The *Almost* Free Shopping Trip

I came pretty darn close to having a 100 percent free shopping trip yesterday. I guess if you count when I use a Publix gift card then I’ve had several in the past, but I don’t like to count those as being “free” since some form of payment is changing hands. I just don’t include those payments in my weekly allotment for grocery money.

I will preface this by saying, I rarely do a “full” shopping trip anymore. You know, the kind where you buy EVERYTHING — meats, starches, drinks, snack, etc. — at one time. We eat mainly vegetarian at home, and I’m stocked up on vegetarian meats since the last Morningstar sale. I have a TON of pasta, pasta sauce, soup and cereal. I haven’t really found a good way yet to stock up on rice, but that’s my next goal as I eat rice like it’s going out of style.

So, on my weekly trips, I tend to focus on buying items that are on sale and that I have coupons for, with a few extras usually thrown in as well. Yesterday, I needed to get some sodas, so we headed to Publix. I had four coupons for free 12-packs from My Coke Rewards, and I wanted to see if they had any of the tuna fish pouches and popcorn that are free with coupons this week as well.

I totally lucked out. They had enough of the tuna fish pouches and popcorn to get the 10 of each I’m allowed on each trip (our store puts limits on sale items as a way to stop people from clearing shelves). And, the Coke 12-packs were B2G1 so, with my four free product coupons, I got six 12-packs for free! I added three boxes of Bagel Bites to my cart, and we were ready. I was going to get a couple of cartons of Edy’s ice cream since they were BOGO and I had a $1/2 coupon, but I need to make sure we have enough room in one of our freezers first.

(10) Starkist tuna fish pouches — $1/each x10 = $0 (10 $0.50/1 that doubled)
(10) Jolly Time popcorn — $1/each x10 = $0 (10 $0.50/1 that doubled)
(6) Coke 12-packs — B2G1 $4.99/each = $0 (4 free product)
(3) Bagel Bites — $2.59 = $4.18 (1 free product WYB 2, 1 $1/1 Target coupon)

So, after tax, I paid around $5 for an $80 haul. The cashier who rang me up said, “Are you going to pay anything? So far, everything’s been free!” Sure, it would have been nice to have a completely free transaction, but I’m not complaining too much. Hopefully, I’ll be able to use my other tuna fish and popcorn coupons. If not, I’ll just get rainchecks. Then, we should be stocked up on those items for a while!

Win a Publix Gift Card!

Who’s up for a giveaway??

We are a busy family. Even though I work from home now, which I thought would mean more free time, I’m still pretty busy. So busy, in fact, that we still eat fast food take out a couple of times a week, usually on the nights when I have meetings to cover. It’s just easier than getting everything out to cook at 8 p.m.

Publix is trying to make our hectic lives a little bit easier with its “Best Meals Happen at Home” event, which is going on from Jan. 26-Feb. 1. Beginning on Jan. 26, you can look for in-store for coupons and take advantage of great savings on some of your favorite participating brands. And, you can go to to sign up and receive emails with weekly recipes and coupon offers that will help you save up to $200 this year.

Publix is giving one of my readers a $25 gift card! Use the widget to enter. Just an FYI, I do check entries, and if they have not been completed, they will not count, as I have had problems with that in the past. Good luck!

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A Piercing Question

Lucy and I were at one of her favorite play places on Sunday when a man asked me if she was a boy. No, she’s a girl. I mean, she was dressed completely in pink, which I thought would have been a dead giveaway.

“But she doesn’t have pierced ears!!!!!!!!!!” he exclaimed.

Because that, my friends, is apparently how you differenciate a boy toddler from a girl toddler.

Judgey Moms who Judge

My daughter is 2, and she isn’t potty training, still sleeps in her crib and doesn’t use a regular cup.

There. I said it. It feels like it’s taboo to admit things like that. I’ve been around some moms lately who have looked down on me because Lucy’s *gasp* 2 and not using the potty. We actually started the potty training process in December, and she was really into it. She wanted to sit on the potty all.the.time.

Then, for some reason, she suddenly became terrified of it, and now she doesn’t want anything to do with it. I don’t think forcing her to use it will make the whole being scared of it thing any better, so we’re waiting it out. To us, this means she wasn’t ready. So, we’ll wait until she is. I mean, she just turned 2 in November. And, it’s not like she’s going to go to Kindergarten wearing diapers.

The big girl bed and regular cup will come in their own time as well, too. She’s not ready for a regular cup. She’d spill it all over the place! Plus, she LOVES using straws. And, I plan to keep her in her crib as long as she doesn’t try to climb out. Why move her when she’s contained and can’t get up when she should be going to sleep?

My daughter is fine. She’s a happy, healthy, thriving toddler. When she’s ready to use the potty and move up to a big girl bed, she will. Until then, I will enjoy my sweet baby girl. And, I will tell all the judging moms to take their comments elsewhere. I’m not any less of a mother, and my girl isn’t any less of a 2-year-old. We’re right where we should be.

Has anyone tried seaweed cream? It apparently is some kind of body cream. I wonder if it’s kind of like lotion or body wash. When I think of cream, I think of something for my face. I also wonder what the benefits are for your skin. It might be something to try sometime for the fun of it. Who knows — it could become part of my daily routine.

Progresso Soup and The Biggest Loser Giveaway

My goal this year is to lose weight. I gained a good bit of weight when I was pregnant with Lucy, and I have yet to lose it. I’m pretty sure that at 2 years postpartum, it can no longer be called baby weight. 🙂

I want to really get back into exercising this year. I’ve been kind of limited because of my knees, but I’ve been using our stationary bike and it’s been going pretty well. I missed a week or so this month, but I’m hoping to do at least three days a week.

And, I need to watch my eating more. I’ve been getting back into eating baked potatoes and veggies for lunch, and I LOVE Progresso soup. These soups were awesome when I was on Weight Watchers because the vegetable soup that I buy was 0 points. With the new points system, I think it has a couple of points, but still not much at all. And, it is SO good. I buy the chicken noodle soup for Joe, and he loves it as well. There’s nothing better than some tasty soup with only 100 calories!

Progresso and MyBlogSpark have teamed up to give one of my readers the chance to try Progresso soup AND The Biggest Loser workout DVD. You can enter by using the widget below. Please be aware that I will be checking the Facebook and Twitter entries to verify. Good luck! And, for everyone, there is a coupon for $1.25 off the purchase of 4 Progresso soups. Click here to access it!

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