Friday, July 30, 2010

Happy 5th Birthday Danika and Makenzie!!!!

I can't belive the twins are already 5!!!! Wasn't it just yesterday that they were this little?....

They sure were cute!!!! And now they are just gorgeous!!!


















Here is Laynee helping me back their special brownies while they are at school...





We brought cupcakes to each of the girls' classes. Here is Makenzie being sung too by her class...














And Danika being sung to by her class....











After school we went swimming...






Then we came home to open gifts.







Here is the BArbie pool...the favorite gift....











Doesn't Chance look like he was enjoying the party?!



I love those girls!!!!!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

First Day of School

So my kids started school today. It was a LONG day to say the least. And it had it's fair share of ups and downs! But at the end of the day.....the kids had fun at school and are sound asleep after a busy day!


Aren't they cute?


They each picked their own outfits and backpacks (although there was backpack drama which is a whole other LONG story).


Here is Danika ready for her first day of Kindergarten.....







And Makenzie ready for her first day of Kindergarten.....






And check out their trandy shoes that they HAD to have.....


Amazing how bling makes a girl so happy!
Here is my Kyler ready for the 1st grade....






He had a tough morning. But he is a trooper and has moved on. Tomorrow will be better!!!!




Friday, July 23, 2010

How I keep my grocery budget at $60 per week....

Yes, I spend on average $60 per week on groceries for a family of 6. And that includes health and beauty, cleaning supplies, paper supplies, etc. We only use name brand products. And it is not hard!!!

How do I do it?........COUPONS!!!!

Now I used to think that coupons could only save you a couple bucks, at most, per week. And that would barely cover the cost of buying the newspaper! I gave some feeble attemps at couponing and then gave up! There were never couponds for things I used!

Several months ago I found a neat website: http://www.krazycouponlady.com

I read her lessons on couponing and decided it was worth giving it a try! And I am soooo glad I did. I save sooo much money now!

Let me give you an idea of some of my savings:

-This week I bought 2 large tubes of Colgate Advanced toothpaste. I made $2 off the transaction! Yes, they paid me to take the toothpaste home! I NEVER pay for toothpaste or toothbrushes anymore. They are always FREE!

-Earlier this week I went to Fry's and got 15 packages of Philadelphia Cream Cheese and 2 Suave deoderants. My total for 17 items, after tax, was $1.69!!! Yes, you read that correctly!

-Currently my husband has a stock pile of 14 large Old Spice body washes and 3 Nivia body washes 9regulary $7 each). My total for all of them: $0!!!! Body wash is always FREE!!!! He also has a stock of about a dozen degree deoderants that I paid just 25 cents for!

-My family has had as many as 54 boxes of name brand cereal in our pantry!!! I got many for free, most for 25 cents and a few for 50 cents. Never any more than that!!!!

Here are some questions that I get asked ALL the time by friends and family:

Where do you get your coupons?

I get most of my coupons from the Sunday paper (Arizona Republic for AZ people). There are always at least one packet of coupons in the Sunday paper and sometimes as many as 3!

I also get lots of coupons online. You can get them at www.smartsource.com
or www.redplum.com
I follow The Krazy Coupon Lady and Monay Saving Mom on Facebook and so they post when there are good coupons!

Aren't they mostly coupons for stuff you don't use?

I do NOT use every coupon in the paper by any means!!! I only get stuff that my family will use. Here is a list of some of the products that I often have coupons for to give you an idea: cereal, granolla bars, Ice Cream, frozen pizzas, frozen veggies, jelly, yogurt, lunch meat, hot dogs, juice, pop tarts, brownie mix, cake mix, soups, hamburger helper, cream cheese, cheese, diapers, paper towels, toilet paper, napkins, shampoo, conditioner, body wash, razors and razor blades, shaving cream, sunblock, soap, make up, laundry detergent, deoderant, tampons, all cleaning supplies, and batteries. Do you use any of these products? Then you should be using coupons!!! I have also gotten lots of coupons for restaurants and even FREE movie tickets!

How many stores do you shop at?

I do go to more than one store during most weeks. I have my standard grocery store that I do most of my shopping at. Right now that store is Fry's because it is the only close grocery store, but my favorite is Safeway. Then during the week I will stop at Walgreens and/or CVS. OCCASIONALLY, I will stop by a second grocery store if they have a super deal on something we use A LOT. Now this may seem like a lot of stops to you, but I bet you alread stop at multiple stores if you really think about it. How many times do you realize you have run out of something and make a special trip? Plus, the Walgreens and CVS shopping trips are really quick because you are usually just picking up some FREE shampoo or body wash! I do this with 4 young kids in tow. So I am sure you could do it too!

How many newspapers do you get?

I started with just 1 and now I get 2. Plus, sometimes family members who don't coupon will give me their inserts. Sometimes on a Sunday morning you can find an insert sitting on a table at McDonalds! But 1 newspaper will give you lots of deals!

Why don't you join Coupon Sense?

Coupon Sense is a company that will match up sales with coupons in your local area. They charge a monthly fee. I think this was great several years ago. But blogs have changed everything. Why pay for a service that bloggers are offering for FREE?! There are tons and tons of blogs who match up sale prices and coupons. Do a google search and you can find blogs in your area! But I am still a Krazy Coupon Lady fan. (Although her Albertsons matchups aren't the same for me. Everything elese is!)

Enough for today....later I will post about shopping at CVS and Walgreens!!! They are the secret to the most FREE stuff in my opinion!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Laynee's First Day of Preschool

Laynee has been anxious to go to Preschool ever since the twins went last Fall. For the last three weeks, she has been asking me veryday "How many days until I go to school?" Well, today was the day. She was thrilled!!!! As I was getting her dressed I said "You look so cute." She said, "I know! My teacher is just going to love me!" Ha ha ha!!!










She is going to Copper Basin Elementary School for Preschool where she will be receiving speech therapy. The school is fairly new and very close to our house. She goes three days a week for a total of 8 hours a week. Just enough for me! Her teacher's name is Mrs. Albert and she seems nice. I was impressed because she remembered Laynee's name after meeting her for just a minute at Meet the Teacher Night! So Laynee didn't cling to me or cry. Heck, she didn't even wave! She grabbed the teacher's hand and just left!
Off to get her now! Can't wait to hear what she did in school!




Monday, July 19, 2010

Disneyland Video

My husband made this cute little movie with clips from our Disney trip. I LOVE it!
video

My 29th Birthday...

.....365 days until I am OLD!!!!


So I celebrated my 29th birthday for my husband's entire 4 day weekend! I am just THAT spoiled!!! So on Thursday we took the kids to the Aquarium, the mall, and out for dinner. Then on Friday we took them swimming and to see the movie Despicable Me. We came home and Scott grilled up some huge steaks and the kids helped him make me a birthday cake! Then on Saturday (my real birthday) Scott and the kids made me a huge breakfast and took me to the mall to pick out some new clothes for me. After that we went out to Oreganos (my fave!) for pizza, beer, and Pizookie. YUM!!! Then we went to our pool where the community was having a HUGE party (I told the kids it was my birthday party and they were very impressed! lol) They had a gal singing who was incredible!!! And she was country! They had a dunk tank, home made icees, balloon animals, and prizes. It was an amazing night! Kyler said it was the most awesome party ever!!! I have to agree. Here are a few of the pics from the day....



























29 Things I LOVE at 29:
(in no particular order)
1. My hardworking husband
2. Spending time with the 4 cutest kids EVER
3. Popcorn with M&Ms
4. Glee
5. Digi Scrapbooking
6. Coke (the drink of course!)
7. Photography
8. Stamping
9. Wine
10. Pizookie from Oreganos
11. Country Music (especially the men!)
12. Facebook
13. Coupon shopping
14. Chimichangas with shredded beef
15. Swimming with the kids
16. Young and the Restless (my very guilty pleasure!)
17. Nicholas Sparks books
18. my Cannon Rebel camera
19. my MOPS group
20. Blogging
21. Traveling
22. How I Met Your Mother
23. Strawberry Milkshakes from Cold Stone
24. Erin Hilderband books
25. my friends
26. getting new clothes
27. the smell of new books (it is strange, I know)
28. CVS
29. Cheese




Thursday, July 15, 2010

For the scrapbooks...

I did some scrapbooking during the long road trip to California...









Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A Sears Family Favorite Recipe

Dinner tonight was so delicious that I just HAD to share the recipe with you! It is super simple and can even be frozen! I call it Cream Cheese Chicken. You would think someone creative like me could come up with a better name!

Ingredients:

Chicken Tenders (we like the tenders but you could also use breasts)
An envelope of Italien Salad dressing mix
Half a stick of butter
1 can of Cream of Chicken Soup
1 8oz package of cream cheese

1. Melt butter in a frying pan. Add the Italien Dressing Mix.
2. Brown the Chicken Tenders in the butter mixture.
3. Add the can of soup and cream cheese. Stir until melted and creamy.

Now you could just serve it at this point. But I love my chicken to be extra tender (Kyler can hardly chew chicken with his teeth issues!)

4. Put the chicken mixture in a baking dish and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.

DONE! Now you can serve it. Or, you can cool it and put it in a large ziplock bag in the freezer!!! I have frozen it lots of time and it makes a super quick and yummy dinner for one of those busy school nights! Just thaw and reheat in the oven!!!!

I serve rice, veggies, and apple sauce with my chicken. You want to spice up your white rice? I mike Minute Rice using a can of chicken broth instead of water. It is delicious!!! And it is still white so the kids don't know the difference!!!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

So Sick!!!

So I am STILL sick! It has been almost a month!!! I went to the doctor 2 weeks ago and they said I had Pneumonia. I took my antibiotics for the full 10 days. But STILL sick! So I went back today. I had to bring all the kids and I had all kinds of studd done including an xray, blood work, and a breathing treatment. I still have Pneumonia. Only now I also have a Reactive Airway Disease and possibly Valley Fever. I am on a bunch more meds. These medicines just HAVE to work because I am tired of coughing!!!!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Disneyland!!!!

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Disneyland!!!!! I love the rides, the characters, the shows, and the excited kids!!! SO much fun every single time! It just never gets old! This year we spent 2 days in Disneyland and California Adventures. Since there is so much to do, we spent 15 hours per day in the park!!! The kids were awesome! They especially loved the rides (Tea Cups, Haunted House, Toy Story Mania, Buzz, Splash Mountain, and more!) the Pixar parade (Toy Story float was awesome!!!) and the night shows we went to. We say fireworks the first night and then we saw the new World of Color show on the 2nd night. Both were very impressive! I already can't wait to go back to Disney. The plan is to go to Disney World for Fall break of 2011. I hope we can do it!























The army men from Toy Story were so funny!!! Kyler got a kick out of it!
















I am mad that my Mickey picture is fuzzy! Clearly we HAVE to go back!!!







Scott really wanted to go on the Grizzly River Run. So we took all the kids. We got soaked and it was COLD!!! Makenzie got so scared on the ride and was screaming. Then in the middle of screaming she stopped and started laughing. She said "This ride is so funny!" Then she went back to screaming! It gave us all a good laugh! (And she was even less pleased when we did Splash Mountain the night day and she was in the front of the boat! lol!)