Sunday, August 15, 2010

10 Small Things I Do To Save Money

1. Groupon : You have to be careful because you can totally overdue it and spend money on things you wouldn't normal spend money on. But if you are looking for things to do or maybe even want to get your haircut and don't want to pay full price, Groupon is worth following. They email you the daily deals and you purchase in if you want the deal that day.

2. I have stopped buying as many frozen items besides vegetables, burritos, and a few other things. Our freezer is still packed though, but with meats.

3. I always buy beef and chicken in large quantities and freeze what I am not going to be using in the next few days. I do sometimes buy at Sams club but I have noticed that Wegmans is sometimes cheaper so if you have a Wegmans nearby it's worth checking into.

4. We eat lots of pasta because it is a heavy food and since we usually eat wheat pasta it can be relatively healthy. Wheat pasta can be a bit more expensive but if you catch a sale and stock up, its not any more than your basic pasta.

5. I have always planned out my meals but I now spend a bit more time planning it out and focus more on the ingredients. If I find an item I need and I know I won't use it all and I don't want to freeze it, I plan another meal that week that can use that same item. I hate wasting food and have struggled with it since being married.

6. I take a list with me and try to stick to it as much as possible. If I buy anything that's not on the list, it has to be something we eat often that I know will not go to waste.

7. I go to more than one grocery store. I love Harris Teeters because they often have really good deals, but if the food isn't on sale it can end up being a bit more expensive than buying it at another store. So I usually shop at multiple stores. This includes Walmart, Sams club (Love Costco too), Giant, and Wegmans.

8. I almost never buy cereal unless its less than 2$. If it's on sale I stock up so if I don't find a good deal on cereal for a few weeks running, there is no problem. The cereal has to be amazing or almost never on sale for me to spend more than 2$ on a box of cereal.

9. Coupons! I have a love hate relationship with coupons. Sometimes I am into them and sometimes I ignore them. The reason is that I don't like to buy tons of processed stuff anymore so I have a hard time finding coupons. But when I do and when I pair it up with a great coupon policy at a store, they can save me a bunch. Always double check when they are being rung up because sometimes the machines don't ring them up properly and the workers don't notice.

Also, if you don't get the Sunday newspaper with all the coupons, I recommend going to buy it at the local gas station. Sometimes I scan my mom's newspaper to see if there are any I want and then if there are I go buy the newspaper (or steal the coupons from her). Using just a few coupons will make it worth buying the newspaper.

10. For health reasons and to help our wallets we have stopped buying as much dessert or junk food. They really add up fast on your receipt.

Friday, August 13, 2010

New Recipes For The Week

Chicken Enchilada Pasta was a recipe that my husband and I were both skeptical about but it got such rave reviews that I had to try it. We ended up really liking it. Just as a side note, I did not put all of the called for 20 oz of green enchilada sauce in it and it was still very enjoyable.

And because the can of green enchilada sauce I got at Walmart (because it was the cheapest can and one of the few stores I found it at) was so large, I made Green Enchiladas the next night. I told Jon whenever he asks for one, he will always be getting the other recipe with it as I refuse to buy a 28 oz can of sauce and waste more than half of it (and with a small freezer, freezing leftover sauce is annoying). We both really enjoyed the enchiladas, which is saying a lot because I always prefer red enchiladas. Plus, they were super easy to put together and much healthier than the other enchiladas I make.

"My Country Tiss of thee. Sweet Land of Liberty"

A couple of weeks ago, my cousin came to visit. It was a real treat for me because I am usually out of town the rare times family visits. She had never been out here and wanted to see the sites so I spent a lot of time with her, my mom, and her grandfather, in D.C. We also went to Harpers Ferry and played cards for hours into the night. All activities were immensely enjoyable, especially cards. I love playing cards, as long as it's not uno :).

It is always nice seeing the monuments in D.C. as they tend to remind me how lucky and blessed we are to live in the United States and how much was sacrificed by those who came before us that we might be where we are at today.

I also love Harpers Ferry. No visit to the D.C. area is complete without a visit there. It is so beautiful and peaceful and has much historical value.

I feel so lucky to live in an area where I can drive whatever direction I want to and run into sites of historical significance. It helps me remember how amazing this country really is and why it is so important for me to be politicaly involved and active in my community. This country still has so much potential and I pray that we can right her course that we may fulfill that potential.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Being the Right Mate

My husband and I hit a new milestone in our marriage yesterday. I finally watched Lord of the Rings 3.

Success in marriage does not come merely through finding the right mate, but through being the right mate. ~Barnett R. Brickner