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9 Money Saving Alternatives to Sponges

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Ick! Sponges cost too much to only last a month. Via Shutterstock

I hate sponges – they suck up as much money as they do water! They barely last a month and cost a pretty penny, even when I buy them using a subscription discount. Sometimes it seems as if they are made specifically to break down after just a few washes. And don’t get me started on that disgusting smell that clings to my fingers after I’ve done the dishes. True, kitchen sponges are not a huge part of our household budget, but I bear a special grudge against them because they break down so quickly. (I’ve tried running them through the dishwasher, soaking them in vinegar, but nothing seems to restore them.)

9 alternatives to sponges that save money


Is your child ready for a credit card? Via Shutterstock.

5 Signs Your Child Is Ready For a Credit Card

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Is your child ready for a credit card? Via Shutterstock.

Is your child ready for a credit card? Last week Bargain Babe shared how her allowance helped her learn to save money and that got me thinking about what my parents did to teach me about finances. I began working at 16, got my first debit card that same year, and was given a credit card at age 18. Among my friends I am one of the few who has no credit card debt and has managed to maintain a high credit score (705). I feel that using a credit in a controlled situation helped me to learn successful habits. What do you think?

Is your child ready for a credit card?



Help! I See Nice Things and I Want Them


Does it get any better than this? Via Shutterstock

I’m constantly wrestling with the temptation to upgrade. Upgrade what? Our cars, our pillows, our home decor, EVERYTHING! Take our knives, for instance. We have one high quality chef’s knife and a bunch of lower quality knives that do the job but aren’t exactly sturdy. They need to be sharpened once a year. I would love to have higher quality knives, including a sturdy chef’s knife that fits my husband’s large hands. But when I step back and look at my desire to spend $200-$400 on higher quality knives, I see a broader issue. I want nice things because they are beautiful to look at, easy to use, and make me feel special. But do they actually improve our lives?

Why can’t I be happy with what I have?



On Monday: Staples Back to School $50 Giveaway!!!


$50 Staples gc contest starts Monday! Via Shutterstock

Just a heads up that on Monday, Aug. 25 we are launching a back to school giveaway with a $50 Staples gift card!!! The contest runs Aug 25-29, 2014. I’m psyched to receive some of the hot items Staples has this back to school season as part of this giveaway. Even though my kids are not school age just yet, my home office needs replenishing.

In the meantime, make sure to check out our back to school tab for the latest weekly offers on back to school supplies and gear. Our daily curated list of freebies is also a great spot to find back to school goodies.

There will be lots of opportunities to enter to win via comments, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. So mark your calendars for Monday Aug 25! Go here to enter to win.


How many ways can you use your dishwasher?

10 Unusual Uses for Your Dishwasher


No longer just for dishes! /via Shutterstock

What has your dishwasher done for you lately? You know, other than wash your dishes and such….

Sometimes being a frugalista means having to have more time on your hands than money, to search out the great deals. With a second baby on the way at my house, I’m needing to find more and more ways to save time so that I can continue to “afford” to save money! That means finding more ways to multi-purpose everything, including appliances.

Some of these uses I’d heard of before, but others were a surprise to me. And while some seem like more trouble than they’re worth, a few of them were genius!

Here are 10 unusual uses for your dishwasher:



$1,730 Beef Bill: How Much Do You Spend on Meat?

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How much beef do you eat? Via Shutterstock

Have you ever bought a side of beef? Or bought meat directly from the farmer? (Like we do in our CSA). It’s cheaper than buying meat from the grocery store or butcher – cut out the middleman – and if you buy a side of beef that comes from a grass fed cow, the savings are even greater. All you need is a spare freezer and a hungry stomach. A side of beef can weigh up to 250 pounds! A friend of mine recently bought $1,730 worth of beef directly from the rancher.

Here’s how much meat she got for $1,730



8 Unusual Gifts for the Practical Person in Your Life

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Gift-giving is something almost everyone does for their loved ones and friends throughout the course of a year. From birthdays and holidays to anniversaries and graduations, the meaningful events that happen over the course of a regular life create bountiful opportunities to show you care. Of course, not everyone is easy to shop for. Oftentimes, the most practical person in your life presents the most challenging gift-getting scenario. What do you get for the person who has everything? It’s not as tricky a question as: What do you get the person who needs a utilitarian reason to truly appreciate a gift? If you have a pragmatist in your life who’s tough to buy for, here are eight unusual and practical gifts she’ll love. (more…)

I Dream of Jeannie thrift shop find

3 Amazing Deals You’ll Never Believe I Got at Thrift Stores


I Dream of Jeannie thrift store find

At this writing, “Weird Al” Yankovic has the number one album in the country. One of the songs he parodies, in a polka mix, is Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ Thrift Shop. Proof, in my opinion, that getting a great discount at a second-hand store never gets old. But it’s not all about your grandpa’s style – there are plenty of new, as well as retro, finds at your local thrift store. So in honor of National Thrift Shop Day, August 17th…

Here are three outstanding thrift store finds I stumbled upon: