Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Reflection! - Part II

In trying to implement my desire to do more blogging, I've come to realize that I need to get myself back to a state of organization that I haven't seen in many, many years.

I started this past weekend by going through a couple of the piles of papers that I have accumulated. I know that organization will simplify my life, I've just not been able to keep up with it. That being said, this 4-day weekend is probably going to be consumed with paper!!

This is a task that is going to require a lot of upkeep and decision making on my part, which is why I'm making it one of the many resolutions that I have for 2009.

Monday, December 29, 2008


I have not done a lot of posting over the last few weeks. I've even cut back on the amount of shopping I've been doing. Which leads me to wondering what I want to make as my New Year's resolution, and I think I've come up with a couple of things...

I want to blog more. I've got a pretty good stockpile of razors, shampoo, conditioner, lotion and smell good stuff (candles) right now, so I'm going to search for deals that will reduce my food budget and see what can be "bought" for free! Even if I'm not going to buy anything myself, I'm going to try to post deals that I find.

I REALLY want to reduce my food budget. It's really hard for me because we don't have a Kroger, Safeway, Aldi or any other discount food store. I will see what deals are in the Winn-Dixie, Target, Wal-mart, CVS and Walgreens and share what I find.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Quick CVS Trip

I wanted to take advantage of this week's 2 day freebie blowout at CVS, so yesterday I gathered up the coupons I had for stuff we use/need and headed to my local CVS.

I had coupons for Thermacare (they were out, of course), Zantac 150 and Benefiber drink mix sticks.

I had some left over ECBs (3.00 & 2.00) and wanted to keep my OOP as low as possible.

Transaction #1:
Zantac 150: $4.99 - $1.00 MQ
Total: $3.99
Used: 3.00 ECB

Total OOP with tax: $1.12 (I think, I lost my receipt somewhere so I'm not 100% sure of the OOP) - paid with gift card.
Earned: 4.99 ECB

Transaction #2:
Benefiber Drink Mix: $7.29 - $2.00 MQ
Total: $5.29
Used: 4.99 ECB from Transaction #1

Total OOP with tax: $.42 - paid with change in my purse.
Earned: 7.29 ECB

I also received an interesting CRT - 25 Free Digital Prints (up to $7.25 value). I have one from a previous trip of 10 free digital prints (up to $2.50 value). I have some pictures that I had taken over the Summer that I wanted to get printed up, so now I can get them for FREE!!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Free Luminair? Another Target experience

I read a lot about the Luminaire start up kit being marked down to $4.99 at Target and using the $5 MQ that was in the Sunday flier to make it at least free, if not getting a $.01 overage.

Here's what I got and the coupons I was able to use at the register:
2 Luminaire @ $4.99 each - $3 MQ
4 packs of batteries @ $1.00 each - 4 @ $1 MQ (free after coupons)
1 package Goodnites @ $10.49 - $1.50
2 Snowcone Hot Chocolate mix @ $4.00 each
4 Cheezit @ $2.50 each - 2 @ $1/2
2 Fudge Shoppe cookies @ $2.33 each
1 Velvet color poster @ $1.00
1 Wall Calendar @ $1.00

Total OOP: $41.57 (At some point during my travels to the different departments in the store, I misplaced my Keebler coupons, so I would have bought different items and paid less).
And I earned a $5 GC for the purchase of 5 Keebler products.

Now for the fun part. The cashier tried scanning the $5 Luminaire coupon. It wouldn't go through so she called for backup (a/k/a a manager). I got the same story as the last time, I couldn't use a coupon for more than the price of an item. After some argument on my part about how they get reimbursed for the amount of the coupon, I was told that it was Target's policy to not accept coupons for over the amount and that they couldn't adjust a MQ down, they could only adjust down a Target coupon. When I realized that the manager was not going to budge on the issue, I told them to check me out and I would take care of it at Customer Service.

When I got to Customer Service, the girl told me that the she had already been called about the situation and that the manager was coming. I didn't have my copy of the coupon policy with me, so I asked for the corporate number and called while I was standing at the CS desk. I talked with a REALLY nice guy. In the meantime, a CS manager came up and was trying to explain to me that I couldn't use the coupon because when she scanned the coupon it came up to a negative amount. The guy from corporate tried talking to her and explaining to her how to override the coupon so I could use it. The CS manager was not very nice and argued with the corporate guy. She even told him that they needed to change the way the computers were programmed because she was told that they couldn't accept coupons over the amount and she wasn't going to do it. Unfortunately, their conversation got disconnected before he could tell her how to adjust the coupon.

In the end I was able to use the coupon, by returning both kits, having them both re-scanned, she keyed in my $3 coupon, used the $5 coupon and I paid the difference. It was a confusing and complicated issue that could have been resolved by the cashier hitting the K1 button to begin with.

The best part was, the different cashiers and managers kept telling me that they couldn't take coupons that would make an item free because they couldn't sell me anything for free. Luckily they weren't smart enough to see that I got 4 packs of batteries for free!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Cheap CVS trip

I wanted to add a photo to my Christmas cards, and I still had some free 4x6 prints in my CVS account, so I decided to use it as an opportunity to possibly roll my ECBs from a couple of weeks ago.

I am making an effort to see how much stuff, that I will use and/or need, for the cheapest amount of money out of my pocket. I'm talking about utilizing coupons and ECBs to keep the amount of cash I use to pay to a minimum.

I needed to pick up the pictures so I could get my Christmas cards out (I know I'm late on getting these out, but better late than never), so I browsed through this week's ad to see what I could come up with.

Here's what I came up with:
1 Schick Quattro Titanium Trimmer: $7.99 - $2 MQ
2 Johnson & Johnson First Aid Kit: $.99 x 2 - $3/2 MQ (coupon was adjusted down to $2.97)
1 CVS Lip Balm: $.99
Used $5.99 ECB
TOTAL OOP: $.45 (which is the amount of the sales tax)

The receipt shows:
Subtotal: .00
Sales Tax: .45
TOTAL: .45

I think that's why the $3 coupon was adjusted to $2.97 to cover the sales tax.

I also earned a $3 ECB. I still have 2 ECBs left from my last trip that I have to use soon.

Kmart coupon event

I apologize for the delay in posting this, but I did go to Kmart for the Super Double coupon event on December 6th. I started at $90.00+ dollars before coupons, and only paid $45.24. I got a lot of stuff to add to my stockpile, but there were only a couple of things that I got for free, though:
Gummy Savers (2 bags)
Gillette Body Wash (1 bottle)

Friday, December 5, 2008

Pumpkin, pumpkin and more pumpkin!

The question was asked the other day: "What's for dessert"? My answer was, pumpkin pie, pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin bread, pumpkin muffins and lemon meringue pie. Anyone notice a trend?

I have been doing a poor job of keeping up with my posts as I do frugal stuff, I'm sorry. I started my pumpkin extravaganza right after Halloween. We had three pumpkins for Halloween, 2 that I purchase from Whole Foods ($2/$10) with a coupon that was floating around back then and 1 from a local pumpkin patch. Last year we carved our pumpkins too early, so by Halloween night they were a gross moldy mess, so this year I was going to wait. Well, I waited so long that we didn't carve them at all.

I had been reading different blogs about cooking pumpkins to make puree and then using the puree to make all kinds of yummy goodies, so I did an Internet search to find a website with easy recipes since it was my first time cooking pumpkins. I found this one. I cooked the pumpkin in the microwave and froze the puree. I even roasted some of the seeds which are delicious.

I used their pumpkin pie (including crust) and pumpkin bread recipes, both of which turned out really good. I don't remember where I found the pumpkin muffin recipe, but I used this pumpkin cheesecake recipe. Everything turned out really good, except the muffins, because I ran low on puree and had to modify the recipe.

I will do this again next year.

Kmart Super Double - FINALLY!

I have been so frustrated reading all the posts about the Kmart double coupon opportunities especially since we don't have any stores around here that double coupons.

I heard an ad on the radio yesterday morning on my way to work and couldn't wait to get into the office so I could pull up the website to see if it was true. IT IS!

Kmart will be doubling coupons up to $2.00 through Saturday, December 6th. I'm working on putting together some deals with the advertised sales, items that I'm running low on and possibly some stockpile items.

I'll let you know how well I did.