Sunday, March 30, 2014

Frugal Five

I don't feel like I have been very frugal lately.  Money has been flying out of our hands as we purchased new furniture, took the truck in for some work and purchased summer clothing for Megan.  It has to stop!

 I am getting back at it and here are a few frugal things.

#1 I purchased Valentine's for next year for $0.30.
#2 I started to clip and print coupons again.  They aren't as great as they use to be and I have noticed that the extreme coupon shows have caused policies to change.  I was really burnt out and stopped using them, but since every penny counts so I am back to clipping.
#3 Chuck had to run to CVS and I reminded him to scan our ECB card.  A coupon printed for a free roll of paper towels. 
#4 There is an extended family vacation planned for this summer and I have been using my paperback swap credits to gather books. 
#5 I hit Target up for some sale promotions. 
They had a deal that if you purchased two packages of toilet paper you received a $5 gift card.  I used a couple of coupons and my Red Card (not a credit card, but a debit card and saved 5%) for a total of $25.86 and walked away with the gift card.  I know that for many that is more then you would pay for TP. So I will lay it out there and admit that we are toilet paper snobs. 
 I then used the gift card toward the cereal deal.  Select Kellogg's cereal were B1G1F.  The price was $2.94 each for an original total of $17.64.  From that $8.82 was taken off for the BIGIF and I used 3/$1 off 2 coupons (no longer available) making my total $5.82 then my Red Card took off $0.20.  Leaving my total due $5.53. I used the $5 gift card from the toilet paper deal and paid $0.53 for six boxes of cereal!
So there you go.  I hope this encourages you to do things to save money.  The old adage that every penny counts seems to apply more and more as I see prices of just about everything increase.  I am not sure I will have five things to post about every week as many times my frugal accomplishment is simply staying home and making do with what I have.  I find it encouraging to hear about others frugal adventures. 
May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Gardening... Just the Beginning

I have been itching to get into the garden. With the winter we have had that hasn't been possible. Friday was a beautiful day and we spent most of the afternoon out working in the yard. I mentioned that I was ready to plant some early spring things in the raised beds. Even though it was much cooler on Saturday my wonderful husband worked them up so I could get my hands dirty.  Yeah!

He also took some time to drill some holes for me.  Last year I saw this post  and thought it was a great idea.  The list price was $49... no way!  I picked up a yardstick for $0.25 with hopes of making my own.

I also grabbed a dowel out of hubby's scrap wood container and made a stick to make holes for my seeds.  I marked inch marks on the dowel. 
It works wonderful!
It was used to plant some peas.
Cabbage plants and two kind of lettuce were also planted.
As we are still having some cold weather I really wanted to cover this bed with a frost cover.  We didn't have enough left from last year so it was on to plan B.
Good ol' Mason jars.  Oh how I love them! 
Are you itching to get in the dirt?  I would love to hear if you have started and what you are planting.
May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Joy in the Ordinary

Look around, really look around and you will find joy... joy in the everyday... joy in the ordinary things.

Tomato seedlings thriving.

Homemade bread crumbs for my pantry.
Lots of laundry activities.  Megan is scrubbing stains from some of her shirts.
Making laundry soap,

fabric softener and

stain remover. 

Cutting out what feels like a thousand crowns (really 20) for King Solomon ask for wisdom lesson on Sunday. 
Find happiness in the ordinary; it makes for a pleasant life and a serene heart. ~ Granny Willodene
May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Cinnamon Coffee Cake

Since I showed my ingredients ready to go for Sunday morning breakfast I thought I would share what I made.
This coffee cake is mmm mmm good!
3 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 Tbs baking powder
1 1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup melted butter
1 cup butter softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 Tbs cinnamon
2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350*.  Grease two 8 in cake pans and line the bottom with waxed paper. 
Mix flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, milk, eggs, vanilla and 1/4 cup melted butter.  Divide between the two pans.
Cream 1 cup butter, brown sugar and cinnamon. Drop by tablespoons onto cake and then swirl with a knife. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes then remove from pans to cooling rack. 
Mix powered sugar, 1/4 cup milk and 1 tsp vanilla.  Drizzle over cooled cakes.
One we didn't glaze and it went into the freeze for another day.  Enjoy!
May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

For the Love of Tulips

Something special...
Just because they bring me joy.
Just because they are my favorite.
Just because they are beautiful. 
Just because they remind me that a new season is on the way. 
May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Come Along

Saturday morning I woke to sunshine and birds singing.  Oh yeah, spring is just around the corner!  I bounced out of bed at 7:30 and was ready to get some things done.
I spent a large chunk of the morning looking through pictures.  A lady that is in our adoption group is making a slide show to celebrate the upcoming Gotcha Day. 

It was fun going down memory lane and made me realize once again how quickly time is passing. 
Then we loaded up the van and headed out.  The first stop was to drop some things off at the monthly hazardous recycle.
Then it was to Lowe's for a kids workshop.
While we were there we picked up a few things.
We picked up a quick lunch and made couple stops before hitting the grocery store.
We only needed some fresh fruit and veggies and then picked up something for dinner.
Once home it was time to get everything put away.  One of our stops was to pick up some summer shirts for myself. 
I really needed these as most of my current summer shirts have developed holes.  While I put things away and tidied up a few things Megan and Chuck headed out to put a few things away in the shed. 
Before dinner Megan worked on her spelling and then practiced the piano.
We are really longing for warmer days and time outside.  Temperatures above freezing and sunshine was enough to convince us to fire up the grill. 

Of course there is always housework to be done.  I washed four loads of laundry.

Ran the vacuum for the fifth time in three days. Yikes!
Then it was time to settle down for the evening.  Megan took a shower and then we popped some corn and enjoyed a movie.
Before bed we have been reading a loud the Little House books and I ordered this since we finished Little House on the Prairie
Then it was off to bed for Megan.  I started a coffee cake for Sunday morning and then it wasn't long before I was off to bed myself.
I know daylight savings time only changes by an hour but it really messes me up.  I knew I would need to get to bed so I would be fresh for church.  I hope you enjoyed a coming along for a little peek into my Saturday.
May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

A New Month

We were expecting March to come in like a big lion. Instead I guess you could say it ended up coming in like a cub. Instead of 12 inches of snow we ended up with a few inches. I can't say that I was disappointed.
I guess you could say that we have started our spring cleaning.
In anticipation for new living room furniture every inch of the room was cleaned.  Including shampooing the carpet thanks to my great husband.
Besides cleaning and shopping for furniture I spent some time shopping for new throw pillows.  I couldn't find any I like.  Most of the patterns I am seeing are bold, modern prints.  Not exactly my taste.  I ended up purchasing a few inexpensive pillows and will recover them.  This is the fabric I will be using. 
If it all goes according to plan (ha!) I will be spending the next few days whipping up pillows.  Oh and waiting for the weather to warm up.  I don't know about you but I have some projects I would like to do.  Most of them involve paint and need warmer temperatures.  So let's all start thinking spring or at least hoping for normal temperatures.  :)
May your day be filled with joy and contentment!