First Wal-Mart Pick Up Order

With one kid in a cast and most comfortable on her belly, a crazy three year old, and a crying 6 month old grocery shopping is the last thing I want to do. After being away from home for two weeks, however, I really didn’t have a choice.

It had to be done.

Thankfully, during the hours in which I should have been sleeping and was elevating a baby’s head so she didn’t spit up and choke in her sleep, I remembered that Wal-Mart now offered grocery pick up. With my trusty cell phone I pulled up their app and remembered to search for a coupon code (half the battle of budget cutting).

First timers get a 10 off 50 coupon! Lucky sleep deprived me!

Normally, I prefer to go to the store and look for items that are marked down as well as use coupons, but with our need being mostly fresh stuff and all the chaos that comes with the kids this was the best choice. Budget friendly and sanity saving.

Win win if you ask me.

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I managed to get everything pictured above for $78.12 after the coupon code. Best of all, I did all my shopping while the baby nursed from the comfort of my own couch. I did kind of feel bad for the girls that loaded everything in the rain, but I was thankful for not having to deal with kids and groceries in it.

I tried to stick to items that we needed. Most of it is for specific recipes that I have planned out for the week on the Mealime app (check it out if you haven’t yet it’s awesome), and the rest is for other meals/snacks.

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If you haven’t seen the Mealime app that I mentioned above, I highly recommend it. I started using it about a month before we left for Maryland and fell in love. I did decide to check out the paid version, which is $5 a month, but the free version is great.

It’s very userfriendly from start to finish. It has a large selection of recipes you can choose from. After you have your meals planned it creates a grocery list for you.

We had the sloppy joes tonight. I wasn’t too impressed, but they were okay. If I make it again I’ll probably tweak the recipe a little. I think it needed a little more zing (vinegar) for my family.

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Last but not least, I feel proud of myself for the small savings I provided my family today. I really didn’t feel like cooking. Life has been extra draining and most days I feel like I’m running on empty the moment my eyes pop open.

I almost used the excuse of needing groceries as a way to get out of finding something and then cooking it guilt free. After a bit of back and forth with myself I finally started hunting through the fridge and cabinets. I’m not a huge fan of fish sticks, but they were available and quick.

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Hopefully tomorrow is an easier day. Probably not, but one can hope, right?

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Getting Back In The Budget Cutting Groove

It’s long overdue, but I think it’s time I get back into my budget cutting groove. Between my crazy pregnancy, delivery, recovery, two herniated discs, and now surgery recovery for our oldest daughter, I’m hoping our family has been through enough lately and we’re headed for a calm period for at least a few weeks.

I decided to start with the laundry room. It’s a very small room right off my dining room/kitchen area. Since our youngest daughter came along it has also served as her clothing storage area. None of this is good for the appearance of the dining room/kitchen.

We can’t even hide it! It’s all right there as soon as you walk through the doorway. And, if you let it go too long, you can see it from the living room.

This is the case currently.

It wasn’t a very welcoming site after being in Maryland for two weeks for our daughter’s surgery. We got in last night around 2 am and instead of being able to plop down, stretch, and relax a bit, it was just stressful. I wanted to start right then but I was so tired my body wouldn’t cooperate.

However, I made a small dent throughout the day between taking care of everyone. The baby is in that never-put-me-down-again-please-or-I-will-scream-until-you-cry phase so it’s not easy. I need to declutter some more, but it’s a start.

One of my next tasks is to fix the curtains on this window. It makes the dining room look pretty bad with the curtains tied up like that. I did it as a temporary fix two years ago. I think I’ve come up with a budget-friendly idea that I’ll share later on.

Here is what I was left with after clearing out this area that I still need to do something with. Some will be going to where it belongs, some will be finding a new home, some will hopefully make us come clutter money, some will be donated/passed on, and some will likely be trashed.

We Made It!

It has been quite a while since I’ve posted here and I’m very pleased to be updating AFTER the delivery of our baby girl. I won’t go into huge detail, but I ended up having percreta. The placenta grew through my uterus and burrowed deep into my cervix. To reduce the risk to my life both my uterus and cervix were removed. Recovery has been slow but I’m trying not to push it even though I’m ready to get back to life.

Still got my mind set to saving money. With a partial hysterectomy I’ll save money by no longer buying monthly products. Also, I’ll be nursing/pumping so no formula cost.

Yay me!

My little percreta princess born 3/5 ♡♡♡

Free Oranges

I recently downloaded the Coupons.com app and I’m pretty happy with it so far. Fairly often they put out a rebate or two for free items. So far I’ve gotten free bread and free tomatoes. I need to grab some stuff from the store so I decided to check and just discovered they’ve added a new rebate for up to $2 In fresh oranges. Just wanted to share quickly for anyone else interested.

It does take a little while for the rebate to process and you need to have a PayPal to receive it.

January 19th, 2018

Day 19 of 2018 and I’ve missed blogging.

It has been a long, exciting and painful week since I last posted. A few times I started to sit down and try to type something up, but the truth is I have been completely drained. Between everyday life, working on my android developer class, and being in pain. I don’t have much left in me at night. Truthfully, I wouldn’t be typing this now if I hadn’t needed desperately to floss my teeth.

Yes, floss my teeth.

I don’t know if it’s pregnancy, or if it’s just where I’ve gotten so used to using my water flosser every night, but if I don’t floss before bed my gums ache something awful. I’m sure this isn’t all that interesting to you, but I bought an off brand water flosser just a couple months ago because I have weird spacing in my back teeth that make it hard to floss. Since using the water flosser, if I go even a day without the water flosser I can tell there is food and gunk left in there and it kills my mouth. The regular old string floss just doesn’t work for me.

Or, maybe I need to go to the dentist.

Anyway, I haven’t been blogging for long, but I really missed it this past week. It helps keep me focused and motivates me to find and execute new and old ways of saving money. Something I’ve not been doing very well with this past week. My pelvic pain is out of control. I can barely clean and walking in a grocery store is pretty much impossible. The hubby has been having to pick up a tremendous amount of slack from me lately.

I’m not beating myself up about it, however. I have a lot going on physically and the hubby has the weight of the world on his shoulders. We’re doing the best we can under the circumstances. There are many good things I can’t wait to share with you from this week though. So, on to the good stuff…

Hello Rev A Shelf

We finally (by we I mean the hubby) managed to get my pot/pan organizer installed. I don’t know where this thing has been all my life, but I’m so glad it’s here now. It holds all of my pots/pans, except for my bake ware, and it’s so easy to use.

I started looking up the other types of organizers they have and almost fell out of my seat. These things are so, so expensive. I didn’t realize just how good of a deal the hubby got when he managed to pick this up from a Facebook yard sale site for only $40 until today. The Rev A Shelf stuff is super nice, but also super expensive.

If you find yourself in need of cabinet organizers, make sure you check locally first. On our local buy and sell pages there are a ton of pallet sellers that usually have stuff like this. This is where this came from actually. Just make sure they verify all the parts are there and the item is working. Lesson learned after buying a “new” cheap rice cooker. It ended up in the trash.

My Green Thumb

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So, I don’t really have a green thumb. Typically, everything I try to grow dies because I eventually forget it even exists. My green onions and celery, however, are growing pretty well. The first day I noticed that my green onions were taller than the glass I couldn’t stop pointing it out to the daughter and hubby. I had no idea you could even regrow what would be normally tossed out as scraps.

Breakfast Bar Fake Out

Last weekend, I woke up one morning and came downstairs with the toddler as usual. Hubby was already up and after greeting us he asked if I wanted to go out for breakfast. My first instinct was to say yes, enthusiastically I’ll add. I love, love, love breakfast bars and we very rarely go. As in, the last time we were at a breakfast bar the toddler was only a few months old. He’s 3 now.

Then, I started to think about the cost and suggested making our own breakfast bar using mostly what we had on hand and adding a few things if needed. After I said that hubby started breaking down the cost of things if we fixed it at home and decided it wasn’t worth it. I was pretty proud of him. He was pretty proud of himself when he came back and had spent less than what we would have at a breakfast bar on extras we didn’t have, plus food easy lunches for him and the kids.

I fixed enough food for us to eat on it for more than one meal so that was a nice added bonus.

Stretching Meals

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Something I’ve been trying to do more of lately is stretching leftover meals into whole new meals. Typically, leftover are just eaten as are the next day by whoever gets to them first. The past couple of days I’ve been doing things a little different.

Pictured above is some mac & cheese with shredded broccoli. I decided to make it because the toddler loves broccoli, one of the only veggies he’ll eat, and we only had one stalk left. Since it wasn’t enough for a side and I had some left leftover noodles from making chili mac, I though adding the two together with some cheese would work.

The toddler loved it.

I didn’t get a picture of the chili mac like I had planned, but it was pretty good. I had made chili one night for dinner and there really wasn’t enough left for the next day. Instead of one or two people finishing it off, I added half a pound of noodles and it worked for a full dinner the next night.

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The night before I made homemade sweet chili sauce to go on top of some beef, peppers, and rice. It turned out pretty good, but I wasn’t crazy over the rice and the sauce. So, this morning we had leftover sweet, cinnamon rice and for dinner I turned the leftover meat and pepper mix and sauce into a soup. Since the hubby isn’t a fan of soup by itself for a meal I added in some grilled cheese. It wasn’t even enough for two people and I turned it into another meal for 4 with leftovers.

Freezer Meal Breakfast

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At my prenatal appointment the other day they told me that my iron was low after some bloodwork. I haven’t been to pick up my iron supplement yet due to snowy weather, so I have been trying to have some iron packed meals. Pictured above was my partial freezer meal iron packed breakfast.

I fixed the soup beans in December. I’ve loved having single portion size bags frozen that I can heat up when I want. I still have one bag left. The eggs are just chopped kale and tomatoes scrambled into the eggs. I used to eat my eggs like this all the time and stopped for some reason. I’m looking forward to fixing them often again.

Compliments for Coupons

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This is what I was sent through the mail this week for reaching out to different companies. I haven’t taken the time to sit down and email any new companies and I need to get on that. I love getting these. Included in this batch is two free product coupons for Frito Lays brand!

Cheap or Frugal

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Sometime this past week I realized that I do something that saves money and I’m not sure if it’s frugal, or cheap. I used to collect those tiny little sample bottles/packs with good intentions. I once had probably two hundred. After way too much time of letting them collect dust, I started opening the bottles and letting them sit and drain into the full size bottles. If you’re weird about your body wash or shampoo, this might not work for you, but I don’t really care. Soap is soap to me.

I just thought I’d share in case you’re like I was and have a million of these little bottles hanging around collecting dust and taking up space in your home as well.

Wrap Up

I’m not sure if I’ll manage to post again soon, but I plan to try to make Friday my blogging day at the very least. I miss blogging, but this baby is going to be here in six weeks or less and I’m trying my best to get as much of this 4 month class done before he or she gets here. I really want to get it completed and do well so that I have a shot at the second scholarship for the 9 month nanodegree. If I can complete this, it could become a huge money saver and maker for our family.

I’m not really sure what I’ll be able to share next week as my goals have sort of went out the window. With my physical condition getting worse, I’m just doing what I can and trying to keep myself from doing too much. I do know that closer to February I will be starting my seeds that will eventually be planted outdoors and I absolutely cannot wait. I have plans to do a combo of back deck gardening, raised beg gardening, and some regular old ground gardening.

I won’t be going overboard with however much I plant, and how it’s planted will be done so in a way that I will be able to manage it in whatever physical shape I’m in after a hysterectomy, if that’s’ what I end up with. It might be ambitious to try to plant vegetables when a new baby is coming through a complicated surgical delivery, but I’m going to give it my best shot. Hopefully recovery is a breeze and I can go on with life as usual.

January 12, 2018

Day 12 of 2018 and it’s about time I updated!

After some high’s, low’s, and getting off track this past week, I’m ready to get back at it.

After my last post, I hit a bit of a low worrying about my appointment with my perinatology specialist. Sometimes, or most of the time, it takes constant awareness to keep from allowing myself to get sucked into that black hole of worry. Then, after my appointment on Tuesday, I discovered that my accreta has progressed to increta. After plummeting a little further into that black hole, I started working my way back up again. It took me some time, but I’m back as close to the top as I feel like I can get, and I’m ready to get this year going again.

Google Scholarship

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So, how about we start with something that’s pretty awesome and a major budget cutter! Several months back I applied for a scholarship with Google and a few days ago I was shocked to find an email in my inbox letting me know I was chosen! I have zero technical background, but a whole lot of interest. I am so, so, so excited to have the opportunity to work on this. Hopefully I can do well enough to get my hands on the next level of scholarship.

Gardening Plans

I have been hit by the gardening bug HARD. I absolutely cannot wait until spring so that I can get some planting going on. The Dollar Tree had all of their seeds priced at $.25 and I probably went a little overboard, but I grabbed many different types of fruits/vegetables to work with when the weather allows.

I’ve never gardened and I don’t want to go too big too fast. I don’t know if I’ll plant every seed, but I’m going to try to get us a good variety going in a small area that the hubby plans to fix up for me. Since I’ll most definitely be having a C-section and most likely a hysterectomy around spring time, he’s going to be building me a raised bed so that I don’t have to do any bending down. I’ll probably also do a little container gardening on our back deck for easier access to things I might use daily.

Ugh, is it spring yet?

Curbing Take Out Cravings

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I am absolutely addicted to Asian soups. I could eat them all day every single day for every meal. I started craving hibachi soup the other night and instead of running out to get a tiny bowl for $2, I decided to attempt to make my own. I didn’t really look up a recipe, but what I came up with hit the spot pretty well. In the process, I discovered that I absolutely love radishes. I had no idea.

What I came up with was pretty simple. I thinly sliced radishes, mushrooms, spring onion (these are the ones I put in water), and some kale and tossed it into a pot with some noodles and chicken broth. I seasoned it with salt and added some Sriracha. I ended up finishing off that pot and making another, which is also already gone. Considered making another, but tonight we had chili. The hubby was grateful.

Compliments for Coupons

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Through the week I’ve managed to accumulate a pretty good amount of coupons from the companies that I’ve been emailing. King’s Hawaiian was even awesome enough to send me two yummy looking recipe cards.

Overdue Update Wrap Up

As far as sticking to the budget goes this week, it wasn’t too good. Partly due to our daughter turning 14, but also due to my bit of a depression funk I fell into. I’m not letting it get me down, however. Tomorrow is always a new day and I’m looking forward to it. Besides, despite blowing our budget on food, we still managed to get our Amazon credit card debt down below $50 and I paid off a small medical bill.

I still plan to try to update on here as often as I can, but with the scholarship deadline and my upcoming increta baby deliver, I’m not sure it’ll be daily. Especially since I’m thinking about starting a separate blog that will be sort of an outlet for me as I’m going through this pregnancy. I’ll have a lot of projects going on all at once so I’ll have to find a bit of balance, all while budget cutting our way out of debt and in to savings.