Mea Culpa

Me, Crystal Collins from The Thrifty Mama and Robert Knepper (AKA T-Bag from Prison Break and a bunch of other shows. He was SO nice! I think it speaks volumes for a mans acting ability that he can play such scumbucket roles and be a sweetheart!)

I know that you people are waiting on the grocery and Rite Aid posts this week, and I am SO sorry that they have yet to be posted.

If you have friended me (don’t do this unless you like a WHOLE lot of talk about Chardonnay and non-prissy thangs) or Like Me on Facebook, you know that I was in Chicago from Thursday morning until Sunday night with  I got home in the late afternoon on Sunday and then had to be downtown Philly first thing Monday morning to get ready and rehearse a live segment on CBS Philly.

The best part?  I got some clarity while I was in Chicago and realized that I have been traveling too much.  I get invited to a bunch of events and believe me, they are fun.  But I decided this past weekend that “Fun is nice, but unless the trip adds true value to my site, I’m not doing them any longer“.

Oh – except you see that picture above and the picture below?  I DO get to meet some amazing people!

So I am trying to catch up….please bear with me.  On the off chance that I don’t get all stores done this week, please know that they will be on-time going forward.


Ukee Washington is quite possibly one of the nicest people you will ever meet!

Welcome CBS 3 Viewers!

Thank you for stopping by!

What you saw in my interview with Ukee Washington today is real: you really can get free shampoo, toothpaste, razors and more, and I am happy to teach you how to do it!  I can also help you to cut your grocery budget, find links to hot deals and keep your mailbox full of freebies….all at no charge to you (and with no registration required).

It is here you will find out how to get free toiletries at CVS, Walgreens and Rite Aid and super-cheap groceries at the Philadelphia-area grocery stores as as well as many others

I do update this site anywhere from 4-15 times per day (depending on what deals are out there).  If you prefer to receive my updates via RSS Feed or email, simply use the Subscribe buttons in the right-hand column.

If you are new to using coupons, I recommend that you check out the links on this page.  These include many posts from my Coupon 101 series, my Feeding a Family on $50 Per Week Series and others.

If you want to take advantage of the freebies that I post, I strongly suggest that you read my Getting Freebies The Smart Way post before you start signing up for anything!

One thing that I am passionate about is using coupons in a completely ethical manner.  Please check out my Coupon Ethics series when you get a chance!

There are plenty of Printable Coupons to be found on this page.  Most Philadelphia-area supermarkets do accept Internet Printables  and they are a great resource.

Once again, welcome to Moms Need To Know and thank you for stopping by.  Please feel free to ask any questions that you may have!

I’ve Been So Busy Since Thursday That This Video Was Supposed To Go Up Last Night and I Am Just Now Getting It Posted

Oh Hai!

If you have wondered where I have been while I was seriously neglecting this site, the answer is:  I was in New York City at BlogHer.

BlogHer is THE blogging conference for women.  It is where you learn to hone your skills, network with other bloggers as well as other PR reps (who are the reason that I continue to be able to bring you fantabulous giveaways).

I had every intention of keeping up with a reasonable posting schedule.  However,  once I got to New York and saw all of the things that I would miss doing, it hit me….in the 2 years that I have made this site my full-time job, I have had very few days off.  I took off when I threw my back out this past Memorial Day (believe me, you didn’t want me doing coupon matchups while I was on valium), when Brad’s grandmother died and we had to go for the funeral, and maybe 2-5 other days in 2 years.  I needed a “real break”…one that didn’t include death or narcotics.

Don’t get me wrong.  I love this site and all that I know that it does….I just needed a break.  In the past 4 days I have met and talked to and taken pictures with Jennie Garth (and I SO wanted to tell her that she totally should have gone for Brandon instead of Dylan), Chef Scott Liebfried (my future 2nd husband, as soon as we break the news to his wife an Brad) and Gavin DeGraw. I’ve been in heaven!

But I am back home now and it’s time to catch up.  Please bear with me while I do so!

In the meantime – here’s a few pictures for you!

P.S.: I love to Brad to pieces, but do you want to know what the absolute LAST thing I wanted to hear when I walked in the door was?  It was “Hey!  We’ve been out of toilet paper for the last day and a half!”.  They’ve been using all the free Kleenex that we got!

P.P.S: If you ever REALLY want to keep up with what I am doing, I always invite my readers to Friend me on Facebook.

P.P.P.S:  although I too tend to talk about Pinot Grigio and Chardonnay on Facebook

P.P.P.P.S.:  and Bud Light Lime

P.P.P.P.P.S.:  and I get especially snarky on Facebook.   If you have some delusion that I am anything other than a completely flawed and real mom, please don’t friend me!

A Message from Jared of Subway (and me)

Of course, this is the boring version of the video (although the kid throwing the baseball cap in the background? That’s my Thomas!). The fun version is below.

Bottom line? I am in Los Angeles and returning LATE Saturday night. Oh – and hey! Have you ever travelled with 2 first-time (very chatty) flyers under the age of 10? I really don’t recommend it!

I’ll catch up on posts in the next 48 hours….and then I PROMISE that I am not going out of town for the next 2 weeks! In the meantime, turn your head sideways an enjoy! (and if anyone knows a way to edit videos taken on the Droid, especially rotating them, that would be GREAT!)

Hampton Inn: Win a FREE Weekend Stay!


This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Hampton Hotels. All opinions are 100% mine.

Who doesn’t like a weekend getaway…especially when it includes a free hotel stay?  That’s what you could win if you enter the Hampton Chain of Friends Sweepstakes.

Through September 4, 2010, Hampton Inn is giving away a 100 FREE weekend stays for 1 person and 3 of their friends (1 prize per day) and a grand prize of an entire hotel (100 rooms for the weekend) for one lucky winner!

Just last night, I was talking to 2 friends (who have boys the same age as my boys) and how much fun it would be if we took them all to Colonial Williamsburg.  The boys studied the Founding Fathers quite a bit last year and I know that they would have so much more fun (and learn more) if they could experience it with their friends!  And of course, living just a short drive or train ride from New York City brings to mind a nice relaxing weekend taking in the restaurants and shows with another couple (with my children having a sleepover with Granny).

You can enter to win both the daily giveaway and the grand prize on the Hampton Chain of Friends Sweepstakes page.

Sweepstakes open to residents of the US, DC, Canada (excluding Quebec), UK and Mexico from 12:000 am CT on 6/1/10 to 11:59pm CT on 9/4/10.

So if you win….where are you going?

Visit my sponsor: Win a free Weekend Stay

Click Here

Hey – I’m on Vacation!

I’m trying to keep up with posts, but considering it is Friday night and I haven’t even started the Acme or Genuardi’s posts, it is obvious that I am failing miserably.

Bottom line – this site takes 10 hours of my day each day and I am at my once-a-year family reunion (and have been here since Wednesday) at my father’s shore house.  I need a break!

Brad arrived this evening after work, which means that I should be able to get some work done tomorrow.  But the truth?  It’s 4th of July weekend (which means that very few of you are reading anyway), I am having an absolute BALL with my family and I need some “down time”.

I will absolutely get the drug stores up tomorrow as well as Giant on Sunday.  I will also work on Acme and Genurdi’s.  Until then, please bear with me while I do some cuddling with my children on the beach!

Using Coupons Makes You Buy Things You Don’t Need! (Couponing Myth #1)

I recently had this discussion with two  friends of mine and it was fun to see someone have a “light bulb moment”, not from me, but from another friend that I had converted to the “couponing dark side” about 2 years ago.

We were outside with the kids playing when one friend asked me about the $5 Scrubbing Bubbles coupon and if she could find it online.  I told her that it couldn’t, but that I had a bunch of them and she was welcome to them (I’m a Soft Scrub gal).

So then a discussion ensued…..if ever there was a case study of “What Makes People Start To Use Coupons”, this would be it.

You see – my one friend was quick to tell me that she was only going to buy a bunch of Extend-A-Clean because it was such a good coupon.  But she didn’t want to get “nuts” with buying things with coupons because “they just make you buy things you don’t need…who needs 20 bottles of shampoo in 1 week?”

And then my other friend turned to her and said “Mindi taught me to never pay for shampoo, conditioner or toothpaste again,  I didn’t NEED 20 tubes of toothpaste 9 months ago, but I didn’t pay anything for it and I haven’t had to pay $3 every other week for 9 months for toothpaste!  I am just now starting to run low on all the free Pantene that I had.  We didn’t NEED that much toothpaste the weeks that I bought it, but we needed it eventually, and what’s more, I didn’t have to worry about buying it for a long time because I knew that I had enough.”

(funny story:  I still remember HER “light bulb moment”….her son dropped his toothbrush in the toilet one morning and it was 7:00pm and she still hadn’t managed to go out and buy him a new one.  I told her don’t bother, I had plenty of toothbrushes that she was welcome to have for free, because I didn’t pay anything for them either!)

And that’s the thing…couponing is all about “Long-term thinking”. This week there may be a great deal on one item that can enable you to stock up for free or at rock-bottom prices.  The next week there will be something else.

Do you need 10 bottles of Nivea Body Wash because it is on a great sale at Walgreens this week and you can get it free?  Well – quite frankly, if you go through 10 bottles of Body Wash in 1 week, you have more serious problems than saving money!  But the point is, you WILL eventually go through 10 bottles of body wash.

So why not stockpile it when you can get it free?  Wouldn’t you rather have to find space for free product than pay $5 for it every 2 weeks when you need it?

How have you dealt with people that think that you are just “buying things you don’t need”?

Housekeeping: Navigation, Giveaways and More!

So for the first time in about 3 months, I appear to be semi-caught up on my postings.

So it’s time to take care of a little business….

Navigation: I haven’t mentioned this because I was working out the tweaks, but you can now find any category that you are looking for through my new handy-dandy drop-down menus at the top of your screen.  No more scrolling through the sidebar to find the category drop down menu…now it’s all at the top.  I am working to continually improve the navigation on this site, but it is my hope that this change will make it easier to find what you need faster.

Coupon Database:  when I do my coupon matchups each week, I try to only include those deals that I think are good ones.  However, I realize that sometimes you need what you need when you need it.  Don’t forget about my Coupon Database to find coupons for those items for which you may need, but I haven’t listed a deal for at the stores!

Giveaways:  In the run-up to the Dads Rock Giveaway Bash (which is nothing short of awesomeness), I have received a few emails expressing concern about the way the giveaways will be conducted.  I understand the hesitance to enter giveaways at untrusted sites.  That is why I wrote my “Getting Freebies The Smart Way” post.  However, please be assured that any email address on entries in a giveaway (or any other comment) on Moms Need To Know will only be seen by me.  I have absolutely NO interest in selling or sharing your email addressThe only information that is EVER shared by me is the info of the winner of the giveaway to the person shipping the giveaway item!

Sorry for the “boring post”, but considering what is to come, I wanted to highlight a few features.

Beyond that, what can I do to make Moms Need To Know a better experience for you?

OK – NOW I’m back to work!

I had high hopes for getting a ton of work done yesterday.  The idea that I could finally sit upright was very encouraging.

However, I didn’t take in to account how loopy all those drugs would make me! I think I was even more loopy from when I gave birth (I had 3 c-sections, so they load you up with painkillers!) and just could NOT concentrate.

I woke up this morning feeling so much better that I think I don’t need the Percocet any longer.  With one less drug in my system, I should be able to get stuff done.  And, since I still am not allowed to drive…I have nothing to do today but work!

Thanks for sticking with me through this!

I THINK I’m back to work!

First of all – THANK YOU for all of your wonderful supportive comments yesterday! When you have a website/blog that depends on very “time sensitive information”, you are concerned that your readers will be upset when you take time off for ANY reason.  Thanks for letting me know that I am not just a source of info to you…that you are also concerned about ME.

It’s 6:20am and I just woke up and for the first time in 2 days, I was able to actually get out of bed in under 20 minutes (it only took 5 minutes) and was able to walk.

Even better, I am able to sit upright without major pain, which means that I can work at the computer!  Woohoo! (of course, the fact that I am on Valium, Percocet AND prescription-strength Motrin may have something to do with it)

As long as I continue to be ok, expect a MASSIVE flurry of posts today!  I’m going to catch up on a few freebies and coupons that were released in the last 2 days, then get straight to work on Genuardi’s (always my easiest grocery post to do), then Acme, then the rest of the regularly scheduled weekend posts.

Oh – and for my local readers:  if you ever need to go to the ER, Paoli hospital is wonderful! I delivered Elizabeth there and knew that the maternity ward was first-rate….but after using a few other local ERs for various accidents for my children, I will never take them anywhere but Paoli again!

Next Time, I’m Writing About My Lack of $1,000,000!

So remember when, just 10 short days ago, I wrote about how I thought my daughter was going to end up at her Senior Prom in diapers?

That was April 15th, a Thursday.  The next afternoon, something just “clicked” in my daughter’s head and she decided that she wanted to try using the toilet.

Ten days later, she has had exactly ONE accident, knows when it is time to go and heads to the bathroom herself.  The only help she needs from me is wiping.

It’s a good thing…because I can’t imagine girls in diapers get many invites to the prom (at least, not by people without some SERIOUS problems).

I have been buying diapers every week since May, 2001.  I can’t believe that my diaper-buying days are finally over!

Is it wrong that I am torn between being ecstatic and wondering why she didn’t do this before????