Friday, May 29, 2009

Leftovers Are Yummy

Two days ago, I made Bisquick Chicken Fingers and they were soooooo good. The best I've ever made them I think.

I had a whole plate of left over chicken fingers yesterday, so I decided to make a nice green cold chicken salad. I wasn't really into cooking much, so I made this.
All I did was chop up the left-over chicken into marble size pieces and toss with a green salad. I did add a large chopped up green pepper, two diced tomatoes, some bacon bits (can't have a salad without bacon bits), and a touch of dressing. I don't really like a lot of dressing on my salads, as I feel it is too over-powering of a taste, so what I do is squeeze a bunch of dressing in and toss all the ingredients together to lightly coat the salad fixings.

The kids loved it, I loved it, and we ate it all. Well, the 3 year old didn't eat it, even though she loved the cold chicken (I gave her a taste while I was preparing), but the rest of us did.

I swear, those chicken fingers are so much better the second day! I love cold chicken, so I sneaked a few strips this afternoon before I put the rest away for dinner. I told my husband that when we go to Portland this summer on our day trip, I'll be packing cold chicken fingers for our picnic instead of hoagies. I could eat them all day, they were that good.

When I bought the chicken, I paid about $7 for a 3lb bag of boneless, skinless chicken breasts. I was able to get two whole meals out of it, plus a few strips for me as snacks, so I am really happy with it cost wise. Normally I purchase pre-cut chicken tenders, and then just bread them myself, but this worked just fine. I just thawed the breasts and then just sliced them myself.

Who else likes cold chicken?

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Bisquick Chicken Fingers

Last night I made, again, one of our favorites: Bisquick Chicken Fingers. The whole family just loves this one. I made it for my husband while he was home, along with some mashed potatoes, corn, and country gravy, and he said it was one of the most filling meals he has ever had. He loved it, and the kids love it, and I love it.


Ultimate CHicken FIngers-
3lb boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into strips (or do like I do, and buy pre-cute boneless skinless chicken tenders)
2/3 cup Original Bisquick mix
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt or garlic salt to taste
Paprika to taste
1 egg, slightly beaten
3tbsp butter, melted

Heat oven to 450F. line cookie sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray. In a 1 gallon ziplock bag, mix the bisquick mix, cheese, salt and paprika.

Dip half the chicken stirps into the egg, and place in bag. Seal the bag and shake to coat. Place chicken on cookie sheet. Repeate to use up remaining chicken. Drizzle melted butter evenly over the chicken.

Bake 20 minutes, turning halfway through bake time with a pancake turner, until no longer pink in the center.

makes 4 servings.

They're delicious! And tastes so much better than the storebought ones. I always double the "dip", and add tons of extra paprika. It tastes amazing.

Ok here are the pictures!!!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Something Made Me Laugh

Our son is 8 years old and such a character. He is this tall, gangly, super-skinny bird legged kid. He is 4'9" tall and weighs 74lbs.

After his shower tonight he was dancing around to some music I was playing, and it just totally cracked me up. It was just so funny to see his limbs flailing everywhere.

He is such a typical boy and gets embarrassed when he is caught doing something funny. There just isn't anything funnier than seeing him dance around. He can really move!!

Fat Smash Diet Update

My husband's accident totally derailed me in the diet department. I failed miserably, and I mean MISERABLY. I've still got two months till we leave for Canada, so today is the day I start eating healthier. I feel so wishy-washy with the diet lately. I really struggle with eating healthy, but I still need to eat better.

I'm not doing the fat smash diet right now. My hubby and I decided that we would just eat healthier.

The Harvard School of Public Health has come out with a new Healthy Eating Pyramid that we are both following.




I'd still like to lose between 20-30lbs before then, but if I can't do it, that's ok. I'd just like to lose some weight. Our gym membership is on hold now for the summer, so it's working out for me at home now. So I will also have to incorporate at-home exercise for the summer.

I wonder how this new way of eating will work for me? I'm a little scared because I know I won't get the quick weight loss at first like I did with Fat Smash, so I am slightly reserved about this new plan. Wary, maybe.

Here's to a new thinner me!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Eeking Along

Some things have been weighing heavily on my mind lately.

Do you ever feel like you are just eeking your way through life? Just getting up each day and doing your daily routine. Get up, feed the kids, get the kids off to school, go to the gym or run errands, eat lunch, do something in the afternoon, make dinner, help with homework, kids shower, kids to bed, tv or computer time and back to bed. Over and over and over with no purpose.

I feel like that right now. Like I have no purpose. I'm trying to figure out what I want in life, because I'm just not living the way I want to be.

Being a mommy and a wife is fine, but being a housewife is just not fulfilling to me. I think for a long time I have struggled with some form of depression, but never fully owned up to it. I don't really think it needs to be medicated, I just think I need to improve my view on life and my surroundings.

But how do you find purpose, how do you figure out what fills you up and makes you excited each day? And how do you make yourself happy? What do you do to enrich yourself?

I've been out of the work force since October 2000. Yeah, that's right. I haven't had a paying job in almost 9 years. And by the time I get one, it is going to be almost 12 years. 12 years out of the work force. What am I going to do with myself once my youngest goes to kindergarten? I need to get a job to keep myself busy, or so my husband says. He seems to think that once she starts school full time, be it kindergarten or 1st grade, I will be miserable and become even more depressed. So he is going to make me go back to work. This means I need to figure out what to do.

Do I go back to school? That really isn't very economical because we want to buy a house and save for retirement, and my talents could better be used for a paying job. Do I settle for a mediocre job in retail? That's all I've known though. Getting a job, or the prospect of it, scares the crapola out of me. And that coupled with all the major changes going on in our family in the next three years really throws a monkey wrench into my comfort zone. But I will need to do it.

For now though, how do I make myself happy? I feel that losing weight will make me happier. If I didn't have so much clutter and a cleaner house I would be happier. If I wasn't a pseudo-single parent I would be happier. I think it sounds like I just need to pull my head out of my ass and buck up, and make myself feel better. I've no motivation to do anything, and myself and the kids suffer for it.

It makes me sad that I am not the woman, wife and mother I should and can be, but sometimes I just can't figure out how to get out of the funk and stop eeking along. I need to become a better me.

Some things I have thought about doing to better myself are:

*learning how to sew with a sewing machine
*finishing up/catching up my scrap booking
*losing weight and sticking to a healthy eating plan/exercise plan
*buy a piano and take lessons again
*try to cook new foods and be more adventurous
*figure out what it is that I am good at. That one thing that I can do.
*sticking to a daily schedule. I have one, but I've been lazy. again.
*keeping up with my household duties, especially the laundry. It is my nemesis.

What about yourself? What do you do to make yourself feel better?

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Bargain Shopping

I'm not sure I am what some people would call a bargain shopper, but to myself I am. We've had a bit of good luck with sales lately, so I wanted to share my good deals.

Today we had to run to the mall to pick up a charger for my kids' game boy, and also stopped into The Children's Place and Gymboree because both were having a Memorial Day Sale.

Shopping at TCP was even more of a bargain today, because their points card was giving double points for the month of may and June. I spent $28.20 before tax, so double points brought me to $76 worth of qualifying purchases (I had $20 already). Once you reach $75, you get a $10 rewards card. So I will be getting that shortly, and can use it in store to shop. With my perks place rewards card, I also got an additional 10% off my purchases. Today I bought 6 t-shirts and only spent $31.25 total.

Gymboree was my favorite stop of the day, as if that isn't already painfully obvious, lol. I haven't been shopping there very much because we've been trying to save some money, and because my husband just had an accident. But I had been saving my pennies, and also had a coupon saved for this weekend's sale. For a total of $55.72 including tax, I got:

2 pairs of pants
6 pairs of pajamas (2 for each older girl, one for the baby and one for the boy)
2 sets of hair accessories

The pajamas averaged about $6-$7 each, and my cheapest item was only $.95!!! I tried to paste pictures, but the stock photos are missing for some reason off the website. I can't find them anywhere.

While I wasn't planning on shopping at Gymboree today, I'm glad I got some good deals, and everyone got something. Even I did, because Bath and Body works was having their Memorial Day Sale as well. I bought myself some "Just A Minute" hand scrub for only $6. It was 50% off!

Friday, May 22, 2009

I Caught A Bug

I've had a bit of the crafting bug lately, and have been having fun making lots of bows for my daughters. I gave some to a friend for her daughter's birthday yesterday, and someone liked them so much that they ordered a custom one from me!

It's a great sense of accomplishment for me, because I taught myself how to make the bows, and this shows that someone likes my stuff. I feel really good about it! I'm almost done with her bow, I just have to glue it together, and then I will post pictures sometime this weekend.

While I was out yesterday picking up ribbon to make the bow, I happened upon some really nice fabric. Now, I've had the sewing bug for awhile, but have never owned a sewing machine. I figured, if I want to make it so much, why not just sew it by hand. Am I crazy? haha.

Luckily for me, the fabric was practically ready for a dress, it just needed a seam. It was even hemmed already! I measured my daughter's chest and purchased the right size of fabric. I also got some matching thread, and coordinating grosgrain ribbon to make straps for it. It took me a few hours last night, because I had to do tiny tiny stiches, and I did double stiches up and down the whole length. I'm very very happy with the results. I am going to get some more fabric on Tuesday, hopefully they will still have some, and make tops for my older daughters.

All I did was turn the fabric inside out, and line up the corners, and stitch away. I did use some pins to hold in place as I was stitching to ensure an even line, but other than that, I did it all by hand.

Here is the finished product. I LOVE it!! What do you think?



The good thing is, once the dress is too short, I can use it as a top for her.

I've already hinted to my mom that I want a sewing machine for my birthday. I hope my mom pulls through this time.


Update May 28th: I was able to purchase fabric for my older daughters, black with a red cherry print. It is long enough for a dress for them, so I will be working on those dresses this weekend. The only setback to this fabric, is that it wasn't hemmed. That isn't too big of a deal, because I bought no-sew fabric glue to hold the hem as I am stitching it. It will just take more time. I'll post pictures of those as soon as I am done.

Monday, May 18, 2009

The Great Carseat Debate

My daughter turned 3 in March, and is still in a 5point harness. She is also forward facing and has been since a year old. Before she was born, we bought a Graco car seat that fit up to 22lbs and 29", which fit her well for the first year, and then she moved into the seat that we had left over from her older sister. That seat will be good for another 2-3 years, so she has awhile to use it before it expires. Car seats are generally good for about 6 years after their manufacturing date.

She is about ready to be out of the 5point harness and moved into the belt positioning booster. Her car seat right now is a 5pt and converts into the belt positioning booster, but it uses the seat belt instead of the 5 point harness. I'm delaying taking her out because I am nervous about her being in a seat belt. I have to do it really soon though. I'm actually contemplating purchasing a booster seat for her that lets her still use a 5point harness for quite awhile longer, but this remains a debate between my husband and I. He thinks that we should use the belt positioning feature because the other kids were in belt positioning boosters by this age already.

Years ago when we had the twins, they were in convertible car sets for quite some time, and we put them forward facing in those seats at a year. We knew NOTHING about car seat safety, absolutely nothing. Once they outgrew the weight/height limits, they were moved into another seat. My Oma (grandma) told me that when she had her babies, they were in a box in the floorboards of the car!!! When I was born in the 80s, my mom said the car seats we had back then were nothing compared to what we have now.

I know that we put our children in belt positioning booster seats earlier than they should have been, but at least we haven't had a bad accident. I think the twins were in a high back one at 2? Our middle daughter was in this current seat (that our toddler is using) until she reached the size limit too, and she is now in a regular backless booster seat.

So here's the dilemma: Do I remove the 5 point harness straps from our youngest daughter's car seat and just use the seat as a booster? it will still be latched in to the seat. The seat has special slots on the side for the seat belt to go through, and then she can use this seat till she turns 5. Or do I go out and purchase a booster seat with a 5 point harness that she can use for quite awhile?

I was thinking of purchasing this one from Wal Mart for $45



The only problem I can see with this seat is that it only goes up to 40lbs and 43" for the 5pt harness, and then goes to the belt positioning booster. Now, she is already 40" tall and weighs 35/36lbs. Is it worth it to buy a seat so she can use a 5pt for only 3"? she'll probably grow that in a year or less (in between her 2nd and 3d years she grew 4"!!).
Or should we just stick with what we have and use that? It can be used as a belt positioning booster till 52".

There is also this option:



It's also $45, but has height limits up to 57" tall, but it's only a belt positioning seat. Wal Mart has a couple other options, but they are more expensive.

I do like this next one, but my husband would throw a fit if I said I wanted to buy it. It is too pricey, and like I said before, he thinks she can be in a seatbelt now. This one she can use the 5pt harness basically till she reaches 65lbs. I would like to buy it, but the problem lies in convincing my husband. He can be incredibly thick headed and I'm not quite sure how to get around buying $160 car seat and not pissing him off. *sigh*



Most of the convertible carseats/boosters you will find are only good for kids up to 40" or 40lbs or both, and kids at size aren't quite ready to be in a seatbelt. We're lucky nothing happened with our other kids when they were in seatbelts at those sizes.

I don't know what to do.

So my question is this: What would you do in my case? How old are your kids and what kind of seats are they in?

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Beautiful Day

Today the weather is perfect: Mid 70's and blue skies! I have the kids outside wasting time before we head to the school carnival this evening. I can smell someones fire outside as it comes in through the window with the breeze. The neighbor is mowing his grass and I can smell that too. I love the smell of fires and freshly cut grass.

The kids are making their own bug "habitat" in a clear sterilite box, and filling it with grass, sticks and an bugs they find. I love sending them outside on days like this because it gets them out of my hair for the most part, and gets them outside. Though my son is complaining because "its hot out here", and he wants to go play on the Wii. I think we'll be having trouble with him this summer, with me constantly saying "Outside", over and over again.

This weekend is only a hint of what summer will be like for us. Summer vacation starts in one month, the kids' last day is June 18th. Then they go back to school after Labor Day in September.

Well, it is time again to deal with an 8 year old boy who wants to come inside...

Until later!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Are You Ready To Live Debt Free?

This economy has really tanked, and countless families are drowning in credit card debt, car payments and mortgage payments.

Is your family struggling with any sort of debt? If so, then you can find help fromNetDebt.com


NetDebt is the web's first and only online debt settlement company. There is no need for you to have to go to an embarrassing interview and explain how you got behind on your debts, nor is there any need for you to have to talk to a customer service agent over the phone either. NetDebt is the first company to have an online enrollment for Debt resettlement. If you still do want to speak to a live customer service agent though, they are available if you want. Why not handle your
Credit Card Debt Settlement from the comfort of your own home?

If you are accepted as a client, NetDebt assigns you to a law firm that specializes in Debt repayment, working with your interests in mind and not the creditors. They will protect your rights and stop those harassing calls you get. NetDebt will work with any debt you have such as credit cards, medical bills, any UN-secured debt that you have.

I really like the fact that this website offers privacy. My husband and I have looked into Debt repayment plans in the past, and those people just make you feel like criminals. NetDebt is great because it is private, you don't need to speak to anyone on the phone or in person, and enrollment only takes a few minutes.

So why not head over to NetDebt.com and start your journey to better credit and less debt?

More On "The Big Project"

I've been updating you all on "The Big Project", check out my other Big Project Posts.

One of the ways I mentioned we'd be saving, is by cutting out our Dish Network bill. I love having satellite TV, but for the amount we're paying ($82.89/month with HBO and 200+ channels), we're not using it enough.

We also have a Netflix membership, but have recently switched from the 3 at a time, to the 1 at a time membership. We still get unlimited DVD rentals per month, so this will be perfect for us.

Another perk of netflix is the ability to watch movies instantly on your computer. This only works if you have a high speed connection though. We've used that a few times, but I strongly dislike watching TV shows on the computer. I'll do it if I have to, but I try to avoid it. So, in addition to that perk, you can buy a "Roku" unit, which connects to your entertainment center and allows you to watch your Netflix movies instantly on your TV!!! You just need to have a router and WiFi (which we have so my hubby can use wireless on his lap top when he is home).

The Roku unit is awesome. We use it more than we watch regular TV actually. And since Netflix has over 12,000 movies in it's instant library, there are countless choices for us to watch. I have about 90 items on our "menu" right now, including seasons 1-3 of Doctor Who, tons of movies for the kids, lots of shows from The History Channel and BBC, The Wiggles, and loads more. My kids have begun to watch shows like "Inspector Gadget", and the original "Mario Brother's" cartoon. Remember those? I was just a kid when those came out!

Since most of my favorite shows aren't available on Netflix instant, and are new episodes on TV, I have plans to just keep buying iTunes cards and buying the shows as I need them. I don't watch a lot of shows, so it might be maybe $15-20 a month, if that. I can probably watch several of them online on ABC.com too, if I choose.

Anyway, back to the point: we will be canceling our Dish Network account at the end of May, and relying solely on our DVD library (I just joined the Disney DVD Club again), Netflix and our Roku, and any shows I buy on iTunes. If we cut out the $83/month for Dish, and half of the Netflix bill (1 DVD at a time costs about $10 with tax, and we spend $18.42 right now with Tax), we will be saving just over $91/month towards The Big Project. I am not counting the iTunes cards in the new budget because I include those with the grocery budget. We're also looking into changing car insurance companies too, and seeing if we can't get a better rate.

That $91 from Dish and Netflix in turn will save us $1200 in the next year!!!

Check back soon for more posts on The Big Project!

*******

I wrote this post last week before my husband's accident. Unfortunately the savings has to be put on hold for a short time, as we're out of income for a couple weeks or so. I expect to be back up to par really soon. We'll just have to work harder this summer to make up for the lost income. It's just a minor set back, and we'll get back to saving in a few weeks.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Amish Bread

I just wanted to re-post a recipe I tried a couple months back. I have actually contemplated trying it again, but I'm just a little scared yet. I think it might be a good idea to wait till it is a bit warmer outside so the bread rises better. To be honest though, I thought my bread looked beautiful!

"Yesterday I made Homemade Amish Bread, but didn't have the greatest results. It was good, but very heavy and dense.

Today I tried again. I haven't had the opportunity to taste it, as it is going out with my husband. I might make the kids and I a loaf tomorrow.

What I did differently today was to first use 1/2 cup less flour, and 1/8 tsp more yeast. So I did 1 1/4 teaspoons of yeast instead of 1 1/8th. I also made sure the water was a lot hotter when I was disolving the yeast. And lastly, I made sure that the bread was in an even warmer spot than yesterday. Luckily I was baking cookies today (another post to come about that later), so the oven was on and the bread rose nicely. Twice.

Here is a picture of the bread right before I put it in the oven:

Photobucket

And here is one of it after baking. I also brushed butter on the top to soften it.

Photobucket

Please pardon the fuzziness, my camera battery is dying.

I'm guessing the final verdict will be tomorrow when my husband tells me if it was good or not!

****

2/15 I forgot to update. He said the bread was much much better! Still a little dense, but not nearly as bad as last time, LOL. As you can see the bread turned out beatifully as well, but I guess it "kneads" a bit more "kneading", lol."

Rustic Furniture

My husband and I love the look of log homes, and one day would like to own one. If we ever did, I would love to furnish it with rustic furniture. I find Rustic style furniture gorgeous, and it always looks so well made. It makes me feel like I'm being transported right into the forest!

I love this bedroom set:





Check out this rustic furniture website, and look at all the wonderful furniture they have to offer!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Hello Again!

Yesterday I found out that my husband was coming up the coast to get a truck so he could get back to driving and working. He landed up spending the night, and today he and I went and got the truck together. We got to go out for lunch with our youngest daughter, and had a really nice day together. He left after dinner tonight.

I was so thankful that I was able to see him after his accident, though it was hard to say goodbye to him this evening when he left. He left a few hours ago and I already miss him so much!

I wonder how long this uncertainty is going to last. How long will I worry when he leaves now? He has never had an accident before, and has been a truck driver for 7 years now. I just wanted to hug him and never let go.

The good news is, he has a load to pick up in the big city close to us, and the next stop in his load is not due till Friday morning (and the 2nd stop is only a couple hours away), so it looks like he'll be spending tomorrow night at home again! He will have to leave early, like 4AM, Friday morning to go back to work, but at least he'll be home.

Nothing is for sure yet though, we have to see how things go with the deliveries tomorrow and see if they are on time. If they are, he'll be home for dinner.

Is The Swine Flue Hype Over Yet?

I haven't heard much on the news lately, but maybe I'm just not paying attention. Regardless, it is still a good idea to protect yourself from any potential threats of Swine Flu.

If you have a family, and young children especially, it is so important to protect yourself and your loved ones from getting sick. Even with regular flu, or any simple virus, it is best to be protected so you don't infect others around you.

So why not be fun and fashionable while protecting yourself? Click here to view mask designs. These respiratory masks are really cute, and also help protect you from getting Swine Flu. Originally they were designed for little kids to wear in hospitals, but they have since branched out to other areas, and are now selling flu masks for adults.

FluFashion uses NIOSH Surgical N95 Particulate Respirators, also known as masks, "which uphold a filtration level and fluid resistance universally recognized in the prevention of the inhalation of airborne microorganisms."

"The "95" means the mask, if properly fitted
—and that "fit factor" presents a big if—can filter out particles down to .3 microns 95 percent of the time. (A human hair is roughly 100 microns in diameter). Human coronaviruses (like the swine
flu) measure between .1 and .2 microns, which is one to two times below the cutoff, but tend to be caught and travel on larger particles like mucus and flem which is released to the air forcibly when people sneeze or cough."






Monday, May 11, 2009

Value Village And Bargains

Anyone else like shopping there like I do? I had to head there today because my twins have a 2nd grade musical on Wednesday night, and my son needed some brown pants.

Despite the fact that I LOVE shopping at Gymboree and The Children's Place, I can't pass up shopping at stores like Value Village and Goodwill. Though the Goodwill here kind of sucks, so I just go to Value Village. I noticed a sign that said all the blue tags were a whopping... $.99!!!! Hooray!!!!!

My son's brown pants were still $4.99, but I did find him a pair of denim shorts for .99 cents. My two older daughters got some too, but they didn't fit my middle daughter, so the oldest got them all. My youngest found herself a pair of hot pink Cowboy boots that she adores, and those were only 4.99, and I also got her a few Gymboree pieces for quite cheap as well.

I spent $30, but got the following:

1 pair boys pants
1 pair boys shorts
1 pair toddler girls cowboy boots
1 toddler girl jacket
1 toddler girl dress
1 pair toddler girl jeans
1 pair girls shorts
2 girls skorts

So 9 items for $30 isn't too bad, I think.

I also found out that Value Village has $.99 cent Mondays. I never knew this, so it was quite a surprise. Thursday through Sunday, they sell a certain color tag for 50% off, and then the left overs from that sale get sold for $.99 cents on Monday. I'm going to head back next Monday to see what else I can find. My middle daughter needs some shorts for the summer, so I will be sure to look for her. I don't mind paying a little more than $.99 cents though, I was just excited to see them for that price.

I plan to go on the 25th as well because Value Village will have 50% off everything!!

Plastic Surgery

If you live in the LA County area of California, and are looking into Plastic Surgery, wouldn't you feel more comfortable with a Female Plastic Surgeon in Los Angeles?

Dr. Genevieve MacDonald serves the LA County area as a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. She specializes in breast augmentation, liposuction, rhinoplasty and various other procedures. Dr MacDonald studied, and received her MD at John Hopkins University, and has worked and studied at many different hospitals around the country.

I've contemplated getting a tummy tuck once I lose all this weight. I'm not set on where I will get my surgery done, but I have thought I might be more comfortable with a female doctor. I might have to give Dr. MacDonald a call!

Dr. MacDonald says her "attitude is to listen to what the patient wants, to explain thoroughly what can be accomplished, and to treat everyone's needs as top priority."

Primavera Anticipada

I think everyone and their dog knows who James Blunt is (You're Beautiful is his token song I think), but what about Laura Pausini?

When my husband was home last week, their duet "Primavera Anticipada" was the free video of the week on iTunes. I downloaded it, and then my husband and I liked it so much we actually purchased the song. Obviously, I can barely understand what she is singing, but I still love it! It's our favorite song right now. I think it has been played well over 100 times on our computer.



I'm sorry the quality is a bit bad, but it is from YouTube. The one I have downloaded from iTunes is much better.

Doesn't she have a fantastic voice! They sing great together.

Best Of Time Watches

I wear a watch every day, and I actually feel strange without it on my wrist. It is a beautiful yellow and white gold watch that my husband got me for Christmas almost 6 years ago.

If you're looking for a nice watch, check out Best of Time - Where Time Lasts Forever. They sell new and refurbished Rolex watches to you, and are able to offer reduced rates because they are an independent dealer. Best of Time is Better Business Bureau certified, as well as Pay Pal verified. Your purchase will be 100% insured from Buy Safe, so there is no need to worry about paying for such a large purchase online.

Rolex watches are beautiful, and I would love to own one one day. I found this one which is absolutely gorgeous:



Isn't it pretty? It has rubies, diamonds and mother of pearl. The retail value is $9,700, but Best of Time is selling it for the bargain price of $3199.95.

Best of Time says "Before we ship out our watches to you, they are inspected, adjusted, tested, refinished, refurbished, parts replaced if necessary, overhauled according to Rolex standards, properly lubricated, vacuum pressure tested and waterproof tested. All of our pre-owned Rolex watches are sent to you in its highest quality, guaranteed."

Sounds great to me!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Blur

I wrote yesterday's post a couple days ago after my husband left for work. In fact, I think I wrote it Thursday night and had it set to publish yesterday sometime.

Little did I know what a bad weekend we would have.

Friday night I was on the phone with my sister, when my husband called me at 11PM to tell me he had been in an accident. His truck rolled on a highway, two hours outside of Las Vegas, NV. Someone in a house near bye heard the accident, and rushed up there to see if everything was OK. He let my husband use his cell phone to call me and then call his work.

I didn't speak to my husband again till 5:30AM when someone else lent him a cell phone. You see, out in the desolate wasteland that is Nevada, there is almost no cell service for AT&T, which we have. I was worried sick because on the phone he sounded in shock, I didn't know if he was hurt, what the damage was to the truck etc etc. So between 11PM and 5:30AM, I only got 2.5 hours of sleep because I could not get to sleep till almost 3AM. I actually landed up calling the Nevada State Patrol around 2AM or so and they were able to give me the accident report. Thankfully my husband wasn't hurt too badly, except for some sore muscles and a nasty seat belt burn.

When he called me at 5:30AM Saturday morning, I was really groggy, so I don't remember much of the conversation. And then again, I was not able to get a hold of him till 1:30PM or so Saturday afternoon. I knew he was OK though, because he told me so.

I will spare you most of the details, because it would just take too long to write them all out. I will say however, I am lucky I was not widowed this weekend. My husband came very close to dying, as his truck stopped about 12FT from a very deep ravine. He was driving around a curve, the trailer couldn't handle it and flipped...the truck slid 200 FEET down the road. The windshield was found another 40 Yards further down the side of the road from the truck. He walked out of the space where the windshield was. He's been spending the last couple days in a hotel trying to recuperate. He is very sore, to say the least. His truck is totalled and the company is working on getting him a new one.

This weekend has been a blur for me. I've been so exhausted from worry, fear, stress...you name it! I was so scared after we first got off the phone on Friday night. I am so glad he is OK. My emotions have done a number on my body, I literally have no energy whatsoever. I'm so tired and all the caffeine I had today didn't even help perk me up one bit. I suppose it is also from the uncooperative kids I have right now (that's another post in itself!) and it's that time of the month, but those three things combined for a very tiring, and physically draining weekend. And you know, you can't help but wonder too, what would have happened had the truck gone over the edge. I couldn't help but think of that, which added to my stress. It's hard not to think of the most horrible things, but I am so glad he is safe right now.

Hug your husbands tight tonight and be thankful you have them! I don't know what I would have done had he been taken away from me. I am the luckiest woman in the world right now.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

So I'm A Single Mom Again

Well, technically not, but I will be for the next 10 weeks or so. My husband left Thursday morning for work again, so I am all by myself with the kids till mid July. I think he'll be home July 14th, two days before our trip to Canada.

I always hate this stretch because it is so long. I HATE that he has to be gone for so long. But we chose this, because it is one of our biggest money making times. He'll be home for two weeks in July anyway, right before my birthday.

When I think of the next 10 weeks, it seems like it will take forever to pass, and go slow as molasses, but in the end, it seems that it just flew by. I have no idea what we're going to do though. The kids have school till June 18th, so I have a month to "entertain" them before he comes home.

Unfortunately, we have decided not to put up our pool till after we come back from Vacation. We don't want to leave the pump going all the time while we're gone (6 days), so we'll just wait to set it up. I think I might purchase a small wading pool to pass the time though, and maybe a badminton set. We have a few good parks close by as well, so that will help pass the time.

What have you planned for the Summer? I need some good ideas to help keep the kids entertained from mid June to mid July.

Friday, May 08, 2009

The Big Project

A few days ago, I mentioned The Big Project in a post of mine, and promised a bit more information.

As of now, I can not give any information regarding details. That will all come to light in approximately two months after we have shared the news with our family members. I can, however, give some information so I don't sound like I am talking like a crazy lady.

My husband and I have embarked on a new chapter in our lives. It is something big, exciting, scary, and full of ups and downs. We're looking forward to it, but it will take a big sacrifice on our parts. Mostly mine though, because I do all the budgeting.

Here is what else I can tell you. We need to save up $15,000 in the next 13 months.

Crazy you say? Perhaps.

Last night we worked out a budget for "The Big Project". It was really draining because we are trying to figure out ways to cut back and save, save save.

Here area few areas where we have already started saving:

1) We paid off our daughter's bedroom set, saving ourselves $110/MONTH
2) We cancelled our storage unit, saving ourselves $63/MONTH
3) We put our YMCA membership on hold for J/J/A and that will save a total of $225
4) We reduced our YMCA membership which will save $20/MONTH
5) We reduced our Netflix membership, which will save $8/MONTH
6) We're going to cancel our DISH Network Satellite as of June 1st, saving
us $83/MONTH
*we have to pay an early termination fee, but it will be less than $100

Those all added up for the next 13 months will add an approximate $3,800 to our savings account. We already have almost $1000 in there right now. Our tax return next year will be at least 4K, if not 5-6,500 like it was this year (we're low-balling so we save more). That will also help put a huge dent into what we have left to save.

My husband gets monthly and quarterly fuel/safety bonuses, so those will also be added to the savings accounts (not for the summer though, those are being put aside for school clothing for the kids). During the summer months though, we need to save as much as we possibly can. We're really cutting down on a lot of luxuries so that we can reach our final goal of $15,000.

Stay tuned for more information on "The Big Project", including updates to the amount saved. (I will be trying to add a savings tracker to the side, but I think it will take some time for me to figure that one out).

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Fat Smash Diet Update, End of Week 3

Well, unfortunately I have done terribly on my diet since my husband has been home. I have fallen off the wagon. Not completely, but a lot.

My appetite is still pretty small, and I can definitely tell when it is time for me to stop eating, which I do most of the time. Yesterday, not so much. My husband made burgers for dinner, and they were delicious! Plus I had some beer too, but at least it was Bud light! Not a ton of calories there. I don't usually drink that often, but it was nice for a change.

I've gained a few pounds back, but I did expect that because I haven't been watching my diet at all. I will be going back to phase 1 for a few days after he leaves so that I can lose the weight I have gained since he has been home. Mother's day I think we'll be having some cake (he'll be gone, so it will be just me and the kids), but nothing else. I just thought it would be nice to have a bit of a treat. After I complete those few days, I will go to Phase 2 and complete the required two weeks.

I will be sure to keep you all updated on my progress! I'd still like to lose another 20lbs before mid July, for our trip to Canada.

Look for another Fat Smash Diet post on May 12th!

PayPerPost Update

I've really been on the fence regarding PayPerPost, and I think I have finally made a decision. Finally.

You'll probably be seeing a post or few, on my blog each day, depending on how much time I have. I did very well with PPP last year, and though the monetary amounts paid out have gone down quite a bit, I can still make some money.

My plan right now is to just do what I feel comfortable with. Even if it is one post per day, or three, or zero. With The Big Project needing funding (see a post for that on Friday, May 8th), I figured this would help offset the costs a little, or else give us a bit of wiggle room for spending money, or going out for pizza or something along those lines.

Every little bit helps, right?

Monday, May 04, 2009

The Lone Filmmaker

Good news everyone! Rob is back in business!!! Hooray!!

I've really missed his updates the last 5 months. I was actually worried that he had scrapped his whole project, but thankfully he has not.

Check out his youtube page for more information and to check out his videos. Drop him a line and give him some encouragement, he could use it. He's doing such a great job!!!


The Lone Filmmaker on YouTube

The Radiator Hotline

If you're looking to purchase a new Ford Truck Radiator, check out Radiator.com.

Their website is easy to use, secure, and very user-friendly. I was really impressed with the fact that they were able to find several shops in my area, and close to me at that, which would service my needs for a new radiator on my Ford vehicle. I don't own a Ford truck, but I do own a Ford Windstar SEL.

Radiator.com has fast, reliable service. They said on their website that in some cases, they may be able to have your part on your doorstep the very next day! And even better, sometimes the very same day! That is great service, if you ask me.

But why should you buy from them, instead of someone else? Because of their warranty and guarantee:

"We guarantee the best quality part for the best price. Many radiator companies out there import cheaply made parts to increase their margin. With our satisfaction guaranteed lifetime warranty, we cannot afford to sell parts that will break in a matter of a few years. That's why we sell quality OE style and aftermarket parts at great prices. Our direct to the customer set up eliminates the middleman and allows us to keep our prices low and our quality high. We also have warehouses all over the US, making our delivery times significantly less than the competitors."

Check out Radiator.com for ALL your radiator needs!

A Week? Oops!!!

Wow, I thought I had posted more in the last week.

We have been so busy. Wednesday we spent all day clearing out the closets and de-cluttering, we threw away so much crap!

Thursday we spent all day at our storage unit clearing it out and re-packing things to put back in our shed. We had rented a cargo van to bring stuff to goodwill and home, and there was so much stuff we had to make two trips. First we went through everything, and decided what went to goodwill. So we packed up the cargo van for goodwill, and was it ever packed! Then we went BACK to the storage unit and filled up the rest of the stuff for home. When we got home, we had to re-pack a few things from boxes and put them into our Rubbermaid/sterilite bins, and then they went in the shed. It was time to bring the cargo van back by then, so we left the garbage in the storage unit. My husband and son went back to the storage unit after the kids got back from school, and then cleared out the garbage. Whew, that was a chore! We were so tired Thursday night.

Friday we were blessed with gorgeous weather for our trip to the Woodland Park Zoo. We had so much fun! The kids got tired towards the end, but they were all troopers. We spent the rest of the weekend relaxing, and it was well deserved. Today we are heading to Lowes to get a few things for outside. I need to get some planters for the kids flower plants they planted at school, and my husband needs to get some bolts to fix the wheel barrow. Plus we need to go to the bank, I need to return some stuff at Bath and Body works. Ugh! we're so busy it seems.

Anyway, on Friday unfortunately we were not able to see the Tigers, Penguins and the Lion. They were all hiding. But we still got to see some neat animals.

I don't have much time to post, we're on our way out, but here are a few pictures for your enjoyment. It was hard to get really good shots because it was so bright outside, plus a lot of the animals were far away, and I shot a lot through glass. So please pardon my fuzzy pictures.







I wanted to add some more pictures, but that will have to be saved for another day. Blogger only allows me 6.

Be on the lookout for a post titled "The Big Project". I have to talk to my husband about posting about it, but it should be ok to post with some limited information. I hope to post that soon, within the next week or so.