Sunday, March 29, 2009

Bullies on Base

Today as we were getting ready to eat lunch (pizza) I realized we didn't have anything to drink to go with it. Sorry, I just can't drink water with pizza. So we drove over to the c-store to get a quick drink. I was dressed for church except I was wearing comfy flip-flops instead of my cute heels. Karah was dressed for around the house fun, and Vincent was mixed (dress pants, t-shirt, and flip flops). I sent Karah in to grab us drinks while I waited out in the van with Vincent.

It's not like it's huge and it wasn't super busy at the time. After a few minutes she comes out with the bag of drinks and we head home. As we're leaving the parking lot, Karah tells me some kids talked to her on the way in. According to her, it was a couple girls and a boy. Well, one girl told Karah "pay me a quarter and you won't get hurt" . Karah told me this and I was like "what?!?" She said that another girl started talking and Karah just ignored them and went inside. *good girl!* They weren't there when she came out.

Obviously nothing happened or else I'd have more to write about, but still. Always be mindful of where you're at, even in a relatively "safe" place. I'm glad that Karah kept her cool and ignored them, though I'm sure it could have gone differently. Thank God He had His hand of protection on her. God is so good!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Thank you all ....

I have enjoyed your participation in this giveaway and I hope to be able to do more in the future. Since it was a small number, we just did it by hand. I was the photographer while Vincent got the lucky job of drawing.
All the names entered in
The entrants
In the box waiting to be drawn
ready for drawing
Vincent is ready to draw
patiently waiting
Mixing it up
mixing it up
He took his job seriously and didn't peek
not looking
And the winner is ....
and the winner is...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The past week in shopping

I was able to get some pretty good deals lately and thought I would share what I was able to get.

Target shopping trip - 3/19
Okay, so I can't find the receipt for this one, but I know I didn't spend much. For the buddies bars I used (1) $3/3, (1) $2/2, (1) $1/1 coupons. The puzzle was $1 and I got it to cover the overage since they were 97c each, and was something I wanted anyhow. I don't know the exact price, but I know it was less than $2 for all, including tax.

K-mart shopping trip - 3/23
I took advantage of the double coupon event this week and while I didn't get as good a deal as Hip2Save, I think I did pretty well since I've only been getting the paper (& thereby coupons) for a couple weeks now. Everything I bought I had a coupon for that I was able to get doubled, except for the dog food (not pictured) because it was a $3.50 coupon but that's okay. :-)
Overall, I bought 18 items, saved $15.70 because of sales, saved $18.24 in coupons, for a total of $31.18 + tax.
(If the V8 looks a little deformed it's because the kids each had one before we came home.)

Walmart shopping trip - 3/24
Not a bad trip this time. I attempted to use the self checkout, but it wouldn't take the coupons so the cashier was gracious enough to take me up to hers and I was able to use them all. They all went through for the full amount resulting in: $20.61 before coupons, $20 in coupons, 61c + tax for a total of $1.63 oop.

Friday, March 20, 2009

The A-Maze-ing Giveaway

Welcome to my first giveaway! To tell you the truth, I was a little nervous about doing one as I'd rather have something I made up for grabs, but this is a bit of a last minute decision due to the Ultimate Blog Party :-) Hope you all enjoy it!

Up for grabs are 2 books of mazes.

1) The Amazing Alphabet Maze book - filled with 52 mazes, one maze for each letter - both capital and lower case

2) The Amazing 50 States Maze Book - filled with 50 mazes, one maze for each state

To enter, just leave a comment with a way to get in contact with you. Drawing will be held March 27, 2009 @ 6pm EST.

Ultimate Blog Party 2009
Thanks sis for pointing out my earlier mix up! :-)
Visit Sweeties Sweeps for winnable contests and sweepstakes.

Time To Party

Ultimate Blog Party 2009
Well, it's time for the Ultimate Blog Party 2009! I remember briefly coming across it last year, but was still fairly new to the blogging thing so I passed on it. This year I think I'll participate!

For those that don't know me, I am married to my wonderful husband of 5+ years - Brian - and between us we have three children - Karah (9), Brian Lee (8), Vincent (7). My husband I met because of the Marine Corps when I was still in. He has remained active duty while I am now a stay-at-home mom. (By the way, how come no one warned me it wouldn't be easy!) We currently live in Camp Lejeune, NC, though we will be moving later this year to Who-knows-where.

I love music! Listening, singing, playing piano, flute, or the occasional violin or trumpet - doesn't matter, I love it! I also enjoy crocheting, sewing, reading, crafts, and spending time & having fun with the family. I enjoy going to church and participating there as well as fellowshipping with like-minded believers.

Initially I started this blog looking as it like an online diary of sorts. I then decided to post a little more regularly and share with family in order to keep them updated on things around here. A military lifestyle usually revolves around frequent moves, and those are almost never close to where we grew up. I love to post about my family, good deals I've been able to get, and really just about my life in general.

Let's party!!!

I have decided to do a giveaway. The A-Maze-ing Giveaway will run until March 27th, so get your entries in now!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Our needs

On Saturday, March 7, 2009, the five of us had breakfast at Golden Corral. After leaving around 11am we went to a carwash and vacuumed & washed the Rendezvous. We were at the dealership by noon. Three and a half hours later we are driving off the lot in a 2009 Dodge Grand Caravan SXT. This is such an answer to prayer! Sure it's blue (I wanted black), but I do like the blue, and it came with features I wasn't planning on. The stow 'n' go was a must for me, along with the dual DVD players (for the trips we'll be making soon). It also came with remote start (YAY!), tri-zone climate control (driver, passenger, rear), push buttons to open the side doors, side door windows roll down, SIRIUS satellite radio, jacks & outlets in order to hook up a video game system or other video system. The other day I was actually able to use all the seats as I took myself & the 2 kids and my friend with her 3 children. We were able to talk to (and hear) each other relatively easily as the kids were all watching a movie. What a blessing!

It was something we had been praying about because we really needed a new(er) vehicle. (This is actually the first time either Brian or I have had a brand new vehicle before) Two of the tires really needed replacing along with the registration renewal / vechicle inspection coming up soon. We hope to be able to enjoy this for many years to come yet.

This is my only picture for now, but I will try to get more soon.
Matthew 6:8
"...for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him. "

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

CVS trip

Today I went to CVS and was able to take advantage of some of the deals they had going on there. My first stop I used my card and had two transactions. I had it all planned ahead of time what I was going to do and how I was going to do it, but when I got there they didn't have a couple things. So I modified and here's what I got.

Transaction #1 (my card)
1 - Hershey's Bliss Milk Chocolate on sale for $3.50 (from $4.79)
used $1/1 printable coupon

3 - Cadbury Mini Eggs on sale for $2 each (from $2.99 ea)
used $1.50/3 printable coupon

2 - Hershey's Kisses on sale for $1.88 ea (from $2.99ea)
1 - Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs on sale for $2 (from $2.99) (thought it was supposed to be $1.88 though)
used $1.50/3 printable coupon

Total of items - $15.26 (originally would have been $22.73)
Total coupons - $ 4.00
Total OOP - $11.26 + tax
Paid with $10EB from last week and $1.26 cash
Received $5EB for purchasing $15 of Hershey's (before coupons)

Seven bags of candy that after sales and EB received averages to $0.89 per bag!

Transaction #2 (my card)
2 - Progresso Soup on sale for $1.25ea (from $2.99ea)
2 - Progresso Soup on sale for $1.25ea (from $3.19ea)
used $2/4 printable coupon

1 - Colgate Max White on sale for $2.99 (from $3.29)

1 - Xtra laundry detergent on sale for $1.99 (from $2.79)

1 - Irish Spring hair & body wash for $4.99

Total of items - $14.97 (originally would have been $23.43)
Total coupons - $ 2.00
Total OOP - $12.97 + tax
Paid with $10EB and $2.97 cash
Received $4.99EB from Irish Spring, and $2.99EB from Colgate

Seven items that after sales and EB received averages to $0.71 per item!

Transaction #3 (Brian's card at a different location)
4 - Progresso Soup on sale for $1.25ea (from $3.19ea)
used $2/4 printable coupon

2 - Dry Idea deodorant on sale for $2.99ea (from $4.49ea)
used $2/1 coupon x2

1 - Irish Spring body wash for $4.99

Total of items - $15.97 (originally would have been $26.73)
Total coupons - $ 6.00
Total OOP - $9.97 + tax
Paid with $9EB and $0.97 cash
Received $4.99EB from Irish Spring, and $2EB ea from Dry Idea

Seven items that after sales and EB received averages to $0.14 per item!

All three transactions
Total sale price of all - $46.20 (from $72.89)
Savings from coupons - $12.00
Total OOP (out of pocket) - $34.20
Paid with $29EB and $5.20cash
Total Extra Bucks Received - $21.97
21 items after sales, coupons, and EB received averages to $0.58 per item!

This wasn't from CVS, but I had to include it since I got it today for FREE using the coupon in the ALL YOU magazine. The magazine is full of coupons and can get it at Walmart for $2.24 + tax. Even if you got it just for the FREE item (which I'm told it usually has at least one of) it more than makes up for it right there. The coupon was good for one free (up to $6.47) Rimmel Sexy Curves mascara - wouldn't you know it cost $6.47. Totally FREE! Yay!

Monday, March 16, 2009

My Old Man

Last Thursday my dear, wonderful husband of just over 5 years turned ... 30! There, I said it. He is officially an "old man". :-) (I have to enjoy it while I can for I will soon be joining him!)
Not that either of us really consider 30 old. The balloons (which used 2 small packages of crackers as the weight) were sent to him from his parents. You'll notice in this next picture that he seems to be in bed still (at like 1pm). Since it was his birthday, he wanted to sleep in and then be able to watch tv or play video games and still be in bed. He was entitled, so we had a sleepover on the pullout bed and relaxed most of the day.
Brian on the phone with his parents as he opens his card. It says:
Hey, I know where you can get a hot, steamy shower and a nice rubdown on your birthday ...
[open card]
Car Wash! Have fun! [while it plays "Car Wash" by Norman Whitfield]
They also sent him a $25 gift card for Olive Garden

We did the rest of the cards & presents on Friday night when Brian Lee would be here to see as well. This is the back from the card I gave him which talks about The Truth of Turning 30

Here he is with the card from the kids. It says:
Dad - At last! There's a talking action figure for people your age!
[open card & hear "OOOOOOWWWW! My back! Oh! Oh man! I gotta lay down"]
Try not to think about it, and have a happy birthday!

Brian as he's opening his presents. These are actually pics of the first three he opened. If you're wondering about his facial expression, it's the fact that I double wrapped his presents. hehe
Wrapped inside these were Star Wars The Force Unleashed for DS, Lego Star Wars The Complete Saga for DS, and the NCIS Official Soundtrack. (We love NCIS!)

The kids during a brief intermission as I go to grab more presents

Inside a Pirates of the Carribbean gift bag he found a Transformers bubble bath (hey, Optimus Prime's arms move!), and a Love Monkey webkinz.
(Give ya three guesses who chose those items)

The final present! He had to close his eyes for this one while we prepared to give it to him. Upon opening his eyes he joked that it was probably a party sub. lol

Not a party sub! An Anakin Skywalker lightsaber!

He couldn't wait to get it open. He is using his engraved dogtag to open the box because he didn't want to wait for scissors or a knife. (The dogtags were another birthday present given from me along with a more personal card - I have the matching dogtag).

The happy birthday boy!

It's open!

A stand that came with it in order to display it. It is also wall mountable, so he was looking up at the wall, thinking about replacing the candle display we have there.
(Thinking was all that was done)

Yes the batteries are in and it is turned on...

Here's a better picture with the overhead lights turned off. It's pretty bright, that's for sure.

Daddy had his lightsaber so the kids got theirs in order to "fight back"

Nope, I don't think he likes it at all ... :-)

Had to include this pic - just because!

So after it's all said and done, yes I'm married to an old man, but that's okay. As long as he doesn't act old, he can be as old as he wants :)

Happy 30th Birthday Brian!!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

I'm Still Here!!!

Wow, has it really been almost 2 months since I last posted anything? Yikes! Much has been going on during that time frame, though my mind is a bit fuzzy on everything. I will try to post what I can on separate posts otherwise this would be super-duper long.

The reason for this post is that I have recently been introduced to CVS via a blog here & there (mostly here) and am quite excited about the possible savings options. Now that I'm getting a feel for how it works, I'm all giddy!

So here's what I got today...

3 for $10
1 - Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Shampoo (13 0z)
(originally $4.29, sale $3.34, saved 95¢)
1 - Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Conditioner (13 0z)
(originally $4.29, sale $3.33, saved 96¢)
1 - Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Leave-in Conditioner (10.2 oz)
(originally $6.29, sale $3.33, saved $2.96)

3 for $10
1 - Lucky Charms (11.5 oz)
(originally $4.49, sale $3.34, saved $1.15)
1 - Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cereal Bars (6 bars)
(originally $3.99, sale $3.33, saved 66¢)
1 - Nature Valley Oats & Honey Granola Bars (12 bars)
(originally $4.19, sale $3.33, saved 86¢)

1 - Palmolive Oxy Plus (10 oz)
(originally $1.59, sale $1.49, saved 49¢)

1 - Dial for Men (3 bars)
(originally $2.79, sale $1.99, saved 80¢)

1 - Oral-B floss (55 yds)
(originally $3.99, sale $2.99, saved $1.00)

1 - Always Infinity Regular (18 ct)
(originally $5.99, sale N/A, saved $0.00)

1 - Aquafina water (20 oz)
(originally $1.49, sale N/A, saved $0.00)
[the kids were thirsty :-) ]

- Semi-totals
originally $43.39, sale $33.95, saved $9.44

Coupons used for ...
- Dial 35¢/1 (paper maybe? I don't remember)
- Lucky Charms 55¢/1 (printable)
- Nature Valley 60¢/1 (printable)
- Always Infinity $1/1 (coupon came with free sample)
- Extra Bucks from last week $4.99
Total coupon savings - $7.49

originally $43.39, sale $33.95, coupons $7.49, spent $26.46, saved $16.93

Extra Bucks received from this transaction

- General Mills (includes Nature Valley) spend $10, get $5eb
- Maybeline (includes Garnier) spend $10, get $5eb
- Crest (includes Oral-B) buy 1, get $2eb
- Palmolive buy 1 get $1eb
- Always buy 1 get $2eb
Total - $15 eb to use on future purchases

$26.46 spent
-$15.00 ebs received
$11.46 equivalent

Thank you, Hadias, for your wonderful posting!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

Yesterday we got some snow which - from what I hear - is rare around here. We had a lot of fun in it. This is the sign coming on to base early afternoon. It snowed more later that evening.

Our house and yard was covered in snow when we came home.
Karah (on the left) & Vincent made snow angels first thing
Having a little romp in the snow with daddy. Vincent attempting to throw a snowball at me
(it wasn't a little powdery)
Karah taking her turn trying to get me with a snowball
While inside warming up, the kids & Penny look across the street at the ensuing snowball fight.
Penny loved the snow and kept wanting us to throw snowballs so she could catch/fetch/eat them.
I've been hit!
(by Brian)
What else was I to do but get him back? ;-)
We ended up on the ground and somehow got all tangled up with Penny's leash.

Today the snow started melting making it stick together better so the kids took advantage of it and decided to make a snowman. Here they are getting a good base.
Lift with your knees, not your back.
(Actually, I had to help them lift this one because they couldn't get it up themselves)
Here's the head
Vincent adding a personal touch - he couldn't have a bald snowman :-) Karah adding her personal touch - didn't want it to have cold hands :D
Voila! Snowman complete!

And in case you're wondering, we used a baby carrot for the nose, and some Rubik's cube pieces for the eyes and buttons.