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12 Budget-Friendly Things to Do With the Kids on Winter Break

Need Things to Do with Kids on Winter Break?

The winter break is upon us and that means two full weeks with the kids at home. It can either be two weeks of fun or two weeks of hearing, “I’m BORED” 473 times a day! This year I’m determined to be prepared with a calendar of activities to keep boredom at bay without breaking my holiday budget. Here are 12 budget-friendly things to do with your kids on winter break!

Please note that I use affiliate links in this post. Clicking and purchasing through the links helps me in a small financial way, thank you!

 Need Things to Do with Kids on Winter Break? Check out this budget-friendly list of 12 things to do with kids on winter break.

 

Seasonal Tabletop Craft Decor

Add a bit of joy to the house with a simple craft. These would be so pretty decorating a tabletop as a centerpiece. I plan on making these with the kids on winter break. We have pine trees lining our street so finding them will be easy enough but if you don’t have them readily available, they are sold online. To create your own pinecone centerpiece you’ll need Ponderosa Pine Cones, White Acrylic Paint, Small Clay Pots and Gold Stars.

12 Budget-Friendly Things to Do With the Kids on Winter Break

Photo Credit & Link from Town & Country Living

Holiday Titles from the Library

We have a small collection of holiday books and movies that we pull out during this time of year. Pick up a few new seasonal story books, music CDs or DVDs from the library for entertainment this holiday. You can often reserve them in advance online as well.

Pajama Day

Declare a PJ Day! Stack up all those holiday books and pile the pillows and blankets on the floor in the living room for a cozy day in your pajamas. Make a special treat like popcorn or Rice Krispy treats served with cocoa and marshmallows and let everyone lounge and relax.

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Gymboree Gymmies come in the cutest holiday patterns!

Holiday Art Project

Last year my daughter made this in school. Give each child a canvas, acrylic paints and a brush and let them create their own winter scene that you can pull out with the decorations each year. To make your own painting you’ll need a Stretched Canvas, Acrylic Paint Set, Paint Brush Set and Crafting Plastic Drop Cloth

 Need Things to Do with Kids on Winter Break? Check out this budget-friendly list of 12 things to do with kids on winter break.

Window Scenes

When I was a girl my grandparents let us us acrylic paints on the inside of the living room windows to create a holiday scene. I wish I had a picture to show you! It was a highlight of our season and we painted new scenes every year. My other grandmother had the cutest retro window clings and we’d decorate with those and rearrange them throughout the season. Try these adorable seasonal window decor ideas- White Snowflakes Window Clings,  Crayola Washable Window Markers, Super Window Sticker Art

Movie Marathon

Pile up a stack of those Christmas movies and work your way through them. I recently picked up A Christmas Story which my kids hadn’t seen but is one of my absolute favorites! White Christmas is my 13-yr old’s holiday favorite and it’s streaming on Netflix right now. My preschooler loves The Polar Express so we’ve already seen that one several times this year!

Need Things to Do with Kids on Winter Break? Check out this budget-friendly list of 12 things to do with kids on winter break.

Cut Snowflakes

Coffee filter snowflakes are easy for older kids to make and look so pretty taped to a window or strung in a garland. Cheap and easy entertainment and decor in one! To make this craft you’ll need Coffee Filters and Titanium Softgrip Detail Scissors

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Coffee Filter Ornament craft and image from The Pink Couch

Snuggly Knotted Blanket Making

This one is easy enough for older kids to make on their own. Consider crafting a few as gifts or to donate. You’ll need a good, sharp pair of scissors because it require quite a bit of cutting. But the cozy soft blanket you’ll have at the end is worth it! You’ll need Winter Fleece Fabric by the yard and Fabric Scissors with Comfort Grip

fleece-blanket

Knotted blanket tutorial and image from Sewlicious Home Decor

Nature Walk

Kids on winter break get stir crazy from being cooped up inside. Bundle up and head outside for some fresh air and a blast of nature! I did a quick search on Pinterest and found a free printable for a Winter Adventure Hunt from Montessori Nature.

Cookie Baking

Most kids love to help in the kitchen! Here are a few easy kid-friendly recipes, including one of my own for oatmeal peanut butter cookies. Try Christmas Crinkle Cookies, Chocolate Thumbprints or Christmas Snowballs. Baking items you may need are Holiday Metal Cookie Cutters, Mini Squeeze Bottles, Meringue Powder for royal icing and Christmas Holiday Sprinkles.

If cut-out sugar cookies are your thing, I highly recommend this recipe from SweetSugarBelle that uses powdered (confectioners sugar) instead of granulated. These cookies are melt-in-your-mouth yummy! This is also where you’ll find the perfect recipe and tutorials for making royal icing. You might not be able to decorate quite as fantastically detailed as she does, but here is some inspiration! Seriously, are those too cute to eat or what?!

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Image credit and recipe from Sweet Sugarbelle

Wrapping Paper Games

If you haven’t finished up wrapping gifts, let your kids have at the tape and paper and allow them to wrap gifts for friends and family. When they’re done with the paper, the cardboard tubes can be used for several things. One Christmas, my Dad painted them red and white striped like a candy cane and slipped them around metal stair railings for a cute decoration. Of course, my boys always use the wrapping paper tubes as mock light sabers!

  

Gingerbread House Decorating

A friend of mine has the Candy Cottage Gingerbread House which looks like it’s made of cookie but is really plastic. All you need is your own icing and candy and you can decorate the house without risk of it toppling over! Some great candy suggestions are TWIZZLERS Christmas PULL ‘N’ PEEL Candy, Necco Wafers, Star Brites Peppermint Starlight Mints and Sixlets.

I love the “gingerbread” house made of graham crackers. Did you know that Honey Maid actually makes gingerbread crackers and chocolate grahams? This is a great petite size that kids can tackle on their own and enjoy the snack when they’re done!

gingerbread-house

Image from Our Best Bites.

How will you be spending winter break with the kids? Share with me in the comments!

 

Peppermint Mickey Holiday T-Shirt Disney DIY

Disney DIY Craft for Kids - Peppermint Mickey Holiday T-shirt

Looking for a unique and adorable Mickey holiday T-Shirt to wear to the parks this season? Or just something fun to add a bit of Disney magic to your at-home holidays? I whipped this one up for my son in about 30 minutes and you can too, it’s really easy!

I think this design would be really cute for the entire family to wear at Disney during the holiday season. I made this on Friday night and my son wore it Saturday when we celebrated #DisneylandHolidays! He received so many compliments on it (even from Santa’s elves!)

Disney DIY Craft for Kids - Peppermint Mickey Holiday T-shirt

You’ll only need a few things to create this Peppermint Mickey Holiday T-shirt!

Please note that I use affiliate links in this post. Clicking and purchasing through these links will help me in a small financial way, thank you!

Solid color cotton t-shirt (like American Apparel Childrens/Kids Plain T-Shirt)

White cotton fabric (I always use Kona Cotton White Fabric)

Fabric Adhesive (I only use Thermoweb Heat’n Bond Ultra Hold Iron-On Adhesive)

Red fabric paint & a paintbrush (I use DecoArt SoSoft Fabric Paint and Martha Stewart Crafts Detailing Brushes)

Disney DIY Craft for Kids - Peppermint Mickey Holiday T-shirt

Other things you’ll need:

A print out of a Mickey silhouette. I just did a Google search and found one online.

Iron

Sewing machine with white thread

Disappearing Ink Pen for Fabric

Instructions:

Prewash and dry the t-shirt and white fabric, then iron both smooth.

peppermintcollage1

Lay Heat’n Bond adhesive on the Mickey silhouette (bumpy side down) and trace the shape.

Cut around the Heat’n Bond silhouette, then iron onto the white fabric.

Cut out the silhouette carefully on the line.

Peel off the adhesive backing and center the shape onto the t-shirt. Once you have it in position, iron/press according to the Heat’n Bond instructions.

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On your sewing machine, sew along the scant edge of the silhouette to secure the design to the t-shirt.

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To recreate the peppermint design, I did a Google search for “peppermint candy” and found a simple image. Using your disappearing ink pen, carefully replicate the design on to the large circle of Mickey’s silhouette. Repeat the design inside each of the smaller circles of Mickey’s ears.

peppermintcollage4

Using red fabric paint, paint the peppermint design. Use a thicker brush to fill in the design and a small, thin brush along the edges to create a clean edge.

Keep the shirt flat for at least 12 hours to dry.

DIY Craft for Kids - Peppermint Mickey Holiday T-shirt

Ta-da! A quick and adorable holiday Mickey design that will add a sparkle of Disney magic to your holidays! (Even if your mom poses you for photos on Main Street U.S.A. and all you really want to be doing is going on the Matterhorn Bobsleds…sorry kid!)

Disney DIY Craft for Kids - Peppermint Mickey Holiday T-shirt

“Enough pictures, Mom…let’s go to the Matterhorn!”

Where will YOU wear your Peppermint Mickey DIY Holiday T-shirt?

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Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Yellow Loop. Today we are sharing Disney inspired Halloween costumes. Disney princess costumes don’t have to be elaborate or expensive. You can still dress your little princess in an easy and budget-friendly Disney princess costume that she’ll be able to wear for Halloween, dress-up or to the Parks! Even if you don’t think you can sew a costume, you can make one of these easy Disney princess costumes. Using a store bought t-shirt as a base, you’ll be able to add purchased trim to create a fun Disney-bound type costume.

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

Keep reading for the tutorial on how to make a princess costume from a t-shirt.

This post contains Amazon affiliate links

The Idea Spark

A quick Google search will give you an idea of princess styles and colors. There are certain characteristics in the costumes that each character wears, like Rapunzel’s crisscrossed bodice and the draping on Belle’s dress. And each princess has a certain color scheme, like Jasmine’s turquoise and gold and Elsa’s icy blue and white. The characteristics of the style isn’t as important as the princess color scheme. If you keep with a recognizable color scheme you can design your shirt however you like.

For Rapunzel: Schiff Grosgrain Ribbon in Orchid
For Jasmine: Metallic Gold Lace Trim
For Cinderella: Satin Ribbon Rose Flowers

       
I decided to make my little gal a Snow White DisneyBound outfit. Snow White’s color scheme is dark blue, red, yellow and white. But Snow White’s look is pretty simple and I wanted it a little fancier. Using the color scheme, I designed a top with various ribbons, lace and ribbon roses. It’s not exactly like Snow White, but as long as you keep within the color schemes that make each princess recognizable, you can be creative in the style of each princess top.

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

Start with a T-Shirt

A t-shirt is a quick and easy way to make a costume base. This shirt cost me less than $5 and I already had these trims on hand. You can layer trims, sew appliques or add ribbons and buttons to create the look you want.

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

SEWING TIP – If you sew on non-stretchy trim, this will make the shirt less stretchy as well. Just keep this in mind before sewing trim on that you’ll still need to get this shirt on and off your child. For example, if you sew trim all the way around the neckline, it will no longer be able to stretch over her head. Use non-stretchy trim minimally, especially around areas like the hem, neckline and arm holes.

Lay out your trims onto the outfit until you come up with a design that you are happy with. Don’t cut the trim until you have it pinned down and at the length that you want.

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

SEWING TIP – When pinning on the trims, tuck something firm inside the shirt to separate the front and back so you don’t pin through the entire shirt. A piece of cardboard or flattened cereal box works well.

Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

SEWING TIP – Ribbons are slippery so pin them a LOT when you’re prepping. Once you get the shirt on the sewing machine, you’ll find that the ribbons tend to shift so take your time and move slowly, removing pins as you reach them.

Adding little details like these pre-made ribbon roses adds just the right touch to complete your look!

 Easy DIY Disney Princess Costumes on a Budget

Buy Inexpensive Bottoms

Tights and leggings are cheap and quick ways to complete your costume. I looked for yellow leggings at the store for my princess but they didn’t sell them in itty-bitty sizes. I found a pretty floral print at Old Navy that worked nicely with the colors on the top and still gives this modern Snow White a woodsy feel.

For Sleeping Beauty (aka: Princess Aurora): Little Girl’s Ruffle leggings

Want the sparkle without the messy glitter? Opt for a sequined circle skirt that will give your girl all the twirl and none of the glittery mess!

For Ariel – Sequin Dance Tutu Skirt for Girls

Tutu Tutorial

Tulle fabric is very inexpensive and easy to work with. I love the sparkly tulle that has the sequins and sparkle attached. It also has some stretch to it, so you can sew it directly onto the hem of your t-shirt if you wish. Or make a tutu using one of the many tutorials on Pinterest and your princess will be tutu-cute in no time!

An icy blue for Elsa: Sparkle Tulle Teal Fabric By The Yard and a pretty gold for Belle: Sparkle Tulle Gold Fabric By The Yard

  

For more Disney inspired Halloween costumes,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Yellow | Disney Inspired Halloween Costumes Loop:

Julie-signature

 

 

Beautiful Bedroom for Baby – DIY Nursery Decor on a Budget

A Beautiful DIY Bedroom for Baby - Nursery Decor on a Budget

Having a dedicated space for baby is special. Whether it be a nook in your own bedroom, a shared space with an older sibling or a full nursery, designing the space can be fun…but expensive! If you can sew (or know someone who can), you can really save money and create a space that’s beautiful and unique. I’ve collected a few of my favorite tried and tested tutorials for designing your own nursery decor on a budget.

Basics for a DIY Nursery

Design: Decide on the direction you want to go before starting any projects. Figure out a color palate and style before you buy any fabrics or decide on any patterns.

Fabrics: Find your “inspiration fabric” before you buy anything. This is going to be your main fabric that will highlight your projects and all other colors will pull from this fabric. Art Gallery Winged Wingspan Melon was my inspiration fabric and it had lots of great colors for me to use in the other projects for my nursery.

Patterns: I love the patterns on Sew4Home. They are free and range from beginning to advanced. Make sure to read through the entire pattern before starting in case it’s too complicated for you. A quick search on Pinterest can also give you a wide range of DIY projects!

Quilt

I find that starting with a quilt is a great place to gather your favorite fabric designs and colors. From here, you can run with things and decide which fabrics you want to use for the other projects in the room.

"Rainbow Blankie", made 4 years ago for my son (along with a Boppy pillow cover)

“Rainbow Blankie”, made 4 years ago for my son (along with a Boppy pillow cover)

Charm pack baby quilt from Sew4Home – 4 years ago, I sewed this small quilt for my son. It’s come to be known fondly as “rainbow blankie” and he sleeps with it every night. I knew that I had to recreate this quilt for the new baby. It’s a great project for beginners (I’d never made a quilt before this one) and goes together easily, especially if you use a pre-cut charm pack. I prefer to pick and choose and piece together my own fabrics but it definitely takes me infinitely longer to make the quilt when I’m cutting out and designing this way.

A Beautiful DIY Bedroom for Baby - Nursery Decor on a Budget

“Butterfly Blankie”, sewn for my new daughter

Changing Table Pad Cover

Changing table pad covers are very simple to sew yourself and you can probably sew up three in a day (I did!) I loved using leftover fabrics to piece them together and create a unique look that coordinates in the room. Adding a bit of Minkie Dot fabric adds softness and sophistication. I used this free pattern from View from the Fridge.

Changing table cover in my son's room, along with a coordinating banner above the table.

Changing table cover in my son’s room, along with a coordinating banner above the table.

Diaper Stacker

Space is tight in our shared nursery so I wanted to have a space to store overstock diapers. I sewed up this hanging diaper stacker that coordinates with the other fabrics in the space. I skipped the applique to save time. Follow the Hanging diaper stacker pattern from Sew4Home.

A Beautiful DIY Bedroom for Baby - Nursery Decor on a Budget

Snuggly Blankie

I had enough Minkie Dot fabric to make a snuggly blankie. One side is the soft Minkie and the other side is one of my favorite prints, that I’ve been hoarding for years! It’s framed with silky satin trim and this blankie goes together very fast. Find the free pattern for the Papa Bear Bound Edge Blanket on Sew4Home.

Art Work and Wall Decor

A Beautiful DIY Bedroom for Baby - Nursery Decor on a Budget

Artwork for the nursery side of the room

Since this is a shared room with a tween and a new baby, I wanted it to look feminine but not babyish. I chose fabrics and colors that were all-age appropriate, in a wide color palette. My older girl already had this turquoise and purple comforter so when I picked out fabrics for the baby’s quilt, I made sure to include these colors as well.

I chose artwork for the spaces above their beds that would coordinate and “grow” with them. I bought the frames and art using 50% off coupons for the craft store and printed the artwork at home from TwoBrushesDesigns on Etsy. The Cinderella Castle print was a gift, purchased at Vivid Editions and has a great splash of brightness and color. I chose frames and mirrors in a variety of shapes and sizes, then laid them out on the floor, moving them around until I had a collage that looked good to me before hanging them on the wall.

A Beautiful DIY Bedroom for Baby - Nursery Decor on a Budget

The Tween side of the bedroom

What to buy and what to make?

I find that things that take a lot of fabric (like fitted sheets) or things that take a lot of time to sew (anything with tons of ruffling) are better off being bought than made myself. There are also some items that are barely noticed in a nursery so you might as well save time by purchasing them instead. I ended up buying a simple crib skirt online for less than $15 and it would have taken me much more to purchase the fabric and sew it myself.

A Beautiful DIY Bedroom for Baby - Nursery Decor on a Budget

Do you have any favorite nursery DIY tips? Share them with me in the comments!

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Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

When you’re organized, things just seem to run more smoothly!  Nobody needs to panic when they can’t find something because it’s been established ahead of time that every item has a place. Organizing solutions do not have to be expensive and there is no reason to hire “experts” or purchase pricey dividers or shelving units. It does take time though, arranging items to the best benefit and use of your family. But it will be all worth it when someone asks you, “Where’s my red hat with the white polka dots?” and you’ll know exactly what to tell them so they can find it!

Please note that this post contains affiliate links. Clicking through and making a purchase helps me in a small financial way, thank you!

Organizing Solutions that Work for Your Family

There are 6 of us in our 1000 square foot home. Yep, that’s a tight fit and every inch counts. Since adding our newest little one, we’ve been organizing and streamlining the house now to make room. We’ve always done pretty good with keeping stuff to a minimum but some of our stuff is necessary and it’s all about finding the most practical way to store it in a budget-friendly way!

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

These are my top 12 organizing solutions!

When we moved in four years ago I had things pretty well organized but over time our needs changed and I hadn’t rethought certain areas. I knew that we could do better and get them even more organized and streamlined. I took a good look at each space I needed to reorganize and made notes. In rethinking some of these spaces, I knew that I could move things there into other locations or even get rid of them completely.

Weed it out

Before you even start to organize, you have to decide what you’re going to keep and what needs to go.

Remove the contents of a drawer, bin or closet and go through each and every item.

Toss out, recycle, donate or place in a garage sale pile…whatever you need to do to minimize. Go through medications, lotions, nail polish, and other household items frequently to toss what is expired or give away what isn’t being used. Add this task to your calendar once each season and it won’t be such a laborious project.

I keep a small basket or fabric box (less than $5 each on Amazon) inside my kid’s closet for donation items. As they outgrow their clothes, I place the items in the basket and when the basket is full the contents are given away.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

We make use out of our closet by keeping overstock items and medical needs clearly labeled in bins and drawers.

Get Rid of the “Junk Drawer”

We don’t have one. We don’t need one because in our small home, there is no room for a “junk drawer”…everything has a place!

Dump out your junk drawer and find a home for each and every item there. Batteries? Get a bin for them and store them in a desk. Pens and pencils? Keep them in a cup within easy reach. Mail? Deal with mail as it comes in the door, recycling or filing as necessary.

A mesh desk organizer (Amazon for less than $10) is a great place to keep some of these “junk drawer” items you need close at hand.

Label It

I had a label maker for over ten years and used the heck out of it until it recently died. I just splurged and bought a new Brother P-Touch Label Maker(less than $23 on Amazon) and have been going (slightly) overboard with labeling everything in the house.

However I will note that nobody has been asking me, “Where’s the XYZ” because everything is so neatly labeled for them now! I do recommend investing in a label maker but you could also purchase stickers and label boxes with a Sharpie as well.

Organize drawer contents and sort into “like items”. Add a label on the outside to remind family to put things back where they belong!

Labels on book shelves help young readers organize their picture books, chapter book and coloring books.

Sort important paperwork into 3-Ring binders and then add a label to the side for easy access.

Get it Off the Floor

We’d all love to get those fancy professionally sized closet organizers, right? But boy, are they pricey!! We found a more reasonable solution in metal shelving units. They are intended for the garage I think, but we like to think outside of the box.

Since some of these tall Steel Wire Shelving Unit (under $40 on Amazon) can be customized for shelf height, they are perfect for placing in your closet. We simply keep the units as two shorter racks instead of assembling into one tall rack.

Things sitting on the floor can pile up and add to the clutter. Look at what you have on the floor and figure out where you can put it so it’s off the ground.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

Hang it Up

I have a hook in the hall closet with a pair of scissors so everyone knows exactly where the scissors are (instead of tossed in a random drawer). Backpacks go on hooks in the garage. Tired of seeing the bath towel laying on the floor because your little one can’t hang it properly on a towel rod? Install a hook! We were limited on wall space so my husband hung bath towel hooks for the boys on the end of the bunk bed and that works perfectly because they are completely out of the way.

An Over The Door Hook is invaluable (and under $15 on Amazon) and can make use of space, especially in a bathroom for towels.

No need to put holes in the wall. Command Wire Hooks are removable quickly but stay up well, even with heavier items. I buy the variety pack and find clever uses for them all over the house!

Beautiful Baskets

With drawer space at a minimum I keep my clean kitchen towels at the ready by folding them and keeping them within arms reach of the sink in this neat wire basket. I also have Wire Basket Organizers (less than $15 for two on Amazon) like this on the back of the toilet for hand towels.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

I don’t have room in the kitchen for my cookbooks so I keep them organized in a pretty basket under the foyer cabinet. They are still easily accessed and don’t take up precious counter or cupboard space in the kitchen.

Before you buy baskets new, check out your local thrift store. This is a fantastic place to find inexpensive baskets and you can always spray paint them for an updated look.

Shelving is King

Use all the space you can on shelves by maximizing with wire shelving units. We use these in the kitchen to make use of extra space for plates and bowls. In the pantry for canned foods and boxes this Small Kitchen Helper Shelf really helps maximize space (for about $7 on Amazon).

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

Using wire shelving to make extra space for plates and bowls.

Use individual shelving in the closet to take advantage of tall ceilings. If you can, always go UP and take advantage of the space you have. We have small closets but they have tall ceilings so I bought expandable shelving units. This allows me to safely stack items higher and use up all the space available.

Box it Up

LEGOS. Oh yes, my friend. Let’s get all those tiny bits and pieces boxed up so that you only pull them out of the box intentionally when you’re ready to play. We also have Leapster games and the Leapster unit all in one box together.

Seasonal clothes and blankets don’t need to take up space in the closet. We load up plastic bins or use Ziploc Space Saver bags to store these items in the attic or under the bed.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

With a new baby, I had been given some wonderful hand-me-downs. I wanted to keep track of what I have so I went through the clothes and placed the sizes together into Clear Storage Boxes.

A quick label on the outside of each will let me have the next size up within easy reach. Once she’s used up all the clothes in the bin, I can remove the label and re-purpose the box.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

The expandable metal shelving unit makes it easy to take out just the one thing you need. Clothing has been organized into boxes for the future.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

Like Items Together

We have a lot of books (I used to work at a bookstore!) but I hate how the small paperbacks were mingling with the tall picture books because they never sat nicely on the shelf together. I found these inexpensive plastic Book & Magazine Organizers and they are perfect for holding paperbacks. I use them on the shelf next to the taller books as a sort-of “book end”.

Consider buying bins or boxes to hold other like things, like summer items. All the bathing suits, sunglasses, and beach hats would then be in one, easy-to-find location. Here, we have one soft bin for hats, one for blocks and one for coloring books.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

Contain It

Our bathroom counters are quite small and there’s no room for clutter. We keep only the soap dispenser and toothbrush holder on the counter (which makes it easier to clean as well).

Under the sink, we have a colored container for each child that holds their personal toiletries. Each child’s toothpaste, drinking cup, deodorant, face wash, etc is in their own container. My daughter has a separate bin for her hair brush and accessories.

I have two-tiered Mesh Cabinet Baskets under my bathroom sink that holds things like lotion, make-up and razors. One basket holds hair styling products and another large bin holds tools like the blow dryer and flat iron.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

Throw it in a Bin

Target frequently has plastic bins for $3 in their Dollar Spot section. They are nice for items that can be tossed in, like winter hats or gloves, sunglasses or random toys like cars and action figures. Set them on a shelf or even inside a drawer to section off and keep small items (like socks & underwear) from getting lost.

In the kitchen, we store breads in a decorative Wooden Crate on the counter. If you don’t want to purchase bins or crates, keep your old shoe boxes and decorate them with wrapping paper for neat and tidy closet or drawer storage.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

And open bin within a box keeps things organized and contained.

BEFORE (left) – Clutter of random stuff on the top shelf.

AFTER (right) – Stackable bins hold seasonal items like sun hats and winter wear. In anticipation of sharing this room with the new baby, I had made bins for art supplies and electronic cords to get my daughter in the habit of putting these items up and out of reach.

Organizing9-before  Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

BEFORE (left) – The fabric hanging unit with daily outfits was a good start. I moved the two-drawer unit in to hold pajamas and socks but items like tights, sunglasses, hair accessories and underpants were mixed in and it was hard to find items.

AFTER (right) – Rearranged top shelf with addition of bins for seasonal items. Added a small bin to the daily outfit unit so she can choose which accessory matches without having to dig in another larger bin.

Deep drawers with pajamas now hold smaller bins for tights, sunglasses and other hair accessories so everything is separated. A separate bin on top of the drawers holds underpants.

Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces  Budget-friendly & Practical Organizing Solutions for Small Spaces

Bulky Items Out of the House

Whenever possible try to use a space outside of the house, like your garage, storage shed or attic. We simply don’t have the kitchen cabinet space to hold our large slow cooker or stand mixer, so we store them in a cabinet in the garage.

Yes, you could keep some items on the kitchen counter but this can create a lot of clutter and makes it harder to properly clean the counter tops. Since we also shop at Costco quite a bit we tend to have a lot of bulk items. Bring in only what you need into the house and store the bulk of it elsewhere.


What are your favorite organizing tips? Share below in the comments!

 

Everything Good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe #SplendaHoliday #ad

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SplendaHoliday #CollectiveBias

Everything Good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe #SplendaHoliday #ad

It’s baking season at our house! When visiting friends, attending holiday parties or participating in cookie swaps, I like to bring something that’s full of flavor but with an ingredient twist and I really love taking full fat and sugar recipes and tweaking them. Using SPLENDA® Brown Sugar Blend is a way to cut out some of the sugar but still retain lots of taste in my Everything Good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe. The addition of whole wheat flour, coconut oil, and ground flax seed add a nutty flavor and nobody ever knows that I’ve strayed from the standard recipe, they just want more!

I was able to pick up the SPLENDA® Brown Sugar Blend at my local Walmart, along with a few other necessary ingredients like eggs and vanilla.

Everything Good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe #SplendaHoliday

I’ve been making these cookies for my family for years and have been tweaking the ingredients in different ways to our liking. Out went about half the butter, replaced with coconut oil. I’ve used whole wheat flour in addition to all-purpose flour. I add a bit of ground flax seed for extra fiber. We usually use raisins because that’s what we most often have in the pantry, but have also used dried cranberries with much success. Chopped walnuts add a wonderful texture. Chocolate chips, yes! But with all the other yummy ingredients, you won’t need a lot of chocolate in the dough. Can you see why I call these Everything Good?

Everything Good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe #SplendaHoliday

BAKING TIPS – When subbing SPLENDA® Sugar Blend into your own recipes, keep in mind that you’ll use half the amount of SPLENDA® Sugar Blend as you would sugar. A half cup of SPLENDA® Sugar Blend has the sweetness of one full cup of sugar, so a little goes a longer way.

Everything Good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe #SplendaHoliday #ad

I also found that when using SPLENDA® Sugar Blend in my cookie recipe, there is less spreading. This is easily remedied by flattening the dough slightly with my fingertips before placing into the oven.

Everything Good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe #SplendaHoliday #ad

Everything Good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

Everything Good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 2/3 cup SPLENDA® Brown Sugar Blend
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup ground flax seed powder
  • 3 cups oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup raisins or dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, broken up with fingers

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Beat butter and sugars until creamy.
  3. Add eggs and vanilla, Beat well.
  4. Add flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and ground flax seed. Mix well.
  5. Add oats and combine.
  6. With mixer running, add raisins, chocolate and walnuts and mix just until combined.
  7. Drop by tablespoon onto ungreased cookie sheet. Dough may be crumbly and require shaping and flattening with fingers.
  8. Bake 8-10 minutes. Cool one minute on the pan then transfer to a wire rack for cooling.
  9. Baked goods made with SPLENDA® should be stored in an air-tight container and will retain freshness up to 24 hours. Freeze extra cookies.
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Stop by Walmart and pick up your bag of SPLENDA® Brown Sugar Blend this baking season! It’s a great way to participate in the SWEET SWAPS™ Initiative and remove some of the sugar from your holiday treats. Enter the J&J Holiday Baking with SPLENDA® giveaway and win Walmart gift cards!

J&J Holiday Baking with Splenda®

Everything Good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe #SplendaHoliday #ad


 

Holiday Dessert-to-Go – Apple Oatmeal Cake Recipe and FREE Printable #ShareTheHoliday

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #ShareTheHoliday #CollectiveBias

Holiday Dessert-to-Go - Apple Oatmeal Cake Recipe and FREE Printable #ShareTheHoliday

The holidays are upon us and that means, family, food and more food! I’m always up for dessert, but sometimes after a big meal, my guests aren’t always ready to indulge. But that doesn’t mean they want to miss out completely! Thanks to Rubbermaid TakeAlongs, guests can box up dessert to go so they can have a treat for later.

Holiday Dessert-to-Go - Apple Oatmeal Cake Recipe and FREE Printable #ShareTheHoliday

I baked a pan of Apple Oatmeal Cake especially for my guests to take home with them. I love this Apple Oatmeal Cake recipe because it’s just as delicious for dessert as it is for breakfast with a cup of coffee or tea. So if your guests just can’t find any room after their big holiday meal, they can save their cake to eat in the morning. It’s fantastic when warmed slightly and served with a dollop of whipped cream, mmmm!

Holiday Dessert-to-Go - Apple Oatmeal Cake Recipe and FREE Printable #ShareTheHoliday

After letting the cake cool, I cut it into pieces and boxed the slices up into the Rubbermaid TakeAlongs. Having my family around me during the holidays is a gift and I want to thank them for joining us. Sharing a meal together and giving a special treat to take home with them truly highlights what the season is all about.

Holiday Dessert-to-Go - Apple Oatmeal Cake Recipe and FREE Printable #ShareTheHoliday

Since I know you’re busy, I created this Thank You Printable for you to use on your Rubbermaid TakeAlongs. Simply print and cut out. I delegated this task to my kids, who used simple craft sticky dots to secure the thank you cards to the top of the Rubbermaid TakeAlongs before we boxed up the treats.

Holiday Dessert-to-Go - Apple Oatmeal Cake Recipe and FREE Printable #ShareTheHoliday

We already have quite a collection of Rubbermaid containers for everyday use, but I don’t necessarily want to send these home with my guests (because I’ll never get them back!) Rubbermaid TakeAlongs products are available at Walmart at a reasonable price so you can pack up leftovers for your guests and send them home with them. On our stop at Walmart, we chose Rubbermade TakeAlongs in Deep Square and Rectangle but there are also TakeAlongs Serving Bowl, TakeAlongs Serving Rectangle, and the TakeAlongs Deviled Egg Tray.

Holiday Dessert-to-Go - Apple Oatmeal Cake Recipe and FREE Printable #ShareTheHoliday

Find Rubbermaid TakeAlongs for the holidays at Walmart

The holiday Rubbermaid TakeAlongs come in a variety of holiday colors and prints. We brought home festive red and green. I bought a few extra in case anyone wants leftover turkey or stuffing (as if they wouldn’t!) Rubbermaid TakeAlongs feature Quik Clik Seal™ technology which helps prevent spills in the car on the way home. They are also microwave, freezer, and dishwasher safe, so you can pop your Apple Oatmeal Cake into the microwave to warm it up before swooping the top with whipped cream.

Holiday Dessert-to-Go - Apple Oatmeal Cake Recipe and FREE Printable #ShareTheHoliday

This recipe goes together quickly and the addition of applesauce, coconut oil, ground flax seed and oatmeal make this a healthier dessert option. And as I said, fantastic for breakfast (in fact, that’s what we had for breakfast today!)

Healthier Apple Oatmeal Cake

Healthier Apple Oatmeal Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1.5 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup sugar (or use sugar substitute)
  • 2 cups oatmeal
  • 1/4 cup ground flax seed (optional)
  • 1/2 cup oil (I used 1/4 cup melted coconut oil and 1/4 cup vegetable oil)
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 apples, peeled and chopped
  • 2/3 cup walnuts, chopped

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix dry ingredients in bowl.
  3. Add liquid ingredients and mix just until moistened.
  4. Stir in apples and walnuts. Mixture will be quite thick.
  5. Pour into a greased 9 x 13" pan.
  6. Bake 30-35 minutes.
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Holiday Dessert-to-Go - Apple Oatmeal Cake Recipe and FREE Printable #ShareTheHoliday

Make sure to stock up on Rubbermaid TakeAlongs from Walmart so you’re prepared to pack up leftovers and share them with your guests! Click through to find out how you can get $1 Off Of Any 2 Rubbermaid TakeAlongs Products in this rebate offer, exclusive to Walmart shoppers (starts Nov 25th). It’s an excellent way to Share the Holiday.

Holiday Dessert-to-Go - Apple Oatmeal Cake Recipe and FREE Printable #ShareTheHoliday

How will you #ShareTheHoliday with your family this year?


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Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #MejoresRecetas #CollectiveBias

Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

I’m not alone in thinking that a hot bowl of soup truly warms you up on a chilly day. But does it always fill you up? Depends upon the ingredients, because sometimes my tummy is grumbling for more food a short while after having soup for dinner. The key is to making a hearty and filling soup that truly satisfies, and still gives you that warm feeling! It’s also nice to have a soup recipe on a budget that can be easily doubled for a second meal.

Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

Recipe on a Budget

For me, soup needs to be budget-friendly and it needs to be easy. I made Chipotle Black Bean Soup for my husband and big kids a few weeks ago and they all loved it. Perfect for a chilly fall day, this soup is filling and full of flavor and fiber. With black beans, diced tomatoes, corn, green chiles and La Morena Chipotle Peppers this soup will warm you from the inside out. La Morena gives my dishes an authentic Latino flavor (and spice!) that we love.

Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

I like that I can serve this soup with a variety of toppings so my family can mix in exactly what they want. And my husband and I? We top it with EVERYTHING! A dollop of Greek yogurt, shredded cheese and sliced avocado. Add in a big bowl of tortilla chips and an icy Coca-Cola…I’m in heaven.

Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

*ahem* I already took a sip of this Coke…I couldn’t help it!

Take a Little Time to Save Money

I like to cook on a budget so instead of canned black beans, I prep dry beans for cooking in this soup. You could certainly go the canned black bean route but to save a little money, it’s not hard to take a little time when you’re home to soak and boil a bag of dry beans to have ready when you need it. A one pound bag of dry beans costs $1.70 and makes at least six cups. Versus one can of black beans at $1.30 each that only makes about two cups. If you have the time, truly, try making the beans from scratch. I soaked mine overnight and then boiled them up for 90 minutes today so they’d be ready for the soup at dinnertime.

Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

In Store Special

The rest of the soup goes together quickly, especially with the use of canned diced tomatoes, canned corn, green chiles and La Morena Chipotle Peppers. I picked up the La Morena product and cute Coca-Cola glass bottles at Northgate Market. They are currently offering a special when you combine La Morena products with Coca-Cola: Buy (1) 7.5oz Mini Can or 6 pack PET bottles of any Coca-Cola brand + La Morena product and receive $0.50 off. Consider doubling this soup recipe and freezing half so you’ll have a ready-to-serve meal during the busy holiday season!

Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

Feelin’ hot, hot, hot? You won’t even need this entire pepper to make your soup spicy.

Now, a warning. Chipotle peppers in adobo are HOT. You will not be using the entire can in this soup. I used only 1/3 of the can and probably shouldn’t have even used that much because my soup was still quite spicy. I’d recommend starting with 3/4 of one pepper because you can always add more later if you want more kick. I used 1 1/2 peppers and it was probably too spicy. Fortunately we topped our soup with Greek yogurt which cooled it down.

Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

Bag up and freeze the rest of the can to use later.

So here’s what I did with the rest of the peppers in the can. I labeled plastic baggies and put them in the freezer so I can use them in another recipe in the future. You could also cut them up and divide into ice cube trays so you have a small shot of spice to use later.

Dinner in 20 minutes

Once you have the dry beans prepped and ready, this soup only takes about 20 minutes to toss together and cook. Great on those days when you’re short on time and need something hot and filling on the table fast!

Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

The combinations of flavors is complex and satisfying, and oh-so warming on a chilly day. If you enjoy this recipe, make sure to search #MejoresRecetas for recipes from La Morena and Coca-Cola. For additional savings, also look for the specially marked displays in your stores.

Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe on a Budget

Chipotle Black Bean Soup

Chipotle Black Bean Soup

Ingredients

  • I lb bag of dry black beans, prepared (instructions follow) OR 2 cans black beans, rinsed & drained - You will need a total of 4 cups black beans
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • Can of Chipotle peppers in adobo, to taste (I recommend between 3/4 of one pepper to 1.5 peppers)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1.5 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1.5 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 can chicken broth (2 cups)
  • 1 can of corn, well drained
  • 1 can of fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 4-oz can green chilies

Instructions

  1. Preparing the Dry Black Beans - Pick through the beans (don't skip that step, I found a pebble once!) Rinse beans thoroughly.
  2. For an overnight soak, add beans to a pot with 8 cups of cold water and let them sit overnight or at least 8 hours. Drain and rinse beans. For a quick soak, add beans to a pot with 8 cups of cold water and bring to a boil for two minutes. Remove from heat and cover pot with lid. Let stand one hour, then drain and rinse beans.
  3. To cook the Beans - add 8 cups hot water to prepped & soaked beans. Simmer gently with lid tilted until desired tenderness is achieved, between 1.5 - 2 hours.
  4. To Make Soup - In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat.
  5. Add onions, chipotle pepper, salt and pepper. Stir to combine and use spoon to break up pepper into small bits. Cook until slightly softened, about five minutes.
  6. Add garlic, paprika, cumin and chili powder, then stir to combine. Cook another five minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Add four cups of cooked and drained beans, chicken broth, diced tomatoes, corn and chilies. Stir to combine and then cover.
  8. Cook over medium heat for 15-20 minutes.
  9. Serve with toppings, like Greek yogurt or sour cream, cilantro, avocado slices, shredded cheese and tortilla chips.
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Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Yellow Loop. Today we are sharing Halloween craft ideas.


Do you love having custom boutique clothing for you and your kids when you visit the Disney Parks? Me too! I’ve been creating and selling appliqued tees for years in my Etsy shop, The Painted Butterfly Studio. However, I know not everyone has the time or inclination to perfect satin stitching or proper technique for seamless applique. I came up with a technique for applique that anyone with a sewing machine can accomplish!

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Supplies needed:

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

1. Take your coloring page or design and flip the page over. Outline the bold details with a Sharpie marker. This is the side that you will trace on.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

2. Place a piece of fusible bond (bumpy side down) onto your design and trace out each individual shape using a Sharpie marker (ball point pens or pencils will smudge or smear off onto your iron, so a Sharpie is best).

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

You’ll have a piece for the pumpkin, the stem, the leaf and the individual pieces of the jack-o’ lantern face.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

3. Cut around each piece of fusible bond but NOT on the Sharpie line (see image above on left). Iron them (bumpy side down) onto the appropriate color of fabric.

  • One orange pumpkin shape
  • One lime green leaf
  • One brown stem
  • One black jack-o’ lantern smile, one nose and two eyes.

4. Cut out each piece on the Sharpie line.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

5. Lay your shirt down and iron out any wrinkles in the design area. Starting with the orange pumpkin and brown pumpkin stem,  peel off the fusible bond backings and place down onto the tee. Tuck the brown stem slightly underneath the orange pumpkin. Make sure the design is centered and straight. Do not iron yet!!

Lay your coloring page down (the original side, not the one that you traced) on top of your design to make sure the pieces line up before pressing with the iron. I flip the page back and forth quickly so I can compare the design and make sure I have pieces in the correct position. Use a smooth pressure to apply the pieces to your tee shirt with the iron on a “cotton” setting.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

6. Moving on to the leaf, use the same technique, comparing the coloring page to the fabric design before ironing in place.

7. Repeat with jack-o’ lantern pieces, matching the correct position by comparing to the coloring page before ironing in place.

8. Once you have all your pieces securely ironed on, cut a piece of stabilizer slightly larger than the size of your design.

Carefully turn your shirt inside out and follow the package instructions to secure to the inside of the shirt (some stabilizers must be pinned on; I use one that can be ironed on and easily removed).

Turn the shirt right side out. Do not skip this step of using stabilizer! Stabilizer holds the design straight while you sew to avoid warping, puckering or rippling.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

9. Thread your sewing machine bobbin with the same color of thread as your t-shirt. You will start by sewing the pieces on top, the black jack-o’lantern face. When appliqueing, always sew the smaller pieces on top first to avoid puckering. Thread the machine with black thread and set the machine for a tight straight stitch.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

10. Carefully sew each jack-o’ lantern piece close to the outside edge. Change thread colors and complete by sewing the green leaf and brown stem.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

11. Taking your disappearing ink pen and comparing to your original coloring page, draw any detail lines for the pumpkin directly onto your fabric design.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

12. Using orange thread, sew around the outside of the pumpkin first, then sew up and down the design to add the details. Make sure to back stitch before and at the end of each strand to secure stitches.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

13. When all sewing is complete, spritz the design lightly with water to remove the disappearing ink lines. You may have to repeat this process several times. Do not iron until the ink lines are gone to avoid setting them permanently.

14. Turn shirt inside out and remove all pieces of stabilizer. Turn shirt right side out.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

14. When disappearing ink lines are gone, press the design with iron to sink and tighten the stitches. Your shirt is ready to wear!


Straight stitch applique advice:

It is important to stick with cotton or knit fabrics only when straight stitch appliqueing. Because the edges of the applique pieces are not covered, there is a chance that the edges of your cotton fabric may fray or curl slightly after a wash and dry. As long as you’ve properly stitched the pieces securely, slight fraying or curling should be fine and create a fun look to your design.

Halloween DIY Disney Mickey Pumpkin Appliqued Tee

Pumpkin shirt with satin stitch applique

Taking applique to the next level:

Once your practiced straight stitch applique, try using a satin stitch (aka: a very close together zig-zag) around the edges of your applique pieces to secure them. This will create a more smooth and polished look. You’ll be able to add more detail and the look will last a long time. Cover the stitches inside (because they will be thicker and potentially more itchy to the wearer) with a soft fusible Poly-mesh backing.

Prefer to buy? I’ve got you covered because this design (with name personalization) and others are sold in my Etsy shop 🙂

For more Halloween craft ideas,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Yellow  | Halloween Crafts Loop:


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Save Money by Changing Your Car’s Oil At Home with Pennzoil #DIYOilChange #ad

I’m a member of the Collective Bias Social Fabric Community. This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #DIYOilChange #CollectiveBias

Save Money by Changing Your Car's Oil At Home with Pennzoil #ad

My husband has been changing the oil in our vehicles for years. It doesn’t take him very long (just around 20 minutes) and we save money by doing it ourselves at home instead of taking the car to the shop. Why not save money (and time) doing something at home instead of paying for the service? Keep reading for my free printable on how to change your car’s oil at home.

A standard oil and filter change for my Nissan Sentra costs around $25 at the shop. A premium change for my husband’s Toyota Tacoma would be around $40. My husband needed to change the oil in his Tacoma so I bought the oil and filter to fit his vehicle.

I picked up Pennzoil Platinum full synthetic motor oil and a new oil filter for $33 total at Walmart. I wasn’t sure what weight and grade of oil to buy for my husband’s truck but the employees in the service department at Walmart were extremely knowledgeable and helpful towards guiding me to the correct product. Read your owner’s manual beforehand to know how much oil your vehicle will need. You could also call your local dealership and ask what is the recommended oil weight and grade for your type of vehicle.

Save Money by Changing Your Own Oil At Home with Pennzoil

Pennzoil Platinum full synthetic motor oil is a high-quality oil that has been specially designed to give your engine complete protection. As an electrician, my husband drives a lot for work and night school. He’s up bright and early and doesn’t return until dark most weeknights. I appreciate that he has a well-running vehicle to get him safely around throughout the day. Pennzoil Platinum Full Synthetic motor oil also offers better fuel economy, always helpful when driving a large truck full of work tools.

Save Money by Changing Your Car's Oil At Home with Pennzoil #ad

Not only does changing our vehicle’s oil at home save money, but it always saves time. True, it still takes my husband about 20 minutes to change the oil in each vehicle but he doesn’t have to leave the house to wait for an hour or more at the auto shop while someone else does the job. This is a savings of about $7.00 per oil change for his truck. He changes the oil and filter about every 5000 miles. By changing the oil at home in both vehicles, over a year this means a savings for us of nearly $60.

Save Money by Changing Your Own Oil At Home with Pennzoil

Want to change your own oil at home but don’t know where to start? Here’s my helpful free printable with step-by-step instructions and tips on a safe and budget-friendly oil change at home with Pennzoil.

FREE PRINTABLE DIY Oil Change at Home

Please use standard safety procedures when changing your oil. You should always refer to your own car’s manual before changing your oil.


When budgeting or saving, every extra dollar counts! Have you considered how much you could save by changing the oil in your own car at home? 

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