Boy did today go fast! That is a wonderful thing when it's Monday.
After work I had to run to the store and get laundry soap. The last time we needed laundry soap I made it. It was from a recipe I found on the Budget Living Board for Taste of Home. (Here is the link: http://community.tasteofhome.com/forums/t/665030.aspx). I had some $2 off coupons for any size container of Gain laundry soap. I scoped out the laundry soap and even with my coupon it would be $3 for a container so small that I'd surely have to go back next week to more. Instead I bought the Borax and Washing Soda to make my own again. I still need to pick up a bar of Fels Naptha but I've only seen it at the local Hy-vee (I was at Walmart) so I'll have to stop there to pick it up. The last time I bought the items to make laundry soap was back in June or July and we are just now needing to buy new stuff. $6 for 2-3 months worth of laundry soap? Now that is a bargain. Anyone have sensitive skin and wondering if it's worth a try? Well, my daughter has lots of allergies and sensitivities and we have not had a single problem with her since we have been using the homemade laundry soap.
Overall I was pretty happy with my shopping trip. I spent $28 on necessity items (shampoo, body soap, dish soap, the laundry soap, some meds for April's congestion, etc) and saved $14 by using coupons. Not too bad. I even picked up a "free" Red Box video on my out for April. (If you sign up at http://www.redbox.com/ they will send you a text message every Monday with a promo code for a free movie.) The only thing about the free movie is that you have to rent the video on Monday and if you want it to be truly free it will need to be returned Tuesday before 9pm. I take advantage of this most Mondays. Some months they have it on Wedsnesdays also.
Today's tip of the Day: Do you like those yummy instant oatmeal packets but hate spending the money? Buy a box of Quaker Instant Oats (the generic or off-brands that I've tried for this were too mushy for my taste, but if you like mushy oatmeal by all means by the cheaper stuff!), some dried fruit, cinnamon, and sugar/sweetner. Some of these items you may already have around the house. Dump your instant oats in a pretty large bowl, mix in some dried fruit, about 1/4 cup of cinnamon and a somewhat generous amount of sugar/sweetner (you can always add more sugar later to suit your taste). You can either store this in a large container that can be sealed tight, or you can pour into snack sized bags to make convenient servings to grab and make later. I am a fan of storing the larger quantity all together. Then you can scoop it into a small microwave safe container, add some water or milk, and heat it right in the same container. There is less waste and less money spent this way also. This recipe can be experimented with. We are partial to cinnamon and apples. But you could replace the apples with raisins, craisins, dried blueberries, dried peaches, etc. You could also add nuts. Another great option would be to omit the fruit from the original mixture and add a little fresh fruit when you add the liquid and heat your oatmeal.