Guest post from Jade of Marvelous Chef: Can the potatoes you made last night make a great breakfast too? You bet your bottom dollar they can! Whether roasted, boiled, or mashed, potatoes are the perfect ingredient to incorporate into a delicious […]

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21 Days to a More Disciplined Life

3 Frugal Breakfast Recipes Using Leftover Potatoes

Guest post from Jade of Marvelous Chef:

Can the potatoes you made last night make a great breakfast too? You bet your bottom dollar they can! Whether roasted, boiled, or mashed, potatoes are the perfect ingredient to incorporate into a delicious morning meal that is healthy and super affordable too.

Potatoes are an excellent source of nutrition and have the complex carbohydrates necessary to keep you full and focused for at least a few hours.

Start your morning off right by enjoying one of these mouth-watering recipes!

These are just a few of the delicious ways to incorporate leftover potatoes into frugal breakfasts the whole family will love.

What are your favorite ways to incorporate leftovers for breakfast?

Jade Evans is the founder of Marvelous Chef, where she shares easy ways to cook, useful tips, and healthy recipes. 

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Ask the Readers: Problems with mPLUS Rewards Program?

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Ask the Readers: Problems with mPLUS Rewards Program?

Today’s question is from Susan:

Through the years, I’ve earned a few thousand dollars from Swagbucks, and continue to use and enjoy the program. I’ve also had great success in the past with mPOINTS (now known as mPLUS Rewards).

However, I now have requested payouts for about $50 worth of gift cards in the past two months, and have not received my claim codes for any of these cards. I’ve reached out to the company’s customer service on multiple occasions, and have received no response.

Have any of you experienced a story similar to mine? This was once a great way to earn some extra money, but now I’m beginning to wonder if the company has gone bankrupt. If I’m not going to be reimbursed for my efforts with this program, I don’t want to waste my time. Thanks so much!

6CompaniesThatWillPayYouForTakingOnlineSurveys-Pinnable

Looking for more opportunities to make money from home? See my list of recommended survey companies here.

Do you have a question you’d like to ask Money Saving Mom® readers? Read the submission guidelines and submit it here.

    
 

What I Wore This Week (Frugal Fashion)

This summer, I’m taking the Get Your Pretty On Summer Style Challenge.

So far, I’m loving this challenge and can’t believe how much it’s encouraging me to get dressed in a cute outfit every day, try some new outfit pairings, and just enjoy putting together looks. Plus, I LOVE the Facebook Group where women share their own variation of each day’s outfit. 

I thought it would be fun to share a round-up of my outfits from this past week in hopes that it might inspire you with ideas and or encourage you to take a little time to mix and match items you already have to create some cute outfits!

(Want to see more outfits? See last week’s What I Wore post.)

Here’s what I wore this week:

It was rainy and dark this day, so the lighting is bad on this photo. I love this outfit, except I don’t love the jewelry. I thought I did — until I saw the picture! It’s too much and it doesn’t look like it matches.

Shirt: Amazon — no longer available in blue 🙁
Jeans: Zulily Sale
Shoes: Amazon
Jewelry: Amazon and Kohl’s Clearance Rack

This outfit was so perfect for cleaning, hanging out with my family, running errands, grocery shopping, and a half day of blog/business work!

Shirt: Cents of Style
Shorts: Stitch Fix
Shoes: Amazon
Jewelry: Kohl’s Clearance Rack

I think these shoes are super cute, but I’ve decided they are not super cute ON me. That the style not only doesn’t work for shorts, I just think it doesn’t work for me, period. Which is sad, because I usually have really great success with shoes on Amazon. Oh well. 🙁

I wore a dress again today (something I rarely do!) I love that this style challenge is really pushing me outside of my comfort zone!

Dress: Stitch Fix
Earrings: Amazon
Shoes: Amazon

I’m not sure that I love this dress with these shoes, but I was trying to make it look a little more casual since I was wearing it all day.

This was by far my favorite outfit of the week. I just love it on all counts!

Shirt: Amazon
Jeans: Stitch Fix
Jewelry: Kohl’s Clearance Rack
Shoes: Zulily Sale

This was a different style for me… it was the day I tried to go for a Victorian sort of mash-up look! 😉

I didn’t think I liked this shirt at all, but so many of you convinced me that it really looks good, so I think maybe it could grow on me. I don’t like how easily it gets wrinkled nor how high the neckline is (it almost felt like it was choking me!)

However, after seeing the photo, I know I don’t love the shirt with these shorts. I think it’d look cuter with white jeans or other light colored jeans.

Top: Amazon — it’s just $7 shipped on Amazon
Shorts: Stitch Fix
Jewelry: Amazon
Shoes: Zulily Sale

Do you know what I’ve definitely learned from this challenge? That taking photos of my outfits every day and posting them feels very vulnerable but it’s also incredibly helpful because I’m learning more what styles I like, what works and what doesn’t work, and what an outfit really looks like. This has been fun and stretching for me, but it’s also causing me to step back and redefine some of my long-held style preferences and tastes.

For more frugal fashion tips, read my post on Why I Buy Almost All of My Jewelry at Kohl’s, my post on My 3 Favorite Summer Shirts on Amazon, and My Top 3 Sites to Get Great Deals on Clothes.

P.S. Find out more about the Get Your Pretty On Summer Style challenge here (use coupon code MSM10 to get $10 off!)

    
 

Brigette’s $54 Grocery Shopping Trip and Weekly Menu Plan for 6

Aldi

Parmesan Cheese – $2.29

Whole Milk – $2.07

1 16-oz carton Heavy Whipping Cream – $1.69

1 64-oz carton Orange Juice – $1.79

4 dozen Eggs – $2.20 (Loving the egg prices! Anyone else?)

1 bag Red Grapes (3.07lb @ $0.98/lb) – $3.01

1 pint Grape Tomatoes – $1.89

1 Cantaloupe – $0.99

1 pkg Romaine Hearts – $1.99

1 Cauliflower – $2.29

1 pkg Broccoli Crowns – $1.39

1 3-lb bag Pink Lady Apples – $3.49

1 10-lb bag Russet Potatoes – $3.49

1 box Raisin Bran – $1.79

1 pkg English Muffins – $0.99

1 loaf White Bread – $0.85

1 loaf Split Top Wheat Bread – $0.99

2 24-oz jars Pasta Sauce – $1.98

1 bag Nacho Tortilla Chips – $1.09

Total: $36.27

Harris Teeter

2 boxes Corn Pops – $3.98, used $1.00/2 Kelloggs Corn Pops, Krave or Apple Jacks Cereal – 6-18-17 RP; Includes 8 oz or Larger Only (exp. 07/03/17) – $2.98/2 boxes after coupon

2 boxes Wheat Thins – $4.38, used $0.75/2 Nabisco Cookie or Cracker Products – 5-21-17 SS; Includes 3.5 oz or Larger Only (exp. 07/01/17) (doubled), plus receive $1.20 rebate from Checkout 51 – $1.68/2 boxes after coupon and rebate

1 pkg Hot Dog Buns – $0.77

1 pkg Ball Park Angus Beef Hot Dogs – $2.99

1 20-oz French’s Ketchup – $2.39, FREE wyb Ball Park Angus Beef Hot Dogs, plus receive $1.50 back from Checkout 51 – $1.50 MM after rebate

1 20-oz French’s Mustard – $2.79, FREE wyb Ball Park Angus Beef Hot Dogs, plus receive $0.50 back from Ibotta – $0.50 MM after rebate ($0.99 for Hot Dogs, Ketchup and Mustard)

2 jars Vlassic Pickles – $2.75, used $1.00/2 Vlasic Pickles, Peppers, or Relish – 5-14-17 SS (exp. 07/15/17) – $1.75/2 after coupon

1 pkg 80/20 Ground Beef (1.57lb @ $1.99/lb) – $3.12

1 pkg Perdue Chicken Nuggets – $3.99, used $0.75/1 Perdue Frozen Fully Cooked Product – 6-11-17 RP (exp. 07/22/17) (doubled) – $2.49 after coupon

1 64-oz carton Juicy Juice – $2.00, used $0.55/1 Juicy Juice Product – 5-21-17 SS; Excludes 4 pk juice boxes (exp. 07/03/17) (doubled) – $0.90 after coupon

2 Colgate Toothpaste – $2.00, used 2 $0.50/1 Colgate Toothpaste – 6-11-17 SS; Includes 3 oz or Larger Only (exp. 06/24/17) (doubled) – FREE after coupons

1 pkg Smithfield Breakfast Sausage – $3.00, used $2.00/1 Smithfield Frozen Breakfast Item or Fresh Breakfast Sausage Product – 5-14-17 RP; DND (exp. 06/30/17) – $1.00 after coupon

1 12-ct box Community Coffee K-Cups (accidentally not pictured) – $4.99, used $1.50/1 printable, plus receive $2.00 back from Checkout 51  – $1.49 after coupon and rebate

1 bag Cooked Perfect Meatballs – $2.50, $1.00/1 printable, plus receive $1.00 back from Checkout 51 – $0.50 after coupon and rebate

Total after Coupons, Rebates, and Tax: $17.78

Weekly Grocery Total: $54.05

Weekly Menu Plan

Breakfasts

Scrambled Eggs and Toast x 2

Oatmeal with Apples x 2

Cereal x 3

Lunches

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches (My husband is out of town a few days this week – so I am focusing on easy meals!), Cheese Sticks, Cucumbers/Carrots (leftover from last week) x 2

Grilled Cheese Sandwiches, Fruit, Carrots x 2

Leftovers x 3

Dinners

Hot Dogs on the Grill, Green Beans (canned), Watermelon (leftover from last week)

Egg McMuffins (Fried Eggs and Cheese on English Muffins), Fruit Salad, Parmesan Roasted Broccoli

Grilled Chicken, Tossed Salad, Homemade Biscuits, Mashed Potatoes (Peeling potatoes is my 6-yr old’s new favorite job! It also keeps him busy for a LONG time, so I am thinking lots of mashed potatoes on the menu in the near future. :))

Taco Salad, Spanish Rice, Grapes

Hamburgers on the Grill with Homemade Buns, Baked Potato Wedges, Roasted Cauliflower

Old Fashioned Pancakes, Sausage, Homemade Applesauce

Leftovers

    
 

My 25 Favorite Things to Buy at ALDI

You all know how much I love ALDI. I mean, how could I not love the store that has saved us thousands of dollars over the years??

I often get questions from people asking what are the best things to buy at ALDI, so I thought it was high time I put together a post on my 25 favorite things to buy at ALDI. (Note: These are in no particular order!)

1. Salsa

While we love Pace Picante Sauce, we have bought countless jars of ALDI salsa throughout the years and find it to be good — especially for the regular price!

2. Tortilla Chips

We can’t tell one bit of difference between ALDI tortilla chips and any other store brand or even brand name of tortilla chips. Plus, we love the $1.19 regular price tag!

3. Chocolate Chips

We’ve purchased chocolate chips at ALDI for years and they are great! I can’t tell a difference between them and Nestle chocolate chips… well, except for the regular $1.79 price tag!

4. Coconut Oil

The fact that ALDI began carrying organic products a few years ago made me love them so much more! Their prices on coconut oil are so much better than what you’d pay many other places. (Note: TJ Maxx is also a great place to look for deals on organic coconut oil!)

5. Olive Oil

ALDI offers great prices on both organic olive oil and regular olive oil. (Note: TJ Maxx is also a great place to look for deals on olive oil!)

6. Sugar

We typically only buy cane sugar or raw sugar, but the regular ALDI prices on all sugar products usually beat out regular grocery store prices by quite a bit. We’ve bought their regular sugar, brown sugar, powdered sugar, and cane sugar for years and haven’t ever had issues with any of them.

(Note: Someone told me recently that they found the 4-lb. bag of pure cane sugar at Dollar Tree for just a dollar!!! I’m so checking on that the next time I’m at Dollar Tree!)

7. Peanut Butter

You’d be hard-pressed to find a better deal on peanut butter than what you’ll regularly find at ALDI. We have tried all of their peanut butter, but we typically buy their natural peanut butter and it’s really yummy!

8. Cereal

My kids absolutely love cereal, but I do not love the prices you usually find at the grocery store. Which is why, if we buy cereal, we almost always buy it at ALDI. You want to make sure to get the Millville brand, not the name brand cereals, though, as the name brand cereals at ALDI are NOT less expensive.

But many of the Millville cereals are priced at $1.19 to $1.39 per box. The only kind we don’t like are the knock-off Cheerios. We have yet to find any knock-off Cheerios that actually taste great. However, we do buy their knock-off Honey Nut Cheerios and my kids like those.

9. Tortillas

Remember my post on why I don’t make my own tortillas? This is why… because I can buy a bag of them for just $0.99!!!

10. Canned Tomatoes

We have purchased pretty much all of the ALDI tomato products many times over the years and had no issues with any of them. Plus, you can’t really beat the $0.49 price tag!

11. Canned Green Beans

The ALDI french style green beans take me back to our law school days. We ate SO many cans of these! I think they were only $0.29 per can or something at the time and one can would feed the two of us.

For the record, I think that the ALDI brand of french-style green beans is better than any other brand I’ve tried!

12. Milk

We’ve purchased milk at ALDI for years and have had great success with it. I’m not sure that milk ever tastes differently if purchased from different places, but I’d recommend their milk.

13. Bananas

Their bananas are regularly priced at $0.44 per pound — which is a pretty good price! Sometime, the selection isn’t that great, but I usually try to buy them when they are not very ripe and then let them ripen at home on the countertop. (Also, take them out of the bag as soon as you get home as that seems to help them ripen better.)

14. Berries

I basically can’t stomach paying regular grocery store prices for berries after the deals I’ve gotten at ALDI for berries. A few times per year, they’ll have them on sale for just $0.99 per container! When that happens, I stock up and try to buy some extra to freeze.

(Note: Some stores have notoriously bad fruit. We’ve not had this experience at any of our ALDI stores in the different cities we’ve lived in. However, on occasion, they’ve been completely out of some produce item that was on sale or it’s been very slim pickings what is left. I suggest asking them when the produce gets restocked and trying to shop on that day. Also, really look through the produce. If you dig, you can usually find some great tubs of berries — but they might not be the ones that are right on top!)

15. Grapes

My kids love grapes and ALDI routinely has these on sale for $2 per 2-lb. bag. I find that these are one of their produce items that are usually the least picked over and often the longest lasting. It might just be that grapes hold up better, but regardless, I always buy grapes when they are on sale!

16. Melons

In the summer, ALDI often has great prices on melons — especially cantaloupe and watermelon. I love it when the cantaloupe prices go on sale for $0.99! Yes, you do have to look carefully through the bins to find great watermelon and cantaloupe, but I can usually always find them if I search!

17. Butter

I love butter. Maybe I’m weird, but I do. It pretty much makes everything better! 😉

So I also love that ALDI doesn’t charge you an arm and a leg for their butter. That way, I can slather it on my muffins and toast freely.

18. Bread

While the ALDI bread isn’t the best bread on the market, it works great for sandwiches. We usually buy the 100% whole wheat bread and all of our family is good with it.

(Note: I also check our store’s day old bread area and often find whole wheat bread there for about the same price as ALDI. When I do, I buy it and stick it in the freezer!)

19. Feta Cheese

I love feta cheese on my salads and it’s a special treat that I sometimes splurge on, thanks to the fantastic prices on it at ALDI!

20. Hummus

Hummus is another item I enjoy that I will sometimes splurge on. I like the Pine Nut variety the best. 

21. Cheese

While the ALDI cheese prices have gone up in recent years (they used to be $1.39 per block back in the day!), their regular prices are still usually some of the best prices around. We sometimes splurge and buy the string cheese, too, because my kids love it!

22. Frozen Chicken Breasts

I don’t buy a lot of meat at ALDI, but one staple item we buy almost every time we go there is their frozen chicken breasts. I can’t tell any difference between them and the Kroger brand and they are usually at least $1 cheaper per bag.

23. Frozen Fruit

We love frozen fruit in our smoothies! If I can’t find some great deals on marked down fruit somewhere, buying the bagged frozen fruit at ALDI will work — especially since the prices are pretty decent.

24. Frozen Veggies

We usually buy all of our frozen vegetables at ALDI, unless there’s some really fantastic deal at Kroger.

25. Macaroni & Cheese

Their mac & cheese is not at all healthy and it’s one of the few pretty processed things we buy at ALDI, but for $0.33 a box, it makes for an occasional treat for my kids. And they love that they can make it themselves. I love that it doesn’t have any food coloring in it (something we try to avoid at our house).

In Jesse’s law school days, he and I ate many, many boxes of this stuff! So I’m very grateful for it — because it was a fallback meal anytime the grocery budget was especially lean!

ALDI Shoppers: Do you agree with my list? Anything you would add or take off? I’d love to hear!

P.S. New to shopping at ALDI? Read this post before you head to the store.

    
 

21 Days to a More Disciplined Life


   

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