How to Shop at Dirt Cheap

My daughter, Christi (aka the Frugal Novice), and I went to Dirt Cheap this week.  Honestly, I had been there before by myself, and I walked through quickly and thought what a junky store.  I didn’t find anything I wanted.

Christi and hubby have found some really great bargains there on quality merchandise, so I went again with her and she showed me how to shop.  We started on one side of the store and walked up and down every aisle.  We glanced quickly but thoroughly on every shelf, and I found several bargains this week.  I was excited!

See the dimmable LED lantern above?  Christi and Brian have two of these that they bought at Target a year ago, and I thought they were cool.  Well, I found one just exactly like it for $5 this week.

See the brown blob of peanut butter on the lantern?  There was a stubborn area of sticker residue that was hard to get off.  Simple solution!  Put a blob of peanut butter and let it set for several hours.  Works great!  So, word of warning.  Their price stickers are hard to get off.

The lantern was a good deal but not as good as the next two fantastic bargains I found.  I use a Vicks Warm Mist Vaporizer in my bedroom during the winter season when mountain cedar is going crazy.  It keeps any congestion from allergies loose and helps me avoid a sinus infection.  I just bought one this week for $15 but after finding two at Dirt Cheap for $1.70 each, I’m definitely returning the $15 one. (It hasn’t been opened and I still have the receipt.)  And yes, you read that correctly.  They were $1.70 each!  The boxes were damaged, but we checked and the vaporizers are in perfect condition.

The last absolutely unbelievable bargain was finding Old Navy puffer jackets for $5 each.  Christi looked them up on her phone and they were originally $60.  I bought two to donate to people who need a coat.

Thanks to Christi showing me how to shop there, I think we might be going on a regular basis to hunt for bargains.  I forgot to mention that Christi found a cute Gap vest for $5!  I realize we won’t always find deals like we did this week, but hey.  It’s worth going a few times to find such amazing bargains!

Product Review: Family Dollar Holiday Entertaining & Gift Items


I was excited when a large box arrived on my doorstep, and when I opened it…this is what I found!  I knew that Family Dollar was sending me something, but I had no idea it would be this big!

Inside this beautifully wrapped package were all sorts of goodies. There were things for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas!


In my gift basket for “Halloween Happiness,” there were Spooky Lollipop Rings and Halloween Suckers plus a Halloween pumpkin. (Family Dollar has good prices on their candy for trick or treaters! Note the Lollipop Rings are just $2.) For Thanksgiving, there were several things: an apron (a bib apron with two large pockets AND with DuPont Teflon fabric protector to protect from stains), two holiday dessert recipes from the Family Dollar Holiday Recipe and Coupon Booklet, and a fall leaves bowl.

By the way, you might want to get the Family Dollar Holiday Recipe and Coupon Booklet to help with your entertaining needs and your budget.

The “Christmas Corner” included a Family Dollar Christmas Toy Book which has 24 pages of value packed Christmas toys, affordable for every family.  Our daughter (Christi from Frugal Novice) was visiting when I opened my Family Dollar “Fall Entertaining Toolkit” basket of goodies.  When she saw the toys they sent me, which are in the Family Dollar Toy Book, she was impressed and said that she would definitely be going to Family Dollar to purchase some toys for gifts.

They have $5 toys for kids of every age, and they feature popular name brands like Hot Wheels, Disney, and Bakugan.  In fact, they sent me a Bakugan toy.  I have to admit that I had no idea what that was, but our daughter was very familiar with Bakugan toys.  When I gave it to our grandson (Christi & Brian’s three year old), he was fascinated with it.  In the picture, you can see our grandson, dressed in his red pajamas, playing very intently with his new toy. He liked it so much that he slept with it that night, and even went to sleep with it clutched in his little hand.  It was definitely a hit!

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Family Dollar has everything from kids’ favorites like full-function Radio Control Kid Cruisers to $5 board games to Kidget clothing for newborns-toddlers to hot-priced electronics.  They have play huts for $10 such as the Disney’s Tinker Bell and Disney’s Princess.  They have something for everyone!  What is really impressive is their great selection of $5 toys and gifts.  Also available are wrapping paper and seasonal home decor accents at great prices. No wonder they’re one of the fastest-growing discount chains in the United States and also a Fortune 500 company.

If you visit Family Dollar.com, you can enter the Family Dollar Holiday Dream Dash Contest for a chance to win a 90 seconds holiday shopping spree in one of their stores.  You can enter now through November 19, 2020.  Be sure to go back and vote the week of November 22nd.

Note:  Family Dollar offers a 10% discount on bulk toy purchases of $100 or more, perfect for the charitable gift-giver!

Six Tips for Saving Money

  • Check ALL of the grocery ads every week.  Sometimes I will go to three different grocery stores in one week to buy their sale items.  I try not to make a special trip but stop at each store when I’m in that area anyway.
  • Stock up when often-used items are on sale. If something is on sale at a great price and it’s something I use often, then I’ll stock up on it while I can get it at a bargain.  For example, if I can get cereal half price then I’ll buy two or three boxes.  If chicken breasts are on sale for 99c/pound, then I’ll buy several packages and freeze most of it.  If it’s a large package, then I will separate it into two or three smaller packages.
  • Buy store brands. For the most part, store brands are just as good as name brands.  Through trial and error, though, I learned which  items need to be the name brand.
  • Cut out coupons! Remember stores other than grocery stores will take coupons. (such as Walmart and Target)  Check and see if they do.  Also, try to find stores that double and triple coupons.  Remember, it defeats the purpose to buy something just because it’s on sale.  If it’s a huge bargain and you don’t need the item, donate it to a food pantry, benevolent center, etc.
  • Plan your errands! In order to save gas, group your errands according to general areas.  For example, I try to stop by a certain grocery store because it’s on my way home.  Or I go to Sam’s Club, Target, and the bank on the same trip because they’re close to each other.
  • Re-use paper towels that are barely used.  I save paper towels that I’ve dried clean hands on or towels that are barely used.  I let them dry and then store them in a pretty dish or canister.  Whenever there is a spill, I use those paper towels.  Why get a brand new towel just to clean up a messy spill off the floor?

Great Tips for Saving Money

A lot of people are pinching pennies nowadays, so here are a few ideas for saving money:

  • Refill ink cartridges yourself when your printer runs out of ink.  Instead of paying $27 for a new printer cartridge, my husband pays $11 for printer ink and does it himself.  The bottle of ink will refill the cartridge 4 times!!!  He saves over $100 when you count in the tax.  (Be careful when doing this, though.  It’s best to do it over the sink or newspapers.)  For even more savings, buy bigger bottles of ink.
  • Refill toner cartridges yourself. Just like with the ink cartridges, you can save a lot of money here.
  • Check  GasBuddy.com  to find the best gasoline prices. You can check daily for the best gasoline prices in your area.
  • Sign up for free birthday dinners in your area.  Many restaurants do this. You can sign up online or in the restaurant. In fact, for my last birthday I received seven email certificates:  four free birthday dinners, one free appetizer, one free dessert, and a coupon for $5 off a $10 purchase.
  • Buy a programmable thermostat or adjust the thermostat. We bought a programmable one for $30, and it will eventually pay for itself.  My husband programs it to where the heat will come on when we need it and then drop the temperature when we’re away or during the night.  (We’ve also been keeping it a little cooler this winter and a little warmer on warm days than we have in the past.  I know a lot of people do this.)
  • Use energy-saving florescent light bulbs in lamps and lighting fixtures.   We have these in most of our lamps and light fixtures.  However, I brought in a lamp we never use that was in our guest bedroom and put it in the living room.  I was sitting close to it and started to feel warm.  It had a regular light bulb in it, and the heat produced from it was making me hot.  That doesn’t happen with florescent light bulbs.  Think of the energy saved!