Grocery Shopping-Spent $83.70 At Randall’s Saved $42.25

I did NOT want to go grocery shopping tonight. I needed to, and I did, but I did it kicking and screaming. My caffeine today consisted of the worst cup of coffee in the world that I had to chase down with an entire can of Sprite. It got me through work, but I crashed the moment I got home.

I went, and I did okay. Not as well as I could have done if I was really into it. $11 of my total cost was apples. Yes that’s right. Honeycrisp apples. My husband came home kind of grumpy because he had a stressful week, so I got him a ton of his favorite apples to cheer him up.

The lunchmeat, water and go-gurt I was able to use a manufacturer coupon along with a store coupon. The chips  were kind of an impulse buy. They were $1.99 a bag and they just kind of walked into my cart all on their own.

Spent: $83.70
Saved: $42.25 or 34%

This is just Randall’s this week. Kroger and HEB were not even worth a trip this week. I hope next week is a bit more exciting!

I linked this post up at Frugality Is Free

Top 5 Sites For Parents & Kids

It should come as no surprise that we are a family that enjoys the computer. So when we are looking for fun things to do with the kids, we power on the laptop and these are the sites we most often frequent:

1. Parents Connect by Nickelodeon- Parents Connect is where I get the info every week for what’s happening here in Houston. That’s not all they have available:

2. Starfall-I found out about this site a couple of years ago and it is SO MUCH FUN! website for the magazine. There is a LOT of free content on here.
  • Printable Flash Cards
  • Pregnancy Calendar
  • Halloween Crafts for Kids
4. PBS Kids– The site belongs to PBS the TV station and has some of our favorite loveable characters!
5. Playhouse Disney-last but absolutely not least…Playhouse Disney
By no means is this an all inclusive list! To be honest, my favorite places to go for crafts are blogs! Specifically homeschooling blogs. One day I’ll compile that list…although I tried once and it was way too long!
What is your favorite kid friendly site? Let me know in the comments!

Money Saving Monday: Just Say No


Money Saving Monday: Just Say No!

Just say no, to expensive social obligations. To friends that beg you to go shopping when you know your bank account is in no shape to do so. To family asking you for money, when you really know that you don’t have it to spare. Just say no.

It sounds simple, but sometimes it can be very difficult emotionally. We are people pleasers by nature. In addition, money (specifically lack of money) is a very taboo subject. Easier to say yes than to have to explain how you really shouldn’t because the dryer just broke, the baby needs diapers and the electric bill was $50 higher than expected.

What if you have the money to spare…but just don’t want to? Just say no. Take control of your bank account. You do not need to attend 5 birthday parties a weekend. You do not need to always be the one shelling out the difference when you go pick up lunch for coworkers.

This doesn’t mean don’t be generous. It doesn’t mean be a hermit and never go out with friends and spend money. It simply means if you want to say no…or you NEED to say no. Just say no. I’m giving you permission. What if someone asks why? First off, they are most likely too nosy for their own good.

I find honesty works though. Why? The kids need clothes more than I need to buy $30 worth of cookie dough from a fundraiser. Why? That money is earmarked for a day of fun with my family and honestly that’s what I WANT to spend it on. Not on baking 20 pies for the PTA bake sale.

You might be called a cheapskate. You might be called stingy. You might even be called poor (some of the richest people in America are also the biggest tight wads…so you are in good company!). It’s worth it to avoid the stress of spending money we don’t have/didn’t want to spend.

When you say no to the things you DON’T want to do. You can say yes more often to the things you do want to do. Add a little extra to the offering plate. Buy something fun and frivolous for yourself or your spouse.  Help out a friend or a family member or a stranger in need.

Just learn to say no. I promise, it’s incredibly empowering!




Load Coupons Onto Your Store Loyalty Card

Before you go grocery shopping this week be sure you have your coupons! In addition to the coupons you can find in the Sunday Paper, and on coupon printing websites…you can also load coupons directly to your store loyalty card using Cellfire!

These coupons come off your card as discounts when your card is swiped. You can actually STACK them with manufacturer coupons. Which means if you have a $.50/1 Twinkie on your card and a $.50/1 Twinkie paper coupon…You get $1 off your Twinkie! If your store doubles coupons, they won’t double the Cellfire coupon. So keep that in mind when you are shopping.

(Twinkie? When is the last time I had a Twinkie?)

Load your card up today! (they will ask for your cell #. I promise it’s perfectly legit. I would not recommend it if it wasn’t!)

For more help setting up your grocery list, check out these awesome (if I do say so myself) links:
How to make a grocery list
How to Shop Smart

  This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you click/purchase/sign up for this offer, I may receive a small amount of compensation for it. A win for you and a win for me! Have a GREAT day!

Great Money Saving Tips!

I first signed up for this a few weeks ago and I love the newsletter! The tips are really fantastic and always give me something to think about for the day. Most newsletters I sign up for, I find I cancel them pretty quickly. This one seems like a real winner. Sign up today!

This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you click/purchase/sign up for this offer, I may receive a small amount of compensation for it. A win for you and a win for me! Have a GREAT day!

A Personal Touch Post: Tone It Up Tuesday…on Wednesday

She is the one eating the cake…I gain the pounds?

I MEANT to post this yesterday. Obviously I didn’t, so here goes today. I am joining in with Shibley Smiles for Tone it up Tuesdays. I have a LOT of weight to lose. Like 10 lbs 10 times.

Stop! Just read the 10 lbs and ignore the rest.

Seriously though, I need to lose some weight. I need to be healthier and I need to be lighter and more fit.

Fad diets don’t work for me (do they work for anyone?), I need a lifestyle change.

I have PCOS which is a fancy way of saying my body loves loves loves/hates carbs.
Low carb diets MELT the fat off of me and make me pyschotic. Yes I’ve tried South Beach. Yes I’ve tried Atkins. Yes I’ve tried Weight Watchers. Lost 40 lbs on Weight Watchers and enjoyed myself while doing it. When I’ve gone back on it since though, I unintentionally manipulate the program too much. Just like every other weight loss effort, it backfires on me.

I need a lifestyle change. A diet and exercise overhaul.

I have close to 200 followers on Family Friendly Frugality (a frugality blog with a “personal” touch…here’s my personal touch! LOL), what better accountability than 200 people watching my progress?

I’m starting small. Itty Bitty. Drastic has been done and died. We’re going for baby steps.
This week:

  1. Each day INTENTIONALLY eat a bit less each meal
  2. Each day INTENTIONALLY move more each day
That’s it. Probably sounds silly and easy to most people. It’s not for me. I’m changing my whole life though, so bear with me!
And after I lose my first 10? Make me lose 9 more. 

Want to go on a Disney Cruise?

Sign up for a FREE Disney Line Vacation Planning DVD by clicking the link above. We are so hoping to take a Disney Cruise when the kids are a bit older. How much fun!

  This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you click/purchase/sign up for this offer, I may receive a small amount of compensation for it. A win for you and a win for me!

Did you know you can buy coupons?

Well you can! Okay first let’s be clear. You are not paying for the coupon itself. You are paying for the time taken to obtain, clip and mail the coupon. They are called coupon clipping services and they are all over the web.
Now why in the world would you want to BUY a coupon? Sounds a bit counterproductive, right? Well, no…not always.
Say a newspaper costs $2 (it does here), and there is a HOT coupon in there for diapers. That one coupon when combined with a great sale at Walgreens/Rite Aid/CVS/Walmart/etc will make that pack of diapers $.10 per diaper. An AWESOME deal! Not so awesome though if you spent $20 to buy 10 papers. What you can do, is visit a coupon clipping service like Coupons and Things by Dede and order only the diaper coupon. Pay for 10 coupons at just a small percentage of the face value rather than buying 10 papers filled with coupons you have no need for

I’ve bought coupons online a few times so far. In fact, I still have a generous stockpile of baby wipes from the 20 coupons I bought back in early July.
Check it out, see if there are any coupons you might be interested in. Some people don’t buy papers at all and just buy only the coupons they want each week from a clipping service. Personally, I always get nervous a coupon I think isn’t that great will be hot in a few weeks when a great sale comes up. Hot coupons go FAST on clipping services.
Check out Dede’s site to learn more:

We Use Coupons also has a directory of coupon clipping services. Click on the box below and go to Coupon Resources on the top navigation bar:

10 Super Easy NO CLIP ways to save at the Grocery Store

So you want to save money at the grocery store?
You don’t have time or maybe you don’t care to clip or print coupons. You can still save money! Your savings might not be enormous, but every little bit helps.

10 ways to save money at the grocery store without clipping coupons:

  1. Shop the sales. When you walk in the store, grab the sale ad…the items on the front page are typically the best deals. The biggest picture of meat is generally considered their “loss leader” and it’s a great time to stock up.
  2. Look for managers specials throughout the store. These often have red stickers. They are on manager special because they are close to their expiration date typically. Meat that is close to expiring can be 50%-70% off…take it home and freeze it and you only benefit!
  3. Instore promotions. Many stores have instore promotions such as buy 5 participating items get $5 instantly off of your bill. It is SO HARD for me not to say that you can get really extreme savings using coupons with these promotions but…oops I already said it. Even without coupons, store promotions can really reduce your grocery bill
  4. When something is a good price…stock up. Don’t just buy one, buy enough to last your family until it goes on sale again. Sale cycles vary but if you buy about 6-8 weeks worth of an item…you should be safe not to have to buy it again until it is on sale
  5. Buy in bulk. Not in a stockpiling sense, but rather than buying the smallest bag of rice…buy the largest. Now if we were talking coupons, I would actually be encouraging the opposite. With coupons, bulk isn’t always better if you can get the item for free or almost free if you buy a smaller amount. Without coupons though, buying in bulk is generally the cheapest way to go.
  6. Store brand. Every grocery store has a store brand line of products. Some have several versions of their store brand. HEB store brand food is amazing. Normally name brand doesn’t taste that much different than store brand. Even if it does..that doesn’t mean better. You just might have to give the store brand a try for awhile to change your taste buds.
  7. Don’t impulse buy. Walk in with a list and stick to it. If you don’t actually see the store ad until you walk in the door (which I don’t recommend, most stores mail their ads out the day the sale starts..or you can obtain it online), and you see a sale on a protein not on your list, decide if you can sub in the sale protein instead. Same with produce and dairy.
  8. Try not to buy convenience foods. You can make so many convenience foods at home and make them much healthier (see: freezer burritos). Convenience foods and junk foods can rack up a bill VERY quickly. That doesn’t mean you can’t have snacks or sweets, just make them yourself from scratch.
  9. Store cards. Not every grocery store has loyalty cards, but many do. In some stores you can’t take advantage of most of their sales unless you have a loyalty card. (we’re not talking about coupons right now, but you can even load coupons on to these cards). Some cards even rack up points for free food or gas.
  10. Shop with cash. Erin Chase at $5 Dinners recently wrote a good post about how shopping with cash keeps her grocery bill in check. I can’t claim to do this as often as I should, but it is a good tip to put into practice.

***Optional*** (but a bit more work)

  • shop at more than one store…this is called “cherry picking” where you only pick the best deals from each store
  • make use of instore by the registers, hanging on the products, shelves, etc

So there it is…my no clipping advice for grocery shopping. When you are a thoughtful shopper and you take just a bit of time to check out sales and stock up on items when they are a good price…you can expect to save between 10-25% on your grocery bill…if not more!

Happy Shopping!

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