Thursday, January 29, 2009

An Adventure....

Whew! Okay....Breakfast Casserole in refrigerator ready to cook for dinner, Chocolate No-Bake Cookies made and setting up and last but not least I have Grape Jello in the refrigerator. I have all my laundry caught up and my house isn't the cleanest, but quite frankly I have ran out of steam!
This week has been a wild one! I blew a tire coming home from work Monday night. But, God was really watching out over me and it happened close to home and not on the interstate! It happened where there was no where to really pull off the side of the road, so I drove to a nearby parking lot about 100 feet away. So, not only did I blow a tire...I bent the snot out of my rim! Jeff believes it was either driving it the short distance to the parking lot, or when the tire blew, it jerked off the road and I jerked it back on. But, it doesn't change the outcome, the rim was bent! So, Tuesday Jeff spent the day trying to find a used rim, he called every local dealership, garage and junk luck. We had to order one off the internet. So, Tuesday I drove my Dad's Jeep! The Jeep hasn't been driven in about 6 months and is an old Jeep he fixed up. What an adventure! I couldn't keep the blasted thing running. Every time you stopped it would die...I called my Dad and he said that I had to let it "warm up". I know that people thought this crazy blonde has not a clue on how to drive...I had to keep one foot on the gas and the other on the brake when stopped. It looked like I was trying to drive a straight drive...and I wasn't doing well at it! Lol! Jeff took the Jeep Wednesday and today until my rim arrives and I am driving his car. Yes, I have the spare on my van...but I am uncomfortable driving it with that tiny tire! Ugh!
This situation was a huge inconvenience and a costly one too. But, I saw God working throughout it. God kept me safe! I wasn't on the interstate faraway from home, I was minutes away! I was going a slow speed...something that I wouldn't have been doing on the interstate! I was able to regain control of the van when the tire blew and not hurt or damage it (other than the rim)! My Daddy had his Jeep for us to use...which is running fine now that it's been driven a while! What an adventure! Not one that I want to repeat! Lol! But, God was there! Watching over me! Keeping me safe! God is Good!

Monday, January 26, 2009


I'm still here! I'm sorry that I have been blogging lately. Getting this part time job has thrown me off just a bit. I need to adjust. I have been working more hours, mostly on the weekend. I am now up to 4 nights a week. So, the nights I have been home I have been spending catching up with family. During the day I have been catching up on the housework and laundry.
My pay check has not become extra money like I would have hoped. Jeff's hours has been cut, so the little I bring home helps to supplement what he is not. But, this job is a blessing because I can bring home that money to help.
I just thought I would dash in here for a second to let everyone know that I am alive and kicking. I hope to post more soon.

Monday, January 12, 2009


It's Monday! I have been cleaning the house almost all day today, trying to get caught up from the weekend. I woke up with a bit of a stomach, I haven't been feeling too well. But we Moms have to keep on keeping on even when we don't feel our best! Lol!
The Bridal Show went well. It was a long, long day. We were unable to take lunch or breaks because we were so busy. 9 in the morning until 4 o'clock is a long time not to eat or go to the potty!:-) But, I made it through. The break down of the booth went smoothly and we loaded up my van and took everything back to the store. Once at the store, I quickly punched out and left....this ol' girl's feet hurt and I was HUNGRY!! I ate my packed lunch on the way home! Lol! When I got home at 4:30 I changed and started making home made pizza for dinner. Afterwards, I crashed!
I didn't have to work Sunday, which was a good thing! I had a huge headache! We didn't even go to church! I am not sure if the headache was part of the stomach bug I have or not.
The goals that I have for this week include getting some summer clothes ready for the consignment shop. I also want to take down my dining room curtains and wash them and clean the windows....maybe even the bedroom curtains and windows! I am wanting to sew a tote for groceries too. When I go to Aldis I always take a laundry basket to place the food in (I don't buy the bags!), but I thought if I could make a couple of totes it would help too. I have some fabric that I bought a couple of years ago I can use! I have never made a tote this could get interesting! Lol!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Weekly Wrap-up

It's Friday already!!
I have just finished with all of my cleaning. I like to clean really well on Friday because during the weekend cleaning is not a priority. I have gotten caught up on all of my laundry and now just have to put it away. I will vacuum out my van today too before I pick up the kids at school. I was going to start digging out the summer clothes to take to the consignment shop....but, that will have to wait until Monday. I am cooking my chicken and will have chicken tonight; as well as; freeze some for other meals.
Now for the weekly wrap-up!
I did my menu plan for the next 2 weeks and went grocery shopping. I was able to lower my bill slightly, but this shopping trip there were no cleaning supplies like detergent. I called the cell phone provider and dropped my coverage to the lowest plan available. We did not eat out at all this week and I made everything from scratch. I was able to work at the Bridal shop more this week than I had in the past...a total of 10.5 hours this week and I will have the Bridal show this Saturday(I will take my lunch to this too!). There were no purchases made on anything! This week has been a success on the frugal front. However, emotionally it has been rather draining (note the prior post!). Spiritually, I feel God is showing me things and doing things in my life that will help me in the long run, but boy do they hurt now! I am trying to keep myself out of a shame spiral for allowing some things to go on in my life. I am surrendering things in Prayer more than I have in the past and trying to place my trust completely on my Heavenly Father! Each time I feel myself thinking about or trying to take the burden back that I just prayed about I remind myself of God's love for me and that He has it under control! Although this week was very trying in some areas, I feel it was a success!
I wish everyone a great weekend! I'm unsure if I will be able to post anything during the weekend. If not, I will catch everyone up on Monday!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

UGH! Trying to hold it together!

I had a huge post typed out and ready to publish...but I then deleted it. It was about our struggle to do a lifestyle change and become debt free. We have ran into things that I was not prepared for. I guess the first and now deleted post was a "vent" about our decision being controversial with some people in my family's life. I was not prepared for the response that we have gotten from people we dearly love. I struggle with insecurities and self-esteem issues anyway...and to have dear friends make fun of and belittle our decision is something I was not prepared for. A lot of our debt accumulated trying to keep up with a their lifestyle...and now that we have placed ourselves on a budget that does not allow us to participate in eating out every weekend or shopping or continually going and doing, it has caused the friendship to go on a downward spiral. I find myself questioning things and people, it hurts to say the least. I won't go into details about the situation, let's just say that I wasn't expecting this blow! I'm hurt! I'm disappointed! I'm angry! My insecurities have grown! And I don't understand anything anymore!

Yes, this was an odd post....but this blog is to be honest and truthful about my struggles, so there it is in the raw emotional but edited post!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Bi-weekly Grocery Shopping done!

This shopping trip was a small victory for me. I got my bill lower! I shopped at Aldis and picked up most of my list. I will list below what I got and the cost of each item. If you have never shopped at Aldis, it is much cheaper than our local Ingles Markets and even Wal-Mart!

Black Beans @ $.55
1 pound ground turkey chubs @ $1.19
Cream of Chicken soup @ $.49
Cream of Mushroom soup @ $.49
Canned Tuna in water @ $.57
Canned Pink Salmon @ $1.99
Italian Bread Crumbs @ $.89
Spaghetti Sauce @ $.99
Tomato Sauce @ $.25
Canned Mandarin Oranges @ $.45
Navel Oranges @ $1.99 (6 in a bag)
Baby Carrots @ $.99
3 cups of shredded Colby Cheese @ $2.99
Egg Noodles @ $.99
Cream Cheese @ $.99
House Blend Coffee @ $2.99
Roma Tomatoes @ $1.49 (6 in container)
Cooking Spray @ $1.29
Parmesan Cheese @ $2.39
1 gallon of 2% Milk @ $2.89
Popcorn @ $1.49 (microwaveable 10 pack)
Bananas @ $.45 a pound
Mini Marshmallows @ $.79
Bread @ $.89
Sweet Onions @ $1.79 (5 per bag)
Canned Mixed Veggies @ $.55
Raisins @ $1.79

I got 4 ground turkey chubs and several soups for casseroles, so I may have listed the item once, but I got more in some items. I quickly went to Wal-Mart (which is across the street)and found a pack of cut up chicken for $.98 a pound! I also got some luncheon meat that was on sale for $2.83, Southwestern Style Egg Beaters @ $2.89and a pack of 10 hangers for $1.25. I will use the hangers to replace the wire ones I have and use the wire ones to take some more clothes to the consignment shop. I made my Wal-Mart trip quick and stuck to the perimeter of the the store...meat, diary, fruits and veggies. That way I had no temptations to battle! Although I didn't get some items on my list due to price (potatoes are getting expensive!), I was able to buy a pack of chicken that can be cooked and divided for more than one meal to replace them.
So, here it is.....usually I spend around $150 for 2 weeks, this time I was able to spend $100!!! That is $50 a week and I have a small stock pile of some items. A small victory for the pocket book!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Menu Plan for upcoming 2 weeks.....

Shepherds Pie
Pizza (Homemade)
Breakfast Casserole
Mexican Casserole
Pinto Beans
Potato Soup with grilled cheese bread
Salmon Patties
Beefy Baked Beans
Husband's Delight (new recipe)
Tuna Franks (new recipe)
Baked mac-n-cheese with broccoli
Pasta salad

I will buy ground turkey instead of ground beef, at Aldi the one pound ground turkey chubs are $1.19.
I will only use half of my turkey sausage for the breakfast casserole and the other half will go on pizza. Most of my dishes are casseroles, I can get by using a little bit of meat instead of making meat the focus of each meal. Tuna and Salmon are also cheap meats! I will post the new recipes if they turn out well. Now I have to figure out snacks, lunches and breakfast! If anyone has good non-meat recipes, please let me know...I am going to try to increase my non-meat meals....but the veggies cannot be expensive either or I won't be saving any money. Well, I guess I will get back at it...wish me luck!

I'm tired ALREADY!!!

Monday! Ugh! I am sipping on my coffee and trying to wrap my mind around things that need to be done!
My schedule has been thrown slightly. I have gotten a evening and weekend job at a Bridal shop to help pay our bills and hopefully pay down this credit card debt. My schedule is different each week, but so far I have only worked 6 hours each week resulting in a paycheck of $36!!! I am praying that my hours pick up where I can at least bring home an amount worth my while!! This job is only guaranteed until the end of March and then they will determine whether to keep depends on the economy. But, while I have it...I hope to make the most of it! It is an awesome job...hard on your body but awesome. I love seeing all the beautiful dresses and helping brides pick out dresses, veils, and accessories....then there are all the prom gowns and bridesmaid dresses....a girl can just get giddy looking at all the pearls, sequins and crystals! It's a rush! It's a great job too, because I can't buy anything! I am not in need of a bridal gown, veil, tiara or prom gowns, so for a recoving material girl..that is a blessing! It is rather hard on my body...lots of walking, standing and the dresses weigh a ton (okay they weigh up to 5 pounds a piece) but after carrying a couple hundred of them your arms get tired (okay, maybe not a hundred but at least 50! Lol!). My hours are usually one week day and then a couple of hours on the weekend. I worked yesterday for 5 hours. I may work Tuesday, I am "on call" and again "on call" for Friday and Saturday I work a bridal show! Fun!! But, I am hoping for my hours to increase...but not cross the line into me not getting to see my family in the evenings and weekends!
Now, back to the tasks at hand....I need to come up with a menu plan and grocery list today. I am trying to cut my grocery bill yet again! I need to clean my bathrooms and mop, catch up on laundry and dust and vacuum the bedrooms and living room. Ugh! I need another cup of coffee!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Ready to start a NEW YEAR!!

2008 was a HARD year! I am ready to start this new year out with wisdom and strength that came from all those hard knocks that happened in 2008!
First on my list, pay off all my credit cards!! Those of you that has read my blog before, know that I struggle with materialism! I always felt like I needed to keep up with my friends (never mind that they are in a ton of credit card debt!). We did stupid things like eating out and placing it on a credit card, buying furniture when ours was in great condition, going on numerous "weekend vacations" and placing all of that expense on credit cards and we went shopping every weekend....because "they" were going shopping! Now I'm not placing the blame on my friends....I am responsible for this debt! I am responsible for letting it happen! I am responsible for feeling like I needed to keep up with them (I suffer from a poor self-esteem and tons of insecurities!). These are issues that I have to work on personally to try to battle those demons. I have turned a page! I "woke up" in 2008. I woke up to not being able to pay my bills, I woke up to seeing myself as a materialistic person who has spent thousands of dollars and not having ANYTHING to show for it! Ugh! If only I could have a "redo"!
So, I have placed us on a tight eating out! no shopping! NOTHING NEW!! I am on Dave Ramsey's "Total Money Makeover" and I am determined to dig my family out of this mess! 2008 started this frugal journey and in 2009 it will continue. I will study and learn everything I can about living a frugal and smart lifestyle.
Second, I feel like I am in a spiritual slump. So, I am going to spend time in prayer...MORE time in prayer, trying to figure out what's going on!
Third, I am going to start reading more books! I have fallen away from reading a bit these past couple of years and I would like to get back to reading a book a month at least!
Fourth, I want to learn to sew, to can and to just be a lot more crafty.
Fifth, I want to start having more family time. I want to go on hikes, picnics, play games and just enjoy being with my family more!
Gosh, there are so many things I want to change...I feel overwhelmed. But, I will take it one step at a time.
I hope to make 2009 a great year!