Posts Tagged ‘ budget ’

Weekly Spending Summary (6/15-6/21)

Tuesday, June 24th, 2014

Some of you have wondered where I get my printable coupons. Here are the main coupon sites that I use: Coupons.com, Coupon Network, Smart Source, Red Plum, Ibotta, Hopster, Checkout 51 and Saving Star.  Manufacturer websites and Facebook pages are another great source.

This past week felt like one of those weeks where all you do is just get enough done to survive!  It was the week for Vacation Bible School at our church and so every evening found us rushing out the door to get there in time.  My husband taught the adult class for part of the evening so in addition to the usual busyness those kinds of weeks bring, that made it extra full.   We really enjoyed Bible School though and the children’s excitement was so contagious!  Every day Logan, our 5 yr. old, would wake up and pretty much count down the hours until it was time to leave.

Saturday afternoon we went on a date while my husband’s four younger siblings baby sat for us.  Then we came back home and enjoyed dinner and some game playing with them and a family friend.  Good times!

I did manage to get a bit of shopping done one day though was happy to score several decent deals.  Read on for the details!

Favorite buys:
* Better than free Dial men’s body wash
* Free toothbrushes
* Eggs for $0.97/dozen
* Utz chips for $1.00 each

Total Spent: $17.43
Total Saved with Coupons: $29.77
Total Saved with Sales: $44.11
Total Saved: $73.88

CVS: $1.10
Saved with Coupons: $6.00
Saved with Sales: $6.98

I had a $5 CVS gift card that I earned through Recyclebank that I used to pay for part of this purchase.

The toothbrushes and deodorants were all free after coupons and sales.

Bought:

  • 2 Colgate toothbrushes $2.99 each
  • Right Guard deodorant $3.00
  • Dry Idea deodorant $3.00

Coupons Used:

  • Two $1.00 Colgate coupons from the Sunday newspaper coupon inserts
  • $1.00 Right Guard coupon from the Sunday newspaper coupon inserts
  • $1.00 Dry Idea coupon from the Sunday newspaper coupon inserts

Got Back:

  • $4.00 in Extra Bucks coupon for purchasing the Colgate toothbrushes (can be used on next purchase of any item)
  • $2.00 in Extra Bucks coupon for purchasing the Right Guard and Dry Idea (can be used on next purchase of any item)

Giant: $10.89
Saved with Coupons: $5.98
Saved with Sales: $17.20

Yes, I truly bought 11 dozen eggs!  Or 132 eggs if you like how that sounds better.  I saw this deal early in the week and kept trying to decide if I was crazy to do it or not.   I mean, that’s a lot of eggs, after all but they were only $0.97 a dozen.   The more I thought about it, the more I really felt like I should go for it.  Here’s why:

1.  Eggs here are anywhere from $1.50 to $1.99 dozen so this saved me at minimum $5.83.  That’s pretty significant savings.
2.  We can use eggs pretty fast around here.  If I have a lot of them I’ll make breakfast for dinner, egg salad and/or homemade egg custard, all of which use up eggs pretty quickly.
3.  The expiration on these eggs are the end of July.  That’s quite a ways off and besides, I’m not scared to use eggs several weeks past their expiration date since that date is really just a “best if used by” date.

So, I’m having fun making lots of egg things with my cheap eggs.  Honestly, the worst part about the whole deal was how much space they took up in our fridge!

Oh, I also got BBQ sauce too.  Not that we needed it- I still have a couple of bottles from when I got them free last summer.  But I figured I’d either give them away to friends or donate them to the food bank.  How could I pass up free when I was going to be at the store anyway?

Bought:

  • 2 KC BBQ Sauce $0.99 each
  • 11 Egglands Best Eggs $1.99 each

Coupons Used:

  • $7.00 instant savings for purchasing $20 worth of Egglands eggs
  • Two $0.50 KC printable coupons (doubled to $1.00 each)
  • Four $1.00 Egglands coupons from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts

Got Back:

Weis: $5.43
Saved with Coupons: $17.79
Saved with Sales: $19.93

I decided to head to Weis this week since they had a deal that I was hoping to do and get ham steak for $0.78/lb.  Unfortunately they didn’t have the flavor in stock that my coupon was for and so I couldn’t do that deal.  But I got some other great bargains anyway.

I was really excited to get Utz chips for just $1.00.  We don’t eat just a lot of chips but in the summer we tend to more because they are so handy to take along on picnics and eat with hotdogs and hamburgers.  And the Grandma Utz ones are my husband’s absolute favorite so that was a double score!

The Dial body wash ended up being a $2.00 moneymaker after coupons and sales.  I was very excited about getting this since it seems my husband goes through body wash incredibly fast.  (He has a construction job and gets filthy, so it takes a lot of soap to get him squeaky clean.  Don’t hear me wrong, I’m not complaining about it.  I’m grateful that he is particular and cares about being clean!)

The Truvia and the Pompeian vinegar were both $0.99 each.   The Malt-O-Meal cereal was free.  They contacted me and wondered if they could send me some free product coupons and of course I didn’t turn that down!  I was happy to see they carried something comparable to Lucky Charms since that is one of the children’s and my husband’s favorite bought “junk” cereal.  We haven’t tried it yet, but in the past I’ve always been very happy with Malt-O-Meal!

Bought:

  • Truvia $2.99
  • Pompeian Balsamic Vinegar $1.99
  • 4 Utz Chips $2.00 each
  • Malt O Meal Cereal $4.29
  • 3 Dial Mens Body Wash $1.83 each
    - priced at$3.50 each but saved $5 instantly when you bought 3

Coupons Used:

  • $2.00 Truvia printable coupon
  • $0.50 Pompeian printable coupon (doubled to $1.00)
  • Four $0.75 Utz printable coupons (doubled to $1.00 each)
  • Free Malt O Meal product coupon received from manufacturer ($4.29)
  • Buy 2, Get 1 Free coupon from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts ($3.50)
  • Free Dial body wash from Purex Insiders (only took off $3.00)

Got Back:

  • $1.00 via Ibotta for purchasing Dial Men’s body wash

Misc.: $0

A friend gave us 2 beautiful heads of lettuce from their garden.  So kind of them!

Some friends from church gave us this “smore ingredient” gift as a thank you.  Isn’t it such a neat, creative idea?  Should make for a fun, family night sometime this summer!

And another friend blessed us with fresh sugar peas and a scrumptious chicken lasagna.  We are quite blessed with kind, generous friends don’t you think?

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Monthly Spending Summary (May)

Saturday, June 21st, 2014

If you want to see exactly what I purchased, check the posts under My Deals for more details.

Well, I did really well with my grocery spending again this month.  Even if I hadn’t had the gas savings I would have almost been under my $220 budget.  But the gas savings are what really gives me a boost.  Not only do I get free gas, many of the items I purchase actually turn into moneymakers with the deal!  I estimate that I make about $20 a month on average thanks to the gas deals that I do.

I’m almost tempted to drop my grocery budget back down to $200 a month.  We had raised it the beginning of the year to help give us a bit more leeway since we are now a family of 5 and since grocery prices are rising.  But since I’ve been able to do so well I’m thinking of dropping it to $200 for the rest of the year and putting that extra $20 a month (or $140 for the year) into our budget for fixing up our house.  There are some projects there that I’d really love to get done and the extra budget would help.  And I think we are eating quite well anyway, so I don’t really feel like spending more money on our food and household needs!

I do love having the extra though.  It’s freed me up to not have to be quite so focused on doing deal shopping which has been wonderful this summer when life is busier.  Plus it is good to take a bit of a breather from it occasionally too, just to refocus and not get burned out.  Because face it, deal shopping is work.  Why do you think most people don’t bother doing it?

For those of you that care, here are the stats…

Monthly Grocery/Household Budget: $220
Total Spent: $65.24
Total Saved with Coupons: $84.98
Total Saved with Sales: $80.01
Total Saved: $164.99 + $167.00 in gas savings (thanks to grocery purchases)

Week 1: $3.17
Week 2: $76.88
Week 3: $55.90
Week 4: -$62.70 (this was a negative due to gas savings credit)

Credits: $8.01
I cashed out my Saving Star earnings.  This is such a simple way to save and I love that it can be combined with sales and paper coupons!

Ending Monthly Balance: -$154.76
This is the amount that I am under budget for the month!

Ending Annual Balance: -$449.59
In case you are confused, this is the amount I am under budget for the year.  I’ve mentioned before that I do a lot of canning and freezing so in the next couple of months I’ll be spending quite a bit of money on fruits and vegetables for that.  Still, I think I’m sitting pretty well and like I mentioned above, I’m very seriously considering dropping my budget to $200 again.

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Weekly Spending Summary (6/8-6/14)

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

Some of you have wondered where I get my printable coupons. Here are the main coupon sites that I use: Coupons.com, Coupon Network, Smart Source, Red Plum, Ibotta, Hopster, Checkout 51 and Saving Star.  Manufacturer websites and Facebook pages are another great source.

This week was remarkably more calm than the last couple of weeks and it was so refreshing!  We all needed it desperately!  As I mentioned last week, I’m doing less shopping this summer and so this week I only went to two stores.- although I did end up going to Aldi twice.  That was partially because I offered to grab groceries for a friend that just had a baby and I knew she often shopped at Aldi so I offered to go there for her.  I think though that it will end up keeping me from needing to go there this week so in the long run, it really won’t be an “extra” trip.

Favorite buys:
* Ziploc bags that made me $12!
* Strawberries for $1.00/lb.
* Free Quaker oatmeal cup

Total Spent: $96.24
Total Saved with Coupons: $3.00
Total Saved with Sales: $4.19
Total Saved: $7.19 + 40.09 in gas savings

Giant: $23.52
Total Saved with Coupons: $3.00
Total Saved with Sales: $4.19

I had a rain check for the Ziploc bags and after coupons and gas rewards they ended up being a moneymaker of $12.00!  I didn’t really need them but since they were such a big moneymaker, I figured I’d give them to family to use.  I actually could have saved another $4 with coupons if I had just had my head together.  I printed out four $1/2 Ziploc coupons right before I left to go shopping and left them lying on the printer.  I didn’t think about it until I was at Giant and there was no way it was worth taking all 3 children home again just to get those coupons.  It was a good deal anyway!

(If you aren’t familiar with how the gas deals work, basically you earn so much off a gallon of gas when you purchase a certain number of specific items.  This time I earned $0.80 off a gallon, up to 30 gallons of gas, for purchasing the Ziploc bags.)

The Quaker oatmeal cup was free after a Saving Star credit.  Every Friday they have a “Friday Freebie” offer and you can get something for totally free with their credits.  It’s so easy to do!

The Athenos feta was a total splurge.  I suddenly remembered a Strawberry Lettuce Salad that we love that uses feta cheese and I wanted to make it while we had fresh strawberries.  So I got the cheapest feta I could find, but even so it was rather pricy!  If I had planned ahead I could have gotten it on sale with coupons for at least that or grabbed it at Aldi.  But I didn’t.  That is when I’m grateful for all the money I do save.  It allows me to occasionally splurge like this and not have to feel badly!

Bought:

  • 10 Ziploc Bags $2.00 each
    - bought with rain check
  • Quaker Oatmeal Cup $1.00
  • Atheno Feta Cheese 8 oz. Chunk $4.50

Coupons Used:

  • Two $1/3 Ziploc coupons from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts
  • $0.75/2 Ziploc coupon found lying on shelf in grocery store (doubled to $1.00)

Got Back:

  • 100% back via Saving Star for purchasing the Quaker Oatmeal Cup ($1.00)
  • $24.00 in gas rewards savings for purchasing the Ziploc
  • $5.00 via Saving Star for purchasing $20 worth of Ziploc products

Aldi: $25.56

Grabbed some stuff at Aldi again this week…my favorites like beans, tortillas, onions, potatoes, saltines as well as few other not-so-usual things.  I haven’t seen a good sale on nuts but like to have cashews on hand for a quick snack when I need something to hold me over till the next meal.  I also enjoy snacking on almonds and we also use them a lot in salads.

The bread is to make some bread pudding for our neighbor- told him I’d do it as a Father’s Day gift for him since he loves the stuff.  I need to find a good recipe though.  I’ve never had the stuff before and really don’t know what makes it good!  So if you have a recipe, please let me know!

Bought:

  • 3 lb. Apples $3.59
  • Potato Chips $1.79
  • 5 lb. Red Potatoes $3.49
  • Corn Chips $0.89
  • 2 Black Beans $0.59 each
  • Almonds $4.99
  • Cashew Halves $2.59
  • Saltines 0.89
  • 3 lb. Onions $2.29
  • Bread $0.89
  • 2 Hot Dog Buns $0.89
  • Tortillas $1.19

Misc.: $87.25

* This lovely head of lettuce is straight from my little city garden aka the flower bed.  :)   You might remember that several weeks back, I bought 6 lettuce plants for about $2.50 cents from a local greenhouse.  I planted them in my flower bed among some other plants and we’ve been enjoying the over the last several weeks.  The variety is called New Red Fire and it’s the same kind that I typically buy at our local farmer’s market.  We love it!

And I love that basically I got 5 heads of lettuce for free.  See, I typically pay about $2.50 for a head of this lettuce at market and so buy paying that much for 5 plants, I saved myself some money pretty easily!

A small sampling of the strawberries that I got.

* $58.50 for strawberries at $1.00/lb.
I was super happy to get strawberries for such a great price at a fairly local pick-your-own patch.  The patch is actually about 40 min. away but it is only 10 min. from my in-laws.  We are so blessed to live in an area that has lots of produce farms and the like.  I realize that I can get fruits and veggies for much cheaper than many of you as a result!

My mom-in-law and a few of my sister-in-laws that still live at home went and picked a bunch of strawberries for me and then came and helped me get them ready to put in the freezer.  I was so blessed!  And yes, I have an awesome mother-in-law (as I mentioned on Facebook)!

My mom never froze strawberries but my mom-in-law always crushed them and froze them that way and then they enjoyed them on cake and occasionally as ice cream topping or in smoothies too.  So when we got married, I decided to give it a try and it’s so simple and I’ve learned to really like having them in the freezer  to pull out for all sorts of things.  In fact, I often mix them with frozen blueberries and my frozen peaches to make a refreshing mixed fruit dish.

* $28.75 for milk money
We get milk from a local dairy farm for $2.00/gal. and so withdrew some cash from our checking account to buy milk there.  Do you see all that cream at the top in those jars?  It’s kind of hard to see, but each gallon has about 3 inches of cream on it.  I often skim it off and use is in recipes or for making homemade whipped cream.  And actually, I recently even made butter with it!

Credits: $40.09
The last number of weeks I’ve been buying various items that are part of the Giant gas deals.  Basically, you get points for purchasing the products and then you can redeem those points for gas.  I was able to get a whole tank of gas (30 gallons) for totally free!  However, only $40.09 of that went back into my grocery budget and here’s why.

Several weeks ago there was a deal where if you bought a $500 American Express gift card at Giant, you’d get back $69.05 in free gas.  We did that deal but are planning to use the card for non-grocery things so that money will go back into whatever budget categories we use the gift card for.  (To see the details of these purchases look at my previous Giant purchases under my Weekly Spending Summaries.)

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Weekly Spending Summary 6/1-6/7

Tuesday, June 10th, 2014

Some of you have wondered where I get my printable coupons. Here are the main coupon sites that I use: Coupons.com, Coupon Network, Smart Source, Red Plum, Ibotta, Hopster, Checkout 51 and Saving Star.  Manufacturer websites and Facebook pages are another great source.

Last week was another busy week for us.  I mentioned in my last Weekly Spending Summary that my husband’s grandma had died and with having her funeral on Monday, it kind of made the week seem short and out of kilter.  Then on Saturday, my husband’s cousin got married.  Thankfully it was a local wedding which made things so much nicer!  We had out-of-area family come for that and they stayed the weekend with us.  It was so much fun to have them around and the lack of sleep from staying up and hanging out was so worth it.

But I’m quite ready for a more normal week again.  It’s been a little rough so far with everyone kind of being behind on sleep and the kiddos getting used to just being here again and having no one else to play with.  They were all kind of grumpy the last couple of days and I was trying hard not to join them!  (Wasn’t terribly successful too many times!)  This morning I decided we needed something to help us out so I went to my Educational Ideas for Kids Pinterest board and found some fun things for my 5 yr. old to do.  He was kept occupied for a while and my 2 ½ yr. old joined him at the table and pretended she was doing school stuff too.  There were a few fights but it was much better than it had been!

You may have noticed that I haven’t been doing quite as much shopping the last several weeks.  Or maybe you didn’t.  I’m sure some of you think I still do a lot of shopping compared to what you are used to doing.  Anyway, if you are really observant you likely noticed that I haven’t been going to CVS and/or Rite Aid nearly every week.  I kind of decided to take a bit of a shopping break this summer for several reasons.  For one thing, summer always tends to feel busy for us, especially since I do a lot of canning and freezing.  Also, my son had been going to kindergarten 3 days a week and now his school year is over so that means most weeks I have to take 3 of them to the store with me, not just 2.  And while I’ve found things that help keep it somewhat stress-free, I still don’t like to make it too complicated!

I’m also not doing as much shopping simply because I have a great stockpile of shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrushes, body wash, deodorant and all of those sorts of things that I typically can get for free at Rite Aid and CVS.  So I think that even if I rarely hit those stores this summer, I should still be just fine.  And if I do actually end up needing one of those things anyway?  Well, I’m okay with having to spend some money on it.  After all, I’m ahead with my grocery budget by quite right now and so it shouldn’t hurt me too much.

Here are a few of this week’s favorite buys:
* Pull-ups for $3.99
* Moneymaking paraben/sulfate free body wash
* Wishbone dressing for $0.69
* Moneymaking Domino brown and confectioner sugar
*32 oz. Olive Oil for $3.99
* Glad trash bags for $2.71
* $0.99 Hellman’s mayo

Total Spent: $25.11
Total Saved with Coupons: $21.75
Total Saved with Sales: $30.24
Total Saved: $51.99 (+ $12 in gas rewards and $6.50 in Ibotta savings)

Rite Aid: $0 (gift card)
Saved with Coupons: $5.00
Saved with Sales: $5.00

I had a gift card that I had received from returning an item that I used to pay for this purchase of $3.17.  I wasn’t planning to go to Rite Aid at all this week but when I saw that I could get this paraben/phosphate free body wash and actually make $2.01 on it, I figured I might as well stop by.  I had some light bulbs that I needed to exchange there sometime anyway.  Unfortunately, they were still out of stock on the light bulbs so I’ll still need to stop back by sometime to exchange them.

Bought:

  • Sebamed face and body wash $7.99

Coupons Used:

Got Back:

  • $5.00 via Ibotta for purchasing the Sebamed

Giant: $29.23
Saved with Coupons: $10.50
Saved with Sales: $25.24

I had fun getting some great deals at Giant again this week.  Seriously, I save so much money by couponing here!  The only other grocery store that we have in this area (other than Aldi and a few family owned stores) is Weis and while I like them okay, their prices are overall quite a bit more than Giant’s.  And Giant’s sales totally rock compared to Weis too.  So I’m very grateful to be within easy shopping distance of two Giants!

We were really low on trash bags so last week I grabbed both kitchen and regular black trash bags at Aldi.  Go figure, this week they go on sale for a killer price at Giant!  Oh well, I bought them anyway since we seem to go through trash bags really fast these days.   And really, how could I pass them up when they were only $2.71/box after coupons and sales.  I’m actually kind of kicking myself that I didn’t get more since that is about half of what I pay at Aldi and I rarely can get good deals on trash bags.

Yes, I know I just bought flour.  But I guess I’ve been doing a lot of baking for various events and I was almost out again.  I’m still hoping for a good sale on it one of these days soon!

Oh I was super excited to get Extra Virgin Olive Oil for an incredible price!  I’ve been wanting to get away from canola oil as much as possible to avoid GMO’s and so I’m trying to use more butter, olive oil and coconut oil.  Anyway, several weeks ago I was browsing the olive oil section at Giant just to see what their prices were and noticed that the 32 oz. bottles of Pompeian Olive Oil were on sale for just $4.99!  They regularly are $12.49 (sells for even more on Amazon!) and I knew that in the past I had paid about that price for bottle around half that size.  So I double checked the shelf tag several times to make sure I wasn’t missing something.  (I wasn’t.)  I nearly grabbed a bottle right then and there but since I’m so cheap frugal and since the sale was good through 6/14 (yes, you can still get the deal!) I decided to come home and check to see if there were any coupons available and sure enough there was!  So I used them to get 2 bottles for just $3.99 each!  And I also used a Pompeian coupon to get some balsamic vinegar for a decent price too.  It’s not something I use a lot but I like to have it on hand for when I make something that calls for it.

The Hellman’s mayo was a good deal at just $0.99 after coupons and sales and the NP Organic ketchup ended up being $1.29 after coupons and sales.  I like to buy this brand because it uses real sugar instead of HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) like most brands.  I can’t avoid that stuff in everything but ketchup is one thing that I can easily and fairly inexpensively buy without it in.

I had a rain check for the Domino sugars and after coupons and gas rewards they ended up being a moneymaker of $6.05!  I go through brown sugar kind of fast since I make lots of Easy Homemade Granola.

(If you aren’t familiar with how the gas deals work, basically you earn so much off a gallon of gas when you purchase a certain number of specific items.  This time I earned $0.40 off a gallon, up to 30 gallons of gas, for purchasing the Domino sugar.)

Bought:

  • 2 Glad kitchen bags $4.82 each
  • Glad ForceFlex trash bags $6.49
  • Gold Medal Flour $2.99
  • Pompeian Balsamic Vinegar $2.59
  • Nature’s Promise organic ketchup $1.79
  • 2 Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil 32 oz. $4.99 each
  • Hellman’s mayo $1.99
    -bought with rain check
  • Domino Confectioner Sugar $1.79
  • 4 Domino Brown Sugar $1.79 each
    - bought with rain check

Coupons Used:

  • $5.00 instant savings for purchasing $15 of Glad bags
  • $0.50 Pompeian vinegar printable coupon (doubled to $1.00)
  • Two $1.00 Pompeian olive oil printable coupons
  • $0.50 Nature’s Promise coupon from coupon machine inside store
  • $1.00 Hellman’s coupon from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts
  • Five $0.50 Domino’s coupons from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts (one doubled to $1.00)

Got Back:

  • $12.00 in gas rewards savings for purchasing the Domino sugar

Target: $1.63
Saved with Coupons: $6.25

Several weeks ago I made a grocery purchase at Target where I earned a $5 gift card for purchasing the items that I did.  I used this gift card to pay for what I bought this time and so I only needed to spend $1.63 out of pocket.

I hadn’t actually planned to go to Target this week but we were over that direction one evening and I had a clothing purchase that I needed to return so we decided to stop by.  And of course, if I was going to go there anyway, why not get a few deals too, right?

After coupons and sales, the Pull-ups were just $3.99 and the Wishbone dressing $0.62 each.  I don’t usually buy Pull-ups because I can get diapers for less.  But with the package sizes of diapers changing, this is just as good of a deal as diapers of the same size.  Plus they are easier to use with a semi-potty trained child.  And while I prefer homemade salad dressing (such as this Homemade Mexian Dressing), our kids don’t care for it.  They’ll eat huge mounds of salad if they can have Ranch dressing and since I have yet to find a good homemade Ranch dressing recipe, I just buy it and look for ways to get it as cheap as possible.

Bought:

  • Pull-ups $8.99
  • 2 Wishbone salad dressing $1.99 each

Coupons Used:

  • $3.50 Pull-ups printable coupon
  • Two $1.00 Wishbone printable coupons
  • $0.75/2 Target Wishbone printable coupon

Got Back:

  • $1.50 via Ibotta for  purchasing the Pull-ups

Credits: $5.75

I cashed out my Ibotta credits.  LOVE this app!

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Tags: , , | Categories: My Deals

Weekly Spending Summary (5/25-5/31)

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

Some of you have wondered where I get my printable coupons. Here are the main coupon sites that I use: Coupons.com, Coupon Network, Smart Source, Red Plum, Ibotta, Hopster, Checkout 51 and Saving Star.  Manufacturer websites and Facebook pages are another great source.

Whew, it’s been a busy last week!  This past weekend my husband’s family went to a cabin for a long weekend making the beginning of last week busy trying to get everything done in preparation to go.  We split meal responsibilities which made the work of preparing so much easier which was so nice!  The place we stayed was beautiful and so relaxing.  It was in not far from civilization but was still in the rural enough that it felt like a retreat.  And we had an absolutely wonderful time together!  I’m so grateful to be married into this family.  No, they are not perfect but they truly enjoy each other, can still love each other even though they don’t see eye to eye on everything, are willing to try to grow and learn from each other and just have lots of fun together.

We also buried my husband’s grandmother today.  She passed away last week before we left for the cabin and we almost ditched our plans but ended up being able to make it work in the end- we just had to leave a bit earlier yesterday than we would have otherwise.  Lena was a lady of strong faith in God; a lady who dealt with some really tough circumstances but didn’t let them make her bitter.  And she was a lady of lots of spunk.  She was 91 but up until just a few years ago had enough energy to still work hard- at least for a lady her age!  She helped us a number of different times here as we worked at remodeling our house.  She is going to leave a big hole in her families’ lives but she wasso very ready to enjoy the wonder of Heaven and that made it much easier to release her.

So it’s been kind of a different week around here and as a result I didn’t do quite as much deal shopping as usual.

On to the weekly spending summary.  Here are my favorite buys:

  • California Pizza Kitchen pizza for $0.50
  • Prego pasta sauce that was better than free

Total Spent: -$62.70 (negative due to gas rewards listed below)
Total Saved with Coupons: $21.38
Total Saved with Sales: $11.81
Total Saved: $33.19

Giant: $9.36
Saved with Coupons: $16.69
Saved with Sales: $6.32

Got a few deals at Giant this week including the Prego pasta sauce which was a gas deal.  Basically after sales/coupons/gas rewards the Prego was a moneymaker of $2.04.

(If you aren’t familiar with how the gas deals work, basically you earn so much off a gallon of gas when you purchase a certain number of specific items.  This time I earned $0.40 off a gallon, up to 30 gallons of gas, for purchasing the Prego.)

And just a note about the Fels-Naptha.  I love using it as a stain remover.  It’s super cheap and does a great job of getting out grass stain, baby blowouts and lots of other things.

Bought:

  • 4 Texas Toast Croutons $1.59 each
  • 4 Prego Pasta Sauce $2.99 each
  • Wishbone Ranch Dressing $2.59
  • 2 Purex Detergent $1.99 each
  • Fels-Naptha $1.39

Coupons Used:

  • Four $0.40 Texas Toast coupons from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts (doubled to $0.80)
  • Two $0.75/2 Prego printable coupons (doubled to $1.00 each)
  • Two Purex Free Product coupons from Purex Insiders (took off $4.55 each)
  • Fels-Naptha Free Product coupon from Purex Insiders (took off $1.39)

Got Back:

  • $0.75 via Ibotta for purchasing the Wishbone dressing
  • $12.00 in gas rewards savings for purchasing the Prego

Target: $2.55
Saved with Coupons: $4.69
Saved with Sales: $5.49

I forgot to take a picture but I bought 2 California Pizza Kitchen Pizzas and Kraft Dressing.

I saw this deal for California Pizza Kitchen pizzas for just $0.50 each after coupons and sales and was trying to figure out how I could take adavantage of it since I wasn’t really going to be in the area of Target this week.  Then I got the brilliant idea to use the pizzas for our lunch when we arrived at the cabin since we needed to provide our own lunch that day and I knew that a Target was right along our route.  So we stopped and got two as well as the Kraft Ranch dressing since I had forgotten that for the salad that I made.

I never had CPK pizzas before but they were really, really good and I was wishing so badly that I could have gotten a few more!  But I didn’t really feel want to have to deal with the hassle of taking the pizzas to the cabin and then back home again.

Oh and when I realized that I had forgotten the Ranch dressing for my salad I decided to do a quick check and see if there were any Target Cartwheel offers available for any salad dressings.  Sure enough, there was one available for the Kraft brand which made it significantly cheaper than the Target brand.  It only saved me $0.19 but it was such an easy way to save.

Speaking of Target Cartwheel, did you know that there is a search feature for it?  If you go the app, at the top of the menu there is a “search” option.  You can click on the barcode logo and scan any item to find out if it has a Cartwheel coupon that can be used with it.  Pretty awesome!  And I can’t tell you how often I’ve discovered that I could save a bit more on something I was already planning to purchase.

Bought:

  • 2 California Pizza Kitchen pizzas $5.49 total (on sale buy one, get one free)
  • Kraft dressing $1.88

Coupons Used:

Aldi: $20.01

I was to take baked potatoes to our family weekend at the cabin but since we love sweet potatoes too I decided to take some of both.  So the potatoes and the sour cream were for that.

Bought:

  • 4 lb. Oranges $3.49
  • Two 3 lb. Sweet Potatoes $1.79 each
  • 5 lb. Red Potatoes $3.49
  • Heavy Whipping Cream $1.99
  • 3 Sour Cream $1.29 each
  • 3 lb. Apples $3.59

Sharp Shopper: $16.08

Stopped by my favorite local discount grocery store to grab a few things.  The lunch meat was just a little bit over $2/lb., which is my usual buy price, but it was didn’t have any nitrates in it and so I felt it was worth the extra $0.40.  The Simply Lemonade was a little treat for us- it’s so good!  And that brown package to the right?  It’s Oreo cookie wafers.  I recently discovered them there and they are delicious plain but really, I bought them to use in my cheesecake crusts.

Credit: $110.70
The last number of weeks I’ve been buying various items that are part of the Giant gas deals.  Basically, you get points for purchasing the products and then you can redeem those points for gas.  I was able to get $110.70 worth of gas for free as a result.  And since I only buy the grocery items that are part of these deals because they either get me free gas or make me money I put the savings back into my grocery budget.  (To see the details of these purchases look at my previous Giant purchases under my Weekly Spending Summaries.)

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