Thursday, January 27, 2011

Pointless Post #12-- Pot Drumming

The other day my oldest daughter was upset because we DID NOT go to Best Buy. There is a Best Buy in our area that sells musical instruments. My daughter LOVES to go in and play the electric drums. She was in tears when we told her we didn't have time.

When we came home I told her we would make a drum when she got up from her nap. She then informed me that she wanted to make a lot of different drums with different sounds. As she was napping, I thought of different ways to make drums-- But then, a cartoon light bulb went off in my head-- I remembered the old saying "banging on pots and pans". Well, I just have to say---THIS WORKS GREAT! She was soooo happy to bang on the pots and hear all of their different sounds. I also gave her the lids as the cymbals. She was convinced that she was playing "The Cat in the Hat" theme song from PBS Kids

She had so much fun, and the best part, I was able to put everything back in the cupboards and there was no mess. Don't get me wrong, I love doing crafts with the kids, but sometimes it is nice to do something that doesn't require a lot of clean up.

Warning: This activity is very LOUD

Monday, January 24, 2011

Pointless Post #11 -- Yummy Starbucks!

OK---I have a little problem. For Christmas, I asked for Starbucks gift cards, and I was lucky enough to receive a couple. Although I am not a big coffee drinker, I do enjoy Chai Tea Latte and the occasional Peppermint Mocha (which is seasonal, so I should drink as much as possible while it is out----right?). Well---here is my problem----since I have these gift cards, I feel the need to use them whenever I am out and see a Starbucks (which is everywhere: the mall, Target, just on the side of the road). They are burning a hole in my pocket, but I don't want to spend them all at once. The second part of my problem is I don't want to start the Starbucks habit, because---well, I really enjoy having money for things like---food and a mortgage.

The other day I got a drink while we were at the mall and guess what? When I came home I found this wonderful coupon in the mail. Being a Starbucks Reward card member is paying off!

I must say, when I take that first sip of my warm Chai Tea Latte, my mind relaxes and all of my stresses melt away. This is normal---right ;) Oh, and did you know that if you don't want your drink scalding hot, you can order it at a lower temperature? I enjoy my drinks at 150 degrees :)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Pointless Post #10-- Messless Mixes

It's 8:00 in the morning and I am already making chicken enchiladas and corn bread. No, I'm not crazy! I'm actually making dinner for a friend who recently had a baby. I also have the added benefit of NOT needing to make dinner for us tonight because, it will already be done. Plus, I am using a corn bread mix--I'm not making it from scratch :)

When I make mixes (muffins, pancakes, etc), I found that if I make the mix in my big Oxo measuring cup (4 cups)--it not only saves on dishes, but it also makes the mix easier to pour and creates less of a mess.

For today's mix, I started with a 1/2 cup of milk in the measuring cup--then I added one egg and beat it in the measuring cup with the milk--then I added the muffin mix. I stirred it all in the measuring cup. Now, I only have one dish to clean--well, two if you count the fork I used for stirring!

I know this doesn't work for everything. But, it's perfect for smaller mixes that only need to be stirred with a fork!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Pointless Post #9-- Freezing Meat

When my husband and I got married, we purchased a FoodSaver from Sam's Club. We don't use it on all of our frozen items, but one thing that I LOVE having it for is storing meat. Now I feel like we can safely buy bulk ground beef and turkey and it won't go bad (or get freezer burn) before we have the opportunity to use it.

A couple of years ago, we found another benefit of using the FoodSaver---freezer storage! Up until last month, we only had the freezer that is connected to our refrigerator (which is SMALL)---so we had to be creative. My husband discovered if he sealed the meat in lager package than normal, after it was vacuum sealed, it gave us room to smash it----that evolved to rolling it thin with the rolling pin. Since we only use our ground meats for things like spaghetti sauce, meatloaf and tacos, it works perfectly! Not only does it take up A LOT less room----the meat also thaws A LOT quicker!

Yesterday, I had to finish sealing four pounds of ground beef---see the above picture (the ground beef is stored on the right side).

Monday, January 17, 2011

Pointless Post #8---Children's Place Offers

So, shortly after I posted my last blog entry, I got another e-mail deal. This one is from Children's Place. The offer is Free Shipping on ALL orders, plus an additional 20% off :) Unfortunately, this deal is only for today.

Free Shipping Promo Code: FSJANUARY2011

20% Off Promo Code: P7C2011

Once again, I don't need anything----but you might! Enjoy!

In the future, if I posts deals, I will try to combine them into one post :)

Pointless Post #7-- Fisher Price Free Shipping

Today, I got an offer in my e-mail that I thought I should share with my fans! The Fisher Price Store is offering FREE SHIPPING for online orders---NO MINIMUM PURCHASE required! A lot of stores will offer free shipping with a $50 purchase, but I really enjoy when they don't put restrictions on what you need to purchase. I think I am in the minority because I don't buy online frequently---specifically because of the added shipping costs (once again, I am cheap and I'll admit it!).

Although, I don't need anything from Fisher Price right now---you might---so here's the promo code: HUGSM. This offer expires January 28, 2011.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Pointless Post #6-- Library Books on Sale

Today while my oldest daughter was in school, my younger daughter and I went to the library for a play date. We arrived a little early, so I decided to browse the library gift shop while we were waiting. Although I always knew the gift shop was there, I never went in before--library memorabilia was not high on the list of things I needed. Today, I discovered that they actually SELL a lot of kids' books there---and they are cheap and in really good condition! We bought three Disney books for $0.75 ($0.25 apiece)--those are garage sale prices!

We read a lot in our house and I am always looking for new books--in fact I just bought two new books out of the Target dollar aisle yesterday. Right now, my girls LOVE books and reading--and I want to encourage them to read as much as possible. So whenever I can find a good deal on something NEW to read, I pick it up. The girls each get two books read to them a night. Yes---we will always have our old stand-bys---the books we have already read a thousand times---which I am sure we will read a thousand more times. But having a new book to throw in every once in a while helps to break of the monotony.

I love the library for many reason---free books, great selection, free dvd's, puzzles and games for the girls, story time, and now----book sales! Check out your library---maybe it offers the same thing. It couldn't hurt to ask! :)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Pointless Post #5---Hoodie Found!!

If I would have known that it would be this easy, I would have started a blog last month. Yesterday, I posted about my daughter's lost hoodie and how I was going to suck it up and buy a new one----tomorrow (Thursday). Tonight, as I was looking for Flynn Rider, Rapunzel's prince, I found the hoodie!! It was at the back of my daughter's dresser on the floor. I guess it got caught behind the actual drawer and eventually fell on the floor (I know for a fact it was not always there).

My advice for the day----If you are missing something, start a blog. You will more than likely find the missing item the next day.

As of tonight, Flynn is still missing. I'm not worried though, he can't be too far away---he has never left the house :)

(Don't worry, all of my posts will not be lost and found posts--I was just amused by today's turn of events. I also didn't have a topic for today until this happened.)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Pointless Post #4-- The Missing Sweatshirt

Missing: Pink hoodie with preschool logo (as seen above)
Last seen: November 27, 2010

For the past month I have been looking for my daughters pink hoodie. I last remember seeing it at Spaghetti Warehouse, where I had her remove it so she didn't get sauce all over it. Since I have realized it was gone, I have become an absolute wacko! This missing sweatshirt is consuming me. I have even had dreams about it!

Why does this bother me so much? Well, it's because I know where EVERYTHING is! It's my job, and I'm good at it. Now if you came to my house, you wouldn't guess it, but everything has its place here. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a super neat freak with an exceptionally organized house. It's more of an organized chaos. If you came to my house, YOU would more than likely not be able to just randomly stumble upon something you were looking for---But ME, I know where it is, and it may not always make sense---this drives my husband nuts.

Anyway, I have gone through all of the drawers and closets in the house. I have called Spaghetti Warehouse--not once, but twice (yep--wacko!). I have called various friends and family members and looked in the cars and garage. This hoodie has disappeared for good!

The preschool will be placing another sweatshirt order on Thursday. I guess I am finally going to have to admit that the one we had is gone--and suck it up and buy a new one. This makes a money saving mommy cringe.....

Monday, January 10, 2011

Pointless Post #3--Coupons

On Mondays while my oldest daughter is at school, my younger daughter and I clip coupons. I clip coupons for things that we need, and she clips out pictures of things that she likes---today she clipped out checks with various Disney characters on them, a picture of a "mommy" for me, and pudding for daddy. It's a lot of fun to see what catches her eye, but it's also a great way for her to practice her skills with the scissors.

When I became a stay at home mom, I started clipping coupons. Now, don't get me wrong---I am nothing like the crazy couponers on the TLC show "Extreme Couponing". I don't spend 70 hours a week finding deals, I don't have a room with a "stock pile", and most importantly, I don't have a cool and creative couponing name. I guess if I had to give myself one, it would be Cautiously Couponing Colleen. This means, I don't clip coupons for things we don't regularly need or use. I think my coupon book is probably set up a little different from the average coupon book too. My first opening is for things we always buy on a regular basis. This is the main area that I get all of my coupons from. My second opening is for grocery items that I may need sometimes, but don't buy regularly. My third opening is for household products that we may need sometimes, but don't buy regularly. And my fourth opening is for medicines---which we never know if we will need them or not, so they are just good to have on hand. I also have two openings towards the end of my book---one is for store discounts (20% off at Children's Place, $10 off at Bath and Body), and the other is for restaurant coupons. I organize my coupons by expiration date in each of the openings---it makes it easy to cycle through them and get rid of them once they have expired. Now, I know this method probably doesn't work best for everyone, but it really helps me stay on track and not buy things just because they are a good deal.

So, although I don't get 6 carts of food for $10, I feel that I help my family save a little bit of money at a time by buying what we need and use. After all, saving $5 on a shopping trip is better than saving $0 :) Every little bit helps!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Pointless Post #2-- Figuring It All Out

OK--so maybe I haven't figured it ALL out, but I have at least figured out how to create a Facebook organization page and get my blog posts to automatically post :) Sorry to my first 5 fans for the multiple posts---I promise I won't be too annoying in the future.

If you are interested, I created a blog using Blogger. Then, I used Google Feedburner to create an account to track the traffic on my blog. After that was all set up, I created an official Facebook for the site. It took me a while to figure out how to get my blog to post to the new Facebook account, but I finally did it! If you are interested, just create a "Notes" tab--by clicking a new tab and selecting "Notes". Once the tab is created, there is a link on the lower right side of the page where you can import a blog feed. It's really easy once it's all figured out!

Photo: The top circle is where you add a new tab--then select "Notes"---The bottom circle is where you add your RSS feed.

Pointless Post #1--Welcome!

The New Year is beginning and I feel the need to try something new. As a stay-at-home mom, I need an outlet, a way to express myself. I don't want to have to post about just any one thing though. I have tried blogs in the past, a family blog....a budgeting blog....but they have all fizzled over the years. Today, I realized that maybe I just need to have a blog about NOTHING----just random thought from my day. Someone out there might find them useful, others may find them pointless, but hopefully they will be somewhat enjoyable and maybe even informative. I must warn you, I'm not perfect----DO NOT expect perfection from this blog. I will be writing while kids are running around, in between loads of laundry, when I have a free time during dinner prep, etc---so I guarantee that there will be typos galore. Hopefully, you can see past that and just have fun!