Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Year's Resolutions



I know I haven't written a blog in ages, and I figured now was as good time as any to get back into the swing of blogging! I wanted to keep the picture light and upbeat and I just love anything lolcats :)

I have a few New Year's Resolutions, or somewhat of resolutions that I'd like to do and work on in order to help my well-being, health and mentality. Here we go. It's quite a list and I know I won't accomplish it all, but let's see how far I can go:

1. Stop spending money frivolously. DH and I will go to breakfast a lot on the weekends because we're just too lazy in the mornings to make breakfast. Don't get me wrong, the occasional breakfast at Dunkin Donuts and the Diner are great, but not every weekend. Perhaps if i signed up for the Dunkin Rewards thing, I can spend $25 and get a $30 gift card replenished with my AMEX card.....

2. Save every extra penny I can in order to build up our Down Payment Fund. We have been discussing getting out of our condo for over a year now, but when we decided to sell, the market crashed and we didn't get one offer. We tried to sell on our own, which didn't help either. However, I'd like to have 20% saved for a house within 2 years, that's the longest I would like to wait to get a house.

3. Get rid of all the high school drama going on. Recently, I found out some stuff about people (good friends supposedly) that I thought I could trust and it really made me step back and look at everything. It sucks having a safety net of sorts ripped out from under you. People you trusted with everything, secrets, everything, is now not who you thought they were. Those people who I can no longer go to when something happens when I need a friend to confide in. Which stinks b/c I have a lot of male friends, but my one co-worker here says I need more girlfriends to talk to, but that's my issue....trust. So far, I have not really had that girlfriend(s) that I can go to and trust completely.

4. Exercise more frequently. I know this is probably on everyone's, but I keep starting to exercise for like a week, and I'm really gung ho, then something comes up and I don't have the time, or energy or both. I need to FIND the time to do something each day, whether I like it or not.

5. Eat healthy. This also ties in to #1. If I cook more at home, then I'll most likely be eating healthier. I need to incorporate a ton more veggies and fruits into my diet and less chocolate and junk food.

6. Organize recipes and make up weekly mean plans. Another great idea, but just lacked the motivation and time for this. I have a TON of cooking shows in my DVR to watch. I printed out a ton of recipes from Food Network and put them in my binders. I have a few episodes to watch and print out recipes for, then to add to my binders. What I'd 'like' to do is go find a recipe (dated of course) and then go to the DVR and watch how they did, then make it. Sounds like a great plan, just never put it into action yet.

7. Level up to the Black Card Level at Borgata. Okay, I know a lot of you disagree with my gambling, but it's all DH and I do. We don't go to clubs or bars or anything and we make the occasional trip (yes, occasional as of late) to AC. I've been off my poker game, so we are going to play some Blackjack and see what happens. DH's uncle has a black card and can make about $70 comp a night....$1000 comp dollars earned over the course of 12 months will net me a black card. This is NOT one of my top resolutions, but I'd like to up my play a bit and see where it leads me.

8. Find a new job. Mine is relocating and DH cannot move to Maryland, so I have to find another job. I've been putting in for a ton around here, but nothing just yet. I actually did get referred for one, but I wasn't one of the first 50 to apply so I didn't make the first round just yet, so I'm still waiting.

9. Plan for baby. 2010 may be the year of a Baby Russo. We have been talking about it for awhile now. We know the timing will never be right, but we have all of our consumer debt (minus student loans) paid off. We are taking all the extra money that we were putting towards debt into saving for a house (about 3 weeks so far) I would rather be in a house then have a baby, but I would be happy to have a healthy baby and we can always use the 2nd bedroom as a baby room (not a storage room).

10. Clean and organize the house. This is key if we want to sell! We got an email on Christmas Day from someone asking about our condo. Apparently, it's still on the website I listed it at well over a year ago, so that's good I guess. Didn't hear anything back from him, but I'd like to be one of those wives that has the house clean all the time so if a guest comes over, I'm not running around to clean up to let them in the house.

Okay, I think 10 is enough for now. What are all you resolving to do this new year?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

It's OFFICIAL!



DH and I are OFFICIALLY OUT of credit card debt! I wanted to post it first on my blog, then on the WIRR. We started 'tracking' and 'paying' down debt almost 2 years ago, a few months into our marriage. Once I started with the WIRR, we have been very frugal and cut down our debt significantly, but we still enjoy going out to AC and hanging out with our friends. We just choose to do it on the cheap, and not spend $9 on a bottle of beer like most friends!

So this past weekend, with DH's 'overage' in his paycheck based on our budget, we paid off our last credit card! It felt so great to type in the amount and 'confirm' the payment. Normally, that credit card takes a few days to post to the account online, but I checked yesterday, and there it was....a BIG FAT GOOSE EGG!

In December of 2007, I started the WIRR with over $45k in debt (credit cards, DH's truck, my student loans, etc) and right now, we are at just over 14k, which is all my student loans. All our consumer debt is paid off! Our credit card debt we started with in Dec of 07 was about 14k. However, right after we got married in July 2007, we paid off a TON of credit cards (Home Depot, Best Buy, etc), so we had more CC debt right before I started my race.

I'm so happy and I feel like a HUGE weight has been taken off our shoulders. The only 'debt' we have right now is my student loans, which is next on my snowball list, and then our condo. We are very careful about where each dollar goes and we're putting money away each week and it feels great to be so proactive with our money.

I will be cutting up just about all of our credit cards. I do have some things on there, like magazine subscriptions, which I will either cancel or have them direct bill me. We are also opening a credit card account at our community bank and not giving money to the morons at Capital One, etc. We will only use that bank CC for online purchases, booking hotels, EZPass, etc, but will be paid off each month, so no balance will be on there.

How is everyone's race going?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

I am Getting SO Sick and Tired of Dealing with Incompetent People!


I'm at my boiling point, I really am. In the past few weeks, I have had to deal with some very incompetent people and I figured I'd share my rant with you, because I'm sure some or all of you may have encountered the same thing.

It started off a few weeks ago when DH got a postcard in the mail for free golf balls, he just had to pay for shipping. This probably came from the 'free' subscription he got to Golf Digest for me buying him that Tiger Woods Wii golf game. When you fill out the stuff online, they say they DON'T sell their name to other companies, yadda yadda yadda. So, he gets this postcard from Warrior Custom Golf for 3 dozen free golf balls. So he's like 'Should I call?" I tell him he can do what he wants. So he calls and he's on the phone for about 2 minutes when I hear him shell out his credit card number. He gets the 'look' from me because I hate when he does that sort of thing. The guy hardly even gave him the 'sales pitch' before he gave out his CC number. So I'm listening to DH's side of the conversation. They start talking about his golf game, how much he goes golfing, etc. Then I hear him say 'Um, no, just the golf balls please. I don't need a new set of clubs since my wife just bought me a new set' (which I did a few months back...a good set too). So, I hear him again, "No thanks, just wanted the promotion I got in the mail about the free balls." Then the phone went dead....or so he thought. He starts complaining that our phones stink (okay they are a little old, and phones in our condo are horrible b/c of the reception and lines in our area, no matter what type of landphone we get, it's always the same). So I run into the spare room where we have a corded phone and pick it up, dial tone. Hmmmmm. My mind starts racing and I ask him what the guy was talking about. DH said that he was trying to sell him golf clubs for a few hundred bucks, etc. Great...phone goes dead, these people have our CC number and DH was trying to tell the guy to just send the darn balls! I tell him to call them back and cancel everything. I go online and do some research, and it's all shady. So many people have had issues and a few cited that in the middle of the 'sales pitch' the phone mysteriously 'goes dead' I'm majorly freaking out, he calls and cancels. I decide to call Capital One to notify them and see if I can get a block on this company from charging my account. I'm not asking for a million bucks, just one company not able to charge anything to my account. I'm told that I would have to restrict the entire account so NOBODY could charge on the account, so I said "No, don't do that because I have a few places that automatically bill my credit card (EZPass, etc)" So the man says okay. All I ask is that he puts a note on my account about this business.

A week later, I get home from work and get something in the mail from Capital One. I immediately open it up in the parking lot and it's a letter that says that we restricted our account and to call this number to take the restriction off when we want too. Are you kidding me? I told them NOT to restrict/block it b/c of my EZPASS! And I know the EZPass was going to hit that week b/c it needed it's replenishment. I immediately call up and I explain the situation. I just HATE when I'm angry/upset for good reason and they do the 'I understand your frustration, BUT...' UGH! So I'm on the phone and I explain to the person that I specifically said to NOT restrict the account, and they did, and notify me a WEEK later that we did. I ask her to take the restriction off immediately since now I'm guessing EZPass is not getting their money. She explains to me that the primary accountholder has to do that. WHAT?! Are you kidding me? DH is a truck driver, he can't just wait and sit on hold for about 10 minutes as I did to talk to someone! She explains that ONLY the primary can put a hold or take a hold off, or change the account, etc. Funny, because when I had my money stolen from my purse at the Water Club in January, I was the one that called and had the account closed and a new card issued with a new number. I was also the one that called the prior week about blocking the company. So here it was that I wasn't able to do anything, yet I did twice and never had an issue. Now, THEY make a mistake and I can't do anything? Not acceptable. I ask to speak to a supervisor, get one and they can't do anything...the 'system' won't let them. Are you for real? Push a darn button saying that you're speaking to the primary and do it! So I argue with her, then she says she will place me on hold and try to contact the primary account holder. As she does that, I take my home phone and call DH and tell him not to answer his cell if someone calls. We hang up. I'm on hold for another 10 minutes, and I put my cell phone down on the table and i accidentally hit the 'end' button...URGH! I call DH and lo and behold, the NEVER called him...but they kept me on hold for 10 minutes? NOT ACCEPTABLE! I am now in the midst of following Suze Orman's advice and opening up a CC at our credit union. (Note: DH called them and took off the restriction....yea, great customer service CapitalOne!)

So, yesterday I'm at work talking to a co-worker about All You magazine and she says that her subscription took awhile to start as well (I've been waiting oh so patiently for mine :) I go online to Capital One to see when I did the order for it, and I see that Warrior Custom Golf billed us last week for $23! OMG! So I call DH and tell him I'm about to go all Carrie Heffernan on this place. I get on the phone with a young woman and tell her the situation in a matter of fact tone. She says that the balls shipped out on the 14th (DH did the call with them on 10/3). Um, yea, whatever. DH called in the same hour that he placed it and cancelled it, and he was told that it was never processed since the call got dropped and he called right back. The original person he spoke with hadn't put it in the system yet. So he was 'assured' that no order would go through. So a week and half later, balls get shipped to us. The lady says 'Oh, that's okay, when you get the balls, just refuse them and when we get them back here, we'll credit your account' NO I say. First off, they NEVER should have been shipped out to begin with, that was an error on YOUR end, NOT mine. AND, whose to say you'll ever credit my account? I've dealt with that before, and lo and behold, the company never gets the item back, eventhough I've sent it back and TRACKED it back to their warehouse! Companies are shady! I demand that my money gets credited immedately and she says no, they can't do that. I then tell her it's THEIR mistake, not mine and THEY need to make it right. She places me on hold, speaks to her supervisor and says that they will credit the account immediately and that they will try to re-route the balls back to them, but if I get them, to please refuse them so they will get them back. So they sent it on Wednesday, and by Monday, no balls. So if I were to wait for the balls to get to my house, then wait for it to go all the way back to California, then wait for them to credit my account, it'd be Christmas time! Um, no. I also sent an email to them that I would like in writing that they will be crediting my account. I also called CapitalOne to see if it showed that there was a credit done, but they said that would take a few days to show. Figures.

Then, I go to Wal-Mart after work to get my All You Magazine....just that magazine. Right in the front by the express checkout. Sweet! I get in line behind someone, who decided to do her weekly grocery shopping and check out in the 12 items or less line. I look around, all the other express lanes had about 5 people deep, and the regular lines were out in the walkway. 'Sigh' The lady is taking so much stuff out her cart, and I felt like the cashier didn't do her job correctly because she should have said 'This is an express checkout' So, the woman kept looking at me and I had to bite my tongue after all this stuff I went through with the darn golf balls yesterday. So, everytime she made eye contact I would just look up at the '12 items or less sign' and arch my eyebrow. I had to wait about 5 minutes just to ring up a magazine...geesh!

So, have any of YOU experienced and headaches like this recently?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

September Totals

I haven't been out hounding a lot lately since I have a ton of stuff on hand, so I go when we need something or I think it's a good deal. Here's my September totals:

Number of items: 91
Total before savings: $397.99
Store Savings: $167.28
Coupons: $75.54
Number of Q's: 51
OOP: $159.3
Total Savings: $238.69 or 60%

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Borgata Ladies Event 9/12/09



On Saturday, Sept 12, Hubby Mike and myself got up nice and early and made our trek down the Garden State Parkway for the Ladies Event at Borgata. Hubby Mike has been trying to convince me to stay away those events, but I keep on playing them. I guess it's the cheap buy-in and the not so smelly players that
get me :)

As I mentioned earlier, when I was in line, I got to speak to Will 'The Thrill' Failla. Wonder why they call him 'The Thrill?" Anyways, I get seated at what seems to be a good table. A woman that I swear looked like Rodeo from Rock of Love was at the other end of my table, and a woman I have played with a few times was also down at the other end. I was in seat 9, and seat 10 came very late. To my right, seats 7 and 8 did not shut up the ENTIRE time. I'm not kidding. I'm a talker, I can out-talk anyone, but not these two girls. One was an older woman, the other (next to me) was probably a few years younger then me.

I didn't get involved in too many pots early on, I wanted to get a read from the players first. It was quite hard to listen to people as the girls on my right chit chatted the entire time. The girl on my right ticked me off a few times. Because of all the yapping away, she wasn't paying attention and 2 times she took my card and shuffled with hers, so then we didn't know which one was mine. another time, she took the girl to her right's card so it was a mis deal (idiot) and I had ace queen too. At that point I was short stacked as a big hand I was in she sucked out on me big time. She got involved in a big hand with another woman and that woman played an ace high all the way to river, and called the girl on a bluff. So the girl to my right lost a huge hand with king high, complaining she couldn't get the other person off the hand.

So, right before the first break, I'm in the big blind with pocket 7s...everyone folds, and she called the small blind. I raise it up (a little more then 3x the blind) and she's like 'Okay I call' Damn, just fold! It's break time I'm thinking and I gotta pee! So, the board was 8 high, she checks, I bet out, she calls. Ugh. Turn, another high card, now a flush draw is out there, she checks, I bet. River comes and she bets out big. I fold and she shows the nut flush (ace three of clubs). Okay, you just basically ream this girl out over there for calling with nothing, WTF are you doing chasing a runner runner on the flop? ugh...whatever. So I'm ticked off, go on break and vent to Hubby Mike. When I return, I put my IPOD in LOUD so I can tune out the girls to my right. The girl on my left had come and she sat with her fingers over her ears b/c they did not shut up.

One of the funniest things happened too. Since it was a ladies event and the Borgata can care less about us, all the worst dealers were dealing our event. I think they went out onto the boardwalk and asked the homeless people if they wanted a job for a few days and gave them dealer jobs for the event. The dealers were asking ME how to deal...the girl to my left was taking a walk and she was like 'Do I deal to her even though she's not here?" HELLO! Poker dealing 101! Okay so back to the funniest thing. The dealer deals out the cards (after taking 5 minutes to shuffle, no lie) and the girl to my right asks the girl to her right to give her change for a large chip. This is happening as the dealer started dealing. She's the small I'm the big. Well, she never grabbed her cards b/c she was too busy fiddling with her chips, so the dealer just grabs them, puts them into the muck, then the girl my left mucks and the girl to my right is like 'HEY, where's my cards!' Ugh, I think. Here we go! The dealer was like 'Oh I thought you folded' She's like 'No, I'm the small blind, and the action isn't even on me yet!' So now there's 4 cards in the muck. The girl to my left is like, if you want, I can look at the cards and tell you what my two were, then you can tell what hers were. Normally, the dealer should be calling for the floor...nope. So she takes the four cards, hands them to the girl to my left, FACE up, so I can see two of the cards, as can the girl next to me! Wow, so now the girl to my left is yelling 'MISDEAL MISDEAL' and me, being the smart alek that I am is like 'It's not a mis-deal' and she's like 'Yes it is!' I tell her 'no, a mis-deal is just that....a mis-deal...she didn't mess up dealing the hand, you were too busy messing w/ your chips. You have to protect your cards at all times...you hand is dead.' she did NOT like that. So the floor comes over and she was so taken aback at what the dealer did. so, as she is starting to explain to the girl that it's not a mis-deal, but her hand is dead, I look at the dealer and she starts to WASH THE CARDS! I look at my cards, nothing, and I know it's a dead hand for everyone.

I'm down to like 2600 in chips a little while later and I'm just thinking it's not my day. Oh well. Can't win em all! I get ace king and push all in, and I more then double up and I have about 7800. I then get to a little over 11k when my table gets broken up. (I won't go into the fight about the guy, it's been talked about way too much already). I get to a fairly decent table and I get a few good hands, make raises and steal some blinds/antes. I got to about 19k right before dinner. After dinner was all downhill for me. Blinds are up as are antes. I get pocket 10s in early position and raise to 6k. Girl on the other side of the table goes all in for 5600, so I get some money back. We flip up our cards, she has queen 8 off....what the? Queen on the flop, eight on the river. Of course, now I'm short stacked and a little peeved off. I worked my tail off to get to the chips I had and this girl just takes them? UGH. I'm right next to the rail, so Hubby Mike is right there.
I turn around, and he's over watching Lacey Jones' table, so I yell for him to come see what just happened. The girl gets ticked off that I'm talking about her, and she's like "The blinds are too big, I couldn't afford the blinds when they get around to me' Um, the blinds are 800 1600, you had more then enough...but whatever. Told her it's her cards, etc. it's just that I never get that lucky.
so a few hands later, I'm in the big blind, everybody folds to the small blind. Her and I were getting along great, talking, etc. She's like, 'how much you got left?" and I'm like '5500' She's like I'm all in, I insta-call with ace 8 of diamonds. She's like 'oh you definately got me on this, easy double up for you' She has 4 6 off. WHAT THE? I look at Hubby Mike and he gives me a look. Low cards on the flop, paint on the turn....Im thinking BIG...4 on the river and I'm out. What just happened is what is going through my mind...I grab my stuff and storm out...I got freaking steamrolled after busting my hump for 9 hours and NOTHING. Wow....why can't I get lucky when I go all in with the crappiest hand and suck out? Both times, got my money in with the best hand and lost. It's a really bad feeling. Then to top it all off, a guy wins the event.....lovely. I knew it wasn't my day!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Online Cooking Class Giveaway!




No, I am not giving a cooking class ( I can picture it now...the blind leading the blind!), however $5 Dinners is! Go take a look and see if you think you may need it....or just check it out and come back and tell ME that I definately need it hahaha!

This seems like a great way for people to learn how to cook and to save money by doing so!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

August Grocery Savings!


What what a GREAT month it's been for me and grocery shopping! Thanks to ACME, I was able to keep rolling and rolling and still rolling CATS! I did awesome this month, way above my goal which is a good thing, but I don't think ACME and the other stores can continue on with all their CAT deals...or can they? Here's my numbers:

Number of items: 157
Total before savings: $744.64
Store Savings: $320.51
Coupons: $259.45
Number of Q's: 110
OOP: $174.00
Total Savings: $570.64 or 77%!!!

I think for September I will aim for 64%! I hope I can get some awesome CAT deals again!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

2 GREAT Hounding Days: 8/5 at Shop Rite and 8/6 at ACME



This was my Shop Rite trip on Wednesday. I got all the ground beef 50% off the ALREADY sale prices (80% was 1.00 a pound!!!). DH was very happy because as we walked past the meats, he was like 'No ground beef?' I said, 'No, it's on sale, but not rock bottom, maybe next week.' A few minutes later, the guy came on the PA 'Right now in the meat dept, all ground beef is 50% the sales prices' So off we went!
I got a CAT for buying 5 Kimberly Clark items (Viva, Cottonelle) so that was good. The grapes were on sale for .99/lb and they are a great snack item while I busy at work. I got the OJ for FREE because I had a FREE coupon as were the International Delights (printable coupon). The Giants grocery bags were also free from a previous CAT deal and the Aquafresh was .19 each after sale and coupon. All in all, my original total before savings was 110.95 and I paid OOP 33.64 for a savings of 70%!




This was my first transacation at ACME. I was on lunch with two co-workers, so I ran in with them, took my friend's keys, got my stuff, checked out and put it in the truck...came back in to do my 2nd transactions. The two of them hadn't even put an item in their cart yet...I was that quick! These were $1 a piece on sale, and this wa included in the Buty $30 of GM etc get a $15 CAT. So OOP was $12 and I got back $15 in CATS...$3 moneymaker!





This was my second transaction during lunchtime. I did make the boo boo that I should have gotten ONLY the HN Cheerios and the Cinn Toast Crunch as they were the ones on the buy $30 get $15 CAT deal (DH doesn't like Kix). So I got those, some Cookie Crisp, Trix and Strawberry Chex. When I got up to pay, I gave my Qs and my CATS and wound up paying 7.50 OOP and only getting $15 in CATS. When I got back to work and figured out shelf prices, I figured that maybe I can only get $15 in CATS in one transaction...then realized my boo boo by buying the ones NOT in the CAT deal...all well...still got 14 boxes of cereal for only 7.50 and getting $15 in CATS!




Back at work, my one co-worker didn't get her $30 CAT and she did go up to the customer service desk and they weren't really helpful and my co-worker screamed at me 'I'm not going shopping with you no more!' I thought she was serious then she started laughing. PHEW! At work, I realized that some of her items were not on that list and one of them she got the wrong one (she got Stewart's instead of IBC) so she wanted to go back after work....told her not to twist my arm so much :) So, we worked some OT together (so quiet after everyone else leaves!) and we went to ACME after work. This was my 3rd transaction of the day. I got a bunch of misc items that we needed anyways and I made it so it was all included in the CAT deal. All in all for this one, I paid 2.36 OOP and used $10 in cats (total came to $12 and change, didn't want to waste another $5 CAT) so I got to save a $5 CAT for next time, AND got $15 more! YIPPEE!





I went to my car (which I had already filled up my trunk during lunch) and now I had to put the bags in the backseat. I went back in to get more cereal. I got 7 more boxes (21 total for the day) and got ONLY the HN Cheerios and the Cinn Toast Crunch. I only no coupons (darn!) but I did get a CAT for the Skippy PBJ I think for $1. The total came to $13 so I used $10 in CATS, plus a $1 CAT. So I paid $2 OOP and got back $15 more CATS. So...now I have $25 CATS to use! YIPPEE!


I made a joke to DH b/c at SR, he complained about no ground beef, and the gods spoke to us and gave us 50% off. That night, he said we don't have much cereal left, then I stumble across this ACME deal on Hounding with Frugalsuz (she's got some AWESOME deals!). Wonder what DH wants next......

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

July Grocery Savings



I'm a few days late with my July totals, but here they are...enjoy!!! I aimed for 60% again...did I did it? Did I? Did I? Read on!

Number of items: 173
Total before savings: $540.30
Store Savings: $267.88
Coupons: $97.82
Number of Q's: 70
OOP: $180.93
Total Savings: $359.37 or 67%!!!

Yuppers! I did it! I exceeded my goal, AGAIN! I'm going to up my goal for August to 61%! I had help in July with A & P doing triples...not sure if they're going to do it again, but I sure hope they do! Wish me luck!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Shop Rite 7/29/09

I had a GREAT run with DH to Shop Rite! Eventhough as soon as we pulled into the parking spot, it downpoured.....I still made out like a bandit!!! Check it out!



I got ALL this for 18.99 OOP (out of pocket) and used the sales along with coupons to get out of there so cheap! Before store savings and Qs, the OOP was $106.21! I also got back a $5 CAT OYNO (on your next order) and a $3 CAT. I also got 2 coupons for FREE re-usable bags to be earth friendly! YIPPEE! Can you spot all the deals???

Paw It Foward



Hello, my name is Lucky and I'm Grocery Hound and Poker Chick's daughter. When I first met mommy and daddy, they were so nice to me! They fed me tons of good food every day and always left me water to drink. I figured I'd give them a shot and I adopted them. They think that they control me, but we all know who is the boss around here...ME!

Mommy is too busy to put up the blog, so I figured I'd give this 'blogging' thing a shot. I wanted to give a big THANK YOU to Shelly at The Life I live for the package I got in the mail last month. I haven't yet had my mail changed from outside to inside, so I haven't gotten all my mail....but I did get this!



This was me checking out the box and rubbing it on it.



C'mon mom, I can't get it open by myself!



Hmmmm, this isn't the dead mice I ordered....but it'll do! OH, is that a cat I smell?????



I LOVE my new box!



That's me scoping out the goods.



I know I know....I'm lazy, just like mommy. I need a break after all this excitement!



Nobody is fooling me....these aren't REAL mice!



Ok, now here come's the fun part! Mommy said for me to just copy exactly what Shelly wrote from The Live I Live said so I wouldn't make any mistakes on how to play this game. Now I sure don't want to make a mistake on mom's blog........she'd never let me on the computer again! So here's Shelly!

"This was all a part of Paw it Forward. It is now our turn to have fun pawing it forward to the next cat or dog blogger.

The guide to Paw it Forward is as follows: "The exchange focuses on doing an act of kindness without expecting anything in return other than that the recipient will, in their turn, pass the kindness along and 'pay it forward' in their own way.This is how it works...I am going to agree to send something fun, inspiring or uplifting to the first blog owner who posts a comment on this entry if you agree to paw it forward too. In turn you will then post about this on your blog, link to me, then send something to the first person who signs up to play along through your blog. There are no cost restraints, BUT don't go crazy! The little something you send can be something you made, bought, were given or found. No biggie, just a gift that will make the person smile. Maybe something unique from where you live? And, remember that kindness does not have to involve money; there are untold ways to help others every single day, everywhere you go - just look around". The rules were changed a little bit. We know that times are tough for a lot of people, and in the past the idea was to paw it forward to 3 bloggers. We are going to paw it forward to one and doing this might make it more playable for people. If you want to play with three people, it is your choice, or if you'd like to play with one or two people, that is also your choice. Keep the fun going and let me know if you want to play!"

Snowball: If you want to play, just be the first to leave us a comment saying so! We loved playing so much we already picked out some new toys to paw forward. Thanks for reading!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Happy 2nd Wedding Anniversary to Me (and DH)!

So, Tuesday marked mine and DH's 2nd wedding anniversary! Last year, we took a few days off of work and went down to AC to celebrate. This year, I wanted to keep with the AC theme and go again for a few days. We got engaged in AC, honeymooned in AC, and spent our 1st and 2nd Wedding anniversaries there, so I guess AC holds a special place in our hearts (and our wallets lol).

On Sunday, we went to Brigantine Beach (right over the bridge from AC). We got there around 10 and sunbathed for about two hours. We left around noon and looked around the island, it's beautiful! Some multimillion dollar homes had open houses, but DH was a party pooper so we didn't get to go inside. We went to Borgata and checked into the hotel, then hit the gift shop for the clearance rack (DH's idea! I'm rubbing off on him!). Didn't see anything we liked, so we went to the room to shower up. We met up with some friends at Trump Plaza's beach bar. It was pretty nice there...a lot of 80's music...right up my alley! When we went back to Borgata, we grabbed a bite to eat then hit the poker table for the rest of the night.

We woke up late on Monday since we went to bed late on Sunday night. We went to go to Bread and Butter for breakfast (it's soooo yummy there!) but the line was way too long, so we went to the Metropolitan (diner type). After that, we went up to the room to shower then off to get me on a helicopter! We headed to Taj and went to Steel Pier, but it was closed, opened at 3pm. It was about 2pm, so we hit the 3 card table for an hour....we won some money so that's a plus! We went to the pier, and the helicopter ride wasn't open yet, they said about 45 minutes. We went to Resorts so I can play a slot machine (last time I hadn't been there in awhile and I played a penny slot, 2 weeks later I got TONS of comp rooms, so I figured I'd try that again). We then walked around then headed to the helicopter ride....I LOVED it! I can't believe I got on, but I did...next stop, airplane!


This was us before the ride, with our 'son' Clifford. DH won him for me at the basketball game on the boardwalk :)



DH and I on the helicopter...it was really windy!!!


The view of Brigantine Beach from the helicopter.


Us on the escalator at Taj.



Checkout day:(


We then went to the Shore Mall since DH has been bugging me to get a Blackberry and I gave in....however, no Verizon store in the mall. We went back to the Borgata and ate at Noodles of the World (NOW). It was GREAT! Then we played some cards for awhile and were up in the room around 9:30pm, so it was an early night for us.

I was up early since I conked out early the night before so we um, celebrated our anniversary then laid in bed then got up to shower and check out. I hate check out day. We went to Bread and Butter again, another huge line. We weren't that hungry so that worked. We went to the Let It Ride table and sat with 3 older ladies, they were so fun! I ended up hitting a straight flush in my 3 cards, so that helped! We then played some poker (not a happy ending) then headed home early. We tried to go to a fancy place for dinner, but the kitchen was closed, so we went to the Outback...YUMMY! I got a Wallaby Darned, it was so yummy!


Me and my Wallaby Darned and DH with his strawberry margarita.


In the past two years, my DH has made my life complete. There have been times where he has worked my last nerve, but in the end, it's all worthwhile. I have grown and learned so much from him, and I'm sure he's grown and learned a lot from me. We had a great wedding 2 years ago and now that the newlywed stage is over, it's time hunker down and think about raising a family. It will take some time for that since we have a few vacas planned and he's planning a huge 30th bday blowout for me next year, so we'll see what happens.....

30 Day Shred with Jillian Michaels Giveaway!




I know I need to start getting into some shape (round is no longer a shape!) and I'm getting some motivation from Coupon Geek this week! She is doing a giveaway here for 30 Day Shred with Jillian Michaels! Click on the link to check it out!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

I LOVE TRIPLES!



Here's what I got at A & P today. Lucky sure is one lucky kitty! Here's the breakdown of what I did.

Transaction 1:
Viva Paper Towels: .04
Newman's Own Dressing (4): FREE!
Aunt Jemima Syrup (2): 1.49

Transaction 2:
Viva Paper Towels: .04
Whiskas All Natural Temptations (4): .24

Transaction 3:
Whiskas All Natural Temptations: .24

All in all, I spent $6.16 OOP, which isn't too bad for all that stuff! Lucky was excited when I came home with MORE of her treats. She came to me underweight, and I'll do anything to get her weight up to normal!

Monday, July 13, 2009

A & P and Shop Rite



Shop Rite 7/12/09
Here's some of the stuff I got and how much I paid:

Purina One Cat food: 1.99
GM Cereal: 3 each for 1.55
Pop Secret Popcorn: 1.00 each
Quaker Chewy Granola Bars: 1.49
Quaker Quakes: FREE!
Manwich: .67 got 3
McCormick Grinders: 3 for .99 each
Bread: .99
Wonder Rolls: 2 for .99 each
Lettuce: 1.69
Pears: 1.74
Bananas: 1.96
Cherries: 1.49 a pound
Minute Maid Cherry Limeade: 1.67
Lactaid Milk: 5.59

Total OOP was 34.03 and I saved 55.46 or 62% Not too shabby!

A & P 7/13/09

They are doing triples this week. I went last night with DH but what I wanted was OOS. I tried on lunch today at the one by my house and all the stuff I wanted, they didn't have. So here's what I got:
Newman's Own Salad Dressing: FREE after Q! (NO overage....they must be on to us hounds!)
2 ears of corn .80

Total oop was .80 for 72% savings.

I'm going to go for an 'early' lunch tomorrow to see if they are stocked. If not, I will come into work late Wednesday or Thursday and get there when they first open. I have comp time to use before I lose it, so may as well hound!

Want to know how I saved so much and paid so little? Sign up for one of my coupon classes! Ask me how!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

My first 'issue' with a cashier while couponing...



That was me this afternoon after work when I tried to do the right thing. I went to A & P on lunch to get some treats for Lucky. They are on sale for $1.09 and I have a ton of Qs for $.50 off (doubled is $1.00 off), which makes them $.09 each. I got 4 since I think they double up to 4 of one item (like at shop rite). So, on lunch I did self checkout, and the coupon didn't ring up. Uh-oh, so my light blinks and the guy starts walking over. Crap! I thought the Q was okay and matched the product. So I checked again, Yes, any Temptation, Yes, it's the 3 oz. package, it's all good. So the guy looks at it, compares them, and manually puts them in. I thanked him, and he was off. Total OOP was .67 with tax.

I went back after work and decided instead of doing self-checkout and making the poor boy do it again (he was there, I saw him) I went right to a cashier, that way they can just enter it in, 1, 2, 3. So I get up there (after the girl in front of me cut me off getting in line, the proceeds to pay her bill in change, whatever!). I put my stuff down, give her my card and go to give her my Q's. She's like 'Your total is (whatever it was) and I'm like 'Here you go, I have these coupons.' ( I had them out the entire time, waiting for her to take them). She goes to scan one and it beeps. She looks at the coupon, then tries again, beeps again. She's like 'You can't use these coupons.' And I'm like 'Oh?" (I was very nice and polite). She's like 'You can only use it on 1, so you can't use them all" And I'm like 'Can you read what the Q says?" The lady in back of me huffs and puffs. She's like 'Well, the computer isn't reading it, so you can't use it.' I ask again what the coupon says and she says that it's good for only one. I say "yes, I know that, that's why I have 4 pouches and 4 coupons.' She goes again to tell me 'well, the computer won't take it, so you can't use it.' I told her i used them earlier' and as I was about to continue to say that the guy had to enter it in, she walks away...to talk to a manager. Thanks for the 'Be right back, I need to check with my manager.' A girl, probably just out of high school comes back over and is like 'Oh, you just have to type it in, that's all' So she does that, then the original girl comes back, gives me my total. I give her the money, she gives me the change. She says 'Have a nice day' as she's taking the next customer! I said 'THANKS' really loud but nice, not sarcastic and told her to have a nice evening. Man, some people just DON'T like others using coupons!

Forget Disney, I'm going to the World Series of Poker!



Okay so that's a lie, but it's what I feel! Being a poker player, my goal is to one day play in the World Series of Poker (WSOP). Why? Because that is what every poker player's goal is, to play in poker's biggest event, ever. There are so many people that come out all over world to play in the WSOP out in Vegas. My bankroll doesn't support me putting up a smooth 10k to play in one tournament. Even if I did have a significant poker bankroll, I still can't see myself dropping 10k for one tournament. My plan is to get out to Vegas and try to satellite myself in to the big one. For those not familiar with poker terms, a satellite is a great thing for those that want to play bigger tournaments, but just don't have the cash to put down for it. You play a satellite tournament for significantly less money and try to beat out the field to get a voucher to the bigger tournament. There are satellites online, but with all the laws about/against online gambling, I don't play online anymore, I haven't played online in years.

I have played a few satellites at the Borgata in the past, but when the satellite prices are low (about $100 buy in), I notice the play is at that $100 level. However, for a larger buy in ($300-$500) the play is significantly better and more my speed. I tried to get away from tournament play, but did well recently at the Showboat, so now I want to get back into the swing of things.

In September, Hubby Mike and I are taking a vacation and will try to get into the Borgata Fall Poker Open's main event (10k buyin) by satelliting in. Even if we don't get it, I don't mind being in AC on vacation anyways! We may even be able to get on TV since the final table is televised, and we'll be there! This will be great practice to satellite into the Main Event WSOP in Vegas.

So here's what I need to do/accomplish to make this dream a reality:
1. Get on a plane. For those that know me personally, know our honeymoon story. I feel that right now, if I went to the airport, I can get on a plane and go anywhere. I need a practice flight before the 5 hour flight to Vegas.

2. Practice, practice, practice! This means playing more tournaments (which Hubby Mike won't like). He thinks I'm much better at cash games and should stick to that, but I like tournaments. I guess I'm a pain in the you know what!

3. Try to get off for the time necessary for the Main Event. There are a few different starting dates to accomodate the numbers of players in the field, so they have days 1a-1d I believe. It will be hard for Hubby Mike to get time off in the summer, so if we can't do it next year, perhaps we can wait until the following year.

4. Read some more poker books! They are great for those times I can't play b/c I'm stuck home. I have Doyle's books, but I haven't had the time to get through them yet.

5. Build up my bankroll, which could hurt if I play tournaments and don't cash, and lose money in cash games. I will need to sit back and really manage the bankroll once I start to go gung ho.


Hopefully, one day, I can accomplish my goal!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

June Grocery Savings



I went for my second month in a row setting my goal at 60% grocery savings. I wasn't sure I'd be able to do it, but I DID IT AGAIN! I exceeded my goal! Not by much, but I did exceed it! Here's my totals:

Number of items: 139
Total before savings: $471.19
Store Savings: $163.48
Coupons: $128.35
Number of Q's: 93
OOP: $185.96
Total Savings: $285.73 or 61%!!!

As you can see from last month's numbers, I bought significantly less stuff in June. But I saved MORE moneywise then May. Not too shabby! I probably could have saved a ton more, but I didn't go out to the stores much, I only went out 12 times, prior, I had gone out more then 20 times a month. So far this month, I went one time to A & P for 50% savings on Gatorade for DH. We'll see how the rest of the month goes! I'm aiming for another 60% goal for July!

A New Thing I Want to Try.....

crocheting! I see so many people making baby clothes by crocheting, and they are just sooooo adorable! I saw last week at A.C Moore starter kit type of things to make baby clothes, etc and I should have bought it! I just saw THE cutest baby boy jacket that a friend crocheted for another friend and it is sooooo precious!
Does anyone out there that follows my blog crochet? If so, where should I get started?

Monday, June 29, 2009

Why I Hound and Stockpile




Many of my friends who do not frequent this blog are curious as to why I hound, and why I take out so much of my precious time finding deals. I don't think they realize how simple it really is to do, and how many great friends I've made in the process.

When DH and I first moved in together (a year before we got married), we were in over our heads, literally. We didn't want to touch any of our savings $$ so we financed the condo 100%. Okay so in hindsight, bad move, however, since we didn't put the 20% down, we still have money in our savings. If we did put down that money, as of right now, we'd be out of the money b/c of the housing market. We did the 30 year fixed, so it's all good, no major interest rate increases! In the beginning, it was tough, going from living rent free, with NO bills to having a mortgage and so many 'house' bills. I cried myself to sleep every night wondering how we'd keep afloat. I did find out that this is quite normal, thank goodness!

It didn't dawn on me until after our wedding that we needed to cut back on spending. We were over $50k in debt between the two of us (credit cards, cars, student loans, etc.). It wasn't until about December of 2007 that I found the Women in Red Racers after reading an article in some magazine. I checked it out and it has been so useful! After being a 'racer' for a year and a half, we went from about 50k worth of debt to 20k worth of debt!

In that chatroom, I found the Grocery Challenge. These women are amazing. I was a little hestitant to join b/c when I looked on that thread, there was over 1000 pages! I figured I'd never catch up, but when I started to read the newest pages, they talked about that week's deals, different scenarios, bad and or good experiences, etc. We even talk about personal stuff b/c as I've found out the hard way, on the outside threads, those people can be nasty, but not the hounds!

Basically, we give each other ideas, etc and we swap coupons. It really is great! I go to the store every Sunday and buy 5 or more newspapers (depending on how good the coupons are!) and during the week, I clip away. I keep what I need and send out what I don't want.

I joined the hounds back in October and that's when I started really watching where my $$ goes with the grocery money. I have a set budget for each week for my groceries, and I haven't used it all in months! I also have a system of tracking how much the items are after savings and coupons, and after a few trips, I take the savings that I saved and I put them into an ING account. After a year (this October) I will tally it all up and that will in turn become our 'vacation' fund. As of right now, I have over 2k. My goal is to have 3k in there before October. We'll be taking our vacation in January, not sure where yet, but hopefully that will cover the vacation!

It's really fun going to the stores with my coupon binder and people always stop me to look at it. I used to do the accordian file thing, but once I become a 'hound' I had too many coupons! The binder is great for those that are visual type people and it's also great for those that are organized. I love when the older women stop me in the store and chat with me for awhile. I know most of them probably don't have many people to talk to, so I let them chat away with me. They think it's so great that such a young lady like myself takes the time out of my life to do it. I call my coupon binder my 'boyfriend'. My brother in law teases my DH that since he gets home so late (after 8pm) and I'm home early each day (4:30pm) that I have a guy come over to keep me company. Yea right! His name is coupon binder! DH will text me how I'm doing at night, and I'll text back that I'm having a grand old time with Q on the living room floor (where I cut my Q's). Tooo funny.

My parents joke with me that I'm like my grandfather, he was a tight rear end they say. He would give my grandmother a shopping list and coupons and money to the penny and she would grocery shop while he waited in the car. She was never allowed to go off the list or she'd be in trouble. He was like that in other aspects of life, and my parents see that in me.

I made a vow to DH that we would never go hungry. I would also have a stock of food and snacks on hand at any given moment. And so far, it's working out. AND, I'm saving money in the process, which is great!

In this economy, people need to take some time out of their hectic lives and focus on ways to improve their money situation. It doesn't take a lot of time to do this, it really doesn't. We all help each other out, and their are some great websites that I use to help out (hotcouponworld, couponmom, thegrocerygame) etc. that are great tools!

I'm hoping to get my personal grocery shopping business together, but I love doing this!

I'll be updating my blog more about my grocery outings and such since so many people have asked about it. I'll also be posting pics and what not about Mr. Q (Coupon binder).

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Poker Tournament V (5) at Showboat on June 20, 2009




I really wanted to play this tournament. I know the week prior I mentioned possibly taking a break from tourney play. Hubby Mike thinks there is too much luck and not enough skill involved to really make it in tourneys, which is why he plays cash, no more tournaments.

He was set to play golf for a kid's bachelor party that day, however, with the rain expected, he decided not to go...which was good b/c they played anyways (in the rain, something Hubby Mike hates to do) and they even got kicked off the course when the best man crashed into other golf carts, trees, etc. So it was good he didn't go.

The night before, we debated on what to do. He didn't want me to play the tourney, saying I've been running bad after I won some $$ in the Ladies event back in Sept. That was my last cash in the tourney circuits. I just really wanted to play. Maybe I needed to get out of Borgata or something, who knows. I told him it was only $250 buy in, so why not? My sister was in the midst of buying a Volvo, and I'm like 'If they can buy a brand new car, we can sure afford a $250 buy in' LOL. So after much debate the night before, I convinced him that instead of sleeping in and going down in the afternoon, we'll wake up early and BOTH play the tourney.

We got up and I wanted to be on the road (Parkway) by 8:30. Didn't happen, we left at 8:30 but had to get gas and he wanted McD's breakfast. He NEVER wants that when we're up early on weekends and I suggest getting it....but when I don't eat b4 tourneys, he decides to get it...figures. So we got on the Parkway a little after 9am. It wasn't too bad, he drove so it took longer then if I had driven. We hit some downpour rain right before our exit so people naturally slam on the brakes and forget how to drive. We finally got to Showboat at around 10:30 and I had to use the facilities big time. We got inside and for some reason, I thought the Ballroom was up the escalator in the lobby....we were so close to the ballroom too (which is just PAST the lobby). We got upstairs and realized we were in the wrong place. I went to the bathroom by the old poker room then we went down the other escalator by the boardwalk side. As we were going down the escalator at about 1045, Hubby Mike saw the line...I didn't at first, then saw it....it went from the HOB area all the way out to the alleyway in the casino....YIKES.

We got in line and more people proceeded to get in line behind us...which was good that we weren't the last ones in line. We waited a good 1.5 hours in line before getting to the cashier. They took 500 ppl and 50 alternates (550). I was alternate 22...wow....cutting it close! We went to the ballroom and we were both seated immediately. It's in this big open ballroom type (very dark). The first half is empty, then the second half had all the tables. It was very cramped and the girl taking me to my seat and I both had a hard time getting in to my table and we're both small girls too. I prayed I didn't have to go pee again b/c there was no way I was able to get up and out. When I sat down, the girl took a few hunge of chips off my stack, which I thought was weird. yes, I was an alternate, but I don't think they should have taken chips off my stack. Since the game is already in play, some ppl have less in chips and others have more then the starting stack, so why should I be at a disadvantage coming in fresh? At Harrahs, I played a tourney and was an alternate, but I started w/ the 10k in starting chips. I benefited b/c I was sitting down to the BB so she didn't take too much off (300) I think, but she said she wouldn't take the rest since I was going to be BB. Hubby Mike had about 700 in chips taken off his stack, AND was also seated to be BB.

I got to see about 3-4 hands before the break. The hand right before the break, I look at pocket nines, and one limper. I raise, SB and BB folds, limper calls. As he does, the lady announces 'Congratulations everyone, you have made it to the first break!' I think "oh boy....this could end ugly' lol. The flop is King 7 8 rainbow. Guy checks to me, I bet out 1000. He quickly calls. 'gulp' I think. Turn is like a four or a two, I don't recall. He checks again, I bet out 2000. He quickly calls. Now I'm thinking 'YAY, I'm gonna be out by the break!' River is a 9. I didn't have any 1000 chips left, so I threw out a grey 5000 chip and announce 3k. The guy was at the other end of the table, he didn't hear me and he was like '5k, I call' and I'm like 'no it was 3k' He's like 'Oh okay'. I was kinda hoping he raised me b/c I put him on ace king and trying to trap me. I flip over my set, and he's like 'Damn it!' and flips over queens. WOW! he called me the entire way with queens w/ a king on the flop. I was then up to about 17.5k in chips on the break.

When we came back from break, he was still fuming and telling the others around him who had left the table for break when the hand was in play still what happened. hey I didn't do anything wrong, I thought...he checked, so I bet....yes I got lucky on the river, but didn't he put me on a king at least? Oh well. Told him I never get lucky like that on the river.

I didn't play too many hands after that...I did win a few uncontested pre flop raises, etc, but nothing too big. Hubby Mike got knocked out after about an hour of play. He was in a hand and had pocket kings and announced raise and threw out a 1000 chip, but nobody heard him. So a lot of low cards came out and ppl hit two pair and showed when he folded his kings face up after a bet and a raise before him. He got kings again and got sucked out on,but hey, it happens. He sat around to watch me play and I got involved in a huge hand with Ace King. A few limpers, and I raised to about 3k preflop (blinds were getting up there). I had about 4 callers. Yikes. All low cards on the flop, 2 diamonds. Check around to me, i bet, they all call. Another diamond on the turn. Guy to my right bets out. hmmmmm, I know I have the ace of diamonds under there, but was the king one too? I know it was red...so I check my cards...it was a heart...dag nab it! He had bet out about 5k. Great...I have 11k left. Ugh ugh ugh. So I have 2 overs and if another diamonds comes out, jackpot for me. So I push all in for another 6 k, he immediately calls. River is a blank and my heart sinks (it happened so quickly that we didn't even flip over our cards yet.) He flips over king queen....two red...but wait, the queen is a heart! I flip over my ace high and win (he thought his king high flush draw was good!). So I took down a HUGE pot with ace high! Wow! So I tell the table that I knew the ace was a diamond and the king was red, but I wasn't sure if it was a diamond (BS, I knew the king was a heart, but I had to justify myself).

We broke up that table and i moved. I ran into some friends along the way, which was nice. The next table I had one guy from my first table who was Mr. Rule guy. He was annoying. He got knocked out pretty early on into that that second table. I was gaining on chips and happy. I had close to 100k when I get dealt pocket kings (YIPPEE!) another woman at the table raised to 30k, I look down at my beautiful kings. I push all in for 93k, so it's another 63k for her to call. She thinks for awhile, counting out the chips, then counting what she would have left over if she calls. She'd have about 10k left in chips if she calls and loses. I know at this point I had her beat right there, so I felt pretty good. She finally calls saying she's pot committed (no she's not) with queen ten suited spades. Ugh, I got such a BAD feeling about this hand. Flop is low cards, 2 spades. You have GOT to be kidding me! Turn is a queen, giving her yet more outs. River is black king. BUT, I had the king of spades, so the king of clubs came out....YIPPEE for me! So all them chips come my way. I then tell her 'Queen ten you called me with?????" She's like 'yea, I was pot committed' 'No you weren't....but queen ten girl? please' She was knocked out the next hand or the hand after that.

There was one guy at my table who was new to tournaments, but kept getting lucky as anything. He took out mm with ace 6 off....mm went all in w/ queens and he called with ace six....saying he didn't know how mm played and put him on king queen when he shoved. Okay, he contradicted himself...if you don't know how he plays, how can you put him on any hand? duh. He was out a few hands later....good riddance.

Soon after, we were in the money. We started with 550 ppl and we were in the money very quickly. This type of tournament would last two days at Borgata. The blinds went up quickly here. At my last break, I had just over 200k in chips. I went to the remaining tables to check around and it looked like I could be the chipleader...if anything, maybe 3rd or so. So I went on break happy as a bee. I think it got to my head b/c I was out before the next break The blinds were getting high, as were the antes. I figured I could sit back for awhile, which was wrong. I wasn't getting dealt anything and every hand was an all in fest, so I had to sit back and take a backseat. I was in the BB when the blinds were 20-40k and i had another 20k after my BB. One guy limped, SB went all in as well (he had more chips then me) and I threw out my last 20k without even looking. Limper had 10 4 suited and I forgot what the other guy hand...I had king 10, so I went in w/ the best hand....limper won with trip 4s, so he knocked two of us out. I came in 22nd, which was a coincidence as I was the 22nd alternate. I got 587.36 for my efforts.

All in all, I enjoyed this tourney. The only hand I lost the entire day was that last one, which knocked me out of the tourney. I really felt it was my day to take this one day, and I tasted the 33k first prize. But to no avail, it didn't happen, but I enjoyed every minute of it, and can't wait for the next one!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Borgata Summer Open Ladies Event June 14, 2009


Well, I didn't get the chance to do a shout out to the bloggers, although I did talk to one quite a bit. I wanted to warm up to him before asking to be put on the blog. The guy last year (Johnny Walker) was cool and put me on there. He probably got in trouble b/c they were told specifically that they cannot blog about the ladies event, just to post the blinds going up and any 'famous' ppl playing (hmmmm, I'm not famous yet? Bull!!! lol). I didn't want to get him in trouble, but they did blog an awful lot about the ladies event.

So, we arrived early, as usual. I wasn't feeling it from the get go. I almost opted not to play, but since we were there for that, I did it. Maybe b/c I didn't get a good nights' sleep or I had breakfast first, no idea, but i wasn't feeling it and played my D game. yup, my B and C game didn't even show up.

The first round, there was one girl who was in EVERY hand. Ton of action too. We started with 10k in chips with blinds at 25 50. Second hand in, 1k chips were being thrown into the pot...wow. Aggressive girl lost a big hand in the first round and second round, but held her own. Won a ton back when a girl who knows her stuff raised pre flop with ace king suited. King on the flop and raggy cards out there. Betting and raising left and right. Huge bet on the river. Now there was an 8 on the flop and another on the river with all rags other then the king. Aggressive girl had 5 8 raiser had ace king....5 8 boated on the riv. OUCH!

I wasn't really getting cards, so I played tight, very tight. Limping with ace jack, ace queen, pocket nines and nothing on the flop, so I would end up folding to a bet. See, my D game. Couldn't get off it. Had queens, girl makes it 450 pf, I call. 2 or 3 other callers. Flop is 6 2 2. I bet 1500, pf raiser goes all in for an additional 1200, I call...she has kings...ugh. no queen...all well. I was down to less then 5k during this hand. I slowly made my way about up to almost 9k in the next round by getting good hands and ppl folding to nothing on the flop. I also bluffed quite a lot as well. I hardly do that, but it was working for me.

Another good hand at the table was aces v aces....the one girl almost won...on the turn, 3 spades....river was a blank, so they split.

On to my demise. It was either the 5th or 6th round and I get 8 9 off in the big blind. Girl raises to 650, so it's only a little over a min raise. So I call. Flop gives me an open ended straight draw (4 6 7). I'm putting her on either an big over pair (kings or aces) or a big ace like ace king (esp due to the small size of the raise pf.). She continue bets, I insta call. I always seem to get in trouble chasing, but I kept seeing ppl catch left and right, so I thought it was my turn. Turn is a queen. I think, then check, hoping that since I've been playing tight, since I called the pf raise and insta called the flop, that she put me on a big hand here. I'm hoping for the free river card...she bets out 1700. Ugh. ugh. I call. River is a 3 of hearts....I grab a bunch of high chips, and throw out 3k. She is like 'Did I just get rivered TWICE in 3 hands???' She thought for awhile. Alls I needed was a 5 in my hand to have a straight. Now I think she's holding ace queen or something. She def put me on a hand....after awhile she called...'Nice call I say' She flips over trip sevens...ouch! Everyone at the table said that we both played it well and said I made a great play on the riv. My friend happened to be standing by me and saw, and apologized but said it was an awesome play. he thought i had nuts on that hand....I wanted her to think so too, but trip sevens...wow!!

So the next hand I am in the small and get four five...I'm just so aggravated that I push all in...two callers...they check it down. Nothing...I did hit a five, but the other girl hit a jack....ah well. I was the first one at my table to bust out....yay. I checked online this morning, I don't think anyone at my table cashed, but my friend took 8th! not too shabby!

I was so upset that I busted out that I made Hubby Mike cash out at the cash game. I don't know why, but I didn't even want to be at the Borgata...I felt so embarrassed....I guess b/c I got my hand caught in the cookie jar. Anyone else ever feel that way?

so we walk around and found an open let it ride 3 card bonus table. nobody is there, so Hubby Mike and I sit down and play. As soon as we do, the table fills up. We played for awhile, and I was on my last hand since I was down about 100. I look at an ace and I tell Hubby Mike 'Should I put it down?" (in 3 card,if I see an ace first, I play it, no matter what). So I look at the second card, another ace. I put it down. I stay the entire way....when it comes to me...3 aces! YAY! So i made my money back plus over 100, so that was good. Cashed out, grabbed some dinner, then went home....got home EARLY....around 7pm...we're never home before 1am when we go on a Sunday. But I'm getting old and need to function at work, so getting home late I can't do anymore on a work night.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Free Suze Orman Will and Trust Kit!




Thanks to MoneySavingMethods for posting this!

I am a HUGE fan of Suze Orman, I don't care how bad she looks in the media right now. I have, and always will be a fan of hers. Yes, she said one thing, then changed her mind....but what woman DOESN'T do that???

Typically, this is $13.95, but use the code People First and it's FREE!

Go here to access the Will and Trust form.

Scroll down and click on the Gift Code button.

Once you do that, there will be a spot to enter the code and access your free kit.

It's time to stop saying "Oh, I'll get to it eventually." Well, the time is NOW, especially that it's FREE!

Free White Castle Slider!




With Father's Day around the corner (Sunday), here's a coupon to take your father, brother, husband, etc. for a free sandwhich at White Castle!

Thanks to SwagGrabber for posting!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

May Totals



So, I did not reach my goal for April, but I set my May goal for 60%. I must say, the Super Double Dollar week at A & P got me off to a GREAT start! I didn't hit too many setbacks after that, but some of my orders were a little less than 50% so that brought my totals down a bit...did I do it? Check below to see!

Number of items: 216
Total before savings: $720.72
Store Savings: $262.55
Coupons: $199.11
Number of Q's: 119
OOP: $236.76
Total Savings: $$270.20 or 63%!!!

I DID IT! I reached my 60% goal! I'm so proud...and happy that A & P did double dollars! I wouldn't have been able to do it without it! I'm going to aim for 60% again for June. Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

I'm Baaaaack!

Wow, it has been awhile since I posted huh? Let's see, I did awesome with the A & P super Double Dollar coupons in the beginning of May and totally stocked up on Ziploc. They were free, giving me a profit of .50 a piece, and every 3 that I bought, I got coupons for OYNO! I used ALL my ziploc coupons and got a TON of stuff for almost free! I couldn't believe it! Then I went away for work for two weeks. I only got to hound once out there, got Viamin water for .73 a piece and some Nabisco snack packs for $1 a piece (normally 2.49). I went to A & P last week, saved some $$, and I also did a big grocery order on Sunday with DH and my cousin.....I saved a little less then 50%, but we HAD to get kitty litter and DH's lunch meat and newspapers. I have money budgeted for those, but I normally do it all separate so the papers and the lunch meat don't reflect my grocery savings, since even though the lunch meat is on sale, it's not reflected on the receipt...all well. DH also got into a fight in the aisle. It's weird, he's normally the cool, calm and collected one of the relationship, and I'm the snippy, bitchy one. So here's the story:

DH goes to wait in line for his lunch meat, so my cousin and I do the shopping. DH finds us in the cereal aisle where I'm looking for the Special K that's on sale...NONE, the whole shelf is empty. Oh well. So as I'm standing back up (the Special K is on the bottom shelf), DH comes down the aisle. He has his lunch meat in one hand and a bday card for his sister in law in the other. When I saw the card (my cousin and I saw it at the same time) and we both laugh, and he's like 'What?" And I'm like 'I got the SAME card for Jess!' (Jess is sister in law). So we're talking about it, and a lady comes to the end of my cart, where my cousin is standing. I heard her mumble something, so I assumed she had said excuse me, so I moved my cart back so she can get to what she needs. So we start talking about how the card fits Jess to a tee, and the lady is shuffling boxes and boxes are falling. now, she is nowhere near my cart, so I'm not in her way, at least I didn't think she was. She we're talking or whatever, then she gets up (she was bending down) and throws a box or two into her cart. I pick little things up even when I'm in conversation with others...I guess it's in my Criminal Justice background lol. So as they walk away, passing us, she mumbles something about how rude people are. I know she's referring to me b/c she gave me a nasty look, but I let it slide. Normally, I woulda been in her face haha. So, as they walk past, the husband gives my DH a look. I too let that pass...no need to make a scene over something stupid. So, the guy gives my DH another look, to this, my DH turns and is like 'What is your problem?" oh boy, not good. So they start arguing. DH normally just walks away, but not this time. The guy starts saying that we were rude and not moving at of his wife's way. Then the wife comes back and starts walking towards my DH with her hubby. I grab my DH's shirt and I'm like 'Walk away, they must live pathetic lives if they want to start a fight in the middle of a shop rite. So the lady starts saying to me that she had asked me a few times to move so she can reach her stuff. Then she's like 'Even when all the boxes were falling, you still didn't move' I told her I wasn't even NEAR her and if she did say something, she wasn't audible b/c my cousin was standing at the end of my cart! HELLO! Then DH was like 'I saw you, YOU started pushing the boxes around and making them fall!' Then the lady was like 'Maybe if you weren't arguing with each other, you would have seen me struggling and moved out of the way!' Um, when did joking about a card and how it fits someone perfectly turn into arguing? Whatever. I finally got DH to walk away from it. My cousin was like 'She was no where near your cart after you moved when she first walked over!' And if it was that big of a deal, she should have said excuse me again. She only said it once, and that one time, it was a mumble. I assumed it was 'excuse me' since she was near my cart. It really fired up my DH. I think maybe our roles are reversing :) But seriously, there's no need to fight with someone in a Shop Rite..esp when it's the one that DH's mom works at lol

We've also been very busy with Lucky, our new kitty! Here are some pics:


That is her, doing what she does best...SLEEP!



This was her first day at her new home. DH was on the couch watching the Mets game. She jumped right on him! Guess she's a Mets fan....will have to change that to a YANKEES fan!



Guess I was a little tired and took a 'catnap' with Lucky :)

We also went to a wedding on Monday, and it was the first time we left her home alone for more then an hour. She did very well! I don't think she got up off the couch from her 'naptime' Here's a pic from the wedding:




I will be updating more often! Hope everyone is doing well!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Still no Lucky :(

I just called the shelter to check on Lucky. The nice lady there told me that the vet looked at her yesterday, and he doesn't think it's a hernia after all, that it's a fluid buildup from the spaying. I guess that's good? But hopefully the buildup goes away? She also is going to be on medicine for 5 days that will give her an appetite, so she'll be eating. She said that normally on day 3, the cats turn around and start eating normally. She is still gaining weight so that's good. She also said she pepped up when she saw the vet, but I guess not in a good way, since the lady said 'She did pep up when she saw the vet, probably because she didn't want to see him' LOL. She said to check back on Thursday to see how her progress is going. DH said that even if they said we can take her home today, that we wouldn't because she was out of it yesterday when we saw her. I also didn't want to pick her up during the week because I want to be here with her for a day to see how she reacts to the house. So maybe Friday or Saturday she'll be able to come home finally! As for now, we have my parent's dog, he's going home later today. Such a good dog. He's been sleeping all night and all morning. He's passed out on the living room floor stretched out and snoring....too cute!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Back Home in Jersey!

I'm finally back home in Jersey! YIPPEE! I was gone for two whole weeks and didn't really post any blogs, as I didn't really hound or save money since work paid for everything! I did hit Safeway for Vitamin Water for .77 cents and some snacks for $1 a piece, normally $2.49. I did some grocery shopping Friday when we got home. I wanted to stock up on meats on sale at Shop Rite, but we went at about 9pm, so all the good meats that were all sale were gone. Ah well.

Update on Lucky (Kitty). She is officially our kitty! I filled out the paperwork while on travel for work and faxed it in. When we came home Friday, we made some donations to the shelter and to visit her. She had just gotten spayed so she seemed all doped up. She was very quiet as well. I don't think she knew who we were. Today was her day to come home, so we cleaned, got her bed set up, got her litter box situated and went to get her. She hasn't been eating since about Wed. or Thursday...she only picks a little here and there. She also popped a hernia after the spaying, so she can't come home. When I went there and said we were taking her home, they were like 'Nobody called you?" I'm like no why? That's when they told me. I was a little irritated that nobody called me, but they're lucky I live a block away LOL. They took her out for us and told us to hold her and pet her, maybe it'd put her in a better mood, so we stayed with her for awhile. She started wagging her tail a bit, and I took that as that she was happy/content, but the woman that was there visiting the other cats said 'No, when they do that, it means they're agitated.' LOL...woops...so we gave Lucky back and the lady there said to call tomorrow afternoon. The vet was going to look at her again today and see if she's making any progress......poor Lucky :(

When we saw her both times, she's shedding like anything! DH had a white shirt on which was black when he was done holding her. Also, she had this big dandruff type flakes on her, which she did NOT have at all when we took her there....is this common after vaccines and spaying? Not sure what it was, but it looks like big dandruff flakes...and it's sooooo easy to spot b/c she's a black kitty.

I was very upset when we left, so we went and picked up my parents dog since he is going to be home alone all day as my parents are at a BBQ.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Kitty

This week I've been majorly slacking keeping up with my savings and stockpile and poker update information. This is due to Kitty. Kitty is a stray male (we think) cat about a year old, maybe younger. I saw him walking around last week and tried to catch it. Wouldn't let me near it. I started putting food out for him and he came around every night for his meal. He's so cute and meows so cutely! On Tuesday, while DH was home at night, I tried to get him to come inside. I left the patio door open and he was hesitant at first, but he came in. Only a little bit for a few minutes tops. Then he went back out. He liked our house!

Wednesday I was home b/c we had our air compressor replaced (fun). My 3 year old nephew and my mom came over since she babysits sometimes during the week since she got laid off last month. My nephew saw the food and was looking for "Kitty". I never saw him during the day, only at night. He came over Wednesday and came in again. This time, he let me pet him then 'marked' me as my co-workers said. He loved being in the house, only the one part of the living room. He also loved me! When he went back outside, when I called him, he came, just like a dog! When DH came home, he went right up to him!

On Thursday, he was waiting for me to get home from work. He came to the truck when I got out, followed me to the front door, then ran to the patio for his dinner. When I walked to get the mail, he walked with me, like a well trained dog. He also followed me back. I was getting really attached, but couldn't keep him b/c he's a stray (we think someone dumped him). and we're going to MD for 2 weeks and I'm allergic. DH and I tried to get him in the truck to get him to Petco for an exam and low cost vaccines. He wouldn't get in and scratched us up. We asked around and someone mentioned that a woman was looking for a cat the other day, so we walked around the complex trying to see if Kitty would find his home. He went under some bushes so we walked home, he did not follow. DH took the food away b/c I was crying for no reason about this cat. We didn't see him all last night.

Today, I was still upset, so DH said that he figured since he didn't come around last night that someone took him in, probably found home. He said that if when we got home from work, he was around, we'd take him to the shelter and explain the situation and see what they say. As I go to the mailbox, I hear him crying for me. He was waiting on the patio. I went inside, got him some treats and rushed to Petco for a crate. I got one and got home and got him in. As I did that, a neighbor came over. He's been feeding him too and got somewhat attached to him. He said he's a great cat, so cute, etc. He's a cat guy too, he has 2. I asked if he wanted him, he said he already has 2 cats and the assn rules state only two animals...meanwhile, ppl have TONS of dogs and cats! So we chatted for awhile and I took Kitty to the shelter.

Once there, the lady was unpersonable and rigid. There were a ton of cats there, so I didn't like Kitty's chances of getting adopted or claimed. The lady said there's a waiting list so I'm assuming that some people are trying to get rid of their cats, so when a spot opens, they call the owner and ppl can surrender the cats? So I spoke with her some more and she said that there's a colony of cats in our development (we've been here for 3 years, this is the FIRST cat I've seen!) where people feed the cats and they bring them in to get checked up, spayed, etc. then let back out in the wild by us. People still feed them as outside cats and they can't reproduce since they're fixed, to bring down the population. When she looked at Kitty she said he's probably from the colony and needed his ear clipped, NO, I said, he is NOT from the colony or his ear would be clipped already. She took my number and my license and make a copy. I asked what would happen with Kitty and she said he'll be on 'hold' for 7 days for someone to claim. If nobody claims him, on day 8 he will go up for adoption. I just have a bad feeling that he won't get taken care of and will either be put to sleep (it's a no-kill but she mentioned she had no room for him, so I'm terribly worried) or they will dump him out here again. Let me just say that if I find out any of that, I will be owning that adoption place!
I just hope they do the right thing with this kitty....he's a GREAT cat! If, when we get home from MD and he's still there, we're going to adopt him. I'll pay the fee since they will do the fixing, vaccines, etc. Also, the guy neighbor is going to talk to his boyfriend about adopting the kitty as well. So cross your fingers.

This week has been a terrible roller coaster for me. I've been crying uncontrollably about Kitty. When he was here crying I couldn't take it....now that I'm home and he's not here, I'm crying again. Little things set me off. DH doesn't understand b/c I'm not a cat person....I can't stand cats....but this little guy found us and I feel I've betrayed him by putting him in a crate and taking him there. People say I did the right thing...he will get treament if he needs, fixed, fed the right foods, etc. If he finds a loving home before we get home, then it was not meant to be with us owning him....but my heart is breaking.

Friday, May 1, 2009

April Totals


This month I am on time with my totals! YIPPEE! I did not hit my mark, again, but what I think is/was killing me was Shop Rite and their meats and produce. Their old receipts only showed the Price Plus sales. Now, the one I go to has the touch screens AND shows store sales AND Price Plus sales! YIPPEE! Next month should be better (esp w/ the $1 doubles at A and P) so I'm going to shoot for 60% savings for May.....can I do it???????

Number of items: 109
Total before savings: $467.05
Store Savings: $125.00
Coupons: $99.87
Number of Q's: 78
OOP: $236.76
Total Savings: $230.29 or 49%