Birthday Freebies!

August 10, 2009 at 2:16 pm (Freebies) (, , , , , , , )

Mr. Frugalicious and I celebrated our birthdays last week, and I wanted to take advantage of as many freebies as possible. However, Mr. Frugalicious is the shy, retiring type, and he doesn’t like to spread the word about his birthday. I, on the other hand, think my birthday should be a national holiday.

The best birthday freebie out there right now is free admission to Disneyland. That’s right…a free day in the magical kingdom! (This offer is also good at Walt Disney World, for my East Coast friends.) In order to take advantage of this freebie, you need to sign up in advance. And you can only get in free on the day of your birthday in 2009. This posed a bit of a problem for us, since Mr. Frugalicious had his birthday on Monday, while mine was Tuesday. So, we ended up having to pay for his admission, but it was still worth it to spend a day at the happiest place on earth. Plus, some friends had a free parking pass, so we didn’t even have to pay the $12 to park in the Mickey & Friends lot. And I loved celebrating my birthday at Disneyland. I got a big “Happy Birthday” button to wear, and all the Disney cast members (as well as some complete strangers) wished me a happy birthday when they saw it. It made me feel very special, because I love to be the center of attention.

That night, we met some friends for dinner at PF Chang’s at Anaheim’s GardenWalk. I love PF Chang’s but they need to work on their birthday freebies. All I got was a mini dessert, which was, like, two bites of chocolate. The waiter did at least put a candle in it.

Although my birthday is over, the birthday freebies haven’t stopped. I found a great online resource called Hey, It’s Free!, which offers an extensive list of birthday freebies. I signed up for the Coldstone Creamery Birthday Club and got an email coupon for a free birthday creation. Best of all, it’s valid for a couple of weeks. And I love teppanyaki-style dining, so I was excited to join the Chef’s Table at Benihana. I got a $30 coupon to use anytime until August 31.

What are  your favorite birthday freebies? Please share!


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Why Junk Mail is Your Friend

July 29, 2009 at 2:36 pm (Coupon Savings) (, , , , )

I love getting the mail every day. Sure, it’s usually filled with bills, but sometimes, the mail contains a hidden treasure!

Every now and then, my father, who wishes to be known as the “Pater Familias” will slip a computer-generated check into a neat little windowed envelope and send it off to me. The amount might be $50 or $100…enough to pay a small bill or indulge in a little splurge. He does this because he pays all his bills this way, and the checks come in sets of three. So, if he has 11 bills to pay, he’ll use that blank 12th check to send me a little something. And it is always much appreciated.

But even if you don’t have a Pater Familias like mine, you might want to start scrutinizing your mail. Yes, it’s slippery and annoying and it slides all over the place and takes up space. If you look carefully, though, you might find something worthwhile. For instance, I just came across an advertisement for El Torito that offers “Penny Perks” every Thursday from 4 pm to close. If you order one of their six enchilada entrees, you can get unlimited enchilidas for just 1 penny more each! If enchiladas aren’t your thing, you can choose to add a side soup, side salad or sweet corn cake to your purchased entree. Thursdays also mean $2 off any Cadillac Margarita. Plus, this flyer includes two coupons, each for $10 off a purchase of $30 or more.

I don’t go to El Torito all that often, but the Penny Perks are enough to lure me in.

Val-Pak is another source of frugalicious offers. Yes, most of the coupons advertise housecleaning or closet organization or other dull but necessary chores. But sometimes there are treats to be found. For instance, I came across a coupon for a $39 introductory one-hour massage session at Massage Envy.

Here’s the thing…when I get stressed out, I carry all of the stress in my neck and my shoulders. My muscles lock up, and pretty soon, I am miserable. And my financial situation is more than a little stressful right now. So, I could really use a massage. One-hour massage at Burke Williams? $105. One-hour massage at Spa Gregorie’s? $95. I’ll take the Massage Envy deal.

If, like me, you’ve experienced an unfortunate reversal of fortune via a layoff or pay cut, check your mailbox. You might find a deal that will put a little fun back in your life.

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