Category Archives: Frugal Fridays

Frugal Fridays: Goodwill…a Bargain Place for Book Lovers

Frugal FridaysHi guys and Happy Friday to everyone!  Of course, it’s a Frugal Friday here on MTOM and today I can’t wait to tell you about the terrific time I had yesterday shopping at Goodwill.  Have I ever mentioned how much I love shopping at thriftstore, consignment shops and yard/garage sales?  I am definitely a bargain hunter and it just thrills me to find a good deal on something…it get’s my adrenaline going…it’s like I experience a frugal high.

Yesterday after work, I decided to stop by Goodwill to just browse around and see what great deals I could find.  I wasn’t really looking for anything in particular.  I love books and dishes so that’s really the only section I head straight for when I enter the store.  I do have an ipad with several e-books but there is just something about the smell and feel of a book that still excites me, so every chance I get, I’m always out to find a great book at the thriftstore, librabry or on paperbackswap (online free book trading website).  Well of course, they had hundreds of books and I could have bought 50 of them, but I try to stick to a budget…even when I’m in a second-hand store because it can get out of hand…at least that’s the case for me. 

I purchased 9 books.  The prices weren’t bad at all….$1.91 (paperback) and about $2.91 (hardback).  That’s almost 90% off the retail price and if you are an avid book reader like me, then that’s an excellent deal and I wouldn’t have it any other way.  Don’t get me wrong, I love going to Barnes and Noble or other highend book retailers but I mainly go just to browse the new or latest books out and/or to get a cup of coffee from the cafe or to hang out with friends….it’s a great atmosphere for meeting friends or playing chess, which I’ve seen several people do when I’m there.  By the way did you know that a lot of the used books that you purchase off of Amazon or similar websites come from places like Goodwill or second-hand/used bookstores?  Yep, they sale a lot of their books online and the prices are pretty good, but the downside is you have to pay for shipping so the discount isn’t as good as purchasing it straight from the thriftstore….but I still do sometime use Amazon if I’m looking for a certain book in particular….I bite the bullet on the shipping…yuck.

Below is a list of books I purchased from Goodwill:

books

1) Webster’s German/English – English/German dictionary – I’m trying to brush up on my German and this little pocket dictionary will come in very handy.  It was a paperback which meant it cost me less than $2 bucks and it was in excellent condition.

2) How to Clean Practically Anything (Consumer Reports Books) – I’m always making a mess or dropping something on my clothes or spilling something on the floor…lol.  So I thought this book would be a great addition to my library.  It has a stain removal chart to help you remove ink, mud, ketchup, newsprint and many other stains….I’m loving that.

3) Fat Burning Foods and other weight-loss secrets (Judy Jameson) – Okay I’m forvever on a diet and trying to find ways to lose weight.  It’s a never ending mantra for us females…plus there might be a secret in the book that will finally help me to reach  my ultimate weight loss goal.  I’ll keep you abreast.

4) The Heart of a Leader (Ken Blanchard) – I’m an avid reader of self-help books and this will be a great addition to my library.

5) The Number – A Completely Different Way to Think About the Rest of Your Life (Lee Eisenberg) – This book is about finding that perfect number for retirement.  Lee Eisenberg has somehow found that sweet spot when it comes to financial planning and how much is enough to retire blissfully.  You know I’m an aspiring financial planner so this will be a good book to add to my repotoire…I’ll probably be doing a future post on this so stay tuned.

6) How to Think Like a CEO – The 22 Vital Traits You Need to Be The Person at the Top (D.A. Benton) – Another self-help book…I oneday hope to be the CEO of my own company so this will no doubt come in handy for me.

7) The Real Life Investing Guide (Kenan Pollack/Eric Heighberger) – Another good “know-how” book on personal finance and investing.  It’s a little outdated but I’m sure the techniques are still good, so I’ll review and see if there’s anything in there that will help you and me!!!! 

8) The Best Hymns Ever (Hal-Leonard) – This will be a great book for me to use at church.  I’m baptist and we still sing a lot of hymns.

9) Betty Crocker’s Best Christmas Cookbook – Christmas is fastly approaching and I’ll be getting into the baking mood so this book will definitely come in handy for me.  Maybe I’ll share some of the recipes I find, once I test them…I mean eat them….lol!!!

So all in all, my trip to Goodwill was successful.  I found some great books and it all came to around $22 bucks…that’s the retail price of just one of these books!  Bottomline, I got a great deal.  What do you think?   Tell me about some of your fabulous bargain finds.

How to have a Free Home Phone

Frugal FridaysWelcome to the Frugal Friday edition of MTOM.  As you all know, I’ve made saving money, one of my life-long goals…it’s an addictive hobby to say the least.  Today I’ll show you how you can have a free home phone.  Yes I did say “free”….after you’ve followed my explicit directions below, you won’t have to pay a dime to have a free home phone.

I know what some of you are saying…”Having a home phone is so antiquated” or “everyone uses their cell phone instead of a home phone these days”.   I agree for the most part with this line of thought, however, there are still plenty of people who insist on having a home phone or would get a home phone if they knew they could have it for free.  My parents, for example, have always insisted on having a home phone…they’ve had the same phone number for almost 20 years and they are still paying AT&T (complete choice package) to have it.  They are one in a countless pool of baby boomers who still insist on having a home phone. 

The reason that I have this free home phone is that I’m thinking about going down to a $10/mo. cell phone plan through Airvoice Wireless, which I’ll explain in a future post.

So basically, to get this free home phone, you must have high speed internet (wireless) through your phone or cable company because your free home phone will be through the internet (VOIP). 

The instructions below are simple and easy:

1) Sign-up for Highspeed DSL/Broadband through your local phone company like ATT or through your cable company (use must have a router for wireless service)

2) Get your free home phone number through Google Voice.  You will have to have a gmail account. There are other VOIP services that you can sign up for such as Call Centric, but I’m not sure if the service is free.  I used Google Voice.

3) You will need to purchase a telephone VOIP adapter.  I used OBIHAI (OBI100).  It wasn’t expensive….about $35 if purchased through Walmart.com.   You can plug any type of phone into this adapter.  I purchased a VTECH wireless cordless phone system through Wal-mart as well.  One quick note worth mentioning.  Google Voice does not allow you to make 911 calls, however, you can pay $12/yr. through Anveo, who has partnered up with OBI.Click on this link to find out more.  Or you could just use your cell phone to make emergency calls. 

You So there you have it.  If you follow the simple instructions from above, you’ll be talking on your free home phone in no time.

How to see your favorite movies for Less

cooltext676200706-scaleIf you love going to the movies but don’t like paying the steep movie price, then this post is for you.  It seems as though the price of going to the movie theater, these days, has gone up right alongside the price of gas and if you’re on a budget or have a large family…that with refreshments could put a nice size dent in your wallet.   

But don’t fret; here are some great ways to see your favorite movies, in the theater, for less:

Take advantage of theater loyalty programs

For a small upfront fee, most national theater chains offer loyalty cards to its customers and that can mean discounted movie tickets and free refreshments for you after you’ve met the criteria.  So if you love going to the movie theater on a regular basis then taking advantage of the theater loyalty program would be most suitable for you. 

Go at a less popular time

No one wants to get up early on the weekends but it you’re smart, going to the movie before noon can be a great way to see your movie for less.  As a matter of fact, most of the movies are discounted as much as 40% off the regular price of $10-12.50.  If the movie is in 3D then the discount can be even steeper.  Not only will you enjoy paying less than most other movie goers but you’ll also enjoy peace and quiet as well as the advantage of choice/premium seating when going at a less popular time….that’s priceless. 

 Wait for it to go to the dollar theater

Prior to coming out on DVD, most popular movies will make a pit stop at the dollar theater for a couple of weeks.  This is a great way for you to see the movie at 75-90% off but the one caveat is that you’ll have to wait about 8-10 weeks to see it but if paying less is the object then holding out to see your favorite movie at the dollar theater is worth every penny.  This is an ideal way for large families, with kids, to see movies at the theater without paying an arm and a leg.