Ocean is quite the little flirt today. He was playing while I was getting Iris dressed and out of the clear blue sky he abruptly stopped his activity, sidled up to me and put his little hand on my shoulder. "Oh, Mommy!" he gushed, "You are sooooooo beautiful!" I returned the compliment (as I was grinning from ear to ear of course) by saying, "Thank you, Ocean. YOU are so beautiful." He responded, "No, I not a grill!" (interpretation: grill=girl.) I corrected myself and told him he was handsome. He seemed satisfied with that and went about his business.
Then this afternoon I met my sister at Old Navy and we were trying on some clothes. She was playing with the kids while I was in the fitting room. I came out with a dress on and Ocean ran to me gushing, "Mommy, you look GREAT!" I don't know how it actually looked on me or how much it cost, but I bought it. In fact, I bought ten.
Our vacation was awesome. Definitely the best one I've had in years. I managed to read an entire book, which I haven't done since 2001. Phil and I celebrated our 4th anniversary while we were there, and were able to go out to dinner while the kids ran my parents and sister ragged. (Thanks, guys!)
There is no place more relaxing for me than the beach. There was eating of popsicles while floating on rafts in our pool, body boarding to the delighted chorus of "Again, Mommy!", watching pods of dolphins playing in the surf daily (they were SO close to the shore!), laying out in the sun, eating sand (guess who?) and lots and lots of sleep. Phil tried his hand at photography (pretty good, eh?) and caught a few fish (the flounder really freaked him out). The kids thoroughly enjoyed themselves and Ocean is already asking to go back. I think that can be arranged.
I'd say this was what we all needed. Refreshing, peaceful and centering.
Home... aaaaaaah. Came home to a new washer (ours broke three days before we left), a freshly stained porch (thanks, Elysium Painting!) and a vegetable garden overflowing with goodies. Additionally, it appears as though the new Whole Foods has *finally* opened up by our house. (Can anyone confirm that??)
The kids are nestled all snug in their beds after a 14 hour drive. They were simply amazing in the car and I am so, so fortunate to have such wonderful kids. I will post more about our trip in the next couple of days but for now I must head off to wrap myself in slumber as well.
We are at the beach until next Saturday so I am actually *gasp* taking a break from CVS this week, even though there's one just down the road.
However, I threw together this quick scenario for anyone who still wants to roll their ECBs starting tomorrow, 9/14:
(1) Excedrin Express Gels (20ct.) @ 3.99
(1) Aleve Sinus & Headache @ 3.99
Any item(s) totaling $3
Your CVS card =)
Your $2/$10 CVS coupon
This coupon for the Aleve
Pay with your 5.99 ECB from the Loreal deal last week, pay 1.99 (+ tax) out of pocket, earn back 6.99 ECBs.
You're more or less breaking even but you'll have more ECBs to roll next week (which looks to be more promising, anyway.)
Here's what I got at CVS this morning for a little over $3 out of pocket:
- 3 Newspapers (it's a good coupon week)
- 4 deodorants
- 1 face cleanser
- 1 infant Tylenol drops
- 3 nail polishes
- 1 protein bar
- 3 packs of chocolate covered peanuts
All I really needed were the newspapers and baby Tylenol; I had to work everything else into my transaction in order to get it for (almost) free.
If I'm stuffing your stocking this year, you will be getting nail polish and chocolate covered peanuts.
The kids and I walked down to see the marching band before the game today, which was a lot of fun. Ocean was a little nervous about the loud music but the cute cheerleaders with their sparkly pom-poms made it all better. (This kid knows how to attract cheerleaders.) On our walk back home, the beer girl at the Miller Light tent handed me this lovely little bauble and said, "Here's something for your kids!"
Here's your CVS mission for next week, should you choose to accept it. But you MUST shop on Sunday or Monday for this particular deal!
Print another copy of the $2/$10 coupon I talked about last week.
Print this coupon for Loreal Skin Genesis.
Print this coupon for Chex Mix.
You will purchase:
(1) Loreal Skin Genesis @ 5.99
(1) Revlon Nail Enamel @ 3.99
(1) Chex Mix 4.5-6 oz. @ 1.00
(1) Right Guard Sport, Soft & Dri or Dry Idea deodorant @ 2.99
(NOTE: If this is your first week, do NOT buy the deodorant.)
Give your coupons in this order:
-CVS card to be scanned!
-Your 7.99 ECBs that you earned last week.
You will pay .98 + tax, and you will earn back 10.99 in ECBs. Congratulations, CVS just paid you to shop.
If this is your first week, you will pay 5.98 out of pocket, but will earn 8.99 back in ECBs. They print at the bottom of your receipt.
A couple of people have said that they don't use these products so it's not worth it to make a trip to CVS. I respect that... however, they make great donation items to shelters or Single Moms Ministries. And also consider that you will start earning $5 off $25 purchase coupons immediately. Those are the best... I get free diapers/pacifiers/baby necessities, Burt's Bees products and household necessities (like toothpaste, toothbrushes, trash bags and dish soap) on a weekly basis thanks to those coupons. CVS also carries groceries, including dairy products (not much in the way of organic though, so no go for us) but this is a great way to get free groceries for your family as well. If anyone gets a $5/$25 or $4/$20 coupon, let me know and I'll help you work out a scenario to get free stuff (or at least really cheap stuff) that you actually need.
Also, if anyone is actually doing this, please leave me a comment so I know to keep posting scenarios. Otherwise I'm taking up precious blog space that could be better utilized telling you how Ocean calls helicopters "opticotters" or that Iris is finally cutting her first teeth. =)
Okay, so if you bought Sunday's paper and are wondering what to do with some more of those coupons, here are a couple of ideas:
-Select Covergirl lipsticks are on sale at CVS, Buy-one-get-one-free (BOGO). There was a coupon in Sunday's paper for BOGO Covergirl lip product. At CVS, a BOGO coupon and a BOGO sale will get you two free items. Basically the store pays for one item and the coupon pays for the other. So you get two free lipsticks and just pay tax. Pretty cool, eh?
-While you're in CVS, look for a little price-checker kiosk. When you scan your CVS card it spits out coupons. This week there are some GOOD ones! If you get a coupon for $2 off 2 Gold Emblem Nuts (I have been getting them every time I'm in there), there are .99 packs of cashews by the cash registers, and also some chocolate caramel peanuts in the candy section. So they will be free with the coupon. If you have questions about how to best use your specific CVS coupons leave a comment and I'll try to help.
-There is also a coupon in the paper for $1.00/2 Bounty products. This week at Kroger, Bounty Basic paper towel single rolls are $1. This makes them .50 each with your Kroger Plus Card and the coupon. I rarely use paper towels but I like to have a roll or two on hand for those highly disgusting, gag-inducing kid spills that you don't want to revisit later when you're laundering your cleaning rags.
-There's a new "loadable coupon" feature on the Kroger website. Just fill out some basic info including your Kroger card number and download coupons which will automatically be deducted when you purchase those items using your card in-store. The best part is, they can be used in conjunction with manufacturer's coupons. So for example, this week Tide Total Care is on sale for $5.99. There was a $1/1 coupon in Sunday's paper, and there is also a $1 loadable coupon on the Kroger site, making the detergent just $3.99 (a great price for Tide!).
-Here is a printable coupon for .50 off French's mustard. (Click on the "Save Now" button, and register with that alternate email address I talked about earlier.) French's is on sale for 1.00 at Kroger again this week, and .50 coupons automatically double, making the mustard free.
-Assorted varieties of Aunt Millie's bread are on sale at Meijer this week, buy-one-get-2-free. This makes it 1.00 each. We eat a lot of Aunt Millie's (no high fructose corn syrup) and it freezes really well so at 1.00 a loaf I like to stock up.
-Also at Meijer, Huggies wipes (64 ct.) are 2.00 each. While they weren't in last week's paper, there are some .50 coupons floating around out there. If you happen to have a few, now is the time to use them since they double, making each tub just a dollar. Keep in mind that a lot of Meijer stores only double two like coupons per transaction, the rest will go through at face value.
This week is not super-awesome in terms of deals, at least in my area, but I wanted to give you some ideas if you're itching to get started saving some money.