Friday, September 16, 2011

{ innocence of a child }

i woke up to a phone call this morning from James saying he will be late getting back in. the small boat they took had to turn around because the weather is too bad. i checked wunderground, and it showed nothing. i switched it to infared, and it was all yellow and just sitting over the water off VB. i guess our lunch date will have to be postponed until another day. i'm a little bummed.

last night as i was reading through facebook, i continued to think about what a great communication tool it really could be. that is if the person on the receiving end wanted to hear what you have to say, or take the advise you had to give. maybe not even so much as to take it... but at least know options are there. (or vice versa)

i'm angry. i'm angry at the loss of my friend and was caught off guard as i let the tears flow. they didn't stop. and when i wanted them to... they still did not stop. so when O, who was reading on the couch with his back towards me, asked me a question and i couldn't answer because i was sniffing up snot, i was caught off guard. and when he came to console me, which he does so freely, all i could do is cry harder. 

when i got my barings straight, and all i could muster up is that i'd lost a friend. O asked if someone doesn't want to be my friend, and proceeded to tell me that his old friend M doesn't want to be friends with him anymore now that they are in a new class. (what an opportunity to talk... when your child sees you at your most vulernable time.) and as we progress in our conversation, he asks so innocently "did he get lost and can't find his way back home?"

yes. yes, my dear child. lost. but praying he did find his way home. 


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Lost

I've lost me. Somewhere along the lines of being a mom and wife, I've lost me.

My hair is not done.

My weight has soared.

Where have I gone?

I want me.

Come out. Come out... Wherever you are!

Me, please return in the condition you were so many moons ago.

Our heart needs it.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

{On the return}

Looking forward to posting again. After this weekend, and school starting back for the kids, I will have much more time.

I'm also looking forward to hearing from you all, again.

Be blessed.

T

Monday, May 23, 2011

Getting the AXE!

It's been a couple of months since Thomas started to ask for me to replenish his "AXE" stash. It brings back so many memories of working at Canyon Hill Center, some of you may recall incidents too. The odor of AXE will forever be etched into my mind. The big day came yesterday when coupons for AXE @ a B1G1 came in the paper. The scents he chose, I'm hoping, won't make me relive those moments all over again from days ago.


I picked all of this up for $13.84. Usually I am close to FREE, but because the Catalina's weren't printing properly, my hard work of scanning, gathering, planning and shopping was foiled.

I got the AXE for free. It was a 3/$12 deal. I had (2) B1G1 Q and (2) $1 off Q. I also had $6 in Register Rewards from Friday's purchase. All I paid was the tax. I EARNED $4 in RR.

This is the order I did the transaction in. I did EIGHT seperate transactions, and asked the cashier to call someone over to the cosmetics counter to check me out. That way I wasn't holding up any line.

1. Axe 3/$12- (2)B1G1Q, (2)$1Q, $6 RR = $1.01 tax , recvd $4 RR
2. Advil 2/$10- (1) $4Q on 2, $4 RR= $1.98, recvd $5RR
3. Colgate Toothpaste 2/$7- (2) $1Q, $5RR= $.26tax, recvd $3RR
4. Advil 2/$10= $4Q, $3 RR= $2.98, recvd $5 RR
5. Colgate Toothpaste 2/$7, and silly band for filler- (2) $1Q, $5 RR= $.46 tax, recvd $3 RR
6. Suave lotion 4/$12 - (2) B1G1 Q, $3RR=$3.71, recvd $3 RR
7. Advil 2/$10- $4Q, $3RR=$2.98, recvd $5 RR
8. Colgate Toothpaste 2/$7, and silly band for filler- (2) $1Q, $5 RR= $.46, recvd $3 RR

I paid $13.84 OOP for $99.49 worth of personal items we will use. I also received a $3 RR that I haven't used yet. That is an 86% savings!!

Not bad for a couple hours worth of work.

Thanks for reading. Hope it helps you to do some deals this week at Walgreens.

be blessed


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Couponing 101

Hey there!!

I've taken a hiatus from blogging while starting my new job. I don't have near as much time to post as I did before. I did want to touch on a couple of things that were brought to my attention last night while talking with my mom. (God bless her soul for starting to coupon!!)

Most people make a list of the groceries they need and head to the store. What you have just done is make a list of everything that is not on sale at the store. We need to step back and realize that groceries go on sale. They all have a "rock bottom low price", and we want to focus on only buying groceries when they are at that rock bottom price. Don't worry it's pretty easy, in most areas they follow a cycle roughly 6 weeks long. That means if we see a rock bottom price this week then buy enough of that item to last 6 weeks. That way you don't have to go back and pay the full retail price in between. Does that make sense?

So how do you know? Good question! I'm glad you asked!! When I first started posting I had asked for some feedback to let me know where you were shopping. I was willing to help out and post the sales that were in your area. I only received a few replies, so honestly I didn't think anything of it after that. When talking to my mom yesterday, it became apparent that there are few and far between bloggers that cover your area. I did find one called Little House on the Prairie Living. She has some local stores listed and some things you might find. MIND YOU... this is a LOT of work, so if you use her site, give her some feedback that you are using her site, OR she might stop posting.

One site that I use all the time is called Southern Savers. You can find drugstore buys here that include, but are not limited to Walgreens and CVS. I also use The Coupon Challenge, and The Krazy Coupon Lady.

These websites will provide you with all the sales you could possibly dream about for groceries and personal care items. Most have some links to department store savings too. The work is done for you. All you have to do is pull/clip the coupon and go use it!!

Alright, getting on with the program....


Stocking up:

Sales on items usually run in 6-8 week cycles. This means that when you see an item on sale, adding a coupon, and it making it FREE or close to FREE you should be stocking up. (I get FIVE papers in addition to my home delivery because of this. How can you stock up if you don't have enough coupons??)

You could, buy a box of cereal for $4 a box, every week for six weeks and you’re out $24!
or
Buy six boxes of cereal at their rock bottom price and use coupons. Pay only $6 total for six boxes of cereal.
You save $18 by purchasing them at the right time and stocking up.

Does THIS make sense?? Right now our Stock pile on cereal is HUGE... Our boys will eat for an afternoon snack, and I don't have to tell them anymore "Save it for Breakfast because that's all we have".

Add On The Coupons:

If you buy when the items is at its lowest price AND use coupons, you save a bundle! Here's how it works:


credit here


GETTING ORGANIZED:

You need to have some sort of organization that way you know where and what you have for coupons. I started out with a photo journal book. Three of them, actually. I filed them accordingly: Perishables, Non-Perishables, and Household Goods ie.. toothpaste, body wash, TP, tampoons, etc..


Then James purchased a binder with baseball card holders for me and I've been using that. I have 60 pages of card holders with 9 slots on each page. This allows me to view EVERY coupon that I have. I am giving a thought to using an accordian style folder for inserts. Using this method, you just clip the coupon you need without cutting every one at one time, and keep the rest stored by date received. (I cut them anyway because we are sending to Japan. Our total right now is over $3400 to be sent to a naval base in Japan because they can use up to SIX months after the expiration date. I still have one VS bag to go through and that will probably put our total at $4000!)

Most important, you should just organize to whatever fits your lifestyle. YOU are the one who is doing the shopping.

NOW PUT IT ALL TOGETHER:


1.Save the inserts on Sunday

2.Go to the website that does your match-ups

3.Get the Coupons together (Either clipped or from accordian file)

4.Print out your shopping list

5.GO SHOPPING!!

Good luck!

be blessed!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Kroger and Harris Teeter Shopping Trip

Monday I went to Kroger, and of course they were sold out of everything. T and a his friend H went with me, and thought it was odd that we were leaving with nothing. That's how I roll, usually. If you aren't stocked with 50% of what I need, I won't buy anything. You've just wasted my time coming to your store.

I spoke with a store associate and said that they would get a truck in yesterday and they would be stocked back up. So I made a trip to make sure that I was able to get the Nivea men's body wash for FREE. I also picked up a couple of bags of Boulder potatoe chips, a couple of bags of BF Snackerz, and then they OWED me .24 for taking the stuff out of their store. They don't pay out overages, so I had to buy something else. I bought 2 more Snackerz and used 1 more coupon, (which didn't make the checker at the next register too happy). My total was $.34.

Here's the deal... I don't usually buy candy at our house, so for the boys to get a treat... It was worth it!

They were actually out of some stuff I wanted, but said they would be putting it out in the next hour, so of course I had to go back. Right??

So here's how it played out... After a swim with J in the afternoon, Climb with O, dinner done and over (Pizza night splurge) I gathered my Qbook and went back out. This is what I found:
{10} Capri Sun - $14.90
{10} Kraft BBQ sauce (4 going to food pantry) FREE
{5} 8oz  KoolAid/CountryTime lemonade FREE (coupon was on BBQ sauce and on sale to boot)
{3} Crest pro-health toothpaste for kids (1 going to food pantry) FREE
{4} Clorox 2 stain remover - (1 going to food pantry) $2.00 (.50ea)
{2} Sister Schuster frozen rolls - $.98 (.49 ea)
{2} 44oz Classico pasta sauce $3.98 (1.99 ea)
{2} Kashi Cereal - $1.98 (.99 ea)
{1} Kraft Homestyle MacnCheese- $.50

This total came out to be around $25 with tax.



So, are you NOW ready to learn? 

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Printable Coupons

Here are some printables that I have found this morning. If the links should happen to not work, please let me know. Thanks. I will be adding as I find them. One thing I will add... When printing a "bricks coupon" you can use your history back drop-down box, and select print coupon, again. It will print one more time for you. Most bricks coupons you can print {2} of.


Lean Cuisine (expires 4/29)
Oscar Mayer (fb) coupon
Cheez It (baby swiss)
Cheez It Baked Snack Crackers
Playtex Gentle Glide Tampons
Velveta Spicy Buffalo loaf
Dole Fruit Bowls, Gels, or Parfaits (4)
Dole Fruit Bowls, Gels or Parfaits (6)
Snapple Tea 6 pak
Lysol $1 off (sign up may be required)
Glad Force Flex Trash Bags (bricks coupon)
Glad Force Flex (clorox.kewlbox.com)
Athenos Hummus (like FB page, print coupon)
Clorox toilet bowl cleaner (print two and use at walgreens)
Clorax 2 stain remover (bricks coupons, so make sure you get 2!)
Desitin
Friskie's dry cat food
True Lemon or Lime
Cottonelle Bathroom Tissue

Is there something you are needing a coupon for that I might help you find? Claritin, Allegra, Diapers, baby items, flowers for your honey? Just let me know.
be blessed

t


Super Double Days

Everything I had read yesterday about the Super Double Days at Harris Teeter compared the morning shopping to morning shopping on Black Friday. It just wasn't that way at our HT store.

I don't know if I feel let down or elated that our shelves were fully stocked. Clearly I wasn't the ONLY one in the store shopping this morning at 530 am, but there wasn't a MOB like I assume there will be in Nashville or in the Carolinas.

Anyway, this is what I picked up for $13.78 this morning.


{2} Wheat Thins Sticks Chipotle Pepper ($1 each)
{2} JnJ Shampoo ($1 each)
{4} Lysol toilet bowl cleaner {a must for having boys!} (.50 each)
{4} Lysol cleaning wipes (.50 each)
{2} Seventh Generation dish soap (Free)
{1} Homestyle MacnCheese (.50)
{1} Smart Balance fatfree milk (.50)
{2} Ritz Munchables, sour cream n onion & chipotle. ($1 each)
{3} Balance bars (.30 each)

I saved $25.03 for using my VIC card, but more importantly I saved $28.98 with coupons. That's a $54.01 savings!!  That is nearly 80% savings!!

I do need to reiterate one thing. Just because we are SAVING this money on purchases, doesn't mean we HAD the money to spend on everything in the first place. I am trying to maximize the funds we DO have to spend. I still am not working yet. The economy is tough. Fuel prices have skyrocketed the last 30+ days. We don't have a choice. This is what I need to do for our family. And, it really is fun to save and get such great deals.

be blessed, truly in the heart of Jesus

t

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Couponing 101


For the last few weeks I am sure you have been inundated with the amount of facebook postings that have been occuring as I link up. I won't apologize. I am super excited about saving money, and I hope I am encouraging you to do the same.

I used to think that coupons were hard to keep track of, too time consuming, and I wasn’t saving enough for the trouble. Am I wasting my time cutting them on Sundays, and printing, and looking for that special item in the store?

Product manufacturers spend billions of dollars every year to supply us all with coupons and more than half the time they don’t get used. I will tell you straight up that three weeks ago I started to do couponing again, and I found a stack of expired coupons in the desk drawer that I had left that expired in December! {Horrified I was for giving up all that money!}(BTW... if you don't use your coupons, I would be happy to send a SASE to you so you could mail them back to me in return.)

I guess I have been lucky that I haven't had a cashier give me a hard time. I've read many things scenarios where customers hand over 25-50-100 coupons and the cashiers sigh, and others tap their feet all in a hurry. I have to wonder if they, too, know that time is money.

The boys have their video games. Couponing is becoming mine. All the while I save money for our family.
You start off slow and as you do it more, you become knowledgeable of all of the In’s and Outs and before you know it YOU ARE SAVING MONEY LIKE CRAZY!

WHERE DO I GET THE BEST COUPONS?

The best places to get coupons are of course the Sunday paper, but there are many websites and magazines that provide excellent coupons.

SUNDAY PAPER: Last week was the first of our Sunday paper being resumed. NO COUPONS were in the paper though, and I knew that was going to happen. However, I am totally stoked about all the coupons that will be in the May 1st paper. You can find a list of what to expect here at the sunday coupon preview. I also learned yesterday that my Dollar Tree has papers for... YES, a DOLLAR. I will be there on Sunday bright and early.
PRINTABLE COUPONS: You can always check out on the Coupons.com and see if there are any coupons that appeal to you. Print what you want, but in most cases there a limits set as 2 per printer and there are national limits so I will print these (the ones that I know I will use) and save them until a sale comes up. Check out the Coupon Network which has catalina offers that I have talked about before. You can go to Redplum and Smart SourceThekrazycouponlady has provided a list of printable coupons. You may have to sign up for the product info or register for the product site, but totally worth it for saving money. It is always an option to use your computer savvy talents and search for printable coupons.

MAGAZINES: I pick up the ALL YOU magazine which features coupons on almost every page, but also gives a lot of recipes and advice like most womens magazines. You can subscribe to it and save around $.50 per issue. Woman's Day also has coupons. (I'm sure there are more)
OTHER PLACES TO FIND COUPONS: When you are walking around the store, keep on the look out for peelies (coupons that are peelable off a product), blinkies (coupons that are in blinking machines near a product) and hangtags (coupons either hanging on or around a product). Another of my favorite places to get coupons for items I could possibly need is Couponsthingsbydede.  For a small fee you can get the coupons you need, when you need them. It can be a lot less expensive to do it this way than to buy additional papers, and they are already clipped! (So there really is no reason you should NOT be couponing) ;o)

HOW DO I KNOW WHAT COUPONS TO KEEP?

First and foremost…you CAN NOT be brand loyal and save a lot of money. You have to be flexible. When going though coupons and deciding which ones to clip and keep, think to yourself…If I might use the item in the coupon and I can get it for really cheap, or better... FREE, then I clip and keep it. It’s that simple…I DON’T have to buy it, but if a sale comes up and I want to try it out and I can get it cheap to free, why not keep the coupon.

WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO STORE/KEEP MY COUPONS?

It really depends on your personal organization habits. I started with a three small $1 photo albums from Walmart. They have the see through pages, and I could easily turn to whatever I needed by being able to view the coupons. In two weeks I had graduated to a notebook that has baseball trading card dividers and I keep separate coupons in each trading card slot. I haven't got dividers in them, YET. But I am working on it.
Another method is keeping the coupon inserts in a notebook and marking them with insert name and date. This is another method I know some use so when you see a posting on my blog or afullcups blog or thekrazycouponlady's blog, you know exactly where to get them. For example 4/17 SS would be April 17 Smart Source insert. You would pull it and find the coupon, instead of cutting them all out at once.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A STORE COUPON and A MANUFACTURER COUPON?

A store coupon is a coupon that can only be used at that particular store. For instance, if it has the target logo on it, it might say at the top Target Coupon, same with Walgreens in ad coupons. The nice thing about these coupons, is that you can stack them with a manufacturer coupon. A manufacturer coupon will state that on the coupon and can be redeemed at any store that accepts coupons.

Now that you have your coupons, then it is time to match them with sale ads. The absolute best scenario is SALE+STORE COUPON+MANUFACTURER COUPON. That is when you save the most.

So you have got your coupon stockpile going.  Now it is time to work on your product stockpile. When items are on sale, and you can get them for dirt cheap or our favorite word... FREE, then you should stock up. Any paper products you use, personal hygiene products (Walgreens is really good about having razors on sale), cereal... etc... You know what you need better than I. Right now I've been on a yogurt kick because I've been getting it so cheap!

Keep your eye out for the sales, the same stuff seems to go on sale every 3-4 months. So if you miss a sale, don’t worry, chances are it will come back around.

Please remember to be considerate when shopping. When I shop at Walgreens for instance, I will shop either early in the morning or later in the night.  Also, be organized with your coupons, have them ready to go at check out. Usually when I am shopping, I pick out the item and put it in my cart, I will double check the coupon make sure I am getting the right thing and quantity and check the expiration date. If it is all good, I throw it in the bottom of may cart. When I go to check out, I unload all my items and all the coupons I will be using are right there and ready to go.

One more important thing. The overseas military bases can use expired coupons up to 6 months AFTER they have expired. I will be sending a package once a month to Japan. If you would like to include your expired coupons or any you would not use, please send them to me. OR if you would rather, find a base that you can send them to. They appreciate it, and it's just another way to show your support for the people who are keeping you free.
If you have ANY questions, please drop me a note here or send me an email.

I can't wait to hear how things are going for you, so leave a little note if you don't mind just so I know who I am writing to. (HI mom!! You are always so good about leaving a note! Thank you for believing in me!!)

be blessed

t

New Walgreens Coupon Booklets out May 1st.

The first of every month means there are new savings at Walgreens. Sometimes I find that the coupon booklet from Walgreens has many of the coupons that come in the Sunday paper, which means they are STACKABLE.

What does that mean? It means that you can use Walgreens in-store coupon with the manufacturer coupon to create the most savings.

Here is a preview of what you might expect to find in the MAY 2011 Walgreens coupon booklet. It is located in the front of the store right when you walk in.

What are you saving on today?

be blessed

t

Monday, April 25, 2011

Walgreens

A reward card is not needed, but they are pushing for one for better savings. (pilot program I was told). And even if they offer you one, you don't need it to get the sale prices. BUT it will give you extra rewards for your loyalty to their store, and not their main competitor, CVS.

Walgreens is a good choice for us. It's super close to our house. Since starting couponing two weeks ago, we have saved $115.38 just by shopping for things we need and things we will use. OOP was $28.72. This doesn't include the very first time we went because we really didn't know what we were doing. HOWEVER, you get the math, right??

I do not get paid from Walgreens to tell you that they have awesome deals going on there, EVERY WEEK!!

I guess it just comes down to one four letter word. WILL. Do you have the will within yourself to WANT to save money for your family?

Here are this week’s Walgreens deals. Pricing is valid 4/24 – 4/30.  (Thank you tKCL for providing this)

The first week, when I had just started, I used theKrazyCouponLady everyday. Now, I know how to look for the deals on my own. YES, it took alot of time. YES, my husband always wondered if I was coming to bed before midnight for that week. YES... It is all worth the time I put in. BUT... this resource is out there if you want to use it. I highly recommend checking it out.



REMEMBER.... you can't expect to go get the deals today, when you haven't started clipping. You can order coupons through clipping services or ebay if you just really don't have the time to clip.

What are you saving on today? Have you started to think about how much you will be able to save in May by clipping this Sunday's coupons? It's gunna be a big stack, and if you don't want yours, I will gladly take them. (I'll even send a SASE!!)

Tell me what you need from me so I can help you keep your hard earned dollars in your pocket.

be blessed

t






What you can expect

In the month of May, there will be a lot of savings on BBQ items. The month doesn't start until next week, but why wait to get organized? Below is a compiled list of months and predictable sales that you could expect.

 January:

National Oatmeal Month: Quaker

Diet Foods including: Healthy Choice, South Beach, Lean Cuisine, Special K, Kashi, Smart Start, 100 Calorie Packs

Super Bowl Sunday: Pepsi, Coke, Chips, Dips, Cheese, sandwich items, crackers, snacks, wings

Seasonal Produce: Oranges, Pears,Grapefruit, Tangerines, Broccoli, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chard, Collards, Kale, Kiwi, Avocado, Cabbage, Spinach

Clearance: Christmas Decorations, Toys, Wrapping Papers,

Winter Health: Cold Medicines and Vitamins

February:

National Canned Food Month: Canned Fruit, Vegetables, meats: Tuna, chicken, salmon, pie fillings

National Hot Breakfast Month: Malt O Meal, Oatmeal, Eggo Waffles, Syrup

Valentines: Chocolate, Hershey’s, KY Lubricant, etc

Chinese New Year: Soy Sauce, Teriyaki Sauce, Noodles

Seasonal Produce: Artichoke, Asparagus, Raspberries, Potatoes, Strawberries, Broccoli, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chard, Collards, Kale, Kiwi, Avocado, Spinach

March:

Frozen Food Month: Frozen Meals, TGI Fridays, Contessa, Foster Farms Chicken, Eggo, Sara Lee, Healthy Choice, DiGiorno, Freschetta, Breyers, Dreyers, Marie Callendars

Seasonal Produce: Artichoke, Asparagus, Avocado, Haas, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chard, Collards, Fennel, Kale, Leek, Lemon, Lime, Mushrooms, Onions, Spring, Orange, Peas, Radish, Rhubarb, Spinach, Strawberries, Tangerine

April:

Easter: Ham, Eggs, Some Baking Supplies: sugar, spices, baking mixes, chocolate chips

Earth Day: Organic foods, Energy saver

Seasonal Produce: Artichokes, Asparagus, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbages, Carrots, Grapefruit, Hass Avocado, Mushrooms, Onions, Peas, Rhubarb

Clearance: After Easter sales are the time to stock up on decorating, baskets, etc for the next year.

May:

Memorial Day: BBQ Sauce, Ketchup, condiments, charcoal, salad dressing, potato chips, dips

Paper Products: plates, utensils, insect repellant, sunscreen

Cinco De Mayo: Salsa, tortillas

Seasonal Produce: Artichokes, Asparagus, Avocado, Beans, Green, Beets, Blackberries, Carrots, Onions, Sweet Vidalia, Peas, Edible Pods, Peas, English/Shelling, Potatoes, New, Raspberries, Strawberries

June:

National Dairy Month: Eggs, Milk (Free Milk Catalina, wyb cereal), Ice Cream, Cheese, Butter,Yogurt, cool whip, In-store dairy coupons or booklets.

End of June is Fourth or July Sales: Hot Dogs, Hamburgers, BBQ Sauce, Ketchup, condiments, charcoal, salad dressing, potato chips, dips

Seasonal Produce: Apricots, Blackberries, Blueberries, Boysenberries, Cherries, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Grapes, Honeydew, Nectarines, Peaches, Potatoes, Raspberries, Red Onions, Squash, Summer, Strawberries, Sweet Vidalia Onions, Tomatoes, Watermelon

July:

National Ice Cream Month

More 4th of July BBQ Sales: Hot Dogs, Hamburgers, BBQ Sauce, Ketchup, condiments, charcoal, salad dressing, potato chips, dips

End of July: Back to School Sales begin: crayons, pencils, folders, binders

Seasonal Produce: Asian Pears, Bartlett Pears, Beans, Green, *Blueberries, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Figs, Garlic, Grapes, Nectarines, Onions, Red, Oranges, Valencia, Peaches, Peppers, Sweet/Bell, Plums, Potatoes, Squash, Summer, Tomatoes, Watermelon

August:

Back to School: Pudding cups, Lunch meat,

Staples and Office Depot Penny items

Disinfectant: Clorox, Purell

Clearance: Insect Repellant, Sunscreen, charcoal

Seasonal Produce: Apple, Gravenstein, Avocado, Hass, Beans, Beans, Green, Berries, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Figs, Grapes, Melons, Onion, Peaches, Pears, Bartlett, Pepper, Bell, Plums, Raspberries, Squash, Summer, Tomatillo, Tomato

September:

Back to School Sales through labor day: crayons, pencils, folders, binders

Diabetes: Bayer Glucose Meters, Glucerna Cereal

Seasonal Produce: Apples, Artichokes, Beans, Bell Peppers, Chile Peppers, Cucumber, Eggplant, Grapes, Onion, Orange, Valencia, Pears, Asian, Pears, Bartlett, Pomegranate, Squash, Tomatillo, Tomatoes, Winter Squash

October:

Halloween: Candy

Beginning of the baking sales: Canned pumpkin, evap milk, baking chips

National Seafood Month

Adopt a Shelter-Dog Month: Pedigree, Purina

Seasonal Produce: Almonds, Apples, Artichokes, Arugula, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbages, Chard, Chestnuts, Cranberries, Lemons, Parsnip, Pears, Pomegranate, Potatoes, Potatoes, Sweet, Pumpkin, Spinach, Squash, Winter, Turnips, Yams

November:

Baking Sales in full swing: nuts, chocolate chips, evap milk, sweetened condensed milk, coconut, cake mixes

Canned foods – soup, broth, condensed milk, vegetables, fruits, spaghetti sauce

Turkey, canned pumpkin, stovetop stuffing, betty crocker boxed potatoes, gravy mixes, rhodes rolls, frozen pies, cranberry sauce, jello, marshmallows

Seasonal Produce: Anjou Pears, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbages, Carrots, Celery, Comice pears, cranberries, kiwi, lemons, orange, potato, squash, yams

Clearance: After Halloween sales are the time to stock up on things for the next year. I like to buy the Halloween candy-alternatives like halloween crayons, erasers, watches, spinning tops, etc. I mix this in with my next year’s candy bowl and it stretches my loot for all the neighbor kids!

December:

Holiday Dinner: Egg Nog, Deli Platters, Instant Potatoes, gravy mixes, rhodes rolls, frozen pies, cranberry sauce, jello, marshmallows

Baking: Flour, Sugar, Butter, Cream, Cake mix, Brownie mix, Muffin mix, Breads, Pie Crust, Marshmallow, Whipped cream

Canned foods – soup, broth, condensed milk, vegetables, fruits, spaghetti sauce

Clearance: Buy all your Thanksgiving Decorations, extra table settings and turkey carving products now once they’re at least 50% off.

Ben the Turkey from the field trip last week
 Planning ahead and creating a stock pile will definitely help cut down your grocery bill. Try buying items at rock bottom prices instead of off sale and without a coupon. What do you think you will save? Did you see my facebook post about couponing? If not, you can read the article here.

be blessed!

t



the Best Part of Waking Up

Is Folgers in your cup!! Actually the best part is getting it for free. That's what I did! All you see here. Free. Free. Free.


I wonder if this is how MLKjr felt when he gave his "I have a dream" speech. {I'm kidding of course.}

Here's the scoop:

{3} $3 off coupons for Splenda (last week's paper)
{3} $1 off coupons from Folgers (paper and printer from internet)
{1} $.50 off 2 coupon for skittles (I needed fillers on this one)
{1} $4 off next purchase from Wags Register Rewards from Taster's Choice

Splenda is on sale this week for $2.99. Folgers is on sale for $2.79/J took to work. Skittles were supposed to be $1.00(which I will go and have adjusted) but I paid $1.29. (Had I not got the Skittes and just got a $.25 meat stick, It would have saved more. BUT the boys got coupons for movies for Easter, so I figured it could be Movie Night Snacks)

In advertised savings I saved $12.60. In coupons savings I saved $16.49. {because the coupon was $3 and the item was only $2.99, they had to adjust the price. who cares... it was FREE!} Total OOP I paid was $3.93.

You might be saying to yourself " UHM, T that doesn't make it FREE!! DUH!" Well, when you factor the SURPRISE, UNADVERTISED $4 Splenda register reward in, it does!!

Have you tried using Walgreens for ANY part of your shopping?  Are you confused about how it works?

Still think you don't have the time to clip coupons? My stunning cousin Andrew made a comment to me the other day about how time =s money. Well Andy... Time = Money SAVED.

be blessed,

t

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Happy Easter

I hope you all have a wonderful day with the ones you love tomorrow, remembering why it is we celebrate these days as we do.

Are you coloring eggs?

What is your coloring process?

Here are some of ours.


be blessed

t

Blogging

There just isn't enough hours in the day to get everything done.

I had hoped to get a whole lot more done this week to share with you, but it just didn't happen.

We had swim, rock climbing, homework, researching, a WONDERFUL resurrection of Jesus reinactment that our neighbors were apart of and invited us to, a dinner date, AND just being a mom.

I shopped yesterday at Harris Teeter. I bought Smart Balance milk for $1.00. Actually I bought 3 half gallons for $1.00 each. Anyone who buys it, knows it is not cheap. I was super stoked. But before I get to that, Here is everything I bought the other day when I said I bought Silk milk for $.50.

What would do you think you would normally pay for all of this WITHOUT coupons?

These are the groceries I bought the other day for the Silk being only $.50. The non-coupon price of Silk is about $4.00. Wednesdays Farm Fresh has double coupons. Plus most of the milk was marked off $1.00 for a manager's special, which brought it to $2.00. Then I had a $.75 coupon which doubled to another $1.50 coming off. And THAT is how I only paid $.50 for that milk.

I really want you to take a guess. Later tonight I will update with the price I paid for everything.

 I still can't wrap my mind around how much I continue to save.

And when I don't, I feel defeated. Like this morning going to Walmart for 6 items and spending over $20. FOR SIX ITEMS!!

Alright, I really had to make this quick as we are going to friends for dinner.

be blessed

t

**UPDATE** I paid $44.22 and saved 39.50 including tax.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Budgeting

I'm curious to know what you spend on groceries. Do you plan a menu and stick to it when you are shopping? Or do you go shopping with an idea of what you are going to get, but with nothing set in stone.

Last night I watched Extreme Couponing. I was jealous for a minute when one of the ladies got out of paying $1000+ worth of "stuff", that she couponed, for only $9.42. That included the MEAT she bought (which is where my jealousy came in). BUT I REFUSE to empty a bin of Excederin. 

I missed posting yesterday. {i MUST have been busy}

Today I have a field trip with O's class.

No promises.... I will try to post how I bought milk for $.50 yesterday, among my other purchases.

Are you couponing? Are you thrifty? Let me know what inspired you get with saving your hard earned money.

I leave you with this...



This is one of my favorite SOOC photos of rain droplets. AND the reason I love it so much is because I was having {truly} a tough day. I went to the car to get out of the house so I could be alone, and turned on the KLOVE station that I listen to everyday. I snapped this photo along with many others. Just a reminder that HE died for me. He died for you. It's HIS plan; not ours.

be blessed

t

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Sunday Evening's Trip to Walgreens

You've been waiting so patiently to hear how I did at Walgreens. Well, here it is!

T has allergies since moving here, and he is ALWAYS sniffing up his nose because it's so dry. I found a solution and it happened to be on sale this week at Walgreens.

See it there in the middle? It's called NasoGel, and it REALLY works! It is normally $6.99. The sale price this week was $4.99. AND it had a $1 off peelie attached, so that made it $3.99. This is one product that, when purchased, you received a $5 in store reward. During this transaction, I also bought two chocolate peeps that I had {1}$1.00 mnfctr coupon AND {1}$.50 Walgreens store coupon for. They were on sale this week 2/$1.50. Guess What?? I got the PEEPS for FREE. Guess What Else?? I got the NasoGel for FREE too, because they PAID me $5 to try it out. See how that is working here? Look at my receipt below. (YES, I did have to put up the $4.02 to begin which seems to recon I maybe only "earned" myself $1.00, but don't forget that means I got the product for free AND they threw in a couple Peeps on top of that.)


Here is what the Catalina Coupon that I received looks like. (These are the two I received today. They look exactly like these ones, except it was for just ONE. I went back today and bought more.)



See the expiration date? You have UNTIL then to use your FREE money. There ARE exclusions that you can read right there.

What else did I get? Glad you asked. You see those boxes of Nescafe Taster's Choice Coffee Singles? I printed {2} $1.00 coupons off from Nescafe, and they were on sale. They ALSO had register rewards when you bought two or four. I bought four. Below is my receipt and the register rewards.



I could have used the $5 reward and purchase these, BUT if you don't use the FULL amount on the reward, you lose it. So I paid $2.10, and got a $4 reward. What does that mean for me? That means that Walgreens and Nescafe PAID me $1.90 to try 4 boxes of their instant coffee. AND I also got a $1.50 coupon for the product below which will go along nicely with my coffee.


Can you think of WHERE I can use this instant coffee?? YEP... when we go camping!!

Hopefully everyone uses some sort of mouth/teeth cleaning products. We usually use Crest. However, I had {2}$1.00 off coupons for Colgate and decided at some point we will give it a try. Colgate is on sale 2/$6.00. Also, 3M has a pdf full of coupons you can find here. Walgreens ad had buy {1} 3M tape and get {2} FREE. The ad also had Easter baskets on sale for $.79 with in ad coupon. I needed a filler because I was going to use the reward that I received from the Nasogel. Here's how it went down.
I used {2}$1.00 off coupons for Colgate, {2} $1.00 off coupons for 3M tape {2}$.20off in ad coupon for Easter baskets, AND my $5.00 Register Reward from the purchase of Nasogel. Look at what I paid for all of that? $1.05 Can you believe that? BUT WAIT!!! It gets better... THEY paid me $2.95 to try out all of those products. How? Because I got a $4.00 Register Reward for the Colgate.


Next are the hair ties/clips. They were on sale for $3.00 that included a $3.00 register reward. So guess what? I really got em for free (minus tax).
Which I could have used on the eggs that I purchased, had I known that I would have still gotten the REDBOX rentals. In store ad was buy {2} dozen eggs, get redbox rental for a night.

Now I know. Two free rentals for REDBOX = $2.00 Eggs were $2.64 which means I paid $.64 for two dozen eggs. 

Last, but not least, I took a trip across the street to Walmart to pick up some travel first aid kits, which didn't work out... BUT I did find Secret Flawless deodorant with a sample clinical strength on clearance for $2.25. It is normally $7.76 for just the one. With getting the sample size, which is like a travel size, it's almost like getting the deodorant for FREE. Almost.

Anyway, There ya go. At Walgreens I spent out of pocket (OOP) a total of $12.96. In rewards I received $19.50 (including the redbox and creamer coupon). Not bad for an evenings work on things we will USE.

You won't find me buying things we won't use, like some other couponers I have seen. That is NOT why I am purchasing with coupons. I am not going to buy something "just because i can" if I have a coupon for it. I will gladly send the coupon along with the others I won't use to the overseas military bases. I encourage you to do the same. ALSO, if you don't want your coupons, I will gladly take them and send them for you with mine.

Let me know what you think. Tomorrow we will get into the nitty gritty of how planning a trip works. ARE you ready to go through your grocery store ads and make your grocery list for your shopping trip?

be blessed!

t

Rue La La FREE $20 credit



The Rue La La $20 credit is back!!

Ever heard of them? They have some AWESOME deals daily. Most the time you can save up to half OR more! They have just about anything you could want, rotating every couple days!

If you have not yet signed up at Rue La La, you can now score a Free $20 credit. You have to sign up by 4/25 and you must use the credit by 5/25/11.

Don't miss out on your Ru La La free $20 credit!! Who doesn't like FREE money??

I am pretty sure that I am going to score that coffee make that they have listed for the next couple days.

The credit will appear in your account in approximately 48 hours, but then it's yours to use... FOR FREE!!

Gotta love that!

be blessed

t



Store Coupon Policies

 I feel it is REALLY important to know the coupon policies of the stores you are shopping at. I have compiled a list below, and suggest that you print them out so you are aware how coupons work at your stores.

Some stores accept other stores' coupons. Some only accept manufacturer coupons. Some DOUBLE or even TRIPLE a coupon up to a certain $.00 amount.

So check them out. Print them, or if you have a smart phone, pull up the policy, take a snapshot of it so you have it with you at all times. I've print them out and put them in my small binders. (We will get to that part later in the week)

Albertson's
Dollar General
Econofoods
Family Thrift Center
**Farm Fresh (scroll down about half way) courtesy of afullcup.
Food Lion
Giant Food stores
Harris Teeter
**Kmart courtesy of thekrazycouponlady
**Krogers courtesy of thekrazycouponlady
Prairie Foods
Safeway
Sunmart Foods
Target
Walgreens
Walmart

I am currently working on getting a Commissary policy for those of you who are able to utilize that. I will update as I find it. ALSO, I contacted NashFinch yesterday, and waiting to hear a reply for Family Thrift.

**UPDATE** I spoke with "C" from NashFinch today, and I have included the following stores that follow the SAME coupon policy: Econofoods, Family Thrift Center, Prairie Market Foods, and Sunmart Foods.

**Please keep in mind that the stores with the ** next to their name are links to the only place I found the coupon policy. Policies MAY change at any time, and in that case, if you would kindly email me for an update, I will gladly change it. **

I did NOT cover CVS or RiteAid at this time because I am not using them, right now. {It was hard enough to get down how the Walgreen's rewards work; I am still in the baby step process myself.}

Are you feeling overwhelmed? I hope not. Hang in there. Today we will be going over what occured Sunday at Walgreen's so that I MADE money shopping there.


Don't you want that to be YOU???

 Even if you don't want to leave a comment, go ahead and follow me, so you don't miss a beat in this couponing expedition we are on.

be blessed

t


Monday, April 18, 2011

Meal Planning


Have you already cut coupons from yesterday's paper? Do you have a meal plan? If not, put the scissors down and walk away.

It's super important that you have a meal plan for the time period you will be shopping for. I used to plan just for a couple days, or at most a week. Today, that's different. I plan for at least two weeks, keeping in mind that store sales are usually once every quarter. (MEANING, if there are things today that I KNOW I will need in the next few months, I'm going to stock up. This is called stock piling. AND no.... I'm not talking about purchasing 120 tubes of tooth paste, because like I've said before, that's ridiculous.)

What I am talking about, though, is picking up canned fruits or vegetables when they are on sale. The past few weeks there have been sales on Bird's Eye veggie steamers. Some stores have had them 10 for $10. Using the coupons that you are able to print off, you can get them as low as $.50 a piece. Not bad, right? Keep in mind that most stores that offer B1G1 free or Buy 10 for $10 you are NOT obligated to purchase 10 or get two. The B1G1 will be rung up as half price. It varies from store to store. I'm also talking about cereal, lunch meat, bread, milk, yogurt, cheese. ANYTHING that you can possibly think of that you will need as it is on sale AND you have a coupon for it. (Do you know that you can freeze milk, yogurt, and cheese? That is something I JUST found out.)

Right now there is a Catalina coupon for Hamburger Helper. You save $.75 on three. A lot of stores have sales on these right now. I can't remember what my actual cost was for them at Target last week, but with coupons, I know I saved quite a bit.

The important thing is to plan your meals, then shop your flyers. I plan to help out as much as I can with getting you access to deals in the paper (that is why I asked who my audience was from before). Breakfast. Lunch. Dinner.

So do you have your meals planned yet? Get busy. We will work out the brands that you will you by Wednesday.

be blessed

t

Here is a little teaser of what I did purchase at Walgreens yesterday. I actually MADE money by purchasing these Nestle Cafe single coffees. Tomorrow I will tell you how.





As always, please leave a comment of some sort so I know who my audience is. If you would like to see certain deals for certain stores, I won't know unless you tell me. ALSO, don't forget about the drawing if I reach 100 followers. No one is paying me for this. I just want to know my writing/couponing experience is also helping someone else.

The BASICS

You saw the SAVINGS, right?? How totally siked about saving are you? Before you jump in and think that you are going to save 50% right away, you really need to know some BASICS. I've done the leg work for you, so hopefully it will make it a little easier.

{1} Maufacturers publish coupons a couple of different ways. They usually come in the Sunday paper. I know you've heard of them. RedPlum, Smart Source, and Proctor and Gamble (about once a month).

{2}Some coupons come in a form printed at the register, called Catalina Coupons. These are coupons that you can use on future purchases and usually have an expiration date. Midwest, you might get them from Safeway, Target, Albertson's, CVS, Walgreens, and Family Thrift. East coast, you might get them from Food Lion, Giant, Safeway, Harris Teeter, Krogers, Walgreens, Target, CVS, and Farm Fresh. (IF you have other stores that you would like me to add, please let me know.)

{3} I spoke about Catalina coupons above, but ONE thing you should also know is that MOST of the drugstore chains AND some grocery stores have their own little Register Rewards {RR}, in which you can earn MONEY towards your next purchase. (Like I did with the Hershey's, AND like what I will be showing you tomorrow). They are Catalinas, too... just for THAT store. {Recently I received a $5 and $7 off from Target; $5 gift card from Krogers, AND $18 from Walgreens. Nice, right?}

{4} Many stores send out their "own" coupons in their sale flyers. Most grocery store ads come out Wednesday and run through the following Tuesday. Krogers comes out in the Sunday paper. {I've been gone from home too long to know if any grocery stores have ads that come out on Sunday.} Walgreens, Target, RiteAid, CVS are all types of drugstores that have coupons in their Sunday/Wednesday ads (usually).

{5} Store card savings. You know what those are, right? The little key tag or card that you carry around with you so you get the BEST deals. A little know fact, though, is that at some stores you can LOAD additional savings to your card either through a kiosk at the store, OR at your stores online site.

{6} You can PRINT coupons from the web. YES, you read correctly. Print them from the internet. You can find an abundant here at Print.Coupons.com where you just enter your zipcode, and you will find the coupons that are offered for your area. YOU can change the zipcode, to see if you can find a product coupon available in another area. You can also find them at REDPLUM, as well as Smart Source. You can EVEN order already clipped or whole inserts from clipping services. (You are paying them for their time, not for the coupon because that would be illegal. We will get into that in the upcoming weeks)

{7} Do you have a specific BRAND that you like, and can't live without? Check out their website. MANY companies offer coupons, especially when you send them a kind note letting them know your brand loyal to them, and you can ask for coupons if available. Keep in mind, not all companies will send freebees. Have you seen updates occassionally from me, "liking" something on facebook? It's usually because there are coupons involved. I don't mind. Afterward, I usually go in and delete the post update, but I still got my coupon.

{8} IF you don't have brand loyalty to a product, don't be afraid to TRY new things. Often it can save you MONEY. And that's why we are doing this, right?? To save us money. There are coupons out there that if you buy a certain brand of spaghetti sauce you then get the STORE brand of spaghetti for free. (This one is VERY popular, so be on the look out for it!)

{9} SMARTPHONES: I almost for got to mention to USE your smartphone to find apps that offer coupons. We have iphones. Target now has a coupon app that sends out coupons that the cashier just scans your phone, and WAHLAH... instant savings! Cellfire is another app. I am JUST starting so I don't know all apps that are available, but I wanted to give you that resource tip so you can find the ones that will work best for you and your family!

{10} Lastly, by COMBINING the store coupon with the manufacturer coupon you will save more money. It's not rocket science. Unfortunately, it takes alot of time to gather all the information that you will need. The good thing is that there is an ABUNDANT of resources out there that I will be sharing with you, so you can get the BEST deals.

So what do you say? Are you TRULY wanting to save? Because first and foremost, You have to WANT to save!!

Tomorrow we will be discussing just how I MADE money at Walgreens with Sunday's purchases, and a little bit of the lingo that goes along with couponing.

I will make it clear, I am not a professional couponer, despite what Linda Palmer may think! ;o) {love ya!} BUT I do want to share my knowledge that I am accumulating with you all. I am not a coupon hoarder. I am not going to go on TLC's extreme couponing show and clear the shelves. I think it's wrong. AND I also think that buying 2000 tooth brushes is wrong. You do NOT need a stockpile that large. IF you are willing to donate to the military both overseas and at home, go for it. BUT, just because YOU can, doesn't mean you should.

I'm sure that I have missed an item or two, but if I think of anything else, I will be sure to update.

**UPDATE**

**I forgot to mention KMART!  I was reminded of their store coupons because I hadn't finished going through the paper yet. SO, if your Kmart is awesome, don't forget to utilize them, as well. **

**Tomorrow we will also be going over Store policies**

IT IS ALSO WRONG TO USE A COUPON FOR ANYTHING OTHER THAN WHAT IT IS INTENDED FOR. IT IS FRAUD. YOU CAN GO TO JAIL {Jaime}.

As always, please leave a comment on this post so I know who my audience is. Better yet, FOLLOW me. IF I reach {100} followers by the end of April, I will be holding a giveaway! For FREE!! Don't be hogging all the money saving tips for yourself~ refer your friends to my blog! ;o)

be blessed!

t

First trip to Walgreens

This is my first post about {really} couponing. Hope it spikes your interest!

Saturday evening J and I went to Walgreen's because their sales for the week were almost up, and there were a couple of things I wanted to get before I truly missed out. Although THAT particular trip cost us $42.+ out of pocket {oop}, It also netted us {2} $5 Hershey rewards. I did not do exactly like I had planned, BUT I did score some free money. {Which is definitely helpful with Easter coming up.} AND I also got some supplements that I started taking yesterday.

After we went home, I was feeling kind of bummed that it didn't go how I had planned, and that we blew the budget that I {THOUGHT} we would have. I decided to put my game face on and go back out, this time with my plan in hand and NO wavering.

These are the items I bought:

{4} boxes of Peeps chicks {2} bags of Easter peanut M&Ms {4} bags of Hershey kisses, including caramel, plain, and almond (they were clearanced from $4.89 to$2.19, remember I had the $10 Hershey rewards from the previous shopping trip that night) {1} bag of Hershey dark chocolate Nuggats with almonds, {1} bag of Hershey Easter Kisses with Almonds, {2} Hefty ziplock baggies (quart and gallon), {1} Wonka chocolate egg (which was REG $5.89/on sale for $3.79 WITH my $3.00 in coupons I got it for $.79!), {2} Blue Diamond Almonds {sale B1G1), {2}Starburst eggs, {2} packs of Wrigleys FIVE gum, {3} Dove truffle eggs, {3} Dove chocolate bunnies.

We saved $4.29 with {WAGS=Walgreens} in-ad coupons, $14.88 in AD prices, and $23.60 with manufacturer coupons {including the ones from Hersheys}. ALSO, we really did save MORE than that when you look at the FULL picture of the clearance bags of the Hershey's Kisses candy, the Wonka Egg wasn't supposed to ring up on sale yet.

That means we saved a GRAND total of $42.77 OR $58.42 if you include the markdown price of the candy.

For $73.34, I only paid $14.92.

Check it out below




Are YOU ready to get busy saving? LEAVE a comment BELOW just so I know the audience I am writing to with this couponing. No need to leave something fancy. Even a ;o) will do. I have disabled the word verification. You can even leave an anonymous note.

be blessed

T

Friday, April 15, 2011

The boys

I got on a kick editing old photos, so I could enter one into PW's {brothers} photo contest. No zoo edits today. So much to do, so little time.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this photo. Thinking this will go up in our home at some point.

Love. Them. To. Pieces.

Have a great weekend everyone!

be blessed!

t

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Long time, no post. ;o)

WOW!! I can't believe it's been SO long since I have posted.

I DO have some photos to post, BUT I haven't done any editing for almost two weeks. {I needed to back away for awhile}.

Anyway, the happenings that have been going on around here are as follows:

1. {Spring break} It came and went. We went to check out the zoo in Norfolk. It's easily accessible and wasn't too crowded. I do have photos, but it will have to wait for tomorrow. I promise.

2. {Swim} O started swim again. It's a conditioning program this time. He had made such a HUGE improvement in just one practice. I'm super proud of him! {Even if he doesn't like going all the time. I think it's good for him.}

3. {Rock Climb} There is a climb wall at the Y, where I am proud to say I frequent nearly EVERY day now. O signed up for free climbing on Tuesday and Thursdays. He loves it. {more than swim} I feel good he is getting to experience some things that weren't financially available when I was younger.

4. {Basketball} I have mentioned before that our neighbor has let T pretty much take over his driveway at night. They have a basketball hoop cemented into their driveway. Most afternoons and evenings, You can find T out there shooting around. {It really does bring a smile to my face to see that he has passion, again, for the one thing he loves almost as much as Christy.}

5. {Reading} J jr read to J a couple nights ago on skype. He's READING... like full paragraphs and chapter books. We are SO proud of him! M is doing such a great job. Super lucky to be where we are today with her and S. We miss him terribly. {love you buddy!!}


"Go away, already!" Seriously. It's what I get everytime I have my camera out.
 6. {Feeling} I really am starting to regain a sense of being a mom. Being there. For so many years I worked, and worked, from sun up to sun down, and wasn't {there}. Although I continue to look for work, it's a good feeling that I have, knowing I am present in our kids lives. Actively being a parent. {not just going through the motions like I had for so long}. (Pray I find work soon!)

And last but not least...

7. {YMCA} I credit my friend TC for jump starting my motivation, inviting me to go to the Y with her. Although J had gone in the previous week, and I once on a Saturday, I was really not {feeling} it. But now I am. I have been consistant with going 5 days a week. (We are on week three) I found a cardio body trainer that I pretty much am in love with, and started weight training last week. ALREADY I can tell a difference in my legs and abs. Let's just say that the motivation hasn't fizzled out yet. YAY!! {And I'm so proud of J, for continuing on with the Master's swim program. Really proud! AND he continues to keep me going, too. For that... I thank you, babe!}


So I leave you with a photo of us on a trip to California. This is the me of yesterday. While many things have changed inside, I long  for the {outside}me of yesterday, today. Make sense?


Be blessed.

T

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Pardon My Mess

There's never really been a big change on my blog.

I've moved things around.

It's kind of like Spring Cleaning.

I felt it was time.

If I've missed your link, and you want to be added, please drop me a note. {It's hard to keep up!}

So, please pardon my mess.

{and another blog without a photo}


be blessed

t




Friday, April 1, 2011

April Fool's Day



There is no April Fool's when it comes to how crazy these two kids are for each other.

It's HER birthday weekend.

And she's coming down to see him. {along with her mother, whom I adore.}


Have a great weekend.

be blessed

t





Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Yes... Here he is!!

Just look at him.

I can hardly believe he is fifteen!



He's well over 3 inches taller than me. {which means he is nearly 6 ft!}



I love his smile. He has perfect teeth; no orthodontia assistance. {and my pocket book thanks him!}

And on this day, he humored me with some of his charm.



Crazy kid.

I love him so much.

Too much.

be blessed

t

   the long road

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Sweet Shot Tuesday {Peeking}


Playing "Hide the Easter Eggs" yesterday with her mother,  {our neighbor across the street}, Sweet Thang decided she would take a peek at where they were being hid. A mind of her own, has she... but so so adorable!

As always, thanks for looking, and leaving some love!!

If you want to link up today with Sweet Shot Tuesday, or see some other beautiful captures, click below.

Sweet Shot Day        








Be Blessed!

t

{also, i know her head is cut off, but it was luck i even caught the moment!}


Monday, March 28, 2011

Birds on Roof

For the past 9 weeks, J and I have had the opportunity to eat breakfast together due to him having a class at Lockheed Martin. We usually sit at the table, and watch the birds and squirrels outside doing there morning thing, while we do ours.

This morning, I saw across the fence that {two} Canada geese had flown on top of the neighbors' houses. I thought it was the funniest thing.

{Can ya see it up there??}

(Yep, it's for real!!)

And there is his girl, across the way, one house up from him.
{because she wouldn't be chasing after him, would she??}

Anyway, I just wanted to share a little of the happenings of our morning with you. Have you seen anything like this before? I'd love to hear about it, so leave a comment if you will. ;o)

Be blessed.

t

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Scavenger Hunt Sunday

Photo linkies.... They are new to me. But I am finding myself enjoying what other people are posting. Gives you a little get-up-and-go in your mojo. This is the second one I've done. I don't see me stopping anytime soon.

1.{decay: (do you see what I see?) old/abandoned}
{Two ol' buzzards sittin in the window frame}

2. {Groups of three}
{Is the not the number I could contain
myself to eating of these bad boys.}

3. {Kitchen}

{Yes he is barefoot; No he isn't pregnant}

4.{Things that make you go hmmm....}

{This was an amazing find when I was out shark-tooth hunting}

5. {Me time}

{Breakfast in Bed}
(sleepy eyes/out of focus...oops!)

So there you have it. My first Sunday Scavenger Hunt.
 Not all these photos were taken this week,
But all of the photos were taken by me, and that counts in my book.

You want to give it a try? Check it out below!