Ring in the New Years at LEGOLAND!

Ya’ll know how much our family LOVES Legoland, right? Well if you are looking for a family friendly way to ring in the new year and have the kids to bed before the real big ball drops, consider spending the day at Legoland!

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The grand finale of Holidays at LEGOLAND® California Resort is the annual Kids’ New Year’s Eve party! This lively party begins with special musical performances from kid favorite groups Twinkle Time and Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band on Fun Town Stage and in Heartlake City.

Then, for the first time, the party moves to San Francisco in Miniland U.S.A. where like the famous Times Square party, guests gather for the countdown followed by a huge LEGO® brick dropping 22 feet into 2017 and spectacular fireworks at 6 p.m. to end the night(with plenty of time to spare to get home for bed!).

And right now, the deal gets sweeter!!

LEGOLAND California Resort is offering a gift for holiday guests: From Nov. 21, 2016 through Jan. 1, 2017, buy a one day admission to LEGOLAND California and return a second day to LEGOLAND California and SEA LIFE® Aquarium for free between Jan. 2, 2017 and March 1, 2017.

All Holidays at LEGOLAND California Resort activities located inside the Park are included with regular Park admission (Kids 3–12 $89; Adults $95; Parking $15).

For more Holidays information, visit www.LEGOLAND.com or call (760) 918-LEGO (5346).

I’ve had such a great year being a Legoland Blogger, and I hope to continue next year, bringing you great promotions and sharing news straight from Legoland!  I’ll be sharing some tips on how to save money when planning your Legoland trip in the next few days, just in time for NYE!

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Wanna Save Money in 2017?

8f235f4422591a09bd341f17958e172c.jpgOne of the most common New Years Resolutions is to to save money. And it’s a good one!

Last year I wrote a series with the top ten resolutions:

 

If you feel like you are too busy to “deal with” coupons:

I hope these tips and articles help!

New Year’s Resolution #10: Reduce, Reuse, recycle

So this is the last one! I’ve been meaning to post this for a week or so, but I hurt my wrist (I fell while hiking!), so I’ve been off the computer a lot.

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#10 is a big one for our family! Reduce, re-use, recycle!

Reduce:

  • Buy less stuff. That one is pretty simple.
  • Use what you have on hand.  There are some pretty awesome websites like Recipe Key and Recipe Matcher that help you find recipes based on what you have in your pantry.
  • Reduce your waste out put.  I’m not asking you to hold it when you gotta go, but put your eggshells and coffee grounds in your house plants and tomato plants.  Try composting.  You’ll be  reducing your carbon foot print and you’ll make your plants happier!

Re-use:

  • Re-purpose items!  This includes eating your leftovers.
  • Here, here, and here are some great Pinterest boards that have re-using ideas.
  • I love this one: Making re-usable shopping bags out of old t-shirts (they make a great gift too).
  • Mend your clothes- including fallen hems, loose buttons and minor tears.  Sewing kits are inexpensive.  If you don’t know how to sew or even thread a needle, check out YouTube for some tutorials. And hey, you’ll learn a new skills!

Recycle:

  • In some areas, recycling is done by weight (like the majority of the recycling centers we have here).  You bring all of your aluminum cans crushed up or your glass bottles in big garbage bags and they are weighed, and you receive a per lb. price.
  • In other areas (like where my in-laws live back east and very few locations here in So Cal) there are machines that you deposit bottles and cans into one at a time and a per piece bottle deposit is returned to you. Re-Planet is one of those companies.
  • Some areas mandate recycling- Where we live there are special cans: Black for trash, green for yard waste, and blue for recycling.  The items that cannot be returned for a bottle deposit like milk cartons, soup cans, cereal boxes can be placed into the blue bin.
  • Recycling doesn’t only mean bottles and cans , it can also be to give an item a new life and a new home.  Donate clothes and other household items to charity or use freecycle and help your neighbors. I especially like the Buy Nothing Movement.
  • You can also sell items on Craigslist, have a garage sale or sell your items via a consignment shop.  They will go to a new home, you will have kept the stuff from a landfill, and you’ll have a little cash!
  • Did you know that in some states you can recycle your unwanted house paint? Check out PaintCare here for more details!

How do you incorporate the three R’s into your daily life?

New Year’s Resolution #9: Quit Smoking

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#9 is a resolution that I don’t really have a lot of into to share, but I figured that I’d try to help!  Some people need help quitting smoking.

I won’t rag on you about how cigarettes are bad for you, so instead I’ll appeal to your monetary side.  Here is a calculator that will let you know how much money you are wasting.

If you want to try the patch or gum, there should be coupons in the Sunday Inserts in January.

And finally, the CDC has some tips here.

Former smokers, how did you kick the habit?

New Year’s Resolution #8: Learn Something New

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#8 is a resolution that I thought would be closer to the top of the list: Learn something new!

There are lots of ways that you can learn and grow without breaking the bank!

      1. Borrow books from the library- most libraries have their card catalogs online, so you can check and see if your local library branch has the book(s) you are looking for before you step foot in the library.  AND- some libraries have the ability to hold the books for you until you can get down there (usually 24 hours).
      2. Can’t find the books in print near you? Check out Google Books.  There are tons of free books that you can read online.If you head over to Amazon you’ll find thousands of Free E-books on Amazon in all reader formats.
      3. Check out community learning opportunities. Grossmont Adult Education has tons of great classes, including some great Mommy and Me style pre-school classes for kids!
      4. Check YouTube for tutorials or seminars that are of interest to you.
      5. Harvard (yeah, *THAT HARVARD*) has free, no credit open courses here. Other Colleges including MIT, Yale and Stanford offer free online no credit classes for the public to take/sit in on.
      6. Check your local museums for free days for locals.  San Diego Locals- here is a list of free museum days in Balboa Park.
      7. Craftsy has a ton of free classes and patterns! Check out this post with just a few of my favorite classes!
      8. There are tons of free opportunities for kids to learn here. Most public libraries have story time or other free activities and workshops for kids. Check out Red Tricycle’s website for all kinds of free and cheap learning opportunities for your littles!
      9. Love documentaries? Love to read? If you haven’t tried Amazon Prime yet, there is an awesome promotion right now- sign up and get your first 30 days free. Prime gives you access to more than JUST free shipping. You can stream movies, documentaries, enjoy the free Kindle lending library, and more! Start Your Prime Video 30-Day Free Trial Now!

New Year’s Resolution #5 & #6 Exercise & Lose Weight

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Throughout December, I’m going to be posting about New Year’s Resolutions. Each post will have tips and tricks to help you navigate through your resolutions to become more successful at all of your frugal endeavors!
The Number 5 & 6 New Year’s Resolutions on most top ten lists are: Exercise and Lose weight.  I decided to tackle both of these at the same times since they can go hand in hand.

I am not a doctor or dietician.  I will share with you what works for my family, but YMMV, and remember to go to the doctor and get the OK before starting to exercise or diet. Seriously.

#5: Exercise without breaking the bank:  Starting in probably 2 weeks, even before January 1st, there will be ads in the paper, magazines, on the internet and of course commercials on TV advertising free 7-day trial passes for every gym on earth.  Take advantage.  If you haven’t worked at a gym in a long time, or are thinking about joining one, Check out a bunch of different gyms and see which one is a good fit for your goals.  BTW, when those free deals go live, you know I’ll be posting them.

If you aren’t a gym person, check out your local parks. Lots of parks in our local area have special walking loops and even fitness stations (Mast Park in Santee has both!). Other parks in San Diego with fitness/exercise stations include: Mission Bay Park,  Embarcadero Parks North & South, Tidelands Park near the base of the Coronado Bridge as you arrive in Coronado, Hilton Head Park in Rancho San Diego, Chollas Lake Park, and Morley Field (near Balboa Park). If your local park doesn’t have a fitness course, play on the jungle gym or go for a walk!

Luckily in So. Cal. we are blessed with pretty good weather, so outdoor exercise is almost always an option. On those extremely rare days where the weather sucks, try indoor mall walking.  I know, it makes me sound like an old lady, but when it’s cold or rainy, I strap the kiddo in the stroller and we walk a few laps over at Parkway Plaza. A few laps around the mall and I’ve gotten almost 4 miles under my belt! There is also a play area where the kiddo can let his energy out while mama recuperates.

Everything seems to go better with a partner in crime- enlist the help of a friend or family member.  Exercise with a buddy.  Go for a walk, look at holiday lights.  Keep each other accountable!

#6: Lose Weight without losing your shirt.  Losing weight doesn’t have to cost a fortune.  Here are some tips, tricks and deals you can use to save while you lose.

Sign up for free websites that can help you be accountable: Spark People is a great site that can help you track your calories and exercise. I also like Map My Run.  It helps you log activities and gives you a rough idea of how many calories you burn when you are active. And you can use it to log all kinds of physical activity, not just running!

If you are changing your eating habits, your doctor may recommend that you take vitamins.  And they can be expensive.  Keep your eyes open for sales at the drugstores in January and there will be coupons too!

There will be tons of sales and coupon available in January for healthy foods and supplements!

What are your frugal  tips and tricks for exercise and losing weight?  I’d love to hear from you!

2016 New Year’s Resolution #2: I want to save money!

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Over the next two weeks,  I’m going to be posting about New Year’s Resolutions. Each post will have tips and tricks to help you navigate through your resolutions to become more successful at all of your frugal endeavors!

One of the most common New Year’s Resolutions is to SAVE MONEY. Here are just a few simple ways to save money throughout 2016:

1. Make a budget and stick to it.  We have a pretty tight budget at our house- It keeps us on track!

2. Use coupons for everything.  Coupons aren’t just for groceries. Check out sites like Get1Free for coupons to restaurants, day spas, golfing.  If you buy an Entertainment book, there are tons of great coupons for all kinds of meals and activities.

3. Back to coupons (again).  Carry a plastic envelope or coupon wallet with you at all times with coupons that you know you will use.  That way if you decide to have a spontaneous adventure- you can still save money money.

4. Try free activities.  Every community has free activities, check out your local Cragislist (under Community then click Events), community newspaper, or your local Patch for upcoming free events. Or Google “free events +name of your city +month of the year”.

5. Have a goal for your savings.  Saving to save is fine, but if you are saving money towards a goal, it’s harder to blow off the budget.  I mean, really… Would you rather have a new car or a cheeseburger? I thought so.

6. Wait. If you see a big ticket item that you want to buy, wait 10 days and see if the price drops.  Here is an article about the Sales Cycles that take place throughout the year.

7.  This is an oldy, but a goody.  Use It Up, Wear It Out, Make It Do, or Do Without.   Use what you have on hand (substitutions in a recipe are OK, the writer of the cookbook doesn’t care!), repair broken toys, mend clothes.  Add a little water to the last bit of laundry soap to stretch it (You probably use too much anyway!). You don’t need every latest gadget, do dad and thingamagigger. Keeping up with the Joneses is so 1980′s.  Frugality is the new IN thing.  You want to be cool, doncha?

How do you plan to save money in 2016?