How to Coupon

Frugal Valentine’s Day Date Ideas

Posted on Thursday, February 5th, 2015 at 7:00 am
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Valentines Day DinnerThere are plenty of couples that will go out to dinner together on Valentine’s Day. This traditional Valentine’s Day date can be expensive – and the restaurant will almost certainly be crowded. Fortunately, there are plenty of other, more frugal, Valentine’s Day date ideas that you can do instead. Which of these ideas works best for you and your significant other?

Dinner at Home
Are you someone who loves to cook? Show off your skills in the kitchen by cooking a lovely Valentine’s Day dinner (and dessert). The time, and effort, you put into it are certain to impress your special someone. Everyone likes to be taken care of and cooking is a way that many people express their love for another person.

One advantage of dining at home is that it can be just the two of you. Restaurants are almost always crowded on Valentine’s Day and that can make the date less enjoyable. Another advantage is that you can pick whatever you want to cook and make it they way both of you like. Dinner at home will almost certainly be less expensive than dinner at a fancy restaurant.

Romantic Movie Night
Pick out some romantic movies to watch together. It would be a good idea to browse through the selections on Netflix ahead of time. Pick a bunch of romantic movies that will be nice to watch together.

Make some popcorn. Consider having a glass of wine. Snuggle on the couch with your significant other. If you are already paying for Netflix, then it won’t cost anything extra to watch some movies on Valentine’s Day.

Valentine’s Day Postponed
Not everyone is a fan of Valentine’s Day. There are plenty of people who view Valentine’s Day as a commercial holiday. They simply don’t feel a need to buy candy and flowers, or go out to dinner, on February 14. It just isn’t their “thing”.

There is an advantage to having this mindset. Buying a box of chocolate, or a bouquet of flowers, during the after-Valentine’s Day sales is a lot less expensive than buying it before the holiday. It will also be much easier to get a dinner reservation days after Valentine’s Day than on February 14.

Remember Together
Valentine’s Day is an opportunity for a couple to reconnect and remember happy moments that they shared together. Where did the two of you have your first date? Where did you go on your honeymoon? Valentine’s Day is a good time to re-create that excitement by returning to those places.

It might not be possible to return to a restaurant that has closed, or to take another honeymoon. Instead, take the time to look through photos, and watch videos, of those happy times together. Share some wine and chocolates as you take a trip down memory lane.

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Save on In Season Produce in February

Posted on Tuesday, February 3rd, 2015 at 12:57 pm
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LemonadeYou can save money on fresh produce if you buy it while it is in season. Some foods remain in season for a few months, while others have a shorter span of time while they are at the peak of freshness. Plan your meals to include some in season produce for variety and savings.

What’s still in season?
Many of the fruits and vegetables that were in season during January will remain in season through February. The growth cycle of plants doesn’t always match to what the calendar says. You can continue to enjoy oranges, grapefruits and tangerines through February. Each of these citrus fruits contains some vitamin C. Pears will also stay in season this month.

What about the vegetables? The ones that remain in season through both January and February are, once again, the veggies that people tend to have strong feelings about. You either love them or you hate them! These vegetables include: beets, Brussels sprouts, kale, rhubarb and sweet potatoes.

What is no longer in season?
Every month, there are some fruits and vegetables that go out of season. Their prices will go up until about a year from now (when they come into season again). It is possible to find some of these fruits and veggies at the grocery store – but the price could be higher now.

Apples are now out of season. Say goodbye to the pomegranates and passion fruits. Kiwi and satsumas are going to be harder to find.

Sadly, potatoes go out of season in February. Swede (which is something like a turnip) is also going out of season now. Other root vegetables, like the Jerusalem artichoke and celeriac go out of season in February. Chicory is also no longer in season.

What is newly in season for February?
Lemons are now in season. Those of you who live in a warm climate, and have a lemon tree in your yard, can expect to receive plenty of lemons in February.

Some root vegetables go into season during February. They include the turnip and parsnips. You might be able to substitute one of them for the root vegetables that are no longer in season.

Other new vegetable additions include arugula and lettuce. Use some of those in your salads instead of the kale that has gone out of season. Others include asparagus, cabbage, carrots, and celery (not to be confused with celeriac). Onions and shallots also are in season during February.

February is a good month to start using some fresh herbs in your cooking. Cilantro, dill, and fennel are now in season. Substitute the fresh versions for the dried ones you have been using.

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Free Kids Events in February

Posted on Thursday, January 29th, 2015 at 7:00 am
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Childrens hand with pencil draws the heartThe weather in February can be very cold. Naturally, this tends to make people want to stay home. There are only so many things at home that will entertain your children before they get bored. Take them to some free kids events that will be happening in February. It may be worth braving the cold weather in an effort to avoid “cabin fever”.

LEGO Stores
February 3, 2015: LEGO stores will hold a Mini Model Build that begins at 5:00 in the evening. It is “while supplies last”. The event is for kids ages 6 to 14. Kids will build a Mini Model Space Shuttle.

Pottery Barn Kids
February 6 – 14, 2015: Pottery Barn Kids has partnered with Bright Horizons Foundation for Children for this event. The “Valentine’s Day Card Making Station” invites kids to create one Valentine to give away to a child in need and one to take home to their favorite someone.

February 10, 2015: Pottery Barn Kids will have a Valentine’s Day Story Time event. It will start at 11:00 and end at 11:30 a.m. Kids who become book club members will receive a book club passport at their first story time and a special gift for attending five story times.

Home Depot
February 7, 2015: Home Depot Kids Workshops will let kids build a heart box for Valentines’ Day. This event is for kids ages 5 – 12. Each child will receive a certificate of achievement, Workshop apron, commemorative pin, and will get to take home the wooden project they built. Parents must register their child if they want him or her to attend the event.

Lowe’s Build and Grow
February 14, 2015: Lowe’s Build and Grow will let kids build a wooden Sweetheart Picture Holder for Valentine’s Day. Kids will receive a free apron, goggles, patch, and be able to take home the project they built. Parents must register their child if they want him or her to attend the event.

Lakeshore Learning
Lakeshore Learning offers free kids art classes every Saturday starting at 11:00 in the morning and ending at 3:00 p.m. The events are for children ages 3 and up. No reservations are necessary.

February 7, 2015: From the Heart Coupons – Kids will decorate a sheet of construction paper and a library pocket. They will receive a sheet of coupons that they can fill in. The finished coupons go into the pocket. The entire thing can be presented to a family member.

February 14, 2015: Uncle Sam’s U.S. Mask – Kids will create a wearable mask that features the white beard and patriotic top hat of Uncle Sam.

February 21, 2015: Roar-A-Lot Lion Puppet – Kids will make a paper bag puppet that looks like a lion.

February 28, 2015: Hats Off Pencil Holder – Kids will make a red and white striped pencil holder that looks like the one worn by Dr. Seuss’ “The Cat in the Hat”.

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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 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 Click the tab at the top of the page that says “Printable Coupons”. You will find coupons from,, 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.

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, 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 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 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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