Favado #ResolutionSolution ($100 Visa Gift Card Giveaway)

Disclosure:  Favado and Savings.com are providing the $100 Visa Gift Card for this giveaway.  All thoughts and opinions are always my own!

I resolve to spend less

I’ve talked a few times about Favado–the new grocery shopping app that makes it easier to find bargains at your local store.  If you have a smartphone, I hope you’ve tried it out–it can definitely help you save at the grocery store.  (You can see my post about how to use Favado here.)

download favado

I’m excited to be teaming up with Favado to share about their newest campaign #ResolutionSolutions. Plus, Favado and Savings.com are giving away a $100 Visa Gift Card to one of you!

 

Here is more info about Favado:

“So you blew your budget last year. Well, it’s 2014 – your chance for a fresh start and to stick to your budget again in the new year.

Favado, your friendly neighborhood grocery savings mobile app from Savings.com, can help you do just that.

Personalized just for you, the Favado money-saving app will help you keep your resolution to save on groceries this year with step-by-step weekly goals from the best money-saving brains in the business. It’s the solution to keeping your 2014 resolution!”

If you want to learn more, you can also check out the Weekly Twitter Parties!  They will be held each Tuesday evening at 9 PM ET. 

Week #1 (Jan 7-14) – Smarter Grocery Shopping Habits 

The first week, we’ll be talking mostly about the little habits you can change while shopping that can make a big difference in your grocery spending…such as not buying the magazines off the rack at the checkout, writing a grocery list and sticking to it while shopping, as well as checking unit prices and sale expiration dates.

Favado Helps by…allowing you to have a shopping list in the palm of your hand that you won’t forget at home!

Week #2 (Jan 15-21) – Shopping the Sales and Following the Sales Cycles

Grocery stores and manufacturers work hard to push out their best sale prices to you on a weekly basis through their store circulars. If you follow along closely, you’ll notice that most products operate on an 8-12 week sales cycle.

You’ll also find that “product families” all go on sale at the same time, for example all the P&G products will be discounted the same weeks, and will return to their regular prices for a few weeks, then go back on sale together.

Favado Helps by…showing you when your favorite products go on sale, so that you can purchase them when they are on sale and not have to pay full price in between sales cycles. Over time, you’ll learn how much to purchase to last you until the next sale.

Week #3 (Jan 22-28) – Couponing for “Double the Discount” 

The deep 50-70% savings that you hear talked about frequently occur when you combine a coupon with an already discounted product for “double the discount.” For example if toothpaste is on sale for $1 and you have a $.75 off coupon, you’ll get that toothpaste for just $.25, as opposed to its $2.49 regular price.

Favado Helps by…doing all the hard work for you and putting the best sale prices with matching available coupons in a nice, organized list. Favado makes it easy to find these discounts and save big on groceries.

Week #4 (Jan 29-Feb 5) – Meal Planning

Making a meal plan based on what’s on sale in your local grocery stores can help you cut your grocery bill by 20-30% alone. Matching your meals with the sales is a simple, scissorless way to save each week at the grocery store.

Favado Helps by…allowing you to search for ingredients that are on sale for the meals you want to make each week. Want to make a slow cooker meal that calls for boneless skinless chicken thighs or beef roast? Favado can tell you which store has those ingredients on sale each week.

 

Because of how we’ve changed our eating, I don’t use coupons quite as much anymore (although I still use them for home and personal type products–and some foods when I can find good ones).  I am still keeping our budget lowered by using menu-planning and stockpiling though.  You can find out more about our journey at FaithfullyNourished.com.

Resolution Solution Plan My Meals

Now for my favorite part!  One of you will win a $100 Visa Gift Card!  Simply fill out the form below to be entered to win!  The winner will be selected Monday, January 13 at 10 PM.

FREE Printable 2014 Calendar (Chore, Household & Life Management Planner)

FREE 2014 Calendar Planner

This is a nice freebie!  Over on The Confident Mom, you can find a printable 2014 weekly life and home management calendar with chore planner and room for menu-planning.  If you are starting your planning for the new year…this is a cute FREE 2014 calendar planner to use! 

If you want to build a complete home management notebook, you can also purchase a special supplement pack for just $5.  Use the code KIT3 at check-out (scroll-down to the bottom to find it) to get the deal.

The Weekly Household Planner Supplement includes the following digital fill-in forms:

  • Master Family Planner. Keep track of the entire family’s activities on a daily/weekly basis all in one convenient place.
  • Special Occasion Calendar/Gift Planner. You’ll always be prepared for the next birthday or special occasion.
  • Holiday Gift Planner Worksheet. Keep track of your holiday shopping list and purchases and what still needs wrapped or delivered. Never forget that well-hidden gift again!
  • Babysitter Information Form. This form makes it easy to provide your sitter with all the information he or she needs so you can relax and enjoy your time away.
  • Quick Contacts. Helps you keep important emergency contacts available for easy reference when you need them in a hurry as well as frequently used numbers.
  • Family Emergency/Medical Information Form. Record your family’s medical and insurance information on this form—it will be easy to find and share with those that need it.
  • Website/App List for Kids. An easy way your kids can list the websites they want to visit, or apps or songs they want to buy. This gives you a chance to review first and make sure the content is age appropriate!
  • Website/App List for Me. A place to record websites you want to visit or apps you want to buy during your downtime.
  • Account Keeper Sheet. Keep track of online accounts, including usernames and passwords. Never get locked out of your account again!
  • Weekly Menu Planner/Shopping List. Plan your means for the week so you arrive at the store prepared and don’t over-purchase.
  • NEW—Let’s Plan a Party Form. An easy way to keep track of party planning details such as guest list, menu, party favors, and activities.
  • NEW—Bible Bookmarks. Use these monthly reading bookmarks with suggested reading each day of the month, enabling you to read the entire bible in a year.

Just a reminder that you can get the printable 2014 planner for free.  You can also add the supplemental home management forms (which are editable) for just $5 with the code KIT3!

10 Last Minute (& I Mean Last Minute!) Christmas Gift Ideas

Last Minute Christmas Gift Ideas

Here we are–one day before Christmas!  Honestly, I’m sure all of you don’t really need this. I know you are an organized, on-top-of-things bunch…but just in case there is someone you forgot on your list, here are ten gifts that you can easily (and quickly) get today without much stress!

1) Give a crafty (or non-crafty) person a chance to hone their skills with an online class at Craftsy (today only they are up to 50% off).

2) If you gave this to me, you would be my best friend forever! No, really, this one is a little more expensive–but it has a ton of great benefits. You can gift a year’s subscription of Amazon Prime and give someone the gift of free two-day shipping, a free Kindle book loan every month, free Prime Streaming of TV and movies.

3) A magazine subscription makes a great gift. Pick up one copy at the store and attach a card that let’s them know they are getting a year’s subscription! You can find a cute printable for a magazine subscription gift here. You can also find magazines up to 90% off on Amazon today.

4) iTunes offer gift cards in various increments sent to your recipient’s email address! You can also gift albums or songs.

5) Have a book lover on your list? Amazon lets you give Kindle books as gifts.

6) If your recipient’s city is one of the sites for daily deals from Groupon, a Groupon Gift card would be a great (and easy) gift idea!

7) If you have crafty kiddos, a monthly subscription to KiwiCrate would be fun! It would be a little like Christmas each month when the box of crafts showed up at the door.

8) Now this might not be too exciting for some people–but I would love this! Anything that makes my life a little easier is a great gift to me!  You can give either a six-month or 1-year gift certificate subscription to eMeals. You can see what I think about it in My Six Ways I’m Organizing My Life and Home post.

9) Concert or event tickets are nice non-cluttery gifts. You can order online or over the phone and make up a little card (here are some printable gift cards and holders).

10) The all-encompassing gift for anything on someone’s list–The Amazon Gift Card. You can either email it or print a special card at home. You can even upload a photo and make a card to print with the code in it.

Do you have a favorite last-minute gift idea?  Please share to help out our procrastinating friends!  :)

My Tour of ALDI Headquarters…and Why I Now Shop at ALDI

In October….before my life went completely out-of-control (which is why it has taken me so long to get this post up!), I had the opportunity to head just outside of Chicago to the ALDI Corporate Headquarters.  I was able to sit in on a food styling class, a food photography class, and a tour of an ALDI store, and it completely changed my thinking about the store.

Let me tell you a little bit about my background with ALDI.  Back when John was in vet school, we shopped at ALDI quite a bit.  It was a great place for us since money was tight, but after we moved, there wasn’t an ALDI anywhere around us.  I kind of forgot all about them…

Over the past few years, I’ve heard quite a bit more about ALDI and several of my blogging friends shop there, but since the closest one is about an hour away, I never went out of my way to go there.  I think I maybe even harbored an aversion to it–just because I related it to that very difficult financial time in my life!

But no more.

If you've ever wanted to save money on your grocery bill without clipping coupons, ALDI is a great place to shop.  Here's what you need to know about shopping there...

The store we went to outside of Chicago was beautiful, and I learned so much about how they keep the prices low and quality high. You can find out a little bit about how they do that here.

ALDI Taste Test Challenge

The day before the tour, we actually did a blind taste test of various products and I picked the ALDI brand as my preference about 2/3 of the time.  The tastes compared to “name brands” were very similar, but the ALDI prices were so much cheaper!

ALDI Organic Line

I was also excited to see some natural and organic products.  It sounds like they will be rolling these out to most stores in 2014.

ALDI Organic Produce

Organic produce is available, too!

ALDI Coffee K-Cups

If you purchase K-Cups, you know they can be a bit pricey.  ALDI has the lowest prices I’ve seen on them.  I don’t have a Keurig, but if I did, I would definitely purchase them at ALDI!

ALDI Store Tour

The week after my trip, I headed up to my closest ALDI store and did some shopping–just to see how it compared to the store we went to in Illinois.  It was way nicer than I remembered the stores being when I shopped them 9+ years ago!  I picked up quite a bit of produce (the “Special Buy” on pomegranates was amazing that week–like $.39!!), a few gluten-free products, and a few organic items.  I was super-impressed with what I got for the price…and I didn’t even have to worry about clipping coupons! 

Let me say that again.  I was super-impressed with what I got for the price…AND I DIDN’T EVEN HAVE TO CLIP COUPONS!!!

Shopping at Aldi

There are a few unique things you should know about shopping at ALDI:

1)  You pay a deposit (a quarter) for the shopping cart.  Once you return it, your quarter pops back out!

2)  The “shelves” are actually specially designed boxes that stack on each other.  This is a time (and money) saver for the company since they don’t have to hire as many people to stock shelves.

2)  You’ll need to bring your own bags–they don’t offer plastic bags.

3)  They don’t take credit cards–you’ll need to bring cash or a debit card.

5)  Be sure to check out the “Special Buys”.  You can save a ton of money with them!

Overall, my trip was amazing!  I was inspired to start shopping at ALDI again and have now added them to my must-stop store list when I head to the *big town*.  I just load up my cooler, check out the weekly deals, go shopping…and save a ton of money.

If you have an ALDI near you, I highly recommend checking them out!

Beyond Compare Brussel Sprouts

On a side note, we had these Beyond Compare Brussels Sprouts on the trip, and they are amazing!  I later made them at home and the girls (and even John) ate them up!  You can also find them on page 11 of The Happier Holidays Recipe Book from ALDI!  The print version is in stores.

Disclaimer: ALDI sponsored my trip to Chicago to participate in this event.  I am thrilled to participate with them and happy to share with you another way you can save on groceries and get more for your money (I’ve found that to be true just from my past few visits to the store)!  All opinions are my own.