A slightly boring week in the life of a fairly average couponer (Great Wolf Lodge, recycling and pancakes)

by Melody on November 14, 2012

Each week I will be sharing a round-up of all the different ways I saved our family money.  The purpose of this series is to highlight the fact that there are SO many different methods you can use to lower your overall budget that don’t involve mad-crazy coupon shopping.

I will even be mentioning those methods that may seem insignificant to you.  I truly feel that anything that saves time is saving money in some form or another.





Simple Freezer Cooking

While I’ve done my fair share of large-scale freezer cooking, we have just not had the time or energy to focus on anything but moving into our new house and the holidays that are fast approaching.  However, that doesn’t mean that I can’t make a little extra here and there to throw in the freezer for a rainy day.

I made a simple version of these Cinnamon Swirl Pumpkin Pancakes for my kids a few days ago.  They can’t come close to eating a whole batch, so I threw the rest in a quart-sized freezer bag and will pop them out individually and toss them in the toaster on a busy morning.  Super easy, semi-healthy and my kids love it!  I do this with muffins, waffles, cookies, anything that freezes well.

Recycling in a non-recycling city

We recently moved to a new city that doesn’t offer free curbside recycling like our old one did.  I’ve gotten so used to keeping all of our recyclables that I was a little stumped at first.  It felt just plain wrong to throw them away, but I didn’t want things piling up in the garage.

I ran to Walmart and found these stackable bins for just $6 each.  They barely take up any room and when they get full, I just throw them in the car and stop by one of the many recycle bins in our area (quite a few are on my way to preschool or other errands).  While I know this isn’t necessarily saving money, I feel like we’re doing good things.  Now, I imagine I should have found recycle bins made out of recycled plastic to complete the cycle.

Great Wolf Lodge

We have been wanting to go to Great Wolf Lodge as a family for SO long.  We were finally able to snag a great discount through a recent Living Social deal and, while still expensive, was a significant savings.  It is still a little under a 5-hour drive for us, so we knew we had to find some ways to cut back on what we spent.

Our room had a small fridge and microwave, so I packed a cooler with snacks, fruit, pre-made sandwiches for the boys, salads for my husband and I and some drinks.  Our kids are still of the toddler set, so we were able to pry them away from the slides a few times to get them fed.  There are restaurants on-site and some fast food places in the area, but this saved us a huge chunk of money.  Not to mention, since our kids had been running all day, I wouldn’t imagine they would do so well sitting down for dinner in a restaurant.

There are a few fun free events and activities for the kids, just check their website or ask a concierge when you get there.  If you can swing it, make sure they don’t get you into your room on time and you’ll get a free breakfast.  We lucked out.

While the whole trip was a little more than we would normally spend on a quick getaway, the boys had an AMAZING time.  It is so family and kid-friendly and they have thought of everything.

I would LOVE to hear how you saved your family money this week.  What methods do you find are the most efficient and effective?

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