Sunday, August 31, 2008

Money Monday . . . Frugal Alternatives for your laundry

If you have ever seen my blog (Gretchen's blog), you may have seen my homemade laundry detergent. Well, if you haven't tried it - you should. It works wonderfully and is very easy to do. Yes, it takes about 30 minutes of your time and if you don't have a food processor it could take a little longer, but it is well worth it. If you would like to read more about it, please visit here.

Anyway, my aunt keeps asking me if I have a frugal fabric softener recipe. I haven't tried one because I have been using the Shaklee brand and I have yet to run out. So I am now almost out and am going to try the following recipe which I got from several different blogs (see here). I use the Downy ball to put my fabric softener in because I never remember to add it to the rinse cycle.

Frugal Fabric Softener
  • 2c baking soda
  • 2c white vinegar
  • 4c water

Mix ingredients and store in a plastic or glass container in your laundry area. Label the container and keep it out of the reach of children. To use: Shake he mixture and add 1/4c to the final rinse in your washing machine. If you have hard water, use 1/3c.

*Now remember that baking soda and vinegar react with each other and they will bubble up and foam, so use a larger container to mix the ingredients and once that has settled, then put them in a smaller container.

Has anyone tried something other than this in their laundry?

Friday, August 29, 2008

Foto Friday!

While I was in Wisconsin last week, I got to take some engagement photos for some friends of mine who are getting married in December. They are the sweetest couple, completely devoted to the Lord and living their lives fully for Him! I am so excited for their wedding!

Since I loved ALL of the images from their shoot, it was SUPER hard to pick just one to post here, but you can see the rest over at their engagement post on my photography blog. :)

So, having said all of that, here is ONE of my favorites....


Also, if you're a regular reader I'm sure you've noticed by now the layout switch. Well, not exactly switch, just the width of the blog. I realized that I was wasting about half of the screen (which is the way Blogger automatically sets it up for some reason), so I learned how to fill the screen! Yay, me! Of course, those of you with widescreen monitors or laptops probably still have some space, but for those of us still living in the dark ages...we're full screen now! I also learned how to make my pictures bigger, which was really fun and exciting!

What do you all think of the wider layout?


We Have a Winner!

****We have a winner for our coupon giveaway. Stacy, who is not a blogger, won this week's giveaway. Thank you all so much for entering and leaving your interesting comments. Please check back often, as we plan to do more coupon giveaways in the future. Thanks again!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Thankful Thursday - Home Sweet Home


As much as I do love visiting my family, taking a 12-hour journey as a temporary single parent with 3 small children twice in a two-week period of time is, shall we say, a bit of a challenge. As you can see from the photo above, trying to take a picture while driving with 2 whiny toddlers and 1 hungry infant didn't work out so well for me.

We returned to the great state of Indiana on Monday evening and I cannot even begin to tell you how nice it is to be home!

All of a sudden, our extremely uncomfortable and insanely noisy bed just isn't all that bad because, well, my husband is in it with me.

And those huge spiders that crawl in from the woods out back? Not so terrible, because it means I'm home.

It's amazing how a change of scenery - even a short one - can make you so much more grateful for the things you're used to. I am so thankful to be home and enjoying my family, my house, and my AIR CONDITIONING!!! :)

What are you thankful for this week??


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Wacky Wednesday . . . Be Wacky, Be Frugal

One of the definitions of wacky is being crazy or silly. Many people might say that being frugal takes some wacky tendencies. Sometimes being frugal requires that you be wacky or silly. It definitely requires that you be creative. Not being frugal is easy. You don’t watch where your money goes. You don’t look for sales. You just go out and buy what you want with little or no research into the price or product. But, really, what is the thrill in that?

If you have never read The Tightwad Gazette by Amy Dacyczyn you must check it out at your local library or buy it at Half Price books. Some of the information is outdated but some of it is still applicable to today and it has some seriously wacky, frugal ideas in it. You should also check out Clark Howard - he always has great ideas on how to save money and free downloads of his show as well.

I will have to share a frugal story for you that was definitely wacky.

When my husband and I were going through Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University (highly recommend by the way), we just moved into a house (pre-Dave of course). Anyway, we needed a refrigerator badly. We could not afford to pay hardly anything so I looked everywhere. Finally, I found a $33.00 refrigerator on eBay. It was listed as “Garage Refrigerator” and it was. Well, could you believe it, we won the auction (I guess no one else needed a garage refrigerator). We went to pick up our appliance, and it did need some cleaning, but we cleaned it and we lived with that refrigerator until my dad gave us his old one – which was MUCH nicer than the one we had.

And our garage refrigerator is now, sitting in our garage.

I told that story to tell you this, sometimes you have to be wacky and creative to reach your goals. You can’t always have the newest, nicest side-by-side refrigerator (I’m still dreaming of that by the way). But you can always find something to fit your need.

So, what wacky things have you done in the name of frugality?

Picture from


Monday, August 25, 2008

Tasty Tuesday . . . Chicken Alfredo Pasta from the pantry

I don't know how stocked your pantry is, but I try to always have pasta and cream cheese on hand because my husband loves Alfredo sauce. So, if you have chicken, pasta, cream cheese, Parmesan cheese, milk and garlic salt, then you can make this meal.

I use my Alfredo sauce recipe. While I am cooking that I boil the water to cook the pasta (I apologize if you need actual measurements of things. I just eyeball how much pasta I think we will need. It is usually about half of a box or so). At the same time I am cutting up 2 chicken breasts to cook in some oil. Once everything is done, drain the pasta and toss it with the chicken and Alfredo sauce and you have a delicious dinner that took you less than 20 minutes. If you would like, I usually cook broccoli in the microwave and add it in as well. I don't have any pictures so you may have to use your imagination!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Deals for the Week of August 24

Don't forget to check out the Massive Coupon Giveaway!

These deals are thanks to Money Saving Mom, BeCentsable, and others. I will update as more information because available.

Walgreens from Money Saving Mom
Walgreens from BeCentsable

Don't forget to check out Meijer coupons at Meijer mealbox.
Check out Kroger's online coupons here.
Target coupons here and here.
Don't forget you can still find out about the CVS $2/$10 coupon here.

Crazy Massive Coupon Giveaway!

****We have a winner. Stacy, who is not a blogger, won this week's giveaway. Thank you all so much for entering and leaving your interesting comments. Please check back often, as we plan to do more coupon giveaways in the future. Thank again!

I have never done a giveaway before so here goes. I have an unbelievable amount of coupons. Half of them are clipped and half of them need to be clipped. The soonest expiration date is September 6th, but most of them don't expire until October or November and some don't expire until 2009.

To enter, simply leave a comment about what topics you like to read about on blogs. You will need to leave a valid e-mail address so I can let you know when you won and to get your mailing address. Your coupons will be mailed to you on Friday, August 29th via USPS Priority mail.

Only one entry per person. Giveaway will end Thursday, August 28th at 11pm EST.

The winner will be chosen randomly and announced Friday morning, August 29, 2008.

Good luck,

Friday, August 22, 2008

Frugal Friday - How to find free produce

We had our monthly meeting for our Once A Month Cooking Club last night. Lately, we have been trying to do different things during that night. Last month we made a bag (sewing). This month we had a guest speaker show us how to make and can applesauce. She also gave us some tips on where to find free produce.

Here are her suggestions:
  1. Obviously, grow fruits or vegetables yourself. She has quite a big garden. She had also gotten 4 apple trees as a gift a few years ago. We used these apples to make the applesauce with. She also planted a few blueberry bushes.
  2. Be a scavenger. She advised us to find produce where we can. She gets wild raspberries from some bushes right on her property line. She gets them a few other places like by the railroad tracks as well. She also suggested we go to orchards and pick up the apples that have fallen from the ground. Make sure they are not rotten, but she said you can get these for a reduced price and sometimes for free. She also suggested just asking people. She has often knocked on someone’s door that might have a peach tree that looks like the peaches may go to waste. She just asks them if she can pick some (ALWAYS ask first!). Then she will offer to bring them back some preserves or whatever she might do with them.
  3. Ask friends and neighbors who might have extra produce. Many people will grow tomatoes in the summer and a lot of them usually have an abundance. Ask them if you can trade some produce or offer to do something for them in return.
  4. You could also possibly trade or get some free produce on I have personally never done this, but I have seen others that this has worked for.

Here is a personal story of my recent scavenger finds. Heidi (the creator of this blog) informed me that there were wild blueberry bushes in front of our local Chick Fil A restaurant. She asked the manager if she could pick them and he said yes. When she wanted to pick them they were not ripe yet. So she told me about this and another friend and I went to pick quite a few yesterday. Of course we asked first, and they said we could. Heidi was still out of town, but we may have to go again when she gets back because we left plenty more.

So you can get free (or very cheap produce) if you are creative. Especially now when crops are being harvested and there are still places to find corn, green beans, peaches, blueberries and many other things. Leave a comment if you have also done something like this.

For other frugal ideas, please visit Biblical Womanhood.

Foto Friday!

Since I'm still out-of-state, I haven't had any photo shoots this week. It seems like I've had one almost every week since I started "Foto Fridays" so this week was kind of strange. It means I actually had to rummage through all those photos I took of my kids and random other things this week to find a picture for today. :)

It was kind of a tough call as we have been going on lots of fun little outings since we've been here, but here's what I came up with as one of my favorite photos this week:

Yep, that's my baby -growing up SO fast! She thought the bubbles were pretty cool.

For more of this week's photos, visit my photography blog.

Fun Friday - I've Been Tagged!

I admit I'm terrible at these. I was tagged a few months ago and I did respond but it was a real stretch. I even won an "Excellent Blogger Award" and promised to endow others with the same award (as I was supposed to do) and failed in that area as well. But I am trying. Hence, this post.

Gretchen over at ExtraordinaryOrdinaryLife tagged me last week and, well, I'm just now getting around to posting this. The "tag" requires that I post six random things about myself...which is the exact reason that I'm so bad at these. Random is definitely a great word to describe me, but when it comes to me thinking of six things all at once....well, I'm not so great at that. But I'm going to give it a shot. So here goes....

Six Random Things About Yours Truly

1. I like ketchup but not tomatoes. I actually hear this is quite common.

2. I still have a baby tooth in my mouth.

3. I have never dyed my hair. Something tells me I'm spelling that word wrong, but the red line isn't showing I guess it's right.

4. I have never cooked with fresh herbs. (I know there are audible gasps escaping from so many mouths right now.)

5. When I married, I kept the same initials: HRS.

6. I have a very serious allergy to horses.

Whew! Okay, not terrible, but I did have to think on those for a while. Now, with this taggage (yes, I DO know I just made up that word), I'm supposed to tag 6 other bloggers. Here comes the embarrassing part. I don't read 6 other blogs. In fact, I only frequent 2 other blogs regularly. One is Crystal at MoneySavingMom, who definitely has NO time to fill out a silly random facts quiz, and the other is Gretchen who tagged me. Sad, I know. But it's the truth. Therefore, I will not be tagging anyone else. Sorry to ruin it, but I guess the fun stops here.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I have found many little things this week to be thankful for. God has really worked a lot of things out. I am thankful that I am done with my dental surgery (skin grafting - yeck) and everything healed very nicely. I am thankful that my kids and I have been able to stick to more of a schedule this week so we are not running around not knowing what we are doing. I am thankful that my little girl is pulling up even though she is getting into EVERYTHING. Yes, there are a lot of little things to be thankful for!


I am going to start co-blogging with Heidi on this blog so she wanted me to introduce myself to you. I also have a blog, Extraordinary Ordinary Life. I am married and I have two children, 3 and 1 (a boy and a girl). I am also a stay at home mom and I love it. My favorite hobbies are cooking, baking and sewing – can you call it a hobby if you have to do it? I also am learning to garden and can, all things domestic. The blogging world is still fairly new to me, but I am enjoying writing and reading different blogs.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Wacky Wednesday - Morphine, Sweet Morphine

I've talked about my grandpa quite a bit lately. News update for today: My grandpa moved to a nursing home yesterday with hopes that he will continue to recover and be going home within several weeks. We are all surprised and excited for this news.

Not to make light of the situation or anything, but there have been some awfully funny occurrences since my grandpa has been on morphine. I would not share these stories if it wasn't for my grandpa's excellent sense of humor. When he's back to his old self, I'm sure he will appreciate this:

#1. Oley (pronounced Oh-lee)
Oley is a mouse who lives on the ceiling. Yes, my grandpa actually named him. Oley comes out to play when the morphine kicks in. I think he must taunt my grandpa (perhaps with cheese?) because my grandpa stares at him regularly and talks about him a lot. Oley made his debut in the hospital but we only learned of him recently. Oley must have been in my grandpa's pocket when he was transferred from the hospital because he's at the nursing home now.

#2. The Project
My grandpa has always said that he didn't want to go to a nursing home. Shortly after he arrived, this conversation ensued with my aunt (his daughter):
Grandpa: "So, who's in charge of this project?"
Aunt: "What project?"
Grandpa: "The project where they try to see how much pain a man can take...and then you get to the dot....and then you're gone."

#3. The Spider
The spider lives on television and interrupts the baseball games. I can imagine that he probably does an Irish jig every so often, kicking his eight little legs in all directions. If any of you have seen The Ring, perhaps you can relate.

Tasty Tuesday - Crockpot Chicken and Stuffing

I made this recipe for the first time yesterday for about 9 people. I don't really recommend trying things out for the first time on large groups of people, but it worked out okay.


This recipe is supposed to make stuffing, but it turned out more like thick gravy. Of course, I did cook it on HIGH for about 4 hours instead of on LOW for 6-7 hours. But anyway, it was VERY flavorful and tasty. (And the leftovers turned into stuffing.) When I realized there was not going to be any stuffing but rather only gravy, I threw some rice on the stove and it turned out great!

Bla bla's the recipe! (Sorry, no picture today!)


This easy chicken recipe is quick to prepare with cream of chicken and celery soups, chicken breasts, stuffing crumbs, and seasonings. Serve this chicken meal with your favorite side vegetables or a tossed green salad.


  • 1 can (10 1/2 ounces) cream of chicken with herbs soup
  • 1 can (10 1/2 ounces) cream of celery or cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine or chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
  • 1 teaspoon dried leaf thyme, crumbled
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Dash black pepper
  • 6 to 8 boneless chicken breast halves, without skin
  • 2 to 2 1/2 cups seasoned stuffing crumbs, about 6 ounces
  • 4 tablespoons butter


Combine the soups, wine or broth, parsley, thyme, salt, and pepper. Wash chicken and pat dry.

Lightly grease a 5 to 7-quart slow cooker. Sprinkle about 1/2 cup of the stuffing crumbs over the bottom of the cooker and drizzle with about 1 tablespoon of the butter. Top with half of the chicken, then half of the remaining stuffing crumbs. Drizzle with half of the remaining butter and spoon half of the soup mixture over that. Repeat with remaining chicken, stuffing crumbs, butter, and soup mixture. Cover and cook on LOW for 5 to 7 hours, or until chicken is cooked through.

Serves 6 to 8.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Update Time

I'm all thrown off since I'm out of town right now so I didn't prepare a Weekend Worship post for today, but I just wanted to give you all an update on my grandfather.

Today he slept almost the entire day. When I arrived around 7.30pm with my 3 rambunctious kiddos he woke up, smiled at that, talked to them (although his words are pretty difficult to understand most of the time), and was able to eat from a spoon. Well, I should say he was able to eat off a spoon. He can't feed himself, but he was able to accept soft foods on a spoon.

While the actual eating is a huge step forward, the all-day sleeping is not always viewed as an excellent thing. He's on a lot of morphine right now so that's probably the cause of it, but who knows.

The doctor (or nurses?) are scheduled to do an evaluation on him tomorrow. They will be determining if he will go to a nursing home, if I understand correctly. So keeping our family in your prayers would be greatly appreciated.

I hope you all have a wonderful week and if you don't hear from me as often as usual, thanks in advance for being patient.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Coupon Q&A - Notes from my Coupon Class

I recently taught a coupon class at my church. Several people (both those who attended and those were missed it) have asked me for my notes, so here they are....

*Preface: A lot of people think that coupons are a waste of time and that they don't save you enough money to make it worth it. Well, coupons ARE money. They are legal tender and are a form of currency. Not using a 25 cent coupon simply because "it's only 25 cents" is like not using a quarter from your wallet because "it's only 25 cents".

Where can I get coupons?

1. Newspaper – Dollar General has them every week for $1.

2. Neighbors/relatives – I typically get 2-3 extra coupon circulars each week from neighbors/relatives – sometimes more.

3. Print online

4. Red boxes in-store

5. Catalina register coupons

6. Magazines

7. Brochures at pharmacy and grocery store counters

8. Call your favorite companies and ask for coupons. (This really works!)

9. Recycle bin diving! J This may sound silly, but I know of people who have been very successful with this!

How long do coupons last before they expire?

That depends on the type of coupon. P&G coupons always expire on the 31st of each month but most coupons in newspaper circulars are good for 2-3 months. Internet coupons vary, but are usually valid for 1 month from print date.

Does everyone who clips coupons clip all coupons like you?

From my observations, there are three main types of couponers:

1. People who clip or save EVERY SINGLE coupon.

2. People who clip or save coupons for products they currently use or products they might like to try.

3. People who clip or save ONLY coupons for items they currently purchase.

*I started out in Category 1, but I quickly burnt out and am now in Category 2, which I find to be much better.

What methods do you suggest for organizing coupons?

The two most common methods that I know of include:

1. Binder or notebook with baseball card holders (my choice method)

2. Shoebox or recipe box with divisions

What type of organization do you use within your binder method?

There are two main options for this as well:

1. Categorically

2. Alphabetically

a. By product (I.e. "F" - Frosted Mini Wheats)

b. By brand name (I.e. "K" - Kellogg's)

*I personally file alphabetically by brand name. Why do I think brand name is better than product name? It causes less confusion, specifically with things like cereal. When Kellogg's products go on sale, typically they ALL go on sale. Why would I want to flip through all those letters to find the individual products made by Kellogg's when I could just open up to 'K' to see all of their products?

What is your system for clipping coupons?

I stack like circulars, staple on top of product picture, clip coupons, sort alphabetically by BRAND name, and file in my binder.

How long does it take you to organize your coupons each week?

Usually about 2 hours to staple, clip, and file – and it saves me up to $100/week!

Why do you use a binder instead of a box?

I can easily see every coupon I have whenever I want to without digging through everything. Also, if I ever dropped my binder (which I do ALL the time), my coupons would not spill out as they would in a box.

Why would I want to buy things I don't need?

Well, you're not buying things you don't need. You're getting things you don't need. But why would you get things you don't need? A few reasons:

1. To give away. There are several organizations (listed on your paper) where you can donate extra food and toiletry items. If you can get them free, why not give them to someone who may not know how to get them free?

2. To save for later. Let's say you have 1 tube of toothpaste in the bathroom and an extra tube in the closet. Will you need toothpaste after that second tube runs out? Of course! So why not get it NOW while it's FREE, rather than wait until later when you might have to pay a few dollars for it? If it's something you're going to need in the next 3-6 months and you can get it free or for pennies right NOW, get it and save it (unless of course, it's something that will expire between now and then).

3. To sell. This may sound silly, but I made $30 by selling HBA products at a garage sale this spring – and I didn't pay a penny for any of those products!

How can I get the best deal with my coupons?

1. Know your store's coupon policy. Coupon policies can vary within the same chain, although I think most of Indy's grocery stores have the same policies within their chains. Stores that I know of which regularly double coupons up to 50 cents here in Indy include: Kroger, Marsh, and Meijer. Some stores will only double a certain number of identical coupons (Meijer) while others do not have a max.

As a general rule, you can use 1 manufacturer coupon and 1 store coupon per item in most stores. So watch for store coupons to combine with man coupons for great savings! Store coupons can sometimes be found online, in the store's weekly ad, or in the local paper.

2. Watch the ads. The very BEST way to maximize your savings is to combine coupons with sales. I rarely buy something that isn't on sale and if I have a coupon for it, I usually wait until it's on sale to purchase it with the coupon.

B1G1 sales are perfect because, at most stores, you can use two coupons since you're technically buying two items. Oftentimes you can get items for free or almost free during B1G1 sales. This can be easily attained if you have a B1G1 coupon for something that is on sale for B1G1!

Specifically watch for 10 for $10 sales. A few months ago, Meijer had an AWESOME 10 for $10 sale. Due to their coupon policy about only doubling up to two identical coupons per transaction, I had to split my orders up but I wound up with $170 worth of groceries and household cleaners for only $48!

3. When double/triple coupon days roll around – STOCK UP! About once or twice a year, some of the grocery chains run a double/triple coupon weekend. This usually consists of double coupons up to $1 and triple coupons up to 50 cents, but it could vary by store. When these events happen, DO NOT MISS OUT. This is the time to stock up on ALL dry goods. You can get TONS of items for free (and oftentimes even make money on your groceries during these sales). Again, DO NOT MISS THEM!

4. Know how to read and interpret coupons. Coupons are generally interpreted by the text – NOT the photo. If your coupon says "any variety", it means any variety. Just because there is an expensive variety in the photo doesn't mean you have to buy THAT variety. Get the cheapest one for the best savings.

If the coupon does not specifically say "excludes trial size", it is valid on a trial size. (You may have cashiers that argue with this, but in general they know they can't fight it since it's not there in writing and it scans just fine.)

5. Always check the clearance isle. I have found so many great deals in the clearance isle, whipped out my coupon binder and found a couple for those items and paid pennies for them. If you have time, always glance at the "rejects".

Drugstore Deals


1. Get an Extra Care Bucks card if you don't have one already.

2. Register in online to get your $4/$20 coupon.

3. Pick up weekly and monthly ads.

4. Scan in-store coupon boxes for store coupons.

5. Use to purchase items which give ECB (CVS money)

6. Make money by purchasing "Free after ECB" deals and using coupons (store and man).

*Positives: Instant rebate. Better deals. Easy to understand.

*Negatives: Limit per customer.


1. Pick up a few Easy-Saver books.

2. Pick up weekly ads.

3. Combine Easy-Saver coupons with man. coupons with in-ad coupons to maximize savings!

4. Use coupon on "Free After Rebate" items and send in for rebate (or file online) to make money! Choose the Walgreens gift card over cash and receive 10% extra on your gift card!

5. Figure out and use Register Rewards (similar to ECB).

*Positives: Lots of coupons = big savings. No limit per customer since no card is required.

*Negatives: Rebates are a pain. Register Rewards cannot be used toward the same purchase (For example: $5 Register Rewards on 2 Dove haircare products cannot be used toward another purchase of 2 Dove haircare products in order to receive $5 RR.)

What should I do with my expired coupons?

1. Many stores accept expired coupons. You can try them at the register or just ask the manager on duty.

2. Military families overseas can use coupons several months beyond the expiration date. Visit the site listed below to find out more info.

3. Keep them for your children to learn math, how to save money, and to play "grocery store". J


The following is a list of resources (both websites and books) that I have found helpful in learning how to use coupons, bargain shop, and save money in lots of other ways! (Thanks to Crystal @ MoneySavingMom and Gretchen @ ExtraordinaryOrdinaryLife for helping me out with the printable coupon lists!)

Printable Coupons

MoneySavingMom's coupon printer

Red Plum

Smart Source

Eat Better America

Cool Savings

Box Tops 4 Education

Betty Crocker

Coupon Bar

Mommy Saves Big

Kroger 1

Kroger 2


Organic Printable Coupons

Horizon Organic

Mambo Sprouts

Organic Valley

Seventh Generation

Stonyfield Farm

Earth's Best

Nature Made

Santa Cruz

Coleman Natural Beef

Brown Cow

Organic and Natural Food Coupons

Recommended Books on Saving Money and Using Coupons

Shop, Save, and Share by Ellie Kay

Half Price Living by Ellie Kay

Greatest Secrets of the Coupon Mom by Stephanie Nelson

Miserly Moms by Jonni McCoy

The Complete Tightwad Gazette by Amy Dacyczyn

Living Well on One Income by Cynthia Yates

The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey

Recommended Internet Resources


PP Gazette

Coupon Mom

Hot Coupon World


What Can I Do With Expired Coupons?

Overseas Coupon Program

Where Can I Donate Extra Food/Toiletries?

Cut Out Hunger

How Do I Get Started at CVS?

CVS 101

Making CVS Work for You

How Do I Get Started at Walgreens?

Walgreens 101

Coupon Jargon (you might see these words/abbreviations online)

SS = Smart Source circular (found in newspaper)

RP = Red Plum circular (found in newspaper)

P&G = P&G Saver (found in newspaper)

Catalina = grocery store register coupon

ECB = CVS Extra Care Buck rewards

CRT = CVS register coupon

ES = Walgreens EasySaver catalog

Foto Friday!

Well, I'm here in Wisconsin visiting my grandfather and the rest of my family. That's why I've been somewhat forsaking all blogging this week. But today is Foto Friday and you know I won't miss today's post. :)

I had my very first senior portrait shoot on Monday night and I had a blast! It's much easier than shooting (photo shooting, of course -not gun shooting) squirmy little newborns or trying to do several people at a time. I had a hard time trying to pick my favorite image from his session because they were all so great, but here is one that I really like:

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Thankful Thursday - I Made it to Wisconsin!

I think I may have mentioned earlier this week that my grandfather is very sick. The kids and I drove up yesterday to see him and spend some time with my extended family who is also here from Arizona.

In addition to my grandfather being in the hospital, we've had some other events going on this week....

On Tuesday, my 2yo got her face smashed in the bathroom door. (Picture here.)

I made mention of my foot earlier this week as well. I had cut it on a rock in the river on Sunday evening. Well, when we finally arrived here last night, I ended up at the Emergency Room for my foot, because it had nearly doubled in size from all the driving and from my inability to put it up. It had been a tiny bit swollen the night before but nothing like this. So they cleaned it out and got me some antibiotics and hopefully everything will be peachy again soon.

In other news, my friend Gretchen and I are still talking about blogging together; it just hasn't come to a full head yet. But go ahead and check out her blog and see if you like her, because she will likely be a regular poster in the near future! (We are pretty certain we will use this blog when we do join up.)

I hope you're all having a great week!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Organization Week on hold!

In an effort to hold myself accountable to the task of organization, I wrote the previous blog last week and programmed it to be posted today. I actually forgot about it altogether until I got a comment on it sent to my inbox.


Yesterday I filleted a small portion of my foot while wading in the river and today I've basically been limping around the house doing only the bare minimum. My foot hurts like crazy but I'm rather stubborn when it comes to going to the doctor. Usually they just look at you and charge you a ridiculous amount of money. I hate that. Anyway, it's probably going to be fine but I'll admit I can't look at it without feeling woozy.

On another note, my grandpa has been in the hospital for several weeks now and so several people from my extended family are visiting him in Wisconsin. My mom invited me to come up this week to see everyone and I'm considering that.


On the way home from Madison, IN last night, we hit *something* on the interstate going 70mph. We stopped to see if everything was okay and the van seemed fine. We figured we must have hit a tire or something. The van drove fine the whole way home but it seems to be running louder than usual. So we need to get that checked out if I plan to go anywhere.

All that to say, organization just may not be happening this week. :(

Organization Week!

I am declaring this week of my life National Organization Week! Normally when I organize, I buy all those cute little organizer things from the dollar store, but since we ran into a bit of a cash strap last weekend, I'm going to *attempt* to do it without those handy little organizers. If I fail,'s only a few dollars, but it's money I'd rather not spend if I can do without.

I will try to remember to take before pictures (although I'm usually really bad at this) and after pictures so you can see *gulp* how disorganized my life was before this week.

Here is my planned schedule:

Monday - bathrooms (we have three)
Tuesday - kitchen cupboards
Wednesday - kids' closet *HUGE GULP*
Thursday - paperwork
Friday - office (corner of our bedroom) and laundry room (read: closet)

I am happy to say that our living room is very well organized and, with the exception of our office area, so is our bedroom. I'm not going to even TOUCH on the garage, but I'm *hoping* to get that done this week sometime as well as clean out the cars. (My husband still has winter gear in his car!)

Stay tuned for daily updates!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Foto Friday - I'm Way Behind!!!

So it's Sunday night and I'm just now posting my Friday blog. Ahhhh well.

We think we figured out what was a HUGE mess last weekend so I am praising the Lord for that! The other thing that was weighing on me was my grandpa. He's been in the hospital for about 2 weeks, doing okay, then worse, then better. etc. Please pray for him as he is in considerable pain at times.

Okay, onto the photo on the week....

Last weekend I got to do a family shoot for some relatives of mine before one of their boys left for Iraq. We had a good time. (At least, I did - I hope you guys had a good time too!) Here is one of my favorites:

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

One Final Funny....

This particular blog may not be so funny if you don't know our family outside of the blogging world. But it was one hilarious moment in our life!

What Is Daddy Good At?
The results are so surprising.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Blog Roundup Continues....

As I stated yesterday, I'm not exactly in any state of mind to be blogging right now so here are a few more blogs from some lighter days in my life....

Court TV
Short but sweet.

Stupid Me!
Yep, a whole blog devoted solely to a stupid thing I did!

Monday, August 4, 2008

I Know...I'm Absent...

I had an incredibly crazy stressful weekend and I just don't think I'm quite suited up for blogging yet after all that's gone on. In addition to all those things that I didn't just mention, we have suddenly gotten a MAJOR change in our mortgage (read: stupid mortgage company). Needless to say, life is a bit insane right now. I will blog my notes from Saturday's coupon class, but...I just need some time.

I was looking through some of my old blogs this evening in search of a particular one (which I never did find) but I came across a few that made me laugh and I think that was really good for me. Laughter really is good for the soul!

I'm going to post links to some of my funnier masterpieces until I decide I'm game for the whole blogging thing again. If you haven't read my previous works and are in need of a laugh, I highly recommend clicking on them each day. And if you've already read them, well...go ahead and read them again because, by golly, my life is just too funny sometimes. (Just not right now.)

So for today's masterful blog roundup.....

(You know that one has to be good, right?)

A Day in the Life of a Housewife
(Chances are, if you're a housewife, this exact same thing has happened to you at least once.)

Friday, August 1, 2008

Foto Friday!

This week's photo came from my maternity shoot with my friend Katrina:

For more photos from her shoot or other photos from this week in my life, visit my photography blog.