Friday, December 31, 2010


Sitting here at 8:20pm on Dec. 31st it's hard not to reflect on the past year. Since today was a rough day, it's a bit more of a challenge to think of all the good things that happened. I know they did so I'm going to search my brain to think of them. Maybe it will help lift my spirits before bedtime.

Things I'm thankful for/accomplishments/good things that happened in 2010...

- I was able to go back to my job at the Pepsi Center in January. I'm very grateful to have such a flexible job...and to have a job at all.

- Jim is employed. Not that there was any cause to worry but, in the times we are in right now, it's nice that he has a good job and we are financially doing fine.

- We have all (basically) maintained good health. Sure there have been colds, a flu or two, a concussion (not Jim or I, so you take a guess), and some other small illnesses but it's all par for the course and we are VERY blessed to be healthy.

- We have had family come visit us and we have been able to take trips to visit family. I cannot stress enough how important my family is to me, including in-laws of course. I really hope that next year we will have more opportunities to take more trips and to have more houseguests.

- I lost my pregnancy weight plus a few more. I'm still working towards that rock hard body (ya, right) but was so happy when the scale kept inching down and I'm now below my pre-pregnancy weight. Going shopping to buy new jeans, because my others were all too big, made me very proud of myself.

- I have maintained important friendships and some newer ones have grown. I'm not always the best friend in the world, I will admit, but I love my friends and I hope to continue to be a good friend to those who care about me.

- I started my own Avon business. I really enjoy the opportunities that have been given to me by being an Avon rep. I've had a lot of fun with the "job" and I hope that next year it will continue to prosper. Not just financially, but for me to be able to give a little extra beauty to those around me.

To continue the happiness trend, here are some things I'm looking forward to for next year.

- Taking more vacations! I hope Jim and I can take another trip, just the two of us, to continue to build our marriage and enjoy being husband and wife (something that has certainly gotten a little lost in the midst of having an infant and a toddler). I'm also really looking forward to a girl's trip, already booked, in February with my dear friend Robin. Florida here we come!!

- Maintaining my health. Although I probably don't need to lose too many more pounds, I'd definatly like to firm up the softness that having 2 kids has left me with.

- Becoming a better mother to my children. I know that I was no where NEAR becoming mother of the year for 2010. I doubt I will for 2011 either, but I know for sure that I'm looking forward to enjoying time with my children. I'm going to MAKE time to be with them in the midst of all my other goals.

- Becoming a better wife to my husband. I won't go into details but, as mentioned above, things have gone a little astray and I know that I always have room to improve. I look forward to bettering myself in all capacities and I hope my husband reaps the benefits of that.

- Finding peace. I know that sounds really out there but in my goal to become a better person, I'm looking forward to finding a sense of peace within myself. I have the Serenity Prayer hanging in our guest bathroom but sometimes I feel like it should be tattooed on my arm.

"God, grant me the serenity

To accept the things I cannot change;

Courage to change the things I can;

And wisdom to know the difference."
When searching online for the exact words to the Serenity Prayer (because in my boggled mind this evening I didn't want to misquote it), I found this Mother Goose rhyme:
"For every ailment under the sun

There is a remedy, or there is none;

If there be one, try to find it;

If there be none, never mind it."

All in all, I look forward to the possibilities. I know that we can all make too big of a deal about resolutions and January 1st, but I think it really is a good time to reflect on what's important, where you've been and where you are hoping to go. I'm planning to start this new year with a clean slate. That includes a shower, clean pajamas and clean bedsheets....that's my new New Years Eve tradition. :)

Friday, December 17, 2010

You have to have the right tools

I am so excited! I just purchased professional makeup brushes!

A while back I made a mention that I'm hoping to get into doing makeup for people. I'm hoping it will just be a part of expanding my Avon business and helping to beautify the masses (or at least a few lucky ladies). A couple days ago I saw this post from Kandee Johnson (my FAVORITE makeup artist...she is AMAZING!) and tonight I took the plunge.

I bought this set of 15 brushes for only $29.99!! That's aMAzing! That's $2 a brush!! Whether you are wanting to do pro makeup or not, that's a really good deal! (and a lot of exclamation points!)

I know Avon has makeup brushes, and I currently use a few of them, but they don't have the extensive line like this. I can't wait to get them. It's just one step closer to helping to have all the tools I need. teehee...I'm a little giddy. :)

Friday, December 10, 2010

Would you be there?

if I hosted a Money Saving get-together?

I'm certainly no expert but I recieve questions off an on and I thought maybe it would be fun for people to get together and talk about money saving strategies. We can talk about online shopping, coupons (and all things surrounding that) and just various ways we all save money throughout the year. I can print out information about websites I use and have a checklist of points I want to make sure and cover but it will be very open for everyone to chime in with their thoughts and ideas.

I thought maybe January would be a good time. It's the beginning of the year and everyone has resolutions on their mind. We all try and start out the year with intentions of making that new year the best ever. Why not start the new year right and try to save as much money as you can?

I'm more than happy to host at my home but if there is someone in town that would be willing to host I'm great with that too! Let me know if there is interest and we can start talking dates.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

A fun little Christmas craft

I saw this craft in a Martha Stewart magazine from 2005 and decided to give it a go. I has a few steps but all in all was really easy. The best part, I didn't spend a dime to do it! All the items used for the craft were things I had around the house. :)

A couple years ago I bought this container of cookie cutters. I think I have yet to use ANY of them, but I knew it was unlikely that I'd use the 20 "mini" cutters included in the set. I mean, really, who uses mini cookie cutters? So I grabbed out the 20 mini cutters and off I went.

I initially used paper from the magazine because there was an ad with really great prints and then also used some scrapbooking paper for the rest. The original magazine article showed using family portraits, which were really cute.

 I took the cookie cutters, placed them on top of the designs, traced around the outside and cut them out.

I then took craft glue and, with a paintbrush, glued the cutting side of the cookie cutter to the paper. Make sure to let the glue fully dry.

Next step is to take a needle with a large enough eye for your chosen ribbon to fit through. Poke a hole in the top of the paper (or right where the paper and cutter meet) and thread your ribbon through.
 Thread a bead through both ends of your ribbon and tie it at the top. Viola!

For some reason I can't get the rest of my pictures to load up, to show you all the "ornaments" but hopefully you get the idea. These are so cute and really fun. I can see these on a small table top tree in a kitchen, or even your main Christmas tree. I also thought these would be really cute to use as the gift tag on a present or as a placecard at your dinner table...just write the person's name on the paper. So many cute ideas for this little craft. Let me know if you try it. I'd love to see your finished product.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Free this week and a little about stockpiling

Have I mentioned how much I LOVE King Soopers and their Mega Events?

Free this week... (some mega event, some not)
Krusteaz cookie mixes, Yakisoba noodle meals, Naturals cereals, Temptation cat treats, Suave deoderant (still on sale for .88), Banquet fruit pies and in the mark down bin at my store I SCORED Sweet Moments brownies for free. I had more coupons so I could have picked up more but I decided not to be a pig.

18 items, all free for me this week! I also picked up some Bestlife buttery spread for .17 each (5 of them) and a couple more cans of evaporated milk for .29 each. Yay!
What do I do with all of this stuff? Well, some of it I do donate to my parent's church, the rest is going in my stockpile. No I'm not stocking up for WWIII, I'm stocking up so I don't have to buy things at regular price. I HATE when I run out of something I need and I don't have a coupon and there isn't a good sale. Especially when it had just BEEN on sale.
I have a nice panty in my kitchen but this is my new second pantry...

I LOVE it! It's a white cubbard (with doors) that's in our garage. Jim bought in with the intentions of putting shoes in it but we realized that that wasn't such a good plan (dirty, wet shoes on wood shelves...not so good). Since my canned goods were spilling out into the garage anyway, we decided to make this a second storage area. I'm so happy! Now I can get those extra items I want, when they are SUPER cheap or free and put them away. I want/need to get some more shelves in it (like the one wire rack you see) but this is what it is for now.
Everything is organized by expiration date. It's written on the front of the item and the items expiring first are in the front. My hope is that through couponing and stockpiling, I can lower my grocery bill drastically. A lot of die hard couponers do this. They (we) get multiple coupon inserts so we have multiple coupons so we can buy multiple items. Then you have a stockpile and the hope is that you won't have to buy that item again until it's back at a super low price (or free).

When I was checking out today the cashier made a comment about how I must have spent a lot of time cutting out coupons. I said "ya, some, but it's worth it". When she saw my savings (today I spent $88 and saved $95), she sort of changed her tune a little saying, "Wow, you saved more than you spent!".

Yep, that's how we do it here in coupon lady land. Come visit me here sometime. It's fun!