Saturday, June 13, 2009

Weekly Shopping Trip--Savings $62.74

This week was an interesting week of shopping in two different ways! First, there was several items that I had to get rainchecks for because they were out of stock when I did my shopping. Secondly, I managed to save $62.74 without using even ONE coupon! I had coupons to use but those were for those items that were out of stock. I also had coupons for a few other sale items but decided to use some self-control and decided not to purchase the items this week because we had something similiar already stacked on the pantry shelves at home.

Over the last couple of months, I have been trying to stick to a $100 weekly budget for everything that I need to run the household(food, cleaners, etc.) and this week I ended up only $7.18 over $100!! I am sooo excited that I have been able to knock my weekly total down to around the $100 mark rather than $150-$160 mark!

So without further ado, here is a breakdown of the purchases I made this week:

Family Fare(1st trip):
  • 2 gallons milk $5.98
  • 2 bottles apple juice $3.34
Total OOP: $9.32
Total Savings: $1.04
Total without sales and coupons: $10.36

Family Fare(2nd trip):
  • 3 bags chips: $7.00
  • 4 boxes mac & cheese $2.40
  • 9lbs boneless/skinless chicken breasts & tenders $14.94
  • 2 lbs stick margarine $1.50
  • 2-56oz containers ice cream $3.94
  • 2 pkgs. smoky links $4.00
  • 1 lb deli turkey breast $3.08
  • 2 dozen eggs $1.96
  • 1/2 gallon buttermilk $2.59
  • 5 Faygo 2 liters $3.95(with deposit)
  • 1 head lettuce 69¢
  • 1.21lbs zucchini/yellow squash $1.20
  • 3 lbs bananas $1.77
  • 1.85lbs cherries $3.68
Total OOP: $52.70
Total Savings: $42.61
Total without sales & coupons: $95.31

  • 11.74lbs boneless/skinless chicken breasts $23.34
  • 5 pkgs brown & serve sausage $5.00
  • 2 gallons milk $3.96
  • 10 lbs potatoes $3.69
  • 2 lbs shredded hashbrowns $4.67
  • 1 family pack bag chicken nuggets $4.50
Total OOP: $45.16
Total Savings: $19.09
Total without sales & coupons: $64.25

Grand Total OOP: $107.18
Grand Total Savings: $62.74
Grand Total without sales & coupons: $169.92

Friday, June 12, 2009

Awards, Awards, Oh My!

I have been sooo bad! I haven't taken the time to acknowledge that I have been blessed with TWO different awards by TWO wonderful bloggy friends over the course of the last couple of months! Thank you to the ladies who gave me these awards!

The first award is the Kreativ Blog Award given to me by Momtofivekids over at My Life and Homeschooling! There are instructions with this award that I am to list 7 things that I am thankful for and then list 7 blogs that I love.

The 7 things I am thankful for:
  1. God
  2. My Hubby
  3. My 5 children
  4. My parents
  5. My church
  6. Godly friends
  7. my hubby's job---this is something definitely to be thankful for with living in MI.

The second award I received is the Lovely Blog Award from Ashley over at Get Groceries Free. There are instructions with this award too! I am to pass it on to 15 blogs that I have newly discovered and have been reading who I feel deserve the award.

Now the hard part...listing blogs!! I am going to combine the lists for the two awards so the blogs I list can choose to accept both awards! Several of the blogs I have just found over the last few months while the others are blogs that I read on a weekly(sometimes daily) basis!

And the blog awards go to:

I want to take the time to publicly thank these seven ladies for their blogs! I love reading their blogs and reading their posts that they write from the heart! They are an inspiration to me!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Repurposing Items

I love being able to use something for other than its intended purpose and it work! Our house has 3 bedrooms and in each bedroom there is a small closet(the master bedroom has the smallest one!!!--no walk in closets here!). In an effort to use the closet space effectively, I have repurposed a few things rather than getting rid of the items.

Instead of doing some built in shelves at the kids level, we bought a 2 shelf bookcase to stick in their closets for them to keep their books on rather than on the floor or where little hands could get to them. I did some decluttering recently of these bookshelves and found that the shelves were bare. So I decided that instead of keeping them bare I would put the kids' sweatshirts and sweaters on a shelf so that they could reach them and wear them. While they are still able to keep books on another shelf. The top shelf is where they keep their Bibles and their baseball gloves. Using the bookshelves has really helped to organize the closet!

The other repurposed item in my kids' closets are file crates or milk crates. These crates fit just perfectly in the little corner of their closets and has become their dirty clothes hamper. Using these has helped the issues of having clothes all over the floor either in their closet or in their room. It also has helped the ones that have the responsibility of collecting the dirty laundry know what is dirty and what is clean clothes!

Repurposing the bookshelves and the file crates have made my life easier and works for me!

What is something that you have repurposed to make life easier for you and your family?

This post is linked at:

**originally posted in February, 2009

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Peanut Butter Freezer Bars

Right now in the Midwest we are enjoying comfortable temperatures that do not require us to turn on the air conditioning. However, it only lasts as comfortable until you need to turn on the oven to cook or bake. Then in order to bake or cook with the oven you have to turn on the air conditioning just to survive the extra warmth. Instead of turning on the oven to bake treats for my kids, I turn to my selection of no bake delights to keep up with the sweet tooth until the cooler weather/snow arrives back in town.

Here is a recipe for one of those no bake delights that mixes my two favorite things---chocolate and peanut butter! Sorry I don't have a picture of this creation!

Peanut Butter Freezer Bars

1-1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 package(4 serving size) instant chocolate pudding
12 graham crackers

  1. Mix milk and peanut butter together in a mixing bowl.
  2. Add pudding to peanut butter/milk mixture. Stir mixture until smooth.
  3. Spread a thick layer of pudding on a graham cracker. Top with another graham cracker.
  4. Put crackers into a covered dish. Place dish in freezer.
Makes 6 bars.

Notes: This recipe is very easy to make a double or triple batch of bars. The last in the freezer for several weeks before the graham crackers start to go soggy. I have used several flavors(oreo, devil's food, chocolate fudge, & vanilla) of instant pudding to make this delight.

Wanting to add some more variety to your no bake dessert selection??

How about trying some of my other no bake desserts:
  1. Banana Pops
  2. Lemonade Ice Cream Sandwiches
  3. Peanut Butter Toffee
  4. No Bake Cheesecake
  5. Layered Pudding Cups
  6. No Bake Cool Whip Pudding Pie
  7. Haystacks
I am always on the look-out for other no-bake easy desserts (something other than ice cream sundaes or popsicles) for the warmer months! What are your favorite, easy, summer time desserts??

This post is linked at:

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Menu Plan Monday 6/7-6/13

Last week's menu plan went pretty smoothly! I did have to get “take out” on Saturday night because we were busy all day and nothing was started in the crockpot. However, we were at my parents’ house unloading some sand on their property and were treated by them to Wendy’s.

For this week’s shopping trip, I stayed under my $100 budget. I purchased milk, eggs, fruit and then some deals that were not easy to pass up.

This week’s menus are cleaning out the freezer and pantry meals! It is the week before payday on the 15th so it is time to stretch what is on hand rather than do more shopping.

For this week, lunches listed are for the kids and I except for Monday! Unless we are having leftovers, our lunches are served with apple slices or carrot sticks along with fruit juice or water. Hubby usually takes a dinner leftover along with various snacks for his work lunch.

A special thanks to Laura-Organizing Junkie for hosting Menu Plan Monday! Need help with your menus; go check the over 400 other delicious meal plans that have been linked at Laura-Organizing Junkie’s site or look down in my right sidebar for my menu suggestion lists!

Sunday (6-7)

Breakfast: eggs, sausage or steak, hash browns, and jiffy muffins (boxed)

Lunch: leftovers

Dinner: skillet chicken gravy served with rice and green peas

Snack: snack basket

Monday (6-8)

Breakfast: “your choice”—due to an 8:30 appt

Lunch: sandwiches & chips

Dinner: roasted pork loin served with mashed potatoes & gravy, and corn

Snack: snack basket

Tuesday (6-9)

Breakfast: waffles and sausage

Lunch: spaghetti (leftovers)

Dinner: cube steak or hotdogs served with mac & cheese and green beans

Snack: cookies & milk

Wednesday (6-10)

Breakfast: French Toast (from freezer)

Lunch: sandwiches & chips

Dinner: beef gravy served with egg noodles and green peas

Snack: snack basket

Thursday (6-11)

Breakfast: Pancakes (from freezer)

Lunch: sandwich & chips

Dinner: roasted chicken breasts & drums served with rice & gravy and corn

Snack: snack basket

Friday (6-12)

Breakfast: cereal and toast

Lunch: sandwich & chips

Dinner: ???-- looking for inspiration

Snack: ice cream night

Saturday (6-13)

Breakfast: “Cook’s Choice”

Lunch: ???

Dinner: ???-- looking for inspiration

Snack: snack basket or popcorn

Meijer Deals 6/7-6/13

Just a reminder, that I am using a West Michigan sale ad and my Meijer does NOT double coupons! Also check the THREE pages ofMealbox coupons there are several cpns that match items in this week's ad! The coupons have had a change in wording, they now say, ONE COUPON PER TRANSACTION. NOT TO BE COMBINED WITH ANY OTHER MEIJER MANUFACTURER DISCOUNT COUPONS. So that means that we can use them with manufactor's cpns!!

Don't Forget to check out my friend, Kate at
Cooking During Stolen Moments has posted a few meal ideas based on what is on sale this week, head over and read her meal ideas!!!


~~FREE MILK: BUY 3 Nabisco Oreos, Fun Stix or Nilla Wafers, Newtons or Cakesters GET Free Meijer Gallon of Milk (Excludes chocolate and Organics)

~~Buy 4 Kellogg's Cereal 8 oz. or larger in a single transaction, Get $3 off instantly at register.

10 for $10 Deal Get the 11th item FREE Mix & Match Sale:

Aquafresh Tartar Control Whitening 6 oz. or Cavity Protection 6.4 oz

Closeup Toothpaste 6 oz.

Glade Aerosol 9 oz. Assorted varieties

Meijer Essentials Napkins 250 ct.

Meijer Premium Dinner Napkins 40 ct.

Meijer All Occasion Napkins 100 ct.

Meijer Plastic Party Plates 15-22 ct., Bowls 24 ct. or Cups 20 ct

Meijer Antiseptic Mouthwash 500 ml.

Meijer Essentials Paper Towels 1 big roll

Meijer Reusable Grocery Bag 1 ct

Meijer Slider Bags Freezer 10-15 ct. or storage 15-20 ct., Reclosable Bags Sandwich or snack 50 ct., Fold Top Sandwich Bags 150 ct.

Meijer Brown Lunch Bags 50 ct

Renuzit Adjustables 7.5 oz. Assorted varieties

Angel Soft Bath Tissue 4 rolls
50/1 cpn 04-19 RP

Armour Lunchmakers 2.6-3.3 oz. pkg. All varieties

Armour Sliced Pepperoni 3 oz. pkg

Aunt Jemima Breakfast Entrées 5.2-6.8 oz. All varieties

Banquet Brown 'N Serve Breakfast Links-7 oz. pkg. Frozen

Banquet Meals-5.75-10.25 oz. Assorted varieties

Ben & Jerry's Cup 3.6 oz

Bumble Bee Chunk White Tuna in Water or Ready to Eat Salad Kits

Bushs Best Variety Beans, Baked Beans or Chili Beans 15-16 oz. can. Select varieties

Del Monte Fruit Naturals 8 oz

Del Monte Tomatoes 14.5 oz. can. Select varieties

Frito Lay Lunch Box 2-5 oz. Select varieties

Gatorade 32 oz. bottle. All varieties

Gerber 2nd Foods 2 pk./3.5 oz.

Glaceau Smart Water Glaceau Smart Water

Green Giant Box or Poly Bag Vegetables 7-12 oz. Assorted varieties

Haagen-Dazs Cup 4 oz

Hunts Snack Pack Puddings or Gels 4/14 oz. All varieties

Jenos Crisp 'n Tasty Pizza

Totino's 15 Ct Pizza Rolls Assorted varieties

Joy Liquid Dish Soap 30 oz. Assorted varieties

Kings Hawaiian Rolls 4 pk
75/1 cpn

Kool Aid Kool Bursts Fruit Drinks 6/6.75 oz. squeeze bottles. All varieties

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Dinner-Premium 7.25-7.3 oz., whole grain 6 oz., shapes 5.5 oz. box

Kraft Easy Mac cups. 2.05 oz. Select varieties
$1/2 cpn

Mangos each

Meijer Applesauce 24-25 oz. jar. Original, cinnamon, unsweetened or chunky

Meijer Cinnamon Rolls

Meijer Jumbo Biscuits

Meijer Frozen Pizza Dough 16 oz

Meijer Ground Turkey Frozen. 16 oz. pkg

Meijer Marshmallows 10-10.5 oz. Regular or miniature

Meijer Microwave Popcorn 3 ct. All varieties

Meijer Organics Whole White or Whole Mini Bella Mushrooms 8 oz pkg

Meijer Pasta Sauce 26 oz. jar. Select varieties

Meijer Premium Chunk White Chicken in Water 5 oz. can

Meijer Soft Cookies 10-11 oz. Select varieties

Meijer Tomato or Vegetable Juice 46 oz. can

Meijer White Hot Dog or White or Seeded Hamburger Buns 8 ct. pkg

Nabisco Barnum's Animals Crackers 2.1 oz. or Go-Paks or Carry Me Packs 1.5-4 oz. Select varieties

Organic Baby-Cut Carrots or Green Onions 1 lb. bag or Green Onions 4.5 oz.

Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Sierra Mist, Mountain Dew or 7-Up 2 Liter Bottle

Popsicle 12 ct

Rice A Roni or Pasta Roni : 3.8-7.2 oz. box or Pasta Roni 4.6-6.2 oz. box. Select varieties.

Starbucks Java Chip Cup Pint

Wishbone Dressing 8 oz. bottle

Wonder Classic White Bread 20 oz. loaf or White Hot Dog or Hamburger Buns 8 ct. pkg

Kens Dressing 8 oz. bottle
$1/2 cpn 05-03 S

Aunt Millies Butter Top White or Wheat Bread or English Muffins 22 oz. loaf or English Muffins 6 ct. pkg
35/1 cpn 05-10 RP

Bar S Jumbo Meat Franks, Chicken Franks or Bologna 16 oz. pkg
$1/2 cpn 05-10 RP

Hunts Ketchup 24 oz. bottle
20/1 cpn 05-10 S

Pillsbury Frosting or Cake Mix-Select varieties
35/1 cpn 05-17 RP(coupon is for reduce sugar variety if included in sale)

Shedds Country Crock Spread 15 oz. tub or 2/7.5 oz. tubs. Assorted varieties
25/1 cpn 05-17 RP

Chef Boyardee Canned Pasta with Meat 7.25-7.5 oz. microwaveable bowl or 14.75-15 oz. can. All varieties
35/3 cpn 05-31 S

Other Grocery Deals:

Blueberries (pint containers) 2/$3

California Peaches or Nectarines 99¢/lb

California Sweet Cherries $2.48/lb

Crystal Light 1.3-3.4 oz. canister. Makes 10-12 quarts. All varieties. ~~ Buy Two, Get Two FREE!
$2/2 cpn

Dole Classic Iceberg Salad 12 oz. pkg. 98¢

Garden Fresh Salsa, Hummus or Chips 10-16 oz. All varieties. ~~ Buy Two, Get One FREE!

Lays Potato Chips 10.5-11 oz. Assorted varieties. ~~ 50% off

Meijer Fresh Grade A Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts $1.99/lb

Meijer Fresh Whole Chicken 98¢/lb

Meijer Gallon Milk All varieties excluding chocolate and Meijer Organic $1.98

Meijer Grade A Large Eggs 98¢

Nabisco 100 Calorie Packs or Variety or Tray Packs Select varieties ~~ 50% off

Marzetti Salad Dressing 2/$5
55/1 cpn 04-05 RP and $1/1 cpn

Johnsonville Smoked Brats or Breakfast Pork Sausage Links or Patties 13.5-16 oz. pkg. All varieties 2/$5
$1/1 cpn 04-05 S2

General Mills Cereal Select varieties. 3/$10
$1/3 cpn 05-03 S

Kraft Pasteurized Prepared Cheese Product Singles 14.7-16 oz. pkg. American or 2% American 2/$5
$1/1 cpn 05-17 S1(Coupon is for Deli Deluxe variety if included in sale) and

Nabisco Ritz Crackers13.7-16 oz., Ritz Bits 7.5 oz. or Toasted Chips 8.1 oz. 2/$5
B1G1 cpn 05-17 S1

Athenos Feta 5-6 oz. pkg. All varieties. 2/$5
55/1 cpn 05-31 S

Kelloggs Cereal Select varieties 4/$10
$1/1 cpn 06-07 RP

Other NON-Grocery Deals:

Meijer First Aid Creams and Ointments ~~ Buy One, Get One identical item FREE!

Lysol All Purpose Cleaner, Kitchen Cleaner, Bathroom Cleaner or Toilet Bowl Cleaner Assorted varieties. ~~ 50% off
$1/2 cpn 04-26 S

Lysol Disinfectant Spray 19 oz. 2/$8
$1/1 cpn 05-03 S

Lysol Disinfecting Wipes 80 ct. 2/$8
$1/2 cpn 04-26 S

Bic C3 Advance or Soleil Disposable Razor or NEW Bic Bella 4-Blade Disposable Razors 2/$9
$3/1 cpn 05-17 S1

Reynolds Wrap Aluminum Foil 75 sq. ft., Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil 50 sq. ft. or Heavy Duty Non-Stick 35 sq. ft. $2.29
$1/1 cpn 05-17 S1

Always Jumbo Pack 36-40 ct. $7
$1/2 cpn 06-07 PG

Old Spice Body Wash or Old Spice Red Zone Body Wash 2/$7
50/1 cpn 06-07 PG

Ban Invisible Solid, Clear Gel or Roll-On 2.6 oz., Clear Gel 2.25 oz. or Roll-On 3.5 oz. ~~ Buy One Get One of equal or lesser value FREE!
40/1 cpn 06-07 S

Nature Made Vitamins and Supplements All Varieties ~~ Buy One, Get One identical item FREE!
$1/1 cpn 06-07 S

***Please take the time to check out your local ad, which you can find here!! IF Meijer is not your store of choice, head over to BeCentsAble's Grocery Gathering!!