Saturday, November 29, 2008

Happy Holidays!

For some crazy reason, I'm very amped for the holidays this year! Maybe because last year was so much rougher and I was still recovering the sleep deprivation of having an infant, or maybe because I am so excited to experience Christmas through H's eyes this year. We put up our Christmas tree today and once it was dark, I brought Henry down, showed him the tree all lit up and decorated. His response? "WOW!"

Friday, November 21, 2008

Can't Wait!!!

For Jen Lancaster's next book, Pretty in Plaid: A Life, a Witch, and a Wardrobe, or, the Wonder Years Before the Condescending,Egomanical, Self-Centered Smart Ass Phase!!! I check her blog daily and find her wildly funny. Too bad it doesn't come out until May...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Something special...and delicious

Calling all brownie lovers! A few years back at our annual Junior League of Chicago's Gazebo the people from Blissful Brownies had a booth. OMG. Blissful is definitely the proper name for these brownies. And not only are the brownies Blissful, the service is as well. I adore them for allowing me to send one delicious, *fresh* brownie to my beloved Granny, who lives alone in a retirement community. I don't get to see her often and I love to send her things, but she certainly doesn't even need a half dozen brownies. Also, a couple years back when a friend of mine was going through a rough patch, Blissful rushed a half dozen brownies to her to help dull the pain.

Anywho. Enough of me waxing poetic over these brownies and on to the sharing of the ever important coupon code!!!

Offer expires Saturday, November 22, 2008.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Cheap & proud

So, our food bills (grocery & dining out) have been so high in the last few months that it's embarrassing. Like I'm not going to admit the number embarrassing. Maybe they have always been this high, but with the new house budget, I'm now tracking it closely and it cannot stay this way.

I've always enjoyed clipping coupons. Something about the ritual of going through the Sunday paper ads and snipping good deals makes me happy. I'm not always as good about using said coupons, but hey, gotta start somewhere right?

Anywho. My latest obsession is scouring the grocery store ads and planning our meals to utilize what is on sale. And stocking up when things are on sale. You can imagine my pride when I received my grocery store receipt today to see:

Total spent: $55.94
Total savings: $21.02

Yippeee!!! (yes, I know, I'm a complete nerd)

Next up, I need to try The Grocery Game. It's supposed to cross reference store coupons with manufacturers coupons so you can save the most. I received an immense amount of satifaction today when I purchased Land O' Lakes butter buy one get free for $3.19 AND had a coupon for $.50 off. I scored in the raisin department this way as well.

We do also shop at Costco, but I'm beginning to have concerns about just how cheap it really is to buy in bulk. I think I'm often wooed by products that aren't all that great of a deal. Ok, sorry, what was meant to be a quick post about saving $20 turned into quite the rambling on cutting grocery costs!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I can't say the move in process is complete. We finally had to dig out the mud room a couple weeks back. That had been my dumping ground for "stuff". If it didn't have a home yet, I dumped it in there. That had to end sometime. It felt really, really good to clear it out.

Lately I've been looking around and realizing we have entirely too much stuff. It's hard because I feel like the stuff is part of who I am. As far back as freshman year in college I can remember people coming to me if they needed something. I've always enjoyed being the person with the perfect "thing", or solution whether it be clothes, shoes, tools, medical supplies, whatever. But it's not like I haven't known I have too much stuff, but lately, and maybe it's the economy, it's started to actually feel like too much. And really, I could get rid of a LOT and still have all the perfect things. I really want to start weeding things out, but it is so overwhelming to think of where to begin! Just a few things I need to organize and sell:

  • Old KJB Designs stock. For anyone who doesn't know, I used to have a small side business making jewelry. I made a fat ton of stuff for my booth at the JL holiday fair years back and I swear I still have some pieces from that. I should really sell this stuff, even if it's at bargain basement prices. It's just taking up room.
  • KJB Designs supplies. The massive number of semi-precious beads I have sitting around again, is staggering.
  • Vintage clothing. I have a good number of vintage pieces that I have purchased over the years that either never fit, or I just didn't find a way into my wardrobe properly (black puff sleeve sweater dress, I'm talking to you!)
  • Electronics. I know we have many, many pieces of slightly older electronics that should be shown the door, ebay style, because even if we only made a small amount, the sum would really add up.
  • Wrought iron decorative pieces. I had a major passion for this stuff for a few years. I've put a few pieces of it up here, but the rest feels tired. A craigslist lot could do nicely for this.
  • Clothes. I did take a small step last week and tried out a new consignment shop in the neighborhood. However, in the strangest consignment move in history, the woman did not want my COH jeans!? I have a couple pairs of the Faye style that I've just never worn much (the wide legs just aren't my thing) so I thought it was time to let them go. I mean, I know skinny jeans are more the thing these days, but seriously, I still think she could sell them in a heartbeat. Again, ebay, or maybe fashionswap needs to get these suckers.
  • Purses. I truly need to take inventory and made some tough choices. I'm gonna guess my purse count is over 50 and who knows, might be much higher than that.

While I'm rolling on the organizing topic, I'll add another list (mostly for my own purposes) of places that really need a solid hit in the cleaning/purging/organizing department:

  • Garage. I need to take a few choice piles of stuff from our massive garage shelves. I know of at least one kitchen box that has never been opened post move. I may discover its all crap, but still, it should get opened. There are also massive numbers of CDs and books out there, some of which (books that is, not CDs), should be loaded into the guest room shelves.
  • My closet. I'm not happy with it's layout and again, there is way too much stuff in it to begin with. I'm certain their are pieces that even if I were skinny enough to not loaf into them I wouldn't want anyhow.
  • Upstairs linen closet. I'm so happy to actually have a nice sized linen closet, so why, oh why is it poorly stuffed?
  • Filing cabinet. I approached this project with gusto earlier in the summer. Then I slowed to a halt because it was boring and never got back on track. The "to be filed bin" is now massive.

Whew! I do feel a bit better even after just listing all of this. Yet somehow each evening the allure of GossipGirlANTMGreysAnatomyBrothers&Sisters, etc pulls my fat ass to the couch. Perhaps if I organized & unloaded the stuff I could also successfully get rid of the extras pounds I'm hauling around in my jeans these days!?