Don’t you love it? I’m pretty sure it’s my new therapy. No, I don’t have or spend lots of money. When I worked full-time, I could drop $100 at a scrapbook store every few months without batting an eyelash. But now that I only work part-time and make about 1/3 what I used to, I have to be more careful, selective, and planned out. Along with my shrinking pocket book is the shrinking amount of LSS’s (local scrapbook stores) around me. I used to have 6 LSS’s within 1 hour, but now only 1 remains. So not only do I have to better plan my spending, but I have to figure out when I’m going to drive 45 minutes to the “local” scrapbook store. But shopping for scrap supplies is still a blast! Within 1 hour’s drive, I also have 2 Michael’s, 1 Beverly’s Crafts, and then of course Target, Walmart and Tuesday Morning. I’ve even found scrapbook-related stuff at Longs Drugs, Mervyns, and Kohl’s. My favorite places to shop are the LSS and Beverly’s (aka Bev’s). The LSS is fairly small – about 1/10th the size of my favorite scrappin superstore, YOUNGPLAY MEMORIES. But they do a good job of keeping new and current things and carry my favorite lines – Basic Grey, Fancy Pants, and Autumn Leaves. The owners are very nice and they even donated a bunch of stuff for my last crop. As for Bev’s, it is a fabric and craft store but they have a generous scrapbook section. When I was there the other day and chatting with the cashier, she said they had a new manager who is a scrapbooker. So that explains why there has been an expansion of scrapbooking supplies at Bev’s recently. The manager happened to walk up then, so I said, “Can I give you a bunch of compliments?”. I told her that I really appreciated the new scrapbook aisles, the vast selection of new products, and how organized everything was. She was happy to hear it, and also pointed out their Wish List, where you can write down any product you would like them to order. (I told her I already had my own version of a Wish List: in my wallet, a list of all the items in their store I want to eventually buy!). Anyhow, that’s great customer service and I appreciate it. I encourage YOU to take the time and speak with your scrapbook store managers, even if they’re a chain like Beverly’s. I always say, “They don’t know if you don’t tell ’em”. If they’re smart, managers will listen to your compliments and concerns about their store. Heck, if they don’t respond to us, we can just shop online! (Don’t worry, LSS’s, it’s not my first choice, you are). As for “shopping smart” for scrapbook supplies, my best hint is: Use Coupons! Just about every week, there are 40% off coupons for Mike’s, Bev’s, etc. and I’m sure lots of you have access to Hobby Lobby and Joann’s. Most stores accept competitor’s coupons, so clip away and stick ’em in your wallet! It’s nice to get a $20 paper stack for only $12, isn’t it? You can even split the stack with a friend, and you still get lots of paper for only 6 bucks. Also, look at the store ads and gear your shopping to the sales. If all adhesives are 30% off this week, stock up, by God! Happy scrappy shopping!