Earn money while shopping online!

Ebates Coupons and Cash Back – ebates! ILOVE EBATES. You get cash back at any of 1,700 stores any time you start your shopping trip at Ebates.com. There are no points to redeem, no forms to mail in, and no fees.

Plus you get a $10 gift card after you make your first $25 purchase through ebates.

Like shopping at Target? You get 2.5% cash back. Kohl’s you get 3% back. Do you ever buy a deal through Groupon or Living Social? You get 6% back on both of those sites if you go through Ebates.  Amazon, rental cars, Orbitz, Walmart, Carters, The Children’s Place… you name it! It’s super easy to use. Once you create your ebates account, any time you shop online, first go to ebates. Select the store you want to shop and it creates a tracking ticket and sends you to the store’s website. After you make a purchase, you will receive an email from ebates telling you how much cash back you’ll receive! Yay!

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Helpful Tip Tuesday: Portion Control

Several people have asked me about the leftovers night and how we can possibly have enough food leftover for another meal and how we can possibly squeeze everything into our tight budget. Here’s the secret: Portion Control.

Now when you hear “portion control” you probably think about dieting or losing weight. When I think about portion control I think about saving money! (Although losing weight is an added bonus!*).

How? Well most of the meals in the monthly meal plan say they make 6-8 servings. For my little family of 3 eaters (I don’t include my baby in this) we should not be eating that entire dish in one sitting. We should have at least half of that dish leftover which then easily feeds us for another meal. I know a lot of you have bigger families than me so you might not have 3-4 servings leftover. BUT who says you have to eat the same thing at dinner time? Growing up, about once a week my mom would put all of the leftovers on the counter and we’d make up our own plates and heat them in the microwave. Say you had 2 or 3 servings left from 2 meals, that gives you 4-6 servings of leftovers (wait another night if you need more!).  That’s one night’s worth of dinner that you didn’t have to make or pay any additional money for.

If you are a small family and have lots of leftovers, use them for dinners and lunch. My husband gets leftovers for lunch at work probably 3 times a week (the other 2 days he gets sandwiches).

So! Have a little self control. Don’t take huge portions right off the bat. Don’t stuff yourself at meals–only eat until you’re satisfied. Divide the meals you make so they will last another meal. Add a less expensive side dish to make the meal go further.

You’ll find that your wallet and your waistline will thank you!

*When my husband and I first got married we were terrible at this (especially him!).If it tasted good, we would eat more! We spent a lot more in groceries and we we a lot heavier. Since we’ve started meal planning, eating healthier, and watching our portions, we both weigh 15-20 lbs less than when we were first married.