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9 Nov 2011   ·   35
Money Saving Mom

15-Minute Freezer Cooking: Cookie Dough Baked Oatmeal

This recipe was really quick and easy to whip up. I modified the original recipe some (no surprise there!) and took it times six so it would make enough for a 9×13-inch pan.

The final result was pretty good, though we didn’t love it. I think it was the bananas that made it a little on the weird side.

Yes, I know, we love bananas and chocolate when they are in desserts such as Black Bottom Banana Bars or Chocolate Banana Bread, but they just gave a little odd flavor and consistency to baked oatmeal.

I’m thinking we’d like it better if we used our regular baked oatmeal recipe and just added in chocolate chips for a twist.

But the good news is that we ate half the pan for breakfast and I froze the other half (cut in squares and stuck in a freezer bag) for breakfast next week. So this 15-Minute Freezer Cooking project actually made it into the freezer, unlike yesterday’s project. 🙂

9 Nov 2011   ·   6
Money Saving Mom

Walmart: Current Deals

Here are the best deals at Walmart right now with thanks to Heather from Passion for Savings for her help in compiling them. The prices below are based on Northwest Arkansas region. Please keep in mind that Walmart deals vary by region so the prices listed here will not be valid at all stores.

Idahoan Potatoes – $0.98
Use $1/1 printable
Or use Free coupon from the November All You magazine
Free after coupon

Pepcid AC (8 ct) – $4.38
Use $4/1 coupon from the 11/6 SmartSource insert
$0.38 after coupon (Thanks, Freebies 2 Deals!)

Carefree To Go – $0.94
Use $0.50/1 coupon from the 11/6 RedPlum insert
$0.44 after coupon

Hungry Jack Au Gratin Potatoes – $0.98
Buy 2 and use $1/2 coupon from the 11/6 RedPlum insert
$0.48 each after coupon

Renuzit Adjustables Singles – $0.94
Buy 6 and use $1/6 coupon from the 11/6 RedPlum insert
$0.77 each after coupon

Pillsbury Brownie Mix – $1.50
Buy 2 and use $1/2 coupon from the 11/6 RedPlum insert
$1 each after coupon

Pillsbury Frosting – $1.50
Buy 2 and use $1/2 coupon from the 11/6 RedPlum insert
$1 each after coupon

Hormel Chunk Chicken – $1.48
Buy 2 and use $0.55/2 printable
$1.21 each after coupon

Boost Kid Essentials Multipack – $4.98
Use $3/1 printable
$1.98 after coupon

See the full list of Walmart deals here.


Did you find a great deal at Walmart? Just post about it on your blog and leave your link below. To make it easy for everyone to navigate quickly through the links, your link must link directly to your Walmart deals post. Links going to the homepage of your blog or any other part of your blog besides the direct link to your Walmart deals post will be deleted.

9 Nov 2011   ·   2
Money Saving Mom

48-Hour Giveaway: $40 credit from (10 Winners)

Snapily, a site that offers personalized 3D cards, ornaments, notebooks, and more, is offering 10 readers the chance to win a $40 credit to their site. They also offer a free $3 credit for new sign-ups. Products start at $3.99, so you can get them for as low as $0.99. However, you still have to pay shipping.

I’ve not personally used this site or seen their products, but it looks like they have some unique things to offer, including their flip animation products that combine two photos into one photo.

To enter to win a free $40 credit to Snapily, click on the graphic below and type in your name and email address. 10 winners will be chosen and posted on Monday. This giveaway ends Friday, November 11, at 11:59 pm, CST.

Enter the Giveaway

9 Nov 2011   ·   13
Money Saving Mom

A Handmade Christmas: Noel Blocks

Guest post by Jessica from Preserving Life’s Moments

After making these easy Boo Blocks, I just knew I needed to make some for Christmas, too. I chose the word Noel and I haven’t decided yet if they’ll stay here or be gifted out to a special someone in my life.

Supplies You’ll Need To Make “Noel” Blocks:

  • a 2×6 piece of wood cut into 6, 7, 8 and 9 inch blocks (My husband cut my pieces out of leftover wood he had saved from a previous project.)
  • sandpaper paint and paint brush
  • scrapbook paper
  • letters (I cut mine using my Cricut. You can also purchase letters at a store, or print them out from the internet.)
  • ribbon
  • embellishments (optional)
  • adhesive of your choice (craft glue, double sided tape, etc.)

Step 1: Cut your wood, sand it and paint with a color that coordinates with the paper you have chosen.

Step 2: Cut your paper to size. I left a 1/4 of an inch around each block.

Step 3: Adhere your paper to your blocks. I used double-sided tape. That stuff works for just about anything and is super easy to use.

Step 4: Adhere your letters to the blocks.

Step 5: Tie your ribbon around the edges.

Step 6: Finally, add some embellishments if you would like. I have added a couple flowers and sparkles on mine.

I had almost all of these items lying around my house so this was a very inexpensive and easy project to create. It is perfect as a decoration in your home or a great gift to give to that special teacher, friend, or family member in your life.

Jessica is a work-at-home mom to Shane (4.5) and Adalyn (11 months). She loves photography, crafting, reading, baking, and cooking. You can read about all of Jessica and her families adventures at Preserving Life’s Moments.

Do you have a great idea for a handmade Christmas gift? We’d love to have you submit your tutorial for possible publication for our Handmade Christmas series.

9 Nov 2011   ·   101
Money Saving Mom

Reader Tip: Use vinegar as a substitute for fabric softener

Daniela emailed in the following tip:

I’ve been using vinegar instead of fabric softener in my laundry recently. I just add it in the rinse cycle to solve hard water fading on the clothes. It works great, our clothes look better than they did with some of the more expensive fabric softeners, and it costs us a fraction of what we used to pay for fabric softener. -Daniela

photo credit

9 Nov 2011   ·   35
Money Saving Mom

Lands’ End: Men’s Relaxed Fit Jeans for $9.74 shipped

Lands’ End has Men’s Relaxed Fit Jeans for $9.74 shipped plus 8% cashback. Here’s how to get them:

::Click through the ShopAtHome site to the Land’s End site to get 8% cashback.

::Go to this link and see if they have the size you are looking for available (they are selling out quickly!). They also have some straight leg jeans available here for the same price.

::Put your selection in your cart and go to checkout.

::Use coupon code DISCOVERLE and pin 6702 to get 25% off plus free shipping (no minimum).

::That makes these jeans just $9.74 shipped (plus tax, if applicable).

(Note: The links in this post are my referral links. Read my disclosure policy here.)

9 Nov 2011   ·   6
Money Saving Mom The best household & grocery deals this week

Here are some of this week’s best grocery & household deals from Many of these prices are higher than what you’d pay by combining coupons with sales, but they may be good deals for you if you live where there aren’t many stores or deals are scarce:

Luvs Diapers: Pick up Luvs Diapers with Ultra Leakguards for as low as $0.11 each right now on Amazon.

Nature Valley: Stock up with this Nature Valley Crunch Bars Variety Pack: 72 bars for just $14.10, or $0.20 each.

Clif Kid Zbars: If you’re looking for an affordable, healthy, organic, on-the-go snack, Zbars are one of our family’s favorites. Get Clif Kid Chocolate Brownie Zbars (18 ct.) for just $10.19 shipped, the lowest price we’ve seen all year!

Peter Pan Peanut Butter: In the face of rising peanut butter prices, right now you can get the big 40 oz. jars of Peter Pan Creamy Peanut Butter for $4.69 each.

Pirate’s Booty: Here’s another deal on a great, gluten-free crunchy snack. Pirate’s Booty Veggie (24 ct. 1 oz. bags) are on sale for $18.69, or just $0.78 each.

Emergen-C: Rather than stocking up on expensive electrolyte drinks, pick up Emergen-C Electro Mix (30 ct.) for $5.01. That’s just $0.17/packet.

Lysol Toilet Bowl Cleaner: Combine the Subscribe & Save discount with a special coupon code to get Lysol Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner Discs for $1.75 each.

Terry & Mandi are a busy mother-daughter team that look for ways to save money without sacrificing a lot of time, and they share their love for all things at Jungle Deals & Steals.

9 Nov 2011   ·   11
Money Saving Mom

Recyclebank: Free subscription to Better Homes and Gardens, Good Housekeeping, or Parents magazine

Not only can you earn free magazine subscriptions through EcoBonus, you can also earn free magazine subscriptions through Recyclebank. Here’s how:

::Sign up or login to your Recyclebank account.

::Go to the Earn Points tab and earn 115 points. You can earn 25 points by taking the GE quiz, 25 points by taking the Turn Off the Tap Quiz, 25 points by taking the Kashi Lifecycle of a Cereal Box Quiz, 25 points by taking the Turn Off the Tap Quiz, 5 points by signing up for the Uncommon Goods email newsletter, 5 points from Earth 911, and more points from the Aveeno Facebook challenges.

::Once you have earned 115 points, click on the Get Rewards tab and then go to the Music, Books, and Magazines subsection. You can use your 115 points to sign up for a free subscription to Better Homes and Gardens, Good Housekeeping, or Parents magazine.

(Note: The link in this post is my referral link. Read my disclosure policy here.)

9 Nov 2011   ·   9

Free $10 Old Navy, Starbucks, or Whole Foods gift card when you refer 10 friends

With Christmas coming up, I thought I should mention this deal again for those who didn’t get a chance to sign up the last time I posted it:

Shop It To Me is offering a $10 gift card to Old Navy, Whole Foods, Starbucks, Amazon or other stores when you refer 10 friends.

Just sign up for a Shop It To Me account, if you don’t already have one. And then refer ten friends by emailing them, posting your link on your Facebook page, posting a link on Twitter or posting your link on your blog and you’ll receive a $10 gift card of your choice for every ten friends who sign up. As a common courtesy, I don’t recommend that you invite friends by email without their permission first.

Your gift card will arrive by mail once ten friends have signed up. I have personally gotten multiple free gift cards through referrals from this site so I can vouch for its legitimacy.

(Note: The link in this post is my referral link. Read my disclosure policy here.)

9 Nov 2011   ·   19
Money Saving Mom

EcoBonus: Free subscription to Taste of Home, Organic Gardening, Smart Money, or 78 other magazines

If you didn’t get your free Nature’s Path product yesterday, you can still sign up for that. Or, you can use your free EcoBonus points to score a free subscription to one of 81 different magazines!

The free magazine subscriptions you can choose from include:

  • Organic Gardening
  • Taste of Home
  • Everyday with Rachael Ray
  • Smart Money
  • Parenting Magazine
  • Food Network

Thanks, The Frugal Greenish Mama!

9 Nov 2011   ·   27
Money Saving Mom

Rite Aid: 15 free 4×8 photo cards + 25 free 4×6 photo prints (free in-store pickup!)

Rite Aid is jumping on the free photos bandwagon! Here’s how to get 15 free 4×8 photo cards plus 25 free 4×6 photo prints:

::Login or register at the Rite Aid site.

::Create a 4×8 photo card and add 15 photo cards to your cart.

::Go to checkout and use promo code FREECARDS to get them free.

::You can also order 25 4×6 photo prints and use coupon code FREEPRINTS to get them free.

::Choose in-store pickup and your total should be $0.00.

Thanks, Sample Stuff!

8 Nov 2011   ·   142
Money Saving Mom

21 Days to a More Disciplined Life: Discipline is a Choice

Based upon your responses to yesterday’s introductory post, many of us are longing for more discipline in our lives. We crave order and peace. We want to be better managers of our time and life. We want to follow through with our good intentions.

But so many times I’ve found that I try to go about developing a more disciplined life in all the wrong ways. I check out a book on living an organized life from the library and think it will make all the difference. I download a printable household organization planner and think it will magically whip my house into shape. Or I think that if my house or life or responsibilities were different, then I could achieve a disciplined life.

Instead of addressing the root issue–my lack of self-discipline–I think that a fancy new system is going to fix the problem. A bad system is not the problem. I am the problem.

Oh sure. Life throws curveballs. There are job losses, babies born, illnesses, moves, and projects that can get one off course. But ultimately, whether or not I live a disciplined life is dependent solely upon me and the choices I make on a daily basis.

Those are tough words to swallow. And I could wallow in frustration over my short-comings and failures. However, instead, I want to let it motivate me. I am the problem, but I am also the solution.

I don’t need to spend hundreds of dollars on organizational products. I don’t need to buy 20 books on living a disciplined life. Instead, I need to resolve to change from the inside out.

Tomorrow we’ll talk about how to start making specific, realistic changes to transform a cluttered, chaotic life into an orderly, organized life.

Practical Application

To jumpstart the 21 Days to a More Disciplined Life Challenge, choose one small project that has been nagging at you for the last few weeks or months and go start and complete it in the next 24 hours. You may find that it didn’t end up taking you near as long as you thought it would and you’ll feel so good to have it done.

I’m tackling the laundry pile (no surprise there, I’m sure, as this seems to the area I’m constantly struggling in!). Ever since returning from Relevant, I’ve been woefully behind on laundry. So I’m going to aim to get completely caught up within the next 24 hours. And then I’m going to be intentional about keeping the momentum going… more on that in a few days.

Come back tomorrow afternoon/evening and I’ll tell you how it went–and you can tell us how your project went, too!

photo credit

8 Nov 2011   ·   55
Money Saving Mom

15-Minute Freezer Cooking: Chocolate Bottom Banana Bars

So, I told you I was going to try out a new method of freezer cooking–just devoting 15 minutes each afternoon or evening to making one thing ahead to store in the freezer. It was a good idea and I think it will probably work well.

There was just one problem: I really should have doubled or tripled the Chocolate Bottom Banana Bar recipe. Because, you see, after I made them yesterday afternoon, everyone had to try one for dinner. Then, the typical 3 p.m. chocolate cravings hit this afternoon (please tell me I’m not the only one who has these!?), so out came the pan of Chocolate Bottom Banana Bars again.

And well, there are no Chocolate Bottom Banana Bars left to put in the freezer. Ahem.

But seriously, while I may have had a little more than my fair share of these, I promise I didn’t eat the whole pan. Just maybe, um, oh a fourth of it. 😉

I’m going to try really, really hard for tonight’s baking project–the Cookie Dough Baked Oatmeal–to actually make it in the freezer. Well, at least part of it!

By the way, I tried a new setting on my camera today and was so excited with how this photo turned out. It was probably a fluke thing that I’ll never be able to repeat, but it made me happy nonetheless that I actually took a photo that looked halfway decent. 🙂