Thursday, April 30, 2009

Another FREE Card from Hallmark!!

Have you ordered your free Mother's Day card from Hallmark? I just did today, it was really simple & I got to put a total of 9 pictures on it, one of which is a 5x7!

Well, there is yet another code for a free paper 5x7 folded card. Click here to begin creating your card, and then be sure to use code APRILCARD. The card is completely free, they even pay the shipping!

If you missed the first code, it is CARD4MOM, use both codes (you will probably need to do seperate transactions) to get two cards mailed for free!

Home Depot Kids Clinic on Saturday

This Saturday, kids can make a wheel barrow at the Home Depot Kids Clinic from 9:00 a.m. - Noon.
What a cute little planter this will make for a Mother's Day gift!

4 Great Freebies from Unilever

All 4 samples are available at Vive Mejor, a site owned by Unilever & are available to all US residents.

Click here for a free sample of Degree Women.

Click here for a free sample of Caress.

Click here for your sample of Pond's.

Click here for a free sample of Hellmann's Light.

Check your CVS - Deodorant 75% off

Thanks to the reader who posted the comment about finding Right Guard deodorant at 75% off.

If you missed the comment - They found Right Guard regularly priced at $4.49 at 75% off, making it $1.12. I checked out my local CVS & not only found Right Guard at 75% off, but they also had Lady Speed Stick 2 pk., Dove, Old Spice, & Brut at 75% off. All of these were less than $1.30 at 75% off. Use with any of the following coupons to get free or almost free deodorant!

Right Guard - $1 off 2 from 3/8 Smart Source
Speed Stick or Lady Speed Stick - .75 off 2 from 3/29 Smart Source
Dove - $1.25 off from 3/15 Red Plum
$1 off from 3/15 Red Plum
Old Spice - $1 off 2 from 3/15 P&G insert

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Yard Sales - Making yours a success

It is getting that time of year, Yard Sale Season! I have found some great deals at yard sales & made some decent money at them as well. Holding a yard sale can be a lot of work, but a great way to earn some extra cash! Here are some tips to make your yard sale a success!

  • Having a multi-family yard sale can cut down on some of your work, by having extra helpers.
  • Talk with your neighbors & organize a neighborhood wide yard sale. This brings more people out.
  • Advertise well. Advertise in your local paper, being sure to list the "bigger items" that you will have for sale. If you are selling clothes of any sort, be sure to list size ranges available. Also make signs to post, however, make them simple. Only list Date, Time & Place, this makes it much more noticeable & easier to read.
  • I generally like to have my yard sales on Friday afternoon & Sat. mornings. I have had great luck with a Friday afternoon & if it is raining one of those days, no biggie.
  • I also like to have my sales from 7:30 a.m. - 11:00 p.m. on Saturday mornings. Most sales start at 8:00, so I get the earlier crowd. Also, buyers are generally done by 11:00, I've never had many sales after 11:00.
  • Expect the early birds, they get the worms! If you are absolutely opposed to early birds, be sure to say "No early birds" in your ad. However, I say if you are willing to dig through my box to give me money, who am I to turn you away? Some even help put stuff out.
  • I also prepare for my yard sales all year long. I have a table in my basement that I place anything I want to get rid of on. Then when I have some extra time, I will go mark whatever is on the table. I bind all clothing sets together, you can do this by using safety pins, rubber bands, or yarn. I try to keep it separated between spring/summer & fall/winter clothing. I don't even mess with putting out fall/winter stuff in the beginning of spring.
  • Be sure to mark everything clearly. Put tags in a easy to find spot. Generally, if I am at a yard sale & something that I want isn't marked, I usually just walk away. Many people are not comfortable with the "name a price". It is also easier to price everything at .25 or above. Change can be tricky when you have things priced at .05 or .10. If you feel .25 is to much for something, put it in a box marked FREE.
  • When pricing items, remember that people don't care what you paid for it in the first place, they only know what they are willing to pay. We often let sentiment get in the way of our pricing as well. Be sure to take condition & style into consideration when pricing.
  • If something is stained, throw it away! Very few people are willing to pay money for something with stains. And if that is what they notice from the get go, they will not look through your other stuff to get to the unstained things.
  • Be sure to place some of your larger items closer to the curb, it will attract the people just driving by.
  • If you are selling something electrical, be sure to put on the tag if it works. Better yet, have a stash of batteries or an extension cord so that customers can try it out themselves.
  • Clean your toys! They are much likelier to sell.
  • Group several small toys together in a bag & mark it $1, I always sell out of these!
  • Be willing to bargain. For larger items, such as furniture, always price $5-$20 more than what your bottom dollar is, that way you have some room to bargain. If there is something that you prefer not to bargain with, just tell them "I think it's worth that price, if it hasn't sold by late morning, I may be willing to go down."
  • Keep things neat. Straighten rummaged through clothing, & continually move things around to fill empty spots.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Free Dog Toy from Mighty Dog

Sign your dog up at Mighty Dog Nation to receive a free citizen kit & dog toy!

A few freebies

If you have any Leapfrog toys, click here to receive a free Learning Rythms Music CD for ages 0-3. It is easy to sign up & you can choose to download the 15 songs, or have a CD mailed to you. Offer does not apply to Tag™, Tag Jr, Leapster®, Leapster2, Didj™, FLY™ and Crammer™ learning systems, books and games.

Click here for a free sample of Clairol Advanced Gray Solution.

For a free sample of TENA, click here.

Send a Free Mother's Day Card

Hallmark will send mom a 5x7 paper card completely free! They'll even pay the postage! Click here to create your card, you can even use a photo. Just use promo code CARD4MOM at checkout. You must order by May 1st to ensure delivery by Mother's Day.

Here is an earlier post on getting Mother's Day cards at a great price, in case you missed it.

Several companies are offering mother's day photo cards for only the cost of shipping. What a great, personalized way to say Happy Mother's Day!
Scrapblog has 18 predesigned cards to choose from. Customize the card to your liking, they will print it for free & ship it right to the recipient of your choice! You pay only $1 to cover shipping.
Kodak is giving away 1 million photo cards in their MOM-A-THON promotion. Your free card is valued up to $2.49, you just pay .99 shipping. Be sure to enter FREECARD at checkout to redeem.

Tasty Tuesday - Freezing Foods

One great way to save money is by using your freezer. Stock up when things are on sale & freeze them. It is also a great time saver to prepare multiple meals to pull out of the freezer.

You can freeze just about everything. One rule I was always told, is that if you can buy it in the store frozen, it is okay to freeze, makes sense to me. However, there are a few things that just don't freeze well.

A few things I have heard never to freeze are eggs in the shell or canned meat. However, you may freeze eggs out of the shell, such as scrambled eggs. And once the meat is taken out of the can, it is okay to freeze.

In my experience, mayonaise based foods do not freeze well. Bananas can be frozen, but will be mush when thawed (this is just fine if you are baking with them).

I have successfully frozen-

Meat - both cooked & raw
fruits - I usually cut them up & freeze them in single portioned sizes.
veggies - both cooked & raw
Mashed potatoes - I have heard of others not having luck with mashed potatoes, but I've not had a problem, I freeze my garlic mashed potatoes that contain cream cheese & sour cream, I just put them in the oven for 1/2 an hour before serving, they taste just like they were freshly made.
bread - I like to buy my bread at the Bakery Outlet, I stock up & freeze.
homemade pancakes - I let them fully cool before freezing
homemade muffins
meatloaf - I premix it & freeze it uncooked.
sauces - spaghetti & fettucine
cooked noodles
cheeses - I have only froze shredded.
Homemade bread & pizza dough

I freeze almost everything in freezer bags. Alot of things I will freeze in the snack sized bags & then place several of them in a gallon sized freezer bag.

Do you have an experience with something that you have frozen? Please share it!

Monday, April 27, 2009

80% off at

Get a $25 gift certificate for only $2 at! Use code LUCKY at checkout. What a great opportunity to stock up on date nights & gifts, don't forget about Mother's Day & Father's Day coming up! Code expires April 30th.

Get a FREE piece of chicken at KFC today!

Participating KFC's are handing out one free piece of their new grilled chicken to each customer today, no coupon needed. Stop by to get yours!

Walgreens Deals 4/26-5/2

Campbell's soup
Sale price - .59 with in-ad coupon, Buy 2
Use - $1/2 printable coupon
.09 each after coupons

Sale price - $3.99
Use - $3 off coupon from 3/15 Red Plum
.99 after coupon

Nivea Body Wash
You pay - $4.99
You earn - $4.99 RRs
Use - $1 off coupon from 4/19 or 4/30 Red Plum
Free plus $1 in overage after coupon and RRs

Rembrandt Toothpaste or Mouthwash
You pay - $5.99
You earn - $5.99 RRs
Free after RRs

Bayer Quick Release Crystals
You pay - $2.49
You earn - $2.49 RRs
Free after RRs

You pay - $4 each
You earn $4 RRs when you buy 2
Use - 2 $2 off coupons from the 2/8 Red Plum insert or $2 off printable
Free after coupons and RRs

Suave hair care products
Sale price - 3 for $5
You earn $2 RRs when you buy 3
Use - $1.75/3 coupon from 3/1 Red Plum
.42 each after coupon and RRs

Schick Quattro for Women razor
You pay - $8.99
You earn - $3 RRs
Use $4 off coupon from 3/22 Smart Source
$1.99 after coupon and RRs

Got2B Hair Products
Sale price - 2/$10
You earn - $5 RRs when you buy 2
Use - 2-$2 off printable
.50 each after coupons and RRs

Rimmel Sexy Curves Mascara
Sale price - BOGO FREE
Use - BOGO Free Rimmel Sexy Curves mascara coupon from April ALL YOU
2 FREE after coupon

New to Walgreens deals? Be sure to check out my post here.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

CVS Deals 4/26-5/2

Garneir Fructis Shampoo, Conditioner or Styler (limit 1)
Sale Price - $2.99
You earn - $2 ECBs
Use - $1 off coupon from 1/14 Red Plum
Free after ECBs & coupon

Sale Price - .88
Use - .25 off coupon from 4/26 Smart Source
.63 after coupon

Spend $10 on TRESemme products get $5 ECBs
Buy 3 shampoos or conditioners at $3.49 each (some CVS have these on sale 3 for $10)
Use - 3 - $1 off printables
.82 or .67 each after ECBs & coupons

Mennen Deodorant (Speed Stick or Lady Speed Stick)
Sale price - 2/$5
You earn - $3 ECBs when you buy 2
Use - .75 off coupon from 4/26 Smart Source
.25 each after ECBs & coupons

Schick Intuition Plus razor
Sale price - $8.99
You earn - $4 ECBs
Use - $4 off coupon from 3/22 or 4/26 Smart Source
.99 after ECBs & coupon

Crest Cavity, Tartar or Baking Soda & Peroxide toothpaste or Oral B indicator toothbrush
Sale price - $1.99
You earn - $1 ECB
Use - .75 off coupon from 4/5 P&G insert
.24 after ECBs & coupon

Bayer Breeze2 glucose monitor
You pay - $14.99
You earn - $14.99 ECBs
Free after ECBs

Sale Price - $1
Use - $1 off coupon from 3/15 Smart Source
Free after coupon

Friday, April 24, 2009

Free Subscription to Organic Gardening

To receive your free subscription, sign up with the Stonyfield Farm Community, then visit here to sign up for your subscription.

Lowe's Build & Grow Clinic this Saturday

Kids can build this hang glider tomorrow, Saturday, April 25th from 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. for free. Visit Lowes Build and Grow for details.

Free copy of Confessions of a Shopaholic

Sign your friend up to receive a free copy of Confessions of a Shopaholic. It doesn't ask for your name, so I suppose you could sign yourself up!
Click here to send your friend a copy!

Some great freebies!

Click here for a free sample of Dove go fresh Anti-perspirant & Deodorant from CostCo (a membership number is not required to receive this sample).

Click here for a free Schick Quattro Titanium Trimmer.

For a free sample of NIVEA Touch of Happiness Body Wash click here.

Click here for a free sample of Arm & Hammer toothpaste.

Huggies - Enjoy the Ride Rewards Program

Huggies has announced a new rewards program. You earn points by purchasing products and by taking polls, viewing videos, & visiting different areas of their site. You can then redeem points to enter sweepstakes for prizes, for as little as 1 point.

You will receive 10 pts. just for signing up, then use code TKHNF-RLPLS-TRPGB for an additional 5 pts. After you use the previous code, they also give you the opportunity to print off a $2 coupon. Click here to sign up.

Free 1 year subscription to Metropolitan Home

Click here for a 1 year subscription to Metropolitan Home free from Mercury Magazines.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Vacation Savings - inexpensive weekend vacations

Last week I shared how I always use Priceline when we stay in a hotel & a great resource on using Priceline, if you missed it be sure to check it out here.

I love staying in a hotel. That is a special treat to me! I will never forget the year that for my birthday, my aunt took me to stay at Embassy Suites, we just watched movies & ordered room service. And as I've grown, there is something about not having to take out the trash or make your bed! Therefore, for me, just staying in a hotel is a vacation. However, my kids, they need something to do.

We live less than an hour from St. Louis & there is a ton of free stuff to do in St. Louis. We will get a 4 star hotel using Priceline for around $50 a night & just spend our weekend visiting the free sites in St. Louis. We alot of times try to find the "non-touristy" free things as well. And we of course, order room service! One way to save on room service, order from the kids menu. The kids meals are generally huge. At one hotel, we ordered a $1 piece of chocolate cake for a late night snack, it was the biggest piece of cake I've ever seen, you can be sure every time we go back to that hotel, it is always on our order!

Staycations are also hugely popular right now. Get a hotel room in your own hometown & visit the sites that you never visit.

Go just a town or 2 over, get a hotel room at a hotel with an indoor pool. Order pizza to your room & spend the evening enjoying the pool.

The best thing about a weekend vacation close to home is that there is very little planning & packing!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

9 Free Audiobooks from Barnes & Noble

Choose up to 9 free Audiobooks from Barnes & Noble.

Note - When you first put them into your cart, it will show them at .01 each. Once you go through the checkout process, they are completely FREE! I have heard of a few people getting errors when choosing credit card during the checkout process, I chose PayPal & had no trouble at all. You will then get an email with instructions on how to download.

The Audiobooks you can choose from are -

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
Merrano of the Dry Country
Ysrael: An Unabridged Story from Drown
Truth or Dare: from The Day I Ate Whatever I Wanted
Fathers: An Unabridged Story from The View From Castle Rock
Great Day: An Unabridged Story from Armageddon in Retrospect
Best New Horror: A Story from the Collection 20th Century Ghosts
Super Goat Man: An Unabridged Story from Men and Cartoons
The Babysitter's Code: from Short Story Collection Hardly Knew Her

My kids love The Adventures of Tom Sawyer & will be thrilled to get to hear it on their MP3s!
(Thanks to Freebies4Mom!)

Today's freebies

Click here for a free sample of John Frieda Root Awakenings Hair Care.

Sign up to receive 10 free Freeze 'N Steam bags from FoodSaver here. Scroll down to the bottom of the page to find the offer, you will then receive an email that you will need to click through to confirm the offer.

Don't forget your free roll of Reynolds Wrap foil

Today is the day to print your rebate form for a free roll of 100% recycled Reynolds Wrap Foil. If you've not already signed up, visit here to print your form.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Free Marie Callendar's Pasta Dish

Are you an ALL YOU Reality Checker? If not sign up here. Once you are signed up to be an ALL YOU Reality Checker, click here to receive a coupon for a free Marie Callendar's pasta dish.

Tasty Tuesday

I don't have a name for this recipe, it is just FABULOUS! One word of caution...on more than one occasion, a few friends & I have finished off this dessert in one sitting, it is just that good!

Ingredients -

2 - 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 - pkg. crescent rolls
1 egg, divided
1 C. Sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
additional 2 TBS. sugar
1 TBS. cinnamon

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spread 1 package crescent rolls flat in a 9 x 13 inch pan.
  3. Mix cream cheese, the egg yolk, 1 C. sugar and vanilla.
  4. Spread over bottom crust.
  5. Layer the other package crescent rolls over that.
  6. Beat egg white and spread over crescent rolls
  7. Mix together remaining sugar & cinnamon, sprinkle over top.
  8. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until lightly brown.
  9. Serve either warm or cooled, your preference.

Dave Ramsey's Town Hall for Hope

Dave Ramsey, a personal money-management expert, will be hosting a town hall meeting this Thursday, April 23rd, nationwide.
Town Hall for Hope is your opportunity to sit down with people in your community for a nationwide town hall meeting led by Dave Ramsey. Thousands of venues across the country will host the event, broadcasting Dave's live presentation. In the opening half hour, Dave will offer straight talk about the economy, recession, foreclosures and more. He'll carefully explain where we've come from, where we are now, and what we should be doing with our money during this time. Then, Dave will spend an hour answering your questions live!
You can visit Town Hall for Hope for more details. Be sure to click here to see where in your area you can attend this for free.

Monday, April 20, 2009


I just want to take this time to welcome all of my readers! I've been at this a few months now & have gotten great comments from so many of you. I truly love sharing my passion of saving money. I try to do all I can to simplify our lives & by putting all the deals I can find into one place, hopefully that will simplify yours a bit! :)

If you are new to my blog, be sure to check out my previous posts. You can do so by clicking on any of the links on the left hand side. Many of the freebies are still available, so be sure to sign up for them all! If you won't use them yourself, they are great to tuck into a little "just because" gift or to pass onto charities.

So many people are doing all they can these days to save a little here & there. Some are doing it out of necessity & others out of desire. Whatever your reason, I hope to touch on something that you can use here. Most of the things I post about are developed from so many of your questions, so if you have a post suggestion or a question, I'd love to hear it!

Thanks again for all of your comments & suggestions! Feel free to pass on the link to my blog to anyone you know.


Another free sample of Aveeno Nourish

There is another free sample of Aveeno Nourish hair care available, this one courtesy of CVS. Click here to get yours.

If you missed out on the first sample, it is still available here.

Walgreens Deals 4/19-4/25

Reach Toothbrush and Floss
You pay - .99 with in-ad coupon
Buy 2 and use $3/2 coupon from 3/15 Smart Source
Free plus $1 in overage after coupons

Skintimate Shave Cream
Sale price - $2.99
You earn - $2.99 RRs
Free after RRs

Edge Infused or Energy Shaving Gel
Sale price - $2.99
You earn -$2.99 RRs
Free after RRs

Mitchum Deodorant
Sale price - $2.99
You earn - $2 RRs
Use - .75 off coupon from 3/22 Smart Source
.24 each after coupon and RRs

Mentos Gum
Sale Price - 2 for $2 this month (must buy 2 to get this price)
Buy two and use two $1 off coupons from 3/1 Smart Source
Free after coupons

Natures Bounty
Sale price - BOGO Free
Use - 2 $2/1 printable coupons here
Free after coupons

Post Trail Mix Crunch Cereal
Sale price - 2 for $5
Use - 2 - $2 printable coupons
.50 each after coupons

CVS Deals 4/19-4/25

What a busy weekend! I never did make it into CVS, hopefully you can still snag a few deals!

Edge Infused Comfort or Hydrate Shave Gel (limit 1)
You pay - $2.89
You earn - $2.89 ECBs
Free after ECBs

Bayer Aspirin Quick Release Crystals (limit 1)
You pay - $2
You earn - $2 ECBs
Free after ECBs

Crest Pro Health Toothpaste, Rinse, Oral B Floss or Super Floss (limit 2)
You pay - $2.88
You earn - $2 ECBs
Use - .75 off coupon from 4/5 P&G
.13 after ECBs & coupon

Act Rinse (limit 2)
You pay - $3.79
You earn - $2 ECBs
Use - $1 off coupon from 4/19 Smart Source
.79 after ECBs & coupon

L’Oreal Eye Shadow or Liner
Sale - BOGO Free
Use - $2 off HIP Eye or Eye Product from 2/1 Red Plum
$1 off Lip product from 2/1 Red Plum
$2 off make-up, powder, blush or concealer 2/1 Red Plum
$2 off HIP Eye or Eye Product 4/19 Red Plum

If you are new to CVSing, check out my post here.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Free 2 year subscription to Parents Magazine

Even if you don't have children in this age range, what a great gift for someone who does!

Go here for your free 2 year subscription.

Kraft First Taste

If you haven't signed up for Kraft First Taste yet, be sure to sign up here. Each month they offer you a free product to try. I've tasted Jello Singles, Oreo Mini Cakesters, & this month I will be trying a Deli Creations sandwich. They will send you a coupon to take to the store for a full sized product free!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

A few freebies to celebrate Earth Day

Visit a participating Home Depot this Sunday, April 19th to receive a free EcoSmart 14w CFL bulb for their Earth Day 1 Million CFL Light Bulb Giveaway.

Bring in 3 plastic bottles to any Disney Store on April 22nd to receive a free gift.

A few freebies

Click here for a free 1 year subscription to Metropolitan Home magazine.

Parents & teachers of preschoolers can order a free sample pack from 123 Preschool Projects.

(Thanks, Money Saving Mom)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Free Dog Treat Sample

Click here for a free sample of Better Than Ears dog treats.

Vacation Savings - Using Priceline

I believe that the best way to save on a vacation is research & planning. I love to research & plan, so for me this is part of my vacation! However, I know some that don't enjoy the planning or just don't have the time to do so. Hopefully, over the course of my Vacation Savings series, I can do some of that research & planning for you. I will share some inexpensive vacation spots I have found, some tips I have found at cutting costs, & just some tips I have found to make traveling easier.

Let me begin today by saying, that to our family a vacation is a relaxing time away from the house, something that takes us out of our ordinary. It doesn't have to be a week long venture, in our case, it is usually only a couple of days.

One of our biggest savers in hotel fares is by using Priceline. We have saved 75% off a hotel room before! However, there is a trick to Priceline, in order to save much you need to know what you are doing. Priceline is a website where you can name your own price for a hotel (I have never used any of the other services on Priceline, such as the airfare or rental car, so I can't tell you anything about those.). You are not guaranteed a certain hotel, however you are able to choose your star level & area. Once your bid is accepted it is charged to your credit card right away, it is non-refundable.

The best way to learn about Priceline is to visit BiddingForTravel. BiddingForTravel is a message board that shows you all the ins & outs of Priceline, the best place to start on BiddingForTravel is in the Hotel FAQ. Especially the section about free re-bidding, as this is how you save! BiddingForTravel also lists how much Hotels in certain areas are going for, so that when you bid you can have a better idea of how much to bid & what hotel you are likely to get (notice I say likely, as you are not guaranteed a particular hotel).

By using BiddingForTravel, I have stayed at the Hyatt Regency at Union Station in St. Louis several times for as low as $41 a night. BiddingForTravel goes into much more detail about how to get the best prices on the best hotels, however I will outline for you a few basics, on how I have gotten such a great deal on the Hyatt Regency.

  • I always go to BiddingForTravel first.
  • You must always use the Name Your Own Price section on Priceline's website to get the kind of savings I am referring to.
  • Currently Downtown St. Louis has 4 - 4 star hotels, all of which I am okay with getting. Therefore by researching BiddingForTravel, I see what each of the hotels are currently "going for".
  • I then begin my bidding, I usually start with $5-$10 less than what prices are posted on BiddingForTravel. Even though Priceline limits the number of times you can bid in a 24 hour period, I use free re-bidding.
  • Re-bidding - You are allowed to rebid, as long as you change something in your original bid (the star level or add location). I never change my star level, as I like to stay in the 4-star hotels! I then find out what locations do NOT offer 4-star level hotels & add one of those locations to my bid & then up my bid $3-$5. If my bid is still not accepted, I do the same thing again, add a location that does NOT offer a 4-star level hotel & up my bid.

Priceline is not for everybody & all of this can seem quite confusing! However, much more of this can be explained by visiting BiddingForTravel & checking out Priceline's website.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me & I can walk you through it!

Free roll of Reynolds Wrap Foil

On April 22nd Reynolds is offering a rebate for their 100% recycled foil. Click here to sign up to receive an email reminder about this promotion.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

A few freebies

For a free sample of Total Cranberry Crunch, go here.

Click here for a one-year subscription to Old House Journal.

Federal Employees with Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance can go here to receive a free pedometer for each member of their immediate family.

Free shower caddy

Sign up for the Scrubbing Bubbles Bulletin & receive a free shower caddy! Click here to sign up.

Tasty Tuesday

Stuffed Shells

16 oz. Cottage Cheese
2 C. shredded Mozzarella cheese
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese
16 oz. Jumbo shells
your favorite marinara sauce

  1. Boil shells
  2. mix cottage, parmesan & 1 C. mozzarella cheeses & stuff into boiled shells
  3. Place half of the marinara sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 pan.
  4. Place shells in pan
  5. Top shells with remaining marinara
  6. Bake at 400 for 20-25 minutes, covered.
  7. Uncover, top with remaining mozzarella cheese & bake uncovered until mozzarella is melted.

Monday, April 13, 2009

New life for your leftover Easter candy

It seems like every holiday I do all I can to avoid the candy overload. However, very well intentioned relatives & several egg hunts leaves us with overflowing buckets of candy! Here are some tips on what to do with all that leftover candy!

  1. Get out a box of graham crackers & let your kids make a spring cottage! My kids love making "gingerbread" houses at Christmas, why not a spring cottage?
  2. Make S mores with the left over Peeps & melted chocolate. You can also freeze the Peeps to save for your next camping trip.
  3. Freeze the chocolate, then chop it up, great for an ice cream topper!
  4. Chop up chocolate eggs to make chocolate chip cookies. Pop them in the freezer, then make ice cream sandwiches out of them.
  5. Melt left over chocolate bunnies & add 1 TBS of cream in the microwave to dip fresh fruit in for a yummy & much more nutritious treat.
  6. Chop up & throw in chocolate into a cake mix.
  7. Freeze it for later. Leave chocolate candy in its original wrapper & place into a freezer bag, it can be frozen for up to 1 year. Some chocolate may "bloom" (turn white), however this does not affect the taste.

Walgreens Deals 4/12-4/18

Colgate MaxWhite/MaxFresh Toothbrush
You pay - $3.29
You earn - $3.29 RRs
Use - .75 coupon from the 3/29 Smart Source
Free plus overage after RRs & coupon

Scunci Elastics, 18pk
You pay - $2.00
You earn - $2.00 RRs
Free after RRs

Excedrin Pain Relief tablets or Express Gels, 24 ct.
Sale price - BOGO - 2 for $4.79
Use 2 - $2/1 coupons here
.40 each after coupons and sale

Friday, April 10, 2009

CVS Deals 4/12-4/18

Softsoap Scrub body wash (limit 1)
You pay - $4.99
You earn - $4.99 ECBs
Use - $1 off coupon from 3/22 Smart Source
Free plus $1 overage after ECBs & coupon

Colgate Enamel product, sensitive whitening toothpaste or 360 Sensitive toothbrush (limit 2)
You pay - $3.99
You earn - $3.99
Use - $1 off printable
Free plus $1 overage after ECBs & coupon

Pantene Shampoo or Conditioner
You pay - 2/$7
You earn - $2 ECBs when you buy 2
Use - Free Pantene styling product when you buy shampoo coupon from 3/15 P&G
$2.50 each & a free styling product

CVS brand diapers
Sale price - Buy one get one free
Around 4.50 each

Sure solid or spray deodorant
You pay - 2/$5
You earn - $2 ECBs when you buy 2
Use - $1 off spray or
Use - .75 off solid or
Use - $1 off printable (print 2)
Final price depends on coupons used

Gillette Venus Embrace or Breeze razor
You pay - $7.99
You earn - $4 ECBs
Use - $2 off coupon from P&G insert
$1.99 after ECBs & coupon

Head & Shoulders, Gillette , & Pantene Restoratives or Expressions Shampoo & conditioner (limit 3)
You pay - $4.49
You earn - $1.50 ECBs
Use - $2 off Gillette shampoo from P&G insert or
Use - $2 off 2 Head & Shoulders from P&G insert
Final price depends on coupons used

Airwick Mini Fresh Matic automatic spray or Lumin Air Flameless candle
Sale price - $4.99
Use - $4 off or $3 off printable coupons found here
$1.99 or .99 depending on coupon used

Coupon note

For those of you who purchase the Sunday paper just for the coupons, be aware that there won't be any coupon inserts in the paper this Sunday. Coupon inserts are always left out of major holiday weekend papers.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Walmart Deals

Heading to Walmart? Be sure to print out some coupons & pick up some stuff for free, or almost free! Keep in mind that Walmart stores vary in their prices. However, whatever Walmart you shop at, their prices should be pretty close to the ones listed.

Olay Body Soap, 2 pk. - $1.97
Use - $2 off coupon from 4/5 P&G insert
Free after coupon

No Nonsense pantyhose - $1
Use - $1 coupon from 3/29 Smart Source
Free after coupon

Johnson's Baby Swabs - $1.38
Use - $1 coupon from 3/8 Red Plum
.38 after coupon

Glucerna Cereal - $3.98
Use - $5 printable coupon
Free after coupon

Reach floss - $1
Use - $1 off coupon from 2/8 Red Plum
Free after coupon

Purina cat food - $3.97
Use - $4 off printable coupon
Free after coupon

Purina Puppy Chow - $4.12
Use - $4 off printable coupon
.12 after coupon

Kotex Lightdays pads - $1
Use $2 off 2 printable
Free after coupon

Another free Huggies Pure & Natural sample

Click here for another Huggies Pure & Natural diaper sample. This one is different from the one I posted earlier, so if you didn't get that one, be sure to scroll down to sign up! Samples are available in sizes Newborn, 1 & 2.

Don't have a baby that little? These are great to tuck into a baby gift, donate to a pregnancy center, or give the newborn size to a little girl in your life to diaper her dolls!

Send a great card at a great price!

Several companies are offering mother's day photo cards for only the cost of shipping. What a great, personalized way to say Happy Mother's Day!
Scrapblog has 18 predesigned cards to choose from. Customize the card to your liking, they will print it for free & ship it right to the recipient of your choice! You pay only $1 to cover shipping.
Kodak is giving away 1 million photo cards in their MOM-A-THON promotion. Your free card is valued up to $2.49, you just pay .99 shipping. Be sure to enter FREECARD at checkout to redeem.

A free DVD

Click here to order your free Precious Places DVD from Fisher Price. What a great gift for a little girl!

Little girls love playing princess-and they're sure to love all the magical surprises of the new Precious Places™ line from Fisher-Price. Catch Princess Sirina and her friends on this exciting DVD, as they discover their own unique strengths and the magic of teamwork.

Free IdeaPaint Sample

IdeaPaint is a paint that turns a surface into a dry erase board. Click here to get your free sample.

Lowes Build and Grow this Saturday

Kids can make this birdhouse for FREE Saturday, April 11th from 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.!

If you've never been to a Lowe's Build and Grow Clinic, you should give it a try. My kids love going to these. The kits are easy to assemble & Lowes employees are on hand to help your child out. All kids get a kid-sized Lowe's apron, safety goggles, a certificate, & a patch of the completed project to take home with them.

It is a great way to help your child build confidence, they love coming home with something they built! And in our household, getting to use a
hammer is an awesome thing!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


For a free sample of Gillette Body Wash/Shampoo click here.

Get your free 1-year subscription to Baseball Digest.

Vacation Savings - new weekly series!

We love to vacation! I love the memories that a vacation can create. I love seeing & showing my children something other than our own backyard, for them to experience new things.
Living in a family of 6 on one income, vacations always come last and we just don't get to take them very often. Since Jay & I have been married we have been blessed to have taken a few "big" vacations. On the years we have not been able to take a big vacation we try to do something little.

In order to afford our vacations, I have had to be very creative in some of our "little" vacations, to make them a vacation. On our big vacations, I have had to be creative in cutting here & there, without feeling like we have cut anything out. When we went to Disney World I studied & searched for months on different ways to save, I then put all of those tips into a file. After sharing that file with friends & family, it became so wanted I had complete strangers asking me for a copy!

I'm going to start a new weekly series on vacation savings. If you have any tips or a favorite inexpensive vacation destination, please share it with me, so that I can pass it on!

One of our family's favorite things to do in summer is camping. We used to do tent camping, however it just became easier with the little ones to get a camper. We started out with a 1978 pop-up camper. After a weekend of one of the kids having diarrhea, we decided it was best for our family to have a bathroom! We then upgraded to a 1982 pull behind camper trailer. It is small, but plenty of room for all of us, as we spend 95% of our time outside of the camper. One thing about having a camper, it makes camping so much easier. I know alot of people who just don't like the work that goes into camping, packing everything up to go & unpacking everything when you get home. That is another we reason we love having a camper, everything is always packed up & ready to go! It sure makes going away for the weekend tons easier.

If you are looking for an inexpensive getaway, I highly suggest camping! I have a couple of friends who always insisted they "were not campers". After some persueding from their husbands, they went for a weekend & ended up loving it. They now have their own campers & go camping almost every weekend of the summer. Even if you aren't a camper, most campgrounds have cabins that are just as nice & much cheaper than a hotel room.
If you are starting out camping, some items I suggest to make your weekend easier -
  1. Obviously, you need a tent
  2. air mattresses - it sure makes your nights sleep better!
  3. If tent camping - a fan, again, makes a hot nights sleep better!
  4. small grill
  5. lanterns or flashlights
  6. cooler

For those just starting out, you can borrow equipment or check out yard sales.

Anyone can get electric sites, even tent campers. When we did tent camp, we still got electric sites, it just made our weekend easier to have a fan & a mini fridge.

Where to camp? You can start at looking at local campgrounds or State Parks. Order your states recreational guide. They always have campgrounds listed. You can also visit Reserve America to search for campgrounds in your area.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


A free sample of Crest Pro-Health Enamel Shield toothpaste.

Sign up for your Simple and Delicious coupon booklet. It contains $10 worth of coupons & a coupon for a free bottle of Hunt's ketchup!

Tasty Tuesday

Ham is a simple thing to fix. I know some people who are intimidated by the thought of cooking a ham for their family & I often have people ask how I fix mine. So, I thought with Easter coming up on Sunday, it would be fitting to post how I cook my ham.

I have tried several differnent hams over the last few years & I've got to say, my favorite to purchase is the Sam's Choice ham from Walmart. It comes with a glaze packet, which is good, but I usually slice into the top of my ham several times & pack it with alot of brown sugar. I cut into it so that the brown sugar gets down inside the ham. I then place several pineapple slices on top & wrap it REALLY well in aluminum foil, I double wrap it. I then place it into a baking dish (just in case it leaks) & put it in the oven on 250 for 4-6 hours. My ham always turns out juicy & sweet.

Affording Easter

For our family, we choose to do Easter somewhat "big". 3 out of 4 of our kids' birthday's are in December. And we just don't buy things for our kids throughout the year, they wait for Christmas, their birthday, or Easter. So, we choose to splurge a little on Easter to give them another time during the year other than December to receive a gift. When I say we splurge, I mean they generally get alot in their basket, but I still save! I use this to get them things they will use for summer, such as sprinklers, baseball gear, beach towels, etc. I look for this stuff to go on clearance, then put it back for next Easter.

Because we spend a little more on a "bigger" gift, I try to save as much as possible on the basket fillers.

Flip flops - my kids get these each year, always needed for summer!
Kite - You can get these for only $1.
Bubbles - while they aren't expensive, homemade is cheaper!
Homemade playdough - you can do a search online to find tons of recipes for this.
Oobleck - click here for the recipe.
Sidewalk chalk - while this is generally inexpensive, to save a bit more, I split up a thing of chalk between each of my kids, wrap in cellophane & tie with a ribbon.
Highlighters - I divide a pack of these up between my 3 older kids, they love coloring with these.
Easter crayons - I take old broken crayons, melt them down & use cookie cutters to mold them into an easter shape.
Free samples - my daughter loves getting a sample of "big girl" shampoo, body wash, or lotion in her basket.
Dice - I have put 5 dice into an egg & they use them to play Yahtzee.
punch balls - you can generally find a pack of 3 of these for $1, I split them up between my 3 older kids.

Also, instead of giving my kids candy, I give them those prepackaged snacks, Go-gurt, & single serving juices. They love to get these (since I never buy them throughout the year), & they can use them in their lunch boxes & are healthier than all that candy! I purchase 1 box & split up the single packages between each of the kids. This year I found for $1.97 a box that has a single serving cereal, a poptart, & a juice box. This can be their breakfast on our busy Easter morning!

Monday, April 6, 2009

A few freebies

For a free sample of Huggies Pure & Natural click here.

Click here for a free sample of Quaker Rice Quakes. This is a new sample, so if you've signed up before - sign up again! Choose between Chocolatey Drizzle or Cheddar Cheese.

Get a free sample of GoodNites boxers.

Tell the Story of Easter with Ressurection Eggs

My kids love "doing" our Ressurection Eggs. They are an easy & fun way to present the Easter Story to our kids. We generally get them out several times before Easter & do several different things with them. They love doing it over & over again each year & I love hearing them playing with the eggs to each other. We have opened them all up in one sitting, split them up & do one, two, or three eggs each night leading up to Easter, we have hid the eggs, let the kids find them, then tell the story. There is so many ways you can do it.

You can purchase them in stores, but they are also very easy to make on your own. One thing to remember, there is so many items you can use to tell the different parts of Easter, I've listed a few, there is many other items you can use to teach the story of Easter.

What you'll need -
12 plastic fillable eggs (it is easier if you have 12 different colors)
Items described below to put into eggs. If you don't have an actual item, you can use a picture of that item.

Donkey or palm branch - Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey, while the people waved palm branches. Read Matthew 21:1-11

Coins - To represent the 30 coins Judas accepted for betraying Jesus. Read Matthew 26:14

Piece of bread - To represent the bread which represents Jesus' body. Read Matthew 26:26

Praying Hands - To remind us Jesus went to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray. Read Mark 14:32-42

Piece of rope - To represent the ropes used to whip Jesus. Read John 19:1-15

Crown of thorns (can use a small thorny branch) - They placed a crown of thorns on His head. Read Matthew 27:29-31

Nail - 3 nails were driven into Jesus' hands & feet - Read John 19:16-22

Dice - The soldiers gambled for Jesus' robe. Read John 19:23-25

Spear - Soldiers used a spear to pierce the side of Jesus. Read John 19:31-37

A piece of Linen or white cloth - Jesus' body was wrapped in a linen cloth. Read Matthew 27:57-61

Rock - The large stone covering the tomb was rolled away. Read Matthew 28:1-3

The last egg should be empty, just as Jesus' tomb was empty! Read Matthew 28:6

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Walgreens deals 4/5-4/11

Colgate Total Toothpaste
You pay - $3.49
You earn - $3.49 RRs
Use - $1 off printable
Free plus overage after coupon & RRs

Oust Air Sanitizer or Surface & Air Sanitizer
You pay - $2.99
You earn - $1 April Easy Saver Rebate
Use - $2 off coupon from 3/29 Smart Source
Free plus overage after coupon & rebate

Glade Lasting Impressions
You pay - $5.99
You earn - $2 April Easy Saver rebate
Use - $4 off coupon from 3/29 Smart Source
Free after coupon & rebate

Reach Ultraclean Toothbrush and Floss
You pay - 2/$5
You earn - $2.50 RRs when you buy 2
Use - $1 off coupon from 2/8 Red Plum insert (use 2)
.50 for 2 after RRs & coupons

April Freebies

Edge Infused Energy Shaving Gel
You pay - $3.59
You earn - $3.59 RRs
Free after RRs

Skintimate Cream Shave
You pay - $2.99
You earn - $2.99 RRs
Free after RRs

One-A-Day multivitamin Drink Mix
You pay - $1.49
You earn - $1.49 April Easy Saver rebate
Free after Rebate

Printer Cartridge Refills
You pay - $7.50
You earn - $7.50 April Easy Saver rebate
Free after rebate

Friday, April 3, 2009

CVS deals 4/5 - 4/11

Bamboo Easter Baskets (limit 2) Sunday & Monday only
You pay - $1.99
You earn - $1.99 ECBs
Free after ECBs

Easter Grass (limit 2) Sunday & Monday only
You pay - .79
You earn - .79 ECBs
Free after ECBs

Excedrin, 20 - 24 ct.
Sale price - $1.99
Use - $2 off printable Exedrin Migraine or
Use - $2 off printable Exedrin Express Gels
Free after coupon

Skintimate Dry Skin or Extra Gentle Moisturizing Cream Shave (limit 1)
You pay - $3.49
You earn - $3.49 ECBs
Free after ECBs

Colgate Max Fresh
You pay - $2.99
You earn - $2 ECBs
Use - .75 off coupon from 2/22 or 3/29 Smart Source
.24 after ECBs & coupon

A few freebies

For a free sample of Glad Force Flex trash bags, click here. A membership number is not required.

Click here for a free sample of Emergen C Blue.

For a free copy of People: Yearbook 2009, click here.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Save money on groceries without using coupons

Coupons are a great way to save money, but sometimes we don't have a coupon for products we need & some people just don't like to take the time to cut & organize coupons. There are some ways you can cut your costs without using coupons.

  1. Always make a list & stick to it. Impulse buying is what gets most of us!
  2. Always look at the unit price. Most all stores list this on the price tag stuck to the shelf. We always assume buying the larger quantity is the cheapest, but it isn't always.
  3. Know your prices. If you know your prices at each store you shop, you know when you have found a great sale on an item & can stock up.
  4. Buy generic. Generic foods often taste the same as the name brands.
  5. Plan your weekly menu around the weekly sales flyer, based on what is on sale that week.
  6. Don't buy prepackaged snacks. While they are convenient, it only takes a few minutes when you get home, to divide up your food into snack sized baggies.
  7. Eat a few meatless meals each week. Meat is one of the most expensive parts of a meal.

Free events this weekend

Looking for something to do with the kids? Check out these free events happening on Saturday, April 4th!

Home Depot Kids Workshop - These are free workshops with a suggested age of 5-12, however my son started doing these when he was 3. Kids get to make a project and receive a free Home Depot apron along with a pin of the completed project. Workshops are come & go between 9:00 - 12:00.

This Saturday kids will make a window birdhouse.

The Knack at Michaels - Free Family Event Powered by Crayola® and HP, 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Let your imagination take you out of this world! Come join us for a 3D experience (3D glasses provided) and treasure hunt. Make your own 3D mini poster, “far out” finger puppet, AND Monsters vs. AliensTM coloring pages for FREE! Ages 5–12 welcome.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


For a free sample of Rachel Ray's Nutrish Dog Food click here.

Click here for a free sample of Playtex Sport tampons. There is also $1 off printable coupon on the site.