Sunday, November 29, 2009

As the long weekend comes to an end...

Getting ready for a new work week! Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving holiday - we sure did! Now I'm getting everything ready for next week - preparing bottles for pumping, laying out Jakes clothes for the week, making lunches, etc.

Tomorrow is cyber-monday! Make sure to check out your favorite online stores for any deals. I know Sears, Target, JC Penny's are having big sales. As is Amazon - make sure to check out their CyberMonday specials. They've been having great deals all week long - yesterday I got 3 DVDs for Jimmy at 70% off. You can also sign up for a one month trial of Amazon Prime and receive free two day shipping on anything you spend (no minimum purchase). I just signed up yesterday and it is AWESOME!! Just make sure to "Manage Your Prime Membership" and turn off the automatic upgrade. Thanks to Thrifty Florida Mama for the heads up!!

As promised, here are some of the baby clubs that I'm signed up for. I've actually signed up for several others (Winn-Dixie and Sav-a-lot) but these are the only ones I've actually received anything from. Sign up and save!
  • Enfamil Family Beginnings - They send samples, formula checks, coupons, and more!
  • Similac Strong Moms - They send a sample of their Advance and their Soy formula, formula checks, and lots of cute tips and milestone info as the months progress!
  • Publix Baby Club - They send a bunch of great coupons (that can be stacked with manufacterer's coupons), an informational book, and quarterly newsletters with coupons. But sign up early - it takes months to get your first mailing.
  • Beechnut - Sign up for their e-newsletter for coupons in your email. Plus, I just signed up for the parent pack (sign up by going to contact us). I haven't received it yet, but it should have some great coupons!
  • Earth's Best - Get coupons in their monthly newsletter, and you can print several of their coupons.
  • Gerber/Nestle - They send an array of awesome coupons! They send based on the stage of your baby - right now they've been sending coupons for bottles, pacifiers, and nursing pads, then they move up to baby food, etc. I haven't gotten any in a while, but they really are great coupons!
Well off to another week!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Babies, Babies, Babies...

This post is in honor of Baby Mia who was born yesterday (Thanksgiving) at 10p.m. She is 8 lbs, 15 oz, 22 inches, a full head of hair and as beautiful as it gets! Congrats to Elizabeth & Manny!! It seems everyone is having babies right now - I can think of 10 friends that are expecting!! So here are a few things that I wished I would've known about before I had baby Jake. :)

1. Stocking up on diapers - Most people who know me saw the insane amount of diapers that I stocked up on. I would wait till diapers were on sale and then use coupons. I paid on average $7-$8 per jumbo pack - and I had a TON of them. I bought in every size and brand (in case of allergies, etc), but only got one or two of the newborns in case I had a big baby. Here's a GREAT resource if you want to buy diapers ahead - (do a search for the article "using growth charts to predict diaper needs")

2. Baby Clothes - I had them all sorted in the closet from newborn, 0-3 mos, 3-6 mos, etc. What I didn't realize is that some brands are smaller than others. So when I moved Jake up to the 3-6 mos clothes several of them were WAY too small. Now I hold the clothes up to each other and sort them in order of actual size rather than what their labels claim.

3. Sign up for the baby programs EARLY! I'll try to post a list of the various baby programs you can sign up for by end of the weekend, just a few to mention,, and Sign up as early as you can for these clubs. For some it takes a while to get the coupons. The Publix Baby Club coupons didn't get to me until Jake was already 3 mos old - and I signed up when I was like 7 mos preggo! The others, like Similac and Gerber/Nestle will send you coupons while you are pregnant too - that you can use when you see great deals (some times you can get the ready made formula for next-to-nothing when you use those coupons) then you can have a few kinds on hand to try out on baby when he/she's born.

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!! Ours was great! We had my cousins, mom & bro visiting as well as Stephen and Jimmy's mom & her husband. It was lots of fun! Jimmy deep fried the turkey - and caught it on fire - but it turned out delic anyways!!

Also, just an update on my Black Friday shopping experience. It ended about as quickly as it began! I couldn't go to any of the really good sales (Walmart/Target/etc) because Jimmy had to be at work from 5 am - noon, which is when most of them occurred. So instead I decided to try out the ToysRUs/BabiesRUs experience - as they had a few items I was interested in. I was SOOO naive in the whole ordeal. They opened at midnight, so at 12:15 I pull into the parking lot. The entire shopping center was packed with cars. So I'm looking around - no TJ Maxx is closed, no HH Gregg is closed, all the other stores looked closed. But then I realize there is a HUGE line outside of Ross. So I think to myself, "WOW Ross must have some great deals tomorrow..." NO actually the line for ToysRUS was just that long. It went about 10 stores down... They were at max capacity and would only let in as many people as had just left. So after about 30 minutes, I decided that no deal was worth that wait... Next time, if there is a deal I REALLY want, I'll be prepared (chair, coffee, etc). On a side note though, I went back at 4 pm today and still got all the deals I wanted (even the ones that ended at 1 pm rang up as the discounted prices). So I still feel like it was a success - and a definite eye opener!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Fool Me Once Shame on You...

Today I picked up Jacob's Christmas pictures from Sears and - while they are super cute - it just reminds me that "they got me." It's not often that I get ripped off, but about two weeks ago, I sure did... I used one of those portrait coupons (36 pics for $4.99) at Sears, but didn't read the fine print. If I wanted any other sheets - other than the package - they would be $20 each! And of course, two of the pictures were to die for. I asked if I could order them later online and, of course, was told they'd still be $20 plus an additional $10 reorder fee and S&H. So I sucked it up and paid the extra $20 for one sheet.

Lesson: When I got home, out of curiousity I went to see if I could order online. And sure enough, they were the standard $9.99 per sheet - PLUS only S&H. And I could order any of the session prints. AND when I picked up my pics today, they had printed extra of the two images that I ordered to try to upsell me. Except they were 2 sheets for $10! And one of the sheets was an enhanced version (which costs more). So for a total of $30, I got three of the other pose - so in the end it worked out! Still bitter though. (BTW, when I went to JC Penny, they didn't try to trick me... )

Also, yesterday I downloaded - it's similar to Photoshop (I'm sure with fewer bells & whistles) but FREE! And it works really great and you can't beat the price. To think, I was going to buy Photoshop Elements!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Jake's Meltdown

So last night we were so excited to go to Halifax Uncorked - a food & wine festival. There were 12 different restaurants from around Daytona offering samplings. BUT we made it in the door for all of 20 seconds before Jake had a complete meltdown. It was just too much - too many people, too loud, not to mention the Jazz music playing in the background. He was screaming in a high pitch voice that I've only really heard when he got his shots. We tried to calm him down but he wanted no part of it. So, we turned around and went back home. But even when we got back home, he continued screaming for about 2 hours before finally calming back down. I felt so bad! I had no idea it would be so traumatizing for him.

We are going to try to go back today - but don't worry Jake - you'll be going to a babysitter!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Black Friday

While I'm not usually a big Black Friday shopper, I am going to give it a shot this year. I don't know how accurate it is but has all the ads ahead of time. Some good stuff! I tend to steer clear of the big ticket items - as I'm not willing to fight for them.I'm super excited about the Michaels, Walmart and ToysRUs ads in particular!! Just not sure just how early I'm going to get up...

Oh and Tradewinds Island Resorts is also doing a special for $25 room nights starting at 6 am if you follow them on twitter. I have NO idea how long they'll be offering it or what restrictions - but you better believe I'm going to try to get my hands on a CHEAP vaca! Follow them @TWResorts!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

My Name is Thrifty

In college, my best friends and I (the "fab 5") gave each other nicknames. It's no real surprise that mine was "Thrifty." Back then, it was because I was known for saving a handful of popcorn to eat the next day or saving one slice of tomato.

But it actually goes back MUCH further. Bargain-shopping runs in my blood. Its a running joke among family and friends that my mother needs to start Coupon-aholics anonymous. She had a garbage bag full of non-expiration date coupons alone! She's taught me how to save money and take advantage of great deals.

And if there is one thing I love it is getting a great bargain. There is no better feeling than knowing you bought something as cheap as possible - especially now when I have a baby and my husband lost his well-paying job. But not only do I like getting bargains - I like sharing them! So that's what I plan to do with my blog - share some of the deals and bargains that I find (and throw in a few fun stories about my life).