Sunday, December 14, 2008

How to Find the Best Deals Online

Online shopping is becoming more popular and easier every day.  So, how to find the best deals?  It's pretty simple.  There are several websites that are devoted to helping you find the best online deals.

Here are the top five sites with blurbs about each site straight from their own "About Us" pages:
"The most frequently updated and complete deal site on the web! We provide you with the day's hottest deals every day. We also have over 800 coupons for all your favorite online stores. Browse around and you're bound to save more than a few bucks!"

Dealsplus (
"DealsPlus is an online social shopping website that offers a unique setting for users to share deals, coupons, shopping tips, and organize their shopping lists. DealsPlus is socially-driven, which means the best deals are hand-picked by our users."
"Every day, dealnews brings you the best deals available on the hottest items on the Internet. We scour over 2,000 online retailers and tens of thousands of deals to deliver the best 100+ deals each and every day — the kinds of deals you'd normally only see on Black Friday. We verify that each deal is valid, the lowest total price we could find, and from a reputable retailer. Then and only then do we post it for you. We take getting a bargain seriously, and then share what we find with you."
"Tim Storm launched in 1999, simply as one page, listing coupons for a handful of retailers. With the addition of a Hot Deals forum, became a community of savvy shoppers. As this community grew, Storm recognized the members as the pulse of not only but also the evolving marketplace.
Since its launch, has grown to include over 800 merchant partners. earns commissions on purchases members make through our Cash Back eligible merchants and we share part of our commission with the member. Why? Because when we share, we win!"
"At, savvy shoppers can instantly find and compare millions of unique products and services contained in 25 channels, such as Clothing, Babies & Kids, Books & Magazines, Cell Phones, Plans & Accessories, Computers, TV's, Furniture and Cameras. The website also offers shoppers the ability to view and compare over thousands of merchants and sellers and their respective pricing information for products and services, thereby enabling users to ultimately find the right product from the right merchant at the best price."

If you are going to buy this stuff new and online... then, for goodness sakes, at least get the BEST price possible!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

4-Star Restaurant Food at Fast Food Prices

I just made the greatest discovery - cooking schools have little restaurants where they sell the food they make each day!  Hey, this is amazing.

Cooking schools teach people to make all that fancy stuff that gets served in 4-star restaurants.  At the 4-star restaurant, you will pay about 4 times as much money as you will at the school restaurant.

Yes, it is true that the ambiance at the school cafeteria/restaurant is probably not the same as the 4-star restaurant, but when you are dining with a six and a ten year old... ambiance is NOT the most important thing.

Today, I got homemade (yes, from SCRATCH) mushroom soup - it was delicious - and tri-tip with sauteed mushrooms and some fancy thing on top and PERFECT veggies and PERFECT twice baked potatoes and a drink.  It cost less than a sandwich meal at Subway.

True, the entire item was served on styrofoam in the student cafeteria of the local community college, but I would be hard pressed to tell you when I had eaten a better meal.

I am hooked!  Now, I am going to search out cooking schools wherever I go.

Take note that a lot of the schools may not serve at dinner time. Being a school, they may serve at lunch.  Each school is different and you have to call and ask.

Here are a few places to start your search for cooking schools with restaurants in your area: is a site where you can find cooking schools all over the world.

Contact your local community college and ask them if they have a cooking school restaurant.

And if you happen to live near Pasadena, California, you might check out Bistro 561 - This is a restaurant that I have been dying to go to and now I have an excuse.  This isn't a super cheap restaurant (checkout the menu) but it is WAY cheaper than you will be paying once these chefs get their real jobs.  Also, I think that the ambiance at this restaurant will be pretty good.  I'll let you know.  They also have a tasting menu every Thursday and Friday. Per their website: "California School of Culinary Arts opened teaching Restaurant 561 to the public in February 2000, giving patrons a unique opportunity to dine within the classroom and experience firsthand the passion and creativity of tomorrow's culinary talent as students take the final step in their Le Cordon Bleu education."  Ooooh... doesn't that sound just divine?

No more fast food for my bargain hunting friends -  Bon Appetit!