Friday, March 30, 2012

Cheap Groceries at CVS!

So I messed up my transactions a little this week, and "wasted" $1 in ExtraBucks, but I got some groceries for a great price, so I'm satisfied with my trip (though I'm still kicking myself over it...).  Here's what I got:

Transaction #1

(4) Snickers Eggs $2
-$1/2 Mars Easter Candy (I only had one)
-(2) $0.25/2 Mars Easter singles CVS CRTs
(1) Revlon Nail polish $1.57 (clearance)
-$1/1 Revlon color product
(1) Revlon eyeshadow $1.24 ("gold"--not the prettiest, but a big mm)
-$3/1 (off total order wyb product) Revlon eye or lip product CVS CRT
-$1/1 Revlon color product
(1) CVS Jelly beans $0.99 (these were gone within an hour of getting home...uhhh... =D)
(2) Cheezit crackers $3.98 (6 week low price here)
-$1/2 Cheezit crackers
(2) Colgate toothbrushes $5.98
-(2) $1/1 Colgate toothbrush
(1) Reinventing Beauty Magazine $0.99 ($3 q in there for Huggies--that coupon alone makes it a good buy!)
-8 ECBs--I'd only needed 7 =(

ECBs received: 1 Green Bag Tag, 2 Snickers eggs, 0.99 Jelly Beans, 4 Colgate

Transaction #2

(3) Dole Pineapple $2.64 (fresh produce is still dying in my house)
-$1/3 Dole Pineapple
(2) Cheezit crackers $3.98 (it's killing me to buy groceries at CVS b/c I can't get them 95% off ;D)
-$1/2 Cheezit crackers
-4 ECBs

So, including the 4 ECBs I burned, I spent $5.17 on $47.73 worth of groceries, make-up and candy.  All total, I saved 89%.  I blame it on the Cheezits. =D

Friday, March 23, 2012

My newest Paintings!

I don't know if I've blogged about my paintings yet.  But, I really enjoy painting when I get a chance.  It's also a great way to be frugal--you can give a priceless gift to someone while only having spent $10 or so (as long at you don't frame it--then it gets pricey).  That's actually one of the reasons I got into arts and crafts--there were things that I wanted that I couldn't afford, so I made them instead! 

I've been on a sort of painting binge lately (two in a month is a lot for me) because they had a great sale on canvases at AC Moore over Memorial Day weekend.  I finally got around to painting a photograph I had seen in a tractor supply ad.  I clipped it a few months ago because it reminded me of my little brother.  He's kinda a loner, but really loves animals; the lonesome cowboy and his dogs just reminded me of him.  I'm never completely satisfied with my work, but I can look at this painting and not cringe, so it gets my seal of approval.  =)

The second painting is for two of my best friends' (Laurie and Chris) wedding.  I was so tickled when they got together because I felt like I somehow played a part in it (though, really, I didn't).  I had this crazy idea for her: give her a "painting day" that included a lesson and fun girl time with me, Laurie, and our dear friend, Becky (she's gonna hate me for that =D).  At the end of the day, Laurie would get to bring home all of the paintings and hang them as a triptych.  We each chose a flower to represent us--I chose the iris because it's always been my favorite.  Plus, I figured since I'd drawn it so much, it would turn out pretty okay.  While Laurie and Becky finished their paintings by the end of the day, I was only half done (actually a third done if you count how much I re-painted).  But, I was able to get it done after three more days, and I ended up pretty happy with it.  Here's how the three paintings look together:

My CVS trip!

I had a good trip to CVS this week.  I got a few things I wanted for a great price!  In and out, it took maybe 20 minutes!  Here's what I got:

(3) Garnier haircare (shampoo, conditioner, hairspray) $10
-(3) $1/1 Garnier manu q's
-$2/2 Garnier shampoo and styler (otherwise I would've just gotten more shampoo--do you know how often I style my hair? Almost never.)
(1) Biore Strip $7.99 (I've been wanting to try these for a while, so I was excited about the sale and coupons matching up!)
(1) Biore Cleanser $8.29
-FREE cleanser wyb strips (7.99--should have been $8.29, but I didn't feel like fighting for $0.30)
-$4/$20 Beauty purchase (from last week, but it was still good until Monday)
-5 ECBs from last week

Got back : 3 ECBs for Garnier, 5 ECBs for Biore, 2.63 in Beauty Bucks (I have 5 ECBs waiting for me now)

So, including the extrabucks I gained, everything I got was exactly FREE!!!  Wow, I didn't realize I had done so well!  Yeah!  I'm awesome!

Monday, March 19, 2012

No coupons at Weis

I'm always saying that sales save you the most money and here's a prime example.  I went into Weis to get something easy for dinner, some juice and bread.  I decided to make a real trip out of it when I saw a number of my favorites on a good sale.  A good sale, remember, is 40-50% off, or BOGO, or whatever.  Just compare the shelf price with the sale price.  If it's about half, buy enough for 8 weeks/as much as you have space for/as much as will keep (remember you can freeze many refrigerated products).  So, I got everything I needed and more and ended up saving 42% without any coupons!!

I bought:
(4) Ocean Spray 100% juice BOGO @ $3.99
(3) Thomas English muffins Buy one, get TWO @ $3.99
(I always take advantage of this deal when it comes around, I freeze two and use them instead of bread for the following weeks)
(2) Keebler crackers $1.99 ea (even though this is 33% off, it's a best price for sandwich crackers)
(1) Lance crackers $2.49 (b/c I need Nekot cookies for survival)
(4) Stouffers large size TV dinners $2.50 ea.
(each of these feed the three of us comfortably, so it's a steal at $1/serving)
(1) Baby carrots $1.50 (the best price is $1, but I'm making a pot roast)
(1) Rold Gold pretzel twists $2.50
(1) Newspaper $2
(3) Fruit cups $1 ea. (okay price, but better than $3 for grapes that ended up rotting on my counter)

Total: $37.57
Savings: $27.49

Now Jesse says that stores just jack up their prices, so they can entice you with sales.  Very true, but I'd rather pay the low sale price for the foods I regularly eat, than the full "jacked up" prices any day.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Back on Track at CVS!

I told you last week how I got caught up in the coupon game and bought a whole bunch of things I didn't need.  Well, I'm happy to say that I'm back on the wagon!  This week, I got stuff I (or someone I knew) actually needed/wanted at pretty good prices!  Here's what I got:

Transaction #1:

(1) Planter's peanuts $3
(2) Reach 3 pack brushes $3.69 ea. (I was out of toothbrushes--how crazy is that?!?)
-$2/2 reach brushes (says 1 ct. ...I didn't have a problem using it on larger sizes...)
(1) Zyrtec 5 ct. $5.99 (doc just suggested I switch antihistamines, so this money maker was awesome!)
-$2/1 Zyrtec (excludes trial size--3 ct.)
(1) Gold Emblem peanuts in shell (hubby likes peanuts nearly as much as Coke) $1.59 (50% off clearance)
-$2/1 Gold Emblem nuts CVS coupon
not pictured:
(1) Huggies overnight diapers (b/c the regular ones simply won't do anymore) $12.49
-20% off ($2.45) CVS coupon
-$2/1 Huggies coupon
-15.99 ECBs
+ tax
= $6.96

ECBs received: 4 (Reach), 5.99 (Zyrtec)

Transaction #2

(1) Pediacare cough syrup $5.99
-$1/1 Pediacare
(4) Coke 12 pk (SOO excited about this deal!) $3 each.
-(2) FREE Coke 12 packs (bought with points from My Coke Rewards)
-11.99 ECBs
+ tax
= $1.72

ECBs received: 5 (Coke/Planter's deal), 5 (Pediacare)

Transaction #3

(1) Wireless air 60 (like a Kinect--no controller or anything) $4.99
-5 ECBs
+ tax

So, all total, I spent $8.98 and 10.99 in ECBs for $117.05 in products!  That's 92% off.  Nice!

More Bang for Your Buck!

I went to Weis and Martin's this afternoon to get some produce, cleaning supplies, and a quick dinner.  I ended up spending $26.64.  This is what $26 of food looks like at MSRP:

Here's what I got for $26:

I got $72.58 in groceries for my $26.64!  Mind you, I saved so much MOSTLY by waiting for the "best sales," NOT clipping coupons.  I used $6 in manufacturer coupons, and the rest of my savings were BOGO sales and "instant savings" deals. 

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Exactly what you shouldn't do...

Say to yourself: "Hm, I got a $5/$30 purchase in my CVS account, let's see what's on sale..." after you've already "passed over" the sales this week.  I'll let you in on a little secret: if you check your ExtraCare account on Monday, you'll see any extra coupons for that week, but you don't have to use them that week.  Just note the expiration date--this is your "print by" date, and you'll still be able use that coupon the following Sunday or Monday.  I don't know where my head was this week, but I decided that $5/$30 is the same as "thus saith the Lord."  Never mind the fact that I was planning on getting a lot of stuff next week and could have really used that coupon!  So, I wrote down all the "great deals" people were talking about and used some cherished rain checks (from Thanksgiving) to bump my total up to $30...when all I really wanted was nail polish and jellybeans...  So, here's what I got:

(2) Softsoap body wash $7 (like I need more body wash...and it wasn't even free...)
(1) Olay facial cleanser $4.49 (full-price and probably the best purchase of the trip...)
(1) Olay body wash $6.99
-B1G1 FREE body wash wyb an Olay facial cleanser (even though the cleanser cost less)
(1) CVS jelly beans $0.99
(2) Revlon nail polish (for my little niece--she's gonna be 1 soon!) $9.58
-(2) $1/1 Revlon color cosmetic (yes, this counts)
(1) Softlips vanilla $2 (rain check)
=$18.63 (my oop is so high b/c I didn't have any ECBs to roll into my transaction, but that doesn't really bother me ECBs=cash in my mind)

ECBs recieved: 15.99 (from the olay body wash, softsoap, jelly beans....everything except the facial cleanser)

So, it's like I paid $2.64 for all of it, or $0.33's not like it cost that much...but this is how people end up with 24 bottles of mustard.  The goal is to have what you'll need until the next sale, while keeping clutter to a bare minimum.  I'm not going to use 3 bottles of body wash in the next year, and they're bound to be free before then.  I've already promised away 2 bottles, and watered down body wash works really great in your puffy soap dispensers, so, hopefully I can minimize the damage of my shopping spree gone wrong.