Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Long time no post...

Summer has come and gone and I have been super busy with the kids...keeping them out of that boredom state that we moms know all too well.

Confession time...I didn't use my coupon talent this summer much.  I was so busy with other things that clipping, organizing, and actually using coupons was not my priority.  Plus, we have been trying to eat healthier and coupons done get sent to me for fresh fruits and veggies...wonder why???

So, here we are with one child back in school full time...:)  and the other will start 1/2 days 3 days a week next week... :) :)  Once my oldest went back to school things calmed down around here.  Crazy how one kid can cause so much extra commotion....which I call picking on the little brother until he screams.

I am actually using my skills at couponing again.  Today I hit up Walgreen's for the few items that were on my "usable" list.  I have decided that I will not get things that are free that I can not use...they just go to waste.  For example, one item that is FREE after RR is Estroven...well I really have no use for Estroven so I decided to skip that one.  Instead I picked up 4 bags of M&M's and Tampons...yep...that was all.

It looked like this:

Tampax Tampons: $2.99
Used $2 coupon
-Get $1 RR

(4) bags of M&M's 4/$10
Used (1) $1.50/2 coupon from Sept. All You Magazine
(1) $1/2 from the newspaper (I don't know where anymore I clip my coupons) :)
-Get $5 RR

(1) Small bag of coconut M&M's to keep the child happy while I stood in line at Motor Vehicle.
Used $4 RR from last week.

Paid $6.46
Got back $6.00 in RR's!

So I am back to stock up mode because we only have 3 boxes of cereal on hand and that is a bad when we have lots of cereal to choose from the hubby is really happy.  Gotta keep the man of this house happy. 

I will keep you posted on our stock up status...hoping I can stick to it now that the kids are back in school and I will have some time to do some catching up.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Where has the summer gone?

As I sit out on my deck on a warm afternoon enjoying the quiet while my son plays and my daughter is on a bike ride with her friend I can't believe that July is almost over! 

I guess when you are busy helping your husband get a cabinet project completed and out of his shop time flies! 

The kids have been keeping me busy with swim lessons, weekly movies, geocaching, playing in the water...and just about anything we can find to do for cheap or better yet FREE!

These are the free things we have been doing this summer:

  • FREE game per day per kid including shoes!
  • Swimming with friends at their pools.
  • Slip and slide down our backyard hill!
  • Geocaching with friends...this is so much fun for the kids and they get a lot of exercise!  Check out  You can find all kinds of geocaches within in walking distance from your house!  
  • We have played in the water the parks.  Where ever they are to keep cool!
  • Harkins Movie Theaters has a summer movie program that cost us $15 for the three of us to see 10 movies all summer long!  If you didn't get the pass it is $2 per movie.  There are still two left and the play every day of the week!  We saw Yogi Bear yesterday...I even enjoyed it!
  •  My daughter went to camp for a week and learned so many wonderful things...all for a very low price!  It was worth every penny we paid!
  • Swim lessons are pretty reasonable and had given my daughter strong skills in the water...however they tend to fill up fast for the little kids and I couldn't get my son in :(
  • My daughter learned how to care for our neighbors dog and house while they were away.  It was a great responsibility for her and earned her some summer fun $$!
  • Teaching my daughter to clean :) bonus for me!
  • Summer reading!  Our closest libraries don't have the best program, but Broomfield seems to have a great one with all kinds of prizes.
Now that I can breathe just a little bit around here...I wanted to do so many more things this summer.  Let's see if we can accomplish any of them.  We have one vacation this summer and a birthday where a special girl will turn 9!  Those will be our last fun things for the summer!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Donate from your stockpile to the Victims of the tornadoes

Kristin over at Couponing to Disney lives near where the Tornadoes hit this week.  There is such a widespread devastation that the need some help with basic necessities. 

One way you can help is to get a Priority Mail box from the post office and fill with items from your stockpile.  I know I have tons of toothpaste and other items that I can send over...also clothing and shoes in decent shape would also be helpful.  I think they are in dire need of diapers, etc.

Here is an example of what it will cost to ship a larger box of items:

Large Flat Rate Box

Domestic Rate: $14.20 with online savings
APO/FPO/DPO Rate*: $12.20 online
You save $0.75 online
Size:12" x 12" x 5 1/2"
Good for:
  • Multiple Items
  • Laptop Computers
  • Care Packages

Friday, April 1, 2011

Kings Cereal Deal: Frosted Mini Wheats A Touch of Fruit! FREE with Rebate

I hit King Soopers this week for their deals and my weekly grocery shopping trip.  I was in dire need of fruit!  The kids devoured the 3lbs. of bananas I bought YESTERDAY!

I thought I would share what I learned about the Kellogg's deal that is going on this week.

Buy 4 participating Kellogg's products and get 2 FREE gallons of Colorado Proud Milk.

Here is the list of cereal that I saw that were participating cereals:
All Bran
Fiber Plus
Cracklin Oat Bran
Apple Jacks
Fruit Loops
Honey Smacks
Product 19
Smart Start
Mini Wheats (includes the new fruit filled)
Special K
Curncy Nut
Corn Flakes
Raisin Bran Crunch
Rice Krispies
Cocoa Krispies

I had coupons for the new Fruit Filled Mini Wheats for $.70 off doubling to $1.  I bought 4 of them got the 2 gallons of milk and paid $6.

Now, there is a rebate right on the box.  You will get to try them FREE with UPC and receipt.  Limit ONE per household.  Not, a bad deal!

I also picked up Minute Maid OJ that was marked down to $1.49 and used $1 off coupons making the 64oz. $.49

I also love the So Coconut Milk that is on sale for $1.88 and used my $1 off coupons, making them $.88

Cottonelle TP $3.98
Use $.50 printable

There are some other Crazy 8 deals out there, those are the deals that stuck out to me.

Have a great weekend.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Deposit to Disney Fund!!!

(2) $5.00 Rebates for Prestone Antifreeze that we did a few months back.
$5 from my daughter for her friends birthday present.
$135.00 from my vacation check
Total Deposit $150.00

Sunday, March 13, 2011

FREE Gain Laundry Sheets...with $1.13 in OVERAGE!

A good friend of mine gave me a bunch of coupon inserts this week.  In them were $3 off any Gain Laundry Soap or dryer sheets.

I hit Walmart and found their 40 count sheets to be $1.87.
I bought 8 =$14.96
Used (8) $3 coupons -$24
=$9.04 in OVERAGE to use on other items.

I bought a birthday present for my daughter's friend with the $!!!

Now, I have given away the darn things because they have such a strong scent that I can't stand!  And the Soapnuts I bought are working so great I don't need the dryer sheets...but for $9.00 I will take them!

Keep in mind that Walmart changed their coupon policy to allow overage...print it out and take it with you.

Go Here, and print you copy.  I didn't have any problems with it!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

FREE Tuna and King Soopers this week...

Use your coupons for $1.50 off 3 and $.75/2 that came in last weekends paper for FREE Tuna.

I had some other coupons that were catalina's and I got 15 cans of tuna today!

Love my FREE shopping days!

Find the cheapes gas in your area

Thanks to Mojo Savings for posting this.  Currently the cheapest gas in my area is $3.22!  And I don't have to drive too far for that!

Gas Map

March 9 Meal Tracking

Breakfast: 2 eggs, 1 slice of Sprouted Cinnamon Raisin Bread (only 80 calories)

Lunch: Salad

Dinner: Burgers, sweet potatoes, vegetables

Snack: protein bar 1/2 in am 1/2 in pm and an orange

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Menu Plan

Tuesday: Leftovers
Wednesday: Burgers, sweet potatoes, vegetable
Thursday: Crockpot Eggplant Parmesan with Feta and Salad
Friday: Pizza Night
Saturday: Popcorn, Fruit, etc. Movie Night
Sunday: Honey Orange Tofu with Brown Rice and Broccoli
Monday: Mac and Cheese and Salad

March 8 Meal Tracking

Breakfast: 2 Slices of Sprouted Cinnamon Raisin bread with Peanut butter

Lunch: Left over quinoa and lentil salad with green salad

Dinner: Leftover smorgasboard...

Deposit to our Disney Fund!!!

I deposited $48.51 into our fund today!

I found $40 stuffed in a hiding place...don't know what it was stuffed there for???
Jacob added $5
I added $3.51 from my wallet.

YEAH!  I'm so excited!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

March 6th Eating

Breakfast: Banana French Toast and Orange Juice (I only ate one slice)

Lunch: Leftover Mediterranean Chick Pea Patties and a large salad
The kids and I had a slice of banana pudding pie.

Dinner: Haystacks (Basically glorified Nachos.  I plan to have more lettuce than chips and cheese)

Dessert: Lemon Meringue Pie (It is my hubby's birthday today and this is is favorite)

Have a great Sunday!

Disney Fund Update!

I'm so proud of my little guy!  He didn't spend the $ he had in his jar from his February allowance, so I asked him if he would like to keep it for spending money or put it in the Disney Fund?  He wanted to put it in the Disney Fund Jar.

This week we added $8.51 to the jar!  The $3.51 came from around the house...just money I found!

Total in our Fund: $114.42

I will continue to update our totals as I add it to our fund!  I am hoping that my oldest will keep some of her spending $ and put it in the Fund also!  She is the worst at spending her allowance on just plain junk!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

What do you do to save Money?

I'm sitting here with a few hours of peace and quiet.  My kids are at church for their once a month fun group activities/learning!

I keep thinking and thinking about ways to squeeze $ out of everything we do.  I believe that our family is in dire need of a vacation since my hubby works so hard to provide for us and we end up just getting by some months and other months are fabulous!  We have to live on a budget and save for those things we want!  Our needs are always taken care of first.  So, I thought I would list the things I do to save $ and it would be great if you can add your saving ideas.

1.  Shop the sales/stock up with coupons.  (This is a great one, but I am careful to not buy things I don't need...that doesn't save me any $ I end up spending more if I try to get all the great deals)

2.  Shop at Goodwill for clothing for my daughter.  I am fortunate enough to have fabulous friends who give me hand-me-downs for my son.  I do buy their shoes on sale...I won't do Goodwill on me picky.

3.  Cook from scratch.  It is wayyy cheaper to buy beans in bulk and soak them on your own.  I also buy rice in bulk, popcorn, etc.  Some days it is hard to remember to plan on having beans ready, so I try to soak a lot all at once and freeze them!

4.  I have a garden in the summer!  This year I plan to expand!  I want to have enough to freeze and can this year.  I did freeze a TON of zuchinni last fact I need to make some bread with that.

5.  I started a Disney Fund Jar with my kids.  I just had the bank count all our change and I added that to our fund.  I labeled it with some vinyl.  I got the kids to help me get some Mickey's on there and they are excited to add some of their allowance to it every month.  I plan to do the same.  All my change from grocery shopping, etc. will go into the jar.  I haven't been spending the change, just adding it to the jar.

6.  I am going to start adding the savings to my fund from my groceries.  If I am under budget then it will go to straight into our fund!

7.  I am working on the kids to keep their lights turned off and we use our adjustable thermostat and turn it off completely when it is warm out.

8.  I try to plan out my errands on the days that my son has school.  I write down my route on a sticky note and put it on my dash so I know exactly where I am going.  I also plan out all my lists and clip my coupons to them.  The hardest part is sticking to the list!  I MUST if I want this vacation!

9.  I signed up for 4 survey companies.  I have spend about an hour on one and have earned almost $10!  Any found money will be added to the fund!  Even what is found in the laundry (sometimes my family tips me and they don't even know it.)

10.  We CUT OUT OUR CABLE!  DONE!  I am so relieve to finally have done it.  Our bill dropped by $58 each month!  That $ will go directly to our fund!  We now have netflix for $7.99 a month, so we are saving $50 a month!  The best part is that we don't even miss it!  YEAH!

Those are my 10 for now.  I will keep listing more as I come up with them.

Have a fabulous weekend!  I am off to check my garbanzo beans...

Friday, March 4, 2011

March 4 Meal Tracking

This is my plan...I will edit if the day changes.

Breakfast: 2/3 C. Oatmeal with blueberries and 1tsp Agave, Caffix (like coffee only 5 calories), sweetened with 1 tsp Agave and a little Almond Milk.

Lunch:  Salad with Almonds, cucumbers, red pepper.

Snack: Orange

Dinner: 1 Slice of Pizza and a large Salad

March GOALS!

For the past week I have been sick with some nasty virus that causes a cough, stuffy/runny nose, fever on and off, and just feeling down right yucky!  I took two nights off of my 1 hour job (that is how bad I felt).  I am finally feeling a little better but the time resting got me thinking and plotting :)

Here are my March goals:
Prepare for my run (I signed up for the Colfax Marathon May 15th, which I am doing a relay with some people I work with)  So, I have been running 3 x's a week with some great people.  This week...I had to take off. 
Track my eating on my blog...this should hopefully keep me accountable!

My other goal is HUGE!  I am extremely excited for it!  I want to get my family to take a VACATION!  We haven't had a REAL vacation in...well, over 8 years.  Since our 1st was born we have sacrificed on one income so I could stay home with them.  We don't do anything our budget can't handle.  Since we are so frugal our vacations have consisted of 3-4 days with family in timeshares in the mountains...over a long weekend so my hubby doesn't miss work. 

So, I talked to my hubby who is very skeptical and said that we would talk when we have $10,000 in the bank along with the $ that is required to take a vacation... (this is the downer...yet, it is also the challenge for me!)  I am actually proud of my hubby for making that goal!  We have seen so many ups and downs in the last 8 years and many lessons learned.  I'm glad he is keeping me on track.

Being that this is our slow/hard time of year it will be a challenge.  So, I am looking for extra $ to stash...that is where my posts will keep me in line!

My first deposit was $55.91 from our change that we have collected.
My next deposit will be from my vacation check that I will get in a few weeks.

Then, I need to be FRUGAL!!!

  • I need ideas for inexpensive/free entertainment or dates. 
  • Grocery shopping will have to be planned carefully.
  • Clothing will be also something we have to shop clearance/Goodwill for.
  • Home improvements...well that will also have to be planned carefully (working on that as we have the wood for our cabinets that I bought a year ago with my extra grocery $)
  • New car...well that is possibly in the works also.
All the above things will get in my savings way...I will need help to stay on track!

Our vacation I am going to start planning will be to Disney World!!!  I am so darn excited!  So, how long will this take me???

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sort of back to normal...

My house looked like this a few weeks ago...

 My son checking out how to sit on the the dining room, with a stack of Hickory in front of it.
 My hubby getting ready to tear out that little corner wall...there was only an electrical wire in it???
 My daughter helping roll up the rug and getting ready to move out all the furniture and wood...etc.
 Carpeting, tack strip, debris all gone...vapor barrier down...What a cute helper we have!
 The start of the flooring.
 My husband made these!  Sure you can buy them...but I am so proud to say he made them!

All for the sanding and finishing.  The dog made himself at home...and the little guy was ready to feed him right there too!

The floor is finished and we moved some of our furniture back....some trim installed, too (we painted it white.  Out with the stained trim)  But we have the rest of our wood piled back there for the rest of the main level.  Things have been so out of normal here that I have been just getting by.  We were eating in our laps and walking around piles of stuff and furniture.  It was fun stuff.

Now...on to our kitchen cabinet making...another adventure!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Getting ready for Hardwood Floors to be Installed

I have been working for the last two weeks around this Pile-O-Hickory that my hubby milled into flooring:

And clearing off this large Bookcase: You can see I still need to clear off a few items...

And finding a way to put all food items from Here somewhere accessible.  We added this pantry because my small kitchen didn't have any kind of food storage.  No doors yet, something that is yet to come.

You see I must clear out all my furniture from my living room, my dining room, and now this has morphed into a larger project and I must remove items from my cabinets.  The hubster is planning on tearing out ALL my cabinets and building me new ones!!!  Which requires tearing out this nasty drop ceiling which makes me feel all small in my kitchen.  Making room for 42" cabinets that I won't be able to reach up to get anything from, but making me feel even shorter than I am, and at 5'8" I am not all that short.  This is my little
 This is my little kitchen with hardly any storage.  We plan to move the fridge over right next to my pantry and then have more counter space on the other side of the fridge.  Both corners will have storage, the one by the dishwasher will have a corner blind pull out and the other will have a Lazy Susan. 

This side won't change much, but we are planning on two pull out drawers on that end cabinet, and a cookie sheet cabinet on the other side next to the Lazy Susan in the corner, then the cabinet on the end will have an awesome spice pull out...that is being designed by the hubby.  I have other ideas for storage options that I am putting in with my hubby designer.  We have limited space in this kitchen so we are trying to make the most out of it.

Tearing out this little wall...there is nothing in there (see the small box with screws in it...yep, we checked a wire is all that is in there.)  This area will become my main level desk (can you see a nice desk with cabinets above it).  I need a space for our personal office (separate our Business from our personal life).

And the hubby has a vision for our fireplace so the brick and mantle will be removed...and some kind of slate/granite or such will take its place.  Then the handy man that he is will build me a gorgeous mantle out of Birch.  We love birch in this house...all our cabinets will be Birch

The lack of posting is because of my mess and I am just exhausted these days trying to work (sub and my UPS job) and getting all the other stuff in life done.  I am succeeding at getting a lot of the processed items out of my house, the cost isn't low, but I know it is important for our health to eat whole foods.  I will have to get some recipes up that we have tried with reviews.  One that was just AWESOME! was Black Bean Sweet Potato Burgers!  They were so yummy I was eating the left overs cold.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Cleaning out...freeing up space

After a few weeks into the New Year and I am still sticking to my goals.  It has been a challenge, but this is what I have done so far:

  1. Added to our savings accounts!  YEAH!  That is a huge feat for us as this is usually our slow time and we are removing $ from our savings accounts. 
  2. Changed what my pantry looks like.  I have added TONS of beans, rice, healthy granola, nuts, seeds, lots of whole foods (Organic if I can)
  3. I have removed the unhealthy chips from our pantry and replaced them with Organic Tortilla Chips (Costco for $4.xx).  Removed any white rice, and crackers that were loaded with processed junk.
  4. Loaded my fridge with TONS of veggies and fruits.  Costco is great for things like bananas ($1.32/3lbs.), Organic Carrots ($5.49 10lbs), Organic Spring lettuce mix, Organic Spinach ($3.49 for a LARGE container), sugar snap peas, etc.  I am keeping to the Organic produce as much as possible which requires shopping at several stores.
  5. I have spent a little time doing something with each kid every day.  For Jacob he loves to "help" me cook dinner every night, so we spend our time measuring and stirring, and laughing about our messes.
  6. Jalynn wants me to race her on Mario Kart...FUN!  We laugh so hard!
  7. I have been working hard at clearing out old paperwork from our office.  So far I have shredded 2 trash bags full, and recycled 2 trash bags full of paperwork we no longer needed.  I narrowed down what we need to keep to 3 small file boxes.  After 7 years I finally have a grasp on what we need to keep and what can be tossed!  

So, I feel pretty good about my hard work this past 20 days!  Now, I have 2 more weeks to get things moved so we can install our hardwoods.  According to my hubby he wants to build our cabinets and tear out all our old ones...that is to be determined as that requires MUCH more work.