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Kelloggs Rice Krispies w/ 25 % Immunity *Review*

Posted by Felicia Monday, August 31, 2009, under | 0 comments

Vocalpoint is truly one of my favorite websites! They really allow you to get involved by completing surveys, participating in message boards, checking out new recipes and so much more!

Recently they sent me a coupon for a free box of Kelloggs Rice Krispies with 25 % Immunity. That's right, a great tasting cereal that will help boost my little ones immune system! I absolutely love this idea and couldn't wait to grab that free box and check it out for myself. The new box of Kelloggs Rice Krispies with 25 % Immunity tastes just as good as the original, but knowing those extra nutrients are in there made it even that much better for me and my children.

Here is the added nutrients & antioxidants list from Vocalpoint:

Vitamin A: Helps make the T-Cells in the immune system stronger, so they can fight of bad things better.

Vitamin B6: Helps produce cells that maintain and regulate the immune system.

Vitamin B12: Helps with the reproduction of cells

Vitamin C: A powerful antioxidant that helps protect against invading antibodies that could cause damage to the immune system.

Vitamin E: Breaks up free radicals (harmful molecules) to protect against the damage they could cause.

I have always loved Kelloggs Rice Krispies and this is just another great reason to love them! They are so versatile, you can use them in some of your favorite cooking recipes, make Rice Krispies treats or just grab a bowl and some milk. However you eat them you are going to feel even better about feeding them to your family, especially with the flu season coming up again!

Cleaning Tips & Tricks to Save

Posted by Felicia Monday, August 24, 2009, under | 0 comments
Some of the cheaper things you can do to clean are also the safest for your family. Here are some tips and tricks to save you a buck or two:

~I love using diaper cloths as my cleaning rags. They are thick, so they absorb a lot of mess, and they are soft on glass and furniture. Wash them, bleach them if you need to, they are great and last a long, long time.

~Vinegar is a wonder all in itself! It is great for cleaning just about anything and it kills most mold, bacteria, and germs due to its acidity. I always have it on hand and regularly mop my floors with hot water and a few caps of vinegar. It is a great little cleaning secret that you should share with everyone you know. Check out this page on Vinegar Tips for more great info: Click Here

~Have an old toothbrush? DON'T THROW IT AWAY! I always hang on to my old ones and use them to clean those crevice areas, such as behind faucets, in the corners of walls/floors, sliding door areas and under toilet rims-I keep one old toothbrush just for the toilet cleaning.

~ Have an old pumice stone? Use it to gently scrub away any rust marks inside your toilet. Be careful not to scrub too hard though.

~ I love using green scrubbies (as I call them) in my showers and anywhere with built up soap scum. They work great on chrome sinks and faucets as well. Be careful with them though as they can scratch.

~I use Dobie pads to clean my dishes with and when they start looking yucky or lose their yellow color I use them with my kitchen cleaners, that way I really get my money's worth out of them. No need to buy separate cleaning sponges as long as you are using products that kill bacteria and mold anyway.

~Use an old putty knife to clean other hard to reach places or spots with mold. They are very thin and sharp so you can get into any area and scrape away. Just be careful not to scrub away anything you want there! Also, wrap a diaper cloth around the edges and use it that way to get in tiny areas.

~Toothpicks are another cheap thing that most people have around there house that can clean in tiny areas. Wrap a cloth or even paper towel around the end for maximum cleaning power!

~One thing I avoid buying is paper towels. While they are a great thing to have around, just in case, I find that if I pay for them they seem to get used very fast. Whereas I could probably use a cloth or towel to do the exact same work for free-just a quick wash in the washing machine and done.

~This brings me to your washing machine habits. Be sure to only use as much detergent as you need. There may be a fill line on the cap of your detergent bottle, but chances are(at least in my case) you don't need near as much as they say you do, especially if your clothes are sudsy when they come out. So, watch and feel your clothes when they come out-smell them if you want and adjust your amount of detergent as needed. You may like it the way it is and that's fine. I prefer to use a bit less. ;)

~This works the same with your dishwasher. You may not need to fill it all the way up--especially if you are finding an excess of soap leftover in the cup or on your dishes. Also, NEVER run your dishes through a cycle unless your washer is full. That would be a waste of a lot of water and electric. Save yourself some pennies and wait or wash them by hand. You can also save a bit by not setting them to dry, but instead opening the door when they are done and letting them air dry.

~If you ever have that soap scum buildup on you dishes from your dishwasher, then try soaking them in vinegar. This works for everything I have ever tried including plastic, glass and copper bottom pans. I soak them for as long as needed to loosen the scum with a little scrub. You may want to check your manufacturer's guide, just in case there is any reason the acid in the vinegar could damage anything, but I have never had any problems.

I feel like I could go on and on, so I may add some more tips later-as I think of them! I hope this is helpful and thanks for reading! =)

Frugal Shopping-Clothing

Posted by Felicia Sunday, August 16, 2009, under | 0 comments
Frugal shopping can be applied in all areas of your life. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Buying clothing & shoes

Plan ahead! Never buy in season, as you will pay so much more that way. Always buy clothes at the end of the season, as that is when they will be on their biggest sale. Stores will clearance them out, which means HUGE savings for you. If you are buying for children, think ahead. If you have a little one that is in a 4T and you are buying clothes that are on clearance from summer, then try to think what they will be wearing by next spring/fall--most likely you will need to buy 5T. Obviously, if you are needing clothes right now for your little one, this won't work. In that case I would suggest checking out your second hand stores. You can sometimes find clothes with tags still on them for a fraction of the cost. If you are in the summer months, stock up at yard sales! A lot of clothes will be in great condition and as low as .25 cents a shirt or pant. You can also get some great play clothes that way.

If you are needing underclothing and socks then you should try to search ads online; Kohls, Sears, Wal-Mart, Meijer, Target, T.J. Maxx, Burlington Coat Factory-someone is bound to have what you need on sale. If they don't that week, wait a week if you can.

Do not pay full price for anything-even if you think you have to have it. Wait a week or two, it is very likely that it will go on sale soon. Another great tip is to check online for store coupons. Sometimes you can find 15% off coupons for doing a quick online survey or even $10 off coupons in the mail. This past week I have received coupons for $10 off a purchase of $10 or more from two different stores. That is $20 in clothing or housewares, for free!!

Remember that with children, they grow out of those novelty items very fast. Before you buy something, think of how long it is really going to last before you will need to replace it with another size. A great example is shoes. While you should most definitely buy the best shoes that work for your child's feet, to be sure they can walk ok without hurting their foot growth, you should also keep in mind that those Nike size 2 infant shoes are only going to be worn 3-6 months and probably not even walked in. Is it really worth spending $30 on them? Is that practical? Probably not. Check out your favorite superstore and you will probably be able to find some equally cute shoes for a third of the price.

Speaking of shoes, be sure to look online for coupons for your favorite shoe stores! Check your phone book for shoe outlets near you and check those first for what you need, before you hit the pricey department and specialty stores. Sign up for any free rewards programs you can and most times you will get a great coupon for your birthday. I went one time with $30 worth of coupons (1 from my b-day & another just from a mailer) around my birthday and walked out with a brand new pair of shoes for free!

Great Grocery Saving Tips

Posted by Felicia Saturday, August 15, 2009, under | 0 comments
One of my biggest ways to save money is at the grocery store. I wanted to do a post with just a few getting-started tips to show just how easy it is to save!

*ALWAYS make a list before you go! If you are shopping on Friday, start no later than Wednesday when you are writing your list. I go bi-weekly, as I seem to save even more that way.

* I also make a dinner list before writing my grocery list. I don't go so far as to decide what night we are going to eat what, but I will make a list of at least 14 meals that I need to be sure I have the ingredients to make. Spaghetti, chili, fried chicken, beans and cornbread,pizza, pork chops, tuna casserole, ect. Then I can refer to my list and check my pantry to be sure I have all items on hand.

*Before sitting down to write it, gather together all of your local store ads--hopefully they are all located near each other. I shop at Meijer, Kroger and sometimes Target so I get all of their ads together so I can see what is on sale at each store. If you don't have printed ads, check them out online! I then sit down with a couple sheets of paper with each store's name at the top.

*You should have an idea of what you will need necessity wise and what you are running low in--toilet paper, laundry detergent,milk, eggs, cheese, ect. Leave out cookies and ice cream-as they are not necessities. Also, refer to your dinner list and add anything not in your pantry to the necessity list.

* Scan your ads for who has each of these things on sale--for me this week Kroger had milk 1/2 gallons on sale and Meijer did not-so I make a note on the Kroger sheet of milk-.99 cents x 4(to equal 2 gallons for that week--milk is the one item that I will buy in-between shopping trips), Meijer has eggs for .79 cents, so I write that on the Meijer sheet. So on and so on, until I have the necessities covered. If you have a dinner that you need a lot of ingredients for and nothing is on sale, you may want to consider switching that meal with something else in your recipe box.

* Keep an eye out in your ads for exceptional deals. Once in a great while I will come across shredded cheese on sale for $1 a bag(which is awesome!), so I encourage you to stock up!! That way you will get it for $1 now, and not have to pay $3 the next time you get groceries and it isn't on sale. Only stock up on items you use a lot of.

*Remember you can freeze most items and they will be ready when you need them! I stock up when the really good breads are on sale for $1 and then I freeze them, if I buy them on August 10th and they have a best by date of August 20th and I freeze them the day I buy them, then they should be good for 10 days after I thaw it out. It is generally that way for anything-kind of like they are frozen in time. =) You can really save buy stocking up.

*Buy meats that are being clearanced out--freeze them until you need them. Stores want to sell them BEFORE they go bad on their shelves so as long as you use them right away or freeze them, they are fine!

*Buy your fruits and vegetables in season and you will pay less. Try to buy the locally grown items as they cost less because you are not paying the extra amount that it costs stores to have them shipped across the country. You should also check out your local Farmer's Market, as that is not only a great way to save, but the food may also be better for you!

*Clip those coupons! Buy the Sunday paper-if you know they will have lots of coupons inside-peak if you need to. Also, check with any friends and family and if they don't use their coupons see if they will be willing to share them with you. If they too use coupons, maybe you can start a sharing system--where you share anything you won't use and they can do the same with you. Maximize your chances for those great coupons. Also, do not forget internet coupons! I have never had any trouble with a store accepting them and you can find coupons on just about anything online with a simple search.

*Check your store's coupon policies. Both Kroger and Meijer double my coupons, so my .50 cent coupons are really worth $1.

*Keep a coupon organizer with each section broken down. In mine I have it broken down by the way my favorite store is set up. Meijer tends to be cheaper overall, so I have it set the way I go through the store-back to front. My sections include, Dairy, paper products, cleaning, baking, helpers, cereal/breakfast, crackers/cookies, chips, drinks, frozen, meat, bread and veggies. If I need a coupon, I know exactly where to look for it.

* Use them wisely. If you have a coupon for .25 cents off a loaf of bread that is normally 3.19, save it for when that bread goes on sale and buy the loaf that will be cheaper that week. Obviously if the bread is on sale for a $1 that week, hop ALL over it!! Coupons really help so much more when the item you are buying is already one sale or you just HAVE to have it(i.e. toilet paper) otherwise I say save it!

*Keep in mind brand names are really only better than store brands 9 out of 10 times for me. Store brands can really save you tons of money. If you have never purchased a store brand product before-say Meijer spaghetti sauce versus Ragu- then only buy one and just try it. If you don't like it, make a mental note and don't buy it again or just try a different variety. I really only have a few particular item I HAVE to have the name brand for and that is where those coupons will help. =)

*After I write everything I know we need to buy for those two weeks, I write down my estimated cost for each item. I buy mostly the same things each shopping trip or at least have an idea of what each thing should cost. I then add all of those prices up and write my estimated total at the top--to be sure I keep under my budget. If I am under, then I can add in the sweets and treats if I want to, or I can simply be proud of myself for saving that extra money and apply it towards something I need it for! If you decide to apply it towards something else, be sure to wait until after your grocery trip, of course. =)

* When you have your list done-stick to it no matter what! If you went prepared and wrote down everything you will need, then you should have no need for that impulse bag of chips or cookies.

Final Grocery Note

If you do not already have a budget amount in mind-create one, so you know how much you need to stay under and whether you can really afford those extras(cookies and ice cream) this week. If you can't, cut them out! For my family of 4 my budget is to stay under $140--which I always do. Most of the time when I go to Meijer I spend half of what I would have if I had bought everything at full price and no coupons. If my bill should have been $120, I should spend around $60. Obviously that fluctuates-depending on what we need and what is on sale.

And last, but not least: Have fun with it!! I LOVE walking out of their feeling like I have just saved us so much money. It is a great contribution to our family and very worth the time it takes to be prepared. The best is when you find an item in your grocery ad for that week that costs $1 and you have a .50 cent coupon that you know will double. Ta-da! Instant freebie bliss!! =)

Happy shopping!

CoverGirl Outlast Lipstain Review

Posted by Felicia , under | 0 comments

As a BzzAgent, I have recently had the great opportunity to test out the CoverGirl Outlast Lipstain thanks to By signing up with BzzAgent they allow you to complete a few surveys to qualify for BzzCampaigns, which are word-of-mouth programs that allow you to test-drive new products (sometimes before they are available in stores!). When you sign up for a campaign you will usually receive a free product in the mail to try out for yourself . Then you can talk about the product with friends and family ("spread the Bzz") and you are able to influence the companies when you report back to the hive.

My latest BzzCampaign is the CoverGirl OutlastLipstain in Everbloom Kiss. Here are a few of the features listed in my BzzGuide that was sent along with the product:

*It is non-transferable, so it won't rub off, smudge or budge

*Lightweight--in fact, it feels up to five times lighter than regular lipstick.

*Created to provide lasting color

*Made with a precision marker tip for easy and exact application

*Water-based(not alcohol-based), so it won't dry out your lips

*Contains lip conditioners, such as glycerin and hyaluronic acid

*Infused with a light raspberry-vanilla scent and flavor

*Packaged and displayed for simple, accurate shade matching

*One of the first lipstains in marker form found at all mass retailers, food and drug stores

*Suggested retail 7.29 (compare that to a department store lipstain)

*Available in 10 colors-Everbloom Kiss, Bit of Blossom, Berry Smooch, Teasing Blush, Sassy Mauve, Plum Pout, Coy Coral, Wild Berry Wink, Flirty Nude, and Cinnamon Smile.

After using it numerous times--here are my thoughts on this innovative product and whether it stands up to its claims:

* It is definitely non-transferable--something my husband, kids and I appreciate-no lipstick kisses all over those cheeks. =) I have tested it and it does not transfer to anything!

*It is VERY lightweight--in fact that is my favorite feature. It feels like I am wearing nothing at all, and yet I know that I am and it makes me feel very feminine without thinking it might look "cakey"

*My only complaint-I don't feel like the name "Outlast" fits this lipstain. The color is wonderful when it goes on, but doesn't seem to last more than a few hours on me. I have been conditioning my lips before and in between, but the color just seems to fade to soon and I find myself re-applying.

*I LOVE that it is water-based! I can feel the difference in my lips when I use it and I can tell that they are more conditioned than they are with other lip products I have used.

*The smell and taste of the lipstain go hand-in-hand and I love it. I hate the crayon smell and wax taste I find with regular lipstick, so this is a pleasant surprise. It makes it fun to lick my lips. Maybe that is why it doesn't last as long on me?

*I wasn't too sure about the marker shape that it comes in. It is a bit strange, at first, to feel like you are literally drawing on your lips and coloring them. After using the lipstain a few times I was used to it and now I welcome the ease of applying it with precision. It is so easy to stay in your lip lines because of how small and perfect the tip of the marker is.

My Final thoughts:

This is a great new makeup tool that I will keep using and I can't wait to check out the other 9 colors that are available. It is very easy to apply, lightweight, tasty, and best of all kiss-proof! The only thing that I would change is making it last a bit longer, but hey it is so fun to apply that it just isn't that big of a deal. I am definitely sold on the CoverGirl Outlast Lipstain and would recommend it to anyone I know!