The Coupon Project: Top Posts of 2013

Before I plunge forward into 2014, I wanted to take the time and share my favorite posts of 2013 – as well as your favorites! Have you seen all of these?

5 Popular Posts in 2013

In 2013, we had over 1 million visits to the blog which is boggling to me! That’s about one out of every 300 Americans! Here are some of the posts that drew people in this year…

mealplanbannerHow to Plan & Prep your Meals for the Week. This guest post by my pal Kelly ended up garnering over 19,000 pins and was my most trafficked post of 2013! Turns out her simple method resonated with a lot of folks.

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Saving Money at Disneyland. This post was actually published in 2011, shortly after our Disneyland trip. It’s clear I have a lot of Disney fans out there – this was one of my top 10 most visited posts in 2013! Incidentally, check out my Disney category if you’re planning (or dreaming!) about a trip to either Disneyland or Disney World. I have posts covering how we saved on airfare, in the parks, hotels, and more.

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How to Re-Grout and Re-Caulk a Shower. I am NOT a handy person by any stretch of the imagination, but in 2013, I re-grouted my shower all by myself! While this was a bit of a messy and time consuming project, I know I saved a ton of money handling this repair by myself. Judging by the traffic on this post, I apparently encouraged a lot of you to do the same!

Pumpkin Cookies with Trader Joe's Cookie Butter Recipe

Trader Joe’s Recipes: Easy Pumpkin Cookies with Cookie Butter Filling. This was my most visited recipe in 2013 and I have to say – it’s a good one! For this recipe, I took a box of Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Bread and turned it into cookie batter. Then I baked and topped with cookie butter. The result was delicious!

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Pear Vanilla Bread. This was my next most trafficked recipe for 2013! I was inspired to create this pear vanilla bread recipe after my all-time favorite jam recipe (pear vanilla). It’s very sweet, delicious and has gotten excellent reviews from the readers that have made it for themselves!

5 of My Favorite Posts of 2013

These may not have been the most trafficked posts, but these posts were among the most enjoyable for me to put together and represent my style as a writer! (Warning: these posts may not have a whole lot to do with coupons.)

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The Situation. This was the account of how a stray pigeon ended up in my garden, how I was able to locate the owner, and trap the bird.

DSCN0988 (800x600)The Pets we Rescued Might have West Nile. This is the story of how the kids & I went to great lengths to rescue a swarm of baby tadpoles out of the garden only to realize we’d just saved a ton of baby mosquito larvae. Thank goodness I realized my error BEFORE we brought them into the house to turn into “frogs!”

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Charlotte’s Blueberry Park (Tacoma). Without a doubt, one of the best “deals” I scouted out this year was a local park that offers acres of blueberries – free for the picking! These berries are grown chemically-free and made the most delicious blueberry ice cream!

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My Marathon Canning Weekend. In early fall, I canned up 41 jars of food including applesauce and pear vanilla jam (which we enjoyed at Thanksgiving!), along with salsa, peach barbecue sauce, and more.

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Making Holiday Wishes 2013. This was the 3rd year in a row Fred Meyer has graciously sponsored a “Making Holiday Wishes Come True” contest where two families win $250 Fred Meyer gift cards. One of this year’s winners was Jessica, a single mom to Robby, a small boy who has special needs. She was able to provide him with a tablet for Christmas thanks to winning the gift card. She is hopeful that the tablet will help Robby’s ability to express himself. I was delighted she was one of the winners!

Top Deals in 2013

It’s hard to narrow down to just a few deals, but these were some of my very favorites (and ones I’ll likely watch for again in 2014)!

Kohl’s: $8 Drumsets (normally $99!): November

Kohl’s: $8 Pet Beds (normally $69!): November

Kohl’s: FREE Small Appliances after Rebate: Black Friday

Kohl’s: Kitchenaid Mixer for $135: November

Amazon: Vtech Toys for 50% off: November

Amazon: Soda Stream for $62 + $25 Credit: November 

Charlotte’s Blueberry Park (free source of blueberries): summer

Fred Meyer Friends & Family Sale: August, December

Fred Meyer: FREE Artisan Bread Coupon: December

Fred Meyer: Roast Chicken for $0.91 Coupon: September 

Grocery Outlet Wine Sale: November, December

6pm: 20% off Entire Purchase: Cyber Monday

Fred Meyer Tide Deal Generating $9 in Catalinas: July

Whole Foods: Organic Grapes for $0.99: June

How to Score (Nearly-Free) Airfare: year-round

Modnique: Take $20 off any order: September (I got a PUMA jacket for my son for less than $5 shipped thanks to this deal!)

What were some of your favorite posts and deals for 2013?


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My Favorite Posts of 2012

This year, I published hundreds of posts here at The Coupon Project.

But this collection of 36 posts were my very favorites. (I put them into categories for handy reference.) I’ve highlighted my top five very very favorite posts if you’re curious to know that too.

Strange Confessions Posts

Confession Time: I’m “that” Library Patron. A post wherein I divulge my dirty little secrets about my library habits.

I don’t Own a Smartphone. Another shocking confession.

I Suck at Elf on the Shelf: A Month of Terrible Ideas. Stuff you won’t find on Pinterest.

Posts Containing Deep Thoughts

Deep Thoughts on My Birthday. I got philosophical as I turned 33 this year.

30 Lessons I’ve Learned about Blogging. Thoughts after hitting my 3 year blogging anniversary. (Also known as a blogiversary, apparently.)

My Grandma’s Guest Books. My mom found my late grandma’s guest books, which went clear back to 1942.

My Thoughts on Food Snobbery. Basically, don’t do it.

Cool and Random Stuff I Did Posts

My Whirlwind Adventure at Seattle’s Vegfest. The time I thought it would be “fun” to take the kids by myself to an overcrowded exhibition hall in the Seattle Center for a popular festival. Note to self: not again.

The Unfortunate Episode in the Produce Department with Me, My Kids, and the Car Cart. Nuff said.

Puyallup Fair Family Trip: Frugal Makeover Edition. This year had more win than last year.

Our Family Photo Shoot with Devon Michelle Photography. Man she’s good.

My King5 News Clip. I was on the news with my friends. It was really cool.

Fun at Hmart. I love that store and I think more people should check it out.

Making Holiday Wishes Contest: Winners Announced. The best part of my job all year: this contest.

Frugal Living Adventures Posts

Starting a Garden: How to Decide what to Grow. Written just prior to planting my 2012 garden.

How to Make your Own Vegetable Stock. Some stuff that you think would be hard, isn’t.

Learning about Pioneers (Homesteading Series). I took the kids to the Pioneer Farm. Here is that post.

Canning Applesauce. I put on my big girl pants and used a boiling-water canner for the first time. I lived.

Weed Foraging (Homesteading Series). I was eating weeds here in Washington, and that was before the election. I’m cool like that.

More Fun in the Garden: Tiny Spawn of Satan Discovered, Slug Babies, Rabbits. Everyone and the Monkey’s Uncle has made a home in my garden this year.

Homemade Bath Gifts in a Jar (Love: In a Jar). How to make cute bath stuffs in jars.

Lazy Summer Days in the Garden. When all the hassle is actually worth it.

Wild Blackberry Picking & Preserving. Blackberries are good. They are healthy. They can also sometimes be free.

Fall into a Routine: Cleaning & Organizing Kids’ Spaces. Stuff I did to get the kids’ areas in gear for back to school.

Five Misconceptions I had about Canning. And how I got over myself, pretty much.

Reflecting on the Harvest: How to Decide What to Grow in your Garden. At the end of my 2012 garden.

Frugal Living Among Friends. How community can work together to support frugal living.

Garlic Planting and the Awesomeness of Tagro. Two things I love in my garden.

See Angela Sew: A Scrunchy. This is big for me.

How I canned my Garden Tomatoes. Easy peasy.

Angela, You’re Scaring Me Already

(Trailer) The Coupon Games: May the Coupons Be Ever in your Favor. Oh look, it’s Katniss and Peeta…and coupons.

Announcing my April Series: Survivorgirl! Fooled ya.

The Coupon Clipperette: Season Finale. I spent far too many hours watching The Bachelorette to “research” this post.

First World Couponing Problems. Let’s all cry about it, already.

Eleven Unexpected (and somewhat Troubling) Gifts on Amazon. Stuff I bet you didn’t know they sold.

More Stuff on Amazon. More weird stuff I found on Amazon.

Wow. No wonder I’m tired.


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How to make fair-style Elephant Ears

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On my Puyallup Fair post, reader Alicia left this comment:

I love elephant ears!!! They don’t make them where I live. Does anyone have a recipe? The last time I had them I was 11 at a fair while visiting my grandparents in Oregon, never have seen them since.

Well Alicia, there was a great looking recipe at All Recipes so I decided to make it and blog about it. And yes, they are yummy.

First, you melt shortening in milk with salt and sugar over the stove with a little salt and sugar. Now I didn’t have shortening but opted to use Nutiva Coconut Oil instead. I can assure you that the recipe turned out just fine!

From here you will add yeast and flour and form a dough. You let it rise for 30 minutes. I’m not the best when it comes to yeast, so I may have screwed this part up. (But I know you’ll do a better job!)

Here’s my completed dough ball.

Make 1-2″ dough balls and flatten them out into thin sheets.

Heat a deep saucepan or deep fryer so there is 1″ of oil. I used vegetable oil. You want to make sure it’s really hot – that’s what will turn these puppies into golden wonders. Then you cook for about 1-2 minutes on each side.


I used metal tongs to flip the elephant ears and also to move them onto paper towels to dry. (With compliments to my three year old  daughter for snapping this photo.)

I dabbed off excess oil and then dusted the ears with a cinnamon and sugar mixture while they were still warm.

These things were delicious!

As a slight variation, I enjoyed one topped with frozen berries. I just microwave them for about a minute or so and they get all steamy and saucy… I’m sure you can think of some other topping ideas, too.

Alicia, I hope this recipe takes you back in time a little bit…to when you were an 11 year old girl visiting the fair with your grandparents.

Cheers!

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The Frugal Misadventures of the Russell Family: The Puyallup Fair Edition

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It all started when we decided to go to the Puyallup Fair.

I had a Groupon for 2 adult admission tickets, plus our kids were free (they are 5 and under). Given that, I thought spending $10 on parking was well justified! Little did I know…

Pitfall #1: The Rides

We just so happened to head to the fair on bracelet day. Buy a bracelet for $25 and guess what? You can go on all the rides you want. This is perfect for my son who loves rides. But my daughter? Well, she’s always been scared of lots of rides. So we opted to buy one bracelet for my son and then $20 worth of tickets for my daughter and also so we could go on a few.

Guess what…

My daughter decided on that day of all days, she loves rides.

So back we went, for another $25 bracelet.

Total hit: $70 for rides. EGADS.

What’s worse? At some point my kids convinced me that riding the Tilt-a-Whirl with them would be a Good Idea. I think I’d like to lovingly rename this ride the Tilt-a-Hurl. It whipped me around and around for what felt like a small eternity. Each time we spun by the ride attendant, I quietly begged him to “please stop the ride.” He did…after I’d counted to well over 200….

Pitfall #2: Fair Food

I decided to pack some snacks. After all, you can easily bring your own food and drink into the fairgrounds. But…can you resist…?

Mr. Scone says: YOU MUST EAT ME. And so I did.

And then once we had our fill of scones, my husband found his favorite fair treat….

And my daughter found hers…

And then, of course, it was time for lunch. Guess how much the meal below cost us…

A. $20
B. $12
C. $43

If you guessed C – $43, you’re right!!! Ding, ding, ding! And no, that burger did not have sautéed black truffles on it. Hubby told me the gal at the counter had him verify the charge because many people end up coming back later, thinking they’d been overcharged. I wonder why?

Pitfall #3: The Expo Hall

Every year we go through the same blasted expo hall….and then I always end up asking “why do we feel the need to go through this same blasted expo hall each year?”

Also, you may be apt to see some rather confusing ads. Um…say WHAT?!

I’ve decided that walking through the aisles of the Fair expo hall is pretty much like running the gauntlet. I do have a few tips to come out unharmed (AKA without buying a sewing machine, life insurance, and leaf gutters):

  1. Do NOT make eye contact with any of the salesman.
  2. Keep walking. The moment you stop, you’re a sitting duck.
  3. If someone calls out to you while you walk past, pretend that you didn’t hear. (Again, refer to #1.)

Except for a minor snafu where my husband ended up sitting in a sauna display and didn’t get out before the salesman found him in there, we came out unscathed.

Show me the Bargains!

I bet at this point you’re saying, “surely, Angela – someone like you must have found some deals at the Fair!”

Oh, but I did.

First, this delightful drum toy in Sillyville. They so awesomely provide drumsticks so your kids can go to town on it. (Aspirin not included.)

The Expo Hall also did have a freebie I found of interest…

Now my kids will be able to identify local noxious weeds! Score!

In all sincerity I did find something I thought was pretty cool. With the kids’ bracelets was a free game ticket. My daughter chose this fishing game (in Sillyville, next to the Silly Slide) where you play until you win. Every player is a winner! Yahoo! Both my kids won ducks, like these.

When I was little I never won those ridiculous fair games. So if you are planning on playing any? I highly recommend the kiddie fishing game.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, I was exhausted. Case in point: we’re heading through the 4-H Dog Hall and I seriously ask my Hubby if this is a real dog…

I also kind of felt like how this gator did. (While I can’t be certain, I’m pretty sure he’s praying to stop the ride. He wants off.)

So you might ask…”Angela, if this costs you a ton of money each year, you eat too much, you get annoyed with shady salespeople and you end up exhausted, why on Earth do you do it?”

One word. Memories.

You can do it a trot, you can do it at a gallop, you can do it real slow so your heart won’t palpitate…just don’t be late.

Do the Puyallup.


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How to clean your fridge in 9 easy steps (AKA what Martha Stewart never told you)

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In the April edition of Martha Stewart Living magazine, Martha demonstrated the proper way to clean a dirty stove. The only problem? The stove she was scouring was already really clean to begin with. So today I wanted to show you how to clean a REALLY dirty appliance. My refrigerator. Martha Stewart, take note.

Step One. Gather the necessary supplies.

Step Two. Brace yourself. Make sure all small children are far away from the door when you open it, lest falling objects strike them and render them unconscious.

Step Three. Take a deep breath and repeat, “it’s just a kitchen appliance, it’s just a kitchen appliance” until you feel your heart rate return to normal. If that doesn’t do the trick, you might need to get a half price Frappuccino.

Step Four. Remove the first shelf and its contents.

Step Five. Clean the shelf, and inspect the food items for expiration dates.

Houston! We have a problem!

Houston?!

Step Six. Take time out to pat yourself on the back for the progress you’ve begun to make. Your mother would be proud!

Step Seven. Next it’s time to throw out any UFO (unidentified furry object).

Step Eight. Clean up the chocolate pudding that you just knocked over. Whoopsies.

Step Nine. Stand back and admire your work! You really have that domestic touch, don’t you?

There you have it. One spotless fridge in 9 easy steps. I don’t think Martha could’ve done it any better, do you?

PS. Ms. Stewart, if you are reading this and like what you see, you can email me at thecouponproject at hotmail dot com. Sure, I’d be happy to share my knowledge with your Martha Stewart Living readers and inspire them to achieve domestic greatness.


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Coupon Project Runway

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Heidi Klum: Welcome to Coupon Project Runway! As you know in fashion, one day you’re in, and the next day you’re out. This week’s challenge was to create a fashionable look using only coupons, and tape. Let’s welcome your judges. Top American fashion designer, Michael Kors; fashion director at Marie Claire magazine, Nina Garcia, and special guest judge and new Disney celebrity, Tiana. Welcome.

Judges: (nodding smugly and waving)

Heidi:Michael Kors, you don’t look like yourself tonight….I hardly recognize you.

Michael Kors: Well, Heidi, to be perfectly frank, I don’t really feel like myself. But, let’s just go with it, OK?

Heidi:OK, it’s just…startling. You remind me of Justin Beiber.

Michael Kors: Let’s just get started, shall we?

Heidi: Very well. Let’s start the show!

(Look one, on model Kate: a vintage-inspired gown designed by Shelly. Shelly struggled with the meticulous construction of the skirt during the final hours of this challenge. She was also nearly sabotaged by Rainbow, who “accidentally” borrowed some of her coupons. Drama ensued, but Shelly brought it together.)

(Look two, on model Bianca: designer Mark took a risk by designing this two-piece bathing suit for the challenge. The top was made using an expired DeMet’s Turtle coupon. For the bottom, he used a combination of Rembrandt and Huggies coupons. Tim Gunn warned him this look might be considered “vulgar” by the judges, but Mark went with his gut instead.)

(Look three, on model Simone: designer Rainbow opted to create functional separates for this look. The asymmetrical “Save $1″ sleeve adds a touch of unexpected whimsy, characteristic of the style we’ve seen Rainbow pull off all season long. Rainbow thinks Shelly needs to grow up.)

Heidi: Designers, it’s time for us to critique your designs. Shelly, let’s start with you. Can you explain your design?

Shelly: I wanted old Hollywood glam for this look, but still very modern. The skirt took a long time. I used a different coupon for each pleat.

Heidi: Well, I loved this look. Loved it. I would wear it on the red carpet. I want that dress.

Nina: I thought it was cute, sweet. The proportion is also nice. Well done.

Heidi: Next, let’s bring out Mark.

Mark: I wanted to do something unexpected, so I thought a swimsuit would be good.

Michael Kors: Bad move, Mark. A swimsuit…made of coupons? Really, how is that supposed to hold up?

Mark: I didn’t think of that.

Nina: It doesn’t look expensive. It looks…cheap.

Mark: I thought that was the idea…coupons and all.

Nina: Now you’re being sarcastic.

Mark: No, I’m not.

Nina: (speechless)

Heidi: (trying to break the awkward silence) Let’s move onto Rainbow. Can you explain your design?

Rainbow: Sure, Heidi. I wanted to do something youthful and fun. I see the girl who wears this look as someone who is free-spirited, and very much the life of the party.

Tiana: Can I say O – M – G, love this look.

Michael Kors: Tiana, I totally agree. This is what women today want to wear. I could see this selling at Macy’s right now.

Heidi: Judges, it’s time to deliberate.

Judges: (deliberating)

Heidi: Designers, you all have worked so hard. But unfortunately, there can only be one winner of Coupon Project Runway. Mark, we recognize you think outside the box, and we think you have great promise. But unfortunately your look tonight did not measure up. Mark….you’re out.

 Heidi:Auf Wiedersehen, Mark.

Mark: Thanks for the opportunity. This won’t be the last time you’ll see me!

Heidi: Shelly, Rainbow, one of you is winner of Coupon Project Runway. Rainbow, we loved your modern, fresh look. You utilized your coupons wisely. Shelly, we were really “wowed” by your ability to take plain old coupons and transform them into a look worthy of the red carpet. This was a really close competition, but in the end, we believe one of you shows greater ability. The winner of Coupon Project Runway is…

Heidi: Rainbow!! Congratulations, you just won 100,000 coupons and the title of Coupon Project Runway winner! And Simone, because you modeled the winning look, you get a two page spread in an upcoming SmartSource insert wearing tonight’s winning look! Congrats to the both of you!

A final word…

Tim Gunn: On behalf of all the cast and crew of Coupon Project Runway, I want to thank you for wasting your time reading this completely superfluous post. In no way does this represent the content normally found on The Coupon Project. Just sometimes. And, I feel the need to disclose that no one was compensated or otherwise coerced to put this together. You just entered the most bizarre portion of Angela Russell’s brain, and I’m glad for both of our sakes, we’ve made it through mostly unscathed. No valid coupons were harmed in the making of today’s post. If for some unknown reason you actually found this to be enjoyable or humorous, go ahead and click that little “like” Facebook button below or leave a comment. With a little bit of luck, you might just see Biggest Coupon Loser, Coupon Bachelor, or Coupon Top Chef debut here one day soon. Make it work!


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Adventures in Produce: Rambutan

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Instead of packing a banana today for little Billy’s lunch, imagine packing one of these bad boys instead:

While the Rambutan may look rather strange to us Westerners, it’s actually a very common fruit in many parts of Asia, including the Philippines.

And of course when I spied it at the Asian market last weekend, it called out to me. “Take me home…eat me….blog about me…”

So today’s pick for Adventures in Produce is the rambutan.

I was extremely curious how to eat this, so I consulted my favorite source of knowledge. Google.

Turns out you cut the outside shell most of the way around, and then pop it off.

What you’ll find inside is a juicy, egg-shaped fruit with a big nut in the middle. You just pop it out of the shell to eat it. From there, remove the seed. I found you could either do this but cutting the fruit away with a sharp knife, or just eating around the seed.

This fruit reminded me very much of a sweet, delicious grape. It was very good! If you’ve ever had a lychee, it tasted very similar.

My only issue? It was a lot of work for just a little bit of fruit! I would’ve loved to have chomped into a bigger piece without getting a seed in the way. The next time I make my way to an Asian market, I’d be curious to see if they don’t sell these pitted and canned.

While I just ate mine whole as a fruit, there is no shortage of yummy sounding recipes on the web. Some that I might be interested to try:

Rambutan, Pineapple and Tofu Curry

Savory Stuffed Rambutan

and wash it all down with a Rambutan Martini

Have you ever tried Rambutan? What did you think?


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Starbucks Cinnamon Scone Hack

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Do you ever have mornings where you wake up and a bowl of cold cereal just won’t do?

Today was such a morning for me. I felt like making something extra special. My kids and I love the scones at Starbucks (guilty pleasure, I know), so I decided to make our own using items from our pantry. If you’ve never made scones before, they are incredibly easy to make and require only a few ingredients. I decided on cinnamon scones and was able to find this recipe in a cooking forum this morning.

Ingredients

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup butter
1 egg, separated
3 tablespoons honey
1/3 cup buttermilk*
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

* I didn’t have this on hand, but easily made do with 1/3 cup milk and a squeeze of lemon juice for acid.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Then have a trusty helper mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Cut in the butter and mix until crumbly. In another bowl, mix the egg yolk (save the white for later) with honey and buttermilk until blended. Then, add to the dry mixture. Stir until just combined.

Using floured hands, form the dough into a ball on a floured surface.

Roll or pat it out until it’s roughly a half an inch thick and 8 inches in diameter. Cut pizza style into equally sized pieces.

Put onto a greased baking pan. Then, wisk the egg white until frothy and coat the tops of the scones. Mix the sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle on top.

Bake for about 10-12 minutes. I took mine out just prior to 10 minutes and they were perfectly flaky.

According to the recipe, these are done. But I felt something was lacking. Glaze!

To make the glaze, I simply mixed a bunch of powdered sugar with a touch of milk until nice and thick. Then, drizzle. I topped with a dash of more cinnamon. Perfection!

Now I may be a little biased, but I truly felt these homemade versions were better than their Starbucks counterparts. They were perfectly flaky and buttery, and the double toppings made them extra cinnamon-y.

And in my son’s words, “tasty!”

I enjoyed mine with my version of a Starbucks eggnog latte. If you were serving them for brunch, might I suggest this delicious egg sausage casserole?

Bon Appetit!

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What are Albertsons double coupons and how do they work?

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Several of you have recently asked “What are these Albertsons double coupons I’m hearing about?”

And I realized I’ve never done a post exclusively on the subject. Until today.

Land of No Doubles

A little preface. In many parts of this fine country, grocery stores will “double” manufacturers coupons automatically at checkout. So if you have a $0.50 off coupon, it will work out to $1 off at checkout. The manufacturer will reimburse the store $0.50 (the stated value of the coupon), and the store will give the customer the additional $0.50 discount as part of their cost in doing business. Sometimes, stores will even have these “coupon tripling” events. I can only dream…

If you live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest like I do, you live in a place couponers refer to as the Land of No Doubles (or LOND, for short). This means grocery stores in our neck of the woods ordinarily do not double coupons.

There are a few exceptions that I’m aware of:

Kmart. They occasionally will include Washington in their double coupon events, but it has been a long, long time.
Safeway. Safeways in Oregon and SW Washington may double coupons. Not the Safeways in my area, though.
Summit/Tukwila Trading. These sister stores (in Puyallup and Tukwila) generally put out two double coupons in their weekly ad.
Albertsons. About once every other week, Albertsons will put out three double coupons in the ad that runs in the Sunday paper.

Albertsons “Twice the Value” Coupons

Now that you have a little context, let me show you what these puppies look like:

 

As mentioned, the most common place to find these is the one-page Albertsons flyer in your Sunday paper. At Albertsons, the weekly sale cycle runs from Wednesday through Tuesday. This means that the double coupons are generally good three days only: from Sunday through Tuesday.

Less commonly, we might see double coupons in the weekly ad. If that’s the case, they’d be good for seven days. Even less commonly, I’ve seen the double coupons in the main section of the paper, run as an ad. Regardless, I do a pretty good job of letting you know if we’re going to be getting them and if so, where to find them.

Finally I should mention these coupons get lots of names. They are officially called “Twice the Value” coupons, but I may often refer to them as “double coupons” or “doublers.” Bottom line, if you hear me mentioning getting your coupons doubled at Albertsons, this is exactly what I’m referring to.

How Double Coupons Work at Albertsons

It’s quite simple, actually. First, you must have the double coupons in hand. If you don’t get the Sunday paper, rest assured you can often find these flyers at Customer Service of your local Albertsons. There are usually three, but a couple weeks ago, we got four.

Next, take ANY manufacturer coupon you wish (up to $1 in value) and you are going to “pair” it with a double coupon.

Let’s take a real-life example from last week’s Albertsons list, shall we?

Keebler Graham Cracker Pie Crust $0.99
$1/3 printable coupon
Use a double coupon
Bottom line: $0.33 each

The pie crusts were $0.99 each. I shared with you a manufacturer’s printable coupon that would save you $1 when you bought three. So if you would’ve selected this deal, you would’ve headed to checkout with the following: three pie crusts, the $1/3 printable coupon, and one of the “Twice the Value” coupons.

The $1/3 printable coupon is from the manufacturer. Albertsons will submit this to them (in this case, Keebler) for reimbursement. The $1 from the double coupon is a discount the store is giving you.

Fine Print Stuff

You know I’m not going to leave out the fine print, right?

  • Coupons that are $1.01 or more cannot be doubled.
  • Stores are now doubling coupons even if they read “do not double.” This is because the store is choosing to give you the discount. They will not be asking the manufacturer to reimburse them more than the stated value.
  • “Buy one, get one free” coupons cannot be doubled.
  • Those great “off your next order” Catalina coupons cannot be doubled.
  • The coupons state “limit three per family shopping trip.” It’s each store’s perogative to define what that means. Some stores interpret that to mean you can only use three double coupons per day. Other stores interpret it more as “three per transaction” and will permit you to do multiple transactions. I ALWAYS ask.

So there you have it – Albertsons double coupons! Are they worth getting to understand? Absolutely in my book! These are one of the ways I end up snagging cheap – and even free – groceries.

By the way, we are getting double coupons this weekend. Check out my deals list for the week and see what you can snag for free!


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