Something to hold on to...

"Today I am one day nearer home than ever before. One day nearer the dawning when the fog will lift, mysteries clear, and all question marks straighten up into exclamation points!
 I shall see the King!"     Vance Havner

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Frugal Update

In case you are missing my "frugal -look what I bought for pennies- posts", I have pretty much taken a break from shopping.  We just do not need much at all.  The stockpile is huge and we are living out of that  and the  freezer and pantry.  I did go to the grocery after we got back from our trip to replenish a few things, but mostly I am using up what we have.  I am saving money and adding a bit back into savings after vacation spending.  
I am still buying my Sunday papers, because a great coupon is always good to have.  When the next Kmart doubles rolls around, I am sure I will be there.  I just am not chasing every deal right now, because my past deals are serving me well.  
I think they only thing I really need right now are potatoes.  That and milk.  We ALWAYS need milk. 

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Getting back into the swing of things...

Gee, it is hard to un-vacation.  (made up word , I know)

I do have the suitcases empty, all nestled together and placed in the closet.  I bought new suitcases for this trip because all we had were a collection of old, somewhat broken down , suitcases that were currently housing my winter wardrobe.  I decided that a nice set of designated "trip only" suitcases were in order.  We have another trip coming up and it is about time we had a decent set of luggage.  These were on sale and an extra 30% off so the time was right.   They served us well on this trip.  

I do still have odds and ends all over the place  from vacation yet to deal with.  I did put a dent in that today, but there is still more later to finally put away.  

Like I said yesterday, it is HOT here.  What a shock to the system to go from fall temps to blazing hot summer overnight!  Thank you God for our air conditioner.  

I am missing my bargains and deals, and I am sure that before the week is out I will have to make a few trips to satisfy my urges.  Any amazing deals out there? 

While I am working through the house, I am also playing a lot on the computer (10 days without was causing withdrawal symptoms).  

Look at what I did at a neat site,

That is our cat, Abby and I just put her in a museum!   I played around yesterday with some baby pictures and they were adorable!

Monday, June 22, 2009


One of my favorite scenes from the trip
Yum, dinner on the patio at the condo.


View on our way up Mt. Greylock
Along our way to the summit of Mt. Greylock
On Mt. Greylock, along a trail.

One Happy Guy!

Hubby at The National Baseball Hall of Fame


View from our condo.
Our kitchen
Living room / Dining room

Wow is not a good enough word, but I said it about 1000 times in the last 10 days.  Eastern Massachusetts is just gorgeous.  We spent our vacation in the Berkshires and they live up to their reputation.  I am amazed at what God did in His creation.  

We had a fantastic time and went to a bunch of places!  Here is the quick list :
  • First night in Erie, PA-  we ate  at a fun  place, Quaker Steak and Lube then drove up to Lake Erie for a bit 
  • Arrived at our condo in the Berkshires.  Ahhhh.  Nice place, good accommodations,  cool temperatures (returned home to sweltering heat)  It rained a lot, but we managed to dodge the raindrops enough to have a lot of fun.  
  • Visited Vermont 3 times,  The Bennington Pottery place is disappointing.  When you have a son who throws clay on a wheel to make pottery it is sad to see pressed pieces sold as "hand-made" 
  • Bought maple syrup and great cheeses in Vermont
  • Drove down to Connecticut just to say we did, then  turned around and headed right back
  • Went to 4 museums:  The Norman Rockwell, The Clark (art collection) The National Baseball Hall of Fame, and The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  Something for everyone. 
  • Went to Mt. Greylock, the highest point in Massachusetts. 3,491 feet.  Not a record by any means, but when you consider that we live in a town with an elevation of 597 feet, it is impressive.   We drove to the summit and then climbed a tower that was 92 feet tall to look out . 
  • Stepped foot on the Appalachian trail.   Okay, I walked on it for about 10 feet. Interesting story there. 
  • Went to Stockbridge, Mass. /  Saw the famous Red Lion Inn--did not eat there, lunch would have been at least $75.00 for 3 of us. 
  • Saw scenery that takes your breath away
  • Laid out by the pool, in 64 degree temps!  It was sunny enough to keep us warm and the pool was heated. 
  • Cooked most all of our meals at the condo.
  • Loved The National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, Ny.    Quaint town, shops line the streets for about 4 blocks, mostly with a baseball theme.
  • Rocked in Cleveland at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  We found it interesting that some of our favorites are not inducted yet.  ( I kept saying indicted --big difference)
  • Rested, watched movies, ate on the patio, and generally felt blessed to go on such a great trip!  
  • OUCH---spent $5.99 for one gallon of milk when we ran out mid-week.  A trip to town is at least 20 minutes one way so we bought a gallon at the resort across the road, it had a "grocery store".  I sure am glad that I am frugal on most days! 

Friday, June 5, 2009

Chicken and Strawberries

I could live on those two foods.  Well almost, I must get my potato quotient in there.

Last week bone-in chicken breasts were on special for 88 cents a pound.  I bought about 16 pounds.  I roasted most of it (some I pulled off the bone after roasting, some I left as is and  we will thaw those and throw them on the grill for a few minutes all sauced up) , I  de-boned some of it into boneless -skinless breasts and tenders ,  cooked down any trimmings into a delicious broth,  and now I have it all divided up in the freezer.  Today we purchased strawberries at 49 cents a pound!  Husband and I both bought some so now my freezer is packed with an assortment of sliced and sweetened, crushed and frozen ( I will pull those back out to make jam when I am ready) , and a tray of whole berries that are freezing individually so I can bag them whole later.  

Shopping the way I do (stockpiling) allows me to take advantage of the really big sales without feeling that my family will suffer that week if I put most of my grocery money into one or two items.  

Even if I spend all my grocery money on a few items, there is always something in my freezer or pantry that I bought up on a previous sale and I make my meals from what I have on hand.  

I love being frugal.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Return to Blogging

School is out now and I really hope to keep this up a bit better.  As I sit here today there is a gentle rain coming down so I am naturally forced inside today.  My flowers will get a drink and I will get to focus on the inside of the house.

I have many projects that I want to work through this summer.  A few have already been accomplished and  today I should knock off a few more.  We are getting ready for vacation soon.  Can I just tell the world how very excited I am about this year's vacation?  This is HUGE to me after what we went through last summer and I plan to soak up every possible bit of joy there is to be had.  

We will be going to  gorgeous area in Massachusetts.  I have never been to that state, so I will add another one or two on my list.  I need to learn how to spell it though since I am going there. (thank goodness for spell check)  We will focus on mostly scenic, outdoor activities,  and just relax!  

I am taking an unofficial break from crazy couponing.  I will still buy the papers if I think they will benefit me, but I have a huge stockpile now and I do not want the stockpile to outlive my family.  There is just so much toothpaste one can use.  Actually it is time to thin it out and give a goodie box to someone in need.   I just do not feel the need to chase every bargain.  We will live out of our freezer, pantry, and stockpile for a while.  My grocery bills over the last month have been quite small because of all of this and that excites me.  This way of shopping really pays off.   I am sure I will take advantage of the super deals out there, I made $8.00 this week at Walgreen's and I won't stop doing those deals (Ecotrin aspirin, I bought 4 boxes with coupons that made them free, then got back $2.00 on each in register rewards--I paid a total of 8 cents and made back $8.00)   I just am slowing way down for a while.  Don't worry, I am not going back to my old ways.  I will return in full force later on.  I am too good at this to stop.  Ha. 

More posting to come so check back more often.