Sunday, April 13, 2014

Errand Saturday (long)

Saturday=errand day, and yesterday was no exception. My  morning started with emptying the waste baskets and then letting them soak in a bit of all purpose cleaner overnight, before scrubbing them out. With Spring cleaning on going, it's the small matters such as that as well as cleaning out the onion/potato storage drawer in the kitchen. It's a vented, pull out drawer that slides beneath a tall cabinet (I suspect was originally the cleaning pantry but it now has shelves in it so I store the tall bags of cat cereal as well as the Tupperware in there). I removed the drawer, cleaned it out of all loose dirt and onion skins (even though I keep an old dish towel in there, it gets surprisingly dirty), then washed it out with a soapy rag. Once I dried it out, a fresh, old dish towel was placed inside, along with a spare, vented storage basket I unearthed in the bathroom closet (now housing onions), and 5 lbs each of golden potatoes and red bliss potatoes went in behind it. We were running dangerously out of potatoes, I've been looking to get more for 2 weeks now. I spotted the aforementioned at Xpect @ $2/5 lb bag (same price per LB as 10 Lb bag @ Aldi) but these are fresh while the ones @ Aldi have already had eye sprouting on them. I feared that they would turn before we could use them up. Good feeling to have topped this up.

After folding the clean, dried laundry yesterday, 2 more loads were washed and hung to dry in what turned out to be 72 degree weather. Beautiful! Unfortunately, I had to do the errands. With this warm weather, the shorts shortage has become an issue for the twins. First search location has to be the second hand market.

Shop # 1: Deer Hill Thrift shop, where I bought 4 6 oz Pyrex glass bowls. Perfect for individual desserts such as Jello/Pudding if not yogurt that I can make up ahead of time, cover with plastic wrap and keep at the ready in the fridge. I already had 4, but we never seemed to have enough clean ones available. I have seen them at stores and on EBAY, but didn't want to spend the $5 asking price. I paid $1.31 with tax instead, proceeds going to church charity work. Perfect.

Shop # 2: Walgreen's: stopped in to take advantage of a coupon deal on Bumble Bee canned Alaskan salmon @ $2.50/can (Aldi's charges $2.69). I was also hoping to use a coupon for their label, black olives, but they were out. I got a rain check. : )

Shop # 3: Salvation Army: sadly, no shorts are even out. I asked a clerk and as another was nearby, she joined the conversation to state that they had yet to receive their shipment (from a warehouse I assume) but should have them in a few weeks. I was one of several customers asking about them. Instead, the shop is FULL of Winter clothing. I did end up finding a pretty, botanical print with a bit of purple in it (hyacinth bean) for my bedroom. One of several marked prints from Stamford, according to the label on the back. I paid $9.56 for this framed print, withtax. Since I was there, I also donated a tall kitchen bag of my clothing, getting a tax slip and crossing Goodwill off my errand list. I still have more to get rid of. It's on the to do list for this week.

Shop # 4: Xpect Discounts: picked up 2 12 packs of Pansey's @ $3.49, 2 flavored water drinks (Aquafina splash-had a BOGO cpn), 2 16 pz Kraft dressing (honey mustard and creamy Italian for Summer pasta salads-used a cpn), 2 Daisy cottage cheese (2 cpns), lb strawberries, large tub organic spinach, the aforementioned potatoes, a gallon of Hawaiian punch (cpn), Marzetti coleslaw dressing (cpn), Marzetti simply vinagrette (cpn), Grey Poupon (cpn), large can Stokely sloppy joe sauce ($1.09/ double can=a real bargain compared to Manwich), 36 oz (not a typo) Hellmann's mayo (bonus size) @ $1.99 after cpn-awesome deal!. I spent $37.06 cash out the door. I have to tally the flowers outside of that, but it gives some idea of costs. I saved $7.99 with single value coupons.  I also bought 2, 2 ct pkgs of spinbrush toothbrush replacement heads @ $16.99 but alternative resources cover that. Main reason I went here was for bread flour, they were out. : (

Shop # 5: Walmart-my least favorite store, but they had the Xbox for upcoming birthday boy's gift on sale. Turns out, they are out, they will be getting more, just don't know when. Prices in store were higher than on line. Looks like I'll order on line then. While there, I bought 1 box Kraft Deluxe mac n cheese dinner and an 8 oz block of Cheddar. I used coupons on both. Spend $2.93, saved $1.55 in single value coupons.

Store # 6: Stop n Shop: 3 marked down danish rings for Sunday breakfast (2 pecan, 1 raspberry), a pkg of onion, rectangular ciabatta rolls (I cut these into "hamburger buns") also marked down, marked down grinder rolls (thinking meatballs subs this week for lunch), 2 10 oz blocks Cracker Barrel Cheddar (store cpn plus a manufacturer coupon on top), French vanilla skim 1/2 and 1/2 quart (cpn), Hood cottage cheese (cpn), 4 Maia Greek yogurts (BOGO cpns), 3 Newman's own organic Greek yogurts (cpn), 4 1 lb blocks Sorrento Mozzarella (normally $5.99, on sale @ $1.99-awesome deal), 2, 2 lb tubs Sorrento Ricotta (also normally $5.99, on sale @ $2.99-great deal, so it looks like I'll be making some lasagna for the freezer this week while I am home), Trop 50 juice (cpn), Tropicana Farmstand juice (cpn), Birds Eye recipe ready (cpn), Birds eye steamfresh (cpn), 4 Bumble Bee albacore tuna @ $1, 2 4 lb bags Domino sugar (cpns), 5 lbs each bread flour and whole wheat flour, 5 cans Dole Pineapple (cpns), 2 lbs Florida crystals sugar (cpn), French's honey mustard (cpn), 2 Hungry jack hash brown potatoe mixes (cpns), Ocean Spray cran juice (cpn), 2 boxes crash n burn store brand granola bars @ $1.25, 4 ct pkg Scotts naturals TP (cpn), Dove Men's antidandruff shampoo (cpn), 2 boxes Tampax (cpn), Tresemme color care shampoo (cpn), asparagus $1.88/lb, organic Swiss chard, 2 Bumble Bee fzn shrimp dinners (previously gave a product review: normally $9.99/ea for a 2 person serving, these were on sale @ $5.99, then I stacked 2 $1 coupons on top, bringing this "treat" down to $4.99 x 2=$9.98 for a 4 person meal. Just add rice, a side veg. Very do-able.). I spent $80 cash, then $12.98 off of my debit card, so $92.98, saved $30.01 in double up to 99 cents coupons. Most coupon items were also sale items such as the canned pineapple on sale @ $1. After coupons, I paid 50 cents for 2 and 67 for 3 of them. Cheaper than the 89 cents Aldi's charges. We've really been relying heavily on canned fruit as the fresh isn't so fresh, and it's expensive. I was down to 1 week's worth of canned fruit.

Store # 7: Mc D's where I caved and got $1 iced tea, a value hamburger @ $1.19, a small fry @$1.39. $3.81 cash. Avoided a migraine, so worth it.

Store # 8: Aldi's: 1 box honey nut "cheerios", doz eggs, gal milk, 2 each: fruit cocktail/peaches/pears, bottle chocolate syrup, can sweetened condensed milk. $14.67 debit card

Store # 9: Dollar Tree: 4 boxes tissues, 4 19 oz cans baked beans,  4 ketchup, a new scrub brush with a handle that fits nicely into my arthritic hand. $13.32 debit card

Store # 10: CVS: 15 oz bottle Irish Spring "gear" men's body wash, 6 ct same "gear" soap, a pkg of cvs throat drops. Used rewards points of $2, a 25% off instore purchase coupon, 2 manufacturer coupons on the men's soap and wash that were both on sale. Paid $4.57 cash. I supposedly save $9.85 over the normal price. @@

So, I will need to do my maths and tally my receipts. I did well today, we are well stocked now, some areas were getting dangerously low or depleated. While some "fancier" items such as the steam bags, recipe ready bag, BB shrimp dinners and danish were purchased, I got them as cheaply as I will ever find them, so they dropped to "reasonable." Meat is getting more and more expensive. We will continue to eat less and less, I am afraid. Our diets have changed over the past 5 or so years, and continue to do so, in response to costs.

Once home, everything was put away. Just DD and I until late Mon evening (boys spending an extended weekend with Dad as they are on break), so burgers (recent marked down, and later fzn ones) on toasted onion ciabatta rolls, pkg recipe ready veg mix (asparagus, red pepper, peas, carrots)-very good by the way! I don't mind paying $1 for it, forget the usual price.  I normally stick to plain fzn veg when I do buy them, for economy. This was an unexpected bargain, by combining a sale plus a $1 off cpn.

Before it got too dark, I swept the front stoop, got out my 2 large planters and planted and then watered the Pansey's. 2 Spring floral flags grace the 2 front entrances as well. Looks nice, IMO.


young77 said...

All I can say is WOW! I'm looking for coupons today!!!!

Anonymous said...

You are the coupon queen! We are in the shorts hunt too. I keep hoping to see some on sale this week to put at lease 1 new pair in the Easter baskets.

Marcia in rural WNY said...

You are doing extremely well even with single count coupons. This week when I walked into the store, I swore that the first half dozen items I looked at were each $1 higher than the last time I bought them. Prices going up so quickly has everyone on edge, from the other blogs I'm reading. I am stretching meat farther these days--and since I'm on a low fat diet, doing some of it by simply reducing my portion size. Trying some new lentil recipes that I have stacked up waiting for experimentation, too. Beans are not a favorite with me but I'm eating more of the few kinds I do like. I want to make some roasted chick peas for snacks---they have to be more frugal than DS's favorite peanuts, which I do buy because "nuts make a good snack" according to most nutrition articles I've read. I almost NEVER buy anything that is not on sale these days, unless absolutely essential, and my main store doubles coupons up to 99 cents. Also getting annoyed with some low value coupons I see lately---Tide offering 20 cents off when the size I normally buy is $11.99 on sale? It's almost insulting!
Still convinced cooking from scratch and using up all leftover bits and pieces are the biggest moneysavers. Although, I do insist on eating out once a week for a break for me--we are retired and can afford it, and I deserve it!!

Melissa Tammy Foley said...

You did an awesome job! Have a lovely spring break.

Belinda said...

Wow, You've been super busy, Carol. Looks like you picked up some good deals as well. I agree with you on the meat, as you know, I can't remember the last time we had a roast here. And even then it was pork, but I've read in the news recently that pork prices are going up too and bacon will be more costly in the future. Best to continue to do without and try to stretch our resources the best we can. :)

CTMOM said...

My source for coupons is the Sunday newspaper insert, and occassionally printed from an on-line source. Coupons have been small in value for the past year or so, and short dated, which is a real nuisance. 20 cents off Downy for instance, won't even cover the tax!

CTMOM said...

I cringe when I enter a grocery store. Woman in front of me appeared to be doing her weekly grocery shopping-$252 and she didn't bat an eyelash. I hunt and cherry pick the deals, eat seasonally, home cook mostly from scratch, etc and it keeps getting harder and harder. Meat is beyond ridiculous right now.: (

CTMOM said...

I first noticed a sharp increase in bacon prices about a year ago. I aim to keep it at $3 or less/lb or we do without. What I do have is used mostly as a seasoning, and naturally, I reserve the bacon fat in a jar in the fridge.