Monday, March 31, 2008

Frugal Dinner planning Mar 30th

Sunday Dinner over my mom

Mom Steak stir fry ( I didn't realize I got stir fry steak on marked down we usually do not do stir fry)

Tues Chicken, veggies and roasted potatoes

Wed Pork chops (I picked up a ton of thin cut pork chops that were on meat marked down-good deal)

Thurs Fish sticks and roasted potatoes

Fri Layered Ground beef crockpot

Sat Pizza

Sunday, March 30, 2008

CVS weekly extra care bucks deals 3/30-4/5

Here are the CVS starting today Of course check your coupons to see if you can match any up. I

ECB Specials
$5 ECB WYB $15 of the following: Fantastik, Scrubbing Bubbles, Shout,
Windex$.2.99, Palmolive Dish Soap $0.99, Suavitel Fabric conditioner 2/$7.00 – Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB 3 Kiss or Broadway Artificial Nails - Limit 1
$4.99 ECB WYB Softsoap Spa 12 oz - $4.99
$5 ECB WYB $15 Maybelline cosmetic item - Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Zantac 150 (24 ct) or Zantac 75 (30 ct) - 9.99 - Limit 1

$10 ECB WYB Accu-Chek Diabetes Monitoring Kit (Avia or Compact Plus) $19.99 Limit 2

$3 ECB WYB Bowl Appetite or Fiber One Bars 2 pk - $6.99 – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Gold Emblem Roasted or Smoked Almonds 21.6 oz - $7.99 – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB Three (3) Essence of Beauty Cosmetic Accessories or Bath Products – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB $15 Neutrogena Skin Care – Limit 5
$10 ECB WYB 24.7 Skin Care products – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB $15 of any Caress, Dove, Lever Bar Soap or Dove Body wash – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB $15 Garnier items – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB $15 Clean & Clear - starting at $4.29 – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB any University Medical Acne or Skin Care with regular retail price $19.99 or more – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB $15 of Jergens Moisturizer, natural glow (excludes 10 oz and trial sizes). John Freida Collection shampoo, conditioner or styler, Biore, Curel – Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB Two (2) Mennen Deodorant - 2/$6 – Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB Colgate 360 degree Micro Sonic toothbrush – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB $10 Abbott Nutrition product – Limit 5
$10 ECB WYB CVS/pharmacy One-Time-Use Video Camcorder - 29.99 – Limit 5
$10 ECB WYB CVS/pharmacy Digital One-Time-Use Camera - 19.99 – Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB Photo Book - 12.99 – Limit 5

$5 ECB WYB $15 Nivea, Nivea for Men or Eucerin - Limit 10

Natures Bounty Vitamins or Supplements
Colgate Toothpaste or Toothbrush
CVS Alkaline Batteries
All L’Oreal Foundation, Powder, Blush, Concealer or Lipcolor
Olay Body Wash
CVS Fish Oil or Coenzyme Q10
CVS Calcium Supplements
Life Fitness

Buy ONE Get ONE 50% off
Adult of Childrens Sunglasses
All lumene
Styli-Style or prestige cosmetics
Calvin Klein, Kenneth Cole, Tommy, Ralph Lauren or Liz Clairborne
All L’Oreal Mascara, Eye Shadow, or Liner
Ellin LaVar Hair Care
Marc Anthony Hair Care
Optimum Care Relaxer or Oil Therapy
Scunci Kids or Fashion Ornamentals
CVS Baby Care
Bic Disposable Razors
Reading Glasses by magnavision
All Icy Hot products
CVS Food Storage Bags or Wrap

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Frugal Spring Lawn care tips

Now that we are in the early stages of spring, there are plenty of things to do to prepare your lawn for the coming weeks. For the month of March, we will focus on several lawn care topics of interest: Compost, Irrigation, and Mowing


Organic compost is one of the easiest and most environmentally friendly ways to treat your lawn. At this point in the season, you should take great care not to apply any fertilization too early, which can lead to overwhelming growth while the weather is still cold and can cause stress to the turf. However, compost comprised of clippings from mowing your lawn can be gathered together and applied to your lawn later in the month or even at the beginning of April. Besides grass clippings, virtually any organic material can be used for compost.

The two key points when using compost are: 1.) Apply the compost so that it can make its way down into the turf and does not remain on the grass blades 2.) Water your lawn after you've applied compost, to activate the compost microbes and wash them onto your soil.


Have you ever wondered why your neighbor's lawn looks so green all the time while it's a struggle to maintain your own lawn? Perhaps your neighbor has a permanently in-ground irrigation system. Irrigation is key to maintaining a constantly green lawn and can help move your lawn to its greenest potential, especially during the growing season. Irrigation, if done correctly, can help you save time and even conserve water because of the control you have over the amount of water, and when and where your lawn will receive water.

Installing an irrigation system yourself is definitely a doable project if you plan accordingly and acquire the right equipment. However, it will be a lengthy project that can consume several of your weekends, depending on how large your lawn is. For irrigation equipment and drip irrigation supplies, you can either purchase or rent them from any modern hardware store.

If you are unfamiliar with irrigation systems or it will be your first time to install one, the best thing to do would be to contact a professional to guide you through the irrigation system process. A badly installed irrigation system can cost you over the next several years on needed repairs or revisions to the system.

During the planning stages for your irrigation system, it would be a good idea to get some advice from a knowledgeable person on the topic. For high-pressure systems, it is very difficult to plot exact spray patterns. Having a consultant on hand can help you determine specialized sprinklers and emitters for specific lawn needs. The technology of drip irrigation is constantly changing and it would be a good idea to talk to someone who knows the trends.

For March, you should irrigate your lawn about twice a week (unless it has been raining). Lawns are that over-irrigated can be more prone to pests, lawn diseases, or even promote a shallow root system.


Once your lawn turns green, it is time to mow. Make sure you have the lawn mower blades set at an appropriate height from 3/4 to 1 inch, keeping in mind that it may vary depending on the type of lawn you have. How often should you mow? For March, mowing your grass once a week should do the trick.

Keep in mind that cutting your grass less than once a week while the grass is actively growing can result in the immediate loss of a large quantity of leaf. This can come as a shock to the grass and may encourage an open turf prone to moss and weeds. Maintaining a consistent mowing schedule is also beneficial.

If you find that your grass has grown tall after coming back from a trip, you should tip it at the first cut and reduce the height at the next cutting a few days later. After that, you can resume your normal and recommended height for cutting.

March is the best time to begin mowing your lawn and by starting now, you can cultivate your lawn and keep the grass blades looking fine.

Fran Phalin is a homeowner and freelance editor/writer on things that work and is based in Austin, Texas. Fran has worked successfully with the guys at ABC to get her lawn care problems resolved.

ABC Pest & Lawn offers a comprehensive solution for lawn care service for you which includes mowing and edging.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Frugal Dinner planning Mar 23

Sunday Easter dinner

Mon Chicken, broccoli and stuffing casserole

Tues Chili

Wed Spaghetti and meatballs

Thurs Breakfast for dinner

Fri Clean out the fridge night!!

Sat Pizza

Sunday, March 23, 2008

CVS weekly extra care bucks deals 3/23-29

Here are the CVS starting today Of course check your coupons to see if you can match any up. I

ECB Specials
3/23 Limit 1 unless otherwise noted! Holiday week so slow week!
$2 ECB WYB Nilla Wafers, Chips Ahoy or Fig Newtons 12-16 oz 2/$5.00 – Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB Two (2) CVS Highly Defining Skin Care: 1.7-5 oz PSA $8.49 – Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Bengay Pain Relief $6.99 – Limit 1
$3 ECB WYB Clear Care Contact Solution $7.99 – Limit 1

$3 ECB WYB Two (2) Russell Stover Private Reserve Triple chocolate mousse or vanilla bean brulee 4.5 oz – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB any (1) new Revlon item shown: Colorstay Mineral Eye Shadow $7.99
Colorstay Mineral Foundation or Blush $11.99, Custom Creations Foundation $9.99 - limit of 5
$5 ECB WYB $10 TRESemme Hair Care – Limit 5
$2.99 ECB WYB Colgate Total Advanced Toothpaste Whitening, gel or advanced fresh 4-4.2 oz – Limit 5

All Maybelline Foundation, Powder, Blush, Concealer
Move Free
CVS Cleaning Pads/Cloths (swiffer type)

Buy ONE Get ONE 50% off
Got2B Styling Products
All Wet N’ Wild
CVS Pharmacy Razor Blades
All Sally Hanson Hair Removers
All CVS Suncare or Sunless tanners
All Milani Cosmetics
All Adult & Childrens Sunglasses
All papermate pens, highlighters, sharpies
All CVS Spectravite
All Life Fitness Vitamins or Supplements
All Ocuvite, Preservavision Vitamin & Mineral Supplements
All CVS Frames/Albums

Other deals
Irish Spring 3 pack $0.97
Softsoap Liquid Soap $0.97
Kellogg’s Cereal 2/$3.00
$0.88 Specials – ANY For $0.88 – Kleenex tissues, Colgate Toothbrush, Colgate Toothpaste, CVS Bagged Candy.

ECB = Extra Care Buck
PSA = Prices starting at
CRT = Cash Register Tape
WYB = When You Buy

Helpful websites!!!,f533

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Frugal Five Meet Mary

Mary is a frugal mom from Pennsylvania in her late 30s

What is your financial life?
I am married have been for 10 years. My husband and I have 1 son age 8. We have recently remodelled our kitchen and bathroom in the house we bought a few years back. Luckily it is a 30 year fixed mortgage with a good rate. My husband works the family business which is commmerical painting. I work part-time in a local insurance office for the past 2 years.

What is your budget buster?
Groceries, utilities and gas . Both are getting higher and higher. Seems no matter how I try to cut back, conserve, etc. I am spending more and more.

What is your favorite money saving tip?
Bring your own lunch to work! This is a huge money saver for my husband and me. You can easily spend between $6.00-$9.00 on lunch a day.

If you had an extra $1000 what would you do with it?
Since we have recently remodelled, I would like to add the finishing touches.

What is your best resource for frugal living?
My favorites places for saving money are and

If you would like to be profiled send an email to info @

Monday, March 17, 2008

13 frugal uses for Peroxide

I received this in my email and I thought I would share the benefits of peroxide! I think I will be buying some the next time I hit the market.

'I would like to tell you of the benefits of that plain little ole
bottle of 3% peroxide you can get for under $1.00 at any drug store.

My husband has been in the medical field for over 36 years, and
most doctors don't tell you about peroxide. Have you ever smelled
bleach in a doctor's office? NO!!! Why? Because it smells, and it is
not healthy! Ask the nurses who work in the doctor's offices, and
asked them if they use bleach at home. They are wiser and know

Did you also know bleach was invented in the late 40's? It's
chlorine, folks! And it was used to kill our troops. Peroxide was
invented during WWI in the 20's. It was used to save and help
cleanse the needs of our troops and hospitals.

Please think about this:

1. Take one capful (the little white cap that comes with the
bottle) and hold in your mouth for 10 minutes daily, then spit it
out. (I do it when I bathe.) No more canker sores , and your teeth
will be whiter without expensive pastes. Use it instead of

2. Let your toothbrushes soak in a cup of peroxide to keep them
free of germs.

3. Clean your counters and table tops with peroxide to kill
germs and leave a fresh smell. Simply put a little on your dishrag
when you wipe, or spray it on the counters.

4. After rinsing off your wooden cutting board, pour peroxide
on it to kill salmonella and other bacteria.

5. I had fungus on my feet for years until I sprayed a 50/50 mixture
of peroxide and water on them (especially the toes) every night and
let dry.

6. Soak any infections or cuts in 3% peroxide for five to ten
minutes several times a day. My husband has seen gangrene that would
not heal with any medicine but was healed by soaking in peroxide.

7. Fill a spray bottle with a 50/50 mixture of peroxide and
water and keep it in every bathroom to disinfect without harming
your septic system like bleach or most other disinfectants will.

8. Tilt your head back and spray into nostrils with your 50/50
mixture whenever you have a cold, plugged sinus. It will bubble and
help to kill the bacteria. Hold for a few minutes, and then blow
your nose into a tissue.

9. If you have a terrible toothache and cannot get to a dentist
right away, put a capful of 3% peroxide into your mouth and hold it
for ten minutes several times a day. The pain will lessen greatly.

10. And of course, if you like a natural look to your hair,
spray the 50/50 solution on your wet hair after a shower and comb it
through. You will not have the peroxide-burnt blond hair like the
hair dye packages but more natural highlights if your hair is a
light brown, faddish, or dirty blond. It also lightens gradually,
so it's not a drastic change.

11. Put half a bottle of peroxide in your bath to help rid boils,
fungus, or other skin infections.

12. You can also add a cup of peroxide instead of bleach to a
load of whites in your laundry to whiten them. If there is blood on
clothing, pour it directly on the soiled spot. Let it sit for a
then rub it and rinse with cold water. Repeat if necessary.

13. I use peroxide to clean my mirrors. There is no smearing,
which is why I love it so much for this. I could go on and on. It is
a little brown bottle no home should be without!

With prices of most necessities rising, I'm glad there's a way
to save tons of money in such a simple, healthy manner!

Frugal meal planning Mar 16th

My full pantry is helping keep my food bill down this week. I only needed to pick up some milk, bread and bananas plus a package of juice boxes.

Sunday Steak (got it on the marked down aisle) roasted potatoes, green beans

Monday Lasagna

Tuesday Chicken drums sticks, mashed potatoes, veggie

Wed Leftover lasagna

Thursday Taco Bar I got 4 boxes of tacos for 75 cents each because they were a little crushed! I will probably use two here

Friday Clean out the fridge night or ravoli if no leftovers

Saturday Homemade pizza

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Simplest ways to save money

Saving money lately has not been easy for most. The more people I talk to the more I realize that no one can save money for themselves and most people are driving themselves further into debt with credit cards and loans. Being able to save money for various things is key to lowering stress and increasing your quality of life.

The first step to saving is to evaluate where all your money goes. If you stop at Starbucks everyday for that coffee or like to shop, there is an easy way to cut back expenses. Most people have habits whether they like to admit it or not. Personally, I buy myself an energy drink everyday and found that I spend $60 a month on them. So instead of stopping at the corner store everyday, I started buying them in bulk and save a about a dollar a day. This may not seem like much but if you can do this with three items, it comes out to over $1000 a year.

Also, 90% of the people out there plan on saving but never get the chance because they spend all of their paycheck before they put money aside. It is crucial to PAY YOURSELF FIRST! Even if you just put $25 aside per paycheck you are on your way to creating a very nice buffer of money to be used how you see fit. Don't wait till after everything is paid to save. Save before and you will find that it is much easier to be diligent.

Next, to avoid using that ominous credit card or cards, leave them at home and hide them from yourself. If you have to, have your spouse hide it so you do not use it on a regular basis. I don't know how many times I have gone and seen something I want but not had the money to buy it so I use credit. The problem is you don't have the money so why spend it. Use your savings plan to do so, it may take longer but in the end it is worth it. You will not have to pay interest and you will save even more by doing so.

Finally, the easiest way to save a large amount of money at a time for those who get paid every two weeks is to realize that you have two extra pay check a year. So if you make $2000 a paycheck, plan ahead and figure out which paycheck goes to which bills and you will find that two months out of the year the is an extra $2000 to save. So in the end you have $4000 extra dollars a year.

These are very basic but simple ways to save and if you look at your expenses and income on a personal level you will find many areas you can save money in. Don't fall behind and stay as regular on your bills as possible and pay them off as quick as you can. Hopefully if you follow some of these tips you will find yourself saving $2000 - $10000 a year without changing much in your lifestyle. DON'T BE AFRAID TO LET THAT SAVINGS ACCOUNT BUILD. Forget what is in there and check it only a few times a year so you don't get the urge to spend it.

Check out more simple ways to save money

for even more ideas.

CVS weekly extra care bucks deals 3/16-3/22

Here are the CVS starting today Of course check your coupons to see if you can match any up. I am going to Easter stuff today!! Also perfect timing this week as we need to pick up more Omega 3 from Lifestyle!!

2 Day Sale Sunday & Monday Only – FREE’s after ECB’s!!!

$.99 Plastic Eggs Large 12ct or Extra Large 6ct $.99 ECB Limit 2
$.99 Confectionary Lane Jelly Beans 9oz $.99 ECB Limit 2
$4.99 Hershey's Pot Of Gold Premium or Nut Asst. 7.7-12oz $4.99 ECB Limit 2

ECB Specials Limit 1 unless otherwise noted!
$8.99 ECB WYB Maybelline Superstay Lipcolor Or Gloss $8.99
$1 ECB WYB Two (2) Coke 12pks 2/$6.00
$6 ECB WYB Venus Embrace Razor $9.99
$3 ECB WYB Schick Intuition Razor or 3pk Cartridges $8.99
$2 ECB WYB Two (2) M&M's Chocolate Candies 11-14oz 2/$6.00
$12 ECB WYB Two (2) Olay Definity $24.99
$3 ECB WYB Two (2) Russell Stover Private Reserve $3.29
$3 ECB WYB Lens or Eye Care Clear Care Twin Pack, Zadiator 5ml, or Genteal drop 25ml $14.99
$5 ECB WYB Claritin 30ct $18.99
$5 ECB WYB Buy Any 24/7 Skin Care Product
$1 ECB WYB Viva 8pk Paper Towels $6.49
$5 ECB WYB Buy $15 of Dove Products
$3 ECB WYB Buy $8 of Band Aid or Neosporin
$5 ECB WYB Buy $20 Easter Seal Products – shown Bayer $4.99, Aleve $2.99, Phillips MOM or Alka Seltzer PSA 4.19, Aleve-D $4.99, Alka Seltzer Plus $3.99, One a day/Citracal/Flintstones Vitamins B1G1 50% off PSA 6.79

$2.99 ECB WYB Listerine Smart Rinse for Kids $2.99 - Limit 2
$4.99 ECB WYB Oral B Cross Action Pro-Health or Vitalizer Toothbrush $4.99 - Limit 2
$10 ECB WYB Buy $25 of Maybelline or Garnier – Limit 2

$3 ECB WYB L'Oreal Preference Dream Blonde $12.99 - Limit 3

$3 ECB WYB L'Oreal HIP Eye Makeup $9.99 - Limit 4

$1 ECB WYB Two (2) Mars 8pk Fun Size $1.29 - Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Two (2) Hershey's Extra Large Bars 2/$3 - Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Benadryl Allergy 24ct, 4oz liquid or quick disolve strips 10ct $4.99 - Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB Sudafed/Sudacare Sudafed 10-24ct or Sudacare Shower Soothers 3ct $4.99 - Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB CVS Digital One Time Use Camera $14.99 - Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB CVS One Time Use Video Camcorder $24.99 - Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB 6x8 10 Page Photo Book $12.99 - Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB All Mennon Deodorant (excludes 24/7) $1.99 - Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB Buy $15 of Clean & Clear - Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB Buy $10 of Tresemme' Hair Care - Limit 5

Kodak Power Flash Camera $9.99
Vive Pro or L’Oreal Studio
Dove Hair Care
All CVS Vitamins, Minerals, or Herbals
Sweet N Low $2.39
Progresso Soup $2.79
Revlon Lipcolor
Covergirl TruShine, Incrediful Lip or ALL Advanced Radiance Foundation, Powder or Concealer
Move Free, Dietery Supplement Knox Nutrajoint, CosaminDS

Buy ONE Get ONE 50% off
Adult or Childrens Sunglasses (some exclusions apply)
All Reading Glasses by Magnavision
Scotch Packaging Tape
Life Fitness Energy Supplement
All Covergirl Cosmetics (some exclusions)
All Physcians Formula
All CVS Cotton Balls, Pads, Squares, premium Rounds or Ovals
John Frieda
Essence of Beauty Hair Accessories
Let’s Jam, Ampro, Eco Styler, or Isoplus Syling Gel
Cristophe Beverly Hills Hair Care
Neutrogena Mens Skin Care
CVS Pharmacy Hosiery by L’eggs or Trouser socks
Playskool Baby or Toddler Accessories

Other deals
Hersheys Kisses, Robins Eggs, or Miniatures 2/$3.00
Buy 2 Air Wick Oil Refills get a Free Warmer
Buy a Revlon Foundation at $9.99 get a free Revlon Age Defying Face Primer
Pampers Mega Pack 13.99
Contour Ascensia Glucose Monitor Free after MIR $30.00
Fab Laundry Soap $1.99

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Frugal Five Meet Patricia

Patricia is a frugal mom of 2 and 1 on the way from Virginia.

What is your financial life?

I'm a stay at home mom to two boys aged 4 and 2, with a baby due in June. My husband brings home a reasonable income but we have a lot of credit card debt and also have to run two cars because we live in the middle of nowhere. This makes life pretty expensive and things are tight at the moment. We have some considerable expenses coming up related to the new baby - like a bed for the 2 year old, car maintenance issues, and a double stroller. At the moment, these look impossible.
I also need to continue to menu plan and keep a tight rein on groceries/other household expenditure.

What is your budget buster?

My weakness is picking up little treats when on school run etc. This needs to stop. Last month I did it almost every day.

What is your favorite money saving tip?

Menu planning has been very helpful to me! I actually enjoy making menus. It keeps me from running to the grocery stores!

If you had an extra $1000 what would you do with it?

Right now it would go towards the new baby expenses.

What is your best resource for frugal living?

I am still learning about being frugal after many years of spend spend spend!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Frugal Dinner planning Mar 9th

Sunday Dinner at my mom's

Monday Layered Ground beef crockpot

Tuesday Creamy chicken and pasta in crockpot

Wednesday Pork chops

Thursday Leftover buffet

Friday Rotisserie Chicken ( I have been dying to try this and it might be cheaper than the cooking whole chicken)

Sat Leftover pizza from my son's birthday party

Sunday, March 09, 2008

CVS weekly extra care bucks deals 3/9-3/15

Here are the CVS Of course check your coupons to see if you can match any up

ECB Specials

$2 ECB WYB Dove Chocolate Easter Eggs, 2/$6 - Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Two (2) Pond's Towellettes or Cold Cream - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $10 of St. Ives Skin Care - Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Maybelline XXL Curl or Define a lash Mascara for $5.99 – Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Perfect 10 Hair Color $11.99 - Limit 1
$6 ECB WYB Venus Embrace Razor, $9.99 - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $10 of Irish Spring Bar Soap, Deodorant or Body Wash - Limit 1
$1 ECB WYB Oral-B Power Toothbrush $5.99 - Limit 1
$3 ECB WYB Alavert Non-Drowsy allergy relief 12-15 ct, $6.99 - Limit 1
$3 ECB WYB Miralax 30 ct. $20.99 - Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Alcon Systane Eye Drops, $14.99 – Limit 1
$10 ECB WYB CVS Pharmacy Brand Blood Pressure Monitor - Limit 1

$10 ECB WYB Dual Action Cleanse w/Green Tea Fat Burner - Limit 2
$2 ECB wyb Garnier $2.99 limit 2 (incl. shampoo, cond., and stylers)

$3 ECB WYB CVS Photo book 6 x 8, $12.99 - Limit 5
$10 ECB WYB ROC Products – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Loreal Wrinkle De-Crease, $17.99 - Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB $10 of Tresemme Hair Care - Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB Be Fine Skin Care - excludes trial size. Includes Cleanser, mask, toner, scrub, moisturizer, eye treatment, serum, exfoliator .5oz., sample kit, cooling kit, peeling mask kit. PSA $15.99 – Limit 5

All L’Oreal lipcolor
Nature Made/Nature’s Resource or Olay Supplements
M&M Easter Chocolate $3.49
Hershey’s Miniatures
Russell Stover Chocolates $7.99
Sprint Prepaid phone card
Campbell’s soup or Swanson chicken broth
Doritos (excludes baked)
Essence of Beauty Bath
Freeman Shampoo/Conditioner $3.99
Mentadent Twin Pack or Arm & Hammer Toothpaste
CVS Fish Oil or Coenzyme Q10

Buy ONE Get ONE 50% off
Photo frames/albums
All L’Oreal Face or Eye
All Almay Cosmetics or Skincare
Adult or Childrens Sunglasses
All CVS notebooks
CVS Alkaline Batteries
Select Fragrances
Futuro Support or Therapeutic Hosiery
All Bausch & Lomb advanced eye relief
Atkins Advantage or EAS Advantage Shakes
Iceland Health Omega-3 or Joint Relief Dietary Supplement
Liquid Dietary Supplement
CVS Glucosamine Chondroitin

Monday, March 03, 2008

Frugal Five Meet Gina

Gina is a frugal momma to be from Nebraska

What is your financial life?

I am 28 and pregnant with my first baby due in early July . I currently work from home part time My husband has a full time job in construction where he makes good money in warmer months. My husband and I have been stupid about using credit. We have totally paid off our credit cards several times in the past few years with big bonuses that he gets and then we charge them right back up again like idiots! We both know what bad deals credit cards are, we just get greedy about wanting something right now, I guess. Well, I have seriously had enough. We make a very nice income and I'm tired of feeling "Where the heck did our money go?". I want to be spending less then we earn, saving !

What is your budget buster?

It has been the credit cards! Hopefully we now got it under control!

What is your favorite money saving tip?

Stay at home! My plan is to not go out. While I do plan to get out of the house (walks around the neighborhood, maybe trips to the library), when I am out, I spend. I also plan for me and dear husband to eat all homemade meals. I also plan to put away the credit cards I have and only carry my debit card, I am also going to have my husband put away his credit card. We actually do not use our credit cards that much but we do not need them, I don't want the temptation.

If you had an extra $1000 what would you do with it?

If I had an extra $1000, I would use it to put aside to use when I have the baby in the summer.

What is your best resource for frugal living?

The internet is so full of money saving ideas. However my favorite place is

Frugal Dinner planning Mar 2nd

Sun Steak, potatoes and green beans

Mon Spaghetti and meatballs

Tues Mexican Lasagna

Wed Ham and cheese roll-ups

Thurs Pizza out for cub scout fundraising night

Fri Clean out the fridge night

Sat Pizza

Sunday, March 02, 2008

CVS weekly extra care bucks deals 3/2-3/8

Here are the CVS sale starting today. I am not impressed with any of the deals right now. Of course check your coupons to see if you can match any up

The toothpaste deal is really good!!

ECB Specials

$2 ECB WYB Neutrogena Mineral Sheers Foundation or Blush – PSA $11.79 – Limit 2
$2 ECB WYB Tylenol or Motrin IB 80-100ct. $8.99 - Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Bounce or Downy Lint roller or refill, Fabric Softener liquid 34 oz or Sheets 45-80 ct. 2/$7.00 - Limit 1
$4 ECB WYB Keri Moisture Therapy Lotion 15oz or serum 4oz $4 - Limit 1
$6 ECB WYB Gillette Venus Embrace Razor $9.99 - Limit 1
$6 ECB WYB Gillette Fusion Phenom $9.99 - Limit 1
$10 ECB WYB Rogaine Triples - Limit 1
$10 ECB WYB Alli $59.99 - Limit 1

$2.99 ECB WYB Colgate Total Advanced Toothpaste, Advanced Clean Whitening Paste or Advanced Fresh 4 oz. 2.99 - (limit 5)
$5 ECB WYB Gillette Mach 3 Razors 3ct. $7.99 - limit 5

$2 ECB WYB $10 of New CoverGirl products CoverGirl TruBlend Makeup foundation, powder, concealer or blush $6.99, Outlast All-Day Lipcolor $6.99, Lashblast Mascara $6.99 - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $10 of All Garnier Nutritioniste PSA $5.99 - Limit 2
$5 ECB WYB $20 of Neutrogena Skin Care - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $10 of Any Tresemme product - Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB $15 of John Frieda
$5 ECB WYB $10 of these Febreze - Noticeables starter kit, dual refill or candle $6.99 - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $15 of any Duracell Batteries - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $10 of Hershey's - Limit 1
$10 ECB WYB $20 of Novartis Pain Relief - excedrin, bufferin, doan's, nodoz or Ascriptin, prices starting at $3.99 - Limit 1
$10 ECB WYB $20 of Maalox, Gas-X, Ex-Lax, Benefiber or Perdiem –
Limit 1

Nature's Bounty Vitamins or Supplements
All Maybelline Mascara
Twizzlers $2.29
Russell Stover Gift Box $11.99
All L'Oreal HIP Lip, Eye or Face
Arizona Tea $.99

Buy ONE Get ONE 50% off
Wrigley's Multi-Pak Gum $2.49
Noxzema Disposable razors, Shave Gel, Shave Cream
Olay Cloths, Cleanser, Scrub, Day or Night Cream
All Neutrogena Eye Makeup
Maybelline Minerals
Maybelline Volume Seduction Lip Gloss
All Essence of Beauty Cosmetic Accessories
All Physicians Formula Organic Face Cosmetics
Almay TLC Foundation, Intense Eye Shadow or Mascara or Makeup Remover Pads
Revlon ColorStay foundation, eye shadow, blush, Limited Edition cosmetics or Custom Creations foundation
Johnson's Baby Care - Buddies, powder, lotion, oil, wash, shampoo, balm, bedtime washcloths, or Desitin original
Reading Glasses by Magnivision
Life Fitness Heart Health Supplement
CVS/Pharmacy Glucosamine Chondroitin

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Free and cheap lattes

Starbucks is closing for a few hours of training today so take advantage of the free or cheap offers coming from it competition.

Dunkin Donuts 99 cents latte between 1-10pm on Tuesday. Free in Chicago area

Houston area McDonalds will be giving away free iced coffees.

Here are some other great free coffee today

Monday, February 25, 2008

Frugal Dinner planning Feb 24th

We went to the Cub Scout Blue and Gold banquet on Saturday night and go to take home a ton of leftovers. Chicken parm and ziti from a local resturant-s0 that is giving us several dinners this week. I don't like freezing pasta.

Sunday Chicken Parm and ziti

Mon Chicken parm subs

Tuesday Chicken Parm and ziti

Wednesday Meatloaf, baked potatos, green beans

Thursday Turkey, broccoli and stuffing casserole (this is really simple a box of stuffing mixed in with cream of mushroom soup, broccoli and turkey. You can add some cheese-Swiss or cheddar works really well here)

Fri Clean out the fridge night or soup. I was able to pick up a great deal on Progresso soup

Sat Pizza

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Here are the CVS sale starting tomororw. I am not impressed with any of the deals right now. Of course check your coupons to see if you can match any up

ECB Specials
$5 ECB WYB $10 Assorted Nestle products – Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB Schick Titanium or Trimmer $7.99 – Limit 1
$6 ECB WYB Gillette Venus Embrace or Fusion Phenom $9.99 – Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Two (2) Stayfree Pads/Carefree Liners 2/$10 – Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Tylenol RR PM/Extra Strength (20/24 ct) $4.99 – Limit 1
$1 ECB WYB Softsoap or Irish Spring $1.79 – Limit 1
$1 ECB WYB Softsoap Bodywash $3.99 – Limit 1

$10 ECB WYB $20 Revlon Cosmetics or Beauty Tools – Limit 3

$2 ECB WYB Johnson's Lotion – Limit 5

All CVS Vitamins, Minerals, or Herbals
Gold Emblem Nuts
CVS Power Flash Camera
CVS Alkaline Batteries
L’Eggs Tights or Leggings
Nature made Heart Health
Osteo Bi-Flex

Buy ONE Get ONE 50% off
CVS Food Storage Bags
All Artificial Nails
Select Designer Fragrances
Maybelline Minerals
Organix shampoo, conditioner, mousse, coconut oil or serum
Christophe Beverly Hills Hair Care
Ocuvite PreserVision Vitamin Supplements
All One A Day, Citracal, or Flintstones Vitamins
Special K Protein Bars
Bic Disposable Razors
CVS Foot Care Beauty Tools

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Young families and emergencies

While at my mother's house on Sunday evening, my mom got a call from my aunt. We immediately knew from the Oh Sh**T that it wasn't good news and thought immediately it was my uncle. However it was my 28 year old cousin who was in the hospital and thought he had a stroke.

That knocked the stuffing out of me. My cousin is also the primary breadwinner for his beautiful family, a wife and 2 young daughter 4 and 1 years old. They also bought a home 2 years ago. He was doing well at his job and just got a promotion.

Some of my worst money financial fears include loosing my husband or him loosing the ability to work.

All Young families should have the following check list:

1) Disability insurance usually this is a job benefit take advantage of it
2) Life insurance while you work does offer it, get a separate term life policy
3) Emergency fund While my cousin may have disability insurance times like this is when you do not need the extra stress of paying bills .
4) Medical Insurance You never know when an accident or a medical emergency will hit.

Joining in with Mom for the Weekend Rewind Blog Hop Linky thingy... do join in!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Frugal Five Meet Single Guy

Single Guy is from Atlanta, GA who is trying to fix his past money mistakes and has a goal of paying off his non-mortgage debt by December 2009. He shares his informative financial journey at

What is your financial life?

I am single, 30 years old with no kids. I have a mortgage on my primary home and a mortgage on my rental property. I do have one income and rental income. I have no credit card debt besides current month charges that will be paid in full next month.

What is your budget buster?

My biggest budget busters are eating out. I used to eat out every day and
sometimes twice a day. I am now starting to take my lunch to work and I am
already noticing the difference in my budget.

What is your favorite money saving tip?

My favorite money saving tip is not paying bank fees. I make sure all my
bank accounts are free to use and maintain. A monthly bank fee may not seem
like a lot but it certainly adds up.

If you had an extra $1000 what would you do with it?

If I had an extra $1000, I would use it to reduce the principal balance on
my car loan. This is the debt I am currently working to pay off.

What is your best resource for frugal living?

My best resource for frugal living is maintaining my personal finance blog @ Maintaining a finance blog helps keep me
"accountable". I am also a member of the M-Network which is a network of
personal finance blogs that have joined forces to bring readers the best
content possible. There are a total of 9 blogs in the network. The M-Network
can be viewed at:

Tips to cut down on laundry drying time

My electricity bill has been going through the roof lately. I am trying to get kids to make sure radios, lights and tv are off when they are not in the room.

Cutting down on using the dryer is what I am working on as well-here are some tips on how to reduce drying time.

Place a clean, dry towel in with the wet load. The dry towel will help absorb moisture cutting down the drying time needed by as much as 25%.

Include a few tennis balls in each dryer cycle. The
tennis balls not only cut drying time by 25% - 50%, but also
fluff the clothes to a delicate softness.

For heavy items such as jeans and towels, put them through an additional "spin" cycle after your wash is done. Heavier items retain water even after a regular spin cycle and an additional spin cycle will cut down on their drying time.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Frugal Dinner planning Feb 17th

This will be a pantry freezer challenge week-the kids are home from school for vacation and I feel like we are broke. I am really trying to get my grocery bill down and watching last minute take-out etc. March is always an expensive month for us-life insurance, car exise tax, water bill so a few times a year we try to do a pantry challenge. I only spent $30 yesterday for my weekly grocery shopping which is fairly good!! I can probably stretch it for next week as well!!

Sunday Pizza at my mom-having a small family get together for my sister's birthday.

Monday Turkey dinner with all the fixings!! Turkey is from Thanksgiving-I always buy an extra one. Stuffing mix is from then too-can beat Stove top costing 39 cents a box with coupons.

Tuesday Cheesey Tortellini in the crock pot will use ground turkey instead.

Wed Turkey enchiladas

Thurs Leftover cheesy tortellini if leftovers or soup and sandwich night

Fri Leftover turkey enchiladas

Sat Pizza

Saturday, February 16, 2008

CVS weekly extra care bucks deals 2/17-2/23

Here are the CVS sale starting tomororw . Of course check your coupons to see if you can match any up

ECB Specials
$15 ECB WYB $30 of these items: - limit 1
Ziploc/Hefty 2/$5, Glade Air Freshener 2/$3, Glade Scented Oil Refill candle or Plug Ins 2/$5, Scrubbing Bubbles Automatic Shower Cleaner $17.99, Energizer $5.29 , Kleenex Family Size 2/$5, Huggies Jumbo Pack $8.99, Huggies Baby Wipes Refill $4.99, Depends or Poise, Poise Panty liners $2.50, Cottonelle 12 pk Double roll $5.99, Cottonelle wipes tub or refill 42 ct 2/$4, Palmolive 0.99, Kotex 2/$5 , Viva 8 pk paper towels $6.49

$6 ECB WYB Banana Boat Sun Dial - limit 1
$10 ECB WYB $20 of any Covergirl Cosmetics - Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Perfect 10 Hair Color $13.99 - Limit 1
$6 ECB WYB Venus Embrace $9.99 - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB Claritin $18.99 - Limit 1
$1 ECB WYB Neosporin $4.99 - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB Zantac 75 or 150 - Limit 1
$4 ECB WYB Prilosec OTC $26.99 - Limit 1

$10 ECB WYB $20 of any Eucerin Product – PSA $4.99 - limit 2

$5 ECB WYB $24.99 of Skin Effects - limit 3

$3 ECB WYB CVS Flash Camera $9.99 - Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Colgate Toothpaste or Toothbrush $2.99 - limit 5

Progresso Soup
Life Fitness Vitamins/Supplements
All Maybelline B1G1F – Sunday & Monday ONLY!!!
Post Cereal
Gillette Shaving Cream
CVS Cleaning Pads/cloths

Buy ONE Get ONE 50% off
All Maybelline – Tuesday through Saturday (see 2 day sale!)
All Wet N’ Wild
All L’Oreal HIP
All Physicians Formula
Gerber Baby food, juice, or cereal

Two Day Sale – Sunday/Monday
All Maybelline B1G1F – B1G1 50% off after Monday
Hooded Sweatshirt $4.99 - $6.99 after Monday
Craig 512MB MP3 player or Coby Ultra Compact DVD player $19.99 - $29.99 after Monday

Friday, February 15, 2008

A big case of I want it!

This lady should have called Suze Orman show to do the segment Can I Afford it! She would be denied denied denied big time.

Instead she went out bought a 100k car on a disability check Yikes her monthly payment is more than 1/2 of her monthly $2500 disability check.

I don't think she is playing with a full deck-accept some personal responsibility on making a decision like that. Instead she is blaming the car dealership, they are not innocent either but you had a big case of the "I want it." You want a 100k car because of the status, the image it shows.

Freebie Friday and coupons

Enjoy these freebies!!

Poise pads

Friskees cat food coupon

Purina cat food sample

Target in store coupons

Free Dove Lotion

Quaker Simple Harvest™

Free Deal or No deal online game

chicken of the sea tuna sample

Rice Krispies® - Special Offers $1.00 off

redbox $1.00 dvd rental

free t-shirt

L'Oréal VIVE PRO sample

Get Free Gift Cards, Airline Miles, Vacations & more at MyPoints.

Hot Mama Makeover
Free book!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Do you really need to spend money on Valentine's day?

I am not getting flowers, chocolate or even a card for this Valentine's day!

I am not giving anything either!!

I've never really been a fan. The whole holiday seems designed to do nothing more than force you to buy unnecessary things for your partner. Wal-mart, Target, the flower and jewelery shops all love this holiday because people spend so much money proving to someone that they love you. Luckily, my husband sees it the same way. We generally don't go out of the way to do anything special on Valentines Day.

I have 3 great boys and a husband whom I love more than anything. So on this day, I want them all to know I love them, and I don't need a special day to remember that.

Working Mom meal planning tips

Here are some tips for the busy working mother to improve her meal planning and keep out of the fast food joints!

Organize your freezer if you cook ahead and freeze. Label the item,
date of freezing so you use up food in order. Freeze in packs of
single meals. Be sure to freeze your food in hard containers to
avoid frost bite.

Organize your shopping list to for a 2 week period. Have a column on
the family blackboard where everyone puts down what needs to be
bought. Saves you having to do all the thinking.

Make sure that everyone above 9 years in the house knows how to a)
cook rice b) make a sandwich c) cook eggs d) wash up after!

Plan the menu for the week. Put the day's menu on the family
blackboard. Say when frozen packs will be used; when you will be
cooking fresh; and when another family member does. You can check out my weekly frugal meal planning for food ideas.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Driving a million miles

We only have 106k miles on our 1996 Dodge Caravan so I was completely in awe when I read about the Million Mile Truck

Frank Oresnik of Catawba made national news when his 1991 Silverado was about 1,200 miles short of the milestone. He reached it last Friday near Fond du Lac. Chevy’s public relations and advertising people filmed the occasion. He credits regular maintenance for the truck’s long life. It’s had about 300 oil changes between business trips.

I would have to say Frank's middle name is frugal! Most people would give up or need to trade-up. Many people who are Car rich cash poor could take a lesson on how Frank is spending his money.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Frugal Five Meet Anna Marie

Anna Marie calls her self a frugal newbie really trying to get her act in gear and is in the learning stages

What is your financial life?
I have three children from my first marriage that live with us full time. My husband has a daughter who lives with her mom. I work part-time while Dave works full-time in construction. Both of us had messy divorce messes and we are trying to pay off our credit card debt. We would like to buy a house but we are currently renting a 3 bedroom condo.

What is your budget buster?

I have been way overspending for a very very long time. I am a "bargain" shopper and have trouble resisting a good sale. I generally buy items on clearance but still tend to buy more than we need.

What is your favorite money saving tip?
Stay home and make your home a haven. You don't need to go to the mall or to the movies to have fun. I try to keep our entertainment budget reasonable and stay at home.

If you had an extra $1000 what would you do with it?

I would put it towards our credit card debt!!

What is your best resource for frugal living? is a great resource of frugal living!

Thanks Anna Marie for sharing all of your story! Let us know if you would like to be profiled in the Frugal Five

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Frugal meal planning Feb 10th

Sunday Pizza

Monday Beef tips and creamy spinach

Tuesday Pork chop

Wednesday Spaghetti and meatballs

Thurs Ham calzones (I have a ton of ham to get rid of)

Fri Sweethearts dance at the school they are serving pizza or hot dogs

Sat Pizza

Trying to save money on your food bill Grocery store savings has super ideas on how to really cut it in half!

Saturday, February 09, 2008

CVS weekly extra care bucks deals 2/10-2/16

Here are the CVS sale starting tomororw . Of course check your coupons to see if you can match any up

ECB Specials
$1.29 ECB WYB Gatorade G2 20oz. $1.29 – Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB $10 of Olay, Zest Body Wash or Quench Lotion - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB Three (3) Essence of Beauty Bath products - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $20 of Be fine Skin Care PSA $15.99 – Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $15 of Dove Pro Age, Vitalizer or cleansing pillows - Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Trojan 12ct PSA $8.99 - Limit 1
$6 ECB WYB Gillette Fusion Phenom $9.99 - Limit 1
$6 ECB WYB Gillette Venus Embrace Razor $9.99 - Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Benefiber or Excedrin $3.99 – Limit 1
$10 ECB WYB Dual-Action Cleanse with Green Tea $44.99 – Limit 1
$3 ECB WYB Visine – Limit 1
$3 ECB WYB Claritin 12 hour 20ct or 24 hour 15-20ct $15.99 - Limit 1

$5 ECB WYB $20 of P&G Products – Limit 1
Dawn $.99, Cascade $3.49, Tide Liquid 24-32 loads, powder 31-40 loads $5.44, Duracell Alkaline Batteries $5.29, Charmin 9 Pack Bathroom tissue $4.99,
Bounty Paper Towels 8 pack $5.99, Folgers 39oz. $5.99, Always maxi or ultra thin pads 14-24ct, pantiliners 34-60ct. $2.99, Pampers Jumbo Pack $8.99, Crest TP or Oral B TB 2/$5.00, All Olay Regenerist Facial care $15.99, Pantene Pro-v Shampoo, Conditioner, styler or treatment PSA $4.19

$5 ECB WYB K-Y Intrigue personal lubricant 2.75oz $18.99 - Limit 2
$5 ECB WYB Two (2) Nutrisse or Garnier 100% Haircolor 2/$10.00 - Limit 2

$1 ECB WYB Lubriderm Lotion $7.79 - Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB Photo Book 10 pages, 6x8 $12.99 – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Colgate Toothpaste $1.88 – Limit 5 – like we need MORE toothpaste!
$2.50 ECB WYB Life Fitness Everyday Omega-3 Soft chews 30ct – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Advil tablets 165ct, liquid gels 135ct, or PM 80ct – Limit 5
$10 ECB WYB Nicorette, NicoDerm CQ or Commit – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Cocoa Via Snacks $4.99 – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Three (3) Honey Nut Cheerios/Original Cheerios $4.29 - Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB Ascencia Contour Blood Glucose Test Strips 25ct $29.99 – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Two (2) Hershey’s Chocolate Pouch 2/$5.00 - Limit 5
$10 ECB WYB Ameal BP Capsules 60ct or chewables 90ct $29.99 – Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB Renu MultiPlus Twin Pack 24oz $12.99 - Limit 5

Nature Made, Natures Resource or Olay Vitamins PSA $3.99
All Revlon Lipcolor PSA $6.49
Kleenex Tissues $2.29
Kodak Powerflash Camera $9.99
Maybelline Minerals foundation, powder, blush or concealer PSA $7.99
Covergirl Advanced Radiance or Clean makeup PSA $4.99
Dove Hair Care shampoo, conditioner or styler PSA $4.29
Arrid or Arm and hammer deodorant PSA $3.19
Rhoto V Eye Redness Relief
ALL CVS Glucosamine Chondroitin PSA $19.99

Buy ONE Get ONE 50% off
Womens/Mens Fragrances
Adult or Children's Sunglasses PSA $5.99
All Almay Cosmetics & Skin Care
CVS Alkaline Batteries
Kodak Picture Maker Print 8x10
ALL Almay Cosmetics or Skincare PSA $1.99

Other deals
Pampers Jumbo Pack $8.99 – also part of ECB deal!
Pepsi 12 packs 3/$10.00
Hersheys Pot of Gold $3.88
Russell Stover Chocolates $4.99
Kelloggs Cereal or SnackBars 2/$5.00
Kellogs Cereal $1.99
Nabisco or Keebler 5/$5.00
Pringles Potato Crisps $0.88
Buy Perfect 10 Haircolor GET FREE Nice n’ Easy Root Touch Up

Friday, February 08, 2008

2008 financial goals-monthly check in

Each month I am going to do a check in to make sure I am on track for 2008!!

1) Continue to fund husband 401k to 15%

This is on automatic pilot!!

2) Increase monthly contribution to Roth $400 a month

I missed my January contribution but it is all set for Feb!!

3) $100 a month each (total $300) towards 529 for 2 sons and a mutual fund account for my 3rd son

On automatic withdrawals from my checking account!

4) Do estate planning

Why am I dreading on doing this I need to find a lawyer.

5) Big purchase a new used car. My husband's mini van is now 12 years old with 106,000 miles. This will probably be in the middle of the year. My 3 yr car loan will be done in June. I do not want to do a monthly payment of more than $250. We will use tax refunds plus my self employment tax savings (I save 25% of all of my money just in case) for the downpayment.

I am dreaming of Honda and Toyotas but I am really debating do I really want one of them vs a Chevy or a Dodge. I can get lower miles for less cost.

6) New couch We need them big time now.. just waiting for some sales.

No sales have caught my attention just yet!!

7) Save $200 a month towards bathroom remodel for 2009

My $200 in January went towards a new toliet. Our old toliet sprang a leak and we bought a toliet for $169. My husband and Dad installed it.

Additional thing we been meaning to change!

Adjusted husband tax withholdings at work to get more monthly back.

For February
Things are tight right now and my husband's commission checks really be cut. Ack. So more budgetting and NO EATING OUT! We have my son's friend's birthday sleepover this weekend and usually we would get pizza or Burger king for all the kids. Nope this year it will simply be hot dogs, mac and cheese and fries.

My electricity bill is going up and I am making sure all lights and radios are off! I really need to keep the kids on task with this.

I need to pick up some more freelance work. I am also debating whether to put my name in for subbing in the Fall. I have still have two kindergarten kids home 1/2 the day.

Friday Freebies and coupons

Some great freebies this week!

Free Gift for Breastfeeding and Supplementing Moms

Free 1 yr subscription to Disney Family Fun magazine

Free baby wipes

FLAT EARTH® |veggie chips coupon for free bag

Corazonas Chips

Jergens Natural Glow

Print Grocery Coupons

South Beach Living sample

Chinese Tea

Do your federal taxes for free

Orville Redenbacher free popcorn

Airborne Health samples

Dove Hair care sample

Netwinner Have you check out this yet? Simply spin the wheel and earn points. Rack up the points and get Mastercard gift cards Working on paying for some of my Christmas shopping this way!

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Frugal Dinner Planning Feb 3rd

Here is what our dinner plans are this week:

Superbowl Sunday!! Homemade pizza and lots of wings !! GO PATS!!

Monday Layered Ground beef crockpot This was on last week's menu plan but we had a crazy Monday evening with one of the kids being sick.

Tuesday Baked chicken pizza -simply smother cheese with cheese and peperoni-very good

Wednesday Hamburger goo (simply hamburger and noodles mixed together-very good)

Thurs Ham and cheese calzones

Fri Clean out the fridge night!

Sat Hot Dogs My son is having a sleep over this night with friends

Saturday, February 02, 2008

CVS weekly extra care bucks deals 2/3-2/9

Here are the CVS deals for starting tomorrow. There are some coupons from $2.00 off 10 to $15 off $75 CVS printable coupons that expire 2/3 but still work for a super deal!! Of course check your coupons to see if you can match any up

ECB Specials

$2 ECB WYB Two (2) M&Ms 2/$4 - Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Two (2) Dove Minis 2/$6 - Limit 1
$4 ECB WYB $12 Slim-Fast Optima - Bars or Shakes 6ct - Limit 1
$5 EBC WYB $15 ThermaCare Wraps - Limit 1
$20 ECB WYB Nova Max Monitor $29.99 Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $15 Mega-T Green Tea Dietary Supplement Limit 1
$10 ECB WYB Two (2) Excedrin - ES, Migraine, PM, Tension or Back & Body (100 ct) $6.99 - Limit 1
$10 ECB WYB Omron Blood Pressure Kit PSA $49.99
$10 ECB WYB Nicorette, Nicoderm CQ or Commit PSA $39.99
$10 ECB WYB Freestyle Lite Blood Glucose Monitor $29.99 (+19.99 rebate in box makes free after MIR)
$4 ECB WYB Zyrtec 10mg (30 ct)
$10 ECB WYB Two (2) Theraflu, Buckley’s, Comtrex, Triaminic or 4 Way - Limit 1
$3.99 ECB WYB Garnier Fructis Shine Burst and Strength & Repair – Shampoo/Conditioner (13 oz), Hair Masque (6.8 oz) $3.99 - Limit 1
$3 ECB WYB Two (2) John Frieda Weather Works – Shampoo, Conditioner, Frizz Ease Sealant PSA $5.99 - Limit 1
$10 ECB WYB Rogaine Triples - Limit 1
$6 ECB WYB Gillette Fusion Phenoma Manual or Power $9.99 - Limit 1
$2 ECB WYB Perfect 10 Hair Color $11.99 - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $15 Neutrogena Skin Care PSA $2.49 - Limit 1
$5 ECB WYB System JO Personal Lubricant for Woman - Limit 1
$3 ECB WYB Vagistat-1 or –3 $12.99 - Limit 1
$10 ECB WYB $20 Duracell Alkaline Batteries - Limit 1
$5 ECB Brita Pitcher Filters (3 pack) $17.99 - Limit 1

$10 ECB WYB $20 P&G – Crest Pro-Health Rinse (500ml), Toothpaste $3.99, Oral-B Vitality Rechargeable Toothbrush/Brush Heads (3 ct) $17.99, Glide Floss or Oral-B Satin Floss $3.99, Oral-B Pulsar Vibrating Toothbrush $4.99 - Limit 1

$5 ECB WYB $10 Colgate Battery Operated Toothbrush $5.99; Colgate Total, Luminous, 2in1, Max Fresh (4.23-4.6 oz), Navigator or Active Toothbrush 2/$5, Irish Spring or Softsoap Body Wash $3.99, Mennen Deodorant (excludes Men’s 24/7) $1.99, Mennen Speed Stick 24/7 For Men $2.99, Fabuloso or Murphy Oil Soap, Suavital Fabric Conditioner 2/$7, Palmolive Dish Liquid (13 oz, assorted) $.99, Irish Spring or Softsoap Hand Soap - Limit 1

$2 ECB WYB Afrin or Coricidin - $5.99 Limit 2 (Buzz mfg coupons for FREE so moneymaker if you have Q's!)

$5.49 ECB WYB Maybelline Eye Shadow Trio (Expert Wear, assorted) $5.49 - Limit 3
$2 ECB WYB Aveeno Ultra Calming Facial Care - limit 3
$5 ECB WYB $15 Maybelline New York Mascara or Lip – XXL Curl Power, Define-A-Lash, Volume Waterproof Mascaras, Volume Seduction Lip Gloss - Limit 3

$2 ECB WYB L’Oreal Infallible Lip Color $9.99 - limit 4

$5 ECB WYB Two (2) CVS/pharmacy Regenerating or Highly Defining Skin Care - Limit 5

CVS/pharmacy Alkaline Batteries
CVS/pharmacy Power Flash Camera $7.99
Extreme Energy Drink
ALL Osteo Bi-Flex
Alka-Seltzer Plus Liquid, Tabs, or Liquid Gels PSA $4.99
Nature’s Bounty Vitamins or Supplements PSA $3.99
Campbell’s Soup or Swanson Chicken Broth $1.19-1.39

Buy ONE Get ONE 50% off
Mega-T Green Tea Dietary Supplement *also an ECB deal!
Frangrance Gift Sets PSA $5.99
Photo Frames/Albums (excludes digital)
CVS Hosiery by L’eggs or Trouser Socks
Neutrogena Moisturizer or Emulsion & Cosmetics
All Essence of Beauty Cosmetics Accessories
Lumene Cosmetics or Skin Care
ALL L’Oreal Face, Eye, or Lip (excludes Infallible)
All Sally Hansen, Healing Beauty, or LaCross PSA 0.99
Adult & Child Sunglassess
CVS Fish Oil and Coenzyme Q10
All One A Day Citracal or Flinstones Vitamins
All Futuro Supports

Other deals
Cheer, Gain, Woolite 24-40 loads $3.99
Quaker Quick Oats $1.69 ($0.60 Q’s out there)
Huggies Mega Packs $13.99
VO5 Shampoo/Conditioner $0.77
General Mills Cereal 2/$5.00

CVS February Monthly deals

CVS extra value deals for the month of Feb (1/26-2/23) Check out the CVS printable coupons
good through 2/3 to get even better deals.

$1.79 ECB WYB CVS Childrens Chewable Aspirin 81mg 36ct $1.79 – Limit 5
$4 ECB WYB Zyrtex Allergy 10mg Tablest 30ct – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Neutrogena TGel or T/Sal Shampoo/Conditioner – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Nizoral Anti Dandruff Shampoo 4 or 7 oz – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB CVS Dryers, Curling Irons, Straighteners – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Biore Pore Minimizing – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Lumene Body Aktiva Skin Care – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Purpose soap, cleansing wash, moisturizer – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Curel Targeted Therapy Hand or Foot Cream 3.5oz – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Dermarest Psoriasis Gel, Eczema Lotion or Moisturizer – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Two (2) Shower to Shower Body Powder 8oz – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Two (2) Blade Body Spray 4oz – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Purell Hand Sanitizer Original or with Aloe 8oz – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Crest Extra White Toothpaste or Scope White Mouthwash – Limit 2
$10 ECB WYB Crest Daily Multicare Bonus Pack – Limit 2
$3 ECB WYB CVS Toothbrush Sanitizer – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Scope or Crest mouthwash – Limit 2
$2 ECB WYB Colgate Super VP – Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB CVS Tooth Whitening – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Fixodent or Crest Twin Pack Limit 2
$4 ECB WYB Lipreve Cold Sore Relief 8ct – Limit 5
$3 ECB WYBRenu MultiPlus Solution Value Pack 24oz – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB CVS Multipurpose Solution twin Pack 24oz total – Limit 5
$20 ECB WYB Accu-Check Multiclix Lancet Device Kit – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB Diabetic Tussin Mucus Relief Expectorant Caplets 50ct – Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB Diabetic Tussin DM Cough 4oz – Limit 5
$4 ECB WYB Diabetic Tussin DM Cough 8oz or Diabetic*Derm Foot Cream 4oz – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Ecotrin – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Excedrin 50ct – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Fasprin Low Dose 30ct – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB CVS Allergy Relief D Extended Release Tablets 15ct – Limit 5
$3 ECB YWB NeilMed Sinus Rinse Kit or Refills 100ct – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB CVS Tussin CF or DM 12oz – Limit 5
$10 ECB WYB Sambucol Black Elderberry Extract 4oz – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Oscillococcinum Homeopathic Flu Medicine 3/6 doses – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB CVS Airshield Gummy Drops 20ct – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Preparation H – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB CVS Antacid, Heartburn, or Stomach Relief Tablets – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Super Colon Cleanse Laxative Capsules 240ct – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Sootherbs Lozenges Honey lemon or Wild Cherry 30ct – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Boost Smoothies 8oz assorted flavors – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Crampamine Homeopathis Medicine 8ct – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Thera-Gesic Pain Relieving Crème 3oz – Limit 5
$2.50 ECB WYB EAS Myoplex Delux Protein Bars 3.17oz – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB Extreme Energy 6-Hour Shot 2 packs (MAKE SURE 6 HOUR!) – Limit 3
$3 ECB WYB Two (2) Green Tea Dietary Supplements – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB ANY Natrol Supplements – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Just Once Naturals – Limit 5
$10 ECB WYB Advanced Memory Formula Dietary Supplement Softgels 45ct. – Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB Chromax Extra Strength 75ct or Ultra Stregth 60ct – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB CVS Ultra Fabric Softener 40lds – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB CVS Pediatric Electrolyte Oral Solution or Freezer Pops – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB CVS Warming Massage liquid 6.7oz – Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB CVS One-Time-Use 35mm Camera – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Two (2) Aquafina 12 packs – Limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Celestial Seasonings Tea Bags – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB Sandisk Memory Card 2GB or Cruzer Micro Flash Drive 1GB – Limit 5
$2 ECB WYB TDK DVC Camcorder Casette 60min 3pk – Limit 5
$5 ECB WYB Virgin Mobil Marbl Color Flip Phone – Limit 5
$3 ECB WYB Push Up Pro or Dryer Lint Removal Kit – Limit 5
$5 ECB YWB Braun PocketGo Shaver – limit 5
$19.99 ECB WYB Prevision Xtra Advanced Diabetes Management System $19.99 – Limit 1
$3.99 ECB WYB Nutra-Trim Weight Management Chewing Gum 48ct. - $3.99 – Limit 3

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Money lessons from rock star Bret Michaels

I am a teen of the 1980s and of course a fan of Bret Michaels the lead singer of Poison!! When his reality show. Rock of Love came out last year I was instantly addicted.

Bret was in Bankrate's Fame and Fortune column. He shared some of his philosophy on how he deals with the business of money in the music industry.

Get the best deal you can. If you're getting a deal from a promoter and they're trying to underpay you, look at the size of the venue, what they're selling tickets for, the gross income, the net income ... all of that matters. Because you're also taking care of your fans. I'm playing a place that holds 3,000 people. I don't want him selling $70 tickets but offering me $50,000. I'd rather he do a $30 ticket, and then I'll do it for $60,000.


It's simple business common sense. My biggest strength is using common sense financially. I excelled at consumer math in high school, when they sent you out with a fake $50 to go grocery shopping. I was the A-plus student in my class. It helped when we lived in L.A. without two nickels to rub together. They would send me to the store to get the food, and Bobby was a fry cook, so he'd cook the food up. Now we laugh about it, but in the game of rock 'n' roll, it's about survival at the very beginning, literally -- it's about not starving and having to say, "I have to go back to mom and dad in Pittsburgh."

Bret sounds like he knows how to live within his means even though he has millions of dollars to his name. He keeps reinventing himself from rock star to reality star to what can keep his business afloat.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

I am tired of being frugal

Yes I said it!

I am tired of clipping coupons, making meal plans and doing a budget! I feel sort of like my frugal mojo is gone. Frugality is not a necessity for us but more of a choice!!

It doesn't help that my husband is out there interviewing for another job and a few of them would be doubling our income if he got one and took them.

I have been dreaming what we could do with all the extra money each month!! Everything from annual
 Disney World  vacation  to adding a second level on and even paying off our mortgage.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Frugal Five Meet Martia

Martia a homeschooling stay at home mom to two boys (7 & 9) and two girls (2 and 5), living in Northern rural New York.

What is your financial life?

We would like to move out of New York closer to family in the Carolinas. We need to fix our house up to eventually sell, and need to come up with the money for the small house projects that need doing. If I can squeeze $100/month for this it would help. I also want to get more adept at crunching our budget with the way prices are going up. I want to conserve now and get to where it feels normal not to spend before we hit a crisis. We also have some credit card debt to pay down. Despite my best effort, a chunk of it was from Christmas shopping, I am embarassed to say.

What is your budget buster?

I am lazy when it comes to planning. I end up running around to buy things last minutes rather than shop for bargains. Also I am a homeschooling addict.

What is your favorite money saving tip?

Find free things to do at home or in our neighborhood so we don't feel the need to spend money "doing" something. We use our local library-it is a wonderful resource. It has a ton of DVDs-documentaties

If you had an extra $1000 what would you do with it?

Credit card debt!!

What is your best resource for frugal living?

I love reading frugal blogs. I try to pick up a ton of ideas. Also has some good frugal forums.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Frugal Dinner Planning Jan 27th

This is a crazy week!!

Sunday Dinner at Mother in Law's I am bringing a dessert

Monday Layered Ground beef crockpot

Tuesday Pesto chicken with tomatos

Wednesday Cheesey burger and spinach

Thurs Soup and sandwich

Fri Whole wheat pasta and meatballs

Sat My oldest family birthday party!!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

CVS weekly extra care bucks deals 1/27-2/2

Here are the CVS deals for starting tomorrow. I just posted a ton of coupons from $2.00 off 10 to $15 off $75 CVS printable coupons

ECB Specials (All limit 1 unless noted)

$5 ECB WYB $10 of Hellmann's,Lipton tea bags,Skippy or Ragu - Hellmann's 30oz,Lipton Tea Bags 100ct, decaf 48 ct, green 40 ct 2/$5, Skippy or Ragu 26oz 2/$3

$1 ECB WYB Two (2) Twizzlers $1.99
$6 ECB WYB $16 of any Energizer listed $8 hearing aid 16 pack, AA and AAA 12 pack, E2 AA and AAA 4 pack, rechargeable AA and AAA 4 pk or value charger
$3.29 ECB WYB Stayfree clean ultra thin 10 or 12ct $3.29 - limit 1

$5 ECB WYB KY intrigue lubricant 2.75 oz
$10 ECB WYB $20 of these products - Advil pain relief liquid gels, migraine 40 ct, tablets or caplets 50ct, Advil PM caplet 20 ct or liquid gel 16 ct $4 each,
Advil Cold Multi Symptom cold 10 ct or cold & sinus 20 ct $5 each, Robitussin cough gels 20 ct or liquid 8oz, asst types $6 each, and Children's Dimetapp DM cold & cough or cold & allergy 8oz $6 each - limit 1

$5 ECB WYB Benefiber or Exedrin fiber supplement chewables 90-100 ct, caplets 60-72 ct, powder 48 or 62 doses, pain reliever assorted types, 250 ct for $11.99 - limit 5

$3 ECB WYB Tylenol Arthritis or St. Joseph's arthritis caplets 150 ct or enteric aspirin 300ct for $12.99- limit 1

$4 ECB WYB Centrum Cardio 120ct - limit 1
$2 ECB WYB bengay pain relief patches 2-5 ct or cream 4 ct limit 1
$10 ECB WYB Alli starter kit 60 mg 90 ct $59.99 limit 5
$7 ECB WYB Two (2) Garnier Nutritioniste limit 2
$5 ECB WYB $20 of Preventin products limit 1
$3 ECB WYB any Skin Effects product limit 3
$2 ECB WYB Jergens lotion 7.5 - 21 oz assorted types ( excludes natural glow ) limit 1
$10 ECB WYB $20 of Nexxus haircare - shampoo, conditioner or styler psa $3.99 - limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $10 of Fructis hair care shampoo or conditioner 25.4 oz - limit 2
$2 ECB WYB Perfect 10 haircolor $11.99 limit 1
$3 ECB WYB $9 Dark & Lovely limit 5
$2 ECB WYB $10 of Smooth ‘N Shine hair care limit 5
$5 ECB WYB $10 of Soft & Beautiful, Just For Me or Motions limit 5
$2 ECB WYB Colgate Total Whitening or Advanced Clean twin pack limit 5
$1 ECB WYB Arm & Hammer toothpaste $1.99 limit 1
$10 ECB WYB Three (3) Breath RX limit 1
$5 ECB WYB $25 of Huggies products limit 1
$6 ECB WYB Gillette Fusion Phenom razor for $9.99 or Gillette Fusion Phenom manual razor for $8.99 limit 1
$5 ECB WYB Three (3) Boost 6 or 12 packs, limit 1
$10 ECB WYB $20 of participating PepsiCo products, limit 1

All CVS vitamins,minerals or herbals BOGO free
All Revlon Lip,Foundation,Powder,Blush or Concealer BOGO
Hershey's candy BOGO ( kisses,kissables assorted types )
Bounty Basic 8 pack or CVS 12 pack toilet paper $4.99
Purex laundry detergent $2.99 24-32 oz
Hershey;s Pot of Gold $9.95 heart shaped box $8.95 regular box
Veryfine Juice or Fruit 2O

Buy ONE Get ONE 50% off
Household Cleaners – SOS pads, Tilex mold & mildew, Fresh Shower
Life Fitness Reparagen
Natures Bounty Red Yeast Rice, Garlic, Niacin, or Cinnamon
All Ocuvite or PreserVision Vitamin & Mineral Supplements
Reading Glass by Magnivision
ALL Revlon Eye, Nail, or Beauty Tools
ALL Artificial Nails
ALL Palmers Skin Care
Essence of Beauty Comb, Brush, Mirro, or Hair Accessories
VO5 Extreme Styling Hair Care
ALL Marc Anthony Hair Care
Ellin LaVar Hair Care
ALL Schick Disposable Razors

CVS online printable coupons good thru 2/3

Here are some great coupons to use CVS this week!

$3.00 off $15 coupon

$4.00 off $20 coupon

$5.00 off $30 coupon

$10.00 off $50.00 coupon

$15.00 off $50.00 coupon

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Will it burn a hole in your pocket?

There used to be an old saying that "money burns a hole in your pocket."

I think it true! I want to save and I like to save but I know when our income went up so did our lifestyle. (aka lifestyle inflation)

The House passed a new government consumer rebate that will be given in June. The last time in 2001 they did this-MONEY WAS BURNING HOLES IN LOT OF POCKETS. Will it happen again-economy is not as strong as it was in 2001. George Bush is hoping it will happen again-he wants people in the malls buying large screen TV and new cars. I think George will like me here-we are planning a new used car purchase and this will probably go towards that.

So will this money burn a hole in your pocket as well, or will you pay off debt or save?

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

80% behavior 20% knowledge

For a lot of us getting of debt is like going on a diet. You know what to do but don't necessarily do it!! That is where it is 80% behavior 20% knowledge comes into play. If you are looking to get out out debt check out this great video by Dave Ramsey where he talks about how to be financially successful.

Some highlights!!

Stop the bleeding

Only buy what you can afford!!
Use cash only (or use a debit card instead of a credit card)

Get on a Zero based budget
-Give every dollar a name whether it is going towards debt reduction, food or electricity

Dave's Baby steps

1) Save $1,000 baby emergency fund
2) Debt snowball
3) Save 3 to 6 months of expenses
4) Save 15% retirement
5) Save for college
6) Pay off the house
7) Build wealth

Monday, January 21, 2008

Frugal Five Meet Crystal

Crystal is a frugal mom with 3 kids ranging from from Pennslyvania

What is your financial life?

I am stay at home mom who also homeschools my 7 yr daugter and 6 year old twin sons. My husband works full time and makes a decent income, but in taking a new job this past summer he took a pay cut and we are struggling. We have a big mortgage that we took on before his job change, and we also have credit card debt, and some other debts that we are working on paying off. Six more months of disciplined payments and we will be OUT of credit card debt.
And we don't have any savings--at all. We need to start up dh's 401k, now that he qualifies again, and start setting aside a portion of each paycheck into our savings account.

What is your budget buster?

Those credit card payments!!

What is your favorite money saving tip?

Stock up on necessities only when shopping--no spending off the shopping list

If you had an extra $1000 what would you do with it?

Since I do not have a saving account, I am would put it towards that.

What is your best resource for frugal living?

"Not Buying It: My Year Without Shopping" by Judith Levine. I found her book inspirational...she doesn't give practical tips, but rather points out some of the hardships that are involved in deciding what is necessary and what are not.