Monday, March 23, 2009

Coupon Crazy

Okay, I might be totally bragging, but I am totally excited.  I got all of these things at Kmart and Walgreens for $19.25 including tax!  It was  $175.25 originally, but with Kmart double coupon deal and Walgreens deals I saved $155.  It was awesome!  Okay, I'm done now.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

I cried

I am not much of a crier. There is nothing wrong with me, I just don't seem to need to cry very often.  Well I cried yesterday.  I cried and cried.  My kids were staring at me and tears were just streaming down my face---for two hours (off and on).  What was I crying about?  This is the story:  
I sat down in front of the computer to find some pictures I needed for scouts.  As I begin to look for them I couldn't find them on our external storage device(which is where I store all my pictures).  I looked on both computers and they weren't there.  I couldn't find any pictures from 2008.  I begin to panic.  Baby Ashley was born in 2008, there weren't any pictures of her birth. No Easter. No Christmas. No Halloween.  The tears began to flow.  No pictures of Sarah's first bike ride, Ashley's first food, Ashley crawling, sitting up, standing, Jayce's 7th birthday, Lizzy's 3rd birthday, nothing. NOTHING.  I was devastated. I couldn't believe it.  Gone, all gone!  I cried.  I felt such a deep loss.  A year gone.  Now, a year in the real world isn't much, but in the life of a baby and little kids its a huge part of their life-for Ashley her whole life.  I tried to remember what Ashley looked like at 2 months, 4 months, 6 months--I couldn't remember!  I cried even more.  I called my husband and cried some more.  He told me not to worry, when he got home he would check it out.  I continued to search on the computers for the missing files.  Meanwhile, my kids were a little worried.  I don't think they have ever really seen me cry.  They kept looking at me and standing close to me. I explained to them what had happened  and so they kind of understood.  Sarah brought me a picture that she had drawn of outside with a sun and tree and I love you written on the front and back of the page.  It was to replace some of the pictures that were lost.  Jayce told me that there was still one good thing-I could take pictures of the rest of their lives.  They were trying to comfort me.  What sweet kids.  Then I remembered that I had done a year in review book on snapfish a few months ago.  I quickly got online and looked through the pictures.  Oh, thank goodness.  There was about 100 pictures spanning the year.  I still was sad, but I felt so grateful that there were at least 20 of Ashley's first year.   I still felt terrible so I called my mom and cried a little more. 
 The rest of the day was quiet for me and I was still feeling sad, but I was indeed grateful for the few pictures that were left.  I left for scouts and when I came home I went to the computer and was messing around for 45 min or so.  I have a cold so I was sniffling a little.  Jason came in and asked me if I was crying.  I said that I wasn't I just have a cold.  He said that was good because he had found my pictures!  I said what? Where?  I wanted to see them immediately.  It turns out my computer didn't have a map or something to the external hard drive?!  He fixed it to my great relief and now I have them.  All of them--all 2,778 pictures.  Holy Cow -that is a lot of pictures!  I am so grateful for a husband who knows what he is doing.    I cried for nothing.  well-not exactly nothing.  I did realize how much I love pictures, how I love my children at every stage and don't want to forget it, and mostly how sweet those little faces are.  These are some of the pictures I would have "lost." 

It really would have been sad.  I'm glad I still have the pictures and the memories.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Wow, time flies.  So it has been a month and no blog update.  I have been busy with a few new things.  Over the next few days I will play catch up .  Today's catch up is on couponing.  I have become a coupon freek.  You wouldn't believe the free stuff I have gotten over the last month!  So I thought I would share my last great deal I got.  I went to smiths and got 
2 gal whole milk
10 Quaker rice cake snack bags
11 bars Johnson buddies soap
3 rolls
  Then I went to Walgreens and got
4 glade sense and Sprays
1 tooth paste
3 packs of gum
I got all of this for $2.80  including tax.  Holy Crap!  Isn't that awesome.  All from coupons!
So here is a list of the sites I visit most frequently.  They tell you what is on ad and what coupon to use to get the best deal.  It's awesome.
The key to couponing is to start somewhere and then build from there.  I can't tell you how many free toothbrushes, soap, toothpaste, shampoo, toilet paper, body wash, food items, and more that I have gotten through using the coupons from the sunday paper and from printables off the internet.  Have a look and make sure to scroll through older posts to get the idea of what is going on.  My favorite it It's hip to Save.  Have fun!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Oh, Fresh Baked Bread Smells So Good!

So I made bread and I thought I would post how to make it.  I love how the Pioneer Woman posts her recipes so I am going to give that a try.  Here is the basic recipe which makes 6 loaves:
  • 6 T Butter
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 T salt
  • 7 1/2 cups hot water
Put all of the above ingredients into the mixing bowl and let sit 1-2 min.
  • Add 4 T yeast right into the bowl; let sit a few minutes until it gets bubbly.
  • Add 8-12 cups whole wheat flour. Mix well.  I use red hard wheat or the hard white wheat.  It really depends on how much wheat/white flour ratio you want.  Either way the total cups of flour should be 15-17.
  • Add 1/3 cup gluten flour.  This can be purchased at most grocery stores.  The gluten really holds the bread together well.  I freeze my bread and the gluten makes it so it doesn't crumble.  
  • Add 4-8 cups white flour.  I just use regular old flour.  I like to add a little bit of white for texture purposes.  Remember the total cups of flour is 15-17.
The dough will be ready when it no longer sticks to the top of the mixer or to the sides of the bowl.  It is always better to have it be a little sticky than to put to much flour in.  I usually mix it for 2 or 3 minutes once I have added all of the flour.
Spray a big, big bowl with Pam. This bowl is a 42 cup/10L  tupperware bowl.
Put all of the dough into the bowl and spray top of dough lightly with Pam.
Cover loosely with plastic wrap and place in a warm spot. Well--just in the kitchen will do.
The dough will look like this-about double in size.
Punch the dough down and then form into loaves.  I just do the roll and tuck in your hand method.  I don't know how to describe it or to take pictures of that. The loaves may look a little ugly, but don't mess around with them too much or they just get worse.  When they rise, they will be beautiful.
Let rise again until about double in size.  If you don't give the loaves enough time to rise, when you put them in the oven, the top of the loaves will rise really fast causing bigger bubbles to form in the top half of the bread.  It doesn't seem like a big deal, but the top kind of falls apart when you slice it. Generally it takes a good 20-35 min or more to get a good rise.
Place all six loaves in the oven and bake at 350 degrees for anywhere from 25-35 minutes.  It really depends on how accurate your oven is and how much wheat to white flour you put in.  Start with 25 and watch it.  It will be done when the tops are nice and brown.
After you take the loaves out of the oven take them out of their pans and put on a rack to cool.  Make sure to put butter on the tops.  It keeps the crust soft and it sure tastes good!
Presto!  Yummy homemade bread.  The whole process of mixing up the bread only takes about 15 min.  The rest of the time is mostly waiting and watching.  MMMMMM.............  Don't you want to go and make some!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


My little Lizzy turned 3!  What can I say about her?  She is crazy fun, has tons of energy, loves to snuggle and she has a few funny quirks.  

One, she loves shoes.  Anywhere and I mean anywhere we are if someone has taken their shoes off she is over there trying to wear them.  She will watch kids as they come into McDonald's play land and if she likes their shoes she will go and try to put them on as soon as they run off to play.  

Two, she must have a princess dress or a swimsuit on everyday.  I tell her it is too cold and she doesn't care.  So I just put them on over her regular clothes.  

Three, she doesn't like crackers.  I have tried to give her all kinds, and she won't eat them.  Even since she was a baby no crackers for her.  

Four, she can wrestle with the big kids and she loves it.  She has even sent the big ones crying to mom!  

Five, she loves her small little doggies and lately has been carrying this one around in a baggie!? 

 I am surprised how fast time goes.  She was just born yesterday, I swear it!  What a sweet thing she is.  We sure love her.

"We're Mans, for goodness sake!"

  This last weekend we went to Arco and had a great time.  While we were there Jayce and his cousin Brady were watching Harry Potter.  Jayce had never seen the third Harry Potter movie and was loving it.  There are a few pretty scary spots and they were watching it all alone in a dark room with a giant TV that makes you feel like you are right there.  So I check on them a few times and they were hiding under the blankets.  I then went to the kitchen.  A few minutes later Brady came out and told us that the movie was pretty scary. And this is how the rest of it went:

 Me:         Oh, yeah.  Pretty scary?

Brady:     Yeah, me and Jayce were hiding under the blankets.  I got up to turn on the light and then I jumped back under the covers.

 Me:          Oh, yeah.

 Brady:     I told Jayce, "We are mans, for goodness sake!  We're mans and we are scared.  We're mans for                

goodness sake!"

 Me:          Your mans?

 Brady:     Yes, we're mans!

I had a good laugh over that one, but Brady is right they are men.  I love that he was so brave and was trying to help Jayce to be brave too.  It did really get me thinking about how I am raising a boy to become a man.  What a responsibility!  I am glad that my husband is here to teach him all of those man things that I don't quite understand. Case in point.  Who gives a barely-7-year- old boy a snow blower and says go ahead get to it and lets him start it by himself and go to town with it?

By the way, now Jayce thinks part of growing up is having your own snow blower. He has said "I can't believe Wyatt(a friend) doesn't have a snow blower and he's 8!"  I had to explain to him that most children do not have their own snow blower.  He only does because his daddy is crazy!  Okay, I didn't say that last part to him, but only a dad would think this is safe.

Friday, January 30, 2009

25 random things about me

1. I love to run.
2. Two of my kids are sick.
3. My closets need organized.
4. I love fish.
5. I am in a book club.
6. We read the classics.
7. I am surprised how much I love it!
8. I want to learn to fly an airplane.
9. I love to shop the DI.
10. I often ask my husband off the wall questions about random things. 
11. He sometimes pretends to know the answer, but really doesn't
12. I have fun reading other peoples blogs.
13. The last movie I watched was the new batman movie and I was pleasantly surprised-I didn't fall asleep to it.
14. I have learned the older you get the more you realize you don't actually know hardly anything.
15. I am wondering what to make for cub scouts den meeting tonight. I have the dessert.
16. I am tired of filling up sippy cups. Can't they just drink from a cup.
17. I know that is my fault.
18. I am almost 31 and I can hardly believe how time flies.
19. I hate to do the laundry most of all of the chores.
20. I have to have my bed made everyday. It makes me feel good!
21. Every time I hear a beautiful singer, I wish I could sing like them. 
22. I never order a drink at dinner--I am too much of a tight-wad.
23. My gas bill this month was $240--That is nuts.
24. I love to play with my kids and make them laugh.
25. My kids go to the Montessori and I love it.