Friday, July 31, 2009

Small Favor: About Downloading

I just have a small favor for those of you that have blogs. I am delighted that you like what you see here and that you maybe even found some great freebies that you want to post about. But please, if you download an image from my site, do me a polite favor and link to me somewhere in your post.

As you obviously know, blogging takes a lot of time and energy. I certainly don't mind helping you save some time and money, but would appreciate if you would return the favor. Thanks a bunch and happy blogging!

Freebie: Wish HE Laundry Detergent?

According to MoneySavingMom if you go here and leave a comment on this blog post you can get a free bottle of Wish HE laundry detergent. It sounds a bit unusual but I figure it is worth a shot at least. I mean what is the worst that can happen?!

If you notice the small print just above the comment form it does say:

By leaving a comment on the blog, you agree that Wisk® may contact you tell you about new products, special offers and promotions.

Registration subject to “Terms of Use” on Free bottle offer is limited to one (1) per street address or P.O. Box. Open to residents of the [50] [or continental] United States and DC. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited. Sponsor: Sun Products Corp.

Freebie: Sensible Portions Cheating with Chocolate

Just thought I would offer a few suggestions for doing these things. Set up a free yahoo or gmail email address just for samples etc. so you don't get bogged down with any emails the companies send. And download makes filling these things in a cinch and it is free! Also, remember, you only need to fill in the parts that have an * in order to get the sample.

Go here to get a sample of Sensible Portions Cheating with Chocolate sample. Anything chocolate should be pretty good, right?

Free Chocolate Friday

Don't forget to sign up for your free chocolate today. Remember you can get four coupons per household.

Cheap Starbucks at Walgreens

Until 8/1, Walgreens has the single bottles of Starbucks Frappucino's for $1.25 each after an in-ad coupon. You can get them for $0.25 each if you use the $1 coupon here (IE link) or here (FF link). And if you buy them today, 7/31, and use the 15%/20% off coupon you should be able to get them for a mere 6 cents!

Just be sure to give the cashier the 15% off coupon first, then the manufacturer's coupon and then the in-ad coupon so this rings up correctly.

This sounds like a yummy deal! I love this stuff and of course I always enjoy a cheap treat.

Thanks Common Sense With Money!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

New Huggies Enjoy the Ride Code

I just received a coupon booklet from Huggies and it had an Enjoy the Ride rewards code in it worth 5 points! The code is: KCPBH-XMNRB-TDPGB. Go here to enter it. The code expires 10/31/09.

Haven't joined the Huggies Enjoy the Ride rewards program yet? If not, I'd recommend it. In fact, you don't even have to have a child to join because you can get the rewards in mailings, blogs, coupon inserts etc.

Basically, it is Huggies way of rewarding you for using their diapers. You simply log into your account and enter the code you found and then you can either use the codes to enter for sweepstakes or do what I like to do and play their instant win game. The prizes seem to change monthly. Check it out here.

Freebie: OB Tampons

Sign up here for a sample of OB tampons.

Freebie: Stayfree Pads

Go here for a sample of Stayfree pads.

Freebie: Playtex Gentle Glide

Go here for a sample of Playtex Gentle Glide tampons.

Freebie: Goodnights Underpants

Go here for a sample of Goodnights Underpants.

Schwan's Free Food

Just wanted to give you a heads up about a promotion Schwan's is doing. But before I go any further, I just want to make it clear that this promotion does not start until Sat., August 1.

Now to the promotion. The first 500,000 customers who log in on August 1st will get $10 of free food. A new customer is anyone who has not ordered from Schwan's in the past 14 weeks and lives in an existing Schwan's delivery route. Be sure to sign in early as this one will definitely go fast.

Giveaway Roundup

Mommy Snacks is doing a $100 Visa gift card back to school give away this week. But hurry...this one ends at 8pm July 31.

Stop by and wish SaraSays a happy 1st Bloggy birthday. While you are at it, enter her giveaway for a $20 Target gift card.

Todd and Erin are giving away a $50 gift certificate to three different winners. That should potentially help you snag a bargain online. Sounds good to me!

Check out the giveaway at Two of a Kind Working on a Full House. They are giving away a Storkcraft Tuscany Glider and Ottoman. Wow! We have been looking at buying something like this for our living room. I would LOVE to win!

Love Tupperware? I do! So I was excited when I saw the give away at Little People Wealth. She is giving away a $25 Tupperware gift certificate to one lucky winner. I would love to use this for some more modular mates to organize my pantry!

Free Betty Crocker Gluten Free Dessert Mix

Betty Crocker is giving away free $4 coupons for their Gluten Free Dessert Mix. Here's what you need to do to get one:

1. Call 1-800-446-1898 (the General Mills consumer services number) and select option "4" at the main menu.

2. Tell the customer service representative that answers that you are interested in the free gluten-free baking coupons.

3. You'll then need to answer several questions regarding your household's gluten usage and give your mailing address so that they can mail you the coupon.

This sounds like an excellent opportunity for those of you that have gluten free diets!

Thanks Tomorrow's Plight!

Walgreens Coupon

Well, I don't remember ever seeing Walgreens offer this coupon before but I won't complain! Go here to print off a Friends & Family coupon that is good for 15% off eligible store items and 20% off Walgreens brand items. Note though that the coupon is only good tomorrow, Friday, July 31, 2009.

Home Made Simple Coupon Booklet

Sign up here for the latest Home Made Simple coupon booklet. This book is one of my favorites and has over $30 worth of coupons this time. But hurry, they are bound to go fast!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Kraft Salad Dressing Coupon Update

I had posted here earlier about how you can print $1.50 Kraft Salad Dressing coupons. Well, when I printed mine and looked at them closer I noticed in the corner is says Redeem at Publix. So I was curious whether these were good anywhere else.

However after more research, it seems that they should work anywhere. They do say retailer coupon after all and there are people who have reported using them at Wal-Mart and other stores. So, just in case you were hesitant to use it because you noticed the Publix thing too, I thought I would clear it up.

Tasty Tuesday: Little Cheddar Meatloaves

This is our absolute favorite meat loaf recipe. It is incredibly flavorful and moist and we also like the fact that we can each have our own little meatloaf. I shaping the meatloaf into 8 small loaves also allows the sauce to flavor the meat better than normal meatloaf recipes do. This recipe also freezes well.
Little Cheddar Meat Loaves
1 egg
3/4 c. milk
4 oz. cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 c. oatmeal
1/2 c. chopped onion
1 tsp. salt
1 lb. ground beef
2/3 c. ketchup
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. mustard

Beat egg and milk; stir in cheese, oatmeal, onion and salt. Add beef and mix well. Shape into 8 loaves and place in greased 9 x 13 baking dish. Combine ketchup, brown sugar and mustard. Spoon over loaves. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.
Yield: 8 servings

Birthday Freebies

Well, Sunday was my little guy's 1st birthday. Can't believe it! Isn't that picture just priceless? We had so much fun watching him enjoy his gifts and cupcake. He's such an expressive little guy.

And now today is my birthday. I'm already feeling celebrated due to birthday phone calls, email, and cards. Not to mention that my sweet husband has kept my day interesting with a treasure hunt. I feel like a kid again!

In honor of my birthday, I thought I would let you know about some great freebies you can get on your birthday.

* Sign up for the Baskin Robbins Birthday Club and you'll get a coupon for a free scoop of ice cream for your birthday.
* Your child can receive a free kid's meal on their birthday when you sign them up for Club BK.
* Join Cold Stone Creamery's birthday club and receive a coupon for a free treat on your birthday.
* Sign your child up for CPKids and they can enjoy a free kids meal from California Pizza Kitchen.
And a deal not quite as good but one I'll mention anyway...
* Join the DQ Blizzard Fan Club and receive a coupon for a Buy 1 Get 1 free blizzard on your birthday.

Actually, most of these can be redeemed during a 2 week period over your birthday, so you don't need to worry about eating three ice cream desserts in one day!

Kraft Salad Dressing High Value Coupon

Go here to print a coupon for $1.50 off of Kraft Dressing. But hurry, they are guaranteed to go fast! Remember to hit the back button after the first coupon prints to print a second one.

This is one of those coupons that should get you free or almost free dressing. I know our Wal-mart has Kraft dressing for $1.59 and I'm sure there will be sales at other stores that would make this an amazing deal too.

Thanks MoneySavingMom for the heads up!

Freebies: Poise, L'Oreal and Gloves

Go here to get a 3 pack sample of Poise pads.
Does your job require latex gloves. Go here for a pair of Microflex Tranquility gloves.
Go to Freebies 4 Moms to learn how to get a free sample of L'Oreal Advanced Revitalift Deep-Set Wrinkle Repair.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Ways to Save: Improvise

You've probably already discovered that saving money takes some creativity. You can't always think inside the box. You have to be willing to try something different. You need to improvise.

I feel like I have learned a lot about saving money in my somewhat short life. This has been partly because I have been forced too learn to live on a little due to tight income during different times in my life and partly because I choose to save money. I believe that we are called to be good stewards of the gifts that God gives us and I also enjoy finding ways to save. To me it is a challenge. And so I have found different ways to improvise...doing things differently to save us money.

I thought I would share a few of the things I do and also a few things that have worked for some of my family and friends. Obviously, not all of these will be ideas that you may want to try, but hopefully it will help you get ideas and think outside the box about ways to save.

* Use plastic grocery bags as trashcan liners- I grew up doing this. It works for any small trashcans that you might have. And if you are like me, you have an over abundance of those bags around anyway!
* Improvise on other trash bags- I work occasionally at a pharmacy and the prescription vials come packaged in nice heavy bags inside a box. We always just threw those bags away and one day it suddenly dawned on me that this was crazy! Those bags are perfectly good and are sturdier than the same sized bags I buy for our trash at home. So every time I stop by my store, I clean them out of "vial bags" and therefore we very, very rarely ever need to buy trash bags.
* Use rags instead of paper towels- Maybe I am crazy, but I hate the idea of spending so much money on something that you just throw out. So I rarely ever use paper towels and instead use rags to clean up spills etc. When we have towels that are getting a little ratty I just cut them up and viola...we have some nice rags. (If you want them to stay nice longer, surge the edges.)
* Make your own buttermilk- Again, I think buttermilk is overpriced and besides, I almost never need a full-sized container for my recipes anyway. So I make my own. Simply add 1 Tablespoon white vinegar or lemon juice to 1 cup of milk, let it set for 5 minutes or until it starts to thicken and whohoo- you have yourself buttermilk!
* Use conditioner or shampoo instead of shaving cream- This is way cheaper if you use the cheap 99 cent stuff which works just fine. And the shampoo or conditioner works well as a moisturizer while you shave too.
* Use baby wash as a facial cleanser- We all know how expensive facial cleansers are. And we know how cheap baby wash is, not to mention gentle and mild. My sister had recommended that I try this a couple of months back and I have been very happy with it.
* Cheap substitutions for red and white wine in recipes- While I haven't had a chance to try this yet, I just recently read at that you can substitute white grape juice or apple juice for white wine and pure cranberry juice for red wine. I anxious to try it.
* Use ground turkey instead of ground beef- Okay, I'll admit, this isn't incredibly original. In fact many of you probably already do it. But what I want to suggest is this. To use 1/2 ground beef and 1/2 ground turkey. See, I tried 100% ground turkey and we just simply didn't care fore the flavor. Plus it made pathetic burgers. So I switched to doing half and half and we really like it. And besides it is healthier and cheaper than 100% ground beef.
* Print coupons on the blank side of used paper- I had considered doing this before but felt "cheap" and wasn't sure that stores would actually accept the coupon. But then I read this discussion online where people were talking about how they do this and decided, why not? And just for the record, I have had no one even give me a weird look when they take my printed- on-both-sides coupon. Just make sure there is no personal information on the coupon back!
* Use greeting card envelopes instead of regular ones- I used to work for 2 greeting card companies and after every holiday, we just threw out all the envelopes from the leftover seasonal cards. So I started bringing some home with me and using them for paying bills etc. You can do this too. Just watch for greeting card merchandisers in your local stores and when you see them ask if they would be willing to save the holiday envelopes for you. I did this for a number of people when I worked as a card merchandiser.

If you have more ideas I'd love to hear them. I'm all about learning new ways to save and think outside the box.

Freebies: FlixSticks

Try a sample of FlixSticks here.

Giveaway Roundup

I know that I usually post this on Thursdays but since I wasn't able to post very much last week and since this is one of my most read posts, I thought I would sneak in a few giveaways today.

The Freebie Blogger is giving away 20 $5 Starbucks' gift cards. Simply become her fan on Facebook or follow her on Twitter. I don't know about you, but I wouldn't mind enjoying a free frap!

Shop Amazon. com? Well Saving Cents in the City is giving away a $10 gift certificate. With all the different sales that Amazon has, this should help you snag a good deal.

Like Target? The Frugal Find is giving away a $20 Target gift card as well as some coupons.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Freebies: Gain Detergent and More

Get Gain with Febreeze here.

Go here for a sample of Total Blueberry Pomegranate Cereal.

Try Quaker True Delights here.

I'm Back

I just thought I would pop in to let you know that I am back home again. I had a good but busy time in Maryland with my folks. Mom and I made applesauce the one day, I had fun seeing some of my family, worked at my old job a little bit, claimed a few things from my grandparents estate, and tried to relax a little too. I missed my hubby and my home though and was very ready to come back home.

I was surprised to realize that this area feels more like home to me than where I grew up. Guess that is a good thing, but I hadn't quite expected to feel that way. We've only been married 2 1/2 years and when we moved here I pretty much knew no one. But now, it really does feel like home here and I am so thankful for that. I guess it took me going to my parent's for a couple of days to realize that. God has been good!

Vince was working hard while I was gone and it was exciting to see what all he got done to our house. Even though he didn't nearly get the kitchen finished, he really did make things look better around here. Now if he could only take another week off to finish the kitchen!

My parents are still here for the weekend and we are going to be celebrating our little son's first birthday tomorrow. Can't believe it, but it's true. He has made this last year a wonderful, exciting one. I've always loved children, but I never imagined how much joy your own child can bring you! He really has been a delightful gift.

So, I hope to get a little bit of posting done at least, but we'll see!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Good-bye for a Little

Well, I am almost ready to walk out the door. I am heading to my parent's place for a several days while Vince works at finally finishing our kitchen. In case you didn't figure it out by now, we bought a house in the city and are slowly fixing it up with the hopes of reselling it in a year or so. Anyway, we don't have too much more to do but the kitchen is one areas that hasn't been finished. He hopes to put down linoleum, paint, fix the ceiling, put in different light fixtures, and possibly redo the back splash as well as various random things in other parts of the house. I am so thankful for a hard working, handyman husband!

So anyway, Logan and I are going to spend several days at Mom and Dad's as I said. I am excited about being "home" again. Mom is going to help me do applesauce while I am there, we are going to go through some of my grandparent's things and I'm going to be bringing back a few pieces of furniture from them, I hope to see some other family, and maybe I'll even be able to just relax a little.

I feel the need for that. I picked green beans for four hours yesterday! And I was working at getting them in the freezer last night until 1 am and then was working on them again until just about an hour ago. My sweet husband helped me out for several hours last night, bless his heart. Otherwise I'd still be at it. Anyway, I am about sick of seeing beans but am excited about having 49 1/2 quarts in our freezer! Yes, we love green beans and I am so grateful to one of the ladies at our church who offered to let me pick her patch since she has more than she needs.

Well, I guess I sort of went down some bunny trails. I was just planning to let you know that I won't be updating probably until next Monday since I can't access Internet very easily while I am gone. Who knows though, maybe I'll find a way to post before then. At any rate, please don't quit stopping by...I'll be back before long! Have a great week and weekend.

Tasty Tuesday: Baked Cauliflower Parmesan

I got the basic idea for this recipe last summer when I had some cauliflower that needed to be used up. However, the original recipe that I used had some extra steps and I didn't quite like the "sauce" part so I changed it until it suited us. It quickly became our favorite way to eat cauliflower and we can almost clean up a whole recipe! Enjoy a pretty healthy way to eat cauliflower!

Baked Cauliflower Parmesan
1 head cauliflower, cut into bite sized pieces
salt to taste
1/4 c. butter, cut into pieces
2 tsp. mayonnaise
2 tsp. prepared mustard
1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese

Steam cauliflower for about 20 minutes; drain.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a mixing bowl, combine mayonnaise and mustard, then toss cauliflower in mixture.
Salt to taste.
Place cauliflower in greased baking dish.
Dot top with pieces of butter then sprinkle generously with Parmesan cheese.
Bake at 375 degrees F uncovered, for about 30 minutes, or until the cheese is brown.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Ways to Save: Using Your Freezer

One of the ways that I have saved is by using our freezer. And no, I am not referring to the one above our fridge. I am talking about our chest freezer...a big old beast of a thing. In fact, it is over 20 years old! We got it from my parents and were skeptical that it wouldn't last long but it is still running quite well and does a fine job! And just in case you are wondering, we didn't notice a jump in our electricity usage either when we got it.

Back to how we save with our freezer. There are a number of ways that I have saved money by using it. One is by buying things in bulk. I almost never buy shredded cheese, lunch meat, ground beef, or chicken in small quantities. For instance, I will buy shredded cheese in large 5 or 10 pound bags which I then divide out into quart sized freezer bags and put in the freezer. Shredded cheese freezes quite well and I have never noticed it seeming weird. When I am ready to use it I just get it out a couple of hours in advance and let it thaw. I can usually save around 50 cents a pound by doing this. In fact, I have also frozen blocks of cheese with good results as well. I'll try to do a post soon detailing how to do that.

I do the same thing with lunch meat, ground beef and chicken. I buy 10 lb. packages when it goes on sale and then divide it out into 1lb. portions for the ground beef, weeks supply of lunch meat per bag or several pieces per bag for the chicken and freeze them. This saves me anywhere from 20 to 50 cents a pound. That might not sound like much but you multiply that by 10 and it becomes a bit more significant!

When I need to brown ground beef for a recipe I also like to do double the amount I need and then freeze the extra. It makes it so handy to have that when I am in a hurry to make something for supper. Plus it saves electricity and time too!

Using my freezer to store frozen vegetables and fruit that I buy in season is another way that I save money. Some of the things I freeze are green beans, corn, pumpkin, peppers (for on pizza), lima beans, peas, peaches, applesauce, blueberries and strawberries. I love freezing my own produce or produce that I get from local growers. I know what kind of product I am getting and I can get it cheaper in season than I can if I try to buy it off season when I am wanting the product. Also, by buying large quantities I save money too.

I also save money by using my freezer to store things that I stockpile. For instance, maybe I found bread for sale really cheap. I will buy several loaves and freeze what we won't use immediately. Or maybe there is a sale on Kashi frozen waffles and with coupons I can get them for 20 cents. Well, since I have my big freezer I can get 10 boxes, use them as we need them, and have some cheap meals.

I also save time and electricity by making large batches of cookies, bread, rolls, etc. and freezing what we won't eat immediately. Again, I love the convenience of being able to pull something out of the freezer when I am in a hurry. I also make double recipes of casseroles and soups and freeze them too.

One of the keys to saving money by using your freezer is to stay organized. It is very easy to just sort of throw things in and soon you have no idea what you have and therefore can't efficiently use your frozen food.

If you have a freezer use it! No, you won't become rich fast by utilizing these ideas but it will help you save. And I am a firm believer that every little bit helps!

Freebie: Always Infinity

Well, another sample is available for Always Infinity pads here. I seriously think that the joke I talked about here is not so much joke anymore, but more the truth!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Kmart: $25 Gift Card with Prescription Transfers

Money Saving Mom has a post here explaining how this works. Not as good as some prescription/gift card deals but still not bad. And remember, some CVS stores honor other store coupons!

$1 Crest Pro-Health Coupon

I just discovered a link here to request that a $1 Crest Pro-Health coupon be mailed to you. I don't remember seeing this posted anywhere yet, so I wanted to let you know about it. Coupled with an Extra Bucks deal at CVS or a Register Reward deal at Walgreens, this should make for some free or almost free toothpaste.

Speaking of which, I get so much toothpaste free anymore. I can't remember when the last time was that I paid for some. So, you might be wondering, what do I do with it all?

Well, first of all, we use some obviously. Then I hand it out to any of our family that needs it. If I still have some left, which I often do, I take it to our church and it is used in health care packs that we send to 3rd world countries. Another option would be to donate it to your local Homeless Shelter.

Freebies: Playtex Sport and more

Just thought I would offer a few suggestions for doing these things. Set up a free yahoo or gmail email address just for samples etc. so you don't get bogged down with any emails the companies send. And download makes filling these things in a cinch and it is free! Also, remember, you only need to fill in the parts that have an * in order to get the sample.

Playtex Sport sample here.

Try PureVia all natural sweetener here.

Vaseline Aloe Fresh sample here. (Costco membership not required)

And don't forget about signing up for your free chocolate bar today here!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Giveaway Roundup

Moms By Heart and STL Mommy are both offering 1 year subscriptions to All You magazine when you enter their give away. I highly recommend All You. It is full of great ideas for living simply and frugally and it has lots of wonderful coupons in as well.

Want a chance to win a Wal-Mart gift card? Budget Saving Mom is giving away a $25 one and Coupon Dad is offering a $100 one. I'm sure you have lots of ideas of how you could use that!

Frugal Girls is giving away a prize pack of Hormel Natural Choice Lunch Meats. Sounds yummy to me. I don't usually bother to enter a give away that is not for gift cards or something "bigger" but this looks really good and all that meat would definitely stretch our grocery budget.

If you want options, check out the give away at Coupons, Deals, and More, because you've got them. You can pick between various prize packs that are all pretty much for different drug store gift cards. You know how I like that! Hurry though, this one ends July 16th!

Mommy Snacks is giving away $25 Sonic gift cards to 6 different winners. This one ends the 17th. Sounds perfect for a supper on the run when we are out shopping or even just for a cold refreshing drink to cool off.

Need some office supplies? Frugal Living and Having Fun is giving away a $10 Staples gift card.


In case you are wondering, this is what I was looking at for a several hours yesterday afternoon.

One of the older ladies from church wondered if I wanted to come pick their green beans. She simply didn't feel like messing with them this week she said. I was more than thrilled to take her up on her offer! It took me maybe 15 to 20 minutes to pick the beans and they were beautiful ones. I got 4 quarts from them which I blanched and froze- such an easy thing to do.

We love green beans and so far since we are married I have never had to buy green beans. Someone always has extra that they don't want and offer to me. I just freeze them as I get them and then we have yummy green beans all winter long. And yes, we love eating them fresh too. One meal last summer Vince and I cleaned up probably a good 1 and 1/2 quarts by ourselves!

I also froze 20 lbs. of blueberries. We love blueberries and I can get 20 lbs. for $27 to $30 around here. I saved us some for fresh eating of course and then froze the rest. Throughout the rest of the year, I'll enjoy using them to make different baked things, blueberry pancakes or french toast, and our favorite way, still frozen blueberries mixed with frozen peaches and strawberries.

I like freezing (and canning) my own food in case you were wondering. I enjoy it and I like to know what goes into my jars, bags, or boxes. And really, once you learn how to do it, it is rather simple too.

Freebies: Metamucal and more

Found several new samples today. Have fun signing up for them.

*Metamucil Clear & Natural here. If you have not yet signed up for Proctor & Gamble do it today. You will have access to printable coupons, samples and more.

*Have you tried the Always Infinity pads yet? Get a free sample here.

*GoodNights boxers here.

*Pampers Potty Training Kit here.

*Rachel Ray Nutrish premium dog food here.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Tasty Tuesday: Mocha Dessert

I've always been a sucker for desserts and they are my favorite thing to make too. That is all good and fine for my taste buds, but not so good and fine for my waistline. Oh well, it is all about moderation right?

We had dinner guests Sunday and I had fun setting the table with china and all my beautiful dishes. It was also fun making all the different foods but of course my favorite was the dessert. I served mixed frozen fruit(strawberries, peaches, and blueberries all of which I freeze myself) and Mocha dessert...a refreshing cool combo for a warm day! And it was definitely a hit with everyone.

Mocha Dessert
1 1b. 2 oz. Oreo cookies
1 (3.4 oz.) box instant chocolate pudding
1 (3.4 oz.) box instant vanilla pudding
3 cups milk
16 oz. Cool Whip
3 Tablespoons (heaping) instant coffee granules
3 Tablespoons butter, melted

Crush Oreo cookies and mix with melted butter. Save 1 cup and set aside. Press remainder into a 9 x 13 inch pan.
Mix coffee, milk, and puddings then add 1 cup Cool Whip. Spread on top of crust. Chill for 1 hour.
Spread remainder of Cool Whip on top of pudding mixture. Sprinkle with the reserved 1 cup of cookie crumbs.

Variation: use 2 boxes instant vanilla pudding and add chocolate syrup instead...this is a little less sweet.
Or for a really sweet, really rich taste go with 2 boxes of instant chocolate pudding.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Ways to Save: Postage

Spending money on postage is one of those necessary evils. Being the lover of deals that I am, it always bothers me when I have to shell out money for something that I can never save on such as gas, stamps, parking meters etc.

Well, about 1 1/2 years ago I discovered that I could save on postage. Rather significantly too. And you just might be surprised how: Ebay. Yup, you got it. Ebay. For instance, if you go to Ebay and put "stamps 41" in the Find box, you'll come up with a number of deals. When I did that just now I saw several options for 100 41 cent stamps, one of which was selling for $37 and another for $36. Do the math and you'll find that you save $4 to $5 (assuming the shipping is free, which it often is).

That is a pretty significant savings on stamps I think. All you need to do is buy some 3 cent stamps and you are all set to mail for cheap. Well, sort of. At least it is cheaper.

If you are concerned that it will take you forever to use 100 stamps don't worry. Split them with a friend or just be patient. I have often found smaller amounts for sale as well. It just takes a little willingness to wait.

If you want to make the deal even sweeter, go to Ebates and shop through there. If you are new to Ebates, you'll automatically earn $5 just for signing up. Once you are on the Ebates site, go to the "Select a Store" option, select Ebay and you are on your way to earning 3% back on your stamp purchase (or any other Ebay purchase for that matter).

Another way to save on postage is to pay your bills online. We do this for almost all of our bills and it saves us a significant amount on postage. One thing to be aware of though are payment fees. There are some companies that charge you extra to do online bill payments and of course that is just not worth it!


Remember my Giveaway Roundup post last week? Well, I am so excited because I just won the $10 gift card that Addicted to Couponing was giving away. :)

Hmmm....I'm thinking of all the things that I can have fun buying with that.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Free Vitamins at Weis Markets

Does your child take a vitamin supplement? If so, check out this deal that Weis Markets is offering.

Any child up to 7 years of age can get a FREE children's vitamin with fluoride when you take a prescription for that to your Weis store. When you get your prescription filled, you will receive a card that you present every time the prescription is filled. The card is good for use once a month for one year from the date it was issued. So, essentially you will get a year's worth of vitamin's with fluoride for your child FREE!

While I could find no information on their website about this, I do have a pamphlet detailing this offer that I picked up at their pharmacy counter last week . If you have questions about this program, please call your local Weis store.

Giveaway Roundup

To Save a Penny is giving away a $20 Starbuck's gift card. You know we all LOVE those!

Need grocery money? Frugal Freebies and Deals has a $100 gift card for Kroger or one of their affiliate stores that they are giving away. Now THAT would buy us a lot of groceries!

Smart Moms Save is starting up her blog and is giving away a $30 gift card to either Walmart or Target, the choice is yours. What's not to love about that? Be sure to check out her blog. It looks like a promising one.

Want another chance to win a gift card to Target? Addicted to Couponing is doing a $10 Target gift card giveaway.

Just discovered a blog that I IMMEDIATELY loved called The Suburban Jungle. I just liked her blogging style and was fascinated by many of her posts. Anyway, the give away this blog is having is for 2 coupons for a free box of Kashi granola. Now around here we think granola is the greatest and although I generally make my own, I know that Kashi cereal is good and good for you so why would I pass it up? Plus it's free food, right?

I'm on the lookout for some comfy shoes for Logan so I am excited about the give away at Go Graham Go which is for a pair of toddler shoes from They look excellent, a mixture of great looks, practicality and comfort. Check them out.

Be it Ever so Humble is giving away any product of your choice under $100 from I'm thinking we'd have a hard time narrowing it down to one item they have so many amazing options.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

And Yet Another Freebie

Yes, I really do have another freebie for today! You can go here and dowload a free audiobook called Crazy Love: Overwhelmed By a Relentless God by Francis Chan. Just use coupon code JUL2009 when you go to check out. This offer is good until July 31.

I downloaded this today and have started to listen to it and so far have been very blessed and have been challenged by what I heard.

Money Earning Ideas

When I became a stay at home mom when our precious son Logan was born almost one year ago I had lots of mixed feelings. I was very excited about being able to stay at home and take care of my little guy but I also knew I was going to miss helping boost our budget by earning money.

Maybe that sounds funny to you, but I honestly enjoyed knowing that I was helping earn some of our income. Now before I go any further, let me say this. My husband has never pressured me into feeling like I need to work. In fact, he really pushed for me to just relax and stay at home and let the money earning up to him. But when Logan was born, I found I really missed feeling like I was helping out our budget by earning money and so I decided to throw myself into doing all that I can to be a thrifty, frugal stay at home mom. And as I did this, I was thrilled to discover some little ways that I could earn money while staying at home. I'd like to tell you about a few of them.

One of my favorite ways to earn a little money is YouData. Basically with YouData you get paid to view advertising- well actually it is usually websites. Typically you will get paid anywhere from 10 to 20 cents per advertisement. And the neat thing is that they automatically deposit your earnings every Friday into your PayPal account. When I first started with YouData I got lots of advertisements and would easily make several dollars a week. But lately it has slowed down and I was starting to get discouraged. But then about two weeks ago, YouData informed it's customers that they expect to soon be able to up the advertisements again. Apparently their customer base grew faster than they had expected and they couldn't keep up with getting advertisers fast enough.

When you sign up for YouData they will ask for a phone number to text you a verification code. Don't worry though, they will not call you again. And if you don't have text capabilities, call them and they should be able to give you a code over the phone. I have found them very helpful and workable.

Another way that I have enjoyed earning a little money is through Swagbucks. At Swagbucks, you earn points for using their search engine. I simply downloaded their toolbar so that every time I want to use the internet to search for something I have the chance to earn Swag Bucks. I don't search that often, but I usually will win Swag Bucks once or twice a day. If you are lucky, you also might find Swagcodes on Facebook, Twitter, and other sites that you can redeem for Swag Bucks. You can also earn Swag Bucks by shopping at various stores listed on their website.

It's amazing how fast Swag Bucks add up. And when you have enough, you can redeem them for gift cards, cash, or all sorts of prizes. Swagbucks is so simple and is a fun little way that I have found to earn some extra money for us.

I have been a member of Surveyhead for over a year now and really enjoy it. This is a company that pays you to do surveys. What I really like about them is that they tell you approximately how long the survey will take and what you will be paid before you do the survey. This is invaluable to me because then I can decide if it is worth my time.

Surveyhead often has high dollar surveys available. Just two days ago I did one for $4 that took me a little less than 10 minutes! And I did one several months back that earned me $10 and didn't take long at all. Several other neat things about Surveyhead is that they pay you through PayPal and you get a $5 sign up bonus.

The down side is that you can't collect your earnings until you reach $25. But, I have been amazed at how fast you reach that.

These are just some of the little ways that I have earned us money. I have several other programs that I do as well, but currently these are my favorite. I have earned several hundred dollars a year by doing these and similar things and enjoy that. I am in the process of testing several other programs to see if I like them and I will try to update you as I find more that I like and feel are worthwhile.

Freebie: Liption Tea

Yet another free sample today! Call 1-888-435-3639 to receive a coupon for a free box of Lipton Tea. You will need to follow the prompts once you call. Thanks MoneySavingMom!

More Freebies

Get a free sample of Fiber One cereal and bar you'll get some coupons as well! Thanks Freebies 4 Mom.

Also get a sample of Dunkin Donuts coffee here. Thanks to A Frugal Friend for this one.

Freebies: Body Wash, Huggies and More

Just discovered a number of new sample offers that are available.
Go here for a sample of some great looking Nivea men's bodywash.
And here for some Nivea women's bodywash.
Try out the new Pure and Natural Huggies by getting a sample here.

Go here for a paper towel sample.

Know someone with joint problems? Check out this sample for Triple Flex here.
And here is a sample of Prilosec OTC.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Tasty Tuesday: Crunchy Thyme Potatoes

This simple and fast dish is one that we absolutely love, especially with meat loaf. Reminiscent of home fries, I think Crunchy Thyme Potatoes are even yummier. I got the basic recipe from a church cookbook I have and then combined several other recipes and my own ideas to create this recipe.

Crunchy Thyme Potatoes
4 large baking potatoes
1/3 c. butter
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 to 1 tsp. salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tsp. paprika
1/2 c. dry bread crumbs

Melt butter in a jelly roll pan in a 375 degree oven.
Add a single layer of potatoes cut lengthwise into 1/4 inch thick slices; turn once in butter.
Mix remaining ingredients and sprinkle over top of potatoes.
Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes or until done.

* For variation you can also sprinkle with Parmesan cheese or shredded cheese. This is a very versatile recipe and I have tried different combinations of seasonings and we have enjoyed many variations.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Giveaway Roundup

Here are some of my favorite giveaways this week.

The Coupon Geek is giving away a $25 Visa gift card! Oh yeah! I can think of all sorts of places I could use that.

Drop by My Red Apron and comment on a way to save money and you'll be entered into a drawing for a $10 Wal-Mart gift card. Now I am pretty sure you wouldn't have trouble spending that one!

Amber Lee has a giveaway at her photography blog right now too. You can enter to win a $25 Starbuck's gift card. Yum! That would make for some sweet dates for hubby and me.

Two Monkeys and a Washtub (don't you love that creative name?) is giving you options. You can choose between a $25 gift card to Target, CVS, or Walgreens. Just let her know something fun you'll be doing this summer. If I win, it'll be CVS for me. I could make $25 go twice that far with all their extra buck deals!

Need a car seat for your little one? Two of a Kind Working on a Full House is giving away a super looking Recaro this week as part of her Baby Bash which starts today. Check it out.