It’s giveaway time – your family budgeting problems, solved.

by Tsh Oxenreider

Tsh is the founder of this blog and just finished traveling around the world with her husband and 3 kids. Her latest book is Notes From a Blue Bike, and believes a passport is one of the world's greatest textbooks.

The giveaway is now closed! Check here for the winner.

I told you that today, I’d tell you about what tool I use for our family budgeting, and that I’d give you a chance to win it. I did not lie.

Photo by Dayna Bateman

It seems rather nerdy to get excited about a budgeting program, but then again, I’ve never run across anything like Pear Budget before. I used Quicken for a long time, mostly because it was what I had – it came free on our MacBook. But it started driving me bonkers, mostly because it was confusing to use (and I consider myself more or less computer savvy). There were just silly things I didn’t need to mess with when it came to managing every day family finances. Plus, it kept unexpectedly freezing on me.

I first heard of Pear Budget from a few personal finance blogs I really admire, such as Get Rich Slowly. It didn’t really sound like anything different or spectacular, but people kept recommending it, so I decided to check it out.

What I noticed first was the interface. It’s gorgeous. It’s clutter-free, it’s streamlined, and it’s easy on the eyes. That may sound surfacey, but to me, it adds enjoyment to budgeting. A good aesthetic doesn’t make a budget tool suddenly something I can’t live without – but it’s hard to find, so I appreciate it when it’s there.


The great thing about Pear Budget, however, is that it’s elegant interface echoes its simplicity. It really is so easy to use. You simply set up your budget in about 15 minutes, and you’re good to go. Head over there for a minute, read their initial home page, and head back over here. You’ll see what I mean.

Other things I like about Pear Budget:

  • It’s completely based on a zero-based budget.
  • You can fully customize your tags – there’s none of the pre-entered kind.
  • It’s quick and powerful – because it doesn’t do anything but budgeting, it takes mere seconds to load.
  • It beautifully handles both my regular, monthly expenses and my irregular expenses that show up only several times a year.
  • It uses the classic envelope system – you fill in a category’s amount, and it depletes the total as its spent.
  • They’ve got a blog that regularly answers questions and provides a place to contribute your thoughts (love that!).


Charlie and Sarah Park and their three preschool-aged girls are the family behind Pear Budget. About five years ago, they created a spreadsheet to help track their spending, and mostly for fun, they posted it online. After it was downloaded over 100,000 times, they decided to turn it into the web-based application we now see.

The Parks are a work-at-home mom and dad, and they get how busy parents are. They know what it’s like to manage a home. And they personally relate to staring in cloudy confusion at budget software that just doesn’t work for them. They know that when you only have 15 minutes of computer time every couple hours, you’re not going to want to spend it trying to understand how to work a tool. You just want to update your budget, see the results clearly, and move on.

pear_budget.jpgPear Budget completely aligns with my home management philosophy, so Simple Mom enthusiastically recommends them as an ideal budgeting tool.

I’m happy to say that Pear Budget is only $3 a month – that’s $36 a year, which is really affordable. But I’m even happier to say that one of you will win a lifetime subscription to Pear Budget! That’s years of lightweight budgeting ahead of you.

In order to win, simply enter a comment in this post! In your comment, please tell me your best cheap date idea. To enter a second time, subscribe to Simple Mom’s feed by either RSS or by email, and email me the secret code you see at the bottom of all the posts (see here if you want further explanation). You don’t have to be a new subscriber to get a second entry – just email me the code! To get a third entry, post about this giveaway on your blog, and let me know about it.

That’s it! This is obviously open to worldwide readers, since there’s no shipping involved. And you don’t need a blog to enter, but you need to make sure you provide a valid email address with your entry.

This contest will be open until Wednesday, June 25 at midnight Pacific Standard Time.

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  1. I’m in!
    Cheap date idea? We like to drive around our favorite “dream neighborhoods” and admire architecture and landscaping ideas that appeal to us. Although with with gas being $4.50+ maybe it’s not such a cheap date anymore.

    Jills last blog post..The Subtle Romance of Clothespins

  2. Our favourite cheap date is to “dream shop” at Home Depot or Lowes. We could seriously walk around for hours, just dreaming of all the upgrades we could do to our house. Some of them have actually come to pass… of course, then the date becomes one of the most expensive!! But its fun to walk around, hold hands and plan & dream for our future!

    Claires last blog post..Beating the Summer Heat

  3. My hubby likes to ride our horses with a picnic up into the nearby hills. Saves gas money, though feed is higher because of gas so it still hits us!

  4. Here’s our cheap Saturday afternoon date. We put holds on dvd’s from the library because that way we get all the super cool movies without having to wait or wonder if all they’ll have is fourteen copies of a Nixon biopic when we stop by to borrow something. When the boys take their afternoon nap, we watch it and I make appetizers we normally reserve for guests. Neither of us are allowed to answer phones or use the computer while we watch. Snuggling on the couch is encouraged. When the boys wake up we go for a drive on whatever roads catch our eyes and I try to arrange for my husband spend at least a few uninterrupted minutes taking pictures.

    I love these kinds of dates better than going out somewhere. I feel ready to tackle the week after one. I guess I am a cheap date…

  5. My cheap date: My sweetie and I getting dressed up and going dancing — in our living room.

    otherdeb (Deb Wunder)s last blog post..Gardens or Gutters — Where is Your Attention?

  6. avatar
    katy lundberg says:

    We have Wade Oval Wednesdays in Cleveland, Ohio (WOW). During the summer, there is reduce pricing on the Art museum and the Botanical Gardens along with free music every week!!!

  7. Our favorite cheap date idea:

    We’re so very lucky to live in Florida, so naturally it’s a nice, long, quiet walk on the beach.

  8. avatar
    Sarah N says:

    My favorite cheap date is cuddling up on the couch after the kids are in bed and watching a movie together!

    Thanks for a great giveaway!

  9. I’d love this. Thanks.

    Cheap date: We’ve spent many a day walking the mall. We love to window shop. That’s just us, though.

  10. Now that the kids are older and can be left alone for an hour or so, our cheap date is waking up on a Saturday morning and going out for a coffee together. We talk about the week behind us and the week before us. It’s a great way to start the weekend.

  11. I actually downloaded the Pear spreadsheet way back when and I’m super excited to see how it’s evolved! Count me into the drawing!!

    Lauras last blog post..Pieces and Parts

  12. avatar
    Margaret says:

    My favorite cheap date is taking advantage of all of the free outdoor concerts, plays, and other entertainment that the large city I live in sponsors for the summer. It’s one of the best perks of living in a big city.

  13. It would help if I read the entire sentence of how to throw my name in the hat. I went and got all excited and stopped reading about how to enter. So, cheap date night idea…

    a pack of playing cards or board games! We like to play a random assortment of games with playing cards like War or Black Jack (without the gambling) or board games like Monopoly.

    Lauras last blog post..Pieces and Parts

  14. We’ve been using the pear budget template for almost 2 years, but it’s so much better now! My fave cheap date is hiking in the country with hubby and packing a picnic!

    Julies last blog post..It’s me to a T!

  15. Hmm a “cheap date” idea. We enjoy fishing so we like to pack a picnic lunch and drive 5 minutes to the local wildlife area and spend an afternoon outside fishing, talking and just enjoying each other’s company.

    that’s entry #1… I could really use this so I’ll be back with entry #’s 2 and 3 soon!

    Blesseds last blog post..How To Have A Good Retriever – Part 1

  16. OK, I told you my cheap date idea
    I emailed you to let you know I’m subscribed to your feed
    And… at 1:00 PM today, central time – USA, there will be a post on my blog about your give-a-way!
    3 entries… are you sure there aren’t any extra credit entry possibilities? This sounds like awesome software, I’ll have to check it out, even if I don’t win… Thanks for the give-a-way!

    Blesseds last blog post..How To Have A Good Retriever – Part 1

  17. Our favorite cheap date is putting our two young kids to bed and enjoying a movie while eating a special dessert that we don’t have to share (be it warm brownies, our favorite flavor of ice cream or just some popcorn)… it sounds like it’s not all that exciting but after a long week of work and cutting grapes in half – the simpler the better! The bonus here is that we actually get around to doing this since it doesn’t require that much planning or getting a sitter.

  18. Our favorite cheap date is getting a single take-out entree, coming home, and splitting the dinner while watching a DVD. No sitters needed, and you can stop the movie if you have to pee! :-)

    I’ll e-mail you to let you know I subscribed, and I’m going to post the giveaway on my blog, too!

    Jenis last blog post..Bella: Before & After

  19. Ok, first off, I NEED THIS! LOL We have no budgeting going on. It’s whatever happens, happens.

    Apparently, this is NOT how we’re supposed to live LOL

    Second, my favorite cheap date idea (when we actually have a babysitter, which is to say – NEVER) is to grab a subway sandwich to split, then he & I head down to this park where you can look out over the valley and watch the sun set. Cheap, fun, pretty!

    Dawn @ Coming to a Nursery Near Yous last blog post..Friday’s Feast

  20. avatar
    Barbara says:

    Please add my name to the drawing…

    Cheap date…put the kids upstairs watching their own movie while husband and I watch a movie downstairs (preferably and cheaper to be rented from the library or borrowed from a friend). Must include snacks or a glass of wine. Sometimes a friend and I will baby sit for each other so that we can each have a whole evening.

  21. Our favorite cheap date idea is to go to Barnes and Noble, we’ll have a coffe and browse around at the books. Sometimes we’ll even read a whole book in the store!

  22. This looks perfect!

    Cheap date idea: picnic at a park. We find a shady spot, enjoy a delicious meal alfresco, and walk it off on the nearby trails. This is a date the little ones can join us for, too. I’m noting all the great ideas above!

    Amy G.s last blog post..Friday now

  23. We love to go to the library and browse the book shelves. When we find something worth reading we find a comfy couch or chair to cuddle up in and read. We also use the library’s computer system to put all the new DVD’s on hold so we never pay any rental fees on nights we want to stay home for our “dates.”

  24. Hey there,
    Our cheap date..mmm putting the kids to bed..early..and jumping into bed with the lights out to snuggle and watch dvds..oh and usually finish with some cold rock icecream as a treat…thats it..that is is it doesnt go all pear shaped by the kids waking up. thanks Jogirl

    Jogirls last blog post..Art Show..

  25. Our favorite cheap date is to surf the free stuff on our cable’s “On Demand” service. We’re constantly surprised at some of the free movie choices. And while sometimes we end up watching “Ernest Gets Scared” (or something like that), even those days are fun simply because of the silliness.

    Princess Leias last blog post..Works For Me Wednesday: Not Couponing (for now)

  26. A cheap summer date would be to enjoy the FREE movie in the park. Snuggled up on a blanket, under the stars, eating popcorn popped at home in a big tuperware bowl, watching the big screen and holding hands.

  27. Our cheap date is taking the kids to the park. We love going to the park with kids and wouldn’t rather do anything else.

    Courtneys last blog post..Popcorn Recipes and Giveaway

  28. Great giveaway!

    We like to take a long walk through our neighborhood and enjoy a simple dessert (like ice cream sundaes) when we get home. The walk gives us a chance to talk and get away from our phones and computers. Plus, we exercise a little to make up for the ice cream!

  29. Our favorite cheap date is to rent a “non new release” from BlockBuster (our yearly club membership is less than $4 a month), put the kiddoes to bed early and pop a huge tub of real popcorn with real butter. We sometimes add a wine cooler or white wine. But we always snuggle in and enjoy the older movies we loved from when we were dating or newlyweds. An added plus is that the snacking is healthier too :)

    The Gang’s All Here!s last blog post..No New Word

  30. My favorite cheap date – hikes in national parks. The cost of entry is usually minimal or free. We find one near where we live, pack a picnic, sunscreen, water, etc… and head out. We hike for awhile, picnic, enjoy the natural wonder of our state while getting exercise and enjoying each other’s company.

  31. My favorite cheap date (actually it’s my favorite even if I’m not looking for cheap) is to be anywhere where there is a vast amount of “nature” spread before me while I am free to spend time with my dh without “worldly” distractions. For example, I love going to the seaside…seeing the wide open expanse of rolling water, hearing the sound of the rolling waves, smelling that seaside smell that I cannot describe in words, and just feeling at peace, with my husband at my side. Or spending leisurely, relaxed time in our beautiful botanical gardens. It is like a mini vacation!

    Now my favorite “cheep” date, would be watching the birds out my window. Others may think that this idea is “for the birds” and I must be a “birdbrain”….but I couldn’t resist the pun.

  32. Oh yeah, I linked to you in this morning’s post, too.

    The Gang’s All Here!s last blog post..No New Word

  33. I almost purchased Quicken yesterday so glad I didnt Im ging to check out this first!
    As far as a cheap date we love our dollar theater and tuesday nights its .50 cents we only buy popcorn and take our own drinks so with the popcorn and tickets its never more that $7 dollars and we swap out babysitting with friends!

  34. avatar
    Carolyn says:

    One of our favorite ‘cheap dates’ is to have coffee in bed, before the kids get up. We sit and talk about things we never seem to take time for during our busy days. We have found it a beautiful start to our day, when we take the time to do it.

  35. avatar
    Jenna Roberts says:

    Thank you for a wonderful blog- it really is inspiring me to simplify my life and enjoy what i do (SAHM/part time university student) more.

    My fav cheap date is dropping my son off at my sisters or mum’s place and going to uni to see my fellow students perform a play (quite often written by the students but not always). Tickets are $6, baby sitting is free (lucky aren’t we!), we get to see some great plays and get to support our local upcoming talent.

    Thanks again!

  36. Cheap date? Haircuts. I know it sounds weird but it is actually fun! Andy hey get an ice cream cone afterwards!

  37. My favorite cheap date is making a nice dinner at home and then snuggling up on the couch with my husband and a nice glass of wine to watch a movie or having a marathon Yahtzee match!

  38. My mother-in-law takes my daughter out on Sunday afternoons while my son naps. It might not count as a “date,” but it sure it nice and quiet around here during that time!

    Nicholes last blog post..Presto change-o

  39. Date night. Hmmm, what’s that? (3 kiddos in 5 years + a husband who works crazy shift work)
    OK – best cheap date idea – I’m not the first to say this, but movie time in our living room, after the kidlets are in bed. :)

  40. Best cheap date idea:

    Go to the library and get a couple of books (summertime) or a movie (wintertime) Wait until little ones are in bed. Read on front porch (together) with a cool beverage and a snack (summer) or snuggle on the couch while eating popcorn and drinking a hot beverage and watching the movie…

    majellamoms last blog post..A Message from the "DH"

  41. I think a great cheap date is to get the kids to bed and have a special dinner together. You can end the night with games or a movie. This works well if you have to pay a babysitter to leave or if you have just had a baby and feel that you can’t leave. All it takes is planning to make the night special.

  42. My best cheap date idea is asking a family member to watch the kids outside of our house, making dinner together, putting together ice cream cones at home, and taking them with us as we go for a walk in our neighborhood.

  43. When we go out to celebrate something, instead of going to a fancy restaurant, we go to this awesome dive of a Mexican restaurant. It’s cheap and all the ingredients are sourced locally. Celebrating doesn’t have to be expensive. The food is great, and we get what we were going for — low key time out to enjoy each other’s company.

    Allies last blog post..Tip of the Day – Find an Eco-Friendly Swimsuit

  44. I would so love to win this! Thanks for the chance!

    Jenns last blog post..Thankful Thursday

  45. Ooops, forgot to put my cheap date idea. My husband regularly wins movie tickets from raffles and things at work, so we go to the movies on a Tuesday when we get free popcorn with our movie theater rewards card. My mother in law babysits for free so we only spend money on a drink to go with our popcorn!

    Jenns last blog post..Thankful Thursday

  46. I don’t have a sweetie right now, but when I do, I like sitting on a park bench with them in Washington Square, snuggling, chatting, and listening to the half-dozen bands of musicians playing across the park from each other. Sometimes they inspire the crowds to sing along with them. It’s a bit different now that the park is under construction, right in the middle where the fountain used to be, but there are still park benches and music :-)

  47. cheap date idea…

    this sounds silly, but volunteering at a local humane society. grab a dog and take him for a long walk and have fun together.

  48. Our favorite cheap date would be a day of fishing together. Oh no wait!! That would be my husband,s favorite cheap date! LOL. Mine would be a picnic in the park.

  49. Our cheap date idea is to get a redbox movie with a free code and get a take and bake pizza after the kiddo goes to bed. Thus no babysitter and very cheap. These are for the nights when you just want to chill at home but still have cuddle time so you feel like you spent some quality time just the two of you!

    Staceys last blog post..Oreos

  50. Going to a free advanced screening movie and then buying popcorn and candy.

  51. my favorite super-cheap date is a candlelight picnic on the living room floor after the kiddos go to bed! light a fire, throw a bunch of comfy pillows on the floor, and settle back with yummy food, good wine, and a fun movie! if you’re feeling extra kinky, you can make s’mores over the fireplace :)

    velvets last blog post..ostrich riding

  52. Before we had kids our favorite date was going to the park, setting up a big blanket in the shade and reading. Such a great way to spend time together and relax. Now that we have kids our trips the park are entirely different…

  53. My favorite cheap date is to the local ice cream dive. They seem to have set their prices in 1982! We have a nice summertime treat and a chat for about $4.

  54. avatar
    Felicia says:

    Our favorite cheap date is to go hiking together. All it costs is the gas to get there and back. Plus we get a workout in. :)

  55. avatar
    Anne Marie says:

    Our favorite cheap date is old car shows. We have an antique car and we will go “cruising” in it together and look at other old cars and dream about which collector car we would get one day. Also, we go to our favorite hot dog stand on Wednesday night when it is 4 for $4 night. Not necessarily healthy but ooooh so yummy!

  56. We have been using pear budget after you recommened it a little while back. I love it.
    Our best option right now is watching a movie after the kids go to bed.
    It is nice b/c I don’t worry how the kids are doing and it is easier to relax.

  57. Pear looks like a great budgeting tool. And $3/month is a great deal!

    My cheap date idea is to take the children to a sitter’s house and then come back home (to a hopefully clean house) and just hang out together. Eat some chips-n-dip, watch a movie, snuggle on the couch, play a board game, etc…

    Jenny Ds last blog post..Country Dreams

  58. We like to share date night babysitting with another couple- sometimes we then to go a restaurant we have a coupon for, of course, or we can go back home- make dinner there and watch a netflix movie

  59. avatar
    Jennifer says:

    Our favorite cheap date night is after the kids go to bed, pulling out the inflatable mattress and snuggling in front of the TV with a movie playing from our movie library or the local library. We also like playing card games and the winner gets a “prize”-this doesn’t always last very long, but it is great foreplay!

  60. avatar
    Jennifer says:

    I feel the same way about Quicken-I use it but not for budgeting because it is too difficult! I could really use something like this that is simple. I subscribed to your blog as well-I read it daily but have never subscribed (but have sent a good dozen or more readers to your site!). Hope this helps you out!

  61. We keep a tight budget with Quicken, but this seems worth looking into.

    Cheap date for us it to get a few couples together and go play soccer or Frisbee or go for a hike. Something active that will produce a lot of laughter and isn’t just sitting around.

    Hannahs last blog post..Good Monday

  62. Just to join in the fun …

    Our favorite cheap date is to have some friends over after we put the kids down for bed, and to play a fun board game called Settlers of Catan. We end up doing this about once a week. The only cost is the occasional bottle of wine or bowl of popcorn or chocolate or whatever.

    One of the great things about it is that we all know the rules, so we end up having great conversation for the hour or so that we’re playing.

    Sarah and I are really excited that we’ll get to give one of you a free PearBudget account! And we’re excited to try some of these cheap date ideas, as well! Thanks, all!

  63. SOOOOOOOOOOOOOO need this budgeting tool!!

    Favorite cheap date: rent a movie from our satellite service (no driving – no $ wasted on gas) and a pizza. Veg-out on our couch – easy and fun!

  64. Our favorite cheap date doesn’t occur very often. But every so often, the stars align with the kids all in preschool (and staying late for lunch bunch) and hubby happens to be working from home. We grab a quick sandwich from a local shop and head to the nearest beach. It may only last a half an hour, but the time is unexpectedly precious and such a rare treat.

  65. If you know one thing about is US…. We (Eric really) loves a budget. I agree Quicken makes it hard b/c it does allow carry over from the past month. I work really hard months to save money so we can splurge other months and Quicken doesn’t give me the satisfaction that I actually worked hard to save money. :)

    Cheap Date- -Make a dessert or big bowl bluebell ice cream (if I can force myself to spend $5.50 on a half gallon of ice cream ) and eat it while playing games like Settlers of Catan.

  66. this sounds fun! why not, huh?
    ok, cheap date idea….(here’s the hard part)
    we live in a city with an amazing farmer’s market, it’s on the rail line, so for my eco-minded hubbie the ride to the market on the rails gives us time to talk, see the city from the unique view of the train, help the planet and pick up some fresh fruit, artisan cheese, just-baked bread and a very affordable bottle of wine…total date (with rail fare included): $25.00…the time we were forced to slow down and just “be” together…you guessed it….priceless.

  67. My Favorite cheap date is when my Hubby and I go feed theducks at the local nature park. It’s where we fell in love back in college and I love to go there and remember.

    Renees last blog post..= UH OH!

  68. Wow! The Pear system looks awesome!

    My best cheap date… My hubby and I like to go to one of our favorite restaurants and order an appetizer to go, then we take it to a near by park and split it. Of course, this doesn’t work well during the HOT summer months!

    I’m off to post about this!

  69. My favorite cheap date idea is a dessert date. We have dinner at home maybe on the back porch and then have a special dessert. Either something I have baked or made or we go out for icecream or dessert at a restaurant. Any time we eat out we always look longingly at the dessert menu but are too stuffed to enjoy dessert. This way we can have a light salad for dinner and have our cake and eat it too!! :)

    I have been using the Gazelle Budget program on Dave Ramseys MyTMMO website but DH wants easier access to our budget. Thanks for the giveaway!

    Rean Day

    Rean Days last blog post..Final test

  70. Could really use this as we are going to bring a child into the world before too long and will need to be more careful with our budgeting!

    We are homebodies…I like making a simple dessert (I made this easy pineapple casserole earlier this week and it was a hit! Then we chill on the couch, drink coffee, and play a game on the Wii or watch a Netflix movie. I’ve been known to put whipped cream and sprinkles on my coffee to make it seem more special!

    Jessies last blog post..

  71. I REALLY need to create a budget and maybe I would do it if it were online… Thanks for teh giveaway!

  72. My best cheap date idea is going on a picnic and watching the sunset. Just bring some food from around the house to eat. Pretty cheap, and fun!Great giveaway, thanks.

    Mary @ Adventures in Mommylands last blog post..Two $5 Gift Cards to Joe’s Crab Shack Restaurant Giveaway

  73. Our favorite cheap date is to send all the kids away and sit out on our screened back porch and maybe sip a glass of wine or water or tea and just talk and connect…something we rarely get to do with a busy household of three teens.

    Susans last blog post..The Resemblance is Very Cool.

  74. Our favorite cheap date is to head over to Starbucks (usually using a gift card!) and get two Peppermint Mocha’s. Then, we’ll either sit outside and just talk, or take the drinks and go for a walk or drive (although with gas prices the way they are, this one is out for a while!).

    Pams last blog post..50 Days of Summer

  75. We don’t go on many dates out of the house together–maybe twice a year for a special occasion, like our anniversary, or on the occasion we have family visiting who can look after our little love. On our anniversary, we walk to the drugstore and split up for 10 minutes to find the perfect card. After ten minutes, we swap what we found, kiss each other Happy Anniversary, and put the cards back.

    We have different memories of the first time we met and the exact time we fell in love, so on the walk back home, we try to convince each other which of us is right. We end up flipping a coin and the loser buys an ice-cream. To split.

    Maureens last blog post..The Randomness Continues

  76. avatar
    sheryll says:

    Our favorite summer cheap date is taking advantage of the free concerts in our area. We take food from home, and if it’s close enough we even ride our bikes. The kids can play and dance to the music. Lots of fun!

  77. Favorite cheap date… we have an old fashioned drive-in theater here that runs during the summer. They even do double features sometimes. Bring your favorite snacks, the hot date and enjoy! It’s a fun atmosphere.

  78. Our favorite cheap date (for a hot summer night when the grandparents are in town to watch our son): We pack a picnic dinner and bicycle to the nearby forest, where we dine on one of the secluded “beaches” by the pond. Then we bike by the town’s ice cream parlor (to split an ice cream) on the way home. Light exercise + yummy food + time to hold hands and chat uninterrupted = bliss.

  79. These days…a frozen pizza, a Dr. Pepper, and a movie.

  80. our best cheap date is heading down the road that is at the end of the airports runway and parking there on the side. We sit on the hood and watch the planes take off and land over our heads and watch the stars in between. It’s actually quite beautiful and not as noisy as you may think. A lot of people from my town do this..even with their kids at all hours of the day.
    Now that my husband’s deployed I do this when I miss him.
    Thanks for the great blog!

  81. And…I love your blog!

  82. I am really excited about this simple system. My favorite cheap date is just going somewhere to be alone with my hubby and talk…maybe coffee or dessert.

    care-ins last blog post..Monkeying Around

  83. I’m loving all of these cheap date ideas! Ours is pretty basic. A video from the library (or, if we’re being really wild we pay $4 and get one from Hollywood video) and beef tacos from Bajio.

    I love budgeting and would love to try out Pear Budget.

    Jessicas last blog post..A Gathering of Giveaways

  84. Anywhere hubs is. I’m so cheesy!

  85. I currently (and have been for a number of years) use Quicken. Same reason as you mentioned. It works but I don’t love it.

    Cheap date? First of all I am very blessed to have family so close so when we go out the cost of babysitting isn’t killing us. If we don’t have money saved to spend then it’s fun to go to Lowe’s and talk/dream about the future project/endeavors that are on our wish list. That and an ice cream cone without children is a great, relaxing date for us.

    TCCs last blog post..Lions, Elephants and Clowns…

  86. These days, with two little ones – one of which who is very picky about where he sleeps – a cheap date involves a movie from Netflix and a cheap bottle of wine from Trader Joe’s.

    Kaceys last blog post..Weekly House Update

  87. Fun cheap date: We wait until our son has gone to bed, make popcorn and battle it out on Guitar Hero! :)

  88. avatar
    Ruthanna says:

    A cheap date for us used to be for me to go to check sprinklers (he’s a farmer) with him in the evening. The air was cool and the fields were green. Now we have children and I have to stay home with them once they are in bed.

  89. In n Out burgers and a movie AFTER the kids are in bed:)

  90. Cheap Date…. share a crossword puzzle and a bottle of pelegrino.

  91. avatar
    Heatherlynn says:

    My husband works nights, so our cheap date is breakfast on his Friday, while the kids are in school.

  92. Hmm our favorite cheap-ish date…go sing karaoke. As long as the place is close, we can just have a couple of drinks and sing to our hearts content. Fun!

    Lorris last blog post..June 20, 2008 – Flashback Friday

  93. There are a lot of parks around here. So for a date with someone I know I have fun with, I suggest we go fly kites.

    For all day dates I have a stockpile of wire coathangers that an old roommate left behind, so with a little thread and some old rags (blankets) we make our own kites, then go fly them.

  94. Our favourite cheap date (once the kids are tucked in bed) includes a nice bottle of wine, good cheese, crackers and the Scrabble board. Always fun!

    alexandras last blog post..Say hello to Hudson…

  95. We love going to our small town high school sports events–sure, they’re not very good, and sometimes it’s cold, but there’s something great about being together while connecting to the community.

    Wendys last blog post..Why Is TV So White?

  96. I just signed up for the free trial of Pear Budget. It is so simple I find myself questioning all the time I spend in Quicken. Can this be? I’m going to give it a try for July.

    The best cheap date we’ve had this year. Well, let me preface this to say we built a house last year and my husband has taken a hiatus from “paid work” to participate in and oversee the construction of our home and focus on farm work. Money is tight and the kids have been in tow for EVERYTHING. I mean everything.

    A couple weekends ago we vowed to finish varnishing our dining room floor and move as much of the dining room furniture we could out of storage. The kids went to grandmas and we focused on spending the day together and finally crossing a couple projects off of our list.

    We made it fun, saved money (versus paying movers or hiring someone to do the finish work), crossed a few lingering projects off of our list and for once weren’t stressed out from juggling kids on top of our project list.

    Emilys last blog post..Maple granola

  97. Our cheap date idea is to look in the local paper to find out what local, free, events are going on. Great music, art, and more – for free! (well, for the price of gas.. which is starting to get up there!)

    Thanks! I really hope to win!

    Katies last blog post..Gluten Free Friday Week 1

  98. Our idea of a cheap date is to play a board game or video game together. It brings out the good (and exciting) parts of our competitive sides.

    Suzannes last blog post..Tally Tuesday – June 17

  99. This sounds like a fantastic product! My idea of a cheap date is just getting cozy watching a movie with a big bowl of popcorn!!

    Org Junkies last blog post..Product Highlight….

  100. avatar
    Stephanie says:

    Great giveaway! My favorite cheap date idea is to take a picnic lunch or dinner to one of the great metroparks in our area.