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Archive for June, 2010

Day 11

June 30th, 2010 at 01:22 pm

Week 1 - $23.17, 18.32 eating out, 4.85 groceries
Week 2 - $ 4.97, 00.00 eating out, 4.97 groceries
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

Here's yesterday's menu

Breakfast
1 1/2 c cheerios
skim milk
1/2 c juice

Snack
grapes
handful of walnuts

Lunch
large salad w/egg, and tomato and low-cal ranch dressing
baked potato w/low-cal honey mustard dressing
1 glass skim milk

Dinner
ham sandwich
tomato soup
2 handfuls of goldfish pretzels
1 glass skim milk

I see everyone has cherries on sale this week. I'll have to get some.

Finished reading the library book Dead in the Family by Charlaine Harris. Paranormal - very good.

Day 10

June 29th, 2010 at 12:53 pm

Week 1 - $23.17, 18.32 eating out, 4.85 groceries
Week 2 - $04.97, 00.00 eating out, 4.97 groceries
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

Here's yesterday's menu

Breakfast
1 1/2 c cheerios
skim milk
1/2 c juice

Snack
grapes
handful of walnuts

Lunch
2 soft tacos
1 glass skim milk

Dinner
ham sandwich
carrots
handful of goldfish pretzels
1 glass skim milk

Snack
peanut butter and celery

Ran errands this morning, library, bank, walgreens and king soopers.

Walgreens

7.29 - 6 pack Boost
3.64 - 6 pack Boost b1g1 50% off
.99 - macadamia nuts
------
11.92
-6.00 - 2 $3 q's for Boost
-4.50 - RR from last week
-----
1.42 - paid with Walgreens gift card from last week's RRs.

King Soopers

Spent 4.97 and bought 1 gal milk, 2 tomatoes and some grapes.

I finished the library book Hosts by F. Paul Wilson. Adventure - pretty good

Day 9

June 28th, 2010 at 01:29 pm

Week 1 - $23.17, 18.32 eating out, 4.85 groceries
Week 2 - $00.00
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

Here's yesterday's menu

Breakfast
1 1/2 c cheerios
skim milk
1/2 c juice

Snack
grapes
handful of walnuts

Lunch
Ham sandwich
carrots
1 glass skim milk

Dinner
large salad
baked potato
1 glass skim milk

Snack
peanut butter and celery

My mom goes to Curves with a woman who works at the local food pantry. She thinks things are getting better around here because last week they only had 3 new applications for food. She said at the height of the recession they were getting 30 apps a week. A month ago they were still getting 10 a week. We'll see, personally I think we've had a lull when things get a little better and then it will get worse again.

I finished reading my book Freedom's Landing by Anne McCaffrey. Sci/Fi - very good

I also finished reading the library book Inked. Paranormal short stories - excellent. There were two writers I haven't read before Karen Chance and Marjorie M. Liu, both stories were so interesting I put some of their books on hold at the library. The 3rd writer Yasmine Galenorn didn't impress me. The fourth writer was the reason I got the book. Eileen Wilks writes a werewolf series that is very good. She also writes under the name Sunny and has two very good series under that name.

Day 8

June 27th, 2010 at 12:14 pm

Week 1 - $23.17, 18.32 eating out, 4.85 groceries
Week 2 - $00.00
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

Here's yesterday's menu

Breakfast
1 1/2 c cheerios
skim milk
1/2 c juice

Snack
1 banana
handful of walnuts

Lunch
went to 3 Margaritas and had a cheeseburger and fries. They have THE best cheeseburgers. $8.50 w/tax and tip

Dinner
celery and peanut butter
banana
glass of skim milk

So week 1 is over with for the challenge. 50% is based on cost, 25% health and 25% creativity. I did ok in the cost department. I think most of my meals were healthy, except for the cheeseburger/fries yesterday. Not so sure about creativity. My meals aren't very creative. I'm going to say the creativity was in buying so much food using coupons and sales.

Overall I feel pretty good about the challenge, except I think about food all day long. Since I'm eating 2 snacks each day, which I don't normally do, I eat every 3 hours or so. It feels like that's all I do, eat, think about what to eat, buy stuff to eat, fix stuff to eat, eat. Then trying to meet all the health recomendations just piles up more thinking time. 2 fruits, 3 veggies, protein with every meal, 3 dairy, 6 whole grains, eat fish several times a week, it's never ending. Maybe if I do it thru the whole challenge it will become easier and I won't need to think so much.

I finished reading the library book On the Edge by Ilona Andrews. Paranormal - excellent

Day 7

June 26th, 2010 at 01:12 pm

Week 1 - $14.67, 9.82 eating out, 4.85 groceries
Week 2 - $00.00
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

Here's yesterday's menu

Breakfast
1 c oatmeal w/splenda, cinnamon and walnuts
skim milk
1/2 c juice

Snack
1 banana
handful of walnuts

Lunch
ham sandwich - 2 slices whole wheat bread, mayo w/olive oil, sliced onions and tomatoes, cheese and ham
carrots
radishes
grapes
1 glass skim milk

Dinner
taco salad - 1/2 bag Dole salad, 1/2 tomato, 1 cup taco mixture, light ranch dressing
taco mixture - 1 lb hamburger, 1 onion, 1 can chili beans, 1/2 package taco seasoning
1 glass skim milk

Snack
celery and peanut butter

The salad, ranch dressing, cheese slice and taco seasoning were free.

I went to Safeway this morning and spent $1 towards groceries and found a dime in the parking lot.

1.00 - Fresh Express bagged salad
1.76 - 2 bags Goldfish pretzels
-----
2.76
-1.76 - 2 .50 Goldfish q's doubled to .88 cents
-----
1.00

More free goldfish Smile

I have 10.33 left to spend this evening if I want to. Mom wanted to go to dinner so I'll see if she still does. If not I may go buy some more milk and grapes.

I finished reading my book The Scarletti Curse by Christine Feehan. Romance - excellent.

Day 6

June 25th, 2010 at 01:11 pm

Week 1 - $13.67, 9.82 eating out, 3.85 groceries
Week 2 - $00.00
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

Here's yesterday's menu

Breakfast
1 high protein Boost drink

Snack
1 banana
handful of walnuts

Lunch
tuna wrap
handful of Goldfish pretzels
1 lemon pudding
1 glass skim milk

Dinner
2 eggs scrambled with a little cheese
baked steak fries w/ketchup
half a can tomato soup
1 glass skim milk

Snack
celery and peanut butter

The tomato soup, cheese and goldfish pretzels were free.

I'm reading the blog of someone else doing the challenge, but not sure how healthy it is. Doesn't seem like very many fruits, veggies or dairy. But interesting anyways because of all the free stuff.

http://www.supercoupongirl.com/

Lots of neighborhood garage sales this weekend, but it's just so hot I'm not going to go.

Finished reading the library book The 5 Greatest Warriors by Matthew Reilly. Adventure - very good. Reads like a video game.

Day 5

June 24th, 2010 at 02:35 pm

Week 1 - $13.67, 9.82 eating out, 3.85 groceries
Week 2 - $00.00
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

Here's yesterday's menu

Breakfast
1 c oatmeal w/splenda, cinnamon and walnuts
skim milk
1/2 c juice

Snack
1 c mandarin oranges

Lunch
ate out at Texas Road House - $9.82 early bird special
1 roll w/cinnamon butter
salad with eggs, tomatoes and ranch dressing
baked potato w/ butter
6 oz Sirloin steak

Dinner
1 slice wheat bread w/peanut butter and grape jelly
1 glass skim milk

Went shopping today and got various good stuff Smile

Walgreens

$15.00 - Walgreens gift card
.34 - 1 can Hunts Tomato sauce w/WAG in-ad q
4.49 - Gillete Body Wash
5.49 - Gillette Deodorant
6.00 - 6 Dentyne gum single packs
.86 - taxes
-------
32.18
-15.00 - 2 $7.50 RRs from ReNu purchases earlier
- 4.99 - free Gillette body wash wyb Gillette DO
- 2.00 - Gillette DO
- 6.19 - 6 $1 Dentyne Gum q's
------
4.00 paid with gift card got back another $4.50 RR for Gillette body wash. Body wash, deodorant and tomato sauce goes to Food pantry. 2 Gums go to mom, (they are cinnamon) other 4 not sure yet. May go to nieces, may go to food pantry. They are peppermint.

Walmart

2.84 - 2 bottles KC Masterpiece BBQ sauce
2.48 - Walgreen brand antacid
.20 - tax
------
5.52
-2.00 - 2 $1 q's for KC BBQ sauce

BBQ sauce goes to mom - she will pay the .84 cents it cost.

King Soopers

3.58 - 2 bags Kroger frozen steak fries
1.98 - 1 gal skim milk
1.99 - 1 lb baby carrots - kroger brand
2.43 - 3 vidalia onions
3.23 - 4 potatoes
3.59 - 1 bag Dole salad
1.15 - 1 doz eggs
1.20 - grapes
.99 - 1 bunch radishes
1.07 - 3 parsnips
.70 - 1 bunch celery
2.50 - 2 packages Goldfish - pretzel kind
-----
24.41
- .10 - 2 reusable bags
-3.00 - King Sooper home mailer q wyb $15 in produce
- .70 - 2 .35 Goldfish q's doubled
- .50 - Goldfish e-coupon
- .75 - Goldfish e-coupon
-3.59 - free Dole salad - KS home mailer q
- .50 - KS Home mailer q on carrots
- .55 - KS Home mailer q on frozen potatoes
-12.00 - 3 $4 OYNO q's from buying Reach toothbrush last week
-------
1.83

The gold fish were a .15 cent moneymaker. All of these groceries were for me.

Safeway

1.06 - 6 bananas
1.97 - 3 tomatoes
2.99 - Welchs juice
-----
6.02
-1.00 - SW e-coupon for Welchs
-2.00 - $2 q for Welchs
-1.00 - $1 OYNO q from last week
-----
2.02

The Welchs was free. All of these groceries are for me. I've spent a total of $3.85 on groceries this week. Now I have over $11 left so I could go out and eat one more time. I do want to go to Safeway this weekend and get a bag of salad for .99 cents - still leavs me $10 to eat out. Not sure what I will do. Hate to leave that money on the table, but there isn't very many good deals to spend it on for groceries this week. I don't like to buy groceries unless I get a very good deal.

I got 2 samples in the mail yesterday. One was Kraft Sandwich Shop mayo; chipotle and garlic and herb. The other was Ritz crackerfuls cheddar cheese and bacon. They will either go to the food pantry or someone in my family. Need to ask if anyone wants them.

I finished reading the library book Holiday with a Vampire III. Romantic Short stories. The first one by Linda Winstead Jones was good, the other 2 were boring.

Day 4

June 23rd, 2010 at 12:00 pm

Week 1 - $00.00
Week 2 - $00.00
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

Here's yesterday's menu

Breakfast
1 c oatmeal w/splenda, cinnamon and walnuts
skim milk
1/2 c juice

Snack
1 deviled egg - mayo, mustard, salt and pepper
1 banana

Lunch
tuna wrap - tuna, hardboiled egg, radishes, mayo with olive oil, flour tortilla, pepper
no sugar lemon pudding cup
1 c skim milk

Dinner
1 1/2 Stouffer's individual meatloaves
green beans sauteed in olive oil, w/ garlic salt and pepper
mandarin orange coleslaw - shredded cabbage with carrots, mandarin oranges and juice from oranges, mayo with olive oil, splenda, salt, pepper and cashews
1 cup skim milk

Snack
1 deviled egg
1 snack pack of Weight Watcher pretzel things with olive oil and rosemary.

Mom gave me the box of Weight Watcher snacks so they were free. The lemon pudding was free also.

This is fairly boring listing menus everyday, but haven't been shopping in a few days to post something more interesting. Plan to go tomorrow since I'm almost out of milk and veggies. Making my list and gathering q's today.

Finished reading the library book Demon Bound by Meljean Brook. Paranormal - excellent.

Day 3

June 22nd, 2010 at 01:55 pm

Week 1 - $00.00
Week 2 - $00.00
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

Here's yesterday's menu, there's going to be a lot of repetition, especially for breakfast and lunch

Breakfast
1 c oatmeal w/splenda, cinnamon and walnuts
skim milk
1/2 c juice

Snack
1 deviled egg - mayo, mustard, salt and pepper
1 banana

Lunch
tuna wrap
tuna, hardboiled egg, radishes, mayo with olive oil, flour tortilla, pepper
no sugar vanilla pudding cup
1 c skim milk

Dinner
1 baked potato w/light honey dijon salad dressing
1 can Chunky Chicken Noodle soup
1 cup skim milk

Snack
1 deviled egg
1 apple

The oatmeal and salad dressing were free on top of what was listed yesterday.

I got $5 of gas yesterday, just enough to get me thru the end of the month. Next month both my credit cards are giving 5% back on gas so I'll wait till then to fill up.

I finished reading the library book In Bed with the Duke by Christina Dodd. Romance - good.

Day 2

June 21st, 2010 at 01:13 pm

Week 1 - $00.00
Week 2 - $00.00
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

Here's yesterday's menu

Breakfast
1 1/2 c cheerios
skim milk
1/2 c juice

Snack
2 deviled eggs - mayo, mustard, salt and pepper

Lunch
tuna wrap
tuna, hardboiled egg, radishes, mayo with olive oil, flour tortilla, pepper
no sugar vanilla pudding cup
1 c skim milk

Dinner
1 1/2 Stouffer's individual meatloaves
green beans sauteed in olive oil, w/ garlic salt and pepper
mandarin orange coleslaw
shredded cabbage with carrots, mandarin oranges and juice from oranges, mayo with olive oil, splenda, salt, pepper and cashews
1 cup skim milk

Snack
banana

The cheerios, juice, tuna, mayo, tortilla, pepper, pudding, garlic salt and pepper mix, mustard, splenda and mandarin oranges were all free items.

Yesterday I went to Walgreens before going to mom's to walk. I converted my RRs from last week to a gift card and got this week's moneymaker. I had 3 $6 RRs and 1 $4 one.

Transaction 1

20.00 - Walgreens gift card
1.00 - 3 Hunts tomato sauce 3/$1 with their q
7.49 - ReNu contact solution
.52 - taxes
------
29.01
-22.00 - 3 $6 RRs and 1 $4 RR
- 2.00 - $2.00 ReNu q
------
5.01 - paid with a gift card and got $7.50 RR

Transaction 2

7.49 - ReNu
.52
------
8.01
-2.00 - $2.00 ReNu q
------
6.01 - paid with a gift card and got $7.50 RR

Both contact solutions and the tomato sauce go to the food pantry. The reason for buying the tomato sauce was so each RR has an item to go with it. This is called a filler - per Walgreens policy you can not have more than 1 coupon per item.

This morning I went again and converted the 2 $7.50 RRs I got yesterday into a gift card

Transaction 1

15.00 - Walgreens Gift card
.34 - 1 can tomato sauce - using Walgreens q
------
15.34
-15.00 - 2 $7.50 RRs
------
.34

Transaction 2 and 3

7.49 - ReNu
.52
------
8.01
-2.00 - $2.00 ReNu q
------
6.01 - paid with a gift card and got $7.50 RR

So still have 2 $7.50 RRs. I made 1.49 on each bottle of contact solution. I plan to buy 1 more this week making $7.45. I will put 2 more RRs on another $15 gift card later this week also. These 2 bottles of contact solution go to my brother.

I finished reading my book Nimisha's Ship by Anne McCaffrey. Sci/Fi - very good.

Day 1

June 20th, 2010 at 12:55 pm

Week 1 - $00.00
Week 2 - $00.00
Week 3 - $00.00
Week 4 - $00.00

The All You grocery challenge starts today. I'm not officially entering, just doing it for the heck of it. The rules are:

You can only spend $25/week, per person for food. That includes all meals, snacks and eating out. If you go to someone's for dinner or a party, then that is ok as long as you don't get free meals for all your meals.

If you have leftover money from one week, you can't use it in another week.

You can use your garden, your stockpile, your coupons, catalinas and register rewards.

Part of the challenge is judged on being creative and eating healthy.

I didn't do anything special to get ready for this, such as buy a bunch of produce and vegetables ahead of time. I did buy milk and bread last Friday because I needed them. I'm low on fresh veggies right now so will need to get some this week. My pantry and fridge are full, but they always are. I consider that part of the challenge.

I fixed several things today in preparation for later in the week. Oatmeal, deviled eggs, coleslaw and tuna salad.

I plan to still buy food for the pantry on my regular grocery receipts and just deduct that from the total. I will also deduct anything that is not food, such as paper products, cleaning supplies and personal care items. Only food that I eat counts.

I will be tracking what I eat each day and posting it the following day. Eating out will be the big challenge for me. I hope I can make it past week 1 Smile

I finished reading the library book Dragon Heat by Allyson James. Romance - OK

Vulnerable

June 19th, 2010 at 12:35 pm

I finally finished updating my financial notebook and made copies of the information to give my parents to keep in case of emergency. It makes me feel very vulnerable having all that information in one place. All my assets are listed and how to access them. If someone unfriendly got ahold of it, it could ruin me. But on the other hand unless I do that, my parents would have no idea where many of my assets were or how to access them. For example, my I-bonds are electronic thru Treasury Direct. I never get mail or email concerning them. Without access information they wouldn't know they even existed, let alone how to cash them in.

Now that I have that done I need to get my will updated. I might do one on the internet. The last time I did it my nieces were very young and I didn't include them in the will. Now I plan to cut out my sister and brother and leave everything equally to my mom, dad and 2 nieces. My nieces are still young and I really don't think it's good for their character for young people to have money handed to them in their 20's and 30's or younger. I think people learn more when they have to struggle a bit to get money and make choices about what's more important to them when spending money. Easy money is a sure way to ensure they don't value money, or the work that goes into getting it. So hopefully I will still be around for at least another 20 years or so Smile

I finished reading the library book Nauti Deceptions by Lora Leigh. Romance - very good.

free toilet paper

June 18th, 2010 at 11:12 am

I've been playing the King Soopers Summer Savings game for a week and I finally won for the first time yesterday. 1 free 4 roll pack of Angel Soft toilet paper. I got it when I went to the store this morning. The game is still good for the rest of the summer.

I also got:

5.00 - 4 more Reach toothbrushes
.40 - taxes
------
5.40
-1.25 - BOGO q - no overage this time
-1.00 - .50 q doubled
-2.00 - $2/2 q
-----
1.15 - got back another $4 OYNO q - made 2.85. 3 toothbrushes go to mom and dad and 1 to food pantry. I have 9 for food pantry so far and will try to do one more deal next week.

1.76 - 2 Luna bars
-1.76 - 2 .50 q's doubled to .88, cost of bar
------
FREE - the bars go to the food pantry. These coupons came from coupons books that CURVES is giving out. My mom has been giving them to me. This book also has No Yolks coupons, which I love. Hope there's a sale on these soon.

1.98 - 1 gal milk
2.50 - Sara Lee bread
.72 - bananas
-----
5.20

Last night mom called while dad was in the other room. Wanted to know if I would go to Staples today and get a letter opener for him for Father's day. Only thing she could think of to get for him. There is a 15% off coupon on Staples good thru tomorrow so I printed it off and went this morning. The most expensive one I could find was under $5, but I got it and used my 15% coupon. Ah well, she'll have to figure out something else, or make do Smile

Finished reading my book Fire and Ice by Julie Garwood. Romance - excellent.

Avatar

June 16th, 2010 at 08:39 pm

My youngest niece came over today to sweep my garage and porch. I paid her $25 for this half hour chore. She did a really good job, but it was basically just a way to give her money for her trip to Hondurus.

We went to King Soopers to rent Avatar from the Redbox there. I had a promo code to get a free rental. While there I also got the following

3.00 - 3 3 bar packs of Ivory soap
5.00 - 4 Reach toothbrushes
.63 - taxes
----
8.63
-3.00 - 3 $1 q's Ivory soap
-2.00 - 2 $1 q's Reach Toothbrush
-2.22 - 1 BOGO Reach
-2.22 - 1 BOGO Reach
-----
-.81 - I didn't know the BOGO price would be so much or I would have gotten some bananas as a filler. Instead the cashier just zeroed out the order. But I got a $4 OYNO coupon. No money spent - $4 made. I was glad my niece was with me to see the transaction. I've tried to explain to them how I get all this free stuff and sometimes make money, but their Dad basically acts like I don't know what I'm talking about. So seeing is believing. I'll have to try to go back and do 1 or 2 more transactions on the Reach. I have a few more coupons.

We went to Taco Bell for lunch. Her favorite. $6.91 for the two of us - can't get much cheaper than that. The movie was really good, if long, we both liked it.

I also went to Walgreens and still no Neutrogena. My favorite cashier told me she had a customer who came in and bought 4 cases of the lip balm. Paying about $3.75 and getting $10 OYNO coupons each time. That's good for her, but there are other people in the world. I try not to get too greedy and wipe out all the merchandise when I do deals. I did find out the Schick razor deal I did on Sunday was even better than I originally thought since there is a Try Me free rebate out for it. So I will make $8+ on the razor.

Also went back to Walmart and got 2 more of the Hillshire farm lunchmeat. I had my coupons this time so got 2 tubs for $1.54 or .77 each.

I finished reading the library book The Marriage Trap by Elizabeth Thornton. Romance - good

nickel and dimeing

June 14th, 2010 at 12:01 pm

I'm not nearly as good as baselle at finding money on the streets, but every once in a while I find a bit. This morning it was raining and mom and I walked at Walmart. Last fall when we were walking at Walmart she saw a dime on the ground and pointed it out to me. I said don't you want it and she said she didn't want to bend over and pick it up, so I did.

A couple of days later I was getting groceries at Safeway. I got $55+ worth and after coupons I gave the cashier that dime to pay for my groceries and he gave me back 4 cents in change. I told my mom that story and she loved the fact that I paid for groceries with that dime and got change back.

The next week when we were walking I found a nickel and said "aha! grocery money" and it just so happened I bought around $25 of groceries that week and it came to exactly a nickel after coupons. So I love finding money on the street, it always makes me think I'll get free groceries.

While we were in Walmart today we saw they had Hillshire Farms lunchmeat on rollback from $3.88 to $1.12. We both got 2 packages. I have some .35 cent off coupons and am tempted to go back and get some more and freeze them. However, it was a major hassle and I'm glad my dad checked out with his while we were still walking. They rang up at $3 and he had to take the CS back and show her the sign. By the time I got to the same cashier though, he already knew they were ringing up wrong and just fixed mine as he went. If I go back, they probably won't have it fixed and I'll have to go thru the same hassle. Ah well, we'll see if I feel like it tomorrow.

I subscribe to the Denver Post because they usually have much better coupons than the local paper. However, yesterday they only had $4 off the Schick Hydro razors which makes them free except for taxes at Walgreens this week. Since I'm not buying them for myself I didn't want to pay taxes on them. But my parents give me their coupons that they don't want and they had a $5 coupon which makes them a moneymaker of .51. So on the way home from walking last night I stopped at Walgreens and they still had a bunch of them and I picked one up. Now I have $23 in RRs that I need to use or put on a giftcard. I'm waiting to see if they restock on the Neutrogena.

I made $33 from the garage sale my parents had. The last day was pretty miserable with the rain, but they still got lots of people. We had 4 inches of snow in one of the mountain towns and it snowed down to 10,000 feet. We are at 7,000+ feet so we just got rain and cold. Third day I've needed my furnace. But I'm not complaining I like it cooler. I'm sure it will heat up soon enough.

Here I thought I didn't have anything to blog about today and I ended up with a long post Smile

I finished reading my book The Wayfarer Redemption by Sara Douglass. Sci/Fi - good.

free car wash

June 13th, 2010 at 12:23 pm

It's raining today, so when I went to Walgreens this morning I got a free car wash courtesy of Mother Nature Smile

Walgreens did not have all the deals I read about, but I did make $7.80 on the Nivea body washes. They were out of the Neutrogena bars which would have been a big moneymaker, and I only got a $4 coupon on the Schick Hydro razors, meaning I would still have to pay tax to buy them and they're not worth it to me.

I did get 3 of the Nivea body wash for men

5.99 - 1 body wash
.41 - tax
----
6.40
-3.00 - Q
-----
3.40 - used gift card that had put previous RRs on and got $6 RR back. Profit $2.60. Repeat 2 more times and made $7.80

I also got 2 6 packs of Boost on sale buy 1 get 1 50% off.

7.29 - first boost
3.64 - second boost
----
10.93
-3.00 - 2 1.50 q's
-----
7.93 or 3.97 each

I had to turn the furnace on for a little while yesterday - it got under 40 degrees. But I definitely like the cooler weather.

I got a great sample pack in the mail yesterday from P&G

4 Cascade Extra Action tablets
1 Bounce sheet
1 Travel size Tide with Frebreeze package
1 trial size Pantene shampoo
1 trial size Pantene conditioner

I finished reading the library book Devlin's Justice by Patricia Bray. Sci/Fi - good

coupon tips

June 12th, 2010 at 01:22 pm

Well my soup was not the best soup I've ever had, but it was tasty and filling. I gave a big bowl to my parents for their dinner tonight and have enough left over for at least 2 more dinners for me.

I had tuna wraps for lunch and I made mandarin orange coleslaw to go with it. Really good. Coleslaw mix, with chopped up mandarin oranges and cashews. Mix mayo, some of the orange liquid from the can of mandarin oranges and salt and pepper and combine everything.

Over the last year of heavy couponing I've learned some tips that have really helped.

1. Seperate your printed coupons with insert coupons. This keeps them from sticking together and having the cashier miss one. If I have too many printed coupon vs insert coupons, I bend the corners of the printed ones so they seperate.

2. If you want to know if your coupons will double, look at the bar code on the coupon. If it starts with a 9, it won't double. If it starts with a 5, it will.

3. Most of the printed coupons are bricks coupons. To know this look at the address and if it says bricks.com it's from the bricks company. Usually you can print 2 coupons by pressing the back button until a second one prints. But before I print my coupons, I click on the Help link in the lower right corner. A seperate window opens and sometimes there is an option to have the coupon mailed to you, if you fill in your name and address. I do this twice and in about a week I will get 2 more coupons in the mail.

4. Walgreens has a special button on their cash registers that lets them print a rebate reciept for you. This is great when you are buying more than one item that you have rebates on, or just like to keep the original receipt in case of a return. I printed out the instructions and hand them to the cashiers, since they never seem to know how to work their registers Smile The instructions are here:

http://deals.families.com/how-to-print-a-rebate-receipt,t110...

It's raining on and off today, but my mom said they are still getting lots of people at their garage sale. Dad is happy - he's made over a $1000. He sold a riding lawn mower for $880 and has more big ticket items to go. Well worth the effort - unfortunately he has a summer cold and is very sick. He catches colds very easy. He gave me his cold last September. First one I'd had in over 5 years so I'm trying not to get too close.

It's hard thinking of your parents as old. Both of mine are in pretty good health, but have general aches and pains. My mom is 70 and is in excellent health. She's probaby the healthiest in the whole family including all the aunts. My dad is losing his hearing and has bad hips and is generally worn down. But he's pretty healthy overall.

I finished reading the library book Devlin's Honor by Patricia Bray. Sci/Fi - good. This last week I've been reading all library books and have one to go. For some reason I had a bunch due on the same date and none of them were renewable, so I've been scrambling to get them all read by Monday.

whatever I have soup

June 11th, 2010 at 11:18 am

I decided to make soup today. I don't have a recipe per say, but just decided to throw in whatever I have. From my freezer I took cooked hamburger meat, Steamfresh potatoes and greenbeans package and frozen corn. My refrigerator donated carrots and celery. My pantry coughed up onion, canned tomatoes, pinto beans, mushrooms and chicken stock. I'll add thyme, salt and pepper and see how it all turns out after a few hours in the crock pot.

My parents are having a garage sale today and tomorrow. I took some stuff over to add to it. Be nice to get rid of some things and make a little money too.

I finished reading the library book Eight Days to Live by Iris Johansen. Mystery - good.

Used Walgreens RRs at Safeway today

June 10th, 2010 at 03:14 pm

I had planned to go to Walgreens today and convert my $9 RRs to giftcards, but after reading Elisabeths blog I used them at Safeway instead and they worked beautifully to buy me lots of veggies.

I spent a total of $4.30

10.68 - 12 Kraft cheesy explosion mac and cheese
-6.00 - 6 .50/2 q's doubled
-----
4.68 - all to the food pantry

2.98 - 2 Kraft salad dressings
-2.00 - 2 .55 q's doubled
-----
.98 - plus I got a $1 OYNO cat. This finishes up what I needed for the $10 Kraft rebate so sent that off today.

3.00 - 3 Zone bars
-3.00 - 3 .50 q's doubled
-----
FREE - go to food pantry

1.58 - 2 cans Kuner white beans
1.19 - lettuce @.79/lb
.24 - celery @1.72/1b
.86 - 2 potatoes @.50/lb
.26 - 2 carrots
1.59 - bagged shredded cabbage
3.00 - 3 lbs apples
-----
8.64
-1.00 - Safeway q for bagged apples
-----
7.64

Then went to Walmart. They were supposed to have KC BBQ sauce on rollback for $1, but our store had it priced $1.42 so didn't get that.

5.52 - 4 cans Muir Glen organic tomatoes
-4.00 - 4 $1 q's
-----
1.52 - food pantry items

2.00 - 4 packages Taco Bell Taco seasoning
-2.00 - 2 $1/2 q's
-----
FREE - food pantry items

.97 - bananas @ .44/lb
.88 - bunch of radishes
----
1.85

I spent $6.20 on Food pantry items and $1.60 on groceries for me.

The food pantry gets

12 boxes mac and cheese
3 Zone bars
4 cans tomatoes
4 packages taco seasoning mix

I'm thinking about unoffically doing the All You Challenge. It starts June 20 and goes for 4 weeks. You have to track everything you eat and anything you spend on food. My pantry and fridge are pretty well stockpiled with food, since that's just the way I eat anyways. I just think it would be interesting to see how I do, but I don't want to officially enter.

Last night mom called and wanted to go out to eat since they didn't feel like cooking. Of course I said yes. We went to Texas Roadhouse. I had a coupon for a free appetizer that they gave me when they severly undercooked my steak on one visit. We ordered the cheese fries. They were huge - a platter of fries, cheese, bacon bits and ranch dressing. They were so good, we all loved them. However, because they were so hugh I ended up just eating the fries and my salad. I brought my steak and baked potato home for another meal. We went during their early bird hour so we got our dinners for $7.99 instead of $9.99. Two meals for $10.

I finished reading the library book Guilty Pleasure by Lora Leigh. Romance - good, but I like the breed and dangerous men series better.

All You grocery challenge

June 9th, 2010 at 12:50 pm

All You magazine is sponsoring a grocery challenge. They did this last year too and it was pretty interesting following some of the blogs about it. Basically the rules are you can spend $25 per week, per family member for one month. Then you track what you spend and what you eat. This includes eating out. If it weren't for the eating out part I could easily spend less than $25 a week on groceries Smile You are also judged on creativity and how healty you eat. You can eat from gardens or stockpiles, you can use coupons, sales etc. The winner gets a $1000 grocery card. It's pretty interesting.

I also read this on Common Sense with money blog today for anyone who does swagbucks.

"Swagbucks is offering 50 free Swagbucks on your birthday. Just hop on over the the Swagbucks homepage to record your birth date (or you could do it under account details too), and you will get the free bucks on your birthday. How is that for a birthday present?"

I finished reading the library book Fire Along the Sky by Sara Donati. Historical - excellent.

Leap to Cheap

June 8th, 2010 at 01:33 pm

PatientSaver had a really great post about an article in AARP called The Leap to Cheap.

http://patientsaver.savingadvice.com/2010/06/08/the-leap-to-...

I enjoyed it alot and found several quotes that are excellent

"they've found ways to be wealthy that don't depend on earning more cash or buying more things."

"thrift is more about knowing what you cherish, then skipping the rest"

"Someone drops a million dollars on you—how would it change your life? More than 9 out of 10 replies said, in so many words, that money cannot alter their lives."

Last night I finally got the movie Julie and Julia from the library. I've had it on hold for about 6 months and at one time there was more than 400 people waiting for it. It was pretty good. I really enjoyed the portrayel of the relationship between Julia Child and her husband. I gave it to my mom to watch before I have to return it.

Being inspired by the movie, this morning I made Julia Child's 6 minute boiled eggs, which she calls a substitute for poached eggs. They were so good. The yolk was creamy and rich and yummy. Eggs seem like such a simple food, but I love them for flavor and variety - you can do so much with an egg.

I finished reading the library book The Good, The Bad and the Uncanny by Simon R Green. Sci/Fi - very good.

it's too darn hot

June 7th, 2010 at 12:24 pm

It's been over 90 for the last several days and no rain. That's way too hot for me. I like it between 40 and 70. We've had to take our walks around 8 at night and it's still in the 80's. Come back cool weather Smile

Went to both grocery stores this morning.

King Soopers

2.18 - 1 gal milk
3.76 - 2 Lean Cuisine @1.88 each
4.00 - 2 Dove deodorants
.32 - taxes
-----
10.26
-2.00 - catalina from Kraft salad dressings
-2.00 - 2 $1 q's for Lean Cuisine
-4.00 - 2 $2 q's for Dove deodorant
-----
2.26

The deodorants go to the food pantry

Safeway

5.34 - 6 boxes Kraft cheesy explosion mac and cheese
-3.00 - 3 .50/2 q's doubled
-----
2.34 - these go to food pantry and toward kraft rebate

1.98 - 4 Butterfingers - Buy 2 get 2 free
.10 - tax
-----
2.09
- .99 - 1 free item q
-----
1.11 for 4 large candy bars

3.00 - 4 Bumblebee tuna pouches
-2.20 - 4 .55 q's
-----
.80 - goes to food pantry

1.58 - 2 Sobe Lifewaters
-1.29 - free item q
-----
.29

3.49 - Kraft 100 calorie snack Cheese
-3.29 - free item q upto 3.29
-----
.29

Food pantry gets

6 boxes mac and cheese
4 pouches tuna
2 deodorants

I finished reading my book The Tower and the Hive by Anne McCaffrey. Sci/Fi. ok

I also finished the library book Hot Rocks by Nora Roberts. Mystery/Romance - excellent - the dialog is so good.

the lightbulb goes on

June 6th, 2010 at 12:58 pm

I was not naturally frugal as a child. I spent all of my allowance every week. I chose to become frugal in my 20's. One of the major influences to that choice was reading this article: How to Retire Six Months Every Year in the Mother Earth News.

http://www.motherearthnews.com/Nature-Community/1970-05-01/H...

The articles basic premise was that by not spending everything you made you could work less. This was a revelation to me and the frugal lightbulb went off in my head. From that time on I searched for ways to be frugal because my goal of not working was more important to me, than the things I could buy.

The frugal lifestyle worked for me and seems like a second skin now. I actually enjoy and take pride in not spending a lot on things. But it was not the attitude I was born with. My brother was born a natural frugalist. He always had money when we were growing up. My sister and I would spend all our allowance and borrow a dollar from him till payday and pay him back a $1.05. Good deal for him, bad deal for us Smile

One of my friends is frugal by necessity. When they got married they were deeply in debt from a failed business venture of his, where he declared bankruptcy, and after she had a child she wanted to be a stay-at-home mom. So even though he makes very good money and they finnally paid off his debts, they live very close to the bone, where $5 makes a big difference. She doesn't care for the lifestyle but considers it worthwhile to be able to stay home with the kid. If things changed, they would not be frugal.

I'm sure there are others who were dragged kicking and screaming into the lifestyle because of some emergency or circumstance of life and as soon as possible will return to their spending ways.

I think some people are frugal for philosophical reasons such as saving the environment, or not wanting to consume too much.

I think it's interesting the way people arrive at the lifestyle and if they stay in it long-term. For me it was a conscious choice made to meet my goal and I've never regretted not buying more things or living in a better house, having new cars every year, etc. All the things people told me I should do on my journey from then to now - retired, house paid off and extremely happy with my life.

I finished reading the library book Arms-Commander by L.E. Modesitt Jr. Sci/Fi - very good.

grocery day

June 4th, 2010 at 11:53 am

Several things didn't go right today on my grocery trip. According to the reciept I saved 87%, but I would have saved more if more of my e-coupons had worked. It's weird how you dwell on the couple of things you didn't get free, instead of all the other things you did get free or made money on Smile I guess they bug me so much because these particular things were stuff I wouldn't buy unless they were free or cheaper - hamburger helper, Nut clusters, chex mix.

I spent $10.25. $5 for the food pantry. Some of the rest was for nieces first apartment stockup.

Safeway is having a buy 8 or more and get $4 off sale, so I had to buy at least 8 of the sale items, after the first 8 they were all at the sale price. So I didn't have to buy in multiples of 8.

1.49 - Chex snack mix
-1.00 - .50 q doubled
-----
.49 - this is where one of my e-coupons didn't work or it would have been free. For my niece.

2.98 - 2 boxes Cheerios
-1.00 - $1/2 q
- .55 - e-coupon
-----
1.48

3.00 - 3 boxes Hamburger Helper
-1.00 - .75 q doubled
------
2.00 - supposed to get a .75 e-coupon but didn't. These are for the food pantry

1.99 - Nature Valley nut clusters
-1.00 - $1 q
-----
.99 - supposed to have a $1 e-coupon. for niece

1.96 - 2 boxes Kraft cheesy explosion
-2.58 - 2 free item coupons
-----
.62 money maker - goes toward kraft rebate and to the food pantry

1.96 - 4 boxes regular mac and cheese
-2.00 - 2 .55 q's doubled
-----
.04 money maker - goes to kraft rebate and to food pantry

1.49 - cheetos mighty zingers
-1.00 - q
-----
.49 - for niece

13.41 - 9 cans Crystal light
-9.00 - 3 $3/3 coupons
-----
3.41 - 2 to brother, 2 to niece, 5 to food pantry

3.00 - 4 packs Bumbleebee albacore tuna
-2.20 - 4 .55 q's
-----
.80 - food pantry

1.58 - 2 Sobe lifewater
-1.29 - BOGO q
-----
.29

2.00 - 2 110 ct boxes Kleenex
.19 - taxes
-----
2.19
-2.00 - $2/2 q
-----
.19

Food pantry gets

5 cans Crystal Light
4 packages tuna
5 boxes mac and cheese
3 boxes hamburger helper

Niece gets

1 Chex Mix
1 Cheetos
2 Crystal Light
1 Nut Clusters

Brother gets 2 Crystal Light and I get the rest.

I finished reading the library book The Lost. Mystery short stories - some good, some not

I also finished the library book The Burning Lamp by Amanda Quick. Romance - very good

Shrek

June 3rd, 2010 at 04:39 pm

I took both nieces to see Shrek Forever After today. We all thought it wasn't very good compared to the others. I'm really tired of the 3D stuff. Mom got 2 free movie codes a couple months ago for buying Smart Ones at the grocery store, so I went to Fandango and got two tickets from there. 2 tickets - $9 each. I bought one at the theater for me. I got 4 bags of Hershey's pieces candy last week at Walgreens so I let them each pick one bag for the movie. We went to Red Robin for lunch. My niece had a free hamburger coupon for joining their e-club. Lunch was $26 even though they took off $9.50 for her burger. Expensive day made better with freebies Smile

I sent my niece a site to sign up for birthday coupons since she's over 18 now. I got so many this year I wasn't able to use them all.

Cold Stone - free ice cream
Schlotsky's - free sandwich
Noodles and Company - free bowl of noodles
Red Robin - free hamburger
Ruby Tuesday's - free hamburger
Subway - free 6" sub wyb 1
Red Lobster - $5 off

http://abundantfoodsavings.com/index.php?option=com_content&...

I finished reading my book Street Game by Christine Feehan. Romance - excellent.

May food pantry totals

June 1st, 2010 at 01:53 pm

I spent less than budgeted in May for food pantry items - only 14.91. I'll use up that other $5 some other month. I donated 96 items so 4 short of my 100 item goal.

The month was closer to normal spending wise - I spent @ 1500 for the month. I only ate out 9 times so that's good progress. Groceries and Eating out were about the same amount. $76.29 for groceries and $75.94 for eating out.

Yesterday I went to my sister's for hamburgers and hotdogs for nieces bday. Her bday isn't until next Monday, but sister decided to celebrate this weekend since everyone was free. My parents were there too. I drove over with them and we went back to their home after cake in the afternoon. We wanted to walk but it was still too hot at 3:00 so I played games until it cooled down at 7:00 then played more games until I went home at 10:00. I only won 3 games out of about 15, but that's ok, playing is fun regardless.

I went to King Soopers today for 3 more free Kraft salad dressings and a lot of veggies. I'm in the mood for salads right now. So tonight a baked potato and salad. Spent about an hour prepping all the salad stuff so I can just pull them together when wanted.

I got another $5 giftcard from Amazon using my Swagbucks so I ordered 3 more books from them - total $32.39. I almost have enough for another gift card. I've really been getting a lot of swagbucks lately. I got 50 the other day.

I finished reading Paranormal Romance - a series of short stories. Very good.