Friday, May 23, 2008

Frugal Friday: e-coupons are rocking my world

I have just recently been introduced into the wonderful world of e-coupons. These things rock!!!
I used my very first ones, with great success, on Tuesday night. Saved myself an additional $4. The coupons are loaded on to your King Soopers Soopercard (or Kroger store). When your card is scanned at checkout the coupons will be automatically applied. HINT: Look for them just under the item you bought, not at the bottom with the rest of the coupons.

The best part about e-coupons is that you can use them in conjunction with paper coupons!!! Talk about maximizing savings. I see a lot more free stuff in my future.

Here are the sites I have signed up with:

P&G eSaver
Unilever Making Life Better

With such a variety of coupons you are bound to find things you can use. I have noticed that so far there are very few food coupons. I hope the food coupons are forthcoming since I don't need all the Health & Beauty products!

For more wonderful Frugal Friday inspiration head to Biblical Womanhood.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Using Whole Chickens to Save $$$-WFMW

Today is Works-For-Me Wednesday hosted by a great blog Rocks In My Dryer. You can check out what works for hundreds of other bloggers by going here.

Something that I have been doing for a long time now is buying my chicken whole. For a while I was getting conventional chickens when they went on sale for $.69 lb. Now I have upgraded to organic chickens from Costco. It is quite a bit more expensive at $1.99 lb, but worth it to me.

I boil 2 chickens at a time in my largest pot or pressure cooker. I use the recipe for Chicken Mix found in the Make-A-Mix Cookery cookbook The best part is that my DH picks all the chicken off the bone for me. I knew he was a keeper!
The broth is cooled in the fridge overnight and then I skim the fat and put it in jars the next day.

I usually end up with about 4 quarts of broth and 6 pints of chicken meat. I label it in glass canning jars and put it in the freezer. CAUTION-the broth must be in wide mouth jars and leave about 2-3 inches clearance at the top! I don't screw the bands on until after it is frozen. And, yes, I'm speaking from experience. lol

We go through about 2 chickens per month, maybe a little more some months. I like that we only have to do this once a month and have meat and broth when we need it.

Grocery Budget-We're Almost There!

I just calculated in last nights groceries and now I'm a little nervous. We only have $30 more to see us to the end of the month. Eek!
Actually, I'm sure it will be fine. This weeks ads were very disappointing. Produce prices seem very high to me. Shouldn't produce be getting cheaper as we get closer to summer?!?!

Here are my plans with the remaining $30. Oh, plus $5 OYNO at King Soopers.
Organic whole grain buns (4 pkgs) $6
Organic crackers (4 pkgs) $4
Kraft salad dressing FREE
Produce (corn on cob, baby carrots...)

Hmmm, how many more days are left in May???

A Little Construction

I am making some cosmetic changes around here. My friend Lisa showed me where I could get these adorable digi scrapbook papers and such to decorate my blog. Check them out here at Shabby Princess.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Clipping Coupons Isn't Worth It?!?!?!

I have heard this from many people. Clipping coupons isn't worth their time. Or, the things they buy don't have coupons.

Well, I just noticed that I have saved over $300 using coupons this month! And the month isn't even over. I think that is worth the hour or so a week I spend finding, gathering, printing and clipping coupons.

I buy a lot of organic and natural items. I find coupons for those items online, the Sunday ads and at the grocery store. I especially love the Mambo Sprouts coupon book. The Organic Valley website has wonderful coupons you can print each month as well.

It looks like my hourly wage for clipping coupons is over $50 an hour! Not bad for something I can do from home in my jammies.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Menu Plan Monday 5/18

I really like how I posted my menu last week! It just works better for me to be a little relaxed about which night we eat a meal. Our stockpile is getting pretty huge. I think I am going to need to start slowing down on some items and really paying attention to what we have and need. Like right now I have dry pasta coming out my ears!
I'm also thinking about getting a larger freezer. We have a small one from almost 10 years ago. It is getting stuffed quite full!


Ham & Pea gravy over homemade biscuits
Spaghetti with crescent rolls
Fast Fixin's chicken nuggets and veges
Potato Cheese Soup
Date Night: Hot Hunan Shrimp from Easy Entrees


Field Day-Lunchables (at school)
Pasta Salad
Egg Salad sandwishes
Leftovers from dinner
Mac n' Cheese


Toast with PB & J
Sourdough Pancakes

To see other menu plans, visit I'm an Organizing Junkie.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Super Savings Saturday!!! Target, Walmart, Whole Foods

I didn't find a lot of deals that were mentioned on Money Saving Mom. It amazes me how different prices and clearances are from region to region! This is why I don't go "chasing deals" anymore. I wait until I have a list of several things at a store before going. That way if a deal or two aren't available it's not a waste of time and gas.
Today I did some price comparing. I was very surprised at the results. The Gerber Graduates items are cheaper on sale at King Soopers than they are at Walmat! Earth's Best items are cheapest at Target-beats out Walmart and KS sale by FAR!
While I was at Whole Foods I asked about buying unbleached flour by the bag since we go through it so fast. I would like to get 100 lbs or so to have on hand. They will have someone call me!

Whole Foods
Organic Unbleached Flour -$.59 lb
Organic Long Grain Brown Rice -$1.59 lb
2 boxes Back to Nature organic mint sandwich cookies -sale 2/$5 -$1/1 coupons
2 boxes Back to Nature organic crackers -sale 2/$4 -$1/1 coupons
Fine Sea Salt -$1.69
2 free fruit leathers & 1 free cookie for kid club (we love kid club!)

Total $15.03

Sandals for baby -$9.99 (birthday money)
2 boxes Earth's Best organic cereal Bars -$1.77 -$.75/1 coupons

Total $12.56 ($2.06 from grocery budget)

4 trial size Old Spice body wash -$.97 -$2/2 coupons
Vanity lightbulbs 3 pk - $3.96
2 boxes LiveActive cereal - $2.98 - $3/1 coupons
2 boxes Kashi cereal -$2 - $2/1 coupons
3 boxes Kraft Bagelfuls - $1.98 -$1/1 coupons

Total $7.30

So that is $24.39 from the grocery budget. Not bad for all that boxed and organic food. I'm glad we still have some carrots, potatoes, lettuce and apples in the house.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Gerber Catalina Deal thru 5/20

Okay, this is not a normal shopping trip for us. LOL We did our regular trip to King Soopers on Saturday and picked up a couple Gerber Graduates items for the youngest. He is self feeding now and desires more variety than I can come up with. A catalina (register coupon) printed out for $2 off our next purchase. I took a look at the deal and decided to stock up on some prepared foods for my little one that we can use on road trips and excursions this summer.

Here is the deal:
Spend $15 on Gerber products and get $2 off YNO
Spend $20 on Gerber products and get $3 off YNO
Spend $25 or more and get $5 off YNO
Participating products are: Gerber baby food, baby juice, Graduates, pacifiers, soothers & teethers, cups, dishes & utensils, bottle feeding and breastfeeding products.

So, I scoured the Internet for more coupons. I also had more of the snail mail coupons. I found some really great coupons at the Gerber website. I did have trouble printing a few, but the CS is very friendly and they will be snail mailing me more. Yay! There is also a great post with links to coupons on Hot Coupon World.
My King Soopers doubles up to $.50 coupons (and anything between $.50-$.99 is turned into $1).

The pictured trip cost me $20.53 oop and I got a $5 catalina! The Gerber products were $8.14 before tax with all the coupons I had. Several of the Gerber Graduates items are on sale through the 20th.

Here is a breakdown of how I worked the deal:
2 Graduates Lil' Entrees-sale $1.79 ea-$.75 coupon (2)
2 Finger Foods Puffs-sale $1.69 ea-$.75 coupon (2)
2 Graduates cookies-sale $1.69 ea-$1 coupon (2)
3 Graduates Lil' Sides-$.90 ea -$.50 coupon (3) (FREE with doubles)
4 Graduates Dices fruit-$.78 ea-$50/2 coupon (2)
2 Gerber Splashers -$1.99 ea-$1 coupon (2)
2 Graduates Mini Fruits-sale $5/2- $1/2 coupon (1)
Plus I used the $2 catalina from Saturday!
Before coupons=$25.14
After coupons=$8.14
Earned $5 OYNO

Monday, May 12, 2008

Meal Plan Monday 5/12

Well, I think I've decided to just plan my meals for the week and be flexible on which nights I actually make them. That seems to be what works best for me.
I'm trying to be good about using the food we have, especially produce and things that will spoil.
Here is what I've come up with for the week.


Chicken Pot Pie (didn't make it last week)
Barley Vegetable Soup
Taco Night
Hawaiian Haystacks (didn't make this last time, either)
MorningStar corn dogs, Cascadian Farms Spud Puppies & veges
Pork Chops, rice & veges

To see other menu plans, visit I’m an Organizing Junkie.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Cloth Diapering for Thrift and the Environment

Yes, I'm talking about cloth diapers! I'm sure many of you have images of Gerber prefolds, pins and plastic pants dancing around in your heads right now. I ask you to set aside your preconceived ideas and prejudices just long enough to read this article. I'm here to tell you cloth diapering has come a long way, baby!

There are now many options in cloth diapering; from thrifty to extravagant. You can use prefolds and covers with pins or a Snappi fastener. On the other end of the spectrum we have All-in-One (AIO) diapers that are similar to disposable because it is the diaper and cover all in one. In the middle you have fitted diapers. They are a shaped diaper that uses snaps or some other closure and you still need a cover.

Are you still with me? Great!

Much has been written on cloth diapering. There are forums and websites dedicated to the topic. Since I am limited in time and space, I'd like to share some great resources with you.
Diaper Swappers
The Pin
Fern and Faerie
Nicki's Diapers

I have cloth diapered all 3 of my children in one way or another. My oldest was in Gerber prefolds, pins and covers. It was functional, but not very fun. It was very cheap, too!
I was given some basic one size fitted diapers with my middle child. They were heaven compared to pins and prefolds. I still used the Gerber covers.
I really was committed to using cloth with my youngest. I knew there were more options out there so I entered the online world of cloth diapering. It has been so much easier to use cloth with him!

I actually use a mix of Chinese Prefolds and fitted diapers. I have even made my own! I use some PUL covers as well as some wool covers. I find myself reaching for the prefolds the most. They are so simple and easy...most of the time. If my little one is crying and squirming I go for the easiest snapping fitted to get the job done fast.

Washing them is pretty easy. I keep them in a dry pail in the bathroom until wash day. My pail is a trash can with lid from Target and a Wahmies diaper pail liner. I love my liner because I just pull it out and dump everything in the machine! I wash on Monday and Thursday each week. I like my routine because I never run out of diapers. There has been no change in our water or electric due to diaper laundry.

I hope I have given you something to think about if you are currently diapering a bum, or bums. Hundreds of dollars can be saved using cloth. But beyond that it is better for the earth.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

New Mambo Sprouts Coupon Booklet! More Free Stuff!

I just got my new Mambo Sprouts coupon booklet in the mail yesterday. Woot! You can get a booklet by mail if you sign up at or pick them up at Whole Foods.

For those living is areas that double coupons there are going to be some freebies!!!

Here are the possible free deals I see, lmk if you know of any other great deals. I'd love to hear what deals you get with these coupons!

These can be found on sale for 10/$10 frequently at King Soopers and other Kroger stores. The Clif Kid ZBars are always $0.69 each or on sale for $0.59.
$0.55 off Balance Bar
$0.50 off Mojo or Mojo Dipped Bar
$0.50 off any Clif Kid Product
$0.50 off any think5 Bar

There are also the following coupons:
$0.75 off any Rudi's Organic bakery product
$0.75 off any TWO Blue Diamond Nut Thins crackers
$0.70 off any Back to Nature product
$1 off any Fruitabu pantry pack item
$1 off any TWO Clif Builder's Protein bars
$1 off any Kashi organic promise cereal
$1 off any TWO Earth's Best Sesame Street Frozen Foods
$1.50 off any Organic Valley Butter
$1.50 off any Organic Valley Lactose Free Milk
$1 off any Organic Valley Eggs
$0.55 off any San-J Dressing, cooking sauce or tamari
$1 off any Boca meatless product
$1 off any TWO Ethnic Gourmet frozen entrees
$1 off any Country Choice organic product
Buy 4 get One FREE Silk Live soy yogurt
$0.75 off any Simply Asia product
$1 off any 8 pack R.W. Knudsen Sensible Sippers juice boxes
$0.75 off any Lundburg Rice Chips
$1 off any one 5.3 oz or 16 oz cup of Oikos organic greek yogurt
$0.50 off any FOUR Steaz beverages or ONE Four-pack Steaz sparkling green tea or Steaz Energy

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Meal Plan Monday 5/5

Last week we didn't make all our planned meals. I was in need of comfort food (and had potatoes sprouting), so we had turkey meatloaf and mashed potatoes one night. We also ended up with LOTS of leftovers and free food over the weekend, so I didn't cook.
This week I am planning leftovers in a lot more to be more realistic with the way we eat.
My baby turns one on Monday the 5th!!! He has decided he doesn't care for purees and would rather eat what we are having. I'm trying to figure out what he can eat without choking, etc. He also is not eating dairy since he is sensitive to it.

Monday: Mexican Fiesta! Tacos & Taco Salad with ground turkey and homemade refried beans

Tuesday: Leftovers


Thursday: Leftovers

Friday: Easy Chicken Pot Pie

Saturday: Mexican again?!?!

Sunday: Probably Leftovers

Other things I will make this week: JalapeƱo jelly, Sourdough pancakes, cook 2 chickens and freeze meat

To see other menu plans, visit I’m an Organizing Junkie.