Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Cooking With Coupons - Rhodes Rolls Christmas Tree

Ok - by now you must know I LOVE RHODES ROLLS!!! They are so light and fluffy and super tasty.  With the holiday season upon they are also on sale at amazing prices (find the best deal HERE) plus don't forget to use your coupons for additional savings!  Honestly, it's almost as inexpensive as making your own dough without any of the sticky mess!  Rhodes thinks up the cutest things to make with their dough and I try a new one every season.  I've made anything from Easter   Lambs to Snowmen  and they've all been a hit.  Here's the latest I'll be trying.  I'm making these on Friday and  taking them to Grandma's on Saturday or I'd show you my own pics.

This is so simple it's almost impossible to mess up! (FYI - I prefer using the bagged rolls that need to rise a few hours.)  I love that I can make delicious yet inexpensive dishes for my family with the limited time I have available!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Cooking With Coupons – Spiral Sliced Ham

By now all remnants of turkey leftovers have long vanished from your refrigerator along with the endless turkey sandwiches, turkey noodle soup and turkey casseroles. For my family, it’s time to start looking forward to a delicious holiday ham. There’s nothing better than a warm and sweet spiral sliced ham for Christmas dinner at my house. And while I’m a huge fan of these inexpensive pre-cut hams I also love the endless meal possibilities of leftovers. If you season your ham just right, the well-crafted flavors can tantalize your taste buds all week long.

Spiral Spiced Holiday Ham

9-10 lb Pre-cooked spiral slice ham
20 oz. Can pineapple chunks
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/8 Teaspoon allspice

Place spiral ham in a 9x13 casserole dish or large roasting pan. Cover with foil and warm ham according to package directions or at 325 degrees for 12-14 minutes per pound. Mix Pineapple, brown sugar and allspice in separate bowl. With one hour cooking time left remove foil and pour pineapple mixture into pan. Spoon juice over ham and in between slices every 15 minutes until the ham is fully warmed. Cut ham away from bone and reserve bone, juices and any leftover pineapple in the refrigerator.

Sweet Ham Bone Soup:

1-2lbs Dry white great northern beans
2-3 C. diced ham
1 Tbs. minced garlic
Ham bone
Leftover cooked pineapple
Remaining ham juices (will congeal after refrigeration)
Pinch of Allspice

Presoak dry beans over night. After soaking rinse beans and remove any grit or any undesirable beans. Place ham bone in the bottom of a 6 qt. Crock Pot. Add soaked beans. Add enough water to cover the beans and bone. Add ham, garlic, pineapple, congealed ham juices and allspice. Cover and cook on  high for 6-7 hours or until beans are soft. Add more liquid if necessary while cooking to cover beans. Remove bone and pineapple before serving.

Ham Scalloped Potatoes:

6 large potatoes thinly sliced
1 can (10.75 oz) condensed cream of chicken, celery or mushroom soup
1 can (10.5 oz) chicken gravy
1 C. milk
2 C. diced ham
1/2 Teaspoon Schilling Salt ‘n Spice or ¼ C. diced onions and salt & pepper to taste.

Mix soup, milk, gravy and seasoning in a large bowl, add potatoes and ham and coat well. Pour mixture into a greased 9x13 casserole dish. Cover with foil and bake at 375 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Remove foil and top with shredded cheddar cheese and cook for 5 more minutes to melt if desired.

Get ready to save the day with these mouth-watering holiday ham recipes this Christmas!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

A Savvy Tip: December = Hot Clearance Deals!

December = Hot Beauty Deals!
Now, more than ever, is the best time to be beautiful!  While I honestly believe true beauty lies within our inner spirit and humanity, a little extra lip gloss doesn't hurt, now does it?

December and January are hotbeds of personal hygeine clearance as name brand manufacturers drastically mark down shelf prices on "last years model" of hair care, cosmetics and more in order to make room for the new and improved!

Last January a national drugstore chain began clearancing all their old Pantene hair care products to make way for a redesigned package.  Not only did they reduce the cost for the entire line of products, but allowed shoppers to pair that with manufacturer coupon savings. When this happens, it’s clearance savings at its best!  Savvy Shoppers were able to stock up on bottles of FREE Pantene!

Kandoo Handsoap = $0.24 after  
$1.00 coupon and clearance markdowns

As I strolled the aisle of Smiths last week, making my Smiths Coupon Round Up Event Freebies & Deals List, I couldn't help but notice the plethora of beauty product clearance tags.  I scored on several deals at 70% - 90% off. For example I found 3 Kandoo children's hand soaps marked down to $1.24.  I had 3 $1.00/1 Kandoo Coupons and so I bought them for $0.24 (Note the empty shelf :-)  I also found Vaseline Sheer Infusion Lotion for $1.89 after $1.00/1 coupons as well.  I love this lotion but would never pay the almost $6 shelf price!

Just by watching the clearance tags you too can be rewarded with hot beauty savings this December.  There's nothing wrong with polishing up the outer beauty to go along with your inner beauty as well!

A Savvy Tip: Browser Security - Why can't I print coupons?

For those of us who surf the web on a regular basis whether for printable coupons, hot deals or freebie finds, upgrading your browser software, like Firefox, Safari, Internet Explorer or Google Chrome is a must!  Obviously new security features are enhanced with each upgrade, but did you know that within the last few weeks "researchers have found dozens of websites have been secretly harvesting lists of places that their users previously visited online, everything from news articles to bank sites!"  While passwords aren't at risk,  some internet companies are obsessed with tracking users' behavior so they can profile you easily.  -

According to Yahoo Finance, "The technique the University of California, San Diego researchers investigated is called "history sniffing" and is a result of the way browsers interact with websites and record where they've been.

Although security experts have known for nearly a decade that such snooping is possible, the latest findings offer some of the first public evidence of sites exploiting the problem. Current versions of the Firefox and Internet Explorer browsers still allow this, as do older versions of Chrome and Safari, the researchers said.

The researchers studied far more sites -- a total of the world's 50,000 most popular sites -- and said many more behaved suspiciously, but couldn't be proven to use history sniffing. Nearly 500 of the sites studied had characteristics that suggested they could infer browsers' histories, and more than 60 transferred browser histories to the network. But the researchers said they could only prove that 46 had done actual "history hijacking."

The latest versions of Google Inc.'s Chrome and Apple Inc.'s Safari have automatic protections for this kind of snooping, researchers said. Mozilla Corp. said the next version of Firefox will have the same feature, adding that a workaround exists for some older versions as well.

Microsoft Corp. noted that Internet Explorer users can enable a private browsing mode that prevents the browser from logging the user's history, which prevents this kind of spying. But private browsing also strips away important benefits of the browser knowing its own history, such as displaying Google links you've visited in different colors than those you haven't."

WOW!!!  For safety's sake make sure you select "yes" when you're asked whether or not to automatically upgrade your browser software!

The Downside:  

There is a downside to upgrading your browser though.  Almost every time you upgrade your browser, printable coupon sites like, and won't be ready for the upgraded security features.  That means you'll be temporarily unable to print coupons and get a "Coupon Printer Not Installed" message, even though you already have it installed or the "please enable Java" message, when it's already enabled.  Just wait a week or two for the coupon sites to catch up or try using a different browser for a while.  Right now I have to print brick coupons in Google Chrome, Redplum in Safari and still cannot print coupons.  Oh well, they'll catch up too! It's worth the temporary printing inconvenience to make sure I'm as safe as possible online!

Monday, November 29, 2010

A Savvy Tip - FREE Dewalt Pedicures

Ok - don't laugh until you've tried it!  Sure I've got a storage room (or two) full of hot deals and cheap groceries but I also have dry feet and cracked heels from shopping all day!  Well, maybe it's not from shopping since it runs in my family. From my dad and mom to my sisters and brother, dry feet have plagued us for years.  But my Macgyver husband (also known as the toolman) is so clever as usual that he devised the best pedicure ever to wipe away the dry and bring back the soft & supple - a Dewalt Orbital sander of course!

Beauticians beware, you may not like this, but my husband regularly gives me and my entire family (yup, even dad) the power sander pedicure.  We're considering painting them pink and selling them on Ebay ;-)  He uses new 60 grit sandpaper to quickly smooth and refine our delicate feet.  Delicate - yah right!  If you're ticklish this one may be hard to take but for me it feels amazing!  With a little power polish and lotion my feet won't snag my nylons for quite a while.  (When my feet start feeling warm it means he's stayed too long in one spot and the dry skin is all gone.  Move the sander to a new area so you don't sander burn your feet!)

If you've got an orbital sander tucked away in the corner of your garage, dust it off and get smoothing!

On a side note, what an awesome hubby I've got who would sand the feet of his mother and father-in-law as well as all his sister-in-laws.  I love him to death as well as all of his ingenious devices with or without the use of duct tape!

Macgyver and his power tools!
Mom, Dad and Macgyver

Savvy Cooking - Home Made Sparkling Cider

I love Martinelli's Sparkling Apple Cider as much as the next New Year's toaster but sometimes the price can be outrageous!  I've learned that I can make my own sparkling juice at a ridiculously low price any time of the year!  It's so simple you won't believe how much it tastes like the real thing!

Home Made Sparkling Cider:

(2) 64 oz bottles of 100% apple juice (Langers is my favorite)
(1 - 1 1/2) 2 ltr. bottle of 7up

Mix together in a glass beverage dispenser (for the fanciness factor) and no one will know you paid less than the price of a full bottle of brand name bubbly for 7 1/2 bottles worth of hand made brew!  Yum!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Savvy How To - Cyber Monday Online Shopping Safety

Phew, for me, the hysteria of Black Friday has passed in the night like a herd of buffalo on a midnight stampede!  Black Friday sales are truly the rush of adrenaline some of us need to kick off our holiday shopping. You may have snagged a few hot deals, and quite possibly you missed out on a few amazing deals that were targeted by thousands of other holiday shoppers.  If you’re disappointed in your Black Friday gift haul never fear, more spectacular discount shopping days are here. 

Cyber Monday – Cyber Monday, the Monday after Thanksgiving, is the newer, hipper Black Friday, one might say. With some of the hottest prices of the year, online retailers typically offer similar savings to Black Friday sales, but you can shop from the comfort and warmth of your own home!  Online shopping does require some additional safety preparations though.

-Make sure your computer has the most recent updates installed for anti-virus and anti-spyware software and spamware!

- Shop ONLY on trustworthy, well-known websites. Some deals from unfamiliar websites may just be to good to be true.

- Confirm your online purchase is secure. Always look in the lower-right corner for the “lock” symbol before paying. “If there are any doubts about a site, BBB recommends right-clicking anywhere on the page and selecting “Properties.” This will reveal the page’s real URL (website address) to ensure it matches the URL in the browser’s address bar. If they don’t match, you may have been directed to a fake, potentially dangerous website.”

- Pay with Paypal. Paypal allows you to shop without sharing your financial information with every site you visit.  Setting up an account is free and easy.  Just transfer money into a  PayPal account via moneypak, debit or credit and use the money to pay for all your purchases.  Retailers never see your bank or credit card information when you use PayPal

- Keep Records. Always save a copy of purchase confirmations and emails, just to be sure.  If you have trouble with a delivery, all contact information should be provided in your confirmation.

Week Before Christmas – Most retailers began offering discounted holiday items around Halloween, but if you’re a procrastinator you may be in luck!   Historically, the week before Christmas has some of the hottest prices of the year for last minute Christmas gifts!  Sure, stores will be jam packed with throngs of last minute deals seekers and lines will undoubtedly be long, but if you’ve got the patience you can score some great deals!  Watch for retailers to slash prices on anything from TVs to sweaters just days before Santa is scheduled to arrive.

Catch the Christmas Spirit and a few great deals in the process as you shop for holiday gifts this year.  But, most of all, don’t get caught going over pre-set personal budget limits.  There’s nothing worse than starting the year in debt!  

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Savvy Giving - Food Bank Shopping Spree Update

Susan and Amy Shopping for the Utah Food Bank - Photo Courtesy of the Daily Herald
Can I just say how much fun I had on Saturday shopping for the Utah Food Bank at Reams In Springville, Ut!!!  Susan and Michelle were able to come shop with me and we filled 8 carts full of food to overflowing!  We saved over $300 in coupons and because we only bought savvy sale priced items we ended up with over in $1334 food for only $500!!!!  In fact it got to one point that I told everyone we might have to start paying full price for groceries or we would be there all day trying to spend just $500.  We kept getting deal after deal and the ladies reminded me that even if it took all day to spend $500 we should do it - AMEN!   I have to add that the young man who checked us out was quite impressed as the receipt just kept printing and printing and printing!  Thanks to Reams Springville, The Daily Herald, Michelle, Susan and all those who met and helped us there like Craig C., the Hammons, TwoCuff, Asia, Kailee and Ruth N.

My Coupon Portfolio of Savings :-) Photo courtesy of The Daily Herald
Loading The Truck With Our Haul!
Susan, Amy, Michelle from

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Savvy Tip: Protect Your Online Identity

With the plethora of hot online coupons, contests, freebies and all the amazing online holiday shopping deals these days, online safety has never been more important!

When filling out registration forms including your name, address, phone number and email address have you ever worried about who has your information?  I have!  Yes, I know that if anyone tried hard enough they could get all your "digits" online, but I still feel like protecting myself when possible.

Here are 2 of my favorite ways to protect valuable personal information:

Create a FREE email account:

If you're worried about spam or even the occasional cyber stalker, consider creating your own free Gmail or Yahoo email account.  Make the email address name memorable like  Send ONLY your deal related emails there and you can worry less about getting hacked or spammed from your personal email address.

Create a FREE Google Voice #:

I hate putting my real phone number on registration forms.  Honestly, if you're entering a sweepstakes or other contest you'll have to put a legit phone # in order for someone to call you back.  If you fake a number on this one you can get disqualified to win or you might win and no one will be able to let you know - Ahhh!  You'll also have to enter a valid phone number when registering to shop at major retailers online.  There's a simple way around this dilemma - just choose a FREE Google Voice phone numberGoogle Voice gives you a single phone number that rings all of your phones, saves your voicemail online, and transcribes your voicemail to text for FREE (This is FREE text messages folks.  Reply via email and Google Voice will transcribe to SMS!). Other cool features include the ability to  listen in on messages while they're being left, block unwanted callers, and make cheap international calls. I love using Google Voice and now I don't have to give out my real phone number.  You could even use this phone number on business cards and no one will ever have to know your home #!

It's worth setting up some free online protection services if you intend to do business online!  Watch for more online safety tutorials this week like Facebook and how to detect Scam websites! (Can you tell I'm excited for Cyber Monday!)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Savvy Cooking: Edible Thanksgiving Name Cards

If you're looking for a fun way to spice up your Thanksgiving tablescape try these adorable edible Cornucopia name cards from!  They are so easy to make and an absolute delight for your guests!


  • Sugar Cones

  • Runts, Candy Corns or other small fruit shaped candies

  • Ribbon

  • Decorator Icing (Or melted chocolate chips poured in a Ziploc baggie - just cut off the tip of the bag and squeeze out melted chocolate for a homemade decorator bag!)


Using decorator icing or melted chocolate as glue, attach one end of a strip of ribbon around the sugar cone by placing a drop of icing on the cone and laying the ribbon on top of the icing.  Wrap the ribbon around the cone, add another dab of icing overlap the ribbon and press ribbon firmly.  Attach a candy corn with another dab of icing.  Write your guest's name on the sugar cone with icing or chocolate and allow to dry.  Fill cone with fruit shaped candies and enjoy.

    If you opt for the melted chocolate chips route here's what to do:

    Put 5-6 oz of chocolate chips (half a bag) in a microwave safe bowl.  Set the microwave at 50% power.  Cook for 40 seconds and then stir well.  Repeat with 30 second intervals until melted.

    Sugar Cone Cornucopia Video Link

    Monday, November 15, 2010

    A Savvy Opportunity

    I love this time of year. Not only do we get to snag some killer Christmas Gifts and deals but our thoughts are also turned to others whom our "savvy shopping" skills can help.  I've got a set budget already and coupons to match!  Join me on Saturday November 20th, 11 am at Reams in Springville as I shop for the Utah Food Bank!!  It will be fun to fill my cart and see how far I can stretch the deals for charity! 

    Do you have a question for me or just want to say hello?  Meet me at Reams for great produce deals and advice!  See you there!

    Friday, November 12, 2010

    Savvy How To: Mystery Shopping Tips

    Get paid to go to Disneyland!
    Have you ever wondered if mystery shopping/secret shopping was a scam?  Mystery shopping can actually be a fun money-maker when you follow some basic criteria.  I was a mystery shopper for years and I’ve secretly analyzed the up-sale, tactics, cleanliness and all around employee and store integrity of cell phone companies, restaurants, retailers and even Disneyland and been paid to do so.  My best shopping experience included free entrance and parking at Disneyland, free breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks, plus $90 in free park souvenirs!  That’s right – Disneyland for FREEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

    So what is mystery shopping and what does it entail?  Mystery shopping is simply a tool used by marketing retail companies, hired by local businesses, to measure and grade the quality of services offered, store maintenance levels or employee attitudes at predetermined locations.  Usually a “normal” shopper is asked to enter, without disclosing their identity, a store within a specified date and time to buy or return products, ask targeted questions or simply check out landscaping and store  cleanliness, and then fill out a survey with detailed, non-biased descriptions about their experiences.  Shoppers then submit receipts to be reimbursed and are typically paid an additional fee for their services.  Three of my favorite mystery shopping companies are, and “BestMark seeks individuals with a keen eye, who are extremely conscientious and responsible in honoring their commitments. Successful BestMark mystery shoppers will be able to meet deadlines, follow detailed instructions and write fact-based reports to provide our clients with actionable data.”

    Mystery shopping can be fun and financially rewarding if you stick to these rules:

    NEVER pay a company to be a mystery shopper – they pay you! There are companies who offer to train you to become a secret shopper, but that is not necessary.  You don’t need to pay to join a shopping list either.  Reputable companies offer timely reimbursement and don’t take any fees for your service.

    Practice writing brief, non-emotional essays- just the facts ma’am, just the facts!  Don’t say “the store was a disgusting filthy mess” – rather, “the store was cluttered with debris”.  Many companies also grade your application form on writing skills.  A practice shop is often required to determine if your application will be accepted.  You must get at least a B to pass – and no spelling typos please.

    Get referred!  If you have friends who mystery shop, ask them to refer you to the companies they use.  That way you’ll have an easier chance of being accepted and you’ll know you’re working with a reputable company.

    Don’t cancel!  Only accept mystery shops you are confident you can fulfill.  Canceling a shop is highly frowned upon.  You can sometimes reschedule within a small window of time, but don’t let this be a habit or you’ll be scheduled for fewer shops in the future.  Determine if you are responsible enough to complete the specified tasks before you accept.

    Keep your job a secret too!  If you’re taking your kids on a mystery shop and they blurt it out to a store full of employees, your cover is blown and the job is off.  Make sure taking your kids is ok, (it usually is – though you may want to leave them at home so you can concentrate on the job at hand or bring an extra adult to help out) and keep your cool.  That also means not acting nervous in front of employees.  They don’t know who you are and they aren’t expecting it to be you unless your palms are sweaty and you’re stuttering out pre-rehearsed questions.  Have a little fun and act it up!

    Check the job boards regularly!  Most shops are offered on a first come first served basis.  The early bird gets the worm on this one.  Make sure you log in daily to check for the highest paid and easiest shops as they go quickly.  Fast food and restaurant shops are some of the most highest sought after jobs, so when you see one of these offered grab it quickly.

    Meet the requirements! Before you sign up with any company, just note you will likely need: a high speed internet connection, a scanner/fax machine, and reliable transportation and be at least 21 or older.

    Remember that while mystery shopping is fun – it’s still work and the better you are as a shopper the more exclusive shops you‘ll be offered.  Participating in shops will most likely be a part time hobby – not necessarily a full time income for most shoppers.  If you’re looking for an easy job with flexible hours and little fun, then mystery shopping might be right up your alley.

    If you’re interested in trying your hand at mystery shopping, there are hundreds of companies offering these services; however finding them is sometimes kept a secret too. You can Google “mystery shopping” but the best way to find potential companies is to ask your mystery shopping friends for referrals and start submitting your applications to see if additional shoppers are needed in your area.  It may take a few months for your application to be accepted, but keep trying and it should pay off in the end.

    UPDATE:  A local Utah Mystery Shopping company needs shoppers right now!!! Read More HERE!

    Wednesday, November 10, 2010

    Savvy After School Snacks

    I can remember as a child coming home from school every day to a snack prepared lovingly by my mother.  It was never fancy.  Almost always it was fresh cut apple wedges or oranges fanned out on a 70's style melamine plate :-).  Regardless of the cost, the mere fact that she cared enough to cut up an apple made truly feel loved through this simple act of kindness.  As a mother with children of my own, I try to make sure my kids have a healthy afterschool snack waiting for them when they get off the bus.  It's a tradition worth keeping!

    "Gobble Me Up" After School Snack
    As I was browsing through Family Fun this week, I saw a great Thanksgiving Snack that I'm making for my kids this week.  It's snack love + Infinity King's X (that mean's "it's the best and you can't top it", in my family).


    1. Arrange apple and clementine or navel orange slices on a plate as shown, and lay a cored pear half on top.
    2. Use scissors to snip small triangles from an orange slice and tuck them under the pear to form the feet.
    3. Finally, use peanut butter to attach mini chocolate chip eyes, a nut beak, and a dried cranberry snood.
    Try this savvy healthy afterschool snack for your kids this week and share the love!
    • What's your kids favorite after school snack?

    Tuesday, November 9, 2010

    Savvy How To - My Favorite Black Friday Tip

    The unofficial start of Christmas shopping begins in just a few days with retailers offering doorbuster deals, early bird specials and an array of loss leaders intending to turn customers into energized swarms of shoppers.  Why offer such amazing sale prices to the masses?  Black Friday is the day that retailers hope to go from being in the red to being in the black (making money).

    Shhh, I'll let you all in on one of my favorite secret Black Friday Shopping Tips!

    Buy the Wrong Size/Color:  If a store is out of your size or desired color, buy whatever style they have in stock and exchange it later! I have bought XXL jeans that no one wanted only to return them a week or two later for the appropriate size!  Love it! (Just make sure the item is regularly carried at that store and not a special make/model specifically for Black Friday only!)

    Check out the rest of my Black Friday Shopping Tips HERE!

    Sunday, November 7, 2010

    Just My Two Cents: Panic Shopping vs. Pantry Shopping

    Being a savvy shopper is more than just using coupons and shopping sales, it’s using common sense when applying these shopping tactics at the store and at home. In my savvy world there’s two different kinds of shopping, panic shopping and pantry shopping. 

    Many shoppers apply the panic shopping model to their grocery trips on weekly basis.  If you’ve ever made a weekly menu and then created a shopping list to supply the ingredients for those meals you have panic shopped.  Panic shopping is the simple act, though an expensive one, of shopping in the moment based on immediate desires, not needs.  As an example, let’s say you’ve decided to have tacos on Tuesday but you have no ground beef.  You now have to run to the store and buy taco meat at full shelf price if no one has it on an advertised sale instead of using previously packed and frozen beef from your freezer which should have been purchased at a discount.  You had to have the taco meat for Tuesday’s meal so you likely had to sacrifice a larger portion of your budget than desired to allow for the meat expense.  And what about chips and salsa or any other taco night ingredients – you’ll have to buy those as well if you’re out.

    Instead of planning family meals based on wants, I choose meals based on ingredients already on hand and “in stock” in my own personal store – my pantry.  My daughter often calls our basement storage rooms “the store”.  She questioned once why it actually looked like a store.  First, let me say that while I’m not clinically diagnosed with organizational OCD and I don’t HAVE to turn all the labels the same direction on the shelves in order to find inner happiness I choose to do so because it looks nice! (Ok – maybe borderline OCD.)  When I’m planning meals for the week I shop from my pantry first, meaning I prepare weekly meals from food I have already purchased at significant discounts found by watching sales and using coupons.  I literally shop my pantry for a meal before I shop at the actual store.  Stocking up on family favorites and buying more than one can or even case of a family favorite when it’s in my price point, the point at which the price is low enough that I’m willing to buy it, ensures that my pantry will hold a bevy of recipe conscious ingredients at all times. 

    Once you’ve established your pantry, or even if you’re working to establish it, shopping from the front page of local grocery ads for additional fresh ingredients, packaged goods and produce can also save shoppers a significant amount of money.  The front page of a grocery or retail ad is often referred to as  a “loss leader”.  The items displayed for sale on this page are typically significantly discounted deals intended to lead you in to the store to buy even more product.  This ensures a great deal can be found on page 1.  Consider using these items in your meal planning lists to supplement current pantry ingredients.

    Saving money on your monthly grocery bill goes hand in hand with saving time and money in the kitchen. Panic shopping is expensive and stressful in my opinion.  A little pantry planning can save you hundreds of dollars a year and hours of unnecessary time at the store.  

    Wednesday, November 3, 2010

    A Savvy Craft - Tissue Paper Flowers

    Tissue Paper Flowers
    I'm famous (in my family) for being the Martha Stewart of Utah County.  I love making inexpensive, but fun craft projects out of ordinary products, like my frugal wrapping paper bows.  Yesterday I was asked to teach a youth group how to make some tissue paper flowers to decorate for an upcoming event.  These flowers are so gorgeous that no one will know they only cost about $0.05 a piece to make.  I have made these flowers dozens of times to decorate birthday parties, bridal showers, Mothers Day gifts and church events.  The Savvy clan and I have even turned them into giant flower pens using floral tape and stick pens.  I even made them to decorate the church gym for my daughters baptism.  We have an  enormous extended family and the church was the only place to hold the luncheon.  I wanted the room to be a bright celebration of this exciting day and used tissue paper flowers to spruce things up. (And of course I got a deal on all that food :-)

    I thought I would share this simple and inexpensive decorating idea with you.

    Family Luncheon decorated with Tissue Paper Flowers
    Tissue paper flower table arrangements - I even sprinkled matching Laffy Taffy and flower erasers (from the dollar store) across the tables for the kids.  They loved it and all got to take a flower home.

    Project Ingredients:

    • Chenille Pipe Cleaners
    • Tissue Paper
    • Scissors

    Tissue Paper Flower How To:

    Step #1:

    Fold 2 Pieces of Tissue Paper in half and then in half again - see below
    Tissue Paper Folds

    Step #2:

    Using Scissors cut folded edges to create (8) 1/4 sheet pages

    Step #3:

    Accordion fold tissue paper sheets and secure in the middle with any color pipe cleaner

    Step #4:

    Trim both ends of accordion with scallops, points or fringe for different flower effects
    Scallop, Point & Fringe white tissue paper flowers made last night for a church function

     Step #5:

           Beginning with the top sheet, pull tissue paper up to the center of the flower.  Pull from the base of the paper, not the tips, to avoid tearing. 

    Complete Flower

    You'll end up with gorgeous multi-colored or solid color flowers which you can display in vases, tape to gifts or garnish a party table with.  These flowers are truly easy to make - my 6 year old and 10 year old made these:

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