DIY Girlfriends Spa Day – One Fabulous Gift!

Holy Cow! Christmas is just a few days away. How the heck did it get here so darn fast? And you still haven’t found that perfect gift for your best gal pals!

What’s a Frugalista to do? I’ve got you covered, Cupcake. . . Give your friends a Girlfriends Spa Day. . .  I know, I know. You’re thinking,  “Has the Famous Frugalista lost her freakin’ mind? That’s way out of my price range.”

Stop stressing and take a deep breath! My Spa Day Plan is simple, fun, and best of all, you can put it together in a jiffy on a bargain basement budget. Bet I’ve got your attention now. . .

All you need are some of my DIY spa recipes, a cute coupon you make yourself, and an afternoon set aside just for you and your friends. After all the hustle and bustle and stress of the holidays, a gift of relaxation and pampering . . . What’s not to love?

Fancy spas specialize in pampering their guests and that’s just what you’re going to do. To set the stage for your Spa Day, brew up some delicious herbal tea and whip up a platter of hors d’oeuvres. Or pour glasses of sparkling cider or wine or champagne if you’re in the mood to splurge.  (Remember, best prices on champagne are usually just before New Year’s Eve.) How about some chocolate-dipped strawberries? Or rich, decadent cookies to go with your beverage of choice?

Being the smart cookie that you are, you’re not only going to put a fabulous Spa Day together without emptying your wallet, you’re going make it easy on yourself too. After all, you want to enjoy the day right along with your gal pals.

Don’t worry about gathering up a bunch of robes and slippers. No need. Just ask your friends bring their own robes along. Trust me, they won’t mind a bit! Then all you have to do is mix up my super-simple spa recipes, put out some fluffy towels, a little food and drink —  and you’re ready to R-E-L-A-X.

Want to make it even more spa-like? Put some relaxing background music in the CD player, light a few candles, and serve the food and drinks on your best dishes. That’s right!

NO paper plates and stryofoam cups allowed, Pumpkin! Make it an elegant and oh so special event. You may be saving money, but there’s no reason to look cheap, so don’t even think about going there.

Here are three super-easy facial recipes you can make up in minutes. And Darlin’, there’s not a single harmful chemical in them either. Who needs all those added pesticides, preservatives, and toxins?

Yogurt, Oatmeal, and Honey Mask

In a small bowl, mix together 1 tablespoon plain yogurt (room temperature) with 1 tablespoon finely ground oatmeal (toss it in the blender or food processor if you’ve got one) and a teaspoon of honey. Blend well. This recipe is for one facial mask, but it’s easy to make up as many as you need. And you don’t need a degree in calculus to figure it out.

Apply the mask to your face and leave it on for 10-15 minutes. Use warm water and a washcloth to rinse it off.

Oily Skin Citrus Facial

Blend 1 teaspoon orange juice or lemon juice with 2 teaspoons honey and half a cup of plain yogurt, room temperature. Slather the mixture on and let it dry. Rinse off with warm water.

Dry Skin Avocado and Honey Facial

Mash half a ripe avocado in a small bowl. Add 1/4 cup honey and mix well. Smooth on to your skin and leave the mask on for 10 minutes. Use a wash cloth and cool water to remove.

Need a moisturizer? Smooth on a dab of plain olive oil. Works for all skin types. Now that your face is looking great, it’s time for a luxurious hand, foot, and leg treatment:

 Honey, Oatmeal, and Aloe Vera Scrub

Most of the ingredients for this recipe come right from your kitchen cabinet. For each scrub, you’ll need:

1 tablespoon honey

2 tablespoons brown sugar

2 tablespoons aloe vera gel

2 tablespoons oatmeal (To get the right consistency, grind the oatmeal in a food processor or blender. It should be kind of like sand.)

1 teaspoon olive oil

1 teaspoon lemon juice.

Mix it all up until it looks like a paste. Then, just splash some warm water on your feet, legs, and hands and massage the paste on using circular movements. Rinse off with warm water, towel dry, and apply a bit of olive oil to your skin.

Oooooh, doesn’t your skin feel amazing? Did I just hear a great big “Aaaahhh?”

Now it’s time to pour the drinks, munch on those goodies, and enjoy a gab-fest and some giggles with your girlfriends. And Sweet Pea, your Spa Day will be talked about for weeks to come as the best gift ever! So what are you waiting for? Get busy and make up some coupons for Christmas!

Want to add even spa treatments to your line up? Check out these articles.

© The Famous Frugalista 2011

Famous Frugalista Find of the Week!

You know me, as The Famous Frugalista I’m always on the lookout for a great deal to share with you. I’m all about helping you save money on the things you need. And this week, I’ve found a real goodie for you. In fact, it’s more like a trainload of goodies! A true Famous Frugalista Find of the Week! 

Here’s just a teensy sample of super-duper savings available this week in four different cities:

• Want to work off some weight and have a little fun? Try 5 Jazzercise classes for 20 bucks. That’s half price, Cupcake!

• Car repairs are mega-expensive, you know that. $90 to spend on auto repairs for just $40 sounds pretty good to me. In fact, I could have used this deal last week.

• Do you dream of being on the PGA tour, complete with your own personal caddy and a throng of adoring fans clamoring for your autograph? Bring out your inner golf pro with 18 holes of golf and cart rental for two people – $31 (Unfortunately, no adoring fans included.)

• Are you a hockey  fan? How does a  premium or select c ircle ticket to a professional hockey game sound for just $13?

• Maybe you want to give your little darlin’ dance lessons but it’s just not in the budget. Here’s a deal for 52% off — weekly dance lessons for 2 months for $60. Can’t promise she’ll be a prima ballerina in a couple of months, but she should be more graceful. (Hey, wonder if I can get in on those lessons? I’ve been told I have two left feet.)

• Got an old photo of great uncle Elmer that desperately needs restoration? You can get a photo restored, plus a free 8 x 10 print made of it for 6 bucks. You read that right. Regular price is $50.

  And I just scooped up a Home Murder Mystery Party for 15-20 people for just $25. Yep, that’s all. Half price. Comes with the whole mystery party laid out for me, including costume ideas, tips for food, music, decorations, even has the invitations ready to print out. Makes is soooo easy. No stressing about what to do, so I get to enjoy the party too. Hmmm. . . Now all I have to do is decide whether I want to be Iguana Trump, Mimi Martini, or Lucy Legs. As long I as can wear my purple feather boa, it’s all good. Zowie!

So, the question is “Famous Frugalista, where can I get in on these sensational savings?” And the answer is . . . (drum roll please. . .), . . . just sign up at LivingSocial.com for Daily Deal alerts.

It’s simple. You just plug in your email address and the cities where you want to find the deals.  Full disclosure here — if you don’t live in a pretty good-sized place, your town won’t be listed. You’ll have to pick a city that’s near you. (I signed up for four different cities, two nearby and two where I want to vacation one of these days.)

Here’s how it works.  Every day you get an email with at least one deeply discounted deal for a local business. The deals have a time limit attached — some are open for a few days, some much longer. There’s no spamming and Living Social guarantees to make it right if you’re not “jumping for joy” with your deal. A huge discount, no spam, and a guarantee. Don’t cha just love it?

When you buy, you get a link to your voucher the next day. You can give deals as gifts which is pretty nifty, especially if you forgot someone’s birthday or (gulp!) your anniversary. I know you’d never, ever do that — but just in case, it’s good to know about.

Maybe you’re thinking, “This deal’s pretty good, but it would be a whole lot better if I could get it for nothing.” (Spoken like a true Frugalista!) If you want your particular deal for free, then you can share a link with your friends. If three of ’em buy the same deal, yours doesn’t cost you a thing. Take that to the bank, Baby!

OK, Cupcake, get yourself signed up today and start saving some serious money.

And just so you know, I’m not getting paid to endorse this site or sing their praises. I just like the deals and I think you will too.

© The Famous Frugalista 2011

Fabulous Freebies at a National Park Near You!

Brrrr!! The nights are getting cooler, the trees are putting on a gorgeous display of color and now’s a great time to get a REAL DEAL at more than 100 National Parks that usually charge $20-25 to get in. Woo Hoo!

There’s a park within a few hours drive from where nearly all of us live, so gas up the family chariot and take a mini-vacation with your family. Spend some time in the Great Outdoors. Get that city smog out of your lungs (hack! cough! wheeze!) and breathe in some fresh, clean air.

Put on your Bucky Beaver Ground Grabbers (that’s tennis shoes, Darlin’) and take a hike. Not into hiking? OK, let’s just call it a stroll then. I’ve already got a feather boa picked out to match my hiking boots and I’m ready to go . . . uh . . . I mean, stroll.

Get up close and personal with Mother Nature. Pack up some peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and make some memories with your kids or your sweetie.  And guess what, Cupcake? It’s F-R-E-E!

Right about now you’re probably thinking, “What’s the catch? It usually costs at least $20.00 a carload to get in to any National Park, so how come you’re talking freebie here?”

Here’s the secret. . . Every year there are no-entrance fee days.. Even a couple of weekends. And one entire week in April. Free. No charge. Absolutely nada. Sweet!

You’ve got one shot left this year — November 11-13. That’s right, Veteran’s Day weekend. And it’s comin’ up soon, so mark your calendar. Hey, call it an “Expedition” and get the whole dang family involved in planning it. What’s not to love?

Here are the fee-free dates for 2012. There are 17 in all:

• January 14-16 (Martin Luther King Jr. weekend)

• April 21-29 (National Park Week)

• June 9 (Get Outdoors Day)

• September 29 (National Public Lands Day)

• November 10 – 12 (Veterans Day weekend)

There’s also something called The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass Series. That’s a mouthful! Here’s the deal with that. It gets you into 2,000 + federal recreation sites and you won’t have to take out a loan or hock the family silver to make it happen.

The pass is free if you have a permanent disability. For people 62 and over, it’s a mere $10 for a lifetime pass. And you thought getting older was just about gray hair! HA! Getting older does have some benefits so take advantage of ’em, Baby Doll.

You don’t fit either one? No problemo. An annual pass is $80 and anyone qualifies. Yeah, I know $80 sounds like a lot to lay out all at once. But think of it this way — if you use it just 6 times a year, that’s less than 15 smackers for a whole day of fun. And there are tons of freebies thrown in too. Here’s just a sample of goodies you don’t have to shell out a dime to enjoy:  ranger-led fall foliage tours, Junior Ranger activity books and programs, history walks like the Going Bunkers tour at Ft. Hancock, or spend an afternoon fossil hunting. Every park offers something different but there are free events and activities at each one. Such a deal! Now that’s saving money, Frugalista-style.

Before you go, check out How to See National Parks Like a Pro.