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A ferris wheel at Disneyworld.

Thrifty RegretsNow that my children are at the stage where they were moving away to pursue their own adult lives, I find myself having moments where I am absolutely consumed with regret. We never went to Disney World.


A woman reading books in the summer.

Starting a Summer Book Club and Book SwapKeep your kids entertained and reading over the summer by organizing a book club and book swap. Consider one for yourself as well. This is a page about starting a summer book club and book swap.


Young teen boy washing the car.

10 Ways for Kids to Earn MoneyThere are a variety of jobs that children can do to make money. The options depend on their age and experience. This is a page about 10 ways for kids to earn money.


Mother and daughter blowing bubbles.

Frugal Fun With BubblesThis is a page about frugal fun with bubbles. Simple soap bubbles are inexpensive and can amuse all ages of children.


Set Household Routines for School Success

Set Household Routines for School SuccessOver the years, I have learned a couple of tricks to keep my kids healthy, well-fed and rested so they can put their full attention toward learning. My boys are teenagers now but need structure more than ever. Here is what I do.


Frugal Parenting

Frugal ParentingNot all parents can afford but parents always look for ways to provide for their children. Being a newbie in parenthood, I have less knowledge about how to handle a child especially that I am a young mom. All I know is that I want him to learn things that he has to learn at his age. But the problem is that it's not easy. When we talk about providing him with learning materials, it will involve a certain amount of money. Being the sole income earner in the family with less financial resources, I have to find ways to provide him something that could help him gain knowledge as it is normally a part of a child's development as he grows.


Toddler Tweezer Pick Up Game

Toddler Tweezer Pick Up GameI found my toddler on the floor playing with a chip clip the other day. He was using it like a pair of tweezers, picking up small toys, and putting them into his trash truck. This is a simple activity that is great for their fine motor skills.


Felt Scraps for Toddler Play

Felt Scraps for Toddler PlayI make a lot of felt crafts and the other day my son found my pile of scraps. He wanted them so I gave him a few, and after awhile he returned for the whole pile. He uses them with his little bulldozer and other heavy equipment vehicles. As he plays with them we can work on learning his colors.


Toddler Restaurant Kit

Making a Toddler Restaurant KitThis is a page about making a toddler restaurant kit. This easy to assemble kit will not only keep your toddler occupied, but it also contains snacks in case the menu is not to her liking.


Toddler Water Play

Toddler Water PlayWith our recent hot weather, I was looking for ways to entertain my son and keep him cool at the same time. I filled a large pot with some water and gave him a spoon and some small plastic bowls. He started out splashing the water with his hands...


Remembering Your Baby in the Car

Remembering Your Baby in the CarI realize that many people reading this will think "How can someone actually forget their baby in the car?" or assume that everyone that has this happens to is a negligent or downright bad parent. Just to be clear this post isn't intended to address those types of parents.


smiling child playing with the dough

Cloud DoughThis fun sand-like medium is a fun sensory activity for toddlers. Cloud dough is super simple to throw together. All you need is flour and oil. I chose to go with vegetable oil because I knew my son was likely to taste the dough. In the picture below, you will see my assumption was spot on.


playing with shadows 1

Baby Shadow PlayOn a recent sunny day I caught my son enjoying a simple game; trying to catch the shadow that his hand was making on the ground. :) It was adorable and a fun way to interact with him.


Young teen boy washing the car.

10 Ways for Kids to Earn MoneyIt is a very valuable lesson for kids to work for what they want. Here are 10 great ways for kids to earn money.


Take Monthly Photos of Baby

Take Monthly Photos of BabyThere are a lot of cute ways to document how fast your little one grows in the first year. For our son, we took a picture each month on our sofa, joined by a stuffed gorilla (for scale) and a printed piece of paper with his age.



Boy sitting on couch.

Use a Handkerchief as a BibI use handkerchiefs as a bib for my baby. I have bought lots of them in different colors and like to coordinate them with his outfit.


A girl babysitting two children.

Babysitting Activity IdeasThis is a page about babysitting activity ideas. Having planned activities for the children when you babysit can help make it a positive experience for everyone.


First Day of School Photos

First Day of School PhotosEvery year, since our kids were in Kindergarten, I have taken a photo of them in their cubbies. Looking back at them, they are so small those first few years.


Farmers Market

High Tech Kids in a Low Tech PlaceDuring a trip to the Saturday Market in Salem OR, I helped a little boy learn that not everything is high tech.


A family that just discovered their geocache

Try Geocaching This SummerAs soon as I hear, "Hey, Gigi, let's go geocaching," from one of my grandkids, I'm ready to go.


Dad Helping His Daughter get Ready for School

Being Organized for School MorningsThe first thing you need to do is eliminate the mad scramble of the morning rush. You need to be organized and be prepared ahead of time. I will give you some great tips to avoid the morning chaos.


Picky Eater Boy

Parenting a Picky EaterMany children can be very picky eaters, causing concern and frustration for their parents. This is a page about parenting a picky eater.


Frugal Family With Girl Holding Piggy Bank

Frugal Parenting Tips and TricksThis page contains frugal parenting tips and tricks. Raising a family can be a very costly endeavor; with careful planning and creative thinking you can employ some frugal approaches to parenting.


Bread in pans after being baked.

Bake Bread With Your GrandchildrenAs a grandparent, I want to teach my grandchildren the simple techniques of cooking. My husband has been on 2 mission trips with our church to Iceland. I have baked sour dough bread and sold it to defray the costs of the trip each year.


Photo of a woman's waving.

Stop Motion PregnancyAmazing stop motion video of this woman's pregnancy. This is very cool indeed.


A child's feet sitting on a toilet during potty training.

Potty Training Your ChildMost parents eagerly look forward to the days when their child is potty trained. However, children don't always learn as quickly as parents would like, causing stress and discouragement. This is a page to potty training your child.



Attend Free Summer Community EventsThis weekend, we attended Celebrate Hillsboro, an annual summer event provided by the businesses and city of Hillsboro, Oregon.


Fishing in a mountain lake.

Summer Crafts and Activities for Kids (and...If I do not make plans to keep my son busy this summer, he will be perfectly content to waste his days watching TV and playing with his DS. So I plan to set up a daily schedule for him.


Set A Routine for Your Toddler

Set A Routine for Your ToddlerThere is nothing more calming to a child then having a more or less constant routine. Here is what I used to have as a day's worth of learning and fun when my little ones were too young for school.


A check register can be used to teach children about money.

Teaching Your Children About MoneyOne day while I played dress-up, I had decided that I needed to go to the "store", so wearing one of Mom's white tee shirts, a scarf, and my mom's tennis shoes, I grabbed her purse and proceeded to put my play food in a little basket.



Money as a gift

Fiscally Responsible ParentingWhen your children receive cash gifts for the holidays or their birthdays, it's a parent's job to be fiscally responsible with it. You want your children to enjoy it, but you want them to learn how to manage their money at the same time.


printer cartridges

Free FundraisersAs schools suffer through budget cuts, fundraisers become even more important. Yet everyone is cutting back, and purchasing wrapping paper, candy, or raffle tickets isn't in the budget.


Outdoor Play Equipment

Keeping Outdoor Play Equipment Clean and...If you have children, one of the most essential (and often overlooked) spring yard chores is probably sitting right in your own back yard: cleaning and inspecting your children's outdoor play equipment.


Uncle Wiggles Waiting Room KitI know from raising five kids that some of the hardest times for me were when we were in waiting rooms. One daughter tried to tear the leaves off the waiting room plants while her sister tried to eat them.


Girls Dresses out of Women's shirts

Use Ladies Shirts as Girls DressesThis is a photo of my 2 granddaughters wearing their new "dresses". They both wear size 4 clothes. Their dresses are actually ladies shirts, size small, that I got brand new off the clearance rack in WalMart for $1 each!


A stamp collection.

Collectibles For KidsKids love to start collections, but these collections can get too pricey. The latest collecting fad for kids hardly has the intention of keeping a parent's wallet full. However, there are many things that children can collect that aren't pricey but are fun.


Frugal, Fun Kids GroupsOnce upon a time a parent could walk a child to a sports field and sign him up for a season of baseball without costing a penny. Like the days of $0.50 hot dogs at ballparks, it's no more. Youth sports programs today can cost parents $100 per child.


Summer Fun Box

Summer Fun BoxSchool is almost out! A great surprise gift idea for elementary-aged children, grandchildren, or nieces and nephews is a 'Summer of Fun' surprise package. Try to think of all the things you loved as a child.


Children's Fancy Dinner Party

Children's Fancy Dinner PartyEvery summer when my children were home and wondering what to do, they would plan a family "restaurant dinner" night. They had to come up with the menu, cook the food, set up a fancy table, and even make menus.


My Frugal Life: Preschool At HomePreschoolers at home need education and variety- as do their daytime caregiver! In my case, embracing being a stay-at-home-mom has led me to explore, adapt, and use the many free ways to teach my children some basics to prep them for school, life and to have fun with them!


A child blowing bubbles

Summertime Activities for Your ChildrenFrugal living is nothing new to us as I was raised in a family of 11 kids and many foster children. We may have struggled because money was tight, but we never seemed to lack for fun things to do and there was always something going on that held our attention.


Tips For Choosing Eco-Friendly ToysYoung children have a natural tendency to explore new objects with all of their senses-especially their hands and mouths. That's why it's so important to make sure the toys we give them are green and healthy! Here are some tips for choosing eco-friendly toys.


school bus in the country

Buy Teachers' Gifts NowIt might be fall, but now is the time to purchase your child's teacher gifts. Teachers always appreciate tokens of student appreciation, especially those that are hand-picked by their students.


Summer Education Tips

Summer Education TipsThese are my tips for continuing your child's education throughout the summer. Play Math BINGO, I made mine from the plain (inside) cardboard on cereal boxes. I made squares and put numbers in each square.


Pregnant woman

Baby BoomingWhen the time is right and your hearts are ready, a baby is a blessing. That doesn't mean that it's the wrong choice to plan ahead financially for that day of arrival. If a baby is in your future thoughts, save some money now.



baby with ball

Green Baby Facts: Raising a Healthy Baby and Planet...When I was a mother to be, there was not a whole lot of choices out there for anything that was green. We had glass bottles and cloth diapers which are two big green choices but most mothers readily jumped on the Pampers bandwagon because they were easy and convenient.


Kid riding in a car.

Kids Car GamesHitting the road with the kids means hours in the car listening to them complain about being bored. Well, never fear the old games we used to play are still around and to top it off you can create some new car fun. Who needs the car video player or hand held games?


Photo of a kid making cookies.

How To Teach Your Children To CookI am helping my young granddaughter-in-law learn how to cook. I know she will come over one of her days off and I think ahead to what she might enjoy eating that would be good for her.


baby sleeping by grass

Plan a Green NurseryAhh, you are expecting a new baby. Such a joy! Well by now you are well on your way to planning your nursery. Here are some ideas for keeping your nursery green, safe and healthy.


Pita sandwich with lettuce and tomato in it.

School Lunches With PizzazzThe prices of school lunches, like most other things, are rising. Yet, parents need to question whether these lunches are providing their children with healthy lunch options and whether or not the lunches are worth the money.


kids with a babysitter

Saving Money on BabysittingTips and advice for Saving Money on Babysitting as suggested by the ThriftyFun community.


Oatmeal with bananas for hungry teens

Saving Money While Feeding Active TeensMy teenage son swims at least 25 hours a week, and usually rides his bicycle the 5+ miles each way back and forth to practice. At 6 foot tall and 200 lbs, you can imagine how much our athlete can eat!


making a snow ball

Fun Snow Toys and GamesWell we had our first snowfalls the last couple of days here in the Rockies and, though enough did not fall to make a snowman, my grandkids wanted to go and play our in the snow.


Child's Learning

Enhance a Child's Learning Without a TutorTutors can cost $20 or more per hour, but often with younger students it's the mindset of learning that can add to their educational success. At home, try to piggy-back on what information is delivered in school.


Photo of homemade baby food.

Saving Money on Baby FoodTips for Saving Money on Baby Food as suggested by the ThriftyFun community. Post your own ideas here.


A grandma teach two younger children.

Calling All Grandmas! Be a Kindergarten VolunteerMaybe you don't get to see your grandchildren very often or it is just a long distance phone call once or twice a week. Now imagine your self sitting with a child that is struggling with their ABC's and you are helping them.


Saving Money on School Sports SuppliesDo you have any ideas for saving money on school sports supplies? Here are some tips from the ThriftyFun community. Many people with growing kids have a garage full of outgrown or little used sports equipment.


Photo of two bananas and a brown paper bags.

Saving Money on Packed LunchesPacked lunches can add up to nearly as much as takeout or school lunches if you are not careful. Luckily, there are many ways to reduce the cost and make the most of your pantry and fridge while you are at it. If you have advice, please post it here.


Saving Money On School Clothes

Saving Money On School ClothesSchool will be starting soon. What are your favorite tips for saving money on school clothes, shoes or uniforms? Post them here!


Child With Laptop, Money and Cell Phone

Teaching Children the Value of a DollarIn a time when materialism is at a high, the task of teaching children the value of a dollar becomes difficult. Someone recently told me, "What you teach your children in the first ten years of their lives is what molds them into the people they become."


Do U Promise a College Education to Your Children?Whenever I hear the words 'college fund' I nervously change the subject. It's one of those things that I've put off until my mortgage is paid off. By that time my son will be ten ...


Using a Swinging Cradle as a Toy BoxI made this swinging cradle for one of my granddaughters. Now it doubles as her toy box.


Young Girl Holding Piggy Bank

Teaching Kids About FinancesWe have tried to prepare our daughters for the real world in terms of finances and here are some of the strategies we have employed.


Saving Money on Baby Clothes

Saving Money on Baby ClothesDon't be afraid of hand-me downs. If someone offers you hand-me downs, take them! Go through them and whatever you don't want or can't use, give away to someone who can. Tips for saving money on baby clothing as posted from the ThriftyFun community.


Healthy Toys WebsiteHere is a great reference for all of you who are concerned about toy safety this holiday season.


Daddies Teaching Daughters: Automotive KnowledgeAre you wishing that there was a gift that you could give your daughter that would last longer than an ipod or the newest and best cell phone? Well there is, Dad! There is a lot a Dad can teach his daughter that will serve her well in her life.


kids wearing new clothes

Save Money on Kids ClothingKeep kids in nice clothing can be a major expense for parents because kids are always growing. Here are some tips from the ThriftyFun community to help you save on clothing for your kids.


Photo of a child getting ready for school.

Getting Kids Ready For Back To SchoolHere are some tips for getting kids ready for back to school. Start putting the kids to bed earlier every night so that by the time school starts they are used to a school time bedtime.


Two kids smiling out a school bus window.

Recycling Last Year's School SuppliesIt's time to go back to school which means it's an expensive time for parents. Besides buying new clothes and school supplies, time is spent cleaning out last years' things to make way for the new. Try to use some of the old to make the new and save some money.


How Can Kids and Young Adults Make Money?

How Can Kids and Young Adults Make Money?We have been getting a lot of requests from young folks looking for ways to make money before school starts. Here are some Brainstormed ideas for them by the ThriftyFun community. What are your tips for what kids can do to make money? Post them below.


Baby with bottle

Essentials for BabyWith so many new mothers facing hard times these days and with all the new gadgets and gear out there, I thought I would give a basic list as to what is really needed for your new baby and what is just plain fluff that you probably won't use.


Lights, Camera, Action! - A Children's StageDo you have a child that is longing for the bright lights of Hollywood? Do you have a budding playwright in the family too? Well, here is a way to build her or him their own stage so you can enjoy the fruits of their labors.


Photo of a kid finger painting.

Saving Money on Child CareDuring the summer months, child care costs can skyrocket for families with kids getting out of school. What are your tips for saving money on child care?


child reading

Summer Book Club and Book SwapAre you getting ready to have your first yard sale of the summer yet? Have your kids gone through all of their books to add to your sale? If you have got a lot of kids that hang out at your house, why not start a Summer Book Club and book swap.


Mommy Can I Have It?

Mommy Can I Have It?Children are great at breaking a budget, but it's important to set boundaries. What do you do when your child asks for something that is financially out of the question?


Preschool Activities

Saving Money on Preschool ActivitiesDaycare is an enormous expense, but preschool isn't any cheaper. We were lucky enough to have family members watch our son in his early years, but we soon learned that the transition from a family home to kindergarten would be a tough one.


Mamaw's Tried and True Baby Products ReviewsHaving two grandchildren, ages 2 and 6 months, has certainly taught me a lot about the newest products for babies. There are so much more to choose from than there were in my child raising days.


A girl eating a cookie.

No-Cost and Low-Cost Family ActivitiesNo matter how we save money, every family needs fun things to do. Here are some suggestions on no cost/low cost things to do. In these times of rising fuel costs, you need to think about saving on your gasoline costs also.


Easter CD BasketsIt's that time again when we need to be creative about what goes into that Easter Basket so that we don't put our kids on chocolate overload. Personally, I like to put inexpensive toys like crayons and books in their baskets, but recently I was asked by my grandson William if I could get him some coloring pages to color when he had to spend some extended time here.


Stack of diapers.

Saving Money on DiapersTips and strategies for saving money on diapers. I buy diapers when they go on sale. This week I bought a pack of Pampers.


Jumpstarting Your Family's Creativity

Jumpstarting Your Family's CreativityAs parents, we are always looking for fun ways to spend time with each other. Here are some great ideas that don't cost a lot of money, but are big on the fun factor and just might teach your children something. You may not believe that you are creative, but you might be surprised at how creative you can be.


"Mom I Need A Job!": How Kids And Teens Can Earn Some CashHere is a list of things that you can do to earn some cash for that something special you always wanted. There are many things you can do that are better than setting up a lemonade stand in your front yard.


Back To School Breakfast Schedule

Back To School Breakfast ScheduleWe use to struggle with what to have for breakfast. My children have come up with a breakfast schedule and they posted it on the fridge. They listed days of the week and the breakfast meal that will be served that morning.


Almost Free Boredom Busters

Almost Free Boredom BustersIn June the kids aren't bored yet; the thrill of summer vacation is still upon them. However, August is another story. With movie prices at $6 or higher and gas soaring in its price per gallon, how can you keep the kids busy and your budget happy?


Logo for ThriftyFun Tips

The All-Important Summer VacationAs summer approaches prime time vacation season heralds its arrival as well. Enjoy the trip without the aching wallet with some planning.


Two pair of roller skates on table at a garage sale.

Neighborhood Kids Yard SaleIf you have kids, they probably have toys. A lot of toys. Heaps and piles of toys they've forgotten they had, or lost interest in, or just don't use anymore because they grew out of them.


Summer Adventure: Farmers MarketsA farmers market is a fun and different way to shop! Bring the whole family for a morning of fun.


Taliesin in the BathAlways watch your child in the bath, never leave him or her alone!


Karleigh and Her AuntThis is a photo of my sweet new Granddaughter, Karleigh Brooke and her Aunt Heather. My camera goes with me everytime I babysit. Wouldn't take a million dollars for these precious moments I'll always be able to remember.


Diapers in a Basket

Organizing the NurseryHere's one of the ways that I organized my son's nursery before he was born, and I still use it now that he's a toddler! I found a nice, large rectangular wooden basket and lined the inside with a receiving blanket.


Yellow crosswalk sign.

Green Tips for Back to SchoolOther than the holiday season, back-to-school shopping offers consumers the largest opportunity to collectively vote with their dollars in support of environmentally and socially responsible products.


Angel in Pink

Angel in Pink - Rewards of BabysittingThis is a photo of my Granddaughter caught at naptime. Babysitting your grandchildren is so rewarding. They get love and you get love in return.


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