Tips, advice, and the latest news from the savings world.
By Nichole L. Huff, M.S., CFLE, University of Kentucky
If your July was anything like mine, it was H-O-T! With record-breaking temperatures and near-daily heat advisories, finding inexpensive, indoor ways to entertain your kids during the summer months can prove challenging. As a mom of two little ones (four and two), I’ve tried to find economical and fun ways to keep my kids busy on those days when it’s just too hot to go outside.
With most schools out on summer break, it’s important to regularly provide your children with time to draw, color, paint, and create. Give a child a crayon and the possibilities are endless! August is a good time to buy art supplies because many discount retailers are running back-to-school specials. Take advantage of the sales by stocking your home with many simple craft supplies that cost as little as $.25 to $1.00 each! The basics? Crayons, markers, colored pencils, a watercolor paint set, finger paint (look for poster paint, which is usually a few dollars cheaper), safety scissors, glue sticks/school glue, construction paper, a coloring book, and drawing paper. For under $10, you can create an art kit that will keep your kids so entertained they’ll forget they are inside!
To supplement your store-bought supplies, look for items around the house to reuse and repurpose. Save empty toilet paper and paper towel rolls, magazines, empty milk cartons, and soda bottles. Find an old box to house your new art supplies, and let your kids’ first craft be to decorate it! Collect old buttons, ribbons, and fabric. Rinse and save your Popsicle sticks. Got extra cotton balls in the bathroom? Glue them to a piece of construction paper to make clouds (or better yet, let your kids make a winter snow scene on a hot summer day!).
by Jasmith Joseph, Illinois College Student
Being a college student is really hard. Having lots of expenses and a part-time minimum wage job doesn't really help much either. Things got especially tough for me when I broke my phone. I really needed to get another one and I had no choice but to save. I didn't have the over one hundred dollars to spend on the new smart phone I really wanted.
The first thing I decided to do was put aside ten dollars from every paycheck. I quickly discovered that this would take over five months for me to save enough! I needed to devise a better plan. I am great in English so I resolved to help my friends out in English for a small fee and I rented out my books to those who didn't have them. In about three weeks I managed to make $105. I added the $20 I had set aside from my paychecks and I had just enough to get the phone I wanted.