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I saved over $100!!

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RECEIPT BREAKDOWN:

Total (with tax) BEFORE coupons: $196.53

(Subtotal was $186.86 + CA tax of 7.5% on $128.97 of taxable items was $9.67 = $196.53)

Redcard Debit (NOT Redcard Credit): 5% off: $8.09 (receipt shows this, but that’s not 5%. I purchased baby food, so I think this is the discrepancy. I plan to ask for details on this on my next trip)

Manufacturer Coupons: $30.00

Target Store Coupons: $28.58 (This includes that $5 back on total of $75 or more card from the Back To School circular)

Cartwheel Savings: $7.06

Savings before gift cards: $73.73

PLUS $30 in Gift Cards! ($10 for 2 Huggies diapers (x2), $5 for 2 Huggies wipes and $5 for 2 Playtex items)

TOTAL SAVINGS: $103.73

 

DEAL BREAKDOWNS: 

Huggies Diapers: 2@24.99, receive $10 Target Gift Card

Manufacturer Coupons: $3 off (x2) =$6

Target Coupons: $2 off (2) = $4

Cartwheel: 5% off $2.50

Savings of $12.50, plus $10 Gift Card = Total Savings: $ 22.50

$24.99 x 2 = $49.98 – $22.50 = $27.48 /2 = $13.24 a Box!!

 

Huggies Diapers: (Snug and Dry kind so it was a different coupon than the other one): 2@24.99, receive $10 Target Gift Card

Manufacturer Coupons: $2.50 off (x2) =$5

Target Coupons: $2 off (2) = $4

Cartwheel: 5% off $2.50

Savings of $11.50, plus $10 Gift Card = Total Savings: $ 21.50

$24.99 x 2 = $49.98 – $21.50 = $28.48 /2 = $14.24 a Box!!

 

Huggies Wipes: 2@10.99, receive $5 Target Gift Card

Manufacturer Coupons: $1 off (x2) =$2

Cartwheel: 5% off $1.11

Savings of $3.11, plus $5 Gift Card = Total Savings: $8.11 

$10.99 x 2 = $21.98 – $8.11 = $13.87 /2 = $6.94 a Box!!

 

Playtex 360 (36 count): 2@6.99, receive $5 Target Gift Card

Manufacturer Coupons: $3 off (x2) =$6

Savings of $6, plus $5 Gift Card = Total Savings: $11 

$6.99 x 2 = $13.98 – $11 = $2.98 /2 = $1.49 a Box!!

 

Carefree (20 count): 2@.94

Manufacturer Coupons: $.50 off (x2) =$1

Total Savings: $1

$.94 x 2 = $1.88 – $1 = $.88 /2 = $.44 a Box!!

 

Right Guard Antiperspirant/Deodorant: $2.99 (x3)

Manufacturer Coupons: $3 off of 3 =$3

Target Coupons: $2 off (x3) =$6

$9, Total Savings: $9 

$2.99 x 3 = $8.97 – $9 = $-.03 = FREE!!

 

Skintimate Shaving Gel: $2.29 (x2)

Manufacturer Coupons: $1 off of 2 =$1

Target Coupons: $1 off (x2) =$2

Total Savings: $3 

$2.29 x 2 = $4.58- $3 = $1.58 = .79 each!!

 

Schick Hydro Silk 5blade Razors (4pack) : 9.49

Manufacturer Coupons: $2 off  =$2

Target Coupons: $4 off = $4

Cartwheel: 10% off $.95

Total Savings: $6.95

$9.49 – $6.95 = $2.54 /4 = $.64 a Razor!!

 

Gerber Organic Bites: 1.89 (8)

Manufacturer Coupons: $1 off  2 (x4) =$4

Target Coupons: 15% off 8 ($1.89 x 8 = $15.12) = $2.27

Total Savings of $6.27 

$1.89 x 8 = $15.12- $6.27 = $8.85 /8 = $1.11 each!!

 

Gerber Baby Food: 1.09 (x10) *I was supposed to get a sale price for buying ten, but didn’t get the sale price and was too tired to fight it after I had already been at customer service for a prior error on the receipt that was corrected after the fact… but I digress…)

Target Coupon: 15% off 8 ($1.09 x 8 = $8.72) = $1.31

Total Savings of $1.31 (though, it would have been another .90 off if I had gotten the sale price!) 

$1.09 x 8 = $8.72- $1.31 = $7.41 /8 = $.93 each (+2 at regular price)

If I had gotten the sale price, it would have broken down even further. I can’t stress this enough, CHECK YOUR RECEIPT!! Good luck and happy couponing!

 

Thanks for reading this. I hope this post helps others save too! Make sure to follow me on facebook, twitter, pinterest and all that jazz…

 

 

 

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Where to Find Coupons

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I often get asked, “where do you find coupons?” Well, here’s my list of the top 1o places I look to find coupons. If you are interested in learning more about couponing, don’t forget to check out my “how to coupon” post here.

1) The newspaper:

The Sunday edition of the newspaper is where you will find the majority of your coupon books. If you sign up for coupon mailing lists, you might also receive newspaper coupons on Wednesday in the mail.

There are three major companies that do coupon inserts: RedPlum, SmartSource and P&G. RedPlum and Super Saver coupons are most often available (not always both at the same time), but the P&G one only comes out once a month. P&G inserts are the most sought after because they include coupons for products from P&G, such as Pantene, Cascade, Gain, Pampers, etc).

While it is awesome if you can get a Sunday paper free from a family member or neighbor, you may still have to buy a Sunday paper. Here’s a friendly tip: The Sunday paper is only $1 at Dollar Tree, as opposed to $1.50 or $1.75 in most stores.

2) Store circulars/ads:

 Most stores have a weekly coupon circular. Target most often has several store coupons that you can combine with manufacturer coupon for even greater savings. Other stores that often carry coupons include Family Dollar, K-Mart, Walgreens and Rite-Aid, just to name a few.

3) Online coupon sites:

This is the big one. There are several coupon resources online, but most of them are just redirecting you to the same couponing sites. You can go to them directly: RedPlumSmartSource and Catalina

Another favorite site to look for coupons is Target. These are mostly Target store coupons though, not manufacturer coupons that can be used anywhere. I will write more on how to combine store coupons and manufacturer coupons (also called stacking) in another post.

Parents and Teachers know about BoxTops, do you? Participating companies place boxtops on their packaging and kids can bring those boxtops in to their school. The school can then exchange each box top with the manufacturers for $.10 each. I’ll write more on How to Double your BoxTops in another post.

By far, my favorite place to get online coupons is Coupons.com, because this site is easy to use and often has coupons on products I actually buy.

Finally, there is RetailMeNot. While this site does not have quite as many printable coupons as other sites, this is the best site to find promo codes and free shipping codes when buying stuff online.

The thing no one tells you but you should know: In order to print from these sites, you often have to install some printing software or Java. This software ensure that you ONLY PRINT TWO of each kind of coupon. I suggest running a “test print” on a coupon you don’t care about first, just to make sure everything is going to print ok. You only get TWO of each coupon, so make ‘em count.

Read tomorrow’s post All About Online Coupons for more tips and tricks on printing coupons.

4) Directly from the manufacturer/email and mail subscriptions:

I have signed up for just about every mailing list and email list I can think of for products I use the most. Because the object of most manufacturers is to make money, not give you discounts, these lists are designed to collect more information on you so they can better market to you. I don’t mind this, but you should know what you are getting yourself into when you sign up for anything. 

These companies WILL share your information with other companies and you WILL get lots of junk mail and junk email if you sign up for these lists. I suggest setting up a separate “couponing” email address that you use specifically for signing up for coupons. It will fill up with emails in no time, I promise!

5) Smartphone apps:

My favorite phone apps are the ones for JoAnn’s and Michael’s.You can use phone coupons, printed coupons from online and coupons clipped from the newspaper at these stores. For example, let’s say I have a coupon on my phone from JoAnn’s, another that I printed online and still another from the newspaper. I have three items in my cart. I can use one coupon for each item in the same transaction! Because the coupons are all from different sources, they will have their own, unique barcode. Thus, they can all be used in the same trip. I have gotten some pretty great deals at my favorite crafting stores by doing this.

Other popular coupon apps include one for coupons.com and groceryIQ (which is also using coupons from coupons.com). 

6) Magazines:

I love magazine coupons! Manufacturers use targeted ads in magazines (they put diaper ads in parenting magazines, for example, or they put furniture polish ads in a home or decorating magazine). I know that when I pick up a magazine that appeals to me, I am likely to find coupons in it for products that I actually use, because the magazine has a targeted audience. 

7) Catalina coupons:

I know what you are thinking, “What the heck are Catalina coupons?” I know it sounds foreign, but I bet you’ve come across these coupons more often than you think. These are the coupons that come out of a device at the register when you get your receipt. You often receive one because something that you have purchased let’s the register know that you might be interested in a specific coupon. For example, if you buy 5 boxes of cereal, you might receive a catalina coupon for cereal the next time you shop. 

8) Blinkies and Peelies:

These are those coupons you find “blinking” in the aisles at your grocery store or that you “peel off ” of an item to use in the checkout line. I rarely find the peel off kind in the store, but I do sometimes find these kinds of coupons stuffed into the container once I open it up at home, such as in my cereal box or in an oatmeal container. 

9) Social networking sites:

I can’t begin to tell you how many coupons I have received, simply by clicking the “like” button of a page. In fact, here is one to get you started $1 off Wisk.  

Other great facebook resources for coupons include: CouponGeek, TheKrazyCouponLady, TotallyTargetLikeACoupon and CouponPro. Oh, and my favorite: CouponLove. Since CouponLove lives here in the valley, her coupons are often more helpful than another coupon site based elsewhere in the company.

Don’t forget to LIKE the heavenlypenniesfanpage on facebook or follow heavenlypennies on twitter while you’re at it!

10) Fellow couponers: 

I get a lot of information from others online and through social media. Don’t be afraid to ask questions! If you have a question, chances are someone else has the same question. I find most couponers to be very helpful and supportive of others. We are all looking for the same thing:  to save a little money and help out our faily where we can. People like this are generally not the snotty types. 

Sometimes I swap coupons with fellow couponers that I know. There are also places that you can go online to buy, sell or trade coupons, but I have not tried any of those so I can’t give you my experience in this area. 

 

Please feel free to comment in the comments section at the bottom of this page if you have any questions or additional information you would like to add to this article.

Don’t forget to check heavenlypennies.com often for more money saving tips.  My “how to coupon” post is here. Read tomorrow’s post All About Online Coupons for more tips and tricks on printing coupons.

Have you registered at heavenlypennies.com yet? It’s 100% FREE! Registered members enjoy: pre-approved posting status, receive a once a week email that includes a post digest and will receive member discounts when any new ebooks on heavenlypennies.com are published (ebooks coming soon!). heavenlypennies.com has made it so easy to register! Head over to the heavenlypennies.com homepage here and simply click on any icon under the “connect with” logo on the LEFT sidebar. You can connect with Facebook, Twitter or Googleplus. Just clickconnect and go! That’s it! So easy!

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How to Coupon

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Welcome to couponing week! All week long, I will be posting information about coupons, discount stores and online specials.  In today’s post I will show you an example of a coupon scenario that I experienced over the weekend.

I went to Family Dollar this weekend and I saved over $60 with sales and coupons!! Amazing, right? Coupons really do make a difference! I am going to show one example (I just did this with lots of different items), so it will be as easy to follow as possible. I hope that the information will help others learn how to do the same thing to save more money at the store!

Let’s get started!

Here are seven steps to successfully using coupons:

1) Decide which store you are going to go to beforehand. I live in a small town, but there are two discount stores here that accept manufacturer coupons: Dollar Tree and Family Dollar. I knew I wanted to go to Family Dollar for this shopping trip.

2) Sign up for the mailing list andor email list to all of your most frequented stores. Heads up! You will get a lot of messages regarding coupons and special offers if you sign up for any email lists, so you might want to create a separate “couponing” email account on yahoo or gmail for this. For example, I have one email account on gmail that all my friends and family use, and another on yahoo that I keep mostly for coupons or when I sign up for any email offers. I signed up for Family Dollar’s mailing list and received a store coupon in the mail, for 20% off my entire purchase. Because this was a store coupon (a Family Dollar coupon), I could combine this with any manufacturer coupons (Wisk, Snuggle, Tide, etc) that I might also have. This is sometimes referred to as stacking coupons by couponing websites.

3) Look at the store circular ad to see what is on sale. Here is a picture of the circular ad for Family Dollar this week. For my example here, I’m going to focus in on the Wisk detergent. It’s normally priced at $5 a container, but it is on sale for $4 this week.

wisk 500

4) Look in coupon books or online for any coupons that match the items already on sale. Many times the weekly sales of stores like Family Dollar, Kmart, Walmart, Target and Kroger (FoodsCo in my area) coincide with the coupons that are available. I most often find my coupons in the sunday paper and online. (More on where to find coupons in tomorrow’s post!)

Here is a screen shot of the coupon I used yesterday. 

wisk coupon image

 The $2 off coupon is no longer available (don’t worry, this coupon comes back every few months). In the meantime, there is a $1 off coupon available here. Just like their facebook page and print.

5) Combine your coupons with sale and clearance items. In this example, the Wisk laundry detergent was on sale for $4. My manufacturer coupon was for $2 off. So, $2. Plus, my store coupon for 20% off my total purchase brought my total for each container of Wisk to $1.60 each (plus tax).

 6) Don’t over buy! I know it can get pretty exciting to see your receipt drop so dramatically, but you need to set limits. I happen to have a very large family, so there are times when buying a lot of laundry detergent makes sense (I’m going to attempt to make my own laundry detergent one day, but for now I’m happy to find good deals). My point is, not everyone needs, or will use, so much laundry detergent. In fact, many stores, such as walmart and target will limit your purchases to only 2 or 4 items per transaction. Part of setting a budget is following that budget, even when there is a coupon or a sale item. These coupons and sales come back every few months. You are not losing out by waiting until you need to buy something. The deal will be there again! In my case, my supply of detergent and dryer sheets (which I also use for dusting, see here and here) was running low. Set your budget and stick to it. Coupons are just a tool to help you achieve your budget.

7) Don’t forget to check heavenlypennies.com often for more money saving tips. Tomorrow’s post: Where to find coupons

Have you registered at heavenlypennies.com yet? It’s 100% FREE! Registered members enjoy: pre-approved posting status, receive a once a week email that includes a post digest and will receive member discounts when any new ebooks on heavenlypennies.com are published (ebooks coming soon!). heavenlypennies.com has made it so easy to register! Head over to the heavenlypennies.com homepage here and simply click on any icon under the “connect with” logo on the LEFT sidebar. You can connect with Facebook, Twitter or Googleplus. Just clickconnect and go! That’s it! So easy!

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Kids Eat Free at IHOP

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Here’s a great way to go out to eat with the kids and save a little money too!

This information is for the IHOP in Hanford, California. It may not be the same at other locations. Feel free to leave a comment if you know of any other locations that have this promotion. 

Location: Hanford, California
Hours: Monday-Thursday: 7am to 10pm
Friday and Saturday: 7am – Midnight

Kids Eat FREE

Everyday 4pm-10pm
*one free kids meal per adult meal that you pay for. Also, the drinks are not free, but there are free refills on the drinks that you pay for.

Facepainting Day

Saturday and Sunday 9am-1pm
*one free kids meal per adult meal that you pay for. Also, the drinks are not free, but there are free refills on the drinks that you pay for.

 

ihop 1

 

This looks like fun!

ihop 3

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The BEST Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe

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When I was younger, I used to work at a Red Robin Restaurant. They had the most delicious Tortilla Soup I had ever tasted up to that point. Here is my own version of that tortilla soup that I used to love so much, but with a few additions that I believe make this even better than Red Robbin’s. This soup is so good, you’ll want to eat it all winter long.

Chicken Tortilla Soup
Serves 16
The Best Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe you will ever find.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
40 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
40 min
Ingredients
  1. 4 cans chicken broth
  2. 1 can diced tomatoes
  3. 1 can diced tomatoes w/jalapeños
  4. 1 can sweet kernel corn
  5. 1 can black beans
  6. 1 packet taco seasoning
  7. 10-15 corn tortillas (I use 12, add more if you want thicker)
  8. 1 cup carrots, diced
  9. 1 cup celery, diced
  10. 1 cup onion, diced (I use yellow or white onion)
  11. 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  12. 2-3 chicken breasts or thighs (boneless, skinless meat)
  13. Salt and pepper
  14. Corn oil
  15. 2 ½ cups shredded cheese (I use Mexican blend or 4 cheese blend)
  16. 1 cup milk
  17. Sour cream
  18. Tortilla chips
Instructions
  1. Defrost chicken meat & cut meat into cubes (I use kitchen shears – much easier).
  2. Add salt and pepper and half the garlic to the chicken. Then, cook the cubes in a lightly oiled pan.
  3. Pour the cans of broth, tomatoes, corn, beans and taco seasoning into a large pot. Start to bring the soup to a boil.
  4. Dice the carrots, celery, onion and mince the garlic. Then, sauté them in a bit of corn oil until they are soft (about 10 minutes).
  5. Cut up the tortillas, and throw them in with the vegetable mix after you have sautéd them (this step helps the tortillas absorb all the remaining oil and it also softens the tortillas a little bit).
  6. Add the veggies and tortillas to the broth mix. Bring to a boil. Then, reduce to medium.
  7. Boil the soup for about 20 minutes, stirring about every 5 minutes, to keep the vegetables and tortillas from burning at the bottom of pot. (WATCH OUT: When you stir and scrape the bottom of the pot, sometimes pent up pressure will cause the mix to POP up, so be careful to stir slowly and don't lean over the pot so you don’t get burnt).
  8. After about 20 minutes, bring the boiling soup down to a simmer.
  9. Add 2 cups of shredded cheese to soup (saving about ½ cup to top the finished soup with) and simmer another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent anything from burning the bottom of the pot).
  10. WARNING: After the cheese is added, the soup is prone to burn at the bottom, so stir it often.
  11. Add 1 cup milk and stir. Then, simmer another 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes to keep the bottom from burning.
  12. Turn off the Stove. Your Chicken Tortilla Soup is done!
  13. Serve in a bowl w/a dollop of sour cream, some shredded cheese and broken up tortilla chips.
  14. Enjoy!
http://heavenlypennies.com/

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Messy Laundry Detergent? Save money and keep your laundry room clean with this tip

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Do you use liquid laundry detergent? Does it make a mess everywhere? Do you feel as though you are wasting detergent (and wasting money) because the liquid soap runs everywhere or the cup that it comes with sits on top of your washer collecting a big puddle of soap?

Here’s a helpful tip that can help save you money and keep your laundry room nice and tidy:

You will need a small container of liquid detergent. Make sure it is the kind with the lid that is the dispenser, not the kind that uses a separate cup to measure out the soap. I bought a small (25 loads) container of liquid Tide at Family Dollar. It was on sale for $4, but with my .50 off coupon it was only $3.50.

I used the detergent in the smaller container for laundry as normal. Then, when the container was empty, I simply refilled the smaller container, using the liquid from the Large (120 loads) container of Kirkland liquid detergent that I bought at Costco. Every week or so, I just refill the smaller container. 

I now have a cleaner laundry area and I am saving money by not wasting any of the detergent.

I’m going to attempt to make my own laundry soap one of these days… but for now, I am happy not to waste the stuff I bought.

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How To Get Glue Off Plastic Containers

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If you are anything like me, then you are probably on a constant lookout for containers that can serve multiple purposes around the house.  Anytime I can save money by not having to buy something new, it’s fantastic! I really like using clear containers to store various little things: needles and thread, buttons, and of course, the ever elusive Lego collection.  I recently found these awesome animal crackers at Costco. The best part? The container they come in is clear! Now, here comes the tricky part: removing the label.

crisco

So, how the heck do you get glue off a plastic container?

The answer is a lot more simple than you might expect. Vegetable Shortening. Yup! That’s all it takes. A little Crisco will clean even the stickiest glue residue from plastic. 

label off

Just make sure to clean the “paper layer” off the label first (for example, like the image to the left). This can usually be done by running a little warm water over it and peeling back the paper. WARNING: Rubbing shortening over a label before removing the first layer will just make a big mess. After the first layer is off, just rub a little vegetable shortening over the glue residue. It should come off fairly easy from there.

Once you are done, it may be a little greasy. Simply wash the container with a little dish soap and warm water and then dry it off. Voilà! A perfectly clean container, ready to re-purpose around the house. The best part about using this method, compared to others (such as Goo Gone or WD-40), is the plastic remains crystal clear! I’ve used Goo Gone in the past, only for the plastic to become foggy. I like keeping things in clear containers so that I can easily see what is inside, so a foggy container can be very disappointing.

This method is also great because you don’t need to use any harsh chemicals. Saving money by re-purposing an old container and doing it in an environmentally safe way… What’s not to love about that?
 

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