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The Caring With Coupons Blog shares deals, coupon savings, recipes, money and time saving ideas, decorating and entertaining on a budget, clothing discounts, family crafts, and much, much more!

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How To Make a Cupcake Pumpkin

Posted by caringwithcoupons on October 17, 2011 at 5:30 PM Comments comments (5)





Pumpkin Centerpiece of Pumpkin Cupcakes Today’s Halloween treat is a spectacular centerpiece idea.   If you’re not having a big Halloween party, you might want to save this idea for Thanksgiving. What could be more festive for fall than pumpkin cupcakes with maple spice frosting decorated and assembled to make a three-dimensional, edible pumpkin centerpiece!

 

It’s  a twist on our original “bouquet” recipe — to adorn the table in an unforgettable way.  

Pumpkin Centerpiece of Pumpkin Cupcakes and Maple Spice Frosting

(using step x step photos of our Bouquet Technique)

WHAT YOU NEED

 For Cake

48-52 cupcakes baked in Reynolds Orange Foil Baking Cups

2 packages (18.25 oz. each) yellow cake mix

2 cups canned pumpkin

2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

Water, oil and eggs (follow package directions)

2 teaspoons vanilla extract for cake

For Frosting

1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened

6 tablespoons maple syrup

2 teaspoons vanilla extract for frosting

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 1/2 to 2 packages (16 oz.each ) powdered sugar

Neon orange food coloring

Green food coloring

Optional:  orange sugar crystals

For Creating Centerpiece

1 large platter or tray (at least 12 inches wide)

1 8” Styrofoam ball (purchase at your local craft store)

1 4×4x2″ Styrofoam block  (purchase at your local craft)

4 6″ wooden skewers

1 glue gun and glue sticks

48-52 wooden craft sticks

1 small paring knife

INSTRUCTIONS

PREHEAT oven to 350°F. 

PLACE Reynolds Baking Cups in muffin pans; set aside. 

BEAT cake mixes, pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, water, oil, eggs and vanilla in a large bowl with an electric mixer on lw speed until moistened, about 30 seconds.  Then beat on medium speed for 2 minutes.  Spoon batter into baking cups.  If desired, each cake mix can be beaten separately just use half of pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla in each.

BAKE 20 to 23 minutes.  Cool.

MIX cream cheese, maple syrup, 2 teaspoons vanilla, and cinnamon in a large bowl.  Add powdered sugar gradually until well blended.

DIVIDE frosting, use food coloring to dye 1/2 cup green and the remaining frosting orange.

SET aside two cupcakes for stem.  PIPE or frost remaining cupcakes with orange frosting.  Sprinkle with orange sugar crystals,  if desired.  Very Important: Let frosting stand and harden at least 1 hour.

PREPARE CENTERPIECE

Place Styrofoam block on a platter.  Use hot glue to glue block to platter.  Insert 4 wooden skewers in a square center of block.

Place Styrofoam ball on top of block, sliding ball onto skewers.  Use hot glue to secure in place, if necessary.

Starting at the bottom of the styrofoam ball, insert one wooden craft stick angled 45 degrees up.  Push stick deep into ball so that about 1/2 of it remains sticking out to hold cupcake.Use a paring knife to make a thin slit into the bottom of the decorated cupcake.Slide decorated cupcake onto wooden craft stick.

Repeat these steps, one row at a time.  Work your way all the way around the bottom of the ball to the top, placing the cupcakes as close together as you can get them.

Leave a 3-inch circle of open space at the top for the stem.  Remove baking cups from the 2 cupcakes that were set aside for stem.  Cut a thin slice from the top of each cupcake to create flat surfaces. Frost cut side of one cupcake with green frosting and press bottom of second cupcake on top of it.  Prepare stem by spreading a thin coating of green frosting over all sides of both cupcakes.

Spread a dollop of green frosting in open space at top of ball to serve as “glue” for the stem.  Place frosted green cupcakes upside down on frosting so flat bottom of one of the cupcakes makes the top of the stem.  Spread frosting over stem until completely covered.  Use a fork to make circular lines in the top of the stem and vertical lines on the sides, if desired.

Optional:  place additional cupcakes on platter around bottom of Pumpkin.

.

How To Make Homemade Cream Cheese

Posted by caringwithcoupons on July 5, 2011 at 11:20 PM Comments comments (0)

I ran across this article on how to make your own homemade cream cheese.  It is so easy! 

Follow this link for directions:

Homemade Cream Cheese

How to Make Fabric Softener Sheets

Posted by caringwithcoupons on June 7, 2011 at 10:14 PM Comments comments (2)

·  Either buy a spray bottle or clean out onethat you may have lying around the house. Measure half a cup of cold water andpour it into the clean spray bottle.


Measure half a cup of your favoriteliquid fabric softener. Pour it into the spray bottle that contains half a cupof water. Shake the spray bottle to mix up the fabric softener and water.


Load up your dryer and just beforeturning it on, shake the spray bottle to make sure the liquid fabric softenerand water are mixed. Take a clean wash cloth and from about 4-6 inches away,spray it with the softener mixture about 5-6 times. Toss the wash cloth intothe dryer with your laundry and turn on the dryer.


After the clothes are dry, find thecloth that was used and you can now use it to remove static from electronicdevices such as televisions, computer monitors or anything else the builds upstatic electricity. After you are done, toss the softener wash cloth in thewasher with your other towels and wash clothes to remove any build-up.

 

 

 

How To Make Paperbag Popcorn

Posted by caringwithcoupons on June 7, 2011 at 10:07 PM Comments comments (1)

Doing the mathy math, microwave popcorn costs around $22.65 for 12 boxes with 3 packets per box — that’s an eye-popping $3.53 per pound!

Sure, you may think you’re paying all that delicious cash for a magic metal-lined bag that pops better kernels and cooks your corn more evenly. But think again. I can do the same popping magic trick with a cheapo plain brown paper bag. And at a tasty 50 cents per pound, plain popcorn kernels bought in bulk cost FAR less than that slimy packaged stuff.

Now let me pop the big question: have you ever recycled your leftover microwave popcorn bags? I cringe to think how much of this product graces our landfills, all in the name of snack food. But no fear, by switching your home movie snacking habit using this frugal trick, you can compost or recycle your used brown paper bags and create no waste. See How To Compost Without Raising a Stink for easy composting help.

Speaking of waist, do you know how many calories are contained in those popcorn flavor packets? What about the ingredients? Here’s the ingredient list from the Act II popcorn page on Amazon. Note: I couldn’t find this information on the company’s website.

Act II Popcorn Ingredients: Popcorn, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Salt, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Annatto Color. Contains: Fish, Milk

Fish? Milk? In my popcorn? Um, no thanks. I’ll skip the hydrogenated oil, fish, and milk additives in my snacks by sticking to my frugalicious and homemade popcorn version. Here’s how to make Microwave Popcorn in a Brown Paper Bag:

Step One: Get a brown paper bagThis is ridiculously easy, internet people. Just head on over to your local grocery store and pickup a package of no name flat-bottomed brown paper lunch bags.

I nabbed a package of 100 brown bags for around $2, on sale.

Step Two: Bag your popcornAdd a 1/2 cup scoop of bulk popcorn kernels to your brown paper bag.

Fold the bag over twice. Don’t use staples to secure the bag — this might spark in your microwave.

This is so exciting. I’m popping with excitement.

Step Three: Pop in microwaveStick the popcorn bag into your microwave. I set mine for 3 minutes on high.

 

Popping Tip: Stop the microwave when the popping slows to one to two pops per second. You don’t want to burn your tasty snack.

Step Four: Add gourmet toppingA pinch of salt with a dab of butter is the most popular way to eat popcorn.

But why not get creative and try some sweet or savory flavors to mix up movie night?

Try these toppings for some gourmet popcorn fun:

Mexican: Add chili powder, hot sauce, and salt.Kiss My Breath: Shake in onion powder and garlic powder — hold the kiss.Cheese Please: Mix in Parmesan cheese with a little salt.Sweet Tooth: A dash of cinnamon, a sprinkle of sugar, and a topper of honey. Now that’s money.Classic: A shake of salt with a pat of butter.Squawkfox: How do YOU make popcorn? Got a favorite gourmet popcorn topping to share?

Homemade Furniture Polish

Posted by caringwithcoupons on June 7, 2011 at 9:52 PM Comments comments (0)

The price of furniture polish has really increased over the years.  If your funds are low but your furniture needs some serious attention, then head to your pantry to make your own furniture polish.  Not only is it cheap, it's green!  Who doesn't love that?


Ingredients:

1 cup olive oil

1/2 cup lemon juice

Mix together in a clean new spray bottle. To use, remember to shake before each application. Apply a small portion to your cleaning cloth. Spread the polish over the furniture, trying to polish evenly. Use another clean cloth to polish the surface dry.


Cleans great, smells wonderful, and your wallet is so much fatter!!

Homemade Diaper Wipes

Posted by caringwithcoupons on November 4, 2010 at 10:31 AM Comments comments (5)

If you have small children, the cost of diapers, wipes, diaper rash ointment, teething ointment.....well, it all adds up.  Here is a recipe for homemade diaper wipes to help with some of your expenses.



Diaper Wipes


1 roll of paper towels

2 T. baby oil

2 T. baby bath or shampoo

2 cups boiled water, then cooled

Old diaper wipe container

(or any airtight container will do)


Each roll of paper towels will make two boxes of wipes. You also have two options for the style of diaper wipes to make. You can either cut the roll of paper towels in half; leaving them in a roll, or you can tear apart the towels and fold them to fit into the box.


After you place your towels into the empty box, mix the remaining ingredients in a large measuring cup. Slowly pour the liquid over the towels, making sure to cover them evenly.

If you have chosen the folded method, place half of the towels in the box and pour in half of the liquid. Then add remaining towels and remaining liquid on top of them. 

If you have chosen the rolled method, be sure to remove the cardboard from the middle before adding the liquid. After the towels have set for a short while, they will absorb the liquid more evenly and will keep fresh for several weeks.

 


 

The Art of Stockpiling

Posted by caringwithcoupons on August 14, 2010 at 1:37 AM Comments comments (1)


Posted on August 14, 2010 by Dawn Larkins



The Art of Stockpiling

 

 

 When you shop with coupons, it is very important to learn the art of stockpiling.  When you find items at their rock bottom prices, that is the time to buy.  If you have several coupons, then you will want to use them all in order to stockpile the item.  You want to have a mini store in your home.  When the kids runs out of cereal, you don't want to  run to the grocery store and pay full price which is usually around $5.00 .  You want to go to your "mini store" and grab a box that you only paid $1.00 for. Just on this one item, you have saved 80%.  Now imagine, if you were able to stockpile noodles, soup, condiments, crackers, pasta sauce, canned vegetables, frozen foods, cheese, hostilities, etc.......buying them all when they were at their lowest price.  You will have averaged savings of 75%.  If you only purchase one paper per week, you can save money on the items that you use coupons on, but the better way is to collect 4+ sets of inserts per week.  A good rule of thumb is one paper per every member of the house hold. So, if there are 5 of you in your family, you will want to pick up 5 papers per week.  Or, get them from you neighbors, friends, or relatives.There are 5 in my family but I like 6, although I receive around 10+.  Six sets of inserts is a great number for serious stockpiling. When peanut butter goes on sale and you use your coupon to grab it for free, doesn't it make more sense to stockpile 6 instead of one?   I will sometimes purchase more than I need on some items when the price is rock bottom because my family uses so much of that item.  For example, if I can get toilet paper for pennies, or a medicine that we use tons of, or laundry supplies, I will buy all that I can.  These are items that I use consistently and use a ton of them.  So for me, it makes good sense to buy all that I can, knowing that  it will all get used before the expiration date (if there is one).  Most sales are every 12 weeks.  But there are super sales that only come once a year.  And when that happens, you have to grab one years worth at one time or during one week.

Now, where some folks get into trouble is not knowing the difference between stockpiling and hording.  When you stockpile, you want to store enough items to last until the next sale rolls around.  I always pick up extra items because of college kids, their friends, their boyfriend and girlfriend, and my nieces and nephews that visit my home, and donations.  I am always giving away some of my stockpile.  If you know that peanut butter is going to rock bottom every 12 weeks, then you need to calculate how much peanut butter your family uses in 12 weeks and how much you are planning to donate or give away.........and then buy accordingly.  That is the art of stockpiling.  Hording is buying 200 jars of peanut butter and stocking them away (usually where no one can see or find them) because you have an overwhelming desire to "grab all that you can".   It would take several years to eat that much peanut butter and by that time they would be rancid.  I saw a video of a woman who had recently purchased close to 200 boxes of cereal for her family of 3.  That is a case of hording. 

So, when you are out there shopping, pick up what your family needs and what you are able to donate and give away, but keep it in perspective.

Target 101

Posted by caringwithcoupons on June 15, 2010 at 11:36 AM Comments comments (0)

 TARGET



They accept 2 kinds of coupons….manufacturer and Target issued coupons.


They accept one Target and one manufacturer coupon for the same item, unless either coupon prohibits it.  Some cashiers do not understand this policy and won’t allow it.  ALWAYS bring your Target coupon policy with you to the store in case of a dispute.


They can’t give cash back if the face value of a coupon is greater than the purchase price of the item; in that case, they will adjust the value of the coupon to equal the price of the item. New cashiers do not understand how to adjust the price down and as a result will tell you that they cannot accept the coupon. You will need to call the manager and show the Target coupon policy if necessary.


They do NOT accept coupons from other retailers or coupons for products not carried in their stores.


They will price match as long as you present the entire current sales flyer from the store you are matching.  They will not price match for an item that gives rewards as part of the deal such as ECB's from CVS or RR's from Walgreens. If you plan on price matching, be sure to stop in at customer service.    There are some Targets that will not allow a coupon in conjunction with a price match.  Even though this policy is not found on the stores official policy sheet,  there's nothing you can do if the manager tells  you no.


You can find store as well as manufacturer internet printable coupons on their site......target.com


All valid coupons must be presented to the cashier at the time of sale. 


Tax is calculated before coupons.


**Always carry the Target CouponPolicy with you. Many of the cashiers and managers do not understand coupon usage. You will occasionally run into a cashier or manager who will tell you that you cannot combine a store coupon with a manufacturer’s coupon.  So have that policy on hand!

 


CVS 101

Posted by caringwithcoupons on June 15, 2010 at 10:40 AM Comments comments (0)

CVS is one of my favorite stores to shop at because it is so easy to use the Extra Care Bucks (ECB's) and coupons. I have never had one problem shopping at CVS.  But just like any other store, you must know the rules and policies in order to get the most out of your shopping experience.

The first thing that you want to do is to sign-up for an Extra Care Card.  Once you receive the card in the mail, sign-up on line to earn extra perks and coupons.


Each week, CVS offers promotional items that give rewards called "Extra Care Bucks".  These are printed at the bottom of your receipt.  As soon as I leave the store, I cut these Extra Care Bucks off the bottom of my receipt and place in my binder.  It is so easy to forget about them or lose them when they are still attatched to the receipt.  Now, you can use these extra care bucks to pay for anything in the store excluding  prescriptions, gift cards, tobacco products, alcohol, stamps, and milk. 

Never leave your Extra Care Bucks in the sun or heat.  They will turn black and will not be replaced.

Purchase a "leaf" near the register for $0.99.  For every 4th scan, you will earn a $1 Extra Care Buck.  The "leaf" is to promote using recycled bags.  If you scan your leaf, you will not be given a plastic bag so be sure to bring in your own bags.  You can scan your leaf once per day with a purchase.  It will not scan if you are not buying something and you won't earn more than $1 ECB per day just because you are having the cashier scan it several times.  The rule is one scan per day per purchase.

For every 2 prescriptions filled, you will earn a $1 ECB.  Be sure to show your Extra Care Card when picking up your prescriptions to ensure that you get credit toward your Extra Care Bucks.

In addition, you will earn 2% of your non-prescrition purchases in the form of quarterly ECB's.  Every 3 months, you will find extra ECB's at the bottom of your receipt.  You can use the quarterly ECB's in the store or on-line.

Every now and then, CVS offers "Double ECB's".  Keep a look out for this special in their Sunday Sales Flyer.  

Your ECB's are tied to your card.  If your husband has a card, he cannot use your Extra Care Bucks toward a purchase.  The computer won't scan them.

Be sure to sign up on line for extra perks and store coupons.

Unlike Walgreens, you can use your Extra Care Bucks to pay for the same item you just purchased unless there is a limit of (1).  If the limit is (2), you can take the Extra Care Bucks from your first purchase to pay for your second.

And finally, be sure to scan your Extra Care Card at the CVS Kiosk or cash register when first arriving at the store.  The machine or register will print out coupons for you to use on your shopping trip that day.

Walgreens 101

Posted by caringwithcoupons on June 14, 2010 at 6:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Walgreens can be a wonderful store to shop at if you know the rules and policies.  If you don't know all of the ins and outs of the store, you could find yourself running to your car crying.  Been there, done that.  So, to help you out, here is a little Walgreens 101 to help you with your shopping experience at Walgreens.


 

 

 

 

WAGREENS REGISTER REWARDS

These are manufacturer coupons that are printed using the same Catalina machines that some grocery stores use.  They are Walgreens specific coupons. Register Rewards are actually coupons given by the manufacturers of the products that are on special that week.  For example,you purchase Suave shampoo and a $1 Register Rewards prints out separately from your receipt. This Register Reward is provided by the manufacturer.  When you turn around and use your RegisterReward, Walgreens will then submit that coupon to the manufacturer and get reimbursed.  Be sure to write the name of  the product you purchased on the Register Reward!!

Register Rewards are linked to specific products each week.  Sometimes you only need to buy one item, sometimes it is for buying a certain amount of product.

You can use your Register Reward to purchase the same product again but if you do, a new Register Reward will not print. You can“roll” your Register Rewards by using them on a different Register Rewarddeal.  You have to be careful not to use the Register Reward on an item made by the same manufacturer.  Even though it should work, most of the time it does not.  So, pick an item from a  different manufacturer.  Register Rewardsexpire between 2-3 weeks.  Because of the short expiration date, divide your purchases into groups.  Use the RR’s (Register Rewards) from the first transaction to pay for the second, etc. 

 

 

 

TIPS

Walgreens only accepts the number of coupons as items.  If you have more coupons than items, you will need to purchase inexpensive fillers such as cheap pencils or candy. Divide your purchases so that each transaction contains only one deal producing a RR.Count your items to make sure you have the same number of items as coupons. If your first transaction yields a RR for shampoo, use the RR’s toward your second transaction for deodorant (different manufacturer).You can stack 1 manufacturer coupon with 1 Walgreen store coupon per item.  Just remember you must have the same number of items as coupons.  In this instance, you would have 2 coupons and one item so you would need a filler item.  At Walgreens, everything counts as a coupon (manufacturer, store, and Register Rewards).  The only coupon that does not count as a coupon is the coupon found in the Walgreens Sunday Flyer.  This merely sets the price of the sale item.  Also, you can have more products than coupons.  You just can't present more coupons than products.   When getting started at Walgreens, keep your deals simple......one per transaction.  Eventually, you will feel at ease shopping in the store and can add more items to your shopping trip.


Walgreens discontinued the Easy Saver Rebate program. If you read about it in a blog, realize that this is old information

 


Rite Aid 101

Posted by caringwithcoupons on June 14, 2010 at 6:11 PM Comments comments (2)

I have gotten qutie a few questions this week concerning Rite Aid Policy and SCR (single check rebate).  So here is a little RIte Aid 101 to help you with your shopping this week.



RITE AID

They accept manufacturers coupons found in newspapers.

They accept manufacturer coupons found in the Rite Aid circular.

They accept internet coupons that contain the Rite Aid name and logo.

They accept 4 internet printable coupons per day.

They will NOT accept internet coupons for free items.

They will accept coupons for clearance items as long as the coupon is not for a higher dollar amount than the clearance item.

BOGO at Rite Aid means buy one full price and get the second one free. In this case, you would use one coupon.  However, some cashiers let you use two.


Rite Aid offers single check rebates (SCR).  These rebates are offered for weekly and monthly sale items.  The amount of the rebate is not affected by coupon usage.  If you paid $2.00 for a product after using coupons but the single check rebate is for $3.00, you will still earn the $3.00 rebate. Fill out your rebate information on-line as soon as you can.  However, do not hit the submit button.  Each time you purchase rebate items, enter the receipt information and save.  On the last day of the month, or up until 4 days into the new month, send your rebate information to Rite Aid.  You are allowed one submission per month.  Your check will arrive within 2-3 weeks.  If you send the rebate by mail, it will take 6-8 weeks.



Here is how I shop at Rite Aid:


 I send off the month's single check rebates a few days before the end of the month on-line.  I receive my check in about 2+ weeks.  I cash the check and place the money in an envelope.  I use this money at Rite Aid to purchase more items giving Single Check Rebates.  I am basically rolling my money in the store from month to month.  It's easier for me to shop this way.  I know how much I have to spend each month and I just keep using it over and over again.


Happy Shopping!

Homemade Pancake Syrup

Posted by caringwithcoupons on February 24, 2010 at 4:59 PM Comments comments (1)


A few weeks back, I decided to make pancakes but  realized that I was out of pancake syrup.  I did not have time to run to the store and I was wearing my pj's and not willing to change clothes, make-up.........you know how that goes.  So, I decided to make homemade.  I went on-line and eventually found a recipe.  I wasn't sure if it would even resemble store bought  but I was out of time and had to make a decision.  Well, it took about 1-2 minutes to put together, another 10-15 to cook.  I was shocked at the taste.  It was very similiar to store bought.  Now granted, this isn't anything like real maple syrup.  It resembles a syrup like aunt Jemimah.  Once made, you can store it in a plastic container, jar, or an old syrup container.  So, give it a try.  I think you will be surprised!



Homemade Pancake Syrup


Mix:


1 cup sugar

1 cup brown sugar

1/4 tsp. vanilla

1/4 tsp maple x-tract

1 cup water

several tablespoons of butter



Place all ingredients in a saucepan and place on medium - medium high heat on stove.

Cook until it boils, stirring constantly. Be careful not to burn. Once it boils cut the heat down to low and simmer 10-15 minutes.  Be sure to stir.  Cook until thick.


That's all there is to it!  Cheap and easy!   You can serve this with the homemade butter recipe I wrote about in an earlier blog.  Enjoy!








For The Newbies, How To Read The Deals

Posted by caringwithcoupons on February 24, 2010 at 4:55 PM Comments comments (0)

How To Read The Deals-- For The Newbies

 

Posted Feb. 22, 2010

 

 

*I transferred this article from my home page.  In the process some of the words ran together.  When I get a little time, I will come back and seperate the words.



Ifyou are a newbie to couponing, understanding coupon terminology can beover whelming.  In my, and other posts, you will see lines that readlike:

 

SS2  7/12  Kellogs Mini Wheats   BOGO  Use  -1.50/1

 OR

Buy (1) Kellogg's Mini Wheats on sale BOGO

 

Use:  -$1.50 from 7/12 SS

 

EachSunday, you will find  coupon circulars within the  paper.  Thesecirculars are printed by Red Plum, Smart Source, Unilever, Proctor& Gamble, etc.  It takes a great deal of time to type up a deal socouponers use a sort of short hand. 

 Each week when youreceive your Sunday paper, pull out the coupon inserts.  On the frontof each one, mark that days date in pen.  For example, this past Sundaywas February 21, 2010.  So on the front of each one of the couponinserts that you received, write  Feb. 20, 2010.

Now,when you come to my site and see a deal written as above, it is tellingyou to go to the 7/12 (July 12) SmartSource coupon insert and you willfind a $1.50 coupon for Kelloggs Mini Wheats.  Cut it out to take tothe store for the deal.  Next I have put BOGO.  This means that this isa Buy 1 Get 1 deal at that grocery store.  Following this, you will see$1.50/1.  This means that the coupon is for $1.50 off of one product.

Eachweek you can receive a variety of coupon inserts from differentcompanies.  I use an abbreviation for each one to cut down on typingtime.  

 

SS   Smart Source

P&G  Proctor and Gamble

KG  Kelloggs

RP   Red Plum

 Ifthere is a 1 or 2 following one of the abbreviations above, it meansthat there were (2) of that particular insert in the paper.  Forexample, if you receive (2) Smart Source, then you would mark one SS1and the other SS2.

 See how easy that was? 

If you are still confused, please e-mail me at  [email protected]    and I will do my best to clarify.  Dawn

 


How to make homemade Butter

Posted by caringwithcoupons on January 27, 2010 at 10:35 PM Comments comments (3)

 

How To Make Your Own Butter for around $.19!

Posted Jan. 26, 2010

 

 

Ok,so many of you don't know me or the fact that I feel like a  pioneerwoman re-incarnated, or should have been (even though I love LizClaiborne, Bath and Body, and Belks!) .  I love learning the old waysof surviving such as cooking in the fireplace, making homemade soap,etc.  Well, I have never made the soap but it is on my list of todo's!  As you probably guessed by now, I was one of those crazy folksstocked up at Y-2K.....what a joke now.  I still have my book full ofHow-to's in case the world as we knew it ended. But hey, I can tell youhow to disinfect water, catch fish with twines and twigs, and makecandles.

We have all lost the knowledge of how tosurvive without the luxuries we can now afford.  I love to makehomemade jam from 100 year old recipes, I love to cook in the fireplacewith skills that I learned from Old Salem, and I can even bake in aboyscout oven made out of cardboard and duct tape (and yes, you can useduct tape for just about anything!). You may laugh at my cardboard oven(which by the way I still have and use), but when my oven exploded, Iwas able to cook lasagna, chicken casserole, and meatloaf in myhomemade oven until the new one arrived.  The neighborhood kids had somuch fun in my driveway as I showed them how.  We even bakedcookies......the kids just loved that!  So, it is no surprise that Iwould become giddy over the prospect of making home made butter.  Ihave an antique butter churn so when I first ran across thesedirections, I thought surely I would have to sit at that old churn allday to get one tablespoon of butter (you know your grandparents had todo it that way).   How thankful I was to learn that I could use mymixer!!  Woo-----now I am thankful for all those kitchen appliances ourforefathers could not have dreamed of!  I guess I am quite content inthis day and age after all!

The next time you finda super sale on heavy cream, buy some and try this recipe.  It is agreat way to cut your monthly expenses, get fresh butter, and a way toinclude your kids in some mommie and me  time.

 

 

 

Homemade Butter

Makes 16 ounces of butter

6 cups organic heavy cream (I used one pint)

Salt to taste (optional)

1.Pour the cream into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk.Tightly cover the top of the bowl with plastic wrap and start mixer onmedium-high speed. The cream will go through the whipped stage, thickenfurther and then change color from off-white to pale yellow; this willtake at least 5 to 8 minutes. When it starts to look pebbly, it’salmost done. After another minute the butter will separate, causing theliquid to splash against the plastic wrap. At this point stop the mixer.

2.Set a strainer over a bowl. Pour the contents of the mixer into thestrainer and let the buttermilk drain through. Strain the buttermilkagain, this time through a fine-mesh sieve set over a small bowl; setaside.

3. Keeping the butter in the strainer set over the firstbowl, knead it to consolidate the remaining liquid and fat and expelthe rest of the buttermilk. Knead until the texture is dense andcreamy, about 5 minutes. Strain the excess liquid into the buttermilk.Refrigerate the buttermilk.

4. Mix salt into the butter, if you want. Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate.

 


Homemade Mechanic's & Gardeners Soap

Posted by caringwithcoupons on January 17, 2010 at 11:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Here's How:

Fill an empty container with dish soap – enough for one hand washing or enough to wash your hands many times. The choice is yours.Then, add corn meal to the soap – just a sprinkle for a small batch and as much as a tablespoon for a big batch.Stir the mixture up, and rub a bit between your fingers to test the grittiness. Add corn meal (if needed) until you reach the right consistency. Use immediately, or store in an air-tight container for future use.


What You Need:

Dish soap

Corn meal

An empty container

Homemade Shoe Polish

Posted by caringwithcoupons on January 17, 2010 at 10:56 AM Comments comments (0)

 Here's how to make a top-rate shoe polish from things that you already have at home:


INGREDIENTS:Olive oilLemon juice


PREPARATION:

1. Combine one part lemon juice to two parts olive oil to form a polish.

2. Use a clean cloth to rub a small amount of the polish into your shoes. Then, allow it to soak in for a few minutes.

3. Buff with another cloth, and enjoy your shiny shoes!


Benefits of Using Homemade Shoe Polish:

Inexpensive

Cchemical-free

Environnmentally-friendly

All-natural


Tips and Warnings:

1) Apply to clean, dry shoes

2) Repeat monthly or as needed to extend the life of your leather shoes

3) Cheap olive oil works just as well as more expensive grades


Stainless Steel Cleaner

Posted by caringwithcoupons on January 17, 2010 at 10:53 AM Comments comments (0)

What You Need:

White vinegar

An empty spray bottle

A cleaning cloth


What You Do:

Fill a spray bottle with undiluted white vinegar. Then, spray on all of your stainless steel surfaces, and wipe dry with a soft cleaning cloth. Simple and effective!


Why This Works:The acetic acid in the vinegar cuts through the oil left behind by fingertips, rather than smearing it around like a lot of other cleaners.

 


How To Make Homemade Hand Sanitizer

Posted by caringwithcoupons on January 17, 2010 at 10:46 AM Comments comments (0)



What You Need:


2/3 cup Isopropyl alcohol 91%

1/3 cup aloe vera gel Essential oil in your choice of fragrance (optional)

A bowl and spoon

An empty container


 

 

Tips:

Manyessential oils like tea tree oil and lavender have antibacterial properties. Use one of these to boost the germ-zapping power of your hand sanitizer.Save the bottles from store-bought hand sanitizer, and refill them again and again.A littlegoes a long way with this recipe. Once applied, just rub your hands together until the moisture evaporates and the stickiness vanishes



Mix the aloe vera and Isopropyl alcohol together until well blended.Add 8-10 drops of essential oil to the mixture for fragrance (if desired), and stir well.Pour the finished hand sanitizer into an empty container and seal.

Contains 65% Alcohol

 


My Day With A Homeless Man

Posted by caringwithcoupons on August 24, 2009 at 10:18 AM Comments comments (4)

My Day With A Homeless Man.....

 

           

 

 

Yesterday was a very special day; the day that my family was to spend atCarowinds..  We usually take a second vacation before school starts. But with so much going  on, we decided to  spend the day at anamusement park instead.  That morning, I made the decision not to go. It was going to be extremely hot and I just did not think that I was upfor the trip.  But even more, I had a feeling that I was supposed tostay behind.  So, I waved goodbye as my family drove away.  There wasno way of knowing what today had in store for me.  I decided to goshopping for deals.  I had my trip all planned out, coupons ready togo, sunglasses in hand........I was ready to walk out the door......when I received a call about a homeless man that needed help.  Hewas living in a tent and had no food.  I put my coupons away andstarted gathering food for this man. It didn't take long to realizethat everything  in my pantry needed a microwave or oven to heat.  So,off to Aldis I went.  Besides canned goods, I purchased fruit, andcarrots so that his meals would be somewhat balanced. I loaded up thecar and then headed to Hardees  to pick up an extremely large lunch forthis man.  

 

Michael is a fairly young man around 40-45. He lost his job 2 years ago and hasn't been able to find work since. He has lost everything. Another church in town found him sleeping oncardboard and gave him a small, one man tent.  They also gave him  aplastic table and a bucket to sit on.  He had a pillow but noblankets.  He had nothing to eat or drink.   I sat and talked withMichael in 90+ temperatures. As he told his story, sweat ran down hisface and neck.  His hair was soaked.  There was no place for him toescape the heat.  Michael had been to the hospital last night.  He wasdiagnosed with bronchitis and a urinary tract infection. He had fallenearlier into a hole and had injured  his knee. He could barely walk andwas in obvious pain.  The hospital released him last night because hewas homeless and could not pay.  They gave him prescriptions knowingthat he could not pay for them.

  I bought him a cooler andfilled with ice.  I bought him a chair so that he would not have to siton a bucket.  He was so protective of the food and drinks that hedecided to store it all in the tent.  He would  sleep outside on  acardboard mat..

 

My heart has been very burdened since Ireturned home.  There are so many struggling folks out there.  I knowbecause I help several a week. My purpose for starting Caring WithCoupons was to help the needy and to get others involved.  It hasbecome too big of a job for me alone.   I would like you all to becomeinvolved in this ministry  with me..  Think of what can be accomplishedif we all make a commitment to help those among us who are hungry andpoor.  It is not just adults like Michael.  There are children who aregoing hungry.  Mothers who have nothing to feed their families.  Whenyou are out shopping and getting food or toiletries free or for littlemoney, won't you consider donating to my church's pantry so that we canhelp some of these people? 

 

You can drop off at Main Street Baptist Church on Main Street in Kernersville.  The phone number is 993-4534.

 

 

AsI drove away, I could see Micheal in my rear view mirror, sitting onhis bucket,.....all alone.  Of course, I cried all the way home.  Wenever understand the difficulties of others until we witness them first hand. Never underestimate your ability to help 

 

.

God bless, Dawn

 


U-Promise Free Money For College

Posted by caringwithcoupons on August 24, 2009 at 10:16 AM Comments comments (1)

$5 FREE + Free money for college!

 

$5 FREE + Free money for college! You can get $5 FREE, plus free money for college for you or for your children!

Now through September 30, enter promo code DOMINOS5 to get a $5 FREE Welcome Bonus at UPromise.com.What is UPromise?

 

UPromise.comis totally FREE to sign up for and totally free to use. It is a greatway to turn everyday purchases into college savings, either foryourself or your children! According to the UPromise website, "Everytime you make an eligible purchase, our partners return a portion ofthat money back to you. Those earnings accumulate in your Upromiseaccount until you decide to use it to invest in a 529 plan, help paydown eligible student loans or assist with college expenses—alltax-free!"

 

So, you get cashback up to 25% on your purchases, to use for college expenses (you can even use the cash back to pay off your own student loans)!!These are purchases you are already making anyway! You link a credit ordebit card to your free UPromise account, and every time you make apurchase at a qualified merchant, the cashback automatically goes intoyour UPromise account! You can alsolink up credit cards of other family members (with their permission),such as grandma or grandpa's credits cards! Grandma and grandpa willfeel great knowing that the every day purchases they already make canhelp towards their grandkids' college expenses!

Tonsof companies are part of this program, including McDonald's, Target,ExxonMobil, and eBay, just to name a few! That means when you shop atany of these places, you get FREE MONEY FOR COLLEGE!!! You are reallymissing out if you are not part of this program yet! UPromise evenoffer exclusive free couponsthat you can load directly onto your grocery store loyalty card(Kroger, Publix, etc.)!! They have new coupons every month, which helpyou save even more money at your favorite stores!***Also,VERY IMPORTANT, when you sign up for UPromise, be sure to register yourcredit card, debit card and/or grocery cards that you plan to use withthe program as soon as you sign up! If you do not register your cardswith the program, you will not be able to earn cashback! So registerthem while you are signing up, so you don't miss out on any cashbackfrom the start! You will be kicking yourself later if you don't!!!!

 

 

You can sign up FREE here: UPromise.com (remember to use code DOMINOS5)

 

Thanks Frugal Financing for the info! Also, some people have reported the $5 free credit may take up to a week to show in your Upromise account. 



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