Monday, September 6, 2010

Thin Soup - Things are Changing

Ok - I'm really writing this post.

I have been thinking and praying about this decision for weeks.

I am at peace and know this is the decision I needed to make.

I will no longer be posting on Penny Pinching Penguin.

Well, mostly stop.

I may post occasionally.  I am not ready to say it's completely over.  I will link to past articles through Rediscovering Domesticity.

I will continue the Bloggy Basics and Money Minute on Rediscovering Domesticity.


I need to focus on my family more.  I've been feeling like thin soup.  Now that I have 2 little ones, I hardly have time to plan a good bargain shopping trip let alone stay up on all the hot deals.  My heart just isn't in shopping anymore (it is so hard doing multiple stores in one day with carseats and naptimes).  I am trying to pinch pennies in other ways and will explore those on Rediscovering Domesticity.

I had mentioned about writing an ebook about saving money in every room of the house.  Many of you have submitted ideas for the book.  It will still happen!  I will offer it free on Rediscovering Domesticity when it is finished.

Thank you all for coming along side me while I learned how to save money and while I learned how this whole blogging thing worked!  Come on over to Rediscovering Domesticity.  Check it out.

Happy Labor Day!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Scripture Sunday - A Few Drops of Proverbs

 photo credit mine

The Proverbs are FULL of wisdom including wisdom about money.  Take some time and chew on these scriptures.  Pray that the Lord open your heart as you read.

Proverbs 6:6-8
Go to the ant, sluggard; consider her ways and be wise; who having no guide, overseer, or ruler, provides her food in the summer and gathers her food in the harvest.
Proverbs 21:5
The thoughts of the diligent tend only to plenty; but the thoughts of everyone who is hasty only to poverty.

Proverbs 22:3
A prudent one foresees the evil and hides himself, but the simple pass on and are punished.

Proverbs 24:3-4
Through wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; and by knowledge the rooms shall be filled with all precious and pleasant riches.

Monday, August 30, 2010

The Grocery Game: Pros and Cons

Have you ever heard of The Grocery Game?  I had heard mention of it, but didn't think it would be of benefit to me.  Those on my bargain forums mentioned how they would never spend money when they get the same information through the forums.  A few friends mentioned that they used the Grocery Game and loved it.

Well, call me curious.

I had to give it a try.  I saw they had a free trial, so I decided to hop on board.  I made sure to register under a friend so she'd get credit and potential free weeks.  I started playing The Game.

What is it?
  • The Grocery Game is a paid service to help you save money on groceries at various stores.
  • A list is issued weekly with the items which are at their rock bottom prices plus the coupon match-ups for those items.
  • There are many stores with a list - check your area to see what stores are listed for you. I can get Kroger, Rite Aid, Target, CVS, and Giant Eagle.
 Why use it?
  • The list helps you purchase items at their lowest price. 
  • By stocking up at the lowest price, you save hundreds per year.
  • The hard work is done for you already.
 How much does it cost?
The cost for a 1 store membership is $10 every 8 weeks. That works out to about $1.25 per week. A 2 store membership is $15 every 8 weeks, a 3 store membership is $20 every 8 weeks and so on.
 So, did I like it?  What are the pros and cons?

  • The legwork is done for me
  • Saves me precious time when hunting deals
  • Does help to save money
  • Is a remedy for "mommy brain"
  • Has a nifty print feature so you can print just the items you intend to purchase
  • Has a coupon printing links
  • Must sign in to access list - not emailed to me (I actually forgot I had signed up for several weeks)
  • Is an auto-renew service so you must cancel before the next renew date (more on that later)
  • Prices are not 100% accurate for every area - my area tends to run $.10 - $.50 higher on just about all items on any list service, not just the Grocery Game.
  • Costs money
  • Works best if you have several weeks worth of coupon inserts saved already
Any Problems? Will I keep using it?  Do I recommend it?

I made one very deliberate shopping trip using my list.  If I hadn't made a mistake (user error!) by not counting my mega sale items accurately, I would have saved close to 75% on that trip by buying just the things on the list (not other essentials).  The list works.

I did have a problem.  I was using the free trial.  I increased my stores to just about all.  If it were a paid subscription, it would be $25 per cycle.  I marked the end date on my calendar.  We lost power.  We lost cable. We lost internet.  I forgot.  I didn't see my reminder and didn't cancel in time.  I was charged the $25.  When I finally remembered, I emailed Terri to try to get a refund.  Refunds are not possible, however, she downgraded my service to just one store and extended my time through December to  make up for my mistake.  I appreciated her willingness to work with me.

I will keep using the Grocery Game - it's paid through December!  I have a few months to find out exactly how much I can save using the game to see if I will pay for another cycle. 

As a busy mom, I no longer have the time to scour blogs and forums for every great deal.  The Grocery Game puts everything right at my fingertips.

If you would like to try the free 30-day trial, just click here.  You will need to enter credit card information.  I would greatly appreciate if you enter my email as your referral: penguinelk at (just format it like a normal email address).

Have you used the Grocery Game?  What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comments.

I am not an affiliate for the Grocery Game.  The opinions in the review are entirely mine.  I was not paid in any way to write this post.

Friday, August 27, 2010

10 Ways to Save Money in the Kitchen - Guest Posted on Frugally Marisha

I feel so loved!  Frugally Marisha graciously asked me to write a guest post for her blog!  How exciting is that!  I decided to begin a series on her blog and continue it here.  I began in the kitchen.

In an effort to write an eBook (with a lot of help from you - check this past post!), I challenged myself to create a list of ways to save money in each room of the house.  My lists are by no means exhaustive.  That's where you come in.  Help me fill in the blanks and write a fantastic eBook which will, in turn, be offered FREE to all readers!

So, with that said, take a trip on over to Frugally MarishaCheck out my post.  Check out her blog!  Leave her some bloggy comment love!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Money Minute - 5 Quick Money Saving Tips

Have you ever wondered what little things around the house you could do to keep more green in your wallet?  I've got 5 quick tips for you. These have made a difference at our house!

  1. Plan It - Use the sales circular each week to plan out meals.  Buy just what you need and stick to it. I plan 2-3 extra meals per week in case our finicky taste buds decide they don't want what was planned. Menu planning alone has cut $50 - $75/month off our grocery budget.
  2. Unplug It - After charging electronics, unplug the cord.  To make this easier, try using a surge strip.  Plug electronics into surge strip.  When charged, unplug the whole surge strip rather than single electronics.
  3. Cut It - See where you can cut back with the amount you use.  Can you use just a little less shampoo each time? Can you use half the fabric softener? Can you use that razor just ONE more time?  It's amazing how much the little things add up.
  4. Hoof It - When you are shopping at open air malls or shopping plazas, park in a central location.  Make a quick trip back to the car between stores but don't move the car until it is just too far to walk.  Save on gas and wear on the car. Help your starter last a bit longer! Burn a few calories in the process.
  5. Maintain It - By spending a little to properly  maintain your vehicles and appliances, you will improve performance and efficiency, extend the life, and avoid expensive catastrophes.
How do you save money around the house?  Let me know in the comments!  I may use your tips in my upcoming eBook and I will give you credit and link to your blog!

This post is shared at We Are THAT Family as part of Works For Me Wednesday.  Check out more great tips there!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Scripture Sunday - Widow's Mite

I absolutely love this passage although it challenges me each time I read it.  Am I giving sacrificially?  What is the condition of my heart as I give?

Mark 12:40-44 (New International Version)

40They devour widows' houses and for a show make lengthy prayers. Such men will be punished most severely."
The Widow's Offering
 41Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. 42But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins,[a]worth only a fraction of a penny.[b]  43Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, "I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. 44They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on."

What do YOU take away from this verse?  Please share in the comments.


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