October 27, 2007
Saturday Savings!
First, B*st Buy wanted to charge us $100 to back up the hard drive -- and before I even got frustrated, the Lord showed me that I just needed to ask for my hard drive back. So I did, and I have it in my possession and can ask someone at work to get the files off that I need. I can not put it in my laptop or it will void the warranty that I just paid for! ugh!

It was a good day for savings, the Lord blessed! Even more than I thought. I even asked the cashier if she was sure that was correct! Silly! Here's a photo of my purchases, not very much when you look at it, but check out the breakdown of cost and savings. (click breakdown)

Total OOP $1.63. Plus $21 Extra Care Bucks back. If you will notice on the Triple A batteries -- there is a $1.00 instant savings coupon right on the package that I did not see until I made it home! {sigh} I did a previous deal for the 3 Tylenol earlier in the week (thanks to Melinda!) and OOP was $2.11 and $10 ECBs. Not to shabby. I had to get some Pumpkin Peeps for the squirt.

Here is a photo I took of Mini last night, she sleeps at the top of the chair and she was out cold! She has such a hard life ... {eyeroll} Keeping busy so I don't have a lot of time to think! Stopped at a bread outlet and they had Sara Lee Bagels for 75 cents a bag! And Whole Grain White bread for 60 cents. I really like their Baked Apple and Honey Wheat bagels -- yum! Plus they freeze well. Have a blessed evening!

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October 26, 2007
God is so awesome sometimes -- (well He is all the time, I just neglect to see it sometimes!) My hub went to B*st Buy yesterday to exchange the laptop and they told him that, they were sorry but we were out of luck on the hard drive from the old one. (sigh) At first I was angry, and then I was a little overwhelmed as there were photos I had not backed up on there, tax return records (we do our own) and things like that.

This morning when I was praying, I prayed a simple prayer. "Lord can you please have them find that hard drive?" With everything else going on, this felt like another ton sitting on my chest.

Talked to hub at lunch today and he said " B*st Buy called, said they found it, bring whatever you have to transfer the information!" Imagine that? How awesome is that? Thank you Lord!

Side note: Please pray for one of our international officers, his mom is very ill, and he is here and she is thousands of miles away. He does not have the funds to make the trip home, he is hurting and she is suffering greatly. Please pray that God has His way and takes care of that family. My heart hurts for him.

Pray for my children -- that they obey the voice of God. They are truly in a battle -- its a spiritual battle, but my faith and my trust are in Jesus Christ. The creator and giver of life. I am believing Him for great things!


Figured I would put some faces with names when you pray!

Thanks so very much!!!

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October 25, 2007
Thankful Thursday - the grace of God
But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God. Acts 20:24

Today, I am thankful for the Lord Jesus Christ, His ultimate sacrifice for us, His grace, His mercy and overall goodness. Not one of us are desiring of this -- only Him. I am so thankful for what He is doing, and what He is going to do yet.

I am thankful there was no arguing with getting the latest laptop exchanged. They checked the other one and just gave my husband a new one. So, far so good! It should really be called Michelle's Law! (instead of Murphy's Law!)
I am thankful for the solid rock we stand on -- while the wind and the rain storms wildly around us, we are safe as long as we stand on the rock.

I am thankful for Money Saving Mom -- this has been a blessing to our family. One of my deals this week was two 125 count, and one 100 count Extra Strength Tylenol and 1 package of Pumpkin Peeps for Squirt for OOP $2.11. Not too shabby, plus $10 ECB. I plan on making another trip. I have to reinstall a printer! Ugh!

I am thankful for our Pastor, I know our souls are one of his top priorities and he does it out of love and necessity.

I am thankful for my husband, he doesn't stress -- just trusts in the Lord. I think my faith has been failing me a little lately, but I do trust in Him. That allows me to take another step, draw another breath when I feel I can't do it anymore.

And as always, I am thankful for this community of bloggers who are an encouragement to me. Thanks Iris for hosting, its nice to have you back!
Please visit Crystal at God is in Control…NOT ME! who is hosting this week. Iris at Sting my heart is taking a little break, and she is missed.
Visit Crystal for more Thankful Thursday praises!


October 24, 2007
Wonderful Wednesday!
Just a few things to share today ... do you remember the brand spanking new laptop I just picked up on Saturday (as in 4 days ago?) -- well its dead. Yup, dead. Won't charge, won't do zip. {insert huge sigh} so off I go back to B*st Buy. I would really just like a NEW one, not to send this one off to be repaired as I have obviously obtained another lemon! Ugh!!

I found this really neat Cooking Light Blog -- I can do food, but I LOVE desserts and she has some wonderful recipes and photos! Lemon Pound Cake, yum! Lots of goodies.

If you know me personally you know I have a sweet tooth, well quite a few and I LOVE candy.

I'm not a big chocolate fan -- I just get moods for that, but my two very favorite candies are 1. Jelly Beans. Sour Jelly Bellys are the best! Yum! and 2. Jujubes! Love these things, but I don't buy them often because I will ear the entire box!
What is your favorite candy? Share with us!
O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. Psalms 34:8 KJV
Thanks for your prayers -- they have made all the difference, I can see the hand of the Lord at work!!


October 22, 2007
Monday Madness!
We woke to the sound of rain during the night and a chill in the air. I miss my morning walk when its raining -- but Mini, Little Cat and I just hung out in the mudroom to talk to the Lord.

My brother has moved into his own place -- so our house feels empty. But in a week or so it will be the norm. One thing I do plan on doing is getting back on the right eating plan -- he always brought home fattening foods! A lot of things well by the wayside after my brother's unexpected arrival, but I plan on getting back on track. Starting today!!

First here's my menu plan --
Baking: (I love colder weather to bake in!)


  • Josh isn't feeling well today, so please pray for him.
  • My co-workers daughter, Kaitlyn was in a small bike accident in August, which lacerated her pancreas -- she is in the hospital once again because it is not draining, and she developed a staph infection. (MRS*A) Please pray for God to heal this young girl and open their hearts to the Lord.
  • Pray for our family -- for wisdom in dealing with teenagers and hub's job situation.

Thanks -- you are appreciated more than you know!!

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October 21, 2007
Never changing ...
I'm so thankful that the Lord never changes -- He is the same yesterday, today and forever.

Unfortunately, Best B*y is close to being the same! Ugh. What a very frustrating store. Uh, guys its not MY fault S*ny made a lemon notebook!

I DID get a new laptop -- (and its really cool) -- but I DID have to buy a new warranty. Totally bummed about that in our journey to extinguish debt -- but I was afraid NOT to have one. So, I have 6 months to pay it off, without interest. We have used Best Buy 0% interest quite a lot in the last ten years, they have shortened the paying off periods now, but they still have not received a dime in interest from this household. We have always managed to pay it off in the time period allotted, by the grace of God.

My hubby was able to fix my brakes for a whopping $33.45! I am ever so thankful for him and his many talents.

We traded my Sony for a Toshiba Satellite X205-S7483 -- it was the closest in price. It has way much more than I would ever use, but Josh thinks its great. It even has a fingerprint log in and log in for certain programs only if finger print enabled. There is a little scanner so that you can run your finger over so it can recognize the print. I thought that was cool. LOL

Thanks for your prayers, I covet them. They are going to try and get my hard drive back to transfer my files, please pray that they are able to!

I ended up going to bed at 3am last night, or rather this morning. Just took a short nap and we are headed to evening service, there is to be a missionary from France there tonight.


October 20, 2007
I have been wondering ...
... quite a lot of things, some of them un-blog worthy this past week. A week filled with work, chores and running it seems. Thankful that today is Saturday!

We live in an older farmhouse -- which we purchased to remodel and gain some profit from. Although with the house market today -- that isn't happening, but that's okay too, we are far from done.

The sheet rock in the stair case was in need of repair and the ceiling fell over last winter. A huge mess, don't ask! This summer my brother tore the rest down and yesterday my husband started the tedious task of putting up new sheet rock. Its a small, narrow, dark staircase and doesn't look like its much fun! I wonder how much heat would escape the house if we didn't seal it all back in nice and tight?

He has also been filing some cracks in Sarai's old room so that Josh could move in. We plan on totally gutting that room in the spring and installing new sheet rock and hopefully windows. Josh chose a color -- a pretty dark color but we figured it will be ripped out anyway. I wonder how many coats of primer it would take to cover it? I'll share some before and after shots soon.

My laptop ended up back in Best Buy the end of September for the third time for the SAME problem. Their lemon rule is 4 times. My warranty expires in Feb 08. I prayed about it and asked the Lord if this is going to happen again, please let them consider giving me a replacement. Well they called and told my hub to bring in my paperwork and pick out a new one! Praise the Lord!! That is the plan for this afternoon -- pray they don't get 'dumb'. Sometimes their service people are difficult to deal with and that they can transfer all my information.

Stephen is marching in the Maple Leaf Festival Parade -- wish I could go, but not this year. It will be the first year I have missed. Its a beautiful day here in Kansas!

My front brakes need replaced BAD -- I wonder how much that is going to cost? Please pray its not one of those $600 repair jobs! Ugh!

Ya know, I heard someone say something the other night -- I wonder if they think I am really that dumb? That is one of the reasons I have hesitated to blog -- but you know I really think those two similar scriptures are true in this situation ---
Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye. Mat 7:5

Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to pull out the mote that is in thy brother's eye. Luk 6:42
We need to clean and remodel our own houses before we judge or remodel someone elses -- and remember what we expected in the same situation, but they can't do that? Ah, peeps!
Pray for me today -- I hate being used and thought that I am dumb not to see through their words. Not a very good blog ending, but now you see why I haven't blogged! LOL! God is so much bigger than me, and I am thankful for Him.


October 12, 2007
Frugal Fridays / CVS Savings

If you have not visited Biblical Womanhood and their Frugal Friday links – you are definitely missing out! Lots of great ideas.

It was actually through this blog and her business which prompted me to begin using coupons again, when she shared a wealth of information about great deals at CVS, Walgreen's and Dillon's (Kroger). She has a $35 a week grocery budget which feeds her family of 4, to include diapers and paper products, health and personal hygiene items. This website has truly been a blessing to our budget!

One of my tips for today is to purchase Crystal’s e-book Secrets to Supermarket Savings. About a month ago she had a special for about five e-books (which included this one) and I have read every one. They have been a huge help to me.

My second tip is to RUN to her other website “Money Savings Moms where she shares the latest CVS deals, Walgreen's deals and Kroger savings and a host of other things.
Third is to share my CVS Savings experience--

I wasn’t exactly sure how CVS and the Extra Care Bucks worked until I read her CVS 101 post. Crystal then actually gave a Beginner Deals for CVS post that gave detailed instructions on what to buy, where to get coupons and even the order you should give the Extra Care Card and coupons to the cashier. There is a small investment before you start getting items for basically free.

For my first CVS Deal this is what I bought:
5 Ultimate Strength Mylanta – on sale for $4.50 each. I had 5 $3 off coupons, plus I had a CVS Coupon for $4 off of $20

Mylanta $22.50
Coupons -$15.00
CVS Cpn -$ 4.00
Total OOP $3.50 (OOP = out of pocket)

But I received $10 in Extra Care Bucks (ECB) back. (This was $10 in ECBs for buying $20 of certain products) (So actually I’m really ahead about $6.50 (not including tax!)

For my Second Deal (Week of Oct 7-13)

(These were the deals I took advantage of and still valid through tomorrow, if you click on the link prior Crystal shares links for the coupons and everything you need to get started!)

Palmolive Dish Detergent Buy 1 at $1.49 and get $1 in ECBs (I had a 40 cents off coupon)
Playtex tampons Buy 1 at $4.99, get $3 ECBs – (I had a $2.50 off coupon)
Colgate Total Advanced Clean 4.2 oz. or Max Fresh Burst 4 oz. (I had 2 $1 off/ 1 .75 off cpns) Buy 1 at $2.99, get $2 ECBs
My purchases:
Palmolive $1.49
Coupons -$.40
1 Playtex 4.99
Coupon -2.50
3 Colgate 8.97
Coupon -2.75
Bleach 1.50 (which I needed)

Credit $10.00 ECBs
OOP 1.81 (So I basically paid for my bleach and tax!)

ECBs Earned: $10.00 (so I am back where I started last week!!)
My daughter uses the Playtex and would need the Palmolive. Although she has a dishwasher! (wish I did!)

So for my initial investment of $3.50, I have: 3 tubes of Colgate Max Burst toothpaste 1 Box Playtex; 1 Bottle Palmolive, 5 bottles Mylanta and a bottle of Bleach. I should have bought more bottles of Palmolive but I had only the one coupon at the time, but there is a printable (which CVS accepts) and you can get 5 deals, so I may go back tomorrow and get 4 more since we have 2 computers to print from and you can print 2 coupons from each computer)

Here are a few other noteworthy posts from this past week:

BigLots 20% off coupon Entire Purchase (Expires 13 Oct)

Pinecone Research: $5 for every survey you take (I have been doing these surveys for about 2 years – they pay timely and our family has even been able to try products before market release!)

Vocalpoint (I am part of this as well and received my coupons yesterday!)
There are a host of other great posts and a wealth of information. If you have questions, please email me and I will try and help.


Homemade Cookie and Brownie Mix -- Think Christmas!!
Another frugal tip is to make your own homemade cookie and brownie mixes, not only is it less expensive, you will not consume all those preservatives in packaged mixes.

Don't forget to visit Michelle -- she has some awesome cookie recipe mixes (just in time for Christmas!) and this week is a Brownie Mix recipe. Yum!! There is a Marbled Cream Cheese and a Peanut Butter Brownie recipe you can make out of the mix.

Here is her cookie mix recipe post and here is a post on a variation of cookies from that mix!
There are recipes for oatmeal raisin, Lemon Yogurt Drops, Peanut Butter and Jelly, Peanut Molasses, orange-Coconut, Granola-Raisin and Chocolate Drops.

This would the ultimate time saver for Holiday gift giving! You can get white bakery type boxes at WalMart and Michael's (think 40% off coupon) or clear cellophane bags and add a cute bow and tag and you are set!

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October 11, 2007
Thankful Thursday - Peace

Thou wilt keep [him] in perfect peace, [whose] mind [is] stayed [on thee]: because he trusteth in thee. Isa 26:3 KJV
I debated posting today -- I am unsure why? Its not that I am not thankful, because that could be the farthest thing from the truth. I think I am struggling with the thankfulness of others?
In any case, I am thankful for the Lord Jesus Christ, His ultimate sacrifice for my life and the lives of my family ... and so many others. I never want to take Him for granted.
When I was praying this morning, I realized that the Lord had given me a peace with my daughter being on her own. (The Lord has been bringing this to pass over the last few weeks -- Bible studies on trust and faith) I will admit to continuing to pray for her safety -- sometimes I think she takes it for granted. But I am at peace with it. She is so excited, its hard not to feel some of the joy and happiness about her feeling she is accomplishing so much. Do I think she made the right decision, uh not a chance. But we raised her and trained her in the way she should go and I am leaving her in the Lord's hand. She is on her Solo Flight -- sort of like our guineas! In the Lords hand -- that is the best place to be and where I am leaving her.
I am thankful for my sons -- Stephen who at 15 told me to pick something and he would color it for me -- I love to color -- and love homemade gifts -- and coloring gifts count!! They really do!

....and Josh who brings his lunch up to my office and eats here. He's 17 -- that can't be cool, can it? But in both cases, I am thankful for the measure of joy it brings me.

I'm thankful for coffee in the mornings when I drag myself out of bed at 0430 am! Ugh! The new Folgers Black Silk is very yummy! (Thankful too that my brother brought it for us!!)

I'm thankful for my husband -- for many things, but for helping me with chores lately. I get tired of doing the same things day in and day out!

I am thankful for our health, our Pastor and his wife; the word of God that speaks to my heart and soul and causes me to change my thinking; family and friends who will pray for me; being able to meet all our bills, and actually have a little indulgence once in a while.

And as always, I am thankful for this community of bloggers who are an encouragement to me. Thanks Iris for hosting, its nice to have you back!
Please visit Sting my heart for more Thankful Thursday praises!


October 10, 2007
Waiting on Wednesday...
For the Sears repair man that is! We purchased a "new" stove when our son was working for Sears, and they were closing their store in town. The only stoves we have had were old ones that came with the houses we lived in, or were garage sale finds -- and the one in this house was one we purchased for $15 at a yard sale. It worked fine. Hub and I had been wanting a flat top but the prices were just not reasonable. So, the Lord blessed us with this one at less than half the cost of a brand new one and we were able to use the 10% off employee discount. This stove was the LAST one in the store! It slow cooks, has a warming drawer, it is self cleaning and one side of the top rack lifts off for turkeys and huge baking projects. I took the photo kind of slanted! It has worked great for the last year and in the last month we found that the front burner on the left died! We did not buy an extended warranty and we had thought the one year warranty was over, but Josh reminded us that we bought it in October, so we called them in the nick of time! How like the Lord, really to take care of the little things.
So they are coming ... some time between 8 am and 5pm.

I thought I would be productive, so I am posting my list so I can be more accountable. Plus the more I do today, leaves me less for the weekend. My resident duster has moved out, so the job now falls to me. Two jobs I despise are dusting and cleaning the bathroom. Not sure why, but they are not my favorites.

Side Note: The guineas are locked back in their coop. After asking the experts they said to lock them back in for 2 more weeks. Basically they said that guineas are stupid and need to be trained. I personally don't think they are that dumb, just hard headed like some humans I know.

My Very Long List ....
  1. Steam Clean Carpets (Living Room/Hall) 3pm update -- Done!
  2. Touch Up Paint - Bathroom
  3. Touch Up Paint - Kitchen
  4. Wash Kitchen Floor 3pm update -- Done
  5. Figure Budget for Son 3pm update -- Done
  6. Figure Our Budget for this week - DONE
  7. Clean off kitchen counters -- DONE
  8. Laundry -- One Load Left 3pm update -- Done
  9. Clean off shelf in Mudroom (pending # 12 for baskets!) Not happening today, no #12
  10. Trash out for tomorrow's bi-weekly pick up -- Noon Update - Done!
  11. Clean out both refrigerators -- (stuff for trash not deep clean) Noon Update - Done!
  12. Dollar General Run -- if Sears comes before school out -- Sears came at 245!
  13. Coupons / Sales for the week. Visit Money Saving Mom for help. She is in Kansas too.
  14. Wash Car - DONE
  15. Vac Car Noon Update - Done!
  16. Spot Clean car with Steam Cleaner or Folex ( works great) Noon Update - Done!
  17. Bake Cookies -- Noon Update - Done!
  18. Shower 3pm update -- Done
  19. Dinner Noon Update - Chicken Marinating and rice cooked for fried rice
  20. De clutter something! 3pm update -- Done Boxes in kitchen.
  21. Noon Update - Done! -- clean windows on outside doors
  22. Noon Update - Done! -- clean spice bottles
  23. Noon Update - Done! Swept porch and outside!

Noon Update - can you tell I am putting off the carpets!? UGH!! Off to start them ...

I can probably quadruple this list for things that we need to accomplish -- but I am overwhelmed as it is!

3pm update -- well I didn't get the touch up paint jobs done -- its about 3:22 pm and we have Bible Study tonight. So dinner is in the oven, we usually have something quick but since I was here lazing today I am making chicken! I am boiling some hard boiled eggs for lunches for my husband and mixing up some tuna -- (but need to get bread on the way home from church tonight!) I did quite a few other little jobs and I am wore out. Melinda even motivated me to get on the treadmill. And the Sears guy made it and the stove is working again.


October 8, 2007
Guineas, the Spirit of Christmas Award and trying to find!?
Our guineas did not venture from their home all day Sunday. I usually pray and walk down the road in the mornings, but it was raining pretty hard so I ventured to the barn. I was kind of surprised to see about 10 very wet guineas sitting outside on the board. How silly. They did venture a little further today and were on the ground in the goat pen scrounging around for bugs and making a racket !!

We moved our oldest into her first apartment today ... it was bitter sweet. It was hard not to be excited for her! We are now on the lookout for more furniture for the place.

I was blessed with an award from one of my favorite bloggers! I wonder if she knows I was born on Christmas Day! How sweet! It was for the Spirit of Christmas Award!

What is the Spirit of Christmas you ask? Quite simply it is those that have a generous and giving nature. Those who care about others. Those who have a kind word to say or a broad shoulder to lean on in the times that others need that. Those who display the "Spirit of Christmas".

I will of course have to give it right back to Michelle, I don't think this side of heaven she will ever know how much she has encouraged my weary soul lately.

Melinda at Saved by Grace ; Iris at Sting my Heart, and Debbie from Shortybears Place. They always have a kind word to bless my soul, even in the midst of their own trials. Please visit here to get the proper code and pass on this award to others.

I was at the thrift store on Saturday and saw the coolest box -- it had a Snowman with a hanging sign that had Peace, Love and Joy. I made these out of papers about 5 years ago -- I saw the idea and copied it, I even had the star, tree and heart punched with my scrapbook punches, never knowing that there were figurines and throws with this image. I made quite a few and need to find them so I can scan one in to show you all!
Well, I would love a figurine of a snowman holding the signs -- kind of like this photo:

I am pretty experienced finding things on the Internet, but this one eludes even me!
I found the throws, and t-shirts, but I would love a figurine! Anyone know of a source? All my Google hits ended up with product not available. {sigh}
Does anyone still have the Snowman Punch with the stick figure arms? I didn't have the punch back then but would love to make some more of them.

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October 6, 2007
Quinea Steps ...
They never did make it outside their coop last night, although about 9pm they were all hanging on the opening roosting.

This morning, a lone white guinea was on the board my husband put up. But, when I went to feed the goats, about half of them were outside on that board!

A little closer so you can see how ugly, oh I mean how cute they are! (Not!) And you can see that they were all watching me. They did fine until I came around the corner from inside the barn with a huge pile of hay for Billy and Sam. I guess I stirred them all up and they were squawking and carrying on, they ended up on the roof and the hot wire!! Then feathers were flying! Quite a few ended up in the goat pen and when I went in there they just stood there looking at me. Now they are all, once again inside the coop. How funny! Not quite sure about this whole world business!

October 5, 2007
Our Guineas have finally been set free ...
... after months of being contained in one form or
another. There is a lesson in this -- the Lord showed me this morning as I anxiously waited for them to leave their coop.

It is now 2:06 pm and they still have NOT left it!
Remember these tiny babies -- and of course the cats eating the first ones for lunch! Ugh!
Well there are now 21 -- not so tiny babies any more.

Here they are in their coop -- my husband took the chicken wire off the hole leading to the outside about 730 this morning. (FYI: they are much cuter when they are Keats!)
Here is one brave soul -- she is on the ledge to the opening! (that chain link is on a goat pen right outside the coop area) but they can fly.

When I went to visit, a few more were brave and were by the opening -- they weren't trusting the outside world just yet and ended up back on the ground.

About 11:00 I peeked out the kitchen door and saw them hanging out the opening so I put my distance lens on my camera so I could watch and I was hoping to get some photos of their flight to freedom -- but it was to no avail. They all went back in and there has not been a guinea in sight!
You can see a bit of white in the middle of the photo above and that is Billy. Original, huh? {eye roll} Stephen named him.

Billy and Sam currently live in that pen. Soon Billy will be visiting some lovely lady goats and enjoying his young goat hood and in the early spring we will be having some kids. We already have 3 sold! Sam basically keeps Billy company right now -- we felt bad he had to be all alone. Sam does not get to enjoy any goat hood -- he is one of our pets along with Cowboy, the rest are to make some money from! Cowboy is hanging out with 3 of the ladies right now in the field behind our house.

This cutie is Billy ... he is very sweet. I hope he doesn't get mean and unfriendly. And this is Josh and my goat ... Sam
This is a very interesting site about raising guineas so that they do not leave their home and has some great photos of guineas. We are hoping we did everything correctly and once free they will go back into their coop at night to sleep and nest. We have so many bugs out here, so they should start eating them instead of feed! 21 guineas eat A LOT of feed!

Stayed tuned for a little Bible Lesson about the Care and Raising of Guineas/Kids!

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October 1, 2007
My Pasta Salad Recipe ...
... is low in fat and frugal and tastes good and it was put up on The Adli Queen website! How cool is that? It's funny how the Lord uses little things to brighten your day. This was a little sunshine peaking from behind the clouds!