Monday, September 3, 2012

Couponing 101 *Lesson 1* Why should we use coupons?

Why should we use coupons?

Many families embrace couponing to lower their budget, pay off bills, or to save for a nice vacation. All of these are great. It's awesome to see your bills get lower and lower each month. :) I believe though that there can be a bigger purpose involved. One of the main reasons that I use coupons is that so I can help others with what God has blessed me with. 

II Corinthians 8:7  NIV
Just as you excel in everything - in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us - see that you also excel in this grace of giving.

 Now as you abound and excel and are at the front in everything—in faith, in expressing yourselves, in knowledge, in all zeal, and in your love for us—[see to it that you come to the front now and] abound and excel in this gracious work [of almsgiving] also.

Jesus talks about giving throughout the Bible,  and I believe that it is the Churches responsibility to take care of those in need. 

Using coupons has given me the ability to give more than I would have been able to had I not discovered a way to save money on things that I already buy.

Over the next few weeks, I'll be sharing some tips I've learned in the 3+ years that I've been couponing effectively.  I'll try to post a couple lessons a week. My next lesson will be about taking things slowly. Using coupons doesn't have to be time consuming or overwhelming, you don't need a binder. In fact, I usually don't  clip most of my coupons until I'm ready to make my shopping list. I'll also be sharing items that are great for donations to Church food pantries, and other places that need donations as well.

I'd love to hear from you. Please feel free to email me at


Please let me know of any questions or tips that you have anytime.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Menu Plan for Wendnesday 8/29

Here's the menu for today. Menu planning doesn't have to be complicated, it has really simplified things for me so I know how to plan for the week.


I've been straightening the house up the morning, and I forgot about eating breakfast. ;P

1 egg  - a dozen were about $2
1 bowl of cheerios -  the box was $1

Sophie ( I pack her a breakfast, lunch, and snack  for school)

1 yogurt .45
1 rainsins 1 large canister was $2.00, there's over 10 servings in the canister
1 juice .18


Greek Yogurt .50
Tuna Sandwich (.89) with celery( $1.40 for a package of celery hearts)  on whole wheat $2.00 for a loaf 

2 Hot Dogs $1
Hot Dog Rolls .25
1 Ritz Crackerfulls box was $1

1 bag of Quaker Quakes $1.25

1 uncrustables .40
ziplock bag of Cheez crackers - box was $1
1 fruit snack .10
1 box juice .18

Sophie Snack
 1 ziplock bag of teddy grahams - box was $1


Breakfast for Dinner
Pancakes - given to us by my mother in law
waffles - about $1 for a pack

Frozen veggies
cereal - $1 for the box
peanut butter sandwiches $2 for loaf of bread, $1.50 for jar of peanut butter
snackwells 100 calorie pack .20

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Best Deals at Martin's this week

I hope everyone is having a great week!  Here are some of my favorite deals at Martin's this week!

These are simply the coupons listed, many of them have limitations on them (specific varieties,sizes, one per person, no more than 4 like, no other coupon may be used with this coupon, no doubling, and so on) .Please briefly review these coupons before using them. Please let me know if you see any errors, or anything that needs to be added below.

Produce :

Giant Brand Frozen Vegetables *select varieties* $1 ea
Corn on the Cob .20 ea *price valid through Labor Day*
Eggplant, Green, or Yellow Squash $1.49 lb
Whole Watermelon 13-17 LB $4.00 LB *price valid through Labor Day

Arnold Sandwich Thins Buy One Get One Free

Sara Lee Bread *select varieties* $2
Stroehmann Dutch Country Bread $2

Giant  White Hot Dog/ Hamburger Rolls , or Italian Bread $1
 Chi Chi's Tortilla 12 - 17 oz 2/$3
 $1/2 Chi Chi's products

Gatorade 32 FL oz .88
Giant Soda 2 liter .79
Pepsi 6/12 pk $4/$10 MUST by 4
Juicy Juice  *make sure the coupon for the Fruitfuls variety is included, * $2.50
Use the $1/1 Juicy Juice Fruitfuls coupon

Acadia Nutrient Water *select varieties* 20 FL oz .88

Healthy Choice canned soup $1

Giant Brand Cereal *select varieties* $2/4


Chi Chi's Salsa 2/$3
Here's a printable coupon  $1/2 Chi Chi's products
French's Yellow  Mustard 18-20 oz  $1.50
There's a coupon for .30/1 in the 6/24 Smartsource (SS)
Kraft Barbeque Sauce $1
There's a coupon for $1/3 in the 8/19 SS
Kraft Mayo 12 oz  $2.50 (check out my scenario here  for a way to get a great deal on this)printable coupon is not for the correct size
$1/2 coupon in the 8/19 SS
Kraft Mayo 22-30 oz
$1/1 Kraft Mayo coupon

Doritos Buy One Get One Free
UTZ chips Buy One Get One Free  *select varieties*
Keebler Snack Crackers 2/$4
.55/2 Keebler Sandwich Crackers in the 6 ct larger any flavor 7/29 RP

Annie's Mac and Cheese $1
Rice a Roni $1
Giant Pasta Sauce $1

Cleaning/Paper Plastics
Surf Laundry Detergent $2/5
There's a coupon for $1/1 in the 7/29 Red Plum (RP)

Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts $1.99/lb
Giant Fresh Country Style Pork Ribs $2/lb
Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh 3/$10 (check out my scenario here for a way to get a great deal on this)
$1/1 Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh Coupon

International Delight Creamer 3/$5
$1.50/1 coupon
Ore-Ida potatoes *select varieties* 3/$6
$1/3 Ore Ida potatoes 8/19 SS
Luigis Italian Ice 3/$5
There's a coupon 7/22

Menu Plan for Tuesday

Menu planning is one of main strategies that I have used to lower my families grocery budget. It doesn't have to be an elaborate list or anything, you can even switch things up if you want. When I menu plan it gives me an idea of what to make, so I don't have to make any decisions at the last minute, it holds me accountable to my weight loss goals as well. I have only 3 people in my family, so your menu plan might look a  little different.


2 Greek Yogurt .50 ea at Martin's
2 Quaker Chewy Granola Bars .18 ea at Martins
plums .99 lb at Walmart
raisins large canister for $2.00 at walmart, will probably last us a couple weeks
bagel $1.25 for 6 at Martins

Hebrew National Hot Dogs $2.50 or so  at Target
Hot Dog Rolls .99 at Martin's
Cheese less than $2 a pack at Target
Celery Hearts $1.40 a pack at Martin's

Hot Cocoa Diet 25c
Ritz Crackerfulls 1 a box at Martin's
Snackwells 100 Calorie Packs at Martin's
Hot Tea

Pasta .50 at Martin's
Ground Turkey I got on Markdown
Pasta Sauce $1 at Martin's
Frozen Veggies

Peanut Butter Sandwiches $1.50 for peanut butter at Martin's
Frozen Veggies

Monday, August 27, 2012

Double Promo on Kraft products this week!

Remember the great Kraft Promo I posted about last week? Here's a great way to use it along with another promo. 

Here are the two promo's that I'm using together in the scenario below
Buy 10 participating Kraft items, get a $10 Catalina coupon off your next purchase Check out all the details here
Buy 3 participating Kraft items and get a FREE loaf of Giant Bread up to $2.50 in Value

*I have not shopped using this transaction yet, so if you try this before Friday please let me know how it goes. One thing to make sure is that each loaf of the bread is free. Sometimes the Martin's registers have an issue when you're doing a promo a few times in the same transaction.*

Here's a scenario with some of the included items

(4)Kraft Mayo 22 oz $2.50
- (2) $1/2 Coupon in the 8/12 Smartsource (SS)
(2)Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh must be 7 oz +  $3/10

- (2) $1/1 Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh

(4) Kraft Singles Cheese must be 12 oz + $2.50
 -  (2)  $1/1 Kraft Singles
(3) Loaves of Giant Brand Bread FREE

Subtotal $30
Coupons $6
Out of Pocket for this transaction $24
Catalina coupon for $10 off next order, you can do this in the same shopping trip. Have another transaction ready for other items you need and you'll be all set :)
Total after Catalina promo $14

 4 bottles of Mayo
 2 Lunchmeat
 4 Cheese
 3 Loaves of bread
 That makes each item about $1 each
This is a great price for cheese lunchmeat and mayo!

Kraft Catalina Promo

New promo at Martins and Food Lion
Valid between 8/19/12-9/15/12

Buy participating Kraft Foods products and save up to $10 on a future order

Buy 3-5 get $2.00
Buy 6-9 get $5
Buy 10 or more get $10

This come in the form of a catalina coupon for X amount off a future purchase. In my experience, you can use these the same day on the next transaction.

Here are the participating items. These can be mixed and matched Coupons can be used on these as well. In my experience, they can also be rolled. You can earn one in a transaction use it to pay toward the next transaction, and earn a second reward. There is no limit to the amount of these catalina rewards that you can earn.

Crystal Light canister 8 qt
Crystal Light On the Go 7 ct +
Gevalia 12 oz
Kraft Deluxe Mac and Cheese 14 oz+
Kraft Dressings 16 oz +
Kraft Shreds 8 oz +
Kraft Singles 12 oz +
Maxwell House 1-3 LB (10.5 oz+)
Mayo/Miracle Whip Light/ Low Cal 12oz +
Mio 1.08 oz +
Oscar Mayer Hot Dogs 16 oz +
Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh 7 oz +
Oscar Mayer Lunchables FUN pack 4.8 oz +
Oscar Mayer Bolgona 12+
Oscar Mayer Completes 11.4 oz +
Oscar Mayer Lunchables with Fruit 6.7 oz +
Planters Peanuts 16 oz +
Planters Nut-rition 8.75 oz +
Velveeta Loaf 2 lb (32 oz+)
Velveeta Shells and Cheese 12 oz +

I'm sure with back to school season, we'll see sales on all of these items. Pair these sales with coupons and this promo and we'll be having a great time!

Cheesecake Recipe

 Here's one of my favorite recipes! It's really easy, the hardest part about it is letting it sit overnight in the fridge. :)

2 8 oz pkgs cream cheese
2 packages of crescent rolls
1 -1/4 cup of sugar
1 stick of butter
1 tsp of vanilla or 1 inch of vanilla bean
1 tsp or so of cinnamon

Grease a 9X13 pan Preheat oven to 350

( I use a stand mixer, but a hand mixer works great too.)

Set cream cheese out for a couple hours to soften, it mixes better that way. Leave the crescent rolls in the fridge until ready to use them so they stay cold.

1) Mix the 2 bars of cream cheese until they reach a semi fluffy consistency, and add 1 cup of  the sugar. Add vanilla

2) Unroll 1 package of crescent rolls, it doesn't have to be perfect, it should cover most of the 9X13 pan

3) Spread the cream cheese mixture over the crescent roll layer

4) Make another layer of crescent rolls on top

5) Melt butter I melt it for about 45 seconds to a minute in the microwave pour it over the top layer of the crescent rolls

6) Take the other 1/4 cup of sugar and 1 tsp or so of cinnamon and combine them. Sprinkle it over the cheesecake

7) Bake it in the oven for 30-35 minutes

8) Now the hard part, let it cool to room temperature and sit overnight in the fridge. :)