Hope Wissel

Tote-Ally Awesome Fall


I know there is a mixed batch of feelings this morning.  Some are jumping up and down celebrating the fact TODAY is the day kids go back to school.  Some mommas are crying to see their babies go off to school for the first time.  I used to always struggle with the first day “back to school” when Belinda was younger.  I was grateful for the routine her being in school brought but I missed the togetherness we had during the summer.

So, this is the perfect time for some “ME” time. I know, you are thinking… “I have NO time”. Money is tight –  school supplies and clothes cost a fortune!

What if I told you, you could earn some money to pay those school shopping credit card bills AND save some money to pay CASH for those holiday gifts?  What if you could earn money while chauffeuring the kids to activities (NO, I don’t mean an Uber driver) or sitting at the field while they practice?  What would you do with an extra $300? Or are you looking for some time away from the kids?  Maybe you just want to shop at a 40% discount and earn FREE products?  Yup, I have an answer to all of those questions….

First, there is the two options on the enrollment kit.  You can use it to kick off your business or you can do your holiday shopping in one easy step.  If you decide to kick off your business (of course I will help you); you can not only earn 25% commission BUT you can also earn FREE products or Disney Bucks or Visa Gift Cards.  I know, crazy, right???

If earning some money, gift cards or free product doesn’t sound good……….. you could be a  hostess and get some FREE and discounted products.  I know, still no time, right?

What if I said YOU could get some ME time AND some FREE products at the same time?  Say what???  How about you and 3 friends join me for coffee (my treat)? Or lunch at your favorite restaurant?  Working and can’t get away?  What if I parked my car in the parking lot and everyone came to check out my “trunk” to see all of the goodies on their lunch break?  Are you a social media junkie?  What if you just carried a catalog with you and sent all of your friends to an online Facebook party?

With Thirty One’s September Customer Special you (or your friends) can pick YOUR favorite product to get a discount on!  I have all THREE of these products and absolutely LOVE them.  No, I don’t have to say it because I am a consultant, I say it because I use all 3 of them!  The Colorblock Tote in Olive has become my everyday bag.  The Around Town Tote, I use when going to meetings along with my Super Swap it Pocket.  The All About the Benjamin Wallet is one of our top sellers over and over again.  Here is what you can earn in the month of September just by sharing your favorite products with friends and family: 

So whether you live near me or you just follow my blog or are Facebook friends, we can party together so YOU can get some FREE products.  Trust me, I have heard it all…. no one buys when I have a party, no one comes when I have a party…..Why?  Because they figure it is the same “sales pitch” all of the time.  What if you had a theme or I could show you some simple solutions to make your crazy life a little easier?  Think about it…. what could it hurt especially with a Facebook party.  You invite your friends and I do all of the work.    What do you say…

Okay, I know some of you just like to shop!  You have already gotten your fall catalog, circled what you want and are ready to place your order.   So, click the link and head to my website and place your order.  WHAT?  You don’t have a catalog to circle your favorite items in? Click the catalog on the right hand side to request your copy!  I’m going to squirrel for a moment… Do you remember getting the Sears (or Toys R Us) Christmas catalog and going through circling everything you wanted Santa to bring?  I know I am dating myself BUT you can do the same thing with your catalog.  Then give it your hubby, your significant other, your kids or whoever buys you gifts.  I will help to make sure YOU get the gift you want for your birthday, anniversary or the holidays.

So, whether you are interested in starting a business, getting free products or just do a little shopping…..I want to be your “bag lady”.  No job is too big or too small…..

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Tasty Tuesday Recipes

Save Money Grocery Shopping


Thank you to Makingsenseofcents for some of these tips….

I went grocery shopping this past weekend – nothing special, most of us do it every week, right?  It is only hubby and I so you would think it would be relatively cheap, right?  I only cook twice a week with enough to freeze meals for the week while he is at work.  I am always amazed the total is about $100 a week.  Eating healthy with lots of fruits and veggies is expensive combined with no dairy, no gluten and no soy products.

Did you know the average family of four spends around $700 to $1,000 a month on food?  Did you know most families waste around 40% of food each month!  That’s about $300 on an average monthly bill of $750.  YIKES!!!  Wouldn’t you rather keep $300 in your pocket? Here are some tips to help you………

#1 Plan your grocery trips with a list.

I know, you try.  You make a list of what you need.  You scour the circulars to find  sales, and the best deals.  Then you realize you have to go to 4 different stores to save money but are you really saving if you have to spend the money on time and gas?  Or, if you are like me, I make a list and half the time I forget to take it with me.  Shopping without the list is a bad idea.  How about putting your list on your phone?  When was the last time you left home without your phone?  I also tag where the sales are on the items I need so if I am running errands and go by the store, I stop in quick, pick up what is on sale and nothing else.

#2  Meal plan to save money on groceries.

Meal planning can completely change your life. We eat healthier, we save money, and we waste less food.  Planning doesn’t mean just in your head, it means actually writing it down so everyone knows the menu for the week.  It makes life so much easier.

#3 Use coupons when grocery shopping.

Do you use them?  I will admit I was a coupon cutter for years then I got out of it.  Now, I do most of my coupons through apps at the various stores.  I also take advantage of other apps which reward me for shopping – Cartwheel from Target, Whole Foods app, Receipt Hog and Shop Kick.  What are some of your favorite apps?

#4 Don’t grocery shop when you’re hungry.

This one is HUGE for me especially now when my diet is restricted to no gluten, no dairy and no soy.  Shopping when you’re hungry leads you to spending more money and not sticking to your list or your budget or your diet!

#5 Compare prices on items.

I was a name brand snob for years.  The truth is generic items aren’t always cheaper than their name brand counterparts, but sometimes they are.  I price compare our most frequently used products and get the best price for them whether they are generic or not – cheaper (with the same taste) is the name of the game.

#6 Don’t forget about the top and bottom shelves.

Did you know the middle shelves at grocery stores contain the most expensive items?   It is usually where people’s eyes are usually drawn to this area.  When you go shopping, be sure to scan prices and items on the other shelves to make sure you’re not missing out on a better deal.

#7 Sign up for grocery store’s loyalty card.

I know this may sound like a no brainer, right?  Most stores now have loyalty cards where you can save 10% or more on your purchase each time.  I have a key ring in my purse with LOTS of these cards.  They are all in one spot and easy to use.  Not a store you usually shop at – check with the person in front or behind you in line, they may be willing to share the discount with you.

#8 Shop with cash.

This is toughest one for me… I am a debit card girl all the way.  Hubby is the cash person.  The truth is one of the best ways to save money on groceries is to go shopping with only cash.  By doing this, you stick to your grocery list and your budget because you know exactly how much money you have to spend.

What are your best tips for saving money on groceries? Share them with us..

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!


Hope Wissel

Last Minute Holiday Shopping

angel ornament

I am off enjoying the day with Belinda and family but that doesn’t mean I don’t have some words of wisdom to share with my readers….

This is for those ambitious people who can actually pull off a “crafty Christmas” in 36 hours.

As I reflect on the last year, my inner gremlins always want me to head to the “shoulda”, “coulda”, “woulda” kind of things.  You know what I mean, things like wanting to pay off debt but not getting very far, vowing not use credit cards and then you do or the big one this time of year is to not spend ALOT on Christmas gifts.  Everyone’s definition of “a lot” is different but a post on Dave Ramsey‘s site about Christmas on a Crafty Budget brought back so many memories….

Somewhere in the midst of the hustle and bustle of Christmas  and the desire to make sure Belinda had everything she wanted (but maybe did not need), I lost some of the meaning of Christmas.  Yes, I was one of those crazy moms who didn’t care that I went into debt.  I was a single mom and never wanted Belinda to feel like she was missing out on things.  Don’t get me wrong when she was younger, I used to make her clothes for special occassions including Halloween costumes.  The sewing machine was my friend.  It took up space in my dining room and when we moved to the trailer, I had an office.   A corner of the office for my consulting business and one for my sewing.  I miss those days.  Those were the days of the crafty Christmas….

Ever heard the expression “It’s the thought that counts”? I always felt like that was the polite way to say, “This gift stinks, but I don’t want to hurt your feelings.”  That was always my fear just before the person receiving the handmade gift opened their present.  Only to find out, the best gifts you can give are sentimental or have some thought attached to them, not a price tag.  Some of these were: table runners that are still used by family or the recipe file that contained all of recipes we loved that Grams made.

When I buy gifts now (non-Thirty One gifts that is) they are usually from a fellow crafter.  I love being able to share the amazing things that others create.  Add to my bucket list  – get back to sewing or at least making some things.

So, are you fretting about money or the lack of it and worried that you don’t have something for everyone on your list?  Are you getting sucked into the shopping frenzy, tempted to just “charge a little” this holiday season?  Why not try some of these ideas…

  • The gift of time is a great gift for that mom that never gets a break from the kids.  Or how about a set of new parents that could use a date night.  What about spending the day with YOUR mom or dad?  Special time of just hanging out together, enjoying each other’s company.
  • Homemade goodies are always well received especially by those who have little time to bake.  Why not bake a batch of cookies and drop them off to a friend, a neighbor or even that family member that you don’t know what to give them.

I was blessed this year to have a CASH Christmas as a result of my Thirty One business.  Of course, fewer gifts were bought since Belinda and Ashley just got married in August.  The best gift is that the girls are back in NJ for Christmas.  Gathering with family and extended family over the holidays will be the best gift of all.

Maybe you have already finished your shopping and are having buyers remorse.  Bless and release!!!! Now is never too late to start planning for next year.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!