Saturday, November 20, 2010

Ways to Save at Hallmark

When you sign up through this link at Hallmark you can choose your reward and one of them is $10 off a $10 or more purchase!

Also, be sure to check your magazines because Martha Stewart Living and at least one other (I think it might have been Real Simple) have coupon inserts for $5 off a $5 or more purchase. This includes clearance and sale items!


Picnic Plates & Flatware Set for $3.59 Shipped

Check out this 20 piece picnic set which includes 4 plates, 4 forks, 4 knives, 4 tablespoons, and 4 teaspoons. It has a cute blue and white daisy pattern. This would be great for picnic or even just for use in the backyard. Right now it's only $3.99 from Woman Within, but when you use promo code ww46998 you'll get 10% off and free shipping. That makes this only $3.59 shipped!

While your there be sure to see if there is anything else you're interested in because the promo code applies to your entire order making everything 10% and free shipping on the order.


Still looking for some last minute Thanksgiving recipes?

If you're still looking for some last minute Thanksgiving recipes, check out this free downloadable copy of the Martha Stewart Thanksgiving Hotline Recipes Cookbook.


Friday, November 19, 2010

Holiday Gift Guide: Creative (and cheap!) Ways to Wrap Your Christmas Gifts

Everyone has seen the typical Santa and snowmen covered Christmas paper rolls at the store, but why not add some flair to your gift wrap and help our your wallet too!

Butcher Paper

Butcher's paper is wonderful because it is so versatile. You can get a large roll for a small amount and with a little creativity it can go a long way! The same ideas also work with brown package paper.

Ways to make it your own:

  • Pick a stamp and ink pad you love then stamp your own pattern. You will be able to control the placement and no two pieces of paper will look alike. Then ties with ribbon or twine.
  • Crumple the paper first. This looks really cool when you do it with the brown paper (you can even recycle packing paper you get from when the gifts you buy are shipped to you). Then tie it up with raffia or twine.
  • If you have kids, let them color on the paper so that each gift comes with a special drawing.


At some point or another we have all seen someone use newspapers to wrap a gift, but it's honestly a great way to recycle the papers and make your gift look unique. BUT don't use just any section -- try to use the comics for children or find pages with holiday themed pictures or puzzles. You might also try foreign newspapers to add a little interest and flair.  

Paper Bags

As we all know, some gifts just can't be easily wrapper, but this is where those paper bags from the grocery store come in handy! Get a sponge brush and your favorite color paint and paint the bags in thin layers until whatever was printed on the bag is covered. If you're lucky enough to score plain paper bags, you can even use the stamp idea from above to pattern them.


Honestly, who doesn't love a gift basket? Contrary to belief gift baskets are not hard to make! If you have a few small gifts for the same person this works great. Pick up an appropriate sized basket for your gift. You can get them for as little as $1 at Dollar Tree and sometimes at Walmart. Arrange the items in the basket so that everything can be seen. If you need to prop things up used crumpled up paper (tissue paper, newspaper, etc) to get them to the appropriate height. You can then either take the basket open as it is or get cellophane and cover it. If you choose to cover it you have a few options: a gift basket bag (you just put the whole basket in and then tie the top close with a ribbon); shrink wrap cellophane (where you put the basket in and then use a blow dryer to shrink the cellophane to fit the basket); or just regular cellophane rolls. If you choose the latter, you take two piece and make a + with them on the table. Then center the basket in the middle. Gather the four ends at the top and secure with a ribbon.

Gift Tag Ideas
  • Postcards
  • Old Christmas cards (many people do not write on the inside front, so just cut off a small portion of the design and use it as a gift tag)
  • Cut out traditional shaped tags and stamp them to match your paper (see above)
  • Magazine cutouts decoupaged to card stock (take the picture and place it on the card stock, then use a foam brush and Mod Podge to secure it on by painting thin layer over one side of the card, then right on the reverse)
  • Wooden tags: get small wooden squares or shapes from your craft store (the very thin ones) and use a permanent marker to write on them and paint pens to decorate them

Gift Decoration Accents
  • Fresh or fake poinsettia flowers (only use fresh if your giving the gift the same day)
  • Christmas Ornament (these go on sale right before the holiday and make such a nice touch in lieu of a bow)
  • Origami creations: a crane, paper flowers, etc.
  • Tassels (you can usually find these at the dollar store as well)
  • Small toy (like a Matchbox car if the gift is for a young boy)
  • Raffia bows
Alternatives to Using Ribbon
  • Baker's string
  • Twine
  • Raffia
  • Yarn wrapped around a couple times
  • Paper strips 
  • Paint ribbon lines on your paper

Free Votive Candle Tomorrow 11/20 at Yankee Candle

Yankee Candle's Facebook page has some great savings links on it right now -- including this freebie in their stores tomorrow! Be sure to like them on Facebook to find these ads.

Tomorrow participating Yankee Candle Stores are having a Holiday Open House and from 10 am - 12pm they are giving away 1 free votive candle per customer while supplies last. If you're heading out to the mall to do some shopping, be sure to stop by!


Holiday Deal from the Washington Nationals

So I know that it is crazy-early to start thinking about next season's baseball games, but the Washington Nationals are offering a pretty awesome deal. I got a post card about this in the mail today:

Washington Nationals Holiday 3 Pack
-Opening Day March 31 vs. Atlanta Braves
-Battle of the Beltways - June 17 vs. Baltimore Orioles
-Independence Day July 4 vs. Chicago Cubs

That's a pretty great set of games, plus you get a free Christmas ornament.

All this starting at only $30! (for upper level RF seats, there are other seats available too for higher rates)

Check it out at


Free Box of Garnier HerbaShine Hair Color

I dye my hair, but most of the time I have roots because it's just too expensive to keep it up. BUT not this holiday season! Garnier is giving away free boxes of HerbaShine Hair Color as part of their HerbaShine Holiday Giveaway. Go to their website and fill out the form here and they will mail you a coupon for a free box.


**Retail Discounts**

I know everyone is doing their Christmas shopping, so here are the best retail discounts I could find today:

  • GameStop: 15% off any in-stock game $25 or more with promo code 15GAME
  • L.L. Bean: 20% off any purchase $50 of more with promo code NOVEMBER20
  • 20% off and free shipping with promo code EMLTHXGIVING10
  • Container Store: 20% off with promo code ncnvtndec2x
  • Kohls: 20% off everything with promo code QUIET20OFF
  • Gap: 30% off $150, 20% off $100, and 15% off $75 with promo code SAVEBIG
  • Old Navy: 30% off $150, 20% off $100, and 15% off $75 with promo code SAVEBIG
  • Banana Republic: 30% off $150, 20% off $100, and 15% off $75 with promo code SAVEBIG
  • Maidenform: 30% off everything with promo code FFE3Q4

Free Stuff Times

So as you know, I post a lot of freebies here, BUT I only post ones that I request and can verify and the best of the best. I don't post everything I find.

If you are looking to score awesome freebies, be sure to check out Free Stuff Times. This is a great website and lists only legitimate freebies. The guy who runs it is also very communicative and constantly updating the listings so that you'll know when a link isn't working or the offer has expired. It's definitely worth checking out!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

$20 Gilt Groupe Credit is Back!

This time Gilt Groupe has partnered with the Washington Nationals to offer a $20 credit when you sign up. You must sign up through this link to get the credit! You can still get free shipping when you refer 10 friends by e-mail (they do NOT have to even sign up for you to get free shipping). There are lots of things $20 and under making them completely free shipped! Great if you're looking for Christmas gifts.

NOTE: The credit expires 1 week after registration, so act fast after you sign up!


Need a Funny Gift? Check out Nacho Mama Tees

So if you haven't noticed, I've been on a bit of a t-shirt kick recently. I find funny t-shirts to be endlessly amusing and I've wasted countless hours browsing them online. My most recent find: and they were generous enough to offer me a t-shirt to review

First, let's acknowledge the name...NachoMama --it's pretty funny. I expect that a site that says it's a source for funny things to have a funny name and this delivers. Might not be necessary to point that out, but it amused me for a good few minutes and I wanted to leave a moment to appreciate the humor.

Now onto the shirt. My husband loves scary movies (I hate them!), but what he loves more than scary movies are things that have a funny spin off his favorite movies. That's why I knew he would LOVE this shirt. He is a big fan of the Friday the 13th movies and with Halloween and everything, I knew it would get some great reactions. The What Would Jason Do? t-shirt was a big hit with his friends.

The shirt came fast and in sturdy, weatherproof packing. Shirt was great quality and ran true to size. The seams were sturdy and the shirt was made of a soft, medium-weight fabric. The white printing was well done on the black background. It can be hard to get true white on black without it looking grey, but I was impressed with the quality of the design. 

He and his friends had never seen this shirt before. Which is pretty nice. How many times have you seen the same t-shirts over and over? NachoMama  provides an awesome selection of funny t-shirts that you won't find everywhere else or in all the mall stores. They especially have a lot of great movie t-shirts capturing the essence of your favorite inside jokes in something you wear! They were definitely impressed, as was I, with wide selection of t-shirts available. The prices were awesome too! Most of the shirts were between $10-$15 and they offer a daily deal where the select t-shirts are only $6.99!

If you are looking for a great holiday gift for a hard to shop for person, I would highly suggest you head over to to find something funny and unique that will keep them and everyone around them amused!

FTC Disclosure: This is not a paid post, all opinions expressed are 100% my own honest opinions. I did receive my choice of a t-shirt from to write this review. I was given the opportunity to participate with this review through my involvement in SheBlogs

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Holiday Gift Guide - DIY Christmas Gift Ideas for the Family

Shopping for your family around the holidays can be hard. I don't mean your spouse or sibling or kids. I mean those relatives that you only see around the holidays and have no idea what they like or what their interests are. You know who I mean. It can be incredibly difficult trying to come up with something thoughtful and not just whatever you can find on the generic gift shelf of your local Walmart/Target/Etc. Here are some ideas that you can make in bulk to give out to those family members, but will still maintain that personal touch!

Cookbook of Family Recipes

If you are looking for a gift that you can give all of your relatives (you know the ones you don't buy personally for) consider putting together a collection of favorite recipes into a Family Cookbook! My husband and I start doing this and I love that we have all of the favorites right at hand without digging through numerous cookbooks or calling up relatives to get the instructions for this or that.

With the holidays coming up everyone will be cooking up their best and most delicious for Thanksgiving, holiday cookies, and Christmas get togethers making now a great time to ask! Send an email around or put in some phone calls asking everyone for their favorite recipe or two. You can then put them together in a cookbook style layout in your word processor, print them out, and then take them to your local copy store to get a plastic cover and spiral bound. If you don't have time to get to the print shop or if one is not convenient in your area, websites like Lulu will allow you to submit your file and they will print them and mail it to you (this a more expensive option though).

Your family will love this gift, especially if you have recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation. I've never received one of these from anyone, but I would have been thrilled if someone in my family had put one together (which is why we started one)!


If you have been following my blog, I'm sure you've noticed that you can get great deals on photobooks and many times can even get them free if you just pay shipping and handling (and many times you can score that free too!). These make wonderful presents for grandparents and distant relatives. You just upload your photos and drag and drop them into whichever layout you pick. You can also customize layouts on many sites if you're feeling extra crafty.

For photobooks, my favorites are Shutterfly, Snapfish, and Kodak. Keep checking back because I post deals for these sites as I find them!

Family Trees

To do this you'll need:

  • Large pieces of heavy weight paper 
  • A leaf stamp
  • Green ink pad
  • Brown colored pencils or markers 
  • Pencil 
  • Ruler
  • Black Marker or Calligraphy Pen
Place your paper horizontally. Use the brown markers or colored pencils to draw a trunk at the bottom center of your paper.

Beginning at the top center of your paper, draw lines for the lineal starting point. Then branch your tree out appropriately from there using the ruler to draw you connecting lines. Use the black pen to write your family's name at the top and fill in the names on the lines you've just created.

Then fill in the tree with the leaf stamp.

If you are not very crafty or hate your handwriting (I cannot write in cursive to save my life), you can print out the pieces and use double stick tape to the paper. When you're done take it up to Kinko's and have it color copied and the lines where the pieces are attached to the paper should disappear on the copy.

If you really want to add a nice touch, find a vintage looking frame at your local thrift store. 

CVS Extra Bucks!

In CVS stores right now, they have the CVS pharmacy gift book (it's up near the register). Be sure to pick one up because inside is a coupon to get $4 Extra Bucks when you spend $20. It will print on your receipt for use on your next purchase. Such an easy way to gain some Extra Bucks if you're already shopping there!

Free Stainless Steel Stacked Ring (just pay shipping)

Do you know someone who likes to be a little rough around the edges with their jewelry? Or looking for a piece with a bit of an industrial flair?

Check out this stainless steel stacked ring available on Tanga today for $0.00 -- that's right FREE! You just pay $4.99 shipping and handling. They have lots of sizes too.

Free Sample of Burt's Bees Body Lotion

I am loving all the Facebook freebies -- it's about time companies jumped on the Facebook marketing bandwagon!

Right now when you go to the Burt's Bees page on Facebook through this link and type in something about what your skin is saying, you'll be taken to a form to request your free sample. I <3 Burt's Bees and I'm sure you will too. They're lip balm is a lifesaver so I can't wait to try the lotion.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Extra 25% Off at New York & Company Tomorrow!

If you haven't signed up for New York & Company's email list, you totally should! You'll get these deals straight in your inbox. I love their clothes, so I was super excited to find out that tomorrow Nov. 17 only they are offering an additional 25% off your purchase! (both in stores and online). Use promo code 6183.

Holiday Gift Guide - Gifts for Your Favorite Fashionista

Over the next few weeks leading up to Christmas, I will be writing my holiday gift guide with my picks for great gifts and ideas for DIY gifts, creative wrappings, hostess gifts and the like. Enjoy!

Here's my picks for gifts and stockings stuffers for your favorite fashionista. Everything is priced $10 or less:

Classic Leatherette Wallet from Forever 21 - $4.99

Black Patent Mesh Ruffle Open Toe Dress Sandals from Ami Clubwear - $7.99

Enamel Flower Stud Earrings from The Limited - $9.99

Gingermen Bath Bomb from Lush - $6.95

Love Spell Holiday Limited-Edition Shimmer Lotion from Victoria's Secret - $10 (or you can get any 6 products from their Secret Garden Collection for 6/$30!)

Monday, November 15, 2010 = Your Source for Awesome T-shirts

My husband loves t-shirts, he basically lives in them. So when I was given the opportunity to write a review for Costume Squad I jumped at the chance! I was sent this awesome iconic Jaws t-shirt to review.

First, a little about this particular shirt. It is incredibly soft! Thick, rough t-shirts are the worst, but this is definitely not one of them. The fabric was incredibly comfortable and it breathed well. (I stole the shirt from my husband and wore it for a day). The quality was also impressive. The stitching on the shirt was solid, save for one small long thread end we simply trimmed off. If you wear a lot of t-shirts you know how important the stitching can be - it make all the difference in whether the bottom or the sleeve ends hems become undone. Beyond that the quality of the printing on the shirt was also great. The white was very white against the green. I know that sounds kind of silly, but many times the color of the screen print becomes tinted and looks faded or dingy -- that was definitely not the case with this shirt.

My husband is a hard-core Jaws fan -- it is his favorite movie. He was so excited about this shirt because we have never seen anything like it. Not only did we find this shirt at Costume Squad, but they have tons of other movie t-shirts as well! They are by far going to be one of our go to sources for funny t-shirts from here on out. 

In addition to their seemingly endless selection of t-shirts, as their name suggests they also carry TONS of funny and hard to find costumes! I especially love that they have movie costumes. Although Halloween just passed, it's never too early to start thinking about next year or just throwing a costume party just to show off the great costume you find at Costume Squad (I would anyway, but that's just me).

Be sure to head on over and check it all out at Costume Squad -- it's totally worth your time and won't break the bank. You'll get some great laughs from their selection and be sure to check to check them out on Facebook and sign up for their email alerts to score discounts and maybe even free stuff (links to do this are located at the bottom of their page).

AND just in case you find one their t-shirts somewhere else for less, they offer a 100% price match guarantee. Awesome.

FTC Disclosure: This is not a paid post, all opinions expressed are 100% my own honest opinions. I did receive my choice of a t-shirt from Costume Squad to write this review. I was given the opportunity to participate with this review through my involvement in SheBlogs

Sunday, November 14, 2010

New Code

Use promo code GIVE at to get 80% off! This makes $25 gift certificates only $2!!!

ULTA Coupons

Go here to print out these ULTA coupons to use in the store or refer to the corresponding code for online use.

  • 20% off any one item good through Nov. 20 - online coupon code 40162
  • $3.50 off $10 purchase good through Dec. 3 - online coupon code 47702
  • Free shipping on ALL orders $25 or more - online coupon code 512213


Free $20 Credit to Gilt Groupe!

If you sign up for Gilt Groupe through this link, you can still take advantage of the promotion to get $20 in free credit and when you refer 10 friends just by entering their emails (they don't have to sign up or buy anything!!) you get free shipping! And with lots of items under $20 you can get something completely free.

Hurry, because I have no idea how long this promotion will last! I got my makeup bag that I posted about previously and I love it. It also came super fast! Shipped the next day and got here in 2 days by UPS ground.

So what are you waiting for?


Free Cheese Variety Guide

This is kind of an unusual freebie, but if you like cheese or use it in a lot of your cooking it could really be a handy thing to have! Wisconsin Cheese is giving away free cheese variety guides covering 33 popular cheese from Wisconsin. You can get yours by signing up here.

Thanks Cyn's Coupons 4 U!

Department Store Discounts

J.C. Penny

  • Save 20% through 11/15 with promo code 4NICEVIP

  • Free shipping on qualifying orders with promo code SANTA see their webpage for details on what qualifies
  • 20% off with promo code FFSAVE

Free Ring Sizer from Blue Nile

Get a free ring sizer from Blue Nile by signing up here. My guess is that it's one of the flat ones that you stick your finger through to figure out the right size (or you can lay a ring on it and match it to the corresponding hole to determine the size). Great thing to have on hand when your trying to determine whether or not to take your ring in to be re-sized!

Green Tea Hawaii Samples

Green Tea Hawaii is giving out free samples of their 3 flavors, original, Pineapple / Strawberry, and Raspberry Lemonade (1 pixie each). Just sign up on their website with the form on the right hand side.

Free Avery Shipping Labels

For all of you who do a lot of shipping (selling books on Amazon anyone?) these are great. Sign up here to get a free sample of Avery shipping labels (last time I got a free sample from Avery it was a couple sheets).


Free Bottle of Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce

Head on over to Country Bob's Online and sign up to receive a coupon for a FREE bottle of Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce.

Note: this is a regional freebie, so if stores in your area don't carry this brand they won't send you the coupon.


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