Tuesday, December 28, 2010

So far so good on stuff for next year

I did not make it to Target Sunday morning it was just more trouble than I wanted to drive across town before church. I did run to Walgreen's after church and picked up a few fun things for next years stocking for Scotty. Then I went ahead and ran into Kroger for a few minutes. They had some good deals with coupons on Charmin, Duracell batteries, and a few other things. I also got some ground turkey for $1.49 a pound on clearance. It's hard to find it for anything close to that price. I saved over half and was very happy with my finds. :) Monday I finally made it to Target and did find a few fun stocking stuffers like fun balls. They also had some Creme Brulee almonds that looked yummy and for $3 for about a pound and a half it was a great deal. I am waiting on some of the stuff until they go at least 75% off because they have so much there are bound to be some left. So back next week to check that out. I also got some wrapping paper for Scotty's stuff for next year. Trucks and cars! I also went over to Bed Bath and Beyond. I had planned to get a kid camera for Scott but after reading some reviews decided it wasn't a good deal after all. I got Scotty a new ball for now because he was obsessed. I found a kit for making bouncy balls for next year, a set of Shrinky dinks for next year, the coolest set of mini lincoln logs that are supposed to be party favors but they are so cute so I will save them until Scott is big enough. I also picked up a new door mat with snowmen since my old Christmas one is to tall to use now that we have a storm door. I spent about $12 thanks to the fact my sister works there and we got an extra 20% off the already reduced prices. I still need to go to Aldi and to Meijer this week but am not getting much. I used most of the grocery budget for next years Christmas. :) Good thing we have a good stock of food on hand. This is how I don't break the budget at the end of year. I start buying after Christmas and by the next year we are ready go without going into debt.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Avoiding the stores if at all possible

This time of year just makes me crazy to try and get in and out of stores so I do my best to stay away. I didn't really go back out last week to do anything else. My find of the week was a Radio Flyer wagon on sale for just $49 on Amazon with free shipping. I had a $10 gift card from some reviews I wrote and was able to cash in some money I had from doing online surveys for another $16 so I ended paying about $26 for a nice new wagon. We had one but the wheel broke and it was not really the kind I wanted so I sort of used it as an excuse to buy a new one. At that price I can't go to wrong. I have already put it together and it is ready for Christmas morning. Now if I can get the trampoline put together on Christmas Eve we will be in business. I bought it from a yard sale for about $25 if I remember correctly I know it wasn't more than that though. It thankfully is most of the way put together so it shouldn't be to big of a deal other than I don't have the instructions. Maybe I should see if I can find those online.

This week I did most of my shopping at Sam's club. Every 3-4 weeks I go out there to pick up some stuff I have used up that I cannot find cheaper anywhere else. I got frozen strawberries for smoothies, peanut butter, a rotisserie chicken, 6lbs of ground beef, and I know there was something else for $40. I spend a lot when I go there but at least I know the stuff lasts a long time. :) Well except the chicken but it's a great deal and we get several meals from one usually more.

I did run into Aldi and pick up some bananas, oranges, some coffee for my husband to take to work ($5 for a huge can) hopefully it is good. On top of that I had a shop so I picked up a few things such as more honey nut cheerios on sale with coupons for about 72 cents a box and some other stuff like gum that was on sale. I also am using these shops to get my coke for free. I spent about $3 more than I made for the shop but I also did a pizza shop and made $5 on that so I actually was still $2 ahead on that one. I combined the two in a neighboring town so I saved on gas as well.

I also picked up the iron on transfers to finish the capes for Scotty's birthday party and a present for a friend from Amazon.

This morning I ran to Rite Aid to pick up a few deals I had read about. I needed toothpaste and they had the kind I wanted on sale and I had a store coupon and a manf coupon (to bad I got home and realized it had not been taken off my receipt) I got some stuff for Brad with coupons as well. While I was there I took a look at their toys that were 60% off and found a fun tent with a tunnel that we will hopefully use as a gift for just $8. It gave me the option of using a $4 off coupon so technically I only paid $4 for it so I am happy. I also got some hot wheels on sale for 50 cents each to save for when Scotty is a little bit bigger. If I stock up on sales I won't end up paying full price later. :) So pretty much I have spent my money for the week but that's OK because I don't really want to go anywhere anyway. I could have picked up another shop but being in the grocery store this week just does not sound like fun to me the one on Monday afternoon was insane!

I hope that everyone has a wonderful Christmas. I am excited to get out after Christmas and start finding bargains for next year. Hopefully I will hit Target before church on Sunday for Stocking stuffers for next year. They go fast so I want to get there early. Then as they start to clearance more out I will get some other stuff as well most likely. It's the time to stock up for all those holiday needs next year for sure. The middle of January also brings lots of sales and deals. It's a great time to stock up on toys at Target and Toys R Us for sure. It's also a good time to stock up on winter stuff in that next size up for those little ones. Not only do regular stores have sales but so do the consignment stores so I try to hit them when they are 75% off. It's as good as yard sale prices then. Time to take inventory of what I already have to I won't get more than I need.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Some great deals and trying not to spend as much

I am doing my best to figure out how to save even more money due to the fact I am not sure how much our health insurance and other things are going up for the next year. I wish they would just tell me so I know. I am thinking I might cancel our home phone. We don't use it all that much and it makes my husband upset when it rings we don't have caller ID on it and for some reason even though we are on the Do Not Call list they still call constantly with you have been selected to receive a free_____________!

Anyway onto the deals and savings. Last week I had another couple of mystery shops so was able to get the deals from mega sale with only a couple of dollars out of pocket. I stocked up on honey nut cheerios for my husband and a few other things. I did not hit Meijer as their deals were not good last week. I did go to Aldi and pick up the basics and the bakery store for 2 loaves of whole wheat bread, a pack of whole wheat buns, and a package of whole grain crumb treats for less than $5. They have some great clearance deals there. :)

I spent some of my weekly  on a gift for my dad for Christmas. We got him a personalized picture from from personalization mall and it turned out great. Now I just need to print the picture to put in it.

I found a deal to get 50 free prints from snapfish with free shipping with my new camera that comes in handy.

I picked up my pajamas at JcPenney for Scott. They are very cute and worth the $3.17 I paid for each one for sure. :)

I also picked up another deal on Amazon for a Color Wonder drawing set with sounds that I think will be great for Scott for next year. It was around $10 and there is a $3 rebate for it that I will mail off for. It's still on sale if anyone is interested. Let me know if you need the link for the rebate.

This week I have already done most of my grocery shopping. I knew it was going to be cold and nasty due and one of my deals needed to be quick because my coupons were expiring on Wednesday and I was afraid they wouldn't restock by then. I got 8 1/2 gallons of free Smart Balance milk and 2 16oz bottles of olive oil absolutely free. :) Meijer is an amazing place some times. Stacking those mealbox coupons with the manf coupons is awesome. :) They also had eggs for 99 cents a dozen and since they have been so high lately I was very happy about that. I used a 55 cent off two to get an even better deal. I also got 3 jars of Classico Pasta sauce for just 33 cents a jar. It was on sale buy 2 for $4 get one free and I used 3 $1 off coupons to make it just $1 for all three. It depends on the cashier you get to whether they will let you use all 3 coupons or not. It's not illegal to use a coupon on a free item but some places/cashiers will not let you do it.

Kroger really doesn't have any great deals this week but I had a shop so I did pick up a few things. I was also lucky to find some closeout deals that will help with the budget later on. Scott has super sensitive skin so I like to use the Aveeno bath products for him and they are so pricey. They were clearing out the moisturizing shampoo which I am pretty sure is close to what the bath soap is like so I got two bottles for less than the price of one. I wish I had coupons but they are pretty rare for Aveeno.

Our big save last week was getting the Children's museum membership I had been planning to buy anyway for $25 off. Now we have free admission to not only our museum locally but the one in Cincinnati and COSI in Columbus as well! Very very happy about that one. Also a lot of other ones throughout the US if we do any traveling as well.

Soon I hope to start post some other things I do to save money besides looking for bargains. I hope they will be helpful to everyone. Since it was just approved that our water bill that is already high is going up as well as probably the electric bill and I know our insurance I am going to need every single penny I can save. :(

Til next time happy saving!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

More online deals

In case anyone isn't already following the deals I post on Facebook so you can get some of the great deals too look up "Marty and Stacey Save you Money" and "like" the page so it will show up in your news feed.

I did find a few more deals online this week and skipped Kroger all together this week since the sale should continue next week. Lots of shops in next 2 weeks which will help with the budget.

I did hit Meijer last night and was happy they fixed the problem with the money they promised on my Mperks card so I got an extra $2 off my order. My husband loves the fake crab meat but I won't buy it at $3 a pack. This week is was on sale for $1 so I picked up a few for his lunches. They also had 3lbs of Yukon Gold potatoes for $1 so I got some of those as well. YUM

I was also happy to find that they had the little Christmas ducks that Walmart was sold out of to finish Scotty's collection. :) They were only 99 cents.

I got a set of Melissa and Doug Magnet Joey Dress up for Scott for maybe next year. It's hard to find good deal on boy toys like that. They make so few and they sell out so fast. I paid only $6.50 with the great free shipping on Amazon. I am loving my Amazon Mom right now. They give me free shipping just for being a mom and buying baby products IE diapers that they discount and drop at my door less than 2 days later. Oh and as a Christmas gift they gave me another free month. :) Oh and for every order of $25 or more of baby products they give me another free month. Smart of them to keep me buying. :)

I also got a great deal on some pajamas for Scott they had a great $10 off $10 coupon that I was able to use twice and ship the item to the store so no shipping. I paid $3.17 for each one. Now that is my kind of deal. Unfortunately the coupon was gone fast and a lot of people couldn't get the deal not to mention the site was moving so slow and if I not been up early I wouldn't have got the deal either. Can't wait to get them.

I would encourage you to check the paper and watch stuff online to see what kind of fun stuff your area has going on. We have gotten free pics with Santa, a free Christmas event that would have been great if my child was older, and a free build a train Workshop just in the last week oh and the police made Scotty an ID card with his pic and thumbprint just in case for which I am very thankful. I know that TRU also has free events every month or so as well as Home Depot so that would be a couple of websites to check out.

Until next time happy saving!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Thank you birthday

Classic Blue Thank You 5x7 folded card
Unique party invitations and greeting cards by Shutterfly.
View the entire collection of cards.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Black Friday and some other shopping

Last week was a busy week and I did not spend a lot on Groceries. I had two mystery shops which helped me get the deals I wanted without spending money out of pocket which was nice because it left me with money to do some more Christmas Shopping. :) I did not see anything worth going to Meijer for last week so I completely skipped it. This week there are two or three things worth going for so I will head over there at some point to pick them up. I need to make it back into Rite Aid to use my $9 in coupons for another pack of diapers. I also need to find my receipt so I can return the size 3's I had to get to finish the deal and exchange them. It's not always easy saving money. :) I did my usual Monday run to Aldi and picked up a few things we were out of and my usual bananas for the monkeys in this house. I also needed to go to Sam's club. I was trying to save some money by using up some powdered dishwasher detergent my dishes were coming out with a film on them so I gave up. Sam's carries the huge containers of Electrosol Finish that works best. 90 washes for less than $14. It will last a long time and I will be happy with my clean dishes. We also picked up a Rotisserie chicken to make some chicken pot pie with. While I was there I found some roast marked down. Angus beef roast for $2.30 a pound which is a good price. I brought them home and froze them and will pull them back out when I am ready to throw them in the crock pot.

The other thing to check into if you have a Sam's club or other club membership and you need a lot of gift cards for Christmas that is the place to do it. I was able to get 4 Itunes cards worth $60 for only $48. I still need a 5th card and I will get it somewhere else for full price but at least I saved $12 and will have happy nieces and nephews.

I have decided that I am not cut out to be an in store black friday shopper. Toys R Us has some great prices on stuff I really wanted for Scotty. I knew I was not going to out and stand in line on Thanksgiving night in the pouring rain and fight for the things I wanted. I had been in the store on Wednesday and they didn't even have what I wanted but swore up and down they would by the next day. I wasn't even sure I believed them. So I sat at my computer watching the website since most things were supposed to be on sale there as well. At 9:55 they marked it all down even the stuff that wasn't going on sale in the store until 5am. I did a free trial of a shopping service to get free shipping on my items. So without anything more out of pocket I got just what I wanted sitting on my bed in my pajamas. Got the Wonder Pets School house that I had been wanting for Scott for a while for $10, a fold and go train for the same price. Gifts from his aunt and uncle and they didn't go broke. I also got him the Bugsby reader to go with the Wonder Pets book my friend picked up for him on clearance and the little Engine the Could book to go with it since he loves trains. All for under $40.

Friday morning I thought I will just head out and see if they still had this little cake I wanted for Scott's birthday at Target. I knew it was going to be bad when I got there because you couldn't really park in the parking lot but I had no idea it was because you couldn't check out not because it was crazy with people shopping. It was at least a two hour wait to check out. I didn't see the cake on the shelf anyway and there was no way I was standing in that line to check out. So off the Build a Bear I went to see if they had the cute light up moose for $5. Thankfully they did but even with just 10 or so people in front of me I waited at least 15 minutes to check out. I thought about checking out a couple of other stores but there were so many people in the mall around 6:30 that I just came home. I got online and looked up the cake and found it on Amazon where I have free shipping for just 50 cents more so I got it too. All in all it was a good deal day but more online than in store and I was happy. Next year I think most of my deals will be done online! Christmas Shopping to begin right after Christmas this year for next year. :) I got a lot of my stuff for this year that way last year. All my stocking stuffers for Scott were bought that way as well as some of his gifts.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Almost free tag books and more grocery runs

So many great deals to be had the last couple of weeks. I know that Black Friday will warrant some more but I am not sure if I am up for facing the crowds or not. My little boy is worth the effort though. Over the weekend I ran to Meijer where I just picked up a few items but was annoyed that my $2 off m-perks coupon that I took the time to add and punch in the code did not come off. Thankfully customer service gave me the $2 back anyway. I had a coupon for a free Healthy steamers meal so I got that. A couple of boxes of butter for the holiday baking since it was on sale. Some bags of frozen veggies for making chicken pot pie (since I stocked up on pie crust) and vegetable soup since it is starting to get cold and there is nothing  better than homemade soup in the crockpot and bread in the bread maker. :) See winter isn't all bad.

My husband killed his computer that we bought off of Craigslist over the summer and it was going to cost more to fix it than to buy a used one from Laptop exchange so I let them take the old one for $20 and got him another one. That is a great business. They take in old ones and make sure they are working and resell them. Since buying a new one was not an option this was a great choice for us. You can even get a warranty on them which is great. I hate when my husband uses all the memory on my computer surfing you-tube and then leaves it for me to reboot the next day before I can even check my email. This is a marriage saver for us. :)

I also ran to Rite aid again and used more coupons as well as the $9 in bucks they gave me for 3 more packs of diapers so for less than $5 I got 3 more packs. I love the deals on diapers at Rite Aid. I only wish they had more in stock so it was not so hard to get the kind/size you want or need. I still have one pack I need to exchange for a bigger size. Might have to try that tonight if I have to go by there to drop off the little boy I have been watching. I also have $9 in bucks to use so I might pick up another pack of diapers with that and a coupon.

Sunday I had another shop and even with the $14 I found enough deals to still spend another $7 but it was good stuff. I rolled my $3 coupon from Pillsbury for 4 more cans of Grands cinnamon rolls and 2 more cans of  crescent rolls for 41 cents a can. It also gave me another $3 coupon that I plan to use for some more pie crust and crescents tomorrow. I remembered that I needed batteries for my car remote so that was $3.99 plus tax of my overage but I need those and finding a deal was not really an option on something like a rare battery. At least they were not super expensive. I found some rubber spatulas for cleaning out bowls that appear to be good ones for $1 each so I picked up two of those. (Some times having to stay in the store for 30 minutes can be a bad thing because I have time to browse and possibly spend more.) I also picked up some yeast rolls with a coupon and a sale for $1.50. Not an amazing price for what they are but at 1/2 off a good deal anyway. I also had to get an under cart item (coke) and a deli item to fulfill my obligation.

I then ran to Target to pick up some Tag books. Even though I have not bought the older kid version of the Tag reader the books were cheap enough that I got them and will get a reader when I find a great deal. I have the Tag Jr one for Scott now and most of the books they have for it I got for $1 each at Walmart with coupons and a clearance deal. There were $5 coupons available so I printed two from each of our computers and some of the books were just $9.99 and one I got was $13.99 they were then BOGO free so for $3.99 plus $1.44 tax I got 4 books that normally cost $13.99 each. :) I love a great deal.

Today we went to Aldi. I am finding more and more that mostly what I am buying there is fresh fruit and veggies. Their prices are hard to beat and I can't get coupons on them most of the time so it's hard to save on them at the regular stores. Other stuff I can use coupons on are cheaper with a sale and coupons at other stores. Even bread I can find a good markdown on or run to the bread bakery for cheaper bread. I also gave in and bought Scotty a train there today. It as a really good price and every time he says Whooo Whooo for the whistle I just fall a little bit more in love with him so it was $7 well spent. Why else to save save money other than to be home but to spoil my boy just a little bit. :) So the deals of the day at Aldi were celery for 79 cents, bananas are always 39 cents a pound, pineapples for $1.49 so I got two, oh and 10lbs of potatoes for $1.49, and two bags of cranberries for 99 cents a bag.

Tomorrow I have another shop to do and two more pizza shops his week. So more freebies for a little bit of work. If you are interested in Mystery shopping let me know and I will tell you about the companies I do shops for.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Great trip to Kroger and things not to do while your toddler is misbehaving. :(

With the babysitting I have been doing I have not been going out as much so don't spend as much which is for sure a positive thing. This morning I ran into Target because I had heard of a deal or two that would be worth getting if they had them unfortunately the one I really wanted was not marked down yet so the deal won't work most likely since it ends on Wednesday. I also wanted to look at the Leapster Explorer for Scott for Christmas. He wouldn't even look at it and showed no interest so I think I will just save my money. He just kept looking at the other shelves yelling truck. Well we know what he likes. I have read mixed reviews on it anyway so it's probably for the best. I might go back Sunday or Monday if they really do have their Tag books BOGO free. I have printed $5 off coupons on them which would make them anywhere from free to $2 a piece so not a bad deal at all.

I also recently discovered that even though I don't own a Kindle I can download the Kindle for PC to my computer and can get all the great free books they offer right on my computer no Kindle needed. So I have been watching blogs and today clicked on a book I was interested in and Scott started to misbehave and jump on the couch and I hit click without checking to make sure it was still free. All the sudden I had bought a book that was $11.99 with on click and could not figure out a way to get rid of it or get my money back and Scott was still misbehaving which was stressing me out. Finally got him calmed down and called Amazon where they promised to refund my money. We will see if that happens. So I have decided I cannot do that if he is up and especially if he is not behaving at the time. :( Why in the world they think one click is a good thing I have no idea. I would rather have the option of turning it off so that kind of thing does not happen any more.

I have been working on getting my coupons together for some of the Pillsbury/General Mills deals at Kroger this week. From my shopping trip the other day I had my first $3 catalina. So today I went in and two separate orders so that I could get two different deals. My first one I needed to buy just 6 of the pillsbury items to get the cat but 8 items to get the correct prices on the items since it was a mega deal buy 4 get $4 off. So I got 6-2 packs of pie crust and 2 boxes of Chocolate Cheerios. After the $8 off each of the items was just $1.49. I had on .50/2 e-coupon for the pie crust and 3 $1/2 paper coupons. For the Cheerios I had one .75 e-coupon and 2 .75 cent off paper coupons. I added to this order 2 4 packs of yogurt that was on markdown for $1.39 and I had 50 cent off coupons for each that doubled making it just 39 cents each. I also got an 8 pack of drinkable yogurt marked down to $1.50 and had a 55 cent off coupon making it just .95 cents. I also picked up a loaf of bread to throw in the freezer that was marked down to $1.09 which will save me 60 cents next week. I also picked up 3 boxes of Green Giant veggies that were priced at 88 cents each. I had an e-coupon and a paper coupon both good for 60/3 so I saved a $1.20 total. My total after using the $3 coupon from my last shopping trip was $6.43. Then I took my $3 catalina from that order and bought 4 packages of Simply Chocolate chip cookies and two cans of Crescent rolls. I had an e-coupon for 50 cents off the crescent rolls and 2 e-coupons each worth $1/2 on the cookies. I had a 50 cent paper coupon which doubled on the crescent rolls and a .55/1 coupon for each of the packages of cookies so my total was 26 cents and I got another $3 coupon to use when I do my shop tomorrow. :) I think it was a pretty good day. Here is a picture of all I got for less than $7 and left with a $3 coupon.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Some online deals and regular shopping as well

Well a couple of weeks ago I used the rest of my Eversave credit to buy a coupon for a Snap totes purse. These have pictures on the side of them. The one I chose is regular price is $80 and I would never spend that for a purse. I paid $8 out of pocket for the coupon which gave me $80 in credit for the site. A friend who was familiar with the company recommended I pay the extra to get the picture on both sides so that was $15. Shipping was about $10 so I spent another $25 out of pocket. It will be part of my Christmas present from my little guy. (Don't you love how I buy my own presents? It's the only way I know I will like what I get. LOL)

I also was able to combine my free shipping with all my freebies I had stacked up on Shutterfly. I have never been able to get that great of a deal before. I got 2 8 x 8 hard cover photo books, a 7 x 9 soft cover photo book, 50 Thank you cards for Scott to use, 10 more invites to Scott's birthday party, and 60 photo prints. I got 2 extra pages in each of the 8 x 8 books so that cost me $3 so that was my total! How great is that. One of the books is for my mom and the 7 x 9 is a special book full of grandparent pictures. :)

I went to Aldi on Monday and picked up some apples, bananas, and tangerines all for great prices so I stocked up for the next few weeks. I also stocked up on brown sugar, syrup, and some canola oil. I may have picked up another item or two but I have trouble remembering a lot of stuff lately. No idea why. Nothing at all going on. Need to start taking pics when I come home so I know what I got. While I was down there I ran into Walmart to check and see if any of the deals I had seen posted online were good at my store. I did not have any luck with that and could not even find the hook I was looking for to hang up the bird feeder my MIL got for us. I did however find a box of the allergy meds I needed to buy this week for only $2 and even better I had a $2 off coupon for them. To bad that was the only box they had left. I also picked up 4 pouches of Salmon for only $1 each and a container of extreme pringles with a free coupon.

Today I had a shop to do and picked up some deals while I was there and only spent $2 more dollars than I made and got a $3 catalina for next time. I got four cans of Grands cinnamon rolls, 2 cans of crescent rolls, some chicken salad from the deli (a deli purchase is required for these shops), a 12 pack of coke (an under cart item is required). I also got two packs of instant mashed potatoes for 40 cents, a protein bar with a free coupon, and a box of Barilla Plus pasta also with a free coupon and a 20 cent overage. So I did great at saving 60% even with two things I would not have bought if someone else had not been paying for them.

I also stopped at Rite Aid on Monday and got 3 packs of diapers for about $15 which makes them $5 a pack which is a great deal. I hope to go back at the end of the week with my $9 in bucks along with $7.50 in manf coupons and $5 in store coupons to get 3 more for about $6. Then I will still have $9 to get another package of diapers. Love it! So glad I figured out a way to stop paying full price for diapers and that Huggies work for Scott since they are great about coupons.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Thomas the Train and Kroger this week

So I read about this Thomas the Train deal at Target and was so excited. Target had a coupon good for 50% off their Beginner Thomas set making it just $12.49. Then I was able to Swap for some $10 off coupons that some other moms had received in magazines they were not going to use. One mom just sent it out without anything and I knew getting a couple of extras wouldn't be bad to get more for gifts or to share. So another girl I was already trading other stuff with sent one and I traded coke points for another but have yet to see it. Might be in the mailbox though I am so bad about getting down to check it lately with two kids around. So I picked up two sets for just over $6 with tax. They are so cute with Thomas trains that talk. :) I love Swap Mamas and being able to trad things I don't need or want for things I do need or want. Check them out if you haven't already. Let me know if you have any questions. Most of my experiences have been good but there have been a few along the way that have gone a bit bad but for the most part it has been great. :)

So I have been getting my list together since last week to hit up Kroger on the second week of their mega sale. They had Ronzoni Pasta on sale for 79-89 cents a box with the deal and I had coupons good for at least 50 cents off a box if not $1 off making it free plus a money maker. I got 17 boxes all together of the three different kinds. We love the whole wheat pasta one for spaghetti it makes it so much more filling and I need less meat in the sauce. I also had an ecoupon that came off and helped out. All said and done I made 16 cents off the 17 boxes. Got to love that! I also picked up 10 cans of tomatoes at .49 cents a can. I know there were coupons out there but I didn't have them and it would have only saved $2 so probably not worth trying to get them. I also picked up a bunch of cans of fruit for Scott for the winter. When I can't get the fresh fruit we switched to cans and I have a hard time finding good deals so I stocked up at .49 cents each at least 25 cents cheaper than I can get it when it's not on sale and a lot cheaper than I can get pears since I can't find a place that carries the ones in juice for a great regular price or even in light syrup. Aldi at least carries the peaches and fruit cocktail at decent prices. I did mess up my count though so I have to take 6 back and get 4 more to round out the deal. I have a love/hate relationship with Mega sales because you have to have the exact right amount to get the deals. I also got 6 cans of cream of mushroom soup and 2 cans of Chunky soup for free with an extra penny for each. I had two coupons good for $4 off Wholly Guacamole and it was only marked $2.89 so I got two free and overage for the rest of my groceries. I got two packages of Driscoll Raspberries for $1.50 each after my 50 cent off coupons doubled. My total was well over $100 before the Mega deals and coupons. I got 102 gas points and spent a grand total of $33.39 at a 75% savings and that didn't count the mark down on my 2 loaves of bread I got for 99 cents and the markdown on Scotty's favorite yogurt I got for 1/2 off. Oh and for that money I also got 3 6 packs of drinkable yogurt. Scott loves those. Oh and a brick of Velveeta for our yummy grilled cheese. I am down to half a box and didn't want to run out. I came home and had to clean out my pantry to fit all that pasta and food in it. :) What a great trip. So blessed to live in a country where food is so abundant and there are so many great deals on it to be had.

The only bad part about cleaning out the pantry was I realized I am out of some stuff for baking for the holidays coming up so I will have to stock up on those next week at Aldi if there are not better deals somewhere else.

Oh I forgot I did get to Aldi this week as well. I took the container back from my grapes because they were supposed to be seedless and I spent all week pulling seeds out of them so Scotty could eat them. :( Thankfully they have a satisfaction guaranteed promise there. I picked up a pineapple on sale and a ham which will last a while and I will freeze the rest. Spent more than normal at Aldi but I am good for a while with the ham which was the biggest expense.

Meijer didn't have anything on sale I couldn't live without. Next week I will make it in to use my $2 off anything coupon they gave me through their M-perks. It is good through Friday of next week. :)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Halloween Clearance and a Meijer run

I ran into Target to check and see if they actually had the trains I am waiting on coupons to get and stopped to check their Halloween stuff. They had stuff 75% off so I picked up a couple of costumes for Scott for next year or for dress up. I got Thomas the train for $5 and a Knight costume (not armor) for $3. I also picked up a blowup helmet for my husband. I know he's going to have a blast with it. :) Love clearance. I wish I could have gone back on Sunday when I am pretty sure they went 90% but Sundays don't work for me. :(

Then I ran into Meijer to grab some stuff that was on sale. I didn't have a lot of coupons this time but I had a couple of 50 cent off Angel soft and it was half price so I got two 6 pack double rolls for 99 cents. Sure can't beat that. I also got a bag of frozen shrimp for $3.49. Love it! I know I got some more stuff but I can't remember what. I do know they were regular stuff with sale prices but nothing extraordinarily great.

I then ran to Kohl's to check something for a friend and couldn't resist picking up Scott a few shirts while I was there. He doesn't have a lot of shirts and the prices were pretty good for new shirts. I got two for $4.80 each and one for just over $6 but it was a Thomas the train Christmas shirt so totally worth it. :) I also picked up a book for a little friend's first birthday. I got almost 30% off with the weekend deal they were having. Kohl's has the best sales. I don't go often but always seem to like the prices with their sales.

I need to make it to Aldi but I am not sure I am going to brave taking my extra out to do it. A couple of sale prices on fruit I wish I could get but that's about it. Otherwise Wednesday will be soon enough. I also need to get my list together for the mega sale at Kroger. I knew it would continue this week so I didn't go back last week. Got my coupons ready to go. :)

Friday, November 5, 2010

Deal good enough to return stuff to Toys R us and way behind

Wow so sorry for being so far behind on my blog. I started a new babysitting job this week and I haven't been shopping let alone getting back to my blog. It's a short term job so hopefully I will be back to normal soon.

A week ago Thursday TRU had one of their member's only sales where they email you coupons and it's only good for one day and sometimes only for a few hours. Thankfully this one was good all day. (I hate shopping at night when stores are crowded.) They were offering the Early Engineers Thomas trains and sets for 1/2 off. I knew I wanted a couple more trains for Scott so I figured I would pick those up even though I had already bought the sets for Scott. Well I got there and they had combined one of the trains I bought seperately with the set so an extra savings. I was like for that price I can return the set and the train. So a $49 dollar set and a $18 train were on sale for $24. I added another set we didn't have yet and 3 more trains for about $8 more than what I returned. Amazing! Sometimes it's even worth a return trip to take something back you got a better deal on. I did return it when I was near there anyway and didn't have my little guy with me making it easier on myself and not wasting gas while I am at it.

I did do one shop on Sunday and have another one in two weeks so I got a few more freebies doing that.

Kroger is having their mega sale this week and next. They have some really great deals on there and I need to make it back for some more. So far all I got was 10 cans for fruit for 49 cents each. Since the best I can get is a double can for $1.49 it's a great deal and the pears I can't even get for that price. I want to get some more of that and there are other deals I was able to print coupons for and some I found during my shop for the Ronzoni garden pasta which will make it a money maker. :) I didn't even know it was on sale when I snagged the coupons I just figured it would be soon. That store had not done a good job of putting their tags on the shelves telling what was on sale and what was not. Not very helpful to the bargain shopper. Especially since the ads are kind of vague at Kroger.

This weekend is my Shutterfly party that I won. Everyone gets a free photo book and 10 free cards. There is supposed to be a deal with free shipping but something seems to be wrong with the site and it's saying you can't get it so we will see if that part gets fixed. I was happy to find out that www.tripadvisor.com was giving away free photo books when you posted a review. I love reading trip advisor reviews when I am going to stay at a hotel. I want to make sure it's a good one. So I always leave reviews for other travelers. This time I left a review of one of my favorite restaurants right here in Lexington. I am going to use the freebie to get a book for my mom for Christmas. Love saving money on gifts. The other place I have been ordering from is www.artscow.com. I am not over impressed with them and they are in some place like Hong Kong so shipping is slow but the prices are pretty good with all the deals they offer. I have bought prints and Christmas ornaments from them so far and am considering some other deals as well.

Also for blogging about Shutterfly's cards they gave me 50 free ones. To bad that I didn't wait to make my cards. Oh well now I am going to see if they will work to order more invites to Scott's party so I don't have to print any myself and make some Thank you cards for it while I am at it. :) Now that is a money saver.

Oh and the way not to save money just check out Etsy.com. I bought all the stuff for Scott's party but still had not figured out what do about the "cake". It is a Wonder Pets theme party at Gymboree. So I found someone that had Wonder Pet cupcake toppers listed. They really didn't want to make me any character ones though. So I ordered just the W's from her and she pointed me to another seller who had made big faces for cakes and I thought about them but at $15 a piece I just couldn't do it. So I got 6 faces from her even though they were more than the 12 W's I bought from the other person. Got to love how much some charge vs others so be sure and check out all the sellers on there and if you can get from someone who sells for less for the same thing you are good. :) Doesn't always work though. Oh well they are bought and paid for with my work money for this week so now we are ready for the party. All I have to do is make the cupcakes and a little cake for Scott. :) I think that is everything for his party. You only turn 2 once. :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Build A Bear and my new camera

I almost completely forgot how much I am loving our deal at Build A Bear on Saturday. I got a card in the mail offering me a free animal good for 3 days up to $12. So I figured why not. We found a bear with candy corn on him and he is so cute it was marked down to $12 from $16 They said if you spent $15 you got a free cloth trick or treat bag and Scotty loved the little pumpkin ones for the bears so we picked it up for $3 got the free bag and left with a bear, a treat bag for the bear and one for Scott for $3.18. You can't beat that. :)

I also decided to go ahead with my expensive camera purchase. I asked my friend for her help since her dad owns a business that sells cameras. They recommended a basic Canon DSLR but couldn't get a better deal than everyone online was offering. So I started my search. I ordered through Amazon and got a package deal with the card and an extra battery for the same price as just the camera other places. Can't wait to get it and start taking pictures. :)Part of it is a gift from my parents and Brad and Scott and the rest I paid for with my babysitting money. :)

Some great online deals and my regular deals. :)

I have started off the week with a bang and lots of great deals. I finally took the time to go into the Bread outlet store near me. I was pleased to find that they did have some of the wide pan whole wheat bread that we eat around here for about 30 cents less a loaf than Aldi. Not always worth an extra stop maybe because I didn't see anything else I couldn't live without. When Kroger marks theirs down it is still 20-40 cheaper a loaf but not as available. We also hit Goodwill and did find a pair of work pants for Brad not as nice as I would have liked but if I learn to hem pants I could have gotten some better ones. Maybe one day.

This morning I finally used my coupon I got for Nutty guys from Eversave for $1. I got 2lbs of dried fruit and spent just under $6 more for the overage and shipping cost. Awesome for $7. That stuff is expensive. I still have a Groupon one that I am going to use to get my sister some nuts.

I also bought an Eversave coupon and used the last of my credit $28 for a purse with a custom picture. The shipping will be $10 more and it has been suggested that I get the double sided picture for an extra $15 for an $80 start price I am pretty happy. I am out $8 for the $80 credit and whatever else I spend is up to me. A friend is a wholesaler for the company and says they are amazing. I would hope so at the price but then even Vera Bradley is pricey and not nearly as fun as having my baby on my purse. :)

While I was out yesterday I also did my Aldi run. I didn't need a lot so I grabbed a couple items to stock up while I had the money. So I got lettuce, bananas, a pack of tomatoes, 2 large cans of peaches, and a jar of salsa for under $11.

I also got lucky on my mystery shop yesterday and found some more great deals so I spent a little more than I made but got more of the AA and AAA batteries for the great price of $4 for packs of 20. Can't beat that anywhere. I also found two 1/2 gallons of milk for 75 cents each after markdown and coupons. Aldi has been selling milk for $1.49 a gallon but they go bad to fast so we waste half of it this way I can freeze the carton until we are ready to use it. That is why I print coupons when I can find them and having them with me for those great deals that pop up. I also got some whole wheat hot dog buns on clearance for 89 cents. Not the best price but a good one anyway. I have two more shops before the weekend is over so maybe I will find some more great deals. I also still need to run by Meijer this week.

This afternoon I am off to return the DVD I already had, The shoes that didn't work out and a pair of jeans that are about 5 inches to long. We will see how that goes. Would love to get more jeans but we will see what happens since I got them 1/2 off I might not be able to just exchange them in the store. Might end up returning them. The other two are just returns.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Great deals at Meijer, some DVD's at Family Christian and trying to get a new camera

Yesterday I remembered that I still had not received a new flyer from Family Christian store and I love the sales they have on kids DVDs. I checked the website and found that there was a new sale starting yesterday. So I have a few extra minutes before the restaurant opened for lunch so we ran in. I got a new Veggie Tales and an Auto B Good car video to try for Scott. They were both only $5 each regular price $15. Scott loved the car one so we will be keeping our eyes open to pick up more of those in future sales.

Today I finally made it to Meijer with all my coupons ready to go. I got four bottles of olive oil free! Now who can beat that. I used a store coupon and a manf one for each bottle and they were 1/2 off on sale. :) I also got four jars of Classico Pasta sauce for 68 cents each and two free boxes of Ronzoni pasta. I picked up a little over a pound of ground chuck at $1.69 a pound. I also picked up some canned fruit not the best price going but cheap enough at 90 cents per can. Need to find a better deal on canned pears. Aldi does not carry any in light syrup or fruit juice so I can't get them there and Walmart did not have the big cans either. :( We live on that and peaches and fruit cocktail all winter. Wish fresh fruit were cheaper though. I also buy frozen fruit for smoothies though. Back to deals today. I also picked up two boxes of kleenex at half off but found that since I bought them last they are down 20 kleenex. This is plain getting crazy. How are we supposed to survive on less and less all the time. No raises and everything getting more and more expensive.

So I spent $15.25 and saved over $40. So a good day.

I am looking into buying my first really nice camera. Probably will go ahead and do it because Scott will only be little once and I don't want to let this time pass me by. I have done my research though and am able to get a package deal for just a little bit more than just getting the camera so I plan to do that. Comes with a card and an extra battery among other things.

Making your own Holiday/Christmas Cards using Shutterfly

For many years now I have been using my own pictures to make personalized Christmas Cards. Currently Shutterfly is offering 20% off their Christmas Cards and free shipping if you spend $30. Both deals are listed here http://www.shutterfly.com/cards-stationery
I love the ones where I can add multiple pictures especially now that I have a little boy of my own. I love this one http://www.shutterfly.com/cards-stationery/cards-stationery/christ-wishes-religious-christmas-card-5x7-flat?sortType=1&storeNode=60217 It tells my true feelings about what Christmas means to me and it lets me add four of my own pictures. I can't wait to create some!

Here is a link to their other Christmas cards http://www.shutterfly.com/cards-stationery/christmas-cards. They are all just so cute. These are fun too because you can sort of do a Holiday Letter with the pictures too. I have never done a holiday letter but we will see if I start doing that in the future. http://www.shutterfly.com/cards-stationery/holiday-story-cards Check all their options here http://www.shutterfly.com/cards-stationery

Shutterfly has so many great products and I love making my photo books there. The quality is always top notch. :)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Another mystery shop and a free solution

OK so I love doing mystery shops because it gives me a little bit extra in the budget and I get to buy things I normally would not because stuff from the deli is not in my price range. :)I still spent a little out of pocket today but mostly because I bought a treat for Scotty and a "birthday" cake for myself. If I send my husband to get a cake I will end up with something super expensive and probably not what I wanted anyway. So I got a chocolate cake that was marked down and it looks yummy. I got Scott a bucket to collect his Halloween candy in. It has Lightening McQueen on it and looks like a tire. He loves it. It was at least on sale but still a splurge because we didn't "need" it. I am sure it will be a hit for years to come though. I used some coupons and got some frozen meals for 38 cents each. If I had the freezer space I probably could have got them for free with some extra money as well but it wouldn't work so I took what I could get. They are the Hungry Man ones so Scott and I will both get a meal from one. I love stuff for quick lunches for such a cheap price. :) I also was able to pick up some yogurt that had been marked down. I had coupons that doubled and made some of it free so I got 16 cups of yogurt and spent only $2. That makes Brad very happy when he gets them in his lunch. Yogurt and granola bars were things I thought I was going to have to cut out but I have managed to find some great deals and keep buying them for a lot less. :)

My excitement for the day was discovering that I had a picture we had never hung because it was a duplicate of one we already had hanging in our bedroom. I wanted a frame for the caricature I had made of Scott. It was some work getting the stuff off the back but it looks great. Now all I have to do is get a picture hanger to put on it since it was made to hang the other way and the pieces don't come off to move them. I think I might have one around here I just need to look for it. Then I have a frame and mat for nothing out of pocket and I could not be happier. I was actually heading out to goodwill to see what I could find there when I remembered that picture had been gathering dust in my bedroom for several years now. :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Errands from far and near starting with a trip to Trader Joes. :)

While we were in Cincinnati we headed up the road a little bit to hit Trader Joes. So wish we had one closer. They have some pretty good prices. I picked up two more boxes of multigrain pancake mix and a container of my favorite chocolate covered almonds. Brad had to get his favorite Trader Joes trips which was most of the reason for the trip up there. They are reasonably priced compared to regular chips and he loves them so if it makes him happy it works for me.

On Monday we did our usual Aldi trip. Not loving the fall produce prices as much as the spring and summer ones but still got a decent deal on grapes and our usual bananas. Picked up another can of Salmon to replace the one we used and two cans of refried beans as well as two cans of fruit cocktail for Scotty. Spent less than $13.

Went to Payless because Scott needed some new shoes. I had a gift card they sent me after the mistake with my order some months ago. I had thought about using it toward some shoes for me but no such luck I get to keep waiting. Scott got some Car shoes that light up. He is one happy little boy. I would have got the plain ones for less but he loves cars so much we just had to get them. So I spent $15 out of pocket which is good for new shoes I guess.

Today I had a mystery shop to do and spent about $15 more than they paid me so not a bad deal and part of that was because I splurged on my Deli purchase and got some yummy prepared food for Scott and I to eat for lunch. I figured I would have spent about $5 normally for that part of the purchase so I spent an extra $5 which would have been lunch at a fast food place for us so I figured it was win win. :) I found some great mark down breads while I was there. Weight Watchers stuff for 75% off and whole wheat buns for 1/2 off. I also got 4 cans of tuna for 50 cents each. I got a pack of diapers for $4 after an e-coupon and a regular coupon and a sale. I think the time for using both is coming to an end soon. They are now saying they can't be used together even though they still work for now.

Then this afternoon I hit Rite aid armed with my rain check for diapers along with all my coupons and the gift card they sent me for buying diapers a few weeks ago. So I spent $2.28 out of pocket for 3 packages of diapers there!! Got to love that one.

Sometimes you save enough money you can splurge a little while still saving as much as possible

I love nothing better than saving money but sometimes you just have to buy and or do some fun stuff even if you can't save money on it.

We had a trip planned to go to Chicago to visit with some of my mommy friends at the last minute Scott was not feeling well and I was afraid that as soon as I packed him up and could no longer get out of my hotel room he would be to sick to travel. So early in the week last week I canceled our trip. Brad still had the time off work though so I figured we would do some fun stuff closer to home. Thursday Brad joined us for Scott's normal music class at Gymboree. He had never been before so he was excited to see all the fun Scott has. The great thing about him going was we got lots of pictures and videos that I know we will always treasure. Thursday night I decided that since we have a zoo membership that made going to the Halloween Party party free we would head to Louisville. The first two weeks with a membership you got to go for free. You can park off site for free but with a one year old I was hesitant to do that and get stuck waiting on a shuttle to take us to the car so we could go home. So we paid the $5 to park. In all honestly I am glad we did not pay to go in. I totally forgot that you can't really even see a lot of the animals along the route they send you through the zoo. Scott had a blast just running around and seeing all the fun stuff. So they had these fun toys that spin around and light up. I just couldn't help myself from buying one for Scott. He loved it and played with it all night long. I know he will have a lot more fun out of it in the future too. I also have been wanting for a while to get a caricature of Scott drawn. I was so excited there was someone there that was drawing them. He sat still and flirted and laughed with the girl and we got a great picture. She even colored it for us for free just because she loved his hair and wanted to do it. As a zoo member we even got a discount so it cost me less than $8. What a deal!

Friday we finally made it to the Cincinnati Children's museum. I was able to get another BOGO adult admission pass to get us in for less. Scott is cheap since he only 1 which was a bonus. He loved the Children's museum and we splurged on lunch. Next time I think we will just pack a lunch and save some money. On Saturday we took Scott to ride on his first train. He had a blast and it was not to expensive because he was free and we just had to pay for the grownups. What a fun weekend!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Kroger, Meijer, Aldi, Whole foods, and Sam's Club

I have been to Kroger already twice but one was to get Scott's prescription and it was that trip that I realized my deal on AA batteries from Sam's was not a good deal right now at all. They are on sale for $6 for a 20 pack and have a $2 off coupon on them making them just $4 for 20 batteries. I saw this deal a while back and it is not consistent between different Kroger stores. I have been going to a lot of them lately and they do tend to not only sell different things but their prices can vary greatly. First trip I got some marked down bread and cinnamon rolls. I also got Scott two of the cutest little pumpkins for 50 cents each. I used my BOGO egg coupon to get 2 dozen for 98 cents and since they are 99 cents a dozen at Aldi I was happy.

Meijer did not have a lot of things I needed. I got a couple of packages of goldfish for $1 each since we seem to go through a lot of those lately. Mr. "fish" boy. So stinkin cute I can't resist giving them to him. I also picked up two 32oz containers of coffee creamer for free after the $1.50 off each and the $2 off coupon I got from Meijer if I spent $5. I also picked up a red pepper and a yellow pepper for $1 each which is a good price.

Sam's club I swear I always spend way to much money but I guess it is just because I have buy so much at one time because the prices are actually very good on the stuff I buy. I got a Rotisserie chicken to use for dinner and I am sure a several more meals to come. $5 for a huge chicken. I got the AA batteries that I will be returning. I also picked up 5lbs of turkey and I think it was $2.19 a pound which is good for ground turkey and most of the time cheaper and healthier than ground beef at least the good stuff. I use it to make meatloaf. I make it all up at once and bake it in muffin tins so it cooks faster and saves electricity. Then I just freeze and thaw when ready to eat. Quick easy dinners. :) I also got a huge bottle of chewable Vitamin C for around $10. I was happy to see that the PB went down a $1 but we didn't need any. I also got an 8 pack of mandarin oranges. Love them on salads and Scotty just likes to eat them.

Scott has been sick so I ran to Whole foods yesterday and picked up some really expensive vitamin C for him which is why I got the big bottle from Sam's today. I then found out it has mangoes in it so he might not be taking it for long and switching to the other ones. We also found a cool toothbrush that Scott loves and at least it was on sale.

Then we ran to Aldi to get our usual bananas, some chips for Brad, Bread, some saltine crackers for 79 cents which was a great price, I also got a bag of onions for 89 cents and a box of popcorn shrimp. I spent about $11.

I also used my birthday coupon from Coldwater Creek and my $20 coupon for using their credit card combined with a 50% off sale to get a pair of jeans for just over $7 shipped. :) I sure hope they fit.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Rounding out the week

My Christmas cards have already arrived and they look awesome. Found out this week I was picked to host a Shutterfly House party which is very exciting. Everyone gets a free shutterfly book and other stuff from Shutterfly. Now if anyone can make it that would be even better. So far it's a no go. Didn't realize there was a home football game that day. Seems there is always one lately not sure why there are so many all clumped together this year. Few breaks in between. On to the rest of the saving.

I never made it to Rite aid which I am bummed about but such is my life. I still have the rain check so I will try and use it in the next few days for more diapers if anyone has them in stock after being on sale last week. Having the truck come on Friday doesn't work well for restocking during the week.

I finally made it to Meijer on Saturday this was a very busy week for us so there was not a lot of time during the week to run those errands. I stocked up on canned vegetables because they were on sale 4/$1 which is about as good as you can get. Even at Aldi they are over 50 cents a can. I also stocked up on apples at 59 cents a pound and got some strawberries, raspberries, and grapes at good prices since I knew that Aldi didn't have any deals on fruit in their add for the week. I hate that summer is wrapping up because I love all the great prices on fresh fruit. Back to less fresh fruit and more canned and frozen I guess. :( I also got a couple boxes of shells and cheese. I proved that you can save over 1/2 just by shopping sales and not using coupons. Everything was store brand pretty much so no coupons to use but still saved almost $30 and only spend $22.

I also went to a few yard sales but only did well at two. I got a couple of shirts for Scott, some books, some blocks, two pair of shoes, and some trucks for his friend Parker for $10.75. At another sale I finally found a little chair for Scotty. It is a great one that is well made and rocks. To bad it is red with purple polka dots. It was only $5 so I am going to try and get some fabric to at least cover it somewhat. Not sure if I am going to attempt a complete recover though. They sell some for around $45 at Toys R us and I am pretty sure they are not as well made as this one. I am very happy. Now to find some cheap fabric to use. Off to JoAnn's later to see what I can find with my 50% off coupon.

I also went to Once Upon a Child on Saturday because they were having a 25% off the entire store sale. I wanted to go ahead and get Scott some more size 3T winter PJ's since I know he will be out of the 2T's before winter is over. He also needs more shirts for winter. I got 4 pairs of PJ's, 2 shirts and a hoodie with Mater on it for less than $19. I pass up a lot of cute stuff because I think paying more for a name brand is just plain crazy. I stuck with the ones marked $2.50 each and skipped the ones that go for $7.50 or more just for the name.

Getting ready to order the grandparents personalized picture gifts for Christmas. Lots of deals to be had out there. www.artscow.com seems to have some really good ones if you have not signed up with them yet it might be worth checking out. Lots of free stuff even though shipping is a little high I think it all rounds out since you are not paying for the gifts. Most of the reviews seem to be good. I will get back to you when my prints and such arrived that I have ordered.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Yard Sales, Kroger, Aldi, and Christmas Cards to end and restart the week

I was able to hit a few more neighborhood sales over the weekend. Not as many great finds as in the spring and I am not sure why that is since I am sure some of these people have not had a sale since spring. I picked up a few trucks and stacking cups for Scotty since they are his favorites. I got him a new vehicle puzzle that he loves. It is a Melissa and Doug and had the handles on it for only $2. I picked up a few DVD's on Friday for him I got 5 for just $14 and they were good ones including Bolt and Wall*E.

I went to Kroger and got a few deals. Still dealing with some of my e-coupons not working. Haven't resolved the ones from last week either so that is even worse. I have more soup coupons and I found that they are still on sale at my Kroger but didn't seem to be at the one yesterday so I need to go back and get those while they are almost free or some are free. I picked up two bottles of salad dressing for 49 cents each that were on sale with coupons. I got two bottles of bbq sauce, 2 containers of velveeta broccoli and cheese pasta, 2 bags of Quakes, and two bottles of Fuze for only $3.90. I also picked up 5 bricks of cream cheese for free since it was on sale for .99 cents and I had a buy five get $5 off coupon. So technically I made 5 cents off of that one.

At Aldi I got my usual bananas, 4 pounds of grapes, a large pineapple, 2 cans of refried beans, 4 cans of chili beans, a loaf of whole wheat bread, and 2 plums for less than $14.

I also found a deal on my Christmas cards. Maybe not the best one that will be out there but I have the extra money to do it this week and who knows what the deals will be in the future and if I will have the money. I have my stamps all ready to go so this was my last expense. I spent $25 on 40 personalized cards with envelopes. That included tax and shipping. I saved almost $14 off their regular price. I think Walmart might be about the same price but for the life of me I could not get them to tell me a price other than they start at 28 cents which I know are the smaller cards. I love Kodak Gallery and know they will be top quality so I am happy.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Saving this week...

I keep thinking my week should be over but it's only Thursday morning and I am ready for bedtime. Not a lot of shopping this week but some good deals and savings.

I hit Aldi up on Monday and got flour tortillas because we were out, lettuce so I convince myself I don't need to buy bagged salad because it goes bad to fast and I end up throwing half of it out, our usual 3 packs of bananas for 39 cents a pound, a loaf of whole wheat bread because I haven't been a Kroger when they have marked it down the last two weeks and I used the last loaf out of the freezer. I also got more re-fried beans and a bag of chips for when my dad visits. They have great prices on snack foods even though I don't buy a lot of those. The bag of chips that are like lays ripple chips were only $1.29. :)

Kroger did not have a lot of deals this week but I had 50 cent off a starkist tuna product so I got 4 free pouches of tuna since they were on sale for $1 each. Someone left behind a coupon for the yogurt smoothies a couple of weeks ago so I used to to get Scott another 6 pack for 88 cents. He loves that stuff.

I had two mystery shops this week so that helped my budget. I picked up a pumpkin for us to carve for Halloween and another pack of water. I haven't bought bottled water all summer. Love to have it to take when we go out. At home we drink from the tap. It's just not cost effective to buy it when we go places when it's so hot. Who wants to pay $1 or more a bottle when whole pack is less than $4 for 24 bottles. I even freeze some so we have cold water all day long. I also now have lunch meat for the next week. I even got beans for Scotty to play with. (He loved digging in them and playing at art class so I figured why not bring the idea home.)

I probably will not hit Meijer this week they really didn't have any great deals.

I did find some amazing deals online which I was very excited about. Lands End had a great clearance on shoes. I got two pairs of sandals for Scott for next summer for $7.99 each. (I can't even but shoes at Target or Walmart for that price.) I also got some shoes for me for next summer for $5.99 and a pair I hope will work for now in place of the tennis shoes I have yet to buy for $11.99. I got free shipping so after added tax I spent a grand total of $36 on four pairs of shoes. LOVE IT!

I have been doing my best to start buying Scott's birthday items for his party. Since we are going with a Wonder Pets theme I cannot always get the cheapest things out there but using ebay and coupon codes and buying when I can I will save as much as possible. I also went ahead and booked Scott's party at Gymboree. As members we got $25 off and I was able to use gymbucks so I saved another $25 off. So that is all paid for and I am sure it will be great. Now I just have to figure out how to get the W symbol onto iron transfers for the capes.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Kroger, JoAnn's, Meijer (second trip), and Yard Sales

My Saturday has been filled with lots of errands and lots of yard sales. I didn't make it home until after noon and I left before 8. I love to get out early for the yard sales especially neighborhood sales. I was excited that the big neighborhood across the street was having theirs today. I apparently have either bought everything for Scotty already or I am getting pickier because I didn't buy all that much this morning. My big purchase of the day was a Twin Size bed for when Scotty is ready for it. Scotty's furniture is all painted white some came that way and some of it I sanded and painted before I even got pregnant with him since I knew the crib I had was white. (So glad I did that since he was born 6 weeks early and there was no time to work on the nursery before he arrived.) Anyway this one is already white and it was hand made. The rails just slide on and off no tools needed. When I first stopped the guy was asking $60 which wasn't a bad price just more than I really wanted to pay. So I told him I would think about it and come back if I wanted it. I decided it was worth doing since I would not have to paint it. I went back and offered him $40. He said I will give it to you for $35 just since you came back. :) So I got it for almost 1/2 what he originally wanted. I was able to get it in the car and get it home with only minimal issues. When he's ready we will just have to find a sale on mattresses for it. I found more Pajamas so I now have enough to last the week between laundry at least for the start of winter. They were only $1 each. :) Got a few little toys and other misc stuff for Scotty and a couple of books. I found a container of tinker toys to start a good collection of those for when he is bigger for only $3. They are one of those things that I think are outrageously priced brand new and even at yard sales are usually overpriced. I came home and unloaded the bed and headed across town. I tried to get a refrigerator for my neighbor but the lady didn't like my price. I gave her my card and we will see if she managed to sell if for what she wanted. I found an xylophone for Scotty. I have been finding all these little kid ones that won't last any time and he will be bored. This one is a really nice one that he can actually learn to play songs on should he choose to. It was only $2 and I know he's going to love it.

I realized I forgot to buy Apple Cider when I was at Meijer and it was on sale for $2 a gallon so I wanted to get back over there. I also got some great coupons for Crystal light making a pack that makes 8 quarts only 95 cents and some Maxwell House coupons that made the sale on Brad's coffee even sweeter. I got two more cans for only $1.49 each after the sale and coupons. It's is $5 a can regular price.

I also only had a couple of things to get at Kroger so I had been procrastinating on getting there this week but the free veggies made me need to get there before the sale ended. I love the GG veggies and paying 30 cents out of pocket and getting back a $2 coupon for sure was my kind of deal. I had used 3 computers to print 6 50 cent off one GG veggie coupons making them only 25 cents each after the coupons. Then I had several 60 cent off 3 e-coupons to combine with it making it 30 cents out of pocket and when you buy 6 you get $2 back. So I used my $2 coupon and the $5 coupon to buy 3 12 packs of Dr. Pepper for Brad. Out of pocket after the sale 3/$9 and a 50 cent e-coupon was $2.04. Got to love that and worth the trip. While I was there I saw the weinermobile was parked outside so I called Brad and had him bring Scotty down to see it. Free entertainment to boot. :) LOVE IT!

My other stop of the morning was to JoAnn's Craft store for fabric to make capes for Scotty's birthday party. I have decided to make them instead of buying stuff for goody bags. A friend of my mom's is going to do it for me so that part won't cost much and I was able to use coupons to get one piece of fabric half off and one piece for 40% off so a good time to go and get it. Now I just have to pick up some iron on paper so I can print out the symbol to put on them. I already bought the cups to use at the party they are straw cups and I got them for 25 cents each. My way of saving money on a party is to start early and get the deals. Now if I could just get the party supplies for a deal I would be happy. So far no luck with ebay and no great sales online that I have seen. I am going to book Gymboree next week when my Gymbucks are good for $25 off. We already get a discount for being members. I get someone to entertain and clean up. :) Worth the money.

Consignment Sales

I was able to hit a consignment sale this week without taking Scotty thanks to my friend Britney. Taking a toddler shopping in a busy place where they don't like you to use strollers is not my idea of fun. I have learned which of the sales around town are the ones I like to hit and watch for them to come around once or twice a year. A lot of them have a spring and a fall sale. All I really needed for Scott was some pajamas and he can use some more shirts but I didn't find any I liked at prices I liked. I was able to get him 5 pairs of pajamas and a sweater. I also picked up a magnet toy that will be great for church or on a trip. A Thomas the train DVD with the new animation instead of the older stuff. Two books one was a Thomas with all the fun noises and one was a vehicle book that makes fun noises as well. (Brad wants to know why all the toys have to make noise now.) I also found a pair of Thomas the train boots. They are going to be big this winter but should fit next winter perfectly and since boots are not worn much around here it's better to get them big. I spent a grand total of $33.50. Normally I would wait and go on Saturday when some stuff is 1/2 off but I had to many errands for Saturday and I wanted to make sure and find the pajamas I was looking for.

If you are looking for deals on clothes for kids consignment sales and stores are great places to look. Sometimes the stuff is brand new and sometimes it's not but at least you know how it will wash and wear. Happy hunting.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Diaper Deal

I went back to Rite aid this afternoon to see what I could find out about the Diapers being on sale. This store did not have them marked either but since so many people had said they were on sale I decided to just go ahead and try it. I got two packages of Huggies Pure and Natural diapers and one of the jean diapers. I had a free coupon from my Huggies points I used on the Jean diapers. Then I used two $3/1 coupons on the Pure and Natural ones. I also had a $2 video values coupon from last month I never used and a $1 one from this month. I also used a $5/$25 purchase. I spent $5.30 out of pocket. I got $6 in Up rewards to use in the store. I also have submitted it for a $10 gift card. So I made more than $10 on this diaper deal. Now to figure out how to use my $6 in the next couple of weeks and I will have the gift card for the next deal. :)

Got to love free/cheap diapers.

Aldi, Meijer, and Target

Well it has been a busy week already and I am ready for it to be over. Not sure where that will get me since most of my days are pretty much the same. :)

Yesterday we headed to Aldi to pick up mostly fresh fruit. Their deals sometimes just can't be beat. I got 4lbs of grapes at 78 cents a pound. A pound of Strawberries for $1.59. Two bags of bananas that were 39 cents a pound. A Pineapple for $1.49 (If it tells you anything these were $3.49 at Meijer today) and I got two boxes of raisins. My total was $11.41. Love that place.

Today we went to Target to get the new Tinkerbell movie on Blu Ray and DVD. I had a $10 off manufacturer coupon making it only $12.49. Somewhere out there there were $5 off Target coupons I wish I could have found one of those. Such a bummer when you can't get what you want. I also picked up two packages of PF Chang's Sweet and Sour Chicken. They are on Markdown for $6.99 and I had manf coupons for $1.50 and Target coupons for $1.50 off making them $3.99 a bag. I love PF Chang's so hopefully the frozen meals will be as good.

Then we went to Meijer where I had so many deals to get. As a head's up for my total I had $12 in catalinas from last week to add to this week's order. My deals were 4 cans of shaving cream for my husband I had a $1 off when you spent $4 so this made it a good time to stock up. I looked at using the Edge shaving cream BOGO free coupons but the cans are only 7ozs vs Barbasol which are 11ozs so about the same price for an extra 16ozs and my husband does not care. I had two $2 coupons good one BioFit contact solution and they had the little bottles on sale for $1.99 so these were free. I also picked up a box of hair color to try. I love Nutriesse Garnier hair color and they have a new type out. Meijer had a $3 M-Perks coupon for it and I had a $3 printable coupon for it so I spent $1.39 to try it. Food wise Meijer had a deal if you bought two family size Stouffers Entrees you got free bread sticks, veggies, and cookies. The meals were on sale for $5.99. I had a $1 off coupon for both making them $4.99 each. So for less than $10 I got several meals for us. My husband loves his coffee so I watch for Meijer to mark it 1/2 off and if I am lucky like I was today I have a $1/2 coupon. So his coffee that normally costs $5 a can I got two for $4. That is an awesome deal. :) I got a bottle of Farmhouse Wishbone dressing on sale for $2.50 with a $2 off coupon for only 50 cents. I got two bottles of juice on sale for $1.67 a bottle with two 50 cent off one coupons that doubled making it only 67 cents a bottle. I also got 10 cans of Chunky sirlion burger soup which were on sale for 1.25 a can. I had two $2/4 coupons and two .50/1 coupons so my total was $6.50 for the 10 cans or 65 cents a can. :) I add noodles to these and it makes a yummy quick dinner for us.

I spent $18.29 total and saved $71.45. Even my cashier friend who does my coupons for me most weeks was impressed. Love when that happens.

I still have a small Kroger run and I need to try and get the diaper deal from Rite aid. I got in and I think things were not priced correctly and they didn't have the sizes I needed at the store I went to. Will check one more on my way to take Scotty to Gymboree and if not will do it at the end of the week when they restock. Should get money back on 3 packs of diapers when it's all said and done. I will update if it works.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

What a crazy money week...

It's like it just slipped through my fingers. Sunday night my Tivo died that was a sad moment for me. I have become addicted to that thing. So after some research into a DVR from the cable company and checking what I could get from Tivo to replace it I ended up getting a new Tivo that will give me the channels in HD and we could get a card from the cable company so we could get our extended channels on it. Which means Wonder Pets for Scotty and Versus for my Indy car racing. To bad it's the end of the season. LOL It pays for itself in about 3 years if the cable company did not change it's rates in that time and I am happy again.

Our other big expense for the beginning of the week was I found out the guy who sold me Scotty's Power Wheels had lied to me about the battery being new. We could not get it to run at all. :( So off to Walmart we went to get a new battery for it. I did my research online first and knew that it was only a couple of dollars more in the store than it was to get it online and wait for them to ship it out. I confronted the guy but he just played dumb. Live and learn I guess. It was still a great deal I just hate when people lie to me and won't own up to it.

Grocery shopping felt really crazy to me this week because there were some great deals and trying to get all that together along with two mystery shops was kind of crazy. I must be getting old I seem to be having trouble keeping up with a busy toddler and everything else I need to get done. We hit Aldi on Monday and only picked up a few things. Mostly fresh fruit. I always get my bananas there because they are 10 less a pound than anywhere else. Strawberries were still 99 cents a pound so we got more of those. Got Brad a couple more cans of refried beans to make burritos. It's rare to get them cheaper than they sell for at Aldi.

Meijer had some great deals. I got 6 boxes of Green Giant Veggies and made 6 cents off the deal. I got two bags of Stouffer's Express for $3 which means a meal for $1.50 and they are pretty good. I thought I got a deal on ziploc bags but the coupon didn't work right and I forgot to print another one before they were taken off so I missed out on that. It was still a good deal just not as good as it would have been. I need to watch closer but it's hard some times to tell if those Meijer coupons come off. I also got 10 things of cheese for next to nothing. We won't be buying cheese for a long time.

Kroger I got more almonds and this time I found the plain ones at a different store. $3 a pound is a great deal! I found granola bars on markdown for 99 cents a box and got three. I found the black trash bags on markdown as well for $3.79 for half off. Pretty sure it was a good deal but will have to double check later. I got 6 boxes of tampons for $1.49 after coupons and a Catalina. :) That was one great deal. I know I got more but I can't even remember.

I did hit a few yard sales on Saturday. Next weekend is the big neighborhood sale and I am very excited. This week I found a few books for Scotty and some Saw horses for $2 each. One is a little broken but still works. We needed some of these a while back and didn't have them and they are always great for making a table with. The find of the day was a fishy mask for a nebulizer. I think they quit making these and they are great for little ones. Only 25 cents. :)

The week rounded out by finding out our doctor visit that I thought was going to cost me $10 is not covered because the doctor was out of network. Now you would have thought someone would have let me know that at least as a head's up but I guess not. So I owe another $126. As my dad says "It's only money" but ouch that hurts. On the bright side it was cheaper than the ER would be but we probably could have gone somewhere else for less had I known. I am going to talk to our regular doctor and see what he recommends for next time. This Dr is in his office but I guess doesn't do insurance or at least BCBS. :(

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Wow, I am really behind on my posting.

It's not that I haven't been getting any deals it is just with Scotty being sick and everything else going on I haven't gotten around to posting.

I will just give an overview for the most part with a few specifics. Aldi I have been getting my fruits and veggies as they are on a good deal. The fruit is going up and veggies are coming down as the fruit is not in season as much and the veggies are. I have been trying to get bread on markdown at Kroger so that I save money that way. 99 cents to $1.19 for the same kind of whole wheat/whole grain bread I would get at Aldi for $1.69. I still get it there when I can't find a mark down. I really need to try the bread store that is close to Aldi and see what kind of deals I can find there. Maybe on Monday I will try that and go by Payless since they sent me a gift card after not having what I ordered in stock from them and I have a coupon that I can use too. Maybe they have some tennis shoes for me. I really need a new pair but I am picky and have so many other things I want to spend money on.

I was able to get Scotty his first Power Wheels this week. I belong to my local cheapcycle group and every once in a while I get lucky and find something great that someone else has not snatched up already. We saw a Power Wheels at Goodwill several weeks ago but it did not have a battery or charger. I came home and looked up what they would cost me and found that it would be close to if not more than $100 so I decided it was not a good deal. This one was only $50 and it's one of the Jeep Wranglers that sells for around $250 new. It has a pretty new battery and did include the charger. It is missing on piece on the back that does not effect how it works. He is a little bit to small yet but he loves it and I know he will figure it out really soon. :)I also ordered him a bucket swing from ebay and we can't wait for it to get here. I put some eye hooks and some chain in the garage so we could hang a swing out there for Scott. We have a Fisher Price one but I don't like how he sits so tall in it and being over concrete I want him as safe as possible. He loves that he gets to swing at home now though. He will sit there for a good 20 minutes at a time. :) I only wish the person had not been so slow about shipping it. I ordered it on Sunday and they finally shipped it on Friday. I guess when you are looking for a deal sometimes it takes longer to get what you want. I have not had a lot of luck at Yard Sales recently I went weeks without being to go and now there are just not that many not to mention it rained this morning. Last week I got a great deal on a box of books. There were at least 30 kids books in the box and an etch-sketch for $3. Lots of Thomas books so I was excited and a lot of other great books including some Dora to share with Scotty's little friend K who loves Dora. Today I found a couple of things making it worth going out. I got a pair of ear protectors to use when we go watch Indy car races. I had bought one pair at Meijer thinking we would take Scott this year but Brad and I don't own any either so now we have two pairs. :) I also was very happy to find a white lamp base. A couple of years ago I found one and it didn't have the piece on the top to keep you from getting shocked and you couldn't buy just that piece. So someone took it apart for me supposedly to rewire it and told me it was not made well and I should use it so I gave up. Today I got a nice heavy base with all the pieces so I was able to put the shade on it that matches Scotty's room and get it all up and working. We didn't need it before because the dresser where it goes was being used as our changing table until the last few months where we moved to the crib or the floor. For $2 I am very happy.

I also went to Meijer where I got 4 cans of free soup and 4 more cans for 50 cents each. I also picked up some more drinkable yogurt for Scott since it was on sale. And just because I know they are not going to sell them any more I got Scotty some more Wonder Pets figures. I really wanted to get the school house at half off but decided to wait and see if it gets any cheaper and call it a lose if not. He might or might not play with it and it is still $20.

At Kroger this week I got bread and buns on mark down. I also got some oatmeal packets with coupons for 98 cents a box. I picked up one more bottle of the Claritin for $1.79 after mark down and coupon. Love getting something I have to buy no matter what for a great price. Especially something that costs me about $9 every 24 days normally. Scotty doesn't love it but he will survive. I also found a great deal on on Almonds. $3 for a pound of cinnamon flavored. YUM and even plain ones cost more than that.

Speaking of nuts I got a great deal on Groupon for $10 I got a $25 gift certificate for Nutty Guys and am excited to try them out. I got a different one from them from Eversave a few weeks ago and I need to get my orders in. Check out these sites that give you a deal a day in some bigger cities and some online deals too. Check out Groupon and Eversave if you haven't already.

My one other purchase was not so much of a deal as it saves money by not running water constantly for my one year old. He loves to play in running water and I finally found a toy that will let him do that. Yookidoo Flow 'N' Fill Spout I think he will be in heaven.

More soon. Happy Saving to you all.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Glad I got some deals...

since my little boy has been sick and we have had to spend a lot on prescriptions and doctor visits not to mention the spacer and mask that I had to pay for out of pocket and hope that the insurance at least adds it back toward my deductible.

So far I have been to Kroger twice this week yesterday we went to get Scott's prescription filled after visiting the doctor for the 3rd time in 4 days. I was very excited to find so many things on manager specials. I got 2 loaves of bread, a pack of whole wheat sandwich buns, 2 packages of hot dog buns, a box of donuts, 2 packs of Scotty's favorite yogurt that I refuse to pay full price for, & two 6 packs of applesauce cups as well as some cepacol sore throat fizzlers. I also got 4 packs of coke since they were on sale and with the lack of sleep caffeine is important this week. I didn't use any coupons because most of the stuff was store brand and I also forgot I had one I could have used. Love when they mark things half off. I think I spent about $22 on all that but finding my receipt would take to much time. :)

Today I went in because I saw some Claritin for Scotty on mark down and knew I had seen coupons online I could print for it. So I was able to print 2 coupons for $3 off and that brought my total to $1.79 a bottle and since I usually spend about $9 each for the same thing I was very happy. I was able to get two things of deodorant for Brad for free with coupons. I also got a box of Ronzoni pasta for 45 cents. After using my coupon from buying granola bars a couple of weeks ago I spent $1.22 out of pocket. I also went back to the pharmacy and asked about getting my store credit for a new prescription yesterday in all the confusion I forgot to ask. They were nice enough to add the $20 to my card so I will have that to use on future purchases. Yeah for nice workers that helped me out. :)

I also went to Aldi yesterday where I picked more fruit some Strawberries, grapes, and bananas. I also got 3 canisters of sugar free koolaid type stuff for Brad because it was a good price as well as 3 cartons of eggs because they were also cheap and 4 cans of baked beans for labor day weekend. Amazed that blueberries more than doubled in price from last week so Scotty is out of luck on that one. Back to buying frozen ones. Knowing the prices is what it is all about. :)

Happy saving money!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Kroger Shopping

I have to say the deals at Kroger were not very good this week and I did not find a lot of great deals even in the store. I did find they had marked down some of the cups that had built in straws even more and I got a few more for Scott as well as a couple for his friends. I might add them to their treat bags at his party or better yet use them for the drinks at his party. Oh now the blog is making me think and I think I need to go back for more. LOL No squeezed juice boxes!!! I also got Scott some plastic divided plates that hopefully the dishwasher will not kill but for 25 cents I can't go too wrong. They had Scott's favorite drinkable yogurt on sale so I got more of that as well as a different kind of Oatmeal that there were BOGO free coupons for. I used my coupons from buying stuff last week to get Scott a Thomas spinbrush toothbrush and some Thomas Toddler toothbrush. After the coupons I paid just over $1 for both. Scott really seems to like it. I am hoping it means less fights when it is time to brush teeth. He is really getting into to Thomas the train.

Also thrilled I got a coupon from Qdoba for a free entree with the purchase of a drink. Check it out if you like their food. http://www.foodloversfightingburritoboredom.com/The_Cure Scott and I are headed there after Music tomorrow. :)

Savings at Meijer and Target

Savings at Target and Meijer

The budget is kind of slim this week because of other stuff we needed. Thankfully there were some good sales and I have two mystery shops that will pay for some groceries. 

So I hit Target armed with a $2 off Target coupon and a $2 off Manf coupon for Huggies so diapers for $5.47 with tax. I also picked up two packs of Bic pens using two coupons for $1 off 2 on store one Manf. Love that they let you do that.

Then onto Meijer where I did two transactions to get the Catalinas and free Chex mix with double coupons. The first one I paid $2 and got back a $3 cat. I got 8 cans of Progresso soup and 2 bags of Chex mix. The second transaction I got 8 more cans of soup and 2 more bags of Chex mix. Then I got 6 packs of Ziploc containers and 4 bags of Ziploc bags for 50 cents each. I also got 6 packs of Scott’s favorite Lance crackers for 45 cents each after the sale and a 55 cent off coupon. I also picked up some Pizza Rolls for my sister at 60 cents a box and one free box for buying 10 items from the 10/$10 sale get one free.

I also got a couple of bags of bread flour and some cabbage that were on sale. I spent $17.36 and saved $68.32. Great shopping trip. This was without 2 of my coupons that should have doubled doubling. Some weird computer glitch and then the cashier didn’t double when she put them in manually. I should have been paying more attention. She told me they were saying coupon conflict error. Now what the heck does that mean? New one to me.

I also took Scott’s clothes into Once Upon a Child hoping to sell some to have money to get some of the stuff he needs for winter. They really did not buy that much this time. I am hoping as he gets bigger we will be able to sell more of it. I think I will try taking what is left to Re-kid and see what they might take since it’s all good stuff. I did get over $34 in store credit and picked up 3 pairs of jeans and a pair of the Gap dress pants I love for Scott in a size 2T with the adjustable waist so we get long enough without falling off. I also got him Bambi II on DVD and we still have a little over $11 left for next time.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

How to save money on vacation

We love to travel and now that we have a little one we still want to be able to do that without breaking our budget. Currently my husband is working a lot of overtime so we have extra money to do some fun stuff.

So I start with trying to find a hotel if we are only driving if we are flying I start with the airfare. So we went to Cincinnati this weekend and we wanted to stay overnight so we could do more the next day without driving back and forth. With my son we really need a room with two separate rooms which takes the price up. He goes to bed early and if we don't want to go to bed early or worry about waking him so I look for one bedroom suites. I start by checking websites like Expedia.com to see what is available and figuring out what area we want to stay in. I also use www.tripadvisor.com to make sure that the hotel is a good one to stay in. Right after Brad and I got married we booked a hotel without checking it out and it was the most miserable weekend where all I wanted to do was go home. This time by reading the reviews I read where people were getting a great rate through a homewood suites for just $99 a night for a one bedroom. So I went to the website for the museum that was giving them this rate and they just had a code that you could enter when you booked the room to get that rate. I was so happy because some of the stuff I also look for in a hotel this chain owned by Hilton has. They have a free hot breakfast which means we get protein which makes it last longer. They also offer free internet access which saves us money and allows us to use our computers for free. If we were staying longer the full kitchen this hotel offers and the weekday meals would also be money savers as well.

Now onto the activities. One of the best things we did this year was to buy a zoo membership. Even though the zoo is an hour from our house we have already been several times this summer with friends saving $13.95 each time and it has a guest so twice we have saved double that. We also used it when we went to the Columbus zoo for 1/2 off a savings of $13. This weekend we used it at the Cincinnati zoo and saved another $14. After adding up what we would have spent I found we had already saved over $40 and it's good until the end of June next year. We got it at the beginning of June which gave us almost an extra month of use vs getting it at the end of May meaning it would have expired at the end of May so a day or even two made a months worth of difference. :)

We were going to take Scott to the Cincinnati Children's museum but due to some bad timing having hoped to get a morning nap in we never made it. There was an accident that had traffic stopped and by the time we would have made it up there I was afraid Scott would have been to tired to enjoy it and the money would have been wasted. I had however found a great way to save money thanks to a reminder from Scott's Gymboree teacher. www.tropicana.com has a reward program when you buy OJ then you get points. Then you can use the points for all sorts of great things like BOGO free admission to museums and other places. I have also gotten a BOGO free movie ticket as a special reward as well as free OJ. It's a cool program and well worth collecting points from. I'm hoping my friend might want to go back up this week or next and take the kids to play so we can use the coupon. If not I only used one point to get it.

While we were near the outlets in Cincinnati I decided to take a trip to check out the Stride Rite store. I found a great pair of hiking boots that are just dressy enough Scott can wear them to church this fall/winter. They were on clearance for $16. I also went into the Gymboree outlet and got him a Shirt that says "I make noise and cause trouble". I also found a pair of jeans on clearance with the cool adjustable elastic in a size 3 for later this winter and a one piece outfit in a 2T that is super cute with a puppy dressed as a pirate. Love those outfits. They are soft and so easy to put on.