Category: Lifestyle

Easter Egg Hunt for Older Kids

Easter Egg Hunt for Older Kids

Easter Egg Hunt for Older Kids

Easter isn’t just for the little guys. Easter activities can be for the older kids, too! You never outgrow the desire to have fun with your family and no one ever outgrows the desire for candy either!

When the kids are tiny all you have to do for an Easter egg hunt is lay a few plastic eggs on the ground. When they get a little bit bigger you can actually ‘hide’ a few. No matter how old the kids get, Easter egg hunts can still be a lot of fun.

This year’s activity for the Easter Egg Hunt for the older kids involves movies and movie quotes! I took some of our favorite movie quotes, typed them up and put them into plastic eggs. On Easter, I’m giving the kids a list of movies. The idea is to find the eggs and the match the movie quote to the movie. Each egg also has some candy it because = seriously jelly beans are awesome, right?

If you have older kids you want to entertain on Easter print off these movies and movie quote lists for your own Easter Egg hunt for the older kids. You never get too old for fun and candy!

PRINT the quotes to put into eggs.

Cut into strips, fold, and insert in plastic Easter Eggs.
Cut into strips, fold, and insert in plastic Easter Eggs.
Cut into strips, fold, and insert in plastic Easter Eggs.
Cut into strips, fold, and insert in plastic Easter Eggs.
Cut into strips, fold, and insert in plastic Easter Eggs.
Cut into strips, fold, and insert in plastic Easter Eggs.

 

Cut into strips, fold, and insert in plastic Easter Eggs.
Cut into strips, fold, and insert in plastic Easter Eggs.
Cut into strips, fold, and insert in plastic Easter Eggs.
Cut into strips, fold, and insert in plastic Easter Eggs.

Next, PRINT the movie list for matching. I like to have the kids work together rather than compete. Sometimes one quote is more memorable to one kid than another. The kid is just to have fun anyway – not to win. When the movies and quotes are all matched up – everyone gets a chocolate bunny.

Easter Egg Hunt Movie Titles 2
Print and give a copy to the kids so they can match the movie with the movie quote.
Print and give a copy to the kids so they can match the movie with the movie quote.

Let us know what sort of activities you do with your older kids? We’d love to hear all about it!

 

Personal Finance – Control your money

Personal Finance – Control your money

Who remembers the commercial: ‘This is your brain on drugs’?

Today we are going to talk about money, math, and your brain on math about money.

**Try saying that three times fast!**

First of all a confession. I am not a math person. By that I mean I still pause to remember multiplication facts I have been trying to memorize since I was in the 4th grade. I’m seriously beginning to think that isn’t going to happen. 😉

Math has always been a thorn in my side and I detest having to use it with every single fiber in my being.

BUT

Two things make the world go round –

  1. Love – and all that goes with it 😉
  2. Money – which requires knowledge of Satan’s tool – math

So, if you are EVER EVER going to understand and use math – do it in the math arena. If you have trouble with the math get help! A financial planner might just be the answer to your math problems.

I read an interesting article recently to determine whether or not people understood math concepts with – or without help.

Insert face palm here. DUH!!! I hope they didn’t spend a lot of money on a stupid study like that because only Einstein would do better in math without help. And remember, this is the guy who didn’t remember to brush his hair in the morning so math ability without help isn’t everything, clearly. AND – who let him out of the house like that??

But, the research was done and lo, and behold, observe the shocking results:

21% of people were more relaxed doing math with help

28% stronger ability to understand concepts with help

20% less effort was needed to concentrate on math tasks with help

What does this Earth shattering scientific study mean to you?

It means you should consider a financial planner.

WARNING – A Financial Planner is NOT just for ‘rich’ people.

As a matter of fact, a financial planner makes even more sense for people who aren’t rich. We are the people who need to pay close attention to our money! For example, someone made of money like Paris Hilton hardly needs to worry about her money because she has plenty no matter what smart or stupid decision she makes about it.

Having enough money saved for retirement, college tuition, medical expenses, and life in general is not a happy accident. Being financially prepared for the future takes planning and attention.

Planning for your financial future can be hard and confusing, too. You don’t have to do it alone. Get some help to figure out how to make the MOST of your money.

Consider using a financial planner to:

*maximize your savings

*prepare for college tuition

*be ready for retirement

* have a fund for medical expenses

There are LOTS of financial planners to choose from. Sometimes their services can be free to you. Does your company offer one? Check with your bank to see if they can be of assistance.

piggy bank financial planning

Make your money WORK for you! Heaven knows you WORK for it! Make YOUR dreams come true.

control your finances

 

Funny Words of Wisdom

Funny Words of Wisdom

Funny Words of Wisdom

Are you feeling wise today? Want to feel wise today? Get a chuckle out of these funny words of wisdom and pass along to any friends who also need a little bit of humor and wisdom in their life!Yoda funny words of wisdom

You know you’re a mom when you understand why Momma Bear’s porridge was cold.Funny words of wisdom, you know you're a mom when

Motherhood: Powered by love. Fueled by coffee. Sustained by wine.

I love cleaning up messes I didn’t make. That’s why I became a mom.

Behind every mom is a full basket of dirty laundry.

If exercising patience burned calories, I’d be a Victoria Secret model by now!funny words of wisdom, if exercising patience burned calories,

Mother: noun. 1. One person who does the world of twenty. For free. (See also: masochist, loony, saint)

I love all my children equally. Except for the one that sleeps. I love that one more.

Becoming a mother makes you realize you can do almost anything with one hand.

My hairdo is called, “I have kids.”

If a woman speaks and no one listens, her name is probably Mom.

Nothing is really lost until mom can’t find it.funny words of wisdom

Good moms let you lick the beaters. Great moms turn them off first.

My mom doesn’t just enjoy guilt trips. She runs the travel agency.

May your coffee be strong and your nap time long.

Cleaning house with the kids at home is like brushing your teeth while eating Oreos.

Love quotes? We do, too! Add YOUR favorite quote to the comment below and we’ll add it.

CLICK here to read travel quotes from some of our favorite travel bloggers.

Thanks for joining us on this crazy MOM adventure. We want to hear from you! Tell us your crazy mom adventure stories.

Adventures by MOM

 

 

 

Don’t Waste Money with Credit Cards

Don’t Waste Money with Credit Cards

Waste Money – Are you making these costly mistakes?

save money series 2

Isn’t it awful to use the words ‘waste’ and ‘money’ in the same sentence? Don’t you work WAY too hard and spend WAY to many hours earning your money to waste any? It is crazy but true. Most people actually waste  some of their money.

Are the bills from Christmas STILL coming in? Bummed about how there is never enough money left over for the fun stuff in life? Worried about how to have enough money left over for retirement? College tuition? Travel?

You are NOT alone!

This, 2018, is the year to take control over your finances. Save money! Stop wasting money! HAVE money left over for the finer things in life. Yes, you, too, can manage your finances.

Piggy bank standing on money

First, if you missed the first article in this series – Step  1, helps you find out where your money is going!

CLICK HERE to read the first step in the Save Money Series.

Are you *gasp* wasting money?

Are you wasting money? piggy bank cash

Examine these common money wasters to see if you need to make a few chances that can add up to BIG savings over this year!

Waste Money – Credit Cards

We all know that Credit cards are a necessary evil. We use them for all sorts of reasons and life would be a lot more complicated without them. However; if you don’t play your cards right (English teacher humor there – pun intended) those little credit card devils can cause you a lot of heartache.

You don’t need to break up with your credit cards, but you might want to take along hard look at them to make the best choices possible for your family’s financial security.

Waste Money – How much debt?

We all know the best interest rate is the one you don’t pay because you pay off your credit card bill in full each month. If you are able to do that – Yeah you! because you would be in the very small minority.

The average credit card holder has a lot of debt they carry from month to month. Interestingly this amount varies by state.

States with the MOST credit card debt per person:

  1. Alaska  $10,091
  2. Wyoming  $8,979
  3. California  $8,917

States with the LEAST credit card debt per person:

  1. South Carolina  $5,406
  2. Rhode Island $5,387
  3. Maine  $5,346

When you carry a credit card balance from month to month you do 2 things:

  1. ADD charges each month from your regular spending
  2. ADD fees from interest

If you carry a credit card balance you are basically digging yourself a debt hold and you are making that hole deeper and deeper each month. OUCH!!

Waste Money – Credit Card Interest

Talk about highway robbery! Take a look at how much interest your credit card is charging you. I highly recommend sitting down before reading because that number could really big BIG! An adult beverage might make that number easier to absorb.

The average credit card interest rate is 12.5%. What does that mean? Well ‘average’ means there are credit cards that have much higher rates – like 27% and there are credit cards that have lower rates. See out the lowest interest rate you can find!

Thankfully the highest interest rates credit card companies can legally charge is 29.99%.

There is a lot of nitty gritty information regarding credit card APRs and interest rates. If you are so inclined,

CLICK HERE to read the mind numbing info on credit card interest rates.

When you are looking at credit cards, interest rates is only one part of the puzzle.

Consider these three things when choosing a credit card.

  1. interest rate
  2. rewards for spending
  3. yearly fee

CLICK HERE  to find a list of low interest credit cards.

Chase Slate looks especially good. It costs $0 to transfer your balance from your current card, 0% interest rates for 15 months (and during that time you can pay down your balance) and $0 yearly fee. Check out Chase Slate here to get all the nitty gritty rules.

****I get NO money for this information.****

We love rewards! Pick and choose the best credit card rewards for you. My favorite is getting miles for each purchase which we then use for travel.

CLICK HERE tips for How to Afford Travel

I HATE yearly fees. I’m just personally offended by them. I mean, I already pay them interest and they want me to pay to carry the card around in my wallet? Um, no thank you.

BUT

If you do the math (OMG – hate math even more than cooking) some of the credit cards that have yearly fees are so worth it. Bite the bullet and do the math. It will be worth it!

Waste Money – Examine your credit card bill

One of the money and soul sucking ways credit cards can get the best of you is through automatic billing.

Remember that $7.99 a month membership you bought to help your 2nd grader with spelling? Even if you don’t….the credit card remembers and your 2nd grader is now 16 years old. Stop paying for things you don’t need anymore.

Take one evening to sit down and go over your credit card bill in detail to find out how much you are accidentally paying this way. Chances are good it will add up to more than you think. Don’t feel bad if this is you! It is really easy in our super busy world to let things like this slip. No biggie.

Make a list of things you want to cancel so you can start the process. I say process because companies love getting money every month – forever- and do NOT make it easy to stop. Be prepared to call, wait, and send emails – more than once.

It will be painful but worth it! Personally,l I have found it hardest to get out of gym memberships (even after leaving the state where the gym is located), alarm company contracts and cable memberships. We have moved quite a bit over the last 17 years so I’ve had more than once chance to go through this lovely process.

BUT – who are they to think they can just keep taking your money forever? Show them who is boss of YOUR money and be persistent. It will pay off.

Waste Money – Choose Wisely

Everyone makes mistakes. Don’t beat yourself up about it if you realize now that you’ve made some mistakes with your money. Just move forward doing a better job now.

I love this quote by Maya Angelou

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then, when you know better, do better.”

So, now you know better so you can spend 2018 doing better with your money!

We’d love to hear all about your credit card experiences so leave your story below in the comments.

If you want to hear more from us, check out our sister blogs!

Pixie Dust Queen, Laura Buastian

Pixie Dust Queen – Disney Planning with Pixie Dust

The Educational Tourist in Athens

The Educational Tourist – Raise Global Citizens through Travel

 

Save Money in 2018

Save Money in 2018

Is saving money is on your list of things to do in 2018?

If so, you aren’t alone. To save money makes the Top 10 list of New Year’s Resolutions every single year.

Top 10 New Year’s Resolutions:

  1. Be Fit and Healthy
  2. Lose Weight
  3. Enjoy Life
  4. Spend less, save more
  5. Get organized
  6. Travel more
  7. Read more
  8. Quit smoking
  9. Learn something new
  10. Volunteer

The first order of business when it comes to saving money is to examine your spending habits. Once you figure out exactly where your money is going, then you can make adjustments to save more of your hard earned cash.

So, first take one month to write down everything you spend. Every day just jot down on a calendar what you spent or any money you received. At the end of the month add up the amount you spent. You might see a pattern and a place where you can save money.

Save Money – Cook

I just HATE to cook. Honestly the cooking gene  in my family just skipped right over me.

When it comes to cooking all I can think:

  1. SO much time to plan
  2. SO much time to shop
  3. SO much time to cook
  4. EXACTLY 37 seconds to eat

It just seems like cooking is not an effective use of time! LOL!

But when I learned that the average American family spends over $3,000 a year on eating out I decided to take a closer  look at my habits.

“Eating out everyday at lunch? By spending $10 per lunch you’ll spend a whopping $2500 a year. Suddenly peanut butter sandwiches don’t sound that bad!”

CLICK HERE for some cheap, healthy and delicious recipes!

Save Money – Don’t Throw Food Away

Ok, shame on all of us for food waste. It really is a huge issue and Americans actually waste more food than any other country in the world. As much has 50% of all produce in the US is thrown away – $160 BILLION of food every single year. That equals about $1600 per family WASTED.

WOW!

Let’s step away from that horrible statistic and move closer to eating that food and keep it out of the landfills AND keep that money in our wallets.

Save Money – How Not to Waste Food

  1. Plan Ahead – I won’t lie. I hate this part. I hate knowing that Thursday I have to cook chili. What if I don’t feel like cooking chili on Thursday? OK. I know that is super duper selfish of me. I’ll make myself grow up if you will!

So, plan the week’s menu. It helps me if I just think it terms of the week and then choose the day I end up cooking the chili.

Then, prepare: Count how many bananas you’ll need for school lunches. Go ahead and slice up the radishes for the dinner salad instead of waiting for them to rot in the refrigerator. (Don’t judge! Doesn’t everyone have something furry in the fridge?)

COMING SOON – help with menu planning

2. Stick to the plan! 

If you bought enough bananas to put one in everyone ‘s lunch every day, then stick to the plan and put a banana in everyone’s lunch every day. Otherwise the bananas will rot and then be put into the black hole of the freezer purgatory where they’ll wait to become ……banana bread.

Banana bread, which you and I both know, you haven’t baked since 1992 back when your metabolism worked properly.

So, the slimy, but now frozen, bananas will take up freezer space for about 12 months till you toss them out to make room for newer, fresher, slimy rotten bananas for the banana bread you won’t be baking this year either.

So, let’s just skip all that nonsense and just give everyone a banana for lunch.

Save Money – Watch your Drinks.

I hate the ‘non’ water, don’t you? My kids hate the non-taste of water, don’t yours?

All the things you drink instead of plain, boring water is costing a fortune. Don’t believe me? Go back to month one where you wrote down all your spending to see how much of your hard earned money is going to drinks. I think you’ll be as surprised as I was!

Step 1 Coffee and Tea on the go.

Yes, we are talking about your Starbucks habit. I’m not saying that your morning ‘half-calf, tall, vegan latte with 2 pumps of caramel, 3 sprinkles of cinnamon and 1 ice cube” is not worth the money. Just be aware of how much money you are spending on it and make sure it is worth it!

Options to Save Money on your Tea/Coffee/Water habit:

Step 1 –  BYOC – Bring Your own Cup – Sometimes places will give you a discount on coffee and tea if you bring your own cup. Einstein Bagel’s is one business that will!

Make your coffee and tea at home.  Learn how to make your fancy schmancy coffee recipe at home and take it with you.

Cut back. Consider coffee purchased at a place like Starbucks as a treat and not an everyday thing.

Step 2 – Buy a refillable water bottle.

Refillable water bottles are everywhere. Buy your own to refill FREE from water fountains everywhere.

Step 3 – BYOF – Bring Your Own Flavor

Small packets of flavoring are cheap, lightweight and easy to carry around. These make super cheap drinks for the whole family. You can save a ton on drinks this way when you travel.

When we were in Turkey and only drinking bottled water, flavor packets I brought from home really made the kids happy!

CLICK HERE – Save Money on your Disney Trip

Save Money – Look for Special Deals

When you do spend money to eat out, make it go as far as possible.

Step 1 – Watch the time.

Some menus have early bird specials. Lunch is usually less expensive than dinner, too.

Step 2 – Coupons

Watch your mailbox. You can get coupons through your snail mailbox and your email inbox. New restaurants often drum up business with coupons. See if your favorite restaurant has a loyalty program by checking out their Facebook page.

Groupon has some amazing deals, too!

Step 3 – Cash or Charge?

Carefully choose your payment method. Sometimes you get a discount with cash. Certain credit cards give points for purchases, too.

Save Money – Try a Plan

Watching your savings add up is fun because you can see yourself getting close and closer to your goal. Here are some great ways to watch those savings really add up!

Plan 1 – Save $1 a day. Each day add $1 to the amount.

Day 1 – $1

Day 2 – $2

Day 3 – $3

It gets harder at the end of the month when you are saving $30 a day.

Coming Soon –  the Save $1 a day worksheet.

OR Save $1 a day – every day. You will be shocked at how this adds up!

CLICK HERE  for the math if you save $1 every day.

Plan 2 – Save coins.

We have been saving coins for years and it really really adds up. We have two containers – one for pennies and one for everything else. Counting and helping with the rolling are great jobs for kiddos! Remember the phrase:

“See a penny, pick it up and all the day you’ll have good luck!”

Plan 3 – Pay yourself.

This is my favorite way to add money to my travel fund.

I do things myself instead of paying someone else to do it! You can learn to do anything by watching youtube videos and you can start there. If I manage to do something myself, I put the amount of money I would have paid someone else into the travel fund.

Sone things I’ve paid myself to do:

  1. repaired a trash compactor (Thank you Youtube!)
  2. painted a wrought iron fence (I learned not to wear sandals for this type of project. My feet were striped from the overspray floating down onto my feet.)
  3. Dog grooming – I bathe the little one because she is small and manageable at only 8.5 pounds. The bigger, fluffier one isn’t worth the mess after a bath. I trim their nails myself and pay my $5 each time.

Think about your strengths. What can you do and then pay yourself?

  1. Wash the car?
  2. Change oil?
  3. Clean the house?
  4. Mow the lawn?

save money this year

 

Take control of YOUR finances to save for YOUR dreams!

**retirement

**college tuition

**travel

We’d love to hear what you do to keep control of your savings. Give us your tips in the comments.