Friday, May 2, 2008

Rumor Has It, It's Springtime. Somewhere.

It sure as hell doesn’t look like this in the TC today.

Tip Of The Day: Cheap and fabulous spring rituals. What do YOU do to get in the springtime mood?

Tip For The Weekend: Go to a Bat Mitzvah! That’s what I’ve got cookin’ this Saturday – that, and copious amounts of real estate-ing.
So, congratulations to Little Amy on her very important day. Question – what does one buy a small person for their Bat Mizvah?

Further Elucidation Of My Cheap Deal: The birds are chirping (damn birds, waking me up), the sun is shining (one day a week, if we’re lucky), and the grass is green (and yellow and brown and matted down and coated with the sand used to treat our snowy roads…) – in short, it’s springtime (but not for Hitler) in Minnesota.

I have a few ways of greeting the spring – even when it’s been as sucky as this spring has been. Here is the short list of the cheap things I do to welcome springtime into my heart. And all that other happy hoo-hah.

Please Note: All the products mentioned below can be found at Target (or Walmart, if you insist), and cost less than $20. But of course.

1. Skin tune-up. Eventually, it will be warm enough here to wear more skin-bearing clothes. Therefore, I ramp up my self-tanning program in the spring. I don’t want to blind others with my winter-pale skin, don’cha know.
I rotate between the Target knock-off of Jergen’s Gradual Tanner in Fair, Dove’s Gradual Tanner, and Loreal Paris’s Sublime Bronze Gradual Self-Tanning Lotion.
I also start bleaching the (UNGODLY DARK AND THICK) hair on my arms, in preparation for short sleeves. For this, I use Sally Hansen’s Extra Strength Cream Hair Bleach for Face, Arms, and Legs.

2. Body tune-up. Every spring, I try on all my summery clothes. And every spring some (read, ALL) of them don’t fit very well. Which means every spring I hit the gym harder. I also try to stop eating as if I’m competing to win a contest for “Who can cram the most fat grams down their throat?”
My new favorite thing? Cut-up apples spritz’d with fresh lemon juice. The juice keeps the apple from turning brown, and adds a teensy bit of vitamin C. I think.

3. Dust the blinds and open all the windows. As soon as it’s above 60 degrees for even 5 minutes at a time, I open every window in my house to air out the accumulation of winter ick. First, though, to prevent a full-on allergy Apocalypse, I dust my blinds.
Thank God for Swiffer Dusters. They make dusting your blinds a 10 minute sprint, instead of the hours-long ordeal it used to be. I know my boyfriend, Al Gore, frowns on the use of Swiffers (they are FILLING our landfills with WASTE), but then, he doesn’t do windows. Or dust my blinds.

4. Go for a walk with my Ma. Every Mother’s Day, come hell or violent downpours (or SNOW), Ma and I go for a long walk in one of the TC’s many parks. I think this year we’ll stroll along Minnehaha Parkway heading east – which will conveniently land us at Liberty Custard on Nicollet.
Walking is free, folks, which leaves us plenty of money for a cone (or TWENTY) at Liberty. Yum.

5. Big Splurge – Get a pedicure. I know pedicures cost more than $20. But if you go here, you will see they are allowed in The $20 Or Less Challenge:
See? So pedicures are JUST FINE. DON’T JUDGE ME. Also? I recommend LA Nails at Rosedale.

6. Make a paper sailboat and float it down the stream. Merrily, of course. Lou and I used to do this every spring – we would wait until the snow really started melting, fold up little “sailboats” from notebook paper, and float them down the snow-melt rivers to the awaiting gutters. Doesn’t that make our childhood sound innocent and idyllic?

There’s the short list of my Springtime Rituals – now let’s hear yours. What do you do to get ready for spring?


This just in from one of my fave readers, Parker’s Mom:

“… after reading your post about healing (where, of course, I spoke ever so fondly of Vicks) I remembered that about a month ago I signed up to get a rebate from Airborne.

Have you heard about this?

Apparently, they faked their clinical trials. And now instead of taking it off the market (after all, it's not BAD for us, it just may not work as well as we think it does) they are offering to pay people back for what we paid for it! And you don't need a receipt! They'll give each person up to 63.00 back! You just have to check on what you bought and say which store you bought it at.

I haven't gotten my check yet (I submitted my claim about a month ago). Anyway if you are interested in that at all, just google it. Here is a website to check out, too: Once there, go to "file a claim online."

So, our Focus Group Question (a two-parter) is this – do you use and/or recommend Airborne?
And do you know of any other settlements, like this one, where we can get our hands on FREE MONEY?

Thanks, Parker’s Mom! You can check out her blog over there on the right.

You will also find another new link, TC Coupons, on the right. Check them out for steals and deals in our fair metro.


Lou said...

I also remember stomping on ice chunks to see the streams of water below...

The boys are into collecting dead worms from the 'river' at the end of our driveway. I don't think we ever did that.

I need a recipe for worm cookies with all the dead worms in the bucket.

Now, I'd like to put in that if we think back to mother's day and trips to Stillwater (for my b-day) it is usually cold, chilly and rainy. As a mother I say, "Don't put your long-johns away until the end of May"


Parker said...

I am so curious to see if anyone else has heard of this Airborne thing. I got the link from my Uncle, who checked it out on

Thanks for sharing the info with the WORLD, Erin! ;)

Rachel (aka Parker's Mom)

Michelle said...

I do still use Airborne and I love it. The problem with the lawsuit is people thought it prevents colds, which it never said on any of the packaging. I like Airborne because it lessens the effects of a cold and boosts my immune system. I also like to use it whenever I feel rundown. I've neve expected it to be the miracle cold curer.

Mrs. G. said...

Today I had my first pedicure of the spring, tomorrow I wear sandals. Yay!

mia said...

I do not use Airborne and I've never used it.

I actually use public transportation on a daily basis, and I just follow the same common sense basic rules whether I'm traveling on the subway or on a plane that day: I try to remember to take a multivitamin daily and I drink a lot of water and try to wash my hands whenever I can. If I'm on a long flight, I might take an aspirin. It prevents headaches and scary blood clots.

This all seems to work fairly well for me, but maybe years of being in crowded places has boosted my immune system.

Tundrababe said...

I still say Airborne works and will take it again. Even if it's psychosomatic - it got me through a trip to Hawaii without being sick. Maybe I believed in it strongly enough to create immunity? I don't care, I will always love you Airborne!