Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Blogging Love

Remember how I said I wanted a break? Well, I did and do- the break just didn't agree with me. What's a girl to do?

Start a fresh new blog of course!

In the end I was right, I can't keep up with SS. I can't keep up with all of the blogs I had been reading. I just got back from a lovely 5 day mini vacation and I'm finally feeling oh so much better. I'm going to try to focus on my own content now, my own life.

Thank you to everyone who left me your comments. I always have a hard time writing good responses. How do you say "ohthankyouohthankyouohthankyoufornoticingmyexistence" without coming off as some sort of nutter?

Well, there it is. I love blogging. I love that people bother to read the simple lines I write (and check out the links for the things I don't write.) If any of you, any of you at all, would still like to check out my latest happenings, mumbling, and the occasional rant (those ants are certainly inspiring one) then I'd love to see you over at my new blog: Waldorf Wishes and Internet Dreams.

It's been a real pleasure!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Somethings Gotta Give-

And right now it's blogging. Actually, no, that's not quite right. It's the internet in general. I wish I could just give it up because it's gotten to the point where it's keeping me from getting things done and doing the things I'd like to be doing. It's distracting in the worst way.

I hope you don't hold it against me but I'm going on hiatus for a bit. I don't know what this means beyond the obvious- I can't keep up with the daily posting schedule anymore. I'm a mom. Heck, I'm a weekday single mom. I also just became the administrative vice president and website admin for my local MOMS Club. This is in addition to: being on my apartment's resident committee, attending weekly ECFE, attempting 3 home "preschool" days weekly, running all the errands/finding all the deals, doing all the cooking, doing a decent chunk of the cleaning (or trying to), attending church twice weekly when I'm able, doing a home bible study weekly, and, beginning the end of August, starting the fall college term as a full time student.

I just can't do it all, though I've certainly been trying. If I could I'd dump the TV and the computer in a garbage can- somewhere where it wouldn't been sucking up 50-75% of my day.

Yes, you read that right. It's like an addiction, as surely as the children who sit in front of a TV mindlessly. I don't want to be that person.

I can't afford to be that mom.

So, for the sake of my family, my home, and my own sanity I'm giving up on blogging for now.

Thank you all for reading my humble slice of the web. It was fun.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Just Because The Pantry's Stocked...

...Doesn't mean we shouldn't still go shopping. First of all let me point out one Q & A from the All You Challenge Blog:

If I don’t spend the full amount I’m allotted one week, can I add the difference to the following week?

No, sorry! Please try to stick to the budget of $25 per person per week.

Yes, you heard them. That means if I had chosen to skip the store I'd be missing out on a stockportunity.

So how did I do?

Let's just say it was decent but not within my personal goal.

Here's what I bought....

  • Wild Harvest Organic Dried Beans, 2 Bags- sale, $1.99 each
  • Wild Harvest Organic Canned Tomatoes- sale, $1.59 each
  • 100% Whole Wheat "Natural" Bread- $1.78
  • 12 Refrigerated Flour Tortillas- $2.00 (I thought these were organic but they were just "fine foods.")
  • Cub Signature Thinly Sliced Chicken Breast- $3.29 per lb, $3.88 (Again, they had so many things placed together. I thought I had bought Wild Harvest only to find I had bought the wrong brand.)
  • Organic Bananas- sale @ $0.77 per lb, $3.67
  • Farm Stand (local) Washington Apples- $3.99
  • Morningstar Veggie Chicken- $3.99
  • Morningstar Veggie Steak- $3.99
  • Cub Skim Milk Twin Pack- $3.92
  • Pediasure, 6 Pk- $9.99
  • Kraft 2% Milk Shredded Cheddar Cheese- $2.98
  • 5 oz Alouette Creme de Brie Cheese, Original- $4.99

Subtotal: $50.75

Now the fun part, the savings...

  • -$0.75/2 Cub Morningstar Coupon
  • -$0.56 Cub Milk Twin Pack Coupon
  • -$2 for the $10/10 Products Kelloggs Rebate (Morningstar qualifies)
  • -$1 Pediasure Coupon
  • -$8.99 Pediasure Rebate
  • -$2.98 Kraft Cheese Rebate
  • -$4.99 Alouette Cheese Rebate

End Total (drum roll please): $29.48!

I messed up by not calculating the Morningstar stuff before I checked out so I ended up over my $25 goal. As long as I didn't go over $50 I'm still technically fine. I figure a savings of $21.27 isn't too bad. That's a little over 40%, which is nice.

So, what did we learn today?

Always double check when buying organic. Stores have wised up to the organic trend and are stocking "natural" items nearby as yet another way to cash in. If you don't watch it you might end up like me- overcharged for non organic items that strive to look organic. Also, it might not be a bad idea to take a pen with and mark down the prices as you add items to the cart. This way you can double check the calculator total at the end.

Well, live and learn, right?

Keep Your Kitchen Ant Free

Last year it was fruit flies. This year it's ants. They keep getting in and it's bugging me, no pun intended. They're not the tiny ones either, just the regular old black kind. They must really like what they're finding here cuz they're climbing up 3 stories and in near the sliding screen door in search of food (I think). They've finally reached the kitchen and dining room so I doubt they'll starve to death for me. Toddlers aren't known for eating neatly.

When I was growing up we would get ants in the summer. Mum always terro'd 'em to death. Now that I have a toddler and cat I don't really like that option. So, after searching online I came up with this recipe for a homemade ant killer:

1 Part Borax
1 Part Corn Syrup
2 Parts Water

Mix and set out small amounts (about 1 t-1 T) for the ants to eat and carry back to the rest.

Yesterday evening, after setting some bait outside, I looked onto my balcony and saw what must have been a good 20 of 'em- the most I've seen in one spot yet. Normally there are no more than 3. Now they're all gone out there. I can't say they all died but at least they're leaving me alone. Really, that's all I'm asking.

Monday, July 13, 2009

CVS - Huggies Pull Ups Deal

I ran out to CVS yesterday and picked up 3 packs of these. Right now they have them on sale for $8.99 per pack. Before you go print out a couple $3 coupons and activate the $1.50 Upromise Huggies ecoupon for your CVS card. Then when you get back save the receipts to submit to Caregivers Marketplace for an extra $0.75 back per pack. Ignoring the Upromise college savings, your end price will be about $5.24 per pack. Happy hunting!

A Good Way to Start

So, I was just finishing up an experiment in the kitchen when I realized I hadn't typed out my grocery shopping list yet. I hopped back on the comp and looked at the Monday post. Do you know what I found?

Every single ingredient and item in those recipes was already sitting in my freezer, fridge, or pantry. The exception was graham crackers for the Key Lime Parfait. But you know what? We can make those homemade too!

I don't know how to describe how liberating it is to look through your supplies and realize you finally have a decently stocked pantry. This means that if something bad ever were to really happen my family and I wouldn't have to worry about food, at least not for awhile.

This has inspired me to start up my very own post series. Of course in honor of the grocery challenge the first theme will focus on food. Who knows, maybe this will finally break my writer's block. I'm crossing my fingers.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Menu Planning Monday - Week 1

Monday: Seasoned Black Beans, Rice, Corn, Mexican Shredded Cheese, Salsa, Sour Cream & Homemade Tortilla Chips (1)

Tuesday: Cream of Celery Soup (2), Crockpot Yogurt, & Leftovers

Wednesday: Homemade Pepperoni Pizza

Thursday: Mac & Cheese

Friday: Tater Tot Casserole (3)

Saturday: Crockpot Peking Pork Chops (4) w/Couscous

Sunday: Veggieburgers w/French Fries

Edit- I forgot to add a few things.

Weekend Breakfast: Strawberry Rhubarb Oat Bars

Weekend Dessert: Key Lime Parfaits w/Homemade Graham Cracker Crumbs

Other: Jelly, TBD

The All You Grocery Challenge

If you haven't already, today is the last day to sign up for the All You Grocery Challenge. In a nutshell it's a month-long challenge where you try to spend no more than $25 per family member each week. The winner will get a $1,000 grocery card, a year's supply of Knorr side dishes, and I'll think they'll be on the today show (or something like that) too. I'm going to be participating.

What this means for SS is that for the next month you will likely be finding more food posts, maybe even a few written by yours truly. I'll still keep the craft posts going but until this is over I think I'll be doing them a bit less often. I'm going to go All You one better on their challenge and try to keep our budget to $25 total per week while mainly buying local or organic. To give you a run down, that's $25 for Am, me, and D, who's here on the weekends. Also, during the month of August I will officially be car-free, meaning my own personal vehicle will be staying parked at the end of the lot. The bike trailer is all hooked up and I'm ready to run with it.

So whatd'ya say, anyone else up for a challenge?

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Tasty Tuesday - No Bake Num Nums

Hope all of you had great 4th's. We ended up going to D's place, shooting fireworks, playing football, picking strawberries, and swimming in some literally ice cold water. All in all it was pretty fun. Thought I'd celebrate my return with some more no-bake desserts. ^^

1. Mexican Cannolis w/Homemade Ricotta
Lauren K. @ Mambo Sprouts

2. World's Greatest Homemade Slushies
The Mother Load

3. No Bake Cherry Cheesecake
Tammy's Recipes

4. Red Tapioca Pudding w/Vanilla Cream
The Perfect Pantry

5. Ice Cream Sandwiches
Flipflops & Applesauce

6. Multiple Homemade Popsicle Recipes
5 Orange Potatoes

7. Peanut Butter Pie
Jerky Curry @ Safely Gathered In

8. Cinnamon Ice Cream
Elizabeth @ Allrecipes

9. Buster Bar Dessert
The Finer Things in Life