Saturday, July 31, 2010

Why I love July

Okay there's watermelon galore, and swimming on a hot summer days, but besides all of that I love July because Target clearances out their toys! I mean serious clearancing. 75%-90% off! If you can, Christmas shop & birthday shop at the end of July every year!! This lot of 14 toy sets (great toys) would have cost $151 and I spent $46! I was able to buy gifts for 2 parties my girls are going to, presents for my baby boy Seth's upcoming 2nd birthday (he's a huge Toy story fan), as well as Christmas presents for all my kids! Plus a couple things I plan to sell on eBay. I personally know that when I was looking for Super Why toys when my kids were really into it, there were none out there! And really right now, there aren't too many on eBay either. My splurge? That Buzz Lightyear costume. I've been eyeing it at Target at $19.99 and talked myself out of it because it was a larger size and Seth wouldn't be able to wear it this Halloween, even though he is a big boy!! But when it was only $9? I splurged. HE'll LOVE it!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Hoping for more

Re: More appealing + more sales - I've also decided that people don't like to wait for items to end, I know I don't!! When I'm buying, I hate being outbid at the last minute after I've pined over an item all week!! I don't know the exact facts, and I may be way off, but in my opinion the closer to the end of auction the more traffic will be coming across your auction anyway. So I decided to cut my auctions to 3 days. This also helps in my sitting at the computer waiting while 5 people are watching an item only to find nobody bid on it and I'll have to relist. Here's to hoping for more sales! And... my hopes will hopefully not get dashed as often this way!

p.s. I've already listed a bunch of auctions and already they are getting more hits & bids!! I love being right!

More appealing + more sales!!

Sales for me have been slim as of late on eBay and I started to wonder why???? Possibly my concern was spurred by the fact that I recently spent about $100 at Goodwill on a spree and was hoping to see some speedy returns :)
One Day I noticed something significant! My Dear Trash has a link to Laura's eBay store on the side of their blog. I was checking out her deals and saw that her pictures are almost always taken on her hard wood floor. And it has a really nice stand out effect! She is so smart!! So I looked at my pictures on my auctions and decided I needed some drastic action. I retook all my clothing pictures!! Previously all my clothing pictures had been on hangers. Ad really that's not always flattering nor can you see most details of clothing that way. In my case the spot I'd chosen was between my computer desk and my kitchen counter, fine except you can see phone /computer cords in some of the pics. For example this one: After seeing the new pictures I just had a great feeling that this week would be fantastic!

And - drumroll please - it was!!! Although a lot of the items sold these week were ones I've had in my ebay box for over a year!! Woohoo for cleaning house! Here are some of the best sales:

GAP Sz 4 Lightweight Trouser jeans- not denim - Ankle Purchased for $3.50 sold for $6.99 (+ s&h)

WEE SHADES Infant sun glasses RED. Purchased for $.99 sold for $6.50(+s&h)

Cute girls HALLOWEEN TEE XS 4/5 Fairy Dog. Purchased for $.80 sold for $1.99 (+ s&h)

BOYS Halloween My Brothers A Monster TEE sz M Glows. Purchased for $.40 sold for $1.99

Classic Pooh pre-pasted 5 yd wallpaper border. New. Purcahsed for $.99 sold for $4 (+ s&h)

2 pairs Boys black dress pants 18M & 2T Great condition. Paid $0 (from my own household) sold for $3.99 (+ s&h)

The BIG surprise: 3X LIZ & ME Red & Pink flowery Top. Paid $0 (came from my mom) sold for $17.01 (+ s&h)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

When in need...

When my daughter saw a need for Tinkerbell to have a 4th of July dress (today on the 24th) she took it into her own hands (literally) and made her own out of paper. I especially like the accessories - flag ribbon for a belt and jeweled stickers on the shoes. Pretty creative little thing she is. I think she usurped my creativity in the womb and left none for me!

Friday, July 23, 2010

VASTLIG Topsy Turvey style planter - ONLY $2!!

I have tried to grow tomatoes two years in a row, fairly unsuccessfully (although this year was better than last because I planted cherry tomatoes). It could be because my thumb is orange rather than green or it could be the awful climate live in! That's why I've been tempted to buy the Topsy Turvey upside-down planters As seen on TV. Those I could hang from my front porch patio cover and the sun wouldn't be able to scorch them like it does in the ground.
Today I came across a truly thrifty idea though - and way cuter than the Topsy Turvey! IKEA Hacker has THIS fab idea on her blog of using IKEA Vastlig bags to plant them in! I love these!! Darn it - Can someone tell me why is it that as such an international city, Las Vegas has no IKEA??? I try to go while on vacation in Utah every so often but I tend to get overwhelmed with lack of time to browse and dream, and lack of space in my van to take everything I want home -plus- my family. If I could just run over to one in my own city I am sure I would be a serious IKEA-holic!

Thursday, July 22, 2010


I found these babies on the curb next door to my parents house, that and 3 vacuums of different vacuums, but I have a thing about used vacuums, and a rule of never picking them up - leave that for somebody else. When I showed these lamps to my husband he all but rolled his eyes! I tried to explain they were for our room & I am going to spray paint them to something fabulous!! I'm not a hoader, honest but he thinks I have sort of a track record on bringing things home -
  • the great Lazy Boy Over stuffed chair I am going to recover cuz I don't love coffee and that's what the design screams (it's still in my garage). My husband says its been in there about 2 years - but I'm sure its been less than a year.
  • the patio swing (actually I picked this up next door to my parents too) It just needs to be recovered and have a new awning made - its actually been on the side of my parents house for about 2 or 3 years now - I wonder if the original owners snicker at seeing it.
  • My husband brought home about 3 or 4 ceiling fan/lighting units from a job that were going to be trashed - see he loves me! But I don't him they too needed a fresh coat of paint. I just don't do brass-colored. It kind of makes me cringe. They have been in the garage now about 2 months.

Isn't the molding great?! And the shades are still plastic covered! I'd really like to do something great with those!! I plugged them in and even the lightbulbs still worked! What a score! I have been needing lamps for my bedroom - that or a ceiling fan. There is no overhead lighting so we only have light from the adjoining master bathroom. Both rooms are powder blue shades. I'm thinking of painting them white or black, but am open for suggestions on a color to really stand out fabulously!! After all it may be a bit of time before I paint them anyway.

Monday, July 19, 2010

A Very Sweet Surprise!

I subscribe to 5 newspapers so that I can get 5 times the coupons each week. Every once in awhile it really pays off! For example this weekend in both the Parade magazine & USA weekend magazine there was a coupon for a free smoothie or frappuccino at McD's! No purchase necessary. So.....10 absolutely FREE smoothies for me & my kiddos! Well maybe I'll share with my husband, we'll see ;)

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Springs Preserve

Yesterday as part of the Target Arts & Wonder Weekend there was free family admission to The Springs Preserve! This place is amazing and I haven't even seen half of it yet.

The Springs Preserve which is just 3 miles from the Las Vegas Strip, is a 180-acre national historic site featuring botanical gardens, trails, historical structures, restored wetlands, wildlife exhibits, a child's play area and a 1,800-seat amphitheater. Indoor experiences include two exhibition galleries dedicated to showcasing art of local and national significance, on-site technologically advanced learning center and interactive museum exhibits, and the Springs Cafe by Wolfgang Puck.The Springs Preserve also hosts seasonal special events including concerts, arts shows and holiday experiences.

It was really expensive when it first opened (in the neighborhood of $20 per person) so we put off going. The last two Christmas's I've wanted to get a family annual pass. This year I think it's down to around $65 for a family pass which is awesome! My mom's already offered to get us one for Christmas this year. One of my daughters went with a school class and loved it! She came home exhausted, hot and happy and raved about it. My other daughter was delighted when she heard we were going, and instead of hearing all the reviews from her 6 year old sister she refused and wanted to be surprised herself!

Saturday, at the Event it was probably easily 115 outside, a ton of people inside, and really loud music but we were glad for the opportunity to check parts of it out ad look forward to going again when its much quieter. They have really amazing gardens, a cool nature Exchange where kids can bring in nature items they've found (like bugs, rocks, shells, seed pods, etc) to trade for other nature items.

If you're interested in the Springs Preserve you can check out their website:
I'm thinking it would be awesome for date nights to go strolling through the gardens, or even through the exhibits to gain some new knowledge!! You know how those momma brains get after endless hours of childcare!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Thrifty or Cheap?

O-Kay, sometimes I think I am being cheap and then tell myself "It's being thrifty" to make myself feel better. Does anyone else do that?

My kiddos really wanted to see Toy Story 3, so we planned to go and kept putting it off, cuz well it's expensive nowadays to go to the movie theater! In Las Vegas we have a great $1.50 theater, Tropicana Cinemas, but there's no guarantee Toy Story 3 was going to end up at it. One day my 6 year old said "Mom it's okay, we can just wait and buy it on DVD or rent it at RedBox." What a little smartie! I should have taken her up on that! Nevertheless, we ended up going Monday night for a fun family night, and alas I should have been ready for the sticker shock - Matinee prices here are $6.75 for kids and $7.75 for adults. To me that's a lot, but we've gotten used to it and RedBox a whole lot more movies nowadays. But, what hit below the belt for me was the fact that Cinemark/Century Theaters now charges for kids 1 and up! What?! I mean is that really necessary??? The fact that I braved the movie theater with my 18 month old should be enough to win me some respect let alone a free popcorn to keep him content, but they don't give those out for less than $5 bucks either!

Well anyway, that led to me writing to Customer Service and voicing my complaint. If they really need to charge parents for their babies, then maybe soon they'll be asking Congress for a bailout, and I should feel sorry for them too. Right.

Should I receive a comment back worthy of posting, I'll add to this post. But till then, I've given them my word I won't be returning to their theaters with my hard earned cash with or without kids, and babies in tow.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Missed decor options!

I had an extremely busy week and never got a chance to make some fun 4th of July decor. My decor is really shabby when it comes to 4th of July. So now that I've been able to check up on my fav blogs I have some great ideas for next year and can be looking for stuff on the cheap all year! What I really need to do is get ready for the next big Holiday - Halloween! And well, in my opinion that's one of the funnest to decorate for anyhow!

So for my fav 4th of July smashing ideas for next year -

Alpha Mom - Fun 4th of July Confetti Popper Rockets. Here's the tutorial for how super easy these are! I loved them as decor before I even knew they were real poppers! My kids will love making these!
Eighteen 25 - Beautiful and sophisticated! Love this one. They have an awesome tutorial too. And it can be used for lots of holidays. I think I'll do all mine at once and put them away for future holidays (BOO for Halloween, JOY for Christmas, LOVE for Valentines Day - I really need to think up a good one for Thanksgiving - maybe Gobble? or Thanks.... except both are kind of long)
At Second Street - This flag is inspired! Its beautiful! I love doilies for their intricacy but don't personally like to put them under things to decorate. Mother in law send me a fab one from Europe which in the shape of a heart and framed. I'll post about it around V-Day even though I have it up year round!!
Bethany at The Paper Pony had a great tutorial here on how to make this easy and fun flag for the front door, or wall or anywhere! Even I can handle this craft!