Friday, May 2, 2008

Spent only $27.37!!!!

With usually spending between $100-$150 each week and after making the challenge to myself to work from my stockpile, here is what I purchased this week(sorry no pics, kids helped me put it away!)...

  • 2 -10lb bags of potatoes $4.98
  • 2 Juicy Juice $4.50 (minus 50 cent coupon)
  • 3 pkgs. Azteca flour tortillas $4.59
  • 2 loaves of Aunt Millies Bread $3.19(buy one get one free!)
  • 3 cases of Wild Cherry Pepsi plus a free case of Sierra Mist $11.00 plus $4.80 bottle deposit(the store had the deal of buying 3 cases of any Pepsi product get a case of Sierra Mist free!)

I brought in empty bottles so I had $5.20 bottle refund. So my total after coupon, and bottle refund was $27.37!!!!!(everything I purchased counts as food so there was no sales tax!)

I would have spent less but I had to restock hubby's morning pop/soda supply of Wild Cherry Pepsi!

To check out other's savings this week, head over to BeCentsAble's CentsAble Shopper Show and Tell and MoneySavingMom's Super Saturday Savings!!

Frugal Friday

Its Friday, time again for Frugal Friday! I thought for today I would give an update what I am doing with my stockpile. First off, I want to thank everyone for their comments and their encouragement. I found them very encouraging and helpful! After reading your comments and praying more about the situation, I am challenging myself to do several things...
  • only shop for the "needs" for the next 3 weeks! That means I am not going to do any sale shopping for deals to increase my stockpile.
  • make meals from pantry stockpile
  • make up a full grocery bag for Stamp Out Hunger Campaign
  • communicate better with my hubby as to what I feel we need to do regarding the stockpile.

I am off to good start with my challenge!! I shopped only for the needs that we had for this week! I spent less than $30 in groceries for this week!

I am working at making up menus for the next 3 weeks. Stay tuned I'll be posting those in the weeks to come!

The Stamp Out Hunger Campaign is coming up on May 10th!! I challenge you to be a part of it and stick out a bag of non perishable goods by your mailbox for your postal carrier to pick up for the local food banks!

I have talked to hubby some about the stockpile situation. He has told me that his job is secure so there is no worries about unemployment! He doesn't care that I have gotten the items for free or nearly free. He is more concerned with spending and then seeming "hoarding" when we don't have any more room for any other things. His words were "we have too much stuff!". So we have agreed that I am not doing any shopping other than going after WIC and fresh fruits and veggies for the next few weeks. We are going to bring our stockpile down! When I go to shop again I will need to restock all of our meat and several other things, but that is okay because the stockpiling will become more managable!

I have also agreed with him that I need to put him back into the loop of my shopping errands. When we were first married, we did the shopping and the stockpiling up together. However, over the years, he has just trusted me to do the shopping. Obviously, I need his guidance in this area more than I realized!

So I am working at finding that "happy medium"! It is going to take more than just 3 weeks to find that medium but I think I have started in the right direction.

For other frugal tips, ideas, and resources; head over to Biblical Womanhood!

Weekly Glimpse

Time again for another weekly glimpse! Last week's glimpse, I stated that I was dealing with very bad allergies. I was able to see the doctor, and he prescribed some 180mg Allegra for me! I feel better! I still have the occasional sneezing, blowing the nose, and itchy eyes but not to the extreme that it was before seeing the doctor.

This week has been emotionally draining on me. First attending my Uncle Bill's funeral then having to deal with possibly serving on a jury. However, despite those two things we have made it thru another week of school. Another week closer to finishing our 2007-2008 school year!! My goal is to finish the Friday before Memorial Day. It won't be 180 days but it will be close! In my state, there isn't any standards as to the actual number of days that I have to do "school". I have a feeling though that we will not be done with all of our projects and studies so we will be doing school after Memorial Day as well. We shall see!

Friday(tomorrow) the three older boys are going with hubby to work for "take your child(ren) to work day". Hubby's company was in the middle of a conference when the official/national/local day was taking place last week so they moved it to tomorrow. The boys are excited and it should be interesting to hear their stories of the day.

For what we covered this week in school...
  • 11 yo looked at different medicines and how they help the body for Science. He also studied about "Uncle Sam" for his American Symbol/History. He finished his study of Moses and the Exodus for Bible.
  • 9yo and 7yo went to the land down under this week for our Geography study of the continents. We studied Australia. We also studied marsupials for Science.
  • I think my 9yo is finally getting the hang of basic division. I am wondering if I should push it up a notch and give him some division problems with remainders?!?! I am wondering if he would give me his speech of "its too hard!" "its going to take forever!"

The weather has been nice and my 4yo has decided that going outside isn't that bad when there are friends out to play. During the day when her friends are at school, I have been letting her watch Super Why on PBS. She loves watching that show. I love her watching it because it is a different avenue for her to be learning her letters and even working on some beginning reading skills. The funny thing is that her 18mo brother loves to watch it with her and it is fun watching the two of them sit and watch. My 4yo will interact with the show and my 18mo will watch the show and his sister.

When they are done watching Super Why then they watch Sesame Street. Anyone that knows about these two shows will realize that I "allow" my kids to be in front of the TV for an 1 1/2 hours. However, they actually don't sit and stare at the TV the whole time, sometimes it is just background noise for them as they play with each other. They are also interacting and learning while they watch the shows. It gives me time as well to get my older three boys focused on their work for the day. When the shows are done, the TV goes off til the 6pm News! I have toys and other things that occupy their time while I work with the older boys as well. Those toys are just for the purpose of entertaining while I am "schooling" the older ones. My 4yo is really good at helping me keep her 18mo brother entertained.

So there is a glimpse into this week!! Join me sometime next week as I give you another glimpse!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

My Day in Court!

A couple of weeks ago, I received a juror venire! I was to appear in the local district court for the jury selection process. It was to take 2 to 3 hours of my time.

Today was the day I was to appear in court!

I get there at the stated 1pm time. I sign in and receive $15. Having never done this before, I thought to myself, why the $15??!! I knew that being a juror you got paid but I wasn't a juror yet! I went into the courtroom and sat down among about 45 other people.

I sat there for about 10 minutes before the deputy clerk started to instruct us on what would be happening for the afternoon. Basically, our names had gone into a box and they would be randomly picked...basically pulling a name out of the hat type thing! She also told us that there was going to be 3 cases and each case would need 6 jurors and 2 alternates. I thought to myself that with 3 cases there was going to be no way I was going to be excused from actually serving. Well just before the judge came in, the clerk informed us that there was only going to be one case that needed a jury. This was pleasant news to hear. Now my odds of getting chosen were a little slimmer. It also meant that instead of almost 3 hours in the courtroom with no drinks or bathroom breaks it would be just an hour!

So the jury selection begins, the first eight are in the jury box. After the first round of questions, two are immediately dismissed. So two more names were drawn, they were seated. Immediately, one is dismissed because of her history(the case being tried was a domestic assault trial). This lady was a "victim" of a domestic assault 23 years ago, hence her dismissal. So one more name was drawn and the questioning was done for that juror. After the questioning, the judge announced that the jury was chosen, and the rest of us were free to go.

It was neat to witness the process. The last time, I was in a courtroom was for high school Government class and it was just to see a trial, not to see any of the process preceeding the trial. It would have been neat too if I could have taken my 11yo and 9yo with me to see the process. About a month ago, my 11yo was studying about the judicial system. I am sure that he would have loved to see it in action rather than just reading about it. I might just have to take the judge up on his offer today and write him asking if we could come and sit in on the another juror processing or even on a trial.

That was my day/afternoon in court!

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Just a Notice

I am keeping this entry at the top this week. For new posts scroll down...

I am not sure how much posting I am going to be doing here this week....

I have my Uncle Bill's funeral to attend on Wednesday morning which is 2 hours away from my house.

I also will be doing my civic duty this week....sitting at the local district courthouse on Thursday afternoon waiting to see if I am selected for jury duty.

Then you add in needing to keep busy with all my wifely and motherly duties!

These three things are going to make for a busy week hence my letting everyone know why my quietness! :)

Weblink Wednesday

Energy Information Administration--Kids Page

Join “Energy Ant” learning about energy! Learn facts on the sources, uses, science and saving of energy. Take a look back in history as to energy’s beginnings and along the way meet famous people like Isaac Newton, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford and many more who contributed to the science of energy. There are classroom activities that include stories, hands-on activities (including Science Fair ideas), and research articles for all students (K-12) and learning styles. There is even a glossary for all the words that deal with energy on the site! When the learning is done, the learned knowledge can be used for fun and games, where there are puzzles, riddles, follow “Energy Ant” on some of his adventures to cool energy sites around the United States and more.

Also join Val at Homeschooling with Encouragement for more Weblinks!

Works for Me Wednesday

Ever find that your kids are complaining at you that they just had that yesterday for lunch? Or they are refusing to eat the leftovers that you placed in front of them?! After my lunch ideas yesterday, I thought I would tell you how I take that list and use it to work for me!

I find that if they have had something already once that week, the likelihood of them having it again is very slim! I guess that is where I find having menus made up and where they are getting followed consistently helps alot! LOL! That way the things that I have gotten for lunches doesn't all disappear in 2-3 days. I found that THE "trick" to getting my kids to eat leftovers.... fix extra of their favorite meals, around here it is pizza, saucy pork chops, grilled chicken, tacos.

Here is a sample of how I have planned my summer lunch menus....One day is "picnic day" usually consists of cold sandwich, chips, carrot sticks and drink. One day is "grill day" usually consists of a hotdog, potato leftover, apple slices, and drink. One day is "leftover day" whatever meal last week I made enough leftovers for them to have! One day is "hot lunch day" which is usually hot sandwich, chips or soup(or ramen noodles), veggie, and drink. One day is "pizza day" usually pizza rolls but about every other week it is leftover homemade pizza. The other two days(Sat. and Sun) are usually a toss up between leftovers or cold sandwich and chips. Soooo I only plan on having deli type meat available for lunches two days/week. If I don't have deli meat then I use cold chicken or beef to make sandwiches. When I use cold chicken, if I only have 2 pieces of grilled chicken left I take them and butterfly slice them so I get 4 slices and then make sandwiches for them.

If I don't have chips then I will take some leftover mashed potatoes and instead of just heating them up! I make fried mashed potatoes. I just put a little margarine in a skillet and then dump in a little minced onion and saute it a bit or onion powder(if I don't have any onion) and then I put the mashed potatoes in the skillet and heat them through. It makes them like potato cakes BUT I don't make them into actual cakes cause I don't add eggs or flour to the potatoes OR shape them into cakes. My kids love these with a bit of catsup on them! I found fixing these with hotdogs or when we have leftover burgers fills them up more than if they have chips.

This is what works for me when dealing with daily lunches. To see what works for others head over to Rocks in My Dryer!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Kitchen Tip Tuesdays

Ever get tired of eating the same old thing every day for lunch? Do your kids complain about having peanut butter and jelly sandwiches again? Well here is some ideas to help that rut you might be in!!

Fried egg sandwiches

Mini homemade pizzas

Egg salad sandwiches

Chicken/Tuna salad sandwiches

Homemade pita bread stuffed with any number of things

Salad with grilled chicken

Hot Dogs/Coneys

Grilled cheese sandwiches

Chili beans, toss some cheese, salsa and tortilla chips and you got nachos

Make up a bunch of meatballs and freeze. Get some hoagie rolls and spaghetti sauce and make meatball subs.

Make up a bunch of spaghetti and let them have at it.

Egg burritos

Salad with a bit of chicken chunks and boiled eggs

Homemade tortillas throw in some chili

Leftover pasta with whatever. I've thrown leftover pasta and chicken together. Add chopped veggies or have them on the side, drizzle with a vinagriette.

Veggie Chicken noodle soup(leftover chicken and veggies with pasta and broth)

French toast and fruit

Bean and cheese burritos

Chicken quesadillas(cut up leftover chicken, add salsa or taco sauce to it, put on one side of a tortilla shell top with cheese, fold over tortilla shell, melt some butter or use olive oil in a hot skillet then put quesadilla in the skillet and lightly brown both sides)

Cheese quesadillas

Baked potatoes with leftover chili or taco meat

For other kitchen tips, ideas, or resources....head over to Tammy's Recipes

Monday, April 28, 2008

Menu Plan Monday 4/27-5/3

**Another week is upon us so that means it is time for another menu plan! This is just a plan and it could change on the cook’s whim!

This week is going to be a difficult week, my uncle passed away on Saturday so hubby and I have to travel 2 hours away for a funeral on Wednesday. The kids will be left with some friends for the day. Thursday afternoon, I will be sitting at the local district courthouse to see if I will be selected to serve on a jury. I am once again working at reducing my pantry stock so I am shopping from home this week to get meals on the table. The only shopping that I will need to do this week is for fresh fruits and veggies, WIC and a “Sam’s run” for a few things that I purchase in bulk.

Lunches listed are for the kids and me. Hubby usually takes dinner leftovers each day.

A special thanks to Laura-Organizing Junkie for hosting Menu Plan Monday! Need help with your menus, go check other delicious meal plans that have been linked at her site! **

Sunday (4-27)
Breakfast: eggs, sausage links, cinnamon rolls and "Mom McBiscuits"
Lunch: leftovers and chicken noodle soup
Dinner: Arby’s (after church)
Snack: sandwiches

Monday (4-28)
Breakfast: cereal and leftover cinnamon rolls
Lunch: sandwich, chips, apple slices and carrot sticks
Dinner: Oven Fried Chicken(#5), baked taters, corn on the cob
Snack: snack basket

Tuesday (4-29)
Breakfast: waffles and sausage links
Lunch: leftovers
Dinner: spaghetti, salad, and garlic toast
Snack: cookies & milk

Wednesday (4-30)
Breakfast: “Cook’s Choice”
Lunch: gone to funeral
Dinner: gone to funeral
Snack: snack basket

Thursday (5-1)
Breakfast: cereal and bagels
Lunch: sandwich, chips, apple slices and carrot sticks
Dinner: skillet chicken with gravy, mashed taters, corn
Snack: snack basket

Friday (5-2)Breakfast: cereal and toast
Lunch: pizza rolls
Dinner: Chicken Veggie Stew (#8), and homemade honey oatmeal rolls(carry over from last week!)
Snack: homemade chocolate shakes

Saturday (5-3)
Breakfast: “Cook’s Choice”
Lunch: chicken nuggets and chips
Dinner: burgers and fries
Snack: popcorn or snack basket

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Singing Sunday

Hillsong United - Lead Me To The Cross

Savior I come
Quiet my soul remember
Redemptions hill
Where Your blood was spilled
For my ransom
Everything I once held dear
I count it all as lost

Lead me to the cross
Where Your love poured out
Bring me to my knees
Lord I lay me down
Rid me of myself
I belong to You
Oh Lead me, lead me to the cross

You were as I
Tempted and trialed
The word became flesh
Bore my sin and death
Now you're risen
Everything I once held dear
I count it all as lost

Lead me to the cross
Where Your love poured out
Bring me to my knees
Lord I lay me down
Rid me of myself
I belong to You
Oh Lead me, lead me to the cross

To your heart
To your heart
Lead me to your heart
Lead me to your heart