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Showing posts from September 26, 2010

Happy Anniversay to Us...

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It's now been 17 years since we have said "I do" to each other...that is a long time with the same date in today's world! I made a card for dear hubster - that you can see in the picture, the inside phrase is: Life is a journey, and love is what makes that journey worthwhile. Thank you for walking down that garden path with me - Happy Anniversary! He got me a nice card too - and we went out for dinner. =) The nice thing about your family knowing your goals, they know how to help you. My Mom didn't think we would spring for a dinner out so they watched the kiddo and treated to a nice place (our choice). Hubby picked the local and it was to be a surprise to me. I must admit - I wasn't too excited about his choice...they had "yup-scaled" their menu so things like a Caesar Salad had "olive tapenade" on top of it, etc. I am talking about Lombardino's of Madison. The menu wasn't too promising at first glance. I miss the old "

Snack Helper

Part of the joys of being at a Parent CO-OP school it the interactive sessions. Today was one of those, where we got to be snack helper in her class. What does this entail? Getting there 15 minutes early to help get the class room ready, providing the snack for the kids that day and serving it, staying 15 minutes or so after class and helping clean up. Easy Peasy. It's fun watching your kiddo interact with their peers in a class room setting and seeing how they handle themselves. Snacks for 20 people are no big deal if you are clever with couponing -- we served Juice (FREE), Goldfish crackers ($.50) and string cheese ($2). $2.50 to provide a healthy, peanut free snack to 20 kids...not bad! The hubster and I usually tag team it - we BOTH show up and help out...it becomes kind of a neat "family" thing that way and Sarah seems so proud to introduce us to her classmates. I will have to check the calendar, but I think we are off rotation for another 2 months...I think it

Girl's Day!

Ms Sarah has been so fantastic this week while Daddy is away that I surprised her after school with "girl's day"! Granted every day is "girl's day" when we are alone but we made a special day out of it. =) I dug thru the gift cards/certificates and came up with a $10 Pizza Hut card and a $10 Marcus Movie card - so that was to be our adventure for the day! Pizza Hut has a nice lunch buffet ($6.99 for adults, $2.99 for kids - including their drink). We started out with great salads, then onto a slice of pizza - Chicken Taco Pizza-Yum! Add a little of their pasta bake and finished with some dessert pizza. It was wonderful!! Then on to the theater -- we saw Legend of the Guardians - the Owls of Gahoule, in 2D. I wasn't paying DOUBLE just for the use of a pair of glasses and a few extra effects, knowing we would get up at least twice during the movie for potty breaks. (I was right). Great movie, maybe a little over the head of a four year old, but she lik

Quick Accounting

I thought I would quickly crunch a few numbers for you (and me)! It's been a while since I have done this (late July I think). So let's take a look at what's happened: We had a family vacation up north, ended the gym membership (I still have a year free), made school kits for others, had a few pool parties, finished the driveway project, got the supplies for the stairwell paint job and living room paint job, did a children's resale event, did a few summer fairs/festivals, registered for another season of Park n Rec classes, fully stocked my freezer and pantry, and got whacked with a big hospital bill. Add a few smaller checks from Tupperware (I wasn't working much...) I had another $3,200 to add to my fund. Add that to my total and I have $15,665 in the bank! Not too shabby -- about 40% of my way to my goal and I started on March 1st -- so we are talking 7 months. I know it SEEMS like I am off pace but my big money maker of a season has just begun! I LOVE the holi

Grocery Budget Update

I won't get to the store today, we don't really need anything ;) I did get a little randome shopping done, as I did hit Walgreen's and got Mandarin Oranges (4 for $2) and yesterday, drove thru McDonald's and got a large sweet tea ($1). Then we went to Menards -- I had that $40 gift check to use and they had a big sale on toilet paper. Big Charmin packs for $9.99 - I got 5 of them and used 5 $2 off coupons to end up payiing $2.14 for all 90 double rolls...which is about $27 less than my target price of $.33 a roll. Trust me, we will use it, LOL! Total for the month: $100.00 -27.73 (week 1) -------- $72.27 to go -4.79 (Wags this week) 4 cans oranges for $.50 each, 1 gallon of milk for $2.79 ----------- $67.48 to go -19.76 (this week: Copp's) ----------- $47.72 $17 this week at Cub Foods (rounded up) ----------- $30.72 -$15.12 this week at Copp's ----------- $15.60 -8.21 today at Copp's ----------- $7.39 -1.00 McDonalds -2.00 Walgreen's -2.14 Mena

Hospital Bills...UGH!

Do you understand your current medical insurance? Have you kept up to date with it's annual changes? Have you read over your policy manual every year? We didn't. It was a Sunday and I had a horrible migraine that was going from bad to worse...my meds weren't working at home and I knew I was going to have to go in and get help. They have tried so many things for me over the years and I have had a lot of severe reactions. You name a non-narcotic pain killer and I am allergic to it. :( When you have a migraine, it is important to get that pain level down - they have proven that the higher your blood pressure, the greater the chances of brain damage can occur - especially in extended length migraines. It also triggers nausea, and believe me, the only thing worse than a bad migraine is a migraine where you are tossing your cookies! They used to give me a shot of Demerol and then learned how bad Demerol really is for the body - so they switched me to Morphine. This is on my al

What to stock up on right now...

This is a great post from Hot Coupon World - enjoy! Fall is an important time in a couponer's world. There are heavy sales that are brand-specific that will roll out for the next two months as we start moving towards the holidays. With the advent of back to school, you'll have seen line-wide sales on all things General Mills and Kellogg's, and Campbell's and Quaker are going to be just around the corner. Fall baking sales will be here next month as well, so a good time to restock all your pantry items ahead of the holidays. You should also keep your eyes open for new product roll-outs. They tend to be in the fall as well, and that means high dollar coupons usually follow. And if you're sacking lunches for kids, things like new crop fresh fruit, granola bars, and even pudding cups will be on sale. So get ready for fall sales - they're here and it's a great time to be saving your household money! --------------------------------------------------

Autumn Chowder

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This is the recipe we used to make at our Cafe - hard to believe it's been closed for 12 years now!! This stuff sold out every day we had it -- we kept making bigger and bigger batches and it always sold out! PERFECT for those cooler days of the season and awesome with some crusty rolls or fresh bread. You will love it! It combines the changing colors of the season with warm fuzzy comfort food - it's hearty enough to be a meal by itself. Enjoy! You need: 1 small onion, diced 8 slices bacon 1 can corn (whole kernel) 4-5# potatoes 4 whole carrots or 1 can diced carrots 8 oz brick of cheddar cheese, grated **see note below 8-10 cups chicken broth In one pan, saute onion in a little olive oil. Add to large pot. Put bacon slices in onion pan and cook until crisp, pat dry and dice/crumble - add to large pot. Peel and dice potatoes and raw carrots (if using canned carrots - don't add them until you add the corn) - add to large pot with chicken broth. Simmer until ve

Chicken Chili

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My awesome friend La, who has the blog The Curvy Life, shared her chicken chili recipe a while back...and it intrigued me as it was not a white chicken chili - but a regular chili. The weather has taken a dip for the cooler days of fall and it's time to take some of that cooked, shredded chicken that I got on Wednesday and get busy with it! I did tweak her recipe a bit as hers used salsa and we have the huge bell pepper allergy in this house, so here is my version. Chicken Chili 1 small onion diced, saute in the bottom of the pan in 1-2 TBSP olive oil. Add 1 12 oz can or bottle of beer (yes, I said beer!) Add 2 cans chili beans in chili sauce ( I did one mild and 1 hot) Add 2 cans diced tomatoes and don't forget to add a pinch of sugar to counter the acid in them! Simmer 5-10 min. Add chili powder, cumin, salt/pepper to taste. Stir in 1 can corn and 1-2 cooked off chicken breasts that you have shredded. Simmer 5 min more and dig in! I like to stir in a bit of sour cr

Meal Plan Monday

This week is a little different...I am making a lot of soups/casseroles for a reason. My 88 year old father in law has Colon Cancer and will have his surgery on Tuesday...which will keep him in the hospital for at least a week. That is not the problem...we know he is in GREAT hands, test have already shown that the Cancer hasn't spread and his surgery is pretty straight forward. Here is the problem: My Mother in Law is a blind Diabetic who uses a walker. She can't take care of herself in the sense that she can't read her blood sugar results, can't dish out her own pills and can't cook on the stove/oven. She CAN heat things up in the microwave... She will not be alone for a week, my hubby is "moving in" as it is close to his work. He can zip over and help with her night time meds, take her to visit Dad and more. We also got her a "lifeline" pendant. The one thing we still need to do is make sure she can have dinner. He is usually busy during

Cash Register Surveys...

You have all seen them - they are at the bottom of most register receipts from any kind of store, ranging from grocery stores to restaurants. Many offer an instant gift certificate while some offer a chance at a monthly drawing for everything from $50 to a $5,000 store card. Here is the big question: do you ever jump online and do them? Most people PLAN to do them but get busy and, by the time they get around to it, the window of opportunity has come and gone. I guarantee you one thing: you can't win if you don't play! Make it part of your routine every night - enter the survey's after the kids have gone to bed, before you log into Facebook or whatever message boards you haunt daily. This might not make you a winner, but it will help your chances! Now off to enter my two Copp's receipts from Saturday...