Lost (without Lost for 8 months!)

I remember the days when I was oblivious to Lost. When I was pregnant with Caroline, I’d sit in the teacher’s lounge at lunch while the other teachers discussed the Losties. I was especially interested in Claire, since we were both pregnant, and I remember hearing talk of her disappearance during season one. I listened, but I was ambivalent. I had never seen the show. Months later, after Caroline was born, my friend Ms. W IM’d me one morning asking if I watched Lost. I think she wanted to chat about the previous episode, but I had never seen the show.

Since I’d heard some of the hype, I got Lost’s Season One through Netflix when Caroline was an infant. Those were the days when my stay-at-home-mom job involved sitting on the couch nursing the baby while watching seasons of shows on Netflix. My girl nursed a lot, so I watched a lot of shows. I got so into Lost that I couldn’t wait for Season Two to come out on DVD, but the Season was already halfway through its broadcasts. I paid 99 cents an episode to download them from iTunes and got caught up so that I could get caught up and pick up on Season Two. And I’ve watched all of Season Three.

Every girl has her Lost guy. I discussed this with some of John’s cousins recently and was surprised that not everyone liked the same guys I did. I thought everyone would be choosing between Jack and Sawyer, just as Kate was, but these girls all had different favorites — and those favorites were reflected in our mates, interestingly.

I’m not going to go into my theories here, since theories abound on the blogs and message boards. I’m not going to rehash all the things that didn’t make sense in last night’s episode. I am just going to confess that I am still a Sawyer girl. I don’t blame him one bit for killing ol’ Friendly. (And I’m thrilled that he whacked the old man Sawyer!)

WFMW: Wish list for kids

Since my daughter’s second birthday is coming up, gift ideas for her have been on my mind. I have always used Amazon’s wish list for myself since my dad likes specific gift ideas (and I like giving specific gift ideas). 🙂 I started a wish list for Caroline, too, but I’ve found another option that is working much better. I set up an amazon a-store, or affiliate store, for her. This is free and easy to do. As I think of toys or books or things I’d like to get for her, I add them to this store. It keeps me focused on things I truly want for her and helps me not to buy junk. The real benefit, though, is price monitoring. I check in on her store every few days. The a-store lists the lowest available price from all of Amazon’s vendors, so I can easily see when an item goes on sale. For example, I had the Melissa & Doug Art Easel on her list. It retails for about $60. One week it showed up for $29.99 with FREE SHIPPING! Too great of a bargain to pass up for an item I knew she’d enjoy. I have a wooden toy kitchen on her list now that I’m monitoring. It will be her Christmas present, but if the price is right, I can find a place to store it until December.

For more Works for Me Wednesday tips, visit Rocks in My Dryer.

Book Review — Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

I’m going to be rereading Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children soon because years ago, I read it with the same reluctance with which I started Kite Runner, only to be blown away by how much I enjoyed the novel. Midnight’s Children is now one of my favorite books (and it’s time for a reread.) Suprisingly, I enjoyed Kite Runner much more than I expected I would. I gave it a try since it had such great reviews, and I’m so glad I did.

Kite Runner is not going to join the ranks of my favorite five, but it was a riveting tale. It was heartbreaking — both the personal interactions of friend-t0-friend and father-to-son and the global interactions — nation-to-nation and sect-to-sect. The narrator, a coward turned not-quite-a-hero, mistreats his best friend / milk brother / servant throughout their childhoods, abandoning him at an especially vulnerable moment and is haunted by the guilt even after he and his family leave Russian-ruled Afghanistan for America.

With the almost non-existent knowlege I have of Afgani history, I have been trying to reconcile if the characters could be microcosms for the larger groups in Afganistan’s experiences. Aseef would obviously be the Taliban. Hasaan is the Hazara, or maybe the Afganis in general. I can’t figure out if Baba would be the Russians. If so, does that make Amir America — the privileged son who uses his servant-friend-brother when he needs him and abandons him when convenient only to live with the guilt. Not to mention that Amir gets the crap beat out of him by Aseef and is saved by an underdog.

WFMW: Easy Money

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I love online shopping — maybe even a bit more than I love saving money — but it’s a close call. I’ve always searched for coupon codes for free shipping or discounts before I’d buy online, but often I couldn’t find any savings.

Until I discovered ebates! Ebates is a shopping portal, meaning you start at their site and search by item or by vendor, and then enter the vendor’s site to make your purchase. It is a free service, but when you click through to the certain vendors, a window pops up listing the discount codes for that vendor. For example, I bought some new bras from Target the other day and got a coupon code for free shipping. When I bought an extra carseat recently, I got a code for $15 off and free shipping.

Savings are great, but here is the BEST part about ebates. MONEY BACK! For each purchase, you get a percentage back, and you can elect to receive a check or have it deposited into your paypal account. So far, I’m made $27.25 doing nothing but shopping for things I was going to buy anyway.

If you sign up through my referral link, you’ll get a $5 sign-up bonus when you make your first purchase through their link. (I’ll get $5, too, which is darn nice!)

HAPPY SHOPPING AND SAVING!

For more Works for Me Wednesday tips, visit Rocks in My Dryer.