Saturday, August 1, 2009

Favorite Things: Gift Closet Cuties

Smart shoppers, like my dear mom, keep a gift closet stocked with cute things for everyday occassions. After all, how many times have you been invited to a party and rushed out in search of a hostess gift? If you have a gift closet, you can shop at home. In addition to picking up deals in stores as she spots them, my mom loves to get items online from Wisteria and use them when she needs to bring a thank you gift, send a get well token, or even as a thoughtful birthday bauble. You can get six adorable treats from these wooden Derby Critters pictured above. Add a cute gift bag, some grossgrain ribbon, and a personalized note -- and voila! Now that is "cheap and cheerful". [More on building your own gift closet in a future post!]

Friday, July 31, 2009

Cheap and Cheerful August Challenge: Deal Detectives

Cell phone camera? Check. Eye for deals. Check. A few minutes of your time to snap a photo, do a write-up and send it along to Cheap and Cheerful. Check.
Do you have what it takes to be a Cheap and Cheerful Deal Detective?
Spot a deal in a store, snap a photo, and send it our way.
We'll post the deals on the blog and enter you in our contest.
Send your savvy shopping submissions to:
The contest starts tomorrow ..Ready ... set ... go!

Deal of the Day: Jos. A Bank Suit Sale

Everything on the Jos. A. Bank website is 40% - 70% off until Saturday at midnight. Signature Collection suits, which normally sell for $1,295, are only $388.50. Executive Collection shirts are marked down from $59.50 to $37.50. Act quickly; this sale is two days only and items will go quickly. My husband, who is very particular about his clothes, has many suits from Jos. A. Bank that he loves. So you can't go wrong with snagging some suits, shirts, and ties for the best dressed man in your life at this amazing sale.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Favorite Things: Old Navy Retro Graphic Tees

I was at Old Navy yesterday, doing some pre-shopping for the 30% off deal that starts today and goes through Sunday, and found some adorable tees. My son loved the one pictured here and it will be added to his Back-to-School list. (I was excited that he expressed interest in anything that had to do with shopping!) Only $10.50, the shirts also style Batman, Superman, Spiderman and a host of other fun figures. The manager at the store said that while the Stock up and Save Sale ends today that another sale with similar or better deals starts Friday. Pretty nice when the store staff says, "Hey, come back with your coupon on Friday and save even more!"

Cheap and Cheerful Chatter: More Wisdom from Our Readers

* Wendy from Sacramento spotted this $2 off coupon on Boots No. 7 Beauty Serum. This under $25 face cream rivals the department store brands. And it's available at your local Target.

* Elizabeth from Pleasant Hill reminds our readers, "Starting today and ending on August 2nd, 30% off online or in-store at Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, and Athleta."

If you didn't get the printable barcode or online code, leave me a message and I will send you the link. Everyone who gets the code can pass the savings along to up to 25 friends.

* Jody from Gilroy heard this from a friend, "I came across this and thought I'd share. It is the Daily Markdown Schedule at Target. In addition to the odd lot items that may be lurking among the regular merchandise and could be haphazardly stashed at the end caps, Target has a system for marking down their merchandise weekly: Monday - Electronics, Kids Clothing and Stationary (Cards, GiftWrap, etc.) Tuesday - Domestics, Women's Clothing, Pets and Market (food items)Wednesday - Men's Clothing, Toys, Lawn & Garden, Health and Beauty items Thursday - House Wares, Lingerie, Sporting Goods, Shoes, Music / Movies, Books, Decor and Luggage Friday - Auto, Cosmetics, Hardware, and Jewelry."

Cheap and Cheerful wants to know: What good deals have you seen lately?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Cheap and Cheerful Challenge: July Wrap Up

So, as you may recall, single serving snacks were out for the month of July. How did you do? Did you save money? Did you find a new bulk buy that has become a favorite treat? We've been eating lots of watermelon, apples, crackers and peanut butter, and cheese slices at our house. My kids haven't asked for granola bars and fruit leathers in a few weeks so I suppose the experiment was successful for us. But I would love to hear some stories about your experiences. Feel free to post a comment here or to send me an email.
I'm preparing August's challenge now -- Stay tuned!

Favorite Things: Cool Mom Picks

If you are really into all things baby and kids, check out this fresh and fun website: Every week, the site presents online deals for the sandbox set.
Even if you're not looking for your own sticky fingered sweeties, you'll find great prices on gifts and other gear. If you sign up for their weekly email, the deals come right to your inbox. Cheap and cheerful, just the way I like it!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Deal of the Day: Jamba Juice Buy One, Get One

Frozen bliss awaits. Until August 9th, you get a free smoothie with any smoothie purchase at Jamba Juice. Just in time for more of those double digits temps. This may be the sweetest deal in August. I think I'll have a Razzamataz. No, maybe a Cold Buster? Or perhaps a Peach Passion? Hmmm, I might have to try them all. [If you click the image above, it will give you a printable version of the coupon.]

Favorite Things: Brooks Brothers Knot Cuff Links

Wearing a suit everyday shouldn't feel like a chore. Adding a pop of color to your cuffs can change a ho-hum outfit into something more fun. I adore these nylon knot cuff links from Brooks Brothers. At 4 pairs for $20, you can get different colors for various occassions. I know at least one guy who would love the red, white, and blue ones pictured here.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Cheap and Cheerful Chatter: Dinner on a Dime

Our faithful readers have done it again ... I present their tips and tricks on delicious dinners that won't break the bank.

Janine suggested: "My kids and I love to make individual pizzas! I buy Trader Joe's refrigerated pizza dough (I get the whole wheat). I divide them in 4ths, slop on some sauce, add grated cheese and then the kids get to pick their toppings..our favorites are canadian bacon with pineapple, plain cheese, and cheese with pepperoni. I grab one of their salad packs, for a quick and easy side salad. Super yum!"

"Trader Joe's Mandarin Orange Chicken (2 packages for $4.99 each), steamed broccoli and jasmine rice!" was the tasty idea from Julie.

Ali added,"In a baking dish layer fresh, uncooked ravioli (or tortelini), sauteed spinach (sauteed fresh with garlic and olive oil), jarred pasta sauce that's been jazzed up with fresh garlic and Italian seasonings, a cheese mixture of ricotta and grated Parmesan...layer a couple times ending with cheese on top. Bake at about 375-400 until sauce is bubbly and cheese is bubbly and browning....Serve with bread and salad and enjoy!"

And, last but not least, Tracy's meal is as follows: "Here's a cheap under $15 meal for you...1 puff pastry sheet cut into 6 rectangles (the box comes with two), 1 package of ground italian sausage ($1.50). Cook up the sausage and stuff the rectangles, folding edges over to make triangle pockets, wash tops w/ egg. Bake at around 425 for 15 minutes or so. 1 head of romaine ($1 at Farmer's Market) with parmesan I have in the frig and caesar dressing I have. 1 $.95 bunch of broccoli. There's a salad, sausage pockets (we dip in marinara or sweet mustard) and broccoli. Lots of wiggle room in the pocket book for adding your favorite dessert"

Is it dinner time yet?

Deal of the Day: Wii Dance. Do you?

Dance Dance Revolution Hottest Party 2 (with Dance Mat!) is on sale today on Amazon for 50% off! This game will get the whole family movin' and groovin' with all new music. Rock your best moves with your a roomful of your pals for only $34.99. I am totally pathetic at this game -- as my friends and family will attest -- but at this price, even a beginner can get into the action. Who knows? Maybe practice does make perfect.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Favorite Things: The Best Unmentionables Out There

On Gossamer underwear is amazing. And usually totally out of my price range. But with Nordstrom Anniversary sale, it is the perfect time to update my unmentionables. On Gossamer panties are less than $10 per pair and will last for years. Some of my other favorite brands -- DKNY, Natori, and Hanky Panky -- are also offered at a nice discount. Plenty of time to ponder your panty purchases ... the prices are good through August 2nd.


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