Why does Target want my social security number to help me save 5%?

target logo

So I finally got a new rim and tire for my bicycle so I can start riding my bike again, but I didn’t get a tube, so we went to Target.  The new tubes were only $4.99 each and I bought 2.  At the check stand, the checker asked me if I was saving 5% with them and I said no and she asked me if I wanted to apply, it’s free, so I said eh, why not.  Naturally she had to void everything and start all over.  She asked for my ID and she asked me to tap something on the screen that you pay with a credit card on, then she asked me to type my social security number.  RED FLAG!  No, nope, nuh uh, no way, forget it, not gonna happen Baby Jane Hudson.

Why does Target need my social security number to help me save 5%?  It makes absolutely no sense.  I can see if I were applying for a credit card or if I were applying for a job, but she said it’s a rewards card, not a credit card.

She had to cancel it all out again and start over.  I paid for the 2 tubes and a bottle of soda and we left, grumbling about it all the way to the door and out to the car lol.

I just don’t understand why Target needs my social security number for that.  I had a rewards card with Albertson’s and all they asked me for was my home address, phone number and email address.  No problem.  I don’t mind giving out that information, but when it comes to my social security number I become suspicious.  Where is my tin foil hat?

I love Target, I really do.  I was upset when I couldn’t shop there because they had donated money to an anti-gay politician and was thrilled beyond belief when I could shop there again.  I was thrilled when they started carrying LGBT t-shirts and had a gay wedding registry.  I have always loved Target since I was 16, but this is just going too far.

So no Target, you can’t have my social security number to help me save a measly 5% on my future purchases.  Perhaps someone can explain to me why they need that.  I would love an explanation.

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Michelina’s are more affordable than Weight Watchers

michelinas zap ems

I have lost a total of 70lbs over the last 6 months with Weight Watchers Smart Ones frozen dinners and Noom.  Money is tight and I can no longer afford the luxury of paying $2 for the WW meals, so instead I had to do some research and find some other cheaper alternative with the same calories, fat and sodium as the Weight Watchers.

My partner of 19 years told me that we should buy the Michelina’s because they were half the price, but I insisted on the Weight Watchers for several reasons.  The first reason is because the Weight Watchers has the name Weight Watchers.  It’s psychological.  If you see it is a product for losing weight, you put it in your mind that if you ate that or Lean Cuisine that you are doing good.  Another reason was because they weighed more than the Michelina’s, so naturally you want more food, even if it was only 1-2oz difference.  My final reason is that the Weight Watchers show up as green in the Noom app while the Michelina’s show up as yellow.  Although, the pizza snacks show up as red.

So since times are tough and we don’t have the luxury anymore, I decided to start buying the Michelina’s.  They are $1.49 at Albertson’s, but they are currently on sale for 10 for $10.  I could be paying .97 cents at Food Maxx, but what’s 3 cents?  I also have coupons for $1 off 5, so if I use 2 coupons then I am really getting 10 for $8.  Not bad.  Although, I printed the coupons and went to the store without them.  Ooops.

michelinas lean gourmet I wrote a post about how the Weight Watchers are better than the Michelina’s Lean Gourmet which I still stand by.  The reason I don’t like the Lean Gourmet is because the sodium is really high and the calories aren’t that much lower than the Zap ‘ems.  They have more flavors in the Lean Gourmet too like the meat and potatoes, which is what I miss from the Weight Watchers.  The Lean Gourmet meals are good, but I have a huge issue with the sodium content.  The Lean Gourmet also show up as yellow in the Noom app, so they aren’t any better than the Zap ‘ems in that regard.

Not all of the Zap ‘ems have vegetables in them so what I’ll do is I will buy some frozen vegetables and when I open the Zap ‘ems, I will pour 1 cup worth on the top and then microwave it for double the amount of time suggested to make sure the frozen vegetables will have time to cook.  My favorite is spinach.  I’ve added broccoli and brussel sprouts too.  I would like to also buy some carrots and put those in there.  It just makes it that much more healthier in my mind and it gives me more food.

I don’t have that much more weight to lose to get down to my goal weight of 170lbs.  Last night I weighed myself at 192.8lbs, but today it went back up to 195 for some odd reason.  Last week on my weigh in day I was 193.6 so I would love to be 191 or 192 tomorrow, but we will see how it goes.  I just hope the switch from Weight Watchers to Michelina’s hasn’t made much of a difference, but I will find out tomorrow.

I am trying to buy a bicycle so I can exercise to help me lose weight, but the only way I can is if people help me out by buying a keychain, my hemp choker or bracelet or some earrings on my Etsy store.  You can use the coupon code NODOMA for 25% off.  It would really help me.  The keychains are cheap at $2 and the earrings are also cheap (inexpensive, not cheap) at $5.  It’s only a couple bucks, and they literally take hours to make each and I’m not asking for much for them.

Anyway, thanks for reading.

Hot patch for my back

salonpas hot

I have really bad back pain that gets worse and worse everyday.  I had an MRI on my shoulder a few years ago and they did a full scan of my back and found that I have degenerative disc disease in my lower spine, and I did have a lot of pain in my lower spine, sometimes when I bent over my back would lock up.  I knew the pain was there, but I was at that doctor visit for my shoulder.  Anyway, since that MRI, the pain has gone up my spine.  Right now the pain that I feel the most is near the top of the middle of my back, but not all the way to the top, yet.

So what I’ve been doing besides using the shiatsu massager and my desk chair which has vibrating massage is I will lean against an ice pack.  That really helps, trust me, but I have been told to alternate cold and heat.  We have a heating pad that I bought at Walgreens that crapped out on me after a few uses, and of course I had long since thrown the receipt out so I couldn’t return it.  Instead of using a heating pad, I thought that perhaps a patch would help, so I bought a couple of these Salonpas hot patches at Albertson’s for only $1.79 each plus tax.

Yesterday after I finished with the ice pack, I put the patch on myself because my partner was sleeping at the time and I didn’t want to wake him up, but I put it on crooked and it was way below where I needed it to be so it didn’t really do me any good.  Although when he woke up I asked him to remove it and put it up higher, but removing it took away all of it’s stickiness, so it kept coming off.  Today I asked him to put it on me so it was on right and he did and I can’t even begin to tell you how good it feels.

I normally experience pain most when I am sitting in my desk chair typing, like now, or when I am walking.  The only pain I am feeling is from the heat from this hot patch, so it’s not too bad.  I haven’t gone for a walk yet, but I did walk to Albertson’s to buy 5 more of these along with my other groceries and my back didn’t give me any pain then either.  So I don’t know if the heat helps stop the pain, or if it has some kind of medication in the patch that helps the pain.  I can’t read the ingredients list and I’m too lazy to Google all of those words lol.

At any rate, it sure is helping me and I really love it.  I don’t like having to spend a lot of money buying patches, but it sure does beat having to buy heating pads that crap out on you and using electricity AND not being able to bring the heating pad with you out on walks.  I really like that it’s on me until I take it off, which it says I can wear for up to 8 hours.  I wonder if it will be hot for 8 whole hours?  I’ll have to find out later tonight when I take it off before my bath.

By the way, I am not a spokesperson for Salonpas or Hisamitsu and I have not been paid to write this post.  Opinions expressed here are my own.

Those cookies were how many calories?

cookies

We all know that cookies aren’t the best things in the world to eat and that we should eat them as a treat and only in moderation, right?  My mother used to give us 2 cookies at night before we went to bed.  We always wanted more, but she insisted that 2 were enough.  Now I know why.

One of the reasons I got so fat was because I didn’t care how many calories were in my cookies.  We would buy 2 bags of Albertson’s cookies when they were on sale for 2 for $5 because that’s a pretty good deal right?  We each had our own bag and we would both finish our respective bags by the end of the day.

In the words of Julia Roberts from Pretty Woman “Big mistake, big, HUGE!”

One single cookie is 130 calories and even though 130 doesn’t sound like a lot, can you imagine eating a whole bag in a single day?  Those calories add up.  I can see eating 2 cookies for 260 calories and that should be the limit, right?  Oh no, we ate THE WHOLE BAG!  That whole bag of 18 cookies at 130 calories per cookie adds up to 2340 calories.  In ONE day!

Using the Noom app, I have learned that to lose weight you must eat a limit of 1400 calories, that is depending on if you are exercising, those days the Noom app lets me eat 1700 – 1800 calories.  But if I’m not exercising because A.) I’m too lazy or B.) my back and my still broken, but healing arm are in pain, then I should really stick to 1400 calories.  That is how I have been so successful that I have lost 50lbs in less than 4 months.

What brought this up is that we bought a bag of cookies yesterday because it was on the reduced (stale) rack for $1.99 and we figured that we haven’t had cookies in a long time so why not, right?  Well, last night I had 2 cookies and even though it was very good, I knew that 2 were my absolute limit.  I looked in the bag today and there are only 3 cookies left.  My partner is also trying to lose weight, but apparently he isn’t counting as many calories as I am lol.  I think that is okay for him because he isn’t really taking it too seriously, but I am very strict with myself, so if he wants those last 3 cookies, he can help himself because I don’t want them.

I have to practice complete self control at all times otherwise I am going to fail.  Without self control, who knows where I would be today.  I might still be 263lbs or who knows, I might be 270 by now.

Cookies are a great treat once in awhile, but I try to stay as far away from them as I can because as far as I’m concerned, they are a diet killer.

Tomorrow is my weigh in day so I am hoping for some good results.  Until then…

RoboStir

Have you seen this new product advertised on TV?  Well, I’m a huge sucker for new inventions but I didn’t really think that I would have a need for one of these until recently.

I was making some gravy from the packets (because it’s cheaper) and it says in the instructions that you have to stir it constantly.  Well, I have carpal tunnel syndrome so stirring isn’t a great thing for my hands.

Oddly enough my hands and wrists aren’t what is bothering me when I stir, now I have a new pain in my arms just below my elbows.  It’s not just my stirring arm, it’s both arms.

I’m having trouble picking up every day things like the milk carton or the tea jug.  I’ve even had trouble picking up a cup of coffee.  So if I have pain picking things up, then just imagine how much pain I am in when I try to stir things.

So I decided yesterday that I would buy a RoboStir because it was only $9.99 at Albertson’s.  I didn’t use it right away but I did turn it on and it looks hilarious bouncing around the empty pain.

I wanted to try it today so I made some oatmeal for lunch and had this thing stirring while it was cooking and it was hilarious to watch.  I mean, it did a good job, it was just funny to see it in action.

If I had my eyes closed, I could swear that someone put a vibrator in my food.  That’s how funny it sounded to me.

RoboStir did the job it was paid to do and I did not regret for one minute the money I spent on this new toy.  It wasn’t a frivolous purchase because I had thought about buying it ever since my new arm pain started developing.

I totally recommend this for anyone who has any pain in their arms.

*not a paid endorsement

Is it Divine or Psychic?

Last night when my shows were finished I had to go to the grocery store so that I would have some body wash to wash myself with this morning after my bike ride.  I’m standing in front of the body wash trying to find which one was more affordable since they skyrocketed in price.

This very tall guy came over to me and asked if my name was Bill, I looked up at him and said nope, it’s Mike and he said ok thanks and walked away.  Half a minute later he and 3 other people, 2 women and another guy came over to me.  One of the women introduces herself to me and says that the 2nd guy wrote down the name Michael and Michelle.

I’m thinking, what the hell is going on?  Why do they care what my… then it kicks in, they’re bible beaters.  They had decided they were going to go “pray” for someone and so they thought ok, let’s write down some things and see if we can find a person who resembles anything we write.  The two guys wrote down different things so they were looking to see who would be right.  I don’t know if it was a bet or if they were just going to see who would be more on target than the other.

They wrote down first names, the one guy wrote Bill and the other guy Michael and Michelle.  They wrote down a place to go, Albertson’s and McDonald’s.  They said they were going to go to Denny’s but decided let’s try the Albertson’s/McDonald’s combo, they’re right across the street from each other and Denny’s is across town.  They also wrote down a few other things.

Ok so getting back to it, when the 2nd guy said Michael/Michelle I said well actually, both are correct.  Let me explain.  My name is Michel.  That’s pronounced like Michael here in the US but it’s pronounced Michelle in France.  It’s a french name.

When they told me they were going to go to McDonald’s I told them, well my last name is McDonald.  They were blown away.  I told the first guy, you said bill right?  Well, my sisters first boyfriends name was Bill.  They were blown away again.  I thought it was hilarious.

The second guy said they were looking for a guy in khaki shorts which I was wearing.  He also showed me that he wrote down the word Superman, they were looking for someone possibly wearing a superman t-shirt.  Well, I wasn’t but I am a huge superman fan.

I didn’t tell them this but when I say I love superman, it’s not like when someone says they love something.  I really REALLY love Superman.  Ok not sexually but I am a HUGE fan.  I watched every episode of the Adventures of Superman with George Reeves from the 50’s but in the 70’s.  I LOVED that show.  I have seen every Superman movie.  I missed Lois and Clark in the 90’s, I’ve seen a few episodes and I’d like to see it from beginning to end.  And I have seen every episode of all 10 years of Smallville.  I read some Superman comic books in my childhood.  Not every issue, only what my parents could afford to buy me.  I LOVE Superman lol.

Oh the first guy, the tall guy said the word “Burgerstan” which threw me for a second.  I said that we (when I say we I mean Darrin and his brother) used to own a house on Berger Street.  Burgerstan, however it’s spelled sounds very similar to Berger Street.

As I’m confirming all of these things I’m getting chills.  I knew that at some point it was all leading to them praying for me and even though I don’t really like that, I figured, they got all these things right, or I helped them interpret them as right, I may as well let them do what they were going to do.  You know?  I don’t like it but I let them, as if it was their prize or something lol.

So it all eventually lead to it and they asked if they could and I said yeah, might as well but do it before the store closes lol.  So the second guy is praying and he finishes but then one of the girls wanted to pray too and I’m thinking oh god, just get it over with so I can get home.  I saw in my peripheral vision a store employee look over at us and I mouthed “help me” but he walked away.  DAMN HIM!

I tell you, I was a bit freaked out.  I asked them if they were all psychic and they said no it’s the power of god or divine something or other, which I don’t believe in but whatever.  I believe that there may have either been some psychic energy happening or it was all coincidence.  Who knows.  I thought it was creepy but also amazing at the same time.  I didn’t need to be prayed for, no, I didn’t WANT to be prayed for lol.

Whatever, there you have it.  My freaky night last night lol.

Brussells Sprouts

Growing up my mother served this vegetable at least once a week.  Brussels Sprouts was a very good idea to give to children to help them get their veggies.  However, my stepdad tainted them for me by calling them “Monkey Balls”.  I didn’t mind the taste of them but the more I thought about the image of monkey testicles in my head the less appealing they were for me.  I would eat them because I had to, I didn’t want to upset mother but at the same time the image in my head was unappealing to me so they became disgusting.

Since I was thrown out onto the streets at the age of 17 I have vowed to never eat them or even think about them again.  Well, it’s been 23 years and I think that I’ve grown enough to get over it.

I didn’t know when they were in season and Albertson’s has had them for a little over a week now so I assume July is their season(?).  I’ve been waiting for them to carry them in the produce (not frozen) section so that I could steam them and last night I finally got that chance.

I posted on my Facebook wall “Cooking a healthy dinner. 4oz boneless skinless chicken breast with 1/2 cup white rice and 3 large Brussels Sprouts. Yum yum.” and got quite a lot of responses.  Nobody ever responds to my wall posts but I guess that one struck a chord.  Apparently people love these balls.  The conversation ended with 20 responses with 2 people “liking” that post.

I discovered in this conversation that it is ok to steam them as long as I keep an eye on them.  I steamed them in the rice cooker with white rice cooking below and the timing was perfect.  When the rice was finished and the steamer button popped to “warming”, the sprouts were finished.  When I cook brown rice and steam veggies, the brown rice takes longer and over steams the veggies so it’s good to know that white rice cooking time is precise.

We only bought 10 sprouts at the store and we each had 3 last night (they were huge) and Darrin loved them so much he ate the rest this morning so we will need to get more.  Although, I don’t want to make this an everyday vegetable, I don’t want to get sick of them too fast.

I have gotten over the name “Monkey Balls” and it’s a good thing because they are only 7 calories per sprout.  Hello!  7 Calories!  That’s awesome.