Logo: Cargo Largo

Cargo Largo is Ghetto Sara Lee approved

The #1 reason I love Cargo Largo is that it enables me to live the lifestyle I choose within my budget.

For those of you who don’t know, Cargo Largo is a resale store located in Independence, Missouri off of 35th and Noland Road. They sell food, household items, baby items, toys, clothes, hardware, and furniture. Some of their items are nearing expiration, or they were not deemed fit for store shelves, but they are perfectly fine to consume. The most important thing to know about Cargo Largo is you can save a lot of money there.

My love affair with Cargo Largo began a little over a year ago when I made a decision to eliminate as many processed, fake foods and products from my life. I’m sure you know that can be very expensive. Cargo Largo always has tons of organic, gluten free, natural, non-GMO foods for the low, low so I can stock up for the whole month without my heart dropping into my stomach at the cash register.

I also made a commitment to cut out unnecessary expenses. One of those expenses included coffee. I habitually stopped at 7/11 every single day to get a cup of coffee ($1.79 with tax). After a month of coffee, I was spending calm near $60 a month on coffee. I have been lucky enough to score coffee for $3 a bag there for a few months and saved a ton of money as a result. Finding coffee at Cargo Largo weaned me off of buying coffee every day and now I have been making coffee at home.

 

My Successful Hauls at Cargo Largo

   My first haul, February 2016

Highlights:

  • Terra Sweet Potato Chips
  • Hodson Mill Penne Pasta @ $1.30 each
  • Simply Asia seasoning packets, $0.80 each
  • Basil and Sage, $1 each
  • Annie’s Bunny Snacks, $0.90 each
  • Sea Salt Popcorn, $0.75 each
  • The Toasted Oat No. 1 Peanut + Raisin, $2.70 each
  • Sejoyia Chili Pumpkin Seed Brussel Bytes
  • Fiber D-lish bars, $2.50 for a 12-pack
  • “Irish” I had me a beer socks, $0.25
  • Black Carnival Wheel cupcake holder, $6.99
 Total: $39.89
  April 2016

  • 2 packages of Three Sisters Frosted Wheat @ $1.20
  • 2 packages of Three Sisters Cinnamon Sweets @ $1.20
  • 4 bags of Kicking Horse Kick Ass blend coffee @ $5
  • 4 bags of Boom Chick-a-Pop Popcorn @ $0.75 each
  • 3 Silk shelf-stable soy milk @ $1 each
  • 2 boxes Enjoy Life Crunchy Flax with Chia @ $1.20 each
  • 2 packages of Purely Elizabeth Mango Almond Muesli @ $1.95 each
  • 2 packages of 2 packages of Purely Elizabeth Apple Current Muesli @ $1.95 each
  • Sejoyia Brussel Bytes Tamarind Apple Crunch, $1.20 each
  • Forever 21 dress, $11.98 (see below)
Total: $65.38
  May 2016

  • 3 bags of Kicking Horse Kick Ass blend coffee @ $3 (sold for $8.49 on amazon.com)
  • 6 snack size San Franola Granola @ $0.50 a piece
  • 4 tubs of Brad’s Kale @ $0.50 a piece
  • 2 packages of Among Friends Brownie mix @ $1.70
  • 2 packages of Udis Vanilla Almond Granola @ $1.70
  • 2 packages of Three Sisters Frosted Wheat @ $1.20
  • 2 packages of Purely Elizabeth Mango Almond Muesli @ $2 each
  • 3 boxes of Purely Elizabeth Granola and Puffs Cereal, different varieties @ $2
  • Breakfast Poppers Blueberries, Almond and Buckwheat @ $1.50
  • 2 boxes of Quinn Popcorn Vermont Maple and Sea Salt @ $1.50 each
  • 4 cartons Orgain Organic Almond Milk 32 oz @ 1.25 each
Total: $50

 

  May 2016

Highlights:

  • Freekeh Foods Tamari Freekeh @ $1.35 each
  • Enjoy Life Seeds & Fruit, $0.90 each
  • Lundberg Organic Sprouted Risotto Cheddar & Peppers 5.5 Oz @ $1 each
  • Rhythm Superfoods Broccoli Bites, various @ $1.00 each
  • 6 cartons Orgain Organic Almond Milk 32 oz @ 1.25 each
  • Among Friends Brownie Mix, $1.70
  • Udi’s Natural Granola,
  • 5 bags of Kicking Horse Kick Ass blend coffee @ $3
  • 4 tubs of Brad’s Kale @ $0.50 each

 

 Total: $53.05

(includes items not pictured here)

  June 2016

Highlights:

  • 1 bag Sally’s Cereals Cocoa Sweets @ $1.60 a bag
  • 1 box Safari Cocoa Crunch® | Mom’s Best Cereals @ $1.20 (normally around $5, cheapest I’ve seen in a regular store was $2.50)
  • 2 bags of Three Sisters Cinnamon Sweets @ $1.20
  • 4 bags of Kicking Horse Kick Ass blend coffee @ $3
  • Annie’s Cowgirl Ranch @ $2.20 each
  • Shelf-stable Silk Almond Milk, $1.50
  • Wild Garden Hummus @ $1.50
  • Natural Laundry Soap, $2.50

 

 Total: $75.35

(includes items not pictured here)

  July 2016

Highlights:

  • 3 bags Sally’s Cereals Cocoa Sweets @ $1.60 a bag
  • 3 boxes Safari Cocoa Crunch® | Mom’s Best Cereals @ $1.20
  • 2 packages of Three Sisters Frosted Wheat @ $1.20
  • 2 packages of Three Sisters Cinnamon Sweets @ $1.20
  • 4 x oz packages of pita chips for $0.75 a piece
  • Jalapeno Hummus dip @ $ each
  • 2 bags of Kicking Horse Kick Ass blend coffee @ $3
  • 1 bag of Kicking Horse Grizzly Claw blend coffee @ $5 (sold for $8.49 on amazon.com)
  • Bobby Sue’s Nuts It’s Raining Chocolate – 8oz Jar @ $2 (normally sold for $12)
  • Reginald’s Homemade  Bourbon Pecan Peanut Butter $3 (normally sold for $7)
  • Toasted Oat Granola No.4 – Cashew+Apricot (normally sold for $8.95
  • Del Oro Tostadas $2

 

Total: $44.20

 

  September 2016

Highlights:

  • 5 bags Sally’s Cereals Cocoa Sweets @ $1.60 a bag
  • 2 boxes of Banza pasta at $2.50 each
  • Spicely spices @ $1.40 each
  • Naan Chips @ $2.50
  • Annie’s Cowgirl Ranch @ $1.50 each
  • 4 Streit’s Kosher baking mixes for $1.70/1.80 each
  • 2 boxes Hodgson Mills Pancake and Waffle Mix at @ 1.25 each
  • Nacho Cheese $1.80 (normally at least $2.49 at the grocery store)
  • Madhava Organic Maple Pancake Syrup $3
  • Kettle Chips $0.75 each
  • Que Pasa Organic Salsa $1.60
  • Wild Garden Hummus $2 each
  • Jackson’s Honest Organic Blue Corn Chips $0.75 each
  • Ecos Dishwashing Liquid $2
 Total: $44.60
   November 2016

Highlights:

  • Stevia Sparkling Fruit Juice, $2 each
  • Hemp Milk, $1.30
  • Nature’s Path Organic Pumpkin Flax Puffs, $3 each
  • Inkos bottled tea, $1 each
  • Ecos dish washing liquid, $2
  • Shea Moisture conditioner, $7.50
  • 2 Target Mossimo Cardigans, $5.99 each
 Total: $53.49
   March 2017

Highlights:

  • 3 boxes Nature’s Path Organic Poptarts, $2.50 each
  • Marley Mellow Mood tea, $0.70 each
  • Nacho Mom’s World Famous Vegan Queso, $2.50
  • Southern Gourmet pie mixes, $1.80 each
  • Que Pasa Organic Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips, $1.50
  • Argo Hibiscus Tea, $1 each
  • Prima Singapore Curry, $3.70
  • Hugo natural shampoo and conditioner, $4.90 and $4.80
  • Hugo natural lavender lotion, $4.70
  • Eco Me Floor Cleaner, $3
  • Ecos dish washing liquid, $2
 Total: $58.85
   April 2017

Highlights:

  • Ecos dish washing liquid, $2
  • Hodgson’s Mill Chickpeas, $2
  • Gluten Free Spice Cake Mix, $3.30
  • Flowered skirt, $5.99
  • Swim bottoms, $5.99
  • Lane Bryant Leggings $7.99
  • Annie’s Macaroni and Cheese, various $0.90 each
  • Marley Mellow Mood tea, $0.70 each
  • Graduation greeting cards, $0.50 each
 Total: $53.75

There is no feeling like being straight on coffee, breakfast and snacks for the month! Even the cashier at my latest haul said she couldn’t believe I got all I bought for less than $50.

Not Just Food

I always find a ton of natural beauty items, cool clothes, and household items at Cargo Largo for the low. One time, I found a carousel cupcake holder for $6. I went back and got another one to match. Back in August, I scored my dog beds (which are zippered and washable) for $25 a piece there, too.

I have found:

  • camisole tanks for $1 and $2,
  • Target cardigans for $5 each,
  • a Croft & Barrow boatneck printed shirt for $6
  • a really pretty Forever 21 dress for $12
  • an Old Navy boatneck knit sweater for $7.98
  • a 2 quart saucepan for $6

The lesson for today is Cargo Largo is a great choice for pantry items, clothing, and household goods.  Check em out today!

If you don’t believe me, they were recently featured on Fox 4 KC: http://fox4kc.com/2016/05/23/inside-independences-well-kept-secret-cargo-largo/

Disclaimer: Since Cargo Largo is a resale store, they do not stock items regularly. So if you find an item you really like there, I advise you to buy many of them!

Logo: CVS Pharmacy

10 Reasons I Love CVS

I’m sure by now you can tell that I have a deep affinity for CVS. To help you understand why I am so enthusiastic about CVS, I have put together this list of reasons why it is my go-to spot for health and a lot of my personal shopping!

  1. Extra Rewards Bucks
    Who doesn’t love free money? You can earn extra rewards bucks, which are essentially dollars that you can then turn around and spend there on your next purchase. CVS pays out Extra Rewards bucks quarterly based on your spending and with purchases of special items. You’re going to spend the money anyway. Why not spend it all in one place and earn money back?
  2. Extra Rewards Coupons
    You have seen the bright red machine when you walk into CVS. This machine spits out coupons that are current promotions and also deals that you can choose to have sent to your card at cvs.com. I highly recommend checking the CVS app or the Extra Rewards section of cvs.com when you are planning your health/hygiene purchase for the month to see if there are any coupons on products you are planning to buy.
  3. Shopping at CVS Can Save You a Lot of Money.
    If you plan your purchases accordingly, using sales and manufacturer’s coupons, in combination with Extra Rewards coupons, you can see your total on the register go down 50… 75%… I’ve even seen people walk out with FREE stuff. 
  4. CVS App
    The CVS app allows you to accomplish a lot of helpful tasks all in one place:

    • pull up your card (I know I lost mines a long time ago),
    • view the status of your prescriptions and order refills,
    • scan a product in the store
    • view the weekly ad and your available
    • and a million more things…
  5. CVS Pharmacy helps you manage your health.
    I don’t really like to take medicine, but when I must, CVS is my preferred pharmacy. They have convenient features like:

    • auto refills (they even contacted my doctor when my birth control ran out)
    • ordering refills from wherever you are at any time.
    • access to your (and your family’s) complete, detailed prescription history you can pull up anywhere (like in the doctor’s office or the ER)
    • notifications when your prescription is ready so you don’t have to waste time waiting
    • you can even refill your prescriptions online for home delivery.
  6. CVS is Everywhere.
    You can always find a CVS when you need one, no matter where you are and there’s always a 24-hour CVS within driving distance. And now, CVS Pharmacy is at Target! Read more: https://www.cvs.com/help/target_help_index.jsp?WT.ac=CVS-M-TGT-RX-V1-42020-357X24-PZ
  7. Coin Star
    When I need to cash in my change, I know where I can find a Coin Star machine to turn my coins into dollars!
  8. CVS cares about community inclusion.
    CVS has a strong commitment to hiring people with disabilities. Inclusion and opportunities for people with disabilities is something I value, so I choose to spend my money there.
  9. SNACKS!
    I don’t know if you’ve ever wandered down the snack aisles of CVS… but they have the best selection of scooby snacks in the world. They have many healthy choices for snacks too, not just the standard junk food.
  10. They sell liquor.
    I don’t think anything else needs to be said here.

 

If you aren’t enrolled in CVS Extra Care Rewards, visit them online and sign up today!

 

Photo: from left: Plastic bottle of Hy-vee brand ground ginger, American Fare ground black pepper, and a bottle of ground turmeric next to a saucepan with turmeric milk in it on the stove.

How to Beat a Cold without Spending a ton of Money on Medicine

Two words: Turmeric Milk.

Last week, I came down with a cold. One of my friends suggested I try turmeric as a means to beat my illness.  They sent me a link to Fresh Bites Daily’s recipe for Turmeric Milk.

From Fresh Bites Daily

Turmeric Milk Ingredients

2 cups of milk (or substitute coconut milk)
1 teaspoon dried turmeric (or one-half inch fresh turmeric thinly sliced or diced)
1 teaspoon dried ginger (or one-half inch fresh ginger thinly sliced or diced)
A sprinkle of black pepper
Honey to taste

Turmeric Milk Steps

  1. Place milk in a saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Add turmeric, ginger, and pepper. Stir well if you are using the dried spices.
  3. Let the milk begin to simmer — small bubbles will form on the sides of the saucepan. Stir.
  4. Allow to heat for another minute or two being careful not to let the milk overheat. Continue to stir at this point to get better heat distribution.
  5. Turn off heat, cover, and allow the mixture to sit for ten minutes or so to improve the infusion.
  6. Strain the milk through a strainer if you have used fresh ingredients.
  7. Serve warm.

I used coconut milk with my concoction. Within an hour of drinking it, all the congestion started coming out of my body.  Within a couple of days, I was feeling a million times better.

I have used both grated, fresh ginger and ground ginger for my milk. The benefit to using ground ginger is you don’t have to strain the milk. The benefit to using fresh ginger is obviously the benefits that come with ginger in general. The honey is not necessary, but I recently started adding it and it makes it taste a lot better.

The numbers

Coconut milk: $2.88-$2.99 at HyVee
Dried turmeric $1 at Big Lots (I already had it on hand, so it didn’t actually cost me anything)
Dried ginger $1 at Big Lots or Dollar Tree or Fresh Ginger, less than $1 at the Trader Joe’s  (I already had it on hand, so it didn’t actually cost me anything)
A sprinkle of black pepper (You should have this in your kitchen)

Total cost $5

 

Stick with me and I'll put you up on all kinds of game

Related topics coming soon:

  • Aligning your values with your spending
  • Strategies to save money grocery shopping

Photo: package of Arm & Hammer plus OxiClean pods (21 ct) on sale at CVS for $1.99

Laundry soap for $1.99 at CVS

Tell me how I just got 60 pods for the price of 20 at CVS?! (I bought 3 packages at $1.99 for a grand total of $5.97)

I was getting ready to take my clothes and bedding to the laundromat and low and behold, all Arm & Hammer laundry soap is on sale at CVS.

Now I’m mad I didn’t buy all of them off the shelf.

This lady walkin through CVS was clearly hunting deals so I told her about it and she said, “There’ll be a coupon for those in the paper tomorrow.” To which I replied, “If you get the Examiner on Saturdays you get the coupons early.”

I love saving money, and I love CVS, so tonight was definitely a win-win. The only pitfall was laundromat man wasn’t at work tonite 😂

Photo: old lady supplies from CVS

Saving $$$ at CVS

First of all, let me say: none of the pictured items were for me!

The other day, I had to go buy a bunch of supplies for my grandma, who just got home after a long stint in the hospital and rehab.

I do most of my personal shopping at CVS. I have consistently saved 40% on my last two large shopping trips.

Here is my strategy:

  1. I always take a list.
  2. I always try to look for manufacturer’s coupons for what I know I will buy.
  3. I couple my coupons with CVS Extra Rewards coupons and Extra bucks.

Photo: old lady supplies from CVS

When the cashier hit TOTAL on my purchase, it was over $60! I started freaking out, but then she applied my coupons and CVS Extra Rewards:

  • Manufacturer’s Coupon – 25 cents off Palmolive
  • Manufacturer’s Coupon – $2 off Poise Pads
  • Manufacturer’s Coupon – $3 off Depends
  • CVS Extra Rewards coupon: $6 off $30
  • CVS Extra Rewards $5
  • BOGO CVS vitamins made her multivitamins FREE (total value $7.99)

 

So, I was able to get her things for $35.

I love CVS.  Even though their prices may be higher on some things, if you use your brain, you can end up saving money.  CVS rewards you based on how much you spend, so if you are faithful to them, you will rack up rewards.  I know I’m looking forward to my birthday, when they will throw me some money!  To read up on how ExtraCare Rewards work, check out this blog post: http://www.pennypinchinmom.com/cvs101-general-faqs-2/

Free laundry detergent at CVS

No, CVS is not giving away free soap.. but I can show you how I hustled up my monthly soap supply for free!

I always love coming to the laundromat!

Today I’m ecstatic for two reasons:
1) Laundromat man is here so I have someone to bat my eyes at while I’m washing 😜
2) I just saved 69% off my purchase at CVS and got my laundry detergent free.

Here’s how:

I had $5 extra rewards from when I purchased my makeup last week. CVS had a 14CT pack of Tide Pods on sale for $4.99.

My total purchase amount was $3.85.  I used a 25% off coupon I had gotten in the mail and I also purchased a 24 ct bottle of CVS brand acetaminophen (used a $1.50 off coupon) and a big ass bag of CVS brand funyuns.

The only thing I would have done differently was I would have used the 25% off coupon last week when I spent $30 on my hygiene supplies (but I was rushing and I forgot- an important lesson in planning your shopping trip).

If you’re not signed up for extra care rewards with CVS, you need to visit their website now! I always end up getting deals when I shop there.

Another word of advice: don’t get so farklempt by the laundromat man that you forgot to start one of your loads of clothes!

Until next time…. Ya girl

image

Ghetto Sara Lee

CVS personal/hygiene spending for August - savings with my ExtraCare Rewards

OMG Savings at CVS!

I am not what you would call a loyal shopper by any means, but I do believe brand loyalty pays off. That’s why I stick with certain stores for certain things.

A girl’s gotta stay clean! When it comes to personal supplies like shampoo, conditioner, and body wash, I go to CVS because your spending adds up quarterly and they constantly reward you for shopping there with coupons and additional coupons and offer chances to earn more rewards. One thing I like about CVS is if you can’t print your coupons, you can send rewards they send you to your card and print them in the store (yeah, I have a printer but it’s all out of ink :P)

When I first got paid, I stopped in to CVS to get some cash back and bought some L’Oreal True Match Mineral Powder (Nudge Beige) and a three-pack of gum. When I bought the face powder, I noticed an offer for $5.00 ExtraBucks when you spent $15 on L’Oreal products. I am loyal to this product. I won’t pay more than $10 for it– so I shop around from store to store to see who has the best deal on this. I knew I would get that $5 ExtraBucks that I could use when I was ready for my monthly supply run.

I paid $7.67. I saved 61% or $11.33.

The receipt breakdown is as follows:

CVS personal/hygiene spending for August - savings with my ExtraCare RewardsHerbal Essences Moroccan My Shine Conditioner (on sale for 2/$6)
Herbal Essences Naked Shine Shampoo (on sale for 25% off)
Caress Daily Silk Body Wash ($2 off with CVS coupon)
CVS Tampons (regular) 18 pack (20% off with CVS coupon)

I also got my birth control prescription (FREE… thanks Obamacare! &yes, you do just walk into CVS and hand them the prescription at first, then you can auto-refill it and pick it up and you don’t pay.. if your coverage works like that.)

My total savings this year with CVS ExtraRewards is $51.20. If you sign up or participate in ExtraRewards, make sure you are also signed up for the Beauty Club as well, which just adds to your rewards.

I’m a fairly simple girl. I know that these few items and some face powder isn’t necessarily what most people buy. The point is, I went in with a list, a little bit of preparation, and an idea of how much I could save if I combined all of the various offers. Next time we revisit CVS ExtraRewards, we will hear from one of my girls who puts way more effort into looking fabulous than me 🙂

Herbal Essences Shampoo & Conditioner and Oil of Olay body wash

How I saved almost half off at CVS

CVS ReceiptI spent a total of $9.75 at CVS the other day for my essential personal hygiene supplies for the month.

Herbal Essences Tealightfully Clean Shampoo (10 oz) [On sale for 2/$6 from $4.39 each + MFR coupon $1 off when you buy 2] Herbal Essences Tealightfully Clean Shampoo (10 oz) [On sale for 2/$6 from $4.39 each + MFR coupon $1 off when you buy 2] Oil of Olay Luscious Orchid Body Wash (23.6 oz) [On sale for $6 from $7.29 + MFR coupon $1 off]

At CVS, your spending each quarter accumulates, and after you reach certain amounts, they reward you with Extra Bucks. I’ve seen a few extra bucks through my spending, but also receive them occasionally in my email.  On this particular day, I had $1 in Extra Bucks so I decided to go to CVS.  

I am not brand-loyal at all but I do have preferences. My strategy this time was cutting out a variety of shampoo/conditioner and body wash coupons so I could have them ready when I went to purchase these items. You can go the extra mile and watch for sales if you want to, but most stores usually have something on sale.  CVS had Herbal Essences on sale 2/$6.  I had a coupon for $1/shampoo and conditioner.  This means I got my shampoo and conditioner for even less than I would’ve paid at Wal-mart.

Including the Extra Buck I printed out before I headed to CVS, my total was 9.00, $7.07 less than it would’ve been without any coupons, sales, or rewards bucks applied.

I felt pretty good after I left CVS.  I basically paid Walmart prices at CVS in midtown, which tends to have higher prices, without spending all the gas to drive to the burbs for my essentials.