Monday, June 25, 2012

Frugal Meal planning June 25th

We are to the full swing of summer school vacation!  We had a great anniversary dinner on Saturday night-plan for and had a gift certificate to cut down the cost

Sunday  Pizza

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Monday  Turkey breast, mashed potato and green beans

Tuesday  Chili over baked  potato

Wednesday  chicken and broccoli

Thursday Sausage and peppers over brown rice 

We are heading out of town for a few days to celebrate the 4th of July early at my frugal parent's  cottage at the beach.   We will primarily be "eating in"   I will making some pasta salad as well as a Mexican  lasagna ,   some frozen meatballs for subs, bring some potatoes for the grill, maybe a frozen pizza to grill. There will burgers, steak and hot dog.  I  I try to bring the food so we don't need to head to the local convenience  store and spend alot of extra cash there.

Are you looking for even more menu ideas check out  Monday meal plans at organizing junky

Friday, June 22, 2012

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Monday, June 18, 2012

Frugal meal planning week of June 17th

School is now out for summer!  I try to make the summer a bit loser but  don't really have the extra money to be going  out to eat so we try to bring snacks and drinks on the road so we don't spend extra money. 

Pasta with Broccoli, Chicken and Cheese Sunday  Splurged on some really nice burgers for father's day.   Perfect for a long day after camping Saturday night 

Monday Homemade pizza  

Tuesday Chicken and broccoli 

Wednesday  chili  

Thursday  Going for a family cookout to celebrate Father's day since we couldn't get together with our dads 

Friday   Pork chops, and broccoli stuffed potatoes 

Saturday we are doing a special family day since next week is our wedding anniversary.  We will end up going out to eat.  I need to see if there are any coupons out there  

Are you looking for even more menu ideas check out  Monday meal plans at organizing junky

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Trying to have a cheap and fun summer

I'm entering my 10th  summer as a stay at home mom   The  3 boys  ended school on Friday and I'm determined to keep this summer fairly frugal and cheap.  

One thing I have already done to ensure I save money is to use our  ice cooler. .  One of the biggest  money  wasters for me is grabbing food and drinks out because I am not properly prepared.   Not only for my wallet, but for my waistline as well.  If I get to the point of extreme hunger (which is common when I'm ill-prepared) - I don't go for healthy options out and about.  I go for  Burger King, Mcdonalds or Dunkin donuts   .  I got a number of coolers in the house  - I just have to remember to stock it with drinks and snacks before we go out every day or night. 

I do try to hit all the free movies that are offered during the summer at the local movie theater or at the park. There is also a great number of free concerts.  We will pack a picnic dinner or maybe do an early one and hit them.  

Another way for me to stay frugal is I made a "Summer Essential" box and it's in the trunk of my car.  I just took a shoe box sized plastic container and put sunscreen, bug spray, bandaids and some other first-aid stuff in there.  And it's staying there.  I will admit that I have fallen victim to the "We're going out to do something fun today!" and have been caught without sunscreen so I just go and buy a bottle With a bottle or two always in the car, I don't' have to worry about dropping $6-$10 on a bottle when I already have it.    

We have an above ground pool so there are always extra kids visiting from the neighborhood . I don’t want to be scrooge but  I am not feeding every single kid.  I do have some extra snacks but I don’t go out of my way and they can drink water from the tap.   The pools does keep the kids busy and it is much cheaper than heading out to the water park.   

The boys do have a few weeks of camp and that can be pricey so I need to budget our other activities plus we do have a week at the lake house with extended family this year.  

Monday, June 11, 2012

Frugal Meal planning week of June 10th

School is out this week!  that means time in the pool, hanging out.  The boys do have some summer camps, volunteering as well as summer school.  Keeping them  busy keeps me sane  I try to do alot of free stuff with them but now that they are older doing a picnic in the playground doesn't keep them entertained for very long.  So if we do stuff, it is bit more costly but I am try to pack a picnic lunch  and water so we don't waste money on food.

Here is the menu plan

Sunday Steak, eggs, green beans,

Monday Easy cabbage rolls    (click for recipe)   I threw this in the crockpot last time and will probably do it again for 6 hours on low Browned the meat before I threw it in . I stretched out some of the meat by increasing  the brown  rice and  the cabbage.  My oldest has been requesting this weekly.

Tuesday Mexican Lasagna   (click for recipe) Yes two weeks in row but my really picky eater loved it last week and asked when we were having it again. I am doing it meatless this week.  Plus I feel I am overflowing with tortillas

Wednesday Leftover easy cabbage rolls-  may wrap them in tortillas this week

Thursday Salisbury steak, green beans and potatoes

Friday  Pizza to celebrate the last day of school

Saturday Cub scout camp out

Are you looking for even more menu ideas check out  Monday meal plans at organizing junky

Friday, June 08, 2012

Free Diabetes cookbook with low carb recipes

I am trying to lower the carbs for my family since my husband has high blood sugar.   We are trying for recipes below 10 grams of carbs most days of the week.  

here is a a great Free Diabetes cookbook

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Alamo Rental Car Deals

We are planning on going on road trip this summer and really do not want to put the milage our 2005 mini -van.  I would rather put the miles on rental car.  

Summer vacations are just around the corner, and Alamo rental car  is offering exclusive deals when you sign up to be an Alamo Insider! Join free today and from now on the best deals come to you. Plus, you can bank on special privileges like a 10% or more member discount on every rental, and self-service kiosks that get you on the road to vacation faster than ever. Whether your next escape is one week or months away, Alamo’s got exclusive deals for you.

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Grocery store coupons for the month of June 2012

Food & Beverage coupons for June 

Household stuff coupons 

Health and Beauty coupons

General Mills 
Health & Wellness 
Pet Lovers -
Babies & Kids - 

Monday, June 04, 2012

Frugal Meal planning week of June 3rd

Spring  Soccer season is now over  and cub scouts is only a few family camping  events during the summer months. However life doesn't get any less hectic for us. We had graduation parties this weekend for some family friends and my mom's  birthday celebration.  School is out in 2 weeks.

Sunday  Steak and eggs , roasted potato, green beans 

Monday   Mexican Lasagna click for recipe love this easy recipe. I got some good deals on some Chi Chi tortillas that were  $2 for $3.00 plus I had a coupon for them as well.

Tuesday  Chicken and spinach, rice

Wednesday Meatloaf   (from the freezer-always try to make 2-3 meatloafs at a time ) , green beans, mashed potatoes

Thursday  Chicken sausage and baked spinach casserole.

Friday  Leftover meatloaf with spaghetti sauce over pasta

Saturday  homemade pizza

Are you looking for even more menu ideas 
check out  Monday meal plans at organizing junky

10 tips to save money at the movie theater

The street did a recent article on how to go the movies cheaper and beat the movie crowds.  There is pretty good advice on how to save money   
1.       Go bargain hunting 
If your parents didn't teach you to shop sales or buy by unit price, now is the time to learn. 

The National Association of Theater Owners pegged the average price of a movie ticket at $7.93 last year. A $34.99 four-pack of tickets from Costco may not help folks on the low end of that average, but in cities where movie prices range from $11 to $13 a ticket, those $8.75 tickets to Regal  , Cinemark  andAMC Theatres are basically all-day matinees.BJ's Wholesale Club offers the same four-pack deal, but only for AMC theaters.

This is great advice.   My husband office has discount tickets for sale as a perk of working there.  TheEntertainment book also has coupons as well.
2.      Go early 

AMC theaters have an early bird special of their own for the first show of the day before 11 a.m. Shows start as early as 10 a.m., and seeing a summer blockbuster by noon has far greater rewards than just saving the rest of your day: Those early tickets are only $6 a pop, which is about half price in some markets.

We usually take the kids to the early matinees for the discounts.  

3.      Go off-peak 
Ever go to a movie on a Monday? It's what moviegoing must be like for apocalypse survivors. 

No lines, no waiting and nobody sitting within 10 seats of you. It's a big reason independent theaters hold special events early in the week, but it's also a great way to shake off a particularly miserable Monday at the workplace. If that doesn't fit your schedule, Tuesdays work just as well. Regal theaters not only know this, but will offer you $2 popcorn and drinks to sweeten the deal. 

There are a number of local movie theaters here in Boston on Tuesdays or Wednesday offers tickets for  $5.00 all day long. Great way to see movies cheaper!

4.      Go mobile 
With all the online ticket buying options available, only service charges should compel frugal buyers into waiting on line at the box office. 

Comcast  -owned Fandango's free mobile app chips away even at that argument. If you're cool with service charges, the Fandango app not only lets you buy tickets, but serves as a mobile ticket in some markets. If you're averse to paying more for already costly tickets, the app lets you know if there's a cheaper matinee available and, if so, how many tickets for it have already been sold. It's a good way to avoid crowds and costs without expending much energy.

5. Go all-in 
Rewards programs help make the expensive and unpleasant task of flying a bit bearable. Why shouldn't it do the same for summer movie screenings? 

If you're going to spend a premium to see first-run films anyway, you may as well make it pay. AMC and Regal have rewards programs that offer customers perks for the purchases. Regal's Crown Club gives away free popcorn for every $50 customers spend, but holds out until they spend $300 to give them a free ticket. AMC's Stubs program is a bit more generous, parting with $10 for every $100 spent and sparing customers online convenience fees. The catch? Stubs users pay $12 upfront.

Pretty good deal since popcorn and drinks can be so expensive but these perks are only good if you go a lot.

6.      Go social 
Theater chains aren't opposed to giving away release information and popcorn on their Twitter and Facebook accounts. They're just trying to build a following like everybody else, and all those likes can add up. 

Carmike  and Regal cinemas have each given their social networking customers free concessions in the past, while 7-Eleven partnered with Foursquare on a movie ticket giveaway last summer. Meanwhile, if you're not totally over flash sales, Groupon still offers the occasional $4 movie ticket deal, while Living Social has offered pairs of tickets for $9.

I have gotten the Groupon deal several times for AMC which is pretty cool.  Keep and eye out for those movies. Like your local movie theater they will often send out deals.  I also picked up this deal from Saveology which can give 1/2 price tickets   $12.50 for a Regal Entertainment Group Gift Card ($25 Value) - 

7.       Go on the open road 
Moviegoers who haven't needed a TripTik since the dawn of GPS have another reason to join AAA. 

Auto club members can get tickets to Regal Cinemas for $8 a pop at their regional offices. Yes, that's higher than the national average, but if you're living in New York and paying about $5 above the national average for tickets, that's about a $5 discount, isn't it. It's not a great reason to sign up for AAA on its own, but when your car battery dies on street sweeping day, those AAA services can come in handy.

When I worked in downtown Boston, we had a AAA in our office building and I would often run down there on Friday for tickets. I also bought tickets for gifts for my nieces and nephews.

8.      Go plastic 
Movie tickets are one of those relatively inexpensive throw-ins credit card companies just love. 

Visa  Signature, for example, offers customers two-for-one tickets through Fandango for Friday showings. American Express , meanwhile, will simply hold free showings for its customers and offer pairs of passes to cardholders who pay attention to their rewards updates. This year alone, Amex has given cardholders freebie showings of The Lorax and American Reunion.
Good deal we haven’t personally come across this since we don’t run a balance on our credit card but good to check it out

9.      Go with a gift card 
Is it still a "gift" if you're giving the card to yourself? 

Let's argue that it is. That being the case, discount gift card sites such as  GiftCardGranny and PlasticJungle often offer gift cards from theater chains for as much as a third less than their face value. GiftCardGranny, for example, has offered a $100 AMC gift card for $77 (23% off) and a $25 card for $15 (40% off).

Good deal if you can find it.  I haven’t found really great discounts.

10. Go to a drive-in 
They're a lot tougher to find these days, but moviegoers near one can get their personal space and low prices they can't find at their local theater. 

We usually go the drive in movie once a year while we are on vacation.  We  pack snacks and popcorn and for $20 our whole family of 5 can see  2 movies. It is a lot of fun