, and I promise, he will love it!

Fossil Watch

Fossil is a reputable brand that always puts out high quality products. This Fossil Watch has an antique and rustic look with a modern, leather design. A few years ago, I bought my husband a watch like this, and he loves it! Your man will love it, too.

Beats Pill by Dre

The Beats by Dre brand is incredible. The Beats Pill is perfect for parties of any variety, even just cleaning on a Saturday morning! I have earnestly admired this brand since they came out, and I have never been disappointed. All of my Beats products have lasted for over 5 years, with hard wear. I highly recommend this product.

Romantic Gifts

50 Things I Love About You

This can be a great way to express creativity and make your man feel like 100 bucks! The day of Valentines day, decorate his planner, his shoes, his tooth brush, his steering wheel, and even his laptop with little notes letting you know how much you love him and why you love him. There’s nothing like feeling appreciated!

52 Uncommon Date Night Ideas

Spice up your relationship with these 52 Uncommon Dates! Try a new one each weekend.

Love Vouchers

These Love Vouchers can be fun and exciting. Your man can cash in a voucher for a back massage or a night out without responsibilities!

Bonus

Some of my teenage students asked to chime in some suggestions for this post. Here are some of their best suggestions on what you should get your man for Valentine’s day:

1. cologne
2. a nice t-shirt
3. football jersey
4. “open when” envelopes
5. chocolate covered strawberries
6. Edible Arrangements
7. gift cards
8. socks
9. a bae-cation (go on a vacation with your bae)
10. a massage

How do you plan on spoiling your Valentine this year? Comment below!

Super Bowl Watch Party Recipes

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Hello, all! I know many of you are planning to throw a watch party this Sunday. Here are a few of my absolute favorite Super Bowl finger food recipes!

Copycat El Acapulco Queso

My grandpa has had this family recipe for years, and it has constantly received complement after complement. It is a tangy yet creamy version of the ever loved Mexican restaurant queso. Like El Acapulco’s queso, this recipe is a yellow cheese dip. You and all your guests will love it!

For this recipe, you will need:
– 4 Tbs flour
– 1 stick of butter
– 1 + c. milk
– 1 can Rotel
– 24 slices of American cheese
– 1 tsp cumin seed
– 1 tsp ground cumin
– 1 tsp chili powder

You will start by making a roux. This is incredibly easy. Melt the butter over medium-high heat, and add the flour. Cook the butter and flour mixture for a minute – your flour should begin to look golden brown. This roux will make your queso creamy. If you were to skip this step, you would have a soup, rather than a dip.

Add 1 cup milk and Rotel to your roux. You will mix this all together, to blend in the roux with the liquids. At this time, you will add the cumin seed, ground cumin, and chili powder.

Once it is all mixed, You will add the cheese, one slice at a time, constantly stirring. Once everything is mixed together, continue stirring until the dip is the consistency you prefer. You will add more milk during this time. You just add as much milk as you prefer. I like my cheese dip to be really creamy, so I usually add around 2-3 cups of milk.

Serve immediately with tortilla chips or Doritos!

Homemade Tortilla Chips

This recipe comes from Live Healthy, and it is incredibly easy, tasty, and fresh. These chips will go wonderfully with any dip or guacamole!

For this recipe, you will need:
– flour tortillas
– olive oil
– onion powder
– garlic powder
– dried parsley
– dried basil
– salt and pepper

You will start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees. You will then cut your tortillas into fours. Lightly cover the tortillas with olive oil, and sprinkle your tortillas with onion powder, garlic powder, parsley, basil, salt, and pepper. You want to add seasoning before baking your chips.

After your tortillas have been seasoned, bake your tortillas until they are crispy and golden brown. This will be about 10-15 minutes.

The chips are easily adapted to your preference, too. If you prefer spicy chips, you can top your tortillas with chili powder, paprika, salt, and pepper. You can also make dessert chips with sugar and cinnamon.

Copycat BWW Spicy Garlic Wings

I love making this recipe for every event! The only thing you actually have to make is the Spicy Garlic sauce, which can be preserved in the freezer for months.

For this recipe, you will need:
– fried boneless chicken wings
– 1/2 c. Red’s Cayenne hot sauce
– 3/4 tsp garlic powder
– 1/2 tsp sugar
– 1/4 tsp black pepper
– 1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
– 1 tsp water

Begin by combining all ingredients in a saucepan on low heat. Simmer for 20 minutes, and apply to fully cooked wings. Serve with Ranch Dressing or Blue Cheese Dressing.

Ham and Cheese Sliders

Carrie from Eating on a Dime really out did herself with this one. This is such a crowd pleaser, and though it isn’t great for a diet, it tastes so good! You can make a bunch of these little sliders at a time, making it perfect for a crowd.

For this recipe, you will need:
– 12 King’s Hawaiian Rolls
– 3/4 c. melted butter
– 1 Tbs Dijon Mustard
– 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
– 1 tsp brown sugar
– 1 tsp Poppy Seeds
– 2 tbs dried minced onions
– thin sliced deli ham
– thin sliced Swiss cheese

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and combine butter, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, poppy seeds, and minced onions. Set aside.

Slice your Hawaiian rolls to make a sandwich. You will do this in one piece, instead of breaking the rolls into individuals. This saves a ton of time.

Place the bottom of your Hawaiian roll “sandwich” inside the bottom of a baking dish. You will then layer the thinly sliced ham and cheese atop the rolls. Place the top of your “sandwich” on the cheese, and top with your butter mixture.

Bake for 20 minutes, or until the rolls are golden brown. Cut along the original roll lines and serve.

I hope you love these recipes! Share your favorites below. Don’t forget to like, follow, and share this page for more content like this!

New Merch!

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Hello, all! As some of you know, I have created my own line of vegan beauty and pet products. Here, I will give you a little background information on these new products!

Vegan Shampoo for Dry and Damaged Hair

The Damaged Hair Shampoo line has two scents: Dry Scalp Original, and Orange Mist. These two shampoos vary slightly for great results. Both contain a vegan soap base, Organic Coconut Oil, Vitamin E Oil, water, Cornstarch, and essential oils.

The Dry Scalp Original is ideal for people who struggle to keep dandruff and itchy scalp at bay. This contains additional oils and essential oils that nurture the scalp back to a healthy Ph level, while enhancing the hairs nature shine.

Orange Mist has fewer oils than the Dry Scalp Serum, and Orange scents to fill your shower and hair with a pleasing aroma that will linger for hours. This shampoo is designed for those who need more moisture in their hair, but do not struggle with dandruff.

The Dry Scalp and Orange Mist shampoo is ideal for dry and damaged hair, so using this shampoo on silky hair might result in greasy hair. When I tested this shampoo, my hair became greasy earlier than it usually would, because I have naturally oily hair. My husband, however, struggles with dandruff, and these shampoos made a world of difference in his scalp comfort.

Vegan Shampoo for Oily Hair

I have oily hair naturally, so I was so excited to create my Greasy Girl line. Right now, it only has one original scent.

This shampoo contains a vegan shampoo base, Water, Cornstarch, Vitamin E Oils, and some Essential Oils. This nourishes the scalp, and helps prevent dandruff and itchy scalp, while maintaining the cleanliness necessary to avoid excess grease and oils.

This is the only shampoo I use anymore, because it works perfectly for my hair type. Is there a specific vegan scent or hair type you would like to see added to this line? Let me know in the comments!

Vegan Peppermint Lip Balm

I created this lip balm around Christmas time, and I genuinely love it. It tingles when I put it on, which is a must for me. I can’t use most lip balms because I have sensitive skin, but this balm doesn’t cause irritation.

This lip balm smells great and is cute, but the real reason it exists is because I have chapped lips all the time. ALL THE TIME! Why? I lick my lips and don’t drink enough water. You might be like me if you often replace water with coffee. Any sleep deprived coffee drinkers out there? My lips were so chapped, and I hated using big name-brand lip balms because most contain chemicals and materials that cause your lips to peel even more than ever. Big companies do this to keep you coming back. My balm doesn’t have anything like this; your lips won’t peel any more than they naturally do, and there aren’t any harmful chemicals.

You might be wondering, “what exactly is in this lip balm that makes it so great?” This balm is packed with the highest quality, all-natural ingredients. It contains soy wax, Organic Coconut Oil, Vitamin E Oil, and skin-safe essential oils.

Puppy Poo” Shampoo & Conditioner

No, there isn’t any real puppy poo in this shampoo and conditioner combo, but it is completely vegan and natural. It is safe for sensitive skin, and the essential oils help keep fleas and ticks at bay (though we aren’t certified on the last part). We have used this shampoo and conditioner on our dogs for a while, and they love it (well, as much as they can love bath time)! This contains a soap base, water Coconut Oil, Vitamin E Oil, and essential oils. This shampoo and conditioner is thinner than our other shampoos, making it easier to spread across dirty, little puppy bodies.

This is safe to use on cats, as well, though you might gain a few extra scratches from this attempt. In all honesty, this shampoo is made at human-grade, so you could even use it if you wanted! It is vet and groomer approved.

Pet Paw Balm

Our last and favorite item is a pet paw balm. We use this on our cats, dogs, and even our foster dogs. They all love it! I have used so many different brands of Paw Balm over the years, and our pets always started licking their paws after application. This is normal, and doesn’t really affect the medicinal affects of the balm, but I was concerned because I didn’t really know what was in other brands.

It is shocking how many chemicals and toxins are allowed in pet supplies, so I quickly started making my own, vegan pet balm. This is safe for your pets to lick or even eat (though we don’t recommend it)! It is similar to our lip balm, meaning, you could even use this on your mouth. Our balm contains a soy wax base, Coconut Oil, and Vitamin E Oil.

Our pets are our family, so we only use the highest quality ingredients in our pet products. What else would you like to see added to our pet line? Comment below!

Use this coupon code for 25% off our Merchandise: WORDPRESS

If you are interested in purchasing one of these items, you have options! You can purchase through Etsy here, or you can purchase directly through this website here.

Weight Watchers Favorite Recipes from the Pros!

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This post contained images from Pexels.com, as well as from members of Weight Watchers. All members have given permission for their images and stories to be used.

Hey, guys! This week, I took to Weight Watchers (WW) Connect and asked the pros what their favorite recipes were. After all, these are the people that have lost the weight and kept it off, and these are their go to recipes!

0 Point Soup by Cheryl Gantz

Cheryl has a cup of this soup every morning, and she never gets tired of it. It is filling, delicious, and packed with nutrients!

For this recipe, you will need:
– 1 quart low sodium, low fat chicken or bone broth
– chopped carrots, onions, celery, and mushrooms
– shredded chicken breast
– 2 eggs, beaten (think egg drop soup)

You will bring all ingredients to a boil and simmer until your vegetables are fully cooked (20 minutes).

Rachael’s 4 point Breakfast Delight

This is Rachael’s breakfast!

Rachael’s Breakfast recipe is gaining popularity for good reason! She first discovered a similar recipe in a “little French Bistro,” and her recreation is a close dupe! It has all the nutrition we need for a good day!

For this recipe, you will need:
– 1 Tbs olive Garden Italian Dressing
– 14 gm of mozzarella cheese
– 1 c. Arugula
– 1 egg
– 7 gm Kirkland’s Signature Crumbled bacon

Beat the egg, add the cheese and bacon and scramble like an omelet. Clean the arugula and dress with the Italian Dressing. Enjoy!

2 point Skinny Sundae by Rosie

Rosie’s Skinny Sundae

Rosie makes this dessert when she is craving something sweet, and she thinks this might actually be the best dessert she has ever eaten!

For this recipe, you will need:
– Fat Free Greek Yogurt
– 1 tsp instant cheesecake pudding mix
– Unsweetened Cherry flavored Applesauce
– CoolWhip for toppings
– Chocolate Chips for topping

Mix together the greek yogurt, cheesecake pudding mix, and the applesauce. Remember greek yogurt and applesauce are no points, so you can add as much as you want! Top with whipped cream and a few chocolate chips.

6 point Pizza – Topped Chicken by littletomato00

Littotomato00 considers this recipe a “staple” in her house. It is easy for a quick, after work dinner, and it curbs the cravings for junk food like pizza!

For this recipe, you will need:
– 2 chicken breasts
– 2 TBS mozzarella cheese
– 10 turkey pepperonis
– 1 tsp pizza sauce

Grill your chicken and top with pizza sauce, cheese, and pepperonis. Bake until cheese is melted at 350 degrees, and enjoy!

4 Point Protein Waffles and Ice Cream by lbarber0713

Lbarber0713 has made several versions of these protein waffles, and we think this one might just be our favorite! This recipes makes 3 mini waffles and it is topped with red velvet Enlightened Ice cream.

For this recipe, you will need:
– 1 scoop Bowmar Nutrition Protein (frosted cookies flavored)
– 1 full egg
– 1/2 tsp baking powder

Mix all ingredients and bake in waffle maker. This recipes makes 3 mini waffles and it is topped with red velvet Enlightened Ice cream.

Don’t forget to like, follow, and share this page, and as always, thanks for joining us!

Budgeting on a Teacher’s Salary

Teachers make a fair salary, but we are far from wealthy, monetarily that is. My family relies heavily on my income, with my husband going to College and only working part time, budgeting is the only way we get by.

After some time, we have almost completely mastered the art of budgeting, so I am going to share some of our tips, tricks, and editable documents that you can use for your budgets, even if you aren’t a teacher!

There are no affiliated links on this page!
Some/All images come from Pexels.com – the royalty free collection of stock photos.

According to Every Dollar, which is an incredible app for tracking spending, we should only spend a certain amount of our income on food, housing, charity, etc.

If your budget does not look exactly like this, that’s okay! I know ours doesn’t. Some people have more debt than other, like student loans. My resources seem to be useful for every individual in every income bracket.

Bill Due Date Calendar

I create my Bill Due Date Calendar every month, depending on the bills that we have coming in. We put this calendar on our phones and on our fridge. This helps us keep track of what money is coming in and going out, so we know what we should and should not spend.

You can download the editable calendar that I use below.

I like to check my Bill Due Date Calendar anytime I make a purchase. With this method, I never overdraft anymore!

The amount we pay in bills varies by the month (sometimes even the week)! It is important to create a new calendar each month, if your bills are like ours. I tried to just use one “generic” calendar but I got confused and ended up overspending. For me, the extra effort makes a huge difference.

Spending Log

Do you remember the old school Check Book Register that came with a stack of checks? Some people still use them, but I prefer to keep a spending log on my phone or computer. I have recently discovered Anastasia’s digital log on Etsy. Hers is cute, functional, cheap, and reusable! It is a digital download that you can keep reusing month after month.

You can use this code DIYDIARY10 to get 10% off your order for this digital spending log! But hurry because this code is only valid until February 3rd, 2019!

Digit App

So this is a new one for me! I have recently downloaded the Digit App, which rounds up each of your bank transactions to create a “Rainy Day” savings. You can also create a “goal,” which you can save toward.

I was originally concerned about transferring too much out per day, but you can even set up a daily transfer limit. Unlike typical savings accounts, you can withdraw your money as many times as you want and as often as you want. You even earn 1% interest every 100 days.

My favorite feature, however, is that Digit will transfer money from your “Rainy Day” savings to your checking account if you are about to overdraft!

This app does cost around $3 a month after your first 100 days. At least you can see if you like it before you buy it!

I hope you find these tips useful, and I would love to hear some of your favorite budgeting tips! 

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7 Ways to Make Your Pre-Loved Home Look New

According to the National Realtor Association, over 91% of homeovers look for a pre-loved home, rather than build a new home. This likely because of the many advantages of buying an older home. The timeline of purchasing a home is drastically shorter than that required to build a house. Though, new houses have a certain lustre to them, here, hopefully you can benefit from my tips to make your new-to-you home look and feel as new as it should.

I tried to make these tips beginner friendly, inexpensive, and quick! Enjoy!

7 Ways to Make Your Pre-Loved Home Look New

1. Paint

This seems obvious, doesn’t it? Though a good paint job can make an enormous difference, I am not talking about simply painting your living room. No! Paint the things that do not immediately catch the eye, such as your closets, your baseboards, and your window seals. These small details will make a huge difference in making your home feel new!

We also painted many of our ceilings! It was tedious, a bit messy, but totally worth it! We did this on the ceiling our carport, as well.

2. Update Hardware

One of the first things we did in our new home was install new door knobs and cabinet pulls. We picked out affordable, yet durable, door knobs, cabinet pulls, and door hinges from Lowes. This completely updated the look of our hallway, kitchen, and bathroom for under $50. 

*I would never purchase door knobs or hinges from a store that does not specialize in home improvement materials. They will not likely hold up or work effectively. You will not save enough money to make it worth it!

3. Update Light Fixtures 

We updated the 70s style chandeliers in our living room, to replace it with a stylish ceiling fan. For us, comfort was more important that elegance in this aspect. It made a huge difference in appearances, regardless, and it made us much more comfortable!

We also added hanging lights in the hall way, the bedrooms, and the kitchen, instead of the standard recessed lighting that was originally in the home. I did not dispose of the original fixtures though! These things, though they are tacky, are antiques. 

We love the look and feel of the new light fixtures because they really updated the room.

4. Sand and Re-stain Woodwork 

Over time, natural wood becomes scratched and loses its finish. We sanded and re-stained all of our baseboards, window seals, and door facings. We picked a stain that was close and complementary to the original stain color. We were sure to use 240 or higher grit sandpaper to ensure a smooth finish. Be sure to go with the grain of the wood, sand until the wood is completely soft, and seal the stain with polyurethane. This gives a professional look to old wood.

5. Add Peel and Stick Laminate

Peel and stick laminate is AWESOME! There are so many options for any and all projects. We installed peel and stick laminate over the ugly linoleum floors in our bathroom. We bought this laminate from Lowes for less than $100! This laminate allowed for a natural tile  look because it could be grouted. We get tons of compliments on our floors. I would do it again and again!

There are even more ways to use peel and stick laminate, though. You can make an easy, waterproof backsplash, even with grout! You can even make a faux wood wall with laminate floor tiles. It is so popular right now, and so beautiful. It requires absolutely NO prep work! Just start sticking.

6. Refinish Your Showers, Tubs, and Sinks

We recently experimented with refinishing our shower, and we are in love! It has turned out so well that family members are begging us to refinish their tubs and showers. We bought this Bath Works Kit from Home Depot. With shipping and taxes, we paid a little less than $100. It turned out incredibly, and you can do this on any showers, tubs, or even sinks. It looks so classy and new!

7. Refinish Antique Hardware

pexels.com

We already talked about replacing hardware, but we don’t want to replace everything! Once we start gutting a house, it loses its antique charm. Instead of throwing out interesting pieces, try refinishing them! We redid our antique mailbox and outdoor light fixture. It was so easy, and it cost us less than $20! 

We used Rust-Oleum Outdoor Spray Paint. We restored details of the original mailbox that were no longer visible to create a beautiful antique piece in front of our house. We did this with all of the outdoor light fixtures as well, which were rusty and unappealing. When we were finished, our carport and porch looked brand new.

If you found this article useful, like and share this post! Feel free to comment you suggestions or experiences

Next week, come back to read the 4 products I CANNOT live without!

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