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Monthly Archives: April 2012

New Job Anxiety


Today I start a new job at a local Hospital and I am extremely nervous.  What is it about new jobs or other situations that cause such anxiety? I am a friendly person who can talk to anyone, I am good at what I do and usually fit in just about everywhere, so why the apprehension?

Do you all feel this way when you start new jobs?  Is it just fear of the unknown or what?  What are your thoughts?

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Posted by on April 30, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Leading Lady Bra Review & Giveaway


My experience with bras started very early.  At 12 years old I was in the sixth grade and already wearing a 34 C.  I was the only girl in my class that had “blossomed” over the summer vacation and I definitely was not ready for all the attention it brought.  So at 41, to say I have been on a lifelong search for bras that not only fit but also were pretty or feminine, is not an exaggeration. 

I am someone who just cannot wear under wire bras.  They never fit me correctly and always cause pain under my arms and around my chest.  Finding a bra with great support that doesn’t have an under wire is like trying to find the proverbial needle in the haystack.  

Then I find Leading Lady!  I received on of their  molded padded seamless wirefree full figured bras .  This is what I have been searching my whole life for.  A beautiful, wire free bra that FITS and feels great.  From the moment I tried it on I was astounded by it’s comfort.  I have to be honest, I slept in it the first night and it was amazing! No digging into my skin, no riding up or straps all over the place.  I have found my bras for life.

 

Leading Lady is a premiere, intimate apparel company dedicated to creating comfortably functional, remarkably affordable, stylish and easy-to-wear bras, camis and sleepwear. A family owned and operated business, Leading Lady has been expertly tailoring nursing and full figure bras for top brands and retailers across North America for more than 70 years. For the first time, Leading Lady’s extensive line of nursing and full figure intimates – including sexy stretch lace wire-free and under wire bras, supportive and seamless sport and yoga bras, and cozy sleep and leisure bras – can be purchased directly on LeadingLady.com.

Leading Lady is proud to celebrate “Leading Ladies” everywhere through its products, programs and philanthropic activities. Leading Lady is dedicated to arming new moms with the support – physically, intellectually and emotionally – they need to nurture their babies through breastfeeding and is committed to supporting a variety of organizations and issues that are relevant to women across the country. You can follow Leading Lady on Facebook, Twitter and  Google+.

 No matter what you are looking for, Nursing bras or full figured: Nursing gowns and more, you will find everything you need at Leading Lady .
I am so excited to have found this company and their wonderful products! I now do not have to spend endless hours going store to store searching for a bra that I never seem to find.  I even was able to check my size using their fit guide and realized I had been buying the wrong size. 

 Leading Lady is generously offering one of their amazing products as a giveaway for my readers.  One winner will receive an item of their choice.
Entry is easy, just follow the rafflecopter below. Giveaway is open to US residents over 18.  Entries will be verified.  Good Luck!






I received a free product for this review.  These opinions are my won and I only recommend products I would use myself or think would benefit my readers.  This giveaway is in no way affiliated with facebook, twitter or google and is solely my own.


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Posted by on April 29, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Walgreens match ups: week of 4/29


Mc= manufacturers coupon    RR=register rewards     SS=smart source   RP=red plum

Lean cuisine:  on sale 2/$5
buy 4
use 1.00/4 mc  4/29 SS
final price: 4/ 9.00

Starbucks refreshers 12oz:   on sale 1.49
use 1.50/1   4/29 inserts
final price: free

Skinny cow ice cream:  2/$7
use 1.50/2 mc   4/29 SS
final price : 2/5.50

Swiffer products:  on sale 20% off
use  2.00/1 swiffer duster  online coupon
final price will vary

Palmolive:   .94
use .25/1 mc  4/29 SS
final price: .69

Neosporin essentials 1 oz:  8.99 B1G1 50% off
use (2) 2.00/1  mc 3/18 SS
final price:   9.48/2    or 4.74 each

Edys 6 ct fruit barson sale 2/$7
use 1.00/2  mc   4/1 SS
final price:  2/6$

Colgate power max toothbrush :   6.99
get 3.00 RR
use 2.00/1 mc  4/29 SS
final price :  1.99

Colgate toothpaste optic white:  2/7.00
use (2) .50/1 mc 4/29 SS
get 3.00 RR
final price: 2/$3

Listerine cool mint:  3.99
use .50/1 mc  4/29 RP
final price: 3.49

Speedstick deodorant:  2/$4.00
use buy one womens get one mens free mc  from 4/29 SS
final price: 2 for $2

Miralax:   19.99
 get 3.00 RR
use 3.00 mc  4/29 SS
final price:  13.99

Aleve: 7.99
use 2.00/1 mc 4/29 RP
final price: 5.99

Bayer advanced:  8.99
get 1.00 RR
use 1.00 mc 4/29 RP
final price: 6.99

 

 
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Posted by on April 28, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

How to make your own soy candles


I have been making soy candles for over 10 years now.  I use to make them and take them to craft fairs and home parties but I have just became so busy that it isn’t feasible anymore.  I still make them but just when someone requests them now.  I make jar candles, votives, tea lights, pillars, floaters and car fresheners.  I have done centerpieces and gift baskets and even shower favors.  My favorite is making candles in baby food jars in the scent of baby powder and tying them up with pastel ribbons.  They go over huge at baby showers.  Wedding showers I have done wine and champagne glass favors in the wedding colors as well.  

I started making my own candles when I realized just how much I was spending on Yankee candles as I was addicted.  My husband bought me a Yankee candle for my birthday about 10 years ago.  It was one of the big ones with 3 layers of different apple scents.  This candle cost 30$!!  But I thought, Oh well, it’s Yankee.  I lit the candle as soon as I opened the gift and let it sit on my dining room table.  About 4 hours later I went by the candle it had gone out and the wick had melted down into the wax.
It was so buried, I could not retrieve it.  I took the candle to the Hallmark store where my hubby bought it and was quickly told, they do not refund or exchange candles for any reason.  So I had a candle that my husband spent 30$ on that I could not even light.   I went to Michael’s and bought some wicks and some glass jars.  I went home and chipped the wax out of the Yankee candle and remelted it in an old pot. ( would not recommend this again unless you are going to throw the pot out).

I hot glued the wicks into the jars and re poured the wax into them so I could at least enjoy what he paid for.  And my passion was born.  I had recently heard a lot of buzz about soy candles and started to investigate.  I quickly found some supply companies, spent a small fortune at first to get started and after trial and error and l a lot of sweat and tears, I had my recipe down pat!!

Now, unless you know you are going to make huge quantities of candles for yourself or gifts etc  or are going to sell them, I suggest starting out small.  It is definitely more cost effective to buy in bulk, but why waste money if you are not sure this is something you are going to keep up with.  I, myself, even though I don’t sell as much anymore, still keep a huge supply of everything on hand as it is cheaper to make my own  for my own home because we go through a lot of candles.  especially the Odor eliminator candles( which are my fave and have a cherry scent and even get rid of cigarette odor).  DID YOU KNOW SOY CANDLES ARE NON-CARCINOGENS!!  every other wax has cancer causing agents in them, the worst offender is GEL candles, I do not allow these in my home  ever!!  as the gel  burns and evaporates, it never quite loses its gel quality and adheres to the nasal membranes and lungs like a leach.  Soy candles burn cooler and even if you stick your finger into a pool of liquid wax as its burning, it will not burn you.  Soy wax can be cleaned out of carpet with hot water and soap.  Try that with paraffin wax.

Ok, here is what you will need to get started making your first few candles….
Remember I am starting you off small. Later in the post, I will tell you where to get your supplies.

Buy about 1 pound of soy wax flakes
1 or 2  one oz liquid colors ( I would start with 1-2 just to see)
1 bag of wicks ( now depending on the size candles you are going to make, will determine what wicks to buy.)  if you are going to make small glass ware candles  use CD 12 or CD 14
if you are making them the size of jelly jars, use CD14 or CD16   if you are using glassware that has more than a 3-4 in diameter across, use CD 22
Glue gun
Scent oil.  Now this gets tricky.  I would decide on 2 scents you like and buy the small 4 oz size bottles.
a melting pot ( again buy the small one until you are sure)
and old pan
a old metal spoon
and old glass or ceramic plate you will never use again except for candle making.
 food scale

First off…. ALWAYS MAKE SURE YOU HAVE WINDOWS CRACKED OR OPEN AND IF POSSIBLE A CEILING FAN ON.  VENTILATION IS IMPORTANT BECAUSE WHEN YOU HAVE THESE SCENTS BREWING IN THE KITCHEN IT’S REALLY EASY TO GET A HEADACHE .

Plug in glue gun
Fill your old pan about a 1/3 of the way up with water and put on medium heat to start boiling.
I suggest starting off with small glassware at first just til you get the feel for it because unfortunately most candle making is trial and error.
put about  2-3 oz of wax into the melting pot then put melting pot into water pan ( acts like a double boiler)
while the wax is melting,  use a dab of hot glue on the bottom of the wick then press into place centered in the glassware.  be careful, hot glue is just that, HOT!

Now candle making is not an exact science , I don’t care what anyone says, There are so many variations that you cannot even calculate them all.  altitude, gas or electric stoves  etc.

Most candle making books and websites will tell you that each wax has to be brought to a certain temp and use a thermometer blah blah blah.. In ten years, I have never used one and won’t start now.

when the wax is completely melted, take it off the heat.  it works best to sit the pot on a hot pad or trivet.  your ready to add your scent.  the general rule is to use 1 oz of scent for every 3oz of wax.  I use an old shot glass for this.  some scents are normally stronger than others like vanilla is a much lighter scent than say, apple, so you may have to use just a tad bit more of a lighter scent.  Be careful though until you have some experience under your belt.  the scent is an OIL. and if you use too much in a small candle especially, when you light the wick and the wax gets liquid , the excess oil can float on top and burn.  I always suggest for the first few candles you make, never leave them unattended, & do not place anywhere that something is above them such as a cabinet.

Don’t be freaked out if it does ignite ( even after 10 years, it has happened to me, especially when I let the hubby help out and he goes scent crazy)  simply  pour a glass of water over the candle. 
One thing to remember with soy candles, less is more!! Soy wax automatically holds and releases scent better than any other wax.  If you find that you have not scented your  candle enough, just add a little extra the next time.  Don’t expect perfect candles when you’re just starting, heck don’t expect perfect candles every time even when you have been doing it for ten years lol.

Now it is time to add color.  The liquid color is the easiest to work with.  you only have to add a drop at a time as it can become dark quickly.  if you are using a color such as red, add a drop , stir, and let a drop from the spoon dry on the ceramic plate and see what the color is.  if it is not what you are looking for then add another drop and so on.

When you have the scent and color where you want it, you are ready to pour.  if the wick is way too long in the glass, simply trim it with scissors but make sure you leave at least a half inch above the glass, as a beginner maybe leave an inch.  pour your wax slowly as the other hand holds the wick so that it won’t fall into the wax.  do not fill the glass all the way to the rim , leave a little breathing room.  Now you can buy wick holders on line or in stores but I always improvised at first.  I used a pen or pencil laying across the top of the glass to steady and center the wick.  make sure it is in a place on your counter where no one will bump it or try to move it.  If the wick dries crooked, it stays crooked.

Drying time varies with the size of the candle but if you are making a small one with 3 oz of wax, general rule is about 3 hours for complete setting. You do not want to move a candle until it is all the way dry.

As you get more adept at candle making, you can experiment.  I mix scents, layer candles etc.
If you are going to layer, make sure each layer is completely dry before adding the next.

I hope you have as much fun making candles as I do  and below is a list of retailers and websites to help you out!!  HAVE FUN!

 I use a lot of canning jars like jelly jars, Biglots has these but usually seasonal so check at local grocery and ACE hardware stores  I even get them at yard sales.

Michaels   I suggest the store as the website does not offer much.  Micheal’s is great for small glassware and usually has coupons in their ads.

Lone star candle supply    below I will post individual links for the different supplies


soy wax  this soy 135 is the best and easiest to work with


CD wicks  this is a sampler pack of different sizes.and they come with the wick pins attached


liquid dyes  start out with 1 oz bottle til you try them


fragrance oil  again start off with the 4oz bottles til you try them




Glassware, I suggest using old candle glass you may have around the house or getting some from yard sales or thrift stores while you are practicing.  cheap is always better to make mistakes with.






After you have gotten a little more practiced and decide you want to venture in to molds etc,  just drop me an email and I would be glad to help.  officegirl70@yahoo.com


Couponfreestuff( Krista Lafave)  is in no way liable for any mishaps that may occur from candle making.  You are starting a new craft at your own risk.  There are always dangers involved when using fire, hot wax etc. I suggest using the utmost care at all times and to remove any distractions while you are crafting.  Keep lit candles away from children, pets and anything flammable.  Do not leave burning candles unattended.  This post is for informational intent only.  I am in no way affiliated with Yankee and the opinions expressed in this post are based solely on my experience.  It is not meant to deter or deflect anything from yankee company.

 
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Posted by on April 28, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

In a Pikle Bag: Review and Giveaway


Let me start off by saying that you will rarely ever see me with out a colossal handbag at my side.  I love big handbags! The only problem I have is keeping them organized.  I could not tell you how many times someone has asked me for a nail file or a band aid and it takes twenty minutes to find if I find it at all.  Organization has never been my strong suit when it comes to my purses.  I usually just toss what I need in and hope for the best.

You will never know how relieved I was when I found the In a Pikle Bag . I love everything about this bag including the oh so appropriate name.  I kick myself as I think, “Why didn’t I think of this”.  I believe that this amazing product is a must have for every woman’s handbag, briefcase or backpack.  The name says it all.  In a pickle? Need an item quick?  Well you will never look far again with this in your bag!  Are you intrigued?

I received the Bread and Butter Pikle in Plum Gator and it comes in black too, with the complete starter pack.

Bread & Butter Pikle with Starter Pak Contains:

  • 1 exterior cover of your choice
  • 4 double sided clear bags
  • 1 hand sanitizer pen
  • 1 spot remover pen
  • 3 individually wrapped antibacterial wipes
  • 1 credit card size mirror and floss combo
  • 1 pair of tweezers
  • 1 pair of fingernail clippers
  • 2 emery boards
  • 1 travel size sewing kit
  • 1 retractable mini scissors
  • 1 24″ tailor tape
  • 3 hair bands
  • 5 rubber bands
  • 5 bobby pins
  • 5 safety pins
  • 5 paper clips
  • 1 phillips head mini screw driver
  • 1 straight head mini screw driver
  • 1 mini pen
  • 1 “In A Pikle” sticky notepad
  • 10 adhesive bandages
  • 1 package travel tissues
  • 1 pill box
How amazing is that! Getting all of these items and the bag!! In a Pikle is small enough to fit in your purse and organizes all of the essentials neatly for you and you won’t be rummaging through your purse anymore to find just what you need. Along with the bag and starter pack, you receive 4 double sided, clear plastic bags that have a zip closure, making all of your necessities easily accessible.  
The other styles available are Dill Pikle, Pepper Pikle and Sweet Pikle which are also available in different colors or patterns.  When you need essential refill packs, you have many to choose from to pack your Pikle…
  • Beauty Refill pack
  • Essentials Refill pack
  • Mcgyver Refill pack
  • Ala carte packs
  • Complete refill pack

It was so easy and fun putting my Pikle together.  Even the box is cute. 

  • Open up your Pikle bag
  • Unsnap interior straps
  • place the empty interior plastic bags with the holes lined up and then re snap the straps.
  • Begin placing the items in the bags ( comes with suggested directions)
  • Then roll your Pikle bag closed and snap!

Here is the finished product…..


Now that I have this little gem, I don’t know what I would do without it!! Everyone I need to buy gifts for is definitely getting In a Pikle bags. I just ordered one for my mom for Mother’s Day and can’t wait to see her face.  I even love their website and you can tell them your own in a Pikle moment 
join their mailing list or even host a Pikle party. In a Pikle is offering a special discount code for my readers.  Just use the code COUPONFREESTUFF at checkout for 10% off.
In a Pikle has generously offered one of their great bags as a giveaway for my readers.  One lucky winner will receive the Sweet Pikle in chocolate brown polka dots.
Entry is easy, Just follow the rafflecopter form below.  Open to US residents over 18 only please.  All entries will be verified.  Good Luck!

I received a product for this review. I only recommend products I would use myself or think would benefit my readers.


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Posted by on April 28, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Diamondozen Review and giveaway


I was recently introduced to a great site, Diamondozen 
which is made in New York City by an eighteen year old boy.  I am a lover of all things jewelry and all things unique and this site has both and more.  I received the skull and lock necklace and I love it.  My  jewelry box is an eclectic mix of fashion, costume and fine jewelry and I have no problem mixing and matching them up to create my own look.

Diamondozen also offers accessories such as bows and headbands and apparel. If you are looking for an item for yourself or a gift for any occasion, you are sure to find a fresh, funky gift idea here.

 I have a twenty three year old daughter who loves finding new items for her wardrobe as well and she absolutely flipped for these items.  I am so happy that hair bows have made a comeback and these bows are perfect for any outfit and any occasion.  Choose a bow, tee and jewelry item to put together a great new look.

Diamondozen has several tees to choose from and you can make a statement in any of them.
If you have teens or twenty somethings they are sure to love these items.  I wore my necklace several places now and have gotten several comments and compliments on it and isn’t that what we all want? Our jewelry and clothes to stand out and say something about us?

Diamondozen has generously offered a giveaway to my readers.  One lucky reader will win the Skull and lock necklace.  Giveaway is open to US residents over 18 only.  Entry is easy, just follow the rafflecopter form below.  Good luck

I received an item for review, however, I only recommend items I would use myself or think would benefit my readers.


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Posted by on April 28, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

UPrinting giveaway


It’s a Giveaway! Military Wives Saving, UPrinting, and [Couponfreestuff] have teamed up to bring you this very exciting giveaway! One lucky winner will receive a sweet 250-piece Die-Cut Business Card Set from UPrinting and a nice little $100 Amazon.com Gift Card!

You may be thinking, “But I don’t have a business!” That’s totally ok, you can still enter! You don’t have to create business cards! You can gift this prize to a friend, or create your own cards such as gift tags for Christmas presents, Mommy Cards, bookmarks, labels for your kids stuffs (use your laminate maker …) So many ways in which to utilize “business cards”! UPrinting has a nifty design tool built right into their site that you can use to upload your own images, too!

Winner will receive a $100 Amazon.com Gift Card and 250 Customizable Die-cut Business Cards:

  • 2×3.5″ Rounded Corners, 2×2″ Rounded Corners, 1.75×3.5″ Rounded Corners
  • 2×3.5″ Leaf, 2×3.5 Rounded one corner, 2×3.5″ Half Circle Side, 2×3.5″ Oval, 2.5″ Circle
  • 14pt Cardstock Gloss / Matte / High Gloss (UV), or 13pt Cardstock Uncoated
  • FREE U.S. Shipping ONLY

To enter, simply follow all of the Rafflecopter steps below. To ensure you have an optimum chance at winning, you should do the voluntary entries in addition to the mandatory ones! And be sure to check out the optional daily Tweet – you’ll get an additional 25 entries per day! WOW!


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Disclosure: Military Wives Saving was not compensated for this giveaway, however, was given 250 Die-Cut Business Cards. The $100 Amazon Gift Card is sponsored by Military Wives Saving. All opinions expressed in this post are solely the blog owners’. This giveaway is open to US residents only, 18 years old and above. No prize substitutions allowed. Winners are allowed to win once over a six-month period. Only email addresses used for the giveaway will be eligible to claim the prize. Giveaway ends 5/12/12 at 12:01 a.m. Winner will have 48 hours to reply to notification email or another winner will be chosen. Both gift cards will be emailed after winner responds.

 
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Posted by on April 27, 2012 in Uncategorized