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Spinach Manicotti – Prepare Ahead Meals that Save Time

Prepare ahead meals like this Spinach Manicotti recipe make great weeknight meals. Prep the meal when you have time and pull it out of the freezer on those busy nights for a delicious family dinner!
Spinach ManicottiThis recipe for Spinach Manicotti was inspired by a collaboration with Newman’s Own Organics. All opinions are my own.

You know those nights that you are just so tired, so pressed for time, and just don’t feel like cooking a big family dinner? Those nights were made for prepare ahead meals. Sure, you have to plan ahead and do the preparation on a different day, but your prep day can be one when you’re not pressed for time.It’s so tempting on those busy weeknights to just head out and pick up something that you’ll regret feeding your family the next day. Instead, make a plan… and in your plan should be this Spinach Manicotti recipe, trust me.

Prepping this manicotti dish ahead of time means you have a healthy dinner ready for your family any time because it can be prepared and frozen for those busy nights. It’s actually one of those prepare ahead meals that does have to be prepped ahead because you’re relying on the sauce to soften the manicotti noodles. I always prepare the night before I plan on serving it, unless I’m planning to freeze.

While I prefer to stuff my manicotti with this mixture of ricotta and spinach, there are so many variations you could do with it. In fact, if you try something different in your noodles, please come back and tell me so I can try it too!

While my girls often turn up their noses at anything green [what happened to their willingness to eat veggies?!] they don’t even notice the spinach in this dish because… pasta, cheese, and bright red marinara sauce!

I love a delicious pasta dish that doesn’t require cooking the noodles and this is one of those kinds of dishes. After you stuff your manicotti noodles, place them in your baking dish covered in Newman’s Own Organics Marinara Sauce [or any flavor you choose] and let the sauce do the softening for you.

I choose to use Newman’s Own Organics Marinara Sauce in this recipe for a few reasons. The first, aside from the fact that it’s organic, is because of the taste. It’s fresh, flavorful, and has no sugar added (just the sugar that is naturally occurring in tomatoes). While I buy organic as often as I can, living in a small town can often make that a hard choice. Luckily, I don’t have to worry about that with our pasta sauce because Newman’s Own Organics products are available at our local grocery store.

I also reach for this brand of pasta sauces and salad dressings because of the company’s mission. A mission that might come as news to you. While most know that the brand was founded by the late actor and philanthropist, Paul Newman, you might not know that since that very first day the company began in 1982 Newman’s Own has always given 100 percent of profits to charity.

Today, the company has given over $485 million to charity!

Giving to social causes is not a marketing gimmick for Newman’s Own – it’s the premise on which the company was founded. When Paul Newman entered the natural and organic food business, it wasn’t a vanity project. The only way he would sell a product with his famous face on it was if 100 percent of profits went to charity. Today, Newman’s Own continues to carry on his philanthropic legacy while also creating some of the cleanest and best-tasting organic foods available.

Spinach Manicotti Prepare Ahead Meals

Best-tasting and fresh is exactly what you find when you open up a jar of Newman’s Own Organics pasta sauce and it’s what makes this Spinach Manicotti recipe one of my favorite prepare ahead meals for my family.

Spinach Manicotti – Prepare Ahead Meals that Everyone Loves
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Ingredients

  • 15oz Ricotta Cheese
  • 10oz pkg Frozen, Chopped Spinach [thawed & squeezed dry]
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Mozzarella Cheese [divided]
  • 3/4 cup shredded Parmesan Cheese [divided]
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp minced parsley [+ a bit more for garnish]
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/8 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 jars Newman's Own organic pasta sauce
  • 1 pkg Manicotti Shells

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine Ricotta, Spinach, 1 cup Mozzarella, 1/4 cup Parmesan, Egg, Parsley, Onion Powder, Pepper, and Garlic Powder.
  2. Combine Marinara sauce and water. Spread 1 cup sauce in a 13x9x22 baking dish.
  3. Stuff uncooked manicotti shells with spinach mixture. Arrange over sauce.
  4. Pour remaining sauce over manicotti. Sprinkle with remaining Mozzarella & Parmesan. Cover and refrigerate overnight. The dish can also be frozen at this step.
  5. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 40 to 50 minutes or until heated through.
https://soeasybeinggreen-blog.com/2017/02/spinach-manicotti-prepare-ahead-meals/

5 Natural Cold and Flu Relief Ideas for When You’re On the Go [+ Amazon Gift Card Giveaway!]

When you’re on the go, cold and flu symptoms can seem even worse. Here are 5 natural cold and flu relief ideas that will help you heal and feel better sooner.

This post was inspired by a collaboration with Quantum Health. All opinions are my own. This post may contain affiliate links.

We all know that Moms simply don’t have time to be sick, right? Between school drop-off, gymnastics, birthday parties, and school functions, I feel like I’m constantly on the go so I really don’t have time to feel bad. Unfortunately, colds and the flu don’t discriminate and can hit us Moms just as easy as anyone. Today I’m sharing 5 natural cold and flu relief ideas to help when sickness hits.

Saline Nasal Drops

Whether your nose is stuffy or not, saline nose drops are a great option for natural health. Their inexpensive, small and convenient bottles for dropping in your bag, and have simple, natural ingredients for relief. Saline nose drops thin mucus and drainage making it easier for you to breathe and helping to relieve sinus pressure.

Water Bottle

Warm or very cold liquids also help to thin out mucus, which is one of the main culprits in both a cold and the flu. Taking those drinks along is easy when you have a water bottle that helps keep cold drinks cold and hot drinks hot.

While drinking water helps you stay hydrated and fight off viruses faster, warm drinks can often help in the same way and offer extra benefits. Warm tea feels great on a sore or dry throat. Adding ingredients to your cup of warm tea like lemon and ginger is a great way to help fight off colds faster, as well as offer even more relief thanks to the vitamins and minerals in both.

Thera Zinc Elderberry Lozenges

Speaking of sore throats, eating or using throat lozenges often help give relief. The problem with most throat lozenges, though, is the amount of sugar in them which can do more harm as sugar actually suppresses your immune system for hours after ingestion. I’ve found a great natural health alternative to sugary lozenges in Thera Zinc Elderberry Lozenges.

If you’re read much about natural health remedies, you’ve likely read a lot about elderberry. Elderberry can help with symptom relief from colds, the flu, and even sinus issues. With the combination of elderberry and Zinc Gluconate, these great tasting lozenges not only give your throat relief but offer immune boosting properties and provide the nutritional support your body craves. The convenient roll contains 14 raspberry flavored lozenges which makes it the perfect size for on-the-go natural relief.

Hand Sanitizer

The only thing worse about being sick is picking up more germs and getting sicker! I know hand sanitizer is the last thing you expect to show up on a list of natural cold and flu relief ideas, but it does when you make your own! Skip the store-bought sanitizers and use this recipe from Wellness Mama to make a natural version to help keep more germs at bay.

Travel Humidifier

Portable Humidifier USBPortable Humidifier USBBesides a sore throat and cough, stuffiness is the symptom I dislike the most when I’m sick. I run my humidifier constantly when I’m at home [even when I’m not sick], but when I’m on the go – I’m out of luck… or maybe not!

I recently discovered travel humidifiers and I’m thinking I must invest in one for some natural relief when I’m away from home. Most run on a USB cord so they can be used in the car, hotel rooms, and just about anywhere you can find a plug-in or USB cable.

Rest when you’re NOT on the go

While I know us Moms feel like we’re constantly on the go, with a dozen things to do at all times, it’s important to rest. When you’re finally able to sit down at home, do it. Give yourself permission to rest and remind yourself that to be your best, you need to feel your best! While our own health and wellness is often the last thing on our mind, it’s something I have to remind myself of often because I know my family can’t count on me until I feel healthy.

Now that you’re armed and ready with natural cold and flu relief ideas for when sickness hits, how about we go a step farther and give one of you a pack of Thera Zinc Elderberry Lozenges + a $25 Amazon Gift Card so you’ll really be ready!

This giveaway ends March 1st.  It is open to US residents, 18+ only.
Please use the Rafflecopter form below to enter.

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The SECRET to Make a Shutterfly Photo Book the Easiest Way Ever

 

Everyone loves them, but sometimes photo books can take HOURS to design. Here’s the secret to make a Shutterfly photo book in MINUTES!

Don’t you just love photo books? We have one that I made with our photos from our first Disney World trip and the girls still look at it regularly. But I rarely have time to print photos let alone design an entire book. I love them, really I do, but once I start trying to make one I look up at the clock and realize it’s been 2 hours and I’ve only done 3 pages.

Tell me I’m not alone. Now, I’ll tell you that I have a HUGE secret on how to make a Shutterfly photo book in just minutes!

Shutterfly’s new photo book service, Make My Book is utterly amazing, especially for us Moms who love photo books, but just don’t love the time it takes to make them. I admit, the only reason it takes me time to  make them is because I’m a perfectionist and I’m constantly analyzing which photo is better and which page backgrounds should go with others, but guess what… my secret will save you from that over analyzing!

When you use the service you only have a few tasks – you leave the rest up to the glorious Shutterfly designers. But let’s get back to your tasks. The first step to make a Shutterfly photo book is to pick a theme! I chose to make our book all about our recent trip to Harry Potter World at Universal Studios. When you pick up and fly to Orlando for 3 days to celebrate your Wizard Loving Girls, the experience deserves to make a photo book!

Next, you upload your photos. While there are different choices about how many photos to use – I chose to use as many as possible with no duplicates. Do you know what that means? I didn’t have to look through the 300 photos that I had of our trip – the Shutterfly designers did that for me and picked out only the best ones for my book!

I got the email just a few days after I submitted all my photos for our book. I was ecstatic to see the beautiful book that was designed all for me! While I chose to have some embellishments included, I decided to go in and add a few things to the book… you know, perfectionist here. I didn’t have to change anything, but I did add a few notes for reminders of our trip.

Using Shutterfly’s Make My Photo Book service will only cost you an additional $9.99 [and it’s worth every single penny] for your photo book. I couldn’t recommend this service enough. It was an absolute delight to create make this Shutterfly photo book – no hours of designing on my part, no sifting through hundreds of pictures… just going straight to enjoying the memories together!

When you’re ready to make a Shutterfly photo book and enjoy the creation of the book as much as you enjoy looking at them, head over to Shutterfly and choose their new Make My Book service! And you’ll always find me here, so you can thank me later!

Share Your Opinions On Family Planning in This Community

This is a sponsored post. I received a promotional item from C Space as a thank you for participating.

In order to support the development of better contraception/family planning services, C Space has created a private online community of women who wish to share their voice and opinions.  Within the One Woman to Another community women will be able to confidentially share their experiences, connect with one another, and participate in market research activities.

What to Expect: 

  • Fast and Easy – As a member, you can expect to spend 10 to 15 minutes online per week contributing to various community activities.
  • Influence – Your voice is powerful! Help us understand your experiences, challenges, successes and unmet needs. Members will express their insights though surveys, discussions, quick polls and other online interactive activities to help inform decision makers in the healthcare industry who are working to ensure the relevancy of future programs, services and products.
  • Learn New Things – Anonymously connect and collaborate with other women like yourself.

Privacy Note: Your personal and identifying information will be kept confidential and is NOT shared with the sponsor or anyone else – this is true for your completion of this brief qualifying survey as well as for your participation within the community. Your identity and contributions on the community site will be completely anonymous. This isn’t a clinical trial. It is anonymous, healthcare market research.

Membership is by invitation only and spots are filling up fast for the One Woman to Another community, so take this quick survey today to see if you qualify: http://bit.ly/2kkKdio

Love to Cook for Your Family? Join this Online Community & Earn Amazon Gift Cards!

This is a sponsored post. I received a promotional item as a thank you for participating.

Do you love getting creative in the kitchen? Kraft Heinz’s wants your help! Join this exclusive online community and help inspire future products. See if you qualify here: http://bit.ly/2lI9EGW.

In addition to the opportunity to impact the brand, members will receive Amazon gift codes each month for participating! In additional to the monthly gift codes, there are chances to earn even more each month by participating in specific projects and activities geared just towards you!

Are your children picky eaters or begging to switch things up? Each day provides a new challenge when it comes to keeping bellies full and happy. Kraft Heinz cares about the effort you put into making meals for your family and would like your help inspiring new products.

Kraft Heinz and their research partner, C Space, want to hear from you and other parents as they seek participants for an exclusive, secure, moderated online community. Those who participate will get the chance to learn from other parents in the community and will serve as honorary Heinz advisors by providing feedback directly to Kraft Heinz decision-makers. In this community, explore as you answer surveys, participate in discussions, have a sneak peak at what’s coming next and share your thoughts before it’s released to market. As a dedicated consumer, your opinions are valued and celebrated and deserve to be heard.

If you have a lot to share on what it’s like to prepare meals for your family, and how you stay ahead of the game to keep things simple, Heinz wants your voice to play a role in their future.

Spots are limited so signup today to start talking all things food: http://bit.ly/2lI9EGW

10 of the Best Baby Carriers Under $40

They are almost always on your baby registry, but how do you know which are really the best baby carriers on the market? Here are 10 of the best when you’re on a budget!

This post may contain affiliate links.

When I was pregnant with my first child, I really really wanted a baby carrier. At almost 8 years ago, baby carriers weren’t quite as popular, at least in my area, so putting one that cost over $200 on my baby registry just wasn’t an option. I couldn’t fathom asking friends and family to pay that much for a carrier – especially when most didn’t even know what they were!

Fast forward to now and baby carriers are all the rage. While the more expensive ones do offer great comfort and fun prints, there are plenty of great carriers at much lower price points. Here are 10 of the best baby carriers for anyone on a budget because they are all LESS than $40!

Infantino Swift Classic Carrier

Infantino Swift Classic Carrier, BlackInfantino Swift Classic Carrier, Black

It’s the least expensive on the list at a price point of less than $18 regular price, so I have to name it first. I haven’t had firsthand experience with this carrier, but the hundreds [actually over 1,000] of reviews on Amazon are pretty astounding. While it may not be a carrier that you use all the time, it would be a fabulous one to keep in the car when you need it in a pinch.

Baby K’Tan

The Baby K’Tan Baby Carrier is one of the most unique on this list of best baby carriers. It resembles a wrap, but, in my opinion, is much easier to conquer and learn. These carriers come in sizes to fit you best. Slip them on then slip baby right inside. With 5 different wearing positions and no buckles or straps to tie, this carrier should be at the top of your registry!

Infantino Cuddle Up

I think the Infantino Cuddle Up resembles the more expensive carriers more than any other on this list, but still sits under the $40 mark [which is almost hard to believe]! The carrier features super trendy colors and styling, front and back carry options, a detachable hood, and carries children from 12-40 pounds.

Amazon Baby Registry

Bitybean

This carrier is on the higher end of our budget price, but it’s a fabulous carrier to have because of it’s size. It folds down to the size of a soda can!

The Bitybean carrier is actually made of a lightweight nylon material that is machine washable. While it definitely works as a great carrier, I would not recommend wearing it for long periods of time. It’s an amazing carrier to have as you can throw it in your diaper bag because of the small size. While Bitybean retails for closer to $50, you can find it on sale often on Amazon for less than $40.

Mo+m Ring Sling Baby Carrier + Nursing Cover

I never could quite get the hang of a ring sling, but some Moms love them. Like wraps, they tend to be on the pricey side, but I did find this option on Amazon that features good ratings. It also doubles as a nursing cover, so that’s definitely a plus side for those of us on a budget.

Mo+m Ring Sling Baby Carrier & Breastfeeding Nursing Cover - Adjustable Wrap [for Infant to Toddler Age]Mo+m Ring Sling Baby Carrier & Breastfeeding Nursing Cover – Adjustable Wrap [for Infant to Toddler Age]

Infantino Flip Advanced 4-in-1 Convertible Carrier

This carrier is actually the #1 best seller in Soft Structured Carriers on Amazon. It is very similar in structure to some of the more expensive carriers but is available at a fraction of the price. Check out the amazing sale on Amazon right now!

Infantino Flip Advanced 4-in-1 Convertible Carrier, Light GreyInfantino Flip Advanced 4-in-1 Convertible Carrier, Light Grey

Moby Wrap

The Moby Wrap was the first type of “carrier” I was introduced to because it was stocked on Target shelves and it’s the first one I actually held in my hands!

While wraps take a bit more practice to use than structured carriers, they are so versatile that you absolutely shouldn’t overlook them. Unlike some carriers, wraps can be used from birth to toddler age with no additional accessories needed making them one of the best baby carriers for anyone on a budget.

Baby Wrap Sling

While this baby carrier is called a sling, I would definitely refer to it as a wrap since you must tie it around yourself.

Baby Wrap Sling with Blue Polka Dot Pattern -100% CottonBaby Wrap Sling with Blue Polka Dot Pattern -100% Cotton

It’s a fun print at a great price point for a baby carrier on a budget.

Baby B’Jorn

If you see baby carriers on movies, odds are it’ll be a Baby B’Jorn. Up until recent years I think the two terms were used interchangeably. While most Baby B’Jorn baby carriers are definitely above our $40 budget in this post, they do have one carrier that fits the bill.

Well, sometimes. This carrier retails for closer to $80, but you’ll find it at a discount on Amazon almost all the time right at around $40.

Infantino Sash Wrap and Tie Baby Carrier

Last, but certainly not least, is the 3rd Infantino carrier on our list. The Sash Wrap and Tie Baby Carrier features the ability to adjust and customize the fit of a wrap, but the security of a back panel like on a soft structured carrier.

Infantino Sash Wrap and Tie Carrier - DotsInfantino Sash Wrap and Tie Carrier – Dots

With over 1,400 reviews and 4.5 stars, this is definitely one of the best baby carriers that you could choose for under $40.

Besides looking for less expensive options, there are other ways to save on the best baby carriers. You can purchase second hand through Facebook Local Selling Groups, Children’s Consignment Sales and Stores, and from friends who have children that have outgrown their carriers.

I would also encourage everyone is interested in carrying their babies to check out a local Babywearing International group. It’s a great way to see a variety of carriers up close and personal and even try them out with lending libraries before you purchase.

You can also include your favorite baby carrier on your Amazon Baby Registry. Even if someone doesn’t buy it off your registry, Amazon gives Prime members a discount on items left on their registry as a completion discount!

Are You Living with Uterine Fibroids or Endometriosis? Share Your Knowledge

This is a sponsored post. I received a promotional item from C Space as a thank you for participating.

Attention women! Are you living with Uterine Fibroids and/or Endometriosis? Or do you know someone with either of the two conditions? C Space is providing a confidential online forum to unite about 200 women who live with Uterine Fibroids and/or Endometriosis.

This is by invitation only. See if you qualify here: http://bit.ly/2jZqEMr

The Just Between Us community is a place where you can safely connect with other women like yourself. Members will also provide feedback to influence future programs and services.

What to Expect: 

  • Fast and Easy – As a member, you can expect to spend 10 to 15 minutes online per week contributing to various community activities.
  • Influence – Your voice is powerful! Help us understand your experiences, challenges, successes and unmet needs. Members will express their insights though surveys, discussions, quick polls and other online interactive activities to help inform decision makers in the healthcare industry who are working to ensure the relevancy of future programs and services.
  • Learn New Things – Anonymously connect and collaborate with other women living with Uterine Fibroids and/or Endometriosis.

Privacy Note: Your personal and identifying information will be kept confidential and is NOT shared with the sponsor or anyone else – this is true for your completion of this brief qualifying survey as well as for your participation within the community. Your identity and contributions on the community site will be completely anonymous. This isn’t a clinical trial. It is anonymous, healthcare market research.

Membership is by invitation only and spots are filling up fast for the Just Between Us community, so take this quick survey today to see if you qualify: http://bit.ly/2jZqEMr

5 Must-Haves When Staying in a Hotel with Kids [+ 2 Nights at Extended Stay America Giveaway!]

When traveling with kids, there are certain things you should always look for in a place to stay. Here are my 5 hotel must-haves when staying in a hotel with kids.

This post about finding the best deals on back to school outfits is brought to you by a collaboration with Extended Stay America. All opinions are my own.

My husband and I have always loved to travel. It’s something that we love to do together and what we talk about doing once we retire. When we had kids, we didn’t let that stop our traveling. Granted, we do think more about their point of view when we choose a destination now, but we happily include them in all of our travel plans.

Traveling with kids brings about some special circumstances, though. Now that we’ve been visiting hotels with kids for over 6 years now, I’ve definitely got a list of things that I look for before we book a place to stay.

Spacious Rooms

It’s either a deal breaker or a hotel stay maker. I like my space and if I have to stay in a hotel room with 1 bed with my 2 girls and my husband, that’s definitely a deal breaker. I can deal with 2 beds in the same room, but really enjoy booking a hotel stay that offers a bedroom or separate sleeping area for the kids.

In Room Kitchen

However, I can totally deal with a smaller room if it features a kitchen! When you’re staying in a hotel with kids longer than a weekend, a kitchen is definitely a must. It can get expensive eating out for meals with kids, and we all know how they like to snack all day long, so a kitchen is great for families on a budget.

As soon as we arrive in our destination city we scope out the closest market to buy snacks, fresh fruit, and drinks to stock up the kitchen so there’s no problems with hungry kids! This is where Extended Stay America definitely gets it right for traveling with kids because each room features a fully-equipped kitchen that includes a stove, microwave, and refrigerator.

WiFi

It’s not just for me, it’s for them too. Tablets save the day a lot of times when we’re staying in a hotel with kids – especially if we’re tagging along on one of hubby’s business trips. So many hotels charge a Wifi fee, but not Extended Stay America. They offer free in-room wifi!

On Site Laundry

I know I don’t have to tell you that kids are messy, right? Having an on-site laundry facility has saved my sanity dozens of times when we’ve been traveling. It also makes it so much easier to pack!

If I know we’re staying somewhere with laundry facilities, I tend to pack much lighter, with only about half the clothes we need for the trip, and wash once in the middle of our stay!

Breakfast

It’s the most important meal of the day, but when I’m away from home the last thing I want to do is cook breakfast… even in a room with a kitchen! That’s the reason we always make sure that our hotel offers a breakfast option. Extended Stay America has great grab-and-go breakfasts available that are perfect for our family.

Pools, Discounts, and Rewards

While it’s not technically a must-have, we definitely scope out places to stay that have an indoor or outdoor pool. It’s a great way to keep the kids entertained when you’re away from home and also a great way to get some exercise when you’ve been in a hotel room.

I also check out rewards programs offered by our favorite places to stay. Since we like to travel a lot, and hubby does a lot for work as well, it works out well. Extended Stay America has a great Extended Perks Rewards Program, which gives you access to special national and local discounts from America’s top brands the moment you enroll. Plus, you can save up to $2,500 annually with no points required.

Speaking of discounts, I always look for great deals when I’m staying in a hotel with kids and I’ve got a GREAT one to share with you for Extended Stay America.

Stay 1 or 29 nights [or any amount in between] and get 18% off your stay at Extended Stay America with promo code MB7CB.
Valid until February 21st.*

Let’s celebrate this amazing deal with an amazing giveaway, shall we?! One lucky winner will WIN 2 FREE nights at Extended Stay America!**

This giveaway will end on March 7th. It is open to US residents, 18+ only.
Please use the Rafflecopter form below to enter.

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*18% off 1-29 nights offer good for one reservation booked on ExtendedStayAmerica.com by 2/21/17, with a check-out date on or before 6/30/17. Discount applied at hotel upon check-out. Reservations based on availability. Offer cannot be combined with any other offer or negotiated or special rate, including but not limited to Advanced Purchase. Valid only on original reservations. Discounts do not apply to extensions/modifications. Cannot be applied to reservations already booked. Only one promotion discount per thirty days can be used by the same guest at the same hotel location. Offer valid only at Extended Stay America hotels.
**Offer good for one reservation booked online by 3/31/17, with a departure/check-out date on or before 6/30/17.  The two free nights must be used within the same stay, and any unused free nights will be forfeited.  The lowest-rated two nights within your stay will be deducted from your bill upon check-out.  Reservations are based on availability and must be made online at ESA.com. Additional restrictions and blackout dates may apply. Offer cannot be combined with any other offer, discount or special rate, including Advanced Purchase. Valid only on original reservations and not on any reservation extensions. Offer is non-transferable, non-cancelable and not redeemable for cash or credit. Offer not valid on current or pending reservations. Offer valid only at Extended Stay America brand hotels.

Where to Buy LuLaRoe Online

If you’re ready to dress in the comfiest leggings, most stylish dresses, and flattering tunics, you’re ready to wear LLR! Here’s the skinny on where to buy LuLaRoe online.

Where to Buy LuLaRoe Online
This post may contain affiliate links.

Half the fun [or frustration – it depends on your outlook I suppose] of LuLaRoe is buying it. These one-of-a-kind type leggings and tops aren’t just on a clothing rack at your local department store. LuLaRoe is sold in a direct selling method in which you must find a consultant to buy from in most cases. However, there are ways to buy LuLaRoe online in addition to through consultants.

Buy LuLaRoe Online on Facebook

If you want to buy LuLaRoe online, you definitely need to check out Facebook Groups. It’s the platform that consultants are encouraged to use and where you’ll find the biggest selection, in most cases. There are 3 main ways to buy LuLaRoe on Facebook.

  1. Consultant Groups
    The best way to find consultant groups is to ask your LuLa-lovin’ friends where they purchase. You can also search groups in the Facebook search bar. Consultants usually have a VIP group where they offer regular sales.
  2. Buy/Sell/Trade Groups
    You can find these groups by the same means you can find consultant groups. Most of the time you’ll find used clothing for sale, but a lot of times people sell brand new clothing. Like so many who fall in love with LuLaRoe [ahem, yes, me too], buying can be addicting and “some people” might find they have too much so they sell in these type of groups.
  3. Multi Consultant Sales
    These type of sales are a little harder to find, but you get a really nice payoff when you do find them! The competition for buying LuLaRoe is usually smaller because there is much more inventory available. A lot of times you’ll also find that groups like this offer free shipping, which is one thing I LOVE when buying LuLaRoe online. Anyone else hate paying for shipping? I blame it on the Amazon Prime effect.

Resale Apps and Websites

In addition to buying both used and new LuLaRoe on Facebook, you’ll find a lot of options on different resale apps and websites. A lot of times you’ll find really, really good deals on these sites.

Some of my favorites include:

  • Poshmark – This is a great app to buy and sell with as they offer great protection for both buyers and sellers. The only drawback [but also could be a pro] is that shipping is a set rate of $5.95 per transaction. A lot of sellers will offer discounts for buying more than 1 item. Be sure to use the code GNAOI when you sign up to get $5 off your first purchase!
  • Tradesy
  • ThredUp
  • Mercari – While this app doesn’t offer quite the protection that Poshmark does, it’s still a great app and one where you’ll find lower priced items because the price of selling is lower. Sellers can vary their shipping charges. Be sure to use the code QXFMVX to get a $2 credit in your account!

eBay

Do a quick LuLaRoe search on eBay and you might be surprised! I did and got over 97,000 results! Granted, they probably aren’t all LuLaRoe, but there’s a lot of to find. Consultants aren’t allowed to sell on eBay, but you’ll find that many do. However, eBay isn’t always the best choice because as you can see, the highly sought after prints [often referred to as unicorns] do go for higher prices than normal $25 retail. But it’s definitely still an option for buying LuLaRoe clothing onine.

Amazon

Lastly, you can’t talk about purchasing anything online without mentioning the giant retailer Amazon. While you won’t always find LuLaRoe listings, because it’s against LLR policy for consultants to sell online, you will find similar styles of printed leggings and other clothing to wear with your LuLaRoe.

ALL FOR YOU Women's 3/4 Sleeve Round Neck Flare HemALL FOR YOU Women’s 3/4 Sleeve Round Neck Flare HemLevaca Womens Clothing Long Sleeve Tunic Fashion Slimming Shirts TopsLevaca Womens Clothing Long Sleeve Tunic Fashion Slimming Shirts TopsLanmo Womens Swing Tunic Tops Loose Fit Comfy Flattering TLanmo Womens Swing Tunic Tops Loose Fit Comfy Flattering TDREAGAL Womens Wave Striped Zig Zag V Neck Chevron PrintDREAGAL Womens Wave Striped Zig Zag V Neck Chevron Print

While the Irma is probably my favorite top to pair with my leggings, Amazon has great tunic options for really good prices.

Can’t get enough LuLaRoe? Check out my other posts here:

5 Ways to Style LuLaRoe Leggings Obsessed with LuLaRoe Leggings

7 Things You Need to Know About Harry Potter World Before You Go

Planning a trip to Harry Potter World? Here are the 7 things that you need to know before you make the trip to Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida!


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This past Fall we took our girls on a weekend getaway of a lifetime. Ok, maybe of my lifetime because let me tell you, I’m a total Potterhead. In fact, I’ve turned them into little Harry Potter fanatics too and I couldn’t be happier about that!

While they were still completely enamored with all things Harry P., hubby and I wanted to plan a surprise trip to Harry Potter World. Technically the area of Universal Studios is called The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, but the girls simply know it as Harry Potter World. We hatched out a brilliant plan to let them know we were going just days before we made the journey [and I’ll be sharing THAT fun idea soon!] and their reaction was priceless.

I tried to do a bit of research before we left, but I really wanted to let them completely lead the weekend and our 2 days at Universal Studios because it really was all about them… and Harry. But if you’re like me and you want to be prepared for some of the best things to do at Harry Potter World before you go, I wanted to make sure you know not to miss some of these that turned out to be our favorite activities!

Buy a Wand

You’ll find this tip at the top of almost any list of things to do at Harry Potter World as soon as you get there. That’s because the lines to buy a wand at Ollivander’s used to be hours long, literally. One excellent tip, though, is that you can buy a wand at more places than just Ollivander’s IF you want to skip the crowd [even though it’s not necessarily hours long anymore]. I will say, though, the interactive “show” at Ollivander’s makes it totally worth buying there.

Another tip? There is now an Ollivander’s Wand Shop in both parks – Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade!

Also, I highly recommend buying at least one interactive wand. Being able to do spells across both theme parks was just incredible. You’ll get a map inside your wand box, but anywhere you see these symbols on the ground, your wand can perform a spell to make something magical happen!

Bonus Tip: Buy some Harry Potter Gear before you Go!

Robes, wands, and glasses can be a bit pricey at the theme park. While I totally recommend buying an Interactive Wand at Ollivander’s, we purchased Gryffindor robes on Amazon before we went and took them with us. They were about $40 cheaper than at the park AND they’re great quality.

Child Harry Potter Deluxe Costume MediumChild Harry Potter Deluxe Costume MediumHarry Potter Eyeglasses Costume AccessoryHarry Potter Eyeglasses Costume AccessoryHarry Potter Scarf Costume AccessoryHarry Potter Scarf Costume AccessoryRubies Harry Potter Magic WandRubies Harry Potter Magic Wand

Tour Hogwarts Even If You Don’t Ride

My good friend Christie from Raising Whasians let me in on this tip and it was one of my favorites! The attention to detail all throughout Harry Potter World is amazing and one of my favorites is the Hogwarts castle where the Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey™ ride resides. Half of the experience is walking up through Hogwarts to get to the ride and I hated that my girls didn’t get to see it on our last visit.

Best tip? Tell the attendant at the bottom that you’re just touring the castle! They’ll let you right in and you can have a leisurely walk with your family exploring the amazing detail of this amazing building.

Meet Stanley and Dre Head at the Knight Bus

Don’t pass the Knight Bus outside of King’s Cross Station without meeting Stanley and Dre Head, the Shrunken Head that hangs from the rearview mirror on the Knight Bus. In full character at all times, Stanley is a delight to kiddos [and adults] that want a picture. Dre Head even interacts with guests and tells jokes.

Eat at a Themed Restaurant

One thing Universal Studios does best is detail and the restaurants in Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade definitely do not disappoint. We enjoyed lunch at The Leaky Cauldron and I literally felt like Ron and Hermione might walk up at any time and sit down beside us. I literally felt like I was a part of the wizarding world!

The food was enjoyable, although be prepared that it is traditional British fare. I also recommend that you go at an “off time” to eat. The lines were very long at typical lunch and dinner times.

Enjoy a Butterbeer

While the outdoor carts are easily accessible and totally fun, we found the shortest line for Butterbeer at The Fountain of Fair Fortune in Diagon Alley.

Another tip? The frozen butterbeer is definitely a favored over the regular version!

Express Passes Don’t Work for All Rides – Try These Ideas Too!

While I totally recommend buying Express Passes for your family during your visit, especially if you’ll just be at the parks for a day or two, keep in mind that they don’t work for every ride in The Wizard World of Harry Potter in Orlando. You cannot use the Universal Express Passes on Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts™, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey™, and the Hogwarts™ Express.

Other ideas to make these rides, and others in the park, shorter wait times is to take advantage of the Single Rider Line and especially the Child Swap. My girls would have sat in the Child Swap room at Hogwarts all day because they were showing Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone.

Ride the Hogwarts Express Both Ways

While the Hogwarts Express serves as an easy way to transport between both parks [remember, you must have a Park to Park ticket to board], it’s a fun ride in itself! Be sure to ride it both to and from both parks as the “ride” is different each way.

Buy Unique Souvenirs

A visit to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is a unique one, which means regular souvenirs just won’t do. Some really great ideas for unique souvenirs are:

  • Purchase a postcard at Owl Post. You can mail yourself a postcard or letter right from the shop with a special Hogsmeade postmark.

  • Anything at Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes – this shop is full of amazing souvenir ideas and was one of my girls’ favorite places to shop in the entire theme park.
  • Gringotts™ Money Exchange – Sure you can spend the wizarding currency within the park, but it’s fun to keep some for a souvenir too!
  • Sweet Treats from Honeyduke’s – While you won’t be able to take them all with you, enjoy a deliciously sweet treat while you’re there and take a picture while you’re doing it. Voila – unique souvenir that was thoroughly enjoyed!

Just like the 7th book of the series was turned into 8 movies, this list turned into 8 things to know about Harry Potter World before you go! The most important thing to remember on your next visit to Universal Studios Orlando Florida is to have fun! Enjoy the amazing scenery around you and immerse yourself in all the wizarding world surroundings!

Be sure to check out my other tips while you’re visiting Universal Studios Orlando FL like these 7 things to know before you go!

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DIY Personalized Stuffed Animals

If you have little ones that love stuffed animals, DIY these adorable personalized stuffed animals from Dollar Tree for any holiday or occasion!

Dollar Tree Valentines Gifts
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My girls are stuffed animals obsessed. We have to limit the amount that they take into their beds at night. It’s a whole ceremony type thing when they determine which ones they’ll choose for the night.

I can’t say that I dislike it. I am kind of a stuffed animal fan myself. Not really for myself, but if I’m somewhere and the girls aren’t with me, I gravitate towards a stuffed animal gift. Those huge stuffed toy displays at The Disney Store? Yep, they get me every time.

Dollar Tree Stuffed Animals

One place you might not often think about stuffed animal shopping at, though, is The Dollar Tree. My girls, however, can tell you that Dollar Tree has a variety of stuffed animals at all times and especially around holidays. On my recent visit I found lots of Valentine’s themed puppies, bears, monkeys, and a few that were a little discernible animals.

You can sometimes find stuffed animals in bulk on Amazon that would be perfect for this DIY project.

While the two that I chose for the girls are cute enough on their own as a little gift, I knew I wanted to make them super special.

Dollar Tree Valentines Gifts

BEST DEAL: Cricut Explore Air and Rainbow Vinyl BundleBEST DEAL: Cricut Explore Air and Rainbow Vinyl BundleThat’s when I pulled out my HTV and Cricut Explore Air. If you have a Cricut, or similar machine, you’ve probably used Heat Transfer Vinyl before. It’s simple to use and once your machine cuts out your design, you simply iron on your shirt. That’s how I made this adorably Harry Potter T Shirt for Moreaya.

Since using an iron on a small stuffed animal would be a little difficult, I have the best tip for you… use your hair straightener!

Genius, right?! My straightener gets as hot as any iron I’ve ever had and it’s the perfect size to clamp right around the stuffed animal’s little body to attach the HTV.

Have a Cricut? Check out this amazing deal on a variety of HTV colors!!

In a matter of minutes, and a few cents over $1, you’ll have the cutest personalized stuffed animals around!

Of course, these two are going to make adorable unique valentines gifts for kids, but you could also make them for birthdays, Easter basket fillers, birthday party favors, and even Christmas gifts. The Dollar Tree always has holiday themed stuffed animals so it’s easy to find ones to match every holiday.

Plus, at only $1 [plus your HTV material – which it only uses a tiny bit], you could even make your child’s classmates personalized stuffed animals too!

10 Unique Valentine Gifts for Kids

If you plan to give your children gifts this Valentine’s Day, surprise them with these fun ideas and unique valentine gifts for kids!

Unique Valentines Gifts for Kids
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We always like to give our girls a little special gift on Valentine’s Day. It doesn’t have to be anything big, but just something fun to show our love! I’ve compiled a list of some super fun, unique gifts that I bet your kiddos will love too!

Heart Crayons

This is a fun idea that they can actually help you make! It’s a great way to reuse broken crayons that have seen better days. Simply melt down your crayons and use a heart mold like this one to repurpose into a fun, unique Valentines Gift!

Valentine’s Outfits

I have to admit, my girls are girly girls and LOVE clothes! They especially love over-the-top frilly clothes and Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to celebrate that!

Chiffon Ruffle Tutu Valentine's Day Heart Style Leg Warmers, Baby,Chiffon Ruffle Tutu Valentine’s Day Heart Style Leg Warmers, Baby,AISHIONY 5PCS Baby Girls' Newborn Tutu Onesie Outfit Princess PartyAISHIONY 5PCS Baby Girls’ Newborn Tutu Onesie Outfit Princess PartyRush Dance Ballerina Girls Dress-Up Princess Fairy Polka Dots &Rush Dance Ballerina Girls Dress-Up Princess Fairy Polka Dots &Kirei Sui Girls Pink Red Polka Dots Tutu Valentine's DayKirei Sui Girls Pink Red Polka Dots Tutu Valentine’s Day

You won’t believe the adorable outfits you can find on Amazon for all holidays, but especially Feb. 14th!

Building Blocks

Any day is a good day for building blocks and these adorable Valentine’s Day themed Lego sets are super fun for boys and girls… and Moms and Dads!

LEGO Bricks Valentines Cupid Dog Building KitLEGO Bricks Valentines Cupid Dog Building Kit

Books

Any day is also a good day for a good book. There are a ton of Valentine’s Day books for kids. This one just happens to be my family’s favorite!

Heart Eyes Emoji Gifts

Are your kids loving emojis lately? Everywhere you turn there are emoji products and the heart eyes emoji is just perfect for Valentine’s Day! Check out some of these adorable ideas to give the heart eyes love to your kids!

Emoji Heart Eyes HoboEmoji Heart Eyes HoboChia Emoji Heart EyesChia Emoji Heart EyesHeart Eyes Cookie CutterHeart Eyes Cookie CutterXS Heart Eyes EarmuffsXS Heart Eyes Earmuffs

Arts and Crafts

If there’s one thing that my girls love to do, it’s arts and crafts. I really think I could put a big bucket of craft supplies on the table and they’d create for hours. It will come as no surprise that they get craft supplies in the Christmas stocking, Easter basket, and on Valentine’s Day too!

Valentine’s Version of Favorite Toy

Did you know that some of your child’s favorite toys are often packaged in Valentine’s themes for the perfect “love” gift? I’ve seen Shopkins in Valentine boxes and even Marvel superheroes at some local stores. Be on the lookout for these cute themed packages.

Smores Kit

Alright, I want to know one kid that doesn’t like s’mores. This indoor S’mores Making Kit even tops my Valentine’s Day Want List!

Sterno Red Family Fun S'mores MakerSterno Red Family Fun S’mores Maker

Personalized Teddy Bear with Cricut

The Dollar Tree always has adorable stuffed animals during the holidays and Valentine’s Day doesn’t disappoint!

I got these adorable stuffed monkeys and then personalized them with HTV for my girls for Valentines gifts this year. They are stuffed animal crazy and they’re going to love these personalized stuffed animals with their names. Believe it or not, this is a super easy project if you have a Cricut. To make small HTV projects like this, I simply use my flat iron! Voila!

Dollar Tree Valentines Gifts

You can find a great deal on a Cricut Explore Air Bundle on Amazon right now!

Baking Kits

It’s the perfect way to treat your kiddos to something sweet, while spending time with them. I love for my girls to join me in the kitchen and these adorable baking kit and ideas are the perfect way to get them to do just that!

Love Bug Sugar Cookie Kit | Valentines Fun for All AgesLove Bug Sugar Cookie Kit | Valentines Fun for All AgesGirls White Heart Apron and Baker Bear Gift SetGirls White Heart Apron and Baker Bear Gift SetWarm Your Heart Doll Accessories Food Set Perfect for the American Baking Girl 12 piece setWarm Your Heart Doll Accessories Food Set Perfect for the American Baking Girl 12 piece setWilton 2304-1668 6 Piece Nested Heart Shaped Cookie Cutter SetWilton 2304-1668 6 Piece Nested Heart Shaped Cookie Cutter Set

Balloon Bouquet

Ok, that’s actually 11 unique valentine gifts for kids, but I couldn’t leave out balloons. All kids love balloons and for $1 each at Dollar Tree, you really can’t beat a balloon bouquet! Attach a package of their favorite box of candy or a small toy to a 3 balloon bunch and you have a delightfully fun gift for your kiddo.

While we can show our children love in more ways than gifts, of course, it IS fun to shower them with unique gift ideas this Valentine’s Day!