The Creative Princess: November 2012

Monday, November 26, 2012

Black Friday Recap with Sam's and Starbucks

Monday, November 26, 2012

#cbias
So, unless you live under a rock, you know last Friday was Black Friday.  Right?  Right!

I can't tell you how many years I have been shopping Black Friday but, it has been a few years.....or so. For me, going out on Black Friday is a tradition. Our core group consists of my mom, two aunts and one of my aunts sister-in-law's, oh and of course myself.  This year we literally shopped until we dropped. We started at 7:30pm Thursday night and 14 hours later, we were done! The pic below is my aunts Yukon, PACKED with our finds.
#cbias
We had a TON of fun! We figured out we do not shopping Black Friday on Thursday because the men and teenagers are out. Let's just face it, most men are NOT fun to shop with.  The night crowd was a LOT grumpier than the morning crowd.

As we were winding down our shopping marathon we decided to head to Sam's. I had read a few weeks ago that Sam's Club would be offering a FREE Delicious Pairings Breakfast to their Black Friday shoppers!  You KNOW my ears perked up when I saw the FREE part! The pairing consisted of Starbucks Holiday Blend Coffee, Artisan Fresh Cinnamon Rolls and fresh fruit.
#cbias
We had a bit of a hard time finding where they were doing the #DeliciousPairings event. There were no signs for it to be found!  While we were looking I headed to the Bakery department to pick up some cinnamon rolls for later in the weekend.  My mom and aunts actually found the event while I was checking out some pots and pans. It was located in the VERY BACK of the store in a little corner. There were a few people in front of us in line so we waited just a bit then we were handed a FULL SIZE cinnamon roll and a nice full cup of coffee.  They had a cute little display set up on the table. I hope Sam's was able to sell a ton of Starbucks coffee and Artisan Cinnamon rolls because of this event, it helped sway me to purchase them!
#cbias
 The coffee was WAY too strong for my taste, so I picked up a bag to brew myself at home. My mom said she was expecting it to be more like a flavored coffee, that would be great to see more of from Starbucks!
#cbias
I don't like my coffee strong so I did not follow the package directions.  My cup turned out GREAT! I could taste the orange and cinnamon undertones. Some of the other flavors included in the coffee are nutmeg, cloves, ginger and pumpkin. I normally do not purchase Starbucks Coffee to brew at home and only get their mixed drinks at their retail locations. I was pleasantly surprised at how good my cup of coffee was.
#cbias

The cinnamon roll was really good!  They are HUGE! They are the perfect combo of sweet and spice and the dough is so good, the middle is the perfect gooey-ness you expect from a cinnamon roll.

I know the event is over but you can still find the Starbucks Holiday 2012 Blend and Artisan Cinnamon Rolls at Sam's Club!  Be sure to check them out the next time you are in, you won't be disapointed!

I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias®  #CBias #SocialFabric


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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Giving Thanks

Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Thanksgiving
I am sure you have seen them, those "Thankful" posts all over Facebook. Every day. A lot of my friends are posting them, I am sure a lot of yours are as well {if you aren't doing it yourself}.

Me? No, I did not partake this year. Why? Well, you know I can hardly remember my own name sometimes, what makes you think I could keep up with posting my thanks every day? This is why I also do not participate in those "Photo a Day" things on Instagram.

Anyway! Back to my point.

The "Thankful" posts sure do let you see deep into how your friends really are don't they?  Yeah, the first week or so is full of being thankful for family, friends, God, etc. That is just a given to me though. 

I LOVED that one of my friends put that she is thankful for her washer and dryer, without it she would have to wash by hand. Would you want to do that? I know I wouldn't. We tend to forget the every day things that get us through life easily to be thankful for.

Another friend posted one of those e-cards about "What if you woke up tomorrow and only had what you thanked God for tonight?" Really, do you take the time to thank Him for even the little things?  We get so busy in our day to day to really stop and be thankful for some of the little things. Like socks, shoes, ponytail holders. I know, ponytail holders.  Seriously, without them MG would get all kinds of things in her hair. Plus, I would be really hot while I clean the house.

What about those, sometimes annoying, sounds your children make? What if your child was not given the gift of a voice?  Or what if it was taken away? Oh how you would miss those, sometimes annoying, sounds they make.

I know some of this is silly but I hope it got you thinking. I hope you take the next few days to really look deep, and be truly thankful for all of those big, as well as little, things in your life. I have learned over the years (especially this year) to not take those things for granted, you never know when they will be taken away. 

I hope you all have a WONDERFUL Thanksgiving and a fantastic weekend.  I love you all and you really have no idea how thankful I am of each and every one of you, yes YOU!

With all my love,
~B

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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Learning to be Energy-Efficient | GE Light Bulbs| Save Energy

Thursday, November 15, 2012
As part of my partnership with GE, I received coupons for my GE light bulbs. All opinions posted about my GE Lighting experience are my own.
#cbias, #GELighting, Walmart
Did you know that in January new legislative changes will go into effect that will change what light bulbs can be made and sold?

"Normal" incandescent bulbs will go out the window and you will only be able to find CFL, LED, Halogen and maybe one or two other varieties. I know I was heartbroken when I found this out because I like the cheap incandescent bulbs. They work, they light my room, the only thing wrong with them is how much energy they use.

Don't worry, you DO NOT have to throw out all of your incandescent bulbs you have now. There are actually a few incandescent options that will stay around for a while longer. These include 3-way blubs, appliance bulbs, some decorative options and reflectors.
 A few days ago, while Mads was in school, Hubby and I packed up MG and headed to Walmart to check out more energy efficient lighting. As I turned the corner to the lighting aisle I was shocked at the selection! There were TONS of different energy saving light bulbs and wattage's. "New" stickers lined the aisle, much more than I remember the last time we were shopping for light bulbs! 
#cbias, #GElighting, Walmart
 I wanted to checkout the new Energy-Efficient Soft White bulbs from GE. They are the closest option to incandescent bulbs. The fact they they use 28% less energy than "normal" bulbs is great! While they don't save as much energy as CFL blubs, they are a great alternative. While at Walmart, we picked up a few other energy efficient light bulbs and headed home. I wanted to get the girls involved and to teach them why we are switching all of our light bulbs and to teach them how they can be more energy efficient.
To start the project, I let them color pictures of light bulbs, we cut them out, then glued them on a tri-fold board. Next, I asked the girls which light was brighter, I had them look at two lamps that had different GE light bulbs in them. I also asked which one they thought made the room look better. Over the next few months, we will be using an energy savings calculator to learn which uses less energy. In January I plan to do a follow up post to let you know what we found out, so stay tuned!
 You can learn more now by visiting GE's website, Facebook and Twitter.

Be sure to also check out my Google+ story for more info on my shopping trip.

I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and GE Lighting #CBias #SocialFabric All opinions are my own and those of my family.

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Relaxing Before the Holidays with a Spa Party

Monday, November 12, 2012
#NIVEAmoments, Sam's Club, #cbias
Over the weekend I got a few friends together for a Spa Party. I thought it would be nice to just get together before the craziness of the holidays starts and enjoy some great food and just relax.
#NIVEAmoments, Sam's Club, #cbias
Before I could have a party, I needed supplies! I like getting most of my supplies at Sam's. Their prices are great and I can get everything I need in one stop. You can see my entire Sam's Club NIVEA moments trip here

I knew I wanted to have a spa party and I knew what food I needed. While shopping I checked out the selection of Sam's Club lotion. I was surprised at the value of the NIVEA at Sam's Club! I had checked the prices at my local Walmart a few days before so I knew what to expect. It was nearly $1 cheaper to buy it at Sam's!  AWESOME!
#NIVEAmoments, Sam's Club, #cbias
I ended up making homemade sugar scrub and bath salt and purchased some other homemade goodies from friends. I also picked up some other great NIVEA products. 
#NIVEAmoments, #cbias, Sam's Club
For our food (because what party of mine doesn't include food), I made Spa Water, Mini Fruit Pizza's, Caprese Salad and Cucumber and Strawberry Sandwiches.

We had such a great time at the party! The girls liked the NIVEA Essentially Enriched Lotion, they felt it was light and very moisturizing. The majority did not like the scent though. But, we are a generation of heavily scented lotions.
#NIVEAmoments, #cbias, Sam's Club
 My sweet friend Natasha was not able to attend the party. So, after it was all over I packed up a plate of food and a few sacks of goodies and took it all to her!  It was a party to go! She sent me pics later of her using some of the products, she is so funny.

Be sure to check out NIVEA on their website, Facebook page and on Twitter! If you would like to see even more AMAZING Spa Parties, check out this Pinterest Board!

I would also LOVE for YOU to join me for the #NIVEAmoments Twitter Party! Come join the fun on December 4th at 12pm CT!

I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This content has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Beiersdorf for NIVEA.  #NIVEAmoments #CBias #SocialFabric


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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Did you see? Pinterest has Secret Boards!

Thursday, November 8, 2012
Totally not even kidding you!

Ask and you shall receive?

Yes!

As I was looking up Free Printable Labels on Pinterest tonight I clicked over to my "Following" page and saw it.

To the left.  There was a little box that said something like Pinterest now has Secret Boards. Try it now!  Oh my gosh!  OK!
All you have to do is click on "Boards" in your profile then, scroll ALL THE WAY DOWN the page and.....

BAM!

Each person is allowed 3 "Secret Boards".  Just click on one of the boxes to create a Secret Board.

From there, just enter in all your info.  You CAN invite people to pin to this board, just like all other boards, but remember.....they will be able to see what you pin to this board.

So why have a secret board?

Well, so I can plan parties for my family/friends without them seeing the direction I am going!

To pin gift ideas.

So people don't see all of your craziness.

While you are there, remember to follow me!


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Monday, November 5, 2012

I was on the news!!!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Did you see my post last week or my post on Facebook about being interviewed by Lindsey Henry with Joplin's Fox 14?  If you missed it, don't worry!

You can find the interview here!

It was a lot of fun, and a little nerve-wracking. I have been interviewed about couponing before, but never for TV news and never IN MY HOME! 

Lindsey set me at ease by telling me how warm and inviting she thought my house was, then she sat back on the couch and asked a few questions. It was so much fun and after a few minutes it was like talking with a friend. 

I made one flub when I said Texlas, or was it Telxas, instead of Texas.  HAHA! That is so much better than what I feared I would do. I am so thankful my friend Sarah sent my name to Lindsey's producer!

If you have ANY questions about the interview or about coupons in general feel free to ask. I am more than happy to answer {almost} any question you may have. Just ask in the comments section below.

Here are some of the sites mentioned in the story:

Also, be sure to check out my Top 10 Black Friday Tips and Tricks!


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Saturday, November 3, 2012

Green Mountain Coffee Giveaway WINNERS!!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

The Winners Are....
All winners have been notified!

Be sure to keep an eye on the blog and follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, more giveaways coming SOON!

I am a BzzAgent and was provided with these samples and coupons. All opinions are my own. 

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Friday, November 2, 2012

Top 10 Black Friday Tips and Tricks

Friday, November 2, 2012
Money, Saving Money, Coupons, Deals, Christmas, Thanksgiving
**This post has been updated for the 2013 Black Thursday/Friday Tips, be sure to check it out!**


Are you ready? Do you get out in the craziness that is Black Friday?

Black Friday to me is a tradition. I love getting up and going shopping with my mom and aunts. It is rare I actually purchase anything, except when we go to Bath & Body (that is when I stock up). Over the years I have become more aware and have been taught some awesome tips and tricks to help get through the craziness that is Black Friday.  Here are my Top 10 Black Friday Shopping Tips!

1.) Start NOW! It actually is NOT too early to start shopping, it isn't too late either. Did you know you DO NOT have to get up at 3am to get the best deals on your must have items? It may be beneficial to you to keep a list of items people want/need and shop for them all year. This will allow you to get THE BEST deal!

2.) Add Items to Your Cart NOW! I just got word that Kohl's will offer their deals online starting at 12:01am WEDNESDAY November 21st!  That is two days before the in-store sale starts! Amazon is also one that starts their sale early. They actually have a week long BF sale!  If you see something on a site that you just can't live without or you think someone would LOVE, put it in your cart NOW! This way, when the BF sale goes live you can get it before it's gone!

3.) Avoid the Crowds This pretty much goes with #2. Most stores put their sales live online before the sale goes live in store. This allows you to get exactly what you want, at home, stress free, in your jammies!

4.) Earn Money While You Shop! Shop through a site such as Swagbucks, Ebates or any other "extra deal" sites. You will receive a percentage back on your purchases when shopping through these sites, this allowing you to put some extra $$ in your pocket!

5.) Sign up for Swagbucks! Since we are on the subject, sign up for Swagbucks.com! Use them EVERY TIME you search for something! I also use them anytime I go to ANY site, even if I have been to that site a million times.  Want to check in on Facebook? Search Facebook on Swagbucks first! Why? Because you can earn points when you search! You can then turn those points into all kinds of things, my favorite is Amazon gift cards. There are also a ton of other ways to earn points while you are on Swagbucks. I paid for nearly all of our Christmas last year with the Amazon Cards I earned!

6.) Follow Black Friday Sites! Want to see the Black Friday ads early? Maybe you want to be among the first to know when stores offer special deals? My favorite sites are Black Friday at GottaDeal.com and BFAds.net. Be sure to follow them on Facebook as well!

7.) Set Google Alerts! If there is an item that you just HAVE to HAVE set up a Google Alert for it and be alerted when it goes on sale!

8.) Use Coupons! Unless specifically stated you CAN use coupons/coupon codes!  In fact, a LOT stores put coupons out specifically for Black Friday! Some stores even allow you to stack your coupons for this day ONLY! At Bath and Body Works a few years ago we found about 6 coupons that we were able to stack and save TONS of money!  It was seriously a ridiculous amount that we saved. Last year I noticed they changed their policy and did not have near as many coupons out. Use sites such as RetailMeNot.com to check for online coupons codes!

9.) Get Free Shipping! You can sign up for a 30 Day Trial at FreeShipping.com! If you plan to shop online I would sign up here, work it to where you are covered for the entire holiday season by waiting just a few days before Black Friday to sign up! You can also sign up for a free trial of Amazon Prime and receive FREE two day shipping for a month! At the end of your trial you are able to purchase Prime for a year for $79. However! You can split this with up to 5 people! That's just over $15 each for the year! If you use Amazon a lot, that is totally worth it! Plus, you get other benefits with your membership...not just free shipping.

10.) Get the Lowest Price! Isn't that what it is all about? If you are shopping online you can use sites such as PriceGrabber.com to make sure you are getting the lowest available price.

These are just a FEW of the great tips and tricks out there! Be sure to keep an eye on MoneySavingQueen.com, she shares TONS of tips and Hot Deals!!!!  Also, keep an eye on the Forums while you are there! There will soon be a section just for Black Friday deals!

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Thursday, November 1, 2012

Lightened-up Copycat KFC Coleslaw Recipe

Thursday, November 1, 2012
Weight Watchers, Points Plus, pts+
Mmmmmm....I LOVE KFCs Coleslaw!  I mean LOVE it! It is the perfect creaminess, sweetness, crispness!  Growing up I LOVED when we had KFC, my meal consisted of potatoes and gravy, a chicken leg, biscuit with honey and a boat load of slaw.  To this day, it is my go to comfort meal.

But, after looking up the nutrition info, I kind of fell out of love a little bit. Goodness is it loaded!  I decided right then I was going to try to lighten it up a bit.  The results? Totally worth it and awesome!

Lightened-up Copycat KFC Coleslaw
Adapted from: Food.com
Serves 8
2 Points Plus per Serving

Ingredients
14 oz Packaged Coleslaw Mix - Chopped
1/3 Cup Sugar
1/2 tsp Salt
1/8 tsp Pepper
1/4 Cup Skim Milk
1/2 Cup Fat-Free Mayo
1/4 Cup Buttermilk*
1 1/2 Tbsp Vinegar
2 1/2 Tbsp Lemon Juice

Directions
Take Coleslaw Mix out of bag and chop.
Place remaining ingredients in bowl and mix well.
Add Coleslaw Mix to Dressing and stir to coat.
Cover and place in fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Serve chilled.

*For my "Buttermilk" I used the fake buttermilk. Place a Tbs of vinegar in measuring cup then pour however much milk you need to get desired amount of "buttermilk". I used skim milk I had on hand and it worked perfectly. This helps cut down on so much fat, plus it is rare that I have actual buttermilk on hand.

Weight Watchers, Points Plus, Pts+


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