Thursday, August 30, 2012

Couponing 101: Terms

Having a conversation with a couponer can be confusing for the uninitiated. So here are some of the most common terms used here...but there is a whole lot bigger list over at Hot Coupon World.

  • BOGO = Buy One Get One...sometimes half off, sometimes free
  • B1G1/B2G1 = Buy # and Get # free or half off (or whatever the terms are)
  • Blinkie = Coupons found in the store from Smart Source - usually with a red blinking light
  • BTFE = Box Tops for Education (save these for your local school)
  • DND/DNT = Do Not Double / Do Not Triple
  • IP = Internet Printable
  • Peelie = Coupon pealed off a package
It's like a whole different language!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Are Kids Too Spoiled?

Am I the only mom who worries that she's spoiling her kid? I hope not. And I don't generally feel like my kid is a spoiled brat. He's not once thrown a tantrum in a store when I've said no to a toy or treat...I figure that's pretty good for an almost three year old.

But his room is overflowing with toys. And clothes. This kid dresses better than I do. And I'm sure we give him more leeway than kids got 50 years ago. Talking back was not tolerated by my grandfather. Marshal talk back to us often...usually not about important stuff.

Yes, we spank. I admit it and I'm not ashamed of it. Everything in moderation. Quite frankly, we haven't had to spank him very much. It was mostly when he didn't understand time outs and was getting into something dangerous (i.e. sticking his finger in an electrical outlet). Now he HATES being sent to his room and it's a much more effective punishment for him. But he still gets swats when he's particularly defiant.

This is an interesting article.
The saying-no and limit-setting challenges for parents of young children often revolve around food, sleep and media. “By setting limits, we’re teaching them what our values are and the way we think they can lead a happier, productive life,” Dr. High said.
It's so easy to want to make Marshal happy by giving him things or letting him do whatever he wants...and trust me we've fallen so many times. I think he is learning limits and boundaries and we do say no when we need to. But that smile is hard to resist!

I think kids can be too spoiled in ways that previous generations (like my grandparents) wouldn't have considered. Kids take up their parents time like never before. Our lives revolve around our kids. My grandparents certainly didn't rearrange their schedules for their kids. They were supportive parents but they were also busy running their own lives. Did kids have more freedom to just be?

Now we book them into all kinds of activities and events. I hope that I can resist the temptation to keep Marshal busy all the time...but balance that with not letting him get too bored that he wants to start trouble. :)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Albertsons Deals This Week 8/29 - 9/4

I don't know about you, but I see some pretty good deals this week.

Specifically on the back page of the ad...When you buy 10 participating items you get an automatic $5 off your order. Here is the scenario that I want to try...

2 x Best Foods Mayonaise @ 2.99 (22 - 30 oz)
     2 x $1/1 Best Foods Mayonnaise Dressing with Olive Oil (IP...Not sure where I found this one)
     2 x $0.50/1 Albertsons Coupon
     Final Out of Pocket = $1.49 each

2 x Hormel Completes @ $1.49 each
     2 x $1/1 IP
     Final Out of Pocket = $0.49 each

2 x Classico Pasta Sauce @ $1.49 each
     I think I have coupons for this somewhere but if not I'll adjust and get more Birds Eye.
     Final Out of Pocket = ??

3 x Mio Liquid Water Enhancer $3.49
     1 x $1/1 IP (Not sure if this is still available)
     1 x $1/2 IP (still available)
     Final Out of Pocket = $2.83 each

2 x Mt. Olive Pickles @ $1.69
    1 x $1/2 Hang Tag Coupon
    1 x $0.50/1 Albertsons Coupon
    Final Out of Pocket = $1.88 for TWO jars

1 x Birds Eye Steamfresh Veggies @ $0.99
     No coupons...but we do use these
     Final Out of Pocket = $0.99

For me these are great deals and the best use of the Buy 10 and get $5 off deal. If you got some of the less expensive items (i.e. buying more Hormel meals at $0.49 instead of Mio Liquid Enhancer) your out of pocket will be even lower.

Also, in the ad, is Kraft Sliced Cheese for $1.23 (already an amazing price) AND there are $1 off coupons to make them ONLY $0.23. Limit 2. I also have an Albertsons coupon for $0.50 so at least one of mine will be totally free. :) I LOVE free.

Also, Nabisco crackers (Ritz, Chips Ahoy, Wheat Thins) are $1.37 when you buy 3 boxes and there are several different coupons out there. I found a peelie on some Wheat thins for $1 off 2 boxes. So that would make three boxes a little over $1 a piece.

What deals are you looking forward to ?

Hurry - Free Suncare Kit

Hurry over to get your FREE Sun Care Kit.

It probably won't last long.

Chief for a Day 2012

My friend Raeann sent me an e-mail a few days ago with a link to the event "Chief for a Day" ... noting that it was free and open to the public. What better event to take Marshal pony rides, a helicopter, fire trucks, and all sorts of law enforcement people and vehicles. Pure heaven!

Staying Cool

Pony Rides

Practicing to be a Fireman!

Scary small talking police car

Ice cream kind of day with goofy mommy

Daddy's favorite picture

This event wasn't just for kids to have was to honor those special kids who have either a terminal illness or a chronic disease. Those kids are TOUGH and so sweet. 

Here's the State Patrol Chief for a Day:

If you want to donate to this great cause, check out their Facebook page.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Curious George? Why Yes, Thank You!

Head on over to Target and get 15% off Curious George books. Marshal loves that funny little monkey!

Some of the books are really ends September 8. These make great birthday gifts and Christmas is only four months away! :)

Coupon Savings - Walgreens, Target, Fred Meyer 8/26/12

Sunday is supposed to be a day of rest...and I fail miserably every single Sunday. If God wanted me to rest, he shouldn't have invented coupons! hee hee

My first stop, before anyone else was awake, was Walgreens to try out the Kraft Catalina NOT try this at home. If you are a new couponer this deal with frustrate the heck out of you. Some folks are reporting that they aren't getting the Catalina at the end of their order. I didn't have that problem. But the Kraft dressing was ringing up full price even though it was supposed to only be 2/$4. I was over charged by over $7 and had to go back later to get it fixed...also not fun.

The deal finally worked. I got everything pictured above, plus some Scotch pop up tape, for less than $13 and two Kraft Velveeta Shells & Cheese not pictured. The Stayfree were free (but also weren't ringing up correctly so had to be adjusted). I used the $10 catalina from the Kraft products to purchase the Cortizone, cotton balls, q-Tips, and four suckers. 

I'll be headed back to Walgreens later this week to get some more FREE Velveeta Shells & Cheese. 

Then I went to Dollar Tree to pick up newspapers...Dollar Tree JUST started taking manufacturers coupons as of Sunday. I expected it to be insane...but I was actually the first person to use coupons there. Woohoo! I win!

I didn't clear the shelves...I got two Dial soaps for $0.65 each, plus my three papers.

After church I clipped coupons for a bit and then headed out again....starting with Target.

My first two orders had me spending about $20 for everything. I loved the deal on the Method cleaning solution...regular $3 something and I got each one for $0.69! The Starkist pouches (ready for sandwiches) were $0.44 each. The Hershey's Simple Pleasures were free. I love free. 

My final deal at Target actually paid me!

Then on to Fred Meyer where I needed a few groceries but also was excited because their Glade candles were 50% off...$1.69 a piece. I had an e-coupon for Buy One, Get One (BOGO) free plus a bunch of other coupons for $1 off each candle. All told, I spent $0.69 on each candle and I got 12 of them. LOVE the Glade candles...they smell SOOOO scrumptious. 

The Classico sauce was $0.19 and the Palmolive was $0.61.
Thank goodness I love going to grocery stores. Target is my Nirvana. =) I spent less than $100 today (quite a bit less...closer to $60) on everything from all three stores. Not too shabby.

Hurry - BumbleBum Car Seat at Target Plus $5 Gift Card

Only a couple days left to take advantage of this gift card deal with a BumbleBum Booster Seat ($5 gift card with purchase) and it's only available online. Also, be sure to add one or two more items for that free shipping over $50 offer.

Deal available until August 29, 2012.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Amazon Wooden Art & Craft Supply Box - Only $9.59

Hurry over to Amazon to score this great Wooden Art & Craft Supplies Set for only $9.59. Super great deal at 78% off!!!

But hurry because Amazon deals like this tend to sell out or increase in price as they are discovered. Plus, it's eligible for free shipping.

This would make a GREAT Christmas or Birthday gift...or just something fun for you!

The case contains: 24 colored pencils, 24 oil pastels, 24 large watercolor, 3 mixing palette trays, 2 drawing pencils.

*** Amazon prices can change quickly, so check the price BEFORE you click to buy! ***

Better Than Free (StayFree) at Target

Several blogs have posted about free Stayfree pads at Walgreens and Fred Meyer today. Walgreens has them on sale for $1.99; Fred Meyer for $2... and there was a $2 coupon in today's paper.

I got two things at Walgreens but I'm so glad I saved my other three coupons. They were completely out at Fred Meyer but the other crazy coupon people in the area clearly didn't notice the Target deal.

Buy 3 Stayfree pads @ $2.89 a piece = $8.67
Subtract 3 x $2/1 Coupons = $2.67 + Tax Out of Pocket
Get back a $5 Target Gift Card
Come out Ahead about $2

So take that Fred Meyer shelf clearers! You got yours for free...I made $2 on mine. :)

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Being At Peace

The last few weeks I've been struggling...trying to figure out what I'm supposed to do. With Marshal. With work. What direction does God want me to go? It's been tearing at me ... I've been stressed out and frustrated.

I tend to want to plan things and for some reason God just doesn't want to cooperate with MY plans.

Finally I realized that I'm worrying too much. All of this will work itself out and I don't need to force it in one direction or another.

My Loves

Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth. Psalm 46
He is in charge. It's not my will that shall be done...trying to plan will only stress me out.

So I will simply do my best and continue praying that God will show me his desire for our lives.

Sunday Coupon Preview 8-26-12

Not sure if buying a newspaper will be worth it on Sunday?

Plan ahead ... here's a sneak peak. Thank you Sunday Coupon Preview!

Just remember that coupons can be regional, but this should give you a good idea as to what's coming in our area.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Hurry and Print Kraft Coupons

Labor day approaches and now there are some GREAT coupons to match up to sales that are sure to be here to prepare for Labor Day picnics.

Kraft has posted coupons for Oscar Meyer, Velveeta Mac & Cheese, Capri Sun, Mayo, Shredded Cheese, and more.

Click on the Printable Coupons link above and sort by grocery to find them (I found them on page 4).

One of these days I'll figure out how to link directly to the exact coupon. :)

Is It Necessary to Expose Kids to Mean People?

In my continued debate (internal and external) on whether to home-school Marshal I'm having many conversations with different people. Almost everyone is against it, except one of my friends who I highly value.
Marshal with his friend Maddie - being home schooled with her three older siblings.

It's not that I don't value other people's opinions, but if you have never home schooled before how can you really have an informed opinion? My friend is successfully homeschooling four little tykes...well, only one is really "little"...ages 3 to 13. Or maybe the oldest is 12. And by successful I mean that they are grades above where they'd be in public school.

I was talking recently with Marshal's child care provider - who loves him like a grandma and has watched him since he was three months old - about the fact that my friend is inviting us over to "home school" a couple of hours a week to get a feel for it and see what it's all about.

Her response was that kids need to be exposed to the "bad" people. Life is hard and they need to have the experiences with liars, bullies, etc. so they know how to deal with them in the future.

Really? Is that REALLY necessary?

Why do I want to subject my young child to other people's bad behavior? How does seeing other people behaving badly teach him how to behave properly? This about sums up the logic...(my emphasis)
"...public school children are confined to a classroom for at least 180 days each year with little opportunity to be exposed to the workplace or to go on field trips. The children are trapped with a group of children their own age with little chance to relate to children of other ages or adults. They learn in a vacuum where there are no absolute standards. They are given little to no responsibility, and everything is provided for them. The opportunity to pursue their interests and to apply their unique talents is stifled. Actions by public students rarely have consequences, as discipline is lax and passing from grade to grade is automatic. The students are not really prepared to operate in the home (family) or the workplace, which comprise a major part of the "real world" after graduation.

Homeschoolers, on the other hand, do not have the above problems. They are completely prepared for the "real world" of the workplace and the home. They relate regularly with adults and follow their examples rather than the examples of foolish peers. They learn based on "hands on" experiences and early apprenticeship training. In fact, the only "socialization" or aspect of the "real world" which they miss out on by not attending the public school is unhealthy peer pressure, crime, and immorality. Of course, the average homeschooler wisely learns about these things from afar instead of being personally involved in crime or immorality or perhaps from being a victim."
To's a big duh.

I remember my secondary education vividly from third grade forward...starting in fourth or fifth grade I was a bully. I had bully friends. We were horrible. And I didn't start off as a bully...I learned how to be a bully by watching my friends.

He's a smart kid already...I'd rather nurture his intellect and coach him through tough times directly rather than trying to guess what's going on in a classroom. Or trying to un-teach bad habits picked up from other kids.

Target Daily Deal - 40% off Levi's Men's Collection

Stock up and save on Levi's Men's Collection...40% off!

And, as always, spend $50 and get free shipping!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Benefits of My Job - Not Just an Income

Saturday was the State Picnic for Aflac in my state...and even though it was almost a two hour drive one way it was so worth it! We drove up to Lord Hill Farm in Snohomish, WA and my favorite part of the day was the Pedal Boat Ride. Marshal had an absolute blast!

Don't push me in daddy!

Peaceful Views

Discovering Tether Ball

Making Friends in the Bouncy House

I couldn't help noticing it was the boys playing with the kitchen toys.
Even though I struggle with whether I'm supposed to be home with Marshal or at work...I do enjoy most aspects of my job. Especially the aspects that let me play with my family!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Shop Early and Save on Handcrafted Jewelry

If you are thinking about jewelry as a gift for Christmas...or maybe someone's birthday is coming up soon...start planning now. I know when I wait until the last minute for a gift I usually end up spending more than I wanted to!

And if you use the coupon code BLOGGER you'll get free shipping from my Etsy shop!

Copper Chandeliers - great for a younger gal or just a young at heart gal!
Swarovski Crystals with Sterling Silver Posts - Comfy and Sexy
White Wine Swarovski Crystals with sterling Silver Leverbacks
Dainty Apricot - Smooth Round Freshwater Pearl Discs with 14k Gold Fill Leverbacks.
I just love earrings...they fit everyone and don't require you to know what size someone wears!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Recent Deals at Walmart

Emergency in the Casto household...hubby was out of creamer! Oh how did he manage to survive the two days it took me to get him some?

Thankfully I had several coupons for Baily's Coffee Creamer. It's only $1.88 at Walmart and with a $1 off coupon I got 4 of them for $0.88 each!

There are currently Mott's coupons for $1.00 off one making them $0.98 at Walmart. (Click the Printable link above to find this one.)

The Johnsonville sausage patties are new and for a whole big box of them, regular $6.98, minus a $2 printable coupon, I'll try them for $4.98. That's a lot of meat and hubby likes meat. This coupon is also available above.

I saved exactly $10 on this Walmart order.

Target Daily Deal 8/21/12 - Plan Ahead for Halloween

Today's Target Daily Deal...

Boy's Deluxe Mario Costume...planning for Halloween. :)

Monday, August 20, 2012

Savings at Target - Saving Over $110

I had SOOOO much fun at Target on Sunday. Checking Facebook on my phone paid off big time...saw a post by one of my favorite savings gals who pointed out a great sale on Lunchmeat, Kraft Singles, and Mio Water Enhancers. She also pointed to a new coupon over at Coupon Network for $1 off one Oscar Meyer* and $1 off one Kraft Singles*. AND there is a coupon for $1 off Mio Water Enhancer* which hubby has decided he likes.

The bread and cheese weren't just on sale...but if you buy two you get FREE bread. And I love free. The Mio deal was buy three and get a $5 gift card.

I got four free loaves of bread (good bread...not the cheapy stuff) and spent $14.32 for six things of Oscar Meyer lunchmeat and two large packages of Kraft Singles cheese (hubby likes them). Oscar Meyer lunchmeat is $2.99 at Walmart typically (the cheapest I can find) and the Kraft Singles are generally at least $3 or $4 for the size they are selling. The bread is usually about $3. So, using coupons and getting free bread I saved *at least* $22 just on these items alone.

The Mio deal netted me two $5 gift cards. I paid $2.79 per Mio...$16.74 for six of them and I earned $10 in gift cards, which I applied to another order later in the day.

Some of my other favorite deals...

Disposable BIC Razors
Papermate Pens

Kids Toothpaste ($0.28)
Fruit Snacks ($0.50)
Schick Hydro Razors ($3.99 after $4 off coupons) - buy two get a $5 gift card

Using my $20 in gift cards I was able to get my allergy pills (6 months supply - $35.99) as well as a Phillips Grooming Tool ($14.99) and a couple other items for a total out of pocket of $35!

I saved over $110 between the three different orders I did. Fun times!

* Click on the red Coupon Network banner on the right hand side to get these coupons. You can print two of each coupon. 

Friday, August 17, 2012

Do You Need Life Insurance?

Before I became an agent with Aflac, my instinctual answer to "Do you need life insurance?" would have been...of course, everyone does. 

Now, I would depends. 

First, why do you think you need life insurance? Second, what kind of life insurance policy do you think you need? Third, how much do you need?

In my opinion, almost everyone should have at least enough money when they die to pay for a funeral. The average funeral cost is around $6,000 and it has been rising every year since 1960. Of course, if yours will be an extravagant party you might want to plan for more.

Other than for funeral expenses, people typically need life insurance to cover the expenses left behind for their loved ones.

If you own a home and have a family, you need to have enough life insurance to cover those expenses. Some people also want to have enough to cover college expenses if they die while their kids are young.

My own father had enough life insurance that my mom was able to move us closer to our family, buy a new home, and a new van. It really took the financial burden off of her, allowing her to make decisions that benefited our family. 

If you're 65 with no kids at home and you own your own home you probably don't need a large life policy. I don't think it's a good idea to have a large life insurance policy as a means of inheritance for your family. 

Thankfully, Aflac only sells two types so I don't have to know about all the different kinds of policies out there. I get to focus on Whole and Term. Even then, I find there are many people who don't know the difference between the two.

My co-worker Rachel has a great analogy.

Whole life insurance is like owning a home. It's "yours" as long as you live (and you make your payments/property taxes, etc) and traditionally builds in equity. It's an investment for most people. One of the benefits, like home ownership, is that you can borrow against a whole life policy's cash value once it has built up enough. Whole life is always more expensive than Term policies.

Term life is like renting a home. It's only yours for a set period of time...after which your landlord (or insurance company) will likely raise your rates if you want to keep your policy. Most younger couples with kids pick a 20 or 30 year term policy because it is much less expensive than a whole life policy. After those 20/30 years, they may not need to cover the same liabilities. Their kids should be moved out, through college, and they may even own their home with no mortgage payments. 

Once that Term is can elect to renew at a higher rate or stop your policy.

There are other kinds of life policies (i.e. Universal) but I don't know a lot about those. 

This is obviously going to vary based on your needs as identified above. I personally have enough so that if I were to pass my husband would be able to take time away from work to figure out what he's going to do...and for him to pay for a full time nanny, which he would need if he remained in his current career (which has required night and shift work). He needs much more coverage though because if he passed away I'd be in big trouble as he is the primary earner in our family. 
"insurance is intended to provide the income you are not able to provide due to an early death; it is payable only if you die. A separate savings element, possibly in the form of the accumulated cash values in the insurance policy, is needed to cover such expenses if you’re alive. People with children should have a minimum of $200,000 per child in life coverage in addition to their other needs."
Life insurance shouldn't (in my opinion) be treated as an investment...ESPECIALLY a term policy. You can only cash in if you DIE! It's just one aspect of your financial planning for your future.

This article is also great as a resource.

* I am NOT a financial advisor. I do sell life insurance policies through Aflac and am able to consult intelligently about those particular policies. =)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Pit Bulls - America's Sweethearts

Apparently, "Pit Bulls" (which is a ubiquitous term for many different dogs) used to be a very popular breed in America

"During the first half of the 20th century, Pit Bulls were the closest thing the United States had to a national dog.  They were featured on U.S. recruiting posters in World Wars I and II, prominently featured as corporate mascots and cast as the ideal family dog in television and movies."
I have yet to meet a "mean" Pit Bull but I admit I'm very cautious around them. And I would be very nervous for Marshal to be around one...even if I knew them well.

Even though I know in my head that a Pit is no more vicious as a breed than Huskies (who CAN be mean if not raised properly), I've obviously been affected by the media's portrayal (my entire life) of Pits as scary, aggressive, dangerous dogs.

Any dog can be dangerous. If you don't train and exercise a Siberian Husky, they can be incredibly damaging and potentially aggressive...and Huskies have VERY powerful jaws. Maybe not as powerful as Pit but strong enough to snap bones.

I would love to adopt a Pit, but honestly I don't know that I'd ever be able to get myself to relax. The potential for all that power to turn and bite scares me for my son. It's not logical and it isn't even a fear shown true by statistics. But it's still a fear I have.

If we didn't have Marshal, or if he were older, I think I'd be more okay with it. And if we raised one from a puppy it would make me feel better too.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Albertsons Savings Trip

Before heading to the gym, I ran to Albertsons to get some of the deals I'd scouted last night. I saved 56% on my bill and got FREE toothpaste, pasta, and two tooth brushes.

The yogurt was $0.33 a piece. The candy was cheap too...$0.19 a piece! The skittles are going on a trip with five kids tomorrow. :)

I'm trying to stock up on soda as much as possible...Labor day should bring some great sales and then it generally isn't on sale again until Memorial day.

The string cheese was $1.99 (a huge savings ... at Winco, the cheapest I've found it, it's $3.68).

All in all I was thrilled with my out of pocket of $43 for over $100 worth of groceries.

This round UP thing is awesome...I hope they do it more often!

Is Single Motherhood Something to be Celebrated?

We all grow up in different situations. My father died when I was eight and my then single mom raised my brother and I...she never dated. Not once. I've never seen her date anyone - even after we both left the house.

She worked full time as far as I can remember - except she was generally able to work her schedule around our school and sports. She is a highly educated woman who has worked as a Registered Nurse since before I was born.
Mommy and Me.

It still wasn't easy for her though and both my brother and I recognize the void that having our father die left in our lives.
Daddy's Girl

Some people want to redefine what "normal" is and what, to me, is the logical definition of a family...having two parents (a father and a mother) will always be the best situation for kids. Did that definition make my own non-normal family bad or strange? Of course not.

Obviously there are going to be situations when a mother and a father are horrible parents and the kids are better off with someone other than their own biological parents (one of my friends is fostering kids in this situation...the poor little girl would scoop out her poopy diaper...because she didn't know an adult would change her...think about that for a second).

But if all things are equal, I believe a mom and a dad are going to be the healthiest situation for kids. Moms bring special things to kids...I know when Marshal falls he ALWAYS wants his mommy. Even though I'm not the most nurturing or sympathetic (sometimes I tell him to suck it up) he still wants the "mommy" touch instead of daddy. Other times, he needs his father much more than mommy.

Having a father is still important, no matter what people try to say otherwise. I know bashing guys is all the rage and I've found myself falling into that trap. Making jokes about dumb guys is PC, but a guy makes a crack about a dumb woman and heads will roll. Apparently, all guys are good for is money...

"Young men need jobs so they can pay child support ..."
Say what?
Not a perfect family. Not even a remotely "normal" family.

As the child of a single mother, I do think that society is worse off if we encourage single mother hood as something normal and okay. Kids need stability - not rotating "father" figures as this particular woman seems to insinuate is okay.
In fact women move in and out of singleness, married parents break apart, men and women live together without marrying, spouses or partners die, romantic attachments form and dissolve. 

We just seem to be desperately trying to establish a non-normal as normal in society and I find it kind of disturbing.

And the phrase "Me thinks thou dost protest too much" also comes to mind. It's good to read I'm not the only one who finds the article in defense of single mother hood slightly disturbing.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Round UP and Save at Albertsons 8/15 - 8/21

I'm SO excited! Starting tomorrow Albertsons is "Rounding Up" all coupons under $1 to the nearest $1.

So, if a coupon is $ rounds up to $1!

If a coupon is under $0.25 it a $0.15 coupon would be $0.60. But I can't remember the last time I saw a coupon under $0.25.

Some of the deals I see so far...

Frigo String Cheese - $2.99
$0.40/1 Coupon (Insert)
Rounds up to $1/1
Final Price = $1.99 for 10-12 oz pack

Colgate Toothpaste 6.4 oz - $0.99 with In Ad Coupon
$0.40/1 Coupon (Insert) or $0.75/1 Coupon (Insert)
Rounded up to $1/1
Final Price = FREE!

Pepsi Soft Drinks - 3 for $11
$0.55/1 Peelie Coupon (found on package)
Rounded up to $1/1
Final Price = 3/$8 ($2.67 / pack = $0.22 a can)

Yoplait Yogurt Cups - 10 for $5 ($0.50 each)
$0.40/6 Printable Coupon
Rounded up to $1/6
Final Price = $0.33 per cup

Other things I'm going to check while there...

Extra Gum - I have a coupon for $0.50/2 which would make it $1/2...possibly cheap gum...and my favorite brand.

Challenge Butter - Printable Coupon for $0.55/1, Rounded up to $1/1...possibly good priced butter if on sale

See anything else?

It's a Classic Ponzi Scheme with Government Backing

Ponzi schemes are illegal...except when run by the government.

Ponzi scheme investment scam by which early investors are paid off from the contributions of later ones, 1957, in ref. to Charles Ponzi, whoperpetrated such a scam in U.S., 1919-20.

Social Security taxes are taken out of your paycheck if you are a W2 employee. We've heard for years that it is a "safety net" for people when they are done working...that the money we put in is a "savings" that will help us when we retire.

I started working when I was 16. My Social Security statement comes every once in awhile and supposedly I'm due to get at least $1,500 a month when I retire. I consider it a blatant lie...and wishful thinking if I believed it.
"People retiring today are part of the first generation of workers who have paid more in Social Security taxes during their careers than they will receive in benefits after they retire. It's a historic shift that will only get worse for future retirees, according to an analysis by The Associated Press."

By definition, the original "investors" into Social Security got a greater payoff while the rest of us at the "bottom" of the pyramid get screwed.

Obviously, the Social Security program either needs serious reform or should just be scrapped. It was never intended to provide for our retirements. It was meant for widows. Now people treat it like it's their guaranteed retirement income. Nothing could be further from the truth.

People need to learn how to prepare and save for their own futures. Even after the massive losses the private sector received in the last few years, most people are still "ahead" if they've been investing over the long term. My own investments dipped quite a bit but are steadily increasing (I have a fairly low risk tolerance so my investments are pretty conservative).

My vote would be to scrap social security for all new people entering the work force...but I realize the government still needs the poor saps at the bottom of the pyramid to continue paying for those currently at the top. It's a hopeless cycle that only benefits politicians who try to buy our votes with promises of "reform". *sigh*

Monday, August 13, 2012

Albertsons Savings - $48 for $12

Nine boxes of name brand cereal.

Three things of Mio.

Retail price at Albertsons - over $48.

My out of pocket...$12.40.

Doublers are awesome!

Save 20% on Baby Clothes & Shoes

Pick up some great deals at Target - Spend $75 and get 20% could score a lot of clothes when you combine this deal with clearance items. This skirt is only $3.50!

Sometimes I wish I had a little girl. =) Just to dress her up...and then I realize that I'd go broke buying cute clothes!

Spend $75, Save 20% on Baby Clothing and Shoes

Saving $268 at Fred Meyer

I went on a little shopping spree on Saturday at Fred Meyer...partly to get out of the house and have some alone time before hubby went to work...partly to let them daddy and Marshal have some bonding time...and mostly to score some great deals.

As I mentioned earlier, Fred Meyer is having a great promotion where we get the employee discounts. This includes Fred Meyer/Kroger brand items. Pair this up with clearance items, which are 50% off the lowest marked price, and we're talking some great savings.

My favorite scores...

  • Columbia kids jacket - reg. $45 - clearance $29.97 - 50% off = $14.99 - Employee discount 20% ($3) = $11.99 SCORE!
  • Thomas the Train Farm Set (Fischer Price Little Tykes) Reg. $29 - clearance $22.37 - 50% off = $11.19 - Employee Discount 15% ($1.68) = $9.51 This is for Marshal's birthday.
  • Carter's Toddler Boots - Reg. $35 - clearance $29.97 - 50% off = $14.99 - Employee discount 20% ($3) = $11.99! These are for winter as they are a size too big but he definitely needed them. 

Those aren't even half of the great deals I got, including clothes for me.

I hit the clearance bin for canned foods and got some great deal on refried beans, Campbells soups, and Nalley Chile. It all tastes the same, dents or not.

Everything I bought, aside from some candy bars (*grin*) we needed and will use. Especially Marshal's clothes since I'm going through and getting rid of lots of 2Ts. All of his jackets are too small, so the jacket was an especially nice find.

In all I spent $195 on $463 worth of groceries, clothes, and toys...a savings of over 57%. I am pleased!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Double Coupons at Albertsons 8/12 - 8/14

We live in the "land of no doubles" here in Washington state so when Albertsons offers coupons that will double three coupons up to $1.00 it can make for some great deals.

Select General Mills Cereals 
Sale $1.88 each
Buy 2 Honey Nut or Multi Grain Cheerios = $3.76
Use $1/2 off Two and a Doubler = $2/2
Final Price = Two Boxes for $1.76 ($0.88 each)

There are a couple different General Mills coupons you can print (look at the tab above and click on Print Coupons to access) which make for some great deals on Cereal.

The sale also includes Lucky Charms, Cocoa Puffs, Golden Grahams, and Reese's Puffs (hubby's favorite).

Nature Valley Granola Bars
Sale 2 for $5
Use $0.50 off two and a Doubler = $1.00/2
Final Price = 2 for $4 ($2 a box...cheaper than Walmart regular price)

Kettle Chips
Sale Price 2/$6
Use $1/2 and a Doubler = $2/2
Final Price = Two bags for $4 ($2 a bag)

Do you see any other great deals to grab?

Back to School and Shoe Shopping - A Great Match for Famous Footwear BOGO + 15% Off

This post brought to you by Famous Footwear. All opinions are 100% mine.


Can you believe that the school year is almost here?!? Marshal will be three soon and we have a couple of years before thinking about school, but one thing we do still have to do is buy him shoes. I swear his feet grow an inch a week!


The good news? BOGO + 15% off Famous Footwear CouponFamous Footwear is having a Buy One, Get One Half Off AND get 15% off! Famous Footwear gives you great brands at great prices with hundreds of name brand shoes and thousands of styles.


I know how many pennies we are pinching at my house…stretching a dollar is one of our highest priorities. At the same time I want the best quality for my money. This great offer by Famous Footwear gives me the best of both worlds – a great discount and great quality shoes.


If the shoes you want aren’t in store, they will even order them for you online and have them delivered to your home.


Famous Footwear stores are easy to shop in...get in and out quickly (definitely a plus if you're dragging the kiddos with you!). This company respects your time and knows how many errands there are to run this time of year. Get in and out in 20 minutes with three pairs of new shoes! A great discount and a quick stop makes me very happy.


Not only can you get 15% off and Buy one, Get one Half off – if you join their Rewards Program you can increase that 15% to 20% off!


Being a Rewards Member is FREE and besides the increased discount, you'll get the following:

  • Accumulate points to earn certificates up to $100 a year.
  • Discount offer just for signing up.
  • Other special inside discounts and perks.
  • Earn 1 Point for every $1 you spend in-store or online.


Head over now to print off your coupon BOGO + 15% off Famous Footwear Coupon, and enroll as a Rewards Program member, and redeem it in-store between 8/2 and 8/18.


Yay shoes!

Visit Sponsor's Site

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Fred Meyer Deals Starting 8/12 through 8/17

Don't forget to print off your Friends & Family pass - thank you to The Coupon Project for sharing!

This pass gives you (on TOP of clearance and sale prices):

20% off Apparel, Shoes, Cosmetics, & Accessories
15% off Home Department (Home, School Supplies, Toys, Sporting Goods, Auto & Garden)
10% off Home Electronics
10% off Nutrition Center
10% off Private Brand Products in our Food Department (Including Fred Meyer, Kroger, Big K, Private Selection, Country Oven, Mountain Dairy, and more)

This coupon started August 10 and is good until August 15. It can also be used more than once...the cashier has to give it back to you after you use it.

So...use the coupon to make your groceries cheaper!

These are my two favorite deals:

  • So Delicious Shelf Stable Coconut Milk @ $2.00 - $1/1 coupon - 10% = $0.90!!!
  • Silk Fruit & Protein @ $1.99 - $1/1 coupon - 10% = $0.89!

The Coupon Project has put together great deals (including prices using the Family & Friends discount where applicable).

JBLM Air Show 2012

A couple of weekends ago hubby, Marshal, and I braved the crowds to check out the Joint Base Lewis McChord Airshow. We went two years ago and had a blast, but Marshal wasn't even quite one year old at that point and while he did enjoy himself there were only so many things he could participate in.

I am amazed to see what a difference two years can make.

Now, at almost three, he was definitely more interested. We had an absolute blast watching the planes and helicopters flying over our heads. There were historic planes there, including a B2 bomber flying overhead on their through doing practice maneuvers. It was awesome!

Thunderbirds - They were AMAZING!!!
Look out bad guys!

My son the future pilot?

It was a lot of fun, even with a semi-grouchy little boy.

They really do need to work on their logistics for getting people in and out. They only had six or seven check in stations where they were searching all bags and wanding every person who came through. We met a couple who waited over an hour in line just to get in. We got there a little later than when it opened so it only took us 20 minutes or so.

On the way out we waited over an hour to catch the bus back to our car. It was hot and I was sun burned. Marshal was a total champ though and we managed to keep him entertained. We got on the bus (a yellow school bus) with standing room only and he thought that was the coolest part of the whole day and had the other passengers cracking up at his excitement.

Ah, youth.