Tag Archives: amazon.com

Lil Red’s Holiday Shopping Pro Tips

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Lil Red’s Holiday Shopping Pro Tips

Howdy! I have been asked a lot recently for advice on holiday shopping, since I finished my present purchasing way ahead of the game last week. I take holiday shopping and birthday present buying very seriously, because I love to spoil my family and friends. Of course, random prezzies throughout the year are nice, but it’s fun to go hard on the major gift giving occasions. Now, I’m going to walk you through a step by step guide on my holiday shopping process to help you finish your purchasing with December to spare:

Make a list: I know that I say this all of the time, but it’s true. Type or write out all of the people that you need to shop for and then start narrowing down the best gift for him or her. What are their hobbies? What is their favorite food or type of music? What is something that they would like to have but would never buy for themselves? These are all excellent places to start.

More on gift selecting: Still stuck? Let’s talk about some of my go to present selections:

  • Alcohol is always a good choice if you’re buying for one of your girlfriends or brothers. Who wouldn’t want a six pack of Christmas ale or a bottle of vino?
  • If you’re buying for a couple, how about treating them to a date night? Gift cards for restaurants and movie theaters are a great place to start.
  • Groupon vouchers can also be a nice surprise. I received two vouchers for a Paint Nite event at a bar one year and my guest and I had an absolute ball.
  • Lotions, candles, and other bath and body care treats are also a fool proof selection if you are buying for a sister, your mom, or a girlfriend. Customize a gift set for them filled with smell goods, fuzzy socks, and a sleeping mask for the ultimate pampering party.
  • Buying a subscription is another really good option. Popping for a few months of a Netflix, Hulu, Ipsy, or Birch Box subscription is the gift that keeps on giving and they are not overly expensive.

Purchasing time: After you’ve made your list and checked it twice, it is time to move on to the actual purchasing of the presents. I prefer to do every possible bit of my shopping online, and then buy the rest of my presents in store as needed. I am a faithful member of Amazon and a majority of my shopping was done on there this year. I then went to the shops on a week day afternoon to do the rest of my buying and eliminated all of my holiday purchasing in one huge swoop.

Online shopping tips: If, like me, you prefer to shop online, then there are some steps that you can take to ensure that you are always getting the best deal. Such as:

  1. Signing up for emails or rewards programs. Most websites will give you an extra incentive to sign up for their email updates, like ten percent off a purchase or free shipping. Every little bit helps!
  2. Using websites like Retail Me Not or Honey to find coupon codes for different websites. Note that some websites rarely have promotion codes like Amazon, TJMaxx, and Zara.
  3. Do your research. Read reviews of the products that you are going to buy and Google them, as well. You can’t physically touch and look at what you’re thinking of purchasing so this is the online equivalent.
  4. Check out multiple different websites to ensure that you are getting the best deal.

In store shopping tips: I avoid shopping in store during the holidays like the plague. However, it has to be done sometimes and this is how I avoid the hustle and bustle of hitting the shops:

  1. Go shopping during non peak traffic times. A week day afternoon is ideal, but if your schedule doesn’t allow for that, then try going late in the evening or early in the morning. The less people around while you’re shopping, the better.
  2. It’s also important to make a game plan while shopping in store. Know exactly who you’re shopping for and where each item that you need is located in the store. Wandering aimlessly can be stressful and ain’t nobody got time for that.
  3. Use coupons, in store sales, and apps. Plenty of stores now use apps and rewards programs to give their customers great deals. Find them, use them, and love them. Every little bit helps!

And finally, make sure that you double check all of your items that you purchased in store or online for any defects in the products. The sooner you find a problem and correct it, the less you have to stress about it – especially if you have to ship back the item and rebuy it.

So there you have it, Lil Red’s Holiday Shopping Pro Tips! Was this guide helpful to you? What are some of your tips to holiday shopping that I didn’t cover? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

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All Done Holiday Shopping!!

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All Done Holiday Shopping!!

HURRAY HURRAY! As of this week, I am officially all done holiday shopping and I seriously could not be happier. Being finished with gift buying less than halfway through November might seem obscenely early to some but, for me, it is just right. For as long as I can remember, I have never been one that enjoys last minute shopping or even going to the shops as Christmas draws closer. Don’t get me wrong, I love holiday set ups in stores and magnificent window displays just as much as the next person but, my god, the stress can be unbearable.

What if I can’t find just the right present in store? What if the gift arrives broken or the shipment gets delayed? What if the present is out of stock by the time I get to buying it? What if, what if, what if. AHHH! Just typing this out gives me anxiety!! I am far from the home stretch, just because Amazon packages still have to arrive, but the fact that I’m ninety-nine percent done makes me breathe easier.

Not only the aforementioned, but I’m happy to get one big bill out of the way now, rather than have it broken up into December when I’ll be trying to save moolah again. Hello, holiday cash! This is the earliest that I’ve ever completed my holiday shopping before, and I find myself wondering why I haven’t done it like this every year. The major stress of the season is gone and now I can sit back, relax, and sip my hot chocolate while the rest of my family and friends do the December Dash to get all of their shopping done in time! But that’s none of my business. 😉 😉 😉

Who else is all done holiday shopping? Who is a last minute gift buyer? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Monday Update: Early Holiday Shopping Edition

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Monday Update: Early Holiday Shopping Edition

Hi everyone and happy Monday! I hope that all of you had a fabulous weekend. One thing that Lil Red loves almost as much as shopping for herself, is shopping for other people. I live for birthdays, anniversaries, and Christmas so that I can spoil my friends and family rotten with well thought out presents. I revel in making my holiday shopping list, mulling over the hobbies and favorite things of my loved ones, and coming up with the perfect presents under the tree for each of them.

Even though it is a bit early to start holiday shopping, I am pretty happy to have knocked out a solid chunk of gift buying this month. It was admittedly hard to spend the extra dough, especially because of my New York trip, BUT I was going to be buying the presents anyways so I figured that I would start getting it over with now. And since my preferred method for present shopping is doing it online, the earlier the better, in case any of the gifts are broken, take long to ship, etc.

Amazon has always been a godsend when it comes to gift giving occasions for me. What I usually do is buy a majority of my presents from there and then go to the mall (Yikes!), TJMaxx, or Target for the rest of the random odds and ends. Quite a few of my purchases have already arrived to chez moi, and I have to say that Amazon has really stepped up their shipping game. All of my packages arrived in about three days and all of the contents seemed to be handled and packed really well. When I opened the boxes and saw a solid amount of packing foam, I was confident that all of the items were going to be in one piece and ready to be given as a gift. And they were.

I’ve only had a handful of bad experiences while shopping on Amazon in the years that I’ve been a customer of theirs. But the success of my recent early bout of holiday shopping has made me feel safe in my decision to leave a majority of my purchasing in Amazon’s hands, once again. I’m glad to have gotten a head start on my Christmas shopping and am looking forward to checking off the rest of my list in November!

So there you have it, this week’s Monday Update: Early Holiday Shopping Edition! Who is done with their Christmas shopping already? Who is a last minute gift buyer? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

5 Gadgets That Can Make Your Life Easier

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Hi everyone and happy weekend! This post is compliments of my friend, Amelia, from thetrustcompass. In a world full of gizmos and gadgets, this article is dedicated to helping you pick out the best new toys possible to make your day to day life a total breeze. Check out Amelia’s author bio and then read on for the latest in the technology that you need ASAP:

Hello, Amelia here from thetrustcompass.com! I am a technology expert and have experience writing for several websites. When it comes to anything technology related, Thetrustcompass is your one stop destination. It has useful posts on a wide range of topics and detailed reviews of products related to technology, outdoor games, and health to help buyers make informed choices and spend their money wisely.

5 Gadgets That Can Make Your Life Easier

Today, more than ever, we are highly dependent on tech gadgets to help us run our life, and luckily, more and more smart products are doing just that. They connect to our phone, so we can operate them remotely, which gives us more time to focus on chores that need winding, or grab a few more minutes of rest and recuperation.

But do all gadgets truly uncomplicate our lives? Yes, cutting-edge phones and 4K TVs are worth drooling over, but are very heavy on the wallet, too. A fitness tracker might help us live healthier, but being constantly nagged by a device isn’t very zen. A drone might aid in capturing some beautiful angles, but only if you’re adept at not crashing it. A smartphone might let you communicate with anyone in the world, but too much social media can be pervasive and pesky. State-of-the-art VR kits and the best 3D pens are taking innovation to a new level, but a good gadget should not only be solving the problem, but also making life easier.

The best tech devices are ones that make some part of our day easier, whether it’s getting ready for work, cooking a meal, sticking to our walks, or just catching the morning news. There are devices that make all of this possible with no more effort on our part than setting up an accompanying app. Below, we’ve rounded up a few gadgets that can add to our day, but don’t demand much in return and none of them will wind up being ‘another thing to worry about’.

1 – Amazon Echo Dot

The Amazon Echo Dot is a hands-free, Bluetooth speaker that can be operated with voice commands. The Dot can be synced with your wireless router and all of your smart devices including Nest and Samsung SmartThings, as well as other wirelessly controlled lights, fans, and sprinklers. You can tell the Dot to “play my music” to stream Prime Music, Spotify, or IHeartRadio through the device, your headphones, or Bluetooth speakers. The Dot will tell you how bad the traffic is, what weather can be expected, and list movie show timings. You can ask the Dot to tell you headlines from sources like NPR, CNN, Bloomberg, and Discovery News while you’re getting dressed, so that you know the latest buzz before you leave the door in the morning. These features help make everyday tasks a little easier. Tring! That’s your Dot reminding you to take that cake out of the oven- it works as an alarm clock, too.

2 – The Universal Switch

With dozens of tech gadgets buzzing in our instant environment, what if we had one super ‘switch of all switches’ that could turn on or off all electrical activity in a second, at our will, and without us getting off the couch?  Enter The Belkin WeMo Insight Switch! This Switch is a standard plug, but on steroids! It plugs into an existing AC outlet, connects to your WiFi network, and then lets you turn on or off whatever is plugged into the outlets, through its app- a lamp, fan, space heater, or what have you. If you suspect a device is using too much energy, you could have it automatically shut down once it hits a certain cost for the day. It even works with Amazon Echo, which is super convenient.

3 – Power Bank

Picture these scenarios: You’re hiking on top of a mountain, taking panoramic shots of the scenic sights, and as you reach the summit, your phone decides it’s time to play dead. Or you’re trying to drive with your phone’s GPS app, and your phone decides to leave you hanging. Chances are, you’ve probably been in a situation where your phone has died at the most inopportune time. That’s why, a portable battery charger, or Power Bank is something that you should definitely invest into. It gives you the freedom and power to power up to three dead devices while you’re out and about and not near a power source. These power banks are small and super-easy to carry. The next time your phone dies before you can call that cab home, you know what you have to do.

4 – Tile

If you’re forgetful or have too many gizmos to keep track of, the Tile Mate is made for you. This little gadget is designed to loop onto or attach to, well, just about anything else you own. Once attached, the tracker sends location data to an app on your phone. If you don’t know where you put your keys, you can send the Tile Mate command to ring. The diminutive Bluetooth tracker can talk with (and remotely ring) your phone from over 100 feet away, telling you exactly where you left your particular item. If you’re worried you might lose something valuable, throw a Tile on it.

5 – Google Chromecast

The Google Chromecast is one of the best ways to use your regular TV as a smart device. The small, circular device plugs into an HDMI port on your television. Once there and connected to your Wireless internet, it can stream a heady range of entertainment apps, such as Netflix, Go, Hulu, and HBO. Just plug it in, pair it with your phone, tap your app’s Cast button, and enjoy. The $35 price-sticker doesn’t hurt, either. If you’ve ever wanted to smarten up your speakers, the Chromecast Audio is just as simple to use. Chromecast comes with thousands of apps and more than 30 million songs and radio stations. Better yet, it includes a mirroring feature so you can beam what’s on your Android phone to the TV.

Get yourself equipped with these smart gadgets and make your life a walk in the park!

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^^^ Thank you again to Amelia for updating my readers on the latest and greatest technology that’s on the market! What is one gadget that you can’t live without? Do you think you could handle a day without your smartphone? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Groom-Tastic Gifts For Your Well-Preened Friends

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Groom-Tastic Gifts For Your Well-Preened Friends

You know who the worst people to buy gifts for are? It’s the people who love their grooming and take lots of time every morning to make sure that they look their best. They won’t be interested in anything other than grooming gifts, but you might be nervous about buying these as you may assume that they already have their favorite brands and products on lock in their cabinets. However, you may find a product that they will actually love. You might even find something that they didn’t even know existed before! So, ready to go shopping for your well-preened friends? Here are some awesome gift ideas.

Hair Shavers: If you are shopping for a guy, you might want to consider some hair clippers and shavers. These will greatly reduce their bills at the barbers! With shavers, they can cut their hair on their own and to their preferred style so there is no risk of a hairdresser getting it wrong! There are certain types of shavers that you may wish to consider. For example, if you know your guy friend is worried about losing their hair as they age, you may want to buy them a pair of balding clippers. You can find out more about these online at sites like http://www.manlymatters.net/balding-clippers/.

Perfume & Aftershave: There is no doubt that your friend will want to smell just as good as they look! If you know which perfume or aftershave your friend prefers, buy them a new bottle. If you are feeling brave and want to find them a new favorite, then take a look in your local department store in the fragrances section. One cool idea is to see if their favorite celebrity has brought out a fragrance. For instance, One Direction have their very own fragrance: https://www.onedirectionfragrance.com. What more could a fan girl want?!

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Smell goods for days

Gift Cards: If you are really worried that you might buy your friend something that they don’t like or don’t want, there is one easy solution. Just buy them a load of gift cards! This way, they can take their time to browse the shops themselves to find something they truly want or need. If you know what their favorite clothing or makeup store is, see if you can get them some vouchers for that specific shop. Alternatively, you could look for an Amazon gift card, as Amazon now has lots of good fashion and beauty products in stock.

Pampering Session: As well as looking good, your friend will no doubt want to feel good! After all, how we feel on the inside will greatly affect how we look on the outside. So why not treat your friend to a pampering session in your local spa or beauty salon? You could book them in for a facial, massage, or a manicure. If you want to push the boat out, you could even book them in for a full day of massages and beauty treatments!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

All Done Holiday Shopping!!

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All Done Holiday Shopping!!

Hey everyone and happy Thursday! This past week I completely finished all of my holiday shopping – gifts wrapped and all and let me tell you, I could not be happier! If there’s one thing that rings true about my style of holiday shopping, it’s that it is all done online, as my featured image says. You can call me the Queen of the Amazon because Amazon.com is always my go to website for gift purchasing.

In my family, I have five people to shop for as well as my boyfriend and best friend, so figuring out the perfect gifts for seven people proved to be a bit difficult. But fear not! I am going to share with you guys my techniques to getting your holiday shopping done as efficiently as possible:

  1. Set a Price Limit: The first thing that I do when the holiday season rolls around is set a price limit for how much I am comfortable spending. Whether that be in total or for each individual person, I make a budget and try very hard to stick to it. Once you know what price range you’re working with, is when you can narrow down the type of presents that you will be giving.
  2. Create Your Gifting Style: What are your go to’s when it comes to gift giving? My method of choice is giving presents that are compatible with a person’s favorite hobby. Do they like gardening or working outdoors? Pick out a sweet bird feeder and some seed packets! How about baking? Snag some must have ingredients in a cook’s arsenal like flour, sugar, and some cute cookie cutters. Once you know your style of gift giving, it should be easy to come up with some great ideas for everyone you need to shop for.
  3. Make a List: And check it twice! After you establish your gift giving style, create a list that can be subject to change for your shopping that needs done. I composed an email to myself for all of my shopping that included who I was buying for and gift ideas for each person. As I completed different purchases, I went back to the email and edited it with a big “DONE!” next to each thing that I could check off. This helped keep me organized and it kept me on target for what I wanted which helped me avoid senseless purchasing that strayed from my list.
  4. Scour the Deals: If you’re shopping at the local mall or from the comfort of home, it is important to make sure that you are getting the best deals for your purchases. Sign up for email updates for the stores that you plan on hitting up to receive notifications of upcoming promotions and discounts. If you are a fan of shopping online, like myself, then I cannot recommend downloading Honey enough! They will hook you up with all of the best promotions for the site that you’re shopping on without having to search for promo codes or discounts. So handy!
  5. Keep Organized: As you finish up your shopping and begin receiving the parcels that you ordered make sure that you keep everything nice and organized. Set aside space in your closet for your present stockpile and continue to reference your list in regards to your purchases and budget. Then, once all of your shopping is done, pencil in an hour or two to wrap up your presents to avoid prying eyes in the home!

Holiday shopping can be stressful but it doesn’t have to be! If you keep chipping away at your list a bit at a time, soon you will have a present stockpile just begging to be wrapped! Believe me, the sigh of relief you can breathe once you’re all done will make it all worth it!

What is your gift giving style? What is your favorite gift that you have ever received? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Amazon Freebie

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Amazon Freebie

Hi everyone and TGIF! I am finally getting up to date on all of my summer purchases posts and this one pertains to my new favorite sweatshirt that I got on Amazon for FREE! Thanks to completing surveys on IPoll, I received a twenty-five dollar Amazon gift card in April or so. Since then, the card has been burning a hole in my pocket but after watching Animal House with my parents last month, I knew just what to spend it on. Take a look:

Animal House is one of my favorite movies because it’s basically the original Old School – which happens to be another one of my favorites! In Animal House, the “COLLEGE” sweatshirt that Bluto sports while downing a bottle of Jack always cracks me up. The shirt is just so ridiculous and as soon as I saw it while watching the movie last month, I knew that I wanted one of my own.

After the movie was finished, I turned to Amazon and hoped that they would have one for a reasonable price. I was in luck because they had a great selection and all of the sweatshirts seemed to be in my gift card budget and had excellent reviews. I was able to snag my Animal House style sweatshirt for twenty-seven bucks but thanks to my gift card and the points that I accumulated from my Amazon credit card, I got it FO FREE! Now that’s what I call ballin on a budget!

So there you have it, my Animal House Amazon Freebie! What is your favorite crazy college kids movie? What is your favorite quote from Animal House? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. –Sarah