Saturday, March 31, 2012

Mega-Let Down


Like millions of other people, I bought in to the lottery fever. Tim and I headed to a nearby gas station and plopped down $5 of our hard earned money to buy a chance at the dream- at the time, the jackpot was only $540 million dollars.

$540 million dollars.  It's little wonder that all I could talk about pretty much the entire day Friday was what I'd do with that much money.  I've already told you what I'd do with a much lower amount of $30 million.  Suffice it to say the sky is the limit with an estimated payout of around $230 million!

At 11:00pm, we waited on the Mega Millions numbers to be drawn.  I knew instantly we weren't even close.  Not. Even. Close.  Even though I knew we wouldn't win- don't get me wrong, I like to dream, but I sure wasn't rushing out to buy my silver spoon just yet- it was still a bit of a disappointment. 

Three lucky people out there did win however.  Their lives have been changed forever with just a few lucky numbers.  Incredible.  I wish I wasn't so jealous I'm turning green just thinking about it.

Oh well, it looks like I won't be quitting my job and buying that horse farm after all.  

It's not all bad news though- I didn't win the jackpot, but I did correctly pick the Mega Ball on one of my tickets.  So I won $2.

See- there is always a silver lining somewhere.  You just have to look.


Thursday, March 29, 2012

Why the No Gas thing won't work.

Have you seen this? It's all over my Facebook wall.  Don't buy gas on April 15th and we'll send a message? No, that won't work and let me tell you why.

How many people who plan to not buy gas will just fill up on April 14th or April 16? All of them.  You aren't taking any money out of the pockets of oil companies when you give them your money a day early or a day late. 

In a boycott, you have to do without something.  Can we all do without gas for a month? No, we can not.  We have to work, no matter how high prices climb.  We have to go to the store.  If we could go without, then perhaps an attempt at a "gas out" would be effective.  Instead, the monthly gas sales will stay the same.  Even the amount of sales within the week will stay the same.  A one day boycott doesn't help anything, sadly.

It's actually funny, every year or two an email forward or something similar to this goes around.   That "gas out" in 1997? Yeah, gas never dropped by 30 cents.  Sorry!

Instead of trying to not spend on April 15th, think of long term ways you can cut your gas usage.  For instance- try to do all your shopping in one trip to town, instead of going to a different store every day of the week.  For us, it's a 25 minute drive to the city I prefer to shop in.  If I can do it all on one day instead of having to go back 3-4 days in a week, we stand to stretch our gas out significantly.

Also, please feel free to check out "".  I've included the direct link to the page about gas boycotting.  They have compiled all the various forms of this same sentiment that have been around since 1999.


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Racism and the movies

 The Hunger Games is out and it is huge.

I read the books- they are fantastic.  I have seen the movie- it is fantastic.

However, wouldn't you know that people have taken something that should have been wonderful and fun and twisted it in to something ugly.

There are two characters in the movie, Rue and Thresh, who are Tributes from District 11.   In the movie, they are portrayed by black actors.

Let me start off by saying both people do a stellar job with their parts.  Thresh especially fit exactly what I was expecting out of him, even though he and Rue are not in the movie very much. 

Spoiler Alert

Apparently some of our narrow-minded nation has flocked to Twitter and other social media to complain that the two characters are *gasp* black.  Never mind that the author writes about them having "dark skin".  I guess she didn't spell it out enough for these people.  One wrote that "Ugh, they made Rue black.  Now her death has no meaning." that again.  Because this little girl is black, her death is meaningless.
That's probably not what this teenage idiot meant.  More than likely, she meant that she was so distracted by the difference in the Rue on the screen and the Rue in her head that it robbed the little girl's death scene of it's emotion because she couldn't just get over it.  That is not, however, what she said.

Other tweets of note:

"Ewwww rue is black?? I'm not watching,"
"Why did the producer make all the good characters black?"
"Why does rue have to be black not gonna lie kinda ruined the movie."

Wow.  Not to mention the "N" word was bandied about.  After all, Lord forbid you find out that the character you bawled over was really just some little black girl.  

These two people should be celebrating a phenomenal opening weekend after having landed the great roles in a movie that is breaking records left and right.  Instead, they are dealing with racism surrounding the color of the skin of fictional characters.  My heart goes out especially to this adorable little girl, Amandla Stenberg, who is 13 years old.

It's an ugly world, Amandla, full of ignorant people who speak before they think- who do a lot of things before they think.  Unfortunately, they tend to breed and create more small minded idiots just like themselves.  The best thing to do is just keep smiling.  At the end of the day, you two are huge successes. They are just sad, racist, narrow-minded, pathetic sacks of worthless.  Maybe if they are lucky, some day they will crawl out of the gutter and join the rest of society. 

I wouldn't count on it though.


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

What Couponing Can Do-

A friend of mine just recently had a house fire.  They lost pretty much everything- including some beloved family pets.

Thanks to the stockpile and my couponing, I was able to put together a box of toiletries, beyond what I could have afforded to send otherwise.  Soap, razors, shaving cream, lotion, perfumes, makeup- I don't fully recall everything that went in to the box.

My point in this post is not to pat myself on the back that I helped someone that needed it.  That's just what you do. 

My point is that through couponing and buying items when I could combine sales for the best deals allowed me to give more than my budget would have otherwise allowed. In some cases, the items I gave away I had managed to get for free or made money by purchasing them.

I am able to give items away to friends and family who need them without a thought- because I do have 10 tubes of toothpaste in the closet, or 8 shaving creams under the sink.   Friends have asked me to teach them couponing and stockpiling so they can help family members who are unemployed or donate to their local homeless shelters.

Don't make the mistake of thinking stockpiling is the same as hoarding.  Many of us are not just sitting on thousands of rolls of toilet paper, giggling to ourselves and waiting on the next sale so we can go do it again.   Donation isn't an excuse or a justification for buying 20 tubes of toothpaste.  For a lot of people, it really is a way to save our households money while helping others.


Sunday, March 25, 2012

Is March Almost Over?

Today is the first day in the month of March that I honestly feel like I have caught up on my sleep!  That almost didn't happen as a ridiculously terrible thunderstorm rocked the house around 7:30am. 

I am not much of a napper- while I agree taking a well placed nap might have helped me not feel so exhausted for...well... pretty much this entire month, often they end up making me feel worse and make it hard for me to sleep at night.  Counterproductive.

At least March is almost over.  Don't get me wrong, every single weekend has been packed with fun and the one coming up is no exception, it will be nice to spend April relaxing a little more.


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Coupon Brag

A while back, I spent $4.19 to purchase everything you see here.  I got some awesome deals, as this total was $42.77 before my coupons.  The best part was I was able to submit it for a P&G promotion where you got a bakeware set when you spent X amount on P&G products.

Guess what arrived in the mail today?!

My Bakeware set! Look at all the fun things! Mixing bowls, a silicone baking sheet, a spatula, a regular baking sheet, measuring cups and a pot holder.  I love deals like this- not only was what I purchased before a great deal, this baking set is going to be a lot of fun and was totally free.  It's been a good day!


Tuesday, March 20, 2012


It appears that I finally have developed Spring allergies.  Oh joy of joys.

Even though it is March, Spring is in full bloom and has been for weeks.  With temperatures ranging as high as the mid-80s this "winter",  the bugs are out and about- being obnoxious, as per their purpose in life.  I even had to dodge a lazy bumble bee yesterday, who came out to investigate our beautiful buttercups.

For several years I've dealt with the vague feeling that spring allergies were going to start appearing in my life- the occasional itchy eyes on a particularly high pollen day, a sneeze or two more than normal... but it's sad to see them finally here.

Oh well, it's a small price to pay for the beautiful, depression free, 60-80 degree-days winter that we just experienced.  I do have a feeling that bugs and allergies are going to be particularly bad this year.  I hope Summer comes in like a lamb and we get more mild, beautiful days than we do scorching hot ones!


Thursday, March 15, 2012

$1000 Challenge Update

02/24- $1 Survey Payment

02/25- $3 Survey Payment

02/27- $15.88 rebate check from Ebates

02/28- $20 from Survey Company

03/03- $48.06 Cash back from a credit card rewards program.

03/05- $5 Survey Payment

03/07- $20 Survey Payment

03/09- $3 Survey Payment
           $5 Colgate Rebate
           $30 Kaspersky Rebate

03/10- $2 Survey Payment


Wow! The challenge is going extremely well! I am having a hard time remembering not to add in credits that I earn.  Luckily since I write out where the money comes from, I can remove any amazon credits that sneak their way in!


Wednesday, March 14, 2012


It's been a while since I blogged! With Jersey Wooly Nationals coming up (and now gone), it's been a madhouse trying to get everything ready!

Tim is in Haiti on a mission trip right now.  I have pretty much no contact with him and won't until he gets home on Monday.  So I'm living the single life right now. Lunch and Dinner have been pitiful affairs, since I don't like to cook for only myself.  I am trying to be good and avoid going out to eat (which would consist of dropping by a fast food restaurant, since it's too depressing to eat alone in a nicer place), which means there is a lot of soup and canned food being eaten at my house this week!

I think Gypsy the cat misses Tim.  She jumped in to my lap last night and just laid there to be petted.  Normally she will lay beside me on the couch, not on top of me!

Our baby chickens (oh, did I mention... I got baby chickens?) are growing up so fast. I took a trio outside to enjoy the weather a little bit.  They were fascinated and terrified all at once.

I also discovered we have at last a pair of mice living in the garage.  Not cool.  Time to grab some traps and hopefully we can nip this problem in the bud quick, fast and in a hurry!

Since Tim is gone, I did get to watch Dance Moms when it aired live- along with two DVR'd Hoarders.  I then just left the TV on the Storage Wars marathon while I read and played on the computer.  There are perks to not having to share the remote!


Monday, March 5, 2012

CVS Deals

So- there is a good deal at CVS this week.

If you got the paper this weekend, check your P&G insert for the Buy an Olay Facewash, get an Olay Body Wash free coupon.

Go to CVS, look for the Olay Age-Defying Face wash which is on sale for $3.99. Get it, then check out Olay body wash- you can pick any up to like, $7.99, but some are spitting out $2 ECBs when you buy them. I got one that is moisturizing and is 23.6 oz- which is a HUGE bottle.  Buy one that is giving the ECBs, then don't forget to check the magic coupon machine- I got a $3/$10 health care coupon from CVS. You can scan your card 3 times, or until it says no more coupons are available.

Keep an eye out for a Free Package of "Convenience Size" oreos coupon from the magic coupon machine too.  The packages are $2.19, but if you scan them, they ring up 2/$3. The max value of the free coupon is $1.50- so they will ring up totally free!

They also have Gold Emblem Jelly Bean packages for $0.99 that are giving a $0.99 ECB back- making them free.

So I spent $1.59 on both Oil of Olay products and the jelly beans and got $2.99 back in ECBs! That's a money maker!

Don't forget to hold on to your receipt as part of the $15 Rebate when you spend $50 on P&G products offer!


Sunday, March 4, 2012

Whirlwind Weekend

What a weekend we have had- you won't believe it!

On Thursday, as I am about to head to work after yet another night of not sleeping well, we realize that while we let two dogs out to use the bathroom, only one came back.  River ran away.   Tim and I split up and searched the neighborhood calling out her name.

At 9:40am, an hour after the dog went missing, just as we slide under a fence to begin walking the neighbor's acreage, Tim gets a phone call.  His Granny Irene passed away.

At 10:00am we called off the search.  Tim went to his office and I called in to my job to let them know if she wasn't home by 11:30 am I'd be switching off with Tim- he'd come home and wait to see if she wandered back home while I went to work.

I spent the next hour and fifteen minutes sitting on the front porch with Bear & Dixie, hoping they'd bark, play and generally attract River back home.

At 11:15 I called her name half-heartedly one last time- and imagine my surprise when she almost instantly appeared, soaking wet, muddy and smelling like stagnant pond water.  I was able to head off to work, while poor Tim had the joy of coming home and giving her a much-needed bath.

We talked with Tim's parents and were told the funeral for his Granny would be at noon on Saturday- in Georgia. We sent the dogs to stay with my dad and Friday morning found us Georgia bound.  What a drive!

Tim preached his Granny's funeral on Saturday and then we hit the road.  Saturday was my Dad's birthday and we had been planning a party for him while we all watched the Carolina vs. Duke game.  We left at 12:45pm and made it to his house by 6:45pm- only 15 minutes to spare!

From there we watched the Tar Heels whip the Blue Devils (the smile is still plastered to my face), then it was home for a much needed rest.

I thankfully got to sleep in today! I wish I could avoid work tomorrow- but instead, I've got 2 1/2 hours to make up from the stupid dog running away.  Sigh.  

It's looking like this week/next weekend is going to be just as busy!  Oh well, I guess I can rest when I'm 80!