Budget 2011: What Is A Stockpile?

It occurred to me today that although I talk about having a stockpile on both this blog and in my coupon classes, I haven’t ever actually talked about what one is or how to build it.  So let’s take a second and have a chat.

What is a stockpile?  It’s the “pile” or location where you keep extra groceries and supplies for your house that you buy at a discounted price.

Why keep a stockpile?  It saves you money!  Have you ever had to run out at the last minute and pay too much money for normal household staples (toilet paper, Ziploc bags, laundry detergent)?  By stockpiling you never run out of the things you need.

When do I stockpile?  This is the fun part.  Whenever you find a good deal on something (usually using your price book) pick up an extra one or two.   Let’s say there is a good deal on toothpaste so instead of one, you grab two.  You put one wherever you brush your teeth and the other goes in your stockpile for when you need it.  That way when your current tube is empty, you have another ready to go without having to buy it at full price!

How do I stockpile?  Just grab things when they are on an extreme sale (or free).  When there are very good coupons in the paper I may grab an extra or call a friend who won’t use the coupon and ask if I can have it.  That way I can grab two of something.  One goes in my pantry and one goes in my stockpile!

Where do I keep my stockpile?  That’s an excellent question!  And keep an eye on A Frugal Chick for the answer coming soon!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Donate Boost Coupons to Help Cancer Patients

This is an unbelievably cool chance to use coupons to help some cancer patients! 

I just went online and did some research and there are several posting boards talking about the benefits of drinking Boost while going through chemotherapy.  Because of the extreme weight loss often experienced, doctors recommend drinking Boost to help combat the sides effects.

If you have any Boost coupons you are not going to use, there is an address you can send them to.  Every coupon received will be used to offset the cost of Boost at a local cancer house in Paris, AK.

So if you have Boost coupons and would like to donate them, you can send them to:

Boost Coupons
1125 S. 3rd #14
Paris, AR 72855

Also if you know anywhere local that could use these, please leave a comment.  I am sure there are places where we each live who could benefit as well!

You can click here to read the whole story from Passion for Savings!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Budget 2011: Easy Ways To Reduce Your Spending

Sometimes making small changes in your life can make big changes in your budget.  Here are a few simple steps to check out:

1.  Start Eating In– Limit how often you eat out.  When you choose to eat out, use places with coupons and eat dessert at home!

2.  Check Recurring Payments– Review your club memberships and see if you are really using them.  If you are not working out on a regular basis consider cancelling your gym membership.  Lower the amount of DVDs you receive from Netflix.  Cancel magazine subscriptions you never read.

3.  Call Your Service Providers and Ask for Deals– Cell phones carriers, insurance companies and cable providers are operating in one of the most competitive economies in recent history.  Figure out who in your house is the best negotiator and have them make some phone calls.  You may be able to lower your rates without even changing your service!

4.  Cut Up Your Store Credit Cards– Store credit cards are notorious for their high fees and even higher interest rates.  Odds are you got the cards in the first place to save money.  But a 10% discount on a card that charges 27% interest is COSTING you, not saving if you do not pay it off every month.  Cut up your store card and keep your lowest interest rate card if you must have one.  By cutting up that card you won’t increase the balance and you can get it paid off quicker!

Those are 4 ways simple ways to reduce your spending.  By checking out each of these options, you can give yourself a strong start to 2011!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Budget 2011 Websites: Shop At Home

If you have spent any time on AFrugalChick.com you know I have a slight obsession with ebates. 

But there is a very similiar site called Shop At Home that many people recommend.

Stop at Home, like ebates, gives you a percentage cash back for on-line purchases you make.  Once your rebate gets up to $20 they mail you a check!   Like ebates, they automatically put $5 in your rebate just for joining!

So beginning today whenever I find a good deal on-line I will check the percentage cash back on both Shop at Home and ebates to be sure to give you the maximum benefit.  Between the two, we should be able to get rebates on almost all on-line purchases! 

So click here to get started and get your $5 credit!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


I Finally Did It- I Bought My Television

If you have been following A Frugal Chick for a while you know that periodically in a post I mention that I have been saving for a new television.  I take FOREVER to make big decisions like this and research it until I know more than I need to.

Oh and my goal was to get the television just using gift cards I earned on-line. 

So for the last two years I have been saving Amazon gift cards from Swagbucks and other sites in hopes of getting a great deal on the perfect TV.

Today I finally worked up the nerve to buy it.  It’s a huge decision for me and I still sort of can’t believe I did it!  And I managed to have enough gift cards that I didn’t pay a penny for the television!  (If you are interested I bought this one – I thought $150 off regular price was pretty good.)

My new television should be here soon.  My old television will have a new home with a friend of mine who will love and appreciate it as much as I have.  It’s a great television- I have been using it for 11 years and with the exception of a few minor quirks it has been fantastic.

So please use this post as encouragement!  If you set your mind to it and are patient you can get a great deal with your frugal knowledge!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Give Freely 1/5/11

Welcome to Give Freely!

One in five Americans deals daily with the issue of not having enough to eat.  Many of those are children.  As couponers, we have the unique opportunity to buy items at extremely reduced prices (or even free) to feed our families. 

The goal is Give Freely is to present you each week with freebies or near freebies from your local grocery stores. Because these items are so inexpensive we are hoping that you will spend the extra few cents to pick up a spare item to donate to your community center, church, local food bank or shelter.

If you are a blogger who does deals for a supermarket not on this list and would be interested in participating, please send me an e-mail!

Please take this opportunity to help stop hunger in this country!  

Here are the great deals this week:

Farm Fresh (to see the complete list of deals, click here)

No Yolks $1.50
USe $0.50/1 No Yolks Product, exp. 6-30-11 (SS 10/10/10)
Final: $0.50 each

Maruchan Yakisoba $0.89
Use $0.50/1 Maruchan from the 01/02 SS insert
FREE

Betty Crocker Fruit Snacks $1.50
Use $0.50/2 Betty Crocker Fruit Snacks printable
Use $0.50/2 Betty Crocker Fruit Snacks, exp. 2-26 (GM 01/02/11)
Final: 2/$2

Food Lion (to see the complete list of deals, click here)

Peter Pan Peanut Butter $1.50
$1.00/2 Peter Pan Peanut Butter, exp. 2-28-11 (SS 01/02/11 #2)
Final Price After Coupons: $1 each

Hunt’s Snack Pack Pudding $1
$1.00/4 Snack Pack Pudding, exp. 2-28-11 (SS 01/02/11 #2)
B3G1 Snack Pack Pudding, exp. 3-31-11 (ALL YOU Jan ’11)
Final Price After Coupon: As low as $.75

Hunt’s or Rotel Tomatoes 10 – 14.5 oz $1
$1/3 Hunt’s Diced Tomatoes, exp. 3-27-11 (ALL YOU Jan ’11)
$1/2 Hunt’s Diced Tomatoes, exp. 3-27-11 (ALL YOU Jan ’11)
Final Price After Coupon: $.67

Giant (to see the complete list of deals, click here)

Kashi GoLean Bars – $1.00

Pasta/Rice A Roni $1.00
Get 1 FREE Pasta Roni when you buy 3 Rice-A-Roni 01/2 Red Plum (exp 4/30)
$.75 each after coupon

Harris Teeter (to see the complete list of deals, click here)

Rhodes Warm and Serve Rolls $2.25
-$1 coupon from Red Plum 12/12
Final=$0.25

Quaker Oats $2.65
-$1 coupon from Red Plum 1/2
Final=$0.65

Budweiser Wing/BBQ Sauce $1.64
-$1/2 coupon from Smart Source 12/5
Final=$0.64

Kroger (to see the complete list of deals, click here)

Quaker Instant Oatmeal (8-16 ct) – $1.99
$1/1 Select Quaker Oatmeals from Red Plum insert 1/2/11
$0.99 after coupon

Barilla Pasta (12-6 oz) – $1.00

Kroger Bread (20-24 oz) – $1.00

Martins (to see the complete list of deals, click here)

 Peter Pan Peanut Butter 2/$3
$1.00/2 from 1/2 SS
$1 each after coupon

Ronzoni Healthy Harvest or Smart Taste Pasta 4/$5
-$1.00/2 Smart Taste Printable
-$1.00/2 Healthy Harvest Printable
$0.75 each after coupon

Target (to see the complete list of deals, click here)

Campbell’s Select Harvest Soup, Cans or Microwaveable Bowls 4/$5
$1/2 Campbell’s Select Harvest Soup printable
$0.75 after coupon

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, Assorted 5.5 – 7.3 oz 10/$10

Safeway (to see the complete list of deals, click here)

Progresso Soup – $0.99 ea
$1/4 Progresso Soup  (GM 1/2/11)
$1/4 Progresso Soup, exp. 1-29-11 (GM 12/05/10)
$0.74 each after coupon

 Mission Tortilla Chips – $1.49 ea (Limit 4)

Walmart (to see a complete list of deals, click here)

Idahoan Potatoes, $0.98
$0.40/1 Idahoan Product printable
$0.40/1 Idahoan Product printable
$0.58 ea. after coupon!

Martha White Cornbread Mix, $0.62
$1/4 Martha White Baking Mixes printable
$0.55/2 Martha White Baking Mix, exp. 2-28-11 (RP 11/07/10)
As low as $0.35 ea. after coupon!

Hormel Chili, $1.25
$0.55/2 Hormel Chili Product, exp. 1-3-11 (SS 11/07/10)
$0.98 ea. wyb 2 after coupon!

Winn Dixie (to see the complete list of deals, click here)

Gallon Pure Infant water – $1.00

Pasta Roni or Rice-a-Roni – $1.00
Buy 3 Rice-a-Roni get a FREE Pasta Roni from 1/2 Smart Source Insert
Final Price After Coupon: 4/$3

Kraft Macaroni and Cheese- $1

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Budget 2011: Organize Your Computer For Maximum Savings

There are several small things you can do on your computer to help maximize your savings when you shop!  Here are a few simple ones:

1.  Create a new e-mail address– Coupons and special sales codes are often sent through e-mail and can clutter your inbox leaving messages from friends and family lost in the middle of the deals.  By creating a new e-mail address you can keep all your sales in one place.  Gmail, Yahoo and AOL will let you create a new e-mail address for free.

2.  Create a list of favorites– Using your web browser take a moment to add websites you frequent to your favorites list.  (Make sure to add www.afrugalchick.com)!  If you don’t want to add favorites consider using Google Reader to check them all at once.

3.  Download coupon printing softwareCoupons.com, Red Plum and Smart Source all have small software files that you have to download in order to print coupons.  I have the software (not the toolbars) downloaded on my home computer and have had no problems with them over the last few years. 

SIDE NOTE:  If you are going to print coupons on-line, please consider using the links on my blog.  They are located on the right hand side and on the tab labeled “The Masters.”  Every time I get a few cents for being the blogger who sends you to their site.  I use all the money to keep this blog running!

4- Utlilize Social Networking– Facebook is a powerful source for coupons and sale information.  If you don’t have (or want) a facebook page, consider creating a profile just for couponing.  “Like” your favorite bloggers and then check in periodically to roll in the savings!

By observing these simple steps, you can make your computer a money saving tool!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Budget 2011 Websites: Eversave

I did a nice little post on Eversave when they offered a $5 bonus to anyone who signed up before December 31st.  At that point I didn’t have alot of experience with Eversave.  Now that I have researched it I have a little bit better idea of how to maximize the site to save some cash!

Eversave is a daily deal site that is in 57 markets and offer local saves from local merchants. They also offer online deals. The deals they offer are often 50-90% off so it’s definitely worth it to check out their site and see what deals they have.  They are very similiar to Groupon (except their site is much cuter).  Also, like Groupon, they often have deals that are good nationwide so no matter where you live you can take advantage of them!

Another great thing about Eversave is that their vouchers do not have the purchase price listed on them!  So you can give them as gifts! 

Just like with Groupon if a good deal pops up on-line I will be sure to mention it on my blog!  So welcome to using Eversave!  Sign up here to get started!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Budget 2011: Shopping the Thrift/Second-Hand Stores

A good used clothing store is a gold mine.  I will tell you any money saving secret I have EXCEPT my favorite thrift stores.  Those are for me to know!

One of the big ways you can save in 2011 is to utilize thrift or second hand stores for clothing.  As a kid I loved going to the thrift stores because I could have ANYTHING in the store- none of it was too expensive!

Here are my tips for thrift store shopping:

Dress Properly:  Thrift stores usually don’t have dressing rooms.  Make sure you have on form-fitting clothes so you can slip stuff over them and make sure they fit!

Grab It When You See It: Most second hand stores don’t have multiple of the same item.  If you see something you like grab it and put it in the cart!  Once you have gone through all the racks, you can find a quiet corner and check all of your treasures.  Whatever you decide not to keep you can always put back!

Know the Store’s Sales:  Yes, thrift stores have sales too.  Call ahead and find out if they have sales!

Know the Neighborhood: Looking for suits for the office?  Make sure your store is near a high income area.  Generally people donate to the store closest to their home.

Consider the Date: There are some times of year that stores tend to get an influx of new inventory.  January is one of them- people are trying to get their year end tax deductions!  Another is in the spring- many people clean their closets out when it gets warmer and that leads to an upsurge in donations.

Utilizing these tips you can find some of the best bargains around!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Budget 2011: The Great Clothes Hanger Trick

Hopefully by now you have cleaned out your closets, made your donations and are prepared to sell your valuable unused items.

However if you just can’t bring yourself to part with your clothing I have a suggestion you may try for the new year (remember the average female only wears about 30% of what is in her closet).  It’s very easy and won’t cost you a penny.

Take everything hanging in your closet and adjust the coat hangers so that they are hanging “backwards.”  (I can’t think of any other way to describe it than “backwards.”  If you look at the picture it is the peach hangers.) 

Once you have removed and worn an item from your closet, hang it BACK up the “correct way” (like the teal and red hangers in the picture). 

This way your closet is keeping track of what you ACTUALLY wear.  In a few months all the winter clothes that are still hung backwards need to be donated or sold.  These are items you really do not ever use and are just taking up room.

The same can be done with all summer clothes as well.  By removing these extra items from your house you are creating a better feeling environment with less clutter! 

I will be doing this as well- I know I have WAY too many clothes in my house.  So on New Years Eve I will get everything organized and let you know how many items I have hanging in my closet.  As the year progresses I will purge it down to smaller numbers and let you know how it goes.  Hopefully by this time next year my closets will be much emptier!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Budget 2011: Check Your Bank Statement for Fees

This is the third in a series on things to do BEFORE 2011 to get your budget in order.  To check out my other posts click here and here

Sometime in the next week or so you will probably get a bank statement in the mail.  If you are one of those people who does stuff paperless you will probably log in to check your balance.

When you look at your statement, check it for fees.  If you are paying a monthly fee for your checking account, STOP IT!  Why on earth should you pay to have access to your money?  It’s YOUR money!

Punch Debt in The Face recently did a post about this.  He had banked at Washington Mutual for years fee free.  Then they get bought by Chase and BOOM- a $10 fee pops up.  $120 a year to get to his own money! 

So if you are paying a monthly service fee for your checking account, it is probably (and I am just being polite when I say probably) time to either switch checking accounts or switch banks. 

If they gave you one fee what’s to stop them from giving you another?  So save some cash and make sure your checking accounts are fee free!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Give Freely 12/15 – 12/21

Welcome to Give Freely!

Our goal is to present you each week with freebies or near freebies from your local grocery stores. Because these items are so inexpensive we are hoping that you will spend the extra few cents to pick up a spare item to donate to your community center, church, local food bank or shelter. Even if the items aren’t food, they can often be used in some way!

If you are a blogger who does deals for a supermarket not on this list and would be interested in participating, please send me an e-mail!

This gives you the opportunity to Give Freely!

Here are the great deals this week:

Farm Fresh (click here to see the whole list of deals from The Coupon Challenge- note these deals run through 12/24)

Idahoan Product $1
$0.40/1 Idahoan Product printable
Final: $0.20 each

Swanson Broth Can 14 oz $0.59
$0.75/5 Swanson Broth Can, exp. 1-31-11 (SS 11/07/10)
Final: 5/$1.45

Betty Crocker Potatoes $1.25
$0.50/2 Betty Crocker Boxed Potatoes, exp. 1-29-11 (GM 12/05/10)
$0.50/2 Betty Crocker Boxed Potatoes, exp. 1-15-11 (SS 11/21/10)
Final: 2/$1.50

Food Lion (click here to see the whole list of deals from A Frugal Chick)

Del Monte Canned Vegetables (14.5 – 15.25 oz select varities) $.60 each

Prego Pasta Sauce (23.5 – 24 oz select varities) 3/$5
$1/1 Prego Italian Sauce, exp. 12-31-10 (SS 10/03/10)
$0.75/2 Prego Italian Sauce, exp. 12-31-10 (SS 10/03/10)
$0.75/3 Prego Italian Sauce, exp. 12-31-10 (SS 10/03/10)
Final Price: As low as $.67 each

Gerber 2nd Foods (7 0z) 10/$10

Harris Teeter (click here to see the whole list of deals from Mom on Dealz)

Sister Schubert’s Rolls $1.99
-$0.75 coupon from SS 11/14 or
-$0.50 coupon from SS 11/14
Final=$0.49-$0.99 each depending on coupon used

Betty Crocker Super Moist Cake Mix 10/$10
Frosting $1
-$0.75 coupon for both from GM 11/14
Final=$0.50 each

Betty Crocker Potatoes $1
-$0.50/2 coupon from GM 12/5 or
-$1.00/2 coupon from GM 12/5
Final=$0.50 each

Martin’s (click here to see the whole list of deals from Young and Frugal in VA)

Duncan Hines Chewy Fudge Brownie Mix 10/$10

Del Monte Canned Fruit 10/$10

Betty Crocker Mashed Potoates 4/$5
-$0.50/2 from 12/5 GM or 11/21 SS or 11/14 GM *Doubles to $1/2
Final Price: $0.75 each after coupon

Winn Dixie (click here to see the whole list of deals from Saving Toward a Better Life)

Heinz Gravy $1

Rotel Tomatos $1

Gerber 2 pack First or Second Baby Food $1

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Budget 2011: Clean Out Your Closets

In 2011 I will be doing a short series on how to budget in the New Year.  But there are a few small steps you can take before 2011 to help start things off with a bang!  Last week I did my first post on creating a price book

My next suggestion is to take the time and do some “winter cleaning”.  And the week between Christmas and New Years is a great time to do it.

Now you may ask- what does cleaning out my closets have to do with budgeting for 2011?  Much more than you might think.  Let’s look at some of the reasons to get this project completed BEFORE 2011:

1- Begin the year with “new clothes”!  And nope, I don’t mean the ones under the tree.  Did you know most women only wear 20 – 30% of what is in their closet?  Buried inside your closet are clothes that you have totally forgotten about.  By cleaning everything out “new” pieces will emerge at no cost to you!  A new skirt or shirt, a cute pair of shoes, or a nice comfy sweater will be at your disposal.  New outfits will be created before your eyes!  By starting 2011 with so many new wardrobe pieces, you will minimize the need to go shopping.

2- Finish the year by grabbing the tax write off– Now I am not a tax advisor, but for most people dropping off unwanted items at a local thrift store is a tax write off.  So grab your old belongings that are still in great condition and drop them off where they can be re-sold.  Be sure to get a receipt and throw it in with your 2010 tax information.

3- Make Some Money- Some of your things are probably worth some cash.  Utilize Craigslist and ebay.  Or, if your clothing is good enough, consider a local consignment store where someone does the selling for you in return for a percentage of the profit.  In addition, you can store things in your garage and make plans to have a yard sale in the spring!

4. Paperback Swap- I can’t say enough good things about this site.   If you are an avid reader and want to swap out your old books for some new ones, this is the way to go.  Click here to read my post all about it! 

So take a few hours, get some help and clean out your closets.  Not only will your house feel more organized and less cluttered but it can put some money in your pocket!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Give Freely 12/8 – 12/14

Welcome to Give Freely!

Our goal is to present you each week with freebies or near freebies from your local grocery stores.  Because these items are so inexpensive we are hoping that you will spend the extra few cents to pick up a spare item to donate to your community center, church, local food bank or shelter.  Even if the items aren’t food, they can often be used in some way!

If you are a blogger who does deals for a supermarket not on this list and would be interested in participating, please send me an e-mail

This gives you the opportunity to Give Freely!

Here are the great deals this week:

Dollar General

 Gain Dish Soap $1
– 50¢ coupon from the 11/28 P&G
= 50¢

Farm Fresh (click here to see all the great deals from The Coupon Challenge)

Hormel Chili $1.25
Use $0.55/2 from the 11/07 SS insert
Final: 2/$1.40

Carnation Evaporated Milk $1
Use $0.50/2 from the 11/14 RP insert and HERE
Final: 2/$1

Chex Mix $1.75
Use $0.50/2 from the 11/14 & 12/05
Use $0.50/1 chocolate from the 11/14 GM insert
Final: as low as $0.75 each 

Pillsbury Plain Brownie Mix $0.99
-$0.50 for promo
Use $0.40/1 from the 11/07/RP insert
FREE after coupon & promo

Food Lion (click here to see all the great deals from A Frugal Chick)

Food Lion Canned Vegetables $.50

Campbell’s Tomato or Chicken Noodle Soup $.50

Lipton/Knorr Pasta or Rice Sides $1

Harris Teeter (click here to see the best deals from Mom on Dealz!)

Skippy Peanut Butter  $1.39
Use $0.50/1 Skippy Peanut Butter Product from the RP 11/14 insert
Final=$0.39 each

Krusteaz Muffin Mix B1G1
Use $0.50/1 from the 10/17 and 12/05 SS insert
Final: $0.49 each

International Delight Creamer – $1.25
$0.55/1 International Delight from the SS 11/7 insert
Final=$0.10 each

Kroger (Kroger deals vary by region, so be sure to double check your local ad- click here to see all the deals from My Litter)

Bumble Bee Tuna – $0.50
$0.55/1 Bumble Bee Premium Tuna Pouch, exp. 12-31-10 (SS 09/12/10)
Total: Free if the Premium is included

Wolf Brand Chili – $0.75

Martin’s (click here to see all the deals from Young and Frugal in VA)

Skippy Peanut Butter 3/$5
-$0.50/1 from 11/14 RP *Doubles to $1
Final Price: $0.67 after coupon!

Hunt’s Spaghetti Sauce 5/$5
Kraft Sandwich Shoppe Mayo $1.99
-$0.55/1 from 11/14 SS *Doubles to $1
Final Price: $0.99!

Krusteaz Cookie Mix – $0.99
$1/1 Krusteaz Cookie Mix 10/10/2010 SS Insert (exp 12/31/2010)
Total: FREE after coupon

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Budgeting for 2011: Creating a Price Book

In 2011 I will be doing a short series of articles on creating a grocery budget as well as some other topics (if you have any questions you would like me to address e-mail me!)  I don’t want to start the full series yet because I know the holidays are crazy, but there is a simple step you can take now to help you at the first of the year. 

One of the best tools to save while grocery shopping is keeping a price book or list (I personally did it in excel when I first got the hang of things but lots of people just carry around a small notebook).

In the most basic terms, a price book is a list of how much your normal grocery items cost at local stores.  By taking this book with you when you shop, you will automatically know if you are getting a good deal!

So here are the steps you can follow to begin this process:

1.  For one month, record the name, price and size of everything you buy at the store. Do this as long as it takes to get the normal price for your regular purchases.

2.  Once you have the prices for your items, just compare them when you shop!  Let’s say you pay $.79 at Walmart for Campbell’s Soup, but Harris Teeter has them on sale this week for $.50.  You pull out your book, compare the prices and if it’s a good deal, maybe buy one or two extra.   (Remember many grocery stores now have on-line shopping so you can see their prices without having to go in a store!) 

3.  Remember to update your grocery pricebook anytime you find items for less than the price you recorded in the pricebook. Then this becomes your new baseline price!  The longer you use coupons and search for deals, the lower these baseline prices become!

So for right now. while you are running around grabbing groceries for the holidays, take a few minutes to jot the prices from your receipts down on a piece of paper, in a notebook or on the computer.  Then in January we can start using your new tool to save big!

And if you aren’t feeling very creative, you can use these pricebook worksheets from Money Saving Mom!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Suggestions for Articles?

In my constant pursuit of becoming the best blogger I can be, I would like to flex my muscles and start writing some articles- both for this blog and others, as well as some publications.

My biggest obstacle is that I never know what to write about.  Something I find completely fascinating about saving money, budgeting, shopping or blogging may bore everyone else to death.  And if no one wants to read it, it’s not a very useful post.

So I am asking- what do you want to know about?  It can be anything having to do with couponing, rebates, budgeting, spending, saving, grocery shopping, drug store deals, my limited cooking capabilities, gift giving or anything else along that line.  Don’t be scared to send me something I will have to research- that’s what the web is for!

So if you have something you want to know drop me an e-mail, leave a comment on this post or stick something on the facebook page.

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Give Freely 12/1 – 12/7

Welcome to the second Give Freely post! 

Our goal is to present you each week with freebies or near freebies from your local grocery stores.  Because these items are so inexpensive we are hoping that you will spend the extra few cents to pick up a spare item to donate to your community center, church, local food bank or shelter.  Even if the items aren’t food, they can often be used in some way!

This gives you the opportunity to Give Freely!

Dollar General (click here to see the whole list of deals from The Thrifty Military Wife)

Wolf Brand Chili No Beans 15 oz. $1.25
– 75¢/2 coupon (10/3 SS)

= 87¢ each

Farm Fresh (click here to see the whole list of deals from The Coupon Challenge)

Crystal Farm Cheese $1.50
Use $1/2 from the 11/21 SS insert
Final: 2/$1

Hot Pockets Side Shots $2
Use $1/1 Facebook printable
FREE

Birds Eye Veggies and Steamfresh $1
Use $1/3 from the 11/14 SS insert (excludes steamfresh)
Use $0.50/1 Facebook printable
Final: as low as FREE

Barilla Plus Pasta $2
Use $1/1 printable
FREE

Zone Perfect Bar $0.99
Use $1/1 from the 10/31 SS insert
FREE

Food Lion (click here to see the whole list of deals from A Frugal Chick)

Green Giant Canned Vegetables, 11-15.25 oz., at $1.39 ($.69 each!)

Progresso Classic Soup, 18.5-19 oz., $1
$1/4 Progresso Soup, exp. 1-15-11 (SS 11/21/10)
$1/4 Progresso Soup, exp. 02-13-11 (GM 10/03/2010)
$1/4 Progresso Soup, exp. 1-8-11 (GM 11/14/10)
$1/4 Progresso Soup, exp. 12-18-10 (SS 10/24/10)
Final Price: $.75 each

Harris Teeter (click here to see the whole list of deals from Mom on Dealz)
Green Giant Veggies $0.77
-$0.50/2 coupon from SS 10/24
Final=$0.54 each

Newman’s Own Pasta Sauce BOGO so price for 1 is $1.57
-$0.50 coupon from RP 10/24
Final=$0.57

Walmart (click here to see the complete list of deals from The Thrifty Military Wife)

Nabisco Wheat Thins or Triscuit Crackers $1.98
– $1/1 coupon from the 11/14 SS
– $1/1 Wheat Thins printable
= 98¢

Morton Sea Salt $1
– $1 coupon from the 11/14 RP
= free

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Unusual Things To Do Before Black Friday To Save $$$

We all know the normal things to do before Black Friday (scope out the ads on www.afrugalchick.com, make a list, set your alarm, use the bathroom before you leave the house etc.) but here are some tips you may not think about:

1.  Grab your reuseable shopping bags–  If you are heading to Target you get $.05 per bag you use.   If not, you will have sturdy bags and not get stuck with big awkward paper ones.

2. Throw a bottled water and snack in your bag– don’t wait in line for mall food.  Bring it with you and you can eat in line waiting to check out with your bargains!

3.  Start at a place that will price match– as much as I can’t stand WalMart on Black Friday, their representatives have said they will price match.  So if an item is cheaper at another store and you have the ad, they will match the price.  This may save you some trips.

4.  Call the stores about rare items ahead of time- one of my most vivid Black Friday memories is Sears last year.   There was a nice long line of people waiting for a great deal on a washer and dryer.  The store only had three of them and they had given out tickets to people who had asked for them… on WEDNESDAY NIGHT!  I have no clue if this is common practice but if you want something and think there may be limited quantities call ahead and find out what time they will be giving out tickets.

5.  Leave someone at home on the computer.    If the store you are in has a line two hours long and the same item is available with free shipping on-line, why on earth would you wait in line AND pay sales tax?  Leave someone at home in their pajamas with their cup of coffee- they can find you some great deals too!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Holiday Website #1- Etsy.com

I like getting people unusual gifts. Mostly because I like receiving unusual gifts. My taste in jewelry and art is a bit different from what you would see in a magazine or watching a top ten television show.

So when I want to find a unique gift, I head over to etsy.com. Wikipedia describes Etsy much better than I ever could: “Etsy is a social commerce website focused on handmade or vintage items as well as art and craft supplies. These items cover a wide range including art, photography, clothing, jewelry, edibles, bath & beauty products, quilts, knick-knacks and toys. Many individuals also sell craft supplies like beads, wire, jewelry making tools and much more.”

Now, it’s true you can’t use coupons on Etsy, but there are a few ways you can make shopping on Etsy frugal.

1. Shop Local. When you go into the buy section of Etsy, you can select the option of looking local. Type in the name of your town, or the biggest town nearby, and it will pull up all the stores in your area and show when the merchandise was last updated. If you find a local store you can contact the owner and ask for a discount if you pick up the item. They may even have a storefront where you won’t have to buy on line if you would like to look at more merchandise. Without shipping and handling, you may be able to get a better deal.

2. Search by price. One of the worst things about looking for gifts is knowing your budget and finding that perfect item just out of  price range. By using the advanced search function, you can search for the item you want and put the maximum amount you want to spend. That way, you won’t have something more expensive catch your eye.

3. Have your product created. Etsy has a really neat function called Alchemy. If you have a specific item you would like created, you can put it on their posting board with a price. So if your daughter would like a bracelet with her name on it, you can list that on the board and the price you would like to pay. If one of the artists on Etsy is willing to make it for that amount, they will place a bid to create it. The lowest bidder with a design you like gets to create it. It’s secure and you can get some beautiful customized pieces.

So if you are looking for something unique for the holidays, don’t run around town getting frustrated because nothing has quite the right feel. Check out Etsy for some great deals!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


77 Days Until December 25th

As of today, October 7, 2010, there are 77 days until Christmas (if you celebrate Hanukah, Kwanza or Festivus you don’t have too much longer either). It’s time to start planning, so you don’t go broke doing your shopping.

In 2009 the average American household spent $417 on Christmas shopping. When money is already tight, $417 can really make a difference. There are a few simple things you can do to try to keep a cap on your spending and not begin 2011 in the hole.

1. Make a list now. Sit down and figure out who is getting gifts. (This one here from Real Simple magazine is pretty basic if you don’t want to create your own.) If the list is lengthy discuss with your family drawing names or doing a sort of Secret Santa arrangement. If you are comfortable ask your friends if you all could skip doing gifts this year and spend some extra time together instead. Talk to your spouse and maybe this year skip gifts to each other.

2. Take that list and give it a dollar amount. Harness the power of the internet and find out how much each item on your list will be. Or, if you are a frugal shopper, set the price you are willing to pay for the item. That way when you become overwhelmed by the sales, you know what price you are looking for.

3. Make sure you have the cash. I am a BIG fan of not having credit cards. Make a goal this year to only pay cash for items (that means on-line shopping with the debit card, not credit). Since you are starting your shopping now, you should be able to spread it out over the next little bit and not have to go into debt for the holidays. If you know there is no way you can afford the gifts you want to give without going into debt, it might be time to revise the list with some less expensive items.

4. Make a home for your receipts. Receipts are a huge part of holiday giving. Sizes change, colors might be a bit off or what you thought was the perfect gift could be completely wrong. Be sure to have everything in one place where it can not be lost. Also, if you buy something now and then it goes on sale later, you might be able to take the receipt to the store and get some cash back!

Over the next few days, I will share some of the websites I love to use when I shop. Each of these can help you save valuable time and money as you prepare.

Let’s make it a great, frugal holiday!

It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.