$7 No Sew Pom Pom Pillow Cover

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I’m soooooo pleased with how this little project turned out! I was a little anxious that it would be more difficult than it was, but trust me, it was e.a.s.y. And, I absolutely love it!

 

I saw this great tutorial for this Christmas Tree Pom Pom Pillow over at On Sutton Place, and thought it might be more difficult than I was ready for. I’m horrible (horrible) at yarn crafts (I’ve tried for at least four hours to make one of these without any luck. Ugh.)  So, the thought of making Pom Poms from scratch had me just a wee bit anxious! I thought surely I could find ones already made at our local craft store, but they only carried really bright colors, and I knew I wanted something a little more subtle.

 

I decided to try it out, and spent a few minutes watching this tutorial, and within minutes figured out how to get started. 

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Here’s what I used:

  • pillow cover from Hobby Lobby – $5.99 after 40% off coupon
  • hot glue gun with glue sticks
  • yarn (a $3.99 roll of yarn would make a jillion pom poms – at least!)
  • small piece of ribbon for the tree trunk (I just used some that I already
  • Total = less than $7 because the yarn will be used for several more projects and I had everything else on hand

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I made the pom poms following this tutorial (I used about 35), and then followed these instructions to glue them onto the pillow case. (Really, this was so simple – just glue them on in a tree shape and you’re almost done!) And I’m loving using pillow covers to change out my pillows seasonally (you can purchase pillow inserts for around $9.99 at Walmart or your local craft store), which is a great way to save. Success!

 

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Looking for more Christmas DIY ideas? Here’s what I’ve done around here so far this year (I have a really fun one coming this Friday ~ can’t wait to show you!)

I’d love for you to join me over on Pinterest (I love that place!)  If you have a blog and have done a little fluffing in your home, I’d love to see it, so leave your link in the comments section. Also, if there’s a craft you’ve seen on a website that you’re hoping to make, feel free to share that link as well (I’m always looking for new ideas!)

 

See previous home projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!

 

Interact with 165,000+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!

 

 

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No Sew Pillow Case

 

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Okie dokie folks, here goes.

 

I don’t really love this project. 

 

You win some, you lose some, right? ;)

 

ButI do love the idea of this project, and think it has potential. Does that count?

 

I saw this idea over on Pinterest to fluff up plain pillow covers using fabric scraps. Since I’m not a girl who sews ~ at all ~ I headed to Hobby Lobby where they have knock-off Pottery Barn pillow cases for $5.99 after their weekly 40% off coupon.

 

I spent $3 on fabric scraps (I purchased 1/8 yard of three different colors), as well as $6 on Wonder Under (with lots left over), and came home all ready to start fluffing.

 

 

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Here were my mistakes:

  1. I didn’t leave enough room at the edges of the pillow cases and have probably opted for four trees instead of five ~ or skinnier trees. When I put the pillow insert back in the pillow, it just looks crowded I think?
  2. I didn’t really consider my favorite colors when working on the project. I love (LOVE) the colors in this pillow (right on my Goodwill chair.)  My mother-in-law used to decorate homes, and once told me to pick a fabric I loved and decorate around that ~ so smart! So, hopefully I’ll find the right look, and may just change things out a bit (but it was fun to try!)

 

I do think this is a super easy way to get just the look you want, and love that you’re not limited to someone else’s designs. I’m planning to tackle it again, and we’ll see how it goes! Here’s what I did for my first attempt though in case you’d like to try it out too  . . .

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Cut fabric into trees – I didn’t really have a pattern, just kind of played with it until it felt right.

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Then I lined them up . . .  again and again and again . . . until everything was where I wanted it to be.

 

I think if I’d just left more room on the edges it would have turned out so much better, but for my first try it wasn’t too bad? I cut pieces of Wonder Under and followed the directions on the package to iron the fabric scraps on.

 

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So there you have it. ;)  Nothing fancy at all, but pretty simple even for a not-all-that-crafty girl like me. Now, in a perfect world I’d know how to sew and would just sew the fabric on, but this was a great way to try it out!
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Have you done any Christmas crafting lately? I’d love to hear what you’re up to! Here are a few more ideas I’ve been working on at our house . . .

 

 

I’d love for you to join me over on Pinterest (I love that place!)  If you have a blog and have done a little fluffing in your home, I’d love to see it, so leave your link in the comments section. Also, if there’s a craft you’ve seen on a website that you’re hoping to make, feel free to share that link as well (I’m always looking for new ideas!)

 

See more previous Friday Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!

 

Interact with 163,000+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!
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$20 Ornament Wreath (+ Determine Your Stock Up Price On Christmas Ornaments)

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I have a little girl who’s home sick today so we’re taking the next few hours off to snuggle a bit. Watch later today for more penny pinched posts! ;)

 

I’ve seen all the cute pictures of ornament wreaths over on Pinterest, and my girls and I decided it was time to make one ourselves this weekend! Of course, being the penny pincher I am, I had to do the math to figure out how to get the least expensive ornaments. (Yup, I’m a nerd that way.)

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Here’s what I figured out:

The size of the ornaments were almost identical (the silver ornaments were from the Dollar Tree, all the colored ones were from Michaels), but I liked that Michaels offers quite a few more colors to choose from (our Dollar Tree had silver, gold, red and green.) So, when you’re heading to price ornaments this Christmas, $.20 per ornament is a good baseline price ~ if you find them for less than that, you’re getting a steal! ;)

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I thought surely I’d have enough to do two wreaths, but was only able to fill out one wreath with all those ornaments (I did have a few leftover, but not enough for another wreath.) Here’s what I used:

  • Wreath form $6.99
  • (3) packs ornaments from the Dollar Tree $3
  • 50 pack ornaments from Michaels $11.24
  • Hot glue gun & glue sticks
  • Total = $21.23

 

Considering some of them sell for over $100 on Etsy (yikes?), this was a better deal than I realized! ;)

 

To make ours, I just started with a basic foam wreath, and added ornaments around the outside edges using a hot glue gun. 

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Then I filled the inside of the wreath up, and finally added ornaments on top of other ornaments to fill in any spaces where you could see the foam wreath.

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If I was doing it again I’d purchase a box of smaller ornaments to fill in those holes (I think they would look great, and it would cost a little less to make it!)

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Here are a few wreath tutorials if you’d like to more in-depth directions:

And you may also want to try making this simple fun mesh wreath as well! Looking for more penny pinched Christmas decorating ideas? Check these out:

 

See previous Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!

 

Interact with 160,000+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!
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Monogrammed Burlap Table Runner

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Can I just tell you how thankful I am that burlap is trendy right now? ;)

‘Cause it’s cheap (ahem, penny pinched.) And it’s versatile. And it even looks great as you transition from Thanksgiving to Christmas.

And, it handles a Sharpie marker just fine. ;)

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See? ;)

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To make a similar runner, here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 yards burlap (it comes in tons of great colors if you don’t like brown) – mine was $4.78 after my 40% off Hobby Lobby coupon
  • a pair of scissors
  • a stencil (I used one I had from the burlap banner a few months ago)
  • a sharpie marker (I ended up using a grey one that I found at the last minute in my junk drawer – any color will do!)

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Just cut your burlap into the size that you want (watch this video to see how to easily cut burlap in a straight piece – I learned that trick from the worker at Hobby Lobby and it makes cutting burlap so much simpler!)

Then just fray the edges by pulling off a few strands, and add your monogram with your stencil. Success!

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You can also see how I made wreaths our dining room chairs for just $3 at the Dollar Tree, and stop back Tuesday when I’ll add in another penny-pinched decorating idea for Christmas. I’d love to hear what other tips you have on frugal decorating too this Christmas season!
I’d love for you to join me over on Pinterest (I love that place!)  If you have a blog and have done a little fluffing in your home, I’d love to see it, so leave your link in the comments section. Also, if there’s a craft you’ve seen on a website that you’re hoping to make, feel free to share that link as well (I’m always looking for new ideas!)

 

See previous Friday Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!

 

Interact with 161.000 Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!

 

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$3 Dollar Tree Christmas Wreaths

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I’m hoping to add in a frugal “fluff up” post on Tuesdays throughout November (in addition to our regular Friday Fluff Ups), because I have so many ideas and sharing them with you kind of keeps me accountable to actually doing them! No promises you’ll see them each week, but it’s worth a shot. ;)

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I’m just a wee bit excited that Christmas (and Christmas decorating!) is right around the corner. ;) As I’ve got a new house to decorate in all different colors this year, I’ve been hunting down frugal ways to update our Christmas decor without breaking the bank, and the Dollar Tree is definitely helping me to get started.

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I’ve always loved homes in magazines where you see small wreaths on the back of each chair in the dining room. But, those wreaths get expensive fast, so I was trying to think of a way to add them on a penny pinched budget. When I found these berries last week at the Dollar Tree (and remembered I had a few Dollar Tree grapevine wreaths from a project a few years ago), I knew it would be pretty easy to make this project work.

 

Here’s what I used:

  • 2 stems berries from the Dollar Tree = $2
  • 1 small wreath from the Dollar Tree = $1
  • ribbon I had already at home (it was on sale when I purchased it 50% off at Hobby Lobby)
  • florist wire

 

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All I did was pull the stems off the main branch (and got rid of most of the leaves from the berries), then wired each stem around the grapevine wreath. Each wreath took about fifteen minutes to  make, and was just the easiest way to fluff up plain dining room chairs!

 

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Watch Friday as I’ve got a few Sharpie Marker plans in the works (so excited!), and let me know if you have any frugal ideas for decorating for Christmas (I love hearing from you!) You can also check out my Christmas board on Pinterest where I have all kinds of ideas popping up.  Goodness it just gets me excited about the Christmas season! ;)

 

I’d love for you to join me over on Pinterest (I love that place!)  If you have a blog and have done a little fluffing in your home, I’d love to see it, so leave your link in the comments section. Also, if there’s a craft you’ve seen on a website that you’re hoping to make, feel free to share that link as well (I’m always looking for new ideas!)

Don’t miss how I decorated an entire tree with ornaments from the Dollar Tree ~ I love that place!) ;)

See previous Friday Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!

 

Interact with 160,000+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!

 

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My Goodwill Finds

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I hate selfies. Like, HATE selfies. And I even hate the hand on your hip look, but it does make you look skinner. And I like looking skinnier. Just wanted to get all that out there before even starting the post. ;)

 
I think I have a Goodwill addiction. 

 

Because my children have afternoon activities several days a week near a local Goodwill store, I happen to sneak it at least once (twice?) each week and am loving finding little treasures occasionally. I don’t buy very much when I go (and often leave empty-handed), but I’m loving having another easy way to save!

 

Here are a few of the fun things I’ve found the last few months. . . 

 

1) The orange sweater in the picture above: Lands End, $3.

2) The denim jacket in the pic above: Ann Taylor Loft, $5. (I have a denim jacket that I wear all the time that I paid $49 for at the Gap several years ago but it’s a very dark wash. I was thrilled to find this lighter one!)

(Note: I’m so fickle about what I like in clothing and have no sense of style at all – so for me shopping Goodwill for a few clothing items is a great way to change out styles without busting our clothing budget. I’ve probably only purchased 5 or 6 items at Goodwill so far and brought them home for a good washing before wearing, but I’ve bring pretty pleased with my finds!)

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3) These silver plated dishes, each $1. I’m hoping to fluff up our dining room for Christmas using silver and white along with fresh greenery from our yard, so I thought these would be a few fun additions.

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4) Maple ladderback chair, $2.50. It’s in pretty rough shape but I think a little wood glue can sturdy it up, and I’m not sure how I’ll refinish it. I like the basic color of it as it is (and a few folks have cringed as I’ve painted furniture recently), so I’m not quite sure how this one will end up. But, for $2.50 I couldn’t pass her by. ;)

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5) Wash basin stand, $6. This is the one I’m not so sure what I was thinking, and I very well may paint it to see how it fluffs up and then even try to sell it (even in a yard sale!) I thought it might be fun to add to our guest bedroom, and when I saw this almost exact one sold for $165 on Etsy I figured it was worth the chance. (This is definitely a replica piece so I won’t feel bad painting it one bit ~ and it may turn out okay in the guest room to hold towels if I can figure it out? We’ll see.)
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6) File Cabinet, $3. Okay, I really really really don’t like this one at all, but when we moved we left behind our office with built in filing cabinets, and my husband said we really needed at least something to get us through until we build new cabinets here. I’ve hemmed and hawed about how to set up my office and just haven’t figured it out yet, and with Christmas season fast approaching I know it’s not going to get settled on until next year. So, for $3 I can live with these, and we can at least organize some of our things that have been packed away in boxes. (I’m seriously thinking about painting it blue just so it makes me happier ~ but really, everything in my house can’t be covered in blue, right?)

 

So, there you have it. I promise we’ve got plenty of room for these items (I don’t want to start feeling like a bad episode of Hoarders!), and because I’m not emotionally tied to any of it I’ll be okay to donate it right back to Goodwill when they’re finished serving their purpose here.

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Have you found anything fun at Goodwill or other thrift stores recently? I’d love to hear about it – leave a comment to let me know! You can also see what I fluffed up last week at Goodwill ~ yup, I’m loving that store. ;)

 

 

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163 Christmas Ornaments For $50 (But Who’s Counting?)

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(These pictures do not do these items justice – I promise when they’re on the tree it’ll look so much better but I hurriedly took the pics with my iphone before the kids got home from school!)

Dollar Tree Christmas decorations are out in full force, and I scored big this week! I made a quick run in just to see what they had, and came out with a small Christmas haul. ;)

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Everything in our new home is very pale and neutral, and while I’ve loved our last Dollar Tree Christmas Tree, I knew those colors wouldn’t work here. I found this beautiful silver and white tree over on Pinterest, and am working towards switching over to those colors this year (while sticking to a budget!) A few days ago my sweet husband made the mistake of saying “I can’t wait to see how you’re going to decorate here this Christmas” which for me clearly meant “You get to buy anything you want to decorate as long as you don’t go really nuts.”;)

 

So, for a whopping $50, I scored ONE HUNDRED AND SIXTY THREE ORNAMENTS for our tree. I’m not quite sure where it’s going to go or what else we’ll need, but I’m thinking we’re already just about there! (We’ll also have our normal family tree, but this one’s my perfect little decorating tree – ’cause you just can’t get enough Christmas around here.)

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Here are a few fun things I noticed while shopping (all for $1, of course.) 

 

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(I love those reindeer!)

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Do you use Dollar Tree decorations at home on your tree? I’d love to hear your favorite finds – leave a comment to share!

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Simple Spooky Halloween Treats

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My friend Cathy shared these cute “spooky” snacks on her Facebook page, and I thought they were way too cute (and easy) so I had to share them with you! All you need is pretzel sticks and string cheese for the brooms, apples, peanut butter and marshmallows for the teeth, and mandarin oranges with a sharpie for the jack-o-lantern.

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I just loved these (and have all the items in my kitchen to surprise my kids with them after school today too.) You can also have fun making these cute Jack-O-Lantern Quesadillas - such fun simple treats to enjoy this Halloween!

Thanks so much for the smart idea Cathy – I love it! ;)  See more penny pinched recipe ideas over HERE.

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Michael’s: Save 70% Off Halloween & Fall Items

 

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Michaels is having a huge clearance sale on some fall and Halloween items, and there are so many fun items included in the sale! You can also save 50% off any one regularly priced item when you print your coupon over HERE. If you have any parties going on at your child’s school or other activities, this is an easy way to save!  Here’s a peek at what I found today . . .

 

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After clearance pricing $2.99

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Fall Berry Wreaths just $4.49

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Foam Capek kits just $.87

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Halloween Baking Supplies as low as $.59

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Halloween Crafting Kits just $2.69

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Halloween Baskets $2.99

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Fall Decor just $3.09

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Ashland Accents as low as $1-2 after 70% off sale

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Baskets on clearance 50% off – as low as $4-$5

And here are just a few fun finds I noticed in the dollar bins (love those!)

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Have you found any great deals on fall products at the craft stores? Leave a comment to share your finds!

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How My Seven-Year-Old’s Perspective Changed

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Good.ness.

 

Can I just promise you what a blessing giving is?

 

Last Friday night, as I was packing for a trip, my seven-year-old snuck around our closet and came across some hidden treasures for our Operation Christmas Child Shoebox. (Remember when I found a bunch of clearance items at Target last month to give? Yup, she found it too.)

 

Her eyes lit up, and she was so excited because she just knew she’d hit the new-toy-jackpot. I explained to her though that the treats weren’t for us, but rather for us to share with kids who might not have any Christmas without them.

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Oh my. That girl was mad.

 

She didn’t get it, and absolutely knew she was deserving of every trinket in the box. Honestly? She was a wee bit irate that none of it was for her. (And, honestly? I was a wee bit irate with her for not getting that she needed absolutely none. of. it.)

 

I stopped my packing, pulled her up in my arms, and tried to explain a little bit more about the program and who would be receiving those tiny gifts. (Even though we’ve filled Operation Christmas Child Boxes for years, she still needed the reminder.)

 

Then I grabbed my laptop, and we sat down in the middle of the floor of my closet and watched a few of the Operation Christmas Child videos.

 

My girl’s heart changed. completely.

 

I encouraged her to separate the items into a few different boxes, and goodness, watching her expression soften and change to excitement for someone else’s gift melted this momma’s heart.

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“They’re gonna love our stuff,” she said.

 

“I’m glad that I’m helping this year,” came next.

 

And finally “My heart just feels so happy right now momma.” 

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She then decided to spend a little of her own money to buy them a few extra gifts this year. ;)

 

Folks, I have no idea where your finances are at right now, but if you’re in a place where you do have some extra to give, I encourage you to find just the right place to share this year. Whether it be packing a box with your kids for Operation Christmas Child, donating to a local food pantry, or even just giving of your time to help someone in need, you will be blessed more than the one you’re giving to will. Promise.

 

As a family we’ve struggled a bit recently with gratitude, and there’s nothing like giving to someone else in need to completely change our perspective. And, while I think traveling on mission trips to share the good news with others is wonderful, I also believe there are seasons in our lives when there is simply so much good we can do right here at home. With the power of the internet, our children can get a glimpse of ways to give abundantly to those who live in a completely different world than our own.

 

Looking for more posts like this? Here you go:

 

 

 

 

 

 

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