The Hidden Safe Place Mystery Update

The Hidden Safe Place Mystery Update

Photograph Credit: Microsoft Images

In preparing for our school year, I was gathering our curriculum. Knowing we had the second grade Bible cards that my son used two years ago, I searched for the hidden safe place I put them. After going through our home, I came up empty.

Not wishing to give up too soon, I reached out those who I have exchanged or borrowed books from to see if I accidentally gave away our cards. When all the reports came back, I was left without the set of 32 cards.

In using time wisely, I cut my losses and purchased another set. Though I hate spending money replacing items I know I have/had, I needed the cards and invested the $20 into another set.

Now, some would not bat an eye at spending $20. However, it pained me to spend money on another set, but I had exhausted my options. My daughter needed these cards for 2nd grade, so the purchase was made.

I would love to find that hidden safe place. If those cards are in our home, then I’ve found the perfect hiding spot because I can’t find it. But if the cards were borrowed, then I hope that they found a good home and get lots of use.

Besides the thrill of having all the curricula gathered, I love the new cards. These are laminated which is an upgrade from the prior version’s cardstock paper. I’m thrilled with the better quality for the same price.

In using time wisely, sometimes making a purchase (even if it is a replacement) is the best use of time and resources. I’m not constantly looking or searching anymore which is a welcome result for our mystery.

If those original cards surface, then you will get to read a third installment. In the meantime, we are using our new cards without regretting purchasing a new pack.

Question: What have you replaced after searching without success? 

Sunoco: The FREE Fuel 5000 Online Decal Hunt

Sunoco: The FREE Fuel 5000 Online Decal Hunt

Photograph Credit: Sunoco

Though I don’t have an affiliate relationship with Sunoco, I am a customer and receive periodic e-mails from a loyal reader about Sunoco offers and deals.

If you have seen the Sunoco decal on my right sidebar, you might wonder why it is there. Well, this summer Sunoco is hosting the FREE Fuel 5000 Online Decal Hunt.

Since I have posted about Sunoco offers in the past, a Sunoco Representative sent me an invitation to participate. As I would love for one of my readers to win a prize from this promotion, I gladly registered and posted the decal to my sidebar.

Combining our Fuelperks! along with the savings at our Sunoco station, we are able to stretch our dollars at the pump. Though I have not been grocery shopping at Bi-Lo in quite some time, I still have this money-saving strategy in my arsenal.

If you want to post the Sunoco logo to your Facebook, Twitter, or blog, then feel free to click on the decal for more information. I will keep the decal up throughout the promotion which ends on August 31, 2013. Happy decal posting!

Comment: Please let me know if you win a prize. Good luck!

Mellow Mushroom: Back to 1974 Prices – August 20, 2014

Mellow Mushroom: Back to 1974 Prices – August 20, 2014

Photograph Credit: Mellow Mushroom

If you are a Mellow Mushroom fan, then make room in your schedule for a visit this Wednesday.

In celebration of their 40th birthday, participating Mellow Mushroom locations are rolling back a few menu selections to 1974 prices on Wednesday, August 20, 2014.

The prices and menu selections include:

  • 30¢ – Coke products
  • 75¢ – Michelob, Budweiser, or PBR
  • $2.50 – small cheese pizza

In addition to the menu savings, Mellow Mushroom is hosting a contest with a prize package of a trip for two to Amsterdam. With each Mellow Mushroom location equipped with an in-store display of the first Mellow Mushroom location, customers can pose and capture their image.

To enter the contest, upload your photo to Instagram tagged #40YearsBaked. Without an Instagram account, upload your image to this special page.

In using time wisely, check for your local Mellow Mushroom’s participation. Give yourself time to enjoy the event as it may be well attended.

Happy 40th Birthday, Mellow Mushroom!

Guest Post: Inexpensive vs. Cheap: A New Commitment

Guest Post: Inexpensive vs. Cheap: A New CommitmentAs a researcher, I love the topic Keith Benton brings to Using Time Wisely. Before purchasing items, I read reviews and compare models to determine the best product that will meet our needs.

Sometimes we need a device with all the bells and whistles, while other times a basic version will suffice. 

During this stage, I am weighing  inexpensive vs. cheap. Keith gives helpful information regarding the differences and making choices. I hope you will have a better understanding of these two terms after reading his explanation.

Upon deciding which model will work the best, then I start searching for deals. Sometimes, I have to wait a bit, but the deals do come. Happy wisely choosing! ~ Tracy

Inexpensive vs. Cheap: A New Commitment

Guest Post: Inexpensive vs. Cheap: A New Commitment

Photograph Credit: Microsoft Images

The influx of large discount department stores has raised new concerns for their shoppers. More and more people are faced with the question: “Am I getting a cheap or inexpensive item by shopping here?”

This has become a valid concern for many because there is a significant cost difference between cheap and inexpensive items.  One item may provide you with short-term savings, but cost you a lot in the future, and vice versa. To know the difference, let’s define inexpensive and cheap.

The Difference

For me, inexpensive has always meant the object (food or material good) costs less compared to other items of similar quality. An example of this is carrots. I have gone to two different grocery stores on two different occasions and found the price of carrots fluctuated significantly. One store carried the same bag and brand of carrots for $1.39, and one had it for $3.10. Since the quality of the carrots is the same (same expiration date), I would consider the $1.39 bag of carrots relatively inexpensive.

Cheap to me has always referred to the quality of an item compared to its price. Let’s look at one example I recently encountered.  A few months ago I had to purchase new running shoes. My old shoes had lost their tread and cushion. Blisters were on their way if I didn’t buy new shoes.  Instead of sticking with the brand of running shoes I always bought, I decided to branch out. I bought a different brand that cost $10.00 less.

After wearing the new shoes for two weeks, I had already worn out the tread, blown out the side of one of the shoes, and torn the laces. My last pair had lasted over two years! Why?  Unlike the carrot example, the shoes did not offer the same quality at a discounted price. They weren’t inexpensive; they were cheap.

They were discounted because they were made of a brittle material and not the same material as the good pair of running shoes.  A poorer quality material usually costs less to manufacture. It is imperative that you determine the difference in quality and price before you buy.

Commit: Save Money and Time in the Long Run

So, why consider inexpensive vs. cheap at the store? Buying inexpensive items can save you time and money in the long run as compared to cheap items. This holds true for services too.

Commit to changing your mind set when buying or hiring goods and services. When there is only 24 hours in a day, the last thing you want to do is waste time buying and repairing goods that should have lasted in the first place.

I have included a list of simple inexpensive vs. cheap items/chores to help you start thinking about differences in items and services. This list is not always true or accurate, but was designed to help you start considering the differences in goods and services when you shop. Happy shopping!

                          Inexpensive                                             Cheap

            (Discount Price & Good Quality)                  (Discount Price & Poor Quality)

Good Condition Brand Name Jeans from Thrift Store Thinly Made Jeans at New Cost
Ingredient Rich Bulk Section Dog Food Ingredient Poor Bagged Dog Food
Discount Carpet Cleaning Service Replacing your Carpet With New Thinly Made Material
Buying an Xbox 360 on Craigslist with Games and Controller Buying a New Xbox with No Games and No Controllers
Yard Sale Titanium Mtn Bike Aluminum Mtn Bike Brand New

Keith Benton is a writer and researcher for everything home improvement. He spends his time educating and advocating that individuals take time to improve not only their home, but their life.

JCP Optical: $30 Kids’ Glasses through September 15, 2014

JCP Optical: $30 Kids’ Glasses through September 15, 2014

Photograph Credit: JCP Optical

Due to a change in our eye doctor’s location last year, we had a number of issues with our eye insurance company. Though we worked out the details and received all our benefits, we did not have our eye exams until August.

Usually seeing our doctor at the beginning of the year, I was learning the sale schedules which I found much better during the summer. Choosing to keep our eye appointments around the same time, I scheduled both Mr. 9 and Miss 7’s appointment for the end of July.

They both did really well having their eyes dilated and wearing their snazzy glasses for the afternoon. Once again, Miss 7 has perfect eye sight.

Mr. 9’s glasses are doing well, and he had a very slight change to his prescription. Since we can continue to use his 2 pairs from last year as backups, we only need one pair of glasses for him this year.

As I considered where to purchase his glasses, I started with JCP Optical where we found the best deal last year. Once again, I was thrilled to find a similar deal. Though $5 more than last year, I still find $30 a great deal for a quality pair of glasses.

With our insurance company reimbursing for any pair of glasses up to $120, we will be purchasing a pair of the $30 kids’ glasses soon.

$30 Kids’ Glasses

The $30 Kids’ Glasses promotion at JCP Optical continues through September 15, 2014. This offer includes any kids’ frame up to $120, FREE impact and scratch-resistant polycarbonate lenses, FREE UV protection and FREE eyeglass protection plan for any school-aged child 16 and under.

With only a tweak in Mr. 9’s prescription, we will have 3 pairs of glasses for him to use. If he had needed a brand new prescription, then we would choose to purchase two pairs at this price. We would only get reimbursed from insurance for one pair, but $30 for a second pair is worth the cost should he break the first pair.

TRACY’s NOTE: The FREE eyeglass protection plan means that you do not have to pay extra for the protection. However, should the glasses break and you need to use the protection plan, there is a $19.99 deductible for each repair.

This is why we chose to purchase a second pair last year to have an immediate backup. Our JCP Optical would need to send the glasses away for repair leaving the wearer without a pair of glasses.

While stretching our dollars, we will purchase the $30 kids’ glasses for Mr. 9. Upon receipt, I will submit to our insurance company for reimbursement. In stretching our dollars, JCP Optical helps us get the needed equipment while staying within our budget.

In using time wisely to research our options, I’m thankful for JCP Optical’s $30 Kids’ Glasses promotion which continues through September 15, 2014. Happy savings!

Question: Where do you find deals on vision care?