Monday, August 25, 2008

Keeping the littleones busy!

Our babysitter was off both on Thursday and Friday, when I'm home with our two little girls I find that things go a lot smoother if I have something new and fun planned each day. To go along with Amy's Notebook experiments over at I decided to make some edible play-dough (peanut butter edition). Let me tell you that the girls had a blast, while eating snack and playing with play-dough. I did not have my camera handy to snap a shot of them, however let me see if I can paint you a picture.

I am about to the end of my rope separating the girls ages 2 1/2 and 1 1/2. The oldest one loves to be independent and boss the youngest around. The littlest likes to follow her big sis around and copy everything that she does....needless to say, a few hours of un-organized play is enough to do them both in.

As I stated above, I have decided that having a planned activity besides the typical going to the park, going out back on the swing set, going on a walk, etc.

So I was searching around Amy's notebook experiments earlier in the week trying to find something that would be fun for the girls. I came up with a simple recipe with powdered sugar (2 cups), peanut butter (1 cup), and honey (1/4 cup) I let the oldest help me mix it, she kept asking me if we were making cookies, when I told her it was play dough she looked at me like I was crazy!! I got out some old cookie cutters and they had a blast flattening it, eating it, shaping it, eating it, rolling it out, eating it.... :) So that's it for my experiment! It was great! The girls loved it! I had some moments of non-fighting...if you want to call it that!


Saturday, August 9, 2008

Home Improvements!

My husband and I have been contemplating upgrading our heating and adding a cooling system since we bought our house. Last year we were paying $400 a month during the winter for propane just to heat the house. We have had two estimates done, and it appears that it will be roughly $8000 to change our heating over from hot water heating, to forced air heating, add air conditioning, and then also change our hot water heater over to electric. The estimate that we chose to go with also is going to be upgrading our breaker box. My husband and I have $4000 that we have saved for this and my mom and dad have graciously decided that they would like to cover the other half! We are SOOO blessed! I will let you know more about this process as soon as we begin!! I hope everything goes well!


Phone Call

So, I came home from work one day this week and on my answering machine was the manager of the Taco Bell that I talked about in a previous post. The manager proceeded to justify why they no longer carry milk and the best he could come up with was that they "had no way to properly store it so that it did not spoil before someone bought it and that they did not want to serve substandard items to their customers?! Have they never heard of a fridge? HA! I find it silly, however was impressed that he called within a few days of me submitting a complaint!


Monday, August 4, 2008

Strangest Thing

So, my husband and I both had today off so we decided to do our once a month shopping at Walmart. The closest Walmart to us is about an hour away so we only make the trip once a month. The reason I am telling you this story is because this is also one of the times we go out to eat with our two little girls. Today we chose to eat at Taco John's and get this, when I asked for milk, the guy taking our order looked at me weird and said, "Um, we don't have milk." To that I said, "No milk?" He said, no, but we have water?!" Are you kidding me? What restaurant doesn't have milk??? I have gone to the website and put in a "complaint". Seriously! I would have never thought I would have had a problem getting milk anywhere!!

Have any of you had this problem?


Friday, August 1, 2008

Saturday Snail Mail

I have decided to begin putting together a list of things to blog about on a weekly basis and have decided that the one day that I am going to start with is Saturday. I'm going to call it Saturday Snail Mail nice huh?! My goal for the Saturday Snail Mail edition is to keep track weekly of all of the "goodies" that I get in the mail. I am actually going to post the first edition today as my in laws will be here later in the day and will stay through the weekend.

This week in the mail I received:

  • SunSilk Straight to Perfection Shampoo/Conditioner & $1 coupon x2
  • Ponds Clean Sweep Cleansing towelette (Walmart)
  • Huggies Size 3 diaper & Wipe (Walmart)

I know this week isn't very much, but I didn't keep track very well either, so we will see the list grow hopefully next week.

~ Katie

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Cean Carpet? What's that?

So, I have officially gone off the deep end! My husband and I are preparing for his parents arrival this weekend. For some reason I got an itch this morning to steam clean the carpets?! What is wrong with me? It's 100 degrees out and I sure could have found something better to do with my time! It's been awhile since the in laws have been up from Kansas so I wanted to make sure things looked clean! Last year at Christmas my parents got us a steam cleaner for our carpets, I am embarrassed to say that before today I had only used it ONCE! I had told myself that I would use it all of the time when we actually got it. I had plans to get it out after every spill or when I saw the need. What was I thinking? I spent about an hour on our living room carpet and it looks GrEaT, just like new... I have now decided that it really wasn't as bad/hard/time consuming as I once thought it was and have put steam cleaning the carpets on my monthly "To Do" list. It's really amazing how many of the "spots" from sippys that leaked disappeared like magic!! Thanks mom and dad much cheaper than renting the equipment or hiring someone else to do it! All in all I spent approx. $6 on the solution


Wednesday, July 16, 2008


So, I've recently received an e-mail from FrugalDad in regards to CashCrate. I have been a member for awhile but actually forgot I even had an account. He states that a person can earn $10 the first time they log i. I am going back through the site and attempting this again. I will keep you posted on how I do!! For those of you who are interested in what CashCrate is, head on over to FrugalDad where he answers questions people have had. If you would like to join, just follow the link, the more people that follow...the more sign up bonus' I receive!!! :)


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

College Frustrations!

Wow! It's been a long time since I have had time to sit down and pt some thought into a post. However, I have been thoroughly frustrated with the college that I attend and the financial aid process. I currently am taking one class every six weeks, however currently I am taking two classes. I received an e-mail on Monday of last week stating that my account balance was $5000 over due. "Wait a minute" I said to myself...I am only half way through my year (I started in October) I have been working on getting a private loan since January to cover the extra that financial aid will not cover. So, to make a long story short, both my private loan as well as the Stafford loans are set to be disbursed in August....guess what?! They need my $5000 in order for me to keep taking classes and are refusing to work with me even though I have these two loans coming through in August! Ugh!! I am/was so frustrated!!! I can't believe these people are allowed to do this?! I told the financial aid lady that I was not frustrated with her but that I think that all college students need to take a financial aid class before they are allowed to attend college!!! She laughed and agreed! Has anyone else had a similar experience?

~ Katie

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Hy-Vee - Shopping for work

I was asked today to go to the store and get a meal for the students on our dorm (I work for a facility that helps juvenile delinquent males and females). I am often asked to go on these runs as I generally spend less than the average person that does not use a budget. So, I went out to the store with a $100 budget to feed 40 people lunch at the zoo tomorrow and a snack. This would have come out to about $2.50 per person, which I thought was pretty good. However after going through the checkout, I came up with a grand total of...get this...$75.50, which comes up to about 1.89 per person. I don't know about you, but I was proud to bring back the receipt to my supervisor. He looked and me and the first thing he asked was if I forgot something! HA! If only he knew how easy it was!!!

Some of the great prices at Hy-Vee I got were:

Bread $0.79 (haven't seen that price in awhile)
Bottled Water $2.79 for a 24 pack!! WOW!
80 Slices of cheese for $5.99
10 pounds of ham for 12.99 (shaved thin for sandwiches)

Not that being frugal matters to a multi-million dollar company, but my supervisor was impressed! :)


Monday, May 19, 2008


So, I was a little skeptical when signing up with Ebates, as I really don't understand where the money they are paying their customers comes from, however...I'm sold on it now!! I have only made one purchase online since I signed up and just got a check for a little over $21 in the mail!!! How exciting!! I just made another purchase from the other day, so my account is going to get added to again! Nothing like free money!!


Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Long time...

It has been such a long time since I have had the chance to get on this thing and get to work!! There are so many things going on in our neck of the woods this time of year that I am meeting myself coming and going. There are some major things that we have accomplished over the past couple of weeks, the first being getting all of our clothing changed out! What a chore, although I have to admit that I love love love spending time cleaning out the drawers in order to bring in the "new" or not so new but newly unpacked from totes! We have also begun planting our garden for the year, planted a ground covering on our "cave" in the back yard, we have been putting more effort into our yard this year and have several things in the works! I am excited as summer is around the corner and so close I can almot taste it!!

~ Katie

Update - Poop Wars

So, I wish I had better news, however we are still waiting on success with the poop wars!! It's rather sad at this point, my husband and mother have to remind me daily to just let her do it in her own time. Part of our problem is that she is SO strong willed. She has been telling stories with her dolls lately thought telling them they need to start pooping in the "big girl potty", so I remain hopeful!


Monday, April 21, 2008

Poop Wars

So, I have now decided that so far in the two and a half years of being a parent that getting my child to poop on the potty has been the most emotionally draining thing for bothmy daughter AND me. Tonight was the third day she had decided no to go poopy, she had been crying off and on throughout the night that she had to go, however she would not. It was quite the emotional experience tonight and still no results! What to do, I do not know, however what I do know, is that eventhough it will be expensive, we are going back to diapers full time at this point and when she is tired of getting changed, maybe she will ask to go. I will keep you updated...

~ Katie

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


So, I have a problem and am wondering if anyone else has been through the same thing. My two year old is all but potty trained. She is dry at night and goes all day pottying on the big girl potty, however she will not POOP! Oh my word, we have tried everything!!! We have bribed her, praised her, read to her, etc. However, she will not do it!! She has "accidently" done it about thee times or so. She comes home from daycare and asks to put a diaper on! Who would have thought this is where we would be?!!! Any advice?


Saturday, April 12, 2008

What a Saturday!

I am currently at home with my sick husband sleeping (he worked from 11pm last night two 7am this morning, eventhough he is sick) one year old, who is also sick but thankfully tucked away sleeping at the moment...and my two year old who wants to get out of the house! It is currently blowing this white stuff all around outside, however thankfully it is not stickin and I hear that by Tuesday it is going to hit 70!!! I can't wait!!

Today I am trying to get caught up on laundry and the usual weekly cleaning. Not to mention my daily dose of college! So much for a nice realxing weekend after a long weekend of work!! :)

Now on to the brighter things in life! I recently received a package of diapers (Pampers) free from and get to write a review on them when I am done! I am so excited as this is my first offer that I have gotten a free item in exchange for my opinion! What a great thing! I am so excited to see what else might come my way this month!


Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Free bed?!

Our oldest (Brooke) that is now 29 months has already "grown out" of her toddler bed. Well, I'm not sure if you could call it grown out...but she doesn't sleep like the normal person, she likes to lay sideways in the bed. Anyway, my husband and I have been contemplating over the past several weeks on what to do about this. Out of nowhere, while walking with a couple of co-workers, one of the gals asked if anyone needed a day bed! So, it looks like we have a frugal answer to our question on what we are going to do for Brooke! We were thinking that we could use our tax stimulus to get a bed for her, but looks like we can put this money to use where we had originally thought it would go (towards our debt snowball)! So, I am excited to say that we now have a "new" (to us anyway) bed.


Saturday, April 5, 2008

The first trip to the zoo this year...

Our two year old little girl Brooke loves animals. Last year, shortly after her little sister was born (Lauren) we took a trip to the zoo for something new that she would enjoy! Boy was it a hit! She talked and talked and talked about all of the animals and the trip for several months. So this year, my husband and I decided that it would be a nice cheap thing to invest in a zoo pass so that we could go more often this summer. So, our goal is to go at least 4 times so that we are getting good use out of the pass!

Today was a beautiful day to go, so off we went...she has been asking when we can go, so when we finally got there (it's about 2 hours away in Omaha, NE) it was a if we had been feeding her sugar for days! HA! It is such as joy to see happiness like that in a little one!

We had a wonderful day! Hopefully I will be able to figure out how to get some pictures up!!


Saturday, March 29, 2008

Is it Spring yet?

Finally, it looks like Spring is around the corner. Due to this, I got a sudden itch to begin my Spring Cleaning routine. Thanks to Amy at MomAdvice for writing these things down, I have had to put little thought into the process this year thanks to her! Thanks Amy! So I now have my Kitchen done, tomorrow I think I need to begin going through my girls' clothing! That is going to be a tough task!

~ Katie

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

So much for that!

Well, I guess so much for that! I have now decided that this whole blog thing is a lot harder than it looks when you are going to college full time, work full time and have two little girls under the age of 3!!! So, I have decided to come at it from a different angle and not promise to do anything.

I am sitting here right now with my 3 year old getting ready to convince her that it's time for bed!!


Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Tax Returns 2007

For my first big "article" I think I will talk a little bit about tax returns and what we have done with the money that we "got back" from the federal government.

I hope to follow up this segment with some frugal ideas for how to handle all of that money at once. It is important for me to use the money wisely rather than just buying "stuff" to clutter our home.

If you have any frugal things that you have done with your tax returns, please post your thoughts and ideas!


Monday, March 3, 2008

Today's Frugal Acts

So, I thought for this year I would try to keep track of the frugal acts that I have done on a day by day basis. Today, the frugal things that I did were:

1) Washed two loads of laundry in cold water, I would have hung them out on the line, however we just got a snow storm last night.

2) Made a casserole in the oven and opened up the door afterward in order to warm our chilly house.

3) Kept the thermostat at 58, turned on a small space heater in both my girls bedroom and our bedroom.

4) Only turned on one light at a time in the house.

Well, that's all I can think of that I have done today!!! I hope to increase the number of things I am able to do on a weekly basis!

I have an almost one year old to put to bed now, till tomorrow...


Sunday, March 2, 2008

Is this for real?

Hello all - this is so strange for me! I have been a quiet member of the blogging community for around a year now and never thought when I first was starting out, that I would begin one of my own! I am so impressed with all of the wonderful people out there putting their thoughts down on living frugally with a family and know that I will not come close to what they have accomplished. I only hope to be half as good as they are!

So, here is to my new adventure!