New PinchMe Samples Drop 8/10/2021!

Sample Tuesday is Coming 8/10/2021- Mark your calendars, set an alarm on your phone!

Don’t have any idea what I am talking about? PinchMe! Join PINCHme and receive free samples that you can provide feedback on.

PinchMe is awesome! Once you are signed up, they will email you reminders when new samples are about to drop, and remind you when it’s time to leave feedback.

Answer a series of questions about your household and shopping habits in the Member Profile. PinchMe learns what you like and offer samples just for you.

Once you’ve had a chance to try the samples, complete a short feedback survey to tell PinchMe what you think of the samples.

I get PinchMe samples every month. Here is what arrived at the end of June for the June 2021 boxes. The One Bar was really good.

What are you waiting for? Sign up here and get on the free sample bandwagon! I’ve gotten all kinds of awesome sample/trial size items, as well as full-sized items to try out from PinchMe!

8/1/2021 Weekly Meal Plan

0a5e9dab796cea8a07eabe4eb4795b9e.jpgWOO- 17 more days until school starts! Not that I’m counting, but the big kid yesterday was lamenting that it was *still* summer vacation and that we wanted to go back to school.

For the most part, summer lunch distribution is over, and we’re using up coupons and other freebies to stretch our end-of-summer frivolity.

There are a few events that we are going to this week, including this one.

I went to the grocery store on Friday and stocked up on snacks, and we also did a big Costco Trip to stock up on some staples that we were running low on (and a rotisserie chicken, because, YUM).

And I’ve been getting a lot of really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods.

We are skipping our CSA box this week, we’ve still got a lot left from last week.

Veggies and fruit are delivered by Yasukochi Family Farms CSA. For $25, it’s a great deal. I don’t have to pick anything, go to the store, or carry it upstairs. I can’t go to the store and get the same amount we get weekly for $25. Seriously. It’s a deal. I spend about an hour on Monday afternoon cleaning and prepping veggies for the rest of the week.

I meal prepped over the weekend and got lots of veggies roasted, rice for lunches, and the rotisserie chicken broken down. I may be making some soup this week too.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste. If you are looking for a kitchen inventory printable, I have made my own and you can find them for sale here on my Etsy Store.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids.  The kids are nuts about pancakes. The Big Kid has been on a protein shake kick in the AM.

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. The kids are digging leftovers from dinner, or quesadillas.

Dinner: Usually, I do a crockpot meal on Mondays, but now that we are home all the time, we’ve been having an odd combination of fully home-cooked, scratch meals, and frozen entrees and veggies. I have been posting our meal plans on Instagram too- As well as pics of stuff we are doing to keep busy.

  • Sunday: Chef Salad (lettuce, spinach, bacon, hardboiled eggs, carrots, corn, leftover roasted veggies)
  • Monday: Chicken Arabiatta, chopped salad, garlic bread
  • Tuesday:  Breakfast for dinner (Pancakes, eggs, fruit)
  • Wednesday:  Nugget night: Nuggets, crackers, cheese, fruit
  • Thursday: Impossible Burger taco salad
  • Friday:  Takeout Night
  • Saturday: Leftovers, fruit

Please stay safe you guys!

Talk Back: What are you cooking for dinner this week?

Free Food Resources for August 2021 (San Diego County)

A new month means that it’s time for the monthly update of free food resources in San Diego.

You can still find resources here for Central and East County, and Here for North County.

If you are located outside San Diego County, call 211. If you are not familiar with 211, here is their website and it can point you in the right direction.

San Diego Food Bank Distributions for August 2021 can be found here. Enter your address (or just your zip code) and the map will show you all of the distributions in your area or closest to you. You can filter by the days of the week to find food when you are available. If there is an income requirement/limit to participate, each location/listing will say such.

Neighbor distributions are intermixed with the San Diego Food Bank Distributions, however, they have no income requirements, and you come as you are. These Distributions are primarily fruits & veg, however, some locations may also distribute canned goods, dairy, and bread.

Super Pantry Locations can be found here (this listing is countywide). The San Diego Foodbank website also has resources for Diaper banks, free food resources for seniors, and more.

Here is my 2021 Free Summer Lunch for kids post. It’s got all sorts of great info on where and when to pick up free lunches for kids all summer long. Most kids start school within the next few weeks, so these distributions are coming to an end.  However, kids will be able to get free lunches at school throughout 2021/2022 school year without having to apply or reside in a low-income home.

If you know of other resources, please leave a comment! And feel free to share this post with anyone you may know in need.

August 2021: New Month, New Coupons!

file000786402730Here is your monthly reminder!  A new month means new printable and electronic coupons!

The printable coupon market is slowly coming to an end. Smartsource no longer offers printable coupons, and you may notice that there are fewer coupon inserts in your Sunday newspaper. This is in favor of more offers available on apps. But if you love printable coupons….

  • Coupons.com (printable coupons, e-coupons, and a cashback app)

One of my favorite websites is the Sunday Coupon Review.  It helps me plot out scenarios in advance and I can email friends to ask for coupons in advance. Remember if clipping coupons isn’t your thing, but saving money is, check out my list of Smartphone apps that can save you the big bucks! New offers are added on the Smartphone Savings Apps all the time!

August is back to school time! Deals on School supplies, lunch food, kids clothes, and electronics. Ibotta has a great cashback deal right now on school supplies and lunch food, check my post here. 

For a complete list of types of foods and items that will be on sale, check out this post on the cycle of sales.

Here are a few of my favorite new coupons:


Save $1.00 on ONE (1) DANIMALS® 6pk Smoothies
Save $2.25 on ONE (1) Chameleon Whole Bean Coffee, Ground Coffee, or Cold Brew Concentrates – Shelf stable packs
Save $1.00 on ONE (1) Undercover Snacks 2 oz pack of Quinoa Crisps
Save $1.00 on ANY TWO (2) Clorox® Cleaning or Laundry Products (*excludes $1, trial size and travel size).
Save $1.50 on Any ONE (1) Finish® Quantum® 22ct+, Finish® Max-In-1® 24ct+, Finish® Deep Clean 38ct+ Dishwasher Detergent, Finish® JET-DRY®
Save $2.00 on ANY ONE (1) MAUI MOISTURE® Shampoo or Conditioner (excludes all Travel & Trial Sizes)
Save $1.00 on ANY ONE (1) Garnier® Fructis® shampoo, conditioner, treatment or styling product. (exclusions apply)

Free School Lunches for ALL California Students 2021-2022 School Year!

I read about this last week, got busy, and forgot to share this!

The state of California is joining cities like Chicago and Boston in offering free school lunches and breakfasts to students.  Previously students families had to meet certain income requirements to qualify for discounted or free school meals.

I’m so glad that this is now available to everyone. There are a lot of people who didn’t qualify but are facing food insecurity.

For more information, The NPR acrticle here has some deets. Be on the look out for information coming from your school district in your email or as a flyer in your kids backpack the few day of school.

Santee School District sent out an email earlier this week.

 

Dream Dinners: Now Booking In-Store Events!

This is some pretty cool news! Dream Dinners is launching its new Meal Prep Workshop program in August!
This is an exciting new twist on their in-store party and it’s a great opportunity for you to introduce your friends to Dream Dinners and earn fun rewards!
Here’s how it works:
As the host, you attend the workshop for free! This includes three pre-prepped medium-size meals, our grill marinade trio, and a private, in-store event with your friends. You also have the opportunity to earn up to $75 in host rewards! You can bring wine, Dream Dinners will make appetizers and you can enjoy your evening!

Your friends pay $50 to attend and learn about Dream Dinners. They’ll each receive three pre-prepped medium-size meals (Each meal feeds 2-3 people) and assemble a seasonal grill marinade trio, plus they’ll enjoy delicious samples of our food. We also have some exciting perks for them if they place an order at the workshop!

That’s $50 for three meals and 3 marinades!
One of the best parts of the new Meal Prep Workshops is that you and your friends get to share an experience with our exclusive seasonal workshop! Our theme for August Workshops is Summer Grilling and we’ll be making a grill marinade trio that Chef Laura created just for these events.

This is a great chance for you to get out of the house and have a fun night out with friends!
Space is limited, so if you are interested, contact your local Dream Dinners for more information and to book your Meal Prep Workshop.

Here in East County, it’s the La Mesa location.  Call or Text (619) 460-6800 or email: lamesaca@dreamdinners.com

If you are located in East County and want to join a Meal Prep Workshop, I’ll be planning one in the coming weeks. Drop me a comment or PM via Facebook or Instagram and I’ll get you an invite once I get the event set up.

7/30/2021 Friday Freebies and Deals!

Hey Gang! It’s Friday and that means it’s time for some freebies and deals.

This week has been busy, and you’ve probably noticed that I haven’t been posting much. We had family in town, and the kids and I have been out having adventures with friends. We went to the zoo yesterday! Back to school is right around the corner, and I’ve got some great posts with deals and info coming up.

As usual, let’s start this off with some ways to keep the kiddos fed and entertained this summer:

If you are looking for birthday freebies, fret not! I put together a list new for 2021- Check it out here.

Most of these freebies and deals are online. I know y’all are vaxxed and ready to party, but I’m trying to keep you safe. Keep up the social distancing with strangers, wash and sanitize your hands, and cover your mouth and nose if you are going to be around strangers. The kids and I still mask up when we go out, and I’ve got hand sanitizer at the ready.

Freebies:

Free Sacred CBD Pain Balm Sample
Free Sample of Rituals Sakura Body Cream
3 Free CBD Tincture or Cream Samples
Free Prevent Motorcycle Theft Engraved VIN Sheatticker Sheet
FREE Chipotle Guacamole Saturday 7/31
Free Raising Cane’s Box Combo
Free Mtn Dew Frost Bite at Walmart
Free AC Pro Can Koozie
Free Slurpee at 7-Eleven in July
Free OHi Superfood Bar
Free Far Out Toys Products
Free Hand Held Vacuum
Free Sample of Gold Digger’s Delight Paydirt
Free Dr. Praeger’s Cauliflower Burgers
Free Pulled Pork Classic Sandwich at Dickey’s
Free L’Oreal True Match Nude Hyaluronic Tinted Serum Sample
Free CannazALL CBD Gummies Sample
Free Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye Matrix
Free Crunchwrap Supreme at Taco Bell
Free Chanel Hydra Beauty Micro Serum Sample
Free Force Factor LeanFire Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies
Free Happiness Digest by Ellen White Book
Possible Free Hasbro Toys
Possible Free Mattel Toys
6 Months of Disney+ for Free ($47.94 Value)
Free Medium Fries w/ Any $1 Purchase at McDonalds – Every Friday

Deals:

Hanes Seamless Sports Bra ONLY $7.99 (Reg $23)
Corningware 10-Piece Bakeware Set ONLY $39.99 (Reg $80)
MAC Award-Winning Lip Set ONLY $35 Shipped ($55 Value)
Camel Plush-Lined Fold Over Boot ONLY $14.99 (Reg $42)
LOL Surprise OMG Remix ONLY $18.44 (Reg. $50)
Makeup Brush Set 16-Piece ONLY $7.64 (Reg. $16)
Eureka MaxSwivel Vacuum ONLY $44.99 Shipped (Reg $79)
Galanz 1.5-Pound Bread Maker ONLY $34.99 (Reg $80)
Jumbo Tennis Ball ONLY $12.99 Shipped (Reg $25)
Kids Sherpa Zip Hoodie ONLY $4.80 at Kohl’s (Reg $40)
Cuisinart 10-Pc Animal Print Cutlery Set ONLY $19.99 (Reg $40)
Traveler’s Club Kid’s 5-Piece Luggage Set ONLY $69.99 (Reg $160)
Fleece Toggle Jackets ONLY $16.99 + Free Shipping Offer
Kate Spade Leila Medium Flap Shoulder Bag ONLY $99 (Reg $379
Disney Princess Holiday Cinderella ONLY $15.99 (Reg. $40)
MUK LUKS Women’s About Us Sandals ONLY $19.99 (Reg. $40)
Old Navy Women’s Tanks ONLY $3 (Reg $6)

7/26/2021 Weekly Meal Plan

0a5e9dab796cea8a07eabe4eb4795b9e.jpgThis week we are planning some fun activities to get us out of the house: Going to the zoo, meeting up with some friends to play and have lunch.

The kids have been digging the free school lunches- It’s a great way to encourage them to try new foods. That’s great because the price of groceries has gone up exponentially over the past few months. We’ve been eating less meat to save money, and I’m leaning more on stores that have good deals like Grocery Outlet, and using my cashback apps like Fetch Rewards. I’ve been cashing out Fetch rewards for Target Gift Cards. I’ve been combining the Target Gift Cards with grocery sales and deals in the Target app, and picking up via curbside pick up. It’s a great option if you’ve got kids and you’ve got a busy summer.

And I’ve been getting a lot of really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods.

The CSA Box arrives in a few hours, but they send an email over a few days before with a sneak peek of what’s going into the box. This helps me meal plan for the week.

Veggies and fruit are delivered each Monday by Yasukochi Family Farms CSA. For $25, it’s a great deal. I don’t have to pick anything, go to the store, or carry it upstairs. I can’t go to the store and get the same amount we get weekly for $25. Seriously. It’s a deal. I spend about an hour on Monday afternoon cleaning and prepping veggies for the rest of the week.

I cleaned out the fridge last night and that really helped me figure out what to plan for the week. I’m trying to use up what we’ve got. I need to make a small trip to the store to get more milk, bread, and a few other things for our snack bag.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste. If you are looking for a kitchen inventory printable, I have made my own and you can find them for sale here on my Etsy Store.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids.  The kids are nuts about pancakes. The Big Kid has been on a protein shake kick in the AM.

Lunch: We pick up free school lunches during the summer for the kids, I also have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags.

Dinner: Usually, I do a crockpot meal on Mondays, but now that we are home all the time, we’ve been having an odd combination of fully home-cooked, scratch meals, and frozen entrees and veggies. I have been posting our meal plans on Instagram too- As well as pics of stuff we are doing to keep busy.

  • Sunday: Leftovers (We had so many random leftovers)
  • Monday: Pasta, Roasted Veggies, Salad
  • Tuesday:  Fritatta, Fruit Salad, Toast
  • Wednesday:  Nugget night: Nuggets, crackers, cheese, fruit
  • Thursday: Bean, Rice, and Cheese Burritos, Roasted veggies
  • Friday:  Takeout Night
  • Saturday: Leftovers, fruit, salad

Please stay safe you guys!

Talk Back: What are you cooking for dinner this week?

7/23/2021 Friday Freebies and Deals!

Hey Gang! It’s Friday and that means it’s time for some freebies and deals.

This week has been fun! We have relatives visiting from out of town. Additionally, The littlest kiddo finished up her literacy summer program, and the big kid had his first week without summer school. Lots of swimming this week! I hope you’ve had a good week and are ready got some freebies!

As usual, let’s start this off with some ways to keep the kiddos fed and entertained this summer:

If you are looking for birthday freebies, fret not! I put together a list new for 2021- Check it out here.

Most of these freebies and deals are online. I know y’all are vaxxed and ready to party, but I’m trying to keep you safe. Keep up the social distancing with strangers, wash and sanitize your hands, and cover your mouth and nose if you are going to be around strangers. The kids and I still mask up when we go out, and I’ve got hand sanitizer at the ready.

Freebies:

Free Food and School Supplies from Ibotta
Free Snacks, Candy, and Supplements from Try Products
Free Lancome Lash Idole Lifting & Volumizing Mascara
Free Sample of L’Oreal Revitalift Glycolic Acid Serum
Free Sample of Essence LIR Pet Food
Free Else Nutrition Plant-Powered Complete Nutrition Shake Mix
Free Medium Fries w/ Any $1 Purchase at McDonalds – Every Friday
Free Subscription to Cottages & Bungalows Magazine
Free Sample of Enfagrow Toddler Formula
Free Honey Stinger Waffle at Sprouts
Free Entenmann’s Little Bites Mini Tarts at Walmart
Free Macy’s Fragrances
Free Subscription to American Farmhouse Style Magazine
Free Starkist Tuna for Soldiers
Free American Golden Lager & Hard Seltzer House Party Kit
Free Pride Sticker
Free Baby’s Busy Day: Being One is So Much Fun! Book
Free Sample of L’Oreal Revitalift Hyaluronic Acid Serum
Free Mini Pineapple Plant
Free Pet Telemedicine Visit
Free Sample of La Roche-Posay SPF 60 Melt-In Sunscreen Milk
Free Sample of L’Oreal Age Perfect Radiant Serum Foundation
Free Eco Lips Lip Balm
2 Free Pints of Nightfood Ice Cream
Free The Little Potato Company Savory Herb Microwave Ready Kit

 

Deals:

75% Off Body Glove + Extra 10% Off at Checkout
70% Off Martha Stewart + Extra 10% Off at Checkout
65% Off prAna Apparel + Extra 10% Off at Checkout
Biker Shorts ONLY $4.50 with Coupon Code
Hanging Hammock with 2 Pillows ONLY $34.99 (Reg $65)
Old Navy High-Waisted Elevate Leggings ONLY $11.99 (Reg $30)
Up to 44% Off on Swimming Goggles on Amazon
Lowest Price: Giggle Wiggle Game ONLY $7.77 on Amazon
Plackers Dental Floss Picks & Travel Case ONLY $0.99
MUK LUKS Women’s Groove Music Sandals ONLY $24.99 (Reg $60)
MUK LUKS Marsha Sandals ONLY $21.99 (Reg. $45)
Nylabone Power Chew ONLY $1.01 (Reg. $3.69)
LEGO BrickHeadz Valentine’s Bear ONLY $5 (Reg. $10)
Crayola My Little Pony Coloring Book ONLY $2.39 (Reg. $5)
14-Piece Kitchen Knife Set ONLY $19.27 (Reg $26)
Clinique 6-Piece Skincare Set ONLY $47 Shipped ($93.50 Value)
B. Toys Table Top Easel for Kids ONLY $10.43 (Reg. $25)
Bounty Essentials Paper Towel 6 Big Rolls ONLY $3.95 (Reg $8)
VTech Go! Go! Smart Wheels Choo-Choo ONLY $9.98 (Reg. $20)
Crayola Peppa Pig Coloring Book ONLY $2.39 (Reg. $5)
Golden Girls ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas $5.99 (Reg. $13)

Recipe: Crispy Onion Chicken

This is a delicious, easy recipe. And kids love it too!

Crispy Onion Chicken

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken (your choice, I like breasts or thighs)
  • 2 cups French Fried Onions, crushed
  • 2 T. flour
  • dash freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted (You can use coconut oil or margarine if you are dairy free)

 

Directions:

  1. Place onions in a Ziploc bag and crush onions with a rolling pin (or a bottle of wine, whichever is handy)
  2. Pour crushed onions, flour, and pepper in a flat dish, mix thoroughly.
  3. Dip each piece of chicken in melted butter, and rolleach buttery piece in onion/flour mixture.
  4. Place each piece in a greased baking dish and bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, or until chicken is cooked throughout.

I like to serve these with mashed potatoes, and a green salad (I really like this one).