Showing posts from August, 2010

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Typically on Sunday I recap the previous week's good, bad and ugly in regards to finances. But this week I just don't feel like it. I decided to take a break from thinking about finances this weekend and will regroup for September. August was a spendy month and I hope to get a reign on things for September.


So this week was my first week of work. I am working in the SAACP program afterschool.  I had orientation on Monday. I worked Wednesday afternoon, and the kids stayed home with Bill, who had the day off. I worked Friday afternoon and the kids stayed with my mom. The job is very easy and  I think the biggest challenge I will have is dealing with some of the kids' attitudes. Some of the kids' have major attitude problems. I think that I will enjoy it though. It is easy money as far as I am concerned. The kids do snack time, homework time, and play/activity time. And Fridays are movie day and special snack day. The first week though overall went well! :)

There was one setback. I had to get fingerprints done and so I went and had them done on Thursday. They said that they were accepted, but then we got a phone call yesterday afternoon and said that one of the fingerprints didn't take....and of course they called after the place to get them done had closed. So I have to go get …

Gifts for the kids for free using online resources

So in trying to keep the budget down, I am trying to use my internet time wisely and being creative with obtaining gifts for my children. Jacob and Rebecca's birthdays are coming up. Jacob's b-day is in October; Rebecca's b-day is in November. And then of course there is Christmas in December. So I have to be creative if I don't want to break the bank.

Over the course of this week, I have ordered 3 books for each child, and a puzzle for each child for FREE! How did I do it...

I ordered Rebecca a Melissa and Doug Underwater 48 piece floor puzzle from Amazon, using a $5 gift card I got in an email for ordering a magazine subscription over a year ago from Amazon magazines and a gift card I got using Swagbucks from So final price= FREE

I ordered a Melissa and Doug Safari Chunky Puzzle for Jacob using Pampers Gift to Grow points. So a puzzle for Jacob for FREE!!

I won $20 in children's books from from a blog giveaway from coupongeek. :) With t…

Menu Plan Monday

Another week....another menu :)
Last week didn't go so well...I had a lot of issues caused by depression and things just didn't get made. This week I hope goes much, much better. (Fingers crossed!) There are a couple things going on this week, most notably I start my new job!! So I have to get into a routine and make sure that I can feed the family without much effort. So with that being said, here is my menu plan for the week:
MONDAY: corn dogs, peaches, peas
TUESDAY: grilled turkey and cheese sandwiches, strawberries and grapes
WEDNESDAY: Beer battered fish, broccoli, rice
THURSDAY: baked chicken, julienne potatoes, corn
FRIDAY: macaroni and cheese and pears
SATURDAY: leftovers
SUNDAY: pizza and fruit
For more menu ideas please visit I'm an Organizing Junkie

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Time for another rendition of the Good, the Bad and the Ugly. This is a weekly recap of my family's financial world in all of it's glory and mess.

The GOOD:: Well this week I won a blog giveaway, which you can read about here. I won $20 worth of children's books that I will use towards Rebecca and Jacob's Christmas and birthday gifts. I was able to get them each 3 books from Amazon. has a great 4 for 3 promotion going on a ton of their books. If you buy 3 of the participating books, you can pick out the 4th for free. It is a great promotion! I also received a gift card from Walmart that I had earned through That will also go toward Christmas or b-days.

The BAD:: I didn't get my fingerprinting done this week for the job. I just did not have time. It really isn't a huge deal but it is something that I have to get done for my job at the school. I have to make it a priority to get this done early next week.

The UGLY:: I had to go to the d…

I WON! I WON! I can't believe I won!

I won a blog giveaway! :) I don't enter every blog giveaway that I see, but I will if it is something that could be of use to our family and be another way of stretching our dollar. Well yesterday I won! I won $20 in Children's book from from Coupon Geek. I am SO EXCITED! I have never won anything before!

If you have never been to Coupon Geek , you are missing out! She puts up the best deals, coupons and sales that she can find. I have used her site many times to learn about coupons and deals that work for me!

Well I am off to browse Amazon for some books for Rebecca and Jacob. I am going to keep them and use them as part of their birthday presents! Yay!

Buying something for me!

In July, I received 2 gift cards for my birthday. I have a hard time buying myself anything or knowing what to spend them on....(but at the same time, I would rather get gift cards than some present that I hate or would never use...) Typically I end up not buying myself anything and using them on the kids or just using them on groceries or something. I am going to try to use these on me and focus on me! I used part of one to buy my new body pillow and cover, a can opener, and some new kitchen rags. Exciting? Not really, but needed. Well today I just realized what I would spend some of the gift card on....

On September 14, 2010 my favorite author releases his next book!! I am SUPER excited. I love this author and while I am trying to keep my book collection down ( I got rid of a TON of books before we moved), I have every book this author has released and have re-read them all many times! So on Sept.14, 2010 I will be buying....

I am super excited. His books make me cry and laugh and …

Wanting another baby

Something that has been on my mind a lot recently...

So I have a yearning and if fulfilled it would result in us having another baby. I love my children! I really thought that when we had Jacob that our family was complete. We would be a family of 4 and that would be that. We had achieved the typical American, dad, daughter, son. (Now just to add the dog and the house and white picket fence...someday.) Anyways, I THOUGHT we were done.... Thought being the word there. Over the last month or so, I have started to feel the yearning again. Maybe it is because Jacob is 10 months old and Rebecca will be 4 in November. I don't know.

I just know that I want another baby. I get a feeling of sadness when I read or hear about someone else's pregnancy, almost like I am jealous. My college roommate is pregnant with her first and though I am happy for her, I want that to be me. Every time I turn on the TV it seems like another star is announcing their pregnancy or birth of thei…

Living Better Ideas

There are many things in life that a person can do or can say no to that will help them to live better one day at a time. But the problem is that some things will work for some people, while some things won't work for others. I like to read blogs and other articles online to see if I can gain new tips and tricks that will help me live better one day at a time. Sometimes I find several helpful ideas and tricks, and other times I will find something that sounds good but isn't practical to my own life. One big example of that is Flylady. I know that her ideas and tips work well for a lot of people, but I cannot follow her system to a tee. I took bits and pieces and made it work for me. Other things that work for me are:

1. MENU PLANNING-- this is actually a new discovery. I have tried and tried over the years to do menu planning and never stuck to it. That is because usually I am only cooking for myself and Rebecca. And she is picky! :) Well I decided a couple weeks ago that I ne…


So another week has come and gone. I think that trying to find a menu plan and sticking with it has helped me to eat better and made my life a little simpler and has helped each day to live a little better. Another way is to review the previous week to see what worked and what didn't before making this weeks menu. So last week, this is how I did.
MONDAY: lasagna with provolone and green beans--YEP!!

TUESDAY: hot dogs, baked beans, and peaches--YEP!!!
WEDNESDAY: grilled chicken, peas (for the kid), green beans (for me), fruit--YEP!!!

THURSDAY: BBQ pork sandwiches (think McRib from McDonalds), pasta salad, fruit (for us); spaghettios and fruit for Rebecca-- nope. We ended up meeting my parents for dinner. We had this on Friday instead! FRIDAY: chicken tacos for us, chicken nuggets and veggies for Rebecca--Nope had Thursday's me
al, but had this on Saturday instead!
SATURDAY: leftovers--nope. Had Fridays dinner instead! :)
SUNDAY: pizza--YEP!!
So, overall I think I did AWESOME foll…

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly....

So time again for the Good, the Bad, the Ugly for the week of finances....

The Good:  I made a menu plan off the sales, shopped the sales and really didn't spend alot of money this week! I find that I go to the store just because I am bored and I usually end up buying a lot more that we don't need. This week I did one run to Kroger for groceries and spent about $80 but that was also stocking up on some things that were on major low price sale. We went to Walmart too on Friday but that was just to get a new pillow (due to the bat thing) and a new can opener. These things I bought using a gift card that I got for my b-day so no money spent there.
The Bad: We got our Directv bill. I have a definite love/hate relationship with this bill. I like having satellite because they offer programming for everyone and I know it is something that dear Hubby wants. I don't like this time of year when the football packages are added onto it. I will say that dear hubby is lucky this year. He…


So last night, I had the most terrifying experience. Around 1:15 am, Bill was reading in bed and I was asleep. All of a sudden he woke me up frantic and was rolling off the bed and yelling "bat, bat". There was a BAT flying around our bedroom!!!!!!! EEKKKK!!!!!!! He said he heard it before he saw it and he tried to get me out. I guess I screamed because I woke both kids up. I saw a black bat flying out of the corner of my eye.

After calming down, we took the kids downstairs and decided to try to find out if Mount Vernon has an animal control. (We've only lived here 2 months!) We couldn't find the number so Bill decided to call the Mount Vernon police department. They sent an officer out right away and after a couple minutes (seemed like an hour), he captured the bat and got rid of it for us. After that Rebecca wanted to sleep with us....which meant that she was awake until 5:30 am and I got NO sleep....I finally started falling asleep around 6:15am, when my brother d…


So last week I did a little better than the week before...Here's how last week went:
MONDAY: grilled chicken, peas, and apples--Yes

TUESDAY: fish, corn, applesauce, tomatoes and cucumbers--nope, can't remember what we had, but it wasn't fish.
WEDNESDAY: macaroni and cheese, green beans and fruit--yes but with mixed veggies instead of green beans
THURSDAY: spaghetti and garlic bread--just had spaghetti, no garlic bread
FRIDAY: turkey sandwiches, apples--nope, had chicken nuggets and veggies
SATURDAY: leftovers/ pizza--yes
SUNDAY: leftovers/ pizza--yes. We had pizza. Sunday nights are turning into pizza and movie night, watching the hour long movie that NickJr. shows at 7pm.

So overall not too bad, but not too great either. I need to become more consistent. This is what I came up with for this week. I hope we can do this. What I did this time, was look ahead at the forecast to see what the weather was supposed to be like (HOT, HOT and HOT!!!). So we shall see how this week …

The GOOD, the BAD, and the UGLY--August 8, 2010

Another week has gone by. Time to recap the good, the bad and the ugly of our family's financial world....So here goes.....

THE GOOD: I found my reference letter that I thought had been thrown out! One of the requirements of the school job is that they have 3 letters of reference on file. I had one on file from a courtcase that I had last year against a former employer (it was written as part of the settlement). I called my former principal at Mater Dei Academy and she called me back and agreed to write one for me and to mail it. And I emailed my college advisor and he agreed to email one to the woman who hired me! Yay! So I have the 3!  I also have already done one of the other requirements...the Protecting God's Children class that is required for the Catholic Church. I did that when I was teaching full time. Now just to get the fingerprints and background check done. I had it done in 2001 but it has to be done every 5 years. So things are looking up in regards to that job!

The job that wasn't...

So I had posted before about how I had gotten 2 jobs. One for an afterschool care program and one at Walmart. Well yesterday was my orientation at Walmart. I should have known from the beginning there was going to be a problem...the woman running it had no clue as to what we were supposed to be doing. She never checked our books to see if we had the right answers or were participating in the program. At another point she was supposed to show us how to use the compactor and baler...that consisted of us walking back and her saying there it is and walking past. She kept asking the personnel manager if these forms were the right ones, etc. The manager on duty was supposed to come and talk to us, but she didn't even call for him. She assumed he was too busy. (He was out back smoking as we saw from our "tour" of the back.) Very, very disorganized! Right before we leave, she rushes us through clocking out and then hands us our schedules for the next 3 weeks....I look at my sche…

Menu Plan--August 2- 8, 2010

So last week didn't go so well again. SIGH... But that just means things will be switched over to this week. This is how I did last week:

Monday: leftovers/ chicken fried rice, melon--had this

Tuesday: hamburgers, fruit--nope, had leftovers I think. (can't remember)

Wednesday: (my b-day): hot dogs, fruit-- nope. Ended up going out to dinner with my parents for my b-day

Thursday: dinner out with my in-laws for my b-day-- yep, went to dinner with my hubby, kids and inlaws.

Friday: grilled chicken, broccoli, pineapple---nope, we had leftovers from the dinners out and from Subway lunch that we had at the park that afternoon

Saturday: fish, corn, applesauce-- nope, the kids and I spent the day in Utica with my parents and we met Bill for dinner at Roosters.

Sunday: leftovers or pizza night-- Yep, we had pizza.

Overall last week was a nightmare on our diet. We ate out way too much (although we didn't have to pay for any of the eating out! :) We shall see what this week brings w…

The Good, The Bad and the Ugly--August 1, 2010

It's that time again. Time for the Good, the Bad and the Ugly of the previous week. Let's see what last week held.....
THE GOOD:: I got both jobs. I am going to be working overnight at Walmart and then I found out that I got the St. Vincent job as well! This will be a huge help for us financially, however I am very, VERY anxious about working again and leaving the kids. Also Bill decided that giving up Directv's Sunday Ticket this year made sense. I told him we couldn't afford the $350 that it costs, especially if he wasn't going to be home to watch many of the games. After some hemming and hawing, he agreed!
THE BAD: I didn't use any coupons this week at the grocery store. And it was mostly because I didn't have them with me. Now, I didn't spend a ton at the store, but I just didn't feel like going back home and getting them. This week was rather low spend at the grocery store, so I am okay with it, but every little bit helps.
THE UGLY:: I have had …