This blog is a hodgepodge of things I want to share, from the good deals I find to my newfound cake decorating hobby and everything in between. Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

My First Great Deal!

I recently started couponing. I have been saving coupon inserts by week from the Chicago Tribune. Whenever I am ready to go to the grocery store, I search coupon database sites such as or read a local blog to find out what is on sale, and where I can find the coupons to match with the sales.

I have been saving a little bit of money, but nothing crazy. I kept reading that when something is on sale, and you have a coupon, you should stock up on it. I hadn’t come across anything great, until Monday. The blog I read informed me that Dominick’s had Goldfish crackers on sale buy 2 get 2 free. I also remembered that on my Dominick’s fresh values card I had a Just for U coupon for a free bag of Goldfish, and a special price of $1.63 whenever I bough Goldfish.

I figured, I could get 4 bags for $1.63. This is a great deal, since normally they are over $2 a bag, and I eat them almost every day for lunch. When I got to the store, I noticed an end cap with Cheddar Goldfish. The bags had a peelie for $.75 off when you buy one cheddar and one flavor goldfish. I wasn’t sure how much this would save me, but I knew it would be a really good deal if I bought 8 bags. The way I figured it:

Dominicks Receipt
8 bags at $2.39 is   $19.20
4 bags free (B2G2) -$9.56
1 bag free (J4U)     -$2.39
J4U my price          -$2.28
4 MFR coupons     -$3.00
                         =  $1.97

If you look at my receipt, there are three lines of goldfish, that add up to $2.00. I am not sure how the computer calculated it, but for some reason it came out 3 cents above what I thought it should be. I will not complain over 3 cents!

This is the first time I have been able to use my coupon “skills” to stock up on something, I am very happy with myself that I got 8 bags of goldfish for less than the cost of 1 regular priced bag! I now have enough goldfish for a few months, and hopefully they will be on sale again by then.

My Stockpile of Goldfish!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Month 6 (2011) - Chicken Kiev

In June, my husband decided to have me try chicken kiev. I wasn't sure how I would like it, but I went into it with an open mind. While at Dominick's, we picked out two types of kiev. We got broccoli cheese, and butter with spices. I liked the overall flavor of the butter kiev better, but the broccoli one was also really good. I would eat either one of them again, although the broccoli one was 2 less weight watcher points than the butter one so that would probably be the healthier choice!

While at Dominick's, we realized we needed to get something else to eat with the kiev. We looked at the pre-made pasta salads in the deli section and decided to try buffalo chicken pasta salad. It was OK. The flavor of the sauce, chicken and pasta was really good, but I didn't like the texture of the celery that was mixed in, or the flavor of the blue cheese. I don't think I would buy this again, but I can see how people who like blue cheese would love this salad.

Butter with spices kiev, broccoli cheese kiev, buffalo chicken pasta salad
I give this meal a 7 out of 10.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Toy Story Cupcakes - "The Claw"

My nephew is having a Toy Story themed 2nd birthday party, so my sister-in-law asked me to create some cupcakes to look like the "claw aliens". I used a blue cupcake wrapper and died the cake mix blue (since the aliens wear blue suits.) I created ears and the antenna out of gum paste. For the ears, I used a leaf cut out and shaped them to look like alien ears. I used homemade butter-cream died "alien green", then added butter-cream eyes and a mouth with a round Wilton tip.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Month 5 (2011) - Fish

Ok, so I know I didn't technically eat any fish in May. We were planning on it, but May turned out to be a really busy month for us, so today was the earliest we could get around to it! 

We wanted to go out for fish. Having never cooked it at home, I was a little worried about how it would turn out, so we went to Bonefish Grill.

To start out, we ordered the Bang Bang shrimp, tender, crispy shrimp tossed in a creamy, spicy sauce. It was amazing. One if the best shrimp appetizers I have ever tried. I would definitely get this again, it was perfect for two people to share.

Next, we had ceasar salad. The other couple we were with ordered anchovies on their salad, and they convinced me to try one. I figured, since it is my day to try fish, I might as well try an anchovy. Surprisingly, I didn't hate it. I mean, I wouldn't order it on my own, but it wasn't horrible, all I could really taste was salt with a slight "fishy" taste.

For an entrĂ©e, I ordered Chilean Sea Bass. The texture was good, and it had a nice clean taste to it. It wasn't "fishy" at all. The restaurant Web site says "This rich, melt-in-your-mouth fish is tender, buttery, and moist with large, thick flakes." That pretty much describes it. To top it off, I had warm mango salsa. It complimented the sea bass wonderfully. With steamed broccoli as a side, it was the perfect amount of food, and very healthy also. 

Overall, I really enjoyed the fish. I would definitely eat this again, and I would go to Bonefish Grill again. This has been one of the better months for tasting new foods.

Bang Bang Shirmp, Anchoy, Chilean Sea Bass

 I give this meal a 9 out of 10.