Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Bahamas! A Picture Post

Here are some a lot of pictures from our recent trip to the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas. It was beautiful and somewhere that we probably would never have gone at our own expense (the least expensive room rate was about $400 per night and this is not an all inclusive type place so everthing was pricey). We were there for 4 nights which was just right. We were ready to come home at the end, especially since Evie was back here with grandma and grandpas. She did awesome too - no separation anxiety at all!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

I Am The Queen of Craigslist! (aka, I got the BEST deal EVER!)

Miss Evie has been talking a lot lately about wanting a dollhouse and doll family. There was one conversation that went something like this:
Evie: I want a neighborhood of dollhouses
Me: They take up a lot of room so we would have to get rid of some of your toys
Evie: we can get rid of ALL of my toys
Me: you would let me get rid of all of your toys if you got a neighborhood of dollhouses?
Evie: yes

Needless to say, we won't be getting a whole neighborhood of dollhouses but I was excited to start looking for what to get for her and maybe do it for Christmas. I was really wanting to get a wood one instead of plastic so I started looking at Melissa and Doug and Plan Toys for starters to see prices and options. Here are some of my favorites!

And my list could go on and on! There are so many adorable dollhouses available if you are willing to spend the money. Once you have the dollhouse, the room sets or doll sets are all between $15 and $20 on average so you can really put some money into it! Just look at the cute little sets!

Well, lets just say that wood dollhouses are not cheap! And if I'm anything, its frugal, so it is quite painful for me to pay full price for anything, especially when that means over $100 before any dolls or furnishings! So, I went to my trusty and did my search there... it was better but still a lot more than I would prefer to pay. So on a whim, I did a search for dollhouse in Craigslist...

Most of the listings were for the plastic ones, which I didn't eliminate right away but then I found one that was almost 3 weeks old and just said "make an offer" with a picture like this:

I sent an email to see if it was still available and then started trying to find out which brand it was and how much it cost new... I was stuck because I only found the Melissa and Doug furnished house 

and this Plan Toys My First Dollhouse
But, there was just something different about the house design... I had gotten to the point that I was thinking it might have been an older year model and then somehow a search on brought up some new wood dollhouse accessories and so I went looking and found the exact house! Its Ryan's Room brand. I had never even heard of it! Well, it retails for $135.99 and I saw it as low as about $88 on amazon. During this time I had gotten an email back saying they still had the dollhouse, and to please make an offer to get it out of her house! So, I made an offer of $10 and I totally thought she would say she didn't want to go that low (I know I wouldn't have!) but to my surprise, she said that was fine and what day could I pick it up!
So that right there was just a crazy amazing deal, but my story is not over yet ;)
Well, Monday night we drove down to pick it up and as we are going to the garage she says "Oh and I found another piece... it is 3 levels now." Um, WHAT?! She had forgotten this piece below:

This add on piece with garage and more rooms and stairs retails for 69.99 so I was thinking, great she's leading up to telling me she wants more money for it... so I ask if $10 is still okay and she says yes, just get it out of my house. YIPPEE! But I totally understand too, because no lie, this thing is HUGE! All stacked up it is almost 3 feet tall and over 2 and 1/2 feet wide! Just look!

So, for now Evie doesn't know about it and I managed to hide it in the garage because it does need aired out a bit and wiped down from being stored. I am wrestling between giving it to her right away or TRYING to wait until Christmas (yes, I know that is 8 months away) and stocking up on the dolls and furnishings bit by bit until then...