Artistic Remodeling of Atlanta

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UGH!  I hate to even think about this review I did back in 2012.

I’ve since had to delete it and make it clear that Artistic Remodeling of Atlanta and Kenny Tong are NOT to be trusted.  Period.  That’s all I care to say at this point.  But if you’re looking for a quality, qualified contractor, look elsewhere.

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Teaching My Child to Brush Her Teeth and Wash Her Hands

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teaching my child to brush her teeth

We successfully tackled potty training about a year and a half ago, so when my daughter started preschool last year, her teacher taught the class a song to help with proper hand washing.  To the tune of Row, Row, Row Your Boat:

Wash, wash, wash your hands,
Wash them very clean.
Wash the fronts and wash the backs,
and even in-between.  Yeah!*

*My daughter and I added the enthusiastic “yeah!”

teaching my child to brush her teeth


We would repeat a few times while she washed, and it served as a good way for her to remember to do a complete, proper hand wash.  teaching my child to brush her teeth - washing hands

So, here I find myself teaching my child to brush her teeth through song – along the same -ahem- note, we adapted the song to brushing teeth:

Brush, brush, brush your teeth,
Brush them very clean.
Brush the tops and brush the bottoms,
and even brush your tongue!

teaching my child to brush her teeth - washing-hands2

Do you have any clever songs you use with your kids? What ways do you help your kids learn and maintain good hygiene habits?

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Graco® SnugRide® Click Connect™ 40: The Most Comfortable Rear-Facing Car Seat EVER!

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A few years ago, momentum began to build for the case of keeping your child rear-facing for longer than the recommended one year.  So, last year when the American Academy of Pediatrics officially updated their stance, recommending rear-facing car seats at least until the age of two, with the idea that toddlers are more than five times safer when rear-facing.

Naturally, many parents glanced at their kids and then glanced at their infant carriers, scratching their heads at how on earth they would be able to adhere to these new guidelines — after all, their child was already crammed in there, legs squished between the carrier and the seat.

Enter: the Graco® SnugRide® Click Connect™ 40!

Graco® SnugRide® Click Connect™ 40

Comes in two designs: Mena (left) and Moonstruck (right)
Thanks, Krystyn of Really, Are You Serious for sharing this pic!

I had the opportunity to meet with about a dozen other Atlanta area mom bloggers, and we got an up-close look at this innovative car seat.  Some of its key features, allowing it to stand apart from other infant car seats currently on the market include:

  • simple “click” technology, allowing for super-easy, yet secure, transfer from car to stroller
  • accommodates 4 to 40 lbs rear facing — that’s a full two years for most infants/toddlers
  • 8 reclining positions to adjust for growing legs, and with more leg room the child sits up more, like a forward-facing seat
  • a foot rest/kick plate (with actual feet on it!) to keep your vehicle’s seat safe from busy feet (see pic below)
  • an easy, peasy harness adjustment mechanism: one swift move allows for easy adjustment — no more pulling the back of the car seat apart!
Graco® SnugRide® Click Connect™ 40
Look at the cute little feet!!
Photo courtesy of Really, Are You Serious
Y’all, I’m not kidding when I say, this car seat is super-cool, rocks-my-socks awesome!  And I don’t normally get excited about a car seat.  Honestly.  Your child will GROW with this car seat comfortably, and you will have the piece of mind in it’s safety for the full two years.
Graco® SnugRide® Click Connect™ 40
Here I am, pondering the seat…
The Graco® SnugRide® Click Connect™ 40 is available exclusively at Babies R Us for $219.99 — and additional bases and the “matching” stroller are also available.  Utilize a 20% off coupon, and you can snag this car seat for $176!
 
Graco® SnugRide® Click Connect™ 40
In spite of my shear enthusiam,
my son was not impressed by the whole ordeal…  ;o)
Looking for a super-cute way to keep your baby warm, while in the super-cute Graco® SnugRide® Click Connect™ 40?  You can get a FREE car seat canopy (just pay shipping) here, and use promo code ENBABY.
Graco® SnugRide® Click Connect™ 40

The Graco SnugRide® Click Connect™ 40 – the first and only newborn to two-year infant car seat that actually grows with your baby from four pounds all the way up to 40 pounds. The car seat is designed for a parent on the go. The infant car seat can be easily removed from the base and used as a carrier when the infant is small, providing portability and convenience so you can easily move your infant in and out of the car without disturbing them.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recently made the recommendation to keep all children in rear-facing car seats until the age of 2. Graco set out to make this product so parents can keep infants rear facing longer while still keeping them comfortable.
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Graco. The opinions and text are all mine.

 

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

10 Essential Newborn Items *Possible Baby Shower Gifts*

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Since my sister is weeks away from welcoming her first in to the world, I can’t help but find myself wondering around Amazon and other sites, looking at all the latest and greatest in the world of “baby stuff”.  (You know, since MY little guy is approaching his one year birthday…)

I recently came across this list of “Newborn Essentials” — and it claims to be 10 items “You Probably Didn’t Know You Needed”

While I think much of this is true, I can’t help but wonder, if y’all agree or disagree?  What would you add or take off this list?  :o)  I have SEVEN of these items — and y’all know I think many baby items aren’t essential!  Of course, every baby’s nursery should be filled with board books as well as well-loved classics to read aloud to your kids.

This list was compiled by Amazon here: 10 Essential Newborn Items and I added my own two cents, along with a few other things *I* find essential!  Would love to hear y’alls thoughts. 🙂

essential newborn items - moses basket

10.  A moses basket – designed to allow you to move a slumbering newborn from room to room, since that’s their primary job.  But please advice, you should NOT carry infant in said basket, as it’s neither designed nor sturdy enough for carrying a baby.  (So what’s the point of it, then??)

essential newborn items - diaper caddy

9. Diaper caddy – Meh.  This is also designed to make it easy to change baby anywhere.  But, IMO, unless you live in a luxurious, super-spacious mansion, why not just take baby to a dedicated diaper-changing spot?  We always kept a “station” downstairs in the den for diaper changes.  Mostly done on the floor.  (Did I mention, we never really used a changing table, too – especially with my second child?)

essential newborn items - portable swing

8. Travel swing – Ok.  So baby swings can be big, bulky space-suckers, but also complete life-savers for many a’weary parent or cranky baby.  So the best of both world are travel swings: they can fold up and come with you around the house, on the porch, wherever you need it to go!  You can usually pick one up second hand at a garage sale, consignment sale, or a local Facebook sell/swap group for under twenty bucks.

 essential newborn items - baby carriers

7.  sling or wrap – Hands down, I big-fat-puffy-pink-heart LOVED carrying/wearing my children.  For my daughter, I had a secondhand Baby Bjorn, and I snuggled with her particularly when I went to the grocery store, until she was big enough to sit up in the cart seat (with a cushiony grocery cart seat cover, of course!)  Once my son came along, a carrier become imperative!  Luckily, I was gifted a Moby Wrap – and, man!, once i got the hang of that thing, it was absolutely FANTASTIC, not to mention essential to keep me hands free with two children.  There are so  many carriers, slings, and wraps out there – you’re bound to find one that works for you and your baby.

essential newborn items - rocker/glider6.  glider – My son is two years old, and we still snuggle in our old, secondhand rickety glider.  Gliders/rockers are an essential luxury for bonding with your little ones – whether its used for nursing, reading, or just plain ol’ rocking.  Some of my sweetest moments with each of my children happened while rocking.

 essential newborn items - swaddle blanket

5.  swaddle blankets – holy moly!  I don’t know what parents with newborns did before these magical, miracle blankets! The very best advice I got when my son was a newborn and not fond of sleeping at night was to wrap him in a swaddle blanket, give him a paci, and crank up the sound machine.  As an added benefit, “baby burritos” just look so darn cute, don’t they?  😉  There are so many options to choose from, too: sleep sacks, straight-up swaddle blankets, and fitted/formed swaddling “pods”.  You can also check out more on baby sleeping advice here.

essential newborn items - sound machine

4.  white noise machine – Again, along with the swaddlers, I found the sound machine to be a God-send.  In fact, my kids are well past infancy, but they still sleep with one.  They are fantastic for blocking out noise, which means you don’t need to achieve a silent household in order for your little one to slumber.  You can get an actual sound machine (<== that’s the one I have in each of my kids’ rooms), or even utilize a free app on your smartphone.

essential newborn items - waterproof mattress pad

3.  waterproof mattress pad – Let’s face it: babies create yucky messes.  Your baby will vomit at some point in his crib.  He will also have an explosive diaper in his crib.  (…and if a seasoned parent claims otherwise, smack them for me, please!)  So, why not minimize the amount of mess you’re cleaning, by protecting the crib’s mattress.  Actually, keep two waterproof mattress pads on hand, so you can easily change the crib sheets AND the mattress pad all at once.

essential newborn items - burp cloths

2.  Ok, here’s where Amazon and I differ greatly…  Their list has a nasal aspirator listed in the #2 spot.  But, ….I just can’t put this on *my* personal “essentials” list.  Instead, I give a nod to good ol’ fashion burp cloths.  Not only do they serve a very practical purpose, but both of my kids adapted them as “blankies” with which they cuddle and sleep with, even at (almost) five years old!  Mine love the Gerber terry cloth burp cloths, which come in adorable patterns and in multi-packs.  For the purposes of actually USING a burp cloth, I love the Gerber flat fold 10-pack.  They come in white, and are handy for wiping up any mess a baby can -um- throw your way.  And once your littles are older, they make great dust cloths, too!

essential newborn items - breast pump

1.  breast pump device – Yes, yes, and yes.  Even if you don’t intend to bottle feed, a pump is your breast-feeding BFF.  If pumping will be a regular part of your routine, a hands-free pump simply allows you to more easily go about your business whilst pumping.  Plain.  And.  Simple.  You don’t *need* anything fancy, particularly if you end up with a baby who won’t take a bottle (like my firstborn!), but at the very least, every nursing mother will need relief from time to time.  Also, keep in mind that insurances these days will help with the cost.  (Check with your provider for more information.)

***Check out how to find and stock up on cheap diapers!  That’s certain an essential newborn item, I’d say.***

Did you know you can easily set up a baby registry via Amazon?


Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Bib Clip: Making Feedings (A Little Less) Messy

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Perhaps knowing that I would one day have a son, I bough gender-neutral “toddler” pullover bibs when my daughter outgrew her “baby” bibs about two years ago.  ( I opted for the Cookie Monster and Elmo combo, similar to these here.)

Fast forward to the present, I have baby boy intent on constantly pulling off his “baby” bibs (basically any velcro or snap-on bib).  So a few weeks ago, I decided to try putting him in his sister’s old pullover ones.  The problem being, however, those were too long, and resulted in a gaping hole up front, allowing some of most of his food to fall through on to his shirt – thus, defeating the purpose of said bib! 

My solution?  I clipped the bib in the back, about an inch away from his neck — and voila!  No more messes!
Keep on saving!  :o)
–Barbara 
**This post may contain affiliate links.**

Follow Me on Pinterest

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Homemade "Pixie Dust"

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Rumor has it, when mixed with happy thoughts, this edible, homemade pixie dust will lift your right off the ground.  ;o)


Riding the coattails of our trip to Disney World last month, I decided to create homemade (and edible) “pixie dust” for my daughter. It’s an easy thing to add to applesauce, PBJs, sprinkle a little over a plate of fruit — you name it! The best part? Thanks to my friends at NurturMe, it’s got peas and sweet potatoes in it!!

Here’s what I did. I used 1 package of NurturMe peas and 1 package of NurturMe sweet potatoes, combined with about 2 tablespoons of cinnamon, and 1 small tablespoon of sugar.  Voila!  Edible Pixie Dust.  


(Note: you’ll need to stir it a little bit before sprinkling on, as it tends to settle after a while.)

Keep on saving!  :o)
–Barbara
**This post may contain affiliate links.**

Follow Me on Pinterest

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

**HOT TIP** Utilizing Your Sunday Coupon Previews!

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My wonderfully sweet and super smart blogger friend, Laura of Another Cent Saved, shared a clever tip with me for keeping your coupons organized, and I simply MUST pass it on to you.

If you fall behind in your clipping, or if you simply don’t clip your coupons at all, but want a simple way to keep track of which coupons are in which insert, you can use the alphabetized list available from the Sunday Coupon Preview to help keep your inserts organized!  Just print the list out, staple or clip to the front of each insert, and -boom!- your done!  This also works for back issues as well, as they’re all archived.

Further you can cross items off the page once you’ve used them.  GENIUS!!!

How stinkin’ simple is that!??  Thanks again, Laura and Another Cent Saved!!  :o)


Keep on saving!  :o)

–Barbara
**This post may contain affiliate links.**
Follow Me on Pinterest

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Revising My Mission Statement

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Mission Statement

In the last year or so, the number of “deal/frugal bloggers” has exploded exponentially!  I started Atlanta’s Frugal Mom as a means to share my money-saving strategies with my continuously growing reader base.

However, as happens, life seems to slow down the pace of the blog.  The idea of AFM was born shortly after my daughter was born, and became a reality about a year thereafter.  In the meantime, -well- life continued to happen.  I started teaching preschool, and then found out our cozy family of three would be expanding, along with my waistline.  ;o)  With pregnancy and then the birth of my son, the blog simply had to take a backseat.

While I feel like I’ve learned much about myself and about blogging in the process, as well as met many incredible bloggers -many of whom I am now proud to call my friends- I feel like I fell behind the times a bit, so to speak.  I’ve given careful consideration to the direction AFM needs to take, in order to continue to stay relevant in a world over-saturated with deal/coupon blogs.  I have no intention of discontinuing what I’ve been doing, on the contrary!

I do, however, plan to shift my focus slightly.  There are, after all, three components to Atlanta’s Frugal Mom:

  1. Atlanta — events and opportunities in and around the metro Atlanta area;
  2. Frugal – frugal living, including but not limited to, coupons and money-saving advice and deals;
  3. Mom – parenting advice, “frugal parenting”, little nuggets of sage wisdom (hee hee!), and my own observations, lamentations, and curiosities relating to being a mom.
Up until now, my focus has been on the Frugal portion of the blog, with “Atlanta” coming in at a close second.  However, the “mom” component simply can’t be ignored.  With that, I bring to you “Wordless Wednesdays“, where I share little glimpses in to my life as a mother, rich with sweet little red-headed morsels of cuteness. As well as my “Frugal Parenting” pieces — which serve as quick little snippets of ideas to take and use as you see fit.  (And if you see anything Pinterest-worthy, by all means “pin” away!)

In addition to shifting my focus, I am rather excited to get to start bringing you all many giveaway opportunities, as they become available to me.  With my “bloggers circle” expanding, comes more networking, which has opened many new doors for me.   I have partiicpated in quite a few giveaways within the last six months — some being fantastic opportunities, other -eh- not so great.  But with each experience comes new lessons and ideas, and I learn to be a bit more discerning about with whom I choose to work.

I digress.  My mission statement is shifting, as I alluded to earlier.  I will always continue to bring my readers great deals, but I must also focus on the other two pieces: Atlanta and parenting.  After all, I would not be who I am if I was just “frugal”.  :o)

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Putting the Baby’s Stamp on Cards

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Since my infant son is still too young to help his big sis “make” cards for various occasions, I try to include him in the process anyhow. 🙂


Keep on saving!  :o)
–Barbara 

**This post may contain affiliate links.**

Follow Me on Pinterest

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

(Not so) Wordless Wednesday – 8/29/12

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My daughter spent the day with my parents yesterday, and came home with some of the chocolate chip cookie they made. Apparently, she’s a (chocolate) chip off the ol’ block!

Happy Wednesday, y’all!


Keep on saving!  :o)
–Barbara 

**This post may contain affiliate links.**

Follow Me on Pinterest

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Atlanta's Frugal Mom is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon. In other words, if you click through to Amazon from some of the books or products I recommend and make a purchase, I get a small percentage in exchange for your purchase. It's a small way you can support AFM.