Archive for July, 2007

That Darn Proverbs Woman

July 28, 2007

Been reading Proverbs this month and you know what?  Some days I really don’t like “that” woman.  She has been this daunting image in my mind this week of all the things I don’t feel I  am living up to.  Due to homeschooling preparations, I have been organizing and reorganizing everything!  That process allows quite a bit of reflection opportunites for all that has been lacking and all the areas I have not been diligent in.  Topping the list were ineffecient meal planning and eating our money!  The number one way for me to be a better steward of our families finances is to cook smart and eat out less.  We do eat at home on average 5 out of seven nights but then there are a couple of lunches out and crazy weeks and next thing you know…hundreds of dollars down the drain.

Brooke and I were discussing this yesterday and she told me about a clip she saw on Sonoran Living (an AZ show) yesterday advertising a website based out of AZ called www.couponsense.com.

This site is pretty awesome.  Membership is $15.00 a month (first trial month is $4.00) but theoretically you save so much it’s worth the membership fee.  This site manages ALL the grocery store adds at my local stores AND tells you were all the applicable coupons are on the web, in the Sunday paper, and on the in store adds.  They suggest you buy an A to Z accordian file for filing adds and coupons by week.  They label their weeks A through Z and then number the coupons by where they can be found.  This way, you just file the whole Sunday coupon/advertisment section in the applicable letter file and then wait to cut anything out until you need it.  They allow a multiple of sorts and searches, send you alerts on products you select, show you what final prices will be after sales ads and coupons (single, doubled and tripled), and allow you to make out your shopping list online dragging and dropping from sales adds.  You then print your report and you know what you need to buy at each store you choose to shop at (you set your stores up in the settings).  They also have an “add match” report just for Walmart since Walmart matches everyones adds.  The advertisements are saying that many women are saving 50 to 75% of their monthly bills doing this!!!!  Wow!  Here are my pro’s and con’s on this:

Con’s:

* To make this most effective, I need to make my meal plan AFTER checking out what the best ads are for the week.  That is time consuming and limiting.

* In some cases, I may shop different name brands than usual to make good use of the ad/coupon.  That would only be beneficial to me in some cases.  In others, I am very brand specific.

* Time consuming process.

* If you want to make use of double/triple coupons, it requires shopping Fry’s/Safeway/Bashas.  Walmart doesn’t double and I typically shop Walmart for most stuff (though not all).

* If I am going to pay for a Sunday paper and this 15.00 service, I HAVE to make use of it to make it worth it.  I would need to save a significant amount over my expenses to makeup for my time. 

Pro’s:

* I would be a better steward of my family finances.

* I shop more than one store anyhow because I don’t like meat from Walmart.

* IF IF IF I was good at this, I could save a KILLING.  I can’t believe the savings women on this site are reporting.  I would have to try it to believe it but what if???

* During homeschool table time, when Tanner is working on excercises, it would be a perfect time for me to surf the site, check out the adds, create my meal plan, and clip appropriate coupons and print sales adds.  They make it very simple by putting it all together.  Would be an awesome use of my “down” time and would keep me from wandering away from Tanner and getting involved in a task that would interupt school time.  This could be done piece by piece as time allowed so I think it would work well.

* I would be happy happy happy if I were good at it and I was saving a lot of money.  If I could save $100.00 per month or more, it would be like I made our money work for itself without having to take a side job:).  Managing coupons and sales adds may be a “job” of sorts but depending on what it “made” me, it might be well worth a couple hour time investment.

They have workshops where they give you a manual and teach you how to best use their website.  Brooke and I and maybe Belinda are going to attend on August 7th at 7:15.  I went ahead and joined and I’ll get a Sunday paper tomorrow but I think it will take some time to build up my coupon stock to save BIG money:).  Too fun though to see women buying 200.00 worth of groceries and paying 20.00 bucks!!!  Darin, my brother, who is a Sales Manager for the AZ Republic, told me today that he has met several women that were buying 3 or 4 Sunday Papers because they were www.couponsense.com members and they were making a killing with all their savings.  That was encouraging to hear.

What ‘s the worst that could happen?  I would just quit the membership if I couldn’t do it or if it didn’t save me much.  I am actually excited about giving it a shot.  I think it’s at least theoretically possible that the challenge of it would motivate me and I would find it actually FUN to see how little I could get away with spending on a grocery trip.  By the way, if you don’t live in AZ, you MIGHT still be able to utilize this tool.  They have a national program set up that costs 10.00 per month.  They charge less because I think there are less options outside AZ right now but you have to check your zipcode to see.  The site has tutorials and a lot of “advertisement” info so check it out if you are interested.

Wish me luck!

 

 

My friend Kristi and I were talking about “good reads” lately and she loaned me “The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands” by Dr. Laura.  She said she had read it several times and thought it was an awesome book.   I read her copy and I loved it as well.  I am usually a Dr. Laura fan.  Not always but often.  I used to listen to her on my way home from work all the time and sometimes I was cheering her on and sometimes I was griping at her for her harshness and arrogance.  The root of our faith is the same – Judaism.  For that reason, Dr. Laura and I agree on much.  Because I believe the Messiah has come though and embrace the New Covenant along with the Old, I live under a lot more grace than Dr. Laura does :) .  I wish she had Jesus.

While this book has a few crude words that I could have done without, the heart of the message is very good.  The book teaches that men in general are simple creatures.  NOT simple minded!  Just having fairly simple needs.  They aren’t as emotionally complicated as women.  Because of this, most men have a top 3 that is pretty common that when fulfilled, you keep a pretty happy man.  I quizzed Jim on this to see if Dr. Laura was correct.  I asked him what his top 3 basic needs were (in respect to marriage) and he was pretty much spot on with Dr. Laura.  What are those three needs?  I am not quoting her but essentially 1. Respect 2. Intimacy 3.  Food.  Jim actually answered “Respect, Love, and Sex” but I know first hand that “Food” should have been one of his top 3.  I have noticed over the years that if I don’t have a dinner plan, OR if I ask him what he wants instead of making decisions, it’s the surest way to have a grumpy man on my hands.  My grandmother used to throw an onion in the skillet when my grandfather got home just so it smelled like she had it already worked out LOL.  I do think that most men come in the door with a brighter smile when they smell their dinner.  Most of us women wish this wasn’t true because cooking isn’t our favorite past time – but alas…it is.  (Lucky for me I actually do like cooking most days so it isn’t too bad). 

Dr. Laura also addresses protector/conqueror tendencies.  This was relevant to me because my dad has taught on that for years.  In fact, the majority of this book was a compilation of what my parents have taught and modeled for me the last 34 years.  My mother should have been the model for the front cover – no kidding.  She is a tough act to follow.  I think the reason I loved the book so much is because I have seen the principles applied in my parents marriage and they are still two little love birds….over 30 years, 5 kids, and 8 grandkids later.  That says something.

Anyhow, if I stirred your interest, you can order this book for under $5.00 on www.half.com.  I think every woman should own a copy. 

P.S. Christine – I already ordered your copy.  Kat – Kristi is buying your copy.  Kristi and I think this is a “must have” for new brides :)

At the ripe age of THREE, Ty was in his first car accident for which he was ENTIRELY responsible.

Friday nights are family nights and we usually all gather at Papa’s and Sweetie’s or Aunt Beck’s.  Last night we were laughing about the line in “Fools Rush In” – all their family is gathered and one member say’s (much to Matt Perry’s amazement) “looks like not everyone could make it tonight” :) .  Last night’s family list was: Papa, Sweetie, Grammy, Uncle Dave, Aunt Beck, Jamie, Jarrod, Jenna, Rhonda, Greg, Macayla, a friend of Jamie’s, Aviel, Jim, Doni, Tanner, Ty, Daniel, Brooke, Noah, Graham, Braxytn, David, Aimee, Zandi, Zane, Darin, Jodi, Karsyn, Dustin, Michelle, Rob and Cat = Total – 33 of us at mom’s.

I post that list to offer explanation as to how easy it is to lose one’s child at these family gatherings.

The kids were scattered all over and after a bit, I realized I didn’t know where Ty was.  I looked outside and couldn’t find him.  Looked inside and couldn’t find him.  Started asking everyone if they had seen him – no one had.  Uh oh. 

All of a sudden, Sweetie screams “HE IS IN THE GOLF CART” – (she could see him out the window from the dining room).  She throws her coke down and starts running with me at her heels.

When we got outside, there was a huge crash.  David and Greg were already running for him.  The key had been left in the golf cart and Ty turned the cart on, put it in reverse and put the pedal to the metal.  In doing so, he slammed into Michelle’s car.  The picture below is a later recreation by Papa.

Ty actually put a dent in her bumper and scratched her car so we now owe Michelle for damages.

The worst thing about this accident though is what you DO NOT see in the above picture. 

The accident occurred in front of that large green bush in this picture.  If you’ll notice, there is a ravine on the left there.  That ravine is much deeper and steeper than it looks from this picture.  It goes down about 15 feet!!!!  Had Ty turned the steering wheel left as opposed to right, he would have backed the golf cart right over the ledge.  THAT is what had me in hysterics (and  everyone else).  As it was, his front driver side tire was dangerously close to the edge.  Thank the Lord that someone got to him before he threw the car into forward or he would have gone head first over the edge.

Uncle David reached him first.  He grabbed Ty, threw him out of the cart and hollered to high heaven at him (which is very unlike David).  I was so grateful because first person on that scene needed to make an impression on the little menace.  I had the words shocked right out of me.  I marched him into Sweetie’s bedroom and delivered appropriate consequences swiftly.  Then he walked out happy as a fat cat and I stayed in the room and cried.  Later I learned that Brooke and Jodi were guessing that Ty would get “over it” in typical Ty fashion within minutes and mommy would be hysterical for hours.  If they were betting women, they could have profited off that.

I still don’t feel “over it” and I have no sense of security that he wouldn’t try it again.  You can bet though, that I will be inspecting the golf cart for the key from now on.  Is it always going to be like this with this little hooligan?????????????  How will I survive it??????

Edit:  Tonight (Sat night) when Ty said his good night prayers he added – ALL ON HIS OWN – “thank you for Zandi and for me to not drive the golf cart again”.   Maybe something stuck with him after all????  :) :)

East to West

July 13, 2007

How far is the east from the west?  How far have our sins been removed from us?  From “one nail scarred hand to another”.

Darin brought my attention to Casting Crown’s new song “East to West”.  It is a MUST listen to and their website is looping the entire song right now if you want to hear it (and you DO want to hear it – trust me).  This CD comes out August 28th and I can hardly wait.

 

EAST TO WEST 

 

Thinking Bout Baby

July 13, 2007

Been thinking about babies a lot lately.  I am getting really anxious to kiss and cuddle my next son or daughter.  Tiny little toes, big eyes, sweet giggles….

Infertility thoughts resurface a little bit during this stage of the “planning” process.   So many fears…too many to list.  But God has sure been faithful hasn’t He?  Even through the hard things….there have been thorns but they have never distracted from the beauty of my precious roses.   Because of this, I still feel so grateful for infertility.  

A friend recently brought my attention to Kellie Coffey’s song “I Would Die For That”.  I love Kelly Coffey!  I fell in love with her voice when she sang White Christmas for the Disney Firework display.  No better version (and I never could find it recorded anywhere either). 

 

Even though I feel healed from so much, this song still moved me.  For all the women reading this who have experienced infertility or loss of babies, I think you’ll appreciate this.

I Would Die For That