Saturday, February 11, 2012

Pinterest Help

This isn't actually a frugal tip but I have recently entered the world of Pinterest.  I learned a few things this week that I thought I'd pass on.

What is Pinterest?  Pinterest is a virtual pinboard. Pinterest allows you to organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. You can browse pinboards created by other people to discover new things and get inspiration from people who share your interests.

People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and share their favorite recipes.

What is a Pin?  A pin is an image added to Pinterest. A pin can be a dded from a website using the Pin It button, or you can upload images from your computer. Each pin added using the Pin It button links back to the site it came from.

What is a Board? A board is a set of pins. A board can be created on any topic, such as Cool Posters, Recipes For Dinner, or Wishlist. You can add as many pins to a board as you want.

How do you sign up?  Pinterest is currently invite-only. You can request an invite from us or you can be invited by someone who is already a part of Pinterest.

When you receive an invite, you can register via Facebook Connect or connect through Twitter.

Pinterest itself has a lot of useful tips including installing a "Pin It" button to your favorites bar so you can pin anything you see on the web.

If you have an iphone, you can take pictures of anything & pin them to your "boards".
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Friday, February 10, 2012

Menards 101

Menards is 21 south of 30  It’s like a Lowe’s or Home Depot, but they also have food at great prices
Every week in their sale flier, there are items available for great prices after sending in a rebate. Many are free after rebate (FAR), but they have a clause that you must spend $10 in non-rebate items to qualify for the free rebates. This clause does not affect items that are not FAR. Your rebate is only available in the form of a Menards "rebate check", meaning you use it just as you would a gift card.
So, you go choose your items, and the first time you shop, you will pay full price Out of Pocket (OOP). Your receipt will have rebate receipts attached, and each will have a rebate number on it. Near the exit door, a counter has all the rebate forms in numerical order. Choose the ones you need.
At home, fill out your forms (I use address labels so it takes one second each), address your envelopes, make copies or scanned versions, put in the forms and rebate receipt and you are done. I don't even have to cut out UPC's. In about three weeks, your rebate "checks" should start coming in the mail.
The next time you shop, use the checks instead of cash, and depending on how much you spend, you can greatly reduce the chance of ever having to spend money OOP there again. If you do have to spend $10 to qualify for a free rebate item, this can also come from your checks.

Drugstore 101

Rite Aid

Before you pay  - sign up for UP Rewards
·         Using your Wellness card, you can earn dollars off a single item.  You also earn 1 point for every dollar you spend.  UP rewards print at the bottom of your receipt.  These expire in 2 weeks so watch your dates.  If you include your phone number, they can look up your number without the card.
Rite Aid offers many deals each month in the form of single check rebates (SCR). A list of the rebates for the current month can be found in the rebate directory at the front of the store.
Rite Aid store coupons, single check rebates, and manufacturer coupons can all be combined for great savings.

  • Load2Card
  • weekly ads  
  • coupon booklets found in the store (released periodically)
  • Video Values coupons (watch an advertisement video and print a Rite Aid coupon)
  • tearpads frequently found in the cosmetics display area
Here’s how you do a SCR deal at Rite Aid:
1. Buy the rebate item at Rite Aid. Keep your receipt.
2. Create a SCR account at
3. Once logged into your SCR account, enter the receipt information. Within a day or two, the rebate will show whether it was accepted or not (as long as you buy the correct stuff, it will be accepted).  I don’t use the item until I make sure the rebate shows up in case I need to return it.
4. Submit that month’s rebates at the end of the month. You can only “submit” your rebates one time each month. For example, if you hit the “submit” button on January 15, you cannot do any rebates that may come up for the rest of January. You will want to wait until the end of the month to submit.
5. Rite Aid will mail you one check that can be cashed at your bank or at Rite Aid for cash.

Before You Pay - sign up for a CVS Extra Care card.
·         This can be done in-store or online. Once you have your card, create an account at and register your card. This way you will be able to view your rewards online and earn rewards when making online purchases. It is important to check “Yes” when asked if you would like to receive emails from CVS.   If you include your phone number, they can look up your number without the card.

  • weekly ads  
  • coupon booklets found in the store (released periodically)
  • coupons that print at the kiosk inside the door
  • coupons e-mailed to you
What Are Extra Care Bucks– You earn Extra Care Bucks (otherwise known as ECBs) by purchasing qualifying items. Each time you purchase one of these items and use your Extra Care card, a slip will be printed at the bottom of your receipt showing the amount you have earned.

Always scan your Extra Care Bucks card at the kiosk when you enter the store for more coupons.
The slips can be used like cash, though they do have some restrictions: prescriptions, gift cards, money orders, postage stamps, pre-paid cards and  are excluded (restrictions may vary by area) and no cash back can be given if the ECBs you are paying with total more than your actual total.

Remember to save your slips and keep them in a safe place. Each slip has a barcode which the cashier will have to scan when you check out. The barcode links them to your Extra Care account so they can only be used by you with your card. They also have expiration dates, usually a month, and even though some cashiers can “push through” expired ECBs, you don’t want to risk losing them.

ECB deals can be found in the weekly flyer and list how many of an item can be purchased and still earn ECBs. This limit usually ranges from 1 to 5 of each item.

You will also earn 2% of your in-store and online purchases in the form of ECBs and $1 in ECBs for every two prescriptions purchased in-store or online. These ECBs will print out on the bottom of your receipt once every three months. Remember to have your Extra Care card scanned with each purchase or your account with not be given credit.

One of the biggest days for deals at CVS is Thanksgiving.  I will often do multiple transactions on this day or if I have a lot of deals so I don’t end up with lots of ECBs to use.  If there is a line, be courteous & go to the back of the line after each transaction.