HELLO THERE

“A blog?” My kid asked, “Why a blog?”  He screwed his face up like it was the most ridiculous thing he has ever heard of, However despite what my 16 going on 30 son might think, HERE WE ARE!!!!  I was diagnosed with clinical depression plus anxiety with panic attacks years ago and it has honestly been an uphill battle.  Most of the time if you try and talk about it, people simply don’t understand.  Unless you have experienced it firsthand or have a loved one who battles themselves then you probably are shall we say, in the dark.  Depression is more than being sad.  Anxiety does not have make sense. These are real opponents that do not release you off the mat until you have cried uncle.  There is a stigma on people who admit to the outsiders that they have an illness.   Then you add regular ordinary life to the mix and it gets pretty interesting.  I am a mom of 3 who are trying their best to grow up while mom deals with her issues and attempts to be normal. Whatever the definition of that is!  So, depression will be talked about here but we will not dwell on it.  We will search for reasons to get out of bed and at least put something on besides pajamas.  There are 4 categories here:  Home (blog Page),  D.I.M. (Did It Myself), Your Daily Dose, and Making Food.  Check out the pages. Leave comments.  Share Posts.  Invite friends to do the same.  I will be adding more as we go along.  So be sure not to miss what’s going on!  Again, WELCOME FRIENDS!

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Dear Mom, From Your Daughter In College WARNING: A TEAR JERKER

My Middle Child, Elyssa, is in college.  She is gone quite a lot for classes and studying and tons of homework.  Her times home are so quick it sometimes sadder when she does finally come home.  We call and text as often as humanly possible, and even that becomes hard when life is so busy on both ends.  Today we texted good morning back and forth and chatted for a bit and then she sent me this link and followed it with I love you.  I followed the link and read the post. Once I wiped my eyes clear of all the tears and calmed down I made a decision.   It was so very special I decided to share it here on my blog.  To all the parents raising kids is really hard.  Letting go is even harder.  Yet I must say from personal experience it is rewarding when you see them becoming their own person, and you begin to feel you have contributed in a positive way.

God Bless Everyone.  This link will take you away from our website, but we hope you come back real soon!

 

 

https://www.theodysseyonline.com/dear-mom-college-daughter

 

What do I do about Halloween? A Guide for Christian Understanding

DISCLAIMER: THIS POST IS WRITTEN FROM MY PERSONAL POINT OF VIEW ACCORDING TO THE HOLY BIBLE AND MY UNDERSTANDING OF THE SCRIPTURES AND HISTORY ON THE SUBJECT MATTER. All scripture is from the Amplified Bible for better understanding.

I arrived at the local dollar tree to purchase a few new fall decorations while we are still experiencing 100-degree weather.  I love decorating for each season, and quite honestly I need Fall to kick Summer’s butt out of here!  All our stores are getting beautiful sweaters, long sleeve t-shirts, and hoodies, yet you can hardly breathe from the humidity when you step outside.  Nevertheless, I was determined to get in the mood for Autumn, one way or the other.  I transferred my sweltering body behind where two women stood in deep conversation in front of the fall leaves and pumpkin signs.

I could not help but overhear.  The discussion was Halloween.  One woman celebrated.  The other woman did not.  Now in this wonderful country that we live in where we have many freedoms, the lady who celebrated endeavored to convince the non-celebrator why she should be celebrating.  The conversation ended abruptly, with the non-celebrator responding by saying, “I know what I believe.  And I do not celebrate it.  Love you. Gotta go.”

Now because I overthink things too much that moment, obviously, has not left my mind.  I have my beliefs and I adhere to them.  If someone asks me, I will share with them what I believe.  But I have never been one to demand that others believe like me.  I will explain the reasons why I feel like I do, and allow you to make your own decisions.  1 Corinthians 6:12 is always a good way to begin, Everything is permissible for me, but not all things are beneficial. Everything is permissible for me, but I will not be enslaved by anything [and brought under its power, allowing it to control me].

That being said, I will share my personal views and what the Word of God says about this holiday that is called Halloween.  You know the name is even a bit strange.  The Catholic Church deemed Nov. 1 as All Saints Day, the day before became known as All Hallows Eve, and because humans are lazy it soon became Halloween.  Now, in the other communities lesser known to us, October 31 is called Samhain Eve, (pronounced SOW-in, SAH-in, or SAM-Hayne).  Samhain is the end of Harvest time, celebrating the end of summer and the beginning of the winter, or the darker time of the year.  Samhain is a time to remember those who have passed on or Feast of the dead and even Day of the Dead. The Druids and the Celtics would have made sacrifices to the Celtic gods of death, with both animals and humans thrown into huge firepits as offerings. It is also believed that the ancient Druids ate their firstborn children on Samhain, or collected the blood of their sacrificial humans in cauldrons and drank it.

Samhain is considered the Witch’s New Year. It is said that today feasting and drinking of the harvest/all natural items top the celebration.  It is a night that is believed that the curtain between the afterlife and life is the thinnest, and spirits return.  Most Samhain celebrations come complete with tarot cards, palm reading, and communication with the dead and other forms of divination.

Leviticus 19:31, ‘Do not turn to mediums [who pretend to consult the dead] or to spiritists [who have spirits of divination]; do not seek them out to be defiled by them. I am the Lord your God.

Well, as the old adage goes no matter how you slice it, it is appearing to be a holiday for the dark side.  Today’s witches and warlocks, yes there are real people practicing, are often a part of Wiccan.  It is a group that teaches what they call “white” magic. They claim to only create spells that are good and will not harm someone. They do not believe in heaven, hell, or the like. I like you to note here, Isaiah 5: 20,  “Woe (judgment is coming) to those who call evil good, and good evil;
Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness;
Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!

2 Corinthians 6:15, What harmony can there be between Christ and Belial (Satan)? Or what does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? 

Now, I learned a long time ago, the just because someone does or does not believe the truth does not keep the truth from being fact.  It may not be a fact to you, but it still exists as truth.  You may not believe that on a sunny day the sky is blue because you have only been outside on dark, rainy days.  This still does not alter the fact that the beautiful, blue sky is outside waiting to be discovered.  Just because you were ignorant to it, did not change it from being real.  I believe that whether or not to participate in Halloween is the same way.  I have read a bunch of articles, several of them saying that it was a personal decision, and up to the parent. I agree in as much as the scripture says in Philippians 2:12,  “So then, my dear ones, just as you have always obeyed [my instructions with enthusiasm], not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence, continue to work out your salvation [that is, cultivate it, bring it to full effect, actively pursue spiritual maturity] with awe-inspired fear and trembling [using serious caution and critical self-evaluation to avoid anything that might offend God or discredit the name of Christ].” 

With this scripture in our minds let us touch on a few more symbols that were and are pertinent to Halloween.  Let me begin this section by telling a quick story.  I went into my local store looking for some pumpkins.  I have purchased them in years past and wanted them for some arrangements.  I asked the sales lady if she was going to get any in this year, and she assured me that she would have them out the next day.  I go in the next day to find not pumpkins but glittery jack-o-lanterns and skulls.  First and foremost, all jack-o-lanterns are pumpkins, BUT ALL PUMPKINS ARE NOT JACK-O-LANTERNS.

A bit of history here.  As I said before, it was believed that on that night the spirit world would eek over into the regular world.  Food was placed on the porches as offerings to the good spirits, turnips were carved with faces and a candle was placed inside.  This was a place for a spirit that had no place to go could fill the turnip and not harm people. In other words, it was a symbol of or for, if you will, a damned soul. Druid stories are more gruesome claiming that hollowed out pumpkins and turnips would be filled with fat from previous human sacrifices and lit. Today pumpkin jack-o-lanterns are primarily all we see.

Jack-O-Lantern.  Where did that name even come from?  It is from an old Irish folktale about a guy name Stingy Jack.  The short of the story is that Jack tricked the Devil and trapped him inside a tree with a cross on it.  Once he freed the Devil and he died, Hell did not want him because he tricked Satan, and Heaven did not want him because he was such a mean trickster.  The devil gave Jack a lump of burning coal so he could see to wander, and jack hollowed out a turnip and placed the coal inside to light his way.  He became known as Jack of the Lantern, and eventually Jack-O-Lantern.  So we can see that these hollowed-out pumpkins with faces symbolize in many ways a damned soul. My heart just breaks every time I see a small child holding this symbol.  Just seems so horrible for an innocent to cling to that horrible figure.

But test all things carefully [so you can recognize what is good]. Hold firmly to that which is good. Abstain from every form of evil [withdraw and keep away from it],  Thessalonians 5: 21-22.

Costumes originally were worn to protect one’s self from evil spirits.  The people believed that the costumes would confuse the spirit into thinking that the human was one of them and not haunt them. Personally, that is not giving much intelligence to the spirits, but I digress.

Costumes today vary in style and price.  From the very simple to the very elaborate.  The costumes are created for every age and every size.  You may be thinking that if your little man goes to a church party dressed as Captain America you are in a good place, but does it matter WHAT you dress up as, or the fact that you dress up on an evil day?  

Romans 12:2, And do not be conformed to this world [any longer with its superficial values and customs], but be transformed and progressively changed [as you mature spiritually] by the renewing of your mind [focusing on godly values and ethical attitudes], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His plan and purpose for you].

Black cats are a symbol we see this time of year. It was believed that cats had/have magical powers and could/can carry evil spirits.  I have also read of them being used in rituals and blood sacrifices in Satanist circles.  As a matter, of fact, in most major cities a black cat cannot be adopted on Oct. 31.  Even if it is not a written policy in some cases they will still adhere to this as an unspoken policy.  

Skeletons/skulls are seen a lot during the Halloween celebration.  After all, it IS the celebration of the DEAD.  What better way to show that skeletons and skulls?  Our culture uses skulls and skeletons all the time in graphics and decorations.  Why have we accepted a symbol of death so readily?  I wonder if the enemy of our souls just laughs at the way he sneaks in at every turn?

And do not give the devil an opportunity [to lead you into sin by holding a grudge, or nurturing anger, or harboring resentment, or cultivating bitterness], Ephesians 4:27.

Yes, it is hard when this holiday is so widely accepted to separate ourselves. However, it is not impossible.  I believe that when it comes to our souls and eternity it suddenly becomes an easier decision.   I remember the dilemma for how to handle the situation for my children in school.  I went to their teachers early on and explained that we did not celebrate Halloween and that I did not want my children participating in anything having to do with it or it’s symbols.  Most of the time there was no issue.  I simply explained that it was against our religion to participate.  Children are resilient, and I explained the reasons to them from early on.  Hate what is evil [detest all ungodliness, do not tolerate wickedness]; hold on tightly to what is good, Romans 12:9.

I understand that the kids love dressing up.  So have a dress-up birthday party or a block party with a costume theme.  We do not want to deprive the kids of fun, but we DO WANT TO DEPRIVE SATAN of any glory or worship. And we moms are aware of the candy aisle and even know what kind they like!  The kids will get their candy.

Do not participate in the worthless and unproductive deeds of darkness, but instead expose them [by exemplifying personal integrity, moral courage, and godly character], Ephesians 5:11.

James 4: 4, You adulteresses [disloyal sinners–flirting with the world and breaking your vow to God]! Do you not know that being the world’s friend [that is, loving the things of the world] is being God’s enemy? So whoever chooses to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

So I present before you these facts.  You are no longer ignorant of this information. The decision is up to you. Earnestly pray and seek God about your decision.  Comments are welcome.

God Bless!

The Giant that David Killed

 

Towering over nine feet tall, this Philistine champion was quite menacing.  The shear strength of this giant is explained by the massive amount of weight he carried with ease as armor on his body.  He wore a helmet of bronze that was about 150 pounds.  He also donned a coat of mail, overlapped to look like fish scales, that weighed 125 pounds.  He wore bronze leg protection and he harnessed a bronze javelin over his back.  The shaft of his spear was extraordinarily stout made and from hardwood and about 16 feet long, topped with an iron spearhead that weighed fifteen pounds. Altogether he carried way over 500 pounds on his body for protection.

His boisterous voice abounded mockingly across the valley to the Israelites.  “Do you need a whole army to fight for you?  Send me one man.  If he wins we will surrender and be your slaves, but if I win the Israelites will surrender and be our slaves.  I defy the armies of Israel! Send me a man!”

The Israelite army and King Saul was terrified. They could see the size and strength of this giant.  They knew that they could not beat him. They were completely dismayed and grievously afraid.  They did not want to become slaves of the Philistines.  So quietly they sat. Barely moving. Wondering what to do.

 

Now, David’s older brothers were serving in King Saul’s army.  Dad wanted to send a care package to them via little brother.  David woke up early in the morning and headed out.  Just as he reached the edge of the camp, he could hear Goliath shouting out against God’s people.  He began to ask questions of the men in Saul’s army.  “What are you going to do about this fool?”  Most of them responded by going to hide.  “This guy is defying the army of the living God!”  David said as he began to get a bit more zealous, “We can not allow this uncircumcised heathen continue to declare war on God’s people!”

David marched into King Saul and announced that he himself would take on the champion.  Saul was a bit unsure, but happy to have someone finally to accept the herculean’s challenge.  He offered David his own armor which was too cumbersome and heavy for the shepherd boy to use. On the way to meet the giant David picked up 5 smooth stones and placed them in his pocket. So, David went out to face the giant armed with what he had used before. A slingshot and a shepherd’s staff.

David arrived in the monstrous shadow and stopped.  Goliath looked down on the tiny little figure before him that was holding a staff.

“Am I a dog that you come at me with a stick?” Goliath questioned emphatically.  He cursed David by his gods.  The Philistine said, “Come here and I will feed you to the birds and the wild animals.”

Then David spoke, “You come against me with a spear and a sword, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty! Today the Lord will conquer you and I will kill you and cut off your head.  Then I will give the dead bodies of your army to the birds and the wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel!  God does not need a weapon to rescue His people! It is His battle, not ours.  The Lord will give you to us!”

The mammoth figure moved forward to attack and David hurridly ran to meet him.  David reached in his shepherd’s bag and retrieved a smooth stone which he hurled from his slingshot and hit Goliath in the forehead. The stone sank in, Goliath stumbled and he fell face first to the ground.  David took Goliath’s sword and cut off the giant’s head.

It was known all over the land and all over the world that God took care of His Chosen People that day.

Now let us look at this situation more carefully. How does this story apply to today? Think about who David was.  A young shepherd boy who loved and served God.  He knew who he was in God.  Do you know who you are in God?

David put all of his faith in God.  Do you have all your faith in God?  What’s that?  You don’t have any faith?  Romans 12:3, “For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but think of yourself with sober judgment, according to the measure of faith God has given you.”  You have been given the measure of faith when you became a child of God. Now the scripture doesn’t say how large or small the measuring cup is, but it a measure.  We all receive a measure.  It is important to note that Faith is no good if it is not used.  Like a muscle that never gets used, it gets weak. It will wither away to nothing if it remains not used. However, if it is used regularly it will get stronger and stronger.

Thinking back to the measure of faith. Knowing that we all have the measure of faith.  Let’s read the words of Jesus in Matthew 17:20, “Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” Faith as small as a mustard seed.  A teeny tiny mustard seed sized faith can move a mountain. WOAH!

Do not miss this. Think about that measure of faith, and about that mustard seed faith.

Notice in the picture below: The wood spoon is the measure of faith. We are going to say that the mustard seed IS the faith.  Now Jesus said faith the size of a mustard seed could move a mountain. How many does it take to move a giant?

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   A measure of mustard seeds.

David, when he prepared to go, face Goliath stopped and gathered five smooth stones.  He used one to take down the giant.  4 more remained in his pocket.  Have you ever heard the phrase, you mess with one, you mess with them all? Hopefully, that’s not just a southern saying, but basically, it means that family looks out for each other.  Well, Goliath had four other gigantic family members at home.  This was common knowledge, so David was ready with a stone for each and every one of them.

So was it really the stone that took out the Giant that day?  The answer is no.  That little rock flung from the sling of that small young man did not.  Faith took out Goliath.  David put ALL his faith in God, did his part and God took care of the rest.

Faith can move a mountain and Faith can conquer a defiant giant.  Since this has been proven over and over not only in my own life but in the lives of others, why do I still have so many enormous obstacles taunting me?  I have the measure of faith.  You have the measure of faith.  It only takes a little bit to do great things, then we need to start cutting off some heads and leveling some mountains. Build up your faith. Don’t know how? Romans 10:17,” So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”  Read God’s word.  Share God’s Word. Live God’s Word.

Once you start using your faith you will feel it grow.  You will be able to speak as freely as David did about what God is going to do because you will be more intuned to hie will.  But it all begins with that tiny bit of faith put to good use.  Before long they will be talking about the giants that YOU and faith killed.

 

 

How to Create a Good Understanding Between You and Your Furniture (DIY XL Coasters)

Nothing is better than a tall glass of your favorite beverage on a hot day!   We southerners love sweet tea over ice!  Now almost every container you drink from has a tendency to form condensation and that can make a mess on the table or desk.  Grab a coaster?  Is that what you were thinking?  That does not exactly work well in my house.  People move them and if they should get knocked off onto the floor, the dog thinks it is his toy and will chew them up to nothing.

I have recently created myself a work area including the addition of a small desk.  Now creativity makes me thirsty.  There is always something with me.  Hence my dilemma.  I do not want to wreck my desk area, but I do want a chew marked coaster sitting on my lovely desk.  So I started digging and here’s what I found to work with…

 

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Felt, Adhesive Fur, Trim, ribbon, and a stamp

 

I decided what size to make my coaster.  I used a lid from a 44oz fountain drink, 4.5 inches.  I also located a cardboard.  Something with a bit of plastic on one side is a little tougher, but even an old cereal box will do.  It will not show so color does not matter.

Cut 2 rounds of felt by your pattern.  Then cut 2 rounds of cardboard slightly smaller than the felt.

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2 cardboard rounds cut slightly smaller than the original pattern.

You will notice right away that my cardboard is NOT straight, because I decided to freehand it so it would just be slightly smaller than the outside.

Nevertheless, I used it because you will not see it anyways. Besides, it is mine and until now I was the only one who knew.  (Gulp)

Well anyway, let us move on to the good part…assembly and decoration.

 

 

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Bird stamp and ink pad

Now since my website is while I empty the nest and nest can make you think of birds, I am using a bird.

I pulled out my ink pad and inked up my bird stamp really well.  Then on the adhesive backing of the fur, I made my stamp.

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Dove stamped in black

I made the executive decision to leave off the olive branch.  Using my Fabric Scissors I slowly and carefully cut out my bird. Once it was cut out I used the scissors and worked with the front a bit.  It is fur, and I needed it to look more feather like.

 

With all that cutting out of the way, we are ready to assemble.

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2 seafoam circles 2 smaller while cardboard circles 1 baby-blue bird

 

Using hot glue- glue the 2 cardboard rounds together.  It is very important that you keep glue smooth.  I placed most of my glue around the outside of the circle.  You do not want a glass tilting over.  

Sandwich the cardboard between the 2 felt rounds.  Be sure you place the cardboard in the center.  Now you may decorate to your heart’s desire.  This is what makes the coaster look finished and customized.

Here is what I did to mine.  I started with some kinda retro looking ribbon. I glued it in a cross pattern and then added ribbon give it a polished look.

 

 

 

 

It’s a hashtag!!!  #CoastersRock #Createyourowncoater #HOWCOOLISTHIS

Oh, sorry, got a bit carried away.  I placed my bird at the center of the hashtag.  ON TO THE TRIM…

Hot glue is your best friend here.  But work slowly here.  You do not want big gobs of glue or strings hanging on at the end.  You want it as nice and neat as you can.

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My finished coaster for my desk: I Love it!

I think it makes a beautiful addition to my desk and everyone knows who it belongs to and dares not take it.  It looked so nice mt Dad wanted one.  You can see his design in the picture at the very top and the very bottom.  Simple but just right.

So to recap here are the things you actually need.

  • Decide what size you desire and cut pattern
  • 1 piece of felt
  • Cardboard for 2 patterns
  • Trim of your liking
  • Hot glue

Remember not to decorate where the glass or cup will sit with anything bulky.  That would be disastrous.

 

I will be making more I am sure of it.  I would love to see yours once you are complete.  Feel free to comment here and also find us on Pinterest!

 

Cheers to you all with my glass of sweet tea and my desk and I now have a great understanding of one another.

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Pretty coasters

 

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Frozen Lemon-Lime Pie

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The summer of 2018 has been a brutal one here on the Florida gulf coast. Heat index can and regularly is even worse actual temperature. On a particular afternoon, I decided to create a cool dessert for everyone.  Of course, you never have exactly what you want when you want it, but here is what I came up with.  They all enjoyed it right away and the next day as well. So, here we go Frozen Lemon-lime Pie.

INGREDIENTS:

1-pkg lemon gelatin, 1-pkg lime gelatin, 2 small containers of whipped topping, 1 premade Graham cracker crust, Sprinkles as desired for garnish.

HOW TO MAKE:

Let whipped toppings sit out on the counter for about 30 minutes to soften.

Mix lemon gelatin with one container of whipped topping.  Mix the lime gelatin with the other container of whipped topping.  Now, in your crust place your lemon mixture into the bottom right on top of the graham cracker.  Smooth gently and place into the freezer for 5 minutes.

Pull out the crust from the freezer and top the lemon with the lime mixture. Make it as pretty as you wish on top with your spreader.  Top the entire thing with sprinkles or as you wish.  Fresh fruit would be beautiful!  I just did not have any that day.

Freeze entire pie for a minimum of 30 minutes before serving.

 

ENJOY!!

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Coolin'

 

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10 Useful Household Products to Make Life Easier

Which is worse? The Craziness of the morning getting kids ready for school, or the afternoons of homework and after-school activities as well as little league games. Oh, and everyone’s favorite part of the day, dinner. Oh, no, did I forget to plan dinner? Okay, I will pick something up on the way home. Only on the way home, half the city decided to do the same thing and traffic is ridiculous! Your annoyance grows as you are standing in line that because of this you are behind on picking up people at the correct time. All you can do is pray that this day will be over soon because tomorrow you get to try again.

Every household needs to function like a well-oiled machine. Matter of fact, the more children and extracurricular activities + the more parents with jobs and social engagements = better functioning machine becomes crucial. Day to day events require us to tick them off the to-do list at lightning speed and without hesitation conquer the following one as well. Anything that happens to cause the wheels to slow down or even stop can cause frustration. There has to be something that can help a parent/guardian keep things rolling smoothly.

Well, Ta-DA. There are useful home products that this writer would venture to say that they are must-haves for every home. Let me first say that I am not trying to sell you these particular products. I am merely placing ideas before you for your consideration. You purchase, test and use at your own discretion which products and brands are right for you.

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Storage Bags No Copyright Infringement Intended, Display purpose only

STORAGE/FREEZER BAGS

Life in our home would come to a screeching halt without storage bags. We use them for all kinds of things. I will make a list of things we use storage bags (all sizes) for in our house.

  1. Craft supplies
  2. Buttons
  3. Index Cards
  4. Cupcake baking cups
  5. Cake picks
  6. Legos
  7. Pens
  8. Medicine on the go
  9. Storage Blankets

There are probably a dozen more I could find if I just looked, but you get the idea. They are cheap enough to toss out if it gets too dirty, plus all the kids can have identical bags on trips. Do not forget freezer bags. They are great for breaking down those large packages of meat into smaller, into easier to handle bundles. Your garden Veggies keep much better that way too, and you can eat them after the season is over.

ALUMINUM FOIL

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Roll of aluminum foil…no copyright infringement intended. For Display purpose only.

This is an item that will aid cook and dishwasher by becoming a convenient way to cook and clean. Foil can be used to line baking pans or the grill, and also to make a pouch of food for quick and easy cleanup. It works wonders to cover the drip pans beneath the stove burners, to keep things looking pristine, and simple tidying up for sticky messes. Sometimes casseroles or meats must be tinted with foil for part of the cooking time to keep it from overcooking. The foil is very versatile and can be used in many different ways. Craft projects too. I try my best to always keep our kitchen stocked with Aluminum Foil.

CROCK-POT LINERS

crock pot liners
silver crock-pot with black crockery, covered in a clear liner no copyright infringement intended. For display purposes only

Now, these little darlings are some of the greatest inventions that man ever made! Second only to the reason it was needed: the Crock-Pot/Slow Cooker. To use these precious gems, simply place them on the pot like a backward shower cap. Now it is ready to hold all your food and liquids. Cook as usual. The best part is that once the food and liquids are removed unless you have spilled down the side of the pot when you throw the liner away your slow cooker is ready for next time! And your next chicken dish! To understand that click here.

SMALL TRASH CANS FOR EVERY WORK AREA

small garbage cans
Small garbage can NO COPYRIGHT infringement intended. For Display purposes only.

I know that this may sound like a bit overboard, but trust me when I say it will help with frustration. Small trash cans are pretty inexpensive, and as I always say but my nerves are not. I have a can at all work areas, all desks, all sitting areas. The laundry room, and every bedroom and even my dining room. Now, these cans can be decorated to match the decor of the room or space. Or you can keep it simple and stick to one color. The idea is to not to have to run searching for a trash receptacle. Everyone is responsible for dumping their own trash can or assign all or some of them as a weekly chore. No matter the small details these small additions to your home will keep things running more smoothly.

A RECYCLE BIN/AREA

Green Can with white recycle logo on side
Green recycle can with white logo NO COPYRIGHT infringement intended. Photo used for display only.

Recycling is a wonderful way to help the planet as we all know. But do not be fooled, it is a great way to help yourself as well. Once we had our recycling area, the amount of trash we had to deal with reduced significantly. I created some nice, neat containers for inside that everyone uses constantly. They were large grey totes, with green lids, and I created a sticker for the side that said recycle. It took a little while to get everyone into the habit of what to recycle, but now it is just an everyday maintenance.

COLORED GARBAGE BAGS

colored garbage bags
Colored garbage bags No copyright infringement intended. Display purposes only.

Have you ever asked a question like who put this garbage in the big can and were met with complete and utter silence? I mean we are taking tumbleweeds here. Well, we have color-coded our garbage bags so we always know what type of garbage and where it came from. Let me see if I can break it down for you.

WHITE bags, kitchen 13-gallon size, used for kitchen garbage including food trash.

GREEN bags, Large, lawn, and leaf, used for recycling–never used for food.

BLACK bags, Large, lawn, and leaf, used for regular trash–never used for food.

Small Colored Bags-These fit small trash cans-purchased on a roll. Can be designated for a particular room or person. You can recycle plastic store bags for this purpose as well.

PERSONAL BATHROOM KITS

Blue toiletry kit
Personal Bathroom Kit No Copyright Infringement Intended. For Example only.

Hate a messy bathroom? So do I! Bottles cluttering the sides of the shower, razors, and sponges ready to slide off the side. Well, I have an answer for that. Personal Shower Kits. These can be made from zippered pouches like a man’s shaving kit, or a small over nite bag if you need something just a bit bigger. Just make the kit personal to each family member. Then when bathtime arrives everything you need is ready and waiting. once you are clean just toss it back in and take it back to your room. The bathroom stays tidy, and mom keeps her sanity.

Whiteboards

 

 

How in the world did we ever manage life before them? Oh, I know, it is just so much easier and much less mess.

We use them for:

  1. Calendars-month
  2. Calendar-weekly
  3. Chore Chart
  4. Mommy don’t forget

A LARGE BEVERAGE SERVER

clear and teal beverage server with silver spout, latch and handle full of ice and water
Large Beverage Server NO COPYRIGHT infringement intended. For display purposes only.

I am not really sure about other places in the world but here in the south, we love sweet tea. I am partial to mine with some lemon also, but that has nothing to do with this, so I digress. It is really easy to go through a gallon of sweet tea a day here at my house. who has time to stop and make the tea that much? I propose a large beverage server. Now, this bad boy will hold up to 5 gallons of tea at the time. This keeps that precious nectar flowing without mom having to stop every single day and make more drink. After all, it could be lemonade, kool-aid, juice with water, doesn’t matter. Kids can serve themselves and Mom can spend that time on something else, because you know there is always something else.

CLOTHES HANGERS

hanger silver
Silver Metal Hangers NO COPYRIGHT infringement intended. display only

Now you are probably saying about now, duh. Everyone knows we need hangers.

But do not be fooled. All hangers are not created equal. According to HomeStratosophere.com, there are 29 different types of coat hangers. The basic design is about the same as the original one created in the 1800s. Do some research and find a style that you like and whatever you do, do not take a single plastic, “crap” store hanger when you buy clothing. These are cheaply made in bulk and will not hold up well at home. I mean if they break at the store they have a gazillion more and they just replace it, me not so much.

I personally also think that the wire hangers from the dry cleaners are best saved for arts and crafts. These fall into the category of bulk made, and low quality.

Save yourself some trouble. Color code if you want. No matter, but get something sturdy that will not leave your delicates on the floor and your blouses only partially hung. Everyone will have a favorite and a style that they loathe, but good hangers, my friend, are a bare necessity of life. (Disney Reference there. Did You Catch It?)

Now you need a good recipe for dinner.  Try this one on for size: Porcupine Meatballs

Succulent Themed Pom Pom Rug

   My daughter, Elyssa is a junior at the Baptist College of Florida and has moved from a large dorm around 30 girls to a small house with 8-10 young ladies.  It is a much smaller and with a few touches, it would be a homie space.  The young lady in charge of the house decided that she wanted to decorate with succulents.  Elyssa was joined in on the fun.  She came home for the summer with ideas and questions about what could be made.  Enter Mom.  We made several things together including a wreath for the front door. Follow the link here to see that also. succulent wreath

“Can we make a pom, pom rug, Mom?”  She questioned with excited anticipation.  I agreed, yet I must confess, I did not really know what I was getting myself into.  However, as you can see in the picture above it turned out awesome!  So let me try and show you how we did it…

 

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Rug Underlay

1.  We purchased 2 nonslip rug underlays.  (These actually came from Dollar Tree.)  You can cut it down smaller if you wish.

2.  Yarn and lots of it.  Choose the colors and thicknesses you like.  Whatever you choose, it will need to be something that can be made into a secure pom-pom.  Approx. 10 small skeins.

3.  Create pom poms with long tie strings left on them.  We made poms of 3 different sizes to simulate different sized plants.  You can make them all the same size and color if you so desire.  Our rug has over 100 pom poms.

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Colored Pom Poms

 

Here is the picture to the right, you can see the different colors of yarn and combinations that we used.  Some dark and some light.  Some multicolored.

 

 

 

 

TO ASSEMBLE THE RUG:  Fold the underlay so that you can find the center so you will know where to begin.  I marked ours with a black marker.

 

 

 

 

 

Take your first pom and thread the ends through so the pom is on one side and the knots and strings are on the other.   See the picture directions below:

 

 

 

 

 

Repeat, Repeat, Repeat X?  This will be decided by the size of the rug and how full you want it to be.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once it is completely covered.  Go over the top of the rug with your hand and feel for gaps.  These must be filled before moving on.  Take the second underlay and place it evenly on the bottom.  Line it up carefully.  With a tapestry needle use more yarn to bind the edges.  If you run out of yarn.  Tie more on and keep going.  Tie off the last piece and carefully secure.  Turn your rug over.  You are ready!

 

 

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Completed rug on a dark green carpet.

I hope you be brave and make one!  It is challenging fun!

 

 

Bats in the Belfry Disturbing the Cobwebs of my Mind

    My boss had me on a tight deadline, and I was behind schedule.  My insides were full of those proverbial butterflies, and they had begun to annoy the devil out of me.  I was short additional help.  Part of my equipment was down.  For some reason, everything I touched that day seemed to turn to sand in my fingers.  I felt defeated and lost.

I knew that in a mere couple of hours the phone would ring and I would be forced to listen to the voice of my supervisor.  He usually reminded me of all the things that I was not doing to his satisfaction.  If you sell well this week.  Then you better sell more next week.  Should you receive recognition from the home office for a particular win, he would quiz you about why you didn’t receive two.  However, this particular day seemed more stressful than ever.

Customers would enter the establishment, and I would feel relief.  They were the reason I stayed.  They brought me joy and happiness.  I enjoyed meeting people and doing my best to supply them with what they were in need of that particular visit.

The bell on the front door sounded the leaving of another satisfied guest and I returned to my task.  I grabbed the stickers and went up the ladder.  Being short was never any help in retail. I tagged a few more products and realized I was in need of more tags.

I tried to hurry so I could get this ordeal complete quickly and that is when my life changed forever.  A searing pain like being stuck with a hot iron jabbed me in the center of my back.  I thought I would collapse.  I tried to continue working, but this monster that had a hold of me was not kidding.  A began to sweat.  It hurt to breathe.

I never returned to work.  They could not fix the problem.  They tried many times but nothing seemed to accomplish killing the pain.

I went through the loopholes for workman’s compensation, and suddenly I was declared MMI.  Maximum Medical Improvement.  I was not well, but they didn’t know what else to do.

So, I find myself not old, but moving like an old woman.  I suffer from back pain, Sciatic pain, nerve pain in my arms and legs.  Migraine headaches, depression and anxiety with panic attacks.  NO WONDER I FEEL BAT CRAP CRAZY!

Crazy people are defined as mentally deranged, especially as manifested in a wild or aggressive way.  Now, let’s be honest there are all kinds of crazy pictures running through your mind right now.

 

I can not sit or stand for long periods of time.  I become tired easily.  And anxiety can rear it’s disgusting head any time.  I can become nervous because someone looked at me or because the Mart store moved something.  It is enough to make a person feel completely out of control.

 

I am not telling you this for a pity party or for you to feel sorry for me, I do, however, want you to know that I am doing my very best to create something here that is unique.  Something that is worth sharing.  I believe that there are a ton of people out there that find themselves in a similar place to mine.  Like, Man, even the government says,” No you are not bad off enough for benefits.”

I want regular people to know that someone understands that it is tough out there.  I want you to be able to glean something from my experiences.  I want to be able to teach you a trick I have learned, or a craft that I have created.

I want you to be able to smile and laugh.  Even if you start the sentence out by saying,” I think this lady is a bit crazy, but guess what she wrote!”  Get my drift?  More on my situation: Follow this link: Future?

I am not an expert on anything.  Unless you use the definition of an expert as a drip under pressure.  Okay not the best joke in town, but I still think it’s funny.  My point is I don’t know everything, but what I do know, I try and do my best at.  This is all I can figure to do now, in my physical and mental condition.  I set my own hours, and see the doctors and rest as needed.  I wish there was more I could do.

I pray to the precious Lord above that you will enjoy reading the musings of an unbalanced middle-aged woman.  I pray that you will subscribe to the email list, and receive freebies and exclusive offers that other folks just won’t get.  I also pray that you will be praying for me and my blog to succeed.  I pray that you will share it will your friends, family and even people you don’t know.  I pray for God’s blessings on you and your situation too.

So, here I sit practically in the dark.  My computer is in my lap and my feet are propped up and my back is leaning against pillows.  My little dog, Bryant, is right beside me on the loveseat.  I am becoming exhausted from finishing this up.  Do not remember how many times I had t take a break.  Yep, I must be a crazy person.

My best wishes to you and yours!   It’s time for my nap while the bats are quiet.

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CHEAP vs. THRIFTY

Wow, there’s a title that will stop a crowd!  Are you a Thrifty or Cheap?  Have you ever considered that one of those titles could describe you?

Sometimes we honestly have to reevaluate things to be sure we are getting what we really want.  Google defines thrifty as an action by a person using money and other resources carefully and not wastefully. Sounds really practical.  Most people this day and age work paycheck to paycheck and need as much thrift in their lives as possible.  Afterall, the prices of everything has risen except for our bottom line.

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Dollars

Now cheap is defined by Google as an item low in price that is worth more than the cost.  However, there are some items that are considered cheap that really end up being a waste of money.  If you purchase something and it does not work once the package is open, or falls completely apart once you have freed it from its plastic tomb that could definitely be defined as junk.

Cheap carries with it such negative connotations.  Why would anyone want to spend more on something just for the ability to say that they did so?  I suppose there are a few of those folks around.   But if you can get a deal then why not?  That is why sales and coupons are sought after treasures.  We really like saying things like,” Look at this pile of canned goods that will take my family through the Apocalypse and I got it all for ten bucks.”  Crazy as it sounds we will go bats over a sale, but let someone say that we are cheap or thrifty and we take issue.

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Elyssa (background) Michelle (Foreground)

I asked a close friend of mine to snap some photos of me and my daughter while we were out looking at a Thrift store.  She was slightly taken aback. “Do you want people to know you shop at Thrift Stores?” she asked.  I assured her that I did not care about that.  I honestly think people would like to learn that I am not one that lives, as they say, high on the hog.

Second-Hand or Thrift Stores are in my opinion a no-brainer for the Cheap-n-Thrifty Crowd.  Another place that has been created out of people’s need for the less expensive is the dollar store.   Dollar Tree and Dollar General are my favorite.  We joke in our family that there must be a trip made to Dollar Tree every other day.  It’s not every other-sometimes it is every day.

There are still a few people who refuse to shop in these places and my response is, “Suit yourself.  That leaves more for me!” And I can tell by the number of shoppers I run into when I am there, that I am not alone.   I have found items in both of these stores that I have not been able to find anywhere else.  That is a champion thrift move because I not only get the best deal, but the quality is still decent.

Now, there are everyday items that are used in the kitchen at these stores, and my advice is to take time to do a little math.  Decide what is the best buy.  It is not a huge deal, and remember since you have your cell phone, there is a calculator at your fingertips, so you have no real excuse.

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Cell phone 

I have, as you already know, been around for a day or two so here is my personal advice on some items that can be purchased from dollar stores.    Storage bags are a good purchase.  I am not too keen on the freezer bags, but storage is good.   Fun size candy bar packages.  Vinyl placemats, hairbrushes, and deodorant are also a fair deal.

There are many other things that I could name that are good, but then let us not forget the bad.  Canned goods that are normally 89 cents and below are not a good deal at the regular price of $1.  Usually, dairy products are not for the short of money.  Laundry detergents can go either way.  Remember, you can also use manufacturer coupons at the dollar stores which can aid the Thrifter’s totals.

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Groceries and Receipt

So during the writing of this, I have done a lot of thinking.  Am I Cheap or am I Thrifty?  I seem to go back and forth here.

I guess it depends on the moment, and what I am shopping for.

So, I am no longer cheap.  I am no longer thrifty.

I shall now and forever more call myself:  A penny-pinching bargain shopper.

Aka: PPBS

No matter where you shop, use your money wisely.  If someone wants to call you cheap.  So be it.  These days you gotta do what you gotta do.  So grab your sales papers, clip those coupons,  & even visit the dollar stores.  Let’s be PPBS’s together!