Saturday, April 25, 2015

Super Savings Saturday Part 2: Rummage Sale

Rummage sale season has started up here. For over 15 years, I've enjoyed visiting rummage sales. Besides the eclectic collection of items, the people watching can be just as exciting!

Because of the size of my city and my dislike of driving, I stick with sales within a few miles of my house. I also mostly stick with large sales, like those at churches or schools. This is because there is generally a better selection, decent parking, and I feel like it's safer.

Today I went to a sale at one of those mega church type of places, at their activity building. I've gone to their sale for about seven or eight years. Their sale is once per year, starts early in the morning and has tons of items. And, bonus, it's inside, so if it's cold and rainy like today, it's not uncomfortable to shop.

I also like their prices. Clothing was $2 for a bag, and the other stuff is pretty much negotiable, especially if you're buying a large lot of items.

I was there for about 45 minutes and I got:
50 R.L.Stine "Goosebumps" novels for my 8 year old - when she's done reading them, she'll donate them to her school's trade-in library or give them to her friends
A bag of yarn, two crochet hooks and a crochet amigurumi book
One bag of women's clothes, which included a hooded Ohio State University sweatshirt (my last one got all messed up last winter), one pair of shorts and one sweater
One bag of kid's clothes, which included six pairs of shorts, one fleece lined hooded vest (my 8 year old loves it), one pair of jogging pants and one t-shirt
One large hamper
One new pair of ladies leather flats
One pair of leather driving gloves

I spent $20 for all of that.

I was happy to shop at the sale by myself. Even so, I didn't sort through the huge mounds of adult clothing. There wasn't much for kids' clothes. I only glanced at the toys, just to ascertain that there weren't any Legos. All of my items fit within the hamper.

Also today, I dropped off two huge bags of crafty supplies at the craft store exchange room and swapped them for 1/3 of a bag of items I will use. I really like that swapping room!

Super Savings Saturday: Kroger, Target, Meijer

Target:
2 pencil holders $.30 each
2 deodorant 3.99 each, -2 x $2/1 manufacturer's coupons, 2 x $1/1 Target coupons and 25% Cartwheel discount
4 bags birdseye frozen veggies clearance 1.08, used 4 x $1/1 peelies
Paid $1.71.

I returned later in the week and got 4 bags of corn for $.02 after clearance and coupons, 2 more deodorant and 4 dish soap.

Kroger:
bacon, 2 packs butterball sausage, 3 Always, 2 Olay facial care, 1 lipton sparkling tea (free Friday download offer), Starbucks K-cups 3.15 manager's special. I paid $12.70.

Meijer:
Kraft chunk cheese, I can't believe it's not butter, country crock margarine, bananas, milk, bread, buns, strawberries, pantyliners, hair brush, string cheese, a pair of girl's shoes on clearance for $6 and a $5/1 mPerk came off, plus tons of blueberries $1 per pack!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Book Review: God Bless Our Country

The Berenstain Bears God Bless Our Country is a children's paperback book that presents a little story about Independence Day.

In this book, kids learn about what the country's birthday means, how the nation got its independence and what we do to celebrate it. There are also some stickers and a little question and answer session with the brother and sister bear at the end of the book.

My two year old and four year old were drawn to the book and liked looking at the pictures and listening to the story. This book would have been below the level of my eight year old, although the book says it is for kids aged 4 to 8. I think this would be a nice intro to what Independence day is and perhaps kids would enjoy a read of it each year before the annual parade, fireworks and other festivities.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for writing an honest review. I did not receive any other compensation.

Book Review: Better Than Before

Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives by Gretchen Rubin is a self help book that aims to help the reader with the transformation of negative habits into positive ones that help us work toward our goals.

The author isn't a psychologist, or a psychiatrist or a physician, which actually makes her more realistic and credible in this situation. I felt like this book was easy to read and insightful. This book is not at all preachy and does not take a holier than thou type of attitude.

This book covers some of the most common habits many of us have, such as procrastinating or indulging in too much junk food. I think this would do well when combined with a more psychology or medically oriented book about decision making or nutrition, to sort of balance out the technical side of changing one's way of thinking.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for writing an honest review. I did not receive any other compensation.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Book Review: Finding Me

Finding Me is a novel by Kathryn Cushman that delves into a woman's previously unknown family history. I'm not typically one to jump into a fiction book, but this story is easy to get into. The characters are well developed and you get just enough of their back story to understand their personalities but not enough so as to bore you with the details.

The book holds the reader's interest throughout, as there are a few twists and turns that I didn't anticipate. It's easy to put yourself in the main character's shoes and think about what you would do if you found out what she learned.

This would make a great read for a vacation or a lazy weekend at home.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for writing an honest review. I did not receive any other compensation.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Super Savings Saturday: Meijer, Giant Eagle, Kroger and Target

Meijer:
Scotch Expressions tape $1, buy 10 get 11th free, used $1/1 coupons = 48 for free!
4 bags apples $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free
bag carrots $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free
2 bags spinach $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free
4 shredded cheese $2 each, used 2 x $1/2 peelies and $1/$6 cheese purchase coupon
buns $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free
orange juice $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free, used $1 off any refrigerated juice coupon =free
bayer aspirin 2.19, -$1/1 manufacturer's coupon and -$1 off any pain relief store coupon
broccoli crowns $1 each, buy 10 get 11th free
half watermelon 3.37 -free $3 in produce when you spend $75
cereal 1.50 manager's special -$1 off any cereal store coupon
5 smart balance cooking spray $1.99 each -$1 off each mPerk
3 foil 1.29 each
3 wax paper 1.39 each
2 tide 4.49 each, -2 x $3/1 any tide pods mPerk
I paid $25.52.

Giant Eagle: I got 3 soup, 11 band-aids and 3 first aid bags free with coupons. I just had to pay tax of $1.54.

Kroger: I found some close-out deals and manager's specials, including $1.99 gallon milk, .30 cookie cutter, 1.59 cutting board, 2.15 Starbucks K-cups (after $1/1 coupon), Huggies and Luvs diapers for $1 to $2 per bag after manager's special and coupons, free Easter candy after coupons and I got my free Friday download item. I was thrilled about the diapers, as I found lots in my two year old's size!

Target:
Cat litter .49 each after cartwheel, Target coupon and store coupon. I got 4 and donated them to the cat shelter. I also got some Easter clearance candy with coupons, a pair of pants for my son, some crackers, first-aid gauze, anti-itch cream and a disposable razor.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Book Review: God Made You Special

God Made You Special is a Berenstain Bears book written by Mike Berenstain. This book is for kids age 4 to 8.

The story within the book is of everyone's favorite bears. The characters explain that Tommy, who is playing in a baseball game, has his own way of doing things that might not make a lot of sense to anyone else. Near the end of the story, one of the other bears just can't figure out what the deal is with Tommy. One of the adults explains that we're all different and that we all have special attributes that make us unique. It's okay to not be the same as everybody else.

I feel like this is an important lesson for all of us, including us parents as we read the book along with our kids.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for writing an honest review. I did not receive any other compensation.