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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 7 posts from September 2010 for this blog.
Read It Forward
Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I've already mentioned Random House's great Red It Forward Program (at www.ReadItForward.com) from which I have diligently applied for advance copies of their books.  I have received a few, but the best so far is THE IMMORTAL LIFE OF HENRIETTA LACKS by Rebecca Sloot - I am a liberal arts sort of person - but even I could follow & enjoy the incredible story of how the cancerous cells of an African-American woman were taken by Johns Hopkins unbeknownst to her and used to create the HeLa cell line which is used in medical research all over the world.  This real life story reads almost like a thriller!  I urge you all to take a look at it!

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Treating Myself
Thursday, September 23, 2010

Off to a dentist appointment yesterday and to sweeten the deal, hubby dropped me off at the local (Pasadena) Salvation Army, which has GREAT deals - & gave me a $20 budget.

I shopped and shopped & came in right under budget & got:

  • a beautiful Indian (??) tunic of light wool, with hand embroidery - for $5
  • Some baskets for $.89 each
  • Books for $.50 per paperback & $l for hard back + $ - One was a very old children's reader which I bought because the pictures are so lovely!
  • A plastic woven tote  which I can stand up & use in the living room for extra papers.
  • What looks like a 70's heavy vinyl ORANGE bowling all bag! for $3 - It's made out of that vinyl that seems to be immortal - & whew, the bright orange of it! (In a vintage store that would be at least 3x as much....)
  • Some long bobby pins - labeled as pins for rollers??? I picked up several & then asked  an employee how much they were - they were so cheap, that I went back to get them ALL, I couldn't find them! Someone else must have grabbed the rest - a thrift shop lesson!
  • A gorgeous fine leather, small Italian wallet (That was worth the whole haul & my little money pouch had had its day.)

Somehow, all the shopping carts & baskets for the store have disappeared, so I "borrowed" a large tote to carry around my purchases in - & then transferred everything to the baskets & the orange tote! Whew, the place was really trashed - as there had been a Sr. Citizen sale the day before - But there were obviously still treasures....

The Salvation Army has an "antique" store around the corner from the regular one - but shoppers there & I have chatted about the weird way they designate some items as more valuable - and that there are better deals in the regular store!  I have only bought things at the other place on SALE.

To complicate matters, somehow I had left my reading glasses at home & all I had were a pair of old glasses that I have resurrected & one of the lenses fell OUT! I sat on one of the sofas (they have a lot of furniture there) & rifled through my purse - but no dice - Then I recalled where I had first taken out the glasses & sure enough, found the lens on the carpet in front of the totes!

I secured the lens in the wire frame with a safety pin - but luckily the eye doctor is in the same building as my dentist, so I asked them if they would please replace the tiny screw for me, which they did - grand, I could see!

Have a commercial audition today - & Yours truly wants to make some $$ - Did get the check for my Orazyme participation - Always nice to have a bit extra....I had had to spend $50!! to put up my video on a casting site.  Luckily I was able to make the 59 sec, video with Windows Movie Maker - so at least I hadn't had to pay an editor a few hundred to do it....DIY pays off.

And knowledge is power & all that - no?

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Life Goes On
Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Cloudy here in L.A. (it does happen) - What a cool season we have had so far (fall is often the hottest time here).

Touching up my few grey hairs at my temples with hot black coffee - read on the internet that the caffeine in the coffee is good for stimulating hair growth - Anyone hear of that?  Also read that you might add some powdered clove to the hot coffee...haven't tried that yet.  I am trying to put the coffee on my eyebrows with a cotton swab to see if anything will take...

Oh What’s in a name? A free handbag, that’s what! I just entered @handbagheaven’s Name It To Win It giveaway. http://bit.ly/9vbJGV   Me <3 giveaways

Me <3 giveaways & the more I enter, the more I win! Let me remind you to keep checking www.freestufftimes.com for stuff. (free stufftimes is also on twitter for faster access to new offers.) I am ordering posters for hubby school.  So far I have ordered ones for cheese, pole vaulting, the ocean environment, fitness for kids and head lice!

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Psst!
Monday, September 20, 2010

I have a secret - I made a mistake at the thriftshop last weekend, and when I went home, I discovered that the nice pair of black jeans shorts I had bought actually had a stretch maternity panel which somehow I had missed when I did my over-the-pants pants thing to see if they would fit....!  But waste not want not - so I decided to wear them around the house with tshirts that covered the "maternity" part.  And do you know what?  They fit great! I get the snug fit around my thighs, but I can still sit for a long time at my computer comfortably. 

It made me wonder why clothes designers had never considered that we are all slightly irregular! There doesn't have to be stretchiness all over - just in the tight bits.

(It also helps that anything for a mother-to-be has probably not been worn too much.....)

I work at home, so I am goping to wear these a LOT....But only you & I know, right?.  Who said that we had to say the unvarnished truth about EVERYTHING?

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Psst!
Monday, September 20, 2010

I have a secret - I made a mistake at the thriftshop last weekend, and when I went home, I discovered that the nice pair of black jeans shorts I had bought actually had a stretch maternity panel which somehow I had missed when I did my over-the-pants pants thing to see if they would fit....!  But waste not want not - so I decided to wear them around the house with tshirts that covered the "maternity" part.  And do you know what?  They fit great! I get the snug fit around my thighs, but I can still sit for a long time at my computer comfortably. 

It made me wonder why clothes designers had never considered that we are all slightly irregular! There doesn't have to be stretchiness all over - just in the tight bits.

(It also helps that anything for a mother-to-be has probably not been worn too much.....)

I work at home, so I am going to wear these a LOT....But only you & I know, right?.  Who said that we had to say the unvarnished truth about EVERYTHING?

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EZ Furniture Finishing
Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Hubby found some nice raw pine shelving left out on the street for garbage day - which he rescued. After spraying it for bugs & leaving it out in the garage for a few days, we brought it in & I decided that being broke, I would again apply my ultra-inexpensive furniture finish - Plain baby oil!

I have done it once before on an oak cabinet I was given years ago - and the finish has stood up well.  It's not shiny, but rather a matte finish  - but it brings out the wood, which I like & it's CHEAP & NON-TOXIC!

You just have to apply until the wood won't absorb it anymore! Don't know how many coats I have put on - but I have been doing it for 2 days, and it's almost done. It's great, because I could work with it in the living room, without fear of fumes or much mess...Good for any child's room, I would suspect....You have to have plain, unfinished  wood to work with first, though...I like even cheaper wood myself rather than laminate.

The pine has darkened to a honey color - which I prefer, actually - a few nails & it will be ready to install.  Don't think you can paint over it easily - but you could always sand it down....

Cost - ZERO  - due to FREE shelving + baby oil I had on hand -

I like that sort of project!  .

P.S.   You can also use baby oil to touch up/refresh the finish on your other furniture.  Wood is from a living thing & it needs some nourishment every once in a while or it will have a tendency to crack....

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Thrift Shop Sales!
Monday, September 13, 2010

I have been really cutting down on my thrift shop shopping, as much as I enjoy it - we are on unemployment & so very BROKE. But I did allow myself some shopping at a very cheap Goodwill - And they were having a sale of pieces of clothing for $.49!  They usually have a nice dollar rack we look at. But this is even better!

Hubby found  pair of khaki slacks for work & a golf shirt (ditto - and I found some very nice tshirts - originally quite pricey!) - But the piece de resistance was the cream silk Ralph Lauren shirt for - yes - $.49!  That I couldn't resist.  For once the few paperbacks I picked up were less than the clothes!   

If you find a thrift shop that has a dollar rack, make a point of sifting through it every time you visit.  Over the weekend I was wearing my nice light yellow denim jeans jacket - which had been - yes again - $1!!  Other thrift outlets also will show a tendency to go low on some items - like jewelry & the like - so check out those items, too.  I also picked up a very nice barrette and a comb with pearls -  It's amazing how much hair goods can be outside of thrift shops & dollar stores....So if I see a $6 headband, say for $.99, I don't hesitate to get it.

So however broke one may be, one can afford some little niceties which make Life a little less grim - that & my free fashion mags, and the nice free brochure/catalog I picked up at  H&M - allows me to think fashionable - & trust me, a fairly fashionable dame has a much more positive outlook!

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Author:
pamphyila (Contact)
L.A., CA USA
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