Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas and Freebies!

I am signing off for the rest of 2009! I am literally going to be out of the country, so not able to update and research deals. Please check back on January 1 for the deals and plan for the new year! Remember, check the other great blogs links on my side bar to keep up on the deals, coupons, and freebies. This is what I got for FREE today. Be sure to check through your coupons and see if any freebies or really great ones are expiring on 12/31/09. Also, watch your favorite stores on 12/26 for some excellent after Christmas sales. I hope you all have a happy, safe, and deal-filled holiday! Thanks for reading and your support, Dawn!

Deals of the day

Braved the crowds and listening to how "boring" shopping was from my daughter to get some deals! Albertsons: Oh, I love doubles. $5.64 for all of this! I used to pay that much for 2 juices and think that was a good deal! I could have even broken it up into two transactions to save $2 more, but again the "bored" shoppers was done, so I was too! I love how it is all "healthy" food too!
Rite Aid: Spent $14.47, but will get back $12.48 from Olay and the batteries put me over the top for getting the battery $5 SCR. The sunscreen and vitamins were free from coupons earned in the summer.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Updates on my favorites...

No new grocery ads this week. Albertson's does have doublers in their Sunday ad (or you should be able to get it in the store). This makes my coupon matchups even better, with doubles:

  • Clementines are now $2.99
  • Kraft Cheese now $0.49
  • Del Monte veggies, four cans for FREE
  • Tree Top Juice now $0.67

Also I have heard reports of $5/25 coupons for Rite Aid at However, I haven't been able to find it in my zip code. Try yours and you might get lucky. There is one at red plum (Thanks, Nicole!)

I am planning on hitting the stores tomorrow, with all the shoppers and two children. Wish me luck and I will post my deals for you to see.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Rite Aid 12/20-12/26

No $5/25 floating around out there, so head on over to video values to earn you $5/20 coupon. It takes about 15 minutes to earn enough points to print out the coupon, some good ones to watch are Progresso Soups, Huggies (if you are going for diaper deals), Pull-ups (two coupons), and Ziploc. Remember these are Rite Aid coupons, so they are stackable.


  • Toys 50% off

  • Lots of candy deals

  • Welch's Sparkling Cider $2.50, use $1.50 from 11/15 SS

  • Duracell Batteries, packs on sale for $5.99, $6.99, and $9.99, spend $15 get $5 SCR, varies coupons in 12/13 RP and 11/22 SS

  • Ziplocs $1.99, use $1/2 from 12/6 SS and the $0.50 coupon from video values. Buy three and submit for SCJohnson rebate worth $5. Remember you can get this rebate 3 times before June 2010.

  • Olay lotions and body wash $4.99 each. Buy two lotions, use two Buy body wash, get lotion free coupons from 11/29 PG. Submit for Olay rebate to get the purchase price of two lotions free. You get two lotions and two body washes free!

  • Huggies $8.99, Remember this is the last week to earn your free Huggies coupon (by 5 packs get a coupon for a free pack). the coupon project has all the great diapers scenarios for you. I have to admit diaper deals are my "Kryptonite!" After six plus years of having one or two kids in diapers and always buying name brand. I am loving all these deals to get good diapers for cheap! I might have to pass on this though as I have already earned my Huggies SCR and my gift of savings, not to mention my daughter has a good few months of diapers. I also have to hide them from my husband, because I have too many! Sigh, cheap diapers will come again.

This is also the last week to get your gift of savings, actually until December 24. So, if you need any last minute stocking stuffers, spend your money at Rite Aid.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Friday Food for Thought

The other day I got a sample of Dentek tooth pics from They are great to use especially for kids to floss. The package had a coupon on the back. It is for $1 off and doesn't expire until 2023! That is the year when my daughter turns 20! Which lead to me thinking, are we even going to still have "paper" coupons then or is everything going to be electronic? Is a coupon that is worth $1 going to even valuable then or will it be like a 10 cent coupon. Is Dentek even still going to be around? Crazy, I would like to know what marketer decided they needed to produce a coupon that didn't expire for 13 years and what is the logic behind it! What do you think? How old is your "oldest" coupon?

By the way this is my 101 post on this blog. How have you liked it? Did you learn anything? What would you like to see more of or less of? I have some big ideas that I am going to implement in January, but I would really like your input. Please leave a comment to let me know how I can best help you become a "deal diva!"

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Fred Meyer coupon booklet

Did you know that Fred Meyer has a coupon booklet at the front of the store? They put this out every month. The best part is they are store coupons so they can be stacked with manufacturer's coupons. Here are a few that caught my eye:
  • Free Fred Meyer preserves when you buy 2 jars Skippy Peanut Butter
  • 7-up, A&W, Sunkist, Squirt $6/6, stack with $1/2 Sunkist coupon from 11/15 SS to get six Sunkists for $3
  • Save $1/2 SC Johnson cleaning products, can be stack with manu and applies to SC Johnson rebate
  • Free Huggies Wipes with 2 packs of Huggies Diapers. Huggies diapers are $8.99 for Jumbo pack, use coupon for both packs of diapers and wipes. If you have a Fred Meyer rewards card, you can also load ecoupons ($2/pack) on your card. Go to and log in to your account (need card number) and then select your coupons. When you scan your card, they automatically come off. These are again considered "store" coupons so they can be stacked. (I have never done ecoupons, so I am going to try this and post my results next week!)
  • Save $10 of Spiral Sliced 1/2 ham

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Store Secrets: Superstores

So I was discussing this today on facebook and with friends...this question of the day do you WalMart? (or Kmart or Target, but mostly Walmart) You know when you walk in the store and just aimlessly fill your cart with things you "need." Walmart is the biggest spending trap out there people! After $150 and a visual assault later (you know what I mean, if not click here) you still need to repeat the experience next week. Yes, I used to do this.

Happy to say since I coupon and found the secret of drug stores, I do not. I still go in there, but it is rare and it always has a purpose (such as buying an AllYou mag). I have eliminated my several hundred dollar Walmart expense each month. I even have fuller pantry/bathroom/laundry room cupboards and am spending less. What some freedom to have to spend less time in super stores.

Now of course, I shop at all the time, but it is a totally different experience. Plus, it is a great source of free samples. Be sure and check to see if there are any new ones you need here. They still have the Huggies and Pampers samples if you haven't got them yet.

So I need to know, do you "Walmart"?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Albertsons 12/16-12/24

Lots of good deals on soda pop, meat, baking good, party items, check out grocery smarts matchups if you need a ingredient for that special holiday dish.

  • Clementines $4.99 for 5 lbs box, $1 coupon from 12/6 SS

  • Kraft Shredded Cheese $1.49, use $1/2 from 11/15 RP

  • Minute Maid Orange Juice $1.99

  • Del Monte canned veggies $0.50, use with this $1/4 coupon

  • Buy one Sara Lee Pie, get another pie and 2 Cool Whips free

  • Dole Pineapple and Mandarin Oranges $1, use coupon for both in 11/8 SS

  • Tree Top Juice $1.67, use $1/2 at this link

Rite Aid 4 day sale 12/16-12/19

I am loving these four day sales, wish they did it every week. Check out the deals of the week here, including the updated Prell deals, no coupons needed!
  • Duracell Batteries $5.99, use with $0.50 coupon from Sunday's paper, spend $15 get $5 SCR

  • Buy any Gillette Razor or cartridge, get a Gillette Deodorant free. Use get free Gillette body wash, when you buy any Gillette Deodorant (11/1 P&G), $4 off Gillette razor (11/29 P&G), and $1 off Deodorant (11/29 P&G)

  • Buy two Old Spice or Secret Deodorant, get one free. Use get free Old Spice Body Spray when you buy 3 Old Spice deodorants (11/1 P&G), $1 off two Old Spice deodorant (11/29 P&G) or Buy 2 secret deodorants get one free (11/1 P&G), $0.50 off Secret deodorant (11/1 P&G) PLUS qualify for a $2 SCR when you buy any two Old Spice or Secret Deodorants.

Monday, December 14, 2009

The 12 steps to couponing

Let's review the steps

1. The rules you must obey
A. Always use coupons with a sale
B. It's okay to let coupons expire
C. Don't hit every deal
2. Gather info (read blogs!!)
3. Gather coupons (paper, online, packages, in store, mail, magazines, etc..etc..)
4. Organize your coupons (find a system that works for you)
5. Plan your trip (list and coupon to use)
6. Shop (be vigilant, observant, and polite)
7. Home (look it over, plan your meals)
8. Balance your stockpile (become a storer not a hoarder!)
9. Use rebates
10. Share (what your learned, deals you find with others)
11. Make it a habit (fit your new way of shopping into your schedule)
12. Limit (learn what deals to hit or miss and stay on budget)

I hoped these steps have helped you become a better shopper and couponer. Please take a minute to review them. Don't give up and don't get frustrated. Start slow and simple, you will get it! Remember couponing is like a part time job (10-20 hours/week for me, including blog time). I saved $60 today at the grocery store and it took me about 1 hour to plan. $60 an hour is a pretty nice part time job if you ask me.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Rite Aid 12/13-12/19

This is the only $5/25 coupon that I know of out there. Hopefully they will release another soon, I know they will. Also you can always get a $5/20 coupon at video values at Now on to the deals!

*Free: Philips Flip Universal Remote $9.99, $10 SCR

*Buy $20 in Hershey's Products get $5 SCR, Hershey's Kisses on sale for $1.99, use buy 3 get one free coupon from 12/6 SS. Hershey's Miniature are also on sale for $1.99, use $1/2 coupon from 12/6 SS for some cheap stocking candy.

*Free: Chapstick fresh effect $2.99, get $2.99 SCR

*Band-aid $1.99, with in ad coupon only 0.99

*Nivea Lip Care $2.99, $2 SCR

*Overage: Prell Shampoo 0.99, $2 SCR, overage of $1.01 UPDATE: You can get 5 SCRs on this item, so buy 5 Prells and make $5.05 in overage!

*Free: LA Looks Gel 0.99, use $1 coupon from 10/4 SS

*7 UP two liters, three for $3.99, use in ad coupon to get 3 for $1.99 UPDATE: Sunkist is included, use $1/2 from 11/15 SS to get 3 2 liters for $0.99!

Also please check out
hip 2 save for some AWESOME scenarios. Check back on Tuesday when I post the deals for the 4 day ad. Cheap batteries to finish your Duracell deal!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Blogosphere deals

One of the best things about blogging, is finding and sharing good links. Here are my two favorite from yesterday:

the krazy coupon lady has a giveaway for their coupon book. What a great way to learn more tips. I just might have to order myself this for Christmas.

frugal living nw has some great "money maker" ideas on that great Olay lotion rebate. I have some of this and is smells wonderful. Here is the rebate form, basically it is buy two Olay Quench body lotion, get a full rebate. There are some great coupons circulating that allow you to also get two free body washes with your lotions, so check frugal living to see how.

Did you find some great deals somewhere, please share.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Friday Food for Thought

Quote of the week:

My mother-in-law, who is not a couponer, but one of the best shopping buddies in the world, just bought a boutique-style, expensive looking nativity set. She showed it to us and mentioned that she got it 50% off. My husband questioned how much it was. She smiled and said:

"It doesn't matter how much, the more expensive it is the more you save when it goes on sale."

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Albertsons Doubles Catalina

I had read about a doubles catalina printing at Albertsons from fabulessly frugal. Since I had a few items to get for a holiday party, I decided to check it out. The deal is spend $25 get 3 double manufacturer's coupons catalina (exactly like the regular doubles). You have to spend the $25 between now and Sunday and spend the catalinas between now and Tuesday. I was a little concerned because I was wondering if this was Albertsons "new" way to have us get doubles, instead of releasing them in the paper. The cashier/manager/5 star! said, "No this is just an extra thing going on right now." So there you have it, if you are headed out to do a $15 catalina promo, just add the extra $10 with something you need and then you will get the doubles to use.

Q & A

Question: I really want to learn this couponing thing, I just get so confused and overwhelmed. Where do I even start?

First thing, USE COUPONS WITH SALES. Second thing, collect coupons (Sunday and online)and get informed. (Blogs). Review my steps. Start slow, choose ONE store and just coupon there for a few times. Then gradually start adding stacked coupons, rebates, and other tricks into the mix. The most important thing is not to get discouraged. One day it will all click. Be sure to ask lots of questions to me and other bloggers, we have blogs set up to help people learn. That would be my best advice, what is yours?

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Store Secrets: Land of No Doubles and other Coupon Injustices

I live in the Pacific Northwest, more specifically Oregon. I have also lived in Utah for most of my life and guess what all of these places are in the "land of no doubles." You know when you see those coupon tv stories where the lady fills her cart and pays like 27 cents, well how does she do it? Two secrets they don't tell you 1)she has like 20 coupons for the same item that happens to be priced so it is free that week and 2)she is going to a store that doubles or triples coupons. Yes some places routinely double or even triple coupons, no extra hassle, no extra coupons. Oh the irony to think I lived in the Midwest for two years as a poor newly wed graduate students and we never knew this. :(

The only time I get double magic is when KMart doubles, which hasn't happened for almost a year ago in the Northwest, or when Albertsons releases their doublers. I hate how you can only use three per transaction though. I am not really a fan of multiple transactions, plus when they did let me do it at Albertsons, they made me feel like I was getting away with something. Triples coupons, never even heard of it!

Another injustice is the price difference and lack of sale items in what is supposed to be a "national" ad...why? Why the unfairness? Aren't Western and Northwestern couponers deserving of the deals? Why do you hear about a great $3 coupon only to find it is $0.75 for your state or zip code? Seems just unfair to me, but maybe there is a reason, I just don't know it, do you?

And what about pulling the Red Plum inserts from the Utah, Idaho, and Nevada papers? Well, at least I can do something about that one. Go here to sign up for the Red Plum via mail. I have to warn you though, I tried this a few months ago and never got anything. However, Oregon still gets the Red Plum inserts in the paper and I did move since then, so probably one of those reasons is why. Which brings me to another injustice, why doesn't the postal service consider coupon mail "forwardable"? I know it is my favorite piece of mail to get, hmmm no love for the couponers.

What injustices have you noticed in your area? Let's vent!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Albertsons 12/9-12/15

Some better deals this week. Here are the deals I like.
In ad coupons:
*Darigold Sour Cream 99 cents, use $0.40 from 10/11 SS, limit 2.
*Sargento Shredded Cheese, $1.49, limit 4
*Tropicana Juice, $2.39, limit 2.
*Darigold Butter, $1.79, use $.30 from 11/22 SS, limit 2.

*Stouffer's Lasagna party size $8.99
*Tyson Anytizers $2.49, use with $1.50 from 10/11 SS

Yeah! We have a catalina promo! Spend $15 get $5 cat.

*$1 Items: Progresso Soups, Betty Crocker Cake Mix, Progresso Bread Crumbs, Green Giant Boil in Bag Veggies

*$2.49: General Mills Cereal, Granola, and Snack Bars

*$1.25: SoBe or Pepsi Soft Drinks

*$1.69: Pillsbury Crescent, Grands, Sweet Rolls, Gold Medal Flour

*$1.99: Betty Crocker Premium Brownies, Muffins, Fiber One Toaster Pastries

*$1.39: Progresso Soups

*$2.49: Pillsbury Cookie Dough, Pie Crusts, Big Cresent or Flaky Twists.

*$1.29: Old El Paso Refried Beans, Betty Crocker Potatoes

*$2.49: Old El Paso Dinner Kits

*$0.69: Green Giant canned veggies (good filler to get to $15)

*$1.69: Chex Mix, Bugles, Betty Crocker Cookies, Bisquick

*$1.99: Green Giant Steamers

*$1.49: Betty Crocker Frosting

*$4.99: Aquafina select varieties.

The best part is a lot of these products have three places to print off coupons, so you can get 6 per product. Check out,, and
boxtops4education (all on sidebar)
You should be able to do several transactions and "roll" your catalinas. We "might" even get doubles on Sunday to save even more (cross your fingers)! Check out
a thrifty mom and the krazy coupon lady for more matchups.

Rite Aid, 4 day ad

Rite Aid is releasing a four day ad this week and next. You can check the ad out at iheartriteaid In addition to the other deals of the week. Here are a few more deals for 12/9-12/12.

*SanDisk SD memory card $12.99, $5 SCR=$7.99

*All detergent $3.99, use $2 from 12/6 RP=$1.99

*Huggies Big Box diapers $17.99 with in ad coupon, use
$2 off any box=$15.99 for a big box! Don't forget that you have until 12/26 to get five packs to qualify for the free pack of Huggies coupon SCR.

*Numerous Christmas decor/gift/candy specials.

Deal scenario:
Buy 1 Big Box Huggies $19.99
Buy one All Detergent $3.99
Filler for $1.02 (cheap Christmas candy perhaps, I used two 99 cents candies)
Use $5/25 coupon from
Use in ad diaper coupon and $2 manufacturer's coupon
Use $2 All Coupon
Pay $14.96, plus receive a $5 gift card to Rite Aid through Gift of Savings (spend $25 get $5 gift card) You have to register, if you haven't at Rite Aid Single Check Rebates to get the gift card. It is a simple 5 minute, free process.
If you plan to spend more at Rite Aid this month, you can earn a $20 gift card (instead of the $5) when you spend $100. These totals are pre rebates and coupons.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Macy's One Day Sale

Tuesday and Wednesday, is a One Day Sale at Macy's . (Could someone please tell me why a One Day Sale always goes two days?) There are lots of coupons at to download right now. There is supposed to be a $10/$25, but it is not up yet. It should be up in the morning or you can get the coupon in the store.

UPDATE: $10/$25 Coupon

JC Penney Rewards

If you have not joined JC Penney Rewards click here and join. I just got another $10 off $10 purchase coupon. They mail these out several times a year, in conjunction with other coupons. The online code is NICE4U, you do have to pay shipping though. I went into JCPenney today and got my son a pair of jeans for $.99, normally $21.99, on sale for $10.99, then used my $10 off coupon. That is over 95% savings!

Step #12: Setting limits

This is the last step in my "12 steps to couponing" program. So consider yourself graduated! Next week we will have a review.

The first time you save more than you spend, get a freebies, or even get paid to take something home, is exhilerating! You will be wanting to hit every store in town to cash in on the great deals. My recommendation however, is DON'T! Several $25-50 trips at several stores will still blow your budget no matter how many "great deals" you are getting. Your time and energy is also important so spend it wisely. Set a limit for yourself and stick to it. You will have less burnout and learn the couponing system faster. This is hard to do and I am still working on it.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Rite Aid Deals 12/6-12/12

Some interesting deals this week, don't forget your $5/25 from

*Phillips Flip Style Remote Control $12.99, $10 SCR=$2.99

*Duracell Batteries, spend $15 get $ SCR. Rechargables and chargers 40% off.
In ad coupon for $2 off hearing aid batteries.
In ad coupon for $1 off batteries, both can be stacked with manu from 11/22 SS
Be on the lookout for coupons inside packages too. I saw $15 coupons in specially marked packs.

*Welch's Sparkling Cider $2.50, use $1.50 from 11/15 SS or
$2 printable

*Secret/Old Spice Deodorant 2/$4, SCR $1 on 2, use $1/2 11/29 P&G
Also in 11/29 P&G, buy 3 deodorants get free body spray
and buy 3 deodorants, get free aftershave (all Old Spice coupons)
For Secret use Buy2 get one free from 11/1 P&G

*Scotch pop up tape 2 for $4.28, get $3.29 SCR on 2, use $1/2 from 12/6 RP FREE TAPE. Let me just say, I tried this before and it is a great product. I could barely get it away from my daughter though, tape and a "bracelet" she was in heaven!

*Dymo Labelmaker $19.99, get $10 SCR UPDATE: my store had did not have this product in their store and did not know why not. I got a raincheck, if it pans out, I will let you know the details of getting an SCR item with a raincheck.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Q & A

I had a question about Staples Rewards. I've never used the program. Is it like a rebate or do they give you a gift card to use at Staples? I'm trying to decide if the battery deal is good for me at not. We rarely go to Staples otherwise.

Good question, I will try to explain the Rewards program a little more. Please review
Staples Reward program at their website if you have more questions.

Staples Rewards program is simple. You sign up at the store or online and then are given a card to use each time. It tracks your purchases automatically. The main benefits are:
*10% back in Staples Rewards on all ink & toner purchases
*10% back in Staples Rewards on all case & ream paper purchases
*10% back in Staples Rewards on all Copy & Print purchases

In addition to these, they also give you $3 for each ink cartridge you recycle.

They also will frequently have rebates. Right now the rebate is on batteries, you buy them and it is automatically attached to your account. You can check this online to make sure it was credited to your account. Once a quarter, they will mail out coupons for the amount you have earned. It is an actual coupon with a bar code. It has your name and account number on it (for tracking) and an expiration date, so be sure to use it before it expires, which is usually a few months.

To sum it up, if you don't have a rewards card:

1)Go to Staples, buy batteries (at front display in my store)
2)Cashier will ask for your rewards card, if you don't have one they can give you one right there. It is a simple 3 minute form with just a few name/address/email/etc type questions. (It is not a credit card!) Once you have a card, the rest is done automatically by Staples. All you have to do is wait for your coupon.
3)Your coupon should come in the mail for $12.99 in January. (You can double check your account status online if you want, but not necessary)
4) Use it like cash on anything in the store. No minimum purchase amount required.

It really is free batteries with very little effort. However, like all "deals" you have to decide if it is worth the time and effort on your part, to get to the store, to find the product, to fill out a card, etc... Use your best judgment.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Fun sweep going on right now!

I love sweepstakes, especially online ones. They are so easy to enter. Don't think you don't have a chance either, because in the past year I have won $5000 and a Amazon Kindel, plus I just received a free bottle of Redkin hair care product from a sweep a couple days ago.
Two fun ones right now: Ellen's 12 days of Giveaways starts today. Enter everyday for a chance to win Ellen's pick of fab Christmas gifts.

Lee Jeans sweeps this is through facebook. Every day for a month Lee Jeans is giving away 120 pair of jeans. Pretty good odds there. I know they are the original "mom jeans" but the picture looked much better than the "old" ones. Besides who doesn't need another pair of jeans. There are also men jeans available to choose from.

Good luck and let me know if you win! Don't forget to check out freebies 4 mom too. Heather regularly updates the most winnable sweeps that are out there.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Staples Deals

Staples has a couple of good deals right now. First ink, through 12/19/09 Buy $50 in ink, get 20% back in Rewards and $6 back per recycled cartridge. This is double the 10% and $3 you usually get. This Reward is in the form of a Staples coupon that they mail out quarterly. You must sign up for Staples Rewards (free and easy to do). You can also recycle up to 10 cartridges per month. This is a good deal if you need ink.

The best deal though: FREE BATTERIES. Also need Staples Reward, but buy a 20 pack of AAA or AA Duracell Batteries and get the full purchase price of $12.99 back in the form of a couple for Staples mailed out in January. Limit of 2 per customer per week. Offer good through 12/26/09.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


So I have been waiting for the new Albies ad, because we have been 5 days without any sales...that is forever in coupon land. I even went and bought the liberal granola-y paper today hoping to get the ad early, which is was not in. So finally I got it and big disappointment. There are no fantastic promos or freebies or double coupons. Apparently, they want to promote Red Box though because there are 3 ways to get free codes. I don't know about you, but I would much rather have catalinas then Red Box codes.

Anyway the best deals I can see
*Del Monte Fruit Naturals $1, use $1/3 coupon for 3 for $2
*Yoplait Yogurt $0.39 with in ad coupon (limit 9), use 0.40/6 from 11/8 SS or .50/6 from (sidebar)
*Nestle Morsels $1.69 with in ad coupon (limit 3), use 0.50/1 from 11/1 RP
*Freschetta Pizza $3.99 with in ad coupon, use $1 coupon from
*Lots of B1G1 meat deals
*Lots of good (not great) prices on Albertson's brand products.
*PG Promo, Spend $20 get $5 Cat and 5 Red Box codes
Here are the products and matchups from Sundays (11/29) PG
Dawn $2.29, 0.25 coupon
Tide $10.99, 0.35 coupon
Febreeze Luminary $14.99, $3.50 coupon
Febreeze Candle $9.99, $2 coupon
Prilosec $25.99, $3 coupon
Charmin $9.99, 0.25 coupon
Puffs $1.29, 0.25/3 coupon
Bounty $9.99, 0.25 coupon
Pampers $19.99, $2 coupon
Old Spice Deodorant $3.69, $1/2 coupon, also free body spray with 3 deodorants coupon, and free after shave with three deodorants coupon.
Covergirl 25% off, save $1 on any product coupon
Other product included, but no matchups from Sunday. P&G coupons tend to expire at the end of each month, so Sundays insert will be worthless after 12/31/09. Not the best prices ever and the P&G coupons are sometimes skimpy, other than the b1 get something free ones. You will get much higher P&G coupons in the mail or in package inserts. If you are going to do this promo, look for $15 coupon booklets in some specially marked packages. (I have seen them on Pampers and Tampax recently) I might have some coupons for Cascade and paper towels (from mailings) that I will use to stock-up. For more matchups check out a thrifty mom
Off to bed now, as you can tell I am tired :) I will expect better next week Albertsons, don't disappoint again.

Monthly deals: December

What is a good deal this month? December is the best time to buy
*toys and electronics
*new-model cars-dealerships want to meet end of year goals
*homes-the best time to the year to buy is between Christmas and New Year's. Owners are usually in a generous mood through the holidays and also want to close the deal before the new year.

Also, be sure to check out After Christmas Sales, especially December 26, for great deals.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Store Secrets: Cyber Monday, Coupon Code, & Ebates

Today is Cyber Monday, the internets version of Black Friday. I must admit the deals look better to me and best of all, no crowds. The deals are popping up fast. hip 2 save, maven of savin, my frugal adventures and the coupon project all have several great posts of Cyber Monday deals.

Here are the secrets for shopping online:
1) You must sign up for ebates. This is an online rebate system that send you cash back on percentages of your total purchase price, anywhere from 3 to 20%. Almost every online store in on their site. You must go through their page first, but other than that it is super easy. Simply log on to ebates, then find the store you want on their list, click on it, and shop as usual. Ebates will credit your account for your rebate amount. Today is a great time to sign up, because they are offering additional promotions to new members and lots of stores have double ebate rewards today (like 10% instead of 5%).

2) Always look for a coupon code for your store. You might get free shipping, an extra percentage off, or a free gift. You can google it, but my favorite is retail me not because it wades through the spam for you and just gives you legitimate codes.

Check out this deal to practice these two secrets. (Yes, you can practice, just don't fill in your credit card!)
1) Go to ebates and find Victoria's Secret (VS purchase earn you 6% back).
2) Choose 3 of the 3/$30 sweaters.
3) Add one "free" scarf
4) Go to checkout
and enter codes:
vssave20 (20% off single clothing item)
scarf09 (free scarf)
3for30 (3 sweaters for $30)
5) Your total should drop to $30.99, great deal!

Now you have one more secret in your arsenal. Please don't ever pay full price online again.

Black Friday Winner

Nicole won the Black Friday contest for sharing her deal of $3 Walmart PJs. Thanks Nicole! Next week, I will send you a set of coupon inserts!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Rite Aid 11/29-12/5

It is the start of a new month of SCRs. Don't forget to request your check from November. Also Gift of Savings is in full swing, get a $20 gift card back for spending $100 (before coupons and rebates). and both have $5/$25 coupons, so check there first.

Freebies & Cheapies:

*Gillette Fusion Power Razor $9, $5 SCR, Use $4/1 coupon 11/29PG to score another free razor.
*Oral-B Stages toothbrush $2.49 , $1.50 SCR, Use the $1/1 coupon 11/1PG for a free toothbrush.

*AMO Complete Multi Purpose Solution $7.99, $7.99 SCR, Use the $1/1 coupon 10/25RP
Final cost FREE + a $1 moneymaker!

* Pampers Jumbo Pack Diapers/Training Pants $8.99, Use the $1.50 or $2 coupon 11/29PG. Did anyone else get their free sample of the Extra Protection Diapers, they are wonderful!

*Duracell SCR, spend $15 get $5 SCR, Duracell is on sale 40% off this week. There is also an in ad coupons for $2 off a AA or AAA 12 pack, making the price $7.49 each (tricky, two equals, $14.98). There is also a 0.75/1 coupon in the 11/22 SS for 4 pack or larger. Plus there is another in ad coupon for buy a AAA 20 + 5 pack, get 10 photo greeting cards free. Lots of different opportunities to get to your $15. A great rebate for this time of year. Remember, you don't have to buy all $15 in one transaction either. Your total just has to be $15 before the end of the rebate period 12/26.

**Another great coupon I liked in the paper, Take an extra 10% off toys and bikes with in-ad coupon(no limits) at Fred Meyer.
I am also anxiously awaiting the new Albertsons' ad. I am curious, since their old ad expired on Thursday, so they have no specials right now? I might have to go see for myself tomorrow.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Black Friday: Rite Aid Edition

I am a little late posting this, sorry busy Thanksgiving. Please check out
hip 2 save and the coupon project for some very comprehensive deal matchups and lists for Black Friday

I am probably only going to make it to Macy's tomorrow as that is all the time I have. I was very excited to see they had a $10/25 coupon and 15% of entire purchase coupon. Hopefully I will find some good ways to use them.

I did go to Rite Aid today! It was so good! Here is the breakdown:

* 4 Ziploc bags, on sale for $1.88 each, used 2 $1/2 from 11/15 SS, $5.52, plus will send off for S C Johnson rebate, total 0.52 for four boxes!

*2 Wet Ones Wipes, on sale for $1.88 each, used 2 $1.50/1 coupons, 0.76 for two containers.

*Schick Quatro Titanuim Razor, priced at $1.99 (usually $10.99), used $2 coupon from 11/22 SS, overage of a penny.

*Schick Intuition Razor, priced at $1.99 (normally $9.99), used $2 from 11/22 SS, overage of a penny. Note my Rite Aid said only one razor (of each) per family, I have originally planned for two.

*Gillette Shave Gel, on sale for $1.99, SCR for $1, used .55 from 11/1 PG, total: 0.44.

*Bic Soleil Razor, on sale for $5.99, used in ad coupon for $4 off stacked with $2 coupon from 11/22 SS for a penny overage.

*Herbal Essences Shampoo, on sale for $2.99, SCR for $2, used free product coupon from facebook promo, $2.99 overage.

*Huggies Overnight, $11.99 (no sale just needed them) used $2 printable from, on pack 3 of 5 for free pack SCR.

*Oral B Cross Action Toothbrush, $2.99, SCR $2.00, used 0.75 coupon from 11/1 PG, total: 0.25.

*Scope Outlast Mouthwash, $3.99, SCR $3, used $1 coupon from 11/1 P&G for penny overage.

*Tampax Pearl, $3.99, SCR $3, used $2 coupon from previous Walmart sample (sign up for those at for $1.01 overage!

*6 Huggies Wipes on sale $2/4 (my store was really well stocked) used various $.50 and $1.00 coupons in my collection for inserts, mailings, etc... Total $8.50.

I also used a $5/25 purchase, found on right now. My total out of pocket was $28.40 (which of course was money I earned on previous months' SCRs) and I will get back $11 in SCR and $5 back from SC Johnson, so really $12.40 for all of this, barely enough to cover the diapers. Plus all of the prices before coupons and rebates ($61.19) goes towards my Gift of Savings Gift Card. Now is a great time to give Rite Aid a try if you are still haven't. It is so much fun to bring home great products for pennies on the dollar.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Store Secrets: Black Friday

It is almost here: Black Friday! I love this day, not because I love pushing people, crowds, and getting up at 4:00 am. It is more about a tradition of shopping and starting the holiday season. I am not a camp outer, I usually will make it to the stores about 8:00 am. I like to just spend the day with my girlfriends and sisters/mom (if I am that lucky) out shopping. I am only going to go to the stores in my town, which aren't many. Look tomorrow for the deals and some links to help you get started. Make sure you get a paper EARLY tomorrow so you can scan the ads during the football games. If you want a sneak peak, here are the scans of the ads for most stores.

*A little caution though, Black Friday is the KING of loss leaders. Cheap TVs, computers, get you in the door and spend more. There are usually limited amounts of these products, so don't be tempted to buy something (you don't need) just because you are there. It is always good to have a plan and a list! :)

So now I am thinking of a little contest. Leave a comment about one Black Friday deal you found or did find. I will randomly draw a winner and that winner will receive one set of coupon inserts. The contest is open until Sunday at midnight.

Happy Shopping and Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Q & A

Q & A: question from a reader:

I have heard and seen expressed by many couponers that it is usually the best deal to use your coupons to buy the smallest size items you can (trial or travel sizes.) I am having a hard time understanding this concept - sure you get lots of free stuff by doing it that way, but what if you really need and use that item, a travel size really isn't going to last very long. So maybe that's the key, those coupons you have that aren't your regular items, you can use for small sizes but ones for things you would use regularly use for a more normal size product. I don't know - what is your take?

Good question, I have been going to address coupon/product size for awhile now. First of all I am not a huge fan or the travel section, simply because most of that stuff, shampoo, toothpaste, deodorant, I can get free or very cheap by doing other deals, especially at drugstores. A lot of couponers on other blogs might get 10-12 copies of the Sunday paper, so they have 10-12 copies of every coupon. Buying ten travel size bottles of mouthwash for free, easily equals a larger bottle, even though it is less convenient to use. The reason most couponers say to buy the smallest size, is because it drives your out of pocket expense lower. For instance if the 24 oz size is $1.99 and the 36 oz size is $3.19 and you have a $1 coupon, it is the better deal to use it on the smaller size. Ounce per ounce, it is usually cheaper to do it this way. I usually buy the smaller size (not trial) because of this. Three more things to consider when using coupons:

1)How often you use this item? Many jumbo size items, might go bad before you use it all anyway, so the smaller size is better. If you use it everyday, the large size might be better.

2)Try not to be brand loyal. There are some things I have to have a certain brand of and so I watch for sales on these, but for the most part for me, juice is juice, cereal is cereal, shampoo is shampoo, cleaner is cleaner, etc, etc... Some brands that have been around for years have few coupons, whereas newer brands have lots of coupons. When a product is released, it usually is quickly followed by coupons, sales and rebates. This is a great time to try new products. You might find one you love better than your old standby.

3) How often do you see coupons for this product? I will use Huggies Diapers for an example. About once a month Huggies has coupons in the paper, often they are on the internet, and I can request to get them from the website. Since I usually have a coupon for Huggies, I will buy the smaller size because I know I can get another one soon. Some products like Dreyers Fruit Juice Bars (one of my favorites) only come around about twice a year. I might consider buying a larger size on this because a coupon is so rare for this item.

I hope that helps. It is really up to personal discretion. Remember your primary goal is drive down your out of pocket expense, so look for the best deal for you. Have a question, let me know because someone probably has the same one. Email me at dealsbydawn at yahoo dot com.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Step #11: Making it a habit

People always say to me, "Coupons take up too much time and I never save that much." This statement is true if you haphazardly coupon now and then, but if you are couponing a lot, it becomes a habit. A habit that changes your way of thinking about shopping. Now, rather than get what I need right now, I buy what we use(with coupons) when it goes on sale. That way I am ahead of the game when I go to make my favorite recipes. Case in point, Albertsons today, spent $59.06 for 64 items or just 92 cents an item! I saved $111.83, wow!
Some of this stuff is for this week and Thanksgiving, but a lot of it isn't. Cranberry sauce, canned fruit and veggies (kids stacked them for the pic :)...), Rhodes rolls, stuffing, butter, and Miracle Whip were just on good sales and stuff we use for our meals, so I stocked up. Also the turkey was only $2.68 for an almost 12 pound turkey. Our Albertsons ran out of the 16-22 lbs turkeys that were part of the buy $25 worth of groceries get a Village Market Turkey for 23 cents per pound. They substituted smaller turkeys, which was fine by me, because this was just for my family of five for a special dinner. I went with my Kindergarten daughter, so I also ended up with straw, Cheese-its and Lunchables (and said "no" to probably 100 other things) that weren't at the best price ever, but fun for my kiddies. All in all a great shopping trip. Couponing has become a habit for me and that way I am able to save and still buy the things I want and need.
When you take a little time each day (1/2 hour of less to review blogs for me) and a little time to plan trips (about 1 hour for Albertsons trip and 15-30 minutes for Rite Aid for me) you can save 50% or more. Which if you think about it is a pretty good habit to have. It is also a habit that gets easier with time. Don't give up, I can't believe all that I have learned in a year and am still learning.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Rite Aid 11/22-11/28

Good news: Rite Aid is staring their Gift of Savings promotion. It is just like the one they did a couple of months ago. Every purchase is counted toward the earning of a gift card, up to $20. You have to purchase $100, but this is before all coupons and rebates, so it is easy to get there. Plus, this time of year, if you need anything, buy it at Rite Aid. If you are signed up for Single Check Rebate, you are already registered.

Bad News: The only things free things are Benevia Enhanced Fruit Drink, Dulcolax, and Day/Night Colon Cleanse...will be passing on those thanks. Is Rite Aid trying to tell us something?

Good News: Black Friday (Thursday-Saturday) is looking great! Lots of SCRs those three days.
i heart rite aid has the ad, if you want to check it out. Lots of cheapies and freebies (will have matchups soon) Including cheap baby wipes, hurrah!

Bad News: Where does Rite Aid fit in my Black Friday schedule?

Good News: Albertsons doubles good through Thursday!!

Bad News: Decisions on how to use them wisely...check out the coupon project for some great ideas.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Food for thought Friday

My husband is always laughing at me for going through boxes and packaging before it gets thrown out. Packages are a great source for coupons, so always check the inside of a box. You might also have sweepstakes codes inside. But the best part is Box Tops! Do you Box Top? It is a program for schools. Each box top is worth 10 cents for you child's school. Most schools are on this program now and offer neat incentives for the students that bring them in. Keep your eyes open and don't let them go to waste. They are on a huge variety of products including, General Mills, Betty Crocker, and Kimberly Clark just to name a few. A lot of the products that go on promotions are on them too. Even if your child is not in school yet, donate them to someone who is or save them for when your child is. I love helping schools with products I buy everyday. So next time don't through that box away, check for coupons, sweeps, and box tops!! Also check out as a great resources list of coupons on these products.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Confession: Team Edward

Okay, true confession time, I am going to the midnight showing of New Moon. Yes, I know, please don't judge, you know we all love a little Edward (or Jacob) :)

BUT did you know you can win Edward's Car? Volvo is giving away a car like Edwards. It is a tricky contest, that runs in six phases. The phases are games/questions that increase in difficulty. (It takes awhile to play, but it is fun!) The first five are out and you can complete them now(google for help if you need it). The sixth phase is released at 12:59 pm EST on Sunday. I am figuring it is something totally obscure from the movie, since the first person to complete it wins the car! Go to this link for all the details, have fun, and good luck!

Q & A

I got a question from a reader:

How do I know how long a catalina lasts?

Tricky question because the answer is, it depends. If a catalina is in an ad, it runs the length of the sale (like Sun-Sat or Wed-Tues). It might go over a few days, but don't count on it. The ad won't back you up if you don't get it either. However, there are unadvertised catalinas, as in they aren't in the ad, they are by word of mouth or those catalina printouts that tell you about them. The krazy coupon lady has compiled a good list of Albertson's current cat deals. Also, there is one for free butter here. In addition, I have gotten (for Albertson's):

*Solo, plates, cups, or bowls, purchase 2 get $1, 3 get $3, 4 or more get $4 (11/12-12/5)
*Free diaper clutch (via mail) when you buy Pampers Big Pack (11/4-12/8)
*Buy $10 in participating Duncan Hines/Vlasic/Log Cabin get $2 cat (11/1-11/30)

The problem with these unadvertised catalinas is that you don't have an ad to back you up if it doesn't work. There might be signs by the product, but usually not. These promos also have varying dates, so it makes it difficult to keep track. One more thing to remember, catalina is a company and not an extended feature of the store. The cashier have little to no control over what is prints out. Sometimes on big promos they might have an override code, but probably only towards the end of the sale. To learn more about the catalina company check out their website:

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Store Secrets: letter/emails

Have you ever tried writing letters or these days emails to companies? I recently wrote to Kimberly Clark (Huggies) because my big box of diapers didn't have the advertised $25 coupon book in it and guess what a week later I got lots and lots of coupons in the mail. Also, my kids recently got a Lincoln Logs set with a broken piece. I emailed the company and a couple of weeks later got the replacement right in my mailbox. It works!

I have read a couple of posts recently about writing emails to companies that have products you love to get coupons. I really haven't tried this, but after this list I might. Read the post here and tell me what you think.

coupon email list

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Deals of the week!

Lots of good buys on Turkey day dinner stuff, including:
*turkey, (23 cents/lb when you have an additional $25 purchase)
*potatoes (88 cent/bag, first 2)
*butter ($1.69)
*Kraft cheese ($1.88), use with $1/2 RP 11/15
* Minute Maid orange juice ($1.99)
Thanksgiving basics: Albertsons broth, Jiffy corn muffin mix, Campbell's Gravy (here), Del Monte Vegetables (use 11/15 RP, $1.00/8), all 47 cents each.

57 cents each:Albertsons Cream of Chicken or Cream of Mushroom Soup, Albertsons Cranberry Sauce

87 cents each: Bird's Eye Steamfresh Vegetables or Rice (.35 from 10/18 SS), Stove Top Stuffing ($2/5 on, Albertsons Whipped Topping, Albertsons Olives.

97 cents each: Albertsons sour cream, Albertsons Graham Cracker Crust, Libby's Pumpkin, Princella Sweet Potatoes, Cool Whip, and Carnation Evaporated Milk (.50/2 from 9/27 SS).

Store coupons:
*Kraft Cream Cheese 88 cents, stack with manu in 11/15 RP
*Kraft Mayo or Miracle Whip, $1.99, Limit 1, stack with coupon from Kraft Food and Family mag if you have it.
*Gillettte Foamy Shave Gel, 79 cents

Promo: Buy 4 Kellogg's cereals (Frosted Flakes, Rice Krispies, Froot Loops, Apple Jacks, Corn Pops, Cocoa Krispies, or Jumbo Krispies) and get free milk instantly and two free cereal bowls. Coupon link here. More matchups at a thrifty mom.

So Utah readers, I am curious, how is Fresh Market? Did you keep your card to hit the few remaining Albertsons?

Also the spend $150 get a free turkey is still valid at Fred Meyer, if you need to plan a whole dinner. Anything in the store pretty much counts, including clothing and Christmas presents and decorations etc...

Monday, November 16, 2009

Step #10: share

Now you have learned how to coupon, what should you do now? Share with others. There are several ways to share. Tell your friends and neighbors about a hot promo, share your purchases with others, and share your expertise. I wish someone who knew had told me about Rite Aid like 5 years ago. I also wish someone had explain catalinas to me. Let others know, no one should have to pay retail :)

So in the spirit of sharing...Spend $25 on Proctor and Gamble products get a free cookware set via mail. Here is the rebate form and the PYP forum discussing it is here. You only have until Saturday to make your purchases. Don't run out to buy stuff just to get this, but if you need stuff anyway (like Pampers diapers) it's an extra bonus. (Thanks Ami)

Some freebies: Go over to being girl for a generous sampling of Tampax/Always products. Plus get a coupon for a free pack of Always Infinity. I got this last week.

Go to beechnut, fill out the form and get a free cereal coupon and free 2 jars of baby food coupon via mail. I just got mine today.

And Tomorrow and Wednesday is a MACY'S ONE DAY SALE and it is advertised as the biggest one day sale of the year! Best of all there is a coupon for $10 off a $25 purchase. Almost everything is included, even the clearance rack. The coupon is good from store opening until 1 PM each day. Go to and click on the stores link, enter your zip code, and then check out the catalog for your area. Mine was over 60 pages! I am thinking Christmas dresses and coats for my kids. Oh, how I heart Macys!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Rite Aid 11/15-11/21

Rite Aid has some freebies this week. has the $5/25 or $3/15 depending on your zip code. You can also check out the video values ads to earn a $5/20 coupon and others. My fav five star Rite Aid cashier also told me that sometimes surveys pop up on that only take a few minutes to fill out and then you can earn a $5 gift card. Be on the lookout for those!

*Crest Extra White Plus Scope Toothpaste $2.69, SCR for $2.69, Use the $0.75/1 from PG 11/1, money maker of $.75

*GE Energy Smart Light Bulbs $2.00 each, $2 SCR when you buy 2, Use the $1/1 from SS 10/4

*Renuzit Adjustable Air Freshener $0.99, $1 SCR when you buy 2, Use B1G1 coupon on

*Kotex $2.99, $2 SCR, use $1 coupon from Oct. All You

*Tic Tac Chill $1.00, Use the $1/1 from RP 9/20

*Robitussin To Go 10 ct. $6.99, $4 SCR, $2.00 coupon available here

Check out all the matchups at my frugal adventures.

The Red Plum today also had some Ragu and Skippy coupons that can be stacked with the store Albertsons coupouns (also in the paper) to get really cheap Ragu and Skippy. Don't forget to get your pie and ice cream through Tuesday, unfortunately the catalina deal is dead, but you can still score 2 pies and 2 ice creams for $6.39 (or less is you have coupons). Get a rain check if your store is out and they will honor the deal for up to a month.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Friday Food for Thought

Here is my take on what managers really think of couponers. Of course, just like cashiers there are several levels of couponers. I certainly hope you are a 5 star couponer by now. 5 star couponers are polite, friendly, informed, and stand up for themselves. They don't try to get away with anything though and they don't go ballistic over the refusal of a .50 coupon. So I think if you are a five star couponer...the managers actually like you. Why? Because you come in to the store regularly, so you spend money. They also know that you talk out in the community, whether it is via conversation, blogs, or emails, good deals are shared. So is bad (or good) customer service. Coupons are very "trendy" right now, mostly because of the economy. Good managers know that lots of their customers are going to coupon, so if they don't choose to coupon in their store, they will probably go somewhere else to shop.

I actually dated a grocery manager in a previous life...(he wasn't a manager then) and now through the magic of Facebook, we still chat occasionally. I asked him about this and he said, that yes coupons are a pain, (to redeem) but he also said that he is impressed when a shopper takes time to plan out a shopping trip. I am sure this is how most managers feel. Do you agree with me? Are you a 5 star couponer?

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Reader's Deals

I got some great deals from readers. Audrey said, "If you buy 3 "sets" of the pie and ice cream the catalina will give you $15. The Albertson's checker and manager went over my receipt this morning to find out what triggered it." The Breyer's ice cream is part of the buy $30 get $15 catalina promotion running through today. I tried this today and it did not work for me. I am emailing catalina to see why, but you might have better luck.

Heidi sent a link to a $10 coupon for the UP DVD here. Several stores have this priced around $19.99. I saw one today that also had a rebate sticker for a free plush toy (via mail) with purchase. There are also two rebates out ronzoni pasta for $4 with purchase of pasta and DVD or bird's eye $5 rebate with two Viola meals and DVD purchase. If you want an even more advanced and cheaper deal, check out cheaper by the dozen. There is also a Target coupon you can stack with the $10 coupon. Keep your eyes peeled this time of year there will be rebates on movies with products. Last year I got one for Shrek the Halls and the Tinkerbell movie.

Thanks, Audrey and Heidi. If you find a good deal you would like to share, please email me at dealsbydawn at yahoo dot com.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Store Secrets: Walmart (dot com)

Anybody that knows me well, knows I do not shop at WalMart very often. I don't like how crowded the store is and it is a huge spending trap. Yes, a bunch of "cheap" stuff still equals a lot! I do however love One of the best features is their FREE SAMPLES. They always have several different ones available. They also rotate them frequently and often the samples come with high value coupons. Right now in fact, there are samples of both Huggies and Pampers available, also Garnier and Prilosec. Click here now to check them out. Be sure to check back often for new freebies too.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Deals of the week!!

Just picked up my Tuesday paper and besides some great deals at Albertsons next week, there are tons of great deals tomorrow, Veterans Day!! Some Fred Meyer coupons caught my eye,
*Save $5 on any pair of shoes $14.99 and up
*Save $5 on any apparel $14.99 and up
*Take an Extra 15% off apparel, shoes & accessories, no limit and may be combined with above two coupons. These are good only from 7 AM-1PM. You should be able to get these coupons in store at customer service.
*Also at Fred Meyer spend $150 (on most anything, some exclusions) get a free turkey with coupon. This coupon is actually in the paper, not an insert. $150 is a lot to spend, especially now that you are a coupon diva, but if you are hosting Thanksgiving or needing to really stock up, there is an extra incentive for you. Offer good through Saturday.

*Macys also has a 15% off coupon here to go with their sale through tomorrow.

*JC Penney-pick up an extra savings card at any register to reveal your discount, either an extra 15, 20, or 30% off. Offer good through Saturday.

*Albertsons, good until next Tuesday. The loss leader of the year...Buy one Sara Lee Pie ($6.39) and get another Sara Lee Pie AND 2 Breyers Ice Creams FREE!! But, it gets better...there are coupons for both items and since you are "buying" four items, you can use four manufacturers coupons. (sidebar) has the Sara Lee coupon, and 10/18 RP has the 0.75 off Breyers. Go early to get the good kinds of pie and ice cream. They will go of all there is NO LIMIT! (Don't go crazy though...) I am assuming that means they are well stocked, but you never know. Last year I ended up with pumpkin and vanilla, good but not my first choice of flavors. :)
Please check out a thrifty mom and the krazy coupon lady for all the coupon links. There are some good Albertsons coupons to stack with manufacturers coupons.

No, I am not hitting all these deals and no I am not shopping all day tomorrow. :) I plan on going to the parade and honoring our veterans. Happy Veteran's Day!

Rolling the cat

I wanted to try at least one more time to see if I could get my cat to roll, and it worked! The breakdown: 4 cookie mixes, 4 potatoes, 1 soap, 2 yogurts, 2 soup mixes, 6 pasta/rice mixes, and two cake mixes. The total was $30.89 I had 7.20 in coupons, then used my $15 in catalinas, so my total was $8.69, but I used my $15 cash from my "faux" catalina. All three transactions spent $52.14, but I still have $15 in catalinas and $6.31 left over in cash from the promotion. All in all, pretty great for all the stuff we got.

A few things to remember with catalina deals or promotions:
1)Make sure you have the right product! There are usually several sizes, but only one is the correct one. Also other brands, especially store brands are made to look like name brands and placed right next to each other, so make sure you have the right brand. There should (but not always) be tags advertising the promotion by the participating products so look for these.
2) Double, triple check before you get to the register that you have all the products and that your total adds up to the right amount.
3) Make sure you get the desired results, after your receipt prints, the catalina will print, watch for the flashing green light and the beep. Cashier tend to hurry through this, so make sure you get them. If not, let someone know. You can also call catalina at 1-888-8COUPON if your transaction didn't go right.
4)Keep trying, these promotions can be lots of fun and great ways to stock your pantry.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Step # 9: Rebates

I love earning rebates, especially high value ones and those at Rite Aid. Rite Aid rebates are all done online, so it makes it easy. Read here for more info Most other rebates however, have to be done through the mail. It is a good idea to do these as soon as you get home from the store. That way it is fresh on your mind and you have the receipt and UPC codes in front of you. Most rebates require the original receipt. If you have two products that have mail in rebates, ask the cashier to print out a duplicate receipt for you. If you are doing a mail in rebate from a product bought at Rite Aid, make sure you enter you info in the computer before you send off the receipt. It is also a good idea to make copies, keep a contact number/email, and keep a record when you sent it off, in case you have a problem. Most of these totals are before coupons, so it you combine them with sales, promos, and coupons, they become money makers!

Some rebates to look out for right now:

SC Johnson Buy 3 products get $5 back.
Real Simple Buy $15 worth of participating products get $5 back
Johnsons Rubber Ducky water tester with $7 product purchase
Try me free peelie offer on Gerber Yogurt Blend
Pampers diaper clutch, free with Pampers Big Box purchase at Albertsons(catalina rebate form will print)

Any other you are working on? I will post any new rebates I find.

Catalina Success!

This is how it is supposed to work, just like I had planned in my last post. The catalinas printed with no problem. My out of pocket was $23.11 and I got $15 back. Tomorrow I am going to "roll" the cat. I am going to do the deal again, use my $15 cats to pay half and then get $15 more back!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Cat, round #2

Okay, got some more coupons and my list...we are going to try this again. Here is what I am going to get: 1 mayo (2.99), 2 Caress soap (4.98), 2 toaster strudels (5.98), 2 Kleenex (1.98), 2 yogurt delights (4.98), 1 broth (1.49), and 4 Cottonelle wipes (7.96). Total of 30.36 I am using 2 $1 toaster strudels, 2 $1 yogurt, 2 0.50 Kleenex, $1 broth, and .50/2 and .75/2 wipes. So my after coupon total is $23.11 and I should get back $15 in cat coupons. I am also going to buy a few more things and use my double coupons.

Rite Aid Deals 11/8-11/14

New $5/25 coupon at

*Herbal Essences Hair Care buy one get one free. Use buy one shampoo, get one styler free 10/11 P&G. Also did you get your free Herbal Essences coupon by mail, now would be a good time to use that. Both scenarios get you two free products, do both to get four free products.

*Oral B Crossaction Toothbrush $2.99, SCR for $2.99, use with .75 from 10/11 P&G to make this a money maker.

Good deals:
*GE Reveal Lightbulbs 2/$4, $2 SCR when you buy two, also a $1/1 coupon in 11/1 SS.

*Also Lysol Steam mop on sale for $34.99 with a $5 SCR. Has anyone used this? Is it any good? I am thinking about one, but don't want to waste money if it is not great.

Check out hip 2 save for all the matchups. Not a great week, I am hoping for some deals on baby wipes, trash bags, and dish soap soon.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Friday Food for Thought

This is a question I have been pondering since the beginning of my coupon existence. Do managers like or hate couponers? How do you think they really feel? Please leave a comment and then I will tell you what I think!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Catalina, working out the bugs

So today, I had only one child with me so I decided to do some shopping! I gathered my supplies
Yes, I took all this and my toddler in the store, thankfully she doesn't request car carts yet!

Here is what I got, but...the catalina didn't print :( I asked the cashier, one of my favs, right after I paid and the catalina didn't print anything. She added it up (had to use a calculator because of the prices!) and confirmed I should have got one. So she called the manager over, another one of my favs. She said "the coupons probably mess it up, but they shouldn't have". They didn't have the override code to print out the coupons, (they have to call corporate), so they just gave me $15 cash, which is great....but

I was trying to teach you how to roll a cat. This is why I usually wait until the sale has been going a few day, so all the bugs are worked out and they have the override code. (I live in a "small" town and have only one Albertsons.) However, I did get my "rewards". It is important that you bring it up if your cat doesn't print, because they need to know of problems. One of the managers that came over, is in charge of making sure items are entered right so they trigger the catalina. When you let her know of a problem, she can fix it for the rest of us. I hope it works for you. I am probably going to give it another try on Monday, hopefully there will be doubles this weekend. Has anyone tried the deal? Did it work for you?

*Ironically, I did get two Cottonelle wipe coupons, and two future promo coupons out of the catalina machine. 1) Buy $10 in participating items, get $2 cat (picture shows Duncan Hines, Vlasic, Log Cabin, and Mrs. Butterworth) Runs from 11/1/09-11/30/09 and 2) Free diaper clutch (via mail) with any Pampers Big Pack purchase valid from 11/4/09-12/8/09. Look for $20 in coupon savings in specially marked packages too. Thanks for the info catalina, next time though, I will be expecting my $15 coups!

Safeway/Kohls deal

I don't usually blog about Safeway deals, because I don't usually go there. (It is the most expensive and farthest away for me.) However, frugal living NW has a great post about several overlapping catalinas for this weekend, including earning Kohls cash. I don't have a Kohls near me, but it sounds like a good deal if you do. It is complicated and definitely advanced, but check it out if you are interested.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Catalina round #1

I am going to run down a catalina deal for you, so you can see how it is supposed to work. Even if you aren't in Albies land anymore, follow me on these string of posts, because catalina promos work the same at many stores.

Round #1: Look through ads, your pantry, and coupons to see what you want/need. I looked through my coupon stash and the ad and saw what I had coupons for (or could print easily) and came up with: cookie mix, frosting, potatoes, flushable wipes, toaster strudels, paper towels, Kleenex, salad dressing, soup, brownie mix, yogurt, Chex mix, and pasta sides. I also wanted to get some soup mix, cake mix, bar soap, mayonnaise, and veggies at these prices, even without coupons. I added up what coupons I had and I had enough to do three transactions. This step took longer than I thought because of those crazy uneven prices.
Next I divided them up into three separate transactions. I made a list (you couldn't see anything in the picture I took so I didn't post it, sorry) of each transaction. I wrote the quantity of each item, the amount, and then the total amount. Remember you total is $30 before tax and coupons. Use the prices directly from the ad, don't try to calculate in coupons and the catalina discount. So tomorrow, I am going to do one transaction and buy:

2 Wishbone Dressings (2@1.99) 3.98

2 Progresso Soups (2@1.69) 3.38

2 Viva Paper Towels (2@1.99) 3.98

3 Betty Crocker Frostings (3@1.69) 5.07

7 Cottonelle Tubs or Refills (not sure which size is included by the ad, but we LOVE these. If you have small children learning to potty train, they are a must!!) (7@1.99) 13.93

Total $30.34

Now I will use 2 $.75 dressing, 2 $1.00 soup, 2 $.50 paper towels, 3 $.50 frosting, 2 $1/2 wipes, 1 $.50 wipes, and 1 $.50/2 wipes (again not sure on the sizes, so I might not need to use all these wipe coupons). For a total of $10 in coupons so my new total is $20.34 and I should get back $15 (usually in the form of 3 $5 catalina coupons, which will print out AFTER I pay). So I will need to pay $20.34 for this transaction. I leave the store with the above items and my $15 cat coupons. I am going to do this Thursday AM, so I will post my results and see how it turned out.

Store Secrets: Staples Ink

I love Staples! They often have free or cheap after rebate items. Plus their rewards card, which sends you a rebate coupon on your total purchase amount every quarter. The best part of all though, is their ink cartridge recycling program. Just bring in any empty (I mean any...even that old one from the mid 1990s...) and they will credit your account for $3 each. Sometimes they even run promotions where they credit you for $5 each. My Staples usually lets me turn in 3 cartridges at a time. Then at the end of each quarter, they mail you a coupon check for the amount. I usually use mine to buy what else, more ink! This is a great program, especially since you are using lots of ink to print coupons, right? Now you know another store secret: that was easy :)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Deals of the week

First off, some news about Fresh Market/Albertsons for Utah readers. Pinching your pennies has the details about what stores are actually staying Albertsons and what you can score with your Albertsons card.

Second, there are some good produce coupons on the back, so check those out. There are also lots of deals on baking supplies, mostly Albertsons brand. I suspect these will go lower or similar sales will last on these throughout the month. A couple of quick mini promos too. Buy a Whole Cure 81 ham, get a free Honeysuckle white turkey breast. Also, Idaho potatoes 5 lbs bags are .75, with a .75 coupon available on Gourmet Crispy Onions (not exactly sure what that is, but possibly free potatoes).

Last, there is a catalina promo this week! (If you are confused already, please read this.) Yeah, I am very excited, since these deals have become my favorites. We are going to walk through this one together, to learn a little bit more about catalinas. So first off, it is mainly General Mills products and for some reason they are priced weird, so it makes the math a little complicated. You are not going to hit $30 exactly, but try to get as close as possible to make the best deal. This is how it works, spend $30 get $15 catalina coupon for your next trip. This total is before tax and before coupons. Then you can roll the $15 catalina on another transaction to earn another $15 catalina, repeat, repeat, etc...etc... You do have to divide these up though. You can't spend $60 at once and get $30 back, it will only give you $15. Let's look at matchups first the krazy coupon lady and a thrifty mom. (I am not just going to cut and paste these bloggers click on over to check out there great lists!)
Look through your stash and head over to and print out Betty Crocker frosting, potatoes, Pillsbury crescents, Kleenex tissues, Progresso soup,Chex mix, Cheerios, Betty Crocker Cookie Mix, Progresso Broth, and Yoplait Delights. Remember these coupons have a set number of prints before they are gone, so print early. There are lots of printables available at the links above too.

**Homework: go through your pantry and your coupons and decide what you need or want. On Thursday, we will work through some possible scenarios. It should be fun to figure this out together!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Step #8: Balancing the Stockpile

If you have been doing this awhile you have seen those videos/pictures with huge stockpiles that make most KMarts jealous. Which brings up the whole ethical issue with me, how much is too much? (On my soapbox now...)

Several wise men in my church and our FEMA program have stated that we need a "years supply" of food and personal items. That is my guideline. I try to have what I think we could and would use within a year. More than that is extravagant and wasteful for me. I mean are 87 toothbrushes really going to come in handy if there is a catastrophe? Would it be more helpful to have say 25 cans of tuna? Am I really going to eat 10 cans of vegetables before they expire(yes), but 100 probably not. Is this instant food healthy or just cheap and convenient, would it make more sense to buy fresh ingredients and make a casserole? Once you really get started into couponing, the deals are aplenty. What separates a good couponer from an excellent one (in my opinion) is learning when to say when. This has been a huge challenge for me, but I am getting better. I think I have found my own personal balance.

So here is my stockpile, I don't think it is huge, but manageable. I also recently had my "cupboard month", which I will talk about later. Basically we mostly make meals out of the cupboard to try and use up some food so it doesn't expire.

My kitchen pantry. The soup is from case lots sale last winter. The bottom boxes are tuna that my husband caught and had canned. I also have baking supplies on the other side, but it is mostly in bulk and not that exciting. Most everything else was bought here and there in reasonable quantities.
My bathroom stockpile. I am good with shampoo/conditioner/lotion/etc... we have a large supply. A lot of this I bought when I first started, before I realized how quick cheap shampoo multiplies. :)

Diapers. These are mostly in the next two sizes up, but I am mostly stocked up on these too. I think after I earn my free coupon from Rite Aid, I am good for about a year. By the way, these were all bought a pack at a time.

One of my favorite quotes is "Happiness is a place between too little and too much" (Finnish proverb). This is how I try to live my life, but also how I try to coupon. You know those "hoarding" shows, look in the background and you will see lots of full "deal" bags and coupons waiting to be clipped on the counter. Sad, but true most of these so called hoarders are "excellent" deal finders, but not so much "excellent coupon balancers." Okay, sorry for the tirade just sharing what I think. I hope it will give you some inspiration to find your balance: :)

Want to read more the coupon project has a great post on this subject.