Monday, April 27, 2009

Why I Love Powell's Books

The short answer is: because they buy back my books and cash in my hot little hands always make me super happy.

When Tom and I first met, we use to buy our books from Barnes & Noble because we had a B&N card which saved us 10% on each purchase. And when that ran out after a year, we bought our books from Costco. Then when we got married, we registered for a few books on and had been recycling the store credit from the registry ever since. In the summer of 2007, we did a massive overhaul of our stuff and sold about $400 worth of books to Powell's. Most of the big ticket items were Tom's fantasy and sci-fi books in paperback and we donated the rest to Oregon Women Lawyers (OWLS).

In an effort to make *more* room for the baby, I recently cleared out all of my German literature books. These are the ones I kept from college with the intention of going back to the language or picking up a German poetry book to read one day when I had free time (ha!). Ten years passed and I did not once open up these books. I really didn't think Powell's was going to buy them back, but to my surprise, they bought all but two. I was able to exchange this one box of books for $47 cash or $57 in store credit. I opted for store credit this time and exchanged it for "Healthy Sleeping Habits," "Baby Bargain Books," and "Lonely Planet's Alaska" (2009). A box of books that had been sitting on my shelf for 3 books on my wish list, plus $10 store credit? Not a bad trade-off I say!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Baby Showers

I know that some women have 4-5 showers. I..ahem...only had 3 and each one was different from the other and fabulous. Our first shower was in Texas (in January 2009), hosted by Tom's mom, and attended by most of Tom's family. Mary and Aunt Abby spent days decorating, cleaning, shopping, planning, and preparing for the shower. We really appreciate all of their hard work as the shower was a hit! Mary had this great idea of posting everyone's baby pictures on the wall and participants had to guess whose baby picture it was. I have to say...that was quite a challenging game!

Our second shower was in the Bay Area (in March 2009), hosted by mom and Helmut, where mostly our friends attended. The shower was held at Chef Yu's, a Chinese restaurant in Sunnyvale. Mom decorated our private room with baby items she knit, such as a baby sweater, teddy bear, and mobile. She also used her knit balls to decorate the table and gave them away to guests with children or those who are expecting. We ordered a half sheet of cake from a Chinese bakery that was quite yummy!

Our last and final shower was held in Portland (in April), where most of my female friends from law school attended. The theme was ducks, and yellow and white. I made a Caesar salad, a fruit salad, pesto penne pasta salad, veggie tray, and Is it really better than sex? cake using Paula Deen's recipe. I also ordered tea sandwiches and a dessert tray from Grand Central Bakery and served iced tea, lemonade, coffee, and water. The party favors were lemon-scented, duck-shaped soap with a Stampin' Up! image on the outside (of course) and we played 5 different games (oh my!).