Sunday, July 7, 2013

Shopping from Home

With four young children at home, I've become quite the online shopper!  I actually prefer shopping online, or at least doing some online research before I pick something up in the store.  I like being able to compare prices and read reviews, not to mention the whole not-shopping-with-all-the-kids thing.  Shopping online frees up my time; I shop online in the evenings while I nurse Isaac to sleep, freeing up our weekends for family time together.

So where do I shop?

Amazon  I'm a total Amazon addict.  I always have a running wishlist there.  I read reviews, check out other related products, and really feel like I am able to make good decisions with the amount of information they give me.  Just as often as I purchase things, I talk myself out of them by reading reviews.  Sometimes this leads me to a better version of the product, sometimes I convince myself its a waste of money.  I don't have Amazon prime, but its easy enough to wait until I have enough in my cart to hit free shipping.  With homeschooling, there are always books and resources I need to buy.  :)

thredUP  This is a new site to me.  I just made my first purchase the other day and am very pleased.  ThredUP is like a big online resale shop for kids and womens clothing.  I found it super easy to search by size, color, type of clothing, etc.  They even have a few nursing tops and lots of  maternity things.  I ordered a Boob brand nursing top and a Gap jean skirt.  I guess they are super picky with what they take in, so items are in really good condition or even new with tags.  You can also send in clothing for them to sell.  If you'd like to try it out, click through this link for $10 off!  :)  Totally beats going clothes shopping with kids in tow!

Vitacost is like a health food store online.  Their prices are good, and they carry much of what I would buy at our local health food store, only cheaper.  (brown rice pasta, spices, beauty products, gluten free flours, toothpaste, etc)  Whenever I add anything to my shopping list, I check Vitacost first.  Its usually cheaper and makes my shopping trip that much shorter when I actually do leave the house.  Use my link for $10 off your first purchase. ships really fast, two days to my door usually.  I use them if I need something quickly, or from time to time they have coupon codes that are worth using.  Their family of sites now includes (a toy store), (books) and several more.  If you're new to their site use ONEWORD for 20% off an order.  Their sites all ship together and uses one cart so you can get to free shipping pretty easily.  Items I recently purchased here include Julia's new car seat, a nice picnic blanket, and Legos on sale.  They have a great return policy (they pay return shipping, Amazon does not), and great customer service.

Price Checking:

Before I make a purchase I usually check around for the best price.  I do a search for the item and check several stores for their current price.  Take into consideration whether or not this store is going to charge you shipping on the item, and whether or not they have active coupon codes.  Sometimes checking the company's web page will help you find a discount.

Always check for coupon codes before ordering from a website!

If I am curious as to the price history of an item, will tell me what an item has been priced at on Amazon for the last year or so.  Sometimes a good deal is actually always that price, so it doesn't need to be snatched up right away.  I've seen deal blogs post that something is an amazing deal right now, only to search this site and find out that the item is usually this price or even lower at times.

We have a Discover card.  If I shop through the Discover website, sometimes retailers offer a certain discount or percent back.  I don't remember to use this as often as I should, but its been helpful when I do.  I also can use cashback money for gift cards.  Sometimes the stores offer more than the rewards money.  For example, it costs me $20 of my cashback money to get a $25 gift card to Old Navy.  I charge quite a bit on my Discover card each month and always pay it off, earning free cashback gift cards.  I just got a Kindle with Staples gift cards (free!!!).  We've had our Discover card for over twelve years now and have always had good customer service.  If you're interested in signing up, email me and I can get you a $50 cashback bonus.  christy.vw AT gmail DOT com  :)

Always check shipping costs and see if you can get free shipping at a certain amount.  Also check the return policy.  I recently bought 4 different pairs of shorts from Old Navy, tried them on at home, and then returned all but one pair.  I also did that with Maurices.  Since I purchased enough to get free shipping to me, all I had to do was run into the store and make a quick return once I knew what I wanted to keep.  While I don't advise doing this all the time, it certainly solved my I-need-to-buy-shorts-but-don't-want-to-take-four-kids-into-the-dressing-room-with-me problem.

This post contains a few referral links, mainly because I like giving links to things that I'm talking about so you can find them easier.  Believe me, none of them pay very much, but if you click through and use my referrals it encourages me to keep posting and sharing with you all!  :)

Do you shop online much or is my mail lady the only one bringing package after package to my front door?  I really should bake her cookies or something...


  1. I love online shopping! We're having our 3rd soon and it's just so much easier!

  2. Now that we are out in the country we are buying more online. Thanks for the tips!!

  3. I LOVE! I order all the kids' toys for their birthdays/Christmas from there. I actually called them once, asking if they had a rewards program like their site does. They don't, but when he looked at my account he gave me a $10 credit. :)