Friday, February 26, 2010

A Font Custom Made with Your Handwriting for FREE!

I just downloaded all of the fonts from Kevin and's Fonts for Peas. They are super cute and FREE! Now I wouldn't recommend downloading all the fonts unless you know how to delete fonts. I'll have to figure that one out, because now I have too many fonts. There is a button on the side bar that you can click to download all of them. Make sure you read the directions on how to do it here. If you love your handwriting or someone else's, you can send her a handwriting sample and she'll create a font for you for free! If you click at the top of the page on "free scrapbook fonts" there are even more fonts you can get for free. They also have plenty of free advise on how to change your blog on their regular blog. She's self taught in HTML! Amazing!
I get the cutest handwriting fonts at Fonts for Peas!
**3/12/10-the link in the text isn't working for whatever reason, and my computer won't let me fix it right now. So make sure you click on the button to get to the site.

OMGosh! I Bought Something Brand New!!!

I've been really good about buying either second hand clothes or clearance clothes for my kids. But today I bought an Easter dress for my 5 year old and paid $16.50 for it! I actually felt really bad about it. So, I guess that's a good thing. I've changed my way of thinking. Before I would just go to Walmart or Target and buy what ever I needed for them. It was just easier. I also bought my three year old a dress for Easter a few weeks ago, but it was only $7 so I really didn't feel all that guilty. But I'm keeping my receipts, just in case I find something cheaper between now and then. But I don't know. These dresses are really cute? And it's so hard to find dresses with sleeves. Even brand new. Even here in Nebraska for Christmas, my choices were limited. I was really surprised that most of the Christmas dresses were sleeveless. But I guess it doesn't really hurt to splurge here and there, right?

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Another Bill PAID!!!

Well it's official. Our van has been paid off! Man, I'm good! All I had to do is TOTAL THE VAN!!! Yep, if you haven't heard, we wrecked the van on our way to New Orleans (from Nebraska) to visit family. We drove all night and at five o'clock in the morning, I slid on ice in Jackson, Mississippi and totalled the van. Yes, I was driving! Of course! And it makes total sense that I had to leave Nebraska and slip on ice in Mississippi! So, what a great start to our vacation. We were three hours away from my parents house and luckily, my dad had spent the night at my brother's apartment which made him a tad bit closer. But when my dad was halfway we realized we all weren't going to fit in their SUV. So my mom borrowed a friend's Expedition and came and got us. She so graciously lent us her vehicle for the week too, so we all could fit and go places together. But man what a gas guzzler! So anyway, we had to rent a van to get back to Nebraska and we're all safe and happy to be in our own beds!

Luckily our van was worth what we owed on it. About 2 1/2 years ago, we financed 100% and the extended warranty. So we actually financed more than what it was worth. We even get new car seats out of the deal! (car seats and seat belts are one time use items, so if you ever get in an accident, make sure your insurance replaces the seat belts and car seats).

So, now what are we going to do? Well, when we got home, Sunday night we tried to fit the two car seats and booster seat into the back seat of the car and they fit! We just need to buy a seat belt extender so my daughter can reach the buckle. So since my husband works in the small city that we live in, we are not going to get another vehicle. And when the weather gets better, he can ride his scooter. The tentative plan is to get the credit card paid off (which will be paid off soon with our tax rebate) and we are going to try and get my student loans paid off which will hopefully be in a year. And then we will hold off aggressively paying down our debt and start saving for another van. That is, if I can convince my husband to start trying for a fourth. If we decide not to, then we can deal with the car and just continue paying down our debt.

Hospitals PAID 7/09
Credit Card #1 PAID 9/09
Credit Card #2
Auto PAID 2/10
My Student Loans
Hubs' Student Loans
Rental House Mort.**

Total Debt:

**we owned our own home and had to move and decided to rent it out. We are currently renting until we know where we want to settle down permantly.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Read "The Total Money Makeover"

If you are tired of paying creditors and want to live a better life financially, you need to read Dave Ramsey's "The Total Money Makeover." I had my husband pick this book up for me at the library right before our vacation last week and I read it in 2 days! He shows you how to create wealth by using the income you already make. Which includes getting out of debt and paying for everything in cash, even vehicles! This isn't a get rich quick scheme, but a way to show you how to build a better life for yourself using what you have. It's really motivated me to get out of debt as fast as I can! We are going to do whatever we can to get there. We totalled our van a week ago and luckily we're getting enough to pay it off. So now that we know our booster seat and two car seats will fit in the back of the car we are going to just use the ONE car for now. That's how extreme we are going and how serious we are about it. Although I have been aggressively paying down our debt for almost a year now, this book has really motivated me to get rid of our debt and as fast as we can. I'm sick of the bills and the interest! It kind of makes me mad at myself for some of the choices I've made in the past. Live and learn I guess.

The Dave Ramsey Show on Fox Business Network via
The Dave Ramsey Show on Radio
Have you read this book? Leave a comment and let us know what you think.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Shopping Lists: 2/21-2/27/2010

Believe it or not, these lists have taken up a huge part of my life every Monday. And a lot of times I can get them done. Then I thought, "Why am I doing this?" The lists are already done. So I've decide to share what lists I like every Monday and a few highlights from each.

*Right Guard deodorant– As low as $0.45 each after coupon
*Excedrin (20-24 count)- 0.50 each after coupon
*Buy 1 Goody Ouchless Elastics- FREE after coupon and Register Reward

Cincinnati Cents
*Baker's Corner Pancake Shake-Ups (5 oz.), $0.99
*Bremer Select Vegetable or Chicken Lasagna (40 oz.), $4.99

In Good Cents
I usually like Pocket Your Dollars list, but she didn't have it up as of right now.
*Dole Baby Spinach, Spring Mix, or other bagged salad – $0.75 each wyb 2 after coupon
*Large Gala or Red Delicious Apples, $0.99/lb
*Market Pantry Potatoes Russet or Red – 5 lb bag, $1.99
*General Mills Cereals – As low as $1.75 each after coupon
*Charmin Big Roll Bath Tissue – 36 pk, As low as $13.99 each after coupon

Monday, February 8, 2010

Sales and Deals to Look Out for in February

National Canned Food Month-
Canned Veggies
Canned Fruit
Canned Tuna
Canned Beans
Cherry Pie Filling

National Hot Breakfast Month Promos-
Kellogg's, General Mills, Post, Quaker, etc
Hot Cereal
Syrup, etc

Heart and heart-healthy products
(American Heart Month)
Aspirin, supplements, low cholesterol oils, and spreads, etc.

Westminster Dog Show this month-
Dog Food

Valentine's Day promos-
Chocolate (also Celebration of Chocolate Month)
Valentine's Candy
Condoms (also nation condom week)
KY, Monistat, etc
Hershey Kisses promos

Chinese New Year Promos-
Soy Sauce
Canned Water Chestnuts, bamboo shoots
Crunchy noodles
Stir Fry

Clearance Items:
Valentine's Day Candy
Candy, Chocolate

Valentine's Day
President's Day
National African American Heritage Month
Chinese New Year
Women's Heart Health Day
Groundhog Day
Susan B Anthony Day

Other Promotions this Month:
Canned Food Month
Great American Pies Month
National Cherry Month
National Children's Dental Month
National Fiber Focus Month
National Grapefruit Month
National Hot Breakfast Month
National Snack Food Month
Various Potato Occasions

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Get Yourself Out of Debt Series @EADFL

I just got finished reading Engineer a Debt Free Life's "Get Yourself Out of Debt" series. It really helped to re-motivate me. They have managed to pay over half of their $200,000 debt in just a few years. They recommend some good books and shows to watch as well as a link to a "snowball" calculator to help you pay down your debt. It's a really good read and I really recommend you read it. You can pop in on their Old Navy chat room on Thursdays and ask Money Savin' Mama any questions you want. She's in there all day, but gets on and off throughout the day chasing a 2 1/2 year old and a new baby. But just leave a question and others might help you or when she gets back, she can help you.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Frugal Tip: Teaching Your Child to Read

Well this is kind of a frugal tip I guess. Last Spring, I used "Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons" to teach my four year old how to read. I have several friends who have used it and love it. I paid about $18 for it a couple years ago, but it now sells for $15 at Amazon and Barnes & Noble (right now it's about $15 at Barnes & Noble, but regular price is $17.60). I had bought the Hooked on Phonics for Pre-K and didn't like it and it was about $40 I think. And she wouldn't even be reading at the end of it. This is a parent version of the SRA system that is used in a lot of schools. In fact, it's the system that is being used at my oldest's school. And my sister said she remembers it being used when we were kids (but I don't remember). What I love about this book is that it's scripted for you. It even tells you how to correct your child. I had to adapt a little bit for my daughter, but not much. They claim that you can use this with a very bright 3 1/2 year old and any average 4 and 5 year old. And they also claim that lessons only take about 20-30 minutes and at the end they will be reading at a 2nd grade level. For my daughter, at the very beginning, the lessons only took about that long, but as we got further along, the lessons took longer. But I think it had something to do with my daughter. If it was hard she wanted to give up, and she's a very hard child to correct. She's never wrong! ;) And I think they are actually reading on a 2nd grade level when they finish the recommended reading list (not at the end of the lesson book). As "easy" as this book was, it was still very hard. But it was so worth it. My daughter entered Kindergarten this school year and was tested on a first grade reading level (we didn't finish the book list due mostly to our move). So it worked. What I love best about this system is that it teaches your child to sound out words. My daughter will see a word she has never seen before and as long as it follows all the "rules" she can sound it out! I'm amazed by this book and that I was actually able to teach my daughter to read. I'm a horrible teacher, so if I can do it, you can do it!

Don't forget: You can get the book for free if you search the web through SwagBucks or rate websites through iRazoo (by collecting "bucks" or points to exchange for Amazon gift cards).
Other teaching tools I recommend (but is not necessary for learning to read with this book):

Baby Einstein Alphabooks
My oldest learned her letters just after she turned 2 using these (she didn't even know the alphabet song yet)
Amazon ($12.95) & Barnes & Noble ($11.99 and it's on sale right now)
If you order through Barnes & Noble you can get a 4% rebate by ordering through Mr. Rebates or 8% through Shop at Home

Leap Frog Letter Factory
My oldest watched this for two weeks straight and learned her letter sounds, but you may have to correct a few. Like for R. They teach "eerr" and not "rrrr).
Amazon ($8.99)
The one pictured is the one I used, but it looks like they have a newer version. Maybe they corrected a few of their sounds. ???
(This is strictly my opinion. I was not compensated by any of these companies, nor have I recieved free products from them.)
Have you used any of these products? How did you like them?

Monday, February 1, 2010

Walgreens Deals 1/31-2/6/2010

Here are my picks of deals that can be found at Walgreens this week.
Prices may vary by region.
Freebies are in RED.
Post Shredded Wheat Cereal $1.00
Use $2/1 Post Raisin Bran, Shredded Wheat or Grape Nuts Cereal printable coupon
Final price: Free after coupon (buy two boxes and you’ll get both free)
This Weeks Registar Reward Deals:
Buy 1 Bayer Contour Meter at $14.99, Get $10 Register Rewards
Use $30/1 off Bayer Breeze 2 or Contour Meter from the 10/25 Red Plum insert (coupon’s value will be adjusted down to $14.99)
Spend $0, get $10 Register Reward back
Final price: Better than free after coupon and Register Rewards**
**Donate the meter to charity
Buy 1 Scalpicin at $5.99, Get $5.99 Register Rewards
Use $1/1 Spalpicin printable coupon (Internet Explorer version) or (Firefox version)
Spend $4.99, get $5.99 Register Reward back
Final price: Better than free after coupon and Register Rewards
Buy 1 Blink Tears at $7.99, Get $7.99 Register Rewards
Use $1.50/1 Blink printable coupon
Spend $6.49, get $7.99 Register Reward back
Final price: Better than free after coupon and Register Rewards
Buy 1 Zicam (10-count) Cold Sore Swabs at $10, Get $7 Register Rewards
Use $3/1 coupon found on the product or $1/1 coupon from the 10/25 Smartsource insert
Spend as little as $7.00, get $7 Register Reward back
Final price: Free after coupon and Register Rewards
Buy 2 Advil Pain Relief at $4.49 each or Thermacare Heat Wraps at $5.99-$7.99, Get $5 Register Rewards
***Deal idea #1***
Buy 2 Advil PM at $4.49 each
Use two $2/1 Advil PM printable coupons
Spend $4.98, get $5 Register Reward back
Final price: Free after coupons and Register Rewards
***Deal idea #2***
Buy 2 Thermacare heat wraps at $5.99 each
Use two $3/1 Thermacare printable coupons
Spend $5.98, get $5 Register Reward back
Final price: $0.49 each after coupons and Register Reward
Buy 2 select Cookies, Crackers and Treats at $2.50 each, Get $2 Register Rewards
Keebler Cookies 11.5oz-16oz; Cheez It Crackers 7.5-9oz; Rice Krispie Treats
Buy 2 and use two $1/1 Keebler’s Fudge Shoppe Cheesecake Middles printable coupon (Internet Explorer version) or (Firefox version) or
Use $1/2 Keebler Crackers and/or Sunshine Cheez-It Baked Snack Crackers from the 12/13 Red Plum insert
Spend $3.00, get $2 Register Reward back
Final price: As low as $0.50 each after coupons and Register Rewards
Month Long Register Reward Deals
Buy 1 Vitamin Schtick Lip Care at $1.99, Get $1.99 Register Rewards
Spend $1.99, get $1.99 back
Final price: Free after Register Rewards
This deals were found from a list that was put together by Carrie at Pocket Your Dollars.

Target Deals 1/31-2/6/2010

Here are my picks of deal that can be found at Target this week.
Prices may vary by region.
Freebies are in RED

Sobe Lifewater $1.00
Buy 2 and use buy one, get one free printable coupon Internet Explorer version or Firefox version
Plus, use two $0.50/1 Target printable coupons
Final price: Two free after coupons

Clorox Green Works Cleaning Products—prices start at $2.28
Use the $2/1 peel-off coupons found on specially marked packages
Final price: As low as $0.28 after coupon

SoftSoap Ensemble Refills $2.49
Use the $2/1 peel-off coupon found on specially marked refills
Final price: $0.49 after coupon

Cheese Nips are on a price-cut for $1.50 (until 2/13)
Use the $1/1 Nabisco coupon from the 1/24 Smartsource insert
Or buy two and use $2/2 printable coupon Internet Explorer version or Firefox version
Final price: $0.50 each after coupons
Wish-Bone Salad Spritzers—$1.62 (on price cut at many stores)
Use the $1/1 coupon from the 1/31 Red Plum insert
Final price: $0.62 after coupon

Campbell’s Chunky Chili $1.25
Final price: $0.75 each after coupon

Dannon Yogurt 4- or 6-packs $1.89
Use $1/1 coupon from 1/10 Smartsource insert
Final price: $0.89 after coupon

Buy 2 bags of Tostitos at $2.50 each, Get free dip
Buy 2 chips and dip, then use the $1/2 Tostitos Chips & Dip Target printable coupon
Plus, use the $1/2 manufacturer coupon from the January issue of All You magazine (it is sold at Wal-Mart or by subscription)
Final price: $1.00 each after coupons and free dip

Dove Men + Care Bonus Packs (includes 4-pk soap & small Body wash) $3.99
Use the $1.75/1 coupon from 1/31 Red Plum insert
Final price: $1.24 after coupons

Buy 3 select Graco baby items, Get $100 off at checkout
Buy Graco Element Pack n Play for $109.99,
Plus, buy Graco Cozy Dinette Highchair for $79.99,
Plus, buy Graco Alano Travel System for $159.99
Final price: $249.97 for all three after instant discount

Gift Card deals:

Buy 2 Huggies Diapers at $18.99 each, Get $5 Target gift card
Use two of the following coupons:
$1.50/1 or $1/1 from 1/17 Smartsource insert or
$1/1, $1.50/1 or $2/1 printable coupons or
$1.50/1 or $3/1 printable coupons (from Target’s site) or
$3/1 manufacturer-issued coupon from the Cub Foods weekly sales flyer (if you live in Minneapolis)
Plus, use two $3/1 Target-issued Snug and Dry coupon from 1/3 Smartsource #2 insert (if you buy Snug and Dry)
Spend as little as $25.98, get $5 Target gift card back
Final price: As low as $10.49 each after coupons and gift card

Huggies Pull Ups or Pampers Easy Ups at $19.99 each, Get $5 Target gift card back
Use two $2/1 Huggies Pull Ups from 1/17 Smartsource insert and/or $2/1 printable coupon
Plus, use two $2/1 Target coupon from 1/3 Smartsource #2 insert
Spend as little as $31.98, get $5 Target gift card back
Final price: $13.49 after coupons and gift card

New On Going deals

Tabasco Sauce—price check on small bottle?
Use $1/1 Tabasco coupon from 1/31 Smartsource insert (exp 3/14)
Final price: Close to free after coupon
Cottonelle Aloe & E 12 Pack $6.49
Use $1/1 printable coupon in Internet Explorer version or Firefox version
Plus, use the $1/1 Target printable coupon
Final price: $4.49 after coupons

Olay Regenerist Cleanser 5 oz $5.49
Use $3/1 coupon from 1/17 Proctor & Gamble insert (exp 2/28)
Final price: $2.49 after coupon

These deals were found from a list that was put together by Carrie at Pocket Your Dollars. You can view her complete list as well as older on going deals.