January 31, 2011

COOK | Pantry Challenge Recipe Linkup for January 2011 {Canned Tomatoes}

Welcome to the first Pantry Challenge Recipe Linkup of 2011!

On the final Monday of each month, my COOK post will feature a recipe to help you use those items that you may have left in your pantry at the end of the month. I'll add a linkup so that you can drop your recipe link as well.



For January 2011, the Pantry Challenge Recipe Linkup ingredient is canned tomatoes.

Alrighty - here's my recipe with a little back story....

One of our fave side dishes that uses canned tomatoes (diced tomatoes, to be exact) is an old family recipe that we call Grinny Beans.  Grinny was the name of my husband's grandmother; they always called her Grinny instead of Granny or Grandma because she was always smiling.  She left this world almost seven years ago and we miss her dearly - she was a wonderful person.

She also was a wonderful cook and most of our family gatherings feature some of her recipes but EVERY family gathering includes this recipe for Grinny Beans.  It's nothing fancy but it's one of those simple comfort foods that we all love eating.  My kids love this so much that they've been known to eat a bowl of it cold for breakfast.  ;-)

I wish I had a picture (I thought I'd snapped one a while ago but I can't seem to locate it in my endless files of unorganized digital images - oy!) to show you; I'll just have to make a batch tonight and add the image later. {Update: I did - and my boys were happy to help eat 'em up!}


Here's the recipe:

Grinny Beans

(1) 14 oz Can Kidney Beans undrained (need the liquid)
(1) 14 oz Can Diced Tomatoes undrained (need the liquid)
(3) TBSP Butter or Margarine
(2) TBSP Flour
(2) TSP Salt
(1/4) TSP Pepper
(1) CUP Spaghetti Noodles (uncooked,  broken into 1-2 inch pieces)
(1/4) CUP Ketchup

:: Cook spaghetti; drain and set aside. 

:: In stockpot, melt butter on medium heat; add flour and stir until thickened (you're making a simple roux by doing this). 

::  Add beans with liquid; stir.  Add tomatoes with liquid; stir. 

:: Add salt, pepper, and ketchup to mixture; bring to a boil then turn heat down to medium/medium low (simmer) and stir until thickened. 

:: Add cooked spagehetti noodles; stir into thickened sauce/mixture.  Simmer (2) minutes.

:: Serve & enjoy!

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Want to participate in this month's Pantry Challenge Recipe Linkup? 

Post a Pantry Challenge recipe at your blog that uses Canned Tomatoes as one of it's ingredients then drop your post link in the MckLinky below.  Please include a link to my  COOK | Pantry Challenge Linkup post on January 31, 2011 in your post as well. 

**This linkup will be open until February 27, 2011 so feel free to link up your recipe post later.**

I'm looking forward to seeing all of *your* go-to recipes for canned tomatoes!  ;-)

Weekly Deals Roundup | January 30, 2011 - February 5, 2011

Check out these sites for the best ad matchups around SW Ohio
this week, January 30 - February 5, 2011.





*Kroger (1/31/11 - 02/06/11)*

***NEW Mega Event Sale (includes LOTS of Oscar Mayer & Kraft brands!):
Buy 10 participating items, get an instant $5 off at checkout.***

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Savings Lifestyle)



*Meijer*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Savings Lifestyle)


*Biggs Remke (1/31/11-2/06/11)*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Savings Lifestyle)



*Aldi*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Cincinnati Cents)



*Walgreens*

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


*CVS*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Bargain Briana)



*Rite Aid*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of The Thrifty Mama)
*Target*

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



*Walmart*

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

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Not from my part of SW Ohio but still need matchups for the stores near you?

I encourage you to check The Frugal Map for *your* store. 

The Frugal Map features links to ad matchups from bloggers around the country each week.  If you're a blogger who covers stores in your area that you don't see listed at The Frugal Map, I encourage you to submit your blog to be listed on The Frugal Map.    ;-)


January 30, 2011

What I Saved at The Stores | Week 4 of 2011


I share my weekly savings with the hopes that you might be inspired; this weekly post also serves as a means of keeping me on track with my budget goals.  Thank for stopping in to check it out!

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The latest Kroger Mega Event started on Monday; I grabbed a few of the deals but didn't go all out on my Monday morning trip.  I wanted to wait and see what the unadverised items & matchups would be so I could pull my coupons and plan for next week.  Come Monday 1/31, I will be a-rockin' my Krogering!

Kroger 1/24/11


Spent: $36.17
Saved: $42.47 (54%)

 **Read my weekly Let's Go Krogering! post to see the coupons I used to get these deals!**

Aldi 1/24/11


Spent: $35.96
Saved: $2.00
(The ground beef was marked down $2.00 so the final cost was $1.37/lb!)

Walgreens 01/25/11
(I took advantage of the great RR deal on Maalox/Gas X to use up the last of my $4/1 & $5/1 coupons.  Unfortunately, I forgot to use my $2RRs before they expired on 01/23.  Grrrr...!)


Spent: $4.50 (all cash OOP)
Saved: $23.77 (84%)
Earned: $5.00 RRs

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Weekly Totals:
Spent: $76.63
Saved: $68.24 (48%)

My 4 Week Total:
(Jan 3- Jan 30)
Spent: $330.05
Saved: $376.91 (53%)

I'm over my target budget of $80 per week/$320 per 4 weeks by $10.05 which isn't too bad.  I call it a "target" budget for a reason.  ;-)  My goal for February 2011 would be to hit that $320 per 4 weeks and I'm hoping that the Mega Event at Kroger will help me stockpile some items that will make that number reachable. Fingers crossed!

Still, going over by $10 isn't so bad when you look at the big picture which includes my total savings of $376.91.  To look at it another way, I was able to purchase $706.96 worth of groceries for only $330.05 simply by using coupons, sales, menu planning, and a simple stockpiling mentality.  That's an average of $176.74 worth of groceries per week if I hadn't used the coupons & sales.  

That money saved is money that I can now use to "pay ourselves" by putting it toward our other financial priorities.  For our family, the cash I save on our grocery/household item budget helps us save the cost of parochial school tuition over the course of the year for our three kiddos.  What I save in a year with my mad couponing skillz doesn't totally cover that cost of (3) tuitions (this coming year, 2011-12, will be our first year with all three in our local parish school) but it has made saving for that financial and educational goal far easier for us.  

How you choose to use the money you save through couponing is your perogative; the reason I share what motivates me to clip & ad match & stockpile & save is simply because having a tangible financial goal in place is necessary for long-term success

If you're new to couponing and budgeting, I encourage you to define why you want/need to save money - it will help you keep going during the "slow" weeks.  And please know that your reasons are YOUR reasons - if they motivate you and meet your financial priorities then you should never feel like you're not "doing it right" or like you need to justify your financial priorities to anyone.  ;-)

FYI, I'm tracking my grocery savings in 2011 with this nifty, already-built-and-ready-to-go spreadsheet that my friend Andrea over at Savings Lifestyle has available for anyone to download & use on Google Docs. I highly recommend it! ;-)

If you're a new frugal mom or are just new to this whole couponing gig, feel free to read through the posts linked below 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!

January 29, 2011

Coffee & Clicks | January 29, 2011, Edition #5

Welcome to Coffee & Clicks, my weekly roundup of posts from my Google Reader that caught my eye, that made me think, and that just made me laugh. 

Using Google Reader saves me oodles of time; with a few clicks, I can hop through all my fave blogs to get the critical coupon & deal info I use to save big $$.  But whenever I find myself with a few minutes to spare in the kitchen (which is where my laptop sits on the counter), I also like to scroll through and read for pleasure.

Coffee & Clicks is my way of sharing those interesting posts with you.  If you find yourself with a few minutes of leisure to surf on the weekends while you sip your coffee (or whatever fills your mug), feel free to wander through this list of posts and spend some time reading, reflecting, and relaxing.

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:: I liked this Reader Question about Coupons and Health over at $5 Dinners because it really touches on both the misperception that you can only buy junk food with coupons (while processed foods are a big category of coupons, you can also get a lot of household necessities for free or nearly free with coupons and sales; many produce/organic/fresh meat coupons do exist as well) and the need for each person to define how they will use coupons to stretch their family's budget.

:: I like the Daily Money Tip about Learning Some Stockpiling Rules over at Common Sense with Money. Coupons help you stockpile the high-use items that your family uses/needs but you can certainly adopt a "stockpile mentality" without coupons by waiting for those items to go on sale. Check out some of the other Daily Money Tips from Common Sense with Money right here - good stuff!

:: Have you seen all the brouhaha (in both the MSM and in the blogosphere) about the recent book release, The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother? Get Rich Slowly has an interesting take on it this week, wondering if We're Preparing Our Kids For a Better Financial Future. I'm no Tiger Mother but I certainly do believe in raising kids who know how to work hard in this life. Interesting post!

:: The Simple Dollar talks about The Fundamental Ingredients for Financial Success. Are you willing to work hard, learn new things, and take the blame for your own mistakes? Then you're more than halfway there, peeps!

:: I really appreciated this post about Windfalls over at Frugal Hacks because we all have windfalls in our financial lives. Some are big - like a fat tax refund or an inheritance - but most of those windfalls are of the small variety. Maybe it's a $20 rebate check or maybe it's a $15 savings on a bill this month or maybe it's something as simple as a $10 gift card on your birthday. How we choose to use/designate our windfalls - both big and small - speaks volumes to our financial priorities.

Enjoy your weekend!

January 28, 2011

CLIP | Sunday Coupon Preview 1/30/11 (4 Inserts - 1 SS, 2 RP, 1 PG) + HOT Printables!

It's that time of the week - time to look ahead at the anticipated Sunday insert coupons so you can start planning for next week's store deals.  Be sure to fire up your printer, too, and grab the *hot* printable coupons linked at the bottom of this post if you haven't had time to yet this week. 

Of course, please feel free to leave your feedback as well - if you see some high $$ coupons in the Sunday coupon previews that I miss (especially ones that matchup with an upcoming hot deal) and/or you know of a hot printable coupon that is bound to go fast, please feel free to drop a comment below.  Thanks!

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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, 01/30/11, there will be (4) inserts in the Sunday newpspapers - (1) Smart Source, (2) Red Plum,  and (1) Proctor & Gamble.

Be sure to check the Insert Schedule for 2011 this week if you didn't have a chance to last week; you can look ahead and see which weekends will be jam-packed with LOTS of coupon inserts.

Here are a few coupons expected on 1/30/11 that look good to me:

Smart Source (SS)

$0.55/1 Armour Meatballs

$1.00/1 Bestlife Buttery Spread or Baking Sticks

$0.50/2 Chex Mix *Kroger Mega Event Item!*

$0.50/1 Mt. Olive Pickles or Relish

$1.00/2 Sargento Shredded Cheese

$0.55/1 Tostitos Chips

Red Plum (RP) #1

$2.00/1 Dove Deodorant or Body Wash

BOGO up to $2.99 I Can't Believe It's Not Butter (15 oz tub or sticks)
*Kroger Mega Event Item!*

$1.00/2 Cheez-Its *Kroger Mega Event Item!*

$0.60/1 Lipton Tea Bags

$0.75/2 Skippy Peanut Butter

$0.75/1 Suave Deodorant

Red Plum (RP) #2

$2.00/1 Ecotrin

$1.50/2 Emerald Nuts

$1.00/1 Nestle Toll House Refrig. Cookie Dough *Kroger Mega Event Item!*

P&G

$3.00/1 Tide Stain Release

$0.75/1 Crest Toothpaste

BOGO Buy (1) Olay Bodywash, get (1) Olay Complete Facial Moisturizer FREE up to $6.00

BOGO Buy (1) Olay Bar or Bodywash, get (1) Secret Base Deodorant FREE up to $3.00

To see the full list of coupons in this Sunday's inserts, click here (RP #1 & #2)  and here (SS) and here (PG)

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There were some *hot* printable coupons released this week! Some were so good they were gone within hours! The coupons listed below were still available as of the writing of this post (1/27/11, 8pm EST).

$1.00/1 A-1 Sauce

$1.00/1 Oscar Mayer Carving Board Meats

$0.50/1 Bob Evans Sausage (any)

$0.55/1 Bossa Nova Juice Beverage 10 oz

$1.50/1 Peace Cereal (organic)

$2.00/2 Hillshire Farm Lunchmeats

$1.50/2 Hefty Waverly Cups, Plates, or Napkins

Enjoy your weekend!

January 27, 2011

HOT Deal | FREE Redbox Code, Good 1/27/11 (Expires at MIDNIGHT)


I saw this one in my Google Reader and wanted to share it with all of you so you can grab this deal, too!

Today, 1/27/11, you can use the code MOVIENIGHT at Redbox to get (1) FREE movie rental! 

This code expires at midnight 1/27 so be sure to swing through your local Redbox soon!

Thanks, Savings Lifestyle!

Freebie Roundup!


I'm trying to get back into the habit of sharing a few good freebies I see each week - it's nice to get a little happy surprise in your mailbox every now and again! Plus, many freebies come with coupons for the product as well that are often high-dollar or have a long expiration date. Win-win!

:: Register at Snapily and get a FREE $3 credit - you can use it toward buying one of their cool 2 into 1 photo prints (this actually looks kinda neat!). Click here to get started.*

:: Did you resolve to get into better shape in 2011? Curves is offering a FREE 1 week pass to new members - click here to get yours.*

:: Get a FREE sample of Maximum Slim Coffee when you "like" them on FB right here.*

:: If you didn't grab this deal when it came up last week, you can still request a FREE copy of the new book Dads & Daughters by Dr. James Dobson; the website says they will provide the FREE copies as more become available. Click here to register for yours.

:: Click here to print a $5 off your next in-store purchase at PetSmart; you can print this coupon twice.

:: Click here to print a coupon for a FREE bag of New York Style Snacks (ooooh, I *love* the Sea Salt Bagel Crisps - YUM!).

:: Share a FREE sample box of Quaker Oatmeal Squares with up to 10 friends right here.

Enjoy!

*My personal affiliate links; thanks for supporting this site!

HOT Cincinnati/Dayton Daily Deals on Groupon & Living Social | Boonshoft Museum, Mitchells Salon, Bath & Body Works!!

There are some HOT deals on two of my fave daily deal sites today!

If you can use these deals, be sure to click through and get them  - they will expire soon and may even sell out before then.

Here goes!

Courtesy of Living Social

On Living Social, under "Dayton", you can get (4) admissions and (1) t-shirt to the Boonshoft Museum in Dayton for only $30! I LOVE this museum!! When we lived in Springfield, we were members and I spent many a winter day hauling my bunch of kiddos down I-70  to Dayton to play and learn at Boonshoft. It is truly a fantastic children's museum!!

Details: 1 per person, up to 2 additional as gifts (ie: you have family coming to visit - you can buy one as a gift for them and treat them to a trip to Boonshoft!). Promotional coupon expires May 28, 2011.

This deal will be live through 5:00 AM EST 1/28/11 OR until they hit the deal limit. Click here to get yours.

Groupon has (2) hot deals today you might like:

:: $10 for $20 or $15 for $30 at Bath & Body Works. Click here to get yours. This is a national deal so it should come up for every city as a front page items. (Limit 1 per person; exp 4/27/11.)

:: $70 for $140 Foil Highlight, Haircut & Finished Design at Mitchell's Salon & Day Spa. This deal is under "Cincinnati" so be sure to change your city if your Groupon account is for Dayton. Click here to get yours. (Limit 1 per person; exp 5/29/11.)

FYI: I just tried logging into Groupon and their login page is getting HIGH traffic - I was not able to login. You may need to try later today if the same thing happens to you.

Enjoy!

*This post includes my personal affiliate links - thanks for your support of this site!

January 26, 2011

CREATE | How I Organize My Coupons: Vlog + Tips

I've been workng on a DIY custom-fitted and customized t-shirt during January 2011. This week was supposed to be my finished product but alas, I haven't finished it yet. We had a birthday party here at our home + two basketball games this weekend; I'm remembering why "crafty" things always end up falling to the bottom of my endless TO DO list. ;-)

However, I did take a few minutes to create a quick vlog this week about how I organize my coupons to help answer this emailed question from reader A, a fellow Buckeye:
My question for you is: How do you keep your coupons organized? I currently have a small accordion style coupon holder that is alphabetized. I must have looked so funny last week at Kroger's with my coupons, my printed copy of what you saved at Kroger's and my print out of my Kroger's e-coupons! I had my hands full of so many coupons and papers, I felt totally scattered! I also have a hard time keeping track of expired coupons and just knowing what coupons I have.

Here's my answer via vlog; please forgive the blurriness. I realized I was on the wrong setting after shooting it and decided to just let.it.go. since I'm working on slaying my TypeA tendencies in 2011.  I'm also finding that vlogging has been a great antidote to my vanity - oy! ;-)


Ok, in a nutshell, this is my organizational scheme for couponing:

:: File by insert. I use an expandable file folder to store my coupon inserts. Each Sunday, I write the date on the front of my inserts (ie: 01/23) and file them by date in the back of my file folder; this way, my newest coupons are in the back and my oldest ones are in the front. The very front pocket of my expandable file folder is where I keep my weekly ads. Since my expandable file folder only holds about three months worth of inserts in its files, I can pull the oldest coupons from the front and recycle them/send them to military families as it fills up.

:: I only clip what I need. I scan the early ad matchups for Kroger on Saturday/Sunday to see what the best deals will be. I also check my menu plan, my pantry, and my freezer to see what I'll need for my menus and what items I need to restock for my family (ie: cereal, crackers, steamer veggies, chocolate -- ha! Ok, seriously, chocolate is pretty important...lol!); if I spot any stockpiling opportunities for those items in the weekly sale, I'll clip those coupons as well.

:: I check my coupon box. I know, I know - you're thinking, "Wait - didn't you just say you file by insert?!" Well, yes, I do, but I also have a small plastic shoebox with category envelopes I use to file any clipped coupons I don't use and to file any blinkies, peelies, catalinas, mailer coupons, etc. In fact, when I started couponing at the end of 2007, the coupon box method was my first attempt at coupon organization; I quickly realized that the file by insert method would be a big time saver for me and switched but I kept the coupon box because it still serves an important function as a home for already clipped coupons/found in-store coupons.

:: I write my list. I don't print any lists from the blogs/posts I use as reference - I hate to waste the paper.  I simply scribble a small list with pencil and paper of what I'm planning to get at the store and note which of those items are items for which I have coupons with a little star.

:: I put my list and my clipped coupons in an envelope. That's all I take with me when I go Krogering - an envelope with my list and my clipped coupons for the items I'm getting. If there is a Mega Event going on, I will paperclip those coupons together so I can keep track of the items (because it really stinks to get through the checkout line and realize you bought only 29 - not 30 - participating items!).

:: In store, I shop my list and check my coupons as I go. If there's a Mega Event, I make tally marks on my list as I toss the participating items in my cart so I can keep track of my count.

:: I take a few minutes to organize my coupons before heading to checkout. This is my kiddos fave part of shopping with me: Toy Aisle time! When I've got everything on my list, I head over to the toy aisle (which is always pretty quiet) and let my kiddos (usually just my youngest) look at the toys while I get all my coupons sorted and organized to hand to the cashier. Usually I have a few coupons I won't be using (for items that I didn't find or decided not to get) so I pull those out of the pile. I make sure all my coupons are in the same direction (yes, that TypeA thing again) and facing up to make it as easy as possible for the cashier to scan them.

:: I head to check out. Happy savings time! I should note that I shop on Monday mornings just after dropping my two oldest off at school; my Kroger is not busy at all at that time of day so checking out is fairly quick.

I want to stress that this is what works for me. If you use a binder or a coupon box or some other system that works for you, then stick with it by all means. ;-)

If you're looking for more information on how to organize your coupons, I wrote on this topic a while back; you can read my post 8 Tips to Organize Your Coupons Each Month to learn more.

Thanks so much for the good question, A!

And if you have a question out there, please don't hesitate to ask by email or in a comment. I'll do my best to answer it in a post or a vlog. ;-)

Be sure to check out In 80 Seconds over at Savings Lifestyle this week. Be bold in 2011 - create and add your *own* quick tip vlog to the weekly linkup!

January 25, 2011

HOT Dayton/Cincinnati Deal | $10 for $20 Bowling at JD Legends in Franklin, OH


Groupon's deal of the day for Dayton today is a nice one - $10 for $20 worth of bowling (open lane rental & shoe rental) at JD Legends at 65 Millard Dr in Franklin, Ohio. Expires July 27, 2011.

You can buy up to (2) of these Groupons for JD Legends* - one for yourself and one as a gift.

I jumped on this Groupon* because my oldest son (he's 7) just attended a bowling birthday party at JD Legends and had a blast. Since we are stuck in the dead of winter here in SW Ohio, having something fun to do indoors when it's so cold outside is a good idea for stir crazy kiddos (and moms & dads!).

Click here to get your Groupon* - be sure to select "Dayton" as your city.

Enjoy!

*Yup, that's my affiliate link. Thanks so much for your support of this site!

Let's Go Krogering! | Week of January 24, 2011: Kroger Game Day Greats Mega Event is HERE!


Wondering what's the deal with my weekly Let's Go Krogering! (LGK!) posts?
 Click here for more information.

It is time to get your coupon ON, peeps!  Kroger has brought back the Game Day Greats Mega Event sale for this week and next week: buy 10 participating items, get an instant $5 off at checkout.

There are so many great stockpile items in this event - canned goods, snacks, dishwasher detergent, Goldfish - that I will be buying as soon as I get all my coupons gathered and sorted.  This is one of those Kroger Mega Event sales that really does offer something for everyone.  Enjoy it!

My Kroger Trip, Monday 1/24/11
(My apologies for the blurry photo!)


Spent: $36.17
Saved: $42.47 (54%)

(Please note that Kroger, Cincinnati region allows unlimited coupons and doubles coupons to a maximum *doubled* value of $1.00 - ie: coupons valued $0.50/1 - $0.99/1 will double to $1.00/1.)

Mega Event Items (I bought 30 participating items):

Progresso Soup, $1.38 | $0.88 after Mega Event discount
$1.00/4, GM 01/02
Final price: $0.63 ea

Hunt's Tomatoes, $0.99 | $0.49 after Mega Event discount
$0.45/3, SS 01/23
Final price: $0.19 ea

Rotel Tomatoes, $0.92 | $0.42 after Mega Event discount
$0.30/1, SS 01/23
Final price: FREE + $0.18 overage!

Del Monte Vegetables, $0.99 ea | $0.49 after Mega Event discount
$0.75/3, Kroger loyal customer mailer coupon
Final price: $0.16 ea

Ritz Crackers, $2.49 ea | $1.99 after Mega Event discount
$1.00/2, Kroger loyal customer mailer coupon
Final price: $1.49 ea

Kettle Potato Chips, $1.99 | $1.49 after Mega Event discount
$1.00/1, RP 01/02
Final price: $0.49 ea

Other Coupons:

Sunny D Double Pack, (2) 1 Gallon Bottles, $4.45
$0.25/1, SS 01/16
Final price: $3.95/2 gallons or $1.98 ea

Yoplait Yogurt, $0.50 ea
$0.40/6, GM 01/02
Final price: $0.37 ea

Reese's PBCups/Hershey Bars, $0.50 ea
Buy one RBP Cup, get one Hershey Bar FREE, SS 12/12
Buy one Hershey Dark Chocolate Bar, get one Hershey Bar FREE, SS 01/09
Final price: $0.25 ea

Notable Sale Prices:

Kroger Cheese, 8 oz, $1.50 ea

Kroger Whole Fryer/Roaster Chicken, $0.88/lb

Seedless Red Grapes, $0.99/lb

To see the matchups for this week at Kroger, click here (thanks, Savings Lifestyle). To get the scoop on the unadvertised Mega Event items (and peeps, there are LOTS of them!), click here.

Did you find any unadvertised deals or awesome closeouts at Kroger this week?  Share 'em in a comment below or add your own LGK! post & superstar shopper picture to the linky below.

January 24, 2011

Kroger Update | Unadvertised Mega Event Deals 01/24/11-02/06/11





I was in Kroger this morning, doing my usual beginning of the week Let's Go Krogering! trip, and I saw *several* unadvertised items for the current Kroger Game Day Greats Mega Event that runs from today, 1/24/11-Sunday, 2/6/11

I was able to scribble down most of them on the back of my list - here goes!

Unadvertised Game Day Greats Mega Event Items

Rotel Tomatoes, $0.92 | $0.42 after Mega Event Discount
$0.30/1, SS 01/23
Final price: FREE + $0.18 overage!!

Uncle Ben's Rice, $1.49 | $0.99 after Mega Event Discount
$0.75/1, RP 01/09
$0.75/2, printable here
Final price: FREE - $0.49 ea

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Classic Blue Box, $1.19 | $0.69 after Mega Event Discount

Hormel Chili, $1.29 |  $0.79 after Mega Event Discount
$0.55/2 printable here
Final price: $0.29 ea

Hormel Chili Master Chili, $1.29 | $0.79 after Mega Event Discount
$0.75/1 printable here
Final price: FREE + $0.21 overage!!

Pace Picante Sauce/Salsa, $1.99 | $1.49 after Mega Event Discount
$0.50/2, SS 12/05
Final price: $0.99 ea

Oreos (mmm!), $2.97 | $2.47 after Mega Event Discount

French's Mustard (lots of varieties), $1.99 | $1.49 after Mega Event Discount
$0.50/1 Spicy Brown, Honey, Honey Dijon, or Horseradish, SS 01/23
$0.30/1 Classic Yellow, SS 01/23
$0.50/1 Any, printable here
Final price: $0.49-$0.89 ea

Cheez-Its (WOOT!), $2.76 | $2.26 after Mega Event Discount

Ken's Salad Dressing, $1.99 | $1.49 after Mega Event Discount
$1.00/1, SS 01/09
Final price: $0.49 ea

Hebrew National Franks, $2.99 | $2.49 after Mega Event Discount

Oscar Mayer Angus/Oscar Mayer Beef Franks, $3.69 | $3.19 after Mega Event Discount

Oscar Mayer Deli Select Lunchmeat, $3.29 | $2.79 after Mega Event Discount

Starbucks Coffee (bagged), $6.99 | $6.49 after Mega Event Discount
$1.00/1, S 11/21
Final price: $5.49 ea

Brummel & Brown Spread, $1.79 | $1.29 after Mega Event Discount

I Can't Believe It's Not Butter Spread, $1.79 | $1.29 after Mega Event Discount

I Can't Believe It's Not Butter Sticks, $1.79 | $1.29 after Mega Event Discount

Trop50 Juice, $2.99 | $2.49 after Mega Event Discount
$1.00/2, RP 01/02
Final price: $1.99 ea

Tropicana Orange Juice, $2.99 | $2.49 after mega Event Discount

Nestle Tollhouse Cookie Dough (block & roll), $2.79 | $2.29 after Mega Event Discount
$1.00/1 printable here and here
Final price: $1.29 ea

O-Cello Sponges (variety of types), $2.00-$2.50 | $1.50-$2.00 after Mega Event Discount

I'm sure there are even more unadvertised Mega Event items - these are simply the ones I spotted while racing my cart down the aisles.  ;-)

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*Update 01/24/11, 1:18 pm EST*

Check out this list of Unadvertised Kroger Mega Event Items courtesy of Stockpiling Moms!  Melissa found even more than I did - woohoo!

Be sure to check the full ad matchup for this week at Kroger at Savings Lifestyle, as well for the advertised Mega Event matchups and the remaining weekly matchups!

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I did check the Customer Service desk for the flyer/card with the full list of participating items and they did NOT yet have it as of early Monday morning, which is what I expected to hear.  In my experience, the full list/flyer isn't usually available from the CS desk until a day or two into the sale. 

Did you find any other unadvertised participating items?  Share what you know in a comment below and help out your fellow frugalistas!  ;-)

COOK | Upcoming Pantry Challenge Recipe LINK UP on Monday, 01/31/11

One of the biggest ways to save money on your grocery bill is to stockpile shop (with our without coupons - obviously, I advocate for doing so *with* coupons, LOL!); if you can identify the items that your family uses week in and week out and then buy a large quantity of those items when they are at their lowest price (again, coupons help lower that price!), you will save money over time.  The more you have on hand in your stockpile, the less you'll need to buy - instead, you simply learn to "shop your stockpile" first before planning your store trips for the coming week.

This does mean that sometimes your stockpile overfloweth  - the end of the month comes and you realize that you've got an abundance of a certain one or certain few items.  If you can share from your stockpile (ie: friends, family, or your local food bank), great! Let your mad couponing skillz be a blessing to others.  ;-)

You can also plan a "pantry challenge" week for the end of the month; simply take stock of your pantry and/or freezer as the last week of the month comes to a close and plan a menu based on what you have on hand.  This can be a great way to stretch your grocery budget for the month; with a little creativity, you'll likely find that you only need perishable items and a few other deals at the stores that week. 

But the creativity part of menu planning from your pantry and/or freezer can be, well...a challenge!

As I simplified my posting schedule for 2011, I decided that for my final COOK post of the month (on the final Monday of the month), it would be fun  - and hopefully helpful to you  - to host a Pantry Challenge Recipe Linkup


For January 2011, the Pantry Challenge Recipe Linkup will be live on Monday, January 31, 2011.  The ingredient theme for 01/31/11 will be.....

{drumroll please}

Canned Tomatoes

{Can you guess what I have an abundance of in my pantry?!}

How can you participate?

--> Post a Pantry Challenge recipe at your blog that uses Canned Tomatoes as one of it's ingredients then drop your post link in the MckLinky that will be available on my COOK | Pantry Challenge Linkup post on January 31, 2011.

I'll share the recipe for one of my family's fave go-to side dishes that uses canned (diced) tomatoes, too.

Looking for recipe inspiration?  Check out some of my fave recipe databases & blogs:

:: All Recipes

:: Recipe Zaar

:: $5 Dinners

:: Once a Month Mom

:: Carrie's Cooking

I'm looking forward to seeing all of *your* go-to recipes for canned tomatoes!  ;-)

January 23, 2011

Weekly Deals Roundup | 01/23/11 - 01/29/11

Looking for the matchups for this week?

Check out these sites for the best matchups around SW Ohio this week, January 23 - January 29, 2011.

*Kroger (1/24/11 - 1/30/11)*

***NEW Mega Event Sale (includes LOTS of Oscar Mayer & Kraft brands!):
Buy 10 participating items, get an instant $5 off at checkout.***

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Savings Lifestyle)

*Meijer*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Savings Lifestyle)

*Biggs Remke (1/24/11-1/30/11)*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Savings Lifestyle)

*Aldi*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Cincinnati Cents)

*Walgreens*

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

*CVS*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Bargain Briana)

*Rite Aid*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of The Thrifty Mama)

*Target*

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

*Walmart*

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

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Not from my part of SW Ohio but still need matchups for the stores near you?

I encourage you to check The Frugal Map for *your* store. 

The Frugal Map features links to ad matchups from bloggers around the country each week.  If you're a blogger who covers stores in your area that you don't see listed at The Frugal Map, I encourage you to submit your blog to be listed on The Frugal Map.    ;-)


What I Saved at the Stores | Week 3 of 2011


I share my weekly savings with the hopes that you might be inspired; this weekly post also serves as a means of keeping me on track with my budget goals.  Thank for stopping in to check it out!

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I was able to knock out most of my shopping on Monday with my daughter since both my hubs and my kiddos had MLK Jr Day off. My girl is almost ten (!) and she's very good with numbers so she's starting to  "get" how the couponing gig works - it's all about the math.

Kroger 1/17/11

Spent: $48.53
Saved: $90.76 (65%)

 **Read my weekly Let's Go Krogering! post to see the coupons I used to get these deals!**

Aldi 1/17/11


Spent: $22.372
Saved: $0.00
(Gala Apples 3lbs/$1.99 - that's $0.67/lb!)

Save A Lot 1/17/10
(I saw that Save A Lot had PP Peanut Butter for $1.50 ea; since I had $0.50/1 coupons
 *and* since my PB stockpile was empty, I stopped by to grab some.)


Spent: $4.59
Saved: $1.50 (25%)

Kroger 1/19/11
(With snow on the way, I wanted to be sure we had milk for the weekend; I found milk
 that exp. 1/26 on Mgr Special for $1.19 ea  - STOCK up!  I also used some BOGO coupons to get Hershey Bars to use in making chocolate chunk cookies during our snow days. FYI: the OR popcorn has (2) FREE Redbox codes inside -- be sure to check your stores for the specially marked packages.)

Spent: $6.05
Saved: $4.66 (43%)
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Weekly Totals:
Spent: $81.32
Saved: $100.98 (55%)

I'm just about on budget this week ($80/week) and with the upcoming Kroger Mega Event that starts Monday, I'm hopeful that I'll be able to come in a bit budget for January.  I also have some RRs (Walgreens) and ECBs (CVS) that I need to use before they expire this week.

FYI, I'm tracking my grocery savings in 2011 with this nifty, already-built-and-ready-to-go spreadsheet that my friend Andrea over at Savings Lifestyle has available for anyone to download & use on Google Docs. I highly recommend it! ;-)

If you're a new frugal mom or are just new to this whole couponing gig, feel free to read through the posts linked below 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.  ;-)  And to my IRL friends who have recently asked for a little one-on-one coupon training, keep asking me questions!  I'm so glad that you're excited about learning the ropes!

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!

January 22, 2011

Coffee & Clicks | January 22, 2011, Edition #4

Welcome to Coffee & Clicks, my weekly roundup of posts from my Google Reader that caught my eye, that made me think, and that just made me laugh. 

Using Google Reader saves me oodles of time; with a few clicks, I can hop through all my fave blogs to get the critical coupon & deal info I use to save big $$.  But whenever I find myself with a few minutes to spare in the kitchen (which is where my laptop sits on the counter), I also like to scroll through and read for pleasure.

Coffee & Clicks is my way of sharing those interesting posts with you.  If you find yourself with a few minutes of leisure to surf on the weekends while you sip your coffee (or whatever fills your mug), feel free to wander through this list of posts and spend some time reading, reflecting, and relaxing.

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:: This post about how Personal Finance Books Are Keeping You Poor over at Five Cent Nickel was absolutely right on the money, imho (I know, I know - what a pun!).  All humor aside, Neale Frankle gets to the core of the issue - the negative feedback behavior cycle that you simply must break free from if you're going to make any type of life-altering change in your life.   Creating real changes in your life takes old-fashioned (and sometimes painful) hard work.

:: My friend Carrie over at Carrie's Cooking shared her grocery trip this week; I loved her line, "Some of my friends that I know outside of the world of the web have learned that I feed my family of four with a budget of $60 a week," only because I can imagine she gets the same reaction I get when I tell people my budget for our family of five is $80 a week - looks of utter disbelief.  ;-)  All it takes is a little menu planning, some blog hopping, and a fistful of coupons....!

:: Make life's lemons into lemonade...or use those lemons in over 55 Green Uses around the house as listed by Coupon Sherpa.  Who knew?!

:: I loved this post from Mom Advice about The Power of Living Small and not just because I want Amy's office.  Smaller can be better - it's all about blooming where you're planted.  ;-) 

:: Last, if you can spare a moment of prayer, please hop over and read about E, a friend of Jenny at Mommin' It Up, who has faced both a cancer diagnosis this week as well as surgery; E is being prayed for by folks all over the country thanks to the power of social media. 

Enjoy your weekend!

January 21, 2011

CLIP | Sunday Coupon Preview 1/23/11 (2 Inserts) + HOT Printables!

It's that time of the week - time to look ahead at the anticipated Sunday insert coupons so you can start planning for next week's store deals.  Be sure to fire up your printer, too, and grab the *hot* printable coupons linked at the bottom of this post if you haven't had time to yet this week. 

Of course, please feel free to leave your feedback as well - if you see some high $$ coupons in the Sunday coupon previews that I miss (especially ones that matchup with an upcoming hot deal) and/or you know of a hot printable coupon that is bound to go fast, please feel free to drop a comment below.  Thanks!

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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, 01/23/11, there will be (2) inserts in the Sunday newpspapers - (1) Smart Source & (1) Red Plum

Be sure to check the Insert Schedule for 2011 this week if you didn't have a chance to last week; you can look ahead and see which weekends will be jam-packed with LOTS of coupon inserts.

Here are a few coupons expected on 1/23/11 that look good to me:

Smart Source (SS)

$0.35/1 Comet Cleanser or Comet Spray (Walgreens sometimes has the cleanser for $0.99)

$0.75/1 Finish Powerball or Gelpack

Tons of French's condiment coupons

$0.45/3 Hunts Canned Tomatoes (**Part of upcoming Kroger Mega Event 1/24/11!**)

$1.00/1 Ronzoni Garden Delight

$0.50/3 Rosarita Refried Beans

Red Plum (RP)

$1.00/2 Ballpark products

$0.50/1 Carolina River Rice

$0.50/1 Minute Rice product

$4.00/1 Nutro Natural Choice Dry Dog Food

FREE 1 package Snickers Peanut Butter Squared, 1.78 oz, up to $0.99

To see the full list of coupons in this Sunday's inserts, click here  and here.

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There were some *hot* printable coupons released this week! Some were so good they were gone within hours! The coupons listed below were still available as of the writing of this post (1/21/11, 7 a EST).

$2.00/2 8 or more Scott Extra Soft Bath Tissue AND 4 or more Scott Towels

$0.55/1 Land O Lakes Fresh Taste Buttery Spread (This often goes on sale for $1.00 at Kroger so this coupon doubled would make it free.)

$3.00/1 Any Similac Infant Forumula

$0.55/1 Vlasic Pickles

$0.75/1 Shake & Bake

BOGO Vitamin Water, 20 oz

$1.00/1 Kraft Singles (Thanks, Common Sense with Money)

$1.00/1 Cracker Barrel Cheese Cubes (Thanks, Stretching A Buck)

Enjoy your weekend!

January 20, 2011

Upcoming Kroger Mega Event 01/24/11 - 01/30/11 | Kraft, Oscar Mayer Products!!



Attention Kroger shoppers! Time to get your coupons ready for next week because Kroger will be running a new Mega Event sale Monday, 01/24/11 - Sunday, 01/30/11. WOOT!

This Mega Event features lots of Oscar Mayer & Kraft brand items so there are LOTS of stockpiling opportunities. Yay!

To get a look at the early ad matchup, click here (thanks so much, Stockpiling Moms!).

These Mega Events *usually* run for (2) weeks, so I would expect that this sale will repeat the week of 01/31/11-02/6/11 as well.  You'll be able to confirm this once you're in store come Monday, 1/24/11 - just check the little Mega Event tags under the participating products for the sale end date.

Also, be sure to check in store for the little note card/index card flier for this Mega Event - it will have the *full* list of participating products on it. Those unadvertised items and their coupon matchups will start popping up on the blogs come Monday so be sure to check your Google Reader for sale updates, too.

Remember, these Mega Event sales offer excellent stockpiling opportunities if you have additional coupons; be sure to order additional coupons (this is my fave coupon clipping service) soon so you'll get the coupons you need.

Oh Kroger - I big fat puffy {heart} all the many ways you help me save money!!

Have fun getting more deals, my couponista friends!! ;-)

Freebie Roundup!


I'm trying to get back into the habit of sharing a few good freebies I see each week - it's nice to get a little happy surprise in your mailbox every now and again! Plus, many freebies come with coupons for the product as well that are often high-dollar or have a long expiration date. Win-win!

:: Request a FREE sample of Covergirl NatureLuxe Foundation from Walmart right here.

:: Register your child for Club BK (Burger King) and get a coupon for a FREE BK kids meal on their birthday - click here to get started.

:: Another FREE sample from Walmart - click here to get a FREE sample of Purina Beneful IncrediBites for your favorite Fido.  ;-)

:: Request a FREE sample of Maggi Soup right here.

:: Planning a wedding? Get a FREE 1 year subscription to Brideal Guide Magazine right here.

Enjoy!

January 19, 2011

HOT Deal | $20 Amazon GC for $10 from Living Social TODAY Only 1/19/11


If you haven't seen this deal yet today as you hop-skip through your Google Reader/emails, you'll want to jump on it now!

Today, 1/19/11, Living Social* (a daily deal site much like Groupon) is offering a $20 Amazon.com GC for only $10 - that's a savings of 50%!

One of my fave ways to save with Amazon GCs is by checking out the deals available on Amazon Subscribe & Save*. There are many dry goods, pantry items, boxed/canned foods, and drugstore items that you can purchase via Amazon Subscribe & Save that are the same price or cheaper than what you would pay in-store. And there are also Amazon Coupons* available for some of those Subscribe & Save items meaning your potential for big savings increases!

Click here to get the $20 Amazon Gift Card for $10 from Living Social* and click soon - I imagine this will sell out before they reach end of day.

(Thanks for the heads up, Savings Lifestyle!)

*Yup, those are my personal affiliate links. Thanks for your support!