August 8, 2015

Kitchen Must Have: Non-Stick Oven Liner

This week my husband requested monkey bread for his birthday breakfast. I couldn’t find my bundt cake pan so I improvised with a casserole dish. Everything was fine until I opened the oven and smoke poured out. Turns out the casserole dish wasn’t large enough. When the dough cooked, it pushed the brown sugar and butter mixture out of the dish and into the oven. It appeared to be quite a mess.

dirty oven liner


Thank goodness I had a non-stick oven liner in the bottom of my oven. I had purchased it a few years ago at the grocery store on a whim. It was on clearance for only a few dollars. I have sensitive skin and don’t like to use harsh chemicals in my house so I figured I would give the oven liner a try. As you can see in the picture above, the oven liner was covered in a hardened sticky mess.

I waited for the oven to cool and then I pulled the oven liner out. I expected that I would need to scrub the liner so I set it in the sink. I was so surprised when I turned on the water and the crusty food popped right off the liner. I washed the liner and then set it in my dish drainer to dry.

clean oven liner


Ta-da! After just a few minutes of easy cleaning, my oven looks good again. I’ve had my oven liner for a few years and it has saved me time with cleaning and money on cleaning products.

You can find these oven liners at Wal-Mart, Amazon, Bed, Bath, & Beyond and other places that sell home goods.

This is not an affiliate post.


July 31, 2013

Product Review: 3M Command Picture Hanging Strips

A few months ago, my mom decided to give me my grandmother’s old pie pan. She knows how much I like vintage, antique, and unique items.  I set the pie pan in my china hutch until I could decide how to display it.

pie pan 1

I decided I wanted to hang the pie pan on my wall and soon discovered that it would be difficult to find an easy solution.  I looked at Michaels and Hobby Lobby. I looked at those plate wall hangers. I didn’t like the brass ones. I didn’t like the black ones. I didn’t want a colored hanger to take away from the look of the pie pan.

After much thought, I remembered that I had an assortment of 3M Command products that I won at Blogher two years ago.  I looked through the products and found the picture hanging strips.  They look sort of like a plastic velcro but unlike velcro, they have the 3M removable strips.  To me, this means that I could hang the pie pan without worrying about damaging my walls or damaging my grandmother’s antique pie pan.  There really was an easy solution to my dilemma.

pie pan 2

3M command strips


3M Command strips are great for college dorms, renters, or anyone that doesn’t want to damage their walls. It’s an easy solution to hanging pictures. 3M also has many other affordable hooks and hangers to match your décor.

I was searching on their website today and found a printable coupon.  Enjoy!

Have you tried the picture hanging strips?



April 5, 2013

Product Review: FamilyLife Resurrection Eggs

A few months ago, we purchased a home.  You know how it is to move — you soon find things that you forgot existed.  Each week I am unpacking more boxes and sorting through many years of accumulated possessions.  Many things we don’t need and are put into a “get rid of” pile.  Through all of the sorting and purging I found our Resurrection Eggs.  I hadn’t seen them in a few years and was excited to share these with my children this year.

resurrection eggs

The Resurrection Egg kit comes with 12 plastic eggs that are easily stored in a plastic egg carton.  Eleven of the eggs come with different items to help tell the story of Christ’s life, burial, and resurrection.  The last egg is empty which allows us to explain the resurrection.  (My kids loved this part!)  Also included is a booklet with an explanation of each egg which includes scripture references.

Each box contains:

  • 1 durable plastic egg carton
  • 12 plastic eggs
  • 11 unique objects to illustrate the Easter story
  • 1 bilingual booklet (English and Spanish)

The Resurrection Eggs can be purchased through FamilyLife, Christian Book Distributors, or at your local Christian bookstore.  Although some people have chosen to make their own kits, I find that $12.99 is a great value for the unique pieces and the booklet.

My children enjoyed the Resurrection Eggs and I plan to use these in the future with them.  I have also used this at my church when we had an egg hunt.  If you plan to use it for Sunday School or an egg hunt, I would recommend reading through the booklet first, as it is a bit lengthy and you might need to shorten it.

Have you ever used the Resurrection Eggs kit?

image FamilyLife

Disclaimer:  These views are my own. This is not a sponsored post.


August 9, 2011

Product Review & Coupon: Dr. Scholl’s Fast Flats

I just returned from Blogher. There were products everywhere. Most bloggers bring home loads of swag from the vendors and of course the companies freely give them out in hopes for product reviews around the web.

Product reviews are featured on The Thrifty Mommy but it’s not something I do on a regular basis. I don’t just want to constantly write about random products.  Instead, I choose to write about products that I really like or that stand out to me.

Dr. Scholl’s Fast Flats is one of those products that stood out to me.  Have you ever been to a party and found your feet in horrible pain from the cute heels or sandals you chose?  Dr. Scholl’s has invented an alternative to achy tired feet.

The fast flats fold and come inside a small convenient gold wristlet.  Just carry the shoes in the bag like it is a purse. The flats come in three different sizes and cost $8-10.

The shoes feel like slippers so I am wondering how long they would hold up.  I’m guessing that you could get a few uses out of them.  I have not personally worn them for an extended amount of time so I am not able to give a more exact measurement.  Of course durability would also depend on if you use them for dancing, walking back home from a party, etc.

The fast flats are definitely a creative idea and simple solution for aching feet.

Be sure to go to the Dr. Scholl’s website for a $2 coupon to use on any For Her product.


July 26, 2011

Product Review: Food Lion vs Parkay Squeeze Spread

Being a thrifty gal usually means that I am not name brand loyal.  In fact, one of my couponing tips is that you shouldn’t be name brand loyal.  If I can get something cheap enough or for free then I’ll usually give it a try. 

You won’t see generic products in my house very often.  It’s not that I’m a product snob and am too good for knock-offs.  It’s just that I can usually get name brand products for less money than generics.  Stores will usually run a better sale on name brand items than store brands.  When you combine it with a coupon these products are less expensive than generics.

Fast forward this whole story to these buttery squeeze spread products.  I generally don’t buy the squeeze spread because it’s not as healthy as other products but it works well for our homemade waffles.  Last year Food Lion had the Parkay spread for half price and so I picked up two bottles to use for waffles.  We were running low a few months ago and so my husband picked up a bottle of the Food Lion store brand to use.  We were surprised when we used the product and saw the difference in thickness and overall appearance (for lack of a better word).  The pictures will show what I mean.

You may think that maybe we didn’t shake up the bottle or that this was floating around at the top of the bottle.  Not so.  We used the entire bottle of Food Lion squeeze spread and it had this consistency throughout the whole bottle.  Our next bottle we were sure to purchase the Parkay.

I checked the labels on both products and they seemed to be very similar.  I am not sure of the difference between the two without doing more extensive research.  I am very willing to try other name brands of squeeze spread but will be avoiding the Food Lion brand. 

Which name brands are you loyal about buying? 

These ideas and opinions are my own.  I was not paid for this review.  Images (c) Karen Weideman.


July 10, 2011

Product Review: Next Step Hip Messenger Bag

Both of my children were born in July. This is the time of year when new toys begin arriving at my house. Along with new toys comes product reviews.  It’s important to let other parents know what to expect before they spend their money. 

First up for review is the Next Step Hip Messenger Bag.  This product is sold at Walmart for $10.

My daughter is artistic and creative. She would rather draw and create something than play with toys. This gift was a great choice for her.

The Next Step messenger bag comes with a variety of iron-on designs in themes such as rock, cheerleading, and camouflage. There are also iron-on letters and stars to help you make your bag one of a kind.

Pros: The bag has an assortment of iron-ons. There are over 190 to choose from. You can make your bag unique. At $10, this makes an inexpensive gift idea. My daughter and her friend had a fun time designing how she wanted the bag to look. We designed the front and back of the bag and had some supplies leftover which I kept for other craft projects.

Cons: When I took the messenger bag out of the box I was surprised at how small it was. This bag could not be used for a school bag. It is about 10 x 13 and the material is very thin. I think it would be more suitable for a purse. The iron-on appliques seemed difficult to adhere to the bag. It took longer than the instructions stated and I was careful to be sure the designs were completely attached before removing the film.  The bag came with silver fabric paint that they said you should use to attach the stars to the bag.  I applied a very small amount of the fabric paint to the stars and as you can see in the picture it comes out from behind the stars and leaves silver paint on the bag.  After applying the first star, I wished that I hadn’t used the fabric paint.  To make the paint look more intentional rather than a mistake, I applied enough paint to make a circle and then put the star in the middle of the circle.  If I were able to make this bag again, I would not use the stars.

Other thoughts:  This bag is a cute idea.  My daughter enjoyed making and designing it.  You shoud know that this is not a school bookbag.  It will serve as a cute purse for my daughter.  If you decide to purchase this bag, be sure to check your iron-ons before removing the film and leave your film on all of the designs until you are finished so that you don’t accidentally bump the other appliques with your iron.

Disclaimer: I was not paid for this review. These thoughts and opinions are my own.


March 6, 2011

Product Review: Eucerin Face Lotion

When I find a product that I really like I want to let my readers know about it.  In August 2010 I attended the BlogHer convention.  There were loads of vendors there. I browsed the area and tossed some products into my bag but one of the products I was most excited about was the Eucerin.

As I have mentioned before, I have suffered a long time with eczema.  There is no cure for it.  You can only treat the symptoms and avoid the causes.  Sometimes this is just not enough.

I was excited to try to Eucerin Face Lotion for two reasons – 1) Eucerin is a trusted name and 2) the lotion has SPF protection which is also important to me.

After using the Eucerin for a few weeks I had discovered that a very dry rashy spot above my eye was gone.  This is an area that I had been treating with petroleum jelly, creams, and other products.  I also noticed that the lotion was not greasy and did not clog my pores.

Here’s a little more information about the product from Eucerin:

Many facial moisturizers are not appropriate for sensitive skin, because they contain ingredients that can irritate, or they don’t provide sun protection. Eucerin Everyday Protection Face Lotion SPF 30 is a gentle, non-irritating way of protecting and moisturizing facial skin at the same time.

  • Microfine zinc oxide and titanium dioxide provide broad physical block again UV induced skin damage
  • Is fragrance-free, non-comeodogenic, non-irritating and clinically proven safe for sensitive skin
  • Recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation as an effective UV sunscreen
  • Provides all day moisturization
  • Has a lightweight, non-greasy formula
  • Can be used alone or under make-up

The Eucerin Face Lotion comes in a 4 oz bottle and sells for around $8 to $10.  This is a little pricey for my frugal budget but I have noticed that the product does go a long way. I have been using my bottle for a few months and I use it once or twice each day.

Have you tried the new Eucerin Face Lotion?

I received a sample of the face lotion but I was not paid or asked to review the product. The thoughts and opinions and my own.


January 14, 2011

Product Review: Simmons Beautyrest Sheets

Thanksgiving evening I headed out to Walmart.  Some of their Black Friday sales started at midnight and one of the things I wanted was some new sheets.  Walmart had Simmons Beautyrest 500 thread count sheetsfor only $20.  What a deal!  These were less than half price.  I was so excited.  I got a set of sheets for myself and then called my aunt to see if she wanted some sheets for her new bed and upon her approval, purchased some for her as well.  I was so happy over the deal that I posted this picture on facebook.

With everything that was going on, I didn’t get around to using my sheets until Christmas time.  These sheets have only been on my bed for about three weeks and already I have very noticeable signs of wear and the fabric is growing lint balls.  These are very uncomfortable! 

The wear you’re seeing in this picture is actually at the top of the bed near my pillow.  It wouldn’t be excusable, but it would be more understandable if the wear was near my feet.  So much wear near the top is just weird.  This is not an isolated area.  The fabric issue that we’re experiencing is on the entire sheet.

After looking on the Walmart website tonight I noticed there are several reviews for these sheets that mention piling, the rough feel of the sheets, not feeling like 500 thread count, and not washing well. 

Tonight I found the receipt for the sheets.  These will be laundered and returned to Walmart asap.  I have absolutely no use for sheets with irritating lint balls on them.  Even at $20 these would be a waste of my money.  After I return my sheets I will be forwarding the receipt to my aunt so that she can also return her unopened package.

Did you purchase the sheets deal at Walmart on Black Friday?  Have you had any issues with yours?


December 16, 2010

Tassimo T20 Brewbot: So Simple, A Five-Year-Old Can Do It

This week, my 5-year-old has been making me espresso and coffee. He’s very excited about his new job and I’m excited that I don’t have a big mess of coffee grounds to clean up from all of the grinding and packing!

Yesterday I came home from work and wanted some espresso. Up to that point, my husband and son were the only ones that had used the machine. My husband wasn’t home and I didn’t feel like reading the instruction booklet so I called him on the phone for some instructions. He told me to just have our son make it and that he would enjoy making coffee for me again.

I called my son down to the kitchen and asked him for some espresso. He popped in the creamer disc, pushed the top down, and within seconds the froth appeared in my cup. Then he lifted the lid, took out the milk creamer disk, popped in the espresso disc, pushed down the lid, and out came the espresso. I was truly amazed at how easy it was and I admit I felt a little silly. 

So far, I have tried the Starbucks and Jacobs espresso. My husband and I thought the Starbucks espresso had a much better taste. To us, the Jacobs espresso tasted weak and the Starbucks tasted more like espresso from a coffee shop. Thankfully, the Tassimo discs are available in many flavors and brands for individual tastes.

The New Tassimo T20 Brewbot by Bosch

  • Makes coffee, tea, cappuccino, latte, crema, espresso and hot cocoa
  • Makes drinks in about 1 minute
  • Includes an exclusive flow-through water heater for faster, quieter brewing
  • Space-saving design is ideal for apartments, dorm rooms, and countertops 
  • Colored inserts are available to color coordinate the machine to your other appliances
  • Smart bar code technology allows the brewer to adjust each beverage with the proper temperature, pressure, and amount of water
  • Brewer dimensions: Length: 11.0 “; Width: 7.9 “; Depth: 11.8 ” 
  • 1.5 Liter water tank 
  • $129.99

SPECIAL OFFER:Purchase a Tassimo T20 Brewbot online here and save $25 and get 2 free T DISCS!
Also available at many fine retailers such as Bed Bath & Beyond, Walmart, Target, and more (but the special offer is online at the above link only).

My personal thoughts:  I really like this machine.  I admit that I have not used other pod type machines so I don’t have other experiences to compare it with.  I think this would be great for people that want a quality drink that is easy to prepare without having to pay a barista.  This would definitely save a lot of time and money for those that make that daily trip to the coffee shop.  I was very pleased with the taste of my Starbucks latte.  In my opinion, the discs are a little pricey for my frugal budget but since we have enjoyed the machine, my husband and I have been looking online for lower priced discs.  I would be happy to review and critique different brands of discs. lol  I wish I would have thought to request a particular color of machine.  Although the white machine is nice, it clashes with my black and stainless appliances.  I like that the brewbot has colored inserts that you can purchase to change the look and color of the machine for a more personal look.  Our other espresso/coffee machine has a tank that is not removable and it is a pain to refill so I have found the Brewbot removable tank to be a great feature.  It’s also nice to know that the coffee discs are individually sealed so that you can always experience fresh tasting coffee.  I think it would be nice to use the Brewbot while entertaining.  Friends and family could choose their favorite flavors and they could be prepared very easily.


GIVEAWAY:  We’re giving away one of these machine to a lucky reader. To enter, simply leave a comment telling me about what kind of coffee you like.  Do you like cappuccino, espresso, black coffee?  Just let me know something about your personal preference.

Bonus Entries:  Please leave a comment for EACH one that you complete.  It makes it easier to choose a random winner.

  • Follow @ThriftyMommy on twitter.
  • Tweet about this giveaway (up to 3 times daily).  Please remember to include the word *giveaway* in your tweet.
  • Follow The Thrifty Mommyon facebook.
  • Blog about the contest or post it on facebook.
  • Follow @tassimotaster on Twitter.
  • Put The Thrifty Mommy button in the sidebar of your website.

This contest ends December 19, 2010 is available to those with a U.S. shipping address.  The winner will be contacted via email and will have 24 hours to respond. 

Good luck!

Disclaimer: I was provided with a Tassimo T20 and some discs for sampling purposes.  The thoughts and opinions are mine.


November 29, 2010

Wisk Experiment 3: Oil Stain

A few months ago, Wisk asked me to try out their new Wisk Stain Spectrum Detergent on a few different kinds of stains.  So far, I have tested Wisk on a grass stain and carbohydrate stain.  I have been so impressed with the stain fighting technology that I have been using the Wisk on other stains such as ketchup, ravioli (oh my!) and set-in stains.  (I hope to post more on that later this week.)

Today my assignment was to try Wisk out on an oil stain.  Oil stains include things such as lip gloss, peanut butter, and salad dressing. 

To test the oil stain, Wisk sent me a tube of lipgloss, a towel for blotting, a make-up bag, and another bottle of Wisk Stain Spectrum Detergent.  Hooray! I was glad to get another bottle.  🙂

I applied the lipgloss and blotted my lips onto the towel.  Yes, I know, I put on waayyy too much lipgloss.  It was fruit flavored and it made me feel like I was in high school again.  lol

I applied the Wisk detergent to the stain, rubbed it in for about 30 seconds, and then rinsed the stain. 

On this experiment Wisk took out the majority of the stain.  To me, it appears that it took out all of the oil and not all of the color.  Now I feel a little bad for putting on soooo much of the lipgloss.  I think maybe the color got down into the ridges on the towel which made it more difficult to remove.

I have been extremely pleased with the Wisk.  It is now the first thing I grab for stains.  I am sad that this is the end of my Wisk experiments. 

Click here for a $1.00 Wisk coupon.

Other Wisk Articles:
Wisk Experiment 2:  Carbohydrate Stain (Ketchup)
Wisk Experiment 1:  Protein Stain (Grass Stain)
Wisk: The Then and Now of Fighting Stains

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post, but the thoughts and opinions are my own.


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