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Sorry, everyone. I really did mean to have a new post up long before now, but life has been hectic. I’ll explain in my next post.
Also, my C key went out for a bit, which made it difficult to write email replies for my job, let alone prose online. Thankfully, my boss sent me a new laptop.
So I know Black Friday is well in the review mirror, but here’s how my BF and general shopping has been going.
My Black Friday-priced buys
This year it seems like most stores gave up on the pretense of “pre-Black Friday sales” and just offered Black Friday prices for most of November.
I’m sure that’s much easier on their employees — and a great way for people to avoid impulse purchases, since they have time to consider whether they really need/want something.
But the slow pace also meant that I completely forgot to sit down and make a list of things I should look for.
So I got a great deal on some $2.99 shorts from Target’s clearance section, but I completely forgot to look for leggings, which are what I need at this time of year.
Anyway, let’s look at the other stuff I got. I’ll start with the biggies.
I bought three things during the sales — two of which quickly added up.
There’s an ever-so-slight chance I went overboard on the protein bars deal.
Each row you see is five, 12-count boxes. The other half of the closet is the same. Because I bought 42 boxes.
Extreme, I know. But here’s why:
Target was offering 25% off Health & Wellness items, which included these.
That’s a far better deal than I’ve found in a long time from any store/website. And since I eat two, occasionally three, bars a day, big savings is important.
Also, using my Chase Freedom card through PayPal got me 5% back.
Also, also: Target gave me $15 in rewards for making two $70+ purchases.
Target limits the protein bars to six boxes per order. So I placed seven orders. And I should now be set for seven to eight months.
Every year, Target has a sale on its gift cards: 10% off up to $500 in value.
Given how much I’d already spent on protein bars, I almost didn’t take advantage of the sale. But I finally accepted that seven to eight months’ worth of protein bars isn’t the same as a year’s worth.
In other words, I’ll need to buy more bars months before I’ll have access to 10% off gift cards again.
So I sucked it up and bought a $500 gift card for $450 — with $25 back through my Freedom card, of course.
Savings will take a bit of a hit. I might normally try to cover it out of my paycheck, but this is the last one of the year, so I want plenty left over to throw into my retirement accounts.
(Yes, I know I can keep doing 2023 contributions til April, but as an S-Corp with a 401(k) plan, I’ll never hit the max yearly contributions. So it’s easiest to count contributions by the calendar year.)
I’ve always poo-pooed rice makers. What’s so hard about making rice on the stove, for goodness sake?
But last year I finally admitted that one would be nice.
I’m usually cooking at least two other things on the stove if I’m making rice, so I can’t always spare one of my larger pots. Which means the rice boils over, leaving a film on the stovetop that I have to clean later.
For years, I’d seen them for $10 to $12 on Black Friday, but of course, when I started looking last year, all of the deals were for Instant Pots only.
So this year when Target had this one for $15, I decided to get it. I haven’t had a chance to use it yet, but rice-based dishes are a mainstay in cooler months, so its time is coming.
In more aesthetically pleasing purchases, I also picked up some art prints I’d had my eye on for a while.
When you have Bipolar II Disorder and ADD, it’s easy to get caught up in the moment. So I try not to buy art immediately, just in case my enthusiasm wanes.
But I’d found one a few months before and the other several years before, so I felt safe taking advantage of a 50% off sale.
So what did I buy, you ask?
The perfect title
This is one of those cases where the image is great on its own — but the title pushes it over the edge into fabulous.
I found this back in July, and I loved it so much that I’ve been going back to view it every couple to few weeks.
Each time I pulled it up, I debated just buying it, but since Society6 doesn’t offer free shipping, the total was always just high enough that I didn’t want to pull the trigger.
But four months after I first found the print, the Black Friday sale made it a no-brainer. It came a few days ago, and I love it just as much in person.
Once it’s framed and on the wall, I’ll print out the title and put it underneath — so everyone gets the full meaning/impact of the piece.
This one has been around far longer than the other.
Around seven or eight years ago, I got some nice (and nicely framed) art off Art.com. This one didn’t make the cut — mostly because I had to be fair and get Tim some art too. (We had different aesthetics.)
I haven’t been thinking about it steadily all of those years, but every time I see it, I fall back in love.
(As an Amazon affiliate, I’m compensated for purchases through my links.)
Art.com was offering free shipping on all orders — exceedingly rare — and it was half off. So I got the print and will find a frame and mat on my own.
Anyway, frame and mat costs aside, I paid $20.32 for “Remember to Love Yourself” (including tax and shipping) and only $12.95 for “Little Bird.”
But of course, I also went through Mr. Rebates for cash back and once again used my Chase Freedom card through PayPal.
So the net amount will be $30.36 for both.
Christmas shopping done!
This one is a pretty misleading announcement, since I’m buying for just one person this year: my Mom.
I’m pretty weary from running around trying to get things I want/need for the party — and to coordinate getting some repairs done. And of course, it’s not a cheap process either.
So I asked Pirate Party Guy if we could agree to no gift exchange. He said absolutely. His schedule is pretty hectic this time of year, and the end of the year causes a lot of stress for everyone in his department at work.
That was a load off my mind (and budget). Then Mom very subtly alerted me to Cinemark discounting its gift cards by 20%.
A movie gift card is my usual go-to for her. It means she gets something enjoyable without clutter, which she’s increasingly trying to avoid.
And since she and her friend go see movies on the cheap days, she can tell herself (as I tell her) that the gift card is supposed to defray the cost of indulging in kettle corn. So if she doesn’t get kettle corn, she’s basically using it wrong.
Anyway, point being I don’t have to worry about any more gifts. Woot!
That’s about all of the deals I got. What deals have you found since the sales started?