Wednesday, August 27, 2014

~ Discount Diva ~ Breaking it Down ~ Session 4 ~ Baby Gifts & Dollar Tree Addicitions ~

This " Breaking it Down " installment will cover budget friendly baby gifts and my current addiction to the Dollar Tree . That's right kiddies ! Momma's got a addiction and she ain't ashamed of it !
My name is Stacie and I'm addicted to the Dollar Tree . I believe my highest love language towards others is gifts . I lllllllllooooooooovvvvvveeeeee sending someone a surprise piece of mail or showing up unannounced with a little prize whether it be home made , purchased or a little of both . This will quiet possibly be the 100th time you've read this , but my gift giving motto's are " It doesn't have to cost much to be worth much " and " It's the thought that counts not the cost " , so when I give  a gift both of those sentences run through my mind . A few others are........

Breaking it Down : When giving a gift I also consider things like , 1. How well do I know the person ? Obviously the better you know a person the easier it is to pick out something for them . 2 . Am I giving out of obligation or for the joy of giving ? If it is out of obligation perhaps a nice card will be best . I don't know about you , but I feel like I can tell when an act of "kindness" is forced . 3 . Is trying to figure out what to give becoming a struggle ? Giving is suppose to be a joy not a weight on our shoulders . 2 Cor. 9:7 - " Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, [so let him give]; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver " . I am sure you have heard that verse used in every tithing sermon  you've ever heard , but one of the reasons it's so frequently used , is because it's true . 4 . What could this person really need that God could possibly use me to provide for them through this gift ? When considering what someone might need it isn't always something tangible . There have been times I have sent something as simple as a fun pen , tube of lip gloss , or even just a sincere note and it turned out to be worth more than if I had sent something that cost $100.00 to the one receiving it . Philippians 4:19 - " But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus " . Though , lets just be real for a second , I mean........who wouldn't love $100.00 showing up in their mailbox unexpectedly ?! Feel free to use these questions the next time you are invited to a birthday party , baby or wedding shower . You may find that it helps you a great deal in deciding how to celebrate your friends / family via gift giving .

These jars at one time contained jelly , pickles or
even mayo . But once the product was gone I gave them a
thorough soaking and cleaning prior to repurposing them .

Once cleaned I poured paint on the inside and rolled the jars
until everything was covered to my satisfaction . I then
created some designs on the outside , sprayed in and out
with a clear coat spray paint and then added some
twine that I had on hand . I think they ended up rather cute
and not so "baby" that they couldn't be used elsewhere .
As I mentioned in my post about Wedding Gifts , it seems that it is the season for wedding showers , baby showers , and bachelorette parties . I literally feel like every week I am getting a new text message or phone call that someone is engaged or pregnant . In the last 3 weeks and in the next 2 I will have had 3 friends give birth . Three of the little ones are girls !! If there is something in the water I refuse to drink it . LOL !! With all these new little one's coming into the world at the same time Auntie Stacie has had to get resourceful with her gift giving . In this post I made some jars to hold all those little things you need to keep by the changing table . To go along with that gift I also made a fun little picture frame , using the word laugh as a focal point and a comic strip as a boarder . I figure there are gonna be late nights and early morning when a worn out parent made need a little reminder to find the humor in it all . I imagine a half asleep father putting the diaper on backward or something like that . I'd laugh . With this gift I also added to the basket a few items that I have only come across at the Dollar Tree , a box of disposable bibs and a box of disposable diaper bags (for the dirty diapers) .  These items in this gift they have become a staple in my baby shower gift giving . I figure the disposable bibs will come in handy once you have a toddler on your hands and are eating out . I would think put the disposable bib on them , let them make their mess and leave the bib in the trash with your tray at the end of the meal . The diaper bags I am told are really handy also for when you are out and about . No one WANTS to leave a stinky diaper in someone's trash can so , these bags help to keep the stink and mess to a minimum . One friend of mine actually uses doggie bags . You know , the bags people carry to pick up pup pooh when walking their dog . I thought that was a great idea too !!
Final product . Basket , disposable bibs & diaper bags came
from the Dollar Tree . Everything else I had already on hand
just waiting to be used for something like this .
In my more recent gifts I have started to love the idea of gifting a starter set of dress up items . I know that a new born will not be able to use these things , but when she gets to the age of 2 or 3 she will be very excited to already have a few items to play pretend with . I also think dress up items could be fun when doing a new born photo shoot . These items come from the  Dollar Tree too . I was amazed at all the cute things I found while cruising the toy isle for tiara's and tutu's . I have given this gift in one version or another at least three times and have yet to get negative feed back . I think every momma and daddy imagine their little girl dancing around with fairy wings . It's just a very little girl thing to do.....and big girl . I totally own a pair of fairy wings.....and a tiara....STOP JUDGING ME!!
All items pictured are from
the Dollar Tree .
In this baby gift there are little pink hangers ( for little pink clothes !! ) , a momma rubber ducky with 2 baby ducky's , a tiara , set of fairy wings and a tutu . Not pictured is a awesome ice pack shaped like a tiara (even princesses get owies now and then ) , and a wand . Throw in some disposable bibs and diaper bags and you are good to go !!! Also from the Dollar Tree I purchased this lavender reusable bag . I know these pics are all girl gifts, but they also have fun boy dress up stuff too . I made note of items such as badges, guns , animal masks, varied vests for ninjas , military , etc . for future little boy birthday or baby shower gifts . You may be questioning the quality of these items if they only cost a dollar , well , so far I have had no problems or complaints . However , if something does break or rip that is another bonus to having only spent a buck . No real loss ! Plus , I believe the dollar tree has a good return policy if you ever needed it . Just be sure to read the print on the back of the receipt or to ask an associate if that is a concern of yours .
Not the best picture , but I used the tutu for fluff
instead of the tissue paper you would normally use inside of a
gift bag . I think it is all too cute and now lil' sis can tote all
her favorite dress up items wherever she like.....ya know,
when she can walk .
I know that some people will read all of my Dollar Tree praise and turn their noses up at the very idea , but something that most people don't realize is that the same manufacturers that create the brands you find at the grocer or drug store also make products for stores such as the Dollar Tree . They are sometimes given a different but similar brand name and if you compare ingredients you will find they are identical or extremely similar . For example , pediatric electrolyte fluid , does it remind you of anything you've maybe purchased elsewhere ?! The Dollar Tree also sells name brand items such as Yardleys , Zest , and Irish Spring and that's just in the soap isle !! I don't know about where you are located , but the Dollar Tree is the only place in town to create a balloon bouquet . Well , one that doesn't cost $25 for 4 balloons anyway . Just recently I purchased a inflated helium balloon at one of the local grocery's and it cost just over $5 !!!! I was so mad at myself for not taking the time to have stopped by the dollar tree and gotten more balloons for that same amount !! Sorry , that was a soap box moment .

To say that the Dollar Tree has become my go - to for shower gifts , care package supplies and little treats for myself now and then would be an understatement . When sending a care package of my own making , I like to toss in some fun candy , confetti or something unexpected to top it off . So that when the receiver opens it they know 1 . They are loved . 2 . They are thought of and care went into this and 3 . This is a fun gift they are about to go through . Since realizing the Dollar Tree is like a treasure chest of nothing but goodness I have also started getting my care package candy there . Just recently I picked up some of these butter cream mints and double bubble , of course !! No care package is really complete with out some double bubble chewing gum . They sell other name brand candies such as Twix , Lindt (yes , Lindt) and Tootsie Pop , just to name a few .
The buttercream mints say "Happy Birthday" . They
are also sold with "Thank You" , "It's a boy" and "It's a Girl"
printed on their packaging .  Such a fun addition to a birthday or baby gift !!
You know my passion for items that fit into the "Reduce ~ Reuse ~ Repurpose" category . Instead of buying a gift bag that will either tear or get tossed I have started purchasing cute reuse bags instead . I figure it is not just serving as presentation for the gift , but also participates in being apart of the gift itself . The recipient can use it for grocery shopping , toting items back and forth from work , or even as a gift bag for a gift they'll give later . I don't judge re - gifters as long as an item is still new and unopen / unused . There is no use in it going to waste ! You know how I hate waste .  Again , I was so surprised at all the fun patterns , colors , sizes and designs they had to offer when it came to reuse bags .
I'm unsure if you can tell how cute this reuse bag is
because of the pattern behind it . It is a black and white
flower shaped trellis pattern with purple trim and handles .
Those are candies laying on top :-)
To close my Dollar Tree section of this post I'll show
you my "Just for Me" purchase from today . You know
that it may be Summer outside house , but at the Faith Journals it is
Fall inside the house . I have already set up my Fall table d├ęcor .
I couldn't wait any longer and these fun glittery pumpkins
are the perfect addition .
One more baby on a budget gift that I'd like to share is from Shutterfly . I have used them for the majority of my personalized projects . Through Shutterfly discounts , bonus' , and freebies that come via their collaborative work with companies such as Target , Coca ~ Cola , and Kelloggs I have been able to create some wonderful personalized gifts with out going off budget . I have also been able to create a personal portfolio of events that I did while working as an university event planner . As I mentioned in my wedding gift breaking it down post , a favorite gift to give is shutterfly address labels . In the wedding post I wrote that every bride LOVES seeing her new name and address in print . It is one of those unexpected joys that gets forgotten in the chaos of actually planning a wedding and comes as a surprise after .  Well , to spin off of that idea I have given several of my friends address labels with their new babies name on them along with their address . I think the momma's have enjoyed sending thank you notes or letters to friends and family "from" their little one . Also ,  I do NOT know a grandparent alive that doesn't ADOREEEEEEEEE getting something from their grand child in the mail and that little address label that usually gets no attention , suddenly becomes one of the focal points of the piece of mail . If you follow shutterfly on Twitter , Facebook , Instagram , Pinterest or Google+ you will become privy to their give - a - ways , discounts , and bonus' before anyone else . One such freebie is on occasion a set of 24 , personalized , custom printed address labels . When purchased with a freebie code they tend to cost $3.27 in total , this being the cost for shipping , handling and taxes .  If you can't or don't want to wait for a freebie code this something you can also print on your own if you have a home printer . I have not found self - adhesive print labels that are the same quality as the ones you would receive if you ordered through shutterfly , but I would think they are out there somewhere . Even if they aren't and you print on the normal paper self - adhesive labels it still makes for a great gift ! As mentioned in the bridal post you could add a package of thank you notes or blank note cards and maybe even a page of stamps . A sheet of 10 stamps costs just under $5.00 . So , potentially you could give a awesome , personalized , helpful , and thoughtful baby gift for around $10.00 .

Shutterfly Freebie code + shipping, handling , taxes - address labels = $3.27
A sheet of 10 stamps from the Post office =  $4.90
 A pack of note cards from the dollar tree = $1.00 (pls tx)
                                                                                           =  $9 . 17 ish

I don't know about you , but I think that is a great gift for someone working on a budget !

Well, I hope that this " Breaking it Down " post has inspired some gift giving and care package ideas for you , that are not only easy on the wallet , but easy to create . I also hope that it has enlightened you a bit to the amazing finds that the Dollar Tree has to offer . I doubt it will be my last Dollar Tree rant . Yes , I do purchase gifts, care package items , and candy at other places , but now that I know all that can be found in this inexpensive treasure trove I will for sure make an effort to make it my first stop if possible when getting supplies for gifts and care packages . Honestly , I think that even if I had an unlimited amount of money I would still use the Dollar Tree as a resource . I mean , why wouldn't you save a buck if and where you can ?!! For me it is all about being responsible and accountable to His Provision for me and sharing that Love with others !

Happy Gift Giving !!! What are some fun baby shower gifts you have given ? Where do you go to find great bargains and deals ?! Please feel free to share with us in the comment section . Also , you can click on any highlighted item through this post to find links , past posts , etc. on the items or stores mentioned .


  1. Great ideas...and you are so right about those address labels! The grandparents love it! The dress up items are cute too...many times you are bombarded with newborn size things, but babies grow quick! And last Dollar Tree trip I got zebra printed doggie poop bags! They work great for diapers and I think the zebra print will be adorable!

  2. Thanks Cindy ! Good call on getting cute design pattern poopy bags. Makes them less....poopy. LOL!! Another note is that some doggie pooh bags are scented. Something else that would be helpful in making a stinky task a little less stinky and those bags usually come several hundred to a roll I think. So, last long and doesn't cost much ! All good things !