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Christmas Magic Starts Here!

Start a Magical Christmas Family Tradition That Your Remember Fondly!

Give the one-of-a-kind memorable EXPERIENCE of receiving a Package From Santa! 

Every Package From Santa includes both tangible & technological delights including: 
* a personalized Santa Letter that arrives in the mail
* a personalized VIDEO starring your child via email
* a personalized PHONE CALL
* a personalized printable NICE LIST GUIDE
* and the option to upgrade with MORE goodies! 

Get 25% off every package you order using code FAM2060

Have your camera ready to video every step of this special Santa experience! It all starts at the mail box when the Package From Santa arrives from the North Pole! Delight in the process of making Christmas magic come alive in a very personal way for your child, grandchild, niece, nephew, or any little one you know! has options for EVERY BUDGET starting at $14.95 with an array of add-on goodies to choose from. Create a custom package for each child! 

Maximizing Rebate and Cash Back Apps Like Dosh for Everyday Shopping

Spring into action! Did you know you could be doubling your apps for savings on food, travel, gas, and more--all the stuff in life that sucks up your income?! You can!

I have to admit, it was hard for me to make the switch from scissors and pouring over newspapers and ads to downloading and learning the ins and outs of apps. Places you regularly spend money -- super centers, wholesale stores, even your favorite restaurants and hotels are places where savings are hiding, waiting for you to find it! This is also true for only using your go-to savings app. I want you to know you could be maxing out your savings potential by simply casting a broader net!

 Here are some of my favorite apps and some savvy ways to serve as examples of how to double your savings apps to get the most money back!

Dosh – Dosh is quite unique compared with other rebate apps, and it suits me well! It's mostly effortless, though I will say I see the perks more in the metro areas when traveling than in rural and backroad situations. You get $5 just for signing up, plus an additional $2 per card you link! Dosh then keeps track of your purchases for you and gives you money back on any qualifying purchases. Dosh also runs seasonal and nearly monthly promotions featuring referrals and cash back bonuses which make it a lucrative app indeed. Below, a neat spring bonus offer garnered folks some extra cash.

Honey - When shopping online, I almost always use my Honey extension from Google Chrome. It's still a little wonky -- for instance, it only works for me when I'm on my laptop, not mobile or on my iPad. So, if I know I can probably get an online promo code for shipping or other discounts, I'll try to checkout via laptop for certain sites.

Ebates – Ebates is a well-known rebate app but certainly not my favorite. For some reason, it's not intuitive for me. Like many apps for new users, you can get $10 when start. The $25 bonus for referring a friend is nice, but be sure to read if the friend needs to make some action for you to collect, as is often the case.

Ibotta – Oh, Ibotta. This app was one a friend suggested and at the time I was still kickin' it old school on my flip phone, so I didn't pay much attention. In fact, I don't even remember signing up. I didn't even save A SINGLE CENT in my first year. Which made it embarrassing when the kind folks at Ibotta wanted to celebrate:

Yes, I was a rising star, it would seem. This still makes me chuckle. Once I started utilizing my iPad and iPhone, I was a lot more interested in Ibotta. It pairs nicely with Target, if you happen to sport the red bullseye bags often.

You can earn a bunch of "free" money just with sign ups, as you're probably realizing. However, make sure you keep track of any required minimums for cashing out your millions. Make sure to max them out and cash them out so they don't just sit there, near but not at your minimum levels.

Maxing Out at Walmart and Target

As much as I love Amazon for online and the local farmers market for produce, Let’s break down which apps partner with these stores plus additional ways you can save as well!

Walmart partner apps 

Dosh – 3% back (or more if there is a promotion!)
Ebates – up to 10% back
Ibotta – Savings throughout the store, could be hundreds depending on what you buy and how much!

Target partner apps

Ebates – 1% back
Ibotta – Again, save up to hundreds on brands throughout the store
Typically, I've found at Target you save more with your Target Red Card, offering 5% on everything.
Target also allows you to use double coupons. So, in this way, you might save more by going slightly more old school!

Even better (and even bigger) savings can be found when you look at the vacation side of rebate apps and discount sites! This is definitely what gets me the most excited too because who doesn’t love a good vacation? So let’s look at some the best savings available right now:

Dosh also offers $25 off your first hotel rental plus discounted trips, so if you just need to get away from it all, make sure to use my favorite app to save big!

Disclosure: This is a post made possible as a DOSH Insider and I did receive compensation for sharing my tips with you.

How to maximize cash back for summer fun with DOSH

Online shopping is great. Some prefer the in-person experience. The great news is BOTH experiences are available to you while using DOSH for your shopping needs. And the best part? You're going to be a master of maximizing cash back after you download the free app and get the hang of it. Here are some tips to help you on your way!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. It includes affiliate links. All opinions are my own.

This year, I committed to making more informed purchases. I needed to start investing better and saving more. I am a big fan of learning the art of passive income (which, admittedly, I have no idea how to master, but I'm willing to be a student. So, if you have tips, mention them in the comments!) I know most people have affiliate links for popular online shopping markets. I can do that. DOSH was just another way for me to watch the dollars add up and an easy way for me to save.

Tip #1 -- DOWNLOAD the APP!

Have you ever heard that old saying --  "The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is NOW." Well, that's the case with DOSH. It would have been better if you'd downloaded it last year, when I told you about it, but if you're just catching on, that's okay, too!

Good news is that DOSH is free to use and an easy way to get cash back on purchases that you already make. For those planning travel adventures in the New Year, you can also get cash back on hotel bookings. It can all really add up!

Tip #2 -- Link Rewards Cards (or any cards)

The key to really doubling down is linking your travel rewards card to book hotels and other travel costs. You'll be getting your cash back points for using your rewards card AND you'll get your DOSH cash back directly to your wallet when you book through the app. It's a no brainer! Even if you don't yet have a rewards card, you can still make a great money-saving choice with the DOSH app.

Tip #3 -- Check Back, Tell Friends

You'll want to keep the app at hand, and open it on the reg. DOSH adds merchants super often and you never know if you favorite restaurant will be the newest addition. For a better bang for your buck, refer your friends, have them link a card, and when they make their first purchase through the DOSH app, they get their cashback and you'll get a referral bonus! Another old saying says there is power and numbers and with DOSH that can't be any more apparent!

Tip #4 -- Save Where You Spend

If you a traveler, you'll love getting rewarded for your galavanting! Your first hotel room booked through DOSH will get you an extra $25 bonus! This bonus can be your baggage fee (if you're not a minimalist carry-on packer) for your next foray or it can go toward a bottle of well-deserved wine after a red eye to Vegas. No matter where you spend, you'll be rewarded when you spend through DOSH. 

General Mills "Feeding Better Futures" Scholars Program Seeks Youth Applicants Thru March 5th

General Mills launched the "Feeding Better Futures Scholars Program" in January, which seeks youth to share their ideas to help solve the challenges of feeding our growing world population. 

Feeding Better Futures will address hunger relief and sustainable agriculture issues by championing the bright ideas of today's youth. Youth are being asked to pitch their brilliant ideas for the opportunity to present their solutions at the Aspen Ideas Festival. This also means being partnered with industry mentors and earning up to $50,000 for their program and their education. 

Pretty neat, right? Absolutely. 

While I do not have children in the appropriate age demographic, I know many of you DO! Let those children shine. You have a little over five days to get the ideas in, kids. Parents -- encourage those little (BIG) brains to think critically and then enter the program. We're in this together! Good luck! I cannot wait to see the ideas which blossom from this meeting of young minds!

Disclosure: I partnered with General Mills to get the word out about this amazing program for kids. All opinions are my own and I was provided modest consideration by the brand for my effort to help spread the word, but my enthusiastic support of solving world problems with bright young minds is 100% my own.


This is a sponsored post.  All opinions are 100% mine. I am a Dosh insider and this article is one of several in a series that will document my experience using the app this year. This article contains my affiliate link for Dosh. If you click through to check out Dosh, it costs you nothing. I may receive a small commission, which goes towards website up-keep.

Here's your monthly update on the Dosh App!!! If you've been reading for the last few months, you know I'm an insider for DOSH (Beta version) and I've been sharing the best deals and tips for using the app, especially as it relates to travel to get cash back. Well, this update is super relevant to getting money for the trips you DO take, to well, pay for the trips you WANT to take! It's the DOSH Cash Back Multiplier and it can make a big difference in how you save!


Here's what you're going to do: sign up for the FREE DOSH APP. You can see online deals and "nearby" deals for more local businesses to patronize with your business while getting your cash back. There's your cash back % -- but it's also an opportunity to earn 10x regular cash back!!! Wanna know how easy it is? I know you do! Haha!
All you need to do is make your purchase from a participating online merchant or brick and mortar, and then SHARE on Twitter or Facebook! The deal is UP TO 10x more than the regular cash back amount! Some of the deals and promotions I share have an expiration -- this one is not planned to go away. I've verified it at the time of publication with DOSH folks personally. 

The Dosh Cash Back Multiplier became "a thing" in October and I hadn't paid a ton of attention. Boy am I bummed that I haven't been sharing my savings! Yikes! Missed opportunity! So, now I'm sharing it with you, hoping to see some mad savings come your way too!
So, in review -- sign up for this FREE app to save on travel (or just many of your regular purchases) and for a bonus, use your travel rewards card as the linked card. You'll be double dipping in a way, getting your rewards and your cash back too! Then, share your savings and reap the extra rewards. It's so easy!
I'd LOVE to hear how you've been saving with DOSH! Comment below with your best savings and tips for others to maximize this awesome money saving cash back app!

Get $25 for Booking a Room with DOSH (an easy money-saving travel app)

I'm a DO$H insider. This post was sponsored in a partnership with DO$H. All opinions are my own. 

A New Year of Travel 

Who is busy planning their year of travel? Personally, I'm looking for a warmer escape and possibly a chill-out break to recover from planning and running Cub Scout meetings, taking minutes for the PTO, and the emotional toll of accepting a pretty full-time job again. For the first time in YEARS!

Well, there's a million reasons to book a vacation mid-winter and a great reason is to save for your SUMMER vacation. That's right. Go on vacation to pay for your next vacation!!

This little travel bonus is $25.00 (nearly) free and clear, just for staying at a hotel. You're doing it anyway, so why not reap the extra reward AND the cash back? And probably those travel rewards points from the card which you booked with as well! Cha-ching! This offer is only good for your first hotel booking. 

Save for Vacation, While on Vacation

Yes, it's a bold move. The stuff you book and spend while on vacation will earn you cash back with the DOSH app, thus, paying toward your next foray! In a long weekend or a week-long getaway, you could make a few hundred dollars in cash back with DOSH! Depending on how much you book and where you stay, it could mean your entire next vacation will be subsidized by your smart money-saving savvy! Aren't you clever!?

When You Mean Business

^^See that Pro Tip? What a grand idea! Take it a step further and book a retreat or meeting for your company! Planning the event can really pad the DOSH rewards wallet! Do make sure you're not violating any company policies first! (This may not be a great idea for say, federal employee travel!) But, in many cases, this will be a great travel hack to garner more cash back! And, you're helping out your work buddies, too! 

I'm a DO$H insider. This post was sponsored in a partnership with DO$H. All opinions are my own. 

Planning a Year of Savings with the DOSH App

Planning with the DOSH App for the New Year 

When it comes to cash back I don't do coupons and clipping and Sunday papers. I like being able to save where I'm already cashing in on points with cards I'm already using. I also like having goals in mind with my savings -- as an incentive to keep earning. So, 'tis the season for saving as we ring in the new year! Here are a few places where you probably already spend money (likely with your reward cards) where you can get mega cash back.

Kate Spade – 5.2% Cash Back
Hobby Lobby – 3% Cash Back
National Geographic Online Store – 6% Cash Back
Bed Bath & Beyond – 7.5% Cash Back
Merrell – 5.2% Cash Back
Sephora – 3.8% Cash Back
Big Lots – 3% Cash Back
Zoobooks Magazine – Up to 26.2% Cash Back
Target – 1.5% Cash Back
Walmart – 3% Cash Back
Shop Disney – 2.2% Cash Back Max

A Year of Saving Money with DOSH 

Now, imagine if you will, putting a plan in motion which will be easier to stick with than a new Pilates routine or a juicing diet. Just write down some of the places where you always spend money and turn that money spent into cash back by using the DOSH app for those purchases. Think of how a YEAR of 2%-25% back could add up on everyday purchases! That's a resolution worth making!

I know I've spent half of 2017 talking about saving serious $$$ with the DOSH app. And I plan to continue trying to share this awesome cash back app with you in 2018. So have you signed up? I sure hope so! I'd love to know about the ways you've used the app in your everyday life and spending to maximize your savings. Tell me you plan for the new year and what you're saving up for!

Disclosure: I received compensation from DOSH for creating the content in this post. All opinions are my own!

Around the World with Yogurt - Holiday Traditions in Ethnic Cuisine with Stonyfield Organic + Recipe

In my family, we always had holiday dinner at precisely 1:00 p.m. No exceptions. We'd begin with a very short, recited prayer. The kids would sit in the kitchen, while the adults and older cousins with elevated privilege to sit and eat in the carpeted dining room would join the masses at the larger oak table. If it was Thanksgiving, forget the parade, the Lions game would be on, guaranteed.

I loved these traditions, however small each detail was. I still come to expect my holiday dinner invitations, no matter the season, to include a 1:00 p.m. start time. However, now that I'm adulting in my own home, I have decidedly different traditions taking shape.

Holidays with a World View

I've taken to the idea (sometimes to my family's dismay) of trying a new recipe and learning about a new culture whenever we sit down for a holiday feast. No matter what I decide to make, it's nice to know I almost always have a tub of Stonyfield organic yogurt on hand to make use of in my recipes, making things just a little healthier and feeling good about the fact that the source of the ingredients won't be harming the earth. There are so many talking points when we approach holiday meals like this! From culture to environmental stewardship...the places the kids take it from there is just as adventurous!

Last year for our New Year's Eve meal, we dug out our pictures from our epic 33 day road trip to Alaska and had King Crab flown in from Tracy's Crab Shack along with some smoked salmon. We talked about all of our adventures and a little about tide pools. While this was not a real cultural unveiling, it was a nice way to reflect on good times as a family.

This year, we're traveling (if vicariously through spices and food) to the Punjab region of India and Pakistan. This is a really easy recipe, using simple ingredients like good-for-you yogurt and spices, paired with fresh veggies and fruit. It's nearly effortless and full of flavor!

Tandoori Chicken with Mango [Chutney] or Fresh Fruit Salad

Chicken tandoori is really just chicken marinated in yogurt, citrus and spices before being prepared -- in my case, baked then broiled. The tandoor, the namesake of the dish is an oven where it is traditionally cooked in the Punjab region of India and Pakistan. I had every intent of making mango chutney to serve alongside, but I didn't have all I needed to make it, and as life sometimes just keeps chugging even when you have other plans, the kids got illnesses and my time became limited. So instead, I did a lime/mango fresh fruit salad on the side and they LOVED it. And we won't be getting scurvy anytime soon with all that citrus! Ha! We also served it with spelt and barley grains and steamed green beans -- which makes it Indian fusion I guess, but it's what the family wanted!


This year, I really wanted the kids to like what I made without much fuss since they were sick, so not only did I let them help, BUT I eliminated some of the heat from most Tandoori Chicken recipes -- so this one didn't have the ginger, though it called for it.


Make a few drummies with Italian dressing. It looks similar but is so mild, just in case the kids decide Indian is too flavorful. OR, don't even tell them, and then they'll think they like it, so next time you serve it they may not complain! It's worth a shot! 


Bake for 45 minutes, turning once, chicken skin should be getting crisp. Cook thoroughly. 
(I used a baking dish instead of the racks, because I hate cleaning my oven. So there was a bit of juice created and thus I had to drain it off when I turned the meat.) 
Servings: 12 drumsticks
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Bake Time: 1 Hour

Recipe Ingredients 

1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon curry powder 
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground tumeric
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
4 garlic cloves [use garlic press for ease]
Zest and juice from one lime 
1/4 cup EVOO
2 teaspoons salt
12 chicken drumsticks 
2-3 fresh mangoes- sliced, 1-2 fresh limes - wedged


Mix the ingredients in a bowl, pour onto chicken in a gallon-sized plastic bag. Put in the fridge a few hours to one night before baking. 

Preheat the oven to 450°F. 

Line a baking sheet with heavy duty aluminum foil and place a cooking rack on top. (This is where I just used a glass baking dish, uncovered.) Put the drumsticks in and cover with the spicy marinade mixture. 

Roast for 45 minutes, turning once halfway, until the chicken is sort of crispy, brown and cooked through. This may set off smoke alarms, as it will start to char a bit. (If not now, then for sure when you broil in the next step!) 

Turn on the broiler for 3-5 minutes, until chicken is slightly charred and has crisp skin.

Serve with grains and a fresh vegetable. We loved having mango and lime slices to cleanse our palates a bit and for a fruity zing to offset the heat of the chicken. 

Enjoy! Make sure to talk to your kids about the Tandoor oven. They may like a YouTube video which shows what it looks like to cook with this type of traditional oven.

Disclosure: I am a Stonyfield writer and affiliate. This post was sponsored by Stonyfield in partnership with the company. I was compensated. The thoughts expressed are my own. 

DOSH Money-Saving App Limited Time Cash Back Offer

I'm a DO$H insider. This post was sponsored in a partnership with DO$H. All opinions are my own. 

DO$H Rewards for the Holiday Season 

Save money this holiday season on the purchases you make from Cyber Monday to the experiences you have gifted and will embark upon now through the New Year. DOSH has a great incentive going on now for just a few more days to help line your wallet with a little more green. 

Referral Bonus $

From now until 12/1, Dosh is giving $15 to any user who signs up new users. That means for each person you refer, you get $15 just for them downloading the app and adding a card. They will also give $5 to each referred person who then links their card. There is no cap on the amount of people you can refer. 

Please Note (and tell your friends) -- The $15 offer is ONLY good IF the referred user links a card.

$15 adds up fast! I know if just a few friends sign up I can roll that wallet love into a mini-vacation when the snow starts to wear on me! It can be an extra night out or it can mean ordering the lobster instead of the Linguine! Send your referral link to your friends, make sure they link a card, and then you both get to reap the rewards!

Hurry! Ends December 1st! 

I'm a DO$H insider. This post was sponsored in a partnership with DO$H. All opinions are my own. 

If Sam's Club is Your Jam, Get the DOSH App!

*Sponsored Content* to follow, but rest assured, it will be awesome!*

Cash back app DO$H -- an in-house fave here--has just added Sam’s Club the list of retailers and wholesale stores who accept the money-back app. So, if you're a Sam's member, this means that you can start earning an extra 2% back when you shop at Sam’s Club locations, in-store only. Now that's good news! Stock up!

Note: A membership is required at Sam's Club for earning 2% back (or even being able to get your shopping done!) So, consider finding a Groupon or a Living Social offer when memberships come up and GO FOR IT! The great news? There are currently no plans to take this offer away! 

Other new offers that are also pretty exciting include the following retailers and restaurants:

Forever 21 - 5% (in-store) 
Cost Plus World Market - 2% (in-store), 4% (online)

Denny's - 10% (in-store)

How You Can Save at Sam's Club and Elsewhere

Start by connecting your credit & debit cards to the Dosh cash back app. Only Visa, Mastercard and Amex are supported at this time (the time of posting.) Then use the cards for purchases at verified Dosh partners and get cash back. No coupons. No high-minimum cash outs. No fuss. No muss. Just cash back from purchases at merchants you already patronize. We particularly love watching the DO$H wallet grow in the travel realm-- Dosh has a section for booking hotels, car rentals and tons of restaurants for your next vacation!

I'm a DO$H insider. This post was sponsored in a partnership with DO$H. All opinions are my own. 

DOSH App: Save Money on Your Favorites in Travel, Dining, and Shopping Every Day

You may have seen how I like to be a thrifty shopper in one of my latest articles -- all about my favorite consignment shop -- if not, read that as soon as you're through here, because I'm saving LOADS of money there too! 
Now, back to DOSH -- this app has me getting $$$ back on so many of the things I already purchase (and get deals on) -- yes, cash on top of savings. Cha-ching! It's one of those things I can "handle" on my busy mom balancing schedule. Why? Because it's a no-brainer. It takes about a minute to get the app and connect your cards. Not only do you get paid to connect cards and join, you start seeing cash coming in quickly. Even better? You don't have to wait for high cash-out minimums -- just $15 in cash-back and you can decide if you want that money or if you want to keep building it in your account, or if you want to donate to your favorite charity. So simple!

Doubling Up Savings 

If you're a points-minded person, you already use your favorite earning cards for your dining, travel, groceries, etc. Wherever you can, you're using your best points card, right? Well, imagine a world where you're using the same card, but getting a percentage of your purchase back in cash, along with the points you earn. That world is the one you will live in when you use DOSH. simple!
I like shopping local, and eating local -- DOSH will show you the participating stores, hotels, restaurants, etc. in your area when you search and you can choose where to patronize and where to save! 

Couponers, Rejoice!

Like the Sunday paper? Or Target's Cartwheel app maybe? Coupon clipper through and through? (I think that's still a thing, right? We still have paper coupons in the middle of nowhere here in the Midwest, and I still proudly hand over a fistful!) However, sometimes, not having to work for your cash back is best. DOSH doesn't need to scan any barcodes, there's no paper coupons exchanged (and bonus: no litter created or recycling needed!), no promo codes, no mail-in rebate programs. None of it. It's just there when you create an account, connect your cards, and start getting your cash back.

Check in, Cash out

Y'all know I love to travel. My suitcase is nearly always packed. If I'm not on the road, I'm planning the next trip. Check out the hotel offerings in your DOSH area -- you can change the location or use the default -- Chicago, New York, etc. The app clearly shows you what the DOSH rate is for check in and how much cash you'll get back in the transaction. So, again, the points/miles, the savings, and the cash back. You know how much better those soft, white hotel linens feel when you're getting paid a little bit of cash back to be there? Pretty good. If you don't believe me, plan a getaway for the weekend and watch the "Congrats! You've got $XYZ from a DOSH Merchant" messages stack up!
Download the app. Tell me how your savings are rolling in. All you have to lose is the money you're not getting back right now...

Disclosure: I'm a DOSH influencer. All opinions are my own. 

Every Mile Mattered ~ Nichole Nordeman

I remember being too busy to get my video clip in for Nichole Nordeman's "Slow Down" video. Then, my MUMS group played the video one day and it was so moving to hear and see all the videos of fellow writers and bloggers set to the sound. I was REALLY sad I'd missed putting my child's tender moments to music (which I know I COULD do in iMovie or something, but NEVER will!)

So, when I got the chance to preview her newest album, "Every Mile Mattered" -- I knew I loved her voice and wanted to hear more! I wasn't passing it up this time! 

I really like the tracks "Lean" and "Dear Me" but the title track "Every Mile Mattered" has hit me closest to home lately. It's absolutely telling of where I have been in my life and as with the draw of music in general, it's cathartic to hear emotions set to beautiful sound. And, since I'm no poet, hearing what I was feeling sung eloquently was even more satisfying. Nichole's voice is ethereal and really puts me in a Zen place.

For more on Nichole Nordeman:

Official website –
Buy links – ITunes

She has a book “SLOW DOWN” coming out in August, pre-order here: .

Check out Nichole’s blog and sign up for newsletters!

Disclosure: I was given a complimentary CD as a FlyBy Promotions influencer.