Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Five Ways to Not Save Money

While I've covered several ways to save money, one thing I haven't discussed is a few simple things that are often overlooked. What follows is a sort of money saving guide in reverse.

1. Using a coupon because you have it
This is a trap that a lot of new couponers, including myself, have fallen into. Sure, that soup is on sale. And yes, you have a great coupon that means the store is practically giving the cans away. But even if the cost of the soup is only $.25 per can, if you aren't going to use it, that's $.25 wasted.

On the flip side of this is: not using a coupon because it's small. You may have a coupon for $.35 off a product. Pennies, right? But if you're going to buy that product anyway, why not save the $.35? If this is a product you buy regularly, say every two weeks, that coupon will save you $9.10 over a year. Once you begin to use more and more of those $.35 coupons, in addition to higher value ones, your savings will grow.

2. Being brand loyal
There are three products that I am completely brand loyal to: Diet Pepsi, Kraft Macaroni and Cheese, and Tampax Pearl Tampons. I'm sure there are a few other things that I buy only one certain brand of, but those are the three that come to mind first. If you have a long list of brands that you're fiercely loyal to, you're probably missing out on savings. If you're hesitant about trying a new brand, do some research. Ask trusted friends and family (or my readers!) if they've ever tried it. Once you have a few recommendations, wait for a good deal and buy the product. Letting go of brand loyalties means you have a wider range of products to choose from when using coupons.

3. Not knowing your bottom line
It's vital that you be aware of how much things cost. Take Safeway, for example. If I didn't know what a really good deal on a product was, I would often be sucked in by those big yellow price tags indicating a sale. I just ran to the store tonight to buy a few things. Sara Lee bagels had a yellow tag on the shelf, advertising them as $2.49/bag. I was not fooled. I know that my bottom line for bagels is $2, meaning, unless it is an emergency, I don't buy bagels unless they cost less than $2. Don't be fooled by the sale flyer, either. It amazes me how, just by seeing a product in the sale flyer, people assume it must be a good deal. There might be a big picture of avocados on the front, advertising them as four for $5. But if you only buy avocados when they're at their cheapest, you know that you can get them for $.50 each. Knowing your bottom line allows you to feel confident, knowing you aren't overpaying.

4. Not using Facebook
It took me a while to come around to the idea of "liking" companies on Facebook. I didn't want their status updates to clutter my news feed and, to be honest, I didn't want everyone on my friends list to see that I was liking 436 different companies and profiles each day. Now I'm over it. Yes, I have to scroll through some extra posts everyday, but the extra .7 seconds it takes is worth it to me. And if "liking" Tide on Facebook let me enter a giveaway that gave me enough free stain remover to last for 22 loads of laundry, I don't really care what other people think.

5. Need Based Shopping
This is a topic best elaborated on in another post, so I'll be brief. Most of us shop based on need. You buy peanut butter when you're almost out, regardless of whether it's $1/jar or $3.50/jar. To truly save money, we have to change the way we think about buying groceries. If your bottom line for peanut butter is $1, then you buy peanut butter when it's $1, even though you might have two jars in the cabinet at home, because you don't know when peanut butter will go on sale again. You don't want to run out and be forced to purchase it at it's regular price. Like I said before, this involves doing a complete 180 in how we approach shopping for groceries, and I'll go into it more in-depth in a later post.

For Ashley: My dog, which is big and black and happy, loves to go for walks. This is the best I can do.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Target Highlights

Let me begin with a confession: I love Target. If the Albany Target had a full food section, and I lived closer, and I wasn't as concerned about saving money, I would probably live at Target.

If you aren't familiar with Target's coupon policy and how it works, I'll tell you briefly. Target has dozens of coupons online. You can print these coupons and pair them with manufacturer coupons. Match both of those with a sale, and you'll find prices that compete with any drugstore or chain department store.

Like all coupon printing sites, though, Target only allows a maximum number of each coupon to print. So each month, when the online coupons reset, I browse the list and print any coupons for products I might want. That way, if the end of the month rolls around and I find a great manufacturer coupon, I don't have to look online for the Target coupon for the same product, only to find that it's no longer available. This strategy usually results in me ending up with more printed coupons than I'll use, but for me it's worth it to score some great deals. 

To read and print Target's full coupon policy, go here. I won't bore you with the complete details of my Target trip, but here are a few of the highlights:
-Aveeno Active Natural's lotion, $2.99 each. Used $3/2 manufacturer coupon, stacked with 2 $1/1 Target coupons, making these $.49 each.

-Lipton tea bags, $1.09 each. Used $1/2 coupon I received after contacting Unilever, stacked with $1/2 Target coupon, making these $.09 each.

-Taster's Choice single serve packets, $1.04. Used $1/1 manufacturer coupon that came with my free sample, making them $.04.

Target often offers coupons for items that you wouldn't traditionally find coupons for. For example, today I bought sunglasses using a $2 off coupon. They sometimes have a coupon for Circo brand children's socks, and if you buy the least expensive pair, they're often free. If you don't live close to Target, consider matching up manufacturer coupons with Target coupons for several weeks in a row, then making one big trip when you'll be purchasing enough items to make it worth your while.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Walmart Trip

Mostly, I despise Walmart as much as the next person. I hate how there are fifty-seven checkout lanes, but only three cashiers. I hate how a lot of their aisles are organized counter-intuitively- why is the body lotion by the makeup and not by the body wash? I hate how, around here anyway, their prices are so low that I often can't justify shopping elsewhere.

During my Friday morning shopping trip, though, I was definitely not hating Walmart. Keep reading to see how I got all of the stuff in the picture for $10.06.
-Nalley dill hamburger chips, $1.86. I used $1.25/1 coupon, making them $.61.
-Baby toy, $3.
-2 bottles of Purex with Zout laundry detergent, $5.77 each. I had two coupons that I won in online giveaways, so these were both free.
-Country Crock spread, $2.62. I used $1/1 coupon, making it $1.62.
-Travel size Advil, $1.84. I used $1/1 coupon, making it $.84.
-2 boxes of Nexcare bandages, $1 each. I used 2 $1/1 coupons, making them free.
-1 degree deodorant, $1.88. I used $.75/1 coupon, making it $1.13.
-2 Wet Ones travel packs, $.97 each. I used $1/2 coupon, making them $.47 each.
-Cottonelle flushable wipes, $2.48. I used a coupon that I got online, making them free.
-Suave deodorant, $.97. I used a $.75/1 coupon, making it $.22.
-Frank's Hot Sauce, $.98. I used a $1/1 coupon, making it free.
-Suave volumizing mousse, $2.74. I used a coupon that I got online, making it free.
-Noxzema razors, $4.97. I used a coupon that I got when I contacted the company about a broken razor in a box I bought awhile ago, making them free.
-Huggies flushable wipes, $1.72. I used $1/1 coupon, making them $.72.

For those of you keeping track, I had $21.73 worth of coupons for free items: The Purex detergent, Suave mousse, Cottonelle wipes, and Noxzema razors.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Friendly Reminders

Tonight I just thought I'd throw out a couple random thoughts.

1. Remember, there will be no coupon inserts tomorrow, because of the Memorial Day holiday. The Sunday papers usually do not include inserts when a major holiday falls on Saturday, Sunday, or Monday. I don't know why. Be sure to check your coupon match-ups anyway, because you should still be able to snag some good deals using coupons you already have.

2. It's never a bad idea to print the coupon policies for stores you visit frequently. If a cashier gives you a hard time about something you know you should be allowed to do, you can politely refer to the policy. This is something I actually haven't done yet, but I keep meaning to do. If you've already done this, keep in mind that Rite Aid changed their coupon policy this past week, so you might want to print the latest version.

3. If you read this blog regularly, be sure to become a follower! I'll be doing a giveaway when I hit 20 followers (only 4 more to go)! The giveaway will be for La Bella Rosa. Be sure to check out all of the super cute stuff she has to offer!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Safeway Trip

I'm so excited to share tonight's Safeway trip with y'all! This store frustrates me to no end; their prices are mostly outrageous, their "sales" are often unimpressive, and they seem to rearrange the store on a monthly basis. Last night I went to Safeway with a list of 4 or 5 things that I wanted to purchase before the sales started over today. I left the store with two containers of Lysol wipes... and nothing else. I just wasn't happy with their selection of sale items.

Tonight, I spent a good amount of time preparing a list and gathering coupons. When shopping at Safeway, I use the coupon match-ups found here. In the interest of full disclosure, I'll tell you that I did two separate transactions tonight. The first included all of the items I'm about to tell you about. The second included all of the things that I paid too much money for: produce, chicken breast, 72 ounces of cream cheese for the three cheesecakes I have to make on Friday. Those were the products that, were this weekend not shaping up to be cuh-razy, I'd buy at Walmart.

With those disclaimers in mind, here is what I got tonight...
-Set of five Gladware containers with interlocking lids, $1.99 after in-ad coupon.
-Four packages of Safeway brand hamburger buns and one package of Safeway brand hot dog buns, $.79 each after in-ad coupon. Most of these will go in the freezer.
-Two bags of Tostitos tortilla chips, $1.67 each (Wednesday only special).
-Four containers of Gerber baby food, $.75 each after $1/4 coupon printed from a previous transaction.
-Foster Farms ground turkey, $3.99.
-Banana Boat sunscreen spray, $3.49 after $1/1 manufacturer's coupon, doubled to $1.50.
-Wishbone Italian salad dressing, $.69 after in-ad coupon and $.50/1 manufacturer's coupon.
-Four packages of Oscar Mayer hot dogs, $.24 each after in-ad coupon and two $1/2 manufacturer's coupons, doubled to $1.50 each.
-Four Totino's pizzas, $.75 each after $.50/4 manufacturer's coupon, doubled to $1.
I paid: $24.41

Last chance for $20!

If you signed up for the $20 Rue La La credit (it's no longer available) today is the last chance to use it before it expires!

They have some inexpensive products today, like Crocs footwear and Vera Wang goblets, each for $19.90. All you have to pay is shipping. Check out the site as soon as you can, before all of the cheap stuff sells out!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

How You Can Help

The recent tornadoes in Alabama and Missouri are heartbreaking. My first reaction to the news of the most recent storm on Sunday night was to say a prayer of thanks that everyone I love is safe. My second was to wonder how I could help.

Like many people, we don't have the money to write a large check. Actually, we don't really even have the money to write a medium check. What we do have, though, is a stockpile. Tonight I went through the stockpile and pulled out lots of items that could be useful to the people of Joplin.
Many of these items were free samples or things I purchased for free or for very little money. The retail value of everything is more than I could afford to donate. But since I'm using things from my stockpile, I'll only have to pay to ship the box. Once I got to thinking about it, I decided that, in some ways, donating nonperishables might be better than giving cash, anyway. If you'd just lost everything you own in a tornado, would you rather someone gave you $5 and said "go find a store and buy some soap so you can bathe," or would you rather they said "here's some soap, go bathe". That's what I thought.

Once I began packing a box, though, I realized that it wasn't all going to fit. I also kept thinking of more things around the house that I'd like to send: wipes, baby clothes, disposable nursing pads, ziploc bags, granola bars. So now I think I want to send two boxes. Which leads me to the reason for this post...

If any of my Sweet Home area readers are interested in donating items to those affected by Sunday's tornado in Joplin, MO, please let me know. I'll put together as many boxes as needed. Money Saving Mom had a great post today about what to send and where to send it to. Please check it out, because I guarantee you have at least a few things at home that you could include. If you're not from the Sweet Home area, but still want to help, please do! The post includes all the information you'll need.

I'll be at work tomorrow and Thursday, at Wells Fargo in Sweet Home, from 10:00 to 3:00. You can drop any donations off there. If you can't make it during that time, but still want to give, leave a comment and we can work something out. Also, please consider giving a couple dollars to help cover the cost of shipping. I'm going to use those flat rate post office boxes, but they're about $7 or $8 each. Keep in mind that many people lost everything. Even the most basic items, things that you could easily spare, are needed. 

I'll take a picture of all the items I collect and blog about it later this week, so everyone can see. Thanks in advance for your generosity!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Where I Get My Coupons

1. The Sunday Paper
I choose to subscribe to the Sunday paper. I paid $22.75 for 13 weeks of delivery ($1.75/week, Sundays only). I think it's cheaper to purchase the paper each week, but if you're like me and have a baby at home and a spouse who works Sundays, you might be willing to pay an extra quarter or two each week for the convenience of having the paper delivered to your front door. Maybe you have a baby at home and a spouse who doesn't work Sundays, and you'd love an excuse to run to Starbucks every Sunday morning.

Keep in mind that a subscription to the Sunday newspaper is not always necessary. Chances are you have family/friends/neighbors who subscribe but don't use their coupons. Hit them up! I'm sure they'd be willing to save their inserts for you, especially if you hook them up with some free toothpaste every now and then. Even if you decide to subscribe to the paper, you should still ask around for unused inserts. If a product you use often is on sale for an irresistible deal, you'll want to be able to stock up.

2. Facebook
If you follow a few blogs, like...you guessed it, Money Saving Mom, you'll stay informed about coupon offers via Facebook. For most of these offers, all you have to do is "like" the company on Facebook, and you will be able to print a coupon. The same goes for free samples. Often you simply "like" the company or product, enter your mailing information, and then you get a free sample. Many free samples also come with coupons.

3. Ask For Them
If you're a frequent blog reader (which, hello, you should be) then you've seen my previous posts about getting coupons by contacting companies about their products. A couple weeks ago I contacted Lipton Tea, via their website, to tell them how much I enjoy their product and to say that I would gladly accept any coupons they might have to offer. Today I received a packet in the mail from Unilever, Lipton's parent company. It includes more than $10 in coupons for brands like Dove, Ragu, Axe, Lipton, Breyers, and more. All for simply letting them know what a great job they're doing!

4. Coupon Websites
There are several great websites for printing coupons. A couple are: Coupon Network, Red Plum, and Target. Most of these sites reset their coupons at the start of each month, so be sure to visit soon. Then check them out again the first of next month, before the best coupons reach their printing limits. Also, please note that most sites allow you to print each coupon two times from one computer. That means, for every computer you have in your home, you can print a coupon twice.

5. At The Store
You know those blinking coupon dispensers that, when you were a kid, you thought were placed in the grocery store aisles as your own personal scavenger hunt? Well, it turns out those coupons can actually be used for products you purchase. Just keep your eyes open for them when your cruising the store. If you see one for something you might buy, grab a couple to save for later and pair with a great sale.

These are the ways I get most of my coupons, but there are LOTS more. If you've found coupons in an interesting or unusual way, let us know!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Walgreens Trip

Here's my Walgreens trip today:
First transaction:
-Scunci hair bands, $2, received $2 RR.
-Airwick Freshmatic Starter Kit, free after rain check and $4 coupon.
-Thermacare 2 pack, $5.99, and Advil 50 count, $4.99. I used a coupon for $4 off the purchase of Thermacare AND Advil together and coupon for $1 Advil, making these $5.98 total. I received a $5 RR.
-Pantene Shampoo and Conditioner, $7. Used $3/2 coupon, so they were $2 each. Received $1 RR.
Total for transaction: $11.98

Second transaction:
-Walgreens aluminum foil, $.69 after in-ad coupon.
-Yardley London soap, $.39 after in-ad coupon and $.30/1 coupon.
-2 Vaseline men's lotion and 2 Caress body wash, 4/$12. I received a $4 RR for these, which would have made them $2 each, but I forgot to purchase them in the first transaction, so I'll have to use it next time.
-Listerine mouthwash, $1.99 after in-ad coupon and $1/1 coupon.
-2 Carefree pantiliners, $.49 after in-ad coupon, $1/1 coupon, and $.50/1 coupon.
I also used the $8 RR from the previous transaction.
Total for transaction: $7.56

I paid: 19.54

I'm not thrilled with this total, because I should have paid better attention and used the $4 RR while I was there. Also, I normally wouldn't pay $2 each for the body lotion and body wash, but I haven't found a good deal on either lately, and the husband is running low. Today's lesson: when you find body wash or body lotion for less than $2, snatch it up!

Thursday, May 19, 2011


Mega Foods has limes on sale this week 12 for $1. I'd love to try out a few fun new recipes. What are your favorites?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Discounted Organic Milk

I would love to buy organic milk, but I just can't justify paying twice as much per gallon. I've seen blog posts from people who check their local grocery store often (these are people shopping at places with a natural/organic selection slightly better than the one at Sweet Home's Safeway) and end up getting great deals on about-to-expire organic milk.

Well, on Tuesday I was one of those people! I bought a half gallon of Safeway brand organic milk for $1.40, or 50% off it's original price. Since I pay $2.50 for a gallon of regular milk, the organic was only $.30 more. That's a price difference I can handle. The milk was half price because it had a sell-by date of May 20 (I made the purchase on May17). Milk is good for about a week past that printed date, and since we use about a gallon per week around here, I know we'll use this half gallon well before it goes bad.

If you come across a milk sale that's too good to pass up, but you don't think your family can drink it before it expires, you can always freeze it. Just check out Still Tasty to learn the guidelines. I wouldn't advise drinking the milk after it's been frozen, just for taste reasons, but it's great for baking. Money Saving Mom has a waffle recipe that's a great way to use frozen milk.

If I can find deals this great on a regular basis, we just might become an organic milk only family!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Drugstore Game

If you want to learn about making the most of your drugstore shopping trips, I would start by going here to learn about Walgreens, and here to learn about Rite Aid. Also, check out this video posted on Money Saving Mom today about how to get going with your drugstore shopping. Those sites should explain how to get started with with drugstore shopping. I'll add my own two cents below.

Walgreens and Rite Aid have similar programs. At Walgreens they're called Register Rewards (RRs) and at Rite Aid they're referred to as UP Rewards (UPRs). The concept is the same at both stores. A RR or UPR is a coupon that prints after your purchase for a certain dollar amount off your next purchase. Occasionally the coupon will be good only on the purchase of a specific item, but in most cases it can be used on any transaction. For simplicity, in the following scenario I'll use the term RRs, but I'll actually be referring to both RRs and UPRs. 

Let's say Gillette Deodorant is on sale this week at Walgreens for $2.99. You have a coupon for $1 off. Walgreens is offering a $1 RR if you purchase that deodorant. Let's say you also need to buy laundry detergent this week. Walgreens isn't offering any RRs for it, but they do have a coupon in their weekly ad that will allow you to purchase it for $2.99. You can handle this trip one of two ways:

1. You get the deodorant and the detergent and take them both to the checkout. You use your $1 off coupon for the deodorant, plus your coupon for the detergent, making your total $4.98. You pay for the items and a $1 RR prints with your receipt. This is a coupon for $1 your next purchase at Walgreens. While this coupon is great, and very useful, there are a few catches. First, it will expire in a few weeks, so you'll have to remember to come back before them. Second, you'll have to keep track of the coupon until you have a chance to get back to the store.

Or, you could do it this way:

2. You get the deodorant and the detergent and take them both to the checkout. You use your $1 off coupon and purchase just the deodorant, still paying $1.99. Like before, the $1 RR prints along with your receipt. Now you do a second transaction, and you purchase the detergent using the in-ad coupon and the $1 RR. This time, the detergent costs $1.99. You've purchased the same items, but this time you've only paid $3.98.

Remember that, while the scenario I just suggested was referring to Walgreens, it is applicable to Rite Aid, too. Here's the thing about RRs and UPRs- yes, they are savings, but they're only good if you actually use them to save. A $1 coupon won't do you any good if it sits at the bottom of your purse until it expires. So when people refer to "the drugstore game," they're referring to the strategy involved with structuring your transactions to insure that you maximize your savings.

Ideally, you would separate your purchases into enough transactions that you don't leave the store with any RRs or UPRs. If you read my previous post about my Rite Aid trip, you know that I haven't quite mastered this yet. Sometimes I look at my shopping cart before heading to the checkout and think it looks like a high school math problem: these are the products Abby is purchasing today. How many transactions should Abby do, and what items should she include in each in order to spend the least amount of money?

I hope this helps clear up any questions about my last post. If not, let me know! I'd love to answer any questions!

Rite Aid

I took the boys to Rite Aid today so I could show Jonathan what this couponing thing is all about. I'm glad it ended up being an exceptionally good trip. I think he was impressed! This is how it went:
- 2 Purex laundry detergent, on sale $.197. I used 2 $1/1 coupons and paid $.97 each.
-Colgate toothbrush, $2.99. I used $1/1 coupon, making it $1.99.
-2 Crest ProHealth toothpaste, $2.99 each. I used a $1/2 coupon, making them $2.49 each.
-Sure deodorant, $1.49. I used a $1/1 coupon, so it was $.49.
-2 Stride gum, $1.29 each (these were supposed to be on sale for $1 each, but I didn't catch it until I got home and looked at my receipt). I used 1 $1/2 coupon, so they were $.79 each.
The total after coupons was $10.98.
I had a $4 UPR from a previous visit, plus a $2 UPR from the purchase of the toothbrush.
I paid: $4.98.
I also have 2 more $2 UPRs from the toothpaste. If I had been paying better attention, I would have made sure the gum rang up as $1 each and split the items into more transactions (I only did two) so that I could utilize all of the UPRs. If I had done that, my total for everything would have been $.40. Jonathan REALLY would have been impressed by that!

***If some of the things I mentioned above (multiple transactions, UPRs) didn't make sense to you, head over here to learn about maximizing your savings at Rite Aid. And be sure to let me know if you have any questions!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

It's Easy Being Green

To be honest, most of the things I do to be more "green" are more for my own convenience and cost savings than to actually help the environment. Don't get me wrong, though, that's definitely an added bonus. Here are some of the ways I manage to save money and the environment at the same time:

1. Reusable Grocery Bags
I originally purchased reusable grocery totes when we lived in a second story apartment in downtown Jackson, MS. Each tote holds much more than a single plastic grocery bag does, so I could carry in one trip what might have taken two or three trips otherwise. I paid no more than $1 for each of my bags, but many were free. Now most of the places I shop at give $.05 back for each reusable bag you use in a trip. It doesn't take many shopping trips before the bags pay for themselves. Add to that the fact that plastic bags aren't biodegradable, and the decision to purchase reusable bags practically makes itself.

2. Nursing Pads
I must confess that it didn't occur to me until a few weeks ago to use something other than disposable nursing pads. I blame that one on the narcotic-induced fog I was in following my c-section. I recently purchased some adorable reusable nursing pads on Etsy as a gift for a friend. They were so cute that I decided to keep them for myself (don't worry, I bought another set for her). Let's do a little math: I paid $20 (including shipping) for five pairs of nursing pads. I pay $10 for a box with 30 pairs of disposable pads. Even if you used just one set a day, it would only take two months for the reusable pads to become the more cost-effective choice. Not to mention they're adorable and way more comfortable.

Sidenote: if you're going to purchase reusable pads, I advise finding them on Esty rather somewhere like Target. You can get about twice as many for your money while also supporting someone's small business.

3. Recycle
Around here, our main incentive for recycling is the fact that it allows us to pay for a smaller size garbage can. But let's face it: you don't have to be a tree hugger or green fanatic to realize that Earth didn't come with an endless supply of natural resources. By recycling, we can preserve the resources that we have left, instead of mindlessly depleting them and hoping there will be something left for our children.

4. Shop Local
I love buying fresh produce at the Farmer's Market. They're cropping (ha!) up everywhere now- if Sweet Home has one, then you know just about every other town does, too. I like shopping the local Market because I want to support local entrepreneurs. The decision is much greener than buying from a large supermarket because significantly less fuel is used to transport the goods to market. Also, the food is grown without the use of pesticides that are used on most conventionally-grown produce.

I'd love to hear some of the easy things you're doing to be more green!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Easy Money-Saving Ideas

Hey, friends! Tonight I want to share some easy savings with y'all. Here are some super simple ways to save a few dollars:

1. "Like" Safeway on Facebook. Once you do this, you can print a coupon for $1 off the purchase of $5 in produce. They're quickly running out, though, so hurry!

2. Visit All You to see a new free sample every day. You can even sign up for email notifications so you don't miss out on anything good. If you use coupons at all, I would advise that you strongly consider subscribing to this magazine. It has over $75 worth of coupons each month.

3. "Like" Swiffer on Facebook. They will be giving away 100,000 Swiffer dusters throughout the month of May.

4. If you signed up for the $20 credit at Rue La La, be sure to check out the site tonight. They're having final sales on tons of great items, many of which are priced below $20.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Walgreens Trip

I had a fairly successful trip to Walgreens last night. Here's what I got:

-2 bags of BBQ Lay's Potato Chips, on sale for $1.99. I used a $2/2 coupon, making them $.99 each.
-1 Pantene conditioner and 1 Pantene shampoo, on sale 2 for $7. I used a $3/2 coupon, making them $2 each.
-1 Carefree pantiliners, on sale for $1. I used a $1/1 coupon, making them free.
-3 Pampers Swaddlers, $27. I used 1 $2/1 coupon and 2 $1.50/1 coupon, making them $22 (this may not seem very inexpensive, but I also got $8 in Register Rewards).
-Lysol toilet bowl cleaner, on sale at $2.99 and BOGO free. I used a $1/2 coupon, making them $.99 each.
-Nexcare Band-Aids, $2.99 (these have a mail-in rebate, so they will eventually be free).
-Kleenex, $.89 after Walgreens coupon.
-3 Laffy Taffy, $.25 each (I just purchased these so that some of my coupons would go through; you can't use more coupons than you have items).
My total with coupons was: $.34.60.
Then I used $10 in Register Rewards.
I paid: $24.60
I also got a $5 Register Reward good on the purchase of Pampers, so I should be able to get a package for very cheap next time!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day, everyone! Quick- if you got a $20 credit from Rue La La, hurry over to the site right now. They have some awesome sales that can get you designer products for free or nearly free!

Then check back here tomorrow to see my sweet Walgreens shopping trip!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Do It

Just a friendly reminder: if you read my blog, don't forget to become a follower via Google Friend Connect. You don't have to have a gmail account to do it. I'd love to reach that 20 mark by the end of this month- we're over halfway there! Once we hit 20 followers, I'll be doing a giveaway to La Bella Rosa. I promise you aren't going to want to miss it!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Another Way To Get Free Stuff

The other day I opened my mailbox to find this:
It was all free!

I earned it just by entering the codes found in the packages of Pampers diapers and wipes that I buy on a regular basis. It's easy to go to Pampers' website and sign up for a free account. You can earn points by entering the codes on the Pampers products you buy, and if you follow a site like Money Saving Mom, you can check out this post and get several additional codes. It doesn't take long at all for those points to add up. You can redeem the points, for things like these razors, entries into contests, toys and games for baby, and more.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


Okay, readers, I have a question for you: how do you get your baby bottles completely clean?

No matter what we do, we can't seem to get rid of that white residue. We've tried hand washing, using the dishwasher, soaking, scrubbing, hot water, cool water. We use Dr. Brown's brand, and the blue inside tube part is particularly difficult to get clean. I'm beginning to wonder if the problem is related to our water.

Have you ever dealt with this? Suggestions? Thanks in advance for the feedback!