Monday, June 27, 2011

Walgreens Deals 6/26 - 7/2

There's still plenty of time to snatch up the great deals at Walgreens this week!  Here are a few of my favorites...


Get $2 RR wyb (4) Pringles @ $1.50 ea
- $1/2 mc (RP 5/22 or P&G $110 booklet)
*makes them $0.50 ea!

Get $2 RR wyb select Reach floss or toothbrushes at $2.99 ea
- $1 mc (SS 4/17)
*makes it FREE!

Deerfield Farms baking soda 16oz @ $0.50 w/ in ad coupon
- $0.50/2 Walgreens store coupon (from July coupon book)
*makes it $0.25 ea!

You can see all of the Walgreens deals for this week here.

CVS Deals 6/26 - 7/2

This isn't the best week ever at CVS, but there are still a few good deals worth grabbing.  Here are my favorites...


Get $6.79 ECB WYB RepHresh Brilliant pH Tampons, 18 ct. @ $6.79 (Limit 1)
-$1 mc (printable)
*makes it FREE + profit

Get $2 ECB WYB (2) Pantene Pro-V Shampoo, Conditioner, or Styler, 5.7-12.6 oz @ $3.48 ea (Limit 1) 
-$3/2 mc (SS 6/19)
* makes it 98¢ ea.



Schick Hydro 3 or Hydro 5 Cartridges, 4 ct., or Razor, B1G1 starting at $8.99
-$4 mc (SS 6/12)
*use (2) $4 off, makes it 99¢ for both





See the full list of CVS deals here.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Freezer Cooking Experiment (Part 2)

The second day of my freezer cooking experiment was just as successful as day one and day two!  By Friday morning, I had made everything on my list, plus the mini corndog muffins, which I had forgotten about!  Here's what we now have in our freezer waiting for us to eat:

10 breakfast burritos (well, at least 2 are gone now!)  :)
1/2 loaf of chocolate chip banana bread
20 mini cinnamon swirls
8 blueberry muffins
12 mini corndog muffins
40 oatmeal chocolate chip cookie dough balls
1/2 french toast casserole
30 meatballs
18 brownies (from a mix that was going to expire!)

We better not eat it all in one day or I'll be buying us all new clothes!  :)

On Thursday of this week, I took about an hour to make 30 meatballs and half of a French Toast Casserole.  I've decided that, overall, I really enjoy cooking this way.  It feels great to have a freezer stocked full of things I could pull out and fix any day that I need to.  Plus, a lot of what I made were things we can use for breakfast, which was exciting to me because I feel like we eat the same things for breakfast over and over again!

First I made the French Toast Casserole which has become one of my new favorite dishes!  It's easy to put together and is DELICIOUS!  The original recipe fills up a 9x13 in baking dish, but I just made half of one and it turned out just fine.  (We can't eat a whole one at a time!)  Here's the recipe:

Overnight French Toast Casserole

Ingredients:
1/2 cup butter
12 slices bread (any kind will work, really)
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon or baking spice
1 tsp vanilla extract
5 eggs (I used 3 eggs to make half of a casserole)
 1 1/2 cup milk

Directions:
1.  Melt butter and pour in a 9x13in pan.
2.  Mix together brown sugar & cinnamon (or baking spice)
3.  Wisk eggs, milk, & vanilla together
4.  Layer bottom of pan with half the bread
5.  Sprinkle half brown sugar mix over the bread
6.  Layer second half of bread
7.  Pour egg mixture over all then sprinkle remaining brown sugar
8.  Cover & refrigerate overnight
9.  In the morning, cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 30 min.
10.  Uncover and bake 15 more minutes (should be browned & set)
(I left mine in fridge overnight, baked it the next day, let it cool and put it in the freezer.  I will let it thaw overnight and reheat in the oven when we're ready to eat it)

(recipe taken from www.moneysavingmom.com)

Next were the meatballs.  I really like making these because they are super easy and the way the recipe is written, you always have a second batch left over to use later!  Here it is...

 Meatballs


Ingredients:
2 lb ground beef
1 pkg (6 oz) stuffing mix for chicken
1 1/2 cups water
2 eggs

Directions:
1.  Heat over to 400 degrees.  line 2 pans with foil, spray with cooking spray.  Mix all ingredients together until blended.  Shape into 32 (1 1/2 in.) balls, using 1/4 cup mix for each.
2.  Place 16 meatballs on each pan.  Bake 16 to 18 minutes or until done (160 degrees F).

To freeze:
Allow meatballs to cool, then loosely pack cooled meatballs in freezer bags.  Lay bags flat in the freezer so meatballs freeze individually.  Store up to 3 months.  Thaw in refrigerator several hours before using as desired.

Two great sauces to use with these are...

Tomato-Basil Cream Sauce:
Mix 1 jar spaghetti sauce, 2 oz cubed cream cheese and 2 tbsp chopped basil in large skillet.  Cook on medium-low heat 3 min. or until heated through, stirring occasionally.  Add 16 hot meatballs, stirring evenly to coat. 

OR

Creamy Brown Gravy:
Mix 1 jar (12 oz) beef gravy, 1/2 cup sour cream and 2 tbsp chopped parsley in a large skillet.  Cook on medium-low heat 3 min. or until heated through.  Add hot meatballs, stirring evenly to coat.

(we serve this over spaghetti or egg noodles)

(recipe taken from Kraft Food & Family Magazine)

So, I think I'll try this freezer cooking thing more often!  When I come across freezer-friendly recipes, I'll share them.  I'd love for you to do the same!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Logans Roadhouse: B1G1 FREE Coupon!

Head on over to the Logan's Roadhouse facebook page to print a buy one get one free coupon.  First "like" them and then click on the "buy one get one free tab." 

Freezer Cooking A Success! (Part 1)

In this post, I talked about how I wanted to try to save some time in the kitchen by doing some freezer cooking and preparing things ahead of time for us to use at a later date.  I had a plan to make the following:

10 Breakfast Burritos
Apple Chips
20 Mini Cinnamon Swirls
40 Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
12 Blueberry Muffins
1 French Toast Casserole (divided into 2 pans)
32 meatballs

Over the last two days, I have VERY busy in the kitchen, but I would have to say that this freezer cooking experiment was a success!  Here's what I accomplished...

On Tuesday, I made 10 Breakfast Burritos that turned out to be very yummy!  They are all wrapped up in the freezer and ready to be popped into the microwave for a quick breakfast!

Yesterday, after my morning shopping trips, while the girls were napping I worked on the Mini Cinnamon Swirls, Blueberry Muffins, and also made some Corndog Muffins (forgot to put those in the list!)  It took me about an hour and 45 minutes to make all three things.  Not too bad!

The Mini Cinnamon Swirls turned out nicely!  I basically made them to have something quick for the girls to eat for breakfast.  There were really easy to make!  Here's the recipe:

Mini Cinnamon Swirls

Ingredients:
1 8oz can refrigerated reduced-fat crescent dinner roll dough
4 teaspoons bottled cinnamon sugar
1/4 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons 1% low fat milk

Directions:
1.  Preheat oven to 375.
2.  Unroll crescent dough, and cut dough cross-wise with a knife, forming 2 squre portions.  Press perferations together with fingers.  Sprinkle each portion with 2 teaspoons cinnamon sugar. 



3.  Roll up 1 portion of dough, and press firmly to eliminate air pockets; pinch seam to seal.  Cut roll into 10 slices. 
4.Place slices, cut sides down, on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray.  Repeat with remaining dough portions.
5.  Bake at 375 degrees for 10 - 12 minutes or until rolls are golden.
6.  Allow to cool and place in a freezer bag to freeze until ready to use.



To Serve:
1.  Defrost cinnamon swirls in the microwave.
2.  Combine powdered sugar and milk, stirring with a whisk until smooth.  Drizzle over warm rolls with a small wisk.

(recipe taken from Weight Watchers 5 Ingredient 15 Minute Cookbook, Feb. 2007 edition)


I was really excited to try the Mini Corndog Muffins because I thought my girls would like them!  I thought they were delicious and ended up eating at least 4 of them myself!  :)  I gave some to the girls for dinner, so only 12 of them actually made it into the freezer.  Unfortunately, my girls were less excited about them than I was and ended up picking the hotdog out of the muffin and leaving the cornbread behind.  **SIGH**  (Does anyone stress over meal time like I do because of picky eaters?!?!)  Anyway - I think most NORMAL children would LOVE these!!!

Mini Corndog Muffins

Ingredients:
1 box Jiffy cornbread mix
(you will also need 1 egg and however much milk it calls for on the Jiffy box - I threw the box aways and now I can't remember!!!)
5 hotdogs


Directions:
1.  Preheat oven according to directions on box.  Spray 24 mini muffin cups with cooking spray.
2.  Follow directions on box to create cornbread mix.  Fill each muffin cup halfway with mix.
3.  Cut each hotdog into 5 pieces.  Place one piece of hotdog into each mix-filled muffin cup.



4.  Bake muffins according to directions on package.
5.  Place uneaten :) muffins in a freezer bag & freeze.

To Serve:
Heat desired number of muffins in microwave or toaster overn before serving.

(recipe adapted from one found on www.moneysavingmom.com)


Then, my least successful recipe of the day - the blueberry muffins.  I had a recipe for Blueberry Struessel muffins.  They turned out okay I guess, but it called for a topping of butter & brown sugar which made the muffins sticky.  Plus, I used fresh blueberries which made a mess once they were cooked.  I think I will look for a new muffin recipe, but this is how they turned out (along with the cinnamon rolls and corndog muffins)...




Last, but not least, after the girls went to bed Wednesday night, I worked on the Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies.  These turned out to be DELICIOUS and actually had decently healthy ingredients compared to some other cookie recipes I've made in the past.  My daughter tested one out tonight (the one who didn't like the corndog muffin!) and LOVED it!  :)



Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

Ingredients:
1 cup shortening or butter (softened) (I used butter)
1/3 cup peanut butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cup flour (recipe suggest whole wheat)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups oats (rolled or quick oats)
1 12-oz package of chocolate chips

Directions:
1.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2.  Cream together first 6 ingredients.
3.  Add flour, baking soda and oats.  Mix well.
4.  Stir in chocolate chips.
5.  Roll into 1 - 1 1/2 inch balls & place on greased cookie sheets.
6.  Bake for 10 minutes or until done.
(Makes approximately 40 cookies)

To Freeze:
Roll dough into balls and place on a cookie sheet.  Freezer for 1 - 2 hours. 



Place frozen cookie dough balls into a plastic freezer bag and seal tightly.  When ready to bake, pull out the desired amount of balls and place on a greased cookie sheet for 30 - 45 minutes to thaw.  Bake at 375 degrees for 10 minutes or until done.

(recipe taken from www.moneysavingmom.com)



So, all in all, I think Wednesday was a successful day in the kitchen!!!

Today, I made the meatballs and 1/2 of a french toast casserole.  I will give you the details on those recipes tomorrow!  The only thing I haven't made yet are the apple chips, and I'm hoping to make those in the morning.  We'll see how they turn out!


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Thrifty Wednesday! :) (with Unadvertised Kroger Deals!)

Well, I decided to do my shopping a little early this week so I could work on my freezer cooking tomorrow and Friday.  I went to CVS, Kroger, and Food Lion this morning!

At CVS, all I bought was 1 box of Stove Top Stuffing mix.  I need it for the meatballs I want to make.  It was regularly priced at $1.99 and I had a CVS coupon for $1 off making it $0.99.  My total after tax was $1.01

Next it was on to Kroger.  I had several things that weren't on sale on my list today because of my freezer cooking plans.  There is still a mega sale going on, but I didn't really want anything from it except for Huggies wipes which they STILL didn't have in stock.  (If this happens to you, make sure you ask for a rain check.  It will be written for the price the item WOULD have been had you bought it as part of the Mega Sale - plus, it has no limit on the number of items you can get at that price!  Kroger rain checks expire within 30 days of the time they are written.)  Most of what I bought was dairy and produce.  I did end up getting FREE organge juice because it rang up incorrectly!!

Total value of 48 items: $114.62
Total spent: $60.18
Total saved: $54.44 or 47%!

*****DEAL HIGHLIGHTS*****

Check out these deals you may be able to find in your store!


Traditional Medicinals Organic Echinaccea Plus Tea on clearance for $1
-used the $1 mc from the March issue of All You magazine (there is also one in the July issue)*made it FREE!



Goldfish Grahams $1
-found packages with $0.75 coupons attached!
*made them $0.25!
(There are also $0.55 and $0.35 Goldfish coupons here.)



6 count boxes of Sunmaid raisins $1 *GREAT PRICE!*
(These are at least twice as big as the packages I've gotten recently at Dollar Tree!  I always keep a box of these in the diaper bag for my daughter!)



Marcal Small Steps napkins, 250 ct. on sale for $2.49
-$1 mc from the 5/22 & 6/19 RP inserts.
*makes them $1.49 - a good price for this size package of napkins!

*****************************************************************************

After Kroger I ran in Food Lion for sausage and cereal.  Once I was inside I realized I left the cereal coupons at home!  (Yes - even I forget to take a coupon with me to the store sometimes!!)  I ended up buying 2 packages of Butterball turkey sausage, 1 head of lettuce and 1 package of blueberries for the blueberry muffins I want to make for my freezer cooking experiment!  I'll have to go back for the cereal!  :)

Total value of 4 items: $12.04
Total spent: $6.17
Total saved: $5.87 or 49%


Totals for the day:

Total value of all items: $128.67
Total spent: $67.36
Total saved: $61.31 or 48%

Have you gone shopping this week?  How did you do?

Freezer Cooking: My Ambitious Plan! **NOW WITH PICTURES!** :)

I'm sure by now you know that I am definitely into saving money!  But, I am also very interested in saving time as well!!!  Recently, I've been reading about freezer cooking on several blogs I follow and have decided I need to try it out! 

In a nutshell, "freezer cooking" is taking one afternoon and making several meals that can be frozen for future use.  Typcially you would find a recipe that can be doubled or tripled and save them in the freezer.  This is so nice when it comes to dinner time and you don't have to cook the main dish because it's already done!

Since my girls are going to Vacation Bible School every morning this week, I figured this would be a great time for me to try out my freezer cooking skills!  Here are the things I'm planning to make between now and Friday:

10 Breakfast Burritos (see recipe below)
Apple Chips
20 Mini Cinnamon Swirls
40 Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
12 Blueberry Muffins
1 French Toast Casserole (divided into 2 pans)
32 meatballs

This is a very ambitious list, so we'll see how it goes!  (Notice I'm not trying to do it all in one day!)  :) 

While the girls were napping yesterday, I made the Breakfast Burritos.  I thought these would be good for a quick breakfast -especially for my husband who is often on the go in the mornings.  This was a simple recipe.  It's also nice because you can pretty much use whatever ingredients you have on hand.  I happened to have some bell pepper and deli ham that needed to be used up.  Also, I only had 10 tortillas so I halved the recipe and it worked out great!  I can't wait to try them out - and to see if my husband likes them!  Here's the recipe if you want to try it:

UPDATE:  I tried one of these today and it was very tasty!  If you try it, let me know how you like it!


Breakfast Burritos

Ingredients:
1/4 cup butter
1/3 cup chopped green peppers
18 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 cup chopped ham
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
20 flour tortillas

Directions: 

1.  Saute onion & green pepper in butter.


2.  Beat eggs & milk together.  Mix in ham, salt & pepper.  Pour into skillet with veggies and cook, stirring occasionally, until eggs are set.


3.  Mix in cheese and let melt.


4.  Scoop a little less than 1/2 cup egg mixture onto each tortilla.  Fold ends up and roll up.


5.  Wrap each burrito first in a paper towel and then in aluminum foil.



6.  Place in a freezer bag and freeze.




To Serve:
Remove foil and microwave in paper towel 1 min. 30 sec. to 2 min.

(Recipe taken from http://www.moneysavingmom.com/)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Menu Plan 6/23 - 6/29

Here's what we will be eating in our house during the upcoming week.  (I plan my menus from Thursday to Wednesday because I shop on Thursdays.)  I've tried to note sale prices where I know them.  I'm experimenting on a few things this coming week, so we'll see how it goes!

Breakfast:

yogurt / toast
Mini Cinnamon Swirls (recipe coming in upcoming post!)
Breakfast Burritos (recipe coming in upcoming post!) (Kroger brand tortillas 10 ct. $1.29, dozen eggs $.99 at Walgreens this week, Hillshire Farm Deli Select lunchmeat 5 oz $1 at Kroger)
Blueberry muffins
Poptarts / cereal bars
French Toast Casserole (recipe coming in upcoming post!) (eggs $.99 at Walgreens, Nature's Own bread $1 at Dollar Tree)

Lunch:

deli meat / cheese sticks / fruit
pb&j sandwiches / apple chips (recipe coming in upcoming post!)
Lunchables (from previous shopping trip - $.80 each)
Burger King (w/ friend for playdate)
Lunch out

Dinner: (We will be home to eat 4 nights this week)

Chicken Tortilla Bake (from freezer) / frozen, steamed corn / chips & salsa
Baked Spaghetti / salad / rolls (from freezer)
Broiled Parmesean Tilapia / roasted Asparagus ($1.99 lb at Kroger) / leftover salad / rolls (from freezer)
Chicken & Black Bean Quesadillas (Kroger tortillas $1.29) / Spanish Rice / chips & salsa
Spaghettios / fruit (for kiddos only!)
Dinner Out x2


What's on your menu this week?  I'd love to hear!

Monday, June 20, 2011

CVS Deals 6/19 - 6/25 & My Trip!

There are LOTS of great deals to be had at CVS this week!  Here are my favorites:  (Scroll to the bottom to see what I bought today!)


Get $5.99 ECB wyb Hershey's Bliss Candy, 8.6-9.6oz @ $5.99 (limit 1)
-$1 mc (SS 5/01)
*makes it FREE plus profit!


Get $2.49 ECB wyb PowerBar Energy or Protein Bites @ $2.49 (limit 1)
*makes them FREE!


Get $2 ECB wyb Colgate 360 Surround Toothbrush or MaxClean Toothpaste @ $2.59 (limit 2)
-$1 off 360 Toothbrush (May or July All You Magazine)
-$1 off Toothpaste (May All You Magazine)
*makes it FREE plus profit!


Get $2 ECB wyb Irish Spring Deodorant @ $2.99 (limit 1)
-$1 (Kroger 6/12 insert)
*makes it FREE!


Get $10 ECB wyb $25 worth of select baby products:
Buy (1) Huggies Wipes 184 - 216 ct @ $6
-$.50 (SS 6/12)
Buy (1) Pampers Box Diapers @ $20
-$1.50 (P&G 6/5)
*Pay $24, get $10 ECB
*makes it $7 each!
((Use ECB's toward your $24 total to make this a better deal!  Not bad if you need diapers)


--------------------------------------------------

The girls are going to Vacation Bible School this week, so I have my mornings free and decided I would get my CVS shopping done early this week!  (Plus, we were down to 4 diapers in the house....AGAIN!)

Here's what I got:




I found some candy on clearance today (which my children appreciated!) and also had a $3 Goodnights CVS coupon I had been saving which made those $2.99!  You will see that I spent more than usual out of pocket, but I'm not complaining with all the diapers and wipes I got!!

Total Value: $85.75
Total spent after sales, coupons & ECBs: $9.58
Total saved: $76.17 (or 89%)

I might go back later in the week to get a deal on cereal & to see if I can cash in a raincheck on the Motrin that was on sale last week.  All in all, a good week for me at CVS!!

I would love to hear what deals you get this week!  Let me know!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Trips to Walgreens & Target = More FREEBIES!

The girls and I had to run some Father's Day errands this morning, so we made stops in Walgreens and Target while we were out!

Walgreens had lots of great deals this week.  (See my favorites here.)  We were down to 2 diapers in the house, so my goal was to grab all of the freebies and some diapers!


(Sorry some things in the picture are hard to make out!)  :(

Total value: $53.47
Total spent after sales, coupons, & Register Rewards: $9.79
Total savings: $$43.68 or 82%!

I did 7 total transactions for this purchase!  This was a pretty big feat since I had my two kiddos in tow today!  Luckily, I have GREAT cashiers at Walgreens who are very patient with me!  I did stop my transactions twice to let others go ahead since it was taking me a while to check out. 


I had a REALLY great trip to Target today!  They are usually out of everything I want when I go there - especially on a Friday!  I guess today was my lucky day!  I was hoping they sold American Greetings brand cards so I could use the $2/2 coupon I talked about here, but no such luck.

Here's my picture... (the only thing not in the picture are two greeting cards)


Total value: $58.02
Total spent after sales & coupons: $7.75
Total saved: $50.27 or 87%!

*****DEAL HIGHLIGHTS*****

Through Saturday, Target has a sale running where if you buy a Degree deodorant, you can get a Degree body mist FREE.  I combined this sale with the B1G1 Degree deodorant or body spray coupon from the 5/22 RedPlum insert (expires 6/19) to get them both FREE!  I had a total of 4 coupons, so I got 4 deodorants and 4 body sprays, all for FREE!!!  (If you still have this coupon, they had lots of deodorants and body spray still on the shelf!)


Nivea Mens Body Wash $3.04
-$2 mc (RP 6/05)
-$1 Target coupon
*made it $0.04!


Zyrtec 5 ct. $5.29
-$5 mc (printable)
*made it $0.29!


Neutrogena Eye Makeup Remover $4.94
-$3 mc (May All You Magazine)
-$1 Target coupon
*made it $0.94!


Up & Up Pantiliners $0.82
-$0.75 Target coupon
*made it $0.12


Shout Wipes $0.97 (travel size - great for diaper bags!!!)
-$1 (printable)
*made it FREE!


Tide $0.97 (travel size - great for vacations!!!)
-$1 (P&G $110 coupon booklet)
*made it FREE!


Mead Flashcards $1.79
-$1 Target coupon
*made it $0.79

***************************************************


Did you snag any great deals this week?

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Thrifty Thursdays

I'm actually posting my Thrifty Thursday report ON THURSDAY this week!!!

I had a full day of shopping today and actually did pretty well at a few stores!  Here we go...


My first store was Walmart.  I had several free product coupons that I had been saving up that were going to expire at the end of the month, so I decided to go in and redeem those while trying to snag a few other deals in the process!  Here's what I got...


Total value: $25.24
Total spent oop after coupons: $1.94
Total saved: $23.30 or 92%!

*****DEAL HIGHLIGHT*****

White Cloud Baby Wipes (80 ct) regularly priced at $1.50
-$1 White Cloud Product coupon from June or July All You Magazine
*makes them $.50 each!

Advil "Pocket Packs" 10 ct (found at the register)
-$4/2 coupon from the 5/22 SS insert
*buy (2), makes them FREE plus $.32 in overage!

********************************

The next store I made it to was the Dollar Tree.  I went in for Father's Day cards and bread.  Here's what I ended up with (minus the Father's Day cards).  If you've never bought greeting cards at Dollar Tree, you should glance at them the next time you're in there.  The ones at our store are very high quality and only $.50!


It's unusual to find the large packs of peanut butter crackers there, so I was excited about that!  (I keep these in the diaper bag.  They come in handy when I need to occupy my children's mouths with something other than screaming!!)  :)  Plus, we are planning on having hamburgers next week, so the buns will come in handy.  I'm planning on splitting the packages of rolls and putting them in the freezer to save for future meals.

Total spent: $11.91


Next on the list was Food Lion.  My main objective there was produce and frozen pizza!  (I would have price matched my Food Lion items at Walmart to save a trip, but they don't always have the prices of everything listed in their ad.)  I also ended up buying some discounted ground beef & steak which drove my total up by about $10.

Total value of 8 items: $34.49
Total spent after sales & coupons: $23.28
Total saved: $11.21 or 67%!


After a break for a doctor's appointment, I quickly ran into CVS to redeem (2) FREE Hershey's candy bar coupons that I printed from their website.  I wanted to make sure I got them this week because Hershey's candy was on sale B2G1 for a penny! 



Total value: $3.60
Total spent after sale & coupons: $0.04
Total spent: $3.56 or 99%


Last, but not least, I finally made it to Kroger at the end of the day.  There is a new mega sale this week with the most exciting items for me being cheap Juicy Juice and FREE baby wipes (of which they had none - of course.)

Total value of 25 items: $57.39
Total spent after sales & coupons: $39.38
Total saved: $18.01 or 31%


All in all, I was pretty pleased with my day!  Here's the grand total:

Total value of all purchases: $132.63
Total spent after sales & coupons:  $76.55
Total saved: $56.08 or 42%!


How have you done this week on your shopping adventures?  I'd love to hear!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Cheap Soft Drinks at CVS?!

It has been reported that TODAY ONLY, 6/15, if you scan your CVS card at the in-store CVS coupon kiosk, you will receive a coupon good for a 12-pack of Pepsi or Diet Pepsi for $0.99!

I'm going to head there later today, but if any of you stop in, let me know if you get this coupon!

FREE Business Cards at Staples!

If you are in need of business cards (or think "Mommy" cards or even gift tags, etc.), then you may want to take advantage of this offer from Staples!

Head on over here to print an in-store coupon good for 100 black and white instant business cards (a $19.99 value!).  This offer is valid from 6/15 - 6/18.

I'm so excited about the freebies today!

FREE Candy Bar at CVS!

Hurry over here to print a coupon good for one FREE Hershey's Air Delight Aerated Milk Chocolate Bar.  You should be able to print a total of 2 times.  This coupon is only good at CVS and expires 8/20/11.

Yummmmmm!

Weekly Menu 6/16 - 6/22

Here's a look at what we'll be eating this week!  We have a busy week coming up with softball games and church activities, so I won't have to do too much cooking.  I am really only planning on cooking 3 actual dinners - one of which is already frozen in the freezer and ready to pop in the oven!  I've tried to note where I'm using sale items that are at Kroger and/or Food Lion this week.

Breakfast:

pancakes (from freezer stockpile)
scrambled eggs / bacon
yogurt / toast
chocolate chip muffins (I always keep the ingredients on hand to make these - my daughter loves them!)
cereal bars

Lunch:

grilled cheese / chicken noodle soup (from stockpile)
pb & j / fruit / pretzels
hotdogs (from freezer stockpile) / fruit
deli meat / cheese / fruit

Dinner:

Chicken Tortilla Bake (already prepared & in freezer - recipe coming soon!) / chips & salsa
Ranch Burgers / Seasoned Potato Wedges (Russet Potatoes $.79 lb at Food Lion) / Mac & Cheese (from stockpile)
Chicken & Black Bean Quesadillas (Seasoned Tyson Refrigerated Chicken Breast $1.95 at Kroger, Chi-Chis Tortillas $.69 at Kroger, canned black beans from stockpile) / Steamed Corn (from freezer stockpile) *see recipe below*
Leftovers
Eat Out


Chicken & Black Bean Quesadillas

Spread cooked, chopped chicken, black beans, chopped green peppers, & shredded cheddar cheese over 1 tortilla, top with second tortilla.

Place in a pan sprayed with cooking spray and cook over medium heat several minutes or until cheese begins to melt.

Spray top tortilla with cooking spray & then flip over.  Cook until cheese is fully melted.


What are you eating this week?  I'd love to hear!

$1 Movies All Summer!

If you are looking for something fun to do with your kids this summer that won't break the bank, then this deal is for you!!  This Summer, select Carmike Theatres are hosting $1 Thursdays for the kids!  Every Thursday at 10 am this summer, they will be showing a different children's movie with admission being only $1 for everyone!!

Salem Valley 8 on Apperson Drive is participating in this event!

Here are the movies they will be showing:

6/23 - Hotel For Dogs
6/30 - How To Train Your Dragon
7/7 - Kung Fu Panda
7/14 - Madagascar
7/21 - Madagascar 2
7/28 - Megamind
8/4 - Monsters Vs. Aliens
8/11 - Shrek
8/18 - Shrek 2
8/25 - The Last Airbender

My kids are super excited about this one!

CVS Shopping Trip = unexpected FREEBIES!

I had a little free time on Monday without the kids and decided to go ahead and go to CVS.  Once again, I was pleasantly surprised that they had most of what I wanted!  I even found a few good deals that I wasn't planning on!

Here's everything I bought:


One of the great things about CVS is that they will accept expired CVS store coupons!  I found a few today that I was able to use:

Glade Plug-in Warmer $1.57
-used $1.50 off any Glade product CVS coupon
=$.07!

Secret Clinical Strength travel size deodorant $2.99
-used $2 off any Secret clinical strength deodorant CVS coupon
-used $1 off any Secret deodorant (from P&G $110 coupon book)
=FREE!

CVS Disinfecting Wipes $1.79
-used $1 off any CVS cleaning product
=$.79!

I also found a $1.50 off Bayer aspirin CVS coupon I didn't know I had and one for $3 off any $10 medical purchase that I was able to use also.  Moral of this story.....keep all of your CVS coupons!!!  :)

I spent a little more out of pocket than I needed to to b/c I got a little confused when I was checking out and thought the subtotal was less than it actually was.  (I know that those who know me are shocked about that!)  :)  Anyway, here was what I spent:

Total value: $44.15
Total spent oop: $2.69
Total saved: $41.46 or 94%!!

I used $11 ECBs on this transaction and got back $17.99 ECBs.

Have you scored any great deals at CVS this week?  I'd love to hear about them!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

FREE Father's Day Cards!

If you are still in need of a few Father's Day cards, you'll definitely want to print this coupon for $2/2 American Greetings greeting cards!  (Expires 6/19)

These cards start in price at $1 at Walmart, so you could get 2 for FREE with this coupon!!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Walgreens Deals 6/12 - 18

Here are my favorite Walgreens deals for the upcoming week!  There are several free things!  Let me know if you run across any other great deals as you shop!

Get $2 RR wyb Blistex RPM for Men Lip Care .15oz @ $2
*makes it FREE!


Get $3.99 RR wyb Wal-Fex 24 Hr. Allergy Relief 5ct @ $3.99
*makes it FREE!


Get $5 RR wyb Gillette Fusion Proglide Razor System @ $9.89
- use $4 mc (6/5 PG)
*makes it $0.89!


Get $2 RR wyb Colgate 360 toothbrush @ $2.99
-use $1 mc (May or July All You Magazine)
*makes it FREE!


Get $1 RR wyb Bayer Advanced Aspirin 20 or 24 ct. @ $3
-use $2 mc (SS 6/12)
*makes it FREE!


Get $4 RR wyb Schick Hydro Razor System @ $8.99
-use $4 mc (SS 6/12)
*makes it $0.99!


Get $5 RR wyb (2) Finesse Clean & Simple @ $3.50 ea
- (2) $1 mc (May All You Magazine or SS 5/08)
*makes both FREE!


Nestle Candy 1.4-2.1oz @ $0.39 ea
*buy 3*
-use B2G1 FREE mc here & $0.50/2 mc (SS 5/08)
*makes them $0.09 ea!

FREE 20oz Lipton Iced Tea!

Head on over to the Lipton Facebook page where you can print a coupon for a FREE 20oz bottle of 100% Natural Lipton Iced Tea!

You must "like" them here before you can print the coupon!

FREE Pens at Staples Starting 6/12!

Next week, you can score FREE pens at Staples!  Here's how:


Buy 1 package of Pentel Wow! Retractable Ballpoint Pens, medium, black 18/pack
Pay $8.29
Get back $8.29 in Staples Rewards!
*makes them FREE!

You can then turn around and use your Staples Rewards money on anything in the store you'd like!

Sounds like a good deal to me!  Who can't use a few more ink pens?!

Check out all of next week's Staples ad here.

Thrifty Thursdays 6/9

I had a FULL day of shopping yesterday!  All in all, I ended up going to 8 stores!!!  (Not all of them for couponing purposes!)  :)  I'm going to highlight the ones where I bought things for the family...

First it was Kroger for my weekly shopping trip.  Kroger was definitely less than thrilling this week, with no real great sales to speak of.  It's been a bit of a sale drought there lately.  I did get 2 FREE Luna bars and a FREE Cliff bar after coupons, so at least that was something.

Total value: $67.40
Total spent: $44.43
Total saved: $22.97 (or 34%)


Next, I made it to CVS.  They had about half of the things I wanted still in stock.  Thank goodness once again for FREE diapers from CVS!  Here's what I ended up buying...



Total value: $31.65
Total spent after sales, coupons & ECBs: $1.18
Total saved: $30.34 (or 96%)!


I also ran in Food Lion for some produce and meat.  While I was there, I picked up two 4-packs of PediaSure for $.99 each after (2) $5 catalina coupons I had been saving!



Total value: $36.34
Total spent: $21.55
Total saved: $14.79 (or 41%)


Next it was on to Staples for some super cheap papertowels!  Bounty paper towels are on sale there for $4.99 right now.  Paired up with a $3 Staples coupon and a $1 Bounty coupon (from the $110 P&G booklet), I got this package for $.99 + tax!



I even made it to Target this week...mainly for a great deal on Nivea body wash.  I almost fell over in the aisle when they actually had a few bottles still on the shelf!  Here's what I got...



Total value: $16.01
Total spent: $4.46
Total saved: $11.55 (or 72%)

So....my totals for the whole day were....

Total value: $157.39
Total spent: $72.88
Total saved: $84.51 or 54%!

I'm always happy when I save at least half!!

So, what great deals did you get this week?  I'd love to hear!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Fun and Frugal Summer Activities!

Am I the only one that sometimes gets to the end of summer and is amazed at how quickly the days flew by?  I am often left feeling like I didn't take adavantage of all the quality time I could have spent with my kids!  I think part of the reason I feel as though some of my days are "wasted" is because I didn't plan anything for us to do!!  How often do you get up, let the kids turn on the tv while you do a few chores and then, before you know it, it's time for lunch and naps and the whole day is gone?!

This summer, I've decided to be a little more pro-active!  I've made a list of easy, inexpensive things that the kids and I can do together this summer.  Some involve travel while others don't.  Some require more parental-supervision than others.  In any case, each day that we have "free," I can just simply pick an activity from the list and let the fun begin!!  Most of these activities can be done with items you probably already have around the house.  However, if you don't have it, you can most likely pick it up at your local dollar store or Michael's (use a coupon, of course!!).


SUMMER-FUN ACTIVITIES!

-Visit the local park

-Go to the library to check out new books once a month (Check with your local branch for story-time hours for a free, fun activity for your kids!)

-Feed the ducks at the local duck pond (I keep a bag on top of the microwave that I throw stale bread in so we can take it with us!)

-Fill up buckets of water outside and let the kids "paint" the sidewalk, porch, house, etc. with paintbrushes

-Paint with watercolors (less messy than other paints & are inexpensive)

-Make your own popsicles (Pour your favorite juice/drink mix into ice cube trays.  Cover with plastic wrap.  Stick toothpicks in the top and freeze.)

-Bake cookies from scratch

-Make your own board game (Buy a piece of posterboard from your local dollar store and create a "path" on it.  divide the path into boxes.  write in directions on some of the boxes such as: "loose a turn," "move ahead 2 spaces," etc.  Use game pieces/spinners from another board game or make your own!  Let the kids decorate the game!)

-Play with playdough

-Draw in shaving cream (Squirt shaving cream onto a metal cookie sheet & spread it out.  Let kids "draw" in it with their fingers!  You can also do this on the bathtub wall for a fun bathtime activity.)

-Have a dress-up day!  (Find old clothes, hats, scarves, etc. and have a fashion show!)

-Host a book exchange (Let your kids invite their friends over.  Each child brings 2 books to trade.  This allows you to get rid of books your kids don't read any more while picking up a few new ones to have for the summer)

-Blow bubbles

-Draw with sidewalk chalk

-Have a "living room picnic" (Spread blankets on the living room floor & eat lunch there.  My kids love to do this and it's great when it's too hot to go outside.)

-Have an outdoor scavenger hunt (Give the kids a list of things to find - certain colored leaves, flowers, sticks, etc. and see who can find all the items first!)

-Have a "play bath" (Sometimes, when it's too hot to play outside and the kids are bored, I let them play in the bathtub.  To mix things up, I will sometimes give them bowls/spoons/measuring cups from the kitchen to play with.)


What other great summer-time activities do you do with your kids?  I would LOVE to hear about them so I can add to my list!

Weekly Menu 6/2-8

One of the common misconceptions about couponing is that you only get good deals on junk / processed food and therefore cannot eat healthy and save money.  This, of course, is not true!  While there are many coupons floating around for processed / snack foods, there are also great coupons for all-natural and organic products as well.  And, let's not forget, food is only half of what we use our coupons on.  Part of the idea behind stockpiling is that we use our coupons to buy paper products, personal care items, cleaning supplies, etc. at a deep discount, therefore freeing up more of our money to spend on quality food for our family.

All that said, people are often curious about what we eat during a typical week.  So, I thought it would be fun to post my upcoming weekly meal plan!  This plan is for a family of 4 - 2 adults and 2 children (ages 2 & 5).  I plan breakfast and lunch mostly based on what the kids will eat, but plan dinner for the whole family.  Part of me is a little nervous to share this - I'll admit that my kids don't eat all-natural and organic every meal!!  (Try not to judge me too harshly!)  While I definitely try to watch what my kids eat and make sure they are getting all the nutrients they need, I don't deprive them of some treats every now and again!  And, I'm not the kind of mom who is against using a processed item once in a while for dinner - especially if I paid little to no money for it!

This will at least give you an idea of what a typical week of meals in our home looks like!

Breakfast
fruit
yogurt
toast
egg biscuits
cinnamon pull-apart bread (trying to use up canned biscuits from the fridge!)  :)
frozen pancakes (from frozen-food mega sale @ Kroger - my kids are pancake freaks!) 
cereal

Lunch
fruit (we keep a LOT on hand and eat some at almost every meal)
deli meat
cheese sticks
grilled cheese sandwiches
peanut butter sandwiches
hotdogs
pretzels / Cheetos (on sale this week @ Food Lion - a treat for my kiddos!)

Dinner
(I need to cook 4 meals this week - 2 nights the kids will eat a quick meal because Dad has softball games & we will go out one night.)
Chicken Penne Bake (made 2 weeks ago and put in freezer - more posts on this to come!)
Salad
Green Beans
frozen rolls
Country Style Steak (crockpot recipe)
mashed potatoes
frozen/steam broccoli
Herbed Pork Chops
rice
baked potato wedges
Baked Spaghetti
Salad
frozen rolls


What are you eating this week?  I'd love to hear!