Sunday, January 30, 2011

Monday Menus

Monday: Pizza
Tuesday: Toasted Cheese Sandwiches
Wednesday: Lasagna
Thursday: Something with the hamburger meat left over after making lasagna lol
Friday: Peanut Butter Chicken
Saturday: Pancakes
Sunday: Possibly going to the church Super Bowl party and potluck...

Friday, January 28, 2011

Vegas... here we come, and other things

I haven't checked in for a few days. Let'e see, what has happened:

  1. I got a job! I don't know when I am starting and it will be Monday, Tuesday, and Fridays. I will be scanning patient files. I love busy work so this is perfect for me!:)
  2. I made a headband yesterday and then I took it apart... stupid pattern! LOL 
  3. After the spring show, the boys will no longer be doing CYT. Huge issues there, we have decided that at least in Kansas City, it has really lost the Christian aspect of the organization. DS16 did get the lead in his school play, so he is happy about that! Quitting CYT, aside from missing a lot of friends, will save us about $3000 a year! WOW1
  4. DS17 got accepted to the college he wanted, so we will be working on scholarships starting this week!
  5. I am starting school for my MFA in photography on Monday, DH is starting for his BFA in photography at the same time!
  6. Weight loss: eh... I am going to buy some Alli tonight and try that! I just need something to keep me honest, and with the negative side effects of that stuff if you eat poorly... yeah, I think it will keep me on track!

The weight loss leads me to this: Ok, so I am a photographer. I am trying to make it a full time business... I filled out a form for a free pass to WPPI, Wedding and Portrait Photographers International convention in Las Vegas, and guess what?? I won!! DH and I will be going to Las Vegas from Feb 20th to the 25th! We will be staying at the MGM Grand! We will be flying! I'm so excited! We have some money coming in from our income tax return to help pay for airfare/hotel. And I think I will be checking a bag so that I can throw food in there for us to eat! LOL I need to come up with some snacks that would be good for the trip. Anyway, back on the weight loss... I lost a lot of weight last year doing hCG, only to gain it all back and more when I quit hCG. So, most of my clothes are too small... because when I lost the weight I got rid of my fat clothes and bought(mostly from thrift shops) smaller clothes. Well, nothing fits! I have NO jeans that fit, and have a couple of pairs of athletic pants that fit and one pair of dressier pants... this weekend we will be going to a couple of thrift stores to get a few things, but I think if I lose some weight before the trip, less than a month away, I might be able to squeeze into a few things.

Oh, and I thought I might make this fun for me... like have a goal/reward system to really make myself do this... I was thinking for every pound I lose, I can spend $2.00 towards yarn/patterns. I have about 70-80 lbs to lose, so total that would be $140-$160 worth of yarn/patterns, and I would use those to sell on Etsy, so I would make money in the long run too... lol I am a yarn addict!;)

Wish me luck!:)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Crocheted Hood/Cowl

Made this cowl/hood for myself yesterday! So pretty!!

Used Charisma yarn that was on sale for $2.00 a skein at Michaels and so it only cost $4.00!! Woot!:)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Stuff I Want from Etsy!

Lol, I thought it would be fun to have a weekly post on Stuff I Want from Etsy! Not that I will ever get any of it, but I can just stick it here and look at the pretty pictures, right?! Like I always tell the boys, "It's good to want things, it builds character!"

So, here goes! Isn't this the cutest own bank ever!!?? I wuv it!!:)

I would totally hang this print in my home!:)

Oh my gosh, I am in LOVE!!! :)

Aww, how sweet!:)

And when I finally get my iPad, I want to get one of the following for a case:

Ok, that's it for today! LOL I will stop drooling over the owls and will go crochet something!:)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Monday Menus

Monday: Bacon Stuffed French Toast
Tuesday: Baked Potato Bar
Wednesday: Biscuits and Gravy
Thursday: Hawaiian Grilled Cheese
Friday: Pizza
Saturday: Chili
Sunday: Leftovers

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Shopping, continued

No pictures this time... too tired lol


Spent $87.67, saved $41.18 (32%)

Duncan Hines brownie mixes($1.00), Duncan Hines yellow cake($1.00), Kraft Shredded cheeses($1.99 -$1/2 coupon = $1.50 each), Kroger Creamer big($2.45), Hazelnut syrups(these were orginally $2.35 each, on clearance for $1.19), Kroger Whipped topping($1.15 :/) Fortune cookies($1.59), Colgate toothpaste($1.00 - $1/1 = FREE!), Kroger cinnamon rolls($1.00), 6 pack ramen noodles(88¢), Grands Biscuits($1.00 - 60¢/2(coupon is 30¢/2, but Dillons doubles every day) - 30¢/2CF = 55¢ each), Kroger spaghetti sauce($1.00 jar), Kroger tomatoes(95¢ - for chili), Kroger apple juice($1.50, DS10 loves apple juice!), bread(99¢), Texas toast($1.49), Kroger deluxe shells and cheese($1.50), Green Giant Steamers($1.99 - $1.00/1 = 99¢... yes, I could have bought more and got the deeper discount, but didn't have enough coupons to buy the 10 products for the discount... I am starting over on couponing, so just now starting to stockpile coupons. I bought 4 papers today though!), Velveeta($4.99 - I hate paying this much for Velveeta, but I need it for Spaghetti Pie!), Farmland Bologna($1.25 - $1.00/1 = 25¢), Softsoap(88¢ - 70¢/1 = 18¢), Peanut thai noodles($1.00), Thai peanut sauce mix($2.95), Coconut milk($1.89), Kashi Cereal($2.99 - $1.00/1 = $1.99 I don't usually spend over $1.50 for a box of cereal, but I love Kashi and it is a treat for ME!), Hunts ketchup($1.00), Kroger diced tomatoes(60¢ for chili), Kroger peanut butter($1.25 each), Kroger brand Nutella($2.79), Angel Soft($1.00 each), 3 lbs oranges(on clearance for 99¢!)


Total: $34.99

Yes, we already went to Walmart once... however, Walmart is usually our last stop, because if nobody else has it cheaper, we get it at Walmart!

Pepperonis($2.00), Jimmy Dean Sausage Crumbles(for pizza - $2.98), Pizza Crust Kits($3.77 each) sour cream($1.38), another thing of Ricotta cheese($1.83), hamburger buns($1.38), vegetable oil($2.84), Bacon pieces($1.64), jiffy yellow cake mix(the other store only had 1, so we had to do some looking, this is the cake mix we use for our Chapple Dump Cake, 66¢), gallon milk($3.03), bakery breads, all reduced(90¢, 90¢, and $1.80).

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Went Shopping

Ok, so I lasted 22 days of the challenge... lol I just wanted to go get some new food and some deals! So, here goes!


Tide Ultra $0.97- after $1.00 coupon: -0.3
Dannon Activia $1.89 - after $1.00 coupon: $0.89
Reveal Lightbulbs $2.44- after $1.00 mfr coupon and $1.50 Target coupon: -0.6
Goodlife Recipe catfood $0.77 - after $1.50 coupon:  -0.73
Maalox Mint $4.54 - after $5.00 coupon: -0.46
Choxie Chocolate bars x 2 $4.38 - after buy 1 get 1 free: $2.19

Total: $1.88 {WOOT!} Plus I got a register coupon for $1.00 off 2 activia 4-packs at Target
I was giddy after this shop! LOL Yeah, I'm a geek!;)


Spent a total of $64.63 for the following:
Garlic Naan($2.00), Artisan Bread($3.00), 2 boxes Ronzoni lasagna ($1.08 - $1/2 c = 58¢ each), Ronzoni Egg Noodles ($1.08 - $1/2 = 58¢ each), Jiffy Yellow Cake Mix(68¢), Index Card book thing to use as a price book($1.24), Ricotta Cheese($1.83), Almond extract($2.98), Maple extract($3.48), Butter($2.56), Whipping Cream($1.78), Coffeemate creamer($1.82 - 75¢c = $1.07), dozen medium eggs($1.54), Garnier Fructis shampoo($2.96 - $1/1c = $1.96), GF conditioner($2.96), gallon fat free milk($3.17), huge can of chili beans($4.12), Equate vanilla "ensure" 6 pack($5.97), Angel Soft toilet paper[needed desperately! lol]($1.18), Toaster[yeah, we didn't have a toaster, and I have been wanting toast really bad! lol]($6.24), all You magazine[bought for coupons! And yes, I have signed up for my free issues and plan to keep the subscription!]($2.49), black jacket for Stephen[he can only wear an all black jacket to work and he has been getting cold! lol]($10 on clearance from $15!).

Price Chopper:

Spent a total of $50.91 for the following:
Apple pie filling($1.00), Cherry pie filling($1.00), Snack packs pudding(69¢ each - 60¢ off 3 = 49¢ each), GM total Cereals($1.49 - $1.00/2 = $1.00 each), Post cereals($2.00 - $1/2 = $1.50 each), Lean Gourmet meals(79¢ - $1.5 = 59¢), Ensure 4 pack[DS16 is vegetarian, so I like to make sure he is getting all his nutrients! lol]($6.99 - $3/1 4 pk = $3.99), Cherries($2.49/lb!), Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts($2.49 lb. I only bought 2 packs because I know I can get them cheaper later and then I will stock up!), cream cheese(79¢ each, bought 4), ground chuck($1.98 lb).


Spent a total of $40.11 for the following:

Folgers coffee($2.99 each - $1/2 = $2.49 each), Hyvee Pasta(77¢ each), Hyvee cereals(3/$5), Hyvee granola bars(3/$5), Hyvee salsa(2/$3), baby carrots($1.00), blue ribbon Butterfly Pork Chops(3/$5), and raspberries(sigh... $4.99... the sign above the blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries said $1.98... didn't realize until we were gone that we paid $4.99 for the raspberries! Live and learn! They better be tasty! I have good plans for them though!:) )

We will go get newspapers for coupons tomorrow and go to Dillons, and ALDI if ALDI is open on Sundays(?). I will amend this post with those totals as well!:)

Thursday, January 20, 2011


If you can tell by the links in my sidebar, I am so ready to start bargain shopping and couponing again! LOL We will be buying 4 Sunday papers a week to get started, and hopefully I can find some creative ways to get FREE coupons. I had DH pick up envelopes for me today, and I just need to find a suitable box to put them in. I am hoping I have something around the house, but I am not holding my breath!

I plan to clip all coupons, put them in envelopes by categories, and then have an envelope for each store that holds store coupons, the weekly shopping list for that store, the store card, if any, and any manufacturer coupons.

I will post pictures as soon as I get it finished!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Crochet {wristers}

Made some wristers. The multi-colored ones I made the pattern for but have misplaced it, when I find it, I will post it; the blue ones I found a pattern online!

DH's Birthday Cake

I am still eating from the pantry, so I had to get creative to make DH's Birthday Cake!

Here is the recipe:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

(I doubled the recipe because I have a VERY BIG pan!lol)

1 white cake mix
2T cocoa powder
3/4 cup coffee
3/4 cup haf & half
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs

Mix it all, put in pan and bake 35 minutes @ 350.


2/3 cup cocoa powder
8T hot coffee
8T butter, softened
4 c powdered sugar
1/4 t cinnamon

Stir together cocoa and coffee. Beat in butter. Beat in powdered sugar and cinnamon. Beat for 1 minute on low, then 2 minutes on medium. This is sooooo yummy!!:)

Let cake cool, then frost!

Everyone LOVED it!:)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Monday Menus

Sorry, it's a day late! I am struggling with meals this week as we are depleting our pantry with the pantry challenge! LOL

Monday: Peanut Butter & Jelly sandwiches (how sophisticated!!)
Tuesday: Venison steak, mashed sweet potatoes, Mac & cheese, peas, and birthday cake(it is DH's birthday!)
Wednesday: Spaghetti
Thursday: French Toast
Friday: we are going to eat out I think, because it is payday and we haven't eaten out in a while!
Saturday: Mini tacos
Sunday: fend

Last week we had pancakes, and I am always looking for new things to put in the pancake batter. So, I had a box of Jello SF vanilla instant pudding, so I threw that in there and made vanilla pancakes! They were yummy!:)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Monday Menus & Pantry Challenge

I am finding it harder this week than last week to eat from the pantry! lol I am out of salsa and cream cheese... not good! Has it really only been 10 days?? Last week we bought milk, cherries(way good sale!!) and ice. That's it! Tonight, we have to go buy more milk.

Oh, and it snowed!!

That is my husband and oldest son's cars covered in snow! And DS17 doesn't have a back window right now, so I feel bad for him having to deal with the snow! It was a Snow Day today, so the boys were home from school! I actually love snow days! LOL

Let's see, what else... Oh, I made some crocheted wristers... I will post a pic later, with my pattern, for anyone who wants to try them!:) I am working on the first "bought & paid for" hat for a friend!:) I was able to buy the yarn and then put the rest in the gas tank. My unemployment is messed up again, so anything I get right now is going into the gas tank.


Monday: Spaghetti, Double Chocolate Snack Cake
Tuesday: Buttered Noodles, fruit
Wednesday: General Tso's Chicken, Rice Noodles, Brownies
Thursday: Venison steak, mashed potatoes, corn, mac & cheese
Friday: Pancakes & Sausage
Saturday: Chicken Fried Chicken & Gravy, mashed potatoes, peas
Sunday: Mini Tacos and whatever leftovers we have on hand!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Crochet {Jester Hat}

So, I made this Jester Hat and it was supposed to have PomPoms, but I didn't have enough yarn to do the PomPoms. So, I improvised! It is really big, so the next one I make will be smaller!:)

So, that is 3 down, 7 more to go for my Etsy shop! I also sold my first hat today!! A friend wants me to make a flap hat for her and I get to choose the colors!:)

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Crochet {Hat for me!}

I made myself this hat from this pattern: Nubby Newsboy Cap from Speckled Frog Crochet.

I didn't have quite enough of the green to finish the hat, so I used black to finish. I had a major headache today, so I look horrible in this picture! I was depressed about money and my unemployment did not come this week, because of some mix up on their part, so I was crying, which lead to the headache, so I laid down for a good part of the day, and when I got up, I decided to make this hat! lol

Crochet {Hat}

I made this hat for DS10 today. He loves it!!:)

I used this pattern: Flap Hat.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Shopping Trip 1/3/11

So, I did pretty well tonight, considering! lol Since I am eating out of the pantry this month, I couldn't buy much, but I did decide to go ahead and buy the french bread from Wal-Mart for the garlic bread I want to make this week! It was only $1.50, so I justified it!

Anyway, here are my purchases:

All from Wal-Mart.

Skim milk gallon - $3.18
French Bread, huge loaf - $1.50
1.67 lbs Golden delicious Apples - $2.29
6 rolls of WM brand toilet paper - $0.97
Total: $8.02 w/tax

Food Price "Book"

I've been wanting to do this for a while, but never have the motivation. Am I getting the best prices for the food I buy? Hmmm... well, let's see... I did an experiment last week. I bought 2 boxes of Velveeta Shells & Cheese from Walmart at for $2.00 a box. I also bought 2 boxes from Dillons(Kroger brand) for $1.25 each (regular price $1.50) and then 2 boxes of the Aldi brand from ALDI of course for $1.29 each. I then made each brand for the family. All were equally good. Nobody said anything bad about any brand. So... looks like if Dillons is having a sale, I go with that brand, if not, I go with the ALDI brand!

Shells & Cheese ? $2.00 $1.25 $1.29
Skim Milk ? $3.18 ? $2.74

I will add to this as I have time!:)

Crochet and Crafty Stuff

My DH bought me crochet patterns, hooks, and yarn for Christmas! :) I'm excited to get started... tomorrow! I have been waiting for the boys to go back to school to start, because they keep me pretty busy! lol Here are the patterns he bought me(I picked them out lol):

Nubby Newsboy Cap

Newborn Hooded Cocoon

Jester Hat with PomPoms

Mystic Owl Hat

Owl Hat - Yes, I love owls! lol

Sweet & Sassy Hat

Flap Hat

I have the yarn to make the Nubby Newsboy Cap for myself, the Flap Hat for DS10 and then one Jester Hat with PomPoms(he also got me a PomPom maker!). My short term goal is to make 10 hats or various crafty things to put into an Etsy shop to start selling! As I sell things, I will buy more patterns to make a bigger variety of things. I did make sure all of the patterns I bought stated that they can be sold online and at Etsy, because there are a lot of sellers out there that do not allow this.

Anyway, I will post pics as I finish projects!:)

Clean out the pantry challenge goals

So, my goals and rules for the Clean out the Pantry Challenge are as follows:

We want to lose weight, so our goal is to get through all the processed and fattening stuff in our pantry, freezer, and fridge this month, so that we can replace it with healthier options.

So, my rules for myself for this challenge are to only buy dairy and produce, UNLESS there are just some amazing deals on healthy foods that I cannot pass up! I would like the option on stocking up when the prices are low, so I don't want to deprive myself of shopping in this case!:)

I have my pantry/freezer/fridge list on this post.

Monday Menus

Monday: New Year's Eve Leftovers - after tonight they will be gone!:)
Tuesday: Chicken Fried Rice (Mac & Cheese for DS16 and DS10 who hate rice, and DS16 is vegetarian anyway)
Wednesday: Venison steaks, Suddenly Salad, Mashed Potatoes, Peas, Rolls
Thursday: Spaghetti, Garlic Bread (I'm deciding on this one, I really WANT garlic bread, but we don't have any so I either have to make the bread from scratch or forgo it since I am eating from the pantry this month)
Friday: Pancakes
Saturday: Sweet & Sour Chicken and rice or noodles
Sunday: fend for yourself day

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Downsizing ME!

So, DH and I decided that we would lose weight this year. I have tried EVERY diet known to man! lol OK, maybe not every one, but a lot... low-fat, low-carb, hCG, Weight Watchers, 6 Minutes in the Morning, IsaGenix, etc etc etc. I have lost weight only to gain it back. The last diet was the hCG diet, and I DID lose quite a bit of weight, only to gain it all back and more. It came off QUICK and came back just as quick! I also started losing my hair... so decided the hCG diet was not for me after all. I would rather be fat with good hair than thin with no hair! LOL Sooo, we have decided to be SMART about weight loss this time.

We are going to take things slow, so that we actually stick to it. We are not using a "diet" but we are going to change the way we do things. We are not going to DEPRIVE ourselves of anything. We are going to make better choices!

So, this is a break down of what we plan to do week by week. We might change some things as we go along.

  1. We will buy no more sweets! We can finish what we have in the house, but we will no longer bring that CRAP into our home. Some may say, "But you have KIDS! Are you going to deprive them of sweets!??" No, we are not depriving them or us of anything... we are making better choices. I'm not saying I will never make dessert, because I love to bake, but we are eliminating all store bought sweets! Also, by doing this, we will have healthier snacks available for us and the boys. They will learn from  this as well!
  2. We will drink WATER! We don't drink enough water. We drink plenty of sweet tea, iced coffees, soda, etc. But we do not drink enough plain water. Once again, we will not be depriving ourselves: we will allow for 1 vice, and mine just happens to be coffee! I will allow myself ONE iced coffee per day. My iced coffee consists of creamer, skim milk, coffee and ice. I can have this in the morning or in the evening, but only ONCE a day! The rest of the day I will drink WATER. I can also have herbal tea. I have a lot of herbal tea on hand, so I should really use that up. 
  3. We will learn portion control! This means smaller portions! And bigger portions of vegetables compared to the other stuff on our plates! We can eat slower also to help make those portions seem to be bigger than they actually are.
  4. We will get up and MOVE! There is no reason to not exercise! We will find something we like to do and do it! I personally get bored easily, so I will probably find several somethings to do! One thing we like to do together is take walks, so we might take an after dinner walk daily. I have more weight to lose than DH does, so I will probably find one other way to move during the day. I like to do workout videos, so I might do some of those, and then play on the WII Fit.
  5. Eat more natural food! We eat a lot of processed foods, so we really need to get back to the earth and eat more whole grains, fruits, and vegetables and less CRAP! We are going to find a way to do all of this without blowing our budget!
So, I will be posting our progress here and let you know how things are going!

1 of 365 by photogrrl77 · 365 Project

So, I have decided to join in the 365 photo a day project!:) Maybe this will help my creative blocks!:)

1 of 365 by photogrrl77 · 365 Project