Home > Archive: April, 2011

Archive for April, 2011

my house looks naked

April 30th, 2011 at 07:41 pm

I've been moving stuff out of the upstairs rooms in preparation for the new carpet. It looks naked up there. I had to take out the rugs and take down all the pictures on the wall. I have moved several of the smaller pieces of furniture into another room. Very bare - reminds me of moving. It looks forlorn instead of warm Smile

Parents and I went to Rosie's last night. Dad loves their prime rib special on Fridays. However last night it wasn't very good. The meat was raw, he asked for medium rare. He took half home to cook and eat today. My meal wasn't that good either. I only ate a couple bites of the potatoes - they had a weird taste. And the chicken tenders weren't very tender. Oh well, usually they are so good. Maybe they got a new cook or something. Spent $10.15

Between the carpet and property taxes last month I spent 3 times what I normally do in a month. Over $5K. $3900 was carpet and taxes. I generally spent $1200 - 1500 a month. I only ate out 5 times, which is pretty low for me, my groceries went up because of that and the costly salmon purchase.

I finished reading the library book Too Hot to Hold by Stephanie Tyler. Romance - pretty good.

more discounted gift cards

April 29th, 2011 at 08:23 pm

I purchased $500+ more in Home Depot gift cards from Gift Card Rescue today. They were discounted 8%. I still have to pay for the downstairs carpet, which will be another $2500 in a month or so, so I'm trying to get a couple thousand more in cards. They go pretty fast.

I also got a $50 Home Depot card for Mother's Day. Every year mom wants bedding plants for Mother's day, but it's too early to plant them here. So if I buy them for her and she has to keep them in her garage for 2 or 3 weeks. Last year I started buying her gift cards so she can buy them herself when she's ready to plant them. She gets $50 worth of plants and I only paid $46, enough left to buy the card Smile

I was looking at cards at Walmart yesterday - so ridiculous. The average card was over $5 and I didn't see any under $3. I'll look at Walgreens or one of the grocery stores before deciding.

I went to Safeway today and picked up 2 bottles of Kraft salad dressing for .98 after coupon.

Coupon total ytd = 113.51
RX total = 79.45
Discounted Gift Cards = 95.41
Total = 288.37

I got a 3 free Atkins bars in the mail as samples this week. I tried the chocolate, caramel, peanut nugaunt (sp) one and it was surprisingly good. I'll have to see what the others are like.

I also got a rebate check for $4.31 in the mail.

I finished reading the library book Loose Ends by Tara Janzen. Mystery/Romance - very good.

spending like there is no tomorrow

April 28th, 2011 at 08:55 pm

I got gas today, filled up my car with 10+ gal and 2 5 gal cans. I had a .60/gal discount from King Soopers so the cost after discount was $2.99/gal - spent $62.43. My dad filled up to with the discount too, don't know how many gallons he got. I wonder when I will be spending a $100 for a fillup. I was shocked at $50 and now it just seems inevitable that it will be a ridiculous amount every time.

I went to Home Depot and ordered the carpet for the upstairs. Spent $2487.42. I paid a $1000 of it in gift cards that I got discounted at 8%, saving me $80. The rest went on a credit card that pays 5% back on Home Improvement items for this quarter. Now I have to start moving as much stuff out of those rooms as possible.

I fixed my expensive salmon last night and it was delicious, but still not worth $6 for the small portion. I have leftovers for lunch today with a good salad.

I got a rebate check for $4.31 in the mail.

I finished reading my book Dark Slayer by Christine Feehan. Paranormal - very good.

costly mistake

April 27th, 2011 at 07:17 pm

I went to King Soopers yesterday for groceries and made a very bad mistake. It was late, I was hungry and I just screwed up. I wanted some salmon and they had it on sale for $6.99/lb. I saw some in the display case that said 5.99 and they looked good, so I asked the meat guy for 6 pieces. I was going to make 2 this week and freeze the rest. Well I got several other things and I knew my bill would be higher than usual, so after the coupons and RX discount I still owed $19.55. When I got home I looked at the receipt more closely and saw that they charged me $35.94 for the salmon. I almost had a heart attack. Turns out it was 5.99 per 5 oz portion. Well I didn't feel right taking it back, since it was my mistake and the store can't resell it, so I guess I will be eating some really expensive salmon. I used up $45.46 of my RX coupons.

I did get a couple of good deals. 2 doz eggs for .50/each and large Jello for .50 each and 2 free 2 liter bottles of Big Red, which goes to the food pantry.

I had to stop at Walmart on the way home to get bagged salad. They had their brand for $1.50/bag and it was over $3 at King Soopers. I also got 2 40 oz bottles of Heinz ketchup for free, which will go to the food pantry. The ketchup is on sale for $1.98 and I had 2 $2 coupons. So I actually made .04 cents that I used on the salad.

Coupon total ytd = 112.01
RX total = 79.45
Discounted Gift Cards = 52.47
Total = 243.93

Stocks are doing well right now and I reached my sell point for the year so I sold $10,000 worth of stocks today.

I finished reading Matters of the Blood by Maria Lima. Paranormal - pretty good.


April 25th, 2011 at 07:11 pm

That's how I feel about the deals lately - eh. There hasn't been anything very good and I feel the loss of the hunt Smile I hope they pick up soon. I haven't bought hardly anything for the food pantry this month.

Mom and her sisters are still cleaning out grandma's house. They are giving back the stuff to people who gave it to grandma and grandpa. I told mom if that's the criteria I'm only giving them gift cards or things I know they will use up from now on Smile They gave back 2 christmas stockings that I gave them from at least 6 or 7 years ago. They will go in the goodwill/garage sale pile.

I finished my first miniature room in a couple of years. I just haven't been in the mood. It was a back yard barbeque scene. It's been sitting on my craft table for at least 2 years and only needed to be finished. It took around 3 hours to finish up.

I finished reading the library book The Mirror Prince by Violette Malan. Sci/Fi - very good.

a lovely day

April 23rd, 2011 at 07:57 pm

It is cloudy and gray with wind gusts of 40 mph. However, since my mom went down to my grandma's to clean out more of her house, I decided not to walk today. Because I'm not going outside walking I decided to sleep in late and not take a shower or get dressed. I'm lounging around in sweats. I started a really good book and plan to spend most of the day reading. Lunch and dinner are already cooked and just needs to be heated up, so a lovely day.

Last night I made my roast chicken with bacon, which is wonderful. Basically olive oil, salt and pepper chicken strips. Add a piece of bacon on top and roast for 15 min in oven at 450 degrees. I had it with green beans and tomatoes. For lunch today I will have leftovers of the chicken and a large salad, with the veggies already prepared. The bacon really keeps the chicken moist, even when reheated.

For dinner I have a piece of leftover steak, which I will have with grilled onions, green beans and tomatoes.

I spent $50 at Home Depot yesterday to have someone come and measure my house for carpet next Tuesday. They will reimburse the amount when I get the carpet installed. It's going to cost approx $5000 to get the Martha Stewart Living carpet I want. It has a diamond pattern in it. The color is called carton. I originally wanted stainmaster carpet, but it's $2500 more. This has a better warranty and is comparable for stains. The cost includes extra fees for removing and taking away the old carpet, moving furniture and installing on stairs. I plan to stay here for another 10 years, otherwise I would have gone with a cheaper carpet.

Mom told me yesterday she is almost out of her discounted J.C. Penny cards, so I ordered $200 worth yesterday from Gift Card Rescue and got them at 15% off.

I finished reading my book Dress Her in Indigo by John D. MacDonald. Mystery - pretty good.

Catch 22

April 21st, 2011 at 08:17 pm

Coupon total ytd = 96.44
RX total = 33.99
Discounted Gift Cards = 52.47
Total = 182.90

If you want to lose weight, 'They' say you should drink 9 glasses of water + 1 for every 25 lbs you are overweight. 'They' say you should get a good nights sleep, if you want to lose weight. Well if I drink 10 glasses of water, I'm not going to get a good nights sleep. I'll be up all night peeing Smile

I filled another prescription at King Soopers and spent $5.80. They sent me a survey asking why I transfered a prescription and they added another $5 to my card for turning the survey in.

I also got 2 bunches of radishes and 2 doz eggs. The eggs were .50/each. On sale for $1 and I had a coupon for .55/2, which was doubled. Paid for everything with prescription coupons.

I paid a dr bill of $36.85 also.

I plan to buy some Martha Stewart Living carpet at Home Depot soon, so I'm buying discounted gift cards at 8% off. Yesterday I bought $400+ from Card Pool.

I finished reading the library book Primal. Paranormal short stories, including one by Lora Leigh. Very good.


April 20th, 2011 at 06:57 pm

my sister's divorce was final yesterday. She did much better than she expected to. Her and my mom have been worrying about 'what if scenarios' for weeks and driving me crazy with it. I kept saying it will turn out ok, the courts aren't out to get you. They see tons of these things and they can tell a lot when someone is BS-ing. Plus you have everything in black and white, receipts, pictures etc.

He was trying to claim he was disabled and needed her to support him even though he works construction and makes almost 60K/year. She has fibermyalgia (sp?) and is on several meds, so they said she was just as disabled as he is. He said he was 50 and could lose his job, well she is 48 and could lose hers just as easy. He also claimed she wouldn't be making the money she is, if it wasn't for him. According to him, he took care of the kids 24/7 while she went to college. She went 1 night a week and his mom took care of the kids. But even so, if it wasn't for him, she wouldn't have the kids and she had other family here, my mom or I would have babysat as needed. He was gone almost every weekend hunting or working side jobs for which he kept all the money, while all her bonuses were spent on the family.

He ends up having to pay only $50 a month child support, which is ridiculous, but it's only for 2 more years for the youngest. He gets half her 401K, minus what was in it when they got married. And he gets half the equity in the house when they sell it, minus what she's paying in mortgage payment from the time he moved out till the time she sells it. They both keep their personal stuff. All in all pretty good. She was afraid she'd have to pay maintenance and lose her stock options and lose half the kids college money.

I finished reading the library book Dragonsblood by Todd McCaffrey. Sci/Fi - very good.


April 19th, 2011 at 08:13 pm

Since I've turned 50 I think I've gotten marketing from AARP in the mail every week. I've resisted joining since I didn't see anything in their material that made me think it was a good deal for $17/year. I have seen Walgreens give $5 RRs for buying $20 in the past and I noticed a sign today saying if you use your AARP card every time you get offers from them, but still not sold. Does anyone have good reasons to join this? Or bad ones to not join?

Coupon total ytd = 95.44
RX total = 32.01
Discounted Gift Cards = 18.00
Total = 145.45

I got some groceries this morning. Went to Safeway, Walgreens and King Soopers.

At Safeway I got $6 in produce and paid $5 after a $1 coupon.

At Walgreens I got 2 packages of Oscar Meyer bacon and 4 bags of David's sunflower seeds. The bacon was on sale for $6 after $1 RR. The sunflower seeds were on sale for $1/each. Used $11 in RRs from last week and .29 on a gift card bought with RRs. No out of pocket. I wanted some of the Green Giant green beans for .24 but they were sold out. I got a raincheck.

At King Soopers I picked up a prescription, paid $2.22 and they added another $25 to my card for groceries. I spent .98 using my RX coupon for 2 large boxes sugar free cherry Jello. I had a coupon for .55/2 that doubled. They were on sale for .99/each.

My oldest niece called last night and talked for an hour or so. She got her hair cut. I know she will look beautiful, but can't imagine what it looks like from the description. It was down past her hips before she cut it. She said one side is shaved now and the other is like a pixie cut. Ooookay. Smile She said she walked in a Salon and asked the guy to go crazy.

She was explaining how much she wants to travel and learn about other cultures and her other grandma asked her why she wanted to do that and she said it was because she hates America. I asked her to explain that and she said we're so materialistic and care about looks so much and we're obese etc. I really hate the indoctrination they get in college about how bad America is and not how good we are. We are a great nation and we have done great things in the world. I wish it wasn't so one-sided in the schools.

The other countries are better because they don't waste and they live communally helping each other etc. Hmmm, hopefully one day she'll grow up a little and see both sides. Anytime a culture has a lot of something they waste it. Communal living means a few people do most of the work and some people do none. People are people and they will always have disagreements living together - it's not one big happy family.

I think most of the people in tribes and poor cultures would jump at the chance to have electricity and be warm or cool as needed. To have hot and cold running water that is safe to drink. To be clean and healty and have enough to eat with a variety of choices. To be educated and given opportunities.

Just because we live in a materialistic world doesn't mean we have to be materialistic. We don't have to buy in to the appearances lifestyle. We don't have to be obese and eat junk food. It's not really a choice when you don't get to choose if you want to live in poverty, but it's imposed on you by local conditions.

I finished reading my book Styx's Storm by Lora Leigh. Paranormal - very good.

produce shopping

April 17th, 2011 at 07:42 pm

Safeway has their Fresh Express bagged salads on sale for $1/bag. I normally buy lettuce and chop it myself, however when the price is $1/bag I'll buy it. I got 2 bags mixed lettuce, and 1 bag spinach for $1/each. I'll mix these all together. I also got a bag of shredded cabbage for $1.59 and a bunch of radishes for .99. Since the produce was over $5 I was able to use a $1 off produce coupon, making one of my bags free. I'll have a couple large salads today and tomorrow and get some more on Tuesday, when the sale ends.

I also got 2 doz medium eggs for .99. They were priced .99/each and I had a coupon for .55 of 2 doz eggs which doubled to .99. The large eggs were $1.79 which is really high.

Coupon total ytd = 82.21
RX total = 31.03
Discounted Gift Cards = 18.00
Total = 128.94

HBO is free this weekend with DirectTV and I've watched a couple more movies. Terminator Salvation and Clash of the Titans and It's Complicated. Today I see Jonah Hex, and Sherlock Holmes is on. I'll try to catch them. It's free thru tomorrow.

I finished reading my book Dragon Blood by Patricia Briggs. Sci/Fi - very good.

friendly visit

April 16th, 2011 at 11:14 pm

Well we didn't make it to Cheddars. When we got there it was an hour wait so we went to Chili's instead.

Today a friend of mine came over and we watched movies and had a Papa Murphey pizza. I paid $7 for the pizza. We watched Aliens vs Predators 2 which I got from Netflix. Not that good. We also watched the Dark Knight, which I got from the library - very good. I hadn't seen it before.

It was a fun day.

I finished reading the library book The Soldier King by Violette Malan. Sci/Fi - very good.

dad's bday

April 15th, 2011 at 07:13 pm

My dad's bday is today. Sister, youngest niece, mom and I are taking him to Cheddars. It's a new restaraunt that just opened in the next town over. None of us have been there before. Hope it's good.

Afterwards we will go back to moms to open presents and have dessert. Lemon pie from Schwan's - yummy!

I got dad a gift card to Elephant Bar at 15% discount and 2 bags of black jelly beans, his favorite.

I fixed scrimp scampi last night in a butter and garlic sauce with green beans and tomatoes on the side. It was really good. I'll do it again next week since I still have half the shrimp left.

I had to turn the furnace back up. I had left it at 58 for about 2 weeks, but it's been below freezing here for a couple days so I upped it to 62. Supposed to snow next week. We haven't gotten our big snow storm yet this year and we usually get one in April so maybe... We did get some rain the other day which will help with moisture. We are 70% below normal for the year.

I finished reading my book Dragon Bones by Patricia Briggs. Sci/Fi - very good.

good kidney news

April 14th, 2011 at 07:39 pm

Coupon total ytd = 80.21
RX total = 31.03
Discounted Gift Cards = 18.00
Total = 128.94

I had a kidney dr appt yesterday so went in town. The medicine has taken care of my calcium problem and now my kidneys have normal amounts of calcium in them. The Dr said if I continue this way I only have a 5% chance of getting another kidney stone - good news. I just have to continue to take the medicine the rest of my life Frown

I stopped at Border's and got 2 books. I had coupons to save $3.18/each and paid with my reward card from Discover.

My oldest niece sent me a list of books and movies she wants for her dbay in June. I ordered a discounted gift card to Borders from Plastic Jungle to help pay for some of it. I got a $50 card for $42.50 saving 15%. Unfortunately when I looked yesterday Border's didn't have any of the books in stock. I may need to order them online.

Along with coupons and RX savings I'm going to start tracking discounted gift cards too.

Today I picked up a prescription from King Soopers for .57 and the added $10 to my card for groceries because I had a $10 Target prescription coupon. I got a free Luna bar and paid .99 for 2 large boxes of Jello.

I finished reading the library book Treachery in Death by J.D. Robb. Mystery - excellent.

property tax

April 12th, 2011 at 08:39 pm

I paid my property taxes today - $1,306.72. It went up $40 from last year, but the state government swears taxes didn't increase. Oh, but the mill levy increased, which increases your taxes, but taxes themselves didn't increase. Just like the taxes on car licenses didn't increase, but the fees went up $30/vehicle. They all think we're stupid.

Last night when I took my trash out for pickup I saw the neighbor lady lying on the sidewalk across the street. I asked if she was hurt and she said she wasn't sure. She's a small lady and she wanted me to help her stand to see if she could. I got behind her and picked her up, but she couldn't stand. I told her I has a roller chair I could get and we could roll her into her house and she said ok. When I came back, she thought she was pretty hurt, so I asked if she wanted me to call someone. She said her grandson lived in the unit on the corner, so I went and got him. He put her in the chair and took her inside her house. I figured I was just in the way at that point and went back to my house, telling him he could bring the chair back when they were thru with it.

I hear the ambulance show up in about 5 minutes, very fast. After awhile it left and he brought the chair back. He said they thought she dislocated her hip and they were taking her to the hospital for surgery. She's probably in her 70's.

Today while mom and I were walking I saw the grandson's wife talking to some people and stopped to ask her how the lady was. Turns out she broke her hip and is having surgery today. That's not good when you're that old.

An awful lot of people are falling down right now. I had my fall about a month ago and yesterday mom tried to fall twice on our walk. Mom said some lady came into curves with one whole side of her face black and blue from a fall on concrete. It's weird how once you hear about something it seems to happen more frequently.

I finished reading my book Wolfsbane by Patricia Briggs. Sci/Fi - very good.

in memory of

April 11th, 2011 at 08:18 pm

My mom and her sisters decided to tell everyone to donate to the charity of their choice for my grandma instead of selecting one. So I donated $100 to the food pantry that I often donate food to. Mom wasn't happy with the decision since she thinks they won't know who donated to what and won't be able to thank them.

They got an offer on her house while they were cleaning it out Friday. She lives in a very small town, less than a hundred people. The neighbors offered $35,000 which is a little low, but it means it is done with and no one has to make a 2 hour drive during the summer to water the lawn, etc. It's extremely hot down there in the summer time. They might be able to get $50K, but maybe not and it might take forever. None of them needs the money and I think it would be better to get rid of it now, but not my decision, thank goodness Smile

Coupon total ytd = 72.09
RX total = 31.03

I finished reading the library book A Hard Day's Knight by Simon R. Green. Sci/Fi - excellent.

white bean and vegetable soup

April 9th, 2011 at 08:39 pm

I made this a couple days ago and have been eating it for lunch with a hearty grain roll and an apple. It was pretty good. Some soups don't make it so well on day 2 or 3, but this one was still good. It's pretty simple.

1 small onion diced
2 large carrots small diced
2 stalks celery small diced
3 cloves garlic - garlic press
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
1 15 oz can white beans
1 10 oz can chicken broth
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon dried thyme
Olive oil


1. Saute the vegetables in the olive oil until soft. Season w/salt and pepper while sautéing
2. Add all ingredients to large pot and bring to boil
3. Reduce to simmer for at least 1 hour.

I finished reading 2 more of my Patricia Briggs books Steal the Dragon and Masques. Sci/Fi - pretty good. These are some of her early attempts and while good, not as good as her later stories.

NSD day - sortof

April 7th, 2011 at 09:08 pm

Even though I went shopping and got things at both King Soopers and Walgreens today, it was technically a no spend day since it was all free after using my pharmacy coupons and Walgreens gift cards purchased with RRs.

At Walgreens they paid me to buy more toothpaste. The food pantry is getting a lot of that lately from me.

2.99 - 6 oz Colgate Max Fresh
-1.00 coupon
2.23 - received an RR for $3, made .77. Did this twice

5.00 - 6 rolls Scott paper towels
.40 - taxes
-1.50 - q
-1.00 - WAG q
2.90 or .48/each - did this twice

14.99 - Accu Check Aviva diabetes monitor
-10.00 - q
4.99 - got back a $5 RR. There is a $15 rebate in the box - so $15 moneymaker. Will donate this

21.98 - 2 90 ct bottles Nature Made multivitamins
.88 - taxes
-10.99 - Walgreens BOGO sale
-7.00 - Nature Made q from wellness points
-1.00 - q
3.87 - added 190 points to Nature Made wellness reward program

I also put a $10 RR on another Walgreens gift card and have $11 in RRs from today.

At King Soopers I had a coupon for .40 off coleslaw and a free 1 lb. bag of mini carrots. So I got those with bananas, celery and milk. Used 44.68 of my pharmacy rewards to pay for it.

Coupon total ytd = 68.34
RX total = 15.46

I finished reading my book When Demons Walk by Patricia Briggs. Sci/Fi - very good.

a layer of protection

April 6th, 2011 at 08:25 pm

While walking yesterday my mom and I were talking about my grandma. I said, you know how things are supposed to progress, your grandparents die, then your parents and then you. With my last grandparent dead it feels like a layer between me and death is gone. I know I could die at anytime, but if I were to die naturally, then that little barrier is gone.

My mom said she feels like a layer of protection is gone from her because my grandma prayed for everyone in the family by name everyday. She feels that there is no one above her now praying for her every day. And of course my grandma had a direct line to god Smile

The funeral is Friday and visiting is tomorrow. Then comes the effort of cleaning out her stuff and trying to deal with the aftermath.

I finished reading the library book Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning. Sci/Fi - very good.