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Blog: Pam's Pennypinching With STYLE

Pam's recounting of how her ancestrally thrifty habits have helped her in modern life in ways none of her foremothers could have imagined!


Showing 12 posts in the Freebies category for this blog.
Freebies
Monday, November 01, 2010

#1 Thanks for all the nice feedback.  Begonia - your reading group sounds wonderful! So many kids could benefit from that sort of concept.  my husband is restricted by the Calif. standards, which can be a pain in the neck & I don't think the kids are any smarter somehow.  He has kids with special needs reading text books that would have been advanced for me in high school.  As I recall in 6th grade we were memorizing rivers and lists of products from countries! And this is still considering that so many kids here are Eng. language learners....for them it's vocabulary in all their courses, which the teachers don't get.  My brother, Rick Munro has had great success in Bakersfield in history with lots of emphasis on TERMS...& as for most language learning - ugh!!

#2 CARMEX has made me part of their blog squad!! & they sent me a very nice packages of all their new products, as they are developing the brand beyond the lip balms we know....

They even have a tinted lip ultra hydrating lip balm - which I really like - very moisturizing. (Altho the colors are very muted - great for growing girls, I would think.) And the new healing cream is also a winner....I use it to moisturize my hands & it actually works very well - better than 95% of the other creams I have used....

#3 A GIVEAWAY!!!!

Carmex is nice enough to sponsor a giveaway for my readers - Do you hear that out there???Just email me at pamphyila@yahoo.com before 11/14 - with CARMEX in the heading with your name & address & I will put your names in a hat & send the winner off to Carmex & THEY will send off some Carmex product(s) to you!! 

I don't normally do this - but occasionally being a blogger has its benefits! We will see how it goes. Life continues to be an adventure.

 

 

 

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Freebies
Monday, November 01, 2010

#1 Thanks for all the nice feedback.  Begonia - your reading group sounds wonderful! So many kids could benefit from that sort of concept.  my husband is restricted by the Calif. standards, which can be a pain in the neck & I don't think the kids are any smarter somehow.  He has kids with special needs reading text books that would have been advanced for me in high school.  As I recall in 6th grade we were memorizing rivers and lists of products from countries! And this is still considering that so many kids here are Eng. language learners....for them it's vocabulary in all their courses, which the teachers don't get.  My brother, Rick Munro has had great success in Bakersfield in history with lots of emphasis on TERMS...& as for most language learning - ugh!!

#2 CARMEX has made me part of their blog squad!! & they sent me a very nice packages of all their new products, as they are developing the brand beyond the lip balms we know....

They even have a tinted lip ultra hydrating lip balm - which I really like - very moisturizing. (Altho the colors are very muted - great for growing girls, I would think.) And the new healing cream is also a winner....I use it to moisturize my hands & it actually works very well - better than 95% of the other creams I have used....

#3 A GIVEAWAY!!!!

Carmex is nice enough to sponsor a giveaway for my readers - Do you hear that out there???Just email me at pamphyila@yahoo.com before 11/14 - with CARMEX in the heading with your name & address & I will put your names in a hat & send the winner off to Carmex & THEY will send off some Carmex product(s) to you!! 

I don't normally do this - but occasionally being a blogger has its benefits! We will see how it goes. Life continues to be an adventure.

 

 

 

 

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Counting the Freebies
Sunday, October 24, 2010

Just thought I would tell you all that in the last few days I have received these freebies:

  • Traditional Home magazine
  • Sample of Crest
  • Pro-Health Clnical Gum protection
  • Covergirl lashblastlength mascara
  • Sample of Murad Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisturizer
  • Strivectin -SD Intensive Concentrate for Stretch Marks & Wrinkles  (generous sample tube)
  • Sample of new WISK detergent

You see I usually concentrate on health & beauty items, as I get the best deals here. Mostly from freestufftimes.com - I am connected with freestufftimes.com on twitter now, which helps because the freebies seem to go so QUICKLY now!

I am also now getting the Wall St. Journal delivered daily for, I believe 6 months - It's not all about stocks & finance - I enjoy the "liberal arts/cultural" parts a lot.

As I have said before, I am also receiving lots of free magazines - I lose track of them!  But I see a FORBES, a COSMO, an ELLE and PEOPLE WATCH. (title?) Not only do I enjoy reading them, but I also pass them along - a box is going to hubby's school for art projects and so on! Lots of great pix to cut  up.

More on freebies later this week - I got a big one & want to devote an entry to it....

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Winning stuff
Friday, August 20, 2010

Feel sortta bad that I have been neglecting my blog - but I haven't felt too inspired - it's summertime, maybe that's it....

But I keep up on my freebies - and I have actually WON some nice stuff - One is a full-sized L'Oreal Moisturizer - and then a weird piece of lingerie which covers the gap when you are wearing low cut jeans (from the Luxury Spot) - retail = $38!!

Started to participate in a trial of dry mouth treatment - as I have dry mouth due to my medications, among other factors - & they sent me a bottle of the product to try.

I have also been using an eyebrow serum on another trial -

If you are in an urban area like L.A. or NYC - if you are interested, check out such trials and testimonials to get nice interesting merchandise.  I get my leads in L.A. from craigslist - could work in NYC area, too...

Have not been buying much - but rather selling off vintage, giving away, having yard sales.  (Two more sales coming up in September to participate in.) But I did find a nice pair of khaki capris at the Goodwill for $3.99 & nice $.99 t-shirt and Ann Taylor ballet flats in a blue reptile finish for $3.99, too. They were all too good to pass up - And some fancy ribbon yarn(marked at $10 a ball originally!!) - I have already made a nice scarf using one color, and I am now making a sash with the black and gold and some velvety cord I picked up somewhere....Those specialty yarns are very nice used with other yarn to provide some weight and make it easier to knit.

Hubby and I have been taking advantage of all the free summer music and events.  Last weekend was Harbor Days at our marina, and they served hamburgers, hot dogs, watermelon, and soda and beer - We listened to our favorite local talent, Teresa Russell & her smoking guitar. (At the same time I discovered another book exchange at the Marina Office, which I hadn't known about & found 4 great paperbacks to read.)  And on Sunday there was another great local music at the Farmer's Market.

We have bought storage bags from the Dollar Tree in an effort to clean up this little apartment, which we have crammed with a LOT of stuff.

All the AC and fans have been on the last few, hot days - & I am grateful for the portable AC unit we found last year at Salvation Army - which just makes the difference in our L-shaped living room/dining room/kitchen area when it's really hot....And also put on fans to push the cooler air around. (Before we go to bed, we can turn the AC off &  turn on the window fans to cool off the apartment overnight, as it always cools off at night here.)

Still getting loads of free magazines - just signed up for SAILING magazine for hubby - and little lotion samples keep coming in the mail.  I have found that the samples are great for keeping in my purse to use on my hands - and I put the shampoo/conditioner samples in my "hair" kit for using up at the boat....The other facial care samples go into my "skin" kit.  I especially like the eye cream samples, which I am using up very carefully...Luckily just discovered another little Clinique sample among my stuff....I first put on a bit of witch hazel and THEN the eye cream, which makes even a sample packet go for almost a WEEK.

I carefully close the sample packets by folding over the top & closing with either a paperclip or a hair clip (or even a bobby pin).  That way they don't dry up before you use ALL of the sample!

So even when broke, I can keep up my "beauty routines". No excuses now ladies! The face you save today you will be the one you are left with! 

So onward & upward.  How is the summer treating YOU all?

 

 

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Software Giveaway
Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Here is a link to Giveaway of the Day - which offers free downloads daily - (otherwise they cost $) - http://www.giveawayoftheday.com/youtubeget-497/

Today it's a simple download for YouTube videos, but they have something different every day - but ONLY for the day.  This software, for example, they say would otherwise cost $29 (??)

 

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Books & More Books for Summer Reading!
Friday, June 27, 2008

I am a voracious reader (that is, I read a LOT) and am always running out of books.  I have to have a stack on hand so that I know I always have reading material, because I go a bit buggy without it.

Now, I am a great fan of public libraries myself, and have used them since I was a little girl and there was a library around the corner from my elementary school.  But nowadays in L.A., there are no branches directly in my path, and - alas! I discover that whenever I take out books, I seem to incur hefty library fines.

So I prefer to have my own stacks of books.  I have outlets to get them - various 2nd hand book stores and library sales, where I stock up - and some thrift shops which I comb for mysteries and the like (I found a 3 volume set of the essays of the French philosopher Montaigne at my old ladies thrift shop this time, along with the pulp fiction, for my more elevated reading.)

But I am always hunting for new outlets.  I had a pile of mysteries I was trying to recycle, and I saw that there was a book exchange at the Santa Monica Emeritus College office, where I have my scene class.  So this time I brought 2 bags of paperbacks, and didn't feel guilty when I took a stack in exchange.  Some nice British mysteries there - someone has the same taste as me!

I also just ran across a new source of online books at http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu  which seems to be at the University of Pennsylvania library.  It has a collection of curiosities which tickle my fancy - including a collection of women's biography and literature - all the queer old books I look for in 2nd hand book stores.  But here they are online - GRATIS! 

Trouble is, I have a problem reading books from my computer terminal - so I decided to try to download a book to a CD and read it on my husband's laptop. (I like the idea of the handheld devices - but whew! $300??) I copied the book, the Memoires of Mme. Figee-LeBrun (a female French painter, who did portraits of Marie Antoinette) to a text file, and then saved it in Word on my hard drive.

THEN with a little help from my husband (actually he did it), and with the software to burn DATA cds, we burned a CD - which THEN I put on his laptop and started to read propped up on the bed.  I could even enlarge the print to make it easier to read!  Voila! a 250+ page book for the cost of a cd - almost gratis!

We have another old Apple laptop which my husband uses for games for his pupils - and we will try to find some WORD for that so I can use that as a computer reader, too! (And I won't have to worry about my husband's laptop from work.)

Now I am looking forward to reading through the collection at the U. of Penn online.  They even have a group of old etiquette books, and I always find those fascinating! Not so good for the beach, perhaps - but maybe for the beach HOUSE?  And I can't read on the beach anyway! Too much glare.  Give me a porch.  Happy reading!

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Treasures from the Trash
Wednesday, June 18, 2008

My scavenging post from yesterday has somehow disappeared - but I wanted to share that I scored yesterday in the alley behind where I had an appointment in the Valley.  Good neighborhoods have the best trash - and I sighted a charming Japanese faux bonsai with green glass leaves and white glass blossoms on top of the trash next to a nice basket (very clean).  I took them home, washed them and tweaked the position of the wired leaves and blossoms and now have a lovely faux bonsai which will survive being in front of a window fan.

I also spotted a white Ikea-like tall skinny shelf unit set out for the trash down the street.  It was grimy and might need re-painting, but basically solid - and I could use it in the reorganization of my bedroom storage - so, I hoisted it in the trunk sideways, and secured it with the nylon tie-on my husband leaves there for just such occasions. (It wouldn't fit in the back seat.) And then I went home slowly on surface streets, watching to see if it shifted. (It didn't.)

Did I mention the foam container with a cover  that I had found over the weekend?  They use them to send steaks and so on - and they make wonderful little coolers to put in the trunk or backseat of the car to keep groceries from melting/spoiling in the heat if you have to leave them in the car a bit or on the way home. We put our farmer's market fruit in it, to keep it from getting mushy on the hot drive home. 

The organic fruit from the Sunday Market is great.  It's the only way I can eat fruit such as nectarines or peaches or even cherries without getting an allergic reaction to pesticides normally used.  And we could actually EAT the local tomatoes, too!

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Look up Your Veterans!
Friday, May 23, 2008

www.ancestry.com is offering free access to military records until the end of the month of May (2008)!  It's a way to get you to come to the site  - and there are charges for full services (& a 14-day free trial).  But I spent a pleasant afternoon wandering around the military records - And found a card for my grandfather the steelworker (with his signature & old address) - but not for my father the Lt. in the Transportation Corps - or a second cousin who won a purple heart!   But it was fun looking. 

And I started to fill in what I know of my family tree.  That doesn't cost anything  - and you can invite other members of your family to contribute, too.  I am trying to encourage my brother, the family historian to add his information! And as it's all online, it's easily shared...And you can even add pictures and stories.

Happy Memorial Day!

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Freeware to the Rescue!!
Saturday, April 05, 2008

My other hat is an actress one & yesterday I had to make a last minute submission for a character in an animated cartoon - I decided to submit an MP3 file rather than rush over there - so I tried the new voice recorder my husband got - to no avail - and them resorted to the little voice recorder that comes with the computer.

But it turned out in a WAV file (the big ones) & I had to convert it to an MP3 to send it in via email.  SO - I looked up some conversion FREEWARE, and found a FREE convertor - after some downloading, it was converted and sent in by the deadline.

So FYI - especially in an emergency, there is FREEWARE and SHAREWARE out there for your computer.  There are lots of free programs, just for the download (altho be careful, some of them are just samples you can use once or twice). 

If you are cautious, you might check out the reviews on some tech sites - they have listings of the best free/shareware - And Google now has a whole suite of sortware it offers with its gmail -

So, especially if you are on a budget - check it out before you BUY. My husband insisted we get McFee anti-virus, but there are other FREE programs out there, which seem pretty good.  (I do do so much surfing, that I have to be careful...) There is even free photo software - one is Picasa (part of the Google pack)- the other one escapes me at the moment.....I will try to remember it for you.

 

 

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Samples and Such
Friday, December 28, 2007

I just got another skin care sample of Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream through the Vocalpoint program on the net. (See www.vocalpoint.com)  Olay is very generous with its samples of the new products.

I also have a couple of samples of L'Oreal shampoo/conditioner/treatment I just got from a freebie site. (I like Freaky Freddie's.)

And the piece de resistance - I have been given a Sonicare UV sanitizer for my Sonicare toobrush to kill the germs on my toothbrush.  It's so easy to use, and it's great to know I am killing more bacteria that could affect my teeth and gums! This is through the buzz campaign at www.buzz.com where you are given products to try and talk about. I have gotten several things - the last one was some Aveeno moisturizer.  And both that and the sanitizer were almost a $20 value...Great deal.  Great products.

Capitalism does have its advantages.  Sampling is one of them.

Happy New Year!

 

 

 

 

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Better living through Freebies
Friday, August 31, 2007

Well, it's the financial dog days of summer for me & my husband - it's the teacher's way...So I am trying to make little bits of money, as every bit earned/not spent counts right now. 

Found out from one of my online news groups that the Emeritus College of Santa Monica College has FREE classes, and specifically an acting class, which came recommended - so I drove over to register asap.  Even the parking is free! It's really meant for seniors, but they don't mind if you aren't, if there is space in the class.  I have been wanting to take a class for a while, but the budget has been too tight.  So, I jumped at the chance.

Also found some free/cheap yoga/exercise/dance classes I am going to visit (on craigslist). 

And I put together a video "reel" of myself (I am an actress, therefore the penury) on jumpcut.com, a FREE video editing site, just acquired by yahoo.  I downloaded a music video I was in from the net, and added my pix & edited it.  There was a learning curve, but not too steep, and I have something that will serve, as I don't have the hundreds of dollars for a real reel! I posted it on my myspace page (look for Pamela Munro under profile) and as a first effort, I am quite proud of it!  Anything I can do myself...Even this would have cost a bundle, if I had paid for an editor's time...(Should be fun for home movies, etc., too).

Also knocked off some short articles for associatedcontent.com -see me at www.associatedcontent.com/pamelamunro (I hope) and look under my content...all about pennypinching - freebies, etc. I certainly have my head filled with them.

Actually worked as an audience member on a game show - slumming, sort of - but we are so broke, and it was an afternoon paid in their A/C - & it's hot out there right now.  Look at my article on being an extra (I should have called it just being on a set)...because if I hadn't brought my own drinks/lunch, etc., it would have been an unpleasant afternoon - as there was none of that there!  The only thing I forgot was a visor - as I had to spend some time out in the sun at "lunch" - but I used my newspaper to cover my head!   As it was, it was much more amusing that I had thought it would be & there I am out in the "universe" "perpetually" as the sign said as we entered in the back of all those blinking lights....

We did splendid music in honor of our pastor's anniversary of his ordination...Mozart, Handel, an acapella spiritual - and I held up the alto section (it's my karma) - and played my recorder in a lovely trio of soprano/alto/and harpsichord.  Those sounds were made for reach other.  The music director is such a good musician, and it's so satisfying to pull off those beautiful renditions of such gorgeous music...I learn so much every time. 

For those worried about the lack of a music program in the schools, if you don't mind the religious content, one place to get it nowadays is in a church music program.  There is usually the choir - and our church has a bell choir, just right for beginners.  And there are other musical opportunities.  The churches have historically been the greatest supporters of musicians, and that tradition continues today...

Take a look at my associated content article on freebies.  Writing it I realized that I certainly have gotten a lot of free stuff in my life! All those fillips really cheer one up!

Have a great holiday - we will be at the boat!

 

 

 

 

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Freebie Queen Goes on about makeup, jewelry & other girly stuff
Wednesday, June 13, 2007

My whole life is a bargain and everything I have has a story to it. I have all sorts of cosmetic and health samples, which I use for weekend traveling/presents/and when I am running short...I also carry around the little sunblock samples so I can reapply when I sweat it all off...and offer some to my husband...The little containers are so nice for your purse or makeup bag, so you don't have to carry a whole one!. (That's why they make nice gifts for frequent travelers.) 

My oh my I just got a to-the-door-delivered sample from a cosmetic co. on the net complete with tissue paper and a lovely gift bag.  No wonder it's so expensive.  If any of these cremes/lotions were drastically better than what I use, I would.  But there is not that much difference.  Altho I did get some Avon samples at a farmer's market, of all places, and at the prices the face creme was selling at, I would buy it next time.  But I had just gotten some fancy face cream at 1/2 price at the health food store.  (Not to mention other samples...I look for them when I go.) 

It helps to go window shopping when you are in a drug store, say, to pick up a prescription, and then you have a better idea what a good deal would be elsewhere.  I actually have gotten a lot of nice skin/eye treatments from our 99 Cent store.  There is a local brand that must sell off ends or something to the store - I stock up when I see that - & it can keep me going for MONTHS. 

And if nothing like that has come along, I can always go to buymebeauty.com and buy some eye cream from THEM at a good price. 

I suppose bargain hunting does make you slightly impulsive - as I do pick up things - I have to confess I actually ordered a ring from the Home Shopping Network site...omg...I don't know how I ended up there, but there was a very inexpensive gold-washed silver ring with an artificial alexandrite stone in it - & I have been searching for something like that for a long time, so I snapped it up.  Alexandrites have a color shift, depending on the light - and go from green to purplish - This one looks lovely.  I will tell you when I get it.  This is a case when artificial stones are almost as good...real alexandrites have gotten pricey & the man made ones are so pretty...

I do have some jewelry & everything there has a story, too. I have picked up nice pieces for good prices at gem stores and craft faires...pieces for $40-50 that would cost $200 or more in an L.A. boutique...(in the boutiques you are paying for someone else's taste, and the decor...) And these are pieces with real semi-precious stones...From the time I was a girl, I have loved amethysts, and garnets, and carnelian and rock crystal  and amber and the like- none of it too expensive - but it's real and classier than costume stuff...

I have silver jewelry from when I was a girl and girls wore silver becaz it was inexpensive - but with the price of silver, that is now longer the case!  I get all sorts of compliments on an Indian bracelet I inherited from my mother  with a turquoise...and I have other silver pieces I inherited/kept - including my silver charm bracelets...

Cocktail rings go in and out of style - & I have an old one with an amethyst I have to break out - and another one with garnets...I do think that real jewelry is a nice gift for a young girl, to try to educate her tastes, and give her something good to wear.  I always try to give the girls I know who are graduating, etc. a nice piece of "real" jewelry...Often it's not that much more expensive than the costume stuff!

It's funny how life sort of winnows down the pieces you actually wear daily.  But I feel more special when I put on my special jewelry for a special occasion...I have a lovely necklace that was a wedding present  - I wore a $7 linen dress & this lovely necklace! 

And all these pieces can be passed down, too.  It's nice to have family things.  It give you a sense of continuity - I have pieces I have my grandmother gave me - 20's costume jewelry - which started my whole taste for old costume jewelry.  It used to be cheap but no more!  I grab up pieces I can afford now, and even get things to repair.  I figure I will sell it all off when I am an old lady & go get out much any more! In the meantime, it's a hobby as well as something to wear.

I say all this because I don't think glamor or girly stuff should be ignored when penny pinching!  I always have good/formal clothes on hand for occasions that come up - so I don't have to run out & buy an expensive outfit.  No one has to know the cinnamon linen dress came from a thrift shop in Pasadena!  Or the designer satchel was a gift from a friend who is a travel writer, who got it as a freebie on a travel junket to Paris! I might tell every one the story about how I got the turquoise bracelet after winning $200 on the slots just before leaving Vegas - but that's different....(& it was, as I mentioned before, a bargain, anyway!)

I see reading glasses for $17.99 in the store & shudder - when I get mine at the 99 Cent store! Maybe they are vaguely recognizable - but I always lose/break them, & they take the strain off my regular prescription ones!  Now that I am getting so blind, I have them in every room to read labels, etc.  And I also stock up on sunglasses there (with UV tags, too)...I lose/break them at an alarming rate, too.  (And those Jackie O glasses that P. Hilton etc wear are just too much for me.  Imagine that much for sunglasses!)

A friend interested in fashion trends sometimes accused me of being too plain - but I like to start that way and then have the options of dressing up with accessories...Her way was to get a lot of knock-offs and get rid of them regularly.  I prefer to get basic things of good quality that I like/suit me and wear them to extinction!  I have pieces left from high school!  But it's fun to look at the trends - there is so much on the web, one can almost do without fashion magazines anymore....

Of course, I am in L.A. - and the fact is I spend most of my time in jeans and tshirts!  And I have several pairs of sneakers for different uses/occasions...and hoodies and so on.  But one has to have stuff to drag out to make a personal appearance - depending upon where you are going & the people you are seeing...But I don't want to dress like an eternal teenager - it's so aging, for one thing.  I see women dressed like their daughters, and it doesn't flatter them. We have to grow up and accept this womanly thing. I struggle with that in the land of youth and sunshine here...And I guess, the jewelry & the nice purses do help!  And my self skin care has kept me skin nice enough for compliments & that's without spa treatments, too...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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pamphyila (Contact)
L.A., CA USA
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