Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Spending $ to get $...

Today, a hole was burning in my pocket. Ok, not a real hole and not really in my pocket. It was in my wallet. You see, I had three coupons for DSW.

1. Double points.
If you sign up for their "club" or card, you receive points for every dollar you spend. In return for giving them your name and show spending habits, you will then receive a coupon for $ 10 in the month of your birthday. By the way, my coupon always sucks, as I usually want sandals f
or my Florida trip, and good luck with finding those in Cleveland in January. You also will receive coupons throughout the year - for every dollar you spend, you get so much back as in incentive to buy more. (like crack dealers... the first is free, etc.)

2. Said $10 coupon.
Off anything. period. Hard to go in there & not find something - at least go get some freebie socks or shoe polish. Of course, I think I've only done this once - it usually ends up going towards a pair of shoes.

3. $20 off $50 coupon.
Off anything, but you have to spend $50. It could be more than 1 item and it could also be used with another coupon. (score).

So I spent over an hour searching at the last DSW in the area for a deal. (the coupons all expire tomorrow). Yes, it is not that hard to spend that amount of time in a shoe store for me. Really. Especially with the quest of saving $.

I searched for boots for the end of season sale. Nope. Not even in the guys' section. (Women luck out as they can wear mens shoes - just in 2 sizes smaller). Strike 1.

I also searched in my husband's section for sales. Strike 2 - unless he really wanted a pair of duck shoes. (really, why make them in a mens size 12?)

I also searched along the womens rows & rows of shoes. You know the ones - where women walk s-l-o-w-l-y up and down the 3' walls of pure bliss. Back and forth. Up and down. You know what I me
an. Not much luck there, either.

So off to the sale racks I went... and of course, womens size 10 is all the waaaaay to the back, on the right. Whenever I go there, if there is anyone else over there, we kinda size each other up. Especially when I see a really skinny girl (ha haa - you have skis for feet, Ms. Perfect!). And no, MY feet are not big - they're perfectly sized & proportionate to my body. So there!

As I looked through all of the 4" come ef me pumps in size 10 (who wears these? Drag Queens with small feet?), I came across one of my most favorite shoes for the past year. Yes! Seriously, that NEVER happens to me. In my size, in the correct color and on sale! (and they fit!).

Side note: I KNOW I don't "need" a pair of green flats. And I KNOW I really don't have anything to wear with them... yet.

Now, these bad boys are normally $50 and on sale 30% off. I'll do the simple math: they're now $35. And with my $10 off, they're $25.

The dilemma was that I now had to find something for at least $15. So up & down I went. I even called my husband to let him know what they had in his size. (Yes, I CAN buy shoes for him, rare, but true). Nope - he didn't want anything. So now I'm trying on shoes I "could" use. Like sandals for an interview or a wedding. The only thing I really liked is a pair of Merrels - and I already have 2 like them. Dangit.

Ok, I know I could figure this out. So I checked out the socks. Blah. Then off to the wallets, etc. Nope. Not like I needed either, too. Ok, I KNOW I can find something else to buy to save $ - so I found a pair of flip-flops that were $15.95. I need a pair of cheap flip-flops like I need a hole in my head, but who cares?

At the register, I whipped out my 3 coupons. Double points. Check. $10 off anything. Check. And $20 off $50. Check.

Basically, I would have bought the $68 shoes for $25. And since I bought the hole-in-the-head-flip-flops, I got them for BOTH for $20. I just wish math was a simple as this when I was in school. Score!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Stuff you can buy me...

If you're reading this, you probably know me. And if you know me, then you also know that I am hard to buy for. I simply can't help it - I really don't do this on purpose. Since my birthday has passed and it is 9 more months until Christmas, here's a helping hand for then. In no particular order of awesomeness.
*Note: I wear a size 10 or 41 UK shoe
* Another note: there is no reason to
have to wait for Christmas or January, either. I love surpresents.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Number Schnumber...

12 days later & I'm not exactly looking forward to hanging out on my newest investment tonight (the sleep number bed).

I keep trying to tell myself - you'll get used to it - you'll be just fine. But it is getting worse. Here's why:

While I think I actually found "my number" (60), the rest of the bed has issues.
I really don't like that the bed is two air chamber thingies inside a layer of foam. It resembles having 2 Coleman air mattresses inside your mattress - with a hard foam lining around the sides. This is so each side can have its own number. The company advertises it is for couples with different mattress preferences. I found that I like a 60 & can actually sleep on my back - but only in that area. If I dare roll over towards the middle - I hit the foam wall, aka the steel beam. It is similar to what a king bed feels like in the middle - like 2 twin beds pushed together. Where they meet isn't where anyone would like to be - let alone sleep.

So if I want to sleep - I have to stay on that side of the bed. No sideways of the legs, etc. either. That damn hump causes sharp pains in my hip that pounds so bad it awakens me. Then I try to actually roll over the hump - onto the other side (set also at 60). This is ok, too - but I have to stay in that area for a no-pain sleep.

As my husband said - I might has well bought a twin bed. The dual chambered bed is NOT for a single person in the bed OR for anyone sleeping with someone touching. So this just sucks, as I have about 30% of my bed to use. Not cool for the hefty price. I could have bought the best at The Original Mattress Factory AND have enough left over to buy a flat screen tv for the room.

And speaking of tv... I like to watch it while in bed. And because of my room's layout - the tv is at the foot of the bed across the room. So if I want to watch it, I need to either sit up (doesn't last long for me) or lie kind of sideways with my head on one side & my feet at the other. So this can't happen now - because of the foam wall which is the exact placement of my hips. Which shoots pains up & down my legs. So to watch tv, I have to lie in bed like a corpse in a coffin & look through my toes. This lasts about 10 seconds & sucks.

So now I want to return the bed because it isn't for me at all. But everything I see on their 30 day free trial is exactly that... a 30 day trial. And today is day 12, not 30. I might as well pack it up & go get a new mattress set tomorrow & send it on day 30. But the guys who delivered it & set it up (and TOOK my beloved, but bad for me old mattress) also TOOK the boxes the new bed came in. Shit Shit Shit. Guess I'll have to go find some boxes to send them back in - which I will have to pay for - my guess is about $100. (which stinks as there is an effing STORE nearby). I will also not be refunded the $ spent on the original delivery & setup & removal.

An expensive lesson I guess... but with the crappy sleep I'm getting, it is something I'm willing to pay to fix. Blah.

Monday, March 21, 2011

My "number" part 2

5 days ago I let go my safety net - my beloved mattress of 11 years. My Linus' blanket. While it was time to say our good bye's - it was still hard watching 2 dudes throw it on the street on its end while a light rain sprinkled on it. And the left it there - in the rain, in the street - while they assembled my new bed of choice - the Sleep Number bed.

It seems really weird to me that something that looked really well to the eye was bad for my back. I know - 11 years is a good run for a mattress. And the reasonable part of me let it go to the street easily. But there is something about taking care of an expensive purchase the way I did. It had zero stains - unlike the mattresses you see on the side of the road with stains so big they look like a homicide happened on them. I always think " geez, that was in your house last night before you put in the trash - gross". But my clean and well kept mattress was just set on its side in the rain - like those gross ones left for the garbage man. The guys told me my mattress was in really nice shape & would be donated to charity. (um, get it out of the rain, then?).

The thought of a used mattress from me made me feel proud. Because I KNOW I'm clean, etc. The thought of someone else's mattress is gross, though. I guess a used mattress is better than none to those in need (so get it out of the rain!)

I've been in denial about my mattress for about 2 years now. That is about the time my job was eliminated and also when I found out I have arthritis in my back. Nice timing. Not exactly rushing out to spend $1,000 on something frivolous like a dumb mattress. But as time went by, my mindset changed about the job (we're doing just fine & don't have to hoard every penny) and my back worsened. Or should I say, my back felt like poo from that beloved mattress. Even the el=cheapo mattress at my parents' Florida condo had better results after tossing & turning all night. (It might actually be the salt water, too - it has a nice affect on me for feeling better).

I made the mistake of watching the show "Dirty Jobs" a while ago. Mike Rowe went out on really gross job: mattress removal. They picked up old mattresses & took them to a recycling center. (thought that part was cool). But they had to wear the white, chemical warfare suits all zipped from head to toe. And the mattresses they picked up are as gross as you can imagine. Stains, bed bugs - you name it. The thought makes me squirm. But the worst part was when they said that for every year a mattress is - there is a pound of dead skin/dust mites in it. AHHHHH! Ok - so you do the math. Again - gross.

So with this in mind and a worsening bad back - I purchased the Sleep Number bed. It allows me to change the firmness with air chambers. 5 nights ago was about the worst night ever for me sleeping. I know, I know - what? Yup - apparently I guessed the wrong number(s) for the softness/firmness. They say to try a number & stick with it for at least 3 days. No way - so I changed them the next night - worse. Ugh - now I'm really pissed and actually thinking I made a huge mistake. By night 3, we changed the numbers again - and finally I woke without a backache. The last couple of nights have been much better, too. I admit, my back hurts - but don't think the mattress is a cure to backaches - just won't ADD to them.

So now, my number is 60 on a scale of 0 - 100, soft to firm. Hopefully, my back will feel better & that I've found my "number".

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

My "number?

Tonight will be fun... because change is hard for me - and I have a new Sleep Number mattress.

You know – the kind of mattress you see in the mall with the remote controls. The beds that pump air into a chamber that goes up & down according to how hard or soft you like. The ones where you never see anyone in the stores, except maybe bored husbands trying to do something while their wives shop. Or where teenagers goof off laying in beds together.

Actually, I found that this is the store where they spend time with you listening to what you want in a mattress. And you can really test out these babies - because they give you your own personal cover for the pillow. I admit, I don't like trying mattresses out in front of people. I mean first, I don't lay in bed with a stranger staring at me. And I also don't normally sleep with jeans, etc. on - let alone shoes or with my purse. And the thought of putting my head down on their test pillow is about the same as using an airplane pillow.

So with my personal pillow cover and an hour later, I discovered it might be better to spend more $ on something already expensive. One of my worst fears is buying something like a new mattress and hating it 2 days later... and there goes $1k blown. Not exactly like taking back a pair of shoes to Kohls.

One of the appealing features of a Select Comfort mattress is that I can actually change my mind on how soft or firm the bed should be – by the mere press of a remote. And not only can I change my mind - but I can change it whenever I feel like it!

So the delivery & setup was today. They took my 11 year old beloved Original Mattress Factory mattress & box springs. So there's no turning back – off to play with the remote to find my "number".

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Stuff that bugs me, part 2 (or as my Dad says: "There's nothig worse than...")

Again - some random thoughts of stuff that bugs me:

People who smoke on their veranda on a cruise. You suck. Now there are smoke-free cruises - but am guessing it isn't enforced on verandas.

Neighbors that come home late at night blasting their car radio. Then they don't get out of their gangsta groovin' car quickly - oh noooo - they sit in their pimp cars & listen to the crap music longer.

The day before a weigh-in. It is like Ash Wednesday all year long.

It bugs me when I buy fruit & veggies and I have to prepare them always. And if not - they'll rot. And even if I do prepare them, they'll also rot unless I put them in individual containers for lunch. I hate throwing away food.

It ticks me off when I find egg remnants on the dish scrubbee thingy... especially if I didn't even eat eggs.

I can't stand it when someone chews, smacks, pops or cracks gum. A close second is someone who breaths really hard or makes strange noises - likes clears their throat 150 times a minute. I usually get this person sitting right next to me in class or behind me in church.

Speaking of church - people who say the rosary during mass annoy the crap out of me. You know who they are - they kneel - right behind me and "whisper" the words out loud - in my ear.

Not too much into people who cough or sneeze into their hands, then try to shake my hand, etc. Not cool.

I hate grocery store "self checkouts". Every time I use one I vow again to never use them again. And then I use them 5 months later because I have 4 things - that of which will cause an error & make me wait more time for an employee to help. These suck about as bad as the looks you get from the people in line behind you.

I can't stand going to the grocery store, Target or BJ's without my coupons. I'm not exactly a coupon queen - but I've been known to save loads of $ with them. And it kills me to pay full price for items that I know I have a coupon for sitting on the kitchen counter for.

I hate my birthday month. 3 weeks after Christmas means having to make up things I want for my birthday. Also - most people are dieting or "watching" what they're eating - what is the fun of a birthday without cake or booze?

The fact that stone crabs are really only cooked well in Florida bugs me... which means they're a once-a-year treat. dammit.

I hate that I can't eat a small piece of angel food cake - that if unattended, I could kill the whole thing... especially my Mom's cake w/ her icing.

I can't stand it when people are late. If you are late, then call. And if not - at least have the decency to apologize when you do get your late ass there.

Drinking from my coffee cup & it has gone cold. Now, I love a cold coffee drink - just not my hot coffee that got cold.

I can't stand hot pie or cake. Blame my parents on this one - warm or room temperature fruit is pretty crappy too - not to mention beer or wine. And the mere thought of warm milk almost gags me. I have to block it out of my head that "hot chocolate" is hot MILK.

I can't stand it when people think rules don't apply to them. Huge pet peeve - just jerks, plain & simple.

Tofu is about as nasty as they come. Hate it when a rogue piece from someone else's stir fry gets in mine at Mongolian BBQ. Scallops there, too are pretty bad - especially when you think you're eating a piece of chicken - and SURPRISE! you get a weird texture with a fishy taste.

It really bugs me that people assume I do nothing all day as a freelancer. While that may be true on sometimes, don't assume I just sit watching tv while eating bonbons. Did you see my shoveled driveway? Or my kick butt yard? If you did, you wouldn't think I was inside watching soap operas & Judge Judy all day. (OK, I do actually like Judge Judy).

And on the flip-side is that on the days I'm really busy with freelance work - it is assumed I'm available to watch your kid, make dinner, mow the lawn or have a 2 hour lunch. Some days I work harder and longer than if I was at an office.

And speaking of laundry - it would be nice if I did you laundry that the clothes be right side out. Socks rolled up like a donut suck. You know who you are - Mr. Donut Sock! (but I'll still do your laundry any way. :)

Gee - I guess a lot of stuff bugs me - and these are just as I'm typing. I guess one of the biggest things that bugs me is: that things bug me. Must work on that, while I go get the laundry & unroll the donuts in the dryer.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Things that bug me...

If you read this - then chances are you know me. And chances are you know that many things bug me. Some days I'm reminded on the MANY things that bug me. Here are a few that I either encountered or remembered today:

It totally bugs me when people don't return phone calls. It is simply lazy or rude - and yes, it makes me feel as bad as you intend.

I bugs me that said people not returning phone calls are clearly busy with themselves - really important things like Facebook. I just guessed that if they had the time to post crap online all day, then they'd have the time to return a few phone calls, too? Guess not.

I can't stand bad dog owners. You know who they are - the ones who can't control their dogs on a leash (and when the dog acts bad they act all dumb as if it is the first time - when it is a daily thing). I also can't stand the same people who don't walk their dogs - but just tie up the dog in the yard. (no wonder the dog is bad on a leash). These are the same buttholes who let their dogs poop and pee in my yard. Don't even get me going on that one.

It bugs me that we have a squirrel that has discovered the free food-fest in front of our home - aka the bird feeders. These are really not for the birds - but for the pure entertainment of the cats to watch in the window... not to watch Jabba the Hut Squirrel making a pig of himself on my expensive sunflower seeds.

It really bugs me that neighbors don't see the same things that the rest of the world can see. Like a broken gate that has been hanging off the hinges for a year. Or the snowblower that is in the driveway for months. Or the flat tire(s) on your expired plates car in your driveway. Seriously - if you are that lazy/dumb/ignorant/fill in the blank bad description here - then move to the country on 10 acres of land and call it the junk yard that it really is.

OK - vented enough for today - sure there will be more to come... :)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Newest Keens

A friend who just started her blog today made me realize I haven't posted in quite a while... so what more to talk about than one of my recent shoe finds...

The latest & greatest on the hunt for shoes was the find at a Dillards 40% sale last week. Normally, the shoes in these sales are for anyone with a size smaller than 8 - so I take these sales lightly. The stores look like a bomb hit them (otherwise known as the female shoe huntress). There are shoes all over the shoe department - left for the lowly shoe salespersons to pick up at the end of the day. I sincerely feel bad for the employees (although when I said this, one sales clerk told me it was job security - so maybe it isn't as bad as I think).

There are also typically shoe racks all over the shoe department - in sections of either brands or sizes. This sale didn't even have my size for a rack. Typical my sucky luck. These racks are so close together that when you DO find one to test out - you're fighting for space - either from other shoppers (who usually sprall out & take up the whole "aisle" or simply because they're so effing close together).

I scored at the Keen & Bjorn section - knowing many people haven't realized the fact that Keens are quite possible the best shoes ever. And I lucked out by find these in my size - so I ended up paying $22 for these bad boys. Yes, I know - they're black & teal - but who cares? They're a way better fit than my Chuck Taylors - and to be honest - I'm getting too old to wear crappy shoes that don't feel good. (but I still have my Chuck Taylors just in case there is a need to be cool when I may not need to walk) I know you know what I mean by "sitting shoes". Just sayin'.

Another bonus is the new Keens come with 2 pair of shoelaces - in black AND in teal. I know - how can I even decide? I kept the black laces in - so they're more of a "winter" shoe. Because these have canvas on 1 side & leather on another - I'm not sure if these are winter, fall or spring shoes. Oh well - they fit awesome & feel even better on. They're definitely not "sitting shoes" & one of my newest favorites!