Friday, July 31, 2009

Half Price Day at Middle Tennessee Goodwills

Tomorrow, August 1 is half price day at all Middle Tennessee Goodwills. If you go, be prepared for crowds and to stand in line at the register. But, often it's worth the wait. You never know what you might find!


Thursday, July 30, 2009

75% Clearance on Toys at Target

Target is clearancing alot of their toys in preparation for Christmas. Most clearance is 75% off. Great time to start Christmas shopping or stock up for birthday and other gifts.
I went today and got 5 items and only spent $24 dollars (and then applied a $5.00 gift card).
If you're not able to get to the store, you might try as they may have some good clearance deals.
Shop soon! Things are going fast!
Thanks Ronica for the heads up!


Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Raise Your Hand for Savings Coupon Book

Be on the lookout for the newest unilever coupon book at Publix. It's called Raise your hand for Savings. It has some of the same coupons from the "Family is it's Own Reward" coupon book (btw, that book expired today). Here are the coupons inside:
-$.55/1 any Ragu Pasta Sauce
-$.55/1 any Skippy Peanut Butter
-$1/1 any Bertolli Frozen Dinner
-$1/2 any Bertolli Pasta Sauce
-$1/1 any Hellman’s Mayonnaise
-$1/1 any Lipton Tea
-$1/1 any Breyer’s Ice Cream
-$1/1 any Popsicle product
-$1/1 any Degree Deodorant
-$1/1 Dove Beauty Bar or Body Wash (6 pack, 19.4 oz. or larger)
-$1/2 any Suave Products

All coupons expire 9/9/09

I found mine at the Concord Rd Publix. Happy hunting!

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Monday, July 27, 2009

My latest Thrift Store Find

How much would you pay for a Vera Bradley bag? $25 dollars, $50 dollars, Who is Vera Bradley and why are her bags so expensive??? Well, that last comment would have been my answer a few weeks ago.

I was recently browsing a local thrift store on my lunch break and a bag behind the glass counter caught my eye. I asked the clerk to look at it closer and she handed it to me. It was a large bag with 6 pockets on the inside and one on the outside, it was brown and peach with a floral motiff. And, it was 100% vegan (in other words, no part of it is made out of leather or other animal derived materials).It was perfect for me! Except for one thing...... It was $29 dollars! $29 dollars for a bag? At a thrift store no less? You must be kidding? I questioned the clerk on the price. She said it was priced that high because it was a Vera Bradley bag. Ugh! Labels...... I hate when they get in the way of a really good deal. So, I gave it back to the clerk. Nope, I was not going to pay extra because Vera Bradley made it. Even if it was the only bag/purse I had found in almost a year that I loved. It didn't matter that I could fit everything, including my 3 coupon wallets, in it. It didn't matter that it was the first product I had found in a long time that said "Made in the USA". Nope I wan't going to buy it.
So, I left, empty handed. I thought about it the rest of the day, that night, and the next morning. Then, I had a thought "My birthday is coming up..." and "I really wanted Wicked tickets but decided not to spend that much money when we are working so hard to become debt free and build our savings back up". " I could just spend $29 dollars for a birthday treat". So, I am now the proud owner of a Vera Bradley Bag. I did go to her website and discovered that bags that size were retailing for $70+. I guess I did get a deal in that sense. And, I'll be carrying that bag for a long, long time.

You never know what you might run across in a thrift store!

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Sunday, July 26, 2009

Weekly $5.00 Dinner Menu

I try to keep my dinners at $5.00 or less. I can do this buy purchasing food on sale and with coupons. I calculate the prices of the main ingredients but not the smaller ingredients such as spices. I usually round up to try to figure in those costs.

Sunday -- Broiled Catfish, rice pilaf, green beans $4.00

Monday -- Bakeless Ziti $3.00

Tuesday -- Cheesy California Veggie Casserole w/ Rice $3.00

Wednesday -- Pizza $2.50

Friday -- Skillet Nachos $3.50

Saturday -- Spaghetti w/ marinara sauce , Garlic bread $3.00

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CVS Deals - Enough printer paper for 2 years!

My run to CVS this week was short and sweet. I just had too much stuff going on to really scope out all the deals and put together a transaction plan. The one thing I did really want was the Copy & Print paper. After some discussion and thought, we figured that we really don't use that much printer paper, maybe 2 reams a year so this CVS deal was a very good one for us. We should be stocked for a long time! We also needed some medicinal mouthwash, very expensive mouthwash may I add. So, here's what I did:

Transaction 1
4 packs of Copy/Print Paper $5.00 each
Total: $20.00
- $4 off $20 coupon (CVS email)
- $$6.00 ECB
-$4.00 ECB
-$3.98 ECB

Total OOP w/ Tax $3.50
Received $10.00 ECB

Transaction 2:
1 bottle of Colgate Peroxyl Mouthwash $11.99
- 10.00 ECB

Total OOP w/ Tax: 3.10 (the tax will kill you!)

I really like to roll my ECB's but sometimes they come in really handy when you have to buy something unusual (like $12 mouthwash) to help off set the price.


Saturday, July 25, 2009

Our Visit to The Discovery Center in Murfreesboro

We took E to the Discovery Center in Murfreesboro today. It's a great children's museum with lots of exhibits that introduce children to many different types of scientific theories (physics, chemistry, ecology).

Of course, most of the scientific aspect was lost on my 4 year old. But she had a great time running from place to place and touching everything! There is a great outdoor area with a trail through a marsh. You can see up close many creatures whose natural habitat is the wetlands (ducks, crane-like birds, beavers). Our favorite was the tadpole pond (not the official name, but it's what we started calling it). It has big stepping stones that you can walk through the pond and see tadpoles that will turn into frogs. We didn't see any frogs in the pond today, so none of the children believed the parents as we were all trying to explain that the tadpoles would grow legs and turn into frogs. E just enjoyed being able to step through the pond on the big square blocks (see picture below).

It was a great day, we all had fun and it was very reasonable price. I would highly recommend the Discovery Center for anyone that's in or near Murfreesboro.
Here are the details:
502 SE Broad St.
Murfreesboro TN 37130
Mon - Saturday: 10a - 5p
Sunday: 1p - 5p
Admission: $5.00 Adults & Children (under 2 is free)

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Friday, July 24, 2009

Closeout Deals At Kroger

Many folks may be skipping Kroger this week because they're running the same sale as last week. But I found many good deals on closeout this week. Of the many items I noticed:

Ziplock Vacuum freezer bags
Reynolds hand held vacuum sealer
OCello Sponges
Dial Soap 3-pack
Some Pantene items (hair spray, mousse)
Candy (bags and individual candy bars)
A few items in the organic and health food department
Many items in the Cleaners/Detergent aisle (toilet bowl cleaner kits, etc)

So, you may want to swing by your Kroger (don't forget your coupons!) and see what you can get for cheap or even free!

Grocery Finals

I finished my grocery shopping a little early this week. I usually do my Publix shopping on Sunday mornings because it's quiet at the store and I also get the penny item. But I had very little to get this week at Publix and I had an opportunity to shop alone on Friday night. There were actually many good deals at Kroger this week and I had to use a lot of discipline to keep from totally going crazy with my budget.

Here's the breakdown:

Still doing the Mega Deal promotion to get $5.00 off order when 10 participating items are purchased.

2 boxes of Hartz Dog biscuits .49 each after Mega Deal and $2.00 coupon

3 2-Liter Coke .79 each after Mega Deal

2 Zataran's Red Beans & Rice .99 each after Mega Deal

1 Lender's Bagels .99 after Mega Deal

2 Tombstone Pizzas 2.49 each after Mega Deal

4 Santa Cruz Organic Lemonade .50 after sale and $.75 coupon

1 1/2 Gallon Skim Milk .50 each after Manager Special

1 Seasoned Catfish 1.82 after Manager Special

1 pack of Burrito Tortillas 1.50 regular price

1.2 lbs of grapes 1.21 sale

1 GE CFL Lightbulb .82 after Closeout and $1.00 coupon (IP - no longer available)

4 boxes of Ziplock vacuum seal bags 1.69 Closeout

1 Reynolds vacuum sealer 4.99 Closeout

Total w/ Tax: 35.14


1 box Pillsbury Cake Mix .15 each B1G1F + .35 q doubled

2 Near East Rice Pilaf 1.09 each

1.6lbs Tomatoes 2.38 Sale

Romaine Lettuce 1.69

1.75 lbs bananas .86

1 bg Baby Carrots 1.29
- 2.00 FLIP
Total for all produce $4.22

Total w/ Tax: 7.25


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Thursday, July 23, 2009

I have a button!

To celebrate my 100th post. I've had a button made. You can have a button too for only $5.00 and help a well deserving family bring their baby Lily home.
Now through the end of the week, Sunday July 26, Jen will make a button for your blog and ALL the proceeds will go to help with Lily's adoption.
Go here for all the details on the button. Go here to read the story of Lily Soo.
If anyone would like my button on their blog, they can grab it from the side bar. Thanks!

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Cinderella at Nashville Public Library

At long last, Wishing Chair Productions presents Cinderella! The brand new telling, filled with original music and magical surprises, features some of Tom Tichenor’s most beautiful puppets.
Presented in the Children’s Theater. Approximately 35 minutes long

Now through September 19

Friday, Saturday, Sunday

Times: 9:30a, 10:30 & 11:30am
Note: It's been my experience that with popular shows such as this, you should plan to get there 5 - 10 minutes early as the theatre is a first come first seat. The 9:30 show is the least crowded.

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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Bring Baby Lily Home!

Congratulations to my fellow adoptive mom and blogger, Adrienne. After so much heartache and disappointments with failed domestic adoptions and miscarriages. It looks like they have found their second baby. Baby Lily is in South Korea. She is 8 months old. Adrienne and Jim hope to bring her home before her first birthday.

Go Here for their story and on ways you can get some really neat stuff while helping them with their fundraising.

There is also a special button on the side of my blog (under special blogs) that links to a blog set up just for updates on their journey to Baby Lily and all the different giveaways available to you as part of their fundraising efforts.


Sunday, July 19, 2009

5.00 Dinner Menu

Sunday -- Birthday Party at friends

Monday -- Veggie Burgers, baked potatoes $3.00

Tues -- Teriyaki Veggies & Rice

Wed -- Pasta Salad w/ Eggplant, Zucchini and Squash $1.00 (almost all veggies were free to me)

Thursday -- BBQ Salmon w/ couscous 4.50

Friday -- Homemade Pizza $4.00 (will add veggies and brush crust with garlic butter)

Saturday -- Dinner out

Saturday --

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Beauty School Drop In

I have been in need of hair cut and highlights for a while. But, of course, I was looking for a good deal. Over the past year I have tried some of the local "low end" salons around town and I was not impressed. I kept hearing about Paul Mitchel the School that is located in Antioch near Hickory Hollow. I was hesitant to go to a "Beauty School". I figured if the low end salons were disappointing to me, how would a school be any better.
I finally decided to take a chance. I called and made an appointment for Saturday. It was an interesting "salon" experience. I got there a few minutes early, so the students were still setting up. There was lots of hustle and bustle going on as there were many clients waiting for their name to be called. They also had the music cranked up. It was very high energy, dance music, which made it feel like a party was going on. It was also the biggest salon I had ever seen. I think there were at least 50 workstations. Of course, it's a classroom too.
I was called back within 10 minutes. My student stylist was a young lady named Jenna. She was very nice and she is set to graduate in September. She asked me to complete a short survey of my needs/wants. It asked things like is my hair more oily or dry? How often do I get my hair cut? What am I looking for in a hairstyle (more body, shine, etc). We talked about how I wanted my hair cut and what kind of highlights I was looking for. She consulted with another student who was more senior to her and then her instructor came over and discussed it with her and "signed off" on the type of coloring she was going to use. It took her a little longer to do the coloring because she obviously wanted to make sure it was right. And I had to chuckle to myself because she was obviously trying to hone her conversation skills with me as she asked me things like "what do you do for fun?" and "what do you do for a living?", "do you have any children?" It was like she was going down a list on a cheat sheet that was stuck to the back of a the chair.
Part of their services is to give a 5 minute scalp massage during the shampooing. It was great! She had that part down pat. She did the first part of my hair cut and then was notified that her next client had arrived. She asked another student to start that client, but eventually turned me over to yet, another student to blow dry my hair and finish it off. This was really the only kind of bad part. It was difficult for the second student to try to pick up and finish the haircut that someone else had started. I had to really review the cut closely to make sure the sides were even (which they were not) and point out small stray hairs that a more experienced stylist would have caught. But, it's a school, not a professional salon.
All in all, it was a good experience. Although everyone says I look like Kate Gosselin now (but I can't really blame the stylists for that -- I asked for a short haircut with blond highlights).
My haircut was $13.00
Highlights $35.00
Tip $5.00
I can see myself going back. It's hard to beat that price for a cut and highlights. Here's a few things to consider if you go:
1. Plan on spending alot of time there - I was there for 3 1/2 hours. These are students, so they deliberately go slower and they are stopped often to be reviewed by an instructor.
2. Be as specific about the style and color as you can. Bringing a picture is a very good idea.
3. Review the hair cut or other services you received thoroughly before getting out of the chair. I could tell my stylist really wanted to do her best, but is still learning alot about refinement and small details needed to be pointed out to her.
4. If you don't like loud pop/dance music or an eclectic group of people working on you, this is NOT the place for you.
5. Make an appointment. Although they take walk-ins, I noticed that those folks had to sit and wait a LONG time.
Paul Mitchell the School has schools all over the country and they use only Paul Mitchell products. They also have a skin center where they train anesthicians. The Nashville school is located at:
5510 Crossings Circle
Antioch TN 37013
Hours: Mon - Thurs 9am - 10pm
Fri - Sat 9:00 - 4:30p
To find out more about the Nashville School and all their services go here.


Nice Week at CVS! Lots of Free School Supplies

Another great week for school supplies. I got:
1 pack of Duracell Batteries
2 packs of notebook filler paper
2 packs of Papermate pens
2 packs of #2 pencils 24 ct.
2 vinyl 3 ring notebooks
2 memo notebooks
1 pack panty liners
Total: $21.82

- $4.00 off $20 purchase coupon
- .75 coupon for batteries
- 10.00 ECBS

Received: 19.83 ECBs


Weekly Grocery Wrap up

This week I went to 4 stores, Kroger, Publix, Apple Market, and Dollar General (for dog food only).

I stayed pretty close to budget, which is good, because it was a rough week around our household with me working 5 days and we had multiple trips to the doctor. Which caused me to go off plan and we at out more than planned.

Kroger had a great Mega Sale event running this past week and it continues through this week. The deal is you buy 10 of the participating items and get an automatice $5 off your total purchase. Combine this deal with coupons and it makes for some really cheap and/or free stuff! Here is what I got

2 boxes of Rolaids FREE after q and Mega Deal
2 Kraft 8 oz Shredded cheese .49 each after q and Mega Deal
2 Scotch Bright Nail Saver Sponges .66 each after q and Mega Deal
10 bottles of Coke/Dr. Pepper .79 each after Mega Deal
2 Smart Balance Butter Spreads .98 each after Q and Mega deal
2 boxes Popcicles .99 each afte Q and Mega deal
1 Qt Skim Milk 1.49 no q no mega deal
1 head Romaine Lettuce 1.79 no qu no mega deal

TOTAL w TAX: $20.19

Was an interesting shop this week, there was a great money maker with Band-aids. It really helped to shave off some $$ on a high priced item I needed. My total before coupons was $37.00. The cashier was really impressed that I got it down to $12.52

6 Boxes of Band-Aids FREE + Big Overage by stacking manf q's with Publix Q from Green Advantage buyer
2 cans Muir Glen Tomato Sauce FREE + Overage with Q
Bananas FREE with Food Lion Q $2 off $5 produce
2 packs of Bic Mechanical Pencils FREE with Q
Publix frosted flakes .01 (penny item)
1 bag Water Maid Rice .19
Egg Plant .41 using part of Food Lion's $2 off $5 produce Q
8th Cont Soy Milk 1.59 with Q
Tomatoes 2.86
Gatorade 7.99 no Q no sale

2 loaves of Pepperidge Farm Whole Wheat Bread .50 each
1 Pepperidge Farms Hoagie rolls .50
1 Pepperidge Farms Whole Wheat Hamburger buns .50

Dollar General: (sorry no pic)
1 bag Pedigree Dog Food $8.50 after q

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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

It's Consignment time again!

I can't believe that the fall consignment sales are starting already! It's going to be hard looking for long sleeve shirts and snow boots while it's 90 degrees outside. But, that's what smart, frugal moms do.

There are a couple of kid's fall consignment sales coming up within the next couple of weeks:

15115 Old Hickory Blvd (Near Intersection of Old Hickory and Nolensville Rd behind BP station)Nashville TN
Thursday, July 23 - Saturday, July 25
10 am - 6 pm

Half Price Day: Sunday, July 26
12pm -4pm

Note: I've not personally been to this consignment sale, but I had a friend who was a consigner in the spring sale and said it was a very good one -- and she made a lot of money.
I'll check it out this time.

Nashville Fairgrounds
Thursday, July 30 - Friday, July 31
9am - 8pm

Half Price Day: Saturday, August 1, 8a- 4p
Note: I've not been to this one either. I imagine that given the location, it is a big one. If anyone has been to it in the past, or goes to this one, let me know!


Sunday, July 12, 2009

$5 Dollar Dinner Menu

It's going to be a busy week at our house. Not alot of time for cooking. I think the crock pot will be used heavily.

When figuring the cost of my meals, I figure in the prices of the main ingredients that I paid, using sales and coupons. If you make these recipes from ingredients purchased at regular price, the cost can be significantly higher. I don't calculate out smaller ingredients such as spices. I usually round up my numbers to try to include the nominal costs of these small ingredients.

Sunday --- Birthday Party at friend's house
Tuesday -- Quick Bean Quesadilla $3.00
Wednesday -- Tomato Basil Salad w/ cut up veggies $3.00
Thursday -- Paula Deens Squash Casserole $3.00 ( I can make this cheaper than last time b/c my squash and zucchini were free!)
Friday -- Lentil Rice Casserole served in tortillas - $4.00
Saturday --- Mama's tired! Let's go out!

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CVS - Best week Ever!

Sorry for the bad pic, the lighting was just not good.

Rarely do ALL my planned shopping scenarios work out. But, this week they did!
I basically copied the scenarios that Jenny laid out at Southern Savers

Transaction 1
3 Papermate Grip Pens .99ea
2 CVS Notebooks .99ea
- $4.47 ECB
- .35 left on Prescription Gift card
Total OOP .17
Received 4.95 ECB
Second Transaction:
1 CVS Scissors 2.99
2 CVS school glue .99ea
- 4.95 ECB
Total OOP .02
Received $4.97 ECB
3rd Transaction:
2 Pocket folders .05 ea
1 CVS Scissors 2.99
2 Rulers .99
- 4.97 ECB
Total OOP .10
Received 4.97 ECB
4th Transaction
2 Pocket folders .05 ea
1 Gillette Fusion Razor 7.99
1 Tylenol Back Pain 3.99
- $1.00 Tylenol Q
- $4.00 Gillette Fusion Q
- $4.97 ECB
- $2.76 Prescription Gift card
Total OOP $ 0
Received $7.00 ECB
5th Transaction:
2 Pocket folders .05 ea
2 Olay Bodywash 7.49 ea
1 Olay Regenerish Facial Cleanser 5.99
-(2) 2.00 Olay bodywash Q
-(1) 1.00 Olay cleanser Q
-7.00 ECB
- 7.24 Prescription Gift Card
Total OOP 3.12
Received $10 ECB
So, at the end of this VERY long trip to CVS (and even longer to post this), I was out of pocket $3.41 and have $10 in ECBs for another trip! Not bad......

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A little frugal beauty for mom!

I've been trying all year to replenish my cosmetics collection and other beauty supplies (the good stuff) for free or very very cheap. It ain't easy. But slowly, I've been able to build a new collection by watching for items on clearance or sale and combine with coupons. This week at Walgreens, I was able to get a few high dollar items for cheap (unfortunately, not free- but sometimes you take what you can get)

Here is what I did:

Loreal Revitalift Cleanser (regular $6.99) Sale: 6.00
Loreal Revitalift Eye cream (reg: $14.99) Sale: 14.00
Sunday Tennessean (wanted extra coupons and served as filler item)
-$1.00 Q for Loreal Cleanser
-$1.00 Q for Loreal Moisturizer
-$5.00 RR
TOTAL W/ TAX: 15.84
Received $10 RR for next Loreal purchase

2nd Transaction:
1 Loreal True Match liquid foundation $10.49
1 Loreal Bare Natural Powder $14.99
Minus Walgreen sale B1G1 Free - $10.49
Minus Register Reward - $10.00
TOTAL W/ TAX: $6.38

There were many cosmetic items that I could have purchased for free using the above scenario, but I really needed foundation makeup. I figured that paying $6 dollars for foundation makeup that would normally total over $25 is not a bad deal. And I got some nice eye cream and cleanser at still less than what I would have paid for just the foundation makeup.

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Grocery Finals for the week

I tried something new this week. I tried using the cash only, envelope system for groceries. I've been reading how others do it, so I thought I'd give it a try, and hoped it would help me stay within my budget. I guess it did, because I came in at $36.24.

This would not have happened if there hadn't been a scanning mistake at Kroger (they rang up the wrong item and charged me more than what I was supposed to be charged) so, I ended up with free squash and zucchini after pointing out the mistake to customer service. FYI: Kroger's policy on items scanned wrong is: the first item of the same product is free, the second item is 50% off.

You'll also see that I bought fish (salmon). I've decided to start throwing in a little fish to our normally vegetarian diet. I think we may be missing some very important nutrients (like fish oil) from our diets. And while we chose to live a more vegetarian life style for animal welfare reasons, my family's health comes first. So, you may see a little meat from time to time (probably fish).

Bananas .72
Pineapple .99
2 Cucumbers .49 ea
3 Tomatoes 1.89
2 bags Trail Mix 1.99 ea
TOTAL w Tax : 9.22
Kroger after coupons:
2 1/2 lbs Summer Squash FREE
1 1/2 lbs Zucchini FREE
4 cans Kroger Corn .59 ea
2 packs of Kraft Cheese .97 each
2 dozen Cage Free Eggs 1.49 each (Manager Special)
3lb Organic Potatoes 1.69
Romaine Lettuce 1.79
5lbs Peaches 4.01
2 Salmon fillet 4.43
TOTAL W/ TAX: $20.76

Publix: (It was a light week for me, I could have stocked up more, but thought it was more important to stay within budget this week)
After coupons:
1 Publix Ranch Dressing .01 (penny item)
3 Muellers Spaghetti .42 ea
2 Klondike Bar Packs .55 ea
Rosetto Ravioli 1.35 ea
TOTAL W/ TAX: $5.81

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Newest frugal investment UPDATED!

In our never ending quest to become more enviromentally friendly, hubs and I have been discussing getting a rain barrel to collect water for the garden and lawn. We went ahead and made the leap (i.e. investment) today. This is a long term investment for sure. As it was $50 and we certainly will not save $50 in our water bill right away. But I calculate that it should pay for itself within a year.

A rain barrel collects rain water from the down spout of the roof gutter. It has a tight mesh screen at the opening to prevent most dirt and gravel from passing into the barrel. This mesh also prevents insects from invading the water. There is an overflow spout at the top (the blue thing coming out of the top of the barrel). And it has a spout at the bottom of the barrel so that a regular garden hose can attach to it. From there you water your garden or lawn as normal.

Rain barrels can be purchased at many hardware stores as well as through Metro Public Works at the Omahundro Recycling and Composting Convenience Center. They are $50 at Metro Public Works.

It took us about 20 minutes to put the rain barrel together and in place once we got it home.

I'll let you know how it goes!
UPDATE: Since this post, we've acquired 2 more rain barrels. We're working on making all 3 rain barrels work together right now. And just this week, hubs purchased a pump online to help with the water pressure. It's still a work in progress, but we're determined to make this work as a reliable water source. Our water rates have went up twice in one year!!

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Saturday, July 11, 2009

My Favorite Deals this week

It's been a busy week, and I've not been able to post anything. But, I have tried to at least check everyone elses blogs a few times this week. I'm glad I did, here are my favorite deals that I was able to get because of others.

$50 dollars worth of Gas for $40 bucks!

Thanks to Nashville Cheapster for reminding me of the $10 off a $50 Gas gift card coupon that is in the Publix sales circular this week. I snagged 2 before they were gone at my store. The cashier told me that I was smart to come in early for the purchase because they would not be giving rain checks for this item. Fortunately (or maybe, unfortunately) I did not encounter the same issues that Nashville Cheapster did when purchasing the cards. Read her story here

50% off already Clearanced Toys at Kmart
We have 3 birthday parties within 2 weeks. Whew! Not only am I running all over middle Tennessee, but I'm would be forking out alot of $$ for kids' birthday presents. But, with the clearanced toys at Kmart, I was able to get 3 nice gifts and only spent $20. Thank you Becky at Frugal in Franklin

Free School Supplies at CVS
I'm very excited about all the Free after ECB deals at CVS this week. I'll let you know how I do later. Thanks to Jenny at Southern Savers for all the great deal scenarios.


Sunday, July 5, 2009

50% Off Coupon at Micheal's Crafts

Go here for your printable 50% off one regular priced item coupon. It's good through Saturday, July 11.

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Grocery Finals for this week

This week I went to 5 stores (I know, too much!) But, I threw in a trip to Walgreen's because I had $8 in register rewards that were about to expire -- I couldn't let that happen. So, I got the deal where if you bought $20 of selected Nabisco products, you got $5 register rewards back. It was not a great deal, but it seemed the best option to get the most products and would allow me to roll register rewards. And, since I was in the neighborhood, I went to Harris Teeter. I'm not a fan of HT because I think their coupon policy is too restrictive and too complicated. Everytime I've tried to take advantage of their double or triple q days, I always lose out. But, they had a really good price on watermelon and peaches (no coupons required) so I stopped in.

5 Boxes of Ritz Crackers $2.00 ea
2 packs of Chips a Hoy $2.00 ea
2 boxes of Capri Sun $2.00 ea
TOTAL $20.00
minuse register reward - $8.00
Total OOP w/ tax: $13.55

Received $5.00 RR

2 bags baby carrots .99 ea
2 cucumbers .49 ea
2 pints strawberries .99 ea
TOTAL OOP w/ Tax $5.32

Harris Teeter
1 Watermelon $2.88
2 lbs of Peaches $1.62
TOTAL OOP w/ Tax $4.85

I took adavantage of the Mix n Match sale -- $3.00 off when you buy 10 participating items. The prices listed are the price after the $3 off and applied coupons:

Breyer's Ice Cream .49
Country Crock spread .94
Klondike bars .74
2 Kroger cheeses .99
5 Purex detergent 1.49 ea (I have enough laundry detergent stockpiled for a year now!)
4 Santa Cruz Organic Lemonade .50 ea (not part of deal)
1 Romaine Lettuce 1.68 (not part of deal)
TOTAL OOP w/ Tax $18.57

4 Reach floss FREE + Overage
1 Publix Tortilla Chips .01 (penny item)
10 corn on cob .20 ea
4 Kraft mac n cheese .25 ea
2 Philadelphia Cream Cheese .25 ea
2 Purina Cat chow .49 ea
1 Soy Milk .50
2 Publix Soda .50 ea
4 can Bush's Baked Beans $1.00 ea

TOTAL OOP w/ Tax 11.38


Saturday, July 4, 2009

Pet Portraits from Grannis Photography

Grannis Photography is doing pet portraits to benefit the Nashville Human Association.
I have had all my dogs photographed by Leila at Grannis. They are great. I've always had my portraits done at a benefit because I can get very high quality photographs at a more reasonable price, and the proceeds always go to a favorite animal charity (Leila also does these benefits for Music City Pug Rescue).
Grannis Photography is a high end photography studio. She charges hundreds (and I do mean, Hundreds!) of dollars for a full studio or on-site session. I could never afford pictures from Grannis any other way than these benefits that she does a couple of times a year.
I've also had my daughter photographed at these benefits. But, I've always had my dogs with me, so I wouldn't recommend just showing up with all humans. You could get turned away.
Packages start at $35 and go up (you can spend a $100+ if you want to)
Grannis Photography
2817 Columbine Place - BERRY HILL
Sunday, July 19
10am - 3pm

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Friday, July 3, 2009

Falling off the wagon

You'll notice that I've not posted in a few days. Well, this week has been rough. The job has been exhausting and home has been neglected. I've not done well on the frugal front either. First thing, I didn't plan a menu for the week, just couldn't get to it last weekend. Therefore, I've been "winging it" all week. After you go a while with planned menus you realize just how easy they make your daily life. As a result of no menu, and exhaustion from work, I did something I've not done in a LONG time, I ordered take out pizza, and paid FULL price! Oh! the humanity! As I walked out of the pizza shop with my $14.99 pizza, I thought to myself, I could have fed my family for 3 days for what I just spent. Then, today while on errands, E and I stopped and Chic-Fil-a and had lunch, I even ordered the over-priced kid's meal so that she could get the toy, and we had ice cream. I think I spent another $15 on lunch, just for the two of us. Of course, most of this went uneaten, because I've discovered that I don't find fast food that appealing anymore.

To top things off, I did most of my weekly grocery shopping today and I'm pretty sure I will go over my budget, unless I can figure out how to squeeze everything I want at Publix this week into $8.00.

I vow to take this weekend and get back on track!