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Recent Articles

Saturday 02/13/2016
Posted: February 13, 2016 - 12:00 am
Shoptimist: Where to donate old clothes?

The act of decluttering shouldn’t be about pain and loss … it’s really about making room for the things that bring you joy.

Friday 02/12/2016
Posted: February 12, 2016 - 7:30 am
Free health tests at Sam’s Club on Saturday (no membership required)

Sam’s Club wants to keep your heart healthy — and not just because it's Valentine’s Day weekend.

Wednesday 02/10/2016
Posted: February 10, 2016 - 7:15 am
Saturday in Salem: Free baseball and hot dogs (with ‘chilly’)

I’m not sure if baseball mixes with subfreezing temperatures, but if you’re willing to brave the cold, you can score the following freebies this weekend:

Tuesday 02/09/2016
Posted: February 09, 2016 - 7:15 am
College students: Where to get *free* help with your FAFSA

The Great FAFSA Fill Out is happening Saturday, Feb. 13, at Virginia Western Community College in Roanoke.

Monday 02/08/2016
Posted: February 08, 2016 - 7:15 am
Mountain View Humane offers $20 cat spays in February

Both the Roanoke and Christiansburg locations are offering $20 cat spays during the “Beat the Heat” campaign. 

Thursday 02/04/2016
Posted: February 04, 2016 - 12:55 pm
Elizabeth Arden warehouse sale dates for February 2016

After skipping the month of January, the Elizabeth Arden warehouse sale has returned this month in Salem.

Wednesday 02/03/2016
Posted: February 03, 2016 - 7:15 am
Free for kids this weekend: Harry Potter Night, Tons of Fun

Two events stand out from all of the events marked “free” this weekend, and both are happening in southwest Roanoke County.

Monday 02/01/2016
Posted: February 01, 2016 - 7:15 am
3 shopping tips for the next big snowstorm

Did you find yourself trapped in the house last weekend, wishing you had thought to buy (______) in the grocery store frenzy?

Thursday 01/28/2016
Posted: January 28, 2016 - 7:20 am
Second Saturday Divorce Workshops for women now in Roanoke

We interrupt my posts full of deals and feel-good freebies for some news about a difficult topic: Divorce.

Wednesday 01/27/2016
Posted: January 27, 2016 - 7:15 am
In case you flaked: Restaurant week specials continue this weekend

Did Jonas interfere with your Downtown Roanoke Restaurant Week plans?

Tuesday 01/26/2016
Posted: January 26, 2016 - 7:20 am
Where to find Big Red, the beloved Texas soda, in Roanoke

This is the cream soda I remember from my native Texas: Cotton-candy sweet, bright red and so popular that it’s on tap all over the Lone Star State.

Friday 01/22/2016
Posted: January 22, 2016 - 12:56 pm
How to get discounted tickets to Kazim Shrine Circus

Need more clowns in your life?

Wednesday 01/20/2016
Updated: January 20, 2016 - 6:24 pm
J.Crew postpones 4-day warehouse sale in Lynchburg due to snow

Updated Jan. 20: 

Monday 01/18/2016
Posted: January 18, 2016 - 7:45 am
Don't read if hungry: Downtown Roanoke restaurant specials ahead

An impressive lineup of restaurants offer lunch specials and dinner tasting menus during Downtown Roanoke Restaurant Week, which continues through Sunday, Jan. 24. 

Wednesday 01/13/2016
Posted: January 13, 2016 - 7:45 am
Chill out with *free* yoga in downtown Roanoke

If “yoga more often” and “save money” are on your New Year’s resolutions list, you’re in luck.

Tuesday 01/12/2016
Posted: January 12, 2016 - 7:45 am
Purge electronics at free recycling event in Roanoke

Are you cleaning out your house, too?

Monday 01/11/2016
Posted: January 11, 2016 - 7:45 am
What sparks your joy? (And I have some life-changing news)

I plan on reporting on what I learn about decluttering over the next few months. The first big challenge: What to do with all of the discarded stuff?

Tuesday 01/05/2016
Posted: January 05, 2016 - 5:55 pm
Sam's Club offers free health tests Saturday (no membership required)

Resolved to improve your health in 2016?

Monday 01/04/2016
Posted: January 04, 2016 - 1:35 pm
This YMCA deal might get your heart rate up

This is definitely the time to take advantage of gym membership sales; however, don't do what I do: Join and never go. Seriously, our family YMCA membership is a donation at this point.

Thursday 12/24/2015
Posted: December 24, 2015 - 11:05 am
A Christmas miracle for fans of Pie Lady chicken pies

What a wonderful surprise on Christmas Eve!

Tuesday 12/22/2015
Posted: December 22, 2015 - 11:50 am
15 new things from '15 for out-of-towners

Every year my sisters and their husbands return to Roanoke during the week between Christmas and New Year's, and every year I search for cool new things to showcase Roanoke's progress. I've p…

Monday 12/21/2015
Posted: December 21, 2015 - 11:05 am
Deal alert: Rodeo tickets in Salem for $10

Need a last-minute stocking stuffer?

Thursday 12/17/2015
Posted: December 17, 2015 - 7:45 am
Free this weekend: The only snow we might see for awhile

Dickens of a Christmas, the Grinch and plenty of caroling are on the free list.

Tuesday 12/15/2015
Posted: December 15, 2015 - 3:15 pm
Beyond toys: 15 Roanoke experience gifts for kids

Instead of gifting toys, how about making memories?

Monday 12/14/2015
Posted: December 14, 2015 - 2:45 pm
I'm loving these 5 inexpensive coworker gift ideas

Last year, I wrote about the most playful holiday gift I've ever received from a coworker: A tiny jar of Play-Doh.

Posted: December 14, 2015 - 11:45 am
Never gift me this. Ever.

There are some things I dislike for no good reason.

Friday 12/11/2015
Posted: December 11, 2015 - 1:00 pm
Photos: Festive downtown Roanoke storefronts

Thanks to all the merchants who entertain us with imaginative holiday storefronts. I snapped a few photos on a quiet evening in downtown Roanoke. Hearing Nat King Cole's version of "Silent Ni…

Thursday 12/10/2015
Posted: December 10, 2015 - 5:45 pm
Free health tests and flu shots at Rescue Mission on Friday

This is a bit last-minute, but free health screenings — and free flu shots — are available to the public Friday, Dec. 11, at the Rescue Mission in southeast Roanoke.

Posted: December 10, 2015 - 7:45 am
Love the Santa photo opp at Dickens of a Christmas ... but it's NOT free

Bah humbug!

Wednesday 12/09/2015
Posted: December 09, 2015 - 3:05 pm
Use digital coupons from Kroger? Then you'll want to see this

Kroger has rolled out a new website called 25 Merry Days, where you can download special digital coupons each day until Christmas.

Posted: December 09, 2015 - 12:30 pm
5 shopping events you should know about this weekend

Only a couple weeks left until Christmas ... perhaps these local-ish shopping events will help?

Posted: December 09, 2015 - 7:45 am
How to get a free dozen of Krispy Kreme doughnuts

There are just two steps to get free doughnuts at Krispy Kreme on Saturday, December 12, or 12/12 ... the Day of the Dozens.

Tuesday 12/08/2015
Updated: December 08, 2015 - 3:47 pm
Poll: What's the best brownie mix?

It's National Brownie Day ... although I doubt Kroger timed its brownie recall for the occasion.

Posted: December 08, 2015 - 7:45 am
What's a good holiday gift for teachers? Just ask teachers

I'm so grateful for the women of Roanoke Mommies Online, a group on Facebook that offers lots of support to new moms, including pediatrician reviews, best places for inexpensive birthday parties .....

Monday 12/07/2015
Posted: December 07, 2015 - 2:10 pm
Is Aldi cheaper than Walmart?

Aldi offers 'drastically cheaper' prices than Walmart, according to a price check by Business Insider.

Updated: December 08, 2015 - 10:29 am
Purrrfect gift ideas: Meet-and-greets with Cesar Millan, Daniel Tiger

Two new civic center shows popped up Monday, both offering meet-and-greet opportunities. Is there a super fan on your gift list?

Friday 12/04/2015
Updated: December 04, 2015 - 11:55 am
Pssst ... this Aldi cookie dough tastes homemade

Update (11:50 a.m.): An Aldi associate reports these have sold out in Roanoke. * Sad trombone *

Thursday 12/03/2015
Posted: December 03, 2015 - 11:20 am
Prep the halls! J.Crew warehouse sale in Lynchburg before Christmas

Good news if you'd like to gift J.Crew this holiday season.

Posted: December 03, 2015 - 7:45 am
Free weekend events begin with Dickens of a Christmas

This is my favorite week of the holiday season ... when the decorations are fresh and before the endless Christmas music and cookies outstay their welcome.

Wednesday 12/02/2015
Updated: December 02, 2015 - 3:31 pm
Have you shopped the Bizarre Bazaar in Richmond?

I first heard about the Bizarre Bazaar through my Facebook friends, and I fell in love with the name immediately. 

Posted: December 02, 2015 - 1:00 pm
Elizabeth Arden warehouse sale dates for December 2015

Holiday shoppers: We have the December dates for the Elizabeth Arden warehouse sale in Salem.

Posted: December 02, 2015 - 11:15 am
What's the best Hokie gift to welcome football coach Justin Fuente?

Usually, my holiday challenge is buying a novel Hokie gift for my father-in-law, who already owns everything in Virginia Tech colors.

Tuesday 12/01/2015
Posted: December 01, 2015 - 2:00 pm
Where can I buy a Mill Mountain Star ornament?

This question was just asked today in one of my Facebook groups.

Updated: December 09, 2015 - 5:23 pm
Where to get photos with Santa (most are free)

Grab your cameras: The list of free photo opps with Santa is here again.

Monday 11/30/2015
Updated: November 30, 2015 - 12:53 pm
The coolest Cyber Monday sale in Roanoke is ...

Half-price annual memberships to the Roanoke Pinball Museum.

Tuesday 11/24/2015
Updated: December 22, 2015 - 12:32 pm
Show your love for Roanoke with these experience gift ideas

I love Roanoke.

Monday 11/23/2015
Posted: November 23, 2015 - 12:27 pm
A reader asks: Who will fry my turkey? We have an answer ...

You still have time to pay someone else to fry your Thanksgiving turkey.

Thursday 11/19/2015
Posted: November 19, 2015 - 12:15 pm
Shoptimist: My finds at the Aldi opening

Curious about what you'll find at Aldi? Roanoke's newest grocery store opened Thursday, Nov. 19, in the former Books-A-Million space on Hershberger Road. The German chain is known for its lo…

Wednesday 11/18/2015
Posted: November 18, 2015 - 6:15 pm
Aldi opening, RIOT Rooster among weekend shopping events

Shopping is the story this weekend.

Posted: November 18, 2015 - 10:55 am
Coldwater Creek closeout sale coming to Roanoke hotel

The stores are gone, but you can still buy Coldwater Creek fashion at a special sale in Roanoke County this weekend.

The Shoptimist
Stephanie Ogilvie

I'm a bargain-hunting mom who values time as much as money. Read more about my favorite stores and shopping style. Share your questions, tips and story ideas at I'm on Twitter, too: @smogilvie.

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