5 Easy Ways to Cozy Up Your Home Without Spending Any Money This Christmas



Ready or not, the holiday season is upon us. And even though I get stressed trying to accomplish all the things that need to get done during the holidays, it is my absolute most favorite time of the year. And getting our house ready for Christmas is something I look forward to all year!

*Disclosure* If you are new here, you should know that I am always trying (and usually not succeeding) to stick to a budget.

So I try to find easy diy ways to make our house look great and feel cozy for the holidays without spending any money. Not to say I don't buy anything, mind you. I do. But the majority of my decorating comes from things we already have around our house already.

These are some of my favorite tips on how to decorate your living room for Christmas without buying anything, if possible.

Candles 

Nothing cozies up a room faster than lightly scented candles. Try using white pillar candles of different sizes on a large plate or tray as a simple but charming table centerpiece.

Throws and Pillows

Cozy knitted throws and pillows on your couches will instantly add a welcoming warm touch to your home this winter

Potpourri

DIY Holiday Potpourri is a wonderful way to make your home warm and inviting all season long. Try this easy Christmas potpourri recipe.

Pine Cones

Pine cones make wonderful cheap DIY decorations for the holidays. Go for a walk and collect as many as you can. Place them in baskets, vases, bowls and place them throughout your home.

Holiday Books, Games and Puzzles

A totally free way to add in some cozy holiday decorating is by checking out holiday themed books from the library. Put a pile of two or three books on your living room table or side tables.

If you have any puzzles or card games lounging inside closets, take them out and put them around your living/family room.

But, there is more. Lots More.

The Best Easy DIY Holiday Decorating Ideas On Pinterest.



5 Last Minute Thanksgiving Desserts That Scream Cute




Need some easy last-minute desserts for Thanksgiving? Here's 5 kid-friendly Thanksgiving desserts, no baking required, that are loaded with cuteness (and some sugar, of course.)

Your guests will think you worked on these recipes all day. No one needs to know the truth, however. It will stay between us, right here on the blog.



Turkey Pops 

Credit: Sarah Jones

Kids will love these Oreo Turkey Pops desserts. No baking or mixing required. You assemble this cute turkey using Oreo cookies and assorted candies, and the result: cuteness on a stick.


Pumpkin Patties


Credit: Trish @Mom On Time Out

Trish, from Mom On Time Out, had her five-year old help her make these sweet Pumpkin Patties dessert. So if you have some bored little ones needing something to do, here is a no bake, no fuss, quick last minute Thanksgiving dessert you and your kiddos can put together in a jiffy!


No Bake Pumpkin Charlotte Dessert


Credit: My Baking Addiction

If you are looking for a no bake pumpkin pie recipe, here it is! Luscious pumpkin pie with yummy lady finger cookies.


Easy Peasy No Bake Chocolate Acorn Cookies





Cute chocolate acorn cookies  are so easy to make and fun to eat. This recipe uses melted chocolate (so, you will use the microwave for a minute or two, but no baking required here, promise!) but other versions use chocolate frosting instead. These cookies will no doubt be gobbled up quickly, so be sure to make plenty!

Sort of Homemade Turkey Cupcakes (Shhh...).




If you are really running short on time, but still need an adorable dessert for Thanksgiving, you could have the kids decorate store bought cupcakes using this turkey cupcake recipe from Six Sisters Stuff as inspiration.
(No one needs to know about the "store-bought" part. Shhh...)

Fun and Inexpensive Holiday Decor That Will Make You Smile

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Decorating for the holidays and staying on my Christmas budget is actually fun for me in a way. I know that may sound weird, but this seems to be the one time of the year when budgeting is not stressful. The decorating part, I mean. The shopping on a budget is another story, LOL.

There are so many great ways to make a home look cozy and holiday ready without spending much money at all. You can find so many awesome homemade Christmas decorations on Pinterest. Plus, I love those home tours that I come across on there. Those beautiful homes decorated for Christmas give me so much inspiration (even though I may not be able to do all the gorgeous stuff they do, I still can come up with my own variations, kwim?)

But a girl's gotta buy something new for the holidays each year. So here are some of my favorite holiday finds this year so far. These decor items are all under $25 at Amazon, and some are priced under $10!

This Christmas tree pillow cover is under $2 on Amazon right now.



This cozy holiday throw is perfect for snuggling under when it is cold outside.



Festive and farmhouse pillows ~LOVE. Each pillow costs less than $10.




How cute are these snowman refrigerator door handle covers? Can you tell I love snowmen??



This Santa bathroom set would be so cute in a guest bathroom or a kid's bathroom!




I wanted to buy everything, but I am on a budget, don't ya know. So I only chose one. Can you guess which one??

GBSELL Pillow Cover Christmas Tree Square Pillow Case,1818“ (B)

Ultra Plush Christmas & Halloween Themed Fleece Throw Blankets - Assorted Styles (Snowman & Snowflakes)

Red White Christmas Buffalo Checkers Plaids Linen Square Throw Pillow Cover Decorative Cushion Shams Pillowcase Love Cushion Case for Sofa 18 x 18 Inch

Phantoscope Decorative Christmas Throw Pillow Cover with Grid Background (Letter)
Happy Winter Snowman Appliance Handle Covers - Set of 3

D-FantiX 3D Nose Santa Toilet Seat Cover Set Red Christmas Decorations Bathroom Set of 3

And since my budget for actually buying decorations is tight, you know I had to also find some awesome and easy easy diy homemade Christmas decoration ideas  as well. Hope you see one or two you want to make too!

5 Easy Budget Friendly Dinners When You Have No Budget

I don't know about you, but at my house these days, any extra money is being saved for Christmas. And that means that my already tight food budget is being stretched even more than usual. I swear, we spend more money eating every month than on anything else! But this month, I have to curb that spending, or my Christmas shopping budget will go out the window!




My goal is to make as many cheap easy meals from now until I finish my holiday shopping (except for Thanksgiving, of course!) as I possibly can by using ingredients that are already in my pantry.

Because anytime I can skip the grocery store, I know I am saving money. And I look like this:


Even though I do have some pretty frugal dinner recipes already, I definitely need more. So this last week I have been on a budget-friendly-dinner-ideas-fact-finding mission. (Try saying that 3 times. I dare you!!)

I wanted to share my top 4 favorite dinners I have now added to my collection.

Homemade Pizza (Using Incredibly Inexpensive Homemade Dough)


I realized as I made my merry way through the web, that I can be making homemade pizza way cheaper than buying frozen pizza or ordering pizza. I mean, I really kind of knew this, of course, but just always pushed this little fact way back in my mind because it is just so much easier to pick up the phone. Yep, I am the worst when it comes to getting on a budget and sticking to it, don't ya know.

But after spending time visiting An Oregon Cottage, I came across Jami's under $1 homemade pizza dough recipe, and I knew I had to change my pizza ordering ways. This recipe is fantastic, and I heartily suggest you check it out if you don't have an amazing homemade pizza dough recipe yourself already.

Making the dough is easy and best of all, quick and cheap. If all you have in your pantry is a can of tomato sauce and some spices, whipping up a simple pizza recipe will be a breeze. Of course you can always make it fancier with more ingredients, but heck, even a basic homemade pizza is a cheap quick meal kids love.

Black Bean Burgers Ala Oatmeal

Picture from HappyHerbivore.com

Oh my gosh, this is one of the simplest, cheapest meals ever. Make delicious healthy Black Bean Burgers for dinner using black beans and that oatmeal sitting in your pantry. I am willing to bet the kids as well as grown-ups in your house are gonna love these and ask for more.

Seriously, you need to try this recipe from the Happy Herbivore. It is cheap. It is healthy. And it is so easy!

The Pioneer Woman's Black Bean Burger recipe is another one you might want to try. The picture alone will make you drool:

Picture From ThePioneerWoman.com

Looks ah.maz.ing., doesn't it?? I would suggest checking out her recipe too. You will need a few more ingredients, but chances are you already have some of them in your pantry and fridge already.

P.S. If you are not a fan of oatmeal, you will be happy to know this recipe does not use any!

Easy Healthy Taco Casserole


If you love easy family dinners that are budget-friendly, then you must try this Taco Casserole recipe from Amy at Chew Out Loud. It is perfect for when you need to make dinner for a large family on a tight budget.

Savory Minced Meat and Noodles Dinner

Picture from Kidspot.com


My boys gave this recipe two thumbs up (which believe me, is not something that happens a lot in this house.) And the best part - this dinner will cost you about $10 to make!

Besides the ground beef, you need noodles (try using Top Ramen noodles in this recipe!) canned peas, carrots and onion. Even when you add salad or rolls, this is a healthy cheap family dinner.

And since you gotta have dessert, right?? Here's a couple of easy 2-ingredient desserts for after dinner!