Entries from July 6, 2014 - July 12, 2014

Friday
Jul112014

Baked Ravioli Lasagna

Baked Ravioli lasagna, have to try this!
Ingredients
  • 1 package frozen ravioli, any flavor you like
  • 1 cup store bought marinara sauce of your choice
  • 1 package shredded low fat mozzarella cheese
  • 1 tsp dry basil
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spread a little marinara sauce on the bottom of a small baking dish.
  3. Top with one layer of ravioli, a little marinara sauce and some cheese. Then repeat making another layer.
  4. Sprinkle with basil.
  5. Bake until the cheese is melted and the the sauce is bubbling, about 15-20 minutes.
Friday
Jul112014

Ebates: Free Gift Cards and More

Here’s how Ebates.com works:

* Head over here and sign up for a FREE Ebates.com account
* When you are planning to make an online purchase, go to Ebates.com first
* Browse through all the different online retailers (each online retailer offers a different cash back percentage – look at the % listed next to each store name)
* When you are ready to make a purchase, be sure to click through to the store via Ebates.com (most cash back rewards are credited within 48 hours but some can take as long as 30 days).
* Every 3 months, Ebates will send you a cash back payment via check or Paypal for purchases posted during the previous quarter (note that if you’ve earned less than $5.01 cash back, they will carry over your money to the next check).
* And remember, you’ll snag a $10 gift card to Target, Walmart, Kohl’s or more after you make your first $25 purchase through Ebates.com!

Friday
Jul112014

$2 Kindle Books

Stock up on summer reading with these $2 Kindle books, see them here!
Friday
Jul112014

Strawberry Shortcake

So summery! Recipe from Alex Guarnaschelli:

Strawberry Shortcake
Makes about 12 biscuits

1½ cups unbleached, all-purpose flour, plus some additional for rolling
2¼ tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. granulated sugar
1 tsp. kosher salt
1¼ to 1½ cups heavy cream

1. Preheat oven to 350F.

2. Make the biscuits: In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Sifting not only assures that the dry ingredients will be free of lumps but also mixes them together. Here’s where it gets messy: use your hands to mix together dry ingredients and integrate the cream. Take care there is no remaining flour in the bottom of the bowl. Turn the biscuit mixture onto a lightly floured flat surface and with floured hands, pat the biscuit mix down until it is about 1 inch thick. Note: if the outside edges start to show cracks, cup the outer edge with your hands and push the dough towards its own center. Pat the edges so the dough is a 1-inch square. Lightly flour a knife (to avoid sticking as you cut) and slice the biscuits into 1½ inch by 1½-inch squares. This way, you won’t make scraps and all will be used.

3. Bake the biscuits: Arrange the biscuits (with some distance between each) on a non-stick baking sheet or one layered with a sheet of parchment. Refrigerate them for about 15 minutes to give them “resting” time before baking. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until they start to brown lightly. Remember the biscuits will continue to cook even after they are removed from the oven so if their centers seems a bit moist, that’s good! Better to undercook and let them “rest” a little.

2–3 pints strawberries, hulled and split
3 tbsp. granulated sugar
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
1 tbsp. raspberry jam
1½ – 2 cups whipped cream

1. Mix all of the ingredients except the whipped cream and let it marinate in the fridge for 20-30 minutes.

2. To serve: split the shortcakes, Spoon the strawberries over the bottom half and top with a generous dollop of the whipped cream. Serve immediately.

Friday
Jul112014

8 Good Credit Tips

credit card bill

Paying your credit card on time every month can raise your credit score, and with an excellent FICO score it's easier to qualify for loans and a low interest rate. However, achieving a high credit score is just the beginning. You also need to maintain this score. (See also: How to Rebuild Your Credit Score in 8 Simple Steps)

If you don't know a lot about credit, you might unknowingly do things that lower your score over time. Maintaining good credit isn't rocket science, but you'll need to know the right ways to manage credit.

For a solid place to start, here are eight things that people with good credit never do.

1. They Don't Rely on One Type of Credit

You might feel that it's safer to stick with one type of credit. This way, you can keep your finances simple and avoid unnecessary debt. However, credit scoring models take into account the types of accounts you have, and diversifying accounts work in your favor.

A mixture of different types of accounts shows that you're able to manage multiple debt, which adds positive points to your credit score. A good mix includes a credit card and an installment loan, such as a mortgage, an auto loan, or a student loan.

2. They Don't Wait Until the Due Date to Pay Off Credit Cards

People with good credit know the danger of excessive credit card debt, and they might pay off balances each month to avoid debt. However, these individuals don't always wait until the due date to pay off their cards — they pay by the report date. (See also: Pay Bills Early? Only If You Want to Save Money)

The report date is when a creditor sends updates to the credit bureaus, and paying off credit cards by this date is a smart move for those who use their credit cards heavily during the month, perhaps to rack up rewards points. Let me explain.

Let's say you charge $2,000 to your credit card every month, and you don't pay off this balance until your due date on the 15th. If your creditor reports to the credit bureaus on the 10th of every month, it'll appear as if you're carrying a $2,000 balance from month-to-month, despite the fact that you always pay off the card by the due date. But if you pay off the credit card by the 10th of the month, the creditor reports a zero balance. The less debt on your credit report, the better.

3. They Don't Stop Using Their Credit Cards

Cutting up a credit card might be the answer when you cannot control spending. However, people with good credit never stop using their cards — even if they only charge $10 or $15 every few months.

Some credit card companies cancel accounts due to inactivity, which can affect an account holder's credit score is two ways. A cancelled account might cause their overall credit utilization ratio to go above 30%, which can trigger a drop in credit score. Also, if a cancelled account happens to be the account holder's oldest account, closing this account can eventually reduce the length of the account holder's credit history, resulting in a lower credit score.

4. They Don't Turn Down Credit Limit Increases

You might be shocked to learn that a creditor increased your credit card limit by several thousand dollars. To avoid any temptation, you may even call the creditor to decline the increase. However, credit limit increases aren't necessarily a bad thing. They can widen the gap between your credit card balance and your credit limit. This lowers your credit card utilization ratio and helps maintain a good credit score.

5. They Don't Open Retail Accounts

Getting a retail charge card isn't credit suicide — as long as you apply sparingly. However, people with good credit know how credit inquiries impact credit scores, and they don't arbitrarily apply for store accounts to save 10% off a purchase.

Each inquiry can reduce a credit score by up to five points, depending on the credit history. This might seem like a minor ding, but if you applied for ten accounts in a short period, that's up to 50 points off your score.

6. They Don't Ignore the Fine Print

There is no one-size-fits-all credit card. People with good credit know that terms and fees can vary by credit card company and they read the fine print before applying. This part of the application highlights everything from the introductory rate to balance transfer fees. Knowing the card's terms is how they take charge of their credit. This way, they don't get stuck paying unnecessary fees or a higher interest rate, and they can decide whether a card works for them.

7. They Don't Forget to Monitor for Fraud

Financial experts recommend that everyone order a free copy of their credit reports at least once a year. However, people with good credit don't rely solely on yearly checkups. They're always on top of their credit and they typically sign up for credit monitoring services. These services send an email alert whenever an account is opened in their name, allowing them to catch fraud before it destroys their credit score. (Discover it card offers a free credit score with each monthly statement.)

8. They Don't Co-Sign Loans

People with good credit do not put their credit score at risk. They know that co-signing a credit card or loan can potentially ruin their credit history. Even if the primary account holder doesn't completely default, he might send payments 30 days late, which triggers a negative remark on his credit report and the cosigner's report.

Do you have good credit? What are some things you did to get there? Let me know in the comments below.

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Written by Mikey Rox and published on Wise Bread. Read more articles from Wise Bread.
Friday
Jul112014

Sketchers Shoes Sale: 55% Off

For the next few days, head on over to Zulily.com where they are offering 55% off women's shoes. I spotted tons of great bargains on shoes, boots, sandals, and more!
Some of my faves!
Friday
Jul112014

Diaper Deals + More @ Target- Ends Saturday!

Through Saturday, July 12th, Target is offering $20 Off  a Baby Purchase of $100 or more Target coupon available – just clip the coupon in the Target ad OR text INFANT to 827438.
This coupon can be applied towards the purchase of Newborn Apparel, Furniture, Bedding, Nursery, Training Pants, Toiletries, Diapers, Wipes, Travel Gear, Baby Toys, Car Seats, Bath, Food and Formula, and Infant and Toddler Feeding (excludes infant and toddler apparel and the toy department)!

Buy 2 Select Diapers $24.99 = FREE $10 Target Gift Card
*Pampers or Huggies Super-Packs or Super-Packs Training Pants
*Luvs Value-Packs

Deal Scenario #1:
Buy 4 Pampers Super-Pack boxes of diapers $24.99 each
Buy 1 soft-pack of Kandoo Wipes $1.99
Total = $101.95
Use the $20 off $100 baby purchase Target store coupon (In-ad coupon or text INFANT to 827438)
Use four $2/1 Pampers diapers coupons…
There’s a $2/1 Pampers Cruisers Diapers coupon, a $2/1 Pampers Swaddlers diapers coupon, and a $2/1 Pampers Baby Dry Diapers coupon
And, use the $0.50/1 Kandoo product coupon found here
Pay $73.45
Get back two $10 Target gift cards
Final cost $53.45 total – only $13.36 per LARGE box and basically snagging FREE wipes!

IMPORTANT NOTE – To find the $2/1 Pampers coupons, you’ll need to follow these directions… just headover here and click on the Sign-in link in the upper right corner to log into your account at Coupons.com. Next click on your name in the upper right hand corner to show the drop down menu and finally, click on “Your Profile”, set your zip code to 77477 (Texas) and click “Submit Changes”. Then click back on ANY of the coupon links above and the coupons should show up already clipped.

Deal Scenario #2:
Buy 4 Huggies Super-Pack boxes of diapers $24.99 each
Buy 1 soft-pack of Kandoo Wipes $1.99
Total = $101.95
Use the $20 off $100 baby purchase Target store coupon (In-ad coupon or text INFANT to 827438)
Use two $4/2 Huggies Little Snugglers diapers coupon found here (when you share)
OR use two $2/1 Huggies Little Movers coupons found here (when you share)
And, use the $0.50/1 Kandoo product coupon found here
Pay $73.45
Get back two $10 Target gift cards
Final cost $53.45 total – only $13.36 per LARGE box and basically snagging FREE wipes!

Deal Scenario #3:
Buy 4 Huggies Pull-Ups Super-Pack boxes $24.99 each
Buy 1 soft-pack of Kandoo Wipes $1.99
Total = $101.95
Use the $20 off $100 baby purchase Target store coupon (In-ad coupon or text INFANT to 827438)
And, use the $3.50/1 Huggies Pull-Ups coupons found here (must “like” on Facebook and share coupon)
Plus, use three $2/1 Pull-ups coupons found here or here (when you share)
And use the $0.50/1 Kandoo product coupon found here
Pay $71.95 
Get back two $10 Target gift cards
Final cost $51.95 total – only $12.99 per LARGE box and basically snagging FREE wipes!
* PLUS – earn $1.50 cash back via the Ibotta app for purchasing Pull-Ups at Target!

Thanks Hip2Save!

Friday
Jul112014

Pepsi: Win $10 Itunes Gift Cards, More

Through August 26th, text PEPSI to 699376 to enter the Pepsi “REAL. BIG. SUMMER.” Instant Win Game (note that standard text messaging rates apply). You’ll have a chance to instantly win a $10 iTunes Gift Card – there will be 4,100 winners!