Current Projects

  • Couponing like crazy!
  • Turning Junk into Treasure!
  • Saving Plastic Bottles from Landfills!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Back to School Series *SPENDING*

Here are some great tips from All you magazine, designed to slash your back to school spending!
** Start at home** You might be surprised by how many supplies are already in your house. Send the kids on a scavenger hunt; whoever finds the most items on the teacher's list gets a prize.

**Leave the kids home** You're more apt to avoid impulse buys if your daughter isn't there begging for a Justin Bieber notebook. Want to treat your children to a few items? Make a separate trip.

**Get classics for free** Many of the world's great works of literature and philosophy can be downloaded for no cost and printed in a variety of formats at

**Make one trip to shop at a store that price-matches.**
Staples, Office Depot and Office Max all have price-match policies, meaning if you see an advertised price on a certain item, any of the three businesses will honor that figure (including instant rebates). So pore over the circulars, then save gas money by heading to the nearest retailer. (Walmart is my favorite price-matching locale)

**Hold out** No one needs 18 new fall outfits on the first day of school. Transition summer clothes by layering until stores start discounting their autumn collections (usually about a month in).

**Swap before you shop** In addition to holding a clothing exchange with other parents-or through a website such as consider selling old sports equipment and instruments and using the credit or cash to buy the next size at used

**Calculate the cost** Think ahead to when your children will need pricey upgrades, like a graphing calculator. If your kids are responsible with their supplies, consider skipping the cheaper model and purchasing one they can use for several years.

**Reuse basics** Why buy new every year? Opt for plastic folders, dividers and binders instead of flimsy cardboard ones. If last year's spiral notebooks aren't used up, tear out the old pages and decorate a new cover.

**Work the warranty** If you're in the market for a new backpack or jacket, buy one that comes with a lifetime warranty. L.L. Bean, Land's End and REI are among the companies that will fix or replace worn merchandise for the entire life of the product. So if a backpack gives out in a year, or even 10 years from now, you can pick out a replacement for free.

**Go green** According to the Sierra Club, American families spend, on average, $85 per year on disposable plastic baggies. Show your children the value of a waste-free lunch-and save money-by investing in reusable snack and sandwich bags from sites such as

**Shop for the long haul** When choosing school supplies, price isn't the only factor. Select quality products that are likely to last.

One of these that I am already trying to incorporate is the "go green" tip. I am out of sandwich bags and haven't been able to find a sale. It's driving me crazy! I am trying really hard to get used to using tupperware. I have so many sizes and shapes. I need to use them! I will still keep my out for a good deal on baggies, but you know I love to recycle when possible, so I will continue to try going the reusable route as much as possible.
This is my first year buying school supplies for anyone other than myself. I've been a bit nervous, but the more research I'm doing for this blog series, the more I am finding that it doesn't have to be an overwhelming situation. I will start with a budget and then go from there. I will of course report on my progress. 
That reminds me! There are some fabulous sales on girls' clothing at Kmart right now. I saw them the other day but didn't spring for them as I hadn't decided on a budget yet. Check em out!!

Buy Low & Walmart

 I hit Buy Low and Walmart today. Got home just in time to carry my groceries in during the sudden downpour. Good times!

Buy Low was first:
They were (this is a first!) were out of/or didn't stock, the Pork Butt Roast ($1.18/lb). I was sad, but this did mean I could get more of the .98 Cottage Bread to fill my freezer.  :)
I bought the 32 oz Yogurt at $1.99, before I knew that Macey's has it for like $1.79. :( It is still better than the regular $2.99. :)
The 1 lb bags of Carrots were a steal at just .78 each.
I splurged on the Beef Chuck Steak that is on sale for $2.68/lb.
the cantaloupes, another steal, are just .25/lb!!
Peaches .50/lb!!!

Mushrooms 2/$3
Green Leaf Lettuce .89 each
Celery .99 each
Broccoli .69/lb
Green Onions 4/$1
Roma Tomatoes .50/lb

 So I hit Walmart for a few things also. Their bananas were .52/lb. I ad matched these yummy grapes with Sunflower Market for just .88/lb!!! 

I also matched Walgreen's to get the milk for $1.99 each. I picked up some stuff for my fish while I was there too but didn't take pics of it. My fish adventure has turned into a bit of a money pit, not to mention how emotionally taxing it has been... I am determined and committed to it though. I will see it through. :)
Be sure to check out Buy Low's new ad to find all the other great deals available this week, for instance:
Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast $1.28/lb!!!
Here it is:

Milk Alert!

 Walgreen's has 1 gallon milk for $1.99 this week, limit 2. Do you still have any -.75/1 milk coupons left from This would be a good time to use them!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Babies R Us diaper deal

There is a crazy deal on diapers today and tomorrow only (7/24-7/25) at Babies R Us.  Get any Fisher-Price, Babies R Us brand, Seventh Generation, Earth’s Best, Huggies Pure & Natural or Huggies Jean Diaper jumbo packs for $5.
Guess what, you can still use coupons!!
The deal gets even better if you want Huggies Pure & Natural: buy 2 packs and get a $5 gift card (details here)!!
If you don’t want to deal with the store or coupons, the deal is also available online.  Make it a better deal by signing up for a free trial of Shoprunner to get free 2-day shipping on any order size!!
Diaper coupons:
-$1.50 off Huggies diapers, SS 7/17
-$2 off Seventh Generation diapers, training pants or wipes printable
**Deal Idea**
(2) Huggies Pure & Natural Diapers, jumbo pk, $5
(2) -$1.50 off Huggies diapers, SS 7/17
Total Due: $7
Get Back: $5 Babies R Us Gift Card
Makes it $1 per pack!!
Thank you for this great deal idea!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Ad-Matching Extravaganza!

 The kids and I hit Walmart yesterday with a whole list of items to ad match. We made good time and ended up with an experienced cashier that moved quickly though our order.
  You know I hate paying full price for ANYTHING, but sometimes we have to. I bought the milk at $2.33 per gallon. My husband informed me that we are not "so poor that we can't buy milk" and he want real milk in the house. He's a funny guy, he works hard and complains very little so if he wants milk, I'll buy milk. :)
 The bread was also full price. It was marked $1.08 but rang up $1.25 now that I'm looking at the receipt. Yes, next time I'm in the store, I will get my .34 back! :)
 The 10 count Don Julio tortillas I ad matched with Smith's at .88 each and bought 6 of them.
 The box of Huggies diapers I matched with Kmart for $18.99, then I used the recent -$3/1 Huggies 60+ ct coupon to get them for just $15.99. I'm well stocked on diapers for a little while.
  Holy cereal Batman!!! Yes, that is 11 boxes of Kellogg's!!! I matched all of them with Smith's for $1.67 each. Then I used 3 fabulous coupons; (2) -$5/5 Kellogg's coupons, (1) -$1/1 Kellogg's Crunchy Nut (Nutrigrain breakfast coupon booklet). This made all of them just .67 each!!! We have cereal. Oh yes, we have a lotta cereal in my house. And even the milk to put with it! ;)
  Walmart sells these pens for .97 per pack. A decent price... But Kmart has them for just .48 each this week!! So of course I matched it and then printed (2) -$1/2 Bic products coupons from to get all four packs FREE! If you're anything like me, pens are like cups and socks. You can never have enough and lose one or two each week. Jump on this deal my friends!
 The Ibuprophen was a better price than any others I had seen for the week and my body needed it. I got the 500 ct for $6.98. I also needed non-stick spray and went with the Great Value brand for $1.82.
The whipped topping I matched with Macey's for .88 each and grabbed 5 of them.
The Old Orchard juice is .99 at Macey's this week. I bought 8 and used (2) -$1/4 online coupons that I found using's coupon database, a fabulous resource!
 Finally, I also matched the lemonade with Macey's for  .88 each. We go through lots of frozen juice but this should keep us for awhile when combined with the orange juice from the sale the other week.
Total Retail Value: $149.89 (w/tax)
Total Spent: $59.88 (w/tax) .....and of course I'll get that .34 back later...  ;) 
Now I must go do some chores. Happy Shopping and Ad-Matching my friends!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Yesterday's Shopping Report

 I hit Buy Low yesterday. I just love how they always have their sale items in stock! I even found a couple of unadvertised little goodies.
 The main ones that aren't listed in my previous Buy Low run down are the Grapes, $1/lb, and the Western Family 98% fat free Cream Soup at .95 each. The ice cream cones were a splurge for my daughter who had immunizations yesterday. :)
 I was thrilled at the register to use one of my $5 Kellogg's cards toward this order. I am looking forward to 4 more coming in the mail any day now! :)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Buy Low Deals!! And recipes to boot!

 Here are my favorites at Buy Low starting today. Check their site for the full ad!
Watermelon 5 lb/$1
tomatoes 2 lb/$1
Lean Ground Beef 1.88/lb
Country Fair hot dog/hamburger buns .98
Olives .98
John Morrell Franks .68
Meadow Gold Twin Pops 18 ct $1.00
w/in-ad coupon
Crystal Geyser 24 ct water $2
w/in-ad coupon
Cauliflower .69/lb
Italian Squash .69/lb
Romaine lettuce .69 ea
Carrots 2 lb/$1
Mangoes 2/$1
Plums 2 lb/$1
Cucumbers 3/$1
Grapefruit 3/$1
128 oz Syrup $5.99
7 lb Buttermilk Pancake Mix $5.99
Bar S Franks .99
-$1/2 Bar S Franks= .49 ea
W.F. 16 oz Sour Cream .99

Wednesday & Thursday only
Nectarines 2 lb/$1
1 lb Strawberries $1.29
Granny Smith Apples 3 lb/$1
Red Onions 4 lb/$1
Green Bell Peppers 4/$1
Green Cabbage 4 lb/$1

Friday & Saturday only
Whole Body chicken .69/lb
Pork Spare Rib 1.79/lb
Boneless Beef Rump Roast 2.49/lb
Pork Loin End Roast family pack 1.19/lb
Ground chicken 1.29/lb

How can you use these sale items to make this week's dinners?
The following recipes include at least 2 ingredients from this week's deals. Some have up to 5 of these items! 
Be creative and daring and you and your family can have yummy, cost effective meals every night of the week!
Happy Shopping and Cooking!!!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Doesn't have to be free.. Deal of the Day!

 With all the exposure 'extreme couponing' has been getting, there has risen a false and popular assumption that if it isn't FREE, it isn't a good deal. NOT TRUE!!! Remember, if you are getting something that your family uses on a regular basis, needs and enjoys, and you are paying LESS THAN FULL PRICE, you ARE GETTING A GOOD DEAL!!! Yes, FREE is a GREAT DEAL! It's just not going to happen every time with every item! Please don't get discouraged! You can save money. You can build a storage for your family. You just need to practice smart shopping and seize a good deal when you see it. Having the right tools definitely helps!
 One of my super hero tools that I would die without, is my favorite website: They have compiled such an amazing assortment of knowledge, coupons, insights, tips and other glory and wonder! EVERY COUPONER needs to follow this site!!!
 I used it today to find a coupon which contributed to my deal of the day. Macey's has Old Orchard frozen apple juice (which my family uses all the time!) for .99 starting tomorrow. I searched's coupon database to find a printable coupon for -$1/4, making them just .74 each. I was able to print 2 coupons, which means I'm getting 8 cans of concentrate. This is, combined with my stock of orange juice, enough to keep us happy for 6 weeks, which is the minimum supply you should get of every item your family uses. (Most items go back on sale approximately every 6 weeks) I don't have room for more than 8 cans of juice, and since I practice 'reasonable stockpiling,' this is an ideal amount. Remember, you don't need a giant crazy stockpile room full of 500 tubes of toothpaste and 80 bottles of salad dressing!!! Get the amount that your family will need for at least 6 weeks, and ideally, if you can store it and keep it from going bad, one year's worth of storage of each item.
 That is my ranting for the day! ;)

Back to School Series

 Hey kids,
I am going to start my Back to School Series to keep everyone apprised of the latest ways to save on school supplies. The deals are already popping up everywhere! Here are a few that I've found already:
Crayola 24 ct crayons or 2ct Elmer's glue sticks .25 each (limit 4)
Crayola Colored Pencils or Markers, 12 & 10 ct  $1.00 (limit 4)
Medium Totes $3.99
Hanes kids' underwear $6.00

A couple other things to be aware of at Kmart:
Huggies Diapers box $18.99 (w/in-ad coupon)
-$3/1 Huggies 60+ diapers= $15.99

Clorox Bleach .99  (w/in-ad coupon)

Smart Sense Pain Relievers B1G1 50% off

Toy Clearance Blowout!! Sale prices $1.99-3.99
I love these kinds of deals for stocking up my gift box, great for birthday parties and early Christmas shopping!!!

1 doz Eggs .99

16 oz Baby Carrots 10/$10

The following items are all just .59 each but have strict limits!
  Scotch Glue Sticks 2 ct
Bic 10 ct Pens limit 2
Soho Clear School Box lmit 4
Marble Composition Book limit 6
150 ct Filler Paper limit 6
 It looks like these deals are only available till TOMORROW!!! So hurry!!!

Shopko also has lots of their items on the B1G1 for a penny deal. You'll have to compare to other stores' regular prices to see if it is in fact a good deal. Remember that Shopko's regular prices tend to be high.

Happy Shopping!
More to come!!!!!         

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A Hot Day Shopping

 The kids and I hit several places today. It was tough but we did it! First stop was the gym. Then the allergy clinic for shots. After that, we hit Walgreens.

 I grabbed one of the Slim Fast packs at $4.99. I had a $1 coupon but it turned out to be expired. :(
The Allergy meds were B1G1 at $3.49 ea. The Gum 2-pack toothbrushes were $2.00 and then earned me $2 in rewards. I bought the brushes first and used the rewards to buy the rest.
Total Spent: $9.00

 Then we hit Buy Low. Lots of great deals! I spent the majority of my budget there.
  Here's what we have:
Tomatoes: .89/lb
Leaf Lettuce .89 ea
Grapes $1.00/lb
Fuji Apples .50/lb

Cauliflower .89/lb
Mushrooms 2/$3

  Nectarines .50/lb
Red onions 3 lb/$1
Yellow Onions 4 lb/$1
Italian Squash .69/lb
Cucumbers 4/$1
White Potatoes 3 lb/$1
Broccoli .99/lb

French Bread .50 each w/in-ad coupon
Garbanzo Beans .50 ea (they were dented, hence the discount. Always check the clearance carts!)
An unadvertised deal I found were the 98% fat free cans of Cream of Chicken soup. I've been waiting for a deal for a few weeks. It's tough being out of a staple!! You have to be dedicated though and stick to the plan! If it isn't on sale, you WAIT!!!  $.95 per can is a good price for this particular item. I cleaned out the shelf. Not nice, I know. :( I don't know when I'll find another deal, so I went a little wild. I also grabbed some of the .69 cans of cream soup that are regular fat content.
Total Spent: $46.00

 After this, we went to Iguana Inks to grab an ink cartridge. They always have what I need and it's always a good price.
 Finally, we hit Shopko in SF to pick up a prescription. While there, I was thrilled to find some of my Slim Fast shakes on clearance for $3.74 each!

 I have a new $1 coupon from the shakes I bought at Walgreen's, so I might go back and buy another pack. I love these surprise opportunities to stock up on staples!
Total Spent: $11.56 (these are regularly $7.99 each at Shopko!!)
It was a rough trip and I was thrilled to get home!! So glad I got it done! The savings really are worth it!! I'm having a fabulous birthday party this weekend for my daughter and we wouldn't be able to do that without all the savings we have acquired through my diligence. I am pretty dang proud of this and I know that all the kids will have a good time. It's all about priorities friends. You save money on necessaries and you'll have money for the fun stuff. 
  My daughter saved her money and was able to buy a fish with her own money. We are all in love with it. I was able to order a nice tank and filter for her and it wasn't hard to do, knowing how much money we have saved in other areas. I'm grateful for the opportunities to teach my daughter how to save and spend wisely. You can do the same with your kids. Be an example and that will make it much easier! :)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

FREEBIES at Walgreen's!

 Here are some fabulous FREEBIES available at Walgreen's this week

$3.99 RR WYB W Women’s 6 Blade Razor System at $3.99 
(makes it FREE) 
$2 RR WYB GUM Micro or Super Tip Toothbrushes 2 pk or Floss 200 yds at $2 
-$1 off Gum oral care product, excl soft-pick 15 ct, Kroger home mailer
 (makes it FREE +profit) 
$5 RR WYB Hyland’s Teething Gel .5 oz, at $5 
-$1 off Hyland’s Teething gel, Earache drops, or Allergy Relief 4 Kids printable 
(makes it FREE +profit)
Thank you!


 So Buy Low has switched its schedule around. It's sales will now run like everyone else; Wednesday to Tuesday. I guess this will make it a little easier. Good news is that you still have to today to take advantage of their $1.99 milk!

Saturday, July 9, 2011


 Friends! Sorry I've been awol lately. I have begun writing a book and it has been taking most of my computer time. I have gotten some shopping done recently and a few other fun things so let's catch up!
 I hit Walmart yesterday to do a bunch of ad matching. Although I usually like to be faithful in supporting my favorite stores, I just wasn't up to making separate trips.
  I matched the Huggies with Smith's for $8.69.
-$2.00/1 Huggies Snug and Dry
The Kellogg's cereals I also matched with Smiths for $1.67 each.
-.70/1 Rice Krispies
-.70/1 Crunchy Nut  (both of these coupons are from a booklet I picked up at Walmart recently.)
The bananas were great at Walmart's price of .45/lb.
The Fuji apples I matched with Buy Low for .50/lb.
The Peaches were also .50/lb at Buy Low.
The French Bread was .79 at Buy Low.
The Leaf Lettuce I matched with Macey's for .79.
 The gallons of milk are $1.99 each at Buy Low.
I matched Buy Low again to get the 12 oz frozen Orange Juice for .99 each.
The Danimals and Danonino yogurts were $1.87 each at Walmarts price.
-1.00/1 Danimals yogurt
-1.00/1 Danonino yogurt
The bucket of ice cream was $4.99. I needed it for a get together tomorrow and just went with best deal I could find there. If I had room in my freezer, I would jump at the next chance to have a couple of inexpensive boxes of ice cream on hand. You know how I HATE to pay full price for ANYTHING!!

 I ended up paying just $3.28 out of pocket for this whole order. Let me tell you how this miracle happened!
I received a phone call the other day from ProPay, the service I use to process credit cards for my Mary Kay business. They were doing a focus group and invited me to be part of it. I was going to say no until they mentioned the $40 thank you gift card I would receive! For just one hour of my time and a small amount of gas, I earned this fabulous gift card which paid for the majority of my order! Lesson learned: Jump at ANY chance to earn extra money! (legally of course. )    ;)
 When you have your eye on the prize and putting in the effort to do good things for your family, the Lord pours out all kinds of blessings. You just have to be open to receiving them!

 So I just got my first Kellogg's $5 prepaid gas card in the mail the other day! Using the codes from the many boxes of specially marked cereal I've been buying lately, I will end up with probably 7 or so gas cards. That will not only make all of my cereal FREE, but will earn me a nice chunk of change on top of that! Again, seizing opportunities!!
 As I was putting away my new diapers, I noticed an offer for a FREE Huggies onesie on the package. Buy using just two codes from the diapers that I have already bought, I will order 2 FREE onesies which I will add to my gift box to have on hand for future baby showers. The limit is two per household.

 Where else can you get FREE stuff or great savings?? Everywhere!! The opportunities surround you! Just open your eyes and be more aware and you'll be amazed at all the great deals you will find!

 Happy Shopping and Saving!!!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Flowers at Shopko

 Thanks to a fabulous tip from my neighbor, I hit my local Shopko to take advantage of their 75% off gardening department! I only spent $6.46 and brought home a huge variety of perennials! Average prices: .54-.67 each!!! And they were all in surprisingly good condition!
 If you are wanting to add to your landscape or even just a few potted plants to your porch, jump on this deal!! Even if the perennials don't look fabulous this year, they will come back next year and be amazing! All for a fraction of the price you'll pay at the beginning of next season! With enough water and proper care, you can definitely plant them now!!!
 There are also tons of other gardening supplies available at rock bottom prices! I will be going back for their Arbor Vitae trees at $1.16 each! I will add them to my "living fence" in my backyard. I am so happy to be saving this kind of money! For around $10, plus a couple bags of peat moss, I will finish my fence!
 You can have a beautiful yard without spending a fortune. You just have to know when to shop. It also doesn't hurt to put the word out to family and friends that you are in the market for some plants. Many gardeners thin out perennials in the fall. If they know you're interested, you could be on the receiving end of some fabulous freebies! I have acquired so many wonderful plants that way!
 Happy Shopping and Gardening!!!