February 25, 2011

CLIP | Sunday Coupon Preview 2/27/11 (2 Inserts - SS & 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, 02/27/11, there will be (2) inserts in the Sunday newspapers - (1) Smart Source & (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 2/27/11 that look good to me:

Smart Source (SS)

$0.55/1 Tostitos Artisan Recipe Tortilla Chips (these are very YUM!)

$3.50/1 Huggies Snug & Dry Diapers 60+ ct

$1.00/1 BestLife Buttery Spread or Baking Sticks

$0.75/1 Colgate Toothpaste 4 oz

$2.00/1 Caribou Coffee 12 oz bag

$4.00/1 Biotrue Multipurpose Contact Lens Solution 2pk

$5.00/1 Claritin 20+ ct

Proctor & Gamble (PG)

$1.00/1 Downy Liquid or Sheets

$2.00/1 Pampers Diapers or Training Pants

$0.75/1 Crest Toothpaste 4 oz

$0.50/1 Kids Crest Toothpaste

$0.55/1 Satin Care Shave Gel

Oodles of "Buy This, Get That FREE" coupons for PG brand items

To see the full list of coupons in this Sunday's inserts, click 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 (2/25/11, 11:26 am EST)

$0.50/1 Folgers 3 oz or larger

$0.75/1 Jello Pudding or Gelatin 6 pk

$1.00/1 Pillsbury Easy Frost No Fuss Frosting

$1.00/1 Blue Bunny Ice Cream Novelty Carton

$0.50/1 Cake Mate Numeral Birthday Candle

BOGO Metromint Bottled Water

$0.55/2 Dozen Eggs

FREE (1) 2 Liter of Pepsi Max when you buy (1) Doritos 11.5 oz or larger

Enjoy your weekend!

February 22, 2011

Let's Go Krogering! | Week of February 21, 2011 {Daytona Mega Event Continues + 10/$10 Sale Begins!}


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

This week at Kroger, the Daytona Mega Event continues (save $3.00 when you buy 10 items now AND get a $3.00 catalina off your next order to save later); this sale offers some great stockpiling opportunities since the $3.00 catalina you earn at checkout is rolling, meaning you can use the $3.00 catalinas on another transaction that includes Daytona Mega Event items.  Yesterday, I used the (2) $3.00 catalinas I earned last week to further lower my total out of pocket.  WOOT!

Like I mentioned last week, remember to save those $3.00 catalinas you get at checkout!  I know, I know, I'm preaching to the couponing choir, but  if you don't have a coupon organization system in place yet (see some ideas on organizing your coupons here), you may simply misplace those valuable catalinas and miss out on the chance to save in the future. 

My advice to those of you who are still getting organized: tuck those $3.00 catalinas in your wallet so that you can use them on your next trip to Kroger.  They expire in 2 weeks so be sure to use them! 

Onto the deals!

My Kroger Trip, Monday 2/21/11
(My Daytona Mega Event items are on the RIGHT side.)


Spent: $36.50
Saved: $73.74 (66%)
Earned: $6.00 in OYNO Catalinas
{(2) $3.00 Daytona Mega Event}

(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 20 participating items):

Breyer's Ice Cream, $2.99 ea | $2.69 after Mega Event discount
(mmm....Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip!!)

Campbell's Chunky Soup, $1.59 ea | $1.29 after Mega Event discount
$1.00/2, SS 02/06
Final price: $0.79 ea

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese 5 pk, $3.49 ea  | $3.19 after Mega Event discount
$1.00/1 printable here
Final price: $0.46 ea

Betty Crocker Cookie Mix, $1.99 ea | $1.69 after Mega Event discount
$0.40/1, GM 02/13
$0.40/1 printable here and here
Final price: $0.89 ea

Betty Crocker Supreme Brownie Mix, $1.99 ea | $1.69 after Mega Event discount
$0.50/1, GM 02/13
Final price: $0.69 ea

Golden Grahams Bars, Chex Mix Bars, or Honey Nut Cheerio Milk & Cereal Bars, $1.99 ea | $1.69 after Mega Event discount
$0.50/1, SS 01/30
Final price: $0.69 ea

Hefty One Zip Bags, $1.49 ea | $1.19 after Mega Event discount
$1.00/2, RP 02/20
Final price: $0.69 ea

Reynolds Foil, $2.99 ea | $2.69 after Mega Event discount
$0.75/1, SS 01/30
Final price: $1.69 ea

Ragu Pasta Sauce, $1.74 ea | $1.44 after Mega Event discount
$0.75/2, RP 01/30
Final price: $0.94 ea

Other Coupons:

Kroger Eggs, 1 dozen, $1.00 ea
$0.55/2 dozen eggs, printable here
Final price: $0.50 ea

Pasta Roni, $1.39 ea
$1.00/2 Pasta Roni wyb Pork, peelie found on Mgr Special pork chops I purchased for $0.89/lb
Final price: $0.89 ea

Knorr Rice Mix Pouches, $1.00 ea
$0.50/2, RP 01/30
Final price: $0.50 ea

Hillshire Farm Deli Select Lunchmeat, $3.00 ea
$0.35/1, RP 02/13
Final price: $2.30 ea

Hunts Pudding 4 pk, $1.00 ea
$0.60/3, SS 01/02
Final price: 3/$2.00 or $0.67 ea

Dannon Danimals & Coolision Yogurt, $1.88 ea
$0.55/1 peelies found on product (they are green peelies and there were TONS of them!)
Final price: $0.88 ea

Land O Lakes Fresh Buttery Spread, $1.00 ea
$0.55/1 printable here
Final price: FREE!

Voskos Greek Yogurt Cups (found in Organic section), $1.00 ea
$0.75/1 printable here
$0.75/1 blinkie I found in front of product in store yesterday {!!}
Final price: FREE!

Notable Sale Prices & Manager Specials:

Kroger Whole Fryer Chicken, $0.88/lb

Gala Apples, 3 lb bag, $2.50

Mgr Special: 1/2 Gallon Milk, $1.00

Mgr Special: Boneless Pork Chops, $0.89/lb

To see the matchups for this week at Kroger, click here (thanks, Savings Lifestyle).

Enjoy your Krogering this week!  ;-)

Swamped!

My basement 2/21/11, 10 pm, made messier by 1 inch of water.  OY!

We had rain here all day yesterday in my corner of SW Ohio.

Lots of rain.

And that rain came on the heels of some very spring-like weather last week (we had a couple of days where the temperature hit 65), meaning all of the snow and ice that had been hanging around since mid-December melted away into puddles of standing water.

Snow melt + buckets of rain = too much work for our primary sump pump which ended up failing; we had about 1 inch of water in our unfinished basement last night.

Thankfully, we caught it before we went to bed so we were able to act quickly.  We now have the situation under control thanks to the fast response from our insurance company, USAA.  We had a water mitigation team at our house at 2 am!  FYI: if you have a basement with a sump pump/well, you may want to make sure you have water backup/sump pump failure covered in your policy. 

For our homeowners policy with USAA, sump pump failure/water backup/water mitigation is NOT covered under the "standard" policy.  We have a separate "rider" or "endorsement" that we pay for as an add-on to our standard policy to cover sump pump failure/water backup/water mitigation.  Believe me, it is WELL worth it! 

We had a similar situation happen two houses ago (Illinois 2003)  We had it covered with a separate rider/endorsement as I mentioned above; at the time of the claim, we paid the deductible of $500.  The total cost to the insurance company for the water mitigation for 1 inch of water - no property loss, just clean up - on our 1/2 finished basement (probably about 500 sq feet finished and the rest - about 700 sq ft unfinished) was about $5000! 

My advice if you're a homeowner? 

If you have a basement with a sump pump - whether it's a finished or unfinished basement - be sure to check your home owner's policy and find out what your coverage is (or isn't!) in case of a sump pump failure/water mitigation.  It's worth the extra few bucks a year to add that coverage to your policy!

I didn't get much sleep at all last night; I am tired and I have lots of work ahead of me until the mess is finally done. 

I'm going to post my Let's Go Krogering! post for you later today because I found some stellar deals and I want to make sure you grab 'em, too.  But after that post is live, I'll be focused on the house and basement and on getting some sleep for the rest of the week.  ;-)

Stay dry, duckies!!

February 21, 2011

Menu Plan Monday | Week of February 21-27, 2011 {or, Why Yes, I Have Been Flying By the Seat of My Pants!}


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 stockpile shop the weekly sales with coupons; my goal is to get the best deals on items for my monthly menu plan for the lowest cost.  For more Q&A (because you're just dying to know, right?), click here.

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I started out February with a menu plan for the month; a scribbled and not-so-neat menu plan but a menu plan nonetheless!

February of 2011 has had me scrambling, however; we've had several changes to our family's weekly schedule and I've been juggling some additional responsibilities as well.

The net result: while I've used my menu plan for the month, I've also been switching things up week by week as our schedule (and my time) necessitates. My menu plan has served as a good reference for me this month even though I haven't followed it to the letter.

Here's what I've got planned for our dinners this week:

Monday

Quick & Easy Chicken Noodle Soup + Homemade Bread Rolls
(I've got some sick kiddos here this holiday weekend!)

Tuesday

Taco Night!

Wednesday

Spaghetti & Meatballs

Thursday

Breakfast for dinner

Friday

Homemade Pizza

Saturday

Free night

Sunday

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Steamed Veggies

Looking for menu planning inspiration? Be sure to check out all the menu plans linked up at OrgJunkie's Menu Plan Monday!

February 20, 2011

HOT Deal | Kroger & Affiliates: FREE $5 eCoupon When You Enter the Pillsbury Bake-Off


I saw this dealio in my Google Reader and knew I had to share it with you right away!

Enter the Pillsbury Bake Off contest here by 04/18/11 and you can get a $5.00 eCoupon loaded to your Kroger or Kroger-affiliated store card!  

This is a HUGE high dollar eCoupon and I wouldn't be surprised if the response they get to this offer is overwhelming

My advice? Go enter now!!

Many thanks to Money Saving Mom for posting this deal!

Weekly Deals Roundup | February 20, 2011 - February 26, 2011

Check out these sites for the best ad matchups around SW Ohio
this week, February 20 - February 26, 2011.





*Kroger (02/21/11 - 02/27/11)*

***Daytona Mega Event Sale - buy 10 participating items, get $3 off at checkout AND get a $3 catalina OYNO (off your next order).   NEW this week - 10/$10 Sale as well!!***

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Savings Lifestyle)



*Meijer*

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 Cincinnati Cents)



*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.    ;-)


February 19, 2011

Kroger | HOT Upcoming FREE w/Coupon Deals Week of 2/21/11-2/27/11


I was getting my weekly store deals post ready to for for tomorrow and I noticed several FREE with coupon dealios at Kroger for the coming week.

These deals are in addition to the current Daytona Mega Event sale that continues next week: buy 10 products, get $3 off at checkout and get a $3 catalina OYNO.

It looks like it will be yet another great week to save at Kroger!

Colgate Toothpaste, $0.98 ea
$0.75/1 or $1.00/1, SS 01/30
$0.50/1, SS 02/13
Final price: FREE!
*(This is a great food pantry donation item!)*

Voskos Greek Yogurt, $1.00 ea
$1.00/1 printable via FB here
$0.75/1 printable here
Final price: FREE!

Land O Lakes Margarine or Spread, 8.26 oz, $1.00 ea
$0.50/1 Spreadable Butter, SS 02/06
$0.55/1 Buttery Spread printable here
Final price: FREE!

Mentos Gum 1.06 oz, $1.00
$0.50/1 any Mentos, SS 02/06
Final price: FREE!

Looking for the rest of the coming matchups at Kroger for next week - including the full Daytona Mega Event matchups?

Be sure to check out the comprehensive post for Kroger 02/21-02/27 at Savings Lifestyle right here.

Coffee & Clicks | February 19, 2011, Edition #7

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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:: Over at Bible Money Matters, this post about Financial Advice That I Wish I Had Listened to When I Was Younger resonated with me. Who wouldn't love to have a time machine to go back in time and create better money habits in their youth?

:: Did you see the highlights of the Finances of the Average American over at Free Money Finance? The statistics are interesting and a bit disheartening. We need to become a nation of savers  - not just consumers - once again.

:: The Simple Dollar takes on the statement you've likely heard before (I know I have!): I Don't Have Time to Be Frugal! It's a good read - don't forget to scroll through the comments, too; lots of good discussions popped up there as well.

:: OMGosh - I just learned to knit (I know - can you believe it?!) and these Knitted Headbands over at Mom Advice have me thinking that I might just have my first "real" project idea. My knitting up until this point has been just practice knitting which is very therapeutic and good for learning but certainly not terribly productive. ;-)

Enjoy your weekend!

February 18, 2011

CLIP | Sunday Coupon Preview 2/20/11 (1 Insert - RP) + 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, 02/20/11, there will be (1) insert in the Sunday newspapers - (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 2/20/11 that look good to me:

Red Plum (RP)

$0.60/1 Bertolli Pasta Sauce

$2.00/1 Dial Nutriskin Lotion

$1.00/2 Uncle Ben's Ready Rice

$1.00/2 Hefty One Zip Bags

To see the full list of coupons in this Sunday's inserts, click 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 (2/18/11, 9:55 pm EST)

$1.00/1 Simply Orange Juice

$1.00/1 5 pk of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese

$0.75/1 Kraft Miracle Whip

$1.00/2 Ritz Crackers

$1.00/1 Maxwell House Coffee 34.5 oz

$1.00/2 Oreo Cookies

$1.00/2 Oscar Mayer Deli Creations Sandwiches

$1.00/1 Weight Watchers Frozen Novelties

Enjoy your weekend!

February 17, 2011

Freebie Roundup {Atkins Bars, Aunt Jemima Pancakes, $39 of P&G Coupons!}


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 $39 worth of coupons from P&G for FREE right here. WOOT - I love these!

:: Have you checked out House Party yet? I love being able to share new products with my friends and family for FREE while hosting a get-together without killing my budget. Right now, you can apply to host a DiGiorno Pizza and Hoops Party, a Kraft Sandwich Makeover Party, or a Greenworks New to You Party. Check out House Party right here.

:: Request (3) FREE Atkins Bars (snack bars) right here. (Thanks, Money Saving Mom!)

:: Request a FREE Beech-Nut Stage 4 Toddler Welcome Kit right here. (Thanks, Deal Seeking Mom!)

:: "Like" Aunt Jemima on FB right here and you can get a coupon for a FREE box of Aunt Jemima Pancakes! (Thanks, Savings Lifestyle!)

Enjoy!

February 15, 2011

Let's Go Krogering! | Week of February 14, 2011 (Daytona Mega Event Begins - Save $3 Now, Save $3 Later!)


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

Well, hello there, my lovely couponista friends! 

I've been playing hooky again around here, haven't I?  ;-)

Yup, real life has been keeping me hopping over the last week or so; rather than trying to be Super Woman, I stepped away from the digiworld of blogging and social media.   It was time well spent.

But even when I'm not actively writing and blogging here, I am still reading blog posts and deal updates in my Google Reader from around the blogosphere and I am still clipping my q's and getting the deals.  While I might take a break from blogging, my frugal ways are a regular part of my life no matter what. 

This week at Kroger, the Daytona Mega Event returns (I remember last year - there was an awesome Purex detergent catalina deal in the 2010 version of this sale that matched up beautifully) but with a new twist that we've not yet seen in a Kroger Mega Event sale: save $3.00 when you buy 10 items now AND get a $3.00 catalina off your next order to save later.

The key to remember with this change is to save those $3.00 catalinas you get at checkout!  I know, I know, I'm preaching to the couponing choir, but  if you don't have a coupon organization system in place yet (see some ideas on organizing your coupons here), you may simply misplace those valuable catalinas and miss out on the chance to save in the future. 

My advice to those of you who are still getting organized: tuck those $3.00 catalinas in your wallet so that you can use them on your next trip to Kroger.  They expire in 2 weeks so be sure to use them! 

Onto the deals!

My Kroger Trip, Monday 2/14/11
(My Daytona Mega Event items are on the LEFT side.)


Spent: $54.15
Saved: $47.57 (46%)
Earned: $8.00 in OYNO Catalinas
{(2) $3.00 Daytona Mega Event + (1) $2.00 for buying (3) Coffee-Mate creamers}

(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 20 participating items):

Totino's Pizza Rolls, $1.25 | $0.95 after Mega Event discount
$0.40/2, SS 01/30
Final price: $0.55 ea

Chef Boyardee Ravioli, $0.99 ea  | $0.69 after Mega Event discount
$0.35/3, SS 01/02
Final price: $0.46 ea

Betty Crocker Cookie Mix, $1.99 ea | $1.69 after Mega Event discount
$0.40/1, GM 02/13
Final price: $0.89 ea

Betty Crocker Supreme Brownie Mix, $1.99 ea | $1.69 after Mega Event discount
$0.50/1, GM 02/13
Final price: $0.69 ea

Sprite Zero 2 Liter, $1.29 ea | $0.99 after Mega Event discount
$0.50/1, Coke Zero or Sprite Zero 2 Ltr, Kroger catalina I received a month ago
Final price: FREE!

Coffee Mate 16 oz, $2.99 ea | $2.69 after Mega Event discount
FREE Coffee Mate coupon, received from hosting a Free Flavor Friday C-M house party
$0.75/2, Kroger catalina I received about 3 weeks ago
$1.00/2, RP 01/30
Final price: FREE-$2.19 ea

Country Crock 45 oz, $2.49 ea | $2.19 after Mega Event discount
$0.50/1, Kroger catalina I received last week
$0.40/1 printable here
Final price: $1.19-$1.39 ea

Ragu Pasta Sauce, $1.74 ea | $1.44 after Mega Event discount
$0.75/2, RP 01/30
Final price: $0.94 ea

Other Coupons:

Hershey Dark Bars, $0.50 ea
Buy one Hershey Dark Chocolate Bar, get one Hershey Bar FREE, SS 01/09
Final price: $0.25 ea

Hunts Pudding 4 pk, $1.00 ea
FREE when you buy (4) Chef Boyardee Pasta, tearpad found in-store a few weeks ago
Final price: FREE!

Dannon Danimals & Coolision Yogurt, $1.88 ea
$0.55/1 peelies found on product (they are green peelies and there were TONS of them!)
Final price: $0.88 ea

Sunny D, $1.99 ea
$0.25/1, SS 01/16
Final price: $1.49

Kroger Deluxe Ice Cream, $2.50 ea
$0.40/1, Kroger My Magazine mailer coupon
Final price: $2.10 ea

I Can't Believe It's Not Butter Sticks, $2.19 ea
Buy1Get1FREE coupon,  RP 01/30 (I ordered these from this coupon clipping service)
Final price: $1.10 ea wyb (2)

No Yolks Egg Noodles, $1.99 ea
$0.50/1, SS 10/10 (doesn't expire until 06/30/11!)
Final price: $0.99 ea

Notable Sale Prices:

Kroger Value Grapefruit, 5 lb bag, $2.50 ea

Gala Apples, 3 lb bag, $2.50

To see the matchups for this week at Kroger, click here (thanks, Savings Lifestyle).

Enjoy your Krogering this week!  ;-)

February 9, 2011

Boundless Energy, or Why I've Slacked On Blogging This Week

(I only wish I had that much energy!)


:: Debugged two of our three computers; the last one still waits for me to find a spare hour or two to manually scrub the virus from the hard drive.  Oh what fun waits for me!!

:: Counted, tallied, and counted again the cookie orders for my Girl Scout Troop.  What a way to get my latent OCD tendencies all fired up.  ;-) Count-recount-count-recount!!

:: Met with one of my kiddos teachers - good meeting and I'm thankful that all my prayers were not in vain.  I mostly prayed for myself, peeps; sometimes I'm too quick with words for my own good.

:: Took two rambunctious boys (who happen to be my boys!) swimming.

:: Dropped the little guy at preschool, went to Bible Study with my SFDS momtourage {girls, thanks for lifting me!} then ran back to preschool pickup.

:: Finalized our troop cookie order after having a mini-panic attack when I realized I had TOTALLY SCREWED UP the cookie share donation category.  Several deep breaths and two mugs of coffee {I heart you java} later, had it all fixed which was fantastic because I still had to plan our February meeting for last night and find something outdoorsy for us to do in the dead of winter here in SW Ohio.   We're at a balmy 21 for today's high - brrr!!

:: Washed at least 3 loads of clothes, folded most of them, made seven meals, served up endless snacks to the bottomless pits that are my growing kids, waited after school for my daughter's talent show practice, ran a few miles, hit three pointers from the left and the right side {can I get a WOOT?!} while shooting baskets at the Y this morning with my little guy, took said little guy to swim lesson, then ran up to school to get big brother for his 12-1pm appt with the physical therapist.  I think I've made the drive back and forth from school/church at least 7 times since Monday morning. 

Oh, and yes, I managed to fit a couple showers, some sleep, and some good conversation with Knute in the past couple of days, too.

So why this monster list of a post? 

To tell you what you uber-busy moms already know because you're living some version of it yourself: life has demanded my full attention these past few days.

Blogging -while something I enjoy and am passionate about as a means to help myself - and more importantly - help others, has sat waiting on the back burner of my mind.

Thanks for understanding that I (as I always remind my kiddos) am just one woman
I'll have my Let's Go Krogering! post up for this week by end of day tonight and hopefully will get caught up on everything else.

Thanks for stopping by, for reading, and for subscribing.  My goal in 2011 for TNFM is simple: to make this site a useful resource to you.  I appreciate you hanging in with me while I get 'er done. ;-)

February 7, 2011

Malware Alert | Coupons.com Issues - Browser Redirect Fake "AVG 2011" MS Virus Check

It's Monday and it sure feels like a Monday when you have to start your day tracking down the source of a computer virus/malware! Oy!

First, thanks to intrepid reader Debra P who emailed me that she was seeing a malware pop up when she tried to print coupons from my Coupons.com affiliate links.  As I waited in line at the bank (which is where I was when I got her email), I started searching for answers on my iPhone.  I think I've gotten to the bottom of it.

From this post over at Hip2Save, I gathered this info that she had received directly from PR/Customer Service at Coupons.com:

Hello Couponers! My name is Rich and I am a Support Engineer at Coupons.com.


We are sorry to hear about these reports of viruses on our website and we have already reviewed our code to make certain that this issue is not being caused by or originating from our end.


The problems being described here indicate that some of our users are being tricked by a browser redirect trojan that has been sitting latently on their local machine since it was downloaded, most likely from a questionable file sharing network file, questionable email, questionable website, even an instant messaging program with sharing rights enabled.


The trojan modifies your web browser to redirect to a malicious website that is made to look like a Microsoft “My Computer” window running a fake virus scan that is detecting non-existent threats on their computer. This is not a real Microsoft window, you are not seeing a real virus scanner, the threats being shown do not really exist. There is only one virus here and that’s the one that keeps sending you to the malicious website. In that sense it is a pretty mild threat to your computer other than being very annoying and possibly scary.

This is a popular scam that resurfaces around the web from time to time. It is meant to draw people into downloading a real trojan that will continue to annoy its victims with more fake virus alerts even more persistently until they submit to and purchase a fake program that does absolutely nothing. The scammer can then attempt to use that credit card information for other purposes. Please do not follow the instructions on this malicious website. When you see it, close your browser.


There is a lot of useful information on the Internet on how to identify the source of and remove the trojan responsible for this annoyance. Please visit Google and search for “Fake AVG 2011″ for more information about this issue and how to remove it from you computer.


Again I wanted to reassure you that Coupons.com is not infected with a virus, and is not infecting your computer with a virus either. Our website is likely being targeted by the redirect virus on your computer by some logic unknown to us, probably because it is a popular site in your browsing history. My recommendation is to research the issue through Google, follow the solutions to neutralize the redirect virus, and use caution moving forward when downloading unknown emails, files, and websites to ensure it doesn’t find its way back on to your machine again.

Many thanks to Hip2Save for posting that direct answer above from the reps at Coupons.com.

So, what can/should you do if you use Coupons.com to print coupons OR if you are an affiliate of Coupons.com?

:: Check to see if this malware opens up when you try to print coupons from coupons.com on your computer/check your affiliate links to see if it opens when you try to print from your computer.  Again, this malware is a REDIRECT virus that is NOT part of the coupons.com affiliate link code but simply is using the coupons.com site address to redirect your browser (this is a trojan type virus). If it appears, close down your browser immediately or simply shut down your computer - do NOT click on any of the popup boxes.  I had to shut down one of my computers when it showed up today for me.

:: Run a system scan of your computer using your anti-virus software; this may not be enough to clean this very sneaky virus off your hard disk.

:: Google for manual instructions on "how to remove fake avg 2011 virus".  I've found one set of instructions here but you will find many sites with instructions on how to get rid of this malware. 

:: Check all your computers for this malware.  I have (3) computers myself to clean and am really grinding my teeth at how much time I'm going to have to spend on fixing this today.  Grr.....!!

:: BEWARE any and all suspicious files/downloads/links.  I consider myself VERY computer/net savvy and I'm still dealing with this issue.  Also, because it has just occured to me that this may have happened from a site my kids visit (ie: Nick Jr, PBS, DisneyXD), STRESS to your kiddos they SHOULD NEVER CLICK ON POPUPS OR CRAZY LINKS!!  Oy!!

To any/all of you out there dealing with this little mess, I am ever ever so sorry.  It looks like Coupons.com is not the origin but simply is the vehicle for this trojan horse virus to get activated if you've already got it downloaded on your computer.

In the meantime, I am removing my affiliate banner for Coupons.com from my sidebar in case someone else might be affected and if/when I have time today (!!), I will scrub my Coupons.com links from posts for the same reason.  Even though Coupons.com is technically in the clear on this and they are a paying affiliate for me, I'd rather not have any of you out there having to deal with this issue as well.

If you have questions for the folks at Coupons.com, you can call them at (650) 605-4600 or contact them online with their contact form

God bless y'all - I love ya!

February 6, 2011

Weekly Deals Roundup | February 6, 2011 - February 12, 2011

Check out these sites for the best ad matchups around SW Ohio
this week, February 6 - February 12, 2011.





*Kroger (02/07/11 - 02/13/11)*

***NEW Crazy 8 Sale - lots of items on sale for $0.88 (and many items ending in .88)***

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Savings Lifestyle)



*Meijer*

Current deals and matchups here (courtesy of Cincinnati Cents)


*Biggs Remke (2/07/11-2/13/11)*

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.    ;-)


February 5, 2011

What I Saved at The Stores | Week 5 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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Kroger 1/31/11
(Mega Event!!)



Spent: $68.07
Saved: $120.25 (60%)

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

Aldi 1/31/11
(Ice storm coming - get cheese curls & nuggets STAT!)



Spent: $8.95
Saved: $0.00

Kroger 2/3/11
(I was lucky enough to have the chance to host one of the Coffee-Mate Free Flavor Friday parties yesterday so I had some FREE Coffee-Mate coupons to use. While I was at Kroger, I also picked up a few more of the Mega Event deals as well as some socks for a donation drive at my kiddos school and snack for a kiddo basketball game this weekend.)


Spent: $28.90
Saved: $43.54 (60%)
Earned: $2.00 Catalina OYNO
(For buying (3) Coffee-Mate Creamers)

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Weekly Totals:
Spent: $105.92
Saved: $163.79 (61%)

I'm over my target budget of $80 per week by a long shot but as I've mentioned before, I use my target budget as a goal with the end goal of a monthly budget of $320 per 4 weeks; averaging the cost of my 4 week spending plays a big role in that monthly goal. 

Why I like that "averaging" idea is simply because when there's a big Mega Event going on at Kroger (like this week), I can stockpile items during the Mega Event that we'll use that month (or even longer than a month; I've got enough Finish DW detergent tabs to last me into the summer).  Stockpiling means I won't need to spend as much in the coming weeks  - I can "shop my stockpile" instead of shopping the stores.

I'll likely make one more quick trip to Kroger on Sunday to grab the very last of the Mega Event deals that we can use at my house.  I shouldn't need too much next week except for fresh produce, meats, and dairy items; hopefully, I'll be able to cherry-pick the best sale/coupon deals as well.  ;-)

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!

Coffee & Clicks | February 5, 2011, Edition #6

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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:: If you homeschool or are interested in homeschooling, there is a great post series being written by 16 (yes, I said 16!) different bloggers covering 16 unique facets of homeschooling over 10 days. You can see the full list of topics over at The Happy Housewife; she'll be covering 10 Days of Frugal Homeschooling. What a great resource!

:: Foreclosures are likely to peak in 2011 per this post on Two Friends with Foreclosed Homes at Free Money Finance. This, my friends, does not shock me - I can look up and down my street in my little corner of middle-class living in SW Ohio and count about 5 homes I've watched fall into foreclosure over the past two years. The MSM (mainstream media) can chat all they want about the recession being over and unemployment levels coming down - I'm not drinking that Kool-Aid. We're not at the bottom yet, peeps.

:: I was glad to see that Rocks in My Dryer is still Alive and Kicking; I've been missing reading her posts. She was one of the first bloggers I started reading regularly when I stepped into the interwebz in late 2007.

:: I love love LOVE this list of 29 Ways to Keep Me Coming Back to Your Blog Again and Again over at ProBlogger. So simple and so true; I need to implement some of these ideas here - starting with simply getting all my content organized so you can easily find what you need.

:: Headed to a Super Bowl party tomorrow evening and need some inspiration for a snack to bring? Be sure to check out the Super Bowl Snacks & Appetizer ideas over at $5 Dinners as well as the link ups; I'm liking all the avacados and guacamole in the pictures! Mmmmm.....!

Enjoy your weekend!

February 4, 2011

HOT FREEBIE | FREE 12 pk of 3"x3" Yellow Sticky Notes at Staples with Coupon - $11.79 Value!! (Exp. 2/5/11)


If you're headed out and about this weekend to do some shopping and you'll be near Staples, print this coupon for a 12 pk of 3"x3" yellow sticky notes.  This is a $11.79 value so it's a nice little dealio!!

My 7 year old son LOVES sticky notes of all types and thinks a trip to Staples is one of the best treats in the whole world; I think he's inherited his mother's love of office supplies, pens, and paper.  ;-)  I may just have to make a trip down to my Staples tomorrow!!

Thanks, Money Saving Mom!

CLIP | Sunday Coupon Preview 2/6/11 (2 Inserts - SS & RP) + 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, 02/06/11, 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 2/6/11 that look good to me:

Smart Source (SS)

$1.00/1 Philadelphia Cream Cheese Minis 4pk

$0.50/1 Land O Lakes Spreadable Butter

$1.00/2 Scotch Brite Sponges *(Kroger Mega Event item - ends 2/6/11)*

$6.00/1 Claritin 42 ct

$3.00/1 Olay Facial Moisturizer or Cleanser

Red Plum (RP)

$2.00/1 Maybelline Lip Color

BOGO Nivea Lip Care product

$2.00/1 Benecol Spread

Buy 2, Get 1 FREE Secret Deodorant

$6.00/1 Zyrtec 24 ct

$1.00/2 Kelloggs Mini Wheats, Raisin Bran, or All Bran

To see the full list of coupons in this Sunday's inserts, click 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 (2/4/11, 1:34 pm EST)

$1.00/10 Cans Purina Alpo

$1.00/1 Stouffer's Entree

$0.75/2 Taco Bell Home Originals (excludes seasoning packets)

$1.00/2 Butterfinger Snackerz

$1.50/1 Philadelphia Cooking Creme

$1.00/1 Purex Complete Crystals Softener

$0.55/1 Armour Pepperoni

$0.75/1 Muir Glen Tomatoes (any can/variety)

$2.50/2 U by Kotex

Enjoy your weekend!

February 3, 2011

Freebie Roundup {Flip Book, Omega-3, Possible PJ Pizza, Chuck E Cheese Tokens, Tide}


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!

:: Get a FREE photo flip book from Vistaprint right here; this would be a great Valentine's Day gift for someone you love.*

:: Request a FREE sample of Schiff Omega-3 Krill Oil for heart health from Walmart right here.

:: Register with Papa Johns Pizza here and if the Super Bowl goes into overtime, you'll get a FREE large pizza.

:: Need some Valentine's Day cards for your kiddo's classroom? Click here and print cards from Chuck E Cheese that are redeemable for 5 FREE tokens with food purchase at participating locations. Nice!

:: Request a FREE sample of Tide Plus Febreze Freshness right here.

Enjoy!

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

February 2, 2011

HOT FREEBIE | FREE Coffee-Mate Creamer on Free Flavor Friday, 2/4/11 {12 pm EST)

If you haven't seen the news of this FREEbie yet, I wanted to make sure I posted it so you can mark your calendars to grab it when it's live.

On Friday, 02/04/11, Coffee-Mate is hosting a Free Flavor Friday at their Facebook Fan page. Starting 12 pm EST/9 am PST, you can visit their FB page to get your coupon for a FREE bottle of Coffee-Mate.

This offer is good for the first 100,000 coupon requests so I advise going over and hitting their "Like" button now on FB; the page will likely be crushed once the deal goes live on Friday.

Hope you get a chance to enjoy this FREEbie, my fellow java junkies!

CREATE | February 2011: DIY Household Cleaners

I've been working on a DIY custom-fitted and customized t-shirt during January 2011; however, I decided yesterday to omit the "customized" part of adding any rosettes or embroidery. Truth be told, I tend to like my clothes to be simple in terms of color or line - I couldn't honestly see myself wearing something that was too elaborate. Since the custom fitting of the t-shirt fits me well, that's good enough for me on this DIY project

For February 2011, I'm planning on making some simple DIY household cleaners. With coupons and sales, I do pretty well at buying what we need to keep our home clean for pennies on the dollar.

There are a few things we like to use, however, that are a bit spendier and for which coupons/sales can be tricky to find. For those items, I thought it would be wise to *finally* try one of the many DIY household cleaner recipes that are posted around the interwebz. ;-)

Here's what I'll be making:

:: Homemade Febreze (February 8, 2011)

:: Homemade Disinfectant Wipes (February 15, 2011)

:: Homemade Window Cleaner (February 22, 2011)

I'll post a quick vlog of each of these little projects so that you can follow along.

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!