Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thrifty Tuesday

This week I couldn't help but brag about my trip to Walgreens on Thanksgiving morning. Yup, you read that right--I got to Walgreens right as they opened and waited in the car as they opened the doors. There were actually people waiting outside, but I'm pretty sure most of them were waiting for some great deals on toys. I, on the other hand, came for toothpaste, deodorant, razors, & body wash!

My trip started out with a bit of drama as I was lead astray by another customer, but my coupon guru friend Megan showed up and we got back on track. I think I ended up checking out about 9 times in my visit...but it was so worth it!

Here's my loot...3 50 ft rolls of Hallmark wrapping paper, 3 tubes of Crest Pro White toothpaste, 3 tubes of Colgate Total toothpaste, 3 bottles of Oil of Olay body wash, 6 Right Guard deodorant, 2 packages Bic Soleil disposable razors, 2 Nivea men's shaving cream, 1 Skintimate shaving cream, 1 Edge Shaving Cream, 1 Vaseline men's lotion, 2 Colgate toothbrushes, 5 Reese's trees, 1 Hershey tree, & 3 red taper candles. All for....a little over $12!!! And, I have $4.50 in Register Rewards that I plan to use this week to start off my spending! Basically, that means that I got over $96 in product for around $8.00!!

That was definitely worth getting up and missing some of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade! As I've mentioned before, I'm not normally a Black Friday shopper but I can see how people get into it! I actually had a blast for the hour or so I was in Walgreens---most of which was time spent standing in line with some other crazy couponers! We were all in such good spirits and just hanging out watching as everyone checked out multiple times & got an incredibly amount of stuff for pennies.

Now, I'm sure you're thinking...but she already has 3 deodorant in storage & 5 tubes of toothpaste & multiple bottles of body wash. Well, this trip was more for the fun of it than for actually stocking up for myself. I did keep a few things, the wrapping paper, the candles, some of the shaving cream, & the toothbrushes...but most everything else went in a sack that is now sitting in our office ready to be donated.

Our small group is helping to adopt a family who recently lost everything they have in a fire...most of that stuff will be going to them. I don't say this to toot my own horn, only to say that there are other benefits to couponing. Once I have my stockpile, if I can take a few moments to cut coupons or read weekly ads to get items for free or even for just a few pennies I take advantage of the sales and donate to our local food pantry. Christmas is the perfect time of year as all the food baskets are being distrubuted, but those families receiving the baskets need these items year round, not just at Christmastime.

Look for those opportunties to help others out, it will definitely make your heart soar as you practice generosity! And who knows, you might just change someone's life with a small simple gift showing God's love...

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving Weekend 2010

Well, there isn't much else to say about this weekend except for INCREDIBLE!!!! These past four days have been full of friends, family, yummy food, and lots of relaxation. It's always been great going to Michigan for Thanksgiving, but this was certainly a nice change of pace...to stay home for Thanksgiving and play host to Hubby's parents as they came to Missouri this year.

Thursday was obviously the big day as 35ish people headed to my parent's house and gathered together as family & friends. Hubby's parents joined us and I felt so incredibly blessed & lucky to have them there.
My dad, my mother-in-law, & my grandpa getting everything ready for the table. I had the pleasure of helping my mom & dad out quite a bit with the preparation which was definitely a fun but busy time!

With our family, we traditionally always have some sort of craft for the ladies to enjoy while the men lounge on the couch watching some football. It's ranged from wreaths to button trees to claypot angels, but it's always something and always a good time!

This year my mom took inspiration from the latest Food Network magazine and made gingerbread men & women for us to decorate. She had all sorts of candy and some royal icing for us to get creative with....and did we ever!

Our inspiration...let's just say the magazine artists are much neater, but they don't hold a candle to our fun!

Me with Mr. & Mrs. Gingerbread

My entire gingerbread family

The group of ladies who hung around until the end with our gingerbread people

A closeup of the gingerbread people...we had lots of creativity flowing!

It was such a fabulous Thanksgiving day, and truly made me so grateful for all the blessings in my life. I came home and crashed & was very glad that I wasn't one of the crazy shoppers headed out early Friday morning.

Friday was the designated "Deck the Halls" day. Hubby brought in all of my Christmas storage boxes and I unloaded and decorated while Hubby finished up the lights outside.
It literally looked like a Christmas store exploded on my kitchen island! More on the decorating later this week...

Friday night was movie night with Hubby's parents & his sister, her husband, and our two nephews--chili for dinner & Toy Story 3 with some homemade popcorn. It was a fabulous evening complete with a family photo shoot!
Hubby & his nephews who think the world of Uncle Nicky!

Hunter & I--I love this kid!

Me & my nephews, Hunter & Jackson

All of us, I think the first official family photo with all 8 of us...plus Mr. Monkey & Santa

And of course we had to have a goofy shot...seriously, what am I doing? I love Jackson's face in this photo; I seriously think he might have been terrified!

And another goofy shot...love this family & so blessed to be a part of them!

Movie night was a huge success...I think we'll definitely have to plan more of those in the future!

Hubby & I spent the rest of the weekend lounging around & seriously just taking some time for ourselves. We decorated our tree, did some Christmas shopping~and also a new pair of riding boots for myself, and went to the movies to watch Morning Glory (I definitely recommend for a light-hearted comedy). Today we relaxed some more, like we needed to lounge anymore!

Of course tomorrow it's back to business for another work week...but I think I can be ready after this fabulous four-day weekend!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

So much to be thankful for...Thanksgiving 2010

Each year I'm always so incredibly humbled by all of the blessings I have in my life...and this year is certainly no different.

~I'm thankful for my salvation. For my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who died upon a cross so a sinner like me could spend eternity in heaven.

~I'm thankful for my husband. The man that God brought into my life to truly complete me--to be strong when I'm weak, funny when I'm sad, & realistic when I'm freaking out.

~I'm thankful for my family. This year, for the first time since Hubby & I got married, we will be spending Thanksgiving with my family. I've always been thrilled to spend Thanksgiving in Michigan with Hubby's parents, but this year they have come here and will actually be spending Thanksgiving with my huge, crazy family. It's going to be a fabulous day.

~I'm thankful for Bogey. Even at 2 1/2 years old, he still never ceases to amaze me and I'm so thankful for the smiles that he brings into my life. I just love my furry son!

~I'm thankful for my job. I work with some fabulous ladies & also get to spend most days working beside my dad and having lunch with my mom. What more could a girl ask for?

~I'm thankful for our church & our small group. These people who provide such fabulous spiritual support are true gifts from God. I'm blessed more and more each week by these individuals who lift us up when we need support.

Life is pretty incredible right now & I'm just so in awe when I look at all the blessings surrounding me each day.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thrifty Tuesday

Well, with it being the week of Black Friday, most of you might assume that my Thrifty Tuesday would be how Hubby & I will be heading out at midnight on Thanksgiving and spending hours fighting the crowds, hoping for the deal of all deals, & using all my knowledge to cram all of my Christmas shopping into a 12 hour period.


Let me just say, that whole scenario couldn't be farther from the truth. Hubby & I are NOT Black Friday shoppers; neither of our families have every participated in this tradition and while the crazies will be out scouring for deals...I'll be sleeping deeply, hoping to awake having overcome the food coma induced from taking in too much turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, rolls, pumpkin cheesecake, etc. etc. etc.


With all that said, I can admit that I'm already watching the Internet for some great Black Friday deals online along with the Cyber Monday deals. I've got some items already put in my shopping cart at various places hoping for a great coupon code or deal! In addition, Walgreens is having a pretty incredible sale starting on Thanksgiving morning which includes items like toothpaste, deodorant, body wash, and razors...all basically for free because you get 100% of the price back in Jingle Cash (which are register rewards for the holiday season). I actually have plans to pay Walgreens a visit first thing on Thanksgiving morning to make sure my deals all work out.

And...just to include a great deal on this Thrifty Tuesday--be watching Amazon, they are having some great deals on magazines and movies! Hubby & I bought the Blindside for $3.99 last night and I know that today they have a great sale on the Harry Potter Boxed Set (1-6). The widescreen set is only $23.99 for the entire set!

Happy Shopping Everyone!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

An Unknown Child & Finnicky Bread

If I had to pick one word to describe my weekend it would be flour, or maybe milk, or maybe yeast...but more on that in a bit.

For the most part Hubby & I had a plan-free weekend, minus one big obstacle on Saturday afternoon...another section of the CPA exam for Hubby. However, that was only Saturday afternoon so we were able to have a pretty fabulous weekend otherwise!

Friday evening we voted for dinner out & some shopping for our shoeboxes! Our church participates in the Operation Christmas Child campaign each year & while the deadline snuck up on us last year, we weren't about to push it aside this year! We headed to Walmart & first hit up the storage aisle for our shoebox...and then it was time to fill it full of all sorts of goodies. We both chose the oldest age group & I just hope the kids...wherever they are & whatever circumstances they are going through...will feel some love & joy from an unknown follower of Christ from all the way around the world.

Our church took a moment during the service yesterday to bless all the boxes that were being sent out from our congregation. It was quite a moving experience to see all those boxes placed at the front of our sanctuary and ready to be loved & enjoyed by whatever child might receive them.

We filled ours with hygiene items, games, nail polish for the girl, & Legos for the boy....and of course some hard candy just to put a smile on their face!

And now for the word of the weekend...FLOUR. But first a bit of background--a few months ago my in-laws decided to come to Missouri for Thanksgiving which meant for the first time in our marriage, Hubby & I would be attending my family Thanksgiving. Thankfully, my in-laws are also going to be joining my family and I can't wait for Thursday! It will be incredibly to have all of those I love so much together in one place at one time!

Ok, so when we realized I would be in town I was quick to offer up my assistance to my mom...who will be hosting our crazy & big family for the Thanksgiving feast. After my fabulous first attempt at yeast rolls, it was decided that I would be in charge of the very important task of dinner rolls. I was actually really excited, I mean my grandma has always made the rolls in the past but with her health it's just easier for someone else to take on the job--of course that also means I have HUGE shoes to fill.

Pioneer Woman's recipe was my savior, with just a minor adjustment of making them single rolls instead of the 3-part, pull apart rolls. My task started last Wednesday night with making the first batch of dough with plans to finish out the rolls on Thursday night & pop them in the freezer! However, let's just say that baking yeast bread doesn't always go as planned and that batch was a BIG FAT FAIL!!! I didn't make the rolls big enough so although the rose perfectly, they simply spread out in the pan. I was incredibly frustrated but vowed to try again Saturday morning.

Ready for the oven...

They look so yummy, even before baking!

I'm proud to say that Saturday morning was a huge success! I ended up with 72, well 69 after a few samplings, gorgeous, golden brown dinner rolls. I decided that since the rolls weren't huge, and with the appetite of my family I would make another batch and worst case, we would have leftovers at our house...which certainly isn't a bad thing when it comes to homemade rolls.

Well, I think I got overly confident & I'm not exacty sure what went wrong, but it was something...and my 2nd batch on Saturday ended up hard as rocks, no rising obviously meant a roll that you could literally use for batting practice! So...3rd batch...BIG FAT FAIL!!!

Well, not to be defeated & wanting to end the weekend on a good note...I decided to try once again on Sunday afternoon. I used the excuse of needing more rolls, but really I was determined to win the battle of the yeast--at least for this weekend! So, try, try, try again...and SUCCESS!! This time I ended up with 64 beautifully golden rolls as I made them slightly bigger than the other successfuly batch.

All ready for some butter...
or maybe some peanut butter, or jelly, or honey...or all of the above!
Some of you may have opted for Rhodes rolls or just rolls in a bag, but that just wouldn't do for my family full of wonderfully talented cooks. I'm proud to say that after 36 cups of flour, 16 cups of milk, 4 cups of oil, 4 cups of sugar, baking powder, baking soda & salt...I have plenty of delicious homemade rolls to go around for family Thanksgiving. Now, hopefully I remember to get them out of the freezer!
In addition to the last batch of rolls, Sunday brought out the Clark Griswold in Hubby & he got all the Christmas lights put up...although I have a strict rule of them not being turned on until after Thanksgiving. Because of that, more pictures will have to wait!
Have a Happy Thanksgiving week! I know I'm so looking forward to this 3-day work week!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Christmas Cards for Free!

Pictures In Red Christmas Card
Shop Shutterfly.com for elegant Christmas photo cards.
View the entire collection of cards.

I just ordered our Christmas cards and I was able to receive 55 cards for free! Shipping & tax were all I was responsible for which came to a grand total of $10.81 for 55 cards! That's a total savings of $131.54. I just love them and can't wait to see them in person! In addition, just for sharing this on my blog I'm able to receive a $25 gift card to be used at a later date...which will be perfect for some Christmas gifts.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Thrifty Tuesday

So again this week I've failed to make my big thrifty purchase in time for Thrifty Tuesday, in fact there may not be a big thrifty purchase this week, but that in and of itself is being thrifty.

This week I decided to discuss how once you become a couponer, it can truly become an obsession. So much so that when things don't go exactly your way it can come close to ruining an entire night...or at least put you in a very bad mood for close to an hour.

Disclaimer: The story told in this blog is ridiculous, I am an overreactor, and I will admit it. So, please excuse the excess amount of drama coming from a situation that was really NOT THAT BIG OF A DEAL!!!!

And now for an example of ridiculous couponing behavior...

Friday night Hubby & I had plans for a nice dinner followed by a college basketball game with my parents. The game wasn't scheduled to start until 8:30 and Dillons had advertised some great deals in last week's ad so I mentioned that I would love to make a quick stop at Dillon's before dinner. Hubby quickly obliged as this was supposed to be a really fast stop with me only purchasing 20 items...many of which were multiples of the same item.

You see, Dillons has these Mega Event sales where if you buy 10 of the participating items you receive a $5 credit or an additional $0.50 off of each item. This is before coupons so you have the potential to get some incredible deals! My scheduled purchase was this....4 cans Swanson Chicken Broth, 4 cans Swanson Beef Broth, 8 sticks Land o'Lakes butter, 2 boxes Quaker Instant Oatmeal packets, 4 tubes of Colgate toothpaste, & 3 Colgate toothbrushes...all for $4.38.

Well...I had everything in my cart and had just gotten to the toothpaste aisle to realize that all the toothbrushes & toothpaste were SOLD OUT!! Now, this wasn't the major problem. It was in the dreaded toothpaste/toothbrush aisle that I realized my notebook with my list was gone, and gone with it were all my coupons for my Dillon's trip along with some high-value coupons for my scheduled Walmart trip for the weekend.

Cue...overreacting & excessive coupon drama! I called Hubby as he was in the car and needed to come help me search. We walked all over that Dillons' store, retracing my steps no less than 5 times...and nothing! I was furious. It literally seemed as if my notebook had disappeared into thing air. There was probably over $20 in coupons in that notebook along with my Dillons Plus card application which contained all my personal information except my SS#. As I was giving up I even asked the customer service desk if a green notebook had been turned in...no luck.

We finally left to go to dinner and Hubby said if we had time we would come back before heading to the game. I was admittedly incredibly grouchy & pouty all through dinner; the only thing helping me out was running into an old friend at Chick-fil-A who also happens to be an incredible couponer. She completely felt my pain and understood my severe frustration!

Hubby convinced me to go back to Dillons and check one more time...he even volunteered to go to the customer service desk for me. Imagine my surprise when he calls and says to start filling my cart back up because he has it! Coupon drama over! I was able to still make a good purchase, not quite as good since the toothbrushes & toothpaste were sold out, but a good trip nonetheless.

However, in the future I promise (to try) to not overreact about any lost coupons, regardless of their value...especially if it runs the risk of affecting a night out with Hubby!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Weekend Rewind

It's been a fairly uneventful weekend around the Layman household & I'm definitely ok with that...especially when I look at our calendar for the next several weeks!

Friday was the basketball season opener of my college alma mater. My parents have season tickets & Hubby had requested they purchase 2 extra for Friday night--we always have a great time at those games & some quality time with my parents as well. Hubby & I had Chick-fil-A for dinner which was even better...a little bit rocky after some coupon drama at Dillon's-maybe I'll share that for Thrifty Tuesday this week!

Saturday I had to work until noon and then spent the rest of the afternoon doing practically nothing. It was so nice to just lounge around and slip in & out of consciousness while napping. A perfect Saturday afternoon if you ask me! We had a nice little date night on Saturday evening with dinner at Romano's Macaroni Grill, a little bit of shopping, & dessert at Orange Leaf. We finished off the evening with a dumb movie, picked out by Hubby of course.

Today was incredibly productive when compared with yesterday. After church & lunch, we both worked doing our own thing--Hubby in the yard & the garage getting things ready for winter and myself in the kitchen and the rest of the house trying to get things picked up. Then it was off to small group and back home to relax and get ready for another week. Hubby is popping some popcorn as we speak, the perfect end to a great weekend--football & popcorn on the couch with my fabulous husband.

See....a pretty low-key weekend for us! I love it! I can't believe that Thanksgiving is only 10 days away...wow, this year has flown by!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

Ok, well maybe I'm not quite ready for snow here in Missouri, but in Breckenridge, Colorado---LET IT SNOW!!! Hubby just made our lodging arrangements, along with ski rentals & lift tickets, for a pre-Christmas ski trip! We're going out with one his coworkers & his wife along with my cousin & his girlfriend. It's going to be wonderful!

In a little more than 30 days, I'll be staying here...

A 3-Bedroom, 3 Bath townhome with ski-in/ski-out access!

We'll be spending our days skiing the slopes of Breckenridge along with a snowmobiling trip one afternoon...and we'll be spending our nights drinking hot chocolate, lounging in our private hot tub & hanging out with some great friends!

Now...if only I can figure out how to keep my hands & feet warm!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Women of Faith Wisdom

I learned so much at the Women of Faith weekend that I'm still trying to process all that I heard. We had some amazing speakers and it was definitely one of those..."are you speaking right to me?" weekends. I decided it would be impossible for me to put everything into words, so maybe a quick-or not so quick-list of the major points will at least let me put something down in writing. My actual notes ended up being on my phone for lack of a better option...

~Strengths are not necessarily what you're good at...a weakness is an activity that weakens you, even if you're good at it.

~Disappointment in my family, my friends, myself hold us back from trust; there are times when I still pray but I just don't ask for anything for fear of being disappointed by God.

~Has God ever messed with your schedule? Remember God is sovreign, there are no accidents.

~Do you dare to trust the heart of God enough to tell the whole truth? I don't have to pretend that everything is ok; God doesn't expect that.

~As Christians I can sing a song that not even angels can sing, the song of the redeemed

~Not forgiving is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.

~There are times when God will take you to a place that seems like a prison, just to set you free.

~Our trust issues are the foundation of most all fear that we experience in this life. In response to that we only give what we can afford to lose, but Jesus came to give us LIFE not just EXISTENCE.

~Putting our dreams to death and trusting that God is good, this might ultimately be the most real act of worship.

~As a sheep with Christ as my shepherd, it's not my job to get myself home. My job is to fall so in love with the shepherd that I can't help but hear his voice.

Wow, just pulling those points out of the notes on my phone bring back so many thoughts from this past weekend. Most importantly, God thinks we're amazing...and who am I to question that?

Monday, November 8, 2010

Thrifty Tuesday~Shutterfly Style!

This week instead of featuring a successful trip to Walgreens or Price Cutter I decided to talk about another of my favorite thrifty sites...Shutterfly!

I started using Shutterfly a few years ago for photo prints and photo books, including the guest book for our wedding! I have never once been dissatisfied with the quality or speed at which I received my order. I've got a large stack of Shutterfly photo books on one of our living room tables and I just love sitting down and looking at all of our past vacations and other family events put together in a beautiful photo book.

One of my favorite things about Shutterfly is that in addition to great quality & speedy service, you almost never have to pay full price for your order. They always have some sort of promotion for various products in addition to free shipping or a percentage off your entire order. This makes great photo gifts even more affordable...and this year, they have a special for bloggers which can result in 50 free Christmas cards...go check it out for yourself @ http://bit.ly/sfly2010

Since Nick & I got married, I have been using Shutterfly for our Christmas cards. I always get compliments on them and I just love the variety of new designs they release each year. I've just started looking at all the options for this year and I'm so excited to pick the photos and design for this year's creation. There are some fabulous colorful & whimsical designs for this year!

In addition to Christmas cards, just this morning I ordered some invitations for my annual Christmas cookie exchange! The group of ladies continues to get bigger & bigger so premade invitations is definitely the way to go...they even have a Cookie Swap specific invite!

I can't wait to get these in the mail!

Now the decision process begins, if only I can narrow down the photos and design to use...of course, whatever I choose I know they'll be fabulous! Check out Shutterfly for your favorite photo cards & invitations!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Imagine: Women of Faith 2010

While it only consumed one day of the weekend, Imagine: Women of Faith 2010 consumed my entire weekend by invading my thoughts and my heart. My mom invited me several months ago to attend a women's conference in Kansas City the first weekend in November--I agreed, as we had never attended anything like this together and I figured it would be a good time with her. As the weekend neared I honestly had some reservations thinking it would be so nice to just stay at home and relax...oh I'm so glad I listened to God and made the trip.

I'll share more later in the week about the truths that I learned over the weekend. I've got a ton of notes on my phone that I have to process before I can put them down into coherent sentences.

Mom picked me up not-so-bright and early on Friday morning (it was definitely still dark outside when we left at 6:00 am). We headed to KC and met up with some other women from her church, most of whom I already knew in some way or another. We attended the conference from about 10 am to 3, checked into our hotel, had a nice dinner as a group, and then went back for some more conference.

The entire group at dinner...it was seriously a fabulous time! I can't wait for next year!

Praising Jesus with Mary Mary and hanging out with thousands of wonderful Christian women is fabulous, but spending it with my mom made it all the better...

Ok, seriously please ignore my ghostly white face...not sure why I decided to reflect the camera flash! But please do note my mom & I's outfits...as she came in the door on Friday morning I couldn't believe what she was wearing---think we might be related by our matchy, matchy outfits? Love it!

Mary Mary was around the entire weekend and wow, they are so fun & energetic but most importantly SO REAL!!!

Saturday was another full day of speakers & worship & fellowship. My sister-in-law, Millie, was even able to join us for a little while during the day. She & my brother are living in KC while he attends law school so it was great to hang out with her for a little while. Unfortunately she had to head back to work so it was a short visit; but good nonetheless.

Me, Millie, & Mom

Saturday afternoon, Natalie Grant, gave a short concert...while she was 8 months pregnant! Man, that girl can sing! She finished off with an acapella version of It is Well With My Soul and it was absolutely breathtaking. I still can't believe how beautiful it was...and all while 8 months pregnant!
Mom & I--matchy, matchy again...but this time on purpose!
The conference wrapped up about 5:00 last night and mom & I headed home. I was totally worn out from the long 2 days, so I was certainly glad for "falling back" last night. I took full advantage of the extra hour of sleep.
Today was a pretty standard Sunday, except I served for the first time in our church's nursery. Hubby & I both signed up to volunteer but I was the only one put on the schedule for the day. It was pretty darn easy for my first experience--don't worry, I'm not naive enough to think it will always be that way!
We've spent the rest of the day lounging around before heading off to small group. Overall, a fabulous weekend and I'm ready for another week!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Thrifty Tuesday...on a Thursday

Well, as hoped I made my weekly visit to Walgreens last night and my haul was just too good not to share. So....you get two Thrifty Tuesday posts this week!

And one quick note on couponing, you might think that you have to stock up for several weeks to have enough coupons to make a difference. That's not the case. Almost everything I bought last night had a coupon that I had clipped at some point in the last week and all but 2 of them came directly from my Sunday paper.

I've also talked with my grandparents who both receive the local Sunday paper and they're going to be saving their coupons for me! This means that I'll have triple or even quadruple the coupons when it comes to some of the really good ones...and believe me, there were some really good ones this week!

Now...on to the loot! 2 large boxes Cheerios cereal, 3 sticks Secret deodorant, 1 stick Gilette deodorant, 1 Oil of Olay Body Wash, 1 Large Oil of Olay Lotion, 1 Small Oil of Olay Lotion, 1 box Domino Powdered Sugar, 1 box Domino Brown Sugar, 1 40 load bottle Downy Fabric Softener, 2 Carefree Women's Personal Hygiene, 1 Febreze Air Freshener, 1 Febreze Home Collections Candle, 1 Maybelline Falsies Mascara, 1 Maybelline Eyeshadow...all for...
!! $21.83!!
With my out of pocket of $21.83, I was able to save $61.43 with coupons and advertised Walgreens savings. See, I told you it was too good of a trip to pass by! And just to clarify, this is all stuff that we use on a regular basis, maybe not the exact brand but we definitely use these products regularly, most of them every single day!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Going to the Big D

This past weekend was a fast-paced and chaotic but tons of fun with family! My mom's dad has always been a Dallas Cowboys fan...always. I think it began when he was stationed in Texas in the Air Force, but I honestly couldn't tell you exactly when he became a fan. All I know is that my grandpa is a diehard and that has been passed down to my brother who is also a diehard Cowboys fan.

Through thick & thin, bad years & good, they both LOVE to watch the Cowboys and it's become quite contagious with the rest of my immediate family. My parents are fans & my sister-in-law realized being a Cowboys fan was a requirement for marrying my brother. Hubby & I...well, we certainly enjoy football, but I wouldn't necessarily call us diehards when it comes to any NFL team. We just love watching a good football game...and in the spirit of football & family time, we became Cowboy fans by default this past weekend.

More so than the game, I was most excited about some good shopping in Dallas at The Galleria. I had been saving some extra cash for several months, so I couldn't wait. I think overall I came away with close to 10 new shirts, a couple new pairs of leggings, and a new pair of jeans...might seem like I spent a ton but Forever 21 became my friend as did the sales rack at Nordstroms...I think I did incredibly well for myself!

My mom found a fabulous hotel right across the street from The Galleria that had been completely redone and remodeled in the past year. It was a Le Meridien property and my parents are members of the Starwood Preferred program so all of us also got upgraded to corner suites...free of charge! The property was wonderful and we couldn't have asked for a better location.

Our living room...complete with my shopping spree on the coffee table!

Our separate master bedroom...fabulous!

Sunday was the main event...Dallas Cowboys vs. Jacksonville Jaguars. The new Cowboys Stadium is seriously a sight to be seen and it quite unbelieveable!

We walked around before the gates open and were even able to watch some of the players arrive in their fancy, ultra-expensive cars...Porsche, Mercedes, Bentley's...yup, we saw it all! They also have a paver program where you can have one engraved. Last year, my parents bought one for my grandpa and we were able to find his. However, my parents also have one that includes all of our names but we didn't have any luck finding out paver...we're gonna have to get better directions next year!

Inside the stadium is just as crazy as outside; it's HUGE!!!! Hubby & I went exploring and ended up near the middle of the stadium...we still had many more stairs to reach the top! We decided to head back down since our seats were all the way at the bottom!
Are you ready for some football??
The entrance of the Cowboys' players was definitely a production!
The whole group...hoping for a Cowboy victory!
Hubby & I from our seats
Unfortunately the game didn't turn out quite like we'd hoped. However, we still had a great weekend. If only we didn't have to drive home 6 1/2 hours in the car after the game! I still feel like I'm catching up from being gone all weekend!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Thrifty Tuesdays

With our busy, busy weekend I haven't yet had the time to play the coupon/ad matching game. However, when the grocery store ad came out last week I knew I would have to make time for a quick trip! So...yesterday over lunch I ran to the closest Price Cutter and cashed in on what I considered a great trip!

4 cans of Green Giant green beans, 2 boxes Kellog's Fiber Plus bars, & 2 packages Ronzoni Smart Taste pasta...all for...

!! $2.26!!

Yup, I consider that a pretty good trip; especially since one box of the Fiber Plus bars is normally at least $3.00. Now, if I could only find a few minutes to do my coupon-matching for Walgreens...it promises to be another great week!

And on an unrelated note...GO VOTE!!! I went this morning before coming to work and there had already been several at my precinct exercising this freedom. I truly believe it's our obligation as citizens of the United States of America to participate in the process of electing our officials and voting on the important issues!