Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Getting Pregnant on a Budget!

Perhaps the title of this article “Getting Pregnant on a Budget!” has got you smirking a bit. After all, the materials needed to get pregnant were free the last time I checked.

But as mom to five little kids (and five different pregnancies), I know first hand how expensive it can be! Pregnancy tests can cost their weight in gold, prenatal vitamins - a small fortune and how-to books – a king’s ransom! After paying full price *gasp* with my first pregnancy, I vowed never to pay full price ever again. And I was true to my word.

So, if you are the number crunching type that uses the little calculator built-in to your phone, you should read on.

Prenatal Vitamin Secret: (Shhh) Doctors recommend that you take vitamins high in folate, such as prenatal vitamins, when you are trying to conceive. This greatly decreases the chance of neural tube defects in your unborn baby. But did you know that these giant pink pills are grossly expensive? So for the economical couple trying to get knocked up, try the generic store brand. It’s the identical vitamin, only half the price! That’s the secret.

Prediction Strips: If you or your spouse have the world’s longest cycle, (and I’m not talking bicycle built for two), you will need dozens of these puppies. And for the best value, you will not want to buy these from your local drug store. Read the pregnancy test section of this article to find a good place to buy ovulation prediction tests!

For the Scientific Type: If you are the scientific type who wants to bring out the big guns to pinpoint ovulation, why not set up a little fertility laboratory in your bedroom? After all, how fun is it to check saliva under a microscope to look for ferning patterns and predict ovulation! Heavy duty equipment like this is not cheap, so check Craigslist and your local classifieds for used equipment, and enjoy saving some money! Basal thermometers that measure body temperature should not be purchased in used condition, however these are inexpensive when purchased online.

How-to Books!: Let’s face it, sometimes we need a little instruction. A book like Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler is a treasure trove of knowledge. So is Sex for Dummies, hehe! And if you need some inspiration before you are locked in love’s embrace, try reading the latest Baby Names book. However, the local library will have all of these good books, without the price tag to go with it. Shy? Similar books can be found in free e-book format, just search the web.

Fertility Friend: Need help tracking and interpreting a cycle or cycles? Do you like tracking fertility online? Want to reach out to a community of experts? Try Fertility Friend for free charting. It’s a powerful tool, also available in iPhone apps for free. Good fun and entertainment for all prospective moms and daddies out there!

Pregnancy Test Bonanza!: For inquiring minds that want to know, those little two packs of pregnancy tests will end up costing you a fortune. Testing too early, testing multiple times per day, or having your cat test to make sure that the test is working right will quickly add up in cost. Therefore, I suggest buying pregnancy test strips in bulk on eBay. A pack of 30 will only run you $3 (including shipping), as opposed to the $12-$14 (not including tax) that you would pay for the little two pack. For $15 including shipping, 50 ovulation prediction strips can be purchased by the same method. You would spend $100+ to purchase an ovulation monitor at the pharmacy.

No matter how you put a bun in the oven, have fun and save your money, baby!

This article was written by me, Jenna Em, and appears in the June 27th issue of the Kuklamoo blog!
http://blog.kuklamoo.com/2012/06/27/getting-pregnant-on-a-budget/

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Stretching Your Dollar with Yard Sales!

As mom to 5 little gremlins aged 7 years and under, I have to stretch my dollar and make every cent count. Keeping up with the basics like shoes and clothes is a high wire act in itself, but add in the latest toys and kids’ books and I have to be a money magician!

That is why I shop yard sales. Some may say “junk sales”, but I beg to differ. Yard sales are a great way to buy kids’ items for just a fraction of the original cost. And if you look properly you can find brand new items, or those in like new condition!

What kinds of prices, you may ask? I regularly pay $1 to $5 for new, sealed board games and gifts; 25¢ to $2 per piece for kids’ clothing; 25¢ to 50¢ for books; $2 to $5 for playsets and ride-on toys; $5 for complete videogame systems, and $20 for a double stroller. Yes, I even bought a smooth top range for my kitchen at only $25, and my family uses it daily! (The same one was $500 on Kijiji!)

Here are some tips to help you make the most of yard sales and really S-T-R-E-T-C-H your dollar:

Map It! – Find yard sales in your area by checking the garage sale section of Craigslist or your local paper. There is even a FREE iPhone app called Yard Sale Mapper that will help you locate sales near you! If you are low-tech, drive around and look for yard sale signs posted at intersections in your area.

The Early Bird Catches the Worm! – Yard sales are the most plentiful on Saturdays in the warmer months, from 8:00 am to 12:00 pm. Come right when the sale opens to have first pick of the best loot. The early bird catches the worm!

Location, Location, Location! – Shop yard sales in affluent areas for the best quality and most expensive items. It is simple math: families that have more money to spend, also discard the best stuff.
Take 5? – Don’t be afraid to haggle on prices at yard sales, as cost is definitely not set in stone. Remember: most sellers are trying to get rid of the items at their sale, and don’t want to bring stuff back into the house. Therefore, offers are always welcome at yard sales. So, will you take $5?

Fun is My Middle Name! – Don’t forget to have fun! Discovering hidden treasures at yard sales is an exhilarating experience! Make it into a family event, and the kids will be delighted to discover their own treasures too! And your pocketbook will approve.

This article was written by me, Jenna Em, and appears in the June 20th issue of the Kuklamoo blog! http://blog.kuklamoo.com/2012/06/20/stretching-your-dollar-with-yard-sales/

Friday, June 15, 2012

Congratulations SnyMed Contest!



SnyMed has reached 1000+ followers on Twitter! WOOHOO! To celebrate, we are holding the "Congratulations SnyMed Contest"! Rules are simple, congratulate SnyMed on 1000 followers in a creative way & submit it.  The best three submissions will be selected to win prizes!  Available prizes will be Sony Entertainment prize packs or a gift card, depending on availability.

Need inspiration?  SnyMed tweets giveaways, contests, freebies, deals and more!  Our logo is the viking pig with the free pricetag.
Contest open to Canadian & US residents. Submission period up until Friday June 29th at 12:00am EST.  Winners will be announced the week of  July 2nd!

More details:  Submissions can be photos, art, collages, poems, a YouTube video, a Pinterest pin or whatever you think of!  Submission can be ultra simple, or super elaborate.

Post the submission on Twitter, Facebook, Google +, YouTube, Pinterest, or another social media. Post the link in comments below, tweet it to @SnyMed (Twitter) or e-mail snymed1@gmail.com .  Videos must be posted on YouTube or a similar service and not e-mailed :)  SnyMed will post submissions on Twitter & on this blog as received.  Winning entries will be exhibited in the same way.  No nudity or profanity, thank you!

So what are you waiting for?  Say Congratulations SnyMed!

Friday, June 08, 2012

Zwap Canada Twitter Party Thurs June 14th @8:00pm EST!

Join the Zwap Canada Twitter Party (co-hosted by SnyMed) for lots of fun and the chance to win great prizes! (All are welcome, but prizing is only open to Canadians.) We will be discussing Zwap Canada, savings, deals, coupons and freebies in Canada, as well as Father's Day. Party date is Thursday June 14th, 2012 from 8:00 - 9:30pm EST.

How to Attend the Zwap Canada Twitter Party:

1.RSVP to the party below with the Linky Tool (use your @Twitter name in the 1st line).
2.Follow @Zwap_Canada (host) & @SnyMed (co-host). Please also follow our sponsors.
3.All tweets should be tagged #Zwap (to show up on the party grid & to win prizes).
4.IMPORTANT: Respond to party questions using format Q1, Q2, Q3, etc.
5.(Optional) Please sign up with www.zwap.com before the party.

Prizes:
CheeCha Puffs Prize Pack from @CheeChaPuff, $100
Canadian Tire Gift Card $50
Home Depot Gift Card, $25
Best Buy Gift Card, $20 (just added)
Tim Hortons Gift Card (1 of 2), $15 
Tim Hortons Gift Card (2 of 2), $10
Shopper's Drugmart Gift Card from @LavishDream hair extensions, $10
Golf Shirt from @CoolCanuckCorp, $70
Organic Natural Beauty Prize Pack from @97NaturalBeauty, $65
Zax's Bruise Cream Combo Pack @ZaxHealth, $45
Naked Boxer Briefs from @NakedUnderwear, $36
Game of Thrones Tee from @RockWorldEast, $20

RSVP with @Twitter name below via the Linky tool (ie: @SnyMed).  1st line put @Twitter name, 2nd line put ANY url such as twitter url, blog address, or website (ie: www.twitter.com/snymed), lastly put your e-mail address for prizing.
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