Happy Thursday! Grab a friend or family member to enjoy this bogo deal. But, plan to be home by 10pm – The Situation is getting punched out tonight on “Jersey Shore”!!
Workin’ on My Slice of the Pie
I am as tight as a tick… and it is GLORIOUS. For my readers who don’t know me personally, I totally just gave away the fact that I’m from the country. Hee hee. My daddy would be proud. Tonight, I took advantage of the two-day promotion at Pei Wei. An online order with the promotional code “BIRTHDAY” (not mine – I’m 29 and holding from here on out) knocked off 20% of the total bill. I was able to get two meals for $13.15, after tax. Not bad. And worth all 750 calories…
Speaking of dinner, are you in need of groceries? Tired of losing that list on a sticky note and trying to remember what was on it? Hello, FREE Out of Milk app! Thanks to that doll of a friend, Bluefish, my life just got easier. And when you get back home with your organic peanut butter, did you know that storing the jar upside down prevents the oil from pooling at the top? Thanks Trader Joe’s employee!
While we’re on a roll in the organization department… if I need to send e-invitations or e-cards, I typically use Hallmark (though the FREE pool of e-cards is quickly dwindling) and Evite. Watch out! Thanks to Samantha, Chavon’s matron of honor, I have been introduced to Punchbowl. This service provides both FREE e-cards and e-invitations that are adorable. The best part? Clicking on the mailbox and watching your “card” open. Even lets you customize your stamp!
I am sad to report that Borders is closing for good. The going out of business sales have already begun at all stores, with items up to 40% off. I am thinking of early Christmas gifts!
An Apple a Day
Hate that harsh chemical smell of your nail polish remover (and worry about skin contact)? Try Karma Organic Nail Polish Remover with Soybean Oil and Lavender. ($12)
Show up for FREE yoga classes and get your stretch on at North Regional Library on 8/4 and 8/23 at 7pm. Howie is hilarious and uses phrases like, “Isn’t that savory?” Who knew retired dentists were so flexible?
Whether it is a craving after too much partying or the “meat” of your Midol and chocolate sandwich… When ordering pizza, you can still go the healthy route: Ask for thin crust (less bread equals less calories); pile on the veggies (less room for cheese equals less calories); steer clear of pesto (has more calories than tomato sauce); if adding meat, choose ham or chicken over sausage or meatballs (less fat); and blot your pizza with a napkin.
Take advantage of Ornamentea’s Try-It-Tuesday class on 8/2. Learn a technique and leave with a cute accessory, all for $3!
I’m super excited to share my news – I am now on Etsy! My collection of TIT pieces was overflowing and I’ve even started making jewelry at home, so I compiled everything and created my very own StrawberryBlossoms store. Hooray!
Girls Just Wanna Have…
Need a creative birthday gift? Scentsy’s warmer of the month, Cupcake, is 10% off through July.
Rent 2 Redbox movies at the same time between now and July 31, verify your email address at checkout, and receive a FREE one-night DVD promo code good between 8/1 – 8/14.
Attend Raleigh’s FREE ComeUnityNow Festival on July 30 10am-10pm in City Plaza. Stop by the Logan’s Trading Company tent to get a coupon.
State Fair tickets go on sale at 10am on 8/1. You’ll be able to buy them online on the fair’s website at a discounted rate. Advance price tickets for adults ages 13 to 64 will be $6 (instead of the regular price of $8). The price is $2, instead of $3, for kids ages 6 to 12. And ride tickets will be $10 for a sheet of 18. They’ll sell for $1 per ticket during the fair. The advance price is good from 8/1 to 10/13. Tickets for concerts in Dorton Arena also go on sale on 8/1 (Tift Merritt performs on 10/16!). The State Fair runs 10/13 to 10/23, this year.
I have been thinking of incorporating this slight change to Fashion Cents on a Dime. There are four areas of life that remain high on my list of priorities – saving money, health, making jewelry, and having fun, and I’d like to touch on each area during most blog posts. Who doesn’t want to be rich, feel fabulous, look fabulous, and have fun doing all three?
No other words to describe this, but, “OMG”!!! Save money on dinner tonight by visiting Tijuana Flats at the corner of Milbrook and Falls of the Neuse. Awesome food, very cool atmosphere, and one person eats FREE! I’ll see you there!
I am so proud of myself! I took my first Try-It Tuesday class at Ornamentea with Bluefish, tonight. From 10am to 8pm every Tuesday, you can stop by for a quick and easy project… all for $2! Tonight’s item was a pair of green sparkly drops earrings, just in time for St. Patrick’s Day on Thursday. I also made a pair of antique brass filigree flower earrings. These were just $6. Check out some adorable and affordable items at Funny Big Toe. (www.etsy.com/shop/funnybigtoe)
Have you heard? The Aveda Institute in Chapel Hill offers discounted services by cosmetologists in training. Cuts range from $19-$25, all over color with simple highlights goes up to $65, and spa pedicures are $25. And the coolest part? Tips are not accepted. You may, however, donate to “Tips for a Cause” (the charity choice for that particular month) in lieu of tipping. (www.avedainstitutechapelhill.com)
The Chick-fil-A cows have stepped up their game. Chick-fil-A is offering FREE breakfast items every Tuesday during the month of March (8:00 – 10:30am). Also, if you bring in your church bulletin from Saturday or Sunday each Monday, you’ll receive a FREE original sandwich when you buy a side item and medium drink. (Verify that your Chick-fil-A location is a participating restaurant – www.chick-fil-a.com .)
Bruegger’s is offering a baker’s dozen of bagels for $5.99 every Wednesday. (www.brueggers.com )
Sure, Costco seems to have a deal on everything, including…. contacts? Why has this never dawned on me?! The Raleigh store has an optical department and has the cheapest prices of contacts, on average, nationwide. Simply know your prescription and brand when inquiring. (www.costco.com )
Through 3/31, wear your favorite school’s baseball gear when you visit Biltmore Estate and receive $10 off your admission ($29 rather than $39). (www.biltmore.com )
Bank of America debit and credit card holders will get FREE admission to 150 facilities nationwide (including Marbles Kids Museum) on the first full weekend of every month (4/2-3 is the next one). (www.mbna.com )
CVS is now offering a new budget friendly brand (Just the Basics) for general household needs. Look for the lower case “b”. (www.cvs.com )
Macaroni Kid is a newsletter which suggests mostly FREE family activities in North Raleigh (http://northraleigh.macaronikid.com ), South Raleigh (http://southraleigh.macaronikid.com ), and Durham (http://durham.macaronikid.com ).
Wednesday (tomorrow) is the last day of the latest Central Raleigh Borders closing sale. Prices are 30-50% off plus an extra 10%. Even store fixtures and equipment are for sale! (www.borders.com )
Tuesday night, I redeemed a coupon for a free cup of soup at Quizno’s.
I received on Wednesday my $10 gift card to Eye Care Associates for taking the online survey after my appointment.
Thursday night, I used two $50 gift cards at CVS (from submitting Blue Points through BCBS)! Also on Thursday night, Andrew purchased a WaterSense toilet, which uses 1 gallon of water versus 3, and is eligible for a $100 rebate.
On Friday, I received my federal tax income refund. I applied every cent to my credit card with the smallest balance. Man, that felt good. On Friday night, Andrew and I cashed in a $25 Living Social gift card ($10 price) to Pulcinella’s Italian Restaurant. (www.pulcinellaraleigh.com ) I received $2 off of the $12 price for simply watching a 32 second trailer on NBC’s America’s Next Great Restaurant.
Saturday morning, Andrea and I attended the Downtown Designers Market. I scored an African shell bracelet for $5! (www.africanbeautyjewelryandartifacts.com ) Andrea brought with her my new “Oprah” book that she found at the Borders sale. I am super excited to dive in. Later that day, Andrew and I enjoyed a BOGO deal at Henry’s Gelato. Try the bacio flavor. (www.henrysgelato.com ) That night, my two Andys and I (Andrea and Andrew) visited Vinos Finos Y Picadas to hear Andy Coats perform solo – NO cover. (www.vinosfinosypicadas.com ) Awesome cheese, nuts, and dried fruit.
Sunday night, Andrew and I celebrated St. Patrick’s Day early by redeeming a $15 Twongo gift card at Napper Tandy’s. (www.nappertandysirishpub.com )
Also this week, I performed my first doorknob replacement, finished the Dave Ramsey book, and realized what to give up for Lent… my temper. (I just heard my boyfriend sigh in relief!)
As I think of all that the Japanese are facing, I am so thankful for companies like Time Warner Cable, Vonage, AT&T, and Verizon which are allowing customers to call Japan for FREE for a limited time.
I’m excited to try another FREE yoga class, tomorrow night. We just happened to have a substitute teacher in my Monday night yoga class, who announced that she teaches 4-5 students in her home each Wednesday evening. Hip, hip, hooray! Or, should it be hip flexor, hip flexor, hooray?!
I survived the Superbowl, but the halftime show is another story. Did anyone else have a flashback to the Oompa Loompas in “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory”? Add robot/astronaut suits and a cheesy light show and voila! Anyway, they can’t all top Janet Jackson, can they?
Groupon offered yet another awesome deal on Sunday that I had to take advantage of – $10 for $20 worth of food at The Flying Biscuit Cafe (www.flyingbiscuit.com). This cafe, located in adorable Cameron Village, has delicious and unique food combinations. While at Smoothie King Sunday afternoon, I noticed a new promotion. Every Friday is Freeloader Friday, where you and a friend can take advantage of a BOGO deal. That’s a healthy way to wrap up the work week. Try the Grape Expectations.
On Monday, I spotted Subway’s new ad – Februany. Any footlong is $5 during the month of February. Normally, the $5 footlong deal applies only to particular subs, but in February you can choose from the entire menu. On Monday night, I attended my beloved yoga class. Oh, how I have missed it! I began practicing yoga last summer. In November, my yoga instructor had to take a leave of absence due to pregnancy. No replacement was found until now. Not only do I feel energized, relaxed, and toned after each yoga class, the class is FREE! Christ Episcopal Church (www.christ-church-raleigh.org) provides the class for members and non-members, alike. The class is made up of 15-20 women (every now and then a gentleman stops in to see what all the fuss is about) ranging from about 30 to about 70 years in age. Who knew how good it could feel to do The Pigeon? I believe it was John Cougar Mellencamp who said, “Come on baby, make it hurt so good.” After yoga class, I used a BOGO coupon at Cafe Carolina & Bakery (www.cafecarolina.com). My total bill was just over $8! I recommend the Cafe Tuna Salad Plate, complete with a hard boiled egg.
On Tuesday morning, I awoke 30 minutes late. Eeeeek! The strangest thing happened – the alarm was set properly and even went off, only the sound was missing! Grrrrrrr Later that day, I received an email coupon from Sherwin Williams for 25% off! During the fall of last year, I purchased the painting paraphernalia needed and have since completed three bathrooms in St. Barts, Lemon Verbena, and Plantation Brown. Next, is either the kitchen or one of the bedrooms. (I am thinking Show Stopper for the master bedroom.) So much to do, so little time! On Tuesday night, I walked my usual three miles with Grace Ann at the ROC, the free gym at Trinity Baptist Church. With all the talk of exercising and eating healthy, it dawned on me that I have not shared my favorite app, Calorie Counter. With this app, you can search restaurants, popular brands, and supermarket brands for nutrition content, record your food and exercise diaries, and track your weight – all for FREE!
Have you ever seen the movie “Groundhog Day”? Well, this morning’s alarm didn’t go off, either! In the mornings, every second counts, so the 30 minutes of extra napping totally threw me off schedule. What good is a Crackberry if it doesn’t work?! At least the Facebook application works like a charm. How else could I entertain myself? Tomorrow at work, we are having a farewell lunch for a department that will be transferring to another building. I am responsible for a dessert. A dessert for about thirty people. A dessert that I don’t have to cook or fuss over. A dessert that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. Wait a tic… Is that a mirage in the distance? No, it is Costco! I ran right over on my lunch break and got 30 mini Belgian cakes with white chocolate shavings for $7.44! I’ll just arrange them on a cute serving plate and tell my co-workers that I slaved over them all night. Tonight for dinner, Andrew and I cashed in on the Flying Biscuit Cafe Groupon coupon. We had an appetizer and two meals for $5.39, before tip ($15.39 counting the Groupon purchase)! I would definitely get the black bean burger with guacamole, again.
In this Battle of the Blues, Andrew is unusually quiet. No yelling at the referee or making fun of the announcer. “It’s like having to choose between Satan and a terrorist,” he says. “Can’t they both lose?” Duke is puke, Wake is fake, the team I love is NC State!
Thursday marked the start of the Chinese New Year, the Year of the Rabbit. This year symbolizes sensitivity and wealth earned with hard work. This is our year, baby! It is written in the stars that through hard work, our debts will be paid down and our wealth will increase. Here’s to one wabbit that isn’t pesky.
My Chinese New Year began with interesting news. Driving to work that morning, I heard a commercial for NCSU’s new online MBA program (www.mgt.ncsu.edu/mba). The program, which launches this fall, offers students the opportunity to earn an MBA via online methods. In the past, NCSU offered an MBA offered via online and in person methods on a full or part-time basis. The program that begins this fall will allow students to participate fully online with the exception of one three day residency in Raleigh and one overseas trip. This is a wonderful opportunity for those who can’t commit to a traditional schedule. Thanks to my alma mater for providing such a convenient program.
On Thursday night, I visited my cousin Thomas (aka Sweet T, aka T Rex, aka LL Cool T). His mother was kind enough to buy him a new leather recliner. Every bachelor knows that his palace isn’t complete without a throne. And his takes the cake – black, leather, and as soft as a cloud. Being the avid recycler that I am, I asked if I could rescue his old green hand-me-down to have rebuilt and recovered. This chair is the Chair and a Half style and proved to be just that in weight. My cousin and Andrew had no problems moving it from Thomas’s townhouse to Andrew’s car, but getting it from Andrew’s car into my townhouse was another story. We ended up ‘rolling’ it up the stairs, with him on the verge of a breakdown and me laughing hysterically (an involuntary reflex during times of stress). I thought he was going to lose it when it first appeared that the chair wouldn’t fit through the guest bedroom doorway. I thought suggesting to him to “lift with his knees” was considerate. Apparently not…
Eeeek! Friday brought a headache, sniffles, and sneezing. Note to self: eat more super foods. Those of you who know me well, know that I refuse to take medicine. So, I am treating my symptoms with hot tea and rest. To my relief, I have recovered tremendously since last night at this time. With no groceries in the house (ever), I bundled up and enjoyed a BOGO dinner at A Slice of NY Pizza. Our total bill was just over $8! Afterwards, we rented “Date Night” through Redbox for $1. Steve Carell and Tina Fey do not disappoint.
As part of the healing ritual, I slept until noon on Saturday. Andrew and I enjoyed another BOGO meal, this time at Sunflower’s (www.sunflowersraleigh.com). Healthy and fresh sandwiches of every combination… need I say more? In preparation for the Superbowl (let’s go…. commercials!), I braved Costco for some supplies. For you last minute shoppers, Costco is offering a HUGE pepperoni pizza at the automatic $3 discounted price (no coupon needed) of $6.99. Other honorable mentions are Little Sweets mini cinnamon rolls (32 for $5.99), Silk vanilla soy milk (3 half gallons for $6.99), and Kirkland’s organic creamy peanut butter ($7.79 for 2 28 ounce jars). Tonight’s meal was a BOGO Mexican dinner at La Rancherita, totaling just over $13 for two even after tip.
As I watch Food Network at 2am (a bad idea), it dawns on me that it is now officially Superbowl Sunday. May your chili be hearty and your wings kickin’. And, ladies, his testosterone level will return to a semi-normal state in just a few hours…