Tag Archives: shop local

PatCatan’s Haul

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PatCatan’s Haul

Hellooo everyone! When my siblings and I were younger, I can always remember my mom taking us to the local craft store called PatCatan’s once summer vacation began. We would pick out different crafts and art supplies to keep us occupied and it has been our go to destination for those needs for over two decades.

Sadly, the store is being bought out by the bigger chain, Michael’s, and will be closing on September 30th. This is a major disappointment, because PatCatan’s is so well loved by everyone in my community. But, a huge haul because of the massive sale that they were having helped soften the blow. Take a look:

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I love nothing more than a good sale and everything that I purchased above was at least sixty percent off, making for maximum savings. I was able to get some early birthday presents for my bestie for a fraction of what I would have paid at Target. I just know that she will love her new throw blanket and the metallic pink mason jar filled with a bouquet of fresh flowers!

And, of course, lots of treats for myself were purchased, too. I indulged in a few things that I have always wanted, like the mermaid tail blanket and the wooden body model, which I will be displaying on my desk. The yellow parasol was also a must, too, as I am obsessed with my black one and have been using it often this summer.

I wasn’t expecting to find such cute accessories at a craft store and couldn’t say no to the hair clips, which I got for a dollar each and the blanket scarf for a whole five bucks! I am madly in love with the lip barrettes, which are so perfect and unique. I have worn them a few times already and the compliments have been pouring in. Such a fun new staple bought with pocket change!

I am so happy with all of my purchases above and I’d be a liar if I said that I didn’t want to hit up PatCatan’s again soon for some more shopping. I am hoping to get a head start on holiday gifts if I make another trip there, so we’ll see what happens!

Who else has had a good shopping haul lately? Where is your favorite place to shop for craft supplies? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Going Local: Enjoying Where You Live

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Going Local: Enjoying Where You Live

We are probably all a little guilty of spending too much time in our homes or venturing far away when we want to enjoy a little social time. It’s crazy to think that we choose to live somewhere because we love a location and then spend a majority of our time enjoying other places, instead!

Getting to know your area is great fun and brilliant for increasing your social circle, support unit, and even living a healthier lifestyle both physically and mentally. A great place to start is getting online and researching the history and culture of your home town and surrounding area. What is it famous for? Did any celebrities live here? What are the restaurants like? Getting an understanding through research can help introduce you to things you didn’t even know existed right on your doorstep.

The best way to understand a place, though, is to get involved with the community. You will probably have a local church, shop, or park with a variety of events happening and it is here that you will meet the experts on local knowledge. Getting out and meeting other parents will help you find out what activities you have within walking distance of your front door, it will also help your children and gives you the chance to spend quality time with your friends. Heading to the local bar is great for adults who want to know more about the services in the areas. Most small towns love to advertise other small businesses and will have attended all kinds of networking events with the owners. So get to chatting and find out what is on offer!

Taking long trips to the larger supermarkets is pretty time consuming. You can use the internet to find out what shops you have in your area. From seeking out a local green grocer to sticking donuts near me in your search engine, you’ll be surprised what you can buy locally to save you time and support local companies. Of course you will also have restaurants near you, too. The internet has loads of review sites to let you share feedback with other customers, although the best way to find out what the local buzz is is to hit the streets and eat. Try everything, one person’s bad experience may not reflect your own. Plus, you have the added benefit of not needing to drive, so you can enjoy a couple of drinks with your dinner!

Your local services such as the police and fire station are good things to know and if you have young children, they can offer a fun day visit. What kid doesn’t enjoy putting on a fire hat and watching people slide down poles? It’s also likely that you have some form of library even if it is a mobile library. Make the most of these services and support them where ever you can. More customers means better demand and you will see your area staying alive with shops and activities. If you lose them, then property values will decrease and your dream home may not be worth as much as you need it to be!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Monday Update: Vacation Purchases Edition

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Monday Update: Vacation Purchases Edition

Hi everyone and welcome to another week here on lifewithlilred. Unfortunately, I don’t have a lot of spare time to do hella blogging this summer but I will try my best to at least get a weekly post in via the Monday Update. As you guys know, my family went on vacation to Asheville, North Carolina a week ago and your girl did some amazing shopping there! Take a look at the latest goodies that I added to my wardrobe and beauty collections:

^^^ Hurray!

One thing that I absolutely love to do while I’m on vacation (and basically every day of my life) is SHOP. There is nothing better than exploring the different stores that places outside of your hometown have to offer. Usually during family vacas we dedicate a day to shopping local and hitting up an outlet mall if the area has one. During our shop day, I scored some amazing bath and body care products and my new favorite shirt from Forever 21, so let’s discuss!

While shopping local, we came across the most fantastic store called Appalachian Naturals which offers homemade bath and body care products. The shop was filled with bar soap, shampoos, bath bombs, and even some soap for your four legged BFFs. My mom and I must have spent close to an hour scouring the store, chatting with the employees, and filling a shopping bag with our purchases.

We ended up leaving with twelve bars of soap, a bar of soap for our pups, shampoo, chapsticks, a bath bomb, and a “meatball” made from excess shavings from the soap making process. The meatball was literally a pound ball of over thirty different soaps combined together and it’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever seen…so obviously we had to get it. Pictured above are three of the soaps that I wanted for myself – a face bar, and a Mountain Apple and Peppermint flavored bar soap. I’m very excited to work the complexion bar into my skin care routine after I finish the cleanser that I’m currently using and the same goes for the bar soap for when I finish the shower gel I have open.

At the outlet mall I was able to spend my birthday money on some new treats for myself which was so nice! I’m seriously obsessed with the gorgeous floral blouse that I got from Forever 21. I’m usually not a big fan of wearing white because I’m so pale that all it does is wash me out. However, this stark white top was so different because of the bright, Kimono style floral pattern. The colors complimented my hair and skin so well that the pure white base color made everything pop.

I’ve been trying to incorporate more business casual clothes into my wardrobe and I like that this shirt can be worn to work or my internship but I could still hang out with my friends in it. I purchased this shirt for $22.50 and I thought that it was a steal considering it looks so much like the clothes that I always ogle over at too expensive for me Express!

Speaking of steals, can we please talk about the Semi Annual Sale at Bath & Body Works?! Last year at B&BW’s sale, I discovered my favorite scent – Country Apple. This fragrance only makes an appearance during the Semi Annual Sale because it’s part of the oldie but goodie collection that they bring back special for the occasion. Knowing this, it was a must to stop in at the B&BW at the outlet mall to stock up on my gotta have it body spray.

All of the originally fourteen dollar body mists that were on sale were only $3.75 so, needless to say, I went HARD. I took four Country Apple sprays and four of the Mango Mandarin, too, because it smells amazing and it’s always nice to switch things up a little bit. As I walked up to the register, I remembered that back in good ol’ Ohio, there was a coupon for ten dollars off a forty dollar purchase sitting idly on my desk.

I was already at the thirty dollar mark with my bundle of perfumes and when I explained the situation to the worker behind the register, she was kind enough to provide the coupon for me. I was so incredibly thankful and went back to the front of the store to grab one more Country Apple and Mango Mandarin spray. I was at five perfumes each and I needed one more thing to reach a forty dollar purchase. I debated on which scent to get one more of – the apple or the mango but then realized that getting six of one and five of the other would drive me crazy. So I decided to go for a Sun Ripened Raspberry spray to get me to the price I needed to use the coupon.

Thanks to the kindness of the worker, my total bill for eleven body sprays was $33.44. The coupon knocked each perfume down to $2.86 for an originally FOURTEEN DOLLAR fragrance. Hell yeah! Because I was so grateful to the B&BW employee for helping a sister out, I emailed their customer service center to write her a rave review. I was so pleased to get an email response back from them saying that she would be receiving a certificate from the regional manager for excellence in customer service. She so deserved it! 🙂

So there you have it, this week’s Monday Update: Vacation Purchases Edition! I’m so happy with all of the goodies that I got to return to Ohio with and I can’t wait to start using all of them! Has anyone shopped any good sales lately? What store has the best deals right now? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

All Done Christmas Shopping!

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All Done Christmas Shopping!

Hey everyone and happy Tuesday! This past weekend I was SO happy to finally finish my Christmas shopping! I got a vast majority of my shopping done at Kohl’s, TJMaxx, and some local shops in downtown Kent. But this weekend, I broke out the big guns and let Amazon take care of the rest. I ended up saving a lot of precious time and moolah this year thanks to smart shopping and all I can say is…I’m glad it’s over. Let’s discuss:

I was really pleased with all of the items that I bought in person and because I had lots of great coupons and gift cards, I was able to save a lot of money, too! But after spreading the wealth in stores, I knew that there were things that would just be simply easier to buy online. That’s when Amazon and a beautiful gift card that my mom got from work came in.

I affectionately call myself the “Queen of the Amazon” because I really am. Give me an hour on that site and I’ll have a shopping cart full of the perfect gifts for everyone on my list. I spent some time writing out ideas of what to get everyone who I still needed to shop for and then I logged on to Amazon to browse what might work for each of them.

When I’m doing a big online shopping haul, I have a tried and true technique that I return to year after year:

  • Step 1) Make a handwritten list of gift ideas.
  • Step 2) Browse the ideas on Amazon and bookmark anything that might work.
  • Step 3) Mull it over.
  • Step 4) Return to the site a few days later to make your final decisions.

I bookmarked so many items on Amazon that I lost count and ended up forgetting a lot of the things that I had saved. But that’s the beauty of expanding your options far and wide. Because I picked out so many possibilities, there were only a chosen few items that I really remembered and those were the ones that I ended up going with each time. I’m all about picking items that are memorable, useful, and relevant to the person that I’m shopping for.

After I had time to think of each gift, I returned to Amazon one last time to make my final decisions. This is when I start the nitpicking. I look for the best price on the product, an item that will ship for free, and the one with the best reviews and ratings. My rating rule of thumb is that if it has less than four stars overall, then I don’t even consider it.

Once I’m 150% sure that I have the perfect gift for the best price, I add the item to the cart and repeat the process for the next product. Thanks to this ballin on a budget method, I ended up spending under one hundred dollars for SEVEN items and still had cash to spare on the gift card! Nice!

Thanks to smart shopping, coupons, gift cards, and having a keen eye for the best deal, I ended up spending a grand total of…Eighty dollars of my own money for multiple gifts for seven people! Not bad, not bad at all!

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I can’t say what I got for everyone because you never know who’s tuning in to lifewithlilred! BUT, I know for a fact that my dad doesn’t read my blog so I can say that I’m pretty excited for what I got him! My dad loves to travel and plans fantastic vacations so one of the gifts that I got him will definitely come in handy…A brand new atlas for 2016, which will be a vast improvement of his torn and used 2005 atlas that has never been updated. I think that after eleven years an upgrade was much needed! 🙂

I’m All Done Christmas Shopping and I couldn’t be happier! Now it’s time to sit back and relax until it’s time to start wrapping all of the presents up! Who is all done with their holiday shopping? Where do you usually do all of your shopping at? I wanna hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah