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.