Open House…..a guide

Oh my. Last night was the open house for my oldest child’s school. While some of it was very informative some was quite boring & could therefore be skipped. I don’t understand why they send home information about programs then talk about the same thing they wrote about on open house. The only issue I really had can not be solved & its not a huge issue so I am not concerned. All of her teachers were super nice & I am sure my child will have a great year.

Now….onto the informative side. I have some tips for people to follow when you attend open house for your child. Most people will not have any problems following the rules but there are a few that need these tips but unfortunately because I am not Dear Abby they will not read this.

Tip #1 I know retro clothes are in….but if you wore it the first time it was in fashion you are to old to wear it again. (Which is why sadly I can’t wear leg warmers again…lol) Case in point….high waste jeans…..cute when you were 20 not so cute now that you are 50. Pass them to another girl & wear age appropriate clothes.

Tip #2 Just because you can fit into it doesn’t mean you should wear it out of the house. Mini skirts & belly shirts should not be worn by most women period. ESPECIALLY when you are over 30 & for absolute sure after you are 45. Which brings me to my next tip…

Tip #3 Do not shop for clothes in your daughter’s or Lord forbid granddaughter’s closets. If you want to know why refer to tip #2.

Tip #4 I do not care how in love with your husband, boyfriend, significant other you are open house is not the time for large amounts of PDA. (I am talking about the parents unfortunately) Actually keep PDA to a minimum. Handholding is fine…..sucking face not so much.

Tip #5 Please….if you can…leave infants at home or with a sitter. It is very overwhelming to them to have 600 kids in their face, it is LOUD, & there is no room for strollers. I know when you are single its hard but if possible leave the baby at home with daddy.

Tip #6 Try to leave grandparents & great grandparents at home. Same reasons apply to them as infants. To many people, very loud, no room for wheel chairs & its fast. We had 3 minutes between classes. I found it hard to keep up so I know that some of those people were winded. Bring them to assemblies where there isn’t as much walking to do.

Hope you enjoyed reading these tips as much as I had fun writing them.
Have any tips to share?

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The Clampets survive a hurricane

So….on the 5th anniversary week of Hurricane Katrina I thought I’d write a little about my experience living through it.

The day before it was supposed to make landfall we rolled out in the early morning hours. And when I say we I mean WE. Our cast of characters included in our caravan… In the lead car was my mom, dad, & 78 y/o grandma with a bad bladder & hip, next we have my brother, his wife, his 3 y/o son, & 10 week old daughter, and 2 dogs, then we had his mother in law with her husband, 13 y/o daughter & 3 week old daughter, then we had me, my sister, & my daughter who was 6. (My husband was offshore in another country & could not come home). Also in another caravan we had about 8 more family & friends including another 3 week old who was on an apnea monitor for SIDS & a 3 month old & 2 more dogs & a cat. Yes….we were the Clampets take a vacation.

So….our caravan goes from Se La all the way to El Dorado Ark only touching an interstate somewhere past Monroe La. Oh my freaking lord we went through some pig trails.

Now my sister who is not a morning person decides to nap. Fine….good thing for you to be doing. So she gets her pillow then decides the sun is to bright so she rolls up her blanket into the window. Hello?? I can’t freaking see out my front passenger window….so I snatch it down which ensues a fight. (TOUGH) So then she complains about my music choices. (Hello….we are in the backwoods…be happy its not the theme song from Deliverance) And what is wrong with Def Leopard???

So….after getting turned around a few thousand times my brother in his infinite wisdom decides to take over as point car. He takes us to a freaking park…..along a marina…& finally back to the main highway where my dad overtakes him & regains lead. (My dad lived in El Dorado my brother never has)

We finally arrive at the hotel…..now….before you start thinking about nice hotels w/ restaurants STOP. Because it was about 2 steps up from the kind of hotel that rents rooms by the hour. No restaurant but a Huttle House (like a Waffle House) across the street. But there was a pool thank you Lord. A nice pool. And they had Internet & set up a computer for the guests to use for free which was very kind of them.

Oh yea….I forgot to mention…..we could only get 3 rooms. Yep….you do the math.

The reason we went there is we have family in El Dorado. Now….we go to visit my grandma’s sister who is 80ish & has no central air. But she has tv. The other forms of entertainment in El Dorado is the Walmart & pizza hut type place. That is all.

So we came back home on Tuesday. Drove all day to get back. My dad had went back on Monday w/ the guys to check on our homes. All homes were standing but had a lot of trees down. I had no power & no generator so my sister & I stayed at my parents. Luckily they had a window unit in the master bedroom so we all slept in there. It was not a bad experience. My sister & I already knew how to cook some things on the propane burner so we cooked. We spent a lot of time outside playing cards or dice in the evenings. For lunch we had MREs. We’d go to the ballpark & get water & MREs from the National Guard. They were very nice men who we met. Always smiling with the kids & giving them candy.

When Walmart opened that was an experience. First waiting in line for an hour, only being let in 10 at a time for 20 min. (You really didn’t need long as there was hardly anything there) and having the National Guard standing there armed with machine guns. Waiting in your cars for an hour or longer to get gas. Oh boy….the things I never imagined I’d see.

How was your experience?

Coupon preview for 8/20/10

Click here for a preview of what inserts SHOULD be in the 8-29-10 edition of the Times Picayune. There should be 3 inserts, a RedPlum, a smartSource & a P&G so this week is a good week to buy extra papers to stckpile.

Happy couponing.

When to stock up

Thanks to The Krazy Coupon Lady for this comprehensive list of products. This is a great reference to use for when you want to know when to stock up or when something is going to go on sale. Now….some things vary by region. (Example we have Mardi Gras so there are usually sales that time for things like red beans, rice, zatarins mixes, etc) When these things are about to go on sale you MUST get your paper for your coupons. If its full of things your family uses regularly & you have room for it AND it won’t go bad consider buying multiple papers & stockpiling. I have room for a few things but not everything so I pick what I can store. I will not be one of these people whose house looks like Wal-mart threw up in their home. Hope this list helps.

January: Oatmeal, diet foods, Superbowl Sunday items (chips, drinks, snacks), oranges, pears, carrots, spinach, Christmas items, cold medicine & vitamins

February: National Canned food month, national hot breakfast month, valentines candy, Chinese new year, potatoes, carrots, spinach.

March: Frozen food month, lemons, limes

April: Easter items, ham, eggs, some baking supplies, chocolate, Earth day, organic foods, energy saver items, beets, cabbages, mushrooms. Stock up after Easter on clearance items.

May: Memorial Day, BBQ Items, paper products, insect repellent, sunscreen, Cinco De Mayo, salsa

June: National Dairy Month, (sometime a free milk catalina wyb 3 or 4 cereals), end of June is gearing up for 4th of July, blackberries

July- 4th of July items, national ice cream month, blueberries, 4th of July clearance items

Aug. Back to school items, school lunch items, office supplies, apples, plums

September: Back to School sales, Labor Day items, BBQ & summer clearance, diabetes awareness, oranges, grapes

October: Halloween candy, start of baking supplies, adopt a shelter dog month, dog food, Halloween clearance

November: Baking items, canned foods, pears, end of the month Thanksgiving decorations

December: holiday dinner food, baking supplies, canned food.

This is just a guide….not a complete list. Good luck.

Coupons

For some of my friends who are new to coupons I thought I would write a post of coupon terms so you can get familiar with them.

Learning coupon lingo
Sunday inserts (in my region) usually have 1 or more of the following
P&G-Procter & Gamble (usually once a month or less)
RP- RedPlum
SS- Smart Source

Terms
WYB-When You Buy
IPQ- Internet Printable Coupon
$1/1, $1/2- $1 off one item, $1 off 2 items
2/$1, 3/$2, etc. Two items for a dollar, 3 items for $2
BOGO: Buy One Get One
B2GO: Buy 2 Get one
Blinkies: In store coupon dispensers with blinking lights
Cat: Catalinas (they print out at the register w/ your receipts)
FAR: free After Rebate
MFR: Manufacturer
MIR: Mail in Rebate
OYNO: On Your Next Order
OOP: Out of Pocket
PSA: Prices starting At
UPC: Bar code
Tear pad: A pad of coupons that you tear off
Peelie: A coupon stuck on your product that you peel off

Now….some great places to get coupons are not only smartsource.com or redplum.com but the manufacturer’s website. So…..like a particular cereal…..check out the website. I know Bettycrocker.com has great coupons. Do you Twitter? Follow your favorite brands as they often tweet about upcoming deals & sales. Same goes for facebook.
Some great blogs are coupongeek.com, moneysavingmom.com, commonsensewithmoney.com. Google for more.

I hope this helps some of you new to couponing.