Monday, December 13, 2010

Zero to Hero!!!!! Re-using a sweater!

Sorry for our little posting hiatus. We're "Back in Black" as AC/DC would say. On another note, I'm very excited that I have recently turned tragedy to triumph and want to share. A year ago after I delivered my son, my mom shrunk two of my cashmere sweaters while helping out with our laundry. I couldn't bear to get rid of the sweaters that I loved, and were so soft and cozy, so I held onto them figuring I would find some new use for them. And thus, Mr. A now has two new pairs of fabulous cashmere leg warmers! We realized during a recent hike where Mr. A was in his ERGO baby carrier, that his little legs were getting cold as his pants pulled up when he was seated. Mr. C and I discussed buying some babylegs or some Agoo leggings, and that's when I knew I had a better "free" solution! I cut the arms off the sweaters and instantly they became legs. Two seams later, and they were finished! LOVE it and so does Mr. A!!! Boy does he stay warm and cozy in these when we're out in cold weather! They're AWESOME! I also sewed the arm holes and necks closed on the sweaters and will be putting in zippers at the bottoms to create some posh new throw pillows for our couch.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

How to bring the Super! to the Market

Mr. C, my wonderful husband, has insisted that I post about some of the ways I feed us fabulous, gourmet meals for less.

1. This week, our local grocery stores have great sales on frozen turkeys for Thanksgiving. One of our stores even has an advertised deal of $0.47/lb with a $25 purchase. So I now have 2 small turkeys in my freezer. If you buy turkeys that are around 11-12 lbs, they are really not that much larger than roasting chickens, and yet, the savings is significant. Whole roasting chickens rarely go on sale for less than $0.99/lb in our area, so this is like getting a roaster for half off. And just like chickens, turkey can be made in so many ways. They're really not just for the holidays and can help you stretch your grocery dollars. 

2. Every grocery store has a clearance section for produce, dry goods and some even have them for dairy / frozen items. Check this section first, as there are often good deals that can fit into your meal planning, or can help you purchase top quality, exotic produce at far reduced prices because they haven't sold. I was recently able to buy a package of a half dozen fresh figs that normally sold for $4.69, but I only paid $1.59! I've also been able to get similar deals on shredded cheese, Omega3 designer eggs and frozen veggies.

3. Learn which day your grocery store marks down its meats. Our local grocery stores each do their mark downs on different days. On the mark down days, the stores put $ off coupons on the meat packages that haven't sold, and are approaching their "sell by date". These packages of meat and poultry often have 3 or 4 days before they are to be discarded by the store, but you can often buy these and then either cook them or freeze them within this time frame and capture great savings. Recently, I purchased a package of stew meat which was originally marked $3.49/lb, but after the discount coupon it was only $2.20/lb. You really can't beat it and I've been able to score great deals on gourmet cuts like veal chops, lamb chops and even ground lamb. The stores would rather sell items at deep discounts than to take losses on them, so definitely take advantage.

4. Coupons can be "stacked" at many grocery stores. This means using one store coupon and one manufacturer's coupon to buy the same item. Some stores allow this and some do not, so you need to check, but you can save a lot that way or even score free products.

5. Know which stores have the best prices and which stores have the best coupon policies. Our local Walmart SuperCenter has the best prices for many items, however, they do not double coupons. One of our local supermarkets has higher prices, but they double coupons. Depending on the item and the coupon policy, it is often more cost effective for me to buy at one store than the other, so I split my grocery list up by store to maximize my savings. Coupling this with keeping track of sales at the stores through their fliers and I am really able to stretch our dollars.

These are just 5 of the ways that I have been reducing our grocery budget and trying to keep us eating a great, varied diet. My husband often jokes that he'd rather eat in, since he knows he's going to eat a great meal and he's often been the envy of the lunch table at work.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Rockin' Out with my Laundry!

I'm so excited to finally be able to try Rockin' Green laundry detergent. We started cloth diapering in our house in July when Mr. A was 9 months old and we haven't looked back to disposables since. This has led to a change in our laundry routine though, since the detergents were were using prior were not cloth diaper safe. After a bad experience with one detergent that left Mr. A with a red chemically burned little butt, and a frantic run to Whole Foods to find a detergent that was cloth diaper safe, we've been using ECOS Free and Clear. ECOS has been a good detergent for us. Mr. A's butt has stayed happy and rash free, it has not caused our diapers to repel and it seems to clean all of our laundry pretty well (we've switched to one detergent for everything to aid my sanity level!). Having said that, it is unscented, and I keep hearing awesome things about Rockin' Green so I bought some and it has been lounging in my laundry area just waiting for me to finish the ECOS. The Rockin' Green I bought is the Lavender Mint scent and it smells so fresh. They have tons of other yummy scents and are even coming out with a special holiday edition. I am even more excited to try it out this week since Rockin' Green is having a GREEN FRIDAY deal on Black Friday. From midnight to 8AM they will be selling detergent on their website for $10/bag (normally $13.95) of Classic and $12/bag (normally $15.95) of Hard Rock (limit of 2 bags per customer). I'm hoping that this detergent Rocks as much as everyone says since this would be a great deal to stock up.

Check it out here:

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Everybody was Kung Fu Fighting.....!!!!!!

I just saw these and I am in LOVE!!!! How cute? How Different?!

Find them here:
Who needs regular gingerbread men, when you can have Kicka$$ Gingerbread Men? Seriously!

Monday, November 8, 2010

New website at Decades Two!!!!

I just stopped in on my favorite designer consignment website and they've totally redone, and out-done themselves. I love the clothing at I love their photos, descriptions and everything about them. I've bought a few items from them previously on eBay and the items were fabulous and at a fraction of their original prices. Chanel, Prada, Louis Vuitton, Dolce and Gabbana, bags, shoes, dresses, accessories, Decades Two has it all... and so much more...and its all beautiful! If you're on a budget, with "champagne tastes on a beer budget" they are definitely worth taking a look at for your next fashion fix.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

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Membership Sites for Discount Deals

Another of my favorite ways to buy fabulous designer or specialty goods at discount prices is through membership sites for deals and daily deal sites. My favorite membership sites for things for the whole family are,,, For children's items, I have found, and (formerly Btrendie) to be the best. Additonally, there are sites on-line that provide daily deals for a limited time - the time periods range from minutes to a 24 hour period. Some of my favorites are,,, and You can get great things at great prices at any of these sites. One caveat is that you need to calculate the shipping fees into your bottom line to know if you're really getting a great deal. It's so easy to be an impulse shopper and the clothing and toys are so adorable, so beware!