Friday, May 25, 2012

Why I Haven't Been Blogging

Friday (today): Get up, get dressed, go to work, call dealership work all day, go home, get changed, go to dinner, go to happy hour, be Alex's DD, go to sleep because I can't keep my eyes open

Thursday (yesterday): Get up, get dressed, take the trash out, go to work, call dealership, work all day, get a last minute dinner invitation, get car washed, go to dinner with friends, drive home in a torrential downpour, watch a show with Alex while trying (vainly) to get my desk organized, go to sleep because I can't keep my eyes open

Wednesday: Get up, get dressed, go to work, go get license plates for new car, work all day, make dinner, clean up dinner, attempt to put license plates on car, run all over town to get brewing sanitizer and drive by rental houses for Alex's friend, get frozen yogurt, fail to get car washed because it is so late, go to Target, put Target stuff away, go to sleep because I can't keep my eyes open

Tuesday: Get up, get dressed, go to work, work all day, go pick up paperwork for car, run errands, pick up Oklahoma Joe's for dinner (aka wait in line forever for delicious barbecue), eat said barbecue at home, attempt to clean up house

Monday: I don't even remember

Sunday: wake up ungodly early, babysit while Alex and his buddy go golfing, hang out at our friends' house all day so we don't have to drive to Blue Springs twice in one day, softball, drive home, go to sleep because I can't keep my eyes open

So needless to say, I feel like I am never home and when I am home either 1) there are chores to do or 2) I am exhausted and all I want to do is get ready for bed.  Maybe one of these days I will get my life together--hopefully that will be soon.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Cadbury Egg Cookie Cups

I did something silly this past spring.  I gave up candy for lent.  Now you might be wondering why that is silly.  I’m not Catholic, but Alex is and so I try to be supportive.  Anyway, I didn’t realize until after I had started that I should not have done that and by then it was too late and I was committed.  It was not my best idea because Cadbury Eggs are my favorite candy.  I actually had never had one until I went to England.  There, they are available all year round but here in the States you can only find them around Easter.  And they don’t age well so you can’t hang on to them too long (I learned that last summer).  So I guess if you are really into Lenten sacrifice, then it was a good choice.  If you are into Cadbury Eggs, it was silly.

Luckily for me, I stumbled across this pin on Pinterest.   Bingo, just what I needed.  I decided this was a cookie, not candy, so didn’t count.  I had no idea how easy it was to make the filling.


The recipe made a ton of filling, way more than I needed.  I thought about eating it with a spoon, but thought Alex might judge me for doing so.  It was also kind of runny, which is how I like my Cadbury Eggs.  The only problem with that it is made Alex transporting the majority of them to work the next day somewhat of a precarious operation.  I also next time might try to cook my cookie cups a little less and maybe make them a little less thick.  They were delicious though and really hit the I-shouldn’t-have-given-up-candy-for-Lent spot. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Tips & Tricks: Daily Deal Sites

I know that a lot of people are already onto the daily deal sites, but in case you aren't, I thought I would share some that I use along with some of my rules for using the sites.  

First, my rules for buying from daily deal sites.  My number one rule is to be picky.  Yeah, a lot of the time they are really great deals.  But if you aren't going to end up using them, then they are just a waste of money.  Generally, if I wouldn't pay full price for something, then I don't get it from a deal site.  For restaurants, I only buy the ones for places we already go or for places where we have talked about wanting to go in the past.  For activity ones, I only buy them if it is something that we would do without a coupon.  And for goods, I try to be selective.  It has to be really cheap and it has to be something I would get in the store.

My next tip it to be sure you are aware of the fine print and when they expire.  Before you buy, check to make sure there aren't any restrictions.  Some of the travel deals a great, but you can only use them at certain times or during the week or something.  Same for the activity ones--I will sometimes buy the golf ones for Alex, but I always check to make sure they aren't only good for the winter or something like that.  For goods, be sure to check about shipping prices.  Sometimes it doesn't seem like such a good deal when you add on shipping. And finally, make sure you are aware of expiration dates.  For anything that does not ship automatically, I like to print out a hard copy of the deal.  I keep it in a notebook with other household papers and flip through it on occasion to see what I have that I need to use.  Also, for restaurants and activities, beware of waiting until the last minute.  If it was a popular one, a lot of people might be trying to use it at the last minute too and you might not be able to get in.

Now for the deal sites I use.  The one I use most often is Groupon.  
 They have a wide variety of deals, including restaurants, activities and goods.  They are divided up by city, but you can buy Groupons for any city.  Recently, we have gotten Groupons for dinner at various restaurants, Mattress Firm, Old Navy, Shutterfly, a hair cut for Alex (now that is one of the only places he will get his hair cut at), golf, vinyl decals, a Chiefs mat, bowling, wine tasting and cupcakes.  As long as you are selective in what you buy, Groupon can save a lot of money.  The Chiefs mat was a gift for Alex and the one for Mattress Firm saved us $150 on our new bed (we already knew we were going to get a new bed, so it was  a good buy for us).

The other site we use the most often is Muncharoo.
It is just for Kansas City and is only restaurants.  The deals tend to cost less, so we are more willing to buy one that we aren't so sure about.  We have gotten vouchers for BB's Lawnside BBQ, Paprico's Mexican Restaurant, Hamburger Mary's, John's Big Deck, Westport Flea Market and others.  They also do free deals every once and a while.

The two sites I use the most for stuff (rather than restaurants or activities) are Pick Your Plum and Very Jane.
Pick Your Plum tends to be more craft supplies and Very Jane is stuff you would find on Etsy.  I buy for myself and for gifts.  The only thing I would note is that sometimes the stuff comes speedy quick but other times it takes what seems like a very long time.  

I get Living Social's emails, but rarely, if ever, buy from them.  No real reason, I think their stuff just tends to be more expensive that I want to pay or stuff I won't use.  I have also from time to time bought from a deal site when I learned about the deal from a blog or something, like one time we got a deal for a website that specializes in putting pictures of dogs on wine bottles, which combines Alex's parents' two favorite things.  It made for a great gift.

I hope you find this somewhat informative.  My biggest piece of advice when using daily deal site is just to be picky about what you buy and to read the fine print.