Thursday, January 31, 2008

Frugal by default

WOW! what a week this has been for all of us trying to win prizes on the bloggygiveaway. If you have not been there yet you better hurry! It took me days to get through all the almost 900 entries, and that was skipping some that did not sound like something I was interested in.

For me this was a frugal week. Not just because I was sitting here going through the giveaways and trying for free things. Like most people I can't be in two places at once, so sitting her kept me from thinking about what I "needed" from the store, or getting a drink or a snack. Saved me food, gas, money and drink. How much more frugal can you get? Anyone else want to sponsor a giveaway this week?

This did get me thinking though. If we find things to keep us busy we will not be spending the time to spend money we do not need to or eating when we do not need it. When I run to the store for a need I will often pass a want on the way to the need, this week I did not take the time, I got the need, no time for the want. Usually I take a list and get what is on it, but as I am doing this I am passing things I "forgot" to put on the list. You know, things like ice cream or maybe bacon etc.

My frugal idea for this week is to make a list and stick to it. Keep busy so what is in the pantry or frig do not haunt you. It sure helped me this week.

For more frugal ideas look here.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Giveaway suggestions

Everyone is caught up in the bloggy giveaway this week and I almost forgot about Works for Me Wednesday!

With all the hoopla over the giveaway, and I have been into it as much as anyone, I would like to make a few suggestions for those participating, both in the offering and in the trying to win.

If you are commenting to try to win:
  • follow the directions! If it says go to such and such a site and pick out something, do it! I look over comments, not only on mine but on others and so often people do not do what they are supposed to. One said send an email to her, but people commented asking to be counted in.
  • Make sure there is a way to contact you. Last giveaway I had someone picked and there was no way to get to them. I tried and finally gave up and picked someone else.
If you are offering a giveaway:

  • Make your directions clear. I have hunted through some blogs where I was not sure when the drawing was or even if a comment was all that was needed. It was not clear.
  • relax your spam filter. I hate wanting to try for a prize, go through all the one site to another, pick something or comment on something and then have the filter tell me something I wrote seemed like spam. Most I have no problem with, but one in particular was very difficult and I was disappointed.
  • Make sure you have the right link on Mr. Linky. Several of them were errors and I could not get to the post. One had the name in twice on the same line and after trying all kinds of things I made it to the blog, others I could not get there.
These giveaways are fun, as are the carnivals and other blog interactions, but they could be less frustrating for all with just a little more carefulness.

You may be wondering where my giveaway is on this blog, well, I hope to have it up in a day or so, Check back. In the meantime, you can go to Meet Me In The Garden to try for my giveaway there.

Check out Rocks in My Dryer for more WFMW posts.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Happy Birthday Honey!

Today is my husband's birthday. Normally I would have all things planned out with a cake and kids over for dinner. Instead we have been working all day. He works at our church, so that meant all the normal work there, plus Sunday's we clean some offices. It is now 6:30 and I am getting ready to cook dinner, but have to wait since one of the kids is on their way to see him.

Today is special, but I can't seem to make is special with all that is going on. So, I am making this post a tribute to a wonderful husband. I wish everyone could have a husband like mine, I am so blessed.

Rick is 57 today. Grampa to 18, dad to 3 and step dad to 5 more. And Husband to one very, very fortunate woman! ME!

Happy Birthday Honey!! I love you!!!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

This is more like it!

Yesterday I wrote about how cold it is here for being in this part of Texas. I have good news! Today started out at about 30 degrees, but we went up to 69 by noon. Ahhhhhhh it felt so good. Tomorrow is supposed to be warmer and Monday even warmer.

Yes, this is what I like about Texas!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Baby, It's Cold Outside... and inside!

I do not know what they are talking about with "global warming" because it sure is cold outside!

On January 7th I left Texas for Maine with a stop in NC. It was warm the day I left, was warm in NC and was freezing rain in ME. On the day I left ME it was snowing, many flights were canceled and I was concerned about getting home. I wanted to get back to my warm home.

Well, I got back, but it has not been warm since. For our area of Texas this is way too cold.

Our home is heated with propane and is a double wide mobile home that has the space underneath. Even though we have it (mostly) skirted the floor gets cold in places. Heat does not make it to our bedroom very well, and that is cold in the winter and hot in the summer, since the air conditioner runs through the furnace and it is at the far end of the home.

Propane is not cheap, never has been but it is even worse to use now. Up north, we could use K-1 or oil. Not here. So, I am finding myself trying to find ways to stay warm and not use much propane. I am going to share what I am finding, some I have tried and some I have not implemented yet. I want you to please give me any other ideas you may have.

  1. The floor is cold, so I wear several pairs of socks and put a few pairs in my granddaughter as well.
  2. I keep the heat at about 65, but with the dampness these last few days it feels colder, so I have blankets laying around on the couch, chairs etc.
  3. I block the windows with drapes and keep them closed. I still do not have any for some of the windows.
  4. The sun comes in the back, if it ever comes back out, and I let the sun in, then close the drapes when it moves to the other side of the house.
  5. Bake stuff, this helps warm and uses the propane for something besides the heat.
  6. a small electric heater is in the bathroom and is used for showers etc.
  7. Lots of blankets on the bed!
Now, can anyone who uses propane to heat give me any more ideas?

For more frugal ideas go to Biblical Womanhood and check out the posts!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Breakfast Pizza

Some time ago I had a shower to go to and was asked if I could bring something in the way of a brunch finger food.

I love to cook and bake, but had no idea for a brunch finger food! My husband had some ideas and we bounced it around for a bit until I thought about how pizza places have breakfast pizzas. I had never had one, but thought maybe it would be worth a try.

Now, some of you that have been reading my blog or that know me personally know I do not follow recipes that are on paper. I may look at them (yes, I have a full bookshelf of recipe books! I just like to collect them and read titles for ideas) but I usually end up making my own as I go by changing what is written down.

For this shower I went to and searched for a breakfast pizza. I found a recipe and looked at it and then went and made it my way. It was a big hit, everyone asked me for my recipe and I had to tell them exactly what I am going to tell you. My way, play with it and make it yours.

You need:

  • 1 roll of crescent rolls (Pillsbury or store brand or whatever, the ones in the refrigerator section.
  • grated cheese ( I think I used about 2 cups per pan)
  • about 6 eggs
  • 1/3 C. milk
  • salt and pepper and nutmeg if you like
  • bulk sausage or bacon

set oven to about 400 and let preheat while mixing the rest.

brown sausage or bacon. If using bacon crumble it up after browning.

unroll the crescent rolls and press into a 9 X 13 pan. press the seams together so they make a flat crust on the bottom of the pan. Place the sausage or bacon on top, spreading evenly. put the cheese on top of the meat, spread evenly.

Mix the eggs, milk, salt and pepper (nutmeg if desired) in a separate bowl or measuring cup.

Pour on top of meat and cheese.

Bake till egg is set and solid (about 15 - 20 minutes)

I made two of them, one bacon and one sausage. They were eaten up in no time flat, so if you are taking them somewhere, make plenty! Works for Me!!

Abortion: The Current Holocaust

In my last post I had a picture of our new grandson Caden. I look with awe at him, so little yet so human. All features perfectly formed, hands, toes, ears and eyes. Beautiful! He cries. He eats. He wets. He yells when they take his temp, change his diaper or he is uncomfortable. Look at his little picture. A bundle of joy, a little bundle yes, but one of the greatest miracles.

From conception he was being formed. Before his mother knew he was there, he was a human with God's eye on him.

What breaks my heart in looking at him is that people abort babies like this. They say they are not human, not a real person, don't feel the pain of the abortion. Look at him and tell me that he is not human, does not feel pain or is not a real person yet. Just because he is out of the womb does not make him human, but inside he was not.

How confused our world has become in their self-centeredness and sin. They have debates, laws etc over when human life starts, when is a "fetus" a human? What else could it be? While looking up info on abortion for this post I found this article as well as others. I will share some things I have found.

  • Abortion is legal in this country until the day of birth. Look at Caden? We kill babies like him every day in this country and around the world. For the horrible techniques used see this site. Again, look at Caden and imagine them pulling him apart piece by piece till they get him all out. Makes you sick doesn't it. I want to go vomit right now.
  • Some people use abortion as a birth control. (Day after pill especially)
  • There have been over 46 million abortions since it became legal in 1973.
  • There are about 1.3 million a year in the US. This is the stages of pregnancy they are done yearly, (approximately)
    Gestational Age Percentage Yearly Total
    Less than 9 weeks 57.9% 752,700
    9-10 weeks 20.3% 263,900
    11-12 weeks 10.2% 132,600
    13-15 weeks 6.2% 80,600
    16-20 weeks 4.3% 55,900
    21+ weeks 1.5% 19,500
If you Google abortion, or similar words you will find many statistics, pros, cons and even some weird stuff where people try to blame Christ for killings at clinics. What you need to look hard for is the effect that abortion has on the mother. Not only does it kill babies, it kills something inside a mother who has murdered her child.

We have several groups in this area that help abortion parents with the emotional and spiritual trauma that they live with after they have had an abortion. Many do not even realize that it stems from the abortion itself.

I look at Caden, so small yet so human. A mom can abort this baby and it would be fine with the USA, yet if the child is born and a parent decides they do not want it and they or the doctor begins tearing off it's arms, legs etc till it is dead we would call it murder, abuse etc. Same baby. Same age.

I do not believe in going around killing the doctors, bombing the clinics etc, but I do believe we need to reach out. Give the truth. Stand up for the lives of these little ones.

Caden has reminded me anew about the awful holocaust going on around the world. The murder of our own little ones.

Monday, January 21, 2008

He Now Has a Name!

As I said in my previous post, we have a new grandson! Our 18th grandchild and after much debate they have given him a name.

This precious little one is

Caden Beau Loden

He joins sister Carlie

We still ask for continued prayers for him as he is so small. he is doing great though!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

A New Little Bundle! (And I mean little!!)

Today we had the pleasure of meeting a new grandson. Here he is. Born 12:15 and weighing a whopping 3lbs 9 ozs and 16 inches long. He arrived 2 months early and I am hoping by tomorrow he will have a name!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Some odd ways to save

It is Friday again and time for us to share our frugal ways through Biblical Womanhood.

This week I want to pass on a few simple things I do to save money.

First there is gas. The price of it is enough to make you want to forget about a car, yet we all need one. Besides the guides to tell you to keep tires inflated, drive slower etc, I have another way I save at the pump.
Check your area and see if you have any stations that use the National Payment Card way to pay. Here, there are some stations (they are few) where you can pay with your driver's license. You go online and sign up and then you are able to use your driver's license like a debit card. It saves .10 a gallon at our station.

Another trick I found I do has to do with the slow hot water at this time of year. It does not get that cold in Texas, but we do get cold. My water heater is far from the kitchen so hot water gets left in the pipes to get cold. Then, when you want a little hot water, you need to run it forever and then it gets cold again. Now, for small jobs, I use the microwave. We pay for our water and pay for the electricity to heat it, so if I only need a little it is only a few seconds in the microwave. One place I found I was really wasting the water was getting a warm wash cloth to wash the baby's face. Now I wet the wash cloth and throw it in the microwave for a few seconds and I have a warm wash cloth in seconds instead of minutes and there is no water and electricity waste.

The last one for today has to do with my cats. I realize I am not the most frugal person when it comes to feeding them, but maybe there are others like me. I give both dry and canned food to them. One cat is old and can't eat the dry well, so she needs the canned. I was buying the smaller cans (not the tiny cans, but the smaller ones) and then splitting it for two cats. Now I buy the Friskies large cans and pay less than the two a day of the others and get 3 meals or more for three cats out of a can. (Remember I mix with dry). It saves money and they are still fed and happy.

For more frugal ideas, go to Biblical Womanhood.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Greeting Card Organization

Today's Works for me is something I used to do and have gotten away from. However, with family as it is and the birthdays sneak up, I am trying to get back to doing it this year.

If you have a large family and are like me, it seems that it is always somebodies birthday and you are always sending that last minute card. Drives me crazy, as I know when the dates are most of the time, yet seem to get the card and forget to mail it or just forget the day all together until it is right there on me.

Some years ago, I had the problem licked and was doing quite well. My system was that I would buy cards ahead, sometimes picking out several months worth at a time. I would write in them, sign them, address them and then put the date they need to be mailed under where the stamp would go. If they were cards that would get a money gift in I would not seal them up until I put that in there.

I have known of some people who do this with their bills at the beginning of the month and then send them on the day. I messed up the checkbook when I tried that, but the cards worked every time.

Hopefully that means my cards will all be on time this year, since that always worked for me in the past!

For more Works for me Wednesday ideas hop on over to Rocks in my Dryer!


I am home! I wondered if I was going to make it.

First, I want to let those that commented to me over this last week I will be getting to some of you. I am late since I was not home.

After spending a wonderful week with my family in NC and ME the day came for me to depart Maine. I was worn as I love the kids, but love my husband the kids here in Texas. Since I was feeling homesick for my husband I was looking forward to getting back to him and out of the cold and snowy northeast.

Monday morning we woke up to this!

I had lived in the snow all my life, until a little over three years ago. I remember when it started to get to the end of summer in 2004 I found myself really dreading another winter. All my life I had snow, yet here I was thinking I can't handle another snowy winter. Why? I did not know then, but I knew that this feeling was strong. I met Rick shortly after and we married and I moved to central Texas. No snow! I love being able to say "I am going to the airport and fly to Maine" and know that there will be no snow to keep me from getting to the airport or to keep the plane from taking off.

Now, here I was, in Maine and a flight scheduled to get me back to Texas, and I was looking at all this white stuff coming down.

All morning we were seeing snow and seeing flights canceled. All but mine. It kept saying that it would be on time, but we were an hour from the airport and the snow was piling up!

I arrived safe and sound, thanks to my oldest son and his good driving and a heavy car. We were still sure it would be canceled, but they told us it was coming in and the flight was in the air on the way to Portland Jetport. I sent my son on his way back home in the daylight and had good faith that I would not be sleeping in an airport on the trip.

Plane arrived, we loaded and after two deicing and one ice prevention spray we were off. Since we left late I had to rush at the transfer in Cincinnati, but I made it to the waiting arms of my husband about 11 PM last night.

Ahhhhhhhhhh the warm weather, no snow and no winter coat!

Friday, January 11, 2008

My Not So Frugal Mistake

It is Frugal Friday at Biblical Womanhood and I am writing today about a mistake I made that was not so frugal!
Right now I am traveling. As you can tell from previous posts, I was given a trip to NC and Maine to see my kids that are there. I planned the trip and thought I had cared for everything.
All was fine for the first leg of the journey, to NC. From NC to Maine I was traveling with Continental airlines. I have not had good experience with them and tried to plan accordingly. Last year I had to make this trip with them and sat for 4 hours in one airport because the pilot fell out of the plane when he was boarding. Yes, you read that right! They had to fly in a pilot from somewhere else and all of us sat for the 4 hours. On the way home they left me stranded in Newark NJ airport for 18 hours. I had to sleep in the airport, between floor and seats and it was pretty miserable.
So, this year I made sure I had a blanket and pillow in my carry on and at the airport realized I did not have a book along. I went to the bookstore in the airport and bought two books. Now I usually get my books from such luxurious places as paperbackswap or half price books or ebay. Now I was faced with retail, and at an airport as well. I decided to bite the bullet and get them so I had something with me anyway, but it hurt big time.
So, my frugal Friday advice is to put a book or two on the top of your traveling list. It sure hurts when you are used to being frugal and have your set places that you go and then get stuck with retail. OHHH The pain!!!
For more frugal ideas head over to Biblical Womanhood!

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

How Do You Make A 3D Picture?

Since it is backwards works for me Wednesday over at Rocks In My Dryer I am going to play along and ask for some help.

I saw a picture some time ago that I have been trying to figure out how to make and am asking help to see if anyone knows what it is and how to make it.

Here is the description as best as I can write it.

It was a large photo behind glass, framed as you normally would frame a picture. However there was several more layers on the glass. The flooring was cut out of other pictures and a layer put down flat on the glass, then another layer was added where there were pieces of the flooring on top of the flat layer. There were the same with the shoes etc, making everything with a 3 D look. The flared skirt had several layers and was actually flared off the glass.

The whole picture was 3D and looked so nice. I can't figure out what they used as it did not feel like regular decoupage.

Does anyone know what it is called and how to do it or where I can find out how to make it?

Thank you!

For more questions and answers hope on over to Rocks In My Dryer.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Happy Anniversary Rick!

It is my 3rd anniversary. I am married to the most wonderful man in the world and I love him dearly. He is a gem and I am so happy God brought him to me.

How are we celebrating our anniversary?

Let me tell you...

He is in Texas and I am in NC. Yes, my husband has sent me to see the kids. I will be here for a few days and then off to Maine for a few days. A wonderful gift from the kids and my hubby.

I made it here just fine and am enjoying my family. Lexi is entertaining. When asked if she wants to learn to walk she says no. Her mind is made up, no walking. I guess she is closer to the floor when she crawls.. just in case she falls. She is no dummy!

I will try to get some pictures and keep you informed as I travel, so, until next time, have a great day!!

Saturday, January 5, 2008

So Much to Do So Little Time

It is Saturday, I leave Monday to go see the kids in NC and ME. I am so excited, I have so much to do to be ready and here I am doing my blog!

If you do not hear much from me over this next week it is because I will be away until the 14th. I will have some computer access, but will probably be too busy enjoying my family to write. Believe me, when I get back I will have stories and pictures.. oh yeah, as long as I remember to pack the camera!

This trip will be different than the others. I only have one week to see everybody, well the kids and grand kids, that are not in Texas. I will be spending from Monday till Thursday morning in NC with Jessica, Beauty from Chaos writer, and mama to Lexi. Then I will go to ME to see the family there.
My husband is on the left in this picture, but the rest are grand kids from ME. (The date is wrong, it was taken in August 2007) And, to answer you before you ask, no this is not all of the grand kids, there are two grown ones that are in ME but not in the picture and then 3 more here in Texas with a 4th due in March.

Blessed is the man with his quiver full! We are so blessed.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Reuse, Recycle, Remake

Part of being frugal is to try to recycle, reuse or remake what you already have. I am amazed at the creativeness some people have to do this. I can take simple things, like using coffee containers for cookies, leftovers etc. But when I see people using and reusing things I never would have thought to try I am awed.

There was a woman in one of our churches that loved our kids. She was an elderly woman and loved to sew. She would go to the goodwill or such places and buy huge ladies dresses. She would get them for about nothing or nothing and then cut them up and make my daughter the most beautiful clothes.

I have seen people make skirts out of jeans and purses out of jeans.

One of the ways we can all save money is to start looking for what we can do with things before we just chuck them out. I have a few sources that I would like to recommend.

How Can I Recycle This has many ideas for what you can do with things before throwing them. If you do not find what you are looking for write in and people will answer you. There is everything from extra cucumbers to old T-shirts.

Waste Nothing is a yahoo group where people share with one another on how to use everything. I have been amazed at the items that they find uses for and saves money.

The Tightwad Times is also a yahoo group that is connected with the tightwad gazette.

The Instructables is a website that has instructions for anything from the weird to fun to frugal.

I know there are many things we could be using and not tossing. I see what I throw away and know that much of it is money going in the garbage if I would just stop and find a way to reuse or remake what I have.

How about you? Do you reuse, remake, recycle? Hope over to Biblical Womanhood for more frugal ideas.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Good Diet

Twas the day after Christmas, and all through the house
Nothing would fit me, not even a blouse.
The cookies I'd nibbled, the eggnog I'd taste
At the holiday parties had gone to my waist.
When I got on the scales there arose such a number!
When I walked to the store (less a walk than a lumber).
I'd remember the marvelous meals I'd prepared;
The gravies and sauces and beef nicely rared,
The wine and the rum balls, the bread and the cheese
And the way I'd never said, "No thank you, please."
As I dressed myself in my husband's old shirt
And prepared once again to do battle with dirt---
I said to myself, as I only can
"You can't spend a winter disguised as a man!"
So--away with the last of the sour cream dip,
Get rid of the fruit cake, every cracker and chip
Every last bit of food that I like must be banished
Till all the additional ounces have vanished.
I won't have a cookie--not even a lick.
I'll want only to chew on a long celery stick.
I won't have hot biscuits, or corn bread, or pie,
I'll munch on a carrot and quietly cry.
I'm hungry, I'm lonesome, and life is a bore---
But isn't that what January is for?
Unable to giggle, no longer a riot.
Happy New Year to all and to all a good diet!


ThriftyFun for Everyone.

Isn't it great to be back on schedule? I love having a break to spend with family, but it is nice to be on a schedule too.

I want to share a website that has a variety of newsletters also. Actually I am sharing three, one here and two on my other blog.

Thrifty Fun is a website that shares many ideas, as well as a tip of the day. I find recipes, crafts, money saving ideas and "how to's" . Here are the newsletters available. You can go to their site and find many ideas as well as post your own to share with others.

  • Tip of The Day (daily)
  • Daily Thrifty Tips (weekdays)
  • ThriftyFun Recipes (weekdays)
  • ThriftyFun Crafts (weekly)
  • Saving Money On... Newsletter (weekly)
Here is a sample of their Daily Tips.

Many of the ideas work for me and I wanted to share them with you.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

New Year, New Life

As we approach this new year and think of "resolutions" I have long ago decided not to make any. Like miserable failure they are gone and broken before the first week.

As I look back over the year I am pondering what and where I have changed. How is my walk with the Lord? Better than a year ago? Worse? What about my serving Him?

As I look to this new year, I am not setting resolutions, but rather some goals. I have not formulated them all in my head yet, but have the main idea. I need to sit down and put them on paper. I want to write, I want to do something to earn money at home, I want to lose weight. All want to do, but will I?

How about you? Lots of "want to's" but will they get done?

I am breaking mine into steps, maybe my steps will help you too.

  • Put down my major goals on paper. One piece of paper for each goal.
  • Now, break them down into the smaller goals. For instance, I want to lose 30 lbs. So I need to set a small goal of maybe 3 lbs in two weeks. So under my goal of weight, it will look something like this: 3 lbs in 2 weeks 6 lbs in a month 10 lbs by 6 weeks etc.
  • Do this for each goal.

I do not plan on setting very many, I will get discouraged. I am thinking of maybe 3 for the year, if I accomplish them early I can add new.

How about you? What are you going to do for this year? How will your life be different next New Year's Day? I know we can't plan all that will come our way for the new year. I think of how much unplanned has happened in the last year. We do not always have control. I am glad I know the ONE who does have control and that HE will get me through this year as He has in the past. How about you?

Why not have as one of your goals to draw closer to Him. He made you, has a purpose for you and wants to give you that abundant life in Him. Contact me if you have any questions on this Abundant Life.