Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Stock Images Free Annual Membership

Snapfish Stock Images is offering annual membership (a $12 value) to the first 1,000 subscribers.
This would be great for people who love taking pictures like I do.

Making Disney Memories with Snapfish

Snapfish wants you to make Disney memories on  5 day/4 night Disney vacation to either Walt Disney World in Florida or Disneyland Resort in California.  

If you win the sweepstakes, you'll also receive a $200 Snapfish gift certificate to turn your Disney experiences into shareable keepsakes. Enter here for your chance to win by February 28, 2011!  

Also you can claim your FREE 12"x12" photo calendar and enter the Snapfish vacation sweepstakes, simply register with Snapfish.  This offer is valid for new and current Snapfish members.

Snapfish and Hershey's Has Teamed Up

Buy any two participating Hershey's candy products, receive your unique coupon code by entering your UPC codes and get your free desk calendar or mug (details on page) after paying $4.99 shipping and handling.  This promotion only lasts until January 31, 2011.

Bluetooth Hands Free Car Kit

For the longest time, I have been wanting to try a Bluetooth hands free car kit but had not found one that was easy to use and one that was affordable.  Many states have since passed laws stating that a hands free device must be used when using mobile cellular phones on the roads so people are less distracted while driving.

On November 4, 2010, 1 Sale A Day offered the LG HFB-500 Bluetooth Hands Free Car Kits for $20 each with a $20 mail in rebate.  For all three items, I paid $14.97 shipping.  This was the break I have been looking for.  I purchased three for $20 a piece and have submitted rebates for all three with UPC codes.  This rebate allows you to submit up to 10 per address.  The rebates need to be submitted within 60 days from date of purchase, so hurry and get them in.

Since receiving it, I have used it and continue to enjoy using it.  I like the fact that it is solar and that you charge it on your windshield for convenience and that setup and usage is easy.

2011 Savings Tracker

Anyone who knows me, knows that I am all about stretching our dollar and getting the best deal for our money on stuff that we use or enjoy.  Getting the best deal does not necessarily mean scrimping pennies.  However it does mean being smarter about our purchases - using coupons, online coupon codes, online rebate and cash back sites in conjunction with sale and free shipping deals.

I have been using Excel to track my savings all these years and will try The Coupon Projects 2011 Savings Tracker.

I just saw this link posted on Money Saving Mom about a 2011 Savings Tracker being offered by The Coupon Project.  Check it out and see if it will help you track your savings in the new year.

Thanks Coupon Project for this free download for personal use only.

JcPenney.com Additional 20% off

JcPenney.com is offering an additional 20% off online off of their sale items using coupon code: EXTRA.
Offer valid until January 1, 2011.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Spreading Holiday Cheer with Freecyclers

Today we purchased 3 $25 Restaurant.com gift certificates and offered them up on our Pasadena Maryland Freecycle group so that we can spread holiday cheer to fellow Freecycler's in our group.

There has been a lot of interest in them as you might expect this holiday season.  The three people selected have all been contacted and all three gift certificates have been emailed directly to them so that they can go ahead and redeem them at Restaurant.com.  Our wish is that all three people who were selected go out to eat and enjoy themselves and have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy 2011!

We appreciate everyone who continues to choose to be a part of our Pasadena Maryland Freecycle group.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas at Our House

We celebrated Christmas a day early because my husband has duty tomorrow.  We had our kids open their Christmas presents throughout the day today and they really looked forward to it.  Our kids got some things they have been asking for for quite some time.

This morning we all slept in.  We stayed home to rest, relax and spend quality time together. At times we did our own things after the kids had gotten to open a gift and were playing with them.

I was supposed to make our Christmas dinner tonight but ended up making hamburgers with fries instead so we will have our Christmas dinner on Sunday.  This is the Christmas dinner that we used our $25 gift voucher from the Coronado commissary.  We will have ham, mashed potatoes, stuffing, bread and veggies.

On Christmas day, my husband's ship is having Christmas dinner so he will be taken care of.  We are supposed to go over to a friend's house but the issues I am having with my eyes is not making me want to go.

We would like to thank our family and friends who remembered us this holiday season.  The cards are great and so are the wonderful gifts.  We will enjoy and appreciate everything!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Kids Eat Free at Ikea December 26, 2010 - January 9, 2011

Ikea just sent out an email saying that kids eat free at Ikea December 26, 2010 - January 9, 2011.
Ikea has these kids eat free events through the year.

Here's the fine print:
*OFFER VALID (12/26/10) – (1/9/11). Choose one combo meal: meatballs w/mashed potatoes and a beverage, PBJ Sandwich w/cookies and a beverage or pasta marinara w/steamed vegetables and a beverage. $2.49 value. Children under 12 only. Child must be present. Limit one combo meal per child. No purchase necessary. Participation varies. See IKEA store for details. Not valid at IKEA Houston or IKEA Direct.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Restaurant.com Deal

Restaurant.com has a promotion going on now until December 25, 2010 where you can get a $25 gift certificate for only $2 using coupon code: HOLIDAY, plus if you go through a cash back site like MrRebates or Shop At Home you can get them for even cheaper.

MrRebates now offering a 35% rebate.
ShopAtHome now offering a 35% cash back (40% for a limited time)

If you still have people on your holiday list, this deal would be great plus they can be emailed directly to the gift recipient.

Update: I was able to take advantage of this deal using Shop At Home's cash back program that enabled me to receive 40% cash back on top of the already reduced price.  This will give our family the opportunity to try a restaurant we have not yet tried in our area.

After purchasing our Restaurant.com gift certificate online, we redeemed it for a gift certificate to Sushi Hut and ate dinner there last night.  Much to our surprise, all the menu items there are made to order.  The chicken and steak were really tender and juicy, the shrimp tempura was delicious, the salads with ginger dressing were good and the Rainbow Roll and Unagi nigiri were great!  We all agreed that the food was delicious and it will be someplace we may go to frequently.  Great deal in our book and the prices are really reasonable.

Mamapedia Deals

Mamapedia offers excellent deals on stuff you can use.  It is similar to the other excellent couponing sites.

Select your city and you have the option of getting these great deals delivered to your email inbox.  Check out today's deal.

You can also select the school you want to support and 5% of each sale goes to support your favorite school.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Payless Shoesource Extra 20% Off

Payless Shoesource emailed an extra 20% code valid until December 24, 2010 when you use coupon code 40864.

Starbuck's free $5 Gift Card with purchase

If you go to Starbuck's today or Wednesday and purchase a 12pk of Via, they will give you a $5 gift card free.  Quantities are limited and valid at participating Starbuck's locations only.

Spreading the Holiday Cheer

We decided to spread some holiday cheer to our immediate neighbors, so we lined two tins and filled them with some of our baked goodies and gave them some scrumptious goodies and wished them a happy holidays and also to introduce ourselves.  My husband met them earlier, so this was my opportunity to say hi.

Kongregate by Game Stop

Visit Kongregate now and play up to 30,000 free games online.  Kongregate is the newest edition to Game Stop.  If your kids are on break and they are looking for something to do when it is raining outside, this might be someplace to check out.

Free personalized photo greeting card to send or print

Nestle Family is offering a free personalized photo holiday card to send or print using American Greetings.  You can add up to 3 of your photos.  This would be great way to remember someone this holiday season.

8x10 Photos for $1.00 Today Only

Snapfish is running a promo for $1.00 8x10 photos TODAY ONLY.

The prices go back to $2.99 each tomorrow, so take advantage of this while you still can.

Update: I was able to take advantage of this today.  I cannot wait to see how the pictures turned out!

Christmas Season

This Christmas is our first Christmas in California.  So far it has been a full month for us - moving from the east coast, trying to get Christmas shopping done, meeting my husband's people, meeting new people, kids settling into their new schools, getting my van fixed and trying to find our way around has been the most challenging.

This is also the first year we made homemade goodies for my husband's people.  We spent the majority of this past weekend making Terri's Lemon Cheesecake Cookies and Gooey Sugar Cookies, Adrian's Nutella cookies, Snickerdoodles and pans of brownies with mini morsels in it.  We know they are all delicious because we tried them all a few times.  It sounds like his people really enjoyed them which is great news!

We have also been trying to do Christmas shopping for our family and friends.  It has been quite challenging this year because of our move.  Our shopping list is smaller this year and our Christmas card list is larger.  My husband and I have decided that we will use our Christmas monies to purchase us a new computer because ours has been acting up a lot lately and is infected with some type of virus for the ump hundreth time since we got it about 10 years ago now.  We sent out a few more Christmas cards today.  The rest of our Christmas gifts went out in the mail yesterday since I was not able to get out and shop like I was hoping.

Yesterday we made some homemade peanut brittle and put together a few more treat bags for our friend's kids teachers and their good friend that hasn't been feeling well.  Yesterday, we made collages from magazines as cards for the treat bags and put the baked goodies and a candy cane in them.  I hope they enjoy their goody bags.  Also when our friend dropped his kids off yesterday, I gave him a bag of our baked goodies and he loved them.  The peanut brittle is delicious!

We hope this holiday season brings with it quality time with family and friends.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Our New Home

Moving across the country has been a busy and stressful time for all of us. We packed out in mid November and arrived in sunny California the last week in November.  The drive from east to west coast was very long.  Along the way, we were able to meet up with a few people we had not seen in awhile.  The first day we drove to Virginia to see my husband's family.  We had not seen them all year so it was a wonderful visit.  

Our next stop was Arkansas where we stayed a night in the hotel using a military discount and it even came with a continental breakfast.  Then for the next two days we made our way down to Texas where we met up with friends we had not seen in 4 years.  We stayed the night and the next day.  They took us around to see The Alamo, The River Walk and The Natural Bridge Caverns.  We had a blast and we had a lot of fun catching up.  Our kids enjoyed catching up and playing together.  We were sad to leave but we knew we needed to make our way over this way.  

Upon our arrival, we were very fortunate to be able to stay with a friend's family for a few days until we were able to get into our new place.  We sincerely appreciate our friend's having us stay with them during our transition.

The day we moved in to our new place, was stressful because our household goods arrived the same day.  From the time our first shipment of household goods arrived until the second shipment of household goods, we have been going through all of our belongings weeding out whatever we do not have room for or whatever we no longer need.  We moved from our house with a full attic to a house with no attic or basement so that part has been challenging.  The challenge in this case is good because it forces us to look at what we own and see if we really need it or if we can do without it.

Our 2nd shipment of our pack out had been screwed up from the start.  Von Paris Movers in Maryland refused to inventory our household goods after it got dark after complaining about their employers for an hour when it was still light out.  Then they practically were throwing our stuff into their truck because they were pissed off about working all day and coming from another job to finish our job up.  Then they "lost" our shipment and all of a sudden because we were complaining we did not have our stuff they said corporate was working on our shipment.  United Van Lines approved us purchasing air beds to sleep on until our 2nd shipment arrived.  So we went out and purchased air beds so we wouldn't have to sleep on the floor anymore.  That was a big help and I appreciate them taking care of us that way.  Von Paris Movers on the other hand is a bunch of screw ups.  I do not recommend ever using them, even as a last choice because their company is not as together as it sounds.  We have never once received an apology from them acknowledging that they screwed up on our shipment.

From the day we moved in, I have been trying to stay away from purchasing fast food and trying to make things at home to save money and to eat a little healthier.  I have to say, the first few days were exceptionally hard because we were so exhausted from unpacking, sorting and organizing.  After that, we have been doing really good about eating meals at home when we can.  Once we got out to the commissary, it was good to pick up food we needed.  Occasionally we will go out and have a good time to change the pace of the daily grind.

Since moving here we have been researching cable and internet companies trying to find the best deal for our money out here.  After a week of research using internet on our phones or using Starbuck's free wireless internet, we decided the best deal for our family is Time Warner.  They are currently running a special for cable/phone/internet for $99 with free upgrade to turbo speed and free wireless internet + a $30 setup fee.  We had our service installed this morning and the installer said that everything was good to go with our televisions and that there were issues with our data line so someone would be coming by for that.  When the kids wanted to watch tv this afternoon, neither of their's worked.  Come to find out there is no cable attached inside the wall to the cable outlet on either of them.  Somehow if the installer knew that the cable was not working for either tv by checking to make sure it was working and all hooked up, he should have searched for the reason why they were not working.  When I called customer service, they said their first appointment would be Friday morning would be the earliest.  This evening when my husband called because he was so upset and angry that our cable was not installed correctly, they told him tomorrow afternoon is the earliest they have.  If these issues do not get resolved tomorrow, we will terminate our service with them and find another provider.  No one should be treated like this by their cable/internet/phone provider. 

Ok so we spoke with Time Warner's cancellation department and they told us that everything is covered under the $30 setup fee and that all 4 of our tv's and computer's are covered and that the installer did not complete the job.  She sent out a technician today who corrected the problems and now our cable is hooked up just the way we signed up for.  Thanks Alex for a job well done!

Last night our youngest had their Holiday Concert at their school.  The concert was wonderful and it is always great to see your kid up there singing with their class.  They sang Mele Kalikimaka, Feliz Navidad, Jingle Bells, Rudolph The Red Nose Reindeer, Reindeer Paws, Hippopotamus, Dradle and I Want To Wish You A Merry Christmas.

When we moved in to housing, they gave us a gift certificate to Domino's Pizza for a free large 2 topping pizza that we are redeeming tonight for dinner.  The one here has a delivery charge of $2.27.  The Hawaiian pizza was delicious!

Today I hung out with a friend who took time out of her busy schedule to show me around the area.  We drove around awhile and she showed me places I had not seen before and one of the best part is we found 99 Ranch Market.  Thank you Melody for showing me around our area!  To show her how much I appreciated it, we had some lunch.

As we settle in to our new place and our new surroundings, we will continue to venture out and discover all the wonderful places San Diego has to offer.  All the wonderful places everyone says they love about the area.