Posts Tagged ‘gifts’

9 Black Friday Shopping Apps

Smart phones and technology can help make your shopping easier, especially on Black Friday (doesn’t THAT sound nice?). Here are video reviews of Black Friday and other shopping apps that can help you save time and money:

Tech reviewer Matts MacIntosh shows two phone apps to find coupons and locations that accept them, find apps and track their price changes, scan bar codes and then located the best deals. He reviews Yoowza!, AppSniper and RedLaser:

AppVee.com reviews three and evaluates the performance of these three apps designed for shopping Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals . Find out if  the cost of these iPhone & iPad Touch mobile apps are worth their potential savings:

The Daily App Show reviews The Find, a mobile app that ties online and offline shopping together. You can price compare, scan bar codes, locate products and save information to save money. For iPhone and Android:

Crazy Mike from CrayMikesapps.com walks you through the features of THI Friday iPhone App, a free money-saving app:

Owen Robbins from KRRS Systems reviews the money-saving and coupon app called, The Coupons App for iPhones, iPad, Android devices. They also feature Black Friday deals:

More Black Friday Savings strategies in our posts:

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5 Tips to Avoid Holiday Shopping Hassle

Holiday shopping can really be a hassle. Not only are you dealing with all the rushing around, bargain hunting, last minute plans, crowds and traffic, but there’s also safety issues, budget concerns, and how to make sure you’re getting the most value for your money.

Here are 5 short videos that give strategies for shopping in stores and online that will work for you – not only during the holiday shopping season, but throughout the year – with tips on when, where, and how to shop to receive the most bang for your buck with the least amount of hassle.

Hassle-Free Holiday Shopping – Personal finance expert Carmen Wong Ulrich gives tips to stretch your holiday shopping dollars & get the most bang for your buck. Discounted gift cards, price matching, Black Friday, and online shopping tips.

Holiday Shopping Survival Tips – Between overcrowded malls and strict return policies, the shopping season can be stressful. Consumer Correspondent Susan Koeppen gives CBS’s Rebecca Jarvis her smart shopping survival tips for the holidays.

Pay with Paper or Plastic for Gifts? – It is better to pay with cash, credit card, open new accounts, lay-a-way? Wall Street Journal Columnist, Wendy Bounds gives tips on best ways to pay for holiday purchases from gift cards to electronics to apparel and pitfalls to watch out for.

Scouring for Holiday Sales -CBS business and economics correspondent, Rebecca Jarvis, gives her top Web sites & mobile apps to find the best bargain-basement holiday shopping deals.

Saving on Holiday Shopping – Holiday shopping? Some creative and easy tips to, stretch your dollar, stay in control of your spending & save money while enjoying holiday gift-giving from MoneyTalksNews.com’s Stacy Johnson.

Link to this article: http://is.gd/DvLx5O

 

Father’s Day: Fantastic and Wallet-Friendly

We know you care, and your Dad will too!

You can show Dad you have real heart for him, and also hold onto your real savings at the same time with these videos loaded with easy budget-friendly or even free do-it-yourself gifts, gift baskets, recipes, entertaining and activity ideas Dad will love!

Father’s Day the Home Shopping Way – Every father deserves the best, and what better way than with Home Shopping? What dad wouldn’t appreciate a little comedy with his socks and BBQ?  Catch this Karen Alloy comedy.

Meetballs 3-course, feed 4, under $35 – Chef Bill Poirier from Boston’s restaurant, Sonsie, whips up a 3-course-meal for 4 people, for under $35 budget. Spinach salad, turkey meatballs, & chocolate ricotta!

Summer Grilling , Serve 8 for $10 Each – Cook up a 3-course meal for 8 people and for under $10 each with recipes from David Joachim and Andrew Schloss, Authors of  Mastering The Grill.

Cupcake Father’s Day Gifts – Everyone loves cupcakes and the author of   Hey There, Cupcake! shows how to decorate dessert for a special Father’s Day.

DIY Coin and Key Keeper – Give Dad a hand for pocket change & car keys with this one-of-a-kind do-it-yourself tray that any child can make!  Easy DIY from Crayola Creative Workshop.

DYI Photo Frame from a CD Case – An easy DYI gift project from Crayola Creative Workshop: turn an old CD case into a bright and bold picture frame that can hold a special message.

Origami Necktie and Shirt Card – So Easy to do! A DYI origami necktie and shirt card that’s sure to bring a smile to every dad.

Men’s Spa at Home – Men like to indulge too. Check out these at home men’s grooming products and gifts to pamper the man in your life from Lenny LaCour.

For more gift ideas, that are sure to please, check out these blog posts:

These previous posts mention  great resources for nice discounts and even free fun local activities you may want to make part of your Father’s Day plan :

Father’s Day FACT:  Did you know:

Scholars claim the tradition of Father’s Day can be traced in the ruins of Babylon where a young boy called Elmesu carved a Father’s Day message on a card made out of clay nearly 4,000 years ago. Elmesu wished his father good health and a long life. The idea of a Father’s Day celebration in the U.S.A. originated in 1909 in Spokane, Washington, when Ms. Sonora Louise Smart Dodd was listening to Mother’s Day sermon.  Sonora pondered if there is a day to honor mother then why not for father and she began a rigorous campaign to celebrate Father’s Day in the U.S.  It wasn’t until  1972 that a permanent national observance of Father’s Day  was established by President Richard Nixon. More Father’s Day facts

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Black Friday Previews

Black Friday continues to arrive earlier and earlier each year, and this year is no exception. Not only do Black Friday “specials” come earlier, but the “previews” (aka “leaks”) of deals, doorbusters, and specials that stores will be offering on Black Friday come earlier and earlier too.

While I personally am not a Black Friday Shopping Fanatic, I know there are thousands of you who will brave the jammed parking lots, crowds, long lines, and limited stock on doorbuster deals to take advantage of bargains that can be found on that discount shopping day. And, being well prepared in advance is one of the best ways for you to get the most out of those deals.

So for those who are determined to take part in the Black Friday Shopping ritual, we bring you some of our favorite sites and articles for finding Black Friday deal previews, tips and tricks:

UPDATED 11/12/13:

Bargainbabe.com –

 SDBargainMama.com –

BFAds.net –

Delio –

Catch more holiday shopping tips –

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7 Kwanzaa Celebration Ideas For Budget-Friendly Fun

Kwanzaa occurs for 7 days, Dec 26 – Jan 2. On each of those 7 days, a candle is lit, and many stories and historic traditions are honored, but on day 7, the final day,  a lively celebration with traditional foods, drink, music, dancing and gift-giving is enjoyed by friends and family.  Here are some activities, recipes, and decorating ideas to make any Kwanzaa Celebration a happy and festive event (and they will keep your wallet smiling, too!).

Kwanzaa Kinara Craft – A Kinara candle holder out of paper, to last all 7 days. A fun and easy craft that even the very youngest can do, from CraftClub.com

Awesome Homemade Gifts – Thoughtful and creative gifts are a Kwanzaa tradition. “Good Day Wisconsin” Reporter,Rachel Manek, shares three creative and easy DYI projects that make meaningful and budget friendly gifts, each costing less than $5.00.

How to Make an Origami Gift Box – Creative, eco-friendly, DYI & perfect for any gift-giving budget: An origami gift box. Supplies: only 8 squares of paper. Perfect for putting little gifts into. If you’re a beginner this is a nice project to start with from StormTheCastle.com

Kwanzaa Table Decor – Celebrate Kwanzaa with personal and rustic table decorating ideas. Tips from event planner, Tangie Murray, in this excerpt from the design TV show, “Sheila Bridges, A Holiday Show”

Sweet Potato Tartlets – A quick recipe from “Down Home with the Neelys” hosted by Pat and Gina Neely on the Food Network. Using a Kwanzaa traditional vegetable, the sweet potato, they show how to make easy individual sweet potato tartlets.

 

Spoon Bread – Here is an easy recipe with a healthier spin on corn spoon bread, a Kwanzaa holiday favorite, from Chef Wilbert Jones from Healthy Heritage Kitchen

North African Meatballs – Melissa D’Arbian, host of the Food Network’s “10 Dollar Dinners” shows a delicious dollar-stretching North African inspired meatball dish.

Link to this article: http://is.gd/v7iT6K


12 (Awesome) Gifts Under $10

Gifts that are thoughtful, clever, fun and beautiful for under $10? YES! Here are 12 ideas that are perfect for the “Grab Bag” event, stocking stuffers, hostess gifts, thank you gifts, and even THE gift for THE friend or THE family member… you’ll find ideas here that will make a great impression for anyone on your gift list – and won’t put a dent in your wallet, either.

 

Bright Porcelain bowls. Serve dips, hold fruit, nuts, chips, or brighten  your morning cereal with these welcoming porcelain colorful vessels created in collaboration with Potter’s Workshop, a collective of South African artists known for their signature bead-like patterns. Microwave and dishwasher safe. 3.75 ” diam. x 2.5″h.  From West Elm. $5 each.

Colorful bracelets made from real guitar strings! Designed by Hannah Garrision & Steve Bernstein. The guitar strings are made in China; the bracelet is handmade in the U.S. with lead-free nickel and brass. Available at UncommonGoods. $10 each.

The healing power of comedy is now available in an over-the-counter form. Apply this Emergency Clown Nose liberally as needed. A necessary accessory for removing splinters or applying band-aids. Side effects may include chuckling, chortling and guffawing. Nose made of polyester. From UncommonGoods, created by professional clowns Rosie Cole and Lloyd Brant to promote their philosophy of healing through laughter.  $5.

Key Tool Keyring Multi-tool – This tiny tool packs the power of 8 different tools: 3 screwdrivers, tweezers, wire stripper, and more. It fits on your keychain and it comes with a fake key to “park” in. Made of stainless steel for strength and durability. From think geek. $7.99

Glass Candlesticks. Handmade from handblown and heat-tempered clear borosilicate (“beaker”) lab glass these candle holders are graceful glass sculptures in three light-as-a-feather yet durable styles. From CB2, $4.95. each.

Bud vases. Showcase your fresh flowers in this sleek, iron, teardrop-shapped bud vase. Handcrafted in India.  From CB2 $9.95 – $10.95.

Bright green cable with eight magnets displays photos, memos, cards and notes without the need for overwhelming your walls with excessive pins, nails or tape. Weighted end keeps the 59.5″ cable straight.  At CB2. $6.95

 

Bamu Cork Coffee Cuff reusable mug holder is an eco-friendly alternative to paper protectors. Fits various sized cups, glasses, cans and thermoses.  At Amazon.com. $9.75.

 

A fresh idea for wall display or a bulletin board alternative; Darice Cork Sticky Shapes are great for one-handed posting of messages, lists, notes, photos. Items stick securely and remove easily with or without tacks or pins. These cork shapes will stick to most surfaces. Ideal for interior rooms, offices, dorm rooms, bedrooms and/or where sound dampening is needed. Available in a variety of shapes (hearts, crowns, flowers, skulls, etc.). Includes 8 cork sticky shapes per pack, $4.70.


Quench your dog’s thirst while on the road with the Pet Water Bottle Top. The plastic top fits most standard water bottles and the flow can be adjusted for any size pet. Made of plastic with an adjustable flow for any size pet. The bright orange color ensures you won’t mistake your pet’s bottle for yours.  Includes an adapter to fit different bottle types. From Pettop.com. $7.95.

You don’t always need staples! This handy (and environmentally friendly) staple-less stapler device cuts a tiny flap in the corner of your paper, and folds it in on itself, tucked in a tiny paper pocket. Sleek and small, the Staple Free Stapler can clip together up to five sheets with ease. We personally use this and love it! Amazon.  $7.02.

The Credit Card Lightbulb means no more struggling to find your keys, or squinting while trying to read the menu when the restaurant is too dark. Handy when traveling, too. This unusual card looks like a flat incandescent bulb, but push the bulb vertical and it unexpectedly lights up. The rest of the card serves as a stand. The same size, though slightly thicker than a credit card you can easily store one in your wallet or purse. From ThinkGeek.com. Batteries included, $3.99 – $5.99

More Gift Ideas that Won’t Stretch Your Wallet in our posts:

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12 Gifts Under $30

Giving a gift that lets someone you care about know you are thinking of them does not have to cost a fortune or break your budget. Here are 12 unique gift ideas all for less than $30, that would suit anyone, anytime, from kids to great-grandparents – while suiting your bank balance as well.

Give the gift of warmth and comfort with a cozy throw. These welcomed cozy down-alternative throw is available in an array of colors and patterns to suit any personality and every decor. From JC Penney. Machine washable. $19.99 – $25.

Carafe and Cup set: This elegant glass and pitcher duo is made entirely out of recycled glass bottles, giving it a unique pale green color and a sculptural aesthetic. The textured bands of glass allow it to be grasped firmly, preventing accidental slips and spills. Beautiful on nightstands, dressers, and desks, and tables, even when it’s not bearing water. Handmade by fair trade artisans in Bolivia. $29.99

Chill the party with this festive red  party cooler that’s ultra-hot! This Metal Party Tub offers a great way to ice drinks and snacks in the back yard, park, or stadium parking lot. Made from a durable and rust-resistant alloy with a bright finish, this reinforced Metal Party Tub comes with steel carrying handles and is built to last. Available is several colors at Party City, $19.99.

This versatile serving platter set is made of gleaming white durable porcelain with a clean sleek design. Dishwasher, microwave, and conventional oven-safe. Made in China. 5-piece set includes: four small platters; one large platter. From CB2. The set: $22.75.
The Fozzils Solo Flat Pack Dinerware Set is great for your outdoorsy friend or adventure traveler.  Made of durable polypropylene and is leak-proof and easy to clean. Just throw the flat sheets in your backpack and later fold into cup, bowl, and plate and spoon in seconds. The Fozzils Pack Set comes in a reusable packing sleeve that can also be used as a prep tray or cutting board. $15.95 a set.
Bring memories home with this darling Sandy Feet Casting Kit. You can use it for either footprints or handprints. Simply make a foot or hand print in dense, moist sand. Collect beach water in the cup provided; mix in the special powder to it, then pour the mixture into the print impression. You can even personalize your print with the included stylus, and use the cord to make your footprint ready-to-hang. Allow 20 minutes for it to harden, then gently scoop the print out. Use the special keepsake pail to tote your creation home! The kit can make two children’s feet (up to size 2) or one adult foot. Parental supervision required. Contents made in the USA; tin made in China. Sand not included. From UncommonGoods. $15.

Charge your cell phones in style with the Garden Charging Station. Keep your counters looking neat and tidy and add a little decor with this “grass” filled decorative container.Easily hide all your charging cords by placing them under the grass and run 1 extension cord to the Charging Station. Available in black or white. 10.5″ L x 6″ W x 3.5″ H. Extension cord not included. At Convenient Gadgets & Gifts. $27.95

Guitar Pick Punch – Create your own recycled guitar picks quickly and easily with the Pick Punch. Turn expired credit cards, old gift cards, hotel key cards, and other thin plastic into perfectly-shaped guitar picks. The heavy-duty Pick Punch features a steel head that can cut through materials up to 1mm thick. Good idea for DIY earrings or necklace pendants too! From UncommonGoods. $25.

HABA/TC Timber Master Builder Series. This large block set allows children to use and learn the same engineering principles the Romans followed. In true Romanesque style, this 54 pc set of solid wooden blocks is sure to entertain young and old architects alike. Note: This set does not come with building instructions. From Maukilo.com.$29.99

The Hess Toy Truck – We just can’t help it – we love this gift! (yes, it was on last year’s list, too) Since 1964 Hess has released a new model toy truck in November each year; and kids (no matter what age) never tire of collecting them and playing with them. They often are actually two vehicles and feature high quality realistic fun with extras like flashing lights, sirens, lifts or ramps. Available at participating Hess Gas Stations, starting November 11, 2011, and they sell out fast! Batteries included, $26.99.

Tabletopics. Played with family, friends or during a candlelit dinner for two, each card in a Tabletopics sets asks a different thought-provoking, conversation-starting question. Choose from four different sets – Couple’s Edition, Family Edition, Original Edition, and Dinner Party Edition. All four sets are guaranteed to keep the fun and conversation flowing. (we can personally attest to that!) The set of 135 cards are housed in acrylic 4 x 4″ square cube. Appropriate for ages 12 and up. From RedEnvelope. $29.95

This leather and stainless steel  heart token manages to be both rugged and refined. The versatile leather necklace is expandable up to 35 inches and is available in four colors. The necklace is available in Black (pictured), Brown, Red or Pink. Specify necklace color and up to six letters for custom engraving. Not suitable for children under 12 years of age. From Enchanted Memories $25.99

This cheeky money clip serves its purpose, even if you’re light on cash. The engraving, rich in humor, says it all (and then some):  “The safest way to double your money is to fold it over once and put it in your pocket.” – Kin Hubbard. Made of aluminum and made in the USA, from UncommonGoods. $18.

More creative and wallet-friendly gift ideas in our posts:

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How to Control Your Holiday Spending

Holidays bring their unique share of additional budget stress and strain. Everything around you begins to shout, “Spend more, more, more!”  There are so many more last-minute pressures: invitations, events, meals, gifts and guests to shop for. Everything screams ” Spend more!”… except perhaps your budget. How to balance the increasing holiday demands while keeping a handle on your spending and keeping your budget in control can sometimes feel like a daunting task. Here are excellent videos and resources with easy and actionable pointers to help you succeed in maintaining control and navigating the holiday (and any other) season on budget.

Videos with tips from experts:

Controlling Your Holiday Spending – Personal finance expert and author of Reduce Debt, Reduce Stress, Gerri Detweiler, gives ways to stay in control of your spending for the holiday season. Tips on credit, rebates, returns, rewards and more.

Holiday Spending Control – This video from financial planner, wealth management advisor and author Stewart Welch shares 3 easy and effective tips for spending wisely over the holidays.

Favorite Holiday Shopping Tips – Personal finance expert Farnoosh Torabi shares her favorite holiday shopping tips to help you receive the best bargains and keep your sanity and budget in order in the process.

Holiday Spending Insight – Find you’re getting into financially stressful situations during the holidays? Mike Sullivan, Director of Education at Take Charge America, reveals why and gives good basic tips to steer clear of holiday spending pitfalls in this video clip.

Holiday Spending & Budgeting: Get Control –  Millions of Americans still carry debt from last holiday season! This clip gives one simple tip that could save you big and keep you in control of your credit, debt and spending budget.

Link to this article: http://is.gd/YcPYfE

Give Gifts That Give

You can increase the value of your money when you shop by choosing gifts and items from organizations that donate their profits to deserving causes. Why not put your money toward enriching the lives of others while at the same time giving a beautiful gift to a friend, family member, or even yourself?  Enjoy giving gifts that give back this holiday season or throughout the year.

Charity Water – Since its inception in 2006, Charity Water has developed 4,000 projects that will serve over two million people around the world with clean and safe drinking water. This video shares their story. Proceeds from their gift shop help support operating costs and fund sustainable clean water solutions in developing countries. Charity Water gifts range from $12 and up: wrist bands, bracelets, gift cards, stationery, calendars, iPod and laptop Gelaskins, eco-friendly thermos hydration bottles, T-shirts and hoodies.

The Amber Chand Gift Collection – This gift collection offers beautiful gifts made by craftswomen from areas of conflict and post-conflict around the globe. Here in this video Amber tells the story of her company, while showcasing the gifts. All Amber Chand Collection gifts are under $50.

TOMS One for One, Giving New Shoes – For every pair of TOMS shoes you buy, TOMS will give one new pair to a child in need.  Together with their giving partners, TOMS have given over 1,000,000 pairs of new shoes to children in need around the world. Toms eco-friendly shoes are designed for all ages and use no animal by-products. Prices start at $38. This video features the founder of TOMS being interviewed on Ellen Degeneris’ TV show.

TOMS One for One, Giving Eyesight – For every pair of TOMS sunglasses you buy, TOMS will help give the gift of sight to a person in need. Eye care is provided through partnerships with expert eyecare organizations throughout the world. TOMS offers three classic shapes for their sunglasses, with hand-painted details. See the story of TOMS world wide “One for One’ Giving Eyesight campaign.  Sunglasses are $135 and $145 per pair.

Ebay for Charity – Take advantage of the huge array of products available on Ebay while knowing your purchase will benefit a worthy cause. eBay has designed eBay Giving Works, a format where sellers may commit to donate all or a percentage of their listing’s final sale price to the non-profit of their choice. The blue-and-yellow ribbon identifies those listings that support nonprofits through eBay Giving Works. This video with Ebay Giving Works General Manager, Kristin Cunningham explains how it works.

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Father’s Day Fabulous (and frugal)

U.S. Father’s Day falls in June, on the third Sunday of the month.

Create a fantastic Father’s Day! Here are tips on affordable & eco-friendly gifts, preparing a top notch meal,  DIY crafts for gifts that both kids and adults can create, and pointers on how to be a fantastic host for Father’s Day. We give you everything you need to create a fabulous day for Dad while keeping your budget balanced and your wallet full!

Grilled Sausage 3-Course Under $35 – Budget friendly gourmet 3-Course meal under $35  – Father and son chefs, Joe Isidori, Executive Chef of NYC’s Harbor Restaurant, and Arthur Isidori, Saucier Chef at Admiral’s Cove in Juniper, Florida, together show their recipes for Tomato Salad,  Tomato Basil Pasta,  Sweet & Spicy Grilled Sausage… UMMM!

Top 5 Eco Gifts for Father’s Day – Save money, the earth, and bring a smile to Dad with these 5 top budget and eco friendly pics for Father’s Day gifts from EcoBold.com founder, Steffany Boldrini.

Gifts for Dad that Kids Can Create – Emily Hover from PioneerPartyandGift.com gives 7 easy, fun & budget friendly DIY ideas that kids can create for Father’s Day gifts for Dad.

Make a Paper Wallet in Under 2-Minutes – How To Make a paper wallet – Easy DIY using only paper that anyone can do and Dad will love. Great for business cards or photos, too!

6 Steps to Hosting a Great Father’s Day – Sometimes just a little undivided attention is all that Dad needs to make his Father’s Day celebration truly special. Here are 6 tips to being the perfect host of a perfect day for Dad.

More fantastic Father’s Day ideas in these related SLTV posts:

Link to this article: http://is.gd/MYztfJ

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