Cheap, shiny pucker and parts

Let’s get something out in the open, just at the start. I like expensive things. I love expensive food and wine, and I enjoy an expensive evening out. However, considering the state of the economy, we can’t always do what we would  like. It’s a damned good thing I enjoy looking for a bargain, eating gourmet on the cheap, and love a good, cheap dive bar, too. Although I’d love to sit at a rooftop bar in Manhattan, sipping a gorgeous $18 drink, I can’t, so Yeungling, it is!

I’m a partially employed broadcaster since I returned to my original career less than a year ago. It means times are tough and I can’t always make it out one night a week. Sometimes it’s one night every two weeks. Often, it’s a beer at home chatting to friends online, or catching up on my tv shows.

Whether or not you are on a tight (ultra-tight) or expansive budget, I hope you find some of the stuff I come up with interesting enough to try, or at least amusing, as I try to have an evening out on $20 in the city. Hey, don’t judge! One of my best friends has been living on a ratty shoestring budget and managing to go out most nights, in Manhattan, for years. He’ll join me occasionally on my blogging, podcasts, and hopefully (after finding a cheap video camera) videos, too!

As far as food goes, I am essentially vegetarian. I added seafood to my diet not very long ago, but it’s not a regular part of my meal plan. It also costs more than my usual groceries, so I don’t often spend the extra, as I rarely think about it. Since most of you do like fish and meat, I will do my best to make the meals I present, both cooked at home or eaten out, to appeal to as many as possible. Still, I can’t say no to really yummy, cheap falafel.

I’ll start today with something easy, and girly. Sorry, guys, there will be wires and parts in a bit.

When I lived in Dallas, I got addicted to this store. At the time, like many things, you could only shop in the store, but since then they’ve expanded, opened stores here in New Jersey, and allow you to order online. I can spend a very long time in this store, looking at stuff from lovely lead crystal to Nars makeup, to 500 thread count imported cotton sheets.  I still have a set of glass plates I bought years ago, as well as towels that are still soft, beautiful and absorbent. (Egyptian cotton) The towels cost me something like $5 each. Crazy.

Today, I’m looking at some Laura Mercier lip gloss for $8!

Tuesday Morning

This makes the girly girl inside of me all clapping hands and hopping happy.  Seriously, ladies, $22 lip gloss for $8 should make you want to embarrass yourself in private a little, too. I will have cheap and shiny lips as soon as I have a moment.

Now for the men, and other mechanically inclined women who wear latex gloves so as not to ruin the self-done manicure, I present cheap car parts! Not just cheap, but new, OEM, and shiny! Grab your socket set and alan wrenches, guys, because as a driver of an older Mercedes-Benz, I know parts are expensive.  I recently had to replace a coil pack and the wires on Von Fitz, hereafter referred to as Fitzy, my 1997 E320, and as I refuse to buy after-market parts, a OEM coil pack was looking at me from a $165-for-the-part pedestal, never mind the repair costs! It was going to cost $550 at a good, reputable shop. Being broker’n a stepped-on eggshell, as usual, that wasn’t an option. I pulled out the tools that I begged my father for Christmas so many years ago, logged into www.benzworld.org , got a few instructions and a link to a great OEM parts shop online: AutoHausAZ

Gentlemen, and ladies, you will notice the $65 or so dollar price tag on that sucker? I ordered a new set of wires, which come with the connectors, too.

AutoHausAZ Wires

Each connector is at least $25 from the dealership, (remember, I won’t get after market parts. That is a whole ‘nother conversation) and the 3 are in the set, so right there I got the wires free, if you think about it. A $550 job, which would have gone up because of the wires and plugs cost me $120 and about, wait for it, 30 minutes, maybe 40, because it was cold and my hands were stiff. If you need parts, look here because the prices are very good. They don’t carry absolutely everything, but I saved over $400, most likely $500-$600, because a shop won’t admit a job took all of 30 minutes to do, unless you have a great relationship with them.

Now that I have shared my yummy, shiny cheapness with you, I am going to have a glass of the wine that I found on sale for $8 at Buy Rite Wines.

Where else can you find a blog that tells you where to buy lip gloss and auto parts?

Cheap Love,

Gloria

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