Meijer Ice Cream Summer Sweepstakes

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I scream, you scream…  We all scream for ice cream!!

It’s not really summer time without your favorite ice cream treats! My husband makes sure to grab some Klondike Bars any time he comes along shopping.  Thankfully he can get what he likes and I can make sure to grab some Gelato for myself as well as some ice cream sandwiches for my son.

Meijer has you covered regardless of the kind of ice cream your prefer and right now they are offering an super “cool” Ice Cream Summer Sweepstakes!

You can win ice cream for the rest of summer from participating brands such as Breyers, Breyers Gelato, Magnum, Good Humor, Popsicle, Ben & Jerry’s and Klondike.

Just text ICECREAM to 634537 and you will be entered to win a $100 Meijer Gift Card which you can use to purchase all of your favorite ice cream treats at Meijer!


Hurry, this contest ends on August 2nd.

Sponsored post by Lunchbox.

How to Make Homemade Peanut Butter

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Homemade Peanut Butter

Back to School means lots of school lunches.

This recipe for Homemade Peanut Butter is SO easy and only requires 1 ingredient.

Planters Peanuts

Honey (optional)
Salt (optional)



Place in food processor and run for about a minute and scrape down sides if necessary. Then process for another 3-4 minutes or until peanut butter has reached desired consistency.

peanut butter process

If using salted peanuts, you do not need to add any extra salt.

You can add honey if you want a little extra sweetness. If so, add about 1 teaspoon per cup of peanuts.

Creamy Peanut Butter

1 cup of peanuts yields a little over 1/2 cup of peanut butter.

How super easy is this recipe!!  I always wanted to make some when I visited my favorite fruit market because they had a machine that you could use to make your own peanut butter right in the store.

Homemade Creamy Peanut Butter

Unfortunately it was a little too pricey for me so I always skipped it.  Now with this recipe I can always make my own!!

You might also be interested in some of my other recent recipe posts.

Follow Kristie (Saving Dollars and Sense)’s board Saving Dollars and Sense on Pinterest.

Best Back to School Deals & Steals

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back to school deals

One of the Ways to Save on Back to School Shopping Costs is by starting early and shopping the sales each week!

Here are the BEST School Supply Deals happening this week!

I realize that some of us just got out of school and are beginning our vacations, but some states are headed back to school at the beginning of August.

These are the deals I would grab this week, remember we have a lot of time. I like to pick up the best deals each week instead of doing one huge shopping trip.

Also if you don’t have kids in school this year, you can still take advantage of the deals to restock your home office for the entire year.

Thanks to Passion for Savings for supplying this list for us.21968241_s
Here are the BEST School Supply Deals happening this week! These are the deals I would grab this week, remember we have a lot of deals including the full lists for each store listed on our Back to School Sales page.

Office Depot Back to School Deals

12 Pack No. 2 Pencils-$0.01 with $5 Min. Purchase

Plastic Rulers-$0.01 with $5 Min. Purchase

Protractors-$0.01 with $5 Min. Purchase

Sharpie Single Markers-$0.25

8 pk. Mechanical Pencils-$0.25


Staples Back to School Deals

12 Pack Eraser Caps-$0.25


Poly Cover Composition Books-$0.50

Pencil Box-$0.50

Pentel RSVP Pens 5 pk.-$1

Staples Classic Markers-$0.97

Walgreens Back to School

Wexford 2 Pocket Folders-$0.10 (Limit 10)

Pencils, Wexford Highlighters, Sticky Notes-6/$1
with In Ad Coupon

Glue, Scissors, Compass-$0.39
with In Ad Coupon

1 Subj. Notebook, 8 pk. No. 2 Pencils-$0.39
with In Ad Coupon

Scotch Tape 2 Pack with Color Dispenser-$0.69
with In Ad Coupon

4 pk. Retractable Gel Pens, Filler Paper-$0.79
with In Ad Coupon

Paper Mate Pens Inkjoy 8 pack-$0.99
$0.55/1 Paper Mate Pens Pack, exp. 9/20/15 (SS 07/26/15) [Excludes 2 in 1 stylus pen]
$0.44 after coupon!

CVS Back to School Deals

Buy 1, Get $5 Extra Care Bucks (Limit 1)
$4.99 after ECB!

Crayola Products-Buy 1, Get 1 50% off
Spend $20, Get $5 Extra Care Bucks (Limit 1)

Walmart Back to School Deals

2 Pocket Folders – $0.17

1 Subject Notebooks – $0.25

Elmer’s Glue Sticks (Singles) – $0.25

No 2 Pencils (8 pack) – $0.47

Crayola Crayons (24 count) – $0.50

Elmers Glue (4 oz.) – $0.50

Composition Notebooks – $0.50

Rite Aid Back to School Deals

Mead Composition Books-3/$1.98
Buy 3, Get 100 Points (Limit 2)
$0.33 ea. wyb 3 after Points!


Pencil Cases or Sharpeners-3/$0.99


I am fully expecting the deals to get even better in the coming weeks!

5 Ways to Save on Back to School Shopping Costs

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Ways to Save on Back to School Shopping

I know some of us are still basking in the summer sun and ignoring the fact that shorter school days are just around the corner.  But I was surprised to see several trees have already begun to change their colors and I couldn’t ignore the fact that there were many moms with kids in the Target Back to School section the other day while I was there.

I read this news report last year that stated the average parents are spending is $688 on Back to School per child!  

We homeschool, and even with classes & curriculum I don’t think we have ever spent that much on school.  Maybe I am so far removed from reality and have no concept of how much it costs to send your kids to school, but this seems a bit outrageous to me especially considering the fact that we are supposed to be living in a time of recession.

Other than following my Back to School Deals here, there are a few other things you can do to ensure that you get the most bang for your buck this year.

back to school

So whether you are ready for it or not, I am here to offer you some helpful tips to save on this years Back to School shopping with the following Five Ways to Save on Back to School Shopping.

  1. Take an inventory.  Look in your children’s closets & dressers and get together a list of what they already have that you can skip buying right now.  Then you can see what they still need and go from there.
  2. Set a budget and make a list. Once you have your inventory in hand you can sit down and set a budget with your kids.  It really helps to let them know before heading to the stores how much you have to spend on them.  This will help avoid any fights while you are in the store over the latest and greatest unnecessary items. Since there are only 5 days in a school week, you really only need to come up with a couple outfits.  Try to buy things that can be interchangable to create even more outfits with just a few simple pieces.
  3. Don’t buy snack sizes.  When it comes to lunches, don’t fall prey to snack-size options when planning school lunches. Buy a full-size bag of crackers and then make your own snack sizes with reusable containers to save a ton on snacks. Also make sure to pick up a reusable Lunch Kit like these ones to save on bags.
  4. Plan ahead. Take some time to check out all of the sales papers to find out where you can pick up the things on your list for the least amount of money! You can go here to find out what all of the current Back to School sales are to find out where to go for the best deals on school supplies!  Also consider picking up a few extra school supplies while they are so inexpensive to have on hang during the year when you child runs out.
  5. Keep everything in perspective. Really, keep in mind that you are sending your kids to school to learn. Of course we want them to feel confident and we all know that looking great helps especially with older kids. But be careful that you are not sending the message that the way they look, or the things they have are more important that getting a great education!

I can’t help but think after reading the article that said parents are spending $688 per child on Back to School that maybe these parents are forgetting the reason for school?

You can see even more great ideas in this Woman’s Day article How to Save Money on Back to School.

Also, if you plan to do any online school shopping you will want to make sure you check the Online Coupon Database for coupon codes to help you save even more!

Homemade Carrot Bisque

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We are continuing our summer series Using the Garden Veggies this week featuring Carrots.

My friend Lynette is sharing how she makes her Homemade Carrot Bisque that are so good and very inexpensive to make. She also shares some simple things you can do to change up the recipe based on your personal tastes.

Make sure to check out her blog Cleverly Simple for lots more tried and true homemade recipes.

Make sure to check back next week for another great recipe using garden veggies.


Nextbook Flexx 11 Back to School Giveaway

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Nextbook Flexx

I was sent the Nextbook Flexx 11 to review recently and I have to tell you it is awesome!

First I should mention that I was a little apprehensive about trying a new device because I knew that it would have the latest Windows operating system and I was right.

I have been holding off on upgrading from Windows 7 because I kept hearing how different Windows 8 is and how hard it is to adjust to a completely new system.

However making the transition with this device was so much easier than I expected it to be and after testing it out for a couple days I feel like an old pro using this new system. In fact, I cannot wait for included Windows 10 Upgrade to be released so I can try that one out too!

Once this device arrived, I opened it up and instantly admired how much smaller it was than my current device and also how incredibly light it was.

In fact it comes in at just about 4 pounds!!

Since traveling is part of my life as a blogger, I was thrilled by this fact because for the last 4 years I have traveled with a huge and heavy laptop and had been hoping for something that would be easy to toss into a carry on bag and take with me anywhere I would go.

I actually have a trip scheduled in a couple weeks and I cannot wait to take this with me instead of my huge, heavy and bulky laptop.

CaptureThe next thing I marveled at was the fact that the Nextbook Flexx 11 was a laptop and a tablet in one!

The keyboard is easy to remove to transform this laptop into a tablet with a simple push of a button. It’s also just as easy to replace again.  Truly, if I can figure it out anyone can ;)

While I think tablets are great for watching videos, I need a full size keyboard to actually work which is why I have never truly been a tablet convert until now. With this device I can have both a laptop for working and a tablet for fun!


I love that I no longer need to carry two devices and did I mention how incredibly light this thing is?

I mean I could carry it along with me in my purse and I am pretty sure it weighs less than my wallet.

Now that I have mentioned two of my favorite things about the Nextbook Flexx 11, let me tell you about the best part yet!

Walmart carries these right now for $227 shipped!

For under $250, the Nextbook Flexx 11 allows the entire family to stay connected, entertained, and productive with everything they want at their fingertips. Browse the Internet, reply to emails, read books, play games from the Windows Store, watch movies, video chat, and much more on the sleek, 11.6” tablet with detachable keyboard.

CaptureThe Nextbook Flexx 11 features:

  • 11.6 inch High-resolution 1366 x 768 IPS Screen
  • Intel® Atom Quad-Core / 1.8GHz (Z3735F)
  • 2GB DDR3L; 64GB onboard storage
  • WIFI 802.11 b/g/n
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • Front facing 2.0 M
  • Back Camera 2.0 M
  • Micro HDMI
  • Pogo Keyboard with two standard 2.0 USB Ports
  • Micro-SD card slot for expansion to 64GB
  • Support 3 -axis G-sensor
  • Built-in microphone
  • 9000MAH Internal rechargeable battery
  • Charging indicator light
  • Windows 8.1

Pretty awesome right?!!

Bigger and better than ever, the Nextbook Flexx 11 tablet is the enhanced tablet you’ve been looking for. With an 11.6-inch screen, 16:9 aspect ratio and 1366×768 resolution (IPS), the Nextbook Flexx 11 delivers great image quality to read, work, watch, stream or play. Weighing less than four pounds, the Nextbook Flexx 11 is a sleek, lightweight tablet, making it the ideal companion to enjoy anywhere anytime.

The Nextbook Flexx 11 comes with the Windows 8.1 operating system, an Intel® Atom quad-core processor, and 64GB of internal memory that can be expanded with microSD cards up to 64GB each. With WiFi and Bluetooth support built-in, easily take the Nextbook Flexx 11 with you, around the house or around the world.

Equipped with 2.0MP front and 2.0MP back cameras and an integrated microphone, you can capture your favorite moments and video chat with your loved ones. The Nextbook Flexx 11 also features USB and microHDMI inputs for connectivity to other devices. With a 3-axis G-sensor and a Pogo keyboard, it allows you to play various games without constraints or boundaries.

Nextbook Flexx Giveaway

I am so excited to be giving away one of these Nextbook Flexx 11 devices to one lucky Saving Dollars and Sense reader just in time for Back to School!

Here’s how to enter:

Leave me a comment telling what you like most about the Nextbook Flexx 11 and who you would like to win it for and why.

This giveaway is open to all legal residents of the US age 18 and older and will end on July 31st.

**Although the product for this giveaway was supplied to me free of charge, all opinions expressed are solely mine.