Save Money on Fabulous Accent Pieces for Your Home

Whether you are just starting out and need to save money due to a low budget, want to re-decorate because you are tired of the same old décor, or you just have some plain walls that need some love – you can do it all on a thrift store budget!

Thrift shopping is not only a great way to save money – but it can also be a lot of fun. The thrill of finding that perfect thing for your home, for pennies on the dollar. Who wouldn’t love doing this? The thing about thrift store shopping – you must have patience and a willingness to hunt for that perfect thing.

I have found that one of the BEST places to find those perfect unique treasures is my local Goodwill store! They not only have some great unique items, but their prices are always reasonable. We also find that they frequently have sales that slash their prices even more. It is a total win!

My Goodwill

When you’re at the big box retailers – you know you are grabbing up something other people have too. And even at the for-profit thrift stores, while you might see some nice unique items, their price tag tends to be a bit steeper than what you find at Goodwill – so you aren’t really going to save money.

And as a bonus, over 313,000 people in the United States and Canada connected with jobs or earned employment using Goodwill organizations’ career services programs this past year. And more than that – tens of millions access the Goodwill education, training, and online learning services that Goodwill offers to strengthen their job training skills. As a non-profit, they are dedicated to helping create jobs and providing on-the-job training for many who would find employment opportunities scarce without Goodwill’s help.

So – have an open mind and get yourself ready to shop! Remember, if you’re crafty, there are tons of ways to spruce up and refurbish pieces to make them new again. If you’re one of the lucky people who has more than one Goodwill store near you – be sure to hit them all up!

Here are some great Goodwill finds from just the last couple of weeks.

Outdoor and Patio items – this was a really fun find! Unfortunately, by the time we got there, it was already sold.

My Goodwill Saving Money Finds

Lamps and Lampshades can be so much fun to DIY!

My Goodwill Saving Money Finds

Photo frames, photos, and canvas paintings can be used as is or restored in so many ways.

My Goodwill Saving Money Finds

We found a TON of different kinds of decorative vases – some in wood, some in glass.

My Goodwill Saving Money Finds

Unique pieces of furniture can really be fun to restore – if it is your first time doing a DIY restoration, you can bet you can find something awesome at a bargain to get you started.

My Goodwill Saving Money Finds

All kinds of baskets – I can think of so many things that I could do with these.

Save Money at Goodwill

Google DIY canning jars – there are about a million things, right? Look at these jewels!

Save Money at Goodwill

Do you have some amazing finds and restoration products you’ve found by shopping at Goodwill? I would love to see them! Share them with me on social media using the #ShopGoodwill hashtag!

Neighborhood Toy Store Day This Weekend

Why shop for toys locally instead of at a big chain?  The reasons are as many and varied as the toys that you can find inside your toystore, but my personal favorite is that there is just better customer service most of the time.  The shops really get to know the area that they reside in, and their customers and what they like.  And if you can’t find what you are looking for, they will get it for you.  Many shops even offer awesome extras like gift wrapping and party invitations (which you can do online or have your child make “wish lists” for relatives who would like a few ideas to choose from).  I love all the options- and they toys are of good, quality material I know I won’t have to take back and exchange because they broke in a week.

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Neighborhood Toy Store Day

Did you know this Saturday, November 9th, is Neighborhood Toy Store Day?  Perfect reason to get out and support those who support your town.  If you would like to find an event near you, go to

You will find unique and different products then you would at a box chain, as well as the benefits to the community such as jobs, community support, a thriving neighborhood, the availability of specialty brands that can be harder to find, a wide variety of educational (yet still fun) toys your kids will love to get their hands on, and even environmental benefits like less traffic and carbon use.  Need some more reasons to shop locally?  Take your kids inside- you won’t be overwhelmed immediately and stressed out, ready to leave as soon as you get what you came for.  You won’t even mind browsing for a while (you might actually enjoy it- promise).

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You can find many of the ASTRA’s Best Toys for Kids in local stores, since the quality is better, and ASTRA only chooses the best and most intriguing toys for kids.  Non-Profit organization ASTRA helps parents and people with kids in their lives easier by compiling a list of the year’s best toys that they can refer to, based on a panel of 650 expert judges.

Some of the included toys this year are (click here for the full list of toys)-


Squigz are fun little suckers- as you apply pressure to two or more, the air goes out and they connect to each other.  They also connect any solid surface, flexible and sticky- but not “sticky” with the gross factor.  When they pull apart, they POP with quite a sound.  Creative and fun, you and your child can build creations, cars, houses, horses, spaceships- you name it.  Or just make a lot of popping noise (which may not at first sound enticing, but how much fun do you have with those plastic popper sheets you get in the mail?  Don’t deny it!)
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Why I Love My Neighborhood Toy Store

Whenever possible, I prefer to shop both locally and at non-big-box chains, as anyone who follows me on Foursquare already knows.  You get more personalized (and often better) customer service, a variety of toys you don’t always find in chains, and the quality of the merchandise that is available is often of a higher quality then you can find in larger chain stores.

One of our favorite toy stores, and one I have written about before, is The Learning Express of Montclair, NJ.  They have the nicest sales staff, really cool (and educational, fun) toys stocking the shelves, and never (not even once) have I bought a toy from them that broke within a year.  (The one that broke after a year was inflated much too  much by an enthusiastic 4 year old.)

Gift wrapping is available, the team that works there actually knows A- what products they have in stock, B- where to find them, and C- what to suggest if you need an idea or what you are talking about if you come in with a vague idea of what you are looking for and don’t know the actual name.  Imagine that!  An informed, caring staff.

Our local toy store also has nearly all of ASTRA’s Best Toys for Kids available.  Non-Profit organization ASTRA helps parents and people with kids in their lives easier by compiling a list of the year’s best toys that they can refer to, based on a panel of 650 expert judges.

Some of the included toys this year are (click here for the full list of toys)-

Bunny Peek A Boo

learning games for kids

In our house, my husband and son love games. They love when we get to have our special game nights. I am always on the look out for new games that we can add to these. Bunny Peek a Boo will be a new regular for us, even if it is meant to be a 1 person game.

  • 1 Player Games
  • Multilevel
  • Easy Storage
  • Durable

The Smart Games company has a large variety of games for your children. They are great because they can all be played with just one person, or you can easily adjust for more people to join you.

About Bunny Boo:
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