April 20, 2012

Amazon MP3 Freebie

Here's a good freebie: get $2 in Amazon MP3 store credits with code MOMROCKS.  Since I can never find where to enter this info, click HERE to get to the page.  You'll just need to click on the yellow enter your code button, and it will pop up a little window with all your gift card balances and give you a place to enter the code.

I also just got a promotional email with some awesome $5 whole album downloads, and I'm shopping.  $5 is a good price for a whole album, but $3 sounds so much better, right?

What's your pleasure?  Some that catch my eye in this list include , John Denver's greatest hits, Norah Jones, and Brad Paisley.

Want more MP3 credits? There are some apps in the app store that are only 99 cents, and they come with a $1 MP3 credit. Apparently my 5 year old bought the full version of the free preschool learning game. That will teach me to try to let her play on the kindle while I do dishes.


It's a fun and (young) user friendly game, so give it a shot. This deal goes through April 26 only.

April 19, 2012

Morel Mushrooms

This weekend may be your last weekend to get out and go mushroom hunting. If you've never gone out looking for morel mushrooms, you will probably have to find someone to help you know where to hunt. Most people in my area guard the secret locations of their hunting grounds better than they do their computer passwords.

We recently had a big bag of smaller mushrooms to cook, and I have taken the best ideas from every recipe I can find to figure out the tastiest way to cook morels.

First, you have to get them clean and get out the bugs. Gross, but true. I soak mine in a big bowl of water with sea salt for several hours, then carefully rinse and pat them dry.

After you've gotten them all clean, you can slice them in half lengthwise.  I have done them in quarters if they are really big mushrooms. 

I then make two bowls for breading.  First, break some eggs and whisk them up well.  In the second bowl, I like to use finely mashed crackers.  Because the mushrooms have been soaked in salt water and the crackers are pre-salted, I usually leave salt out of the seasoning.  I like to use just a tiny pinch of nutmeg and some freshly cracked black pepper mixed with the cracker crumbs.

I heat some butter and olive oil in a skillet together.  This cuts down on smoking, but also gives you the best of both flavors. 

Dump your breaded mushrooms into the pan and saute for about 10 minutes or until they are nicely browned.


April 13, 2012

Tax Day Freebies and Deals!

All the stores seem to do some sort of deal for tax day. I'll share them all as I find them here.

Food Freebies and Deals
  • Bruegger's is offering a baker's dozen bagels and two tubs of cream cheese for only $10.40. You can get the coupon HERE and use it today through the 17th.
  • Arby's will give you some free curly fries.  Just print out this coupon. Tuesday only.
  • Cinnabon will give you two free bites, Tuesday only from 6 pm-8 pm.  No coupon needed, but see it here.
  • Chili's will give you a free appetizer or dessert with this coupon, and it's the 16th-18th.
  • Seattle's Best coffee has a twofold reward.  They will give a free cup of coffee at one of their stores on the 17th, but you can also register for a free sample on the same page.
  • P.F. Chang's will take 15% off your bill on tax day.  No coupon necessary, but see details here.
  • Boston Market BOGO meal with this coupon.
  • Marble Slab, free scoop of frozen yogurt from 4-7 pm Tuesday only.
  • Panda Express, free Shanghai Angus Steak, must print coupon from their Facebook page.
Store Discounts
  • Banana Republic 30% off Tuesday only with coupon BRTAXBREAK.
  • Veggie Tales 25% off all toys through the 20th with coupon code SPRING12.  Get free shipping if you spend over $30.
  • New York and Company (or NY&Co for my searchers)--this is in store only, but great!  50% off half the store, PLUS get an additional discount with coupons.  1481 will get you $40 off $120, or 1242 will get you $20 off $60.
  • Fashion Bug 30% off capris, 40% off tops, extra 10% off your order with code SPRING10FB.
  • Gap, through tomorrow (4/14) only, 25% off sale items with coupon code GAPGO.
  • Kohls, get an extra 20% off with this printable pass or coupon code BLOOM20.
  • The Children's Place (TCP) 20% off with coupon code Y2H2012 through April 15.  You can also mention store code 222 in store.
  • Michaels 20% off printable coupon.

I will keep adding as I find them!

April 10, 2012

Great Weekend for Kids!

Looks like a great weekend to be a kid! The weather should be good to be outdoors enjoying the spring flowers, and there are a ton of fun free activities over there in the free fun calendar --------------->

For Saturday, I have located these three events:
  • 8:00-11:30 am Celebrate Families at the Boone Middle School.  See the link for more details.  This starts with a free pancake breakfast, and then there will be a lot of fun crafts and activities for the kids, all free!  Dan Wardell from IPTV will also make an appearance.
  • 9:30 am Spring Egg Hunt at Inis Grove Park in Ames.
  • 10:00 am Lowes Build and Grow Clinic at your local Lowe's store.
For Sunday, my pick is always Sample Sunday at Prairieland Herbs and Picket Fence Creamery.  It goes on from noon to 5 pm, and will have lots of fun activities, free samples, and many ways to spend your money.

All weekend, Reiman Gardens is debuting their new theme.  It's LEGO!  If you have a Lego lover in your house, this should be a great summer to get your family a membership to Reiman Gardens.  It's pretty inexpensive, and you will more than make up for it with multiple trips to the gardens with your kids.   The details:
From 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 14th the artist will be available to answer questions, take photos, and sign autographs with the public. Then from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. on Saturday there will be a book signing where you can purchase one of Sean’s books in the Gift Shop and have him sign it for you.

On Sunday, April 15th Sean Kenney will be available from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. to answer questions, take photos, and sign autographs.

On Saturday and Sunday, there will be a continuous build station at the end of the Exhibit Hallway where guests can have fun and experiment with making creations out of LEGO® bricks. Visitors can “play and let it stay.”

Do you know of any more great activities?  Please contact me in the comments or email if you have something to add to the calendar.

Did you know that Groupon now has kids club deals?  There are some awesome ones today!  $39 for a reptile birthday party, $25 for 10 tickets to the Iowa Cubs--use them for any game you want, all at once or split them up over several games.  Check it out!

Awesome ebates Signup Offer

I have written about ebates plenty of times. They pay you cash back for shopping online. If you didn't sign up for the $5 bonus, maybe a $10 gift card will pique your interest. I got over $35 deposited direct to my paypal account from my Christmas shopping, which is awesome for just doing what I would have done anyway.

So, join today and choose a $10 gift card to Target or Barnes and Noble, among others. You can still choose the $5 cash signup bonus if you'd prefer.

$10 off $50 from Amazon Baby Store

This amounts to a nice 20% discount on whatever you're buying (from the list).

The details:

Through April 12, 2012, save $10 on every $50 spent on select items in the Baby Store, for savings up to $100 ($500 in purchases). Use the code BABY2012 to see your savings at checkout. Here's how (restrictions apply). Applies only to products sold by Amazon.com. Does not apply to products sold by third-party merchants and other sellers through the Amazon.com site.

This is only a two day sale, so get it before April 12.

PLUS--Amazon is having some other good spring sales right now. Check them all out here.

Shop Amazon Outlet - Spring Clearance Event

April 9, 2012

FREE Autographed Weather Channel Picture

I just had one of these sent to my weather geek husband. You can request one a month per email address! It would only take a year to get yourself a complete set of weather gods and goddesses for your wall.

Jim Cantore is my absolute favorite weather person. Who are you requesting?

April 8, 2012

FREE Kindle Books, Memoir Edition

These may not be free for long, but this is what I found today. If you love free Kindle books like I do, you may already know all the ways you can search. The freebie bestseller list is well and good, but sometimes it is nothing but romances. I like to start from the freebie bestseller list, then look through by category. Just this morning I found some interesting travel books there.

Then I headed to biographies and memoirs, because they're another favorite genre.

This is an eclectic group, but they all look fascinating to me:

So, remember. Just start with the bestsellers list, and then go down the left side bar to choose your favorite type of book.

Arts and Entertainment
Childrens Books
Life and Home

Happy reading!

April 7, 2012

Make Your Own Slime

Here is a fun project for (outdoor) mixing fun. I have posted before that Kid Concoctions are my favorite recipes. They made these recipes from basic household ingredients for their own kids, and they always work great.

Years ago, before I had kids, I got the Kid Concoctions book through my donation to PBS. I used it when teaching, and I still use it now with my own kids. At the time, donating to PBS was the only way to get the book, but I noticed this Festival season that the books are now sold through Alex Toys by Amazon. We still made our donation to PBS and got three kits for our donation.

Today we made the slime, which can also be purchased through Amazon for $10:

But for $10, you could buy enough ingredients to make a lot more than three batches of slime for your kids' enjoyment. All it takes is Borax, white glue, water, and food coloring. For small batch, use:
  • 3 T. water 
  • 1 T. glue
  • 2 T. Borax
  • few drops of food coloring
Mix together in a cup or ziploc baggy.**  My preference is to start with a cup, then put into a ziploc baggy.  We also mix stuff like this in our yard.

It starts out very wet:

Stir it for a little bit till it thickens a lot:

At that point, it will only thicken the way you want it if you work it with your hands.  You decide--let the kids get their hands in there and get gloppy, or transfer it to a plastic bag and have them work it inside the zipped up baggy.

If you prefer not to have a giant mess, leave it in the bag till it looks like this.  Yes, it changed colors.  We made two batches today.

At this point, it comes out of the bag nice and clean, and they can just play with it to their heart's content.  It won't get on anything, and it won't stick to hands, floor, or clothes.  Store it in the bag, then throw it away when it stops being fun.  Make more any time.

**What you never see on any of these slime recipes is just how gross and messy this can be.  They say to have the child mix with their hand.  They don't tell you that the child will wipe the slimy glop onto her shirt and pants, and that when it's liquidy it will also blop onto the kitchen floor and be ridiculous to clean up.

This kit for Bubble Paint (which may look familiar) might be worth the price just to get all the ingredients and also ideas for what to do with the projects.

To me, though, the best deal would be this Kid Concoctions book. It cost me a $150 donation 10 years ago, but we're still getting our use from it. You can get it for $7.49 with free Prime shipping from Amazon.  I promise, you will wear this book out.

It's nearing summer break, so I will be shifting focus to fun free or nearly free activities for kids.  If you are new to the blog, you can check out the activities under the SSSS (summer sanity savers series) tag for more ideas.

Kindle Fire Accessories

If you bought the Kindle Fire for $139 last week, you may now be looking for inexpensive accessories. I have discovered a nice case for $9.19, styluses 3 for $1.00, and two screen protectors for $7.99. For under $20, you can outfit your Kindle Fire in style.

If you missed the Kindle Fire for $139, they still have the refurbished Fires for $169. It's a good price, and I've discovered so many benefits that come with your purchase.
  • The refurbished Kindle Fire comes with the same one year warranty as the new Kindle Fire.
  • Both the new and refurb Fires come with one month free Amazon Prime.  The Amazon Prime gets you unlimited streaming video, free access to the Kindle owners lending library, and of course free two day shipping.
  • Free Cloud storage for all of your content from Amazon.
  • Apps for everything!  We recently took the Kindle Fire on vacation with us, and we were able to stream movies and TV shows from Amazon and Netflix.
  • Don't forget all the free books!  I have almost 300 books on my Kindle, and the only ones I bought were the 25 cent deals I posted a few weeks ago.  We have cookbooks, childrens' books, and every genre you could imagine. 

April 3, 2012

Casey's Pizza Coupons and Deals for April

Looks like there are a lot of great Casey's deals this month. They have their regular coupons, but also some good BOGO deals. They do take coupons, so you may be able to make some of these even better.

Here are the coupons for April (click link to print):

These specials are good through April 30, and no coupon needed.

  • Dove ice cream bars, BOGO free!  
  • Mars candy or Trident gum 2/$2
  • Mentos 2/$1.50
There are more deals at the above link.  Those are just my favorites.

April 2, 2012

April Amazon FREE Downloads

I'll start with the Kindle bestsellersThe 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.

You can get any kind of book for free!   There are a lot of good ones that I've not seen before, so I'll post the ones that seem interesting to me.  Be sure to check them out for yourself.

 Here also is the Kindle Daily Deal.  This changes (obviously) every day, so bookmark this page.

The top Kindle books for $3.99 and under.  While they aren't free, it's nice to have a good cheap list to work from once you've downloaded and read EVERY free book there is.  (Is that possible?)

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.   Find your favorites, or try out some new artists.  When it's free, anything goes.

 Don't forget the cheap MP3s for the month.  Since this is a free post, I'll just post the link to the April $5 whole album downloads.  They're all alt and indie albums.  Even better this month are the UNDER $5 albums.  There are great current albums like Maroon 5 for $3.99!

And just one more FREEBIE!  You need a FREE android app every day, right?  Bookmark this page, too.

April 1, 2012

April Amazon Grocery Deals

April already!

We'll start with the "clippable" click coupons.  They're always listed in my Amazon post on top, but I'll include them here as well.  I understand people in NY state may not get as many as those of us in other places.  The key here is that the coupons change when you refresh, so if you don't see one that is mentioned, refresh till you do.

The Managers' specials are HERE.

Now for the coupon codes and markdowns!  Remember there's already the 15% with Subscribe and Save, so the coupon code is just added to the per cent off.  You can see all the deals right here

(So far, they still have the March deals, but I will add the new ones when they come)

For now, take advantage of 50% off Easter candy, and:

  • Some great deals on Kellogg's cereals.  It became apparent that I need to review my opinion of a good price, since HyVee recently had these for half price--$2 a box!  Here is the link to all the ones on sale.  I don't see any stellar deals right now, but the prices will drop throughout the month.
  • The Movers and Shakers list, which will show you the deals being snapped up.  I check this every day to find the best Amazon grocery prices.
Watch throughout the month for the short term deals.