Tuesday, May 31

$24 worth of Free goodies

1hour of prep, 2 hours shopping, 3 different stores= $24{not including taxes} worth of FREE groceries!
5 lb. potatoes= $3.19
2 V8 VFusions= $6
Lean pockets= $2
5 Vitamin Waters=$5
Pudding cups=$1
2 Athenos Greek yogurt= $2
Marshmellows= $1.89
Sponges 2 pk= $.98
6 candy bars= $3
Happy Couponing!

Thursday, May 26

My garden~Part I

This is my garden area! This is my first garden here because we moved into our new house June 27th of last year! It was a weedy, ugly, messy dumping station for Ken the past year. Countless yard waste bags, 3 weeks and uncountable hours later I had it all ready! With the help of my in laws :) it was planted last weekend. I still have another row of beans to plant in about 1-2 weeks. This way the 2nd row will come in 2 weeks after my 1st row so I'm not bombarded w beans!

My Garden:
Beans, Spinach, Carrots, Zucchini, Cauliflower, Bell peppers, Jalapenos, Tomatoes, Sage & Basil.
Horrible picture, I know. I'll take more especially as it grows!
This is the back of our detached garage. I planted tomatoes there to give me more room in my fenced in garden!

Tuesday, May 24

White wine/Lemon Chix w Artichokes is the Winner

I got my inspiration for this recipe from All You magazine. I changed it a little bit to suit us better. Kenny absolutely loved this dinner!

Mae enjoyed dinner, especially the bread :)

3-4 chicken breasts, pounded
1/4 c. flour
3 Tbsp EVOO
1 c. white wine (Sutter Home Chardonnay is what I use)
1 can artichokes, chopped
1/2 c. green onions, finely copped
1 clove garlic, smashed
2 tsp. parsley
1/2 lemon, sliced thin

-Preheat EVOO in a large skillet. Season chicken w S&P and dredge in flour. Place into skillet. Cook about 5 minutes (or until browned) then flip and cook another 5 minutes.
-Add the remaining ingredients except lemons. Bring to a low simmer, cover and let cook about 10 minutes.
-Add the lemon slices and let simmer another 3 minutes
-I serve over couscous and asparagus

Monday, May 23

My Mailbox

Look at those awesome coupons! 3 coupons for totally FREE products! I am sooo excited to try the Ore-Ida sweet potato fries. I love getting my mail! {I'm certain you'll see the purchased items in a picture coming soon:)}

A load of Free stuff

I hit up Walgreens on Saturday and here is what I got for FREE=
Adds up to $23.75 before tax of FREE items!

-I used my CAT discount card (I've had for years but never used bc I thought it only worked on prescriptions. This is why I ask cashiers all sorts of questions now!)
-Some items were B1G1
-Iams dog food is after MIR
Happy Couponing!

Friday, May 20

Happy Friday

For those that are also on Facebook- You'll remember something like this on my page there!

He likes his dessert right after dinner- I like to wait a few hours
He leaves the water running while brushing his teeth bc he "likes HOT water" - I turn it off and like ice cold water
He leaves cabinet doors open- Bc it almost gives me a tick---I always close them
He wants to remove another tree from our yard. Going from 4 to 2- I prefer the shade they give
He leaves his clothes on the extra bed, bathroom, floor etc. etc.- Mine go directly into the hamper

He is rational- I tend to get caught up in the hoopla
He is so smart- I'm smart in certain areas, yes, but he is smart in every matter, seriously!
He never quits- uh, I've started and quit college 3 times & still haven't finished- Enough said!
He is a hard worker and the sole provider- I stay home all day w Sweet Pea

But we are also very much alike. Examples being our backgrounds, our love of outdoors, eating habits, Christian beliefs. We are both even tempered, easy going, happy, and content. We are both happy at home on weekends cooking and watching a movie. Ah, but our differences keep us on our toes. Funny how you can be soooo much a like yet so different too! God is oh so GOOD!

From our Yellowstoner trip in '09

Thursday, May 19

Your opinions matter... Kind of...

Am I Ghetto or Green?
Ya see we don't have a good place to install a clothes line. {Even if we did- it would be behind many other things on the To Do list} So I use my fence! I don't line dry any personal items seeing as how we live at a 4 way stop ;)

P.S. Look how great our grass looks!!!! Just 2 months ago it was a muddy muddy mess! Mae and I have been having so much fun in our new yard since the weather has been so beautiful!

Prision Break

Bailey & Mae on the WRONG side of the baby gate!

How did they master this escape?

No, I didn't install it correctly! Still not sure who lead who? Aren't they a cute pair?

Tuesday, May 17

Homemade Veggie Burgers WIN!

I love love love veggie burgers and since marrying me, Ken does too :) These would be great for "Meatless Mondy", which has recently become all the rave! (We eat meatless meals several nights a week though and have for years) These burgers take a little bit of prep work. But after making them a few times the steps get easier and faster. I grilled them this time but they also work great on a panini press!

1 15oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
3 medium carrots, peeled
4 stalks green onions, diced
1 c. chopped mushrooms
1 egg, slightly whisked
1/4 c.bread crumbs
1/4 c. barley, cooked according to pkge directions
1 tsp. EVOO
S & P to taste
1 tsp. Parsley
1/8 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. smoked paprika
1 clove garlic, smashed
4 hamburger buns, toasted
Optional: "Burger Toppings" I used Provolone cheese, lettuce and mustard. Ken topped his w the buffalo chicken dip I served as a side. Haha, so I guess his WASN'T a veggie burger :)
1. In a small skillet over medium heat, sweat the mushrooms. About 7 minutes. Be sure to let cool slightly bc they hot mushrooms could cook the egg. Ewwww
2. Mash black beans. I used my Pampered Chef chopper. They need to be a thick paste like consistency.
3. Shave carrots on a cheese grater, Pampered Chef micro plane or food processor! (Already shaved carrots would be a good idea- But I like fresh large carrots)
4. Cook barley according to package directions. And let cool slightly
5. Once mushrooms and barley are slightly cool -combine all the ingredients (except buns and toppings ;) ) in a medium bowl. Mix until everything is incorparated.
6. Split into 4 sections and then press those into burgers.
7. Place burgers on a generously oiled piece of foil.
8. Grill on medium-low heat, flipping once. Total cook time about 10 minutes. (Mine created a nice brown crust and so when I  flipped them I put them directly on grill and threw the foil away. They didn't stick- but I know Ken has had trouble w them sticking in the past-Just a warning)
9. Spray buns w cooking spray and put on grill for about 3 minutes.
10. Top burgers w cheese, let melt and then place on buns!
11. Top w YOUR favorite toppings and enjoy!

Monday, May 16

All this for FREE!

Did my weekly shopping this morning and here is what I got for FREE! Total would be around $24 but w COUPONS I was able to get it ALL for FREE! I got other great steals too- Happy Couponing!

Friday, May 13

Happy 5th Anniversary!

I've known him since Kindergarten
Dated him since I was 15
And now Married to him for 5 years!
Our story is unique these days but not in our families! High school sweethearts, like both sets of parents! Every morning as he is pulling out of the drive way I thank God for choosing me to be his partner. I am so grateful our hearts were mended to do this journey through life as one. I am so blessed to have a hard working, dedicated and understanding partner!  I know I am the luckiest woman in the world.
Happy 5th Anniversary, Kenneth! I love you so much more everyday!

May 13 2006

Honeymoon in Mexico

Wednesday, May 11

Beautifully, Perfect Creation

Here are a few updated pictures of Miss Mae! She is changing everyday! She is getting so brave, independent and inquisitive! Its so fun watching her grow! She'll be 14 months next week! Not walking yet but taking several steps w/o falling. Still working on a tooth to break through- Its so close! Her favorite drink is still water.....Wouldn't you think warm milk w/ Ovaltine would do the trick?!?!? She is actually better about drinking her milk that way but its still hit or miss.....
Thank you Lord for entrusting me with your most beautifully, perfect creation yet ;)

Mother's Day 2011 (After we changed out of our pretty church clothes)  Ken was at the library studying.
 This was the best I could get!

She always puts rags on her head. She has a great sense of humor :)

She is getting so big! I don't see a baby anymore but a toddler
Fun day on our brand new yard!

Hehe hot and sweaty from playing outside!

Homemade Laundry soap

Check out! This is Kenny's cousin's blog. She posted a few months ago about making her own laundry detergent. I knew it was something I wanted to try but my mother had just gotten a high efficiency washer and given me about 5 bottles of laundry soap she could no longer use. (I also got a large bottle from my friend Dawn bc she too got a new HE washer) I thought I would make my own once those bottles were gone- I still have 1 bottle left and decided to use it on our bedding because the homemade doesn't have much of a fragrance! And so today I made it!!! I altered her recipe a bit just out of convenience!

Her recipe :
4 cups grated soap (I use Fels Naptha)

4 cups Baking Soda
4 cups Washing Soda
8 cups Borax
Use approx. 1 Tablespoon per load

Heres what I did:
4 bars Ivory soap, grated (that I got for FREE couponing)
1 4lb. box Borax (It was about 9 cups- I just added it all bc I wanted to use it all up)
1 3lb. box Washing soda (I measured out 4 c. and there was a few cups leftover, so I just threw the rest in)
4 c. baking soda

- It took me about 10 minutes to make!
- I thought grating the soap was going to be very time consuming, but Ivory's texture was perfect. I just chopped w a knife and it crumbled good!
-It has no fragrance. Kenny's cousin told me the biggest difference she noticed was its not fragrant
-It gets stains out well, great for babies clothes and HE washers!
-Store in an air tight rubbermaide container about 2.5-4 gallon size.

It cost me $14.34 total including my storage tote. So next time I make this it will cost me $7.87! This should last me close to a year! That's HUGE savings on laundry soap!
Thanks again, Jenica!

Tuesday, May 10

A week of Couponing in Review

I hope at least one of you got some ideas from my week's worth of couponing posts! I thought I'd do my last post as a summary!
~ Get coupons online at, and
~Be sure to check out and these are couponing blogs with so much more!
~ Buy the Sunday paper ( if possible- a few copies)
~ Take time to write companies of your favorite products
~ Join social media sites like Facebook and/or Twitter

-The key is waiting for an item to go on sale and then match w a coupon. Thus allowing a very low price. I've read a few different places that sales are on a rotation type schudule. With in 6-12 weeks every item in the store is on sale at least once.
-Print or try to get multipe coupons for items you use regularly. Once that item goes on sale you can buy several and store in your stockpile! My stockpile is an old shelving unit in my basement. (More on my stockpile later)
-Get organized!!! Get a system that works for you! Mine looks like this : a coupon expandable file for storing coupons by catagory. Envelopes w store names on the outside and the coupons I intend to use at that store inside. Also, while shopping I use a small clip board w my gorcery list and coupons to refer back to.

I'm certain there is so much that I forgot to tell you, things I do that I don't even realize! But I plan to continue sharing my adventures in couponing!
Happy Couponing!

Monday, May 9

This is how I coupon~ Part IV

I realized I never shared!!!! It seems like almost every single online printable coupon are all the same and can be found on You can only print 2 of each coupon per computer before it tells you that you've reached the limit. Ken & I each have laptops so I am able to print a great coupon 4 times! At first I would browse the site and only print the coupons I would use that week for my weekly shopping. But soon I realized that some coupons stay on the site for weeks while others will only remain for days. I'm not exactly sure why?!?! So I now print any coupon that I think I will use. I watch the expiration dates and try to match w a sale to get the lowest price before it expires. By doing this I can get the item at a low price and then store in my stockpile for later use!
Happy Couponing!

Homemade bread crumbs

Every week I have several pieces of bread left that doesn't get used because it starts to stale. I try to waste as little as possible in my home. So, I decided to make homemade bread crumbs! I know, Great Value bread crumbs are only $1.33 for 15 oz. But I have everything I need- stale bread, a dehydrator and time! I stick the left over pieces in the fridge or freezer to prevent molding.When I have what I feel will make a substantial batch I get to work! 

Place bread on trays wo any parts touching
Set temperature to 145 degrees
Let dehydrate for 1 hour
Place hard bread in food processor and blend until perfect consistency

This time I got 6 cups of bread crumbs! Of course, depending on how much bread you have will depend on how many cups you'll get. I put 3 cups in an air tight container and into my pantry. The other 3 c. I froze! I'll have enough bread crumbs to last me months w virtually no work. Another plus- my bread crumbs are whole wheat! :)

Saturday, May 7

Stuffed French Toast w Strawberry Lemon Syrup

It seems if we are home on Saturdays- I'm making something special for breakfast. Today, it was stuffed French Toast w strawberry lemon syrup! It looks like a lot of work but it really didn't take that long. This recipe made 3 stuffed pieces which is really like 6 pieces.

Egg Custard:
3 eggs
1 can evaporated milk
1 tsp. vanilla
fresh grated nutmeg
1. Combine all ingredients and whisk until well combined

Cream cheese stuffing:
4 oz. cream cheese (half of a package)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 c. finely chopped strawberries
zest from 1 lemon
1. Combine all ingredients and beat using Kitchen Aide or hand mixer until well combined. Strawberries should break down and be incorporated.

Strawberry Lemon Syrup:
1 c. cold water
2 Tbsp corn starch
1/3 c. sugar
1/4 c. lemon juice
splash of vanilla
1/2 - 1c. sliced strawberries
1. Start w cold water in a small sauce pan add corn starch and stir until corn starch is combine/dissolved.
2. Add sugar and lemon juice. Bring to a boil, then turn down heat to low and let simmer for about 5 minutes. It will thicken greatly.
3. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and strawberries

French Toast:
1/2 loaf of thick bread ( I used french bread today but have used a lot of varieties)
1-2 Tbsp. butter
1. Over medium heat preheat a skillet w butter
2.Slice bread into about 2inch pieces. Next slice a "pocket" in the middle of the bread wo slicing all the way through to the bottom. Last, warm bread for about 15 seconds in the microwave. This allows the bread to be pliable while stuffing!
3.Using a small spoon stuff the bread w the cream cheese mixture.
4. Dunk into egg mixture
5. Place on skillet and cook on each side for about 5 minutes.
6. Spoon strawberry lemon syrup on. :)

With out Strawberry lemon syrup so you can see it better

Friday, May 6


1 bx wheat thins, Choc. chips, Ground turkey, Cereal, 6 boxes pasta, 1 dz eggs, 1 Greek yogurt!
Look what I got for FREE at Kroger tonight! Yes, FREE I didn't pay 1 penny for any of these items. It adds up to $18.62 worth of FREE groceries. I also used coupons on the rest of my groceries and saved $13.40! Total was $43 LESS than what I used to spend on my weekly groceries. I hope you're thinking about putting into action some of the tips I've posted and you start seeing savings too! Happy Couponing!

This is how I coupon~ Part III

Sunday Paper- I know the paper is where most people get their coupons. Originally, I did not want to pay for the paper to only get use out of a few coupons.
Now on Sunday mornings I scurry to my front step, grab the paper, ruffle through for the coupons, briefly skim the rest of the paper and pitch it. Ahhh, seems to be contradict my reduce, recycle, reuse normal way of living. But so, far I have gotten great deals and now I would hate to give up my Sunday paper. I try to give away the coupons for the products I do not use. And I recycle my paper. So hopefully I'm not doing too much harm :) & These are coupon circulars, normally in the Sunday paper. But if your paper doesn't have one or the other you can visit their websites and print coupons. Unfortunately, not all the coupons in the paper are on their website.
Happy Couponing!

Thursday, May 5

A Peek inside my mailbox....

All this came w/i 4 days mail!!!! Pretty awesome huh? I got great coupons for FREE items! I have started a spread sheet of all my FREE items and the money I'm saving. Soon I'll share those numbers w you and I have NO doubt you'll be blown away.
Happy Couponing!

This is how I coupon~ Part II

Follow social media websites- First, I signed up for a separate Facebook account with the same email I used to email companies. Oringinally, I wasn't using a separate account and my personal Facebook page was bombarded w updates from companies. I like it so much better now because when I log into my "Coupon Facebook" I'm there to just do that- COUPON! I found several pages that I "liked" and am informed of lots of awesome deals. All of my favorite stores, products and even coupon pages. Example: from Snapple's page I got two $1 off coupons & on Heinz page I got one $2 off coupon, allowing me to get a 40oz. bottle of ketchup at Walmart for FREE! And that is just 2 examples I've gotten so many great coupons!
-Follow blogs- Money saving mom, Krazy Coupn Lady, Coupon Mom, The coupon Trainer: are just a few of my favorites :) These sites give great tips and systems. They also match up sales w coupons to get you the most savings. These sites take a lot of time out of couponing!
Happy Couponing!
(I know Twitter is another great resource. I however, don't use it because I don't have a smart phone so Twitter isn't very useful to me)

Tuesday, May 3

This is how I coupon~ Part I

Write Companies- This was a little bit time consuming at first. But I have started to see the benefits. Today, I got coupons worth $5 of FREE Dannon products. Products that I buy weekly! This has been useful because to my knowledge the coupons I've received this way aren't available anywhere else!

- I made a list of products that I buy often
-I made a Word document with a generic letter.
-Then I went to a bunch of websites signed up for "newsletters". An email address is needed for this. I HIGHLY suggest creating a separate email account from your personal/everyday account. Because you'll be bombarded with emails from companies.
- Next I emailed them my generic letter. But first I went through and "UNgenericized" it. I filled in the product name and a little description as to way I liked it so much. Last in the letter, I simply asked for coupons! Because it was done through emails only it cost me nothing to do this except Time!
Good Luck & Happy Couponing!

Monday, May 2

Stuffed French Toast WINS

Yes, stuffed french toast wins. I usually post recipes on Monday or Tuesday but this week you're going to be disappointed. I was planning on making stuffed french toast this past Saturday for breakfast because I saw it was clearly going to win. I had all the ingredients....OR so I thought. I was soooo certain I had the perfect bread in the freezer I didn't even bother to check. But when I went to pull the bread out it wasn't there. Ugh, I was wrong and so I did not have bread to make the french toast, ha a necessary ingredient! I now have everything and will be making it this coming Saturday. Why so long? Make it for dinner this week? Ahhh, NO you see Ken hates breakfast for dinner. And the only time I got away w making him breakfast for dinner was when I was pregnant! So please stay tuned for the recipe!
PS- No voting this week! Guess I get the week off. Good thing so I can focus on COUPONING!

A week ALL about Coupons!

A weeks worth of coupon postings. Aren't you excited?!?! Every day I'll share what I do and what works for me!

I signed up for about 2 years ago. I would causally check the site and print a few coupons and if I was lucky those coupons actually made it to the store w me! I felt for the most part, generic store brands were always cheaper, even w a coupon. I had no organization. Couponing just wasn't proving itself. Then this past fall I started this blog and stumbled across other blogs that were about using coupons, spending less, being a "home economist" etc. It took me a few months to read up, get my own system and start seeing the benefits-But oh boy am I!! The trick is matching up store sales w the coupons!! DUH, why didn't I think of that? Also, buy the smallest unit the coupon will allow. This way the percentage saved is higher and certainly another coupon will come out by the time you need to buy that product again! Now I want to share some of my tips to help everyone save a few bucks. Depending on how much time you have to put into it will depend on what you get out of it. Stay tuned and Happy Couponing!

Sunday, May 1


I did my weekly shopping on Saturday for this coming week. Mainly, because we were in town, Mae was napping and Ken offered to stay home. So I went ALONE! It was nice to go w/o Mae (Shhh, don't tell her) I went to 2 stores- Wal-Mart & Walgreens.  I spent $40 LESS than what I normally spend on my weekly groceries! Saved $13.33 in coupons and got all this for FREE!!!!! Check out my meals for this week. I think they are great, healthy options. Proving wrong the idea that the only coupons available are for junk food/frozen/processed items!
Happy Couponing!
All these items cost just under $25. The Snapple and bandaides are free after mail in rebates. So it will be several weeks before I get my money back. But I had to consider them as FREE bc eventually they will be :)

Ok this coffee was my prize this week- even though it wasn't FREE. With my CAT discount card, store sale and coupons, I got each canister for $1.37! Normally I pay around $4 each. Now I've got enough coffee to last a few months. (I put it on the freezer) Haha, maybe a little extreme but I KNOW it will get drank.