Friday, July 29, 2011

Pure Pinterest Genius 2

Since I just cannot get over how many awesome ideas I keep finding on Pinterest, I've decided to start a new series of posts called "Pure Pinterest Genius." Here is my second edition; take a look at this awesomeness:

Pant Hangers for Fabric Storage,

Beverage Drip Catcher, Stephanie Bredeweg's knock-off idea: use a recycled 2 liter bottle

Gift Wrapping Station, Home Made Simple

Spice Rack book shelves, On the Banks of Squaw Creek blog

Wine Rack Towel Holder, Terri Baker's Knock-off idea

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Countdown to Christmas

I was just flipping through my Google Reader & came across a post telling me that I better get my butt in gear because Christmas is less than 5 months away. 

GASP! I panicked for a minute... then realized that 5 months is still a long time and it's nowhere near crunch time yet. 

But, since saving money usually means investing more time, we probably should all start working on a financial holiday game plan- at least in the back of our minds. I want to share with you some tips for how we will be saving on Christmas gifting this year:

I mentioned Ebates to you back in May and June, so I guess it's time for your monthly reminder!

If you haven't already heard of Ebates, its a websites that gives you cash back for purchases made online. First, you need to open a new account. Earlier this week, Ebates was giving new customers a $10 gift card to a selection of stores (such as Target) for registering & making a qualifying purchase. I make no promises since they reserve the right to cancel promotions at any time but I suggest you run over to Ebates now just in case!

After registering, simply go to Ebates before any online shopping and link through to your store of choice before purchasing. Then, Ebates gives you a cash rebate up to 25% of the purchase price! Since opening my account in May, I have already earned $32.45!

By clicking the Ebates logo above or any of the Ebates links (like this one: Ebates) I will receive credit for referring a friend to the site & would very much appreciate it!

Reward Credit Cards

The hubs and I have two credit cards that we use for most expenses and for which we earn rewards points. Right now we have a combined total of $170 in points on our two cards, which can be redeemed for cash, used for online purchases (at stores such as or redeemed for gift cards at over 140 retailers. 

We have found this to be a great resource for gift buying in the past. We like to stockpile our points all year, which helps to lighten the blow that Christmas can have on our pockets. Fair warning, however, this option may not be the best for everyone! I like to put all expenses on our credit cards- from $5 for lunch to any utility bill that will accept a credit card payment. BUT, we also pay off both credit cards in full each & every month to avoid finance charges. If you don't think you can do this, chances are the additional finance charges will out weight whatever you would receive in points- making it a money loser!

I found this great resource online to help you find the reward earning credit card that is best for you. It's from and it offers a cool interactive tool that lets you set certain perimeters for your card, based on your credit score, how much on average you charge per month, and what types of purchases you most frequently make. Then, it does the calculations & makes recommendations for you, showing you how much in rewards you are likely to earn annually for each credit card. 


Inbox Pays takes a little time to start seeing the rewards, but it is a super easy way to make some extra spending money, especially if you are glued to your computer all day, every day like me!

Basically, Inbox Pays will send you a couple emails every day with special deals, promotions & advertisements. For starters, you will automatically receive $.05 - $.15 for each email you open. (And honestly, if you can tell in the first few seconds that it's not something you are interested in, you don't even have to read it.) Additionally, if the offer is something you want to take advantage of, you will receive additional money in your account for each offer. Offers will range from free credit reports/scores to online purchases to product surveys to refinancing opportunities. There is a different value assigned to each offer and you definitely get to pick & chose which you want to participate in. 

Once again, to be honest, I rarely participate in the offers & just take my $.30 or so cents everyday for reading the emails. It takes just a minute and I have thus far earned over $30. One downside to Inbox Pays is that you won't receive a check until your account hits $50, which could take the better part of a year.

I will also receive referral credit in my account if you sign-up by clicking on the banner above or one of the links. Right now Inbox Pays is offering a promotion giving you $5 in your account just for signing-up. That's a good jump start!

My Coke Rewards

If you drink Coke Zero, or any Coke product, obsessively like me, than you should definitely sign up for My Coke Rewards. MCR gives you points for entering codes found under the caps of 20 oz. bottles & 2 liters, as well as in 12 & 24 pack boxes. Once your points add up, you can redeem them for entries in sweepstakes, merchandise, coupons, gift cards, or donate your points to a cause of your choice.

I like to redeem my points for magazine subscriptions, because I found that they are often some of the best deals in the reward catalog. I also like to give & receive magazine subscriptions as gifts. For instance, I would LOVE to receive a subscription to Real Simple magazine for Christmas this year. (Hubs, are you reading?!?)

Those are a few of the ways I save money over the holidays. I would love to hear what other ways you save! Please leave a comment below or shoot me an email at!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Wife Points Wednesday: My Kind of Fishing

As you may know, I ran away this past weekend for a girls shopping trip. I wanted to do something special for the Hubs... we'll call it a bribe to behave while I was gone. Fortunately, I had the perfect idea pinned on my WPW Pinterest board:

Fun Fishing Cupcakes from Nothing but Country

How cute are those?!? Now that's the kind of fishing I wanna do!

Mine didn't turn out nearly as cute, but delicious none-the-less. I used Swedish Fish, which my husband likes, but were a bit too big for cupcakes. I think they would work well if you made one big cake & put the tiny fishing poles around the edges.

One of these days I will get a camera that takes a decent photograph- I promise!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The (Not So) Frugal Housewife

I should probably hang my head in shame as I post this photo of all the stuff I bought at the outlet mall this weekend:

It's probably hard to see what all I bought, so I'll give you a little breakdown:

5 Maidenform bras $35 (that's $7 each for $20-$30 bras!! )
6 panties (Buy 5 Get 1 Free, Aerie)
a pair of jeans
a pair of jean capris
a pair of jean bermuda shorts
a pair of black work khakis
travel mug
6 stacking reusable lunch containers (Buy 4 get 2 Free, now I can stop throwing away 3 Ziploc bags every day for my Husbands lunch)
Real Simple: 799 new uses for old things (book)
car trash bag & organizer
2 pop-up mesh food tents
4 mini spatulas 
a drying towel for dishes 
2 tools to remove corn from the cob (my mom and I freeze corn in the summer so we have fresh tasting corn all year round)

Total Savings: $621.54!!!!

I made a list before the trip of everything I have been saying for months now that we/I need and I actually found everything that was that list this weekend. This was my most successful outlet shopping trip ever!

I did actually stick within my shopping budget. Except for the little brown Coach cross body bag I bought from a friend for $10! It's the perfect bag for long shopping trips and come on, I'll pay $10 for used Coach all day long!

Wait, what? No... no, that isn't a brand new silver Coach bag sticking out of the corner of the photo! That would have put me WAAAAY over budget. How could I possibly say I was working towards a frugal lifestyle after buying that bag!

<hanging head in shame>

<hanging head in shame but gripping on tightly to my new perfect handbag>

I did, I splurged. I've tried to justify it by saying that it was 66% off, which it was. I also convinced myself that I really haven't bought many new handbags over the last 3-4 years and that I can totally get a good couple years out of this bag, which I haven't and can. But, at the end of the day, it was still a splurge and I had to pull money from savings. 

To my credit, I have been at a Coach outlet at least 10 times with friends who were buying up a storm and yet I managed to walk away empty handed. While I've found great deals on bags before, there was always something about each bag I didn't like. This time was a different story- this bag was perfect! If I were a handbag, I would be this bag. 

Sometimes we ladies just have to treat ourselves! 

Last but not least, before I show you some bag candy, I'll leave you with these parting words: Clearance price + 50% off + 30% off!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Modern Translation: The Awesome Wife's Guide (Rule #13)

(This is the 14th post of this series. Click here to read the entire series.) 

* Don’t greet him with complaints and problems.

I'm guessing my husband would disagree, but I think I'm pretty good already at following this rule. Correction- I'm better than 60% of wives, which is above average... and I can live with that. 

Since complaints & problems often lead to disagreements & arguments, I'm translating this rule to be about picking and choosing your battles. I'm sort of tired today and not feeling especially witty, so I figured I'd let another wiser & way awesomer <new word alert> blogger teach you a thing or two today about this topic. 

I'm going to safely say that this is the funniest thing I have ever read. Totally worth your time, I promise! (Psst: I probably wouldn't click the link if you are easily offended or disapprove of 4 letter words.)

The Bloggess: And that's why you should learn to pick your battles

Dear 1950's Housewife, 

There are two things I am pretty certain about. 1) You wouldn't have bought the towels and 2) I need a Home Goods store nearby... and a Laura in my life. 

Have a pleasant day, 
The 2010's Housewife

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Cassi's Cabinets, Week of July 24th

Just a friendly weekly reminder to do your part and help make a difference by supporting Cassi's Cabinets!

Cassi's Cabinets is a service project to stock the pantry shelves of the Family Kitchens at Janet Weis Childrens Hospital at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, PA. The Project was started in honor of Cassi Choplick, a rising senior at Lewisburg High School who is undergoing treatment for Hodgkin's Lymphoma. When children are hospitalized at GMC, their families have access to Family Kitchens, but these kitchens are stocked through donation only, and currently the pantry shelves are low. 

The type of food that is needed is single serve, easy access foods that can be eaten on the go (and/or put in the microwave), such as granola bars, popcorn, snack sized chips, sandwich crackers, soup (microwaveable- not in a can), mac & cheese (single serving, in a bowl), breakfast bars, fruit cups, etc. Cassi's Cabinets Service Project is taking place during the month of July in downtown Lewisburg, PA and surrounding areas.

To learn more visit the Cassi's Cabinets Facebook page or read my original post about the project. 

Here are this week's coupon match-ups & shopping suggestions for Cassi's Cabinets donations:

Cassi’s Cabinets- Items for Donation
Week of July 24th


Weis Quality Toaster Pastries 4/$5
Kellogg’s Special K Bars or Crisps 2/$5
Lance Home Pack Sandwich Crackers (8 count) 2/$5

Want to spend $10?
4 packages Weis Quality Toaster Pastries $5
2 packages Lane sandwich crackers $5
= $10 for 20 breakfasts & 16 lunches or snacks


Chex Mix, Quaker Chewy Granola Bars (3 pack), Emerald Nuts, Frito Munchies, Hunt’s Snack Packs $1 each
Kellogg’s Pop Tarts $1.79

Cheez-it Snacks Mix, Corn Nuts, Corn Nuts chips, Keebler Crackers, Nabisco Cookies or Crackers, 4-8 oz $1.25
Buy 4, Receive $1.00 Extra Bucks, Limit 1
Use $1.00/2 Nabisco Cookies or Crackers from Smart Source coupon insert 6/19
or $1.00/2 – Keebler Club Crackers – (
or $1.00/2 – Keebler Toasted Crackers – (


Archer Farms Fruit Strips, 10 ct or Granola Bites, 9 oz $2.49
Frito-Lay Multi-pack, 22 ct $6.59
Kraft Easy Mac, 4 pk $3.29

Quaker Chewy Granola Bars, 8 ct $2.33
Use $1.00/2 – Quaker Chewy Granola Bars, 8ct or Larger, Target Coupon – (
Final Price: $1.83 each when you buy 2

Want to spend $10?
Frito-Lay Multi-pack, 22 ct $6.59
Kraft Easy Mac $3.29
=  $9.88 for 22 snacks & 4 lunches or dinners  


Nissin Chow Mein Noodle Meals 10/$10 (or $1 each)
Giant Apple Sauce 6 pack 2/$3
Entenmann’s Little Bites 2/$5
Fiber One Granola Bars 2/$5
Betty Crocker Fruit by the Foot, Gushers, Fruit Roll-Ups 4/$6
Giant Fruit & Grain Bars 3/$5
Kool-Aid Jammers 10 pack $1.88
Snyders of Hanover 100 calorie Pretzel snacks $3.49

Buy 2-Nabisco Favorites Lunch Box Tray Packs, Get 1-Capri-Sun 10 pack FREE

Want to spend $10?
Snyders pretzel snack bags $3.49
2 Giant Apple Sauce 6 packs $3
=  just $9.49 for 22 snacks  


Hunt’s Snack Pack pudding 4 pack  $1 each
Capri Sun, Kool-aid Jammers, Del Monte Fruit to Go 4 pack  $2 each
Kellogg’s Pop Tarts $2.50 each
Lay’s Chips multipack (20-24 count) $6.99

Want to spend $10?
Lay’s Chips multipack $6.99
Kool-aid Jammers $2
Hunt’s Snack Pack pudding $1
= $9.99 for 24-28 snacks & 8 drink boxes

Friday, July 22, 2011

I'm Running Away

I'm running away to the outlet mall for a girls weekend. Pray to the shopping gods that I find lots of awesome deals to come back & post about on Monday! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

I am a Dinner ROCKSTAR!

I ROCKED dinner tonight! I cannot remember the last time I made something so dang delicious! AND, the cherry on top, I got home from work, had dinner cooked, a well fed husband and the kitchen cleaned up by 6pm, leaving the rest of the night for relaxing (and writing this post). Boo-yah baby!

I followed the recipe above for the most part, but here is exactly what I did:

1/2 cup mayo
1 good squirt Spicy Brown Mustard
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1 package Perdue Short Cuts Carved Chicken Breast
3 strips of bacon, cooked & chopped
1 cup cheese, mix of cheddar & mozarella
2 tubes refrigerated crescent rolls
1 small tomato
half a head of iceberg lettuce, shredded
ranch dressing (on the side)

Mix onion, mayo & mustard

Cube up the package of Perdue Short Cuts & add chicken, bacon & cheese to mayo mixture

Lay crescents out like the photo on a pizza pan.

Get messy & place the filling around the inside of the crescent circle.

Bake @ 375 for about 20 minutes or until the crust looks like.....



This recipe would be great for a party. It makes about 8 portions. 

Serve with diced tomatoes, lettuce & ranch dressing.

For side dishes, I made roasted zucchini & carrots (tossed with olive oil, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes) and watermelon. The watermelon was served separately, of course. I highly recommend this recipe! (And please pardon my awkward spacing. Blogger and I are have a lovers quarrel tonight.)