Friday, August 14, 2009
Monday, July 27, 2009
On top of finding good things. I also encourage you all to barter! The winter clothes asking price was $7. All I did was say "will you take $4 for all of this," and the guy didn't hesitate in saying "yes." It was that simple! If you think something is over priced, just give an offer to the person. Figure out what it's worth to you and how much you are willing to pay for it. Don't go over that and don't be afraid to walk away empty handed as well.
Monday, July 13, 2009
I know not everyone is into camping, but you should at least give it a try. It will save you a bundle on food and lodging and all of the entertainment is free! Our daughter could not get enough of the lake and enjoyed eating the dirt too. If you don't have all the equipment, see if you can borrow some from a friend or family member. We happen to love it and have most everything we need, but ended up borrowing a bigger tent from a friend since all we have is a two-man backpacking tent.
Enjoy the beauty of nature!
Monday, July 6, 2009
My Story: When I was single, had no bills, and lived on the wild side I ate out for lunch (this does not include dinners) at least 3 times a week. When I did not eat out, I usually got a drink and/or dessert to add to my lunch. I figured out that I spent almost $200/month on eating out. If I had packed my lunch, it would only have cost me about $50/month. If I had packed my lunch everyday I would have saved $150/month and $1800/year.
Go Green: If you use reusable containers and do not buy individual packaged items for your lunches you would be saving a lot of trash from the landfills by making your lunch. Going out to eat not only produces a lot of trash, but wasted food as well.
Problem: It's nice to treat yourself every once and a while and I recommend it! But, my point is that eating out all the time is expensive. That money could be going towards more important things like saving for retirement or buying your own home. Even if I had the money to do it, I probably would not do it. It just seems so wasteful to throw your money away on something that you could reproduce yourself for way cheaper.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
So I have failed at posting things for you guys, but here's one to take for your 4th of July weekend! My sister made Gazpacho for dinner this evening and it was a nice cool dinner that requires no oven being turned on! Gazpacho is a Spanish cold-soup. Its main ingredients are tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, and onion. It was served with cold croutons and cheese. She got the recipe from America's Test Kitchen, but I just did a google for it and a ton of recipes showed up.
Why do you ask that I mention it? Well, every single ingredient (minus the vinegar) came from left overs from my other sister's wedding. Which means it didn't cost us basically anything to make it. This might be a great meal for those of you who have a garden and are trying to use up all your vegetables.
This also brings up a skill that I have not quite mastered yet, but am working on. That is being able to look into your pantry/fridge/freezer, see what needs to be used up, and make a delicious meal out of it. A lot of food, which means money, is wasted from not being able to use it up. I would have never thought of making Gazpacho since I had never heard of it, but my sister had and suggested that as our dinner. I realized that I could learn a ton from someone with more experience. I might be giving her a call next time I have random things to use up. Online is also another good resource. A lot of recipe sites allow you to search by ingredient. Does anyone have good recipe sites they like?
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
I do have a tip on getting free flights before I leave. Once I fly back home from this trip, I will have earned a free round-trip flight from Southwest Airlines. All I did was sign up for their rapid rewards program (which is free) and made sure to use my RR number for every flight I booked. That's it. Easy as pie. Another way to get free flights is to have a credit card that earns you points toward free flights. I've gotten $100 off a flight that way. (But, make sure you are paying your balance every month, it's not worth it if you have to pay interest charges!) Most every airline has a free rewards program, so sign up for which ever one you use. I'll save $250 by using my free round-trip airfare from Southwest.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Even though it costs me time, it's so worth it! I don't have to have a job to get the things that I want. I just need to find someone willing to trade me for something I already have for something I want. I know of a couple that got a boat from a guy who just wanted the trim done in his house. They took two days, put in trim in his house and walked away with a boat. Then there's that guy who started with a paperclip and got a house.......I'll have to interview him someday for his bartering tips. :)
Monday, June 22, 2009
My Story: I often think the same thing when I hear free, but there are many treasures that can be found. One example is I got a window sun shade for my car by glancing at the free bin outside my local thrift store. It doesn't roll up anymore because the metal at the top is slightly bent, but it works for what it was meant for. That's all I care about! It saved me $10.
Another example is that I got a free training toilet and a life jacket from someone who just wanted them out of her house. Her kids were done with them. They are both in excellent condition!
Resource: One nationwide organization that is a great free exchange is The Freecycle Network (http://www.freecycle.org/). There are chapters all over the nation and there's one simple rule, everything exchanged between members must be free. No trading or bartering is allowed. You simply post things you want or are giving away. I once posted that I needed containers for gardening and I had three people respond and I got way more pots than I ever needed. I then passed the extras on to someone else. The only downside is that you have to be fairly quick about responding. Craigslist also has a free section, but you have to be even quicker on that one. Let me know if anyone knows of any others.
Friday, June 19, 2009
I've always enjoyed gardening and I find it therapeutic after a hard day to eat what I have cared for. However, there is also money saving possibilities in it as well. I have used all organic potting soil, seeds, and fertilizer. Though I am not seeking a USDA organic certification, I would probably qualify. We all know organic produce can cost up to twice as much as non-organic. The $0.25-0.50 worth of seeds, $0.50 worth of fertilizer, and $1 worth of water gives me on average $20 worth of produce per pot. Some are higher and some are less with many different factors. This year I did invest about $50 in getting it set up, but I will definitely get my money back with how well the plants are doing! :) Even my husband admitted this year that the garden was worth it. Usually, I have to drag him to weed, water, or anything else to do with the garden.
For those of you who have never gardened before, start out small with one or two different items. Figure out what works in the areas that you have and know that there are a ton of different ways to garden. A good start is getting a basic book from the library or ask someone you know what has worked for them. Even neighbors can have different soil/micro climates, so don't be discouraged if your garden doesn't look like your neighbors. Just keep trying.
Thursday, June 18, 2009
Last month I got a certificate for $9 and bought nifty paperclips for my scrapbooking. They added up to $9 exactly, so I didn't have to pay them anything. Not even sales tax. :) It made me happy.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
There are other online photo print stores that do promotionals similar to this. I used one for http://www.winkflash.com/ and I'm sure you can find more! Sometimes you have to pay shippihng, but it's still cheaper than paying $0.15-0.20 for each print.
Monday, June 15, 2009
My Story: When I first got married, I never really worried about my credit score. I had worked for a mortgage bank for several years and knew it was important, but did not think it would effect me anytime soon. As we started to apply for things like car and student loans we quickly figured out how important it can be. Luckily, our scores have both been really good. We always got good rates and really started to see how our score saved us.
I'm going to lay out a scenario for you now. It comes from Suze Orman's The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous, & Broke. "On a four-year, $20,000 car loan, we're talking about paying an extra $103 a month if your FICO score is in the 500-589 range rather than the top range of 720+. That's $1,236 a year, which comes to $4,944 over the four years of the loan."
$4,944 is a lot of money in an average 5-year car loan, but check out this site that gives a scenario for a mortgage loan. You could save $150,000 over the life of your home loan! http://www.bankrate.com/bosre/news/Financial_Literacy/June07_credit_score_savings_chart_a1.asp?s=1&caret=36d
To help with your score, make sure your credit reports are error-free. Go to www.annualcreditreport.com to see your credit report (not your score). To request your score, you'll need to contact the three different credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, & TrasUnion). There is a fee for your score, but not your report. Even if you don't want to pay to see your score, AT LEAST make sure there's nothing on your report that does not belong there or is incorrect.
Friday, June 12, 2009
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
If you have kids, next time you plan an evening out see if your friend or neighbor will swap with you. Or, if they don't have kids see if they'll swap something else with you (dinner, cleaning, fixing something, etc.). You'd be surprised how many people out their are willing to barter for things.
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
I have been borrowing my sister-in-laws bike for almost 3 years now and have always had problems with the gears slipping. I have been putting up with it, but now I have to pull a trailer for my girl and I live up hill. Not fun. So, I have been fiddling with the idea of buying a nice bike off of Craigslist and have found a few that looked good. Before I did anything I visited my local bike shop and talked with someone a little more knowledgeable about bikes to talk options. Turns out my bike only needed a $20 part. (The ride home was filled with amazing shifting.) The bikes on Craigslist were in the $200 range. I just saved $180! :)
I'm still stuck with a old, kind of beat up bike (sorry Emily), but I consider it repayment for her letting me use it all this time (thanks Emily). Even if I had bought a bike 3 years ago, it still would have cost me more than $20.
Monday, June 8, 2009
We all know that prices differ from store to store and from area to area, so you can always save money by comparing prices and shopping around. It might just pay to stop by just one more store to get a better price. (For skeptics, please read below...)
I hate to do this, but I have found a way to kind of get around this time sucking tip. I find a store that is really good at informing me about a type of product and decide there what I want to purchase. Then I can go home, look up prices online or call other stores, and find out who has the better price. Also, a lot of stores match or beat prices. My husband and I bought some front-loading washer and dryer set a couple of years and used this method. We ended up saving $500 by having the store beat a competitors price. It's so worth it!
Problems: It can be time consuming and gas guzzling to do this since you will have to take at least two trips out to the store. However, think about how much money you could possibly save. For the 2 hours of work I did for the washer and dryer, we saved $500. Which at the time was an entire weeks worth of pay. Even if you only did this for big purchases, it would pay off.
Friday, June 5, 2009
Thursday, June 4, 2009
If you haven't bought second-hand before, I would encourage you to give it a try. It's not all that disgusting as some people think. Most things clean up well if you have the right tool (ex. some good bleach works on a lot of things) and others you can find from people who have the same cleanliness standard as you. Plus, it saves you money, especially if you know how to barter and deal.
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
Now to put a price on that. It was about 25 cents worth of yogurt, 2 cents worth of sugar, and I got the rasberries for free. 8 popsicles for 27 cents! If you were to go to the store and buy good fruit popsicles (I'm not talking about the flavored/colored water popsicles) they would cost you $5 for a box of 6. Even if you added the price for buying fruit to the batch I made, the total cost would only be around $2 or $3. Depending on how much you, or your kids, eat popsicles you could end up saving quite a bit and they taste better! Plus, you don't have to run to the store everytime you run out and your kid is whinning for more.
I'm eating one right now, and it's yummy.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
Thanks for the comment, Elizabeth!
Ok, so now you're thinking in your head all the reasons why it's nice to have a membership. Well, I probably agree with some of them.
-If you have more than 2 kids (max capacity in a double stroller) it's nice to be able to drop them off at daycare and have an hour to yourself.
-In the winter when it's cold and rainy, I don't want to take my daughter out in it. And honestly I don't want to be out their either.
-Sometimes it's not safe or possible to walk out on to the street where you live. There are condos just down the way from me that don't have a sidewalk in front of their complex and it's on a major highway with no stoplight nearby.
There are probably more, but just ask yourself this: does your drive to the gym save you time or money? That 15 minute drive each way could have been spent jogging in your neighborhood, doing yard work, mowing your lawn, playing frisbee with your kids, riding your bike to work, walking to the grocery store, or doing an exercise video at home.
Monday, June 1, 2009
Price of one-way, peak, 2 zone fare = $2.50
Monthly Pass = $72
(Work #1) Parking in Seattle = $8/day or $168/month
(Work #2) Parking in Seattle = $12/day or $252/month
Gas = $4/day or $84/month (30 mpg, $3/gallon, 20 miles one-way)
My first job in Seattle paid for 1/2 of my monthly bus pass, so I ended up paying $36/month for a pass. If I had driven it would have cost me $252/month. That's a savings of $216/month or $2,592/year!
My second job in Seattle paid for even more of my pass and it was a flex pass, so I could use it on whatever or whenever. I had to pay $20/month for that. If I had driven it would have cost me $336/month. That's a savings of $316/month or $3,792/year!
If that's not a motivator to at least look at the bus route, I don't know what is! These calculations don't even count wear and tear on a car or extra gas due to traffic.
Problems: The only down-side is having to rely on the bus schedule and routes. When I was commuting into Seattle it wasn't really a problem because there are lots of routes into the city; I had options. For those who don't work or live in a bigger city, there might not be close routes or, in my husbands case, it could drastically increase your commute time (his 15 minute commute turns into a 60 minute commute). However, my commute time was shortened when I rode the bus, and I got lots of reading/sleeping/homework done!
For Western Washington residents: Just google one of the following to get to their website: Community Transit (Snohomish County)
King County Metro Transit (http://metro.kingcounty.gov/)
Sound Transit (Regional Co-Op for Central Puget Sound area)
Saturday, May 30, 2009
Friday, May 29, 2009
You can read more about it and see pics on my husbands review of it on Consupo.com:
Thursday, May 28, 2009
woot.com - This site has one bargain a day and once it sells out (which can happen faster than you think) they are done for the day. A new item is not posted until the next day. They also have some spin off sites, shirts.woot.com and wine.woot.com. They are also a pretty witty and fun company. Just reading their product descriptions is worth the trip to their site.
tanga.com - They are similar to Woot in that they have a current deal that sells out, but another pops up after the current one sells out. You don't have to wait an entire day to see the next one. They also have other deals, community discussions, and games.
slickdeals.net - This site is a user-driven deal sharing site. Organized by day, they list deals that you can get from stores, websites, restaurants, etc. They also have a coupon section.
Let me know what your favorite sites are!
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Another instance (again at Lowes) where we asked to be compensated, this time because we waited 30 minutes for someone to help us, we got $100 off a new fridge! Now that was definitely worth it. :) Don't be afraid to ask to be compensated!
Monday, May 25, 2009
Sunday, May 24, 2009
If you haven't discovered $1 movies, just pay a little more attention the next time you are at your grocery store. They're usually in the front somewhere. Also, before you head out to a $1 movie machine, do a google for free codes and enjoy a free movie (minus the cost of gas to get to the store).
Friday, May 22, 2009
Monday, May 18, 2009
Friday, May 15, 2009
June 5-7 Celebration of the town's 100th birthday. Music, arts and crafts, historic tours and more, at various times and locations in downtown Skykomish, Railroad Avenue and Highway 2 (360-677-2388 or www.town.skykomish.wa.us).
Bastyr's Herb and Food Fair
June 6 Garden tours, nationally/locally known herb and nutrition speakers, cooking demonstrations, arts and crafts activities for children, and live musical entertainment, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Bastyr University, 14500 Juanita Drive N.E., Kenmore; free (425-602-3152 or www.bastyr.edu).
Beacon Hill Festival
June 6 Entertainment, local food, carnival games, bounce toys, vendors, silent auction, 11 a.m. Jefferson Community Center, 3801 Beacon Ave. S., Seattle; free (206-684-7481).
Blast from the Past Town Celebration and Century ride
June 6 A noncompetitive bicycle ride through scenic, flat Skagit Valley, benefiting SWAN (Serving Women Across Nations), a local humanitarian organization dedicated to serving the needs of women and children in developing countries. Rides start at 7:30 a.m., downtown Sedro-Woolley; $12-$60 (360-941-3782 or www.blastfromthepastcentury.org).
June 6 Fun runs, parade down Main Street, art show and all-day festival in the park with food, games crafts, music and performances, McCormick Park, 26200 N.E. Stephens Street, Duvall; free (425-788-1185 or www.duvallwa.gov/duvalldays/index.html).
Lynden Heritage Celebration
June 6 Celebration of Lynden heritage including the Taste of Lynden, Farmers Day Parade, classic car show. music and more, 9:30 a.m.-9 p.m., Fifth and Front streets, downtown Lynden, Whatcom County (360-354-5995 or www.lynden.org.Tastin'
June 6-7 Hydroplane racing, personal watercraft racing, classic car show, kids' activities and food vendors, 9:30 a.m.-7 p.m. June 6, 9:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m., June 7, Lake Sammamish State Park, 20606 S.E. 56th St., Issaquah; $5-$10 (206-351-3330 or www.tastinracin.com).
Ocean Shores International Kite Challenge
June 6-7 Kite fliers from around the world gather for competitions, activities and kite displays, June 6-7, Ocean Shores Convention Center, Ocean Shores; free (360-289-0667 or www.cuttingedgekites.com).
June 6-7 Celebrate Filipino independence at this annual celebration of the arts and culture of the Philippines. Music, dance, food, children's activities, drill teams, rock bands, exhibits and martial arts, Center House, Seattle Center; free (206-684-7200 or www.seattlecenter.com/events/festivals).
BellinghamScottish Highland Games
June 6-7 Scottish Idol competition, 7 p.m. June 6; Games and events to celebrate Scottish heritage, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. June 7, Hovander Park, 5299 Neilsen Rd., Ferndale; $7-$10 (360-647-8500 or www.bhga.org).
June 6-7 Fun Run, parade, regatta, music and entertainment, food vendors, historic boat displays, arts and crafts and kids activities, 8 a.m.-7 p.m. June 6, 7 a.m.-4:30 p.m. June 7, downtown Gig Harbor (253-851-6865 or www.maritimegig.com).
Summer Concerts at the Locks
June 6-7 Free concerts on the lawn at Hiram M. Chittenden (Ballard) Locks; Boeing Employees Concert Band, June 6; Betucada Yemanja, June 7; 2 p.m., 3015 N.W. 54th St., Seattle; free (206-783-7059).
Wallingford Garden Tour
June 7 Self-guided tour of private gardens, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Wallingford Neighborhood Office, 2100 N. 45th St., Seattle; $15 (206-632-3165 or www.wallingford.org).
June 7 Scenic section of Lake Washington Boulevard closed to motorized traffic, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Lake Washington Boulevard from Mount Baker Beach to Seward Park, Seattle (www.seattle.gov/parks/bicyclesundayw).
Sorticulture Garden Arts Festival
June 12-15 Garden art sale, horticulture experts, specialty nurseries plant sale, display gardens, music, kids' activities, food vendors, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. June 12, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. June 13, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. June 14, Legion Memorial Park, 145 Alverson Boulevard at West Marine View Drive, Everett (425-257-7107 or www.snohomish.org).
Doggie Olympic Games
June 13 Pooches and their handlers vie for gold, silver and bronze medals in 12 fun events, 1 p.m., Ocean Beach Boulevard and Bolstad Avenue, Long Beach, Pacific County; $10-$40 entry fee, free to spectators (800-451-2542 or www.funbeach.com/events/doggieolympics).
June 13-14 Loggers perform daredevil maneuvers and feats of strength; equipment and truck displays and barbecue, Deming Log Show Grounds, 3295 Cedarville Road, Deming, Whatcom County (360-592-3051 or www.demingloggingshow.com).
Farm Animal Day
June 13-14 Meet goats, ducks and alpacas at celebration featuring wagon rides, music, farm animals, refreshments. Seasonal fruits and vegetables, U-pick and farmstand; events at 11 a.m.-3 p.m., farm open 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m., South 47 Farm, 15410 N.E. 124th St., Redmond; free (425-869-9777 or www.south47farm.com).
Summer Concerts at the Locks
June 13-14 Free concerts on the lawn at Hiram M. Chittenden (Ballard) Locks; Highline Community Symphonic Band, June 13; Woodinville Jazz Ensemble, June 14; 2 p.m., 3015 N.W. 54th St., Seattle (206-783-7059).
June 14 Scenic section of Lake Washington Boulevard closed to motorized traffic, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Lake Washington Boulevard from Mount Baker Beach to Seward Park, Seattle (www.seattle.gov/parks/bicyclesunday).
Leavenworth International Accordion Festival
June 18-21 Accordion music in its many forms, with parade, workshops, jam sessions and performances. Downtown Leavenworth, Front Street and Ninth Street (509-548-5807 or www.accordioncelebration.com).
June 19 Inflatable rides, mini golf, arts and crafts, face painting, activities and information fair, concessions, entertainment, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Auburn Game Farm Park, 3030 R St. S.E., Auburn; free (253-931-3043 or www.auburnwa.gov).
Edmonds Arts Festival
June 19-21 Arts and crafts, entertainment and children's activities, 11 a.m.-9 p.m. June 19, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. June 20, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. June 21, Frances Anderson Center, 700 Main St., Edmonds; free (425-771-6412 or www.edmondsartsfestival.com).
June 20-21 Display of more than 50 classic wooden vessels, many open for boarding (wear soft-soled shoes), highlighting Chris Craft vessels, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. June 20, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. June 21, Bell Harbor Marina, 2203 Alaskan Way, Seattle; free (425-467-1719 or www.classicyacht.org).
June 20-21 Exploring the Mountains to Sound Greenway from Seattle to Central Washington with more than 25 events in 10 communities along Interstate 90. Call or see Web site for individual events and schedules. Various times and locations (206-382-5565 or www.mtsgreenway.org/greenwaydays).
Summer Concerts at the Locks
June 20-21 Free performances on the lawn at Hiram M. Chittenden (Ballard) Locks; Nordic Heritage Museum, children's dance, June 20; Elliott Bay Pipe Band, June 21; 2 p.m., 3015 N.W. 54th St., Seattle (206-783-7059).
June 20 Art exhibits, lectures, dance group performances, kids fashion show, dance and food vendors, 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Center House, Seattle Center; free (206-295-6626 or www.iaca-seattle.org).
Fremont Fair and Solstice Parade
June 20-21 Solstice Parade, noon June 20; fair with music, food vendors, arts and crafts, 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. June 20, 10:30 a.m.-7 p.m. June 21, around Fremont district and at Adobe Plaza Stage, North 34th Street and Fremont Avenue North, Seattle; free (206-297-6801 or www.fremontfair.org).
Sweet Strawberryand Kite Festival
June 20 Celebrate the start of harvest season with sweet, fresh strawberries on the farm. Also featuring stunt kites and big kites with Washington Kitefliers Association, 10 a.m., V2 Farm, 20613 S.E. 436th St., Enumclaw; $7 (206-353-6695 or www.v2farm.com).
PT Cruiser Rendezvous
June 20 Puget Sound Cruisers PT Cruiser car show, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Country Village, 23732 Bothell-Everett Highway, Bothell; $5 (206-367-9452 or www.pugetsoundcruisers.org).
June 21 A traditional Scandinavian family celebration featuring crafts, folk dancing and food, 11 a.m., Vasa Park Resort & Ballroom, 3549 W. Lake Sammamish Parkway S.E., Bellevue; free (425-746-3260 or www.vasaparkresort.com).
June 21 Scenic section of Lake Washington Boulevard closed to motorized traffic, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Lake Washington Boulevard from Mount Baker Beach to Seward Park, Seattle (www.seattle.gov/parks/bicyclesunday).
Mason County Fair and Rodeo
June 24-26 Carnival rides, entertainment, farm exhibits, vendors, rodeo, June 24-26, Mason County Fairgrounds, 751 W. Fairgrounds Road, Shelton; free (www.masoncountyfair.org).
America's Dixieland Jazz Festival
June 25-28 A celebration of local young and old jazz musicians, June 25-28, St. Martin's University, 5300 Pacific Ave., Lacey; $15-$125 (360-943-9123 or www.olyjazz.com).
Taste of Tacoma
June 26-28 Taste of Tacoma features 30 restaurants, more than 30 food-product companies, art and craft vendors, the Wine & Rose wine-tasting, four outdoor music stages, a comedy club, beer gardens, carnival and amusement rides, 11 a.m.-9 p.m. June 26-27, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. June 28, Point Defiance Park, 5400 N. Pearl St., Tacoma; free (425-283-5050 or www.tasteoftacoma.com).
SeaTac International Festival
June 26-28 Local performers with ethnic and cultural music and entertainment for kids, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. June 26, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. June 27, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. June 28, Angle Lake Park, 19408 International Blvd., SeaTac; (206-973-4680 or www.ci.seatac.wa.us/park/seinternationalfestival.htm).
Olympic Music Festival
June 26-Sept. 6 The summer-long classical-music festival. Program varies by date. See Web site for schedule and details. Saturdays and Sundays through Sept. 6, Olympic Music Festival Barn, 7360 Center Road, Quilcene, Jefferson County; $12-$27 (206-527-8839 or www.olympicmusicfestival.org).
Everett Gardens of Merit Tour
June 27 Self-guided tour of six private gardens in Everett. See Web site for schedule and details. Plant sale and raffle at Evergreen Arboretum from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Evergreen Arboretum and Gardens, Marine Drive at Alverson Boulevard, Everett; $10 (425-257-8597 or www.evergreenarboretum.com).
Greenwood Car Show
June 27 A showcase of more than 500 classic and custom cars lined up along Greenwood Avenue, from North 72nd to North 87th Streets, with bands, food vendors and craft booths, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Greenwood District, Seattle; $10-$25 car entry fee, free to spectators (206-789-1148 or www.greenwoodcarshow.com).
Party in the Park 30K Trail Run
June 27 30K run, kids activities, horse demonstrations and food. Check-in and events begin at 7 a.m., Bridle Trails State Park, Northeast 53rd Street and 116th Avenue Northeast, Kirkland; $15-$40 (425-822-9826 or www.bridletrails.org).
Celebrate the Horse
June 27-28 Horse clinics and demonstrations with an art walk and silent auction. Proceeds benefit People Helping Horses; 9:30 a.m.-7 p.m. June 27, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. June 28, Puyallup Fair and Events Center, 110 Ninth Ave. S.W., Puyallup; $8-$15 (360-435-9393 or www.celebratethehorse.org).
Bellevue Strawberry Festival
June 27-28 Celebration featuring fresh strawberries, agricultural displays, games and entertainment, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. June 27, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. June 28, Crossroads International Park, 16000 N.E. 10th St., Bellevue; free (425-450-1049 or www.bellevuestrawberryfestival.org).
Summer Concerts at the Locks
June 27-28 Free concerts on the lawn at Hiram M. Chittenden (Ballard) Locks; Pacific Cascade Big Band, June 27; Microsoft Orchestra, June 28; 2 p.m., 3015 N.W. 54th St., Seattle; free (206-783-7059).
Backyard Habitat Family Fair
June 28 Celebrate our backyards as habitat for wildlife. Family-friendly, nature-oriented activities, nature walks, more, 1-4 p.m., IslandWood, 4450 Blakely Ave. N.E., Bainbridge Island; free (206-842-5955 or www.islandwood.org).
June 28 Music and dance performances, kids activities, flower crowns, craft and food vendors, and presentations by the Skandia Folk Dance Society, 11 a.m.-6 p.m., Saint Edward State Park, 14445 Juanita Drive N.E., Kenmore; (206-784-7470 or www.skandia-folkdance.org/Midsommarfest/midsommarfest.html).
June 28 Lakefront closed to motor vehicles, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Lake Washington Boulevard from Mount Baker Beach to Seward Park, Seattle (www.seattle.gov/parks/bicyclesunday).
Shoreline Arts Festival
June 28-29 Entertainment, arts and crafts and food vendors, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. June 28, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. June 29, Shoreline Conference Center, 18560 First Ave. N.E., Shoreline; free (206-417-4645 or www.shorelinearts).
Thursday, May 14, 2009
My Story: For 5 years my husband and I cooked only for the two of us. We started out cooking our families recipes, but then we would have the same meal for an entire week. Blah! I got smart and started cutting them in half. We didn't have to throw out 1/2 a pan of good food that we either got sick of or it started to mold.
Go Green: Once again, it helps to eliminate waste and keeps things out of the landfills.
Problems: Sometimes finding a good cookbook is hard to find, and trying to find one that has recipes for 1 or 2 people is really hard. That's why I've found cutting the recipes is much easier. Another problem is that sometimes the recipe is hard to cut in half (i.e. do you really want to cut an egg in half and then save that 1/2 an egg for a later date?). If you fail the first time at cutting a recipe, try again!
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Plain and simple, put food in your freezer that you are not going to use before it goes bad.
My Story: Most of us have been there. We buy food for a meal, make the meal, and then watch as the leftovers get moldy. To combate this, I have gotten really good at filling my freezer. After the meal, I put individual servings in different tupperwares and put them in the fridge. If they haven't been eaten after a few days, I throw them in the freezer. Then you have meals ready to eat when you have a busy night and no food goes to waste. Also, if you have bulk items left after the meal (i.e. pasta sauce, bread, gravy, etc.) you can put those in the freezer as well for a later date.
Go Green: Unless you have a compost for those moldy meals, this way you end up wasting less! Also, you run to the store less for food.
Problems: The number one thing I have found is that sometimes the leftovers don't always get eaten when they have been frozen. Somethings they don't freeze well, or never sound appetizing again. Thus, I have started to only freeze things that I know I or my husband will eat again. Also, we tend to fill up our freezer after a couple of weeks of this. We then have to eat leftovers until we free up some space.
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
What does this have to do with saving money? Well, I'm a firm believer in saving money by making informed decisions. No sense in wasting your money on a product that others have already tried and can tell you to stear clear of. If more people got on there and gave us their thoughts on products, companies, etc. it could be an amazing resource.
With that said, everyone go to Consupo.com and let your voice be heard!
Monday, May 11, 2009
My Story: After almost 5 years of marriage, I finally convinced my husband to let me cut his hair on a regular basis. He had let me do it occasionally until then. We bought a hair cutting kit from Costco for $25 and have used it ever since. After just a year, we have saved $95 (10 haircuts at $12 a piece - the cost of the kit). For the next 40 years of marriage we would save $4,800!
I have never been too picky about my hair and have had others cut it my entire life. I don't dye it either, which helps with the cost. By allowing others to cut my hair, I save about $60 a year.
Go Green: You don't have to drive anywhere??? :)
Problems: For those of you who love your hair, it's hard to trust your spouse or friend to cut your hair. However, I'm sure you know at least one professional who could cut your hair and you could do something for them in exchange (i.e. babysitting, cook dinner, etc.).
My Story: I was taught by my awesome mother to sew and am very grateful for the skill! I can do pretty much anything and have saved many articles of clothing by repairing them instead of giving them away. Also, I am able to repair clothes I get from thrift stores, garage sales, friends, and even dept. stores and get killer deals on them. I got a designer shirt from Macy's after Christmas for $5 because there was a rip in it. I sewed it up and you can't even tell. Also, I also got a pair of pants for $3 because it was missing a button. I took a button I already had and put it on, and voila! a perfectly good pair of pants.
Go Green: You are able to reduce the amount of wasted clothes that end up in the land fills, reuse your clothing for years after zippers and buttons fail, and recycle clothing into other things (ex. blankets).
Problems: You need to learn how to sew and sewing classes & machines are expensive. Ask a friend that sews for help and ask if you can borrow their machine whenever you need it. Let them know what you can do for them in return.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Friday, May 8, 2009
My Story: I can't tell you how many times this has saved me! My first example is with the tupperware that I have. They have a 5 year warranty and about 2 years into using them, two of them were cracking. I called the company and they sent me replacements, no questions asked! The next year another one was cracking and I called again. This time they had me take pictures of them and send them to them, but then 2 weeks later I had a brand new one on my door step! Didn't cost me a thing. The other example I have is with my baby stroller. The parent cup-holder broke on it within the first year I had it and, again, all I had to do was call the company and they sent me a new one for free. To replace it would have cost $15 + shipping costs.
Go Green: Wait....I'm thinking.....ok here I go, some products would be useless if a part was broken on it and if the part replacement cost is close to actual product replacement cost, then you might as well replace it, right? Well, not if it's replaced for free. That way you don't have to toss that perfectly good product. :)
Problem: The only problems I thought of is having to store the information (though mine only takes up about 6 inches worth of filing space) and the time it takes to make sure you gather all of the product manuals, receipts, registration info, etc. But, I definitely think the time spent is worth it!
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Today's tip came from my sister, Carrie. When I read the first line of her e-mail I did the same thing you are doing right now, thinking "yeah right, you must be crazy!" But, as I read further along, I caught her drift. What she said was that we should cut back the amount of trips to the store, and we will spend less. You buy what you need (and occasionally what you "need"), but don't end up with a huge excess of food, clothes, scrapbooking supplies, etc. How many times do you run to the store for one item and come out with a few things that caught your attention, but that you didn't really need?
My Story: As I pondered this, I came to completely agree with my sister. For Example, I try to limit my grocery store shopping to once a week, and do a pretty good job of staying on budget when I do. It's when I go a couple of times a week that I tend to go over on budget. Also, I think that the more errands I run the more money I spend on things I don't need. I justify this spending by saying that they are on sale, or I just think it's a must have.
Go Green: First off you use less gas, which is less polution. Also, you don't buy things you think you need, but don't really, and then end up throwing away later (again keeping things out of our landfills).
Problems: Sometimes you have to go to the store to get an item. It's the way it is and there's nothing you can do about it. However, you can do something about how you act when you are in the store. Don't browse. Go to the item, get it, and go. Make a list and stick to it! If there is something else you see that is a good deal, make sure you ask yourself if you really need and if could you do with out it. If it's something you normally buy, then it might be good to get it then. Go when you are in a hurry so you don't have time to mess around with things you are not there for. Just figure out what strategy works best for you!
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
Tip #1: Get rid of those throw away paper products.
How much money do you spend on kleenexs, paper towels, paper napkins, and paper plates? For just my husband and I, we could easily spend $150-200 a year on these products. Now imagine if you had a family of 4 (and if you have any kids, you know you run thru those things like crazy!). It's so easy (and surprisingly inexpensive) to invest in some cloth napkins, hankies, cloth rags, and a plastic (and dishwasher safe) dish set for picnics and parties.
My story: I have found several sets of cloth napkins for $0.50 a piece at garage sales and thrift stores, I received some old rags from my mother-in-law, I bought a package of 9 hankies at the store for $6 (40% off), and I found some plastic dishes at a thrift store for $5. So, for about $30 I have basically eliminated our need for one time use paper products.
Go Green: Did I mention that it also keeps that stuff out of the land fills?
Problems: One thing that we have found with replacing these items is that we occasionally need them for out of the ordinary things. I like to use paper towels to clean up things in the kitchen that have raw egg or meat in them. I always keep a roll handy, but hardly use it. It takes me a year to go thru one roll!
When you are sick, the last thing you want to blow your nose with is a rough hankie. So, we keep one box of nice and soft kleenex's for such an occasion.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Seattle Art Museum
Seattle Permanent collection includes Australian Aboriginal art, African art, American art, ancient Mediterranean and Islamic art, Asian and European art, modern and contemporary art and textiles, SAM Shop, Taste restaurant; special exhibit, "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness," American paintings, through May 25; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 100 University St., Seattle; $9-$15, ages 12 and younger free, first Thursdays free admission for all, first Fridays free for ages 62 and older, second Fridays free for ages 13-19 with ID from 5-9 p.m. (206-654-3100 or www.seattleartmuseum.org).
Experience Music Project/Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame
Seattle Music museum with interactive and interpretive exhibits on rock 'n' roll, its roots and recent genres; sci-fi robots, monsters, aliens, spaceships, art and literature, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily, hours may vary due to special events, Seattle Center, Seattle; combo EMP/SFM admission $15/adults, $12/ages 5-17 and ages 65 and older; free admission 5-8 p.m. first Thursday of each month (206-EMPLIVE or www.emplive.com).
Frye Art Museum
Seattle Collection of 19th- and 20th-century American, German and French representational paintings plus temporary exhibitions, museum store, cafe, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, until 8 p.m. Thursdays, noon-5 p.m. Sunday, 704 Terry Ave., Seattle; free (206-622-9250 or www.fryeart.org).
Museum of History & Industry
Seattle Photographs, artifacts and exhibits on the growth of the Puget Sound region including Seattle in the 1880s, Great Seattle Fire; special exhibit "The Art of Warner Bros. Cartoons," drawings, paintings and related objects featuring Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, Sylvester, Tweety Bird, Yosemite Sam and other characters from classic Warner Bros. cartoons of the 1930s through 1960, through May 17; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily, until 8 p.m. on first Thursdays, 2700 24th Ave. E., Seattle; $6-$8, free on first Thursdays (206-324-1126 or www.seattlehistory.org).
Wing Luke Asian Museum
Seattle The history, culture and art of Seattle's Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Filipino, Pacific Islander and Southeast Asian communities, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday, 719 King St., Seattle; $5-$8, free on first Thursdays and third Saturdays of every month (206-623-5124 or www.wingluke.org
Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture
Seattle "Coffee: The World in Your Cup," the story behind the coffee we drink, with weekend coffee tastings, at the museum through Sept. 7; permanent exhibits, dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals, a walk-through volcano, traditions of the Pacific Rim; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily, open until 8 p.m. first Thursdays, 17th Avenue Northeast and 45th Street, University of Washington, Seattle; $5-$8, free admission on first Thursdays (206-543-5590 or www.burkemuseum.org).
Log House Museum
Seattle Restored 1903 structure a few blocks from the site of the 1851 landing of the Denny Party, the first white settlers in Seattle, with historical displays; noon-4 p.m. Thursdays-Sundays, 3003 61st Ave. S.W., Seattle; $1-$3; one hour tour, $2 (206-938-5293 or www.loghousemuseum.org).
Museum of Flight
Seattle Display of aircraft, air-traffic control tower; children's area, history of aviation, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily, until 9 p.m. first Thursdays, airpark plane tours 11 a.m.-3:30 p.m. daily, 9404 E. Marginal Way S., Seattle; $7.50-$14, first Thursday of each month free from 5-9 p.m. only (206-764-5720 or www.museumofflight.org).
Bellevue Arts Museum
Bellevue Exhibits and programs exploring art and design, emphasizing the work of regional artists, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday, noon-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; guided tours at 1 p.m. daily, 510 Bellevue Way N.E., Bellevue; $7-$9, half price on Mondays through April, free on the first Friday of each month (425-519-0770 or www.bellevuearts.org).
KidsQuest Children's Museum
Bellevue Indoor treehouse, backyard nature, garage workshop with tools and basic machines, waterways activities, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, noon-5 p.m. Sunday, in Factoria Mall, 4091 Factoria Blvd. S.E., Bellevue; $7, 5-8 p.m. free every Friday (425-637-8100 or www.kidsquestmuseum.org).
Kids Discovery Museum
Bainbridge For children through age 8, creative play, hands-on art room, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays, noon-4 p.m. Sundays, 305 Madison Ave. N., Bainbridge, $5, free on first Thursdays (206-855-4650 or www.kidimu.org).
Renton History Museum
Renton Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibit on the nation's diverse regional cooking and eating traditions over 500 years, through May 9, history of the Duwamish Indians and Renton's coal-mining and logging days, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, 235 Mill Ave. S., Renton; $1-$3, free on the first Wednesdays and third Saturdays (425-255-2330 or www.rentonhistory.org).
White River Valley Museum
Auburn Pioneer, Native American and Japanese history, 1920-era downtown Auburn exhibit, noon-4 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays, 918 H St. S.E., Auburn; $1-$2, free on Wednesdays (253-288-7433 or www.wrvmuseum.org).
Shoreline Historical Museum
Shoreline Hands-on exhibits on the history of Lake Forest Park/Shoreline/North Seattle with general store, farm house and photo archives, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, 749 N. 175th St., Shoreline; free (206-542-7111 or www.shorelinehistoricalmuseum.org).
Washington State History Museum
Tacoma Washington's geographic diversity and human history from the indigenous peoples through 20th-century immigration, featuring "Women's Votes, Women's Voices," through Sept. 27, celebrating 100 years since women were granted the right to vote with artifacts and interactive activities, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday, noon-5 p.m. Sunday, Washington State History Museum, 1911 Pacific Ave., Tacoma; $6-$8/person or $25/family, two adults and up to four children; free admission 3-8 p.m. on third Thursday of each month (888-272-3500 or www.washingtonhistory.org).
Tacoma Art Museum
Tacoma Art from the 18th century to the present, including an extensive collection of Chihuly glass, resource and education center; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays, until 8 p.m. Thursdays, noon-5 p.m. Sundays, 1701 Pacific Ave., Tacoma; $6.50-$7.50, third Thursday free (253-272-4258 or www.tacomaartmuseum.org).