Get A Quote, Save Money & You Could Win A $5,000 Vacation Rental! #GreatCanadianGetaway

This post is sponsored by State Farm Insurance, all opinions are my own.

You all know me, I like to get the best deal possible! So, when it comes to service providers, I call for a quote or discount each year.

Did you know you should do this with your insurance as well? You are quoted a yearly rate, likely in monthly (more…)

How To Save More Money On Your Groceries Every Week

This post is sponsored by YP Grocery. All opinions and wording are my own.

When I am planning a shop and trying to save the most money, I want to be well organized. In the past I have made my paper shopping list, scanned the flyers for the best prices and then checked if I have coupons to use with the items I want to purchase. Now there is an app to help make all these steps easier and in one place. (more…)

Restaurants Where Kids Eat Free & Other Specials

Restaurants Where Kids Eat Free & Other Specials

Here are some Canadian Restaurants that offer Kids Eat Free or special offers for kid's though out the week. If you know of other restaurants in your area that offer Kid's Eat Free, please comment below to let us know. We will be starting a "Local" section for non chain restaurants that will be sorted by town/city.  (more…)

Frugal Friday: Roasted Cauliflower Recipe

FRUGAL FRIDAY: 

Here is a recipe for this week's deal on cauliflower!
We picked up 4 heads of cauliflower last night for $1.50 each. Here is one recipe I have made so far. We love cauliflower and this is just one way to prep it.
----------------
Roasted Cauliflower

(more…)

5 Reasons To Keep Your Receipts

5 Reasons To Keep Your Receipts

Yes, I am telling you to hang onto those little crumpled up pieces of paper in your coat pocket, car cup holder or bottom of your purse! 

It may seem annoying to keep track of all these little pieces of paper, but read on to understand why it may be a good idea. 

Here are 5 reasons to keep your receipts for all purchases:

(more…)

How To Save On Baby Expenses

How To Save On Baby Expenses 

Tips on How to Save on Baby Expenses

This is the outline for the interview that aired on CBC Information Morning 106.1 fm Moncton in February, 2013, just 6 weeks after I had our second child.  What better to discuss than what was personally living at the moment, the impact of a baby on your budget! 

These are my tips on how to save and budget for your new addition.

Having a new baby in the house is a wonderful happy experience, but may take a toll on the pocket book.  New babies require Food, Diapers, Clothing and more...it can really bust your monthly budget if you are not careful.

1. When it comes to a new baby, what are some of the ways you can save to keep within your budget?


There are a few strategies I used when planning our new baby’s arrival.
If baby is not here yet, start allotting a portion of your monthly budget to stocking up on items you will need. I used $20-25 of my budget for about 4 months before my baby arrived. This allowed me to stock up on Diapers, Wipes and some toiletries.
Items such as clothing, blankets and toys were left until closer to baby’s arrival, as we received many as gifts.

Using coupons, sales, clearance, second hand, baby clubs and points programs, you can save a great deal!

2. Can you share some tips for how to save on specific items?

Disposable Diapers:  The best way to save on Disposable Diapers is to use a coupon with a sale, and watch the clearance bins. I have been abe to purchase many packages for $0.10 per diaper. They have been brands such as Seventh Generation, Pampers and Huggies. You can often get them much cheaper than the store brand when shopping with coupons.

Calculate how many diapers you will use at each stage of development( CLICK HERE) with these guidelines. 

Cloth diapers are another option, with a high upfront cost, but much lower once you have them. When considering the cost of Cloth Diapers, work in laundry detergent, energy costs and water fees if you live in areas that cost you extra. If you have a clothes line and are on a well, you will not need to worry about those costs. 

Purchasing your cloth diapers second hand is a great way to save on the up front costs as well. If you know you are going to cloth diaper, then research the brands and find the best deals possible either from the company or through distributors.
CLICK HERE for a Calculator to help you figure out what works for you.

Breast Feeding is the cheapest, it`s free! If you can do it, this is the best money saver to start out. Not everyone can breast feed, but you also should understand that often the first month is the hardest and it DOES get easier as you and your baby figure it out together. If you are having a hard time with breast feeding, do not give up, please seek out help and refer to the links provided below for resources in your area.
You may want to invest in a pump ($100 - $200+) if you are looking to bottle feed some. This will also allow you to freeze and store milk for future use as well. I breast fed both my children and this was convenient and cost effective for us. 

Formula:There are several companies who have clubs you can join to receive samples and coupons.  The coupons and vouchers you can get are high value and worth signing up for. These companies usually make follow up formulas and food for babies. They continue to send coupons to you for the various stages of baby growth. Refer to the links at the bottom of this page for details.

Watch for Formula and Diapers in the Clearance bins. Formula is put on clearance for 50% off usually a good month or 2 before the expiry date. If purchasing formula on clearance, buy the concentrate or ready made, you will likely not get through the powdered kind in time.

Clothing: Babies grow out of clothes long before they wear out. Consider buying second hand...and sell the ones that you no longer need to make room for new ones. Another great idea is to start a clothing exchange with some friends who have children at varying stages. 

**Tip: Treat stains immediately and you will be able to keep clothing in better condition for swapping, selling or trading in at consignment stores.

Larger items & toys: Second hand all the way for these items. You can shop online on kijiji, ebay or other buying groups, or check out the local thrift shops and yard sales. The younger the child is, the better your chances of finding something in great shape for a fabulous price.

**Please consider safety with purchasing older items second hand. There are expiry dates on some items such as Car Seats, and safety standards on others that have changed over the years. Do your research before buying.

3. These are all great tips, but is it possible to continue to maintain a budget close to what you had before once the baby is here?

Absolutely. I worked the baby essentials into my budget prior to his arrival and continue to have baby items in my “stock up” budget. 

I have a set budget for groceries of $100, then an additional amount up to $25 for stocking up on items we use regularly. So my food is in the $100, where my baby, toiletries, cleaning supplies, etc are in my $25 stock up budget. This is my bi-weekly budget for my family of 3 and now with baby, family of 4. This will no doubt change as he gets older and eating more.  

Everyone’s budget will be different, but this proves it does not need to change right away.

The things that will help you keep on budget are simple:·     

  • Coupons- often High Value for baby items
  • Cash Back apps- watch apps and use for additional savings
  • Clearance Bins - in store up to 50%
  • Second Hand -many items 50-80% off
  • Baby Clubs – Free sign up and send samples & coupons
  • Rewards points (Optimum points, Airmiles, etc) I did not discuss this in the above sections, but many times you can get any of the items you are looking for free when redeeming point. Also, watch for bonus points being offered on baby items. If you are buying the item anyway, you should take advantage of any bonus offers!

Breast Feeding resources:

Formula Companies Offers:


SOBEYS Pharmacy: offers Free Prenatal Vitamins the entire time you are pregnant and nursing (ask for a form to join up) there are also samples and coupons in a bag when you sign up.

JEAN COUTU: Ask to join their New Mommy club and get a bag of samples and coupons.

Mam club: newsletters, offers and freebies from time to time.



Looking for ways to save when you have kids?

Here are some money saving tips when you have children: Click here

 2013 The MonctonCoupon Lady/ Everything Unscripted 

Family, Food, Frugal Living & Fun!

A Frugal and Thoughtful Valentine’s Day

A Frugal and Thoughtful Valentine's Day In our busy lives we need to take advantage of time together and stop replacing quality time with giving each other "stuff". Yes, jewellery, flowers and chocolates are all beautiful and appreciated, but planning something to do together is more meaningful and can be more unique. Start by putting the phones away, out of sight, for the evening. (Or even an hour) Another tip is to plan the evening start to finish, on your own. Just let your partner know you have it all planned and you will let them know what you are doing on that day. This is huge, especially if they usually plan the "date nights". Here are a few ideas:
FOOD
  1. Eat in and go out for dessert or coffee.
  2. Cook together. Pick your favourite meals.
  3. If you have young kids, plan a special snack (cheese board or fondu) and/or drink for after they go to bed. Enjoy it while you take time to relax.
ACTIVITIES
  1. Play a board game that you can play and talk.
  2. If you are BOTH into video games, play together.
  3. Go skating at an outdoor rink.
  4. Go sledding.
  5. If you are a book lover. Go to the bookstore together. 
  6. Go for an evening walk
  7. Meet for coffee at lunch time or in the evening.
There are so many things you can do that cost very little money. The key is to do something together and enjoy your times together. Gifts are nice, but don't mean as much as time spent with each other

Our Weekly Meal Plan -Feb 5 thru 11

Planning:

  • Go through flyers for best prices. Also check online for specials at local butchers, farmer's markets, bakeries and shops.
  • Check freezer, fridge, pantry and make as many meals as possible with these items and items on sale this week.
  • Make menu and shopping list.

Menu:

I usually use this format to plan. Not assigning a day to the meal, but rather having everything prepped to make whichever I feel like doing that day. Here is my plan for this week. Recipes will be added as well, as I get them photographed and posted.
Supper Time Planned Meals: February 5 to February 11
  • Salmon and Hassleback Potatoes
  • Salsa Chicken with Roasted Veggies
  • Spaghetti and Meatballs
  • Hamburgers & Veggie Sticks
  • Pizza & Garlic Fingers (Sunday,  Super Bowl)
  • Homemade Chinese Food
Lunch Time:
Our lunches (hubby & I) are usually salad or wrap with some kind of protein (Chicken, Tuna, Egg, etc), or leftovers from supper. School lunches are usually NOT sandwiches, as my oldest does not like them. So I get creative with what we have on hand. Meat chunks, grape tomatoes, cheese cubes, cut up veggies, etc...
Breakfast Time:
We have options ready and available.
  • Breakfast Burritos (In freezer, wI'll be making more next week)
  • Banana Muffins (in freezer)
  • Boiled Eggs
  • Toast
  • Overnight Oatmeal
  • yogurt, fruit, cereal always an option

Snacks:

  • apples (with peanut butter)
  • Sliced peppers, celery & carrots
  • almonds
  • dates
  • cereal bars /  granola bars (kids)
  • crackers & cheese
  • yogurt
  • boiled eggs

Shopping:

This week I didn't purchase much. Most of our meals were planned around what I had on hand in the freezer and pantry. We did buy store made thin crust pizza and garlic fingers for Super Bowl Sunday. Other than that, we had everything on hand for all the meals this week. I still bought milk and some bread at the bakery. Also Eggs at Shoppers.
  • Eggs $1.88 x2 dozen
  • 4 L Milk $3.41/2L
  • Sugar free Bread $2.70 x2
  • Carrots $1.49
  • Tortilla Chips $1.99 x2
  • Coffee Cream $2.99
  • Store made pizza $5.99
  • Store made Garlic Fingers  $3.99
  • TOTAL was just under $36

Items On Hand:

  • Salmon
  • Hamburgers
  • Chinese food (rice, meatballs, Egg  rolls & chicken)
  • Oats
  • Coconut milk
  • yogurt
  • clementines
  • apples
  • crackers
  • cheese
  • almonds
  • dates
  • Pasta cooked in freezer
  • Meatballs
  • Pasta sauce in freezer

Meal Prep

Here is the list of what I did for prep on Sunday.
  • Boil 6 eggs, cool & store in fridge.
  • Baked bread and rolls
  • Make up 4 jars of Overnight Oatmeal.
  • Cut up celery and carrots into snack bags

What To Buy In February – Seasonal Deals

What To Buy In February - Seasonal Deals

February is the shortest month of the year. Although it can be cold and snowy, the celebration of Valentine’s Day mid month perks us up and the promise of spring only a couple months away keeps our spirits up. So what else can we do to keep the winter blues at bay? How about finding some amazing deals?? Here are 7 things to buy in February.
  1. Vacation Packages: both ski resorts and beach resorts tend to offer some great deals in February. It is a slower month for travel, so you may just snag a great deal!
  2. Mattresses are often on sale for great price in February.
  3. TV's: Keep your eyes open for some amazing deals on High Definition TVs.
  4. Tax Software: Watch for online versions with discount codes.
  5. Video Games tend to be released in Fall and early Winter. Once the holidays are over, you should see a drop in price for all the newer releases.
  6. Skis, Skates and Snowboards are another item that sells well before Christmas and will be on clearance in the month of February as the store start to transition to Spring and Summer products.
  7. FOOD: Chocolate 🙂 after valentine's day sales. Snacks: Superbowl weekend means snacks are usually on for some great prices. Produce: Bananas, Grapefruit, Kiwi, Lemons, Oranges, Tangerines, Beets, Cabbage, Carrots, Cucumber, Lettuce, Mushrooms, Onions, Potatoes, Squash, Sweet Potatoes
 

You Really Can Eat Healthy On A Small Budget

You Really Can Eat Healthy On A Small Budget

People ask me all the time if I actually save money on good healthy food. This post will hopefully prove that it is possible.

Looking back over shopping trips from the past year or so, I wanted to share some amazing deals that I was able to get using coupons, cash back or other savings strategies.

TIPS TO SAVE ON FOOD:

  • Plan ahead! Meal planning, stocking up on sales and knowing how much your family eats will all help you save. Many of us over buy then end up wasting food. Plan, plan, plan.
  • Meat: Shop early in the day and look for those packs of meat close to Best Before dates. Most stores will mark them down 50% to sell fast.
  • Meat From Butcher: If you have a local butcher or market, there are often deals when you buy in bulk, or in freezer packs.
  • Meat from the Farm: If you purchase meat directly from a farmer, you can often get a good deal on 1/4 cow, or 1/2 pig, etc...this will be a large purchase, but will last a long time. Supporting local and getting meat as fresh as possible are added bonuses!
  • Fruit & Veggies: Again, clearance racks are great at supermarkets. Often a small bruise or one tomato in a container could be bad. Cut off the bruises on fruit and chop up and freeze for smoothies or pies. Veggies are perfect to chop and make soups, sauces or chilies.
  • Yogurt: Keep watching for those mark downs or sales and coupons for Yogurt especially. Freeze yogurt in ice cube trays, then use in smoothies.
  • Milk: You can also freeze milk, simply thaw and shake well before drinking. Watch for bonus points offers at Shoppers or Superstore. You can also find coupons for soy and almond milks often

Below are just a few examples of savings on regular grocery trips. Using Cash back apps, digital offers (PC points) and coupons can help you save even more on your regular grocery bill.

$1 for 6 loaves of bread and 3 Oasis 1.75l Juice

By purchasing the bread on the discount rack, and using a high value coupon for Bread and Juice combo, I was able to get all this for only $1.02.

DETAILS HERE

1dollar6bread3juice

Clearance and pink stickers galore!

All the items below were purchased for $61.40 

  • Whole Chicken
  • Lean Ground Chicken 
  • Lemon Chicken
  • Lemon Chicken
  • 3 Pepper Beef Strips
  • Kale
  • Tomatoes
  • 4 pk  Peppers
  • Broccoli
  • 5 packs Mini Go Drinks ($2 each)
  • 3 blocks Black Diamond Cheese
  • 2 small Salads
  • 1 Medium Salad

Get all the details HERE.

6140a  

6140c  

6140e

6140d6140f  6140b

Looking Back to 2012, here's a great shop!

223959_491411170870399_1307258115_n

This is an oldie, but we had great booklets for $ off meat in the Ziploc bags that year.

  • Turnip $0.95 - $0.75 = $0.20
  • Snow Peas $1.65 - $0.75 = $0.90
  • Gr Beans $1.56 - $0.75 = $0.81
  • Onions BOGO Free $2.89 - $1.50 = $0.70 each (X2)
  • Cabbage $1.57 - $0.75 = $0.82
  • Chicken $2.26 - $1.50 = $0.76
  • Chicken $2.28 - $1.50 = $0.78
  • Chicken $2.24 - $1.50 = $0.74
  • ML Prime Chicken $7.71 - $2 = $5.71
  • ML Prime Chicken $7.60 - $2 = $5.60
  • GF Bread Mix $4.99 - $1 = $3.99
  • Bathroom Cleaner $5.49 - FPC = FREE

This is from January 2017.

  • 2 X Minigo 2/$5
  • Plain Greek Yogurt $2.15
  • Coconut Milk $2.99
  • Almond Milk $2.99
  • Fruit Tray, melon & berries $5.99 - 50% = $3 (I am the only one who eats melon, so rarely buy it, this is my treat)
  • Taco Salad $7.50 -50% =$3.75
  • Rolls 6pk $3.49 - 50%= $1.75
  • 1lb Strawberries $4.99
  • English Cucumber $1.49
  • 4 pk Red Peppers $3.99
  • Tomato Variety pack $6.99 - 50% = $3.50
  • 4lb Gala Apples $4.99
  • 4X Nectarines $3.03
  • Lean Ground Beef $11.99 - 50% = $6
  • Lean Ground Beef $12.21 - 50% = $6.10
  • Pork Chops $4.91
  • Pork Chops $4.91
  • Chicken Breasts Value pack $13.52 - $0.75 Coupgon= $12.77 (8 pack,not pictured as I put them in the oven and slow cooker when I got home)

TOTAL: $78.31

I hope you find these tips helpful. Feel free to share any tips you have for saving on food.

More Grocery Savings Articles: