15 March 2017

Beware the #IdesofMarch It Comes for Thee Also Maybe. #WeatherGeek + #SYWR Score #Veggetti #Zoodles #AsSeenOnTV

Julius Caesar was betrayed and murdered on the 15th of March (the 15th day of the month is known as the "Ides" in the Roman era) and as a result, this day has henceforth been synonymous with misfortune. Beware the Ides of March!

Many have no doubt heard this warning, but might also be unaware from whence it comes. Because one dude bought the farm on this date eons ago, the rest of us are cautioned to tread carefully today. Yeah, right. Sorry, Caesar, perhaps you should have picked better friends or how about not be a "Caesar"? Dictators often fair poorly. Just saying.

Personally, I'm good with March 15th. In fact, any "Ides" is fine by me. Speaking of which, today is bear hibernation cold --- as was yesterday, and tomorrow is supposed to be more of the same before a warming trend kicks in on Friday afternoon --- but, considering the frigid and snowy weather conditions in the Northeast right now, we got off lightly down here.

The potential for blizzards was a major reason why I chose not to attend university in the Northeast. I do not love the cold. (Sorry, Ivies. If only, you would've moved to California. Oh, wait...) So pup and I are hunkered down again today. Though pup keeps trying to take meandering strolls outdoors --- just because she has a built-in fur coat!

On the house front, my Kick-A-Kitchen is continuing to develop nicely. As it was cold, wet and windy yesterday, after I finished work, I spent part of the afternoon browsing online looking for deals since I couldn't very well go work outside. The afternoon was not wasted. I scored an As Seen On TV: Veggetti Pro Spiral Vegetable Cutter [MSRP $32.98] for only $3.77 OOP.

Having researched "vegetable spiralizers" over the last year or so --- the gadget is was on my Future Shopping List, after all --- I knew that the Veggetti Pro Spiral Vegetable Cutter is well rated (earning approximately 4.5 out of 5 stars on both Amazon and Kmart), especially when compared to the handheld regular Veggetti Spiral Vegetable Cutter (which merely earns approximately 3.5 out of 5 stars on both Amazon and Kmart).

Having done SYWR product catalog searches for "vegetable spiralizers" and "vegetable slicers," I also knew that both the handheld regular version and the pro version of the Veggetti Spiral Vegetable Cutter were carried by either Sears or Kmart, so I realized there was a good possibility that I would eventually happen upon a deal for one --- preferably the pro version.

The Back Story: Sadly, I no longer enjoy pasta. This has been a gradual, yet fairly recent, seemingly unexplainable change in palate, as I absolutely loved pasta when I was a kid. (Oddly enough, however, I did hate macaroni & cheese as a child, which I could not have explained to myself if I had been asked to do so, because separately I loved pasta and I loved (still love) cheese. WTF? But perhaps, this strangeness was a precursor to my current food preferences.) Over the last several years, I've progressed from hating Mac & Cheese, to hating all "big noodle" pasta --- I could tolerate Angel Hair pasta, for a time --- to disliking pasta, period. I like the "idea of noodles" --- just not the taste or consistency of pasta, apparently.

But I, of course, love veggies. (I'm vegetarian.) As such, I decided that what I craved was a noodle-like alternative to pasta. Enter "zoodles" --- or in this case, the ability to turn vegetables, like zucchini [zucchini noodles = zoodles], and fruits into noodle form. It's all the rage! I figured I could continue to enjoy "noodles" without my increasing distaste for water cooked dough (pasta) making me gag. Thus, I've been wanting a vegetable spiralizer or spiral cutter, the kitchen gadget which turns veggies and fruits into noodles, for a minute.

How'd I get this great low price? (Less than 1/8 of the MSRP.) Check the step-by-step breakdown:

1. I started at Sears. The regular price of a Veggetti Pro Spiral Vegetable Cutter on the sears.com website is only $19.99 (versus $24.99 + $7.99 p&h, which is the amount I would have paid by ordering one directly from the manufacturer's website, veggettipro.com). It pays to shop around and compare prices.

2. Sears was having a Friends & Family Sale on Sunday in stores (but the sale continued through Tuesday online) which discounted most small appliances by 10%. Thus, Sears regular price of $19.99 instantly dropped to $16.99 on sale.

3. Next, I used a coupon. I'd previously loaded a "Member Exclusive" coupon to my Sears account which offered "15% Off Any Item in the Home Department." With the coupon, the $16.99 price dropped to $14.44.

4. Then, I redeemed my rewards. I had rewards points in my account, accumulated from small sweepstakes wins over the last two weeks. This sweeps loot totalled $10.92, which brought the pre-tax item price down to $3.52 when deducted. (I could've opted to find an item that was $10.92 or less and in turn get said item totally free with my rewards points balance, of course. For instance, the handheld Veggetti Spiral Vegetable Cutter is only $9.99 at Kmart, so I could have bought it and paid zero out-of-pocket. However, being able to score the very well rated pro version instead is a big win on a useful tool I actually wanted.)

5. Finally, the tax was 25-cents. Making the total due $3.77. I selected Free Store Pickup as the order didn't meet the recently increased $30 threshold in order to qualify for SYWMax Free Shipping.

So while it will take a trip to the local Sears store to get my grubby hands on the Veggetti Pro Spiral Vegetable Cutter, I'll have spent less than 1/8 the cost of purchasing it online directly from the manufacturer, which makes this a great deal in my boo7k, in spite of having to pick it up at the store.

BONUS: I paid the OOP cost with my "free" money stash (discretionary income earned from taking random surveys online). Not a bad afternoon. Winning! This is like an early birthday gift to myself. Yay! I get to enjoy "pasta", again.

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