Cheap Mulch

Here are a few tips to save on landscaping this season.

Mulch with junk mail. JD over at Get Rich Slowly has an interesting post on using shredded paper to mulch your garden. I love this idea, you are saving money, making better use of all those annoying credit card offers, and recycling.

Plant perennials to save money. A perennial is categorized as a plant that lives at least three years. If you plant from seeds or a cutting you will save even more money. Investing in a plant that lives for several years is cheaper than replanting those annuals year after year.

Plant a vegetable garden in your yard. This might seem a little weird, but certain veggies look nice in flower beds. Last year we grew zucchini and watermelon in our front bed. You couldn’t tell it wasn’t just another plant until you looked closely.

Buy slightly torn bags of mulch, potting soil, fertilizer, and other items that are sold in bags. Some stores (like Lowes) give a 50% discount on torn bags, you just have to ask. They will even duct tape the bag for you at the check-out. ( A special thanks to my sister for the heads up on this one)

Make your own compost. There are many guides on the web explaining exactly how to do this so I won’t go into it here. This is a great way to recycle and help your plants at the same time.

What are some ways you save money on landscaping?

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Grocery Gathering~Commissary Deals Starting May 1

Don’t throw away your expired coupons…. military families stationed overseas can use coupons for up to six months after the expiration date. Are you stationed overseas and would like to receive expired coupons? Shoppers around the web want to support our troops by sending you their expired coupons. Email me at thehappyhousewife@comcast.net for all the details.

Save your pennies military shoppers, the case lot sale is coming in May. You can view the dates for the case lot sale for your commissary here.

Two Weeks of Commissary Deals staring May 1, 2008

note: I was at the Commissary last night and they had not listed any prices for the new sale period. I will update with prices as soon as I can.

A 1 Steak Sauce

Banquet Frozen Chicken Products

Betty Crocker Frosting

Betty Crocker Cake Mix

Betty Crocker Hamburger Helper 10 for $9

Birds Eye Frozen Corn on the Cob

Colgate Products

Cooper Shredded Cheese

Dial Soaps

Delmonte Green Beans

Gortons Fish Filets

Goya Beans

Fancy Feast Cat Food

French’s Mustard

Heinz Ketchup $1.29 36 oz

Heinz 57 $2.30 10oz

Heinz Hamburger Dill Chips $0.79 16oz / Sweet Relish $0.69 10oz

Hidden Valley Assorted Dressings

Hormel Bacon

Hunts BBQ Sauce

I Can’t Believe it’s not Butter

Ice Cream – Assorted Flavors from Breyers, Hagen Dazs and Dove

Jack Daniel Grilling Sauce $1.09 19 0z

Keebler Assorted Cookies and Crackers Grahams 16 oz. $1.89

Kelloggs Fruit Loops, Rice Krispies $1.99

Kelloggs Fruit Snacks

Kool Aid Powdered Drinks

Kraft Cheese Slices, Chunk Cheese

Lipton Noodles / Rice

Minute Maid Lemonade

Motts Applesauce

Mrs. Smith’s Pies

Muellers Noodles

Nabisco Assorted Cookies and Crackers

Northland Juice

Old El Paso Assorted Products

Oscar Meyer Hotdogs

Oscar Meyer Lunchables

Oscar Meyer Lunch Meat

Palmolive Dish Soap

Pam Cooking Spray

Pampers Baby Wipes / Diapers

Pompeian Olive Oil

Powerbars

Post Trail Mix Cereal

Purex Detergent

Quaker Oatmeal to Go

Wishbone Spritzer Dressings

Yoplait Strawberry Banana, Vanilla, $0.45 6 oz and Yo Plus Yogurt $1.49 16 oz

Do you know of a great Commissary deal this week? Email it to me at thehappyhousewife@comcast.net and I will post the deal and link back to your site.

Do you think shopping at the Commissary is worth your time? Check out my Commissary shopping tips here.

Important Note! Watch the screen as your groceries are rung up. I have noticed several price mistakes on my last few trips to the commissary. Make sure you are getting the prices they advertise and the deals you deserve!

The Grocery Gathering is hosted at BeCentsAble each Monday and Thursday. Head over to check out all the deals being covered and to join in the discussion!

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3 Moms ~ 3 Kitchens ~ 31 Days

Around the blog world there are daily posts by frugal bloggers showing off their best deals of the week. I love looking at the bargains people are getting, but sometimes I wonder, “Can they be living off free toothpaste, shampoo and cereal?” If you have ever wondered what an entire month of shopping looks like for someone who is probably just like you, trying to raise a family and save money on a limited budget, then you will love the adventure two of my blogger friends and I are about to begin

For the next thirty-one days you are invited into my kitchen. I will show you all of my menu planning, shopping trips, meals, and even some favorite recipes.

If you are not a regular reader of my blog, here is a little background information about me. I am a homeschooling mom of six kids, ages two to thirteen. We are a military family living in the D.C. area. Since the grocery prices out in town are very high, I do most of my shopping at the military commissary.

In my kitchen, my goals this month are to dramatically increase the amount of fruits and vegetables we are eating and continue to gradually wean ourselves from processed foods. I will be doing some of my shopping this month at a co-op and we will also be on vacation for part of the month so that should add an interesting twist to the budget, which is $600 for the month.

My two adventurous friends are Kate and Joy. Kate is responsible for thinking up this wonderful idea, and Joy designed our great banner. On Kate’s blog, you will see her once a month shopping trip, where her goal is to spend about $250 of her $300 a month budget. Joy is a newbie to menu planning. She has set a goal of $450 a month for her family of five. She will be focusing on make-ahead meals and only shopping every other week. Both Kate and Joy will be posting in detail about their food budgets, menu planning, shopping trips, daily meals, and recipes.

Our kitchen doors are wide open, so come on in. We hope you enjoy our grand adventure!

This post may contain a link to an affiliate. See my disclosure policy for more information.

13 Smart Things to do With Your Tax Rebate

13 Smart Things to do With Your Tax Rebate

1. Pay off your credit card(s).
2. Pay off any outstanding personal loans.
3. Send an extra payment or two to the old woman (Sallie Mae).
4. Pay off any medical bills, or have that procedure or test done that you have been putting off because of the high cost.
5. Start an emergency fund.
6. Invest it in an IRA.
7. Donate some or all of the money to a favorite charity.
8. Stock your pantry.
9. Get a tune-up for your vehicle, so it runs better and consumes less fuel.
10. Start a college fund for the kids.
11. Invest in a good bike and bike to work.
12. Take a continuing education course.
13. What are you doing with your Tax Rebate?

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Wordless Wednesday

You can view more Wordless Wednesday here, here, and here.

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Crayons in my Dryer

We are going on week number three of our viral sickness. This weekend I decided to do a massive cleaning, in an attempt to rid my house of whatever junk that was making all the kids sick. As I was pulling some sheets out of the dryer, I noticed that they had a new design on them. A splatter paint sort of design. I then looked in my dryer and saw this.

and this

Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on what type of person you are, this is not the first time we have had melted crayons all over our dryer drum. I sent my husband to the store to get some WD-40 so I could get to work removing the melted crayons from the dryer, before they ruined any more bedding.

How to Remove Melted Crayon from a Dryer Drum

Spray some WD-40 on a rag.

Rub the crayon spots with rag.

Continue until all the spots have been removed.

Put several damp rags in the dryer and run them for 20 minutes to remove the WD-40 from the dryer drum.

There are some important things to remember when using this method.

1. Spray the WD-40 on the rag, not in the drum.

2. Make sure your dryer is cool before starting.

3. Take your head out of the drum every so often so you don’t get lightheaded from the WD-40. (I won’t tell you how I know this one, but trust me, get some air every few minutes).

Join me next week for my tutorial on how to get crayons out of clothes :).

For more Works for me Wednesday head on over to Rocks in My Dryer.

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