Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Reasor's-save 5 cents or more each trip :)

If you bring in your Reasor's reusable shopping bags when you shop at Reasor's, they will give you 5 cents off each reusable they use :) So, if you do alot of shopping there, you could save some money-not a lot, but it does all add up ;) From what the sign reads, it has to be Reasor's reusable bags, though. I have been able to buy their bags for right around $1 and our store has a very pretty light green one, with an beautiful pic on it (which is why I bought it :)
Hopefully this will be a program they will continue for a very long time, if not indefinitely! It would be nice to be rewarded for using reusable bags (even though I know it is a great reward that I am helping to save the environment )

Monday, April 27, 2009

Some Great Drink Recipes

Family Fun put out a great newsletter this week with some fun, and I might add, healthy drink recipes-well, most of them are healthy ;) As I looked through some of the recipes that caught my eye, I noticed they were all pretty frugal. You can use frozen bananas you have on hand (you know, that stash you put up in your freezer when they started to get too ripe and the kids would not eat them because they thought the nanas were rotten?), add in some yogurt that you got on sale (or maybe is left in that big container you bought and none of the kids want-hmmm), or use up some fruit that is in your fridge getting close to expiring, but needs the bad parts cut off :)
Also, I know my kids love icy drinks when it is warm :) They actually love anything cold, but ice cream has gotten so expensive that we reserve that for a special treat. My kids favorite drink is Magic Milk Shakes. It is easy and really very good. We have even found we do not need to add as much sugar as called for and I usually have most ingredients on hand! We have taken out the cocoa and added in a bit more vanilla, less sugar, and made vanilla shakes. Banana added in is also a winner here :)

Here is a list of many other icy drinks :) I noticed my kids don't even notice it when I add ground flax seed to berry smoothies-making them much healthier and giving my kids the great benefits flax has in it-so you might try that too with these :
Family Fun: Ice Cold Drinks
Easy Kids Recipes: Easy cold Drinks
Family Fun: Ready To Whir Smoothies
Mexican Juice Drinks (this could be fun for a party!)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Goal Setting Sunday

Got the house clean-atleast I think I did-lol!! It seemed to be never ending, though. Ahhh--life with children ;)

This week, I plan to get back to my exercising. I took a bit of time off because of the head cold I got, and now, I think allergies are getting to me, but I need to get back to working out before I become lazy and don't do it at all!! Remember, this is to get strong in my body and I want to not give up now!! We were also blessed with some weights, so I plan to use those as well :0) I am pretty good at lifting 8.8 lbs-lol! It's a start, right?

My goal this week will be to get my front porch clean. You see, we have a lovely maple tree in the front yard. I loved it--was thrilled to have a house with a maple when we moved in. I forgot maples make those hurly-copter seeds--you know the ones that fly/spin through the air and were so much fun when you were a kid? I still like them, I guess. Well, I did like them, until I found out how much of a mess they would make on my front porch! I noticed they seem to be almost all gone from the tree, so I want to get my porch cleaned off and sweep those lil things away (reminder to self: wait for day when wind is NOT blowing toward the porch ;) Then, I will wipe down the table, clean the windows and window sills (exterior) and wipe down my front door-all these have gotten dusty/dirty over the cold months and need some attention :) I promise to post pics-before and after :)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy Earth Day!!

Enjoy this day with your family by doing some good things for the Earth! Leave the tv off a bit longer, maybe eat a fun dinner by candle light (or eat it early enough to enjoy the light from the sun-maybe even eat dinner outside if the weather is nice enough), take a walk, or even talk with your kids about how they can help save energy :)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

And Hubby Gives a Cleaning Tip

Eric had worked on our cars yesterday and he was GREASY-GRIMEY!! UGH! So, thankfully, before bed, he took a shower-whew! After he was done, he called me into the bathroom to show me a nice, clean tiled floor! Woah! What did he do? I envisioned him on his hands and knees, scrubbing away-like I do...No, he discovered, by accident, a new cleaning solution.
Our tile is so hard to clean and I would rather not get the harsh chemical cleaners, but I was beginning to get to that point-I have never been able to really get the mold off. It was nice and white when we moved in-lol! I know it probably needs to be re-grouted (if not completely re-tiled-ugh). Anyway, DH was using his hand cleaner to get off the grease off while taking his shower and some slipped out of his hands, onto the shower floor... he rubbed it around with his foot a bit, in order to break it up so it would slide on down the drain-that is when it happened-he saw how well it cleaned! He grabbed a scrub brush and tried it in other places...it was still working!!
So, if you have gross stuff in your tub or shower, grab some good ol' hand cleaner-the kinds mechanics might use. The brand my husband was using is Go-Jo :)

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Goal Setting Sunday

Well, I did not meet my goal of exercising 3 times this week. I did get in two days, but then got a head cold, or sinus thing-y and took the 3rd day off. No fun trying to bounce around when your head hurts ;)
I did get my two gardens cleaned out a bit-it will take more weeding as time goes on in the one garden. It is a new area I am turning into a garden, so I hope to get something to put down to kill the weeds and find some nice creeping plants to put down. Right now, there are some cute verbena growing that a neighbor gave to me, and a sweet little rose of sharon bush that a friend gave me last year :)

This week we will be getting ready for some friends coming over later in the week-so-clean, clean, clean, and clean some more-lol! Around here, you can clean an area and it gets messy by evening...hopefully the kids will be more respectful this week and not do that to me ;)

Friday, April 17, 2009

Harp's Ad this week

This week at Harp's

Big 10 for $10 sale--

Best Choice KC BBQ Sauce 18 Oz

Griffin’s Squeeze Mustard 20 Oz

Hunt’s BBQ Sauce 21.6 Oz

Lindsey Chopped or Sliced Olives 2.25 To 4.25 Oz

Best Choice Pickle Relish 8 Oz

Best Choice Button Or Sliced Mushrooms 4 Oz

Best Choice Tomato Sauce 29 Oz

Hunt’s Manwhich Sauce 15.5 Oz

Chef Boy Ar Dee Pasta 14.75 To 15 Oz

American Beauty Pasta 12 To 16 Oz

Puffs Facial Tissue 60 Count

Best Choice Soda 3 Liter

Best Choice Flavored Crackers 8 To 10 Oz

Best Choice Microwave Popcorn 3 Count

Gerber Second Foods 3.5 Oz

Libby’s Natural or Gourmet Canned Vegetables 14.5 To 15 Oz

Kraft Pasta Salad Mixes 6.36 To 7.3 Oz

Best Choice Sour Cream 16 Oz

Birdseye Vegetables and Steamers 10 To 16 Oz

Pilsbury Grands Biscuits 16.3 To 17.3 oz

Green Giant Frozen Vegetables In Sauce 8 To 10 Oz

Swanson’s Dinners 6.75 To 11 Oz

Bar-S Jumbo Franks 16 Oz

Bar-S Bun Length Franks 16 Oz

Ole South Roll Sausage 16 Oz

Ole South Fully Cooked Sausage Links 6.4 Oz

Bar-S Bologna 12 Oz

Bar-S Cotto Salami 12 Oz

Armour Sizzle N Serve Pattys & Links 6 Oz

Jennie-O Turkey Franks 12 Oz

MaMa Rosa 7” Pizzas 7 Oz

El Monterey XXL Burritos 10 Oz

Suave Shampoo Or Conditioner 22.5 Oz

Other sale items of note:
Stew Meat-1.99/lb

Zucchini or yellow squash-89 cents /lb

red, yellow or orange peppers-89 cents each

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Food Pyramid This Week

This week at Food Pyramid:

Ground Chuck-$1.59/lb
All Natural Ground Chuck-$2.69/lb
Best Choice Shredded Cheese-$1.66-8 oz.
Boneless Beef Chuck Roast-$1.79/lb

That was pretty much all I saw this week-of course, you might check out the ads yourself to be sure none of the sales apply more to your own shopping list :)

Im trying to get Harp's ad up, but the pdf is giving me problems. As soon as I can view it, I will post the deals I find.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Goal Setting Sunday!

Happy Easter, Everyone!! We are rained out here in Owasso, so we did the dyed Easter egg hunt yesterday to enjoy the outdoors :) Today, we will do the plastic eggs indoors :) Should be fun-two days of egg hunting-lol!!

My goal of getting my inbox cleaned out in my email went pretty well. I was able to get down from over 240 to under 190-lol! There are some surveys I need to do and that will take care of about 7 more emails. I plan to get my inbox under 100 by next week. So, I was not able to dwindle it down by 100 emails as I had planned last Sunday, but that was because I also added to it--hmm--sort of defeating my purpose here...

And, I exercised!! I worked out 40 mins the first day-about 10 mins of yoga and 30 mins of cardio with weights (my weights were some canned veggies from the pantry-lol--start out small ;). The next day, I did about 15 mins. I am using some recorded workouts I found on tv and recorded on our dvr. The second workout was too hard for me to do-mostly because they were using a step and it just did not work for me. The next day, we had plans, so I limited my workout to just doing some push ups, crunches, arm/shoulder exercises, leg lifts and calf lifts. I did about 10-15 mis of these, alternating. My goal this week on that is to do 3 days of cardio-or walking-I want to make sure I am doing atleast 20 mins of getting my heart going, my body sweating, and my muscles improving. I will eventually raise this to 30 mins of working out, but I can tell my body needs to get used to all this strengthening :)

Im going to work in my flower gardens this week. They need to be cleaned up of old debris, weeds, etc. I also have some things I want to plant. Hopefully soon, my hubby will get my veggie garden going :) Im afraid the little seeds I planted in small pots will not like it in those much longer...

Have a blessed Easter!

Friday, April 10, 2009

No Coupons This Sunday and a Coupon to Share :)

There will be no coupons in this Sunday's paper due to Easter. So, just buy the paper for the great comics ;)

Also, my friend, Stacey, who does a terrific cooking blog What's Cookin Stacey?, shared with me that Kum N Go has a coupon for 5 cents off each gallon of gas. This ends Easter Sunday, so if you need gas this weekend, get your coupon and save some moola!

Thursday, April 9, 2009


Im so excited today! I get to tell some Homeschool moms about how I use my coupons :) I imagine some will already know the methods I use, or have seen them before, but it doesn't hurt to maybe learn something new, or get refreshed :)

I have shown you all the notebooking method I use. It has really helped me keep track of my coupons much better. The ones I am not sure I will use I still hold onto.

Here is my method:

Every Sunday, I go through my Sunday paper and look through the coupons. I immediately cut out the coupons I know I will use-toothpaste, hair products, certain pain relievers, etc...things that my family will use everyday, almost, and I would like to save money on. When I am done with those coupon sections, I fold them in half (fold the top over the bottom, so to speak). Then, I take those sections (keep that Sunday's sections folded together-will explain why in a minute) and place them into an accordion file which I have labeled for each month of the year. Also, to help keep things a bit simple and less bulky, while I am looking through those coupon sections, I pull out those ads that are in there-you know, the ones for the shoes, the lil adorable baby dolls, jewelry, etc and throw them away. I do not need them, I do not use them and they will just take up too much room :) Yes, I know, it's just paper, but enough of those can take up too much valuable coupon space ;)
Now, why do I fold each week's coupon sections up together? And, why do I save them? Well, I fold them together because it makes it easier to locate each week, within that month, and I can find coupons for those deals these wonderful bloggers post about later on! On the side of pretty much each coupon section, in teeny-tiny print are the dates :) If I keep these sections together by date, it makes it much easier than trying to read each section for their date! I also started, since this past weekend, writing the dates on the outside too!! In BIG numbers-lol!! Now, I can see the dates quickly. So, when some wonderful, amazing blogger share Such and such is on sale at This and That Place and I can use So and So coupon from Supersaver (usually listed as SS on the blogs) or Red Plum (listed as RP), etc...I can go to that month's coupon section in my accordion file, pull out that week's coupon section and go right to that particular coupon section to find my coupon-I put it in my notebook under the area that is for use this week and add that to my shopping list-with the word coupon written beside it so I do not forget ;)
This has helped me. Last time, I once again saved over $10 at Walmart. Not a whole lot, but what can you do with an extra $10? That could be at least 5 days of lunches for my kids-or perhaps 2 dinners for my whole family (with frugal recipes of course ;) It can be almost a half tank of gas for our Durango. Or, maybe even a treat for myself-like a new shirt or something :) But, I often like knowing that money is in our bank account for other uses ;)
So, sorry for this coupon review--I know I have talked about it before, but maybe there is a new reader who might like it! And, please, keep an eye out on the blogs listed in the frugal section--you will find some wonderful ladies who really have searched for great deals using the coupons! You won't be sorry!!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Cream of Anything Soup

In one of my meatball recipes, I pour cream of mushroom soup over the meatballs in the crockpot. My hubby and I like the soup over pasta or rice. I realized I would not have enough with the one can I had to make 'gravy'. I remembered often seeing recipes for Cream of Anything soup and realized I actually had enough of the needed ingredients to try it out. I used Budget 101's recipe. To try it out, I made 1/4 of the recipe. This was hard-lol! When you are trying to divide a recipe, and kids keep coming in to ask you all sorts of things, you lose your concentration...not fun :P
My results, though, were wonderful!! It was really good! I was surprised! For some of the liquid called for, I opened a can of mushrooms and drained out some of the liquid into a measuring cup. I, then, added water for the rest of the liquid needed. I chopped some of the mushrooms from the can into small pieces (only because if my kids see mushrooms, they freak out-lol). Also, I kept out the bouillion called for. I added that in when I made the actual soup. I was not able to do the math on that part-lol!

After trying it out, and everyone loving it, I made the whole batch. I still left out the bouillion, so this way, I can use beef flavor, chicken flavor, etc when I need it. I added a note to my recipe and to the baggies in which I packaged the mix to add in the bouillion.

There are tons of recipes for make your own mixes, as well as some great frugal tips on Budget101.com. Here is a link to the recipes section Make Your Own Mixes and Convenience Foods
They also have Gluten Free Food Mixes

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Goal Setting SUnday

Trying to get back into the swing of things now that my computer seems to be running fine. Im going to try something new in this thread to keep myself motivated--reporting my exercise--ugh! I have long wanted to start walking around my neighborhood, but I have used excuse, after excuse to not take time to do that for myself! Im not looking to necessarily lose weight, but I need to get moving for my health. I do hope this will help me maintain my weight at the same time. I also need to stop the snacking in the evenings. I can go all day just fine with watching what I eat, then evenings come and I feel so hungry-so I need to cut that out! So my exercise goal this week is to walk around our neighborhood 3 days this week, 20 minutes, at least, each time.

My other goal this week is to get ready for Easter. I have lots of plastic eggs to fill, and I might be able to get my older kids to help with this.
I also need to work on cleaning out my email inbox. I have many, many emails just sitting there, that I need to go through and put into folders. For instance, I often will send recipes to my inbox to view later. I either need to put those in my favorite places, print them off and delete them, or place them into appropriate folders within my mail box. There are also many homeschooling sites I have sent myself. It is time to move those to appropriate places to save and use for later :) Right now, my inbox sets at over 240 unread emails, or emails read and meant to be saved for later use. I need to dwindle that down and keep my inbox open for new things ;) Plus, Im not sure what all is there and I need to be sure I am not missing something good ;) I would like to get this down to at least 100 emails by the time I update this goal next Sunday :)

Have a great week everyone! And, if you would like to join in on any exercise goals, feel free to comment! Perhaps we can keep each other motivated!! 

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Frugal Easter Ideas

Every year this becomes an issue. I try to get candy for the kids, but I don't want them getting sugar highs all day Easter. So, I try to find frugal ideas for things that can go into baskets, and even the eggs. This year is just like every other year-only Easter snuck up on me!! How? I mean, it is not like it came early this year. Usually, I am more prepared. Plus, my 2nd oldest daughter will be having her 13th birthday on Good Friday-so I have to add in her present for that weekend too :)

One thing I have done in past years was to use those candy melts from teh store (Walmart has even carried them in the past) and use molds to make little candies to go into eggs. Im not sure if this is less expensive than buying candy, but when my kids saw the cute Easter-themed shapes they were thrilled! And, it probably did cost me less than buying those sorts of chocolates. Another year, I used those same molds to make crayons for my kids (no, I did not use the molds for candy again). My kids went nuts and all it took was melting down all those little crayon bits we had in a container waiting for something to be done with them :) I was even able to make some neat colors, or put a few different colors in one mold to make interesting tye-dye crayons :)

As the kids have gotten older and not into the cutesie things anymore, it gets a bit harder to figure things out-frugally that is :) So, in my search I found some folks with great ideas. Here are links to their pages-I hope you can find some unusual ideas to make your baskets fun this year-and affordable!
Thrifty Fun
Thrifty Fun Easter Basket Ideas
Frugal East Baskets by Deborah Taylor-Hough
Thrifty Fun: Easter Basket for Coffe Lovign Teens (or other family member/friend)

And here are some suggestions for all those decorated hard boiled eggs:
Ideas for Using Leftover Easter Eggs
We tend to have alot here since all the kids want lots of eggs to decorate, so this link was very helpful to me. We eat eggs for breakfast and I make deviled eggs for lunch. I also make deviled egg potato salad which helps to use up some eggs. I also love tuna salad with boiled eggs in it-yum!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Goal Setting-whoops-dropped the ball this week!

No, really, Im not trying to avoid it! I forgot due to the computer issues I was having. I would try to get online, do what I needed to do (and some days that was difficult) and sign on. I think I have figured out my computer issues, and hopefully fixed it, so I should get back to the Goal Setting schedule :)
That doesn't mean I laid off my goal setting offline. I made my curtains last week as I had planned and I like them ;) I will try to get a pic posted soon.
But, sadly, I never did get to my dresser or my room-well, some of my room :) So, perhaps that is a job for next week ;) Im sort of waiting to tackle my dresser until I see the warm weather set it. We just had about 7 inches of snow here last weekend, so you never know what the weather will do around here. I hate to have all my winter clothes packed away and need them ;)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

How to Buy a Ham

I really do not know this. For years, I have been buying a spiral cut ham from Aldi's which suited us fine. But, I noticed I could not get as much out of it as my mom always seemed to with the hams she bought. So, I decided to do some research on the subject (don't ya love search engines?). I am also wanting to catch one of the deals on hams right now that are not spiral cut-I can cut it myself, just not in a spiral-lol! It all goes down the same way, right?
I found this site which offered the difference between butt and shank portion hams-as well as some other good info. Butt offers more meat than a shank, but you pay more per pound. Of course, if it is only a 10 cent per pound difference, I think you would probably be getting your money's worth :)