Archive for July, 2013

Inexpensive Star Wars Birthday

This summer both of my girls had a birthday, and we celebrated by having a Mega Star Wars Birthday Blowout. Here are some of the ideas we used (mostly from Pinterest) in case you’re interested in having an inexpensive Star Wars birthday too!

First, you need to have a brother-in-law who will give your kids light sabers and dress up like a Storm Trooper. Sorry, can’t help you there 🙂


I found some $0.50 earmuffs at Michael’s, cut up an old brown sweater, got out my glue gun, and bought a bunch of brown yarn. It was time-consuming, but the Leia Buns Headbands were a big hit!


Cleverly-titled food tastes better. Everyone knows it’s true.


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A Darth Vader pinata isn’t incredibly cheap, but I think it was worth it for the amount of fun the kids had!


Unrelated to the topic: instead of birthday presents each year my girls ask their guests to bring food for the food bank. It’s an idea I wish would catch on in popularity. My girls get PLENTY of presents from family, and this is a great way to teach them to give back! They come with me to deliver the items, and it really leads to some good discussions.


Add comment July 27, 2013

Birthday Freebies!

My birthday is this weekend, and I’ve been enjoying all the freebies and offers I’ve received via mail and email. I though this would be a good time to post my updated birthday freebies list!

Here are some of the great free things my family and I received for our birthdays this summer. If any of these goodies interest you, be sure to go to the company’s website and sign up for their loyalty program or email list.


We usually celebrate birthdays by enjoying a free dessert at Aubrey’s, no coupon required.

Here are some of the other coupons we received by email to use anytime in celebration of our birthdays. Remember, unless noted, you do have to sign up ahead of time. You can’t always just show your driver’s license.

Free entree from Hot Rods 50s Diner in Alcoa.

Free waffle at Waffle House

Free Brownie Sundae at Chili’s

Free Rooty Tooty Fresh ‘n Fruity meal at IHOP

Free ice cream from Baskin Robbins

Free Cream Slush from Sonic for my husband and me

Free Wacky Pack Kid’s Meal for our kids

Free drink from Starbucks (automatically added to your Starbucks Rewards card; you have to register a gift card with their My Starbucks Rewards program ahead of time)

Free appetizer from Texas Roadhouse

Free Zaxby’s Nibbler sandwich for the grownups and a free kid’s meal for your children

Free item from Marble Slab Creamery.

$5/5 purchase at McAlister’s Deli


Free Redbox movie rental

Free perfume from the Aveda Pure Privilege program.

$30 off a $30 purchase at the Ann Taylor Loft outlet, courtesy of the Tanger Rewards program, which I’ve belonged to for four years now. You’ll receive a $10 gift certificate during your first year in the Tanger Rewards program.

50 free Swagbucks (search engine rewards program).

A 15 percent off coupon from American Eagle

100 Disney Movie Rewards points

Sign your kids up for Geoffrey’s Birthday Club and Toys R Us will send you a special coupon on their birthdays.

20 percent off coupon from Hallmark Crown Rewards.

So, happy birthday to you, whenever it may be! Go ahead and sign up for the rewards I’ve mentioned, and you’re sure to have a fun, frugal, coupon-filled birthday.

Do you know of any local birthday freebies I’ve missed? Please let me know by commenting on this article!

Add comment July 27, 2013

Free nursing covers with promo code

Here’s some info my friend Katie sent me on a free nursing cover deal! Thanks Katie!



Use Promo Code “BREASTFEEDING2013” at TODAY!

It’s as easy as 1-2-3!

  1. Go to
  2. Click on “Shop Now” and select any nursing cover you like.
  3. Once you have made your selection, you’ll automatically be directed to the shopping bag. Enter the promo code “BREASTFEEDING2013” and we will deduct 100% off the cost of the cover – all you pay is the shipping, processing /service fees!
Remember: the promo code is “BREASTFEEDING2013” and you can use it more than once – just open a new browser window each time you do.

Add comment July 27, 2013

Review and giveaway – The Magic School Bus: Revving Up and In a Pickle

UPDATE: The giveaway winners are #81 Nancy and #129 Laurie B. Thanks to all who entered!

One of my kids’ favorite series is The Magic School Bus. I love how they learn SO much about science while watching this show. The cartoons are presented in such a engaging format that my girls now associate science with fun! I like this series so much that a friend and I have even spent the summer teaching Magic School Bus-themed classes to school-aged kids. (Did you know you can download free activities and worksheets to go along with each episode here?)

Lately, we have been enjoying a couple of new DVDs that will be released at the end of the month.

The first is called The Magic School Bus: Revving Up. This 3-DVD set retails for $24.95, but Amazon is having a special sale right now where you can pre-order for $16.99. It contains twelve episodes of the series that cover topics like energy, habitat and sound (approx. 5 hours) and will be released July 30. Here’s the official description:

Hop on board the magical, transformable bus with 12 Friz-tastic episodes! Seatbelts everyone! Sparks of discovery fly with this 3-DVD set containing over five hours of the Emmy Award-winning animated science-adventure series based on the bestselling books.

Revving Up — Topic: Engines
Under Construction — Topic: Structures
Gets Programmed — Topic: Computers
Bonus: Hops Home — Topic: Habitat

Getting Energized — Topic: Energy
Gets Charged — Topic: Electricity
A Bright Idea — Topic: Light
Bonus: In The Haunted House — Topic: Sound

In The City — Topic: City Critters
Cracks a Yolk — Topic: Eggs
All Dried Up — Topic: Desert Adaptation
Bonus: Ants in Its Pants — Topic: Ants

We have been doing projects themed around the episodes. For example, after watching “Under Construction” we made structures from marshmallows, spaghetti noodles, and sugar cubes!

The second DVD we’ve been enjoying is called Magic School Bus: In a Pickle. This DVD contains four episodes themed around microbes and molecules, and runs for approx 78 minutes + extras. It retails for $12.95 and will also be released on July 30, but you can pre-order on Amazon for $8.99.

Here’s the official description:

Ever wonder what’s behind a peculiar smell? Viewers who hop aboard the bus for IN A PICKLE are sure to find out across four never-before-released episodes including the title episode about microbes, along with  “Meets Molly Cule,” “Makes a Stink” about smell and “Meets the Rot Squad” which covers decomposition.

There are all kinds of fun experiments you can do to go along with these episodes; our favorite that we’ve done is a smell-testing game using essential oils and cotton balls.

Would you like to win a copy of The Magic School Bus: Revving Up or The Magic School Bus: In a Pickle? Scholastic will be giving one of these DVDs to two Thrifty Christy readers! Here’s how to enter to win:

Required Entry:

To enter to win, just leave a comment below letting me which of the above DVDs you’d choose if you win. That’s it! (If you’re reading this on Facebook/Twitter hop on over to to leave your comment.)

Additional Optional Entries:

You can do each of the following things for an additional entry in the giveaway. You can only do each of these once, for a possible total of 6 entries.

Please leave a separate comment for each method of entry. If you only leave one comment then you only have one entry, as each comment is numbered and I randomly choose a number. Make sense?

This giveaway ends at midnight EST on Thursday August 1. I will choose two winners (one for each title) on Friday August 2 using and will contact them via email. Winners will choose their DVD in the order in which they are selected.

Thanks to New Kideo (the children’s division of New Video Productions) and Scholastic for providing the DVDs for this review and giveaway. All opinions in this review are solely my own. Giveaway open to US readers only.

156 comments July 27, 2013

TN Sales Tax Holiday is August 2-4

Tennessee’s Sales Tax Holiday will be August 2-4. You won’t have to pay tax on clothing and school supply purchases of $100 or less, or computer purchases of $1500 or less. Here’s the official website with all of the info.

Add comment July 22, 2013

Free tea day at McAlister’s is July 25

Free tea day at McAlister’s Deli will be July 25! Mark your calendars!

Add comment July 22, 2013

Book review and Kindle sale: Rosemary Cottage, by Colleen Coble

I recently had the chance to read Rosemary Cottage, by Colleen Coble. This fiction book was released July 9, 2013 by Thomas Nelson.

About this book (from the back cover):

The charming Rosemary Cottage on the beach offers Amy Lange respite she needs to mourn her brother, Ben. She’s even thinking of moving her midwife practice to the Outer Banks community. It’s always been a refuge for her and her family. She also wants to investigate Ben’s disappearance at sea. Everyone blames a surfing accident, but Amy has reason to wonder. Coast Guard officer Curtis Ireland has lost a sibling too. His sister, Gina, was run down by a boat, leaving him to raise her infant daughter. If anyone knew who little Raine’s father was, Curtis could lose his beloved niece. Yet he can’t help being drawn to Hope Beach’s new midwife, Amy. He even agrees to help her investigate what happened to both Ben and Gina. Can two grieving people with secrets find healing on beautiful Hope Island? Or will their quest for truth set them at odds with each other…and with those who will go to any length to keep hidden things hidden?

My Verdict:

Rosemary Cottage is a great summer beach book. It’s a love story and a mystery, and I was surprised that I didn’t guess the ending correctly, which is always fun! I enjoyed the characters of Ben and Gina, and although this is book two in a series, I didn’t realize that until I was done reading it, so it stands alone as a novel. I’ve been a fan of Coble’s previous books in the Lightkeeper’s Daughter series, and this more modern series is just as good if not even better! I definitely recommend this book for some light summer beach reading.

If you’d like to check out Rosemary Cottage it is currently on sale for $8.63 for the Kindle version right now, which is 46% off. (Regularly $15.99.) If you prefer a physical copy the paperback  version is currently on sale for $11.07. Remember, Amazon’s prices can change at any time.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze® book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Add comment July 22, 2013

Win early shopping passes to the Fairview UMC consignment sale July 19-20

Fairview United Methodist Church is having its annual Children’s Consignment Event Saturday July 20, and you’ll definitely want to make plans to be there. The sale starts at 8 a.m. and closes at noon for an hour. At 1 p.m. they reopen and everything without a red dot is on sale for half price. Sale items include clothing for all seasons for newborn to children’s size 16; all things for baby–furniture, strollers, pack-n-plays, etc., costumes, sports equipment, toys, puzzles, books, DVDs and gaming systems.

For more information, call the church office at 865-983-2080.

I am excited to be able to give away two passes for you and a friend to shop early on Friday July 19! (Of course, if you choose to consign you’ll shop early as well!)

This giveaway is going to take place via Facebook, so head to the Thrifty Christy Facebook page and look for the above flyer to participate!

This giveaway will end on Friday July 12 at midnight EST. Winners will be announced Saturday July 13 via Facebook.

Add comment July 4, 2013

Free coconut oil, today only!

Today only, Tropical Traditions is offering a free jar of their Gold Label Coconut Oil with any $16+ purchase. I’d recommend getting some of the Antioxidant Greens, which are also on sale – that’s what I’m ordering today!

Disclosure: If you order by clicking on any of my links and have never ordered from Tropical Traditions in the past, you will receive a free book on Virgin Coconut Oil, and I will receive a discount coupon for referring you.

Add comment July 4, 2013

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