Monday, December 27, 2010

A Facebook ---- duh Julie moment….

I am sharing this for others that might have not had this illuminating moment on Facebook yet.

I have been trying to figure out how to filter my newsfeed. (for those that already know how, don’t laugh… some things take me awhile to catch on to…k?)  Anyways, I’d like to be able to click a button and find all the games my friends have updated recently, or at some times just see status updates and not the game things…   do you know there is a way to do this??????   AND it’s simple.

1 facebook for blog

 

See that most recent… see there is an arrow after it…. well if you click it you get a drop down menu that looks like this:

2 for facebook web post

See I put an arrow next to games…. if I click there I will only see my Farmville friends game posts…. how cool is that? (as my dear friend would say and you know who you are).   ---yes, I play Farmville, don’t judge me.

3 for facebook post

If I click on the status updates.. it filters out all the other stuff.. pages and game updates etc.

Now, when I am on there to see what my friends are up to.. I can click on status and not have to scroll through all the game play stuff. 

I block all the games I don’t play.  Recently the came out with Cityville.  That really doesn’t interest me so when they started popping up if you hit the ‘x’ in the upper right corner of the post you get the option to block the person sending them or block the application.  Just block the application and you will never have to deal with one of them again.  Smile

Friday, December 10, 2010

Glad THAT’S Over…. Next.

 

Finally, the semester has ended.  Final grades are not posted yet but pretty sure I passed everything.  Didn’t pass with the grades I would have wanted, however, as tough as those classes are I’m happy to have passed.  Especially with the memory issues I have been having lately.

The last month I pondered over it, talked with my professor and a dear friend (you know who you are) and made the tough decision to just go back to my business major.  Taking general businesses classes next semester and then may cross on into Human Resources Management.  All the classes I take will apply to that degree and the basic medical terminology and other classes I took this past semester won’t hurt in my future if I wanted to apply at a hospital or such.  I guess the semester was not entirely wasted.  

I have a month off (basically) before classes start again.  How am I going to use my time? 

Well, if I can get my little guy to slow down a bit I’ll cuddle with him, spend some time outside on the warmer days maybe blowing bubbles and start to pack.  It looks like we are going to end up moving to GA.  Probably mid-semester next semester so I made sure to have all online classes just in case.  I am going to start with packing books, knick knacks, photos etc.  This place will look barren but it’ll be a jump start on getting things done.  I have done four other long distance moves in the past, well, ok three, one of them the Navy did and that was NICE.  They pack and move everything for you!!!  I know that it has to be much more organized and together than if you are moving a few miles across town and can make trips back and forth.

I am also going to get a jump start on getting my coupons more organized to my standards.  More on that in an upcoming blog post, including pros and cons of coupon binders vs. filing the weekly flyers whole….

I am excited to move. To see a new part of our country.  Finally be able to spend time with my bestest friend in the whole world.  (we have been friends since second grade… a VERY long time).  Excited to start on a new adventure.  However,  I am not excited to leave my older kids in another state.  I think there should be some rule that no matter what decision you make in your life, what decisions you are FORCED to make you kids ALWAYS have to go with you. 

Thinking about that for a second that would never work.  We would all be living with parents/grandparents/great grandparents forever.  I guess that wouldn’t be a BAD thing. lol

So, my 18 year old daughter moved out a week ago.  Tough day for me.  She had been threatening since she turned 18 as all kids do and I’m sure we did as kids.  She was 18, she was an ‘adult’ she didn’t need rules.  Well, I called and told her to come home I had cooked dinner.  She called her sister and had her sister call me to tell me that she was moving out and not coming home.  Nice huh?

So, I am down to two boys at home.  My 19 year old and my 19 month old.  Smile  The 19 year old does not want to move to GA but finances may force him to have to move with us.  I don’t want him to be unhappy moving with us but I can’t say that it won’t be nice to have him with us.

I spent this evening clipping some coupons.  At a little after 11 we ran to wally for diapers.  My older son was home from work so he kept an eye on the little guy so we could go and not have to fight crazy people. (Not that the people out in the middle of the night aren’t crazy… some of them were quite questionable… but the holiday crowds.. not my cup o’ tea). 

Well, it’s almost 3 a.m.!  I’m going to try to sleep.  Was up till 3:30 last night. Not sure why.  Guess it’s time to break out the melatonin again. 

Saturday, November 27, 2010

More Savings Sites/Videos

Since everyone seemed to enjoy my last post on savings I am going to add more links and videos here that I have found since making that post.

We are in the process of getting organized to move to GA.  Big plus:  DOUBLE COUPONS>>>  so I have been watching videos by other super savers to learn how to stack coupons.  Which stores are best and different policies. 

www.southernsavers.com    great for links to stores in the south and lists of match ups.

www.afullcup.com  awesome forum to find deals and share deals with others.

For those near a Kroger: 

This one is just for sheer inspiration:

http://dealseekingmom.com/

http://www.couponing101.com/

This website I just love.  She is more on simplifying your life than on couponing BUT if we simplify couponing will be easier.  Smile

http://down---to---earth.blogspot.com/

Ok I’ll keep searching… for now enjoy these sites and videos. 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tough Times Savings Strategies

As some of you already know we have struggled financially since I lost my job, however, recently an unexpected loss of almost 900/month has put us struggling more than we ever have before.  Not knowing how we are going to pay upcoming bills is so very stressful but I try to find even more ways to save money.  It helps keep me occupied and my mind on a more positive note.

I also had a friend message me recently and tell me she loved some of the savings sites I had posted in the past and that she is without work for awhile and would love to have more sites and money savings ideas so here it goes.   This might end up being quite lengthy but I’m sure you’ll appreciate it. Smile

I am going to list links to other sites, some of my previous blog posts that you may have missed that can help your family same some money. 

One thing that saves me a major hunk of change is making my own laundry soap. (click link to go to how to page) Don’t knock it till you try it.  The stuff works great, takes less than 10 minutes to make and saves probably $30 bucks a month if you have a good sized family that does a lot of laundry.  I used to go through 3 containers of soap a month that could cost upwards of $15/container.  (I had a child that couldn’t use just any soap – but the home made stuff doesn’t bother her skin so win win)  My new laundry soap looks much different than the first few batches.  I now use Zote soap which you can buy at Save A Lot for a dollar or under.  (one bar makes two five gal buckets) – Zote is pink so I have pretty soap!   I also make a 5 gallon batch at a time in a large bucket I purchased for $3 @ Gander Mtn. This bucket will last us MONTHS and Months.  One box of borax and washing POWDER (not baking soda) will easily make enough soap for a year! With three – four bars of soap… how cheap is that!

If you have problems in your area finding washing powder or borax you can purchase online (sometimes cheaper than at your local store) from Alice.com   This site has great savings on many everyday household items, many times cheaper than walmart (and you don’t have to pay gas for the trip)  If you buy over 6 items shipping is absolutely FREE.  I try to check Alice @ least once a month for sales.  They also have coupons available on site.

Using coupons is a GREAT way to save.  Especially if you live in an area where they double or even on certain days triple coupons.  Some great links to learn couponing AND where they give you FREE match ups to save you time.  (the person posts the sale and links to where to find matching coupons).

One of my favorite sites is www.couponmom.com she also has a great Youtube channel with how to videos for couponing @ http://www.youtube.com/user/CouponMom

Great video on using cvs http://www.youtube.com/user/CouponMom#p/a/8008CBA64662E85E/2/7xdGVhnm-so

www.weusecoupons.com  forums where ppl post the deals they have found.

www.hotcouponworld.com  more forums with match ups

http://dealseekingmom.com/

http://www.couponing101.com/

http://proudtobecheap.blogspot.com/

http://www.centsible-sawyer.com/   great links for match ups also at the top you will see a link for cvs 101.  If you have a cvs in your area combining sales, coupons and extra bucks can get your shampoos and everyday items for super cheap or even free.

Couponing may seem like a lot of work but when you weigh out how much you save it’s well worth an hour or two of work.  Where I live in central FL I have not found any stores that double coupons.  So, many times I end up doing most of my shopping at Aldis or Save A Lot and save the most that way.  Taking the time to make a PRICE BOOK will also help you get the most for your money.  This book will let you know the best price you have paid for an item and where it is at.  Eventually you will get to where you can see a trend on sales for each store and can help plan that way.

One tip I learned after a few months… I don’t clip all the coupons at once.  I file them in a box with the date of the insert written in sharpie marker on the front of each insert.  Each type of insert has a folder.  I have one for RedPlum, One for P&G, One for Smartsource and so on.  I put the newest in the front of each folder.  As I go to the forums and websites to find weekly match ups they give you the source of the coupon either a link to a printable coupon or will say s/s 5/11 meaning it’s from the 5/11 paper.  So all I have to do is pull that one out and clip and put back.

http://jane4girls800dollarannualbudget.blogspot.com/   this mom went extreme.  She feeds her and her three daughters on $800 a year!!!!   Great tips.  Daily links to $ savings.

www.hillbillyhousewife.com has some great free money savings e-books and recipes/menus.

http://www.5dollardinners.com/   great meals to feed your whole family of 4 for $5 or under.  She has just added a great recipe tool that you can click on ingredients to add to a printable shopping list.

From the above sites you can also find the importance of menu planning to save money.  Menu planning is one of the top priorities when you are trying to save on groceries.  You plan your menu, make a list of what you do not have on hand, and go to the store and BUY WHAT IS ON THE LIST.  When you are really trying to save using the sales fliers for the stores weekly sales and what you have on hand to plan your menu will save you the greatest amount of moo-lah. Smile

Another great website/tool that I enjoy using is ZIP LIST it allows you to make grocery lists and save recipes and make lists from it.  It’s a quick and easy way to help you organize your shopping especially if you need to hit several stores in the same area to make the most of their sales.

http://mealplanningmommies.blogspot.com/

http://blog.plantoeat.com/  some great tips but also has a subscription service.  I stick with the free stuff. Smile

http://savingdinner.com/   great free tips she also has a service you can subscribe to to give you weekly menus/shopping lists.  This is great if you are working a lot and do not have time to do this on your own.

I’ll end my post now since you already have a ton to look at.  I will add more later on as I think of them.  Please feel free to comment me and leave any questions you might have.  Use google and YOUTUBE to learn more on couponing and saving.  They have both been an WONDERFUL resource to help me.

For many of the blog sites you can subscribe to the blogs daily RSS feed in order to have it sent to you in a feed reader or email so you don’t miss any posts about great savings!  I do this with most money savings blogs I belong to.

Friday, October 22, 2010

What to heck doc?

Ok, my chief complaints when I went to the doctor were my memory issues and concentration.  He gave me sample meds and none of the side effect info so last night I googled it.  In the list of side effects:  memory issues and confusion.   What gives?

These are the two symptoms I want gone yesterday!!  I am a patient but I am not patient....

Thursday, October 21, 2010

I'm not lost...at least I don't think I am

So, I haven't blogged in awhile and for that I deeply apologize.  I will explain in detail my absence.  I am going to be completely honest and up front, mainly so that if others are dealing with what I am dealing with they can maybe find comfort in knowing they are not alone.

First, college is kicking my tush.  It's not so much college but my health issues that I am dealing with along with college that are kicking my tush.  Let me give you a brief history...

In high school I was a great student.  I have always loved to learn new things and found it quite easy to do so.  I graduated in the top 10 in my high school class (which really isn't saying much I think there were only 72 of us).  I enjoyed studying.  Two years ago when I went to a semester of college just before my "surprise" baby came along I enjoyed it.  It was still fairly easy to me.

This time, not so much.  Most of my adult life I have suffered from depression.  I have been treated off and on for years.  When I found out I was pregnant I immediately stopped all meds.  I went back on a low dose mid pregnancy and through out breast feeding.  Then when I stopped breastfeeding back to a normal dose.  However, things really didn't improve.  I have complained to my doc for about three years that my memory is getting bad.  Now it's REALLLLLLLLY bad.  It's so bad it's scary.

So, in July I went to the doc and told them I must have early onset Alzheimer's because why else would I forget total conversations I just had less than 10 minutes ago?  After talking with my new doc she said I have all the symptoms of bipolar 2.  This would explain why my depression and issues surrounding it have never gotten better because I was treated for depression only, not my other issues and for the first time in my life I was sent for a full psychiatric evaluation.

That scared me to be honest.  Crazy people need psychiatric evaluations, not ME.  But, with all the memory and concentration issues I knew I needed it.  So, before I get the appointment for this I start college.  Long about week six I am seriously worried again.  I logged on to my test site to take a test.  The title at the top of the page said "cardiovascular system".  I flipped!  I told my hubby "Oh no!  I read the whole wrong chapter!!"  I ran and got my book, and guess what...there were hi-lights all over the place, notes in the margin IN MY HANDWRITING.  I did not remember reading ANY of the material.  It was literally like trying to pull something from a black hole because I seriously had no inkling of reading or writing on that chapter.  Needless to say, I bombed that test.  It took me another hour after I was done of racking my brain and trying to remember for a vision came back that I sat on my bed and had read that chapter.

So, when I went in two weeks ago for my eval I asked the lady and later then next day the psychiatrist if they were 100% POSITIVE that I did not have Alzheimer's .   The both assured me I didn't but that it was from bipolar disorder.  The doctor went on to explain that it's called pseudo dementia so....it's like I have dementia but I don't.  Ok that makes sense. Not.  Can I get cured?  No.   I can be treated and my symptoms can improve and be controlled but there is no "cure".  I will never be free of this new label I have been slapped with.

It's a matter of trial and error.  We try a medicine and see if there is improvement, if not, we try another one or two until eventually we find a medicine or group of meds that control my symptoms and maybe make my life a bit more normal.

I am struggling in college something fierce but I'm passing.  I am not sure what I will do next semester.  Maybe only half time.  Work that would have taken me an hour or so in the past is not taking me HOURS to complete and even then it's not up to MY standards of what it should be.

I guess I am getting a glimpse into what my ADHD stepson and ADD daughter have had to deal with all their lives and quite frankly, I don't like it.  My thoughts are all over the place, I'm like Kait...oh there's a butterfly, in her thoughts and conversations. (love you Kait!)  I can't remember from one minute to the next what I was doing.  I actually forgot I was watching TV with Emily yesterday!  I got up to go to the bathroom then for some reason went and started reading in one of my school books and Em hollered "are you coming back so I can start this back?" -- I had to ask her what we had been watching!!!  I'm like this all the time.  I hate it.  It's annoying to say the least.

So, that's what has been going on in my life.  That's why I haven't been blogging.  I forgot to.  Or I started to and then I made bread....who knows.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Where Can You Get Help In Times of Distress


UPDATE: 9/2014  I did not realize that when microsoft changed from skydrive to onedrive they changed my links to folders:  here is where you can access my notes:   Theocratic Notes


I have posted my notes to the above titled public talk to a public ONENOTE folder if you would be interested in reading them they can be found here.  My plan is to use the site to put study notes, convention notes, public talk notes etc. to save for my own use but if you would enjoy reading my notes you are more than welcome.  
I take a note book with me to all meetings and if I am able (I have a 16 month old) I take notes.  I try to transcribe them to the computer within a few hours of getting home to make sure I can remember what I abbreviated certain things for.  Smile

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

DSC04173

To See Other Wordless Wednesday Posts: Wordless Wednesday
(his toy box, which housed pans when we moved)

Friday, August 13, 2010

Windows Live Writer

I compose most all of my posts in Windows Live Writer.  I have used this program for a couple of years.  It is extremely easy to set up and has a TON of great features.  I am going to share a few of my favorites today so you can see how the program could help you in your blog writing.

The main thing I adore about it is it will pull in your current theme so you can see how your post will actually look on your site.  You can change to a ton of different fonts and be able to see exactly what your post will appear like. 

Here is what live writer looks like as I am composing this post.

live_writer_editing_

See at the bottom the tabs.  I am on the EDIT tab.  If I click to Preview tab you will see this:

2010-08-13_1109

See how my adds on the side show (and if I had scrolled up you would see my banner) this lets me see that my photos are set correctly.  I know for my blog a photo should be 495/265 pixels and I can custom set that in live writer so it doesn’t bleed over to my adds.  Smile 

Here is what the picture edit toolbar will look like.

2010-08-13_1111

Other great features:

  • I can add videos and pictures.
  • I can use the same live writer for several blog account and just click the drop down menu for which blog I want to post to.
  • I can hi-light a list I have made to add cute bullets

I can insert a map easily:

Map picture

 

This happens to be of where I grew up and took less than 10 seconds to stick in here. Smile

There are plugins you can add for facebook, mp3’s etc.

Trust me.  You will LOVE this program for your blogging!  I probably haven’t even hit the tip of the iceburg for all it’s great features. (I know I haven’t I forgot the insert table feature)

So, go ahead and download Window Live Writer you will love it and it’s FREE!

Let me know what you think.

 

 


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Thursday, August 12, 2010

Site Sharing…

Here is a website I adore.  You will find recipes, photography tips and tricks, Photoshop tutorials, a love story, you can get lost here for hours. Literally.
Pioneer Woman ok, this is not exactly how is sounds.  Ree Drummond is a city girl turned ranchers wife who started a “little” blog and has now become a very busy woman.  Her blog is amazing, her photography extraordinary and her cook book… fantastic.  The photography inside will make you drool.  

I will share another site or ten in a day or three.  Are there any sites that you love to visit?  That brighten your day?

I should also mention that she has absolutely amazing giveaways!  

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

12 Days till College

I was thinking of the 12 days of Christmas song when I realized I only have 12 days left until I start classes again.  The last time I started classes, two years ago, I wasn’t at all nervous.  Now, I am a wee bit worried. 
Instead of going for the generic ‘business administration’ degree I had started to pursue I am going to school for a degree in Health Information Technology and Management.  I will learn a ton of stuff all medical related and that is what scares me.  All those medical terms flying at me. 
I also found out that I have to take two more college math classes even though they are not towards my degree.  They are required if you are on financial aid.  So, government, thanks for that.  I have to take EXTRA classes that you have to pay for… make a WHOOOOOLLLLLEEEE lotta sense. 
I am also nervous because, of all the time to have issues, my van is having issues now.  We have two vehicles we have to have fixed by the 23rd and zilch in the form of money to fix them. --- Deep breath. 
I have been taking many deep breaths the last week.  I keep reciting my husband’s favorite mantra “it’ll be a’ight'”  (ya, he’s a little bit southern).
I think I have finally gotten my schedule set up fairly well.  I will only need a sitter two days a week and that will be for only about an hour and a half until hubby gets home from work.  If they let him switch to hourly I will only need a sitter 1 day a week.  Next semester, if my wonderful, lovely, beautiful, caring daughter (yup..I know she’s reading this and that kind of thing works on us parents so I’m going to try it) is not working maybe I will be able to pile all my classes into one long day and she can babysit her brother since she doesn’t live far from the college.  I had thought I might be able to do that this semester since my husband doesn’t work Friday’s and the school offers Saturday classes but the program I am going for offers NO classes on Fridays OR Saturdays!  (I do have one Saturday class and it’s algebra…yikes.  I knew better than to think I could teach myself that stuff!)
So, for the next 12 days I am going to be doing things around here to try and get my house and my mind in study mode.  I have set up an area for Emily and I to study.  Here are some pics.  Generally Emily’s laptop is at the other end of the table but she is visiting her dad for a few days. 
DSC04123

(yes, I’m addicted to lamps.  I like a lot of light)
DSC04124

This area in our house in the realtors mind is a “dining room”.  Uh no… there is just too much carpet under my feet for that to be an area for dining.  We eat in the breakfast area on our other table.  This has become our ‘study’.  It will work wonderful for me as I can be out here studying and keeping an eye on my wonderful son who can climb anywhere now.
Other goals:
  • Have my menu plan and shopping lists ready for the next month.
  • Have laundry done and put up.  A load a day keeps mount washmore away.
  • Take out all Aiden’s clothes and sort and put back in by outfits (this is for daddy’s benefit) – I need to do this anyways, the child has grown 1 3/4 inches in a month!!
  • Get a daily schedule figured out.
I’m sure there will be more I need to get done before then but those are the main ones.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Shhhh….

 

Finally, my lil guy is sleeping.  After his big brother and his girlfriend left at 2:45 he laid right down and went to sleep.

DSC04095

If my mother were down here (she lives in New York state) she would be shaking her head and tsk tsking me and under her breath be muttering “that boy ain’t gonna sleep tonight”.

Just the thought of that makes me chuckle.

I’m so glad he is getting much needed rest.  He was up at five this a.m. and pretty much miserable until around noon.  Then he took a quick nap and got up and ate.

Check out this handsome blue-eyed boy that visited me the other day:

DSC04090

That is my grandson Jax for those of you that haven’t “met” him yet. 

Emily is off to her dad’s for a few days.  I think it’s the first time in years, at least it seems like it.  She is going to go to the beach and relax a bit before the craziness of her senior year starts.

It’s hard not to think of her as my baby because she has been my ‘baby’ for so long.  I still catch myself saying “my baby is going to be a senior” but with Aiden’s arrival I have a few years before that happens.  (unless, of couse, he turns out to be some brilliant child prodigy and graduates at 10 years old)

Sorry, no clever title today…

 

My lil guy isn’t feeling all that great.  He has his first ear infection.  We caught it early but that hasn’t really helped him feel better yet.  His temp is still up and he just feels yucky.  He is loving being held and cuddled to help him feel better and even though I did nothing yesterday other than take him to the doc and hold and cuddle him it was a good day.

When daddy got home he got some cuddle time with him too.  If I had something I had to do during the day his bubba or sissy cuddled with him. 

I have to admit I love all the extra snuggles from my very busy little boy but I truly can’t wait until I get this back:

Sunday, August 8, 2010

I don’t particularly care for lemonade!

 

They say when life give you lemons to make lemonade.  I don’t like lemonade so what to hell good is that going to do me?

Can you tell I’m having a bad day,ok week..ok month.

My van is now acting up.  Finally got classes settled and now my only wheels to get there might not be drivable!  What in the world!  Our little car has been broke for a year.  Finally found someone to fix it at a reasonable price but have to have money for parts to get it fixed. Once I’m in class I’ll have a financial aid refund but that is two weeks past the start of school.   Lew’s car is broke down so I am his transportation.  Em’s truck blew the radiator AND the head gasket yesterday.

Life is about to get very very very crazy.

Nuff said….

Any one have any chocolate?

Friday, August 6, 2010

Southwestern Shepherd's Pie

I like shepherd's pie once in awhile.  Hubby isn't a great big fan of it.  I had been wanting some for awhile now and had been toying with the idea of making it with taco seasoning in the meat.  I mentioned this to my son, who has gotten pretty good and concocting dishes like his mother and he said "you know, it might be good with fajita seasoning."

First I peeled and boiled about 3 lbs of potatoes and made mashed tatters.  I used some sour cream when I whipped them up. (I also add a chunk of onion to the potatoes when I boil them, adds a nice subtle flavor)

1 1/2 lbs of ground london broil (it was on sale a couple weeks ago bogo and I had some ground..super lean ground beef for 2.49 a lb.   heck yes).
2 Medium Sweet Onions
1 Lg. green pepper and or red pepper (I generally use both)

I browned the ground beef and then added chopped onions and peppers.  The meat was so lean I didn't even have to drain it.

I put the fajita seasoning pack (we prefer Old El paso brand) into 1/2 c. of water and stirred then poured over the meat and let it simmer for awhile.  (I also added 3 tbs of taco sauce... )

Grease a 13x9 pan.  Put meat in bottom.  Top meat with your fav cheese.  (I use Monterrey jack ) then I added two cans of whole corn drained.
Add another layer of cheese (my layers of cheese weren't all that thick)
Then layer on your potatoes.
You can spray the top with your fav. butter spray or just top with some dabs of butter.

I baked for about 10 min and then turned the broiler on for about 5.

This was a HUGE hit even with hubby.  There is none left.  The kids had some when they got home from work and the rest was eaten for lunch today.

This will definitely be added to our menu plan.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

College is givin' me gray hair... & Office 2010

Spent LITERALLY all day trying to get registered. So frustrated with College of Central FL that I am going to use my other option and go to Santa Fe in Gainesville. I think it will be a much better option any way. So, I went on Santa Fe online and tried to register and it says I need prerequisites which are not at all listed on the print outs I have. So, Friday I will be taking a trip there to get things straight with them.

Talked with a wonderful lady today from Microsoft (more on that later on...like in a few weeks...maybe) but she gave me a great tip which I am going to share with you. I was telling her that I edit my photos in Picnik (I'm addicted) she recommend trying to edit them in Microsoft Office Powerpoint. Powerpoint!!!!! Seriously?? So she tells me all the things I can do and as soon as I can kick my son off my laptop (2010 is on my laptop) I am going to try it. If it turns out as great as she tells me.... you will see the results posted here.

My daughter came for a visit this afternoon with my wonderful grandsons. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly the grow! In just the last few weeks Colby has taken off with his verbal skills and had us all laughing at some of the things he said tonight and Jaxson... well I can't say too much about those great big blue eyes of his and that huge grin. It will be hard to tell him no. Ever. So, all I can say is I am thankful I am his nanny because I don't HAVE to tell him no!

Here are a couple of pictures to prove to you that I have a legitimate reason to not say no to these precious boys:


See, I'd win the arguement in any court of law.   It doesn't show in Jax's picture but he has one little curl right on top of his head, which makes my arguement even stronger!

Don't forget to check out the new blog at:  http://www.chaptertag.blogspot.com/ we need more people willing to have some fun so our story can go some where.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

New Blog and College Update

Today I took my CPT (College Placement Test) which was requried for me to register for classes. I only had to take the Reading Comprehension and Sentence Structure. I scored a 99 and a 89. No worries there. Now after a 24 hour wait for them to go into the computer I can then register for classes. If they aren't all full!

The process of getting into college is much more difficult that the classes once you finally get to that point!

I started another blog last week that some of my readers might be interested in. It's called Chapter Tag. It's basically a game of tag played with the written word.

I wrote chapter one and posted it. From the commentors a random person will be chosen to write chapter two...and take the story and characters where he or she wants. The rules are listed on the site. Chapter Tag under the rules tag. Since we are just getting started and commenting is slow b/c people are being SHY out there I am going to leave the comments open for more than 24 hours. Also to those I talked to before I changed 24 hour turn around for writing to 48. I am open to suggestions and would love to hear your comments about my new blog! Please do not be afraid to comment with ideas on the story either. If you read the rules you will see there is an "out" if your hands are truly shaking to hard to type the next chapter!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Pancakes Like IHOP

 

I have tried many different recipes from online that claim to be like IHOP having several misses and finally with a bit of tweaking a hit!

DSC04395

The recipe calls for buttermilk.  This is IMPORTANT.  Since I do not regularly keep buttermilk on hand (I probably should I make pancakes now a couple times a week) I do know the old trick for when you are out.

Before you begin your recipe if you have no buttermilk put 1 1/4 c. of WHOLE milk into a cup.  Add 2 tsp. of white vinegar to the milk and let set for at least 10 minutes.  Don’t worry you will not taste the vinegar at all in the pancakes.

One batch makes enough for about four people.  Unless you have teenage sons.  If you have teenagers I suggest you double it. I have also made large batches of these during the school year and froze. To freeze them you want to freeze in a single layer first for about and hour then it’s safe to throw them all in a freezer bag.  My kids will pull them out in the morning and pop in the micro or toaster or I’ll use them as the bread to make my super fast Less than Three Minute breakfast Sandwich.

 

1 1/4 c. all purpose flour – sifted 1 egg
1/4 c. sugar 1 1/4 c. buttermilk
1/8 tsp. salt (aka a pinch) 1/4 c. cooking oil
1 heaping tsp baking powder  
1 tsp baking soda      

Put all dry ingredients together and whisk.  Add wet ingredients and whisk until semi-smooth.  This batter should be thinner than you are normally used to for pancake batter.  I find I may have to add a couple more splashes of milk to get it the right consistency. Cook on a hot griddle and enjoy!

My hubby and kids eat their pancakes covered w/peanut butter and maple syrup, how do you enjoy pancakes in your neck of the woods?


Thursday, July 29, 2010

Twitter Hop Thursday - Find some Followers

Welcome to Twitter Hop Thursday, hosted by Simply StacieThe King’s Court IV, Little Yaya’s, and Review Retreat!
Would you like more Twitter followers and be introduced to more neat blogs and businesses out there? Come and join us!!
1. Add your Twitter to the MckLinky (you only have to add it to one and it will appear on all).
2. Click on the Twitter for the four hostesses and follow each of them on Twitter. We will follow you back.
3. Follow as many people on Twitter as you like, but make sure to leave comments with links so they’ll know where to follow you!
Spread the word and add this MckLinky to your blog! Write your own post or copy and paste this one. Below the MckLinky box, you’ll see “Want to be a part of this Blog Hop? Click here for instructions and code….” Have fun Twitter-Hopping along!
We have selected a Twitterer of the Week from last week’s entries and the lucky winner is Having A Blessed Life!! They will be in the #5 spot! We will choose next week’s winner from everyone who participated today.
Please only add your Twitter url. All other entries will be deleted. Thank you!!!
This is a Blog Hop! 69  entries so far... you're next!

Join The Fun

Later today or tomorrow I will be posting the first chapter at my new blog called Chapter Tag.

The idea of Chapter Tags came to me several months ago during a brainstorming session and I talked it over with my best friend and she thought it would be great fun.  (ok, we are a bit nerdy)  Lately my daughter and niece have all started  blogging and sharing their love of writing.  I hadn't really given my blog idea much more thought after the initial conversation with my best friend until yesterday.  The idea came back and wouldn't leave so I started mulling the idea over and putting some things down on papers.  Within minutes I knew that each person would be doing a different chapter and the name Chapter Tag popped into my head.  The more I thought about things and wrote down rules the more excited I got.

I shared my excitement with my daughter and one niece.  My daughter didn't seem overly enthused as she was in class at the time chatting away with us while also taking notes.  My niece however seemed to like the idea as did another niece I spoke with later that night.

So, to see the rules and how things are going to work CLICK HERE

I would love to hear your feed back either here in my comments section or under the welcome post @ Chapter Tag  Please don't forget to follow Chapter Tag!

Thanks!!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Slow Sunday

I am just puttering around today.  So far I have cleaned off a major hotspot (see Flylady's site for the definition of hotspot )  in our house.  The bar in the kitchen.  This is the area that everyone dumps their stuff.  I cleared off two flashlights, a box of Q-Tips, an unopened can of soda, three candles, numerous receipts, a knife with peanut butter on it, (thanks honey for that), a hot mat, several salt and pepper shakers (some that belonged by the stove and some that belonged on the table), and more junk that didn’t belong there.  Our bar is meant to be a breakfast bar but as it is quite tall and I am quite short so we never purchased any barstools to use.  Once that was done I started a load of dish rags and towels, my son’s laundry is in the dryer and I started a loaf bread in the bread maker.

The bread maker I am using was bought at a  yard sale for five bucks.  It was brand new, the girl had never used it and it had all the paperwork with it.  I tried to make several loaves in this bread maker after I first got it and got frustrated with it.  All bread makers are a bit different.  My one bread maker I had for years did take me awhile to get used to, to figure out which recipe worked best but I just got frustrated with trying with the “new to me” bread maker and shelved it.  So, time to try again.  I followed the recipe to a “t” so we shall see.  My old bread maker called for you to put the yeast into the water and letting it set for five minutes.  This recipe does not want your yeast to touch your wet ingredients at all until the machine does it during mixing.  Hubby keeps going over and looking into it.  I told him he can’t eat a lot of it.  I was out of wheat flour so it’s white bread and he’s diabetic so he has to be careful.  (update:  the bread looked awesome… was rising wonderful and just like the last few times with this same machine…45 min. till it was done it fell… UGH)

So, here is a photo of what my wonderful bread did:

DSC04270

And once out of the pan it looks like this:

DSC04273

Yup!  I made a loaf of bread that looks like a molar!  So, instead of calling this a fail I shall say I did it in honor of National Dental Hygeine Week…… whenever that is.

I have also made four loaves of banana bread.  It is a recipe I found online and saved to my ZIPLIST RECIPE BOX I told you about zip list in a previous post HERE I love the convenience of the recipe zipper/snipper thing a ma bob. Not only does it save a recipe for you but the link to what site you found it on.  So, here is the link to the BEST BANANA BREAD I have ever made.  Seriously, it’s better than the Amish recipe I used to use.  Make sure to read the whole recipe first and follow it exactly.  Not sure why those odd little steps and dirtying a couple extra bowls helps but it does and it is soooo worth it!

It has been kind of overcast here today but now the sun is shining.  My banana bread is making the house smell wonderful and I am trying to figure out just what I want to make for dinner.  Having our son here from out of state and Lew bring home some awesome pork tenderloin that he got at a screaming deal kind of threw my menu plan out the window this week.  But man was that tenderloin divine! Especially the one he grilled…I told him to make sure he watches for those great deals again because now we are spoiled and who wants fatty pulled pork when you can have it from a tenderloin?

So… dinner… the decision has been made… open face hot pork sandwiches with mashed tatter. 

Off to cook and maybe… attempt another loaf of molar bread!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Higher Education….

 

So, today I decided to call the college and see where I stood.

Central_Florida_CC_Patriots 

A little background:  two years ago I started college for the first time.  At age 39.  (I took a wee lil break after high school)   A month after started I found out I was expecting…very unexpectedly.  (since we had been told we wouldn’t be having more children)  I had some complications and was put on bed rest.  Three of my four professors were awesome.  I did most of my work from the internet.  I had to go into my math class only for tests.  The fourth professor though… well, lets just say he really thought a lot of himself.  According to him “there would be no way you would pass my class with out attending my lectures.”  So, I had to drop that class.  Which meant I owed back the money to the school.  Which they wanted in two weeks. (ha ha ha). 

After two weeks they sent me to collections.  The collection people called and asked me for a payment.  I told them I had no problem what so ever paying them $30.00/month because at that time that was all I had to spare.  (actually, I really didn’t have that to spare).  No worry though.  The rude person on the other end refused my $30.00!!  They said they needed 67 and some change, no if's ands or buts.  I said “so, you are refusing my money?”  When they said “we can not accept less than 67”  I said “Ok, well thanks for calling” and hung up.

I let a few months go by of them calling and me not answering.  Finally I answered one day, prepared for the same rude Neanderthal on the other end but it was a very nice lady named Shan.  I explained to her that I had offered payment and they had refused to set it up for the lesser amount.  She had no problem setting up my monthly payment of $30.  So, for many months I have been paying down this debt but still had a hunk left.  I could not reenter college with out getting this paid off.

Skip to yesterday.  I paid it off.   I want to get in school next month.  Time is of the essence.  I asked Shan if the school would be notified immediately.  She said no, notices only go out at the end of the month but to call the school because sometimes they will take a printout from the website.

So, today I called the college.  Explained the situation.  The nice lady on the other end informed me she would make a call and verify it was paid in full and lift the hold on my registering.  Sigh of relief… then she said “but”… “you have to be pre paid for the next two semesters, how do you intend to pay?”  I informed her I already had my financial aid award letter from them and that would cover me both semesters and then some.  She then said something that made me wonder about these institutions of higher learning… “before I can lift your  hold you have to bring your award letter in here for me to see.”

Seriously?  I seriously have to drive 45 minutes to show you a letter YOUR school SENT to ME????  Ok, I had other things I needed to complete there any how so I started gathering paperwork.  A trip two weeks ago gave me a re-entry form and an affidavit of Florida residency, which the gentleman informed me I had to SHOW two of the listed items as proof of residency.  As we recently have moved finding those items with the new address had me in a tizzy today (wow…tizzy is a real word! spell check didn’t red line me…) back to the story at hand…I gathered all my paperwork and out the door I went at 4 p.m.  They close at 6. 

I got to the cash office to show them the letter they sent me.  The girl informed me. “Ok, you have to do this same thing next semester too.  Your hold is lifted until Monday in the system so you have all weekend to register for classes”.  Sigh of relief on my part…. THEN… I went across the hall to turn in my re-entry form and affidavit.

First the guy informed me I needed to fill out more info.  I don’t vote so I can’t give him what he wants there.  I then hand the form back with the proofs the said were required.  You know, the ones I went into a tizzy finding today.  He shoved them back at me and said “I don’t need that.”   Deep breath.   “I was told to bring these you needed them.” 

“No, I don’t”.   ( I’m sure they’ll call next week and ask me to drive those papers out there)

He staples the two papers together and says “Ok, these should be processed in a week for you to register”

Yikes.  Here we go again.  I explained I had the weekend to register until my hold went back on.  “Get in line and see an advisor”

So…. after a 20 minute wait I get to the advisor.  She informs me I indeed have to wait the week.  Then pulls up my records to inform me: “if you had come in four days ago you would not have to take your CPT again but since you did not you have to take the English part again.  Wow!  You scored excellent on it last time.”

So…. then I had to go to the testing center to get an appointment on August 3rd to retake my CPT.  Oh, and since it is more than two years old for financial purposes it is no longer considered a “retake” and I have to pay the regular $10 fee instead of the reduced $5 fee for “retakes”.  

No wonder people say college is hard!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Everyone needs an Alice… Alice.com that is…

I have written about Alice before.  I love Alice.com!  Free shipping.  Sign up bonus and prices generally the same as or cheaper than local stores.  When you figure in the cost of gas to get to your store you end up saving money by shopping from home!

They pack stuff in really sturdy boxes.  If you buy liquids they are packed within sealed zip top bags so no leakage on other products.  They have money savings coupons on their site.  You can set up for product reminders so that once a month you are reminded to re-order your favorite items.  (or however frequently you use them).

Check out Alice.  Cilck the banner above to get a $10 sign up bonus!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Semi-busy day...

Well, I accomplished a few things today but now all I set out to accomplish. 

Apparently Aiden is teething and was just having a ‘Mommy hold me’ kind of day.  Sometimes I start to get frustrated when he is like that…then, I take a deep breath and realize that my other kids are all older and way past that stage. (they are in their late teens/early 20’s) So, I put whatever I was working on off to one side and hold my baby.

So, laundry did not get finished.  I got my small book case moved and the books around.  Got the floor vacuumed and dinner cooked.  Did manage a trip to $ general and dropped Em and work and picked her back up.  So, it wasn’t TOOOO bad.

I almost got our study table cleaned totally off.  I will try to finish that first thing in the a.m. if Aiden is still asleep when I get up.

DSC04082My son showing his “Driver” temper.  Smile

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Firsts

Since my son was born almost 14 months ago (yikes!).  We have been through many firsts.  Rolling over, walking, first tooth.

This past Friday he had two firsts in one day.  His first Happy Meal @ McDonalds and his first hair cut.

 

 

Then it was onto the hair cut.  At first I was a bit upset that they charged $11 to trim up my son’s hair.  But after wards I tipped her pretty good because sitting still was not on his agenda for the day!

 

 

As you can see the woman had to have major patience to deal with my very busy son!  Now he looks all grown up.  I did pretty good.  I didn’t cry.  I get points for that right?

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