A Bunch of Epcot Fairies

I totally forgot to add this last little bit of excitement from Disney's Epcot.  This was, by FAR, the girls' favorite stop in all of Epcot.  They have grown quite fond of fairies, goblins, mer-folk, and other fantasy creatures.

It's really cool.

Anyhow, we wanted to share what we saw of Disney's idea of the fairy world.  They paired the Fairy theme with the butterfly exhibit, which I think was absolutely brilliant.  If you go ... you should definitely check it out.

You can see a wide variety of different fairies and fairy homes.  And yep ... that last one is Stinkerbell ... err ... Tinkerbell.

And one of the most inspired ideas of the entire Fairy world was a series of fairy signature boards.  Each fairy had their own signature, with their own board.  Disney gave the kids a sheet of coloring paper.  The kids were able to walk to each board and get a 'crayon / pencil rubbing' of each fairy's signature.  At the end of the exhibit, they had signatures from all the fairies in a different spot on their coloring sheet.  Then they could take it home and color each fairy however they wanted, and have the signature right by the fairy.

This is an absolutely KILLER idea.  And I think all U.S. national parks should add this to their junior ranger badge programs.



Disney's Epcot Fish Aquarium

Kait was totally thrilled with this building in Disney's Epcot.  I had to grab a little bit of video, so she'd have something to look back on to remember it. 

I must admit, as a water enthusiast myself, this was definitely one of my favorite places to hang out while we were there.  I highly suggest stopping in, even if it's only for a few minutes ... it's worth it.  You'll see sharks, rays, turtles, dolphin, and all kinds of other fish.  It's very cool!



Getting paid to try something new!

So I was able to score a great deal on a new product today, Finish Quantumatic. Not only was it a great deal, I ended up being paid to bring it home and try it. By combining a Publix store coupon with a Manufactures coupon and waiting to buy that product until it was on sale is how it all worked!
I had heard that some of the Publix stores had the Finish Quantumatic Kit on sale for $4.99. Thankfully the stores nearest me had it on sale. And there is a store coupon for $3.00 off one and a manufactures printable coupon also for $3.00 off one. Using both coupons and having the item on sale I had $1.01 overage on each item. So I thought it was a good time to get more fruit! YUM!!
I got lots of grapes and a few more oranges. I also got a couple of  Capri Sun packs for a camping trip that we will be taking in a few weeks.
Before sales and coupons this would have cost. $110.45 and after sales and coupons I paid a whopping $1.92!! That is a savings of 98%. And it always make me feel even better to get such a great deal on fresh produce. And what better way to do it than overage! And I get to try a new type of dishwashing soap for free!
Also I went to a couple different Publix stores to get all these. They did not have all of them at one store.  Thankfully they are only a couple miles apart so it is worth the drive.

This is what all I got:
10- Finish Quantumatic starter kits.
2- Capri Sun Packs
3lbs- Oranges
6lbs- Grapes


Disney's Epcot in Orlando

Not too long ago, we were able to take part in Disney's Give a Day, Get a Day volunteer program.  We volunteered a day picking up garbage at a park in Bartow, FL.  And we were rewarded with a free day at a Disney park.

For our day at Disney, we decided to head over to Epcot in Orlando - since that is the only Disney park we hadn't been to yet.

It was a pretty cool park.  We got there about 9:20 in the morning - about 20 minutes after it opened.  And we left about 9:30 at night.  We were able to hit every major ride.  The biggest ones we got to ride a couple of times.

By the way - if you go - stop by Soarin right away and get a fast pass.  When I say right away, I mean as early in the morning as you can get there.  This ride has lines ALL DAY LONG, and the fast passes are gone by early morning.  So, get this pass first, so you can come back and not have the more than hour long wait.   We waited until 7:30 to get on this ride, and we were able to do a second quick trip through before the park closed. 
Here were a few of our highlights:

Here are the girls at the start of the day.

Test Track Car Ride - crash test dummy style ride.

The Fish area - this part was actually really good.  They had several large aquariums with live animals ... including a dolphin, a shark, rays, turtles, and tons of other fish.  We had no idea this was here, but I think Kait could have stayed in this building ALL DAY LONG.

Garden of the Future ... at 'The Land' ride.  This was another ride that was surprisingly neat.  They have greenhouses and gardens of the future, growing right now - in 2010.  This was VERY cool.  You can even do a 'behind the scenes' tour, but of course it costs lots of extra $$$ ... so we didn't do that part.  I can see that it would be a neat tour to take though.

Velcro Game show - this was a separate little comedy show.  The women running the show decided to torture a couple of men in the audience ... which meant I had to go up and compete.  Who knew I was such a mad diaper changing master.

Segway ride

Coke flavors from around the World - this was another cool stop in the park.  Coke sponsors this store, where you can taste the different flavors of their soda from other countries around the world.  And the samples are free.  This was a strange experience, tasting what other country's think are nice flavors.  WARNING - Watch out for Italy - their favorite flavor is something you won't want to repeat.

There was one more EXTRA SPECIAL part of the park.  But we'll save that to share with you later.  The girls loved this place, and we wanted to show you how cool it really was.  I'll just say this ... it has fairies, flowers, and butterflies all mixed in one place.  Oh My!



What God can do!

Here is how God multiplied my efforts and blessed us more than I could have imagined! Remember how I had won the $100.00 Publix gift card a little over a month ago. Well I just used the remaining balance the other day. I was excited to figure how much I was able to make that free money go. But was super shocked when I figured out the totals. I figured they would be good just not this good.
So with that gift card I was able to get $768.72 worth of groceries and cleaning products. And that is not including what I will be getting back in rebates and other gift cards. I will be getting back $29.50 in rebates from purchases with that card and I also got the $20.00 Publix gift cards from the scrubbing bubbles deal!
So add that and it is $818.22!!
To say that I am shocked is an understatement. There is no doubt that God has pressed down, shaken together and made to run over the blessings that he has given us! It has brought tears to my eyes that we have been given so much.
Praise be to God for all of his Blessings!


Money Making at Publix!!

So now that Publix is back to a new sale every week and I was so excited to see the new sales. I looked at the add and there really was nothing there that was all that good to me. Lots of things on sale that we do not eat or use. But then I got to looking a bit more and came up with a plan. And I was Doubly blessed by having it come out to a money making trip!
I got mostly cleaning supplies with a couple other deals thrown in for fun!
Here is the photo then I will tell you how I turned it in to more money...
4- Scrubbing Bubbles bathroom Power Sprayers-- FREE!
4- Scrubbing Bubbles Power Sprayer refills-- FREE!
6- Scrubbing bubbles tub cleaners-- FREE with $2.00 Overage
2- Scrubbing Bubbles Fresh Brush 2in1 Kits-- FREE!
2- Scrubbing Bubbles Cleaning Gels
4- Bottles Dentyne Gum. .14 each
2- Kraft 1lb shredded Cheese. $1.74 each

Total before sales and coupons $137.34. Total after sales and coupons $13.05.  I finished up the Gift card that I won so my out of pocket was only $7.56.
So I bet you are wondering how I made money on this. Well Here is what I did. This last Sunday in the coupon inserts there was a Target store coupon for a free $5.00 gift card with any 3 Scrubbing bubbles purchase. So I cut them out and when I went to do my shopping I stopped by the customer service desk and asked if they would take that coupon and instead of a Target gift card a Publix gift card would be given. The nice man behind the counter said I don't know why not. So I had 4 of those coupons and so I was given a Publix gift card for $20.00! Making this trip a $6.95 cent money maker! But if you take in to account that I only spent $7.56 out of pocket it is an even better money maker of $12.44!
I used Manufactures coupons that made the power sprayer refills free, and the Fresh Brush Kits Free. Then for everything els I combined Manufactures and store coupons to make them either free, free with overage or close to free.
So now I am stocked up on cleaning supplies!


Lots of Good Stuff from Publix

 So I have not posted because I was a bit dissapointed with the sales at Publix. Because of Easter they have a wonky sale schedule. Instead of keeping the once a week sales change they do it every week and a half or so. It really makes for a long time. Or at least I think so. Add to that that I have miss placed my receipt from the second transaction, and I am a bit bummed that I can not give exact totals.  But then when I really got to thinking about it I still did really well. So finally here you go.
I did my purchases in 2 different transactions for 2 reasons. 1, I had 2 $10.00 off $50.00 dollar coupons and 2, because they had a special where if you buy $25.00 worth of groceries you can get a $50.00 gas card for $40.00. So since it is hard to save on gas I decided to get 2 gift cards and save that way!

Here is purchase #1...

8- Coffee Mate creamers- FREE with Overage!
2- 7UP 2 Liters-- FREE with overage
2- Pepsi 2 Liters-- FREE
4- Progresso soups--??
2- Betty Crocker Brownie mixes-- .30 each
6- Yoplait fiber one yougurt packs-- .25 each
2- Bags Doritos-- $1.50 each
4- Nabisco Flipside crackers-- $1.00 each
4- Quaker True Delights Granola squares -- .55 each
2- Emerald Cashews-- $1.14 each
Total Before sales and coupons $88.43, After $10.24. A savings of 90%. Paid for with the gift card that I won, so nothing out of pocket!!

Here is the second purchase...

 6- Coffee Mate creamers-- FREE with overage
2- Betty Crocker Brownie mixes. .30 each
2- Soft scrub cleaners-- Free with overage
1- Bayer asprin-- FREE with overage
12- cans Progresso black beans .43 each
2- Emerald Cashews-- $1.14 each
4- Stoufers family lasagna $1.49 each
2lb apples--??
I think that I paid about the same amount for this purchase as the first. And I got another gas card. Nothing out of pocket for me!!!
Unfortunatly I only have a little over $5.00 left on the card. Boy have I sure made the most of it!
And to top it off I was able to pay only $80.00 for $100.00 worth of gas cards. That money came out of our gas budget for the month, not the publix gift card.  It is a nice bonus to be able to save on something like gas that is what it is and you just have to pay. With this deal it was like getting a free fill up!!

Thankfully Publix is back to their regular schedule for the sales!! Makes me happy to go shopping again!
Also to let you know I am going to be doing a post soon about savings in other stores soon. I have had a few people ask me how to save this much on their groceries when they do not have a Publix to shop at. So I am working on that because I know that you can save just as much, if not more, than I can at the stores you have locally! So be watching for that!

Thanks for sharing in my deals!


Keeley-tude ...

We're watching a TV commercial about a BRAND NEW feature on a cutting edge car.

What's the feature?

The world's first 'blind spot' notification system.
If you're driving and you go to change lanes.  And by chance, there's a car coming up in your blind spot, it'll let you know with an astonishing new feature that 3/4 of all drivers in America need.

 -- The blind spot notification buzzer --

WOW is an understatement!

Keeley's question after the commercial was over ... 
"So, does that mean ...  a blind person can drive it?"

Oh ... man ... this kid is hilarious.


My Date with Keeley

After we picked up such a NICE gift for Kait, I realized it wouldn't be very nice to leave Keeley completely out of the loop.  So, Chris gave me the green light to take Keeley out for a special night.

We decided to go out for dinner and a show.

We stopped into Crispers and shared a Caribbean flatbread.  And then we watched "How to Train Your Dragon".  It turned out to be a super fun night.  We just hung out together, and chatted about life and books and the future.

The movie is excellent.  It has a great story line, and they throw in some good humor as well.  It was one of the best movies I've seen in a while.  Definitely worth watching.

Here's Keeley and I - before we left for the night - still looking quite fresh after our bike ride.

New Bike for My Girl

So, Kait has been getting older. I know ... right?

She has gotten to the point that her BMX bike is no longer sufficient for her long legs. This coincided with a magical bump in out income ... a tax return. With the stars and planets align like that, we try to put it all to its maximum potential, so we picked up a new bike for Kait.

Truth be told, I wanted to go for something even nicer than this. Something that could last her until she is able to afford her own out in the real world ... where I'm sure she'll want to take her own bike tours and such.

This one turned out to be a decent buy, at a fair price. And my Dad might think highly of this one, since he started off with a similar brand, back in his early days on the bike.  So we took the plunge.  So far, she LOVES the color.  And for a girl ... that's pretty important.

Then we also decided to do a nice, long trip to test out the new bike.  So we did a 28 mile bike ride yesterday - which I mentioned last night.  Here's the odometer proof.  I've got the odometer as a gift, and we were so excited to use it to see how far we rode.

After the trip we were all tired and WIPED out.  It was a great ride though.  And Kait did awesome on her bike. 
Here's a few other shots from the trip.

Catch you soon!