Chicago Auto Show Recap

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own, honest opinions. #HyundaiCAS #GenesisCAS

Chicago Auto Show

It’s Chicago Auto Show time again in the Windy City and every year, it just seems to get better. This year is no exception. I had the opportunity to walk the floor during media preview day (before the large crowds descended) as a guest of She Buys Cars, Hyundai and Genesis. The one thing that really stood out to me is how they’ve really incorporated more family-friendly activities throughout the show floor, so if you’ve hesitated to attend the Chicago Auto Show with your kids – don’t worry, there are things to do and see that will keep them happy and occupied.

CAS Play Area

This play area is part of the Chrysler Pacifica booth.

LEGO Batmobile

This is a lifesized Batmobile made from LEGOs.

Variety of Automobiles:

Another thing worth noting is the variety of vehicles you will see at the Chicago Auto Show. Whether you are interested in compact cars, pickup trucks, speedsters or family vehicles, you’ll find it all there. You can climb into some of the vehicles and see how it would feel to ride in it. You can also take some of the vehicles for a test drive. There are test tracks where you’ll feel how it’s like to be in the car through different driving situations, like up a steep hill or around a sharp curve.

New Technology:

What I noticed the most is how many automakers are including the technology trends in their newest car models. For example, when we visited with Hyundai, they showed us how the new Hyundai Elantra models are able to communicate with your Amazon Alexa. Imagine talking to your Amazon Alexa to start your car and have it set to a certain temperature before you even take a step into your car!

Safety First:

As a busy mom, I also appreciate how safety has become a top priority for many automakers. For example, some have added more cameras around the body of the car so you can see obstructions on the sides and front, not just behind you. Since my oldest will be driving in just a couple of years, it gives me peace of mind that automakers are trying to develop ways to keep drivers safe when either the car senses that you are drifting out of the lane you should be in or someone in the lane next to you is drifting too close to you.

Visit the Toyota Drive Center to take your own ride through this course.

At the Chicago Auto Show, you’ll also have the chance to see luxury car models and concept cars. Some of my favorites are the Genesis G90 and G80.

#GenesisCAS

She Buys Cars:

We were lucky to walk the show with Scotty Reiss of She Buys Cars. She is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to cars, so she shared commentary on the different brands and car models. Check out these Facebook live videos:

While you are at the Chicago Auto Show, make sure to stop by State Farm and check out their tiny roadhouse that is part of a pickup truck. You’ll be amazed at how much they fit into this tiny space.

Buy Tickets:

Visit the Chicago Auto Show’s website to buy tickets. The show runs until Monday, February 20th at McCormick Center.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

Parents’ Guide to Pokémon

Have your kids become a little obsessed with Pokémon? Do you ever feel like they’re speaking another language when they are talking about Pokémon? If so, I know just how you feel. All of my kids are into the Pokémon games and until this summer with Pokémon Go, I felt a little lost when they talked about it. Don’t worry – there is hope for us! Nintendo is hosting a Parents’ Guide to Pokémon, a special 101 tutorial geared specifically towards parents that will provide an overview of Pokémon and the two newest games – from the experts themselves!

Parents Guide to Pokemon

The YouTube Live session is on Thursday, Feb. 2 at 2 pm ET. To RSVP, sign up here: bit.ly/2kkP4fS.

If you would like more information about Pokémon, check out the Parents’ Guide.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

Road Trip Necessity: RavPower Chargers Up To 70% Off on Amazon.com

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

RavPower Pin

When we went on a road trip to Florida last month, which took about 24 hours, we wanted to make sure we were equipped with a cell phone charger that was portable, easy-to-use, can charge multiple devices and fully charge the devices before needing to be recharged itself. We decided to purchase a couple of theRAVPower 13400mAh Portable Chargers on Amazon.com after reading the reviews and when they were at a good price. It was one of the best purchases we’ve ever made! We are able to charge our smartphones and tablets with it from 0% to fully charged without the charger being completely drained. It also seems to charge a lot quicker than other chargers. We decided to get two – one to keep in the car in case of emergencies and one to take with us around Walt Disney World. It made our trip less stressful since we also used our phones as our main device to take photos. We never worried about running out of battery.

It’s on sale for 61% off on Amazon.com today with free 2-day shipping with Amazon Prime. It also makes great gifts! Other RavPower chargers are also on sale for up to 70%!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

T-Mobile Tuesdays: Free Movie Ticket from Fandango & More

T-Mobile Tuesday Pinterest

If you’re a T-Mobile customer, you can receive free stuff every week by downloading their free T-Mobile Tuesdays app. Each week, you’ll have the chance to also enter to win a variety of prizes.

TMobile Tuesday Spin the Wheel

This week’s prizes are:
– Ultimate BBQ Hookup
– 1 Year Subscription to Bon Appetit
– Genesis Propane Grill
– Bon Appetit Best Recipes 2015 Cookbook

T-Mobile Tuesdays Freebies

This week’s freebies are:
– Free Movie Rental from Vudu
– Free Movie Ticket from Fandango (up to $13)
– Free Small Frosty from Wendy’s

(The screenshot above includes the 1 year subscription from Bon Appetit that I won!)

Which is your favorite freebie from this week?

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

Best Free Apps to Get the Best Deals

Best Apps

I had the pleasure of appearing on Windy City LIVE sharing some of the best free apps to get the best deals.

Here’s how to get the apps (along with a few more):

Favado

You can use the Favado app to see what is on sale at the stores, along with the coupons that can be used to save even more money. It’s also easy to compare prices between stores. You may also use it to find lower prices to price match at certain stores.

Coupons.com

Use the Coupons.com app to find local deals (if you have your location settings turned on) and also find grocery coupons that can either be printed or added to your store loyalty card. If you have a wireless printer, you may even be able to print the coupons directly from your phone.

Store Apps

Many stores have now developed their own apps to save you even more money. Download their free apps to find out about sales, store coupons and reward programs. Some examples of store apps are:
Shop Your Way (Sears/Kmart)
Target
CVS
Jewel-Osco
Best Buy
Walgreens

Shopkick

Earn kicks on Shopkick when you make purchases using your connected credit or debit card and when you visit a store on the app. You can also earn kicks by scanning or purchasing select products throughout the store. You can then trade your kicks for rewards such as gift cards to select stores. Use those gift cards to reduce the amount you pay on your future purchases.

Cash Back Apps

There are a variety of apps that offer cash back from your purchases, including:
Ibotta
Ebates
Checkout 51
SavingStar
These apps will give you cash back from your purchases when you either submit your receipts or link up your store loyalty card. Some of them may even have limited time bonuses.

Receipt Hog

Submit your receipts on Receipt Hog to earn coins which you can then trade for Amazon gift cards or cash via PayPal. Use the cash or gift card you’ve earned on your following shopping trips to lower your final cost.

How to maximize your savings:

– Use the Favado app to find the best deals on the products you plan to purchase.
– Use either the Favado app or Coupons.com to print out coupons or load coupons onto your store loyalty card.
– Use a store app to find more coupons, deals and rewards.
– Use the Shopkick app when you enter the store (if it’s on the app) to collect kicks. Scan and/or purchase select products in the store to earn additional kicks. Link up your credit or debit card to earn even more kicks.
– Submit your receipts to the cash back apps and Receipt Hog. Earn gift cards to use towards future purchases.

Which are your favorite money-saving apps?

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

Save 50% Off Sprint Plans PLUS New Galaxy Forever Plans

Switch to Sprint and Save 50 on Your Monthly Rates

When you’re looking at ways to save on your monthly budget, one easy way is with your phone. With how quickly new technology and new phones are introduced, you can easily spend a fortune by continuing to upgrade your phone to the newest one. Sprint has come up with a plan to help you keep up without draining your bank account.

With Sprint’s Galaxy Forever program, you can upgrade to the latest Galaxy smartphone any time after making 12 payments on a Sprint Lease. Right now, the latest generation of the Samsung Galaxy series are the Samsung Galaxy S7 or Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.

The easy Galaxy Forever process:

• Lease the latest generation of the Samsung Galaxy series at any Sprint store, sprint.com or 1-800-SPRINT1 and confirm that you wish to participate in Galaxy Forever.
• Make 12 payments on your Galaxy Forever Sprint Lease.
• Upgrade to the next Samsung Galaxy flagship device with a quick and easy return of the used device in exchange for the latest and greatest smartphone.

In addition, you can also save big on rate plans by switching to Sprint and taking advantage of the biggest wireless offer in U.S. history. You can switch to Sprint and get 50 percent off most AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon rate plans. In addition, Sprint will pay switching fees up to $650 per line.

Here are the details:

• When you bring a number to Sprint, they will pay your switching fees up to $650 per line via an American Express® Reward Card after online registration and phone turn-in.
• Visit your local Sprint store, Sprint Store at RadioShack, www.sprint.com, or call 1-800-Sprint1 to switch.
• Get your new device with Sprint Lease, Galaxy Forever, iPhone Forever, Sprint Easy Pay installment billing or pay full retail price for the device. Or bring your own compatible device.
• Customers must port one line, and can add up to nine additional lines on the account.
• Customers must choose from the 50 percent off rate plans available from their current carrier.
• Cricket and MetroPCS customers also can switch and save 50 percent off their parent company’s postpaid rates.
• For customers who act on this exciting offer, their 50 percent off savings will be good until Jan. 8, 2018.

Our review of the Sprint plan:

We’ve been using the new Samsung Galaxy S7 from Sprint in the Chicago-area for about a month now. We have been very pleased with the service. We’ve found that coverage has been pretty solid whether we’re in our home, in another indoor location, outdoors or while on the road.

Since we are starting to have more cell phone users in our household, we are definitely looking for ways in which to maximize our cell phone budget. With Sprint’s plans, it may be our best solution!

Disclosure: We received the Samsung Galaxy S7 with Sprint service for review. All opinions are our own, honest opinions.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

Save 60% Off ROBOTS-4-U Summer Camps

Disclosure: I received a gift card. All opinions are my own, honest opinions.

robots4u2

Now is the time to start planning summer activities for your kids. Imagine the fun your kids will have learning about Robotics and Science, in an independent and exciting way! With Robots-4-U, campers have a BLAST, while learning and playing in a dynamic environment.

Their summer camps include:
– Robot / Science / Engineering / Day Camp / Challenges
– Camps Girls and Boys – Aged 7 to 14
– Robot Camps and Dynamic Art Camps offered during June, July and August
– Hands on Learning, Self-Paced. Beginners to Expert!

The camps are one week (5 days) long from Monday to Friday from either 9:00-11:30 a.m. or 12:30-3:00 p.m. There is a ration of 1 Instructor to 16 participants. Each Camper Individually uses a ROBOTICS or DYNAMIC ART Kit. Robot kits do not go home with campers but are available for purchase!

Check out this video:

SPECIAL OFFER:

Use the coupon code TEX1660M15 at checkout to save 60% off your purchase at Robots-4-U (except for custom orders) through March 31, 2016. Register early as camps do fill up quickly! Robots-4-U: Where Fun, Thinking & Learning comes to Life!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

6 Months of Free Instant Ink Holiday Special & HP Envy 5540 Printer Review

Disclosure: I received a complimentary HP Envy 5540 printer as an attendee of the Social Media on the Sand Conference. All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links. #NeverRunOut

HP Instant Ink

As much as I try to be paperless, I still find myself printing out quite a bit of things. From printable coupons, homework assignments, greeting cards, and personalized gifts, one thing I look for is a way to save money on printer ink without sacrificing the quality of the prints. My new favorite way to save money on ink is the HP Instant Ink Program! Have you ever found yourself having to make an emergency run for ink cartridges in the middle of printing out something for your child’s school project or for a business presentation? You’re not alone – I have had to do this before also! The HP Instant Ink Program is our lifesaver!

About the HP Instant Ink Program:

When you purchase an eligible printer, you’ll have the option of signing up for the HP Instant Ink Program during your setup process. The available plans are:

Occasional printing – $2.99 per month for 50 pages per month included, each additional set of 15 pages is just $1.00, plus you are able to roll over up to 50 unused pages per month.

Moderate printing – $4.99 per month for 100 pages per month included, each additional set of 20 pages is just $1.00, plus you are able to roll over up to 100 unused pages per month.

Frequent printing – $9.99 per month for 300 pages per month included, each additional set of 25 pages is just $1.00, plus you are able to roll over up to 300 unused pages per month.

Your cost is the same whether you print high quality photos or text. You can easily change your plans online if you find that you are using more or less than your current plan. There’s no annual fee and you can change or cancel your plan anytime!

Once you sign up for the program, you’ll be sent special HP Instant Ink cartridges, which have more than the XL cartridges, so you’ll replace them less often. You won’t be charged until after you insert your first HP Instant Ink cartridge.

The best part – your printer will tell HP when to send more ink and you’ll get the ink before you need it! No more running out to the store or waiting until your online order arrives to get your ink!

Holiday Special: 

Enter the promo code HOLIDAY15 while setting up your HP Instant Ink program
to get 6 months of free HP Instant Ink.

My review of the HP Envy 5540 printer:

HP Envy 5540 #NeverRunOut

Of all of the printers I’ve owned, this printer was by far the easiest to set up. The manual and setup screen walks you through everything. I didn’t even have to set up the wireless wi-fi connection. It automatically did that for me. It told me when to go on my computer or phone to download the printer drivers and set up the HP Instant Ink Program. I was up and running in less than 20 minutes.

The quality of the prints are very good, both in black and white and in color. There are also a variety of printables that you can access from the printer itself and it’s very handy to be able to print them out without having to go on your computer. You can download the free HP Printables app on your phone to view, print, and schedule out the printables.

Download the free HP ePrint app on your phone and you’re able to print from your phone at home, at work, or on-the-go. You can assign an HP ePrint email address to your printer or use the default one assigned to easily email documents to the printer.

Where to buy the HP Envy 5540:

With the deals going on right now on the HP Envy 5540 and the 6 month free instant ink, you are saving a lot of money! Here are just some of the deals this week (the HP Envy 5540’s regular retail price is $129.99):

HP Envy 5540 at Best Buy – $89.99

HP Envy 5540 at Staples – $89.99

HP Envy 5540 at HP – $89.99

One way I plan to use my HP Envy 5540 printer is to make personalized photo candles. Check out my tutorial here to start making your own personalized gifts! I’ll share more projects as I continue to play with my printer!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

Cyber Monday #LTDSavings Twitter Party 11/30/15 at 7:30 PM CT – $175 in Prizes!

#LTDSavings

Since you are already joining us for the #LakesideGift Twitter party, stay around right after for another fun Twitter party! Join us at 5:30 PM PT/8:30 PM ET on Monday, November 30th, as we talk about holiday shopping and about LTD Commodities! RSVP and participate for your chance to win $175 in prizes!

Here are the details:

Follow the hosts: @ValpakCoupons, @savings, @maritramos, @queenofreview, @peaofsweetness, and @liveafrugallife.

When: Monday, November 30th at 7:30 PM CT.

Where: On Twitter in the #LTDSavings hashtag or on tchat.

What: There are several questions they will tweet and discuss. Be sure to use the hash tag #LTDSavings to be eligible for the prizes.

Prizes: We’ll be giving away $175 in prizes from LTD Commodities.

RSVP: Submit your Twitter handle here to RSVP.

Eligibility: RSVP by adding your Twitter account to the link above, and actively participate during the Twitter party with the hashtag #LTDSavings on November 30th, 2015, from 5:30PM PT/8:30PM ET until 6PM PT/9PM ET. Winners will be chosen from the RSVP list using Random.org. Winners must be actively tweeting with the hashtag at the time they are randomly selected. Winners will be notified with an @ mention, and must respond via DM within 24 hours of being notified. If another winner must be chosen after the party is over, winner will be randomly selected from active participants during the party. There is a limit of one prize per household during the party. Please allow 4-6 weeks for delivery of your prize. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. VOID WHERE TAXED, PROHIBITED OR RESTRICTED BY LAW. Subject to official rules and open to United States residents.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

Cyber Monday #LakesideGift Twitter Party 11/30/15 at 7 PM CT – $175 in Prizes!

#LakesideGift

Cyber Monday is just a few days away! Join us at 5 PM PT/8 PM ET on Monday, November 30th, as we talk about holiday shopping and about The Lakeside Collection! RSVP and participate for your chance to win $175 in prizes!

Here are the details:

Follow the hosts: @ValpakCoupons, @savings, @maritramos, @queenofreview, @peaofsweetness, and @liveafrugallife.

When: Monday, November 30th at 7 PM CT.

Where: On Twitter in the #LakesideGift hashtag or on tchat.

What: There are several questions they will tweet and discuss. Be sure to use the hash tag #LakesideGift to be eligible for the prizes.

Prizes: We’ll be giving away $175 in prizes from The Lakeside Collection.

RSVP: Submit your Twitter handle here to RSVP.

Eligibility: RSVP by adding your Twitter account to the link above, and actively participate during the Twitter party with the hashtag #LakesideGift on November 30th, 2015, from 5PM PT/8PM ET until 5:30PM PT/8:30PM ET. Winners will be chosen from the RSVP list using Random.org. Winners must be actively tweeting with the hashtag at the time they are randomly selected. Winners will be notified with an @ mention, and must respond via DM within 24 hours of being notified. If another winner must be chosen after the party is over, winner will be randomly selected from active participants during the party. There is a limit of one prize per household during the party. Please allow 4-6 weeks for delivery of your prize. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. VOID WHERE TAXED, PROHIBITED OR RESTRICTED BY LAW. Subject to official rules and open to United States residents.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.