I usually make coffee at home. My husband and I LOVE our Trader Joe’s Organic Wake Up Blend Coffee. It happens to be the best price for organic coffee that we have found (with the exception of Whole Foods Organic Pacific Blend), and it is the very best tasting coffee we’ve had. So, that works for us. On rare occasion, I do make a stop at a coffee shop. When I do, it is usually Starbucks. It’s always a reminder of how expensive coffee can be. Did you know, however, that you can save money even when you do make your occasional Starbucks stop?
Here are a few ways to save money at Starbucks.
1. Order chai tea instead of a chai tea latte. Then, when you get your drink, add your own milk in the condiment section. Then, you’ve just saved $1.20 by just “making” your own chai tea latte!
2. Get the app. Did you know that Starbucks has an app? If you download the Starbucks app, you can get a free drink every time you buy twelve.
3. Ask for a larger cup. If you usually order a tall, ask for a tall drink in a grande cup… or a grande drink in a venti cup. Then, head over to that condiment bar and fix up your drink. My husband does that because he wants to make sure that there’s enough room for the amount of milk he prefers. You can save $1.20 by doing this.
4. Ask for “light ice” in your cold drinks. Have you ever seen how much ice goes into an iced vanilla latte? The entire cup is full of ice! Requesting “light ice” in your drink is like doubling the size of your drink. Get more drink for your dollar!
How do you save money when you go out for coffee?
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Years ago, when I was a member of a gym, I used to joke that the gym would finally be back to normal in March. We all know why. Those who had “resolved” to get fit got discouraged, didn’t see all the weight loss or fit-ness happen fast enough, or just gave up. Well, even if you are not a member of a gym, this is the time (if you did make a resolution) that your resolve, your motivation, your hope is tested. Don’t give up! Here are a few tips to help you maximize your weight loss in case you didn’t see the results you’d hoped for in the last two months.
1. Vary your workout. Be sure that whatever you consider your workouts include aerobic activity, strength training, and stretching. Cardio alone may not be sufficient for weight loss. Strength training builds muscle, and more muscle translates into better metabolism. So, be sure you’re working on building your strength at least twice a week. If you do the same workout every day, change it. Add weights. Increase weights. Add time. Add intensity. Do interval training. All those changes will change your workout, strengthen your muscles, and improve your ability to lose weight.
2. Watch those extra calories. Sometimes when we work out, we give ourselves the liberty to indulge more than we would when we are not working out. There’s not much room for indulging if you are trying to lose weight. If you want something special, then be sure to cut the equivalent number of calories elsewhere.
3. Exercise is not just what happens at the gym. Be careful not to let yourself get lazy the rest of the day. Let your workout time inspire you to keep moving. If you slow down from your normal pace, you may also cut the number of total calories you’d normally burn on any given day. So, take the stairs and park a little farther. The more you move, the more calories you’ll burn.
How do you maximize your workouts?
Kids. They cost a lot of money. As parents that isn’t something we just accept. In fact many of us live the thrifty life to give them the things we feel they need. We embrace it knowing the more effort we put into our children the better future they may have. We sign them up for many different classes and fun activities. We have a membership to every museum, zoo, and aquarium in a thirty mile radius. But is spending more money a needed part of that effort?
I Just Like My Kids
Before we get on to the other reasons we may spend to much on our children, lets talk about the best reason. We like our children. We want to see them happy. We want them to have good opportunities and great learning experiences. So we need to ask ourselves if the purchases we make are giving them that? Are we repeating the same opportunities in different purchases? Or, if the purchase is in entertainment form, like a movie, will they be just as happy watching it on Netflix with us when it doesn’t cost twenty five dollars to watch.
We can give our children the things we want them to have, but we can also do it through delayed gratification or on a smaller scale.
What I Never Had
We want to make sure our kids have some of the things we didn’t have growing up. It’s the reason why eighties and nineties toys are making such a huge come back. We are literally getting our children the commercial toys we coveted at a young age. We need to ask ourselves if our child truly wants this toy or is it something that we have always dreamed of having? Are we living through our children vicariously?
It’s okay to get toys for our children, and it’s even okay to get toys for ourselves. We just need to make sure we don’t go overboard and we know who the purchase is actually for.
Children have a way of getting to us through the power of whining. They whine and we may, from time to time, cave just to make the whining stop. Yes, five more minutes before bed time. No, they don’t have to eat ALL their vegetables. In stores purchases may be made for the same reason. A quick surrender so there is no in-store tantrum.
Let them have the tantrum. Then still don’t give them the candy bar or toy. Take a deep breath and remind yourself this is part of the growing process for you as well and them. If other people give you a hard time invite them to babysit. They may be full of advice, but chances are the application of said advice may be about as easy for them as it is for you.
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