Target recalls more than half-million water-absorbing Easter toys

Published: Thursday, April 13, 2017 @ 6:20 PM

(cpsc.gov)
(cpsc.gov)

Target is recalling 560,000 Easter toys after discovering that, if ingested, they can expand inside a child’s body and cause life-threatening health issues.

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The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a notice Wednesday for water-absorbent Hatch & Grow Easter Eggs, along with Easter Grow Toy and Hatch Your Own Dino, sold at Target stores nationwide from February through March for about a dollar each.

According to the CPSC recall notice, if the toy is ingested “it can expand inside a child’s body and cause intestinal obstructions, resulting in severe discomfort, vomiting, dehydration and could be life-threatening, requiring surgery for the toy to be removed.”

Parents should also be aware that the toy may not show up on an X-ray while visiting a medical professional for help, according to the CPSC recall notice.

The recall notice says no incidents or injuries have been reported.

Consumers must return the purchased items to Target immediately for a full refund. One can also call Target’s customer service number at 800-440-0680 for further assistance.

How to hack your Keurig 2.0

Published: Thursday, November 13, 2014 @ 1:08 PM
Updated: Tuesday, November 18, 2014 @ 6:00 AM

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The cost of what you pay for a cup of fancy coffee at home is going up -- not down -- thanks to a tricky move by the dominant home coffee brewing company.

How your 2.0 Keurig is ripping you off

It recently came to my attention that the Keurig people are making a 2.0 version of their machine with DRM (digital rights management).

I know this sounds crazy, but Keurig is using the Digital Millennium Copyright Act -- a controversial law designed to protect the entertainment industry -- to force you to only use proprietary K coffee pods in their new machine!

My executive producer Christa likes to make individual off-brand K cups at home using her Keurig machine. That drives her cost down to around 6 cents a cup.

But as more and more people do what Christa does, Keurig has watched their profits go down. That's because their business model is based on them making money from all the different coffee manufacturers who pay them royalties to have their coffee in K cups.

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So Keurig came out with the 2.0 machine that has a computer chip in it to sense anytime somebody is trying to save money making coffee...and it will not let them make their coffee!

Even if you buy an off-brand refillable coffee pod, if it doesn't have the Keurig logo on it, it can sense that too.

I have never had a cup of coffee in my life and I'm upset for any coffee drinker over this DRM coffee. Clarkrage!

Watch this video for the hack:

http://youtu.be/BKZvRuS1xLo

If you don't want to go through all that work, you're better served right now with the older 1.0 versions of the Keurig machines to avoid this DRM ploy. They're available for $50 to $75. Buy one of the older ones if you are price sensitive.

10,000 cases of Eggo waffles recalled

Published: Monday, September 19, 2016 @ 9:20 PM
Updated: Monday, September 19, 2016 @ 9:20 PM

Kellogg's is recalling about 10,000 cases of its Eggo Nutri-Grain Whole Wheat Waffles due to a possible listeria contamination, according to a notice on the Eggo website

The recalled waffles were sold in 25 states, including Georgia, Massachusetts, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

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Recalled products come in a 10 count box, have the UPC code 280040370 and a best if used by date of Nov. 21, 2017 or Nov. 22, 2017. 

"The recall is a result of routine tests that the company conducts which identified the potential for contamination," the notice said. "As soon as the company learned of a potential concern, it moved quickly to identify any foods that might be impacted and resolve the issue."

Listeria can cause severe illness, including fever, headaches, stiffness, nausea and abdominal pain. It is most dangerous for young children, the elderly and pregnant women. 

There have been no reports of illness to date.

Affected customers  are asked to discard the product and contact the company or a full refund by calling  1-800-962-1413, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Eastern Time or by going to Kelloggs.com for more contact information.

No other Eggo products are affected.

How to save money on Disney

Published: Monday, February 23, 2015 @ 3:14 PM
Updated: Monday, February 23, 2015 @ 3:14 PM

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With the news that Disney has raised admission prices to all of its parks, I want to tell you the best ways I know to save money when you want to visit the Mouse!

Saving money on Disney is tough, but possible

Well, now it's official. The cost of a trip to the Magic Kingdom is going up to $105 a day for Magic Kingdom. The other Orlando parks that are less popular are $97 a day. (Disneyland is $99.)

Unfortunately, the cost is the cost with the price of Disney parks. There's not a lot you can do to save, unless you're military. What you've got to do is try to save on where you stay and where you eat.

I recommend that you buy The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World as a starting point. They'll tell you all kinds of money and time-saving tips that the parks don't want you to know. That's the key to getting the best value out of a trip.

For example, it's so important to know how to navigate the parks: What order to go to things, where to go first when you arrive, what time of day to arrive. Knowing that makes a trip so much more enjoyable.

For my money, I say make sure you take ponchos from the dollar store with you for afternoon and evening thundershowers instead of buying overpriced ones for $10 at the park. Sure, they won't have cute characters on them, but they'll help you keep more of those other kinds of "characters" in your wallet.

Two other websites you need to know about too: MouseSavers.com also features a lot of info on how to save on the experience. And if you want to stay on the property, try renting a timeshare. MouseOwners.com has resources for both owners and potential renters.

When should you plan your Disney trip?

Fall is the best time for Florida vacations each year. That's the time of year that Walt Disney World offers discounts to Florida residents that fill the parks with daytrippers. That creates some traffic, but not as much as you would have encountered over the summer.

The real time to book, though, is during the first two weeks of December. Almost nobody goes on vacation at that time.

5 ways to maximize your savings on Amazon

Published: Tuesday, February 24, 2015 @ 10:23 AM
Updated: Tuesday, February 24, 2015 @ 11:25 AM

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Amazon.com is the largest online retailer in the United States. They’ve made it incredibly easy to purchase millions of items that ship straight to your door. It’s convenient, saves some hassle in running errands, and often provides a way to buy items online for less than they cost in physical stores.

If you’re a frequent Amazon shopper, it makes good financial sense for you to maximize your savings when purchasing from the company. Here are five ways to can enjoy the convenience of shopping online with Amazon while saving even more money.

Share Your Prime Membership with Others in Your Household

Prime membership offers a serious perk for frequent Amazon shoppers: free two-day shipping on thousands of items. As a Prime member you also receive unlimited streaming of movies and video offered on Amazon Instant Video, and you can also borrow one e-book from the Prime library for free each month.

But Prime also costs users $99 for the year. That leaves you with lots of books to borrow, videos to watch, and purchases to make to get the free shipping if you want to offset the cost of membership.

Unless, of course, you share Prime membership with someone else and split the cost.

Amazon does allow you to add individuals onto your Prime account, but technically they should be members of your household. Here’s what Amazon says about sharing Prime benefits:

"Free or paid Amazon Prime members can share their shipping benefits with up to four additional family members living in the same household. If you purchase a Prime membership for a small business, you may invite up to four co-workers to shop with this corporate account."

It seems that the rules aren’t strict on the same-household stipulation. People sharing your Prime benefits can ship to multiple addresses, so it’s currently possible to add a friend who doesn’t live with you.

But Amazon may make this harder to do at any time, and you’ll need to decide for yourself if flouting the stated guidelines is something you want to do.

ARTICLE: Read Clark's take on Amazon Prime membership

Get a Discount on Prime Membership

Certain groups enjoy Prime membership discounts, too.

If you’re a student with a valid .edu email address, you can sign up for a free trial of Amazon Student. You can also enjoy a discounted membership rate of $39 per year after your initial trial ends. Students can earn $10 to spend on Amazon each time they refer a friend to sign up, too.

If you’re a parent, you may want to give Amazon Mom a try. You’ll receive a three-month trial period that gives you the benefit of free shipping, but this service comes with a $99 yearly fee (just like Prime) that kicks in after your trial ends. Amazon Mom perks include big discounts on staples like diapers and other family essentials.

 

Look Through the Warehouse

The Amazon Warehouse, that is. Amazon has a section on its site called Warehouse Deals, where you can shop for open box and returned items and items that were damaged in transit. Because the items aren’t in “perfect” condition for retail sale, they’re offered here at discounted prices.

 

Purchase Everyday Items with Subscribe & Save

On many household essentials and grocery items, Amazon offers you the option to “subscribe” to the product and offers a discounted price if you do so. This is the retailer’s Subscribe and Save program.

You’ll receive regular shipments of the item you subscribed to, but for as much as 15% off the regular price.

 

Use Tools to Spot Additional Savings

If you’re a frequent online shopper and want to get serious about savings, there are two tools that will help you.

The first is a browser extension called Honey (which works with any online shopping cart, not just Amazon). Honey is a free tool that you can download and activate. Once you’ve loaded up an online shopping cart, you can use this tool to automatically search for and apply discount and promo codes.

The second is a website that helps you track prices of items on Amazon. This can help you identify sales cycles to help you score the best deal. The site is hard to forget thanks to its bizarre name: CamelCamelCamel.

And of course, you can always browse through Amazon’s own coupons to see if you can score additional savings.

Amazon is a great place for consumers to shop for almost anything imaginable. Make sure you get the very best deal and maximize your savings with these tips.

ARTICLE: Amazon offers employees $5,000 to quit

 



About the author: Kali Hawlk is a freelance writer and content manager currently working on building her business and becoming a full-time solopreneur. She's passionate about personal finance, careers and business, and all things Gen Y--and she writes about it all on her blog, Common Sense Millennial. An avid runner, she enjoys getting outside as often as possible when she's not immersed in blogging and helping other small businesses build and manage their online presence. Connect with her on Twitter @KaliHawlk.