About Me

I'm a Utah mom, just trying to make ends meet. Several years ago, I was introduced to a new way of couponing. I've been addicted ever since. I have a hard time paying full price for anything anymore.

I love couponing so much, I decided to become a teacher for Grocery Smarts.

I teach free classes and show you how to get everything you need at the grocery store and still leave $$$ in your pocket. I'll also teach you the best ways to get and organize your coupons. The best part of the class is when I show you how to match your current coupons up with the current local sales - getting the most bang for your buck!

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June 30, 2009

How does my garden grow?

It's summer and blogging sometimes seems like the last thing I get around to doing. My kids are busier than ever and time seems to escape me. I wanted to blog about this a while ago and you know how it goes....it just didn't happen.
I guess I'm trying out the new "craze" in gardening this year - Square Foot Gardening. I asked my husband for these for Mother's Day and am very happy with the very managable gardens.

You have to know that my husband is a perfectionist when it comes to design (he's a graphic designer). I very much appreciate his time and careful planning as he laid this out. Because our yard is slightly sloped in this area, he wanted to remove the grass and build up the area in which the garden boxes sat so it would be level.

He placed the bricks just slighly larger than the boxes so that when he did edged it wouldn't ding up the wood around the boxes too much.

So not only did he lay the bricks he also got a piece of ply-wood to lay out over the bricks for support.
This had to be the most expensive part of the garden. The "dirt" is really 1/3 peat moss, 1/3 compost and 1/3 vermiculite (which can be a little expensive).

In total, I have 5 boxes. 3 of them are 4x4 and 6" tall and the other 2 are 2x4 and 12" tall.

I decided to do a mixture of flowers and produce. The deeper boxes are for my carrots and potatoes. I did some starts earlier in the season and some survived and some didn't (it's definatley trial and error this first go around).

I was pretty disappointed when we had nearly 3-4 weeks of non-stop rain in June. My plants did not die, but they weren't doing a lot of growing either.

This is my garden today.

Yes, I still have a few open holes that I need to fill. Some squares did not get planted and some were plants that did not survive. I also like the idea that you can plant every couple of weeks - notice my carrots. Half the box is growing and several weeks ago I planted 2 more squares and the little tops are just poking through (this way, I don't have a million carrots all at once - each square has 16 carrot plants). I was quite surprised at how well my potatoes have done. I think they are on steroids (they are the plants that have nearly overgrown the box).

Potatoes on steroids - BTW - does anyone know when you pick potatoes? My gardens were planted on Memorial day (end of May and these are Lasoda Red potatoes).

This is the trellis that my husband added for me. The trellis needs to be placed on the north side of the box with the climbing plants in those squares (north side because it won't shadow the other plants). I've already started weaving my tomato plant through the squares. I found some great trellis netting with 7" squares that will easily allow me to stick my hand through and pick any produce that may be growing. It is also very strong and will hold up through the Utah winters and summers.

I will continue to take pictures of my garden and post how my garden has grown. I'm no expert gardener by any means, this is certainly trial and error for me. I figure that I will learn a few things along the way and will be better at this next year.

A special thanks goes to my husband who worked hard to make my gardens sturdy, level and beautiful! So far, besides the flowers I've planted broccoli, tomatoes (1 cherry and some big ones - can't remember the names), 1 Jalapeno pepper, 2 green peppers, 2 celery, 1 mint plant, 1 cilantro, 1 lettuce, 3 cucumbers, 1 eggplant, 1 yellow squash, a bunch of carrots and potatoes.

Anyone interested in Square Foot Gardening - can check out the book I posted in the beginning or check out Mel Bartholomew's site.

June 25, 2009

The sweetest treat

Okay - who doesn't love to win something, sometime? I was the lucky winner of this cutest cupcake bouquet from Sugar Mama's Cakery.

There were 6 cupcakes (I say 6 because 3 of them got eaten before I could quickly snap a picture). They are almost too pretty to eat, although my kids did inhale them. They even had a special jello filling to make it taste that much better! They were delicious and they even came in the cute green pot. I feel bad that I didn't get a picture when they were in the pot - they were so pretty.

Can you imagine how cute something like this would be at a baby/bridal shower or to get a bouquet for a birthday or just because.....? I would be thrilled.

I check in with Sugar Mama's Cakery frequently to see all the fun things they've done. You should definatley check them out - especially if you have a special occassion coming up where a sweet treat would come in handy.

Even better.....this is the giveway they are doing for the month of June. Make sure to visit their site and leave a comment - who knows, you could be the lucky winner of this cute purse cake. How fun for a birthday, GNO, bunko party, even a little girl's party.

I want to send a huge thanks to Jody, her mom and sister for picking me as May's lucky winner!

June 19, 2009

Another quick reminder - free coupon class on 6/24

I just wanted to remind you that I'm doing a free coupon class on 6/24/09 at the WSU West Center (5627 S 3500, Roy, UT) at 2:30 pm.

WSU has asked that you register through this site (Feed your family on a shoe string budget 6/24). Walk in's are also welcome.

I hope to see you there!

June 17, 2009

Rolling it over at Albertsons

Hopefully you took advantage of last weeks Albertson's sale, especially the General Mills sale.

Once again I procrastinated until the very last minute. Yes, I was there at 11:00 pm on Tuesday night. I thought I would be the only one there, and was pleasantly surprised to see about 6 or 7 other ladies doing the same thing. It was actually kind of fun because we were all helping each other find the specific sale items.
Okay - drum roll please....... I spent a total of $63.64 and saved $122.98. WOOT! WOOT!
It worked like this, Purchase #1:I had to spend $25 (before coupons and Albertsons savings) on General Mills products in order to get $10 back (Catalina at the register).
I bought:
4 Fiber One cereals
1 Plain Cheerios
6 Cheerios with crunch
(After all my coupons and Albertson's savings card I spent $21.25 and saved $28.87 and earned $10. I also used 1 set of *Albertson's double coupons).
Purchase #2

I took the $10 from my first purchase and bought:
2 Betty Crocker Stickerz fruit snacks
2 boxes of Cheerios
2 Yoplait Gogurts
2, 1/2 gallon Breyers ice cream
3, 6 pks of Coke
(I spent $7.09 and saved $40.73 and earned another $10. I also used another set of *double coupons).

Purchase #3

4 jars of Ragu spaghetti sauces

2 jars of Skippy peanut butter

6 boxes of Betty Crocker fruit snacks

(I spent $9.16 and saved $29.58. This earned me another $10 and they let me use another set of *Albertson's double coupons).

Purchase #4

2 pkgs of Yoplait Kids yogurt

2 8oz Kraft singles

1 jar of Ragu spaghetti sauce

1 gallon Albertsons oj

4 pkgs Bar S Chicken Jumbo franks

8 DiGiorno Flatbread Melts (raincheck from last weeks sale)

(I spent $26.14 and saved $23.80. I did not earn another $10 because the yogurt and Ragu were the only GM products in this purchase and it did not total $25).

*Each store determines how they will allow you to use the double coupons. Check with your store before assuming you can use more than one set*

This is how I got to the above savings. Sometimes these sales take a little planning ahead of time. In my opinion, it's worth the planning for the savings on the other end.

June 15, 2009

A hearty basket this week

I'm a few days late in posting what I got from my co-op, Bountiful Baskets. I was truly impressed with the quantity this time. I got there early to help distribute and we had so much stuff that it took us until about 7:20 am before we were ready for everyone to start picking up their baskets. They usually start picking them up at 7:00 am.
Anyway here's what we got this week.
16 bananas

8 oranges

3 yellow squash

2 broccoli

1 celery

2 bags of carrots

12 apricots

1 head of romaine lettuce

2 small cantaloupes

7 apples

8 cucumbers

9 plums

I think this basket easily weighed between 35 and 40 lbs. It was quite heavy. I also bought the following:

1, 16lb box of cherries

5 loaves of Honey Wheat bread

So far the cherries have been hit and miss. They are either just right or kinda squishy and some are bland. I guess that's what you get from the store too. I think I'm going to freeze a bunch of them. The bread has been wonderful though. I just can't say enough good things about the bread. I'm really glad I bought some.

If you'd like to know more about the Bountiful Baskets co-op, click on this link and it will take you to an earlier post I wrote with more details.

June 10, 2009

Albertsons Jackpot

I wanted to take advantage of the last day of Albertson's Kraft sale. I was procrastinating this week but, I'm really glad I did because I saved a ton!

I spent $37.01 and saved $116.27!
Schedule a class with me (callmestacy@yahoo.com , 801-589-3946) or come see me at WSU West Center (5627 S 3500 W, Roy, UT) on 6/24 @ 2:30 pm to see how you can do this too!

2 pkgs Angel Soft TP
5 Bayer Asprin (10 ct - FREE)
3 boxes of Bagelfuls
2 bottles of Country Time Raspberry Lemonade
2 boxes of Planters peanut bars
2 boxes of Maple & Brown Sugar cereal
5 California pizza's (individual size)
4 boxes of Mini Wheats
8 bags of Kraft cheese
1 8pk Coke
Most of this will be put into the pantry as a "Stock Up" item. I love being able to add variety to my pantry and not have to spend a lot for it. I used my double coupons and took advantage of the $3.00 back for every $10 I spent on Kraft products.

June 9, 2009

A new Geo Trax DVD - free

Click on this link to order Steamer and Samuel Save the Day. My kids absolutely love these and best of all they are free!

June 6, 2009

Want a little free Coldplay?

Tonya, sent me this great tip. She sent me this link to Coldplay's website where they will let you download some of their music for free. You need to provide them with your email and that's it. It looks like some of their best of stuff. Who doesn't enjoy a little free Coldplay?

Thanks Tonya, for hooking us up with some great free music for the summer.

June 4, 2009

Kents Anniversary Sale

I don't get the Kents ad, so I decided to go there today. I saw some postings about their Anniversary sale on Pinching Your Pennies and just had to check it out. So for those of you in my same boat (don't get the Kents ad) you can follow the directions below to pull it up.

Check this out, http://www.benewsjournal.com/. Along the top (just under the header) there are tabs, one being Kents Market. Click on that tab and it will take you to the ads. Warning....it does take a while to pull up. They are trying to change it from a pdf to a jpg so it will load faster.

Anywho.... I wanted to mention a few of their specials this week. Their anniversary sale will go for two weeks. These sale prices go from June 3-9, with some of these same deals spilling over into the following week.

*Full Flat of Raspberries $11.95
*Strawberries $.99
*Kellogs Cereal (Asst. Mini Wheats, Apple Jacks, Corn Pops, Froot Loops and other select varieties) 6 for $8 with in-ad coupon (pick up an ad as you go in the store)
*General Mills cereal (variety) 4 for $10 - this was not in their ad, but I saw it walking through the store (for you couponers - don't forget your coupons SS 5/3 and SS 5/31)
*Doritos Tortilla chips B1G1 free
*Cream O' Weber (COW) Cottage Cheese $.88
*Yoplait Yogurt 10 for $4
*Cantaloupe & Watermelon $.19/lb
*1lb COW butter 2 for $4
*Country Farms Gallon milk skim, 1% or 2% are 3 for $5
*20lb box of Boneless skinless chicken breasts $29.80 ($1.49/lb)
*Top Round Steaks or London Broil $1.79/lb (this is about as low as I've seen this in a while)
*10lb bag of extra, extra, extra diet lean or extra lean ground beef $1.79/lb

I just listed a few specials, check out the ad link (above) or this link to Pinching Your Pennies for more specials.

Lastly, on both Friday 6/5 and Saturday 6/6, from 11 am to 6 pm they will have a bunch of fun activities for kids.

*$1.00 hotdogs
*free samples and giveaways
*Keebler cracker stacker contest (noon to 3 on Sat)
*free Pepsi drinks
*Chester Cheetah, Trix Rabbit, The Pillsbury Doughboy and Mr. Milk Chug will be there giving away treats
*free balloons
*free fudge brownies on Friday
*free Jumbo cake donuts on Saturday
*free Meadow Gold ice cream (mini cone)
*free bag of groceries given away to lucky winners
*free Twinkies, 1/2 pints of COW chocolate milk, Frito Lay Chips, Kelloggs rice krispie treats, Little Debbie oatmeal cream pies and Pace Frozen Juice Bars will also be given away those two days

When Kents has a good sale, they really have a good sale. Who knows, maybe I'll see you there this weekend!

National Doughnut day @ Krispy Kreme

Drop into your local Krispy Kreme for National Doughnut Day on June 5th. This year, Krispy Kreme will once again be giving away a free doughnut of your choosing on that most delicious of days to every customer that visits a participating Krispy Kreme store.

June 3, 2009

Grocery Smarts News and a free class on 6/24/09

Grocery Smarts is expanding our services. Yes, we're growing!!!! If you've got friends or relatives interested in saving big bucks and they live in Southern California, Eastern Washington, Nevada or Idaho click on the links below to get started.

Southern California

Eastern Washington



I will also be teaching a FREE coupon class on June 24th at 2:30 pm. It will be held at the Weber State University West Center (5627 S 3500, Roy, UT) and is open to the community. Come and let me teach you how to save between 40% and 60% on every shopping trip. I will introduce you to the FREE Grocery Smarts website and how to keep your coupons organized. It will be a good time! I hope to see you there.

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