Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Nerds like me...

I was very excited to see the GM Transformers commercials tonight! And I just knew there was a big old nerd like me that already had it taped for youtube!


Tuesday, June 26, 2007

5 Things I learned today

1. My blockbuster is open until 11:00 pm during the week and midnight on the weekends. I discovered this at 10:10 PM tonight when my movies were due!

2. I am a closet hippie. Tonight as I left Blockbuster and Walmart, I'm not a bit excited about all the new stuff they are building around town. They stuck the new Lowes in an area where deer graze. What a shame.

3. That I really really dislike Walmart.

4. That my little town isn't little anymore. At the corner of Stone Drive and where you turn to go to the hospital, we have red light cameras. When they go off its quite the show!

5. That castle bunt cakes don't look like castles once you drown them in frosting and candy bars. Happy Birthday Sharon!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Yard Sale Day!

Can you believe I made $320 on the yard sale today? And the crazy thing is, the truck was full going down and full coming back. Michelle said we just didn't pack it as tight on the way home. So that means I have a big truckload of already priced stuff ready for my sale next Sat (I hope it doesn't rain!).

I parted with some stuff that I had sentimental attachment to today. It's funny how you hang on to something for so long thinking that it means something. I didn't want to sell it, told myself I should and I was totally ok when it went out the door. It's just stuff, things I've had in storage for 6 years. Time to let go!

After I pay my share of the community center, the ad and lunch, I expect to have $295 :) I am not sure what I am going to do with it yet. I am up to $811 in yard sale money and still have a lot to sell. I'm such a packrat!

Pictures from the weekend...
On the way- quilt patterned barn
One of the many small horse farms.

Do you see the horse in the left part of the pic? It's hard to see because I took this through my windshield. That crazy horse has a huge field to play in yet it hangs at the edge of the woods and watches cars. It's there everytime I drive by!

Michelle's neighbor's lamas. They also have a buffalo herd, a kangaroo, an ostritch, alpaca, horses, swans, geese, ducks, praire dogs and I think I spotted a normal old cow there once.

Two of the horses:
Why you don't speed on the backroads:

My future home sweet home. It is part of a 500 acre tract and I am going to inquire if I can buy this section only. It is a small part on the opposite side side of the road than the rest of the tract. If I had to guess it's between 3-5 acres. I'll build a small cottage house a little bit bigger than the one I already have.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Day 28

of being good. This is what I've done REALLY well

  • Cut back on diet coke
  • Think about what I order when I eat out. I'm not a picky eater, I don't just look at the prices, I think about them.
  • I have cooked a LOT more. And it's been better quality that what you can get at a fast food place.
  • I've not bought any clothes or trinkets for the house since Nashville. What I did buy fit into my trinket budget.
  • I have been combing the house for yard sale items for tomorrow! We have rented a community center for $20 for the day to have the sale. They have tables and hanging racks, it's the way to go :)
  • I have been using up some of my gift cards. I lost (yes lost, how pathetic is that?) a $75 petsmart gift card. While doing my yard sale stuff I found it. I wouldn't throw $75 in cash around, why aren't I more careful with giftcards?
  • I did the Walgreens rebates for the month. I have the stuff ready to fax back for the other months. I discovered I didn't get credit for a lip gloss in Nov either. It was $10-ish, I'll be getting that back too.
  • I have organized some of my stockpile and wrote down what I am missing. Unless it's almost free, I won't be buying bodywash for... I don't, like 8 years :) Seriously though, I have 20 bottles of it, all free after rebates. That is YEARS of Walgreens/CVS stockpiling.

Things I'd like to improve on:
  • I'd like to cut out coke entirely. I have been making a green tea/reg tea combo with half the sugar and a lot of lemon that I am pretty happy with.
  • I'd like to stop drinking milk. I've read some pretty bad stuff about it lately that has turned me off of it. So I'll be taking a calcium supplement instead.
  • I want to try to do the food stamp challenge for a month. Basically you spend $90 a month on your food. If you wanted it to be really fair you wouldn't include anything you already had. For the first month I am going to include my taco Thursday group lunch and stuff I already have. Then maybe the month after, give up tacos (I know, I'm takin crazy here) and only include new things I buy. My friend asked me if I couldn't do a $160 budget, what made me think I could do $90? I don't know, I guess we'll see!

So here is my spending for the week: 2 taco meals ($10.22), 1 taco bell run (3.55) , 1 Chinese meal (5.75) and $9.90 for grapes, bananas, onions & laundry soap bar (to make my own detergent). $29.42 - wooohoooo!

So this is why I think I can do the $90 challenge. I am going to start July 1 with a meal plan so I won't worry about what to eat when.

So you might wonder why all this is going on, why bother if I am already living below my means?

  • The baby is coming, the baby is coming - hide your wallets! No really, a little worried about how much she is going to cost. I'd rather not spend the money when it's just me.
  • My 401K. I know that is an odd answer but MY 401K HIT $15,000 this week! I am so excited. I have been contributing to it for 4 years now. My first year was very pitiful, like 1% in order to get the company match. The next year I did a whole 3-5%. The past two years I have been slowly creeping it up and now I'm at 12%. I am going to increase it 1% every quarter until I hit the max.
  • I want the new car. In order to have the new car, part of the basement has to be converted to a garage. I have to rework one support under the deck and buy a traditional garage door. With an auto door opener, a door & the wood needed for support - it's 1K. I'm not going to park a brand new car in the driveway where the cats will get all over it.
  • Plus, I want the new car. But I am not going to do a 100% finance.

So there you go. I think I've written enough uninteresting things about myself today. Have a good weekend!

Monday, June 18, 2007


Moooommmmmy...hold me attention to meeeeeeee

This is what I do for an hour every day while I play online. No wonder my shoulder is all out of whack!

My baby is cute tho isn't he? :)

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Back to Red and White

Ok, remember the pink nursery with the pink and white bedding? Well I'm not going to use it. I wish I had waited just a bit but the pink room was a result of pure boredom, I wanted to buy something cute and I wanted it right now!

I even did a room swap, moved her to the front room and my office to the back. I don't know why I did that either. We'll call that boredom too.

So I am back to using the red and white stuff and moving her back into the back bedroom again. I am going to Home Depot today on the way to dad's to price bead board. Since it's a 10 X 10 room it shouldn't be too scary. I am going to do it halfway up with a rail, paint it white then do red above it. I am going to make cornices (sp? you know, those structured boxy looking things above windows) out of the second dust ruffle I bought. I also need to buy a new light for that room.

I am also going to do something I've wanted to do forever that is going to give my dad a coronary. I am going to cut the drywall out around the closet. I live in an old house with small closets. They are about 2 feet deep and 5 feet wide. The door to access the closet is less than 2 feet. So I loose quite a bit of space into the side voids. I am going to cut out the hole and put bi-folds up instead so I won't loose that space.

But anyway, I am going to start posting my extra stuff for sale on "Baby Loot for Sale" if you are shopping. I am going to price everything at what I paid for it which should be a good deal because I am a bargain shopper.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Banana Muffins

First, look how cute this is! It's my new rose pan :) Notice how nice and brown it is? Maybe my oven does work ok, maybe it's the super heavy bakeware I normally use. I started pondering.. maybe the heavy duty stuff conducts heat so well that the insides cook before it browns on top. Something to think about.

Ok so imagine this. Make a 2 size layer cake. One like twice the size of the other. Put the big layer down, then balance the little one in the middle. You could then circle the smaller layer with these roses and put 3 roses on top. You could then nuke icing and use it to "paint" the roses pink while you do the rest in white. I think that would be a cute little girl birthday cake :)

Anyway here is the recipe for banana muffins. It's a great way to use up bananas that go all spotty before you eat them.
Banana Muffins:
1.5 cups of self rising flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2-3 very ripe bananas
3/4 cup of sugar
1 large egg
1/3 cup of butter (I guess you can use margarine here too, I don't eat the stuff)

Squish the bananas, beat the egg & melt the butter. Mix this all together really well. Add all the dry ingredients together and slow mix into the wet stuff. Bake on 350 for 20-30 minutes depending on your oven. Add nuts if you have them. I think they are pretty good :)

Today was a good day. Took off from work to paint the deck then it rained so I
- sleep until 11
- made muffins
- ate muffins
- cleaned a bit
- took nap
- ate muffins
- cleaned a bit
- ate muffins
- took a LONG nap and here it is, 12:43. Half my muffins are gone and I don't think I'll sleep for a week. Oops.

How exciting :D

I've never had a cabin with a window - look! We are staying in the "Secret" cabin - cheapest one on the ship but has 2 windows.

I did it!

Wooohhoo I finally stuck to my budget!

I spent $15 eating out (2 lunches, one was very expensive), $4 at mid week and $19 yesterday as a replacement for today (I'm off today and my store is at work, 20 minutes away). $38 wooohhoo

And even though I cheated the last three weeks, there has been a substantial change in my bank account so far. I got paid yesterday and on paper I took out all of my utilities. When I checked online my utilities were paid several days before so I was ahead $200 just there. My ATM withdrawals were also $100 less. For those doing the math, a little bit of planning will pay for the Camaro I want next year (please ooooh please let a carseat fit in it!)

I like to read through frugal blogs to see if any of the stuff they are doing fits into my lifestyle. I read something interesting last night (wish I had marked the site) that she had a hard time with her budget too until she went through her cupboards and checked to see what was there from the last shopping trip. I though that's silly, I eat all my food every week. It's really silly me, I don't come anywhere close. I still have eggrolls from week one of my budget challenge along with a lot of the fish. I still have almost all of the stinky market food that was week 3 (I think?). From last week I did manage to eat half of it but still. So that was really eye opening.

Plus I've been thinking a lot about the baby and how that's going to work out $$ wise. Her biggest expense will be daycare at $400-440 a month. But dad said he would watch her two days and mom would watch her another. Well I can't find a daycare group that wants to fill a full spot with a part time kid. But I did find a preschool program for 1 year old that is $100 a month. It is 5 hours on Tuesday and Thursday and is 3 miles from the house. I was thinking I'd try to set her schedule so she naps on Tuesday and Thursday so I can finish up my hours for the week. It will be a savings of $3600 a year, that's quite substantial!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Okie Dokie

I had a friend tell me today that I have the blog of a 12 year old. My first response was ttttttttthppppppppppttttttt. My second response was "what's wrong with that?".

I know it's loud and full of useless info. But what else am I suppose to do while waiting for the kiddo?

So here is another fun thing for you to watch. It's a great video of Wishes at the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World. It's the full show of the snippet I have in my right nav bar (the castle one).

Sunday, June 10, 2007


This is what happens when you go to DIS to drool over people's Star Wars Weekend reports. You get directed to someones parade video. Then YouTube recommends stuff that's just as dumb as the thing you were looking at first lol







a loaf of bread that looks like bread and tastes like bread. This is experiment three and the only one that looked pretty when it came out of the oven (except for the edge where I dropped it because it was hot..oops). Now don't get me wrong, the other two were/are being eaten but they were lopsided, cracked and just funny looking. It's still a little pale but I think that's because my oven is really old and is not the same kind of ovens out now. It circulates air more, I can't remember what that's called. None of my food browns unless the broiler is on.

I prefer a lower round loaf because I like to make mini sandwhiches for lunch. Plus they fit into my pan better for french toast.

My next baking attempt will be home made waffles. I am going to break open my nifty Cinderella waffle Maker and try this receipe out next weekend Whole Grain Waffles. The idea is once you've made a bunch and frozen them, you can pop them into the toaster to heat them back up. I'm going to wait until next week tho because I really want to make an effort at my new budget and stay out of the grocery store until next Friday.

Isn't it cute? If it hadn't been so cheap I would of gone for a regular cheapo waffle maker. But for $2 extra, I'll make princess waffles :)


Finally, the mucky mucks at Chevy figured out that they were losing sales because they no longer had an affordable sports car (Corvettes, as lovely as they are - way too expensive). So for several years Chevy has pretty much been giving Ford the market with sales close to 200,000 sports cars a year.

I'd like to introduce the 2009 Camara and my next car. Prices will be comparable to the Mustang, I am hoping they will make them in navy blue. I am going to white stripe the hood too (yeeeehaw..I know lol). In the past the body styles have been the same for each engine size and if they keep to that, I am going to get a v6 manual. If I have to go up to a v8 to get the styling below then I'll suck it up and do it. But in the end I'll have a metallic blue 3-Gen and a navy 5-gen....I'll be a happy girl!

Friday, June 08, 2007

Day 14?

Am I already up to 14 days of trying to be good? I guess so. And I guess I really need to change it to the "30 days of me half a$$ trying to be good" because I'm not sticking to my plan.

This week - 2 taco days ($13) & 2 Food City trips ($11 & $21) = $45 soooo close! Next week I am going to challenge myself to just spend $20. $5 on tacos (it's a work social thing) and $15 on milk and fruit. My freezer is packed full of really good stuff, it's time to eat it.

This week I spent my $32 on green tea bags, cranberry juice, smoked sausages, lots of bananas (my fav), a pack of fake crab, milk, fudge bars, an avocado, SIX packs of my eggrolls on sale for 99 cents again!, flour, mayo & 3/4 pound of lemon pepper white fish (can't remember which one). This is a little light on fruit & veggies but I have frozen of both that I am trying to use up.

Now, ask me why I bought an avocado and fake crab?


I am the proud owner of 100 sheets of nori from the stinky market. I also have a bag of sushi rice. Did you know 100 sheets of nori makes 1000 pieces of sushi?? Who knew? I am going to make California Rolls first to practice (minus the caviar). And no, no raw fish at home, that requires a certain grade of fish that you just can't get in East Tennessee.

Also, I've started making bread again. I am out of practice so I tried the Hillybilly Housewife's beginner bread. I added sesame seeds to make it pretty. And I discovered the secret to baking good bread, it's the pan. I am using a high end Cuisinart POT to cook it in. It conducts heat evenly and provides a nice round shape. I am going to branch out to cinnamon rolls and muffins next. Baking is fun!

Ok, I've talked about food enough now, bye!

P.S. First batch! I lost two wrappers because I put too much stuff in it, they literally burst open. Next time I'm buying real crab, I didn't want to waste the good stuff in my first try.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

18 Month LID Anniversary

18 months! How crazy is that?

I left last Saturday to head to Nashville to see my buddy Amy and to get refingerprinted for my new 171H. Had an excellent time! Amy is a chef so there are always good eats when you are with her. We had seafood stew (clams, red sauce) that she made at the house, sushi from Rusans, lamb sandwiches from Firefly and "Chinese" from PF Changs. Soo much food, sooo good!

Shopping was fantastic too! I was a good child and didn't go over my "allowance" (for once!). I got one of those castle looking cake molds in silicone for $4 (pic totally stolen from Ebay ha)

a rose cupcake pan in silicone for $3

a set of silicone pot holder and mits (4 total) for $8 for my dad (no pic from Ebay - sigh-)
and a set of gizmos that will help him make nicer pirogies. You stick the pastry in it and it folds in half and crimps the edges. I plan on stealing one out of the set so I can make dumplings :D

I also got a Sushi cookbook, a Cinderella waffle maker (ok I know, but the cheapo makers are $8, this one was $12 and I think the baby will get a kick out of having Cinderella on her waffles) & a heavy duty carrot peeler (which I always say parrot killer, dyslexia strikes again!). So nothing too weird, I always seem to buy lots of kitchen doo-hickies when I visit Amy!

I also travelled to my favorite junk store, a Goodwill in West Nashville. I was able to find a bowl and 4 coffee mugs to my dishes for $3 total. I've had these dishes for 11 years, I'd recommend them to anyone :) I also took advantage of their 10 items for $5.00 sale. When you visit a store in the nice area of town, you find nice loot even if it's just 50 cents a piece. I got my dad two pairs of like new dockers, 2 pairs of jogging pants, a suit coat (that was a stretch, I don't know if we'll be able to match it to pants), and a golf shirt (the kind with the weird fabric that you can see through in the light but not when you have it on). I really just wanted the pants for him but had to get to 10 items to get it on special. I got two pairs of Lane Bryant dress pants to Ebay/yardsale, a pair of girls Old Navy sporty pants that are really cute (yardsale) and a tank dress I think my aunt would wear. All for $5...not too shabby eh?

I also got a replacement cocktail dress for the cruise. My cool shiny black and white one from last time...what a pain in the rear to wear! It was slippery, wouldn't stay up and the straps went every whichcha way. Part of it was my fault, I did buy it in a size larger than normal because I didn't want it to be tight. So I am going to put it in the yard sale and try to get my some of my whole $18 back :) The new dress is similar in cut to my favorite black dress but it's plum and has some beads around the neckline. I'll post a pic after I find my camera's charging base. It was just $15, you have to LOVE Ross!

I also made a stop at what we call the stinky market. K&S in Nashville has great deals on odd things that I can't find here at home. I get lots of sauces, herbs, spices and dried mushrooms from here. Tofu is also half the cost of Wal-mart. The reason it's called the stinky store is they sell a lot of live fish and the smell is, well stinky. I guess if I had 200 live fish in tanks in my house it would stink too! If I still lived in Nashville I'd buy all my produce and fish there, it's so cheap. I also made a stop at Sysco and bought 2 1-pound blocks of yeast. That is about 150 packets of yeast for $5. I plan to start baking again and I'll post pics of my masterpieces shortly :D

Oh and I'm up to day 11 on being good. I kept to my $40 in the grocery store piece (stinky store & sysco) but I'm way over on eating out, like $60. Add that to the $25 I cheated on the first week, and well, I really stink at this new budget! I think I'll go pack a lunch now :D