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Category: LITE Feed (non-deal) Posts

Brigette’s $81 Grocery Shopping Trip and Weekly Menu Plan for 6


1 gallon Whole Milk – $1.31

1 gallon 1% Milk – $1.31

1 can Whipped Topping – $2.65

1 64-oz carton Orange Juice – $1.69

2 boxes Frosted Flakes – $1.78

1 box Honey Nut Oats – $1.15

1 jar Sauekraut – $1.69

1 pkg Wild Caught Salmon – $3.99

1 fresh Pork Butt Roast ($1.49/lb) – $10.22

1 pkf fresh Chicken Thighs ($0.89/lb) – $3.96

1 large jar Organic Apple Cider Vinegar – $3.49

1 pkg Frozen Broccoli Florets – $0.89

4 cans Green Beans – $1.48

1 bag Zucchini – $1.49

1 Cabbage – $1.39

1 pkg Spinach – $1.19

1 large tub Organic Spring Mix – $3.49

2 bags Mini Cucumbers – $3.38

1 bag Fresh Green Beans – $1.39

2 bags Broccoli Crowns – $3.58

2 cartons Grape Tomatoes – $1.98

2 cartons Blackberries – $1.78

1 bunch Bananas ($0.37/lb) – $0.99

1 3-lb bag Mandarin Oranges – $2.69

1 jar Pasta Sauce – $0.85

3 6-ct pkgs Unsweetened Applesauce – $2.67

1 box Cheese Crackers – $1.49

3 bags Pretzels – $1.47

1 loaf Bread, reduced – $0.25

1 pkg Flour Tortillas – $0.65

1 pkg Hamburger Buns – $0.65

1 pkg Rice Cakes – $1.15

1 5-ct box Pure and Simple Bars – $3.99

1 16-oz pkg Shredded Mozzarella Cheese – $2.49

1 16-oz pkg Shredded Cheddar Cheese – $2.15

Total: $76.77

Harris Teeter

2 dozen Eggs – $1.54

2 Knorr Pasta Sides – $2.00, used $0.50/2 Knorr Sides Products – 1-6-19 RMN (exp. 01/20/19) (doubled) – $1.00/2 after coupons

1 pkg RX Nut Butter – $1.99, used FREE catalina print out coupon, plus receive $0.55 rebate from Ibotta – $0.55 MM after coupon and rebate

1 bag Steamable Fresh Vegetables, reduced – $1.00

1 jar Simply Ragu – $1.88, used $0.75/1 Ragu Simply Pasta Sauce – 1-6-19 SS; Includes 24 oz Only (exp. 02/03/19) (doubled) – $0.38

2 boxes Jif Power-Ups – $3.98, used $0.75/1 printable (doubled) – $0.98/2 boxes after coupons

Total after Coupons and Rebates: $4.35

Grocery Total for the Week: $81.12

Weekly Menu Plan


Everyone is responsible for making/cleaning up their own breakfasts. Choices include:

Cereal, Oatmeal, Toast, Fried/Scrambled/Boiled Eggs, Veggie Omelets, Fruit, Smoothies


Cheese Quesadillas, Carrots, Applesauce x 2

Pretzels, Cucumbers, Oranges, Hard Boiled Eggs (we still have several dozen eggs leftover from the last few weeks) x 2

Rice Cakes with Peanut Butter, Blackberries, Grape Tomatoes, Cheese Sticks (leftover from last week) x 2



Crockpot Pulled Pork (my roast will make a huge amount – enough for several meals. We will eat it twice this week, and I’ll freeze the rest), Tossed Salad, Green Beans, Alfredo Pasta

Chicken and Cabbage Fried Rice, Egg Drop Soup, Chinese Broccoli (I’ll use regular broccoli)

Pulled Pork Sandwiches (using leftover Pulled Pork), Oven Baked Potato Fries, Roasted Broccoli

Crispy Baked Chicken Thighs, Biscuits, Easy Fried Cabbage, Applesauce

Baked Salmon (using the fresh herbs still growing on my screened porch – I can’t believe they are surviving the colder weather), Pull Apart Rolls, Green Beans, Baked Potatoes

Fried Venison Steaks, Sauteed Zucchini, Creamy Milk Rice, Leftover Pull Apart Rolls


The Outfit Formulas That Changed My Life

If you’ve been following my blog for a long time, you know that for years I said, “I’m not a fashionista!”

I felt so inept when it came to putting together cute outfits and I felt like anytime anyone complimented me on my outfit, I needed to apologize for someone or deflect the compliment by saying something like, “Oh this shirt?? I just pulled it out at the last minute and I don’t really like it.” Or, “Thanks, but I don’t really know this dress is my style.”

I said these things because I felt so insecure about my ability to put outfits together and I constantly second-guessed myself. When I realized how much I was doing this and how much I wished I could figure out how to put cute outfits together, I finally decided to do something about it.

  1. I started paying attention to what I liked. I began noticing outfits that other people wore that I liked and started a mental checklist of what my tastes were. I also poked around on Pinterest and Instagram and paid attention to simple and frugal outfits that other people posted that I liked.
  2. I gave myself permission to try new things. I let myself actually buy some new styles and colors — to try out and see what I thought.
  3. I learned about what outfit formulas were. I joined a program that taught me about outfit formulas and how to put together outfits — and then it gave you a few weeks of outfit formulas to follow and experiment with.
  4. I kept experimenting and paying attention. I surprised myself so much by loving the outfit formula program and being challenged to follow the formulas. I even got brave and posted pictures of my outfits for almost an entire month on social media and learned so much from seeing the photo of myself and hearing feedback from you all. It helped me to define what I like, it helped me to realize a lot of things I was doing wrong, and to figure out what was working and what wasn’t working.

Now, over a year since I did that outfit formula program, I dress very differently and I find so much joy in putting together outfits. And I know what works for me and what doesn’t. I never thought this would be possible, but it’s true!

And I’m so excited to be bringing on the amazing woman who created this program with the outfit formulas I mentioned that. Alison Lumbatis from Get Your Pretty On is so good at not only putting cute outfits together, but also in helping everyday women like me learn how to dress fashionably — even on a small budget!

We’ll chat about how she got motivated to dress well even when she started working from home, why she created her style challenges, how inspirational her Facebook group is, and much more! Wherever you are along the path to fashion that reflects who you are and shows you at your best, don’t miss this conversation.

In This Episode:

[02:47] – I can’t sing the praises of Google Calendar highly enough. I know it might seem old-fashioned, but it has helped me to be so much more organized and productive.

[06:39] – You can learn more about my process for using Google Calendar from my free PDF download, which you can find at this link!

[07:04] – My book pick of the week is one that doesn’t have that great of reviews on Amazon, but I really enjoyed it.

[11:13] – I’ve never felt like a fashionista, but I finally decided to put more effort into dressing well. Following an outfit formula program made so much difference!

[13:50] – Alison Lumbatis from Get Your Pretty On created the outfit formula program that helped me so much, and she’s today’s guest!

[14:49] – We hear about how Alison created her blog and brought it to the point where it is today.

[17:46] – I ask Alison when she started doing her fashion and style challenges and she shares the interesting journey that led her to begin these.

[21:03] – Don’t know where to start when it comes to putting outfits together? Alison shares advice and budget-friendly fashion tips.

[22:36] – Alison is generously offering a freebie to listeners: her SAHM Casual Wardrobe Basics Builder!

[23:14] – If Alison were to choose five must-have wardrobe items, what would they be, and why?

[28:11] – I answer a listener’s question about where to take the Enneagram test!

Links and Resources:

How to Listen to The Crystal Paine Show

The podcast is available on iTunesAndroidStitcher, and Spotify. You can listen online through the direct player we’ll include in the show notes of each episode. OR, a much easier way to listen is by subscribing to the podcast through a free podcast app on your phone. (Find instructions for how to subscribe to a podcast here.)

Ready to dive in and listen? Hit the player above or search for “The Crystal Paine Show” on your favorite podcast app.

Sponsor Spotlight

Today’s episode is sponsored by Twigby — a company dedicated to providing fantastic phone service at great prices. As I mentioned in the podcast, if you are looking for a great deal on a phone for your teen (or yourself!), I’d highly recommend checking out what Twigby has to offer.

Unlike traditional cell phone companies, they give you the ability to create your own custom, prepaid plan — without a contract or an unnecessary activation fee.

You don’t have to mess with going to a store and picking out a phone plan. You just go to their site, pick your phone plan and either switch your current phone over or get a new phone, and they get it all set up for you.

My favorite part about their service (in addition to their great prices!) is that they offer plan flexibility with the ability to change plans or phones at any time for free. You’re not locked into an expensive contract that has activation and termination fees.

They also offer Free Overage Protection, so you can rest easy in knowing that you will never be charged for overages without your go-ahead! You have complete control.

Special offer! Want to save 25% off your first 6 months of TwigbyClick here.

Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission — at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for your support!

5 Tips to Save Time and Money on Groceries

Guest post by Jenna from Particular Pantry

Need some quick and easy tips to help you save more money at the grocery store in 2019? Here are five of my favorites:

1. Plan Your Meals

It has been said time and time again, but meal planning really is the one of the best ways to save both time and money at the grocery store (here’s a great free printable meal planning kit).

Of course this tip comes at the expense of spending a good amount of extra time at home planning out the meals and grocery list at least a week at a time.

However, when done well, meal planning saves some serious cash by giving every single item on your list a specific purpose. It also helps you find places to trim or double up on certain items and you are creating your plan and even includes planning for leftovers.

2. Make Well-Organized Grocery Lists

While your meal plan can help save you money, a well-organized grocery list can help save you time at the store.

I’ve tried paper lists, grocery list apps, and everything else under the sun and they can all work. But the list only makes your shopping faster IF you follow one important rule… organize your list by department.

That means instead of writing your list in whichever order you think of adding them (ie: eggs, avocado, chicken, bananas) causing you to run back and forth across the store, your list should have like items together so you can work your way through your list and the store at the same time.

Bonus points if you set up your list to follow the floor plan of your actual store.

3. Shop Your Pantry First

Before you head to the store, make sure to shop your pantry, refrigerator, and freezer first. In fact, this should probably come before tip #1 because if you really want to up your game, you can plan your meals based on the items you already have at home!

By using what you already have, you are not only saving money by not buying more groceries, but also saving the time it would take to think about whether or not you have a certain item in your pantry already.

4. Use Technology To Your Benefit

Once you finally get to the grocery store, make sure to use technology to your benefit. Because… there’s an app for that!

Remember the list you made? There’s an app for that too! My favorite is Our Groceries because my husband can add items from his phone and it will instantly appear on my list. Also, it’s automatically organized by store department and you can edit the department if you need to.

I haven’t tried every app out there, but I’m sure there are plenty of others that would serve this purpose just as well.

There are also apps for helping save you money at the store, from Walmart’s Savings Catcher to the Target Red Card (and Cartwheel) you can always save money if you take a few minutes to check out the deals before heading into the store.

5. Order Groceries Online

I’ve saved my very favorite tip for last because it compliments every other tip from this list AND makes my life exponentially better.

Ordering groceries online is the one-two punch you might not have expected to see on this list… right?

There is a stigma that ordering groceries for pickup or delivery is a luxury and very expensive. In truth, ordering groceries online can be a great way to save money (and obviously time) on groceries.

While there is often a slight markup on some product and/or a delivery fee, those extra costs are often offset by the other benefits of buying groceries online.

  • No more worrying about shopping while hungry.
  • No more making unhealthy or unnecessary impulse purchases.
  • No more going back to return an item you’ve decided might not fit the budget or meal plan for the week.

All of the grocery delivery services I’ve tried not only let me see the running total as I add items to the cart but they always have sale sections that are very easy to find and plan meals around.

I shouldn’t even need to mention how much time you can save by not stepping foot in the grocery store, but ordering groceries online allows you to fit groceries into your schedule when you can’t manage a full trip to the store.

Bottom line, grocery shopping has to be done… but if you can do it faster and within your budget maybe it won’t be such a source of pain!

What are YOUR best tips to save time AND money on groceries?

Jenna is a mom to four awesomely exhausting children. She believes that finding the right food for your family should be easier. That’s why she is committed to providing information you need to make deliberate choices for your family over at Particular Pantry.

Have you signed up yet?

It’s the LAST DAY of the Eat at Home Challenge. I’m sad for it to come to an end, but it’s been fun to get to hang out with you on Facebook and to get so many great recipe ideas and inspiration from you all!

I wanted to remind you that today is also the very last day to get a subscription to Eat at Home Menu Planning service for 30% off! If you haven’t taken advantage of this deal yet and have been meaning to, this is your gentle reminder that you need to run over and purchase — because the deal ends at midnight!

I’m just loving getting these messages from those of you who are signing up:

My Top 3 Reasons I Love Eat at Home

  1. My favorite thing about the Eat at Home Menu Plan Service is that — unlike many other menu plan services — you don’t have to pick one menu plan — you get access to four complete menu plans every single week. Yes, that’s right!
  2. I also LOVE that the plans were put together with busy families in mind — and many of the recipes can be made in less than 15 minutes.
  3. Finally, the recipes are GOOD! Someone asked this morning on Facebook Live whether we like all of the recipes and I could genuinely say that we typically love 50% of them, that we like 40-45% of them, and there are just 5-10% that aren’t necessarily ones we like. I think that’s pretty impressive considering we’re feeding 5 people here who have different palates!

Last Night’s Dinner:

Last night, we had Chicken Curry in the Crockpot. It was my first time making Chicken Curry and I was so happy with how it turned out!

Everyone liked it and it reminded us of our time in India last year. (We had the kids try their hand at eating without silverware since that’s the way they eat Chicken Curry in India!)

What I Made Today:

Today’s recipe was Chicken Tortilla Soup. It was a simple recipe and the only extra work required was to cook the chicken. We did that yesterday (I like to bake chicken instead of boil it; it’s so much more tender!).

I’m excited to try the recipe out tonight — it smells so delicious!

If you want to watch me make it on on live video, here you go:


On the Fence About Purchasing?

Many of you have already purchased the Eat at Home menu-planning service and have written to tell me you are excited about all of the time and effort and money you are going to save with it.

But others of you are still sitting on the fence and wondering whether it’s worth the investment. And I totally get that.

I don’t want you to spend your hard-earned money on something that isn’t going to be a great fit for you. But I also don’t want you to miss this opportunity to get such a great deal… because this deal only comes around two times per year and it’s the lowest price that you’ll ever find this menu-planning service.

If you’re on the fence about purchasing, I want to help you out. Here are three steps I encourage you to take to make sure this is for you:

1. Leave a Comment… I’m Here to Answer Your Questions!

I will be checking comments here this afternoon and evening and am happy to answer your questions about the Eat at Home menu-planning service. Just leave a comment and ask whatever questions you have.

I’ll personally do my best to answer your question or to find out the answer for you! And trust me, I will be incredibly honest with you and let you know if I don’t think this menu-planning service is a good fit for you.

2. Download the Sample Menus

Want to see some samples of what the Eat at Home menu-plan service is like? You can view a sample menu plan for each of the 4 different menu plans you’ll get when you sign up for this service. Just go here to check out the sample menu plans here.

3. Try it Out for Two Weeks

Eat at Home offers a full two-week money-back guarantee. So if you think the service might work for you but you’re not sure, I recommend that you go ahead and signed up and try it out for a week to see if it will work. If it doesn’t, you can just email in and ask for your money back — no questions asked!

Have Picky Eaters?

Someone asked in the Eat at Home Facebook Group whether the Eat at Home Menu-Planning Service would work if you have picky eaters. I can’t promise or guarantee you anything, but here were some of the responses:

You can go here to read the rest of the responses to this question.

What You Get When You Sign Up

When you sign up for the Eat at Home Menu plan service (it’s just a few dollars per week — or less!), each month, you’ll get:

You can choose to stick with just the traditional menu plan or just the slow cooker menu plan or just the whole foods menu plan or just the no flour, no sugar menu plan. Or, you can rotate different menu plans on different weeks, depending upon what you feel like cooking or how much time you have!

Go sign up here — and use coupon code NEW at checkout to get 30% off! That makes the annual plan just $1.13 per week!

And don’t forget, if you have any questions about the Eat at Home Menu Plan service, just leave a comment and I’ll do my best to answer your question promptly!

P.S. Don’t forget, the Eat at Home Menu Plan service is only on sale until tonight at midnight! Use coupon code NEW at checkout to get 30% off — that’s the lowest price you’ll get this year! Find more details on these fantastic menu plans here.

Note: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, we will receive a commission — at no additional cost to you! Thank you for your support.

Gretchen’s $76 Grocery Shopping Trip and Weekly Menu Plan


3 bags Frozen Vegetables – $1 each

1 pkg Oven Roasted Chicken Breast – $2.69

1 pkg Kroger Rice – $0.89

1 Green Leaf Lettuce – $1.69

2 boxes Nature Valley Granola Cups – Marked down to $1.29 each, used $0.50/2 e-coupon – $1.04 each after coupon

1 bag Kroger Flour – $1.49

2 jars Pasta Sauce – $1 each

5.41 lbs Bananas – $2.65

1 Kroger Peanut Butter – $1.79

Used $0.25/1 Ibotta receipt

Total after coupon and rebate: $18.03


2 pkg Frozen Chicken Breasts – $5.99 each

1 Pineapple – $1.19

1 Unsweetened Applesauce – $1.89

1 pkg Shredded Cheese – $2.59

1 pkg Rice Cakes – $1.49

1 Half & Half – $1.79

1 loaf Bread – $1.49

1 pkg Applesauce Cups – $1.49

4 Avocados – $0.49 each

2 Cucumbers – $0.39 each

1 pkg Fruit & Grain Bars – $1.39

3 dozen Eggs – $0.59 each

2 pkg Frozen Strawberries – $1.95 each

1 lb Butter – $2.88

1 Yeast Packets – $0.89

1 pkg Lasagna Noodles – $1.39

1 pkg Roma Tomatoes – $1.19

1 canister Oats – $2.39

2 bags Sweet Potatoes – $1.99 (I’m using these to make a huge batch of baby food for my 8 month old!)

1 Moo Tubes Yogurt – $1.55

1 pkg English Muffins – $0.99

1 bag Almonds – $5.49

1 gallon Milk – $1.49

1 pkg Spinach – $1.19

1 pkg Flour Tortillas – $1.19 (These didn’t make it into the picture.)

Total: $58.33

Total for both stores: $76.36

Menu Plan for This Week


Cereal, Toast, Eggs, Smoothies, Granola Bars


Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwiches, Tossed Salads, Fruit/Veggies/Cheese, Cheese Quesadillas, Leftovers


Homemade Cheese Pizza, Breadsticks, Sliced Oranges

Chicken & Rice, Steamed Broccoli

Lasagna, Homemade Bread, Green Beans

Sweet & Sour Meatballs, Rice, Spinach Salad

Grilled Minute Steaks (from my mom), Steamed Cauliflower, Biscuits

Waffles, Eggs, Fruit Salad

Date night