I am a stay at home mom who is fed up with spending a large portion of income on grocery bills. It is my job, according to God, to be a good help mate for my husband. I am trying to live up to my job description. I am starting a journey into the grocery coupon world and invite you to come with me. I have never used coupons for grocery shopping and as of January 1st 2008 I am diving in. I will be using http://www.thegrocerygame/ , http://www.moneysavingmom.com and the http://www.couponmom.com/ website to guide me on how to save money. I am going to treat this adventure as a part time job and put in the hours necessary to make it work. I am excited and nervous to get started.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Kroger Coupons Came Today

I received some Kroger coupons in the mail today. These are GREAT! One coupon is for a free private selection ice cream. There are some for Diet Coke, fruit from the produce department. I am feelin the love for Kroger right now. I probably got about 15 coupons from them today.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

CVS Was a Bomb for Me this Week

CVS was a big bomb for me this week, hence the picture.

My friend, the queen of CVS, is out of town this week and I am suffering. I went to CVS and paid OOP $20 and only got $11 in ECB's back. I was so worried about using my ECB's this week. I was trying to decide if I should pay cash or go for the ECB's, it was like I was choosing between my children. I went for the cash.

I actually made a big mistake. I thought that some of my razor coupons had expired, not realizing that they expire on 5-27 instead of 4-27. It hit me as I was sitting here in front of my computer, we are still in April not May yet.

I will be going back to CVS tonight to redeem myself.

I did two transactions today here is all I got:
2 Soleil razor refills
1 Claritin kids allergy med
2-4packs of Dole fruit cups (I thought I had coupons but didnt)
3 Essence of Beauty gift bags (I got these because they gave me back $5 in ECB) $4.50 OOP
4 Palmolive dish soaps B1G1

My coupons
Soleil $2 off each
$3 off Claritin
.25 off Palmolive
2- $3 off $15 purchase
total OOP $20
ECB back $11

My redemption shopping tonight will be:
1 Alavert $6.99
2 Soleil Razors $5.99 each

My coupons that I will use
$4 off Alavert
$2 off Soleil
$3 off $15 purchase
total OOP around $8
Total ECB's back $12.99

I will probably not do a Kroger shop this week. There is'nt anything on the list that I need except corn on the cob and I don't really need it. If the mood strikes me for corn I will go get some if not thats o.k. too. Oh yeah, Mr. Hospitality needs to take basil to work tomorrow for another function so I guess I will go to Kroger tonight for that.

Monday, April 28, 2008

The Simple Things

I was doing some mommy chores and washing some romaine lettuce I had gotten from Kroger, nothing special just doing what needed to be done., and that is when it hit me how God has given everything order. Every leaf of lettuce fit perfectly with the next and the outcome is this perfect round head of lettuce. I was just awe struck looking at this head of lettuce. God has ordained order for everything and it was perfectly evident to me in this head of lettuce today.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Mower Update

Last week after I did an oil change and a air filter replacement on my mower, I cranked it up and nothin. I looked in my trusty book to see what to tackle next and it said the gas filter and the carberator. Both of these seemed a little overwhelming to tackle since our grass was starting to look like the African savannah. Off to the mower shop I went with mower in tow. The man who took it said that I had probably broken a safety part since I was trying to start it without the blades, who knew there was a safety feature for that. He also said that they were 3 to 4 weeks behind. I had to pick my chin up off the pavement when he said that, maybe thats why he said he would try and work it in for me. I said my farwells on Friday hoping that I wouldnt get a your house looks abandoned ticket from the city while I waited for my mower to be fixed. Monday afternoon the mower place called and said I could pick it up that it was repaired. I was shocked! Had I fallen into a deep sleep and woke up three weeks later? No, the man must have took pity on the "little woman." Thank you thank you greasy repairman. The best part is we only paid $18 to have it fixed. If they would have done all the maintenance it would have cost $50.

March Walgreen Gift Card

As I walked away from my mailbox today I did another moonwalk. Remember this dance from the 80's that was so hip? The 80's were such an innocent time. The time when Michael Jackson was not affraid of the sun, when he had a nose and George Michaels was straight and a hottie. Anyway enough about my teen years.
In the past two days I have received my Wal-green gift card and a rebate check.
When you do Wal-Green rebates and you put it on a gift card they give you an extra 10%. My gift card has about $16.50 on it. I am doing the rebates that will give me all of my money plus overage, click to read prior post.

I also received the Smart Rinse mouthwash for kids rebate in the mail today. The deal was buy one for $2.99 get $2.99 ECB's back at CVS, I think I also had a $1 coupon. So I put out $1.99 in ECB's and got back $2.99 in ECB's and $2.99 in cash. I think this was a good deal.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Uplifting Note

On an uplifting note, I paid my bills today. I know paying bills is not an uplifting event but today I did good. I have posted that we paid off our car in January. We paid off our credit card in March and am now working on an equity line. Today I was able to pay all of our bills plus pay our car insurance until August, pay our property tax that isnt due until June. I was also able to put an extra $280.00 on our equity line balance and I stuck some money away in the do not touch fund. We still have a little over $300 left for misc. for the next two weeks, Yay!

After my bible study last week I came home and actually figured out how much money we have, how much gos out in bills and how much we waste. What an eye opener that was, I was shocked when I saw how much money we waste a month. I figured we waste about $600 a month. I even gave us a $5oo food allowance for the month and came up with $600 in wasted money. I know we dont eat $500 in food so that is even more to the wasted count. I am convicted to put at least $300 away a month in a do not touch fund.
I am so thankful that God has provided everything that we need, and more.

Budget What Budget?

This picture totally describes my feelings about my spending this week.
I went to Sams Club today for my bi-weekly shopping. I feel like a big loser because I spent $173.00 today. I did buy alot of meat so that is a killer on a budget. I have not spent this much money at Sams Club in a long time.

My total OOP at Sams and Kroger this week is $220.00 I am still $30 under what I used to spend a Sams Club alone.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Hospitality Man

I have been doing the grocery game since Dec/Jan time and now I am starting to feel the burden of debt being lifted. I can also notice a change in my husbands disposition as well. Debt stresses him out more than anything else. He would dread when I would grocery shop now he laughs and asks how much I spent. In the past couple of week my hubby has become the man of hospitality. He is volunteering to bring meatballs and sausage dishes to work functions. The functions are things like retirements and new babies. Today he made hot sausage with onions and mushrooms. He then recruited me to make fudge brownies. I love that we are able to give more and not worry about running out of money or moving money from accounts to cover stuff. I also love having the stuff stockpiled and I can just run to my shelves and pull it out.

The Survey Says

The survey is in, it looks like the majority of people agree with me and let the answering machine do its job.

40% of people said they let the answering machine get it.
33% are on the fence, sometimes they answer sometimes not.
8% just cant help themselves and must answer the phone.

30 people answered the survey so I dont know how scientific this really is but it was fun.

Sorry Lori I guess you are the freak not me, just kidding I Love Ya Man.

Had to Have a Diet Coke Fix

I was dying for a Diet Coke fix today and couldnt wait until tomorrow to get it at Sams Club. I searched all the ads today to see who had it on sale and no one I mean no one had any deals on it. The cheapest I found was CVS for $2.99 a 12 pack.

I have come to the conclusion that I do not need $30 a week to do CVS. This week I have $37.97 and $5 of this was left over from last week. This afternoon off I went to CVS for my Diet Coke. I got 3-12 packs of cans I used a $5 ECB and a $3.99 ECB. I paid .03 out of pocket.

My second Trip to Kroger this Week

I was not going to go but I am gearing up for summer. We have joined a pool this summer and I plan to spend alot of time there. I am stocking up on the individual serving stuff like puddings, fruit snacks and goldfish. We need razors so for the last two weeks I have been trying to stock those. I will hit it when it comes around at CVS again, trust me.

Here was my deal today:
4 Gushers fruit snacks on sale 4/$10 I had .50 coupons for each one. Then at the cash register another $4 was taken off. They were .50 a box
2 Nature Valley nut crunch granola .50 a box
2 Curves granola .50 a box
2 Quattro disposable razors on sale for $5 I had B1G1 free coupon $2.50 each
2 Extreme 3 disposable razors on sale $ I had B1G1 $2.50 each
1 Zantac $4.99 I had a $5 coupon (1 more for you Emily)

1 Brita pitcher My dear sweet friend Lori knew I was having trouble printing my $5 off coupon for this so she printed a coupon for me and got it. These were on sale for $4.99 which with the coupon made it free.
---total before coupons $54.78 not including the Brita pitcher
---Total OOP $10.26

My Shortcuts that I posted about here were not working properly so I contacted the website and they added $2.60 to my account to use on anything and last night while I was on the shortcuts site I added Gushers to my card and got an additional .60 off on them. Shortcuts is literally putting money in my pocket, you have got to love that!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

I Went to Kroger Today

I went and did my weekly Kroger trip today. My hubby needed some spaghetti sauce for a party on Friday so I thought it would be better to go today since this is my Sams Club week. I did pretty well. I thought I was going to get out of there cheap this week but of course I saw some good deals and I actually bought some stuff that was cheaper at Kroger than at Sams Club this week.

One of the deals I worked this week was the cereal. Cheerios was on sale 4/$10 and then $4 off at the register. I also had .50 coupons for all my boxes of cereal. I got the boxes for .50 each.

my deal:

3 boxes of Honey Nut Cheerios
1 box of mutli grain Cheerios
13 bags of Kroger veggies on sale for $1 a bag
1 cucumber $1
1 bag of mixed greens discounted for $1.89
2 bags of fresh spinach on discount for $1.39 each
2-8ct boxes of 150 mg Zantac $4.99 (I had 2 coupons for $5 off each)
2-18ct large eggs on sale for $1.77
1-6pack of Yoplait drinkable yogurts $2.69 I had a .55 coupon
6 Yoplait yogurts .62 each I had a coupon for .50 off 6
1 bag of Sunkist Almond slices these were $2.99 & got a free Kroger salad dressing. I had $1 coupon
2 bags of Lenders bagels $1.79 I had $1 coupon off 2
1 Ragu spaghetti sauce $1.59 NO COUPON as I write this I feel a sting in my heart. I paid full price and did not have a coupon.

---total before discounts $68.43

---total OOP $37.30

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

So Sad

This week is another bummer for the grocery game list. I hardly see anything on there that I need it looks like all I need is frozen veggies. This is actually a good thing. How many people can say that all they need is milk, bread, eggs and veggies? I have finally gotten to a point where I am "cherry picking" this is the online lingo for picking and choosing what you need and not buying alot. This is my Sams Club week so I hope to get out of there under $100 and hopefully Kroger will be no more that $15 or $20. I can do the cereal deal but I bought some last week so I will see how that gos.

Yay More Coupons!

I always do those surveys that come in the mail. You know the ones where they want you to give all of your information as to where you shop and what you buy, do you smoke, drink etc... Today when I got home and checked my mail one of those envelopes was in my mailbox but on the front of it it said, "Here are the coupons we promised you." I thought, "great more coupons!" Here is a picture of them. They are pretty good too. The best is $6.50 off of Claritin or a small 10ct for free.

My Coupon System

I just realized that I have never taken a picture and posted my system for keeping coupons. I use a black index card box and I have seperators labeled for different items, such as: baby items, frozen foods, refridgerated foods, soups, canned goods, breakfast etc... In the back of my box I have my CVS Ecb's and a calculator. In the front, ahead of everything is where I stick the coupons I will use for my shopping trip. If I end up not using a coupon from my shopping trip, while I'm in the store I stick it back in the front and then file it when I have a chance. Here is a picture of my system. It's very easy and cheap plus it fits in my purse so I am never without my coupons.

It's All About Timing

Sometimes I believe it's all about the timing. I went into Food Lion today to use my coupon for a free bakery item. After getting my bakery item I decided to look at their ad since I was there. I noticed that sour cream was on sale for $1 and I remembered that I still had a .50 coupon left so off to the sour cream I went. On the way I saw a clearance rack, pitstop at the clearance rack. I look at the clearance racks when I shop because I might have a coupon or find a really really good deal. I was scanning the rack in disappointment until I saw the Clean Team wipes. I knew that I had a $3 off 2 Clean Team items. The price was marked $3.79 each which did not sound like a good deal, but I picked them up, prices can be changed if you ask the right person. As I went up another isle I found a lady who was placing tags on the shelves and asked her to scan my wipes to see what price was on them. She scanned and told me $3.79 so I said to her, "That doesnt sound like a clearance price I would get them and use my coupon if they were cheaper." She told me to hang on while she talked to "the people behind the glass wall". She came back and handed them to me for $1.89 each. I can handle that!

My deal"

1 Vanilla pound cake $4.49 (coupon was for $4.99)

1 Daisy sour cream $1 (.50 coupon)

2 Huggies Clean Team wipes $1.89 each ($3 off 2 coupon)

---total before coupons $9.86

-----Total OOP .98

Sunday, April 20, 2008

God is Good

What a blessing of newspapers God gave today. I got 11 papers from my guy who gives them every Sunday and then I got an extra set of inserts today in my regular delivered paper.

My Scenario Worked!!!

Money Saving Mom wanted us to post our scenarios so here it is. I went to CVS tonight and worked my deal. I ended up spending a little more than originally planned because as I was walking out the door my hubby asked for a pill cutter. Since I do all of this to help my husband and its FUN I got him what he needed.

Here is my deal:

My 1st deal was

1 Alavert just to see if it was working, it IS!
these are priced at $6.99 and there is a $4 off coupon click here
---total $2.99

I used $2 ecb and .99 OOP

My 2nd deal
3 Alavert
1 Pepcid AC Chewable
1 Aquafresh Advanced Whitening toothpaste
1 Mennen 24/7 deoderant
2 CVS Pain relievers
1 Gallon milk (needed)
1 pill splitter (6.99)
---total before coupons $58.40

coupons used
$2 manuf. Pepcid (this also has a mail in rebate for $5.50)
$2 CVS printable coupon
3-$4 Alavert
1-$2 Aquafresh CRT (cash register receipt)
1-$2 Aquafresh Manuf.
$1 Mennen speedstick
$10 off $50 purchase CRT
$4 off $20 purchase printable coupon

----Total OOP $1.52

I used $21.99 in ECB's and I have $37.97 to use next time.

Money Saving Mom CVS Scenario

I am posting a scenario that I will try to work today. I was there already today but forgot a coupon so I will need to go back. I will try to buy an Alavert 1st to see if it will give me 4 ecbs back. They are $6.99 and I have a $4 off coupon, the rumor is that this should print 4 ecb's. If this works I will work the deal below.

Here is the scenario:
I was told that CRT coupons can be added with a manuf. coupon and that I should be able to use the $10 off $50 CRT with a printable $4 off $20.
1 Pepcid AC Chewable 10.69
3-$6.99 Alavert
1 Aquafresh Advanced toothpaste $3.49
1 Mennen 24/7 speedstick $3.99
2-$3.99 CVS Pain relievers
1 gallon of milk (needed)
-----total before any coupons $51.24
my coupons
$10 off $50 purchase CRT
$4 off $20 purchase printable from i heart cvs
$2 off pepcid CVS printable from i heart cvs
$2 manuf. pepcid coupon
3-$4 Alavert coupons
$2 Aquafresh CRT
$2 Aquafresh manuf. coupon (this gives me .50 overage)
----Total oop $17.24
I will pay with a $15 ecb and a $2 ecb and the tax with cash.
ECB's I will earn back, hold on to your hats $28.97 That will give me about $45 or a little more for future purchases.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Good Job CVS!!

Again I praise CVS. I went there today so that he could give me my $2.00 back. There was no problem.

I am Sooo Over Wal-Mart

I went to
Wal-Mart today to get a friend 2 boxes of Zantac. She is going on a missions trip next month and I wanted to help out. I had 2-$5 coupons and the Zantac was $3.87 which would have given me overage on both. I had more items to cover the overage. When I got up to check out the woman first said, "We only take printables if they will scan." Then she realized that they were more than what the Zantac costs. I told her about the overage and that I have used coupons like this before etc... blah blah blah. Anyway she would not let me use them unless she put them down to the $3.87 price. I told her that Wal-Mart store policy is to take them with the overage and that I could use these coupons. She told me that she had worked there for 11 years and had never done that. I told her that she was wrong and that her and the other lady were not following Wal-Mart policy. I also said, "Thank you, I will take my coupons and use them at another store." Sorry Emily, I will get some Zantac for you and I will be able to use these coupons elsewhere.

I am done with Wal-Mart. My mother will be so happy and Sherri you now have a partner in your boycott.

Open Office Program

I posted on Tuesday April 15th about a program that I found online. My computer does not have Excel or Powerpoint but this program allows me to open these applications and work in them. The best part, this is a free community program. You can download it for free and use it without violating any copy right laws or anything. The program is called Open Office and here is the link http://download.openoffice.org/

I have found some free spreadsheets that I am using and they are also free. here is one from Hot Coupon World. Its a CVS calculator. I cant seem to find the one I have been using for Kroger but I have found another one that looks good click http://iheartcvs.com/ If you scroll down you will see the spreadsheet on the right and how to download it.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Feel Good Shopping Trip

I went to CVS tonight for a "pick me up shopping trip". I wanted to renew my belief in my money saving efforts after my lawnmower/
ticket day yesterday and today. I was wanting to do the Nivea deal where you buy $15 in Nivea products and get $5 ecbs back. I printed out online, with the help of friends, 3- $2 off coupons. The shave gel that I wanted was $2.99 each so I really needed 6 coupons instead of three. As I was trying to print more offline my computer crashed and then it said I had reached the limit even though I had only printed one. I emailed the company and said that I would really like to get reset and print three more coupons so that I could use their product. Today when the mail came Nivea sent me three more manufacturer coupons for $2 off. yay!!

My deal tonight I did:
6 Nivea shave gels
2 Heinze vinegar
coupons used
6-$2 coupons for Nivea
1 $4 off $20

My total came to $8 and change. I thought the total should have been lower but I just chalked it up to me calculating wrong I gave them a $7.98 ecb and .40 in cash.

I also got $7 in ecbs back for next time.

When I got home and looked at my receipt they forgot to scan one of my $2 coupons. Of course I got right on the phone and they are going to give me $2 back tomorrow when I go back.

I feel better about my lawnmower now, aaahhh.

The Punches Keep Coming

More to tell on the lawn mower saga. I took the mower to the lawn mower guy. He cranked it and then said, "you don't have the blades on do you? Where are the blades?" I said, "No, here they are, why?" Thinking this would be a quick fix. He proceeded to tell me that I should not have tried to start it without the blades. There is a safety feature on mowers that if you hit a rock or something that stops the blade the piece inside the mower sheers off and it throws the timing off (who knew). This feature is designed to stop your mower and not ruin the engine. "Oh I say, well I have been cranking it all afternoon trying to get it started." The man laughed and called me honey for the tenth time and told me if I had put the blades on and then tried to start it I would be in business.

Things to remember for next year: #1 remove spark plug before taking blades off to make sure I keep my hands intacked and #2 attach blades before cranking my heart out.


I know you all have been watching my blog in disbelief that I am trying to do my own lawnmower repair to save money. Well the lawn mower project is ove, Yay! This project was going to save me $5o, I s very excited! I went to the library and got a book and was well on my way to great savings.
Yesterday after my morning bible study I was headed to Advanced Auto to get a $2 drip pan. I was cruising along because I had a bit of a time crunch. I flipped open my cell phone to call my mom to tell her about a yard sale. I'll admit I was not watching my speed. Which after a ticket I received last year I have been regularly doing on this road. I had just gotten my mom on the phone and came down a hill when a police officer pulled out behind me and started his lights. I was driving 42 in a 25. I know, I know way to fast. This ticket is going to cost me $156.
Today I went out to try and put everything back together and to see if the lawnmower was going to run. I have changed the oil, air filter, carberator gasket and had the blades sharpened. I pulled the rope and nothing. My husband is loading it into the car now to take it to the lawnmower guys.

So my $50 lawnmower venture is going to cost over $200 this year.

I will try again next year.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

All Is Not Lost

I went to Food Lion on Tuesday to get the free $4.99 bakery product and the .99 lettuce only to be disappointed. The lettuce was dry, wilted and small and everything in the bakery was picked over and just not looking good. I decided to take my coupon and try again later. As I was walking out I noticed that they were offering free coffee and donuts to their customers. I got myself a free cup of coffee. I am usually not a coffee drinker but since my deals did'nt work I had an itch for some coffee. As I was making my cup my kids noticed that they had donuts too. So all in all I got a free coffee and the kids a donut, trip not wasted.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Another Shout Out to Sherri

Sherri has done it again. She has found a few more great sites. The first one is http://www.mygrocerydeals.com This site will tell you the sales at stores in your area. You add the stores you want to see and your zip code and away you go. If you print out the list of things on sale it puts them in order by store with prices and everything.

Another site is http://www.shop4freebies.com This is good you can go here and see free samples of all kinds of products. I went and signed up for a bunch of things.

What Do You Do When The Phone Rings At Dinner Time?

I thought this was a gimme type of practice but after talking with a friend, I guess not. At my house when we sit for dinner and the phone rings we don't answer it. My thought is, What good is the answering machine if you never allow it to answer? One of my husbands pet peeves is someone talking on the phone when he is trying to eat. There are alot of times that people call and we dont answer. My mom will hang up, she figures we are eating dinner, and others will leave a message.

I wonder how many people answer and how many let it ring, hmmm? I am sure there is some statistic on this and it probably has some kind of money saving value.

Leave a comment and take the survey on the right. This survey will be up until April 23rd and then we will see where the majority of people fall.

Maybe my family are freaks.

Another Free Sample

I know you are probably tired of hearing about free samples. I just want to say that they are really handy, especially the lotions and shampoo samples. We vacation every summer and these are great to just throw into your overnight bag and go. I got a Fiber One cereal sample today.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

New Spreadsheet

I found a program online that will allow me to open Excel and Powerpoint. Now I am able to use some of the spreadsheets that I have found online, thanks to Sherri. She is the true researcher. Anyway I found one that I like alot and here are some totals.

I have been grocery gaming since Jan. 1, 2008

My highest savings week was %74 and my lowest saving week was %44 (this week).

My Cumulative Value $1,149 (worth of groceries)

My Cumulative Spending $525.00 (what I've spent so far)

My Cumulative Savings $624.00 for a total savings of %54

My next step is to use the spreadsheet for my inventory. This will allow me to see all that I have at a glance. It will also show me what items need replenishing.

Walgreens Rebates

I have committed myself to buying things at Walgreens that are going to give me all of my money back plus overage. If they will pay me to buy it, I will.

This month I have bought three things. Here is a list of things bought:

1 Jane blush brush $4.99 I had $2.00 coupon
1 Aquafresh toothpaste $3.49 I had $1 coupon
1 Colgate 360 toothbrush $3.99 I had .75 coupon
These items would have cost $12.47. With my coupons I paid $8.72. What I should get back with the Walgreens rebate is $12.47 this means I should have a $3.75 profit!
I also bought 2 box of raisin bran from Walgreens today they had it on sale for 2/$5 I had $1 coupons.

A Little Disappointed This Week

This week Krogering was a little disappointing. I went today and did my shopping but mostly I only needed vegetables and necessities. I missed the cereal deal a couple of weeks ago so I needed to buy some today. I still saved %45 but I usually save around %50 to %54.

The Kroger totes are free if you go to http://www.kroger.com/ and register and then design a tote. You need to enter your Kroger card number when you register and then after you design your tote they put the free bag onto your card. I got two because my hubby has a card too. By the way all the stuff in the picture was in the totes, they are a really good size.

Here is my stash:

2 Kroger shopping totes free
2 boxes Cheerios 2/$5 I had .50 coupons so they were 2/$3
2 boxes of Kix on sale for 2/$5 I had .55 coupons
6 corn on the cob $2
4-4 packs of Bic Soleil disposable razors onsale for $4.19 I had $2 coupons
1 Neosporin on sale for $3.95 I had .75 coupon
2 Anne House Nut mix were on manager special $1.29 a bag
1 Miracle Whip on sale for $2.99 I had no coupon :(
1 head of leaf lettuce $1.99
4.08 Lbs of yams .69 per lb. total $2.82
2 English cucumbers $1 each
My total with no deal would have been $62.86
---- Total OOP $34.66
Plus I did buy Diet Coke earlier in the week it was 4/$10

I Thought I Would Save Money

I decided to try and fix our lawn mower myself and save some of the $50 that the lawn mower shop wanted and get it done about 2 weeks earlier than the shop could do it. I disassembled, partially, the lawn mower and am now trying to get parts. This savings is costing me 7 wasted trips around town looking for a carberator gasket. I have finally found the store (I think) but I am going to call and make sure they have the parts before I head over there tomorrow.

This venture will probably cost me the same price as what the mower shop would charge because I needed to buy the correct sockets and the new parts and dont forget the wasted trips. Next year I should be saving money. Especially now that I know what kind of store I need to buy my parts in.

Hopefully by this weekend this mower will have a new airfilter, oil filter, oil change and a spark plug.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

I Can Hear Wedding Bells

I went to CVS today and got a blood tester that was on sale for $14.99, I had a $30 coupon. I put absolutely no money out and got $14.99 ECB's back. Inside the box is a rebate for $50.
When I got my receipt my $15 ECB's from last week were printed on the bottom.
I vow to shop at CVS for as long as CVS stays in business.
I promise to love CVS for as long as they have ECB's and good cashiers.
I promise to take all or most of my prescriptions to him and allow him to take care of me in sickness and fill all of my prescriptions.
I have $44.97 in ECB's to use. This weeks ad doesn't seem to have anything that I want or need.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

CVS Bummer

This week looks like a bummer for CVS. There is only one deal I am working on and that is the blood tester. I put nothing out of pocket and get $15 ECB's back. Hopefully with this deal my $15 ECB's from this past week will print. I guess I will save my ECB's and try and use them in two weeks. If all go's well I will have $44.98 to use. Yay!!!

Girls Night to Shop

Two friends and I were going to meet last night for a "girls night shopping" We were going to hit Kroger, CVS and maybe Wal-Mart. I say maybe Wal-Mart because one friend was boycotting them. Anyway emails were flying about when and where to meet and something got lost in translation and it ended up being 2 of us instead of three. Lori and I had a good time, we walked around Kroger for probably an hour and half just talking and checking prices and we even managed to do one more deal. I got home around midnight because I went to Walgreens to try and work some of their deals but of course everything was gone.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Free Toys

I added a new link to my favorite sites. It is to Red Plum which is one of the inserts that comes in the mail. They have coupons to download. Check it out.

Also the shortcuts.com I told you about a few posts ago has a Pillsbury cresent roll coupon on therre for .25 off. This will work great with the Kroger deal this week if anyone still needs to go and take advantage of the 10 items $5 off.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

O.k. O.k. Enough with the Kroger

Yes, I went back again today. I was not planning to but one thing led to another and I found myself searching the isles.
It all started because I needed some hamburger and hot dog buns for dinner tonight. Then a thought occured to me, "It would be silly to go and not do a 10 for $5 deal."
It was 11:30 and I needed to pick up one of the children at noon. My second thought was, " I will pick up the child and then run to Kroger." My next thought was, "I wonder what coupons I have?" I did a quick search and found some coupons to work into the deal. The only problem was I only had 1 coupon. My next thought, "If I leave now I can run to church and search the coupon box before I need to pick up the child." Off I went, checking my watch every 1/4 mile or so.
I got my coupons and my child on time and away I went to Kroger.
Here is the deal
6 packages of Keebler cookies I had 1 coupon for .55/2 and 3 coupons for $1 off
4 Dawn dish soaps I had 1 coupon for .25 off the foam soap and 3 .50 coupons off regular Dawn.
1 pack of hamburger buns not on sale
1 pack of hot dog buns not on sale
----Total before deal was $18 and change
-----TOTAL OOP= $12

Lori I know I made fun of you last week after your 3rd or 4th trip, for that I am deeply sorry, I now understand.

I will not be posting a picture. If I dont post a picture does the deal really count? Was it really a Kroger trip?

I Should Not Boast

A few posts ago I was boasting on the great pictures I get from Winkflash.
First the good news, my Winkflash pictures came!
The bad news, they have lines running through them and I ordered glossy instead of the matte finish.
Good news again, I am sending them back and the company will refund my money and my shipping charges and then I can re-order with the matte finish.

This is the first time I have ever had a problem with Winkflash. At least they are fixing it and I had no trouble getting help.

I will keep you posted.
If you have never read Yertle the Turtle,
its a great read about boasting.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Kroger again

I went to Kroger tonight not really wanting to do my shopping for this week, but I am doing a meal for some friends and needed a few things. I decided while I was there I should just get it done. I did three transactions of 10 each. The buy 10 items get $5 is still going on.

Here is the list-not in transaction order.

5 Betty Crocker brownie mixes
1 Dawn dish detergent
1 Dawn foaming dish detergent
1 Kelloge special K cereal
2 bags of cheese puffs
3 Pillsbury mini cresent rolls
2 packs of Lenders bagels
5 Kraft shredded cheeses
1 Kroger Kid-O's cookies
2-12 pack of Hunts pudding
1 leaf lettuce
1 pack of grape tomatoes
4 bags of Goldfish
5 Lipton Sidedish noodles
1 box Ritz crackers

I had coupons for:

2 Dawn soaps
2 Lenders bagels
----Total without deals $87.84
-----TOTAL OOP= $44.44

Picture does not have my Kroger cookies or my tomatoes

Gods Guidance

I am confessing, I am not one who cares about small details. Nor am I blessed with patients. I like to go forward, and usually rush into something, without much planning or foresight. Then when it doesn't go my way I grumble and complain.
Since taking on this coupon task I realize how important planning and small details are. Now I plan for at least 2 days before I do any shopping and with CVS I plan for at least a week before I do any deals there.

But still I struggle and make mistakes, like expired coupons, getting the wrong product, not looking at my receipt closely and being overcharged, etc... When I make these mistakes first I am frustrated and then I always wonder, "What is God trying to teach me? Is God trying to teach me? Is the devil trying to make me stumble?"

I have decided to look at these mistakes as God's guiding hands teaching me to look at the details, be patient, be swift to listen, slow to speak and slow to anger (James 1:19). I am also trying to be thankful for these opportunities and to learn from them.
I know that God is my father and He will keep holding and helping me for as long as it takes.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Went to a couple of stores tonight

My first trip was to CVS for my $5.55 refund on the batteries. They gave me cash and there was no problem.

I am officially dating CVS now.

If I get the $20 in ECBs on Thursday I may have to ask him to marry me.

After CVS I was off to Walgreens. They were out of just about everything I wanted but I was able to score 4 rolls of 20 ft. Reynolds Wrap for .95 including tax.

Then it was off to Wal-Mart for some smelly things. If you remember about 2 weeks ago the Queen of Smelly Things and I went on a night shopping trip together. She introduced me to the Glade Plugins oil warmer. I now love the Lavender and Vanilla one.

I was able to pull 8 coupons for these out of the stash of coupons. The coupons are for $3 off and the regular price for these at Wal-Mart are $2.47. I HAD OVERAGE YEAH!!!

I got an 18 pack of large eggs and a 12 pack of Diet Coke to off set the overage. Sorry I forgot to add my Diet Coke to the picture.

OOP for the whole thing $2.67

I still have $1.93 left of the $5 bill from CVS. Now that is a gooood trip!

Since you asked.

I have had a couple inquires as to where I have found my CVS coupons. I have a couple of sites I work from.

The first is http://www.iheartcvs.com/ This site is great, the weekly ads are posted about a month ahead. So for someone who is starting out, like me, I can work on my deal for a good week or two ahead. They also have coupons linked on here to print.

The second site is http://www.afullcup.com/ . One of my friends really loves this site. It gives the ecb deals. People also post scenarios.

The third is http://www.moneysavingmom.com/ This site also gives scenarios to work the deals. I dont quite have the hang of working the deals where I am putting the minimal amount of money out and breaking up the transactions. The deals I did this week were worked about 3 times by me and then a friend of mine ran through them with me and even changed them around to work better.

ARGG Doubled!

As you know I had some ecb issues from CVS this time. I am sure I will get them but as the old saying gos, " its better to have 1 in the hand than two in the bush." I went over my receipts again, just to make sure things were right and I found an error. I was charged for an extra battery so the $8.58 that I spent out of pocket should be at least $5.29 cheaper. I am going back tonight to get my money.

But its worth a little aggrevation because next week I am going into CVS with $34.98 in ECB's

More Samples today

More free samples came today. See list on the right.


I went to CVS yesterday and did three different transactions. My 1st trip to CVS was around 3 p.m. I wanted a test run before I committed to two other transactions, that worked fine. Later, around 9 p.m. I went back for the other two transactions.

sorry my picture is missing a Duracell pack and 2 cvs pain relievers

Here is how I did:
1st transaction
1 Huggies jumbo diaper $8.99
1 Swiffer $5.99
1 Duracell AA battery 8 pack $5.29
2 CVS gelcap pain reliever
Coupons used
$4 off $20 purchase
$2 CVS diaper coupon
$1.50 manuf. Huggies coupon
$.75 Duracell battery coupon
-------- TOTAL OOP= .49 cash. I rolled $8 ecbs from last week
ECBS back $7.98

2nd transaction
1 Huggies jumbo diaper $8.99
1 Swiffer $5.99
1 Duracell AA 8 pack battery $5.29
1 Essence of beauty toe seperator .99
Coupons used
$4 off $20 purchase
$2 cvs diaper coupon
$1.50 manuf. huggies coupon
$1 Duracell coupon (this coupon on package)
TOTAL OOP= $8.58 I forgot my $7.98 ecb at home from my 1st transaction
no ecbs back this transaction

3rd transaction
1 Huggies diaper $8.99
1 Duracell battery $5.29
2 Excedrin $1.99 each
Coupons used
$4 off $20
$2 cvs diaper coupon
$1 huggies coupon
2-$2 off Excedrin yes these were free
----TOTAL OOP .70
I was working my deals and all was good until this last deal. All of my earned ECBs should have printed but they didn't. After this last deal $20 of EBCs should have printed. This morning I called and they will be ready to print by Thursday.

buy $25 of Huggies product get $10 ecbs back
buy 2 Swiffers get $5 ecbs back
buy 3 Essence of Beauty get $5 ecbs back
buy $15 of Duracell get $5 ecbs back

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Digital Picture Developing

Winkflash is having a

Spring sale extravaganza!!

4 x 6s are .06
5 x 7s are .08
8 x 10s are .99

I use http://www.winkflash.com/ alot and really love them. I have never had a problem uploading to their site and the Winkflash transporter is wonderful. You can also get B & W, or Sepia and a few others things at no extra charge. The other thing that I really like about Winkflash is that I get my pictures pretty quickly. I ordered last night and will probably have them by Wednesday.

I just got 122 pics developed for $13.31. I'm sure I could have gotten it a little cheaper if I would have broke up my order but I didn't think of it until after I had made my order.
They offer alot of discounts too. I have seen 30 to 50 free prints with your first order. Most of the time shipping is .99.
Check them out and leave me a comment.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Kroger Round Two

I went to Kroger again yesterday. I went because we needed some lettuce, cucumber and Diet Coke. My total bill was $18.97. Since I was going to Kroger anyway I decided to work a 10 item $5 deal. Here is what I got:

items marked with a * are some of the Kroger deal items

3-12 packs of Diet Coke 3/$10
1 leaf lettuce $1.99
1 cucumber $1
*2-10 ct Excedrin $1 each on sale.
*2 Betty Crocker Augraten potatoes $1.49 on sale
*2 Breyer icream $2.50 each on sale
*4 Peppridge Farm golfish $1 a bag on sale

Here is my coupons:
2 excedrin $2 off each. I used the coupons because they gave me $1.50 overage on each one.
2 Betty Crocker .40each
My Total without any deals would have been $27.57
Total OOP: $18.97

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Updated free stuff list

Today I received some more free stuff. See the list on the right side of my blog for all the things I have received so far.

1 Glad Forceflex garbage bag
1 Sun-Maid cookbook
1 Dove Pro-Age lotion

Enouragement from a Friend

After my grocery shopping yesterday I came out to my car and found a note on my windshield. I actually did'nt notice it until I was driving, so I had to wait until I stopped at a red light before I could get it. You would'nt believe all the thoughts running through my head until I was able to read the note. I kept thinking, "I know I did'nt park illegally, did I? I hope I did'nt offend someone while trying to park." When I was able to read it it said, "Get those deals girfriend! :) Guess who!"

I have an idea who did this and if it is her she will know what this sign means.

For those of you who do not know sign language this sign means "I love you"

Thank you mystery friend for the words of encouragement.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Don't Forget

Tomorrow is free ink refill at Walgreens.
If you need the coupon follow this link


This morning I check my email and they sent me $5 in ECBs, what a blessing. These were not expected. Going into next week I have $32 of ECBs to use. Diapers are coming next week.


First let me roll up my sleeves this may take awhile.

Krogers deals this week are
I say in my best opera voice.

I only have about half of my Scotts in the picture and 2 of the Pillsbury (not pictured) fell behind my freezer so they had to be retrieved after I put everything away.

Krogers is running the buy 10 get $5 off of you purchase and there is no limit on your transactions. I did 6 transactions.
The deals are all through the store you just have to make sure you lump them into 10 item transactions or else you will be spending to much.
I will not list pricing for everything because that would be overwhelming.
Here is my List

24 rolls of Scotts papertowels
4-96oz of Clorox bleach
5 quart size Ziploc freezer bags
3 gallon size Ziploc freezer bags
2-2lbs Domino granulated sugar
4 Lipton side dish noodles
3 Kraft bags of shredded cheese (2 mozerella, 1 cheddar)
4-8oz tubs of Philadelphia cream cheese (2 are strawberry flavor)
6 pack of Yoplait yogurt
2 magic sizing spray starch (not on the deals but cheap)
2-22oz Shout stain remover
3 Frenchs mustard (2 reg. 1 spicy brown)
6 Pillsbury french bread
2 Pillsbury pizza crust

TOTAL OOP= $56.28 including tax
Actual total w/out deals $155.19

The things I had coupons for were:
Scotts paper towels $1/4
Ziploc $.40/2 and $1/2
Domino sugar $.45/2
Lipton side dishes $.75/2
Pillsbury pizza crust $.50/2 (THESE WERE FREE)
Pillsbury french bread $.50/2
Shout $.75
Frenchs mustard $.30

The cashier was so funny, I went through the 15 or less line. I did 2 transactions at a time. I would pay for those 2, take them to my car and then come in for another 2. When I would come back through he would say, "hey I thought you just came through with papertowels? It was only 7.66 this time." He would get my card and then ask for my coupons. After the 2nd round he said, "come back soon." and then added "I'm sure you will."