Friday, December 31, 2010

The More You Know....

The More You KOHLS!


I stumbled into Kohls today...I had no intention of going there when I woke up this morning but since I was at Fred Meyers next door already, I thought what the heck...It can't be that bad.  Plus I had a 20% off discount that was in my email from a few days ago...I know!  Just like magic, it appeared. 

Actually if you sign up on their email list, you will get these promotions, ads, etc just like me AND often times you will get the ads before they are published in the inserts for the newspapers...Pretty cool, huh?  If you haven't signed up, its not too late (not too late to even get in on this deal).

Upon meandering through Kohls, I noticed there are a lot of good deals going on right now (and you know I am all about getting good deals).  They are having a HUGE 3 day sale...I don't normally shop at Kohls but today I am glad I did. 

I walked out of there spending only $40.43 and I got a ton of stuff!!!

2 full outfits for H (4 items)
1 full outfit for K (2 items)
6 new large bath towels (6 items)
A snuggie (for an upcoming birthday gift) (1 item)
A reed diffuser (for an upcoming birthday gift) (1 item)

 14 total items so therefore the average cost per item is $2.88!!!







They also have TONS of toys on sale, in case you have a childs birthdays coming up in the winter/spring months.  They are anywhere from 40%-70% off!   Can't beat that!


What a way to close out an already good year! 



Note:  This is not a paid endorsement

5 on Friday

This recipe comes from my new Crockpot Cookbook that was one of my Christmas presents from my husband.  I have made this before and have always enjoyed it.  I will be making this for dinner today. 

Crockpot dinners are so easy.  I just love them!

Scalloped Potatoes and Ham (or Bacon in our case)



  • 3 pounds potatoes (6-10 med size potatoes), peeled and thinly slice

  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese *

  • 1/2 cup diced onion

  • 1 cup chopped cooked ham or bacon   (I used bacon because for some reason the store I shopped at this week didn't have any of the ham chunks or single ham steaks; they only had the huge hams leftover from Christmas so this would be a good left over idea for your Christmas ham)

  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup (mixed with 1/2 can of water)

  • Salt and Pepper to taste**





  • *You can substitute shredded cheddar cheese with cheese soup if you do not have regular cheese on hand.  You can also use cheese soup in place of the mushroom soup for extra cheesiness. 

    **Freebies



    Directions

    1. Place sliced potatoes in slow cooker.
    2. Mix shredded cheese, onion, and ham or bacon (sliced) with potatoes in slow cooker.
    3. Using a medium bowl, mix together condensed soup and water. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour evenly over the potato mixture in crockpot.
    4. Cover, and cook on High for 3 1/2-4 hrs (or until potatoes are tender when poked with fork).
    Pair with a side salad for a tasty quick and easy dinner!


    Sidenote: If you use the cheese soup instead of regular cheese or mushroom soup, use two cans.

    ***You can also make this in a 13x9 casserole dish, if you do not have a crockpot.  Bake in the oven on 350 for 1 hr***




    
    Thank you Big Momma Kaboose for the photo
    

    Thursday, December 30, 2010

    Wrap It Up


    I was going to call this post “A Year In Review” or “The Best of 2010” but everyone uses those so I wanted to be a bit more original…Did it work?

    So to sum up the year in our household is pretty easy….One word….Four letters…





    BABY!


    The baby was pretty consuming for most of the year.  We were either pregnant (for almost 5 months of 2010), having the baby or just had the baby (May 5th).  And now everything since then is a blur…has been delightful!

    This is our 4th and final child.  (That sounds funny 4th and final)…But "4" is our magic number.  We have enough room in our heart, house, cars, finances, etc for the 4th but no more…I am sure we have enough room in our heart for more but our heart is not what pays the bills.  This womb is closed for business! 

    In all seriousness, in 2010 and many other previous years, we have been truly blessed.  We have 4 healthy children, our own health, our faith, our great family and friends.

    Our up and coming adult graduated from high school and is now in college.  And she bought her first car this summer with her own money that she had been saving for over a year.  She was truly dedicated to this goal and frugal as all get out over this past year.  As much as we have butted heads over the years, she makes me proud to have her as a daughter.  And the frugality, I LOVE IT!  At least she learned something that I know will be put to use in the years to come.

     
    And now no more late night pick ups from her job or early morning drops offs at school by mom.  Whooo-Hoo…If that isn’t exciting!  Now I have sleepless nights wondering where she is because since she bought her car and is now mobile…We don’t see much of her.

    Our tween he is in middle school now…Yes, the awkward years are coming.  He is still playing football.  And was even the Offensive MVP for his team this summer/fall.  He is now getting ready to start the winter basketball season. Always in one sport or another.   

    He is doing awesome in his studies too.  He is in advanced Math and is even getting an A!  Not sure where he got the math gene but he has it.  We always laugh about that because nobody in our family is really good at math but he sure is! 

    He has also been pretty social of late.  Can’t keep track of all his buddies but at any given time, either we have a few boys at our house playing the PS, hamming it up dancing and singing, playing basketball or football in the back yard.  Or he is at their house, hanging out. 


    Our energetic tornado of a 3 yr old preschooler, is getting ready to do just that…Start preschool.  We are gearing him up to hopefully start in early 2011 (still narrowing down which one to send him to).  We are still working on a few things to get him ready.  He is excited though.  He talks about it all the time.  Puts on his back pack and tells us bye.  We ask where he is going, he always tells us preschool. 

    He has also become very strong willed and is starting to hold his own with his tween brother.  And is like a shadow to him.  It is so cute (to us) not to T.

    And our 4th and final child Miss K, as we refer to her as, she is just beautiful and warms my heart every time she smiles at me!  She is a bundle of joy.  A very happy baby.  She is almost 8 months now.  She has been crawling since she was around 6 months and has two bottom teeth that popped out right around the same time.  She gets around pretty well these days and is starting to try and get into anything within reach. 

    She is eating very well.  We were going to try and feed her homemade baby food but time slipped away so for the most part feed her organic baby food or even some of what we are eating just mashed up pretty well.  Last night I mashed up raviolis.  She digged those. 

    With regard to my husband and I, we are living life to the fullest, as much as we can with a few small children in tow anyways.  We are volunteering as much as we can through our church and other organizations. 

    We get out and about town as often as we can. 

    We have been to several great concerts this past year.  We went to the Rock & Worship Roadshow, The FishFest, 10th Ave North, Addison Road, several others that I am having a hard time remembering but I know there were more concerts.

    We also spent some fun times with friends and family just being together.  My mom came out from Maryland for a few weeks this summer after Miss K was born.  It was nice to be able to visit with her.  We took her to The Oregon Zoo, Multnomah Falls and tootled around town while she was here.  She was able to be here for her oldest grandchilds graduation, graduation party and even our 3 year olds birthday so that was very nice.

    We have watched many a football games this season because if you read my blog long enough you know my husband is a die hard football fanatic and more so with the Ducks going to the BCS (Go Ducks!).  BCS Game Monday, January 10th, in case you didn't know. 

    I started writing this blog which has been very therapeutic in a lot of ways and I have been able to make some new connections which are still blossoming.  I am excited how far this blog has come in such a short time.

    And we have a new “adventure” that I will share with everyone in the coming weeks. 

    I am really looking forward to 2011 and all it has to offer.

    We hope your family has been blessed as much as ours. Until next year....

    Have a safe and Happy New Year!






    Wednesday, December 29, 2010

    Da-Dum...Da-Dum...Da-Dum

    Dun-Dun-Dun-Dun-Dun-Dun................



    Everyone out of the water immediately, there has been a SHARK invasion....In my KITCHEN!



    I got a Shark for Christmas, not a real Shark...Seriously where would I even put a real Shark had I wanted one?  Which I don't....


    But rather The Shark Steam Pocket Mop...and it
    is W-O-N-D-E-R-F-U-L! 

    It looks like I have a brand new kitchen floor....you could probably eat off of it, if you wanted to but I still wouldn't recommend it.  I know, God Made Dirt And Dirt Don't Hurt...at least that is what we tell our children until they eat a bucket full of course...Ha! Ha!


    Anyways, back to my Shark...You put it together which looked pretty simple to do (although I didn't do that part but probably could have if I really wanted to), put one of the three pads on it, pour a little water into the tank, plug it in and off you go...


    It was that simple!

    I literally mopped my whole kitchen floor (actually two kitchen floors since we have two kitchen areas) in a matter of minutes.  As you push the mop back and forth, putting a little muscle into it, it "picks up steam" and lets the steam out to mop your floor.  The little rectangular micro fiber pad collects all the soil. 

    AND it is steam only, no harsh chemicals to smell, spill all over your hands, the floor, etc. 

    AND it drys in a matter of seconds so no wet foot prints tracked from kitchen linoleum to carpet. (I think I should be on The Shark Infomercial).

    It really does what is says and I can attest to that first hand.

    I am so excited!  (I know that is really sad that I am excited about mopping my floor; what has my life come to?  lol) 

    It's all good....less time mopping, I am all over that especially since this is the first time I have mopped both floors in their entirety for several months....(Yeah, I am a definite slacker in the mopping floors department). 

    I am not sure how much they retail for and not going to ask...I am just utterly thrilled  I received it from my brother-in-law rather than my husband because you know if the husband had bought it for me for Christmas, that would not have been a good thing....(funny how that works, huh?) but since BIL bought it...


    It is a great gift, an awesome gift even!  Thank you Tony!





    Wacky Wednesday

    Since there has been a lot of traveling going on (or not if you have been stranded on the east coast due to snowstorms) due to the holidays, I thought it was only appropriate to share this video...











    Sure would make this part of the flight much more entertaining, now wouldn't it?

    S-A-F-E-T-Y Dance by Men Without Hats just so happens to be one of my favorite 80's song.  (I think I might have aged myself by confessing to that).

    You can't help but want to get up out of your seat (airline seat or other) and get your groove on....We can dance if we want to...

    Now get up on out of here and shake your thang...(ok, enough already)

    Tuesday, December 28, 2010

    My Own Little World...


    Have you heard that song by Matthew West?  It happens to be one of my favorite songs. I have heard it a thousand times but this morning I heard it and it was different…not the song itself but the impact it had on me. 

    It hit me like a ton of bricks.  An overwhelming sadness came down on me and I started to cry.  Not just a few tears...uncontrollable sobbing actually. And I don't cry like that very often.  I have no reason to, I am truly blessed and I know that.

    The lyrics really got me thinking that so often, we, including me, are wrapped in our own little world.  Maybe that world includes your close family and a few friends but your still in your own little world.  Doing your *own* thing, taking care of your *own*.

    Do you ever step out of it..your own little world? Reach out to others, befriend those with no friends, feed those with no food, warm those with no warmth, get out of your own little world and comfort zone to help someone else out who is less blessed than you?

    Close your eyes for a sec...Think of all the things you are blessed with....



    Now open them...


    Read the lyrics...

    In my own little world it hardly ever rains
    I’ve never gone hungry, always felt safe
    I got some money in my pocket, shoes on my feet
    In my own little world
    Population me

    I try to stay awake through Sunday morning church
    I throw a twenty in the plate but I never give ’til it hurts
    and I turn off the news when I don’t like what I see
    it’s easy to do when it’s population me

    What if there’s a bigger picture
    what if I’m missing out
    What if there’s a greater purpose
    I could be living right now
    outside my own little world

    Stopped at the red light, looked out my window
    I saw a cardboard sign said “Help this homeless widow”
    Just above that sign was the face of a human
    I thought to myself, “God, what have I been doing?”
    So I rolled down the window and I looked her in the eye
    Oh how many times have I just passed her by
    I gave her some money then I drove on through
    in my own little world there’s
    Population two

    What if there’s a bigger picture
    what if I’m missing out
    What if there’s a greater purpose
    I could be living right now
    outside my own little world
    my own little world


    Father break my heart for what breaks
    Yours give me open hands and open doors
    put Your light in my eyes and let me see
    that my own little world is not about me

    What if there’s a bigger picture
    what if I’m missing out
    What if there’s a greater purpose
    I could be living right now

    I don't wanna miss what matters
    I wanna be reachin' out
    Show me the greater purpose
    So I can start livin' right now
    outside my own little world

    Listen....


    To the words, put them into action, LIVE them...I challenge you!





    Monday, December 27, 2010

    Improv

    Mr Beanpole



    If you have read my blog long enough, you know I improvise on things often...I am actually getting pretty good at it, if I say so myself...

    On Christmas Eve we had to improvise on a belt for our skinny man....I bought an outfit last minute (of course), thought for sure it would fit him just fine...and fit him fine it did...in the length but not in the waist.

    He is like a bean pole...tall and skinny.  If I get pants that fit him in the waist, then it looks like he is waiting for a flood...so I always have to get a size bigger....I know this so I should have found a belt too...but I didn't so we used ribbon instead....which we of course had an abundance of since I was a wrapping fool that day.




    Seeeeeeee......You would have never known, unless I told you, which I did, so now you do...

    Ahhh....



    Not to be The Scrooge (once again) but I am glad the holidays are almost over…(2 down, 1 to go)

    They are a whole lot of work…

    We work ourselves into a tizzy over the last several weeks...

    Cleaning for company.

    Decorating trees. Houses. Hanging lights.

    Buying gifts for kids. Moms. Dads. Aunts. Uncles. Cousins. 

    Wrapping gifts for kids. Moms. Dads. Aunts. Uncles. Cousins (did I ever tell you how much I love to wrap presents?) 

    Baking cookies. Pies.

    Cooking turkeys. Hams. Mashed Potatoes and all the other fixins…for this ONE day…


    And then, then we have to take it all down.

    The tree. Decorations. Lights. 

    Clean it all up. The wrapping paper. Tissues. Boxes. Bags. Dishes in the kitchen. Pots and pans.

    It never ends....


    So I pose the question...Was it worth it?

    My answer might surprise you....




    To see the joy on my childrens faces Christmas morning...

    YES!

    To be able to enjoy my family as we sit around eating a delicious meal, sharing and making memories...

    YES!

    Even though I am utterly exhausted by the end of the day and our living room looks like a toy store hit by a tornado...

    YES!


    Until next year Santa....





    Thursday, December 23, 2010

    5 of Friday (Thursday)

    Since tomorrow is Christmas Eve, I wanted to post this early because I will be spending the day with family hopefully like many of you.

    I made this meal one night last week. 

    Even though you would normally probably think of this dish as a side item, I used it as the main entree and paired it with some applesauce since the entree already had protein (chicken), carbs (rice) and vegetables (peas & carrots).


    Chicken Fried Rice

    Ingredients

    • 1 1/2 pounds cooked/diced chicken breast (chicken tenders or chicken for stir fry work well so you have less prep time in cutting up chicken into smaller pieces)
    • 1/3 cup soy sauce (or more depending on your taste buds)
    • 1 bag of frozen peas/carrots medley
    • 6 cups cooked white rice (we typically use brown rice)
    • 2 eggs
    • Non Stick Cooking Spray* (NSCS)

    *Freebie

    Directions

    1.  Spray large skillet with non stick cooking spray.

    2. Cook diced chicken in large skillet on medium heat until brown (10-15 mins)

    3.  Cook brown or white rice as directed on bag/box.

    4. Cook frozen peas/carrots on stove top until al dente.  Drain excess water. Set aside.

    5. Cook eggs in separate skillet, scramble*.  Do not add milk.

    6. Mix all items into the large skillet where chicken was cooked. 

    7. Add soy sauce, stir. Let simmer for about 5 mins and serve.


    *Don't forget to coat skillet with NSCS

    Serves 6-8


    This is also a great recipe for left over pork, turkey and even ham!  I know it doesn't sound as appealing Turkey Fried Rice, Ham Fried Rice...but it's all good!


    Wednesday, December 22, 2010

    Wacky Wednesday

    It is time for another edition of Wacky Wednesday!  Are you ready for this one?  This is the Christmas Family Portrait Edition.


    Thank you Akward Family Photos for these and to all the people who submitted them even though they knew they would be humiliated for life.

    Remember your not laughing at them but rather with them...(they submitted them)



    Not sure how a clown got into a Christmas picture, but whatever...

    May the force be with you and yours...

    Yeah, this little guy was having nothing to do with this pic



    

    Where's Waldo?






    
    These were just a few of MY favorites.  Tons more to view.  Check them out.


    Did you and your family take a holiday portrait this year?





    Tuesday, December 21, 2010

    Improv

    Guess why I am in the tub fully clothed?





    video





    Because brother had a friend over and I didn't want to leave my momma's side..and momma she had to go to the bathroom.

    She couldn't very well leave the door wide open like she normally does with company over now could she? 

    It wasn't that bad...I survived...You can't hear me very well but I was even giggling a little bit...



    Whatever works, right?

    Puppy Chow

    Heaven in a bite…(or handful or several handfuls in my case)


    We had our Christmas Lunch today at work and one of my co-workers brought each of us a bucket of “Puppy Chow”.  Have you ever had that? 

    Don’t let the name fool you like it almost did another one of our
    co-workers….He started eating it and when the co-worker who gave it to us said, “How do you like the puppy chow?” he stopped mid bite… until he realized that was the name of this wonderful confection.

    
    Not this Puppy Chow...
    



    If made right, “Puppy Chow” melts in your mouth (not in your hand). 

    Here is a recipe if you want to try it:

    • 1 (17.5 ounce) package crispy corn cereal squares
    • 1/2 cup butter
    • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
    • 1 cup peanut butter
    • 1/3 cup confectioners' sugar for decoration

    Directions

    1.        Put cereal in a large mixing bowl. Melt the butter or margarine, chocolate chips and peanut butter together. Pour over cereal and stir gently. Let cool.
    2.        Once cool place coated cereal in a large bag add some confectioners' sugar and shake until coated.


    This one!



    Funny thing though (after eating half of the bucket myself) I actually removed it from my office and put it on the floor in our copy room so it was out of sight, out of mind…so I wouldn’t eat anymore.  The coworker that brought it in noticed it and says, “I know it's called “Puppy Chow” but come on.” 

    It has since found its way back into my office and is calling my name…




    Gotta go…I am being summoned.

    Coupons.com

    If you visit my blog often, you might have noticed a new button to the left of my posts....COUPONS.COM

    All your coupons right here at your frugal finger tips for your printing pleasure...


    Here are some new coupons that have just been released:

    FREE Bottle of Excedrin Extra Strength
    FREE Bottle of Excedrin Migraine
    $3.50/1 Excedrin PM
    $3/1 Bottle Of ZarBee’s Cough Syrup
    $5/1 Enfamil Premuim NewBorn or Infant Formula
    $4/1 Benefiber Product
    $3/1 Afrin 12 Hour Nasal Spray
    $5/1 Bag Of Purina ProPlan Dog Or Cat Food
    $2/1 Bag Of Purina Dog Chow-Any Size
    $3/1 Afrin 12 Hour Nasal Spray
    $3/1 Glade PlugIns Scented Oil Lasting Impressions holder
    $4/1 Glade Automatic Spray Starter Kit
    $3/1 Scrubbing Bubbles Fresh Brush 2-in-1 Starter Kit
    $2/1 Listerine Zero
    $2/1 Aleve 80ct
    $1.50/2 Nestle Jingles
    $2/2 Kellogg’s Krispies Cereals
    Buy One Get One FREE LifeSavers Gummies
    Buy One Get One FREE Wonka’s Exceptionals
    Buy Two Get One FREE Dove Chocolate Bars
    Buy Two Get One FREE Whiskas Trays
    $2.50/3 LifeSavers or Starburst Storybooks

    (Thank you Frugal Living NW for putting this list together)


    Print them off before they are gone!



    Monday, December 20, 2010

    Beep.Beep.Out of The Way.

    I said to the driver who was going 20mph in front of me on the way home last night.

    Seriously, I couldn't help but chuckle after saying it out loud in the empty car  (and like the woman could hear me).  I didn't actually honk my "real" horn or anything.

    You see my son and now my daughter have this little driving toy that has a steering wheel, a whole bunch of buttons, little gear shift, flashing lights, etc and it says all these cute little sayings such as:

    Beep.Beep. Out of the Way.  I'm Driving.
    Filler Up.  I'm out of gas. (I think I will start saying this when I am tired)
    Slow down, little fella.

    And I often times find myself saying these things out loud, to others, not even realizing it...lol...I guess this is what happens when you get old have small children; certain things or habits for that matter get stuck in your head,engraved almost.

    Do you ever try and cut up your husbands meat at dinner? 

    What about referring to your spouse as "mommy" or "daddy" when talking to others?

    Before going somewhere asking your spouse if they have to go potty?

    Yeah, me neither...all the time....






    Sunday, December 19, 2010

    Read My Lips...

    Not Going To Do It, Not Going To Do It......Who does that sound like?

    (No, this is not going to be a political rant...that is one topic I will not touch on my blog for the most part anyways)

    Read my lips....I am not making a New Years resolution that I will not keep.  Year after year, we all make these grand plans for our New Years resolution....and....by January 2nd, they are thrown out the window....

    C'mon I know its not just me...

    Does this sound like you?

    • I will be more organized...(not sure what this even means)
    • I will eat better...more fruits and vegetables less carbs
    • I will not eat out as often...
    • I will lose (insert weight you want to lose hear) lbs by my birthday...
    • I will drink more water...
    • I will drink less coffee...
    • I will save more money...
    • I will go to the gym 3x a week...
    • I will remember every family members birthday this year and if nothing else, at least send them a card (This really was one of mine one year and I did do pretty good on this one)
    • I will watch less sports (this needs to be my husbands)...
    • I will clean out my car... more often...

    The list could go on and on and on...


    But I figured since I have failed so miserably at many of the above that if I didn't set the expectations of making one this year, then I won't be disappointed when it doesn't work out, right?


    So my New Years resolution this year is to NOT have one...are you with me here?




    Friday, December 17, 2010

    Fruitcake

    Glorious fruitcake....NOT!  Have you ever seen it?  Does not look tantalizing to me.  A hodgepodge of who knows what.....neon fruit, bread, nuts, spices....


    This past week a local radio station that I listen to (104.1 The Fish) has asked callers to call in and tell them what they use fruitcake for. 

    Yes, they were making fun of fruitcake because LORD knows you won't eat it. It seems not too many people are fond of this American Icon.






    Here are some of the caller suggestions:

    • Door stop
    • Book ends
    • Colorful Paperweight
    • Put in the back of your pick up to add weight when on ice
    • Home defense

    Here are some more suggestions:

    • Use as blocks for the tires on airplanes when they land at the terminal
    • Lawn fertilizer
    • Play football with it
    • If you have 3, you can juggle with them
    • Use as a base for flower arrangements
    • Practice your shot put
    • Regift to an enemy




    5 on Friday

    This quick and easy recipe is ALWAYS a hit in our house. 

     

    I hope your family will enjoy it too!

     

    Taco Bake

     

    Ingredients

    • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
    • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chile peppers, drained
    • 1 (1.25 ounce) package taco seasoning mix
    • 8-16 ounces shredded cheese (Cheddar, Monterey, whatever you like best)
    • 1 bag of corn tortilla chips or 8-10 tortillas

     

    Directions

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
    2. In a medium skillet over medium heat, brown the ground beef and drain fat. Add the diced tomatoes with green chile peppers and taco seasoning mix . Let simmer for 5 to 10 minutes.
    3. In the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish, place a layer of tortilla chips OR tortillas.
    4. Cover with a layer of the meat mixture then a layer of cheese. Repeat until the top layer is cheese.
    5. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted.
    If you do not use tortilla chips nor do you want to lay the tortillas on the bottom, you can just layer accordingly without those items (which is what I usually do). 


    Then you can roll the mixture into a tortilla like a burrito adding a dollop of sour cream and salsa.  OR you can put on top of the tortillas chips for "nachos".


    Pair with some spanish rice (brown rice mixed with a little bit of salsa) OR southwestern corn (corn mixed with a little bit of salsa).






    Thursday, December 16, 2010

    Will The REAL Housewives Please Stand Up

    Ok, so I got sucked into watching one of the many Real Housewives shows last night...I don't normally watch them but for some reason, I stopped on the channel and proceeded to watch a little bit of it...It was the Atlanta Housewives.

    I said a *little* bit because that is all I could stomach. 

    For one, come on, these are not Housewives!  These are socialites trying to play housewives for some odd reason.  Not that being a housewife is a bad thing because it isn't by any means and I am not sure that is the politically correct term these days.  Stay at home mom?  Domestic Goddess?  Domestic Engineer?  Home Manager? 

    I mean half of these woman don't even have children and if they do they are older OR they have a nanny to take care of said children.  Furthermore, they are not taking care of the house as housewife would imply, they are too busy out to lunch, getting their fake hair or fake nails done, working out, taking acting lessons, shopping, racing cars, etc...Now tell me how many REAL housewives do this?  And cooking forget that...heck, half of them don't even seem to eat.

    And the blond with the fake hair, who can't carry a tune to save her life YET she is recording an album....Seriously? 

    Needless to say I won't be watching this show again anytime soon...and to think...they have several installments of it? Orange County, New York...do people actually watch these on a regular basis?  What has the world come to?

    Ok, I am done ranting for now...





    Are You One Of Us?

    Recent surveys have shown that only 10% of all shoppers are done with their Christmas shopping.

    There are only 9 days left til the big day!!  9!  Did you hear me? What are you waiting for?

    Like I should talk….I started out with a bang on Black Friday but have slowly petered out.  I made my list yesterday of everything I "have" versus everything I still "need". 

    And….


    Well….


    The “have” versus “need” side of the list is much shorter….

    So, guess what I will be doing this weekend?  You'll never guess in a million years....


    Wait for it....



    A little bit longer....



    SHOPPING! 

    I would rather poke my eyes out with a needle than shop this close to Christmas BUT I only have myself to blame for procrastinating!  (hangs head low and lets out a deep sigh). 

    I don't really shop much because I just don't enjoy it like most woman...and I really don't like shopping around this time of year with everyone else.  Nothing personal people...but just too many people, all in the same place, all at the same time, all for the same purpose.  I get a little anxious.

    But, I got to to do what I got to do...so I am going to suck it up and get out there with the other 90% of people and finish up.  I *think* I might even go to the mall because we still need to visit Santa Claus!  Ahhh, the mall! The worse place but that is where Santa *hangs* these days so I guess I have no choice.

    Hayden said he was going to tell Santa that he wants a puppy dog.  I tried to reason with him and tell him that Santa can't bring live animals in his sleigh because too long of a ride AND it is too cold while he is sleighing through the sky.  My reasoning, didn't work.  He is still adamant that he wants a puppy dog.  We need a puppy dog like we need another hole in the head.  Just sayin!  (Reasoning with a 3 yr old, that's funny)



    Wish me luck!   If I am not back in an hour, please send in a search party.







    
    Are You One of Us? 
    





    Wednesday, December 15, 2010

    Wacky Wednesday

    To keep with the "theme" from last week where I listed some wacky baby names, now lets talk about the "parents" (not necessarily "the" parents of the baby's listed in last weeks WW post).


    Celebrity's Stage Names vs Real Names:


    John Denver = Henry John Deutschendorf Jr. *Can you imagine his real name on a record label?  They would run out of room*

    Bo Derek = Mary Cathleen Collins  *Her real name sounds a bit like a nuns name and just can't see that name in the lights especially knowing some of the movies she has been in*

    Kirk Douglas = Issur Danielovitch *Huh?*

    Elvis Costello = Declan Patrick McManus *I like Declan but Elvis Costello fits him much better*

    Whoopie Goldberg = Caryn Johnson *Not so sure I would have chosen Whoopie but I guess it does fit her*

    Hulk Hogan = Terry Gene Bollea *Definetly does not look like a Terry*

    Engelbert Humperdinck = Arnold George Dorsey  *I think maybe I would have liked Arnold Dorsey better*

    Elton John = Reginald Dwight

    Jenny Jones = Janina Stranski *Remember her?  Where is she now?*

    Liberace = Wladziu Lee Valentino *Both equally puzzleing to me*

    Courtney Love = Michelle Harrison

    Meat Loaf = Marvin Lee Aday *Like his music, but his name, not so much*

    Rip Torn = Elmore Rual Torn Jr. *I'm a bit "torn" on this one. No pun intended*

    Chaka Khan = Carole Yvette Marie Stevens *I'm sorry but when you say her stage name, sounds like you are sneezing*

    Dusty Springfield = Mary Isobel Catherine O'Brien

    Fatboy Slim = Quentin Cook (aka Norman Cook)

    Pat Benatar = Patricia Andrejewski *I love her!  But Andrejewski?*





    I guess you can't pick your names but at least you can change them?!?!

    Clark Griswold, Who?

    Delaware Family's Christmas Decorations Make the Griswolds Look Like Amateurs

    christmas lights Clark Griswold's power-sapping, aircraft-guiding Christmas light extravaganza once represented the pinnacle of overzealous Holiday displays. The last few seasons have witnessed an evolution of progressively elaborate home illuminations, though, including one brilliant and blinding arrangement from Delaware's Faucher family.

    The Fauchers have apparently adhered to a Griswold-style lighting plan for 25 years, and -- this year -- House Logic broke down the monthly costs required. At four hours per night, for 1 million individual bulbs, the Fauchers allegedly pay $82,320 every month, which breaks down to $686 per hour. According to Gizmodo, though, if the Fauchers were to make the switch to LED lights, the monthly bill would plummet to a relatively reasonable $10,680, or a paltry $89 per hour. Plus, with LED displays, the family could synchronize their illuminated decorations with the classic carols of the season -- like these unwavering traditionalists
    If you read my Bah, Humbug post, you know I am not a big fan of Christmas lights on our OWN home and this is the reason why.....When is enough, enough?
    They are beautiful and festive but when I see the dollar figures above I just cringe.  That money could be going to a local charity to help people that DON'T have electricity because they can't pay their bill.  Just my two cents! 
    Ok, now you can call me Scrooge if you like. 

    Tuesday, December 14, 2010

    Guilty Pleasures

    I have a few AND I have new one. 

    Have you seen The Sing-Off?  Apparently, this is the second season?  Where was it last year?  I know if I had heard about it I would have watched it. 

    Maybe I was too busy watching GLEE!  (one of my other guilty pleasures).

    I am not sure what it is that reels me in to these types of shows.  I am not a big singer.  Sure, I was in choir for a few years while growing up…and I think I sound good when I sing in the shower (not really) but there is just something about these shows that hook me (and a million others since I think both of these shows are doing really well in the ratings).

    This season on The Sing-Off, of course we have some locals on there, On The Rocks (group from University of Oregon; Go Ducks!) who I like but not sure if they will win it all or not.  There is some tough competition (Committed). 

    I also like the rendition of B52’s Love Shack from The Backbeats last night.  Wow, that took me back! 

    Tinnnnnnnnnnnnn Roof, Rusted!













    Who is your favorite group?  Who do you think will win?

    Monday, December 13, 2010

    Loveseat or Laundry Basket?

    Loveseat or high priced comfortable laundry basket?





    Does your loveseat ever look like this? 





    Yeah, mine neither...Maybe the socks that I am missing are in between the cushions?


    Hey, at the least the clothes are clean...and it could be worse....They could be on the floor.

    Confessions Of A Non-Superwoman #1

    1.  We bought our Christmas tree this year from a tree lot....Gasp!.  (See previous post)

    2.  Thank god for speckled granite color kitchen floors because I can not remember the last time I mopped my floor in full.  BUT, you can't tell!  That is the glory of it.  If I hadn't shared this confession, you probably would have never known.

    3.  If you read my blog regularly you know I don't always cook from scratch.  I often times "cheat".  Although, I don't tend to buy a lot of "processed" items, there are definitely occasions when I use a canned or frozen item for time saving especially during off seasons when fresh items are not always readily available (nor priced within our weekly food budget).

    4.  We just bought a whole bunch of socks at the Fred Meyer sock sale on Black Friday and we are already missing several pairs.  Where do they go??? I swear there is a dryer monster that eats half of them.

    5.  I wore my pajamas out of the house yesterday and barely brushed my hair.  They were Oregon Ducks pjs and I was only going to Walgreens...Do I at least get some credit for the Duck jammies?



    NOT! NOT! NOT! But Still Super Tired!

    O' Christmas Tree, O'Christmas Tree

    Our $10.00 tree.  Yes, it only cost us $10.00! 

    In years past, we typically have gone to a U-cut farm.   Where we end up spending half of the day, walking around a local Christmas tree farm, in the cold, wet mud in search of that "perfect" tree .  All the while children grumbling (and probably adults too) about this, that and the other (I'm cold, I'm hungry, my feet are wet)...then when we finally find *THE* tree one of us has to lay down in the muck to cut it (not going to be me!) AND then we have to haul it back to the car and tie it down on our roof.  AND probably pay anywhere from $30.00-$50.00 for it. (gasp)  (Can you tell not too much of a fan of these adventures these days...I know Bah, Humbug).

    But this year, since I have been sick and we have a 7 month old baby we "cheated" and bought it at a local church tree lot. It was the easiest Christmas tree "adventure"  that I can ever recall.  I didn't even get out of the van.  My husband and 12 yr old picked it out, the tree lot volunteer hauled it to our van, put it on our roof, tied it down and off we went.  We were in and out of there in 10 mins!  Heck , you can't even go through a fast food drive thru that fast.

    It was nice too because the trees were donated to the church tree lot to sell which is why they were able to turn around and sell them for cheap-cheap.  And the best part of it, is not only was it good on our pocket book, but the money they make is going to the Missions that East Hill support. 


    It is a Win, Win, Win situation if you ask me. 

    WIN for not having to traipse around in the cold looking for the perfect tree
    WIN for our pocket book
    WIN for the missions that the money is supporting


    Here is our $10.00 tree...















    And our Nativity Scene on top of our mantel...




    And here is our Hayden using the tree skirt as a blanky...












    All in unison now....Ahhhh...

    Poached

    Awhile back I did a post on making home made Egg and Cheese Breakfast Sandwhiches, kind of like the ones you can buy at Starbucks, but without the hefty price tag. 

    I am taking it one step further.  Instead of cooking the eggs in a muffin tin so they come out perfectly round, I have purchased a "microwave egg poacher." 

    Didn't I tell you I like to cut corners?  Any time I can shave a few minutes off what ever I am doing without compromising the end result, I am there...


    Anyways, back to the egg poacher.  I bought one at Ross for $2.99!  And so far it has worked wonderfully.   I made myself an egg and cheese breakfast sandwhich yesterday morning using my new gadget.

    It is so simple to use.  You break an egg into each side of the poacher.  Poke the yolk with a fork, add a teaspoon of water to each side, close and snap lid. Microwave for 1 min or so with two eggs.  I only did one egg so I microwaved for 45 seconds. 

    Toast my english muffin, slap the egg onto the muffin, add a slice of cheese and/or canadian bacon or ham.  Fold into a paper towel and microwave for 30 seconds for cheese to melt.  (If you add canadian bacon or ham I would recommend heating that up separately for a little bit longer).

    There you have it...It is quick, it is easy and it is cheap!  No more excuses to pay $3.00-$4.00 for that breakfast sandwhich when you can make your own at a fraction of the price!





    You can also use the grill side of the poacher to reheat pre cooked breakfast meats such as sausage, bacon, ham, etc....

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