Aren't long weekends just wonderful? Especially 4-day long ones? I'm loving that I feel like the long Thanksgiving weekend was more like a mini vacation... and I'm loving it even more knowing that thanks to my AWESOME company, there's just 3 and a half short weeks left before a glorious week and a half off. That's right, I get winter break! As if the holidays don't already make me giddy like a school kid, getting all that time off makes it all even sweeter.
I made a comment to my mom the other day about how I have a "handful" of readers, and she promptly stopped me and stated that there's probably a whole lot more people that read this than I realize. So, whether that's true or not, in the spirit of Thanksgiving I would just like to take this opportunity to let each and every person reading this know that I am thankful for you. This blog has been a great way for me to document my first taste of home-ownership, and knowing that anyone else cares enough to read along is a huge compliment to me.
Speaking of being thankful, I also need to make a little blog shout-out to my Uncle Joe and Aunt Marie and to the Lawlers, for welcoming us into their homes once again and stuffing us full of TWO delicious Thanksgiving feasts. As usual, the highlight for me was my late Grandma von Ebers' cheesecake, which my aunt and uncle make every year for Thanksgiving. This year was extra special for me though, because as an official homeowner my aunt presented me with a copy of the secret recipe, which I absolutely cannot wait to try out. Apologies up front though, the recipe really is secret, and therefore will not be appearing on the blog... per my aunt's orders. :)
So, after stuffing ourselves full of two amazing Thanksgiving dinners and stopping by two others, Dan and I headed home to scour the Black Friday ads and try to decide if anything was actually worth waking up before the sun. As per usual, nothing screamed "HAVE to have it"... but we got up in the middle of the night to go shopping with all the crazies anyways. I'm going to use the fact that Manda wanted to join us for her first Black Friday experience ever as the excuse for why we went, but in reality it's just because I absolutely do not have the will power to pass up a decent sale and buy a bunch of stuff that I don't need.
Like the little toaster-sized deep fryer I scored at Kohl's at 4am for $10. Yep.
Honestly though, since I refuse to listen to Christmas music until the day after Thanksgiving, pumping Frosty the Snowman at 3:30 in the morning long before the sun comes up is my favorite way to kick off the holiday season. Being in the car with my two favorite people while we laugh at the lines of people hoping to get their hands on a plasma TV makes it all the better!
Other random finds of the morning included a hamper set (thrilling, I know) and 13' telescoping collapsible ladder from Menard's, a couple new tool toys for Dan at Home Depot, a new pair of shoes for each of us, and a $24.99 Sunbeam stand mixer that Dan grabbed for me at Fry's to replace my obnoxiously turbo-powered hand mixer from last Black Friday...
The only major "doorbuster" we went out for was a new monitor at Best Buy for Dan's computer, since his old one suddenly decided to stop working a few weeks ago. Thankfully, we did NOT have to stand in line overnight like hundreds of other people tend to do at the big box electronics stores, and we were able to just stop by Best Buy later in the afternoon to pick it up.
While all of the little random unnecessary things are fun and will definitely be put to good use, my major purchase of the year was actually on Thanksgiving, when I bought something online that I have wanted forEVER and (believe it or not) saved for... my very first, very own, Macbook!!!
Thanks to Dan being a savvy online shopper, he found the Black Friday Macbook deal that Best Buy was having available online on Thanksgiving, which saved us from having to battle the crowds at 4am when the store opened. The computer itself was the same price as always, but came with a $150 Best Buy gift card. He also found out that if I purchased through bing.com I would get 10% cashback, which comes to $100 when you're talking about a $999 Mac. Not bad!
So, the final deal breakdown: $999 retail price - $150 Best Buy giftcard - $20 Best Buy rewards - $100 Bing cashback = $729 plus tax and shipping.
The giftcards will be used to purchase a new camera I've had my eye on but wasn't quite ready to splurge on - the Nikon L100, which is currently on sale for $199 at Best Buy. I'm crossing my fingers I get the giftcards in the mail before the sale is over as it's regularly $229.
Unfortunately I have to wait for my snazzy new toy to come in the mail, but I absolutely cannot wait. Hopefully by next weekend I'll be blogging from my Macbook!