Tag Archives: Lowe’s

Star-Spangled Sales Banner

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Happy Fourth of July weekend!  Driving to Brier Creek for dinner last night, I was surprised with a good thirty minutes of fireworks.  Lots of people pulled onto the side of highway 70 to take a moment to enjoy the show.  But the Triangle has much more than fireworks in store for those of you interested in celebrating:

  • Through today, Earth Fare has whole seedless watermelons for only $2!  Must present coupon.  (www.earthfare.com)
  • Through today, buy one entree get one FREE at Draft Carolina Burgers and Beers.  (http://www.draftraleigh.com/eblast/IndepDay063011/exports/coupon.pdf)
  • Today at Lake Benson Park, Garner celebrates with live music, the NC Symphony, kids’ activities, and fireworks (9:30pm).  Gates open at 5pm.  FREE
  • Today at South Park in Fuquay Varina, live music, kids’ activities, and fireworks.  Gates open at 6pm.  FREE
  • Through Monday, July 4, select beach towels are 60% off at Kohl’s.  (www.kohls.com)
  • Through Monday, July 4, Party City has lots of patriotic items (cups, table covers, plates) buy one get one FREE.  (www.partycity.com)
  • Through Monday, July 4, Bruegger’s will donate $1 from every Big Bagel Bundle purchase (a baker’s dozen bagels and two tubs of cream cheese) to Home for Our Troops.  And if you are feeling brave and don’t mind the food coloring, red, white, and blue bagels are options.  (http://www.homesforourtroops.org/site/Calendar/1306420942?view=Detail&id=108221)
  • Through Monday, July 4, Whole Foods offers a $20 bundle meal deal including approximately one pound of wild-caught Sockeye salmon, a family size mixed green salad, a six-inch apple pie, and thirty-two ounces of Santa Cruz organic lemonade – a $13 savings!  (http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/storespecials/NRL_specials.pdf)
  • Through Monday, July 4 (10-6pm daily), Durham’s Festival for the Eno offers live music, garden expos, arts, and children’s activities.  Admission is $15/person.  (www.enoriver.org/festival/index.html)
  • Through Monday, July 4, Perfumania offers 10% off select items plus FREE shipping on orders $25 or more plus three FREE samples with every order.  Use coupon code “JULY4TH”.  (www.perfumania.com)
  • Through Monday, July 4, get 20% off of any one sale item at Stein Mart.  (http://f.e.steinmart.com/i/24/2075620050/6_29_July4_Coupon.pdf)
  • Through Monday, July 4, paints and stains are 30% 0ff at Sherwin Williams.  (www.sherwin-williams.com)
  • Through Monday, July 4, 16.6 pound bags of Kingsford charcoal briquets are buy one get one FREE at Lowe’s.  (www.lowes.com)
  • Monday, July 4, live music, sports competitions, arts and crafts, and mini-golf will be held at the State Fairgrounds beginning at 5:30pm.  Fireworks begin at 9:45pm.  FREE
  • On Monday, July 4, look for the NC Symphony (7:30pm show) and fireworks (immediately following) at the Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary.  FREE

Here are some other events to look forward to:

Enjoy your holiday and be safe, but no matter how you celebrate, try this new Grilled Bananas recipe from Whole Foods.  This could be successfully paired with a burger, beer, or ice cream.  Mmmmmm.

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Snowballs in Spring

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I’m an aunt… again!  No, Morgan isn’t yet a big sister.  I love to call myself “aunt” whenever my close friends have babies.  Congratulations to Ambie and Josh!  I can’t wait to meet their sweet bundle of joy, Daniel Troy.  (And, this is even more reason to visit them in sunny FL!)  How was your Cinco de Mayo?  Your Mother’s Day?  Your past few weeks?  I hope you’ve been seeing snowballs in spring… debt snowballs.

Doing things outdoors, like walking around the lake, attending Jimmy’s birthday pig pick’n, and grilling out with William and his friends, has made me think of lazy summer past times… and the new organic apple acai smoothie at Smoothie King.  As the temperatures creep up to the 90s and the neighborhood pools open, we begin to dream about vacationing with our toes in the sand and drinks with tiny umbrellas.  Sure, Stein Mart’s swimsuits (www.steinmart.com) are 30% off and Kohl’s (www.kohls.com) are up to 50% off, but consider Dave’s latest article before you’ve taken two baby steps back – “Does your vacation match your budget?”  (www.daveramsey.com)  Speaking of summer, Wal-Mart has a pink double knock out rose-bush in a 3 gallon container for $16 and an 18 gallon beverage container with handles in red, orange, blue, and green for $5.97 – just the things you need for deck parties.  (www.walmart.com)

I was excited to read “The Budget Family Weekend: Atlanta” in the April 2011 edition of “Southern Living” magazine. (www.southernliving.com)  A family of three saved money on dining by purchasing a picnic lunch from our beloved Trader Joe’s (www.traderjoes.com), enjoying it in Piedmont Park, and having breakfast at the very lovely Flying Biscuit Cafe (www.flyingbiscuit.com).  I was so glad to learn that two of my favorite places made the savings cut!  Also in the same magazine edition, Mia James restores her Baton Rouge home and had these five steps to guide anyone on home purchases:  1) Buy only what you love; 2) Use a signature color palette; 3) Make antiques the focal point; 4) Choose art with your heart; and 5) Pick furniture that will work in multiple spaces.  I know I’m always in a hurry to complete a room, but it is wise to be sure about your purchases so that you’ll use them for years to come and will get your money’s worth.

These past few weeks have flown by!  I did a few of the TIT projects at Ornamentea – a Coreopsis Bangle on 5/3 with Bluefish and Joanna and a Pearl Cocktail Ring on 5/17 with Bluefish.  Nothing like FREE Hershey’s Kisses and FREE hot tea to help you focus on a jewelry project.  While I was there this past Tuesday, I bought beads for one of the two pairs of earrings that I’ll make for Peggy’s birthday.  I just hope she likes them!  (www.ornamentea.com)  I completed my two continuing ed real estate classes.  I don’t know what intrigued me more – real estate taxes and form changes or listening to my teacher’s Texas accent.  If any agents/brokers need to fulfill some credits, Legacy Real Estate school offers pre-licensing, post-licensing, and continuing ed classes ($45/class) at lower rates.  (www.legacyrealestateschool.com)  I saved money in the food area by taking advantage of the Moe’s (www.moes.com) Cinco de Mayo promotion (two meals were $9 and change), having the two for $20 special at Chili’s (www.chilis.com) with Chuti (definitely splurge on the Chocolate Chip Paradise Pie), and making nachos at home.  At least this didn’t require me to turn on the oven.  I saved $5 per ticket purchasing two Cape Fear Beer Fest tickets (www.capefearbeerfest.com) for Mama and Daddy, as a Father’s Day gift.  Tickets were $35 rather than $40 when purchased prior to 5/15, if a promotional code was used.  I just googled this code and found that a local radio station published “encore”.  Easy as pie!  I bought Miss Morgan nature bracelets (butterflies, insects, and plants) from Blockbuster, on clearance for $.99.  (www.blockbuster.com)  Andrew and I bought Mother’s Day flowers from Trader Joe’s for the mothers in both of our families.  Potted begonias (white, pink, or red) were only $2.99 and cut cream-colored hydrangeas were only $5.99.  The Red Room (the master bedroom in Show Stopper red) is now complete!  All that’s left to do is purchase a small rug to cover the paint stain on the floor.  Until then, I’ll just tell my guests to be snobby and look up.  I joined Moolala (www.moolala.com), which is similar to Groupon and Living Social.  The only difference is that Moolala gives members 2% back on every deal purchased.  Andrew and I tried two new places that I must share with you.  Pronto Pasta (www.prontopasta.com) offers fast and fresh soups and pastas.  Try the quinoa with spinach pesto and tomato basil soup.  Thanks Bryan!  Relish Cafe & Bar (www.relishraleigh.com) serves comfort food with a twist.  Dig in to the Italian mac & cheese skillet.  Thanks C-dub!  Thanks to Sarah, I have a new gem on my list to try – Gigi’s Cupcakes.  With flavors like Champagne and Kentucky Bourbon Pie, this is a must.  Be sure to read “Gigi’s Story”.  (www.gigiscupcakesusa.com/raleighnc)  I babysat sweet Alex.  He spoke partly in Thai while I perfected my Southern accent.  Why is it so mesmerizing to watch a child take everything out of my purse, then put everything back in all the wrong places?  I could just squeeze him.

Some Things to Look Forward to:

For a limited time while supplies last, Borders offers 40% off CDs and DVDs, in stores only.  (www.borders.com)

Through 4pm today, take the Hen-side the Beltline Tour D’Coop, the 6th annual Raleigh garden tour of hens and coops.  Admission – a non-perishable food item or cash donation to Urban Ministries of Wake County.  100% of the proceeds will be donated.  (http://tourdcoop.com)

Through 5pm today, the Magic Wings Festival is held at the Museum of Life and Science in Durham.  Admission – Adults $12.95, children ages 3-12 $9.95, children under 3 FREE.  (www.ncmls.org)

Through today only, get $5 off a $25 purchase at Dollar General.  (http://dollargeneral.com/coupons/Pages/index.aspx)

Also through today only, Old Navy offers $1 flip-flops.  Limit 5 per customer.  Bring in your old flip-flops to be recycled.  Also, get $5 off a $35 purchase.  (http://oldnavy1.m.delivery.net/w/webView?cid=22462892314&mid=1945212391&pid=789178&vid=131&ee=YmlybWluZ2hhbWjhcmdhaW5tb21AZ21haWwuY29t&si=&mv=H&bv=H&oc=H&sc=&k=1pyPNd)

Through 5pm tomorrow, Raleigh’s Museum of Life and Science hosts Astronomy Days.  FREE admission.  How cool is this in conjunction with Pope Benedict XVI’s first papal call to space?!  (http://naturalsciences.org)

Through tomorrow, the musical version of “Stuart Little” is being performed at the North Raleigh Arts and Creative Theatre.  Tonight’s show is at 7pm ($15) and tomorrow’s matinée is at 3pm ($10).  Senior and student tickets are $12.   (www.nract.org)

Through tomorrow, Artsplosure 2011, the Raleigh Arts Festival, is held in Moore Square and City Plaza.  Admission – $5 per person.  (www.artsplosure.org)

Through tomorrow, the Got to be NC Festival is at the State Fairgrounds with food, rides, and live entertainment.  FREE admission and FREE parking.  The Smurfs will make an appearance today, through 5pm!  (www.ncagfest.com)

Through tomorrow at Earth Fare, get a coupon for a FREE pound of shrimp with any $10 purchase.  (www.earthfare.com)

Through 5/23, Borders is holding its Customer Appreciation weekend.  If you are a member, check your email for the 50% off coupon for one item and the coupon for 50% off one large cafe beverage.  If you aren’t a member, sign up!  It’s FREE.  (www.borders.com)

Through 5/25, Redbox is offering texted discounts on movie rentals.  Each day, text DEALS to 727272 to receive a new daily discount code, offering anywhere from $.10 to $1.50 off your rental.  Andrew and I did this last night and received $.50 off our rental for “The Next Three Days”.  (www.redbox.com)

Through 5/28 at Ulta, Rejuvenating Bath & Shower Gels and 3 in 1 Shower Smoothies are buy 2 get 2 FREE (mix and match).  Includes yummy smells like Mandarin Mint and Chocolate Milkshake.  (www.ulta.com)

Through 6/7 in conjunction with Barnes & Noble, Ree Drummond performs an online reading of her children’s book, “Charlie the Ranch Dog.”  A new online story begins on 6/7.  (www.barnesandnoble.com)

Through 6/15, get $1 off McDonald’s new McCafe Frozen Strawberry Lemonade.  (http://cdn.eyewonder.com/100125/769897/1478424/coupon_landing_page.html)

5/22-30, Sherwin Williams paints and stains are 30% off.  (www.sherwin-williams.com)

On 5/24, Ornamentea’s TIT project is Ruffle Ear Drops for only $2.  (www.ornamentea.com)

On 5/26, the Midtown Beach Music Series spotlighted band is The Magnificents.  6-9pm.  North Hills Commons.  FREE  (www.northhillsraleigh.com/news/3758)

On 5/28 at 10am, the Lowe’s Build and Grow FREE project for kids is Biplane.  (www.lowes.com)

From 6/1 – 9/5 for kids 12 and under, Borders offers a “read 10 books get 1 free” promotion with its Double-Dog Dare Challenge.  (http://media.bordersstores.com/pdf/formDoubleDogDare.pdf)

At the 6/4 game against the Pawtucket Red Sox, the Durham Bulls (players, coaches, and Wooley Bull) will be going pink to show their support in the fight against breast cancer.  $12 gets you a ticket, a Bulls baseball cap, and a pink Komen for the Cure bracelet.  $2 from every Komen Go Pink $12 package sold will be donated to the Susan G. Komen foundation.  Enter promotional code “KOMEN”, for online ticket purchases.  (www.dbulls.com)  Kohl’s has also joined in the fight against breast cancer, offering $5 and $10 Food Network breast cancer merchandise.  Shop for a cure.  (www.kohls.com/kohlsStore/landingpages/foodnetwork_new/WomensCauseMerchandise.jsp?om_mid=_20110428_BCMerch)  Our Race for the Cure team, Pink Floyd, has grown to 28 registered walkers/runners, 60 team t-shirt orders, and over $1,000 in donations!  There’s still time to make a difference.  (http://www.info-komen.org/site/TR/RacefortheCure/DUR_NCTriangleAffiliate/16677936?pg=team&fr_id=2137&team_id=152919)

On 6/11 at 10am, the Lowe’s Build and Grow FREE project for kids is Goofy Golf.  (www.lowes.com)

Beginning 6/14 through August, Raleigh Grande 16 Movie Theatre presents the 2011 Free Family Film Series, offering a FREE movie every Tuesday and Wednesday mornings at 10am and a $4 drink and popcorn combo.  (www.carolinacinemas.com/raleigh/announcements.php)

On 6/18 in historic downtown Burgaw, is the 8th annual North Carolina Blueberry Festival.  Admission is FREE.  (www.ncblueberryfestival.com)

On 6/25 at 10am, the Lowe’s Build and Grow FREE project for kids is Waving Flag.  (www.lowes.com)

On 7/9 at 10am, the Lowe’s Build and Grow FREE project for kids is Tow Truck.  (www.lowes.com)

On 7/23 at 10am, the Lowe’s Build and Grow FREE project for kids is Binoculars.  (www.lowes.com)

Check out the NC Museum of Art’s new FREE mobile app.  (http://triangleartsandentertainment.org/2011/05/north-carolina-museum-of-art-launches-first-ipad-app-free-video)

Salon Blu offers New Talent Mondays and Tuesdays, with men’s cuts for $19, women’s cuts for $29, and cut and color combos for $79.  Salons are located in midtown, Brier Creek, and North Raleigh and have won awards including Best Hair Salon in Wake County (Independent Weekly 2008) and Trendiest Salon (Social Magazine 2008).  (www.salonbluhair.com)

Raleigh’s new Contemporary Art Museum has opened its doors.  General admission is $5, but FREE for members, children 10 and under, members of the military, and NC State students, faculty, and staff.  (http://camraleigh.org)

Here’s a new savings website:  www.southernsavers.com.  Thank you Jenny!

Are you in need of a gift?  Check out Sam Moon’s latest collar necklaces in funky styles and lovely colors.  (http://www.sammoon.com/dev/product.asp?cat=jewelry&tempcat=Trendy_Style⊂=sub)  For a young child, I always love Kohl’s Cares books and stuffed animals.  At only $5 each, 100% of the net profits will be donated to kids’ health and education initiatives nationwide.  The latest?  “Llama Llama Red Pajama” and “Llama Llama Misses Mama” books with llama and zebra stuffed animals.  (www.kohls.com/kohlsStore/landingpages/kohlscares/kidscausemerchandise.jsp)

Keep your eyes open for treats for Father’s Day, which is less than a month away.  Scentsy is offering “manly” scents such as Amber Road and products such as the Magellan warmer to mask the man cave.  (http://scentsy.net)  If he is an NCSU graduate or fan, take a look at NC State’s online store, where purchases are shipped in 3 days.  (www.ncstateshop.com)  Through 5/23, enter promotional code “BOOK4MAY” to receive a $15 8×11 custom photo book through Snapfish.  (www.snapfish.com)  Or do like Andrew and buy something functional.  He found a fun pen/fan combo for himself at Stein Mart for only $5.  (www.steinmart.com)

Well, I’m off to get ready for Chavon’s bridal shower.  She and Ken didn’t register for the typical types of gifts that most engaged couples register for (china, towels, etc).  They have everything they need, so Chavon’s matron of honor is hosting a Honeymoon Shower.  Guests will bring gifts that can be used by Chavon and Kendrick while they are honeymooning in a beachy setting.  How fun is that?!

Apparently, He Brought Obama’s Birth Certificate

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How was your Easter?  I had a lovely time in Newton Grove (or Circle City, as my Daddy likes to call it).  On my way down on Sunday morning, I ran by the new Whole Foods on Six Forks Rd and grabbed two fruit tarts for $4.99 each for Sweet Thing and Uncle Carl, and a lavender bunny cake for $6.99 for Mama and Daddy.  They were a hit!  And I loved that my family was eating products made with ingredients like cage-free eggs, natural butter, and unbleached flour.  (www.wholefoodsmarket.com)  I was able to spend the entire afternoon relaxing and visiting and chatting.  I love using Hallmark’s FREE e-cards to surprise friends and family on holidays (my favorite this year was ‘Candy Wrappers’, a rapping chick and bunny duo), but I also picked up seven Easter cards and one birthday card at Kroger for $8.18.  (www.hallmark.com)  Of course, my folks never let me come back to Raleighwood empty-handed.  Mama saved her recent collection of “Good Housekeeping”, “Southern Living”, and “Redbook” magazines for me, and Daddy had three baby tomato plants waiting.  The simple gifts are always the sweetest.  Looks like the Easter Bunny wasn’t empty-handed, either, in DC… Apparently, he brought Obama’s birth certificate.

Since last week, I walked my dog, downward-facing, at one of my two FREE yoga classes offered each week.  Both classes break for the summer, so I need to get in the habit of practicing on my own.  Instead of paying for gym membership fees, Andrew and I have opted to take part in FREE outdoor activities now that the temperatures are soaring and the days are longer, like walking around Lake Lynn with Chuti, Scott, Alex, and Chela.  (Can you imagine how excited I was to hear almost-two-year-old Alex say my name?!)  (http://www.raleighfree.com/lake_lynn_park.html)  Andrew and I took a road trip to Goldsboro to the Wings Over Wayne air show on Sunday.  My absolute favorite trick was the snow white exhaust from a jet forming a humongous heart in the bright, blue sky.  Afterwards, we had dinner at the local Outback.  I was able to get my favorite Signature Side Salad (the blue cheese pecan chopped salad) in an entree size, at NO additional charge ($3.99).  Andrew’s father, Dale, gave me a FREE Adele CD.  Love, love, love it.  Think Macy Gray meets Amy Winehouse.  We redeemed a $4 off coupon at Red Lobster.  I had one of my favorite dishes (a tuna salad salad) at one of my favorite places (Shish Kabob) for only $5.50.  I used the last of my $50 gift card to Goodberry’s that I paid only $25 for.  I will miss those late night frozen custard runs.  I racked up at Trader Joe’s:  salsa, spicy black bean dip, gorgonzola crackers, fig cereal bars, pita chips, 2 pounds of pink lady apples, blue corn tortilla chips, apricot and raspberry shortbread cookies, oat and wheat bran cereal, 2 cans of no salt added albacore tuna, 4 bananas, and tea tree oil facial wash…. all for $32.49.  No coupons, none needed, and still not cooking!  (www.traderjoes.com)  I destroyed my Citipass book.  It was starting to look mangy from all of the missing coupons and pages, so I put it out of its misery and ripped out all of the remaining pages.  For the coupons that I wouldn’t use, I made piles for various friends and passed the rest around my office.  (http://raleighcitipass.com/)  On Monday, Andrew and I took advantage of PF Chang’s tax day special (15% off all orders) and dined on Mandarin Chicken and Buddha’s Feast for $17.47.  On 4/19, I did Ornamentea’s Try-It Tuesday project (Fabulous Floral Earrings) with Bluefish.  We wrapped pastel flowers and beads around copper-colored hoops.  On 4/26, Andrea and I did the Try-It Tuesday Comfy Summer Bangle project.  I made mine for Miss Morgan, with purple beads, of course.  (www.ornamentea.com)  It’s that time of year again – time to take continuing ed classes to keep my NC real estate license active.  Of all the schools (HPW, JY Monk, Fonville Morisey, etc), Legacy offers the most affordable classes at $45 per class versus $50-$65 for other schools.  (www.legacyrealestateschool.com)  I know it is only April, but I have already ordered my first Christmas gift, for Andrew’s grandmother!  I also found a cute gift for Brian, whose birthday is not until August.  With such passion for the ‘Pack, this family is easy to shop for.  (www.ncstateshop.com)  Tonight, Chavon, Andrew, and I joined tons of other folks at Brio for $2.95 appetizers in the bar.  Don’t let the price fool you; these appetizers are hearty.  Try the margherita flatbread and ravioli.  (www.brioitalian.com)

In response to the devastation caused by last Saturday’s tornadoes, folks at work donated items to the Red Cross.  (www.redcross.org)  I shopped at Costco, which allowed me to buy in bulk and use coupons from this month’s coupon booklet for 5 out of 8 items purchased, saving me $11.75.  I donated 90 33-gallon Kirkland trash bags, 36 jumbo rolls of Cottonelle toilet tissue, 12 rolls of Kirkland paper towels, 2 loaves of Nature’s Own bread, 4 packs of 320 Lysol wipes, 35 half-liters of Deer Park bottled water, 152 Ziploc gallon size freezer bags, and 2 48-ounce JIF creamy peanut butter jars, all for about $81.  We also held a bake sale to raise $565 for Christina Alvarez.  You may have read about her story on WRAL.  (http://www.wral.com/weather/story/9474504/)  She lost two nephews, a son, and an infant daughter when a tree crushed her home.  Donations can be made at the McDonald’s at the corner of Six Forks and Wake Forest roads.  In times like these, a high school classmate’s recent Facebook status comes to mind, “Instead of thinking about what you’re missing, try thinking about what you have that everyone else is missing.”  It is my hope that Kewana’s thoughts touch your heart and encourage you to give time, money, or needed items.

From Thursday until Saturday, Andrew and I enjoyed a mini vacation in Richmond, Virginia.  Andrew’s childhood friend, Quincy Latimore, plays minor league baseball and we always try to watch as many games as possible.  He plays for Altoona Curve, which happened to be the away team playing against the Richmond Flying Squirrels, that weekend.  (http://altoona.curve.milb.com/index.jsp?sid=t452)  Quincy is sweet enough to offer FREE tickets to his games, which we gratefully accepted for both Thursday and Friday nights.  I thought I was a damn good sport (no pun intended) on Friday night when we finally left the ball field at 11:30pm, after 5 hours and 15 innings, wearing a sweater and three light jackets (I could barely bend my arms, like Ralphie in “A Christmas Story”), holding an umbrella in 48 degree temps.  Ugh.  At least Altoona won…  While vacationing, we received 15% off of our meal at Quaker by simply showing our hotel room key and enjoyed complimentary breakfasts (including divine Earl Grey tea… mmmmm).  Admission to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts was FREE and I scored Sweet Thing’s birthday gift of Renoir greeting cards for $13.95 and an adorable bird mobile for the guest bedroom at $6.95.  (http://www.vmfa.state.va.us/Default.aspx)  We were super excited to find a Costco near our hotel, which saved us money on gas.  On our way home on Saturday, we stopped by downtown to attend Richmond’s Earth Day street festival, with live music and a gorgeous view from the top of the pedestrian bridge.

Some Things To Look Forward To:

Today 4/29 – Whole Foods One Day Sale – organic strawberries $1.99/lb  (www.wholefoodsmarket.com)

Today 4/29 – FREE Midnight showing of “Princess Bride” at NCSU’s Witherspoon Student Center  (http://www.ncsu.edu/cinema/index.html)

4/29-30 – 25th Annual NC Pickle Festival (Mt. Olive) – FREE admission  (www.ncpicklefest.org)

4/30 – Designer’s Downtown Market  (http://www.designersdowntownmarket.com/)

4/30 – 18th Annual Spring Daze (Cary) – FREE admission  (http://www.townofcary.org/Departments/Parks__Recreation___Cultural_Resources/events/festivals/springdaze.htm)

5/1 – American Tobacco’s “Explore… Create… Move” (Durham) – a 4 part series for kids featuring an expert leader and a theme – $5 registration fee  (http://www.wral.com/lifestyles/goaskmom/blogpost/9500062/)

5/1-8 – Sherwin Williams – 25% off paint  (www.sherwin-williams.com)

Through 5/2 – Lowe’s 4 for $10 Spring Essential Sale  (www.lowes.com)

5/2-3 – FREE 7pm and 9pm showings of “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers:  The Movie” at NCSU’s Witherspoon Student Center (http://www.ncsu.edu/cinema/index.html)

5/3 – $2 Try-It Tuesday Coreopsis Bangle project at Ornamentea  (www.ornamentea.com)

5/6-7 – North Carolina Symphony – $20 tickets to “Blues in the Night” – code SPRING*  (http://www.ncsymphony.org/?link=1&trid=380)

Through 5/8, $3.50 off any $10 purchase at Ulta (http://search.ulta.com/nav/marketing/couponwk1260640e/0?n=ulta&CID=ET_wk1311_Mon_SH_TStore_TN_x_x_x&ET_LID=Coupon&RID=358350579)

5/12-14 – North Carolina Symphony – $20 tickets to “Composer Portraits:  Mahler” – code SPRING*  (http://www.ncsymphony.org/?link=1&trid=380)

Every Thursday through 8/25 – Midtown Music Concert Series – FREE  (http://www.northhillsraleigh.com/)

20th of Every Month – Shop Local Raleigh – $20 on the 20th  (http://shoplocalraleigh.org/care/$20-onthe-$20th-Promotions)

Beginning Every Tuesday – Half price rolls at Carolina Sushi and Roll.  Check under “Events” for a list of the discounted items and also under “Coupon” for a buy one get one half off deal.  Tell Edward and Nahbi that Andrew and Amanda sent you.  C-dub and I dined their recently for only $11!  (www.carolinasushiandroll.com)

Borders Bargain Blowout – BOGO FREE  (www.borders.com)

Bed, Bath, & Beyond now offers wedding invitations and stationery, online.  FREE shipping on your FREE printed samples.  (http://invitations.bedbathandbeyond.com/index.jsp?utm_source=e&utm_medium=e&utm_term=e&utm_content=BridalInvitations&utm_name=BridalInvitations)

Vestique – fabulous styles at affordable prices.  Be sure to read “Our Story”.  (www.vestique.com)

Hamlin Drug Company – FREE deliveries to downtown Raleigh for prescriptions, which are by Segway  (www.hamlindrug.com)

Taste of Home – $5 cookbook sale  (http://www.shoptasteofhome.com/$5-Cookbooks/5CBK,default,sc.html)

Food Network Breast Cancer Merchandise – all items $5 or $10 – 100% of the net profit is donated  (http://www.kohls.com/kohlsStore/landingpages/foodnetwork_new/WomensCauseMerchandise.jsp?om_mid=_20110428_BCMerch)

FREE legal assistance by the North Carolina Bar Association to those affected by recent storms  (http://www.wral.com/news/local/noteworthy/story/9496873/)

$1.00 off any cream cheese tub at Bruegger’s  (http://www.wired-differently.com/bei/dlz/11/042511/nodup_x111005.jpg)

JC Penney – $10 off a $25 purchase  (http://f.jcpenneyem.com/i/2/95827765/welcomemain.html)

Happy Royal Wedding Day!  I am super excited to see Kate’s gown and to view the festivities on tv.  Get prepared by purchasing a big, fancy hat and perfecting your royal wedding guest name (Lady or Lord + your grandmother’s or grandfather’s first name + the name of your first pet + the name of the street where you grew up).

Regards,

Lady LaRoyce Midnight Rosin Hill

Put ‘Em Up! Put ‘Em Up!

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What a scary day with tornadoes, high winds, and severe thunderstorms.  Luckily, I saw only rain at my house, but the area around downtown Raleigh and Yonkers Rd was another story.  There, the bad weather brought with it downed power lines, uprooted trees, and even an overturned truck.  The Cowardly Lion in “The Wizard of Oz” said it best…  “Unusual weather we’re having, ain’t it?”

Last Sunday, Andrew and I celebrated 2 years together.  You can imagine my surprise when I received 2 dozen roses delivered to my office on Friday!  What a great way to start the weekend.  The surprises continued on Saturday with dinner at Second Empire and tickets to the new “Hop” movie.  My treats to him on Sunday were massages at Massage Envy for both of us and dinner at Kanki.  Who said you can’t find deals for special occasions?  You’ll be proud to know that the massages were a special introductory rate of $49.99 each for one hour and Kanki offered a 5 course meal for 2 for $39.99.  Sure, we don’t like to spend that kind of money for any ol’ meal, but that was a decent price for an anniversary meal of soup, salad, appetizer, entree, and dessert (plus the fake ketchup squirt and volcano onion).  Speaking of Kanki, triangle sushi chef and Japanese native Yuya Chiba of the Durham Kanki restaurant designed a special sushi roll to raise money for the earthquake victims in Japan.  Three triangle Kanki restaurants are selling the $10 rolls, with $5 going to the Japanese Relief Fund established by the United Nations Children’s Fund.  These restaurants are also selling the chef’s original artwork and T-shirts to raise money for the cause.

Spring is in the air and Easter is quickly approaching.  Are you ready?  Costco has 21 cute and delicious frosted spring sugar cookies for $3.89 versus 8-10 cookies of the same type at any typical grocery store for about the same price.  This would be a super easy way to contribute a festive dessert to an Easter gathering.  Just place the cookies on a pastel plate and sprinkle flour in your hair.  Voila!  Also at Costco are braided azalea trees (2.65 quarts) for $21.65.  With rich color options like red, white, light pink, and hot pink, you can’t go wrong.  Andrew’s grandmother loved the light pink kind for her birthday.  For Miss Morgan, I decided on Build-A-Bear’s Make-And-Play Hoppy Spring Bunny ($10 from Wal-Mart).  She’ll be able to sew, stuff, decorate, and dress her bunny with the included stuffing, safety needle, clothes, and accessories.

Well, so far the carpet paint cleaning failed!  Even with Justin’s steam cleaner and the special Lowes solution, the new red designs just aren’t budging.  At this point, I’m willing to try anything.  With Mama’s and Kendrick’s suggestions, I purchased from Wal-Mart Clorox ($1.22) and WD-40 ($3.27).  If the paint doesn’t come up, I’ll either have a white or black spot where the red once was.  Oh well, at least the accent colors are red, black, and white, already!

There will be no more decreased sale prices to report at the Borders central Raleigh store, as it has officially closed.  Luckily, the Six Forks Rd location is still fairly close to both my house and office, so the weekly coupons will still be appreciated.

Since you last heard from me, I redeemed a coupon for $1 off at Shish Kabob.  I enjoyed a FREE vanilla concrete with bananas and Reese’s peanut butter cups at Goodberry’s with my gift card.  I redeemed a Groupon coupon to The Pickled Onion ($10 for $20 worth of food).  Try the ahi tuna steak and enjoy the laid back atmosphere and sports trivia (http://thepickledonionrestaurant.com).  I received another $50 gift card from Blue Cross Blue Shield via their Points system.  I enjoyed a BOGO FREE meal deal at Cafe Carolina.  Thanks Donna!  Speaking of Cafe Carolina, try their new coconut cream and strawberries and cream cupcakes.  Also courtesy of Donna, I am now reading “All Your Worth: The Ultimate Lifetime Money Plan” by Elizabeth Warren and Amelia Warren Tyagi.  And I received the Dove men’s samples of deodorant and body wash that I registered online for several weeks ago.  Andrew reaps the benefit of that freebie!

As summer approaches, do you wish for fresh produce but can’t always make it to your local farmer’s market?  Check out The Produce Box at www.theproducebox.com.  Have your box delivered to your home or office, decide to skip a week or even an extended period of time, and choose the contents of your box.

I was actually able to listen to The Dave Ramsey Show this week.  I was running errands when it dawned on me that perhaps I could hear the man who provides such inspiration for this very blog.  Of course, William responded to my text in a nanosecond with “680A.M. 11am-2pm”.  This witty line stuck with me for the rest of the day: “The man who became a gazillionaire by being so cheap,” a reference to Dave by a colleague being interviewed by him.

Race for the Cure’s 15th anniversary challenge encourages participants to raise $300 for the cause to receive a $25 gift card to Belk.  So, hound your friends and family for some funds to “Save Second Base”.  (I couldn’t resist using this charming slogan.)  (www.komennctriangle.org)

Upcoming Events:

Today, 4/17, is the Wings Over Wayne FREE air show.  Andrew and I are prepared with his new chair in a bag from Wal-Mart for $9.88 (NCSU red, of course) and ear plugs (6 pairs for $1.97).  (www.wingsoverwayneairshow.com)

Also today, get a $6 Durham Bulls ticket for a Terrace Reserved or Diamond View seat and a Brightleaf hot dog.  Just use promo code “TWC” at checkout, online.  There is a limit of 8 tickets per household.  (www.dbulls.com)

At Johnny Carinos, take part in their Pasta Harvest and enjoy all you can eat pasta and salad for $8.99 per person.  (www.carinos.com)

4/17-18, Bruegger’s hosts a Tax Day Special of a baker’s dozen of bagels and 2 tubs of cream cheese for $10.40. (http://niuminc.com/brueggers/deals/bbtaxdayoffer_1040_exp041811/no_dup.jpg)

Through 4/18, Lowes has 2-quart perennials, 3 for $10.  (www.lowes.com)

4/18 is a Tax Relief Special at PF Chang’s, with 15% off all orders.  (www.pfchangs.com)

Like Chili’s on Facebook and get a coupon for one FREE appetizer or dessert per table on 4/18.  (www.facebook.com)

On 4/18 at participating locations, Cinnabon will be giving out two FREE bites to each customer from 6-8pm.  (www.cinnabon.com)

In honor of tax season, Office Depot is welcoming all customers to make copies of their 2010 tax returns, FREE, anytime through Monday, 4/18.  (www.officedepot.com)

With Maggie Moo’s Sundae Stimulus, all customers get a FREE mini sundae from 3 – 6pm on 4/18. The freebie being handed out is a Crumb Cake Fundae, which consists of cinnamon ice cream, cinnamon cake, caramel sauce, nuts, and whipped cream.  (www.maggiemoos.com)

While not tied directly to tax season, 4/16-24 just happens to be National Parks Week, when admission is FREE to all parks and monuments that normally charge fees. Some of your tax money goes to funding these parks, so here’s your chance to enjoy them without having to pay more at the gate.  (www.nps.gov)

McCormick & Schmick’s offers $10.40 “Tax Relief Certificates” to guests dining in the bar on 4/18. Special entrees are priced at $10.40, too.  (www.mccormickandschmicks.com)

Through 4/18 at Snapfish, buy one custom photo book and get 2 FREE.  Use the code MOMMYBOOKS at checkout.  Also, through 4/20, spend $25 and save $10.40 using code TAXDAY at your online checkout.  (www.snapfish.com)

Ornamentea’s Try-It Tuesday class on 4/19 features Fabulous Floral Earrings, for just $2.  (www.ornamentea.com)

Now through 5/12, Barnes & Noble’s latest offer is to buy 2 paperbacks, get the 3rd FREE.  Selected titles only.  (www.barnesandnoble.com)

The Kids Bowl Free program starts 5/1.  This program allows 2 FREE games of bowling per child per day and lasts throughout the summer.  (www.kidsbowlfree.com)

At 2pm on 5/7 is the Throne of Fire Release Party at Borders.  Kids ages 8-12 are invited to celebrate the new Rick Riordan book with a FREE Lego Pharaoh’s Quest building set.  (www.borders.com)

Vinos Finos & Picadas offers FREE wine tasting every Tuesday night from 5:30-7pm.  (www.vinosfinosypicadas.com)

On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays at Mirage, buy one sushi roll, get one FREE.  (www.mirageraleigh.com)

Each week, Toys R Us holds FREE events for babies and older children, alike.  (www.toysrus.com)

Each month, Barnes & Noble offers an online story time.  Currently the story being read online is “The Very Hungry Caterpillar”, read by the book’s author Eric Carle.  Beginning 5/3, the story read online will be “Charlie the Ranch Dog”.  (www.barnesandnoble.com)

Whew!  Lots for you to plan and do!  If I don’t post again before Sunday, may you find lots of freebies and discounts in your basket.  And don’t forget to stock up on half price chocolates on Monday, 4/25.  Happy Easter!

Unbeweavable

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Is it the pollen that’s making everyone so crazy?!  Just this week, I spilled coffee in the car and put my contacts in the wrong eyes.  If this wasn’t bad enough, there were pigs stopping traffic on I-40 and, now, Donald Trump is toying with the idea of running for President.  Unbeweavable…

Pollen or not, the warmer weather has gotten me in the mood for butterflies and flowers.  So, I rummaged through the bins in the attic and found my darling Easter egg tree and rabbit that talks and moves its cottonball tail.  Just in time for spring, I signed up to receive FREE “Creative Ideas” magazines and various newsletters (e.g. weekend projects, energy solutions) through Lowes.  (www.lowes.com/subscribe)

I finally visited the new Whole Foods on Six Forks Rd and fell in love.  What other store can brag this way?  “Water in our toilets comes from our 10,600 gallon cistern, which harvests rainwater.”  My family rolls their eyes even more now that I have ventured further into greenness by trying my first organic/green glass cleaner, toilet bowl cleaner, shampoo, and facial cleanser.  When you’re there, grab some 2% Fage yogurt and get an easy 17 grams of protein!  And say hello to Dwayne with the ponytail.  But skip the bacon and egg Easter candy – a chocolate egg with a bacon and chocolate truffle center.  I can’t give my honest opinion since my anti-pig stance prevents me from tasting the stuff, but even my cousin Tommy, who owns a bacon wallet and bacon wall clock, turned his snout up to it.  The hot bar and salad bar offer tons of choices for $7.99 per pound.  Monty suggests getting no bone-in meat and to limit starches, as these increase the weight and price of the plate.  But don’t leave without a white chocolate raspberry brownie.

Still chipping away at the ol’ consumer debt, like with my federal income tax refund, I put all of my state income tax refund towards my credit card with the smallest balance.  I am proud to say that the smallest balance is now under $1k!  I just might have to crack open a bottle of Three Wishes to celebrate!  (Three Wishes wine is carried by Whole Foods at $2.99 per bottle.)

Recently, I used a manufacturer’s coupon for $1.50 off of Tide laundry detergent, redeemed an Asian Grill Groupon coupon ($10 for $20 worth of food), and enjoyed a FREE appetizer at The Flying Biscuit Cafe.  I was unable to use a Filtrate coupon at Target because they didn’t have the size air filter I needed, but Filtrate filters were on sale $2 off AND a register coupon printed for $3 off a Filtrate filter.  Imagine my luck!  Nikki, Dave, Andrew, and I were able to redeem coupons for $1.50 off our dinner buffets at Sweet Tomatoes.

I finally tackled the organize-the-pantry project.  I purchased from Walmart three plastic containers – $2.64 for the large one and $1.97 for two smaller ones – to separate light bulbs and batteries.  No more cardboard boxes and bulky packages.  My daily planner was bursting at the seams with coupons, so I invested in a purple expanding file to house them.  I found this at Walmart, also, for $4.47.

Fun Facts:

Dave Ramsey is now on Twitter!  (www.twitter.com/daveramsey)

Twisted Fork offers BOGO desserts every Friday night.  (www.thetwistedfork.com)

Borders Central Raleigh’s store (Six Forks Rd and Wake Forest Rd intersection) Final Days Sale is still underway.  Prices have been slashed 60-80%.

Got an extra $25?  Check out Kiva – a nonprofit organization that connects people around the world through lending to alleviate poverty.  (www.kiva.org)

LL Bean offers FREE shipping – no minimum price and no expiration date.  (www.llbean.com)

Get $5 off of a “Real Simple” magazine subscription (through Bed, Bath, and Beyond).  (https://subscription.realsimple.com/storefront/subscribe-to-real-simple/site/sm-bbbem5offb0411.html?xid=bbb4.5email5dollarsoff&link=1003290)

Borders now has cuddle toys made from soy.  Just in time for Earth Day, buy a Greenzy’s stuffed animal and the Arbor Day Foundation will plant a tree in your honor.  (www.greenzys.com)

During the month of April, kids 12 and under eat FREE everyday from 4-10pm at IHOP.  With the purchase of an adult entree, receive one FREE kid’s meal from the Just for Kids menu.

The Midtown Farmer’s Market is now open (April – November).  Enjoy local entertainment while purchasing from local farmers every Saturday from 8am-12pm.  (www.northhillsfarmersmarket.com)

I mentioned in my last post that Sherwin Willliams would have another paint sale 4/8-10.  Unlike last time, this sale is for 40% off (versus 30%)!

Through 4/10, get a coupon for $5 off of a $40 purchase when you like CVS on Facebook.

Harris Teeter has one pound of strawberries on sale for $1.25 through 4/12.

Don’t fee like slaving in the kitchen on Easter (4/24)?  The Flying Biscuit Cafe is open from 7am-10pm.  The menu offers something for everyone at reasonable prices.

Fun Events:

On 4/8-10, WRAL’s SmartShopper (Faye Prosser) will be conducting two classes at The Southern Women’s Show – Let’s Bake a Meal Deal and Cut Grocery Bills.  Each class will be taught on all three days during the event.  (www.southernshows.com/wra)

Logan’s Trading Company is holding Logan’s Spring Fling on 4/9.  There will be promotions throughout the store (buy any 3 packages of bulbs and receive 25% off; Easter egg surprises from 11-2pm with Logan’s bucks, coupons, and candy) and FREE classes – Square Foot Gardening at 9am and Japanese Maples at 3pm.  (www.logantrd.com)

The 13th Annual Lebanese Festival occurs 4/9-10 at the NC State Fairgrounds.  Admission is $2 for adults and FREE for children age 6 and under.  The Arabian Night Party on Saturday night is FREE for all.  (www.tlanc.org/documents/lebFestival2011_UPDATED.pdf)

Ornamentea’s Try-It-Tuesday $2 class on 4/12 features a Domed Disc Necklace.

On The Border has begun its Cinco de Mayo Countdown Party, unveiling a new, introductory-priced drink each Thursday in April from 4-7pm.  Tonight’s drink was a CoronaRita – a frozen House Margarita infused with an ice-cold Coronita.  (www.ontheborder.com)

The 2011 Fourth Annual Planet Earth Celebration is on 4/16 from 11am-5pm.  This FREE event is hosted by Burt’s Bees and the North Carolina Museum of Natural Science.  (www.raleighearthday.com)

Subway’s Customer Appreciation Day is also 4/16.  From 7am-10pm, buy one footlong sub, get one FREE.

4/16 is the North Carolina ‘Cuegrass Festival.  The Pit sponsors the event with barbeque and bluegrass music.  Your $5 admission fee is donated to North Carolina farmers via Animal Welfare Approved (AWA).  (http://cuegrass.com)

On 4/17, Target hosts its Earth Day Exclusive – a FREE reusable bag (with purchase) to the first one million guests.  When you use a Target reusable bag 10 times, you’ll keep 25 plastic bags out of landfills.

At Starbucks on 4/22, bring in your own travel cup and receive a FREE coffee or tea as an Earth Day promotion.

4/29-5/1 is the 2011 Fayetteville Dogwood Festival.  To enter the festival is FREE, with individual event prices varying.  (www.faydogwoodfestival.com)

The Smithfield Ham & Yam Festival is on 5/7.  Like the Dogwood Festival, entering is FREE, with individual event prices varying.  (www.hamandyam.com)

I’m hoping for a fabulous weekend, beginning with waking up Saturday morning to find the federal government still operating.  I’ll be busy attempting to remove the high heel shoe shaped paint stain on the carpet in the master bedroom.  The walls look amazing in their new Showstopper Red, but the spotted tan carpet is questionable.  Oh well, I can always buy a rug!

Spring Cleaning

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Wasn’t it Sheryl Crow who sang that a change would do you good?  Well, Sheryl would be proud of me.  Since I last wrote, I’ve had my hair cut and dyed, began reading “Oprah”, started painting the master bedroom Showstopper red (two out of four walls), and changed my blog theme to “Bueno”.  That’s my version of spring cleaning!

I’ve still been pinching my pennies.  I found a “Jungle Babies” book at Barnes and Noble for $4.88, just in time for Jeremiah’s birthday.  (Barnes and Noble is having great sales on Easter books for children.)  I tried Chipotle for the first time ever with Chavon and, boy, was I impressed – great food at great prices and super healthy.  (www.chipotle.com)  Did you hear about the new Whole Foods store opening in North Raleigh at 8710 Six Forks Rd?  I signed up to receive email newsletters from them.  Check out the “What’s on sale?” icon in the top, right-hand corner of the local store’s website.  (www.wholefoodsmarket.com)  I tried Tijuana Flats with Grace Ann and have gone back twice since!  I enjoyed BOGO coupons 2 of the 3 times.  Think of a cross between Moe’s speedy service and Armadillo Grill’s trendy atmosphere.  (www.tijuanaflats.com)  Andrew and I enjoyed a FREE appetizer at Brixx, a BOGO deal at El Rodeo Grill, and $6 off at Shish Kabob.  Brixx offers an awesome late night special of all appetizers and pizzas BOGO when ordered after 10pm Sunday through Thursday, and after 11pm on Friday and Saturday nights.  (www.brixxpizza.com)  I also redeemed a coupon for a FREE fruit and maple oatmeal cup at McDonald’s.  Through Living Social, I donated $5 to the Red Cross Japan Earthquake Pacific Tsunami fund and Living Social matched my donation 100%, totaling $10.  And, just today, I purchased from Lowe’s a Schlage doorknob/deadbolt combo at 30% off.  Andrew purchased a wireless router for $49.99 ($10 off) at Target, which will save $11.95 per month on the Time Warner Cable bill as a home networking charge.

Speaking of painting, Sherwin Williams runs a sale on paints and stains about once every month and a half or two months.  This past weekend, I was able to get 30% off.  Remember, you can buy paint when it is on sale and have it injected with the chosen color at a later date, in order to get the sale price.  The next sale will be April 8-10.  (www.sherwin-williams.com)

Ulta is offering a BOGO MicroZone Skin treatment through 4/2.  $20, 20 minutes, immediate results.  (www.ulta.com)

Like Old Navy on Facebook and get a coupon for 15% off a single item purchased through 4/7.  Also, like Suave Professionals on Facebook and receive a coupon for a FREE Suave Professionals product.  You’ll receive the coupon in the mail in 6-8 weeks.  (www.facebook.com)

Borders Final Week to Save – with the central Raleigh store closing (404-101 E. Six Forks Rd), get 50-70% off everything in the store.  At all other Borders stores that are remaining open, 4/16 is the Springtacular special kids’ event for children ages 3-8.  There will be FREE storytime, games, and crafts.  Show your Borders eReading app and get a FREE small brewed coffee in the cafe.  (www.borders.com)

The Race for the Cure registration fee will be $25 through 4/1.  This is part of the early bird special, which expires on 4/2.  Once expired, the fee increases to $30.  Join Team Pink Floyd and help save some tatas!  (www.komennctriangle.org)

Get a free men’s Dove sample delivered in 4 weeks.  (http://see.walmart.com/dovemencare)

Sign up for the new Living Social Raleigh-Durham Family edition to receive deals on family fun outings such as visits to museums, zoos, and aquariums.  (www.livingsocial.com)

We all love Trader Joe’s, but now that spring is in the air (well, it was and hopefully it will be back soon), stop by for amazing deals on gorgeous flowers – just a few examples are $4.99 for cut tulips and $2.99 for potted begonias.  (www.traderjoes.com)

For all you folks with kids, Barnes & Noble is offering a grand deal on “Parents” magazine – a one year subscription (12 issues) for just $1.  Enter code K4M8W9D at checkout.  (www.barnesandnoble.com)

Continuing to support those affected by the Japan crisis and those interested in staying up-to-date, Time Warner Cable is allowing the FREE viewing of channel 880 TV Japan to digital customers through 3/31.  (www.timewarnercable.com)

Shop for a good cause…  For every pair of shoes purchased from TOMS, a pair of new shoes will be donated to a child in need.  This is part of their “One for One” movement.  (www.toms.com)

Too sick to leave home?  Kerr Drug now delivers prescriptions for FREE.  (www.kerrdrug.com)

In the mood for some Italian food, but don’t have much cash?  Hungry Howie’s has 10 inch subs for $6.99 and salads for $4.99.  And, they are open until 3:00am on Friday and Saturday nights – just in case you stay up late playing a mean game of Uno.  (www.hungryhowies.com)

Love coffee?  Check out It’s a Grind.  With fun names like Nutty Cow, their drinks are tasty and cheaper than our beloved Starbucks.  (www.itsagrind.com)

In a recent issue of “Reader’s Digest”, there was a list of popular gadgets and the 2011 price prediction.  Not seeing these amounts yet?  Wait a little while and pay less!  Blu-ray Player – $39; Kindle eBook Reader – $99; 55-inch HDTV – $599; Full-size Digital SLR Camera – $299; 15- to 16-inch Dual-core Laptop – $199; Portable GPS – $40; and iPhone 3GS – $49

Lowes feeds kids’ curiosity with FREE Build and Grow clinics every 2nd and 4th Saturday of each month.  (www.lowes.com)

Feeling creative?  Stop by Ornamentea today between 10am and 8pm to give the Lovely Leather Necklace a whirl.  (www.ornamentea.com)

So, as the weather finally warms up, think about what to plant in your garden.  No yard?  No problem.  Many veggies grow nicely in pots on decks or porches.

Health.com recently rated the Healthiest Fast Food Restaurants.  The list includes Panera, Jason’s Deli, Noodles and Company, Chipotle, and… McDonald’s??  Yep.  McDonald’s is making changes to the menu to make it easier on the ol’ waistband.  I am excited to learn that so many of our inexpensive favorites made the cut!

Hot Pink Gnome Pajamas

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 As I sit on the couch in my hot pink gnome pajamas, I am ready to catch some ZZZZs, but I simply cannot go to sleep without sharing all of the deals that will be available to you tomorrow.  The North Carolina Symphony (http://ncsymphony.org) is offering a BOGO deal on Copland and Rachmaninoff orchestra tickets.  You’ll get a FREE Starbucks coffee at Barnes and Noble (www.barnesandnoble.com) simply for trying out the new Nook Color.  From 9-11am at participating Target stores, kids can enjoy a FREE Dr. Seuss storytime in honor of his birthday.  Home Depot offers a FREE kids’ workshop from 9am-12pm and Lowe’s offers a FREE Build and Grow kids’ workshop at 10am.  Borders is also hosting a FREE birthday party – this one for Elmo at 2pm.  There will be lots of games, stories, and music for the kids.  If you need a snack after all of the fun, stop by Food Lion and pick up some red seedless grapes at 99 cents per pound.  Or if you are looking for more of a meal or relaxing drink, check out Raleigh Specials Tonight (www.raleighspecialstonight.com) for more deals.  While you are online, don’t forget to check out the “Your Ticket to Savings” section in each month’s Time Warner Cable email newsletter.  You are allowed to choose and print 4 discounts per month.  Then, go to Facebook and like Soy Joy to receive a free bar in the mail.  Sure, spring is around the corner, but the nights are still a little nippy.  Snag your little one a Disney fleece throw for $5.99 (regular price $19.50).

On Wednesday, I read that if you have a Borders discount card, Quail Ridge Books (www.quailridgebooks.com) will honor it with a FREE Quail Ridge Readers’ Club discount card good for one year.  Also on Wednesday, I had my yearly eye exam.  I can’t believe how excited I was to pay $50 towards my bill by using a Visa gift card (a Christmas gift).  Of all the trendy things I could have purchased, and I made such an adult-like decision.  Yay me!

On Thursday, I completed an online survey from my eye appointment the previous day and received a $10 gift certificate towards my next purchase.  (Thank goodness for this because I still have to buy contacts!)  I used a coupon at the local Kroger on my lunch break and got 3 Secret deodorants for the price of 2.  I scored another FREE rental at Redbox by liking them on Facebook.  I’ll have to let you know what I think of “Taken”.  After a pizza and martini catch up session with Chavon, I was surprised with a Queen’s Greatest Hits CD.  Thanks Andrew!  It’s the little things…

On Friday, I learned about the Snapfish deal – order at least $5 in photo gifts and receive a $25 gift certificate to Restaurant.com.  This deal ends on Monday (2/28).

And here are some things to look forward to…  On March 2 at GAP, buy any pants and get any top FREE.  March 4 is Free Fryday at Chick-fil-A.  Come in from 2-4pm to get a FREE medium order of waffle fries when you mention that you’d like to try the new Heinz Dip & Squeeze.

I’ll leave you with another subject that is near and dear to me – health.  Recently, I read an article on 15 ways to burn more fat.  Try to add a few of these to your lifestyle and see if you notice any change in your waistline:

1.  Don’t diet – Eat more nutrient-dense food

2.  Go to bed earlier

3.  Eat more protein

4.  Go organic when you can

5.  Get up, stand up – During long period of sitting, take periodic standing breaks

6.  Drink cold water – The body has to work harder to heat the water

7.  Eat the heat (peppers fire up your metabolism)

8.  Eat breakfast

9.  Drink coffee or tea

10.  Eat more fiber (fruits and veggies)

11.  Eat more iron-rich foods (shellfish, lean meats, beans, spinach)

12.  Get more vitamin D (tuna, eggs)

13.  Drink milk

14.  Eat watermelon

15.  Stay hydrated