Coupon Workshop 9/25

Are you intimidated, yet awe-struck, by the show, “Extreme Couponing?” Don’t be fooled into thinking that you have to spend 40 hours a week and devote an entire room of your house to your stockpile! The truth is, I can teach you how to invest just a few hours a week to help save your family time, stress, and money. I like to call it “Practical Couponing!”

 This two and a half hour workshop will provide you with all of the infor…mation you need to hit the ground running and start saving NOW with proven coupon strategies! This is a small workshop, limited to five participants. You will learn how to use coupons to immediately begin saving $200-$300 per month, or more! Unlike a class or seminar, you will have a chance to practice the coupon strategies and get all of your questions answered.

Only $45! Satisfaction Guaranteed!

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Includes a FREE copy of Christine’s new e-book, “Confessions of a Coupon Queen”!

WORKSHOP IS LIMITED TO THE FIRST 5 PAYING REGISTRATIONS!

Here’s what participants are saying about the workshop:

 We saved $57 on our food bill the first week after taking your class. That was a 31% savings on all name brand products. Mary has a goal of saving 50% by the end of the month. Just at 30% that equals $2,964.00 per year! Who can’t benefit from that? Christine, thank you! ~ Herb & Mary Johnson

 

Call (859) 912-2736  or email Christine Luken at strongtower.christine@gmail.com to reserve your spot!

Coupon Workshop 9/13

Are you intimidated, yet awe-struck, by the show, “Extreme Couponing?” Don’t be fooled into thinking that you have to spend 40 hours a week and devote an entire room of your house to your stockpile! The truth is, I can teach you how to invest just a few hours a week to help save your family time, stress, and money. I like to call it “Practical Couponing!”

 This two and a half hour workshop will provide you with all of the infor…mation you need to hit the ground running and start saving NOW with proven coupon strategies! This is a small workshop, limited to five participants. You will learn how to use coupons to immediately begin saving $200-$300 per month, or more! Unlike a class or seminar, you will have a chance to practice the coupon strategies and get all of your questions answered.

Only $45! Satisfaction Guaranteed!

Looks like you have entered a product ID (6) in the shortcode that doesn't exist. Please check your product ID and the shortcode again!

Includes a FREE copy of Christine’s new e-book, “Confessions of a Coupon Queen”!

WORKSHOP IS LIMITED TO THE FIRST 5 PAYING REGISTRATIONS!

Here’s what participants are saying about the workshop:

 We saved $57 on our food bill the first week after taking your class. That was a 31% savings on all name brand products. Mary has a goal of saving 50% by the end of the month. Just at 30% that equals $2,964.00 per year! Who can’t benefit from that? Christine, thank you! ~ Herb & Mary Johnson

 

Call (859) 912-2736  or email Christine Luken at strongtower.christine@gmail.com to reserve your spot!

Meal Planning Monday ~ Tasty Tomatoes

 

 

               I am so excited because the tomatoes in our garden are finally ripening!  We had a very wet, cool spring here in the Cincinnati area, which seems to have delayed my personal tomato crop by several weeks.  My husband first decided to start growing tomatoes two years ago declaring store-bought ones to be tasteless and overpriced, and he was right (but don’t tell him I said so.) 

            Some people think growing tomatoes is hard and time-consuming.  However, in my experience, it’s relatively easy to do.  We planted our tomatoes in our existing flower beds in between hydrangeas and butterfly bushes!  (Now if we can just get the deer to quit eating them before we can…)  Make sure to put tomatoes in a sunny spot in your yard and water them generously.  You’ll be rewarded with a bumper crop of delicious tomatoes that your friends and family will be begging you for any extras.  Here are a few of my favorite ways to eat fresh-grown tomatoes this summer.

 

Monday ~ Taco Night.  If you haven’t tried ground chicken for tacos, you should!  It’s very tasty and has a lot less fat than ground beef.  I’ll chop up plenty of fresh tomatoes to top off our tacos, along with lettuce and shredded cheddar.

 

Tuesday ~ Oven Fried Chicken with mashed potatoes and garlic roasted zucchini (also from my garden!)

 

Wednesday ~ FFY (Fend for Yourself) Night.  I have my final golf lesson for the season tonight.  I will bring a turkey sandwich to work so I have something to eat before I hit the links.  Of course, there will be nice slice or two of tomato on that sandwich!

 

Thursday ~ FFY (Fend for Yourself) Night.  I’m teaching a Coupon Workshop, which means I’ll have to eat something quick this night.  Maybe there will still be some leftover Oven Fried Chicken…

 

Friday ~ Grilled Chicken Sausages (I like Johnsonville’s new line of them.)  I will make a few skewers of vegetables, brushed with Italian dressing to put on the grill too.  My favorite grilled veggies: mushrooms, zucchini, cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, and onion.

 

Saturday ~ Lemon Pepper Tilapia boiled Yukon Gold potatoes with fresh parsley and butter, and green beans.  This fish is very easy to make!  Just take thawed tilapia fillets, pat dry, and season with a lemon pepper spice blend, like Mrs. Dash’s.  In a frying pan or skillet, spray some butter flavored cooking spray (or a small amount of butter) and cook each on each side for 3 or 4 minutes.  (Thanks to my friend, Ericka, for this easy dinner idea!)

 

Sunday ~ Chicken Bruschetta and salad.  This is my favorite recipe with fresh tomatoes and basil!  Enjoy!
 

Chicken Bruschetta

4 chicken breasts

1 large fresh tomato, chopped and seeded

2 – 3 Tbs of Balsamic salad dressing (plus extra for marinade)

¼ cup of chopped fresh basil

Shredded Italian blend cheese

 

Marinate the chicken breasts in balsamic dressing 30 – 60 minutes.  Combine the tomato and basil with enough balsamic dressing to coat.  Grill the chicken on one side.  When you flip the chicken to the other side, top the chicken with the tomato and basil mixture.  For last two minutes of grilling, top each chicken breast with shredded cheese. 

 

Meal Planning Monday – Farmer’s Market

 

            This week’s post is by Leah Kelley.

            I love my local farmers market.  Not only am I getting farm-fresh produce but I’m also supporting my local farmers.  With such a wet spring it took a bit longer for the produce to make it to the market, but it’s finally here.  I thought I’d share a few of my favorite recipes that use the veggies and fruits I pick up at the market. 

 

Monday ~ Zucchini Muffins with Streusel Topping

 

Tuesday ~ Cucumbers and Tomatoes with Italian dressing and feta cheese

 

Wednesday ~ Fresh Tomato and Corn Salsa and Guacamole with Homemade Corn Tortillas Chips

 

Thursday ~ Vegetable Bolognese with Eggplant, Peppers, and Zucchini

 

Friday ~ It’s Girls Night Out, so no cooking for me!  The hubby and kids will have leftovers.
Saturday ~ Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms, I stuff them with spinach, tomatoes, garlic, and red onions.  Then I top them with Mozzarella cheese.

 
Sunday ~ Family Movie Night.  We make a pizza at home and watch movies we rented from the library. My girls get so excited they get to help make the pizza.  I highly recommend trying it if you have kids.
Thank you to www.GoodCheapEats.com  for the recipe!

 

Vegetable Bolognese (Adapted from Martha Stewart)
6 Tablespoons olive oil

1 eggplant, peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch cubes

1 onion, coarsely chopped

1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped

1 medium zucchini, coarsely chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

1 pound ground beef

14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes with juices

3 cups tomato sauce

1/4 cup red wine

1 Tablespoon dried oregano

In large stockpot, heat 4 Tablespoons of olive oil.  Add eggplant and cook, stirring, over medium heat for 6 minutes.  Remove from pan.  Add remaining 2 Tablespoons olive oil and heat.  Add onion, bell pepper, zucchini, and garlic.  Cook for 7 minutes.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Add ground beef and cook until cooked through, stirring often.  Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, red wine, and oregano.  Add water if too thick.  Adjust seasonings.  Bring to bubble.  Reduce heat.  Cover and simmer for 25 minutes.  Serve over pasta.

CouponChief.com

              I really love shopping and I especially love shopping online!  In fact, I probably do more shopping online than in the stores.  With all the things I have to keep me busy – teaching Coupon Workshops, playing golf with my mom, financial coaching appointments, painting classes, etc. – it just seems like I don’t have any spare time to run to the mall.  Plus, I love getting packages in the mail…  It’s like Christmas in July!
            Being a Coupon Queen, I always make sure that I’m using coupons when I shop online or in the store.  I was delighted when I discovered a great source of online coupon codes at CouponChief.com!  This site has coupon codes for whatever I’m looking to buy, whether it be books (Borders), Iams cat food (Pet Smart), coupon binder supplies (Office Max), pink lipstick (Sephora), or lacy unmentionables (Victoria’s Secret).  There are coupon codes for hundreds of websites including such popular ones as Walmart, Target, Amazon, Old Navy and Macy’s.
            There are two reasons the CouponChief.com is going to be the first place I stop for online coupon codes from now on.  First, the website is very easy to navigate and isn’t cluttered with ads like many other coupon sites.  The second reason is that I can actually earn money for myself by sharing my coupon codes with their “Pays-2-Share” program! Here’s how it works.  You register on the site, upload your coupon codes for various websites, and CouponChief.com will pay you 2% of the sales when someone uses one of your uploaded coupon codes (see the website for details and limitations.)
        So, go check out CouponChief.com for yourself and start saving and earning money now!
            Don’t forget to become a fan on Facebook too: http://www.facebook.com/couponchief


Meal Planning Monday – Vacation!

             

              I just got home from a four-day road trip with my brother, Jim, to attend a family wedding in Buffalo (which actually has fantastic weather in July.)  Vacations are fun, but if you’re not careful you can blow a big wad of cash on meals when your family is traveling. This week I’m going to give you some great tips for eating well on the cheap when you’re out of town.
            Whether you are traveling by car or plane, it makes sense to pack your own snacks so you’re not paying an arm and a leg for them at airports and gas stations.  Snacks like granola bars, trail mix, pretzels, apples, and dried fruit are inexpensive at the grocery store (especially if you’re using coupons!) and they pack well.
            If you are traveling by car, make sure you’ve saved some space for a small cooler!  Instead of blowing $25 on a fast food lunch for your family, pack some sandwiches or wraps, cut-up veggies and dip, chips, and fruit.  Save room in that cooler for bottled water and soda!  You can purchase that at the grocery store for a fraction of the price you’ll pay at a convenience store.
            When you are booking your vacation reservation, consider staying at a hotel that includes breakfast with your room.  Depending on the size of your family, this can save you a ton of money!  If you travel frequently, make sure you’re signed up for your favorite hotel chain’s rewards program.  On this recent trip to Buffalo, my brother got a free room, plus discount coupons on meals and free drinks at the hotel’s bar/ restaurant for being a Holiday Inn Platinum member.  (Saving $ runs in the family!)
            One savings trick that my husband and I used last winter in Hawaii was to make lunch our biggest meal of the day.  Dining out is especially pricey in resort locations, but you still want to sample the local fare.  We would eat lunch at swanky restaurants around 1:30 or 2 PM.  The entrees were 1/2 to 1/3 of the price at lunch time, and the service was usually great because they aren’t as crowded as dinner time.  If we found ourselves getting hungry in the evening, we’d find a bar/ restaurant that had good happy hour specials and have some drinks and appetizers at a discount.  We also stick to water and rarely buy soda at restaurants.  You can easily add $2 – $3 per person to your tab before you even order any food with soda.  For a family of four, that could be as much as $12 – yikes!
            If you’re driving to your destination, take your cooler up to your hotel room.  Stop at a local grocery or drug store and buy your bottled water or soda there instead of at the hotel vending machines, where you’ll pay three to four times the amount.
            Finally, it may be worth your while to purchase an Entertainment book for your destination city for the restaurant and attraction coupons.  Entertainment books are usually deeply discounted by early summer.  I hope these tips help you to eat well without breaking the bank on vacation!  Use the money you save on food on drinks to do something fun, like an extra day at the amusement park, or a surfing lesson!  Happy Trails!
             

Meal Planning Monday ~ Delightful Desserts

This week’s post is by Leah Kelley.
            We’ve given you a few weeks of dinners, one post about snacks, and one about lunches.  I think we need to take a break from meals.  So let’s talk about dessert.  Who doesn’t love dessert?!  Sometimes our family has a “Backwards Dinner.”  It’s where we have dessert first then dinner.  I remember it being such a big deal when I was a kid…  I thought I had the coolest parents ever!  Instead of a meal for each day, I’m giving you seven of my favorite thrifty desserts. 
Banana Pudding ~ This is so cheap and easy to make.  All you need is a box of Vanilla Wafers, box of instant vanilla pudding, and a few bananas.
Strawberry Shortcake ~ Find Bisquick and Strawberries on sale and you have a thrifty dessert.
Ice Cream Sundaes ~ What kid or adult doesn’t love ice cream?
Brownies ~ Catch a good sale at Remke or Meijer and you can find brownie mix for FREE!!  Top them with icing or just throw them in a bowl with some strawberries and Cool  Whip.
Cookies ~ Chocolate Chip and Sugar cookies are the favorites around here.  During summer I’ll make a batch of sugar cookies, spread about an inch thick of chocolate ice cream on one, then top with another cookie.  Easy homemade ice cream sandwiches.
Angel Food Cake with Berries ~ Whenever I can find marked down angel food cake I buy at least two of them.  I freeze one, then slice the other up and top with berries and Cool Whip.  (If you haven’t noticed – I love Cool Whip!)
Fruit Salad ~ I use whichever fruits are in season, which makes this a cheap and tasty dessert option.  I use bananas, pineapple, tangerines, grapes, strawberries, box of vanilla pudding, and a splash of orange juice.  This makes a good breakfast also.
I say live it up once a week (or at least once a month) and have some dessert for dinner!