People, I had the best birthday I've had in years! I don't know why, but historically, my birthday has usually been a bad day. Not the sort of I-can't-believe-I'm-so-oooolllllldddd sort of bad day. Just the kind of day where you have to work and it's raining and you get in a fight with your mom and the bank account is empty and it's hot dogs again for dinner and you get stuck in traffic and you get bleach on your favorite shirt...you get the idea. Oddly enough, the day after is usually much better. But this year my birthday was on a Saturday and the whole weekend was awesome!
Friday Nick was off, and we had dinner with my brother and his wife and son in their new house, so I didn't have to cook and the meal was awesome! This was our first visit to their house since they moved in, and it was really neat to see them settled after a long struggle to find the right home. Before we stopped there we swung by my parents' house to drop something off, and my mom gave me my gift - a gift certificate for a massage! I've never had a professional massage, and I can't wait to use it!
Even though Nick had to work on my actual birthday, he got to come home early which never happens. But before he came home he called me with some good news about the house situation. Then when he got home he took us out to dinner and then dropped me off at Tuesday Morning and Joann and Michael's while he watched the kids. I found some great stuff at Tuesday Morning, including a couple of Christmas gifts that I saw last time and was afraid would get gone before I could get back and buy them. I had a gift card at Joann from Nick, so I got to go crazy in there. I came out with some AWESOME clearance stuff and still only spent half the gift card! Then at Michael's I had three coupons which allowed me to knock two things off my longtime Amazon wish list as well as buy a jewelry tool I didn't even realize how bad I needed until I found out it existed (hello, one step ear wire maker!). And I had a couple gift cards there from my awesome in laws that brought my out of pocket total to under $1! Then I got to go home and hop on Joann.com and use the rest of my Joann gift card on some more cool stuff, including the We R Memory Keepers Banner Punch Board, which I can't wait to get! I'm a total sucker for craft tools.
The next morning I got to go to church, and my mother and father in law handed me a card with some birthday money. The message was great, and after the service we went to lunch with my brother and his wife, after which they gave me my birthday gift from them, which was an Amazon gift card (yay!!). I'm still debating what I'm going to buy with it, but I'm thinking a Pick Punch (not an affiliate link).
But here is one of the coolest things that happened. There was recently a store opened near our house called Bargain Hunt. Now I had never heard of them before they opened a location here, but they're a pretty awesome store. They get random merchandise from other stores and mark it down to a great price. If it hasn't sold after a month, they mark it down 10% every day until it's 90% off their price. Sort of like Big Lots and an Easter egg hunt had a baby. My mom has found Lily a few dresses there that retailed originally for around $50.00 each and paid $1.49 for them. So anyway, Friday I was looked for a gift for someone there, and I walked down the craft aisle, and out of the corner of my eye I spied, way back under a shelf...a Minc Machine! The big one!
The box was a little battered, but it was still sealed up, and I almost hurt myself getting it in my buggy so fast. I looked at the price, and it was $61! That's 60% off retail! I've wanted one since they came out, but I just couldn't spend $150 on one when we're trying to buy a new house. Now granted, you can find them for around $100 now, but I've never seen one priced that low. I'm so excited! I try not to buy anything that's technically unnecessary that costs very much without asking Nick first, just out of respect for him as my husband and also the guy who works so I can stay home with the kids. So I actually saved the receipt just in case he wanted me to take it back, but then I got birthday money, which mostly paid for it anyway. Not that he was likely to tell me to return it in the face of the starry look in my eyes, haha!
I actually already had some accessories for it that I had gotten on clearance at Joann months ago, some foil and tags and scrapbook/journal embellishments. I had grabbed them because I wanted to try foiling with my laminator, and it worked okay, but I saved most of them in case I ever did get a Minc. And I'm glad I did, because it does a much better job with foiling than just a plain laminator because of all the different temperature settings. Not that I don't love my laminator. I might have laminated the first three papers Lily brought home from kindergarten. #thatleeeeetlebitcrazymom When I get my craft room I'm going to go nuts with the foiled prints for my walls. I've already got a strong start on a Minc themed Pinterest board. And I have big plans for the kids' rooms too!
In the meantime, I wanted to try it on something run on a copier, so I may or may not have foiled the church bulletin from last month that was hanging out in my car. Fancy!
Anyway, that's the amazing tale of how Tracy turned 38 in crafty/shopping mostly for free/no cooking/awesome family/really blessed style! I want to do this every year!