Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Can I get a C-O-U-P-O-N

We went shopping! We went to two different places, Krogers and Meijers the local favs in Ohio.
Before we start, let me just say if you take your kids take your Husband...or you'll never make it out alive. If you don't take your kids...take your Husband, it goes faster, and it's a fun bonding'd be surprised how fun it is when you save that money and get excited. Hey financial troubles are the number one cause of why not have a reason to celebrate being together over saving money.

It was a little hectic, and we didn't use coupons on everything, but we got it all on sale. Like the green peppers at Krogers were .59 each, which is a great price, so I bought 5 to cut up and freeze for later suppers. The sweet onions were .59 a lb, so I got three of those to cut up for later also.
Meijers has Chef Boyardee 5/5.00 and get a free Hunts pudding pack free (.88 value), but while we were shopping we found the Chef Boyardee Mini Dinosaurs for .76 and you still get the pudding pack free.
Your limited to one per transaction, so I went to the quick scan, and did it twice, and my husband once. So we got 15 cans of pasta, and 3- 4 pack of puddings for less than $13.

We had fun and saved some money.  Our total cost was 90.60, our total coupon savings 80.32. That also includes four $5 coupons we got for buying 4 general mills items at Krogers (which we had coupons for.)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Catch up day!

I haven't posted in awhile, because so many things have been happening. My husband went to the hospital, and they went through everything to find out nothing so far. They are treating from Sarcoidosis which is a rare autoimmune disease, but we wont know the results of his biopsy until next week.

We put our faith in God, paid our tithes which was going to leave us with about $100. But we had everything we needed, gas in the car, groceries, and bills paid.  So thankful that God is so good, because he laid it on someones heart to give my husband a card, filled with money. Enough to carry us until he gets his sick pay. Thank you Jesus!

So since he is unable to work, and I only work part time, it was important that we save as much money as possible until he gets back on his feet. So I dived into the disease know as extreme couponing. I have spent 2 hours cutting out coupons, and 3 hours searching the web, and printing out coupons.

I am excited to say that I have found some wonderful coupon sites, and look forward to going shopping and saving as much money as possible. With 5 kids to feed, it was important to get as much as possible and spend as little as possible.

Here are some sites that I really liked :,,,,
They give you all the deals, show you how to get free stuff, and help you save save save.
My personal favorites are, and because you can make a shopping list. If you have a Facebook page, there are plenty of places to "Like" and get coupons, and freebies.

The Krazy Coupon Lady has a wonderful example of how to start couponing with a binder and has printable pages.

Well I have done my research, and ready to go shopping. I will update and let you know how I did.
Don't get discouraged if your just starting, the hassle is worth the savings.

Thursday, February 10, 2011


So, we live in the freezing cold tundra called OHIO. The weather this winter has been disastrous to say the least. We had freezing rain, then snow, then rain, then snow...oh when will summer come? I would take 30 degree weather at this point, because 8 degrees makes my nose hairs freeze inside my nose.

Well thanks to that freezing rain, I went to my new job and fell and almost broke my ankle. They said it was just sprained, but the jury is still out on that because as it heals, the pain increases and my toes and the bottom of my foot turns a darker purple. SO now I need to go see a specialist and make sure I didn't tear any ligaments or tendons...oh that makes me hurt thinking about it. On top of that everyone has had the flu...EXCEPT me! Whew, but of course everyone is sick and I have to lay on the couch with my foot propped instead of making home made soup, sanitizing, and babying everyone. Boo.

In the midst of all this craziness I have managed to sell all of my rabbits but two, and then acquire fresh ones. I just didn't have the right colors, to go with everything, so I decided to get rid of them, and we purchased the most beautiful, friendly and stoic rabbit named Sophia. She weighs in at a whopping 10lbs, she is a French Lop. She has one 4 best of breeds at the shows, so I am looking forward to breeding and showing her. I got her a friend named George, but he is to young to breed right now, but they will make wonderful babies when they do breed.
As for other rabbits, we were able to purchase some Mini Rex in phenomenal colors, of black, broken black, blue, lilac, and chocolate.
Last but not least we got a Giant Flemish rabbit we named Athena, she is a beautiful girl as well, and I have yet to pick up her counter part the lovely black buck. She has Grand Champions in her blood line so this will be interesting to see how she does at the shows. Our first show is Feb 27, and we are excited.

Recently we had a problem with a buck that wanted to be to aggressive and bit my daughter and I while we were trying to feed him. The woman I purchased him off suggested some ways to help show him who is boss, because he is trying to enforce dominance on us. So for those of you who ever run into this kind of problem I hope this method helps you. This is a direct quote from my 4H friend.

 flick his nose when he does that.  actually i would pull him out quick and put him in pose condition, flip him over play with his feet then in pose then back over and do that several times to let him know who the boss is.  I wouldn't tolerate that behavior.  I am so sorry.  he should learn to be respectful quick if you work with him a bit in a quick straight on fast way to get him in order. 
i had a rabbit get fidgety on me but they know they work harder when they are fidgety so they give in easier.  : )

It did work a little for me, but he was so overly aggressive I had to cull him. And for those of you who don't know, cull means to get rid of by selling or to kill. Well I don't have the heart to sell him to someone that will also probably get bit, nor am i able to kill him with my own hands. My lovely neighbor on the other hand has 7 dogs, and well needless to say they had a good exercise trying to catch that varmint. I know it sounds mean, but trust me after you get bit by a rabbit, and then he tries to box you like Muhammad Ali, the only thing you want to do is throw him to the wolves. At least I didn't make him into stew, and he's actually still out there, the dogs couldn't catch him.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Happy New Year

Happy New Year! Where has the time gone? Do you remember when your were a kid thinking it took forever till your birthday or till Christmas. Felt like it would never end. Now that your older you wish it would come to a screeching halt! for just a few weeks so you could enjoy the time instead of it passing you by? I have had to realize that life goes very fast. My older three children are all hitting the adolescent age...ahh! My daughter said she doesn't want to shave! Good for her stay a kid even if it means you will have to put on extra deodorant so your not stinky! And what is with my 9 year old having hair under his arms. He's not ready to be a teen yet! SCREECHING HALT!

I have gotten used to the idea they will grow up and I will get old, but I look forward to the day when I can be a granma and give granma kisses and spoil kids who aren't mine, but they are a direct lineage of me...then I can send them home spoiled and rotten, and my kids can say you never let me do that. Ya darn right I didn't! hahaha

So what has the New year brought you? Well I got into the tedious task of Couponing. Who knew it was such a pain in the butt. I thought I could clip and shop, but no... people, there is a science to this let me tell you. The first night I clipped and searched sales it took me 4 hours. I went to the store and came out crying because I spent $50. Where was the saving in that? The next time I went I did my research better and I actually came out with a cart full of groceries for $90!!! I saved $90 with coupons!!! It was wonderful and now I'm hooked.

Here's what I have figured out. Clip all your coupons, and you can search the web sites like or, to get some of the good deals and more coupons. I like to look at coupon mom (has great tutorial) to get an idea, but I am very much a hands on person, so I take all the ads from the newspaper and circle everything I have a coupon for that I want and that is on sale, then I make a list of who has the better savings with the coupons I have Krogers has soup 10/$10, and CVS has it Buy one can get on free and they are $1, I have two coupons for $0.40 off three cans of soup. I pick the one who has a better deal.

 Krogers and Meijers double their coupons, so if I have a $0.40 coupon, I will get an additional $0.40 off, so that a total savings of $0.80. Once i have decided which stores I want to use the coupons with I put them in a file and go shopping with the ad in hand, so I don't have to rummage through coupons I can just look at my ad. Sometimes they let you use more than one coupon on the same item as well. CVS and Walgreens have the extra bucks coupons, but sometimes it feels as if you just spending to get their free coupons.

My best deal was at Krogers the razors were buy one get one free, and I had 4 $2.00 off coupons. I ended up paying $4.00 for 4 packs of razors that at regular price would have cost me $28. YEAH!
It is time consuming and tedious but worth the effort. I spent a total of $230, and with the coupons and sales I saved a total of $210, with $5 spending bucks at CVS and Walgreens.

Happy Clipping Ya'll

Monday, December 6, 2010

Scrub a dub dub soaking in the tub... or someone that bought my scrubs are.

On top of having 5 kids, a dog, 10 rabbits in my rabbitry...some of whom are pregnant, a job, a blog, gardening, composting, and baking, Ebay business, I have decided to get a hobby. I have always wondered how women start there own business, and was certain I did not have any good ideas.

 I began making salt and sugar scrubs for my husband during the winter because his skin would get so dry he would itch constantly. So to save my arm from falling off from all the back scratching I made a home made sugar scrub, and it worked wonderfully. The result: smooth soft skin that was moisturized for days. YEAH!

Well, recently my church had it's annual Christmas Bazaar, so I decided to make and sell my home made salt and sugar scrubs, bath salts and powders. The first day I did one was interested, but the next day I placed some samples scrubs in the bath room, and it was a hit. People were able to try my product and realize how wonderful they worked. I did well enough I decided to participate in another bazaar. I woke up excited and ready to go, just to walk out into the SNOW....why Ohio? Why do you have the most ironic weather on earth? Sunny and beautiful and boom snow, and anyone that has ever visited Dayton OH in the rain or snow knows people don't drive well at all, like it's something new they have never seen before. So they just don't get out.

My friend Angie and I had a great time eating soup (10 different flavors...mmm mmm good) and socializing. I was able to make a little money but not what I had hoped. But God has always got a plan, the woman next to me invited to make baskets of my products and sell them at a Quarter Auction.
What a blast. If you have never been, it's great. I was able to actually make money for my products and my husband won a massage all in the same day. Talk about fabulous.

I have decided to name my company Melody of Hope after my beautiful daughters who help me make my products. It's good family time, and helps put a little extra in our pockets for things we need around the house.

I am excited to do another quarter auction, and get my name out there. Who knows between a rabbitry, and hobby maybe I can make a little extra money.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Digging In the City (my experience in homesteading in the city): Ahh The Holidays...have wore me out already

Digging In the City (my experience in homesteading in the city): Ahh The Holidays...have wore me out already

Ahh The Holidays...have wore me out already

Ok, so doing it the home made way takes a little more gusto than just going to the store, buying a pie and popping it in the oven. I found a great deal on sweet potatoes, and bought 50lbs...yes I said 50, thinking what a great save. I can make the pies I need and ...freeze some for christmas pies.
I made 10 delicious Sweet Potato pies, and stayed up all night the night before Thanksgiving just making the crust and pies filling from scratch. I was so tired that I decided to transport the pies to Indianapolis and bake them in the hotel oven when we got there. Well needless to say it sounded good, and it worked, but I REALLY should have started these pies earlier. All in all they were a success at the cost of my sleep though.
So what about the other 25lbs of sweet potatoes? you ask. There still in the fridge. Yep, I was so exhausted after our trip, because our car battery died, so we called AAA, then we still had to pick up some rabbits in South Indianapolis for our rabbitry, and go see family on the way out...we didn't get home till 11:30 Friday night. Our plan was to be home at 3. Ooops. hahaha such is life.

One lovely concoction came up in my effort to get rid of some of my sweet potatoes though. It's a delicious treat if you want something sweet, but good for you (hard to come by these days.) It's a twist on a roasted potato fries recipe I make. It's a little gooey, but so good hot or cold. You'll see I'm not a cook book author when you read my recipe, but it's easy to follow.

Baked Sweet Potato Fries w/ maple syrup

4 Sweet Potatoes cut into strips (skin on or off)
2 tbls. Olive Oil
1/4 c. Maple Syrup
Pinch of Cinnamon, Nutmeg or Pumpkin Spice
1/4 c. Demera Sugar (or what ever you have)

Set oven to 450 degrees, cut sweet potatoes into strips or wedges, place in a bowl and drizzle olive oil, maple syrup, mix in spices and sugar. Toss until all the potatoes are covered, add more if desired.
Place on cookie sheet, and bake for 35 min. If you want crispier fries, only toss in olive oil and add the maple syrup, sugar and spices after they have baked.

I served this with Turkey burgers and corn, and snacked on the fries the next day. My son who is a junk food junkie loved them, and ate a bunch, but I didn't mind cause it was good for him.  Happy Holidays.