Sunday, December 26

Buying Things Post-Christmas

Sorry I've been MIA for so long. I went on my first trip overseas with USAID this month. I spent 15 days in Senegal and Nigeria- lots of good times and hard work.

Anyway, if you're planning on going shopping today and tomorrow, here are some discounts to take with you:

1) Gap outlet- buy one item, get one free.
2)Barnes and Nobles- 25% off one item

Anyway I'm off and will let you know what else I find! Follow me @stefigrosser for up to the minute updates.

Sunday, November 28

Free day for kids at the Newseum

Event: ‘Yes, Virginia, There Is a Santa Claus’
Saturday, December 11, 2010
11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Join us for a day of special events and activities for all ages, inspired by Francis P. Church’s 1897 New York Sun editorial assuring 8-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon that there was, indeed, a Santa Claus.

• Hear a reading of the heartwarming Sun editorial — with a special appearance by you-know-who!

• Why would a newspaper write about Santa Claus? Learn what newspaper editorials are all about and even try writing your own.

• Make your own snow globe and recycle old newspapers into beautiful holiday wreaths.

• Enjoy live performances of holiday carols.

• Breaking news! Record a Santa sighting at our “Be a TV Reporter” experience.

FREE admission for every child who brings a new, unwrapped toy to donate to Toys for Tots. Buy one general admission ticket between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. any Saturday or Sunday and get another one free. General Admission Prices: Adults (19 to 64) $19.95 plus tax; Seniors (65+), military and students with valid ID $17.95 plus tax; Youth (7 to 18) $12.95 plus tax; Children (6 and younger) Free

Saturday, November 27 Coupon Code!

This weekend (11/26-28), use promo code SAVE on to get 80% off any dining certificate, Dinner of the Month Club membership or gift card. A $25 dining certificate valid at local restaurants is usually $10 at, so with this promotion you can grab one for only $2. Often you need to dine-in to use the certificate, so be sure to read the fine print.

Last Day for FREE Items at CVS

CVS always has the best black friday deals around. That's because they have dozens of FREE items. You buy one for $3.99 and they give you a $3.99 coupon. Many of these items are limit 5 so you can keep handing in each item and buying it again using your initial bonus bucks. Plus if you have coupons you can pay $2.99 and still get $3.99 back. Don't forget to print out Colgate coupons online before you go, and to get herbal essence coupons as well.

I made 22 separate purchases at the self-check out machine and paid a total of $9.70. However I ended up with $6.99 in bonus bucks back. So I really spent under $3.00 for all of the items in the picture.

This whole ordeal took me under an hour because I planned my attack before I even left my house. Good luck to you all- you have the rest of the day to get all these items for free!

Only read this tip if you are an ADVANCED bonus buck user: Also remember to start with the lowest priced items, then their duplicates, and then work up from there. If you have a coupon you need to add another item to your purchase for the value of the coupon or else your bonus buck won't work. This is because your purchase always needs to be the same price as the bonus buck or more. The self-check out machines won't let you be in the negative (ie the item is $3 and you have a $3 bonus buck and a $1 coupon therefore the store owes you $1).

Tuesday, November 2

Free with I VOTED sticker

I hope you have voted by now!! Polls close soon.

Take your I voted sticker to the following places for free food:

Stop by California Tortilla with an “I Voted” sticker on Tuesday (11/2) and get a FREE Taco. No purchase necessary.

Stop by Harris Tap Room (Pentagon or Clarendon) for free dessert today and tomorrow.

Know of other deals? Let me know here!

Saturday, October 23

Arena Stage Reopens Today

A few weeks ago it was the Artisphere in Rosslyn and today it is Arena Stage near the waterfront metro station. Arena is having its grand reopening all day today, which means free performances galore!!

While all the advance tickets are long gone, there will still be tickets available at the door today starting at 10 AM (so hurry on up).

There are also several events for which you do not need any tickets so don't not go just because you have no ticket in hand and it may be 1 PM when you're reading this.

Click here to see the full schedule!

Free Dinner Wednesday Nights

Well, it turns out that every Wednesday night at Whole Foods (for sure the Clarendon location) is amazing sample night. They produce a menu and there are several cooking stations where you're handed a plate to sample the fish, chicken, basically whatever is on their menu that night.

The best time to go is from 5-6:30. I got there at 7:00 last Wednesday night and there was only one hot station left (serving delicious rock fish with a side salad), one dessert station (pumpkin pie), one cheese, cracker, jam station, and one wine station.

My mole in customer service told me I missed two other hot stations that had been open earlier in the evening!

Sunday, September 26

Review of DC Admission Museums

Since I've now been to 6 DC museums that usually charge fees in the last few weeks, I thought I'd write a review of them here for everyone who may have to pay for these in the future.

This review is written in the order that I went to them.

1. Corcoran. I really enjoyed this museum (normally $10 or $8 with student ID). Two exhibits were closed when I went so there wasn't as much to see as I had expected but what was there was really incredible. I do think it's criminal for them to have control of Samuel Morse's incredible painting of the House of Representatives while they still met in the Statuary Hall. That painting deserves to be in the U.S. Capitol for every American to see without paying. Plus it would help dispel the horribly false rumours about Members of Congress spying on each other due to the acoustics. As you can see in the picture, the room had carpeting and curtains back then, ruining any spying opportunities for John Quincy Adams. Plus, who knew Sam Morse was a painter before he decided to invent Morse Code! If anyone wants to hold a protest in front of the Corcoran with posters that say "FREE MORSE'S STATUARY HALL PAINTING" I am in!

2. Kreeger Museum. The Kreeger Museum, normally $10 or $7 with student ID, is located past Georgetown off of Fox Hall Road. I would not recommend biking there, as I did, because of never ending hill. Anyway Mr. Kreeger and I sadly do not share the same taste in art. I did enjoy seeing his home, and the library with four picassos. Luckily he enjoyed art with a lot of color. Still, I was mostly unmoved by his choice of art.

3. Woodrow Wilson Presidential Museum. This is DC's only presidential museum. It is located on S street and 23rd near Embassy Row. I used to really like Wilson for his League of Nations effort. But it's hard to get over the fact that he was against segregation and women's rights. Anyway, Wilson lived in this house for three years after he left the White House, right up until his death. His funeral was held in this house, as well. When Woodrow lived here he was mostly blind and couldn't use his legs (or arms?) so they had an elevator installed for him. The house was okay...I didn't spend much time here. Some of the house was closed when I went. Admission is usually a whopping $12 so don't forget your student ID ($5).

4. National Geographic - Nat Geo has an incredible gecko exhibit going on now with LIVE gecko species from around the world. Admission is FREE Wednesdays! Other times it will cost you $7, $6 with student ID. I LOVED this exhibit. Seeing and learning about geckos was truly fascinating. If you go, watch the video about scientists developing new adhesives after studying how geckos stick to walls. Their natural adhesive strategy is so good that their feet can hold 2 people!! Go figure. Go GECKOS! (all totally harmless by the way). You have until January 5th to see these fine creatures.

5. Phillips Collection - As I mentioned before, the Phillips is FREE the rest of September due to the fire closing down many of its usual exhibits. The building that was open was wonderful. We loved every moment there. Their Renoirs and Van Goghs were among the best that I've seen. The Monets really great too. For once I loved Rothko. I thought I hated him after visiting his black canvasses at the National Gallery of Modern Art's Tower but his work at the Phillips Collection was honestly stunning. Poor church who hired him to make the black canvasses. GREAT News about Phillips- while they normally charge $10 for adults, Tuesday through Friday they take any donation you want to contribute rather than charging a set admission price!!

6. Newseum - Thank goodness for free museum day because Shawn and I weren't about to pay $40 for entrance here. I could see why they have to charge so much though- there are tons of interactive multimedia exhibits. I'd pay full price perhaps when I have two kids, and it's free kids day. My favorite exhibits were the ones on coverage of Katrina, September 11th, and the gallery of Pulitzer Price winners. I was moved to tears during all three. Well done. Well done.

In the past year I made it into the Crime and Punishment Museum for free too. I thought it was a lot of fun and educational at the same time. I also had the opportunity to go to the Spy Museum for free because my ex-boyfriend paid for our admissions. I loved that too and thought it was a ton of fun.

Tuesday, September 21

Free Museum Day: Sept 25

Smithsonian Media is hosting free museum day on September 25th starting at 9 AM. You need to register online to choose a museum. You can get one ticket for up to two people. Click here to choose where you want to go!

FREE Food and Wine Fest this weekend

Regal Discovery Tour
To secure your spot, RSVP with code WDCBUICK at for you and up to 3 Guests

Hey, DC, come on a journey of culinary and automotive discovery: hit the Westin for custom cocktails, a Food & Wine-approved menu offering up the mouthwatering secrets of vaunted NYC chef Michael Psilakis, products crafted by local artisans, an insider's view on driving America's backroads to find hidden food gems, and a test-drive of the new, sport-injected Buick Regal -- just make sure to keep those food gems off the seats.
The Westin Alexandria
400 Courthouse Square
Alexandria, VA 22314
Saturday, 9/25/2010 &
Sunday, 9/26/2010

Friday, September 10

Phillips Collection Free this September

For the rest of this month you can visit the Philips collection for free. They announced this deal right after they reopened from the fire.

From their press release:
The Phillips Collection reopens Saturday, September 4 after closing
due to a renovation-related fire on the roof of the Phillips House. The Phillips House will
remain closed for repairs until further notice. All other galleries will open, including those
where special exhibitions Pousette-Dart: Predominantly White Paintings and Robert
Ryman: Variations and Improvisations are on view through September 12, 2010. Regular
museum admission is waived for the month of September; visitor contributions by donation
are gladly accepted.

Friday, September 3

Tomorrow is the LAST Day for free Corcoran this year!

may 29-september 4, 2010

Join the Corcoran on Saturdays this summer for Gallery tours, workshops, demonstrations, and performances! Enjoy our summer exhibitions and programming free of admission Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend.

Special programs—many of which feature staff, faculty, and students—have been planned to celebrate the Corcoran’s collection and the temporary exhibitions Helios: Eadweard Muybridge in a Time of Change and Chuck Close Prints: Process and Collaboration.

New activities will be added regularly, so please check back frequently for the most up-to-date calendar of events. Programs are free and no pre-registration is required unless otherwise noted.

Thursday, July 15


As you may know I am a bit obsessed with efficiency. In high school I taught myself how to speak while inhaling so I wouldn't need to waste time breathing, When I ditched high school one day to go visit the Phoenix state legislature I remember being so impressed with the man who read the tasks before the body. He was a speed reader and I had never heard anyone speak so quickly.

He inspired me to learn how to say all the presidents; names in one breath, a feat I still master today.

Anyway today I learned about a style of writing called boustrophedon. It was a style used by the Etruscans. Basically they would alternate the direction of writing on each line so your eyes wouldn't have to waste time running back over to one side of the page. BRILLIANT!!

Why don't we do that!?

Friday, July 9

FREE Food Today!

Today is your lucky day, fellow freegans!

It is Cow Appreciation Day, meaning free entrees at Chick-Fil-A! All you have to do is dress up like a cow. EASY!!! just put white circle pieces of paper on your outfit. unless you're wearing white, then do black. Click here for more details.

Also today, Cosi is giving out free drinks from 2-4 PM! Present your registered CosìCard and choose from our featured cold beverages including Così® Iced Tea, Così® Sangria, Così® Habanero Watermelon Lemonade and more.

Free Slurpees on July 11th

Every July 11th, 7-11s host an event where they give out free slurpees from 8 AM until 11 PM. My husband and I love slurpees from 7-11 (especially mixing the coke and cherry flavors), but honestly this is not worth it.

Last year I went to this event at a 7-11 in Virginia and they gave us tiny dixie cups to fill up. Really 7-11? You can't give away smalls? They cost the consumer like 79 cents and cost the store nothing.

It's not worth it for a tiny dixie cup's worth!! Sad times.

Wednesday, July 7

Buying a house? If not, buy one!

Mortgage rates are at a 30-year low (around 4.58 percent). When we bought our apartment in 2007 we paid 6.5 percent and thought that was decent! We still haven't re-financed because we plan to buy a house in the next year, and refinancing on a co-op isn't so easy!

Anyway if any of my readers are interested in getting a mortgage at an ever better than advertised rate, my husband's dad is a mortgage broker and can give my friends and followers a "friends and family discount."

Let me know if you're interested (email me at and I can set you up! He is fluent in spanish and english.

Good luck home buying! (by the way, my favorite site for looking at homes is Also if I buy a house I'll do it through red fin agents since they charge much less interest than a real estate agent.

Free Mie N Yu food!

Mie N Yu is a really neat restaurant in Georgetown. They get a 10 for decor and a 9 for food. Only a 6 for price (it's on the costlier side).

However for all of you freegans, there is an hour of free food and drinks catered by Mie n Yu at the Art Whino art gallery at the National Harbor.

This event is taking place on Friday, July 9 from 7-8 PM. From 8-11 there is a sit down meal if you want to pay $65 for a 3-course meal (I don't).

Please note that it isn't really "free" as you have to pay to park at the national harbor, 24 hours a day (grrrrr). Parking for 2 hours is $4. If you haven't been before this is a good opportunity to go. Plus you can visit our old friend the Awakening.

Anyway, more information below.

Art Whino invites you to join us for an evening of sensory delights in our Premiere night of a monthly series of Indulge events. This sensational event combines an exciting exhibition of art, a delicious food spread from noted Mie N Yu restaurant, a special drink pairing for each dish, and live music performance by Tamara Wellons. Combining the area’s best art, food, music and drinks, Indulge event celebrates the connection between all of these sensory delights that make life so enjoyable.

Friday, July 9th, from 7pm – 11pm

7-8pm Open to the public Free Food and Drink Tasting.

8pm-11pm Ticketed Main Event. Seated food tasting. Musical performance by Tamara Wellons with guitarist and percussionist.

Location: Art Whino Gallery
173 Waterfront St.
National Harbor, MD 20745

Tickets - $65 in Advance (No tickets sold the day of the event). Admission price includes 3 courses tasting. Also with the price of admission 3 complimentary specially crafted beverages and musical performance by Tamara Wellons.

To purchase tickets, email

This is a 21 and older event.

Monday, July 5

Free parking in DC today!

DC parking enforcement has the day off so enjoy parking in any space you please. Seems like they won't even tow abandoned vehicles today so get out to a Smithsonian or enjoy the last day of the Folklife Festival!

Sunday, July 4

Independence Day

Happy Birthday USA!

I just returned from a great bike ride from Rosslyn to the Capitol, via the Memorial Bridge and Constitution. I LOVE days when the streets are closed to cars, allowing bikes to reign supreme. It reminds me of my fantasy of DC becoming car-free one day. Anyway if you have a bike, go forth and ride away.

We got to see the parade and also stopped in Hirshhorn for a bit. Sadly, Yves Klein is taking up the second floor. Though, I do love the color blue and the video about him did make me laugh a bit.

Enjoy the fireworks tonight!! I will be watching from Iwo Jima, next to my apartment.

Wednesday, June 30 coupon code

As you have heard from my in the past, is a great place to buy discounted coupons to local area restaurants. They sell $25 off coupons for $10, but with discount codes you can get these for only $2. There are usually rules like you must spend $35 to use your $25 coupon but even then with 18 percent tip and tax the bill comes to $17 so you get a $42 meal for $19 (including the $2 coupon fee).

To get 80% off your order type in the coupon code SUMMER. This ends tonight!

Don't forget you can get an additional 15% off your purchase by using your ebates account (you should use your free ebates account for EVERY online purchase you make). To join ebates, click here.

When you purchase your coupons, they are valid for one year. A sad thing happened last night when we got to a Crystal City Thai restaurant- Neramitro- with a coupon we bought back in September, they had a sign up near the front door that they were no longer accepting coupons as of June 1.

I was really bummed but when I spoke with the manager they said I could have $10 off my tab. So of course we ordered one $10.95 dish. They ended up telling us not to pay anything, though we did leave a tip of course.

Anyway I'm not as angry since I only paid $2 for the coupon, but that still shouldn't happen since the coupon is really a contract once you pay for it.

Tuesday, June 29

The new DC Taxi system

So as you all know, several months ago DC taxis switched from a zone system to a metered system. One would think this new system is better for the consumer because you don't have to trust the driver to tell you how many zones you crossed or attempt to read a color coded map that fails to list street names.

HOWEVER, I have realized that taxi drivers will now go out of their way to take longer routes so that they can charge more on the meter. Sure this was bound to happen but taxi riders should be aware of the best path to their destination and should feel to tell the driver which way to go.

I live in Rosslyn and I've taken two taxis from Rosslyn to Union Station under the new system. Both times the driver took 110 to 395 instead of going straight down constitution. This longer, highway route ended up costing $17. The next time I did this ride and told them to take constitution it was only $12.

I realize that in rush hour constitution is really slow but when I was going it was during the early and late hours or the weekend when there was no traffic.

Saturday, June 26

A personal update

As you may know, I've been working full time while attending graduate school in the evenings for the past 2 1/2 years. Well this past May I finally graduated from Johns Hopkins with a Masters in Government!

During my last year I applied for the Presidential Management Fellowship and was named a finalist back in February. In April I attended the PMF finalist job fair and interviewed with 12 government agencies in 2 days. It was one of the most intense experiences I've had but a lot of fun too.

I accepted a position with USAID's Office of Development Credit where I will get to tell the success stories of people who benefit from loan guarantees around the world. Basically the US government guarantees 50 percent of loans banks in developing countries make to poorer sectors. This makes the loans less risky to the banks. Plus it turns out the poor often pay back loans at a much higher rate than other sectors! So in the past 10 years the US government has only spent $62 million and has leveraged $1.9 billion worth of credit. I'm pretty excited to help work towards international development in a way that empowers people by changing structures that are currently unfavorable to the poor.

Also I will get to work for two months (Aug and September) with the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility. I'm going to be helping them come up with a plan to get the deficit back down to 3 percent of our annual GDP.

I'm so excited to use my frugal skills and passions to help our country.

PS The federal government pays a lot more than the nonprofit sector! But I will continue to be careful about how I spend money, though perhaps not AS careful.

Friday, June 25

Founding Farmers

My husband and I went out to Founding Farmers for the first time a few weeks ago. While they have some pretty expensive menu items, they also had some great food at great prices. Plus I was impressed by the value of the food as the plate size was very generous.

I thought the best thing on the menu was the Creamy Brie, Onion Jam, and Sliced Organic Apples Flat Bread for $8. This was really delicious and I would go back and just order that. The corn bread appetizer for $5 was also incredible and I don't usually like any of the aforementioned things- brie, apple sauce, or corn bread!

Founding farmers is also great because the chefs use locally grown foods.

Thursday, June 24

Sweet Charity Gala

I lucked out this past Monday when my friend Chelsea told me she had an extra ticket to the Heart of America's Sweet Charity gala and invited me to go with her.

The event was at the Mandarin Oriental (home of CityZen restaurant which I'm too cheap to try despite it's rave reviews), a beautiful hotel near the waterfront.

This gala was the best DC gala I've been to. It features over 60 of DC's top chefs who serve you savory and/or sweet treats from their restaurants. Once you're in all of the alcohol and food is completely free. I'm not a huge fan of alcohol but the food was incredible!

Jose Andre's people were there from the Mini Bar and I got to try his liquid nitrogen popcorn with curry powder. You put the popcorn cube in your month and chew it with your mouth closed as watch smoke out out of your nose as the liquid nitrogen reacts to your body temperature.

I though Blue Duck Tavern's orange chocolate cake was to die for. As was the passion fruit cheesecake on a stick dunked in chocolate with fried pieces of crepe dough around the edges (sorry I forget where this was from). I also loved the strawberry cloud on seared tuna with a balsalmic glaze. Some of the best truffles were chocolate caramel truffles with rock salt on top (what a great mix). Oh and BlackSalt restaurant has an amazing chocolate bark with pretzels mixed in and pistachios and salt on the top. There was so much food that someone mistakenly thought I was pregnant by the end of the night! Since I'm so thin I wasn't really offended, just shocked.

Anyway, after you eat the food and go to some of the culinary demonstrations they have a fashion show with models dressed in sweets and chocolate. The winner was Cruella de Vil, whose hair was sprayed in white and milk chocolate.

Wednesday, June 23

Folklife Festival- This weekend!

This weekend, and July 1-5 is the annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival. I've gone in the past and thought it was okay. It wasn't the most fun I've ever had, but if you haven't gone before it's worth stopping by.

They have food you can buy from different cultures and various performances and demonstrations going on. It's cool to go if you have young kids I think.

Here is a link to the calendar.

Sunday, June 20

Buying a bike in DC

A year ago my husband and I got new bikes. We had older bikes from growing up that we were using, but found that we were at quite the disadvantage when we went biking with friends who had much newer, lighter bikes.

Usually I like to scope out the most affordable product but in this case we wanted to get something that was very good quality.

We decided on Treks as they have a great reputation to be great bikes. We did, however, buy the cheapest bikes that Treks carry, which ended up costing about $365 each.

We were able to sell our old bikes (I had a Mongoose from 1996) for $100 each. I felt bad about spending that much money on a bike but a year later I can say it was a great investment and I am so glad that we did.

We go biking every weekend over the summer months, often 25 miles at a time. We bike to the zoo, to Bethesda, to Old Town, Shirlington, and even to Target and Shoppers. We love biking to the national mall and the Eastern Market. There are so many amazing bike trails in the area (Mt Vernon and Cap Crescent being our favorites).

We did not pay more for suspension, which I'm still fine with. We did get hybrids which is great since some trails like C and O are not paved. Our bikes are the Trek 7000. I got the female version, and my husband the male version. We did pay extra for kick stands and we also bought U locks for them.

To us the point of biking is to get off the bike at fun destinations so you have something to look forward to!

Friday, June 11

Free Malagueta Show on Sat, July 17th! 6 PM-12 AM

The Solo Show of Tatiana Suarez

Malagueta is a fusion of culture, folkloric tales and legends colorfully rendered and set in voluptuous, airy atmospheres inspired primarily by the artists Brazilian heritage.

Sketching Session with live model 7-9pm
Latin Fusion Band performance starts at 9pm

Location: Art Whino Gallery
173 Waterfront St.
National Harbor, MD 20745

Show end date: August 15th

Continuing with the amazing night of sketching of the last show we are pleased to announce we will be having sketching sessions for all our shows! The sketching session begins at 7pm and ends at 9pm and is free. We will have 15 special edition blank sketchbooks for sale at the show as well but you are welcome to bring your own sketchbook.

The event is FREE and open to the public.


Tatiana Suarez (b. 1983) is a Brooklyn-based Miami native. This emerging artist is an alumni of the University of Miami's Graphic Design program, and also works as a freelance illustrator. Her charming style is distinctive -- first, the trademark eyes that draw the viewer into a beautiful and surreal world. Suarez takes full advantage of the oil paint's ability to create creamy, soft images on canvas. Rich with symbols that stem from her Brazilian and El Salvadorian heritage, subjects appear as if they are under water, frozen in lovely stillness. The doe-eyed figures look childlike, but also exude sexual overtones, ornamented with plants, insects and other unsettling accompaniments. Beauty is presented concurrently with exotic -- even creepy -- creatures to create enchanted narratives.

Thursday, June 10

How to get three seats for the price of two on a plane

My husband's travel agent had this amazing idea that worked the last time we flew. Maybe everyone else already figured this out but it was a new idea to me, and a very brilliant idea at that!

So normally when I book seats on a flight for me and a friend/husband, I'll book them next to each other. Of course that leaves open the window or aisle, which will be snatched up first by other flyers.

Instead, when you book a flight you should book seats A and C for you and your travel companion, leaving the middle seat open. If someone does book this seat you can surprise them and tell them you'll give up the aisle so you can sit with your companion.

But no one will book the middle seats until all the aisles and window seats are taken so you are greatly increasing your chance of getting a free seat between you and your companion to spread out a bit more and be more comfortable on your flight.

Wednesday, May 12

May 18: Haagen-Dazs' Birthday= Free Ice Cream!

On May 18th Haagen-Dazs will celebrate its birthday by giving out free scoops of its original flavors (chocolate, vanilla, and coffee). GO to any haagen-dazs shop between 4 and 8 PM on the 18th to take advantage of this offer. Find out more about this offer and find your nearest Haagen-Dazs location here.

Saturday, May 8

Passport to DC: Europe TODAY

Today is the Passport to DC open house in all of the European embassies.

This will take place between 10 AM and 4 PM today.

Join the European Union Embassies in Washington, DC, for a day of family fun, food and culture. Free shuttle buses with two routes will drop visitors off at various Embassies. This year the EU is highlighting the theme GREEN EUROPE: GOOD FOR THE ECONOMY AND THE ENVIRONMENT. We want to show, through our own experience, that it is possible to tackle climate change, grow a clean energy economy of the future and become world leaders in reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least 20% by 2020. Our policies have improved EU energy security and have created new green jobs while fulfilling our social and environmental responsibility.

Friday, May 7

Goethe-Institut Washington Event- FREE

Dear friends,

We have been invited to an open house at the Goethe-Institut Washington on the evening of May 17th from 7 to 9 pm. Come to the open house to hear about the institute's upcoming events, exhibits, films, and summer language sessions that start on June 7th. The first hour of the open house will be networking, the second a tour, film, and short presentation. There will be refreshments too :)

The Goethe-Institut is a global German cultural institute, with a branch here in Washington, DC. I've put together this micro-site with schedules of our class dates and levels, and cultural events (films, exhibits, discussions, etc.)

Social Safeway Reopens

The grocery store that ripped me off throughout all my college days has reopened after a year of reconstruction and is supposed to be incredible! Most importantly this weekend they are giving away 300 $25 gift cards and have free food samples throughout the store.

Ah yes and cheese-its are on sale at Safeway for only $.99 a box this weekend!! Stock up! Have you seen the hilarious cheese-it commercial by the way?

Wednesday, April 14

ohhh Free Food on Tax Day!!

If you're like me, you did your taxes in February because you find filing taxes fun and exciting. Why wouldn't I want to get my tax rebate as soon as possible?

If you're not like me, you're filing tonight or tomorrow. My husband and I used tax act deluxe. We paid a $17 filing fee to use their program and the deluxe edition helped us ensure we weren't forgetting about any potential deductions.

Anyway regardless of when you filed or will file, you can celebrate tax day with free food tomorrow at participating locations! Here is a somewhat comprehensive list of free things.

It does not list, however, DC specific actions such as Dairy Queen handing out ice cream during lunch in front of the IRS.

Tuesday, April 6

$30 a bag for carry on?

Spirit Airlines announced today that it would begin charging $30 in advance and $45 at the gate for any carry on luggage that does not fit under the seat in front of you. This fee is actually higher than Spirit's fee to check luggage ($25/bag).

I have a feeling that passengers will protest by avoiding Spirit Airlines and as a result other airlines will not follow suit. I'm not sure why Spirit thought this would be a better idea than simply raising ticket prices by the same amount. Carrying luggage on the plane for free feels like an entitlement to most passengers and I think this new policy crosses the line. Read more here.

Tuesday, March 23


Has arrived!!!!!! Thank you Ben. Thank you Jerry. Let us us celebrate everything that is good at Ben and Jerry's. Enjoy!!

Saturday, March 20

FREE Rita's Ice today

Finally the first day of spring has arrived! Just in time for tomorrow's immigration march on the national mall!

Anyway, today you can enjoy free rita's ice from 12-10 PM in honor of Spring!!

Enjoy and click here to find the nearest Rita's location to you. There are several in DC!

Wednesday, March 17

Passover Purchases!

Passover is coming very soon and now is the time to buy matzah. Matzah is so cheap you almost wonder how it's possible to get it so low.

Anyway we made the mistake of buying 5 boxes for $2.99 yesterday from Giant- HUGE mistake.

Today I learned that Shoppers is selling 5 boxes for $1.99 AND you get a free bottle of kedem grape juice with your purchase!! Can you imagine a better deal? I mean this deal is so good you should get it even if you're not Jewish.

It is limit of 2 so you can't buy 100 to sell in front of the Foggy Bottom metro, but that would be a great way to easily double your money if you're willing to stand in each line several times.

Shoppers is DOUBLING $1 coupons!!

I can hardly contain my excitement. This has not happened in possibly 6 months and will only happen a few times a year so I implore you to take advantage.

From Thursday, March 18 through Sunday, March 21 Shoppers is doubling manufacturers' coupons up to $1.00 (this means all of your $1 coupons become $2) and $50 cent coupons will be tripled (so $.50 coupons will get you $1.50 off). This is an incredible thing that can result in many free products.

If you have been filing away your coupon booklets all year, get them out and rip out all of the $1 coupons to bring with you and to see which are really great deals. Buy things that you can use, that are on sale, and that you have coupons for.

Thursday, March 11

Need Deodorant?

There's a new website sponsored by Unilever that offers $1.25 coupons off of 6 deodorants for men and women. Get coupons for Degree, Suave and Dove products by clicking here.

Before you buy wait for a CVS sale so you can really get your deodorants at the right price. The coupons do not expire until April 10th so there is some time to wait it out.

Wednesday, March 3

See Food Inc for free tonight!

On Wednesday, March 3 from 7:00 – 9:00 PM enjoy a free film screening of “Food Inc.” at the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration, 700 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW. Note: The National Archives will also host free screenings of the 82nd Academy Award nominees. No RSVP required, for more information visit:

Credit Cards

I've posted before about signing up for an annual American Airlines rewards card to get 30,000 miles for free, and then cancelling before you're charged the first annual fee. I've done this a few years in a row and it paid for a trip to Buenos Aires.

Anyway my husband does this as well and tonight he called to cancel his card. They told him if he would keep the card for another night he would give him 3,000 miles.

His first free year doesn't even expire until June so we told them we accept the additional 3,000 miles. I'm kind of offended that when I cancelled my card a few months ago they didn't offer me 3,000! Anyway hopefully others can benefit from this advice and lobby their credit card companies to give them free things as well!

Tuesday, March 2

march 23: FREE CONE DAY

Mark your calendars for Ben & Jerry's Free Cone Day on March 23!!
I'll remind people when the day comes but be sure to get this on your calendars now so you don't over book your calendar that day.

Monday, February 22

G-40: 500 Artists together in Crystal City in March!

Art Whino teams up with Crystal City BID and Vornado to present G-40: The Summit, a month long exhibition and event series featuring over 500 artists from around the world.

The mission of G40: The Summit is to bring the leaders of the New Brow genre together in Crystal City, VA in an effort to explore, discuss and grow this movement. G-40: The Summit will be a culmination of ideas and processes, brought together and highlighted by region and style, creating, for the first time, a full cross examination of this genre.

This event will feature 75,000sqft of exhibition space with 4 floors of art! Each floor will represent different hot hubs of the New Brow movement: The DC, New York, and California metro areas, plus one all encompassing floor for international and other regional artists. Visitors of G-40: The Summit will, for the first time, be able to experience entire floors showcasing artists from these regions, and because of this set up, connect the dots of how the different sub-cultures and environs affect the art. From the laid back California Style, to the fast paced New York way of living, the art will bring a fresh visual perspective that words cannot provide. With all the different styles in one place the New Brow movement, now growing and expanding worldwide, will be more comprehensible to the viewer, finally defining the line between the movement’s beginnings to its future. A movement that currently exists without much literature or founding in “traditional” institutions, yet includes some of the most highly recognizable and sought after art in the world, will inevitably become a major player in the intellectual and mainstream art world.

Each floor will have 10-30 “Showcased artists” who will activate the space with murals and installations, helping to set the mood for their region. In addition to the showcased artists we will have an additional 50-100 region specific artists exhibited on each floor. The show will run up for a month. During the month there will be musical and visual performances, lectures, and more. Also we will feature various art related groups and non-profits, helping to promote their mission and inspire ongoing conversations about the New Brow art world in DC and beyond.


1 – Show information / performance area / Non Profit display / mixed use
5 – New York metro area artists
6 – Washington DC metro area artists
7 – California artists
8 – All Encompassing

Event Schedule:

Show Month: March 2010
Open Hours: Wednesdays & Thursdays: 5 – 10pm,
Fridays & Saturdays: 12pm – 12am
Sundays: 12pm – 6pm
Mondays & Tuesdays: Closed

Event Locations

223 23rd St. Arlington, VA 22202

Metro Accessible and pleny of parking
For more info go to:

Saturday, February 20

Great Grocery Deals this Weekend!

Safeway is selling 1 lb containers of strawberries for $1.99. Remember to ask for a rain check in they're out. The rain checks are good for 90 days.

Giant has Bryers ice cream for $1.99 and stem vine tomatoes as well as white potatoes for $1.77/lb.

Bon apetit!

Friday, February 12

Free DC Short Film Festival on Feb 23 and 25

New Voices, Human Views

Short films celebrating the human experience

February 23 and 25, 7:00 p.m.

WASHINGTON--The DC Shorts Film Festival and the Washington Jewish Film Festival have collaborated to present a collection of short films celebrating the human experience -- all created by top film students from Israel and the United States.

The program will be shown twice: on Tuesday, February 23 at the Washington DCJCC, and Thursday, February 25 at the U.S. Navy Memorial. A discussion focusing on the films and their impact on the humanities will follow the screenings.

This event is FREE and open to the public. Reservations are highly recommended -- we will seat reserved seat holders first. Please visit for reservations, film descriptions and photos.

Tuesday, February 23

7:00pm - 9:00pm

The Screening Room at the Washington DCJCC

1529 Sixteenth Street NW

Washington, DC 20036

Thursday, February 25

7:00pm - 9:00pm

U.S. Navy Memorial's Burke Theater

701 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Washington, DC 20004

Tuesday, February 9

The onions have arrived!

Thanks to my wonderful neighbors, I now have two yellow onions. The ten year old who delivered them to my door did not even want to barter- she just wanted me to have her onions. The only thing that could make me happier is another snow day, courtesy of OPM.

Monday, February 8


Sure people barter goods on craigslist and all but I've never had to personally resort to a barter system before...that is until SNOWMAGEDDON 2010.

As you know, onions are the basic ingredient for almost any dish. However we (my husband and I) ran out of onions on Saturday. By Sunday we were out of scallions. Today we finished off our green onions. To be out of onions is a really sad thing. We walked to the Rosslyn Safeway and to our River Place market yesterday but both were completely out of onions. In fact, the Rosslyn Safeway was out of all produce except for wilted kale and rotten brussel sprouts. Shout out to the Former Soviet Union.

Anyway I'm pretty desperate since I can't make proper risotto, beef stew, soup, etc etc etc without onions!

Well I just posted a sign in my apartment to try to barter for onions. I offered Colgate toothpaste in exchange for 3-4 yellow or red onions. Pretty good deal for everyone. I left the toothpaste outside of my door so hopefully I'll wake up and onions will have magically appeared in my hallway!

Wish me luck.

PS you know times are desperate when someone stole the carrot hat off my snowman. I know the produce supply is low and I guess if I came across a snowman with onion eyes I would have taken them too, but it's still kinda sad.

PPS The reason my snowman had a carrot hat was that I was afraid pushing too hard in his nose region would result in his head exploding. The snow texture was not ideal for a snowman on Sunday.

Sunday, February 7


If you wake up congested you may have dust mites in your bed causing your allergies to act up at night. I went to an allergy doctor a few months ago and he suggested I purchase allergy mattress covers and pillow case covers.

I trust costo and went there first to see what they were charging. There it cost $99 for the queen sized mattress cover and two pillow case covers. Before making any purchase I always google the product's name to see if I can find it for less money somewhere else.

It turns out carries the exact same product for $39, plus you can get cash back through

The one I ended up with is the Allergy Comfort Queen 3-piece Allergen Barrier Set. Check it out on here. So far it has made a difference in my morning allergies.

Free pants

If you're watching the 44th Super Bowl, you may have heard that Dockers is giving away thousands of free pants! To enter to win, visit:

Contest ends 2/15/2010.

Be patient. Like the OPM site, Dockers is taking a while to get through to right now.

Wednesday, January 27

Discounted Tickets to the Four of Us

Thinking of going to Theater J at 16th and Q to see The Four of Us? Below is a discount code for $15 tickets. I saw the play last week and it was excellent.

Use this special code – SpreadTheWord – to get $15 tickets to any performance. Just call (800) 494-8497 or click here.

Thursday, January 21

Go Washington!

DC was just ranked the 15th most frugal city by's annual survey.

If only every patriot knew of all the free and fun things to do in Washington, perhaps more freegans would flock here and we'd bump up our standing.

Still, 15th is something to be proud of.

Wednesday, January 20

Restaruant Week- real deals

Not to offend any restaurant week fans but $35/person to go out to eat is no amazing deal. I just learned that Alexandria's restaurant week is a little better since they offer dinner for two people for $35. I still don't think it's great but it's much better than DC's! Plus DC charges 10% for food so you're better off dining in VA anyhow. Don't forgot about or the Entertainment Book to find even better dining out deals.

Monday, January 18

Safeway's Scanning Policy

In the past I've posted about Safeway's policy on over or undercharged items. As you know, if you are under or over charged for an item, you will get it for free.

I recently learned a few new things:

1. If you tell them you were overcharged while you are still in line, they won't honor it. You need to wait until they print the receipt and hand it to you. Then you can go to customer service to get your refund.

2. There is a "limit of one" free product, and you get the rest for the accurate price. I previously thought the limit of one free product meant that if you are over charged for two wheat thins, for example, you only get one free, but that you can get multiple different products for free. However, Safeway HQ says they think the limit of one applies per receipt. The policy doesn't say this, and doesn't provide any additional information. There are obvious ways to get around this ridiculous policy.

3. The policy does not only apply to ads and store signs, it also applies to pin tags, expired club tags/signs, mailers, and checker errors, including misidentified produce. That's important to know since I've had a store deny me free items because they said their policy doesn't guarantee against worker errors, just scanning errors.

4. Very few Safeway employees know about this policy so you need to carry their policy around with you- it's posted below. Print it and stick it in your coupon holder.

5. Their policy states that they will "gladly" refund your money. If they're not "glad" but are "mad" then get their name and write to Safeway.


Dear Ms. Grosser:

Thank you for your recent correspondence regarding your local Safeway store.

You inquired about the Safeway’s policy on overcharges on items. For your convenience, relevant information is provided below:

We guarantee the accuracy of our electronic checkout system. Safeway will give a customer the item free, if the price on their detailed receipt is different (higher or lower) than indicated in ads or shown on the shelf price tag. Limit of one. (The customer will only receive one of the items for free with the remaining items at the correct price).

This does not apply to liquor, tobacco, or fluid milk items. The reason for this is there is a federal tax that must be paid on these items. In these cases the customer would get the item at the sale price instead of free.

In addition to posted shelf tag prices, this commitment to pricing integrity also includes mark down stickers, signs, pin tags, expired club tags/signs, in-store ads, mailers (without posted retractions) and checker errors including misidentified produce. This Accu-Scan Guarantee Policy will be reviewed with all checking personnel. When a pricing discrepancy is brought to a store associate's attention, the cashier will gladly give the item to the customer for free and then promptly notify the person in charge so that the error can be corrected.

Please note: If a customer is overcharged on a BOGO special, not only will they receive the free item, they will receive the overcharged item free as well. Limit of one.

You also expressed your concern regarding the quality of service provided by our associates at the Customer Service Desk and one of our Managers. Thank you for taking the time to bring this matter to our attention. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience you may have experienced. It is not our intention to upset our valued customers, but to provide them with excellent customer service.

Your comments are important to us and have been forwarded to the appropriate department for further review and consideration. Thank you for your patience.

If you would like to discuss this further, please reply to this email or call our toll free number at 1-877-723-3929 and reference contact I.D. 16105281. One of our associates will be happy to assist you.

We appreciate your business and look forward to seeing you soon. Thank you for shopping at Safeway.


Safeway Customer Service Team

Sunday, January 17

Try Foods for Free from Kraft

Sign up here to receive offers for coupons for free Kraft foods. You'll be able to share your thought with their online community afterward. Sign up here.

Saturday, January 16

Let Freedom Ring- Free Tickets to Kennedy Center Concert

On Monday, January 18th, The Kennedy Center is hosting a musical celebration of MLK's legacy. India Arie will be there with the Let Freedom Ring choir, as will Dikembe Mutombo.

Free tickets will be given away starting at 10 AM on the 18th in the Hall of Nations. Each person can get two tickets.

The concert starts at 6 PM in the concert hall.

Thursday, January 14

Free Fitness Convention this Weekend

The NBC4 Health and Fitness Expo is held each January at the Washington Convention Center. The Health Fair provides free health screenings, fun activities and information on products and services that relate to healthy living.

Dates and Times: January 16-17, 2010, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The NBC4 Health and Fitness Expo offers fun activities to motivate you to take charge of your health. Try a new sport such as golf, skiing or dancing. The show includes lots of hands-on activities for all ages.
Visitors donate blood at the NBC4 Health and Fitness Expo.
The NBC4 Health and Fitness Expo has lots of activities to appeal to kids. Scale a rock climbing wall, play Dance Dance Revolution, go virtual skiing and much more.

At the NBC4 Health and Fitness Expo, visitors can try out a variety of exercise machines and new activities. It's a great place to learn about getting and staying fit.

Dance demonstrations are a fun part of the NBC4 Health and Fitness Expo. Check out a variety of dance styles including hip-hop, soul-line dancing, clogging, waltz, square dancing, yoga, belly dancing, jump rope jam and much more.

Saturday, January 9

Harris Teeter is Doubling $1 and $1.50 coupons

As you may know, it's very rare to see coupons over $.99 value doubled now days, especially after Shoppers implemented their new coupon policy. Thus, between now and January 12th marks a special occasion to clip all your $1 and $1.50 coupons and take them to Harris Teeter so they can be doubled!

Please remember just because you have $2 or $3 off doesn't mean it's a good deal.

I only buy things that are free or less than $.50.

Good luck!

Thursday, January 7

National Museum of Crime and Punishment : FREE

Thursday, January 7 from 5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. join crime drama SouthLAnd actor Michael Cudlitz for a meet and greet! Cudlitz will be signing autographs and taking photos with the general public in the main lobby of the National Museum of Crime and Punishment 575 7th Street NW (between E and F Streets). Free admission to the Museum will be granted all day today ONLY to anyone who states the password "SOUTHLAND" at the admissions desk.

Wednesday, January 6

The cheapest contacts around!

I just learned about the site, which has good online reviews, and is so much cheaper than

I just bought 3 pairs of glasses all with anti-scratch, non-reflective lens, one polycarbonate and two regular, AND 20 boxes of contacts (a 2 1/2 to 3 year supply) for a grand total of $404 including shipping and insurance. I can send the glasses back for free if I don't like how they look but they have this great online software where you upload your picture and test the glasses on yourself. I got a $60 discount using the code EBATESNEWYEAR. Good through the end of January.

But that's not all. Because I went to the site through, I am getting 7 percent cash back mailed to me; and because I bought them on my AmEx I will get an additional 1.5 percent unless this counts as a prescription in which case it's an extra 5 percent cash back.

If anyone doesn't have an ebates account, click here to sign up for free.