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Category: Money-Saving Ideas

Would I Save Money to Shop at Costco?

I found out recently — thanks to our friends Ryan and Melissa — that our kids LOVE seaweed (go figure!). We were having a picnic together and their family had brought tuna salad with seaweed. They offered some to our kids and they tried it and fell in love.

And then they promptly begged us to buy some. Jesse looked at Whole Foods to buy it and it was some ridiculous price per package. So Melissa offered to pick some up for us at Costco.

You guys! This entire HUGE package of 10 packages of organic seaweed (each package has 5 servings) was $8.99!!!!

Help Me Out! I Want Your Honest Opinion!

I’ve always said that a Costco membership just wasn’t worth it for our family because I could beat almost all of the prices by shopping markdowns, coupons, and deals.

But I’m wondering if now that my kids are older and we eat somewhat differently (and a lot more!) than we did five years ago, if I should re-think that stance.

So I’d love to hear some honest feedback on this from you all. Do you think a Costco membership is something I should consider? Do you feel like you can often beat the prices I pay for things by shopping at Costco? I’d love for you to give me your honest thoughts and input.

By the way, you should know that we don’t have a Costco nearby our house (I actually don’t even know where the Costco is here!), so it would mean a little out-of-the-way trip to shop there. But if you think I could spend our $70 per week more wisely by shopping at Costco, I’d love to hear. Convince me!

Can you really buy healthy food on a budget?

Can you eat healthy on a budget? Absolutely!! Here's how!

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.).

For live updates, be sure to follow my Instagram Stories. See all posts on my $70 Grocery Budget here.

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.

People ask me all the time if I think it’s possible to eat healthfully on a budget. And my answer is always, absolutely!

You might spend a little more if you decide to prioritize certain things, but you can find great deals on clean and healthy (and even organic!) foods.

We choose to have a pretty balanced diet around here. I buy some treats and junk food and then we also eat a lot of fresh fruits and veggies and whole grains. That’s what works for our family.

But something else might work for your family — and you can still find plenty of creative ways to keep your grocery budget low. It’s all about deciding that you are going to do the best you can instead of throwing up your hands and convincing yourself that you can’t.

This morning, I ran into Kroger to get some of the deals that are part of their Buy 4, Get $5 Off sale. I ended up not even having any time to get those because I found so many markdowns and great deals.

Markdowns are one of my favorite ways to save money on healthful foods. And so many stores offer them (people keep telling me that Target has great markdowns on meat! Have you found that to be true? I need to go scout out Target soon!).

Thursday Kroger Shopping Trip

Here’s what I got:

More posts to check out:

Stretch your online shopping savings with RetailMeNot + enter to win a $500 Visa gift card!

(Note: This post and giveaway were sponsored by RetailMeNot. Read our disclosure policy here.)

Download the Retail Me Not app to get the best retail discounts and deals!

If you’ve been in the couponing world for any length of time, you probably know that is a popular place to find some of the best savings for online shopping.

With thousands of coupons, deals, and cash back offers, RetailMeNot makes it really easy to save on everything you need — especially if you need last-minute clothing or school supplies for back to school season!

And what you may not realize is that RetailMeNot has rolled out some really great new features recently!

They have a new browser extension called RetailMeNot Genie. If you’re too busy to search for deals yourself, RetailMeNot Genie is really helpful!

Basically, this new RetailMeNot Genie browser extension does all the legwork for you — it finds, combines, and applies savings at checkout when you’re shopping at your favorite online stores!

You don’t have to hunt down codes or wonder if they’ll actually work. When you’re shopping on a site, the Genie extension will automatically test and apply any coupon codes that currently exist! It’s really cool!

I actually tried this out when I was shopping online at Kohl’s the other day! Genie found four different live codes to try.

And then it went through the process of testing each code.

In the end, it automatically applied the best code that could be used — saving me a total of $7.63! It was SUPER easy and required almost no work on my part! All I had to do was hit the Genie button when I was ready to check out!

Aside from saving money online, you can also download the FREE RetailMeNot app to access thousands of discounts on your mobile device.

Here are some highlights about the RetailMeNot app:

  • As I already stated, it’s totally FREE to download!
  • It features thousands of in-store and online savings offers.
  • Deals can be redeemed directly from your phone.
  • You can even use the “Eat” tab to get deals at restaurants.
  • You can enable location-based alerts so that you know when there’s a deal at a store nearby.
  • There is a wallet within the app that stores all of your saved offers and deals, discount gift cards, and cash back status.
  • You can use the heart to save your favorite stores in one place.
  • And you can even tap the star to save a deal for later.

RetailMeNot makes it so easy to save — whether you choose to use their website, app, or Genie.

Want to win a $500 VISA Gift Card?!

Update: This giveaway has closed and the winner has been contacted via e-mail.

RetailMeNot is offering a giveaway for one lucky MSM reader to win a $500 VISA gift card!

To enter for your chance to win, follow these steps:

  1. Go here and install the RetailMeNot Genie browser extension.
  2. Visit your favorite online store and see what savings RetailMeNot Genie gives you! (You’ll find discounts for hundreds of stores like Kohl’s, Macy’s, Best Buy, and so many more!)
  3. Comment on this post with the discount you’re most excited to use.

This giveaway will run through the end of day, September 12, 2018.

(Note: This post and giveaway were sponsored by RetailMeNot. Read our disclosure policy here.)

Free Grocery Savings Made Simple Video Series!

(Note: The links in this post are affiliate links, and we will be compensated when you make a purchase by clicking through our links. Read our disclosure policy here.)

Trying to reign in the grocery budget?

If so, be sure to sign up for this FREE Grocery Savings Made Simple Video Series!

This 3-part training series will teach you:

  • 16 Things You Should NEVER Buy at the Grocery Store (and where you should buy them instead)
  • 13 Grocery Store Sales You Should IGNORE (and which ones you should ALWAYS take advantage of)
  • 13 Strategies to be a Savvy Shopper (so you can OUTSMART the grocery store, every week!)

Go here to sign up for the FREE Grocery Savings Made Simple Video Series!

Breckenridge, budgets, free fun, and a sale you don’t want to miss!

We are flying home from Breckenridge as I write this. As I mentioned a few days ago, my dad’s Christmas gift to all of us was this trip to CO for all 28 of us. (Yes, is that not the best gift ever??)

It was a fantastic trip — my dad rented this HUGE house for us all that was right on the edge of beautiful trails and had gorgeous views. We hiked many miles, were amazed by the scenery, and even saw mountain goats and moose in the wild!

One thing we were not prepared for was how crazy expensive everything was in Breckenridge. We went into town two of the days and we basically just had our jaws dropped the whole time at the prices.

$20 to ride up a ski lift? $27 to go on the mountain roller coaster? $11 for a crepe?

Say what??

Yeah. It was pretty ridiculous to us and I can’t imagine living around there!

We’ve been trying to stick with a pretty tight budget recently because we’re working on replenishing our Emergency Fund and saving up for some other things. So we tried to spend as little as possible on this trip.

(By the way, involving our kids in the budgeting/spending/financial decisions process has been such a good thing. We’ve sat down and showed them our budget numbers on YNAB and have asked them to help us stay accountable and be as creative as we can to spend less so that we can save toward some of our current goals. We’ve found this so helpful as they are constantly checking to make sure that any purchase we make is in the budget and encouraging us all to think outside the box and get creative in order to save money!)

We found that there are plenty of fun things to do that don’t cost money — including beautiful hikes, strolling around downtown in Breckenridge, and riding the Gondola (it’s free and there are such great views from it — including getting to see moose!).

We had a Starbucks gift card (thanks, Swagbucks!), so we used it to buy some drinks at the adorable yellow Starbucks house in downtown Breckenridge. We couldn’t believe how big this Starbucks was and it’s a great place to use the bathroom if you need to!

So many of you reached out on Instagram and recommended that we go to the Crepes A La Cart place in Breck. We decided that would be our one splurge of the trip. However, the first day that we tried to go, the line was so long that we realized we would be waiting at least an hour or more.

We came back the next day (Monday) and the line was much shorter. We still waited about 45 minutes total — but it was worth the wait. (Especially because you get to watch them make the crepes right in front of you!)

By the way, the cinnamon/sugar/butter crepe is only $5 and they had a few other crepes that were around $8. They are big so we bought three and split them amongst the 6 of us (we had my sister’s daughter with us, too). It was the perfect treat and because of getting to watch them make the crepes, it felt like more of an “experience” than just a simple stop for a snack!

A Deal You Don’t Want to Miss!

Speaking of budgets and saving money, we had some requests to offer a Labor Day sale on our courses and digital products. I wasn’t planning to, but I decided that it’s been a few months since we’ve run a sale so we’re going to do a 36-hour Flash Sale of ALL of our products.

And guess how much of a discount you can get with this sale?? 50% off!

That’s right, when you use coupon code FLASHSALE, you’ll get half off the price of every single one of our courses. You can order as many courses as you’d like at this discount.

This sale is only good through Wednesday evening (September 5, 2018) at midnight. Get in on these great deals while you can!

Blogging Courses:

Intentional Living Courses:

Be sure to use coupon code FLASH SALE to get these prices! And remember, you can use this coupon code as many times as you’d like!