Simplifying Saturday

>> Saturday, July 18, 2009

As I've made the transition towards living a more frugal lifestyle, I've learned a lot about living with less and being more thoughtful about the things I purchase. I have certainly brought a lot less into this house in the last year or so than I was before. One area I struggle with though is getting rid of what's already here. I'm not very good about letting go of the stuff. I recently stumbled across a blog called Becoming Minimalist, about a suburban family of four's quest to become minimalist. While reading through the Causes Of Clutter section, I have to say that I think all of those reasons either do or have applied to me at some point. I have the desire to simplify and I do little bits here and there but I'd really like to let go of the excess for good. So, I've committed to letting go and simplifying things. I will track my progress here in a regular series entitled Simplifying Saturday.

This week I simplified things by:
- selling 2 bags of books and magazines at Half-Price Books. Less stuff, extra cash.
- clearing out the phone book drawer and tossing the extra phone books. Are you overrun with these too?
-tossing make-up that was old and I was no longer using.
-mailing a box of cloth diapers and covers that I was saving "just in case we have another baby" to a friend who is due any time now.

If you would like to join me in simplifying, please feel free to leave a comment detailing how you've simplified this week.

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Walgreens Deals 7/18/09-7/25/09

Register Reward Deals

Pilot G2 Pens 2 pk. $1
RR $1
Free after RR

Rembrandt 2/$10
RR $5 wyb 2

2 for $5

Kelloggs Cereal 2/$5
RR $1 wyb 2
$1/1 Kelloggs cereal 6/7/09
$1 each after RR and 2 Qs

Tylenol $4.99
RR $3
$2/1 Tylenol Arthritis 5/17/09 RP
$1/1 Tylenol extra strength 6/7/09 RP
Free or .99 cents after Q and RR

Listerine or Reach 2/$10
RRs $3 wyb 2
B1G1 Reach Toothbrush, any 4/26/09 RP
$3/3 Reach Floss and Reach Toothbrush and Listerine Antiseptic 3/15/09 SS
$1.50/2 Reach Floss and/or Reach Toothbrush and/or Listerine Antiseptic 3/15/09 SS
.50/1 Reach Floss or Toothbrush or Listerine 3/15/09 SS
.50/1 Reach Floss, any 3/15/09 SS
.50/1 Listerine Antiseptic ,500ml 4/26/09 RP


$5 RR WYB 2 or more Excedrin Tension Express gelcaps 40ct or Migraine geltabs 50ct (monthly deal)
B1G1 Excedrin 40 or 50 ct. @ $6.99 this week
$1/1 Excedrin 20ct+ 7/12/09 SS
$1/1 Excedrin Migraine printable
Free after 2 Qs and RRs

Other Deals

Mentos Gum .99 cents with In Ad Q
.55/1 Mentos Gum 5/3/09 SS
.55/1 Mentos Gum 6/21/09 SS
.44 cents each after Qs

.9 cent items:
white posterboard 22x28 in.
Penway 2 pocket folder
#2 pencils
Penway highlighters

.19 cent items :
Papermate mechanical pencils, 5 pack
Papermate pens 10 pk
Papermate prism pens 10 pk
Penway flexible or wooden ruler
100 pack Acco paperclips
2 pocket Penway Poly folder with prongs

.29 cent items:
Penway pink eraser 2 pk
Penway pencil top erasers, 12 pk
Penway wooden pencils, 10 pk

.39 cent items:
Scotch transparent tape
-$1/3 Scotch Tape, any 7/12/09 RP
Penway white glue 4 oz.
Penway poly binder

.49 cent items:
Pencil box
8 pk Penway Jumbo Crayons
24 pk. Penway crayons
Bic brite liner highlighters 5 pk.

.59 cent items:
Penway dual hole pencil sharpener
It's Academic sharpener & eraser
Scotch mailers

.99 cent items:
Crayola color pencils 12 pk
3 subject spiral notebook 120 sheets
It's Academic stretch book cover
Spangles pencil pouch
Penway fabric carry all pouch
25 pk. all in one pencil kit

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CVS Deals 7/19/09-7/25/09

3 Day Sale-Sunday, Monday, Tuesday Only

Caliber or CVS memo book 50-80 sheets .99 cents
ECBs .99 cents
Free after ECBs

Caliber or CVS no. 2 pencils 24 ct. $1.99
ECBs $1.99
Free after ECBs

1" vinyl binder $3
ECBs $3
Free after ECBs

Paper Mate 1.2 pens 10 ct. .99 cents
ECBs .99 cents
Free after ECBs

Caliber or CVS filler paper 150 sheets $2
ECBs $2
Free after ECBs

Weekly ECB Deals

Kodak Picture Movie DVD $9.99
ECBs $9.99
Free after ECBs

CVS pantyliners 22 ct. .89 cents
ECBs .89 cents
Free after ECBs

Speed Stick Pro deoderant 2.7 oz. $2.99
ECBs $2
.99 cents after ECB

Get $5 ECBs wyb a backpack. psa $7.99
$2.99 and up after ECBs

Duracell batteries AA, AAA 4 pk., C or D 2 pk., or 9-volt 1 pk. $2.99
ECBs $1
.75/1 Duracell batteries 6/28/09 RP
$1.24 after ECBs and Q

Other Deals

Sobe Lifewater B1G1
B1G1 printable
Free after Qs

Kelloggs Raisin Bran, Corn Flakes, Corn Pops, Rice Krispies, Apple Jacks, & Froot Loops 8.7-15 oz. B1G1 @ $4.29 each
$1/1 Kellogg's cereal 6/7/09 RP
$1.15 each after 2 Qs

Johnson's baby powder, lotion, oil, wash, shampoo 13-15 oz., oil gel 6.5 oz. or Desitin 2 oz. $2.99
$1/1 Desitin 4/26/09 RP
$1/1 printables
$1.99 after Q


Cascade Gel or Powder 45 oz. $2.99
$1/1 any Cascade 7/5/09 PG
$1/1 Cascade Home Made Simple booklet
$1.99 after Q

Just For Men Haircolor, Touch of Gray or Moustache, Beard and Sideburns $6.99
$2/1 printable here
Rebate form here

Free plus $2 overage after Q and rebate

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Bath & Body Works:Free Lip Item With Any Purchase

Print this coupon to get a free lip item with any purchase at Bath & Body Works. Valid through July 19, 2009.

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Deals Of The Week 7/18/09

>> Friday, July 17, 2009

I bought a ton of groceries this week. Kroger was having their buy 10 items get $5 off sale. I decided to use the majority of the budget for this week and next and do one big shopping trip. I can just pick up whan we need next week. I also got started on the school supply shopping. I already had a few things on hand from last year. I have about half of what the kids need now.
Here's what I got this week.

Walgreens:


I bought:
2 All detergent $10
1 Crayola classic markers .99 cents
1 Crayola fine tip markers .99 cents
1 colored pencils .59 cents
2 Elmer's glue 2 pks. $1.18
2 packs reward stickers(for teachers) $1-clearance
Qs
$1/1 All detergent
$1/1 All detergent
$5 RRs
Total OOP with tax: $8.23
Received $3 RRs

CVS

I bought:
1 Gillette Fusion razor $7.99
2 Electrasol power tabs $7.98
2-1 subject notebook $1.98
Qs
1 $4/1 Gillette Fusion
2 $2.50/1 Electrasol
$8 ECBs
Total OOP with tax: $1.55
Received $5.98 ECBs

I used my Grocery Game list for Kroger. I paid $79.48 for $186.60 worth of groceries for a savings percentage of 57%.

Weekly Summary: I paid $89.26 for $230.76 worth of groceries for a savings percentage of 61%. This leaves me with $30.74 for next week which is very doable.

Stop by The Centsible Sawyer, Money Saving Mom, Cha Ching On a Shoestring and Southern Savers to see more great deals.

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Free Chocolate Fridays

Go here to register for your FREE Real Chocolate coupon from Mars. Coupons are limited so register now.

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Borders:SpongeBob Day of Happiness

>> Thursday, July 16, 2009

Borders is celebrating SpongeBob Squarepants' 10 year anniversary with a SpongeBob Day Of Happiness. Take your kids to a participating Borders on Saturday, July 18th at 2 p.m. and celebrate SpongeBob's anniversary with games, crafts and giveaways. Please note: SpongeBob will not be there. Go here for more details.


While you're there you can use this coupon to get a free paperback when you purchase any one hardcover for $24.95 or more.

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Stein Mart: 25% Off Coupon On All Red Dot And Clearance Items

Print this coupon from Stein Mart to get an additional 25% off all red dot and clearance items. Valid through July 19th.

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Gap: Additional 25% Off Sale Items

For four days only you can get an extra 25% off sale items at Gap when you use the code SALE25 at checkout. Offer valid July 16th through July 19th. Don't forget to go through Ebates to get 2% cash back.

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The Limited: Friends And Family Event 30% Off

Use this coupon to receive 30% off your in-store or online purchases at The Limited during their Friends and Family Event. Event begins 7/16/09 online and 7/17 in-store and ends 7/19.

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Walgreens $5 Off $25 Coupon

Walgreens has a new $5 off $25 coupon available here. Valid Thursday, July 16th and Friday, July 17th.

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$10 Backpacks At The Children's Place

>> Wednesday, July 15, 2009


The first day of school is right around the corner. Right now you can get backpacks for $10 at The Children's Place online. If you'd rather shop in store you can get a backpack for $7.50 when you purchase $30 in merchandise. See the $10 backpack selection here. Don't forget to go through Ebates to get 3% cash back. Also, use code FA79 to get 15% off your order.

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Arby's Wednesday Freebie

This weeks freebie at Arby's is a free regular roast beef sandwich with a soft drink purchase.

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My Coupon Solution

I've been a serious coupon user for over a year now. When I first started using coupons I just had one of those little cardboard coupon organizers. I soon realized I needed a better system. Twelve or thirteen categories just weren't enough given the number of coupons I had. I knew it would be easier to plan and organize my coupons if I could break them down into many categories. So I began to look for better ways to organize my coupons.

So along came the big, massive binder. It was perfect in so many ways. I bought a couple of packs of photo holders. I divided them into grocery, organics, health & beauty and household categories. And then I labeled each one with the subcategories. I had space for sales flyers, my calculator, pens and much more. It was beautiful. And it was big and bulky. I wouldn't take it with me everywhere because of it's size, just taking the coupons I absolutely knew I was going to use with me. I often would miss out on a great deal because I didn't have the coupon I needed with me. I decided I wanted a smaller, more trasportable solution.



Enter the 4x6 photo album. The size was perfect, the capacity was not. It held 100 photos so there were plenty of pages for all my categories that I like. However, with all my coupons in there it was not very compact and I found it hard to slip all the coupons in and out when I was at the store and ran across an unexpected deal because of the way the pages were. And, well, it just looked kind of messy which I didn't really like either.




After a lot of thought and walking the ailses in Staples looking for a better solution, I finally came up with something that I think is going to be all that I want. I am using an old check holder that I used to use to organize my bills. It's size is compact enough to make it very portable. It has a side pocket to hold sales flyers and a zippered pocket where I can store my calculator and pen.



It only has thirteen pockets but I used envelopes to create the sub-categories. They are alphabatized and arranged by departments: grocery, health & beauty and household. I do still need to add the tabs to mark those divisions. And while it is crammed full, I can still zip it closed so it looks nice and tidy.



So I'm very happy to say, I have finally found what may be the best solution for me. What about you? How do you organize your coupons? Have you tried lots of different ways or have you always organized them the same way?

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KMart: $5 Off $50 Purchase Of Clearanced Priced Merchandise

>> Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Get a coupon for $5 off your clearanced price merchandise purchase of $50 or more at KMart from coupons.com.

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Wendy's: $1 Off Boneless Chicken Wings


Print this coupon to get $1 off Sweet & Spicy Asian, Honey BBQ or Bold Buffalo boneless chicken wings from Wendy's.

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Gymboree 20% Off Purchase Coupon

I just received the August issue of O magazine and there is a coupon for 20% off your entire purchase at Gymboree. Coupon expires August 30, 2009.

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Free Subscription to O Magazine

Register here to get 5 free issues of O Magazine.

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The Cheesecake Factory: Half Price Cheesecake Slices on July 30th

July 30th is National Cheesecake Day. The Cheesecake Factory is celebrating by offering half-price cheesecake slices. Dine in only. One slice per guest. Mark your calendars.

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Walgreen's Summer Clearance 50% Off

>> Monday, July 13, 2009

I was in Walgreen's today and they had their summer items: shirts, flip flops, swim toys and pool accessories at 50% off. The timing of the summer clearance deals can vary from area to area but keep an eye out at your store if you can use any of these items.


We have a pool so I'm always looking out for good deals on floats and pool toys. This Papasan spring float was regularly $17.99. I got it for $8.99 today. But to make it an even better deal, a rebate form printed out at checkout for a $3 rebate on this making it $5.99 after sale and rebate. That's a really good price on these.

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Real Simple Magazine $5 Subscription


This is a fantastic deal on Real Simple Magazine. Get a 1 year subscription to Real Simple magazine for just $5 at amazon.com. If you have any Amazon gift cards that you've earned through swagbucks you can get this for free. Get your subscription here.

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Stapes Deals 7/12/09-7/18/09

Here are some of the deals you can get at Staples this week.

There is a $5 off $25 purchase coupon on the front of the ad.

1 cent deals
8 pk. #2 yellow pencils 1 cent
8.5 x 11 copy paper, 500 sheets $3.69-$3.68 rebate=1 cent

$1 deals
Acme Jr. blunt or pointed scissors 2 pk. $1
Scotch Magic Tape $1
Staples pink wedge erasers $1
Bic Velocity Stick Fashion Pens Assorted $1
Staples photo plus 4x6 paper $1
Sharpie Major Accent Highlighters 6 pack $1
Staples translucent pencil boxes assorted $1
Bic White Out quick dry 2 pk. $1
Staples Mini Magnetic stapler $1

Buy 1 Get 1 Free Deals
Paper Mate Gel Medium Point 4 pk. @ $4.99
Crayola Classic Markers, Broad Line 10 pk. @ $3.99
Crayola Classic Markers, Fine Line 10 pk. @ $3.99
Staples Side Bound Memo Books, 3x5 & 4x6
Sharpie Twin Tip Markers, black or assorted 4 pk.
Staples Hype Retractable Highlighters, assorted or yellow, 4pk. @ $3.99
Staples Jumbo Gold Paper Clips 100 pk. @ $3.99
Staples Top Bound Memo Book 3x5 & 4x6 @ $4.29

Buy 2 Get 1 Free
All LockerMate products

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Menu Plan Monday 7/13/09


Here's what we'll be eating this week:
Monday: Short Order night
Tuesday: Grilled burgers, fries & corn
Wednesday: BLT sandwiches
Thursday:Pasta marinara
Friday: Chicken wraps with pasta salad
Saturday: salmon, baked potatoes & salad
Sunday: leftovers
Visit I'm An Organizing Junkie for more great menu plans.

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