Albertson’s I’ve Missed You!

I haven’t been in Alby’s in a while since their sales haven’t been too hot.  I went tonight to take advantage of their really good sale that ends at midnight (thank you list makers for posting the following week’s ads so I can preview and see if the sale is running for another week or not!)

Great sale got me 14 pasta sauces, 1 Pam cooking spray, 1 Ready Whip, 6 Chef Boyardee products, 6 Banquet sausages, 14 tub margarines, 3 cube margarines,  and some other stuff.  I did 3 transactions and hardly used any coupons.  This was a sale where if you purchase $25 in certain products (before coupons) then a catalina (coupon that prints out and looks similar to a receipt) will print out that is good for $10 off your next purchase.  Well I used that $10 coupon to help buy an additional $25 of groceries and out popped another catalina.  I then used that new $10 off catalina coupon to buy all my regular items: milk, bananas, cheese, bread, baby food.

Next week I’m shopping at Smith’s in case you want a heads up of the really good deals.  Buy 10 participating items and get an instant $3 off AND a catalina (remember, the coupon that prints out and looks similar to a receipt) for $3 off your next purchase. 

Getting food storage is so much fun!

Smith’s Great Sale 2/2- 2/8

I got all this (100 items including the shrimp ring) for $71 OOP (out of pocket).  I’ve learned the sale cycles so I buy items when they are at their lowest price AND I do a clip-less coupon approach.  It’s easy, saves time AND more importantly it saves money!

I’m hosting a FREE Grocery Smarts class in my home at the end of February AND I’m feeding you!  What more could you want?  (I also have a toy room if you need to bring your little ones).

This trip I got charcoal for $2, bagged cheese for $2 a lb, sliced cheese for 49 cents, hot dogs for 39 cents, baby lotions for $1.50, and lots more!

In the past I’ve gotten jumbo packs of diapers for $2.50, salsa for 9 cents a jar,  tortillas for 10 cents, canned veggies for less than 30 cents each, packs of dishwasher tabs for less than $1 a box,  cases of bottled water for $1.79, hummus for FREE, cool whip for FREE, bags of shredded cheese for FREE, toothpaste and toothbrushes for FREE, deodorant for 25 cents, RoTel for 16 cents a jar, a box of copy paper for $5 (normally $50), a Sonicare electric toothbrush for $9 (regularly $49), and an entire pantry, freezer, and bathroom stocked up with items my family uses.  Oh, and I NEVER pay more than a $1 for a box of cereal (Kashi, Cheerios, Lucky Charms, Trix, or any kind)!

You too can learn the best deals and when to stock up on the items you use most.  Let me know if you or anyone you know is interested and I’ll get you the info.

January Food Storage Group Order

We’re doing food buckets and gamma lids and wheat grinders this month so spread the word!

Gamma Lid for Food Storage Buckets- coolest invention ever!

So our new ward gladly welcomes our food storage vision and put Mike on the preparedness committee only 3 days after we moved in (our records weren’t even there yet!).  So I’ll do my best to let you know about what we’re offering each month.  Email or leave a comment if you want anything and I’ll get an order form to you!

January 2011 Emergency Preparedness Group Order
 
 Money is due Sunday, Jan. 30th
 
Hand Crank Wheat Grinder (Hand Crank) $50.00- Create an infinite variety of new textures and flavors in home baking, cereals, snacks, beverages and desserts.
 
KTec Electric Wheat Grinder $165.00- Provides a quality grain / flour mill which will process all types of grains without killing nutrients and flavor.
 
5 Gallon Bucket (food grade plastic) $4.00- Stores food safely for long or short term storage
 
Bucket Lid (for long term storage) $1.50- Has an o-ring for an air tight seal
 
Gamma Lid $6.00 – Easily twists on and off buckets for quick access to stored food
       
Potato Slices (#10 can) $6.00- Rehydrate and use in casseroles and breakfasts! Each can makes approx 24 ½-cup servings
 
 Diced Potatoes (#10 can) $7.50- Rehydrates in about 20 min.  makes approx 24 ½-cup servings

Freezer Meal Group Swap #2

So it was swap day #2 today at Maggie’s house (took the pic from our cooking group blog).  My kiddos call her “food storage Maggie” since that’s what brought us together the first time!  Well getting all these meals makes me excited to keep on going with the group.  12 new and prepared meals each month!  I love it!

This past month I really wanted to attempt a pork loin roast with pears, but then I learned that you shouldn’t freeze meat, thaw it, then freeze it raw again so I didn’t want to break any freezer meal group rules.  I did cook up one of my 9 pound beasts in 2 crockpots and the raw meat, blood, smell, and everything related to it nearly killed me!  Yes, I puked many times in the kitchen sink, but the pork cooked up just fine and I turned it into the main stuff to make Cafe Rio burritos.  So now I have another 9 lbs of a long ole pork loin sitting patiently in the freezer waiting for its turn at freezer meal stardom.  So for sure I’ll do Cafe Rio burritos this coming month and my other meal will either be attempt #2 at a pork loin roast OR chicken chow mein (link fixed).

Deals for Dummies

So I ventured to Target this evening in hopes of finding another Leap Frog Tag Reading System for Josh and some other stuff and only got half of what was on my list.  I ended up buying 50 items and getting my $112 total down to $22.93!  I used 63 coupons!!  I think that’s a record!  I’d post a picture, but remember, the old laptop is out of service, the new laptop was returned for having a bad CD rom, and now my pc hard drive upstairs is going out too!

Here’s a little of how I work my coupon magic:

Tag Reading System on clearance for $29.99, but rang up $19.98 at check out.  I used a $10 off manufacturer coupon I printed off from their website AND a $5 off Target coupon for a Tag product.  This is called STACKING - when you use a manufacturer coupon + a store coupon for the same item. You can do this at grocery stores too!

Nextcare Bandaids (8 count) were on clearance for 68 cents.  I printed off  a bunch of $1.00 off coupons from their website that didn’t specify a size, so buy the smallest size to save the most amount of money (usually found in the travel/ trial sized section).  But Amanda, your coupon is more than the value of the product. This is called OVERAGE. That extra 22 cents went to pay down something else and make my overall bill lower.  Always make sure you have a FILLER- an item to make up the price difference.  I bought way more stuff than 22 cents worth so my overall total went down so I didn’t worry too much. Note: some stores will adjust down the price of the coupon to match the value of the item if the item is cheaper than the amount on the coupon. 

My total purchase was over $50 so the first coupon I used was a store coupon for $5 off a $50 dollar purchase.  Use these kinds of money off coupons first since your total is at its highest, then use your other coupons.  If you do it in reverse, then your total will be too low and you won’t get that free extra $5.00 off your purchase.  Make the free money work for you!

Here’s a list of what I bought:

Tag Reading System, 2 Aveeno baby washes, 2 Johnson and Johnson Buddy Wash Soap Bars, 3 Johnson and Johnson lotions/ baby washes, 6 paper towel rolls, 3 single toilet papers, 3 deodorants, 8 boxes of Kudos granola bars, 8 boxes of Pop tarts, 2 boxes of Kelloggs Yogos fruit snacks, 8 Nextcare bandaids, 4 packs of Bic pens, 1 box of Kotex pantyliners.

The free stuff I get (usually health and beauty items in the travel sizes) are great for overnight trips and also for storing in my backpack  that’s a 72 hour kit.  If there was ever an emergency I want to grab and go with my shampoo and stuff.  That’s a post for another time. Just think Hurricane Katrina!  Wouldn’t it be nice to have a bag to grab that already has your necessities in case you have to flee immediately?

Also, I’m always donating food to people and food drives and things like that.  Buying 8 boxes of Pop Tarts may seem excessive, but when 1 box cost me way less than $1.00 then I don’t feel so bad giving them away.  I also am a proponent of food storage.  There’s nothing more irritating to me than going to my cupboard and being out of an item.  (I did have to run to Smith’s twice last night for this very reason).  So, when things go on sale, I use coupons on top of these sales and stock up!  Think Hurricane Katrina again.  Stranded in your house with help no where close.  If you’ve got some comfort foods and regular everyday foods stocked up, you could easily survive a disaster.  Oh yeah, and non food items are important too!  Let’s not get stuck without toilet paper, diapers, wipes, or trashbags! 

Well there’s some info to let you think about. Any questions?  And just a heads up that Smith’s is having their caselot sales the 2nd week in September, yay!

Some Unfinished Projects, Finally Finsihed!

So my mom was in town last week so I recruited her to help me finish some unfinished projects so I could check them off my list. 

We spray painted a little entry table black and converted it into a work station downstairs.  The laptop sits on it now and the idea is to work at this little desk and file receipts into the file bin.

Thanks Lees for a real picture that isn’t churchy or of our family.  Such a nice peice of art work.  It matches our front room AKA the home teaching room since it’s all formal and as far in as the home teachers get!

We found some curtains in the clearance aisle in WalMart which saved us having to sew a curtain to go under the baker’s rack to hide the food storage buckets.  The spring tension rod was purchased the day before at Big Lots just for this project.

I finally sewed around the edges of the little characters on my dish towels so they wouldn’t peel off in the washer.

And I got a pair of jeans patched up and back into wearable condition. 

Oh yeah, it’s March so my mom and I marched right in to Mike’s office and took everything out.  We rotated his desk and he really likes it.  Now to go through all the stuff and put it back in or trash it or file it or…..

Oh it’s good to have some outside help to give fresh ideas and be excited to help with projects.

Kick Butt Alby’s Deals

The Great Albertson's Deal
The Great Albertson’s Deal

 

I was so excited for my purchases at Albertson’s today that I couldn’t wait to get the groceries in the house- I unbagged them in the trunk so I could take a picture!  I made it with 2 kids along for the ride.

I spent $40 and some change on all this!  I got those ice creams and the 3 Muskateers in the clearance section for $1, but they ended up being free with my last transaction, because I used a $10 off catalina.

Want to learn more and how and the ins and outs?  Go read about the “special list” that tells you what’s on sale and lets you print off coupons to save even more money HERE

I separated my groceries into 6 groups of 10 items to get the most bang for my buck.  I separated my coupons with a paper clip based on these 6 groups.  So coupons for transaction #1 were paper clipped together.  Coupons for transaction #2 were paper clipped together in their own little group.  Etc. Etc.

So, 10 items (all the same price for this buy 10 item sale to work) in group #1 were rung up by the very friendly teller.  I then hand her over coupons for only those items… easy to do b/c they were paper clipped together.  Yay, money from coupons starts coming off.  Pay her and out pops a catalina (coupon from the store you get at the register after paying) for $10 off my next purchase.

Well, next group of 10 items are rung up.  I hand over coupons (paper clipped together) and $ is deducted.  Then, I hand over that $10 off catalina coupon from my previous purchase and BAM -$10 off my total.  I think I spent $2.50 on this transaction.  Well, out pops another catalina for $10 off my next purchase.  Are you catching on?

Ring up next group of 10 items. Hand over coupons and watch my total go down.  Hand over catalina from previous purchase and BAM, another $10 dollars comes off!  Out pops another catalina for $10 off my next purchase.

Lather, rinse, repeat.  My last transaction didn’t have  items from the sale going on (purchase 10 select items get $10 off your next order), but they were free since I used the catalina from the previous purchase to knock $10 bucks off.  My last transaction was 10 bucks exactly, handed over catalina, no money owed!!

Are you with me?  I love this stuff.  And yay for free and super cheap comfort foods to help stock up the 3 month supply of foods my family will eat!

I did make a few mistakes- I am human!  I was supposed to use some Alby’s coupons and manufacturer coupons for double deals and get some free paper towels, but I sort of didn’t think things through in time to make it work.  Oh well!  My motto is: you gotta leave room for improvement =o)  Okay, one more look at the goods!

                    

 

I Heart TVP

So I was making a chicken with veggie and stuffing covering the top casserole for dinner last night and the chicken was showing no signs of thawing out!  (Yeah, I pulled cooked frozen chicken out of the freezer 10 minutes before starting on dinner!) My solution= ditch the chicken and throw in some TVP sausage from a can that’s in my food storage!!

Results= totally delicious and flavorful!  I will be making this again. And the spices are such a nice treat since I only use salt and pepper pretty much.  So daring, I know!

So I’m totally thinking this would be a great casserole for that sister in the ward who just had a baby!!!  I loved this dish and I think the rest of my ward would too!  I just can’t figure out why I never get called to take in a meal!?!  And I think Dream Dinners should start using TVP meats in their casserole dishes too! A lot more of us would try this dinner service if the price was cheaper.  The more cheaper chicken is called TVP people.

Read more about TVP meat here.  It’s pretty easy reading and just may change your mind about it.  I am half tempted to ditch meat altogether and go TVP all the way baby.

I’ve TVPed the sisters at Enrichment and put the sausage bits in a nacho dip and they loved it.  I’ve TVPed the missionaries and some friends who came over for breakfast for dinner.  Those scrambled eggs had TVP sausage bits in them my friends =o)  And now I’ve TVPed my family members who had no complaints about my casserole.

Who’s next?  Oh, maybe 2 wards at our Emergency Preparedness Fair next month (mwah ha ha ha)!