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Thursday, December 20, 2012

Merry Christmas

I figured since the world was going to end tomorrow, I better get my post up.  Christmas has been pretty stress-free this year.  All my shopping is done, presents are wrapped and under the tree.  The pumpkins are off the front porch.  I have baked most of the cookies (still have to do oatmeal raisin cookies for the hubby).  Tomorrow is the last day of work until Jan. 2. There is nothing left to do but enjoy my home, the Christmas tree, some family time and some relaxing.

I hope you take time to spend with your loved ones and reflect on the true meaning of Christmas.  That this is the time of year we celebrate our Savior's birth.  For without Him we are nothing.  Sometimes I find it hard to wrap my brain around such love.  But I am so thankful that He did love us more than I can imagine.

My favorite Christmas Story:

Luke 2: 7-21

And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.
17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.
18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.
19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.
20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.
21 And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called Jesus, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

Merry Christmas,

Saturday, December 15, 2012


I had a post all ready to go, but after yesterday's tragedy anything I could post seemed so trivial.  My heart is broken for all those families who have lost their precious family members in the terrible events that happened in Connecticut.

Please pray for those families.

 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. Matthew 5:4

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Christmas Happenings

Christmas is a very special time to me and it seems that a lot of years I have gotten so caught up in prepping for the day, I forget what the day is all about.  This year I have done much better at getting prepared early and being able to let some things go.  I mean, my tree is up and the inside of my house is mostly decorated, but there are still pumpkins on the front porch, my fall display is still up and the outside lights are not up, and believe or not, I'm okay with that.  Most of the shopping for the family is done, I just have a few more little gifts to buy. 

I haven't even started baking, but April and I have our big baking day planned for the 15th.  Hopefully this year my oven won't go out in the middle of it.  I might get a few things made this weekend as it is April's & Greg's day for shopping together and spending some daddy, daughter time together.

But that really isn't what Christmas is about anyway.  It's about a blessed baby being born for the purpose of saving the lost through his death, burial and resurrection.   How could there ever be a more perfect love or more beautiful story.  I am thankful that Jesus loved me enough.

My plan for the 3 new recipes a month had fallen by the wayside for the last couple of weeks so I am ready to get back to that but haven't found a recipe to try this week. I might not make it for December but I do have a new cookie recipe I want to try.  You can find that recipe here Shortbread Pecan Fingers.

Here is my menu plan for this week:
Friday will be out
Saturday is up in the air. I don't know if Greg will be home for dinner so I really am not planning anything.
Sunday: Chicken & Dumplings
Monday: Pot Roast in the slow cooker (it's my treatment day)
Tuesday: Pork chops, boiled potatoes, green beans
Wednesday: Bacon, eggs, grits, toast
Thursday: Tacos, re-fried beans, fries
Friday: Out
Saturday: Loaded baked potato soup, ham sandwiches
Sunday: Meat loaf, mashed potatoes, corn, peas

Have a great week,

And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.  And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.  Luke 2: 9-11


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Saving Money During the Christmas Season

I know we all have a lot of extra expenses during the Christmas Season and sometimes there just isn't anyway around paying full price for an item.  But I am here to tell you that you can still save money on those purchases that you must make.  My Black Friday shopping included coupons and stocking up items.  I had 2 coupons for $5.00 off $10.00 at Hallmark stores, so I went in to check out the Black Friday sales and they were offering a Christmas cookie jar for $5.00 with any purchase.  I bought a couple of stocking stuffers for the grand girls and a couple of decorations for my home plus 2 cookie jars (the cookie jars will be used as gifts, well at least one of them, they are stinking cute) and only spent $26.00 out of my pocket.  Toys R Us had coupons before Thanksgiving for a couple of BOGO items so I got 2 large Littlest Pet Shop play sets for the price of 1.  Bath and Body works accepts any and all coupons in one transaction on Black Friday so I was able to save more than I spent there and get several gifts as well as a few items for my home.  Amazon has been doing lightening deals every day and I have gotten a few gifts at prices much less than I had planned to spend.  I had coupons to spend at Kohl's and a couple of other stores.  I had well over $100 in coupons for my Black Friday shopping and that to me is a great savings.

Now on to the grocery deals that we should all be able to take advantage of.  Hams should be on sale pretty cheap (I consider anything under $2.00/pound cheap) and I have already picked up 3.  If you buy a whole ham it is usually $0.10 a pound cheaper than a half ham and you can take it to the meat counter and have it cut however you like.  Some times I have the whole thing sliced, some times 3 half inch steaks cut out of the center and the two hams left on the ends and this year I think I will have one cut into about 3 inch thick roasts.  Also, baking items will be on sale during December, everything from flour, sugar, chocolate, pie crust and the list goes on.  The best thing is that most of these items can be frozen and used all year.  You should also be able to pick up items used for entertaining like crackers, cheese and dips.  I have frozen crackers and cheese with great results.  Be on the lookout for coupons on these items and that will make your savings even better.

This week Kroger has boneless skinless chicken breast, pork chops and hamburger on sale for less than $2.00 per pound. That's pretty good prices for all of those.

Don't forget about things like tape and wrapping supplies. And things like bows, tissue paper, wrapping paper, candy and gift sets (bath sets, perfume, nuts, etc.) the day after Christmas. 

If you need to purchase gift cards be sure to do it when stores are offering extras with the purchase.  My Kroger offers 4 times the fuel points with the purchase of a gift card.  Some restaurants are offering an extra gift card when you buy a certain dollar amount, like $5 when you buy a $25 gift card.  These $5 cards make good gifts through out the year or great stocking stuffers.  Just make sure of the expiration date because some of them are only good through February.

And I should mention one of my favorite stores for decorations and stocking stuffers is Dollar Tree.  I have found quite a few stocking stuffers there on the cheap.

I know money is tight for everyone these days and it is going to get even tighter, so if I only had money to stock up on a little bit, it would be food.  You can make do with things that you already have, but you can't go without food.  If you can only stock up on a few things make sure it's items that you will use and not just things you are buying because it's a good deal.  Money spent on something you aren't going to use is never a good deal.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Post Thanksgiving

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  Daniel and Larissa arrived the Saturday before Thanksgiving around 4:00 p.m.  Sunday we had most of Greg's family for dinner.  I didn't do the traditional Thanksgiving dinner then because I didn't want to be tired of turkey before Thanksgiving even go here.  So we had a baked ham, homemade mac & cheese, homemade bread, corn, green beans (from Greg's sister), broccoli casserole (from sister in law), pumpkin cake, chocolate eclair dessert (sister in law) and spice cookies (sister).

Tuesday we took the girls to Entertrainment Junction. It was really pretty cool. Lots of trains and Christmas decorations and Santa (neither one of the girls were into the whole Santa thing).


 Lily and Dixie at Entertrainment Junction


Thursday was the traditional Thanksgiving dinner.  It was pretty warm at our house so the girls got to play outside, ride the four wheeler and we had a bonfire and roasted marshmallows.

Friday was Black Friday shopping and I managed to get done, with the exception of one gift, with Daniel, Larissa & Dixie.  I am pretty much done shopping for Lily and Greg.  I just have to finish April & Pete, get a gift for one niece and Greg's mom and I'll be done.  I don't know if I've ever had this much done so early.

I have my tree up, but that's all the decorating that I have done so that will be my projects for the next two evenings.  Then we have to get ready for a quick trip to Georgia for a niece's wedding over the weekend.

Have a great day!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

I haven't posted in a couple of weeks because we have been really busy.  Daniel and Larissa will be coming in tomorrow night and we have a busy week ahead so I wanted to take this opportunity to wish every one a Happy Thanksgiving. 

Blessings to you and your family.


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Hectic Week Ahead

This week is starting out to be a busy one.  Last night was my treatment so I put the roast in the slow cooker before I left for work.  After my treatment I microwaved some store bought mashed potatoes and heated up some of the leftover cabbage and corn casserole.

Tonight we will eat out because we are trick or treating at the mall with Lily and April.  Tomorrow night will not be chicken casserole because I don't have any chicken to cook it with.  So we will have to have something else.  Not sure what, just yet but will figure that out. 

Thursday night we will grab a bite out because we are taking a class on Cattle Nutrition and don't have time to go home before the class.

Friday night is my normal grocery shopping night, but I may try to get that done earlier in the week so I can get some other things done Friday night.

Saturday we will begin painting the kitchen the go to Lily's birthday party at Chuck E Cheese.

Hopefully next week will be a little slower with more time spent at home working to get things ready for Daniel & Larissa's visit and the family Thanksgiving dinner we are having the Sunday before Thanksgiving. 

Here is my recipe for the Roast Beef and gravy we had last night:

1 Chuck roast
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can beef broth
1 packet Au Jus mix
1 packet brown gravy mix
1 packet onion soup mix (or raw onions0
Salt & garlic pepper,

Rinse roast, add salt & garlic pepper to taste.  Place in slow cooker.  Mix remaining ingredients together with 1 soup can of water. Stir until blended. Pour over roast and cook on low for 8 hours.  I usually strain the gravy before serving. This makes a really nice brown gravy.


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Slow Cooker Salisbury Steak and Menu

Last night's dinner was another new recipe (2nd for the month of October) the Slow Cooker Salisbury Steak.  We weren't impressed.  There didn't seem to be very much flavor and the texture of the meat was a little mushy.  Here is the recipe and what I actually did:

2 pounds lean ground beef (I used 1.5 pounds)
1 envelope dry onion soup mix
1/2 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1/4 cup milk (I used a little less since I wasn't using as much ground beef)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour (I really didn't measure)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (I didn't measure)
2 (10.75 ounce) cans condensed cream of chicken soup (I used 1 cream of chicken and 1 cream of mushroom) 
1 (1 ounce) packet dry au jus mix
3/4 cup water
I also added some dried onions to the gravy mix 


  1. In a large bowl, mix together the ground beef, onion soup mix, bread crumbs, and milk using your hands. Shape into 8 patties (I only had 6 patties).
  2. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Dredge the patties in flour just to coat, and quickly brown on both sides in the hot skillet. I browned the patties the night before and put them in the fridge til the next morning.  Place browned patties into the slow cooker stacking alternately like a pyramid. In a medium bowl, mix together the cream of chicken soup, au jus mix, and water. Pour over the meat. Cook on the Low setting for 4 or 5 hours, until ground beef is well done.        
I didn't feel as if it was going to have much flavor without some onions so I added the dried onions.  The flavor wasn't bad and if it had been just that I would keep experimenting with this recipe but we just really did not like the texture.

Here is my menu for the next week:

Wednesday: Slow cooker chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans
Thursday: Pork chops, stove top Mac & Cheese, pork & beans
Friday: Out
Saturday: Family birthday party I have to make Corn Casserole and Apple Dumplings
Sunday: Loaded Baked Potato Soup
Monday: Pot roast
Tuesday: Out trick or treating with April & Lily
This week doesn't really have any new recipes but this apple dumpling recipe is YUMMMMMMMYYYYYY.
Have a great day!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Slow Cooker Mexican Chicken

As yesterday was Thursday and my menu called for the Slow Cooker Mexican Chicken I tried it out.  So that is one of my new recipes for October.  It was really good, but I didn't exactly follow the recipe.  So here is the recipe with my modifications.

Slow Cooker Mexican Chicken
4-6 frozen chicken breasts (I only 3 breast but they were pretty large and enough for the two of us)
Bag of frozen peppers and onions (I had frozen bell peppers from my garden so I chopped up half an onion the night before and threw it in the freezer. So I added them and some of the bell peppers.)
Pkg of taco seasoning (next time I will probably use a packet of the hot Taco Seasoning or my homemade Taco Seasoning.  I felt that it could have used a little more heat.)
1 can cream of chicken soup (I used 98% fat free)
1 can Rotel tomatoes (I used my home canned tomatoes with jalapeno peppers.  Since this was my first year doing them they were a little on the mild side which may have been why the whole dish wasn't quite spicy enough.)
Place frozen chicken in bottom of slow cooker. Sprinkle with taco seasoning. Top with frozen onions and peppers. Mix cream of chicken soup and Rotel tomatoes together and then pour over the top. Cook on LOW 6-7 hrs. Serve over cooked yellow rice.

I did cook yellow rice and when I put it on my plate I added a little nacho/taco cheese and a little Italian cheese blend.  Then put some of the juice on top of my rice and mixed it up.  It was very good and I will definitely be making this again.  I also made some re-fried beans.  Next time I will serve some warm tortillas with it.

All in all I'd say it was a success and something outside the "rut".  

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Getting Out of a Rut

Sometimes I feel like I am getting in a rut with my cooking.  It seems like I cook the same few meals over and over.  It feels like we eat chicken, pork, ground beef and then start over, chicken, pork, ground beef.

With a zillion ways to cook chicken & ground beef, it doesn't seem like I should get in a rut. But I do. So to combat the rut, I have decide to try at least 3 new recipes a month.  I will try to start posting my menu for the week and include recipes (especially the new ones).  I haven't determined which day I will be posting the menu but will try to be at least a little consistent.  It is easy for us to get off our schedules and grab a bit on the way home. And we eat out a lot on Friday nights since this is the night I do most of my grocery shopping. Can't shop hungry.  I like to shop on my way home so I don't have to come back into town on the weekends.

Here is my first week of menus:
Tuesday-out with April & Lily
Wednesday: Hamburger Stroganoff & Green beans
Thursday: Slow Cooker Mexican chicken, yellow rice & broccoli
Friday: out
Saturday: Beef, Barley & Vegetable Soup
Sunday: Oven BBQ ribs, Roasted Onion Potatoes & Stewed Cabbage
Monday: Slow Cooker Salisbury Steak, Rice, peas

I will include the recipe for the Beef, Barley & Vegetable soup after I actually make it.  Because I will have to write down what I do as I am making it in order to share the recipe with you.

Here is my recipe for Hamburger Stroganoff:
1.5 pound lean ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion
Salt & Pepper to taste
1 package egg noodles
1 can cream of mushroom soup (I use 98% fat free)
1 can cream of chicken soup (I use 98% fat free)
2 Tablespoons flour
2 Tablespoons ketchup
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 Soup can water
2 large dollops of sour cream (I use fat free)

Brown ground beef and onions with salt & pepper.  While browning bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook noodles.  When ground beef is cooked through add the flour and brown for 1 minute. Do not drain the ground beef.  Add the soups and 1 can of water.  Add ketchup & Worcestershire sauce.  Stir and cook over low heat until mixture thickens and is well incorporated.  Drain noodles and return to pot you cooked them in.  Pour hamburger mixture on top, add sour cream. Mix well.


Wednesday, October 10, 2012


Does Fall get you in the mood for change?  With the change in the weather, the changing leaves and landscape, it sure gets me in the mood for change. We have been cleaning out everything!  This weekend Greg started cleaning out a shed that we really haven't touched since we moved in 8 years ago. It was the shed where we just threw everything we didn't know what to do with when we moved in.  Going from a home that had over 1800 square feet with closets everywhere to one with only 1500 square feet and not one single closet was a challenge. So a lot of stuff just got throw into this shed.  This weekend it got cleaned and straightened.  We hauled a whole truck load of stuff to Good Will and found some things we had been wondering what happened to and some things we thought we had given to the kids but guess what? They were still there. But now there is a lot more room in that shed.

I have been going through clothes and have donated several bags to Good Will. It's a big change for me to actually get rid of things.  I keep thinking "I might need that." or "As soon as I get rid of it, I'll wish I had it."  My mother couldn't throw anything away and I guess some of that rubbed off on me.  But I am changing. I guess if I haven't used it in 8 years, I won't miss it.

We are getting ready to do some painting, the kitchen and bathroom need to be repainted.  I can't seem to decide exactly what it is I want to do in the bathroom.  I really like the border, shower curtain and curtains I have now.  But it is time for a change so I guess I'll keep looking for ideas.

We also changed our china hutch.  I found a really cheap, nice older one like I had been looking for, so here is a picture of it.


Monday, October 1, 2012


The weather is definitely changing here.  Along with the weather change, is the beginning of the beauty of autumn.  The leaves have begun their change and the hills are beginning to be dotted with slight changes in the color of green. They are beginning to look slightly yellowed, with little tiny bits of red showing here and there.  The sky has turned the bluest of blues and we've had several days when there wasn't a cloud in the sky.  Goldenrod is blooming along the road sides and many untended hay fields are alive with purple Iron weed, white Queen Ann's lace and yellow Goldenrod.  God is the perfect artist.  The beauty he creates is unmatched by anything man made.  So even though I am protesting that it is getting colder I am really loving the beauty around me.

I have most of my fall decorations up inside the house and outside of the house. This past weekend we went to the pumpkin patch and had a really good time.  We played on the play grounds with Lily, April & Pete and took the hayride to the pumpkin patch. When we got home I made a pot of farmer sausage, potato & kale soup from Mennonite Girls Can Cook. It was very yummy.

The garden is winding down, I have picked most of the tomatoes after a recent cold snap. We are still getting a few peppers and basil. We did well with green beans and corn, but didn't get hardly any Zipper Cream peas. The deer finally learned that they are quite tasty, so there was none left for us.

I hope everyone is having a Happy Fall and making memories with their families.


Friday, September 7, 2012

Grand News

This is beyond exciting news!  We are going to be grandparents again.  April is expecting a baby on March 31.  This is really great news since the Doctors had told her that she probably would not be able to get pregnant again after her C-section with Lily.

She has had her first appointment and they heard a really strong heart beat.  She will probably have another C-section before March 31. So now we just wait.

God is good!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

A Four Day Weekend

This past weekend was a four day weekend for me.  I took Friday off and Monday was Labor Day.  Friday, I was out shopping for about 6 hours.  I started out at the Amish store, where I bought vital wheat gluten, pickles (for a friend) and a few other odds and ends.  While I was checking out  I noticed that they were taking orders for concord grapes. 18 pounds for $10.  That's less than 60 cents a pound. I was in a little bit of a hurry to get the rest of my shopping done so I didn't order them.  Then I went to CVS where I bought 4 Purex laundry detergents, 4 Dawn dish liquids, a deodorant, and two candy bars for the grand total of $2.89.  Then I went to General Dollar and bought 4 place mats, a table runner, hairspray, and a few other things for $28. Then to Walgreen's where I got 2 more Purex laundry detergent, 2 Almay makeup (hypoallergenic is all I can use) and another deodorant all for less than the price of one of the Almay, $11.41.  Then to Meijer where they had pork loins on sale for $1.77/lb. I picked up a few other things there that were on clearance or BOGO, and a couple of items we needed for the house. Then to Kroger to do the rest of my grocery shopping.  I was beat when I got home.

Saturday found me back at the Amish store ordering grapes and buying mums.  They had some really huge ones for $8.99.

Sunday I made a loaf of bread in my new Breadman bread machine. I finally had a loaf of bread that was just what I was trying to make but had not been successful. It was light and delicious. The vital wheat gluten did the trick.

Monday was our annual apple picking day. So April and Lily went with us to pick apples.  We picked about 2 bushels.  And now April and I both have apples to last us for a while.  I will be making more applesauce in the crock pot, (it is to die for, and I don't even like applesauce), and maybe a couple of pies. We will just eat the rest.  They will last for a really long time in the fridge in clear plastic bags.

After this jam packed weekend, I had to go back to work so I could get some rest.


Friday, August 24, 2012

Exciting News

Our local area has a store called Dollar Tree, I am sure you are familiar with it.  It's one of those stores where everything is a dollar (some items are even less than a dollar.)  I had heard that they were going to start accepting manufacture's coupons on the 26th of August.  So, today at lunch I decided to mosey on over there and find out if our store was one of the ones that would start accepting coupons.  And guess what, they are!!

I've shopped her plenty of times so I did a little shopping. While I was shopping I noticed that they are carrying more national brands than I had seen before.  Some of them are things that I don't normally see coupons on but some of them will be pretty good deals with a coupon. Here are a few things I saw:

Hunts Ketchup
Musselman's pie filling (apple)
Wylers drink mix
Ice Breakers gum

This would be a good place to start checking out for groceries more often. I usually go there for other things. But will definitely start checking out the deals more often.

Somethings I like to get there often are plastic storage container, storage bins, candles, etc.

They do have a coupon policy you can see it here:

Happy shopping.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


We have had a cool snap and it has me getting in the Fall mood.  I don't know what it is about this time of year that I love so much.  Since I really don't like Winter, you would think I wouldn't like Fall as it ushers in Winter.  My father did not like Fall at all.  He said it was a time of year when everything was dying. He did love life and everything about it so I can see why he wouldn't care much for a time of year when everything was dying.

I tend to look at Fall as a time when everything is resting.  The major work of Summer-gardening, canning, mowing, etc- is over. Winter hasn't set in yet so you can still get outside and do things without burning up. I look forward to the resting time Fall brings. I feel as if I get rejuvenated with the cooler weather.

I am trying to put off decorating for fall as it is only the middle of August and every season must have it's time.  

The garden has been the best it has ever been this year.  We actually got 153 ears of corn, before the raccoons got it all.  The green beans are doing well. We have put about 18 quarts in the freezer and they are still blooming and producing.  We have gotten lots of bell and jalapeno peppers and tons of Basil, Sage & Parsley.  Today I picked more Sage, Thyme and Chives from the herb garden at work and will have the dehydrator running again tonight.  Our tomatoes are puzzling this year.  We have lots of them, but they don't seem to want to get ripe.  I picked a few and put them on the window sill to see if that will help. Our area has been fortunate in that we have had quite a bit of rain when people just a few miles north of us have had drought.

The drought and impending winter has me in the stocking up mode.  I believe that prices are going to be rising drastically in the next year.  So, with that in mind I am using every penny of my grocery money to stock up.  This week I bought 25 pounds of rice, never in my life have I bought that much rice at one time even when every one was stocking up for Y2K, I didn't get into it.  This drought is going to make farmer's sell off their cattle sooner and not restock because they can't afford to feed them. And the price of corn and soybeans is going to affect almost everything.

Kendra at New Life on a Homestead has a very good post on her blog about the drought that really got me thinking. Stop over and read it

I think it is wise to buy now before the prices go even higher than they already are. If you have a few extra dollars invest in food.

Hmmm, this seems like a positive post that turned negative at the end.  I don't mean to be negative and I don't actually feel negative, we are blessed to be able to see what is coming in the future and prepare for it.


Monday, June 25, 2012


The winners of the Honey Bunches of Oats coupons are Linda W. and April M.  I will get your coupons to you next week.

Thanks for entering and enjoy!


Friday, June 15, 2012

Contest and Give Aways

As a Purex Insider I have the privilege of bringing you a couple of things you may wish to enter.

Pin It to Win It! This promotion asks Pinterest users to repin an image of a laundry hamper full of socks and guess how many socks are in the hamper. The 5 people who follow the rules and guess the closest to the actual number of socks win a year supply of detergent! Heres where to find it
This promotion asks anyone who is interested to sign up for the chance to win $1000 and a year supply of Borax. You can sign up on (this promotion will not be live until Tuesday the June 19th)
Ladies Home Journal
LHJ is giving away free 1-year subscriptions. Promotion ends on June 22nd. Sign up on

Crystals Coupon
‘Like’ Purex on Facebook to get access to a $1 off Crystals coupon. Let your readers know they can sign up!

And don't forget to enter the Honey Bunches of Oats coupon give away below!
 Good luck!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Honey Bunches of Oats Give Away

Post provided a free sample of Honey Bunches of Oats - Honey Roasted for me to try out.  I have to admit I put it off because I just didn't think I was going to like them.  I tried them this morning and wanted to post about them while it was still fresh in my mind.  They were DELICIOUS!  I'm not much of one to eat anything other than plain cereal (toasted rice, corn flakes) not much of an adventurer when it comes to cereal and milk.  I have always had to add sugar to whatever cereal I eat because I am not a milk fan.  I even told my husband that I wasn't looking forward to trying them.  I was wrong.   I didn't even have to add sugar. They held their crunch all the way through. And they are low in calories and and Carbs.

The best part is they provided me coupons for free boxes to pass on to my readers.  Enter to win by:
1. Leave your name in the comments of this post.
2. Like Honey Bunches of Oats Facebook page at

4 people will win 1 coupon each. Or coupons will be divided between entries if less than 4 people enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The contest is live now and will end on Monday, June 25.

Be sure to enter through the widget.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

What I've Been Up To

We have been really busy lately trying to get the house, yard and garden ready for summer. We have been mowing for about a month longer than usual by now.  It got warm early this year.  We have already picked cherries, and the blackberries are in full bloom.

We took a short vacation down to Lake Cumberland and had a really good time.  We took a ride on the Big South Fork Scenic Railroad.  It is an older train that goes through an old coal mining town that has been restored and then stops in another one that is more like a museum.

We did some antiquing and bought a couple of pieces because the prices there were very reasonable.  We bought a big oak china cabinet that we put in the kitchen and a maple corner cabinet that went in the living room.  I am in love with both pieces.  Here is the picture of the oak cabinet.

I love the primitive look and have been redoing some things.  Here is a candelabra that I redid.



This was a yard sale find a couple of years ago ($1.00) and I couldn't decide what to do with it until I came across a website that told me how to prim it up.  I really enjoyed doing it.

Make sure you stay tuned as I will be holding another give away soon!


Friday, March 23, 2012

Money Saving Links

There are a few things I do that help earn money, gift cards or coupons through out the year. I have a PayPal account that I try to send as much survey money into each year as I can. It isn't much but it usually adds up to a couple of Christmas gifts.

I use Swagbucks which is search engine that pays you for searching. When I have enough Swagbucks I cash them in for a PayPal gift card which goes right into my PayPal account. Here is a link to get you started:

I also use SavingStar. This is a program that you attache your store loyalty card to, and load coupons onto your loyalty card. Then you shop as you normally would, using any paper or electronic coupons that you would normally use. The store knows nothing about your SavingStar coupons. The money for the SavingStar coupons are added to your account and once you reach $5 you can cash out. Here is the link:

Ebates is another great way to save a little extra cash. Ebates is a rebate system. If you are shopping online all you have to do is go to Ebates, search for the store you are shopping at and click on Ebates' lnk to that store. Once you get to the store's website, shop as usual. The rebate is added to your Ebates account automatically. Then once a quarter you get a check. I have mine put into my PayPal account. Here is the link: It really is that simple. I usually only get a check around Christmas when I am doing a lot of ordering. Ebates doesn't have every store you would want use but they do have a very large variety.

I know these are just little things but the little things do add up. It cost you nothing to join any of these programs and it's not like it even cost you very much time. And with the economy the way it is every little bit helps.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Beginning Couponing/Stockpiling

I was recently asked “How do you start couponing?” I realize when you watch things like “Extreme Couponing” and read articles about people getting all of their food for free, it can seem overwhelming. But in my book if you are spending more than an hour a week on clipping coupons something is wrong. Coupons are meant to save you money and time has to also be counted as money, because your time is worth something. Here are a few pointers in getting started.

Make a grocery budget. Here is a link to the USDA Food Plans:

It gives you a starting point which I think is a little bit high. It lists the “Thrifty Plan” for a family of 4 at $145.20/week. I try to keep my budget for food, toiletries, pet food and paper goods at $100 week for 2 people. Their list is for food only.

1. Stick to you budget.

2. Start out small, even if you only use 5 $1.00 coupons per week that adds up to $260/year.

2. Buy 2 newspapers for the first few times. I still only buy two newspapers. Very seldom do I need more than 2 coupons on an item before the coupon comes out again. Coupons and sales usually are on a 12 week cycle. In other words the coupon in this Sunday’s paper will probably be out again in 12 weeks.

3. Buy your needs first.

4. There may be a store that you want to use for your needs, which has lower everyday prices and a different store for you coupon purchases, which has better sales or offers.

5. Make a menu and a shopping list. When you make your menu, go through your food items that you have on hand and make a list of the items that you do not have. Add anything else you need to the list.

6. Go through you coupons and see if you match any to the items on your shopping list. On your first trip, try to match at least 5 $1.00 coupons to your list. This will give you $5 left over from your budget to start stocking up on something.

7. Look through the ads for the week and see what is on sale. The best way to save money is to use coupons on top of sale prices.

8. Don’t be brand loyal (unless you can afford it) and don’t be afraid to try new things. There are only a few items that I prefer a name brand and I try really hard to only buy those items when they are on sale. If an item that I really like is on sale I will buy it whether or not I have a coupon. For instance Kraft Mayo (the only kind I use) was on sale last week for $2.49. That is a really good deal since mayo is nearing $5 a jar. I happened to have a store coupon for $1.00 off 2 so I bought 2. I would have bought them even without the coupon. I have worked my budget so that I can allow myself to be brand loyal on Mayo. But truly that is about the only thing I am brand loyal to.

9. Don’t be afraid to buy meat that has been marked down, i.e. manager’s specials. They are usually getting close to the sale by date, but have not passed that date. These items are perfectly fine to take home and freeze.

10. Don’t buy something just because you have a coupon for it. If you aren’t going to use it it’s wasting money, not saving.

11. Most items have an expiration date so don't have so many of something that there is no way you can use it before it expires.

12. You can freeze almost anything so don't be afraid to buy things that are on sale if you have freezer space for them. I know people who even freeze canned biscuits. If you aren't sure if it can be frozen, search the web to find out.

So after you have done all these things take your coupons to the grocery store. You may have to go through the store twice your first couple of trips. On your first trip to through the store get your needs. Remember to use those 5 $1.00 coupons. Now that you have gotten your needs out of the way, go back through the store to see if there is something that you can use that $5 to stock up on. For instance you see some meat in the manger’s special case that you can stock up on, but $5 worth. It may not be a lot but next week you have some extra meat and you can use the money that you saved from buying that extra meat plus your $5 coupon savings. This should give you around $10 the next week to stock up on something else. And it should build each week.

Keep setting goals on the amount of money you want to save by using coupons each week. You may not always reach that goal but remember it’s better to aim at something and miss than to not aim at all. You will gradually get the hang of couponing & stockpiling.

Hope this helps.


Monday, March 5, 2012


Friday night was an interesting night to say the least. Northern Kentucky was struck by severe weather and tornados. This is the closest I guess I’ve ever been to tornado destruction. It is simply amazing. One house is totally destroyed and the next isn’t even touched. I know people who lost their homes and livestock and people who lost grandparents. My heart goes out to the people who have lost so much.

The pictures have been shocking. I have always felt that we should be prepared for disasters but I really don’t think there is a whole lot you can do to be prepared for such as this. But I have thought of a few things:

1.. We need to get a fireproof, waterproof safe and put all of important paperwork in it. Insurance policies, wills, etc.

2 Store a copy of those same important papers somewhere else. It is not recommended to keep wills and papers you may need on short notice in a safe deposit box. So if you have a relative that lives a little ways from you keep it there. The chances of both of you being hit are not as high.

3. Do not keep cash in your mattress.

4. If you are hit by a tornado, get what you can as soon as you can. I have heard that once the FEMA comes you are not allowed back on your property until they have bulldozed everything. I could not get a clear answer about this online.

5. Make a list of all accounts and phone numbers for those accounts. They found tax records for one of the homes here that was destroyed in Columbus OH. These people are having to close all credit cards and get new Social Security numbers in case they have fallen into the wrong hands.

6. Stay put. These storms came through between 3-5:30 p.m. Lots of people left work when they heard about tornados touching down. Being in your car is not the safest place to be. I know of 2 deaths that occurred because cars were swept off the road and one lady was not found until the next day. If you can stay in a building or get to shelter ASAP.

7. If you have a basement, keep plenty of water, and food there in case you get trapped in it.

We do not have a basement, but I am considering what else we could do to store a few things that might come in handy in a situation like this .

I know some farmers actually had to shoot livestock that was hurt so having some bullets and a gun in a safe place might be prudent. But without a basement, I don’t really know where to store such things as guns, bullets, and the fireproof safe. But you bet I will be looking for options.

Maybe it’s a good time to build a root cellar.


Monday, February 6, 2012

Turkey Breakdown

Sounds like some sort of dance or something, but really it's a breakdown of expenses for the turkey dinner I prepared this weekend.

Turkey $10.00 (for this first meal we ate less than 25% so I rounded up to $2.50

Leftover cornbread (I consider this free because it would have been counted in the meal we actually ate cornbread.) So $0
Onion - $.10
Cream of Chicken soup - $.80
Poultry Seasoning - $.10
Eggs - (from the chickens, not really free but we don't pay for them)
Butter - $.20
Total $1.10 - We only ate about a third so $.36

Giblet gravy
Flour - $.20
Oil - $.10
giblets (included in price of turkey) - $0
2 Eggs - $0
Broth/water (cooked giblets in water, used that water/broth and extra water) - .$25
Total $.55 used half so $.28

Peas - we grew in our garden - $0
Total for this meal $3.35

Then we took leftovers to our daughters for sandwiches, that meal for 4 of us cost about $4.00. This includes a small fresh loaf of bread that cost $2.25 from the Amish store, chips, and mayo.

Today we are having leftover turkey sandwiches for our lunch and including chips, snacks, fruit and drinks the cost is approximately $2.16

Tonight we will have the leftover turkey, dressing, gravy and green beans. This meal will be about $4.50 because I paid for the green beans.

Hopefully we will have enough turkey leftover to make a turkey pot pie later in the week. I am estimating this meal to cost about $3.00 and that includes some leftover mashed potatoes hanging out in the fridge.

A grand total for this small turkey I made - we have 4 meals for $14.01 and a possible 5th meal making it $17.01. When you average this out it comes in at $3.40 per meal. That's pretty good in my book. Not to mention all the cheap broth from boiling the carcass and maybe even a pot of soup.

It really does pay to buy those turkeys when they go on sale at Thanksgiving. I will bake a turkey at least 3 more times this year.

P.S. This was a Butterball turkey. I have bought Butterballs in the past but usually opt for the cheaper birds. This one had a rebate this year, making it about the same as the store brand birds. I usually always make a good turkey, but with Butterball, you don't have to make a good bird, it's already good. It takes very little in the way of improvements.


Monday, January 30, 2012

Sloppy Chicken

The real recipe is called Elegant and Easy chicken. But my family likes to call it sloppy chicken. I found this recipe a long time ago and I really don't remember where I found it. But it quickly became one of my daughter's favorite. I am sure I have made alterations to the original recipe, but here is my version.

Chicken (1 whole, cut into pieces or 6 small boneless, skinless chicken breast)
1 can sloppy Joe sauce
1 can mushrooms
1 medium onion
1 sloppy Joe sauce can of water
2 tbs. oil (your choice)

Brown chicken in skillet using 2 tbs oil. Remove chicken from pan and pour off oil. Place chicken back in pan, add onions and allow to wilt. Pour sloppy Joe sauce and 1 can of water on top. Top with mushrooms and simmer until chicken is done. Time will vary if you use bone-in chicken vs. boneless, skinless.

I usually serve with rice pilaf, and a green vegetable.

Even though it has sloppy Joe sauce, it only taste a little like sloppy Joe's.


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Crock Pot Roast Beast

We have always been big fans of "How the Grinch Stole Christmas". I always like to think that the Grinch found the true meaning of Christmas. Christ changed his heart as He does for all who accept Him. So in honor of the movie we have always called it roast beast in our house. This recipe is not healthy or low fat. It's just a very good, easy roast beef.

For this recipe you need to buy the cheapest beef roast that you can find, which these days isn't very cheap.
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 packet Au Jus seasoning
Garlic Pepper
Onions (I use dried onions)
1 can beef broth

Season your roast with salt & garlic pepper. Place in crock pot. Place remaining ingredients in a medium sized bowl. Add 2 soup cans of water and mix well. Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours. Server with mashed potatoes, rice or noodles. You want believe how good this smells when you walk in the house after a long day, nor how good it taste.