Killin' It With The Kuhns

Striving For Success In Everything We Do!

Here in the states we’re a little over a week into the government’s request for voluntairy quarintine. Employees are asking workers who can to work from home, schools are closed down and groups of 10 or less is the guidelines for those who may want to get together.

With the popularity of bars and restaurants, Spring Break in full swing and graduations on the horizon, it may seem to some like no one could possibly find anything positive about social distancing. But my guess is that there are also a large number of people who find this opportunity to be more than welcome.

To be honest, my life has changed very little since we’ve been asked to seperate and the ways it has changed, so far, seems pretty positive. For starters, I’m not much of a morning person, which can make the fact that I don’t have to leave the house at 7 am to drop my child off at school seem like a bonus. (We have shorter school years with longer days, which require our children to be sitting in class at 7:30 am).

Weddings, graduations, and birthday parties? Let’s be honest, how many people, introverts or social butterflies, honestly want to attend such ceremonies? Sure, if the part of birthday boy/girl, graduate, or bride or groom is being filled by your child or another close family member, you definitely want to be there. But if that’s not the case, the honest among us would smile and admit to ourselves that self-isolation measures are the perfect excuse to forego these undesired occasions. ‘But surely no one goes to weddings who really doesn’t want to be there!’ You may think. For anyone who thinks that, I offer a challenge: Encourage the couple to offer a free mini-bar during the reception, then announce after all the RSVP’s have arrived that the bar will no longer be offered. You might be amazed to find many of the guests who had stated they would attend are suddenly sick, have to work, or have another emergency that makes it simply impossible to commit to their previous promise.

People who hate hugs? Hate handshaking? We’d be kidding ourselves to think they are at all miserable living in a world where those who are obsessed with social contact have their hands temporarily bound.

So while we all look forward to the days we will be able to once again move about freely, there are probably more than a few among us who are savoring this rare opportunity of late mornings, isolation, messy houses, sweats, tangled hair, and a hands off approach. As the author of this post, I admit I am one of them 🙂 .

Recently I went to a new page on Facebook hoping to win a T-shirt that was being given away. While there, I happened to glance at the bar on the right where ‘Suggested Groups’ were listed. There, I found a page that was dedicated to ‘Dollar General Penny Shopping’. Thinking that it was a page devoted to how one might save some serious money on shopping trips at DG, I decided to join, only to find that it was something entirely different.

It seems that when merchandise is to be removed from the stores, that the price of those items typically default to a penny on a certain price list. It is then up to the associates to review the list and go around the store, pulling these items from inventory. If you’re a savvy or just plain lucky penny shopper, you may be fortunate enough to land some of these items in your cart before they are pulled….and store policy says that if you make it to the register with the items, they are to be sold to you for a penny without argument.

One participant shared this image of her penny hauls from one day of treasure hunting. Yes, each item you see here cost her a penny.

If you liken Penny Shopping to a game, it’s clear that there are some major winners and plenty of losers. While many who make attempts have random success, it seems the key to being a major winner is being lucky enough to be in a store where two factors come together. The first factor is visiting a store where the penny list (usually found at several different websites) actually matches the products in the store. For example, this week’s list included a variety of ice creams….half pints of Edy’s and Haagen Daz, for example. Dozens of page members posted their hauls…usually at least a cart full, if not two, and bemoaning the massive amounts they had to leave behind due to lack of freezer space. As for me, I visited my local store and found these exact same ice creams on the shelf, which all showed that they would ring up at full price.0

The second factor in a successful haul seems to be finding yourself in one of these lucky penny shops that also happens to have a manager who isn’t exactly persistent in moving old merchandise from the shelves. Some participants report managers who seemed glad to let the merchandise leave at a penny, while others have reported having managers literally step in front of them when they approached certain merchandise, only to begin removing it and saying ‘I’m just doing my job’.

I’ve tried my luck on a couple of trips but haven’t had much success so far. I was just about to conclude it all had to be some sort of farce until I encountered my first penny item, the sets of Frozen II hair and bag accessories that were originally priced at $5.00, shown below. I picked up all 5 of the remaining packs because, as the page explains, once management discovers there are penny items on the shelf, they will remove any remaining supply. They will make good prizes for our game booth at the free city park event in our community next Christmas.

If you decide to try out this method, look up ‘Penny Shopping’ on YouTube or Facebook to find plenty of sites with insider tips. Also, download the Dollar General Shopping App on Your Phone. Once the app is downloaded and you go to the first store to make an attempt, make sure that store is set as your ‘preferred store’ on your app. Then use the scanner under the ‘list’ section (not the shopping section) to start scanning bar codes and see if you get lucky. (not sure why this makes a difference, but it does).

Other than what’s on the published list, check clearance areas to see if penny items might exist. Other things to look out for are seasonal items (if it’s two months past Christmas, for example, and you run across a random ‘Santa’ themed bath and body set or a gingerbread kit, there’s a good chance it could scan at a penny) and things that look ‘out of place’ on high shelves. Most stores go by the theory that no one looks up, and these shelves are often used by store personnel as temporary areas to hold discontinued items until they can get around with a cart to remove them.

If you should decide to give this a try and ultimately have any luck, let me know in the comments section what you’ve found!

There’s a saying that goes ‘If you want to experience all four seasons in one day, then visit Georgia’. While those of us who live here know that this statement is 100% true, it’s also true that the words ‘day’ and ‘week’ can be used interchangeably.

Such was the case recently during the week of February 2, where local residents found themselves wearing sweaters some days and, on other days, digging into the back corners of their closets for flip-flops and T’s.

After a relatively warm beginning, things began to change on Wednesday after we received almost 4 inches of rain on Tuesday during the day and overnight hours. While temperatures hadn’t dropped yet, the kids were still able to enjoy a day off from school since several flooded roads left driving conditions too treacherous to attempt a trip.

On Thursday, the water had mostly receded and weather reports throughout the week had left us thinking that only cooler weather could be expected to carry us into the weekend, but then, meterologists began to change their story.

Of course snow forecasts in the South are always hit or miss. I’ve seen forecasts that called for four inches of snow that produced nothing, and others that called for flurries and produced four inches.

Saturday was a prime example on the difficulty in predicting snow fall. As the admins of a community page, Scott and I usually hit the road and offer a live video whenever we see snow, so our friends and neighbors who don’t want to brave the elements can ride along and enjoy the scenery. The beautiful snow scene above, courtesy of about 2 inches of snow, was captured in one part of our county while a mere 5 miles away………….

….one of our community members sent a photo of her residence, showing that there was no evidence of a winter event at all!

In true Georgia fashion, by evening all evidence of snowfall had gone away and temperatures began to warm up again. Now, less than one week following the flooding/snow event, we’ve had additional flooding and severe storms are expected tonite, followed by blustery temperatures with daytime lows in the 20’s.

How has the weather been this winter in your neck of the woods? Let me know by leaving a comment in the comments section!

Colonel Harlan Sandars of KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken) Fame appearing in a New Castle, Indiana Parade in 1972

Ok it’s not a dance or even electric, but something that can bring just as much enjoyment to those who appreciate such things…..viewing photo slides from decades ago.

In a world where pictures can be taken and viewed in an instant (and just as instantly discarded) it can be hard to imagine living in a time where a picture meant the purchase of film, flash bars and waiting a week or more to see if it had all been worth it. Yet up until everyone had the latest smart phone in their pocket getting good pictures was a hit or miss, and either way a costly endeavor that left most cameras collecting dust until a holiday or other special event encouraged us to pull them from their hiding places.

Which is why finding and viewing photo slides can be an exciting and entertaining pastime. If you’re like me and your family didn’t particularly indulge in capturing memories, either through lack of funds or interest, then a lucky find at a local estate sale can help fulfill the void.

Salmon Being Dried For Dog Food in Alaska

We recently acquired a slide windfall at a local estate sale, guesstimating that we collected in excess of 5000 slides. If you’re like a relative of mine, you might wonder what enjoyment anyone could get from looking at another persons slides. Well, if you’re lucky enough to stumble upon a the collection like the one we received, you’ll find that many weren’t of everyday people at all, but places, planes, cars, landscapes and lifestyles that cease to exists anywhere except in the memories of a select few and in photographs such as these. Two such examples I displayed in the photos above: Colonel Harlan Sandars, who passed away in 1980, can be seen participating in a 1972 parade, and in the other slide, salmon being hung to dry before it is eventually turned into dog food. While this seemed it was part of the everyday for one native Alaskan family back in the 1960’s, it leaves the viewer wondering: Are practices such as this still in existence in Alaska today, or have they forgone this method in favor of more modern solutions?

Picking up slides at an estate sale can be a hit or miss. You might luck up and find a collection that can be enjoyed by anyone, or you might just get a glimpse of the everyday anctics of a famly that lived long ago, but either way, I encourage you to pick them up as, in the end, you shouldn’t be out anything. With luck, you’ll find hidden treasures (such as the rare image of Colonel Sanders, shown at the top) or at worse, you’ll find nothing but can dispose of them through a listing on Ebay (slides are often used for various creations by crafters). And because slides are considered personal items, they are often overlooked by even the most knowledgeable estate sale buyers, meaning you can usually pick them up for next to nothing.

Are you a fan of old photos? Or do you enjoy picking up other types of items that the majority seem to pass by? I’d love to read about your likes/experiences in the comments section!

I live in a beautiful quiet place.   It’s the type of place many from cities like Atlanta and those living in Florida rush to when vacation means a trip to the serene mountains.  While we love our hometown, things can sometimes get a little too quiet for the locals….especially by way of having things to do and places to go when we’re ready for a little restaurant or retail therapy. 

That’s why many were especially excited when a new local Grill opened this week in our community.  Now if you’re from a larger city or even a mid-sized town that might have a mall, a large variety store like a Wal-Mart, or some mom and pop grills mixed in with the bigger offerings such as Longhorn Steakhouse or Chili’s, a little grill might not even seem worth writing about. But in a town that national sit-downs chains seem to avoid like the plague, where our only sit-down options include a variety of ‘meat and three’, more than our fair share of Mexican restuarants, and a worth-the-drive-from anywhere Italian restaurant, a new option is most welcome indeed. This restaurant introduced a few new options for sit down dining in our community….fish and chips, sirloin steaks, fried pickles, fried mushrooms and a new and interesting ‘knife and fork’ dog. Because these new choices were available along with some other typical offerings, such as burgers, pizza and chicken fingers citizens, for the first time, finally have an option to go to a restaurant where everyone is going to find something they enjoy without the former necessary drive of 30 minutes or more.

We took advantage of opening day to check the place out.  While we went in with low expectations (after all a new restaurant has a new waitstaff, new cooks creating new dishes, and it just takes everyone some time to grow into the job so that things run efficiently) we were pleasantly surprised.  Scott, who usually goes for fish and chips whenever it’s on the menu, reported that it was some of the best fish and chips he’d ever tasted.  I myself usually head for the burgers, and I certainly couldn’t complain.  Other diners could be hear raving about the food themselves and, because this is a small town, we knew quite a few of them, which allowed for me to be able to take some pictures of their plates:

Spinach and Pimento Cheese Dips

Salad with seared Salmon

What the restaurant calls the ‘Fork and Knife’ Dog

Some pita bread chips and pork skins (both made on site) for those yummy dips.

It’s not the first time a ‘steak’ restaurant or grill has made a go of our hometown, but all the others have come and gone.  This, however, I have hope for.  The owners have owned a local pizza establishment for 31 years, and this is a second location to which they are bringing their tried and true menu while also offering all of these new and unique dishes.  That combined with the fact that one of them recently attended a chef’s school in Atlanta specifically to learn how to prepare some of these dishes, it’s a good bet that this one might just be around to stay.

Do you also live in a small town where getting restaurant and retail establishments can be a challenger? Or do you have one or two local dives that are considered a best kept secret? Share your story with me in the comments section!

Hello there and thanks for visiting my page.  My name is Holly. (Bet that comes as a big shock to you, right? ;)) I’m a lifelong Southern gal who’s a wife to my husband, Scott, a businessman, sports enthusiast and photographer, mother to my daughter, Hayleigh, a college student currently majoring in Business Management with aspirations to attend film school, and mother to my son, Tucker, who is a high school senior and will graduate in the Spring of this year.  He enjoys vintage cars, dressing up in medieval knight costumes, and time spent with his girlfriend.  I am also blessed to be a next door neighbor to my mother, Joyce, a retired accountant who now spends her time travelling wherever time and money will take her.

I am not a first time blogger. I run a community Facebook events page for my hometown and, in conjunction, maintained a blog page for a couple of years where I went more in depth about local events and community history. But as with most small towns events can get few and far between, especially during certain times of year when we’re not close to any major holidays. I found myself struggling to keep the page active and interesting with what, at times, could be very little information. As a result what began as something that I thought would be a fun pastime morphed into something somewhat stressful…it made me feel like a newspaper editor with a deadline and no story to tell. Though I had much I would have loved to write about, such as telling stories related to our photography business, activities enjoyed with the family, a craft I was creating, or a recipe I was trying, these ideas didn’t ‘fit in’ with the page. So in 2019 I quietly deleted it and spend some time trying to decide what I could blog about next.

In the end I decided to do what it seems most others do, create a blog about my life, a blog that focuses on myself, my family and my town… events, recipes, crafts, photography adventures and more.

I’m glad you’re thinking about coming along on this crazy ride of mine and I hope you’ll consider sticking around! While you’re here, I’d appreciate it if you’d follow my page and invite your friends to do the same. You never know what I’ll write about next, but I promise, I’ll try to keep it interesting!