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, August 27, 2008


I first want to apologize, Sorry. The other night I posted a Van Gogh picture and then realized I did not give you any kind of background for him.

Vincent Van Gogh is a very interesting character, oh excuse me, artist. He became an artist basically after everything else he tried in life failed. He worked in an art gallery selling art, he was a teacher, a bookstore worker and a preacher. Van Gogh is known as an impressionist. I really like his work. I love the bright colors and I really just want to touch his works of art. Don't they look chunky and rough and great? Art has the ability to arouse all your senses. It is to be taken in by sight, smell, taste and touch.

Van Gogh was mentally ill. He also had other infirmaries like epilepsy, psychotic attacks and delusions. Another little interesting yet desturbing fact is that the Van Gogh family had an elder son named Vincent who died at a young age. After this Vincent Van Gogh was born and was named after his dead older brother. I think this may cause me some mental illness. Notice his self-portraits he is never smiling.

Vincent moved to Paris, closer to his brother Theo and met many impressionists there. He would paint pictures everyday sometimes. Van Gogh painted so much that he would run out of money. His brother would send extra money when he had it, but Van Gogh would buy paint and go without eating for days at a time.

Gauguin, another artist, became one of Van Goghs friends and they lived together in the country for awhile until Gauguin came back to Paris to do art. Vincent went into a rage and that is where he cut off part of his ear. He later checked himself into an insane asylum and that is where he painted Starry Night. Why do I say to forget the umbrella and grab the crash helmet? If I ever see things flying around and swirling like The Starry Night painting I will be taking cover in a basement not under an umbrella. I have read that it is believed that Van Gogh was watching a meteor shower when he painted this.

Later Vincent Van Gogh shot himself in the chest and died two days later from the wounds.
This painting is called Wheatfield with Crows. See how dark this one is? See the path going into the dark? This was Vincent's last painting.
I think Van Gogh's story is sad. I can imagine him being tormented by his illnesses and not having God. He was only 36 years old.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

I went to Kroger tonight in the pouring rain

I went to Kroger tonight in the pouring rain. I really wanted to go by myself and take my time. I had a 55% savings tonight!

My total before coupons was $68.36 and after coupons I was at $44.93. Here is a list of everything I got.

1-12 pack of Diet Coke (FREE) thanks to a Kroger coupon
1 Fresh Express salad (FREE) with coupon
1 Rotisserie chicken 1.50 off coupon
6 packs of Kleenex 2 coupons for .50 off 3
7-8 packs of Danimals 7 coupons for .50 off any
2 bottles of Worcester sauce 2- .35 coupons
1 pack of Lenders bagels (FREE) with coupon I received for praising the company
2 Kroger cream cheeses
$15.00 in Kroger cheese it was on sale this week so I loaded up
1 Duncan Hines cake mix (FREE) thanks to a Kroger cash register coupon
4 packs of Take Alongs plastic Tupperware on sale for B1G1 and I had coupons for $1 off 2

It was a nasty night but at least it was not a Van Gogh starry night. If you ever hear a meteorologist say its a Van Gogh starry night, I suggest you leave the umbrella and take the crash helmet.

Monday, August 25, 2008

More Kroger Coupons

Today I went to the mailbox and there were more Kroger coupons, I jumped for joy. I love coupons! Here is a list of what I received.

.35 off Kroger baby carrots
.75 off red delicious apples
.60 off private selection artisan bread
1.50 off private selection creme or fruit pies
1.50 off fried chicken from the deli
1.50 off rotisserie chicken
2.00 off private selection pizza
.75 off private selection soup
1.50 off Kroger raw shrimp
20% off private selection smoked salmon
2.00 off private selection angus steak
1.50 boneless pork chops

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Newspapers Newspapers!

A couple of friends and myself had been getting free newspapers on Sundays from different sources and it was good. About a month ago things started tightening up. The papers were not available and we were not getting enough coupons and we started to stress about keeping a good supply of coupons. A couple of weeks ago I decided to call our local newspaper to see if we could just buy inserts or if we could buy papers in bulk. To my surprise the man at the newspaper set me up. For two weeks I have woken up to 25 Sunday papers delivered on my front porch for a price of $7.40 a week. Three friends and I share these papers so we each pay $7.40 a month for 6 papers a week. I love this because it has truly taken the stress out of finding newspapers and worrying if we will get coupons every week. As an added bonus when there is a really good coupon coming I can call and request more papers for that week.

I like this picture with the green. Coupons are just money waiting to be saved. Coupons are extra cash in my pocket.

Walgreens is starting to upset me

Tonight after my bible study I headed to Walgreens. I was going to get Skippy peanut butter, Pert shampoo and Cheerios. The peanut butter would have came to .40 per jar, the Pert is a monthly deal that would give me $2 in overage and the Cheerios are .99 a box. All of this are prices with coupons of course. Instead of finding great deals at Walgreens all I found were empty shelves. This Walgreens always has empty shelves. The only time I can find the sale items is if I go into the store on Sunday when the deal starts. The following is a copy of what I sent to the corporate customer service complaint line. I will keep you informed if I receive a response.

My comments to Walgreens:

I went to this store tonight to buy the advertised items. I went to get Pert shampoo, Skippy peanut butter and Cheerios. The Cheerios were out of reach so I went to the cashier to ask for assistance. She called someone on the p.a. system but no one showed up to help me. Then I went to get the Pert and the peanut butter only to find that the advertised items were gone. I have been to this store on different days through the week on many different occasions only to be disappointed with empty shelves. I have not shopped in Walgreens for at least a month due to this issue. Tonight I decided to try again and again it was a wasted trip for me.

End of Comments to Walgreens.

Can you tell I am a little mad?

Kroger Coupons

I went to Kroger about 10pm on Tuesday night this week. I found a recipe for smoke brisket cooked in the slow cooker and decided to try it. When I started adding ingredients to my slower cooker I realized that I did not have any Worchester sauce. I have been waiting for Worchester sauce to go on sale for ages now and have held on to my coupons. Off to Kroger I went. When I got there I realized I needed some other things like lettuce, corn, cucumber, taco seasoning etc... I got my things and went to check out. I had about $17 in stuff and with coupons it came to be just over $14. This was not a great trip but a necessary one. After I had paid, the kid handed me my receipt and a bunch of coupons. "Are these all mine?" I said, the kid said they were and I was very excited. I received a total of 5 coupons. I got one for a free Duncan Hines cake mix and another for $1.25 off of rotisserie chicken. Ladies and gentlemen Elvis has left the building!

Vacation Approaching

As vacation approaches I am making a mental list of all the things I need to take with us. As I was thinking the other day it hit me, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I will not have a camera for vacation. My point and shoot camera was broken by little hands last week and I do not have my big, exciting, expensive camera yet. When I have a moment to sit and think I often think of this fact. I envision myself trying to get good shots with a disposable camera and it turns my stomach. I envision myself taking pictures with my old Nikon SLR film camera and this is o.k. but it makes me wonder, "Will I be able to buy film?" This picture will be me this year taking photos with the oldie but goody. Maybe I should get me a hat like that. I will run my sad sob story by my husband who will probably tell me to get over it and a disposable will be fine. No sympathy at my house.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Good Wife or Dumb Woman

I had a yard sale a few weeks ago as I am sure some remember. I made a grand total of $880.00. This sale started out being a sale for me to raise money for my Nikon D80 camera. This camera is awesome! Excuse me as I wipe the drool from my keyboard. Here is a picture.
Anyway I had the money sitting in my account and was torn between putting money on debt or putting the money in my ING account to add to my camera fund. My husband really wanted to pay some debt but he very kindly said that I could get my camera.
Today I made out bills while I stared at my broken Nikon Coolpix (thanks to my littlest kiddie) sitting in front of me on the desk. "What to do?", I thought. Really there was not much of a decision to make, I decided to be a good help mate to my husband instead of a burden. I dumped $550.00 on debt. The rest is sitting in my account. I will decide what to do with this after next payday.
I know that God will bless this decision. He actually already has blessed this decision. My husband has had some burden lightened from his shoulders. I did not plan on having this camera so soon and I am content with not having it right now. I am convicted to pay cash for this camera so we will see.

My CVS this week

My deals at CVS worked this week. I ended up paying a total of $6.66 out of pocket and have $15 is ECB's for next week. Sorry no pics.
Here is what I got:

3 Jumbo packs of Huggies diapers
2 Childrens Advil
1 Skin Effects scrub
1 American Greeting card
1 Alavert

Thursday, August 14, 2008

UGH! My Camera

I am sorry to say that I will not have any real live pictures that I have taken on my blog for awhile. Last night I was in the other room and one of my children ran in and was yelling, "Mom, Mom come quick your camera!" I ran into the office to find my young child holding my camera and saying, "cheeseburger." This is what we say at our house to smile for a picture. Now the lens will not shut and when you actually look down into the lens it looks as if it is crooked and pushed way down inside. Also when I turn it on it says lens error. When I try to turn it off it just makes noises like its trying to close and then it turns off.

Hank's song is swirling in my head tonight. You know the words. "There's a tear in my beer and I'm crying for you dear. You are always on my mind."

I was talking to Lori today and we were trying to decide if this is Gods way of saying, "Kim get your Nikon D80." Or is he trying to say, "Kim you are spending to much time with this camera/blog/coupon thing, now be still."

I am opting toward the get your camera decision.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Man with a Plan

o.k. o.k. so it should read woman with a plan but it is what it is. Here is my plan for CVS this week. Please bare with me I have been sick and my head is still in a bit of a daze. When and if I can ever get to CVS this will be my deals.

WE need diapers so that is why these deals came about. I also have about $17 in ECBs going into this week.

1st transaction
Huggies 8.99
Childrens Advil $5.79
total is 14.78 plus tax
my coupons
$2 CVS coupon
$1.50 Huggies
$1 Advil
OOP 10.28 with 5.79 in ECB earned

2nd transaction
Huggies 8.99
2.99 American greeting card
coupons used
$1.50 huggues
$2 CVS coupon
$2.99 American Greeting card (I got it from the in store scanner a couple of weeks ago)
OOP $5.49 plus tax

3rd transaction
$5.79 Advil
$5.99 Alavert
coupons used
$2 CVS
$1 Advil
$4 Alavert
OOP $4.78 with 8.79 in ECBs earned

4th transaction
8.99 Huggies
$6.99 Skin Effects product
coupons used
$2 CVS
$2 Skin effects
trying to get 1 more Huggies coupon
OOP 10.48 plus tax with 10 ECB earned

I should have a total of OOP or ECB s $31.03 and I will earn $24.58 back. This is not a great deal but we need diapers.

My cash should be very minimal out of pocket because I will keep rolling my ECBs.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Obsessed and Loving It

I am going to share a secret with you all, I hope you don't mind. My secret is, saving money is obsessive. I remember way back when (January) when I started my couponing and I started the grocery game, I ran out and bought toothpaste and shampoo thinking I was getting a great deal. I bought toothpaste for $1 or $1.50 and shampoo for $1 or $2. I really thought these were great deals. Then I learned a few things along the way and I also learned about CVS. Now I cringe at the thought of spending $1 for toothpaste or shampoo. Isn't that funny?

I used to spend $250 every other week at Sam's Club and then spend, probably, $50 a week at Kroger on top of that. Now I stress out about spending $100 or more at Sam's Club and anything over $35 at Kroger is highway robbery.

Yes, using coupons and getting great deals is obsessive and I am as happy as a pig in mud doing so. I would like a moment to wallow in my obsession now.

The Yard Sale is OVER!


First let me correct an error from yesterday. At the close of business Friday our total was somewhere around $650.00 not $750.00. I got so excited with having a big wad of money that I guess I miss spoke.

Today was slower than yesterday but our grand total from last weekend and this weekend was?

It was!

It was!

Excuse me for posting so many pictures but I really really like to look at big wads of money and I really really really like to look at big wads of money that is mine. These pictures are only of this weekends money I put last weekends money in the bank already. I will transfer to my ING account next week.

Anyway our final total for our yard sale was ---- $880.20

Yay! I am very close to my camera. The only problem? I don't know if I want to put all that money on a camera now. I really really want the camera and I really really want to pay some debt.

HMMM. I will let my money sit and earn interest while I make my lists of why paying off debt is good and why having a $1000.00 camera is good. Let me tell you about my sweet husband. He told me tonight to buy my camera, is'nt that sweet? This even convicts me more to save the
money and then put it on debt. Or maybe buy him something big that he wants shhhh don't tell him.

Friday, August 8, 2008

The Yard Sale

We did a yard sale last Saturday and we are doing a yard sale today and tomorrow. I have to tell you, "I am exhausted!" I feel like I have been lifting 6ft tables for ever. Tomorrow is the last day, praise God. I will not be having a yard sale for at least another 10 years. If you hear me getting the urge to make some money and have a yard sale I give you permission to smack some sense back into me.

I do have to say the money is very good. We have made a total of $750.00 from last week to this and we still have one more day to go. I was going to use this money for my camera fund. That was before our water pipe broke, so now I think it will sit in my ING account and earn some interested while I decide what to do with it.

We had 5-6ft tables filled with nicely folded kids clothes and now we only have 4, Yeah! We are making progress!

Sorry no pics, I am to tired.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Michelangelo Buonarroti vs. Diego Rivera

Diego Rivera and Michelangelo Buonarroti painted frescos. Fresco is a technique where the artist adds pigment and a little water to wet plaster or lime mortar. When dry tah-dah.
This is such a cool piece of art. I have actually been to the DIA and touched it. O.k. o.k. I know I should'nt have touched but I could'nt resist. This piece of art is in a whole room. You can just stand in the middle and turn around and see this whole auto company, man and machine art. These pictures do not do it justice. The detail is amazing. Rivera was also married to Frida Kahlo. We will discuss her art another time. If you get a chance to see a picture of her check out her unibrow. All I can say is UNI-WOW!

Why is my heading Diego vs Michelangelo, you ask?
The Sistine Chapel ceiling is done in this same technique, fresco, and was painted by Michelangelo. So these two artists have that in common and here is a little fun fact as well.
When they did restoration work on the Sistine Chapel they found paint brush hairs imbedded in the plaster from Michael Angelo. Can you guess what they found in Diego Rivera's fresco? Jalepeno seeds! Yes he was known to paint and eat peppers and the seeds have been found in his art work years later. I think that is cool.

Another little tid bit. When Michelangelo was painting the Sistine Chapel he and the Pope did not get along. The Pope thought the painting should have went much faster and Michelangelo was kinda pompous. He was going to work at his pace (God complex). I have included a picture of Angelo (the B & W at the bottom) and one of the Sistine Chapel panels which displays God reaching out to touch Adams hand. Notice the face of God, does it look like anyone we know? HMMM, Michelangelo what were you thinking.

My New Best Friend

No I have not found another new store to get great deals from. What I have found is the British Broadcasting Corporation. Follow the link and then click on Big Toe Books. They have books and live radio for kids and they are all free. On the website this week is Alice in Wonderland, Henry the Cat and some other really good stories. There are always new stories coming. Check them out if you get a chance.