Hallmark Channel's Countdown to Christmas

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Tis the Season

Ahem.  How is everyone?  I apologize for the lack of posts lately, but I've had a cold all week.  Amazing how much a little cold can slow you down!

Today is, unfortunately, the last day of B1G1 free holiday drinks at Starbucks.  This goes from 2-5 pm today.  I had an eggnog creme frappucino the other day--very good!

I ran a few quick errands this week, mainly for toilet paper.  Such an exciting life I lead, I tell you.  Beyond that, I read a lot of magazines in bed and watched the leaves seem to change color overnight.

They've also put up the tree at the mall.  Sorry that I cut off the top.  I got a shopping day in on Tuesday as I took a day off work.  And then I woke up with a sore throat Wednesday morning. :(  At least I should be better for Thanksgiving!

Speaking of Thanksgiving, you know all the super cheap and/or free food you are getting right now with your coupons?  Buy a few extras.  Donate them to the Food Bank or another cause.  Please and thank you!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Ultimate Christmas Countdown Checklist | Real Simple

(Photo from Real Simple)

Here's a little something to help with your holiday planning.  The turkey is bought for Thanksgiving, the wrapping paper and Christmas cards are bought, and Christmas gift shopping is 40% done. It's nice to have some things checked off my list!

I have shopped like a maniac this weekend.  I was off Friday so spent the day shopping with my parents and sister.  Jimmy was at work, because, well, someone's got to pay the bills! ;)  Okay, and a day of shopping would be like a day of torture to him.  I haven't been able to get him to do it since we've been married.  Dang!

Yesterday was shopping, a 1st birthday party, and more shopping.  I have made index cards with everyone's names on them and have what I've bought or am going to buy for their stocking on the front, and the same thing with the actual gifts on the back.  That helps me remember what all I have so one person doesn't end up with 20 items.  Or with 2 of the same items.  Ahem.  I just knew that I had bought one thing for my mom, but could not find it.  I remembered thinking at the time what a great deal I had gotten.  So I bought another for an equally good deal, got home to put it in the Christmas stocking bag and found the original.  It's nothing that two can't be used, it was just good to validate that I am not dreaming up things I've bought!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Beautiful Day for Christmas Shopping!

It was a gorgeous day today!  This was thankfully was not on the bridge that got stuck.  After work today my sister and I went Christmas shopping.  We scored some great deals, most of which can't be discussed, but I can say that if you go to the mall, there are deals to be had!

Have you checked out the Black Friday ads yet?  Well, the ones that are out, that is.  It's going to be an early day for me this year!  Target is opening an hour earlier than last year, at 4 am.  Am I one of those crazy people who gets up at the crack of dawn?  Yep!  I can barely sleep Thanksgiving night out of excitement, so I'm usually up without the alarm clock.  I know, I probably need a therapist, but I do love the hustle and bustle and great deals! :-)

Also keep an eye out in some December magazines for Hallmark coupons.  These are $5 off a $5 or more purchase, including sales deals.  I'm sure there are exclusions, but I used that coupon too fast to even read it!  Well, my sister used it and got two rolls of Christmas wrapping paper for $1.48 total.  The wrapping paper is Buy 1 (4.99) Get 1 for .99 cents.

I also stopped in Bath & Body Works and now my house smells like Evergreen.  Mmmmmm.  Love the smell of Christmas!  How cute is this Wallflower?

My sister ordered my doggies super-cute Christmas bandanas.  You can go comment on her post to try to win one! :)  Here is my parents' dog Chloe modeling hers:

So when we take our Christmas picture the dogs are going to be wearing theirs.  Too cute!  Yes, our dogs will be in our Christmas picture.  We have no children.  Don't judge. ;)  And apparently after Christmas last year when I bought the clearanced cards, I felt like we should do picture cards this year.  I didn't quite think through all the everything involved on that one.

In other news, Rite Aid is having some great sales this week!  I bought a few things this week and only spent $4 out of pocket.  I saved $30.  I'm telling you, watching those Video Values ads are the way to go.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Day I Survived Wal-Mart Twice

If you've been reading my blog for more than 2 seconds, you know that I loathe going to Wal-Mart.  I will go once a year, though, usually if it's something for Christmas (but NEVER on Black Friday).  Holy teryaki, we went one year on 4th of July and that was bad enough.  Yesterday Wal-Mart was having an early Black Friday sale as Sears and Best Buy have also been doing.  I'd like to think this will lessen the craziness on the real BF, but I also am an eternal optimist.  According to the salesguy at Wal-Mart, they'll be having BF deals the next few Saturdays, too, until the real day.

So I got myself up at 6:40 yesterday morning, right after Jimmy had left to go golfing.  I also got up at 6:40 this morning, too, but that's because I'm a ding-dong and didn't adjust my clock.  Regardless, the sale started at 8 am, so I got there at 7:15 am and was about the 16th person in line.  I occupied the time by texting my mom and people watching.  There was an organized line, and the salesguy came around to ask what you wanted to get so he could keep a running inventory to let the people at the back of the line know if all of the items they were there for had been claimed yet.

Around 8:07 someone realized they were supposed to start the sale.  It moved really slow at this point.  30 minutes later it was my turn!  I can't tell you what I got because something I got is a Christmas present for my sister who would still read this post even if I told her not to... :)  Anyway, up at the register, which was not working right and kept requiring the manager's key (sigh), the register wasn't even recognizing the items that I was buying.  They made a list of all of our names and told us they'd call us to come back later to pay for and pick up the items.  In the meantime Jimmy and I went up to Colonial Downs for a horse race.  More on that in a minute.

I came home to a message so went again at 4 pm.  Ugh.  Of course the shift had changed and no one knew what I was talking about.  It was crowded and noisy, and ugh.  20 minutes later I had my BF purchase in hand.  A very good deal, for sure, but hopefully by next Saturday they'll have all the kinks worked out for everyone.  The sales listings for next Saturday should be on Walmart.com towards the end of this week.

Jimmy and I determined yesterday we are not horse race people.  I had bought a Groupon a few months ago to Colonial Downs.  Last Christmas we'd gone behind the scenes at Churchill Downs, so I thought it would be neat to see an actual horse race.  We were seated right by a window, so had a good view, not to mention there was a little flat screen tv at our table.  As part of the Groupon, we were each given $2 bets.  Now, let me mention we're not betting people.  The statistics next to each of the horses info in the book?  Might as well be Greek.  Jimmy doesn't want to deal with placing a bet, so gives me his $2 bet.  Soooooo... I pick the horse with the name I like the best.  Needless to say, in the race he was in, he and only one other horse (out of about 10, mind you), were the only ones who had never won a race.  Whoops.  Though, I do like to root for the underdog!  Who did I choose?  Tidewater Pretty Boy.  Highway, our dog, is a pretty boy.  We actually call him Snow White, but Pretty Boy is close.  Love him to death, but he's so much prissier than our female dog.  Except when it comes to rap music.  He loves him some Snoop Dogg.  We had a music channel on one day and Snoop Dogg came on.  Highway went crazy and barked through the whole thing and ran around excited.  Not sure what that's all about, but it was funny.

Back to the races, though, here are a few pictures of our day.  By the way, we left after the 5th betting race.  There were 14 races slated, and we'd already been there for 4 hours total (including the non-betting races).  Maybe had we made money on Pretty Boy, I might have been more interested, but there was too much of a time lag between the races.  Regardless, it was fun.  It was definitely something different to do on a Saturday than sit home and watch tv.

Oh, did I even need to mention Pretty Boy didn't win?  He was doing good until the last turn and then he fell way back and came in 6th.  Oh well.

Here are some pictures of our day at the races.

And a 3-D poodle sweater to round out the day. :)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Living at Target

I'm very embarrassed to tell you how many times I've been to Target this week.  FIVE!  I'm even more embarrassed to tell you I still need to go back tomorrow because I couldn't use all my Target coupons in one transaction.

I got some Halloween plates and cups for next year, a bag of candy, then I've bought various grocery items and clearance items.  I haven't taken a picture of everything, because, well, my husband might see it.  Haha, j/k!

Christmas shopping is coming along well.  I still have only stocking stuffers for my dad, but everyone else is at least 50% done.  How is it coming for you?