All who have accomplished great things have had a great aim, have fixed their gaze on a goal which was high, one which sometimes seemed impossible....

December 29, 2008

Hot Deal Alert

I'm re-entering the world of blogging briefly for a Hot Deal Alert. I may be stressed to the max but couponing and saving always makes me feel better ;) I would like to say Thank You to those of you who left a comment on my last post. I appreciated it so much. I cried reading the posts. Partly because I was so down and partly because it felt good to know so many people are that caring and selfless and took the time to reach out to someone who needed it. Thank You!

The week of 1/4 Walgreen's has Garnier Fructis Shampoo, Conditioner and Styling products on sale for $2.99. The January Easy Saver has a coupon for $2.00 off any Shampoo, Conditioner or Styling products (excluding Deep Conditioner 10.2 oz, Serum 5.1 oz or Treatment 4.2 oz) and there are coupons for $1.00 off any Garnier Shampoo or Conditioner and $1.00 Garnier Styling Products (exp. 1.31.09). This will make them FREE! You still have time to order these coupons in bulk off ebay. I ordered them for $1.50 per set of 20. So go get yours in time for this sale! I'd like to add this is the perfect sale to take advantage of for charity. Womens shelters can use Shampoo and Conditioner and would greatly appreciate it, especially this time of year!

Happy Saving!

December 17, 2008

I'm taking a break

I'll keep this short. I'm taking a break from my blog. Right now maybe the best thing for me is to keep blogging but I just can't bring myself to even get on here. I haven't eaten or slept in days. My life has turned upside down.

In less than a week I've come a step away from divorce and one of our dear friends was found dead at only 24 years old.

Just saying it out loud to someone other than family made me feel better.

I officially hate this Holiday Season and all the stress that has come along with it.

December 11, 2008

Could this be the end? Will Little Caylee get a proper burial?

Body of Small Child found near Anthony Home.

Fox News story here. Yahoo News story here.

December 9, 2008

December Deals

I haven't been as busy this month due because I have been concentrating on Christmas shopping but I picked up a few good deals this month already.


I double dipped in November using the November and December Easy Saver catalog for this transaction

Transaction #1

(2) BioInfusion Shampoo and Conditioner 33.8 Ounce Bottles on Sale 2/$20
*Used (2) $5/1 December Easy Saver Q's
*Submitted for $10 November Easy Saver Rebate when you spend $20 on BioInfusion

Final Price = FREE

Transaction #2 ~ These next deals are current

(2) Schick Titanium Razor/Trimmer on Sale $6.99
*Used $/1 December All You Coupon
*Used $3/1 December ESQ

Final Price = FREE

Reynolds Wrap Aluminum Foil regular price $1.60
*Used (2) In Ad Coupons making them $.99 each
*Used $1/1 coupon from 11/16 SS

Final Price = FREE

A small filler will be needed to eat the overage.


Transaction #1

(10) Glade Aerosol Sprays regular price $.86
*Used (5) $1/2 Glade from 11/2 SS

Final Price = $3.60


Transaction #1

(4) Air Wick Lumin Airs on Sale for $4.99
*Used (4) $5/1 from 11/7 SS

Final Price = FREE

(9) Rayovac 2 pack Alkaline Batteries found in $1 Spot (not all pictures because so many things needed batteries at our house :)
*Used $1/1 from 11/7 SS

Final Price = FREE

Threw in $2 creamer as a filler to eat overage. I needed creamer anyway.

Looking Back and Looking Forward

On Sunday I sat down with the Post Dispatch and a front page article caught my eye. The title was "The Fight to Save the Dying Mall" by Todd C. Frankel. I read the first few lines and went to turn the page when I read a small sentence right next to the photo that went along with the story "Northwest Plaza once had 210 stores. Now it has fewer than 40". Northwest Plaza is located about 15 miles from my home in St. Ann. For those of you who don't know I live in Maryland Heights and St. Ann is no further away from us than upscale Creve Coeur and Chesterfield. Maryland Heights borders Creve Coeur, St. Charles, Chesterfield and we also border Bridgeton and St. Ann so this article hit home for me. Though I have never shopped at this mall I have driven by it and after reading the article which can be found here, I wondered how I felt about the possibility of the idea of reinventing it and pouring money into it to save it. $96 Million to as high as $250 Million to be exact. Some Tax Payer money no less. I wondered about how good of an idea this could possibly be. I wondered about the affect it might have on my area. Good or Bad.

A little history on the Northwest Plaza Mall: It opened in 1963 and is St. Louis largest mall spanning 1.7 Million Square Feet. Since it's opening it has changed ownership and names quite a few times and many stores have come and gone, leaving empty stores and and almost empty food court. The Mall is now owned by Somera and managed by General Growth Properties with a plan to turn Northwest Plaza into Lindbergh Town Center.

Last night I logged on to find an interesting blog post in my Google Reader from one of my favorite blog 56 Houses Left entitled "A Dying Mall....and the ill STL". I was engrossed in the blog entry from the first paragraph and for the next few minutes I read about this mall from the Authors point of view. It got me thinking and I did a little research.

I decided to see what it was with this particular mall in this particular area and it's real reason for it's demise. I wont beat around the bush. I am a nervous person by nature and parts of St. Ann scare the crap out of me. All cities have crime, I'm not oblivious to that. I've shopped at Walmart across from NWP and had the door closed locked on several occasions due to shoplifters and once a very suspicious "emergency" that has caused me not to go back. This is the same Walmart they plan to merge into the new NWP as early as 2010. I decided to do a little investigating and reach outside of my own experience with this area.

I have been made aware of the problems this area faces just by going there but what happened in the past? Has it always been like this? Are the problems that Walmart has today the same problems that NWP had that eventually led to its demise? Or did it play only a small role? The story in the PD says nothing much about why the mall is what it is now or it's crime history and how it might have played a part. It contributes it to the economy but only briefly and talks more about it's future. I had to ask myself, if it really is the economy then why try and bring it back to life during a recession? It's no secret malls aren't doing as well as they were only a few year ago but you don't see West County Mall or Galleria as empty and as dismal as NWP.

After I Googled the mall I was met with tons of stories on the crime the mall and surrounding area endured. I read about mall shootings and fights. Gang violence and shoplifters. On Christmas Eve in 94 a murder occured in Famous Barr.

As I read some contribute it to demographics, others to the Management Co, other to the economy. All don't seem to have changed. This mall will still be owned by this company after the renovations, it will still be located in the same area and as of right now the economy isn't getting any better. At least not to a place where it can support another mall and bring in the income it takes to make a mall of this magnitude thrive.

Could this renovation and restructure be a good thing for this area? In a struggling economy is it the right thing to do? Would this bring more life to the area that sits only 15 miles from my home? Or is this a waste of time and money? With the economy the way it is and the clear problems with crime in this area, will it hurt the town of St. Ann or help it?

Here is a picture of the mall during it's prime:

Here is the mall as of now:

At this point it's clear this mall is in trouble but I'm not sure a remodel will help. I'll be watching as plans move forward. I'm interested to see the outcome.

December 8, 2008

Please Step Out of Google Reader

and check out the new layout.

Like? Dislike? Like the other one better?

'Tis the Season

This weekend was filled with Christmas Spirit as we put up our first Christmas Tree in our new home. We go through this tradition a lot as we've put up 5 trees in 5 homes in 7 years but it wasn't any less special.

I did a lot of decorating this year. We set up my Christmas Bears and Santa that my Aunt gave me my first Christmas away from home and a few other decorations I forgot I even had because they hadn't been up the last 2 years.

I love my cheesy little blocks. They are actually vases but they look like Ice Cubes. I'm a dork, I know.

Now for the tree. This year I changed the colors of our tree from Blue and White Theme to White and Silver "Icicle Theme" and I was really happy with how the tree turned out.

Finding and putting up the tree was a pain. We search for miles to find a tree lot with a 7 ft tall skinny tree. We only had about 36 inches of space coming away from the wall to fit a tree in. One of the minuses of having a smaller house with over sized furniture. It was so frustrating trying to find a skinny tree and everyone looked at us like we were crazy when we asked for the skinniest tree they had. I don't know how many times I heard "People usually ask for the fat ones". We finally found our little tree and were so glad to get it home. My nose was red and my ears were frozen from being out in the cold. Of course while putting up the tree we managed to knock my candle holder off the ledge and we broke my candles and dented the floor. Bummer. Once the tree was up we all decorated it and keeping with tradition, at the very end, Josh put the Angel on top while we all stood and watched. Then my kids broke the peaceful silence with the question "Mom, can we eat all the candy canes now"? Ah, Christmas is finally here.

December 7, 2008

Someone is getting big!

Please forgive me but I need to be a major attention whore right now and show of my youngest Furbaby, Cowboy. Otherwise known as Cow Cow, Tow Tow, How Now Brown Cow and Cowmanshu. I took some new pictures of him today and cannot believe how big he is getting! I am so proud of him and what a pretty boy he is becoming.

Here he was at 6 weeks

and here he is today at almost 9 months!

Ya, I'm holding a piece of cheese next to the camera :) It's the only way to make him "sit pretty".

December 6, 2008

In the words of Jodie Sweetin ....How Rude!

Customer Service: Assistance and other resources that a company provides to the people who use or buy its products or services.

So when I call your store and ask if you have an item in your store, so that I can avoid driving to every location in the St. Louis area to find it, you check and see, right? Then you kindly let me know whether or not you have it and if you do then they can come and purchase it, right? One would think so.

So I call a certain clothing store ::cough Forever 21 cough:: in search of this little number

The Margaux Lace Dress I saw on their website. After I spent 3 hours scouring 3 stores to find this dress yesterday:

With no luck I might add, I wasn't about to spend another 3 hours looking for another freaking dress. My bright Idea? Call the stores and see if they have it in stock so I don't have to run around in the cold and in busy malls on a Saturday.

I was hung up on when I called the first store. They picked up, I heard laughing and the phone clicked off. Tried again, no answer. So I call the second store. The girl on the other end proceeds to tell me she doesn't look for items for customers because that's not her job. I asked her if I could speak to someone who could help and she then tells me she is the manager and she is not helping me. Ya right you are the manager. Whatever. So then I try the 3rd store and at first the call was friendly and I ask if they have this dress in or if they plan to get it in anytime in the next week and the lady puts me on hold. Another woman picks up and asks what I am looking for again. I tell her and she puts me back on hold. After 10 minutes someone else gets on the phone with me and says "Hello" I said "Hi, I was put on hold. Someone is looking for a dress for me" then she says "Oh, I think the girl helping you just went to lunch. She must have forgotten you". I hung up.

Wow. You have to be kidding me. If this dress saga continues I will be wearing my PJ's to the office Christmas Party.

December 5, 2008

Walgreens Deals for December 7th-13th

I'm going to try to get in the habit of posting deals before they come up rather than after.

Here are the few deals I see for the week of the 7th.

Schick Titanium Razor on Sale $6.99
*Use $4/1 from December All You Mag
*Use $3/1 Easy Saver

Final Price = FREE

Reynolds Wrap Aluminum Foil on Sale $.99
*Use $1/1 from 11/16 Smart Source or 12/8 Smart Source
*Use Walgreens In Ad Q on Page 16

Final Price = FREE

Scotch Magic or Wrapping Tape 3 pack on Sale 2/$2
*Submit for $2 December Rebate

Final price = FREE

M&M's Premiums Candy on Sale 2/$8
*Use $1/1 Easy Saver Q
*Use (2) $1/1 from 11/16 Red Plum

Final price = 2/$5 or $2.50 each ~ Seriously a value for little boxes of Heaven!

Hershey's Holiday Candy on Sale 4/$10
*Use $1.50/1 WYB 3 Bags Hershey Q from 11/16 Smart Source
*Submit for $5 December Easy Saver Rebate

Final Price = 4/$3.50 Less than $1 a bag!

This next one is a YMMV meaning it MIGHT work at your Wags depending on their policy.

Maybelline New York Lipstick, Gloss and Liner BOGO this week. Pick out products around $8. Most are priced right around here anyway.
*Use (2) $4/1 Coupons from the 12/7 SS paired with the BOGO to get them both free!

Right now is advertising some lipcolor at $3.99 and in this case you only use 1 coupon. Prices vary by location.

We are still in the process of figuring this one out as one Sunday Coupon Preview site is saying this coupon will be in the paper and the other is not. I'll update when I know for sure.

Happy Saving!

Airwick and Pepsi Deals

This week at Target they are running a couple good deals. I would have posted this sooner but I didn't even know these deals were going on until I stopped in today to get coffee. I was just browsing around and picked up a few good deals. My coffee was also $4 cheaper.

I heart Target.

Buy 5 qualifying Pepsi Products for $15 and receive a $5 Gift Card at checkout.

Final Price = 5/$10 or $2 per pack & .17 a can

Air Wick Freshmatic Ultra Starter Kit on Sale for $5.99
*Use $5/1 coupon from 11/16 Smart Source

Final Price = $.99 each

December 4, 2008

Fashion Dilemma & Holiday Party DONT'S!

As a female you would think I would have at least one qualifying dress to wear to Josh and I's upcoming office party. However as I go through my closet a mere 9 days before said party I realize unless I plan to wear dressy pants and a nice top, I'm going naked and that wont be pretty. I have not one cute dress to wear. Last year the party was a Dave & Busters and I thought I dressed correctly but I walked in and realized I must have missed the memo because I was the only one wearing pants, besides the guys ;) I guess that's what you get when a bunch of guys put together a Holiday Party and leave out the attire section on the invite. Sheesh.

My dilemma is attempting to find the right dress in a week. I need a dress that goes well under a thigh length black coat and pairs nicely with plain black, peep toe pumps.

I found these four at Forever 21. All under $30. Top two are my fav's so far. Thoughts?

Just for laughs
20 Things NOT to do at your Holiday Office Party
1. Enforce the mistletoe rule: Make out with your boss, intern, or the significant other of either.
2. Interpret "dress festive" to include anything that could be worn as lingerie.
3. Split a bottle of anything with your assistant.
4. Wear reindeer ears and antlers.
5. Shovel shrimp from the buffet table onto your plate like it's your last meal.
6. Use a lull in conversation to force your table to watch you try to tie a cherry stem into a knot. This should especially be avoided if it takes you 25 minutes to do it.
7. Dance on anything other than the floor.
8. Use the open bar as an opportunity to get your boss - or yourself - plastered and ask for a promotion.
9. Sit on Santa’s (a.k.a. Eduardo from IT) lap.
10. Wear a holiday sweater.
11. Spend all night schmoozing with the interns.
12. Drink too much and share how you really feel about everyone in your department.
13. Wear a mistletoe headband.
14. Talk about work the whole time. It's not the time or place for a heated discussion about network security.
15. Hit on a coworker's spouse.
16. Hit on a coworker's very mature-looking teenage son.
17. Stand next to Ellen from Accounting, who gets amorous when she drinks.
18. Anything in the presence of a camera that you wouldn't want photographic evidence of in the company newsletter.
19. Raid the open bar like it’s an ex’s wedding reception.
20. Invite the boss to the after-party.