i spy- cheap shower curtains.

9 10 2011

i have had the same shower curtain since 2008 (a vintage yellow floral affair that i bought off ebay when i was attempting to set up my perfect post-divorce bachelorette pad). as with all vinyl shower curtains, it periodically gets covered in mildewy scunge and requires a good scraping. however, after 3 long years of service, it’s not quite bouncing back the way it once did. also, getting on your hands and knees and scrubbing down a vinyl shower curtain with with a bottle of formula 409 and a mr. clean magic eraser is tiresome.

honestly, i would have bought a new shower curtain years ago, but they’re too goddamn expensive. every single time i go to the store with the intention of purchasing a new shower curtain, the following internal conversation occurs:

“all these shower curtains are hideous.”

“well, i guess this one isn’t too bad…”

“$19.99? are you fucking kidding me?”

screw that.” [leaves store sans shower curtain]

at which point i unearth the magic eraser and call it good. i recently found a purple zebra shower curtain at big lots for $4, and thought i had hit the jackpot.

but today was a game changer. all the dorm room crap at target was loaded onto the endcaps at target for 75% off. including and especially, a huge pile of cute vinyl shower curtains for $2.12 each. i bought 4.  at my current rate, i won’t need another shower curtain until 2023. (there were also at least 20 left over. go! go now!).

today was a good day.

* as a bonus, i also got a super cute pair of yoga pants for $3.34. i think the 75% off section of the sleepwear/fitnesswear section is often overlooked.

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acid flashback.

24 07 2011

i am a child of the 80s. when i was born, video stores didn’t exist. but by the time i was 6- BAM, there they were. you could rent an atari 5200, or any one of tens of titles on VHS or betamax.  as a young child being seduced by the glory of in-home movie viewing (commercial free!), there were precious few titles available in the G ratings bracket in 1984.

also, my comprehension of the english language was still in its formative stages. so, i relied entirely on movie box pictures to make my choices. i was particularly obsessed with the movie above: angel- high school honor student by day, hollywood hooker by night.

obviously at 6, i didn’t know what a hooker was. i merely saw pretty shoes and shiny hot pants. what could possibly be inappropriate? my older sister and i would BEG repeatedly for this movie every single time we went to the video store… never fully understanding why we were being shut down. unfortunately,  being the prudent parent that she is, my mother never caved.

flash forward 25+ years later.

despite being readily available on netflix (with a 4 star recommendation based on some other hilarious movies that i’ve watched), i have never managed to view it as a consenting 17+. actually, i had forgotten about it entirely for many many years (it would fade slowly from local video stores to be replaced with “higher quality” fare usually starring eddie murphy in a fat suit). until…

LAST SATURDAY. Read the rest of this entry »





worth the trip- the black album (with a plaid b-side).

24 11 2010

i feel like it was just halloween. how exactly is it thanksgiving already? now, thanksgiving means a lot of things to me- pie, defending my vegetarianism against people who think it is a personal attack, pie, rolling my eyes at football, pie, and most of all… BLACK FRIDAY.

to many, getting up at the pre-crack of dawn in order to shiver outside in the icy icy weather in a line of other assholes who also think that this is a good idea does not seem like a privilege. i know it seems wrong on a number of levels, but i can’t stop myself. i’m not even buying any xmas presents. i’m not even trying to score big ticket items at crazy low prices. i just really love a hot bargain, and have designs on expanding my chick flick collection for less than $2 a dvd.

now traditionally, one gets the thanksgiving paper and weeds through the ads while digesting their  gravy coated food baby after dinner (sort of like half time before the pie round). but since this is the internet age, and we’re all a big fucking pack of cheaters, there are multiple websites offering up all the black friday deal fliers days before anyone has to stick their hands into a frozen turkey and pull out the “giblet sack” (and people question my vegetarianism?).

i love black-friday. net, but it really doesn’t make a fucking difference if you go there or to blackfriday.info or even blackfriday.com. the point is that i’ve been planning my black friday shopping strategy for DAYS. here is my present  ACTION PLAN: Read the rest of this entry »





worth the trip- full cosmetic takedown.

5 10 2010

so i’d never even heard of ulta before i drove by the mall a few days ago and saw that one had sprung up in the gaping void left by vinny ts (ok, maybe gaping void is a little dramatic- did ANYBODY go to that restaurant?). now generally, i would not entirely give a shit about a giant box store peddling makeup (sorry sephora, i’m just a low maintenance kind of girl), but they seduced me in with a $5 off $10 coupon in my sunday paper. i also did a little research and found out that in addition to their own lines and the high end lines they carry, they also carry all the drugstore brands, AND they take manufacturers coupons. SCORE! their flier showed a host of buy one get one 50% off deals on the drugstore brands, and i rounded up my very best coupons and headed over to see what i could do:

2 neutrogena blushes at $5.99 each with the BOGO50% sale, a $3/1 coupon (from all you) and a $2/1 coupon from this weekend’s paper= $3.99

2 NYC color nail polishes for $1.99 each with BOGO50% sale and a BOGO coupon from all you (seriously, if you don’t get all you, you’re doing yourself a profound coupon disservice)= $.99

2 cover girl eye shadows at $3.29 each with the BOGO50% sale, and 2 $1/1 coupons from the P&G brandsaver= $2.94

total= $7.92 minus the $5/$10 coupon from the paper= $2.92! i got all of the above makeup for less than $3! AND for joining their rewards club (totally free and painless to join), they gave me a sack of free goodies including a full size nail polish and eye shadow, scented body cream, and some fancy hair serum.  oh, and a 20% off coupon for next time. SUPER SCORE. also, the staff was super friendly and extremely patient with my crazy coupon ladyness. i’m hoarding this makeup for a secret project (details soon), so especially if they keep the coupon love flowing, i will definitely be going back again.

shaw’s- ok, i have never been a big fan of the “can-tastic savings” event, and this week was not particularly different. the only thing i deemed worth grabbing was the $.88 progresso soup. i had a $.50/2 coupon (doubled of course) from a coupon book i got in the mail, and considering they’re usually around $2 a piece, i thought that $.38 each was a good deal.

target sadly, all the clearanced all natural fruit roll ups & herbal essences 2 packs were already gone (who are you target shelf cleaner? reveal yourself!), but they did have a good deal on hunts diced tomatoes at $.82 a can (screw you can-tastic savings) and i had a $1/3 coupon. $.48 a can seems pretty good, especially because chili season is upon us. they also had the deluxe velveeta mac & cheese (i’m obsessed with mexi-mac) for $1.52, which is pretty much as low as i’ve seen it anywhere (including walmart). there was a good $1/2 coupon in the paper last week (i think!), so $1 a box for me at least, seemed like a score. although again, nothing amazing.

rite aid- the free crest toothpaste and nivea lip care are definitely on the top of my list, but that schick coupon they’re all talking about on the deal websites doesn’t exist up here (kind of like the revlon coupons that never show up in the maine papers). also, i’m gonna pass on the incontinence pads. otherwise, meh. decent deal on frosted flakes ($1.60 per box when you buy 5), and cottonelle 12 packs are only $3.99 after +UP (the only coupons i could find were $.50/2), which is a pretty good price for toilet paper (especially if you’ve ever paid $1 or more for a “desperation roll” at a gas station).

cvs- roughly as much excitement going on at the cvs, but there is a good $.99 revlon nailpolish deal (after ECBs- limit 6!), which would be free if you had any revlon coupons floating around. i didn’t, but i got it anyway because i didn’t want to waste the $4/$20 that the emailed me this weekend. however, the big deal to look out for is lurking in the magic coupon machine. $5 off all halloween decorations and costumes with NO MINIMUM PURCHASE! i bought a pair of striped tights and some purple hairspray for  $.99.  the big bummer was really getting the coupon (it’s a “one day only”) in a store that had kind of a minimal halloween section.

big lots- there is a 4/$10 movie deal goin on at the big lots right now on all regularly $3 movies. i couldn’t find 4 that i liked (my local store didn’t have deep blue sea as advertised- FAIL!), but i did find a copy of rocket science, which is a great movie starring portland’s very own oscar nominee, anna kendrick.  anyway, even though i didn’t buy 4 movies, it still came up as $2.50. they’ve got some decent horror, and the usual sub “straight to DVD” quality (heartbeeps anyone?), but if you like to dig through big bins of crap- there are occasionally some gems in there.





worth the trip- an inauspicious beginning.

8 09 2010

so i’ve been feeling a little (a lot) guilty for my complete lack of deal mongering lately.  the humble coupon lady roots of this blog have been lost somewhere along the way, and i don’t care for it. my original mission had been to make the coupon clipping, corner cutting lifestyle more accessible for single childless jerks like me, and i want to try to bring that element back a little bit. that said, it’s a fact:  i will never be a slick and sexy deal hunting machine. however, i do think it’s a worthwhile exercise to really take a look at the weekly deals, and make a perfectly edited list of everything that’s worth bringing home. not just what’s free or what’s cheap, but what’s actually good stuff. thus, i bring to you a new weekly feature: worth the trip.

unfortunately, as with most beta testing phases, there are a few bugs. for example, there really isn’t shit worth getting this week. i had hoped deeply that big lots might have a new shipment of $3 movies, or that target would have some sort of crazy gift card deal… but nothing. no, WORSE than nothing- BABY SALE?! or what about walmart’s pet sale (hasn’t that iams food been recalled enough?). lame.

cvs: if i were going to bother to head over to the cvs this week, i would pick up 2 packs of trident layers gum.  at $.99 each with $.99 in extrabucks back (limit 1), you can get 2 packs for free when you use this coupon. gum is good to have around, and this layers shit is pretty tasty. but seriously, that’s it this week for cvs. i’ll probably pass.

rite aid: not much better than cvs. i will be scoring on the free crest ($2.99 with $2 in +up rewards and a $1/1 coupon from last weekend’s p&g brandsaver). and if my sources (deal seeking mom) are correct, the right guard that’s on bogo (online price $3.99) will also be free after two of these printable babies. you can also get some free biotrue contact lens solution… but i don’t wear contacts and it’s not really donatable, so i’m gonna skip it.

shaw’s: again (are we sensing a pattern here?), nothing earth shattering, but a couple of decent deals on foods that i regularly eat. morningstar fake meats are all on sale for 2/$7. this is generally unremarkable (knowing that you can get them at target for $3.24 most of the time), but shaw’s does the double coupon thang, and i scored a bunch of $.50/1 coupons off a tearpad in the south portland store (don’t worry, i took almost all of them at first, but then felt guilty and threw a bunch back when no one was looking). $2.50 each still isn’t dirt cheap, but it’s about as good as it gets when it comes to morningstar. secondly, i think i’ll score a few larabars in the cart as well. you can rarely get these pricey fuckers for less than a dollar, and since they’re on sale for $.99 each, you can get 3 for $.50/ea. with this doubled coupon.

and that’s IT. not very exciting (or timely at this point), but it is my hope that with less of a vacation hangover and a more proactive spirit, i can get this going as a regular sunday feature (and get the weekend pickthrough back to friday where it belongs).  hopefully, the shopping universe will also give me something a little sexier to report than just free gum. now, i’m fully capable of missing things (or generally not paying attention), so if you see something awesome that i missed, please let me know. i want to know what you’re buying!!! (so i can get to the store first and clean them out).





spending too little on too much.

14 06 2010

it was a spendy-ass sunday. took a little jaunt back to my hometown of augusta for brunch at the senator inn (a childhood fav that still holds up!), and a little light antiquing that turned into an entire day of shopping the town inside out. i got some pretty good deals that seemed necessary at the time… but seeing it all lined up at the end of the day (and added up), i start to wonder how much of my bargain shopping is really a bargain. i’m paying less for everything, but i’m buying more than ever.

shaw’s: 4 big G cereals @ $12.86 with $6 off when you buy 4 plus $4.40 worth of coupons ($.55/1 doubled from coupons.com) final cost= $2.46 for 4 boxes.

target: the liberty of london collection is on super sale at the augusta target and i snagged an adorable nightie for $8.98. there’s also a ton of zac posen stuff, but it’s not marked down enough for me to bother. give it another few weeks… i might have to go back to augusta and snag me a cocktail dress. i also found a mysteriously unblemished pair of striped espadrilles for $4.26 marked “AS IS”. their identical counterparts were just feet away in the full retail section for $16.99… maybe they’re going to explode in low speed collisions? i’ll keep you apprised if any defects should arise. lastly, i found a few boxes of puffs tissues with vicks vapo-rub in them (which i love but haven’t been able to find ANYWHERE- discontinued?) for $1.38 a box, and sacrificed 2 of my $.50/1 vocalpoint coupons. target total= an eerie $15.00 even.

big lots: to my credit, i did put back one movie and a $6 box of diet granola bars. but a $3 copy of funny face?! i have a list of movies on my iphone that i’m looking to buy. the problem being, that my price point for DVD buying is $5 of less, usually less. today i encountered 3 of those titles in the $3 bin. is there really anything else at big lots that’s even worth looking at? funny face, art school confidential, & confetti= $9.00.

goodwill: i used to own and love this jacket in another size that i am not officially too fat to wear. lo and behold, here it is at goodwill in brunswick for $4.99! oh wait, is that a yellow barb? make that $2.49!

cvs: i had $14 worth of extrabucks expiring tomorrow, and this evening was my only chance to cash in.  with the gillette proglide razors already sold out, i had to improvise a bit and use a few more extrabucks than i otherwise would have preferred. i ended up with a bunch or random crap (most of which will get donated), but it felt like a good haul considering the circumstances:

2 john frieda root awakening shampoos @$5 each with $3 ECB back when you buy $10 + $5/2 coupon= $2
2 right guard total defense deodorants $4.49/ea. on BOGO + $3/2 coupon from coupons.com= $1.50
1 covergirl wetslicks amaze-mint @ $4.99 with $3 ECB back, and $1/1 coupon= $.99
1 colgate proclinical toothpaste @ $3.99 with $2 back in ECB, and a $1/1 coupon= $.99
2 gillette bodywash @ $8 with $8 back in ECB and a $4/2 coupon= +$4 ECBs (the flier said limit 1, but it turned out to be limit 2!)
total OOP= $17.47 (paid $17 in ECBs + .$.47 in cash plus tax), received $16 ECBs

total spent this weekend (for all above pictured goods, not actually counting meals, groceries for the week, and a ridiculous failed dinner party that will never speak of again)= $29.42 of stuff that i didn’t actually need. on one hand, i could have spent a whole lot more on a multi-store shopping binge, and gotten a whole lot less. on the other hand, is spending $30 on anything that i don’t need really a bargain? it might be time to put the debit card away for a while and think about what i’ve done.