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With the holidays right around the corner, you’re likely beginning to think about who you need to shop for and what to buy them to put under the tree. You’re off to a great start just by thinking about holiday shopping this early. 

If you want to save some extra money this year without looking like you’ve been pinching pennies, here are a few tried and true, easy ways to save when shopping for the entire family:

1. Look for Coupon Codes

Before you make any purchase online, you should always do a quick search for any coupon codes. Simply type in the search query “(store name) coupon code” into your search engine. RetailMeNot is a great resource for finding coupon codes as well. 

Another option for finding coupon codes is to use the browser extension Honey. After a quick install, Honey will automatically search for coupon codes for you and automatically add them to your order for effortless savings.

2. Sign Up for Retailer Emails

You should also make sure you’re an email subscriber of your favorite brands. Many retailers send emails with exclusive coupon codes, free shipping offers and other discounts. These emails will also alert you of any sales, so you can get the best deals on your favorite must-haves for you and your family.

3. Splurge on Quality Staples

For wardrobe staples such as winter coats, lightweight jackets, sneakers and jeans, it’s always worthwhile to invest in top-quality gear from the best brands. Not only will this gear last longer and perform better, but it will also hold its value so you can eventually re-sell or consign it to recoup some of your investment.

When applying this principle to children’s wear, don’t be afraid to size up so that your little ones can get more use out of it. Kids are often growing so fast that it won’t take long for them to grow into the proper fit of the garment. 

4. Pay Attention to Prices

Sure, you’re diligent about price comparisons when you’re considering whether to make a purchase, but what about after you buy it? Do you continue keeping track of the price for another week or two? At most retailers, it pays to, literally. 

Many retailers offer price adjustments for items that have a price reduction within 14 days of when you made the purchase. Typically, all you need to do is watch for a price drop, provide the retailer with your dated receipt and ask for a price adjustment to get automatically refunded the difference in price.

5. Don’t Pay for Shipping

These days, paying for shipping when shopping online is a rookie mistake. There are simply too many options when shopping online to waste your hard-earned money doing so. Some stores offer free shipping on every purchase, while others require a minimum purchase to earn these deep discounts. 

If that’s not the case, though, look into other options such as free shipping codes, joining customer loyalty programs that include free shipping as a perk and always consider using the “in-store pick-up” option when it’s available. 

Indeed, there are so many different ways to earn free shipping now that the only time it’s worth spending any money on shipping is if it is to expedite an urgently needed item.

Get Excited for the Holiday Season

After heeding our advice and looking for coupon codes, signing up for retailer emails, splurging on staple items, paying attention to pricing after making a purchase and never paying for shipping, don’t be surprised if you’re actually excited to do your holiday shopping. You may even find that you have some money left in your budget to treat yourself to a little gift.

 

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Ten Thousand Villages is preparing to host its annual Rug Sale. See why it's a don't-miss-event that supports an important cause.

Ten Thousand Villages will be hosting their upcoming rug sale at their Harper’s Point and O’Bryonville locations. 

Have you ever wanted a hand-knotted rug? Not just any rug, but one with the quality to last a lifetime and the fair trade labor standards you demand? Then Ten Thousand Villages is the place to find just that. The stores offer a large selection of Tribal, Bokhara, and Persian rugs. From classic to contemporary, rugs are available in sizes 2’x3′ to 10’x14′ as well as runners. Plus, all of the rugs found in-store are hand-knotted by fairly paid adults in Pakistan. 

The Rug Sale is held once a year to help bring the high-quality, fairly traded, hand-knotted rugs to the Cincinnati community. Ten Thousand Villages offers tips on preparing for the rug sale: 

  • When you visit our rug event, bring swatches of materials and upholstery, paint chips and pillows to help you choose a rug that will blend with your decor.
  • Measure your room as well as the area you would want your rug to cover. Large rugs are impressive while smaller rugs can be more versatile. Be flexible in sizing and you will increase the number of rugs to choose from.
  • Remember that an Oriental rug will last for generations, while your furniture, upholstery and home will change.
  • Consider rugs that speak to you, rather than one that simply matches its surroundings. Be open to taking rugs home on approval, keeping in mind the rug you finally choose may not be the rug you first selected.

The Harper’s Point Rug Sale will be held from September 18-22. As an added bonus, the Harper’s Point location will host a “From Loom to Room Intro” on September 19 at 7pm. “Hear the history and stories behind Bunyaad Fair Trade Rugs,” the website states. “Get a glimpse into how Bunyaad rugs are made, from dyeing the wool to tying the fringes.”

Those interested in attending can RSVP by calling 513-802-5721. 

The O’Bryonville location will host its Rug Sale September 24-28. This location will also host the “From Loom to Room Intro.” However, this class will be held September 26 at 7pm. To RSVP for that event, call 513-871-5840. 

To learn more about Ten Thousand Villages and their annual Rug Sale, visit http://tenthousandvillages.com/cincinnati

 

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Ever wished you could mix up fun drinks like a pro? Learn how you can while you enjoy a fun night with friends.

Since October 2015, Tonia Murphy has been mixing up delicious drinks with her bartending business, Bitters ‘n’ Sweet Bartending.

Bitters ‘n’ Sweet Bartending serves cocktails at various events such as wedding receptions, corporate events and private parties. “After bartending private events for the past few years, I’ve looked into different ways to expand my business. I have heard about other cities hosting public mixology classes and thought it would be fun to host in Cincinnati. The city continues to grow and offer different types of entertainment, so this is the perfect opportunity for me to launch the classes,” says Murphy.

The public classes will contain an experience of not only creating the cocktailsbut enjoying them after as well. 

“When each guest arrives, they will enjoy a welcome cocktail of champagne, wine, etc. and tasty appetizers to settle everyone inAll of the equipment will be set up with a personal station for each guest to create their drinks with fresh ingredients. They will be making a total of 3 cocktails, all pre-planned and created by myself,” says Murphy. “I like to have a little funso everyone will have a great time as they experience hands-on the process of making various types of cocktails! 

Guests will get to hone in their bartending skills in hopes of taking the knowledge with them to entertain for years to come. “I’m excited to share this experience  and connect with the Cincinnati area on a greater scale with this class,” says Murphy.

To sign up and learn more details, visit Eventbrite. Class size is limited. The class will be held at Six Acres Bed & Breakfast in Cincinnati, Ohio on October 13 from 2-4pm. Email bittersnsweetbartending@gmail.com with any questions.

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A new collab between a local accelerator and Findlay Market is helping entrepreneurs establish themselves in Cincinnati’s food industry through mentoring, coaching and support.

Cincy Chic: What is Findlay Kitchen & Aviatra Accelerators?
Nancy Aichholz, CEO/President of Aviatra Accelerators: Aviatra Accelerators is a full-service resource center for women-owned businesses and start-ups focusing on education, coaching, mentoring, and funding for early and mid-stage businesses. Findlay Kitchen is central to the core values of Findlay Market is the desire to support and provide for our local community. More than simply a hub for fresh, local food, the Market drives economic activity, social interaction, and an inclusive experience for all. Findlay Kitchen builds on those principles, empowering and embracing the wealth of culture and diversity that is needed to advance and sustain a vibrant food ecosystem, right here in the heart of our city.

Cincy Chic: What’s the inspiration behind EXPLORE, the new collaboration between Findlay Kitchen and Aviatra Accelerators?
Aichholz: The organizations have collaborated before but have never worked together to host a cohort dedicated to food industry entrepreneurs. Aviatra attracts a lot of women interested in food-centric startups, and we do a great job with education, coaching, and mentoring, but we don’t have the specific food industry focus that The Findlay Kitchen has. So it was obvious in discussions that a partnership would be a double whammy of impact for our women food startups and Findlay Kitchen’s male and female clients.

Cincy Chic: What makes this collaboration unique?
Aichholz: I don’t know of anyone else who has the expertise and facilities that The Findlay Kitchen has, and no one is focusing solely on women entrepreneurs across all industries as Aviatra does. It is also unique because most accelerators don’t openly collaborate, sharing curriculum, sharing clients. This can be an example to other programs that is is about the entrepreneur, not the accelerator. 

Cincy Chic: When will EXPLORE launch?
Aichholz: Our opening night of classes is scheduled for Monday, September 30 from 6-9pm. 

Cincy Chic: What does this course entail for entrepreneurs?
Aichholz: The entrepreneurs will have 9 weeks of classes, expert facilitators, coaching, mentoring, and support from others in the cohort. 

Cincy Chic: Where can readers go to learn more and follow along?
Aichholz: Interested entrepreneurs can apply at findlaykitchen.org/explore. For foodies who are not entrepreneurs who want to keep up with the latest new food options trending, watch for updates on Aviatra and Findlay Kitchen’s social media, or go to our respective websites and sign up for our newsletters at aviatra.org and findlaykitchen.org

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Always seem to be looking forward to the next payday more than you should? You might be stuck in a money story. Read on as our life coach columnist explains.

What if your lack of money isn’t your fault? And you’ve been told lies about money? Are you ready to release the stories and no longer be broke?

“Show me the money!” is a great line from the movie “Jerry McQuire” and perhaps you relate to those words.  When in lack, not having enough and verbalizing it will keep you broke and stuck in that story.

This was my story and a challenge for me for many years until I discovered how my money stories kept me broke.

What’s a money story? Here’s a few examples: 

• There’s never enough money
• The rich get richer and the poor get poorer
• I can’t afford to buy that
• I’m just not good with money

So, where did these money stories come from? Programming from your childhood mostly.  What your parents spoke about money became your story. Fortunately, these stories you’ve taken on about money can easily be rewritten so that you can create more money and not be broke. 

It takes practice over time, but it works.  Like attracts like so what you put out into the Universe will mirror back.  Using a more positive statement about your money story will allow the shift to bring more of what you desire.

Here’s how to rewire the stories from the above list:

• There’s never enough BECOMES there is more than enough
• The rich get richer and the poor get poorer BECOMES there is plenty of money for everyone
• I can’t afford to buy that BECOMES I choose not to buy that at this time
• I’m just not good with money BECOMES I am good at managing my money

Up until now your money stories are keeping you broke but today you get the opportunity to rewrite those stories so you will attract more money into your life and release the old stories that keep you broke.

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Learn more about this one-of-a-kind exhibit featuring 38 artists from all around the globe.

Image: Kudzanai Chiurai; We Live in Silence XVIIII, 2017, Pigment print on
fiber paper

21Museum Hotels welcomes brand new exhibit that is unlike any other. The exhibit itself is housed in the 21c Museum Hotel right in the heart of downtown Cincinnati. 

Alice Gray Stites is the Chief Curator and Museum Director of the 21c Museum Hotels and is enthusiastic about the interest and attraction this exhibit promises. 

The inspiration behind the exhibit is very unique, Stites explains. “The use of fashion and other forms of embellishment to reveal the complexity of identity and as an act of resistance against discrimination and cultural erasure. In the artwork on view, regalia bodies, enacts, and expresses resistance against injustice and makes visible identities, experiences, and histories that have been ignored or suppressed by dominate cultures in post-colonial societies,” she adds. “The name ‘Dress Up, Speak Up: Regalia and Resistance’ came from the central idea of the exhibit – the use of clothing, jewelry, and other forms of embellishment as an expression of resistance.”

In the exhibit, there are over 38 artists’ work displayed from all over the world. 21C Museum Hotels are always on the forefront of trendsetting artwork and Dress Up, Speak Up is no different, Stites says. In this exhibit, guests can find:

• A quilt that looks like a painting, which is in fact a portrait of three people derived from 1940s-era photographs. 
• Three Kingsby Bisa Butler
• Birch wood helmets carved by using Native American handcrafting by Jeffrey Gibson
• 2 paintings by Kehinde Wiley, who painted President Obama’s official portrait

…and more.

The public can not only view the exhibit and pieces, but experience them as well. “The artists in this exhibition role-play in real time, looking back at histories both recorded and ignored, to expose the gaps and fissures in history and its representation in both the art canon and the media. For those who inherit a legacy of resisting cultural erasure, telling untold tales – lives, remembered, or imagined – remains vital,” says Stites.

The exhibit is located on 609 Walnut Street, next door to the Contemporary Art Museum and across the street from the Aronoff. The 21c Museum Hotel is open 24 hours a day / 7 days a week. For more information, visit their website.

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A mother-daughter duo is following in the footsteps of the woman who came before them. Learn more about the floral arrangements they’re creating to make wedding dreams a reality.

Cincy Chic: What is Katie’s Blooms?
Katie Smith and Mary Walker, Owners of Katie’s Blooms: Katie’s Blooms is a flower business in Cincinnati, Ohio. We create floral arrangements for weddings and have recently expanded into the retail floral business.

Cincy Chic: What’s the inspiration behind Katie’s Blooms?
Smith and Walker: Our company came to life through a lifelong passion for flowers and a strong, three-generation history in the industry. Katie’s grandmother & Mary’s mother, Betty, opened up her own flower shop in Council Bluffs, Iowa in 1965.

Cincy Chic: Who’s behind the business?
Smith and Walker: We are a mother-daughter duo who love to laugh and work with beautiful flowers!

Katie Smith and Mary Walker of Katie’s Blooms

Cincy Chic: What makes Katie’s Booms unique?
Smith and Walker: We like to keep things real and real pretty. Floral design is in our blood and we believe our passion shines through in our arrangements! 

Cincy Chic: What floral services do you offer?
Smith and Walker: We offer consultations, delivery, clean up and setup. Our goal is to design stunning arrangements to transform your venue to provide a stress-free experience. We use fresh, locally grown flowers when they are available and offer many types of flowers. Arrangements include: aisle decor, altar decor, bouquets, boutonnieres, centerpieces, Chuppah decor, corsages, flower petals, and single flowers.

Cincy Chic: Where is Katie’s Blooms located?
Smith and Walker: We’re at 6852 Main Street in Newtown.

Cincy Chic: Where can readers go to learn more and follow along?
Smith and Walker: Visit https://www.katiesblooms.com/ or follow us on Facebook and Instagram.

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Cutting the overgrown and unhealthy parts of a plant will encourage it to produce and grow better than ever before. Our life coach columnist explains how the same goes for you. 

Say goodbye to those individuals who no longer feed your growth. Everyone in your life must earn the right to stand in your presence in order to share your story. Otherwise, let the pruning begin.

What is pruning?

Pruning is a way to let go of what no longer brings you the high vibration and energy that once existed in a relationship.  

For instance, have you discovered that when around certain people you have a feeling of low energy, one-sided conversation, and leave feeling like you can never get that time back? If so, then this is probably a relationship that no longer serves you.

As I evolved in my spiritual path and changed the way I conducted myself, over time, I realized I didn’t like who I became when I was with certain people.  I found myself shrinking, feeling worthless and often humiliated by what was projected on to me.

When I finally realized I did not like who I was becoming when with these individuals, I gave myself permission to no longer allow this to be the circumstance and let the relationship go. This is what I call standing in my power.

How does this look for you? 

If the person is someone you just can’t simply ‘write off’, learn to stand in what allows you to feel good.  The individual can do what they do, but you don’t have to react. In addition, you can say no to invitations, and you can avoid one-on-one situations.

If the person confronts you with ‘what’s wrong with you’, take that opportunity to say I am learning to listen more and be less reactive. They may snicker and laugh at the statement but when you realize how it deactivates any energetic emotions within you, over time you will feel better.

Pruning is a powerful tool that when done with loving intentions can eliminate others from spoiling your day, month, year, or life.  

Although you may fear the loss of a relationship, consider this – you standing in your power could allow others to rise up to meet you and create a better relationship in the long term.  Or when you decide to prune away the relationship, you will open yourself up to discover better and more fulfilling relationships. The choice is yours. Happy pruning!

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Get behind the scenes of a special event at CiTiRAMA where you can shop local vendors, tour cutting-edge homes, and enter for your chance to win the She Shed of your dreams!

Mark your calendars for this Sunday, September 8, for a Stylin’ Sunday Funday at CiTiRAMA! This year’s CiTiRAMA is located at Springrose Meadows at 432 W Kemper Road in Cincinnati.

The event, being held from 12-6pm, will give attendees the chance to tour the five CiTiRAMA homes and check out the first-ever Home Builders Association Demonstration Home. As guests mingle through the homes, they’ll be able to shop local vendors, enjoy light bites and treats, and sip mimosas, wine, and refreshments. 

Tickets are $15 per person or two tickets for $25 (there is a processing fee). Those who are unable to purchase tickets online can get their tickets at the tour. Each ticket includes parking, light bites, two drink tickets, and CiTiRAMA admission while supporting Dress for Success.

While at CiTiRAMA, shop the following local businesses that will have pop-up shops at the event: Jamison & Bexley, Sitting Made Simple, Ann Phillips Color Street, Wonderfully Made Beautique and Glam Parties, Scentsy with Lacey Perkins, Sweet Jazz Treats, Paparazzi by Anna Forte, Curious Concoctions, Slate + Vine, and Gigi’s Cupcakes.

To learn more about the event or to purchase your tickets, visit https://cincy.live/events/SSF.

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Learn about an upcoming event in Hyde Park designed to be the premiere resale opportunity for moms, by moms.

A few years ago, Amanda Fitzpatrick found herself desperately searching for an outlet to sell her name brand, gently-used children’s clothing and toys in the Cincinnati area. 

She turned to a local Facebook page dedicated to mothers in the area, presented her idea for the business, and asked if anyone was willing to help. That day, Second Chance Outfitters was born. With Fitzpatrick, and friend Alicia Haughaboo, taking the lead, they set out together to create this one-day event that now has hundreds of local moms clearing their calendars.

The thing that makes Second Chance Outfitters unique is the business model. The moms pay a small fee for the booth, configure and set it up how they please, set their own prices and keep 100% of what they sell. It is like their own pop-up shop for the day, something unheard of in this area. No prep work, no hassle, no crazy fees – just them,” says Fitzpatrick

The pop-up shop will have over 50 booths set up selling children’s items. “The sellers during our spring sale blew me away with the quality and types of items they brought. Name brand and gently-used clothing, shoes, carriers, bassinets, maternity clothes, etc. If you have a need, you can come to the sale and 100% find exactly what you need,” Fitzpatrick says. 

This will be the second pop-up shop produced by Second Chance Outfitters, with some new additions. “This year, the Blue Manatee is our door sponsor, we are so excited to have them! They have recently undergone new ownership and will be bringing really fun surprises with them. We will also have gift cards from local shops to raffle as well,” Fitzpatrick says. “We also have a new partnership with Parental Hope, an organization dedicated to raising infertility awareness and providing financial support to hopeful couples battling it.”

The resale event will be September 14, 8:30-11:30am in the Withrow High School gymnasium. “The space is huge and the parking is ample. We had over 350 attendees during our April sale and hope to grow that in the fall,” Fitzpatrick says. 

Withrow High School is located at 2488 Madison Road in Cincinnati. To learn more and see sneak peeks of merchandise, follow their Facebook page or email Fitzpatrick with any questions at amanda_rey@ymail.com.