RSS Feed

‘Saving Money’ Category

  1. Dirt Cheap, Quality Easter Egg Dye

    April 17, 2011 by Jill

    Looking to save some money on Easter egg dye this year? Skip the commercial kits and buy a four pack of food coloring instead. Just add 10 drops of food coloring in a small bowl or mug, then add a few tablespoons¬† vinegar and a cup of water. If things seem a little too light, add in a few extra drops of food coloring. You’ll need to make more to dye the eggs whole, but I like to have them only go about half way over the eggs so I can give them stripes. You can change the intensity of the color by leaving them in the dye for longer or shorter amounts of time.


  2. 5 Hour Energy? Try B Vitamins Instead?

    April 11, 2011 by Jill

    There are a lot of people who don’t feel energized after drinking a 5 Hour energy, but many others, including myself find they really do feel great for the rest of the day. But with only the same amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee, the main thing that makes it actually work is B Vitamins. So, if you happen to be one of the people who feel energized after a 5 Hour energy, try taking a few B vitamin or multi-vitamin supplements. They’re a lot cheaper and just as effective.

    Image via veo_ [Flickr]


  3. Losing Weight? There’s An App For That

    March 20, 2011 by Jill

    Reviewed by Jill Harness on March 20, 2011.

    Everyone knows it’s hard to lose weight (if it weren’t, America wouldn’t have an obesity problem). The trick is to find what works for you. What works for me, and may benefit you as well, is the Calorie Counter app on my Windows phone. In fact, it’s working so well that I lost six pounds in my first week.

    The app was created by FatSecret and is available on all of the major smartphone operating systems, but if you don’t have a smartphone, you can always go ahead and use the FatSecret webpage instead.

    Essentially, all you have to do is track what you eat every day and how much you exercise. The system will be able to tell you how many calories, carbs, etc. you’re taking in and compare your calorie intake to the amount you should be consuming if you want to lose weight. If you slip up one day, it’s easy to stay motivated, because the diet calendar can still show you how many calories you have lost in an average day since you started using the program. There are a handful of foods and restaurants that aren’t on the list, but you can always look them up online and add them to the app where it will be available from there on out.

    And of course, the service is one of the Cheapskate’s favorite adjectives -free!

    I give the Calorie Counter app 4.5 out of 5.


  4. V House Pho & Grill -Pho Sho!

    December 8, 2010 by Jill

    Check your Penny Savers, because V House Pho & Grill constantly sends out buy two get one free coupons to everyone in East County. Of course, even at full price, this restaurant is worth every delicious penny.

    Their pho is rich and flavorful and you don’t miss out on the presentation when you opt to get your soup to go. The broth is packaged in a massive Styrofoam container, the noodles, onions and beef are in a take out box and your basil, jalapenos and bean sprouts are kept in another container. They even provide you with small cups of plum sauce and packets of soy sauce so you can further customize your soup flavor at home. If you do get the order to go, be sure to microwave your broth before adding the raw beef because the meat is supposed to cook in the soup and if you wait too long, you could be exposing yourself to unnecessary risk.

    Eating in the restaurant is also nice. The atmosphere is nice, clean and quiet and the service is immaculate. Aside from the pho, I highly recommend trying the crispy calamari (which isn’t always available), the beef vermicelli noodles and the Thai iced tea. In fact, I have yet to find anything that’s not great here.


  5. 10 Homemade Gift Ideas

    November 22, 2010 by Jill

    If you’re looking to get your family something special this year without spending a huge chunk of money, consider making them delicious food gifts. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

    • Martha Stewart’s website has a ton of great ideas on homemade food gifts. A few of my favorite selections are the caramel-almond popcorn and the brandied pears.
    • Just about everyone loves fudge an a cute tin filled with this great German chocolate fudge recipe will surely bring some smiles.
    • Canning is always a good call. You can make some unique jams your family can’t find in stores, like this guava jam recipe. Pumpkin butter is also a great gift. And so is lemon curd.
    • Pickling is also a good call, particularly if it involves foods directly from your garden. This pickled tomato recipe sounds great and doesn’t require processing in a canner.
    • While most Americans are wary of munching down citrus peels, a bit of these candied citrus peels will quickly change their mind, particularly if it is also filled with these beautiful candied orange slices.
    • For something beautiful and incredibly simple, try combining honey, dried fruit and nuts in a clear jar.
    • Food mixes allow you to give the recipient something they can make themselves without much effort. As a bonus, it’s easy to make these look fun and festive.
    • For those crafty enough, homemade stuffed animals are great gifts for kids and women alike.
    • Homemade perfume is a unique gift that won’t soon be forgotten.
    • A homemade fleece blanket can be customized to match the living room it was made to adorn or the personality of the gift recipient.

    Remember, you can always give a variety of these gifts as well and just put them together in a nice gift basket.


  6. Free Tacos At Jack In The Box Today

    August 11, 2009 by ruetheday

    Today, August 11 only, recieve two tacos for free at any participating Jack In The Box. Just bring in your coupon (get them here) and enjoy.


  7. Nationwide Freebies This Weekend

    July 10, 2009 by ruetheday

    Today is national cow appreciation day. To celebrate, put on your best cow costume and get a free combo meal at Chick-fill-a.

    As if that wasn’t good enough, tomorrow, 7/11, is national 7-Eleven day, where you can get free small Slurpees and your local franchise may even offer other special deals to celebrate.

    For more info: Visit their respective websites Chic-fil-a and 7-11

  8. Free Paint

    June 26, 2009 by ruetheday

    150_93454Looking to paint your bedroom, a piece of furniture…anything? You’re in luck. Glidden paint is giving away a free can of paint in any color you choose. It’s easy, just choose your color, answer some questions and you’ll have it in a few weeks.

    Go to their site to check it out.


  9. Free Birthday Meals In San Diego

    June 14, 2009 by ruetheday

    2552746558_939642c44fLet’s face it, your family doesn’t want to spend all kinds of money taking you out to dinner on your birthday. They want to go somewhere and eat some good food and they already bought you presents, but why make them pay an additional $10-$20? And after the family and friends dinners, wouldn’t you be happy to have a few free meals to go? Here’s a few places in San Diego that offer free food for birthday diners:

    The day of:

    -Onami: This is a great, all you can eat sushi and Japanese food restaurant, meaning it is a little pricey usually. On the bright side, if you eat there on your actual birthday, you get a coupon to come back again for free.

    -Ihop: While participation varies by location, many Ihop’s will give you a free meal just for coming in on your birthday. Call ahead for details.

    -Disneyland: So it’s not in San Diego and it’s not a restaurant, but you can save yourself a $70 admission fee for visiting on your birthday. It’s a great deal that can leave you with fantastic memories. Also note, the registration is not mandatory, it merely makes admission faster.

    On a set day of the month:

    -The Boathouse: This upscale restaurant selects one day of the month to offer a free prime rib meal with the purchase of another meal for all people born on a particular month.

    Emails for near-birthday coupons:

    -Rubios: When you sign up for their Beach Club, you get a free taco automatically. When your birthday rolls around, they give you a free meal worth up to $7. No other purchase is necessary.

    -Mimi’s Cafe: Sign up for Mimi’s eclub and you’ll receive a coupon for a free breakfast worth up to $10. For your birthday, they’ll send you a coupon for $10 off you next meal over $20.

    -Black Angus: If you want a steak for your birthday, sign up for their Prime Club and receive a buy one get one free meal coupon for your birthday.  Your meal can be worth up to $19.99.

    -Red Robin: Get a free birthday burger when you register at their website…best of all, there’s no other purchase necessary.

    -HomeTown Buffet: When you sign up here, you can get one free buffet dinner when you purchase another buffet dinner. You’ll recieve another coupon like this for your birthday.

    -Coldstone: Get a free like-it size ice cream for your birthday when you register at their site.

    Know any other freebies? Let me know in the comments!

    Photo Via Aloha Orangeneko [Flickr]


  10. 6 Ways To Save By Cleaning

    March 23, 2009 by ruetheday

    Over on my Cheap Eats site I write for the Examiner, I just posted 6 ways you can save by doing your spring cleaning this year. Check it out.