Saturday, March 6, 2010

spend to save? stupid tax

Can you relate to this comic? ('re saving for the gutters--inside joke) When is it profitable to spend just to save money? I have a friend who told me she would buy things on sale that she didn't need because she felt that she was saving money anyway. Hmmmmm?? Obviously, we all need to bargain shop and NEVER PAY RETAIL, but as our cartoon lady shows us, buying $79 sale shoes instead of $325.00 retail shoes is NOT a way to save money--not if you don't need the shoes.  What about buying a high priced item just to get an added freebie?

Case in point: Abby lost her TI 84 graphing calculator that I spent $100.00 on. If she doesn't find it, I need to buy a new one. (I did find two TI 85s at a yard sale last year for a buck sweet...but the boys need them for their math. Right now, Abby is sharing, but she'll need one for college.) So, I'm looking around for the best price. I find it at Staples for $119.00 and at another site for $89.00. But I have a coupon to get a free MP4 player at Staples with a $100.00 purchase. Best deal? Guess it depends on whether or not I really need an MP4 player...or if I could find one for less than $30.00.

Mike and I went out to eat last night at Mama Mias (love that place...right now if you order online you get 15% off!) and I stuck to my 1000 calories. I only ate a few bites of bread, salad with very little dressing and half my entree...and I didn't eat a lot during the day. I do add a little to Amy's 1000 calorie a day diet; I allow myself unlimited no cal drinks and low cal veggies like lettuce, greens, cukes, onions and peppers. Anyhwho...after we ate.....

Stupid Tax:......I wanted to rent Under the Tuscan Sun, (I love Frances Mayes' writing, but I didn't like the movie). We went to Family Video and it was reported as lost so we drove to Blockbuster. (I know I should have rented it at the library...but it was closed) We stepped up to the desk and the associate says, "Have you heard about our new rental fees?" I say"no" while simultaneously thinking that this would be a good thing...maybe coming more in line with Family Video. He says,"All our videos are $5 for 5 nights." I counter, "I can't get it for 1 night/$1?" "No, Ma'am" My husband says, "That's no deal!" Associate shrugs and says nothing. I don't know what bozo came up with this markting strategy in a video world where you can rent nearly anywhere for a buck, but that will be the last Blockbuster video I rent unless they lower their prices.

I'm addin a link on the blog to some other great sites out there. You really-no matter where you live-need to check out southern Jenny does the best job at compiling weekly deals, esp. at CVS, Rite-Aid and Walgreens. I don't want to reinvent the wheel...check her out. One thing that really bugs me: the sites that charge you money won't link to sites like southernsavers that don't charge you. Crazy...I mean, I know they're trying to make money and all, but we're all in this together!!

Here's a couple of freebies: Free Arm and Hammer shaker (baking soda is one of my favorite cleaning products, so this will get used at my house):

Free Christmas stocking (I'm thinking ahead to Operation Christmas Child)

Money out this week: $125.00. Weekly average: $98.00
 Meals this week: beef stoganoff, BLTS, spaghetti, homemade pizza, chicken and veggies.

Happy Savings!


  1. Oooo! Beef Stroganoff! That's what I could do with that beef in the freezer!

    We're having tacos, chicken pasta casserole (which we call "that chicken thing"), rice and beans and, by tradition, breakfast for dinner on Thursday. Friday was a total blank until I read your post. Thanks!

    Oh, and I have to say that the library is THE place to get videos if you're having an on-the-spot craving, but not if it's outside their ever-diminishing hours of operation. We have Netflix, which more than makes up for that problem by allowing us to watch movies online. We don't rent movies locally anymore at all.

  2. I have a free 2-week trial with Netflix right now and have used them in the past was great when we were rural. Right now, we don't watch enough movies to even justify the monthly fee...and we have about 6 Redboxes within a 5 mile radius...and Family Video has 2 movies for a buck. But mostly, I like the library. I also pick movies up at yardsales for a buck or less to add to our "camp collection." Oh...and what type beans/seasoning do you use in your beans/rice??

  3. I don't know what Abby is planning to study in college, but I never needed a graphing calculator after high school. I'm actually a person who sold my last year at a yard sale to some lucky person. Just something to consider....

  4. The beans are standard red beans. No seasoning. The rice is a form of Brazilian rice, and is made with onion, garlic, a little butter (to sautée the above) and salt. I add salsa verde to it because I like the kick, but most of the rest of the house eats it as is. We serve it with tomato and sometimes a fried egg (this was very popular when I lived in Brazil), as well as salad.

    We have a Movie Gallery here, but no other rental options that are worth taking advantage of. There was a local business that had a great selection, but they closed so we went to Netflix. It's worth it to me solely for the online stuff. I use it a LOT during the winter.

  5. TI-85 on e-bay typically under $20 (remember to check feedback, cost of shipping, and pay via paypal so you have buyer protection)

    If you are still leary of e-bay, amazon has used TI-85's for $25.

    Don't plan on a calculator for college, more likely a notebook computer.

    The cartoon (and inside joke) really hits home. I call it "insert name of wife" math. We can take the cartoon a step further, If the shoes are $37 + tax, just round down and call them $30 dollar shoes. I could go broke saving that kind of money.

    Check out for movies. You can search and find a redbox near you (bunch in our area) for the title you are looking for. Plus, sign up and get a free rental! I left blockbuster long ago... time to go short their stock.

    -Bill not Stephanie