Monday, April 20, 2015

Book Review: Finding Me

Finding Me is a novel by Kathryn Cushman that delves into a woman's previously unknown family history. I'm not typically one to jump into a fiction book, but this story is easy to get into. The characters are well developed and you get just enough of their back story to understand their personalities but not enough so as to bore you with the details.

The book holds the reader's interest throughout, as there are a few twists and turns that I didn't anticipate. It's easy to put yourself in the main character's shoes and think about what you would do if you found out what she learned.

This would make a great read for a vacation or a lazy weekend at home.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for writing an honest review. I did not receive any other compensation.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Super Savings Saturday: Meijer, Giant Eagle, Kroger and Target

Meijer:
Scotch Expressions tape $1, buy 10 get 11th free, used $1/1 coupons = 48 for free!
4 bags apples $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free
bag carrots $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free
2 bags spinach $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free
4 shredded cheese $2 each, used 2 x $1/2 peelies and $1/$6 cheese purchase coupon
buns $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free
orange juice $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free, used $1 off any refrigerated juice coupon =free
bayer aspirin 2.19, -$1/1 manufacturer's coupon and -$1 off any pain relief store coupon
broccoli crowns $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free
half watermelon 3.37 -free $3 in produce when you spend $75
cereal 1.50 manager's special -$1 off any cereal store coupon
5 smart balance cooking spray $1.99 each -$1 off each mPerk
3 foil 1.29 each
3 wax paper 1.39 each
2 tide 4.49 each, -2 x $3/1 any tide pods mPerk
I paid $25.52.

Giant Eagle: I got 3 soup, 11 band-aids and 3 first aid bags free with coupons. I just had to pay tax of $1.54.

Kroger: I found some close-out deals and manager's specials, including $1.99 gallon milk, .30 cookie cutter, 1.59 cutting board, 2.15 Starbucks K-cups (after $1/1 coupon), Huggies and Luvs diapers for $1 to $2 per bag after manager's special and coupons, free Easter candy after coupons and I got my free Friday download item. I was thrilled about the diapers, as I found lots in my two year old's size!

Target:
Cat litter .49 each after cartwheel, Target coupon and store coupon. I got 4 and donated them to the cat shelter. I also got some Easter clearance candy with coupons, a pair of pants for my son, some crackers, first-aid gauze, anti-itch cream and a disposable razor.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Book Review: God Made You Special

God Made You Special is a Berenstain Bears book written by Mike Berenstain. This book is for kids age 4 to 8.

The story within the book is of everyone's favorite bears. The characters explain that Tommy, who is playing in a baseball game, has his own way of doing things that might not make a lot of sense to anyone else. Near the end of the story, one of the other bears just can't figure out what the deal is with Tommy. One of the adults explains that we're all different and that we all have special attributes that make us unique. It's okay to not be the same as everybody else.

I feel like this is an important lesson for all of us, including us parents as we read the book along with our kids.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for writing an honest review. I did not receive any other compensation.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Super Savings Saturday: Meijer, Target, Giant Eagle

This week was spring break for my second grader, and it was also a soggy week. We went to preschool classes but that was it. I did the main shopping trip by myself and went later in the week for a few more things.

I got:
floss $1 -.75/1 mPerk
always discreet liners $2.79, used $3/1 coupons adjusted down
2 tea tree oil 10.59 - buy 1 get 1 free
2 vitamin b-12 6.29 -buy 1 get 1 free, -$2/2 nature made vitamins, -$2/$15 vitamins purchase store coupon
shirt $3 -$2/1 mPerk
baseball shirt 1.60 -$5/1 mPerk adjusted down
OSU shirt $1.20 -$5/1 mPerk adjusted down
MLB shirt $5 -$5/1 mPerk
2 muller yogurt 1.09 - bogo
cashew milk 3.29 -$1/1 mPerk
7 pounds apples .77/#
bread .88
tomatoes .89 - 50% mPerk
grapes .98/#
fruit cup .99 - 50% mPerk
hamburger helper 1.29 - 50% mPerk
canned beans 1.39 - 50% mPerk
chi chis salsa 1.89 - 50% mPerk
chi chis tortillas 1.89 - 50% mPerk
jello pudding 1.98 - 50% mPerk
peach fruit cup 2.19 - 50% mPerk
hunt's snack pack 2.50 - 50% mPerk
peanut butter 2.50 - 50% mPerk
4 string cheese 3.49 each, used 4 x $.75/1 coupons and 1.50/$11 cheese purchase store coupon
entenmann's donuts 3.99 - 50% mPerk
entenmann's muffins 3.99 - 50% mPerk
2 gallons milk $2 each -.50/2 mPerk
orville redenbacher's popcorn 3.50 - 50% mPerk
velveeta shells & cheese 2.50 - 50% mPerk
strawberries $1
fruit preserves 75% off .75 manager's special
-5% mCard reward

On my second trip, I got 2 more gallons of milk, 1 more Silk, more berries,  yogurt, cooking spray and vegetables. I also had mPerks for free 52 ounce fancy milk that retails for $3.50 each!

Target:
I got a few Easter clearance items, a mattress protector, two razors, four boxes of crackers and one 2-liter of pop and spent just under $10.

Giant Eagle:
I got band-aids free, they were on sale for $1 and I had .50/1 coupons that doubled. First aid kits had peelies on them to make them free when buying 3 band-aids. I bought lots of band-aids! I donated a bunch and kept some. I also got the free e-vantage paper towels.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Super Savings Saturday: Meijer, Aldi, Target

Aldi: I got milk for $1.89 per gallon. This deal was limit of 4 per visit, so I got 4 on the first day of the sale and another 4 on the last day of the sale.

Meijer:
I got band-aids (on sale, coupon and got back catalina), bananas, asparagus, buns and margarine.

Target:
I used the in-ad $10 gift card when you spend $50 on groceries. I got frozen corn, coconut milk, coffee, bacon, sauce, soup, cheese, eggs and m&ms. I also got 2 cans of cat food, some crayons, a candle and an extra nightlight. I spent $11.38 on my first visit. Later in the week, I went back for bagels, more coffee, more bacon, more vegetables and a few other grocery items.

Book Review: The Great Big Pressure Cooker Book

The Great Big Pressure Cooker Book by by Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough offers
a collection of recipes to make using your pressure cooker.


I'll admit that pressure cookers scare me and honestly I'd thought they were only for canning foods. I don't have one, but I know people who use them, but only for canning.

Some of the recipes in here sound pretty good and I was surprised that there were breakfast ideas such as polenta and congee. 

Most of the recipes are focused around meat, as you can purchase tough cuts of meat and soften them up in the cooker.

I think this would be a great book for newlyweds or someone who is interested in trying this technique. My only critiques are that there are not any pictures of the finished foods and that the binding is just paperback. Spiral binding works so much better for a cookbook.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for writing an honest review. I did not receive any other compensation.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

March Decluttering

  • I donated 1 huge bag of handmade hats.
  • I donated 3 large bags of supplies to the community center's art room.
  • I sent my husband with some snacks from items we had a lot of in the stockpile.
  • I sent my husband with a bag of snack items we didn't like, to share at work. They were all unopen items from multi-packs and things like that.
  • I filled up 7 large trash bags of items for donation.
  • I filled 2 large trash bags of food and toiletries for the food pantry.
  • I donated two bags of cat supplies to the no-kill cat shelter.