Easy Rice Sensory Bin

Move over fidget spinner.  It’s time for a quick DIY sensory bin that has passed the test of time.  It’s time for a quick and easy rice sensory bin.  I spent some time with hubby and my son making 30 bins, one for each classroom.  We used 50 lbs of rice which I bought from the Asian store.  I highly recommend that if you are doing class sets, get at least another 50 lb bag.

  1. Throw rice into a bin.  The bin will need a secure cover for when you are done playing.  I LOVE these cheap less than $2 bins I got from my local Walmart.

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2. Add some optional color such as a beads.  Varying sizes will make great textures.  I got a large bin of these for a few days from the thrift store.

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3. Play!  Xhaun is an expert at playing with a rice bin within seconds.

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$20 Starbucks Gift Card for $10

sbThe school year has officially began so that also means a new open season of coffee drinking and meeting.  I just bought a $20 Starbucks gift card for half the cost at $10.

This extra goodness basically means an extra Caramel Frappuccino right before an IEP meeting or a surprise drink for someone else.  I usually like to pay for the drink of the person behind my car since it means I can provide  good karma and contribute to the idea that karma is not always a bitch.

I received an email and it linked said to go here: Starbucks link and be on your way to drinking a little more happiness.

You must have Visa checkout in order to get the deal.  If you are not already a member like I am, you should sign up because they offer a secure way to shop online without giving vendors your Visa card number.  There are also other nifty deals offered at different times throughout the year as well that’s just as good as this Starbuck’s coffee lover’s dream.

 

Creepy? Amazon.com took a Picture of My House

Yesterday, I blogged about how I love Amazon Prime.  I can easily shop online and get what I need within 2-3 days.  When my package came in late, I was able to get an extension on my Prime membership.  Check out yesterday’s blog here.

Today, I wanted to keep on the same subject of Amazon because when I went to check online on progress of my delivery, I saw this:

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In a way I wasn’t shocked.  When we first moved into our home, our maillady told us that she saw an open box with our information on it about two blocks down.  Hubby found it and brought the torn and empty box back.  Someone had stolen the goodies for my not yet born baby.  Oh, how I wished we had a camera set up so I could catch the person who would be so bold as to steal from someone who had not yet lived a day outside my womb.

Fast forward to now, we have security cameras set up.  And so has Amazon.  In a way, I appreciate how Amazon has taken steps to secure my package arrives safely with documented proof.  But I’m not sure if everyone would be excited about this.  Amazon is aware of this and as shown in the screenshot above, there is a “Don’t take delivery photos” opt out button.

According to an article on May 22, 2015, from Dailymail.com, which is a UK site, people felt Amazon was invading their privacy.

20 days ago, someone posted on Reddit.com that he also received a photo delivery as proof.  Another Reddit user confirmed that the Amazon app for delivery was updated 3 weeks previously to include taking a pic.

Here is Amazon’s policy on it:

About AMZL Photo on Delivery

Amazon Logistics (AMZL) may take a photo on delivery when a package is left unattended. The photo will focus on the placement of the package. This is to help customers see that their package was safely delivered and where. If a photo on delivery is captured, it may show up when you track a package from Your Orders.

Accessing a delivery photo requires signing in with your user name and password on the Amazon website. Customer Service may look at delivery photos to troubleshoot what happened to a package if you contact us or report a problem with the photo. The photos may also be audited for quality purposes.

For orders shipped to an address marked confidential, such as a Wish List or Registry address, Amazon won’t post a delivery photo on the order in order to protect the privacy of the recipient.

Remember that baby package that was stolen from our house I spoke about earlier?  Amazing Amazon replaced all the items they could and the ones they could not were refunded.

What do you think?  Do you also think Amazon’s photo delivery proof is a sign of good business?

How You can Extend Your Amazon Prime Membership for FREE in only 5 Minutes

I love shopping from home so it’s easy to fall in love with Amazon Prime.  I first heard how you can extend your Amazon Prime membership through Slickedeals.net for free if your package is late but had never tried it.
Today when my Amazon prime package arrived,  a day late and I thought I would give it a try. I got my Amazon prime membership extended by a month which means I will get in on prime when Cyber Monday comes around since I subscription ends Nov. 23rd and it has not been extended into the holiday period as Dec. 23rd. (Hello great buys.)

When you make an eligible prime purchase from Amazon, you will see that there’s a button noting their policy on guaranteed delivery date as shown below.

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Clicking the “details” link will send you here to explain their delivery guarantee policy.  Which states:

About Delivery Guarantees

We offer guaranteed delivery on certain fast delivery speeds and select products. When guaranteed delivery is available on an order, it will be clearly marked on the checkout page with an associated delivery date and fee (if applicable).

If we provide a guaranteed delivery date and a delivery attempt is not made by this date, we will refund any shipping fees associated with that order. To inquire about a refund, please contact us and click “An Order I Placed.” Select your order, then select Problem with an order > Shipping or delivery issues > Shipment is late.

 

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I simply followed the directions by contacting Amazon and opted to chat with a  representative.  Akshay, the Amazon rep was friendly and quick.  In only 5 minutes of my time, I was able to get a free month of prime. Sweet!

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5 Tips to Save over $300 on Your Next Mattress Purchase

SLEEP and SAVE

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I just saved a bunch of money on a new mattress.

Mattress shopping can be a bit overwhelming like that first house you are hunting for.  You want the perfect one but second guess yourself every step of the way.  You either totally miss all the signs that the house needs work or you read every sign as a sign from the heavens that this home is a must buy.

Well, congrats because you are reading this and you are about to keep more money in your pocket.  Buying a mattress really isn’t as hard of a commitment as you thought.  As a previous furniture sells person, I’m about to tell you 5 tips that will help you sleep better with more money in your pocket the next time you buy a mattress.  The price is always negotiable.  Don’t listen to the sales person who is insisting that it’s not.  Like a house or a car, the pricing is always negotiable.  Now that you know that the price of a mattress isn’t set in stone, let’s look at the top 5 ways you can save on your better sleep. First you need to ask for the “out the door” price.  This is the final price with all the works that you want including delivery, removal of old mattress set, frame, fees, and tax all included.  Then work at on these 5 discounts:

  1. Ask for No Tax.  Yes, this can get you a nice savings.  And relax, Uncle Sam will still get his share because the tax will be recalculated into the total purchase.
  2. Ask for Free Delivery.  Sometimes this fee can be anywhere from $20 to $100.
  3. Ask for Free Removal or Pick Up of Old Mattress Set. If you have an old mattress, make sure it’s getting picked up because Goodwill no longer will take mattresses and the cost to take your mattress to the dump cost you a fee plus a lot of heavy lifting effort.
  4. Ask for a 10% Discount.  Really here you can just ask for a discount.  It’s better to name your percentage off.
  5. Ask for Free Pillows, Mattress Pads, or Frame.  Nothing like a freebie.  These things can add up and if you can get them free, then more savings to you.

Remember that you should always be reasonable and friendly when negotiating.  If things don’t work out to your budget, don’t be afraid to ask for a written quote on a business card.  You can always shop around and find that happy medium. With extra savings in your pocket, you’ll sleep better than a baby on your new mattress.

 

 

 

I received over $230 from ebates!

I’m usually a skeptic but the commercials are true.  I received in my PayPal account over $230 from ebates.com doing one simple step.  Check out the proof:

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In less than 2 years I’ve accumulated $230.48 from ebates doing 1 simple and easy step: before I shop online, I click on the online store link from ebates and shop away.  It is that simple and yet over $200 magical.

Ebates has over 2000 plus stores to choose from online.  Some of my favorite online stores with cashback from ebates are Kohls, Macys, Groupon, eBay, and Walmart.  Once you click the store link, ebates will note your shopping transaction and total purchase and you will start accumulating money back.  Every store varies on what purchases you can get money back.  I’ve had 1% all the way to 12% cashback.

To help you get started, on your way to saving over $200 just like me, you can  click on my ebates.com referral,  or copy and paste:

https://www.ebates.com/r/DREAMS1196?eeid=28187

and give yourself a $10 headstart to savings.

Once you created an account, you can link your paypal to receive your ebate cashback there.

I have ebates saved as a toolbar icon on my internet page so that way, I can easily remember to click on it every time I shop.

Ebates also do these awesome bonuses where you can get rewarded for things like shopping at a particular store.  I received an easy $5 once just for making a $25 purchase at a store I was going to shop at anyways.

And watchout for the bonus cashback days.  That’s how I got 12% cashback on Macys.com.  Usually it only 3% but then these overly amazing double cashback rewards can get you twice or even more (like in the case of that one time I shopped at Macys.com) in money back.

Once you accumulate a minimum of $10 in their 3 month qualifying period, ebates will pay you out. But remember, you can’t earn unless you sign up.  Who knows, you could be earning more than me.  No scams here.

Don’t forget your $10 bonus by signing on with my referral link: https://www.ebates.com/r/DREAMS1196?eeid=28187.

What favorite store of yours do you see is on ebates.com?

Michael’s $4 Grab Bag Unveiled

micheal1It’s my second day this week of going to Michael’s and I gotta a feeling it’s not going to be my last since I have a reception cake to make.  So while I’m there, I had to get something for myself.  Since I LOVE surprises so I grabbed 2 $4 Grab Bags.  Below is what I got.  Not sure how much I love almost endless supply of feather earrings  but maybe next time I see Big Bird, I’ll give him his feathers back.  Hehe.  I love the grad ribbon since I will be graduating this year.  I’m a huge fan of the mini flag notes.  They are perfect for bookmarking that perfect quote from my favorite book.  One last thing to highlight is the wrapping paper.  I usually pick colorful wrapping but I dig this black and white floral wrap.

 

Here’s what I got in the second Bag Deal.

It’s another candle holder.  Another plaque sign.  The paper bows are cute.   I can’t wait to do something fun with these bags.  I’ve got some ideas brewing.  🙂

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Not every Michael’s arts and craft store has these awesome Grab Bag Deals.   Yesterday, I shopped at a different location and there were not bags to be found. If you find these bags, get them quick before someone else snags them.  Let me know you got in your bag.