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I got a lot of good stuff this week!  Free magazines (I promised myself awhile ago, that I will never pay for a magazine subscription) from various sources.  There is a pretty glass from Marlboro.com, two Special K Coffeehouse Protein Shakes from BzzAgent, Sweet Potato chips from Betty Crocker. The FiberOne fruit snacks are from LiveBetterAmerica.  Two samples of Clear Shampoo came from PinchMe.  The Minties dog bone came from a facebook giveaway and the NeuroSleep came from a facebook giveaway too.  Have you gotten anything good in your mailbox lately?

Disclaimer: On Mailbox Monday, I only post things that I’ve received 100% free in the mail.  They come from samples, giveaways, contests, etc.  I have not put any money out to receive anything pictured.

If you are anything like me, you hate having to pay full price and commit to beauty products that you’ve never even tried.  I don’t like paying full price for anything, let alone something that I am taking a chance on.  That’s where Beauty Box 5 comes in!  Beauty Box 5 is a subscription service that sends out deluxe samples of beauty products each month at a FRACTION of the cost.  It allows you to try before you buy the full size and it’s exciting getting a new box every month!   Here is the box that I received:

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See, it’s wrapped up like a little present and it has awesome stuff inside!  The first product I tried was the LA Fresh Travel Lite Facial Cleansing Wipes.  They smell so fresh and they are great at removing my makeup.  They are in a cute little pack and I immediately put it in my travel bag for this weekend.  They came right in time!  They condition as they cleanse and are good for all skin types.   They contain vitamin e, aloe and cucumber, which are all good at de-stressing your skin too!

The next items I used were the Coolway Shampoo & Conditioner set.  It was a great sized sample and I can use it more than once before running out.  They smell very natural and have natural ingredients.  They have no parabens, sulfates or pthalates in them either (bad stuff).  They claimed to cool, cleanse & hydrate.  I also liked that the tubes were sealed so they wouldn’t bust open during shipping.  I like the set and it made my hair nice and shiny.  But my hair tends to run on the oily side so I won’t be purchasing it anytime soon.  It would be great for when I used to dye my hair though.  Dying always dries hair out so much and this set says that it’s safe for color-treated hair.

I incorporated the OFRA lipgloss plumper into my daily routine!  It’s such a pretty color (sultry) and I think it would look good on anyone.  I am interested to see the other colors that OFRA offers.

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Last but certainly not least (since it was my favorite) was the Nubar Vanilla Cuticle Oil.  This was a great choice for right now.  Winter really takes its toll on my hands.  I open a lot of boxes at work so my hands are so dry.  My cuticles are horrendous.  I used this overnight and I noticed a big difference!  My cuticles were softer and the skin around my nails looked a lot better.  Plus, it smells wonderful.  A nice treat at bedtime!

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So, are you intrigued?  You can check out the Beauty Box 5 website here.  You can also like them on Facebook here.  You can get all the information you need.  Enjoy!

Disclaimer:  I received complimentary products in exchange for my review.  Comments and opinions are my own.  No other compensation was received.

I don’t know about you but when I’m in the grocery store, I ALWAYS look at the reduced, day-old bread.  It’s so cheap and versatile.  I usually pick up at least one item and use it in my meal plan for that week.  For instance, last time they had a pizza crust with sauce included for $1.50!  I added cheese  and a bagged salad that I already had in my fridge and a quick, frugal meal was born!  Another great meal idea is to buy a loaf of french bread off the quick sale rack and make French Toast!  It doesn’t get much cheaper than that since 90% of you probably already have eggs, milk and syrup.  The other day, I picked up a pack of day old sub rolls.  Imagine the possibilities!  I was going to milk those babies for as long as I could!  And I did.  We used them for sandwiches and hot dogs before I made these meatball subs.  They were so delicious and easy.  The leftovers were amazing as well.

 

 

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Mother of the year, here with french fries.  We had a veggie too but the plate was too full in this pic.   Plus they were baked! 😉

Meatball Subs

1/2 bag of store bought meatballs (just buy what’s on sale!)

1/2 bag of mozzarella cheese

1/2 bag of sub rolls

Jar of spaghetti sauce

Parmesan cheese

Italian blend, garlic powder & s/p to season

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Meanwhile, cut your rolls in half and sprinkle with cheeses and spices on a baking sheet.

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Heat your meatballs up in a crock pot all day with the sauce, on low (suggested) or you can heat both in a pot on the stove.  Bake your bread in the oven for about 10 minutes or until nice and toasty.

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Evenly distribute your meatballs between your rolls and put more sauce on top.  Then add more of the cheeses.  Bake in the oven for about another 10-15 minutes or until the cheese browns.  Enjoy!

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Do you have any ideas for day old bread?  Do you shop the quick sale racks?  I love getting creative and I would love to hear your opinions!

The kids and I have been pretty sick with some type of stomach thing lately.  My husband has managed to thankfully dodge it.  Needless to say, we have been washing our hands like crazy and disinfecting everything we come in contact with.

To me, hand soap is a necessary expense but not always a cost-effective one.  Years ago, I wrote about how you can make your own, using any bar soap.  I love this recipe because it makes a ton of soap and it’s so cheap!  This is a repost from my old blog but I thought it was a good one, especially during cold and flu season.  What I like is that you can use some fancy soap that you bought at Marshall’s on clearance or use all those little soaps that you get from hotels!  People will never know the difference.  So start stocking up on containers and give this a try.  The link is at the bottom of the post.

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Click here:

Homemade Hand Soap

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Holidays can be fatal to your budget…but only if you let them.  As you know, I am a self-proclaimed cheapskate.  Not a day goes by that I don’t try to think of new, creative ways that my family can use to save money and/or get something for free.  Some of my ideas are unorthodox but they work for us.  Certain holidays are not celebrated in my family, at least not on the specified day or in the traditional sense.  Valentines Day is one of those holidays.  So, while everyone is trying to outdo one another with flowers and candy, the Lane family is plotting how we can have the most fun with the least amount of money!  Here are some of the things we do for Valentines Day:

* We buy our candy on February 15th.  It’s still fresh and it’s always around 50% off.  No, it’s not the BEST deal but it’s the best selection and sometimes that works out better.  Buy the leftovers later to use in recipes and so forth.

*We go out using one of our Christmas gift cards, combined with a coupon of course. We also either go to lunch or a few days early or late.  Get caught in a crowd or pay holiday prices?  What do you think I am, an amateur?!?!

*We buy our decorations on clearance.  The Lane family stocks up on Valentines decor and cards one year in advance.  This way, you don’t have to rush out at the last minute plus you get everything at the best price.  Just be careful that nothing has a year on it.

*My flowers come from a grocery store, again, the day after.  Grocery store bouquets are just as pretty and they usually have some leftover after the holiday, on clearance.  Just put those babies in water and add some Sprite. They will perk right up!

*We might make a special dinner at home.  Restaurants cost a small fortune.  Plan a menu of what you would order at your favorite restaurant and then find the recipe.  Make it at home, together.  Thank you, Pinterest.

*Use your imagination.  Make your loved one a gift.  Those are more heartfelt anyway! I made this man-bouquet for my husband a few years ago.  I used a vase and ribbon that we already had and cheap heart sprigs.  The jerky and candy were on sale too.  It costs around $5 to make and he loved it.

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These might be common sense but I hope you might rethink how you spend Valentine’s Day.  Don’t let card companies and jewelry stores tell you how to celebrate!  🙂

So, what are your plans this V Day?