Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas at the Castle

Did the Christmas thing this morning. Now Dh is watching Hogan's Heroes and Jacob is playing out in the yard. Weather is nice here. I made a big meal yesterday so just leftovers today. I have stuff to do today. I got an email saying Walgreens is open and Christmas is 50% off.

I will be busy over the next week or if I don't blog that is why. Cuz I have people to see and places to go. Now I got laundry to do.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Just one more day Santa!

Then you can take your annual well-deserved vacation with your bird(s) to your favorite clothing-optional resort and let it all hang out.

Speaking of birds, I was at the grocery store today and in the meat department they had put those cheapy peel & stick bows on all the turkeys. I've gotten some bad gifts over the years, but if I ever get a turkey as a gift - especially a turkey that I have to cook - someone would be headed to the doghouse. (Getting a free turkey from an employer doesn't count tho.)

p.s. Picture is courtesy of my Stampin' Up/scrapbooking obsessed friend Donna who forwards me all kinds of crap.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Double & Triple Coupons at Shoppers Food Warehouse

I had intended to have a relaxing day at home today, catching up on reading the newspapers and maybe wrapping some presents. Well when I opened today's newspaper I saw that Shoppers Food Warehouse was having double & triple coupons again thru Wednesday.

Then I spotted all the deals that CVS was having for free items (using ECBs - Extra Care Bucks). So I spend all afternoon at the stores.

At CVS I ended up with 4 Listerines, 2 nailpolishes and 1 Ecedrin for free. I planned on hitting another CVS for the items that my store was out of, but never got around to it. I spent a lot of time at Shoppers Food Warehouse.

Once again I had a cartload of stuff. I had my DH's cellphone on me, (not my own with the good camera) so I didn't get a pic of the full cart. And too lazy to photograph it at home.

My total before coupons was $231.58 and after coupons it was $76.71. For a savings of $154.87

At the end, the cash register spit out a coupon for ".50 off my next purchase" but it was going to expire 1/4/09. Since I wasn't sure if I'll be back to that grocery store soon, after I put the groceries in the car, I went back to the store to use that .50 coupon.

I picked up a package of vanilla creme cookies for Jacob and went thru the self-checkout lane. I really hate those self check-out lanes, especially since they aren't easy when it comes time to redeeming coupons. Well a cashier had to help me with it and ended up paying 0.00 for the cookies.

I really should be happy that I "saved" $154 today. But I'm irritated with myself. After I got home and was putting away the food, I spotted a coupon to save $10 off a $50 order at Shoppers Food Warehouse that I had stuck on the refrigerator door. Ugghghgh...I hate when that happens!

New Years Resolution for 2009: Get coupons organized.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

My Vintage Elf Kneehugger Collection

I finally put up our tree today and got out my elf collection. My latest elf (he's in the last row center - the one with the red shiny legs) was just purchased at a thrift in early December. There's a few imposters in the bunch, like the Santa and the Pez Elf.

My tree is bare bones really. I just didn't feel like digging out all the ornaments in all their little boxes this late in the game. Maybe next year I'll be on the ball when it comes time for Christmas. Last Christmas at my thrift I bought a bunch of Christmas trolls. I don't know where they are at. They have to be around here someplace. I know I didn't put them with the rest of the Christmas stuff.

And I was late again with mailing out Christmas cards. I got the handmade one from my friend Donna, so I have to post it. I think I've posted the last few cards she has sent me here on the blog. Which reminds me, she gave me a bunch of Stampin' Up stamps to sell on ebay for her and I haven't done it yet.

Almost forgot to mention it, but I actually have 2 trees up. Earlier in the week I was at VV and bought a bunch of stuff, including a small fiberoptic tree for $3. And I also bought 2 pairs of Uggs clogs for $3 a pair.

Today was the first yardsale in months and months that I did not go yardsaling (I don't think there were any).

Friday, December 19, 2008

Holiday Countdown - 4 days til Festivus!

Only 4 more days til Festivus. I found this video today, it's all about the Festivus airing of grievances and about 50 seconds into it, you'll see one of the grievances is that someone smells like a thrift store. I am glad I don't have to shop at stinky thrift stores. My stores don't stink.

Update on JC Penneys, I had to go back today and the person next to me had a $10 coupon plus a 15% off coupon and the cashier told them they could only use one or the other. So it seems Penneys finally figured out they were losing a lot of money accepting both discounts on one transaction.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Bought an Ugly Santa Today. An expensive Ugly Santa

While the cats away, the mice go shopping. My DH has been in Vegas with the guys for almost the past week, so while the cats away, I go shopping. And shopping. It's almost like a vacation for me too, let the laundry pile up, who cares. I get total control of the remote control. I can make yummy peanut butter, jelly and Frito sandwiches for dinner if I want (don't knock it until you've tried it - delish). But like I said earlier, I couldn't taste anything for several days so I didn't bother making food that I couldn't taste. Back to reality and dirty laundry - DH comes home tonight.

Anyhow today I found this ugly Santa at Smile and thought it could be something my mother may like. But then I did a little research and found the company online and see that if you were to buy one, it would be $92, since its made out of pewter by some artsy company. Mom is not getting an ugly Santa from me this year. The price sticker said $2, but Christmas was half-off, so it was $1.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Yardsale Buys from last weekend

I never got around to blogging on Monday or Tuesday, so better late than never. On Saturday, I bought the stuff in the first pic ($5 new bathroom caddy, $3 mirror, $5 vintage endtable, .50 Milkbone toy and .50 Happy Birthday bowling pin.

Then on Sunday I found a very rare Sunday only yardsale and bought: $1 Calvin Klein sweater (possibly for DH), $1 Catchphrase game (the game isn't what I thought it was, so I will just re-sell it at my next yardsale), $2 Scene It game, and got a free teddy bear.

Here's a Before and After of my mirrors. The new mirror replaced one at the bottom of a staircase. I bought the old one with the fake stained glass at a yardsale years ago. Funny thing is, I think I paid $3 for that one too. I'm going to put it back in the yardsale stream in spring of '09.

The past few days I've been having some sort of cold/allergy problem. Anyhow my question is, why hasn't someone invented a diet pill that will just temporarily deaden your sense of taste/smell? I've not been able to taste or smell food for several days now and it makes me not want to eat.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

My freezer is beautiful

I did manage to find a few yardsales yesterday (and even one today!) but majority of my time yesterday was spent defrosting that beast of a freezer that's in the garage. You wouldn't think of defrosting a freezer as a good workout, but it is. I am sore today. Not kidding. Must have been all that bending and squatting and loading and reloading the empty freezer with pans of boiling hot water. And emptying buckets of chunks of ice and water etc. It was a good 6 hour job from start to finish. I even used one of those little electric freezer defrosting gadgets. I probably needed 10 of them.

But the freezer is beautiful now. My Cool Whips (all 4 of them) are all stacked nicely together. I have 12 packages of Perdue boneless chicken breasts, 2 turkey breasts, 1 spiral sliced ham and lots of blueberries (bought on sale at .99 a pint) and frozen veggies. Everything was bought on sale of course. Gonna eat up that ham soon. Like next week.

Well I think I learned my lesson about defrosting in a more timely manner. Could one of you remind me, say like in 5 years give or take, that I need to do it again?? :) It normally stays pretty semi-frost free, but what happens is, Jacob will go in and take out a popsicle and he's not real good about checking to make sure it's closed tightly. When it's left ajar, the ice accumulates quickly. So now I am pretty OCD about checking it every night to make sure it's closed good.

Early this morning was my special shopping opportunity at Staples to shop amongst other high-ranking premier customers such as myself. They had free donuts. I bought my youngest niece a Christmas present. I won't say what it is since I know she reads my blog from time to time (will post a pic after Xmas), but it's very ugly (in my opinion) and it's big and it was only .50 (on clearance). I think there's a chance she may like it. A slim chance, but a chance is a chance!

Will post pics of my yardsale buys tomorrow. I am DVR-ing Survivor, so I want to go watch it now.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Peach Pie, hold the mold...

I did a bunch of shopping today and went to the library. Our library now rents out Playstation 3 games for free. Anyhow I was at Giant and I always have to check out the day-old (or week old??) cart and I spotted the above peach pie, with a big glob of mold right there in the center. Ewww... I didn't bother telling anyone, since the day-old cart is near the deli and the deli guys were busy and the bakery is in another part of the store. So...buyer beware when shopping.

I'm actually pretty obsessive/compulsive about dates on things at the grocery store. I pretty much check the dates on nearly everything I buy (things like canned foods, cereals, pasta etc). Did you know there is even dates printed on 2-liter bottles of soda? The other week my OCD was temporarily in remission and I forgot to look for the dates and I accidently bought "old" soda. I knew the minute I tasted it, something wasn't right. Sure enough, when I checked the date, it was very near the "sell by" date. I took it back (I had bought four 2-liters) to be exchanged for fresh soda. For instance, now the 2-liters I am buying have a Feb.09 date on them.

My deal today came was at CVS. This week they have Maybelline lipsticks - all Buy 1 Get 1 Free. A few weeks ago, there were coupons in the newspaper for $4 off any Maybelline lipstick (I had several coupons). I got a bunch of lipstick for free today. I may go back tomorrow since I have more coupons.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Better than Yardsale Prices

I am a #1 fan of yardsales, so it pains me to say that a retail store has better prices than at a yardsale. But I will somehow find a way to get over it.

I used my $10 JC Penneys coupon today and walked out with a pair of $24.99 jeans (for Jacob) for only .66 In addition to the $10 off coupon, I used a 15% off certificate I got from filling out a Penneys survey about my last shopping trip there (About two weeks ago I bought a pair of $5 clearance Converse All Star shoes which I intend to put on ebay). The jeans were on sale for half off ($12.49) and the cashier took 15% off that amount rather than taking 15% off $2.49 Actually I think it was how the computer in the cash register processed the discounts.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Deals on buying Gift Certificates

Some regular retail stores/restaurants have been offering deals on buying gift cards. We eat occasionally at Moe's Southwest Grill - so we bought the $25 gift card and got a $5 coupon free. And the other day I bought a $50 Best Buy gift card (actually two $25 gift cards) at Food Lion and got a $10 free coupon to use at Food Lion. I may go back and buy a few more, DH likes to shop at Best Buy so I know they wouldn't go to waste.

I gotta get to work on that stupid freezer. My mom ordered Omaha Steaks for us as a Christmas gift, so I better make some room in the freezer.

Yardsale Pictures - and Weekend Update with a Santa Critique

Here are some pics from the indoor yardsale I did on Saturday. And below is a pic of the stuff I was selling. At the end I packed up a bunch of stuff to take to Smile. I'm generous that way, when I can't sell something at a yardsale, I donate my yardsale duds. (But a lot of people do that, I always see random yardsale stickers on stuff at the thrift).

One of the jewelry sellers had a unique way of dealing with customers:

It was a busy weekend as far as seeing Santa. Did a Christmas Walk thing on Saturday night and saw a boat parade. (It's where boat owners decorate their boats with Christmas lights and they sail around).

We saw two Santas on Saturday night and one on Sunday. Is it me or does this Santa look a little on the creepy side? I don't ever remember seeing Santa with bling before.

Then on Sunday we saw another Santa who must have forgotten his real black boots at the North Pole because he just had little cheesy black plastic baggies over regular people shoes. I believe that is a fashion don't. But at least he was jollier looking than the first Santa.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Tip: cheap way to double the size of freezer - defrost it

My freezer needs defrosting bad. Real bad. It accidently popped open a few times and therefore, the ice really built up. It's our spare freezer, not the refrigerator/freezer that is in the kitchen. I think I will plan to defrost it soon - especially now that the garage is cold and I have a big box I can store the food in temporarily. I hate defrosting it though. Such a pain - that's why I've been putting it off. But on the bright side, it should double the available space.

I still have pics from last Saturday's yardsale to put up but don't feel like doing it now.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

I sense a trip to JC Penney's and Staples in my future....

I got some good mail today. One of those great $10 off $10 JC Penneys coupons. A few people have asked about them so I'm posting a pic of what it looks like. I used to have a Penney's credit card but haven't use it in years (and I may have even cancelled it).

And a $10 off $20 coupon to use at Staples one day next week when they are having special shopping hours set aside for just "Premier Members Only", so I won't have to shop amongst the public riff-raff. But I will probably end up doing pre-shopping anyway at Staples this week, to figure out what I want to buy when I go back on the special shopping day. The invitation says its a special opportunity to shop for MP3 Players, Ipods and cameras. I'll probably buy bubblewrap.

Yardsale Buys from today

Well I had my yardsale today, and managed to buy a little bit here and there.

.10 each snacks
$1 some lotion gift set
$1 2-pack DVD of Three Stooges. Will be a gift for my brother. (I don't think he reads my blog.)
$1 Fiber Choice Weight Management (new, unopened). Yes, I buy my fiber at a yardsale and I don't care who knows it. I've had this stuff before and it tastes really good. I'm too cheap to buy it at $12-$15 a bottle. I don't think the "weight management" part of it works though...
$1 blue vibrating squishy pillow. Probably for Jacob.
.25 wooden outlet cover
.50 Blue starter jacket for jacob
$1 Star Wars Darth Vader helmut thing. I have another one around here somewhere. I should put on ebay before Halloween next year.
.25 Penn. Dutch cookbook
.25 DVD Dog Sitter. Supposed to entertain your dog while you are away from home.
$1 Wooden slat window blinds. I am curtain/window dressing impaired so I hope this is not difficult to install. It's Fauxwood - which I know "faux" is just another name for "Fancy/Expensive/Fit For a Queen" :)

I will post more yardsale pics another time.

I meant to post this pic the other day but I forgot. At Smile I bought two plastic Adirondack chairs for $3 each. They look better in the pic than real life - they need a good cleaning.

Friday, December 05, 2008

My last yardsale of 2008

I signed up to sell at an indoor yardsale tomorrow. It's only $5 a space. I should be in bed now. It's supposed to be in the 20's tonight so I'm sure it will be chilly in the morning trucking all my junk into the hall. My car is all loaded up and ready to go. One of my yardsale buddies is going to be selling stuff too so that will be good (we can help each other out, watch each other's tables while we shop etc). Will take pics.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Someone is looking into my future.....

I spotted this book today at Smile and had to buy it (.25). The woman who saved things. I am afraid to see how it all ends. She probably gets buried under a ton of books when a bookshelf collapses on her, and although one of her 108 cats manages to dial 911, it's still too late.

And since its that shopping season, I figured you may want a copy or two from Amazon so I am providing a link for your shopping pleasure. This book ranges in price from $4.47 for a used one to $600 for a new one. I'd go for the new one if I was you.

If you don't believe me, here is the list of sellers who have this book, including the $599 and $600 version The Woman Who Saved Things

p.s. Oops, a small clarification - the $599 version is not a new version, it is used but in "very good" condition. aye yi yi.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

How does K-mart stay in business?

I can't understand how K-mart is still in business when so many other stores are going under. The Kmart nearest to me is like a blast from the past, even though I know it was built in the 90's. Within a half-mile of this store, we have a Super Walmart and Target. Corporate must just have given up on this store. There is a K-mart near my mom's which isn't half-bad, so I know they all aren't as crappy as mine.

I went to it today since I saw their ad that said they were having a double coupon week up to $2 (for example: a $2 coupon was worth $4)

Here is what I bought:

And what I paid: $3.43

Which I paid for with a gift card. A couple of Christmas's ago, Jacob received a gift that he already had, so I returned it and got a gift card.

I should have paid more than $3.43, but due to the cashier's ineptness, that's all I was charged. The coupons were doubled, then the cashier input them again. As I said here before, it's not my job to tell the cashier how to do their job. If they don't know what they are doing, they should get more training or call over a supervisor. To be honest, when I saw the cashier monkeying around with the coupons, I expected the cash register drawer to pop open and get handed a bunch of money. That wouldn't have surprised me.

As I was waiting in line (had to wait a long while to check out because people ahead of me were trying to buy stuff that didn't have a UPC code on them) I saw this display of magazines. Several were weekly magazines with November 10th dates on them. I told you it's like going back in time.

Speaking of the stuff without UPCs, the people were trying to buy garden supplies (probably leftover from the summer), they left without buying the items because it was too much of a hassle to wait.

I also looked at the make-up since I have some Revlon and Covergirl coupons and saw this display of nail polish. What a mess - who would buy that? The display has several spots where people tried it out. And now the stuff is so old the nail polish is separating.

Even though I got a deal today because of the inept cashier, to quote the wise Rainman, "Kmart sucks".