Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Inbetween booty

I popped out today to do some in between shopping, you know, after one holiday and before the next.  Just enough to get through.  These week-end holidays have my nice little routine all discombobulated!  The bonus is that the Dollar General Market is having another $5 off coupon this Saturday, Jan. 1st.  They seem to do this every other week, for one day only, always a Sat. and never before a holiday.  That $5 off takes care of sale tax on $50 worth of food!  Anyway . . . I just wanted to brag on a major mark-down find I found today at the Bi-Rite.  I snagged their last three bags of fresh cranberries at less than half price!  I don't know about where you are, but here they reached $2.50 a bag - I know!  So we only had one bag for Thanksgiving and one for Christmas.  These I will freeze for next year (they are good in the freezer for up to a year) when they might just be $3 a bag, geesh.  I got a couple of other good finds as well.  I just want to remind everyone in these tight times to always look for reduced items.  Most major stores mark perishables and discontinued items to half price and keep them in a special location.  There are even stores that cater to discontinued items, down here they are called grocery outlet stores or united grocery outlets (u-go's).  You can often times even find organic items at these stores.  I do the bulk of my shopping with reduced food and at our Dollar General Market.  I save on gas as out local Wal-marts and other chains are over 20 miles away.   I haven't grocery shopped at a Wal-mart in over a year, except to pick up some extras while camping.  However I will go to our 'uptown' Kroger to get hard to find specialty items such as aluminum -free baking powder and egg replacement powder.

While we are on the subject of being frugal, I want to pass along a little tibbet of wisdom I gleaned and have made my mantra: Never buy anything new if you don't have too.  That has sure helped us live on one income so I can be a SAHM whom homeschools and raised godly children.  I mean if you bed sheet rips . . . sew it.  Paying  $15 for a large bag of clothing (works out to about  $.80 for 20 pieces) is much better for growing kids than $10 an item at the chain store.  You get the picture.  Take back your lives and your cash and stop being lemmings with a heard mentality for the consumer company's who make cheap items so that you will have to keep purchasing new every 4-6 months!  And above all else, let God take care of you.  Pray to Him, give all glory to Him and put all your faith in Him.  He needs your help far less often than you suppose.  Look to Matthew 6:19-34. 

Ok, enough, off my soap box (recycled don't ya know) now.  LOL  Blessings, Beth Ann

Tuesday, December 28, 2010


I am proud to say that I finished my first commissioned knitting piece on time : )  Although it gave me kittens quite a few times, but I tend to be a perfectionist.  It was worth it by the look of the finished piece however.  I took the order right before Thanksgiving and started it a couple days after.  I finished it two days before Christmas and put the finishing touches and fringe on it Christmas eve, about one hour before delivering it!  I was very happy with this piece and myself for setting a goal and finishing it.  I might have been able to do it faster if I hadn't also been teaching school, cooking, decorating for the holidays, attending parties, gift shopping/wrapping and cleaning!  Whew!  Many people saw me working on this and now they want one too!  I said no more scarves until next year!  I would actually like to do something for myself for a change, but we will see.  I am still working on a pair of socks and I still have that specialty yarn for the knitted cargo pants I want to make.  Sigh.  While I was helping B with her knitting last night (see, nothing for me), Z walked up and asked if I could make him a matching beanie for his scarf.  Double sigh.  I still have B's scarf to finish and none of these people pay!  LOL

Here is the finished scarf, in Griffindor House colors.

The small narrow strips indicate a year 3/4 scarf

Here are the two Harry Potter scarves side by side.  Larger stripes are year 1/2  and this one is Z's in Raven claws house colors.  Other differences are that year 1/2 is knitted in long tube and tied off with tassels.  Scarf 3/4 is a single ribbed knit with fringe ends.  Both are pretty good looking and a nice pattern to knit.

Let me know if you want one and I can also make matching hats, mittens, socks, and bookmarks : )
Blessings, Beth Ann

Monday, December 27, 2010

All done

Am I the only one who feels a post holiday let down?  I almost hate to see the actual holiday arrive.  The anticipation is the best part, that and seeing the smiles when someone opens a gift they adore!  But here are a few of those smiles as we close out the holiday memories of 2010.

Here E is rocking out to here new 'electric' guitar.  It came with a psychedelic mic stand too.  If you know E, then you know how much fun she is having with this!

We make sure all the kids get plenty of art/craft items.  Here is Z with some 'blow' art pens and stencils.  He also received two boxes of origami (which he is great at), and it is almost empty!

Another million dollar smile shot of B - LOL  The smile is for more 'Twilight' stuff, sigh.

And here is twin son E, busy building with the new marble run set, sent from Vegas.  It has kept all the kids and even K pretty busy, also a cat as well : )

One last look at the tree for another year.

Blessings, Beth Ann

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Lights of the season

I finely found the time to pop outside to take some pic's of the lights in our yard.  It is an on-going project of my oldest son's.  He works on it and adds to it daily.  He is already plotting what he wants to add next year (think frosty from Christmas with the Kranks).  We have taken to calling him Clark, as in Clark Griswold from National Lampoons Christmas Vacation - LOL  The only thing holding him in check is money or lack of it.  On the other hand, last week we came home from church and there was a huge box of holiday lights and extras on our front porch.  Pre-loved, but still . . . The word has gotten out, and I couldn't be prouder : )  There are worse things for a kid to be into, right?  Let me share a few glimpse with you:

This is our side yard, next to the main drive way.  I received the deer last year as a gift, which Z promptly put together and put outside!

Here is our mail box.  It is hard to tell, but Z affixed a star to the top post.  The snowman flag hangs from a solar lamp post and changes with the season.  This pic is of the other side yard, next to the RV drive way and fence.

This is an angled view of the front and does include some of the side yard and driveway.  We bought this little snowman to make sure we had one each year since snow is a scarce commodity here.  Notice the small inflatable toy soldier in front of the porch pillar, there is a matching one on the other side and ditto with the spiral tree too.  If you look in the window you can see our Christmas tree.

Here is a view inside looking out . . .

And this pic is just for Grandma S and has nothing to do with Christmas except that we miss you and Grandpa D and wish we were together this time of year.  Just wanted you to know Pumpkin is still kicking and missing you.   Remember the holiday you were so busy feeding her turkey you didn't realize baby Eli was putting stuffing in your pockets?  LOL  Love you and the rest of our family too.  I hope sharing these pic's helps to make us feel closer  as we can't be with ya all.  Hugs and kisses.

Blessings, Beth Ann

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Last Sunday in church we learned about doing for others and how even Jesus washed the feet of His disciples.  I received the chance today to do something for 'others', and it felt soooooooo good!  I wanted to thank the people who gave me the opportunity to spread a little Christmas spirit to a family who needed some help.  It was awesome and I can't wait to do it again!  I love my church family and am thankful everyday that God led us here!

Speaking of Christmas cheer, aren't these two, too cute?  They are getting so big, can't believe they will be 7 in the spring ~ wow!

I know it's hard to tell, but there is more than one ferret in this picture : )  The big one on top is a cinnamon male named Hobb, and he is very social.

These two aren't half bad either - LOL  Zach will be 18 in three weeks!  WOW and double wow!  When did that happen?  Bre is turning into such a beauty.  Notice the wonderful brace - free smile, she is such a sweetie : )

Well enough bragging on my blessings, Beth Ann
"Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving" Psalm 95:2a

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Holiday happenings

I know it's been a few days since I blogged, but blessedly there really hasn't been much going on here.  I have been cooking, cleaning and knitting on a commission piece.  Hubby has been doing the Zone thing and some car jobs, praise the LORD!  Those extra jobs ALWAYS come just when we need them most, the way God planned I imagine : )  The kids have been, well kids - LOL  The twins are pretty wound up about the holidays and even the older kids have been spotted shaking a few packages.  The weather has been the big scene stealer.  We had an Indian summer, right through Thanksgiving.  It was wonderful to enjoy our holiday on the deck in bright sunny weather.  Then bang!  Next thing you know the furnace is on!  We even had three snow days for our public school system here.  There is only one plow in our county and that doesn't help with the ice in the hallows.  Don't fear though, we still had school here!  LOL   Other big news is that as of yesterday, two weeks until the end of the year, we met the deductible on our pharmacy insurance and I got my pills for free!  Yea baby, that's what I'm talking about - LOL  Better late than never I guess : )

This one of our most cherished ornaments.  We picked it up on Edisto Island, South Carolina.

We went Christmas caroling with our church last night.  Good times were had by all.  It was very icy and I almost fell, but son and hubby saved me.  I have great guys and am very blessed.  A friend took this family pic of us after at the coffee & cocoa portion of the evening.  I wonder if I can get these into cards in time for Christmas?

This is another favorite ornament.  I made it the center of a wreath I made for our front door.  Sh .......

Blessings, Beth Ann

Saturday, December 04, 2010


Last night was soooo much fun that I thought I would blog about it this morning, while enjoying my raspberry-chocolate friendship coffee : )
We did something we don't usually do very often . . . went out as a family and had dinner!  All six of us, plus B's friend and Z's girl friend = zoo!  We picked Z up from work and let him drive (always fun) into the 'boro.  Just want to say right here, praise the Lord for our Durango and it's 8 seat belts : )   Our first stop was Animal City (guess which one of us wanted to go there . . . ).  Love that place, they always have fun and exotic animals as well as the mundane, at good prices.  They are not a chain, but good christian family owned business that puts the welfare of the animals first.  Believe me, take a look and you will notice that not one animal looks like it has missed a meal in quite a while - LOL  Yesterday they had a pen of 'Beannies' or what we call 'Deagles', a Beagle/dachshund mix, puppies.  They were a brown dapple, and sooooooooooooo cute!  I am such a sucker for a doxin, sigh.
Next stop was dinner at Ci-Ci's pizza.  It is a buffet place w/video games.  In other words, a kids haven and total chaos reigns.  Yes, the kids loved it, especially the twins.  The last time we were there the twins were two.  With the Christmas carols playing on the radio and all the decorations lite up in town, and all the kids chattering away; it was such a festive atmosphere, sigh- happiness. After dinner we strolled down to the Goodwill which was in the same mall and poked around.  Clark, I mean, Z (we call him Clark, for Clark Griswold in the Christmas vacation movie) scored several boxes of un-opened Christmas lights.  He was litterly floating in estcasy on the way home.  We let him drive back home and after we dropped off his girlfriend, well it was 10:30 before we got the twins in bed.  Z decided he had to put all the lights up last night, so there he was at 11 p.m. and some how he coerced his sister into helping him!  We went to bed!
Now it is the next day and the twins still got up early : (  They have been battling colds for a week and now they are weepy.  It is also raining outside and I find myself wondering if I should take them to the Christmas Parade at noon or not . . .    Anyway, it's worth it.  Last night was soooo wonderful.  As the children get older it seems to get more complicated time wise and money wise too, to travel as a family and do things outside our home.  I feel last night was a special gift from God.

For the past couple days I was in a funk, thinking and praying on some farm land, still : (  We have been praying on this for about 3 years now.  The answer is always, not now.  Sometimes I just get sooooo impatient.  Especially when we are having issues with the managiery we already have.  I know we need more room and I don't ever want to be a problem to our neighbors.  So I spent two days on the computer looking at property everywhere from Maine to Montana.  Yesterday I was so frustrated that I layed down and did some heavy duty praying.  I told God I would go anywhere He wanted me to, just let me know what His will was.  Nothing.  When I hear from God it is usually pretty quick.  I think I haven't been still or quiet enough lately.  After a while, when I was very quiet and still, I got it.  The answer was that I could go anywhere I wanted, as long as I stayed in Cannon Co.   LOL  I always knew God had a sense of humor.  But I was also reminded of all that He moved to get us here.  We were not headed here when we started out.  The answer floored me and gave me reason to sit and think and remember some more.  I went upstairs feeling sad and sorry for myself.  I came down feeling restored and remembered by my father, savior and God!  I am sooo grateful that He is never to busy to let me know that He knows my wants, but  not to always give it to me if it's not whats best.  Just like any good father would!  Amen.  I hope this makes sense.  I have had to stop typing several times, as I have to keep putting out fires with weepy children and answering questions for a husband who apparently knows where nothing is in this house we have lived in for almost ten years now - LOL  Man I love this house, this family, life and God!  AMEN

Blessings, Beth Ann

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Time passing . . .

Thought I should check in, it's been a week or so since I last blogged.  There has been some ups and downs.  The ups are; Thanksgiving was sooooooo wonderful!  At one point there were almost two dozen people here!  Only half that stayed to eat, the others came and went for coffee, fellowship and dessert.  The weather was perfect and so was the food.  Hubby deep fried a 20 lb. for us and a 9 lb. for some friends to take home.  We also had some blooming onions ~ delish!!!!  There were 3 different coffee's, 4 different pies and more finger foods than the kids could eat in one sitting (and they tried).  Another up was black Friday.  We didn't do the actual black Friday thing, but that was hubbies pay day, and there was some overtime on there.  So we did the bulk of our holiday shopping before 8 a.m. and I am proud to say we stayed in the 'bury.  Between that and the computer, we now have 95% of our Christmas shopping done.  After that I headed into the city or the 'boro with a friend, and we went to a huge sale at a resale place.  I scored some flannel sheets for $3, yea me!  I had been pricing out a second pair of them for our queen size bed, so was a major find.  Now for the down side . . . The night before Thanksgiving our cat Bubbles passed away.  It was sudden and it was sad.  She was our paralyzed cat, and her bladder collapsed.  That is common we are told, in animals that have to be expressed manually.  We only had her two years, but she was special.  Our oldest son took it extremely hard as it followed on the heals of him loosing his much beloved guinea pig (whom he can't sleep without).  So our house has been full of sudden angry outbursts and  much misdirected anger.  He is such a sensitive soul and we can only pray and encourage him that this is a lesson on which path his future may rest.

Here is Bubbles in her 'pack n' play' that we borrowed from the twins

Here is Bubbles at a birthday party for another one of our cats, Tina, back in Sept.

Bubbles liked to be put on the back of the sofa to sun her buns, like all other cats

Bubbles was brought to the animal clinic after being attacked by about 6 pit pulls and we aren't sure how old she was, some where between 1 and 2.   RIP Bubbles 2006-2010

Blessings, Beth Ann