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Thursday, May 21, 2015

What do you do when you're up at 2 AM?

I know I shouldn't be doing this. I should be trying to sleep. And I do try for a while. But, the other night, up from 2 AM to about 4 AM, I just could not sleep!

I considered going outside and planting more in the garden, but my fear of encountering a coyote in the dark stopped that thought in its tracks. I considered sweeping and mopping the kitchen floor. After all, this would be a good time to insure no one set foot on a still-wet and very clean floor. But that just sounded like it would take too much energy at 3 AM (and might wake other members of the household, who would then come get a midnight snack, and there goes that opportunity to keep the floor from being walked upon just after mopping).

So, what do I do in the wee hours of the morning, while I wait for the time to have a cup of coffee? The other night, I was online, shopping for shampoo! And I bet some of you do that sort of thing, too!!

I keep a list of items to look for in the near future, when I'm out shopping. This list sits on the table next to my computer. I grabbed it, and began my midnight rendezvous with the online merchants.

While the rest of the family is content to use whatever is cheap, for shampoo, I use a color protecting shampoo. It's a particular brand that came highly rated for maintaining color treatments, which prolongs the time between colorings, saving me both time and money.

So, I shopped and shopped, and kept finding better and better deals. Found the shampoo I've been using at ULTA, near us, at a pretty good price. But a few minutes later, I stumbled upon a deal for the same product at JC Penney. Their salon carries the brand I wanted, cheaper than other stores in the area, and they have a coupon going on through this weekend (for an extra 10% off), that I could print out to take with me to the mall.

But wait, it gets better. I had all the time in the world (that's how it feels at 3 AM, right?), so I began reading more and more reviews about various products, and came upon a recommendation for a drugstore brand of shampoo, in the budget category! (Budget category -- that's calling my name!!) I thought, well this is worth a try.

In all of my late night shopping, I had come across a couple of coupons at for Proctor and Gamble hair products. Wonderful! I could buy an amount that would last me about 1 year (I really do use shampoo in the "size of a dime" amount when shampooing my hair). And it would cost 1/5th of what I paid one year ago, for a pricier brand.

So, while on, I wanted to take advantage of a couple of coupons, so I found the hair color that I've been using and added 4 boxes of that (an 8-month supply, which means I won't have to be looking for a deal on my color for a while). This then gave me 2 more coupons to use in this purchase. Using the coupons on the hair color, yielded a savings of about $1 per box over Target's sale price (and Target has pretty good sale prices on hair color).

And wanting the free shipping, I began to look around at other categories of beauty and health care. I take a particular supplement that I believe is helping me battle my present fatigue. Locally, at Super Supplements, I pay about $25 for a bottle of that supplement. By using yet another coupon (on supplements), and combining with a current sale on this brand, I paid $17.99 for this health care need (savings of $8 over what I was prepared to spend later this week). And I got my free shipping.

For items that were already on my shopping list for the near future, I was prepared to spend about $65. With my middle of the night shopping, I spent $40. I didn't buy anything that I wasn't already planning on buying. So the savings is "real" savings. And I about completed finding all of the items from my little list.

A savings of about $25, in exchange for 1  1/2 hours of my precious sleep. I'm not totally convinced this was such a good plan. If I wake up again tonight, I think I'll just go get a snack and go back to sleep.

One suggestion about middle of the night shopping -- just hold everything in a "cart" until the morning. You really will sleep on it. Then, in the morning, you can be sure of what was going on in your mind in the wee hours. No purchases that sounded good at the time!

Now tell me, what do you do in the middle of the night when you just can't sleep?

(p.s. I am currently working on finding new places to buy "my regulars", and save some money. This week, I picked up 8 tubes of toothpaste, at a savings of $2.24 over what I usually spend. Every last bit of savings means that our income stretches a little further towards our goals -- currently saving for a new furnace.)


  1. When I can't sleep, I try to do meditation and relaxation exercises to calm down my mind. I'm surprised you were able to get back to sleep after your wee-hours shopping. I would have been so excited by the good deals I found I wouldn't haven't been able to sleep at all.

    1. Hi live and learn,
      Maybe getting good deals is soporific for me!
      Your way of dealing with sleeplessness is probably the recommended thing to do -- good for you!

  2. I usually wake up in the middle of the you can tell by the time of this reply lol...often it is about something I'm trying to figure out. I like to fall asleep contemplating so maybe that is why I get up anxious to solve the problem, sometimes it is about a crafty project like tonight, making graduation leis for next week. I've been working on it for awhile, of course trying to use materials I already have. I think being frugal takes a lot of work and sleep!!


    1. Hi YHF,
      Oh, your graduation leis will be a fun project! Do you have many to make? Our family spent a week in a home on Kauai, when I was a girl, and making leis is one memory that I carry fondly (hacking into a coconut with household tools is another fun memory). f you think of it, in 2 years, remind me to make a couple of leis for my daughters when they graduate. I'm sure I'll be over-the-moon talking about that upcoming day for weeks, so you'll know when the big day(s) occur(s)!

    2. Not many, just 2 or possibly 3 for our oldest grandson, yup I was a young grandmother. I don't know how expensive fresh flower leis will be next week, so to be on the safe side I am making flower like yarn and cord leis, with money origami somehow worked in. That's where I'm stuck, how to put it all together so it looks meaningful, not gawdy. Alas, I have so many yarns in my bin, just not the right color and thickness, so I may have to head out today and buy some.

      Making leis is fun, when you're not pressured, and I'm surprised how graduation leis have caught on in other parts of the country. I don't make leis for myself, not often even, so I relied on the internet blogs and you tube instruction videos. Very big help it was. Kauai is beautiful, so lush and relaxing. Glad you have wonderful memories of the island. Every time I speak of Kauai, my husband reminds me how cheap the properties were after Hurricane Iniki (since Kauai was a direct hit), and how he said we should buy...but I thought he was nuts. He turned out correct again.


    3. Good luck, YHF! Sounds like you have a nice idea!

  3. Hi LIli,
    When I can't sleep, I pray.
    I'm extremely curious as to what supplement you are trying for fatigue. If you feel comfortable with it, please share.
    Jo Ann

    1. Hi Jo Ann,
      Prayer is calming, isn't it?!

      The supplement is called Adrenal Fatigue Fighter, by Ridgecrest. It's designed to support the adrenal glands, while I pursue a more balanced life-style (getting up in the night probably isn't helpful in that area). This supplement has a bunch of herbs, in addition to B vitamins. One of the herbs is ginseng, which is a mild stimulant, but much weaker than coffee. So, I allow myself 1 morning cup of coffee, then the ginseng seems to get me through the rest of the day. It also contains Holy Basil, which is supposed to help combat stress, and boost the immune system. I started this supplement on Jan. 1, along with a strict program of Vit. D, liquid Vit. C, liquid Vit. B-12, after a lot of personal research. I was skeptical at first, but figured it was worth a shot. A month in, I thought maybe I was getting some benefit, so I continued. About 2 months in, I began to feel more balanced. It's not like I feel a zing of energy, but everything just seems to be falling into place, slowly. My mental clarity has been somewhat restored, and most nights, I do sleep better. (It's cyclical for me. I go a couple of weeks of restless nights, then a couple of weeks of good sleep.)

      There isn't one simple fix, but finding a balance in my life, and improving sleep, eating, limiting harmful substances (for me that's caffeine, sugar and junk food, even homemade junk food), exercising but more modestly (I was overtraining for many months), and adding in the supplements which seem to help me.

      In addition to this supplement, I have long-known that B-12 in liquid form really helps me, where a regular B-complex doesn't seem to do anything (although it probably is, I just don't feel it, as I do with liquid B-12). I began taking B-12 drops 3 years ago, and felt substantially better during the day. Enough so that I was convinced to continue to buy it. With theB-12 and the Adrenal Fatigue Fighter, when I begin to run out, so am not taking it as often or as much, I begin to see a decline in my general well-being.

      I would recommend reading a bunch of reviews online. You'll see that some people find themselves helped by these products, and other people don't. Even if the help I'm receiving is all placebo, that's good enough for me, for now.

      I think, as women, we all go through a period in our lives when our hormones mess with our energy. I've heard it referred to as crashing fatigue. And this is what I feel like, just crashing on some days.

      Maybe I'll write up a couple of posts on the various ways I'm trying to improve my own well-being, as there could be something I'm doing that could help someone else. And maybe you'll all have some feedback for me.

  4. No wonder you're fatigued--you're up at night!

    I also rarely sleep through the night so I go potty, get a drink and maybe just check email and then force myself to go back to bed.

    When I go to bed at night I do a lot of praying for my kids as they all are studying toward their degrees (one is done and graduates this Saturday!), and then I pray for my husband who is dealing with muscle back pain, then our parents, and siblings and whatever comes to mind. I guess that is what I do at night before sleep, during sleep, and my wake-up times and even during the day.


    1. Hi Alice,
      You are right on that! Bad sleep has been a contributor to my fatigue! I miss those nights when I would go to bed and not wake up until the sun came up.

      Well, pray without ceasing is vital. I will try more of that.

  5. Great job on finding your necessary items for so much less!

    As for sleepless nights, I read. Sometimes, I get a warm bath and read in there. We are a 1.5 bath household, meaning the 7 of us share a tub/shower combo, so the middle of the night is actually a great time for a bath with no line, lol. I go through periods of time where I have a lot of sleepless nights (several autoimmune issues), and thankfully, other times when I sleep well for a few weeks. Hoping you are feeling less fatigued and more like yourself and able to sleep well very soon.

    1. Hi Cat,
      I have gotten up to take a hot bath on a few occasions. I imagine with your household, not only would there be no line, but you could just relax without anyone needing anything while you're in the bath!

      I'm sorry that you have autoimmune problems. That must be frustrating and debilitating at times. I hope you are finding what you need to make this as easy on yourself as possible.

      With my sleep pattern, I have a cycle of a couple of weeks of good days/nights of sleep, followed by a couple of weeks of poor sleep. During poor sleep weeks, I find I do best if I go to bed as early as possible, then if I sleep poorly, at least I am getting in the hours.

  6. Just wanted to let you know I received this post in my Feedly. What shampoo did you settle on?

    1. Okay, good to know that your feed is working properly.

      The shampoo is Herbal Essences Color Me Happy Shampoo for Color-Treated Hair. I don't remember what website was recommending this for color-treated hair, in a budget category. But a search online might put you in the right direction.

      I have been using a Redken product "Color Extend". (This was recommended by Good Housekeeping a couple of years ago.)I was pretty happy with it, but it is pricey. The Herbal Essences product for color-treated hair was $2.99 at (with a coupon), so it shouldn't be very expensive in stores. I'll see if it works as well for me.

      I figure, though, worse case scenario, my hair color fades too soon, and I go back to the Redken product. I could always alternate the 2 shampoos, if I think I get enough benefit.

  7. Oh my! I can totally relate to this post! At this point I've totally given up on sleeping through the night - at least given my current kitty situation. When Princess went into congestive heart failure, the vet thought her chances of surviving it were very slim, but since I wasn't willing to give up on her yet, he gave her a shot of medication in the office and said that if she lived through the night I should give her another dose 12 hours later (which worked out to being 5am) and then again every 24 hours after that.

    Long story short, she's rallied and is off the meds for the heart failure, but still on high blood pressure meds - which we started at the same time, so they're on the same schedule. My original thought was that I'd slowly push the timing of the meds later into the morning, but Princess had other ideas. Apparently there's a downside to turning pill time into treat time (she gets here pills wrapped in a little bit of roast chicken) because she apparently has learned how to tell time and now wakes me up around 4:30 every morning!

    I realize this is a monster of my own creating, and if I REALLY worked at it, I could probably get the time moved a bit - but I just don't have the heart to listen to her cry, especially knowing she's on life 8.5 here.

    ANYHOW, when I'm up in the middle of the night, one thing I actually try to avoid doing is turning on the computer or the TV, because the light of the screen supposedly messes with your internal clock and makes your body think it's morning. At this point most of my "can't sleep time" is spent cuddling with Princess, but back when things were more normal, I found that doing some relaxing low key yoga poses really helped me get back to sleep. I also second the hot bath recommendation - at least when it's cold/cool outside. :-)

    1. Hi Cat,
      I am glad to hear that Princess is doing better!

      I have heard that too, about the kind of light emitted from computer and TV screens. They say to turn that stuff of an hour before going to bed.


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