Jackpot! (Or we score a leather jacket)

Today, my husband dragged me to an outlet mall. Yes, HE dragged ME to the outlet mall. An outlet mall that was an hour from our house. I believe he has lost his mind, or at least he did temporarily in the pursuit of a leather jacket.

As I said yesterday, he didn’t want just any old leather jacket. He wanted a blazer style jacket. He was pretty sure that the Wilson’s Leather Outlet would be the place. I didn’t realize how much Wilson’s had pulled back. There used to be a Wilson’s in almost every mall. Now the only one in the state is the one at an outlet mall an hour away.

When we got to the mall, we both commented on how quiet it was for Black Friday weekend. The mall I went to yesterday was also very calm. I’ll be interested to see the retail figures for this weekend. From my observations, people weren’t buying a lot. I also spoke with a number of sales associates on Friday to inquire about the sales. They all stated it wasn’t as busy as they thought it would be. When I was at Kohl’s on Friday, there was an announcement over the intercom that the early morning specials were being extended until 2:30pm. In the years I worked in retail, I had never seen that happen.

As we walk around the outlet mall, Jeff is excited about shopping. This is very odd since my husband HATES shopping. In the last 24 hours, we had been to at least seven stores looking for the perfect leather jacket, going in and out of stores and malls. Now, an outlet mall. We walked into Wilson’s and after 30 seconds found the perfect coat. It was exactly what he wanted and only $135. It fit well, looked good and the price didn’t make me choke. He waited in line as I walked around the store looking for other deals. I found a wonderfully soft scarf on sale for $16.

We concluded the purchase and walked the jacket out to the car. I wanted to do a bit more walking around and Jeff nodded. Apparently, the rabid shopper from ten minutes earlier was gone. He was done. We quickly went into a few more stores. I noticed that a lot of the prices weren’t that great. One of the stores was more expensive than Target for the same merchandise. Other outlets had sales that were not as good as the sales going on all weekend at the regular mall.
I did get a few good deals. We did well at the Hanes and Old Navy Outlets. I took the opportunity to stock up on things we needed.

Clearly, at this point, Jeff was done. Well, except for stopping at the pet store for more fish. I think we have finally replaced all the fish we lost in the storm. The tank is now buzzing with activity and the cats and the husband are happy.

Live is good.

Looking for local deals? Check your radio!

Well, maybe not your radio, but your local radio stations’ websites.

While listening to the radio yesterday, I heard the DJ talking about half price deals on their website. I decided to go check it out. I was quite impressed. The station offered a number of half off gift certificate deals for local restaurants, stores and entertainment venues. I decided to check out a few other stations in the area and many of them also offered their own deals. One station in Western Massachusetts even has an upcoming deal for a CDL training school.

I  would encourage you to check out your local radio stations to see if they offer half price deals. The stations I went to were WCCC (Hartford), WHYN-AM (Springfield, MA), and WRKO (Boston – under traffic and more).

If you find any good deals in your area, let us know!

Awesome computer deals for the holidays at TigerDirect.com

Computers are one thing I do not skimp on. Between my accounting business, teaching, and all the web work we do, we need good computers. We have ordered our last three computers from Tiger Direct. I’ve been thrilled with all of them. They have some great deals for the holidays so if you are in the market for a new computer, you should really check them out. This sale ends 11/20/09 and most of the deals come with free shipping.

72HR LAPTOP LIQUIDATION.- (11/18 – 11/20/09) or while supplies last!

SAVE $80 – FREE SHIPPING – Samsung Netbook Intel Atom 1.6GHz 1GB DDR2 160GB HDD 10.1″ WSVGA WinXP Home 6-Cell $299.99

SAVE $20 – FREE SHIPPING – Toshiba Mini Netbook Intel Atom 1.66GHz 1GB DDR2 160GB HDD 10.1″ WSVGA WinXP Home $329.99

SAVE $20 – FREE SHIPPING – Gateway Notebook Intel Core2Solo ULV SU3500 1.4GHz 2GB 250GB HDD 11.6″ Vista Premium $399.99

SAVE $70 – FREE SHIPPING – Acer Extensa Notebook Intel Celeron 2.2GHz 3GB 250GB HDD 15.4″ WXGA Vista Home Premium $429.99

SAVE $20 – FREE SHIPPING – Acer Aspire Laptop Intel Pentium DC 2.1GHz 4GB 250GB HDD 15.6″ Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit $499.99

SAVE $20 – FREE SHIPPING – MSI Notebook Intel Core2Duo T6600 2.2Ghz 4GB 320GB 16″ Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium $599.99

SAVE $20 – FREE SHIPPING – MSI Notebook 2.2Ghz 4GB 320GB 16″ Windows 7 Home Premium $599.99

SAVE $2100 – FREE SHIPPING – HP Compaq 8730w Notebook Intel Core2Duo T9400 2.53GHz 2GB 160GB HDD 17″ WUXGA XP Pro/Vista Business $899.99

Lord of the Rings Online

Veteran’s day deals

Julia over at Bargain Babe has posted some free stuff for Veteran’s Day. I might just have to take my Veteran out for a special meal tomorrow.

Home Depot and Lowe’s offer a 10% discount on all Military holidays. Just bring your military i.d. or your DD214. We take advantage of this one a few times a year.

You can also Google “Veteran’s Day discounts” and the name of your state to find local offers.

To all our active duty soldiers, our veterans and their families, thank you for fighting to preserve our freedom. If you see a soldier or veteran take the time to thank them tomorrow. If you know a local family who has a soldier in their family, take a moment to thank them as well. Often we forget the families and how much they give up so their loved one can serve. God Bless you all.

When a sale is not a deal

Every week, I go through all the grocery sales to see which store I’m going to shop at this week. One store had a 5/$20 meat sale. As I started looking through the “sales” I noticed that this was a pretty crappy deal. One pound of boneless chicken or one pound of ground beef. At 5/$20, we are talking $4 per pound. I don’t know about you but I don’t spend more than $2.25 for chicken or ground beef, so the idea of paying $4 a pound makes my head hurt. This may be a sale but it’s not a deal.

Another example of this is Connecticut’s “Sales tax holiday week.” This sounds great right? Well, a bit of background… The sales tax holiday only applies to clothes. Connecticut currently has no sales tax on any piece of clothing $75 or less. The holiday increases this exemption to $300 per piece of clothing during the holiday week. What I want to know is who is buying $300 pieces of clothing? Remember, this is not per purchase, this is per PIECE of clothing. I don’t even pay more than $50 for a coat. My last jacket was a $225 Lane Bryant leather jacket which after sales, discounts and coupons, I paid about $47 for. Connecticut advertises this sales tax holiday like crazy as if we are all getting an awesome deal. Most people aren’t going to save a dime from this program. NO DEAL!

When shopping make sure things are actually a good deal. This is where one of those little price notebooks comes in handy. Write down the lowest normal price you find commonly used items for. That way when you find things on sale, you can refer to your little notebook to see if it’s actually a good deal.

This week the grocery store sales suck so I’ll being going down to the PriceRite to pick up some staples. I’m starting to run low on a few things.

Do you come across things like this in your travels? What crappy sales have you seen lately?

I don’t get it

no-saleLast night, I went to Big Y (a local grocery store chain with stores in Connecticut and Massachusetts) because they were having the Buy 1, Get 2 free sale. I love the B1G2 sale. I picked up 3 dozen eggs for 2.19. I got 4 lbs of ground turkey for $5. I got 3 lbs of pasta for 1.69. Everything I bought was onsale. Even the milk. In all, I got over $140 worth of groceries for less than $65. Saving more than 50% on my food bill makes me a very happy camper for the week.

So I’m standing in the dairy section, by the eggs and this woman walks right past the store brand large brown eggs that are B1G2 to buy the store brand white eggs that are not on sale. She even looked at the sale sign then looked at the eggs I was purchasing and kept on with her white eggs. It’s times like these that I want to take my fellow shopper and shake her. She really didn’t seem to be budget conscious at all, because after getting the eggs she bought refrigerated cookie dough, also not on sale. Many times I will say something to someone if they are buying a product and there is something identical on sale right next to it. I’ve even been known to give out coupons in the isles but I get a lot of strange looks from people since this is Connecticut and all. I think it’s Connecticut state law that you aren’t allowed to be friendly to people in a retail environment. So I just went on my merry way, annoyed with people who completely ignore sales. When I got to the cashier, the front end manager was explaining to a woman how the buy 1, get 2 free sale works. “If you purchase three of an item, you’ll get two of them free, but if you only purchase one of the item, it’s full price,” she explained. Is it that hard to understand? Really?

The cashiers are always amazed when I walk out of a sale like this. I’m not really sure why since most things I bought were at least buy 1 get 1 free and I had a bunch of coupons. I guess that’s why they call them loss leaders. Most people are lead into the store by them and then buy a ton of other stuff. I just buy the loss leaders and call it a day. Jeff was laughing at me as I mumbled something under my breath about paying full price for eggs.

Am I the only person that reacts like this? I can’t be the only crazy one at the grocery store. Someone tell me I’m not the only one. Please?

Print FREE Grocery Coupons at Home

Meal plan and groceries: Great week at the store


Thor is inspecting the groceries to make sure everything is safe for human consumption. Good kitty!

I got caught up on some things over the weekend but didn’t have time for grocery shopping. Finally got that done today. I did really well at the store today. Some of my best deals:

  • Split chicken breast, regularly 2.99/lb was .99/lb. Savings:  $7.08
  • Eggs were only .99/dozen
  • 2 boxes of frozen pierogis, regularly 3.19 a box, with sale and coupons I paid $1 per box.
  • 4 boxes of coffee filters, regularly 2.29/box, with sale and coupons I paid .65/box.
  • BBQ sauce was only .49 a bottle after sales and coupons.
  • Chicken grill seasoning was 2.29 per bottle. It was B1G1, plus I had a 1.00 coupon and a .75 coupon. They tripled the .75 coupon, so I got 3.25 off which means they paid me .96 to take it home for them.
  • Carolina rice was 1.oo per bag. I bought four bags. I had two .75 coupons which they tripled. They paid me to take that home, too. I made .50 on that deal.

I love when the store pays me to take things off their hands. There were only two things I bought this week that weren’t on sale, the mushrooms and the peppers. Those are for salads and pizza. Everything else was on sale or I had a coupon, even the store brand stuff which worked out well since I had no idea the lasagna noodles and the stuff I needed for enchiladas would be on sale. Total before coupons and sales: 96.49. Cash paid: 45.43. Total saved: 51.06 or 53%. My coupons savings alone were $15.50 which is a good week for me.

This week’s menu:

Monday: Chicken enchiladas, yellow rice and corn

Tuesday: Crockpot swedish meatballs

Wednesday: Lasagna and salad

Thursday: BBQ chicken and stuffing

Friday: Deep dish pizza

Saturday: Hamburgers

Sunday: Pancakes and sausage

Organizing coupons and sale shopping

Well, I finally went grocery shopping. One of my local stores was having a good sale this week so I was inspired to go. I got all my coupons cut out and put them into my coupon holder. I have a small plastic file with about 10 dividers. I like it because it fits into my purse so I always have it with me. It came with little stickers so I could make up the categories myself. Some couponers like to set up their file so it matches the isles of their grocery store, but since I shop at a few different stores, that doesn’t really work for me. My file is broken up into categories that make sense to me. Some of my categories include: Meat, deli and produce; snacks; dairy; frozen; health and beauty; cleaning and cats; paper, plastic and bread; Italian, Mexican, rice and potatoes.  The reason paper, plastic and bread are together in mine is because the bread always seems to be in the same area as the paper and plastic items. It just made sense to me. You have to come up with a system that works for you. It might take you a couple tries before you are happy with the setup of your file. It has to work for you or else you won’t use it. Make sure you get a  file you can carry with you everywhere, since you never know when you’ll see a great deal at Target or Wal-Mart and just happen to have a coupon to match.

On to grocery shopping. I didn’t have a list with me this week since I was stocking up. I was there for the deals and some produce. The store was having a buy 2, get 3 free (B2G3) sale. Here are some of the deals I got:

  • store brand butter B2G3. Full price 3.49 each (butter is expensive in New England), sale price $1.40. Savings $10.49 or 60%
  • Dannon yogurt 20 for $10. I also had a coupon for $1 off 10 so I only bought 10. This is where knowing your store policy is important. At this store, you don’t have to buy the full amount to get the discount. I purchased 10 containers for $4 after the coupon. Total savings: $4.50 or 53%
  • Sargento shredded cheese was B1G1 and I had a coupon so two 8oz packages of shredded cheese was $3. Regular price $8. Savings: 63%
  • Keebler fudge shop cookies were on sale B2G3. Saved 60%. Paid $1.60 per package.
  • Same deal with pasta. B2G3 saved 60%. Paid .68 per package
  • Bread was B1G1. My husband eats toast for breakfast each morning so two loaves will go fast in my house.
  • I bought myself a loaf of potato bread. It was on sale for $2.50 but there was a coupon on the package for another 55 cents off. Look for those coupons on the packaging. Especially if the item is on sale. I’m on Spring Break this week so I’ve been eating at home. Sandwiches for me!
  • My best deal with week was on egg noodles. My husband thought I was nuts as I was walking back to the cart with 6 bags of egg noodles. They were originally $2.19 per bag. This week they were B1G1m which is a great sale where I am. Normally the best deal on egg noodles is $1.49/bag. I also had 2 coupons for $1 off 3  bags. Final price per bag 91 cents. Savings of 65%.
  • Boneless, skinless chicken was B1G1. I like their chicken because it’s trimmed well. I know I can get chicken less expensively, but it was still a good deal at about $2 a pound.
  • The grocery store I used also had a coin program. You get  coins for shopping which give you discounts on things. We were hungry going into the store so we each got 2 pieces of pizza and two cokes. We used the coins to get 1 piece of pizza free and one discounted so lunch cost us $8. I also used coins when shopping to get a discount on pickles, and lettuce. When I bought the pizza, I got one coin back and when I was at check-out, I got another one. I also got a coupon for $5 off my purchase next week. We’ll see how the sale is.

I bought a lot of  stuff this week. My cart was full. Total before sales $158.61. Total after sales and coupons $88.74. Savings $69.87 or 44%. My savings would have been a little better had a shopped alone. I wanted ice cream and the sales weren’t that great. My husband wanted a few things that were not on sale, but he generally buys store brands so it’s not so bad. Plus, I have a blast shopping with him. It’s much better than shopping alone.

The key to saving is matching up the sales with your coupons. You can either do it before going to the store with the sales flyer or at the store as you see items you need on sale. Depending on how much time I have, I’ll do it either way. During tax season, when I don’t have a lot of time, I match up everything at the store. I have a very good memory so I have a pretty good idea if I have a coupon for something.

Did you get any great deals this week?