Thursday, June 30, 2011

Animal Kingdom: Part 1

 Honestly, out of all the Disney parks here in Florida, Animal Kingdom is my least favorite. It is still a great time and a must see at least once in your life, but out of the four park options, I would pick this one last. The reason why is because it is extremely muggy and hot due to all the water, animals, and trees. So if you do go to this park, the best time of the year is Spring or Fall.

To continue, the park can be divided into seven sections as mentioned on the official Animal Kingdom Disney website. In this post I will review two of them as thoroughly as possible.

Section #1: Oasis & Safari Village

Park Entrance & Ticket Center
 As soon as you enter Animal Kingdom and pass through the ticket section, you immediately encounter Oasis, the Rainforest Cafe, and Garden Gate Gifts. Oasis is the only part of the park that I think most resembles a zoo. You walk around the trails while viewing various animals and plant life.

Nothing very special, but there are tons of nice spots for pretty pictures. Once you come out of Oasis you hit the center of the entire park called Safari Village and you should be facing the Tree of Life.

The Tree of Life itself is in the Discovery Island section of the park.
Safari Village is a great place to shop for souvenirs, specifically the Beastly Bazaar.

In the Beastly Bazaar you can find unique Disney items such as Disney themed kitchen wares, Christmas decor, and gourmet candies and sweets. I almost bought some of the kitchen items. That says a lot because living 20 minutes from Disney, nothing they can do really surprises me.

Section #2: Discovery Island

The area around the Tree of Life is called Discovery Island. The "It's Tough to be a Bug" 3D show is biggest attraction in this area and is located inside the Tree of Life. As your standing in line you get an up close view of the tree and all the cool animal carvings that create the Tree of Life.

Waiting in line for the "It's Tough to be a Bug" show.
There really is nothing more to Discovery Island except for the Discovery Island Kids Club and more trails to view animals and plant life. There are 6 kids clubs spread out throughout Animal Kingdom. When you visit one of the clubs you get a stamp. If you collect all 6 stamps you get a "bonus". What this bonus is I have no idea. If someone knows please comment.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Free Herbal Essence & Aussie

Click the "like" button on the Aussie or Herbal Essences Facebook pages for a coupon for FREE full size products. Just fill out the information and thecoupon will be mailed to you in 4-6 weeks.

Hurry though because it is a limited to a certain amount of people. Click below to visit their Facebook page:

Herbal Essences


Saturday, June 25, 2011

Free Neti Pot

Go to the facebook page for "NeilMed Neti Pot" and click their like button. Then you will be prompted to a short survey/quiz based upon some questions they have posted. It is so easy.

Neti Pots are used by people with allergies and I believe other sinus irritations. So even if you don't suffer from allergies you probably know someone who does.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Free Photo Book at Walgreens

Right now on the Walgreen's website order a 20 page 4.5x6 photo book for free by typing in the code BRAG when you check out. I just had to pay shipping and taxes but still, I was able to fit over 60 images in my book. So if you have some time to play around with all the layouts and design options, it is definitely worth it.

This coupon code expires Saturday June 25th 2011.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Deals This Week

There are always lots of sales going on but I only list the ones I think cannot be missed.

CVS 6/19 to 6/25

If you have some $1 off one Colgate 360 degrees toothbrush from the May or July issues of AllYou magazine, now is the time to use it. These toothbrushes are on sale for $2.79 plus you get $2 extra care bucks (ECB) back making the toothbrush $0.79. Use this coupon and you get it for free plus $0.21 overage. Some of the Colgate toothpastes are also on sale under this same deal. Coupons for the toothpaste were in the May issue of AllYou magazine.

If you have the $1 off L.A. Looks gel coupon found in the May 15th edition of Smart Source you can get FREE hair gel. It is priced at $2.99 but you get back $2 ECB dropping the price to $0.99. With the $1 coupon it is free.
Free Beverages :
Also a few weeks ago if you clicked the like button on Lipton's iced tea facebook you were able to print a maximum of 2 coupons for a FREE 20oz 100% natural Lipton iced tea bottled drink. I was able to get a hold of 4 of these coupons. This week at CVS if you buy 4 iced tea bottles for $5 you got back $1 ECB. So I ended up getting all 4 bottles for free, I just had to pay $0.67 worth of taxes. But since I got a $1 ECB back I actually made $0.33 off from this transaction. 

Furthermore, in the June 5th 2011 edition of Smart Source there were some coupons for a FREE Seattle's Best coffee can. Of these I had 3 coupons.

There is a pretty good deal on General Mills cereals at CVS too. They are 2 for $3 if you find the very common General Mills coupon for $1 off 2 cereal boxes (or $1.50 each). You can find these easily online and in several coupon inserts. There were some in the June 19th edition of Smart Source.

Lastly, if you have not got the green bag tag at CVS then get it as soon as possible. You scan it just like you would your CVS card every time you make a purchase. For every four scans you get a $1 ECB. This goes by quick for me because I buy each item/deal separately so I can keep track if my coupons and everything else were scanned correctly. I go into every store knowing how much each transaction should cost including taxes because trust me, things always get messed up. So for example with the Lipton iced tea and the Seattle's Best coffee, I would buy the tea in one transaction and the coffee in another. The green leaf tag costs $0.99 but it will repay itself many times. It is located in the reusable bag section of CVS or at the check out counter.

Walgreens 6/19-6/25

In the May issue of AllYou magazine, and the May 8th 2011 Smart Source you can find $1 off Finesse Clean + Simple products. You need 2 of these coupons to get this product for FREE. This week you get $5 register rewards when you buy two bottles of this product at $3.50 each. This comes out to $7 for the bottles, minus the $5 register reward and your $2 worth of coupons (use one $1 off manufacturers coupon on each bottle) and you get both bottles for FREE.

Or if you find Finesse bottles with the "Try Me Free" rebate stickers you can get them for free if you decide to wait.

Publix: New Coupon Booklets

There are some relatively new coupon booklets to be found in Publix so stock up while you can find them. Don't be afraid to ask customer service if they can help you find any copies (especially for the Smart Savings booklet), if you cant find any in the store's "rotating flyer shelf".  

This Smart Savings booklet was not easy to find, at least for me.

And there is a new Yellow Advantage flyer (it came out June 18th) so make sure you throw out your old one and stock up on the new.

Today at Publix I spotted some Eight O'Clock coffee bags with the same "Get a free box of Milano cookies" when you buy the coffee peelies that I had mentioned about a really long time ago in another post. So just keep an eye out for when the coffee goes on sale again at Publix and stock up on any coupons for Eight O'Clock coffee.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Party Food on a Budget

My husbands birthday is coming up next month so I've all ready started stocking up on food and beverage items.

The theme of the food will be Italian. Everyone loves pasta and it is easy to make. I plan on making a "pasta bar" very similar in idea to one of my previous post about the taco bar. I plan to make my stuffed meatballs and home made Alfredo sauce recipes which have also been posted on this blog.

Since I have been couponing for quite a while I pretty much have all the pasta I could ever need. Pasta goes on sale at some store or another almost every week. Pasta sauces on the other hand are a little bit more difficult. I know a sale should appear anytime within now and the party date.

So, I plan on having a red tomato based sauce and an Alfredo sauce as the sauce options. For meat options, I plan on making the stuffed meatballs and grilled chicken breasts. Aldi sells chicken breast tenderloins which are sliced and ready to grill. They cook up in less than 10 minutes and I use them in practically every dish that calls for chicken breast.

For the condiments I plan on chopping up fresh basil, shredding up some mozzarella cheese, cooking some white mushrooms, dicing artichoke, and getting some grated Parmesan. That is all that I can think of condiment wise. If anyone else has ideas for Italian condiments please let me know.

Lastly, I need a couple bags of salad, multiple salad dressing options, and garlic or cheese bread. These items are not on sale this week but hopefully in a month I can score some great deals.

This week I started taking advantage of some of the sales going on at publix.

Crystal Lite drink mixes are sale at Publix buy one get one free for $3.99 plus there were some $1 off manufactures coupons in the June 12th edition of Smart Source. I can use two of these coupons dropping the price down to $1.99 for both. I could make a total of 24 quarts of juice with this deal (using both containers). I plan on enhancing the crystal lite possibly with some lime flavored soda, pureed strawberries, or maybe adding fruit cocktail mix into it like some people do with party punch.

As for the cake, I love to make cakes using cake mix. I under cook the cake slightly so it stays nice and moist. It so happens that this week Publix has Duncan Hines cake mixes buy one get one free for $1.83. Duncan Hines frosting is on sale for $1.29 each. Plus I have three manufactures coupons for 1 free Duncan Hines cake mix with the purchase of 2 Duncan Hines products. So I will be getting 5 boxes of cake mix and 4 jars of frosting for $6.99.

My plan is to make one round cake with the theme of the party (to be discussed in a future post), surrounded by cupcakes. Total cost thus far $8.98 worth in items stated above  + an estimated 4 boxes of pasta I bought at $0.14 each = $9.54 spent on food for a party of 50 thus far.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Grab It Now

Free Dial bodywash plus overage

Right now until Wednesday or Thursday depending on your local Publix sales flyer, all Dial body washes are buy one get one free for $3.91. If you got the last edition of Smart Source from Sunday June 12th, there are $2 of Dial body washes in them. If you can manage to get two of these coupons and use one on each bottle of Dial body wash: $3.91 - (2x$2) = -$0.09. You actually make $0.09 from this transaction.

Free 20oz Lipton 100% Natural Iced Tea 
To get this coupon click here. I was able to print 2 of them. I'm just having a hard time finding somewhere that has it in stock. Tomorrow I'm going to try a few gas stations. My local CVS and Walgreens has been out of it for many days.

Coupon Giveaways
Right now there are some great coupon offers being mailed out to those who sign up. Sign up quickly because they will run out.

Click here for $10 in Bounce coupons

Click here for Publix's Shopping Spree Coupons

I can't wait to get these coupons in the mail and see what is included.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Stuffed Meatballs

This is my own creation. If you do not like tomatoes then replace it with cheese. But I do warn you, tomatoes are very juicy and add significantly to the juiciness and flavor of the resulting meatballs.

Ingredients for the Meatballs:

2lbs 85/15 ground beef. If you want to take this up a notch try 1 lb of ground beef and 1lb of ground pork. The end result is a very smooth textured meatball with a unique flavor.

3 tbs low sodium soy sauce

1 tsp dried Italian herb seasonings

1 tsp garlic salt

1/4 cup of extra fine Italian style bread crumbs

2 eggs

Ingredients for the Stuffing:

2 Roma tomatoes chopped up into very small bits

1/4 cup of finely shredded cheese, such as mozzarella or an Italian blend

2 tsp of fresh chopped basil. If you don't have it fresh then use 1.5 tsp of the dried version, but of course fresh is way better.

2 boxes of pasta
2 jars of the pasta sauce of your choice

I leave the amount of pasta and sauce to use up to you. This recipe definitely makes enough meatballs for a family of four and then some.


Start boiling water to cook the pasta. Cook the pasta as directed on the box.  Take the ground beef and add all the ingredients listed for the meatballs. Mix it all together very thoroughly.

Next, start chopping the Roma tomatoes and add in the other ingredients for the stuffing.

To start forming the meatballs, I took enough meat to fit into my fist and rolled it into a smooth ball. I continued this until I had all the meatballs formed and distributed the meat as even as possible. I was able to make 15 meatballs. Once they were all formed I poked a hole into them.

Then I took an estimated 1/2 tsp of the stuffing and put it into the hole.

Then I pinched the hole shut.

Place the meatballs on a glass 13x9 baking dish (sprayed with nonstick cooking spray), with the hole side facing up. Cook the meatballs in the oven at 350 degrees for 30-45 minutes or until cooked though and browned.

By this time the pasta should be done. Drain it and set aside.

Once the meatballs are cooked, take them out of the oven. Take a large pot and add the 2 jars of pasta sauce to it. Set the heat to medium. Use a slotted spoon to remove each meatball from the glass baking dish (wiggle slightly so that any grease or fat can drip off), and add it to the pasta sauce. Cook it together for about 5 minutes just to heat up the sauce.

I serve my pasta and meatballs with a huge serving of vegetables.


Monday, June 6, 2011

Grab These Deals Now

There are a lot of great deals going on this week. Below are the ones that I consider the best and hard to beat. Stock up on this items if you can.


Colgate MaxClean toothpaste and other "Max" varieties on sale for $2.79 and get back $2 ExtraCare Bucks (ECB). That makes your total $0.79. Plus get an additional $0.75 off if you have the $0.75 manufacturers coupon found in the smartsaver or redplum (I cant remember which) from last Sunday June 6th newspapers. Your total comes out to $0.04 cents for the toothpaste.

Some of the Colgate toothbrushes are under the same exact deal. There is also a $0.75 off manufacturers coupon found in last Sundays coupon inserts making the toothbrushes $0.04 also.

This deal is limited to 2 per CVS card holder. 1 toothpaste and 1 toothbrush count as 2 since they are under the same deal. So I got my husband a CVS card too and I was able to get 2 toothbrushes and 2 toothpastes.

Crest Pro Health 1 liter mouth rinses on sale for $4.50 plus get $2 ECB making it $2. In last Sunday's newspapers you should have received the highly anticipated Proctor and Gamble insert which has a $2 off coupon for this mouth rinse making this item FREE. This deal is also limited to 2.


My favorite Bic Soliel razors were on sale for $6.99 plus get back  $3 register rewards (RR). I also had a $3 off manufactures coupon making this 4 pack of razors $0.99.

The sale on Gillette Pro Fusion Glide Razors is still on going. The razor costs $9.89, plus you get back $5 RR making it come to $4.89. If you were able to get a hold of the May Proctor and Gamble insert or the new one that just came out for June, there are $4 off manufacturers coupons off this razor making your total $0.89.


Once again the Ronzoni pasta Healthy Harvest and Garden Delight are buy one get one free at $1.85 for 2. Visit the Ronzoni website to print $1 off 2 coupons, making your total $0.85 for two boxes, or  $0.43 each.

There are also tons of John Frieda coupons floating around. They range from $5 to $2 off. Right now Publix also has a $2 off John Frieda products sale. I believe one of the John Frieda repair treatment products is around $5 to $5.99. Pair this deal with the $5 off John Frieda repair treatment coupon ($2 Publix sale + $5 coupon = $7 off) found in the inserts from last Sunday and you should actually be making some money from this transaction. I went to one Publix today and they were completely out of this product so good luck.


There is a sale on Suave Lotions at $2.69. Pair this up with the buy one get one free manufacturers coupons from the May 22 redplum, $1 off 1 manufacturers coupon also found in the May 22 redplum, and the $0.75 off target coupon printed from their website and you can get 2 body lotions for $0.47 each.