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Friday, May 25, 2012

Friday Finds

I love coming home from work to find boxes on my porch indicating that the UPS man has stopped by to visit. This week I received two packages: one from Amazon and one from REI. We have a program at work for awards in which you cash in your award for gift cards to use at various stores. I cashed in $650 for Amazon and $50 for REI. With my Amazon cash, I bought myself a fancy new DSLR – Nikon D3100 14.2MP Digital SLR Camera with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-S DX VR Nikkor Zoom Lens! Nothing like getting a $550 camera for free (I also get free shipping through Amazon).

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When I was adding this to my cart I noticed that if you bought the camera from Amazon vs. one of their affiliates, you could also get a padded backpack for SLR cameras and 32GB SDHC memory card for FREE.  This is a savings of $65.34!

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Naturally I selected to receive the items even though the backpack isn’t exactly the cool camera bag I was hoping to get.  I do have to say that the backpack is pretty cool, though – lots of compartments and the thing is padded like you wouldn’t believe.

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It is definitely going to be used to transport my camera to the UP this summer and then I’ll just hang the camera from my neck when hiking.  (I’ll be back with a post on camera bags and straps next week)

The second box left on my front step was from REI. The big REI Anniversary Sale was going on and I knew I wanted to get a new hydration backpack since my old Novara hydration pack leaked every time I used it. I also wanted a Camelbak so that I don’t have to juggle a water bottle and my fancy new camera when trying to take pictures of my MI hikes.

Happily, all Camelbaks are on sale through 5/28! I chose the CamelBak Aurora Hydration Pack - 70 fl. oz. for Women ($48.69) since women’s packs obviously fit me better and this was the perfect size for biking or for light hiking around MI. There are two zippered pockets and two side mesh pockets – I can hold my phone, keys, snack, camera, bike tools, etc. in there.  This item was FREE for me thanks to my REI gift card from work!

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I also bought the REI rolled-sleeve shirt in green with my member-only 20% off coupon. I bought this shirt in purple a month or so ago and this is my favorite new hiking shirt. The shirt has UPF protection and the sleeves cover my shoulders but they are short enough and hang down enough that they feel like a tank top since air can circulate without causing me to get too hot. My shoulders are the first area to burn (and I’m incredibly fair skinned so I burn quick and often) so I love that they will be protected without giving up comfort with this shirt.

That’s it – I still have $101 to use in Amazon cash so we’ll see what I get next…

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