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Coupon from CVS coupon printer = Cheap m&m's!

Today, I went to do my CVS deal scenarios for this week, and I scanned my card at the coupon printer and here are the coupons I received:

On my husband's card I got
  • Save $1 on any 2 CVS/pharmacy first aid items
  • Save $1 on any CVS/pharmacy Hair Care items, excludes Trial Sizes
On my card I got
  • $5 off any purchase of $40 or more (woot!)
  • $1 off any CVS/pharmacy Brand Facial Skin Care
  • Save $2 on any $6 purchase of Gift Bags, Wrap or Bows
  • $3 orr Borghese Nail Color
  • Save $3 off of 2 Snickers, M&M's, or Dove bags, 8,5oz or larger

Always make sure to scan your card until the machine tells you there are no more prints available for you that day. I scanned my card and got coupons twice, not getting the "no more coupons" until the 3rd scan!

The Medium bags of m&m's (9oz) are on sale this week, 2/$4. I used the $3/2 coupon to make them $0.50 a bag. The new pretzel variety were included in the sale, and these are sooo good, I was thrilled to get them at such a low price!

Free Cacique Panty at Lane Bryant through May 19

Stop into any Lane Bryant store before May 19 and get a free Cacique panty in black or white, no coupon needed! More details available here.

Free Redbox Code from Stouffers

Become a Stouffers Dinner Club member and instantly you'll receive 100 points in your account. You can then click on "Earn Points", and take a quick survey to earn another 100 points.

You can redeem 160 points for a free Redbox Rental!

Free 50 Subway points = free 6" sub!

Right now, you can get 50 points added to your Subway Customer Loyalty card on your next purchase (enough for a free 6" sub!) by texting your card number to 35562 on your cell phone.

Doing this subscribes you to weekly texts, but you can unsubscribe easily by texting STOP to the same number.
You can pick up a Customer Loyalty Card at any Subway location!

Menu Plan Monday

I typically do my menu plan for 2 weeks' meals, and I do a major grocery shopping trip every 2 weeks. I do coupon-based shopping each week at Publix and CVS, and stock up on as many items as I have coupons for that are free or nearly free. Then, when I plan my menu, I try to focus on using as many items that I already have on hand as possible, and buy the rest of what I need at Aldi.
My current grocery budget for our family of 5 is $125/2 weeks, including diapers, personal care products, paper goods, detergent.. basically, anything the grocery store sells. I try to keep under $100/2 weeks, so that I have some money left over to play with if a great coupon deal comes up, or we want to splurge on some unplanned snacks during our 2 weeks between shopping trips.
This week, my family is driving to Virginia to see my mother-in-law graduate and receive her bachelors degree, so we'll only be home for 9 days. I made my menu based on those 9 days, and made my grocery list accordingly.

When I plan my grocery list, it helps me to use the Aldi Price Sheet I created. This way I have an idea of how much I'm going to be spending before I leave the house. Knowing this amount helps keep me from throwing unplanned items into my cart at the store, and lets me know how much I have remaining in the budget so that if I see an item at the store that I need but didn't plan on buying, I know if the money is available to purchase it.

This week's meals aren't very exciting, because I was trying to keep the costs low so we can use the extra money for our trip. And there are a few repeats because we're going out of town in the middle of the two week period, so we'll have some of the same meals before we leave, and then again after we get back.

Here's this week's menu (keep reading to see the shopping list with Aldi prices)

  • Cereal
  • Toaster Strudel (stocked up 2 weeks ago for nearly free at Publix)
  • Pancakes with fruit sauce (made with frozen organic fruit stocked up on 2 weeks ago for nearly free at Publix)
  • Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches
  • Lunchables Subs (stocked up on for free at Publix last week)
  • Ramen cups (my 12 year old daughter's favorite)
  • Spaghetti and Meatballs: one pound of spaghetti noodles, one jar of pasta sauce, and a bag of frozen precooked italian style meatballs.
  • Meatball Stroganoff: 4 packets of brown gravy mix, prepared as directed and simmered with 8oz of sour cream, a package of original style frozen precooked meatballs, and a can of sliced mushrooms; served over a bag and a half of cooked egg noodles, with a side of canned peas.
  • Salsa Chicken: 3 large boneless/skinless chicken breasts, a jar of salsa, a cup of shredded cheddar, and 8 oz of sour cream; cooked in the crockpot and served over a pound of cooked elbow macaroni, and a side of canned corn.
  • Pineapple Brown Sugar Ham: A $4 turkey ham, cooked in the crockpot with a can of chunk pineapple and juice, and 1 cup of brown sugar. Served with white rice and a side of canned green beans.
  • Taco Pasta (recipe below)
  • Spaghetti and Meatballs (see above)
  • Meatball Stroganoff (see above)
  • 2 packages of frozen Salisbury Steaks with gravy, cooked as directed and served over white rice with a side of canned peas.
  • Frozen DiGiorno pizza and breadsticks (stocked up for free last week at Publix).

Some of the items for these meals (other than the ones I've already indicated above) I already have on hand: all the canned vegetables, elbow noodles, brown sugar, and canned tomato sauce and taco seasoning and ground beef for the Taco Pasta.

Here is my shopping list for the meals above (I always estimate up on the prices, and guess a little high for the items I don't know the price of):

$2, 2 sour cream
$5, 2 shredded cheddar
$4, turkey ham (sold by the pound)

$2, 1 cereal
$4, peanut butter and jelly
$2, salsa
$2, 2 lbs spaghetti
$2, 2 spaghetti sauce
$4, 3 egg noodles
$3, 3 lbs white rice
$4, 8 packets brown gravy
$1, 2 cans mushrooms
$3, box of ramen noodle cups
$2, pineapples
$2, 1 bread
$8, 4 meatballs
$4, 2 salisbury steaks

$54 total, estimated high. I still need to buy Pull Ups, shampoo and conditioner, and snacks for the trip, but there's plenty of money left over in the budget for those things!


Taco Pasta Recipe

(I got this recipe from one of the bloggers who posted on last week's MPM, but I didn't plan to be blogging about it so I didn't keep the link. If it was you who posted this recipe, thank you and sorry for not being able to credit you! :)

Taco Pasta

1 pound ground beef
1 package (1-1/4 ounces) taco seasoning
1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
1 package (8 ounce) shell macaroni, cooked and drained (I'm using elbow macaroni)
1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chilies
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

In a skillet, brown ground beef over medium heat.
Drain and add taco seasoning, tomato sauce, and green chilies.
Stir in cooked macaroni.
Place in a 9×13 pan.
Top with cheese.
Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until heated through.

For more ideas on planning your own menus, or to see what many others in the blogosphere are eating this week, hop on over to Menu Plan Monday at OrgJunkie.com!

CVS deal scenarios for the week of May 9, 2010

**If you're new to the CVS game this post won't make much sense to you. Go here first to read my Beginner's Guide to CVS and learn everything you need to know. Then read the rest of this post for tips on how to make the game work for you, too!

I haven't blogged in a while about CVS, because not long ago my family moved from Michigan to Florida, and sadly, there wasn't a CVS close enough to our new home that was reasonable to drive to to play the CVS game.

But to my extreme excitement, a CVS has been built about 2 miles away, and should be opening any day now!! So I am thrilled at the thoughts of rebuilding my future stockpile, and all the money I'll be saving in the future.

Because I'm starting all over, I planned some basic deals for this week, to build a little stash of ECBs to use next week. I'll be spending $3.48 oop, and I'll earn $8.99 ECBs, plus I'll have $17 worth of toothpaste, mouth wash, Kotex, and deodorant. What a great week to get back up on the horse!!

Here's are the 4 transactions I'll be doing this week. If you're new to CVSing, this would be a great week for you to get started, too! I'll be updating what I'll be buying each week, and you are welcome to do exactly what I do. It doesn't get any easier than that!!

Transaction 1:

$3.50, 1 Crest Pro-Health paste or rinse (earns $3.50 ECBs), limit 2
-$2 ECBs (I have these ECBs already from an online survey I took)

$1.50, earns $3.50 ECBs

Transaction 2:

$3.50, 1 Crest Pro-Health paste or rinse (earns $3.50 ECBs), limit 2
-$3.50 ECBs from previous order

$0.00, earns $3.50 ECBs


Transaction 3:

$4.99 1 U by Kotex pads, tampons, or liners (earns $4.99 ECBs), limit 1
$0.50 a candy bar or any other small filler item you want to throw in

-$1/1 U by Kotex printable
-$1/1 U by Kotex CVS printable
-$3.50 ECBs from previous order

$0.00, earns $4.99 ECBS

Transaction 4:

$4.98 2 Right Guard (earns $4), limit 2
-$3/2 Right Guard printable

$1.98, earns $4 ECBs


Total spent on all 4 orders: $3.48 (If you're just starting this week, the total for you will be $5.48, because I had $2 ECBs to start with)
Earns: $8.99 ECBs for next week

The out-of-pocket costs ($5.48 for you) this week is higher than it will ever be in future weeks. That's because this is the first week and you have no ECBs to start with. But next week you'll have a $4.99 ECB and a $4 ECB coupon to use towards next week's deals, and you won't have to actually spend real money again. You can just keep rolling your ECBs!

I'm Back!

It has been quite a while since I have blogged here. I got busy with 2 toddlers and a big move- from Michigan to Florida.
I had to get settled in to a new life in our new home, and sadly there was no CVS nearby or any of the grocery stores I was used to in MI, so I had to adjust to those too, so that I could continue to do my couponing and saving money for our family.

I finally feel settled, and the blogging bug has hit me again!

So keep checking back as I get back into my groove. I'll be continuing to post more regularly and I am eager to reconnect with my remaining readers and to welcome new readers as well!

Let's all go get those deals together!! :)