Friday, October 21, 2011

Saving For Christmas

One of the hardest thing for me is saving money during Christmas time. Every year I say I'm going to start shopping early and every year I'm still shopping on Christmas Eve. Unfortunately this means that I grab the first thing I see and I'm not too concerned about the price. But this year I really want to follow through on shopping early and saving as much as possible.

This morning bright and early I made it to Target. Target has Transformers Dark Side of the Moon toys on sale for $6.99. I paired that with a five dollar off coupon available here and I got two toys for my nephews for $1.99 each (remember you can print 2 coupons per computer). I will add these to my stash of cheap (costing) gifts I'm getting for the kids.

I also ordered some collage prints to use as part of the gift for sister through Walgreens. If you use coupon code CLG8X10 to check out and pick the picture up at your local store the 8X10 collage print is FREE.

I'm proud of myself for actually starting shopping early this year. Now I just need to finish shopping early.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Selling on eBay

Lately it seems like I have moved away from buying and selling toys and even children's clothes and have been purchasing a lot of designer jeans. I will admit I know NOTHING about designer jeans. I just can't see myself paying over $100 for a pair of jeans. But I have seen my niece do this several times and have made note of some of the brands.

I'm having partial success with this. So far I have sold a pair of Citizens of Humanity jeans for $27.00, two Diesel jeans for $19.00 and $22.99, a pair of Not Your Daughters Jeans for $29.00 and a pair of Bebe jeans NWT for $24.99. These were all sold auction. I only paid between $1.00 to $3.00 for each pair of jeans so it's a great profit. But they aren't selling as well as I was hoping. I have 4 auctions up right now and only one pair has a bid. If they don't sell I might change them to BIN and hope they sell better.

Listing a pair of jeans takes me at least twice as long to list then a toy or other items. I have to measure the inseam, waist, front rise, back rise, hips, and leg openings. In the listing I always make sure I include any details on the tag (and on some jeans that is a lot). This keeps me from receiving countless emails from potential buyers asking for more details. I also make sure I take pictures of the front and back of the jeans and a picture of the tag. Because these jeans are so expensive there are a lot of knockoffs that look authentic and usually you can tell by the tag.

Even with the extra time and the so so sales I think I will continue to sell designer jeans if I find them at a good price. These are the brands I look for:

Seven for all Mankind
True Religion
Hudson Jeans
Citizens of Humanity
Not Your Daughters Jeans (NYDJ)

I would love to hear of any designer jeans that sell go for you.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Rite Aid Shopping Trip

This Sunday morning I woke up early (shocking!!) and made it to Rite Aid to take advantage of all of the great deals available in their ad this week. (See For the Mommasfor a full list of the Rite Aid deals and coupon matchups.)

I had 5 separate transactions and paid $9.96 out of pocket. I have one single check rebate to send in for $5.99 and a $1.00 Up Reward left over for my next visit so my total for all 11 items will be $2.97 which comes out to $0.27 per item. That made the early morning worth it.

I purchased:

Transaction 1:
1 Comtrex Severe Cold and Sinus for $3.99
1 Prep H Wipes 10 count $3.00

Paid $6.99 out of pocket and received $6.00 Up reward towards next purchase

Transaction 2:
1 Chloraseptic Lozenges  $3.99
1 Cepacol Lozenges $2.50
1 Burts Bee Throat Drops $1.49

Total $7.98
Minus $6.00 Up rewards

Paid $1.98 out of pocket and received $6.99 Up rewards

Transaction 3:
1 Hylands Cold and Cough $5.99
1 Rite Aid Hand Sanitizer $1.00

Total: $6.99
Minus $6.99 Up rewards

Paid zero out of pocket and received $6.00 Up rewards

Transaction 4:
1 Blistex Lip Ointment $1.49
1 NeilMed Nasa Mist $5.00

Total: $6.49
Minus $6.00 Up rewards

Paid $0.49 out of pocket and received $6.49 Up rewards

Transaction 5:
1 Zarbees Child Cough Syrup $5.99
1 Rite Aid Hand 1.00

Total $6.99
Minus $6.49 Up rewards

Paid $0.50 out of pocket and received $1.00 Up reward for next visit.

The Zarbees Child Cough Syrup is a Single Check Rebate so I’m sending that today and should have a check for $5.99 from Rite Aid in the next month or so.

I'm stocked up for the upcoming cold season! I usually go shopping during the week but I find a lot of items have sold out already. There was a lot of selection on Sunday morning and no one waiting in line (which was good since I had a lot of transactions). I think this Sunday morning shopping is going to become an ongoing thing.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Free Sample

I only found one good sample today but it's one of my faves:

Free Huggies Sample from Sam's Club. No membership necessary.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Weekly Goals and Update

I guess it's time to see how I did on my goals this week. I'm not looking forward to this.

Motherly Goals:

1) Work more on colors. Find better strategies.  We have been working a lot on this but we still have more work to do

2) Go to the pumpkin patch this weekend   We made it to Swank Farms in Hollister this weekend. The kids and I had a blast. I was glad there was plenty to do for both the little kids and the older ones.

3) Spend quality time with my Princess  I did spend quality time with my Princess but I won't cross this off since it's a never ending goal.

Saving Goals:

1) Put more money in my emergency fund  I added $30 more dollars to the fund. That brings me to $325.00. Only $675.00 more to go!

2) List 40 Items on eBay total (minimum) I didn't do this (again). I had 35 listed and then I sold 8 (HOORAY!!!) and 2 ended without bids (boo) so I have 25 currently.

Personal Goals:

1) Organize garage (this sounds familiar) Don't ask. Just notice that it isn't crossed off (again)

2) Try to contact April I was finally able to talk to her and I think we both feel better for it. I miss my BFF

3) Wake up 30 minutes early to have some alone time Let me start out by saying that I'm not a morning person. I did manage to wake up 3 times 20 minutes early. That's a great start for me.

This weeks goals are:

Motherly Goals:

1. Work on fine motor skills with Princess.

2. Take Princess to her appointment. We have a speech assessment next week so hopefully that goes well.

3. Spend quality time with my Princess

4. Find more indoor activities to do with Princess since it's raining here and we aren't able to go out and play.

Saving Goals-

1. Add more money to my emergency fund

2. Have 40 items listed on eBay

3. Go coupon shopping at Target. I always forget my coupons when I'm near there.

Personal Goals-

1. Organize garage

2. Wake up 30 minutes early at least 3 times this week to have some quiet alone time (more manageable I think)

3. Make time to reconnect with old friend in Sac

Hopefully you did better on your goals this past week then I did.

Daily Samples

I found a few good samples available today:

Free Cream of Wheat sample. My baby will love this one.

Free sample of Aguafresh tooth paste available thru Walmart.

Yesterday I was very excited to see a free sample in my mailbox. I finally got my sample of Downy Unstopables. Can't wait to try it!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Free Samples

I haven't found or ordered any samples in a couple weeks. Nothing has caught my eye. But I did find a few this morning:

Free Sample of Lacoste perfume

Free Sample of Zantac . These I keep in my purse. You never know when heartburn will hit.

Hopefully I will start getting little surprise samples in my mailbox again.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

My Princess

My Princess is the love of my life. I will admit she is slightly spoiled. But I've waited and wanted her for so many years that I go a little overboard sometimes.

You see I can't have children. My ex and I figured that out after trying for many years. I was very sad and discouraged. But after a lot of tears and praying I finally realized that even if I couldn't have a child that didn't mean I would remain childless forever. There were lots of children who need some one like me.

I started the adoption process in OC. But after my ex and I separated I moved back to Salinas. It took me a while to settle in to my new life. Once I was settled my family encouraged me to continue trying to adopt even if I was single. I was apprehensive at first. But after a lot of discussions and praying I decided to try again.

The process from orientation to getting a child took a year. Mostly because in the middle of the process I had to put it on hold to find a home for us.

On January 21 I received a call that there was 20 month old little girl. I was given the details about her family and the reason she was removed. I agreed to meet her the next day and fell in love on the spot.

This has been a difficult process and it's far from over. When you try to adopt a child through the county you are a concurrent foster home at first. Even though the social services is trying to reunify the child with their parent(s) if they determine that there is a chance the child will not be returned to the parents they want the child in a home where they can move straight to adoption if and when parental rights are terminated. Sometimes a child is returned to their parents after being in a concurrent home for an extended period of time. I know couples this has happened to and its heartbreaking. Unfortunately its a chance you take.

We go to court next month for my Princess and the social worker is recommending termination of parental rights. Part of me feels bad because I'm "taking" (or hoping to take) a child away from her parents. But I remind myself that my Princess was removed for a reason and that had nothing to do with me. I want the best for her. And if her parents aren't able to turn their lives around to give her a good home I'm blessed God put her In my life to provide a good life for her.