Thursday, April 30, 2009

Deal Seeking Mom

Head on over to Deal Seeking Mom to check out the launch of the new forum and to register for a chance to win a pair of Crocs. Deal Seeking Mom has started the forum in hopes that it will be a a community where you can share information on deals, freebies and money saving tips as well as build friendships.

Deal Seeking Mom

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

How sad

How sad is it that the highlight of my day is opening the paper to find that Harris Teeter is having triple coupons again all week long?

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Can you see me

We seem to have a ghost living in our house

He is particularly fond of Spongebob Squarepants and snack foods.

We don't ever see him, we just know he's here because we find the television on with no one watching and wrappers from snacks hidden under the ottoman.

Maybe you have one of these ghosts in your house too?

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Saving Big at CVS

I love CVS. They have great sales plus they have these things called Extra Bucks. You earn them for buying certain products and then on your next visit you can use them. I have been shopping CVS but until a couple of months ago I wasn't really trying to cash in on the savings.

Two weeks ago I went to CVS and got $76 worth of product for $24 plus I got almost $20 in extra bucks. This week I went to the store with only a few items on my list. Here's what I got:

Notice the Reese's have been opened. I promised Harrison this special treat. He couldn't wait to eat one and once they were opened everyone else wanted one.

Here's what I my items cost:

Lady Speed Stick $2/6
Claritin $9.99
Crest Toothpaste $1.99 each
Reeses $1.50
Sleep pants $9.99
Total: $31.46

I used these coupons:

$.50 off Crest
$.75 off Crest
$7.00 off Claritin
$4 off an $20 order

I had $23.98 in Extra Bucks so the total cost of my order was FREE! And I got $7 back in Extra Bucks. I also had $12 in Extra Bucks left over so my next visit I will have $19 to spend.

Tomorrow is Sunday and you know what that means. New sales for CVS. Yes, I know that's sad.

I am not the only one with a passion for CVS. If you want to follow The Centsible Sawyer, you'll find more good deals and a whole bunch of CVS Superstars.

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Blind man

I haven't been really good about posting lately. I have just been so busy that at the end of the day, I am totally wiped and my brain isn't functioning enough to write anything. Last Sunday, David got sick and spent the entire day in the bed. Monday when I was at work, he called and told me that his eye was bothering him and he needed a ride to the eye doctor. Without his contacts he is legally blind so needless to say he didn't want to drive. Come to find out he had ulcers on his cornea. Since he couldn't wear his contacts we had to order him glasses but they wouldn't be in until Tuesday. Monday night I watched television and David listened. I tried to give him a blow by blow of the show but I don't think he was amused.

On Tuesday he was going stir crazy so I took him along with me to Costco. As we entered the store, his phone rang so I pointed inside to let him know that I was going inside. I went and filled out the membership form, had my picture taken and my card done and still, no David. I was wondering what in the world he could be doing for so long so I walked back outside and there he sat staring at his hand. I forgot that he couldn't see 5 feet in front of him and he had no way of finding me so he had just sat down. He tried to call my cell phone but I had left it in the car. When we were in the store, I made him hold onto the buggy so he wouldn't get lost. It was kind of like leading around a blind guy.

Thankfully he got glasses on Tuesday and was able to drive himself around. It took me a few days to get use to his new look but I have to say he looks rather nice in glasses. He isn't so thrilled with the glasses and I think he is glad that he can wear contacts again on Monday.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Honest to goodness useful Earth Friendly Tips

In our household, we have been taking steps for quite awhile now to be more earth friendly. Since today is Earth Day I thought I would share some "Earth friendly" tips that I came across and that you might be able to use.
  1. Use water and white vinegar to wash your vegetables and produce. A few squirts will get rid of the nasty stuff (like pesticide residue) that you don't want. Not buying store-bought washes means that you don't have to recycle the bottles they come in (not to mention the energy and materials needed to make and ship them in the first place). Of course, you'll still need to buy bottles of vinegar, but you'll buy fewer of them. Mix water to white vinegar 3:1 in a spray bottle (if you've already got a bottle of the premade stuff, use it up and reuse the sprayer). Rinse with water after you spray.
  2. Try the Eco-friendly equivalent of your regular cleaner and reduce the amount of toxic chemicals released into our waterways. Here's a list of a few you might try on the Ideal Bite website. For more information on the hazards of chemicals in cleaners and make your own alternatives, check out the Worldwatch Institute website.
  3. Install compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) when your older incandescent bulbs burn out. Buy household items, like detergent and cleaning supplies, in concentrated forms so that you get more product per package.
  4. Unplug appliances when you're not using them. Or, use a "smart" power strip that senses when appliances are off and cuts "phantom" or "vampire" energy use.
  5. Make sure you have a faucet aerator on each faucet. These inexpensive appliances conserve heat and water, while keeping water pressure high.
  6. Use a water filter to purify tap water instead of buying bottled water. Not only is bottled water expensive, but it generates large amounts of container waste. I recently purchased a PUR water pitcher dispenses flavoring into the filtered water and now even my kids come in and grab a glass of water.
  7. Borrow from libraries instead of buying personal books and movies. This saves money, not to mention the ink and paper that goes into printing new books.
  8. Buy your produce locally. Not only are you supporting your local farmers but reducing the gas emissions that are produced by the trucks who haul these. We joined a CSA this year and it has been a wonderful experience. Not only are we trying vegetables that we might never have tried, we are helping support our local farmers.
  9. Use reusable containers rather than plastic bags to pack lunches and store foods. Also try reusable sandwich wraps such as those by Kids Konserve.
  10. Take reusable bags with you to the store rather than using plastic or paper. The bags from Envirosax are not only Eco-friendly but Tres Chic.
  11. And perhaps the most obvious (so why doesn't everyone do it?) is to RECYCLE. The average person creates 4.5 pounds of trash per day. Think how much is going into the landfills if you are not re-cycling. For more information on recycling check out

Happy Earth Day!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Just goes to show......

I think that in this day and age we have all become a bit too judgemental. Sadly, I don't think that there are very many people out there who can claim they have never passed judgement on a person just from the way that they looked. This is what an entire audience did to Susan Boyle when she walked out on the stage of Britain's Got Talent last week.

AS she walked onto the stage, appearing a bit unpolished, the audience did not try to hide their laughter. One of the judges even joined in on the mockery and laughed at her before she began her performance. All of this merely from her appearance.

She seemed a bit flustered at one of the judges questions but when asked what she was going to sing, she was confident as she said "I Dreamed a Dream". Then the music started and what came out of this woman's mouth could be called nothing short of amazing. The audience began to stand and clap for the woman that just moments before had been the object of their criticism.

After her performance one of the judges made the comment that "Everyone was laughing at you. No one is laughing now." She went on to say that this should be a lesson learned. Indeed it should. You can't judge a book by it's cover.

What a shame that it took her 47 years to bless the world with her voice.

(You Tube has disabled embedding of the video so you'll have to click the link below. Please do because you really don't want to miss this).

Susan Boyle sings "I Dream a Dream".

Thursday, April 16, 2009


One evening, while on vacation, we were sitting around the fire when Holden rushes in and says "Dad, Harrison needs to tell you something and it's BAAAAAD!" We all turn to stare as Harrison walks slowly in the door. David asks him what it is and he is silent. The minutes tick by and still he says nothing.

Finally, after further prodding, we find out that Harrison had stolen a corn cob pipe from a gift shop we had visited earlier that day. His initial story was that he "bought" the pipe but after realizing that we knew he didn't have any money he fessed up to the theft.

We were shocked that he would do something like that and to make it even worse by telling a lie. The next day, we hauled him all the way back to the store and made him apologize to the man at the store but not before taking his first (and hopefully last) mugshot:

Notice the shirt that was bought the very same day as the theft.
It says I'm up to no good, want to join me?

Monday, April 13, 2009


Why is it that I always feel like I need another vacation to get over my vacation? I suppose it has something to do with having three children. Or it could have to do with the fact that I cannot sit still for one minute because I always feel like I have to maximize my time - in other words cram as much as humanly possible into a day.

We left on Saturday April 4th to go to Banner Elk for vacation. I rented a beautiful cabin near Grandfather Mountain overlooking a lake. The plan was to go hiking, explore the mountains, be one with the earth kind of thing. After our hikes we were going to take it easy, enjoy the hot tub, play games and hang out with each other.

Sunday was a beautiful day so we packed out lunch and headed over to Grandfather Mountain for a hike. The skies were clear and the weather was just cool enough to make hiking really enjoyable. That was until we were a mile into the hike, halfway up the mountain and I felt like my lungs were going to explode. To make matters worse, my nine year old and six year old were running circles around me, bouncing off the rocks, and generally making me feel like I was an 80 year old woman. But I am proud to say that I made it all the way up the mountain and back down. I was never so glad to see my van though. After having a picnic lunch, we headed on to the Blue Ridge Parkway and down to Linville Falls. The kids were pretty tired by then but were game for hiking to the Falls. The trail was not as strenuous (thank goodness) but still was a good 3 mile round trip. After leaving the Falls we were all wiped out and David suggested we stop at McDonald's for an ice cream. Wouldn't you know the ice cream machine was broke?

On Monday, it was very overcast and cold. The forecast was calling for a 70% chance of snow with an accumulation of 6 inches, a huge change from Sunday's weather. We figured hiking was out so we headed into Boone to look around and hopefully find a sled. We stopped in Mast General Store and let the kids pick some candy from the thousands of kinds available. Afterwards, we were searched for a sled but had no luck finding one until I spotted a Goodwill and suggested we stop there. Lo and behold I found one for $2.50.

Monday afternoon it started sleeting and snowing and by the evening, the snow was really coming down. We had a nice evening in front of the fire watching some television and eating popcorn. When we woke on Tuesday morning, it was still snowing and several inches had already accumulated. The kids went sledding but it was so cold and windy, they didn't stay out for long. Later on that afternoon, they went back out and spent hours riding the sled and playing in the snow. Haley even built a miniature snowman. The snow finally stopped sometime Tuesday night and we ended up with somewhere around 7 inches of snow.

Haley sledding and screaming. She didn't do one without the other.

Harrison sledding down the road.

Holden standing in the snow so I could record how deep it was.

Socks, mittens and shoes drying in front of the fire.

By noon on Wednesday, most of the snow had melted. Although it was still cold and windy, we took advantage of the day and headed over to Moses H. Cone Park. After we left there, we ate some lunch and headed over to Julian Price Park to hike one of the trails there. We chose the shortest trail although it was still a three mile hike up and down some pretty steep hills. Add to that the mushy ground where the snow had melted and you can just imagine how dicey it got at times. But the trail was really pretty because it twisted around in the forest and went over several creeks. I was afraid that one of the kids was going to end up in the water but thankfully we all arrived back at the van without any mishap. Afterwards we went in to Blowing Rock to walk around downtown but unfortunately most of the stores were closed. I don't think I have ever been to a town where the stores are closed on Tuesday-Thursday.

Thursday morning, we headed back home. It was 80 degrees and sunny by the time we reached the city limits. A huge change from our mountain adventure but I think the kids had enough of the cold for awhile.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Save, Save, Save

Last week I did really well with my coupon savings. Harris Teeter (our local grocery store) had TRIPLE coupons all week. Unfortunately there was a limit of 20 coupons per day. Fortunately one trip was all I needed to save BIG. My grocery total was $54.22. My savings was $102.15. Even my husband was impressed, which trust me is a hard thing to do.

To prepare for my trip, I scoured the weekly ad to find the specials. They had quite a few Buy One Get Two Free specials. I took advantage of the trash bags and chicken breasts. The frozen Green Giant veggies were on sale for $1 each. I love these for lunch so I bought 7 of them. There was an automatic $4 rebate when 10 Pillsbury products were purchased so I used my coupons, got triple savings on most of them and on top of that the $4 rebate.

My best savings were:
  • a can of corn that I actually got $.95 back because the coupon value exceeded the cost of the corn
  • a tube of Colgate toothpaste for $.35
  • a package of Magic Erasers for $.50
  • two packs of brown sugar for a total of $.49
  • a roll of Viva paper towels for $.25
  • a bottle of mustard for $.29

So with all my savings, I am off to take a much needed vacation.