free stuff available to you from a small town library

bookcase books bookshelves hallway

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

Here is a list of FREE things currently available from my mid-west small town library.  I have wanted to do a post on all the free stuff that is available to you at your local library as I believe it is an underutilized community resource, especially for those of us living on a limited budget.  Although I knew my small library had a lot to offer, doing research for this blog, I discovered even more resources……….so I encourage you to check out what your local library has to offer you!

FREE resources:

Museum passes

Books

DVDs

CDs

free rooms that you can reserve for studying or meetings (has computer, white board, and markers)

WiFi

Charging stations for electronics

Links to two local newspapers through website

E-books

Hoopla – movie, documentaries, tv shows, audiobooks, comic books and ebooks

Play-a-ways

Magazines

Xbox & Wii games

Portable internet tablets to be used inside library

Faxing

Notary Public

Cynoculars – can be checked out

Portable recharger – can be checked out

WiFi hotspot – check out

Computer Lab

Monthly book club – adults

Monthly book club – homeschool grade school

Needle art group

Knitting group

Crocheting group

Ukulele classes

Paws to read – kids read to therapy dogs to increase reading skills

Storytime for babies

Storytime for toddlers

Saturday  crafternoons  – drop in crafts for school aged kids

Weekly teen classes

OverDrive – audiobook and book downloads

My  library rewards – receive points for checking out items and earn free food, classes and museum passes from the surrounding communities

RB digital – free e-magazines

Tumble book of the day – animated audio kids’ books

eSebco database – digital nonfiction childrens’ books

MyON books – digital childrens’books

Exam proctoring

Genealogy room – Librarian to assist with your research needs

Childrens’ area – w/books, tables, computers and lego play area

Teen area – booths, tables, books, board games

 

Until next time………….YOU are a superhero and superheros read!  (at least that what the posters say!)

healthy “food” pick of the week

IMG_1202

 

At a grocery trip to WalMart this week, I was looking for some unrefined coconut oil.  If you are chronically ill, I am sure you have heard of the health benefits of this oil and you are also aware how expensive it can be.

I was happy to find this 14 oz jar of organic, unrefined coconut oil for $4.62.  I brought it home and tried it the next day and it had a pleasant, light coconut taste, not over powering, which is how I like it.  The only downside I could find to this product is that it is in a plastic jar instead of glass.

Until next time………………YOU are a superhero and superheros must eat healthy!

 

 

(I am not affiliated with WalMart)

free educational websites for older children (and adults) – 5 of my favorite picks

apple computer cup desk

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

 

Now that my kiddos are older, here are five of my favorite educational websites.

 

This is a YouTube channel that teaches topics ranging from science to literature.

https://www.youtube.com/user/crashcourse

 

National Gallery of Art – activities and resources for all ages

https://www.nga.gov/education/kids.html

 

A site that donates 10 grains of rice to a world hunger organization for every correct answer.  Various subjects including vocabulary, math, science and humanities – I LOVE using this site.

http://freerice.com

 

Free educational videos about almost every subject.

http://www.watchknowlearn.org/

 

Free foreign language lessons.

https://conjuguemos.com/guest_intro

 

Until next time, you are a superhero……….and once you visit all of these sites, a super smart one too!

Five of my top free educational sites for young kids

computer monitor on table

Photo by Jay kunwar on Pexels.com

 

After my chronic illnesses kicked it into high gear right after my youngest turned a year old, I quickly started searching for how I was going to keep my kiddos busy,  maybe learn something, and have fun.

I remember those days with young ones under my feet while I was so ill, stressed out, and not sure what was going on with me, with each day bringing on new physical challenges.    One of the ways I kept my kids entertained for a while each day was with computer time……….

Here is a list of 5 of my favorite educational sites for young kids.

Happy exploring…………..

 

http://www.starfall.com/

 

http://pbskids.org/

 

https://kids.nationalgeographic.com/

 

https://www.brainpop.com/free-stuff/

 

http://www.nickjr.com/games/

 

Until next time……………you are a super hero even if your cape looks more like a child’s blanket!

‘health food’ find of the week – $0.94

I have found trying to eat healthy and feeding a family on a budget to be quite challenging.    Although some would not consider this health food, I thought it was a great deal and if you are going to eat corn chips, this is a great choice.

This is Great Value (Wal-Mart’s store brand) organic, blue corn tortilla chips made with only three ingredients…….ground organic blue corn, organic sunflower oil, and sea salt and they are naturally gluten free.  One 8oz. bag is only 94 cents!  I thought this was a HUGE deal and hope you do too!

IMG_1196

 

 

10 frugal mental pick-me-ups

trees in park

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

Living with illness day-in and day-out not only wears on your body, but takes a toll on your mental health.  It is hard to keep picking yourself up when you are in constant pain, hear a trail of bad news from health care practitioners, and experience the isolation that CI can bring.  Depression and anxiety start to take a grip on your brain and it can be a very hard grip to shake.  Taking time, daily, to give yourself a mental pick-me-up is an  important part of keeping as healthy as possible.

 

  1.  Pray/Meditate for guidance, for new ways to deal with your illness, for healing paths that bring comfort, and for people into your life who truly care.
  2.   Listen to music that makes you happy………from Mozart to The Beatles from Madonna to The Red Hot Chili Peppers, music has a way of making us happy and allowing our minds to escape from reality – as least for a little while.
  3.   Get outside in nature.  Who doesn’t love looking at pictures of the beach, a flower in a field or a beautiful tree in a forest?  To experience it in person allows you to internalize the beauty and refresh the soul.
  4.   Drink a glass of filtered water.  It is so important that we stay properly hydrated.  It seems like such an easy thing to do but when you are in pain and nauseous, it can be a chore to take in enough fluids.  Water is known to improve mood, reduce headaches and flush out toxins.  Plain water does get boring, so adding lemon, cucumber, lime, orange, strawberries, even some fresh herbs such as mint or basil can add flavor and bring added benefits.  Be creative!
  5.   Sit outside and soak in some rays for 15 minutes. Sun increases your vitamin D levels which can give your immune system and mood a boost.
  6.  Laugh.  Get on-line and read some jokes, get on Pinterest, search for some funny memes, or watch a feel good movie……..laughter decreases stress hormones and increases endorphins, which are the feel good chemicals.
  7.  Breathe……….sometimes we are so stressed we are not really breathing.  Take some  deep breaths, not forced, just natural.  Our body NEEDS oxygen to live and deep breathing has been proven to have a positive impact on your brain, heart, digestion and immune system.  Check-in with yourself at least twice a day to make sure you are really breathing.
  8.  Journal.  Sometimes the chronic illness monster gets the best of us.  We just need to say stuff, swear like a drunken sailor, scream at the top of our lungs, yell at our doctors for not believing/helping/healing, and who are we to tell?  When we are alone it is imperative that we get those thoughts and feelings out so they are not internalized, creating a breeding ground for more illness.  Write those feelings down as they come.  Do not worry about what it is or how it is written, just let it out.
  9.   Do some gentle exercise like take a walk, a few yoga poses, ti chi, or stretches.  Whenever possible, move your body as much as possible as this also releases endorphins, possibly reducing depressive symptoms.  Walking to and from the bathroom and/or kitchen is way better than nothing.
  10.   Eat a healthy snack.  It is important that we continue to eat clean, healthy food despite our illnesses.  Eating food in its most natural state is best for providing our bodies the necessary vitamins and minerals needed to function as highly as possible.  A smoothie, a piece of fruit, veggies, nuts, seeds or 1/2 an avocado are all healthy and simple.

Until next time……………….You are a superhero!  (Yes, I mean YOU!)

 

 

My favorite book on money saving tips

pink and white ceramic pig coin bank

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

If you are anything like me, you need to watch your pennies.  My CIs have put an enormous amount of strain on our budget requiring me manage it closely.  As with de-cluttering books, I have read many (and I mean many) books on how to save money, budgeting and frugality.  Some of the books were a total waste of time, others have been very helpful, but the one that changed my life more than any other money saving book is, The Complete Tightwad Gazette by Amy Dacyczyn.

The Complete Tightwad Gazette is not a typical book that reads like a story, instead it is based on the subscription newsletters that Ms. Dacyczyn published from 1990 – 1996.  Therefore, the book is divided up into smaller articles ranging from………..should you let a bar of soap dry out before using it, how to make a volleyball net with plastic rings from a 6-pack to a basic muffin recipe, and everything in between.  Because the newsletters were published in the 1990s many of the money saving tips are now outdated and no longer relevant.  Despite the book having some out dated money saving tips, I found it extremely useful.  I did read the entire book cover to cover, all 959 pages, and it was the only book I have read that encouraged me to start thinking of as many ways as possible I could save us money, how to creatively use up what we already have, and make the most out of every penny.   No other book has pushed me past my comfort zone, to think creatively and encourage me to search for even the smallest ways to save…………hey, it all adds up!

Because this book has been so wildly popular you should be able to check it out from your local library.  If you cannot find the Complete Tightwad Gazette you maybe able to find one of the first three volumes:  one, two and three………the later ones would probably be more beneficial.  I have seen copies of her books at Half Price Books and Goodwill.  In my very humble opinion, it is worth the time and effort to find a copy of her book.

Until next time………….YOU are a superhero!  And even superheros need to save money!