Monday, November 30, 2009

Free Calendar, Clutch Photo Book, or Photo Cards

Today only! Another free photo gift deal is out there. Oh, by the way, I got my 100 free photoe cards that I told you all about and they are awesome!!! I still can't get over that deal! How many photo deals have you scored over the past few weeks. This is my fourth one. Starting now, December 1st (yes, I stayed up to do it at midnight!), go to the American Greetings website and click on the Photoworks icon. I think it was in the middle right-hand side of the page. You'll be asked to pick your gift and enter your email address. Hurry, they are only giving away 20,000. I just made an 11 x 8 calendar and it was also shipped for free. ($25 value) Yippy! Its going to be a Christmas gift for DVB since I still have him on my list. Hope you get in on this deal. Thank you Common Sense with Money!


Black Friday/Cyber Monday

I love to shop during Thanksgiving weekend. I love the chaos, adrenaline rush, and of course great deals in the middle of the night (while the kiddos and hubby are sleeping). I didn't camp out this year, like I did last and I'm glad because it was cold, windy, and rainy. It has been my tradition since I was a young girl shopping with my mom to go out on Black Friday to get great deals. I used to work Black Friday at the Gap for a season while in high school and college. I now love to go out since I can't make it out much with 3 little ones and DVB usually always takes the day after Thanksgiving off. He is glad to watch the kids for me. (I was thankful my newborn took a bottle for the first time while I was gone). I prefer going with a shopping buddy and for the past few years its been my sister-in-law Lindsay and this year it was Chanda. We first went out Thursday night to Michael's for about an hour to get 30% off our entire purchase, but I was disappointed as they no longer carry toys. No more Thomas the Tank Engine trains there. I did find some cute kiddie art sets though and some other things and got good deals. I slept from 2-3 am since I was up late researching the best deals online and in the circular. With water, coffee, snacks, layers of clothes, coupons, and circulars, Chanda and I first hit Kohl's for when the opened at 4 am. We got some great toy deals (50% off) there including a Leap Frog Tag system for only $29.99 and it went towards Kohls cash. Then we stopped by Walmart at 5:15, just to turn around and walk back out the door. What we wanted there was not worth waiting in the HUGE lines. I actually went back there late Saturday night and got what I wanted at the same Black Friday sale price. I used 3 of those handy dandy Hasbro and Playskool coupons that are floating around online to get 2 games and a toy for more than 50% off retail price! Food for thought- I read somewhere you should never pay more than 50% of the retail for a toy. Back to Friday...we then headed up to the mall. Some of the highlights: $207 worth of items at Bath and Body Works for $46.50, 25% off entire purchase at the Children's Place (bummed they didn't let me use the 20% off coupon in addition like they did last year) and socks were on sale 5 for $5 so they ended up being 75 cents each...I wish I would have gotten more, that's a better price than clearance; and my gift to myself, my Pottery Barn desk!!!! Pottery Barn, never, ever has good deals, except on Black Friday and the weekend following. The deal was get a $20 gift card for every $100 you spend. And we had a New Mover's coupon from our move this summer for 10% off any purchase. We had been holding onto for nearly 5 months now and I am so glad we did. It was due to expire on Nov. 29th and we were able to use it with the Black Friday deal to save extra money on our favorite desk. I am so excited about it! And now we have $120 PB gift card to use after Christmas. I was so thrilled they let us use both deals. Chanda and I avoided Toys R Us on Friday too because the lines were so, so long...people were lined up outside to get in at 10 pm on Saturday night. We started at 4 am and got back by 10 am...and I was pleased with the deals. Last year was a bit better, but that's ok. I only had so much time before I had to get back for the little one.

And now today's Cyber Monday deal. I got 6 great Leap Frog items from leapfrog.com on super sale (way, way, better prices than the same items at Kohls) and I signed up to be a Learning Path member and saved an additional 20% plus free shipping. The retail of the items would have been: $96.85

I got them for $41.60 shipped!!!! The order included 2 Tag books for my sons new Tag Reader system.

I got nearly all my shopping done over the past few days. The kids are all done and so are the nieces and nephews on both sides of the family. All that's left on my list is hubby and mother-in-law.

FYI: If you are in the market for Hasbro games, perhaps look at the prices at Toys R Us as they are on sale again this week and there is a Hasbro/Toys R Us specific rebate available for a lot of those games. I got some two weeks ago when they were on sale and giving away gift cards and I am eligible for $13 in rebates. The final price on some of them was $1.99.

What were some of your best deals if you ventured out for Black Friday????

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Free Photo Cards

So, I have read several blogs about this fantastic deal, and it may sound too good to be true, but it is absolutely no joke. This is just in time for Christmas! You can actually score 100 FREE PHOTO CARDS with free shipping too. The website is SeeHere from FujiFilm. Its actually a really great site. You can completely customize your cards. After looking over the different blogs and people's comments I went ahead and made mine. You have to do two separate orders to make the codes work. The first code is "newbaby" and the second is "freebies4mom11-09." Please note, you have to type in the codes, rather than cut and paste them. Also, the website is getting sooo much traffic that it is very slow. Everybody is jumping on this deal. I tried many times yesterday to do my second order, and couldn't get the site to work. This morning it worked like a charm. So, I got 50 super cute Christmas cards in my first order and then my second order included a variety (yes, you cam make different types-as long as the total is 50). So, I made 30 more Christmas cards, 12 holiday thank-you photo cards, and 8 birthday thank-you cards for my son to give out from his 4th birthday. Enter the code at the check-out and the discount will be reflected. I also appreciated that they didn't gather any credit card information since it was a free offer. $49 worth of great cards for free and free shipping. The first order I placed two nights ago, and I got my email that it shipped already. So, act fast, the freebies 4 mom code expires November 30 and it is now only good for the 4x8 size. Not sure when the other code expires. Have fun making some great cards! Also, don't get discouraged if the website is slow, expect that. Wake up early to make them for the site to work the best. Thanks, Money Saving Mom, Freebies 4 Mom, and Thrifty Living.

Oh, and you can get 100 free prints for signing up with SeeHere. I haven't made those prints yet. I understand they have to be in a separate order.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Walgreen's Money-Maker Deal

So, which store do you prefer...Rite Aid or Walgreen's? I am still a big fan of Rite Aid, mainly because they have so many total purchase coupons out there and they can be used AFTER all other coupons to maximize the deal. I had a not so successful trip (well, it wasn't too bad-but not has sweet as I would have liked) earlier in the week to Walgreen's, so I was just about ready to stick with Rite Aid only...until I found out about this deal.

Walgreen's had Glade aerosol sprays on sale for $.99 this week with in-ad coupon. Plus, there was another coupon in the November savings book for $1.00/2. And I used two manufactures coupons, one from Right at Home-an SC Johnson website (I recommend you sign up so you can get great coupons in your email) and one from the paper that was BOGO free. I purchased 6 sprays (all the coupons worked beautifully) and they ended up costing me only $.44! Yes, you read that right...44 cents! I don't even use Glade room sprays, but I will have fun giving them away to friends and family. And now the best part of the deal....I can now submit these purchases for the SC Johnson rebate that you can read about here. (Thanks again BA for the tip!) Because I purchased 6 qualifying items I will be eligible to get $10 back ($5 back for every 3 items you purchase-need to be separate transactions...thank you Walgreen's manager for printing me a second receipt for the deal). I will have made $9.66 on this purchase! Money for our upcoming Disney trip!!!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

$.47/ pound Turkeys at Giant

This is the week to pick up your turkeys. I already got one and will be getting the big one in the next day or too. This is a great price for a frozen turkey. Save even more with this coupon.

Acme-Best shopping trip yet!


Last night, I headed to Acme, with my circular, coupons, and calculator to take advantage of the great Catalina deal ($15 off next shopping trip with $30 purchase of select items). Thanks to the internet and blogs, you can literally find some many coupons and people who do the homework for you as far as coupon match ups. These two sites are helpful to me, Thrifty Living and Deal Seeking Mom. And of course, you can find tons of coupons on the internet from various sites like Coupons.com. Check out this post for match-ups. And I actually found there were two more match-ups as well. I found a $.75/1 from the Wish-bone website for dressing (printed two) and there was a $.75/1 for Breyers ice-cream a few weeks back in the Sunday paper coupons. (I had two of those as well). So after 4 transactions (I did the Catalina deal twice so I could use the $15 - 2 of them- for the rest of my purchases), I got all that you see above. There was a cereal deal too, if you buy three Kellogg's cereal-Mini Wheats were on sale and I had coupons-you got a free gallon of milk. Apples were on sale too.....6 pounds for $4!

I got $132.84 worth of groceries and only paid $22.50 out of pocket....a savings of 84%!!

I was very pleased with this trip as I was able to stock up on some items like chicken broth, cereal, flour, dressings, cake mix, and some other items are pantry was needing. I don't usually buy stuff like boxed potatoes, but they were virtually free and with lots of hospitality happening I thought it might be nice to have these on hand. We don't eat white potatoes here much at all, but other people like that stuff, so I purchased them. I can't make super gourmet meals all the time with 3 little ones at home, so sometime boxed stuff is nice to have on hand. :)

And, best news, everything worked out perfectly! I didn't have my kids with me, which made it go much smoother, since my cart was filled...thanks DVB for watching the boys! No trips to customer service this time. Yeah!

Acme is great because they double all coupons up to $.99. Even the ones from online. I literally had some many coupons for this trip to make it such a sweet deal. It definitely takes time and energy to pull this off, but its worth it if you can save quite a bit of money for your family.

Pumpkins!


I had several pumpkins left over from our Harvest Party that we hosted on Oct. 31st. Thanks to Money Saving Mom (highly recommend this blog), I got a great idea on how to use these cute little orange things...make my own pumpkin puree!!! I was so excited about this idea, as I love everything pumpkin, cookies, breads, cakes, etc. And to buy canned pumpkin can get expensive. So last week, with the help of two of my little ones, we set out to make our own pumpkin puree.

First, we cut them in half, and removed all the seeds (saved them for roasting and for planting next year).




Then we placed each half upside down in a little bit of water. I covered each baking dish with aluminum foil or a lid or dish towel (for microwave). I either baked them in the oven at 350 for over an hour, or put them in the microwave for 30-40 minutes.


When fully cooked, the skins literally slid right off!



Next I scooped out the pumpkin.


We put the pumpkin in the blender with a little bit of water and blended for 1-2 minutes until smooth and creamy.


Final results: 18 cups of pumpkin puree!!! After it cooled, I put two cups in each Ziploc bag and put them in my freezer.


That same day, I used some of the puree and made these delicious Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins! Now, can I go the whole winter without buying canned pumpkin? I hope so!