Friday, November 30, 2012

OC Marketplace OOTD backdate 10/01/12


I am extremely upset that blogger deleted a huge chunk of my posts. Luckily my tech savvy hubby found a way to retrieve some of them and they are as it was written originally (see below). The following few posts will be a collection of my lost posts with today's date. Please bear with me as these posts are memory pieces for me. Thanks

Irene 



Shopping in your own closet is great way to sport a new look. As I browsed through my racks and racks of clothing I realized that I hadn't wore this piece since graduate school.  It was a hot humid day, so I lathered on my sunscreen and topped it off with my favorite teal brimmed hat. My girlfriend and I had planned to browse the Orange County Marketplace (with my free admission tickets) so I kept it simple with my trusty rainbows.  
     

Pink & Black Dress: $15 Forever 21, New York NY
Sun Necklace: $4 Women Helping Women, Santa Ana, CA
Rainbows (not shown):$40 range Rainbow Factory, San Clemente, CA
Teal brimmed hat: $10, Princess Cruise Line, Long Beach, CA
 
 
However, before we embarked on our treasure hunt we decided to fuel up at Freebirds World Burrito. Check out my review here.  Helen had a B1G1 Free coupon, so we were all over it and mm... the burritos were yum yum.  
 
She stated that she got the coupon from the Sunday paper and that she only paid 2 cents for the year subscription. Craziness! Click here for the link if you also want the OC Register Sunday paper for 2 cents!I just mailed my request yesterday *crosses fingers* so hopefully I'll be able to dig out some awesome coupons too!
 
I love my friends :) 
 
 
Do you have tips to recommend for a fun frugal weekend?  
 
 
 
Yours Truly,
 
Irene


$6.88 Oscar De La Renta Scarf & Groupon Date backdate 101712


I am extremely upset that blogger deleted a huge chunk of my posts. Luckily my tech savvy hubby found a way to retrieve some of them and they are as it was written originally (see below). The following few posts will be a collection of my lost posts with today's date. Please bear with me as these posts are memory pieces for me. Thanks

Irene 



Alex and I love to eat and try new things, but with bills and student debt growing ever so quickly we feel guilty to indulge in our tummy's incessant craving. So, like many of your readers purchased a few Groupons for us to experiment a few restaurants with the discount incentive.  We decided to hang around Orange for the afternoon and enjoy the Huntington Beach nightlife. But I'm sure you're all really here because of my latest find- the gorgeous Oscar De La Renta scarf. Patience my pet, just continue reading and you'll find out where I scored this gem :)



FOOD EXPERIENCE

We began our day at a little deli called Orange Tree Deli just a few blocks away from my alma mater- Chapman University. With an average of 4.5 star review on yelp we definitely knew that we had to hit up. Check out my review here.  The portions were extremely generous and tasty too! Two thumbs up! 

For dinner I made reservations through Opentable at Gyu-Kaku in Huntington Beach.  Alex loves the whole DIY BBQ thing, so purchasing this Groupon was a no brainer. I believe if you're a Groupon VIP member it's still available in the Vault. Click here to read my review.  

Overall we were very satisfied with our food choices and our wallets were too!


THRIFTY ACTIVITIES 

Between stuffing ourselves we browsed around the Orange area and stumbled up on this cute little thrift shop. It's actually one of three or four in this plaza. So if you're ready to roll up your sleeves and start digging you're definitely in for a real treat!  Click here for my review of Second Hand Boutique.  Come to think of it, I most certainly need to do a haul as I had scored some pretty amazing garments throughout the summer. So stay tuned for that youtube video!     

Another activity that both Alex and I shared together was just taking a nice stroll. We spent the day at my alma mater as it was Homecoming Weekend, but were a bit too early so the festivities had not yet started.  The campus was quiet but we still had a great time. Below is a photo of us in front of the Berlin Wall at Chapman University.      



We also enjoyed walking along the HB pier at night. Unfortunately, all the photos that I took were way too dark so I'm unable to share them with you.  It's really beautiful and romantic. So for all your love birds, skip the beach during the day and enjoy the crashing waves with you honey at night.

How do you enjoy a frugal weekend with a companion?


Yours Truly,


Irene   

Costume Party: Black Swan backdate 10/26/12


I am extremely upset that blogger deleted a huge chunk of my posts. Luckily my tech savvy hubby found a way to retrieve some of them and they are as it was written originally (see below). The following few posts will be a collection of my lost posts with today's date. Please bear with me as these posts are memory pieces for me. Thanks

Irene 



Like most little girls, I grew up dancing and prancing across the stage in fluffy tutus and soft pink slippers. Twirling round and round and leaping from stage left to right; I was a pretty pretty ballerina! Yet, ironically in my ballet debut I was featured as a seagull in our studio's production of The Little Mermaid. Not the part I had in mind, but we all have humble beginings. This year I decided to spread my wings and took on a new role- the coveted lead as The Black Swan. Though I've long retired my pointe shoes and leotards, my girlfriend from college invited me to a costume party-- the perfect excuse to relieve my glorious childhood.


The eye makeup may look intimidating but it was actually quite simple. I used Natalie Portman's Black Swan movie poster as my guide and outlined everything with a white eye liner pencil first. After I marked everything I traced it over with my black cream eye liner, popped on some black and grey eye shadow, dabbed some glitter and voila! I was ready to take center stage!     


The party was an intimate affair complete with all things Halloween. We swapped office horror stories and indulged in many sweet treats like the Bat cupcake above-- isn't it adorable?!  Tasty too! I love Halloween. It's the one time in the year where everyone can play dress-up and show-off some awesome creativity skills.  I'm not one that usually likes to buy a pre-made costume, so this was the perfect opportunity to "make it work" with items I already owned. 

What kind of costume do you plan to showcase for October?


Yours Truly,

Irene


Major Thrift Haul: backdate 11/4/12


I am extremely upset that blogger deleted a huge chunk of my posts. Luckily my tech savvy hubby found a way to retrieve some of them and they are as it was written originally (see below). The following few posts will be a collection of my lost posts with today's date. Please bear with me as these posts are memory pieces for me. Thanks

Irene 



Yay! This post is finally here! I'm so sorry to keep you all in anxious anticipation for this haul, but rest assured as you can enjoy it on youtube now! It's a long video, but I found a bunch of fabulous items with my paupers paycheck. "Like" the video and subscribe to my channel it you want to see more!


And yes you heard correctly, I scored all the items for $70!  14 to be exact, though three of the items were not featured in the video, solely because I forgot during filming. *sad face* But scroll down below to check out the pretty earrings and black tank top from The Limited.  I gifted one of the items (a sweater) so unfortunately I no longer have it with me to share with ya'll, but hopefully all the photos and video will suffice.

Traditionally I would indicate the pricing of each item; however, at this sale there was too many to number to keep track of. From off the top of my head I recall dresses ranging from $5-$10, Blazers $7, Shoes $4-$6, Belts $2, Tops $4, and absolutely nothing over $10! Craziness!  Also, I wanted to apologize for the poor photo quality.  It was late and I really wanted to wear my new goodies (since I didn't in the videos), so lighting is terrible.  Let me know which item is your favorite!


Blazer 1: Banana Republic
Blazer 2: Debbie Shuchat


Green Dress: Forever Unique
Blue Dress: Three Dots


Silver Dress: Mikael Aghal 
Black & White Dress: Maggie London


Black Top: The Limited
Tight Cream Capris: Cynthia Steff 
Looser Blue Capris: Liz Claiborne


Tan Trench Coat: Pink Tartan 


 Vintage Earrings


Cowboy Belt

If you're in the SoCal area you should definitely hit up one of Women Helping Women's quarterly sale. The next one is in January and is always hosted on a Saturday morning.  Great way to change up your wardrobe and all proceeds go towards a great cause. Win-win!


What item would you like me to style multiple ways?


Yours Truly,

Irene







Thrift Haul: Classic Pieces backdate 11/10/12


I am extremely upset that blogger deleted a huge chunk of my posts. Luckily my tech savvy hubby found a way to retrieve some of them and they are as it was written originally (see below). The following few posts will be a collection of my lost posts with today's date. Please bear with me as these posts are memory pieces for me. Thanks

Irene 



With an extra hour added to our day I thought what better way to spend it than by sharing some of my frugal finds. I scored several classic pieces throughout the past few months as proof that thrifting is not only for hipsters. Check out my video and "like" it if you want to see more Thrift Hauls in the future.


Thrifting is not only a frugal way to puchase items, but also an exciting treasure hunt. I love discovering new things and paying a fraction of the retail cost is a huge motivater. Below, I included images of my different purchases, as well as the price and location where I purchased it.

Though part of the charm in thrifting is being able to find pieces that no one else can buy, perhaps lighting may strike twice and you'll find a hidden gem there too!  Not all thrift stores are created equally so check out my yelp list on detailed accounts about many of my experiences.

Click here, for an extensive list of shops in Orange County,CA and here for Boston, MA click here. For all other cities, stay tuned for a list of my top picks!  


 
Blue Talbots Blazer: $2.50 Goodwill Marketplace, Santa Ana, CA
Express Design Studio Gold Shrug: Salvation Army, Fountain Valley, CA 



Black Wool Ann Taylor Vest: $5.50 Goodwill, Garden Grove 
White Long Sleeved Talbots Shirt: $5.00 Thrift Town, San Francisco, CA
Blue Tee with Rhinstone embelishments: $2.50 Thrift Town, San Francisco, CA

100% Wool Purple Skirt: $2.50 Goodwill, Lakeforest, CA
100% Cashmere Sweater: $4.00 Women Helping Women, Santa Ana CA




White Belt with Gold Buckle: $.50 Lutheran High Thrift Shop, Orange, CA


Which classic piece is your favorite?



Yours Truly,

Irene

Holiday OOTD: backdate11/12/12

I am extremely upset that blogger deleted a huge chunk of my posts. Luckily my tech savvy hubby found a way to retrieve some of them and they are as it was written originally (see below). The following few posts will be a collection of my lost posts with today's date. Please bear with me as these posts are memory pieces for me. Thanks

Irene 



Tis the Season to begin the holiday shopping!! And of course all bargainistas know to start early and I, for one, am ambitiously hopeing to complete my list (checking it twice!) before the end of the month. This past weekend I had the opportunity to check out a charity holiday shopping experience called A Very Haute Holiday benefitting the Junior League of Orange County with my mommy. Complete with over 80 venders and Christmas decor galore, I joyfully browsed the boutiques and partook in all the sampling madness. In essence it's like a county fair with Christmas cheer. We spotted a beautiful item that we thought would be perfect for my mother-in-law, so fingers crossed that she loves it!  
 
As for my emsemble, I wasted no time in throwing my newly purchased thrifted items from my Women Helping Women haul into an outfit and here it is! Perfect for Fall as it kept me warm and chic.


Zara Boots: $5 Women Helping Women, Santa Ana CA
The Limited black tank top: $4 Women Helping Women, Santa Ana Ca
Skinny Jeans: Forever 21, New York NY (old)
Tweet crop jacket: Forever 21, Las Vegas, NV (old)
 

 
Where do you plan to start your holiday shopping?
 
 
 
Yours Truly,
 
Irene

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Restaurant Review: Authentic Noodles at Pho 79, Westminster CA

Little Saigon in Westminster, California is home to the largest Vietnamese population outside of Vietnam which means access to a wide array of delicious Vietnamese cuisine.  Everything from banh mi (Vietnamese sandwiches) to pho (rice noodles) and everything in between all conveniently located in one area. Yet, with a wealth of small mom pop joints it's hard to distinguish which spot to check out. There are so many shops competing against one another that many of the restaurants offer a 50% off any pho bowls (dine-in only).   

   
The 50% off price tag attracts many customers and greatly appeals to a bargain hunter like myself, but when I'm craving Vietnamese noodles I without doubt will go to my child-hood favorite joint--Pho 79.  Above is a photo of my hubby's large pho bowl with meatballs.   
  

While it's not the most cost-efficient choice, the food served at Pho 79 is just extremely flavorful and completely worth the full price IMHO ($5-$9 depending on size).   But ironically I no longer order the Pho here... I get bun (image above).  The bun (vermicelli noodles) is hiding under all the wonderful proteins and veggies  *drools* Read my yelp review on all the details.  


The food here is yummy that my hubby kept sneaking some bites when I wasn't looking. lol Not all Pho restaurants all the same and Pho 79 is definitely among the best.


Do you have a favorite Vietnamese noodles restaurant?


Yours Truly,

Irene

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Splurge Alert: New iPhone5 Present

Christmas came early this year as my husband bought me this beautiful slim iPhone5. While this huge purchase seems to be an odd topic in a bargain blog, I believe this to be an investment piece to help with conserving paper, ink, and assist with my future shopping adventures. Ie. I can check in to restaurants and attain free stuff, check pricing on an item online before purchasing, or see online if there are other stores in the area that might interest me. :)  


As a foodie and one who always seems to get lost I have downloaded both Yelp and Waze as these respective programs both cater to each of my needs.


What apps would be helpful to download on my new phone?


Yours Truly,

Irene

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

$7 Oscar De La Renta Scarf OOTD & Pearls with Purpose!

I thrifted this scarf a few months ago and absolutely it! The bold colors and intricate designs makes a statement in-and-of-itself, so I thought what better way to showcase this piece than by laying it over a simple gray canvas with my hair pulled back into a messy bun.  I paired it with skinny jeans that I purchased in a Forever 21 branch in New York many years back and my perfect for Fall Zara boots that I thrifted in October.      


Oscar De La Renta Scarf: $7, Thrift Shop, Orange, CA
Grey Shirt: $5, Orange County Marketplace, Santa Ana, CA
Skinny Jeans: $20 range Forever 21, New York, NY
Genuine Pearl Earrings: $10, Pearls with Purpose, Costa Mesa (show), CA
Zara Boots: $4, Women Helping Women, Santa Ana, CA



For jewelry I decided to keep it simple and I went with grey pearls drop earrings that I recently purchased from my holiday shopping run. What I love about these earrings is not only the elevated elegance that it adds to my outfit but the mission statement of the company. Pearls with Purpose is a nonprofit organization that works with women from third world countries who hand crafted genuine pearl jewelry pieces. The revenue earned helps them get back on their feet and support their family. This company is an online business but often set up their booth at various shows (such as A Very Haute Holiday in Costa Mesa, CA back in November).  Check out their facebook page for more info. 


What statement piece will you wearing this holiday season?  


Yours Truly,


Irene 

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Shop Small Saturday

Everyone knows about Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but few know that there's another great shopping opportunity that's right in between.  Shop Small Saturday is an initiative where American Express card holders are encouraged to shop at small businesses on November 24. Additionally an added $25 statement credit incentrive would be applied to a future statement when you spend $25 or more at a participating small business. I'll let you know if this actually worked in a future post, but read here for all the details. 

So, I obviously practiced my civic duty and promoted consumerism like any good citizen. :) 
   

My husband and I decided to support a local mom-pop shop up in his neck of the woods and we had a fantastic time. The food was great and service spot on! Read my review here for all the details!

How did you spend your Shop Small Saturday?


Yours Truly,

Irene


Saturday, November 24, 2012

Thanksgiving Day Feast!

This year my husband and I decided to have our Thanksgiving dinner at Summit House in Fullerton, CA. And I have to tell you, this restaurant was perfect in every way shape and form.  Not only was it decked out in holiday decor, the view was simply amazing. The restaurant sits upon a hill and you can see all the beautiful city lights sparkling below. It was gorgeous and the food... *drools* also equally spectacular! Now I understand why the reservations slots were limited even when I RSVPed a month and a half beforehand!

Stay tuned for my updated Yelp review on our experience, but in the meanwhile you may salivate at the following images. Beginning our meal with Butternut Squash Soup...   Mmm...


I then sampled the Australian Barramundi, which was tender and mouth watering. 


Whereas my husband dug into this huge slab of prime rib. Complete with creamed corn and creamed spinach.  And yes that dish behind is his included side dish.  


We had to take our dessert to go since we were so stuffed, but below is a photo of the four that we were able to select- Creme Brulee, cake, etc. If you're interested in seeing the complete menu click here.  Btw, while Thanksgiving usually centers around an over roasted Turkey, neither Alex nor I like to eat it so we gladly appreciated the tasty entree options here.


As a bargain hunter I believe in experience that encompass the full package and this restaurant is definitely one of the few that I feel is a fantastic value. Though a $40-$50 per person price tag may scare some readers, I feel that for a special occasion this restaurant would be a solid choice that would appease any foodie and be the perfect backdrop for a romantic evening.


How did you spend your Thanksgiving?


Yours Truly,


Irene  



Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Weekend Sweets & Treats

Alex and I were on a mission to find some great professional apparel at reasonable prices this past weekend, so we started our day bright and early- 8am to be exact. Yet, while I packed our day with various department stores, discount warehouses, even swap-meets I also planned our food and drink fuel stop as well.  After all everyone's needs to eat and stay hydrated!

This post is going to focus on our bargain eating in the Costa Mesa area, specifically near the 405 and 73 intersection (for all my SoCal readers), but stay tuned for our fashion haul on the next post!



Starbucks B1G1 Free Seasonal favorites (November 15-19th, 2pm-5pm) throughout US: To kick off their holiday drinks special Starbucks offered the following options (as Starbucks described them). 

**Caramel BrulĂ©e Latte – A holiday delight, this beverage features a combination of rich caramel sauces, espresso and steamed milk and is topped with whipped cream and shimmery caramel pieces.


**Peppermint Mocha – A seasonal favorite featuring a combination of espresso with bittersweet chocolate, peppermint flavored syrup and steamed milk, topped by whipped cream and chocolate curls.
Gingerbread Latte – This ever-popular beverage blends the flavor of freshly baked gingerbread, with espresso and steamed milk, topped by whipped cream and ground nutmeg.
Alex tried the Carmel Brulee Latte and I had Peppermint Mocha, both were infused with holiday cheer, but in m opinion the Carmel Brulee was overly sweet and tasted like a liquid version of a Milky Way.  My Peppermint Mocha had just the right amount of sweet and didn't overwhelm my taste buds, so if you're in for a treat but don't love the idea of drinking candy, pick the Peppermint :) 






The Great Mex, Costa Mesa, CA: My husband loves French Fries and that he was craving Mexican so when I saw this gringo burrito joint that combined the two I thought this would be the perfect spot to fill his tummy. The California Burrito hit the right spot. Click here for my full yelp review.


French's Pastry Bakery, Costa Mesa, CA: Wagon-wheel is a must have here though they're recognized as the top wedding cake bakery from the OC Register's People Choice Award! Read my full account here. And since we purchased so many goodies from the bakery I decided to do a video taste review.

Show me some love and "like" the video or better yet subscribe to my channel to see more :) 





What's your favorite place to fuel up on a long day of shopping?






Holiday Shopping Announcements 

*SHOP SMALL 11/24: If you're an AMEX card holder be sure to register your card number and shop small on Saturday November 24th. If you spend $25 or more at any one smal business (that accepts AMEX cards) you will get $25 statement credit! Win win! Register here


*SHOP FOR A CAUSE 11/24: I love animals so when I see an opportunity to help I jump on it. Please consider this an avenue for your holiday shopping.  Here's the info...   

The Laguna Woods Cat Club Holiday Boutique 
November 24th, 9am until 2pm 
Laguna Woods Village Clubhouse 7 at 24111 Moulton Parkway. 
lagunawoodscatclub.com

This Clubhouse is non-gated,so non-residents can attend. The clubhouse is just north of El Toro road on Moulton, and there is plenty of parking and numerous vendors with clothing, jewelry, collectible and decorative items, plant arrangements and of course some pet items and clothing.  All proceeds go to fund the Cat Clubs foster and adoption program for cats abandoned in Laguna Woods. 


*SHOP ONLINE: Online shopping has exploded in the past few years as the convenience factor often lures customers to the computer. Why not save more and sign up with ebates for cash back or purchased discounted gift cards from websites like Giftcardgranny?



Yours Truly,


Irene

Thursday, November 15, 2012

$1 Personalized Ornament

My husband and I started a new holiday tradition last year where we buy a new ornament each year to commemorate a year of marriage. While in the past we purchased our ornament after Christmas as they're usually 50-75% off, I came across this awesome deal from InkGarden that allows individuals to customize ornaments for only $1 (+ 5.49 shipping). The deal is still going on if you're interested. Here's the info.  

Expires: December 17, 2012
Promotion Code: CHEER  
For a list of other promotions on their website click here. They're also selling $2 photo mugs and personalized gift tags for $2.49 if you're not into ornaments.

This year marked a major milestone for us as we celebrated our first year of marriage! We even had one of our wedding photographers, Michelle Chiu, capture this moment in a fun photoshoot in Loma Linda, CA.

                      

Isn't the image precious?  Michelle really knows how to capture the moment. Click here to see her work.


What kind of holiday traditions do you partake-in?


Yours Truly,

Irene   



Friday, November 9, 2012

Sick Day Remedies!

Brr... It's cold in here. Okay, perhaps California cold does not compare to the rest of our country, but it is the season when everyone is starting to get sick especially with the cold or flu. So I decided to compile a list of remedies (natural and store products) to help my readers prepare for those under the weather days.  And as always... these are affordable ways to relieve your symptons. So, go ahead and check out my video!



DISCLAIMER: Obviously if you are experiencing these symptoms for more than a week please consult your doctor as these suggestions are only meant for temporary relief.  But if you're in the initial stages (or are planning ahead) I hope these recommendations will help you get through it! 

Broken down into several categories of the most common symptons experienced while sick, here's my guide to getting better!


Dry Skin
Humidifier:  The air is dry and so is your skin, but for me the dryness just concentrates on my nose. To help put moisture back into the air consider a humidfier. I purchased mine from Amazon for about $30. If you're interested in the one I purchase click here. It's a small investment, but it made a huge difference.

Cough
Use topical ointments to rub on your chest and throat: I used Vicks VapoRub and it was magical. I felt like the phlegm in my chest was evaporating away and it helped me relax while in bed.  I purchased mine from Big Lots, but you can also pick these up from your local drugstore.

Sore Throat
Gargle warm water and salt: This is a simple and easy way to clear our your throat and remove the buildup of mucus and phlegm.  Just pour in warm water in your favorite cup, swirl in some salt, gargle and spit out. The salt will absorb the unwanted phlegm and keep your throat clear temporarily.

Drink hot water with honey and lemon: Drinking this combination will help you relax but it also contains properties that will help fight germs! Honey will help coat your throat whereas the lemon will give you the much needed Vitamin C. Additionally, it's a tasty treat to soothe yourself.

Runny/Stuffy Nose
Breathe in hot steam:  While you're taking a hot shower or if you're drinking a hot beverage (like the one above), be sure to inhale all the steam.  The steam will help clear out your nostril and is an effective way to help with your congestion.  

Saline: The miracles of salt and water continues! If you're not familiar with saline, it's a little bottle that you use to squirt into your nose. It's all natural, though there are products out there that do have medication, but this one doesn't have addiction precautions. So when you can go natural! 

Over the Counter Medicine
Mucinex: Generally speaking I am a strong supporter of generic drugs; however, I am willing to surrender to a product that can deliver admirable results.  This product is one of those items and here's why. It's a duel layer pill that releases part of the medication initially and the rest throughout the day. Brilliant!


What's your best tip with a speedy recovery?



Yours Truly,

Irene

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Budget Backfire + Holiday Bargains!

BUDGET BACKFIRE
I took several advertising and marketing classes back in college and never really thought much of it-- until recently. I engaged in a social experiment and failed miserably, gah!

1. Free doesn't always mean free. So, Panda Express was promoting their Thai Cashew Chicken with a coupon. No purchase necessary.  However, I went during my lunch hour and decided to patron their franchise as I hadn't eaten there since college.  What I didn't realize was how limited the selection was and how outrageously priced greasy Chinese food had become!  $8 for a two item combo and an extra charge for certain items (all shrimp and steak entrees, so basically all the good stuff!). I felt trapped because my lunch hour was finite and I didn't bring a lunch today, bah!!

Lesson learned: If you plan on redeeming a free food item, go with a plan and immediately get out. The tactic of getting you in the store increases a customers willingness to make a purchase and thus make you spend money!

2. Returning products isn't always best plan: Costco is a bit out of the way for me, but I greatly disliked an item that I purchased a week ago an decided to make my first Costco return ever! However, making a trip there, then waiting in line to return an item, I felt obligated to go browse the warehouse. And of course I returned one item and came out with three. Although I will admit that I was running out of lotion and the Aveeno Body Lotion was on sale (so that purchase was justified!). Nevertheless, if a store is able to get you to come in to their store, you will almost without a doubt buy something. I'm having serious buyers remorse now, bah!!!

Lesson learned: If you're going to make a return, create a list of what you need to buy beforehand so that you will stay on track on what you need versus what you want.




HOLIDAY BARGAINS
On a more positive note, the holidays are coming! And every savvy shopper knows to start early.   Here are a few of my picks for the week!

Personalized Xmas Ornaments
I saw online that InkGarden is promoting their personalized alumnium ornaments for $1 (plus $5.49 shipping). My husband and I planned to get an ornament each year representing our marriage, but he was super excited about this deal and wanted to make one himself. So I guess this year we'll have two ornaments for 2012. haha... It will be a gift that will definitely be special as you can customize it with your own photos! Click here for the link. Valid now until Dec 17. Promo Code: CHEERS

Gourmet Marshmellows and Hot chocolate
For the foodie in your life why not consider sending over a holiday favorite? 240 Sweet is participating in Plum District and offering a delicious deal for $14 or $20 depending on the package you select.  If you're not signed up to recieve daily updates with Plum you should. Personally I think they offer better Foodie deals than Groupon and Living Social. Expires on sunday Nov 11, 2012

20% off Makeup
For your glamorous friend why not send some beauty items from beauty.com? Click here to check out the products. Free shipping on orders $25 or more and 20% off deal ends Friday Nov 9. But to save more money sign up with ebates prior to checkout.  Not only will you get a $10 Target card for signing up but also cash back on many online retailers. Currently, beauty.com is getting 6% cash back!



Have you started your holiday shopping and do you have any tips on saving more?



Yours Truly,

Irene

Thursday, November 1, 2012

A Wizard of OZ Halloween Haunt

Halloween is a great time to dress up in an elaborate costume and re-enact a character's role for a day.  My neighborhood takes it to the next level year after year and decks out the block for the one night affair. This year Dr. Tony Nobles orchestrated a Wizard of OZ theme complete with home-made animatronics, actors playing out different scenes from the movie, and props/costumes worthy of a Hollywood backlot tour.  Here area few shots that I snapped on the festive night.     


Who's real and who's not? Can you tell?  


Armies of people flocked to my normally quiet neighborhood, but you have to admit a FREE Hollywood worthy event is definitely a way to put you on the map! And this block party definitely gave MGM studios a run for their money!


Despite the nightmare parking situation (yes even as a resident it was difficult navigating in and out of the area), I was thoroughly entertained and enjoyed the night.

How did you spend your Halloween?


Yours Truly,

Irene