I have expensive taste; I have a knack for picking out the priciest dress on the rack and my eyes go straight to the $41 cioppino on Craig’s dinner menu, skipping over the variety of pastas in the $20-range. As the saying goes, I’ve got champagne taste on a beer budget (it’s true, I love me some champs).  However, I’m also a sucker for a good deal, a lover of a steal, and a big promoter of the following eight inexpensive items that revolutionized my life.

8.  Netflix – $7.99 a month, available at www.netflix.com

I have two words for you – Breaking. Bad.  I know, I know, I’m very late to the party but at least I can still attend. Netflix has a variety of movies and full seasons of awesome shows; it’s enough to keep you entertained 24/7 if you so chose. A movie ticket alone cost more than a full month of Netflix. And, unlike going to see a movie, while watching Netflix, no pants are required (I live alone). 

7.  Almond Milk, avg. $2.99 for a 32 oz carton, grocery stores everywhere

Back when I was a young girl, cows were the only ones in the milk game.  Who knew, that several other kitchen items would later come onto the scene – almonds, soy, coconut, hemp, rice, the possibilities are endless! Personally, I like almond milk the best because it’s low-cal, taste good and lasts way longer in my fridge than cow’s milk does.  In my situation, it’s probably just some extra flab, but milk does cause bloating in several people – more than one in ten adults is lactose intolerant. Why risk it?

6.  Pandora – FREE at www.pandora.com

I get tired of things very quickly. I don’t want to commit to buying a song on iTunes only for me to get sick of listening to it a few days later.  Pandora lets me listen to the music I like and makes the playlist for me. I don’t have to waste hours trying to pair the sounds of Billy Joel with Jason Derulo, I’m no DJ. Pandora, the music app for the lazy woman.

5. Tim Tams (or as they are referred to in America – Arnott’s) $4.49 at World Market http://www.worldmarket.com/

I studied abroad in Australia my junior year of college and was introduced to the most amazing after dinner treat ever – Tim Tams. The cookies are good alone, but what makes them special is what happens when you “Tim Tam Slam.”  To slam, you must have a warm beverage on hand (I prefer warm milk or coffee). You first make two small bites on diagonal corners of the cookie. You then put one bite into the beverage and the other in your mouth. As if it were a straw, you pull the hot liquid through and once you feel the cookie melting, eat it! You may look like you’re bending over doing drugs, but this high is totally legal.  For full details see the chart below:

4. Crate and Barrel Pun Plates –  $2.95 each http://www.crateandbarrel.com/carrot-pun-plate/s665699

What? Engaged couples aren’t the only ones who can get kitchenware from Crate and Barrel? I know, I was surprised as well. On a recent trip to get the aforementioned engagement gift, I fell in love with these adorable pun plates.  Every time I use them, they make me giggle. They’re a real Crate and Barrel of fun! Sorry, they just make me feel all punny.

3. Someecards – FREE at http://www.someecards.com/ecards


I try to send cards to friends on their birthdays and other special occasions, but sometimes (most times) I just don’t have a stamp (and there’s no way I’m going to the dead zone that is a post office) – ah, the struggles of life. Someecards has the most hilarious online cards, including ones that you can send for offbeat reasons such as to flirt, gripe about work and send ridiculous confessions that you really mean but you can say you’re just sending ironically…  
2. Trader Joe’s Wines – $1.99 and up, Trader Joe locations everywhere http://www.traderjoes.com/stores/index.asp

The well-renowned “Two-Buck Chuck”  (Charles Shaw) allows you to drink wine like you live in Italy – with breakfast, lunch and dinner (not that I recommend this).  Sometimes, if I’m feeling classy, I’ll even splurge and get a bottle that’s around $5.99, but that’s only if I’m trying to impress people.

      1.    The Grande Chignon –  $5.19 Available at Sally Beauty Supplies  http://www.sallybeauty.com/brown-grande-chignon/SBS-463600,default,pd.html#q=bun&start=10

Or as if is referred to in laymen’s terms, the sock bun. This little thing has hands down changed my life for the better. It looks as though you put time and effort into doing your hair. It can even be a red carpet look without the cost.

 I can barely braid my hair, so if a styling-challenged gal like myself is able to do it, anyone can. It’s the easiest thing in the world. I’ve used it on dry and wet hair and it has significantly cut down my getting ready time.  It really gives that “I respect this job and I dress up for it” look when what it really means is, “I completely overslept and there’s no way I’m wearing my hair down.”

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