Monday, September 28, 2009

Menu Plan Monday - Sept 28th



Last week had it's ups and downs. There were some good recipes and some not so good recipes and some necessary tweaks to our menu plan. Sunday and Monday went off without a hitch! And I'm proud to say my family was very receptive to the new "Meatless Monday" tradition! On Tuesday, I was preparing to make the Ricotta & Ham Stuffed Chicken Breasts when I realized my ricotta was not fit for human consumption! So we just grilled the chicken breasts with a little BBQ sauce instead. On Thursday, I just did not feel like eating fish, so I made Bruschetta Chicken Bake instead. It's an easy dish that is one of our family's favorites, so it was a breeze to change things up for that night.

Now on to this week's menu:

Sunday - Rosemary Grilled Steak with Tomato Jam, Loaded Potato Skins, Baked Beans and Biscuits

Meatless Monday - Blueberry Pancakes, Scrambled Eggs

Tuesday - Mexican Chicken-and-Rice Casserole, Cornbread Muffins

Wednesday - Grilled Pepper, Onion & Sausage Calzones, Salad

Thursday - Tilapia Piccata, Rice-a-Roni, Broccoli, Honey Wheat Bread

Friday - Salisbury Steak (frozen meal), Mashed Potatoes (using potato reserved from Monday), Fried Zucchini, Biscuits

Saturday - We have a party to attend, so no cooking for me!

For more menu planning resources, head on over to Menu Plan Monday at Orgjunkie.com. Have a great week!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Menu Plan Monday - Sept 21st


I'm working on organizing my office and in the process, I sorted through all my old magazines. I tore/clipped any recipes I wanted to try or craft projects to make and set the rest aside to be used for craft projects, school projects, etc. So now I'm on to trying all those yummy recipes in my "I'd like to try that someday" recipe stack!

I'm also trying to start implementing "Meatless Mondays" in our household. It's a bit of a challenge because we have quite a few picky eaters and this is a brand new concept for them. We'll see how it goes.

Now on to the menu:

Sun - Steak with Sherry Mushroom Sauce, Baked Potatoes, Corn
Mon - Refried Bean Tostadas, Spanish Rice
Tue - Ricotta & Ham Stuffed Chicken Breasts, Pasta Side, Green Beans, Biscuits
Wed - Mushroom & Sweet Onion Cheesesteaks, Mac & Cheese
Thu - Baked Tilapia (with Ritz crackers), Rice Side, Squash Casserole
Fri - Pork Medallions with Lemon Sauce, Rosemary Roasted Potatoes, Corn on the Cob
Sat - Sausage Ratatouille (from Oct '09 Family Fun Magazine), Cornbread

For more menu planning resources, head on over to Menu Plan Monday at orgjunkie.com. Have a great week!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Dinner for Four for $2.00

I just served my family a yummy dinner for an estimated $2.00 total for the entire dinner for a family of four! That certainly made every bite taste even better! We had Spaghetti with Meatballs and Garlic Bread. Here's the breakdown:

1/2 bag Schwan's Italian Style Meatballs - Free (promotion details here)
Classico Pasta Sauce - approx. $1.25 (from Tom Thumb Living Well promo)
Dreamfield's Penne Pasta - approx. $0.41 (from Tom Thumb Living Well promo)
2 Archer Farms Artisan Mini Baguettes - Free (used Target coupon from HotCouponWorld)
4 Tbsp Butter
Garlic Powder to taste
Dried Basil to taste

The sauce and pasta cost me a total of $1.66 and I'm not going to figure out the cost of the butter, garlic and basil (which would be minimal) so I'm just rounding up to $2.00 total.

I sliced the baguettes, mixed some garlic and basil with the butter, slathered it on and popped them in the oven for 5-10 minutes for some yummy garlic bread! Meanwhile, I boiled some pasta and let the sauce and meatballs simmer in a pot on the stove. Turned out to be a really cheap, really simple dinner!

Note: While the Schwan's and Target deals are still active, the Tom Thumb Living Well promo has long since expired. I just wanted to post this as an example to all of you of why it pays to stock up when you find a great deal! If I hadn't had the extra pasta and sauce in my pantry, this meal would have easily cost me double!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

My Top Ten Grocery Savings Tips

A recent discussion on one of my mommy groups prompted me to come up with a list to help people save money on their grocery bill and stick to a monthly budget. I couldn't sleep and wrote this list at 3am so I apologize if parts of it are less than stellar, but I wanted to post it here nonetheless, so that some of you might benefit as well!

1. Plan Your Meals. There are generally two schools of thought on this: a) plan a whole month at a time, or b) plan weekly based on what's on sale. To really save money, I like to plan weekly, based on what's in the weekly store ads. Basically, you should create a master list of the meals you make on a regular basis, what your family likes to eat, including sides and such. Then you can take inventory of what you have on hand, compare that to what's on sale for the week, and plan accordingly. Many sites will summarize the best deals in the grocery ads for you each week. For the DFW area, I like http://YourCouponBuddy.com, http://Couponing101.com, http://SurvivingtheStores.com. For other areas (since prices vary by region), check the Grocery Gathering at http://BeCentsAble.net for listings in your area. Another tip, plan your use of fresh fruits/veggies around what's in season. Even though most produce items are available to us year-round, if an item is in season, it's going to be much cheaper than an out of season product that has to be shipped in from another location.

2. Buy Extra on Sale. Most sales cycle every few weeks, meaning that what's on sale this week will likely be on sale again in a few weeks. If there is an item your family uses regularly, it makes since to buy enough when it is on sale to last you till the next sale. For instance, my family loves boneless, skinless chicken breasts. They are on sale this weekend at Albertson's for $1.68/lb. Rather than buy a little this week at that price and then buy more next week at $2.99 (or more) per pound, I'll buy enough to last us a few weeks until the next sale. This seems only logical and while many of us do this with meat, you'd be surprised how many people balk at doing this with other items. Even fresh fruits and veggies can be bought in bulk and then peeled, chopped, diced, etc and frozen for future use.

3. Shop More Than One Store. For some of you who live in more rural areas, this might not be as feasible to do, but for most of us who live in larger cities, we have our pick of grocery stores nearby. It may take a bit more time but the savings are worth it in the long run. Best case: Throw a cooler in your trunk and make the rounds purchasing only the best deals at each store. At the very least: Compare the ads and choose the store that has the best deals on the majority of the items you need that week. Also, check to see if your store will price-match competitor's ads. Wal-Mart will match competitor's ad prices, but sometimes the deal is better at a store that will double/triple coupons.

4. Forget Brand Loyalty. You can save so much more by purchasing store brands or even purchasing a different name brand that's on sale for a lower price that week. And a lot of the store brands are manufactured by the same people who make your favorite name brands anyway. If there is something that you absolutely can't budge on (for me it's my Colgate Total toothpaste), that's fine, just make sure you stock up when you find the best deal. But for most items, you'll learn it doesn't really matter.

5. Use Coupons. I hear people say all the time that they don't have time to use coupons. I laugh when I hear that! The sites listed above (and many others) will tell you if there is a coupon available to match with a sale and where to find that coupon. If it was a coupon that came out in the paper, they'll tell you what week it came; if it's a printable coupon, they'll provide a link to the site to print the coupon. The hard part is already done for you! Just cut it out and take it with you.

6. Sign up for Savings. If there is a product your family loves, go to their website and see if there is a mailing list or email list to sign up for. You can receive coupons and sometimes even free samples for doing so. This is especially helpful for items such as organic products that don't have newspaper coupons as often. And be sure to sign up for your favorite stores' email and mailing lists too. They usually send special coupons to their loyal customers. (You can create a separate email address specifically for this purpose so the emails don't crowd your inbox.)

7. Know Where to Find Your Store's Bargains. Most stores have a policy of marking down perishable items shortly before they "Sell By" date is up. Meat, bread, eggs and deli items are especially prone to this practice. Meat can be purchased for deep discounts when it is near the "Sell By" date and is still perfectly fine if used or frozen by that date. So stock up when it's cheap and fill your freezer for later! Bread, cheese, lunch meat and many other items can also be frozen for later use if you cannot consume it before the "Best if Used By" date. Here's a good list of things you can freeze for later use: http://www.yourfrugalbuddy.com/2009/08/you-can-freeze-that.html

8. Think Outside the Major Grocers. Ethnic grocery stores are treasure troves of bargains! They often have great deals on meat, fresh veggies and other items that are prominent in their regional cuisine. I found a great little Mexican grocery store near my house that sells rice and beans in bulk, has very cheap limes and peppers of all kinds and they always have the best meat. I even found large containers of spices for a fraction of what I would pay at my local grocery store. Another favorite of mine are bread outlet stores, such as Mrs. Baird's. Not only can you find great deals on bread, but also chips, snack cakes, bagels, english muffins, all sorts of items. And my local store offers a punch card that rewards frequent shoppers with free items! But my favorite place of all has got to be my local Farmer's Market, bar none! The best choice of fresh fruits and veggies and often cheaper than my grocery stores' sale prices!

9. Grow or Pick Your Own Veggies/Fruit. Start a small garden with your favorite veggies, fruits or herbs. I'm currently growing onions, bell peppers, rosemary, basil and parsley in a small container garden in my backyard. Look for Pick-Your-Own Vegetable farms in your area where you can spend some family time together cashing in on a great bargain. http://www.pickyourown.org/ is a great place to start hunting. Or join a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) or co-op where you pay a set amount to help sustain a farm in exchange for a share of the harvests each month. There are many different options for many different budgets. Try this site for details: http://www.localharvest.org/csa/

10. Make Your Own Convenience Packs. Instead of buying pre-packaged convenience items, buy larger packages and make your own convenience packs. When you get home, spend about 20 minutes a week chopping up veggies, portioning out chips and snacks, and putting them in ziploc baggies or reusable containers. You'll save several dollars each week because you aren't paying for all that extra packaging! Don't believe me, check out the cost comparison one mom did: http://frugalissafinds.blogspot.com/2009/08/back-to-school-lunches.html

If you have any other tips, I'd love to hear them - leave me a comment below!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Win a $25 Target Giftcard

Your Coupon Buddy and Your Frugal Buddy are giving away a $25 Target giftcard! Bonus: If you win, and you are a (verified) subscriber to BOTH Your Coupon Buddy and Your Frugal Buddy, your $25 Target gift card will turn into a $50 gift card!

Click here to enter!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Kellogg Cereal Deal at Albertson's

The Kellogg Cereal Deal is back at Albertson's! Buy 4 cereals for $14, Get 3 Free, PLUS get 3 coupons for a Gallon of Milk at checkout! So you're getting 7 boxes of cereal and 3 gallons of milk for only $14. Pair this with our awesome Kellogg printables we got a couple weeks ago and you've got yourself a heck of a deal - 7 boxes of cereal and 3 gallons of milk for only $14. Plus, there's an in-ad coupon to get a box of Pop-Tarts for $0.99 when you buy 4 Kellogg Cereal that you can combine with this deal!

I just heard that some of the Kellogg coupons might be expired. I did the deal 3 times this morning with no problems but I didn't check my coupons beforehand, so I hope they were good! The word on the street is that some of them have different expiration dates, so depending on when you printed them, they might still be good!

Even without the coupons, it's still a great deal! I typically pay $1.99 for a gallon of milk so the 3 free gallons of milk are worth $6 to me (though each coupon is good for up to $3). So basically without coupons, it would be like paying $8 for 7 boxes of cereal. Pretty cool!

My Albertson's Trip - 6-3-09


I had a pretty good haul at Albertson's today! I went specifically for the Kellogg deal but found a couple of unexpected deals too! I made 3 transactions to get this all in.

21 boxes of Kellogg Cereal - 4 for $14, get 3 Free & 3 Free Gallon of Milk Coupons
Used: 19 $1/1 Kellogg printables - no longer available (and see Kellogg Deal post for details)
Final Price: $1.10 each plus 9 free gallons of milk!

1 Kellogg Pop-Tarts - $2.49
Was supposed to use coupon in ad to make it $0.99 but forgot to use coupon! :(

4 Mars Candy Bars - $0.99 each
Used: 4 Free Mars Candy Bar coupons from RealChocolate.com - max coupon value: $0.85
Final Price: $0.19 each (should've checked my coupon fine print first!)

1 Oscar Mayer Jumbo Beef Franks - $4.69
Used: 1 Free Oscar Mayer Beef Franks coupon - max coupon value: $4.50
Final Price: $0.19 (again, should've read the fine print!)

2 Clorox Bleach - $1.67 each
Used: $2/1 printable from Clorox MomWire
Final Price: Free plus $0.33 overage!

3 Glade Fabric & Air Refreshers - $4.29 each
Used: Free item peelie on bottles
Final Price: Free!

2 - 1 lb pkg Laura's Lean Ground Beef
Reduced for Quick Sale - $3.26 and $3.11

2 - 1.2 lb pkg Honeysuckle White Ground Turkey
Reduced for Quick Sale - $2.49 each

2 Honeysuckle White Turkey Breast Cutlets - $4.34 and $3.74 ($2.99/lb)
Gain Dryer Sheets - $4.39
1 Little Debbie Nutty Bars - $1.00 (Impulse Buy)
2 Bush's Baked Beans - $2 each
7 Albertson's Canned Tomato Products - $0.89-0.99 each
Downy Wrinkle Releaser - $3.99 (special request from my Grandma!)
1 Loaf of Bread - $1.59 (not pictured)
2 Dreyer's Dibs - $2.50 (not pictured)

2 Double Sunday Papers
One rang up $2.00 and the other rang up $2.89, not sure why the difference???

Total OOP: $76.67
Total Savings: $104.30 (58% Savings)

Since I got 9 coupons for a free gallon of milk and each of those coupons is worth up to $3 each, if you factor in that additional savings it brings my total savings up to $131.30 or 73%. It would have been even better if I'd just stuck to the sale items!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Giveaway Roundup: 6-2-09

I'm busy entering various blog giveaways, so I'll be rounding them all up here for you. I've been entering tons of giveaways lately and so far I've actually won a few things! It really is possible!!

Rachel at Surviving The Stores is giving away a free one night stay to at the Great Wolf Lodge in Grapevine, TX, which includes two days at the waterpark! I've been dying to stay there! Giveaway ends June 9th.

Your Coupon Buddy is giving away a $10 gift card to JCPenney for their weekly Hump Day giveaway. Contest ends June 6th.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Yummy Orange Chicken


My daughter loves the Orange Chicken she gets at school and has been begging me to make some at home so tonight I finally gave it a shot. It turned out way better than I even imagined! It was so yummy that she polished off all the extra!

I used this wannabe Panda Express Orange Chicken recipe from RecipeZaar and it worked beautifully! I was worried at first because I realized at the last minute that I was out of Soy Sauce but I used this Soy Sauce Substitute. I have to say this was amazingly close to real Soy Sauce! I was definitely impressed! I also omitted the chili pepper and the onion because I didn't have any handy.

All in all, I think we have a new favorite!!

My Old Navy Score with $75 off $100 coupon


If you haven't heard by now, and I don't know how you could avoid it because I've been shouting it everywhere, I scored one of those awesome $75 off $100 coupons from OldNavyWeekly.com last night!!!

My daughter and I went today and got some great deals. (Sorry for the crappy picture, I only had a camera phone to work with.)

2 Women's Perfect Tees - $10 each
2 Women's Ruched Crochet-Trim Henleys - $14.50 each
3 Pair Panties - 3 for $12
1 Women's Denim Mini Skirt - $15
2 Girls' Crochet-Trim Camis - $4.99 each on clearance (Only 1 is pictured because she put the other one on and ran out the door before I could snap the pic!)
2 Girls' Printed Cap-Sleeve V-Neck Tees - 2 for $10
1 Girls' Denim Mini Skirt - $15

Rang up $120.14 after tax. But then the lady scanned my awesome coupon and my total was....

$11.89

Apparently, there's a glitch in their computer that caused the coupon to take off $100 instead of just $75! I paid less than $1 for each item!!! And now my daughter and I have matching denim minis! Oh Happy Day!!!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Summer Reading Programs for Kids

There are lots of free Summer Reading Clubs for kids to earn cool prizes. Obvious sources include your local library, schools and city programs, but here are some of my favorites that are open to most anyone:

Half Price Books: Feed Your Brain! Kids can earn a $3 shopping card each week for reading just 15 minutes a day. Maximize your savings by selling your books back to the store once you are finished with them! Don't forget, you can also sell your magazines! (Sign up instore for this one)

Barnes & Noble Summer Reading will reward kids with a free paperback book when they read just 8 books this summer!

Borders Kids Reading Challenge allows kids to save 50% or more on selected items when they read 8 books this summer!

Scholastic Summer Challenge gives kids a chance to read books, earn points, win prizes and sweepstakes, help a worthy cause and achieve a world record!

H-E-Buddy Reading Club lets kids earn a cool T-shirt for reading 10 books this summer! While you're there, don't forget to click on Clubs & Contests to register for other great clubs for even more fun and prizes!

TDBanknorth will make a $10 deposit into a Young Saver Account for your child when they read 10 books this summer! This offer is available at TDBanknorth locations in CT, MA, ME, NH, NJ, NY, PA, and VT.

The AAPC is sponsoring a Sensory Gang Summer Reading Program specifically for kids with Autism. Upon completing the reading log, kids will earn a certificate of completion and a $25 AAPC gift certificate!

Know of any national summer reading clubs that are not mentioned here? Send them to me and I'll add them to the list!

JCPenney: $10 off $25 plus Awesome Clearance Savings

I wanted to tell you about this sooner, but I've been so behind after being without internet all week. However, the coupon is still good through Tuesday, June 2nd, so there's still time!

To use the coupon to save $10 off $25 online at JCPenney.com, click on "Checkout + Promo Code" and enter the code 10GIFT. If you have your order shipped to the store, shipping will only be about $4.50.

Or you can go here to print out the coupon to use at the store! They are having a great clearance sale right now! I bought a gorgeous dress that was originally $80 but was on sale for $47.99. After my coupon savings and tax, I paid $41.03 out of pocket. I know I could have got a better deal by sticking closer to the $25 minimum but the dress was just too awesome to pass up: http://tinyurl.com/n5lsqd.

Thanks to Nickels-n-Dimes for this awesome deal!

OldNavyWeekly.com IS UP NOW!

UPDATE: I just got the $75 off $100 coupon!!!!! Click on the tree behind the lady in the red tee, then catch that pesky parrot!!!

This is the first time I've seen them do it on a Sunday, so I have no idea what time they're gonna update! But keep your eye on OldNavyWeekly.com today, including the totally awesome $75 of $100 coupon that's back this week! Combine any of these coupons with the great sales Old Navy's been having and you'll have yourself a heck of a deal!

I'll update this post with the specifics for each coupon once I the site is up.

Fresh Express/Chiquita Fresh Funds

Fresh Express/Chiquita Fresh Funds is a promotion from Chiquita and Fresh Express that allows you to collect points from specially-marked packages to redeem for cool prizes and bid on auctions for even cooler items!

And right now, there is a code that will allow you to get 50 bonus points to get you started! Just enter the code FRESHFUNDS for 50 free points!

Thanks to Freebies4Mom for this latest discovery! I had two bags of salad in my fridge with codes on them that almost went to waste!

NWA Deals says that you can find codes on specially-marked bag of Chiquita and Fresh Express products will have a Fresh Funds point on the back of the package. Here's a List:

Chiquita
Fruit & Veggie Bites

Fresh Express
Crispy Lettuce
Tender Lettuce Mixes
Flavorful Whole Tender Leaf Blends
Complete Salad Kits
Specialties* (Organics not included)

Friday, May 29, 2009

Technical Difficulties

I have been having some serious trouble with my AT&T U-verse service so I haven't had internet access all week. I finally convinced them to send a technician out this afternoon, so hopefully I'll be able to get back on track today. Just wanted to update everyone and assure you that I am still here! See you soon!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

OldNavyWeekly.com Coupons Are Up!

They're up early tonight! Old Navy is giving out coupons on their OldNavyWeekly.com site each week. The site updates each Thursday night (used to be late night/early Friday AM, but now it seems to be earlier Thursday evening) with new coupons. You have to perform little actions with the supermodelquins in order to make the coupons appear. Here's the info I got from SlickDeals.net:

$60 off $100 = take yellow pail from Owen and drag to water in swimming pool with Heather and Josh, then drag pail to Wesley, Kimmy, and Michelle. Continue until box is full of water (GONE for now)

$45 off $100 = take spray can from Heather and drag to Amy twice (GONE for now)

$20 off $100 = drag orange/white striped bag to Heather's right hand

$15 off $75 = play video, click coffee in Josh's hand at .10 and click Heather's belly at .04 or all the flip flops she's holding at .05/.06

$10 off $50 = put Wesley's head back on his body

$5 off $50 = click Kelly's bottle in her hand

Even though the best coupons are gone for now, check back throughout the week because they randomly add more sometimes.

Don't forget! Old Navy flip-flops will be $1 this Saturday morning, in-store only! My cashier said they sold out last year by 10:30am so get there early!

Most Awesome Giveaway Ever!

So I'm sitting here in front of my computer, munching on my free sample of Total Cranberry Crunch (free sample's no longer available, but go here for $1 coupon), browsing the many blogs I follow, when lo and behold, I find the most awesome giveaway ever!! Metropolitan Mama is giving away a laptop!!!!

The prize is a Toshiba Portege M750 ($1,699 value) and a handy Small Phantom bag from STM Bags to carry it around in! Oh how I want to win this with all my might! I told you it was awesome!! So run, don't walk, to Metropolitan Mama and enter today! Contest ends Friday, May 22nd.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

One Lovely Blog Award


I just received my very first blog award! I'm so proud! Thanks to Brighten Your Eyes With Savings for the award! I'm flattered that you thought my little ol' blog worthy of an award!

Here are the rules:
1) Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award, and his or her blog link.
2) Pass the award to 15 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

I'm still fairly new to the blogging community, so let's see if I can come up with a full 15...

1) Heathermama - my buddy IRL who got me into this blogging thing
2) Your Coupon Buddy - great site all-around
3) The Broke-Ass Bride - my latest find! so awesome! the name says it all!
4) Free Sample Freak - more freebies than you can imagine
5) Jane4Girls $800 Annual Budget - my hero, my inspiration!
6) Balancing Beauty and Bedlam - my frugal-fashion guru
7) The Freebie Blogger - more great freebies!
8) Grammy Janet's Place - lots of rocking giveaways
9) News Around the Blogs - a wrap-up of the best frugal blogger deals
10) Couponing 101 - great DFW area weekly coupon matchups
11) Be Centsable - The Grocery Gathering is a must-stop for me each week
12) Never Pay Retail Again - savings for everything else!
13) Surviving the Stores - tons of great deals
14) $5 Dollar Dinners - yummy, cheap meal ideas
15) Two of a Kind, Working on a Full House - lots of great giveaways!

Have Some Fun With Instant Win Games

There is a new instant win game to play! Yay!

Dress your salads in style by playing the Restaurant Style Salads at Home instant win game for a chance to win a salad ingredient coupon for a FREE product from Dole, Marie's Dressing, Fresh Gourmet or Athenos! You can play this game daily thru 7/12/09. If you're not an Instant Win Game Winner you'll receive an additional opportunity that day to play the Game by answering trivia questions regarding various products.

A maximum of 5,600 Game Prizes are available to be won throughout the Promotion Period. The Game Prize will be one of the following coupons, each worth up to $3.99 when purchasing that product: a Dole Salads Coupon; a Marie's Salad Dressing Coupon; a Fresh Gourmet Coupon good on any Fresh Gourmet product; a Dole Mandarin Orange Coupon; or an Athenos Feta Cheese Coupon.Please keep in mind that you can ONLY win once per household! Game Prizes will be mailed to each verified Winner within 6-8 weeks.

Don't forget that the Pace Instant Win game is still going on:
Pace is giving 160,000 first price winners a coupon for a FREE Pace product, with a maximum value of $4! The odds of winning seem better then most sweepstakes. If you win you'll be able to print your coupon right away too. Remember to press the browser back button to print a total of two FREE coupons (possibly more)!Wanna try?!?Just go on over here and register or log in to play. If you need a code you can use SAL321.

Thanks to It's Hip to Save! for the heads-up on these!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Giveaway Roundup

I'm entering several giveaways tonight so I thought I'd round them all up for ya'll real quick.

Suzy Q Homemaker is giving away a $30 gift card to 1-800-Flowers. Contest ends May 16th at 10am.

Simply Being Mommy is giving away 3 copies of System Mechanic. Contest ends May 21st at 10pm.

News Around the Blogs is giving away a Save the Ta-Tas Gift Basket - and supporting a great cause too! Contest ends May 17th.

Two of a Kind, Working on a Full House is giving away a $25 Build-A-Bear Gift Card. Contest ends May 15th at 11:59pm.

Two of a Kind, Working on a Full House is also giving away a 2-year subscription to All You magazine which is chock full of awesome coupons each month! Contest ends May 20th at 11:59pm.

Therapeutic (Ad-Free) is giving away a $250 Visa Gift Card! How cool is that? Contest ends July 8th.

AuntieThesis is giving away $150 worth of Carolina Pad Office Supplies! Just in time for next school year! Contest ends May 25th.

Grammy Janet's Place is giving away a large mailer envelope full of coupon inserts! At least 20 coupon inserts with savings of over $300. Great way to build your coupon stash! Contest ends May 24th.

Couponing 101 is giving away The Couponizer - a 7-piece coupon organizer system! Contest ends May 20th at 11:50pm.

RedPlum Roundup

Lots of great printables from RedPlum, including:


$2 off Quaker Oatmeal Pancake Mix
$1 off Del Monte Fruit Chillers
$1 off any Eucerin Body product
$1.50/2 Kellogg's Frosted Mini-Wheats, All-Bran or Raisin Bran
$1/3 Rice-a-Roni
$1/2 Aunt Jemima Mix or Syrup
$1 Nivea for Men
$1 Snuggle Liquid Fabric Softener or Dryer Sheets
$1 off Marzetti Produce Dressing
$1 any Fast Fixin' Product
$1.50/2 Poise Pads
$1.50/2 Poise Liners
$1/2 Minute Rice Ready to Serve
$0.50 off Minute Rice
$1 off Caltrate
$1 off Excedrin Express Gels
$1 off Excedrin Migraine
$1 off Excedrin PM
$1 off Excedrin Back & Body
$1.50/2 Hidden Valley Ranch Salad Dressings
$3 off Huggies Pure & Natural
Free box of Meaty Bone dog biscuits when you buy Meaty Bone Chew-lotta or Denta-Delicious



Head on over to RedPlum.com to print these goodies!

More Printable Coupons

$2 off Dr. Scholl's For Her Insoles - these things feel so good on your tootsies!


$1 off Cranergy Juice Drink

$2 off Post Trail Mix Crunch - I love this cereal!

Become a fan of Snapple on Facebook to get a coupon for Buy One Get One Free Snapple (up to $1.99). (Thanks to Heather at Freebies4Mom for this one!)

You can also print more of the great Kraft coupons from Albertsons. I was able to print 2 more of each coupon from this site, and they don't say anything about Albertson's on them so you can use them at any store!

Get $20 in Slim Fast Coupons! First, sign up HERE, then activate your account through email, log into your account, and then click where it says "TV offers" on the bottom right of the page. You will be able to print out some great coupons and then they will send you more in about 3 weeks!

Awesome Giveaway: $500 Home Depot Gift Card

Yep! I had to read it twice too! But Heather at Freebies4Mom is really giving away a $500 Home Depot Gift Card! I could finally get that patio furniture I've been wanting forever! Or maybe a swing for my backyard!! Head on over to Freebies4Mom and enter today! Contest ends June 23rd.

Good Luck!

Free Kellogg's All-Bran Promise Pack

Get a free Kellogg's All-Bran Promise Pack that samples and coupons. Your Promise Pack will include: Strawberry Medley cereal sample, Strawberry Drizzle Fiber bar, Red Raspberry Fiber drink mix, and coupons (total value of $4 in savings). I had to register for an "All-K Pass" in order to request this sample, but it was easy to do. You can expect to receive your Promise Pack in 4 to 6 weeks.

Thanks to Heather at Freebies4Mom for this little gem.

Giveaway: $5 Cash Card

It's Hump Day Giveaway time over at YourCouponBuddy.com. This weeks prize is a $5 Cash Card from General Mills. Hurry over for a chance to win!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Free Jennie-O Ground Turkey Coupon

During the Biggest Loser finale tonight (8/7c), Jennie-O will be giving away $5 coupons for ground turkey (which should make it free at some stores!). An ad will play during the finale letting you know that the coupons are available on their website HERE. I'll probably just start trying at 7:00! :)

The coupons are only available to the first 25,000 and I am sure they will go QUICK!

Thanks to Rachel at Surviving the Stores for this deal!

Menu Plan Monday - May 11


Better late than never, right? ;)

Monday - Chicken Parmesan, Penne pasta with garlic and olive oil
Tuesday - German Pork Chops, Rice-A-Roni, Corn, Crescent Rolls
Wednesday - Grandma's Sunday Roast, Potatoes & Veggies, Biscuits
Thursday - Dinner at Mom's using the new smoker we got her for Mother's Day!
Friday - Shepherd's Pie*, Salad, Biscuits
Saturday - Taco Ring, Salad
Sunday - Bourbon Chicken with Garlic, Velveeta Shells & Cheese, Green Beans, Rolls

For the Shepherd's Pie, I will use leftover meat from Wednesday night, the veggies in my freezer stash and a package of Homemade Gourmet Mom's Smashed Potatoes. Whenever we have corn or green beans with dinner and have a spoon or two leftover, I toss them in a container in the freezer to use for soups, stews or recipes like this. So this recipe will cost me almost nothing and be oh so yummy!

For more menu planning resources, head on over to Menu Plan Monday. Have a great week!

Giveaway: Crystal Aura

Crystal Aura is Avon's Premier sophisticated and luminous fruity floral fragrance captured in a multi-faceted rectangular bottle with a Swarovski pendant around its neck. Win it today at Heathermama's blog!

Good Luck!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Hot New Printable Coupons!

My printer is smoking from all the work this afternoon! There are over $50 in Kraft printable coupons available now! These coupons are HOT, are going fast and are only available in limited quantities. Once they are gone, they're gone! So hurry and print yours now!

You can print the coupons directly from the Coupons.com widget on my sidebar or visit Coupons.com. You should be able to print 2 each of the coupons from Coupons.com and then you can head on over to KraftFoods.com to print 2 more of each of the coupons.

Now I just need to find a good deal on ink for my poor printer! :)

And the winner is....

I am so sorry that I didn't get to post this last night. Our Mother's Day gift to my grandmother was that everyone went to her house yesterday and did a whole bunch of yard work and stuff she needed done. We worked our little butts off and I was so tired last night I didn't even get on the computer at all!

I used Random.org to choose the winning entry and the winner of the $10 GameStop giftcard is........

Comment #3: shbrighteyes

Congratulations! I will be emailing you with instructions to redeem your prize.

And thanks to all who entered!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Giveaway: 15 Coupon Inserts - 5 Winners!

Rachel at Surviving the Stores is hosting an awesome giveaway! Head on over to her blog to enter to win one of 5 sets of 5 each of the 3 coupons inserts from this past Sunday's paper! This would be a great way to start building your coupon stash for those of you just starting out!

Good Luck!

KFC Raincheck

Remember those cool coupons we printed earlier this week for the free KFC Grilled Chicken Meal? Due to the overwhelming response KFC is not going to honor the coupon any longer.

BUT, if you bring your coupon to KFC, they will give you a form to fill out to get a raincheck on the coupon. Then they will send you another coupon to use at a later date.

You can get more information and view the video from KFC's President HERE.

Join Homemade Gourmet for FREE - Today Only!

Homemade Gourmet is running a Mission in Motion Special Today Only where you can join the company for FREE! Normally, there is a $400 initial order requirement when you sign up but they are waiving that until June 30th if you sign up today! This is an awesome opportunity to start earning some extra income!

The Starter Kit is a $54 value and includes all the business supplies you need to get started, plus 7 mixes! You only have to pay $14.95 shipping and handling. (The 7 mixes alone are worth over $30!) There's no risk or obligation, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain!

Plus, if you place your first $400 order by May 31, 2009, you'll get an additional $60+ worth of retail products and supplies for FREE! The BBQ Bonanza Bundle and 3 Host CDs will be shipped with your initial order. You can easily reach your $400 order with just one party! I'll help you get started and show you how!

If you're interested, hurry and contact me today or visit my website: www.homemadegourmet.com/karrisa for more details!

Summer Fun

Now that summer is just around the corner and I will soon have two bored little girls staring at me all day waiting for me to do something cool to entertain them, I'm collecting info and ideas for some upcoming posts on free or cheap summer activities. This will be my first summer I don't have to work, so I'm wanting to make it very memorable for them, on a shoestring budget, of course! I'm looking for a variety of things from free admission or discounts on area attractions, free or cheap activities, frugal vacation ideas, kid-friendly crafts, recipes for kids to make in the kitchen, and inventive ways to pass the time. My goal is to gather enough ideas for a full post on each topic. I'm in Texas so I'm especially interested in ideas for that area, but will accept ideas for anywhere in the U.S.

If you have any tips, tricks, ideas or resources to contribute, please email them to me at karrisahg at gmail dot com.

I will be sure to give credit where credit is due in my posts, so if you have a blog you would like to link your idea to, include the link in the email!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Giveaway: $100 Home Depot Gift Card

I found another giveaway over at The Thrifty Mama, and in the process discovered a really awesome site! The Home Depot Garden Club is sponsoring a giveaway at The Thrifty Mama for a $100 Home Depot Gift Card!!

You can visit www.homedepotgardenclub.com to join The Home Depot Garden Club for FREE, and you will get exclusive coupons, tips and DIY advice on gardening, lawn care, landscaping and outdoor living projects.

And be sure to enter the giveaway for the $100 Home Depot Gift Card! Good luck!

Giveaway: Romano's Macaroni Grill

Abby at Me and My Boys is hosting a Romano's Macaroni Grill Gift Basket giveaway. Yummy! There will be 3 winners in this giveaway, which ends on 5/9/09. Go check it out!

My Very First Giveaway!

I'm so excited to be hosting my very first blog giveaway!!! The prize:

A $10 GameStop Gift Card!


This card may be used at any of the following stores, or at GameStop.com or EBgames.com: GameStop, EBgames, Babbage's, Electronics Boutique, EBX, Funcoland, PlanetX, and SoftwareEtc. To find a store near you, visit GameStop.com.

You can enter up to 5 times:

1) Leave a comment stating why you want to win this gift card!

2) Subscribe to my blog by email (see link in sidebar to the left)! Leave another comment stating that you have subscribed. If you are already a subscriber, leave a comment stating that.

3) Become a Follower of my blog! Leave another comment stating that you are a follower. If you are already a follower, leave a comment stating that.

4) Tweet about this giveaway on Twitter! Leave a comment with a link to your Tweet. Please link directly to the Tweet about this giveaway, not just your Twitter profile.

5) Blog about this giveaway on your own blog! Leave a comment below with a link to your blog post. Please link directly to the post about this giveaway, not your blog's main page.

This giveaway ends at 6pm CST on Sunday, May 10, 2009. The winner will be announced on the blog by 9pm CST on Sunday, May 10, 2009. The winner will have 48 hours to contact me to claim their prize. If for some reason the winner does not contact me within 48 hours, I will choose another winner.

Thanks and Good Luck!

Giveaway: $25 Walmart Gift Card

Clenece over at Good or Free Deals is giving away a $25 Walmart Gift Card on her blog! Hurry, contest ends on Friday, 5/8/09. So head on over there and check it out today!

HURRY! Free Gillette Fusion Razor

Today’s code is 4tRf6. Enter it where it says “Already have a code from a Yankees Game”.

During Yankees games, text GILLETTE to 56418 and you’ll receive a code redeemable on www.gillette.com/walk to receive a Gillette Fusion Razor. The offer is available to the first 1,000 each game. Click here to view the Yankees schedule.

Thanks to The Freebie Blogger for this deal!

Awesome Giveaway at YourCouponBuddy

YourCouponBuddy.com is sponsoring a giveaway for a free 10 pack of personalized note cards from Come Together Cards. These look really awesome! Check it out!!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

ConAgra Rebate

I found a flyer on my desk today, not sure where it came from, but it reminded me about the Con Agra "Summer of Savings" rebate promo going on now. The one I have started April 7th, but if you can't find that one, there was one in the 5/3 paper for purchases made 5/3-5/31. Receive a coupon booklet with over $34 in savings when you buy $25 in participating products, including Snack-Pack, Hunts, Rediwhip, Chef Boyardee, Egg Beaters, Slim Jim, Healthy Choice, Peter Pan, Manwich, Ro-Tel, Orville Redenbacher, Hebrew National, Crunch 'n Munch and Banquet.

Here's the kicker, since the form I have is good for purchases from 4/7 thru now, all the Healthy Choice entrees I bought for the Living Well promo will count toward this rebate! I'm mailing my form tomorrow!

Final Tom Thumb Living Well Trip

Tonight was a bit of a mess but we made it through. I wanted to take advantage of the last day of the Tom Thumb Living Well trip so I did 3 quick transactions. (Sorry, no time for pics when I got home.)

Transaction #1:
4 Ozarka Sprt Top 6pk - $1.99 ea (used $1/2 Catalina)
2 Bright Green Facial Tissue - $1.49 ea (used $1/1 from Bright Green Flyer)
4 Newman's Own Frozen Pizza - $4.99 ea (used $1/1 printable)
Used $15 in Catalinas from previous transactions

Total OOP: $8.74
Received: $10 OYNO from Living Well and $4 OYNO from Ozarka

Transaction #2:
3 Special K Blueberry - $2.79 ea (used $1/1 printable)
1 Smart Balance 50/50 Butter Blend (coupon expired - bummer)
2 Trop50 Orange Juice - $2.50 (no coupon - new family fave!)
4 Precious String Cheese - $3.49 ea (used $1/1 peelies)
Used $14 in Catalinas from Transaction #1

Total before coupons was only $29.83 but somehow the $10 OYNO still printed!!!
Total OOP: $8.67
Received: $10 OYNO from Living Well

Transaction #3 (just to use up $10 catalina):
1 18ct Lucerne Eggs - $1.99 (used 2-$0.50 peelies on pkg)
3 Ground Turkey Rolls - $2.49 ea
4 Candy Bars - Buy 2 @ $0.99 ea, Get 2 Free (as filler)

This is where it gets funny! Somehow transaction #3 came out to less than $10 so I grabbed a magazine as a filler. Turns out I grabbed the only magazine on the rack that cost $10.99 so my OOP came to $9.44! The line behind me was getting long and impatient so I just paid and went to the customer service desk to exchange for a $2.99 Woman's Day magazine and got back $8.66.

So... Total OOP: $0.78
Only after I got home did I realize that the reason my total on Transaction #3 was off was because cashier somehow only charged me for 2 Ground Turkey Rolls. Normally that would be a good thing but it messed things up for me tonight. LOL

Grand Total OOP: $18.19
Retail Value: $107.32
Savings: 83%

Got some great deals with the Living Well promo but I'm kinda glad it's over now! My brain is fried from calculating all the scenarios!

$20 Cash Card from Sierra Mist

Remember those BOGO Sierra Mist coupons I posted about a few days ago? Well get ready to use them! Sierra Mist has a new flavor called Sierra Mist Ruby Spalsh. There are certain 2-liters that have a folded "Special Offer" card stuck to them. Inside the "Special Offer" Card you will find a serial number. Type that serial number here and you will be led to do a 5 minute survey. That's all you have to do and within six (6) weeks you will get a $20 pre-paid cash card in your mailbox!!!

Thanks to Free Sample Freak for this deal!

Free 2 piece Grilled Chicken Meal at KFC

Hurry! Coupon is only available for printing until 9:59pm Central on 5/6/09. Go to www.unthinkfc.com for a coupon for a Free 2 pc Grilled Chicken Meal at KFC, includes 2 pc grilled chicken, 2 sides and a biscuit! Fine print says you are "limited to 4 online prints" of the coupon, so be sure to print it all 4 times! (If it won't let you print, try typing the web address directly into your browser rather than clicking on the link.)

Thanks, The Freebie Blogger!

Nobody's Perfect!

I've been blogging about all the great deals I've gotten lately, so I thought I'd blog about my trip to Wal-Mart that wasn't so thrifty yesterday. After taking a long break from couponing, I've really just started rebuilding my stockpile within the past month. So there were a few things I needed yesterday that weren't really on sale anywhere, so I just hit up my local Wal-Mart. (GV=Great Value brand)

10lb bag Sugar - $4.98
5lb bag Flour - $1.92
2lb bag Brown Sugar - $1.42
5 boxes Pop-Tarts - $1.92 ea (used $1/1 peelies and will send off for free movie ticket)
2lb bag GV Shredded Cheese -$6.38
16oz GV Sliced Cheese - $2.38
8oz block Marbled Jack Cheese - $1.68
16oz Oscar Mayer Ham - $2.98
16oz Oscar Mayer Turkey - $2.98
16oz pkg Lil Smokies - $3.78
Bar S Hot Dogs - $1.00
Bar S Bologna - $1.25
2 - 1lb Ground Turkey Rolls - $1.97 ea
8oz Daisy Sour Cream - $1.00
Disposable Camera - $5.24 (for daughter's field trip)
20oz Dr. Pepper - $1.38
2 pkgs Sunflower Seeds - $0.47 ea (the girls had the after-school munchies!)

Total OOP: $48.15

Granted it could have been much worse, but it still hurt after all the awesome deals I've been getting lately. Can't win 'em all I guess!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Menu Plan Monday


I'm going to start posting a weekly menu as part of Menu Plan Monday over at I'm an Organizing Junkie. I fully intended to post this earlier in the day but due to technical difficulties, I'm just now getting around to it. Better late than never though!


Monday - Taco Salad, Maria's Salsa, Spanish Rice


Tuesday - Bruschetta Chicken Bake, Corn, Salad


Wednesday - Grilled Steak, Au Gratin Potatoes, Italian Green Beans, Biscuits


Thursday - BBQ Chicken Leg Quarters, Velveeta Shells & Cheese, Broccoli, Texas Cornbread


Friday - Season 'N' Steam Tenderloin, Rice, Salad


Saturday - Lemon-Rosemary Whole Roasted Chicken, Chicken & Mushroom Rice, Corn, Texas Cornbread (leftover from Thursday)


Sunday - Mother's Day - I'm not responsible for dinner! ;)


You'll notice a few of the recipes are Homemade Gourmet recipes. For more information on Homemade Gourmet, visit my website.


For more menu planning resources, head on over to Menu Plan Monday. Have a great week!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

More Kellogg's Coupons

There are 8 more Kellogg's Cereal Coupons available here. Be sure to click your back button to print them twice for a total of 16 more coupons!

For Just One Week



"For Just One Week" is an idea from My Ice Cream Diary where you set mini-goals for one week. I can do anything for a week! I'm going to try to make this a regular Saturday posting so we'll see how it goes. (Yes, I know I'm late this week, but better late than never right?)

I'm going to start small this week with 2 goals:

1. Have dinner on the table every night by 7:00pm.

2. Make a menu plan and stick to it!

This really shouldn't be a problem for me since I'm not working now and I have no excuses, but it seems like we never get to eat before 9pm. One of the problems is that my fiance has a crazy schedule and I never know when he will get home. I try to wait for him so he can have a hot meal after working hard all day, but it's not right for the kids to be eating that late! And I absolutely refuse to make two separate meals! So I'm going to try to make things that reheat well if he's not home in time to join us. And notice I stressed the words "on the table"? That means we are going to sit down at the table and eat. Not in the living room glued to the TV, not in the office in front of my computer or wherever else we may land, but at the table, all together!

As for the menu, I will be posting my weekly menu every Monday as part of Menu Plan Monday. My problem is that even when I take time to carefully plan a menu, I rarely stick to it. And I have the buns and thighs to prove it! So my goal this week is to make that menu and stick to it!

What are your goals for the week? Leave a comment below. And if you want to join in or get more info about For Just One Week, visit My Ice Cream Diary!

Ways to Earn a Little Extra

As a WAHM, I am always looking for ways to bring in a little extra to help the family budget. I've rounded up a few of the highlights here for you. Rest assured, if I have included a program here, it is one that I personally have received money from before.

YouData.com
Get paid to read ads. It only takes a few minutes to sign in, click on a few ads and collect your money each week. And every Friday, YouData automatically transfers the balance you earned directly into your paypal account, no matter how big or small it may be. I love that you don't have to wait for any crazy minimum level before you get your money! Since mid-December I've earned about $15 through YouData. That may not seem like much but every little bit counts and I maximize my earnings by using it to order additional coupons from YourCouponBuddy.com to save even more on my weekly shopping trips! So I can easily turn a few dollars earned into an extra $30-40 savings at the grocery store! Click here to sign up with YouData and start earning money today!

Swagbucks.com
Swagbucks.com is a search engine that pays you to search the internet! Use Swagbucks.com every time you search and you can earn "Swagbucks" that are redeemable for all kinds of merchandise in the SwagStore. For as little as 45 Swagbucks, you can get a $5 Amazon.com gift certicate! Or save them up for something even bigger, like a $20 Target E-Gift Card for 220 Swagbucks. Click here to start searching today!

Ebates.com
I love shopping through Ebates.com. When you sign up with Ebates.com, you earn cash back on purchases from hundreds of stores. All you have to do is visit the Ebates.com website and click on the store you want to shop at. Most stores earn between 1-4% cash back plus you can still use any coupons or discounts you may have to save even more. I used Ebates.com for just a small fraction of my Christmas shopping and earned $21.62 in cash back! Checks are sent out quarterly as long as you have over $5.01 in your account. Sign up today!

SendEarnings.com
Get paid to read email! I spend a few minutes each day clicking on the emails from SendEarnings.com and earn $0.02 for every email I read. There are other opportunities to earn money by completing offers and such but those are completely optional. Once you have earned $30, you can request a check be sent to you for your earnings. Again, certainly no get rich quick scheme but an easy way to earn a little bit extra! Join today!

InboxDollars.com
This site is just like SendEarnings.com. Use them both to maximize your earnings. Click here to sign up!

So what are your favorite ways to earn a little extra money? Post them in the comments below!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Doing the Tom Thumb Happy Dance!


I'm so happy! I planned it all out, everything was in stock and my transactions went very smoothly! I was in and out in under 30 minutes even after a trip to customer service! I think I'm still on the money-saving high!!! I got everything in the above picture, plus 9 more Ozarkas that I was too lazy to unload from my trunk for $14.69. Check it out:

Transaction #1:
10 Ozarka Sprt-Top 6pks - $1.99 each (only 1 is pictured)
2 Healthy Choice Fresh Mixers - $2.50 each (used $1/1 printable)
2 Colgate Total - $2.99 each (used $1.50/1 printable from Aetna)
3 Pillsbury Crescent Rolls 4ct - $1.50 each (used $1/3 from 4/26 SS)
Used $15 in Catalinas from previous transactions

Total OOP: $14.52
Received: $10 OYNO from Living Well promo, $3 OYNO from Pillsbury and 5-$2 OYNO from the Ozarkas - That's a total of $23 back!

Transaction #2:
4 Electrasol Powerball Tabs - $3.99 (used $2.50/1 from 4/19 SS)
1 Bright Green Bleach - $1.49 (used $1/1 printable from Tom Thumb website)
1 Bright Green Tissue - $1.49 (used $1/1 from Bright Green Flyer in-store)
20 Yoplait Light Yogurt - $0.50 each (used 3 $0.40/6 from 4/19 SS)
1 pkg Pork Chops - $6.19 (used 30% off peelie on pkg)
3 Pillsbury Crescent Rolls 4ct - $1.50 each (used $1/3 from 4/26 SS)
Used $23 in Catalinas from 1st transaction above

Total OOP: $0.17 Woohoo!!!
Received: $10 OYNO from Living Well promo, $3 OYNO from Pillsbury and $2 OYNO from Yoplait Yogurts

Grand Total OOP: $14.69
Retail Value: $106.48
Savings: 86%

Plus, I still have $15 to spend on my next order! What shall I buy next? :)

(The trip to customer service was because a couple of my coupons stuck together on the first transaction so they weren't deducted. They actually charged me $20.02 and I had to go to customer service to get the other $4.50 back. Easy as pie!)
ETA: I know the pork chops weren't exactly the best deal, but I didn't have anything thawed out for dinner and $4.33 for some pork chops is still cheaper than a restaurant! ;)

Getting Organized

Laura over at I'm an Organizing Junkie has posted a great grocery list template on her site. It's not one of those annoying checklist ones that I despise! This one actually works for me and makes sense to me! Head on over to her site for the template and her explanation for why she designed it the way she did, as well as a few other handy templates and wonderful organizing templates.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Mom's Eat Free at Carino's Italian on Mother's Day

Carino's is one of my very favorite restaurants!!! When I was at my mom's house this afternoon, I saw a flyer on her coffee table that said Mom's eat free at Carino's on Mother's Day! It includes a soup or salad, one of a select variety of entree's, a mini-dessert and a free soft drink or tea. Fine print said limit 1 free meal per table with purchase of an additional entree. I didn't see anything on their website about this and though I'm a subscriber to their email newsletter, I haven't seen anything there yet either, so YMMV (your mileage may vary). I would recommend calling your local Carino's and asking whether they are participating before trekking out there on Mother's Day!

Even More Printable Coupons!

Go to Coupons.com or print coupons from the widget in my sidebar to get $1/1 Kellogg's Cereals. There's one for Frosted Flakes, Frosted Mini-Wheats, Corn Pops, Raisin Bran, Froot Loops, Apple Jacks, Special K, and Rice Krispies (8 separate coupons that you can print 2x each!!!)

Go here for $2/2 Purell Hand Sanitizer. That is IF you can find it anywhere! I went this afternoon to pick some up for my daughter and they were almost completely out of any kind of hand sanitizer at my Walgreen's! Getting scary out there!

Click here for $1/1 any one Pert Plus shampoo. Some varieties are included in the Tom Thumb Living Well promo.

Here's one for $1/5 Weight Watcher's Smart Ones Products.

And another one for $1/1 Evercare Roller or Refill. This is different than the one on Coupons.com, so you can print two of these too and have a total of 4 coupons!

Click here for $0.75/2 Lucky Leaf Pie Filling. I use these to make my Homemade Gourmet Texas Cobblers and Old Fashioned Apple Crisps! Yummy!!!

Save $0.55/1 Hillshire Farm Lunchmeat. Deli Select varieties are included in Living Well promo.

Save $0.50/1 Angel Soft Toilet Paper, 6 Double-Roll or larger

Save $0.50 on 2 Big Rolls or 1 2-pack or larger of Viva Paper Towels. This one would only let me print once. :( The 6 roll packages are included in the Living Well promo.

Save $0.55/1 Mann's Fresh Cut Vegetables. The BROCCOLI CARROTS & CELERY, CELERY CARROTS & GRAPE TOMATOES and CELERY CARROTS & SUGAR SNAP PEAS varieties are included in the Living Well promo.

And Save $1.50/1 Bertolli Frozen Meal. Certain varieties are included in the Living Well promo. Click here for a full list of all participating products in the Living Well promo, courtesy of Bob at Slickdeals.net.

A little tip for printing all these coupons: You can hit your back button and usually print two of each coupon. Most coupons only take up the very top portion of a sheet of paper with a large ad or recipe underneath. I typically print the first coupon and then insert the sheet of paper back into my printer so that the other coupon prints on the back of the paper on the opposite end of the first one. I recommend testing this with some unimportant document to determine exactly how to put it in your printer before trying it on a coupon, but it helps cut down on the amount of paper wasted.

Also, make sure your printer is on a lower quality setting. The coupons do not need to be printed at the same quality as your photos and such that you normally print. By setting your printer at a lower setting, you can save a great deal of ink!

Happy Printing!!

Don't Forget Your Unilever Rebate!

Many of the products from the Tom Thumb and Kroger sales over the past 2 weeks were included in the eligible products for the current Unilever rebate promo. Details are in the 4/5 Unilever coupon insert or on their website here.

Just buy any ham or turkey and $40 in Unilever products between 4/1/09 and 4/30/09 (can be purchased in multiple shopping trips), send in the rebate form and your receipts with the products and prices circled, and receive a check for the purchase price of your ham or turkey (up to $20).

Participating Unilever brands include the Bertolli, Skippy and Suave items in my recent transactions, as well as Axe products that are part of the current movie ticket promo. Click here for the full list of participating products.

Be sure and mail your rebate form and receipts by 5/7/09 to qualify for the rebate!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Kroger Deals - 4/29-5/5

I guess they needed to take a break after all the awesome deals over the last 2 weeks, because I'm not seeing much that jumps out at me in this weeks ad. There are some good produce deals though.

Supersweet Corn, 5/$1

Ripe Hass Avocados, 3/$1

Green Cabbage, 3lbs/$1

Mangos, 3/$1

Boneless Chicken Breast or Breast Tenders, B1G1 Free
Use $0.75/1 Pilgrim's Pride (1/25 SS) (expires 4/30/09)

Boneless Pork Loin Chops, B1G1 Free

Springdale Milk, $1.99
(but don't forget to use up any Catalinas you may still have from Albertson's for free milk from the Kellogg's cereal deal a couple weeks ago)

General Mills Cocoa Puffs, Trix or Cheerios $2
Use $1/3 (4/5 SS) = $1.67 each

Healthy Choice Frozen Dinners, $1.88 each
Use $1/2 (4/5 SS) = $1.38 each (not bad for a cheap lunch and pretty tasty too!)

Texas Honey Sweet Onions, $0.97/lb

Colgate Toothpaste, 2/$3
Use $0.75/1 (4/26 SS) = $0.75 each

Coca-Cola 2-liters, 5/$5

Crazy Combo Deal:
Buy Any 2 Kroger Beef or Chicken Seasoned Fajitas, 32oz pkg
Get Free:
Fresh Express Shredded Lettuce, 8oz bag
Country Fresh Pico de Gallo, 8-10oz
Dos Padres Tortilla Chips, 14oz
Kroger Sour Cream, 12-16oz

Free Movie Tickets, Number 2

Kellogg's has a FUN new promotion available! Look for Star Trek Official Movie Pass vouchers on specially-marked packages of Kellogg's Pop-Tarts Toaster Pastries - available on 8 ct, 12 ct, and 16 ct varieties!

1) Collect movie pass vouchers from specially marked Kellogg's Pop-Tarts
2) Mail 5 vouchers along with order form found inside the box
3) Get a movie pass (up to a $12 value) good for one free admission to Star Trek- or any other movie of choice! You can also get up to 5 FREE movie passes per household!

**Offer good until 6/30/10 or while supplies last!

Rumor has it there are $1/1 peelies out there somewhere, though I haven't seen them. But there were coupons for $1/2 in the 4/5 Red Plum to help sweeten the deal!

My kids are going to love this deal!

(Thanks, It's Hip to Save!)

Free Movie Tickets, Number 1

The FREE Axe movie ticket promotion is available again at Walgreens!
This promotion will run thru 5/30!

Details:
Purchase three Axe products: shampoo, deodorant and/or body wash
Receive one FREE movie ticket code (Up to a $12 Value)

Or

Purchase five Axe productsReceive two FREE movie ticket codes (up to a $24 value)

**These codes will print out of the Catalina machine after paying for your transaction.

Plus, there was a coupon for $1/1 Axe Shower Gel or Detailer Shower Tool in the 4/5 Unilever coupon insert. And according to iheartwags.com, Axe products will be 25% off the week of May 10-16.

The best part--Select Axe products are on clearance! Axe Bullet (4 pk) sprays are reported to be on clearance for $1.39 and are producing the FREE movie ticket Catalina!

Deal Scenario:
Buy 5 Axe Bullets $1.39 each=$6.95
Pay $6.95 + Tax
Get back 2 FREE Movie Tickets ($24 value)!

This is a great deal if your planning to go to the movies anyway!
When you get home just go to http://www.emoviecash.com/ and print your certificates for the tickets. You can also go here to check theatre locations first and make sure there are some in your area.

(Thanks, It's Hip to Save!)

More Great Printable Coupons!

Go here and enter your email address to receive a coupon for a FREE CroisSONIC Breakfast Sandwich with the purchase of a large drink. Although Sonic serves breakfast all day, the coupon specifically states "Not valid during Happy Hour" when the drinks are half price. (They must've read my mind! LOL) But still a great deal!

Save $1.50/2 Velveeta Shells & Cheese! Too bad the Tom Thumb Catalina deal on these ended this weekend. But they are still a part of the Living Well deal. My Tom Thumb has them on sale 2/$4 this week so that makes them only $1.25 each after coupon! And while you're there, make sure to click on the link at the bottom of the page to donate a box to Feeding America for FREE! ***ETA: These are 2/$3 at Wal-Mart thru 5/2/09, making them $0.75 each after coupon!

Save $1 on Wendy's New Frosty flavors! Click here for a coupon for $1/1 for the new Coffee Toffee Twisted Frosty or the Frosty-cino Shake. Don't forget to hit your back button to print a total of 2 coupons so you can try one of each new flavor! :)

Click here to print a coupon for $1.25/1 Morningstar Farms Italian Sausage or Hickory BBQ Riblets

Printables at Coupons.com

There are some great coupons on Coupons.com right now. I've listed a few of the highlights below. You can also print coupons directly from the sidebar on my blog. Just click "Scroll Coupons" to find the one you want and then click the "Quick Print" button!

Save $2/1 California Pizza Kitchen. There's actually 3 different coupons and, as always, you can print each coupon twice so you can get 6 of these coupons! These are included in the Tom Thumb Living Well Promo.

BOGO Sierra Mist. Buy one 2-liter Sierra Mist, get one 2-liter Sierra Mist Ruby Splash free!
Save $.75/1 Fresh Express Complete Salad Kit.
Save $1/2 Fresh Express Salad Blends. ($0.98 each at Wal-Mart thru 5/2/09)
Save $1/1 Evercare Roller or Refill. Use this coupon to get them free at Wal-Mart!
Save $1.50/2 Hidden Valley Ranch Salad Dressing
Save $1.50/2 Kashi Go Lean Cereal (part of Tom Thumb Living Well promo)
Save $1.50/2 Kashi TLC Snack Bars (part of Tom Thumb Living Well promo)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Mastering The Tom Thumb Living Well Promo



I was feeling brave this morning, so I tried to give the Tom Thumb promo another try after some very careful planning. However, my planning wasn't too careful because I realized only too late that a couple of the Catalina deals I was counting on had already ended. Don't forget, you can get all the details of the Living Well Promo by clicking here.

Transaction #1:
5 Velveeta Shells & Cheese $2 ea
2 Classico Sun-Dried Tomato Alfredo Sauce $2 ea (used $1/1 Wine Tag)
2 Safeway Pasta (Free with purchase of 2 Classico Sauces)
2 Ozarka Sprt Top 6pk $1.99 ea (used $1/2 Catalina)
1 Pringles Stix $1.79 ea (used $.50/1 from 3/15 or 4/5 PG)
1 Bright Green Bleach $1.49 (used $1/1 from Bright Green Flyer in store)
3 Pillsbury Crescent Rolls 4ct $1.29 ea (used $1/3 from 4/26 SS)
1 Colgate Toothpaste $2.99 (used $1.50/1 printable from Aetna)
2 Oscar Mayer Deli Creations $3 ea (used Free item coupon & $1.50/1 from Kraft mailer)
Used $19 in Catalinas from last week's transactions

Total OOP: $2.97
Received: $10 OYNO from Living Well Promo, $3 OYNO from Pillsbury, $2 OYNO from Ozarka and $1/2 coupon for Ozarka

Transaction #2:
5 Velveeta Shells & Cheese $2 ea
2 Ozarka Sprt Top 6pk $1.99 ea (used $1/2 Catalina)
6 Hershey Special Dark $1.79 ea
1 Pringles Stix $1.79 ea (used $.50/1 from 3/15 or 4/5 PG)
1 McCormick Grillmates $0.99 (used $.25/1 from 1/18 RP)
2 Yoplait Yo Plus 4pk $2.50 ea (used $1.50/1 printable)
3 Pillsbury Crescent Rolls 4ct $1.29 ea (used $1/3 from 4/26 SS)
1 pkg of Beef Kabobs w/Veggies $3.02 (used 50% off peelie on pkg making it $1.01 OOP!)
Used $15 in Catalinas from Transaction #1

Total OOP: $16.42
Received: $10 OYNO from Living Well Promo, $3 OYNO from Pillsbury, $2 OYNO from Ozarka and $1/2 coupon for Ozarka

Transaction #3:
3 Kraft Salad Dressing $2.49 (used $1.50/1 from 3/29 SS)
2 Ozarka Sprt Top 6pk $1.99 ea (used $1/2 Catalina)
1 Pringles Stix $1.79 ea (used $.50/1 from 3/15 or 4/5 PG)
2 Sun Chips $3 ea (used $1/2 printable)
2 Bertolli Pasta Pouch $2 ea (used $.60/1 from 4/5 UN)
1 Skippy Peanut Butter $2.50 (used $.40/1 from 4/5 UN)
1 McCormick Grillmates $0.99
1 Capri Sun Sunrise $1.99 (used $1/1 from 4/19 SS)
3 Pillsbury Crescent Rolls 4ct $1.29 ea (used $1/1 from 4/26 SS)
1 18ct Lucerne Eggs $1.99 (used 2 $.75/1 peelies on carton making them $0.49 OOP!)
1 Colgate Toothpaste $2.99 (used $1.50/1 printable from Aetna)
1 pkg of Beef Kabobs w/Veggies $3.38 (used 50% off peelie on pkg making it $1.19 OOP!)
Used $15 in Catalinas from Transaction #2

Total OOP: $9.66
Received: $10 OYNO from Living Well Promo, $3 OYNO from Pillsbury, $2 OYNO from Ozarka and $1/2 coupon for Ozarka

Transaction #4:
1 Kraft Salad Dressing $2.49 (used $1.50/1 from 3/29 SS)
2 Ozarka Sprt Top 6pk $1.99 ea (used $1/2 Catalina)
1 Bertolli Pasta Pouch $2 ea (used $.60/1 from 4/5 UN)
1 Pringles Stix $1.79 ea (used $.50/1 from 3/15 or 4/5 PG)
1 Skippy Peanut Butter $2.50 (used $.40/1 from 4/5 UN)
1 Bright Green Bleach $1.49 (used $1/1 from Bright Green Flyer in store)
3 Pillsbury Crescent Rolls 4ct $1.29 ea (used $1/1 from 4/26 SS)
5 Healthy Choice Cafe Steamers $1.99 ea WYB 5 (used $1/2 from 4/5 SS)
1 Colgate Toothpaste $2.99 (used $1.50/1 printable from Aetna)
Donated $1 to People with Disabilities
Used $15 in Catalinas from Transaction #3

Total OOP: $6.51
Received: $10 OYNO from Living Well Promo, $3 OYNO from Pillsbury, $2 OYNO from Ozarka and $1/2 coupon for Ozarka

Grand Total OOP: $35.08
Retail Value: $203.89
Savings: 83%

Plus, I still have $15 in Catalinas to spend on my next order!

I'm Loving Kroger This Week!


4 Kraft Salad Dressings $2.19 ea (used $1.50/1 from 3/29 SS)
6 Mahatma Rice $1.09 ea (used $.50/1 from 4/26 RP)
6 Birds Eye Steamfresh Veggies $0.99 ea (FREE after $.35/1 from 3/29 SS)
6 Quaker Quakes $0.99 ea (FREE after $1/1 from 3/29 RP)
6 Suave Deodorant $0.99 ea (FREE after $.50/1 from 3/29 RP)
6 Softsoap $0.99 ea (FREE after $.35/1 from 4/26 SS)
6 Suave Shampoo/Conditioner $0.99 ea (used $.50/1 from 3/29 RP)
6 Pillsbury Brownie Mix $0.99 ea (FREE after $.35/1 from 3/29 RP)
4 On Cor Frozen Entrees $1.99 ea (used $.30/1 from 3/1 RP)
1 Popsicle 12ct $1.00

Total OOP: $11.80
Retail Value: $88.66
Savings: 87%

Yummy Pasta Dinner!


I made this a couple of weeks ago but just haven't gotten around to posting it. It was oh-so-yummy!!! I kinda made it up as I went along, but I basically followed the recipe found here, but I substituted Sweet Italian Turkey Sausage for the chicken and I added a little Roasted Red Bell Pepper just because I had some I wanted to use up. We loved it so much, we ate the leftovers for dinner later that week!

And I recently tried this recipe for Sweet Bacon-Wrapped Venison Tenderloin and it was amazing!!! I used Applewood Smoked Bacon for a little extra flavor!

Free Sample of UnderJams Nightwear

P&G is giving away free samples of their UnderJams Nightwear. Click here and choose Boys or Girls to get yours!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Kroger Trip 4/23/09



I apologize for the crappy picture! And some items are not pictured because it was a long trip between Kroger and Tom Thumb and I needed to get everything in the fridge/freezer ASAP.

4 Grande Tortilla Chips - $2 ea (used $1/1 from 4/19 SS)
2 NY Strip Steaks - marked down to $5.15 each (used $2 off peelies from Grande Tortilla Chips)
6 Fast Fixin Chicken - $0.99 ea (used $.30/1 printable)
2 Birds Eye Steamfresh Veggies (used $.35/1 from 3/29 SS)
1 Lloyds BBQ - $6.99
1 Kroger Hamburger Buns - FREE with Lloyds BBQ
1 Kroger BBQ Chips - FREE with Lloyds BBQ
1 Dole Cole Slaw - FREE with Lloyds BBQ
1 Big K Root Beer - FREE with Lloyds BBQ
1 Earth Sound Reusable Bag - FREE with Lloyds BBQ
2 Whole Fryer Chickens - $.69/lb

Not So Great Tom Thumb Trip

This was my first attempt at doing the Tom Thumb Living Well promo. I didn't plan things out very well at all and got up to the register with my transactions not grouped together and my coupons not sorted properly. I know, major violation of the Couponer Code of Ethics! But it was just a bad morning for me. To top it off, I had a very UN-friendly cashier! I spent way more out of pocket than I should have, but I still got to stock up on a lot of stuff we needed. So here goes...

I did three separate transactions to maximize my savings and roll my $10 catalinas. You can read more about the Living Well promo and other coupon matchups here.


Transaction #1:
4 Fiber One Toaster Pastries - $2 each (used $.50/1 from 4/19 ss)
2 Kashi Go Lean Crunch - $3 each (used $1.50/2 printable)
2 Sun Chips - $3 each (used $1/2 printable)
1 Triscuit Crackers - $3.49
2 Capri Sun Sunrise - $1.99 each (used $1/1 from 4/19 SS)
2 Smart Balance Spreads - $2.50 each (used $1/2 from 4/5 SS)
1 Smart Balance Butter Blends Sticks - $2.50 (used free item coupon from 4/5 SS)
Used $10 OYNO from my mom's purchase! (Thank You Mommy!!!)

Total OOP: $14.57
Received $10 OYNO from Living Well promo

Transaction #2:
2 Kashi Go Lean Crunch - $3 each (used $1.50/2 printable)
2 Kraft Salad Dressing - $2.49 each (used $1.50/1 from 3/29 SS)
5 Bertolli Premium Pasta Sauces - $2 each (used $1/1 from 4/5 SS)
2 Kellogg Special K Cereal Bars - $2.59 each
1 Special K Crackers - $3.19 (used $1/1 printable)
2 Skippy Peanut Butter - $2.50 each (used $.40/1 from 3/29 or 4/5 SS)
1 Pam Cooking Spray - $3.49 (used $.55/1 from 3/29 SS)
2 Dreamfield Pasta - $2 each (used $1/1 printable)
Used $10 OYNO from Transaction #1

Total OOP: $17.59
Received: $10 OYNO from Living Well promo

Transaction #3: (This is where it gets ugly! I got frustrated with the cashier and just threw everything else up on the register in one final transaction!)
5 Velveeta Shells & Cheese - $2 each
1 Safeway Refreshe Water (was supposed to be on Trans #2 to be free w/purchase of 3 Special K products, but cashier was nice enough to apply that discount on this transaction)
2 Smart Balance Oil - $3 each (used $1/1 from 4/5 RP)
2 Ozarka Sprt Top 6pk - $1.99 each
6 Hershey's Special Dark Bars - $1.79 each, plus $5 WYB $10 (used $1/1 from 4/19 SS)
4 Classico Pasta Sauce - $2 each (used $1/2 printable)
4 Safeway Pasta - 2 FREE with purchase 2 Classico Pasta Sauces
2 French's Honey Dijon Mustard - $2.64 each (used $1/1 from 3/29 SS)
3 Coca-Cola 2-liters - $1.33 each WYB 3
2 McCormick Grill Mates Seasoning (used $1/1 printable)
4 Chef Boyardee Ravioli - $1 each
2 Mission Tortillas - $2.50 each (used $1/1 printable)
3 Pillsbury Crescent Rolls 4ct - $1.29 each (used $.25/1 from 2/8 GM and $.40/2 from 4/5 SS)
2 Trop50 Orange Juice - $2.50 each (used $1/1 printable)
5 Healthy Choice Natural Frozen Dinners - $1.99 each WYB 5 (used $1/2 printable)
2 Jenny O Ground Turkey - $3.50 each
2 Pillsbury Chicken Thighs - $3.13-3.17 each
2 Fresh Express Salads - $1 each
1 Buitoni Pasta - $2.50 (used $1/1 Wine Tag)
1 Buitoni Pasta Sauce (used $1/1 Wine Tag)
Used $10 OYNO from Transaction #2
Used $5 off $50 purchase from Entertainment Passbook

Total OOP: $60.12
Received: $10 OYNO from Living Well Promo, $1 OYNO from McCormick, $2 OYNO from Ozarka, $3 OYNO from Pillsbury, $4 OYNO from Kraft, $1/2 Ozarka Coupon

Grand Total for the day: $92.28 OOP OUCH!!!
Retail Value: $253.38
Savings: 64%

The good news is, I still have $19 to use on my next purchase!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Kroger Trip - 4/21/09


I did two transactions to get these all in. I was absolutely thrilled with my totals.

6 Quaker Quakes (FREE after $1/1 from 3/29 RP)
6 Suave Deodorants (FREE after .50/1 from 3/29 RP)
4 Grill Mates Seasoning Blends (FREE after $1/1 from 3/15 RP)
4 Angel Soft 4pk (FREE after .50/1 from 4/19 RP)
5 Scott Mega Rolls (FREE after $1/1 from 3/29 SS)
6 Pillsbury Brownie Mixes (FREE after .35/1 from 3/29 RP)
4 Lawry's Marinades (used $1/2 from 4/5 RP)
2 Ziploc Storage Containers (used $1.50/2)
2 Hillshire Farms Smoked Sausage (used $1/2 peelie)
1 box Kroger Farfalle Pasta

Total OOP: $10.43
Saved 88%

I think that's a personal best! :)

Albertsons Trip - 4/21/09


I wasn't as happy with this trip as I thought I would be, but it was still pretty good. I got:

Doritos Singles 6ct - Free with Monopoly Instant Win Coupon
2 Libby's Canned Vegetables (used .50/2 printable found here)
6 cans Dole Pineapple (used .55/2 from 3/29 SS)
4 cans Pillsbury Grands 5ct (used .50/2 printable found here)
Albertson's Milk - Free with Catalina from Kellogg cereal deal
6 Suave Shampoos/Conditioners (used .50/1 from 3/29 RP)
4 Limes
1 Lemon
Fresh Express Salad
4 Blueberry Bagels (99cents on markdown Bakery rack)

Total OOP: 14.27
Saved 65%

While I was there they were handing out a check to a lady who had won $5,000 in the Monopoly game! It was very exciting!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Fashion on a Budget

Jen over at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam has started a Frugal Fashionista series all about finding designer outfits for under $15. I'm loving this series and can't wait for each new article to come out! I'm such a bargain hunter that I really get excited when I score finds like this and I'm working on making it more of a regular occurrence. We're talking entire outfits, shirts, pants, shoes, AND accessories for under $15. And she never looks like she shops at Good Will or thrift stores! I think that's the hardest part. Anybody can go into Good Will and pick up a shirt for a couple dollars, but it takes a little more work to hunt down the really good pieces.

There are 3 posts in this series so far, check them out here:

Designer Wardrobe on a Frugal Budget
Building a Core Wardrobe - Frugally
Frugal Fashionista - Designer Outfits

And be sure to check back each Friday for a new post in this series!