Tuesday, November 27, 2007

New Camera Cord

I've finally purchased a new camera cord, so I should be back up and posting pictures soon. I think I'll be starting with pictures of a recent baby gift, some Christmas packaging, and Christmas decorations! This will happen on Wednesday or Thursday.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

$20 off of $50 at Shoebuy


Paypal is having some good holiday promotions if you checkout at certain merchants using their system. You can view the list here. I think the best deal is $20 off of a $50 purchase at Shoebuy. I actually needed some shoes: shoes for exercising, that is. Saucony makes great shoes that fit my weird feet perfectly. My previous Sauconys (Sauconies?) were in bad shape. I bought these Grid Excursions for $44.95. However, I had some money left in my Paypal account from taking surveys and mystery shopping, so I actually only paid about $2 out of pocket. Gotta love these deals!

Monday, November 19, 2007

How to Spend $4.14 at J.C. Penney for 4 Items

Step One: Scan the store for any of those green 75% off signs. Hint: Look up and look for the green!

Step Two: Locate a cute printed hoodie shirt for $1.97, a black striped button down shirt (part of a gift) for $3.97, a dark denim pencil skirt for $3.97, and a brown pencil skirt for $3.97.

Step Three: Locate a cash register upstairs in the undergarments section where it is not busy. Smile when the clerk notes that your items are a great deal. Produce a $10 off any purchase coupon and smile more when the clerk notes that the items are really a good deal now. Fail to notice that the clerk has left the INK security tag on the shirt you intend to give as a gift.

Step Four: Pay via your debit card because you had to use a MasterCard for this coupon. Laugh in the face of the credit industry. Note that your receipt says that you saved $120.12 on your purchase today. Guffaw at the thought of spending full price at J.C. Penney.

Step Five: Arrive home (an hour away from the store) and note that the shirt you intend to give for a gift (along with a giftcard to Express) still has the stupid ink-releasing security tag on it. Try to pry it off for a while before realizing that is REALLY not a good idea. Decide you'll figure out what to do about it later.

Step Six: Lament the fact that your camera cord is not working and that you are unable to show the world your great purchase. Blog about it with words only.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Lessons Learned From NC Trip

1) Flying is fun!
2) Finding a baggie of marijuana in your hotel room will net you one free night's stay + a $25 credit.
3) People in North Carolina are really nice.
4) You can save a lot of money on food by eating breakfast, lunch, and (if possible) dinner at the conference.
5) I love integrated health care.
6) I am VERY conflicted about what to do/where to work next year.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Last Post of the Week

I won't be posting anymore this week because I am staying the night with my mama tomorrow so that I can get a super duper early start on Wednesday morn. I shall be back next week!

Until then, are you checking...

Frugal Village forums for encouragement/inspiration?

Slickdeals and Pinching Your Pennies for great deals (especially with Christmas around the corner)?

Organized Christmas forums for great ideas?

Well? Get going!

Flying!

Believe it or not, I have spent 25 years on this Earth without flying. That will change Wednesday when I fly to North Carolina for a conference. I'm pretty jazzed about going, but this should be an interesting experience for sure. ;) You know, with my fear of heights and all. Luckily, my fear of heights only happens when I'm not strapped in!

"You should just go ahead and drug yourself [with prescription meds]. If you're going to crash, you don't need to know that anyway. There's nothing you can do about it."
-Encouraging words from Auntie T.

Conversations About Money

Have you ever noticed that conversations about money are awkward at best, socially unacceptable at worst? Since I am still not exactly making the big bucks, these rules do not yet seem to apply to myself and to my friends. I have a feeling that the time to discuss money will soon be over with. I think we do a great disservice to ourselves by not discussing it. Especially since most people have no idea what to do with it!


A couple of weekends ago I went to visit my friend H who is on internship in Nebraska. I rode most of the way to Nebraska with H's sister M. I have noticed that these girls seem to be pretty smart about money. They are not diehard frugalites, but they do like to get the best deals on things and both use coupons for clothes shopping on a regular basis. M can be downright tightwaddish at times with some things (you know that makes me proud!), but both will spend the money for things they find important. Both also have savings accounts, a concept which seems to have escaped my generation. Both are younger than I am (H is 24 and M is 20). Both received what Stanley and Danko, authors of The Millionaire Next Door, term "economic outpatient care" from their parents in the form of school tuition. However, both work regularly and work long hours and have done so since age 16. Neither are spoiled brats or expect things to be handed to them even though they have been given certain things from their parents. Both are pleasant and fun to be around.



In the car ride up, M and I got to talking about someone who had inferred that she is a "princess" because they felt she had too much handed to her (which, by the way, is not true). This led to discussion about money and savings. I asked M about savings and if their parents taught them about money. She told me that their parents expected them to save money from a very young age. She also told me that their father would (and still does) regularly contribute a small amount to their savings accounts. Their father also taught them to not keep excess money in checking when it could be drawing interest in savings. M told me that they were also expected to have jobs and help support themselves.



Later that weekend, H and I got to talking about budgets, savings, and our current salaries. I had asked her how much she is putting into savings because I have no idea how much I should be saving right now. We make about the same amount currently, but her expenses are more than mine. This is mostly due to higher rent and having to drive quite a bit for her internship with a lower level of expense reimbursement than what I'm getting. H expressed some concern that her living expenses are eating up her paychecks with little left over to save. I was very impressed by this since most people my age DO NOT HAVE any savings to speak of, and most are WAY worse off financially than H is. And yet she is concerned! She had a written budget worked out before internship began, but they split her checks differently causing her budget to be basically invalid. H noted that she hoped to be able to save her expense checks once they started being deposited to her account.


The lessons I learned:
1) Talk to your children about money from a young age.
2) There are ways to provide things for your children with them remaining grateful, unspoiled people.
3) Teach them the importance of savings.


I really want to start talking to more people about money. I think the lessons learned would be invaluable!

Friday, November 02, 2007

From the Desk of Princess Ivy: Stupid Trips!


Greetings blog readers! I have appropriated The Human's blog today to give you a glimpse of what she is really like. On this blog she pretends to be so happy and frugal-minded, blah, blah, blah. Nonsense! She regularly forces me against my will into some type of carrying device and then takes me places that I DO NOT WANT to go (Well, I do sort of like the home of The Human's mother. She plays with me and pets me a lot.). My revenge against The Human has been to poop as much as possible everytime she puts me into this carrying device. Because of this, she has had to get rid of one soft carrying device and now is putting me in a larger hard-sided carrying device. I haven't been able to poop in this one yet because The Human does not allow me to eat right before getting into it. Just wait, Human. It is coming!
Today she forced me into the carrying device and took me to see another female Human. That Human forced me to stand on a table while she went to get some sort of instrument to peer into my ears. I jumped off the table and tried to hide in a corner, but the other Human pulled me back out and put me on the table again. I could tell that she was used to dealing with my species, so I decided not to put up a fight. The other female Human looked in my ears and combed my fur and listened to my heart. She told The Human that I am healthy except for "ear mites" and "fleas", whatever those are. The Human was not excited about this news, and the other Human gave her some suspicious looking items. When we got home, The Human held me down and squirted one of these items into my ears! I tried to shake the liquid out of my ears and into The Human's face, but I think she ducked in time. The Human then muttered something about it being "seven fifty per ear" and that I would feel better when it was over.
The Human had to "write a check" for quite a bit of money, and that pleased me greatly. If she is going to force me against my will, I will punish her by costing her money! Yes, indeed. I will cost her as much as possible.
I have to go now. The Human is coming with another suspicious item to squirt on me.