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Shop Amazon – Give the Gift of Amazon Prime “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”
My family loves to eat yogurt, but I’ve ran into a couple of problems with the pre-flavored yogurts available at the store.
First off, they are getting too stinkin’ expensive for my taste! Second, there is a ton of sugar, artificial dyes and extra junk I can’t even pronounce added into most of them, and I’m not too crazy about that when I’m trying to make a healthy choice by eating yogurt in the first place.
So, being the penny pinching peach that I be 🙂 , I decided to start experimenting with making my own flavored yogurt, starting with the big (and much cheaper!) tubs of plain yogurt.
The first thing I tried was a recipe I found for chocolate chip cookie dough yogurt. It was just a couple of scoops of plain yogurt (Greek or regular works, although the recipe asked for Greek), a couple of scoops of creamy peanut butter, a sprinkling of vanilla extract and a small handful of chocolate chips. It was surprisingly good!
Next, I used some of my son’s baby food to flavor some of that same plain yogurt. Both of my children were crazy about it! It actually tasted very similar to the store bought fruit flavored yogurts, just slightly less sweet because there was no sugar added. This one is 100% healthy and sugar free, which is fantastic since too much sugar makes my munchkins act like they’ve been transformed into the Energizer bunny until all hours of the night. 🙂
Banana baby food and a generous dollop of peanut butter mixed into yogurt was a definite hit, with both my daughter and myself! Some other baby food flavors I’d suggest: strawberry banana, apple blueberry (sounds weird, but my kids loved that one), peaches, banana, apricot & mixed fruit…pretty much anything fruity that sounds yummy to you will work.
My husband brought me a yogurt mix treat the other day, bringing with it more yogurt mix-in inspiration. Try almond slivers, dark chocolate shavings or chips and shredded coconut. Can we say delicious? Ooooo, yeahhh! 😉
A winning flavor is mashed banana and peanut butter mixed together and then mixed into your yogurt.
Cinnamon, honey and raisins makes for a different twist, with flavors reminiscent of rice pudding.
Does anyone else flavor their own yogurt? What’s your favorite?
Black Friday week savings are AMAZING at CVS!!! There are over 30 freebies, and I was able to score quite a few of them. It’s really easy compared to usual, since they’re mostly free even without any extra coupons. There are even more terrific deals than I’m sharing, if you want to do some research and scan ads, but this was what was simple for me to take advantage of with two less than patient planning and shopping companions. I riproaring tickled with my bounty as is! 🙂
I walked into CVS with $13 ECB leftover from a previous shopping trip. I paid $21.93 out of pocket, have $12 in Extra Care Bucks leftover, and still have a $12.99 rebate to send in. That being said, I am eventually going to be paid $3.06 for buying $135.40 worth of great stuff!! Can anybody give me a “WOOHOO!!!”?? LOL My four year old is not very cooperative with searching for sale items, so I had her hunting for things and toting a basket, all with the goal of earning a (free) pack of gum if she was helpful instead of acting up. Yes, she earned her gum. Yes, that is the part of the trip she bragged about the most. That and the fact that she believes we saved enough money in this shopping trip to buy her most desired gift for Christmas. 🙂
So, to break it down:
$13 Extra Care Bucks walking in
$21.93 paid out of pocket
4 Transactions (I put some of the higher priced items on the first two purchases to carry the ECB to the next)
$12 Extra Care Bucks and a $12.99 rebate leftover
PAID $3.06 for taking these goodies off of their hands!!!
Here is your list of things you can buy for free, nearly free or even be paid to take home! I printed my list off and gave myself a rough list on the back of the main items to put on my transactions (I planned on 3) so I wouldn’t pay a ton out of pocket…
99¢ ECB wyb Ricola Extra Strength, 4 ct 99¢ Limit 1 Final Price: FREE
99¢ ECB wyb CVS Training Pants 2 ct or CVS Ultra Soft Cleansing Cloths, 12 ct., 99¢ Limit 1 Final Price: FREE
$3 ECB wyb (2) Starbucks Refreshers or Doubleshots 2/$3 Limit 1 Final Price: FREE
$2.37 ECB wyb Children’s Advil 1 oz., $2.37 Limit 1 If you can find an Children’s Advil coupon, this is a moneymaker. Final Price: FREE/MONEYMAKER!
$2 ECB wyb Right Guard Total Defense Deodorant, $2.99 Limit 1 Use coupons you can print at Swagbucks earning points or at coupons.com without signing up or earning points, plus you can ear Saving Star money on this. Final Price: Around 50 cents after Saving Star payment.
$12.99 ECB wyb CVS True Result Blood glucose monitoring system $12.99 Limit 1 Mine had a rebate in it to get the complete price back. Final Price: FREE or a $12.99 moneymaker
Colgate Total 4-4.2 oz., $3 Use $2.50/1 Colgate Total CVS COUPON Printer and there are Colgate coupons in prior papers, if you have them. Final Price: FREE or 50 cents
I was also able to get some bags of Christmas Reeses candy for pretty much free after their deals and stacking grocery & in store coupons. Supreme protein bars for the hubby were only about $1 each, which is less than 1/3 of the price, after in store coupons, Extra care bucks and a printed coupon. Sodas are 69 cents apiece, so I just threw a couple of those in. I wanted toothbrushes as stocking stuffers for the kiddos, and the Clifford ones you see were extremely cheap after in store coupon and Extra Care Bucks. The coupons on the protein bars and Reeses candy coupons are available on coupons.com and Swagbucks, as well.
What are you most excited about getting for free?
If you want to join Swagbucks or Saving Star, check out my posts on those programs:
In honor and appreciation of all former and current military and their families on Veteran’s Day, I thought I’d share a few of the well deserved freebies & discounts available just for the vets in celebration of their sacrifice and service. Please note that most will require a military ID or proof of former military service in order to be given, so have it ready when you go to claim your goodies. Some will give it to anyone wearing their uniform. I’d suggest that you call your local restaurant or store to see what proof of service they need before going. Share with your friends & family in the military, even if you can’t benefit from these deals. They deserve it! 🙂
Chilis- November 11- Free meal from select menu on November 11.
Golden Corral- November 11 only from 4-9pm, free drink and buffet for anyone who has ever served in the military.
Longhorn- Free Texas Tonions and non-alcoholic beverages from November 11-14.
O’Charley’s- Free meal from the $9.99 menu on Veteran’s Day.
Olive Garden- Free meal on November 11.
Outback Steakhouse- Free bloomin’ onion on Veteran’s Day. Also, they are giving a 10% discount on total check from November 12 through December 31!
Red Lobster- Free appetizer with military ID (taxes not included). Good November 11-14.
Starbucks- Free tall brewed coffee to veterans, active military and spouses on Veterans Day. Please call ahead to make sure your local Starbucks is participating.
David’s Bridal- 20% off of any dress for military brides or one marrying someone in the military through November 15. Make sure to see what proof you need if you are marrying a military man, since I doubt they just take your word for it.
Great Clips- Free haircut for veterans on veterans Day, or you can just stop in for your free haircut card to be used by December 31. A non-military person can pick up the card to be redeemed by a veteran later. They may be available on their Facebook page, as well.
Home Depot- 10% off up to a $500 purchase for veterans on Veterans Day.
JoAnn Fabric and Craft Store- 20% off November 10-15.
Lowes- 10% off for military and immediate family members on Veterans Day.
Meineke- Free oil changes for military and spouses on Veterans Day.
Red Roof Inn- During the month of November, a military ID will get you 15% off of your stay.
I would advise calling ahead to make sure your local restaurant or shop is participating in these specials, but most should honor them. If you are military, which freebie or discount is your favorite? If not, I’m again encouraging you to share this list with your friends and family who have served. It’s the least you can do!! 🙂
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.
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. 🙂
Have you ever had a great shopping trip planned revolving around certain high value coupons, only to reach the store and realize you didn’t actually bring aforementioned high value coupons? Well, maybe I’m the only one, but that has happened to me more than a couple of times! I hate it. I mean, I mega-seriously-deep-down DETEST when that happens! As a lifelong penny pincher, when I have a plan for some serious savings, and my own scatterbrained moment costs me some great bargains….ooooooo, it burns my butter, lemme tell ya! Thankfully, with my recent free upgrade to a smart phone, I’ve found a solution to many of these disappointing moments.
We were going to Party City to get a banner for our son’s upcoming first birthday, using a 20% off coupon I had found. Horror of horrors, we were nearly to the store when I went into my purse to get the coupon and realized I didn’t have it!! Well, I was pretty peeved, to say the least. However, I had a blessed “AHA!!” moment! I used my smart phone to search http://retailmenot.com for a coupon from Party City. Sure enough, there it was. I saved it to my phone’s main screen and headed into the store with high hopes. We got to the register, and it worked! They scanned my coupon right from my phone’s screen! My savings were…well….saved by the magic of technology!
Maybe everyone else has been using these smart phone dealimabobbers for ages, but I only got mine in the past couple of months. I am so thrilled when I’m able to use my new technology to help save money for our frugal family!
Moral of the story: If you have a smart phone, next time you forget your coupons at home, it may just save your savings, too. Now, if only I’d always remember that fact… 😉
Does anyone else forget her coupons and start kicking her own hiney?
Today was one of my fun little saving while shopping trips. 🙂 I know there are other great drug stores for savings. The truth is that, with two munchkins to take shopping with me, I usually choose one place for non-grocery couponing and one for groceries each trip. CVS is my primary non-grocery couponing spot. Ingles is my usual choice for groceries in our fairly small town area, since they double coupons up to 50 cents, give treats to the kiddos and are pleasant to shop with.
To prepare for this trip, I spent about half an hour this morning making my grocery list, browsing the sales ads and looking at the CVS coupons I had from my last trip. Next, I glanced over the coupons on a coupon site (one of the ones I use to print coupons from coupons.com while earning points toward gift cards) to see what was on there to go with the items I needed, the sales bargains this week, my 30% off coupon for non-sale items at CVS, and the CVS coupons I already had. I threw the coupons I intended to use at each store into their respective folded store fliers, stuck them both in my purse with my shopping lists, and off we went.
CVS was decent today. I had to get diapers, “needed” some sodas, and have been wanting some new serving spoons and such. The first two things were on my automatic list. The rest were dictated by good prices on things we do use, but didn’t absolutely have to have today. We got diapers, facial wipes, nail polish, makeup, sodas, kitchen serving utensils, and protein bars. Princess Peach was excited about the super sparkly nail polish. 🙂 I keep her little fingers and toes painted pretty colors all the time with the nail polish I get for pennies on the dollar or even free.
Total Spent? $17.50
Total Saved? $53.84
Percentage Saved: 75.4%
We also did our grocery shopping at Ingles, which wasn’t so much a couponing trip, but getting what we needed while using coupons on whatever we could. In other words, there were things we needed that I got even though there wasn’t a sale or a coupon on them. Ohhhhh, the pain! 😉 Seriously, though, I’ve made it clear I’m not extreme.
Total Spent? $27.10
Total Saved? $11.82
Percentage Saved: 30.3%
I’m also going to get 40 cents back on my SavingStar account for buying yogurt.
Like I said, this wasn’t my best saving trip, but it only took me about 30 minutes this morning with two munchkins crawling all over me to get everything together and head out. It took two hours to do the actual shopping trip, but that had alot to do with Baby pulling Princess’ hair, throwing stuff out of the cart and feeding them their snacks to survive the shopping time. 🙂
Diapered dude and discount diva proving frugal is cool!
Lately life has been moving right along at a busy pace, and I don’t always have time to prepare alot of dishes, desserts or anything special at all. This one dish meal is very simple to throw together, though, along with having some great coupons to go with it this week. You mix it up in the casserole dish, too, so clean-up is quick and easy, as well. It covers all of the food groups in that one dish, too, so…woohoo for health! On the days when my kiddos are more-than-usually underfoot and thinking my every moment revolves around their every sneeze and whim, one dish dinners are almost literally lifesavers. 🙂 What more could a busy person want from a hearty family dinner?
1/2 pound sausage, fried and drained
1/4 cup sliced black olives
1/4 cup sliced green olives
1 cup whole kernel corn
1 cup chopped canned tomatoes
1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
1 cup cubed Cheddar cheese
1 cup cooked white rice
~Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
~In a 2 quart casserole dish, combine all ingredients. Mix together well.
~Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes.