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The 6 best portable washing machines of 2021 under $350

A portable washing machine might be a better option for those who don’t want to take a trip to a laundromat — or have no space for the full-sized model.

More time at home might mean more housework — including dirty dishes from lunch breaks and face masks that need to be washed after wearing, not to mention everyday laundry. While dressing down has become popular during the pandemic, your laundry could be accumulating alongside your workload, to-do lists and other household chores. If you’re in a smaller space where a standard washing machine won’t fit, going to the laundromat could be a hassle with a full hamper. A portable washing machine could be an option to avoid carrying weeks’ worth of laundry to and from a laundromat.

“Most operate like your normal full-sized washing machine, but are suited for those on the move or anyone who lives in a smaller space,” explained Jay Ahmed, the laundry merchant at The Home Depot. “It’s different from a standard washing machine in that the portable appliance can be stored away when not in use.”

CHECK THESE OUT

hOmeLabs Portable Washing Machine

hOmeLabs Portable Washing Machine

$266.99

Featuring a stainless steel tub, this machine can handle up to 6 pounds of clothes at once. The washer also includes two roller wheels in the back, adjustable legs and carry handles. On the LED display, you have the option of five programs — ranging from heavy to soak — three water levels and a lint filter as well. Plus, the machine has a quiet spin function. It has earned an average 4.5-star rating over more than 500 reviews.
SUPER DEAL Portable Compact Mini Twin Tub Washing Machine

SUPER DEAL Portable Compact Mini Twin Tub

$154.99

A bestseller on Amazon, this 2-in-1 washing machine includes separate washer and spinner tubs. The wash tub can hold up to 8 pounds and the spinner can handle up to 5 pounds. You can wash and spin at the same time — a washing cycle can last up to 15 minutes and a spinning cycle can run for 5 minutes or less. This machine has three washing modes — standard, drain and soft — and this dial is in the middle of the washer and spinner timers. The washing machine has earned an average 4.2-star rating over close to 5,500 reviews.
KUPPET Compact Twin Tub Portable Mini Washing Machine

KUPPET Compact Twin Tub Portable Mini

$192.99

This washing machine includes two tubs — one for washing and the other for spinning, which wrings out excess water left in clothes. You can run the two simultaneously. The washer can handle 18 pounds’ worth of laundry and the spinner 8 pounds. You’ll find two separate timers for each. In the middle of the two timers, there’s a wash selector dial that features gentle, normal and drain functions. This washer boasts a 4.3-star rating over more than 7,000 reviews.

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35 best gifts for grandparents on National Grandparents Day

National Grandparents Day — which falls on Sept. 12 this year!

While Mother’s Day and Father’s Day are always marked in our calendars, we often forget to jot down National Grandparents Day — which falls on Sept. 12 this year!

Whether you call them Grammy, Mimi, Gramps or Granddad, your grandparents deserve some extra love once in a while too! And what better time to do so than on their own national day?

To help you make your elders feel extra special this year, we rounded up 35 different gifts that are bound to make them smile. Whether they love to cook, collect jewelry, listen to old tunes or play golf, we’ve found the perfect present to fit any budget for National Grandparents Day.

CHECK THESE PICKS

What I Love about Grandma Book for GrandParents Day

Knock Knock What I Love about Grandma

$16.04

Fill in the Love Book Let Grandma know just how much you love her with this clever “fill-in-the-love” journal. You’ll be able to create a personalized keepsake that she’ll look back on for years to come.

Farm Fresh Spa Experience for GrandParents Day

 1818 Farms Farm Fresh Spa Experience Tin

$16.04

Even Grandma needs some time to relax! Help her create her very own at-home spa with this cute “farm fresh” gift set. It’s handcrafted in Alabama and features products made with goat’s milk, lavender, shea butter and more.



Yeti Rambler 14-Oz Mug

$22.29

Help your granddad keep his morning coffee warm for hours on end with this insulated Yeti mug.



Custom Recipe Bamboo Cutting Board

$22.99

This custom cutting board will make for an extra-touching gift. You can have one of your most sacred family recipes engraved on the front for a personalized touch. Plus, it’s a great way to say thanks for all those delicious meals Grandma has cooked for you over the years.





Personalized Fishing Lure

$21.19

If he likes to fish during his downtime, consider getting your Grandpa this thoughtful fishing lure that can be customized with a loving message.







Baseball Park Map Glasses

$35

If he likes to fish during his downtime, consider getting your Grandpa this thoughtful fishing lure that can be customized with a loving message.

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Celebrity Roundup: Kylie Jenner, Cardi B, Drake & Lil Nas X

Celebrity Pregnancy round-up

PHoto collage of Cardi B and offset, Kylie Jenner, Rapper drake and lil Nas x  in article about pregnancy related celebrity news

Rappers featured prominently in a roundup of pregnancy related news, including some unexpected and unusual references related to Drake and Lil Nas X’s respective album releases.

Kylie Jenner confirmed what’s been speculated for weeks: She’s pregnant with baby No. 2. 

The Kylie Cosmetics mogul documented her pregnancy journey thus far in a moving video she shared on social media on Tuesday. The clip starts off with Kylie holding a positive pregnancy test. She appears to film boyfriend Travis Scott’s reaction to the happy news as he can be seen hugging her in the bathroom. 

Kylie also reveals exactly how she told mom Kris Jenner — with Stormi handing the momager an envelope filled with sonogram photos. Read the Rest

Kylie Jenner with pregnant belly exposed in maternity share announcing her second pregnancy

And the hip hop community had a few odes to pregnancy recently.

Rapper Cardi B and her husband Offset from the rap group Migos welcomed their second child, a son.

The “Up” singer shared a tender Instagram photo of her and Offset sitting on a hospital bed cradling their newborn. She captioned the photo, “9/4/21” with a set of three emoticons including a blue heart, dinosaur and tiger.

The couple’s 3-year old daughter Kulture Kari was born on July 18th after they secretly married in September 2017.

Similar to her first, Cardi kept most of her second pregnancy secret, this time revealing it this past June during a performance at the BET Awards in June.

Drake in a side by side graphic from the album cover for his latest studio project "Certified Lover Boy" featuring multicultural pregnant women emojis

Rapper Drake released his much-anticipated latest album, “Certified Lover Boy” with a cover art that features a grid of 12 multiracial “pregnant woman” emojis wearing differently colored shirts.

British artist Damien Hirst designed the cover which Internet sleuths have stated looks to be a cross between the artist’s Spot Paintings with monochromatic canvases covered in rows of dots painted in complimentary colors and colourful dots and his work, sculptures of pregnant women is what seems to have inspired Drake’s CLB. 

Photo of rapper Lil Nas X in a faux maternity shoot with him wearing a fake prosthetic bayb bump, a crown of white roses holding a bouquet of white roses in an article about celebrity round up

Rapper Lil Nas X stirred up some noise when he decided to do a maternity style photo to announce the birth of his latest album project. In photos, featured in a PEOPLE magazine spread, the “Montero” performer wears a prosthetic bump.

There was a lot of buzz and chatter over the social media display, including among women advocates who said it make a mockery of pregnancy, child birth and fertility struggles.

Maybe to difuse some of the hate, the “Old Town Road” singer invited expecting women to share a photo of themselves and their bump along with their CashApp account

Instagram photos from rapper Lil Nas X's faux maternity shoot wearing a prosthetic baby bump
Instagram:

How to Get College or Private High School Text Books Cheaper

stack of text books in an article about how to get collorge or private high school text books for cheaper

As students heading back to college and private high schools, parents are stuck with the quandry on how to pay for books.

Fortunately, there are a lot more options available to cash-strapped families these days.

One: RENTALS

My family has used Amazon Textbook Rentals and rented one book that cost close to $200 book for just $35.  What a huge saving, huh?!!

photo of journal and coffee cup on orange saucer in  in an article about how to get collorge or private high school text books for cheaper

Two. Purchase the Looseleaf Version of the Textbook

Another option is loose leaf purchases.

One would think it would be a violation of US and international copyright laws to copy a book and sell the pages but not so.

Over the past few years, publishers realized they need to be flexible with their market and so have contracted with third party resellers to permit them to sell the loose leaf version of books. Hooray!

You simply purchase a binder and insert the pages and you can save over $100 dollars on a text book.

We got a Government and Politics textbook that cost $70 new for just $22 from Barnes & Noble!  

overhead flatlay photo of laptop, and books and eyeglasses  in an article about how to get collorge or private high school text books for cheaper

Three. BUY USED BOOKS

A lot of the rental books platforms also sell used books have standards and require the books to meet a minimum quality.

They describe what it means for a book to be in Fair, Good, Very Good and Excellent condition. HOWEVER, be very careful to get the correct edition. Some sites are not explicit in disclosing that it’s an old edition, the teacher’s edition or the workbook versus the text. IF the price is too low, be aware and make sure there isn’t a reason for a too ridiculously discount price. We got burned this way.

Also, if you get used books from third party re-sellers, be aware that a lot of them ship ground and therefore it could take up to three weeks for your books to arrive depending on where they’re being shipped from. 

If you have the option to select among several re-sellers, pick one located closer to where you live to shorten the delivery time. 

Finally, some of these outlets have few copies so it is possible that there may be overlap and the book may not be available then canceled. I mention all of this to let you know to be mindful of these factors when you go this route. 

Here are a few of the sources we have used:

Barnes and Noble

Biblio.com,

ValoreBooks.com,

Alibris.com,

Abe Books.com.

BookScouter.com

ThriftBooks.com

andChegg.com

someone handing over a textbook to someone else

Four. Attend Book Swaps

Our sons’ school offers a book swap where students moving on to the next grade can sell their books at heavily discounted prices to underclassmen.

They then get to go around to the other cars parked in the lot and purchase books they may need from older students.

A lot of schools offer this cost-saving option. You can also haggle and bargain. One mom was selling two novels for $5 each but I convinced her to give them to me for $7.  It was the end of the swap so she was running out of options anyway.

Even if your school doesn’t offer one, check out nearby schools and attend theirs but make sure  you are getting the correct textbook and edition. This can be tricky.

Five.  Buy Digital TextBooks

Finally, a lot of teachers and professors allow students to consume the digital version of textbooks on a Nook or Kindle or another digital device.

Once a person owns a digital copy, he/he is usually licensed to download and print out pages needed for a class. Amazon’s Kindle has an entire website to e-textbooks. Enter the ISBN of the text, Title or Author and hit search!There are so many wonderful ways to save money on textbooks these days that you really have no excuse to pay full price…well unless you can afford it and your kid prefers a shiny brand new, unblemished text in the most ideal form, then go for it!

No judgment! If you got it, make it work.

Good luck, parents!

pile of textbooks

10 HALLOWEEN FACE MASKS FOR KIDS THAT ARE FRIGHTFULLY FESTIVE

If you ask your kiddos what their favorite part of the fall season is, we are almost certain Halloween will pop up on the list somewhere between leaf piles and warm cups of cocoa. While this year may look a little different, there is no rule that says your tot can’t get into the festive mood with these Halloween face masks for kids.

Children in Skeleton Masks

We know that the health and happiness of your tiny candy enthusiast is your primary concern and these Halloween-themed face masks will help them keep this hocus-pocus holiday alive.

With ghoulish prints like witches and jack-o’-lanterns, your kiddo will surely be in a spellbinding mood. We’ve rounded up the most spooktacular Halloween face masks for your little goblin that will address your family’s COVID-19 concerns and adhere to recommended guidelines, all without ruining the spirited season. Plus, when it’s cold, they’re kind of great, right?

CHECK THESE OUTS

A child in an animal Print mask

WeCare Disposable Animal Print Face Masks for Kids (50-Pack)

$23.98

At some point, your kid will probably go as a leopard or zebra for Halloween. This mask is perfect for that. It’s also perfect for jazz dancer costumes, and cool kids all year long. Three-ply paper masks for under $25? Count us in
reusable Halloween Facemasks

Reusable and Washable Fabric Cloth Face Mask

$23.98

The spooky season is a mix of cooler weather, festive outings, and a heavy dose of pumpkins and ghosts. This set of three masks pulls together all of the things your kiddo has to look forward to this autumn, including creepy jack-o’-lanterns. The pre-washed fabric features three comfortable layers, too.
Reusable and washable fabric cloth face mask

Reusable and Washable Fabric Cloth Face Mask

$12.36

If your little one trick-or-treats at night, why not get them this two-layer, wired-nose, glow-in-the-dark Halloween mask? Not only will they stand out in a crowd, they’ll look cool doing it. 

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25+ Casual Fall Outfits Inspo For School, Weekend

These Casual Inspo Outfits will keep you cool, comfy, chic and stylish for school and the weekend

As a blogger, I spend a lot of my time behind a computer.

When I’m not shuttling my brood back and forth to events, games, school, practice and such, I am plugging away trying to deliver the most relevant and up-to-date news, information, fashion style trends, pregnant or parent celebrity gossip, and tips for first time, new and veteran parents.

My style is comfy, casual, chic. I live in yoga pants, leggings, over sized sweaters, canvas shoes and ballet flats. I may jot to the gym or meet up with a friend for coffee but none of these excursions require me to dress up much.

That’s why I was drawn to the casual Korean school kid and BTS-inspired, styling of clothing on Polyvore when I spotted it on Pinterest

I realize that they are also excelent selection for female high school and college students!

I pulled together my five fave looks among the various looks the online clothier had put together and I tagged products from my partners at Shopstyle in case you are a blogger or other fan of comfy style and want to grab some of these pieces for yourself or get a closer look.

I have a lot of these pieces already in my closet and that’s how I knew they were made with me in mind! Ha!



38 Outdoor Games to Make With the Family This Summer

We know what you’re thinking: Your cozy (read: small) backyard is too tight for the kids to play regular lawn games. If that’s the case, try more compact games like checkers, Jenga, and tic-tac-toe with sweet summery painted rocks as game pieces (talk about inexpensive!). Not only are these a blast to play, but the whole family can get in on the DIY game-making action.

If you’re lucky enough to enjoy a sprawling property big enough for a kids playhouse and more, you might go for outdoor games for kids that require wide open spaces, such as a football toss, a giant lawn matching game, or miniature golf with a full course. Set up a collection of games carnival-style (with prizes for the kids!) for a neighborhood get-together or family reunion.

So get your space out back in shape with best backyard ideas that won’t break the bank, and prepare for some good ol’ competition with these fun, kid-friendly DIY outdoor games. Last one inside wins!

Giant Lawn Matching Games

$19.07

Customize these durable squares with any pictures or patterns you like. If you’re into the summer-themed version shown here, this blogger includes downloadable stencils in her tutorial to re-create your own.

Cornhole

$27.99

Make your own game of corn hole, and paint the board with fun and bright colors to match your style. Make your own bean bags by sewing together some squares of fabric and filling them with dried beans or lentils, or buy them in a colorway that matches your boards.

29 Best Thanksgiving Gifts for Hosts and Hostesses, Family, and Friends

Sure, it’s about the food! But Thanksgiving also means showing everyone you love just how grateful you are for having them in your life. Maybe someone you know had an especially tough year (and haven’t we all?), and you want to cheer them up. Or maybe it’s time to say thanks to all the unsung heroes in your life, from your kid’s teacher to the mail carrier.

If you’re a guest at someone’s house this time of year, don’t forget to bring along a little something for your host or hostess to show how much you appreciate their hard work to pull together the Thanksgiving menu (C’mon! You know your grandma wouldn’t want you to show up empty-handed!). These gifts, big and small, make lovely acknowledgements of each person’s special place in your world. Add a handwritten card with one of our favorite Thanksgiving quotes or Thanksgiving Bible verses for the perfect finishing touch. Whether it’s something for the amazing home cook, the wine lover, the baker, and more, we have something special to give to anyone you want to say “thank you” to this time of year.

HERE ARE SOME IDEAS

Wine bag

Happy Thanksgiving Wine Bag

$9.99
This cheery wine tote is an easy way to dress up any bottle. It turns an ordinary gift into an extraordinary one!
Thanks Giving Gift Idea

Olive Wood Bowl

$34.99
This beautiful handcrafted bowl makes a lovely serving dish for nuts, grapes, and other snacks. 

Sound Organic Sparkling Water

$29.99
Tired of bringing the same old bottle of wine to every holiday party? Mix it up and consider arriving in style with a case of this organic sparkling water infused with tea and botanicals. The packaging is fun and festive and the company donates a portion of their sales to organizations that fight for better nutrition and food access, so you can feel good about your gift from more than just the bubbles. 

9 Best Blenders of 2021 at Every Price Point

The top-rated blenders for every budget (and smoothie!).

Whether you’re whirling up bananas and berries for smoothies or making a pitcher of frozen margaritas, a quality blender should be able to process your ingredients into smooth, creamy perfection. In the Good Housekeeping Institute Kitchen Appliances and Technology Lab, we’ve tested more than 75 blenders over the years to find these high-performance blenders.

To test these blenders over the years, we ground about 10 pounds of whole coffee beans, blended nearly 30 pounds of frozen strawberries, and pulverized over 2,000 ice cubes. We also made kale smoothies, milkshakes, and frozen drinks. When testing, we rate the helpfulness of the owner’s manual and evaluate how easy each model is to assemble, use, and clean. We also consider how noisy each blender is while operating.

Finally, we check how well blenders resist staining from tomato sauce, and measure the damage after 14 cycles in the dishwasherThese are the best blenders you can buy in 2020, according to a combination of testing and in-home use.

3X Bluicer Pro

$399.95

We love this smart combination appliance for blending or juicing! The juicer attachment works just like Breville’s popular centrifugal juicer that performed very well in our juicer test – it juiced apples, carrots, kale, and celery without any pulp. It aced our separation test in which we store the juice in the fridge for three days to see if and how much the juices separate. The blender is powerful and makes thick smoothies. In our tests, we had to experiment with the blender speed to achieve drinkable smoothies.   

SmartPower Duet Blender/Food Processor

$75.54

This highly popular Cuisinart blender/food processor combo has a low-profile 40-ounce glass jar, which has the benefit of not discoloring, scratching or absorbing food smells like a plastic jar may. This 500-watt blender is not the most high-powered. It features seven blending and processing options that are clearly marked and easy to use. We love that it comes with a compact food processor for chopping, stirring, and even shredding. All parts are dishwasher-safe.  

Blender Combo

$139.99

This well-priced and high-powered blender comes with three jars: a 64-ounce pitcher for large batches, and two different personal-sized cups (32 ounces and 24 ounces with a handle.) Both cups have lids that make it easy to take your smoothie to-go. It features an “extract” button that blends smoothies in preprogrammed variable speeds. We blended kale smoothies in all three jars – there were no flecks to be tasted! It also blasted through frozen strawberries effortlessly to make a delicious, evenly processed daiquiri. The base is not much larger than previous NutriBullet bases and it has suction cups on the bottom that reliably prevent it from shifting around. Just remember to unscrew the personal blending cups from the base instead of the cups–it’s easy to accidentally make a mess. 

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Polarized Sunglasses of 2021

It’s officially summer and you know what that means — it’s time to break out the warm weather essentials. While you’re stocking up on sunscreen and sun hats to protect your skin this summer, there’s also another important area that needs protection: your eyes!

Sunglasses are a fun and easy way to express your style. With so many different colors, sizes and styles out there, there’s no shortage of options to choose from. Why not take eye protection one step further? That’s where polarized sunglasses come in.



Wowsun Polarized Sunglasses

$ 15.99

Don’t be afraid to try sunglasses with bold colors and prints like these yellow leopard print frames with purple lenses from Wowsun! There are 14 different color and pattern combinations for single pairs and 18 options for packs of two.
Kaliyadi Semi-Rimless Polarized Sunglasses



Kaliyadi Semi-Rimless Polarized Sunglasses

$ 12.99

These semi-rimless frames are an Amazon bestseller and it’s easy to see why. They have UV400 protection to keep your eyes safe and come in plenty of styles and colors.



 Carfia Retro Round Polarized Sunglasses

$ 18.99

If you’re going for a more retro look, try these sunglasses with a rounded frame. They are made with TR90, a durable and lightweight thermoplastic material that comfortably conforms to your face. You can choose from over a dozen available options.

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