My savings goal for the end of the year.

I'm currently sitting at $4,468.65.

Just a few hundred bucks away from saving over $5,000.00 this year just by using coupons. Amazing huh? Who knew that those tiny slips of paper in the Sunday news could make such a huge impact.

Stackin' Paper,

P. Manolos

I'm all Backed Up


Get your mind out of the gutter and pass the peanut butter... and if you're out of peanut butter,  I've got about 12 bottles in the cabinet you can borrow.  All of my cabinets in the kitchen are filled to the brim with canned goods, pasta, cereal and even a random box of gum (gum is always free with a coupon). I can't begin to describe to you how badly I need to buy can organizers! Not to mention a chest freezer (BTW- I saw one on sale for Black Friday, but I wasn't about to fight the crowds to grab a freezer... not to mention the shipping cost).  I'm still debating on whether it's time for me to move down to the basement or encroach on my beautiful cleaning supply closet with canned goods. I'm picky about where everything is stored.

Here's a photo of my pantry closet:

Yup. That's at least 20 boxes of cereal, 4 bottles of syrup, and 20 cans of Campbell's soup among other various items. Staying organized is crucial in the coupon game. You need to be able to know exactly when everything will expire and how much of any one given item you'll use in a week/month/year. For example, 20 boxes of cereal sounds excessive, but I usually get through 1.5 boxes a week. Most cereal has an expiration date of at least 8 months to one year after you purchase it.  At a rate of 1.5/week I'll finish off all of my cereal well before it expires.

Chex mix anyone?
I love grocery shopping for my parents too. I bought 11 boxes of Chex Mix last week for my Mom. She's pretty limited on the type of cereal she can eat due to her gluten allergy. So when I saw that Chex Mix was on sale for 3/$5.00 at GE, I knew I had to stock up. I had coupons of various values, $1.10/2, $1.00/2, and my favorite $1.00/1.  Pretty tough to beat that price. Did I mention I also get fuel points for all of my purchases?  Gravy train just keeps on coming.

P. Manolos

Mayhem, Chaos, and Coupon Porn: Vol I

****Warning:  The following photo may cause you to either pass out, tremble with excitement, or seethe in envy***

I'm hoping for feeling #3.

Nothing is more reflective of how I've been feeling lately than my stockpile. Complete and utter chaos. Some of the sections of my at-home grocery store look great. Let's start with my cleaning supply closet.

Yup. that's just 3/4ths of what I have stored in there shown in the picture. I can't tell you how excited I was to get the top shelves filled up. Now what to do with some of the extra space on the third shelf? I've got enough laundry detergent to last for at least 2 years (and that's if I don't give away bottles to friends an family like I usually do) and I'm pretty good on dish detergent. I love this room. Neat rows filled with cleaning supplies that I'll probably never have time to use.

You'll just have to check in this week to see the rest of my stockpile ;-)

P. Manolos

Today's Obsession

Why the hell has my MAC decided to die on me?

I guess now is better than a year ago when I was studying for 3L exams at this time.

Life is crazy right now. I spend my days at work and my evenings studying for the bar exam or hunting down food for the winter... like a bear... Just like a bear. Except I store food in cupboards instead of pockets of fat located all over my body.

Ugh, come to think of it... maybe I'm just like a bear right now?

Do the Right thing, All the time, Everytime

I heard this cheesy line somewhere... I want to say I heard it at work in regards to safety or some sort of ethics issue.

Got to love HR propaganda.

Our first lesson in law school was to realize that the day we signed the paperwork to enroll in our classes, we also signed up to become a different breed of human being. All we do is think about risk and how to avoid it. If we can't avoid it, then we figure out who the hell should pay for it when the proverbial "sheet" hits the fan. Everything in life has a certain amount of risk to it, we just need to figure out whether the costs are worth more than the pay off.

So imagine my chagrin today when I went to go get a fritter from the work coffee shop and I find in the corner of the elevator three very crisp $20.00 bills.

Oh sigh. A test.

A much younger, non-law school version of me would have taken the money and run. You've seen the miracles I can pull of with just a few bucks, getting $60.00 is like winning the lottery.

My older, wiser, and responsible self took over today and I promptly took the $60.00 to the security desk for the reckless money trasher to pick up if they even realize they're missing $60.00 in the first place.

Le sigh.

When you sign up to become a lawyer, your obligation to the code of ethics is 24/7 worldwide. Doesn't matter if you're sleeping, in Dubai, or drunk in a gutter somewhere. You've got to be honest or you're taking the risk of losing your license.  Would I have lost the ability to take the bar exam by pocketing a few bucks? Maybe, maybe not. But I wasn't about to take that risk.

It's a risk that's way too pricey to take.

P. Manolos

Today's Obsession

Ooooohhhhh, ahhhhh!!! Notice the freshly done french manicure! I'm definitely channeling my favorite coupon blogger, the Coupon Goddess in this pic.  I always envy how gorgeous her nails look each time she takes a pic of her hands.

Admiration aside, I'm completely obsessed with this tea. Why, you ask? Well for one, a few weeks ago Target had an awesome deal where:

1. Target released a $1.00/1 Tazo tea coupon on their website
2. They also price cut the tea to $2.79 box
3. AND there was also a $1.50/1 Tazo manufacturer coupon in circulation.

Sorry guys, this is a dead deal. Yes, I'm a tease. But I'm worth it :)!

In other words my friends, the perfect storm and the chance for me to get a fantastic box of tea for mere pennies. Tazo Rest Herbal Infusion tea appealed to me mainly because it was made with rose hips. I really didn't think the tea could actually help me get any more rest than I'm used to these days....

I was wrong. DEAD wrong. After a night of sleeping like an absolute log (even in spite of the min-pin shaking his collar in my face every 2 hrs), I began to wonder whether or not Tazo decided to slip some Ambien in the tea or if they came up with a new wonder drug.

The only unfortunate thing for me is that I only grabbed one box... Sigh, here's to hoping we'll get more coupons soon.


P. Manolos


If a title for a blogpost doesn't come to me in .5 seconds, I feel like a failure. So imagine how I felt when I sat here tonight for a full five minutes without any clue on what to say.

Lots of ups and downs in my life lately.  More downs than ups really.

Remember when we were kids and we got sooo freakin' jealous when the other kids got a new toy or were able to cross the street before we were even allowed to take the training wheels off our bikes? Or maybe flash forward to being in junior high and all the other girls had boobs and you were just two cotton balls in a jumper.. Well, I didn't have that problem, but I can imagine how much that sucked for you.

Ha. Ha. Setting humor aside, let's move forward to the present. 2011. If you were to ask me 10 years ago where I would be right now, I would tell you I would be an attorney at a law firm somewhere starting a prestigious career. I'd also tell you that I have a wonderful family with a bunch of nappy headed chocolate babies and a home on the nice side of town.

I wish I could have slapped the 16 year old me just about now.

When we were kids, our parents told us that we would have to "wait" for everything. Wait for the cookies to get out of the oven, wait for our new toy, wait for a car, etc. etc. etc. Now that I'm a grown woman, I can't help but ask.... when's the wait over?

I can't help but feel like I'm still waiting. Trains, cars, bikes, and hell even that guy in the wheelchair screeches past as I sit on a dusty bench wondering when my stop would be next.  My feelings tend to stay in constant flux between anger, sadness, bitterness. We've all seen the kid on the playground with a stiff upper lipping yelling, "When's my turn?!?!" It's not attractive for a pint sized adult and its especially unbecoming of a 26 year old kid.

Waiter. Waiting. Weight. Wait. Heavy words. All indicate carrying some kind of load. Just "wait and see". "Oh you just wait until I get my hands on you." Or "I just can't wait." Who the hell decided it would be a good idea to call a reception space a "waiting area." Wouldn't it be more attractive to call it something else... anything else?

When's the wait over?

P. Manolos

Today's Obsession

I dare you to try to resist this little guy. He's curled up next to me on the couch. Love of my life, my furry little child. I swear, I would nurse him if I could... ok maybe I've gone a little too far on that one.

P. Manolos

It's not the dog in the fight....

It's the fight in the dog.

Been busy. Fighting off sales like mad.

My mom has been staying with me for a few days. I can't say there hasn't been any friction, after all, I've been living by myself for almost 10 years. Technically 8, but close enough. 

My shoes were on fire at CVS this week. The giftcard deal was way too good to pass up. $30.00 spent on select items = $10.00 gift card back. Even without coupons, this can be a great deal. Add an $8.00/2 Covergirl coupon AND a B1G1 50% off sale on Covergirl. Magic. I ended up paying $0 OOP and receiving a $10.00 gift card each time. Rinse and repeat about 3x to make the easiest $30.00 I've ever made in my entire life.

My Mom asked me, Why do you go shopping so much? 

Well.... if someone said "Come to my store, and I'll pay you $30.00 to buy what you need,"  how could you say "No.. I'd rather not."


Well, I'm off to work. One of the benefits of getting up at 5AM is that my work day is over at 3:30PM. Just in time for a good deal.

P. Manolos

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