Friday, July 31, 2009

Dunkin' Donuts. Dunkin' keeps me blogging. Try Dunkin' Donuts Coffee For Free. Get a Sample

Just requested my free sample! Go get yours now....

Will Pee For Pennies!

This is going to be a fairly long post as I catch up from the past week and all of the happenings, so grab a drink and settle down! I am using bullets to make it shorter, LOL, but still......

  • My Mom, MIL and Nephew left this morning. I miss them already! The week was way too short. We didn't really do much of anything except for hang out, but we had fun being with each other.
  • My nephew, Chance, is soooo good with the boys. I wish we lived closer, I would have him over any time. He plays with them and helps them pick up their toys and wears them out so that they sleep good at night! He is 13 and such a "big boy" that the boys respect him and look up to him. He is a great kid.
  • I missed Jenna lots. I am extremely glad to have her home again. So are the boys. She has lost a little weight and gotten a great tan at camp this summer. Wow! My little girl is growing up. She is going to be a Junior in HS this year and it makes me feel so old! She is having some concerns and questions regarding her future. Feel free to pop over to this post on her blog and this post on her writing blog and leave her some feedback!
  • I have been sick as a dog for the past 3 weeks. Congested, coughing, hacking, losing my voice and generally yucky. I went to the doctor this week and she said it is allergies. Really? I hardly ever have allergy issues. But, she told me to take Zyrtec every day and if I saw no change within a week to come back. My lungs were clear, no bronchitis, and since I had clear mucous (yuck!) she is pretty sure this is just the allergies. I feel somewhat better after only 3 days of taking the meds. We will see what happens.
  • Yesterday, I got a letter in the mail from the PACE Headstart program. Braeden was accepted! So, my bitching and complaining had some effect! We took him for his physical and several tests yesterday afternoon and we have orientation next Wednesday. He will start school on September 8th (I think) and I am so excited I could just cry. So, with that on the horizon, we have stepped up potty training. Which leads to my next bullet.....
  • Braeden pees for pennies. After all of that planning and trying and working using chocolates, toy cars and plastic dinos, he is totally rocking the potty for pennies. I am paying my son to use the bathroom. LMAO But, it seems to be working...... and now we have a real reason to push it. He needs to be trained well enough for school within the next month! Of course, I do not expect perfection. And I have a feeling that once he sees other kids using the potty we will not have problems, but,.... wish us luck!
  • I am overwhelmingly happy that my little guys and my big girl love each other so much. The boys love to go in their sister's room and play. She likes having them there for a while. Right now, they are having a dance and lego party! They are listening to techno dance music, dancing all over her room and also playing with legos. Fun! She can be so good with them. It really brings home how badly I will miss her help when she leaves for college in two years! Arrrrgggghhhh! Only 2 more years!!!!
  • My Frugal Faeire blog is up and running again. I am trying to post at least several times a week over there. Hopefully I can keep it up!
  • I have not written very much at all over this Summer. With Jenna gone and the boys making me crazy, I just have not had the time. It is now time to set up a writing schedule for myself. I really need to start writing regularly and often. We need the money, and I need to write more and get the practice!
  • My microwave blew up again. This is the third one. Roaches! Yuck. When we bought this one, we also purchased a replacement plan in case it happened again. So, I call the number on the form and after talking to 2 people and telling them everything, I am told that the oven is still under manufacturer's warranty so I have to call them. Waste of money for the replacement plan! So, I call the manufacturer and they tell me to cut off the cord, peel the label off of the back, make a copy of my receipt and ship this along with the glass base from inside the oven. When they get it, they will ship me a new microwave. I have to pay the shipping to them. ..... We went and bought a cheap microwave last night. I will still ship the old one's things back but I need my micro now, not 2 - 3 weeks from now!
  • Jenna's best friend, Cat, was fishsitting this Summer. So that I would not kill all of Jenna's fish like I did last year! LOL So, last night she brought the fish home and.... was driving her new car! Not new, it is used, but when she got out of the car there was much squealing and hugging and jumping up and down! The Jenna came out to see it. LOL Jenna starts driver's ed class this Fall and we will have to start thinking car in the spring sometime. Wow. It just does not seem possible! We told her that we will match whatever money she earns for a car, up to$1000. So, is she saves $500, we will give her $500. If she saves $1500 we will only give her $1000. So far, she has $350 saved. She may look into getting a job in the spring. I would like her to have a car for Senior year, but she may end up having to wait until second semester of Senior year. Depends on what we can find!
  • I am about to start seriously trying to lose weight. I feel bad physically and emotionally I am a mess. The weight loss should help to some extent. And I plan to start yoga as well. I will post updates as to my progress.
  • I am trying to quit smoking again. I have smoked at least a pack a day, sometimes more, for the past 19 1/2 years. It's past time to quit. Wish me strength and luck,
That's it for today! I will be back tomorrow!

Monday, July 27, 2009

My Heart Breaks

One of my very best friends called me today. Her brother, serving our country in the Marine Corps, was shot and killed in Afghanistan this weekend. Julia, I wish I could be there for you. I love you. Wayne, you will be missed.


I will be out of touch for most of this week. My daughter is home! Also, my mother, MIL and nephew are here visiting for the rest of the week. So, time out to spend some time with them..... back at the end of the week!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Contest, Free Book and a New Blog to Check Out!

The Writing Gourmet is the blog home of writer and foodie Cal Orey (Calorie... get it? lol). She has some really interesting posts and content about healthy foods and yummy stuff. You should check it out. While you are there, she is running a contest right now and looking for a fabulous chocolate cheescake recipe. If you have one, you may win two free books! In addition, when you visit the Writing Gourmet, become a follower and drop her a line at her email addy to request your free copy of either her book on vinegar or her book on olive oil.

Early Menu Plan – 7/23 to 8/1

My mother, MIL and nephew will be here tomorrow bringing my DD home. They will be here for a week visiting! Not only does this mean larger meals, but it also means vegetarian options. My MIL is a vegetarian but luckily is not too picky. So, here is my menu plan for the next week and a half so that I do not have to worry about it later!

Thursday - Meat Loaf, Au Gratin Potatoes, French Green Beans (hubby's fave!)

Friday - Taco Pie w/ Crescent Roll Crust (vegetarian)

Saturday - Couscous salad with baked pork chops or veggie meat option for MIL

Sunday - Country Fried Steak, Mashed Potatoes and Corn, Country Gravy with vegetarian meat substitute for MIL (by DD's request!)

Monday – Pizza (either homemade or at hubby's pizzeria)

Tuesday - Spinach and Mushroom Manicotti (vegetarian)

Wednesday - Thai Chicken Fettuccine with green beans (chicken cooked on the side)

Thursday - Parmesan Cheese Risotto with Mushrooms, Shrimp (Mom loves it!) and Pork Chops (hubby won't eat seafood!) and meat substitute for MIL

Friday – Leftovers

Saturday - Cowboy Beans with Corn Bread

So, that's it for now. Breakfasts will consist of waffles, pancakes, muffins, cereal, grits or oatmeal. All of these options are available. One morning I will be making french toast I know. Lunches will consist of leftovers, or whatever I think of at the time. There are plenty of options in the house!

If you are looking for other great menus to check out, head over to orgjunkie for Menu Planning Monday!


I sometimes wonder why I am still blogging. I tend to be bad about remembering to post, I lost my sense of humor about 2 years ago and my inspirational posts run more to "thank goodness the boys are asleep" more than anything. But, I do enjoy writing about my time as a SAHM. It won't be many more years and my littles will be grown and gone to school. Then I might need a reminder as to why I am using birth control. LOL

My middle child, Braeden, is about to turn 4. He should be starting preschool and learning social skills and getting ready for big boy school. However, since we are so darn poor, we cannot afford to pay for preschool. The Headstart program has turned us down because we make too muchj money. Yeah, right! Even though he has a disability, we are over income so he was denied. I called to appeal the decision and raise some hell. The director assured me that he was placed on the top of the list of children who are over income and that if a place opened up he would get in. I have a problem with this whole situation. It seems to me that a child with a disability whose parents receive food stamps and medicaid should be able to get into a subsidised preschool program. Maybe even have preference over a child who has no disability, whose family is poor but who has other children around and is able to get the social skills they need. My son has no idea how to interact with other children! Whatever. If he does not get in, I will try to homeschool him this year and plan to try to set up soem playdates with other kids if I can find any his age that are not in preschool!

I am just frustrated.

On another note, I am really interested in reading the book The Time Traveler's Wife. ANyone have a spar copy they want to send me? LOL I may end up at the library soon.

I am turning 35 this year. In about a month. Not looking forward to that. I think I may have to officially become an adult then!

That's it for today. I am trying to clean and cook today. My DD, Jenna, is coming home from Florida tommorow! Finally! She has been gone all summer and I miss her soooooo much. My Mom and MIL are coming to visit for the next week and my nephew as well. So, I need to get busy!


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Baking Update

As usual, chaos reigns in my home. I never get the things accomplished that I plan to! But, I have gotten some baking done. So far, I have made a double batch of waffles (dinner one night plus some for freezer), a double batch of sweet potato muffins, a double batch of pear muffins and a double batch of peanut butter, banana and chocolate chip muffins. Not all on my list but yummy just the same! Tomorrow is more waffles and muffins and lots of cleaning and laundry!

I actually took 2 dozen sweet potato muffins to a friend earlier. She had told me she was craving sweet potato desserts. She owns a store down the road from me and is a sweetheart. SO, I took the muffins in to her and she was so excited! And you know what? She gave me two giant 16 count packs of hamburger buns for free. So, I will freeze them and have them for some time to come. It is always nice to get unexpected freebies. It just makes the world a little brighter for me.

My DD (15 yo) is coming home finally. She has been away all summer and I sure do miss her! So, since my mom and my MIL are coming to visit when they bring her home, I will be trying to put my house in order before they get here. At least somewhat! LOL

My menu planning is getting there. I know what I am cooking, I went shopping, but I do not have it written down yet. May post that soon.

There are some great deals on school supplies right now, I may have to make a run to the store soon. The teen will need bunches of stuff this year and the boys could use some crayons and paper.

I have added a Swagbucks widget to my sidebar. Anyone who is interested in earning points and trading them in for cool gift cards and prizes, check out Swagbucks! If you enter by using my widget with me as a referral, I get bonus points! So, click and check it out! Please! LOL

More tomorrow!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Baking Week

I have made my list of items that I will be baking and freezing this week. As of right now it consists of:

So, as of right now, I still need to pick up a few things at the grocery store. Then, over the next week I plan on baking, frying, packaging and freezing enough snacks and breakfasts to get us through the next month or so.

In addition to all of this, I really need to make some pizzas to put in the freezer for the boys. They love cheese pizza for lunch but I hate buying it! If I get a chance, I can make up some small homemade pizzas and freeze them as well.

I am so glad we have a giant freezer!

I am still in process on my month's menu planning. My money is just not stretching to cover everything I need for what I want to cook. So, I need to make some changes and go shopping still. I will post the basics of the menu once I have it finished! Although, in advance I can say that I found a great deal on boneless pork loin. I got one big enough that I have it portioned out for 6 full meals and it cost me only $15 for the whole piece of meat. I like that. That means the meat portion of 6 different meals works out to be only $2.50! It's nice when I can make it work liek that for something I love like good thick pork chops!

Until next time.....

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Potty Time!

Potty training trials and tribulations continue! Braeden (almost 4) knows how to use the potty, is capable of holding it until he gets there, knows when he needs to go and is big enough to get on the toilet or the potty chair without help. He chooses not to cooperate. He will poop or pee in his underwear or pullups or on the floor and make no effort to get to the toilet or potty. Why? WHY??????

We recently decided bribery is the way to go. He has a basket full of cheap matchbox cars and plastic dinosaurs for each time he goes peepee in the potty. And he has a special dino toy for the first time he poops in the potty and a giant dino for when he goes a whole week without accidents. So far today, we have been working this for about 2 hours. He has peed in the potty twice and gotten a car each time. And had a melt down the first time because he wanted all of the toys! Keep your fingers crossed that this works. After a few days of him peeing each time in the potty I will switch it up and only give him a toy every 3rd time.

Malachai (2) wants to use the potty. He loves it. But, he still does not have it down very good. He starts to pee and does not got o the potty. So, we are taking it slow with him. I think once he sees his brother doing it it will all come together for him as well.

I hope to hell I am diaper free before October. That is my goal. Although I have a feeling nights will still need a diaper or pullup for a while to come. They both sleep really hard once they go down.

Any suggestions to help with this time of terror???

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Convenience Foods Bite Me on The Butt

I'm back and it is time to get back on the frugal bandwagon! I have not been clipping coupons or shopping frugal at all recently. My menu planning has gone away and I really see the difference in our money! So, I decided it is time to get back to work.

One of the major problems I have noticed over the past few months is that I have been spending money on fast food and convenience foods because I have nothing in the house that is fast and easy to make for me and the kids for breakfasts, lunches and snacks. Nothing to eat? Swing down to the convenience store and pick up a few tubes of chocolate donuts. Not only is this bad for the kids (and me!) but the money really adds up in the long run.

So, I have decided to spend some time over the next week or so making up some breakfast and snack foods to freeze and have available. I plan to make pancakes, waffles, muffins, banana bread, cookies and maybe some other items. Flash freeze and package them and they are good to go for snacks or breakfasts.

I am presently searching for some good recipes for muffins and some different versions of pancakes. I also need to do some research on how to use wheat germ, flax seed and other nutritional supplements to make these items a little healthier for the kids.

My shopping day will be Friday or Saturday so I need to get my plans in place, make up my menu plans for dinners, make my shopping list and get ready to rumble!!


I have had an extremely hard summer so far. It has been challenging and frustrating and depressing. The past week has shown me that I am not alone and there have been several blog posts that have touched my heart. Also, I have a video to share with you that makes me cry.

Read this post by the Queen of Shake Shake. I printed it out and it is on my refrigerator. For those days that I feel like I am alone and breaking down and I wonder why....

Now, listen to this song. Claudia posted this on Facebook and I am in love with it. The lyrics are below the video.


i am exactly where i need to be
i need to be exactly where i am
i am a blessing manifest
i can undress the moment
naked time unwinds beneath my mind
and from within i find the kind of beauty
only i can find
i am exactly where i need to be
i need to be exactly where i am
i am surrendering so willingly
to be the perfect me inside this now
and truly how else could it be
destiny she blesses me
destiny she blesses me
when i try to fight or run
i only wind up back at square one
when i think i know what’s best for me
fate she takes me back
to exactly where i need to be
i am exactly where i need to be
i need to be exactly where i am
i am divinely timed and shining brightly
yes i believe that there’s a purpose just for me
yes i believe that we are light
and we shine infinitely
i am exactly where i need to be
i need to be exactly where i am
i am not aimlessly existing see
i am in perfect harmony with universal energy
and i am truly free when i accept my own divinity
look at me look at me closely
tell me exactly what you see
if you are paying attention you will now begin ascension of the mind
why, because if you look at me just right you will see a kiss
for it took a kiss to make this breath exist
the intersection of my mother’s and father’s lips
to touch twist and perfect what came next to produce me
look at me and you will see the breeze
the breeze it took to shake the leaves to make
my mother’s hair move, my father dare touch it and say
please may i have a kiss
yes the breeze made me exist
and if you want to get even deeper into this
when you look at me you will see a cloud
the cloud it took to form the storm to make the breeze shake the leaves to
inspire the liplock – yes a raindrop will pop up out these words
you heard me right
if you look at me close enough you will see a dark stormy night
and what is night
well night ain’t night without it’s polar opposite of sunlight
so if you watch the way my hands sway
you’ll see the light of day
and everyday is a testament to the sediment of the earth’s core
it’s ever spinning enormous force so if you look at me just right
you will see a spark of the source
but the most fascinating thing about this, and it’s true
is that if you look at me just right, you see you
it’s only what you perceive how you believe the space between
you and me
that creates reality
so when i sing you can feel it
when i cry you can heal it
when i speak words you can be the words i speak by singing with me
peace love free, peace love free
peace love free, peace love free
peace love free, peace love free
peace love free, peace love free
when i try to fight or run
i only wind up back at square one
when i think i know what’s best for me
fate she takes me back
to exactly where i need to be
and when i am alone and full of fear
i just remember the rising sun always appears
everyday miracles, miracles that i see
well they take me back
they take me back
they take me back
to exactly where i need to be

by Amy Steinberg

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Beatings Begin Now

I will flog myself for being a bad blogger so that you do not have to. My only excuses are:

1. When we got back from our vacation to Florida, the van broke down. It had two broken motor mounts and needed a tune up. It is still not running 100%. I am going to have to take it back to the mechanics and see what else is wrong with it. Plus, I think it is hilarious that my almost 4 year old knows my mechanic by name. When Bob the mechanic came to pick us up when the van was fixed, Braeden said "Hi Bob! Thank you for the vroom vroom, Bob!" Think we see too much of Bob?

2. My AC unit broke down. Not just broke down. It exploded. My landlord decided it was too expensive to fix right now. So, he bought window units for the house. It is cool but not cold in the house. It makes me nervous. I have yet to get my new electric bill to see how bad the damage will be.

3. Potty training a very stubborn and irritating almost 4 year old who is completely CAPABLE of using the toilet every time but chooses not to. Instead, he does things like: pee on his brothers head, pee on the floor in front of the computer, pee in a cup, pee on the couch and then put a towel down over it, pee wherever he happens to be standing without moving a muscle.

4. Potty training a two year old who wants to be exactly like his big brother.

5. I miss Jenna so much! She has been in Florida since June started and I am lost without her here to help me. And also without her to talk to. Is it sad that my 15 year old daughter is one of my best friends?

6. Trying to write for a new site and being unable to work time in to do so when the boys have decided that sleep is overrated.

So, I have been a little overwhelmed.

I will try to do better.

Maybe I can find my camera one of these days and get the vacation pics from it and actually show y'all the fun we had at Disney!