Category Archives: Pittsburgh

MasterChef Junior Live! #Pittsburgh #Giveaway

This post is in partnership with the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.

I’m super excited to let you guys know that we’ll be coming back with another season of Children’s Theater tickets this year! The 19/20 season will kick off soon, but in the meantime I have another rad giveaway for you from the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.

This is a totally unique event, and I’m so psyched the Trust has provided some tickets for one lucky Femme Frugality reader! If you have MasterChef Junior fans in your house, you’re probably going to be in love with the live event of the same name. Here’s what to expect at MasterChef Junior Live!:

Something tasty is heading to your hometown! Don’t miss this year’s newest hit tour – MasterChef Junior Live!

This all-new production brings the culinary hit TV show MasterChef Junior directly to you LIVE! Featuring head-to-head cooking competitions with past MasterChef Junior all-stars and fan favorites, Q&A sessions, and an overall immersive audience experience fun for all ages. Bring the whole family to see MasterChef Junior Live! It’s a recipe guaranteed for a good time!

When You Can Catch the Show

The show is happening at the Byham Theater. If you heard otherwise, that’s because the venue recently changed!

Here’s when you’ll want to head to the Byham:

Date: Sunday, October 6, 2019

Time: 7:00p

MasterChef Junior Live! Ticket Giveaway

As promised, there is a ticket giveaway for this show! Up for grabs are four (4) free tickets. Use the widget below to enter by 11:59p Eastern on October 2nd.

Yup. It’s a short timeframe for this one! That means your odds are likely to be better — especially if you come back for social shares everyday!

If you don’t want to leave your plans to chance, you can purchase your tickets here.

Best of luck to all!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Do good. Drink liquor. #PghWhiskeyFest

I have been compensated for this post. Regardless, all opinions are 100% honest and 100% my own.

It’s not often you get to do something apparently irresponsible and altruistic at once.

So when you can, take the opportunity.

I’m your good news fairy today, Pittsburgh. Waving my wand and letting you know about just such an opportunity.

Pittsburgh Magazine’s Whiskey & Fine Spirits Festival

On October 23, 2019, the Whiskey & Fine Spirits Festival — newly under the organization of Pittsburgh Magazine — will take place at Rivers Casino. It’s going to be a great time:

Pittsburgh Magazine is excited to be the new organizer of the Whiskey Festival! We are looking forward to incorporating new ideas, including a new space, into this year’s Festival that will once again feature over 250 spirits tastings and exclusive product sampling. 

The Grand Tasting will feature more than 250 premium distilled spirits from around the world including whiskey, scotch, bourbon, tequila, gin, rum, vodka, cordials and handcrafted cocktails. Guests can converse with industry representatives and experience interactive spirits lounges. Tickets also include access to dinner at the Grandview Buffet.

The VIP tasting will start at 5 with the Grand Tasting (for everyone) starts at 6:30.

Didn’t you say something about altruism?

Yes! While you’re at the tasting, you’ll be supporting The Blood Science Foundation — a nonprofit that makes sure the organization formerly known as Central Blood Bank has access to the blood the local community needs. This includes buying blood to fill in the gap between what is donated locally vs what is needed locally, funding research for blood-related diseases and funding research that ensures safe blood transfusions.

Save money!

I’m not going to lie; attending this event is expensive. It’s value-packed, but if you don’t have the money in your entertainment budget, I don’t want to encourage you to go crazy.


If you do have the money budgeted for just such an event, I happen to believe Pittsburgh Magazine events are worth it. I’m really looking forward to this one.

AND I’ve got some great news for you:

There’s still time to score early-bird pricing!

Here is the cost of admission along with what you get with each ticket. Remember, prices go up after — it goes up after September 30, 2019!

VIP Ticket

$135 $115


  • Early access to the Whiskey Festival. You get an hour and half of time in before the larger crowd shows up!
  • Voucher for $10 off $30+ purchases at the on-site Fine Wine & Good Spirits store.

Grand Tasting Ticket

$95 $80

The Grand Tasting will feature more than 250 premium distilled spirits from around the world including whiskey, scotch, bourbon, tequila, gin, rum and vodka. Guests can converse with industry representatives, experience interactive spirit lounges and enjoy delicious bites prepared by the Rivers Casino culinary team.

Designated Driver Ticket


Yup! This super smart ticket option for superheroes is way cheaper to reflect the fact you won’t be drinking. You’re still supporting The Blood Science Foundation, but you’re not going to have to pay for that liquor you’re not drinking.

Thank you, friend. You’re legit saving lives.

Get tickets here!

Partying it Up for 8 Years of Blogging

Eight years ago last week, I started blogging. It’s been a wild journey–one that started as just a hobby and turned into a full-time job which supports myself and my children.

I am perpetually surprised by each bend in the road. Perpetually grateful for it all. And moreso this year than ever, ready to celebrate all the good that’s come along with the journey.

Celebrating at Solstice

A couple weeks ago, I went to the Urban Garden Party at the Mattress Factory. This year’s theme? Solstice.

It was crazy fun. We celebrated with great food, music and floral-themed drinks. We welcomed summer in the sun, in the museum itself and down in the basement where we listened to music in “Hell.”

I met Bowie in his full Labyrinth getup, a centaur and a million wood nymphs. It was a magical night, and one that encourages me to encourage you to attend all the Mattress Factory parties. You can check out more images from the event by following on Insta.

Celebrating the Content

Over the past eight years, Femme Frugality has pumped out more than 1,000 posts. For its blogiversary, I wanted to show you guys my top eight faves. They’re not necessarily the most trafficked (though some are,) but they’re the pieces I’ve felt proud of either because I know from reader feedback that they’ve directly impacted lives, or they have inspired meaningful conversation within the personal finance community.

Children, Medicaid & Autism: State-by-State Guide

This guide was something I created out of frustration. Frustration that it didn’t yet exist.

You see, when you have an Autistic child, their needs likely aren’t covered even if you have private insurance. Medicaid coverage is essential.

But Medicaid coverage for disabled children does not exist in all states. This makes where you live a huge factor impacting your financial life.

So I created a guide. Each year, I get into the nitty gritty with representatives from all 50 states and DC to ensure this guide contains the most up-to-date information for American parents of Autistic children. It has been used by both parents and various organizations in different states across the country.

Hope: The Most Valuable Commodity

There’s a lot that goes into overcoming difficult financial circumstances. But above all else, I believe there is one quality that controls all other aspects of our ability to pursue upward mobility: Hope.

Without hope we can struggle to even believe we can achieve. And while belief is hardly all that’s necessary to reach our goals, it is an essential ingredient without which our efforts are in vain.

Self-Uniting Marriage Can Save Brides Money

This is the post I have the most feedback on. Whether that feedback comes from comments or readers, the communication has confirmed that it’s helped people across the country get married according to their own belief systems, which often do not involve clergy in today’s day and age. This methodology has also saved readers money on their weddings.

While this post applied to everyone, after I wrote it a reader notified me that some states, like California, have even more legal intricacies surrounding the concept of self-uniting marriage. As a result, we’ve been able to help people in the state drill down into the exact legal issues Californians face in this arena and how to overcome them.

Defining Success: Thoughts on God & Money

As you’ll glean from the previous favorite post, I really DGAF about how anyone does or doesn’t believe in God.

But I have been known to opine on the subject from time to time. What are the ethical implications of pursuing monetary wealth? Where should it be on our priority list? We explored this and more as we defined success relative to spirituality.

Is Food Stamp Fraud Ruining Our National Budget?

Lol. No.

But that didn’t stop the lively discussion from popping off after this post.

Virginia Beach on a Dime

I’ve told you guys plenty about all my frugal travel hacks!

But one post does stand out, if only because I’m able to track how many people this particular post has helped. I get a ton of readers booking their VA Beach hotel based on this post, and it makes me so happy. Because the hotel is so cheap yet so, so comfortable, clean and right on the beach.

Plus, hot tubs.


The Golden Rule of Budgeting

This was my first ever Rockstar Finance feature back when J$ was still running things. I wrote it in a couple minutes while I was working out of a Starbucks, and was shocked at the reception it received.

It covers a budgeting rule that will help you no matter if you use pen and paper, a spreadsheet or an app to figure out your money.

This is the Golden Rule of Budgeting. It’s crazy simple, but has helped a ton of people do better with their monthly financial goals.

The Feminist Financial Handbook

One of the great privileges of this journey has been the book offers I have received as a result. Last year, I followed through on one of those offers and wrote a tome about finances as experienced at a variety of different intersections of oppression.

It’s called The Feminist Financial Handbook, and you can learn more about what you’ll find inside by reading this post.

Come Party with Me

Sad you missed out on the Solstice party but enjoying this one?

Then come enjoy more with me at The Best of the Burgh party on July 18, 2019!

For its 50th anniversary, Pittsburgh Magazine is hosting its Golden Anniversary Best of the Burgh Party. This Spring, they asked readers to vote for their favorite businesses in the Pittsburgh region, and this event at the casino will be to honor them.

It will also be a chance to wear all your glittery gold, sample some good eats and otherwise enjoy a good time on a Thursday evening.

The event starts at 7p, and admission normally costs $50/person. But in a joint celebration of Femme Frugality’s and Pittsburgh Magazine’s anniversaries, we’re teaming up together to offer you two (2) free tickets!

You can use the widget below to to enter through July 11, 2019 at 11:59p Eastern. Best of luck, and I hope to see you there!

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Kick off Summer at the Urban Garden Party

This post is in partnership with the Mattress Factory.

Two things you should know:

  • This post is awesome for those of you who will be in Pittsburgh on June 21, 2019.
  • The first is admittedly not a frugal event, but it’s one that’s well-worth the expense if it fits comfortably within your budget.

    Here’s how to write a responsible budget.

    The second event, though is FREE!

Kick off Summer at the Mattress Factory

Pittsburgh has so many amazing museums that I don’t have one specific favorite. I have a favorite one to take my kids to when it’s super hot outside and I just want them to have something to do where they’re engaged, in an environment with central AC and I don’t shouldn’t have to chase after them.

I have another favorite for when they need to blow off steam but it’s pouring outside, another for when they need a bit of age-appropriate education over the summer as we attempt to dodge that nasty summer slide and yet another we visit when we’re feeling super yinzery and nostalgic.

Then there’s the Mattress Factory. I love the kids’ programs there. But my favorite way to visit is with other adults. Because seriously—there are events like this one:

Urban Garden Party: Solstice

When: June 21, 2018
Time: 7:30p-11:00p
Get tickets here.

Here are the deets:

“It’s the longest day of the year, and we’re celebrating the sun with an evening of ritualistic partying, featuring food and drink from dozens of the city’s best restaurants and bars. Enter a mystical world courtesy of Event Architect Thommy Conroy, and commune with other-worldly beings on the dance floor, as Beauty Slap brings the funk with their signature brass-infused sound. DJ Samuel Andres will keep the party going as we dance the night away with fairies, druids and centaurs! And if you dare to leave the revelry of the main floor behind, don’t forget our lower level, where Bad Custer will rock out in our magical underground.”

Community Garden Party

Like I said, I love the children’s programming at the Mattress Factory. If you’re looking for something free to do with the kiddos over the solstice weekend, you can check out the Community Garden Party from 1p-5p on June 23, 2019:

“Come celebrate the Solstice at our family-friendly Community Garden Party. Soak in the sun and take part in summer activities for all ages, including bubbles and cyanotypes by the Mattress Factory Education department, flower crowns by Workshop PGH and more! Face Painting by Rikki will be on hand to get you party-ready, DJ Dave Zak will have you out on the dance floor and Roadrunner Hot Dawgs & Catering will have delicious bites available for purchase. This is one sun-sational event you won’t want to miss! Special thanks to our education and community programs supporter, EQT Foundation. “

How are you welcoming in the summer season? Would love to hear about it in the comments!

Murikamification Ticket #Giveaway #Pittsburgh

This post is in partnership with the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.

Man in maroon shirt, blue jeans and sneakers positioned upside down between the edges of a fence, balancing on his shoulder. Beneath it reads, "Murikamification A dream-like performance inspired by the work of Haruki Murakami. Pittsburgh May 16-19.

It is with bittersweet excitement that I announce the final Pittsburgh Cultural Trust giveaway for the season! This show is way unique, is part of the Children’s Festival and is something you’re totally not going to want to miss.


This show is named after the famed Japanese author Huraki Murakami (hence Murikamification.) As his novels are completely unique experiences, so is this show.

Step into the daydream that unfolds before your eyes. Using the magical, surrealistic stories of Haruki Murakami as a source of inspiration, Kaiel creates an intensely physical and absurd performance trail. In each new city, the work is adapted to the local context. In each version of ‘Murikamification’, a diverse and curious audience is overwhelmed by surprising scenery in the streets of their own city. Follow the action on this moving theater piece throughout Pittsburgh’s own Cultural District.

Content Information: Best for ages 7+. This show is non-traditional and takes place throughout the Cultural Distict. Audiences will be provided with a meeting point prior to the show day and time. Artists will lead the audience on a theatrical adventure filled with comedy, acting, improv, acrobatics, dance, physical theater and music. Performances occur rain or shine. No late seating.

The show will be up and running during the Children’s Festival at the following dates/times:

  • Thursday, May 16th 10:30a
  • Friday, May 17th 11:30a
  • Friday, May 17th 3:45p
  • Saturday, May 18th 11:15a
  • Saturday, May 18th 1:15p
  • Sunday, May 19th 10:30p
  • Sunday, May 19th 2:30p

Ticket Giveaway!

To celebrate this last show of the season, Femme Frugality has partnered with Pittsburgh Cultural Trust to bring you four (4) free tickets to a showing of your choice! Use the widget below to enter.

Best of luck, and don’t forget that we have a giveaway going on for Emily Brown and the Thing, too! Enter before both close at 11:59p on May 6th, 2019!


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