How different our lives are when we really know what is deeply important to us, and keeping that picture in mind, we manage ourselves each day to be and to do what really matters most.--Stephen Covey

Friday, February 25, 2011

Feel Good Friday

I haven't linked up with Erika in awhile to do a Feel Good Friday so I thought I would this week. Especially with all the challenges I am having this week (mostly with my job), I thought it would be nice to end the week on a more positive note. Challenging days always bring me down and I am trying very hard to stay positive.

So, here goes. Here are the things that made me feel good this week:

Wedding plans falling into place and coming together. It's insane on how fast it is creeping up on us. And we thought we had 20-months to plan. Where did those months go!?

Planning a trip to Chicago -- I am as excited about this trip as I am the wedding. I get to catch up with my college girlfriends (whom I miss every day) and get to go to a wedding.

Taking a spin class at the gym.
It was hard work, but I actually enjoyed it and can't wait to do it again. Seriously. I think I have a new love.

Receiving the gift that I plan on giving Jake for his groom's gift.
It's basically homemade and heartfelt and I can't wait to put it together for him.
Sorry I can't give out more details than that right now...

Seriously. If you don't subscribe to Groupon or know what it is, look into it. In the past 2-weeks I have purchased 4 Groupons--and they have already saved us money in printing our invitations :)

Ahhhh. I am already feeling my spirits being lifted and the bad feelings being released from my body. Amazing how that works. You should try it!!

Now, you go link up with Erika and let the world know what made you feel good this week!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

10 Things I am Thankful For

Since I am frustrated this afternoon, I think a good way to get out of that mind frame is to think about some things that you are thankful for. Hopefully after this blog I will feel more calm and positive about how the rest of my day is going to go.

A job. Even though it challenges me almost daily... 

Being able to afford to get our wedding invitations professionally printed instead of DIY at home. I know they are going to turn out 100 times better than if we were to do them at home.

My gym membership -- I love the way working out makes me feel. Even if I'm not losing weight like I should bewant to.

A fiancé that loves me unconditionally. Even when I'm tired and cranky. Which has been a lot lately :-/

Being organized -- it makes life so much easier.

My wedding dress. It's perfect and exactly what I was looking for when I started looking. It makes me feel amazing and beautiful.

Wedding plans coming together.

Planning a trip to Chicago this year <3 I get to visit my favorite place in the world.

DVR. Seriously, with my job, I wouldn't be able to watch all my shows during the week if it weren't for it.

God being present in my life and trust in Him to show me the way.

Now you do it. Tell me what you are thankful for.
I got this from Curious Georgi -- each week she invites her friends to write what they are thankful for and link up with her. You can do so on her blog too!

1. Make a list of 10 things your thankful for

2. Mention this blog post (hyperlink my post)

3. Ask others to join us

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

UPDATE: Wedding Planning

It never fails to amaze me how close the wedding is getting. And it's weekends where we get a lot of things done related to the wedding that I start freaking out about how close it actually is and how much we still have to do. The to-do list is dwindling down and things are coming together nicely. I can't wait to share all the details with all of you on the big day--and for those of you that are my cyber-friends, after the big day. I am excited to see how all my DIY things will come together in the end :)

This weekend we dropped off our invitations to be printed. Originally we were going to do them ourselves at home but our printer is a bit dodgy (we have the worst luck with printers) and we wanted them to look perfect. We are very excited with our decision and we also saved $40 with a Groupon at Paper Affair. We spent as much as we would have printing them at home and they will turn out about 100 times better. Especially since we went with the thermography printing! For the past two days I've been going back and forth with Paper Affair with proofs for the invitation so it's exactly how we want it... it's getting there!!

Also, my wedding dress came in!! I mean, I tried on my dress at the bridal dress boutique and love it, but this is my dress. The one that I ordered. omg. Totally in love with it!! It's perfect and I am 110% that Jake is going to love it. I am excited for the big day so that I can wear it <3

Other than that, not a whole lot is new in the life of Liz and Jake. Just counting down the days until the day we become Mr. & Mrs. finally!! We are getting there.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Saving Money by using Groupon

Yesterday I stated that I am no longer a Groupon virgin. In a matter of 3-days, I have purchased 3 deals from Groupon--yea, it's that awesome. Basically, for those of you that don't subscribe to Groupon (or have an app on your phone for it), you need to. It's really that simple. Let me give you the low-down:

First, you get information about a Groupon in your area--basically, it's a deal in your city or nearby city for a local place of business. You can get information on if Groupon is available in your area via the Groupon website--there is also a Facebook page, Android and iPhone app, Twitter, and email alerts. After the deal is announced, you decide whether or not it is something that you are interested in purchasing. Most of the deals are not "active" until a certain number of people purchase them, hence being called a Groupon :P Before you buy the deal, it tells you the value, the percentage saved and the amount of money you ultimately saved to help you see if it is worth your hard earned green paper.

Let me tell you about the awesome Groupons that Jake and I have purchased in the last 3 days (yea, we are addicted!):

The first one: 
The gym that I belong to offered a deal through Groupon for either a 50-minute massage or a body glow spa treatment. I purchased the deal for $35 which is actually valued for $75. I got a 53% discount on either spa treatment and ultimately will save $40. Which spa treatment will I pick? Well, naturally since I am getting married in less than 3-months, I'm getting the body glow treatment.

The day after I bought the spa treatment Groupon, the deal of the day was for Aurora Cineplex in Roswell, GA. The deal was $22 for a movie, mini golf, 2 medium popcorns and drinks for two. Valued for $50, which means we got a 56% discount and will ultimately save $28. Jake and I decided to purchase this deal because it'll make an awesome date night. And, it's someplace that we haven't been yet in the ATL so it's perfect :) We're always up for an adventure.

Tonight, I bought Jake a dental treatment to get his teeth whitened before the wedding. We paid $99, the deal is valued for $675 which means that we got a 85% discount and save $576!!!! Wholey moley, right!? I should get me one too!!

Seriously, you can't go wrong when you are saving money, right?? Especially when you are saving 50% on most of the deals that you purchase. I seriously suggest checking it out for your area... you will be amazed like we are :) I am still blown away by the dental treatment deal.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Homemade with Love

If you know me personally, you know that I enjoy cooking. I used to enjoy baking more than actual food cooking, but lately I've totally switched my mindset. I think it has a lot to do with E-Mealz and the fact that we are making yummy food instead of eating the same things all the time. Anyway, last year for Valentine's Day, Jake and I ordered a heart shaped pizza. It was good, but anything homemade is so much better. Especially pizza. So this year I set out to make my own heart shaped pizza :)

Last year's heart shaped pizza -- compliments to Papa John's.

This year's heart shaped pizza -- compliments to ME :)

Needless-to-say, the pizza was yummy. And maybe it's because the main ingredient is love. Okay, so that was corny, but it's true. I used premade pizza crust and cut up my own onions, tomatoes and green peppers, added some mini turkey pepperoni and put it in the oven for 15 or so minutes.

Jake also got me some Sweettarts and some baby roses (which I like more than regular roses) and we watched last week's Valentine's Day episode of Glee. It was a good night... this weekend we will find a Greek restaurant somewhere here in the ATL (anyone got suggestions??) to grab an official V-day dinner.

BTW, I am totally in love with my iPhone and the ability to get Groupon and Livingsocial updates via apps. I will write more about that tomorrow :) Let's just say that I am no longer a Groupon virgin :P

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

I know that in the last week or so I haven't been updating... If you can remember, I spilled water all over my laptop (well, actually my water bottle did so in my bag--my bad for carrying the two items together in one bag...) and just haven't had my laptop to update. We have a desktop as well, but it doesn't have all my stuff on it. All our pictures are on my laptop (and on my external harddrive!) and everything is signed in on my laptop. Anyway, as I was sitting down to update my dear 'ole blog here, our doorbell went *ding ding* and lo and behold my laptop arrived. I haven't opened it yet to see if they had to reformat it or anything, but they did have to replace my keyboard--which is weird since the water damage was on my screen. Whatever, they are the "experts". 

Not a whole lot has been going on. Jake has his "preview" yesterday at Savvi Formalwear for his suit. Everything is going to come together soooooo nicely!! And, just so you all know, my fiance is going to be super sexy on our wedding day :) To all our groomsmen: Please get fitted and send in your measurements as soon as you can!!

Did you hear about the iPhone coming to Verizon finally!? 

I thought the day would never come but I am super excited. I loved my Droid X and loved the Android operating system, but I was very bummed about the amount of apps that my iPod Touch had compared to my Droid phone. I was also super excited about having the PageOnce Pro app downloaded when they had a free offer during the beginning of the year -- it organizes all our bills and bank accounts and has push notifications when things are due, when our bank account has deposits and also when it's reaching a low balance. It's awesome!! But, I would have had to pay for it on my Droid -- and it's regularly a $12.99 app!! Anyway, long story short, Jake was due for an upgrade and he graciously let me update to the iPhone and he took my Droid X. Don't I have the best fiance ever!? Now I have Weight Watchers, all my playlists and PageOnce at my fingertips at all times!! 

Yea, I'm spoiled :P

Anyway, Happy Valentine's Day all my dear followers, friends and family. Jake and I don't have anything planned -- we like to not deal with the crowds so next weekend we will go and get some yummy Greek food but Jake gave me my V-day gift early (on Friday!) because he couldn't wait. 

How awesome is this bracelet:

Does Jake not know me?? Now I have Chicago close by at all times!! He's so sweet!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Thank Goodness It's Friday

This week seemed to have dragged on forever. On Wednesday it felt like it was Thursday and yesterday just felt like a filler day of the week. I'm hoping that it won't be a late night at work. I'm ready to go home on this particularly yucky, rainy, cold day and curl up on the couch with Jake and watch movies. He's already at home, enjoying his Friday. Since Jake's work started the new schedule he worked a 6-day work week and then a 4-day work week. Needless-to-say, it's his 4-day work week :)

Do you remember this??
So on Wednesday night, I totally messed up my laptop. :-/ Well, it's not totally messed up and I'm on it right now but I did have a nice little oops that has taught me a lesson. Let me tell you that my laptop is almost a year old, but this is the second one that I've owned in the last 3-years because my first one got replaced (the motherboard kept going bad). So, technically, I've had a laptop in my hands for 3-years. That's 2 years of grad school and being carried around to school, Panera Bread, babysitting jobs, Chick Fil-A, etc. and not having anything happen to it that was major. It's been in various bags with water, soda, food, heavy books, ... you name it, it's probably been in the bag with my laptop.

All I have to say is, thank God I got the accidental care on my computer!! It covers oops such as mine--an opened water bottle in my bag. OOPS! Here is the proof that I am an idiot (and I have learned my lesson!!):

The water damage is drying out because the water mark is much smaller 2-days later. And luckily it didn't get on my motherboard and fry it because then I wouldn't have been able to backup everything on my computer before I sent it in to be repaired/replaced. Dell is fabulous and sent me an empty box to ship it to the repair center and I am sort of freaking out about not having my laptop for 10-13 days, but I'll get over that. Time to back it up and ship it off!

The irony of the story is: my accidental care and warranty is up in May. Thank goodness this happened now!!

Oh. And I'm on a soft food diet until my mouth heals. Seriously, I can't eat anything :( The food tasting at our venue is going to suck tomorrow because everything I eat really hurts the roof of my mouth... The good news is though, we're deciding on our menu for the wedding tomorrow!! yay!!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Couponing Journey: An Update

The couponing journey continues on...

On Sunday Jake and I went to Publix to get their special double newspaper deal (and lunch!) so that I could get double the coupons. Let me tell you how tedious it is to cut out coupons... I didn't do it on Sunday because we were busy but I did it on Monday or Tuesday in between my tasks at work. I'm not sure I am digging buying 2 newspapers to cut coupons out of... A friend suggested that I date the coupon booklet and put it in an accordion folder and then clip the coupons that I need for grocery shopping. I'm at a loss of what would be easiest for me. Perhaps I should try it both ways? I mean, I like having the coupons already cut out for me when I make up my grocery list...

Anyway, so as I mentioned in my previous post about shopping at a SuperTarget to save money (I get 5% off my total purchase if I use my Target check card). Well, I finally got the chance to go grocery shopping this week and took the nice little drive to the closest SuperTarget to me.

Before I share my results, I'd like to preface my grocery total with the fact that there are 3-grown adults living in the house and I haven't been grocery shopping in 2-weeks which means that we were bare on just about everything. And, I have this awful sore on the roof of my mouth (it's like a blister--I got it from eating dry cereal ::rolls eyes::) so I had to get some Peroxyl, which was $10 alone (yuck!!). I also needed other household things (laundry softner, toothpaste, etc.) which makes a difference when I usually only buy groceries when grocery shopping. I refuse to buy anything other than groceries at the grocery store as everything is overpriced at the grocery store--the exception is Target :)

So, here is my savings:

Pretty impressive, huh? I realize that this is partially coupons, my 5% off, and in-store sales, but I was pretty excited about this!! I wish that I could have just done a regular shopping trip for our first trip (we would have probably spent only $100 for the week) and seen savings like that!! I'm trying to get it to be like that. I have this goal this year to learn how to coupon. Any advice or suggestions that you may have, I'm willing to listenread.
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