Powerade at Macey's

Monday, August 31, 2009
Beginning this Wednesday, September 1, Macey's will have 32oz Powerade for .47 each! No coupons needed. Price good through Tuesday, September 9.

The case lot sales have begun!

Harmon's started their case lot sale today - check the list at GrocerySmarts for prices!

What's For Dinner?

Sunday, August 30, 2009
I can't tell you how often I ask myself this question and simply don't have an answer. Now, there are some things that I'm pretty good at, but menu planning just isn't one of them. I'm working on changing that - especially since I have all of this food storage in my basement telling me that there just isn't a legitimate excuse anymore for not having easy, home-cooked, healthy meals for my family. (I seem to be lacking the energy, creativity and organization skills necessary to pull this off right now...)

I am making a concerted effort to get better at this, and I was so excited when I got a copy of the latest KraftFoods Food & Family "magazine" in the mail yesterday. As I was flipping through it today, I got to a section called "1 Bag = 5 Nights". Here's what it said: "Shop once and solve suppertime for the whole workweek with one well-filled grocery bag that fits your budget too."

It's a list of 5 easy meals that you can make and then a printed shopping list that includes all the ingredients for those meals. (The "menu" does not include the ingredients for side dishes, however, but I'll take all the help I can get.) The best part, for me, was that a lot of the items were things I already had on-hand in my food storage.

I was even more excited when I went to the Kraft Foods site and found that they had quite a few of these weekly meal plans and recipes available online!

Go to the KraftFoods site HERE. There are various options for the "1 Bag, 5 Dinners" plans based on what proteins you'd like to include. Select from the sub-menus at the left-hand side of the screen to see all of the various options. (The one featured in the Fall edition of the Food&Family magazine is Bag 7 under "Chicken & Beef Bags".) Let me know what you think!

Some great finds at Target!

Saturday, August 29, 2009
Here's what I picked up last night at Target (available at the Target on 7200S and Redwood):

(2) Tide 2X with Downy (for HE washers) 150oz, on clearance 9.98 (7.98 after coupons)
(1) Bounce dryer sheets 145ct, on clearance 4.24 (3.24 after coupon)

I used (2) 1.00/1 manufacturer coupons for the Tide (from the P&G 8/2 insert) AND (2) 1.00/1 Target store coupons for the Tide (from the RP 8/23 insert), giving me a total of $2.00 off each Tide, and then (1) 1.00/1 coupon for the dryer sheets, from a home mailer back in January.

Total: $20.72

The Tide ends up being 5.3 cents per ounce, cheaper than even the best sales at both Albertsons and Smiths!

Don't let the "HE" designation on the detergent stop you from getting some at this great price, even if you don't have an HE machine - the bottle says that you can use the HE stuff in regular machines just fine. (The HE stuff is just formulated to not produce as much sudsing.)

And from Tide.com: "Our HE detergent is designed especially for HE washing machines - both front and top loading. If you have a non-HE washing machine (which is usually top-loading only), you can use HE detergent but it's not necessary. It won't harm the machine but you'll notice less suds."

They had several dozen bottles of the Tide left as of closing last night. They are on the back ends of the aisles up in the laundry/health/beauty section of the store. I think the P&G coupon expires on Monday, 8-31-2009.

And here's another great find at Target (thanks, Caralee!):

Bausch and Lomb Multi-Purpose Contact Solution, large bottles, clearanced to 4.88
Use: Bausch & Lomb ReNu MultiPlus Multi-Purpose Solution or ReNu Multi-Purpose Solution, 12 oz. or larger $1/1 (8-31-09) SS-5/17
You'll pay just 3.88 for each bottle!
However, please note that the coupon expires this next Monday (8-31-2009).

They are located on the bottom shelf at the back end of an aisle near the pharmacy.

Great shoe find!

Friday, August 28, 2009

I found these black men's wingtips at Target this morning in the 75% off section! They were 9.98!

There were about five pairs left (the Target at 7200 S and Redwood) - sizes 8 1/2, 12, 10, and I don't remember the other two.

No grocery shopping for a month...

Thursday, August 27, 2009
Could you do it?

Here's a LINK to an interesting story on CNN.com, and a LINK to a news article.

And here is the LINK to Kathleen's blog about her experience. Yesterday was Day 15...

Case Lot Price List

Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Case lot sales will begin very soon in Utah, and when all the stores are having their sales at about the same time, it can be hard to tell whether the case lot items are really a good price or not.

Here is a great POST from PreparedLDSFamily.blogspot.com discussing case lot pricing, and she has included a link to download an Excel spreadsheet where she has compared case lot prices from various stores from the last sales 6 months ago so you can get an idea of average prices and who has the lowest.

(Please note that the prices are from the previous case lot sales, and are not necessarily the prices that will be available for the upcoming sales, but they should give you a fairly close estimate for budgeting purposes.)

Don't forget your vitamins!

When planning for your food storage, don't forget about vitamins! They are especially important when you're under stress or perhaps not able to eat as much fresh dairy and produce as you might like, so definitely keep an extra bottle around. (Don't store too much because they usually only have a 1-year shelf life.)

This is a great week to add vitamins to your shopping list if you're headed to Smiths:

Disney vitamins, 50% off + 1.00/1 coupons from RP 8/23 (in last Tuesday's mail) or from GroupC at GrocerySmarts

Flex A Min vitamins, 50% off + 4.00/1 printable from GroupA at GrocerySmarts

NatureMade vitamins, 50% off + 1.00/1 coupons from SS 8/2

Osteo BiFlex, 50% off + 6.00/1 coupons from RP 8/2

What I'm Buying - Sunflower Market 8/26

Here's what I picked up at Sunflower Market today:

(10) packages 93% super lean ground beef, on sale 1.97/lb [about 10 pounds total]
(2) bunches seedless grapes, on sale .69/lb
(2) cucumbers, on sale .50 each
(4) yellow squash, on sale .99/lb

No coupons used.

Total: $27.42

What I'm Buying - Smiths 8/26

Here's what I picked up at Smiths this morning:

(2) Pillsbury Grands! biscuits, on sale 1.49
(1) Quaker Quakes, on sale .99
(2) Kroger worchestershire sauce, on sale 1.19
(1) Betty Crocker cookie mix, on sale 1.99
(6) Betty Crocker fruit snacks, on sale 1.99
(1) gallon whole milk, on sale 1.67

I used (1) 1.00/2 printable coupon for the biscuits (see GroupA at GrocerySmarts), (1) .40/1 coupon for the cookie mix (SS 8/9) and (6) .40/1 coupons for the fruit snacks (SS 8/9 and also GroupA and Group B at GrocerySmarts). I then had a .40/1 e-coupon come off for the cookie mix, a .40/1 e-coupon come off for the fruit snacks and a 1.00/2 e-coupon come off for the biscuits, and (1) $5 off for the Mega Event promo. I then used (1) 3.50 Catalina coupon that I got last week from buying fruit snacks.

The e-coupons are at Shortcuts.com.

Total: $8.51 + $3.50 Catalina coupon good off next shopping trip (from buying the fruit snacks)

What I'm Buying - Albertsons 8/26

Here's what I picked up at Albertsons this morning:

(I did two separate transactions because of the Catalina deals...)
Transaction #1

(4) Chef Boyardee pasta, on sale 1.00
(2) Hunt's ketchup, on sale 1.00
(3) Hunt's Manwich sauce, on sale 1.25
(2) Keebler graham crackers, on sale 2.50
(2) Keebler sandwich crackers, on sale 2.00
(10) Hunt's pudding packs, on sale 1.00
(1) gallon whole milk, on sale 1.89 (free after coupon)
(2) bunches bananas, .64/lb (.41 after coupon)

I used (1) Buy 3 Get 1 free coupon for the pasta, (1) Buy 2 Get 1 Free coupon for the Manwich sauce, (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the ketchup, (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the sandwich crackers, (1) Buy 3 Get 1 Free coupon for the puddings, (1) .35/3 coupon for the pasta, (1) 2.00 off milk when you buy 2 sandwich crackers, (1) 2.00 off fresh fruit when you buy 2 graham crackers, and (1) $5 Catalina coupon from last week.

The pasta, Manwich, pudding and ketchup coupons were from the AllYou magazine, August edition (available at Walmart). The 2.00 off coupons for milk and fruit were from a Keebler coupon booklet in store displays recently (look for a big yellow cardboard bus). The 1.00/2 coupon for the sandwich crackers was from the RedPlum/Kellogg's coupon insert from 8/2, and the .35/3 coupon for the pasta was from the 8/9 SS.

Total: $19.69 + 2 $5 Catalina coupons good off next shopping trip

Transaction #2:

(5) Marie Calendar's frozen entrees, on sale 3.00 [1 went to work with husband]
(4) Keebler Fudge Shoppe cookies, on sale 2.50

I used (2) 1.00/2 printable coupons (see GroupA at GrocerySmarts) and the (2) $5 Catalina coupons from the previous transaction.

Total: $13.75 + (2) $5 Catalina coupons good off next shopping trip

I had planned on getting the Marie Calendar's Pasta al Dente meals, because I had coupons, but they did not appear to be included in the sale. Oh well.

So, I finally gave in...

Monday, August 24, 2009
...and joined Facebook! :) For those of you who are on fb, is there enough interest for me to start a group for posting the weekly grocery shopping pictures? (I have posted the last few, but when I put them in my album, I think it posts them to everyone on my friends list and I doubt they all want to see my crazy grocery pictures...so I'd like to find a way to post the pictures for only those who would like to see them. I figured if we did a group, then others could also post their pictures as well, and post ideas about good deals, etc. - what do you think?)

Fabulous pasta salad recipe!

I tried THIS recipe yesterday, with the Wacky Mac pasta and Brianna's salad dressing that I picked up at Maceys on Friday.

It was awesome - loved it! I'm definitely going to keep this recipe around. It was really easy, and other than the apple and grapes, everything could come from food storage. (I second the suggestion to use the Brianna's brand dressing - it was amazing and I will definitely be watching for it to go on sale so I can stock up - YUM!)

And if you go with the Brianna's dressing, get it at Maceys: I checked prices this morning, and it was $4.39 at Albertsons, $3.89 at Smiths, and $2.99 at Maceys (all regular price).

Preview List for Albertsons 8/26 to 9/1

Here is a LINK to Shelley's *preview* list for the upcoming week at Albertsons. (List made available at PinchingYourPennies.com - thank you Shelley!)

This is a good week to stock up on school lunch snacks (pudding cups, Rice Krispie treats, crackers) as well as canned tomatoes, ketchup, cooking spray and vegetable/canola oil.

Food Consumption Around the Globe

Shannon sent this link to me - it is a photographic representation of the average weekly food consumption of different families around the globe.,29307,1626519,00.html

And here is an accompanying article that appeared in Time magazine:,28804,1626795_1627112_1626671,00.html

The standard American diet definitely stands out...where's the produce? I know I really struggle with this - and the worst part is, fresh produce can be so much more expensive here in our country that the cheap, highly-processed alternatives that are so widely available on store shelves.

I would love for you to post suggestions on incorporating more fresh vegetables and fruits into meals - I definitely need help! I buy fruits and veggies, with great intentions to actually eat them during the week, and then the next week rolls around and I find myself throwing it all out because I forgot to eat it and now it's all rotten... what a waste of money and certainly a waste of good nutrition!

What I'm Buying - Maceys 8/21

Friday, August 21, 2009
We had a great trip to Maceys today (except for my kids beating each other up in the car cart...):

(1) 8th Continent soy milk, on sale 2.59 (.59 after IP coupon) [not pictured]
(2) A1 steak sauce, on sale 2.79 (.79 after MQ coupon)
(1) Brianna's poppy seed dressing, 2.99
(16) Jell-O gelatin, on sale .88 (.55 after IP coupon, .63 after MQ coupon)
(3) Lyn Wilson flour tortillas, on sale .79
(2) Wacky Mac pasta, on sale .99
(2) cottage bread, on sale .99
(1) Wonder hot dog buns, free with $25 purchase
(1) Western Family jumbo franks, free with $25 purchase
(2) bunches bananas, on sale .59/lb [not pictured]
(2) bags red seedless grapes, on sale .89/lb
(1) bag green seedless grapes, on sale .89/lb
(3) heads green leaf lettuce, on sale .69/head
(1) super-saver pkg boneless skinless chicken breasts, on sale 1.69/lb (+ 2.00 off in-ad coupon, made it 1.16/lb!)

IP = Internet Printable coupon
MQ = Manufacturer coupon

I used (1) 2.00/1 printable coupon for the soy milk, (2) 2.00/1 coupons for the A1 sauce (SS 8/16), (1) 1.00/3 printable coupon for the Jell-O, (5) .50/2 coupons for the Jell-O (SS 8/16), and (1) 2.00 off purchase of chicken when you buy 2 A-1 steak sauce coupon (in Maceys weekly ad flyer).

Total: $37.22

What I'm Buying - Albertsons 8/21

(2) Albertsons brand swim diapers, clearanced to 3.29
(2) Lifesavers hard candy, on sale 1.00

Total: $9.09

Albertsons has begun to clearance their Equaline brand for non-food items. There are lots of items that are 50% off. There are also many name-brand non-food items that are being clearanced at 27% off right now.

What I'm Buying - Smiths 8/19

Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Here's what I picked up at Smiths this morning:

(2) gallons whole milk, on sale 1.67
(6) 2-liters of 7up (supposed to be on store special for .50 each after [3] 1.00/2peelie coupons, but they rang up different and ended up being .61 each...oh well)
(2) Trix cereal 10.7oz, on sale 1.99 (1.49 after promo, .39 after coupons)
(2) Betty Crocker supreme brownie mix, on sale 1.99 (1.49 after promo, .62 after coupons)
(6) Betty Crocker fruit snacks, on sale 1.99 (1.49 after promo, .99 after coupons)
(2) Wanchai Ferry dinner kits, on sale 3.49 (2.99 after promo, 1.89 after coupon)
(1) Betty Crocker mashed potatoes, on sale 1.50 (1.00 after promo, .60 after coupon)
(3) Hamburger Helper, on sale 1.39 (.89 after promo, .39 after coupons)
(1) Betty Crocker Cookie mix, on sale 1.99 (1.49 after promo, .69 after coupons)
(1) FiberOne Bars, on sale 2.49 (free after coupon from Smiths mailer)
(2) Quaker Chewy granola bars, on sale 1.99 (1.49 after promo, .99 after coupons)
(2) Pillsbury cinnamon rolls, on sale 1.49 (.99 after promo, .59 after coupons)
(2) Pillsbury Grands! biscuits, on sale 1.49 (.99 after promo, .49 after coupon)
(2) Yoplait FiberOne yogurt 4pk, on sale 2.49 (1.99 after promo, free after coupons)
(2) Yoplait GoGurts, on sale 2.49 (1.99 after promo, 1.19 after coupons)
(2) Green Giant steamers, on sale 1.69 (1.19 after promo)
(3) pkgs New York steak, 2.99/lb (rain check from July sale - each pkg was just under $10)
(1) bunch bananas, .59/lb
(1) KrogerValue russet potatoes 10lb, on sale 1.79
(4) English muffins 6pk, on sale 1.00

I used coupons (or rain check) on everything except the milk, bananas, English muffins, potatoes, Betty Crocker potatoes and Green Giant steamers. I also got (3) $5 instant savings for the MegaEvent promo.

Total: $67.46 + got $3.50 catalina coupon good off next shopping trip (from buying the fruit snacks)

What I'm Buying - Albertsons 8/19

Here's what I picked up at Albertsons today:

(2) Hefty trash bags 28ct, on sale 5.99
(2) Hefty EasyGrip cups 9oz 50ct, on sale 1.67
(2) Hefty EasyGrip cups 12oz 30ct, on sale 1.67
(2) Hefty bowls 50ct, on sale 1.67
(6) limes, on sale .16 each

I used (2) 1.00/1 coupons for the trash bags and (3) 1.00/2 coupons for the bowls and cups. I also used a $5 catalina coupon from last week.

Total: $14.48 + got a $5 catalina coupon good off next shopping trip + 50 bonus Box Tops for school

Great deal on chicken!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Ream's (Salt Lake City locations) has boneless, skinless chicken breasts at 1.49/pound starting Wednesday! If you buy a 40lb box, you'll get it at 1.40/lb (it comes out to be about $60).

I think that several other Associated Foods stores will have a similar deal this next week, so check your ads.

UPDATED: Macey's locations are included in this deal.

The Order in Which We Should Prepare

Monday, August 17, 2009
"And see that all these things are done in wisdom and order; for it is not requisite that a man should run faster than he has strength. And again, it is expedient that he should be diligent, that thereby he might win the prize; therefore, all things must be done in order." - Mosiah 4:27

The leaders of our Church have counseled us to start small with our food storage, and then build it up as money, resources and local ordinances will allow. Here's a good pattern to follow:

  1. Emergency preparations and 2-week water supply: Have some basic first aid and emergency items available in easily accessible locations of your home. This may include things like a basic first aid kit, fire extinguisher, candles and matches, flashlights, copies of important documents or a basic 72-hour kit. It's also important to have some water stored. Start with 3 gallons per person, and work towards 14 (that's one gallon per person per day for two weeks).

  2. Three-month supply: Augment your current "pantry" with extras of the items you use regularly, like salt, flour, sugar, canned goods, dry goods, and frozen items. When you make out a weekly shopping list, consider buying two of each item instead of just the one that is needed - that way you'll have an extra on hand. Also include household and health items in your 3-month supply, things like toilet paper, paper towels, toothpaste, soap, laundry detergent, etc. Unless you have a lot of extra space at your house though, it may not be practical to store more than a 3-month supply of most things, and that is perfectly fine!

  3. Long-term supply: After you have gotten together a 3-month supply of your everyday items, begin to work on acquiring and storing for longer-term needs. These should be the basic grains and other items that can help you meet the daily nutritional requirements that your body needs. Start with only the very basics (wheat, rice, flour, beans, sugar, salt, powedered milk, oil) and add to it as resources allow. But only store those things that your family will eat - if you don't like wheat, don't store wheat, or store very little. Make rice your main grain instead, or plan on lots of beans. Make sure these items are in long-term storage containers that will protect your investment, and store them in the coolest, driest place in your home. Start with a six-month supply, and work towards having enough for one year.

  4. The extra mile: After you have acquired a three-month supply of the everyday items and a one-year supply of the nutritional basics, if you so choose, and if money and space permit, you may opt to work towards a full one-year supply of your most used items (assuming they have a one year shelf life) - for example, beginning to store more than a 3-month supply of laundry detergent, canned soups, ketchup, etc. It is entirely up to you what you choose to store and how much - it will depend on your individual and/or family needs.
I do just want to mention that while all of these physical/temporal preparations are very important, spiritual preparation is the most important of all. None of your food storage can be taken with you when you leave this earth, but your faith and testimony and knowledge of our Heavenly Father and His Son and the Plan of Salvation certainly can.

Week 21 - Assignment

Friday, August 14, 2009
I'm feeling a bit at a loss as to what direction to take the 3-month supply assignments. Last week's assignment didn't seem to be very popular.

So, this week's assignment is this: Please leave a comment (anonymous if you wish) letting me know what kinds of assignments you'd like me to create as we work on food storage. Are we moving too fast - assignments too frequent? What kinds of assignments would be most helpful to you?

(If you don't want your suggestions posted in the comments, you may email them to me directly - ducklette at gmail dot com.)

Great program for your pet!

Thursday, August 13, 2009
The Humane Society of Utah is offering discounted pet microchip implants starting Tuesday, September 1, and running through the month of September. The microchip implant will cost $15, no appointment needed.

This is a great way to provide a "safety net" for your pet(s) in the event that you are ever separated. Even for indoor-only pets! There are many stories of lost pets following floods, earthquakes, hurricanes, wild fires, etc. Having a microchip implant for dramatically increases the chances of being reunited with a missing pet.

Here is a LINK to the story on KSL.com.

I just took one of our indoor-only cats to the vet today because of a limp, and they asked me if she had a microchip. I thought, "Why would an indoor-only cat need an I.D. microchip?" But when I read this story tonight, I thought more about it and remembered some of the news reports about all of the missing/homeless/displaced pets that are found after natural disasters and how the shelters have a hard time reuniting them with their owners, and I can see where this would be a very valuable tool in that type of situation. So I think I will be taking my two furry friends in to have these implants - just in case.

And while we're talking about pets - don't forget to include them in your emergency preparations! Keep a small ziptop baggie of pet food and some extra water with your 72-hour kits, and you might consider storing a portable kennel/carrier near your kits in case of evacuation.

"Twenty pounds of brown sugar..."

Well, unlike in Anne of Green Gables, I actually ended up with 25 pounds - but here it is in all its glory!

I got the 25lb bag of brown sugar at Costco a few weeks ago, and then packed the sugar into quart-sized mason jars this morning. I then used my FoodSaver and the jar attachment to vacuum-seal the lids on. And voila, I have my year's supply of brown sugar! Well, maybe not a full year's supply (we eat a lot of oatmeal), but close. I'll have to look over the math and see if this is enough or not...

Anyway, I ended up with 14 quarts worth, plus a little left over.

Counsel from the Prophets

"As we have been continuously counseled for more than 60 years, let us have some food set aside that would sustain us for a time in case of need."

(Gordon B. Hinckley, "The Times in Which We Live", Ensign, Nov. 2001, p. 73)

"The Lord has urged that his people save for the rainy days, prepare for the difficult times, and put away for emergencies, a year’s supply or more of bare necessities so that when comes the flood, the earthquake, the famine, the hurricane, the storms of life, our families can be sustained through the dark days."

(Spencer W. Kimball, The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, p. 374)

"The best food storage is not in welfare grain elevators but in sealed cans and bottles in the homes of our people. What a gratifying thing it is to see cans of wheat and rice and beans under the beds or in the pantries of women who have taken welfare responsibility into their own hands. Such food may not be tasty, but it will be nourishing if it has to be used."

(Gordon B. Hinckley, "In the Arms of His Love," Ensign, Nov. 2006, p. 116)

Smith's List - UPDATED

Wednesday, August 12, 2009
The Smith's list at GrocerySmarts has now been updated to reflect the $2.50/$1.50 sale prices on the Kellogg's and Keebler products.

What I'm Buying - Maceys 8/12

Here's what I picked up at Macey's today:

(1) 20lb bucket dent corn, on sale 16.99 [not pictured]
(4) Gobstsoppers candies, on sale .79
(5) ears corn, on sale .20 each
(4) Lysol dual-action disinfecting wipes, on sale 1.77 (.77 after coupon)
(2) cucumbers, on sale .50 each
(3) tomatoes, on sale .99/lb
(2) Bar-S jumbo franks, on sale .89 each (.39 after coupon)
(2) Reach dental floss 55yds, on sale .97 (free after coupon)

I used (4) 1.00/1 coupons for the Lysol, (1) 1.00/2 printable coupon for the hot dogs and (2) 1.00/1 coupons for the floss.

Total: $28.56

FYI: Macey's now accepts internet printable coupons (as of August 1)! :)

What I'm Buying - Sunflower Market 8/12

Here's what I picked up at Sunflower Market today:

(2) heads green leaf lettuce, on sale .88
(6) roma tomatoes, on sale .99/lb
(1) bag iceburg garden salad, on sale .99
(1) bunch green seedless grapes, on sale .59/lb

No coupons used.

Total: $5.10

What I'm Buying - Smiths 8/12

Here's what I picked up at Smiths this morning -

Transaction #1:

(2) Kellogg's Rice Krispies cereal 12oz, on sale 2.50 (.50 after promo and coupons)
(2) Kellogg's fruit snacks, on sale 2.50 (1.00 after promo and coupons)
(2) Eggo waffles, on sale 2.50 (1.00 after promo and coupons)
(2) Keebler cookies, on sale 2.50 (1.00 after promo and coupons)
(1) gallon whole milk, on sale 1.67
(1) half-gallon chocolate milk (free after coupon)
(2) bunches grapes, on sale .99/lb
(1) Clean & Clear face wash, on sale 3.69 (1.69 after coupon)
(1) loaf Smith's white bread, on sale 1.25

I used (2) 1.00/1 coupons for the cereal, (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the waffles, (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the cookies, (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the fruit snacks, (1) free half gallon chocolate milk when you buy a gallon of regular milk, (1) 2.00/1 printable coupon for the face wash, (1) 2.00 off milk when you buy two cookies, (1) 2.00 off fruit when you buy waffles and (1) 2.00 off bread when you buy two fruit snacks. I then got (2) $4 off for the Kellogg's/Keebler promo.

So, total: $9.80

Transaction #2:

(1) gallon whole milk, on sale 1.67
(1) half-gallon chocolate milk (free after coupon)
(2) Keebler cookies, on sale 2.50 (1.00 each after promo and coupons)
(2) Eggo waffles, on sale 2.50 (1.00 each after promo and coupons)
(2) Eggo Bakeshop Swirlz, on sale 2.50 (1.00 after promo and coupons)
(2) Kellogg's fruit snacks, on sale 2.50 (1.00 after promo and coupons)
(1) bunch bananas, on sale .59/lb
(1) Smith's white bread, on sale 1.25

I used (1) free half-gallon chocolate milk when you buy regular milk, (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the cookies, (2) 1.00/2 coupons for the Eggo items, (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the fruit snacks, (1) 2.00 off milk when you buy cookies, (1) 2.00 off bread when you buy fruit snacks and (1) 2.00 off fruit when you buy waffles. I then got (2) $4 off for the Kellogg's/Keebler promo.

Total: $5.25

What I'm Buying - Albertsons 8/12

Here's what I picked up on my trip to Albertson's this mornning:

(12) Velveeta Shells & Cheese cups, on sale 1.00 (.50 after coupon)
(1) Velveeta 2lb, on sale 5.99 (4.99 after coupon)
(1) Velveeta 1lb, on sale 3.99 (2.99 after coupon)
(2) Philadelphia cream cheese spread 8oz, on sale 1.67 (1.17 after coupon)

I used (5) Buy 1 Get 1 Free coupons for the shells and cheese (I mis-calculated how many I would need, so I only had coupons for 10 instead of the 12 I needed to get to $25), (2) 1.00/1 coupons for the Velveeta blocks, and (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the cream cheese. I then used my $15 catalina coupons from my GM/Unilever promo last week.

Total: $3.08 + got a $5.00 catalina coupon good off next shopping trip + mail-in rebate form for $20 rebate from Kraft

Here is a LINK to the post on PinchingYourPennies.com about the Kraft rebate at Albertsons. I love getting free food! :)

Smith's Ad for 8/12 - PRICE CORRECTION

The prices listed for the Kellogg's/Keebler deal at Smith's are not correct for the Salt Lake area. They are 2.50 here in Salt Lake City (the 2.00 price is available in Lehi and a few other select stores that have a slightly different ad). So, instead of getting those items for .50 each, they will be 1.00 each.

I believe they will change the list later today, but just in case, I thought I would give you a heads up if you head out this morning.

What I've Been Up To...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009
I apologize for the lack of posts the last few days - things have been crazy around here.

Here's what has been taking quite a bit of my time the last few days:

We've run into a bit of a storage problem in the basement. As you can see, this is not the ideal nor optimal organization plan for your food storage...

We started out in February/March with some heavy-duty steel shelves from Home Depot, but quickly ran out of room. Then a month or two later we added some plastic shelves that we already had elsewhere, so we could stack up the lighter boxed stuff. But then we AGAIN ran out of room, and stuff started piling up on the floor (yet againt). So it was time to find some additional shelves. But the ones from Home Depot turned out to be such a pain to put together (it took hours), and they're not as adjustable as I'd like.

So we spent most of Saturday measuring and planning and pricing for new shelves. We finally ended up getting some at Costco - I love them! Here they are in all their glory:

The set on the left just got put up this morning. It's a huge mess right now (even worse than it was last week) because I'm trying to move everything around and get it organized. This is what my food storage looks like as of 10 minutes ago (I have a witness who can corroborate that). I have a "secret weapon" who is helping me, and once she and I get done, it's going to look AWESOME! But right now it is just giving me fits...seriously, I'm exhausted just looking at all the mess!

I will post more pictures and details once it is finally finished.

Recipe: Chicken Vermicelli

Friday, August 7, 2009

Here is the "original" version of this recipe:
(from Holly Clegg's Trim & Terrific Freezer Friendly Meals)
Makes 16 servings

1 (16oz) package vermicelli, broken into 3- to 4-inch pieces
1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 onion, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 (10oz) can diced tomatoes and green chilies
2 cups skim milk
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup copped, jarred, roasted red peppers
1 cup frozen green peas
4 cups cubed, cooked, boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 1/2 cups shredded, reduced-fat sharp Cheddar cheese
non-stick cooking spray*
1 gallon water*

Cook the vermicelli according to package directions; set aside. Preheat oven to 350F.

In a large non-stick pot coated with non-stick cooking spray, saute the green pepper, onion, and garlic about 5 to 7 minutes or until tender. Stir in the flour. Add the tomatoes, milk, and Worcestershire sauce, stirring until mixture comes to a boil and thickens. Lower the heat and add the red peppers and peas, mixing well. Add the vermicelli, chicken, and cheese, stirring to mix well and heat through. Transfer to a 3-quart baking dish coated with non-stick cooking spray.

Bake for 20 minutes or until bubbly.

Now for the "revisions":

*These items were not originally listed as ingredients, but are used in the cooking, so for calculating food storage, I have included them.

Let's take each ingredient separately -

vermicelli: not a problem here. Pasta should be included as part of your food storage, and it has a very long shelf life, so you can just purchase a package of vermicelli to store.

green bell pepper: you have a few options here. You can keep sliced bell peppers in your freezer and pull them out to use in recipes, or you can substitute dehydrated green pepper/red pepper mix. I do the latter, since it takes care of both the green and red peppers in the recipe. Since my family doesn't like a lot of peppers, I use about 1/2 cup of the dehydrated peppers, and reconstitute them for a few minutes in 1 cup hot water. (So I need to add 1 more cup water to the recipe.)

onion: I use dry minced onions in place of fresh in just about everything I make (it's what my mom used, so that's what I grew up learning to do), so here I just substitute 1/3 cup dry minced onions.

salt and pepper: I believe I've used about 1 to 1 1/2 tsp of salt in this before, and about 1/4 tsp pepper, so those need to be included in the revised recipe. Also, I use salt in the water when cooking the pasta, so that needs to be included, too (1 tablespoon).

minced garlic: Like minced onions, I use dry minced garlic in place of fresh garlic almost all of the time. In this case, it would be 1/2 teaspoon in place of 1 tablespoon fresh.

all-purpose flour: no change needed.

diced tomatoes and green chilies: again, no change needed, since this is an item that is canned and can be added as is to your food storage (RoTel is the major brand name for these). If you don't use these very often, you could use one can diced tomatoes with 1 4oz can diced green chilies.

skim milk: use powdered milk for this. If using the nonfat dry milk from the cannery, substitute 6 tablespoons milk powder and 2 cups water (add the extra water to the recipe). If using instant powdered milk (like the Carnation kind), substitute 12 tablespoons milk powder and 2 cups water.

Worcestershire sauce: no substitute here, probably an item you keep around the kitchen already.

roasted red peppers: as mentioned above, I just use the dehydrated green/red bell pepper mix from Morning Moos.

frozen green peas: you can stick with frozen peas, or could use canned peas here in their place.

chicken: if you want to go fully shelf stable, then substitute canned chicken here.

cheese: to go fully shelf stable, you could substitute cheese powder here.

So, here's what I would list for my "modified" version -

Chicken Vermicelli
Makes 16 servings

1 (16oz) package vermicelli, broken into 3- to 4-inch pieces
1/2 cup bell pepper mix
1/3 cup minced onion
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 (10oz) can RoTel tomatoes and chilies
6 tablespoons nonfat dry milk
2 cups water
1 tablespoon Worcesterchire sauce
1 cup frozen peas
2 pint jars cooked chicken
1 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1 gallon + 1 cup water
1 tablespoon salt
non-stick cooking spray

Preheat over to 350F.

Cook vermicelli in 1 gallon boiling water with 1 tablespoon salt. Rehydrate bell pepper mix in 1 cup boiling water for 5 minutes; drain. In large non-stick pot, mix together reconstituted peppers, onion, garlic, flour, tomatoes, powdered milk + 2 cups water, and Worcestershire sauce. Heat over medium-high heat until boiling; cook until thickened. Lower the heat and add peas, mixing well. Add vermicelli, chicken, and cheese, stirring to mix well and heat through. Remove from heat and transfer to a 3-quart baking dish coated with non-stick cooking spray.

Bake for 20 minutes or until bubbly.

Now, of course you don't always have to cook the recipe this way - sometimes you'll want to use the fresh ingredients. But using your food storage ingredients in these kinds of everyday dishes helps you to rotate your supply, and helps you get used to cooking with these other ingredients. Plus, sometimes its faster (like using minced onions and dry minced garlic - no chopping and no sauteing needed).

So, what do you think?

Coupon Preview for 8/9

Here is a LINK to the coupon preview at Taylortown Preview.

Week 20 Assignment - Three-Month Supply Recipes

I am a firm believer in the idea that the best food storage is the food storage you use on a regular basis. Using your food storage items in your everyday cooking teaches you to become familiar with how to cook with those items and provides an almost effortless way to rotate your storage on a regular basis.

In an effort to become more familiar with incorporating food storage into our everyday meals, your assignment this week is to make a list of your family's five favorite meals. Write them out in recipe form, including all ingredients and measurements - include everything needed to make that meal and make enough for your entire family. Then choose the one recipe that you think would be most suited to food storage, and post it here in the comments section (or email it to me). We'll then work on ways to make it "food storage friendly".

We'll use these recipes, and the others you put together in this assignment, in later assignments, so hang on to them!

How Do I Know What is a Good Price?

Thursday, August 6, 2009
When putting together your food storage, it's important to be able to get the best deals on the best food you can find. The cheaper you can get the food, the more you can get for the same price. But you don't want to sacrifice too much on quality just to get a good price, because sometimes quality can affect the shelf-life of products.

So, how do you know what is a good price for the things you need to buy?

Well, one of the best ways is to track prices using a grocery price book. It's basically a list of the items you normally buy, and how much you paid for them, along with the dates, store name and item sizes (for comparison). Keeping this kind of list over a period of time will give you an idea of how much the average price for an item is, and also let you see how cheap you might expect to get the item on a good sale.

There are lots of different possible formats - from handwritten in a notebook, to maintained electronically in a spreadsheet or on a web page - and it just depends on what you like best.

Here is a LINK to the one I maintain - it's in Excel format (or PDF format HERE). Feel free to download it and use it, add to it, modify it, etc.

Here is a LINK to the price book Shelley at PinchingYourPennies.com uses to determine the star ratings for sales prices.

And here are some additional samples and more information:

Article on GetRichSlowly.org

Article at Stretcher.com

Article at UncommonWayToWealth.com

So, how do you use a price book? Well, every time you go to the store, write down in your price book the date, store name, item, item size and price you paid. Do this for all of the things you commonly buy on a regular basis. Try to track prices for at least a month. You can either do this at the store (if you carry a paper price book with you) or you can do it at home using the receipt. [Actually, my most valuable price book info recently has come from this blog - sometimes I don't get around to updating my spreadsheet for several weeks, and then I lose receipts or forget prices or stores or dates, etc., so I've actually been able to go back through the blog posts and find the info I needed so I could add it to my Excel file - so see, even a blog could serve as a price book!]

In my price book, I've tried to keep track of a general "baseline" price for standard items, usually the current Walmart or Costco off-the-shelf price, and then the 5-star prices from the grocery lists. I don't always write down every time an item is on sale, just when it's a really good deal. Or I'll keep baseline prices for items I only buy occassionally, to help me determine if, when I need to buy it, the price I find is a good one or whether I could just get it at Walmart or Costco at their everyday price for cheaper.

I actually find myself referring back to my price book for comparison prices on things like paper towels, shampoo, toiletries, etc. Especially on toilet paper and paper towels - it seems like every store has a different standard "size" (for example, Charmin TP comes in regular, double, big, mega and jumbo rolls, depending on which store you're at). It's hard to tell what a good price is when the sizes are all different - so I keep track of those sale prices and also the size, and I calculate it down to price per unit (square feet for toilet paper and paper towels, ounces for most grocery items and liquids, etc.) and that way I can compare the price per foot or price per ounce, even when the container sizes differ.

For example, Tide laundry detergent is on sale at several different stores this week. But the sizes are different, and thus so are the prices. How do you know which one is the best deal? In my price book, I enter the item, the price and the size (ounces) and it is set up to automatically calculate the price per ounce (the last column). I can then see the various options and quickly tell what the cheapest price per ounce option is. Here's what I have:

Walmart has Tide 2X liquid, 100 oz, for $10.68 (9.68 after the 1.00 off coupon)
Albertsons has Tide 2X liquid, 100 oz, for $10.99, but it's 7.24 after promo and coupons
Smiths has Tide 2X liquid, 50 oz, for 5.88, but it's 3.88 after promo and coupons
Costco has Tide 2X liquid, 170 oz, for 21.40 (or 18.90 when they have their coupons)
Target has Tide 2X liquid, 75 oz, for 9.00 (8.00 after the 1.00 off coupon)

So, which is the better buy? Break it down into price per ounce (price divided by number of ounces):

Walmart = 9.68/100 = .968 per ounce (essentially 10 cents per ounce)
Albertsons = 7.24/100 = .0724 per ounce (essentially 7 cents per ounce)
Smiths = 3.88/50 = .0776 per ounce (essentially 8 cents per ounce)
Costco = 21.40/170 = .1259 per ounce (essentially 13 cents per ounce)
Target = 8.00/75 = .1067 per ounce (essentially 11 cents per ounce)

I opted to purchase it at Smiths during their double coupon promo, because the price went down to 2.88 per 50 ounce bottle, which made it .0576 per ounce, or just under 6 cents per ounce. [However, if you missed the double coupons at Smiths, you can still get a good deal on Tide over at Albertsons - buy 2 at 10.99 each, use (2) 1.00/1 coupons and (2) doubles coupons, and with the Catalina promo factored back in, you'll pay just over 6 cents an ounce.]

Clear as mud, right? :)

Target 75% Off Toys and Shoes!

Okay, so if you missed the big 75% toy clearance at Target last week (like I did, even after checking twice a week for three weeks - I was SO mad at myself) take heart, because the Target on 68th S. and Redwood has half an aisle of toys now marked to 75% off this morning (the big red signs say 50%, but the prices are all 75% off)!

These won't last long, and will probably be mostly gone by noon tomorrow. They have also moved a lot of new shoes to lower price points (those that were at 30% are now 50%, those that were at 50% are now 75%). I picked up some brown men's wingtips for 9.98 - regular price 39.99!

What I'm Buying - Albertsons 8/6

I went back to Albertsons this morning for a few things. (We needed to go to Target and I figured I would stop at Albertsons since it was right there.) I picked up some Kellogg's cereal on Saturday at the 50% off sale at Smiths, and inside the cereal boxes were $5 coupon booklets. With the doubles at Albertsons this week, those coupons made for some free cereal. Here's what I picked up:

(1) Rice Krispies cereal 18oz, 5.00 (free with coupon)
(1) Corn Flakes cereal 12oz, on sale 1.97 (free with coupon and doubles)
(1) Frosted Flakes cereal 14oz, on sale 1.97 (free with coupon and doubles)
(1) bunch bananas, .64/lb ($1.00 off when you buy cereal)
(4) Oscar Mayer Lunchables, on sale 1.00
(1) Danimals Smoothies 6ct, on sale 2.00
(1) Pirates of the Caribbean book/cd, on sale 4.50 [not pictured]

I used (1) FREE Rice Krispies cereal coupon that I got in the mail from VocalPoint, (1) 1.00/1 coupon for the corn flakes, (1) 1.00/1 coupon for the Frosted Flakes, (1) 1.00 off produce when you buy Kellogg's cereal coupon, (1) 1.00/1 coupon for the Danimals yogurt and (2) doubles coupons. I then used $7 in Catalina coupons from previous transactions.

Total: $4.05

Scenarios for the Albertsons GM/Unilever Promo

Here is a LINK to some great scenarios posted by Shelley at PinchingYourPennies.com for making the most of the great GM/Unilever promo at Albertsons this week.

What I'm Buying - Albertsons 8/5

Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Here's what I picked up at Albertsons this morning. I did multiple transactions because of the promos and in order to use more doubles coupons.

Transaction #1:

(4) DelMonte Fruit Naturals, on sale 1.00 (free after coupon)
(2) FarmStand baby carrots 1lb. bags, on sale Buy 1 Get 1 Free (2 for 1.99)

I used (2) 1.00/2 coupons on the fruit, and (2) doubles coupons. The carrots were supposed to be 2 for 1.79, but I didn't notice that they had rung up wrong until later. Oh well.

Total: $2.11

Transaction #2:

(14) Betty Crocker fruit snacks, on sale 2.00 (.75 after promo and coupon)
(2) Lipton Onion soup mix 2pk, on sale 1.00 (.50 after promo)

I used (7) .50/2 coupons for the fruit snacks and (2) doubles coupons. I then used $22 in Catalina coupons from the Dove transaction on Saturday.

Total: $4.37 + got back $15 in Catalina coupons good off next shopping trip

Transaction #3:

(2) Charmin Ultra 12 big rolls, on sale 6.99
(1) Charmin Ultra 6 mega rolls, on sale 6.99

I used (3) 1.00/1 coupons on the toilet paper, and (2) doubles coupons. I also used the $15 in Catalinas from the previous transaction.

Total: $2.41 + got $5 catalina coupon good off next shopping trip

Transaction #4:

(5) Reese's Puffs cereal, on sale 2.00
(4) Cookie Crisp cereal, on sale 2.00
(6) Skippy peanut butter, on sale 2.00
(4) balloons, 1.00 each

I used (4) 1.00/2 coupons for the cereal, (3) .75/2 coupons for the peanut butter, and (2) doubles coupons. I then used $7 in catalina coupons leftover from two previous transactions.

Total: $19.86 + got $15 in catalina coupons good off next shopping trip

Reminder: Last Day for Smith's Double Coupons

Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Today is the last day for the Smith's double coupon promo!

I believe the P&G promo will go one more week, with a few new items added on Wednesday, but I don't know whether they will have any double coupon days next week or not.

WAY too much fun at Smith's!

Monday, August 3, 2009
I know you're never going to believe it, but I actually went BACK to Smith's again this morning (twice)! I got home and was looking over the double coupon deals list and realized that we were almost out of diapers, and 6.77 for a pack of Pampers is a great price!

So, off we went right after we finished breakfast. Here's what I got:

Transaction #1:

(2) Pampers Cruisers jumbo packs, on sale 9.77 (8.77 after promo, 6.77 after coupon)
(2) Pampers BabyDry jumbo packs, on sale 9.77 (8.77 after promo, 6.77 after coupon)
(16) Pringles SuperStacks, on sale 1.65 (.65 each after doubled coupon) [4 not pictured]

I used (4) 1.00/1 coupons for the diapers and (8) 1.00/2 coupons for the Pringles. When we got to the register, 6 of the Pringles rang up at 1.00 instead of 1.65, which made them FREE! And I got $4 off for the P&G promo. (My grandfather LOVES Pringles chips, so no, these are not all for me, I will be taking several of these over to him later today.)

Total: $33.91

My original plan was to buy 8 packs of diapers. When I was cutting out my coupons, I noticed that there was a coupon for a free tub of wipes when you bought a specific kind of Pampers. But I figured I wasn't going to be buying that kind, so I didn't bring the coupon with me. When we got to the store, I realized that the kind that would get the free wipes WAS part of the sale and in the size I needed, so we checked out with our 4 diapers and bazillion Pringles, ran home (thank goodness Smith's is really close), cut out the free wipes coupons, and then went BACK to Smith's for the other 4 packs of diapers.

Transaction #2:

(3) Pampers Extra Protection jumbo packs, on sale 9.77 (8.77 after promo, 6.77 after coupon)
(1) Pampers Cruisers jumbo pack, on sale 9.77 (8.77 after promo, 6.77 after coupon)
(3) Pampers ExtraThick Sensitive wipes, 60ct (free with coupon and diaper purchase)
(2) Rice Krispies cereal, on sale 2.50 (.50 after coupon, each has $5 worth of Kellogg's coupons inside)
(2) Dannon yogurt, on sale 1.88 each (1.13 each after coupon)
(2) Kroger sour cream, on sale 1.00
(2) bags red seedless grapes, on sale .99/lb

I used (4) 1.00/1 coupons for the diapers, (3) free coupons for the wipes, (2) 1.00/1 coupons for the cereal, (1) .75/2 coupon for the yogurt (from in-store display), and got $4 off for the P&G promo. I also got a 1.00 e-coupon for the diapers and .25 e-coupon for the wipes.

Total: $38.11 + the $10 in Kellogg's coupons from the cereal boxes

Now, I have one caveat on the free wipes - when I got home, I reread the coupon, and it says "when you buy any BOX of Pampers Swadlers Sensitive, Swaddlers or Extra Protection diapers". I don't think I was supposed to use it with the jumbo pack of diapers - OOPS! I totally did not see the word "box" in there when I was scanning through it this morning...

What Do I Include in My Three-Month Supply?

What kinds of things should you include in your three-month supply for food storage? Well, that all depends - on you and your family. It depends on what kinds of things you and your family like to eat, and it depends on what kind of "cook" you are.

It's all based on the things you use in your normal, everyday cooking. If you do a lot of baking from scratch, you'll want to keep a lot of baking items around. If you are more of the "semi-homemade" cook, you'll want to keep more of the convenience and canned goods around. If you like to bake your own bread, you'll probably want to include a fair supply of wheat, gluten, dough enhancer, lemon juice, and similar items (which others might only include as part of their long-term storage).

Crystal at EverydayFoodStorage.net put together a great "basics" list for a three-month pantry supply HERE. You can use this list as a guide, and modify it to meet your individual/family needs - adding to and subtracting from as you see fit.

Your three-month supply should also include items OTHER than food, too. You should try to keep a three-month supply of basic household and health items as well (as space and cost will permit). Think things like toilet paper, diapers, toothpaste, shampoo/conditioner, soap, laundry detergent, etc. Nothing extravagant, just the basics.

What I'm Buying - Smiths 8/3

I went back to Smith's this morning to take advantage of the double coupons. Here's what I picked up:

(1) Charmin Ultra Strong, 12 big rolls - on sale 6.99 (5.99 after promo, 3.74 after coupon)
(1) Bounty paper towels, 8ct - on sale 6.99 (5.99 after promo, 3.99 after coupons)
(1) Cascade ActionPacs, 20ct - on sale 3.99 (2.99 after promo, .99 after coupon)
(4) Tide 2x HE detergent, 50oz - on sale 5.88 (4.88 after promo, 2.88 after coupon)
(7) Crest whitening toothpaste, 6.4oz - on sale 1.00 (free after coupon)
(1) Pringles Stix, 10ct - on sale 2.99 (1.99 after promo, free after coupon)
(1) pk fabric headbands, 3ct - on sale 1.00

I used (1) 1.00/1 coupon for the paper towels (from a coupon booklet back in January), (1) 1.00/1 coupon for the Charmin (from coupon booklet in January), (4) 1.00/1 coupons for the Tide, (7) .50/1 coupons for the toothpaste, (1) 1.00/1 coupon for the Pringles Stix (from coupon booklet in January), and then had one e-coupon for .25 for the Charmin come off my total (which I didn't know I had loaded on my card). Then I got (2) $4 off for the P&G promo.

Total: $23.84

The double coupons this morning were super easy - the registers are programmed to automatically double the coupons, so you don't have to do anything special, and neither does the checker. Just make sure to give them your Fresh Values card.

It looks like Smith's is going to continue the P&G promo for another week, and will be adding additional sale items (Bounce, PeptoBismol, Dayquil/Nyquil, Pampers, Secret, Gillette, Olay and OldSpice). I do not know whether they will have another double coupons next week though.

What I'm Buying - RiteAid 8/3

Went on a little trip to RiteAid this morning, and here's what I picked up:

(1) Always Clean pads, 24ct - on sale 6.99
(1) GE SoftWhite light bulbs, 2ct - on sale 2.00
(1) Duck EZ Start mailing tape, 22.2yd - on sale 1.49
(1) Crest Pro-Health toothpaste, 4.2oz - on sale 2.79
(1) Natrol Pro-Biotics caps, 10ct - on sale 8.99
(1) Zantac 150, 8ct - on sale 4.99

I used (1) 3.00/1 printable coupon for the Zantac, (1) 3.00/1 printable coupon for the Natrol, (1) .75/1 coupon for the toothpaste and (1) $5 off wyb $25 printable coupon.

Total: $17.37

Each of these items qualifies for a Single Check Rebate from RiteAid:
3.00 for the Always pads
2.00 for the lightbulbs
1.49 for the tape
2.79 for the toothpaste
8.99 for the Natrol
4.99 for the Zantac
= get back 23.26 in rebates!

For those who are contact lens wearers, there is a rebate available for ReNu MultiCare solution (2pk 8oz bottles). It's on sale for 9.99 with a rebate of 9.99 [limit 1] and there is a $2 printable coupon available (see link below for more details).

Here is a LINK to the site where I got the info on these deals. Please note that it is not a Utah blog, so not all of the listed coupons match up with what we have (no Garnier Fructis coupons).

Great P&G items at Smiths

Sunday, August 2, 2009
Here are some sample scenarios for making the most of the P&G promo and double coupons at Smiths through Tuesday:

Tide laundry detergent, 20-40 loads (the liquid was 50oz size)
On sale for 5.88 each

Buy (4) Tide @ 5.88 each
= 23.52
- $4 for P&G promo
- (4) $1 Tide coupons (see P&G coupon book from 8/2)
- $4 for doubling the Tide coupons
= 11.52 + tax

That's just slightly less than .06/oz (assuming 4 50oz bottles) which is the same price per ounce as the amazing P&G sale that Albertsons held back in January where I bought all those big bottles of Tide - in other words, that's the cheapest price I've seen on Tide since January! (Walmart has a 'roll-back' right now on Tide 100oz for $10 until Oct, which is still more expensive at .10/oz.)

One thing that has really helped our grocery budget has been not having to buy some of the household and cleaning items at full price when I would run out of them every month. I can't believe I used to pay $14 for a 100oz bottle of Tide at Walmart every month! By buying the household stuff (which is usually so expensive) at rock bottom prices and stockpiling it to last until the next sale, I free up more of my grocery budget to go towards weekly food and also food storage items. Same with things like toilet paper, paper towels, shampoo, conditioner, baby diapers, etc. You don't necessarily need to have a year's worth (although that isn't a bad idea) - just enough to last you until the next time the item will be on a great sale again, which is usually anywhere between 3-6 months.

How about some Puffs tissues?
Buy (4) @ 1.69
= 6.76
- $4 for P&G promo
- .25/3 coupon in P&G coupon booklet from 8/2
- .25 doubled
= 2.26 + tax

That's .57 a box! Not a bad price for stocking up for school and classroom use.

Secret Deodorant, on sale 3.49
Buy (4) @ 3.49
= 13.96
- $4 for P&G promo
- (4) $1 coupons from the 7/5 P&G coupon book
- $4 for doubled coupons
= 1.96 + tax

That's .49 each! You save $3 on each one!

Tampax 20ct, on sale 2.99
Buy (4) @ 2.99
= 11.96
- $4 for P&G promo
- (4) .50/1 coupons from 8/2 P&G coupon book
- $2 for doubled coupons
= 3.96 + tax

That's .99 each!

And did I mention Pampers diapers?!?
Buy (4) @ 9.77
= 39.08
- $4 for P&G promo
- (4) 1.00/1 coupons from 8/2 P&G coupon book
- $4 for doubled coupons
= 27.08 + tax

That's 6.77 per jumbo pack of diapers!

And you don't have to get 4 of each item - you can mix and match, as long as you stay in multiples of 4 for the promo. So you could get 2 Tide and 2 Secret deodorants, or 3 Puffs tissues and 1 Tampax. And you can do more than 1 group of 4 per transaction.

Smith's Double Coupons and Free Crest Toothpaste!

Smith's Food & Drug is doubling coupons through Tuesday, value up to $2.00 and no limit to how many you can double! (Holy cow!) You must have a Fresh Values Card and use it with your order, but you don't need any special papers or other coupons.

This will make an already good P&G sale simply AWESOME! :) If you got the P&G coupon insert from the Sunday or SundayPreview papers, there are lots of coupons that will work for this sale.

And the already cheap Crest toothpaste, with new coupon and doubles, is now FREE! GO STOCK UP!

(Use the .50/1 any Crest toothpaste 4.2oz or larger, from the 8/2 P&G coupon insert, and double it - Or use the .75/1 Crest Premium Paste 4.2oz or larger from the same insert, and they should 'double' it to .25 to make the 1.00 toothpaste FREE). [They aren't supposed to do a full double of the coupon amount if the amount would be more than the item price - they should double just to whatever amount makes the item free. Did that make sense?]

I think there are several options for free yogurt as well when you double existing coupons (some may be in today's coupon inserts).

Here is a LINK to the Smiths Doubles Thread at PinchingYourPennies.com.

The Sugar is Canned!

Saturday, August 1, 2009
I canned all my sugar this evening!!!

My 80lbs of sugar fit in 13 #10 cans, with one 5lb bag left over. I started with the sugar since it didn't need oxygen absorbers and thus wasn't time-sensitive.

After those 13 cans, I moved on to 9 more, this time with items that needed oxygen absorbers. It was mostly oats (some quick, some old-fashioned) and one can of macaroni.

I filled all of the cans, then opened the oxygen absorbers, put them on top and put the lids on them. I had my husband pass them to me while I worked the machine, to save time. (Once you open the oxygen absorbers you need to seal the cans within a few minutes.)

I was able to get all 22 cans filled and sealed in under an hour. It's definitely faster to use the machines at the cannery, but this was not bad, especially since I was able to save a lot of money by buying the sugar on a really good sale. The oats were from a sale back in January, and the macaroni was from various sales over the last few months.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm exhausted and I'm going to bed!


Are you guys tired of seeing my crazy grocery shopping trips yet?!? :)

What I'm Buying - Albertsons 8/1

There is a Unilever catalina going on right now at Albertsons, buy $30 worth of qualifying products and get $12 off your next shopping trip.

The first transaction didn't work quite like I thought it would, but oh well. Win some, lose some. Still a good deal.

Transaction #1:

(I must have been in a "green" mood today...)

(2) Vaseline Aloe Fresh lotion, on sale 5.00 (4.00 after coupon)
(3) Dove Body Wash, on sale 5.99 (4.74 after coupon)
(1) 500ct Qtips, on sale 3.00

I used (2) 1.00/1 printable coupons for the lotion and (3) 1.25/1 coupons for the body wash. I was going to use doubles, but they were out of the ads at the front of the store, and then the cashier said she could find one and tried to pause the order, but it finished the purchase before she could pause it, so I told them not to worry about it. They were so nice to offer though!

Total: $27.34 + received $12 in catalina coupons good off next shopping trip

Transaction #2 (later in day):

(3) Dove shampoo 25.4oz, on sale 4.99 (3.99 after coupon)
(4) Dove conditioner 25.4oz, on sale 4.99 (3.99 after coupon)

This one qualified for TWO different catalina deals. I used (6) 1.00/1 coupons [yup, I can't count to 7 for some reason], plus (3) doubles coupons, and then used my $12 catalina coupons from the earlier transaction.

Total: $16.32 + I received, get this, $27 in Catalina coupons!!!

Go HERE for details on this great deal! According to the dates, this should be available through 8/9, but the coupons state "while supplies last". I know that the store at 70th and Redwood was wiped out of Qtips (which also work for this deal) right after my first trip today, so once word gets out (which it has) these items will go fast!

But have no fear, because there are still plenty of fabulous deals to be gotten this next week at Albertsons - there is a big Buy $30 Get $15 OYNSO (off your next shopping order - Catalina coupon) promo starting tomorrow, and also a Buy $20 Get $5 OYNSO on Proctor & Gamble items - promos will run 8/2 to 8/8.

AND - if that weren't enough, there is a rumor that Smith's may be introducing a Double Coupon sale this next week!!! My head is spinning already! :)

What I'm Buying - Smiths 8/1

So, Smith's had a big 1-day Kellogg's/Keebler sale today - 50% off! I had forgotten all about it until about 11am (shame on me). What makes this a great sale is that there are a bunch of coupons from Tuesday/Wednesday's RedPlum that go with this sale, and Kellogg's is running a $10 Fuel for School Rebate program on top of that. For the rebate, you must purchase 10 Kellogg's/Keebler products in one transaction.

With today's sale at Smith's and the coupons, combined with the rebate, it made for some great deals!

Here's what I picked up:

(2) Kellogg's Raisin Bran cereal, on sale 1.39 (.89 each after coupon)
(2) Kellogg's Special K cereal, on sale 1.75 (1.25 each after coupon)
(2) Kellogg's Yogos fruit snacks, on sale 1.49 (.99 each after coupon)
(2) Eggo's waffles, on sale .98 (.48 each after coupon)
(2) Keebler FudgeShoppe cookies, on sale 1.37 (.87 after coupon)
(2) Tennessee Pride sausage 1lb chub, on sale 2.99 (.99 after in-store coupon)
(1) Fast Fixin's chicken nuggets, on sale 4.99 (4.24 after in-store coupon)
(4) CoverGirl nail polish, on sale 2.77 (1.77 after P&G promo, .77 each after coupons) [not pictured - I forgot to stick them in the picture]

The Tennesse Pride sausage was an in-store special - they had some person dressed up in the mascot suit and another was handing out 2.00 off coupons! And the Fast Fixin's chicken was also on a special one-day sale, with a lady handing out .75 coupons.

So, all together I used (2) 1.00/2 coupons for the cereal, (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the Yogos, (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the waffles, (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the cookies, (2) 2.00/1 coupons for the sausage, (1) .75/1 coupon for the chicken nuggets and (2) 2.00/2 coupons for the nail polish. I got $4 off for the P&G promo (CoverGirl products are P&G and qualify for the promo).

Total: $19.77

Now I will submit my rebate form and get a $10 rebate + $70 coupon code for Dell. That would make my net purchase $10.77. Note: The rebate form that came in the last RedPlum has the start date for the Fuel for School promo as 8/2, but there is another form available online that includes purchases made anytime 7/6/09 - 9/30/09.

Coupon Preview 8/2

Here is a LINK to the coupon preview for this weekend, from TaylorTown Previews.