Incidents of an aimless mind.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Sephora Bonus

Use coupon code: SK6PH at Sephora to receive a 1-oz. Deluxe Sample of Philosophy Hope in a Jar (a $30 value) for free with any purchase. Plus, look for the Clinique Lip and Pencil Sharpener for $1. Free shipping on orders of $50 or more.
Use ebates and get double cash back right now. That's an additional 8%!


Upgrade Your Windows: Updated!

As in Microsoft Windows.
Right now you can pre-order Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium edition for $49.99 with free shipping from Amazon.
This is a 58% saving off list price.
Due out Oct. 22, 2009.
Update: If you have a Micro Center around, you can pre-order for $10 less, check here for locations.
-Thanks Kristen!


Friday, June 26, 2009

Linea Pelle: UPDATED

The maker of some of the finest leather products I have ever seen is having a sample sale today. -Thanks Paula!

Be sure to utilize the Linea Pelle referral program to receive up to $50 in store credit.

Use Ebates for 5% cash back.

GOOLP15 for 15% off any purchase
CJLP15 for $15 off an order over $100
CJLP10 for 10% off any order

*there is an additional automatic $15 dollars taken off all sale items*


Beyond the Rack Blowout!

This Sunday and Monday Beyond the Rack will be having a huge sale on sunglasses, shoes, bags, watches and apparel. So, basically everything! Prices will be marked down as much as 90% off original retail.

Use the code: NJP79089C5E if you don't yet have an account.


Stretching Your Grocery Dollar: Part 2

I'm sure it's no secret, I love coupons. Clipped coupons, coupons from those blinkie machines, internet coupons...I have no bias. They are all wonderful to me. However there are a few things to keep in mind as you accumulate these little money vouchers.

Do you actually use the product? Don't bother with coupons for products you don't use, ultimately it is a waste of money if you end up using it and a waste of time if you don't.

Having a coupon does not require you to make a purchase. Unless you REALLY need it now or (preferably) it's a really good deal, go ahead and let it expire. No harm done.

Buying two bottles of that dressing? Use two coupons! When the coupon says "one coupon per purchase" what they mean is "one coupon per item purchased." This is why I buy 3 Sunday papers a week.

Stacking coupons! Keep an eye out for store coupons. You can use them in combination with the manufactures coupon.


Stretching Your Grocery Dollar: Part 1

This is the first of a multi-part series in which I want to share my strategies for saving money on your grocery budget without sacrificing the quality of the products you buy or the foods you eat.

Many of these tips may not seem ground breaking...unless you are anything like I was. For me they were earth shattering. As a workaholic and a party girl my fridge was always empty. Food was eaten at a restaurant or picked up on the way home. I really couldn't even begin to tell you how much we spent monthly. Talk about ground zero!

Fast forward a year or so and things look VERY different. Like many people, we are operating on half our previous income and struggling with debt. This has meant a lot of re-evaluation in regards to our priorities as well as our lifestyle.

Here is what I've learned...


Thursday, June 25, 2009

Shoes, shoes, shoes!

Didn't find anything at ALDO? No problem! Check out the spring sale and clearance at and use code: SMART for an extra 20% off sales items AND 10% off regularly priced merchandise. Free shipping and returns on all orders.


Redken Hair Color

Be one of the first 2,000 people to sign up here to receive a free sample of Redken Blonde.


Summer Bliss

Use this buy one, get one free coupon at Jamba Juice and indulge with a friend.

Flying solo?
Say the word of the day: SNORKELING for a $1 off a blueberry bliss smoothie.


Just Another Day in the Life

Today, when I came home from the store, there was a goat in my front yard. Yes, that is what I said… a two horned, split toed, gray, bleating goat, that for some reason decided my boys were its new BFFs and proceeded to follow them everywhere they went. This, of course, was completely distressing to my 3 year old border collie who, while possessing the necessary herding instincts, lacked the benefit of any actual experience. She, therefore, proceeded to take advantage of the opportunity by chasing said living, breathing farm animal round and round the house in an effort, I suppose, to regain some respect for her lineage. While the goat, who clearly was not used to being subject to such base treatment, finally found safe haven on my back porch, nose to the door, pleading for entry (leading me to only speculate as to the goat’s previous place of abode and the habits therein…).

From there, the instinctual help from her ancestors seemed to abandon my worn out, panting border collie. Or perhaps, she simply decided that herding in 90 degree plus weather was just not what it was cracked up to be. Either way, the staring contest commenced between goat and dog and continued until animal control (which consisted of guy down the street coming to put animal in truck and find it a home) arrived to spring the poor goat from a seemingly irresolvable conflict. While my border collie marched into the house with her head held high as if she had just herded South Fork’s entire stock single handedly, I contemplated why this was possibly the best part of my day.

I knew the image of my overweight dog chasing that wide eyed goat around and around my yard would be a source of laughter for me for a long time to come. And of all the gifts in this life, the one I most cherish is the ability to laugh and find the humor. When I can laugh with my boys, I am happy. When I can invoke my husband's laugh, I am blessed. When I can laugh instead of cry, I am saved. And, when I can make others laugh, I am truly the luckiest person in the world.


Barnes & Noble Blow-out!

Books starting at $.90! Over 25,000 books at 50% off or more. Use your ebates account for an additional 4% back on your purchase.


Aldo Shoe Sale

Up to 80% off at ALDO's use code: 5489548 to view the sale. Plus use code: 22040422 to receive an additional 10% off with free shipping. There are many pairs to choose from at the $20 price point with this deal!

This pair is only $21.58 after the 10% off!


Get a $25 gift certificate for $2 using the code: DISH. Check for participating restaurants in your area.


C&C California for the 4th

It just keeps getting better! Through the 4th of July take an additional 40% off all sale and clearance items by using code: JULY409.

-Thanks Paula!


E.L.F. Cosmetics

Short for Eyes, Lips, Face, E.L.F cosmetics is turning five and to celebrate they are offering half off their mineral make-up plus a $5 gift card with any purchase. Use code: 5FOR5MINERALS


Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Test out EcoSmart organic pesticides.
Check the bottom of the page for the link


Kiss My Face

Sign up here for your free sample.
*Make sure you check your email to confirm your sample*


Do you know denim?

If you don't, you MUST meet the Denim Debutante. A true fashionista with a degree in denimology. Not only does she know the in's and out's of every pair under the sun, she also knows where to find them at insane discounts. Nervous about buying jeans on line? Never fear, she's got your rear. She has successfully fit women of all ages and sizes into their perfect! She is just that good.

Using the online chat you can receive a recommendation in a matter of minutes or if you prefer privacy you can e-mail her at denimdebutante(at)gmail(dot)com. Be sure to check her site daily for the Denim Deal of the Day as well as tips for the hottest ways to wear your denim for a killer look. Jeans and a tee shirt have never looked so good.

As a bonus, thought July 15th enter for the Napoleon Perdis compact giveaway. Just tell the Denim Debutante about your dream jeans and how you would use the make-up palette to highlight that pair.


Outdoor Adventures

I've been an outdoors girl from the word go. Perhaps it's the mid-west roots, the sunny stint in California or the years in the wooded PacNW. Ultimately I say it's my mothers doing. She is an adventure seeking sports nut! A woman on the go. I highly suspect she thought me numbers early as a child to prep me for keeping the softball score book. A task I can still accomplish in my sleep.

Having inherited her, "I wanna try" attitude it's not surprising that there is little in the sports world I haven't given a whirl. From climbing mountains to cave diving I've done it. Amazing? Absolutely! In fact some people will tell you that these extreme versions of outdoor activity are the "only way to go." However, there are significant cost associated with these adventure sports. Truth is, you can be equally awaken to life simply by going for a walk down the road.

So often we often forget to open our eyes, our ears, our noses. Perhaps we are conditioned to our cubicles, cars and treadmills. Head down and eyes forward, but amazing things will happen once you brake that gaze into the abyss.

I was reminded of this the other day as I did my daily walk down the road. Just another normal day for little Reuben and I. We went by the house with the barking dog and down the hill down past the middle school where kids playing baseball as we always do. However as we neared the house were the horses live something caught my eye. Two deer standing right on the other side of the road.

As the four of us stood there staring at each other, I couldn't believe I'd nearly walk past them with out seeing them. What else had I missed? Almost as an exclamation to my thoughts, I watched as five cars obliviously drove between us. Eventually the pair turned to leave and Reuben and I walked the remaining 50ft before turning home. Both of us still watching the spot where the deer had just been as though the spot itself were magical. Perhaps, for me it was. I suddenly felt more alive. I didn't need special equipment or an exotic location. I simply went outside and paid attention.


Glidden Giveawy

Paint your world pretty...for free!
Head to tomorrow, the 25th, pick your color and submit your order form to receive your free quart.


Tuesday, June 23, 2009

J. Crew Blowout

Through the 25th, J. Crew is having a final sale event, up to 70% off men's and women's wear. If you are spending over $175 use the code: BEACH to receive free shipping.


Kashi Coupons


Double Cash Back

It's all about beauty at Ebates today! Check out their double cash back deals: Crabtree & Evelyn - 12%, Sephora - 8%, Lancome - 12%, Vitamin World - 10%, Gaiam - 10%. Don't forget to check their list of coupons if you are placing an order!


Leather Liquidation

Wilson's is clearing inventory, up to 75% off, plus receive an additional 25% off one item. Discount will show in your cart. Grab this Steve Madden bag, originally $118, for under $30.



Free sample of Colgate Maxfresh.


Monday, June 22, 2009

Be sure to check out for their new listings. Here are some highlights:

$5 off $25 at Rite Aid
$1.25 off DiGorno flatbread pizza
$1 off Aleve
$1 off Elle magazine
$1 off Listerine
$1 off Scotch-Brite cooktop starter kit


Savor the New Moon

That's what Dagoba Chocolate wants you to do and they will give you free chocolate to prove it. Be one of the first 2009 people here after the new moon appears in Dagoba's home of Ashland, OR and you will get a coupon for a free organic chocolate bar.


Going Bananas

I adore an over-ripe banana. Slightly odd considering that I don't care much for them in their ripe and edible state. My heart races the yellow skins begin acquiring brown spots. Every day asking my husband, "you don't want to eat those, do you?" Signing inside once the answer is finally "nah."

Why this strange affection for what most would label trash? Aside for a fondness for a hearty slice of banana bread, this rotten fruit is also wonderful amendment to your garden soil. They are filled with potassium that plants need to keep there immune systems up and overall health strong. Simply break the soft banana into 2-4 pieces, peel and all, and bury under about an inch of soil near the base of your plants.

I discovered this tip three years ago in an issue of Fine Gardening and have been using it ever since. My roses have no fear of black spots on their pretty leaves.


Stay Tide-y

With a free sample of Tide Total Care.
Plus a coupon for $1 off Tide To-Go and
$1.50 off Tide Stain Release, in stores next month.
Just head over here.


Shopping Sample & Private Sale Sites

Most of you know who I am. My name's JP, and I'm the Denim Debutante. I have what some might call a fetish for jeans. I own many, love all... but, more than anything, I really like finding great deals on them. That's what my site's about-finding awesome deals on amazing, long-lasting, high-quality items and helping you become more knowledgeable about those things you call jeans.

Tammy already did a number on what it's like to hit up sample sales in NYC... and she's a lucky one for being able to live in a city that has all those options.

Most of us aren't living in LA or NYC, though. Some of us, like me, are smack dab in the middle... and you can't really enjoy the wonders of stumbling over a Rebecca Beeson or J Brand sample sale. It's just not how it goes.

But, for us, there are Sample Sale and Private Sale sites. And, there's a specific trick to shopping them, especially if you're fond of getting things like... say, some denim.

1. All of the bigger sites offer a credit... and most are $10 and up per referral. That's right; if you refer a friend to one of the sites and she ends up buying something, you've automatically earned yourself anywhere from $10-25 to spend... for doing nothing more than giving them a link to click on. There are HUGE financial benefits to this!

2. Save up your credit for something you REALLY want/need. Just because you've got that $25 sitting in there, waiting for you to spend it, doesn't mean you have to do it right away. Case and point: I, pretty much unknowingly, accrued $75 in credit to Billion Dollar Babes from friends making previous purchases. Friday came along, and they had an insane Kasil sale (which you heard about if you regularly frequent my Denim Debutante site or Minnow's Pond). I ended up snagging two pairs of $200 jeans for $14... with shipping. That's about a 95% discount!

3. Know your style! Once again, I know they've got damn good deals on those sites. They're insane sometimes, and even I struggle to say no every now and then. But there are some things you need to ask yourself before you click that Buy button:

a.) Will I wear this?
b.) Does it match anything I already own?
c.) Can I afford it, or do I just want the great deal?
d.) Do I really love it?

Answer all these questions yes? Then own it. And do so fast... odds are, someone else wants it too!

4. Don't forget about shipping! This is a cost that most people just don't remember to factor in. Whether you're buying from a site that offers you a base level of shipping no matter how much you buy (like Gilt) and some offer an escalating price from your first purchase. If you add this to the actual price listed and then find the percentage saved. Is it still over 50%? Then you're probably still getting a great deal.

5. Don't listen to hype! Just because someone tells you to jump off a bridge, does that mean you should do it? No, of course not. Find what you like, at the price you want to spend. Gimmicks work for fast food restaurants (and Snickers bars), not for clothing... and especially not for good denim. Don't get tricked into getting something you're only okay with... fall in love with it, or don't get it at all!

Learn, live and love these five rules, and you'll find yourself swimming in great deals... and not regretting any of them!



Morning Cup

Nescafe wants you to give them a try.
Sign up for a free sample pack of their 6 different flavors.


Just Do It

Whatever your sport, stay in style with Nike. Theirs clearance section currently has 2760 at up to 70% off and through Wednesday you can use the code: 5MILERUN for an additional 20% off.


Menu Monday

Here is the weekly plan:

Monday - Roasted Red Pepper Soup and Sandwich
Tuesday - Ribs, Potatoes au Gratin, Salad
Wednesday - Pasta Caprese
Thursday - Leftovers
Friday - Pizza, Pasta Salad
Saturday - Stir-fry
Sunday - Tacos


Sunday, June 21, 2009

California Lovin'

Through June 24th save an extra 40% on already reduce beachwear at C&C California by using the code: BEACHX40.

-Thanks Paula!


the loot

Hit up Albertson's with my list on the way home today, here is what I got for just $31.58 for a savings of 62%.

We also stopped into Safeway for peaches at $.98/lb, mango's at $1/piece, pineapple at $2.99 and the Tuscan cantaloupe at buy one, get one free. They are also having an amazing deal on Pepsi products, buy two fridge packs, get three free.


Sample Sale Scores

Living in New York City (for most of the year, at least, when I'm at school) gets EXPENSIVE. Even if you don't go out a lot, there are still grocery expenses (because you're going to get the midnight munchies, and the dining halls aren't open that you gotta have at least a little snack food sometimes, you know?), MetroCard expenses, and all those little things that add up to, well, a lot. Add that to a love of designer fashion, and you've got one hefty bill.

Not everyone pays full price for those designer fashions, though, and I'm one of those avid bargain hunters. There are very few clothing items that I have ever paid full price for - mainly because I know where to look. And, especially in such a rich shopping environment as NYC, all you have to do is go to the right places, at the right times. And, of course, keep up with
two magic words: sample sales.

New York (and Los Angeles) are fantastic sample sale locations. In New York, they are usually in the Garment District, Chelsea, or SoHo. Recently, I woke up early (really early) to catch an early train into the city, so that I could check out the Shoshanna/Anlo sample sale before going to work. Of course, my primary interest was in the Anlo denim. There were stock samples, at wholesale prices (for $65), and samples, which were $20. So, I grabbed a couple pairs that were in my size, and tried them all on.

FYI, Anlo
tends to run slightly small in most cuts (from what I learned, and from advice from the fabulous Denim Debutante). I can wear a 25, but would probably have gone for a 26. I couldn't find a particular style that I absolutely loved, though. So I looked through the samples box - and found the most gorgeous pair of light/medium wash, wide leg jeans. Only a size 25 in that style was left, and I tried it on. Perfect fit - even a little loose. The specific style that I got was the Joss Trouser Jean in Caicos wash - look it up! It retails for $204 ... but I got it for $20. That's over 90% off! There was a mark on the tag - but who cares, no one's going to see it. And, it put me in an excellent mood for the rest of the (cold, gray, rainy) day.

Some of my previous sample sale finds - they're usually better at a physical location than online, but I'll share some from both:

- French Connection skinny jeans, retail $148: $35

- Diesel leather newsboy cap, retail $40+: $1

- Diesel jeans, retail $200 or so: $5 (I didn't actually get these, my friend did. This was during the last hour of t
he sale, when they marked everything off even further. She got four pairs!)
- b. chyll cashmere scarf (online), retail $175: $25
- James Jeans 'James' 5-pocket bootcut (online), retail $242: $33

- On Gossamer bra, retail $50: $10

- James Perse button-down oxford (online), retail $165: $40

- dVb Indigo Signature Star Bootcut jeans (online), retail $250: $35
- Habitual Jeans (I actually found these at Buffalo Exchange, brand new with tags), retail $190: $35

It takes patience to snag these deals, though, and some disappointment when you can't find your size or style. When you score a great deal like these, though, it's more than worth it in the end - you'll be well-dressed, without having to pay full retail price. So bask in those envious glances. You deserve it.


A cone for Pops

TCBY is offering a free cup or cone for Dad's today.
Find a location near you.


Denim Deal of the Day

Be sure to check the the Denim Debutante for today's DDD.
She found a scorcher of a deal!


Father's Day Special

Cabela's currently has a short sleeved men's polo that is regularly priced at $19.99 on sale for $4.99, however if you are buying more than one the price drops even further. Down to $1.99! Shipping is $5.99, however there is the option of in-store pick up for free. You may find many sizes are on backorder, but at 90% off retail I don't mind waiting.


shu uemura

Last day for free shipping on any order at shu uemura.


Saks Sale

Through the 28th, take an additional 25% of Saks sales items for up to 70% off designer apparel. Use code: SFASUM9 for free shipping.
Ebates will get you 2% back.


Something about Sundays

This is one of my most treasured recipes! I found it about two years ago in an old Cooks Illustrated magazine. It gives you a french toast that has a nice crisp exterior and is custard-like creamy on the inside. Pure heaven!

What you need:

1 large egg
2 tablespoons unsalted butter , melted, plus extra for frying
3/4 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon table salt
4 - 5 slices day-old challah bread (3/4-inch-thick) or 6 to 8 slices day-old sandwich bread

What to do:
1. Heat 10- to 12-inch skillet (preferably cast-iron) over medium heat for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, beat egg lightly in shallow pan or pie plate; whisk in butter, then milk and vanilla, and finally sugar, flour, and salt, continuing to whisk until smooth. Soak bread without oversaturating, about 40 seconds per side for challah or 30 seconds per side for sandwich bread. Pick up bread and allow excess batter to drip off; repeat with remaining slices.

2. Swirl 1 tablespoon butter in hot skillet. Transfer prepared bread to skillet; cook until golden brown, about 1 minute 45 seconds on first side and 1 minute on the second. Serve immediately. Continue, adding 1 tablespoon butter to skillet for each new batch.


More Love for the Latte

Yippee! Another coupon for a free 12oz drink from Borders and Seattle's Best. This one is good through the 25th, but if you are heading in today grab this one too.

Have a mocha for me! So yummy...


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