Take Advantage of Your State’s Tax Free Shopping Days

Take Advantage of Your State’s Tax Free Shopping Days

Back to school shopping is my favorite shopping season of the year since I work on Christmas and birthday gifts all year long to make it less painful on the budget.  One of the best ways to save another 7% to 10% right off the top (depending on where you live) is to plan ahead and shop on your state’s tax free shopping days. Many states have tax-free shopping weekends in August, where customers don’t pay sales tax on items like school supplies, electronics and clothing.  Use the list below to find out if your state has a tax-free weekend and what items it exempts. Most of the information below is courtesy of TaxAdmin.org and I’d recommend verifying each state through the links provided.

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6 Strategies for Shopping Consignment Sales

6 Strategies for Shopping Consignment Sales

We have a local Mom2Mom kids consignment sale that is held twice a year at the fairgrounds and I always make sure to hit each sale so I can stock up on kids’ clothes for the season. It’s such a thrill to leave each consignment sale with a load of great deals on quality used clothes, shoes and toys for my kids. At every sale I’ve been able to buy great brands of gently used and sometimes brand new items for a fraction of their retail price. Since I’ve got five kids and a limited budget consignment sales are a fabulous way to give them extended wardrobes without breaking the bank.  As an example, at this month’s sale I purchased 34 clothing items – jeans, pants, shirts, hoodies and skirts – plus a couple boxed toys for $126.  Score!

Here are some of favorite tips for finding exactly what you need and getting the best deals when shopping consignment sales:

Shop With A List

Take a list of the things you know you need with you – for example, our little boys get lots of hand me down jeans and shorts from their big brother but few of the shirts survive so I got them lots of shirts and no pants, just a few new pairs for my big boy.

Get Perfect Fitting Shoes

Draw around your children’s feet on a piece of paper and take it with you if you’re planning to shop for shoes. The shoes are never in any semblance of order at these sales and it can be hard to figure out the size. With drawings of your kids’ feet you’ll be able to quickly and easily determine if they’ll fit without having to bring your kids with you to the sale.

Leave The Kids At Home

Consignment sales are usually pretty packed with people and the displays can be pretty busy so you don’t need any other distractions.  Find somebody to watch the kids so you can concentrate on the hunt for deals without lots of begging to hit the toy aisle.

Bring A Basket

Bring something to carry the goodies! Many sales ban the use of strollers while shopping so bring a laundry basket (or maybe hubby) along to hold all the finds while you’re hunting for more. If you’ve got a rolling basket or cart then bring it along so your arms don’t get tired.

Double Check Everything!

Some clothing items look great from the front but have stains or rips on the back, missing buttons or broken zippers and you don’t want to find that out after you’ve left the sale.

Participate In The Sale

Volunteer or sell your own items at the consignment sale so you can shop early. I’ve done this before and plan to again at the next sale – if you volunteer to work a sale or if you sell your own gently used things then you typically get to shop before the sale is open to the public and you’ll have best pick!  Plus I always figure it’s a bonus if I end up making more in sales than I spend.

Take Advantage of Your State’s Tax Free Shopping Days

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photos-back-to-school-shopping-close-up-teen-girl-shoes-image43431528

Back to school shopping is my favorite shopping season of the year since I work on Christmas and birthday gifts all year long so it’s less painful to the budget.  One of the best ways to save another 7% to 10% right off the top (depending on where you live) is to plan ahead and shop on your state’s tax free shopping days. Many states have tax-free shopping weekends in August, where customers don’t pay sales tax on items like school supplies, electronics and clothing.  Use the list below to find out if your state has a tax-free weekend and what items it exempts. Dollar amounts in parentheses indicate the maximum cost for which an item can be tax-free. Most of the information below is courtesy of TaxAdmin.org and I’d recommend verifying each state through the links provided.

Alabama: Aug. 7-9, clothing ($100), computers ($750), school supplies ($50), books ($30)

Arkansas: Aug. 1-2, clothing ($100), school supplies (no limit listed)

Connecticut: Aug. 16-22, clothing and footwear ($100)

Florida: Aug. 7-16, cchool supplies (no limit listed), clothing ($100), supplies ($15), computers ($750)

Georgia: July 31 – Aug.1, school supplies (no limit listed), clothing ($100), supplies ($20), computers ($1,000)

IowaAug. 7-8, clothing ($100)

Louisiana: Aug. 7-8 All Tangible Personal Property, which usually refers to stuff that you could take with you somewhere, such as furniture, art, clothing and household items ($2,500)

Maryland: Aug. 9-15, clothing  and footwear ($100)

Mississippi: July 31 – Aug. 1, clothing and footwear ($100)

Missouri: Aug. 7-9, clothing ($100), computers ($3,500), school supplies ($50)

New Mexico: Aug. 7-9, clothing ($100), computers ($1,000), computer equipment ($500), school supplies ($30)

Ohio: Aug. 7-9, clothing ($75), school supplies ($20), instructional material ($20)

Oklahoma: Aug. 7-9, clothing ($100)

South Carolina: Aug. 7-9, clothing (no limit listed), school supplies (no limit listed), computers (no limit listed)

Tennessee: Aug. 7-9, clothing ($100), school supplies ($100), computers ($1,500)

Texas: Aug. 7-9, clothing, backpacks and school supplies ($100)

Virginia: Aug. 7-9, clothing ($100), school supplies ($20), energy star products ($2,500), hurricane preparedness items ($60), generators ($1,000)

Photo Credit: © Sandshack33 | Dreamstime.comBack To School Shopping Photo

Back to School with Kohl’s and Disney Apparel

Disclosure – I participated in an Ambassador campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Kohl’s. I received promotional items and product samples as a thank you for participating.”

Kohl's Disney Collection Sofia the First

There are eighteen days until my five kids go back to school, not that I’m counting or anything (wink, wink). They’ve been in summer camp all summer and they’re really having a great time and go on lots of field trips every week, but I think they’re ready to go back to school too, and I’m positive that the budget is beyond ready.

I’ve been busy getting all the school supplies that they’ll need ready, but I think the most important thing is that they have something new and “cool” to wear the first day. I remember when I was a kid and how excited I was to put on a new outfit with new shoes and a new backpack and head to school to make some new friends and see all the old friends that I’d missed over the summer. That always got me excited to be back in school and I (sometimes) envy the kids when I see how excited they are to be doing all the back to school shopping.

My kids are all huge Disney fans and my girls absolutely love Sofia The First so they are really going to enjoy these new outfits for the first day of school. It always amazes me how different the quads are from one another, even though they were all born within two minutes. One of my girls is a “girly” girl and loves dresses and fingernail polish so she’s going to adore this Sofia the First tiered dress with a tulle skirt. My other girl is more of a tomboy and loves animals of any sort so she’s going to wear these bling leggings with the tiered skirt and Sofia the First “I love my animal friends” shirt.

There is a whole new line of Sofia the First character apparel now available at Kohl’s as well as a new line of Jake and the Never Land Pirates clothing that my boys are going to go crazy for. They are available in kids sizes 4 to 7 and toddler sizes. Check them out online or in store and let your kids experience the adventurous spirit of wearing Disney clothing by Jumping Beans.

Kohl’s New #MagicAtPlay Disney Clothes & $100 GC Giveaway!

Disclosure – I participated in an Ambassador campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Kohl’s. I received promotional items and product samples as a thank you for participating.”

Kohls #MagicAtPlay

I am super excited to announce that I’ve been chosen to be a Kohl’s Disney Ambassador because I’m a huge Kohl’s fan and my five kids all love anything and everything Disney! Kohl’s is one of my absolute favorite places to shop because they have a huge selection for the whole family and for the house, they always have great sales, and they often have coupons for even better deals. In fact, I did the good majority of my Christmas shopping there and at Kohls.com, and it’s usually my first stop for birthday and other holiday gifts as well. I went shopping there today to check out Kohl’s new line of Disney character clothing by Jumping Beans.

Kohl's Disney Clothing

My boys adore their new Mickey shirts and shorts and I fell in love with all the fabulous Minnie skirt outfits and dresses. I wish they were available in my size! There are so many terrific choices for both girls and boys, and the new patriotic collection is perfect for upcoming summer holidays like Memorial Day and the Fourth of July.

Kohl's Disney Clothing

The new Disney line inspires both fun and imagination and is available exclusively at Kohl’s for both boys and girls in sizes 4 to 7 in a full range of active wear, play clothes and dresses. The selection is outstanding and the quality of the items is terrific. I’m thrilled to be able to giveaway a $100 Kohl’s gift card so one lucky reader can pick out some adorable Disney pieces of their own.

To enter to win just do any or all of the things listed in the Rafflecopter widget below. This giveaway will end at midnight on Friday, May 2nd.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Pink Is In For Spring Fashion!

Disclosure – I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Kohl’s. I received a Kohl’s gift card to facilitate my post and as a thank you for participating.”

Kohls Spring Fashion

Wow – after this cold winter it’s hard to believe that Spring is finally here, but I think that means it’s time for an updated wardrobe! Kohl’s Spring Fashion Hangout provides great tips on what trends to be on the lookout for right now. From the color pink to dresses and roll-cuffed denim they share it all! I tend to wear a lot of black or grey but I’’m a huge fan of pink and I love to add bold colors like pink in my accessories or with a great pair of heels. This season I’m going to take Kohl’s’ advice and wear pink in a big way, plus I have my eye on that Lauren Conrad dress! Watch the Kohl’s Spring Fashion Hangout and tell me what trends you can’t wait to wear this season!

Spring Clothes Shopping at Kohl’s

Disclosure – I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Kohl’s. I received a Kohl’s gift card to facilitate my post and as a thank you for participating.”

I consider myself to be a frugal shopper but I really love nice things and quality clothing so I like to shop for classic pieces that will last quite awhile and that I can mix and match with things I already have in my closet. Today I went to Kohl’s to pick up a few things and I ended up with a Dana Buchman knit shirt on sale for $22, a seamless Apt 9 tank for $11.99 and some Lauren Conrad taupe jeans on sale for $40.50. These three pieces were just under $75 and I can wear them with all sorts of other things that I already own. Check out the video above for some different ways that I plan to wear the three pieces I bought.

While at Kohl’s today I noticed that a lot of the new spring fashions are available in light neutral colors like taupe, peach, pink and seafoam green. A great way to get your wardrobe ready for spring without spending a fortune would be to pick out a few key pieces in the spring colors that you can wear in a lot of different ways. For example, I love that the Dana Buckman top I bought has several of the spring colors in it as well as black so I can mix it up with black pants, skirts and tanks that I already own. The neutral color Lauren Conrad jeans I bought will go with so many things and I love the cut and fit of the jeans so I imagine I’ll be wearing them a lot.

Kohl’s is one of my favorite places to shop, in fact I did most of my Christmas shopping there, because they have such great sales going on all the time and a huge variety of products, plus if you have a Kohl’s charge card you get special discounts every month in the mail.

Back to School Spree ThredUp Giveaway

Over 100 wonderful bloggers are joining together to bring you some fabulous prizes in the Back to School Spree Giveaway hop. Our fabulous sponsor thredUp is providing a generous prize package that you can enter to win in the widget below. Once you’ve completed your entry then hop on through the list below to check out all the other terrific prizes you could win

ThredUp is basically an online consignment store, where you can go and purchase gently used clothes at fabulous prices or you can clean out your kids closets and earn some cash in the process! I recently purchased six shirts and a pair of pants for just under $21 and I was super impressed not only with the quality and condition of the clothing, but also with the service and the packaging. My items arrived wrapped in tissue paper with a handwritten ‘enjoy’ on the label, and my girls have sure enjoyed wearing their new clothes.

Get a $10 credit at thredUp just for signing up for a free account and you can also take 20% off any order during August with the promo code AUGUST20. That’s a hot deal just in time for your back to school shopping! One lucky reader is going to win a $50 box of clothing from ThredUP plus a personal kids’ style consultation with Carly Fauth, Chief Mom at thredUP. Simply do any or all of the entry methods listed in the Rafflecopter widget below and you’ll be entered to win. This giveaway ends at midnight on Friday, August 31st.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Don’t forget to click the links below to enter as many of the other amazing Back to School Spree giveaways as you would like! I highly recommend bookmarking this page so you can spread out your entries over a few days. Good luck!


Disclosure: Formula Mom, 7 on a Shoestring, and the Back to School Spree bloggers are not responsible for sponsors that fail to fulfill their prizes.

Get 30% Off Your Entire MakeMeChic Order!

Isn’t it time to get a little something for yourself?  Through midnight on Christmas Eve you can take 30% off your entire order at MakeMeChic when you ‘like’ them on Facebook to get the promo code.  Their prices are already pretty fabulous to start with – for example the boots shown above are regularly $24, but you can grab them for just $16.80 through midnight tomorrow!  I also found a faux snakeskin belt for $5 and a blazer for $19.60 that I think I need, and I have been pretty good this year!

Mom2Mom Consignment Sale Haul!

I had planned to get a few items together to sell at this fall’s Mom2Mom consignment sale and then ended up consigning more than 350 items!  In addition to making a few bucks off the gently used clothing that my kids have grown out of, one of the best benefits for me is the ticket they give you to come in and shop early before the sale is open to the public.  My ticket got me in at six last night which is terrific since the sale doesn’t open to the public until tomorrow.  I spent $249 and came home with all of this:

(2) Easy Bake Ovens (barely used still in boxes)

(2) Polly Pockets sets (new in boxes)

(3) K’Nex cases

(1) Nascar car carrying case

(35) Action figures and toy cars

(10) Transformer toys

(2) Pair boots

(2) Pair shoes

(2) Jewelry / trinket cases

(1) Purse

(1) Old Navy hoodie (new)

(1) Gap winter coat

(9) Girls pajamas

(5) Girls shirts

(1) Cardigan sweater

(5) 2 pc girls outfits

(7) Girls pants

(2) Skirts

(4) Boys shirts

(4) Boys jeans (Levi’s & Old Navy)

(6) Boys pajamas

(5) Girls uniform pants

(2) Boys uniform shorts

(5) Boys uniform pants

That’s a total of 117 items for an average of $2.12 a piece!  Whoohoo, I’m thrilled and the kids are super excited about their “new” toys 😉  I’ve even put away a few of the new things for the quads’ upcoming birthday next month.