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Posts tagged ‘Walmart’

What Happened to Kindness and Etiquette?

As many of you know I work as a customer service agent taking incoming calls for many infomercial products. For the life of me I don’t understand why so many people calling in start out just plain angry and mean. You have called me so why are you giving me an attitude for trying to place your order? Sadly unless they are verbally swearing at me there is not much I can do but be overly dripping with sweetness in spite of their rudeness. Yes, sometimes that makes them even worse but I have to admit it makes “me” feel better!

I have seen this same thing in so many places like grocery store clerks just trying to help with a purchase and for no fault of their own being treated rudely. I once had a woman run the front of her grocery cart into the back of my ankles and not only did she not apologize but she seemed mad at me for being in her way and huffed as she ran around me. I almost wanted to catch up to her to sarcastically apologize for “being in her way” but I didn’t want to be on the 6pm news as the woman who got in a fight at Wal-Mart! I once worked at a car dealership that offered a 30 minute oil change. You would not believe the amount of people who would come completely unglued and just plain ugly because it took 35 minutes. Is it really worth chewing someone out because of 5 minutes?

Seriously what happened to teaching proper manners and etiquette towards others? Do people really feel entitled to treat others badly with no cause? To be angry and rude just to be angry and rude? Have you been to the schools recently? There is a serious lack of children with manners. It should not be an uncommon thing to have someone say thank you, please, and yes ma’am/sir yet it is. What ever happened to the phrase “treat others as you would want to be treated”? Is the common use of social media to blame since we have interactions without as much face to face contact as in the past? There is a  serious lack of respect and a growing feeling of entitlement in the world today. Doesn’t it seem like so many people are out to get what the want and to heck with everyone else? We share this world and it would be a little more peaceful if everyone took the time to treat others with respect.

I certainly am not a saint and have had plenty of situations where I am sure I deserved some backlash from someone, but I have to admit being on the receiving end of someone’s rant for no fault of my own even if they are a stranger is not a fun experience. I am not being paid to be your punching bag so go take a Midol, Prozac, Valium or go call a therapist and “chilax” already!

What do you think about manners and etiquette in today’s society?

Where was this stuff when my kids were younger?

As a parent I have serious baby and toddler product envy!  I have noticed lately how many products are out there that if they had been available when my kids were babies and toddlers I totally would have bought it.  Obviously I was not the only one who found challenges when raising babies and toddlers  because these new products are popular for a reason.  With a few of these new conveniences life would have run much smoother.  Those inventors are now making millions off my pain and suffering.  Well, maybe not actual pain and suffering but certainly frustration and a little hair pulling (my hair not my kids, just in case you were wondering)!

In all the trips to Wal-Mart, Target, Department Stores, and baby stores like Babies R Us these are just a few of the things I had never seen when my kids were younger.

  • Cart Covers: Although I would put a blanket down and wipe the child area of the cart down I totally would cringe when I would turn around and see my child sucking on the hand rail. They also could only last so long before they got tired of sitting and I am sure part of that is because the seat is hard and uncomfortable!
  • Diaper & Toiletries Organizer: We did our best to organize with plastic buckets and such but this just looks better and hangs on the side of the crib.  How awesome is that!
  • Juice Box Holder: My kids usedSippy Cups forever because I didn’t want things to spill. Juice boxes are more convenient for traveling and do not require refrigeration.  My kids would always end up squeezing them too hard or laying them down where they would leak out.  These would have been helpful to transition them from sippy cups to juice boxes.
  • Spill Proof Snack Cup: We always had snacks available when out but just in regular snap lid containers.  We always found those little hands would dive in for the snacks and spill half of them on the floor or the container would just get knocked over.  This allows them to help themselves without all the mess.
  • Snack & Play Travel Tray: We had daily trips in the car and often they were for an hour or longer.  Although we would have snacks and activities it often was distracting to have a child wanting something and having to hand it to them while driving.  This would have been perfect to set them up with snacks and play items along with a table top to do things on and they would have been set!

What new products do you wish you had for your children when they were young? If you’re a parent of young children now what products do you find most useful so I can add them to my “I wish I would have had that” list?

Spender or Saver?

I saw an article on Yahoo the other day that discussed people who are tightwads or spendthrifts and identifying which you are. At first I thought this is easy I am a saver because I love to coupon shop and price-match at Wal-Mart.  But then reality hit me as I had to be honest with myself about how I really shop.  I am one who will be upset to pay outrageous prices for milk, cheese, medications, bread, fresh fruits and vegetables, clothes, shoes and just about all the necessities.  I however will not think twice or even look at the cost when throwing chips, cookies, ice cream and soda in my cart.  So does that really qualify me as a saver when I don’t have a care in the world how much my snack cravings may be costing me but a gallon of milk will set me off?

It is a great article to read because it talks about the psychological impact of spending on both tightwads and spendthrifts.  Does spending/saving make you happy or sad?  Can you really feel guilt by both saving and spending? The article also talks about how relationships function with these different attributes and what works best for a happy healthy relationship.

Click here to check out the article!

Are you a spender or saver?

Best Crock-Pot Curry Chicken!

My husband had asked me to make some curry chicken after having some at a restaurant at the airport.  He found me an amazing recipe that I have changed the steps slightly to allow for an easy to make crock-pot meal instead of spending so much time in the kitchen cooking on the stove-top.  This is quickly becoming one of my top 10 dishes because the chicken just melts in your mouth and the sauce is packed with so much flavor!  There is a warning though.  If you cook this in the crock-pot while being at home all day it will be torture because it smells amazing and whatever you do don’t sneak a taste of it because I guarantee you won’t want to stop!

What is great is it includes my new best friend “Greek Yogurt” as one of the ingredients.  This is a spicy dish but can be modified by reducing the amount of red pepper flakes and chili powder as desired. It does require numerous spices but I found I had most of them already at home.  The one that I did not have was cardamom which I found to be expensive at Wal-Mart (around $11 for regular size bottle) but I since have seen it cheaper at other stores like Hubble and Hudson and will be looking at World Market and other specialty stores.  I am sure these spices can also be found cheaper online for a larger quantity and for the amounts of spice used in this and other similar recipes it may be better to eventually buy them in the larger bulk size.

See below for this amazing recipe.  Make it this week and let me know what you think!

Please share your experience with cooking Indian inspired foods and post your recipes!

Ingredients:

3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs

1 large yellow onion diced

3-4 cloves garlic, minced

10 pearl onions, peeled and cut in half

1 tbsp lemon juice

4-5 tsp olive oil

1/2 cup plain Greek Yogurt

1 14.5 oz can petite diced tomatoes

1 tsp dried red pepper flakes

1 tsp dried mint leaves

1 1/4 tsp ground ginger

1 1/2 tsp ground cloves

1/4 tsp pepper (or freshly ground peppercorns)

1/2 tsp cardamom

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tbsp chili powder

2 tsp turmeric powder

2 tsp coriander powder

2 bay leaves

prepared Jasmine Rice or Basmati Rice

Prepare a container with all the dried spices together except the bay leaves. (red pepper flakes, mint leaves, ginger, cloves, pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, chili powder, turmeric, coriander). Saute pearl onions to a skillet with olive oil until slightly brown. Add the diced yellow onion and minced garlic (I use a food processor to chop the yellow onion and garlic up really fine). Saute vegetables for about 5 minutes. Reduce heat and add the spice mixture and stir. Add the can of tomatoes (if you don’t like chunks of tomato you can also briefly put this in food processor). Stir in the Greek Yogurt and mix well. Prepare the crock-pot and lay chicken thighs on the bottom. Pour the  tomato spice mixture over the top of the chicken and add two bay leaves. Set the crock-pot on the low setting and let it cook for 6 or more hours. Remove bay leaves before serving. Serve with jasmine or basmati rice.

Weekly Shopping with Coupons & Price-Matching

As I sat doing my weekly preparations for my Saturday morning grocery shopping I thought this would be something fun to share how I have tinkered with this and that to come up with a plan that with a little work makes the whole process run smooth and saves us some money.

I get stopped almost every time I shop to ask me about how I got so organized with my coupons and ads for price-matching.  I always tell them what I am telling you now.  I am not an expert. I am very much still in the armature stage compared to those I have learned from. Two dear friends have some very popular, user-friendly and very informative websites.  They are the resources I used for learning how to coupon effectively and to learn about price-matching at Wal-Mart.  To learn more visit www.mylitter.com to learn about couponing and www.iheartthemart.com to learn about all things Wal-Mart including price-matching.

During the week I cut out all my coupons and organize all the store ads I will use for price-matching.  I get coupons from the local paper and online.  You can learn more about places to find online coupons from both of the websites I recommended.   The Target and pharmacy store ads are normally in the local Sunday paper and the other local grocery store ads usually come during the week in the mail.

On Friday night or Saturday morning this is what I do to prepare for my shopping at Super Wal-Mart:

1.  Make a menu of meals for the week.  Making a menu helps to not only have a plan for the week but also saves money because we only buy what we need for those meals and I then can stock up on additional items on sale.  I usually go through the house to see what I already have before buying it again at the store. Then I replenish my stock items when I find them on sale or have coupons.

2.  Make a grocery list off the menu.

3.  Go through all the ads to check for price-match items for things on my grocery list but also look for special deals to stock up on items especially if I can use a coupon to save even more.  I usually circle each item with a red pen.  If the item had 4 for $10 I write the amount for one next to it since Wal-Mart has to put each item in at the price per each.  This just makes that process easier at checkout for everyone.

4.  I take a post-it note and write all the price-match items on it to keep on the front page of my binder to refer to as I am grocery shopping and help when I am checking out.

5.  I then go through my coupons to pull out all that go with my grocery list and price match items and pull them to the front of my binder for easy access as shopping.  I do take the whole binder because often I find deals as I am going and can find a coupon for it.

6.  When I get to the store I put my binder in the front child seat section.  On the front page I have my grocery list,  price-match list and my ads  to refer to. As I shop I pull the coupons out of the binder for each item I put in my cart and put those coupons all together to hand the clerk at checkout.

7.  I always put items I am price-matching in a certain area of my basket because when I am checking out I put them on last.  Items need to be price-matched at the time they are scanned and this is just easier to do it all at the same time.  I also try to place items I am price-matching from the same ad next to each other so when they are being scanned I am not fumbling back and forth between ads.

8.  I often will place an ad over the items I am price-matching so that as the clerk gets to the end she knows to stop.  This way if I am distracted by loading my basket or heaven forbid a child that has all my attention I don’t miss getting to price-match those items.

9.  I also try scan items towards the end that have a coupon that needs the price written on it.  That way if I forget the price they can find it easily at the end of the receipt instead of looking at the really long list of items trying to find it.

Again I am not an expert but I have developed a plan that works for me and keeps me organized.  There is nothing worse than getting in line and being frazzled with your ads and coupons while having a clerk and other customers waiting on you.  Making a menu, couponing and price-matching have been the three things that have saved us a ton of money.  If you do not have a plan just start small with making a menu each week. Look at the two websites I mentioned to learn about couponing and Wal-Mart price-matching and just take those baby steps until you get a routine that works for you!

What ideas and suggestions do you have that make saving money and shopping a smooth experience?