Sunday, June 24, 2012

Another Week of Deals: Drug Stores & Target

Running a little late today with getting this up. Most likely you've already read about this week's great deals on someone else's blog. I'm ok with that, better late than never!

Here are the best deals I see this week and MY shopping scenarios:

Target- for full match up go here
Transaction #1:
1-Venus Embrace Razor $8.49
1-Venus Cartridge 4 ct. $14.99
-FREE Venus Razor (up to $12.99) wyb Venus Cartridge 6/3 PG 
Pay: $14.99 
Get: $5 GC

Transaction #2:
1-Strawberries 1 lb $1.79 
2-Lysol Dual Action Disinfecting Wipes 35 ct $2.29 (PC thru 7/7)
-Try Me FREE Rebate peelies or print form HERE
-$5 Venus GC
Pay: $1.37

Walgreens- for full ad match up go here
Transaction #1:
1- Bayer Advanced 20 ct $3.99
-$2/1 Bayer Advanced Aspirin printable here
Pay $1.99
Get $1 RR
* FYI we did not get the $3 Bayer coupon everyone is talking about :(

Transaction #2:
1- Colgate Toothbrush 360 Clean, MaxFresh, MaxWhite or Total $2.99
-$1 Bayer RR
Pay: $1.99
Get $2 RR

Transaction #3:
1-Post or Quaker Cereal $2.49
($1/1 Post  SS 06/17, $0.50/1 Post Pebbles RP 06/10, $1/1 Post SS 06/17) 
-$2 Colgate RR
Pay: $.49 (I'll be getting the Quaker because that's what my family prefers)
*If you use one of those Q's grab a filler item!

Rite Aid for full ad match up go here
Transaction #1:

1-Schick HydroShave Gel $2.49
-$0.75/1 Hydro Shave Gel 6/10 SS
Pay: $1.74
Get a $1 Up+ Reward (limit 4)

Transaction #2:
1-Schick Hydro3.Razor $8.99
-$4/1 Hydro 3 coupon 6/10 SS

-$1 Schick Up+ RewardPay: $3.99
Get a $3 Up+ Reward (limit 4)

Transaction #3:
2-Pantene Shampoo, Conditioner or Stylers 2/$7
-$3/2 coupon 5/13 PG1-Gain Dishwashing Liquid 9 oz. $0.88

-$0.50/1 coupon 5/13 PG
-$3 Schick Up+ Reward

Pay: $1.38

CVS- for a full ad match up go here
Transaction #1:
1-Crest Glide floss 1pk $3.39 

-$.50/1 coupon 6/3 PG 
1- Xtra detergent $1.49Pay: $4.38
Get: $2 ECB

Transaction #2:
1- Gillette Venus, ProGlide, or Power Fusion razor 1ct $9.99 

-$2/1 Venus coupon 5/13 PG 
- $2 Crest ECB

Pay: $5.99
Get: $4 ECB

Transaction #3:
2-Coppertone Sun care (excludes sticks and twin packs) $19.88 
-$5/2 coupon 6/24 SS 

(or $3/2 coupon 5/20 SS or  $1/1 coupon here or 5/20 SS or 6/24 SS)
-$4 Gillette ECB
Pay: $10.88
Get: $8 ECB

Transaction #4:
4- Post Fruity or Cocoa Pebbles 2/$4
-$1/2 Post coupons found here x2
4- Nabisco cookies or crackers 3/$4
-$1/2 Nabisco coupons here x2
1- Scott Choose-a-size mega rolls 6 pk $5.49
-$1/1 coupon 5/13 SS (Expires 6/24) or 6/10 SS or the $0.70/1 coupon found here 
2- M&M’s $3 
($1/1 coupons in the May All You but I don't buy the magazine, so not factoring those in)
1-Scott bathroom tissue 12-18pk $7.49
-$1/1 coupon 5/13 SS (Expires 6/24) or 6/10 SS or $0.70/1 coupon found here

-$8 Coppertone ECB
Get:$10 gas card (I'm stashing these away for our Disney trip in September!)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Recipes, Recipes, Recipes!

This whole combining blog business is driving me crazy! But I think it's done!  So the last step was just completed with the updating of the recipe list! That was a task let me tell ya! Be sure to check it out, lots of new recipes that weren't cataloged before!

Grocery Deals June 19-25

Just a quick run down of deals at the local stores this week. If you see a great deal let me know!


Del Monte Ketchup $.88
Jimmy Dean rolled Sausage $2.99
-$1/1 printable (no longer available; check your binder)
-$1/2 printable here (zipcode 39564)

Winn Dixie
For a full listing of great deals at Winn Dixie head over here to Winn Dixie on a Dime!

Betty Crocker Specialty Potatoes BOGO $2.19
-$.50/2 printable here (banner on main page)
Michelinas Frozen meals 10/$10
-$1/5 printable here
(I use the Michelinas fettuccine alfredo as a time saver for meals sometimes. Great flavor!)


Pull Ups Flushable Wipes $1.64
- $1/1 (from Pull Ups House Party)
-$1/1 printable here
-$.75/1 SS 6/17

Cutter Citronelle candle $.97
-$1/1 Cutter product RP 5/20

Milky Way bars $.74
- $.75/2 printable (no longer available?; check your binder)

Publix( don't feel like driving to Fairhope or Daphne? Ad match at the Ocean Springs or Pascagoula Walmart!)

Check out I Heart Publix for all the deals!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Deals and a Rant

First the rant, then the deal! You ready?

Nothing irritates me more as a couponer and a "coupon blogger" than to see people cheating the system!  Here's what started this rant "Stores seem to be wising up to coupon usage lately, ie not accepting slightly expired Qs."- from the Hip2Save comments section on a recent post.  Ahhh! Are you kidding me!?! Not accepting slightly expired coupons? Really! I'm not at all surprised There is an expiration date for a reason! 

Here are a few pointers:

  • If the coupon says "Huggies Pull Ups" that doesn't mean "any Huggies diaper" that means "Huggies Pull Ups".
  • Look at the wording not at the picture.
  • Follow the stores current policy.
  • Don't cheat the system! You mess it up and you've messed it up for everyone!
Ok, rant over :) Here's the deal at Rite Aid. I haven't shopped at Rite Aid in probably close to a year. But today's ad was just too good to pass up because I had coupons that worked!

Transaction #1:
4- Barilla Pasta 4/$5
- $1/1 printable q (check your binders; no longer available) x2

Pay $3 get back $1 Up+ reward

Transaction #2:
1- Oral B Manuel Toothbrush $3.49
- $1/1 manufacturer q (found in toothpaste box MONTHS ago so check your binders)
-$1/1 Barilla Up+ reward

Pay $1.49 get back $2 Up+ reward

Transaction #3:
4- Kellogg's Cereals $1.97
1- gallon milk $3.49
- $2/4 printable q (check your binders; no longer available mine expired today 6/17!)
- $3 off milk wyb 3 Kelloggs cereal (found at Rouse's on Kellogg's cereal boxes)
- $2 Oral B Up+ reward

Pay $4.37

Total spent: $8.86 
Saved 75%

Monday, June 11, 2012

Coupon Class Coming Soon!

The next coupon class will be Thursday, June 28th  7 pm at Hancock Bank Biloxi (888 Howard Ave.) Cost is $10 per person if you preregister or $15 at the door. Each participant will leave with a booklet full of information and there will be door prizes.

Learn how to coupon the ethical way! No cheating or hoarding taught here! Learn how to get items YOUR family needs at deep discounts!

Space is limited so preregister today!

Register Here

No time to cook? Freezer cooking to the rescue! Part 2

My plan had been to do round 2 of my freezer cooking last Wednesday but that did not happen! So here we are almost a week later and I got it done! So as a review here is the menu for last week and this week. Now obviously since I didn't get around to getting my freezer cooking done the way I wanted the menu adjust slightly, but we are still on the right track!

Mondaywaffle iron french toast, corndog muffins, chicken gyros with hummus
Tuesday- yogurt and granola, peanut butter & jelly sandwiches, beef tips in gravy
Wednesday- Cinnamon Roll Oatmeal cups, ham & cheese roll ups, Italian crockpot chicken
Thursday- cereal, chicken soft tacos, Creole Daube
Friday- Blueberry Muffins, mac & cheese, Divine Chicken
Saturday- Breakfast Burritos, pizza bites, Baked Ham
Sunday- fruit & toast, Creamy Chicken Taquitos, leftovers

Monday- yogurt & granola, cheese quesadillas, mini meatloaves
Tuesday- breakfast burritos, pb & banana, pork chop bake
Wednesdaylemon blueberry scones, pizza bites, slow cooker beef fajitas
Thursday- cereal, bbq cups, leftovers
Friday- Waffles, nachoes, eat out
Saturday- scrambled eggs & bacon, ham & cheese sandwiches, Chicken soft tacos
Sunday- biscuits & ham, eat @ my mom's, leftovers from Mom's

Here is the order I went in:

  • Preheated the oven to 350 degrees.
  • I threw all the chicken soft tacos ingredients into the crockpot. 
  • Mixed up the banana bread, started the chicken breast to boil for the taquitos, pulled out the cream cheese to soften.
  • Started the pizza dough for pizza bites.
  • Put all the Creole Daube ingredients in my other crockpot.
  • Put together pizza bites. Cooked bacon in the oven at the same time as banana bread.
  • Pulled out bacon and the banana bread to cool. Put pizza bites in oven.
  • Shredded the chicken breast in my kitchen aid mixer with the paddle attachment (one of the best things I've discovered on pinterest so far!) 
  • Made up chicken taquitos; pulled out pizza bites.
  • Put taquitos in the oven; started lemon blueberry scones.
  • sauteed onions and bell pepper; scrambled eggs. Made breakfast burritos.
  • That evening the chicken soft tacos are done; put a little meat in the tortillas with cheese; wrap in plastic wrap and put in a freezer bag. 
  • Ate half the creole daube for dinner; froze the rest.
Chicken Soft Tacos
3 chicken breasts
1 jar enchilada sauce
1 pkg. taco seasoning

Dump everything in your crockpot. Cook in crockpot 4 hours high or 8 hours low. 

Pizza Bites- adapted from Annies-eats

1 T. instant yeast or 1 envelope (use the pizza dough yeast if you buy the envelopes)
4 c. bread flour (or you could use all purpose or a mix of whole wheat)
2 T. olive oil
1/2 c. warm water
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. garlic salt
1 1/4 c. room temp. water 

1 pouch of pepperoni
block of mozzarella, cubed
3 T. butter, melted
Italian seasoning
Parmesan cheese
garlic powder

Mix yeast and 1/2c. warm water. I find even though it's "instant" yeast, my dough rises better when I take this step. Mix all your dry ingredients in your mixing bowl; add in remaining ingredients and yeast. Use dough hook and mix until well incorporated and forms a ball.  Let rest for 5-10 min. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 

Tear the dough into 20-24 golf ball sized pieces. Top with a piece of pepperoni and a cube of cheese. Wrap the edges of the dough around and pinched closed. Place in greased pie plate or pizza stone; edges should not touch each other. Repeat with remaining dough. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until lightly brown.  

Melt butter and mix in garlic powder and Italian seasoning. Brush over baked pizza bites and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.

Banana Bread- Money Saving Mom
2 cups flour (all-purpose, whole-wheat, or a mixture of both)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sugar
2 eggs, beaten
3-4 bananas, mashed
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3 Tablespoons milk

Stir together dry ingredients. Beat together remaining ingredients. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and blend until just combined. Pour into greased loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the bread comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack.

Chicken Taquitos- adapted from Our Best Bites
1/3 C (3 oz) cream cheese, softened
1/4 C green salsa
1/2 t cumin
1 t chili powder
1/2 t onion powder
1/4 t granulated garlic, or garlic powder
1 chicken breast, cooked and finely shredded (I used my kitchen aid mixer with the paddle)
1 C grated pepperjack or monterey jack cheese

small flour tortillas
kosher salt
cooking spray
Heat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly coat with cooking spray or use your pampered chef large baking pan.
Toss everything (except the tortillas) into your mixer and blend until incorporated. Heat your tortillas a few at a time in the microwave between damp paper towels for 20-30 seconds to keep them from cracking or unrolling as easy. Use about 2-3 tablespoons of the chicken mixture in each tortilla, careful to leave about 1/2 from edge so you can roll them up; roll it up as tight as you can.
Lay them all seam side down and don't let them touch. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until crisp and start to brown. To freeze, let cool completely and place in a freezer bag with the following instructions: Heat in microwave 1 min to thaw. Crisp in oven at 425 for 5 min or until crisp again.

Creole Daube
1- small/medium roast (a cheap cut is fine)
1 large onions, chunked
1 large green bell pepper, cut into stripes
2 T. minced garlic
1 large can whole tomatoes (I used San Marzano style), chop up as you pull them out.
1 small can of tomato sauce
1 pinch of sugar1 cup water

2 beef bullion cubes
Splash of Worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper to taste1/2 teaspoon Tony Cachere's 

Put EVERYTHING in the crockpot at the same time and cook on low for 6 hours or until the roast is falling apart. Pull out the roast and shred up. Serve over cooked spaghetti noodles, garlic bread and maybe a salad. 

Breakfast Burritos
1 dozen eggs, scambled
1/2 bell pepper, diced
1/2 onion, diced
1 c. cheese, your choice
bacon or sausage, cooked and crumbled
20 tortillas

Saute onions and bell pepper; stir in scrambled eggs and meat. Warm tortillas between damp paper towels for 20-30 seconds to prevent breakage. Put 2-3T of eggs mixture in tortilla and top with cheese. Roll up tight. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in ziplock bag; heat in microwave 1 min. or until warmed.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Mom, I'm Bored!

SF Beaverton
Summer is here and it officially starts the continues chant of "Mom, I'm Bored!" We do not homeschool during the summer. I need the break as much as they do! We do small things here and there just to keep the summer brain mush syndrome at bay. We've worked too hard during the school year to lose it all now! I usually grab one of those "all in one" workbooks to help them review what they've learned.

This year I'm taking a different approach! I've seen all these great ideas on Pinterest for boredom jars, summer bucket lists, etc. All great ideas, but not doable in our house with a limited budget and usually only the use of a vehicle a few times a week. I've combined all these ideas into one, including a schedule to help keep us on task, off the computer (mostly for me) and away from the tv for hours on end!  

I made my schedule all girly and colorful, don't feel like you have to do the same. Make your own! These are laminated and hanging on one of our school cabinets. 

I KNOW we will not follow this to the exact minute, other things will pop up, illness, vacation, unexpected play dates. So we are completely flexible, but I hope this will help curb some of the "Mom, I'm bored!" that we all hear each summer. 

A description of activities, etc. will be posted soon.

Have you done a project like this? How did it turn out? I'd love to hear your comments.

Monday, June 4, 2012

No time to cook? Freezer Cooking to the rescue!

I'm a planner, a list maker, a "do it ahead if I can" kind of girl with grand hopes of organization that often fall short of my expectations. If you are a blog crawler or Pinterest junky like me, I'm sure you've seen countless posts and links to elaborate Once a Month Cooking or fill your freezer in 4 weeks kind of plans.  I'm a planner but not like that! I don't know how these "super moms" do it. I have two kids, a husband and a dog under my feet daily. I'm doing good to get the house picked up and dinner on the table without losing my mind. Sometimes the house doesn't get picked up, but rarely does dinner not go on the table when my hubby walks in the door. 

I'm a big proponent of budgeting and menu planning. I rotate between planning 1 to 2 weeks at a time but have always been overwhelmed at the thought of planning an entire month for several reasons. I like to take advantage of sales and discounts. If chicken is 69 cents a lb this week guess what we'll be eating a LOT of next week! Plus putting all of this together myself and making a lot of it homemade really helps health wise since there isn't all that yucky stuff mixed in! Now don't get me wrong, there is a reason this page is called "Mostly Homemade", because I cannot and will not cook everything from scratch all the time because I don't have the time! Again I say, I don't know how these "super moms" do it! Whatever they are taking they need to share! 

I'm trying to make the most of our budget and my time. Starting next week I'll be keeping my nephew 5 days a week (3 of them at my sister's house) and I got to thinking how hard that is going to make cooking dinner at a reasonable hour since I won't be getting home on those days until after 6 pm. So something had to give. I decided to give freezer cooking a try.  So below you will find my strategy, menu plan and recipes. Trust me I know there is a LOT of room for improvement!
  1. I made a list of all the meat, veggies, mixes, etc. I already had on hand.  Use up what you already have! Trust me your budget will thank you!
  2. I made a list of recipes I wanted to try and some I already use and I know my family will eat, trying to avoid recipes with weird or expensive ingredients. I filled out my menu with breakfast, lunch and dinner. Now keep in mind, I do not always make exactly what's on the menu on that specific day, but I do make what's on the menu at some point that week. You've saved nothing and wasted a lot of time if you make something you're family will not eat. 
  3.  I made my shopping list, matched coupons and hunted down the cheapest prices on the items I needed. Adjusting my list of recipes if necessary. I'm not saying everyone should coupon, but how could you not? I've cut our budget to $100-$125 every two weeks for EVERYTHING groceries, toiletries, paper products, pets, etc. 
I could have started this morning by chopping everything up, but I didn't. Or I could have set down and written all the information on my containers before I started putting it all together, but I didn't. Or I could have been even more organized and finished 30 meals in one day, but I didn't. Do you know why? I have a life outside my kitchen! A 2 yr. screaming from the bathroom to "come wipe me!", a dog outside losing his mind because the meter reader walked up or a delivery man showed up, laundry that needs to be switched out and folded and I have yet to get a bath today, in fact I'm still in my pajamas. Is that too much information?

Anyway, here is the menu plan followed by the recipes in the order I made them today.  It took a total of about 3 1/2 hours to do everything, but that was with LOTS of interruptions.

* I allow for leftovers once a week and eating out once every two weeks.

Monday- waffle iron french toast, corndog muffins, chicken gyros with hummus
Tuesday- yogurt and granola, peanut butter & jelly sandwiches, beef tips in gravy
Wednesday- Cinnamon Roll Oatmeal cups, ham & cheese roll ups, Italian crockpot chicken
Thursday- cereal, chicken soft tacos, Creole Daube
Friday- Blueberry Muffins, mac & cheese, Divine Chicken
Saturday- Breakfast Burritos, pizza bites, Baked Ham
Sunday- fruit & toast, Creamy Chicken Taquitos, leftovers

Monday- yogurt & granola, cheese quesadillas, mini meatloaves
Tuesday- breakfast burritos, pb & banana, pork chop bake
Wednesday- lemon blueberry scones, pizza bites, slow cooker beef fajitas
Thursday- cereal, bbq cups, leftovers
Friday- Waffles, nachoes, eat out
Saturday- scrambled eggs & bacon, ham & cheese sandwiches, Chicken soft tacos
Sunday- biscuits & ham, eat @ my mom's, leftovers from Mom's

*In the freezer I'll still have one each of Creole Daube, Divine Chicken, Chicken taquitos, beef fajitas and Greek chicken to carry over to future meals.

Corndog Muffins
Makes 1 dozen

2 boxes Jiffy corn muffin mix
2 cooked hot dogs, chopped
2 eggs
2/3 c. milk

Mix all ingredients in bowl. Bake in muffin tins according to directions on box. Let cool completely before freezing. Reheat in microwave for 30 sec. or until warm.

Greek Marinated Chicken- adapted from The Girl Who Ate Everything
Double recipe to freeze two meals.

2 teaspoons minced garlic
Juice of 1 lemon (2-3 Tablespoons)
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar 
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 
2 heaping Tablespoons plain Greek yogurt 
1 Tablespoon dried oregano 
Salt and pepper 
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I pound mine out kind of flat to ensure even cooking)

Mix marinade; add chicken. Marinate for 30 min. -1 hour. Then bake, broil or grill the chicken. Serve on pita bread with any toppings you like. 

*To Freeze: Mix marinade, pour over chicken and freeze. Pull out the morning you are going to cook and let thaw. 

Divine Chicken- adapted from Ring Around The Rosies
Makes 2 meals

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
4 cups baby carrots
4 cups broccoli florets
4 cans cream of chicken soup
2 cups milk
salt & pepper to taste
 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning (I used Wildtree spaghetti sauce seasoning)

Put split chicken, carrots and broccoli between two bags. Label bag with following: Add two cans cream of chicken soup and 1 cup of milk and seasonings. Cook on low 8 hours or high 4 hours.

Beef Tips in Gravy- adapted from Ring Around The Rosies

2 lbs. stew meat
3 cans french onion soup
4 cups water
2 cups frozen broccoli
rice or noodles

Put meat and soup in ziplock back. Label bag with: Add 4 cups of water. Add broccoli 30 minutes before finished cooking. Cook on high 8 hours or low 4 hours. Serve over rice or noodles.

Blueberry Yogurt Muffins with Streusel
Makes 6 XL muffins or 1 dozen regular muffins

1 white or yellow cake mix
2 eggs
1/2 c. applesauce
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 c. greek yogurt
1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Streusel topping ingredients:
1/2 stick butter, softened
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 cup rolled oats

Sprinkle streusel on top. Bake at 400 degrees for 20-23 or until golden.  Let rest in pan for 5 minutes before removing.

Slow Cooker Beef Fajitas- adapted from Ring Around the Rosie

2 lb beef round steak cut into strips (across the grain)
2 8 oz cans diced tomatoes w/ chiles
1 large onion or 2 small
1 green pepper, cut into strips
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp chili powder
2 tsp cumin
*add a chopped jalapeno if desired

Split everything  into two bags. Label with: Cook on high 8 hours or low for 4 hours. Serve with all the normal fajita fixings.

Applesauce Granola- adapted from Fake Ginger

4 C old fashioned oats
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 C applesauce, unsweetened
1/2 C brown sugar
1 T butter

In a medium saucepan, combine all except oats and cinnamon.  Warm the mixture then add oats along with 1 tsp. cinnamon.  Stir until all the oats are well coated.  Then, spread the mixture on a large pan (I used my large baking stone from Pampared Chef lined with parchment paper)  Bake at 300 degrees for 50 minutes, stirring every 10.  Cool completely & store in an airtight container.  

Round 2 of Freezer Cooking will be next week. Breakfast burritos, chicken soft tacos, creole daube, banana bread, chicken taquitos and pizza bites!