Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Fry's is Taking Competitors Coupons Again!!!

Beginning today, Wednesday, January 26th, Fry's is once again accepting competitor's coupons (like Fresh & Easy $5 off $30 or Safeway's "when you spend $10" ones).  They are also back to making all coupons equal $1, including those that say "Do Not Double or Triple"!!!  The only "rule change" to note is that the $5 off $30 (and others similar to that) will be taken off AFTER all coupons and VIP discounts are taken.

For those of us couponers, this is fantastic news!  I can once again limit most of my shopping to one store again, instead of running from store to store to get the best deals!!  I was very sad when they discontinued this at the end of December, but they were making so much $$, I guess they realized their mistake and are bringing it back again.  There is no word on how long they will do this, but I suspect it will be on and off throughout the year.  Take advantage of it when you can and reap the blessings!!

Also note that they are running a pretty good stock up sale that is $5 off when you buy 10 items.  Check it out and stock up on those items you use regularly.  Make sure to keep track of the number of items as you shop so you don't get messed up.  I like to tally mine on my shopping list as I go.  Then if I am an item or 2 short, I can just grab one or two more of an item to make up the difference.  And if you use your coupons along with this sale, you can get some really great prices!!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

True Treasures: A Gabby Moms Review

 I have had the pleasure over the last few weeks of reading  True Treasures:  10 Years of TEACH Magazine.  And trust me when I tell you that I read it from COVER TO COVER!!!

Click HERE to read more!!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Yummy Chicken and Dumplings

I think I have only made chicken and dumplings 2 or 3 times in my life and I have probably followed a different recipe each time (I can't remember.)  However, this time I read a few different recipes and decided to "wing it" myself.  I have cooked for almost 35 years (yes, I started when I was 2:-) and figured I have a good feel for what will taste good.  So here is how I made these delicious Chicken and Dumplings the easy way.

I put about 4 quarts of chicken broth into a big pot and brought it to a boil.  You can use water with the powdered chicken broth, or used homemade or canned/boxed.  Check the seasoning and add whatever you think makes it taste the best (I used Trader Joe's 21 Seasoning Salute).  While waiting for that to come to a boil, I chopped up some onion (about 1/2 of one), carrots (4), celery (2 or 3) and I had some broccoli I wanted to use up, so I chopped it up, too.  When the broth was boiling, I added all these ingredients.  I also chopped up 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts that I had (I got these from Zaycon Foods - 40 lb. for $1.49/lb and they are HUGE!!!) and added them to the broth.  I let that boil/simmer for about 30-40 minutes.

Then I took out a can of Pillsbury Grands Biscuits.  I flattened each biscuit a little and then just cut them up into strips about 1 1/2 inches long and dropped them into the pot a little at a time.  Stir occasionally just to make sure they don't stick together.  After letting that cook for about 15 minutes, I took a little of the broth plus a little milk (total about 1/2 cup) and mixed in about 1 1/2 Tablespoons of flour.  I have one of those Tupperware shakers, so it is really easy to prevent clumps.  Then I poured that into the big pot and watched it thicken a little into a nice gravy for the chicken and dumplings.  And that is it - it was ready to eat!!! 

It got rave reviews from my kiddos and I will DEFINITELY do a repeat on this one!!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Great Deals at American Discount Foods

I briefly stopped at American Discount Foods today in Mesa to see what they had.  I came away with some great deals (and I only went into two of the rooms!)

First, they had some smoked turkey for slicing for lunchmeat for $0.99/lb!!  The whole thing is just under 10 lbs. and will make for alot of turkey sandwiches!

They also had big hunks of mild cheddar on sale for $1.99/lb, so I bought 2 big ones (Alissa has been craving mac n cheese, so that is a great savings!)

They had Shamrock Farms Buttermilk for $1.49 for the half gallon - that is about 1/2 price and I LOVE buttermilk!

They also had Breyer's Ice Cream (many different flavors) for $0.99 (1.75 qt) for the first 1 - so I only bought 2 - Vanilla and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough.

They had alot of bread from a natural bakery (can't remember the name, but local) for $.99 and $.49, so I splurged and bought 2 round artisan loaves that are some kind of herb sour dough and very yummy for $0.49 each.

Well, that's all I bought this trip, but they had TONS of other great deals there, too!  If you get a chance, you should probably stop by and check it out, too.  They are located at 308 S Extension Rd, Mesa, AZ 85210-8497, just north of Broadway. Here is a link to a map showing the location.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Homemade Cinnamon Chipotle Rub

I used to be able to buy McCormick's Cinnamon Chipotle Rub at a "dented can" store in Yuma for really cheap.  And I tried it on grilled pork chops to the rave reviews of my kiddos.  But, since moving to Mesa, I haven't been able to find it, let alone at a cheap price.

So I decided to find a recipe that would duplicate this wonderful rub.  Here is my version of the rub recipe:

Cinnamon Chipotle Rub

2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup chili powder
1/4 cup cinnamon
dash cayenne pepper (to taste)
few grinds of fresh black pepper
2 T crushed chipotle pepper seasoning

Mix and store in a jar.  Rub liberally on ham, pork roast, pork chops, chicken, etc. and grill, roast, bake, etc.  Note: on chicken, place run under the skin for best flavor.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Yummy Pumpkin Pasta

I have been reading recipes and contemplating making this dish for a couple months - since the beginning of the "pumpkin" season.  So tonight, I was hungry for some pasta and had some of the fresh pumpkin puree in my fridge.  I decided to give it a try.  My daughter was not so optimistic.

However, it was really easy to make and tastes delicious!  Here is the recipe I began with, however, I tweaked it a little by adding a little more hot sauce to taste and some extra seasonings that I felt it needed as I tasted it along the way:


  • 1 (16 ounce) package penne pasta
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree (or fresh pumpkin puree)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 dash hot pepper sauce
  • 2 pinches ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch ground nutmeg
  • salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 (8 ounce) package shredded parmesan cheese


  1. Fill a large pot with lightly salted water and bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling, stir in the pasta, and return to a boil. Cook the pasta uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the pasta has cooked through, but is still firm to the bite, about 12 minutes. Drain well in a colander set in the sink.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in the garlic and onion; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the chicken broth, pumpkin puree, and both creams. Season with hot pepper sauce, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until sauce has thickened, about 4 minutes. Toss 1/2 parmesan cheese into pumpkin sauce and heat through. Serve over pasta sprinkled with remaining parmesan cheese.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

It's a New Year - Welcome 2011!

Wow, I can hardly believe 2010 is gone and a new year has begun!

2010 has been an interesting year for us.  We were able to finally buy our home and move in April, Cody played a full season of JV football with no serious injuries, Joe transferred to a different WalMart and moved in Asset Protection, Alissa began taking Hip Hop/Krump dance classes, Cody turned 16 in September....whew!  Alot happened!  And God was so very faithful to provide everything that we needed throughout the entire year!

I enter 2011 knowing that whatever it holds, God has a plan for us.  He has our best in His heart and will carry us through all the things that await us this year.  He will provide all that we have need of when we need it.  He will bless us above all that we can imagine.  He will guide us and give us wisdom through the challenges we will face.  He will hold our children safe in His loving hands, no matter what comes their way this year.

I am resting in peace today because I know who holds my future and I know He holds my hand!!

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Happy New Year to you and your family!  May you be richly blessed by God's amazing faithfulness this year!