Make Your Cell Phone Pay … for Itself!

Looking for a new way to save dough on your groceries?
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Check out this story I wrote and produced for Fox 4 News in Kansas City.

And check out other money-saving ideas. Just click on Cost Cutters at the bottom of the page.

Have an idea to share or have your heard of a new cost cutting idea that you’d like us to check out? Shoot me an email!!


Conquering the Cubicle — Sneak Peek!

OK, so I didn’t get everything done that I hoped to this past week. But, I am making progress!
Here’s a sneak peek at one project that you’ll soon see hanging in my work space.
Here’s what you need to customize your own magnetic message board.
1 magnetic dry erase board (I paid $9.99 for this one at Target)
Spray paint
Painters Tape

I printed out a free chevron template that I found here.
Then I just cut it out and taped it to my dry erase board.
Now the hard part is done!
Just spray paint,
wait for the paint to dry, and remove your tape!
I can’t wait to show it all to you!

Conquering the Cubicle

I am suffering from writer’s block. It’s a problem because I write for a living. I mean I write, like, 9 hours a day! (So you can see the problem.)
I this this may be a HUGE part of the issue:
I mean how am I supposed to be creative when I sit at that for 9 hours a day. That cubicle is D3. And no, I don’t mean 3D. I mean D3 as in D-cubed. Depressing, dark and disgusting!

Well, it’s about to change! I can’t wait to show you the reveal next week!

Beauty Sleep {How We Saved an Extra $80 on Our Mattress}

I hate the creepy commercial that shows all the nasty mites and dead skin that is now hiding in my  “greater than 8” year-old mattress.  Ewwww!  Plus our king size mattress is so old that is it no longer comfy.  I will actually ache when I get up in the morning. 

After kicking around the idea and putting it off and then thinking about it again, I read where we could shop at Sam’s Club from May 2-4, 2014 without needing a membership.  (We had one, but it is now expired.)  So, off to Sam’s we drove.

Picking a mattress at Sam’s didn’t take any time at all (because, let’s face it, there is not much selection.)  We actually decided on the lower priced pillow top.  Turns out there is a 10-year warranty on the mattress … and we can return it at any time.  We thought about the mattress as we walked along the store’s back wall … and came upon another mattress.  It had the same number … but it ended in “C” instead of “A”.  The other difference?  This mattress came with a price tag of $449 instead of $529!  An employee said it’s basically the same bed … but last year’s model.  Yo!  I’m fine with that!

So we walked out of Sam’s without having to buy a membership, saved $80 on the mattress we needed … and can return it in the next 10 years if we hate it!

My Thumb is Getting a Little Greener

I’ve been feeling blah lately. Winter seemed to drag on FOREVER … and now that spring is here, I can’t seem to get out of my funk.

I finally made it to Home Depot the other day to browse the flower selection. But instead of finally picking up some color for the yard, I fell in love with several little succulents.

I brought them home and finally got around to planting them today. I found some great glass containers at Home Goods. Then I poured in some river rock …
then just added some potting soil.
It’s as easy as that!
What do you think of the little guys?
Meet “Hobbit”
“E.T.’s Fingers”
and “Pork and beans.”
I’ve never heard of succulents with these names. That intrigued me! I guess I choose my plants like I choose my wine … by the name on the label! 😉

Pantry Raid!!

2014-02-21 15.46.07 My pantry is OUT. OF. CONTROL! After trying to organize it I realized how much stuff I really needed to use. Then I looked in the freezer. Ugh! We have enough food to feed us for months. Seriously. I guess that’s the point of couponing and stockpiling.

The problem is that we get caught up with life and I don’t feel like coking when I get home from work. I hope the answer is freezer cooking a lot of our meals. You know, make them ahead and toss them in the freezer. I’m hoping to be able to have two big cooking days every month. Sure, I’ll have to buy some meat, produce, milk and bread along the way. But, hopefully I will have an answer to the “What’s for Dinner?” question. Here’s a list of what I’ll be making over the next few months. (Most of the things on this list can be frozen … but not everything.)

Looks like it’s time to get cookin’! (And no, we don’t usually eat like this … just ask anyone who works with us. We’re usually skipping meals because I can’t remember to pack a lunch!! I guess we’ll see if this plan works.)

Breakfast and Brunch
Eggs and Hashbrowns
Egg White Sandwiches
Breakfast Burritos
Bacon Hashbrown Wraps
Egg and Green Chili Casserole
Stuffed Breakfast Peppers
Muffin Tin Pancakes
Cinnamon Crescents
Orange Rolls
Banana Bread
Pumpkin Ribbon Bread
Lemon Pull Apart Bread
Monkey Bread
Jam Filled Biscuits
Apple Breakfast Sandwiches
Biscuits and Gravy
Corn Muffins
Quinoa and Eggs

Soups and Salads
Chef Salad
Tossed Salad
Taco Salad
Santa Fe Quinoa Salad
Broccoli Potato Soup
Potato Soup
Chicken Jalapeno Popper Chili
Chicken Enchilada Soup
Chicken Noodle Soup
Chicken Enchiladas
Chicken Pot Pie Soup

Main Dishes
Chicken Bake
Chicken Pot Pie
BBQ Chicken Legs
Jalapeno Chicken
BBQ Chicken
Cheesy Chicken and Rice
Buffalo Chicken
General Tso’s Chicken
Salsa Chicken
Bacon Wrapped Chicken
Crusted Chicken

Stuffed Shells
Beef Stew
Beef Enchiladas
Bubble-up Enchiladas
Meatballs and Rice
Chicken Fried Steak

Italian Flavored Pork Roast
Flavored Pork Loin
Cheesy Pork Loin
Apple BBQ Pork Loin (There are some other great freezer meals at this link too)
BBQ Pork Chops
Pulled Pork
BBQ Ribs

Turkey Tacos
Turkey Tacos
Spaghetti using ground turkey in the sauce
I will also be using ground turkey in some of my recipes that call for hamburger. It’s cheaper right now.

Fish Tacos

Bean Enchiladas
Homemade Pizza

Tossed Salad
Mexican Street Corn Salad
Spicy Slaw
Ramen Cole Slaw
Roasted Cabbage
Garlic Rubbed Cabbage
Pasta Salad
Frozen Veggies
Roasted Veggies
Grilled Veggies
Spiced Roasted Cauliflower
Stuffed Mushrooms
Cornbread Casserole
Southern Squash Casserole
Hash Brown Casserole
Mashed Potato Balls
Mac & Cheese
Spanish Rice
Southwest Rice and Beans
Baked Beans
Cool Beans Salad
Jalapeno Cheddar Bread
Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Peppers
Bacon-Wrapped Anaheim Peppers

Yogurt Covered Berries
Frosted Grapes
No Bake Bites
Nutella Energy Bites
Pumpkin Energy Bites
Cranberry Pistachio Bites

Homemade PB Cups
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bars
PB Snickers Brownies
Lemon Bars

Pillow Talk

I found our sofa and chair on Craigslist. I love them. There is no way I could have afforded them any other way. The couple selling them moved into a new house and didn’t have room for the fantastic pair. Their loss. Our HUGE gain.

There is only one problem with them. I HATE the pillows. I hate the trim. I hate that the trim doesn’t match anything else in our home.
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The problem is that the sofa and oversized chair are so deep that the pillows are a must.

At first I thought about ripping them apart and making new ones, but I couldn’t find a fabric that I liked. And I was being lazy. I didn’t want to deal with the mess. Then I ran across this great pin on Pinterest! Duh! Just make a case for the pillows. When I get tired of them, I’ll just make another cover.

Here’s what I came up with … what do you think? I’m still trying to come up with an idea for the other four pillows I have.
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And then I finally got around to cutting down a cover I picked up at Ikea on a recent trip.

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