Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Another week at CVS

So another week has passed and it's time to type up the tally. The monthly deals appear to run through 11/4, so after that I will be posting a month long tally. I promise it will be nuts. I also promised pictures, those will be forthcoming too. So here we go:

12 Carefree Pantiliners
12 Kotex Ultra Compact Pads
11 Playtex Sport Tampons
8 Colgate Max Fresh Toothpaste
6 Revlon 12 hr Single Eyeshadows
2 Loreal HIP Foundation
3 Oral B Crossaction Power Toothbrushes
3 Robitussin (4oz liquid)
3 Advil PM (20 ct)
2 Advil Cold & Sinus
1 Advil trial size (6ct)
1 Advil Liquigels (20ct)
1 Robitussin Cough Drops
1 Fresh Step Cati Litter (14 lb)
1 CVS trash bags (20 ct)
1 Underbed Storage box
1 Single serve CVS Pedialyte
1 Gold Emblem Cashews (Single pack)

Total oop: $19.24
Total coupons used: $91.72
Total ECB used: $153.67
Total ECB earned: $217.75

Not the best week, but I am still rolling. I also will be getting rebates back for some items. $9.00 from Wyeth for Advil/Robitussin
$4.97 from Playtex
$5.97 from Oral B

So while it may not be the most profitable week ever, I still did okay. The Cat litter and trash bags were actual household needs and I did not have coupons for them. If Justin likes the CVS trash bags, I will be stocking up as I have coupons for CVS brand items. As the month of October comes to a close, I will be glad to get a chance to catch my breath, between the pumpkin farm and all these great deals, it has been crazy this month. I am also submitting my Walgreens rebate this week, they will be giving me back $69.33 this time. Seeing as most of that was paid for with last month's rebate of $29, I am doing pretty good there too. Seems like the November deals are going to suck though, so I am trying to roll my ECBs out past Black Friday so that I can use them on that most hallowed of all shopping days.

Stay tuned for the insanity post sometime next week when the dust settles.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Last week's CVS tally

Since I have been under the weather lately, I did not post last week's totals from CVS. This month is a unique month with all the monthly and weekly deals being so great. Just wait until I post the monthly totals, that is going to be out of hand.

So here it is:

34 Pantene Ice Shine - 16 shampoo, 18 conditioner
10 Aleve (20 ct)
5 Bayer Low Dose Asprin (20ct)
4 Grape Nuts Trail Mix cereal
3 Kotex UltraCompact pads
3 12 pks of Diet Pepsi
2 One A Day All Day Energy
2 One A Day Weightsmart
2 CVS Babywipes (160 ct)
2 Small storage baskets
1 Sunday Tribune
1 Pocket pack of tissues
1 Crest Pro Health Rinse (trial size)

Total oop - $19.47
Total coupons used - $102.97
Total ECB used - $102.28
Total ECB earned - $206.89

I am beginning to LOVE October so much more. Even with the crazy schedule. Next month the deals go back to being normal, with a few moneymakers. But October deals have afforded me the opportunity to purchase something for pennies that I would never spend "real" money on. I am purchasing this for Andrew:

It is a Thomas & friends humidifier. Andrew has been into Thomas since we took him to see Thomas at the train museum this summer. This is an item that I would never have bought without the CVS deals. It retails around $50 and even my mom thought that was too much. But with ECBs, I am okay with buying it. I have to spend them before they expire. So, this will be the image that I keep when I am crushed to death by the weight of the Pantene when my bathroom cabinet collapses.

Toot, toot!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Run Andrew Run.

Monday was Andrew's 2 year check up. I know he is only 22 months, but our pediatrician told us that we should schedule early so Andrew could get a flu shot. Well, they don't even have the baby flu shot stuff yet. He is 34 1/2 inches and 31 pounds 4 oz. He is a big boy. He is totally healthy except for one thing. His testicles have not dropped. So, we are scheduling an ultrasound to see where they are. If they are out of the canal, having him run around a lot will drop them. If they are still in the canal, he will have to have surgery. From the title, you can guess which option we prefer. Apparently this is an issue because if he gets a high fever and they are still up there, he could be rendered sterile.

The past few days have not gone according to plans. I had Sunday off to take Andrew to the pumpkin farm. I picked this day a month ago. Well, it rained heavily on Sat. night and Sunday was bitterly cold out there. With nothing to block the wind, it is colder than in town. The pumpkin farm was dead, the horses weren't even there, and Andrew was not enjoying the bitter wind. So we got our pumpkins and headed home. He was very happy to get a fresh apple from the orchard shop to gnaw on.

Sunday night I started feeling dizzy and went to bed early. Monday I woke up feeling dizzy still, but went into work anyway. I wasn't there 15 minutes before my boss told me I was scaring him and sent me home. It is a rare occasion that he doesn't let me stay to accomplish whatever task I came in for since he knows that I have a 45 mile one way commute. This did allow me to be at Andrew's check up. I asked Dr. Wildman her opinion. She suggested I go home, eat something and lay down. If I still felt off, to call and see a grown up doctor. Went home, fell asleep until 4 pm. No chance of seeing a doctor then. Called into work today and went to see my doctor. He tells me it is probably viral. This is code for I have no clue what is bothering you. He did give me a prescription for something to stop the dizziness. Which is all I really needed. I just need to function at work.

So tomorrow, it will be back to the daily grind.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Best birthday present ever.

So today is my birthday and my boys are returning from Florida today. I have really missed them, although you would think I would enjoy the break from my hectic life. I just end up wandering around the house feeling lost. It is strange to be able to watch normal TV at 7:00 at night. I haven't heard the Bob the Builder song in a week. I miss Andrew telling goodnight. I wake up in the night feeling unsettled.

It was nice to have the bed to myself though. That I did enjoy because I like to sleep diagonally, which can be a problem for anyone sharing a bed with me. I used to kick when I was younger and my mom refused to share a bed with me on road trips. I also used to sleepwalk. I could very well still kick, talk, roll around and steal the covers. Justin hasn't complained lately. As far as I am concerned, it is his problem. I offered the option of twin beds when he was complaining about being abused in the night. It wasn't a big deal to me, as I know that I am a horrible sleeping companion. I also snore like mad, but so does he.

So today they will be home and I am sneaking out of work a little early. I could care less about presents, I am getting the best gift. Seeing my little boy. (I will still accept the gifts though)

Oh yeah and I will be getting 10 more bottles of Pantene.
The sickness knows no special occasions.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

This could be bad for morale.

I know that most of the people who read this won't get this post. But it's my blog and one of my fav soccer teams is in a crisis. I am a huge fan of Chelsea FC (football club), they are the current defending English Premier League Champions. They are my English club, I also support the Chicago Fire and the US Men's National Team. I was addicted to World Cup this summer, I love this sport and can only hope that it takes hold in America.

This past weekend, Chelsea played Reading and in the first 20 seconds our keeper was knocked unconscious from a challenge. He was hit hard and taken off the field unconscious. So, when I get home from the pumpkin farm on Sat and check in for the scores and match report, I see a picture of Petr Cech lying unconscious on the touchline. He is only one of the best, if not THE best, goalkeeper in the world and he will be out for at least 6 months, if not a year. This is not good. He had surgery on his skull, and appears to be doing better. He has regain consciousness. I am glad that he is doing better, but this is a big blow.

To make matters worse, the back up keeper, Carlo Cudicini was knocked unconscious at the very end of the game and while it was not nearly as bad as Petr's injury, he may not be available for the upcoming Champions League match against Barcelona. The most amazing John Terry had to finish the game in goal.

This season is going to be a tough one.
If we can't win this season, please don't let it be ManU.

**Update** - To make matters worse there are reports that Petr was conscious and the referee underestimated his injuries and ordered him to crawl to the sidelines to receive treatment. He barely reached the sideline, before he lost conciousness. If this truly is the case, it is reprehensible. It makes me angry.

Anyone who continues to call soccer players wimps, needs a kick in the head.

Friday, October 13, 2006

It's a sickness, I tell ya.

With this blog being about bargains, I should post about my stockpile. I started my stockpile just a month ago, when I got truly serious about couponing. That is about the time I discovered CVS. Anyone who wants to learn about how this all works can email me. Lisa can attest that it is awesome. CVS ruins you for shopping at other stores. It is easy to develop a CVS addiction. I was going to post a picture of the toothpaste, but Justin is in Florida and has the camera. So, I will have to post pictures later. For now, I will just give you a tally for this week, although the coupons I ordered arrived today, so I may have to stop tomorrow for a few more things.

This week at CVS:

6 boxes of Gas-X (10 ct)
1 Scott Toilet Paper (12 pk)
1 Bic Comfort 3 Advance razors (4ct)
1 Bic Comfort 3 Womens razors (4ct)
3 bottles ACT restore Mouthwash
2 bottles Benefiber chewables (36 ct)
8 Samy haircare products (3 shampoos, 3 conditioners, 1 mousse, 1 curl spray)
18 Garnier Fructis styling products (gels, mousses and creams)
4 bottles Pantene Ice Shine (2 shampoo, 2 conditioner)
4 tubes Colgate Max Fresh toothpaste (6 oz)
4 boxes Playtex Sport tampons
2 tubes Johnson & Johnson soothing vapor cream
1 bottle Johnson & Johnson Calming softwash
2 pks Huggies Pull-Ups
1 Heath bar

Total oop : $22.88 (yes, that is all I spent of my real money)
Total coupons : $72.75
Total ECB spent: $109.28
Total ECB earned: $ 210.85

Now that is what I call shopping. This month the deals are amazing. If you pay attention and use your coupons, you can really save yourself a lot of money. Even make some while you are at it. For those of you who do not know, ECBs are ExtraCareBucks. They are part of the CVS customer loyalty plan and spend like cash at CVS. The program is funded by manufacturers to get people to use their products. Also, for people who don't know this, manufacturer's coupons are reimbursed by the company for the amount plus 0.08 cents. Stores do not lose money on them.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Walgreens again....

Are you sensing a theme?

I usually go to Walgreen's about twice a week. Sometimes more, this month it has been about once a week. That is due to the complete and utter madness at CVS this month. I am there multiple times a week, sometimes multiple times a day. Explanations and tallies will be forthcoming soon, for now we will leave it at a lot of stuff and very little money spent. But on to tonight's topic, Walgreens.

Stopped in for a very specific list and did not stray much. Here's the list:

4 bottles - Theraflu Warming Liquid (like Nyquil) @ 3.99/ea
3 nighttime, 1 daytime
2 pks - Triaminic Thin Strips @ 4.99/ea
1 bx - Playtex Sport tampons @ 4.99
3 pks - Crayola Washable fine tip markers @0.99/ea (clearance)
I had the following:
1 - Instant value coupon for 3.00 off each Theraflu (total -12.00)
1 - Instant value coupon for 3.00 off each Triaminic (total - 6.00)
1 - 2.50 off Playtex tampons
4 - 1.00 off Theraflu
2 - 1.00 off Triaminic

Total before coupons - $33.90
Total coupon savings - $26.50
Total spent - $6.18
Total rebate coming back - $5.49
Total oop - $0.69

Bonus - received a coupon with my receipt (we call them catalinas) for a free 20ct box of tampax pearl tampons (up to 4.75) and a coupon for $2.00 off Vicks Babyrub.

I think tomorrow I might clean out the supply of markers. At 0.99 for crayolas, I can't lose.

Monday, October 09, 2006


Fall is my favorite season. It's not bone chilling cold or sweltering hot. It is cool and crisp. I love the fall. There is nothing better than a cool day with the sun shining. But fall comes with it's own set of issues. In addition to the 7 day a week grind between my job and the pumpkin farm, this is the time of year when I truly and deeply miss smoking.

For those of you who do not know, I used to be a smoker. I loved smoking. Anytime anyone asked me when I was going to quit, I would answer, "When I find out I am pregnant." You all know about Andrew, so you can safely assume that he is the reason I quit. It basically came down to being a woman of my word. I had to quit, or I would never live it down. Andrew's well being had a lot to do with it, but I knew that I would be harrassed if I didn't do it. We found out about Andrew on May 9, 2004 (Mother's Day) and by the 11th I was smoke free. It sounds terrible, but I finished my pack. Through my pregnancy, I didn't miss it. The smell of cigarettes made me ill. The preganancy really worked for me with this. I didn't have the cravings or the nicotine fits. The hormones masked that. But about 6 months after having Andrew, I started to feel the pull.

I am still a non-smoker 2 and a half years later, but everytime fall comes around, I truly miss it. I am determined not to go back. I don't want to have to go through quitting again with the next kid. I know that I am better off, but I miss it. I dream about it.

Sweet, sweet dreams of nicotine .

Friday, October 06, 2006

The All-Star Hot Dad Band

Listening to XM today and The Police are on. Hearing the Police always reminds me of the band I want to put together. As the title states, it's the All-Star Hot Dad Band. The older I get, the older the crushes and loves of my youth get. Some hold up, like Johnny Depp. Some do not, I am looking at you Corey Haim, yes you. Everyone gets older and some musicans fall apart, *ahem* Jani Lane. Some however acheive what I call "Hot Dad" status. He is in his mid-forties on up , but he still looks really good. Even better if they are weathering a little gray or glasses with style. The line-up is always in flux and we are always taking suggestions, but for now here is where we stand:

Drums - Stewart Copeland (this is why the Police triggers this train of thought)
Bass - Kip Winger (Seriously, he is the total package. looks, brains, sense of humor,talent)
Guitar - ???? I am still auditioning for this position. Warren DeMartini and Ty Tabor are in very serious contention, but I have not seen Warren on TV yet to make a determination.
Vocals/Guitar - Rick Springfield. (First record I ever bought, still have it. Working Class Dog on vinyl) under consideration: Paul Rodgers

I know you are all thinking, but Chris, how could you leave out your number one? The Red Rocker, Sammy Hagar. While I love Sammy and he is the same age as my dad (eh?), I do realize that it might be a personal taste issue and a lot of people might not agree with me. Plus he does not have the "hot dad" glasses that I love.

Your mileage may vary, you might think I am crazy, but that's my list. Ideas are always excepted and encouraged. I am also trying to work out the All Short Guys Band, with Ronnie Dio as front man, and the All Hot Redhead Guys band, because I have a thing for redheads.

So there you have it, the All-Star Hot Dad Band. They could have a standing engagement at my house anytime they want.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

More deals today

I ran to Walgreens tonight at 9:45, they close at 10:00. I wanted to take care of the P & G (Procter and Gamble) rebate this week, while the Infusium was still on sale. I also wanted to get some of the Nesquik on sale. I got:

4 Infusium Leave In treatment @ 5.00 ea.
4 Nesquik chocolate milk 16 oz @ 1.59 ea.
1 - 7-day coupon on Nesquik -3.18
4 - 0.50/1 Nesquik coupons -2.00
4 - 3.00/1 Infusium coupons -12.00

Total + tax = $10.71

Plus I get a $10 Walgreens Gift Card back and have 4 of 6 upcs I need on the Nesquik for the free T-shirt.

Net oop: $0.71

Bonus: the girl had trouble with one of my coupons for the Nesquik, she said the computer wouldn't take it. I was hunting for my debit card and wasn't really paying attention. She gave the coupon back to me. Walgreens ought to teach their employees to count. I realized when I got home, that she had alredy scanned it. That's why the register wouldn't take it. So, this weekend, I will have to see if Walgreens wants it back. If not, I can use it with another one I left at home to get the last 2 bottles I need for the T-shirt. It has the Quik rabbit on it, it is totally cute.

Counts and things

So the current toothpaste count is 38.

I know, it's a little nuts. I gave away 3 tubes at work the other day, otherwise it would have been 41. I have almost exhausted the clearance at many CVS stores. 1 or 2 more stops and I may be done with toothpaste for a while. We will see. I have other things to purchase this week, so it may be nice to be done with toothpaste.

My bathroom cabinet is being overrun and I need a new place for a stockpile. I may start using the top shelf of our big bathroom closet, but I have the feeling that I will run out of space soon. I am rolling though and most of this costs me little, if anything out of pocket (oop). You will see this term, so remember it.

Pay day at the pumpkin farm is Friday. So big hooray for that. I got paid for my hair care study on Tuesday. Although that means I won't be driving by the nice new CVS on Golf. Like I don't have enough of them to go to, but the people were nice. This means a lot when you spend 1.94 oop on 4 bottles of Pantene and 3 packs of Kotex. Sometimes, the cashiers act like you are stealing from them just for using coupons. I do love CVS, even the bad ones. I really wish they would build one in DeKalb.

It is nice to see the Christmas fund growing. $80 for the haircare study, 33 from the last pumpkin farm check, 15 from surveys, 20 from Pepsi for rebates, and 3 from Rayovac - rebate.

My Walgreens rebate for September is mailed in and I should receive $47 back from that. I may or may not use that and my stash of gift cards for Christmas.

Update: I stopped on the way home and picked up 4 more full size tubes of toothpaste, plus 4-3pks of trial size toothpaste. So, I guess that ups the previous count. ; )
I also got Andrew a really cute puzzle table for Christmas at Target on clearance for 8 dollars.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Pictures of Andrew

I figure that it is time to introduce you Andrew. He ruined a lot of my clothes (he was the spit up king and formula never comes out), made me quit smoking, tried to feed me poop and makes me laugh daily. We think he's pretty awesome. He is generally a happy little boy.

He is a cool dude.

This next picture is of him in his raincoat. We have had a lot of storms and rain in the last month and he is finally getting some use out it. I should let you know that he is not stoned, it is 5:45 am on a Friday morning and we are about to leave for the babysitter's. He is just half asleep.

Most people have a hard time believing me when I tell them about my 25 lb cat. He is huge!!! This next picture illustrates how much Andrew and Felix love to play, and just how giant my cat is. We joke that he is half cat/half black lab.

Most of the time it is a total blast being parents with a kid like Andrew. He has his moments, I mean come on, he's almost 2, but he is generally a great kid. We teach him weird things and everyone loves them, like...
What does a pirate say? Argh..... (He swings his arm like he's got a sword when he answers)
What does a zombie say? Brains!!! (He throws his arms in the air)

He does the normal ones. Lion, chicken, dog, cat...etc. But the odd ones are the most requested. He is obsessed with Bob the Builder and either basketball or baseball depending on the day.

So there you have it, that's Andrew.