Back-To-School Savings

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Ahhh, is anyone else wondering where the heck July went? How is it August already? And the back-to-school countdown begins (yikes!). However, with school right around the corner, all you savvy shoppers will be pleased with all the sales stores are offering.

My email has been flooded the last few days with sales and coupons for back-to-school deals. I, personally, much like many other students, need to stock up on notebooks, pencils, pens, note cards, Red Bull – you know, all the essentials to get you through those classes. Where to start?

Staples is my go-to place for school supplies, especially around this time of year. Their sales are amazing. Where else can you get note cards for $.48, a pack of five mechanical pencils for $1, or $100 off a laptop? Their notebooks and binders are also priced right for a college student paying for all of their own supplies.

Need some cute clothes for those days you actually feel like getting ready for class? Or maybe a pair of rain boots to navigate through a rainy city, like Pittsburgh (like me)?

Check out Kohl’s and Payless for awesome deals. Right now, I have a 25% off coupon for Payless (no exclusions) and a 20% off coupon for Kohl’s (includes all sales). New flats? Don’t mind if I do. A new bag to carry all of my books and supplies? Yes, please.

And let’s not forget some food to keep our stomachs full so our brains can stay focused on economics or some other subject just as riveting.

A lot of local grocery stores around me are running specials on items that would be good to toss in your backpack and eat between classes, like granola bars and bottled drinks.

Browse Groupon, too, if you get a chance! If you enter the town you’re in, it’ll bring up a lot of great offers on food places in the area to save you a few dollars.

School Supplies: Check. Cute Clothes and Accessories: Check. Food and Drinks: Check.

Now, get out there and get saving! And enjoy the remainder of your summer vacation!

 

 

Computer Crashing

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I’ve been having issues with my laptop running slow, and then it didn’t want to run certain programs, and then it didn’t want to do anything at all. Does this sound familiar? Unfortunately, although I come from the age of technology, I have no clue how to fix my own computer when it starts acting up.

Simply trying to restart it a dozen times doesn’t usually fix the problem, sadly. Wouldn’t it be great if it was that easy? So, after debating throwing my laptop at the wall out of frustration, I decided I should probably reevaluate. My laptop holds my life – my blogs, my school work, all the pictures I’ve ever taken, etc.

I try to back my computer up regularly, in case it were to majorly crash at some point. Even though I had all of my files, I still had no clue where to start to make my laptop work better – or at all. I debated going to Geek Squad at Best Buy, but like most college students, I don’t have unlimited funds, and it probably would have cost more than I wanted to pay.

Here’s the great thing about living in the age of technology – you can find anything on the internet. It’s great; kind of scary at times, but great. Lucky for me, my boyfriend has his own desktop computer, so I was able to use that, with much, much help from him, to find out what was going on with my laptop. Turns out, it was pretty much screwed. I didn’t pay attention enough to realize that my anti-virus was out of date and I had some malware issues. It was a goner, or though I thought.

Across the span of a few days, and a lot of arguing and annoyance, we got my laptop up and working again. It’s actually working as well as it did when I first got it.

Moral of the story? You know it connects back to savings. If you’re comfortable trying to fix your computer yourself, go for it. It’ll save you a pretty penny and give you a sense of accomplishment. You can take that $300 you’d probably save by doing it yourself and spend it on important college items – you know, like ramen and sweatpants.

 

Top Five in the $5 Movie Bin

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Have you ever dug through the $5 DVD bin at your local Walmart? You probably push through a bunch of movies that you’ve never heard of before, or movies that you’ve seen that left much to be desired BUT if you just keep digging, you can strike gold sometimes.

Now that I’ve had some free time (since we got all moved in and I’m off school until the end of August), I like to watch movies when I have the chance – and I don’t like to pay a lot to watch said movies.

Here’s a list of the top five titles I’ve come across in the $5 bin.

5: Cruel Intentions

Yes, this gem was in the $5 movie bin. I can’t help but love how delightfully twisted this movie is, and the ending gets me every time.

4: The Bourne Legacy 

I’ve enjoyed all of the Bourne movies up to this point, so I was a little surprised that the most recent Bourne movie was in the bin. Hey, I’m not complaining though.

3: 13 Going on 30

You’re lying to yourself if you say you don’t enjoy this movie. I love Jennifer Garner and how sweet and funny she is in this piece about finding yourself and the rush to grow up (and the hopes to be young again after growing up).

2: Snow White & The Huntsman

This was another movie I was a little surprised to find in the bin, but again, I’m not complaining. Although this movie didn’t get the best reviews, I enjoyed it. I mean, hello, look at the star studded cast.

1: How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days

I don’t care if I’ve already seen this movie ten times, I will watch it again, and again, and again. It’s humorous and sweet. The chemistry amongst the cast is undeniable.

After you find something decent to watch in the $5 bin, hop on over to the $1 candy bin, and find yourself a snack to munch on while you’re watching your movie.

What gems have you found in the $5 movie bin?

 

Fun, Affordable Hobby

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I want to apologize for being M.I.A. lately; we just moved at the beginning of last week and I’ve just been settling in and getting back into the funk of my daily routine.

Now that I’m all settled in the new house – despite some little bumps in the road that come with moving – I wanted a hobby to fill a bit of my free time, on days that I don’t have work and have all of the housework done, all of the errands done, etc.

Sometimes hobbies can be costly, and I don’t have a whole lot of money to spare, like many other people my age. I wanted a hobby that would be fun, creative, and therapeutic. I chose crocheting.

My mother taught me how to crochet years ago, but I didn’t have the attention span at the time to sit down and actually complete something – like a scarf or a blanket.

Yesterday, I scoured the local Jo-Ann Fabrics for yarn and crochet hooks and was pleasantly surprised to find hooks and yarn both on sale at the time. I got three bundles of yarn and three crochet hooksI only spent $10.50.

I’m starting simple by doing a scarf – but there’s so many possibilities. Want to start crocheting? Here’s a great video to show you how.

 

Dorm Seating

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This is a follow up on what you need for your dorm, because dorm rooms are usually so stinkin’ small that you don’t even have breathing room.

I came across this great tutorial on how to make a crate seat out of a basic plastic storage crate.

Making one of these seats is easy and affordable – you’ll be able to do it at home in a snap.

Check out the full tutorial by Ginger Snaps, here.

Old Love

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I was going through my emails, and came across one from Old Navy that said it was offering 20% off your online purchase – so I figured I’d browse. I was pleased when I got onto the website, and saw that their summer dresses were on sale starting at $15 – it’s too hot to wear pants at this point in the year.

How cute is this Women’s Jersey Tube Dress? Light and airy for summer.

A girl can never have too many flip flops – I mean, we need to have a pair in every color to match all of our cute summer outfits, right? You can get flip flops in an array of colors at Old Navy for $2.50 – you can’t beat that.

Hop on over to Old Navy for cute summer essentials on sale and everyday steals.

Time to Stock up for Dorm Living

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Today, my baby cousin graduates from high school. Three years ago around this time, I graduated from high school and started stocking up for my dorm room. I was lucky enough to receive a scholarship that covered a good amount of my dorm essentials – or what I thought was essential to my dorm room. I bought a lot of stuff that was unnecessary or cluttered my very small closet – ahem – I mean dorm room. So, save yourself the money and the headache of trying to fit everything in your tiny dorm room and follow these lists of dorm essentials and where to find them.

This list by Our Family World is spot on. It lists all of the must haves for a dorm room.

This list by Strong Like My Coffee has a lot of great ideas for food and ‘dorm kitchen’ essentials. It lists foods that are great to have on hand and healthy for you.

Just some personal advice from me:

1: Storage bins are great – great for packing and great for storage purposes – get the ones that are thin and can fit under your dorm bed but still hold a lot.

2: Get things that hang on your wall or door – avoid items that clutter up your desk or the tops of your dressers. Get hooks that hang over the door for some extra hanging space for clothes and art work that hangs on the wall to dress up your room.

3: Rugs, rugs, rugs – I don’t know about other colleges, but the floors at Point Park in the dorms were just kind of gross. During freshman year, my roommate and I both had rugs at our bedside. Not to mention, it adds a little bit of color to the room to add to your personal style.

Now, where to look for dorm essentials:

1: Ross Dress for Less – my personal favorite. You can find a lot of dorm essentials here, if not all of them. I picked up bedding for my dorm room for $20 and bath towels for a few dollars each.

2: Walmart – I got my mini-fridge, coffee maker, and eating tools at Walmart for great prices. After doing much research, they had the best prices on appliances for my dorm room.

3: Target – be cautious when going into Target, because they have a lot of adorable things that you could put in your dorm room and you will put it all in your shopping cart. But, once you gain some self-control, you can find some cute artwork and lamps for your dorm.

I hope this information helps! Happy Friday!