Tuesday, December 30, 2008
I didn't mention in my previous post, another great thing about Coupon Mom's website is that she always has the best deals on Restaurant.com gift certificates. Right now (until 12/31) get a $25 gift certificate using her code CELEBRATE and they are only $2 each!
I always get nervous about using these, but they always work like a charm. Just be sure to check the restrictions, some places have none (those are the best!) and then some want to put rotten restrictions on them, like 'only valid Mon-Thurs' or for parties of more than 4, for example.
Also, the selection might be low right now, but they re-stock the first of the month, and you can usually check her site then for a code for $4-5 each.
image from iateapie on flickr
Whoa, a couple more freebies out there! Thanks to moneysavingmom.
Send a text message saying 'select' to 467467 and you can sign up for a free can of Campbell's Select Harvest soup. I have received this coupon before and it looks like it is reset to do again!
Also, click here for a free sample of Orville Redenbacher's natural gourmet popcorn. You do not have to put in a Kroger number to sign up!
Now for the reminder, almost 90% of my coupons expire tomorrow, December 31st. I don't normally buy things just because I have a coupon, but you may want to pull all your expiring coupons and see if there is anything you want to pick up. I use couponmom.com sometimes to check coupon matchups for ShopRite (if you are in NJ, she also has Stop & Shop and Pathmark matchups, no Acme though, that's what I'm for ;) Just go to her site, you may need to register if you haven't already, and click on "Grocery deals by state".
I might be swinging over to ShopRite tomorrow to get a few things before all those coupons expire!
Ring in the new year with some free stuff! Here's some new ones and some others that are still available. Don't feel like filling out your address a million times? Check out my post on Roboform.
Bausch and Lomb is offering free samples of lens cleaning cloths
Don Francisco coffee will send you a sample of their breakfast blend
Try Total Cranberry Crunch cereal
Register for a free sample of Kerasal and heal your cracked feet
Looking for a BPA free baby bottle? Try a sample of Playtex drop-ins
This kind of looks like the kind that won't come (just being honest!), but you can request a sample of Oxyfresh toothpaste here
...and one more Pampers point for you, enter: THRIFTYMOMMYGTG
A free Glad ForceFlex garbage bag (just got mine in the mail yesterday)
Free sample of GoodNites
Try Benefiber On the Go
Get a free sample of Always INFINITY
Dunkin Dark coffee samples still available
Enjoy! Love, Bay
Monday, December 29, 2008
I'm coming out of holiday hibernation and have a bunch of cool stuff starting up soon. This is #1!
It is going to be so much easier for you to tell everyone you know about my blog ;) ... just type queenmotherblog.com! No more messing with this .blogspot.com stuff.
So whenever you want to pop in and leave me a comment, just go to www.queenmotherblog.com Hint, hint!
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
I am taking a quick little break to celebrate Christmas with my family!
Enjoy your holidays and see you soon!
Here's a picture of my tree, as promised. The picture above is my new nativity set that I love.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Ok, no blood, but sweat, sure. And tears, almost. Let me just tell you...I worked hard for these freebies! It is like a mini-soap opera. Last night I was talking to Marc about the CVS deals, and he was letting me know that he had to leave really early for a football game and that the roads were going to be really bad. I was stressing about the idea of taking Rayna out in the morning in icy conditions just to go to CVS...but I know the stuff would be gone if I didn't act fast. There is a 24 hour CVS not too far from me, and I thought, is it nuts to go and get the deals at midnight? We were awake, so Marc is like, yeah do it!!
Ahem. There are TONS of crazy deal-shoppin' ladies hitting up the 24 hour CVS at just before midnight. (There was even a lady who dragged her infants out in a stroller, which I thought was just crossing the line.) I managed to get most of the free stuff (see above), but all of the Arm & Hammer cleaners were gone, the heating pads were gone, etc. I felt ok about my amount of free stuff, though, and I came home.
Then comes this morning. Marc's game is postponed due to the weather and the roads are not that bad. So we go to church, have lunch with my parents afterwards, and then stop by their CVS. It was ransacked! They had nothing that I didn't already purchase. Finally on my way home, I stopped by my local CVS to give it one last hurrah. Also ransacked and they say we don't even carry that Arm & Hammer cleaner.
Along the way I also picked up the $15 in Coke, get $5 ecbs deal, buying 4 cases of Coke (using 4 $1 off coupons from MyCokeRewards) and a Smartwater. Those ecbs don't print. Also, I noticed from the night before, my Sally polish and eyeshadow ecbs didn't print. I'm explaining the scenario to the manager and he is super incredulous thinking I am a professional CVS sheister. I was hitting up a store at midnight, after all.
Sigh. So I did get my ecbs to print, finally, and I am pretty happy to have a year's supply of free listerine and to have restocked my soda. But is it terrible that I still am really wishing for the other free stuff? lol...I think it becomes an addiction. I also didn't realize that Right Guards were limit 5, and I only had picked up 2 when I had the chance. D'oh! What is different about this free bonanza that everyone in the tri-state area turned out? The word is really spreading about CVS!
Oh, but I still didn't pay more than $3 out of pocket for it all, including the sodas. So I'm still pretty happy! :)
Got all those extra bucks from Thanksgiving? Well it is time to use them for more totally free stuff at CVS! There is over $200 worth of free items available ONLY today and tomorrow!
Check out this post at Thrifty Mama for the details!
Also, one not mentioned, Crest Prohealth toothpaste and rinse are $2.99, printing $2 extrabucks, so the "final" price is $0.99 each (limit 2). There are $1 off Prohealth toothpaste and $1 off Prohealth rinse coupons from last Sunday's P&G Brandsaver insert, making these both free.
Now I hope the roads are ok to drive this morning, 'cause I'm going to CVS!
Saturday, December 20, 2008
One of my favoritest chain restaurants is Maggiano's. We like to go with another couple and get the all-you-can-eat "family-style" deal. I don't know how I stumbled across it, because with other desserts staring me in the face, what made me choose lemon cookies? But one time I did go ahead and pick them as one of the desserts, Vera's Lemon Cookies (to be precise), and I have been super-hooked ever since. They are little crescent shaped iced lemon cookies that just fall apart in your mouth after you dip 'em in your coffee...mmm.
Well, in my constant quest for a delicious lemon cookie, I decided to try the recipe from December's issue of Real Simple magazine. As a disclaimer I'm going to say that I *cannot* bake at ALL. Poor Marc asked me to make brownies to bring to his Bible group on Thursday and sadly he brought a pan of undercooked brownie goo. I can cook well, but just no luck with baking.
Soooo, YES! Those cookies in the picture are mine. I really made them and they are super cute looking and delicious! I am VERY proud of myself, can you tell? I ate tons of them tonight and there are still a bunch left. There's no fancy ingredients and it only uses one juicy lemon, so these would also be frugal little cookies to give as gifts. Don't worry about the icing getting messed up in your packaging, it will harden to a shiny glaze.
Here is the recipe, thanks to Real Simple magazine:
Glazed Lemon Cookies
3/4 c (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp.
3/4 c granulated sugar
2 large egg yolks
1/2 t vanilla extract
1/4 t kosher salt
2 cups a/p flour
1 c confectioners' sugar
2 T fresh lemon juice (more if necessary)
1 t grated lemon zest (zest your lemon before you juice it)
With an electric mixer, beat the butter and granulated sugar until fluffy. Add the egg yolks, vanilla, and salt and beat to combine. (from me- I did not have kosher salt and I'm pretty sure my butter was salted, so I just threw a tiny pinch of table salt.) Gradually add the flour, mixing until just incorporated.
Divide the dough in half and shape into 1 1/4 inch-diameter logs. Wrap in wax paper and refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes. (me again- my dough was very dry and I couldn't get it into a log shape for anything. I rolled it into two balls of dough and refrigerated...in Saran wrap because I didn't have any wax paper...I know, I'm like MacGyver!)
Heat oven to 350 F. Slice the logs into 3/8" thick pieces (I rolled little balls and flattened them) and space them 1 1/2" inches apart on parchment-lined baking sheets (yeah, no parchment either, it was fine.). Bake until lightly golden, 16-20 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer to cooling racks to cool completely.
In a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners' sugar, lemon juice, and zest until it forms a thick but pourable glaze (add more lemon juice if necessary). Dip the top of each cookie into the glaze and let set, about 15 minutes.
Note, instead of refrigerating the dough, freeze the logs for up to 2 months. To bake, follow the recipe instructions, cutting and baking the dough from frozen, and use the upper end of the time range.
Ta-da! I hope you like them as much as I do. I really think they'd be a nice addition to your Christmas cookies. Love, Bay
Thursday, December 18, 2008
photo by boopsie.daisy on flickr
Just out of festivity, here are a few Christmas-related links that I have enjoyed and wanted to pass on.
- There is something so innocent and magical about kids believing in Santa Claus, I just love it. I don't think my dad approved of having us believe in Santa, but my mom did, so in the early years I was a little confused as to whether he existed or not. I stumbled across this page, and think this is just adorable. Very cute for kids that might be at the age of doubting!
- Here is a good story from a former atheist: What I loved about Christmas was Christ.
- Further cementing my reputation as a geek, I will admit that as a young teen I saw Sandra Bullock's "The Net" and pretty much wanted to be her character. Order a pizza online and throw up this fireplace screensaver and you can be antisocial too! I could do without the crackle sound effects.
- Ever wonder how Christmas is celebrated in other countries? Here is an exhaustive list. I like how Micronesians are in church all day long and then applaud themselves when receiving two bars of soap.
First, if you are new to working deals at Acme, please read the background info on one of my earlier deals posts. This will explain how the coupons double & how to print two copies of the printable coupons.
I guess Acme is making us wait until after the holidays to bring back the good sales. Here is what I see for this week:
Bird's Eye Voila! frozen meal kits are 33% off (sale prices range from $4.01-$$5.35). Use the $1 off two coupons here. If you purchase 3 packages, hurry and complete the rebate form available here to get a free Charlie Brown dvd of your choice. It seems that the free DVD also comes with some coupons.
For 4 days only (12/19-12/22) Kraft Philadelphia cream cheese bars are on sale for $1. Sign up your email here and you will get a coupon for a $1 off 2. That makes these only $0.50 each! That's a great price and a lot of holiday recipes require cream cheese (like cheese balls ;)
For 4 days only (12/19-12/22) Ocean Spray cranberry sauce cans are on sale for $1 each.
Kellogg's cereal straws, 20 oz. Raisin Bran, 12 oz. Crispix & 18 oz. Bitesize Frosted Mini Wheats are on sale 6 for $9 (This whole circular is putting a lot of misleading "$1.50 each" with small print saying "must buy 6", so be careful! You might think you could only buy one or two and you will NOT get the sale price). There are $1 off two coupons here, a $1 off Frosted Mini Wheats here, and $1 off one printables here. If you used two of each coupon, you could have 6 boxes of cereal for $0.66 each!
Hillshire Farms Lit'l Smokies or Weiners are on sale 2 for $6. There is a save $1 off two coupon from a recent insert that would make these $2.50 each.
Fresh Express Complete Salad Kits are $3 each. Use the $1 printable here to get them for $2 each. There are also $0.50 coupons available at the same link for Fresh Express tender greens salad blends that will double to $1 off.
Pop Secret is one sale buy one get one free this week. Pay for one box at $3.49, use the $0.50 off two boxes coupon from last weeks paper which will double to $1, and they will be $1.25 a box.
Stove Top boxed stuffing mix is on sale for $1.25 a box.
Get two 12-packs of Coca-Cola cans for $3 when you purchase two Nabisco snack crackers at 2 for $4. So spend $7 total for two boxes of crackers and two boxes of soda using the coupon on the last page of the circular.
That seems to be all that I can see in the way of good deals this week. If you have any, please feel free to post in the comments. Love, Bay
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
In my freebies post yesterday, I mentioned a code for 10 free Pampers Gifts to Grow points. Freebies 4 Mom has a post up with some more codes & alerting that December is free shipping month to cash in on your rewards...I didn't know you had to pay shipping on the rewards normally! That is kind of ridiculous, but good to know that December is the time to redeem.
With these codes I now have enough in my account for a free box of Cheerios! ;)
The 10 point-er I put up yesterday:
The rest of these are 1 point each:
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Even though my photo editing skills were always seriously limited, I always managed to somehow have Photoshop on my home computer. Recently, when I purchased a new one, it didn't come with Photoshop, and I didn't seem to mind for a while.
Enter my blog, and suddenly I want to do basic photo editing like cropping photos. That is when I found out about Picnik. It is totally free, you don't need to download anything...you don't even need to register!
All you do is upload your picture from your computer, facebook, or whatever site you have it on. From there you can crop, brighten, add text, etc. I used Picnik to add the text to my banner up top. This is a free layout where you have to add the text to the image and that's how I did it! (Aside: I was also tinkering with Picnik to create my own blog button, but I'm gonna hold out until I get a new blog template. I like the free option I have now, but would like to get something a little more "professional." Know any good blog designers?)
So here's a button for you to click if you wanna hop on Picnik yourself.
I'm sure it will work for you. Check out the other posts on Works for Me Wednesday at Rocks in my Dryer!
So if last week was a light posting week for me, this week is extra so! There are the doctors appointments, meeting with friends, and Christmas shopping going on, and then I will be back in full swing again.
So hang tight! I have a pantry project I've been working on that I'm going to put up here soon that might really help you.
Also, I put up a couple of really quick freebies in the post below.
Here a just a couple quick ones, I wanted to get the magazine on here because they go fast!
Do you enter Pampers Gifts to Grow points? If you do, enter 10 free by putting in the code "WEAPPRECIATEU08"
Get a free 2009 planner with information on bone health
Get a free one year subscription to Self magazine
Try a sample of Pet n Shape healthy pet treats
(Thanks to Mercedes at Common Sense with Money for these last two!)
Enjoy! Love, Bay
Monday, December 15, 2008
It looks like the double cash back has been extended still...so you can keep using this deal!
It is the last day before Christmas to earn double cash back on all of your online purchases at Ebates! Shop today and get 12% cash back on your purchases at Barnes & Noble and 20% back on Kodak Gallery! I am definitely going to use this today to complete my online shopping. I clicked through Ebates and made a purchase from Sephora last week and already have $6 put in my cash back account.
Click here to join!
Friday, December 12, 2008
Print a coupon for a free bag of Riceworks gourmet brown rice crisps here. You can see where to go get them by checking their store locator.
Free subscription to Scholastic Parent & Child magazine. Remember, these really are free with no strings attached. Remember the free TV Guide subscription? I'm getting mine now.
Register online with Walden Media and get a free copy of the film Amazing Grace & a 2009 calendar. My brother had rented this a while back and liked it, can't wait to get it for free!
Try a free sample of Nectavida nutritional supplement
Walgreens is offering a free sample pack of Kotex products
Download the Hidden Expedition: Titanic game for free, by clicking "buy now" and using the checkout code HOLIDAYTITANIC
Teachers (and homeschool teachers) can get a free poster of the Scientific Method for your classroom.
If you have a Facebook profile, you can get a free mini-spray of Clinique Happy perfume by clicking here. Click where it says "get yours now."
Free 5 issue subscription to Cosmopolitan magazine here
Get a free sample of Aquafresh Extreme Clean toothpaste here, click on "Savings & Special Offers"
Enjoy! Love, Bay
Thursday, December 11, 2008
This has been a busy week for me, shopping & meeting up with friends for the holidays. That combined with not-too-many great deals has made for a slow posting week. I thought I'd just type up one post with my WW updates along with a deal.
I really like the Entertainment book, and think that it is almost always worth its price. Right now, Walgreens is offering a $5 register reward (just like a CVS extracare buck) for any $25 purchase. The $25 purchase requirement is before all coupons. Also, there is a $10 off Entertainment book coupon in the Walgreens store circular. Purchase your area Entertainment book for $25, use the $10 off ad-coupon & get a $5 register reward for your next transaction, and it is like getting the book for $10! These also make good gifts; I think the movie theatre coupons alone make it worth it. I tried to hit up my local Walgreens on my way to meet a friend for lunch and they were sold out! I tell ya, I have NO luck with Walgreens!
So this morning was also my Weight Watcher meeting day and I have not been posting much about WW here, because almost nothing is going on. I lose 1/2 pound, I gain 1/2 pound, today I was down 3/4 lb...I think it is just because it is the holidays and I know that New Years will bring some more determination. So it is kind of like oh well for now ;) But I really wanted to make it today, because WW unveiled a new program called "Momentum", and now there is no more Flex or Core plans, it is all one program. It really still seems to be the same for people who have followed the Flex plan (counting points), except now they are telling you to eat more of the Core foods. They want you to use your points on more filling foods like whole grains, lean protein and vegetables rather than just eating a slice of pizza for 8 points and nothing else. Well, duh! But now you can also bank your activity points which is really good, because it never failed that the days that I would get in a big workout would be the days that I didn't feel like eating all of my points. So there are some good changes there.
That's it. Hopefully we get some more good deals popping up right before Christmas!
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Going beyond the usual gift giving for my family and friends is an important part of Christmas for me. Every year I try to sponsor Christmas gifts for children and donate money to causes that I care about. I was talking to one of my friends about ways that I am giving this Christmas, and we decided that a post here was in order. Not because I want to toot my horn in any way, but because I hope to inspire others to give as well.
Money- The most obvious way to give this season is to donate money to a worthy cause. This Christmas I am giving a monetary donation to:
Jewels for Jamie- Jewels for Jamie is a new foundation started by Jason & Nikki Arnold after the loss of their newborn daughter, Jamie. Jason & Nikki were able to have keepsake pendants made from Jamie's hand & footprints, and these keepsakes immediately became their most valuable possessions. The Arnold's have started Jewels for Jamie to provide these tangible mementos to other parents who have experienced a perinatal loss. They are offering up support services in the Tucson, AZ area, with a hope to expand from there. If you would like to read more about their story & their mission, you can visit their website. Donations may be sent to:
7049 E. Tanque Verde
Tucson, AZ 85715-5311
Gifts- Every year I have been able to find a program where I can sponsor Christmas for a needy child. The last two years Marc's job has had a program, and previously I was able to find something similar through my mom's job. If your workplace or church doesn't have a program like this, you can always contact your local United Way or county social services to see if they have requests from local families. This year I purchased gifts for a local 4 year old boy who requested "anything Spiderman." That was actually surprisingly easy & I was able to get three really nice presents for a great price.
Operation Christmas Child- Another way I am giving gifts is by making two shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child. I had actually never heard about this before, until some fellow bloggers wrote about their participation. What you do is put together a shoebox filled with age appropriate toys, hard candy, socks, toothpaste & other approved items and OCC will distribute the boxes, along with a gospel message, to needy children throughout the world. You can work on your boxes all year and turn them in at the nationwide distribution centers in November, or mail them in any time throughout the year. It really is easy to participate since a lot of the items are things you can get free through the usual 'deals'. Which leads me to...
Donating your surplus "deal" items- If you are a regular reader of this blog, or any others that promote CVS-ing & couponing, you are probably accumulating a bit of surplus free stuff. My parents' church has a food bank and I can easily donate extra items there (like all those free Suave shampoos & conditioners I scored a couple months back). If your church doesn't have a regular distribution, your local women's shelter probably accepts these items. That is why I never pass up a free deal. Even if it is something I won't use, I can get it and donate it to a worthy cause. Why leave it on the shelf? Another idea for your deal items is to give them as bonus gifts to friends and family. These items make great stocking stuffers or you could package a little basket.
I hope this post has given you some ideas for how to give a little extra this Christmas. God bless! Love, Bay
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
photo by iChaz on flickr
I think every online shopper is at least vaguely aware of coupon codes online, but I wanted to put this up as a resource for you when looking for coupon codes.
If you are looking for a really quick coupon code to get you in and out of your shopping cart fast, check www.retailmenot.com. I've gone here to check for Victoria's Secret coupon codes (because VS actually lets you use THREE in one transaction!) & they also have other stores available. For example, there is a $10 off $30 coupon for American Girl listed here. I have also found retailmenot to be good for Papa John's online coupons.
If you want to get the most bang for your buck, shop through a program that will give you extra rewards, such as MyPoints and Ebates. I've already written about my love for MyPoints, and I often complete a lot of my online purchases through Mypoints because I will earn big points for them, such as right now Overstock.com is offering MyPoints members 10 points per dollar in addition to their site-wide free shipping.
Ebates is another program you can use. Shop by clicking through Ebates' links to your favorite merchants and you will earn cash back on your purchases. Right now is double cash back, so some sites are giving 8% cash back! You will get this money in the form of a check in February (Ebates sends out checks several times a year). What is great is that Ebates shows you what other coupon code offers you can use in addition to your cash back. If you want to sign up under my referral and earn a $5 bonus, you can sign up here.
Whatever you do, don't shop online without coupon codes and without getting something in return. Combine these offers with a rewards-generating credit card and you can get yourself some really good bonuses for things that you have to purchase anyway.
Hope this helps! Love, Bay
This post is part of Works for Me Wednesday. Be sure to check out the other WFMW tips at Rocks in my Dryer.
image by africankelli on flickr
For those of you who would rather make homemade gifts this year, or don't know what to buy various teachers, co-workers, doormen...There are gifts in a jar. Gifts in a jar can be anything, like the beautiful limoncello above, to pre-made cookies and candies. Most common, and probably the most economical for you to make, are the mixes in a jar.
It is not just soup or chocolate chip cookie mix, either. You can make anything from trail mixes, to breakfast mixes. Here are a few different ones that won't put too much strain on your wallet. Just make little cards with the name of the mix, the additional ingredients and instructions. You can also decorate the tops of the jars with fabric & attach the cards with raffia, or cover with tissue paper and tie the card on with ribbon.
Raisin Bran Muffins (I loved these as a kid!)
Use a 1qt. canning jar & pack the ingredients down in the order listed:
1 1/2 cups All Bran cereal
1 1/4 cups self-rising flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup raisins
Attach to jar:
Additional ingredients needed:
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup melted butter or margarine
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Empty mix in a large bowl. Combine dry mix and then add additional ingredients. Mix well. Spoon batter into greased muffin tins 2/3 of the way full. Bake 16 minutes or until golden brown. Enjoy!
Apple Cinnamon Pancakes (or whatever dried fruit you use!)
Use a 1 qt. canning jar & pack down the ingredients in the order listed:
3 cups flour
3 T sugar
2 T baking powder
1/2 cup dried apples (or whichever fruit you want to use, blueberries, etc.)
4 t. cinnamon (if you are not using apples, you can nix this if you want, I'm not a cinnamon fan)
1 t. salt
Attach to jar:
Additional ingredients needed:
3/4 cup milk
2 T vegetable oil
Combine dry mix and measure 1 1/3 c. Return excess mix to jar. In a mixing bowl, combine milk, egg and oil. Whisk in 1 1/3 c. of pancake mix until moistened (will still have lumps). Cook on lightly greased skillet. Makes about 10 5" pancakes.
Cranberry Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix
Use a 1 qt. canning jar & pack the ingredients down in the order listed:
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder (you may need to wipe the jar down after this layer)
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 cup Craisins
1 cup chocolate chips
Combine 1 3/4 cups of flour, 1 tsp. baking powder & 1/2 tsp. baking soda and use as the last layer.
Attach to jar:
Additional ingredients needed:
1 1/2 sticks melted butter or margarine
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Empty mix into a large bowl. Combine dry mix with the additional ingredients and mix well. Drop rounded tablespoonfuls onto greased cookie sheets and bake for 13-15 minutes. Yields about 30 cookies.
Monday, December 8, 2008
I've been busy running around doing all the usual Christmas shopping, so it has been a slow news weekend. I found a couple of posts about free items at Target and I thought I'd pass them along. Not sure if I'm gonna run out to Target for these, but if you are stopping by it is worth a shot!
Moneysavingmom has a post about possible free Rayovac batteries at Target here. If you can find the Rayovac batteries in your Target's dollar section, this would be a sweet deal!
Common Sense with Money has a post about free Airwick Luminair flameless candles here. These would make great little add-on gifts or stocking stuffers.
Hope these work for you! Also, to let you know, there is a website called A Full Cup that has a Target printable coupon generator, that lets you save some paper when printing Target printable coupons. Go here to check it out. And don't forget that Target store coupons can be combined with manufacturer coupons to get some really good deals. My store used to give me a hard time about this, so I tend to go to the youngest cashiers available, it sounds terrible to say, but the young ones actually tend to listen and say "I'll try it" while the older ones just want to argue. But it does work!
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Ever seen those big Redbox movie rental kiosks in your grocery store? My Acme definitely has one, but apparently they are every where, including (in some areas) Walmarts, Walgreens & McDonald's (the geniuses at McD's are responsible for creating Redbox).
WELL...I see a lot of blogs posting Redbox codes every Monday for a free rental. This has never seemed convenient for me, as we probably won't watch the movie on Monday and then I will get charged $1 a day until I bring the movie back. What I just learned from The Centsible Sawyer is that there are other codes frequently popping up that can be used any night of the week. She also has some codes on her site for free movies at Walmart on Sundays. Check out her post about Redbox here.
I'm not sure if I'll actually start using this soon, since I already use Netflix and have a lot of 'shows' on my DVR. But I think it's good to know about the free code site in the event any of us have a movie fix, it might as well be free!
Friday, December 5, 2008
First, if you are new to working deals at Acme, please read the background info on one of my earlier deals posts. This will explain how the coupons double & how to print two copies of the printable coupons.
The deals are still pretty slim. Here is what I see:
Lean Cuisine & Stouffer's Red Box- All 50% off.
Buy any two Pepperidge Farm Holiday Crackers (2 for $5) get a free 26 oz. Swanson Cooking stock ($2.99 value) when you use your Supercard. If you have a coupon for Swanson stock, use it and the coupon value will be applied towards your total
Antioch Stuffed Chicken Breast single serve sale for $1 each
Thomas English Muffin twin packs are on sale for $1.99
Deals using printable coupons and regular coupons:
In the Acme Big Book circular (the monthly book) there is a coupon for Prima Familia Italian Meatballs, buy one get two free.
On the front page of this week's circular is a coupon for buy one get two free Hormel Black Label Bacon.
There is a coupon in the Big Book for 15 bottles of POWERade or POWERade Zero for $10 (a savings of $5). There is also a coupon on the last page of this week's circular for a free 24-pack of Dasani water when you purchase 10 bottles of POWERade. Use them both and get 15 bottles of POWERade and 24 bottles of Dasani for $10.
Progresso classic soups are on sale for $1 each. Use the $1 off 2 or $2 off 4 coupon here to get them for $0.50 each.
Green Giant frozen boxed vegetables are on sale for $1 each. Use the $0.60 off 2 coupon here (they will double to $1.20) to get them for $0.40 each.
15.6-18 oz. General Mills cereals & Nature Valley granola bars are $2 each when you buy four. Not sure if Wheaties is included but there are $0.75 cents off (will double to $1.50) coupons here that would make them $0.50 a box. There are $1 off two General Mills coupons here and here. There are also $1 off three General Mills coupons in recent newspaper inserts.
Soy Joy bars are on sale for $1 each. Use the buy one get one free coupon from a recent insert to get them for $0.50 each.
Lysol cleaning products are on sale for $2.50 each. There are printables here for $0.50 (will double to $1) or $1 off. Get each Lysol product for $1.50.
I guess you can tell by that last one that the deals really aren't that spectacular. If I see something better in the store I'll update the post. If you see anything good, leave a comment. Thanks!! Love, Bay
Thursday, December 4, 2008
iHere are a few more websites that you may be interested in joining. I am a member of all of these and there aren't any referrals needed here, you just sign up.
Vocalpoint- I love Vocalpoint! You join, they mail you free things. Well, they also have a bunch of other activities and articles going on, but when they do have promotions they just up and mail you something free. I have received a free Venus Breeze razor, coupon packs for Starkist tuna & Del Monte fruit bowls, and just this week I got a little calendar/planner from Crest with coupons, including a coupon for a free Crest Weekly Clean toothpaste. You can sign up here.
Shespeaks- This site is another that aims to be a community for women, with polls, chats, etc. What is cool is that they claim to have special offers, coupons, and products to test out. I was just selected for my first product test & will be receiving some free Ghirardelli chocolate squares. You can sign up here.
House Party- I would love to have one of these! Will they ever pick me? lol...Maybe I'm not putting that I have enough friends to invite...Anyway, House Party is a site for different companies to promote their products by sending kits to people who pledge to host a party & invite all their friends. The host gets supplies to help throw the party & samples to give out/use at the party. There was one where you had to have an Xbox 360, and they sent out a movie from Netflix and a SceneIt game to use on the Xbox. If any of you are chosen to host a party, you better invite me! You can sign up here.
Hope you like them! Love, Bay
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Looks like some decent freebies are around again!
Get a Glad ForceFlex trash bags sample
Benefiber on-the-go samples are still available here
Free sample of Always Infinity
GoodNites Underpants is offering a free sample
Lysol is offering a free "Looking after you and your baby" booklet to mothers of babies 0-18 months. It probably also contains some coupons, but also after you sign up there is a link to Home Solutions where you can print some coupons right now.
Get a free sample of Black Truffle gourmet olive oil
Free Juicy Juice sippy cup when you sign-up here
Schick Quattro Titanium trimmer is still available
Free Sun-Maid recipe booklet
If you haven't signed up already, there are coupon and/or recipe booklets available from:
Home Made Simple (including a coupon for a free jet-dry)
Enjoy! Love, Bay
Five...five dollar...five dollar magazine subscriptions! Ok, I love that Subway jingle way too much! I look for excuses to say five dollars!
I think magazine subscriptions make great Christmas gifts, especially for those on your list that are far away (no shipping on your part!). Hearst magazines is offering a holiday special for $5 subscriptions to these magazines:
- Country Living
- Food Network magazine
- Good Housekeeping
- Harper's Bazaar
- House Beautiful
- Marie Claire
- O, The Oprah Magazine
- Popular Mechanics
- Smart Money
- Town & Country
For years I have heard people talk about Aldi, but I have never ventured into one. Recently, I found out that my friends Dylan & Stephanie really love Aldi. The fact that someone I know personally shopped there made me feel a little more open to trying it. After Dylan's whole-hearted endorsement, I finally went yesterday in the name of 'blog research'.
What is Aldi?
It is a discount grocery store that carries almost entirely generic products. They don't just take the 'no frills' attitude with the products, they are sparse with their features (no bakery, no deli, etc.) & even require you to put a quarter in the cart & bring your own bags. If no one told you to bring your own bags, ahem, you can buy them for a few cents each. I remember that paper bags were 6 cents each, because I thought I was buying three, but my cashier never charged for them. Oops!
Are the prices really that good?
Yes. The prices are very low! They aren't as low as combining a really good store sale with coupons, but they were very good everyday prices. For example, I always buy Berkeley & Jensen diapers (Bj's brand) that are 17 cents a diaper. That is my "cornerstone price" that I compare other deals and sales to. If a diaper sale doesn't work out to be cheaper than 17 cents a diaper, I don't bother, because I know that the everyday price at Bj's will beat the so-called deal. Here at Aldi's, their store brand diaper worked out to be 15 cents a diaper! There were a lot of other good prices for random things, like full-size frozen pepperoni pizzas for $2.49.
Am I going to give up Acme for Aldi?
Not at all. I think that I'll be sure to shop Aldi once and a while (especially for parties, there were tons of affordable chips, dips, cookies, frozen appetizers, etc. that beat what I could buy at Acme or Bj's any day--also staple items were very good prices), but I can usually do pretty well for my weekly trip going to Acme using my deals and coupons. For example, right now at Acme, boxes of Quaker instant oatmeal are on sale for $2.50 and I have a bunch of $1 off coupons. The price would be $1.50 for a box of Quaker oatmeal, and Aldi had their brand at $1.50 regular price. Now, you're saying, that's contradictory, why bother with the coupons in the first place? Well I get a lot of other great deals at Acme & I just can't stop shopping there for other stuff I regularly buy. While I was at Aldi I searched high and low for natural applesauce for the baby, and I couldn't find one variety that didn't contain high fructose corn syrup. I also only buy organic milk, it is just one of my preferences and even though Aldi's milk was awesomely cheap ($2.49 a gallon), I just couldn't buy it.
This is what I bought (and don't mind that it is super random) and the prices:
Diapers 40 pack - $5.99
3 frozen pizzas - $2.49 ea.
1 lb. frozen tilapia filets - $3.69
3 lbs. sweet potatoes - $1.29
2.5 lbs. bananas - $1.20
lunchmeat variety pack - $1.99
bacon - $2.29 (they actually had a ridiculous selection of bacon varieties, this one was a middle of the road choice)
1 lb. ground turkey - $2.49
instant oatmeal (to compare with Quaker, lol) - $1.49
stuffing mix - $0.79
2 cans mushrooms - $0.49 each
swiss cake rolls - $0.99
So just about $30 for all of that stuff.
Hopefully my review helped de-mystify the store for you if you never shopped there before. Aldi doesn't really deserve it's reputation as a "poor people's store" as the quality seems good and you could really do quite a bit of your regular shopping here and still not buy all processed foods. As a matter of fact, there is another blogger out there who calls herself The Aldi Queen, and she has a whole website devoted to menu plans using only ingredients found at Aldi's and her recipes look really good!
I stumbled upon this really great tutorial for how to recycle old magazines into homemade gift bows. This was perfect for me, because I had signed up for a free subscription to Elle Decor without realizing just how awful the magazine really is. I am not in the billionaire-NYC-decorator market, I guess. I even tried canceling the free subscription, because the heavy mag just lands right in the recycle pile, but no one really wants to take responsibility for the free subscription.
But this is a really cool use for recycling those pretty ads into something I can actually use for the holidays. So the ones in my picture look a little challenged, but I'm getting better. It's late! The big black one on the bottom was a Rolex ad, lol.
I just love wrapping gifts, so I have a feeling I'm going to be making a bunch of these for Christmas. Oh and they only cost about a penny for the paper fastener! A penny definitely works for me. Check out Works for Me Wednesday at Rocks in My Dryer!
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
My Christmas tree is up! (I will post a pic soon, because I know you want to see it, right?!) So now it really does seem like Christmas-time has started for me. I love everything about Christmas, especially giving (and wrapping, cause I'm a nerd) gifts. I am not so down with physically shopping for gifts. I just really can't stand going out and hunting for something, braving crowds, leaving my house. That kind of thing! A few of my girlfriends decided to stop swapping gifts years ago, because the whole, "I'm getting you a $25 gift, you get me a $25 gift, now let's swap" thing was getting old. Instead we vowed to get together for dinner or hang out in some way, since getting together is much more important. That has also fallen by the wayside and it's a shame!
Just recently a few of my old co-workers decided that in lieu of a lunch-time Christmas gift swap (where they're watching the clock and I'm half-paying attention, trying to feed Rayna) we are going to go out for a leisurely dinner! We are still swapping gifts, since these girls are shoppers ;) but I am really looking forward to the actual get-together. While gifts are great, make time to see your friends this Christmas.
I saw this video on the blog Like Merchant Ships and I thought it was really good. Now, I'm not anti-gift giving in any way, but I think it does have a pretty good message to keep the holiday in perspective:
Monday, December 1, 2008
First, if you are new to working deals at Acme, please read the background info on one of my earlier deals posts. This will explain how the coupons double & how to print two copies of the printable coupons.
There are sooo few deals, yet again. Here is what I see:
Simply Orange juice- 59 oz. carafes are on sale for $3. The family size carafe is 89 oz. on sale for $4.99. Get whichever size you want, it is pretty much the same price per ounce (it is $0.05 per ounce for the smaller size and $0.056 per ounce for the larger size.)
Red Baron 12" frozen pizzas are on sale for $4 each
41-50 ct. Acme Shrimp Ring is on sale for $4.99
3 lb. bag of Florida Tangerines are on sale for $2.99
3 lb. or larger packs of Boneless Chicken Breast are $1.88 lb.
Deals using printable coupons and regular coupons:
Quaker Instant Oatmeal is on sale for $2.50 each. There are $1 off coupons here, here and here that make them $1.50 each.
Progresso Traditional and Rich & Hearty Soups are on sale 4 for $6 (must buy 4!). Use the $2 off 4 cans coupon here to get them for $1 each.
Get a FREE 12-pack of Nestea Iced Tea 16.9 oz. bottles when you buy any 3 12-pack cans of Coca-Cola products. Use the coupon on page 6 of the circular to get the free 12 pack of Nestea. If you participate in My Coke Rewards you can also redeem 35 points for a "$1 off a 12-pack" coupon. It will generate a URL that you can print and hit the back button a few times to print again. (If that doesn't work for you, copy and paste the URL into a different browser). Redeem 70 points, print a total of 4 coupons, and save one for later.
Get a FREE 12-pack of 7-Up, A&W, Sunkist or Canada Dry cans when you buy any 3 12-packs for $3.33. That is four 12-packs of soda for $9.99. Use the coupon on page 6 of the circular.
This might be the only decent deal, if you really need some of these items:
Spend $20 in participating Proctor & Gamble products and receive a $5 off coupon for your next shopping order. You also will receive 5 free redbox movie rentals (which are right in the Acme). The P&G Brand saver coupon insert was just in this Sunday's paper, so there are a ton of coupons available for these items. There are too many participating items to mention here, but check the last page of your store circular, enter your zip code & view it online here.
One example scenario would be: (all coupons from the P&G insert in Sunday's paper)
- Buy One 8 pack of Duracell AA batteries at $5.99 (get an additional free 6.4 oz. Crest toothpaste, too, using the coupon at the bottom of the page!) use the $1.50 off coupon.
- Buy one DayQuil or NyQuil at $4.99, use the $1.50 off coupon.
- Buy one Gillette body wash at $4, use the $2 off coupon.
- Buy one Herbal Essences hair product at $2.99, use the $1 off coupon.
- Buy two 6.4 oz. Crest Toothpastes at 2 for $3, use the $1 off one coupon.
Hope you do well this week!
So this weekend Marc & I went on a little getaway with my brother and sister-in-law. We went to NYC to see comedian Jim Gaffigan, and ending up seeing some sites and eating some really great food!
Now we are home, of course, and I have a bit to catch up on. I will post the Acme deals today asap. I don't see any super fabulous Cyber Monday deals, but check out my post below about Mypoints, I think you'll like it!!
I am a member of about a million different kinds of websites, and I find that people do enjoy hearing about sites I use & checking them out for themselves. One website I think you may be interested in joining is Mypoints.
This is not some kind of program I barely use and am just hoping to earn some kind of referral credit. I have been a Mypoints member for 10 years! I couldn’t believe it when I got an “anniversary” email from them a few months ago, but it’s true because Mypoints has been good to me over the years. Some people dog it because it can be slow going, but I have been able to earn quite a few gift cards. I have their credit card, which automatically gives you a point per dollar. But, there are plenty of easy ways to earn points quickly. The first is they send quite a few emails, and when you click through the link you get 5 points instantly. Generally there is some type of offer to be had, like “click the link and get 5 points, join Netflix and get 2,000 points”, etc. There isn’t any obligation to join or buy anything, you can just score an easy five points.
When you do shop online, you can click through Mypoints and get several points per dollar. Sometimes there will be an order code, such as Overstock.com loves to offer Mypoints members points per dollar on a purchase as well as free shipping. Other times, you can click through the Mypoints site and use your own coupon codes, to “stack” the offers to your advantage. Example: Recently I ordered a gift from
They are constantly adding new participating merchants, like this week they added StubHub; earn 3 points per dollar spent at StubHub.
Once you have earned yourself points, you can redeem them for various rewards, mostly gift cards. One final thing that they’ve started recently was offering their own printable coupons (the same that you find on coupons.com), but they will give you 10 points for every coupon printed and redeemed, plus a 25 point bonus every month you redeem 5 or more coupons. If you’re going to use them anyway, you might as well get a little something extra for it.
You can check them out at www.mypoints.com. If you would like to have me send you a referral email so you can sign up and I get credit, just leave me your email in a comment or send me an email and I’ll send it to you!
Friday, November 28, 2008
Yup! All of that was completely f-r-e-e. Yes I paid an actual $2 in real money, but I had walked in with $38.95 in ecbs, and I left with $43.89! Even the Whitman's sampler was "free" because it was on sale for $3.99, I had a $2 coupon from a really old insert (like from March or May or something! lol) and then the overage from my other products with coupons covered it! If you haven't gone to CVS yet, your store may still have some things available for free. Check the post here to get the scoop.
There are quite a few CVS stores in my area, and I chose to go to one a little further from my house, because it is usually better stocked and has friendlier employees. I also think the employees at my local store hide the free items or get them for themselves because they are immediately all gone. So anyway, I arrived at the good CVS 5 mins. before 8 and there were already 3 other people waiting to get in! I couldn't believe it. These were real, serious deal-getters like me. When they unlocked the doors we all went right for the razors, and it was funny, I said "Should we all just follow each other?" and everyone nervously chuckled like 'oh man I gotta get my stuff!' hehe. But it was all good. All of us got our stuff and it was like Christmas morning. We helped each other find things, we took turns working our transactions and the cashier loved it. Sigh. I wish this happened every time, but it sure made for a nice Thanksgiving morning of goodies. :)
Hope you had a great Thanksgiving & good luck to anyone who may be Black Friday shopping. I am not one for crowds so I will be right here at home. Cyber Monday might be the day for me.
Woohoo! I closed the comments down last night at midnight, and I used a number generator to pick the winner! Congratulations to MommyhoodIsThankless!
Thanks again for all of the entries!
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Hooray! Thanksgiving is almost here, and things are finally getting back to normal here at my house. I would be very remiss if I didn't give you a link to the Super-Awesome CVS deals that will be available in your store *tomorrow*. Yes, I will be going to CVS bright & early on Thanksgiving Day to nag all of my free, and more than free, stuff!! Money Saving Mom has the scoop on all of the goodness, here.
And Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
It is because a tornado hit my kitchen!! Well, that's what it looks like right? I mean there is a filthy floor, a filthy Phillies rally towel (?!), garbage, spices, a ton of misplaced items...all because my refrigerator broke. Again.
Marc and I remodeled the kitchen just before getting married a few years ago, and one of our prized items was the huge stainless steel side-by-side refrigerator we bartered for at the Sears outlet for HOURS, to get for $800. A few years later, just a few months ago, the freezer flat out died and all my items defrosted. The fridge side quickly followed suit. The warranty had JUST expired, and it took two repairman trips and $400 to repair the fridge!!!
Well, the first reason I have been post-lite lately is because Marc was out of town for a business trip in Baltimore. I didn't really think I should mention that kind of thing on here in advance because it would alarm my mom :). So all weekend while I'm here alone, there was a really obnoxious knocking sound coming from the kitchen, even waking me up in the middle of the night. I guess it was the reaper coming for my big ol' fridge (seriously, though, I wonder what it was? The fridge trying to give me an SOS?). So, at some point this afternoon, I opened the freezer to find all of my homemade baby food, ice cream, anything near the top, wasted. Of course, you-know-who has the worst memory, and forgot to put the fridge on the PSE&G repair contract. So no warranty, yet again. Ouch!!
You can imagine that all afternoon/evening I've been busy with the salvaging of food, getting rid of the clunker fridge, shopping for a new fridge, etc. Not fun! So I do hope you'll excuse me for a while while I clean up the aftermath.
And this weekend while I was attempting to hold down the fort, I never got around to doing the Acme deals...did anyone notice? I had looked through the circular and saw *nothing* worthy of note. So, I decided to skip it. Now you know. It is just one of those weeks! Can't wait for Thanksgiving!!
Monday, November 24, 2008
I had totally forgotten about this, whoops! To celebrate that Guns 'n Roses is actually coming out with a new album (I think you're 20 years late there, bud), Dr. Pepper is giving away a coupon for a free 20 oz. bottle. The thing is, it ends tonight at 6 PM EST.
Sign up here and they will send you a coupon by mail for a free bottle!
Oh and if you are having problems with their website (they have been super overloaded with this promo, apparently) you can call 1-888-DRPEPPER (1-888-377-3773) and request the coupon that way.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Last year around Christmastime was when I first got hooked on CVS. They had a phenomenon that was taking the world by storm: stackable coupons. Now, no one at CVS expressly said that they were stackable, but they didn't say they weren't either. There were internet printable coupons for $10 off a $50 purchase, all the way down to $2 off a $10 purchase. Combining all of these CVS $ off coupons, CVS store coupons, manufacturer coupons AND the Extra bucks program, made for some insanely killer deals that you just knew wouldn't last long.
Of course, that madness didn't last long, and now CVS doesn't put out anywhere near the amount of coupons that they used to. What they still do however, is have their awesome Extracare program. If you don't already have an Extracare card, you need to get yourself one asap! Not really because of their 2% back off all your purchases every quarter (which doesn't add up to too much for me), but because they give you your own "extracare coupons" at the end of transactions (which can be combined with manufacturer coupons to score you really good deals) and because you can earn Extracare bucks (ECBs) on certain products every week and month that come out to be totally free.
Now, the whole CVS program is not new to many of you, but I know a lot of my readers (especially my own dear family) do not take advantage of it the way they could! I will not go through a huge long tutorial here, especially since almost every other 'frugal mom' type website has her own tutorial. There are good ones here and here.
Once you get into CVS deals you can nab stuff like I did here:
This week there is a Complete contact solution deal where you spend $8.99 out of pocket and get $8.99 ecbs back = free! The limit per Extracare card was five! So, how could I turn down five free bottles of solution? That is like a year's supply for me (and they don't expire until late in 2010!) I also was PAID to get two of the Maybelline mineral makeups: they were on sale for $8.99 each, I had a $3 off coupon and a $2 off coupon, and each one gave a full $8.99 in ecbs, so I got $5 worth of ecbs, free! The free toothpaste is a monthly deal and the store I stopped today actually had some!! I missed out on the Duracell battery deal they had last week, so I stocked up today on the Energizer deal. I got two mega-packs of AA & AAA batteries for $22, used two $1 off coupons and got $10 in ecbs...my total for 32 batteries? $10. Oh, and the formula I just needed ;)
NOW, I have a ton of ecb's for next time, and apparently my next time will be Thanksgiving! The CVS Black Friday deals were "leaked" and there is a bunch of stuff FREE after ecbs (toothpaste, Aussie products, universal remotes, energy drinks, razors, etc.)! So get started if you haven't yet...'tis the season to get hooked!!
Friday, November 21, 2008
Ok, so that's not a turkey, but I liked the picture! lol... All over the web right now, everyone is in a flurry about Thanksgiving and what to make/how to make it easier or more affordable. There is a good series on Money Saving Mom called "Thanksgiving on a Budget" which has ideas for decorating and food on the cheap.
I have to say, I have never cooked a turkey (even though I will need to learn, with my Acme free turkey in the freezer!) and my brother has cooked our Thanksgiving meals for years now. Since my bro and his wife host it at their home now, all I have to do is show up and bring a couple of things. So I'm not really an authority on preparing Thanksgivings, but there is one thing that I was requested to bring (aside from a vegetable), my deviled eggs. (or "angel eggs" if you grew up in my kind of family)
They seem to be either a 'love it or hate it' type thing. My sister is really finicky about deviled eggs and insists on no mustard (even though I think the filling is way better with mustard!). I do sneak relish into mine though. (Again, she doesn't read my blog, so she won't know! lol) So my filling is usually just mayonnaise, a little relish, salt and pepper and the paprika on top.
Then there is the question of to pastry bag the filling, or just spoon it on. I have to say the whole pastry tip thing is a HUGE waste of time, and no one really cares anyway. Also, then you have to really work the filling to be lump-free or your tip will get clogged every few seconds. So I say, do not use the pastry bag. Get real people! ;)
I saw Paula Deen one time make deviled eggs with bacon inside. Yum! Which made me wonder if I should try a new recipe this year. In searching, I found that there is a whole website devoted to Deviled Eggs. Check it out! The classic recipe is most like what I make.
And what to do with all the leftover eggs? Chop 'em up and you have egg salad for sandwiches. They actually are a very frugal little appetizer.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
What is up with freebies lately? It seems like they all dried up at one time. Here's what I can find this week:
Get a free pencil with a Digilake logo
This promotional compressed t-shirt expands in water
Mivodesign is offering a free utility knife
Score a free Nikon camera strap
Get a sample pack of Ty-Rap cable ties
Sign up here for a free Bertolli Premium pasta sauce sample...I have requested this before and nothing yet, but it is worth a try
Cutter & Buck is offering a free luggage tag
Sign up for Pillsbury's emails and get a coupon booklet with $10 in coupons. Betty Crocker is doing the same thing here.
Let's all hope for some good stuff to be added soon! Love, Bay
I can't say hooray enough! For quite a long time, I have been working on the above cross stitch. When my sister found out she was having a boy, I knew the name Noah was a top contender for the baby. I wanted to make something for him, and since I like cross-stitch, I researched options. Most patterns were too cartoony, pastel or just not my style. When I found this pattern ("Promises Kept" by Dimensions) I knew that it was perfect. What I didn't take into consideration was that it was way beyond my skill level at the time. I tried my best to have it done by the shower, and then by the time he was born, and then...FLASH FORWARD, he is now three!!! THREE!!
And yes, this is somewhat embarrassing! But last week while I was doing the "Making your home a haven" challenge, I knew that I wanted to work on this project until it was completed. I broke down the remaining pieces into little "doable" chunks, like 'complete eyes on outer left animals', etc. (The eyes, or the french knots, are what was out of my skill level. Stitching is stitching, but I can't do those knots for the life of me. I ended up substituting knots with small stitches for the eyes).
So now, it is done!!! I pressed it and found a framer nearby who will have it ready for me to present to the family on Thanksgiving. (Note to family, don't tell Jess! She doesn't read my blog anyway, lol)
So if my blogging fell by the wayside for a few days, now you know why!
And for my friend Yukline, here is a close-up of the berries on the tree that I was working on when we went to Las Vegas...2 years ago! ;)
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
I was thinking about what I was going to write in this WFMW post and I was stuck between two websites. Then I realized that hey, I have already mentioned Roboform & Paperback Swap…am I addicted to the internet? Is that all that works for me?
And then I thought,
who cares of course I’m not. But there really are two cool things that are especially working for me at the moment:
Pandora- Pandora is an internet radio site, where you just quick type in your favorite song or band and it will play similar tunes. What has impressed me about Pandora is that, unlike other online radio gadgets, this one doesn’t play some really random, totally off-the-wall choices. It claims to use music genomes (?) to play appropriate tunes. So far, I love it. I have the Beatles station, the Fleetwood Mac station, the Joan Baez station…and I just realized that I sound thirty years older than I am.
Etsy- This one probably isn’t new to you. I have been suggesting Etsy to crafty people for a while. “Oh wow, your homemade widgets are awesome! No, don’t sell on eBay, sell on Etsy.” Things like that. This Christmas season, however, I plan on doing much more shopping from the comfort of my couch, and I checked Etsy out for some unique gift ideas. I’m hooked! I love the homemade shirts, bags cuter than you could ever find in stores, earrings that real people make. You might think that cool, homemade stuff is going to be more expensive that what you’d find at the mall. Instead, the prices I’ve found at Etsy are way better than at the stores which I would be shopping. Another cool thing about buying straight from a real person is that if you want something in a different color, just ask, and the artist might be able to make it special for you/your gift.
So those are two quick sites that work for me. I hope you like them, too. To see what works for other people, check out WFMW at Rocks in my Dryer.
While you are here, check out my new Tastefully Simple giveaway!