Colonial Williamsburg Discount: Locals Get in Free

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Locals can get tickets to Colonial Williamsburg for FREE!!!

Colonial Williamsburg is offering FREE tickets to its Historic Area and art museums to residents many cities in the Hampton Roads are.  They are available to residents of Williamsburg, James City County, York County, Gloucester County, Newport News, Hampton, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk and Virginia Beach August 8th through August 15th.

The free ticket offer is only available at Colonial Williamsburg’s Regional Visitor Center, located at 101 Visitor Center Drive.

The ticket counter is open from 8:45 a.m. until 5 p.m. daily. Proof of residency is required to qualify for free ticket. Members of the military who have temporary residence status should provide military ID and a piece of mail or other document that includes local address. Ticket must be used on the date of issue.

See all the details HERE!

Make sure to see 13 Things to Do in Williamsburg, Virginia & IdeasColonial Williamsburg for Kids!


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How to Master Planning a Frugal Family Vacation

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Planning a Frugal Family Vacation
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Vacations can be incredibly expensive, which is why planning a frugal family vacation may be the right option for you. With admission to the Disney parks at an astounding $99 per person, a family of four might easily spend $1,200 without even counting in hotel rooms, car rental, air fare, and food. Fortunately, there are many ways to travel on the cheap and still have a great time.

Planning a Frugal Family Vacation:

Travel at Off-Peak Times

People always vacation to areas that are warm in the winter and cool in the summer. If you are willing to deal with less than perfect weather, you can take advantage of great deals. Local hotels have a difficult time filling their rooms during the off season, so you can stay in some of the best hotels for the same price you might pay at a budget hotel. Travel to Chicago and New York in the winter, and consider Texas, Louisiana, and Florida in the summer.

Consider Camping

There are great campgrounds throughout the US, and you can even find them close to some of the biggest cities. You can get all the benefits of big city travel while saving on hotel costs by camping. Jellystone campgrounds have many of the amenities you want, and they have low fees for camping. You’ll still have access to indoor plumbing, showers, and more, so you won’t have to worry about roughing it during your trip.

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Plan Your Next Disney Vacation with Cupcake Castles Travel Company {Free Planning & Expert Advice}

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Do you want to experience the magic of Disney?  How would you like to have someone create a custom Disney vacation plan for your family and help you save money for FREE?

That’s right – you get expert advice, travel planning and discount monitoring all at no additional cost to you!

If this sounds too good to be true, it’s not!  Robyn is an independent agent at Cupcake Castles Travel Company who specializes in Disney vacations.   She can help make your Disney vacation dreams come true.

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Freebie Alert: Disney Cruise Line Vacation Planning DVD

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Sign receive your FREE Disney Cruise Line Vacation Planning DVD, Online DVD and/or e-Brochure!

{Click Banner to Get the Offer}

Make sure to read my Disney Cruise Posts:

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Free Rosetta Stone Demo

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Rosetta Stone

Sign up and receive a Rosetta Stone FREE Demo.  My family is currently using Rosetta Stone to learn French.  Je parle un peu le français (I speak a little French) :)

{Click Banner Above to view demo}

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Year of the Staycation: Budget Friendly Ideas to Enjoy Over 90 Cities in the US!

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I’ve teamed up with bloggers across the country to bring your Year of the Staycation!  This is great if you live in these cities or are planning to visit any of these areas and need frugal fun for your family. Find budget friendly ideas to enjoy over 90 cities in the United States!

Mid Atlantic

NW (or all), Connecticut :: Parenting Miracles

Boston (or all), Massachusetts :: Maven of Savin

Central, New Jersey :: Our Good LIfe

Adirondak Mountains and Central, New York :: For This Season

Buffalo/Niagara Falls, New York :: Ann’s Entitled Life

Syracuse, New York :: I am THAT lady

Erie, Pennsylvania :: Growing Kids Ministry

Greater Harrisburg, Pennsylvania :: Family Balance Sheet

Hershey, Pennsylvania :: Good Deal Mama

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania :: Beyond the Cover

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania :: The Coupon “High”

Poconos, Pennsylvania :: Bucktown Bargains

Scranton, Pennsylvania :: Bucktown Bargains


Des Moines, Iowa :: Make the best of everything

Aurora, Illinois :: A Savings WOW!

Central, Illinois :: The Homeschool Scientist

Chicago, Illinois :: Chicagoland Homeschool Network

Naperville, Illinois :: The Sensible Mom

Schaumburg, Illinois :: Ravings By Rae

Fort Wayne, Indiana :: Simplified Saving

Indianapolis, Indiana (Metro Area) :: In Good Cents

Muncie, Indiana (Central IN) :: the daisyhead

Northern Indiana :: So Dough Savvy

Kansas City Area :: Kansas City Mamas

Metro Detroit, Michigan :: Saving Dollars and Sense

Grand Rapids, Michigan :: Give Me Neither

Oakland County, Michigan :: Bargain Shopper Mom

Minneapolis, Minnesota :: Creative Couponing

Rural Minnesota (either Southern our Lake Country) ::

St. Cloud, Minnesota :: Frugal Finders

Kansas City, Missouri/Kansas :: Kosher on a Budget

Springfield, Missouri :: Getting Freedom

Cincinnati, Ohio :: Family Friendly Cincinnati

Columbus, Ohio :: Cleverly Simple

Dayton, Ohio :: Savings Lifestyle: Dayton

Mansfield, Ohio :: The Traveling Praters

NE Ohio :: Raising Lifelong Learners

Northeast Ohio (Canton, Akron, Cleveland) :: Sisters Shopping on a Shoestring

Black Hills, South Dakota :: Little House Living

South Dakota :: Moms Mustard Seeds

Oshkosh, Wisconsin :: Adventures of a Stay at Home Mom


Phoenix, Arizona :: Mom Endeavors

Scottsdale, Arizona :: Saving For Someday

Tucson, Arizona :: Desert Chica Ramblings

Colorado Springs, Colorado :: The Greenbacks Gal

Denver, Colorado :: Bargain Blessings

Helena, Montana :: The WiC Project

Omaha, Nebraska :: Mom Endeavors

Reno, Nevada – Lake Tahoe (Northern Nevada) :: Saving in Nevada


Fresno, California (Central Valley) :: NerdFamily Blog

Los Angeles, California ::

San Diego, California :: Good Cheap Eats

San Diego, California :: Life as MOM

Portland, Oregon :: Frugal Living NW

Seattle, Washington :: Thrifty NW Mom

South Atlantic

Arkansas :: Discovering Arkansas

Washington, DC :: Kidventurous

Clearwater Beach, Florida :: Bargain Briana

Jacksonville, Florida :: Saving The Family Money

Southwest Florida (Ft. Myers area) :: Chaos Is Bliss

St. Augustine, Florida :: Simply St. Augustine

Tallahassee, Florida :: SwagGrabber

Atlanta, Georgia (metro area) :: Hodgepodge

Atlanta, Georgia (metro area) :: The Couponing Couple

Annapolis, Maryland :: The Happy Housewife

Hagerstown, Maryland :: Cheryl Pitt

Asheville, North Carolina :: Paradise Praises

Charlotte, North Carolina :: from our front porch lookin’ in…

Raleigh/Southeastern, North Carolina :: Upside Down Homeschooling

Upstate South Carolina :: The Tween & Me

Charlottesville, Virginia :: How to Have it All

Richmond, Virginia :: Teachers of Good Things

Smithfield, Virginia :: Walking in High Cotton

Virginia Beach, Virginia :: The Coupon Challenge

South Central

Coastal Alabama :: Meet Penny

Huntsville, Alabama :: The Traveling Praters

Northern Kentucky :: Simply Sherryl

Chattanooga, Tennessee :: Living Chic on the Cheap

East Tennessee (Smoky Mountains, Knoxville) :: Finding Joy on the Journey

Nashville, Tennessee :: Montessori Tidbits

Arlington, Texas :: Grocery Shop For FREE

Austin, Texas (Hill Country) :: Ponder the Path

College Station, Texas :: How to Homeschool My Child

Dallas, Texas :: Surviving The Stores

East Dallas, Texas :: Funky Faith Girl

Fort Worth, Texas :: Coupons & Freebies Mom

Houston, Texas :: MomsToolbox

Houston, Texas :: MyLitter

Katy, Texas :: Moms Confession

McAllen, Texas (Rio Grande Valley) :: iLoveMy5Kids

San Antonio, Texas :: Melissa’s Bargains

VABeach Staycation Ideas

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Virginia Beach Staycation & Vacation Frugal Ideas

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VABeach Staycation Ideas

Virginia Beach, VA is a wonderful place to have a family vacation.  Locals know they don’t even need to leave the area for a fun and inexpensive staycation.  You can ride horses in Pungo, stroll the boardwalk at the oceanfront or touch rays at the aquarium.

Virginia Beach has a lot of offer kids (and adults) of all ages!

Virginia Beach Staycation Ideas:

Hit the Beach!

A day at the beach is always fun and budget friendly. Pack your lunch, sunscreen and plenty of water for fun-in-the-sun!

You can visit the bustling Virginia Beach Oceanfront for a day of building sandcastles and swimming. Browse the shops, fish from the pier or gather for festivities around Neptune Park.   The 31st Street playground is next to King Neptune’s Statue, so let the kids play in the sand on a playground for FREE fun!

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Thrifty Thursday: Pack for a Road Trip

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We have been taking more road trips over the past couple of months.  It’s great to get away, but the cost can really add up.  One way to save on a road trip is to pack smart.  Gas prices are already sky high, so we all need to save every penny we can.

Read my 8 Simple Tips to Plan Road Trip & Pack Smart over on my travel site, The Talking Suitcase!

**What are your tips for Road Trips?**


Flying With Kids

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Traveling with kids can be both a fun adventure and unbearably stressful.  If you will be flying with children for the first time – you need to plan ahead to help ensure your travels will run as smoothly as possible.  Here are my Tips for Flying with Children:

1.  Talk about planes and flying in advance.  This is especially true if it’s your child’s first plane ride.  Consider checking out books from the library to help your child become comfortable with flying.  Don’t forget to talk about airplane safety and rules in advance as well.

2.  Allow your child their own carry-on.  Giving your child their own piece of luggage will help them feel more independent and in-control plus have the benefit of entertainment at their finger tips.  I prefer a backpack since kids can be responsible for these without adding something else for Mom or Dad to carry.  For me, having each child with their own “stuff” avoids fights over who gets what first.

3.  What to pack:

  • Snacks – kids want to eat constantly so make sure you can keep their tummy’s from grumbling.  Plus a hungry child is a grumpy child.  Make sure the snacks are easily consumed in flight – fruit, cereal or granola bars, banana bread and treats such as fruit snacks, candy or cookies work well.  If you’re flying during meal time, consider packing a muffin or sandwich.
  • Even if you grab a box of granola bars for $3.49 on your way to the airport – you’re getting 8-10 bars for that $3.49, not 1 bar for the same price in-flight.
  • Don’t forget a napkin for the tray, wet wipes and hand sanitizer.  I am a huge germaphobe – particularly on an airplane.
  • Blanket or jacket – You want your child to be comfortable in-flight.  Additionally, a favorite blankie may help your child nap or feel more relaxed.
  • Entertainment – pack activities to keep your child occupied throughout the flight.  New or forgotten books, coloring pages, crayons, travel games, cards and small electronics are just a few ideas.
  • Don’t over pack – keep in mine the length of your flight and how easily the contents of your child’s carry-on bag could get lost.  Allowing 5 DS games or marbles, may not be the greatest idea.

4.  Expect delays: Flight delay’s happen.  Remember to stay calm and factor in time for these delays in your travel plans.  Getting though security, making flight connections and extra potty breaks also makes everything take longer.  Ensure that you have allowed ample time to get to your destination, so you don’t arrive in a frenzy.

5. Window vs. Aisle Seat:  I see advantages to both of these prime location seats. If you are traveling with multiple children or adults – try to get both seats.  The window seat obviously provides a great view and opportunities for games and using your imagination (look for shapes, farms – some are square and some circle, colors, river lines, landscape variations, who lives there?, etc.).   While having the aisle seat means your not asking a stranger to get up every 10 minutes so your child can use the restroom.

6.  Pack an extra set of clothing.  Yes, your luggage may not arrive when you do.  But I’m talking about in-flight accidents that may require an outfit change.  Your child may get motion sickness, have a diaper blow out or simply spill their drink all over themselves.  It may also be a good idea to pack one of Dad’s t-shirt’s.  That way either parent will at least have a clean shirt if necessary.

*Remember that you can’t take beverages with you through security.  However, most flights offer free beverage service of soda and juice.

This is an example of what my child would have for a short flight:

  • Pencil bag with colored pencils and crayons
  • Coloring/Activity Book
  • Reading Book
  • DS with 1 game  and headphones (I would have 1 other game to avoid it getting lost)
  • Extra Clothes (baggie keeps it together plus could put dirty clothes back in)
  • Small Blanket
  • Snacks in baggie with napkin (I would have hand sanitizer and wet ones in my purse – plus gum for take off)

What are your Tips for Flying with Children?

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