Friday, August 29, 2008

Ok here's a good deal.

I feel like a good deal involves me looking feverishly for my coupons, so I had to post this one. Target has their easy mac cups on sale for .70 each. I'm not sure if this is a clearance price, or just a sale price. The post I read didn't specify. Either way, I think the regular price of these at Wal-Mart is .77. There was a $1/2 Easy Mac coupons in last Sunday's paper, as well as on That makes the cups .20-.27 each. This is enough for my 2 girls to share for lunch. If you have any of the All You coupons left, this would be a great way to redeem them. Who really needs all that Kool-Aid?? I would much rather have something we will eat!

*If your grocery store does double coupons up to a dollar, this would be an even sweeter deal. Considering the original price, of course.

Just to let you all know, I did try this today and it worked like a charm. The cups at my Wal-Mart were .75 each. I am now the proud owner of 20 easy mac cups! And 1 Crystal Light, 1 package of natural hot dogs, a family size box of wheat thins, and 1 box of low fat fudge bars. I found you could print the easy mac coupons on a couple of websites besides, so I was able to print 8 total and I had 2 from my own newspaper inserts (8/24 rp, in case you were wondering). The fudge bars weren't free but they were reduced to $1. Much cheaper than skinny cow. I hope they taste as good. I spent a total of $8.05. Not too bad for 3 full sacks of edible items!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Pardon the pause....

Sorry I haven't been posting much this week. Blame it on Stephenie Meyer. She is the author of the "Twilight" saga. I am completely engrossed in book 3 of 4 right now. It doesn't take me long to read her books so hopefully after book 4 I will be able to focus on the blog again! If I see or hear of any a-mazing deals, I will be sure to post them. It seems they have been few and far between recently- unless you live in those really cool parts of the country with good grocery stores. Ah, a girl can dream....

Monday, August 25, 2008

Menu Plan Monday- with recipes!

If you notice a couple of repeats this week it's because I changed some things around last week. Wednesday we went out to dinner. My BIL works at an Italian restaurant so we get his employee discount ever now and then. Thursday I had the raging headache I told you all about so we ate out of the freezer, and Saturday my dad treated us to dinner. Here's the plan for this week.

Monday- Boneless Pork Ribs, Twice Baked Potatoes, Roasted Veggies

Recipe from COOKS.COM

3-4 lbs. country style ribs (boneless)
1 lg. bottle BBQ sauce
1 thinly sliced onion
Brown sugar
Garlic powder

Place ribs in 9 x 13 inch pan. Sprinkle with garlic. Bake at 400 degrees for 45-60 minutes. Remove from oven. Lower temperature to 250 degrees. Drain fat from meat. Sprinkle with a little more garlic and brown sugar to taste. Pour BBQ sauce on top with thinly sliced onion. Bake 3 more hours at 250 degrees. Don't over cook.

Chicken Fajitas, Mexi Rice, Black Beans
Fajita Marinade
1/3 c. fresh lime juice
1/3 c. soy sauce
1/3 c. vegetable oil

I use whole chicken breasts to grill and then I slice it into fajita strips. You can add your onions and peppers to this marinade as well, just make sure you cook them completely. If you need more marinade than this just do equal parts of all three ingredients.

Wednesday- Hot Dogs, Brats, Baked Beans, Corn

Thursday- Jambalaya

Friday- Leftovers

Saturday- Homemade Pizza, Salad

Sunday- Roast, Potatoes, Carrots
I cook my roast in the crockpot. If you would like the the recipe it's on as "the easiest pot roast ever". I am making a larger roast than we will eat and using the leftover meat and potatoes to make stew on the next Tuesday.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

CVS 8/24-8/31

The deals are not plentiful this week. I may stop by tomorrow when I'm out and about. Here are the best deals I see.

5 ecb wyb Stayfree, Carefree, or OB for 2/$9 (Limit 1)
BOGO up to 6.49 6/29 rp

1.49 ecb wyb Kotex Lightdays for 1.49 (Limit 1)

.75 off 7/20 SS, $1 off any in ALL YOU, $1 off 7/31 SS, $1 off Printable

$3.00 ECB wyb Playtex Gentle glide 18 ct or Sport 16 ct @ $4.99 Limit 1

$1.00 off Playtex Gentle Glide Plastic Applicator Tampons, any 18 ct. or more V 6/22/08 exp 9/21/08
$1.00 off Playtex Sport Plastic Applicator Tampons, any 16 ct- V 6/22/08 exp 9/21/08

There is also a pack of Playtex Sport 36 ct tampons w/ a free intuition razor on sale for $5.99. No eb but if you need a razor this would be better to use your coupons on.

If there are any other deals I missed please include them in the comments section.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Freebie Friday

I apologize that I can't copy links on here. Just copy and paste the address to your tool bar.

Wal-Mart (more than one freebie)

$5/20 Walgreens plus other coupons, good today and tomorrow only.

Free Cascade Rinse Agent (enter to win a dishwasher too!)

Bounce Awakenings Dryer Sheets

10 free tokens to Chuck E. Cheese. This is a printable reward calendar. Looks really cute! Chuck E Cheese had printable valentines last year with free tokens on them so you may want to save this site!

If you have other freebies, or really good coupons, feel free to post them in the comments page! Happy Friday!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

New template....

I changed my blog template! I think this one is easier to navigate and more user friendly. Please take the poll on the right and tell me what you think!

Why I love my freezer...

I am constantly talking about how much I enjoy my meal plan. I have only been meal planning for a few months so the excitement of it is still new to me (and my life lacks some serious excitement!). So, what happens when you don't feel like eating what is on the meal plan? Or, in the case of this evening, you get a terrible headache and cooking is the last thing you want to do. Fast food is not really an option around here (besides being expensive, it just isn't good when you are used to having homemade food every night). So, I went to the freezer. The last time we had BBQ sandwiches I took the left over meat and put them into individual portions and froze them. I still had some buns in the fridge so after a few minutes in the microwave, we had BBQ sandwiches. Remember the All You Kraft coupons? Well, I bought mac and cheese for just such occasions as tonight. (Hubby makes the best boxed mac and cheese. Seriously, it's his claim to kitchen fame.) I sliced up a cumcumber and dinner was served. No money on fast food and dinner was ready quicker than it would have taken me to drive to Mickey D's. Not to mention healthier. I didn't go by the menu plan but with a little stockpiling it all worked out!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Menu Plan Monday- with recipes!

Since I got a good response to including my recipes with our meal plan for last week, I decided to try it again this week. I actually made a Google calendar for the next 3 weeks. It was much easier than I would have thought. I must have been creative today! I posted a link on the left. I will continue to post the recipes for the week on Mondays, except for the obvious things like Spaghetti or Tacos. Please click on the poll at the left and let us know how you do your menu plan.

Monday- Soft Tacos, Mexican Rice, Re-fried Beans

Tuesday- Spaghetti Pie, Salad, Garlic Bread
Spaghetti Pie
6 oz. spaghetti
2 tbsp butter
1/3 c. parmesan
1 egg
1 pd. ground beef
1 can or jar of spaghetti sauce
1 c. cottage or ricotta cheese
1/2 c shredded mozzarella

Directions: Brown the ground beef, drain, and add spaghetti sauce. While the ground beef is browning, cook the spaghetti according to package directions and drain. Add butter, parmesan, and egg to the hot spaghetti. Place the spaghetti mixtur in the bottow of a greased pie plate. Spread the ricotta over the spaghetti. SPread the meat saude over the ricotta. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes or until heated through. Spread the mozzarella over the pie and bake until melted. Let stand 5 minutes, cut into wedges, and serve.

Wednesday- Crockpot Lemon Garlic Chicken, Rice, Green Beans, Rolls
This is a family favorite. I could make this once a week and even the kids wouldn't complain.
Lemon Garlic Chicken

1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp season salt
1/4 tsp pepper
4 chicken boneless skinless chicken breast
1/4 c water
3 Tbsp lemon juice
2 garlic cloves minced
1 tsp chicken bouillon

Combine oregano, salt, pepper and rub into chicken. Place water, lemon, garlic and bouillon in crockpot. Place chicken on top and cook 4-5 hours on high.

Thursday- Homemade Pizza, Salad

I think this week I may try BBQ chicken pizza with colby jack cheese. Instead of pizza sauce I will use BBQ sauce.

Friday- Leftovers
I know I had that rant about how we don't eat leftovers, blah, blah, blah, but this past Friday night we had a smorgasboard of leftovers and it was kind of fun. Like a mini buffet. Plus it got my refrigerator cleaned out. Too reduce waste, I think we will start doing this once a week. Hubby gets home so late on Friday and Saturday nights that it's hard to plan dinner.

Saturday- Sesame Chicken with Broccoli
Use your free dressing, thanks to ALL YOU, to make this dish. It is SOOO good and easy!

Speedy Chicken Stir-Fry
8 oz. angel hair pasta (capellini), uncooked
2 cups small broccoli florets
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
1/2 cup KRAFT Asian Toasted Sesame Dressing
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1/4 tsp. each: ground ginger, garlic powder, crushed red pepper
1/3 cup chopped PLANTERS Dry Roasted Peanuts

COOK pasta as directed on package, adding broccoli to the boiling water for the last 3 min. of the pasta cooking time.

MEANWHILE, spray large nonstick skillet with cooking spray; heat on medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 6 to 8 min. or until cooked through, stirring occasionally. Stir in dressing, soy sauce, ginger, garlic and crushed red pepper; cook 1 min., stirring occasionally.

DRAIN pasta mixture; place in large bowl. Add chicken mixture; mix lightly. Spoon evenly into four serving bowls; sprinkle with the peanuts.

Sunday- Grilled Pork Steaks, Twice Baked Potatoes, Roasted Veggies, Rolls

Feel free to copy and paste any recipes your family might enjoy. If you put anything on your own blog, please post a link back to mine. Thanks and enjoy!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

CVS Deals 8/17-8/23

Here is how I will do the deals this week. Normally I probably wouldn't buy much of this stuff but I do need most of it. We have no back up body wash and I am out of mascara, bleach, and Wet Jet pads. I have to take baby wipes, clorox wipes, and bandaids for "school supplies" next week so I am taking advantage of my CVS gift card that I got for a transferred prescription. I am starting with $0 ecb this week.

Transaction 1
Schick Quatro 7.99
Playskool Baby Wipes 2.50
- 2/10 CVS q
- 4 Schick
- 1 Playskool
Total oop 3.50
get 5 eb

Transaction 2
Bandaid/ Neosporin deal 10.00
I don't know prices on the things I need so hopefully I won't have to spend much more than $10.
- 2/10
- 1 Neosporin
- 5 ecb
total oop 2.00
get 5 ecb

Transaction 3
Revlon mascara 7.99
Maybelline mascara 4.99
- 2/10
- 1 Revlon
- 1 Maybelline
- 5 ecb
total oop 4.00
get 5, 2 ecb

Transaction 4
Maybelline 4.99
Bleach 1.50
Suave 3/$5
- 2/10
- 1 Maybelline
- 2 Suave
- 5 ecb
total oop 1.50
get 2 ecb

Transaction 5
Wet Jet Pads $?
Clorox wipes $? (I think these are in a 2 pack with ecb on the label.)
- 2/10
- 2 ecb
- 2 ecb
total oop ? (I will update tomorrow.)

Before my final transaction I will spend 11.00 oop and get back 19 ecb plus get the stuff I need! I so heart CVS!

*If you want coupon matchups check out 's coupon database. They have an AWESOME search engine for any and all coupons. You just type in the item you are looking for a coupon for and it will tell you when and where to find it. It is free to join and they have great forums as well.

Farmers Market

Peyton and I hit our local farmers market yesterday. I have to say I enjoy the idea of walking around and buying home grown fruits and veggies but people are definitely proud of their work. And, no, nothing was organic. I got to thinking as I was wondering around in the warm, breezy morning, aren't the fruits and veggies at the grocery store home grown SOMEWHERE? There aren't any cucumber molds that I don't know about is there? I did pick up a few things; blueberries, squash, zucchini, fresh corn, and cucumbers. I spent around $15 and I can chop up the squash and zucchini for side dishes. However, I think I will plant my own garden next spring and enjoy the morning in my PJ's.

* OMG! We had some of the fresh corn tonight with our BBQ sandwiches and baked beans. It was the most amazing corn I have ever eaten. It was so sweet and crisp. My step-dad joined us for dinner and he asked me what I put on the corn to make it so sweet. Uh, just butter, salt and pepper. Peyton ate an entire gigantic ear! I paid about .62 an ear but it is SOOO worth it! I can't wait to try the squash and zucchini!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Free Chick-Fil-A- September 1st

I L-O-V-E Chick-Fil-A. Unfortunately, it is really expensive fast food, and hubby doesn't like it. (I think he may be a communist because he doesn't like cobbler either.) With our food budget being sliced almost in half, there is no going out this month. FREE Chick-Fil-a! Bonus: You don't have to dress like a cow!
Free three-count order of Chick-n-Strips while supplies last, eligible participants should visit participating Chick-fil-A locations from 10:30 AM until close on Sept. 1, 2008 wearing at least one visible article of clothing that contains any football team logo or collegiate logo and mention this Promotion.

ELIGIBILITY: Offer available only to legal U.S. residents of AL, AR AZ, CA, CO, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, LA, MA, MD, MO, MS, NC, NH, NJ, NM, OH, OK, PA, SC, TN, TX, UT, VA, WI, WV, and WY. Limit one per person.
Go Sooners!

(From Chick-Fil-A's website)

Friday, August 15, 2008

Freebie Friday

If you haven't bought the ALL YOU magazine yet, go and buy it! Most stores have their KoolAid packets for around .10 each. In the All You magazine there are coupons for FREE Wheat Thins, dressing, hot dogs, crystal light, and kraft singles, when you buy 3 kraft products. KoolAid is made by Kraft so you can get all that stuff for 1.50, plus the price of the magazine (1.77 here)! WooHoo! My kids don't drink KoolAid but I read on another post that you can use the lemonade flavor to disinfect your dishwasher. I guess that isn't technically FREE but it's pretty close. The magazine is loaded with other great coupons as well, and some great recipes.

Free Purina One dog (or cat, I think) food. Since we got our puppy on Mother's Day I have bought 1 bag of dog food. Everything else I have gotten for free by signing up for coupons! Call this number Call 1-866-894-BARK (2275). It takes about 2-3 minutes...FULLY automated

Do a survey for $74 in P&G coupons.
This is pretty painless but takes a few minutes.

FREE IAMS Dog or Cat Food coupon
If you do any coupon trading this would be a good one to have if you don't have pets.

With our drastically reduced grocery budget this month, these coupons will help out
a lot!

I'm not sure why but blogger is not letting me post links to any other sites unless I put it on the right side of the page. Until I figure this out, you can cut and paste the link to your toolbar. If anyone knows how to fix this problem please let me know! I am not very techie!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Use it up!

In my quest to reduce our grocery budget, I have realized how much I waste. Since I have started making a weekly meal plan we never eat leftovers. Seriously, never. Nope, not even for lunch. I wish we did. I grew up in a house where we lived on leftovers. I learned to cook big. I have been trying to scale back or at least incorporate leftovers into another meal during the week.

Yesterday I bought a 5-lb. bag of potatoes. I don't think I have ever finished using a bag of potatoes, except at Thanksgiving or Christmas. I read a post on another blog (I'm sorry I don't remember which one!) about freezing twice baked potatoes. I love twice baked potatoes, but they are kind of a pain to make. Well, yesterday I took the bigger potatoes out of the bag and made once baked potatoes. And then I froze them, individually. They will be twice baked once they are baked again. Hubby asked me how to warm them up. I suddenly realized I don't know how to warm them up. I guess I will thaw them in the microwave and them bake them like normal. If any of you freeze twice bakes please tell me the best way to warm them.

EDITED TO ADD: I researched and you can do all the steps except baking a second time if you want to freeze them. When you want to thaw them you just put them in the microwave for 10 min. and then a 350 oven for 15-20 min. Don't forget the cheese on top! Here's the recipe I use from



* 4 large baking potatoes
* 8 slices bacon
* 1 cup sour cream
* 1/2 cup milk
* 4 tablespoons butter
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 teaspoon pepper
* 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
* 8 green onions, sliced, divided


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2. Bake potatoes in preheated oven for 1 hour.
3. Meanwhile, place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, crumble and set aside.
4. When potatoes are done allow them to cool for 10 minutes. Slice potatoes in half lengthwise and scoop the flesh into a large bowl; save skins. To the potato flesh add sour cream, milk, butter, salt, pepper, 1/2 cup cheese and 1/2 the green onions. Mix with a hand mixer until well blended and creamy. Spoon the mixture into the potato skins. Top each with remaining cheese, green onions and bacon.
5. Bake for another 15 minutes.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

I am only including dinners this week for Menu Plan Monday. Our breakfasts and lunches are usually grab and go and don't change much from week to week, so I will spare you the boring details. I will, however, include recipes, for the non- obvious items, like Spaghetti. Feel free to copy and paste any you like to your own word document.

Monday- Chicken and Broccoli Casserole, Salad, Garlic Bread
Broccoli and Chicken Casserole
4 oz. dried med. egg noodles
2 c. chopped cooked chicken
1 10 oz package chopped broccoli, thawed
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/2 c. milk
1/2 c. Swiss cheese, shredded
1 tsp dried basil
1/8 tsp. pepper

1. Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain well.
2. In a 2-qt. casserole stir together noodles, chicken, and broccoli.
3. In a medium mixing bowl stir together soup, milk, cheese, basil, and pepper. Stir into noodle mixture.
4. Bake, covered, in a 350 oven for 40-45 min. or until heated through. Sprinkle with paprika.

This recipe also freezes well, so make a double batch!

Tuesday- Crockpot Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans, Rolls
Crockpot Chicken
3-4 frozen chicken breasts
No salt chicken seasoning, like Mrs. Dash
1 tsp. soy sauce
1 can Campbell's Turkey gravy, or the like

Sprikle seasonings over chicken breasts. Add soy sauce and gravy.
Cook in crockpot for 4 hours on high, or 7-8 hours on low.

Wednesday- Chicken Enchiladas, mexican rice, black beans
Recipe: (from Lisa, gypsygirl, on Here Comes The Stork)
Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas
4 chicken breasts, cooked and cut into pieces
16oz sour cream
16oz shredded cheese, divided in half
1 can cream of chicken soup
10" flour tortillas

Warm soup and sour cream on stove. Keep a little bit aside to top enchiladas before baking. Add chicken to mixture, add 1/2 cheese to mix. Spoon into flour tortillas and roll up into enchiladas, place in baking dish. Cover with rest of sauce and cheese. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.

Thursday- Spaghetti, Salad, Garlic Bread

Friday- Sandwiches (hubby works late)

Saturday- BBQ Pork Sandwiches, Baked Beans, Corn on the Cob
BBQ Pork Sandwiches
4 lb. Pork Roast, or tenderloin
1 can Beef broth
1 small bottle of BBQ sauce. I use Sweet Baby Ray's.

Put roast in crockpot and cover with beef broth. Cook on low for 7-8 hours.
Reove roast and trasfer to a 11x13 casserole dish. With two forks, shred the meat. Cover with BBQ sauce and cook for 30 minutes in a 350 oven. Serve on hamburger buns.

Sunday- grilled burgers, leftover baked beans, and salad

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Menu Planning

Since tomorrow is "Menu Plan Monday" I thought I would post a link to the printable menu planner I use, every week. I had a hard time finding a plan that worked for me so I hope this helps a few of you.

Of course when I plan my menu for the week, I always check to see what I have on hand. For example, this week I have 2 packages of ground beef, but only 1 chicken breast, which is all cooked, and in my freezer. I know I only need 1 cooked chicken breast for things like pizza or a casserole. I also have a block of swiss cheese in the freezer and egg noodles in the pantry. So, one night I will make chicken and broccoli casserole. All I have to buy for dinner that night is a package of frozen broccoli. I also have an extra lasagna and chicken enchilada casserole in the freezer that I made the last time I made those 2 dishes. Suddenly, my reduced grocery budget for the week doesn't seem so daunting.

Check under 'Sites I Love' for the link to the 'Printable Menu Planner'.

Friday, August 8, 2008

I'm baaaack.....

I know I said I would be checking in but we had a terrible internet connection while we were gone. And we were super busy. And I actually slept past 9am. WooHoo! We had such a great time. We did go out to eat one time but it was after we had to leave the theme park b/c of rain. Every ride was shut down, not to mention it was cold and wet. So we saved the ticket money, and went to lunch and to ride go-carts and play mini-golf.

My vacation tips for anyone planning a frugal vacation
1. Go somewhere close enough to drive in one day. Duh.

2. Stay somewhere with a full kitchen. I know, it costs more. But not that much more. And trust me, it is worth having enough space for everyone to spread out and you can COOK!
3. Prepare your meal plan before you leave home. Prepare and freeze meals, like lasagna. You can pack it in an ice chest. If you have a good ice chest, it will still be frozen, even 8 hours later. Make sure you plan breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. If you don't bring enough food you may as well not bring any at all.
4. If you must eat out, go get ice cream! This saved us every night. Most tourists towns have a mom and pop ice cream shop. The nostalgia of an old time soda fountain is not lost on children. We went to a different one each night and only spent around $10 each time. MUCH cheaper than feeding a family of four, 3 meals a day.
5. Look and ASK for coupons. I incorporated our back to school shopping into this trip since the town had an outlet mall. We had gotten a travel guide at the gas station, free. Inside there was a coupon for a free coupon book, regularly $5, to the outlet mall. When I got Peyton's clothes, I asked the cashier if they had any coupons in the book. They didn't. So I asked if she had any coupons laying around. She said "Well, I have a 15% off. Would that be okay?" OKAY? That would be so awesome!! Just by asking, I saved over $20. With the coupon book I saved $10 off $50 when I bought Madison's clothes, 10% off hubby's clothes. Just by paying attention to the free travel guide I saved almost $50 on stuff I was going to buy anyway.
Then when we went to play mini-golf, in small type at the bottom of the score card was a coupon for free ice cream to the winner of the round. Savings: $4.75!

That's all the tips I have for now. I hope it helps some of you. I know it is late in the season for summer vacations but these are good tips for any season of travel. What tips do you have for a frugal vacation?

Monday, August 4, 2008

Menu Plan Monday- Vacation Edition

We are living for vacation tomorrow! Hooray! Hubby won the trip from work so that means we got a free-ish vacation. The condo we are staying in has a full kitchen so I am cooking as if we were at home, to save money. Second, there is a theme park nearby that has a 2-day special. If you go the first day after 3pm, you get the second day free. And kids under 4 are free. Hopefully we will create some good family memories and not break the bank. I cooked like a crazy woman today and tried to prepare as much here as possible, so I don't have to take a lot with me. And then I filled the freezer. Wheeee! I think I may start cooking meals and freezing them once a month. I feel so accomplished! I'm starting with Tuesday b/c it's after midnight on Monday.

Breakfast- cereal
Lunch- Picnic lunch (we're hoping we can find a nice rest stop so the kids can run around)
Dinner- Lasagna, salad, garlic bread

Breakfast- poptarts (CVS freebie)
Lunch- Turkey sandwiches and Spaghetti O's
Dinner- Lemon Garlic Chicken, rice, green beans, garlic bread

Breakfast- granola bars
Lunch- Tuna salad sandwiches, lunchables for the girls
Dinner- Chicken enchiladas, rice, black beans, corn

Breakfast- yogurt
Lunch- (on the road)
Dinner- Homemade pizza, salad

Lots of snacks for vacation! I would love to not spend ANYTHING on food.
moo tubes, granola bars, bagels,
nutty bars, homemade cookies, strawberrys,
grapes, carrot sticks, mini donuts,
mandarin oranges, cucumbers,
chips, krispy treats,
popsicles, & crackers

I will try to check in while we're gone. Have a good week!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

FREE Professional Haircare

One thing that I really have a love/hate relationship is the price of hair care. I love to go to the salon for a cut and color, and grown up conversation. Then I have to pay.......EEK! Dave Ramsey would be so ashamed. To make matters worse, they want me to come back in 6 weeks. Well my friends, I may have discovered the greatest thing since hair color in a box, which I can NOT do. Hubby and I and the girls were at the mall today (I went to pick up a book that I had ordered with the Borders $5 off code) when I walked past Regis and noticed a sign. It said something about hair models, blah blah, inquire inside. The nice lady told me that they use 'hair models' to teach new techniques to their staff. This time they are doing foiling highlights, any color you choose, free of charge. Since I was the first to sign up, the instructor will be doing my hair. I don't know how often they do this but I'm hoping to get on some sort of list so they can call me when they need a model. I will let you all know how it turns out and if I get any more info the day of the services. Wish me luck and call your local salon!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Popsicles for breakfast?

In my quest to be the coolest Mom ever I let the girls help me make these today. Actually, I was reading FishMama's blog and felt guilty for being so grumpy the past few days. My girls LOVE to help me cook. I think it's because I'm usually OCD when it comes to cooking. Anyway, we went to Target, got the ingredients and made the pops. Peyton wants a pudding pop at least 2 or 3 times a day. I was watching Martha Stewart this morning and she made these popsicles. With the ingredients, I would let Peyton have these for breakfast or snack time. They are in the freezer now. Hopefully they turn out.

1 1/2 c. organic yogurt (I used vanilla, Martha used plain)
3 tbsp sugar
2-3 ripe bananas
1 c. fresh blueberries
1/2 lemon's juice

Puree the peeled bananas in food processor. Add yogurt, sugar, lemon juice. Puree again. Add blueberries and quickly puree. (You want the blueberries to stay a bit in tact, like in muffins.) Pour mixture into popsicle molds and freeze for 8 hours.

They are basically just frozen smoothies. My kids don't like bananas so I used some frozen strawberries and peaches. We buy the gigantic bag of Dole frozen diced fruit at Sam's. It doesn't have any sugar added so it's great for smoothies and such.

Fun with Friends-on the cheap!

Whenever we are feeling the pinch of our budget, I sometimes feel like "Whoa is me, I get to have no fun". Then I have a game night. I've only done this a couple of times but it really is a lot of fun. There are a few of us that get together at one house (we try to alternate) and eat dinner and play games. This would be perfect for couples but we usually just have ladies. It's great to sit around with friends and relax and chat. It's also great because we don't have to hire a sitter (the kids come and play together or stay home with Daddy), we don't have an expensive food tab (the host cooks dinner, something cheap and easy), and it is lots of fun!
I read over at about a cooking club. I think this is a great idea! Basically, a group a friends get together once a month and trade frozen dishes. You would make enough dishes for everyone to take one (i.e. 8 friends, 8 dishes). This would really fun if you incorporated themes, like Mexican food in May, pie in November, cookies in December, etc. I will definitely be working on my friends to start a cooking club.
What ways do you have "grown-up" fun on the cheap? We are always talking about how to entertain our kids for less but us parents need some fun too! Post your comments so we can all learn from your ideas!