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Month of April , 2010

Starbucks French Roast - The Coffee I Hate To Love

Reated Blog: 
Ruta Maya® Organic Cubita® Coffee Dark Roast - Better than Starbucks

I don't go to Starbucks Coffee.  I go to Starbucks Coffee only when I meet customers or when I have a date.

I don't like people at Starbucks Coffee - they all seem snotty and hard to deal with.  They all seem to drive SUVs and watch foreign movies with subtitles. Their faces seem to tell me "I'm better than you".

I hate the words "Bartista" "Venti" "Grande", etc..  I never once used those words in real life.  I always use terms such as "Regular" or "Large".  I refuse to say "Venti".

Last few years, I struggled to find good coffee that will replace Starbucks.  I have tried many different brands of coffee.  The only good coffee was Peet's Coffee.  I believe Peet's Coffee is definitely better than Starbucks Coffee.  I love Major Dickason's Blend.  But they are expensive.  I buy Peet's coffee occasionally as special treat.

Costco periodically sends out $4.50 coupon for 2.5lb bag of Starbucks' French Roast.  This coupon brings price down to $15.49.  It's an incredible bargain that I cannot refuse.

I have 2 coffee grinders.  One grinder (pictured right) is dedicated to Starbucks' French Roast only, so I don't mix flavors with other coffees.

I have tasted many different coffees.

At the end, Starbucks Coffee is the best coffee.  And Costco makes it possible for me to afford them.  (Another reason why I love Costco)

Sometimes I buy 2 bags and save $9.00 with the coupon.

I hate to love Starbucks Coffee.  But I love it.

Kirkland Signature's Papua New Guinea coffee is equally good.  They are bigger and cheaper (3lb for $13.89).  They are amazing.  It's a little mild, but not too mild.  I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of people favor this coffee over Starbucks'.  I highly recommend Kirkland Signature's Papua New Guinea coffee.


Reated Blog: 
Ruta Maya® Organic Cubita® Coffee Dark Roast - Better than Starbucks


Costco Shopping - Lunch Time - With 2 Coworkers

* 14th Costco Shopping this year, 3rd time this month.

I asked my 2 coworkers if they wanted to go with me to Costco on lunch time.  Surprisingly both of them said yes.

I returned vitamin D3 (story behind vitamin D3)

I bought what's absolutely needed.  Nothing special went on today.

And we all had Costco hot-dog for lunch.

I went to Costco mainly to purchase laundry detergent & fabric softener.  I was getting itchy all over my body.  I had to try "no fragrance, no dye" products and see how things improve.  I hope they will stop my itch.

These detergent/softer may be good for environment & gentle for my skin.  But, they took away that fresh linen smell on my laundry.  I would really like to have that fresh smell back. Hm... :(

Picture Album of Oxnard Costco - Car Wash Construction

Costco car was is coming up in Oxnard, California

You can check out construction progress from the album


Costco Shopping - April 23, 2010, With a Friend

* 13th Costco Shopping this year, 2nd time this month.

I went to Costco with a friend.  So, I didn't get the chance to take pictures the way I wanted.

My receipt shows $108.79 but we went half and half on some item.  Also, I bought vitamin D3 that I am planning to return with my old receipt.  So, I spent less than $100.00.

I didn't have to buy gas.

Coupons saved $21.00

I love Laughing Cow cheese.  It was my first time tasting Laughing Cow Cheese (thanks for $2.00 coupon).

My Friend:
My friend is an elementary school teacher trying to lose weight.  That's why you see 100 calories snack bars & some silly candies.  Low-left corner is her multi-pack of cat food.


Sign of Getting Old - Flowers

Another sign of getting old

First time in my life..... I bought flowers to decorate my place.

Check out my poor-man's dining set.

I hate to replace them.  I love my apartment, and I enjoy living here a lot.  But, I just don't feel the need to spend money on this apartment.

3 (small) Financial Failures

These are my three recent financial failures.  My total loss was about $10.00.  But, this bothered me enough that I had to share this story here.

  1. Coffee Filter: I bought these coffee filters.  A week later, I bought a new coffee machine just to realize that my new coffee machine takes different kind of filter. (I love my new coffee machine, by the way).
  2. Pepper: This jar of peppers has a built in grinder.  You can't beat this price ($3.99).  Anyway, I used the grinder too rough one day.  I broke the grinding mechanism.  So, I had to buy another one.
  3. Vitamin D3: I paid regular price 2 weeks ago.  A week later, I received a $3.00 coupon from Costco. 

On all these cases, packages were already opened and I had nobody but myself to blame.  Even though Costco is likely to make refund, my conscience didn't allow me to take them back.

I have to be more careful, that's all.  Embarassed
Anyway, I am out $10.00 and this bothers me somewhat.  Hm...


I bought vitamin D3 with a coupon, then returned it with the old receipt.

Costco Shopping - April 10, 2010

* 12th Costco Shopping this year, 1st time this month.

Shrimp cocktail was for my guest.

I am happy with Papua New Guinea coffee from Kirkland Signature. This 3lb bag was only $13.89.  This coffee is a bit milder than Starbucks' French roast.  I can smell a hint of "Earth" on this coffee.  The beans are shiny with fresh coat of oil.

One lady told me "This coffee will be gone in no time"

I was sick a few weeks ago, so I was out of DayQuil.

I'm still doing good with money.

Money Lost:
I bought a pack of coffee filter less than a month ago.  Then I bought a brand new coffee maker a few weeks ago.  This coffee maker takes different kind of coffee filter.  So, I had to buy more coffee filters.  I lost $2.79 here.

I'm going to bring old coffee filters to my work. Mm..

Costco Coupons - April 15, 2010

They are here...

I see $3.00 coupon for vitamin D3. 
Ah~!!  I just bought that exact vitamin 2 weeks ago.
$3.00... I am sick to my stomach.

Price Comparison - Jarlsberg Cheese

When in doubt, buy Costco.

Check this out.  I bought 2.25lb Jarlsberg cheese at Costco.  After$2.50 coupon, the final price was $7.60

Then I went to xxxx supermarket and found the exact same cheese.  It was $7.53 for 0.58lb.

Do you see the power of Costco?  With same amount of money, I got 4 times more cheese.

2.25lb of cheese comes out to be $29.23 at the Supermarket.  But I only paid $7.60 at Costco.  This is ridiculous (in a good way).

Things like this remind me why I love Costco.
It's good to have Costco in my team.

Costco Jarlsberg CheeseUnit price $4.49/lb at Costco

Jarlsberg Cheese Supermarket
Unit Price $12.99/lb at a Supermarket

Sign of Getting Old - LA Freeway

Another sign of getting old

Took place Saturday, March 27, 2010

I just finished a personal gig at Los Angeles and was on my way back to Ventura County.  I was on 101 Fway in Los Angeles County.  The Sun was setting in front of me.  I was minding my own business.

Then one slow moving BMW cut me off and started to clean his windshield with soapy water.  I was hit by his fluid.  That got me so angry.

I've been driving for 20+ years and I have a perfect driving record.

All my life, when somebody washes windshield in front of me, I would always cut him off and give him the same treatment.  That rich buger in BMW was going to get it.

I was ready to pay him back. I took my time and waited for the right moment.  LA traffic is heavy.

I followed him for about 4-5 minutes, and I got the perfect setting for me to cut him off in offensive manner and give him the squirt of justice.

I changed into the fast lane and started to pass him.

Then I took a look at the driver.

He was a young dude. 

I could clearly see that he was struggling to see in front of him through the glare caused by setting Sun in front of us.

The poor guy was only trying to clean his windshield so he can see better.

At that moment, I felt ashamed that I thought about paying back to this guy.

Using windshield wiper while driving is an annoying act.  But, people use windshield wiper because they try to see better.  They don't think about people behind you.  All they have in mind is "Oh my God, I cannot see"

Some people don't realize that people behind them will get hit by their washer fluid.  They are simply clueless, just like my parents.  They don't mean anything bad.

I believe my days of "pay back" is over.  I'm getting old.

I hope the dude in BMW reached his destination OK.

Painful Itch - For Major Costco Shopping / Air Purifier

* 11th Costco Shopping this year, 4th time this month.

* Blog Originally posted March 3, 2010 - Than updated March 31, 2010

I've been doing very good with money for last 2 months.

Now I have an itch to shop. 

I cannot fight this urge, I think I have reached my limit of holding back.

I need to find something that justifies my spending.  Something that's expensive but good for me.

I am heading out to

Oh boy.  Wish me luck~! (writing from work)

Update: I ordered an air purifier at  Spent $432.99.  Picture coming up.  Itch is gone... for now.

Update: Package arrived at my work exactly 1 week later.

Blueair Air Purifier from Costco
I am generally healthy.  But, I had one (1) asthma attack about 10 years ago.  That was a scary episode I will never forget.  It was very difficult to breath that my head was spinning.  I don't know why and how I had asthma attack.  Maybe it was the pets, maybe it was because my room was dusty.  At that time, I was poor and didn't have insurance, so I took some over the counter medication and gutted it out for 1-2 days. (very stupid if I look back).

I had no problem with breathing since then.  Like I said, I am generally healthy.

Then for last 2-3 months, I felt subtle difficulty of breathing.  It was not bad, not even close to my previous episode.  It was very subtle, but still scary.

So, I went all out and bought an expensive air purifier from Costco (online).  I got $100.00 instant discount.  Total price was $432.99 with free delivery. 

To make long story short - my breathing problem is no more.  And this also took care of my itch to shop.  I am happy with my purchase.

* In February, I bought this $433 air purifier and still managed to save 66% of my take-home pay.  So, I am really doing good with money. 

Costco Air Purifier Blueair
After Work - Taking Air Purifier to Home

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