The $20 Weekly Grocery Budget

July 14, 2015 | Crystal Paine

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The $20 Weekly Grocery Budget

Frugal Farm Wife shows you how to feed your family a healthy menu for just $20 per person per week. She shares a complete menu plan and shopping list — so inspiring!

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5 Simple Tips for Saving Big on Back to School Expenses

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Save BIG on back to school expenses with these simple tips!!

School is starting really soon (or has already started!) and that means there are probably a number of different things you need to purchase — from school supplies to clothes for your kids for fall and winter to electronics and more.

Here are five simple tips to help you save big on those back to school expenses…

5 Ways to Save Big on Back to School Expenses

1. Create a Budget.

You knew I was going to say this first, didn’t you? But it’s imperative to start by knowing how much you have to spend.

Without a budget, you won’t have parameters for what you have to work with and there’s a good chance money will just slip through your fingers like sand.

I always recommend that you consider using a cash budget. Why? Because this gives you instant self-discipline: when the money’s gone, the money’s gone!

If you don’t really have any money to work with at all, is there something you could sell to drum up some extra cash? Could you cash in some of your points on Swagbucks for gift cards you could use toward school supplies? Could you sell last year’s wardrobe that your child outgrew to fund this year’s wardrobe?

Also, consider having a swap meet with your friends to swap school supplies and clothes. Bring what you don’t need/no longer use and swap it with others.

5 Ways to Save Big on Back to School Expenses

2. Identify Needs vs. Wants.

Once you’ve determined your budget, then you need to take a hard look at what you can realistically afford in that budget. If money is especially tight, focus on the most important items first.

If your child desperately needs new shoes because the only ones they have are two sizes too small, that’s a high priority. Start with what is a true need versus just a “would be nice to have” first.

This is a great conversation to have with your children to help them understand what a need is and what a want is. It’s not wrong to spend money on wants, but help your child learn how to prioritize needs first. This is a valuable lesson for them to understand and grasp at an early age and will benefit them all their life.

5 Ways to Save Big on Back to School Expenses

3. Compare Prices

Use an app like Flipp (it’s free to download!) to price compare all of the best deals at local stores in your area. Then, either hit the store with the most deals or, stop at Walmart and price-match all the best deals at your local stores.

To do this, just check the ads, make a list of local prices, take these to Walmart, and tell your cashier what local prices you’re price-matching on the items you’re purchasing. Walmart’s corporate coupon policy says you don’t need an ad in order to price-match, however, I usually bring the ads with me in case there’s any issue or confusion about what the price is. Flipp makes it really easy to price-match at Walmart because you can have all of the ads right at your fingertips!

5 Ways to Save Big on Back to School Expenses

4. Buy Used.

Thrift stores, yard sales, consignment sales, and online sites such as ThredUp can be a treasure trove of bargains on back to school clothes for kids. You have to dig, but if you are patient, you can find incredible deals.

One of my favorite ways to find good deals at thrift stores is to go on the dollar days. Not all thrift stores have them, but it’s definitely worth checking into to see if your local thrift stores offer fill a bag for $5 or $1 days. Also, sign up for your thrift store’s email list to be notified of when they are having special offers and sales.

We’ve gotten amazing deals at consignment sales over the years, too. If you have extra time and energy, you can volunteer or sell at a consignment sale and you’ll usually be able to get first dibs on the deals — and possibly better pricing, too.

I’d highly recommend reading this article on how to stockpile clothes by shopping at yard sales. If you want to be even more strategic, check out this article on How to Shop Yard Sales for Free.

For more suggestions on how to maximize your consignment sale shopping experience, check out this article on Saving and Making Money With Consignment Sales and this article on How Selling on Consignment Works For Me.

5 Ways to Save Big on Back to School Expenses

5. Buy Extras.

When looking at the back-to-school sales, don’t just buy what’s on the required list from your local school. Buy extras of things such as glue, crayons, paper, notebooks, markers and other items you use on a regular basis around your home.

These sales are a great opportunity to stock up on office and craft supplies we use on a regular basis—all at the cheapest prices you’ll be able to get all year.

In addition, because many teachers have to pay for some of their classroom supplies out of pocket, how about buying extras of the great deals and donating them to your children’s’ classroom or purchasing them for a local family who is struggling financially?

How do YOU save on back to school supplies?

mail.google.com

This post is underwritten by Flipp — an app that brings all of the weekly sales fliers from your local stores to the digital age in a dynamic and personalized way, and aggregates all your favorite circulars onto one digital device for access anywhere, anytime.

With Flipp, busy parents have seamless access to their favorite weekly ad fliers from their favorite retailers  – and all the savings of each weekly circular right in their fingertips – without lugging around paper or cutting coupons! mail.google.com

What sets Flipp apart from other circular apps is that users can search by retailer (local groceries, larger big-box stores), or search for specific items (backpacks, notebooks, clothes, cereal), or even search for a specific savings amount, and they can create shopping lists to start the shopping experience beforehand or in the store right on their digital device.

With Flipp’s new shopping list feature, shoppers can quickly find the best deals for their weekly essentials. Once they’re in the store, users can easily check off items from their list – built right into the app! – to ensure they pick up everything they need (and also stick to their list!).

Download Flipp on iTunes or Google Play.

Source: moneysavingmom.com

Get The Better Budget Guide & Workbook for just $14.99!

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.

Is creating and sticking to a budget one of your financial goals for 2018?

If so, you can currently get The Better Budget Guide & Workbook for just $14.99!

This is a brand new budgeting guide written by Mara Strom — who went from stressing about money and overspending each month, to eliminating over $35,000 worth of debt and saving $20,000 for an emergency fund.

Inside this guide, you’ll learn:

  • Simple strategies for creating a budget you can actually stick to
  • Step-by-step instructions customized to your specific needs
  • Easy-to-follow assignments that put theory into practice
  • Lessons on tracking your expenses, learning to say no (so you can say yes later), saving for the future, and figuring out how to prioritize it all
  • Exercises to avoid budget meltdowns, improve communication, and clarify your goals

You’ll also receive a workbook with assignments to help you work through the guide at your own pace. When you’re done going through the workbook, you’ll have a budget that actually works and you can stick to!

Want to preview the guide before purchasing? Go here to download a FREE sample chapter of The Better Budget Guide!

Note: If you just want the guide and don’t think you need the workbook, there is also an option to just purchase The Better Budget Guide for $9.99!

Psst! Not sure if you’re ready to commit to the full budget guide yet? Check out the FREE Jumpstart Your Budget Challenge!

Source: moneysavingmom.com

I only spent $67.08 on groceries this week!!

I’m currently challenging myself to stick with a $70 grocery budget for our family of five. This includes almost all of our breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners + most household products (toiletries, laundry soap, etc.). 

You can see all of my $70 Grocery Budget Update posts here. For live updates, be sure to follow my Instagram Stories.

Note: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links and we will be compensated if you click through and sign up. Read our disclosure policy here.

I only had $5.66 left in my $70 grocery budget to spend on Friday, so I had to be careful and use it sparingly. I only needed to pick up two items — distilled water for my sinus rinse (this has been the BEST thing ever — I no longer have to be on allergy meds or sinus meds because of using this daily and changing my diet!) and lemon water for my gallon of lemon water a day habit. 🙂

(I should have realized that I was almost out of both of these things earlier in the week, but I totally didn’t. That’s just life sometimes, isn’t it?!)

So, while I was at Kroger, I picked up my FREE Friday item — the picture shows the Doritos Blaze, but it’s actually good on ANY Doritos. I didn’t realize this until I got home and was talking about it on Facebook Live.

I also wanted to pick up some Kroger bandages. They are on sale for $1 per box right now AND there is a $1/2 digital coupon. Since I only had $5.66 left in my grocery budget, I just picked up two boxes since I thought they would be $0.50 each.

Well, when I went to check out, they rang up as $1 per box, but then the e-coupon took $4 off — making each box FREE! I couldn’t figure out why my total was so low until I looked carefully at my receipt.

Kroger Shopping Trip — spent $2.74

  • Doritos — Free with Free Friday Download digital coupon
  • Lemon Juice — $1.69
  • Distilled Water — $0.89
  • 4 boxes of bandages — on sale for $1 each, used $1/2 digital coupon (limit of 5 uses per card per transaction) — the coupon took off $4 (I’m not sure why!) making these FREE!
  • Total with tax: $2.74

See more details on the deals I got in the video above.

All totaled, I spent $2.74 at the store — bringing my final grocery spending total for this week to just $67.08, a few dollars under my $70 budget! YAY!

By the way, if these posts on my grocery budget have been making you frustrated or you’re feeling like, “I just can’t do what she’s doing!”, I want you to read this post I wrote.

Source: moneysavingmom.com

7 Secrets for Saving Money at Hobby Lobby

August 5, 2015 | Crystal Paine

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hobbylobby

Want to learn how to get the best bang for your buck at Hobby Lobby? Head on over to Passionate Penny Pincher to read her post on 7 Secrets for Saving at Hobby Lobby.

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5 Healthy Crockpot Freezer Meals

August 4, 2015 | Crystal Paine

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5-Healthy-Crockpot-Freezer-Meals-Made-With-Fresh-Tomatoes-in-75-min

Kelly from New Leaf Wellness shows you how to make 5 Healthy Crockpot Freezer Meals.

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7 Items You Should Always Look for at Goodwill

August 27, 2015 | Crystal Paine

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Whether you’re a new or experienced thrift store shopper, you’ll love this post from Laurie at Passionate Penny Pincher on 7 items you should always look for at Goodwill before shopping retail stores.

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20 Slow Cooker Meals from ALDI for just $150!

October 9, 2015 | Meg

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20 Slow Cooker Dump Meals from Aldi

I Am That Lady is back with another ALDI Freezer Cooking Plan! In this newest plan, she shows you how to make 20 Slow Cooker “Comfort Food” Meals for just $150!

You can see all of the basic details on her blog for the plan or you can purchase the full details (instructions, shopping list, etc.) for a few dollars.

Subscribe for free email updates from Money Saving Mom® and get my Guide to Freezer Cooking for free!

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It’s your last chance to try Stitch Fix for FREE!

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.

Have you been wanting to try Stitch Fix, but you didn’t want to pay the $20 styling fee out of pocket?

Through tomorrow evening (January 31, 2018), Stitch Fix is waiving the styling fee for all new customers when you sign up through this link! I’ve never seen them offer this kind of deal!

Here’s how it works:

1. Sign up for a new Stitch Fix account.

2. Fill out your style profile. You’ll give very specific details on sizes you wear, styles you like, colors you like, types of clothes you like, and what types of clothing you are specifically looking for (more casual, all business, a mix of both, etc.) You can be very detailed in your descriptions and even share a Pinterest board with them to give Stitch Fix some ideas of your tastes in clothing. Also, I recommend leaving your stylist a note with specifics on your budget preferences and any other preferences you have (colors/what you’d really like for them to send/an occasion you’d like to be styled for, etc.)

3. Go to checkout and pay nothing out of pocket (you will need to add a method of payment but you won’t be charged).

4. One of the Stitch Fix stylists will take your style profile, sizes, and preferences and put together a box of clothing based upon what they think you’ll like and what they think will work well for you.

5. They’ll send you this box in the mail. You’ll have a few days to go through the box, try on the clothes, and then choose to keep any that you liked and ship back any that didn’t work (they provide a postage-paid envelope for you to use).

That’s it! If you decide to keep something, you’ll pay for what you keep. If you decide not to keep anything, you can just stick everything back into the postage-paid envelope and pop it in your mailbox and you’ll pay nothing out of pocket!

This outfit came in my latest box and I absolutely love it! (I took this late at night at our hotel last night. Jesse and I are on a quick getaway/business trip to NYC! I’ll share more details on what we were up to later this week!)

Go here to sign up for your first Fix for FREE! Remember, this deal ends on January 31, 2018!

P.S. This is your last chance to get in on this offer to try out Stitch Fix with no strings attached! You won’t be signed up for a subscription or anything. If you’ve always wanted to try it out, now’s your chance!

Source: moneysavingmom.com

How to Make Homemade Healthy Gatorade

August 10, 2015 | Crystal Paine

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