I am getting ready to launch my newsletter, and would like to encourage you to subscribe! I promise it won’t be spammy! I’ll make sure you don’t miss out on any of my blog posts, as well as sending you a weekly newsletter with additional savings and coupon codes to my affiliate programs that I will share exclusively with my subscribers!
So, you have no money to spend for Christmas? You’re not the only one!
This year has been one of getting extremely creative and being very wise with very little. Christmas has just upped that to a whole different level!
I have been putting off buying Christmas candy for my kids’ stockings. I just didn’t have extra money and they are always with me, anyway. The other day my husband kept the two older kids after we figured out our grocery budget, so I could get a break and concentrate on shopping. I’d waited almost two weeks to go for anything other than a gallon of milk and some bananas, because I could cook with what I had and we didn’t have the money for more. I wanted to get my babies some candy for their stockings! They expect candy canes and chocolate, so I wanted to at least get one package of each. I set my budget at a whopping $1.00 maximum, and was confident I could do it. I only had change in my purse and wasn’t using my debit card before I hit the grocery store, so that was it.
“Penny Pinching Peach is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com”
Need to make your own candy with your tight budget? Check out this book that is as low as free, and includes many candy recipes!The Ultimate Christmas Recipes
I carefully planned out my deals and stackable coupons and headed into CVS. With thoughtful selection and mental mathematics, I did it!! I was able to get two bags of two different flavored Hershey’s kisses, a pack of candy canes AND two plastic candy canes filled with gummies! My total savings was- wait for it- 100%!!!! I handed the cashier the 38 cents of tax that wasn’t paid by my overage (the tax itself was supposed to be $1.20) and couldn’t stop myself from exclaiming “Yay!!! I had nothing in my budget for Christmas candy, so thank God for coupons and bargain shopping!”. She laughed and said “That is awesome!”.
Moral of the story? God will provide, positive thinking pays off….and penny pinching is AWESOME!!!
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Yesterday’s trip to CVS was a booming success. If you need diapers, sodas and/or dish soap, this is a great deal!
I bought three packs of Huggies diapers, three 12 packs of soda, two Palmolive dish detergents, a small mouthwash and a body mist.
Huggies and Palmolive were part of a deal where you get $10 Extra Care Bucks if you spend $30. I bought three packs of Huggies diapers at $9.49 each, used two coupons (if I had found the third that had fallen out in my purse, this deal would’ve been $2.00 better) and got two Palmolive dish soaps to complete the $30 minimum.
There is a coupon printing from the magic red machine for a travel size Colgate mouthwash, making it 50 cents.
I got a free body wash coupon for my birthday.
The 12 pack Coke products are three packs for $11, with $2 Extra Care Bucks for buying three packs.
I had $10 Extra Care Bucks left from a previous shopping trip a few weeks ago.
I also had a $5 off of $30 and $5 off of $15 coupons, one loaded on my card from an email and one a printed coupon, which both were able to ring on this transaction.
Cash Out of Pocket: $14.57
Extra Care Bucks for Later: $12.00
Savings Percentage: 78 (not counting the ECB to use later)
If I hadn’t had a 4 year old acting like a lunatic at the register, I’d planned to use the $10.00 Extra Care Bucks from the diapers and dish soap to pay for most of the drinks, which is what I’d suggest you do. In that case, you’d have only $14.47 out of pocket, or $12.47 if you can get the three Huggies coupons, unless you come in with the Extra Care Bucks like I did.
Want to take advantage of this deal? I’ll tell you where to get the Huggies coupons. Just make sure when you go in CVS to go to the red coupon printer for the in-store coupons. 🙂
If you want to earn points while printing these coupons, like I did, you can do so by joining Swagbucks and printing the coupons there. You can do so by following the link here:
If you don’t want to join the program and earn points toward gift cards or other great items just by printing coupons you are going to print either way, you can just follow the link below to simply print the Huggies coupons, although I am only seeing coupons for Slip-ons and Overnights, and I’d printed for regular ones on Swagbucks a few days ago:
The mask & cape were gifts purchased with Mommy’s rewards programs
This post has been updated to add some tricks I’ve learned since I originally posted this last year. I hope that you will enjoy Swagbucks as much as I do! Please follow my referral code at the end to join and reap the benefits of this awesome program!
I want to share one of my very favorite points earning programs with y’all! Swagbucks is easy to use, and the points add up very quickly. I actually paid for most of my daughter’s 4th birthday presents using Amazon gift cards that I earned through Swagbucks and SavingStar by doing things that I would do with or without rewards programs!! I got over $35 worth of adorable gifts for my daughter from Amazon, with only $6 out of pocket expenses after using the gift cards I’d saved up from those two programs! Talk about doing the penny pinching mama dance!! 🙂 I’m already racking up points to use for some of my Christmas shopping in a few weeks. (There are other pay-outs, but the Amazon gift cards are my favorites.)
By now I’m sure you’re wondering how it works, right? Well, let me walk you through the basics…
450 points can be exchanged for a $5 Amazon gift card. There are other payouts, including Paypal payments, gas cards, gift cards to many other popular stores, travel expenses or items in their own Swagbucks store, but this is the only one I’ve used and a simple reference for the value of the points you’re earning through your activities. It is also the best value I have found.
You earn random points by using Swagbucks as your search engine instead of one of the conventional search engines like Yahoo or Google. Just today, I got 10 points for doing a search for photo coupon codes using their site. It pops up when you do the search if you got a code, then you just type it in and enter and it is added to your account balance toward your next payout. Easy peasy!
You can shop through their shopping link with many online retailers, and earn a designated amount of points for every dollar spent. The average points per dollar seems to be from 2 to 7 points, from my observation. This is great if you are doing online shopping already! I earned almost enough for a $5 giftcard just by clicking through their links to order ink for my printer a couple of months ago. I was going to order it, anyway, so that was free money to use for my daughter’s gifts later. 🙂
You will earn 10 points for every coupon that you print and redeem through their coupons link. These are pretty much the same coupons that you get from coupons.com, but you’re getting rewarded for using them. If you’re like me, and use alot of coupons to stretch your budget, this is an awesome way to rack up those rewards quickly! Sometimes you are also entered into sweepstakes for every coupon you print. The other day when I was printing coupons for diapers and groceries, I was also being entered into a sweepstakes for $250!
Swagbucks frequently releases “Swag Codes” that you can enter in a special box in the top of your screen for bonus points. These are usually only good for a short period of time. For example, today there was one that was only good until 5pm EST, and I earned 3 points just for entering “Wagbucks” into the little magic box up there. My favorite site for keeping up with the codes is .
You can also install a tool bar, which I have chosen not to do, since I’m not too fond of tool bars in general. Every day they havea “Daily Poll”, which pays 1 point just for choosing your answer. You are able to participate in surveys, which will pay you a varying amount of points per survey. They have different “tasks” you can do for extra points, such as completing certain searches and informing them of the top 3 sites that show up. If you choose to join various programs using their links, you’ll earn points for doing that. There are video advertisements available at times to watch in exchange for more points. I’ve not taken advantage of all of these opportunities, but there are alot of different ways to keep adding onto that points balance if you have the time and inclination, most of them without spending one red cent! 🙂
Birthday girl. She had a ninja turtle/princess party. 🙂
Another way that you can earn points is through referrals, of course. If you like the program, you share it with others. If they join through your link, you will earn some points from that. If you’re interested in joining Swagbucks after my honestly enthusiastic review here, I’d be tickled pink if you’d use my referral link below. 🙂
*Penny Pinching Peach is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.
There are some great coupons available for printing right now if you have any diapered bottoms in your house! I’ve already taken advantage of using these with some sales last week, but didn’t do a post about it in time for y’all to take advantage of that bargain. I was very sick for a couple of weeks there, and neglected almost everything other than my children & husband, unfortunately. The coupons are good for awhile, and regardless of where you shop, they’ll rack up savings quickly. The best coupons are on Huggies diapers & wipes and Pampers diapers, but there are other baby coupons, as well.
I must admit. This recipe was born from the same place many of my “recipes” are born from: It was simply a case of me wanting something quick and easy to make to fill up my family’s grumbly tummies with ingredients I had on hand. I actually had leftover mac and cheese when I first made this, and just scrounged around the cabinets for something different to make a dinner-in-a-dish with my leftovers. My kiddos really enjoyed this Mexi-Mac, but if you don’t like any spice at all, you could probably do it with plain diced tomatoes or half plain and half the kind with chilies. It would be good with ground beef added, as well. There are so many ways this could be changed up, and it would still be yummy. It’s really just up to your family’s tastes and what’s in your cabinets that day. I’m the queen of playing with recipes to make them work for my family better, or just to use ingredients I don’t have to run out and buy. 🙂
1 10 ounce can Rotel mild green chili and diced tomato
1 16 ounce can black beans
1 box mac and cheese, prepared according to the instructions on the box
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Mix Rotel, beans and mac and cheese together in a 9X13 baking pan.
Sprinkle cheddar cheese on top.
Bake for about 20 minutes or until everything is warmed through and cheese is melted.
Do you have any dishes that were inspired by leftovers? Does you family eat leftovers or turn up their noses to them? I know some folks hate leftovers, but we hate wasting ours! We often eat them just reheated, but almost as frequently we have leftover makeovers. Sometimes you wouldn’t even know what the original meal was. Yep, I’m that good! 😉
There are no coupons for these specific ingredients, but they are so inexpensive that it almost doesn’t matter. There is a coupon for frozen Hanover beans here, if you want to try those, though: http://www.coupons.com/coupons/Food-Coupons-107/
There is another greatdiaper deal going on at CVS this week, just in time for me to re-stock on diapers for my little Peanut! 🙂
If you buy $30 of certain items, including Huggies, you get $12 in Extra Care Bucks back. I bought three packs of Huggies at $9.49 apiece and one container of wipes for $3.00. I had three $2.00 off Huggies coupons and a 50 cents off Huggies wipes coupon from this past Sunday’s paper and one $5 off any $20 worth of Huggies products from CVS.
I used the ECB to stock up on sodas with the deal they have going for three 12 packs of Coke products for $10 with a coupon from the magic red machine and get a couple packs of M&Ms as a treat.
My total out of pocket between the two transactions was: $22.63
My savings: $41.98
Percentage saved: 65%
I could’ve done better had I bought things I had coupons and a sale both on, but I only bought things that I wanted that were on sale. I didn’t have time to plan more than what I had to.
The Huggies products, though, worked out to $2.50 each!! AMAZING!! 🙂 I wrote this post Thursday, minus the numbers, with my baby sleeping on me, and had things happen to prevent me from making it to the computer to complete it in a timely manner. This deal is probably expiring tomorrow, so hurry on out!
That’s a pretty amazing deal, if you ask me! It was so easy that it only took five minutes to clip and write my list, and no time at all to shop. I was able to run into CVS alone while the kiddos and hubby waited in the car without coming back to cranky people, and that’s saying it was pretty stinkin’ quick. 🙂
I was holding out for another good diaper deal, and this one came just in time. 🙂 Who else is going to take advantage of this?
This is a treasured family recipe, dating back at least to my great-grandma. My mom told stories of going every Sunday to her grandma’s house for this Ritz cracker chicken and a good time with her huge, close-knit clan of kinfolks. This was one of her stand-by meals for our family growing up, and one we looked forward to every time. When I was dating my now-husband, I fixed this chicken for him. He had a fit over it, and insisted on taking me to his parents’ house and having me fix it for him. Maybe it brought on a proposal? 😉 He requests it from time to time, and my little Princess Peach and her baby brother are already in love with what she also calls Grandma’s Special Ritz Cracker Chicken. She thinks it is a “recipe from Heaven”, though, because it is so yummy and she knows it is a recipe I learned from her Grandma, whom she never met ’cause she went to live in Heaven before Princess Peach was born. This recipe has so many good memories attached to it for me, in addition to being delicious! I’m happy to share it with you, and hope you can make memories with your own family while feeding them this scrumptious chicken treat.
We don’t always make this with chicken breast, for the record. You can use any pieces you want. We just like breast meat better in our house, so I buy huge packs when we find it on sale. I also frequently add chicken liver, made the same way, in with our chicken breast. It stretches the budget, and the hubby and I love liver. I usually serve this chicken with mashed taters and either green beans, corn, baked beans or mac & cheese, but it would go well with just about anything. It is truly that good! 🙂
With no further ado…
Grandma’s Sunday Special Ritz Cracker Chicken
♥Grandma’s Sunday Special Ritz Cracker Chicken♥
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into large strips
1 sleeve Ritz crackers, crushed
1 stick butter, melted
1/4 tsp. black pepper
Preheat oven to 400 F.
Mix crushed Ritz crackers, melted butter and black pepper until all is moistened.
Coat each piece of chicken well with the Ritz cracker mixture, and place in medium sized baking pan.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until cooked through and lightly browned.
She was enjoying her chicken and wouldn’t stop to pose. 🙂
This recipe doubles well, and I usually do at least double the recipe so we can eat it
Chewing his chicken with a cheesy grin
multiple times. You just have to cook it a few minutes longer for the extra chicken. The pan shown is about double the recipe, for reference. We love it so much that we’re always happy to eat the leftovers the next day!
No coupons this week, but this is a super frugal main dish.
So, now that I’ve shared one of my favorite family recipes with you, what’s a dish your family has long term ties with? If you don’t have a recipe like that, what dish do you fix that appears to have the potential to become “Grandma’s special recipe” for your own future generations?
If you have munchkins who are still diaper bottoms, this is a great deal for you! I’m surprised to have deals this great so close together! Also, if you’ve not yet done the Kimberly Clark Rebate, this is a great opportunity to take advantage of that. (See my previous post about it here: https://pennypinchingpeach.com/2013/05/24/fantastic-diaper-deal-rebate-and-more/ ) You could get diapers and wipes for nearly nothing after rebate if you buy three packs of Huggies and $5 worth of Huggies wipes and haven’t done the rebate yet! 🙂
I did two transactions during a quick trip to CVS today. My main purposes for going in there was to take advantage of the diaper deal I’d put together and to get some ibuprofen we needed. There was also a good sale on Pepsi products. I went in with no Extra Care Bucks to spend. I spent $21.49 out of pocket and saved $36.60, with a less-than-impressive savings percentage of 63%. I don’t feel bad about that, though, because I had to get the Ibuprofen since we’d actually ran out, for once, and I bought a couple of extra sodas just to be able to use my Extra Care Bucks from the diapers so I wouldn’t have to use my money.
Pay attention here! :)The deal I’d recommend you going to get before the stores close Saturday is the one on Huggies diapers. I had a couple of coupons from Sunday papers for $1.50 off and printed one for $3.00 off (which you can find for at least $2.00 off on my facebook page https://www.facebook.com/pennypinchingpeachpage , where I sometimes share “bonus deals” that I don’t write entire blog posts about). CVS is running a deal where you get $10 in Extra Care Bucks when you buy $30 in select items. Huggies and Pull-ups are two of those items, and they are $10 a pack. They also have a coupon printing off for alot of people at the magical coupon machine in the store for $5 off a $25 baby purchase. After my coupons and the ECB, they only cost me $3 a pack!! Now, that is a diapering deal to dance about, y’all! 🙂
CVS shopping tip: When you scan your card at those lovely red coupon machines in the stores, don’t just do it once. Keep scanning it again until it tells you there are no more coupons available, which is usually after two or three scans. That makes you more likely to get all of their current special coupons, but it’s not something they’re going to tell you. Try it! You’ll see. It keeps printing new coupons for at least two scans! 🙂
Which items do you search for bargains on? For me, it’s obviously diapers and wipes, but also grocery items that we use consistently.
If you’re looking for a killer deal on diapers, I have got a red hot bargain for you!!! This is one of the best diaper deals I have ever seen, and I’ve been buying diapers for close to 4 years now. I’m shocked, because I haven’t seen this scenario on any of the multiple deal sites I’m subscribed to, even the ones specializing in baby bargains. This is amazing!! 🙂
Kimberly Clark is running a promotion where if you buy $35 worth of select products in one transaction, you can get a $10 rebate. Huggies products are one of the eligible products, but there are others for those of you who are not in need of diapers. You can check it out at the link at the end of this article to find out the details.
CVS has a deal this week where if you buy $30 worth of Huggies diapers, you get $10 in Extra Care Bucks back. Their large Huggies multi-packs of wipes are $6 apiece. In the Sunday paper this week were some Huggies coupons, in one of the two Smart Source inserts. One was for $2 off of one pack of Huggies Slip-Ons, and the other was for $1.50 off any pack of Huggies diapers. I had bought a double paper this week, so I got two packs of the slip-ons and one of the snug & dry at $10 each, using two $2 off coupons and one $1.50 off coupon. I also got one of the $6 multi-packs of wipes, although I had no coupons for that.
After the Extra Care Bucks, coupons and rebate come through, this deal will wind up at $10.50 for three packs of diapers and a 186 count multi-pack of wipes. That is just over $2.50 each!! If you have ever bought a pack of diapers, you know this is beyond a terrific bargain! Hurry!! The CVS sale is only going on through tomorrow, although the rebate is available on purchases through the end of July!
I also got two coupons for $1.00 off any Wet & Wild nail, lip or eye products in the same Sunday paper, so I was able to get two nail polishes for absolutely free at CVS! This would work at most other stores as well, since they usually have polishes at 99 cents each.
CVS has another noteworthy promotion I took advantage of today, which is a 2 liter of Coke for 99 cents, along with a 25 cent off coupon at the magical coupon printer in store, making it only 74 cents for a bottle of Coke! There is a limit of one, so I wouldn’t make a special trip just for this, but it’s a great deal.
Blissful sleep in discount name brand diapers
My husband was letting me run into the store quickly with the baby while he took our little girl with him to pick up a part for a repair, so this had to be a simple and planned trip. There are alot of other good deals this week at CVS, especially if you want makeup, but I haven’t had the time or need to take advantage of them all. If you are making a trip to CVS, I’d advise taking all of your makeup coupons with you this week, as they have some great promotions and in-store coupons on several brands right now.
Is anyone ready to jump on this fantabulous deal?? I absolutely couldn’t pass it up! I saved enough on diapers and wipes to pay for an entire week of groceries on a week when I’m not having to super stock on anything. 🙂