May 31, 2010

Fast and Furious Giveaway: (2) Tickets to Summerfair in Cincy This Weekend!


Are you in the greater Cincinnati area? Looking for some frugal family fun this weekend?

Summerfair 2010 at Coney Island is here!

On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, you can pack up your bunch and head down to Coney Island for all the events available at Summerfair, including entertainment and hands-on arts and crafts for the kiddos (almost all of which are absolutely FREE!). Here's a look at the arts and crafts schedule(courtesy of the official site of Summerfair) :

Friday
2:00 - 5:00 William Howard Taft National Historic Site Presidential Crafts
2:00 - 5:00 Lebanon Mason Monroe Railroad - Meet the Conductors
3:00 - 5:00 Home Depot Build a Wood Project
3:00 - 6:00 Create-a-T*

Saturday
10:00 - 1:00 Lowe's Building Kits
10:00 - 5:00 Mad Science Fun Station - Make SLIME!
10:00 - 8:00 William Howard Taft National Historic Site Presidential Crafts
10:00 - 8:00 Lebanon Mason Monroe Railroad - Meet the Conductors
12:00 - 3:00 Benken Florist Paint'n'Pot
12:00 - 6:00 Create-a-T*

Sunday
10:00 - 4:00 Lebanon Mason Monroe Railroad - Meet the Conductors
10:00 - 5:00 William Howard Taft National Historic Site Presidential Crafts
11:00 - 4:00 Create-a-T*
12:00 - 3:00 Benken Florist Paint'n'Pot
12:00 - 5:00 Home Depot Build a Wood Project

* minimal fee required

Besides the fun for the smallfolk, there are oodles of local artists in all sorts of media that will be part of the exhibition. Add to that vocalists, dancers, strolling entertainers, and puppets and face painting for the kids and you've got a day full of unique fun for your family.

Summerfair tickets are $10 for adults (which includes your parking) and children 12 and under are free; you can even buy tickets online right here.

I have graciously been given (2) tickets to give away to one lucky reader!

Simply leave me a comment on this post letting me know that you want to win - how easy is that?

I'll be closing this giveaway on Wednesday, 6/2, at 10 pm and announcing the winner selected by Random.org on Thursday, 6/3. if you do enter, please check back on Thursday or check your email; I'll be mailing those tickets out Thursday afternoon once I have the winner's shipping address.

Remember you must leave your email address or some other way to find you online; entries without a means of contact will be disqualified.

Good luck!

Meal Plan Monday | Summer is Here!



I plan my family's dinners in five week blocks to maximize my savings at the grocery store and minimize my stress at dinner time. You can read more about my strategy here in my Q&A post here.

I also answered several more questions about how I plan my big ol' menus and how I shop for them.  For more Q&A (because you're just dying to know, right?), click here.

**************************************

May is over, summer is here, and I'm looking foward to a more relaxed schedule over the next two months or so.

I have yet to plan a new 5 Week Meal Plan -- I want to put together one based around recipes from the gril -- but I did slap a meal plan together for this week. While summer might be here, my kiddos are still in school for another week or so and we've got plenty of busy nights ahead.

Here's what's for dinner this week:

Monday: Grilled Pizza (it didn't come out as pretty as Erin's but it was VERY tasty!)

Tuesday: Taco night!

Wednesday: Awesome Roast Beef and Noodles, salad

Thursday: Breakfast for dinner: pancakes, scrambled eggs, fruit

Friday: Grilled chicken, Grilled potato planks, corn on the cob

Saturday: Leftover cleanout!

Sunday: Mini Cheeseburgers on the grill, Macaroni Salad

Be sure to visit the Meal Plan Monday linkeroo over at Orgjunkie.com to get more menu plan ideas and share yours as well!

To Our US Service Members - Thank You


"The dead soldier's silence sings our national anthem."
-Rev. Aaron Kilbourn

To all those who have served in our nation's Armed Forces, thank you for your sacrifice.

Enjoy your Memorial Day and please take a moment to pray for our US Service Members, for their families, and for those who made the ultimate sacrifice to guarantee the freedom of generations to come.

See you tomorrow!

May 30, 2010

Weekly Deals Roundup | 05/30-06/05

Looking for the matchups for this week?

Check out these sites for the best matchups this week, May 30 - June 5, 2010.

*Kroger (06/01-06/06 --- note that this ad begins on TUESDAY, 6/1, due to the holiday tomorrow)*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Mommy Snacks)

*Meijer*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Stockpiling Moms)

*Aldi*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Cincinnati Cents)

*Biggs/Remke*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Saving Money Wisely)

*CVS*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Bargain Briana)

*Walgreens*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Common Sense with Money)

*Rite Aid*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of A Thrifty Mom)

*Target*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Stretching a Buck)

*Walmart*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Passion for Savings)

Have a post with Cincinnati area store matchups? Please leave your link in the comments and I'll add it to the list. ;-)

May 29, 2010

What I Saved at the Stores {Week 20 & 21 of 2010}


Each Saturday, I detail what I spent and saved at the stores; this weekly post is my way of keeping myself on track for my weekly budget goals in 2010.

I hope that by sharing what I saved, you'll be inspired to keep couponing week in and week out.  Over time, your stockpile of high-use items for your family will grow and your total weekly bill will keep coming down, down, down!

Week 20 (May 17-23)

I took that week off from blogging, but not from saving.  8-)

I don't have any pictures so let me just share my totals:

Spent: $80.95
Saved: $45.25 (36%)

Week 21 (May 24-30)

Kroger, 5/24

Spent: $38.56 oop + $10 MC from PG rebate (April)
Saved: $49.62 (50%)
Earned: $3.00 catalina OYNO for (4) Kraft Salad Dressings

Read about the coupons I used at my weekly Let's Go Krogering! post.

Aldi 5/24
(No picture - so darn busy this week!)
Spent: $40.20
Saved: $0.00

Walgreens 5/24
(Trip 1)
Spent: $4.50
Saved: $18.50

(Trip 2 - 5/28)
Spent: $21.55
Saved: $1.00

And...one last trip to Kroger for party goodies 5/28
Spent: $25.99
Saved: $25.38 (50%)


Weekly Totals (Week 21):

Spent: $130.89 (ouch -- gotta love parties, right?!)
Saved: $91.70 (4158%)

My weekly budget target of $80/week which I totally blew this week. And I'm over budget for the last four weeks as well but not by too much:

4 Week Totals:
Spent:  $370.13
Saved:  $314.63 (46%)

I'm $50 above my target but we did host (2) big family get togethers at our home during those four weeks.  That costs out to about $25/party which isn't too bad.

With June -- and the end of school -- just around the corner, I'm hoping for two things:  that my kiddos don't eat me out of house and home all summer long and that Kroger will kick off the summer with another great Mega Event sale.  I'd love to come in under budget for June after this month!
If you're new to the fabulous world of keeping more of your hard earned money in your pockets by strategic couponing and drugstore shopping, I encourage you to read these posts to help you get started.




You can save like this, too!  In fact, I know you can do this; if you're surfing the web reading this site and others like it, you can learn all you need to know. 

If you have any questions, please ask in a comment!  I love to share what I know about couponing and saving money with you -- it's why I write this site.  ;-)

Did you save big this week at the stores? Be sure to link your post up over at Money Saving Mom's weekly linkup, Super Savings Saturday.

Thanks for reading and subscribing to The New Frugal Mom!

In This Sunday's Inserts | May 30, 2010 {None, Zilch-o, Nada!}

It's always useful to know how many coupon inserts to expect each Sunday and even more useful to know which coupons you'll find in those inserts so you can decide as early as possible if it's a good week to order coupons from a clipping service.

This Sunday, 05/30/10, there will be NO inserts in the Sunday newspapers.

This is common on big holiday weekends; many of us are busy this weekend with cookouts, heading to our local pool (ours opens today) and other fun events. From a business point of view, it makes little sense to spend advertising dollars on coupon inserts when many people won't even look at their Sunday paper this jam-packed weekend.

Of course, from a couponista point of view, a holiday weekend means extra time to get those coupons organized and clipped, so the lack of inserts is a bit of a bummer.

Here's my advice to you if you find yourself with a time to spare this weekend:

1. Print whatever coupons you like at Coupons.com, Smartsource.com, RedPlum.com, etc. A new month will be here on Tuesday which means the printable coupons at these sites will change by the end of the week.

2. Get organized! I can't possibly be the only person wondering where where?! May went, can I? It has been a cuh-razy busy month for me and my coupon box and my coupon insert file folder could use a good cleaning up and cleaning out. Looking for some ideas on how to keep your coupons organized? I wrote a post about how to find and organize coupons a while ago; click here to read it.

3. Give a little or a lot. Have some extras in your stockpile? Take a bag or so to your local food pantry (click here to find one near you) or women's crisis shelter.

Enjoy your weekend!

May 27, 2010

Freebie Roundup!


Time for some freebies! Click on through and make your mailbox happy!

:: Get two FREE samples of Kraft Sandwich Shop Mayo; click here.*

:: Love P&G products (who doesn't have at least one fave, right?!). Join Every Day Solutions to get FREE samples and coupons on products you know and love. Click here to get started.*

:: Request a FREE sample of Miracle Skin Transformer Lotion right here.

:: Login into your Vocalpoint account and request a FREE sample of Crystal Light Pure Fitness right here. (I had to login, then go back to get the form to load, fyi).

:: Send a FREE copy of Julie Buxbaum's novel, After You, to a friend; click here for the form.

Enjoy!

*Contains affiliate link.

May 26, 2010

Hip Hip Hurray Giveaway | $25 for eReach Big Deal - Big Savings on Local Events, Restaurants, Services & Fun!


It's Wednesday...time for a giveaway!


I was recently contacted by eReach which is the online version of the Reach Magazine, a circular that features coupons for local businesses (I always stash my copy in the front of my coupon file folder).

eReach recently launched the Big Deal - a daily deal for big savings on local businesses (think restaurants, fun places to go, services, ticketed venues and games).  It's similar to other collective shopping sites; you sign up for the deal and other people do the same.  When the magic number of deals is reached, the deal is available and you get it - so if you see a deal that you really want, you're encouraged to share it with your friends, family, via email, on facebook, etc. 

The Big Deal is available here in Cincinnati and Dayton and in several other markets that Reach serves which are::

::Eastern US
::Evansville, IN
::Indianapolis
::Richmond, VA
::South Central Kentucky
::Toledo, OH
::Western US
::Youngstown, OH

You can sign up to get email alerts of each day's new Big Deal.  If you see one you like, you can click on over to eReach and grab it.

Some recent deals in the Cincinnati area include:

:: $30 for $60 of fun at Entertrainment Junction (in West Chester)
:: $5 for $10 at the Anderson and Amelia Donato's Pizza (mmmmm!)

And this deal, which is still available:

:: $40 for (4) Reds tickets and (4) Reds ballcaps for the upcoming Memorial Day weekend games, Fri 7:10 p, Sat 7:10 p, or Sun, 1:10 p.  The true value of this package is $128 - that's a really BIG DEAL! Click here if you want it!

Onto this week's giveaway!

I have been graciously given a $25 eReach Big Deal gift certificate/code to give to one lucky reader!

How to enter:

What's your hands down favorite destination for fun where you live?  It can be family friendly, a local restuarant, a beach, a park -- and it can be free (my fave flavor!) -- share it in a comment below.

You can earn an additional (2) chances to win as well.

1. Tweet about this giveaway then come back here and leave me a separate comment to let me know you tweeted (add the url from your tweet please).

2. Subscribe to my RSS feed by reader or email and leave a separate comment to let me know you're a new subscriber; you can also drop me a separate comment to let me know if you're already a subscriber for this extra entry.

Remember, you MUST leave me some way to find you online (by email or by your Twitter handle) if you don't have a blog - and if you do have a blog that is not public, be sure to leave me a means of contacting you. Entries with no contact information or means of contacting you online will be disqualified.

This giveaway will end on TUESDAY, June 1, 2010, at 10:00 pm EST. I will announce the winners (selected by Random.org) on WEDNESDAY, June 2, 2010.

Good luck!

*DISCLOSURE: I received a $25 gift certificate/code to eReach Big Deal as well; for more about my personal disclosure policy, read my disclosure page.

May 25, 2010

Rite Aid Wellness Rewards Program | Join and Get a $5/$25 Coupon!


I've seen the new Rite Aid Wellness Rewards Program mentioned on several other blogs recently (most notably my friend Jenny's; she is one hilarious coupon geek but I do love how she uses her Coupon Superpowers for good - go Jenny!) but haven't mentioned it here simply because I don't have a Rite Aid near me and only shop there once or twice a year.

But if you are a Single Check Rebate lovin' couponista, you need to know about the new Rite Aid Wellness Rewards program because it can save you even more money.

Some highlights:

:: Save 10% on all Rite Aid brands.

:: Earn reward points on your purchase; use those points to get up to 20% off your non-prescription purchases.

:: Get members only deals and coupons (like earning coupons by watching short videos at their Video Values site).

Right now, you can sign up for the Rite Aid Wellness Rewards Program for free and earn a $5/$25 coupon for your next purchase. Sweet!

Click here to get started.

If you're new to saving money at Rite Aid and need to learn how to save big, read this post to get the lowdown on how the Single Check Rebate system works (thanks, I Am A Money Magnet).

For this week's Rite Aid ad matchup, click here (thanks, A Thrifty Mom).

Enjoy!

*Disclosure: Contains an affiliate link; for more on my personal disclosure policy, click here.

FREE 40 Photo Prints from York Photo


I love free photo prints and I wanted to share this with you in case you've used some of the other photo print freebies out there and are looking for another offer.

Right now, you can get 40 FREE prints from York Photo plus another 100 prints for $0.04 ea ($4.00 total) when you sign up for a FREE account.

Click here to get started.

These free photo print deals are nice to have during this busy and eventful time of year!

Enjoy!

*DISCLOSURE: Contains an affiliate link; for more on my personal disclosure policy, click here.

Let's Go Krogering! Week of May 24, 2010


Do love finding deals at your Kroger? This feature is for you! Link your post about what deals you found at your local Kroger or Kroger-affiliated store. Simple rules are here; the 149x149 button is in my sidebar.

My Krogering Trip, Monday, May 24, 2010


Spent: $38.56 oop + $10 MC from PG rebate (April)
Saved: $49.62 (50%)
Earned: $3.00 catalina OYNO for (4) Kraft Salad Dressings

We have a birthday boy here at my house this week, one who wants popsicles to share at school and t-ball on his special day. We've also got a birthday get together this weekend with family so I took advantage of the deal on pop at Kroger this week as well.

Here's the coupons I used:

Coke 12 pks, 4/$10.00 ($2.50 ea; must buy 4 for discount)
$2.00/4 12 Coke product 12 pks, Kroger My Magazine coupon
Final price: 4/$8.00 or $2.00 ea

Popsicle Scribblers, 24 ct, $4.09 ea
$0.50/1, insert in my daughter's Nat'l Geographic for Kids magazine this month (she found it and was so excited to share it with me - that's my girl!)
Final price: $3.09 ea

Betty Crocker Cake Mix, $1.00 ea + BC Frosting, $1.49 ea
$0.75/2 BC Cake Mix AND BC Frosting, SS 03/28
Final price: 2/$1.49 or $0.75 ea

Wheat Thin Crackers, $1.88 ea
$1.00/2, SS 05/16
Final price: $1.38 ea

Kraft Salad Dressing, $1.67 ea
$0.55/1, SS 05/02
Final price: $0.67 ea
*Catalina deal: Buy (4) Kraft Dressings, get a $3.00 OYNO catalina!*

Oscar Mayer Weiners, $1.25 ea
$0.75/1, Kroger My Magazine coupon
Final price: $0.25 ea

Bluegrass Brats, $2.50 ea
$0.50/1, SS 05/23
Final price: $1.50 ea

Oscar Mayer Turkey Pastrami, 3.89 ea
FREE OM Turkey Pastrami, Kraft First Taste mailer coupon
Final price: FREE!

French's Mustard, $1.49 ea
$0.50/1 printable hereFinal price: $0.49 ea

To see this week's Kroger ad matchup, click here (thanks, Mommy Snacks!).

Remember to check your weekly ad online for any other items you might need right here.

How'd you do at Kroger (or your Kroger-affiliated grocery store) this week? Link *your* Let's Go Krogering! post or your Kroger matchup post all week and help another reader save some $$!



Thanks for reading and subscribing to The New Frugal Mom!

May 24, 2010

Giveaway Winners | Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Vac + Protect-A-Bed Premium Mattress Protector Set!

Thanks to all who entered my recent giveaway for a Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Vac and a Protect-a-Bed Premium Mattress Protector set. 

I asked you to share what your gotta-have-it item was around your house and so many of you noted either baby wipes or cleaning wipes as yours- they are darn useful! 

Besides my coffee maker (which is the most used kitchen appliance at my house), I am a HUGE fan of the Mr. Clean Magic Erasers.   They do an amazing job cleaning the bath tub and I've gotten more crayon than I care to remember off of our walls with them, too.

Onto the winners!

For the Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Vac, the winner is:

#47: Kristi

For the Protect-A-Bed Premium Mattress Protector Set, the winner is:

#88: Bhav

Congrats!  I'll be in touch with you by email soon!

Meal Plan Monday | Week 5 of My 5 Week Plan {Busy, Busy, BUSY!}



I plan my family's dinners in five week blocks to maximize my savings at the grocery store and minimize my stress at dinner time. You can read more about my strategy here in my Q&A post here.

I also answered several more questions about how I plan my big ol' menus and how I shop for them.  For more Q&A (because you're just dying to know, right?), click here.

**************************************
Menu Plan VI (May 2010)

I took a week off from blogging (and social media in general) last week but I didn't take a week off from meal planning...or from using my current 5 Week Meal Plan.

It's times like this -- MAY!! -- when we are so darn busy with sports, school, events, family, holidays, you name it, that meal planning really lowers my stress level. A little advanced planning based on our schedule means one less thing to worry about.

This week, I am busier than a one-legged man in a...well, you know the saying. 8-) We've got a couple of events added to our schedule and I just got word that all the makeup games for tball and softball have been scheduled as well, meaning more stuff to squeeze into the next 24/7. Is May over yet?!

I've changed just a couple of things on our meal plan this week as a result. Here's what's for dinner at my house this week.

Week 5: 5/24-5/30
Monday: Spaghetti & Meatballs

Tuesday: Taco Night!

Wednesday: Happy Birthday! Dinner out for my older son (after his tball game; I searched Kids Meal Deals for a local restaurant where my kids can eat for free or nearly free!)

Thursday: Free night -- attending a family fun event.

Friday: Grilled Pizza (this sounds soooo good; go see how my friend Erin made this for her wild bunch last week)

Saturday: Grilling out - big ol' family party for my son's birthday!

Sunday: Leftovers - is there anything better than leftovers from the grill? Mmmmmmm!

Be sure to visit the Meal Plan Monday linkeroo over at Orgjunkie.com to get more menu plan ideas and share yours as well!

May 23, 2010

Weekly Deals Roundup | 05/23/10 - 05/29/10

Looking for the matchups for this week?

Check out these sites for the best matchups this week, May 23 - May 29, 2010.

*Kroger (05/24-05/30)*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Mommy Snacks)

*Meijer*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Stockpiling Moms)

*Aldi*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Cincinnati Cents)

*Biggs*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Saving Money Wisely)

*CVS*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Bargain Briana)

*Walgreens*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Common Sense with Money)

*Rite Aid*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of A Thrifty Mom)

*Target*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Stretching a Buck)

*Walmart*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Passion for Savings)

Have a post with Cincinnati area store matchups? Please leave your link in the comments and I'll add it to the list. ;-)

May 18, 2010

Quick Update | Week Off

May is one BUSY month for me, my kiddos, and my family as a whole.  It seems like every day is just jam-packed with more than I can possibly do in 24 hours.

I'm taking this week off from blogging here so I can keep my head above water with all I need to do in real life. 

Be sure to enter my current giveaway for a Bissel Pet Hair Eraser Vacuum and a Protect-a-Bed Premium Mattress Protector Set here.  Ends 5/21, 10 pm EST.  I'll announce the winners on Monday, 5/24. 

Have a great week!

May 15, 2010

What I Saved at the Stores | Week 19 of 2010


Each Saturday, I detail what I spent and saved at the stores; this weekly post is my way of keeping myself on track for my weekly budget goals in 2010.

I hope that by sharing what I saved, you'll be inspired to keep couponing week in and week out.  Over time, your stockpile of high-use items for your family will grow and your total weekly bill will keep coming down, down, down!

Kroger, 5/10
Spent: $55.54
Saved: $77.46 (58%)
Read about the coupons I used at my weekly Let's Go Krogering! post.

Aldi 5/10
Spent: $25.18
Saved: $0.00

Walgreens 5/09

Spent: $1.29 cash + $5.00 RRs
Saved: $16.20 (93%)
Earned: $5.00 RRs on the Hydro Razor
*I also had a $1.00/2 Skippy PB - it was a Walgreens catalina q that I held onto
because PB is a food group unto itself at our house! *

CVS 5/9
(I lucked into a $1.00/1 CVS Hair Care q & a $1.00/2 CVS First Aid q
from the CVS coupon machine!  WOOT!)
Spent: $2.42 + $5.00 ECBs
Saved: $24.95 (91%)
Earned: $4.00 ECBs on (2) deodorants
 
Weekly Totals:

Spent: $84.43
Saved: $118.64 (58%)

I'm just a bit over my weekly budget target of $80/week but I was under last week so I'm good to go after I average my totals.  8-)

If you're new to the fabulous world of keeping more of your hard earned money in your pockets by strategic couponing and drugstore shopping, I encourage you to read these posts to help you get started.




You can save like this, too!  In fact, I know you can do this; if you're surfing the web reading this site and others like it, you can learn all you need to know. 

If you have any questions, please ask in a comment!  I love to share what I know about couponing and saving money with you -- it's why I write this site.  ;-)

Did you save big this week at the stores? Be sure to link your post up over at Money Saving Mom's weekly linkup, Super Savings Saturday.

Thanks for reading and subscribing to The New Frugal Mom!

May 14, 2010

HOT DEAL | FREE Reward from Tropicana Juicy Rewards -- Good Today 5/14 ONLY!

A while back, I shared with you that I had been selected to be a Tropicana Juicy Insider -- one of the several bloggers selected to help promote the new Tropicana Juicy Rewards program.

Well, after careful consideration on my part of my current blogging schedule, I took myself off the Juicy Insiders program (and sent back the $50 GC they had sent me to use as part of the program) because I am already committed here and there and everywhere with blogging and I wanted to see my spot go to another blogger who would be able to enthusiastically spread the word.

Sometimes, you gotta know when to say thanks but no thanks! 8-)

However...I still get updates about the Tropicana Juicy Rewards program and today's email is one I wanted to share with you because YOU can get something FREE today! (My *fave* flavor!)

Today ONLY, 5/14, all registered Juicy Rewards account holders can pick one FREE Juicy Reward! Even if you haven't registered for an account, you can start one today and grab this deal. There are a few exceptions to this deal as noted in the fine print but only just a few - most everything else is up for grabs!

I'm planning on grabbing some B1G1FREE golf passes for my hubs and our littlest guy (who is 4 and a golf FREAK!). 8-)

Be sure to check it out here TODAY before this FREE Juicy Reward disappears!

Enjoy!

HOT COUPON | Shoe Carnival - up to $15 off $39.98+ - Good on Buy 1, Get 1 50% off Sales!


Have a Shoe Carnival store near you? Click on the banner above and print a coupon for $5, $10, or $15 off your purchase of $39.98 or more; you can use it on in-store Buy One, Get One 50% off, too!

You can click here to print your coupon as well.

Enjoy!

*Disclosure: This coupon contains an affiliate link; for more about my disclosure policy, click here.

In This Sunday's Inserts | May 16, 2010 {1 RP, 1 SS}

It's always useful to know how many coupon inserts to expect each Sunday and even more useful to know which coupons you'll find in those inserts so you can decide as early as possible if it's a good week to order coupons from a clipping service.

This Sunday, 05/09/10, these are the inserts you can expect to see in your newspaper:

:: (1) Smart Source (SS)

:: (1) Red Plum (RP)

These coupons look good to me:

Smart Source

$2.50 Bertolli Olive Oil REBATE FORM

$3.00 Finesse REBATE FORM

$1.00 Huggies Little Swimmers

$1.00 General Foods International Coffee Mix

$2.00 Jergens Natural Glow Moisturizer

$0.50 Land O Lakes Eggs

$0.40 Orville Redenbacher Popcorn

B1G1FREE Stride Gum

Red Plum

$0.25/1 3 Musketeers Truffle Crisp, Mint, or Original

$2.00/1 Oxi Liquid Laundry Detergent

B1G1FREE Aussie Hair Products

$2.00/1 Centrum 200 ct or Centrum Kids 150 ct,

$2.00/1 Complete Contact Lens Solution

B1G1FREE Gillette Deodorant (up to $4.99)

$1.00/1 Purdue Perfect Portions BLSL Chicken

$1.00/1 Uncle Ben's Ready Rice

(LOTS of great coupons in this week's RP!)

For a full preview of what coupons you should see in this insert (remember, coupon values can/will vary by region and your local newspaper may not carry all available inserts), click here (thanks, Sunday Coupon Preview!) and check here as well (thanks, Taylor Town Preview).

Enjoy!

May 13, 2010

Hip Hip Hurray Giveaway | Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Vacuum & Protect-A-Bed Premium Mattress Protector Set (One Winner for Each Prize!)



I have a FANTASTIC giveaway for you this week - hold onto your seats, folks!

I was recently asked to review both the Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Vacuum and the Protect-a-Bed Premium Mattress Protectors as part of the upcoming Good Housekeeping Institute Research Mobile Tour that will be featured at the Taste of Cincinnati, May 29-31, 2010.

This review was a no-brainer for me because I already own and love these products - see?!


When we needed a new vacuum in the spring of 2009 (our old Hoover finally gave up the ghost after 13 years), I did my research and decided to buy a Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Vacuum. We were a two dog family at that time and I liked the idea of a vacuum designed to handle pet hair. I also liked that this vacuum came standard with a HEPA filter; my older son has asthma triggered by allergies so anything we can do to improve air quality is a big deal to us.

One of the other benefits of this vacuum is the Easy Empty dirt canister. I don't have to worry about having vacuum bags any more (something I always ran out of and always grumbled about having to spend extra $$ on). I simply empty the dirt canister every time I use it, rinse it clean, and let it dry. EASY!

The other big plus on this vacuum is the Pet Turbo Brush attachment. I use it on my couch (yes, our dog is SPOILED!) and on the stairs, two of my tough-to-get-clean spots.

I *love* this vacuum! If you're looking to buy one, they retail starting at $149.99 at Target, Kohls, Best Buy, Lowes, Sears, Shopko, Meijer, Amazon and Linens N Things.

While you can't see the Protect-a-Bed Premium Mattress Protector in this picture, you can see my little guy hamming it up for the camera:


We use the PAB Premium Mattress Protector on our bed as well as our older son's bed.

Why?

Again, it comes back to the allergen-reduction that this product offers. When you think about all the hours you spend sleeping in your lifetime and then consider all the many allergens that can accumulate in your bedding (from dust and dust mites to bacteria and molds), using the PAB Premium Mattress Protector to decreses that allergen exposure makes sense.

Add to that the fact that this protector is waterproof and believe me, moms, you'l be glad you have this product to protect that pricey mattress set in your kiddo's bed. (Ever potty-trained a toddler? Had a kid puke their guts out at 2 am? I rest my case.)

The PAB Premium Mattress Protector comes in all sizes and retails starting at $59.99 for a twin mattress. You can also purchase a PAB Premium Pillow Protector {for your favorite drooler 8-) } which comes in several sizes and retails at $19.99 for a standard size pillow.

Onto the giveaway!

I've been graciously given a (1) Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Vacuum (a $149.99 value) and (1) Protect-A-Bed Premium Mattress Protector Set ($59.99 and up) + Pillow Protector Set ($19.99 and up) (winner picks the size they need) to give away to (1) winner each (total of {2} winners; #1 will receive the Vacuum, #2 will receive the PAB products).

How to enter:

Share with us your personal gotta-have-it-can't-live-without-it household product. It can be a cleaning product, an appliance, or something that just makes your life a little nicer or easier in some way. We all have at least one - what's yours?

You can earn an additional (4) chances to win as well.

1. Tweet about this giveaway and be sure to add @Protect_A_Bed AND @WeMeanClean to your tweet then come back here and leave me a separate comment to let me know you tweeted (add the url from your tweet please).

2. Visit Protect-A-Bed on Facebook and leave a comment on their wall; come back and leave a comment here that you did.

3. Visit Bissell on Facebook and leave a comment on their wall; come back and leave a comment here that you did.

4. Subscribe to my RSS feed by reader or email and leave a separate comment to let me know you're a new subscriber; you can also drop me a separate comment to let me know if you're already a subscriber for this extra entry.

Remember, you MUST leave me some way to find you online (by email or by your Twitter handle) if you don't have a blog - and if you do have a blog that is not public, be sure to leave me a means of contacting you. Entries with no contact information or means of contacting you online will be disqualified.

This giveaway will end on FRIDAY, May 21, 2010, at 10:00 pm EST. I will announce the winners (selected by Random.org) on MONDAY, May 24, 2010.

Good luck!

*DISCLOSURE: I received NO products and NO compensation for offering this giveaway; I already own and love the products and can endorse them whole-heartedly. When I learned that Protect-A-Bed and Bissell wanted to offer the same high quality products to YOU as a prize, I was thrilled to do so. 8-) For more about my personal disclosure policy, read my disclosure page.

Freebie Roundup!


Time for some freebies! Click on through and make your mailbox happy!

:: Fill out this form to receive a coupon for a FREE bottle of Suave Professionals Shampoo or Conditioner.

:: Encourage other moms and your community to embrace and celebrate the important work we moms do every day (not just on Mother's Day) with this FREE bumper sticker from MomsRising.com.

:: Thinking of starting a garden this spring? Request a FREE vegetable garden guide from Burpee's right here.

:: Request a FREE sample of Eucering Body Lotion right here.

:: Live near a Godiva Chocolate shop (I did once, a loooong time ago...yum!). Sign up for a Godiva Chocolate Rewards card and you can stop in the store every month for a FREE piece of Godiva Chocolate (as well as some other nice loyalty rewards, too). Click here to register.

Enjoy!

May 12, 2010

Rebate Alert | $3.00 on Blue Rhino Propane Tanks


Here's a nice rebate for those of you getting your gas grills ready for the coming summer season.

Click here and print this form for a $3.00 rebate when you buy a new Blue Rhino propane tank or excange a Blue Rhino propane tank.

For locations near you that sell/exchange Blue Rhino tanks, click here.

This rebate expires 12/31/2011 so even if you don't need propane now for your grill, print it out and save it because you'll likely need propane within the next 18 months.

And if you do grill quite a bit, the limit on this rebate is one per household per calendar year; you can submit a form and a receipt for 2010 as well as ones for 2011 - nice!

Enjoy!

May 11, 2010

Let's Go Krogering! Week of May 10, 2010


Do love finding deals at your Kroger? This feature is for you! Link your post about what deals you found at your local Kroger or Kroger-affiliated store. Simple rules are here; the 149x149 button is in my sidebar.

My Krogering Trip, Monday, May 10, 2010


Transaction #1
Spent: $53.84
Saved: $67.40 (55%)
Earned: $2.00 catalina OYNO for (2) Breyer's Ice Cream +
$1.00 catalina OYNO of chicken or beef for (3) OEP Taco Seasonings

Transaction #2 (4 boxes of Cheerios @ $2.00 ea)
Spent: $1.70 + $2.00 catalina on Breyers
Saved: $9.56 (84%)

The P&G Sale Event this week - buy (4) participating items, get an instant $4.00 off your order at checkout. If you have some P&G *faves* this sale is a great way to stock up on those items. For me, a P&G sale event means it's time to stock up on Iams for our hound. ;-)

I also took advantage of some of the current catalina deals at Kroger, ones I have personally seen as shelf tags (usually white with red borders) beneath the products as well as ones I've found here and here.  While my Breyers and OEPaso catalinas printed, the GM cereal and the Lawry's Marinade ones did not. 

I've contacted Catalina Marketing (coupon (at) catalinamarketing.com) regarding these should-have-printed catalinas.  If this happens to you, I encourage you to do the same.  I always have an email reply within 24 hours with instructions on what I need to do to get those high dollar catalinas. 

While $9.00 might not seem like a huge amount of money, I know that with the use of sales and coupons I can easily double the buying power of that $9.00 to $18.00 or $20.00; after all, I consistently save about 50% a week at Kroger.  Looking at it from that perspective makes me more willing to go the extra mile to get those catalinas.

One last note - I saw OODLES of Kraft and Nabisco brand coupons in store yesterday -- either as blinkies or tearpads.  Be on the lookout for those and be sure to leave some for the next couponista - it's never cool to take ALL the coupons.  ;-)  Hopefully we'll see a mega sale event at Kroger that features Kraft/Nabisco products as we gear up for Memorial Day and the start of summer.

Here's the coupons I used:

Bumblebee Tuna Pouch, $1.49 ea
$0.50/1 blinkie found in store
Final price: $0.49 ea

Cinnamon Toast Crunch, $2.00 ea
Several $0.55/1 printables here, here, and here
Final price: $1.00 ea

Iams Dog Food, $15.99 | $14.99 after sale event discount
$2.00/1, Kroger catalina I received a few weeks ago
Final price: $13.99 | $12.99

Kahn Weiners, $2.97 ea (on sale BOGO)
$1.00/2, ? hmmm, can't find location but it was in my coupon box
Final price: 2/$1.97 or $0.99 ea

Reeses Dark PB Cups, $0.50 ea
$0.55/1, SS 03/14
Final price: FREE!

Honeysuckle Turkey Tenderloin, 30 oz, $8.99 (on sale BOGO)
$1.00/1 printable here
Final price: 2/$6.99 or $3.50 ea

Lawry's Marinade, $1.99 ea
$0.50/1, RP 04/18
Final price: $0.99

OEPaso Taco Seasoning, $1.09 ea
$0.60/2 OEP products, printable here
Final price: $0.59 ea

Breyer's Ice Cream, $3.99 ea
$1.25/2, Kroger loyal customer mailer coupon
Final price: $3.37 ea

Oral B Toothbrush, $3.69 | $2.69 after sale event discount
$1.50/1, Kroger catalina
Final price: $2.19 | $1.19 after sale discount

Yoplait Yogurt cups, $0.50 ea
$0.50/8, SS 04/25
Final price: $0.38 ea

Yoplait Greek Yogurt, $1.19 ea
$0.30/1, printable here
Final price: $0.59 ea

Danimals Smoothies, $2.69 ea
$1.00/1, Kroger loyal customer coupon
Final price: $1.69 ea

Crest Kids Toothpaste, $2.50 ea | $1.50 ea after sale discount
$0.50/1, PG 5/2
Final price: $1.50 ea | $0.50 ea after sale discount

Cheerios, $2.00 ea
$0.55/1 printables here and here
$0.50/1, SS 05/09
Final price: $1.00 ea

I also used (in Trans #1):

$3.00 catalina earned last week from Kellogg cereal promotion
$2.00/$10.00 Dairy purchase, Kroger loyal customer coupon
$5.00/$50.00 purchase, Kroger loyal customer coupon

To see this week's Kroger ad matchup, click here (thanks, Mommy Snacks!).

Remember to check your weekly ad online for any other items you might need right here.

How'd you do at Kroger (or your Kroger-affiliated grocery store) this week? Link *your* Let's Go Krogering! post or your Kroger matchup post all week and help another reader save some $$!



Thanks for reading and subscribing to The New Frugal Mom!

May 10, 2010

FREE Pancake Puppies Sundae at Denny's (Printable Coupon exp. 5/16)


Have a Denny's near you? Print this coupon for a FREE Pancake Puppies Sundae and use it purchase an item off of the value menu or an entree off of the regular menu. Expires Sunday, 5/16. Yum!

Enjoy!

FREE Dr. Scholl's Insert for Her


Wow - this is a great FREEbie to start the week!

Click here and request a FREE set of Dr. Scholl's Inserts for Her.

You can also print a $2.00/1 coupon for this product right here.

Enjoy!

Milestone Monday | Celebrating Victories {*New Feature*}

Have you reached a milestone, conquered a challenge, or met a goal - big or small - that you've been working toward for a while? Maybe it's financial, maybe it's health related, maybe it's a career or a personal goal or something simple like finally getting a closet cleaned out - whatever it may be, celebrate your success!

Post about your victories at your blog and link them to my Milestone Monday post every Monday; the MckLinky will be open for the following week I'll add a tab labled "MM" to the navigation bar at the top of my site for easy reference.


A little after the new year arrived, my husband Knute and I set some fresh financial goals for 2010.

The biggest one: eliminating our debt without liquidating any investments to do so and while continuing to save cash for next year's parochial school tuition for our two oldest children (something we save and pay in full each August to save $$ by avoiding the 10 month payment plan that charges simple interest).

Our debt was spread across three categories: revolving credit card debt, a secured loan (we took losses on two houses in a row as we moved for jobs - oy!), and our current mortgage.

We went after the credit card debt first; I am happy (soooo happy) to say that as of today, it is g.o.n.e. GONE!

While this is a big step toward our long term goals, it's just one small step. And it's one we've made before - we've had periods of time in our marriage when we had zero credit card debt, paying any charges that we incurred off every month.

The key this time is to make it stick, something we are both committed to doing and something that our life (given our relative stability now as compared to 2005-2007) now will help us do.

While we could have liquidated an investment to get out of debt sooner, we chose not to go that route. Like everyone else with investments, ours took a whopper of a hit in 2009 as the stock market trembled and fell; selling just didn't make sense, especially since I knew we could pay the debt off in a few months as long as we were persistent and goal-driven.

Yesterday, we celebrated just a little bit...a night out for dinner for both Mom's day (yay me!) and the done debt.

And tomorrow?

We start planning our work and working our plan for the next milestone on our horizon. More about that next Monday...

Have you reached a milestone this week? Big or small, take a moment to celebrate your victory. I hope you'll share your success and link your own Milestone Monday post below to encourage and inspire others!

Meal Plan Monday | Week 3 of My 5 Week Plan {One Change Based on Deal This Week at Kroger}



I plan my family's dinners in five week blocks to maximize my savings at the grocery store and minimize my stress at dinner time. You can read more about my strategy here in my Q&A post here.

I also answered several more questions about how I plan my big ol' menus and how I shop for them.  For more Q&A (because you're just dying to know, right?), click here.

**************************************
Menu Plan VI (May 2010)

While I love the structure that my menu plan gives me, there are weeks when I look at what I planned a few weeks earlier and realize that I need to make a few changes for the coming week.

Sometimes it's because I forgot an event on our family calendar (or an event has been added); sometimes it's because we were sick and didn't eat much the week before (thankfully, we've all been healthy as the proverbial horse since February). 

This week, I'm changing things a bit because I see a fabulous deal on  Honeysuckle Turkey Tenderloins (30 oz) at Kroger.  They're on sale this coming week for $8.99 with a BOGO (buy one, get one free) sale, too, making them 2/$8.99 for the final price.

Even better - there's a $1.00/1 Honeysuckle Turkey printable coupon available here (p. 4); I printed (2).  My final price after the BOGO sale and the coupons will be 2/$6.99 or $3.50 ea for over 2 lbs of turkey ea which is a nice deal.  I'll use one this week and freeze the other one for the future.

My point? Be flexible! Menu planning is important, yes, but be willing to change your menu plan as needed.

Here's what I'm making this week:

Week 3: 5/10-5/16
Monday: Turkey Tenderloin, Wild Rice, Steamed Veggies
Tuesday: Taco Night!
Wednesday: Bacon Cheeseburger Pizza + veggie sticks & salad
Thursday: Hot Dogs, Mac & Cheese, veggie sticks
Friday: Breakfast for dinner (thinking I might try this Blender Quiche + a big batch of French Toast Sticks so I can freeze the extras)
Saturday: Leftover cleanout
Sunday: Free night!

Be sure to visit the Meal Plan Monday linkeroo over at Orgjunkie.com to get more menu plan ideas and share yours as well!

May 9, 2010

*Coming Tomorrow* NEW Feature | Milestone Monday

Have you reached a milestone, conquered a challenge, or met a goal - big or small - that you've been working toward for a while? Maybe it's financial, maybe it's health related, maybe it's a career or a personal goal or something simple like finally getting a closet cleaned out - whatever it may be, celebrate your success!

Post about your victories at your blog and link them to my Milestone Monday post every Monday; the MckLinky will be open for the following week I'll add a tab labled "MM" to the navigation bar at the top of my site for easy reference.

I'll be sharing my first MM post tomorrow; I hope to see this feature grow into a great way to cheer for each other as we reach our goals.

Let's inspire and build each other up!

See you Monday....! ;-)

Weekly Deals Roundup | 05/09/10 - 05/15/10

Looking for the matchups for this week?

Check out these sites for the best matchups this week, May 9 - May 15, 2010.

*Kroger (05/10-05/16)*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Mommy Snacks)

*Meijer*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Cincinnati Cents)

*Aldi*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Cincinnati Cents)

*Biggs*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Saving Money Wisely)

*CVS*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Bargain Briana)

*Walgreens*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Common Sense with Money)

*Rite Aid*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Moms Need to Know)

*Target*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Stretching a Buck)

*Walmart*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Passion for Savings)

Have a post with Cincinnati area store matchups? Please leave your link in the comments and I'll add it to the list. ;-)

FREE Child Safety Temporary Tattoos


This is a great FREEbie for parents who are planning on traveling this summer, whether to far away places or to close - but crowded, like Kings Island - places.

Click here to request a FREE child safety temporary tattoo kit. It looks like all you'll have to do is add your phone number to the tattoo before applying it you your child's skin - easy!

Have a wonderful Mother's Day!

May 8, 2010

Stamp Out Hunger & Couponing for Community | Every Bit Helps!


Have you donated this week as part of Couponing for Community? If you haven't yet and you've got extras to spare from your pantry, you can bag 'em up and give them to your letter carrier today as part of Stamp Out Hunger.

Here's what's headed out to my mailbox:


And it's waiting by the front door for tomorrow:


You can add your picture or a link to your donation post at the Couponing for Community Facebook page here. I scrolled through the pictures and DUDE! Some of you couponistas are donating TONS of stuff! What a huge blessing to your community!

You can also link your post here at ChaChing on a Shoestring.  ;-)

Don't worry if you don't have 70 boxes of cereal to donate; I sure don't! This isn't a contest - every little bit that's donated helps. And if you make donating a bag or so a week a new habit (my personal goal), you can help your community year round and bless others with your mad coupon skillz. ;-)

Enjoy giving a little (or a lot) back today!

What I Saved at the Stores | Week 18 of 2010


Each Saturday, I detail what I spent and saved at the stores; this weekly post is my way of keeping myself on track for my weekly budget goals in 2010.

I hope that by sharing what I saved, you'll be inspired to keep couponing week in and week out.  Over time, your stockpile of high-use items for your family will grow and your total weekly bill will keep coming down, down, down!

Kroger, 5/3

Spent: $8.84
Saved: $12.67 (58%)
Earned: $3.00 catalina for buying (4) Kellogg's cereals
Read about the coupons I used at my weekly Let's Go Krogering! post.

Aldi 5/3
Spent: 36.50
Saved: $0.00

Walgreens 5/4

Spent: $4.38 cash + $6.00 RRs
Saved: $36.08 (89%)
*I just missed spending $15 on Nivea so I missed earning $5 RRs on that deal!*

Kroger 5/6
(I decided to stock up on cereal with the Kellogg's catalina deal.)
Spent: $2.85
Saved: $9.88 (77%)
Earned: $3.00 catalina on (4) Kellogg's cereals

Aldi 5/7
(No picture; I stopped in for some fresh fruit and snacks.)
Spent: $10.16
Saved: $0.00

Weekly Totals:

Spent: $62.73

Saved: $58.63 (48%)

I'm under my weekly budget target of $80/week which gives me room to splurge on stockpiling the deals should Kroger have a fantastic sale event this month.  *Fingers-crossed!*

If you're new to the fabulous world of keeping more of your hard earned money in your pockets by strategic couponing and drugstore shopping, I encourage you to read these posts to help you get started.

Couponing Crash Course

How to Save BIG at CVS

How to Save BIG at Walgreens

You can save like this, too!  In fact, I know you can do this; if you're surfing the web reading this site and others like it, you can learn all you need to know. 

If you have any questions, please ask in a comment!  I love to share what I know about couponing and saving money with you -- it's why I write this site.  ;-)

Did you save big this week at the stores? Be sure to link your post up over at Money Saving Mom's weekly linkup, Super Savings Saturday.

Thanks for reading and subscribing to The New Frugal Mom!

May 7, 2010

Changing Our Ways | Will Your "New" Frugal Stick?


I stumbled across two interesting articles this week about frugal living, penny pinching, and how the recession has changed our attitudes.

This one about penny pinching caught my eye as did this one about frugality outliving the recession.

The first article points out that you can save money on one thing but still be spending too much elsewhere, thus making no real progress. Penny pinching (giving up your $4 latte or lunch out, for example) will save you money but if you don't have an overall plan or larger goal for your financial health, that money you save may just end up spent somewhere else.

My take? Pinch those pennies for a purpose, one that you hold near and dear, a goal that has deep meaning for you. If you aren't emotionally invested in your money saving goals, staying committed will be difficult.

The second article I did really like because, hey! That's my attitude! No matter what happens with this economy, no matter what happens with our personal financial situation and health, I have so thoroughly changed the way I shop and spend money everyday that I cannot imagine ever going back to the Land of Retail and Full Price.

Couponing has created a pardigm shift for me - truly, once I realized just how much buying power I could create with coupons coupled with sales and store rebate programs, it was an epiphany. I can do this. I will do this.

Recession or not, my ways have changed for the better and my "new" frugal will stick for good.

How about you? Is your "new" frugal a new way of life?