Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Wags Freebies & more

Hi everyone

I apologise for my lack of posts, but I currently have a lot on my plate. I just wanted to share this week's Wags freebies, so some of you can take advantage of the deals too. Prices are just shocking everywhere! I hit up a bunch of stores today and was shocked by how prices have increased since my last visit. I'm back in stocking up mode. At least, I think so. I'm a little on the fence about stocking up. We've used quite a bit of pantry items and I need to replenish select non perishables. I'm considering just paying for things now, before the prices increase yet again.  I'd rather spend the money now, than wait until I need the item and pay a fortune for it. I call it my 'long term savings' On the other hand, we're still in decent shape so I'm not sure if I should add anything or not. There's been chatter about shortages again and I will admit that I've seen shortages on select items at the grocery store. What to do.

On to Wags: 

Trans 1

3 x Oral b t/b $12.00

2 x Olay wipes 10.00

Less Oral b DQ (6.00)

Less Olay DQ (8.00)

Tax 1.32

OOP $9.32

Earned $9 ($4 Oral b, $5 WYS $20)

Trans 2

2 x Garnier shampoo $7.00

2 x Colgate t/p 5.98

2 x Colgate t/p 7.98

Less Garnier DQ (3.00)

Less Colgate DQ (3.00)

Less WC rewards (10.00)

Tax 1.26

OOP $6.22

Earned $11 ($4 Garnier, $3 Colgate, $4 Colgate) + $4 Colgate (see below). Total earned $15.

You already know things didn't work out as expected, I'm not sure if the Oral b/Crest deal was pulled, but it's been reported that it prints 2 RRs ($4 & $5), which would make it a nice MM. I tried 2 different types of toothbrushes (one on each account, but only received $4 RR) I guess it's a dead deal by now.  It was worth a try though.

In the 2nd transaction, only one of my Colgate DQs deducted. I contacted CS when I got home and they added $4 WC to my account. 

Trans 3 (DH account)

3 x Oral b t/b $12.00

2 x Olay wipes 10.00

2 x Colgate t/p 5.98

Less Oral b DQ (6.00)

Less Olay DQ (8.00)

Less Colgate DQ (3.00)

Less WC (10.00)

Tax 1.68

OOP : $2.66

Earned $7 ($4 Oral b, $3 Colgate)

Trans 4 (DH account)

2 x Garnier $7.00

2 x Colgate t/p 7.98

Less Garnier DQ(3.00)

Less Colgate DQ (4.00)

Less WC (5.00)

Tax 0.90

OOP $3.88

Earned $8 ($4 Garnier, $4 Colgate)

DH didn't have any booster, so I switched things up to use some WC. He also didn't have much WC, so I could only use $5 on the 4th transaction. 

Colgate (2 different deals) & Garnier are all FREE after rewards this week. 

Olay wipes are $1.00 each after DQ (Q expires Saturday)

Oral b/Crest are $3/3 after rewards

I might get more Garnier & Colgate, because I have a Garnier paper Q and my Colgate DQ (the one that didn't deduct) is still available online. 

So how did I do overall?

Number of items purchased : 22

OOP : $22.08

Retail value : $105.78

Coupons used : $44.00 (all digitals)

Rewards used : $25.00

Rewards earned : $39.00

I count my rewards when I spend it (it just makes better sense), but if you look at the numbers you'll see that I earned an extra $14 rewards (spent $25, earned $39). That makes up for that $22 OOP. If you figure in the sales tax (I hate sales tax. Why can't we just switch to VAT?) of $5.16, you'll see that I basically paid $2.92 for 22 items. 

Wags gave me 2 new boosters $9 WYS $40, $10 WYS $50. I might be able to double dip if the deals & DQs are good next week. I have a bunch of RRs to combine with that deal (can't pay with WC), so I might be able to figure something out. Although only 2 of the RRs are Man Qs. This complicates things. 

In other news. Does anyone calculate unit cost? This is something I've always done and I'm so glad I did. We are out of soda and I've been keeping an eye out for a decent sale. I saw that Target has a soda sale this week, but their price was still too high for me. So I did what I do best - compared prices online. I'm so glad I did, because I saw that Meijer has 24pks for $7.49 this week. Hooray! I have a $1.25 mailer Q, which would make it $6.24 for me. When I got to Meijer, I noticed that the soda is part of the Spend 5 save $5 sale, so it was actually $6.49 for a 24 pk. I bought 2 cases. One cost me $5.24 after Q. That's the lowest price I've seen in a very long time, so it made sense to just buy 2. I also added some Kraft salad dressing to get me to 5 items, because guess who ran out of dressing - gasp! It's so weird for me to run out of things, because I usually keep track of things.  I always make sure that we have everything we need in stock. 

Then I went to Sams and saw that a 36ct soda is $12.49!!!! Holy cannoli! Who pays that price? I just paid $11.73 for 48 cans. Not everything is cheaper at the warehouse clubs. But people just grab things without blinking. 2 Weeks ago, they had 2 x 18ct eggs for $10.xx. I kid you not! I saw people just placing eggs into their carts, without being shocked by the price. This didn't make sense to me, because I was at Walmart prior to that and a dozen eggs was $2.22. Scratching my head at this weird math. I know that not everyone can crunch numbers or spot the difference in price, but pull out your smartphone and use that calculator to do the math. You'll be surprised to learn how much stores are ripping us off. Just think of how much money some people are throwing away by just paying those high prices. 

I also needed some gravy at Meijer. Heinz is my preferred brand and has been really hard to come by the past 2 years. So I decided to stock up a bit, cause I use it for meat pies. As I was grabbing the gravy, I noticed the Value size jars (18 oz) for $2.39. The regular 12 oz size, was $1.99. I needed no 2nd invitation to pick up the larger jars instead. I'm getting an extra 50% for just 40c more! It's not my preferred flavor, but I can work with it.  

The one thing I love, is that Sams produce lasts for a long time in the fridge - especially their strawberries and mushrooms. I stocked up on strawberries when Kroger had it on sale 2 weeks ago. Sad to say, they didn't all stay super fresh, so I've been cutting away the bad pieces and using the leftovers in smoothies. The Sams strawberries last more than 3 weeks in the fridge. I do line my produce drawers with paper towel, so that helps prolong the life of produce. I learned about wrapping select produce in p/t to prolong it's lifespan, but I didn't want to play the guessing game of what's wrapped in the towels, so I decided to just line the drawers with p/t instead and it works!  (I've been doing it for years)

The other thing I love about Sams produce is that most of it is prepackaged, so everybody and their mother don't get to touch the food. That works great for this germaphobe. I wash all food items before use, including meat. I'm extremely picky about what goes into my body. The Sams prices are also much lower that Costco. I learned that the hard way last week. I was at Costco for a few things and figured I'd skip Sams and just buy some salad fixings at Costco. Big mistake. Every single item was at least $1 more than Sams prices. 

Look at these tomatoes from Sams. They cost $4.xx for 3 lbs.  I normally pay that much for about 4 tomatoes at the grocery store. No thanks. Sams works for me for select items. I've been making fresh pico every week and it is so good! I knew that my Sams membership was expiring, but I didn't know that it was already expired, so today was a bit pricier than usual. The downside is, my Costco membership is expiring soon too. I'm not mad at Sams. Their membership is $15 less than Costco's and their prices are much lower. However, I can sometimes find good deals at Costco, that's not at Sams, like my D Donuts coffee I stocked up on at Costco last year. 

Aldi is another store that's not the cheapest. I saw 10 oz Down Unstopables for $7.49 at Aldi. I paid $15.49 for 37.5 oz at Sams. I've noticed that their Lacroix is expensive too. Yes, I comparison shop. Funny thing is that I used to hate it when my mother did that. Us kids hated going to shopping with her, because she'd drag us to different grocery stores (at the shopping mall) to get the lowest prices. But that's not the worst part. She'd stop and talk to half the people on the way (I mentioned before that I'm from a well known family, so we couldn't just ignore anyone out in public), while we were loaded down with grocery bags. I don't do that to my guys. I make my list, get in my car, then hit a bunch of stores. Easy peasy. Well, I have to say that my mother was a savvy shopper, despite the internet not existing back then. I learned a lot from her. 

So there you have it folks. Save wherever you can. I buy the bulk of our HBA at the drugstores, because it costs so much less. This allows us to spend a little more on food items. 

Thursday, May 12, 2022

Three Cheers for Wags!


You all know it's rare for things to go smoothly at Wags. I woke up feeling really rotten yesterday - sniffles, scratchy throat & fatigue. I just wanted to go crawl back into bed. I had $14 RRs expiring and thought to just let it expire. I took some Robitussen and started feeling better as the day progressed. Made my shopping list and headed to Wags. Here's what I got.

2 x Downy $4.50

2 x Tide Simply 4.50 (Tide/Downy are 4/$9 this week)

1 x Loreal age perfect 19.99

1 x Loreal Revitalift B1G50% off 2nd 8.99

2 x Colgate t/p 7.98

1 x Bic razor 6.29

Less Loreal DQ (8.00)

Less Colgate DQ (4.00)

Less Bic DQ (4.00)

Less RRs (14.00)

Less WC points (20.00)

Tax 3.14

OOP $5.39

Earned $10 WC ($6 WYS $22, $4 Colgate)

I keep forgetting to use that $1.60 Wags GC I received for a previous return. I should stick it in my wallet so I don't forget. I opened my last Loreal moisturiser about 2 weeks ago. I could've bought 2 age perfect, but it didn't have enough inventory when I added it to my cart online. The store had enough inventory when I was there (imagine that), but I wasn't going to mess with anything and NOT have the $8 DQ deduct. This is Wags after  I was going to buy the Loreal online and do store pickup, because Rakuten has 15% cash back, but that was only an extra $1.xx savings in my pocket and it would mean I'd have to make another trip to Wags. They only have your items ready hours after you've placed order or sometimes things get cancelled. 

I didn't need any of the other items, but needed to use those RRs. I'll submit my receipt to Fetch & PG. 

Number of items purchased : 9

OOP : $5.39

Retail value : $81.81

Coupons used : $16.00

Rewards used : $34.00

Rewards earned : $10.00

I spent down a bunch of rewards, but that's what it's there for, right? It's so I don't have to spend a pile of my own money on my purchases. Is it just me or do those detergent bottles just keep shrinking in size? 31 oz!! WTH?!! And does anyone really pay $6.99 for it at the drugstores? What a rip off! I remember when the small detergent bottles were 50 oz. Then it decreased to 40 oz. What's next? They're gonna reduce it to those mini 9 oz (or is it 7 oz now?) Dawn bottle sizes? This is another reason why I'll keep playing the drugstore game. I'll use all their rewards to get what we need for a fraction of the cost. No way am I overpaying for convenience. 

I'm glad I opted to go shop. The weather's beautiful and I enjoyed getting outdoors after being sick & stuck in bed for so long. CVS sent me a $8/40 Q, but I didn't feel like working out a deal. I'll see if they send me another one next week. 

Have a great day everyone!

Monday, May 9, 2022

Meal Plan Monday

Hi everyone

I'm still sick. I'm actually feeling a lot better than before (I'm eating again and have very little cold/flu symptoms), but I have lots of fatigue, which makes me think I might have Covid... again. Sigh. I'm functioning and tried hard to not take a nap today, but was completely worn out by 12:30. The last time I had covid, I had fatigue for 3 weeks. I sure hope it's not the case this time. I'm over this crap now. I hate being sick! I just want to feel better now & get on with my life. 

Yesterday, I had DH drive me to Meijer for some berries & oranges. I especially went there for blueberries that's on sale this week, but there wasn't even shelf space for blueberries. WTH Meijer?! Then got carry out at Red Robin and back to bed. I did manage to do some cooking yesterday though. I baked bran apple muffins, roasted brussel sprouts, zucchini, colored peppers & potatoes in the oven. I went to the produce market & Sams on Friday and was completely wiped out before leaving the Sams parking lot. Yikes on grocery prices! I spent a little over $200 between the 2 stores. The market prices were crazy, so I opted to buy a few produce items at Sams and Meijer. I had $45 gcs for Sams, but when I checked out, the IGC gc wouldn't scan. Register kept telling me 'item can't be found'. Ugh. I'll try the gc ($25) at Walmart next time. I don't need anything until maybe next week. Big maybe, cause I loaded up on produce. So here's what we're eating this week.

Monday : Steak, onions, peppers, mashed potatoes, gravy, roasted veggies

Tuesday : Baked chicken tenders, potato salad, carrot/pineapple salad, brussel sprouts

Wednesday : Same as Monday

Thursday : Same as Tuesday

Friday : Hamburgers or chicken burgers, potato salad, baked beans

Saturday/Sunday : Dinner out or carry out - depends on how I feel

I also want to make some pico de gallo. We have lots of tortilla chips and I have a pico snack I like to make. I also have lots of pasta that needs to be used, so I'm thinking pesto pasta salad with chicken. Sams didn't have any non GMO chicken breasts, so I picked up the tenders. When I wanted to marinade the tenders last night, I couldn't find the BBQ sauce. I was pretty sure I still had BBQ sauce. This was after I had been to Meijer. Ugh. If I can't find BBQ sauce later, then I'm just gonna use BWW sauce (I have lots of that) and call it a day. 

I'm gonna attempt to do some ironing later. I have 2 baskets piled high Thankfully, I'm caught up on laundry and have everything folded & packed away. I even washed all the bedding. I've done zero work though. I need to get my act together tomorrow. 

Have a wonderful week everyone!

Wednesday, May 4, 2022

Fajita chicken recipe

Kay, please accept my sincerest apologies. I'm still sick. I've been in bed since Sunday and am still very sick. I know I don't have Covid. Feels like a bad case of the flu, but I'm beginning to think I have bronchitis. At this point I don't even know and I don't have the energy to go see a Dr. All I know is that it's rough. It's been years since I've been this sick. Mask mandates have been lifted, so DS comes home from school with the sniffles & I end up as sick as can be. Yep, been there before. I just sleep most of the day, then toss & turn half the night because my body hurts all over. I'm not eating either. I can't stomach food. I'm living on Canada Dry & DS's drinking yogurt. I've lost 5 lbs in 4 days. Not good for someone my size. I make a pot of coffee every morning, can't wait to have a cup once I smell the coffee brewing, then 5 minutes later, I don't want to have anything to do with it. Nope, I'm not pregnant either. Zero chance of that. The house needs a good clean. Everything's piled up and it's driving me crazy, but I just don't have the energy to do anything. I've even run out of clean pjs. Oy vey, this coming from the laundry nut (yes, I love doing laundry. I like everything clean & fresh. I hate ironing though).  I shower twice a day and grab a fresh sleep shirt every time. Well, I ran out of sleep shirts, because I was waiting on a full load before washing all our pjs. Thankfully I still have 2 piece sets from over a decade ago (don't know why I'm holding on to it, but it sure came in handy). So I just grabbed the tops to sleep in (TMI). I don't like the restrictions of sleeping with a long pants. I did wash the pjs today, so I can sleep comfortably again. I've only been online to print shipping labels for orders. Pack mail, leave it for my mail carrier & head right back to bed. 

Meal planning's gone out the window. DS is happy to have Red Robin tonight. We need fresh produce, so I need to make a Sams & market run. I had DH pick up bag salad, carrots and bananas at Aldi. Then I didn't have the energy to cook the carrots, so that was a moot point. The salad came in handy though.

Kay, I really can't remember the link to my fajita recipe. My friend posted it on facebook years ago and I never bothered to print it, so I'm just going to type what I have in my head. You can amend the spice ratio to suit your taste (that's what I usually do, since we love the heat).

Chicken breasts (I'd say about 2 lbs)

2 tbs Paprika

2 tbs Cumin

1 tbs Chilli powder

2 tsp Coriander powder

Salt  to taste

Sliced colored peppers

Sliced onions

Fresh garlic

Fresh lime 

Fresh cilantro

Olive oil

Mix all spices together. Coat chicken with fresh garlic and 3/4 spice mix. Place chicken on a baking sheet and add peppers and onions around the perimeter of sheet. Sprinkle leftover seasoning over onions/peppers too. Drizzle olive oil over chicken and veggies and bake at 400 degrees for about 30-35 minutes (cook times may vary depending on your oven and thickness of chicken). Once chicken is completely baked, remove from oven and squeeze fresh lime juice over everything and top with fresh chopped cilantro. Serve with tortillas and sides of choice.

You can also cut your chicken breasts into strips before baking and adjust the cook time to about 20-25 minutes.

I've started making my chicken in the instant pot. Add chicken (you can use frozen chicken too. no need to thaw), cover with seasoning and pressure cook for 20 minutes. Then add onions, peppers, garlic and more seasoning and cook for another 15 minutes. This way the veggies don't get cooked to a pulp. The meat is so tender, you just have to use a fork to lightly shred it.  Then top with fresh lime juice & cilantro. I prefer the instant pot ones, because it's so easy to use for all kinds of mexican dishes, especially quesadillas. 

I'm off to bed again. I'll respond to comments once I feel better. 

Happy Cinco de Mayo. Have a great week everyone!

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