Sunday, May 31, 2009

Please Pray

Without naming any names until this is all said and done (and I have a picture to prove it!!), please pray for some dear friends of ours who are, or so we all thought, in the process of adopting a cute, tiny, baby girl that was born yesterday. There have been some issues with the birth parents since Thursday, so PLEASE PLEASE pray as today is crucial. Birth mom might be discharged, and we have to basically wait and see until the 48 hours is up around noon on Monday as to if the adoption gets to go through or not. We are so anxious for this family to come home complete tomorrow. God, be near. Bring them comfort, peace, and your grace and mercies. We know your strength is new each day. Give it to them Lord today as they need it most. We love you guys!!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Sleep arrangement changes

Wish us luck, tonight is the night! Cara and Micah are fast asleep in Cara's 'old room' which is currently 'their room.' They went right to sleep. Granted, we were at a friend's house past 8 (they are both usually in bed between 7 and 7:30) then came home and gave baths while Daddy finished moving the crib into the room. Laid down at 9 and they were OUT. I actually heard Micah talking himself to sleep instead of Cara. Now, I say they're asleep. I'm going to actually go in and check once they are good and quiet. We had been planning on this Friday, so they had a weekend to get used to it. I know they'll do fine together, I just hope Micah stays asleep. He's been doing really well, but then I think the 'tooth hurts fairy' hit this morning about 5:20 and he was cranky for a little spell. I hope this helps with the hotel night this weekend for my cousin's wedding! I tried to have them nap at my parents house in the same room, but the bed C sleeps on there is much higher, and Micah could see her and they were just cracking up at each other for like 30 minutes, so I had to separate them for naps. In their current room, C's bed is low, and Micah has a bumper so they can't see each other. So here's praying for a good transition.

We've been busy, and the kids have been really cute lately :). I have lots of pictures to post, but I'm a little drained tonight. Maybe tomorrow. We get to arrange the playroom tomorrow, and rearrange closet items. FUN! (I'm serious, I love organizing and room changing!) :)

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Great Giveaway

Hi! I came across a great giveaway at Keeper of the Home. We all know plastic is bad for us, but I still use plastic ice cube trays to make Micah's baby food!! This is a great idea for a stainless steel version! :) Might as well try to win one. Hop on over and enter yourself.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Still around

You know how you look forward to things....and yet it doesn't work out quite how you think? Eric's UIL was early this year, and I was so excited. I was thinking, things will calm down sooner in the year rather than later. I was wrong!! Swine flu hit, so he couldn't take his 7th & 8th graders on their trip. So now he's planning a last minute day trip here in Katy. Plus he took the 6th graders on their trip. Plus he finished up and had to hand out their last fundraiser. We won't even get into the drama it takes to get a check on time from Katy ISD. Now we're on night 3 of 5th grader instrument selection, 5-8 pm every night, usually not ending until close to 9. I went to my parents house on Tuesday after Cara's last day of preschool, and came home last night. My grandparents were in town and my mom took Wednesday off. So at least I was only doing it alone for today. Oh yeah, and did I mention Eric got a flat tire on his way home LATE last night. So I took it in today and of course it isn't I have to take his car tomorrow to get the new tire put on. I just wanted to let you know I read your comments and start to email you, then a child wakes up or I get busy doing something else!! I'm still around, still deal finding (for me and my friend Val as our next cooking day is Monday!!). Just not taking pictures and posting. Must Hang Up Clothes. Must Clean Kitchen. Must Wash Sheets. This has been how my past few days have gone. Oh, and Cara has decided to have not one but two accidents in her car seat. Yesterday on the 1 hour drive home from my parents....maybe a little understandable. But today, on the 8 minute drive to Eric's office?? Well, maybe it was a little longer because I was speeding (a little) and got pulled over!! (I got a warning, Praise God!). And she just sat on it and didn't even tell me, I noticed it when I got her out. At least I had her backpack in the car which always has a change of panties and shorts.

Wow, ok before this post gets any more random, I will quit. friend Jamie....check out this post on a couple reasons I cloth diaper. :)

Monday, May 18, 2009

Cloth Diaper Anniversary!

Ok, as many of you know, I have a thing with dates. I can remember just about anything. Like today is George Strait's 57th birthday :). Ok, it's actually my father-in-laws too, so that's easy to remember. And like 1 year ago this month (ok, see, I forgot the actual date, I actually think it was earlier in the month, and Sarah Wilson went with of my few friends that didn't convert!) I went to cloth diapering full time!! Call me crazy but I LOVE it :). And just think, if Jen B hadn't talked me through it, Sterling, Mindy, Valerie, Amanda, Meredith, Amber B (on and off), Crissy (trying to get husband on board) :) and others wouldn't be on this CD ride :). Thanks girl! Oh, and yes I'm totally taking all the credit although I know their other friends talked them into it too!! ha.

Oh, here's a picture from a month or 4 ago ;) of my CD's line drying!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Swagbucks for all my new readers!

I'm trying not to post this every month...I think I'm doing pretty good, but it is TOO good of a deal to not share! Have you heard of Swagbucks yet?? It is essentially used similar to google to search for anything on the web.

Search & Win

The great part about it is if you have friends that are referred by you, you earn for their first 100 swagbucks they get. And they have some great gift cards and prizes you cash your swagbucks in for. My favorite is for every 45 swagbucks, you can get a $5 gift card. What CAN'T you buy on amazon?? That's a great deal. And so far I've received over $60!!! Now about every 10-12 days I'm earning another $5!

You can earn swagbucks by searching for anything. It's not everytime, but I usually win at least once a day. And Fridays are mega-swagbucks days, where you usually earn more than 1 swagbuck when you win! What are you waiting for? It's free!! Just click on any Swagbucks word in this post, or click on the banner, and you will be winner and earning SOON! :)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Lots of bloggy love, and my money makers!

So, I went to Randall's last night and they had the Kraft BBQ sauce for $.75 for the 18 ounce regular styles (and $.85 for the other styles). So I did what any normal person would do, I did a little giddy dance. As I was getting stuff for our cooking day, I had stopped by my friend Valerie's house and got her 2 printable coupons from and her one from the paper last Sunday. Somehow I had the paper coupon and 4 other printable ones (don't know how), so I could get 8 total. So I did 2 transactions to get the catalinas (which didn't print, so they just gave me $4 off my next transaction). It was awesome. I scanned 4 sauces, scanned 4 coupons and received $.47. Yep, you read that right, they paid me to take the BBQ sauces home. Then I did another transaction and got paid $.59 :). YEA! :)
And in another note...I just received my second blog award this morning! Well, technically, I forgot to post about my first award. You can see Valerie's post here with the first award she gave me. I'm sorry, I just didn't get to posting it!! I guess I'll do it now. Valerie is my sister's sweet friend that gives me too many awards that I cannot keep up with! :) haha. She's not helping my habit of not being online all day! ;) Love you girl, she is totally awesome, and her birthday was like a week ago so Happy Late Birthday!

So I've been tagged as a fellow Queen of all things Awe-summmm. The rules: List seven things that make me awe-summm and then pass the award on to seven other people who I think are fabulously awe-summm. Ok, this is going to be hard, and weird. I can tell you 7 things my daughter and son are awesome at, and my hubby. Or my neighbor...he's AWESOME at turning the sprinkler on REALLY HARD and pointing it at my daughter's window just so she'll wake up from her nap REALLY early and in a bad mood. Oh wait, that's not what this is about...

1. I'm awesome for not going next door when said daughter woke up and asking him to please turn down his sprinkler NOW. Because who was I kidding, she was up and wasn't going back to sleep. And we're friends...well acquaintances with these people and their nice, and his wife gives me all these free flowers all of a sudden and garden tips.

2. My husband and I are awesome because we met in the Baylor marching band. Can't get much more band nerd than that.

3. I'll say a Yee-Haw with Valerie in that I'm awesome because I'm Texan!! :)

4. I'm awesome, again with Val, because I can drive a stick shift. It was what I learned on and my first truck. That was an awesummmm truck. I got it at 250,000 miles and when we sold it when I went to baylor it had 285,000 and was still going!

5. I'm awesomely in love with my hubby. He's such a sweet guy. And not only do I love him, but I respect him. Do you see that sweetie...I wrote it for all the world to see. (Yes, he reads my blog to 'catch up' on the day to day things) :) ha!

6. I'm awesome because I make all my kids baby food. I love it, however, I realized this week all he had left unless I went to the store late last night (thus the run) was 1 pear and TONS of sweet potatoes! I didn't want him turning orange or anything, so I got some new fresh stuff :) (for cheap....Randall's has a $1 off coupon for strawberries on their says 2 or 4 pound pack, but as long as you buy more than one pack, you can use it) :)

7. I'm awesome because I think talking about coupons is something I'm awesome for. Yes, I know, NERD ;) Oh, and I'm awesome because my friends are awesome. They are fellow Christ Followers and I am loving the road we are following and raising our kids together! :)

Ok, I can't do the other blog thing Thanks again Val. Here are my 7 blogs ;) I'm going to do some NewGround friend loving, because I read their blogs as often as they read mine (or maybe more...yes, stalker...I know) :)
Celesta - way far off in the Netherlands, but I still 'feel' like she's close by. Miss you!
Erin--a college friend, and she just had a beautiful baby girl . I want another one of those!!
And last but not least, my sister Bailey. Only because maybe NOW she'll update her blog with new house pics! :)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Great deal, especially if you are Once A Month Cooking!

So this month's menu at calls for 64 oz of BBQ sauce. What's a girl to do except make money off getting it?? If you haven't already, print 2 coupons for $1 off Kraft BBQ sauce on my little widget on the left for. Then click below on the Kraft foods logo and print again. Then take the $.75 from the 5/3 Smart Source. Then, take them to Kroger or Randalls, and after you buy some, you get a coupon for $$ off your next order. Here's the promo:

Buy 4 & Get $2 ONYO
Buy 5 & Get $2.50 ONYO
Buy 6 or more & Get $3 ONYO

Awesome!! :) Thanks to Just Frugalicious!

Coupon Class in Katy

Anyone want to go to this with me? I think it would be neat to hear how someone else does it. Let me know!!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Get your AWESOME coupons, and QUICK!!


Ok, this is awesome!! (Did I mention that?)


Click Here

Click above and sign-up for the Kraft Foods community, you can sign up to receive their newsletter, etc. And when you're done, you can print over $50 in Kraft coupons!! On BRAND NAME things I rarely buy unless they are on super sales (like philly cream cheese, ritz, nabisco crackers, saltines, wheat thins, digiorno, etc!!). I'm so excited.

I mean, coupons are cool, but what's so great? Well, you can also 'clip' them 2 more times if you visit my side bar widget, or click here!

These have a limit on how many are going to be able to be printed, so definitely print yours today. I read online that if you combine these with some current Target printables ( (these are store coupons that can be combined with manufacturer's coupons), then you can get some really CHEAP or FREE snacks. I snagged a whole bunch of free Chex Mix and Bliss candy bars and ORGANIC Gala apples this weekend! I actually got 8 bags and 8 bars, and 18 apples for under $1!! This picture is just after my first store run!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mothers Day

Happy Mother's day to all the fabulous women in my life. First, to my mom who raised such a strong willed child. I know what you went through now mom, if only in the slightest, and thanks for not throwing me off a cliff ;) I'm happy to call you Mom and friend now. Thanks to my wonderful mother-in-law who raised such a sweet man. I hope I do half as good a job as you did making my little man into a wonderful husband and father. Thanks to Mawmaw and all my grandparents and older women in my life. You have been mentors, story tellers, babysitters and overall encouragers. I'm so happy I was blessed with so much time with you in this life! To my great mom-friends, I'm SO thankful we get to travel this road called motherhood together. I learn every day from you, and I am so happy to call you friend. God has placed you in my life for a reason, and I am oh so happy He did. To my friends parents that I grew up with, thank you for being such a great part of my childhood and for teaching me when I turned to you instead of my parents. You were involved in my church, you loved me as your own, and I am so grateful for that. As I sit here with my bedroom door closed, it's my mother's day gift from my husband (yes, I want to spend time with my kids on mother's day, which I have, but I also want some alone time, which he's giving me), hearing my daughter throw a fit and my husband (after asking me what I 'did' with them when I wanted to go to the bathroom....) deal with her, I'm so thankful for the life I have on this earth. I wouldn't trade anything in it. I love you all!

Friday, May 08, 2009

Baking Day, and taking back my household!

Man, the past few days (excluding today and yesterday) were just weird. Off. Not 'normal.' I had so many errands it seemed like I had to run, and Micah's whole nap schedule got off. Or as soon as I'd lay him down, we'd have to go pick up Cara from preschool (monday and tuesday). I am actually totally looking forward to her not being in preschool next year. We have some 'homeschool' type things planned for reading and writing, and hopefully it will be conducive to letting Micah get the sleep he needs instead of it always being interrupted. He would be passed exhausted in the evenings and it was of course, then really hard to get him to sleep. I missed my alone time with Cara in the mornings, and my alone time with myself in the afternoons! So, I took back our household and declared that things again would revolve around nap schedules for a few days. Man has it done wonders for little man, and little girl, and big Momma!! Yesterday, I had some 'plans' for being at home. Baking!! I've already raved about all the great meals we have been eating thanks to my big cooking day. And breakfasts have been one of them. Maybe we're enjoying them a little too much, because we only have a few muffins left!!

Ok, here is the main reason I decided I needed to bake:
All my mixing bowls were clean!! I had a 12 pack of eggs I got for 79 cents because they expire on 5/7 that I needed to cook. I had 2 brown bananas, which through past experience making this recipe, my most favorite,

from this great cookbook:
is exactly enough brown bananas! Plus, I had set the timer for my bread machine and awoke to this awesome yumminess. When the kitchen already smells good, it's easy to just keep on going.

We first started with the banana muffins. No nuts as I didn't think I had any on hand! I only made 12 as I only had 2 bananas, but from Cara and my experience with them already, they are totally yum!!
I also found this recipe online. I altered it a bit because I had similar items, but not all the items that I needed. Here's the post from who I got it from, I'm still searching trying to find out which blog it is from. Here's Katie's post (I have her name, just not her blog!!) I will find it and post a link:

These taste great are really good for you: so high in fiber and protein and notice that there's NO butter or oil! Because they are somewhat of a process with all the shredding (I use my food processor), it's worth it to make extra to freeze them. You can find flaxseed meal and the 5 grain cereal in the health food section of your grocery store, the breakfast aisle or the baking aisle, depending on how your store is organized.

Guilt-Free Bran Flax Muffins

1 ½ cups whole wheat flour
¾ cup flaxseed meal (or grind flax seeds in a coffee grinder)
¾ cup 5 grain cereal (old fashioned oats also work well)--I used oats
¾ cup brown sugar (or Sucanat for a more natural sugar)
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 ½ cups shredded carrots
2 shredded apples
½ cup raisins--I used dried cranberries...out of raisins
1 cup chopped walnuts--I used chopped almonds that I found...out of walnuts
¾ cup milk
2 beaten eggs
1 tsp vanilla

* Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix together flour, flaxseed meal, cereal, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl.

* Stir in carrots, apples, raisins and nuts.

* Combine milk and beaten eggs with vanilla and pour into bowl. Stir until moistened.

* Fill greased muffin cups. (or line with paper muffin liners if you're out of spray like I was!) Bake for 15 minutes or until a tooth pick comes out clean.

I made a double batch of these. Here's Cara after helping me stir.

If you love health food stuff, you'll love these :) If you don't....well, Cara calls them the black muffins!! She will eat them, but she and I usually trade off eating them with a banana muffin (we share one of each). I found that if we have a little dip (pure maple syrup), they are amazing. But I love crunchy stuff!!

Next was on to Money Saving Mom's WW Waffles. I made a double batch. What's funny is that I actually ran out of Whole Wheat Flour!! So I used about half white half wheat!

I think I ended up with 10. That's after Cara had one for 'brunch' after having a full breakfast! "Mommy, can I have a waffle???" :)

Here's most of our finished product. When Micah woke up after his hour and a half nap, we were all done, except for a few waffles. I just went in every 4 1/2 minutes and poured a new one.

I love having quick and easy breakfast foods, and a variety to choose from. Today we didn't have ANY plans, except to go pick up Micah's 6 month pictures, here's a preview:You can see the rest on facebook or flickr. Today was a lazy day. When Micah napped this morning I did a quick blog post and then Cara and I 'worked' on our numbers (i.e. played with these number things from discovery toys my friend Erin gave her for her 1st birthday a long time ago!) :) She loves them and it's helping her learn 12-20 better. She can now say seventeen instead of what she thought it was..."Eleventeen" Everyone took a decent afternoon nap, although Cara woke up cranky. I asked her if she ever went to sleep (she was quiet for 2 hours in her room), and she said no. Although she said no to 10 questions in a row, so I'm pretty sure she DID nap she just wanted to say no! Anyways, lazy friday evening, after a homemade pizza for dinner, we 'helped' daddy outside mow the back yard. I cut all Micah's pictures, and now need to get off the computer to write out notes to send them in. Thank you God for 2 blessed days with my babies. Thank you for patience and perseverance. Thank you for a sweet big sister and a loving adorable baby brother. And most of all for the best Daddy a gal could ask for!!

Micah post :)

My favorite picture of Micah Man in the bluebonnets last month!

Can you tell it's naptime and Friday. Friday is my day to 'let loose' and just chill at home. Kids are asleep. I missed my 'internet' time yesterday, so I'm doing a few posts. I have taken so many pictures lately (which you can see on my flickr account here). Sign up to be one of my contacts if you want to see all my non-public pics (all THOUSANDS of them) :). Plus, I can't do 2 Cara posts and leave little man out.

We went to my mom's house this past Saturday and hung out. I tried to get a similar picture of Cara at 7 months, like this one:

Because Micah is sitting up so well now, and he LOVED looking out side at my parents house. Here are a couple of him:

I always say they look so much alike, but then when I compare, I think they are definitely different! They are siblings, but have very different features. I think they looked more alike when they were younger.

Ok, while at mom's look at this awesome picture I captured of his raised eyebrow!! It made us laugh!

He's so white, we always have to put a hat on him. Problem is, we have lots of little girl hats :) He looks good either way!

Here are my parents with Micah and Cara on "Papa's kart." He has a pimped out camo golf cart (that's SILENT) for the deer lease. He took Cara around the yard on it.

Here's a cute picture of him sitting up and that semi-smile he always seems to have on his face.

And here's the mischevious, yeah mom, I'm going to be crawling REAL soon, and your whole world will change pose.

And I think this picture is a big indication of how his childhood is gonna go...being dressed up by sister :)

And here is Cara 'feeding' him his water cup.

Papa was in town for a funeral yesterday and came to visit. Although there is no 'blood' relation, these two's baby pictures look oddly familiar!!! It's the ears ;)

How to keep your children entertained: let them help you!

Cara loves being in the kitchen with Mommy. And it's because I've always welcomed her in! Sometimes, yes, it's hard to get stuff done with a little one in tow, or underfoot, but the lessons I'm teaching her I know will not soon be forgotten. Here are a few things she helps with (over the course of this past week).
Her new favorite thing to do is help mommy 'wash the cups.' I pull her kitchen stool up to the sink. I'm trying very hard to teach her not to waste water, so after I've cleaned the sink good, I let her play while it's filling up (usually while I'm unloading the dishwasher....yes look at all those dirty dishes piled up!!). Otherwise, she just wants the water to run non stop! Look at those gorgeous (unkept this particular morning) curls!! :) She loves dumping water from one cup to another, and I love telling her how one is bigger than the other and the water from it won't fit into the smaller cup. She's not quite grasping 'volume' as a concept yet, but hey, the seed is planted :) Her other favorite thing is for me to put a drop of soap in the cup, then let it fill up with bubbles. "Put bubbles in the cup mommy!!!" I love my girl!

Her other 'chore' she enjoys helping out with is drying and sorting the silverware. Obviously, I do the knives (although, she's been known to pick them up and put them in another cubby!!), but she likes drying...(stop taking my picture already mom!)

and sorting. I ask her to count them as she's putting them in. She knows how to match the forks, the little spoons, the big spoons, etc. That's my little genius (ok, maybe I'm getting a little ahead of myself...ha!).

Another way Cara is great is when Micah is fussing. I ask her to go put the pacifier in, and she ends up 'reading' to him or playing with him, or just overall keeping him entertained. This was such a sweet morning a few days ago. I had washed diapers, but none were stuffed, so I asked her to go play with him so I could stuff one to put him in. She ended up talking to him, playing with him. She is such a good big sis. And of course I had to take a picture of it!

I will soon do a baking day post...but I did want to share some pictures from our baking morning yesterday. First off, I usually put her stool up against the counter, thinking she can stand and help me. Then I go get some ingredients and turn around to this:
Please sit on your bottom honey!! Thanks, that's much better. There is learning in everything we try to do. She counts as she puts the muffin paper cups in the muffin tin. She's great at counting to 12 because we bake muffins a lot :).

And probably their favorite part...taste testing!! (she actually loves these waffles, that was just a silly face) :)

I hope that inspired some of you to find joy in the little things. Or little ones. Yes, sometimes we could do things much faster or better without their help, but soon we will be in the time of our years when we wish they were here underfoot 'helping.' I am trying to cherish these day!! :)

Cara 'isms' and catch up

She's hilarious. Even when she's in trouble she's funny. Right now, she's very into the 'pretty dresses' my mom and I got her for new jammies. She's used to sleeping in long sleeves and pants sets, because we keep it cool in our house at night. However, now that she's older and waking up sweaty, we thought it time to get her some cute jammies. If you see my child around town with me wearing jammies, just know, yes I know, and yes she has shorts on under neath. Today we got dressed with shorts and a shirt. Around 5 minutes later, we were in the living room, and since I folded clothes last night while the kids were asleep, the clothes were still out here. She found one, and refused to leave her shirt on. So today she is wearing jammies, shorts, water shoes and her pink easter hat. Beautiful!! :)

I really need to start working on proper grammar with C. When she gets put in time out, afterwards, I always ask her why she got put in time out. And she always says, "For when I...." :) Micah is growing like a weed. Almost crawling. It's like he decided to sit up and do everything all at once!! He crawls backwards SUPER fast! I had to put the bumper pad back in his crib because his super chunky legs kept getting caught in between the crib rails!!

Just an update, we had an amazing day yesterday. And I think it was in part to me not being able to get the internet to work. I mean, today was crazy, 63 emails, but having a computer free day with my kids was awesome. Everyone slept well. During Micah's first (hour and a half) nap, Cara and I made 33 muffins and 10 waffles for breakfasts (most of them we froze). They were yummy. I will do another post with pictures of our baking day. The best part of our day was obeying God and getting up and starting the day with His word and in prayer. IT made all the difference. Well, I need to finish up so I can spend some time with Cara alone. Here's a picture of Eric's mom on her birthday on 4/28. Happy late (blog related wishing) birthday Nana!! That's my first homemade card in months! And her and Grandad's 32nd anniversary yesterday. It's great to have such amazing in-laws!! :)

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

"Baby" Sitting and straight up debt talk!

We had an amazing date night last night at Carinos. The kids did awesome for my friend Meredith who sat with them while they slept I am currently sitting here blogging (and about to organize coupons) as her little man sleeps upstairs. Eric and I talked and figured out last night was our first date night since Micah was born. We had a wedding a couple months back, that was a blast, but a lot of friends were there, so it wasn't purely 'couple' time.

We talked about lots of things. I won't share them all here, as what's the point of having a marriage covenant if you post online for all the world to see?? :) But one thing that we did talk about was how I have done the budget through next year. Yes, Misty plans ahead, and budgets 19 months at a time. I had so much fun in January doing this years budget (I do a yearly budget and then break it down by months), and seeing how far in our baby steps we could go, that I decided recently I wanted to see what next year would look like too! And for me, doing that is EXCITING!! and Inspiring!! And it makes me want to get down and get this stuff DONE!

This is our second go round at the baby steps. See, we had sold 2 cars, and ended up selling our house in August 2007. We got out of debt and had a fully funded emergency fund. Then life and overspending happened. And putting the money in easy reach was just dumb. Oh yeah, and when the 3rd beater broke down, we got a minivan. Granted, we only did a 24 month loan, that we pay extra on every month, but that's 24 months that we shouldn't have done. Hindsight is always 20/20 (but I DO LOVE MY MINIVAN!) :) And we are maintaining it so we will have it for as long as it lives. Anyways, so from now, May 2009 to December 2010, we will go from baby step #2 to baby step #6!!! :) I'm so excited. We will have all medical bills from Cara's hospital stay paid off by July. We will have the minivan paid off by October (so 17 payments!). We will have $10,000 in our emergency fund by August 2010. And after that, it goes so fast. Fully funded IRAs (saving 15% of gross pay each month), college savings (our goal is $400/month or $200/kid/month. However, if we have another step 6 will be a little farther away), and then all extra money going to the mortgage. I also worked in even more 'murphy' funds. We will be saving throughout the year for gifts, so a set amount each month instead of just putting them in the budget the month of the birthday. This works out well, so if I find gifts for 75% off, I can get them! We also have Christmas (as we do this year) throughout the year. I'm also saving $1,500 for the year for healthcare, for when we go over our 'healthfund' through Katy ISD and have to pay out of pocket. This way it doesn't come out of our monthly budget, we have an extra account for it. I also accounted for swim lessons for Cara, increased our blow money slightly, car maintenance, and of course, online offers expense, so I can make some more gift card money!

Anyways, I'm super excited. Eric is so great at sticking to the if I'd only do as good. I mean, I'm really good at the big things (groceries, etc), and this month, with my menu plan, I hope to do great with dining out. So far I have stuck to my menu plan to a T, and love it. I can't wait to do another cooking day. I love pulling the main dish out of the fridge and sticking it in the oven, and only having to worry about veggies. E - A - S - Y! So, dining out shouldn't be an issue (towards the end of the month, when the money isn't really there, that's when we crave non-home food!). Ok, I must organize these coupons before Clint and Meredith get home.

Oh, and please pray for me. I had a rough afternoon with the kids, and am looking forward to some quiet time alone with them tomorrow. C and I will be doing a big baking day freezing up some muffins/waffles, etc. I bought a 12 pack of eggs that are expiring soon for 79 cents, so I need to use them up ASAP!

Check out MoneySavingMom's monthly budget update. She is inspiring!! Saving for a 100% paid for home for CASH!

Monday, May 04, 2009

Menu Plan Monday X 2

I've been trying to menu plan 2 weeks at a time. That way I go to the store less, and spend less. I'm REALLY trying to stretch my budget this month (only $80 per paycheck = $160 this month), but it's great because I have a freezer full of meals! Here is the semi-plan. It's rearrangeable as some things come up!! :) We also have lots of breakfasts in the freezer and some ham and swiss homemade hot pockets Eric takes for lunches when we don't have leftovers. I usually snack for lunch or have a sandwich on my homemade it!! All the things that say Freezer Meal were things Valerie and I made on our cooking day. You can click on the recipes from this link from

Monday - Hammy Cheese - freezer meal with frozen veggies

Tuesday - DATE NIGHT (we think...what better way to celebrate cindo de mayo than eat italian?)

Wednesday - Cheddar butter burgers - freezer meals with homemade buns and steamed brocolli

Thursday - baked potatoes stuffed with chicken, cheese, etc

Friday - Zesty BBQ chicken - freezer meal - with homemade buns and frozen veggies

Saturday - Orange Apricot pork chops - freezer meal with some veggie/salad

Sunday - Beef fajitas cooked by Eric - frezer meal

Monday - Pizza stuffed meatloaf - freezer meal

Tuesday - Chicken cordon bleu - freezer meal with carrots and peas

Wednesday - home made pizza. probably topped with chicken and broccoli or asparagus

Thursday - Spaghetti bake this is just random, some noodles, some browned beef, maybe some veggies, some spaghetti sauce, tossed in a casserole dish and, topped with mozz cheese and baked a little

Friday - sandwiches on homemade bread (it's guys night!)

Saturday - leftovers/use up the pantry night ;)

Sunday - beans / rice tortillas with corn and green beans

The most awesome thing about this 2 week menu plan is the only things I HAVE to buy this week at the store are:





and a few other fruits/veggies to puree for Micah. I have everthing else either on hand or in the freezer!! I love it. This is a part of my menu plan monday hosted by and $5Dinners!

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Free Carinos Meal for Moms...who wants to trade babysitting??

Hello to all my friends!! How about a yummy dinner out, including dessert, and a drink, and FREE babysitting service, for around $15??? Thanks to Hip 2 Save I found out about this awesome deal at Carinos. I called the one here in Katy, and they are participating. It is only this Monday - Friday May 4 - 8th after 5 pm. As long as one entree is purchased at regular price (he mentioned no appetizer, no pizza, no salad--i.e. they don't count as entrees), then the mom gets unlimited soup or salad, a choice of chef-select entree (he said it's limited, some panini sandwiches, spag and meatballs, build your own pasta, etc), a mini dessert and a drink for free! Talk about a great deal!! If you celebrate Mother's Day early, you can spend probably 1/2 to 1/3 of what you would have spent on Sunday, and this way, you can go to church and spend a leisurely Mother's day at home taking a nap while hubby plays with the kids!! haha.

What did I say about free baby sitting?? If you (a good friend that lives in Katy, not some random person, HA!) watch my kids...I'll watch yours!! We'd like to go out Tuesday, Wednesday, or Friday of this week. It's our off week for bible study at church on Wednesday, so I know some of you can't do Wednesday night, but if you can, let me know!!! We are free to watch the kids any night we aren't out, however Eric has his last concert Thursday night, so I'd prefer any night but this night, as we may try to go for a bit :).

Please let me know asap. Email me at mistylnewsome at yahoo dot com and let me know if you're interested and which days will work for you. If there are many friends interested, I'll arrange a coop :) and we can figure out what works for everyone.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Church directory picture

We had our picture taken 4/15 for our new church directory at church and got it in the mail today. Is it me, or does Micah all of a sudden look like a little boy and not my little baby!! Where has the time gone???

Friday, May 01, 2009

Sitting up!

I forgot to say that Micah sitting up on his own now, like a BIG BOY as Cara would say. I have pictures, will post soon. We took his 6 month pictures today...wearing 9-12 month clothes but of course! They are precious, pick them up next Friday!

I now have 4 or 5 cloth diaper converts, plus a few closet wishers out there I think :) haha. Jen B--did you ever think you spending all that email time with me would turn into a whole hoard of Katy CD'ers??!?! It's just funny to me. We all love to wash our kids poo!!! tee hee.
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