Don't Forget the Picnic Supplies!

Thursday, June 30, 2011
Picnic supplies like paper plates, cups, plastic utensils and napkins are handy things to have in your food storage. They are good options for situations where water supplies might be limited (no dishes to wash and you can save the water for drinking). They are relatively inexpensive and have an incredibly long shelf-life. :)

This is a great week to stock up - I have seen some really good deals on these items at stores this week as everyone gears up for the big holiday weekend.

Macey's has Western Family paper plates 100ct for .99 - they also have Western Family paper napkins 250ct for .99 as well!

Another good stock up item this week? Western Family ketchup 24oz - just .77 ea at Reams!

Garden Damage

Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Pardon me while I shed a few tears for my "garden"...we have had two days of intermittent strong wind gusts (enough to knock my pots over) and it looks like just about everything in my little "garden" has been affected. The wind snapped one of the main vines on my cucumber bush, and the two tomato plants look like they are absolutely dead. My cilantro is flatter than flat and the dill may not survive.

I did bring all of the pots and planters inside yesterday, and the plants looked okay then, but we put them outside last night thinking that the wind gusts had stopped and I guess they hadn't.

I'm guessing that if I go outside I will see that most of the plums have been knocked off the tree as well. :(

What I'm Buying - Smiths 6/29

I was able to make it to the store on the first day of the sale this week. I seem to be a bit off my game though recently. The last few grocery trips have been significantly more expensive than usual, and I feel like I'm losing my coupon mojo...I don't know whether it's the rising food prices, lower coupon values, change in shopping behavior, or a combination of all of these plus other stuff.

If you're out and about, and happen to see my coupon mojo running around somewhere, would you please send it home? Thanks! :)

Smith's is running another Daytona Mega Event sale this week - Buy 10 items and save $3 instantly.

Here's what I picked up (a lot of this stuff I got today was definitely not necessary, so today's trip price was high because of all the extras):


(2) pkg T-bone steaks, on sale 4.99/lb
(2) 4lb pkg strawberries, on sale 3.99
(4) Stacy's pita chips, on sale 2.00 (1.45 after coupon)
(4) Minute Maid juice 12pk, on sale 2.99 + B3G1 Free (4 for 9.00 PLUS get a $3 Catalina wyb 4, so $6 for 4 12pks)
(4) Coke product 12pks, on sale B3G1 Free (4 for $10 at my store)
(4) Sierra Mist 12pks, on sale 4 for $10
(1) Nature Valley Vitamin D-1000 200ct, on sale 8.79 (7.79 after coupon)
(1) dozen donutes, on sale 3.49
(3) strudel bites, clearanced to 1.79
(3) Banquet Brown N Serve sausage, on sale .98 (.68 after promo)
(1) CountryTime lemonade drink mix, on sale 1.29 (.99 after promo, FREE after coupon)
(1) Breyer's ice cream, on sale 2.99 (2.69 after promo, 2.19 after coupon)
(2) Dial body wash, on sale 3.29 (2.99 after promo, .99 after coupon)
(1) Oreo Fudge Creme cookies, on sale 2.99 (2.69 after promo, 2.19 after coupon)
(11) PopTarts 12ct, on sale 2.69 (2.39 after promo, 2.09 after coupon)
(10) Oscar Mayer hot dogs, on sale 1.79 (1.49 after promo, .99 after coupon)
(1) Dove deodorant, on sale 1.99 (1.69 after promo, .94 after coupon)

I used (4) .55/1 coupons for the chips [see SS-6/26], (1) 1.00/1 e-coupon for the lemonade mix [see Smiths website to load to your FreshValues card], (1) .50/1 e-coupon for the ice cream [see Smiths website], (2) 2.00/1 coupons for the body wash [see RP-6/12], (1) .50/1 e-coupon for the cookies [see Smiths website], (1) 1.00/2 coupon for the PopTarts [from a Smiths coupon mailer], (3) 1.00/3 coupons for the PopTarts [see RP-5/15], (5) 1.00/2 coupons for the hot dogs [see SS-5/15 or SS-6/19] and (1) .75/1 e-coupon for the deodorant [see Smiths website].

Total: $129.83 + $3 Catalina good off next purchase

My "Garden" Update

Tuesday, June 28, 2011
There are a few new additions to my make-shift "garden"...

My indoor herbs have gone the way of the dodo bird...except for the rosemary and sage plants that are somehow still hanging on by a thread. I think there just wasn't enough sunlight where they were sitting, so I thought maybe we'd try a few outside and see if they do any better. So far, so good.

We bought some of the rectangular "window box" type planters at Walmart and then found some window box supports as well, so we decided to put the planters on the railing of our deck - easier to monitor and water, and less likely that kids will knock them over or step on them.

We ended up getting two - one for herbs and one for peppers/cucumbers.

Here's the herb planter:

(from left to right: cilantro, German thyme, rosemary, dill)


Next the peppers and cucumbers:

(from left to right: cubanelle [sweet] peppers, jalapeno peppers, burpless cucumbers [non-bush kind])


I have managed to keep the tomato and cucumber plants alive - so far. Here's proof:

(Early-Girl tomatoes)


(burpless bush cucumbers)


(Roma tomatoes)

Chocolate Milkshake (with no ice cream)

Saturday, June 25, 2011
Here's an easy recipe for a great summer treat - chocolate milkshakes! Best of all, it uses food storage! (No ice cream involved).

1/2 C. Water
3/4 C. Dry Powdered Milk
1/3 C. Chocolate Powder (Nesquick or similar)
2 C. Ice

Layer the ingredients in a blender in the order listed and then blend until smooth. Serve immediately!

Even better, if you have Strawberry Nesquick you can make a strawberry milkshake, too!

[Note that the milk is the dry powdered stuff, from the LDS Cannery, NOT the Carnation instant stuff you find in the grocery store. If you have the Carnation instant powdered milk, then use double the amount called for in the recipe.]

What I'm Buying - Target 6/22

Thursday, June 23, 2011
There are some great deals to be had at Target this week! Sorry it has taken me so long in the week to post these, but if you hurry you can still catch them while there are still a few more days in the sale.


Up & Up ibuprofen 24ct, .99
Use: .50/1 Up & Up pain relief, Target WEB coupon
Final: .49

Up & Up hair detangler spray, 1.34
Use: .50/1 Up & Up hair care item, Target WEB coupon
Final: .84

Ritz Crackfuls crackers, on sale 2.40
Use: 1.00/1 Ritz Crackerfuls 6ct, Target WEB coupon
Also use: Ritz Crackerfuls Filled Crackers, any variety 6 oz. $1/1 (7-10-11) SafeKidsSS-4/17
Final: .40

A1 steak sauce, 3.19
Use: 1.00/1 A1 steak sauce 10oz or larger, Target WEB coupon
Also use: A1 Steak Sauce or Marinade, 10 oz. or larger bottle $1/1 (7-3-11) SS-6/5
Final: 1.19

Dannon Danimals Smoothies 6ct, 2.69
Use: 1.00/1 Dannon Danimals yogurt smoothies 6ct, Target WEB coupon
Also use: Dannon Danimals pack, any $1/1 (7-31-11) SS-6/5
Final: .69

Crayola ColorWonder items, on sale 3.23 - 12.00
(These all ranged from 3.30 to 6.00)
Use: Crayola Color Wonder product, any $1/1 (6-30-11) SS-4/3
Final: 2.30 - 5.00

Market Pantry pasta sauce (1.34) and pasta (1.09)
Use: 1.00/2 Market Pantry 26oz pasta sauce AND any dry pasta, Target WEB coupon
Final: 1.43 for both (.72 ea)

Oscar Mayer Lunchables with fruit, 2.69
Use: 1.00/2 Oscar Mayer Lunchables with Fruit, Target WEB coupon
Also use: (2) Oscar Mayer Lunchables Lunch Combinations with fruit, any $1/1 (7-10-11) SS-5/15
Final: 1.19 ea wyb 2

I also got Kool-Aid drink mix canisters for .97 ea and Bull's-Eye barbecue sauce for .37 ea - see the details for those deals HERE.

What I'm Buying - Smith's 6/22

This was my second trip to Smith's during this particular sale. But because of the crazy stuff going on around here the last few weeks, I'm not sure I even remembered to take a picture of the first one, or if I did, it's probably on the laptop which died a very grisly death...boo...

Anyway, it wasn't a big trip, just wanted to grab a few more things from the sale before it ended, but good news, the cereal deals go on for another week!

Here's what I picked up:


(1) Cottonelle bath tissue 12 big rolls, on sale 5.99 (4.99 after promo)
(4) Kellogg's Raisin Bran Crunch cereal, on sale 2.49 (1.49 after promo, .99 after coupon)
(2) Challenge butter, on sale 1.99 (.99 after coupon)
(4) Gobstoppers candy, on sale 1.00 (to save my sanity after shopping all day with two kids)
(3) Wheat Thins Stix, on sale 1.67 (.67 after coupon)
(8) Nabisco Snak Saks cookies, on sale 1.00 (.50 after coupon)

I used (2) 1.00/2 coupons for the cereal [see RP-5/15 or RP-6/12], (2) 1.00/1 printable coupons for the butter [Facebook coupon], (3) 1.00/1 coupons for the crackers [see SS-4/17, expires 6-26-11] and (4) 1.00/2 coupons for the cookies [see SS-6/19].

Total: $22.08

Scarlet Fever

There is a new mutated strain of scarlet fever spreading through Hong Kong, China and Macau that is more resistant to antibiotics than previous strains.

While there is no need to worry or panic, it is good to review the causes and symptoms and the things you can do to prevent spreading or catching the Group A strep bacteria that causes scarlet fever.

These are the same good things to keep in mind to help prevent the spread of most illnesses:

- Wash your hands frequently
- Do not share cups or utensils
- Do not share linens or towels with those who are sick
- Watch for the signs and symptoms, and seek medical attention if scarlet fever is suspected.

Read this great Yahoo! Health article for more information.

I'm still here, I promise...

Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Hang in there, my dear readers. I am not gone - just terribly mired down in *stuff*...

My computer crashed (rather unexpectedly) for the third and final time last week, despite our best efforts, and it cannot be revived. We have spent days trying to salvage all of my files...

And things have been a bit crazy with the closing on one house and a refinance on the other...

And we've had company for the last week and a half...

And even though I grew up with Apple Macintosh computers in my home when I was little (we even had a Lisa [little Mac's "mommy"]) and had years and years of experience using them all through high school and college, I have been away from Macs for several years now and am finding it hard to navigate my way around one once again, so blog posting hasn't been as easy in this unfamiliar "territoy"...

But there is hope! I have the photos for a shopping trip post (Smith's) and a Target deals post, and I hope to have them up very soon.

Oh, and I added to my "garden" last weekend, so I'll post about that as well. No laughing from you seasoned garden pros, k? ;)

Flood Warning - Little Cottonwood Creek

Wednesday, June 15, 2011
A Flood Warning was issued today by the National Weather Service:...THE FLOOD WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 100 PM MDT FRIDAY FOR LITTLE COTTONWOOD CREEK FROM THE HEADWATERS TO THE CONFLUENCE WITH THE JORDAN RIVER IN EAST CENTRAL SALT LAKE COUNTY...



* AT 226 PM WEDNESDAY...RECENT WARM TEMPERATURES HAVE LED TO

ACCELERATED SNOWMELT. WARM TEMPERATURES TODAY AND THURSDAY WILL

INCREASE THE SNOWMELT...LEADING TO FURTHER INCREASES IN FLOWS

ALONG LITTLE COTTONWOOD CREEK.



* THE LATEST FLOW ON LITTLE COTTONWOOD CREEK AT CRESTWOOD PARK IS

580 CUBIC FEET PER SECOND /CFS/.



* FLOOD FLOW IS 800 CFS.



* LITTLE COTTONWOOD CREEK IS EXPECTED TO RISE ABOVE FLOOD FLOW LATE

THIS EVENING AND REMAIN ABOVE FLOOD FLOW THROUGH FRIDAY AFTERNOON.



* AT 800 CFS...FLOOD DAMAGE WILL OCCUR IN THE 700 EAST AND FORT

UNION AREAS. THIS ALSO INCLUDES MURRAY PARK AND STRUCTURES

UPSTREAM AND DOWNSTREAM OF THE PARK. FLOODING MAY OCCUR ON TO

STATE STREET AS LITTLE COTTONWOOD CREEK FLOWS UNDER THE ROAD. AT

THESE HIGH FLOWS...BANK EROSION WILL TAKE PLACE AND THREATEN

STRUCTURES ALONG LITTLE COTTONWOOD CREEK.

My "I-Can't-Figure-Out-This-Gardening-Thing" Garden

Friday, June 10, 2011
I like to think that I am a fairly decently informed individual. I like to be informed; I like to learn. I generally do a lot of research when I begin a new endeavor. But I have found a topic that has me completely at a loss...I cannot seem to figure it out no matter how hard I try!

I have wanted to have a garden for a few years now, but so many other things have gotten in the way. When we moved last year, I was determined that I'd finally get around to doing a garden. I even bought seeds, and grow pellets and seed starters. I picked up my copy of Square Foot Gardening and read through it, then browsed lots of websites for more ideas. But the whole concept seemed so complex - what to plant, where to plant, what soil, how much water, what kind of fertilizer, what you can and cannot plant next to each other, and (most confusing of all) WHEN to plant - every single seed had different instructions, different sun/soil/water needs, different planting schedule, etc. ARGH!!!!

Needless to say, nothing got planted last year.

HOWEVER - we did discover in about mid-July that the two big red trees in the backyard in front of our garage/shed were not just nice-looking leafy trees, they were actually plum trees - SCORE! :) Unfortunately, by the time we figured this out, the fruit was on and pretty much ripe, and the birds got to it before we could harvest any.


So this year, I was determined again to start a garden. I re-read the gardening book, perused the beginning gardener blogs, bought more seeds, more seed starters and more grow pellets. I even went so far as to get four herb plants in pots in my kitchen window sill...


I even bought the special self-watering pots. It's not a great picture, but even so, you can see that they are not doing well - the cilantro is all but dead. The thyme is barely hanging in there. The rosemary may or may not make it. The only likely survivor right now is the sage...

Anyway, March came and went - no seeds planted. Then April, then May. A little too late to start some of the seeds by then. So I thought, well, I guess I'll just buy the starter plants and plant them. But it's now almost mid-June and we STILL have not gotten around to building any garden boxes. We haven't even come up with a plan. We're not sure where to put the boxes, how we'll water, whether it will get enough sun/shade, etc. I read and read and read and read, and I STILL can't figure this stuff out - seriously, I'm beginning to think I am missing a crucial gardening-comprehension gene in my DNA somewhere.

So for this year, here is the extent of my "garden":


(1) roma tomato plant


(1) early girl tomato plant [back]
(1) pickling cucumber plant [front]
and the herbs (if they survive) and the plum trees (if the birds don't get to them first)

The tomoto and cucumber plants came just as you see them - in the pot, already started, with the attached trellis - for $12 each at Walmart. It may not be the cheapest route, and it's not much for a DIY garden, but at least it's SOMETHING... ;)

Please, if you know of any good resources for teaching "Gardening for Dummies" or "Gardening for the Severely-Garden-Incompetent", let me know!

What I'm Buying - Sunflower Market 6/8

Wednesday, June 8, 2011
Sorry, it has been the most chaotic day...I don't have pictures yet. I'll update the post with pics later.

We got last-minute notice that we were going to proceed to close on the sale of our previous house today (we had already attempted two other closing dates with no luck). We only had about an hour's notice, and had to drive nearly all the way across the valley, but we made it - barely.

After the closing and our subsequent celebratory dinner, where we gorged ourselves on way more sushi than should ever be eaten in one sitting, I asked my dear hubs to stop at Sunflower Market so I could grab just a few things before we left town to come home (aka "the boondocks", "the sticks", "outer Mongolia", etc.).

Here's what I picked up:

(12) pkg grass-fed 93% lean ground beef, on sale 2.99/lb
(2) bags red seedless grapes, on sale .59/lb (can you BELIEVE that price?!?!)
(2) large mangos, on sale .50 ea (need to make more Grilled Tilapia with Mango Salsa - it was SOOO good!)
(1) 1lb bag carrots, .69

Total: about $40

I am super excited to try the beef! It's pretty darn pricey compared to what I'm used to buying/paying, but so many people tell me you can really taste the difference with grass-fed beef, and I really like the idea of grass-fed (lower fat, higher omega 3 oils, less calories, more natural for the animals, etc.). I've been told that 2.99/lb is actually a REALLY good price for grass-fed beef, so I thought we'd give it a try.

The Church's Welfare Program Celebrates 75 Years

Sunday, June 5, 2011
This year marks the 75th anniversary of the establishment of the Welfare program of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It is a marvelous program that has benefitted countless lives.

KSL published a wonderful article on the Welfare program this evening! You can read it HERE.

Grilled Tilapia with Mango Salsa


We tried this recipe earlier this week, and it was AMAZING!!! I'm pretty much a newbie when it comes to cooking seafood - we didn't eat fish at home EVER when I was little, except for at restaurants (and even then, it wasn't very often) so I've never really learned how to cook things like fish fillets, or crab, or lobster, etc. Love the stuff, just don't know how to cook it.

But this recipe was very easy to pull together, and it tasted FABULOUS! This one is definitely a keeper around here!

Grilled Tilapia with Mango Salsa @ Allrecipe

I'm really trying to incorporate more fish into our meals, but since we never ate it at home when I was little, I don't have a lot of experience with it. What are some of your favorite fish or seafood recipes that even a newbie like me could handle?

Emergency Preparedness with Large Animals

Thursday, June 2, 2011
KSL did a story this evening on tips for dealing with emergency situations or evacuations when you have large animals (horses, cows, etc.). We have a lot of rural areas being threatened with flooding, and that puts large animals (and small animals) in danger as well. Read the story to find out what you can do to be better prepared.

KSL Story