Saturday Cents

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I went to the grocery store today, as Miss C and I are heading out of town starting tomorrow.  Hubs will be all alone at home with the two dogs.  I am sure they will have a great time!

I needed to make sure that I had enough at home for Hubs to eat without forcing him to out each day and night.  He had a couple requests (pizza, mac and cheese, etc.)  Luckily I was able to score some good deals! I also spent a bit of my birthday money on a book.  It was $10.50, and I figure I will get some good reading time in these upcoming days.

I plan to go back to the store on Wednesday to get more actual food for meals.  I will start back up with cooking when I return.

Here is a breakdown of my shopping trip.  I went ahead and subtracted the amount I spent on my book, since it was not from our grocery budget.

Total budgeted: $120 (what is leftover is what I will use on Wednesday)
Total spent: $58.70
Paper coupon savings: $6.49
eCoupon savings: $4.50
Mega Event Savings (buy 5 save $5): $5.00
Sales savings: $6.12

Here are some of my best deals:

DiGiorno Frozen Pizza (x5) 
Regular price: $5.99 ($29.95)
Sale price: $4.99 ($24.95)
Mega Event: -$5.00
Total spent: $19.95
Total saved: $10.00

Plum Organic Tot Food Pouches (x2)* 
Price: $1.59 ($3.18)
eCoupon: -$1.50
Total spent: $1.68

Gerber Graduate Tot Food Pouches (x3)* 
Price: $1.53 ($4.59)
eCoupon: -$1.00
Total Spent: $3.59

Dole Squish ‘Ems 
Price: $2.79
Coupon: -$1.00
Total Spent: $1.79

Gillette Deodorant (x2) 
Regular Price: $4.45 ($8.90)
Sale Price: $3.99 ($7.98)
eCoupon: -$2.00
Total Spent: $5.98
Total Saved: $2.92

Dillon’s Brand Laundry Detergent
Regular Price: $5.99
Sale Price: $3.99
Coupon: Free Detergent -$3.99
Total Spent: $0
Total Saved: $5.99

*I typically do not buy these foods, but I had coupons, and they travel well.  We will take them in the car with us on our trip.  

Have you found any great deals this weekend?

Feeling Accomplished

Here are the to-do lists I showed you yesterday:

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I had nothing crossed off yesterday, and today there is so much crossed off (actually I highlight the things I get done because I think it looks prettier.)

Here are also a few things that I got done that weren’t on the to-do list:

Took Miss C to story time
Met up with my parents to run errands and have lunch
Went for a walk with Miss C
Folded/put away all previous clean laundry
Took out trash (as in took trash can to curb)
Destroyed 2 ant colonies (one in our mailbox and one in between stones in our back patio)
Sprayed Round-up on numerous weeds
Remembered to put flea/tick medication on the dogs
Actually did 2 loads of laundry, not just 1
Did a little bit of training with the dogs
Showered and made myself presentable enough to leave the house
Hung curtains
Loaded, unloaded, and loaded again dishwasher

So, even though I still have a number of things on my list that did not get accomplished today, I sure do feel good about how much did get done!  Tomorrow I have no plans to go anywhere.  It will be the first day this summer that we stay at home the entire day!  I hope that the weather cooperates, as I would love to get all the bedding in the house washed.  I would also like to go on a walk in the morning if it is nice out.

I will probably try to get the fridge cleaned, junk basket organized, and bathrooms cleaned during nap time, but I may just curl up and take a nap myself.  That is really what I wanted to do today, but I am happy that I resisted and got so much done.

Did you get a lot done today?

To-Do Lists

You know what I am really good at?  Making to-do lists.

You know what I am really bad at?  Getting things done on the to-do lists.

I have been really wanting this summer to be productive.  It seems as though by the time school rolls around in August, I look back over my summer and realize that I got next to nothing accomplished.  I wanted to make this year different.  It started off well.  I had gotten quite a few things done, but I have plateaued.  My motivation is lacking, and I haven’t been able to get back with it.  I know that realistically I will not get everything done that I want, but I also know that I will be hard on myself if I don’t get much done.  (It is just how I am.  I don’t know how to let it go.)

Here are my to-do lists for today and tomorrow:

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As you can see nothing has been checked off.  That is partly because I haven’t taken the time to check anything off.  The only things I can check off are “Dogs to the vet: 9:00 am” and “Lunch: Out w/ladies.”  That is it.

I had the check in my wallet to pay our utility bill, but I forgot to stop by today.  It isn’t due until the 10th, so it won’t be late or anything, but I had planned to get it done today.  I also had my check to deposit and post-it note with what I needed to get out in cash.  I did not make it to the bank.

Everything else was my laziness.  I procrastinate and procrastinate, and then at the end of the day I feel super lazy.  I don’t have a lot of time to get things done during the day, usually just during nap time, and by then I am exhausted so I just want to rest.

I will probably adjust my lists so that I do in fact get things done tomorrow.  Miss C and I will head to story time at 9:30, and then hopefully actually go to the bank.  I also plan to pay our bill tomorrow as well.  And I have to make my client disc, as I plan on seeing my client tomorrow and giving it to her.  The weather is a little uncertain, so I don’t know if I will do laundry, as I hang everything out to dry.  If the forecast looks ok, then I should get at least 1 load done.  I probably need to focus on getting all the current clean clothes folded and put away before I start washing more.

Who knows when everything else will get done.  Isn’t summer supposed to be a time to relax?  I am not feeling that way at all! I suppose I do it to myself. :)

What do your to-do lists look like?

Menu Plan Monday

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Don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten about my menu plan.  In fact menu planning has gotten twice as hard since I now have to plan lunches as well as dinners.  When it was just me, I would end up just eating a bowl of cereal or snacking through lunch.  Now that I am in charge of a little munchkin, it is important that we have well-rounded meals, including lunch.  I have been trying to incorporate more fruits and veggies into our meals lately, and I have found out that Miss C is a fruit monster.  She loves it!

It has been a while since I have done a menu plan, so let me review how it goes.  Since I go to the farmer’s market on Saturdays and grocery store on Sundays, I usually plan my meals on Friday nights.  That way I can know what fruits and veggies I need from the farmer’s market.  Then whatever I don’t find at the farmer’s market, I can still put on my grocery store list.  My meal plan starts on Sunday at lunch and ends Saturday at dinner.  Since Hubs works late on Saturdays (noon until 10:00 pm), Miss C and I plan to meet him for dinner out those nights.  It is much easier than trying to cook a meal with a toddler during witching hour.  I have budgeted $20 a week for those meals out.  It is a lot, but considering Hubs doesn’t get to see the little one much on Saturdays, it is a nice break for him and a chance for us to be together as a family.

Now on to the menu:

Sunday, June 1:
Lunch: Homemade mac and cheese (with broccoli), cut up hot dogs, fruit salad
Dinner: Spaghetti, corn on the cob, bread

Monday, June 2: 
Lunch: Out for my birthday
Dinner: BBQ chicken tenders, corn on the cob, fruit salad, bread

Tuesday, June 3:
Lunch: Out with friends
Dinner: Homemade margherita pizza, salad

Wednesday, June 4:
Lunch: Chicken salad sandwich, fruit salad
Dinner: Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken, green beans

Thursday, June 5: 
Lunch: Turkey sandwiches, leftover green beans, strawberries
Dinner: Smothered beef burritos, mixed veggies

Friday, June 6:
Lunch: Out with a friend
Dinner: Breakfast for dinner: pancakes, hash browns, fruit salad, sausage links, eggs

Saturday, June 7:
Lunch: Deli sandwiches, raw veggies, fruit salad
Dinner: Out with Hubs

The times you see that I am going out with friends, that money will come from my MAD money/birthday money.  It will not come from our budget, as it is just something I am doing and not something the whole family is doing.  I have gone out to eat with friends last week and this week, and I think I may have to pause on lunches out for a couple weeks.  It is starting to drain my MAD money, which I don’t want to use up completely.

What is on your menu for the week?

Sunday Cents on Monday

It’s my birthday!  I need to update my “About Miss Jessie” as I am no longer a 20-something!  I have started a new decade today, and I sure hope it is a good decade.  My 20s brought about a lot of wonderful things: a husband, two dogs, a daughter, a house, a job, a graduation from college.  But they also brought many sad times: two miscarriages, the deaths of my grandfather, sorority sister, great aunt, husband’s grandfather.  My 20s allowed me to grow so much and learn so much about myself.  I hope that my 30s allow me to become comfortable in my skin and bring about a self-confidence that I was lacking through the past decade.

For my birthday, we enjoyed some free fun at a nearby farmstead.  Here is my darling girl feeding some goats there:

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It was her favorite part!  After our fun there, my parents took us out for lunch.  We ate at a steakhouse, but had to cut our lunch short as there was a very exhausted, worn out toddler who was in desperate need of a nap.

We came home and the whole family took a nap. (In fact I think the other two members of the family are still snoozing.)  I can’t imagine a more perfect way to spend my birthday!

Now on to the good, bad, and ugly of the budget from this past weekend.

The Good
I finally sat down and got the budget under control.  I had somewhat ignored it and put it off during the end of April and May.  I now have it down on paper and feel better that I have a plan for our money and have an idea of where it is going.

We still have an ok amount in our savings. We had to use some of our savings for paying a medical bill from our miscarriage.  I haven’t updated the sidebars to show that yet.  It didn’t drain all of our savings, but I am worried that once we get the bill from my appendectomy, it will drain it.  Luckily though, it looks like we will be able to put quite a bit into savings in July.  That should fill it back up to a more comfortable level.

The Bad
Getting back to using a cash budget is really hard.  In fact, I did not stick to it this weekend already.  I went to Target with the intention of picking up a few things for Hubs (some snacks and some new boxers).  I ended up getting a few more things for the yard (weed and feed, Round-up, and a new hose).  These items were not technically NEEDS at this point in time, but they are needs in the long run.  I ended up spending about $90 that I had not planned for.  I will readjust the budget to take these purchases into account.  This means I will not take any cash out for clothing or the house this month.

I also spent some money for the dogs.  I bought a cooling pad for them, since it has been so blasted hot lately.  Our house is south facing, so it slowly heats up all day.  By the time the sun goes down, it is at 78 (which is what I keep our thermostat set at).  If I didn’t have the a/c on, then it would easily be over 90 in our house.  We are planning to put up some curtains, but are waiting for them to be sewn (by my mom).  Since I spent $50, I will not get out as much money this month for the pups.

The Ugly
There isn’t too much that is just plain ugly at this point.  Grocery prices are ugly, that’s for sure.  I went over budget this weekend, but not by much.  The prices of about everything have gone up, and I am really trying to not adjust our grocery budget.  I am also trying to be more aware of our waste.  I don’t want our money to be thrown away because we didn’t get certain things eaten in time.

Now on to our grocery shopping trip from yesterday:

I have started going to the farmer’s market every Saturday morning to get some local fresh fruits and veggies.  I usually take whatever leftover cash I have from the previous week’s grocery trip.  This past weekend I spent $7 and got 2 heads of lettuce, 2 tomatoes, and 4 green onions.  More expensive than the grocery store, but I love taking C to the farmer’s market and supporting the local farms.

Budgeted: $120
Total Spent: $134.78
Total Saved: $27.99
Number of items I bought that were not on my list: 7

Biggest deals:

3 lb bag of frozen chicken breasts
This price has gone up from $9.99 to $10.99 recently.
On sale: $9.49
Coupon: -$1.45
Total spent: $8.04
Total saved: $2.95

Dole Fruit Cups (x2)
Regular price: $2.50 ($5.00)
On sale: $2.00 ($4.00)
Coupon: -$0.60
Total spent: $3.40
Total saved: ($1.60)

Chuck Steaks (x2)
Regular price: $7.89 and $4.87
On sale: Buy one, get one free
Coupon; -$2.00
Total spent: $5.89
Total saved: $7.87

Bananas 
Price: $0.55/lb
Spent: $0.76
Checkout 51 Rebate: $0.50
Total Spent after rebate: $0.26

Milk (x2)
Regular price: $3.54 ($7.08)
On sale: $2.99 ($5.98)
Ibotta rebate: $0.50
Total saved: $1.60
Total spent after rebate: $5.48

Cream of Chicken Soup (x3)
Regular Price: 3/$5.00
Checkout 51 Rebate: $0.25
Print out $1.00 Catalina for next grocery trip
Total Saved: $1.25

Two new apps I have started using are Checkout 51 and iBotta.  They are apps that you can upload your grocery receipt to in order to earn back rebates.  You can then cash out once you reach a specific amount of money.  I have only been using them for about 3 weeks.  I have earned $4.75 on Checkout 51 and can cash out once I reach $20.00.  And I have earned $5.25 on ibotta and can cash out when I reach $5.00.  With ibotta I can get gift cards or have it put in my pay pal account.  With Checkout 51 I can have it put in my pay pal account.  I will probably just do that with both apps.  There are more money saving apps out there that I plan on checking out this summer.

How are your finances after the weekend?

Busy Thursday

Today has been a very busy day, but don’t worry… I managed to squeeze in a nap.

Little missy really needs to learn that since it is summer vacation, we are allowed to sleep in past 6:30.  She seems to be a morning person like her momma.  This morning person would like some morning by herself, though.  Once we got up and got moving, I started a load of laundry and got breakfast served to the hungry munchkin.  While she ate, I wrapped a gift for our nephew (whose birthday was last week, but I am just now getting around to getting his gift ready for the mail).

Once she was done eating, she wouldn’t leave me alone.  I had another package I needed to get ready for the mail, but the monkey was not feeling very independent this morning.  I finally put her in her crib so I could get everything ready to go to the post office later.  Once I finished, we went outside to hang out laundry.  Most people might not think this is a big deal, but I am so excited because I got a new clothesline!  Up until this point I had just been doing super small loads and putting them on a small wooden drying rack.  It worked well when it was just Hubs and me, but now that there is a small, messy toddler involved, we need more space and the ability to do bigger loads.

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Isn’t it just beautiful?!?

Once we got laundry done, we headed out to the post office and to my parents’ house for the morning.  Unfortunately the post office did not open until 9:30, and we got there at 8:45.  I didn’t want to just hang around for 45 minutes, so I figured we would try later.

We spent the morning with my parents, and my mom, Miss C, and I went to a couple garage sales.  I spent $5: $2 on a handful of toy animals for C, and $3 on a riding/push toy to play with outside.  Once we put C on the riding toy at the garage sale, she refused to get off.  I tried to pick her up, but she held onto the handlebars and stayed in a sitting position, even as I lifted her into the air.  She made it clear that she wanted the toy (and considering we have no riding toys for, I figured $3 was a good investment).

Once back at my parents’ house, we had lunch, and then it was time to head home to get the little one down for a nap.  Well, we had quite an adventure on the way home… we got stuck behind a house on the two lane road that goes into our little town.  Yes, stuck behind a house.  I guess they were moving this house (I don’t know where they were going or where they came from), and it was the longest process ever!  There were two cherry picker trucks in front of the house (along with a string of many other vehicles whose sole job was to make all oncoming traffic pull completely off the road, either into a driveway or a side street), the house, two more cherry picker trucks, a pick-up with a sign, and then me (and a whole host of vehicles stuck behind me.)

Each time the house came to overhead electrical wires, people in the cherry picker trucks had to get out, walk over, use special tools to raise the wires so the house could go under them.  We got through 2 of these events flawlessly, but the 3rd time was not the charm.  The third time, I was watching and there were sparks involved when they tried to lower the wires back down.  This was not good.  This caused the cherry picker truck to put down it’s stabilizing legs, someone to get in the bucket, go up to the wires, and attempt to fix whatever happened.  Here it is in all of its glory:

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Literally no where to go.  We had been stopped at this point for about 15 minutes.  Poor Miss C was exhausted and ready for a nap.  She did well, and we didn’t have a meltdown which was good.  After sitting around for another 5 minutes, we finally got to moving.  Of course the house had pulled over to the side of the road to wait for the rest of its parade, and the nice workers were kind enough to let the long line of cars pass at this point so we could get on the way.

When I got into our little town there was a crowd of people waiting to take pictures of the moving house.  There were also a number of police officers waiting to escort the house through town.  I had seen enough of the house and just wanted to get home.  (The drive is typically 25 minutes, but today it took me over an hour.)

Finally at home, the little one and I took a nap.

This evening I got some work done in the flowerbeds, got the kitchen cleaned, dinner made, baby bathed, and now got my blog post done!  It has been a busy day, but at the end of a busy day, I always feel so accomplished.

Did you get much done today?

It’s Been a While

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I just checked, and it has been 24 days since I posted.  I have honestly thought about blogging every single one of those 24 days.  I have also thought about quitting this blog almost every single one of those 24 days.  I do have to admit that I miss blogging.  I miss having an outlet to get my thoughts out, and even though this is not a big time blog, nor do I really strive for it to a big time blog, I like to think that my readers enjoy it.

I have fallen off the bandwagon with a number of things since our last hurdle.  You may remember that in April I had an emergency appendectomy.  After that, things just fell by the wayside and life sped up.  Since I have last blogged, a number of things have happened.  Surprisingly most of them have been good (considering the string of bad luck we ran into, I am definitely liking the good luck much better.)  Here is a quick update:

Health
I have recovered from my appendectomy.  I still have a single, stubborn stitch in my belly button that has not dissolved.  I have had issues with stitches not dissolving in the past, so I am not surprised.  I figure I need to find a doctor to pluck it out of me.
My health otherwise is going well.  I really wanted to start working out again once school got out, but I haven’t forced myself to get out there.  The closest thing I have done is download an exercising app.

Work
School is out for the summer!  Honestly the last month of school flew by.  The weather has been wonky, so it never really felt like the end of the school year.  In fact, on the last day of school, recess was 60*F, windy, and overcast.  All the kiddos were complaining about how cold it was.  (I was too!)
Some good news is that I am moving grade levels!  I am back to 2nd grade.  I started my teaching career 7 years ago at 2nd grade.  I taught that for 2 years, moved up grades for 2 years, and then taught 1st grade for the past 3 years.  I am so excited to move back to 2nd grade!  They are older, more independent, and not tested!
Along with moving grades, I am moving classrooms.  I am moving into a retiring teacher’s room.  She is leaving a lot of goodies, so there will be a lot of organizing to get done!  I am super excited!

Photography
I am keeping my schedule pretty open right now.  Last summer I felt like I was doing a session every weekend.  I got burnt out by the end of busy season.  This year, I am not doing a lot of social media marketing, and really am just taking it slow.  I have an engagement session set up for the end of June, a sibling session for the beginning of August, and a wedding for October.  Not much, and I am completely happy with that!  I have gotten a few inquiries, but they haven’t gone anywhere.  In the past I would have been upset about it, but right now I am enjoying the relaxed, carefree summer.

Family
Little missy is growing up so fast!  She keeps me super busy and on my toes.  She loves running and yelling, and is just starting to climb on things.  She has never really been interested in climbing on anything, but now that she has learned how, she is up and down off the recliner, fireplace, and tries the couch (it is just a little too tall).
She is very skittish and shy, so my goal this summer is to take her out and about often.  I need to get her used to being around other people and in social situations.  Today we went to the library for a story time, then out to lunch with a group of friends. We also ran some errands.  She is almost completely silent the whole time we are out, then she is a yelling, chatterbox in the car on the way home.  We definitely need to get her out of her shell.

Finances
Honestly, I am planning on hammering out our June budget this evening.  I really ignored our finances for May (still paid everything on time, and all of that, just didn’t keep up with cash only, checkbook register, etc.)  It is time to get back in the saddle with this one.
I did agree to an opportunity at school to teach a new curriculum next year.  In return I will get $500.  (It will be split up in 3 payments throughout the school year and will be on Visa giftcards, but it will still be a big help!).  I also get paid for my student teacher I had this past semester.  That will be right around $100 in my June check.  The photo shoots area also extra money, so we are bringing in a bit of extra income, albeit not a whole lot.
The money will go into savings, and then will likely be used for doctor bills.  I did get a bill for my miscarriage that we had back in March, and that took a large chunk out of our savings.  I also know we will have plenty of bills to pay for my appendectomy, so we need to get our savings up for when those start to roll in.  The only plus is that we aren’t even 6 months into the year, and I believe we will have hit our deductible.  That bodes well for whatever health issues we may encounter for the rest of the year.
As of right now, I will be getting a raise next year.  It will be around $100 a month.  After taxes, I am sure it will be more like $75 a month, but that is definitely a big helper!  I think at this point we will just squirrel it away into savings once it kicks in in September.  I would like to pay extra on our debt, but I would just feel better with a bigger emergency fund right now.

I think that is a pretty full picture of how things have been going lately.  I hope all is well for you (if anyone is still reading this blog)!  I do plan to get back to a somewhat consistent schedule now that school is out.

Sunday Cents

My days seem so busy this time of year.  We are starting to wrap up our school year and the things at home are starting to pile up.  The problem is that my motivation is plummeting.  I come home from work and don’t want to do anything.  The weekends now are just teasers for what is to come.  I don’t want to get started on any major projects, as the weekend is just two days.  I find that I have no motivation to do much of anything but just spend time with the family on the weekends.  The problem with this is that our kitchen is a wreck, laundry doesn’t get done in a timely manner, and the house needs a good scrubbing.  I am hoping to hold out until summer, and then I can really get to work!

I find that blogging has fallen to the wayside, as well.  I feel as though I don’t have anything interesting to blog about right now.  I need to get back in the groove, as I do enjoy blogging.  Hopefully May will be a relaxing, almost boring month (unlike March or April), and I will get back to a regular posting schedule.  Until then, just bear with me.

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Miss C and I did go to the grocery store today.  Not many huge deals, but there were a couple decent ones.

Total Budgeted: $160 ($120 from grocery envelope, $30 from dog envelope, $10 from gift envelope)
Total Spent: $153.58
Total Saved: $29.79

The big deal at the store is the same as last week: Buy 4 participating items and get $4 off.  I was able to take advantage of this today to save us $4.00.

Here are the big deals I found:

3 lb. 85/15 ground beef
Regular price: $16.99
Sale price: $11.07
Saved: $5.92

Digiorno’s Frozen Pizza (x4)
Price: $5.99 ($29.95)
Coupons: -$2 x 2 (-$4)
Total Spent: $25.95
Extra: Catalina coupon for $3.00 off my next shopping order

Dole Apple Sauce (x2)
Regular price: $2.79
Sale price: 2/$4.00
Coupon: -$1.00
Total Spent: $3.00

Sargento String Cheese
Regular price: $5.49
Sale price: $4.49
Mega Event Savings: -$1.00
Coupon: -$0.75
Total Spent: $2.74

Hallmark Cards (5 Total, Various prices)
Regular Price: $19.35
E-coupon: -$1.50
Scanned coupon: -$3.00
Total spent: $14.85

Eggo Waffles (x2)
Regular Price: $4.69 ($9.38)
Mega Event Savings: -$2.00
Coupon: -$0.75
Total Spent: $6.63

I did also get two 4 packs of Motts Apple Sauce.  I don’t know what their regular price was, but they were on closeout for $1.88 each.  Miss C loves these pouches of squeezable applesauce, so I knew they would get used.

So there ya have it!  Nothing too fantastic, but every penny saved helps!  I need to sit down and get our May budget done.  I hope to do that this evening.  I am photographing a birthday party this afternoon from 2-4, and then will make dinner.  I hope to get the kitchen picked up and cleaned somewhat after dinner.  Then once the little one goes to bed, I will try to get it done.  I also hope to get my menu plan post written tonight and scheduled to post for tomorrow.  If I can stay one day ahead on my posts, I find I do much better!

Did you find any good deals this weekend?

Two-fer Tuesday

So I have been trying to hide from the world lately.  The past two months have just been killer.  I feel like we keep getting hit with bad news or something bad just keeps coming up.  It hasn’t stopped.  I am hoping that with a new month comes a new outlook on life.  I am no longer hoping for good or great days.  I would just like a normal, stuck-in-a-rut kind of day.

Today our baby had her 18 month appointment.  She had to get one shot and had to have blood drawn from both arms.  Hubs was with her, and from what he has described, it was a horrible experience.  I was almost in tears as he told me about having to hold her down and hold her arms straight as they drew blood.  I don’t know if I could have handled it.  I am so thankful that he has gone to her last few appointments.  I am going to start taking time off work to go to them, so he is not on his own.

Most everything is going well with the little nugget.  She is definitely little.  3rd percentile for weight, 7th percentile for height.  The doctor did think she needed to be saying more words and talking more than she is now.  I honestly am not concerned at all.  She can say about 4 words (that we can understand), but she has so many other cognitive, logical, and reasoning skills, that I know she will develop her speech when she is ready.  She can follow 1- and 2-step directions.  She can do her alphabet puzzle.  She can problem solve by mimicking someone else.  She can match pairs of shoes.  She can build with her mega-blocks.  She loves books.  I think she is working so hard on all her other skills, that her language will come when she is ready.  It is not as though she is silent.  She is rather loud at times, she just makes noise, babbles, and yells instead of trying to form words.

Aside from that, tomorrow I go back to the surgeon for my follow-up appointment.  I hope all is well.  I feel fine, and I am not terribly sore or sensitive where the incision sites are.  I guess we will find out tomorrow if I am healing well.

menu-plan-mondaySince I haven’t been keeping up with the blog, I have a few things to write about.  The first will be my menu plan for this upcoming week.  I rarely miss a menu plan Monday, but honestly, I didn’t have a menu yesterday.  During my plan time at work, I got one written out, made a grocery list, and then went grocery shopping after work.  It is a pretty simple plan:

Monday: Pasta Toss (We had everything at home to make this)
Tuesday: Chicken stir-fry
Wednesday: Baked Ravioli
Thursday: Philly Cheesesteaks
Friday: Spaghetti

I plan to go back to the grocery store on Saturday, so I haven’t worked on my plan for the weekend.  It is a pretty simple menu, which is what I need at this point in my life.

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Next I have Saturday Cents, but it’s on Tuesday.  Tuesday Cents just doesn’t sound as cool though.

First, this weekend I had Saturday to myself, so I decided to take my March Madness winnings and go shopping!  I have needed some new clothes desperately, and I was happy to buy some new ones.  I ended up only buying from a discount store and two consignment stores.  I did go into a couple big box stores and a department store, but I was appalled at the prices.  Here is the breakdown of everything I got and the prices that go with them (I paid only cash for all purchases):

Discount Store (Ross Dress for Less)
Skinny jeans: $9.99
Chevron shirt: $7.99
Striped dress: $9.99
Teal shirt: $7.99
Canvas shoes: $13.99
Total: $56.47

Consignment Store #1 (Ditto)
Gap white cami: $4.00
American Eagle jeans: $6.00
Bullhead jean capris: $16.00
Gap top: $8.00
Paper Denim & Cloth skinny jeans: $12.00
Noir Jeans: $6.00
American Eagle shirt: $0.00
Total: $56.52

Consignment Store #2 (Plato’s Closet)
Shirt: $3.00
Shirt: $7.00
Shirt: $7.00
Total: $18.48

Not too bad for the prices!  A lot of new clothes for just over $130!  I had $164, so I stayed well under-budget!  Woo-hoo!  Not too shabby!

Now for my grocery shopping run-down from today.  No HUGE deals, but there were a few good ones.  The big event they have right now is mix and match 4 specified items and save $4.00. (So a savings of $1.00 off each item bought.)  You have to buy 4 in order for the savings to occur, though.

Total Budgeted: $180 (Some was rolled over from last week)
Total Spent: $149.58
Total Saved: $37.86

Best Deals

12 Pack Bounty Papertowels
Regular Price: $16.79
On sale: $13.99
E-coupon: -$1.00
Total: $12.99

Generic Brand Vitamins
Regular Price: $8.99
On sale: $6.74
Coupon: -$1.25
Total: $5.49

Ghirardelli Chocolates (x2 bags)
Regular Price: $3.99 ($7.98)
On sale: 2/$6.00
E-coupon: -$1.00
Total: $5.00

Nutrigrain Bars (x2)
Regular Price: $3.89 ($7.78)
On sale: $2.99 ($5.98)
Mega-Event Savings: -$2.00
Total: $3.98

Store Brand Chicken Tenderloins
Regular Price: $9.74
On Sale: $6.95

Pampers Baby Wipes (x2)
Regular Price: $6.57 ($13.14)
On Sale: $5.99 ($11.98)
Mega-Event Savings: -$2.00
Total: $9.98

Stauffer’s Frozen Meals (x5)
Regular Price: $2.69 or $2.99 ($14.05)
On sale: 5/$10.00

PopSecret Popcorn
Regular Price: $3.95
On Sale: $2.50
Coupon: -$1.00
Total: $1.50

So, there ya have it!  Nothing too major, but not too shabby saving almost $40.

I hope to be back tomorrow or Thursday with my May goals.  They are going to look much different than my goals have looked in the past.

Have you found any great deals lately?

Resolution Recap

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Ha ha!  Ha ha ha!  Ha ha ha ha!  Ha ha!

Ok, I am done.  I just thought I would get that out of the way, as that is exactly how I feel about my goals this month.  Last week I was pumped up and ready to make the second half of the month a good one.  Little did I know that my appendix had something else in mind.  I guess if you really want to know how my goals went last week, you can just imagine that I really don’t have any.

I guess I haven’t done nothing to help with my goals.  I did get the last piece of my license renewal paperwork.  Now to get everything in a big envelope, write a check, and get it in the mail soon.  I should be able to do that tomorrow.

Honestly at this point I am ready for April to be finished.  I feel like we keep getting hit over and over.  I am mentally, emotionally, and physically just exhausted.  The latest in our string of excitement is our other dog, Rose.  Yesterday afternoon/evening I noticed that she started to look lumpy.  It looked very similar to an older dog who may have some fatty tumors on its body.  Rose is not very old at all (just 5 years old), and the lumps seemed to show up rather quickly.  They were not hard.  They were not tufts of fur.  They were not scabs.  We think she was stung by something and is having an allergic reaction.  We called the vet answering service and spoke with our vet.  He said to give her some Benadryl and a children’s asprin.  We did that, and she seemed to calm down enough and went to bed.

At one point last night I noticed she was licking her paw quite a bit.  I looked at it and she had a bit of an oozy spot between two of her pads.  She did not like me looking at her paw, and I wasn’t able to really see if there was something stuck in there.

This morning she was up and restless around 4:30.  I finally got out of bed with her and gave her another round of Bendaryl.  Her face and head were still pretty lumpy, and she had a few other lumps on her body.  We hope we can avoid another vet bill, but if it doesn’t get better, then we are going to take her in for a Cortisone shot.

Besides that, I am dealing with some personal stuff that is taking an emotional toll on me.  I am not going to get into on this blog, but I am definitely feeling drained.  It hasn’t helped that I have not had a good night’s sleep since Friday night.  My pain meds are messing with my sleep and keep me up much later than normal.  I only had to take one of them yesterday, and I hope to get through today without needing any of them.

I just keep telling myself to take it one day at a time.  Each day that I get through is a victory in my book.  I know that this is all just temporary, and that things will improve.  Right now it is hard to have that outlook, though.  I have a wonderful support system around me, and I couldn’t do it with my friends and family.

I am trying to find my normal again, so hopefully I will get back into the swing of blogging each day.  It is something I enjoy and is a great outlet for me.  If my posts are a bit erratic though, please forgive me.