March 31, 2011

25 Packets of Organic Seeds for $4.99!

Act fast!  I saw this on Deal Seeking Mom's Facebook page, and hopefully all of you already know about her.  If you don't, you can click there on her name and learn more.

Here are the details:
The limit per household for individuals is 25 packets of seeds (approx. $75 value) for a $4.99 shipping and handling charge, and the limit per organization is 100 packets (approx. $300 value) for a $14.99 shipping and handling charge. You can only order seeds once and they will likely arrive within two to six weeks.

This is a great deal for anyone, especially those getting ready to garden.  Seeds of Change Foods is giving out millions of packets of organic seeds, and you'll get 25 packets for only $4.99 shipping.  When one packet of seeds can cost $3 or more, this is truly a great deal.  Check out their Sowing Millions page, and do it quickly to make sure you get a chance to get your seeds.

$25 Game Credit With Purchase of Nintendo 3DS

If you didn't pre-order, the 3DS is now available on Amazon. As I mentioned in my last post, prices on new consoles rarely go any lower anywhere at first.  The best deal might be here.  As stated in my previous post, you can trade in your old DS for up to $100 in Amazon credit.  Now they have added this: if you purchase a new 3DS, you'll get $25 credit to be used on any of the 3DS games listed.

In case you don't want to go looking for the trade-in deal on my last post, here is a copy and paste of those links.

You can trade in your old Nintendo DS platform for up to a $100 credit when you pre-order the new Nintendo 3DS.  It's a few different pieces of information, so bear with me as I try to explain and get all the proper links in place.  Just click the applicable link.

Cheapout on Gardening -- Three Sisters

This was by far my biggest success last summer. It's called the Three Sisters, and it comes from the Native American culture.  The idea is that the three crops are symbiotic, and all three do better as a result of being with the others.  I planted corn, beans, and squash all together in one half of my large raised bed.
  • The corn uses a lot of nitrogen, but it provides something for the beans to climb, and provides shade for the squash.
  • The beans fix nitrogen into the soil.
  • The squash provides ground cover for the other two, preventing weeds from growing and also helping to keep the soil's moisture.
You need to plant the corn first to give it a little bit of a head start.  Once the corn is about 6 inches tall, you can plant the beans and squash.  I used pole beans and a variety of squash seeds (because I had a few seeds in each packet, and my then 3 year old dumped them all together.)

After about two weeks, they looked like this.

As I mentioned earlier, this is just one end of my larger raised bed.  You can see rows of tomatoes or eggplant just to the right.

A few more weeks, and here it the large bed, three sisters in the back of the photo.

We had a very chilly and wet spring and summer, so the tomatoes and peppers were off to a slow start.  The sisters are doing great.  Here's a closer look at the three sisters, below.

The corn was definitely knee high by the 4th of July.

Here you can see the beans hanging from the corn stalks.

And a spaghetti squash growing.

The tomatoes finally caught up, and we got more beans than we could have imagined.

And there we have it!  The three sisters were mostly successful for us.  We had a severe wind storm that blew over my corn stalks right as the ears had started.  I staked it back up, but it ruined the corn.  We did continue to get a lot of beans and a few random squash.  We had trouble getting anything to come of all the squash blossoms, so this year I will add a plant to entice more bees to our garden.

March 30, 2011

Cheapout on Gardening -- Potato in a Bucket

As we prepare for our garden this year, I wanted to post a few ideas that we tried last year. None are original, but it's a good collection of all the cheap ideas that we have tried.  First, you can check out the posts I have already done by clicking the word "gardening" in my tag cloud on the right.  I'll also post the link here, for the people who like to have it easy. 

Today, I'm going to address the potato in a bucket.  It's easy, fun, and a really great container grower.

  1. First, find a good potato with a few eyes.  It doesn't have to be from the seed store, but it might have better results.
  2. Next, find a 5 gallon bucket (I've also seen people use 20 gal garbage cans).  Prepare it by drilling a few small drain holes in the bottom, then you can use some rocks to aid drainage.
  3. Place the potato in a few inches of soil.
  4. As the plant begins to grow, add more soil to cover the plant every time it gets about 6 inches tall.  The plant will add potatoes at each level.
  5. Once the bucket is completely filled with soil, allow the plant to continue to grow until it turns brown.  You can then harvest your potato and save the soil for your next batch.

Note: We are very much amateur gardeners at my house.  I want to do more, but we have gradually added to our gardening attempts over the past several years.  I do use this as a teachable moment for the kids (and me!) and the food we get is an added bonus.  I've found my kids are much more receptive to eating the food we grow ourselves.

Deals from my Inbox, 3/30

It's been a while since I've done a round-up of good online shopping deals, so here are the best of what I see today. I will run out of time soon, so will most likely return to post more deals here later. Check back!
  • Ann Taylor LOFT has an additional 40% off starting today on all items, even those already on sale.  They also have free shipping when you spend over $100 and $8 flat rate shipping for all other orders.  I will just link to the sale page, because they don't have a coupon code.  I see some nice blouses for $14.99.  40% more would bring them to $8.99.
  • This one ends today!  It's Bath and Body Works $6 for a two pack of Wallflowers, which I think is a pretty terrific deal.  They also have some cute plug-ins that will be 6 for $24.  Again, this one ends today, and is online only.  Code SPRING20 will get you 20% off any order through April 17 or S11392 will get you 20% off and a free signature collection travel size item.
  • NY&Co will give you $75 off $150 with coupon code 3792 or $35 off $75 with code 3950.  In addition, they have a sale right now with buy one, get one 50% off EVERYTHING.  This could add up to some pretty tremendous savings.  This ends TODAY, also.
  • JC Penney coupon for 15% off today and tomorrow only.  This can be printed for use in store, or use code LUCKY online.

Bag #13-15

If you're coming into this in the middle of my project, here is the link to what I am talking about.

Adding in a few more bags--This time I cleaned out the paper clutter in the office.  Most was sitting in stacks on the desk, but it really needed to go.  I sat down with it and sorted and shredded, and ended up with 2 bags of paper waste for the garbage and a bag of shredded papers for the compost pile.

I added a running total to the first post, because there were days I ended up with several bags and wasn't counting them.  I wanted to have an official total because the total in my blog titles doesn't match with the actual amount of items I've removed.

Last Days for Many Amazon March Groceries

For the full roundup of Amazon grocery coupon codes that are set to expire either today or tomorrow (depending on the coupon), see my March grocery post.  Some of the best deals are still available, and I am going to round up the absolute best for the month.  Most expire on March 31, but there are some with the March 30 date.  I will note the earlier deadlines.

The teas are going to be a total of 30% off. 144 decaf bags for around $6? 312 bags for around $6? 400 for $8?

Next up, coffee. Most of the coffees included in this deal have sold out, but there are still some good options left. Starting at $15-18 for four 12 oz bags, take a total of 40% off and you're getting them for under $3 per bag.

Cereals, still a few really great deals available. Some of these will be close to $1 per box.

Those are some of the best deals left for the month, but you can check out the March post for all of the coupons and coupon codes to go along with certain groceries. Stay tuned for the April deals.

March 28, 2011

Tangled Coupon, Right in Time

Because I know people are waiting, here is the link to the $5 coupon for the movie Tangled, releasing tomorrow!

Target also has a $5 coupon, so be on the lookout for that one!  I know it came in a mailed coupon booklet, if you were lucky enough to get that one.

You also can preorder for $14.99 today at Amazon if you just want the DVD, $19.99 for the combo pack, or $24.99 for the 4 disc combo pack.

FREE This Week, 3/27-4/2

Here are the freebies as I see them in this week's ads.


The first is Dazzling Deals (good through 4/3), and here are the freebies. There are other good deals, but I'm doing freebies only in this post.
  • Home/Auto wet wipes, $1.50 with $1.50 rebate, limit 4.
  • MyKidz comfort patch 7 pack, $5 with $5 rebate, limit 6.
  • 2 pack yellow stripe paint roller, $5 with $5 rebate, limit 4 2 packs.
  • 3 inch or 2 inch paint brush, $4 with $4 rebate, limit 2 of any combination of the two brushes.
Now Dazzling Deals, part 2.  These really are great deals, so check out the ads.  This ad is good 3/27-4/3.
  • Deck Wash, $3 with a $3 rebate, limit 4 gallons.
  • 4 inch pad edger, $2 with a $2 rebate, limit 4.
  • Roll-a-Bag, $4 with a $4 rebate, limit 2.
  • Spic n Span wipes, gloves, or brush, 75 cents with a 75 cent rebate, limit 8 total of any combination of the three. (ex: 3 wipes, 2 gloves, 3 brush)
  • Doggie Duty 20 count bags (sending to my neighbor) $1.50 with a $1.50 rebate, limit 10.
  • Lifetime Ultra Caulk, $3.50 with a $3.50 rebate, limit 24 tubes!  That would certainly seal a lot of tubs.  WOW!

March 25, 2011

Bag #10-12

If you're coming into this in the middle of my project, here is the link to what I am talking about.

I am still working on this project, but some isn't as glamorous as others.  The pictures are all starting to look the same--hey, it's another bag full of stuff.  Along with my spring cleaning indoors, there are some needs outside that are getting attended to.

Bag #10 was a bag full of my neighbor's dog's poop.  I had all sorts of terrible thoughts about what to do with that bag, but since I want to keep up neighborly relations, I'll just post my fantasies here. 
  • Paper bag, on their doorstep, light it on fire, ring the bell, and run.
  • Simple deposit on the front stoop, just so they can have what's theirs.
  • My favorite one, and I did toy with it for a while, was to leave the pile of crap in the front yard with a sign that says, "Lost and Found" with bags attached to the sign so people could remove what was theirs.
  • This wouldn't be a bag, but it was quite tempting to simply fling the poo from my yard to the one next door.
  • How about you?  Do you have a favorite idea, or want to vote on one of mine?
Bag #11 was a bag filled with my old and ratty towels and washcloths.  I will take them down to the animal shelter in town.  If they were a little better quality, they would be useful at the homeless shelter or in the clothing closet.

Bag #12 was a bag filled with nice curtains and tablecloths that I no longer use.  Those will be going to the clothing closet in town.

If I bagged up all the laundry I have folded this week as I clear out the fall/winter clothes and bring out the spring/summer clothes, it would probably fill another four bags.  I have also filled one more bag for the clothing closet.

My goal for the upcoming weekend is to expand on the toys and books that we're moving on out.  I will also be starting seeds for our garden and doing more work on the raised beds.  I'll post some more gardening stuff as we work on it, and you can click on the gardening tab on the tag cloud to read some of my posts in this regard from last year. 

I'd love to hear more about what others are doing in the interest of spring cleaning. 

March 24, 2011

Amazon Grocery Deals 3/24

Here are a few more new deals this morning. Coffee prices are going sky-high, along with everything else, so these cofee deals might be your last chance to stock up. These have a few steps, but worth it.

First, you'll have to hit the coupon page and look for the Community Coffee coupon for $3 off.  If this coupon doesn't come up right away, refresh the page until it does.  The coupons keep changing.  Click the coupon, then you can click on one of the following coffee deals, depending on your preference for flavor.  There is 15% off for subscribe and save, so you could get a 3 pack of 12 oz coffee for as low as $8 (depending on the starting price.)  That's around $3 per bag, which is really great.

Here's one more opportunity for coffee deals.  Eight o'Clock coffee, 15% off with subscribe and save, another 25% off with coupon code SOLOCOF5.  These are 4 bags of coffee for the price, bringing them down to $10-12 for 4 bags, so under $3 a bag again.

Some items have sold out while I was off doing other things, but there are still a few great deals to be had.  These are 15% extra off with subscribe and save, no extra coupons out.

These International Delight flavored creamers would be great if you're buying for the office--$10 for 192 creamer cups, that's around 5 cents each. 

The Skippy peanut butter is down again for some varieties.  These sell out fast when they drop, but are constantly being replenished. Use code SKIPWISH for an extra 15% off above the 15% from subscribe and save. This comes down to $1.50 or less per jar, which is better than my stock up price.  The giant jars are actually cheaper per ounce, but I prefer the smaller ones for our household use.

March 23, 2011

FREE This Week, 3/20-3/26

I get later each week with my Sunday ad freebies, but I'm trying.


This week there are two ads.  The first is Dazzling Deals (good through 4/3), and here are the freebies.  There are other good deals, but I'm doing freebies only in this post.
  • Home/Auto wet wipes, $1.50 with $1.50 rebate, limit 4.
  • MyKidz comfort patch 7 pack, $5 with $5 rebate, limit 6.
  • 2 pack yellow stripe paint roller, $5 with $5 rebate, limit 4 2 packs.
  • 3 inch or 2 inch paint brush, $4 with $4 rebate, limit 2 of any combination of the two brushes.
The one labeled roofing/siding sale has no freebies!  Oh NO!

I will add to this later.

Amazon Cereal Deals

Amazon is looking like the place to go for groceries lately. I ventured into my local store yesterday, and I nearly cried at some of the prices. I know that there has been bad weather, causing produce shortages and the rising cost of fuel is affecting the price of EVERYTHING, but some items we buy often are $1 (or more!) more than they were a couple of months ago.

If you're in certain markets (basically Seattle for right now), Amazon has a grocery delivery service, called Amazon Fresh.  For the rest of us, we can still get some great grocery deals every month.  Right now, there are some great prices on several cereals.  My hope is that April's grocery deals will bring price drops and coupons for my General Mills cereals.

Check out all the March coupon codes in my March Amazon Grocery Deals post, and here are some of the best prices I see today.  Remember items go in and out of stock, so if they're gone, check back and see later.

These cereals are often 4 or 6 boxes for the price listed, but most also have 15% off with Subscribe and Save, then an additional % off with a coupon.  I will list coupons with everything to make it easy.

The Kellogg's cereals (remember to buy through Amazon for 15% off, and an additional 10% with code KELRTEC2)

Here is the link to all of the cereals included in this promotion, which is through the end of March. Those single servings end up 38 cents per package, if that's something you'd use.

Here are a few more good cereal prices, no coupons, but 15% off with Subscribe and Save.

March 22, 2011

Bag #9 -- Baby Toys and Books

If you're coming into this in the middle of my project, here is the link to what I am talking about.

I charged the children with this bag, because their toys are out of control.  I asked them to fill a bag with toys and books they don't want, and they came up with a small grocery bag filled with a few measly baby toys.  We will be working more on this next weekend.

Picture to come later when I am closer to my camera.  Destination for these toys will most likely be the Salvation Army.

Bag #8 -- Laundry Room/Storage

If you're coming into this in the middle of my project, here is the link to what I am talking about.

I apologize for taking a posting break, but I have been working a bit more lately outside of the home. I have been keeping up on my Lenten Challenge, and I have done many more bags than blog posts.  In my basement, I have a huge laundry room with a very under-utilized storage shelf system.  This spot started out being for my extra paper items and such, but after a while, a lot of things started getting piled there.

In the past few days, I have removed from this room:
  • 2 bags of items for the trash.
  • 1 bag of clothes that somehow ended up on the shelves, most outgrown and will be in the clothing closet after they are washed.
  • 1 grocery bag of household cleaners of dubious vintage.  I've been using vinegar for quite a few years, so I'd guess they may have been on the shelf for 5 years.  I will have to save them to put out on a certain day where the city picks up paint and household chemicals.
 No pictures, because I think bags of trash aren't too glamorous. 

March 18, 2011

Amazon Friday Sale, 3/18

This Friday sale looks good if you like teas! If you recall from the March Grocery Thread, Lipton has a great coupon code (LPTONTEA), then there is 15% off for using Subscribe and Save, and today only (it's the Friday sale) there are a lot of teas marked down to $10 that were originally $20 or more. Take off 30% and we're talking $7 for 6 boxes of tea. Hurry, because these will sell out fast.

There are more teas, but I just highlighted a few that were the lowest price.  Be sure to check out the Friday sale for yourself.

March 16, 2011

Stuffed (with veggies) Bell Peppers

This is one of our favorite quick and easy meals, and I've changed it up so much over time that it's almost not recognizable as the original recipe. This is a great way to get lots of veggies into your family without them knowing.

  • 6 bell peppers, any color
  • 1/4 onion, diced
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 1/2 C. (or more) finely shredded carrot, zucchini, or any other veggies on hand
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp. (ish) Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 C. cooked rice
  • 1 C. shredded cheddar cheese (or use some American slices if that's what you have)
  • 1 can tomato soup
So, to start.  I wash the peppers and cut off the bare minimum of top.  The filling will do 6, but we use 4 because the kids just like the filling anyway.  Chop up that top part, why waste it?  I love the 4 packs of peppers that are multi-colored.  Once I chop the tops up, I chop up about 1/4 of a large yellow onion and mix it all up.  I freeze this and use it to mix into different things later.

Saute about 1/3 c. of this onion/pepper mixture in some olive oil.  Add the ground turkey, salt and pepper, and whatever other shredded veggies you're using, and brown the meat. 

Once the meat is browned, add the tomatoes and worcestershire sauce and simmer till liquid is reduced.
While I am doing all of this, I start cooking the rice.  A lot of recipes have you cook the rice in the meat mixture, but it speeds up the process this way.  In this picture, you'll notice I am using a cheater "boil in the bag" rice that I found on clearance.  I also blanch the peppers in the last five minutes the water is boiling, again, speeding up the final cooking process.
Once they are done, add the rice to the meat mixture, drain the peppers, and sprinkle some salt in them.

Once the rice is mixed in, add the shredded cheese.  If you're planning to use slices, you can put them on top before the sauce.  I've done it both ways, and people in my family prefer American.  When the cheese is melted, start filling the peppers with the mixture.  Again, the kids don't like the pepper part, so I put the extra around the base of the peppers.  It keeps them from falling over.

Then pour some tomato soup over the top.  If you're using slices, toss them on top, too.  I mix just a bit of water with the soup (like a tablespoon or two) just to make it a little easier to pour, and I also put just a sprinkle of cinnamon in there.
Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.  Enjoy!

Bag #7 -- Outgrown Clothes

 If you're coming into this in the middle of my project, here is the link to what I am talking about.

This has been put off for too long in our house. I have taken clothes out of circulation as I folded in the laundry room, then just filled boxes intending to sort and get rid of everything at some later date. Today was the day.

I went through and filled:
  • 1 13 gallon garbage bag of women's clothing for the clothing closet.
  • 4 (yes, really!) 13 gallon garbage bags of children's clothing for the clothing closet.
  • 1 tote full of outgrown clothes from the older child to the younger child.
  • 1 tote full of clothes for the consignment store.
  • 1 box of clothes for hand-me-downs to a younger relative.
  • 1 bag of clothing that was stained or damaged to the garbage.
  • ==== that's 9 bags, technically.
I'm embarrassed to admit that I could do more.  My husband still needs to go through and remove a lot of his clothes from circulation, and I still think that the kids have too many clothes to have to wash every week.  It's a great start, though.

Family Dollar Coupons

If you haven't "liked" them on Facebook yet, you may want to do it, because Family Dollar is always putting good coupons on their Facebook page. The latest was too good not to share with people. It looks like there are several coupon books, and you can print the coupons from all of them.  Their current ad page is on the same link, to help with planning your shopping trip.  Remember that you should be able to match up these coupons with the manufacturer's coupon in many cases.

March 15, 2011

Bag #6 -- Yard

 If you're coming into this in the middle of my project, here is the link to what I am talking about.

It's been a long cold winter, and today the temperature got to 50 degrees. Cold for many, but we think it's warm. We threw out the plan for this afternoon, and instead we collected a bag filled with sticks and branches from our trees.

Destination? Our backyard firepit. I think we may even be making s'mores today. I'm posting quickly as I head out to the store, but here is what it will look like by the time I get back from the store.

Once we get the marshmallows roasted, it will look like this.  I can't wait.

Only it's not quite so green yet.  I'm also cleaning up the garden plot and prepping for my next layer of lasagna.  Spring is in the air.

Amazon Nikon Camera and Lens Deal

There were some great Canon camera and lens deals throughout the last year, but I've had many people ask about Nikon deals. I promised that I would share if I found one, so here it is.  The only problem is that the camera bodies keep selling out, so you will have to check back for them to be in stock.  Alternately, you could order now and get an alert when they are back in stock.  I'd just be worried about missing out on the coupon deal for the lens.

This offer is valid through March 26, 2011, so you do have a few more weeks to catch it in stock.  See all the details here, and here is my quick and simple explanation:  Buy a Nikon camera, get a huge discount on a lens.  The best part is that it isn't a mail-in rebate, so you just get up to $400 off a lens to go with your new camera.  The cameras included are at various price points.

The best camera for price and value on the list is the D3100, but of course it is currently sold out.  The Amazon price will be under $600. The D90 has a really good price drop, making it under $1000. The best lens (price and general use) is the 55-200 mm lens, was $250, down to $199, with $100 off.

Good luck!  I love to watch for deals, so feel free to request another deal and I'll keep an eye out.

FREE This Week 3/13-3/20

I'm sorry for not getting this one on Monday, but I was out all day.  I think this is the most complete list I can find from my ads.


Starting with the ad labeled 3/6-3/20.  There are more great deals to be found, but I'm sticking with my freebies.  Find all ads here.
  • 2 inch Handi-Clamps, $4 with a $4 rebate, limit 4 per household.
  • Landscape block adhesive, $3 with a $3 rebate, limit 12 per household.
  • 3 piece paint roller kit Includes 9" x 3/8" roller cover, 9" roller frame and rust-resistant 11" paint tray, $7 with a $7 rebate, limit 2.
  • Smart caulk tool, $5 with a $5 rebate, limit 2.
  • 4 inch pad edger or two pack replacement pads, $2 with a $2 rebate, limit 4.
  • 2 pack painbrushes, $4 with a $4 rebate, limit 2.
  • Flat paint gallon (in white, antique white, or ceiling white, $11 with an $11 rebate, limit 5.
  • 3 pack lint roller $5.09 with a $5 rebate (so 9 cents per pack) limit 4.
Moving on to ad labeled 3/2-3/20
  • Insta-peel veggie peeler, $4 with $4 rebate, limit 6.
A new ad labeled Made in the USA.  3/13-3/20.  Some from that ad are repeated from the previous ads that are still in effect, so I apologize if I double some.
  • Only this one is new.  Physique shampoo, conditioner or 2-in-1, $6 with $6 rebate, limit 4.
  • Remember, I'm only posting free items, but there are always good deals to be had on other items.
  • 3 oz. ArthArrest, $9.99 with $9.99 in register rewards.
  • Irish Spring (many products), 2 for $6, with $4 RR when you buy 2.  There are many good $1 off 1 item coupons, so these could be free.
  • Clearasil face wash, $2.99 with $2 in RR.  Print coupons here, making these free or better.
  • BOGO Right Guard and Dry Idea.  There are BOGO coupons from the last Brand Saver, making these free.
  • Not free, but I'm always on the lookout for cereal deals.  They have General Mills cereal and bars on sale for $1.99 per box.  I have many coupons for $1 off two, bringing it down to $1.50 per box.  Not bad.
Best of the Rest
  • Pep Boys, free spark plugs!  Get up to 16 free--$1.50 each with $1.50 rebate.
  • O-Reilly's, free Armor All wax, polish or wheel protectant, $7.99 with $7.99 rebate.  I don't see the limit in the ad, so it might be 1 or 50.  Best to ask in your store.  

Does anyone know of any other good freebies this week?  I'd love to add them to my list.

Earth's Best Baby Food Deals!

I just noticed these great prices on Earth's Best organic baby food.  Act fast before they sell out.

Remember that the price is 15% less with subscribe and save.  There is also a code that you can use, EBMARCH4, for 5% more savings.  That comes down to about 50 cents a jar for most of these.

Don't forget my March Amazon Grocery post for the full list of coupon codes.  I update that post when I find new coupons.

March 13, 2011

Bag #5 -- Puzzles

If you're coming into this in the middle of my project, here is the link to what I am talking about.

I have been doing bags when I can.  I really want to make sure that I complete the 40 bags project.  Part of the reason I am blogging about it is to make sure that I am held accountable to finish.  Because I do work part time with strange hours, I sometimes do two or three bags in one day, so I am saving some for the days I don't have time to do it.

This was part of that hall closet clean out. There were a lot of puzzles we had never opened, just because we didn't have time and had children who made it pretty well impossible to do puzzles without pegs in them.  I filled a bag with puzzles to find a new home.

Destination?  I'm trying to decide.  Here are some options:
  • Goodwill and the Salvation Army will accept unopened games and puzzles.
  • Take them to a resale shop.
  • In our area, Blank Children's Hospital will accept new toys and games.
  • Any hospital or cancer treatment center would also accept new toys and games.
  • Sell them on eBay.
  • Take them to a local nursing home.
Does anyone else have more ideas?  I think these will go to the nursing home or the new senior center in our town.

Bag #4 -- Movies

If you're coming into this in the middle of my project, here is the link to what I am talking about.

For this one, I went through our movies and got rid of a bunch that we don't need. Part of me wants to get rid of all movies. We have Netflix with instant watch, and it just seems like so much clutter to have them all around.

I listed all of them on eBay in 99 cent auctions.  Currently there is NO insertion fee for auctions under 99 cents on eBay, and you will not get charged any fee if the item does not sell.  I will not lose anything if they do not sell, so whatever doesn't sell on eBay will go to Amazon...

Here is the link to Amazon's DVD Trade-In page. It's very easy to use. Just put in the title of the movies you have to trade in, then they give you a FREE shipping label to print, and you will get paid with an Amazon gift card, good for anything you want to buy, including some of those great grocery deals I've been posting this month.

I will post an earnings update on this post later, but I listed 29 movies in about 1 hour this morning.  They all end Wednesday, and I will be able to ship them all out together at one time.  EBay makes the listings really easy for movies and books, and I'm really excited about being able to list them risk free.  

*Yes, that's my cat in the picture.  I tried to crop him out, but it didn't work.

Amazon Grocery Deals 3/13

I hope everyone remembered to Spring Forward last night/this morning. We're getting ready for our Sunday schedule, but I happened to see a few more good Amazon grocery deals. Remember to check out my March Amazon grocery post to see all the grocery coupon codes available this month. All of these items will be 15% off with subscribe and save, and an additional per cent off with a coupon code.

Some cereals.  The Kellogg's cereals will be 10% more off with code KELRTEC2.  That's 4 boxes for this price, which is great.  I will try to post my favorite Raisin Bran muffin recipe later.

Some other good random prices:

I'll be back with that recipe and some more bags for my 40 day challenge.

March 11, 2011

Bag #3 -- Hall/Coat Closet

If you're coming into this in the middle of my project, here is the link to what I am talking about.

I know it seems like copping out, doing all of these small areas within the house, but I've found I need to start by cleaning out storage areas so that I have room to put things when I am doing the rest of the house for spring cleaning.

This morning, I am tackling the coat closet, which doubles as an area to store just about everything. We keep board games, cleaning products, our carpet steamer, vacuums, and just about everything else you can imagine in here. I'm not finished with the clean-out yet, but I wanted to share the first bag that has been removed.

 Behold the rare "before" picture.  It's not as organized as it looks.  The games tend to fall out when it gets opened, and you can't get to any of the coats because all the mops and cleaners are in front.  We also rarely have room to hang other people's coats in here because there are so many in it.

My first step was to remove an entire 13 gal. garbage bag filled with winter coats, light jackets, children's snowsuits, all of which are perfectly suitable but haven't been worn in 2 or more years.

Destination: Harmony Clothing Closet in Nevada.  They accept used clothing and distribute it for free within our community on Saturdays and Monday evenings. 

Some other options:

Bag #2 -- Linen Closet

If you're coming into this in the middle of my project, here is the link to what I am talking about.
I did this one yesterday, but didn't have time to post about it. This is an extension of the bathroom cleaning. I went through the linen closet where we keep towels and ALL of our stockpiled soaps and toiletry items, and filled an entire bag with extra items that we don't need.

Destination: St. Patrick's Church food pantry is on Saturday morning, so I thought that these would be great extras there.

Some other options would be:
  • Local women's shelter.
  • Your local food pantry.
  • Your local church for distribution within the community.
  • Take to your mom's group for a swap.

Amazon Friday Sale + Grocery Deals 3/11 ONLY

This is the Friday sale, so these deals are only for today. Many of them are extra great because they combine the March grocery deals that I posted about last week with the super low Friday sale prices.  Get them while they last, because many sell out fast.

Here are the best items that I see right now, but you can also check out the Friday sale for yourself.

Use code LPTONTEA and Subscribe and Save to bring these prices down from over $22, to $13 on sale, to $9 for six boxes of tea.

Prefer decaf tea? This one looks like an even better deal. 144 tea bags for just over $8. The cold brew bags come down to $21 for TWELVE boxes of the family sized bags.

These organic snack deals aren't on the Friday sale, though I don't know how long they'll remain marked down.  The fruit leather is 15% less with S&S, and there are 30 in the package. They are gluten free and dairy free, with no added sugar.

The PB&Js are organic, with 25 for the price. Save an additional 30% with code PLUMOR33, making them nearly 50% off with S&S, about $9 for 25 sandwiches.

March 10, 2011

Bag #1 -- Bathroom

Oh my, this bag was hard fought. I think the bathroom is one of the most neglected rooms in my house. I generally save the cleaning of the bathroom for last, push things around to clean around them, or throw them in drawers.  Other people in my household *coughcoughhusbandcough* throw empty containers back under the sink or put them away in the medicine cabinet with a few drops left in.

I actually did 3 bags** when I cleaned the bathroom.  I started a bag with expired meds, another bag (left side of picture) with unopened extra sample sizes of toiletry items for donation, and a third bag for garbage.  The donation bag isn't full but I will add to it as I purge from other storage areas.

**Pretty sure Target should pay me for the next 40 days, because every bag you will see will have their logo. 

Lenten Challenge AKA the Big Dump

I was shown the 40 Bags in 40 Days challenge by a friend, and decided it would go well with my decision to quit computer gaming for 40 days.  Since I'll have all that extra time on my hands, I will start this challenge in conjunction with it.  You don't have to be religious to participate in the challenge.

If you too are starting spring cleaning (it's that time of the year, isn't it?) I'd love to work together to get the job done.  I am one to make lists but then forget to look at them or lose them.  Because of that, I'm just going to list a few areas that need attention here.  Add your own, and we can all work together.  Leave comments telling what you have done.
  • In the bathroom: medicine cabinets, under the sink, countertops and shower area.  What do you do with your expired medications?  Our town has a day where they collect them all for disposal.  I know flushing is not correct, nor is it a good idea to just throw them in the trash.  You should be able to contact your local hospital or pharmacy to find something in your area.
  • In the kitchen: dishes, tupperware cupboard (I get rid of anything that doesn't have lids), pots and pans, under the sink, pantry, spice racks.  There are so many areas in our kitchen where extra items collect.  I have the added bonus of a tiny kitchen, so this area needs to be cleared out often.   
I did a blog post in October that listed some places to donate your extra items, so you can check that out HERE if you don't want to just throw it all out.  

Locally, our Food at First in Ames is looking for plastic containers, tupperware, etc., with lids so that they can send leftovers home with some of the diners.  If you have any to donate, please contact them.

I thought it would be fun to keep a running tally of the actual number of bags removed so that I wouldn't feel that I haven't done much.

  1. One bag of sample-sized, some full bottles of shampoos and lotions, and bars of soap to the food pantry.
  2. One bag filled with outgrown winter coats and jackets, to the clothing closet.
  3. One bag filled with my clothes, to the clothing closet.
  4. One bag filled with puzzles, to the nursing home.
  5. Four bags of childrens clothes, to the clothing closet.
  6. Two bags of childrens clothes, for hand-me-downs.
  7. One bag of towels, to the animal shelter.
  8. One bag of linens, to the clothing closet.
  1. One bag from the bathroom of mostly used or expired soaps and cosmetics.
  2. Two bags of random junk from storage shelves.
  3. One bag of clothes too worn for donating.
  4. Two bags of paper clutter/mail, etc.
  1. 29 DVDs, on eBay and through Amazon's trade-in program, after fees and shipping supplies, $22.
  2. 1 bag of childrens clothing to the consigment store, will update later.
Special Circumstances:
  1. One bag of expired meds, sent to hospital for disposal.
  2. One bag of old cleaning supplies, saved in garage for household waste disposal day.
  3. One bag of sticks and leaves, to the fire pit for s'mores (gotta have some fun).
  4. One bag of dog poop, still pending.
  5. One bag of shredded mail to the compost pile. 
  6. One bag of plastic grocery sacks, recycled.
  7. One bag of reusable grocery bags, in the trunk.

Totals so far:
Total bags: 27
Total income: $22

March 8, 2011

FREE This Week 3/6-3/12

I'm a little late getting this done, but here are the best free items I see in the ads for the second week in March 2011.


Starting with the ad labeled 3/6-3/20.  There are more great deals to be found, but I'm sticking with my freebies.  Find all ads here.
  • 2 inch Handi-Clamps, $4 with a $4 rebate, limit 4 per household.
  • Landscape block adhesive, $3 with a $3 rebate, limit 12 per household.
  • 3 piece paint roller kit Includes 9" x 3/8" roller cover, 9" roller frame and rust-resistant 11" paint tray, $7 with a $7 rebate, limit 2.
  • Smart caulk tool, $5 with a $5 rebate, limit 2.
  • 4 inch pad edger or two pack replacement pads, $2 with a $2 rebate, limit 4.
  • 2 pack painbrushes, $4 with a $4 rebate, limit 2.
  • Flat paint gallon (in white, antique white, or ceiling white, $11 with an $11 rebate, limit 5.
  • 3 pack lint roller $5.09 with a $5 rebate (so 9 cents per pack) limit 4.
Moving on to ad labeled 3/2-3/20
  • Insta-peel veggie peeler, $4 with $4 rebate, limit 6.
Next ad 2/27-3/13
  • Subfloor adhesive, $4 with $4 rebate, limit 12.
  • 25 pack sandpaper 9" x 11" Includes 5 coarse (50 grit), 10 medium (80 grit) and 10 fine (120 grit) sheets, $4 with $4 rebate, limit 2 packs.
  • Safety glasses, $2 with a $2 rebate, limit 4.
I'll send this one as is, but come back and add in the Walgreens and Target freebies later. 

      March 4, 2011

      Amazon March Black Friday SALE

      This is today only, and they have even lower magazine prices than a couple of days ago. Just be sure to check it out, because it's only for today.  All the links and details:
      • The link to all the magazines is here.  Every one of these is $5, and it's a lot of magazines not normally involved in their sales.

      Be sure to check it out for yourself, because there are MANY more than the ones I've selected here.

      March 2, 2011

      Amazon March Grocery Deals

      Wow, are there a lot of deals this month for Amazon. Expect some of the prices of these products to drop lower as the month goes on. Even if they sell out, most items are restocked throughout the month. I don't see any crazy wild deals yet, but they will happen. Here, then, the coupons page and the extra coupon codes to go on top of the 15% discount for Subscribe and Save.

      There are more deals than the ones I'm posting, but these look the best to me.  Remember you get 15% off most of these IN ADDITION to the discount from the coupon codes.
      • Lipton Teas, an additional 15% off with code LPTONTEA
      • Eight O'Clock coffees, an additional 25% off with code SOLOCOF5 --this gets 4 bags of coffee down around $10, which is about $2.50 each.
      • It's a great month if you buy Kellogg's!  10% additional off their cereals with code KELRTEC2
      • Code POPTART2 will get you an additional 10% off poptarts.
      • Get an additional 10% off with Kellogg's Nutrigrain Bars with code KLGWS3II.
      • Get an additional 10% off Organic Valley milks with code VALLEYM4, bringing these all down to about $1 per serving.
      • Get an additional 10% off Crispy Green snacks with code GOCRISPY.
      • Code BROTHERS will get you an additional 10% off Brothers All Natural Crisps.
      • Udi's Granola, all natural and many are gluten-free, have the 15% off with S&S and also an extra 15% off with code UDISO3II.  
      • Campbells Soup at Hand 8 packs are 15% off and 15% off with code CAMPBE78.
      • Bumblebee products, use code TUNABBB8 for an additional 10% off.
      • Use code SPICEIS5 for an extra 10% off of Spice Island products.
      Again, there are many more, but these were the ones that looked good to me.

      Here are a few that have already dropped to low prices and are moving fast.

      I have just found that Skippy Peanut butter has a new discount code for March. Use code SKIPWISH to get an additional 15% off these items.

      I'm also adding this code for Baby Mum Mums BABYCRA4, making them 40% off, and this code for Plum Organics, making them 45% off.

      Amazon March Magazine Deals

      The magazine deals came in like a lion this month. There are some really great magazines--already cheap, but then take an additional $5 off the list price. I'll share links galore to cover all the great deals.
      My favorite deals:

      There are many more than the few I picked out, so check out all the links.

      Amazon Download FREEBIES for March

      I was remiss yesterday in posting our great Amazon deals for March. I see much to share this morning, so I will get to it. Of course, I always start with FREE. Free books, free music, what is better than free?

       I'll start with the Kindle bestsellers.  The free bestsellers are in the list on the right, but if you also look on the left, you'll see many books for under $5.  Did you know you don't even have to have a Kindle in order to read these free books?  Amazon has reader apps for many different types of devices.  You can download that HERE--free.

      Here are a few of my favorites, but there's the top 100 list above, and many more freebies to be had.  There are many more of the "Circle of Friends" cookbooks than the few I posted.  It looks like a great time to download recipes for free.

      On to the free music...  You can start here on the bestsellers list.  The top 100 free downloads are in the list on the right.  Some are singles, and some are entire albums.  Here are some of my favorites:

      And not free, but here are the 100 $5 album downloads for March.  There are a lot of good albums on the list, so check that out as well.  Enjoy!  I'll be back with March magazine deals soon.  There are some good ones!