Thursday, March 18, 2010

Everyone Needs an ALICE!

Seriously!  Everyone needs Alice!  Remember (okay some of you may not remember but work with me here), remember watching the Brady Bunch on tv?  Alice was the maid.  The glue that held them together.  She did everything.  Ran to the butcher (like she didn't have ulterior motives there! ;) SAM!), she did the grocery shopping, the laundry, the cooking, the tutoring of the kids with their homework probably.  How easy life was with Alice.

Well, after some surfing I found Alice! And let me tell you, she is amazing!  This is my big secret I was anxious to share with you all!  Alice is the latest and greatest thing for moms and their shopping!  You pick out anything and everything you need, fill your cart (lots of items have coupons available even!), and check out.  There is NO SHIPPING charges with Alice.  Everything ships for FREE!  There are household items for every room of the house.  As long as it's a non-perishable, it's available!  At a lot less than shopping cost!  And did I mention it ships for FREE!!!!

On Sunday evening I decided to give Alice a try.  I didn't want to go overboard not knowing what to expect so I just ordered seven items we needed.  Sunday evening!  My order shipped Monday morning via UPS and by Wednesday afternoon this is what I had on my patio
I wanted to check out every aspect of Alice before sharing her and let you see all the details of this experience (plus, it's just fun to take pictures!) lol.   So, 5 stars for attractive packaging.

I opened my box to find that it was packed with some awesome bubble wrap to keep my items from shifting, busting, etc.
My son always thinks every package that comes should be something for him and of course had to stick his nose (and Doritoes face) in my photos
All of my liquid items were sealed with tape across the tops so they wouldn't pop open and leak, plus they were inside a ziploc bag in case they did (can you say recycle! I love ziploc bags).
(please excuse the mess on my dining room table.  I'm sure mine is not the only one that becomes a catch-all at the end of the day).

Now.... Alice is looking pretty good.  Great packaging, name brand items (which was my daughter's first concern since part of it was hair products for her), and did I mention FREE shipping?!  Plus, three of my items had coupons available so my coupon savings was $1.60.  Not too shabby.  Sometimes I buy items just because I have a coupon or they are on sale.  Hence the Dial soap.  Cuz I'm not a Dial fan, but it was on sale.

So, then I decided that if I'm really going to make sure Alice gets the credit she deserves I needed to do some comparison shopping.  I went to three stores in my town.  Hy-Vee, Pamida, and Dollar General.  I can hear some of you now saying, why not Wal Mart?  Hello!  I would LOVE to have a Wal Mart where we live, but unfortunately it's a one hour round trip to get to the nearest Wal Mart.  Another reason Alice gets my vote.  I'm saving time, gas and extra money I would spend impulse shopping for things I DO NOT NEED when I step into the $100 store Wal Mart.  We call it the $100 store because you can't go in and come back out without spending at least $100 everytime.  I do not need that!

I know the store clerks thought I was nuts so I made up a little fib that I was working on a project and had to do some comparison shopping, could I pick up seven items, have them ring them up and provide me with a receipt.  "What class is this for?"  Ummm....  an economics class!  Yeah, that's it!  HOME economics!  LOL

I wanted you all to know for sure that I got exactly the same items, so I took more pictures!  Yes, I'm the nut you saw in the store taking pictures in the deodorant aisle!  :)

So, here's my breakdown:

Dial Round the Clock Gold (3 bars)       $2.12  $0.35 off = $1.77
Dawn Dish Liquid (10 oz)                      $1.49  $0.25 off = $1.24
Degree Summer Rain Deodorant                                         $2.96
Head & Shoulders Dry Scalp                 $4.93  $1.00 off = $3.93
Herbal Essence Smoothing Cream                                       $3.69
Herbal Essence Shampoo                                                    $3.45
Reach Toothbrush                                                               $0.90
       TAX                                                                            $1.40
Making my grand TOTAL (w/FREE SHIPPING!)            $19.34

Less than $20 bucks folks!  I was a bit impressed.  Then I went shopping.... and was thoroughly blown away!

PAMIDA (Our version of Wal Mart in our podunk town)
Dial Gold (3 bars)                                                              $3.49
Dawn Dish soap (they didn't have same size so I got           $3.49
the cheapest available Dawn)
Degree                                                                              $3.49
Head & Shoulders Dry Scalp                                             $6.49
Herbal Essence Cream (NOT AVAILABLE!)                   OUCH
Herbal Essence Shampoo                                                  $4.29
Reach toothbrush                                                               $3.29
     TAX                                                                             $1.90
Making my grand TOTAL (MISSING ONE ITEM)         $26.44
     That's $7.10 MORE than Alice!

HY-VEE was next (I don't usually shop for these things at the grocery store but hey...)
Dial Gold (3 bars)                                $2.19 $0.20 off = $1.99
Dawn                                                                               $1.97
Degree (didn't have the 'scent' we use)                              $3.12
Head & Shoulders                                                            $5.78
Herbal Essence cream (NOT AVAILABLE)                    OUCH
Herbal Essence Shampoo (different kind)                         $3.83
reach toothbrush (didn't have, got cheapest brand)            $1.88
    TAX (we figured approximate due to voided receipt)    $1.43
Making my grand TOTAL (MISSING ONE ITEM)       $20.00
     That's only $0.66 more than Alice but we didn't get what we wanted and items we use weren't even available!

Now, Dollar General was my last shot.  I've shopped there.  I knew there might be skeptics that would say, well you need a dollar store!  NOT!  Most of those stores charge you more because they sell in dollar increments and people don't even realize they are spending more.  But, I knew it was worth the look see!

Dial Soap (3 bars - wrong scent)                                      $2.10
Dawn dish soap                                                                $1.45
Degree (wrong scent again-hey teenagers are picky!)        $2.50
Head & Shoulders                                                            $5.00
Herbal Essence Cream (NOT AVAILABLE....AGAIN)
Herbal Essence Shampoo                                                $3.25
Toothbrush (different brand - cheapest kind)                    $1.75

All the other hair cream frizz static products were averaging $3.00
     TAX                                                                          $1.47
Making the grand TOTAL                                             $20.52
     That's $0.18 more than Alice.  Not bad.
Now, the only downfall I can see to Alice is if you're an instant gratification kind of person.  Waiting that two days to do your shopping could put some people in a bit of a predicament if you are out of toilet paper or something!  lol  :)

So, I'm going to become a 'planner' and do my shopping with Alice.  Not only does she save me money (heck the trip to Wal Mart would have cost me $10 in gas alone!)...

I can shop while the kids are in bed asleep.

I don't have to get out and drive through this
Yeah, I know... looks real busy huh?!  I live in the middle of nowhere people!

and this....(the road to the middle of nowhere from my house)

or pay for this....

and I can enjoy a whole lot more of this...
(that's sunshine folks!!!  It's been rare in these parts!)
and a whole lot more of THIS....

So check it out!!! 

You'll be glad you did!

1 comment:

  1. Very Cool you nut! I can see you in the grocery store and Pamida and Dollar General doing this! Too funny! Oh, and is that Brad Whitney's van fixin' to go over the bridge?! LOL!
    I'm gonna give Alice a try! I agree that it's got to be better than the $100 store!