Tuesday, June 21, 2011

An Ode To Liana

Dear Lia
You are one cool girl.
When you were born, you rocked our world.
As time goes by, your beauty grows.
Your love for life and others shows.
Your eyes of blue convey everything you feel,
Although some feelings aren't true...
For you they are real.
Your fashion sense is all it's own.
Your falls are legendary in our home.
Your cuddles
 Your kisses
Your sweet playfulness,
Your cheezing,
Your dancing,
And your giggles are the best.
You're a princess now and forever,
 With a heart of gold so pure.
Of our love you can be certain,
Now and forevermore.

Happy Birthday to our beautiful girl! Today is truly a day to celebrate!!!

Monday, June 20, 2011


Many of the larger restaurant chains have E-clubs. You sign up for random news and deals by giving them your information. Sometimes a little information on your kids. Because we don't eat out a whole lot, the periodic coupons are not necessarily something that I wait to see in my inbox. There are 2 times a year, though, when I get excited for these clubs.

1. My E-club 'Anniversary'
2. My Birthday

The latter of the two happens to be this week. The big 3-0! Yes, I am excited.

I'd been wondering when these awesome coupons were going to be showing up in my inbox. This morning as I was deleting over 100 unnecessary e-mails, I stumbled upon them. Apparently, they didn't make it to my Blackberry, and since that's nearly the only method of checking my e-mail that I currently use...you get the picture.

So there they were. And I was excited! Here's a list:

McAlister's- $5 off next meal
Chili's- Free brownie sundae
Arby's- Free shake with purchase
Schlotzsky's- Free small sandwich
Joe's Crab Shack- Free dessert
Buffalo Wild Wings- Free dessert
IHOP- Free Rooty Tooty Fresh & Fruity
Mimi's Cafe- Free Entree with purchase of entree & 2 drinks
First Watch- Free Entree
Aunt Annie's Pretzel's- Buy 1 Get 1 Free
Spaghetti Warehouse- Free Spaghetti & Dessert
Macaroni Grill- Free Dessert
Marble Slab- Free Ice Cream Cone

Do you have a favorite restaurant? Or one that you would go to if it were free? See if they have an E-club!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Cereal is not something we eat on a regular basis in my house. We are more eggs and fruit, or toast and fruit kind of people.  Not that my kids won't eat it, because they love cereal. I just buy it when it goes on sale and I have a coupon or a deal that will make it worthwhile.

Lately Kellogg's has been offering some GREAT incentives for buying their cereals and snacks. One of their recent rebate (if you will) programs is a $10 Gas Card with the purchase of 10 boxes of cereal. Simply click here and it will take you to the landing page for the promotion. Make sure to read the fine print. 10oz boxes or more and only certain kinds.

Then, when you see a great sale on cereal, buy as many as your budget allows! Clip 10 UPC's, send them in and done! You don't have to include the receipt which is good because I always loose mine. The best part, is you can get up to 5 of these rebates through the end of the year. I'm glad the kids love Raisin Bran!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

That Went Fast

Wow, that coupon went like hot cakes. Hopefully you were able to print it before it was gone!

*UPDATED LINK* Deal For Tulsans

Reasor's, which I have mentioned oh so many times, is at it again. They have a 12 hour sale every so often which may or may not have things that I want. This time it most definitely has things I want!

First, the cheese. It's not organic, but it is decent cheese. And only $1 for an 8 ounce bag. That's a stock up price for sure!

Second, the Cape Cod Chips. YUM. If you 'Like' Cape Cod Chips on Facebook, you can print out a $1.00 off 2 bags coupon. By hitting the back button, you can print it twice. That would make them $2.50 for 2 bags.

And last, Towne House Crackers. If you log onto Kellogg's Snackpicks website I linked it to the promotions page. Sign up to be able to print out their coupons. The boxes of crackers are 2 for $3. With the printable coupon (print it twice, buy 4 boxes) it makes them $1 a piece (make sure you get the kind with the Cars 2 code on the front). THEN!!!! Sign up for this Kellogg's promotion and enter the 4 codes to receive a $5 gas card.

Happy Dealing!

Friday, June 10, 2011

*Giveaway* Winner!

Wow, seriously I have no words. I have the best readers ever! I loved the ideas (which I will pass along to Monica) for fundraising. I almost cried at some of the responses. The encouraging words and stories of triumph are wonderful. Thank you for being a part of this journey, and for your prayers for the Johnson family.

Now to the fun part! The winner of the t-shirt according to random.org is....

The Life of the Vick Family!!!!

Which is quite awesome considering her brother has adopted a little girl and is in the process of adopting their second child. Both from Ethiopia! I'll be tweeting you to find out your size & color so Monica can get it ordered.

I am hoping to post updates from Monica from time to time. But you can view them as soon as she posts them by following her blog. I know I do (peer pressure peer pressure peer pressure).

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Adoption & A *Giveaway*

 Jon and I have often talked of adopting 1 or 2 little kids when our kids are a bit older. We've always felt like we would make great parents to lots of kids. Some days when my kids are at each others' throats I feel differently, but that desire always remains, simmering under the surface. Secretly, I look at little kids on the news that need parents and wonder if they're ours. Which leads me to my post today, that has nothing to do with saving money, but everything to do with giving it.

I have known Monica since high school. We had lots of classes together, but more importantly we were on the tennis team together. She is now happily married and living in Tennessee with her hubby Tommy and their adorable son (who is a minor and not my kiddo, so will remain nameless on my blog hehe). Currently they are walking through the journey of adoption. I so admire that. She's really doing it.

The cost is staggering in my mind. $30,000. But they are raising money all kinds of ways. They are selling t-shirts, African coffees, jewelry, homemade cards, brownies, candy, wristbands and more in their local community.Tommy is a teacher and coach. This is a picture of their shirt that you can buy for the amazingly low price of $10. All proceeds go towards their adoption.

Monica's blog is Six Million Minus One. It's all about this journey that they're on. The joys, the obstacles and the opportunities that people have to be a part of what they're doing. Check out and follow her blog. You will love it. Her heart is amazing, and the faith she and Tommy have in the Lord leading them through their journey is nothing short of inspiring.

And buy a t-shirt...maybe some earrings too ;)

Today I'm going to give away one of their t-shirts!!!! The winner will get to pick the size and color (pictured above). All you have to do to enter, leave a comment below. If you have an idea for fundraising, put it down. If you have words of encouragement, by all means! Or you can just put your favorite day of the week! I'm so excited for this giveaway. The winner will be announced Friday at Noon.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Free Summer Fun

All throughout Tulsa and Jenks, there are splash pads. It's a wonderful thing, since the temps get over 100 degrees many days during summer. When it's that hot, even the oven baked wind can't cool you off. You need water. That's why I enjoy the splash pads so much.
This is actually a fountain.  The splash pads have more things than just water shooting up. My darlins' still love it. They like to kick it.
Lay on it.
Jump over it.
During the summer days, my swim bag goes with me in the car wherever we go. It's packed with suits, towels, sunscreen, goggles and floaties. I also like to take a snack and drinks whenever we leave the house. If we happen by a splash pad and we have time to spare, we are completely prepared. It's a great free activity!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

5 Ways To Keep Your A/C Bills Lower

Every time the air kicks on, I cringe. I hear dollars. Not that it costs an extravagant amount, but as the Oklahoma days get hotter, our bills get bigger. There are a few things that I try to do which helps keep the a/c from running all day.

*First* I run the dryer at night. Every bit of heat coming out of that baby adds to the house's temperature. That means I don't do one full day of laundry. Instead I do a load each evening, and fold it in the morning. Sometimes two. If I need to do some during the day, I try to hang a load outside.

*Second* I lower the temperature at night to 74 degrees, then raise it to 78 during the day. The a/c doesn't have a hard time keeping it there while we're all sleeping, and then it helps the house be cool during the day.

*Third* I try to keep the kids in or out. No in and out. It means thinking ahead a little bit. I make sure the kids are suitably dressed for the heat, drinks and sunscreen are in hand and towels are present. That helps limit how many times the door is opened and closed.

*Fourth* I plan my days. We have a blow up pool, so a lot of the kids' time is spent in there. I try to plan what days are total outside days and have 1 day a week that is indoors. There hasn't been rain, so it works. When we're inside, we play card games like Go Fish, board games, color, have 'toy time' and play the Wii. It's rarely boring. On outdoor days, we play in the pool, catch butterflies (or frogs, or turtles), swing and make a waterslide out of the playset slide.

*Fifth* I keep the blinds shut. I love the sunshine. I love the beauty of summer. I don't like the heat that comes in from the sun. So during spring and fall, the windows are open, the blinds are pulled. But when it starts being hot, they stay shut. We have Levlor blinds, which are heavy and really keep out the sun. The girls' room gets the hottest sun during the day, though, so I plan on putting blackout curtain up in their room.

Stay cool and keep the bills low!

Monday, June 6, 2011

A Twist On PB&J

Peanut Butter & Jelly is a massive hit in my home. I think that's pretty true for many homes with small children. If Isabella gets sent a sandwich, 9 times out of 10 it's a PB&J. If we have leftover ham she'll take that because she loves ham. But I rarely buy lunchmeat for many reasons.

Over the years, I've made a few changes. Jelly is great, but honey is even better! First it's better for the kids, but also it has an amazing flavor. We use honey on our pancakes instead of syrup, to sweeten smoothies, on top of toast, to sweeten cereals...the list is endless.

Sometimes I feel bad making the kids just a sandwich, so last night I decided to mix it up. PB, Honey & Strawberry Quesadillas. Oh they were amazing.
Look at the honey and peanut butter melted together into ooey gooey goodness.
Add a carrot and you've got a yummy meal. The kids loved it. When they eat in silence, you know it's good.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Doughnut Day!

Who doesn't love a piece of dough deep fried in oil and topped with a sugary confection? I sure know I do!

My favorite doughnuts are one with cream filling. Not pudding, but cream. Light, but intensely sweet. I told you, I have a MAJOR sweet tooth. I'm working on getting that under control.

Well today happens to be National Doughnut Day. If you have a Krispy Kreme nearby stop in for a free doughnut. Supposedly one of your choice. If it were my choice, I'd take the Oreo one. Yummo!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

A Crazy Month

I realize it's been nearly 2 weeks since I have posted anything. In my defense, May was CA-RAY-ZEEEEEE!

My Mom came to visit May 3rd and stayed for a week. She left on the 9th and Jon left Wednesday the 11th for Minneapolis, MN. He got home the 15th and Mom C. got here on the 18th for a 10 day visit. The first weekend she was here, Dad C. flew in from Alaska for a 2 day visit. It's his 2nd visit since we've been here.

2 Things: 1 My house hasn't really been thoroughly cleaned for nearly a month. 2 I am 22 days away from being 30. Totally unrelated, but it's on my mind since today is the first month of my birthday month.

I didn't feel older until my oldest graduated 2nd grade. This is Isabella with her teacher, Mrs. Miller.

Not the most flattering of Isabella, but she tends to do weird faces all the time. It's been amazing to watch her grow as a young lady before my eyes. I completely teared up at her Awards Ceremony.

Time waits for no one! If you'll excuse me, I have some crazy kiddos to watch splash in the pool. I love summer!