Friday, July 31, 2009

Frugal Friday, saving on the cable bill

It's been nearly 8 weeks now since we cancelled the cable and decided to go television free. Yes, I said it. We have had NO tv since June 2nd.

This decision came about after my hubby and I sat down to review our budget again. We are in the habit of doing so every few month to see what is working and what isn't.

We were spending around $45 every month on just the expanded basic program. And that was on a special! We decided that even if we suspended it for just the summer we could save about $150 that could pay for other things, like that pesky van payment.

We did not even have a converter box at that time. Our government coupons we requested had been given to another family member that had multiple televisions and needed the extra boxes. Yet we were not daunted by that. About a week after the cable was pulled, my mom decided to move and no longer needed her converter box and gave it to us. Ironically 7 weeks later, it is still sitting in its box next to the tv, we haven't hooked it up yet!

The kids were sad initially; the first few days they would ask for cartoons repeatedly and were upset when I reminded them there was no tv. There were the typical "I'm bored" remarks, but I reminded them of all of the toys and options they had to keep them busy. They haven't asked about the tv in weeks.

We do let them watch their movies a couple times a week. And we go to the library regularly to pick up a "new" movie they haven't seen before. Hubby and I do the same, and have enjoyed seeing many movies we hadn't heard of before that were great.

One great side effect I have seen in the kids with this experiment is their empathy and patience has really improved. They are playing together better and aren't so quick to get upset with each other. They still wrestle and fight, but it seems better. Plus they are playing with their Leapster games more. The Leapster is an age appropriate 'video game' that they love to play, and the lack of television has re-sparked their interest in it. They are all learning games where they have to often solve math problems or find letters to play. Just the other day one of the twins said "Mom, did you know the ring tail Lemur has 10 rings in his tail"; all from the Animal Genius game they have. I love that game!

On the adult side, I have become addicted to the silence in the house after the kids are in bed. I love to read and have also found this time to be so peaceful to get lost in a book. I still wonder how things got done around the house as we still can't keep a handle on the cleaning etc. How did I have time to do that when I watched tv at night?

All in all, this has been the perfect time of year for this experiment. We spend so much time outside during the summer that we haven't missed the tv much. I have one child who would prefer to live outside all the time, so we have to force him in at night anyways.

This has been a wonderful challenge for our family, and I am proud of ourselves for doing it and saving our money in the process. The big question is: Will this still work when football season starts? The hubby may break down them!

This article is linked to Frugal Fridays at lifeasmom, check it out!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Pierce's highlights

Here it is, finally! The weekly Pierce's ad post. As always, these are the deals as I see them, be sure to check the ad yourself to find the sales that work for your family.

Fresh Cantaloupe $1.58 - this is a pretty average price in the summer
Blueberries $1.38 for a pint- I will probably freeze some at this price
Jif peanut butter $1.88
Smuckers jelly $1.48
Oreos 2/$5, use $1/2 from tearpad in store
Kemps milk 2/$4

***There is a coupon on the front page of the ad that reads "Save $2 on milk when you buy 2 packs of oreos. So buy 1 milk and 2 oreos (use $1 MQ) and get all three for $4!!

Gold'n Plump drumsticks or thighs family pack $4.99
Velveeta cheese 32 oz, $1 off- combine with "buy two get $3 in free pasta" MQ from awhile back

Pasta roni/Rice a roni 4/$5, use $1/3 IP or MQ
Dole crist Lettuce head $0.99
Santa Cruz organic lemonade 2/$4 , use $0.75 IP

That is all folks, have a great week!

Pierce's ad review and Walmart issues

I am working on the Pierce's ad this evening and I hope to get it up on Thursday midday. Thanks for your patience. Also wanted to let you know that I had a horrible experience with a clerk at Walmart today that accused me of coupon fraud. I will be writing about this experience soon, once I get resolution on it. The call has been made to their corporate headquarters and I hope to hear back from them in a day or two. I will keep you posted.

Have a great day!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Piggly Wiggly deals

Here are the deals I see for Piggly Wiggly this week (the ones that work for my family). The top deal is probably the .99 gallon of milk (store coupon) with any $10 purchase! Right off the bat, pair that with the ½ gallon of chocolate milk when you buy a gallon of white milk coupon (it's an internet printable coupons)! There are also some Fiber One deals…buy four products and get a free box of snack bars. Could make for some cheap items.

Pork Chops $1.49/lb
Sunchef boneless chicken breast $3.99
Grapes .99/lb.
Peaches .99/lb.
Cantaloupe .99 each
Braeburn apples .99/lb.
Cucumbers 2/$1
Tombstone Pizza 4/$10 (match up with coupons and utility rebate)
Country Hearth or Village Hearth bread 3/$5
Eggo waffles 2/$4
Hunts ketchup .99
Creamette Pasta 10/$10

Cascade $2.99 (pair with the $1 off coupon)
Ziploc storage or freezer bags 2/$3 (lots of coupons out there)

Much thanks to my sister JC for compiling thess deals based on the current Piggly Wiggly ad.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


Hey folks, look what $4.65 bought for me today at Target!

I took the kids to a park today that was very close to the Target. My sister and I decided a run was in order after we ran let the kids run and play off all their energy.

FREEBIES AND/OR MONEYMAKERS----------------------------
6 Softsoap bottles $2.04 each, used 6 $2 target coupons and 1 $1 IP (-0.76)
Pace salsa $3.29, $4 IP coupon from game (-$0.71)
4 Kashi cereal single serve $1 each, $1 target Q - free
3 Nexcare bandages $0.99 each, $1 MQ (-$0.03)

3 Bounty paper towels $0.99 and 3 Charmin trial size rolls $1, used $1.50 target coupon when you buy 1 charmin and 1 bounty, 0.25 MQ on bounty, 0.25 MQ on charmin -free for all

Arm & Hammer dryer sheets on clearance $2.96, $1 IP
5 Poptarts $1.52, used 5 $0.75 target Q and 5 $0.55 MQ) $0.22 each!
Kashi bar $2.75, $1.50 IP and used $0.50/2 target Q
Kashi granola bar $2.94, $1.50 IP and above
Baby carrots $0.84 on clearance
2 Dole fruit cups $2.04 each, $1/2 MQ from All You magazine
6 Starkist tuna pouches $1.02 each, $1.50/3 MQ, $1/2 target Q = $0.12 for all 6
Silk soymilk $2.44, $0.55 IP and $0.50 target Q

So this is an example how your coupon overage (value of coupon being over the price of the item) can help to pay for your other items. According to my receipt, I saved $50.34 in coupons during this trip. And yes, my out of pocket total was only $4.65. But in the interest of total honesty, I did use a $5 gift card left over from my last visit to Target.

Oh, and by the way, I HEART TARGET!

A TP run to Walmart

I heard there were some TP deals to be had at Walmart, so off I went. I will highlight my sale and coupon items.

Scott Extra Soft tissue %5.23, $1 MQ from mailer

Soy milk $2.73, $2 IP

Chef boyardee cans $0.88, $1 IP (yes, I made money on it)

Ziploc bags $2, $1.50/2 IP

Clearance sponge $1.50, $1 MQ

Scott wipes $2.24, $0.50 MQ

Charmen TP $3.36, $1 MQ from mailer

Scott tissue $2.68, $1 MQ

Angel soft tissue $1, $0.50 IP

So you can see that I was able to get quite a bit with my coupons, and we are set for quite awhile. My out of pocket was $53.86, but I got several other items for the house such as a storage tote and training wheels for one of the kids bikes. I used $14 in coupons on this order!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

I haven't done my grocery shopping yet for the week, but based on our stockpile, we will still be able to have our normal week of meals. I will be doing my normal weekend shopping trip on Monday afternoon instead.

Based on the spending limits set for the All You Grocery Challenge I am participating in, I was too close to do my shopping on our normal day. The challenge allots our family $125 per week which is well above our budget of $70. However, we ordered pizza one night in a pinch and restaurant purchases count!

Saturday: Lunch Taco salads, Supper popcorn and Popsicles (no joke, that's what we had, no one was very hungry)

Sunday: lunch was cookout with green beans and baked beans, (we grilled up pork, beef, chicken and hot dogs for the week) supper was chicken fried rice with onion and pea pods from the garden.

Monday: Chicken, salad, some kind of veggie

Tuesday: pork chops or beef ribs, with veggies

Wednesday: take your pick of leftovers from the cookout, fruit (I am going out to dinner with a friend)

Thursday: pizza

Friday: Manwich on buns with cheese, french fries.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Pierce's 3 day sale

Another 3 day sale has been posted. The deals I see are Kraft barbecue sauce 3/$1.98 (use $2 free produce coupon when you buy two Kraft products from a tearpad), and baked beans that are 5/$2 (although they are the smaller cans)

I am not making my normal shopping trip until Monday so I don't go over for the All You grocery challenge. I had used some of last weeks money this week at Piggly Wiggly and now I'm in danger of going over the limit.

Stay tuned until then.

My link button is not working, so you will have to go to to see the ad.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Frugal Friday

I haven't had an extra time today, so I have decided to link you to a few other frugal Friday posts to get some great ideas on being frugal.

Check out FishMom here, She has some great ideas with 10 things you can make yourself to save money.

Another of my favorites is Gettingahead blog by Jennifer. She has some great uses for school supplies, and I agree! We go through tons of the stuff. What a great idea for a gift!

You can check out all the other ideas as well at

Bushnell Rebate

I heard about this deal the other day, and I was able to check our Walmart in Portage for availability.

If you purchase a Bushnell 5 or 7 day WeatherFX wireless forecaster, you can go here to print a rebate for $50. The beauty is they are on sale at Walmart right now for $50! They are located in the clearance section. There is a limit of 3 rebates per household and items must be purchased between 7/1/09 and 8/15/09.

Think Christmas gifts! I bought three so note to my sisters: dad is getting one, Dave is getting one, and the other is undecided. Ha ha, I beat you!

Target AMAZING deals!

Here it is...finally. I was so psyched with this trip. I found a ton of deals that I didn't know before getting there! I love it when that happens. If my total seems kind of high to you (it did to me too), remember I bought the large tote in the background, some clearance clothes for the kids, and several non-negotiable grocery items that I did not have coupons for. I will try to highlight only the deals for you below.

8 Olay 1 bar pack 0.97, $1 MQ (made a couple cents each)
4 Kashi single serve cereal $1 each, $1 target Q

10 All detergent trial size 1.12, $1 MQ each
6 Softsoap $2.04 (although one rang up at $1.73?), $2 target Q
1 Axe body wash $3.29, $2 MQ and $1 target Q
4 M & M packs $1.02 ea, $1/2 target Q
2 Alexia snacks $2.50 each, $1 MQ plus $0.75/2 target Q
2 Kashi bars $2.75 ea, $1 MQ plus $1/2 target Q
3 Quaker true delight bars $2.89, $1 MQ
2 Rotel canned tomatoes $1.02 each, BOGO MQ
2 Hunts diced tomatoes $0.87 each, BOGO MQ
Mission tortillas $1.99, $0.75 MQ
Pace Salsa $6.19, $4 IP from Pace game
4 Ragu spaghetti sauce $1.27, $0.60/2 MQ
4 Dole fruit cups $2.04 each, $1/2 IP
3 Bounty basic paper towels 0.99, 0.25 MQ plus 0.50 target Q
1 lb ground beef $1.79, $1 instant peelie Q from Mission tortillas
2 Schick Quattro razors $6.99 each, $4 MQ plus get a $5 gift card when you buy two

Ok, so my out of pocket total was $72.83, but my coupon savings was $89.11!!!!
Like I said, I got quite a few other things as well that we needed around the house, but it's definitely an amazing amount of saving. Needless to say I had to reorganize much of the kitchen to fit everything in. My stockpile keeps spilling into other areas of the house now!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Pierce's highlights

Sorry I am a day late on the ad highlights. I fell asleep in a child's bed trying to get them to sleep last night and didn't make it to the computer to finish it up.

Page 1
Bananas $0.38/lb

Watermelon, whole/seedless $2.98

Post cereal 5/$10, I believe there are $1/2 coupons

Pillsbury cake mix 10/$10, $1/2 MQ from tearpad awhile back

Page 2
Hormel pork butt roast or steaks $1.38/lb. I bought these a while back and they were delicious!

Surefine bacon $1.68- a good price for bacon I think.

Gold'n Plump whole chicken 2/$8

Kemps chocolate milk 1 gallon $1.99

Surefresh chunk cheese 10/$10

Minute maid frozen drinks 10/$10, cheap juice here

Totino's pizza rolls 10/$10, this is the cheapest these go for.

Page 3
Kraft Velveeta Shells/cheese 2/$3, this is the cheapest this typically gets

Chicken or Tuna Helper 10/$10, look out for $1/3 MQ

General mills cereal 5/$10, there are $1/3 MQ, or 0.50 or better each IP

Betty Crocker fudge brownies 10/$10

General Mills granola bars 4/$9, there are 0.50 and 0.35 MQ for the different varieties

Page 4
Dole lettuce 0.99/bag

cucumbers 5/$3

That is all I see folks. As always these are the items I feel are a good deal, but you may feel differently. Remember too that you do not need to buy in quantities of 10 to receive the 10/$10 price.

Piggly Wiggly deals

First off I'd like to apologize for not outlining my Piggly run prior to today. They (last week) were having their "11 for 10" sale which you buy 10 items at $1 each and get the 11th item free. Most of the coupons I had for their sale items were internet coupons and the Pig in Poynette and Pardeeville do not accept IP coupons. kids went overnight to Waunakee and the Pig there does accept IP coupons so I was able to make a last minute trip before the sale ended on Tuesday. Thanks to my sister for letting me make the run without kids!

I had coupons for everything except the avocado, sour cream and bread. My out of pocket for all of the above was $20.69, The coupon and ad savings was $48.04 with coupons alone adding up to $17.48. This was definitely worth my time, and I am well stocked now.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Mad/Crazy deals

Ok folks. I went to Piggly Wiggly and Target today and got a ton of awesome deals. While the Piggly Wiggly ad is now over, the Target deals are ongoing. I am working on the post tonight but I know it won't be done until tomorrow evening due to my schedule. But I am soooo excited to share it with you.

Tomorrow the next Pierce's ad comes out as well. I will review that as well. Have a great day!

Crafting supplies to us, school supplies to others

The first stop above was Kmart. The glue bottles and glue stick packs were 5/$1, the pens were $0.99 each (I had 2 $1 off coupons), and the white out pen was $0.99 (0.50 coupon). Total spent here on this trip with tax was $2.74. We go through a lot of this stuff because the kids are always wanting to do art projects. Now is stock up time!

The is my Walgreen's trip for the week. The Kleenex was $0.89 each ( $0.50/3 coupon), Pilot pens $1 (free after getting $1 register reward), Goldfish crackers $1 ($1 MQ), and scotch tape was $0.39 each (I bought 21 because I had 7 MQ for $1/3 making them $0.17 for 3 rolls!).
My total out of pocket was $5.00. I got a $1 register reward for my next purchase as well. My coupon/ad savings was $31.49!

If your kids like to do any art projects or have school supply needs, now is when you need to be watching the ads. Yes, I had to go to 2 different stores, but in Portage they are very close together and I was able to go while hubby had the kids~ bonus! Unfortunately, the kids saw all the tape. We can easily go through about a roll a day if they know it's in the house.

Why do kids want to tape everything???

Monday, July 20, 2009

Yummy Eats for the Week

Check out the email I got this weekend:

Culver's is celebrating 25 years of serving up ButterBurgers & Frozen Custard. Join our party for these specials July 20 - July 26 & Get Culverized!
Monday: $1 Short Shakes & Malts
Tuesday: $1 ButterBurgers
Wednesday: $1 Short Coolers
Thursday: $1 One Scoop Cake Cones
Friday: $1 Short Root Beer Floats
Saturday: $1 One Scoop Hot Fudge Sundaes
Sunday: $1 One Scoop Turtle Sundaes

Hope to see you the week of July 20!
The Culver's in Portage is definitely participating, but if you are elsewhere be sure to call ahead to make sure you get the deal.
MMMMMmmmmm, butterburgers........enough said.

Grocery deals at Pierce's and Walmart

So, I made a couple shopping trips this week, and I've got more to go. The picture above is from Pierce's, many of which are the deals I previously posted. I used coupons on the following:

Pop tarts 0.55 MQ
Hunt's Ketchup MQ to get free
David's sunflower seeds $1/2
Fisher sunflower seeds $1
Store coupon for produce 0.25

My total out of pocket for this trip was $26.03, with a coupon/ad savings of $19.58.

This is my trip to Walmart. Before you say anything, I already know I have a ton of Koolaid (and I do mean a ton), but I found another coupon for free sugar with 10 koolaid, and a coupon to get 2 additional packets free when you buy 10 so I had to! I will list the coupons below.

2 Juicy juice $2.38 each, $1/2 IP
6 Starkist tuna pouches $0.93 each, $1.50/3 MQ
2 Bumblebee chicken salad 0.98, $1/2 IP
2 Bumblebee tuna salad 0.98, $1/2 IP
Tide single load 0.97, $1 MQ
2 bags chocolate chips $2.68 each, 0.758/2 IP
12 Koolaid 0.20 each, MQ buy 10, get 2 free
Soy milk $2.73, $2 IP
2 Eggo Swirls $1.94, $1 IP
2 C & H sugar $0.94 each, $2 off when you buy 10 koolaid
Oreo cakester $2, $1 MQ

My before total was $33.48, but after coupons the final out of pocket was $18.52! If you are keeping track the total from the two trips was $44.55 so far for the week! I am making a run to Piggly Wiggly and Target on Tuesday as I have budget wiggle room to pick up some freebies there. I am looking forward to the deals. Piggly Wiggly especially, Tuesday is the last day for their 11 for 10 deal they have going on!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Hi! I know I'm a little behind on my posts, but bear with me. I got a bunch of shopping done today and will get those up on Monday I hope!

Meanwhile, here is the menu of the week...Enjoy.

Saturday: lunch at McDonald's, supper at a graduation party
Sunday: lunch frozen pizza, supper: baked chicken legs, green beans and cantaloupe
Monday: Mini meatloaf, salad
Tuesday: Culver $1 butterburgers, fruit
Wednesday: dinner at my mom's
Thursday: Pizza
Friday: Spaghetti?

As I look at this list, I realized that I am barely using anything from the cupboards this week. Sure does make the food budget stretch! The meatloaf is precooked from the freezer so that will be a really easy meal for Monday.

I did sign up for the All You grocery challenge taking place this month. The challenge is to spend $25 or less per person in your family each week. That would make our budget $125 per week which is a lot higher than what we normally spend. I think I'll be able to do it no problem!

Have a great week everyone!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Pierce's 3 day sale

Once again, don't forget the 3 day sale at Pierce's. Looks like a lot of ice cream treats on tap this weekend. Yum....
Click here to go to their site to check it out.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

2 Day Event at Walgreen's

Walgreen's has a new coupon out today, click here to get it!
It is for $5/$25 order today and Friday only. The 'catch' is that your purchase must equal $25 after your coupons.

This is a good time to get a few things that will earn you register rewards. That way you will maximize the amount that you will get back for your next purchase.

I haven't done this deal before, but if you have, please leave a comment after the post with your scenarios. Help us out! Also, check out an idea here from Mercedes at

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Pierce's highlights starting 7-16-09

Here we go, another week in ads. I was able to find several deals for you.

Dole bagged salad $0.98: this is the cheapest I have seen it.

Peaches or Nectarines 0.98/lb: cheaper than even the last two weeks I've bought it ARGH!

Berries 5.6-8oz 3/$4.98: This is a pretty average deal

Yoplait yogurt 10/$5, there is a MQ for 40c/6

Top Sirloin Steaks $3.98/lb

Lay's potato chips 5/$10, $1/2 MQ from All You magazine last month

Dean's twin pops 10/$10

Pepsi or Coke 2L bottles 10/$10

Angus beef rump roast (boneless) $2.38/lb

Boneless Hormel pork loin chops or roast $2.48/lb

Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh shaved lunch meat $2.79: look for $1 IP if you still have them!

Gold'n Plump chicken thighs or drumsticks 2/$4: this is a good price, but check to see if you have the $1 MQ that are out there. I don't have them, but I think I used them already.

Blue Bunny champ! ice cream cones $3.49: there are $1 MQ

Old Orchard Juice or Healthy Balance juice 2/$4: there are $1/1 MQ for healthy balance, and $1/2 MQ for regular old orchard

Poptarts $1.78, 0.55 MQ

Surefine pasta $0.88

Surefine canned fruit 4/$5: it's a good stock up price but it is in heavy syrup

Hefty One zip bags 2/$4: there are 20c and 40c MQ out there

Right Guard anti-perspirant/deodorant 2/$4: look for your $1 MQ to get cheap deodorant.

Washington apples 2/$5: I think anything under 0.99/lb is a good price right now

Mann's sugar snap or snow peas 2/$4

That is all folks. I strive to do my best on the coupon match-ups, but be sure to check your coupon stash in case I missed any. Good luck.

Blogger break

Just wanted to let you all know that I am going out of town for 2 days and blogging will be either nonexistent or very light at best. I will be back in the game on Saturday where I will review my shopping trip for the week!

Thanks for your understanding.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


Well, it's another week of Walgreen's deals that aren't. I didn't find anything in their ad that made me want to run right over there. There are several register reward deals out there. Please check out the post by Mercedes here. I think she does the most thorough post on the Walgreen's ads.
I hope next week will be better. The school supplies are coming out in full force and it will be time to snatch them up!
Let me know if you have found any worthy Walgreen's deals this week.

Kwik Trip savings coupons

I discovered this program about a week ago, and a reader also alerted me this week. If you have a Kwik Trip in your area, it is worth checking it out.

Go to the website here and sign up for their email coupon program. Immediately you will likely be eligible for a coupon. If you take a survey, you will also get another coupon. When I signed up I got a coupon for $2 off a Cheese Mountain Pizza, and I also got one for a free slice of pizza.

You can also download a form to mail in for the kids to get a card which will give them a free donut, cookie, apple, orange, pear, or bagel free when mom or dad buy a pint or more of Nature's Touch milk.

Sounds like a good deal to me, and a possible freebie for the kids!

I also wanted to pass along that Kwik Trip also has a dozen eggs on sale now for 79 cents!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Yesterday the hubby got the charcoal grill going. We typically cook up a little of everything and eat from it all week, and this week will be no exception. We cooked chicken, hot dogs, brats, hamburgers and pork chops. Hubby and I pack lunches for work, so we also eat these for lunches.

SATURDAY: sandwiches or hot dogs for lunch, homemade pizza and fresh fruit smoothies for supper.

SUNDAY: Your choice of grilled meat above, green beans and pea pods for lunch. More grilled meat choice and fresh berries for dinner.

MONDAY: salads with cold chicken or steak

TUESDAY: Chicken with rice, green beans

WEDNESDAY: Hamburgers, cold veggies, french fries

THURSDAY: leftovers for Hubby, kids and I will eat at my sister's house

FRIDAY: Planning to go to another sister's house for dinner.

So, our week is going to be very easy for meals as we will be visiting family for some of the time.

Have a great week everyone!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

My not-so-frugal but totally worth it weekend purchase

I went berry picking over the weekend. Those are black raspberries, red raspberries, blueberries and also some pea pods. The place I went was not cheap, but I couldn't resist having the fresh berries in the house. Of the above, I think we only have 1 1/2 pints left! I have some big time 'fruit monsters' in this house. Of course, I have helped out too!

Don't forget the 3 day sales at Pierce's

I always seem to forget about the Pierce's 3 day sales lately. The sale items are not a part of their regular ad, but they do post it on their website on Thursdays or Fridays. You can click here to go right to that page. The sale is good until Monday July 13th. I have signed up for the email updates, and therefore they will send it right to me via email so I don't forget!
  • 4 Bic Comfort 3 shavers $2 (from regular sale ad), $2 MQ = free
  • 7 CountryTime lemonade mixes $1.50 each (a good price on its own), I had $1 MQ for each = 0.50 each
  • 2 Surefine syrup 2/$3
  • 2 Pizza crust mix $0.85
  • 1 can Pizza sauce $1.33

All told I spent $10.55 out of pocket, with a coupon/ad savings of $40.65. I have been waiting for a good sale on those CountryTime ever since I found those $1 coupons. Had I used those coupons right away, I could have easily spent a lot more as they are often $2 to $3.50 each without a sale. As a bonus, even the raspberry and strawberry flavors were on sale!

On my main Pierce's shopping trip for the week, I stayed mostly to buying from the ad. I didn't take a picture of it as I had a sick child to tend to as soon as I got home. But I spent $49.06 out of pocket during that trip with a coupon/ad savings of $58.21. Happily $17.90 of that was just in coupons!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Walmart for cakesters

Somebody bought all the cakesters at Kmart this week, and with the packing of the school lunches looming over my head, I decided to check out Walmart. Indeed the cakesters were on sale, and I snatched up a couple other items I had coupons for.
  • 6 Cakesters $2 each, used $1 MQ for each as well
  • 9 Tide single load size (in trial size section) 0.97 each, used $1 MQ each
  • Fiber $7.24 no coupon
  • Ranch fries $2.48, got coupon in mail to try for free
  • 2 Crunch and Munch $1 each, $1/2 MQ

Subtotal for all of the above was $32.45, and after coupons I paid $15.23 for everything. The cashier did override the coupon for the Tide down to 0.97 each so I did not make anything on those. It is helpful to check if there is a size limit when looking at coupons. The Tide coupons that came out last weekend did not exclude a trial size bottle.

We have a front load washing machine and what we do is either use 1/2 to 1/3 less soap than a normal load, or we water down the soap we have. (before you correct me, the salesman for this appliance reassured me this was ok if I wasn't buying the HE soap). Anywho, we will open a few of these babies and add water. We have been doing this for a looooong time and our clothes clean up and smell just fine thank you very much. Another way to be frugal!

Last and final trip for Kmart doubles

Well, I thought I had been done at Kmart, but then I heard about the clearance toys. It turns out I was able to find a few things. It's true that you do need to scour the aisles to find them. I got a jump start on birthday gifts since about 80-90% of my extended family has birthdays in August or after. Christmas really creeps up after all those birthdays!
  • Matchbox Space shuttle original price $42.99, clearance $10.50 (Santa seriously had one of these in 'his' cart last Christmas but decided to put it back, I was so glad to find it on sale!)
  • Boggle game original $14.99, paid $5.50
  • Operation Hulk original $19.99, paid $7.50
  • Princess checkers originally $6.99, paid $1.75
  • Paint kit (not on sale) $5.99
  • Reach toothbrushes $2.75, used $2 IP
  • 2 Sunny Delight drink $1.39, used $0.55 IP

I was able to use the $5 off a $20 toy purchase coupon, and I also used my $10 off a $10 purchase coupon I got earlier in the week. After that, my out of pocket total was $16.60 for all of the above. Which is pretty cool.

I am so glad I went back for the toys. The regular price of the toys alone was $84.96 which I would have paid last year at this time before I started couponing. I am so thankful that I started using the coupons and have been able to use my finances in a better way!

I hope everyone enjoyed a productive week at Kmart during their doubles event. I hope they do it again soon. I think once a month would be great!


Did you see the Staples ad that starts tomorrow? There are several back to school items that will be 1 cent and many for $1. Be sure to check it all out here.
Quantities are limited, so you may want to head in early.

Friday, July 10, 2009


Had a great tip from a couple readers today. It seems that Walmart has watermelons on sale for $1 today. If you are out and about be sure to head over there. That is some very inexpensive fruit for the weekend.

If you have a choice between the oblong and circular melons, sources are telling me to choose the round ones. The others are full of seeds and not as good.

Thanks for the tips!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Abbreviation roundup

I have had more questions about the abbreviation I use so I want to post my prior link here. The link will list the ones I use and explain what they mean.

Frugal Friday

Another new feature for the week.....
Frugal Fridays

I'll admit that I am 'borrowing' this idea from another blog, but it is such a great idea. I think it is a good system to keep me in check and let others know what I am doing each week to be frugal and save money for the family. So here's what I've done in the last week to be frugal.
  • Gave haircuts to husband and 3 kids. Saved at least $40 doing it myself.

  • Used reusable grocery bags for shopping.

  • I'm only running my dishwasher about every other day in order for it to be a full load.

  • Shopped double coupon deals at Kmart

  • Thanks to Mother Nature, did not run the air conditioner this week. We made it work with fans to bring in cool air at night.

  • Been trying to combine errands to do after work to save on gas/trips around town.

  • Recycled some old toys to other people that could use them.

  • Checked out movies at the library for free.

That is all I could think of for this week. The point of this post is not to brag about what I am doing but to give you all ideas of things you could do to save around your home. They may not all work for you. One idea I read on a blog was to save electricity by hanging laundry on a clothesline to dry. What a great idea. Except I don't have a clothesline, nor do I feel it is worth my time with the amount of laundry my family generates. In addition, my hubby helps with laundry and I know he would not do it. It is a sacrifice I am willing to make in order to get him to help with the wash. So, while it is a great idea, it doesn't work for my family.

Please leave a post and let me know ways you are frugal around your house. I will share the ideas with everyone and we can all learn!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Pierce's highlights

Here are the Pierce's deals as I see them for the ad starting on Thursday 7-9-09. Keep in mind I am only highlighting the items I think are a good deal now that I am in stockpiling mode. To view their full ad check out their website here.

Page 1
Braeburn apples $0.88/lb
Cantaloupe $1.48 each
10/$10 items: Hormel sausages, turkey bologna (stock up for lunches this fall), Surfresh shredded cheese, Kraft pasta sides (I couldn't find any coupons but I think they may be out there), Bernatello's pizza (think snack or dinner for kids), and Kemps 1/2 gallon milk.
Page 2
Hormel Pork sirloin roast or chops $1.68/lb, $1 MQ (get a small package and it will be almost free)
Gold'n Plump Chicken breasts 2/$9, $1 MQ
Cod or Haddock Fillets $5.99/lb, this is about the cheapest I ever see it.
Surefresh biscuits 2/0.88
Kemps Ittibitz or singles ice cream $0.88, BOGO coupons out there!
Banquet chicken nuggets 2/$4, $1 MQ
Page 3
Surefine syrup/pancake mix 2/$3
Bic comfort 3 shavers 2/$4, $2 MQ makes this free
Page 4
Hydroponic Tomatoes $1.28/lb
Green onions 2/0.88
Green giant baby carrots 0.98
Dole celery 0.98
Dole salad mix 3/$4.98
That is what I see for deals. Happy shopping this week.

Another trip to Kmart

Well, I went back with my sister and found a couple deals I missed. Plus, I got some new coupons in the mail that were perfect to use at Kmart. Here is the breakdown:
  • 4 boxes General Mills cereal 4/$6. I used the following coupons: 2-0.55 IP for plain cheerios which made them 0.40 each, and a $1/2 IP which made the other two boxes 50 cents each which is all way below my target price for cereal!
  • 2 Olay body wash $6.49. $2 MQ from last Sunday, and there was a bonus Kmart incentive coupon on a tear pad next to the Olay for $2 off. So I got them for $0.49 each.
  • 3 Bic Soleil razors $5.29 each, $2 MQ made them $1.29 each
  • 2 Ziplock baggies 2/$4, used $1.25/2 MQ from my sister, made them 0.75 each
  • 2 Cascade powder boxes $3.49 each. $1 MQ on each, plus again found an in store incentive coupon for additional $1 off, made these 0.49 each
  • 4 Liquid Cascade $4.99 each, $1 MQ and $1 Kmart incentive on each = $1.99 each
  • 4 Hunts pudding packs $1 each, $1/2 MQ = free
  • 4 Pringles $1.50 each, $1/2 MQ made them 0.50 each
  • 1 Peter Pan peanut butter $2.29 each, $1 MQ = 0.29

I was also able to get my $9.11 owed to me from doubling mistakes on Sunday. My before total was around $86, and after the above credit and coupons I pad only $17.82!! The Cascade deal alone made it worth my while to go there!

The total bummer was that I forgot to use my $5/25 purchase and they wouldn't give it to me without deleting the entire cart and starting over. After I had taken over 20 minutes in line! Plus my sister and I had all the kids with us too. So I gave up that fight. But on a lighter note, I got a save $10 on a $10 purchase coupon AND a $3 reward towards my next purchase. Hmmmm. I will definitely be going back. How can I convince my hubby that I need to return? Plus I hear the toy section has a ton of clearance stuff......

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Return to Pierce's

In my defense, I did forget to buy milk last weekend so I had to make another trip back. And of course I took advantage of the sale!
  • 12 packs of Oscar Mayer hot dogs 0.98 each, $1/2 MQ (means I got them for 48 cents each)
  • 2 Country Time lemonade $2 each, $1 MQ from tear pad in store a couple weeks ago
  • Eggs $1.19
  • Bread $1.29
  • Milk $2.24

So my total out of pocket was $12.70, and my coupons/sale prices together were $38.74. And if I buy any more hot dogs my freezer will revolt. I think I've got enough for the year. Of course, this is the time of year when they are cheapest so it's a good time to stock up HINT HINT.

Still on track with the budget, almost down to the penny for the rest of the month.

Walgreen's for the week

I will not be making a run to Walgreen's this week and won't be covering their deals. I just don't see anything to make it worth my while. Instead click here to see for a thorough ad matchup. She puts the match up on her blog every Saturday, so check it out!

But stay tuned for next week, a big ad is coming out with the start of back to school sales!

Monday, July 6, 2009

My (first?) Kmart doubles trip

Here's my load from the double coupon trip. I will outline what I got and the price after coupon. Remember that the coupons $2 and under are doubled!
  • See and Say toy $6.99 (these first four items are a part of a deal going on now at Kmart where you buy $20 in toys and get $5 off) = 1.99
  • Hot wheels car $1= $1
  • 2 Pictureka card games $5.99 each, $5 IP each = 0.99 each
  • 1 Duracell batteries $4.19. $1 MQ = $2.19
  • 2 Edge shave gel $1.99 each, $1 IP = free
  • 2 Skintimate shave gel $1.99, $1 IP = free
  • 1 clearance razor $4.74, $2 MQ= 0.74
  • 2 Bic Soleil disposable razor packs $5.29, $2 MQ = 1.29 each
  • 3 Johnson's buddies soap 0.99 each, $2.50 Kmart coupon = 0.49 total for 3
  • 2 Sparkle paper towels $2.99 each and 2 Angel soft tissue $1.45 each, $2 IP when you buy 1 sparkle towel and 1 angel soft = 0.88 total for all 4 things
  • 1 Glade candle refill $3.49, "buy 1 candle get refills free" MQ = free
  • Glade candle $3.29, $1.50 MQ (found inside the tin!) = 0.29
  • 2 fun size bags Butterfingers $2.99 each, $1 IP = 0.99 each
  • 2 Hershey 6 pack full bars $2.50 each, $1/2 MQ = $1.50 each
  • 2 Lays potato chips $2.50 each, $1/2 MQ (from All You magazine) = $1.50 each
  • 2 Pringles chips $1.50 each, $1/2 MQ = 0.50 each
  • Lipton cold brew tea bags $1.99, 0.50 MQ = 0.99
  • HoneyMaid graham crackers $2.50, $1 "when you buy Hersheys and marshmallows" MQ = 0.50
  • Oreo Cakesters $3, $1/2 MQ = $1
  • 1 Peter pan peanut butter $2.29, $1 MQ = 0.29
  • 3 Sunny Delight $1.39 each, 0.55 MQ = 0.29 each
  • 1 Marshmallows $1.79 no coupon

My "before" total was $108.10, but after doubled coupons I paid $37.06 which is a savings of 66%! But here is where it gets even better. I was going through my receipt and several coupons didn't double right. I matched them up to the items and it turns out the store owes me an additional $9.11! So my total after I go back for that money will be $27.95!!!

Always check your receipt. Anytime I see that the clerk has to 'choose' an item on the screen to match to the product, if they don't choose the exact item the coupon won't double correctly. I hate that I can't see their registers when I am checking out, but they have always been great about giving me my money back. I guess I will plan my next trip to double coupons since I will be getting money back.

I've heard already from Tiffany who had a great run at is everyone else doing? Leave me a message.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

New feature !!!

Welcome to Menu Plan Monday!
I've been wanting to start this feature for awhile in order to show what we are eating each week. Basically, I want you all to know that we don't just eat hot dogs and macaroni and cheese everyday!
Here's the 'givens' regarding this.
  • Breakfast is always cereal or toast or whatever you can find so I won't be posting our breakfast.
  • Lunch is one of the following: hot dogs, mac 'n cheese, spaghettio's, sandwiches, or leftovers with fruit and/or chips. It is a given that I have these things in the house. That way, I don't have to think too much about lunch either.
  • Therefore, I will only post our dinner menu! It is also a given that I have rice, potatoes and frozen veggies on hand. I buy these in bulk so it is always ready as a last minute addition

We keep things pretty simple around here. I don't spend too much time making anything fancy as my kids will just refuse to try it and not eat. As long as it counts as veggies and protein we go with it. That being said here is what is on our menu for this week. (My weeks will include the previous weekend as that is how I shop)

Saturday: cookout with family for lunch and dinner

Sunday: Pork chops and corn on the cob

Monday: Mini-meatloaf, salad, maybe potatoes

Tuesday: chicken, rice, salad

Wednesday: Breakfast for dinner

Thursday: Pizza

Friday: Chicken nuggets, fries, veggie

That's it! I often vary how I cook something from week to week (i.e. baked chicken vs. on the grill).

Menu planning is a very important step to saving money. If you have a plan on paper, you know what meat to pull out and when to start cooking it. That way you can avoid the fast food trap. We used to get to dinner time and then start to think about what to cook. No wonder we would give up and order takeout so often.

I also use the sale ads to plan meals for the next week based on what is on sale. I don't use many frozen veggies this time of year because produce is so plentiful right now.

How do you plan your meals? Would this type of system work to help you save money? Please leave your comments or email me with questions. I'd love to hear from you!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Snacks at Walmart

So, I hear these Eggo Bake Shop cinnamon flavored things are delicious. I'd thought we'd give it a try to use the coupons.
  • Eggo Bake shop $1.94 each, $1 IP
  • Oreo Cakesters $2, $1 MQ
  • Hi-C juice boxes 1.97 (for a cookout we're going to)

My total spent was $8.78, with a coupon savings of $7. Saving almost 1/2 at Walmart is actually pretty good.

I don't buy a lot at Walmart. If I use coupons and wait for sales, I can do better on prices most times at Pierce's or Target (if I am running to Madison). I don't like how big and spread out the shopping is at Walmart so I avoid it if I can. For non food items, I can find it fairly close in price at Kmart as well.

Where do you find the best deals? Leave a comment and let me know.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Announcing Kmart doubles

It is official in case you didn't get the ad yet. Kmart in Portage is starting double coupon week on Sunday. Here's the details. You can only use one coupon per item. Coupons up to a $2 value will double. A maximum of 10 doubled coupons per person per day, and you may only buy 4 of a like item. Your before coupon total must also be at least $25.

That said, often does a coupon match up for Kmart so you can check there for deal ideas. That is my main source for Kmart. A word of warning though, she lives in South Carolina so the prices at her Kmart may be different. Use your best judgement!

Happy shopping. See you there!

Weekend shopping on Friday instead

Hi everyone. I headed over to Pierce's today to pick up a few things that were on sale. I'll list the sale items below...
  • Lay's chips BOGO $3.99
  • Ground chuck $1.78/lb (I buy around 9 pounds each time it gets this cheap and divide into 1lb baggies and freeze)
  • Hunt's chocolate pudding $1.00, MQ for $1/3
  • Oscar Mayer hot dogs $0.98 each limit 4. $1/2 MQ. I will be going back several times to use all my coupons at this price!
  • Sweet corn 10/$3
  • Supreme baby carrots $0.99
  • Peaches $1.28/lb
  • Organic raspberries $2.50
  • Organic blueberries $2.50
  • Cantaloupe $2.00
  • Dole lettuce bags$1.50
  • Bush Beans $1.25, $1/2 IP

As you can see I got a couple other items too for a cookout we are going to this weekend. All told, my out of pocket total was $72.35, with a coupon/ad savings of $43.71. I am still running at budget for the month in groceries.

How did you do? Leave me a comment and let me know!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Daily Register Story

Here is the direct link to the story in today's newspaper featuring yours truly. Click on the link to go directly to the site.


Local: PORTAGE'S COUPON QUEEN: 30 mac and cheeses for 40 cents total? No problem - The Portage Daily Register, -

Posted using ShareThis

Welcome new readers!

Hi everyone! If you saw me in the newspaper today...Welcome! I am just your average mom trying to save a few bucks on groceries that I have to buy anyways. Stop back and browse around. I try to include tips and sale alerts for stores that are local to Portage. If you ever have any comments or questions, please feel free to leave me a comment on this website.

I have received a couple questions already today that I would like to address.

1. Where do you get your coupons? I get the weekend newspapers for the bulk of my coupons. My neighbor, a friend and my dad also save their inserts for me too. I also print coupons online. Look to the section on this site that lists the websites I follow. That is where I find most of the links to print coupons online. I also just started getting the "All You" magazine which contains many coupons in each issue.

2. Can you use more than one coupon per item? Typically no, you can only use one coupon per item purchased. There are a couple exceptions to the rule. If the store has their own "in store" coupon, you can usually 'stack' it with a manufacture coupon to maximize savings. For example: if you buy Ritz crackers at Pierce's and use a $1 manufacture coupon (MQ), plus you have a 25 cent Pierce's coupon from a previous visit to the store you can use them both.

That is all the questions I've had so far and I hope I've answered them for you. I am open to suggestions to make this a website/blog for all to use and benefit from. If you have any ideas, or would like a certain area covered, let me know and I'll do my best! I will warn you that there will be typos and mistakes, after all I am human and a busy human at that.

Welcome aboard!