Don’t Miss July’s Clearance Racks!

4760917686_409dc27952_oSummer has barely begun — I mean, really, the first day of summer was June 21! — but in the eyes of retailers, our favorite season is over. But don’t get depressed about the impending fall weather. Instead, give yourself a little retail therapy and take advantage of the clearance racks that are sure to fill your favorite stores this month. Here is your Fourth of July weekend shopping checklist:

  • swim suits
  • sandals and flip flops
  • shorts and tanks
  • sunglasses
  • grills
  • patio furniture

If you can hold out a little longer, grills and patio furniture will drop in price even further as fall grows nearer. But when it comes to clothes, now is the time to stock up on summer gear because it will be gone before you know it. Have you ever tried to shop for a swim suit in August? Good luck! They’ve been replaced with fall cardigans and backpacks.

Some of my favorite department stores already started their semi annual sales this past weekend. If you’ve got a day off work for the holiday weekend, celebrate your freedom with the freedom to score a deal! Happy shopping!

Image by Doug Murray/Flickr. 


When Life Gives You Cicadas…Make Gumbo!

The east coast is about to be plagued by 60 billion of these plump little freaky creatures crawling out of the ground.
2013-cicada-recipesEvery 17 years Cicada rise from whatever they are doing under our yards to cover trees, sidewalks, driveways, roads, porches, and decks with their creepy chirping bug bodies.

Is there a silver lining associated with an infestation of noisy bugs?

You bet there is, each and every one of those little guys are Deee-Lishhh-us!  Some folks even call them land shrimp.

Is your mouth watering yet?  I know mine is.

Need some ideas on how to cook up your cicadas?  I’ve got ya covered.  Here are 12 lip-smackin’ good cicada recipes.  Bon Apetite!


Recipes Include:

1. Cicada & Grits
2. Fried Green Cicada
3. Cicada Sweet Potato Biscuits
4. Cicada-Kabobs
5. Deep Fried Coconut Cicada
6. Cicada Stuffed Potatoes
7. Baked Cicada Scampi
8. Roasted Cicada Salad
9. Cicada Casserole
10. Cicada Burger
11. Curried Cicada Butternut Bisque
12. Cicada Gumbo


Get Your Free copy of When Life Gives You Cicadas…Make Gumbo

An Interview with Consumer Queen

This is the fourth post in a series on money-saving mavens who’ve changed their lives by altering their spending and saving styles. Read interviews with Money Saving Mom, the $5 Dinner Mom, and J.D. Roth of Get Rich Slowly. Stay tuned for more interviews with frugal living rock stars who’ll share tips and secrets on financial success. 

melissa-200x300Name: Melissa Garcia a.k.a. “Oklahoma’s Coupon Queen”
website: Consumer Queen
1. What is your number one money-saving strategy for frugal living beginners? 
Patience and commitment. Most people think they can turn frugal over night. While yes there are steps you can take to change immediately you need to be real with yourself and understand it’s going to take some time to learn all the tips that are out there. Find a local blog that not only posts about couponing but frugal living as well. For example, we are a money-saving blog who does post a lot of deals but we also offer our fans homemade remedies and frugal lifestyle tips.
2. Which segment of your life is the easiest to live frugally? Why?
I bet you all thought I would say couponing. Nope, because couponing does require some dedication! My recommendation is to start looking for small changes you can do at home. Unplug appliances when not in use. Switch to natural cleaners such as vinegar & baking soda which are much cheaper. You’ll not only be saving money but helping the environment too!

Memorial Day Weekend Sales: Get’em While They’re Hot!

Memorial DAy SalesMemorial Day weekend is a time for barbecues, bike rides, time spent with family, and . . .  a trip to the mall. Even if the sun is shining, you might want to block off an afternoon to shop some great deals and kick off the summer right. Whether you’re looking for a new warm-weather wardrobe, vacation apparel, or that perfect wedding or graduation gift, now is the time to cross some things off your shopping list.

As usual, the department stores are going gangbusters over this holiday weekend. Spend $99 and get an extra 15% off plus free shipping at with the promo code SAVE. Take an extra 25% off clearance (online only) and shop other deals on summer must-haves like an extra 20-25% of shoes and swim suits.

Memorial Day sales continue through Tuesday. Find deals on big ticket items like major appliances, vacuums, grills, and patio furniture. If your lawn is going to make its big debut this weekend, go for the mowers, weed trimmers, and gardening supplies. See the complete list of sales listed on their website here.

Through Monday, use the promo code LAUNCH16 (or just shop in stores) to take an extra 20% off almost anything when you use a JCP credit card or take an extra 10% off if you use cash or credit. Swimwear is 40-50% off and clearance is discounted an additional 30-70%.

Image by Heath/Flickr.

An Interview with J.D. Roth of Get Rich Slowly and More Than Money

This is the third post in a series on money-saving mavens who’ve changed their lives by altering their spending and saving styles. Read the first interview with Money Saving Mom and the second from the $5 Dinner Mom. Stay tuned for more interviews with frugal living rock stars who’ll share tips and secrets on financial success. 

JD RothName: J.D. Roth
Occupation: Founder of Get Rich Slowly and author of Your Money: The Missing Manual.
Websites: Get Rich Slowly and

1. What is your number one money-saving tip for frugal living beginners?
My number one tip for people new to smart money management is to track every penny you spend. There are a lot of aspects to frugal living, and some of them are deeper psychological concepts. But I think the single best thing anyone new to frugality can do — and even some people who have been frugal for a long time! — is to track your income and expenses. By doing so, you can get a realistic snapshot of where your money actually goes. Too many times, we believe we’ve cut back on food, let’s say, when actually our food budgets are still very high. By tracking spending — whether with a spreadsheet on your home computer, Quicken, or online with something like — you’re able to see exactly where your “money leaks” are so that you can take action to plug them.

2. Which segment of your life is the easiest to live frugally?
For me, it’s easiest to live frugally with entertainment. That’s primarily because my girlfriend and I are good at entertaining ourselves without spending a lot of money. We don’t need to go to movies or buy DVDs or go to concerts. We’re perfectly happy sitting home on the couch watching TV or chatting with friends.

This brings up an important point, actually. I think one key aspect of frugal living is practicing what I call “conscious spending.” Conscious spending is the process of choosing what you spend your money on. It’s important to give yourself permission to spend on the things that really matter to you — in my case, fitness and travel — while simultaneously cutting back hard on the things that don’t — in my case, entertainment and transportation and furniture. In other words, frugality is all about spending as little as possible in every area of your life EXCEPT the ones that bring you the most fulfillment.

3. What’s a surprising reward you’ve reaped during your pursuit of frugal living?
Frugal living has brought me a couple of surprising rewards. For one, I’ve built better self-discipline. I’m not only able to resist spending, but I’ve transferred that skill to my diet, which has allowed me to lose fifty pounds and to get into shape. But the best reward of all, I think, has come from the great connections I’ve made with other people as I’ve shared my story on the web. Creating and writing for was one of the best things I’ve ever experienced. I’ve retired from that site now, but I still have a loyal audience at, and that’s all because of my frugal life.

Ring in Spring with Affordable Outdoor Furniture

photo (8)I’m in the market for some new patio furniture for two outdoor spaces of mine. The catch? I really don’t want to spend a lot. Especially because I live in a city and my patio furniture could realistically get stolen at any moment. I struck gold this weekend with two great finds at Costco and Target. You might want to pick up Target’s Patio Look Book (pictured at left) in store.

Bistro Sets for Under $100
Check the floor of your local Costco for this unbelievable deal on outdoor furniture: $20 chairs and a $40 table. The black iron set is small but sturdy, and who can complain about putting together a nice bistro set for $80? The table came complete with a center hole for an umbrella so we ventured over to Target for a 7.5 foot Room Essentials umbrella on sale for $49 and a $10 Room Essentials umbrella base (also on sale!).  The final cost for my brand new front patio set? $139.

Outdoor Living Room Sets for Well Under $1000
When it comes to outdoor patio furniture, a living room-like set-up seemed way out of my budget. They often cost as much as their indoor counterparts which is not OK in my opinion — especially once winter rolls back around! Well, Target is saving the day with their affordable and trendy line of furniture. The best part? It’s currently 20% off.

My favorite set is the Threshold Lowry 4-Piece Upholstered Patio Conversation Furniture Set, which includes two chairs, a coffee table, and a love seat for $697. The site includes many other upholstered four-piece sets for as low as $400 and as high as $999. I had no idea I could create an outdoor oasis for more than half the price of popular brands like Crate and Barrel.

Have you landed any great deals on patio furniture? Comment below!

A $99 Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0

Samsung_Galaxy_Tab_2_7_inchYou read that right, a BRAND NEW Galaxy Tablet for $99.  BehindTheCounter will be offering an exclusive one day only $100 off coupon for the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 at Wicked-Cheap.  This means you can snag what may be the most popular tablet for under $100.  This is the same ultra popular tablet that Amazon and Best Buy are offering for $179.

Why is this tablet being sold so far below everyone else’s price?  It’s a special promotion by Wicked-Cheap exclusively available here at BehindTheCounter.  The coupon will be released on  BehindTheCounter’s facebook page.  The coupon will only work for the $199 Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 featured at Wicked-Cheap.

How do you get one?

Step 1:  Like our facebook page now.

Step 2:  Get the coupon code.  The coupon code will be released on our our facebook page at 12 noon EST on Wednesday – April 10, 2013 .

Step 3:  Head over to Wicked-Cheap’s Galaxy Tab page and purchase your Galaxy Tab.

Be quick, it’s a limited supply and the coupon is only good for one day while supplies last.  These kinds of special offers usually sell out fast, so you might want to be online and refreshing our facebook page at 12 noon Wednesday – April 10, 2013 .

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