Here are some simple, practical, inexpensive ways to save time, money and memories, while laughing all the way with some of my favorite heartwarming resources.
Keep Spare Keys
Getting locked out of anything~a car, a house, a room~is maddening and can interrupt even the best of moods lol. Thankfully, it is easy to avoid this #aintnobodygottimeforthis headache. Instead of calling a locksmith (I have a good one if you live in Bham lol) or AAA, just reach for your own well-hidden key(s). Here’s how I hide mine.
- House Key. I have a house key hidden for the chance that I get locked out (which has happened). I have a place but love this faux rock for key/cash. Very novel and looks real (to me).
- Car Key. For kids driving to and from college, this magnetic key holder is a great gadget to have. Since teens often drive older models without keyless entry, having a spare key under the car can save the day if they get locked out. For girls, this is a safety issue as well.
Stock a “Gift Closet”
It is a great feeling to need a last minute gift and know it is as far as your closet. Because gift giving can arise when we have to least time to go shopping, I like to stock a gift closet. It is basically gifts, preferably wrapped, to pull out as needed. Here are my current budget friendly, beautiful, and versatile (anyone can use) gifts.
- Marble Cookbook or Tablet Holder. Y’all, I have 10 of these en route to my house (arriving tomorrow). They are perfect for a “good” Dirty Santa gift, teacher gift, or friend gift. $20 bonus pricing (but not sure how long).
- Gold Edge White Marble Coasters. These are fabulous, and any adult could use coasters. The price point is spot on also.
Save Time and Money With This Hack
My favorite way to save time and money simultaneously is Rakuten. I’m a huge fan of online shopping, and I save tons by getting cash back via Rakuten. To show you my cash back just for November, I took a screenshot (below). Note: Lifelock membership and Groupon purchases are just a few of many ways to save with Rakuten. I share more details in this blog post~ How to Save Big Money Every Time with this Shopping Hack.
Save Your Memories
Few things are more precious to most than memories. Old photos, undocumented, are an accident waiting to happen. This one fear of mine has finally been put to rest. Up until last week, my photos were a hot mess. After seeing that “box” services are outrageously expensive and a huge headache (who wants to mail photos off?), I decided to nail it myself (with a little help). Here is what I did, and how I did it. Can I tell you that this ONE thing has made my entire year?
- Buy a scanner. I chose this Epson FastFoto one based on reviews and on speed. I bought online at Best Buy; my husband picked it up for me a few hours later. I buy things like this from Best Buy so that I can easily return if I don’t like it. This scanner is a keeper, though. #highlyrecommend I’ll use the scanner from now on for receipts/taxes, etc…..
- Delegate the Scanning. Unless you have tons of time and patience, this task is a great one to delegate. I paid my capable young helper to do the job, and it was worth every penny. He worked approximately 12 hours and scanned almost 5,000 photos.
- Store photo files in 2 separate places. My helper, Jackson, scanned my photos directly into my Macbook Pro. After this, he transferred all the files to this 2 TB Lacie. I bought mine from Best Buy last year; it is also available on amazon.
Use Disposable Kitchen Tools
I am obsessed with a few simple, inexpensive paper, plastic or recyclable material (mostly) kitchen helpers. These handy dandy tools considerably cut down my time cooking/cleaning or stressing in the kitchen.
- Non-stick Oven Liners. Spills don’t bother me. If pie filling drips and starts smoking, this liner catches it all. I can either wash it or toss it. I am never without a liner in both ovens.
- Disposable Cutting Board. I am literally chopping something all the time. This plastic cutting board is my new kitchen BFF. I haven’t pulled out my real cutting board much if any since using this. I love tossing this (especially after raw meat) rather than washing, drying, and putting away a heavy cutting board.
Relax, Read (or Listen) and Laugh
Holidays (or any time of year) can be stressful, and sometimes we have to work hard to relax. Read. Go to lunch with a friend. Laugh. I’ve been scrolling past some of my self-help podcasts and audible books lately for some soul-warming options. You can find these books, along with some other faves, in my amazon store.
- Nobody’s Cuter Than You: A Memoir About the Beauty of Friendship. This book is precious, and it is the perfect gift to give a friend. Melanie’s take on friendships in the seasons of life especially touched me. The older I get, the more I value my friends. Give this book a read or listen on audible.
- Giddy Up, Eunice: Because Women Need Each Other. When I tell you that Sophie Hudson is the real deal, I am not kidding. Having known her for years, I can attest that “as she write-eth, so is she.” In other words, she is every bit as engaging, kind, humorous and quick-witted in person as she appears in her books. This is my fave of her collection, and I just pre-ordered Stand All the Way Up: Stories of Staying In It When You Want to Burn It All Down. #cantWAITforthis
- The Big Boo Cast. To get a double dose of laughter (sprinkled with real life struggles and hilarious takes on the mundane), I love listening to Melanie Shankle and Sophie Hudson on this fabulous podcast. Their authentic banter and engaging commentary is next level. Listening to even a few minutes of them makes my heart merry:-)
I hope these tips are helpful in making your life easier, better or more merry in some way. As always, thanks so much for stopping by. Wishing you a joyful, blessed, and savvy day!!!