Category Archives: Education

Presidents' Daily Tech Deal: Go Mini For Mighty Savings–Wireless Mini Under $250!

What a grind, so many books, notebooks, pens, markers to haul around either to class or to work and that’s not even thinking about that laptop.  Yeah, laptops are convenient, but they don’t fit into every briefcase and after a day of carting it around it seems like it weighs a ton. 

The Answer:  A Dell Inspiron Mini 9, and for this price at Sam’s Club, you may consider getting one for yourself and one for your student or significant other.  Red Hot Price, $245 includes free shipping.  For these savings, hey, it’s worth getting a Sam’s Membership.  Be sure to tell them Markdown Mom sent you!

Comes in 4 colors:  black, red, pink, and white–cool.  Comes with 4 hours battery life, weighs 2.2 lbs.  Plus while you’re shopping, check out the Toshiba 16G Flash Drive instore and online for $34.24, what whopping memory!

‘Here are all the specs:

Processor and Memory:
Additional Information


1 year limited

Assembled Country of Origin:


Components Country of Origin:

USA and Imported

This item ships to the 48 contiguous states only. Due to specialty processing, estimated delivery time is 4 to 6 weeks. Signature required upon delivery.
Shipping Options (Delivery):
Shipping Included

  • Inspiron 910 Intel Atom processor N270, 1.6GHz, 533Mhz512K L2 Cache
  • 1GB DDR2, 533MHZ, 1 DIMMHard Drive and Multimedia Drives:
  • 8GB Solid State Drive (mini-card Module/PATA)
  • 3-in-1 Media Card ReaderGraphics:
  • Intel Graphics Media Accelerator (GMA) 950Connectivity:
  • Integrated 10/100 LAN (RJ45)
  • Wireless 802.11g Mini CardPorts/Slots:
  • USB 2.0 (3)
  • 15-pin VGA video connector
  • Audio jacks (1-line out, 1 mic-in)
  • AC adapter connectorDisplay and Webcam:
  • 8.9″ Wide Screen WSVGA TL LCD
  • 0.3MP WebcamPower:
  • 4-cell 32WHr Li-Ion Battery Dimensions and Weight:
  • Dimensions: 9.13″W x 1.07″H x 6.77″D
  • Weight: 2.28 lbs.Operating System:
  • Genuine Windows XP Home EditionIncluded:
  • Power cord




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    Art & Crafts Fairs: An Opportunity To Get Great Deals From Up and Coming Artists

    It would be nice to be a multi-millionaire or even billionaire and have your own private collection of artwork that enhances your living environment or as an investment.  Not many of us fall into this category, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t become collectors or decorate our home and at the same time support our local artists.  Plus, for free entertainment and a great learning opportunity for children, you can’t beat attending a local art fair.

    The myriad of colors will bring delight and the diversity of artistic expression is bound to fill your head with ideas and start the artistic juices flowing.  Although the artists pay a rental fee for a table or space, the fee amounts vary according to the popularity of the art fair.  But the buyer can expect lower prices than you would see at a retail store or art gallery.  Towards the end of the day, like other markets, you may be able to negotiate even lower prices.

    Click on Markdown Mom’s Glensheen Art Fair Slide Show

    Fun, Fantasy, and Frivolity–all spell a wonderful day’s outing!

    Wednesday Steals: From Tees To Textbooks

    ShopNBC: If you are petite or size XS check the clearance for designer Henry McGuire cropped jackets and sweaters. 75%-87% off. Retail prices up to $149.99, steal priced at $19.99.

    Newport News: Last Chance Summer Sale takes an extra 25% off clearance price for savings up to 70%+. Many items below cost, shop early for larger selection. There’s a lot of summer still left, so pick-up a new swimsuit or cover-up at steal prices of 50% and more off retail.

    Shopko: Still has summer clearance in-store selection worthy of spending the time and going through the racks. 40%-60% off in almost all departments.

    Alibris™: Shop for your textbooks and other reading material and save $2-$15 off your purchases. Use the following Promo Codes to save from now until September 15, 2008:

    Offer Expiration
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    Upgrade Your Culinary Skills & Selections For No Money

    MDM has found that taking culinary classes is a great way to bring an international flare into your life while expanding your family’s palate, and eating gourmet at diy prices. One recent evening’s class at Lunds and Byerly’s supermarket provided food, fun, and a couple of surprises for $10. One of the many classes offered was a Dim Sum class taught by Ms. Cynthia Chauwan Crinklaw.

    Dim Sum is basically stuffed Chinese dumplings. There is a whole genre that falls into this category including Sui Mai, potstickers, wontons,and sticky rice fried dumplings . At Lunds and Byerly’s Ms. Crinklaw presented a delectable trio of entrees including a dessert item of cantonese sweet tarts. While we were enjoying the samples her beautiful operatic voice entertained us with arias from Puccini and others.

    Another surprise, we were given a $10 gift certificate to be applied to an item from their Culinary Shop or Gift Basket Shop. MDM found a signature retro bowl from Zak! retailing for $19.99, with $10 dollar coupon it was a steal, larger and more solid than Rachel Ray’s trash bowl, it comes in MDM’s favorite color of green and other contemporary colors of turquoise, orange, yellow confetti . Plus it is eco-friendly since it is made of recyclable plastic. How great is that?

    Plus MDM made some new friends–you can’t expect a better night at school. Food, Friends, Fun, Entertainment and $10 coupon–Priceless!

    Looking for a good Dim Sum Restaurant in the Twin Cities. Try these:

    • Mandarin Village, Bloomington, Minnesota.
    • Yanzee, Golden Valley, Minnesota
    • Jung Eo, Richfield, Minnesota
    • Mai Village, St. Paul, Minnesota.

    To check on other class offerings go to Lunds and Byerly’s.

    Click Here To See Lunds & Byerly’s→uSlideshow of Dim Sum Class

    School Rummage Sales

    With budget constraints placed upon our school districts by an archaic funding system based upon property taxes, the resulting disparity between schools make it a necessity for some to raise funds for athletic, music and art programs and extracurricular activities. Private schools have a advantage of having been in the business of raising monies for programs oftentimes prior to their inception.
    One such local school is Marshall High School, initially religious-based, it is now a nondenominational private school that creates diversity through strong academic and athletic programs and by offering partial and full scholarships to disadvantaged but talented students. One of the ways that they fund especially their athletic program is an annual Spring rummage sale. This was held today, Saturday, March 29th. MDM feels that this particular event is a first rate example of how to get a school or church rummage sale right, and, in fact, anyone thinking about holding a rummage sale can gain from studying their organization of the sale.

    From the parking lot with numerous students and parents directing traffic including handicapped parking and drop-off near the entrance of the school to the stands and table and chairs to buy food and drink prior, during, after finding your bargains. The sale is held in the gym with the wooden floors are covered and all access is blocked but save one large entrance where greeters meet each customer with a plastic bag and a merchandise price list. Items are priced as follows:

    1. Men’s Clothes. From 25¢ for sox & underwear to $5.00 for suits, jackets & coats.
    2. Women’s Clothes. From 25¢ for sox & underwear to %5.00 for jackets & coats.
    3. Children’s Clothes. From 50¢ for t-shirts to 4.00 for jackets & snowsuits.
    4. Misc. Clothing. 25¢belts to $1.00 purses & backpacks.
    5. Toys. From 50¢ puzzles to $1.00 for large stuffed animals.
    6. Books & Music. From 50¢ tapes& records to $1.50 DVD’s and videos.

    And furniture, electronics, linens, and rugs individually priced. Plenty of floaters were available to answer questions, check prices, and to assist with removal of large pieces.

    There was one exit open and the hallway was cordoned off directing the customer to several checkout lines and an express line for limited items. Shopping carts were available to carry numerous purchases to individual cars.

    Within one hour tables were cleared of merchandise. Later on that afternoon, the sale will turn into a bag sale where everything that you stuff into a bag is sold for $5 or $10 rather than by the piece. This will clear the remaining merchandise, and some bargain hunters stick around solely for this part of the sale. Any remaining merchandise can be donated.

    What is S.O.S. for a successful sale? Staff, Organization, and Stuff!

    School Drop-Ins

    "School days, school days, good ole golden rules days."  Well, more than reading, writing, and arithmetic these days for the DIYer, the schools have abundant opportunities to widen your world and to enjoy the finer things of life.  You can learn to be a gourmet chef, a jeweler, or learn to dance with the stars.  Community Education is the best bargain around since it is low cost, and ultimately adds to the knowledge, experience, or lifestyle of the recipient.

    Recently Markdown Mom attended a cooking class on making pita bread at her local middle school.  This was a great class that not only had us make our own pan pita bread, but included making hummus, cucumber dip, roasted creamy eggplant dip, at the same time providing information on nutrition and the benefits of eating healthier. Our instructors were Ilone Hamilton and Jeanie Pekkala. 

    Breaking up in groups of 4, they  took us step-by-step through the process of making pita bread using a caste iron frying pan. 

    From scratch, the yeast was prepared, the dough was mixed, allowed to rise, kneaded, rolled into a ball, divided into 8 equal pieces, allow to rise, rolled into a 6" circle, and placed into an ungreased pan to fry/bake.  That was the exciting period when the pita bread would actually rise and form bubbles in the pan. 

    During the breaks when the dough was rising, Ilone and Jeannie would instruct us on the delicious fillings for the pita bread.

    At the end of which we were able to sit back and break bread with the other students.  We not only enjoyed the feast that we had prepared that night, but felt empowered to continue our culinary exploration with other classes.

    Classes through your local community schools or continuing education programs offer an opportunity to explore your talents, pursue your interest, and enlarge your world while providing an opportunity to meet other members of your community. 

    The costs are nominal, the pita class was $5 registration fee + supplies.  Other costs follow a similar fee structure depending on the number of times the class meets.  Classes include general interests that contain a potpourri of activities from crafts, finances, hobbies, to cooking classes, sports, languages, interior decorating, and computer training to name a few.

    With Ilone and Jeannie’s permission, Markdown Mom will take you through the steps of this recipe, pan pita bread, in addition to the oven baked recipe at a later date.  Right now, MDM is anticipating the new Spring Schedule for Community Schools–who knows what new adventure awaits!

    Remember you are never too young or too old to learn something new and once learned the enjoyment and knowledge is with you forever, plus the friends you make on the journey–and that’s a real bargain!