Friday, May 30, 2008
i have been stalking and loving all the frugal blogs i've come across the last few weeks. the biggest "deals" these thrifty ladies get are from CVS and Walgreens. we don't have a CVS, but we do have Walgreens and when i saw a $10 off $30 purchase coupon for today only on the money-saving blogs i thought today was my day to start! and start i did:)
the reason these stores have such great deals is because of their rebate programs. you can learn lots more at thrifty florida mamma and money saving mom and all the blogs they link to. they give you all the inside tips and background you'll need to be addicted like me!
here's what i got today...
two 52-count packs of walgreens diapers at 10.99 for the 1st pack and 5.49 for the 2nd
8-pack duracell AA batteries (with free earphones:) on sale for 5.99 plus $1 off coupon in store
walgreens 4-pack 60 watt lightbulbs 1.69 and 1.69 rebate
oral-b cross action toothbrush 4.49 with 4.49 rebate
exedrin 24 tablet box on sale 1.99
bulls-eyes candy to pacify my son while i shopped on sale 4/$5
my total was 30.93 and i go $10 off of that. i paid $20.93 and will get 6.18 in rebates PLUS 10% more if i get my rebates on a walgreens gift card rather than cash so i really got all of that stuff that we needed for........drumroll...........
i would have paid way more than that just for the diapers alone! i am so excited i can't wait to do this again!!!
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
i just purchased our airline tickets to oklahoma city and submitted our notice to end our rental agreement at this house. wow. we're moving. it still hasn't really sunk in, but here's a few things we will miss and a few things we're excited about in our relocation. when i say "things" i mean commercial establishments. of course this excludes natural beauty, relationships, etc. these are just the surface stuff, but still fun to think about...
losing by leaving the portland metro area
-trader joe's (another big ouchie)
-old spaghetti factory
gaining in oklahoma city
+SONIC (need i say more?!)
+target super center
+home ownership at half the price or less
each city and region has it's own local businesses that you wish you could pack in your suitcase when you leave. which one would you take?
we went to see prince caspian in the theatre last night. wow. it is so worth even the ridiculous movie ticket price. the imagery that lewis uses brought to the big screen is just beautiful.
there were so many powerful moments, but one of my favorites and a classic quote...
Aslan," said Lucy, "you're bigger."
"That is because you are older, little one," answered he.
"Not because you are?"
"I am not. But every year you grow, you will find me bigger."
praying i always grow and find him bigger...
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Friday, May 23, 2008
i was warned several days ago by one of the new moms who spends time at the play boutique that ari had asked her a lot of questions about her newborn and also about nursing. she told me she was honest with him and tried to encourage him to ask me any further questions. i thanked her and haven't heard anything more about it.....until today:)
ari and another 5-year-old boy were playing in class today as they do every day, but today they each had a baby doll. this is unusual as their favorite past time is shooting, stabbing, bombing, and generally maiming imaginary bad guys. i was encouraged by their tender care to these babies. as the day wore on i started hearing things about feeding the babies. the boys were holding the dolls to their chest and discussing this for a few moments until ari finally erupted with "my nipples are making more milk than your nipples!"
even breast-feeding is a competition to boys.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
1st- make your dough
i used cookie dough mix cuz i got it on sale for $1/bag and cuz i'm trying to use up all my packaged food so i can make more of my own stuff. you can make any kind of cookie, any amount of cookie dough and any recipe you like. i made three bags that claim to make 3 doz ea.
2nd-scoop balls of dough onto a cookie sheet the beauty of this is the cookies won't expand so you can put them almost right next to each other and fill the whole pan. make sure it is a pan that will fit in your freezer. in order to make the balls i like to use a cookie scoop, but mine broke so i used my ice cream scoop
it didn't take much time at all (30 min or so) for my cookie balls to harden enough
i re-used a soup container, but you could use tupperwear, gladwear, ziploc bags, whatever will last in a freezer and you can package your cookies in any number. this way you can pull out 1-2 for a personal snack or a dozen when unexpected company comes over! you just pluck the dough ball out of the freezer, put it on a cookie sheet and bake!! i have 6 in the oven right now:)
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
when i was in middle school i participated in a summer music camp and we performed the musical "oklahoma". while i was singing "where the waving wheat can sure smell sweet and the wind comes rushing down the plain..." i never thought i would visit let alone live in this state we were praising the virtues of, but i find myself doing just that.
sonny has accepted a position as assistant chaplain at casady, a private school in oklahoma city. this decision comes after much time and deliberation as we wrestled with what God would have us do. we feel this position will be more conducive to unity as a family and time spent together and that is why we chose it. we are looking forward to summers to travel and just be together as well as attending church together for the first time in 5 years.
we are so sad to leave the beautiful northwest and most of all the precious people of willamette. they have been so good to us and we love them dearly. my best friend on the planet resides in vancouver and so i will feel another keen loss being so many miles away.
we thank God for the time he gave us here and for what he transformed in our lives during these two years. we look forward to whatever he has for us in oklahoma. it will most likely be more about growing us more into the likeness of his son than about the sweet smelling waving wheat.
Sunday, May 18, 2008
yesterday my husband and dear cousins, irene and jason, took ari to the rainbow trout farm for his first fishing experience. much fun was had by all as this is a farm and catching a fish is pretty much a guarantee if you put your line in the water:)
i don't know if the fish cleaner told him this or if it's just a coincidence that 5-year-old ari is convinced his fish was 5 as well.
Saturday, May 17, 2008
saturday is the day sonny puts the finishing touches on his presentation for teaching junior high sunday school class. he has been taking them through the narrative of scripture starting with "in the beginning". they have been loving it. engaging, learning, making connections...it's a beautiful thing. when i snuck a peak in class one sunday this is what i saw on the screen. i had to share it with you. the brick testament. wow.
Friday, May 16, 2008
Thursday, May 15, 2008
foster care is close to my heart. as i studied God's word through the years and started to see this one phrase repeated over and over..."care for the widows and orphans" i would always think....hmmm, i don't really know any of those. i know there are orphans in romania, africa, and even as close as mexico, but not really around where i live.
well, as i learned more about the american foster system, i realized, these were the orphans. their parents may not be deceased, but they were definitely in need of care and were one of "the least of these" for many reasons.
foster care gets a bad rap. most often it is only covered in the news when there is some scandal and foster parents are abusive or foster children hurt those that take them in. these cases are valid and the system is obviously not working. the fact remains. there are hundreds of thousands of children in our own country whose parents cannot care for them.
i heard an ad campaign once say "not everyone can be a foster parent, but everyone can help a foster child." i believe that to be true. my husband and i have decided for the safety of our children, we will not foster any child older than our youngest. when our children are grown we will be more available to take on higher risk children, but right now we are not able. maybe others aren't able to take in a child at all. there is still much you can do and i believe we are called to do.
we were incredibly blessed to adopt the very first and only foster child we ever had. this will not be the case every time. the way i choose to see it is any time and any love i am able to give to a foster child will be a privilege and more than if i had given up and never tried. these are children who did not ask to be in the situation they are in. they are not old enough to choose for themselves and almost all of them end up repeating the choices their parents made that began the cycle.
the problem is so big, so very complex. i know no one will ever be able to remedy it completely. i really have to take the starfish approach and do the little i can to heal what has been so deeply hurt.
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Monday, May 12, 2008
i wonder if ms. clinton, mr. obama, and mr. maccain would be pursuing the title of president so vigorously if they knew this random fact: "Hail to the Chief" was specifically written for James Madison, because he was so short hat no one ever noticed when he entered the room. "
how's that for humbling?
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Saturday, May 10, 2008
at Ari's preschool class yesterday he made me this card for mother's day. the front was what you see here, m-o-m spelled with his fingerprints and a heart for the o. very special.
what i found when i opened it was even better...
My mom's favorite flower is: "tulip" (correct, again! didn't know he even knew that word)
My mom's favorite music is: "girl music" (don't know what that is, but sonny thinks it's things like nkotb and vanessa carlton as he doesn't count these are real "music")
My mom's favorite book is: "my favorite book" (right, again. all he sees me read is dick and jane and the very hungry caterpillar)
My mom's favorite place is: "mcdonald's" (oh, dear...out of the mouths of babes, huh?)
Friday, May 9, 2008
the last few days i have really been delving in deep into the world of frugal and green blogs (a lot of them are both since being green can save you a lot of green). i have been learning a TON and really getting excited about hunting for deals, getting the most out of coupons and sales, and actually making some things myself? i have found people who make things i would NEVER have thought about making myself and i am intrigued! i will share more with you in coming days, but here's a small step for those of you who may want to start this venture with me.
i know. it comes in packets and you use it in lots of recipes, right? what if you passed over the envelope and just mixed the seasonings with your own two hands? not rocket-science, but i never ever would have dreamed little ol' me could do such a thing. i'm going to try it.
Thursday, May 8, 2008
i've been frequenting frugal blogs as of late and have found a lot of great ideas for making extra cash and saving money on everyday items so that money saved can be used to pay off debt (thank you, dave ramsey) and get finances in order.
i get a rush finding good deals and ways to bring in money to our family budget that are outside of the typical 9-5 . i pocketed 25 bucks today signing up for a new "paypal" type service called RevolutionMoneyExchange today. i also made $10 for the woman whose blog i found this on.
(not a bad deal for 2 minutes of my time:) if you're interested click on the link at the top right of my blog before may 15th.
i now need to log into my ebay account to try and sell some stuff i found lying around and add to our "pay down debt" fund. financial freedom!
Wednesday, May 7, 2008
so several people have asked about my listing of "chicken 'n goop" as one of my favorite foods. it is a recipe my mom got while i was growing up and she didn't remember the name of it. i then dubbed it what it was and now evermore shall be...."chicken and goop". it is the one recipe i have served to almost EVERYONE i know and has always always always received rave reviews. i have made it for one family all the way on up to 75 people and it is always a hit. NOT a low-fat recipe, but definitely easy and a crowd pleaser. for those of you who who'd like to try it, or just know what it is, here's the recipe....
5-6 boneless skinless chicken breasts, thawed
can of cream of mushroom or cream of celery soup
1 pint of heavy whipping cream (liquid)
1/2 packet of dry onion soup
place chicken breasts in casserole dish
sprinkle with dry onion soup and paprika
in separate bowl mix cream of mushroom or celery soup and the whipping cream
pour mixture over chicken
bake for 1 1/2 hours at 350 degrees
sauce will be bubbling and chicken will start to brown on top
serve with rice...the goop is an awesome on it!
Monday, May 5, 2008
Sunday, May 4, 2008
I've been tagged by kristal...
(i must confess i've secretly always wanted to be tagged....so thanks, kristal!)
Four jobs I've had:
1) splash family water park (went out-of-business)
2) cookie connoisseur (went out-of-business)
3) admissions counselor at mbc (still in business)
4) after school reading teacher (school was closed down for not meeting standards for 3 years in a row)
Four movies I've watched more than once:
1) anne of green gables
2) the little mermaid
3) les miserables
4) smoke signals
Four places I've lived:
1) grand rapids, michigan
2) portland, oregon
3) bakersfield, california
4) west linn, oregon
Four TV shows I watch:
1) so you think you can dance (new season premiering this month....yey!!!)
2) cold case
3) john and kate plus eight
4) law and order: ci (only the episodes with vincent d’nofrio)
Four places I've been:
3) niagra falls
4) all the states between michigan and florida
Four people who email me regularly:
1) my bff-heather
2) my boss
4) redbox-to tell me what movies I’ve rented and returned
Four of my favorite foods:
1) Indian food
2) chocoloate chip cookies
3) mcdonlad’s cheeseburgers
4) my mom’s “chicken ‘n goop”
Four places I would love to visit:
1) prince edward’s island
2) israel (only if sonny is my tour guide)
4) alaska (with my dad)
Four things I'm looking forward to in the coming year:
1) new beginnings
2) seeing my ari start kindergarten (dreading it more than looking forward to it)
3) family visits
4) growing in grace and truth
Four friends I'm tagging:
1) heather (doesn’t have a blog yet, but will soon, right, heather?)
4) you! (if you haven’t been tagged and you’re reading this…tag, you’re it!)
Saturday, May 3, 2008
Friday, May 2, 2008
Thursday, May 1, 2008
so-why am i taking up space in my blog with it? apart from the obligatory romance and a few other details ....this story is TRUE! there really was a man named jim ellis and he really did invest his life into teens all others had relegated to the "lost cause" pile. he really did coach them and invest in them and shape their character...and the best part it....HE STILL IS! to this day, over 35 years later, the man is still coaching swimming at the same pool, in the same at-risk neighborhood, and his program at the Marcus Foster pool has sent swimmers to the swimming trials for every U.S. Olympic team since 1992...whoah!
the reason i am telling you all of this is because i want to honor and celebrate not just the accomplishments of this swim team and their athletes and all of the intense work it takes to get to that level, but i want to elevate the man who has given his life to people who others have "thrown away." he goes day in and day out to a low or no-paying job with kids that have not been taught to respect and he pours his life out. thirty-five years. that's something worth talking about. that's a person who deserves our attention, and who in God's economy is a celebrity.