Wednesday, March 31, 2010

All this for $6!

This was my coupon trips to Target and Albertsons yesterday! It all cost me $6 (plus tax). Everything to the right of the second Palmolive was free!
Most of the coupons came from the Sunday paper inserts, but I did get the coupon for the free Vitamin water off facebook. A lot of companies are offering free samples of their products or high value coupons if you become their "friend" or "fan". You have to decide if it's worth it to you.
The coupon for the pasta came from a free Family Circle magazine I got. I only had to pay .19 for the pasta, not too bad! One of the Johnson and Johnson buddies soap coupons I printed off of the internet. The free egg coupon came from the Albertsons circular. I just want to show you that coupons can come from many different sources. You just have to keep your eyes open and be on the look out for them.
And be shameless and ask for them! Like I'm about to do right now, if anyone doesn't want their Sunday paper coupons from last week, especially, the Snuggle, Seattles Best Coffee, and Clean and Clear ones, I will take them. Shameless, I know! Thanks!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Please Pray For My Grandma

Please pray for my Grandma, you may remember, she has ovarian cancer that had spread to her liver. She has been having severe pain in her lower back and abdomen. Friday she had a CT scan to see if it was a bowel obstruction or what the problem was. Yesterday, the call came that it was not an obstruction, but instead that her cancer had progressed more and that she needed to come in and talk with her doctor.
She has been very strong and very calm throughout this whole cancer process, but that was just too much for her to bear, so my Grandpa called and asked my Mom to come down and be with her. My Mom was really upset about it all as well, and so my Dad went with her.
They had the doctor appointment today and the cancer has now spread to the lymph nodes and that is what is causing the pain. She has exhausted all further treatment options, and is now officially on comfort care. They have given her six months to live. I had to gulp just now as I wrote that sentence. For many years I was a medical social worker. I was very used to writing in people's charts about their terminal condition and their life expectancy in very black and white terms, but it is much harder to write when it is my Grandma whom I love dearly. I do think for me to process it (and I know it's the same for my brother too) I do want to know all of the medical details. So, at times it may seem like I'm delivering cold facts, but to me it is comforting knowing all of the details.
Right now the three biggest prayer requests are:
1.) Her and Grandpa's salvation!
2.) Pain management
3.) Comfort for my Mom (and the rest of the family, but selfishly, I'm most concerned for her right now)
(picture from about 4 years ago)

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Catalina Problems

Recently my friend, Julie had a problem when she bought her Post cereal at Albertsons. She bought her first set of cereal and her Catalina printed with no problem, but when she made her second transaction, and bought three more boxes of cereal, no Catalina printed like it should have. The store was not able to help her with this because Catalinas are not managed by the stores, they are an independant company. I bring this up because this happens from time to time to people. If you find yourself in this situation, where you know a cat should have printed, but it didn't, here is the phone number you can call, 888-322-3814 and you will need to ask for customer service. You will have to have your receipt handy. They should send you a catalina in the mail for the amount of what should have printed out at the store. Hope this helps!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

I love my little bunnies!

I had fun crafting with my little bunnies today! We made bunny ears, bookmarks, chicks, and bunny cookies. Rylie also drew a cute lamb and caught up on some of her crafts and homework that she had missed from preschool.
Rylie is doing much better, her throat is healing nicely. She had her follow up appointment yesterday. Her doctor cleared her to go to her school pancake breakfast today, which she was very happy about. She still has to eat softer foods for another week, but they were upgraded a little bit.
The ENT also looked at Anna's tonsils and said that they were rather large as well, and we should have then removed when she is three. So, we'll see about that next year.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The Lord's Protection and Provision

I had two instances to thank the Lord for His protection and provision today.
The first happened this afternoon. After Rylie's doctor appointment I had gone to a grocery store that I had never been to before. I didn't realize that when I pulled out of the parking lot (different side of the store than when I pulled in) it was a one way street. I was going the wrong way!!! I freaked out! I tried to pull off to the side as much as I could since there were cars coming head on towards me, then I saw a huge, black hummer headed straight for me. Thankfully the Lord stopped him and he actually made it clear for me to turn around so I was going the right way. He even smiled and waved to me! I was so thankful! That could have ended so badly! I'm very thankful for the Lords protection, and yes, I will be pay extra attention next time I pull out onto a street I'm not familiar with!
The second instance today had to do with the Lord's provision. I have been keeping my debit card in my back pocket since Anna was born because it was too hard to carry a purse and a diaper bag, etc. Well, it has rubbed a spot off of the magnetic strip on my card. It has been causing a little bit of trouble in some machines but I usually just have to run it a couple times and it goes through. Occasionally the cashier has to type the numbers in. I keep meaning to order a new card, but I keep forgetting. On the way home tonight my car gas light came on so I stopped for gas. You can probably figure out what happened next, my card didn't work in the gas tank machine. So, I got the girls out of the car (they were in their pajamas at this point by the way because we had spent the evening at Grandmas and were coming home to go to bed), and went in to the teller. She tried it in her machine and it still didn't work. She said she wasn't allowed to type the numbers in, it was against the rules. She said to try the ATM machine, that didn't work either. I didn't know what I was going to do because I was out of gas and had no other way of paying for it. I was walking back out to the car silently praying for help and a man that was standing at his car pumping gas (that was not there when I had first tried my card, or had been inside the gas station), asked, "Do you need help?" I explained the situation to him and he asked if I wanted to borrow ten dollars. I started crying and then I felt dumb and apologized for crying. He came over and pumped my gas for me while I loaded the girls back in the car and actually put fifteen dollars worth of gas in my car for me! I gave him a pen and paper to write his name and address down so I could repay him but he said no that he had been in that situation before and he didn't want me to pay him back. Again, I was so thankful, I cried!
These were wonderful lessons from the Lord for me and the girls today!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Okay, one more for the wish list!

Here's a book for us couponers to get! "Pick Another Check Out Lane, Honey!" by Demer and Wheeler, otherwise known as the Krazy Koupon Ladies. You can buy the book on Amazon here!

Another one for the wish list

This isn't just a cute bag! This is the description from their website: "Organize your coupons in style with this handmade fabric covered 2" three ring coupon binder that is made to look like a designer tote. Features a soft, padded outer cover and two interior pockets. This oversized coupon organizer is a must for the serious couponer!" It holds over 3,000 coupons! It's on my wish list for sure! (If you want your own, you can check them out here.)

Here is my little girl in her new Ninja Turtle costume! (Birthday present)

Friday, March 19, 2010

More(sort of) Free Stuff and Cereal Deal

I wanted to mention that the Post cereal sale is going on at Albertsons for a few more days (unfortunately my add got taken out with my recycling so I can't tell you exactly how long.) So, even if you don't have any coupons, you can still score some good deals on cereal. The Post cereal is on sale for $1.59 which is not a bad price. The kicker is that there is currently a catalina going on in addition to it. A "catalina" is a promotion (from a national company, not run by any of the grocery stores, it is a coupon that prints out with your receipt when you buy participating items according to that promotion). Right now, there is a catalina promotion running at Albertsons for Post cereal from 3/26-4/18. If you buy 3 boxes of cereal you will get a coupon for $2 off your next order. If you buy 4 boxes you get $3 off your next order, and if you buy 5 or more boxes, you get $4 off your next order. So, if you need cereal and you don't have any coupons, it's still a good deal. I scored because I had coupons for my cereal making most of cereal either free or only .59 so then when I got my coupon for $4 on my next order it was like I was making money. Does that make any sense? A couple weeks ago they had a Betty Crocker fruit snacks sale and catalina promo like this. Because of coupons and double coupons, I was able to get 15 boxes of fruit snacks for almost free and it basically made me money because it produced catalinas which payed for almost all of the food for Anna's birthday party. So, yes, fruit snacks may not be the healthiest, but if they are something that I can not only get for free, but by getting them they can pay for "real" food, it's worth it to me to get them. Same with the cereal deal. Yes, I got a ton of cereal, but I paid hardly anything, but it gave me a catalina with which I was able to pay for the steak and veggies for our dinner tonight (which would have cost more than I payed for all of the cereal!). The yogurt, pasta, and Hamburger Helper were things I got for free using the doubler coupons!
I realized something today, that most of you probably already know. I had bought my little patient individual pre-made jello cups, which she ate the first day after surgery. I went to the store to get her more and they didn't have any. I didn't want to buy the box of jello because I didn't want to have a big bowl of jello in my fridge and I liked the convenience of Rylie being able to go to the fridge and get out her own snack. Then I remembered I had these little plastic containers that would work well. When I made the jello, it filled 5 of the containers which were the same size as the pre-made cups of jello from the store. Then it dawned on me that I had pain almost twice the amount for less jello just because it was pre-made! I made 5 cups, instead of 4 and it only cost me .79 (and that was without any coupons or sales, imagine how cheap it could be!). I'm sure most of you have realized this money saving tip, but I was dense about it! I'd love to hear you money saving tips!

This is just a picture of what you can do with all that cereal you get on sale! This is cocoa pebble marshmallow treats! Yummy! (By the way, the marshmallows were on clearance after Christmas for .37 because they were snowman shaped! After holidays is a great time to look for food clearance!)

Thursday, March 18, 2010


This was supposed to post with the post below! This was all the stuff I got for free the other day at Albertsons (I did have to pay tax)!

Great Deals!

All of this in the first picture cost me $3.50! It would have been over $60 if I had paid full price. I used a combination of Albertsons double coupons, manufacturer coupons, and catalinas (the coupon that prints out with your receipt at the checkout), and a store sale. I like to think of this as a "perfect storm"! I'm planning on using some of this cereal in some desert recipes, as well snacks and of course breakfasts!
The second picture is of things that I got all for free using the man. coupons and Albertsons doublers!

We have been really trying to eat at home more, especially since I'm building up my food pantry. I have been trying to calculate how much each meal has been costing me. So far they have been averaging around, $2-4 a meal, with leftovers. That is a fraction of what we pay at fast food or restaurants!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Thanks for the Prayers!

Thanks for praying for our Rylie! She came through the surgery just fine this morning. It actually went pretty fast. The doctor again stressed to us how HUGE her tonsils and adenoids were! He said it should make a huge difference for her! She has been resting on the couch watching movies all afternoon and eating jello and applesauce. The Vicodin has been working it's magic and she hasn't been in too much pain. Anna is spending the night at Grandma and Grandpa's and Rylie asked if Anna could just stay there until she is all the way better. She is liking having Mommy all to herself!

Please Pray

Please pray for my Rylie girl this morning as she is having her tonsils taken out. She is a little nervous that we won't be in the same room as her, but seems to be doing okay. I won't lie, Mommy is nervous about her going under the general anestesthia. But, I know that God is in control and will protect my precious little girl. I would just love your prayers! Thanks!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Rylie Girl

Rylie got to celebrate her Birthday at school today. She wanted to take Fruit Stickers instead of cupcakes to share with her friends. Her teachers gave her a crown to wear and a balloon, pencil and let her pick out a special toy. She picked a snake!
It was also a fun surprise that her and her cousin and best friend, Abby were wearing their new matching sweaters from Grandma! Grandma just bought them six new matching shirts and today they happened to be wearing the same one! It's so fun for them to be so close!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Chronicles of Narnia Party Ideas

When Rylie said she wanted to have a Chronicles of Narnia party, I found very few ideas online. Thankfully, my friend, Debbie, is wealth of creativity. I wanted to show you all a few pictures of some of our decorations and things in case you need some ideas for your Narnia party!