Saving Money with a plan and your eyes

I was grocery shopping yesterday and here is what I observed-

2 women were shopping for what I assume is going to be a large family Easter dinner.  
They did not have a basket.  
They did not have a list. 
They did not have coupons(..GASP) 
They were not sure of what they were cooking. 
They did not pay attention.  
They continued picking up items,  walking down the aisle then turn back and  say the item was too much and put it back.
But they DID seem to follow me down every aisle and talk loud enough for the whole store to hear.

Some money saving strategies every shopper can use

*First take 10-15 minutes a week to read your local flyers.  If you don't receive flyers most can be viewed on-line.

*Make a list.  I have a sheet of paper divided up into 1/4's.  I put a store name at the top of each 1/4 page and list what items I want and the price.  I usually shop at 3 stores, luckily they are within 3 minutes of each other.  The spare 1/4 is for things I am out of like bread, milk ect and can be picked up the store with the best price.

*Tape.  I use to always misplace my list.  Did I set it down in the cooler when I got the eggs?  If you put a piece of masking tape at the top of your list you can tape it to the handle of your buggy.

*Use your eyes.  Scan the shelves for coupons/clearance items.  Even if you are not purchasing the item today grab a couple coupons for future use.

*Plan your meals for the week.  Once you scan the flyers and take a look around in your kitchen plan what you are going to eat.  It doesn't take long and you won't have to hear the dreaded "mom what's for supper, I'm starving", and have no idea.  I know sometimes things pop up unexpectedly so keeping a frozen pizza or casserole on stand by is highly recommended ;o)

*Get your coupons organized.  I have a large cheque sized file folder.  I got it Dollarama for $1.  I like it better then the one I paid $8 for at WalMart.  Label the sections so you can find coupons easily. Sections I have are grocery, frozen food, paper products/beverages, personal care, cleaning and other for items like dog food and gum.

*Now that your coupons are organized you should take about 10 minutes a month and quickly go through them for expired ones.  It will also remind you of what you have.

*Did you ever trade hockey card when you were a kid?  Try trading coupons.  I do coupon trading on a couple money saving forums and with family/friends.

*Enjoy the savings!

And those 2 women at the grocery store-  They grabbed a brand name can of beans for bean salad and said $1.29 a can was a really good price. I stood beside them and grabbed the store brand of beans for $0.79 and the $0.20 coupon on the shelf.  Now, $0.59 is a good price.  I did not say anything to them but I could feel them watching me.  I just smiled and proceeded down the aisle.  I could hear the rip of the coupon and turned back to see them grabbing the store brand beans.

50% off Please Mum Swimwear collection



Breadcrumbs are how much??

Lean ground beef is on sale @ Metro for $1.99/lb. So away I went and purchased a couple of the large family sized packs of meat totaling about 10lbs. On the menu-

2 meatloaves (3lb). My kids and DH love meatloaf! We will get 2 dinners and 2 days worth of lunches for 4 people (meatloaf sandwiches) from this.

4lb of meatballs. A kid fave around here! I will make 2 lbs of Italian style meatballs and 2lbs of porcupine meatballs with Diana BBQ sauce. (4 meals total)

3lb "taco meat" I fry it up with onion, garlic, chili powder, cumin, oregano, finely chopped celery, carrots and peppers. Once cooked, I will divide it up into 4 freezer containers and use it for tacos, chili or a casserole. Super handy to have on hand, especially on a busy day!

Things I will not pay for

Pre packaged Mexican seasonings. These are usually $2 a package and I find are way too salty. Purchase your spices at a bulk food store and you can season your taco meat to suit your taste.

Bread crumbs Last night I noticed the grocery store wanted $2.49 for plain no name breadcrumbs!! We usually don't eat the heel of a loaf of bread(first and last slice) I either toast them a few times to dry them out or leave the slices on a cooling rack on the counter over night. The next day a whiz them up in my food processor and voila, breadcrumbs. I then store them in a container in the freezer. If you want seasoned crumbs you can add garlic, parmesan, salt, pepper and garlic powder.


Free Zantac March 23rd!

LivingWell sample of the week. It will be up sometime tomorrow.  Lately the site has been updating in the late afternoon. Click HERE to get yours on March 23rd!


Great Deals for the week

Chunky Soup 540ml $1.67 (check for Buy 2 get 1 FREE Coupons)
Royale Toilet Paper 12DR or 24 Reg rolls $4.48 (use $1 coupon from gocoupons.ca)
Ziploc bags (assorted kinds)$2.97 use the following coupon to buy 1 and get 1 free

 $3 ziploc coupon

Play Dough buy 1 get 1 free
Assorted toys buy 1 get 1 1/2 price
Card games buy 1 get 1 free
Green Works cleaner by clorox 2/$5 ($1 coupon on couponclick.ca)
Herbashine Haircolour $8.49 ($2 coupon from Zehrs)
Natural Instincts haircolour $6.99

Mott's applesauces (6's) $2 (I have buy 2 save $1 coupons)
Sunlight Laundry $4 ($1& $2 coupons on save.ca)http://www.save.ca/sunlight_en/coupons
Cling Wrap 30m $1 (I have 0.75 coupons)
Sensodyne $3 (0.75 coupon on Save.ca)
Old Spice Deodorant $3 (I have buy 2 save $3 coupons PLUS Zehr's had in store coupons for getting a new style Old Spice body wash with the purchase of any old spice product, I hope they are not expired. Check the coupon board when you come into the store or down the deo or body wash row. Potentially you could get 2 deodorants and 2 body washes for $3)

Deal Rave
A couple of weeks ago when old spice deodorants were on sale at Zehr's for $1.64 I purchased 4 and had 2 buy 2 save $3 coupons. I then used 4 coupons for the buy any old spice product and get a body wash free. Grand total for 4 deodorants and 4 body wash $0.28!!!! The Fusion power razor was on sale for $6.99. I had a $4 coupon and a coupon for a free Gillette body wash when you purchase a Fusion razor!


Welcome new Friday Follows!

 Welcome Friday Follows!!!!!!! See my post from yesterday for a Starbucks Coupon for a free pastry with handcrafted coffee purchase and a coupon for 30% off @ Old Navy B. Republic and The Gap!
Great Contest from Royale! You can enter daily and win $13,000 towards reno costs and a Caribbean Cruise.  Weekly prizes of a luxury bath collection!  Click HERE to enter!

royale reno-cation_contest


Free Starbucks Pastry!

Lots of great deals in my in box today!
Free Pastry @ Starbucks with a handcrafted coffee purchase March 23rd(ends at 10:30 A.M.)  Click HERE for your coupon.
The Gap, Banana Republic and Old Navy 30% off during the  Friends & Family event from March 18th to March 21st. (thanks Heather ;o)

Home Depot Deals- 20% off selected furniture and the following carpet deal March 18th -28th
Rona Exclusive Coupons March 17th-23rd Click HERE (PDF)


Money Saving Tip for today

Let's talk laundry.  I usually make my own laundry soap for my HE washing machine.  See here for my recipe.  But I received a full size bottle of Sunlight 2X concentrated(green clean)  and purchased a few other bottles from mail in rebates and in store specials.(try me free and buy 1 get 1 free).  See Save.ca for a $1 coupon.sunlight laundry soap
I recently had my 4-/2yr old LG HE washing machine repaired.  It needed a new pump as it would not drain.  Both Appliance Technicians that came told me the same thing.  Never, Never, Never use more then 1 tablespoon of the 2X or 3X concentrated liquid soap EVER because it is so concentrated and seems to not rinse out totally and gums up the pump which eventually does it in.

Being frugal, I never use the specified amount on the bottle. My washer has a very large capacity.  I usually use the cap on the soap bottle to measure.  I fill the soap between the bottom of the cup and the line for the smallest load and my clothes come out perfectly.  If they are really dirty I may add just a bit more but never up to the line on the cap for the smallest load.  Guess what,  it's more then 1 tbsp.  Maybe I killed my washing machine!
What's the deal with fabric softener?  I hate hard clothes and towels but I don't like paying for fabric softener.  I only purchase fabric softener when it is on sale and I have a coupon.  Gain sometimes goes on sale for $3.99 combine that with $1 coupons and you've got a great deal!  You can usually find coupons in coupon flyers from your local paper or from Save.ca and Websaver.ca.  I go through maybe 2 bottles of the 55-60 load containers of fabric softener a year and I do on average 7-8 loads of laundry a week.  

A fabric softener alternative would be to add 1/2 cup of white vinegar to your rinse cycle.  (Never use with a bleach load though)  If you only do 1 rinse then you could put the vinegar in a Downey ball.
Fabric softener sheets.  I hate static.  Despite using fabric softener(or vinegar) sometimes in Winter static is all around us.  What do I do?  I purcahse dryer sheets only on sale and with a coupon.  It is usually a better deal to purchase two smaller boxes(40's) and use 2 $1 off coupons then to purchase a larger box (80's or 120's)with one coupon.  Do the math!  I go through about 100 dryer sheets in a year, using them mainly in winter and loads of sweaters and towels.  Guess what?  I use 1/2 a sheet and it takes care of the static.

Try out my tips with your next load of laundry and let me know what you think!



FREE Ocean Spray Shopping bag and COUPON!

In a magazine I just received in the mail was a little coupon booklet and on the cover was this great find!  If you click on promotions there is also a $1 off Ocean Spray juice.


Olay FREE Samples and Coupons

$2 coupon for Olay Total effects Body Wash, $6 for Olay Pro X and buy 2 Regenerist and get a Regenerist Cleanser FREE!
Brandsampler.ca will have new goodies to give away this spring so sign up now! http://www.brandsampler.ca/en_CA/home.php


Pizza deal with FREE movie passes

free movie passes Pizza Pizza Deal

I received this email last night from Pizza Pizza. You can get the above deal with 2 medium pizzas for $18.99 or 2 large pizzas for $23.99. We usually order pizza twice a year and now looks like a great time to order! (You can register at pizza pizza on-line to receive emails from them)
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Free Mcdonald's coffee March 1-14

Free McDonald's Coffee

I was driving by my local McDonald's yesterday and noticed this sign outside! 1 free small coffee per customer. 
The great thing is that it is all day not just breakfast hours! If you haven't tried McDonald's coffee give it a try, it's FREE! I personally like it much better then Tim Horton's.

Update- No purchase necessary.I have ordered 3 times and each time they ask which size I would like.  Free Large coffee for me!!

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