• Budget Smart Cook,  Budget Smart Girl's Guide

    Holiday Mocktail-Cinnamon and Cumin-Infused Cranberry Spritzer

        Cranberries and cranberry juice are on sale just about everywhere so it’s the perfect time to put together this fun and very refreshing holiday mocktail. Prep time: 5 minutes, plus chill time Cook time: 10 minutes Serves: 6 Ingredients: 1 c. fresh or frozen cranberries ¼ c. honey ½ c. water 2 T whole cumin seeds 4 cinnamon sticks 3 c. unsweetened cranberry juice 2 medium organic oranges, each cut into 8 wedges 3 c. sparkling water Optional Garnish: Additional cinnamon sticks 6 long rosemary sprigs, lower leaves removed, and threaded with fresh cranberries Directions: Add cranberries, honey, water, cumin seeds, and cinnamon sticks to a small saucepan…

  • Budget Smart Girl's Guide,  Crafts

    Easy to Make, Budget Friendly, Candy Cane Wreath

    I know some of you love to make crafts (especially during the holiday season), so I asked my friend Sue to share one of her easy to make and very budget friendly Christmas crafts with you. Sue has her own craft blog and this month’s theme is homemade cards so go check it out.     If you’re on a tight budget, yet love to decorate your house for the holidays, you don’t need to spend a fortune. In fact I have the perfect thing you can make and all the supplies are from the Dollar Store. Can’t get any cheaper than that, can you? The Dollar Store has a…

  • Budget Smart Girl's Guide

    Getting Ready for Black Friday and Cyber Monday

      Yes, it’s that time of year again when retailers gear up for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Bargains await…or do they? During the holidays is when lots of people who’ve been sticking to a budget all year, throw in the towel, common sense goes out of the window and before you know you start the new year wondering what happened. Here are a five tips to make sure you’re not one of those people-   A Bargain isn’t always a bargain Been there and done that…or bought that. Just because a retailer tells you it’s on sale and a bargain doesn’t make it so. If there’s something you’re specifically…

  • Budget Smart Girl's Guide,  Products and Companies Worth Checking Out

    Canadian Free Stuff

        Over the years of running Budget Smart Girl, I’ve had lots of Canadian subscribers ask me about coupons and deals for them. Finally I have a site for you to check out. Here’s an interview with Theresa Bruce who runs CanadianFreeStuff…   Budget Smart Girl (BSG)-Tell us about you and your site? Theresa Bruce (TB)-I first started out this free Canadianfreestuff back in 2000 as a hobby, and at that time loved getting free samples in the mail – Back in those days there were some fabulous free offers you could receive. My mailbox had something new and cool every week back in those days. Free T-shirts and other…

  • Budget Smart Girl's Guide

    Meal Planning… Save Time, Save Money, Eat Healthier…stay sane

        I love to cook and I think it’s a skill that helps me save money and eat healthier foods. One thing I’m a huge believer in is meal planning. Every week I sit down plan out one or two weeks, yes, even a whole month’s meals. I print out recipes and then make a grocery list and that way I don’t waste food or give in to impulse buys. This year, I’ve been busy…maybe I’m getting a bit fatigued with the whole meal planning thing too, but I thought wouldn’t it be great if someone else did this for me? I did an Internet search for meal planning sites, tried…

  • Budget Smart Girl's Guide

    Credit Cards-Enemy of the Budget Smart Girl…well sometimes-Part Two

      Here’s part two of when it might be a good idea to use a credit card… You Get a Bonus – Some credit cards offer you immediate cash and credit the moment you open the account and if you use it within a certain amount of time. If you pay the bill off before it adds interest then it’s a great deal. You Get Cash Back – If you’re going to get cash back for your purchases, and you’re going to pay it off before any interest is added, then it’s a good deal. Points to You– Some cards offer points which can be used for things like flights,…

  • Budget Smart Girl's Guide

    Credit Cards-Enemy of the Budget Smart Girl…not always-Part One

      I have to admit I’m not a fan of credit cards. I delayed having one, until many years ago when I took a trip with my mother to the Pacific Northwest. We’d booked a rental car and when we landed at the airport, my mother discovered she’d left her driver’s license at home. I handed over mine but because I didn’t have a credit card they wouldn’t let us rent the car in my name, even though we had mom’s credit card. Long story short, my mom did find her driver’s license after another search of her purse and we got our rental car. All was not lost but when I…

  • Budget Smart Girl's Guide

    Ten Phone Shopping Apps That Could Save You Money

      Just about everyone has a cellphone and new shopping apps you can use on them are springing up every week. Many of them can help you save money via percent off coupons, tell you about daily deals, or provide rebates. Here are ten you might want to check out…   LivingSocial – This shopping app that works on both Android and iOS will help you find local deals that are up to 90 percent off. You can match the deals to your shopping list. https://www.livingsocial.com/mobile Amazon Price Check – This app helps you scan barcodes in person to find out if you can get the item less expensively online…

  • Budget Smart Girl's Guide

    Splurge on Clothing and Shoes?

      I’m seeing lots of articles about fashion week and what’s going to be the next ‘in thing’ in clothing. Some of my clothes are older than I’d like to admit to and I think I’ve always been budgt savvy about making wise purchases. Cheap isn’t always necessarily better especially if you want them to last. So here are some tips on how to decide if something is worth spending more money on… Check Your Closet Look in your closet. Note any clothing that is not a well-known, well-made brand, which you bought on the spur of the moment because it was cheap. After you wear these items and clean them,…

  • Budget Smart Cook,  Budget Smart Girl's Guide

    Slow Cookers are a Budget Smart Girl’s Best Friend

      I own two slow cookers and I’m seriously thinking about adding to my collection. I’ve owned one of them for close to 20 years but the second one was a refurbished one I bought for $9 from Hollar. It’s programmable where the first one isn’t and to say it gets used a lot is an understatement. These machines use little energy, save you time, and best of all save you money. Bottom line, these wonder machines are a budget smart girl’s best buddy. No Fuss Meals For starters, slow cookers are perfect for creating no-fuss, one-pot meals. As an added bonus, they render cheaper cuts of meat mouthwateringly tender…

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