Thursday, December 31, 2009
I will allow myself the following: chicken, dairy, produce, FREE items, or items that cost under $1 (after cpns and sale). I will also purchase laundry, cleaning, and paper products as needed.
I am hoping to pocket the extra cash that I save towards our 2010 Disney vacation!
Tuesday, December 29, 2009
1. I will faithfully shop at Kohl's. When they say, "no hassle returns," they mean it - and I like it! If only they didn't have a returns line...
2. Toys R Us can be tricky. We needed to return a Loving Family dollhouse piece that we had duplicates of. I had a gift receipt. Apparently, my MIL had scored the piece on a BOGO deal. Toys R Us claimed that it was the "free" one and gave me a really hard time exchanging it. (We did not want $$ back - just a new toy.) So glad that my 3 year old started to cry, because then FINALLY something got done. I will be careful with them next year - and I will be careful with gift receipts too; in this case it didn't help me one bit to have one.
3. Internet shopping is great, but make sure you don't have to return it. By the time I repackage, go to the post office, pay postage, and WAIT, I don't even want it anymore.
4. Target will not return or exchange without a receipt, period. The only exception is if you have the card that it was bought on and they can "look up" the item. Good thing I had my hubby on speed dial to recite his debit card number, or those too-small pj's would have haunted me forever!
5. TSC (Tractor Supply Company) = easy, breezy returns. No line, friendly, down-home people. It must be the farm thing, right? I loved the ease of this return (and the cute pjs I got on clearance today.)
How did your returning go?
Monday, December 28, 2009
(for 2 lbs of ground beef)
Combine in bowl:
2 T chili powder
4 t onion powder
2 t cumin
2 t garlic powder
2 t paprika
2 t sugar
2 t oregano flakes
1 1/2 t salt
2 t cornstarch
Add this mix to 2 lbs of browned, drained beef with 3/4 c water. Simmer until thickened. (Add more cornstarch if you like your mixture really think.)
This made the BEST tacos that we have ever had! No more packets for me!
I am planning a freezer cooking day soon. I have a friend who is having surgery and could use some meals. I figure that I can do the shopping and put away a few extra things for her family.
I will be planning a ground beef day. That will include: shepherd's pie, tator tot casserole, beef enchilada casserole, sloppy joe casserole, meatloaf, and a few new recipes to try.
Why not plan a day and put away 8-10 meals for hectic nights and feed your family well?
We have one more Christmas this week, so my tree will stay up for a few more days... I may start to take down some of the "little pretties" though.
I don't know about you, but we have some returns to do at our house this year. So, I have made an executive decision. I am not returning toys for even more toys this year (you should see how many they got; truly ridiculous). We are returning toys for: white socks, undershirts, 2 sizes too big snowboots - next year, and maybe a pair of tennis shoes for me.
I figure, why not use the cash from duplicate toy returns to purchase what we really need? I think that it is a good plan, but I'm sure that I'll have to do it kid-less :)
Monday, December 21, 2009
***Oh, and did I forget to mention, that I will be rejoicing because we had a debt-free, cash-only Christmas! :)
Sunday, December 20, 2009
- 50 FREE prints
- a set of 6 FREEphoto coasters
- a set of FREE photo stickers
- a FREE 4X6 photo flip book
You can also get FREE upgraded 2-day shipping on the coasters and the flip book, so you CAN get them in time for Christmas!
I just did this order and paid 14.95 for shipping, tax, and 5 extra pages in my photo book. What a great deal!
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Revlon Super Lustrous or Moon Drops Lipstick $6.99
Get $5 ECB
Use $2/1 from 12/13 SS
Final Price: FREE (limit 3)
Listerine Mouthwash or Pocket Packs $3.99
Get $3 ECB
Use $1/1 from 12/6 SS
Final Price: FREE
Crest Pro Health Toothpaste/Rinse or Oral B Floss $2.88
Get $2 ECB
Use $1/1 from 12/6 SS Crest Toothpaste
Use $1/1 from 11/29 P&G oral B Floss
Final Price: .88 moneymaker
Nivea Body Wash $5.99
Get $5 ECB
Use $2/1 HERE
Final Price: $1 moneymaker
Thermacare Wraps 1 ct $2.49
Get $2.49 ECB
Final Price: FREE
Alteril Sleep Aid $1.99
Get $1.99 ECB
Final Price: FREE
And, if you have a little one in the home, here is a great deal on diapers!
Use $2/1 from 11/29 P&G
Final Price: $6.88
Thanks, My Frugal Adventures, for the heads up!
Friday, December 18, 2009
*Central OH friends: we have Meijer and you too can do this deal today or tomorrow. Hurry in!
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Today's meal was goolosh. I used leftover cooked macaroni (maybe 2 cups), browned ground beef (about a half pound), and half of a bag of frozen mixed veggies from the freezer (all recycled foods). To that I added: beef broth, a can of tomatoes, and a bay leaf. Combined all in crockpot and cooked on low for 3 hours. Served with sprinkled cheddar (so the kids would eat it) and it was sooooo gooooood!
I estimate that the cost of this meal was under $3.00 and it fed our family of 4 for lunch and will again for dinner. That's what I'm talking about... :)
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Monday, December 14, 2009
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Thanks, UCreate!!! (I love her site - so many ideas, so little time...)
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
10. Batteries, all shapes and sizes
9. A secret stash of chocolate for stressful days
8. A gift certificate for a massage or a new hair cut
7. A just-for-fun book (not on parenting, organizing, cooking, or cleaning!)
6. Babysitter a gift card for a date night
5. Freezer meals
4. Bath products - fancy ones that we would never buy ourselves
3. Magazine subscriptions (All You contains coupons!)
2. Mr. Clean Magic Erasers (they do wonders for crayon on the wall/floor)
1. A night away (a women's retreat ticket, classical concert/ballet, scrapping weekend, etc.)
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
And, I have officially had my first ever completely CASH-ONLY Christmas! This included shopping for my immediate family (3 + me), my extended family (9), close friends (2 families), teachers (5 at preschool, many at church), neighbors (2), and giving toys to a local charity (we bought 5!) Woot-Woot and Thank You, Lord!
Monday, December 7, 2009
Friday, December 4, 2009
Week Long Sale prices good Sun – Sat
Emergen-C Immune Booster 2 pk -- $3.99
Kid Essentials -- $11.99
Also, all toys are buy 2, get 1 free. (excludes Zhu Zhu pets!)
Follow these links to find some really great deals today!
1) Get a subscription to BabyTalk magazine for FREE!
2.) FREE phone call from Santa courtesy of Kroger!
3) A good giftable idea: Creamy Chai Tea Mix!
4) FREE coffee creamer courtesy of International Delights (by becoming a fan on Facebook)!
4.5) FREE crafts at Michael’s for kids on Saturday from 10-1!
5) FREE photo with Santa at WalMart, Saturday and Sunday, 10-2!
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
This month has been both challenging and liberating for me. I have done (at times) more than I thought I was physically and emotionally able. I have done simple, little things that I would have never thought of before.
I have grieved. I have loved. I have taken on new projects. I have given up old things. I have left coupons at the store for the next person to find. I have worked hard for little earthly reward. I have given little love gifts to my spouse (that I'm not sure he even noticed were gifts...) I have celebrated. I have prayed harder and for more than myself and my family. I have talked to my kids about giving. I have tipped more than normal. I have thanked more than normal. I have given. I have received. I have LIVED WELL this November.
I am thankful for this opportunity to intentionally focus on giving. Those of you who know me, know that giving is an essential part of what makes "me." After all, I am the lady who took her kids to work at the food pantry every month when they were 2 and 3! :) What I liked about this month was the opportunity to think outside of the box for new practical ways to give.
I hope you enjoyed the challenge as much as I did. I'd love to hear some of the ways that you gave this month. Feel free to comment below.
One last thing: I found it fitting as my kids and I were hitting Kroger yesterday (Nov 30th), that there was a Salvation Army bell ringer at the store. As I emptied out my change for the kids to give, we saw a soldier in full uniform. I simply said, "Thank you for your service." As my eyes welled up with tears, my son repeated me and added, "and have a Merry Christmas." As we stood there, our eyes locked and that moment was worth it all! I pray that my children remember to be thankful and always praise the One who is the Giver of all good gifts...God with us.
Have a blessed December and as Grant says, "have a Merry Christmas!"
"Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."
Luke 6:38 NIV
"Give away your life; you'll find life given back, but not merely given back—given back with bonus and blessing. Giving, not getting, is the way. Generosity begets generosity."
Luke 6:38 The Message