Product Reviews

Our sock monkey hiding for a new round!

This sponsored post was written by me on behalf of Lakeside Collection. Regardless of compensation, all opinions are 100% my own.

My mom has always been a huge fan of Lakeside Collection, so I knew it was a great place to buy houseware and home decor at a very reasonable price. But, I always went to visit their site with a purpose in mind. I never really stopped and took the time to browse, like my mom always did.

When they recently asked me to review some of their products, my daughter and I took the time together to browse the Lakeside Collection website and I was surprised to find how many different products they offer. They really have something for every room and everyone in your home.

Daelan (2 1/2) not peeking (or so he says) while his sister hides the sock monkey.

Our absolutely favorite has to be the Where is Sock Monkey? game (it’s only $6.95 on sale right now!) We love board games, so Family Game Night is a hit in our home, but it’s a struggle to involve our rather rambunctious 2 1/2 year old. Even though Where is the Sock Monkey? says ages 3 and up, we found that Daelan could play. It’s tough to say who was more excited – us or him!

Daelan reading his card.

First, someone hides the sock monkey, then each player takes turns drawing cards with pictures on them, asking questions like, “Is the sock monkey in a room with a couch?” Since Daelan knew most of the pictures, he could read his own cards! Eventually, you’ll draw a card that says “Go look!” and that player has to go look for the sock monkey. You only have so many chances to hunt down the sock monkey or the person who hid it wins the round and the game continues.

She found it!

Since everyone gets to get up and move around the house, it’s an active game and it goes fast enough to keep even the littlest player entertained.

Elmo & Cookie Monster Beach Towels: $11.95 on Sale Now!

 

But, Lakeside Collection has much more to entertain my kids, like Elmo and Cookie Monster beach towels. Our 7-year-old has outgrown most of our fun kid-size towels, since she’s tall for her age, but I can tell she’s a bit disappointed when her brothers and sisters still use them. These towels are the right size for an adult to take the beach, but cute enough that my toddler isn’t waiting for warm weather to use them. Instead, he’s been sleeping with the Elmo beach towel like it’s a blanket since it arrived.

Of course, you’ll still find some beautiful and affordable stuff to decorate and organize your home, but please take the time to look around. I bet you’ll be shocked to see all the offer and the prices as well!

Another thing I love about Lakeside Collection is that I find many things I never really thought about, but they are so sensible, like Taco Stands (only $6.95 for 8). Every time we make tacos, my kids end up spilling them and they make a mess before we even dig in, but these keep them sitting up on your plate.

Or check out the 10-pair of mix and match socks at only $8.95, which look so much like something you’d find at Little Miss Match, but at a lot better price!

Mixing up the cards for a new game.

And, if you have little ones who love games, make sure to add the Where is the Sock Monkey Game? to your cart! Did you see me say that it’s only $6.95 on sale right now?

This post was sponsored by Lakeside Collection. I did receive products for review and compensation for my time in writing and promoting this review. For more information, please read our terms & conditions and disclosure policy.

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Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympics for Wii

This sponsored post was written by me on behalf of Lunchbox. Regardless of compensation, all opinions are 100% my own.

Last night was family game night for our family.  It’s a frugal way to spend time as a family and have fun.

We have family game night a lot, and sitting at a table playing board games is always fun.  But, being active is so much  more fun! We love challenging each other in games where we can jump around and look a little silly.  Plus, there’s something about being active that makes you even more motivated and gets the game even crazier.  And, it tends to get you hyped up enough to add some well-meaning smack talk, which in our family results in laughter.

I’ve always been a Nintendo fan and love the kid-friendly games that don’t involve severed body parts, blood, and other unmentionables found in so many video games.  Mario and Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games is definitely one of those!  That was our game of choice last night.

If you need a last-minute gift idea, we love this game.  It’s one of this year’s hottest games and Sam’s Club has Mario and Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games in stock in store and ready for pick up for your Nintendo Wii.

About Mario and Sonic at 2012 Olympic Games

Choose from your favorite Nintendo characters, like Sonic, Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, Donkey Kong, Knuckles, and many others, then try your hand at winning the 2012 London Olympics!  You can play Party Mode, Multiplayer Mode or single -player Story Mode and visit tons of favorite famous landmarks.

Try your hand at your favorite Olympic games and a few made up ones as well:

  • Long Jump
  • Synchronized Swimming
  • Rhythmic Ribbon Dancing
  • Trampoline
  • Uneven Bars
  • Canoeing
  • Soccer
  • Beach Volleyball
  • Dream Spacewalk
  • 1oo-Meter Sprint
  • And More!

It even had games my little “I can’t be a boy character or do boy things” girl was willing to play, which makes our family game nights so much easier.  I mean, look at the screen shot above.  No part of that screams “this is a boys-only game”, so she plays along.

Buy it Now!

You can pick up Mario and Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games for your Nintendo Wii at your local Sam’s Club in store only.  Stock may vary by store, so call ahead to make sure they are still available at your local Sam’s Club.

Sponsored by Lunchbox and conducted by In Good Cents.  Regardless of compensation, all opinions are 100% my own.   For more information, please read our terms & conditions and disclosure policy.

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This sponsored post was written by me on behalf of eCampus.com. Regardless of compensation, all opinions are 100% my own.

At college, I always bought used books at a store on the Ball State Campus.  I compared prices between the two local book stores and made sure to go early to get my books at the lowest possible price.  I thought I was being so frugal.

I don’t have kids in college yet, but I clearly remember the shock I felt when I saw that college textbooks were a lot more than any other book I’d ever bought in my entire life.  So, when my kids hit college, I don’t even want to image what that price will be!

A lot of bookstores, even those on campus, offer different options to help you save – buy new, buy used, rent new, or rent used.  So, you’d think that you’d get the best price right there, locally.  At least, that’s what I assumed.

When eCampus asked me to write a bit about saving money with services that let students rent college textbooks online, I was skeptical to be honest.  But, I tested it out by searching for books for a few basic classes and compared the prices at the bookstore I shopped at Ball State University to eCampus.

The truth was painful – I wasn’t so frugal after all.

Book Local Bookstore Price* eCampus Price
Infant, Children, and Adolescents
by Laura E. Berk
$70.25 Rental $65.10 Rental
Pathway to Astronomy
by Schneider
$61.85 Rental $58.24 Rental
World Regional Geography
by Douglas L. Johnson, etc…
$67.90-$123.50 Rental $40.74 Rental
The American Democracy
by Patterson
Not available for rental.
$114.75 Used
$153.00 New
$64.23 Rental
Essentials of Contemporary Management
by Gareth R. Jones
Not available for rental.
$92.80 Used
$123.75 New
$34.47 Rental
Management: Meeting + Exceeding Customer Expectations
by Warren R. Plunkett
Not available for rental.
$144.55 Used
$192.75 New
$77.23 Rental

Can you believe some of those price differences? And it seemed, at least for me, that the more advanced the courses got the more expensive the books were.  Especially, since most of those books weren’t available to rent or sometimes even used. But, on eCampus.com, it seemed the exact opposite for the books I searched.  Many that I would have to buy at the local bookstore, I could simply rent on eCampus for a fraction of the price.

Then there’s the end of the year.  I would always rush to sell my books to get money back, but sometimes those books weren’t being used again and they bookstore wouldn’t buy them.  I’d be stuck with a book, I’d probably never open again.  But, with eCampus, you aren’t stuck with books at the end of the year ever!  They always go back.  But, if you really want to sell used textbooks, you can do that on eCampus too!

Oh, and did I mention that shippings is FREE for all purchases of $59 or more? That’s about the costs of one college textbook, so it won’t be hard to hit that minimum.

What’s the most expensive textbook you bought in college?  Can you remember?

Sponsored by eCampus.com and conducted by In Good Cents. For more information, please read our terms & conditions and disclosure policy.
*Prices compared to T.I.S. College Bookstore on Ball State University Campus.

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Hottest Sony Gifts + The X Factor Sweepstakes

by Beth Montgomery on November 26, 2011

in Contests,

This sponsored post was written by me on behalf of Lunchbox. Regardless of compensation, all opinions are 100% my own.

Electronics are always high on everyone’s list for the holiday season – computers, televisions, mobiles phones, game systems, tablets, and portable music players.  The best “toys” are always the most expensive it seems.

Walmart has partnered with Sony this year to provide the latest technological toys as reasonable prices, plus provide you with a chance to win a trip to The X Factor grand finale or one of many other Sony prizes in the The X Factor Sweepstakes.

Ready for a low down on the hottest Sony items on many wish lists this year?

Sony® Tablet S

When you’re narrowing down your list, do you get a e-Reader, laptop, portable music player, or game system?  How about all in one?

Sony® Tablet S (pictured above) is a tablet with so many great features – access Playsation games, read ebooks, listen to music, and watch movies not only on the go, but in the palm of your hand!

Even I’m secretly longing for a tablet this year!

Average retail value: $499.99

Sony® VAIO S Series Notebook PC

What’s the point of a portable computer if it’s too large to carry with you?  The Sony® VAIO S Series Notebook PC  is under 1 inch thick and with a 15.5 inch screen, numeric keypad, and full HD 1080P display.  Weighing only 4.2 pounds, it’s light for a notebook that packs some powerful technology to view movies and media on the go!

Sony® MDR-ZX701P Headphones

Finding a great pair of headphones can be difficult!  There’s features, sound quality, fit, and so comfort to consider. The Sony® MDR-ZX701P Headphones are packed full of features with an in-line remote that lets you control your iPod, iPhone, or iPad music library, skip tracks, and change the volume, as well as answer calls.

Plus, if you’re into technology, they are outfitted with 50mm units and high-energy neodymium magnets for a great sound and wide dynamic frequency response.

Average retail value: $149.99

Sony Speaker dock for iPod and iPhone ICF-CS15IP

Turn your iPod or iPhone into an alarm clock to wake to your favorite tunes with the Sony Speaker dock for iPod and iPhone ICF-CS15IP.  Not only will it get you moving in the morning, it will also let you blast your tunes throughout the day to keep you moving!

Any hot electronics on your holiday wish list this year?

Sponsored by Lunchbox and conducted by In Good Cents. For more information, please read our terms & conditions and disclosure policy.

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