Freebie Tips

Finding Freebies

You can use websites to stay on top of new freebies to request. Another idea is to follow your favorite brands via their social media networks (Twitter, Facebook, and so forth). If they have a freebie to offer, they will probably share that via social media and if you follow them, you’ll get the heads up. It’s also a good idea to pay attention to the promotional messages you get from your favorite brands in your inbox. I know it’s always tempting to just delete promotional emails without reading them, but those emails are a great way to learn about upcoming freebies.

Understand That Freebies Run Out Fast

Freebies are popular. Once a freebie goes live, it’s not at all uncommon for that freebie to be G-O-N-E within a day’s time or even in some cases just a few minutes! There are some very popular freebie and deal websites out there with thousands of readers who broadcast the availability of these freebies and they get snatched up. This happens fast because there is usually only a limited number of freebies available in the first place. Don’t get frustrated, just keep trying. Some you’ll be lucky enough to grab and some you won’t.

Should You Request Every Freebie?

Don’t request the ones you know you’ll never use. For example, if it’s a freebie for hair dye and you don’t dye your hair, there’s not much point in requesting that freebie even though it is free. But if you know someone who will use it, why not request it for that person? That is the way I normally look at freebies. I request the things that I know myself or someone else will use at some point.

Using an Alternate Email to Sign Up For Freebies

Speaking of promotional emails, you may not want these coming to your personal inbox. While these emails can be useful, they can also clutter up your inbox in a hurry. Signing up for freebies often means that you opt into the various newsletters these brands might send out. If you don’t like all the emails, then you may want to set yourself up with a free email account at a place like Gmail or Yahoo! and just use that email for requesting freebies.

When Freebies Come in Handy

Freebies, especially the travel-sized items, are wonderful to take with you on trips. The small size makes them very portable and in most cases, you won’t be staying on your trip long enough to require taking a full-sized version of something anyway. I also can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to turn to my freebie stash when I’ve run out of something at my house! It happens — you run out of toothpaste, shampoo, deodorant, etc. and realize you didn’t pick up any extra last time you went shopping. This is when you’ll be thanking the lucky stars you had a freebie on hand you could use in the meantime.

Another idea is to keep your free samples in an extra bedroom or bathroom at your house. If you have a guest room or a bathroom you use primarily for guests, you can keep free samples of things in those rooms so that your visitors can use them if they ever need to. Just throw them all in a big basket and place it on a counter or a dresser for easy access.

Crockpot Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

5 Benefits of Oatmeal and One of My Favorite Oatmeal Recipes

I am usually a smoothie girl. However, as the season’s change and temperatures drop, I like to enjoy a hot breakfast! Oatmeal is EASY to prepare and offers some awesome nutritional benefits:

  • BOTH soluble and insoluble fiber to keep you full and regulate blood sugar
  • 6 grams of protein per serving
  • Studies suggest it lowers LDL cholesterol
  • Includes many important vitamins and minerals such as zinc, iron, copper, and folate
  • Studies suggest it can help aid in the production of breastmilk in nursing mothers
  • IT’S YUMMY!

Please enjoy one of my FAVORITE oatmeal recipes. It is made in the crockpot! So, you can make it at night and wake up to a hot breakfast and the aroma of apples and cinnamon throughout your home!

Crockpot Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups Old Fashioned Oats
  • 2 Apples (I would recommend a tart apple such as Honeycrisp)
  • 4 Cups Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp crushed cloves
  • 2+ tsp cinnamon( I don’t usually measure, I just sprinkle on top of the apples and oats)
  • 2+ TBSP Brown Sugar( Add more Brown Sugar if you prefer sweeter Oats)

Directions: Spray the bottom of your crockpot with non-stick spray or grease with butter. Cut and peel apples. Chop the apples into small pieces(cubes). Place in the bottom of the crockpot. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Next, spread the oatmeal over the apples and sprinkle with salt, cloves, cinnamon, and brown sugar. Pour 4 cups of milk into the crockpot. Set on low and cook for 8-hours.

Serving: Serve warm and add desired toppings such as:
chia seeds: extra antioxidants
slivered almonds: Vitamin E and Extra Protein
milled flaxseed: Omega 3 Fatty Acids and Extra Fiber
dried craisins, raisins, raw honey. maple syrup, brown sugar: additional sweetener

Happy Fall Everyone! Enjoy this special time of year!

What YOU Love in Laundry Room Decor

Hmmm, laundry. That one constant in our lives! We may get it completed, but that feeling of victory is fleeting. Another day, another towel…. and practice uniform ….and comforter. You know what I’m talking about. So, if we can’t ever quite conquer laundry, how about instead creating some beautiful laundry room decor to make this chore more enjoyable?

I did some investigating on Pinterest and looked for what people LOVE in laundry room decor. After contemplating the various pins, I came to some conclusions – We LOVE photos of realistic laundry rooms. Many of the most popular images showed small spaces, tucked away in a closet or small room.

This is the reality in which most of us live. One image even shows a really pretty laundry room someone created in their basement- that’s real life, people! Just because your laundry room is small or in a less than desirable space doesn’t mean it has to be unorganized or ugly!!!!

We LOVE to dream about extravagant, huge laundry rooms as well. Even though we probably won’t ever get one of these super-duper LARGE laundry rooms in our houses, we can still take away laundry room decor inspiration from them, just on a smaller scale.

We LOVE an organized laundry room. Heaps of clean laundry on top of the washer and dryer and heaps of dirty laundry on the floor waiting for the open washing machine. How awesome to see beautiful photos of perfectly tidy, organized laundry rooms. Do these rooms always look like that? Probably not, but we can all dream, can’t we?

We LOVE a place to rinse, and sort, and hang and fold. Wouldn’t a little utility sink just be divine? I would love that in my laundry room. I do have a place to hang clothes, and kind of have a place to sort clothes, but the top of the washer and dryer just isn’t cutting it for folding clothes.

We LOVE to disguise the true purpose of the laundry room with some lovely laundry room decor tricks. Cabinet doors that close over the washer and dryer?- yes, please! A beautiful granite top to fold on?- okay! Shelving and baskets and cute décor?- all right!

You know what? I think I’ll just go and makeover MY laundry room while I give you time to check out all the beautiful photos here and dream of your laundry room makeover!!

Have you renovated your laundry room already? I’d love to see photos. Maybe I can even do an update to this post, featuring YOUR projects, but you’ve got to send me your pics first!!!

If you liked this post, please share this! It helps a lot with the growth of this blog. I know most people don’t share because they feel that their social share will do anything. But here’s the truth…I’m building this blog one small share at a time and will continue to do so. So thank you so much for your support, my reader.

How to make a quilt with your kids

A fun project, particularly for girls, although boys may enjoy it too, is sewing a basic quilt. My siblings and I grew up knowing how to sew because my mom was an excellent seamstress, but the art of sewing seems to be getting lost nowadays. Certainly, there are plenty of people who still do, but it isn’t often taught to children anymore, and that’s a shame because it can be fun and rewarding.
If you have a sewing machine, you can teach your kids the joy of making something on their own, if they’re old enough. If they enjoy it, maybe they’ll graduate to making clothing. But a basic quilt is a good place to start and is relatively simple.

Design the quilt

First, gather plenty of fabric. We always used clothing that we had outgrown or was so worn that it wasn’t presentable anymore. One advantage to that is then your “memory” quilt is a keepsake, with the pajamas you wore when you were 8 and your favorite shirt in junior high. (If you buy new fabric, wash it first.)

Cut them into squares as large or small as you want. We usually make the squares approximately 4 to 6 inches because it’s easy to get several of those out of a garment and they are manageable for learners.

Lay them out on the floor, creating whatever pattern you desire. You could do one fabric all along the border or two fabrics alternating. (There will also be a small border made of the backing fabric if you follow the instructions below.) The next row could be another two fabrics or you could do it completely random. You could make a starburst pattern, a large monogram in the middle, whatever you like.

Sew together the top

Once you have them laid out, then start sewing. Take the first two squares along one edge and put them face to face, sewing along one edge with an approximately 1/4-inch seam.

Repeat this with the next two squares. Then sew the sets of two squares to each other as well until you have an entire row. Do the same to make a second row.

Before sewing the two rows together face to face, you need to open those seams so they will lie flat. Set up the ironing board and iron the seams open. Do the same on each successive row, and when you sew two rows together, the seams will all be nice and flat.

Keep going like that until you have the entire face of the quilt sewn together.

Add backing and batting

Now cut your backing fabric. Generally, this is just one solid piece of fabric, often something nice and soft like flannel, and make sure it coordinates with the colors on the front. If you want a nice border that shows on the quilt top, make it two or three inches larger than the quilt top on all sides.

Lay the backing fabric face down on your work surface or the floor. Place a piece of batting the size of the quilt top on the backing fabric. Then lay your top-down, right side up. Make sure everything is nice and flat without bumps or wrinkles.
Now all that remains is to attach the three parts. To do that, first pin them together at regular intervals so they don’t shift, working from the middle out.

Then fold the backing fabric about half an inch and then fold it again over the top of the quilt and pin it down along all sides. You’ll have to pleat the corners.
Then stitch the top of the quilt along that border. These stitches will show, so try to keep it nice and straight. Older children should be able to do this step, but younger ones will need help, or you may prefer to do it for them.

Finishing touches

Next, you’ll need to make stitches in various places on the top so the batting stays in place between the two layers. This can be accomplished in several ways. One common way that would be good practice for children is to sew a button at the intersections of four pieces; not necessarily at every intersection but intervals.

Or if your sewing machine has decorative stitching, you could run the whole quilt through the machine, doing the stitching either all over or at intervals. You could also do a series of tiny hand-sewn stitches if you don’t want or need the decoration of stitching or buttons. Another option is to thread some matching yarn through a large needle, put the needle down through the quilt, back up, and then tie off the yarn.
If this first project goes well and the child enjoys it, they could try something a little more ambitious the next time, such as making each square out of two triangles to have even more options in making an interesting pattern.