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Home > Archive: April, 2007

Archive for April, 2007

Celestial Haines and my mail

April 30th, 2007 at 07:36 pm

Ages ago I wrote to this company and complemented one of their foods. It was a few months ago. Today from their US office they sent me a real letter (snail mail) with coupons good in Canada and thanking me for being a customer.

Not huge coupon but 3 50c off any product they make coupons.. a short email saves me $1.50.

Nice! Other than their being a bit slow to respond they've made me feel like a loved customer.

This good mail was accompanied by
Travis Tritt tickets (twang twang, twiddle twang) that I had ordered and my visa bill.

Definitely a mail day of mixed blessings

An Excellent Sunday!

April 29th, 2007 at 09:18 pm

A friend called me up this morning before 9am. Not surprisingly he actually woke me up! He offered to buy me breakfast as he arrived in town today for work meetings Monday and Tuesday! As I very much enjoy his company I got up and picked him at the airport here and took him up on his offer! We enjoyed a great breakfast of steak and eggs. Yummy...

We both enjoy flea markets so we went out to local, fairly large, flea market called Dr Fleas (yes i feel itchy just thinking about the name). We enjoyed a good walk around. I kept pointing out really gaudy stuff and saying I think he'd really like it for his place - Yeah I was being a brat! He bought a belt for himself and I just enjoyed myself.

Then we headed back here for a cup of tea and some chat! I asked him about where he was staying and then asked (in my subtle way) about if they had a pool and whirlpool and if he brought his swim suit. He had, so I invited myself back to the hotel for a swim and hot-tub (he was quite amenable to this!)

We headed to his hotel where he stays frequently enough that it seems all the staff know him by name and he's on the concierge floor. I didn't know this but they offer light food as part of this "special" service for their good customers. So we snacked on some chicken, cheese and delicious cole slaw before heading to the pool and hot tub.

We spend a couple of hours alternatively swimming and hot tubbing (is that a verb?) before heading back to the "important people lounge" and enjoying a cuppa tea, cookies, chocolate mouse and custard flan. I could get used to that kind of a day.

My cost was $6 for the parking at the hotel!

This was one excellent day!

Coupons at the Beer Store

April 28th, 2007 at 06:10 pm

Anyone who knows me knows I like coupons - and often use them! But sometimes marketing geniuses at large corporations absolutely floor me with their sophisticated marketing plans surrounding coupons

Went into the beer store today to return wine, cooler and beer bottles. Made about $6.50 - proving I'm a lush and/or haven't been there in a while.

A few months back I found Swanson Hungry man coupons at the beer store. Your average beer drinker I would guess would be male and likely not too into coupons. Can you find me a dozen men into voluntarily using coupons please.. oh never mind.. can you think of two men who will use them without prompting?. I didn't get that campaign, but then again I'm not a marketing genius for a major corporation.

Today, I found Degree coupons at the beer store for their *suprise* manly deodorant (with 1 million molecules of protection .. make sure you count the molecules as you swipe it on those hairy pits...).

This was slightly more bemusing than the older fellow in front of me who was getting what I think was a 2-4 of Wee Willy Beer ("Waitress - I'd love a Wee Willy") I really do think that was the name of it ..

Anyways, I was looking at the customers at the beer store. Other than the Wee Willy guy there was another one looking like he was wearing electric blue Hawaiian pyjamas that were cropped off at the knee... he really didn't look like the grab a coupon type...

Oh yeah, they are worth 75 cents off Degree Men and expire Dec 31st.

Wasted Food

April 27th, 2007 at 04:16 pm

I hate wasting food but when I defrosted the chicken it had a odor even after rinsing it. It was a big package of chicken thighs (skinless boneless). I tossed them. $7.56 wasted.. but better wasted than me having self induced stomach flu!

Addicted to Ocean Express

April 27th, 2007 at 03:28 pm

My name is yummy and I'm addicted to Ocean Express. I love this game. Started playing it on the pogo free site but its on yahoo games and a ton of other sites.

Its like reverse tetris in a way. Pattern matching which this really is, is soothing in some strange way.

I am so liking it I'm almost tempted to buy it. I did the download and did the hour of free play. That hour went by really quickly (reminded me of recess at school).

I think the game costs about $20 US. I'm so tempted but with exchange and taxes... blech...

A quiet day

April 27th, 2007 at 03:25 pm

I love quiet days! I stayed home from work today.Technically I worked from home. I didn't do too much I have to admit - at least work wise.

Been working on my spare room. Finally I am really seeing progress. Before pictures have been taken but they aren't going anywhere until I have some after pictures. I was hoping the end of April. This has been revised until the end of May, LMAO.

A no spend day! Woo hoo!

I'm a happy geek

April 26th, 2007 at 09:17 pm

Why? Well cause I've been dealing with the gawd awful calculator at work with a weak solar cell - my additions would fade out on me.

And today I got me a brand new calculator! The order finally came in!

And yes I do use excel.. but sometimes you just want to add numbers and both excel and the microsoft online calculator suck when all you want to do is a quick calculation!

Oh yeah and I'm "working" from home tomorrow. Woo hoo.. a sorta long weekend!!

Good Mail Day

April 26th, 2007 at 07:18 pm

It was a really good mail day today! No bills, a sample from Head and Shoulders, a free magazine from Homebasics including coupons and samples and coupons from Garnier.

Donations donated

April 25th, 2007 at 09:07 pm

On Monday, after a few weeks of carrying around in the car trunk the donations I had for the local drop-in centre and food-bank I was able to get there at a time that was open.

They were very appreciative and treated me very nicely with a couple of people coming and and helping me get the items out of the car.

I'm definitely going to see what I can give them again in a few months. I love saving but I never want to become miserly. There is something about giving that is good for the soul; and I felt that goodness on Monday.

Could you have made the meeting longer?

April 25th, 2007 at 06:15 pm

Seriously, could they have made the meeting longer? The meeting started at 11am. We had a quick break (10 minutes) for lunch and then the meeting ran til 7:30 tonight. Oh and I had one 1/2 hour meeting before that at 10am.

I bought a bagel, donut and a decaf coffee on the way home from work. I'm wiped. The good news is I should only have 2 meetings tomorrow - each about one hour in length.

Dear Telemarketer

April 24th, 2007 at 06:02 pm

First of all can you please hire people who are not so accented I can't understand them. And understand, I'm first generation Canadian. Both my parents have accents. People who do telephone work need to be able to be understood over the phone.

Second, if you tell me I have your long distance service and I don't (I have DSL with you); you instantly lose credibility. Please give your telemarkers correct information or teach them how to read.

Thirdly, you've been calling me monthly for months. Get the hint. I will likely get your phone service one day but I'd like to speak to an experienced, long time, employee of your company and not someone from that call centre who was hired Monday and doesn't know the difference between DSL and long distance service.

Pine Sol Response

April 23rd, 2007 at 04:09 pm

Ages ago I mentioned I was writing to pine sol to mention my problem with scents. Their answer was basically "they can't suggest anything because all products have some scents and everyone is different, thanks for writing"

You are so welcome pine sol folks. Your answer was oh so helpful.

Looked after me today

April 23rd, 2007 at 04:07 pm

Went for my physical today. I'm overweight but thanks to my pear shape I'm in better shape that I would be if I was an apple shape. I think this is the first time in my life having a huge butt, hips and thighs has been a good thing....

Of course I ended up with a PAP test - but better a bit of indignity than having to deal with the great big C down the road (ladies reading this please get a pap test if you haven't had one in the last year).

I'm being sent for one referral and for a mammogram and a bone scan. Fun.. fun.. fun...

Beware the Free Ticket

April 23rd, 2007 at 05:11 am

A friend gave me a free ticket to the Creative Sewing and Needlework festival. I went on Saturday morning and had a blast looking around.

Priced the sewing machine of my dreams. New it is about $3500. YIKES. I was good girl and didn't buy it though I have to tell you all I really really really want it.

I went there with no intention of buying. Honestly! But that wasn't to be. Some jewelery called my name, as did this gorgeous ball of hand dyed mohair in shades of pink and purple. I found some discontinued laurel burch fabric on sale as well as an adorable pattern for a small quilted purse.

So beware the free ticket. It can end up costing you.

How to save money and still buy those things you want

April 21st, 2007 at 02:50 pm

One of the easiest ways I have found to save money is to implement the 24 hour rule on unplanned purchases that you "have" to have. This rule doesn't say you can't have them, but it says you have to wait until the next day to purchase the item.

I'm always amazed at how that stuff I had to have today, I've forgotten about by tomorrow, or realised I can easily live without. Or is just too much bother to go and get.

I love this rule because I don't feel deprived and because it stops a lot of impulse purchases. The stuff I go back for I usually end up loving and using to death.

The other nice thing about this is that you don't feel deprived of anything. It doesn't say you can't have something! You can have whatever you want that you are willing to go back for the next day.

Scented Pits

April 21st, 2007 at 04:15 am

Anyone here have armpits that really care about the scent of your deoderant? I mean really!

Has anyone said to you "ooh that smells like you are wearing the new meadow breeze scent and that is so much nicer than that old spring breeze scent you wore. I never told you but that old scent was disgusting - kinda like a meadow that had just been fertalized".

Like really? You want to smell whafts of scent from your pits all day?

Personally I'm old fashioned and happiest when I can't smell my pits. If I want to wear perfume I'm not looking for Degree, Speedstick, Secret or Arrid to be my signature scent.

(this rant brought to you by an offhand comment someone made to me about how different companies are always changing the scents of their deoderants -which is why we can often get freebies or really good deals on clearnance)

Free lunch and throwing things

April 19th, 2007 at 04:44 pm

Another day.. another dollar.. a few more grey hairs and a few more frazzled nerves (can you relate?).

My boss took me out for lunch and we had a couple of beers each - a coworker joined us for the beers part and our boss picked up the tab. I so wasn't expecting him too a super nice surprise!

Got back to work and found out that everything I had done for the last few days (mega OT involved) was wrong. One of my coworkers found this incredibly amusing. I didn't. This wasn't a slight chuckle he was having but an all out belly laugh that included some stomping of his feet.I threw some pencils and pens at him and he kept laughing anyways. Blech..

I didn't do any damage and it was all in the spirit of good fun (I'm a lousy shot at the best of times). We went through the new data and found while different the way we did our analysis it only made a small difference - so crisis averted. Thank goodness

I left work a lot earlier than usual but a bit later than I hoped to as the coworker who had the laughing fit had questions for me.

Yes I work in a nuthouse and I'm one of the inmates...

Gender Bender

April 18th, 2007 at 07:33 pm

Not really money related.. but amusing..

Every once in a while an email at work will make me shake my head.

We got one today that said that there was this situation where this individual had an illness (something to do with the prostrate), needed surgery, and then required Viagra; in order to ensure a proper recovery. Okay, whatever.

The email made an offhand comment that the claimant could be our grandmother.

I sometimes get really really scared at work.

Walmart and Price Matching

April 17th, 2007 at 05:45 pm

What is it with Walmart that they can't get enough cashiers? They used to be great but more and more you go there and most of the cash registers are closed and you get to stand there in a line up to pay.

Then when you price match you have to get into a long discussion with the girl that "no the ketchup you are price matching is not the item that was on a two day sale that is now over.." but an item that is on sale until Friday.

Add to that the store was really warm so I felt like I was having a hot flash. I wasn't - the store was just really warm and really crowded and my temper and frustration levels may have been slightly raised.

On a good note - the Ziploc big bags I bought had a $1 off coupon on each of them and I found a coupon in the store for an item that the man in front of me was buying - so I gave it to him (I had lots of time to be nosy and look at what others were buying)

Parking Pass update

April 17th, 2007 at 09:59 am

I have my parking pass for work on this D ring (Carboneer?) that is large and easy to find in the car. i also have a parking pass for home that is this white card with a hole in the top. I've lost that parking pass recently and had to have it replaced - a white card is so easy
for me to lose (and I found the old one after I had it replaced in the back seat under some clutter).

So today I realised I could put the pass for home on the same ring as the pass for work. A small thing but it will likely save me from 5 minutes of searching several times a week!

I'm now contemplating putting the old card in an envelope and writing a note to ask my management office if I get the $10 back for it?

Monday was a good mail day

April 17th, 2007 at 04:28 am

Monday was a very good mail day! I got a small coupon train with at least one coupon I can use, and a cheque from Pinecone! I love pinecone - seem to get survey's pretty regularily and sometimes even products to evaluate!

Dear Financial Advisory Office Down the Street:

April 16th, 2007 at 12:01 pm

To Whom it may concern:

I'd have more confidence in your ability to provide up to date Financial advice if you updated the poster in the window to provide statistics to the end of 2006. Showing me stats from 2000 to 2005 do nothng to inspire confidence in your services and ability to provide up to date advice


An amused passer by.

Tried to get a new debit card

April 16th, 2007 at 11:57 am

My debit card is dying through overuse. I was in the branch today to take money out of the machine and attempted to get a new bank card.

Well I just learnt you need picture ID to do that and I happened not to have picture ID on me. The card worked in the machine but one day I'm going to be sadly without money as the card isn't going to last much longer!

frugal vs non frugal

April 15th, 2007 at 08:32 am

Frugal: Buying a bottle of wine at the resort because you can keep it over the weekend and finish it the next night at dinner - you save buy buying it by the bottle and not by the glass

Not Frugal: Drinking it all that night anyways because you are having such a good time!

It is a very drinkable and "light" chardonnay - not exceptional but tasty. I always enjoy this. I think it is about a 1 so not overly dry.

Paying with Debit not Credit

April 14th, 2007 at 06:57 pm

I'm very proud of myself - I'm on a weekend away.


We are doing a girls getaway weekend. There are about 15 of us and we are staying in two of the "cottages" right on the lake.

Why am I proud? Well the weekend was paid for before I came up here - and since I've been up here I've payed for all incidentals (wine, a massage and a body polish) either with cash or debit!

Leading another down the path of frugality

April 12th, 2007 at 09:20 pm

One of my coworkers came and thanked me today. I often share freebees with them, as well as coupons and other deals. And I talk about the deals and things I am able to find. But this was one of the first times one of them "got it"

Seems she got an odd charge on her phone/internet bill. She called and and eventually without much trouble she had them remove that charge. Then she called the satellite service affiliated with them. Swapped some channels she wanted for others she didn't watch. Then a casual question or to about a price increase and some service issues. Voila they were able offer her a one time credit of $20ish.

She thanked me cause without my talking about some of the stuff I've done she'd have never thought to do this.

Oh and she also has some coupons for me! I'm so proud of her!

Are you working on leading someone new into the land of frugality? Idea? Problems? What works?

Out of the Employee directory

April 12th, 2007 at 05:48 pm

I managed to get upgraded to having phone with call display - this is a big deal in a large company. Puts me now up to date with technology 10 years behind the times.

So, in response to that somehow I got removed from the employee directory. My boss knows nothing of it. I told him (it was a incredibly busy stressful day) that if I was being fired I'd be very happy to leave my work undone on my desk and leave. He wasn't going for that...

Dang, it was one of those days where it didn't look like too bad of an idea...

We Will Rock You

April 11th, 2007 at 11:32 pm

Went to see we will rock you tonight that the Canon theatre. This was part of full evening that included a buffet style dinner and cocktail hour at the Savoy Restaurant, We had row B ticket centre stage in the orchestra (about 10 rows back). The show was AMAZING. I liked the chemistry and the interactions. Tons of laughing and tons of good music!

After we went back over to the Savoy for an after show drink and more mingling. This was a work related event so had to behave but was great meeting some old coworkers and connecting with some people I'd talked to but never met!

If you can get to see this show it is so worth it

Oh as this is a frugal blog I should mention the entire night was free! Free everything including a CD as a souvenir!

Pine Solve it

April 10th, 2007 at 10:43 pm

Wrote to pinesol today to tell them I can't use their product anymore. And I can't. the product which I had used for years gives me a major migraine when I use it now.

I'll be interested to see if they have any suggestions. This time I made sure to take a copy of what I wrote.

I'm not doing this to try to get free stuff or even coupons. I'm trying to understand more about the products I use, give feedback and see if the companies really do walk the customer service walk or if the stop at the talk..

Some quick shopping

April 10th, 2007 at 06:45 pm

Stopped at a store I quite often shop for clothes at. Well tried to - it had changed names but was basically the same store (same owner, different brand, but mostly the same clothes). Found the top I wanted from the non existent store at this store (same brand and size as one I have but a different colour). Tried on a bunch of stuff and ended up getting another top I should end up getting a lot of wear from too.

Got to the cash and found that they had a buy 1 item get the second 40% off sale - so while i spent more than I planned it wasn't quite as bad as I thought it would be!

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