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Dollars days at Scholastic!

This is for all my homeschooling friends.  Or moms like me who do a lot of teaching of our children.

Scholastic books is having their “Dollar days” sale online right now!  Lots of books to choose from.  Here is the link:

http://shop.scholastic.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/SearchEndecaCmd?Featured%20Shops=Dollar+Days&APP_ID=TS&Ne=764&homeURL=custom&viewParam=CategoryDisplay&N=4294963474&goToView=CategoryDisplayView&CurrFilter=Featured+Shops&catalogId=10002&storeId=10001&langId=-1&Ntk=Product_Shop_Rank&Ntt=50657&esp=tshome/0210/espot1/dollardays

This sale is technically only open to teachers, administators, and homechool “teachers”.  I feel that any mom who takes the time to help her child learn skills falls into that third category.  Enjoy!

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I know that it may be hard to believe, but many of the hints I pass on to you here, are yours for the taking, if you just know where to look.  I’m providing you with a list of my favorite sites, so that you don’t miss out on any deals.  Often there are great deals, but since they aren’t something that interests me, I don’t pass them on.  I mean, someone is probably DIEING for a mx400 laser mouse at a great price, but I’m not, so you won’t see deals like that posted here.

So without further ado, here are my favorite sites.

http://www.southernsavers.com – This is the one that I use for all my grocery shopping/coupon matching.  If you grocery shop, (and really who doesn’t grocery shop?), you should use this site!  Jenny (the site author) creates customizable lists for just about every store out there, matches up coupons with the items that are on sale, and even posts links for printing the online coupons right with the items.  I just print out my grocery list, fold my coupons up into it, and I’m ready to go!  She even has lists for Target and the major drug stores like CVS and Walgreens.

http://www.slickdeals.net – This site is a smorgasbord of various savings.  These are posted by users, so it is always good to research the deal before you run out to a store.  Still some of my favorite “non-grocery” deals have come from this site.  Many of the deals are through online vendors, or are YMMV (your mileage may vary – an online term that warns you may or may not be able to get the same deal).  That being said, Chris and I have snatched up some SWEET deals using this site for toys to stash for Christmas/birthdays,  tech (items for the computer), and media (DVDs, music, etc).

http://www.woot.com http://www.kids.woot.com – Oooh, the joy of the woot!  This site is kind of strange, but very addictive.  Woot sells only one item on their website a day.  Sometimes the item to be sold sells out before you can even tell if it is a good deal (a sure sign it is, in fact, a good deal), and sometimes the items will sell all day until they start the next day’s items.  They post the “new” item for the day at 1AM EST.  In addition to the basic woot.com, they recently launched kids.woot.com which has one KIDS focused item every day.  On both sites you are allowed to purchase up to three of that item. I have found several good deals on both websites.  There shipping price is rather unique.  $5 will ship up to three of whatever the item is that day.  Buy a flat screen TV?  The cost to ship is $5.  Buy THREE flat screen TVs in the same order? Still pay just $5 to get them all delivered to your house.

http://www.couponmom.com – This site’s author does something similar to what you get on southernsavers.com’s website, but not quite as well.  She does not track pricing trends, but she will tell you what percentage of discount a sale price is.  She also has a very good coupon search engine for printed (i.e. from the newspaper inserts) coupons if you need to see if there is a coupon for an item you need that is not on sale.

These are the sites I love to check on most every day.  Do you have a site you love to go to for the best deals?  If so, please share!

This is a new way that I have learned to get free (yes, I said free) groceries.  A lot of the pharmacies and grocery stores with pharmacies have started putting coupons in their ads that give you a gift card for their store if you bring in a new or transferred prescription.  I was able to make use of one of those coupons today.

Chris, unfortunately, came down with a sinus infection.  I had him take his prescriptions to our local Food Lion Grocery Store, who had mailed me some coupons – one of which was for a $25 Food Lion card with any new or transferred prescription.  Chris got the prescription filled, and that gave me $25 to play with at Food Lion.  I did a search on my favorite savings website southernsavers.com for the deals there this week, and then I went shopping!  I put $61.39 worth of items in my cart, and headed to check out!  First I take out the $14.26 I saved by purchasing items that were on sale. That brought my total to $47.13. With the prescription coupon, I also got a coupon for $10 off of a $25 or more purchase, so after that was subtracted, and I used the gift card, my total was just $12.13!

Here are a couple of DO’s and DON’Ts that I have found helpful for maximizing your savings.

DO call the pharmacy to make sure they take your insurance plan.  If you are going to a major chain the likelihood that they don’t take your insurance is low, but why chance wasting your savings on higher prescription prices if you don’t have to do so.

DON’T feel like you have to use the card the moment you receive it.  It is a gift card.  It will hold until you get your “patient” well again.  You’ll make much better use of it if you plan ahead.

DO ask about any guidelines or limitations about using your credit.  Some stores “store” their credit on your loyalty card, so no hard copy is needed.  Some are just the opposite, and if you lose the gift card (or receipt slip) then your “free food” is gone!  Some cards have expiration dates, and others can’t be used with other special offers (like the $10 off coupon I used above).  Asking ahead of time will head off unexpected disappointments.

DON’T go shopping without a list.  Yes, the food will still be free, but if you make a list, you will get SO much more!

DO check to make sure you have already signed up for any needed customer loyalty programs before heading to check out.  Many chains (like Food Lion for example) require you to be signed up for their program to get the advertised savings.  Take care of it before you start shopping, so you don’t annoy other customers while they wait for you to sign up in line.

Now I will say that some people may not feel comfortable using these deals.  If you are on multiple medications, or take a regular medication every month, you may want to keep all your prescriptions at one pharmacy.  This allows the pharmacist to warn you about possible drug interactions, or unpleasant side affects.  But if, like me, you only wind up heading to the doctor when you need the rare antibiotic, or prescription sinus meds, this is a GREAT way to get free groceries.  If you have to be sick, at least you an get something positive out of the experience. 🙂

Okay.  Just a quick post to let you know about a BOGO dozen eggs coupon that will be available on Friday.  America’s Egg Farmers have a fan page on facebook.  They are giving this BOGO dozen egg coupon to the first 30,000 fans who request it on their Fan Page on Friday, February 5th.

Here is the link to get to their facebook page, and become a fan:   http://www.facebook.com/IncredibleEdibleEgg

Enjoy!

My Potato Soup Recipe

This is my own original recipe, so please be gentle in your criticism. 😉 It is NOT lowfat, but it is YUMMY!  Total comfort food.  Enjoy!

Cheese Sausage Potato Soup

  • 1/2 lb. Sweet Italian Turkey Sausage, casings removed
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • 3 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 4 cups diced potatoes (peeled or not, your preference)
  • 6 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar/monterey jack cheese blend
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

In a large saucepan, cook italian sausage, onions, and celery until sausage is no longer pink, and celery and onions are tender.  Drain and rinse, then place sausage & veggies in large stock pot.  Add chicken stock, and diced potatoes. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes, or until potatoes are fork tender.

While potatoes are cooking, melt the butter in the saucepan used to cook the sausage.  Use your spoon to “scratch” up the yummy browned bits left on the bottom of the pan into the butter.  Once butter has melted, whisk in the flour until combined. (This will produce a thin paste.)  Slowly whisk in the milk, then cook over a low heat, stirring constantly, until the sauce just comes to a boil.  It will thicken quite a bit during that process.  Remove from heat, and add the shredded cheese.  Stir until cheese is completely melted into the sauce.  Add several “ladlefuls” of the liquid from the potatoes to thin out the sauce a little.  Then pour it into the potatoes.  Mix well.  Add 1/2 teaspoon of pepper (or to taste).

Okay, I bought these last week when they were on sale at publix.  Wow!  So yummy, and only 110 calories with 5 grams of fiber per serving.  I’ve tried these with sandwich ingredients like tuna salad, and with breakfast ingredients like the Egg Mug recipe I have mentioned on facebook.  I don’t know what more to say, except try them!

Here is the link for egg mug recipes (in case your are curious).  http://www.hungry-girl.com/week/weeklydetails.php?isid=1784

I’m in the process of typing my totally awesome potato soup recipe into my blog.  I’ll try to post it today or tomorrow, so be on the look out!

Okay, this is an awesome deal, so I just had to share.  Big Idea is giving away DVDs on their website.  Follow this link to grab one for yourself.

https://bigidea.com/other/free_dvd.aspx

If you happen to live in the states of MN or TN you will have to also pay sales tax, but otherwise, $2.99 get’s you a veggie tales DVD!  I just put in an order for Are You My Neighbor? I love Veggie Tales, and have been collecting for years.  The silly songs are hilarious.  If you love them as much as I do, then you really should check this out.  There are three sing along silly song DVDs included in the list.  And the morals taught in the tales can’t be beat.

This deal has me feeling the urge to sing along with I Love My Lips, so I will bid you ado.  Peace Out!