Tuesday, August 31, 2010

You spent WHAT?!

I should have known better. I really should have......

This weekend, Hubby and I were busy all weekend, working on reorganizing his entertainment system. I call it his, though it is really ours, because, he wired that thing up and it would take a real whiz to figure it out. He has our living room set up with surround sound, so that it sounds like a movie theater. LOL!

Anyway, we were making some changes and I helped him most of the weekend. Admittedly, the rest of the time I was doing nothing. I have been trying to stay off my knee as much as possible because I hurt it a couple weeks ago and I do not want to go to the doctor. I am pretty sure it is just tendonitis. So, I had a legitimate reason for doing as little as possible when at home.

I usually go tot he grocery store on Saturday, but did not this weekend, thinking we would be done that day and I would just go on Sunday. I was wrong. And I didn't go. And we would need milk and bread before this week is over.

So, Hubby said, "I'll go on Tuesday." I thought that if he just went for milk and bread and a couple of other things, it would not cost much. I didn't even send him with a deal list and coupons, though, he would have done my deals. I figured they will come along again and was not worried about missing out.

Hubby called a little while ago to let me know he had gone to the store and got everything. Then, hesitantly, he told me he spent $82! ....$82!!! I never spend that much at the grocery store for a week's worth of groceries. He started listing off all the stuff he got, and the prices he told me were good ones. It was just.......$82!!!

I told him he cannot go to the grocery store by himself anymore......or with me.

He is banned from the grocery store.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

smile.ly—Be Heard. Be Happy.

smile.ly—Be Heard. Be Happy.

I got an email regarding a site where I could sign up and try new products. After a little research, I found that it is legit and a lot of people really like it. I can't wait to start trying new products and getting to talk about them and you all know how I love to talk!

Check it out if you have not before!

Happy Saturday everyone!

Friday, August 27, 2010

If you shop at Walgreens...

Walgreens has posted a corporate coupon policy on its website. I rarely have problems using coupons at Walgreens, but I have printed it out to carry in my coupon binder, so will be ready if I ever do.

I especially like that you can use 2 coupons on B1G1 sales. I have always been too nervous to even try that.

If you shop at Walgreens, check it out.

Happy Friday, all!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Unites State vs a Round Steak....just for Annie Jones

Sorry, Annie Jones. I just don't see it, now.

I guess I should have clarified...this is in response to a comment by Annie Jones on my post here. She thought my round steak pic looked like a map of the US with states missing. I just had to check it out. LOL!

14 lbs of Round Steak

Well, almost 14 lbs. I actually got 13.64 lbs.

To some this looks delicious. To me, it is just beef. Not my fave, though I will eat it.

On Saturday, I went to Kroger and checked the bargain bin in the meat department. No bargains there! But I was wandering around looking, since occasionally there are some markdown packages in the rest of the meats adn If I find a good price on a steak, I will get one for Hubby.

I picked up a package, labeled "London Broil". Hmmmmm....it was a big package....and it was only $5.73. I looked closely and saw that it was on sale for $1.99/lb. Not really cheap, but pretty cheap for beef lately. So, I threw it in the cart. When I checked out, I thought it was a good deal when the register said "savings $8.64.

I went home and threw it in the freezer. Later, I told Hubby I got it and what the price was and he asked how many I got. Ummmmm....one. He said, "you should have gotten a couple more." Usually he would head to the store and get some, but we had a busy weekend and his foot is giving him trouble, so I was doing my best to keep him off of it when we didn't have to go somewhere.

But I thought about that meat and that it was a pretty good price, so after work, and a workout at Curves yesterday, I stopped at Kroger and got 4 more packs....11 lbs for $21.42. So, I spent a total of $27.15 for almost 14 lbs of beef.

Bob will probably cook it in the crockpot and we will get several meals out of each package. So we have beef for a while. He is a happy boy!

Monday, August 23, 2010

My cake was a success!

I did it! I made the Diego cake!

I went to a local craft store last week, one day after work, and found a Diego candle, some jungle animals, palm trees and a few frosting colors that I didn't have. (Note to self: next time buy jungle animals from the dollar store. LOL!)

On Saturday morning, I baked a white 9 X 13 cake and left it to cool while I ran errands. That evening, after an impromptu dinner out and a trip to walmart, I got to work on the cake. I had gone to the Wilton website and got the recipe for Butter Cream frosting and used that. It was much easier to decorate with than canned frosting and withstood the heat, while driving to MIL's house, much better than canned has in the past. And it was so EASY to make! I think this will be my new decorator frosting. I thought about posting the recipe, but don't know if I should, so if you want it, just go to the Wilton site and look for the recipe. It was pretty easy to find.

First, I crumb coated the cake, then let it chill for a while. I have NEVER done this before, but it made such a difference, that I will definitely do it from now on. After the cake chilled for about 30 minutes, while I sat on my rear doing nothing, I frosted the sides in white, then I started coloring in separate bowls. I used medium green, dark green, blue and dark gray.

I was so please with the results. Here is it. There are 3 palm trees on the cake that are hard to see because of the wood table. It is a little messy in spots, so ignore those.
MIL asked if I bought it at Kroger. I laughed. I don't think Kroger sells cakes in 30 year old Tupperware cake takers. She loved it. Everyone else love it and Theo just loved it. He, of course, wanted to eat it immediately

After singing Happy Birthday and Theo blowing out the candles, Theo said, "This cake is yummy."

Ahhhh.....sweet success.

(I want to make another one now. The next birthday is not until September, though.)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The winner of the $25 Walmart Gift Card is.....

I had a contest here for a $25 Walmart giftcard, generously sponsored by MyBlogSpark and General Mills.
Well, we have a winner!! I know I promised that I would have Hubby pick a number, but I am at work today and forgot to ask him. So, I decided to check out the ever popular Random.org to randomly generate the winning number. And here it is:
I only had 20 comments ond 2 of those were from me!! How sad!
But not for Slugmamma....you posted the 5th comment, so you are my winner!
I will send you an email when I get home to get your mailing address. Unless, you read this before I get home and just want to send your information to fperkins2000 @ yahoo.com. I will provide the information to MyBlogSpark and your gift card will be sent to you.
Congratulations, Sluggy, and thanks to everyone that entered!!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Curses, foiled again!

It seems like I feel like this a lot. Yes, here comes a small rant.

Our oldest grandson, Theo, will turn 4 on August 29. So, a party is in the works. Our side of the family always has the grandbaby parties and MIL's house, so we only have to do 1 party and everyone that wants can come. Our grandbabies have a lot of partying to do, since Theo has multiple sets of grandparents. There is Hubby and me, MIL, Meredith's mom, and Theo's daddy's parents are also divorced and remarried. LOL!

Since MIL likes to run the show, I just let her figure out when we will have the party. I said I would make a cake and let me know when it was, but I had better get a little advance notice, since I was planning to make a train cake. I would post a pic, but can't find one exactly like I was planning. I had been researching and finding ideas for a couple of weeks.

Sunday evening, MIL called to tell me the tentative plans that she and Meredith made. And we would be having the party this Sunday when Mere gets off work. She will let us know when it is decided for sure, as Mere needs to check with Billy and see what his plans are, since he DOES take the boys every weekend.

Then MIL said that she went to the party store and got Diego plates and napkins. I asked why Diego? She said she "sneakily" asked Theo what kind of party he wanted. I figure here sneaky way was asking "Theo, do you want a Diego party." Well, of course, he does. What 4 year old wouldn't?

I reminded MIL that I had been planning to make a train cake. She told me it didn't matter....Theo wouldn't care. Sigh. Theo loves trains and would love a train cake, but it is not a part of a Diego party.

So, I am figuring out how to make a Diego cake.

Thanks, MIL.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Betty Crocker or Frontier Housewife

Which would I be? LOL! A week ago, I was thinking that I needed to make some sourdough bread, but I didn't have any starter. I usually always have starter in the fridge, but for some reason, I had thrown it out a few months ago. I cannot, for the life of me, think why, but I know I did it.

So, last week, I made up a new batch of starter.

I started to tell you all about making the bread, but remembered that I gave detailed instructions here last year. Except that time I didn't post a picture of my finished loaves, so here they are:

Yummy! Huh?

I have started decreasing the salt a bit. The recipe calls for a tablespoon, but that seems like too much to me, so I use half that...or 1 1/2 teaspoons.

I baked these yesterday and put one in the freezer. The other one is about half eaten. It is SO delicious.

Oh, and I could not be a frontier housewife. I just could not be hot all the time. So, it's Betty Crocker in the AC.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Win a $25 Walmart Gift Card!

Look what I got in the mail yesterday!! How exciting!

I received the giftcard from General Mills and MyBlogSpark to tell you about The Box Tops for Education Program.
The Box Tops for Education program is an easy solution and this year Walmart is making it even easier! From Aug. 3 - Aug. 31, head over to your local Walmart to find 4 Box Tops on participating General Mills products and earn more cash for the participating school of your choice. As your one-stop destination for all your needs this back-to-school season, Walmart is helping you save more and earn more with the Box Tops for Education brands you love.

With over 20 great brands and more than 40 products participating, here are just a few favorites that include 4 Box Tops that you can find at Walmart this August: Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal, Pillsbury Toaster Strudel pastries, Trix Yogurt, Hamburger Helper skillet meals, Totino’s Pizza Rolls snacks, Nature Valley Granola Bars and Betty Crocker Fruit Roll-Ups snacks. Be sure to keep an eye out for Box Tops on great products from Kleenex, Ziploc, and Hefty too!

I will be stocking up on granola bars and fruit snacks for the grandkids. Oh, and I can never have enough Hefty bags.

Do you want to win a $25 Walmart giftcard? All you have to do is tell me what Box Tops products or back to school products you would buy at Walmart. See....told you it was easy. Oh, and please leave me an email address so I can contact you if you win.

You can enter through Wednesday, August 18. I will then have Hubby draw a number and the winner will be sent a $25 by MyBlogSpark. How cool is that?

Good luck everyone!

Full Disclosure: Walmart, Box Tops for Education and MyBlogSpark provided me with a giftcard as well as another to give away.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Sluggy is at it again!

You may remember that Sluggy from DON'T READ THIS; IT'S BORING had a Boring Blog Box of Fun giveaway a couple of months ago. I won that one and wrote about it here.

Well, she has another one up. Go here and enter, 'cause Sluggy sends good stuff!

I asked again...

and got another discount.

Last week, I called AT&T to see if they could give me a deal on my internet, since the plan I currently pay $28/month for is being advertised to new customer for $14.95 a month.

I spoke with "Octavio". He was sorry, that deal was only for new customers. He could do nothing for me. I was totally irritated when he said:

"Well you participated in a promotion in 1999."

Me - "What? Are you kidding me??? That was 11 years ago."

Octavio, "I'm sorry, but we cannot offer you any kind of deal."

Well, it was close to time to go home, so I thanked him for his time and hung up.

After my success with Comcast, I decided to try again. So I "chatted" with an on-line rep that told me I would have to call customer service and gave me a number that I had not seen anyone else. I called and spoke to "Mary Alice". She was THRILLED to be of assistance. LOL!

I explained to her that I was not looking for the new customer deal, but that I thought that since I was a loyal customer, that AT&T should be able to do SOMETHING for me. (We were only paying $28/month for internet...it is not breaking the bank.) So Mary Alice did some checking on our account and said that she could give me a $5/month discount our our service (Express) or we could upgrade to the Pro speed and get a disount of $10 off the regular rate of that and get a $20 Visa giftcard.

Well, the Express speed has been fine for use, but I thought about it for a couple of minutes, then decided that it would still be $3 less than we are paying now, plus the GC, so I signed us up. I think Hubby will be happy with the higher speed, as he downloads music and uploads a lot of pics for ebay. Of course, it is possible that we won't even be able to tell the difference. LOL!

Still, I got what I wanted. A simple call saved us $4.67/month. (And yes, I could cut out internet and save $25/month, but I am not gonna.

Happy Thursday, All!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Ask and you shall receive....

discounts, that is.

We have had cable for many years. Is it frugal? Probably not, but we can afford it and we enjoy it.

When Hubby and I married, we both had cable, so were able to cut out one account. Yeah! We cut our cable expense in half, just by getting married. LOL!

We have Comcast now and were still on a plan known as "expanded basic". When the world went to digital, we did not. I mean, why should we change plans and pay more money when we were really already getting digital. I mean, no one was transmitting analog anymore, so it didn't matter what it was called, it was digital.

Our rate has gradually gone up over the years to the most recent $54.50/month + taxes. Once again, it is a splurge, but we can afford it.

Recently, Comcast has been advertising a "Digital Starter" package for $29.99/month, for new digital customers, everywhere. I have been seeing it on tv and on-line.

Hey, I would be a new digital customer!

So, I called Comcast and got amazingly excellent customer service! Once upon a time, calling their customer service was an exercise in torture. I hated it and avoided it with a passion. But the rep was so pleasant and told me that I could "upgrade" at no cost buy picking up the cable box at my nearest Comcast store. Hey, there is one RIGHT BY MY KROGER. I go there every week.

So, I went and picked my box. NOTE TO SELF: Do not ever go to the cable store on Saturday again.

When I picked up my box, I got the "new customer" deal....$39.99/month for the first 6 months and $54.50/month after that. So, after 6 months, we will be paying what we are paying now. So, just buy asking, we saved $14.51/month for the next 6 months. That's $87.06 for the year.

Oh, and somehow we have HBO. I didn't order it and I am not going to pay for it. Maybe it is a free limited thing. I will have to check. But, if is a mistake, I am not paying for it. So there!

So, ask for discounts. Sometimes you will get them.

Now I need to call AT&T.

Friday, August 6, 2010

"Always listen to Frances."

I am directly quoting my MIL from last night and seriously, I think my head has swelled.

We went to dinner last night to celebrate Samantha's 23rd birthday. Yes, today our middle child is 23!We went out after I got home from work, to eat Mexican food and it was delish. The night before, when Hubby was telling me the plans that he, MIL and Samantha made, he told me that when talking to Samantha, she said that she was going to quit her job when school starts, since it only pays minimum wage. She just got is a couple of weeks ago and prior to that went about a month with no money coming it. Her bf, who she lives with, works full time, so I guess he didn't mind her not bringing in money. Hubby did not know why she planned to quit.

So, last night, after all the hellos, and ordering of food, I asked Sam about her quitting the job. And I asked if she had gotten her work study. She did!!

I think I posted about Sam's mom filling out the FAFSA this year and Sam qualifying for NO aid. Well, right after I found that out, I told her to go to the financial aid office and talk to them. I didn't know if all work study jobs filled up, but she had just finished one at the end of June and I figure if all the jobs did not fill up that her boss would love to have her back so as not to have to train someone new.

She listened to me! She actually listened to me! She went, she talked, she got her work study back. I didn't ask if she got any other aid, but really I don't think she will need much more. She only has 3 classes and she is done. Oh, and MIL gave her $500 for the semester, just like she has done since Sam started college. (She did the same thing for her other 2 grandchildren that went to college.)

Samantha said, "Frances knows more about school than I do." Then MIL said, "Always listen to Frances. She knows what she is talking about." I was very flattered. (Though in this case, they were totally right.)

I was SO happy that Sam listened. I was afraid she might not. Maybe our little girl IS growing up!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Who spilled red punch on the carpet?!

Yes, that was my reaction when I found a big red spot on the carpet. The light beige carpet. Sigh!
Hubby said, "I told you about that earlier on the phone." Yes, he had mentioned that the cats were running and Mini had lept over the ottomon and knocked over his drink.

Disclaimer: This is not our cat, but it is jumping.

He did not mention that it was a RED drink and that he had not managed to get it all up. And that it was in 2 places, since it has spilled on both sides of the ottoman. When I saw it, I figured I would just be living with that big RED stain, since it had dried.

On Saturday, I decided to try to do something about it, so while Hubby and I were running errands, I picked up a can of foam carpet cleaner and a spray bottle of Resolve. When we got home, I emptied the entire can of foam cleaner on those 2 stains. Yes, the can is supposed to clean an entire room.

I let it dry.

I vaccuumed it up.

The stain was the same.


So, next, I got on the floor with the Resolve and a rag and started spraying and scrubbing.


Next, I mixed up some Oxy Clean and warm water and started scrubbing. After all, Oxy Clean removes anything from anything. Right?

Not RED punch.

Then I gave up and watched a movie. Later, after Hubby commented that the stain looked darker than it had. Arrrrgghhh! I decided that we would have to go buy a big rug to cover up the stains. Then I got on-line and started looking around and here is the recommendation that I found to remove red stains from carpet.

Mix a few drops of Dawn dish washing liquid in water. (The recommendations varied on amounts, so I used about 3 cups of water.)

Wet a towel and wring out. (I used wash clothes as they were easier to wring out.)

Lay the cloth on the carpet over stain and place hot clothes iron on the cloth. Let sit for 15 minutes. The stain should wick into the cloth.

Rinse cloth and repeat.

I decided to try this. I have an iron. I have Dawn. And Hubby has a box of old rags. At first, I could not leave myself to leave the iron in one place for 15 minutes. Well. I don't think I ever left it for that long. But the longer it set, the more stain came up.

Yes, my friends. This worked!! It took several hours of wringing out and moving the iron, but it was worth it!! I can still see a hint of the stains, but Hubby says he can't. I figure I can spend some time and go over the areas again at some point.

BUT this tip was FREE and it WORKED!

Monday, August 2, 2010

I love generic drugs!

I have had acid reflux for a couple of years. Well, I had it longer than that, but didn't realize it. I never had heartburn, but it often felt like I had a lump in my throat. I thought it might be my thyroid, since I am hypo, so went to see an ENT to have it checked. During the exam, he said, "That feeling is caused by your acid reflux." I said, "I don't have reflux." He said, "Yes, you do."

So, we started the quest to find medicine to treat it. After 5 or 6 different prescriptions, we found one that worked. Zegerid 40 mg 3 times a day. It is a strong medicine, but apparently my reflux was stronger. One pill is supposed to work 24 hours, but it didn't for me. I didn't like taking that much because it has a lot of sodium, but stuck with doctor's orders for a year. Then we decided that I could try 2 a day. Still a heavy dose.

The sucky part, my copay was $40/month. Fortunately, there is a $30 coupon on the Zegerid website, so I kept the copays manageble until this year. My insurance now requires that maintenance meds be bougth in 90 day supplies. The copay went up to $80/3 months. I could still use the coupon, but was still paying $50.

Saturday, I went to pick up a refill and the pharamacist got my meds and said, "That will be $10." I said, "No, it should be $80. There must be a mistake." He informed me that the generic just came out and he filled with that. I was so excited!!!

I just saved $160/year!! I love generic meds!