How to Coupon

Easy to Make Super Bowl Party Food

Posted on Tuesday, January 27th, 2015 at 7:00 am
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Super Bowl Party TableEvery Super Bowl party needs plenty of snacks for your guests to consume while watching the game. It will tide everyone over until the burgers are done or the pizza arrives. There are many choices of easy to make Super Bowl party food that are inexpensive and simple to serve. Start with some of these ideas.

Start Simple
Set up an area where the snacks will be served. It could be the kitchen table, a counter, or a card table that has been placed near the TV. Make sure the table has plenty of plates and napkins. Stick to snacks that are “finger food”. Those are easy to serve and easy to eat while watching the game.

Grab a big serving bowl and pour an entire bag of chips into it. Open a jar of dip (whichever kind your guests prefer) and place it on a small plate. Put a spoon onto that plate so guests can give themselves some dip to go with their chips.

You can put together a plate of cut vegetables that is much less expensive than the party trays sold at grocery stores. Put a container of ranch dip in the middle of a large plate. Arrange cut vegetables around it. Some great choices are: baby carrots, small pieces of celery, broccoli, cauliflower, cherry or grape tomatoes, and olives. Put a spoon on the plate so guests can serve themselves some veggie dip.

Minimal Cooking
Sausages are a popular Super Bowl party snack. Cut up several kielbasa (or your favorite type of sausage) and quickly cook the pieces in a skillet. Serve them on one plate, with toothpicks nearby.

Another option is bacon wrapped cocktail sausages. Wrap each mini-sausage in some bacon. Use a toothpick to hold it together. Put them all on a baking sheet. Bake at 325 for 40 to 45 minutes or until the bacon has cooked and is starting to brown.

Want to add some carbs? One very easy, and tasty, option is to make some popcorn. Melt some butter (or garlic butter if you prefer) to pour over it before serving. Put it in a large bowl that can be passed around. Another easy option is french fries. Who doesn’t love hot, crisp french fries? Put a bottle of ketchup on the snack table.

Bring Food In
Will you be ordering pizzas? Make sure to add some garlic bread (or bread sticks) and wings to your order. These little extras are easy to eat and filling. The food may get to your party quicker if you have someone go pick it up rather than wait for it to be delivered.

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Crockpot Recipes for Your Super Bowl Party

Posted on Thursday, January 22nd, 2015 at 7:00 am
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Crock PotWhat are you going to serve at your Super Bowl party? Plan ahead, and you can use your crockpot to make some delicious Super Bowl party food Here are are few ideas to get started with.

Crockpots are awesome because they let you “set it and forget it” instead of being stuck standing by the stove. A crockpot can keep the food inside it warm until it is ready to be served. Crock-pots make it easy for guests to cook something at home and bring it to the Super Bowl party to share.

Crock-Pot Cheeseburger Joes
You may have heard of “Sloppy Joes”. They are typically cooked in a skillet on the stove and then served in a hamburger bun. The Crock-Pot Ladies have a great recipe for a crockpot version of this simple, yet tasty, food.

Their recipe makes 8 to 10 servings. You will need 2 pounds of lean ground beef, diced onion, diced red bell peppers, a can of diced tomatoes, some ground mustard, oregano, and barbecue seasoning. You will also need 16 ounces of Velveeta cheese (that has been cut into cubes). Cover the crockpot and cook it on low for 2 to 4 hours. Make sure you have hamburger buns to serve it on.

Marsha Goodemoot’s Slow-Cooker Turkey Chili
This crockpot recipe comes from Delish.com. It makes 6 servings. The use of turkey, instead of ground beef, makes this recipe a little bit healthier. You will need an 8 quart crockpot.

Start with 1 pound of turkey that you will brown in a skillet. Delish suggests you use 93 percent fat free turkey. You will also need chili powder, minced garlic, diced onion, diced green bell pepper, a can of diced tomatoes, a can of kidney beans, and a can of chili beans. When it is ready to be served, add a dollop of reduced fat sour cream on top of the chili.

Slow-Cooker Sausage and Peppers
A blog that is delightfully named “Pass the Sushi” has a great crock-pot recipe for your Super Bowl party. It makes messy sandwiches that are designed for people who have big appetites.

You will need some olive oil, 1 pound of ground sweet sausage, 1 and a half pounds of ground beef, 2 cans of fire roasted tomatoes, 1 can of tomato sauce, sliced onion, red pepper, and green pepper, and some sliced provolone or mozzarella cheese. You also need some fresh rolls to use as the bread for the sandwich.

Start by browning the sausage. After you have all the ingredients in the crock-pot, you will need to cook it on low for 5 to 7 hours. Toast the bread rolls with a slice of mozzarella on each until each is golden brown and the cheese starts melting.

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Where to Find Free Printable Valentines for Kids

Posted on Tuesday, January 20th, 2015 at 7:00 am
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set of handmade valentines cardsIt won’t be long before people are celebrating Valentine’s Day. This holiday brings an extra expense for parents who must supply valentines for every student in their children’s elementary school classes. One way to cut back on the expense is to use free printable valentines instead of buying multiple boxes of them. Here is a quick look at where to find free printable valentines for kids.

Disney Family has a variety of free, printable valentines designed for children. Each group is in color and features popular Disney characters. You can print out multiple copies of the valentines for free so that you will have enough for your child’s classmates.

Disney Princess Valentines
Disney has a set of Disney Princess Valentine Cards that are free to print out. They suggest you use either regular paper or cardstock (if you want to make the valentines more durable). Each sheet prints out 9 Disney Princess valentines in color. You get three each of Belle, Tiana, and Ariel.

Disney Frozen Valentines
Is your child in love with the movie “Frozen”? He or she might want hand out valentines that feature the characters from this popular movie. Again, Disney suggests that an adult print them out on regular paper or cardstock. This set includes 8 valentines on one page.

Disney Fairies Valentines
There is a set of Disney Fairies Valentines that can be printed out on regular paper or cardstock for free. This set features three of the Disney Fairies: Tinker Belle, Rosetta, and Fawn. Each sheet has 9 valentines on it.

Kmart still has a page of free printable valentines for kids. Each valentine has two red and pink cartoon elephants who are “holding trunks” with each other. Above them are two hearts: one that says “To:” and one that says “From:”. Each sheet has 4 valentines on it.

Snapfish has a set of 8 valentines that are free to print out. Each has one or two cute cartoon animals on them. There is room to write who the valentine is to and who it is from. It might be best for a parent to cut out the individual valentines. They fit very close together on the page!

Snapfish also has a set of 8 free printable valentines for kids that feature cartoon foods. Each comes with a cute little saying. For example, the one with the ice cream cone says “You’re sweet!” There is room on each valentine to write who it is to and who it is from. Parents will probably want to cut out the valentine’s for their child. Just like with the animal version, they are very close together on the page.

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Where to Find Coupons Online

Posted on Thursday, January 15th, 2015 at 7:00 am
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Using laptopCoupons can help you to save a lot of money on groceries. They can help stretch your dollar and prevent you from breaking your budget. Of course, before you can use coupons you have to be able to find them! Here are some quick tips about where to find coupons online.

Did you know that you can find plenty of printable coupons right here at FreeCoupons.com? Click the tab at the top of the page that says “Printable Coupons”. You will find coupons from Coupons.com, Savings.com, hopster, SmartSource, redplum, and SavingStar. Print out the ones that you like and bring them with you to the grocery store!

Grocery Store Websites
Loyalty cards do more than give you access to “members only” sales. They also can be an excellent source of online coupons! The best thing about these coupons is that they are digital.

Visit the store’s website and select the coupons that you want to use. They will automatically be added to your loyalty card. All you have to do is remember to bring that card with you to the store – and the coupons come along for the ride. The digital coupons you selected will automatically “ring up” at the register when you make your purchase.

Manufacturer’s Websites
What are the brands that your family uses the most? It might be worth your time to visit the websites for those brands. There might be valuable coupons on their website.

Typically, you will need to sign up with the brand’s website, and let it know that you want to receive newsletters, before you can access the coupons. If it is your favorite brand, it might be worth it. Those that do not have a bunch of coupons on their website will, more than likely, send customers some coupons in the emailed newsletter.

Facebook
You many have noticed that Facebook attracts a whole lot of brands to it. Those brands make their own Facebook page and post things that they believe will influence people to buy their products. Once in a while, a brand will offer a special coupon that can only be accessed through their Facebook page.

It used to be common for brands on Facebook to make the coupon accessible to everyone – even those who don’t have a Facebook account. More recently, this changed. Today, it is not unusual for a brand to require a person not only to have a Facebook account, but also to give the brand their email address before they can access a coupon. It may seem a bit tedious, but it is possible to get coupons from Facebook.

Department Store Websites
Target has coupons on their website that can be printed out. Walmart also offers printable coupons. These coupons can only be used in the store that the coupon came from.

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How to Start a Stockpile

Posted on Tuesday, January 13th, 2015 at 7:00 am
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Shopping List and Food PantryAre you thinking about starting your very own stockpile? Many families rely on their stockpile to get them through the times when money is tight. It allows you to shop from what you have instead of spending money at the grocery store. Combine couponing with your stockpile and you can save money. Here are some tips to help you start a stockpile.

Where will you put the stockpile?
Before you can start a stockpile you need to figure out the answer to a very important question. Where are you going to put it? You will be collecting up a whole lot of food. It has to be stored in a place that you can easily access every day. Ideally, that location will not be one that is in the way.

A kitchen closet or pantry can become an ideal stockpile. Another option is to put the stockpile along the walls of your basement. This solution will require you to obtain plenty of shelves. Others put up shelves in their garage and put the stockpile there. The thing to keep in mind about the garage is the temperature. Not all foods are going to survive extreme heat or cold.

Measure your freezer space.
Would you like to stockpile frozen foods? Take the time to measure how much freezer space you actually have. When you are first starting your stockpile, it is a good idea to buy less frozen food than you think will fit into your freezer. It may take a while until you figure out the right amount to buy. Obviously, buying more than will fit into your freezer is going to be problematic and may lead to waste.

Start buying in bulk.
First, take the time to figure out the kinds of foods that your family uses a lot of. Next, do some price checking. It is possible that the cost per item in a bulk order could be less than buying the same amount of individual items.

Now would be a good time to get a membership to Costco, Sam’s Club, or other stores that sell bulk foods. Don’t go overboard, though. You don’t want the food to expire before it gets used. When your supply gets low, do another price check. The price of the bulk order may or may not be the best at that time.

Revise your coupon strategy.
People who go grocery shopping and buy enough food for one week have a different couponing strategy than those who are intending to start a stockpile. Pay close attention to changes in a store’s coupon policy. Do they double coupons? Is there a limit on how many coupons you can use in one transaction? Find out so you won’t be unpleasantly surprised in the check out line.

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5 Steps to Learn How to Coupon Now

Posted on Thursday, January 8th, 2015 at 10:17 am
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Online Coupon

What’s your New Year’s Resolution this year? If it includes learning to save money with coupons, you’ve come to the right place! At FreeCoupons.com, we provide you with the newest and best coupons available to print and load to your shopper cards. We even provide you with links to couponing apps that give you cash rebates when you purchase certain items.

Learning to coupon is actually very simple and we’re here to help. It takes some practice but the savings is worth the work. Here are 5 easy steps to get you started now using FreeCoupons.com to save you money!

  1. Pick up a Sunday Newspaper. Each Sunday, you should pick up a Sunday Paper. About 50% of deals use newspaper coupons, Choose a larger city paper over smaller city papers if possible since these have more coupons than small local papers. At the end of each week, visit our Sunday Coupon Preview page to see a preview of that weekend’s upcoming coupons. Or if you want so skip the purchase of a paper, order your coupon inserts directly from SundayCouponInserts.com and they’ll be shipped directly to your home! Give yourself time to collect newspaper coupons. You won’t be able to take advantage of all the deals right away since many deals use coupons from past newspapers. But keep collecting them each week, and in about 6-8 weeks, you’ll have all the coupons you need to snag every deal that you want!
  2. Visit our Coupon Matchups page. Before you shop, take a look at the Coupon Matchups we have posted. There you’ll find over 20 stores’ weekly sales matched up with any available coupons that you can use with that sale to make your final price even lower. Simply click on the store you want to shop, and the newest post about that store’s deals will be at the top of your screen. You’ll see the best deals are marked with a STAR but be sure to click the button that looks like this: click here to see the complete list button to see a FULL list of all of the store’s deals that week. The starred items are the ones you want to be sure to buy because that means they’re at one of their lowest prices. Buy as many of this item as you have coupons for and add the items to your stockpile. Then you’ll have the items on hand when you need them instead of having to purchase items as you need them.
  3. Use our Shopping List Feature: Next to each item in a store’s Coupon Matchups page is a checkbox. If you find a item you want to purchase, check the box and it will add the item to your shopping list. You’ll see your list pop up in the lower right hand corner of your screen. Continue to add items to your list, even from multiple stores, and when you’re finished, you can email this list to yourself. Simply type in your email in the box in the shopping list in your lower right hand corner of the screen. When your list arrives in your inbox, you’ll see all your items, organized by category. Any coupons needed for the deal will also be included. From your email, you can click on each link, print or load the coupon, and prepare for your shopping trip. Easy!
  4. “Find A Deal” Search Feature: If you are looking for other deals on a specific item, visit our Find A Deal page where you can search for a specific item or brand and see which store has the best deal.
  5. Use our Coupon Database: If you are wondering if an item or brand has a coupon, simply search for it using our Coupon Database. From there your can print the coupon, load it to your shopper card, or find out which newspaper you’ll find the coupon in.

Happy Couponing! Don’t be afraid to ask questions if you have them!

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How to Understand the Wording on Coupons

Posted on Thursday, January 8th, 2015 at 7:00 am
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Clipping CouponsA new year inspires people to make the resolution to start saving money. One good way to save money on groceries (and more) is to use coupons. Those who are new to couponing may find the wording on the coupons, the abbreviations, or the “coupon language” to be confusing. Here are some descriptions of what all that confusing jargon really means.

One Per Transaction
The coupon says “one per transaction”. This means you can use that coupon one time as you make your purchase. For example, let’s say the coupons saves you $1.00 when you buy three bottles of a certain brand of dish soap. The “one per transaction” coupon means you can use it on exactly 3 bottles of dish soap from that brand.

It also means that you can’t use a second, identical, coupon to save one more dollar on 3 more bottles of dish soap during the same transaction. To get around this, some people get back in line after making their first transaction with 3 more bottles and another coupon. They are now making a new transaction.

One Per Customer
This means that the coupon can only be used one time by an individual customer. Let’s say the coupon also says “buy one box of cereal, get one free”. You are allowed to purchase two boxes of that cereal, use the coupon, and get one for free.

What if you have another, identical, coupon? You can’t use it. It says “one per customer” and you already used one. Some people get around this limitation by sending their spouse through the check out line with two more boxes of that cereal and one more copy of the coupon.

Buy One Get One Free
This lovely phrase is often shortened to “BOGO”. If you see this on a coupon it means you will get something for free at the time that the coupon is used. For example, the coupon might say “buy one can of tuna, get a second one free”. You pay for one can of tuna, use the coupon, and are given the second can for free.

The thing to be aware of are the limitations on the coupon. You have to be certain you have picked up the correct brand of the product the coupon is for. The coupon might limit you to only certain sizes of that product. Make sure the get the right ones!

Redeemable At
This phrase is very confusing! It makes people think they have to use the coupon at the store listed on the coupon. However, the coupon is actually saying that the store listed on it carries the product the coupon is for. You can use that coupon at any store that also carries that same product.

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Free Apps that Can Help You to Get Fit

Posted on Tuesday, January 6th, 2015 at 7:00 am
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Couple at gymAre you hoping to lose weight, eat healthier, or exercise more this year? There’s an app for that! Actually, there are several apps that might help you reach your weight loss and health goals. Here are a few that you might want to check out that are free to download.

Lose It!
This is quite possibly the most appropriately named weight loss app out there. It can be downloaded for free from iTunes or Google Play. The Lose It app is available on Android, iOS, Nook, Kindle, and the Web.

The Lose It app helps you set goals for weight loss, exercise, macronutrient intake, blood pressure, sleep, and more. It also offers you a plan that may help you to achieve those goals. Calorie counting is very simple with this app. It has a database of thousands of restaurant, grocery store, and brand-name food for you to put into your calorie tracker. These are just a few of the things the Lose It app can do.

MyFitnessPal
MyFitnessPal is an app that can be downloaded for free from either iTunes or Google Play. It is a calorie counter and diet tracker.

This app gives you access to the world’s largest nutrition and calorie database that includes over 4 million foods. You can browse through those foods and quickly add them to the food diary that is in the app. The web and mobile versions of this app sync automatically, so your food diary will always be up to date. You can sign in at the MyFitnessPal website with either your Facebook or email account.

iRunner
The iRunner app is available to download for free from iTunes and Google Play. This app is a running workout and cardio tracker that can be used to monitor your indoor or outdoor training. It can track distance, route, speed, heart rate, and time. The app can be used with pedometers like Fitbit and Jawbone UP.

It has built in GPS and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) support. You can use the app to plan and map your route while jogging, running, or walking. It gives you voice feedback, in-workout pictures, online workout access, and more. This app comes from iTMP Technology Inc., who have several other exercise related apps that you might be interested in.

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What to Buy in January

Posted on Thursday, January 1st, 2015 at 7:00 am
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Woman sleeping on white backgroundAre you tired of shopping yet? There are some awesome annual sales that happen in January that you can take advantage of. One great way to save money is to make sure you buy things during the annual sales. Miss the sale, and the prices will go back up! Here are some things that you should buy in January.

Linens
In 1878, a Philadelphia department store held the very first “White Sale”. The purpose was to bring in customers during a time of the year when sales tended to drop off. At the time, all sheets, pillowcases, and other bedding, were white in color. The “White Sales” still go on today, but may have a different name. It’s been quite some time since all bedding and towels were sold in just one color!

January is a good time to get new pillows or to buy a new bed set. Need some new sheets? This is the month to buy them. You will probably find sales on towels (for both kitchen and bathroom), too.

Socks and Underwear
Victoria’s Secret usually has a big sale on bras, underwear, and everything else they sell in January. In general, this influences department stores to also have a sale on similar items. Somewhere along the way, socks got included in these annual sales. January is a good time to go replace socks, bras, and underwear that have worn out with brand new ones.

Visit a National Park
January 19 is Martin Luther King Jr. Day. It is one of the “Fee Free” days offered by the National Park Service. January is a good month to plan a vacation to a National Park. In addition to January 19, there are more “Fee Free” days coming up in 2015. They include: February 14 – 16 (President’s Day weekend), April 18 – 19 (opening weekend of National Park Week), August 25 (National Park Service Birthday), September 26 (National Public Lands Day) and November 11 (Veterans Day).

Fitness Equipment
Did your New Year’s Resolution include a desire to get fit and lose weight? That is one of the most popular resolutions that people make in January. It just so happens to be the same time of year when fitness equipment goes on sale. If you were planning on buying a treadmill or an elliptical machine, now is the time to make that purchase.

Christmas Decorations
The first week of January is the very end of the after Christmas sales. This is your last chance to pick up a replacement string of lights, some extra ornaments, or a brand new plastic tree, at a very low price. It might be a good idea to make sure you have the storage space for these items before you head out to the stores.

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Free Kids Events in January

Posted on Tuesday, December 30th, 2014 at 7:00 am
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art suppliesYour budget might be a little strained after all the holiday spending is over. Fortunately, there are some craft, building, and other fun events for kids that are offered free of charge. Some will require parents to register their children ahead of time in order to attend the event. Others allow kids to just drop in. Here is a list of some upcoming free kids events that will take place in January.

Pottery Barn Kids
Pottery Barn Kids stores will have a “Noon Year’s Eve” event for parents to take their children to on December 31, 2014. Kids can celebrate the new year without having to stay up late. Kids get to decorate and keep a 2015 memory box and use noisemakers when the clock strikes noon.

Home Depot Kids Workshops
Home Depot offers free building events for kids who are between the ages of 5 and 12. Parents must register their child for the event. Kids will receive a free Workshop Apron, commemorative pin, and a certificate of achievement. They also get to take home the project they made.

January 3, 2015: Learn how to build a mini sled – Kids will put together a small sled.

Lakeshore Learning
Lakeshore Learning offers free craft events for children who are 3 years of age or older. No reservations are necessary. The events start at 11:00 in the morning and end at 3:00 in the afternoon.

January 3, 2015: Beary Warm Earmuffs – Kids will put together earmuffs that look like fluffy bears.

January 10, 2015: Sweet Dream Catcher – Kids will put together their very own dream catcher.

January 17, 2015: Crafty Catapult – Kids will use craft sticks, tape, and a plastic cup to make their very own little catapult.

January 24, 2015: My Friends Photo Board – Kids will decorate a photo board that has clothespins on it. The clothespins can hold photos of their friends.

January 31, 2015: Masquerade Mask – Kids will decorate their own masquerade mask with a variety of craft supplies.

LEGO Store
LEGO store offer a Mini Model Build event once a month. It is for children who are ages 6 to 14. The event begins at 5:00 in the evening (and is offered “while supplies last”).

January 6, 2015: Alien and Space Dog – Kids will put together a mini-build of a green alien and his green space dog.

January is a good month to get into the habit of taking your kids to story time events. Your local library might be offering free story time events on certain days. Some Barnes & Noble stores have story time events once a week. Pottery Barn Kids stores also offer story time events. The best way to find out more details is to check the store’s website.

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