Monday, December 29, 2008

I have never been more glad I found couponing...

As I was leaving work last Tuesday, I got a call from daycare saying that Sean had just thrown up 4 times. Phew! Poor little guy was screaming in the background and the first thing that crossed my mind was "I hope his tonsillectomy wound has healed"!! Could you imagine? Scary stuff. He was completely miserable and pale as a ghost when I arrived. He snuggled with me for a little while then we bundled up and drove home.

Once we arrived home he said he was feeling better, ate some pretzels and two bananas and slept all night long. Nevertheless, he could not go back to daycare the following day so (as his ever-helpful father said he couldn't possibly) I stayed home with Sean on Christmas Eve Day, even though it meant with no pay as I am OUT of vacation time. It wasn't until later that I remembered our policy at work...if you call in the day before or the day after a holiday, you don't get paid for the holiday. It was confirmed today - ZERO pay for TWO days!!!!! Awesome.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

And the winner is...ME!!!!!!

My friend Jenny hosts a great (and very funny) blog called Mommin' It Up ( - tell her I sent you!). She is also the wonderful buddy of mine who has saved me a fortune this year by introducing me to couponing - she is the Queen of couponing!! But I digress...
She has now gone one step further - I won the latest contest on her blog!!!
There are so many fantastic prizes that you will just have to check it out for yourself...
Thanks Jenny and Emily! You guys rock!!!!! Sean is going to be so excited!!!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Are we back in Australia???

It is going to be 71 degrees tomorrow! It should be snowing and freezing cold but if all goes to plan, we will be at the zoo - without the need for jackets, scarves and gloves! It's either going to be a very mild winter...or it will be hitting us really hard later in the season! In the meantime, I will be taking advantage as much as possible!!!

***Update: The severe wind warnings in Cincinnati scared us away from the zoo I'm afraid, but we did head out to Easton in Columbus and score some incredible deals at Gymboree, Crate and Barrel, Pottery Barn and Williams Sonoma!!! Not a wasted day by any means...

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Extra Extra!! Read all about it...

You can say that I am corny all you want, but Wondertime paid me $75 for this submission!! Yeah, baby!!!

Read all about it!!!! 
Wondertime - January 2009

Monday, December 8, 2008

Those were the days, my friend...

Pop, you are forever in our hearts and memories. You lived an incredible life. You were loved for a lifetime by one of the kindest women on earth. You have a large, wonderful family and I have the honour of being your first grandchild. I have a life full of memories of time spent with you. Sean will hear stories throughout his life of the things you accomplished and of the memories I have. You will always be loved. You will always be missed.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Such a sad sight

Isn't this just the saddest picture? Poor little Seany sleeping off his surgery. It has been a very rough recovery for him (and me!). I would not recommend the surgery to anyone unless it is ABSOLUTELY necessary...the pain my little boy has been in is unbearable to see. On Sunday I thought I was going to have to take him back to hospital as he would not eat or drink anything. His first 'good' afternoon was Monday (yesterday), 5 full days after his surgery. And, his night was still terrible. I went back to work today while he stayed with his Dad. When i visited after work (he will stay with him for a couple of days) he fell asleep in my arms. I can't tell you how many times I have cried in the past week! It is so very difficult to watch your child writhing in pain, full body shaking at the thought of taking a drink of water. I have never wanted anything more than for my son to be free of this pain. As much as I thought I had prepared myself, I had no idea it would be this hard for him.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Maybe this will cheer him up...

Meet Lucy.....

Tomorrow, tomorrow...

Last night, I (finally) told Sean about his know...since it's tomorrow and all! We had a couple of errands to run then we ate a healthy dinner and I told him we had to have a chat before bed. We ran upstairs, got him all snuggly in his jammies, brushed his teeth, grabbed Jellie (his beloved elephant) and snuggled in the rocking chair. I explained about how his doctor (that we had seen earlier in the day) had decided that the only way to make his throat feel better all the time, was to take out the "things he uses the light to look at in your throat". He understood that much! We talked about the hospital, about how he will be asleep and they will take them out and how his throat will hurt when he wakes up but we will give him medicine to make him feel better, how we will be staying there for one night, and that Mummy will be with him the whole time...

How I didn't burst into tears myself is beyond me! He seemed to grasp the concept and told me that he wasn't afraid of the doctor, "just the hospital a little bit". He was so sweet all snuggled up in my lap, curled up with his head on my chest and looking up at me with trusting eyes. He was excited when I told him that I was making some special cupcakes that looked like turkeys so he and his friends at daycare could have a little party before he went to hospital. Sure enough, when we got to daycare he proudly showed off his little turkeys and said "I am going to hospital". I hope he handles it this well tomorrow...

Friday, November 14, 2008

Anthony Edwards and ER

I have not watched ER since they killed off Anthony Edwards character. I cried and cried when that happened. As this is the very last season (I think it's their 724th season...), they are attempting to bring back as many original characters as possible. Last night was Anthony Edwards (along with a group of the older characters to make it more plausible - and wonderful - and nostalgic!). I had to watch to see how they did know, since he was dead and all! It was absolutely brilliant. Seriously. I cried about as much as I did way back when he died. It was a look back to the past involving the current chief, and then chief Edwards. They flipped back and forth between past and present and I couldn't look away! I had intended for it to be background noise while I did other things around the house but ended up mesmerized, teary eyed and in love with Anthony Edwards all over again! If you missed it, I highly recommend checking to see if they have it online - and watch it. Even if you have never watched ER, it was such a powerful episode. It may have something to do with one of the children involved being a 5 year old boy, not much older than Sean, but regardless...excellent. Great job ER writers. You did a brilliant job.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Out of the mouths of babes...

Baby's daddy has developed a habit of lettng Sean watch wildly innappropriate movies...the latest was "Hellboy". Now, I have never seen this movie, but the premise is that he is a 'good monster' who fights the 'bad monsters', at least according to my 3 year old. Doesn't sound too terribly different from most cartoons! However, the said 'bad monsters' have started to invade my son's psyche and he is now convinced that "there is a monster under my bed"..."in my closet"..."in my toybox"...and so on. This has made for a very lengthy bedtime routine.

This morning, Hellboy issue #2 surfaced...
I was tickling Sean while I was trying to get him dressed when he kicked out his leg. I stopped everything and told him that kicking is never ok. To which he replied..."but I just gotta kick your ass".

I didn't know what to do! My first instinct was to laugh my said "ass" off!! Of course being a responsible Mummy (who does not screen wildly innappropriate movies for her 3 year old), I did not laugh (much), and we discussed how this was never going to be something Sean was allowed to say. He seems to understand that it was wrong and that he will be in big trouble if he says it again...his Mummy will kick his ass!!!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Monday, November 3, 2008

I need peace of mind...

My 3 year old baby has been scheduled for surgery. He will be having his tonsils, adenoids, and remaining (ear) tube removed. Simply stated, I am terrified. It was nervewracking enough when he was 11 months old and went in for his tubes, an outpatient surgery; this time it's serious enough that they will be keeping him (and me!) overnight. It has been tentatively scheduled for the day before Thanksgiving...

How do I talk with Sean about it and make him comfortable with the thought of being in hospital and having an operation, when I am so scared? I know that the chance of anything serious happening is slim, I know that it's - generally speaking - a routine surgery, but the thought of my tiny boy (because he is still that tiny boy to me) being put under and operated on makes me sick to my stomach.

I really do like his ear (nose and throat...) doctor, I do. But when he started talking about the surgery, the recovery and how much pain Sean will be in, I wanted to punch him. How dare he do that to my baby!!! The thought of it has dominated my mind all day and, after my initial flood of tears, I have been on the verge of tears ever since it was scheduled. I know that it is a good decision, a necessary decision, but that doesn't make me any less of a nervous wreck.

Monday, October 20, 2008

To infinity and beyond!

Is he not the cutest Buzz Lightyear you have ever seen??????

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Heigh Ho, Heigh Ho...

...It's back to work full time I go...
I have had such fun with Sean over the past 13 months, working part time. I am very sad at having to return to work full time but I take comfort knowing that the bond we share is even stronger having spent that extra time together each and every week. My memories of playgrounds, spraygrounds, museums, parks, movies, festivals, farmer's markets and so much more will always be with me. Now we must take full advantage of our weekends together and make time each evening for special Mummy and Sean bonding. He is growing up so fast and I am very fortunate to have been able to witness so much at such a crucial learning period in his life. He knows that his Mummy loves him and will always be there for him and that's the most important lesson I could have taught him.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Everything I know I learned from Toy Story

As I yanked open the sliding door of the moving truck, a wide-eyed Sean said, amazed..."Mummy! It's just like Woody Buzz!!!"

Monday, September 22, 2008

Oh precious laptop, did you miss me?

Yes! Finally! This evening the internet and cable was restored to the house. It is truly unbelievable how reliant we (I!) have become on the internet. I was completely lost without it! And why no internet for so long? We had the worst windstorm in the history of Dayton, Ohio....and all we got was the remnants of Hurricane Ike! Those poor, poor people in Texas had to live through the brunt of it! Hundreds of thousands of Dayton residents without power from the onset of the storm, tens of thousands without power for over a week...some still don't have it back.

There was astounding wind damage throughout the area, far more severe than in my photos. Our street is a very tree-lined street and it was pure carnage once the wind died down. We were at a classic car show that had to be shut down 3 hours early as tree limbs were falling on the cars (and on the track for the awesome trains Sean and I were riding!). While we were leaving, a large branch fell on some poor unsuspecting guy, breaking his leg! A rather large branch fell about a foot in front of me, large enough that had it fallen on me, it definitely would have knocked me out! We drove past trees that had been uprooted, pulling up the sidewalk with them. Stores that rarely close were closed for days. Major roads and intersections were without traffic lights, some are still out! Scary stuff!

Pretending to be Fangio

Innocently enjoying the trains....

Tree carnage

Not so lucky neighbours...could have been worse I guess!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Vacation '08!

I know we have been back for almost 3 weeks....
It's really late now and I have been working like mad to organize my free photo book from the wonderful Shutterfly (what great timing Shutterfly!! Right after our vacation!), so here are a few pics to tide you over...I know you have been waiting and waiting for vacation pics. These are a few of my very faves.

Fuzzy and blue...all over...

What hat?

Wheeeeee!!!! This is fun Mummy!

Big buddy Bert

All by myself

It is so good to see you again!!!

Sean loved his trip to Sesame Place! We really had so much FUN! The characters were wonderful and so great with Sean. As far as he is concerned the are all now his close and personal buddies! He speaks of them often...

More photos to come (eventually!). No one cares if they are all out of order, right?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Things that make you go hmmm...

As you probably know, I am a HUGE fan of CVS! They pay me to buy things! How could you not love a store like that? The original reason for their existence though, was as a pharmacy. They also give Extra Bucks (effectively CVS cash) for taking your prescriptions there, so I dutifully obliged.

Most recently, Sean needed ear drops as his tubes are on their way out and there was a chance of infection. Drops were prescribed and called in, of course, to CVS. I showed up, paid my $25 (!!!) co-pay, and went merrily on my way. He needed them again this week so once again, I had the prescription called in to CVS. Unfortunately, this was setting up to be a busy week with the vacation looming, so I had them change it to Target as I needed many things from there for our trip. This was also handy as I had a coupon for Target that gave me a $10 gift card with any prescription! Can't beat that!

The pharmacist rang up Sean's prescription, handed me the gift card and said goodbye! I handed her my credit card and she said "Oh, there's no co-pay with that"!!!! Ummm...excuse me? CVS charged me $25 for this very same medicine! She double checked and sure enough, completely free!!! They paid me $10 to have Sean's prescription filled at their store!

Sorry CVS, I love you and all, but apparently being a competitive pharmacy is just not your thing. Thank you Target, I will be back.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A haircut he did need!

Cookie Cutters is the greatest kids hair cut place out there! Sean was, at one time, absolutely TERRIFIED of having his hair cut. Someone, not me, insisted upon taking him to the cheapest place there is. Once they nicked his ear, he always ended up with a less than perfect haircut, and they were not qualified, nor did they have the temperament to deal with kids. His cries of fear made me cry too so I took over the haircutting duties. We went to Cookie Cutters, Sean screamed until he was blue, the wonderful stylist calmed him down and he sat there like an angel while she gave him the cutest haircut he had ever had! We have been back 5 times since then and I will never look back. They are most definitely not the cheapest but some things are worth the splurge! Sean sits in the red airplane, watches Toy story and sits there like the angelic boy he (sometimes!) is and I leave one happy Mummy! They even have a giant slide he can play on while we wait and once he is done!

This is from our visit a week ago....




Sean is always so proud of his haircuts. I heart Cookie Cutters!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

And we sang the songs of peace...

For those of you who are not aware, I was named after a singer from the 70's. My Mum and Dad loved her and I grew up wearing out my 'Candles In The Rain' cassette (Yes, I am that old)! For the longest time, I thought the song 'Ruby Tuesday' was a Melanie original....

Tonight, my BFF Lynn and I sat outside the Fraze Pavillion to listen to the 'Hippiefest' concert which included the one (but not only!) Melanie!! And why did I not buy tickets if I love her so much I hear you ask? Because if I want to take Sean on vacation next month, I couldn't afford the $50 ticket to see her, especially as she was only on for 30 minutes! It was good value for money when you consider that Eric Burdon and the Animals were the headline act, Jack Bruce (of Cream fame) and the Turtles were all there. But still...

So, given that I was outside the pavillion and ACROSS the street (that's as close as they allow you to get), please forgive the fact that you really can't see her at all! Squint as hard as you can and focus in between the trees!! The guy in the orange shirt is her son (he plays guitar for her and opens for her when she tours without the rest of the hippies!). When you can't see her son, I promise that you are looking at Melanie, it's just that she is wearing white and well, her hair is on the white side these days too... The sound turned out quite well though so watch and hopefully you will recognize a song or two - unlike a certain Allman Brothers fan who shall remain nameless ......

She may not look like she did 30+ years ago, but she can still pump out a mighty impressive tune!

Dragons News Story with video

Thursday, July 24, 2008

So much for an innocent baseball game...

If you go to a Minor League baseball game here in Dayton, there are certain things you can expect:
* Hot dogs and Dippin' Dots
* Expensive souvenirs (and that your child will want one of everything!)
* A family oriented affair that everyone can enjoy

Well, they broke tradition tonight with one of the worst brawls in local memory - in the first inning! After a few issues, a frustrated pitcher from Peoria, Illinois threw a pitch toward the Dayton Dragon's dugout, missed, and the ball (at great speed) hit a fan. An enormous brawl started with practically every player from each team involved. It was a terrible display of immaturity and bad sportsmanship, and several fans left in disgust. The rest of us stayed, waiting for the game to be restarted after they figured who was out and who was in. It was uncertain if there was even going to be enough players left to continue the game. OVER AN HOUR later, the game was (finally!!!!) restarted but the crowd was pretty mad and a chorus of boos followed every move Peoria made. We were in the Dragon's Lair which is across the other side of the field from home plate but my photos give you an idea of the chaotic mess...

The brawl, about half way through

More fighting

Reporters outside the stadium as we were leaving

These people are idolozed by the kids in the stands and it is very hard to explain to a three year old why it is not ok to hit, when this is what he witnesses by grown people he respects! According to the news tonight, the pitcher has been charged with felony assault which is a good start. How about a public apology to the kids that were watching?

It would seem that Sean is not easily led though as on the way home he told me "Mummy, when I am on the team I won't fight. I will say "Get out of my way, I have to play baseball". "!!!!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Oh My My!!! It's Ringo Starr!!!!

Please excuse the terrible camerawork....what can I say? It's hard to record using a regular camera while holding a grooving 3 year old!!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Don't go to Mimi's Cafe!

Seriously, don't go. We went for a birthday dinner this evening, a total of around 22 people, including a few kids. There was nothing wrong with the seating, they accommodated us well enough. There was, however, a huge double door at one end of the room (of course, the closest to me) and instead of having nice, sun blocking curtains like every one of the windows in the entire restaurant, it had sheer curtains. Sure they looked pretty, but it didn't help that the entire time we were seated, the sun was glaring down into my eyes and with Sean seated on my left, made it impossible to check on him without shielding my eyes. Yes, it was that bright.

The last time I was there, they brought out a kids nibblies plate without me uttering a word. This time I had to ask for one. My soda was empty for ages before it was refilled. Yes, that's how long the food took - I drink slowly!

Next, the food took forever. Sean and I had a long day (though fun!) and we were both pretty much starving by the time our order was taken. I ordered Sean a kids meal and figured that it went without saying that his would be brought out with the appetizers, as most restaurants do. This was not to be. Amazingly, Sean's was the LAST meal to be brought out - yes, the VERY LAST!!!! They fed the starving three year old last and it was SCALDING HOT! Seriously????? This from a restaurant that I read about as one of the best family oriented restaurants in the country? HA! And, the fruit provided in place of fries was not kid-friendly. How many little kids out there devour honeydew melon and cantaloupe? Not mine. Give him grapes and strawberries any day.

Sean accidentally spilled a little of his milk and the server said she would bring some napkins for us (as the cloth napkins were somehow seemingly water repellent!). A couple of minutes went by with me constantly telling Sean to leave it alone, shielding my eyes from the sun the whole time.... Then another couple of minutes, then another couple....until I finally asked another server to bring some, which she did, instantly, from the cabinet two feet away!!!!!!!!! Grrr!!!

We had to ask for a dessert menu, it was never offered, and since I accidentally ordered a half size meal (did I mention that the menu was not very clear?) I was still rather hungry. She even forgot that Sean had a kids meal - he's not even tall enough for his head to reach the top of the chair back and she forgot he had a kids meal????? - so I had to remind her to bring his dessert.

The food was good. I will give them that much credit. The service however, was an entirely different story. Needless to say, I will not be back.

**Update - I have heard from Mimi's and they were quite apologetic about my experience. They were open to changes and said they will contact me once they feel that they have corrected the issues I wrote about. Will keep you posted!

** August 7th Never heard back from them again...obviously they weren't too concerned after all.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Our fun day out!

A couple of weeks ago Sean and I had such a great, simple day out in Lebanon, Ohio. I read about a farmer's market there earlier in the day and we decided to check it out. Lebanon is about half an hour south of us and we made the trip there not too long ago to see the trains (they are a rarity in Ohio!!). We found the farmer's market and were a little disappointed to see that it was rather small. We shouldn't have been though as we had a great time! There were samples galore and we tried everything from homemade jam on mini tarts to fresh honeycomb! Yum! When we left, Sean said "Mummy, can we come back here? I really like it!"

We had our lunch by the trains, walked up and down the main street (it's a small town!) and stopped to grab some shade under every tree! It was a really hot day but Sean insisted upon wearing his jacket! We danced in the gazebo (who cares who's watching?!?!) and crossed the street to the library to read a few books and rehydrate in the air conditioning.

Before leaving, we checked out the fountain across the street from the library and ate a tiny turtle shaped chocolate at a local chocolate shop. Yummy! The farmer's market starts up near us this week so hopefully it will be as much fun!

Monday, June 30, 2008

Free coffee!

Thanks to Free2BeFrugal, here is a link for free Dunkin' Donuts coffee!
Dunkin' Donuts. Dunkin' keeps me blogging. Try Dunkin' Donuts Coffee For Free. Get a Sample

Cool eh?

Friday, June 20, 2008

Free lightbulbs for you Aussies!

A blog that I read sometimes ( posted a link to an Australian company giving away free energy saver lightbulbs! I ahve already signed you up Mum and Tiff...everyone else should give it a go!

Click on this link and complete your info to receive your free bulbs! Yay!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

My submission was selected!

A couple of months ago I submitted a page for the Quaker Life Cereal "Life's Best Days" online "Book of Life", then promptly forgot about it. Today I received a coupon for a free box of Life cereal and an email saying that my page was accepted! Unfortunately there is no way of linking you directly to my page, but here is the link to the table of contents:

Click on Chapter 7 and it is the fifth page in the chapter - my quote is on the left and Sean is on the right drinking his babyccino at the Melbourne (Australia) airport last August :) How exciting!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Help Children in need "Get Ready To Read"

I have been meaning to write about his for a week or so, but "Noggin" (Nickelodeon's prechool channel) has a fantastic promotion to help provide needy kids with free books! You can click on their link daily and for each click, their sponsors will provide free books to children!

Please click here daily and help children in need:

What is NOGGIN's Get Ready to Read Campaign?

Did you know that only 1 out of every 300 children from low-income families owns a book of their own? Or that there's a proven correlation between the number of books in a child's house and their ability to read and achieve academically? It's amazing that something as simple as a book can make such a big difference. Being the brand that "is like preschool on TV," NOGGIN believes it is important to support and build early literacy skill on our air and online.
What is NOGGIN Doing to Make a Difference?
NOGGIN has committed to generating 1,000,000 NEW books for kids in need. In partnership with First Book, we will use our TV network, our website and outreach to place NEW books into the hands of kids who need them most.

Darling Liam

And now that I have a picture to include, Congratulations to Carl and Liz on the safe and healthy arrival of Liam Ian! My darling new nephew ......

Born June 3rd at 2:45pm (Perth, Western Australia time!) - 7lbs 7oz

Welcome to the world baby boy! Aunty Mel and cousin Sean can not wait to meet you!

A great start to the Summer!

Finally the warm weather is here (with a bang!) and we have had a fun start to the Summer! On Saturday 7th (Happy Birthday Tiffy!), I took Sean to Kettering's annual "Touch A Truck" event. We started going last year and Sean has a great time! The kids get to climb up in trucks and cars from businesses (and city departments like police, fire etc) all over the city, they get to beep the horns, pretend to drive, sound the much fun to watch! This year it was a little rainy but it really didn't make it less fun - just less crowded! Needless to say, Sean had a wonderful time...

When we left the trucks, we went to our local bookstore for a "Corduroy" storytime and craft event. I thought Corduroy was actually going to be there so Sean was a little disappointed but we had fun anyway. He loves the Corduroy stories so enjoyed listening to them. We signed up to be in their Summer Reading Club too so he will earn a few little goodies throughout the Summer.

We had a light lunch then went across the street to Friendly's restaurant for their free ice cream afternoon! No catch, just free ice cream! Sean's was enormous and it dripped EVERYWHERE!!! We ended up swapping cones as mine was significantly smaller, but a good deal of his was thrown in the trash, even I couldn't eat it all! He is quite the ice cream fan so enjoyed his hot afternoon treat.

While we were there, another Mum told us to go back to the mall where the bookstore was as there was a health fair going on inside and they were giving away free bike helmets to kids! We went back to check it out and even though the sign said for kids 4 to 16, they gave Sean one anyway as he is already riding a bike :) He was so proud of his new helmet that he asked to wear it out of the mall!

It was a good day! All for free! Can't beat that!

Tuesday we went to Regal theatres to see the first of many free movies for the Summer! Every Tuesday and Wednesday they are showing two movies completely for free! I guess this is not the first year for it but it wasn't anything I had heard of before! We saw the movie "Doogal" which was actually cuter than I thought it would be. It was a fun little animated movie with the voices of John Stewart, Jimmy Fallon, Chevy Chase, Whoopi Goldberg, and strangely, Kylie Minogue. Sean liked it and considering it was free, what's to complain about??? There are some great ones coming up, including "Night At The Museum" which is one of Sean's favourites, so we will be regulars at these free screenings! Yeah baby!! It's shaping up to be a great Summer!!

Monday, June 9, 2008

My famous boy!

Last Sunday, I opened the paper to find Sean on Page 3!! You can imagine my gasp! He had been at a festival with his Dad the previous day and the one and only photo they printed of the festival was of the two of them! They finally put it online....

31 May 08 Photo by Ron Alvey. Sean, 3yrs old, and his dad, Steve, look at each other's blue tongue as they were sharing a blue Hawaiian Ice treat. They were at the Alpine Heritage Festival, taking place at Carillon Historical Park, in Dayton. The festival included kids games, a climbing wall, food vendors and live music.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

My little bookworm

I have always read to Sean, ever since he was a teeny tiny baby. His favourite books vary, sometimes they change daily! But for the past couple of weeks his absolute fave book has been "Why Do I Have To Eat Off The Floor?" by Chris Hornsey. It's such a cute little book all about Murphy, a dog who doesn't understand why he can't be people! Making it even better is the fact that it was written by a good friend of my Aunty Monica and has been personalized especially for Sean. It was also published in 2005, the year Sean was born. Sean loves to finish each sentence for me and the pictures fascinate him. They are both simple and detailed at the same time.

The book is available through Amazon

Here is a photo of Sean reading his treasured book:

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Target and Walgreens mega deals!

I went to Target last night. I won't go into every single thing BUT, my grand total was $130 and after coupons (manufacturer and Target) I spent only $53 PLUS received $15 worth of gift cards for my trouble! Oh what fun :D

Then, Walgreens was having a killer coupon day for $10 off a $30 dollar purchase. Yay! I bought a few things including a really cool Disney Cars pool for Sean and my total was $35. After my coupons and the $10 coupon, I spent $16. I used my Walgreens gift card from my April rebates to pay for it so really I didn't pay a $11 of the $16 was for rebate items so really I bought all my goodies for $5!! Yeah baby! I never knew coupon shopping could be SOOOOO much fun!!!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Shame on those of you who doubt the sheer awesomeness of CVS!!!!!

So, I have explained my CVS obsession to some people but to others this is probably going to sound like a foreign language.... Read on though as it will knock your socks off!!!

CVS is the greatest place in the universe. It's a broke single mama's Disneyland! The rush you get after spending NO MONEY for LOTS OF STUFF really is comparible to the Tower of Terror!!! Today's trip was an especially fun trip....

ECB = Extra Care Bucks - simply put, you buy something from CVS that has an ECB promotion attached to it and a receipt spits out at the end of your transaction for the amount you earned. It's basically cash to spend on whatever you want.

B1G1 = Buy one get one free

Transaction #1:

Tums Quick Pack 24 count $4.69
Neutrogena Sunless Tan cream $9.99
Lysol Healthy Touch foam $1.99

I used:

$1 off manufacturers coupon for the Lysol
$2 off manufacturers coupon for the Neutrogena
$2.25 off manufacturers coupon for the Tums
$5 off $15 CVS coupon
$5 ECB

Paid $1.89 cash and earned $4.69 back in ECB from the Tums!

Transaction #2:

Tums Quick Pack 24 count $4.69
Neutrogena Sunless Tan foam $9.99
Lysol Healthy Touch foam $1.99

I used:

$1 off manufacturers coupon for the Lysol
$2 off manufacturers coupon for the Neutrogena
$2.25 off manufacturers coupon for the Tums
$5 off $15 CVS coupon
$5.58 ECB

I paid $1.27 cash and earned back $4.69 for the Tums and $5 for buying over $15 of Neutrogena in ECB's...however since the Neutrogena ECB did not print, they gave me $5 cash, and I completed the rest of my purchases with that!

Transaction #3:

Excedrin 24 ct $1.99
Lumene facial exfoliator $9.99
Lumene face mask Free (B1G1)
Kids Tums 36 ct $4.99

I used:

$2 off manufacturers coupon for the Excedrin, making it -0.01!!
$2 CVS coupon for Lumene
$2 CVS coupon for the Lumene
$4 Target coupon for Lumene - our CVS's take competitors coupons now!!!!!!
$5 off $15 CVS coupon

I paid $2.25 in cash (from the $5 given to me for the Neutrogena). No ECB's earned I will be sending in for my FULL REBATE for the kids Tums! $4.99 back for the measly cost of a stamp!

Transaction #4:
6x Sobe Life Water $1 each
Excedrin 24 ct $1.99
Oral-B Cross Action toothbrush $2.99
Lumene face mist $7.99
Lumene eye makeup remover Free (B1G1)
Lysol Healthy Touch foam $1.99 (Sean and I use a LOT of this stuff!)
I used:
3x Buy One Get One coupons for the Sobe water
$1 off manufacturers coupon for the toothbrush
$2 off manufacturers coupon for Excedrin (making it -0.01!)
$2 CVS coupon for Lumene
2x $4 Target coupon for Lumene
$5 off $15 CVS coupon

I paid 87 cents (with my Neutrogena money) and earned back $1 EBC for the toothbrush and $3 ECB for the Sobe waters (it was buy 2 get $1). Plus, I had $1.88 REAL cash left over from the Neutrogena mishap! WOO HOO!!!!!
Isn't that just unbelieveably awesome????? CVS, you are the bomb, baby!!! Jenny, I owe you my sanity for introducing me to this!!!

To learn more about how to CVS, see Money Saving Mom's CVS 101 here:

Just in case you were wondering what the red hammer looking thing is in all the pics, it's , well, a red wooden hammer....Sean insisted that it be in the photos!
And to top it all off, here is a pic of Sean from the playground on Tuesday: