Well, I'm not a super genius, but I'm pretty sure a Grinch from the Post Office stole my mom's gift cards that she sent in the mail.
On Monday, I received the following notice from the post office. We became suspicious when we discovered my mom's card to my uncle also received damage.
Then, on Wednesday, I received a second notice concerning another damaged card from my mom.
The notice I received Wednesday blamed "poor packaging" for the damage, but my mom had sealed it on all sides with tape. And you don't have to look that hard to realize the envelope had been clean cut.
So, here's the lowdown. My mom sent four cards... three of them had damage. My uncle lives in Missouri, and I am in North Carolina. If I had to guess, I'd say the source of the problem comes from my parents' post office.
My mom went to complain since she lost about $150 worth of gift cards in the mail. The person there said, "Oh, we had a lot of complaints on that last year." What?! Anyway, my mom said she filled out some paperwork and may have to go through a dead letter center to see if her stuff ended up there.
Has anyone gone through this before? And successfully recollected their goodies?
I don't care that my dog missed out on a treat or that my husband and I didn't get our gift cards I am upset that my mom and dad got stressed over it and lost out on their money. They're so close to retiring, and I hate to see their money thrown away. It's certainly disheartening.
At least the thieves left their card in tact!
I've never had so much fun buying meat at the grocery store. I mean, wouldn't you be a little excited to get veal for 47-cents? If you notice the yellow tags, that means the food is on markdown at Harris Teeter. But... for less than a cup of coffee?
Let me tell you the 3 things I learned tonight at the grocery store.
1. Be a cart gazer: Look around, particularly at what other people are buying.
Why? Tonight, I happened to look at another woman's cart. (Sounds scandalous!) I saw her with a boatload of meat. I noticed her pre-purchases were on sale... by the yellow tags. So, I took a few steps back to the meat aisle and stumbled upon my own meaty treasure trove.
2. Negotiate...and smile.
Did you know you could bargain? Notice I didn't say haggle. For example... the organic rib eye had a yellow, $5-off tag, but there wasn't a tag with the original price. The woman at the register (Marlene) told me she thought the steak originally cost about $16, but she called over the manager anyway. I told her it was unnecessary... but now I'm glad I didn't stop her. The manager said to me, "How much would you like it to be?" I responded with, "Um, well, I was hoping it would be like the other meat on sale." And then I smiled! Honestly, I didn't even want it that bad, but when he rang it up for $1, I wished I had been brave enough to ask if I could buy the rest on the shelf!
3. Listen to what grocery store workers have to say about the best deals.
When the manager rang up my meat, he said, "You know, I grabbed what was left and put them aside for myself." And then the woman at the register (Marlene) jokingly asked, "Oh, so you didn't leave anything for me?" So... that tells me I got a good deal. If anyone knows what's sweet or sour, it's the people who work there. It's also good to ask them questions every now and then about how the sales work or when they get a new shipment in... or if they collect coupons, too. It's really nice 1) to talk to the people around you, and 2) to learn something that could impact your everyday life.
So... why was the meat on sale? It needed to be sold by the 20th. I happened to be there at 11:30 p.m. on the 20th. The meat is fine... if you know anything about the food industry, you know that buying meat on the sold-by-date is probably the least of your worries. I saw the documentary Food Inc. and couldn't eat meat for a week.
But, let's turn back to happy thoughts. My parents raised cattle, pork and chickens at various times throughout my childhood. Unless you're getting your meat straight from a known-farm, you might as well save some change.
And, I should mention... that while I was writing this post and waiting for the pics to upload, my dinner for Wednesday baked in the oven! Nothing beats saving money and multi-tasking!
Get a jump on your New Year's resolution with Trainer Adam Freeman, Crest Fitness and Custom Fit Meals
When I say get a jump start... I mean a burpee jump start!
I've continued to work out and attempt to get healthy and stuff... BUT, I'm still setting goals for the new year. Of course, one of the top resolutions nationwide is to lose weight or become more healthy.
How are you going to do it?
Well, I found that Crest Fitness is offering some really great deals right now... one includes a fitness challenge that ends up giving away a membership for a year! Talk to the folks at Crest for details, but it's the gym's first-ever challenge like this and should be really fun!
My trainer, Adam Freeman, is also working up some personal-training-magic. For $99, he's giving away personal training sessions, a month membership at Crest, and a consultation with Custom Fit Meals owner Mike Clay plus half-off your first order! Details are below!
If you know of any good fitness deals, send them my way! Good luck!
I just got this incredible deal thanks to Stockpiling Moms. from Elizabeth Arden fragrances to makeup... there's even FREE SHIPPING. I'm pretty sure this offer will last until Dec. 20th.
Here are the basics-- You buy something for at least $27.50, then that qualifies you to buy a $350 gift set for $45, then those two purchases qualify you for a FREE gift set when you use a PROMO code. This is all on Elizabeth Arden's website.
Here's the 3-step breakdown... and at the end, I'll show you how to save even MORE money.
First, buy something like this ($29.50):
Then, that purchase qualifies you for this 33-piece, $350 gift set (you pay $45):
Those TWO purchases qualify you for a FREE gift set when you use a PROMO CODE (I got the Glam set):
AND... don't forget, there's FREE SHIPPING until the 20th. So, you basically spend $75 for all of the above products.
Here's how you save even MORE money:
- Bypass the Elizabeth Arden site, and instead go to Ebates.com
- Search for "eliabeth arden"
- You'll have to sign up (very quick) and then you'll get 10% back through Ebate.
- If it's your first time on Ebate, then you'll also get a $10 gift card to another retailer.
So... if you use Ebates, that means, you'll pay about $57 bucks + tax for all of the above products. What a great gift for an even better price! It takes a little work, but not much.
Wow! This is such an amazing deal if you LOVE Starbucks. I always try to go somewhere local, but I have to have me some SB, too.
Starbucks is giving away 12 great deals to celebrate the holidays. Today's deal was FREE coffee during the month of January as long as you bought a tumbler for about $20.
Now... I know some of you will say that's not a good deal... BUT if you think you get nickel-and-dimed by those delicious caffeinated drinks, then this is well-worth the purchase.
[SEE THE GIFTS STARBUCKS IS GIVING]
Unfortunately, today's deal has SOLD OUT... but I figure Gift #11 has got to be just as good! Check back again for the best deals!
You have to make time to workout every week... which is extremely HARD! But, this week, Adam is giving advice on how to get a quick workout in. Let me tell you, the exercises will get your heartbeat going!
I love saving money... Meteorologist Robb Ellis is calling me Coupon Sally these days! And everyone around here seems to be getting a kick out of my newfound hobby of couponing. But, let me tell you something. If you overspend on something, people will call you a sucker. If you start collecting coupons, people might call you cheap. I don't think I'm either. If a money-saving tool is staring me in the face... then I'm going to at least listen. No suckers here. Besides, the money I save in a week can buy a pair of shoes!
It's actually been a few weeks since I started giving couponing a try. And, thanks to my coupon coach, Mary Beth, I'm off to a pretty good understanding on how to save money at Harris Teeter. And, I've learned a few things along the way, too.
If you're a newbie, a great place to start is www.weusecoupons.com. They'll teach you the VERY basics. I love that website, thanks to MB. She also taught me the best lesson - form a NEW email just for couponing. Mine happens to be
firstname.lastname@example.org, in case you want to send anything my way!
I also look at www.southernsavers.com. They seem to have such a great wealth of knowledge, but they also seem to LOVE CVS. Unfortunately, my Padawan mind can only handle learning about one store at a time. Thinking about CVS' Extra Care Bucks system makes my head want to explode. So, right now, I'm sticking to the H-T.
Again, it can be like drinking water from a fire hydrant. But, I'm going slow.
So... I've bought a few things this week with coupons, but I really wanted to share this deal with you. It's my favorite deal. It's Mueller's Whole Grain spaghetti, which I bought for 18-cents a box. It normally costs $1.75. That means I spent 90-cents on something that would have cost $8.75.
How did I do it?
**The key is to buy something that's already on sale... and then match with a coupon from my arsenal.**
1. The pasta was on sale for Buy 2/Get 3 free.
2. Register you VIC card online (e-vic)
3. I had two coupons, 1 for .55-cents, another for .75-cents. I got one online and the other in a Sunday paper.
[Click here to get a free printable coupon]
4. Know that Harris Teeter doubles coupons up to $1.00... that means I got $1.10 + $1.50 off the two boxes that cost $1.75 each.
5. That means two boxes cost $3.50 minus $2.60 in coupons = .90 cents. And... since I bought two boxes, I got three for free!
6. So, .90-cents divided by 5 = .18 cents a box.
BOOM! Whole Grain pasta is so healthy for you. So, it was money well spent. And... what did I do with my savings? Bought a lottery ticket. Afterall, I'm feeling pretty lucky.
[Read other matchups for Harris Teeter this week!]
We had a fantabulous time at the Wilmington Fur Ball at the Cape Fear Country Club. Who couldn't love an event that's geared to helping find homes for adorable puppies and kittens?
The proceeds helped the Pender County Humane Society. It was so much fun! They did a few things that I hadn't seen in a while, like a wine "grab bag"... plus, the band was really great! The 360 Degrees band really kept the night moving. So, apologies to those who may have been caught up in my brief dance-floor windstorm. :)
The One Tree Hill sale is in full swing at Screen Gems studios, and to my surprise, it's not really crazy. I wished the line moved a bit faster and so did some other people. I got offered $100 to exchange places with a woman who was in the back of the line (she was trying to catch a plane.) But, everyone turned her down... it's 12:30 as I write this, so I'd probably just now be paying up if I would've taken her offer. I'm sure my husband would've appreciated it, though.
Anyway, I went with my friend, Vicky, and she was WAY better than me. She actually bought several things for her husband. I wanted to, but I'm terrible at picking things out for my spouse. So, I guess we'll just have to go back this weekend! LOL
My loot consisted of mostly new items. Shoes, ties, tons of jewelry, a purse... mostly store brands like Ralph Lauren, Banana Republic and J. Crew. The Auction Co. of Wilmington clumped a bunch of jewelry together in bags, so in some cases I even got duplicates of new earrings. I have a nice pair of Betsey Johnson shoes and some really great necklaces.
If you want to go, the sale continues through Sunday. Pack some patience and wear comfortable clothing. If you want to try on clothes while you're there, I saw girls wearing yoga-ish outfits so they could just try on something over what they were already wearing. There are no fitting rooms.
Also, if you want to check out faster, bring cash. There are two lines - one for checks and credit cards (Visa and MC only) and then one for people who use real money. And, don't forget to account for taxes.