Thursday, March 27, 2008

Adios Mayer Family....We Love You!

(Trista, Julia, & Emily - she's my little sista)

Our great friends, the Mayers are moving to Texas. We had a girls' night Tuesday as a last hurrah and it was a blast. We went to Red Robin in our jammies and people looked at us like we were nuts so cool. Here are a few pics from that night. Looking at these pictures, you would never guess that none of us even drink alcohol. Actually, all of us were drinking freckled strawberry lemonade...yum!

(Me, Ginny, & Carol)

(Becca, Me, Ginny, Carol, Trista, & Julia)

There is just something special about a friendship where you never have to question whether to be your whole self. Where the comfort level is such that you are never embarassed in front of that person. Love her to death. Hope to visit her soon!

Here are some pics of our kids together on the evening we said goodbye.

(Taylor & Jonathan)

(Brooklyn wants to marry Zach in the Temple. Here she is savoring the moment...)

Spring Break - Wednesday

So my kids are on Spring Break this week and we've been having a blast. I'm going to be posting a little about each day, but they will be out of order...oh well! Here's Wednesday.

We had breakfast a Chick-fil-A and then went to see Horton Hears a Who with my mom and nephew, Trevor. It was really cute. Not hilarious funny like I thought, though.

Then the kiddos and I went to the playground at their elementary school. There is a map there on the blacktop and Taylor wanted me to show her Utah. So we did.

Then we played on the cool stuff there.

Mike called and wanted to look at puppies. So we did that. I'm not ready to get another dog right now. They really are a lot of work, especially when they are puppies. After that it was dinner time, so we went to a fun place we enjoy. I had a coupon from the entertainment book, of course!

The not so cool part of our day was that we had to say our goodbyes to our friends, the Mayers. Our families have gotten really close, but they are moving to Texas.....hopefully temporarily. They feel like this is home and want to be back within a few years. Here are all the kids together.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Easter Sunday - Brrrrrr

So on Easter Sunday it was pretty chilly here. I wanted a family picture of everyone in their Easter duds, but I didn't know how to set the timer on my camera and there wasn't another person to do it. Soooo, here is our family in several pics!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

My Hair Story

I recently got my hair cut (about 3 weeks ago) and am so glad I did. It had been so long since I'd cut it (probably since October or November) so it was kind of a desperate situation. Sooooooo here it is!

When I got married I had a similar version of this cut 10 years ago. Since then it has varied much but seems to always come back to this style that just works for me. It is quick and easy to fix, but feels like there is a "style" there. Growing up, through high school and part of college I had all one length hair about to the middle of my back. When the Jennifer Aniston thing hit in about 1996 I did that and it seemed adventurous. Once I got a stacked bob, that was it.

The photo to the right is me and some college buddies my freshman year. I don't have any other pics digital, and you can't see my hair that good in this shot, but can you believe I am the same person? I can't! I'm the 2nd from the right in the tealish shirt.

What is your hair story?

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Tackle It Tuesday

I need to get off my bottom motivated and get some serious stuff done around this house today. I decided to participate in this fun blog carnival thing-y called Tackle it Tuesday over at 5 Minutes for Mom to help give me the umph to get something spectacular done. So I thought to myself, "Self, what can you do that will make a huge impact around here?" I decided to clean my laundry room closet. Now I feel very blessed because it is upstairs where all of the bedrooms are so the laundry monster pile doesn't have to live downstairs in the public spaces. But today I am going to clean and wipe things down in there. It gets really dusty due to all that laundry lint. I think straightening up in there will motivate me to stay on top of the laundry. Lately it feels like it has been on top of me weighing me down. I will add pictures to this post later, but I wanted to write this part early, so I will be accountable to all of you! OK - I'm off to tackle it!

To see more things that are being/have been tackled today, check out Tackle it Tuesday here.

OK - I was craving some more beautiful surroundings for my bloggy home. I searched for all day a reasonable amount of time before finding this new and improved template. I am not HTML or graphic design savvy at all, so I had to rely on those free downloads that are available.
What do you think? Is it funner more fun to visit a blog that looks pretty? I think yes. And I also learned how to do the cross out a word feature. That is my very first HTML. I am so proud of me! By the way, I love comments. They make me happy. I can't help it. Just wanted you to know. Next I need a cute header to complete my makeover. Is the only way to get a really cute one to design it myself in photoshop or pay someone to do it for me? Cause if you didn't notice, I'm too cheap frugal to shell out any money for that. And I don't want to overdo it with the whole cross out word feature, but it is fun. Oh well.
So what do you think of the new diggs?

Monday, March 17, 2008

Great Week @ CVS!

I'm sorry to those of you who don't have a CVS nearby, but I have to share my sweet deals from today! I seriously got all of this stuff for less than $3.50 out of pocket. I had a CVS gift card from a prescription so I actually only paid about $.80 out of pocket for real. I went in with a dollar bill and came out with change and all of this stuff! We will use each and every item and our wallet will thank us! If you do have CVS nearby and you want to learn how to score like me, check out this website at moneysavingmom. Crystal has a great tutorial to help you get it all figured out!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

So today I made sure that the kiddos were wearing green (after Mike reminded me & they were already dressed in other clothes) so that no one would be pinched. The kids were excited to help set the table for dinner and to decorate the dining area with the various St. Patrick's Day arts and crafts they had completed at school. It was a very festive environment for our St. Patrick's day Breakfast for Dinner Night - green eggs, hash browns, and sweet rolls with green icing.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Meal planning using sales - Frugal Friday

For a long time when planning my menu, I would scour my cookbooks, pick out some recipes, then make a shopping list with the ingredients I needed.
Now, I buy meat when it is a great price. I try not to pay over $1.99 a pound for any type of meat. I stock up when it is at a monumental low price. I also do that with other food and things.
I now have a good little stockpile. I pick my recipes based on what I already have. Sometimes I search the internet when I know I have some ingredients that would make something great together, but not sure of a recipe on how to do it. I have found some great meals that way. I really enjoy the challenge of doing my meal planning that way and love how it feels to know that it didn't cost much to make. I have also began to make more from scratch, when needed. It's usually not as tough as I previously thought.
I know this is not a new idea, but it is something that I have recently begun to do and it is really working well for me. Thought I would share! Check out Biblical Womanhood here for other great frugal ideas.

100 Things About Me - I've Been Tagged!

Ok- so this is my first tag and it is a doosie! If you can stand to read 100 things about me, then you deserve a high five. Here goes...

1. This is my first time being tagged in blog-world.
2. My husband & I got married 3.5 months after meeting for the first time.
3. I kind of stalked, I mean admired Mike (hubby-o) from afar before he even knew I existed.
4. I'm 5'1'' tall on a good day.
5. I have 2 kids, Taylor & Zach.
6. At night when I tuck Zach in he says, "Goodnight Mommy, m'love!" (like my love) in his cute little voice.
7. Taylor loves to read. She is great at it too.
8. Zach is in kindergarten and is really picking up those reading skills also.
9. I am very outgoing and not afraid to speak up.
10. I married someone who likes to keep to himself much of the time.
11. That's ok because somehow we balance each other out.
12. I have lived in Virginia, Hawaii, and Utah.
13. I adore, adore, ADORE, the beach, and thus loved Hawaii.
14. This is tough...100 things are a lot!
15. I love vacations!
16. Even small's just breaking out of the routine and setting off on an adventure that thrills me.
17. My favorite vaction places usually involve sand and water.
18. But Disney World is up there too.
19. I obsess about planning sometimes.
20. I really went nuts when we were planning our trip to Disney, color coded itenerary note cards anyone?
21. I love Virginia in the Spring.
22. Like now when the flowering trees start blooming, the whole place comes to life.
23. My favorite flowering bush is a hydrangea, oh wait...and forsythia.
24. I can't keep plants alive in my house.
25. I'm not very good at keeping them healthy outside either.
26. But I will never plant fake plants in the ground outside.
27. I am very frugal.
28. And I LOVE being frugal.
29. Even if I didn't have to be frugal, I would anyway. It's like a sport to me.
30. And I'm always on the winning team.
31. Isn't it fun to be good at something?
32. I am also good at decorating...I enjoy it a lot.
33. I am good at being fun.
34. I love to read.
35. I am like Mel and when I am reading something good, it takes over my life.
36. I mean no housework or laundry, only the basics.
37. I turn on music and sing really loud while I clean, it makes it funner.
38. I'm pretty sure that funner isn't a word.
39. That's ok because I was an English major and that gives me the authority to make up words at will.
40. The best one I ever made up was DEMATERNITIZE.
41. As in "I'm not pregnant anymore...I need to dematernitize my closet."
42. I love my neighborhood.
43. And my house.
44. Even though the yard doesn't really have much grass.
45. I bought some cute new silk flowers and ribbon to springify my front door. I have a cute metal bucket that hangs there.
46. See, I did it again...springify isn't a word either.
47. Free is my favorite price, but almost free is good too.
48. I spend a lot of time on the computer.
49. I made myself a chore chart to motivate myself.
50. It works for the kids, why not?
51. OK - halfway through.
52. Pretty colors and fonts make me happy.
53. I refuse to have any white walls in my house.
54. I like to hang plates on the walls.
55. Sometimes when I get home from grocery shopping I only put the freezer and fridge stuff away right away.
56. The other stuff sometimes has to wait till later.
57. Like the next day.
58. I love yard sales & can't wait for the season to start.
59. I also love shopping at the Goodwill.
60. Being a mom is both the hardest and most fulfilling thing I've ever done.
61. I like to smile at strangers.
62. And people I know, too.
63. Why be grumpy?
64. But I am grumpy if I don't get enough sleep.
65. And for some reason, I need more sleep than the average person does.
66. When I was a teenager, I was tested for mono several times because I was always tired.
67. I never had it.
68. Mike always comments and/or thanks me when I clean something out and/or cook a meal.
69. He appreciates the small things.
70. I'm grateful for that, because life keeps us really busy doing the small things.
71. I just got a bunch of cute shirts from Old Navy for $1.99 each.
72. I also walked away from several good shirts because I didn't want to pay $7.99.
73. Told you I was frugal.
74. I "bought" free cereal today at Kroger.
75. I love being a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
76. I currently have 2 callings.
77. Gospel Principles teacher and Activity Day Girls assistant leader.
78. I love teaching Gospel Principles.
79. Sometimes the girls in Activity Days are way to crazy and loud.
80. My husband has the flu right now.
81. I feel bad because he feels bad.
82. I live 3 miles from my mom and dad.
83. I live too many miles from my in-laws.
84. I am one of the few that totally loves her mother and father inlaw.
85. How lucky am I?
86. My college roomate from Hawaii recently found me on facebook.
87. After about 13 years!
88. It is so great to be back in touch with her! I've thought of her often!
89. I love warm weather.
90. Today is is 75 degrees!
91. I am going on a girls night with my girlfriend tonight.
92. We are celebrating her birthday.
93. I have 2 best girlfriends.
94. The other one is moving to Texas in 2 weeks.
95. I will really miss her.
96. But she will be back in a couple of years.
97. I like to surround myself with outgoing people.
98. I am addicted to Lost.
99. Can you believe they are still lost?
100. Now you know more about me than you did before. Good for you for sticking with it!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Decorating on the CHEEEEP!

OK - I know that I spelled CHEAP wrong in the title, but I did it on purpose. You have seriously got to check out the Nesting Place. The Nester has a lovely blog and a lovely home that she decorates with frugal abandon! She also makes frequent references to BIRDS, note the name of her blog, thus the misspelling in the title. I love to read all her posts, but some of my favorites are about how she mistreats her windows (get it, not window treatments, but window mistreatments, ha ha). She has a whole window mistreatment series going on. You can find the other posts here, here, here, and here. I get so inspired by her no fuss decorating and wanted to share it with all of you. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Kitchen Tip Tuesday

I found this fun post at Tammy's Recipes and decided to participate this week. I LOVE to read tips that will make my life easier. Here's something I do that my husband loves.

It is actually something that his mom did growing up, so I can't take the credit! Hi Ruth Ann! :) Whenever I use canned pineapple (for fruit salad or smoothies, for example) I pour the juice from the can into a ziploc baggie and pop it in the freezer. It makes for a yummy treat later and saves something that would have just been poured down the sink.

For more kitchen tips, check out Kitchen Tip Tuesdays.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

Hope y'all had a great weekend. Here's the menu for this week.

Dinners -
1)Roast in the Crockpot, canned veggies, applesauce, homemade bread
2)Beef Stew (with leftovers from the roast), bread, green salad
3)Spaghetti - served with Italian Cheese Bread...oh my...I can't wait to try that one out! I'll let you know how it is! :) - this is a leftover meal from last week I didn't get to.
4)Homemade Pizza, green salad
5)Appetizer night
6)Hotenanny - yummy breakfast dish to serve with fresh fruit, whipped cream, & powdered sugar! - or with maple syrup (like pancakes)

To see more yummy menus, check out's Menu Planning Monday!