The Fall season will bring us a new baby

The Spring season will bring us a new baby on or near April 19th. So, I have decided to start stocking up my pantry and freezer. I have been lucky in the last few weeks to stock up majorly on sugar, tuna and .99 cent Jif peanut butter (Yay, it’s our family’s favorite!). I have been watching the grocery ads and have been stopping by the stores at least once a day to pick up my limit of loss leaders. (My dh stops on his way to work)

I am going back to work for the 6 weeks or so until I have the baby, mostly to pay off some bills, save a little and put us in better shape for my staying home again once the baby is born.

I have also been stockpiling free ride gift certificates so I can cut my Christmas bill down to nearly nothing like I did last year.

Saving your change

OK Ladies, this saving your change thing isn’t working for me.

Last week, I spent $6.75 on gas (.25 in change bucket), $1.00 on donuts, .50 on Snickers (.50 in change) and .80 on a muffin (.20 in change). And some weeks I spend a lot less, which means less change. I’m wondering if for me, instead of saving change, which will take forever to accumulate to anything, I am better off spending it which might save me a little more over the week.

Does this make sense?

Well, I’m finally back home

Hey all,

Well, I’m finally back home and it is way too hot still….my idea of a luxurious celebration would be a motel room (any motel room!) mega air conditioning and cable! But beyond my own fantasies, here are some other thoughts….something that results with a nice memento–I’ve never done it but I am fascinated by those coffee shops/pottery places where you decorate your own plate/mug etc and they fire it for you. Spend a day/night at a street festival–fun/scary houses, the silly games are all great for a giggle.

And don’t forget pictures–my favorites are the strip ones that come from the booths. We once went to an outdoor concert and I packed a gourmet picnic (which has never happened since because dh just wondered where the hotdogs were….) We love flea markets and will make a special trip for one. I love the local produce that you can find at flea markets–honey, sorghum syrup, watermelon! We do all night movie festivals also. Star wars and the Planet of the Apes series are forever engrained in my mind.

Good luck on deciding what to do!

Lis in AL.

This place is a huge budget buster for me

This place is a huge budget buster for me, so I only get there once a year and I only take cash in with me! I’d love to have almost everything in there!

For those of you who like to have taper candles on hand, they have a box of them (20 I think) for about $5. These candles, when burned, make a bit of a lip so that wax doesn’t drip out on your table.

I love having these on hand for when the power goes out. This box should last for a good long time as well. The last time we were there, we ended up getting three 6 ft x 4 ft oriental style rugs ($40 each) and a same size rug with roadways and buildings on it for daughter’s room ($30). 2 of the orientals are in the basement, as floor covering for the kid’s play area.

I had the other rug in the living room, but we have moved it out for awhile until the kids are less messy. Cracker crumbs get crushed right through this thing and it ends up being extremely messy under there.

Other than that, these are wonderful rugs for the price and they look very nice. Ooooh, I want to go back now!!!!

Creative Celebration Ideas (x-post)

Help! Tomorrow is my last day at a job I hate, and then I’m off to school to follow my dreams at Notre Dame, and I want to CELEBRATE.

In the past, we’ve always celebrated things like this with a nice dinner out, but I don’t want to do that this time for a couple of reasons. First, I’m coming to realize that I am a very emotional eater, and even though this is a positive emotion, I’m trying to break myself of this pattern.

Second, now that we’re trying to be more frugal, that doesn’t seem like such a great choice. It’s not even that I would mind spending $30 on our celebration, but I want to get more out of my $30 than a meal I could cook at home for $5. We have no children, so it’s just the two of us. Anyone got any creative ideas??

The coupons I mentioned

The coupons I mentioned for getting free tokens at was much earlier this summer and expired at the end of July. But, I’m sure later in the year it might come back or you’ll find other specials that your family could use.

I saw the large pizza and free tokens coupon at the chuckie cheese site a few weeks ago and that offer was good until the end of August. I’ve seen one for june and july so I figured it automatically changed with the calendar. I don’t remember the exact area I accessed the coupon so when I get time later, I’ll try to find the exact thing to mouse click.

I know you may not be visiting good old Chuckie for awhile

I know you may not be visiting good old Chuckie for awhile, but my local ones are very watchful about making sure the hand stamps match when we leave with the ultra violet light. So I would complain via the web or a quick letter to your local place. I think management would be very interested in keeping customers, and might even throw in a good coupon to boot. I’ve done at least a thousand corporate audits or “mystery shops” in the last 15 years. I’ve seen big changes made as a result of my reports at some locations especially when it’s a failure in safety standards.

I’ve done this on my own through the years when it’s not “work” related, and gotten incentives to keep me a good customer. I think there’s even been a thread on this from the old creative budget forum with rude grocery store checkout personnel. I make chuckie visits less expensive by using internet coupons from the website – large pizza and free tokens. The coupons in the newspaper circulars aren’t really all that great. From the same newspaper I found out there were a lot companies ready to help you get a loan if you need $500 fast.

My kids’ report cards (even the kindergartner!) got at least 15 tokens and free movie rentals at Blockbuster. (the blockbuster mention was not affiliated in any way with Chuckie – just a head’s up on what other company’s offer as a reward for good grades). I got buy $10 worth of tokens, get $10 free.

The same offer showed up for 2-3 weeks so I got 5 coupons. I handed them out to internet-less friends, and used two coupons myself. Of course I didn’t let the kids splurge and use all the tokens in one sitting – this will last us 3 visits from summer to xmas vacation.

I saw that but i am too neurotic a Mom

I saw that but i am too neurotic a Mom to leave my kids there even if my 12 yo son was there with the younger ones – just too many wackos in the world- and i don’t even trust them if they stamp your hand give matching name bands etc. cause they do that when ya walk n at our Chuck e cheese but they never really ck it when ya walk out anyhow i spent a total of 50$ ( GASP ) on storage thing that i can put together and put Rubbermaid bins under so each kids will get their own bin for backpack lunches etc and they can put their shoes on the shelf

Also a sifter a few kitchen stuff dd a new lampshade and a cool nightlite they were out of my chairs – wahhhhh but they are due to get more in so we may have to head up there again in the next two weeks or so – we are going up to take the three oldest to my Mom for a few days – and its on teh way to my mom’s on 8/20 so we may pick them up then so i am still hanging on to my coupon LOL!!!

Kids and frugality

I wanted to tell you the conversation I heard yesterday between my soon to be 13 year old DD and her one of her best friends. The girls had been at a sleepover and I had picked them up at 11. Since it was in the direction of the salvage store I go to I decided to go there and take the girls along.

We were in the aisle that has air fresheners, Lysol spray, furniture polish, etc. I heard Kristen (DD’s friend) say to Mandy (my DD) “Some of these cans don’t have lids on them”. My DD responded ” No, they don’t but they’re a lot cheaper and we just save lids so we put a lid on at home”. I thought it was really cute!

The cans that don’t have lids are usually 25 to 75 cents depending on what it is. I have saved several types of caps/sprayers/lids in a basket under my kitchen sink so I usually have one to fit any can we buy. I love it when I see evidence of frugality being passed on to my kids !

A computer for free sounds like a can’t-lose deal

A computer for free sounds like a can’t-lose deal, but I would be cautious (you know what they say about something that sounds too good to be true). My advice is to be sure and read that fine print on the contract. Three years is a long time and they obviously want to lock people n for a reason. Get some word of mouth opinions about the provider (beyond the salesman, I mean). You don’t want to always get a busy signal or get dumped every few minutes, requiring a call-back so that you have 3 years of frustration and not enjoyment. You don’t want to get stuck with a provider that is ridiculously slow or always covered in advertising or has a lot of hidden charges. We tried a month of “free” compuserve once and in just a couple of days we had racked up $30 or $40 in hidden charges – thank heavens we checked our account so we didn’t get an even worse surprise at the end of the month.

Make sure they can’t raise the monthly price on you for any reason, and also figure out how much 3 years of that service is going to cost you, and compare it to rates of other providers. If they’re charging you $50/month for the contract and you could have hooked up with another provider for $15/month, that’s $1800 versus $540 at the end of 3 years. Is the computer they are offering free really worth the $1300 it costs in added provider charges? Maybe you could get a better computer for $1300 and choose your own provider.

Of course this is all hypothetical because I don’t know what the real numbers are and I’m no computer guru so I’m talking over my head, anyway. I just know that my dh has looked at these sorts of ads in the past and figured that they really weren’t a very good deal. But that was in the past, and numbers could change. It might be a good deal, once you crunch the numbers and shop around.