Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Old Navy Winner!!

With a total of 44 entries, (one entry for a comment, one entry for rss (or email), one entry if you became a (Google) follower of the and one entry if you tweeted the giveaway), I used to determine that the winner was . . . . . . :

#6: sswint bargain hunter said... Also, I would love to see restaurant and entertainment ideas/bargains! I loved Jen's recent post on bday freebies.
(She is referring to my wife's blog ThriftyNWMom. )

Congratulations!! I will send you an email to confirm your address and then I will send you the coupon!

For everyone else, thanks for entering, and keep an eye out for great deals that I can find, and for another giveaway in the near future!

Free (today only) software for backing up and copying a complete hard drive is my favorite site for finding freebies (one of only a couple buttons I have on the right hand site of my blog here). Every single day they offer full versions (versus trial versions) of some type of software that would normally cost you money. The software is licensed, there are always plenty of reviews, and it is totally and completely legal. It's not a file-sharing service, but an opportunity for businesses who want to promote a piece of software.

Today's giveaway is Drive Backup Professional (version 9.0) by Paragon software, a VERY reputable software company (currently $40 from Amazon). You usually see their software next to the big boys like Norton or Nero. Here is a description from the website:

  • Backup and Restore your system without the time consuming process of applications setup and customization in the event of a system crash.
  • Paragon File-level backup – An innovative file-level protection system that allows users to protect all files documents from damage through the creation of a backup copy.
  • Use Cyclic Backup – “Set it and forget it” backup policy that performs regular backups and automatically manages them.
  • Paragon Adaptive Restore- A powerful and unique technology which allows restoring Windows Vista on completely different hardware or even on a virtual machine.
  • And much more.
Our computer's hard drive crashed about four or five months ago. It really sucked. I was mad, my wife was screaming "Where's my pictures???!!!" and I had no idea what to do. It had never happened to me before, so I thought it was pretty rare, but as it turns out, it isn't. It literally just didn't work one day. There was no warning, no time to take it in to get it fixed, nothing. We tried to turn on the computer and got a blank, black screen. We lost months and months of pictures, important document, and other files that made life pretty rough for a little while. So, once we got a new hard drive, I immediately purchased a backup program so I could copy the entire hard drive, including the operating system, onto a back-up drive. So, if that drive ever fails again, I won't loose any thing.

There is a difference between back-up programs and disk copy programs. Back-up programs let you copy (and sometimes sync) individual files so you don't loose them. They tend to take up less resources on your computer, and are pretty easy to locate the copy if you need it. A disk copy (or "ghosting" a disk) program, copies the entire content of the drive onto a new one (and some programs will compress the files so they take up less room), including the operating system and drivers. So if your OS goes belly-up, or your hard drive drive crashes to a halt, EVERYTHING has been copied. Fortunately, this software does BOTH.

Head on over to Giveawayoftheday and pick up this software (it is 84 MB, so it might take a minute or two to download). Also, it is a ZIP file, (which should open up in explorer) and after you read the 'readme' file, then click the installer. It will install in your c:/program files/paragon folder. YOU WILL NEED TO FIND THAT FILE AND DOUBLE CLICK IT TO COMPLETE INSTALLATION. It will start to load, and then a window will come up saying "click to get free product key". Click on that and you will be directed to a page to register it, then they will email you the key. Complete the installation from there and you are set! (Really it is not as complicated as I am making it sound!)

Everyone needs a good backup program, and it's not very often that it's free! If you have any questions, you can read the comments section on their page, or leave a question in the comments and I will try to answer it for you. Also, if you download it, I would appreciate it if you could leave me a comment letting me know what you thought of it!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

$50 off $100 Old Navy Coupon Giveaway!

OK, I know that it's a bit of a shameless promotion, but hey, I'm trying to get more readers, and you, well, you want as many clothes as you can get for as little as possible. Well, Old Navy has had a promotion going on since March, where they hide high value coupons on their website, Old Navy Weekly (usually on Thursdays), and if you find one, you can get $50 or even $75 off a $100 purchase (check out Thrifty NW Mom for more details and hints on how to get the best coupons - she has a chat room where you can go and everyone helps search for the high coupons together!). So, I will have a quick giveaway for a $50 off $100 coupon, which can be used thru Thursday! Even better, they have an additional 50% off clearance at Old Navy thru Wednesday, so you could end up with some cheap clothes. Since this coupon is only good thru Thursday and the clearance sale ends tomorrow--this will be a super short giveaway--it will end at 9am PST Wednesday, July 29th.

Here's how to enter::

Required Entry::

1) Leave a comment on this post - let me know what kinds of things you (or your husbands) would be interested in hearing about on my blog; make sure to leave your email address if you do not have a blog link where I could contact you. I need to be able to email you the Old Navy coupon!

Extra entries (leave a separate comment for each entry)::

1) Become an email subscriber (go to right sidebar at the top and enter your email address to receive daily email updates from Thrifty NW Dad) or become an RSS subscriber HERE OR become a follower thru Blogger (click on the link on the right sidebar)

2) Put my blog on your bloglist

3) Tweet about this giveaway - follow @ThriftyNWDad and tweet about it - make sure to include a link to my blog (leave a link to your tweet) or your Twitter name in a comment.

Monday, July 27, 2009

4 GB micro SD Card for your phone $6.99;

A micro SD card is a simple and easy way to upgrade the storage capacity of your phone (MP3 player, or other small electronic device) on the cheap. You can store more music, pictures, documents, files, whatever you need. You can also use it as a thumb drive, as long as you have an adapter (it does not appear to come with one). has a good deal for a 4 GB card for only $6.99 with free shipping. The brand name is Easystore, which isn't exactly Kingston, but it seems to be getting good reviews on and Amazon. Keep in mind that this is a MicroSDHC card, with the HC meaning High Capacity. Not all devices are compatable with HC memory cards, so check yours (you can usually find out online) to see if it will work.

Amazon also has a great deal on a Sandisk 8GB card for $10.99 plus $4.99 shipping (plus tax in WA). Again, a good deal to increase your phone or media player memory, or to use for storing extra files from your computer.

Compaq laptop for $298 at Wal-mart!

Very quickly, as I'm running out to go to a training for work, I noticed Wal-Mart's ad in the Sunday paper, and they have a Compaq Presario CQ60-419WM laptop with 3GB of Memory for a mere $298! It only has a 160 GB hard Drive but it does come with Windows Vista (which can be upgraded to Windows 7 for free when it is released). The laptop will use a 2.10 GHz AMD Sempron SI-42 processor and Nvidia GeForce 8200M graphics. Quantities are limited, so call your local store before heading out. This would be a perfect light-use laptop for surfing the web or other general use applications. This is probably the best deal on a laptop (much better than most netbooks!) I've ever seen.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Sausage biscuit, hash browns, and a mocha . For $1 at McD's.

Monday morning you can get a free 8 oz hot (or 7 oz cold) mocha from 7am-7pm at participating McDonald's. This may not be new, but, if you combine it with the coupon for the free hash browns, then get something off the dollar menu (Sausage biscuit, sausage burrito or sausage McMuffin) you essentially get an entire breakfast for a buck. Be forewarned, however, that 8 oz is not much. In fact, some of my fellow teachers put more espresso than that into their mega drinks. But, hey, it's free! Also remember that while you can get the mocha from 7am-7pm, you can only get the hash browns during breakfast hours (usually until 10am)

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Thrifty NWDad's First (and last?) coupon experience

So my wife (ThriftyNWMom) wanted to go to Albertson's to use our double coupons and I thought it would be fun to get some free ice cream! So, I volunteered to make a run and see what I could get. Well, the experience turned out to be something that makes me understand why some people are put off by coupons. Don't get me wrong, I got a great deal, and got quite a few things for under $10 ($8.82 total actually), but the cashier's didn't help and worst of all, THEY WERE OUT OF ICE CREAM!!!! Argh!

So here's how it went down. I went into the store, and asked the clearly bored cashier at the customer service desk if there were any fliers remaining with the doublers. She started to hand me two, but then took one back. I asked her if I could have both and she gave me the "ugh, I guess" look, and promptly reminded me that they will only accept two coupons per transaction.

Now, knowing that my wife highly recommended this particular store because they were so friendly, I figured she was a rogue cashier, and that the others were there to actually be friendly. So for my first transaction, I got 8 bottles of the Kraft BBQ sauce, and two boxes of Honey nut Cheerios (This should have given me $5 off for the epic promo). The cashier (not quite as bored, but just as unfriendly) told me that she won't give me the doubler coupon because it would have equaled $2.00 off, and the price was $1.99. Argh! I asked about lowering the value of the coupon, increasing the cost of the Cheerios, all of which she said no. I asked if the manager could help, and when the manager finally came over (by now the line was starting to back up) she also said that she couldn't (or didn't want to) do anything. Sheesh people.

So instead, I got 10 bottles of BBQ, and then got Honeynut clusters with coupons and doublers, but the epic promo still wouldn't work. Then cashier had to look to make sure that Kraft was actually a part of the epic promo, because she wasn't sure. I think the poor lady behind me really had to go to the bathroom, because she was looking around uncomfortably, figitting with her keys and shifting her weight from side to side (kind of like my three year old when she does the potty dance . . .). Finally the cashier got it figured out and for a total of $5.88, I got the 10 bottles of BBQ, two bags of the Nut Clusters, plus I got $5 in catalina's (oh and our two free candy bars from M&M/Mars). Then I asked for rain checks for the ice cream. I don't think I've ever seen someone roll their eyes as dramatically as she did!

So then, making sure that the lady behind me didn't have an accident right there on the floor, I took my stuff to the car and came back in armed with my catalina's and two other doubler's. This time, I got four boxes of Cheerios (to make sure I could use those stinking coupons!) , two boxes of Pasta Salad mix (that had a $1.50 off 2 coupon), plus four boxes of Kraft Mac and cheese (because I LOVE mac and cheese!) for a total of 10 items (and I threw in two bags of marshmallows, just in case). Again, even with all of this, the epic promo didn't work. And, having the same cashier (I almost laughed when I saw her expression when she saw me again. It was like she just found out her puppy died or something) she just wanted me out of there, so she entered the promo manually, I gave her the coupons, and the catalina's and paid $2.94. Not too shabby for my first real coupon trip. But, after that experience, I think I'll let me wife handle it form now on ! :)

Friday, July 24, 2009

Chaos in Seattle tomorrow

Well, today's post is a little different. I was going to post about a nice home phone deal from Amazon, but when I went to order it for myself (we need a new home phone. Our current one can't be used when the microwave is in use. Weird.) it had already sold out. Bummer. In case they replenish the stock, here are the details:

Uniden TRU9485-3 3-Handset 5.8GHz Digital Telephone w/ Answering Machine (Refurb) $29.99 Free Shipping

5.8 Digital Expandable System
Digital Answering System with Handset Access
10 Handset Expandability (Maximum)
Caller ID/Call Waiting Deluxe† - To activate the Caller ID and/or VoiceMail features, you must subscribe through your local telephone company.
Handset Speakerphone - This feature gives you the freedom to use the handset as a speakerphone.
Base Duplex Speakerphone
Advanced Phonebook Features: - Store up to 100 Names, Store Up to 2 Numbers per Name, Alphabetical Search, Personalized Ringers, Transfer Single Listing or Entire Phonebook
New Message Waiting Indicator with Alert Tone Option
Intercom or Call Transfer Between Handsets
20 Ringer Options - 10 melodies + 10 tones
Room Monitoring
Ringer Off Option
Find Lost Handset / Paging Key
Headset Compatible - Allows for an optional headset to be connected for convenient hands-free operation.
2 Extra Caller ID Handsets and Chargers Included

This looks like a really nice deal, but they are gone for now. . . .

So instead, I wanted to let the local readers know about the perfect storm of traffic problems in Seattle tomorrow. First of all, The Seattle Sounders FC will be playing a match at Qwest Field starting at noon. Second, the Mariners have a game at Safeco at 1. Third, there will be preparations for the Seafair Tourchlight Parade and Run (it doesn't start until around 6, but my understanding is that they will be closing some streets downtown early and they are expecting around 300,000 people!). And of course, there is always construction. So, there you go. Don't say you weren't warned! (Just go to the Tacoma Rainiers game instead!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

4 in 1 Jacket $29.97 or Less!

One of my favorite outdoor gear retailers is called The Sportman's Guide. If you are at all familiar with them, it's probably because you've had their black-and-white catalogs laying around the coffee table, near the fireplace to be used to start the evening's fire, or more likely, in a little basket next to the john. Well, they have always been a reputable, inexpensive retailer, but remained small, because, well, they're catalogs were about as colorful and interesting as toilet paper.

Until the internet came along, that is. Oh don't worry, they still publish that catalog, but now, everything is also online, and get this . . . .their pictures are in color!! So, they are still cheap, but you have a much better idea of what you are getting. Now, with the intro out of the way, here is a great deal I found early this morning: A 4-in-1 Waterproof Jacket with Zip-off sleeves For $29.97. The original list price was $100, making this 70% off. It is on clearance, and so only comes in three colors: Clover (AKA muted forest green), Moonlight (a nice blue that isn't too bright), and Khaki (self explanatory).

Here is the info from the main page:

From mild to wild...this Jacket handles it all! A Jacket for all seasons, you can use it 4 ways. 1. External Waterproof Shell for rain protection. 2. Add the Internal Vest for lightweight warmth. 3. Zip off the sleeves for high mobility and element protection. 4. Wear Shell, Insulating Vest and Sleeves together for maximum extreme weather comfort. Get yours for LESS!

Solve any temp.:

  • Waterproof, 100% ripstop nylon shell with waterproof backing
  • 100% polyester mesh lining
  • Zip-out 100% polyester vest lining with inset pocket
  • Zip-off 2-Pc. hood with elastic cord and toggle lock
  • Stand-up collar
  • Full zipper front with hook-and-loop closure storm flap
  • Left-handed zipper
  • Zip-off sleeves
  • Elastic / hook-and-loop cuffs keep out wind and debris
  • Handwarmer pockets with taped zipper
  • Napoleon inset pocket with taped zipper
  • Removable cell phone pocket.
  • Machine wash / tumble dry. Imported.

It looks like shipping will be about $8.50, which seems a little high, but you're still getting a really good deal. You may see two prices listed, one for members (10% less), and one for non-members. If you buy outdoor gear on a semi-regular basis, I would suggest getting their membership ($29.99), and let me explain why.

First, you get free shipping for your current order ($8.50). Second, you get two $10 off certificates for your next two purchases (no minimum purchase), so right there you just paid for your membership. They are running a special right now where they are doubling your discount as well. So, for example,the jacket is $30, members get it for $27 (10% off). You would get another 10% off as well ($24). So, if you pay the $30 for the membership, you would get this:

$8.50 shipping
$20 gift certificates
$6.00 off the jacket
Total Savings: $34.50

So, yes, it puts you back $30, but if you think you might ever buy a hunting/fishing/camping/working/ hiking item in the next year, it's worth it.

You also get access to sales and bargains that are not available to the general public. Finally, you get 10% off everything you buy from them for the next 364 days. So it can easily pay for itself a couple times over.

As always, if you think this is a good deal and you decide to get it, let me know in the comments below!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Wireless Mouse $4.99 NEW!

A nice special from, an iMicro wireless mouse for your laptop or desktop. What's the big deal you say? #1, it reduces the number of cords on the back of your computer. If your computer desk is like ours, there are a ridiculous number of wires, cords, etc. back there, and even one less cord helps. #2, I hate it when the mouse doesn't quite reach as far as I need it to go (or is so tangled in the other cords that it reduces the effective length of the USB cord). So, here is a great solution!

There is one major drawback of a wireless mouse, that is that they use batteries. If your batteries die, your mouse won't work until you replace them.

Shipping looks to be about $3.50

So there you go, this is a good deal if you were thinking "Man, it would be nice if this stinking mouse didn't have a cord!". (Well, it's still a good deal, even if you weren't!)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

8 GB Flash Drive $14.99 w/free ship has a Crucial 8 GB flash drive for only 14.99 with free shipping (plus tax in CA, NJ, PR, TN). By now, everyone knows the importance of having a flash drive not only for storing documents, but in the ever increasing world of portable applications, the bigger, the better. Personally, I use an 8 GB (I wish I had gotten it this cheap) for backing up all my lesson plans, presentations, and handouts that I use for my classes.

Incidentally, this is also at for the same price, but there is shipping added if you don't purchase over $25 of items (you could purchase two and then get the free shipping, if you needed two), but tax will be added in Washington.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Tacoma Rainiers AMAZING Deal

OK, so it's the heart of baseball season here in the Pacific Northwest, but, as we all know, taking a family to see a Mariner's game, although a ton of fun, not exactly suitable for the budget-conscious. So, what's a guy to do? He wants to see a game, bring the wife & kids along, let them have some fun, eat some pizza, but doesn't want to deal with $20 parking in Seattle, $25 tickets, $8 hot dogs, etc.

So instead, how does this sound?

4 tickets
4 authentic ball caps
4 slices of pizza
2 Little Caesars Pizzas for after the game
2 crazy breads for after the game
AND . . . . . .
2 youth tickets for the Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium
2 Tickets to NW Trek Wildlife Park

ALL FOR $44(retail value $125)!!

What's the catch you ask? Well, it's not the Seattle Mariner's, but the Tacoma Rainier's, the AAA affiliate of the Mariner's and it's only available on Saturday, July 25th, Saturday, August 15th, and Saturday September 5th.

Now, I've been to a few Rainier's games and I LOVE them. Much smaller crowds, much closer views of the field, and often more interesting games. And it is so easy to bring the kids. There are places for them to run around, check out the stadium, buy souveniers, etc. Don't get me wrong, if this was a Mariner's deal, I would be in heaven. But, it is a great deal, even if it is the minor leagues.

Go here to see all the details. You can order tickets online here, call to order tickets by calling 253-752-7707, or email them at

* Must be picked up at a Little Caesar's location after the game

My Views From the Cheap Seats

I like the cheap seats. First of all, well, they're CHEAP! Second, that irritating guy sitting behind you four rows from the top of the center field bleachers (who is naturally yelling at the batter, and yelling so loud that I think the batter CAN hear him), well he isn't so irritating, when you know that you only paid $7 (or less) for those seats. Plus, you can get up and move around and not feel guilty that you just left your $50 seat to go to the bathroom.

Okay, fine, so why am I writing a blog about it then? You see, I am a teacher by day and sports/electronics/science/automotive/outdoor recreation fan by night. It may be a news flash for ya, but teachers don't exactly bring in a lot of dough. And my wife, bless her heart, stays at home with our two little girls (3 and 9 months) trying her best to save money any way she can. She stared her own blog, Thrifty NW Mom, and eventually convinced me to do a blog myself after she got tired of me telling her about the deals I came across that she really didn't have much interest in. Yes, her audience has a craving for special deals, but I'm pretty sure that most of them don't really care about the sweet Tom Tom deal I came across, or about the special that the Seattle Mariners had for Father's Day (even though she did post that one!).

So, that is what I am going to do here. I will search around for good deals that appeal to my interests; namely electronics, software, and anything sports related (including outdoor sports) and I will post them for you to read. I really like free things, so I will post those when ever I can.

Well, I hope you enjoy the blog, and please feel free to add in your own suggestions anywhere in the comments!