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Showing posts from May 9, 2010

Summer Reading Programs

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Our Sarah was fifteen months old when I started teaching her to ready with that "Your Baby Can Read" program. I got it before the whole thing was "infomercialed" into a $300 set...from an Usbourne Books gal and then made my own flash cards on my computer with clip art. Once a child understands the concept of the written word, their vocabulary and whole world just expand exponentially! Summer Reading Programs are a great way to keep that love of learning a books going for your kids in over the summer as they can earn free books and other fun stuff too! What is neat - you can "double or triple dip" by using the same weekly reading over several different programs. You can do a "google" search for different programs in your area -- I suggest starting with your public library! Ours has a different theme each year and a booklet that they get. Each week, you bring it back for a stamp and little gift, with a grand prize at the end of the 8 weeks. Our

Flax...the good, the bad and the ugly, LOL!

Flaxseed is one of those wonders of the natural world! What do you buy? Whole seed? Cracked seed? Ground seed? Oil? Whole seeds will keep for about two years, if in a cool area that does not expose them to light. Cracked seed a considerably shorter time and ground seed the shortest of all. You DO definitely need to grind them, as the hull is not digestible- unless you soak them overnight. enough to make them edible whole. I really dig putting them in bread, it's pretty awesome. Or most any other dough or batter based food...pancakes, muffins, crackers, waffles, scones, cookies. Toasting is fine too...you can sprinkle on yogurt, or even use in smoothies. I would NOT buy the ground flax as when grinding flax seeds, you should use it within 15 minutes as it loses it's potency quickly. You CAN have the ground seed by itself and not add it to anything but water: just add 1 or 2 tablespoons of to an 8-ounce glass of water and mix. Anything from a "Magic Bullet" to an o

This Week's Grocery Run

I did two transactions yesterday and stayed pretty close to what I said I was looking at. This is what I got: -4 Starkist Tuna @ 1.09 -2 Rhodes rolls ($2.29 each)(were $2.49) -5 Budget Meals @1.29 (hubby's lunch) -5 salmon portions @ 1.00 (were $1.50) -5 scallops @ 1.00 -2 Tilapia portions @ 1.00 -2 Drumstick frozen treats @ $2.50 (were $2.99) -3 V8 Fuision Juice @ $3.19 -2 skim milk @ $1.88 (2.05 normally) Coupons used: $.82 came off all budget meals as store promos...$1/5 budget meal (doubled), 2 Starkist $1/2 (doubled) 2 Rhodes $1 (doubled), 2 Drumstick $1 (doubled), 3 V8 Fusion $1 (doubled), my $3 off coupon from last week. Grand total: $18.62 out of pocket for $53.44 in groceries...that means I saved 65%. Not great compared to my other trips BUT I had planned to stock up on a bit of seafood. I thought the prices great and think we will see them go fairly high if they can't contain that oil spill...I can use one packet of scallops to make a seafood fettucini, or flake

Planning My Next Grocery Run

I checked out Copp's new flier and, even though they are doubling coupons this Saturday too, I am waiting until Wednesday. Here is what caught my eye for the week - I have to break it down into transactions yet, but you get the idea of what I'm thinking the hot deals are. :) Oscar Mayer Deli Creations Sandwich $2.00 Use $1/1 Oscar Mayer Deli Creations Sandwiches or Cracker Combinations May 2010 All You Magazine or $1/1 Oscar Mayer Deli Creations available after registering Final price: Free after doubled coupon ***Hubby likes this kind of thing in his lunch for work when we are out of leftovers/planovers. Roundy’s Jumbo Pack Drumsticks or Thighs $0.98/lb. (Limit 2 packages) Use in-ad coupon to receive sale price Final price: $0.98/lb. after coupon ***great price but, I hate dark meat. I will NOT be getting these, but wanted to point them out to you Fresh Pork Shoulder Butt Roast $1.28 (Limit 1) This IS fabulous for slow cooking, shredding and then mixing with barbecue sau

Birthday Deals

My friend Anne shared this list with me, it goes to show how you can really stack up goodies just for having a birthday! Thanks Anne! Enjoy the list everyone ************************ I made a list of the deals that I received via email or snail mail for my birthday recently. Thought that I would share it so that others can be aware of where they can sign up for the deals too. RESTAURANT NAME - OFFER Caribou Coffee - drink Denny's - grand slam Einstein Bagels - free bagel & schmear Moe's Southwest Grill - entree Baskin Robbins - free cone Texas Roadhouse - appetizer or sidekick of ribs w/ entree Cold Stone Creamery - Like it creation Ruby Tuesday - burger Arby's - swirl shake w/ purchase of roastburger First Watch - entree Logan's - nutter butter fudge slide w/ entree Orange Julius - 16 oz Julius fruit drink Rita's - bogo Smokey Bones - $5 off $15 Wingstop - 5 free wings w/ soft drink purchase Ben & Jerry's - free single scoop Buffalo

Making Your Hobby Pay!

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Hi. My name is Dannelle and I am a scrapbooker. (this is where you, my support group says "Hi Dannelle...") I picked an expensive hobby to enjoy -- between tools, paper and embelishments, it could run a person thousands of dollars a year! I am not that crazy, LOL! First of all, I have made it my "use it up" year. This does three things for me : 1) I will have less to pack! 2) I save money as I will only be buying adhesives! 3) I am more creative in how I use my supplies! That being said, I am the proud owner of a Cricut. (you fellow scrapbookers know what machine I am talking about). I have the original bug AND an expression. I also have 50+ cartridges for them to use - which also work with my Cricut Cake. (did I forget to mention that I have one of those too>?) I can proudly say that I have NEVER paid the full retail of $89.99 for a cartridge, in fact, the average price I have paid is about $24. How do you make your hobby pay for itself? Here is my way: I

Breakfast - it's the most important meal of the day!

We've all been told that and it turns out that it is true! After a good night's rest, we need a little fuel to kick our bodies into gear. What do YOU do for breakfast? We are usually oatmeal or cold cereal and a piece of fresh fruit or some V8 Fusion Juice (cut 50/50 with water). I have stockpiled quite a bit of dry cereal and am finally starting to see the bottom of the pile - we are down to 12 boxes. (From a few months ago when I was up to 40!) It is time for something new in our house...and I have 16 canisters of Quaker Oats staring at me every time I open a certain cupboard. I am going to make Granola and Breakfast Cookies later this week! Most of the ingredients I have on hand...I just need to pick a few things up tomorrow when I hit the grocery store. I need the Craisins, Apricots, Almonds and will get a baby food serving of the Prunes for this. Here is the breakfast cookie recipe I got off a friends blog: Cran-almond Breakfast Cookies 1 1/2c Brown Sugar 3c rolled oa

Clothing Resale Shops

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We were taking a stroll downtown today and checking out what stores were on the main drag. Fairly new to the collection was a clothing resale store and we went in for a quick look-see. Not impressed. Think as little as five years back, when the economy was stronger. Retail stores were almost out of seasonal items well before the season...and resale shops were you best bet to get gently used merchandise at a bargain. Maybe you took a special trip to the outlet mall. Times have changed. Name brand stores like Macy's, Sears, Kohls, etc practically give the stuff away now with the constant string of sales in hopes to get the customers in the door and part them with a bit of cash. You can buy a brand new item for less than what a consignment store sells it for - and often, for a lot less than you could even buy the fabric for! Why pay $30 for a used dress when you can get a new one for $20? I have gotten dress suits for $15! Add a few $3 dress blouses to change the look of the outf

Birthday Clubs

I told you a few months ago that we were averaging $3-400 a month eating out...we still eat out, but have become much smarter about it! Who says there is no such thing as a free lunch? We got a post card in the mail today for a Rocky Rococo Birthday Club member offer for Sarah today. She has almost two months to bring in the card and get a FREE slice of their pizza. What little kid doesn't like pizza? Of course, she won't be going their by herself and they are banking on 1-2 parent meals with it...I like their fresh salad bar! Our local coupon book had a special for a B1G1 salad bar trip...SO, she will get her free pizza sometime over the course of the next month and we will have a half price salad. That is just one place! Do you know how many restaurants have similar offers? ALL of them! Think of your favorite places that you like to eat at...now do a quick check for their websites. Everyone from Culver's to Lawrey's has a special customer offer or Birthday Club t

Public Library

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The memories of childhood and the local public library...my Mom would walk there with us each week, we would go to the children's area and enjoy story time while she perused the book section for the latest mystery or thriller. Sometimes, we would be herded into a room about the size of a closet, and they would show a movie on the wall! I remember the card catalog...where I would hunt for more books once I found a favorite author! How about the table where you could listen to records with the earphones that were so heavy that you could barely wear them? Afterwards, we would get our tan cards out to present to the librarian so she could stamp the card in the back of our books and we could take them home for a week! We would delightfully walk home with them and enjoy until it was time for the next visit. Today's libraries are so much more! First of all, there is no huge card catalog! Replaced by the amazing little computers that link to all the other libraries in the neighboring

Meal Plan Monday!

Here is the plan for the week...after looking at what I have in the freezer, and what I did NOT make during the disaster of a migraine that I had last week and what is on our family calendar. Breakfast is usually the same: cold cereal* or oatmeal* with a piece of fresh fruit (apple, strawberries, grapes or banana). I plan to make Breakfast Cookies (from a friend's blog) towards the end of the week to use for next week! Lunch is either leftovers, peanut butter* & jelly sandwiches, quesidillas, or cold plate with sausage or diced chicken - cheese* - crackers* & fresh fruit. Dinner: Monday - left overs/fridge clean out Tuesday - Meatless Meal: Spaghetti* and garlic toast* Wednesday - Baked Chicken, seasoned rice* and green beans* Thursday - Frozen pizzas* Friday - baked fish, glazed carrots*, pan fried potatoes* Saturday - left overs/fridge clean out (they fend for themselves as I have a crop to go to!) Sunday - Homemade Pizza* * Denotes items that were free or almost fr