Saturday, July 11, 2009
Friday, July 3, 2009
Monday, April 13, 2009
Last week, I found a new site called http://www.cash4books.net/. It is as easy to use as Amazon.com and Ebay. Simply register for free, enter the ISBN (number found on the back of the book), and see if there is a buyer for the book. If there is, you will see how much the company is willing to pay. Just affix the free postage label and pop it in the mail. I made $23 in around 25 minutes by sorting through all of my books. They will not take all of your books. In 7 out of 8 cases, my books were too old to take, but the process was so easy I was able to enter in over 100 ISBNs within 25 minutes to see the ones that they would take.
On all of these sites, your books should be in good condition so while reading them, do not fold over pages or overtax the spine of the books.
Saturday, April 11, 2009
The least expensive property manager charged 6% per month of the rental charges, but he was a crotchedy old guy who was trying to drive the rental price down dramatically. With his negativity on the phone I could just imagine how he would be with prospective renters, so I declined his services. I'll leave his name off this list to avoid any liabilities.
We also contacted Sierra Property Management. They took a look at the place and said that they would charge 10% and recommended that we reduce the price for a quick rental.
The best deal that we found was with Town 'N Country Property Management. They charge a 7% fee. They are a full service firm that will manage all maintenance, finances, and screen candidates for the monthly fee. The person that I dealt with was amazingly friendly and competent and she spend a full hour with us touring the property. She said that what we were asking for was fair for the property. Since we aren't in a huge rush to rent it out, we are starting at the full price, and if it doesn't rent out by the time the baby comes, (we need more room) we'll drop the price.
This exercise drives home the point that any time you search for a service or a commodity, be sure to get 3 quotes and then follow your gut. The least expensive option is not always the best one, but neither is the most expensive option.
Thursday, April 9, 2009
American Leg of Lamb, $3.99lb.
Cook this whole covered in rosemary harvested from your yard or 'borrow' some from your walk anywhere. It practically grows wild. Add mustard, salt and pepper and roast. With the leftovers, you can make a delicious curry.
Strawberries - 99 cents per pound. (strawberry shortcake or angel food cake for your guests?)
Split chicken breasts - 99 cents per pound. Stock up.
Nabisco crackers - buy one get one free.
Philadelphia cream cheese, 10 for $10 (how about strawberry cheesecake?)
Beef Rib Roast (prime rib dinner) - $3.47 lb.
Farmer John Full Ham (ham for Easter, ham and eggs for the following breakfasts, and use the bone for split pea soup.) 77 cents per pound
Green Beans - 88 cents per pound
Onions - 2 lbs. for $1
In Sunday's circular I noticed a small ad about their trade in program for used electronics. I piled old digital cameras and a laptop into my car and drove to the local store. Even though the items worked, 2 out of three of them were too old so they wouldn't take them. On the third item - a 7 megapixel camera, they would be happy to take it for $17. This was a $125 camera last year and it still works well. I decided to pass on the deals. I compared selling these items on Ebay and found that I could get 300% to 400% more for the camera and that I could easily sell the items that Radio Shack turned away. Recommendation? Skip the trip to Radio Shack until you are ready to purchase items. Post your items on Ebay and then upgrade your electronics with your earnings.
Happy Easter everyone!
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Ralphs Gallon Milk - $1.99
Large Haas Avocados - 68 cents each
Roma tomatoes - 88 cents per pound
Boneless chuck steak or roast - $2.99lb.
Celery - 99 cents each
Ralphs frozen vegetables - 89 cents for 14 to 16 oz packages
Philadelphia brick cream cheese - 10 for $10
Ocean Spray cranberry cocktail drink - $1.99
Lucerne butter - 99 cents for 16oz with coupon
Life or Cap'n Crunch - 99 cents with coupon
Foster Farms whole chicken - 77 cents per pound
80% lean ground beef - $1.67lb.
Boneless pork sirloin chops - $1.77lb.
Cross Rib Roast - $1.97 lb.
Broccoli - 88 cents per pound
3 lb. apple bags - $1.99 each
Pork spareribs 99 cents per pound
Lobster tails - $3.99 each
Large mangos 3 for 99 cents
Mini seedless watermelon - $1.99 each
Kiwi - 3 for 99 cents
Texas grapefruit - 69 cents each
Saturday, March 28, 2009
Get your free online pregnancy calendar from WhatToExpect.com
As you can see, I'm 26 weeks, 1 day along and have 97 days until the due date. It can be customized for whether you are having a boy or girl, or whether you don't know yet. Besides the cute bells and whistles, there are plenty of blogs, articles, and coupons to make this website a first stop when I need to choose a baby name, have concerns about new symptoms, or just want to daydream about when I get to hold the new delivery in my arms. If you know someone who is pregnant, be sure to share this website with them.
Friday, March 27, 2009
The Mix and Match sale is back. Pick up a circular in their store. Groups of items are arranged by price point. If you prchase 10 of these items, you will receive an instant $5 off.
Whole Chicken: 69 cents per pound
Wish Bone Salad Dressing: $1.29 each
Jazz Apples: 99 cents per pound
Iceberg lettuce: 2 for $1
Hot house tomatoes: 99 cents per pound
Large navel oranges: 39 cents per pound
Green seedless grapes: 79 cents per pound
Boneless Pork Loin: $1.99 lb.
Strawberries: 99 cents per pound
Life cereal: 4 for $4
Boneless rump roast: $2.99 lb.
Fresh Express garden salad or slaws: 99 cents per pound
Green onions and radishes: 2 for $1
Brown onions 2 for $1
Van de Kamp's English Muffins: 99 cents per pound
Farmer John skinless pork links: 99 cents per pound
Roma tomatoes: 99 cents per pound
Saturday, March 21, 2009
Fresh Split Foster Farms Chicken Breasts: .97 per lb.
Russet Potatoes, 5lb. bag: .97 per lb.
Beef Cross Rib or Rump Roast: $1.97 per lb.
Green Asparagus: .97 per lb.
Cottonelle and Viva bath tissue and towels: $5.99 12 double rolls and 8 rolls respectively
Dannon and horizon yogurt: 10 for $5
Nabisco crackers: 2 for $4
There is an interesting mix and match special that can save you plenty of money. It is a bit convoluted for my taste, and easy to mess up, so be sure to pick up the circular from the store to see the specials. If you do, you will save 35 to 50% on the items. In addition, here are some great specials:
Fugi and Gala apples: .68 lb.
Lucerne yogurt: .40 each if you buy ten
Daffodils: 2 bunches for $3
Raw lobster tails: $3.99 each - time for that lobster dinner!
Cantaloupe: .25 per lb.
Nectarines: .69 per lb. today only
Softsoap: .89 each today only
Eggo Waffles: 3 for $4.98
Beer, wine and spirits sale: 30% off this week for many brands
Cucumbers: .79 each
The Home Depot:
Through 3/22 - 4 inch annuals only 3 for $1, limit 60 - I've never seen such a low price on these. If you are a fan of big splashes of color that only last a few months, stock up on these. For the more practical, frugal shoppers, it is worth the expense to purchase perennials which are always more expensive, but will give you color year after year.
Gallon staked pink jasmine - $3.88 - you can't beat the fragrance of these little pink flowers.
2 cubic ft. bark nuggets - $1.88 - great for mulching around your new annuals. Only through 3/22.
In a previous email, I mentioned several computer deals, but after visiting the stores, decided that it would be better to wait than to purchase these now.
Sunday, March 15, 2009
Colgate toothpaste is free with the extra bucks using the CVS card.
Irish Spring body wash is also free with the extra bucks using the CVS card.
Fig Newtons and Lorna Doons - 5 for $5
Ajax liquid detergent - 99 cents with card
Altoids - 2 for $2
Sun-Maid Raisins 18 oz - $1.99 with coupon
Royal Gelatin - 5 for $1 with coupon
Dinty Moore beef stew - 2 for $3
1 lb. epsom salt and hydrogen peroxide - 2 for $1 with coupon
Palmolive dish liquid - 99 cents with coupon
6 big rolls of Charmin - $3.49 with coupon
Kleenex - 89 cents with coupon
1 dozen eggs for 2 for $3 Thursday through Saturday
C&H Sugar 2 for $5
Pillsbury all purpose flour - 2 for $4
Ajax dish liquid - 99 cents
There are several good values on laptop computers right now at Staples, Office Max and Radio Shack that I'm going to check out and report on soon since my laptop is on its last legs. Upcoming blogs will also report on Australia vs. US health care system, good travel buys and more. Stay tuned.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Since I'm a little over 5 months pregnant, I'm a bit leery about using pesticides or heavy duty chemicals around the house. That eliminated Raid and the super effective ant killers. I'd heard somewhere that everyday household cleaners work just as well as bug spray to kill ants so I tried it. First, I zapped a line of ants with a can of Lysol and a handful of paper towels...on my hands and knees....yep...it worked, but the smell of Lysol got to me. Next, I grabbed the Swiffer wet and started sweeping up the ants. Aha! perfect solution. The ants were killed and cleaned up at the same time.
Swiffer wet is not normally on a frugal list of grocery supplies, but in my case, it is a lifesaver. Having a pet around ensures that we need to mop the floor almost every day, and using Pine Sol or other floor cleaners is out of the question due to toxicity. Swiffer got a bad reputation a few years ago about killing pets, but through extensive testing, the rep was unfounded - unless your pets are of the 6 legged kind.
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Green asparagus - 99 cents per pound
Atlantic salmon fillet - $3.99 lb.
Ripe tomatoes on the vine - $1.88 lb.
Grilling shrimp - $4.99 lb.
Iceberg lettuce - 99 cents per pound
Cottonelle bath tissue 99 cents
Kleenex 99 cents
Split chicken breasts 99 cents per pound
Atlantic salmon $3.99 per pound
20 for $10: Albertson's canned tomatoes, Campbell's soups, Albertson's packaged seasonings
Starkist chunk light tuna: 69 cents per can
Red grapefruit: 69 cents each
Italian or yellow squash: 99 cents per pound
They have a $10 coupon on the circular to use if you spend over $50.
48 hour sale on Saturday and Sunday:
Lucerne large eggs - 97 cents per dozen
Campbell's select soups - 88 cents per can
Blueberries - 18 oz. for $2.88
Chicken breast halves - 97 cents per lb.
Green Asparagus - 97 cents per lb.
Russet potatoes - $1.97 for a 10lb. bag
Lucerne butter - 99 cents for a lb. with coupon
Raisin Bran - 99 cents for a box with coupon
The following produce is $1
Broccoli, Cauliflower, navel oranges, 3 lbs. of onions in a bag, iceberg lettuce, zucchini or yellow squash, eggplant, baby peeled carrots
Thursday, January 8, 2009
Foster Farms fresh whole chicken fryer - $0.77 per pound
Rancher's Reserve Boneless Beef Pot Roast - $1.99 per pound
Boneless Pork Sirloin Chops - $1.77 per pound
Pork Loin Back Ribs - $1.97 per pound
Yoplait 10 for $5
Grapefruit 3 for $1
Apples - 3lb bag for $1.49 with a coupon
Dennison's Chili 10 for $10
Fresh Peaches $0.99 lb
Blueberries $0.99 for 6 oz with coupon
Green Bell peppers 2 for $1
Boneless Chuck Roast $1.99 lb.
Cornish Game Hens $0.99 lb.
Cantaloupes 3 lbs. for $1
Iceberg Lettuce 2 for $1
Roma tomatoes 2 for $3
Carrots 2 lb. packages for $1
Sunday, January 4, 2009
Michaels - 40% off coupon. Many items are 50% off and the Christmas items are up to 80% off.
Von's - Yoplait yogurt - 10 for $5
Walgreen's - Puff's tissues, $.89; Progresso soup, 4 for $5; Deerfield Farms dried fruit, $1; Ajax cleanser, 3 for $1; Wax paper and Reynolds aluminum foil, $.99
Long's Drugs - They are having a good Thursday through Sunday sale this week. Normally, I don't like these sales, because I often accidentally shop on an off-sale day and end up paying full price. However, It is time to stock up on the following items that will be offered at 12 for $10.
Stove Top Stuffing, Lindsay olives, walnut grove whole peeled tomatoes, S&W beans, Anderson's split pea soup, Duncan Hines cake mixes.
Rite Aid - Free with rebate items...Gotta love them. Garnier Fructis Shampoo, conditioner or stylers, SoyJoy nutrition bar.
Saturday, January 3, 2009
Now that the economy has shifted a bit, I am rethinking my decision. Certain plants do make some sense. Herbs that come back every year like oregano, basil, and rosemary do very well in our Mediterranean climate. Grapevines are a beautiful addition and only cost $3.99 for two plants. I use the young leaves that I remove for stuffed grape leaves and the culled vines for wreaths. Tomatoes and berry bushes are the best homegrown value, since they are so expensive in Santa Barbara. I have replaced my annual plant borders that took so much water with attractive herbs, citrus trees, and vegetables and hope for the best.
Thursday, January 1, 2009
Happy New Year to you too! To make the most of the year, I have a few pieces of advice.
If we are in a depression, go against the grain.
1. When people are panicking and selling - BUY - That goes for homes and stocks.
2. Use up what you already have and own before you buy new things - they will be cheaper the longer you wait.
3. Turn off the news, cancel the newspaper, and get rid of any financial subscriptions that you have. They are full of bad advice.
4. Spend time with family - the best and cheapest way to spend time.
5. Enjoy the downturn in the economy. It is now hip to be frugal. No need to buy the latest and greatest things. Even Bloomingdales is going back to their brown paper bag.
6. If you are married and have a 2 wage earning household and one of you loses your job because of the economy, why not try living on one wage for a while. In the meantime, the non-working person can fix up the house, make gourmet meals, go back to school to get a better job, take care of the kids, etc. There will never be a better time to live on one wage, because costs are dropping for everything right now.
7. Plant that vegetable garden in your backyard or on your apartment patio. Tomatoes, radishes, fancy lettuces, and beans grow well on patios.
8. Besides the veggie garden, get rid of all water hogging shrubbery. There are plenty of succulents that thrive without ever needing water from a hose.
9. Only buy new items for the things that would make you squeemish if you were to buy used - underwear, bras, swimsuits, workout wear, and things that baby's pee on.
10. Embrace the savings game. Coupons are back in style.