Goals

Weekly Goal Update for Week 39

1. Walk 500 miles this year (374 down and 126 to go)

We actually had rain this week, so I walked half of my ten miles outside and the other half indoors using walking videos and hand weights to make up for the flat terrain.

2. Eat low carb everyday

I did this for all 7 days.

3. Read two non fiction books each month Accomplished

Educated: A MemoirFor the Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards

This month I read For the Love by Jen Hatmaker and Educated by Tara Westover. **I highly recommend both!

4. Have one no spend week each month Accomplished

I completed this early in the month.

5. Try to buy nothing new this year.

Nothing new was bought this week, but I did find lots of great deals at the thrift store. **These will be posted in my Five Frugal Things post

6. Have two date nights each month.  Accomplished

We had an at home date night this week.

7. Have two family game nights each month Accomplished

8. Add six new products to my Teachers pay Teachers store (4 completed and 2 left)

I am currently working on a study guide for Mansfield Park.

9.  $5 Weekly Challenge

sept haul
September Charity Haul

This week I added pancake mix and syrup to my September charity collection and plan to drop the items off at the food bank this week.

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Frugal Accomplishments

Five Frugal Things

1. Walmart finds

sushi rice
The rice rang up for $1.50!

This week I found a few great deals on Walmart’s clearance aisle.  I picked up two boxes of granola bars for $2 each and two bags of sushi rice for $1.50 each. **The sushi rice was an especially great deal for around here, considering Publix sells a small container for $7!

2. Made my own curriculum

We are starting our second 8 week section of homeschool this week, so that means that I have been writing out assignments, questions, and tests for the past few weeks in preparation.  Considering that this saves me hundreds of dollars a year, I try not to complain too much:)

3. Packed snacks and drinks

We had a church picnic this weekend and decided to bypass all the delicious food trucks, by bringing our own food and drinks.  **I did buy the kids a snow cone so they did not feel too deprived.

4. Coupon

Our Honda dealership sent us two separate coupons in the mail over the past month for future services.  I did not know which one would work out the best for the types of service we needed, so I sent both with my husband.  Apparently they let him use both coupons since we technically had two services done and saved $90.

5. Free online classes

My daughter is taking Spanish and Sign language as foreign languages this year for high school credit, so we have been searching for ways to supplement her textbooks.  We have been using Duolingo for Spanish practice this year and that has been working out very well, but we needed an option for sign language as well.   Luckily my daughter’s sign language teacher recommended a site called ASL University that offers free sign language lessons that my daughter can use to supplement her textbook and co-op classes.  **I am always happy to tell people that it does not have to cost a fortune to have a well rounded homeschool education…especially if you put in a little time and effort:)

Goals

Goal Update for Week 38

1. Walk at least 500 miles this year (364 down and 136 to go)

I walked 9 miles this week and my wonderful husband joined me almost every time so we had lots of great conversations:)

2. Eat low carb every day

I did this for 6 days this week

3. Read two non-fiction books each month Accomplished

Educated: A Memoir

This week I read Educated by Tara Westover.  I did not read any reviews or even a summary about this book before I picked it up, so I had no idea what I was getting myself into!  (I tend to avoid books that have a lot of stressful situations that never really get resolved, so this book kind of tortured me in so many ways)

The story follows a girl who is being raised in a very unconventional family, which is led by an unpredictable, bipolar father.  The book chronicles the challenges she faces (ex:  lack of formal education, parental neglect, and abuse by an unstable brother) and how she rises above those circumstances to excel in college and beyond.  **Warning:  This is not a feel good book at all.  Even though she becomes successful in the end, the traumas that she endured during her life continue to haunt her future.  The writing was really captivating though, so I stayed up to 2am to finish it…yawn…

4. Have one no spend week each month Accomplished

5. Buy nothing new this year

Nothing new was bought this week

6. Add six new products to my Teachers pay Teachers store (4 out of 6 completed)

No progress this week:(

7. Have two family game nights each month Accomplished

This week we played Cadoo and Moustache Smash.

8. Have two date nights each month

One down and one to go

9. $5 Weekly Challenge

This week I picked up a 5 boxes of Macaroni and cheese to donate to the foodbank.

 

Frugal Accomplishments

Five Frugal Things

1. Book It Program

book it

We received our Book It package in the mail this week and my son is now very excited to start earning pizzas by simply reading books this school year…who doesn’t love pizza??

2. Packed snacks and lunches

I think packing snacks and lunches to take while we run errands or go to the park, has to be the biggest money saver in our household.  Our favorite snacks to eat on the go are string cheese, nuts, chips, and granola bars.  **Also, I have noticed that if I have a snack and a cold drink waiting in the car, my son tends to fuss less when its time to leave somewhere fun.  Please tell me your kids have thrown fits when its time to leave the park too!!

3. Kellogg Free Book Program

kellogg cereal

I noticed on a box of cereal that the Kellogg’s company is giving away a free book for each box of cereal sold.  The customer can either choose to donate the book or keep it for their child.  Since we are book lovers in my house, I am planning on giving these five new books as Christmas gifts this year. **To sweeten this deal, each box of cereal was only $.99 at Kroger this week.

4. Decluttering = $$

My husband has been decluttering this week and decided to sell off a lot of his beer making equipment.  Luckily, there is a huge beer making community in North Alabama, so everything is selling rather quickly. **As a bonus, he has also met a lot of beer making enthusiasts, who have promised to send him some samples as a thank you.

5.  E-coupons

I made sure to download numerous e-coupons onto my Kroger card before I left for the store this week (I usually forget half the time!)  This alone helped me to save almost $10 on my grocery bill.

 

What did you do to save (or make) money this week??

Goals

Weekly Goal Update for Week 37

1. Walk at least 500 miles this year (355 down and 145 to go)

Wow there are just 15 weeks left in the 2018! I am going to be cutting it a little close, but I think that I should hit 500 miles by the end of December.  This week I walked 9 miles outside and 1 mile indoors.

2. Eat low carb each day

I did this for 6 days.

3. Read two non-fiction books each month

For the Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards

This week I read For the Love by Jen Hatmaker.  I was looking for something inspirational and funny and this book happens to check both boxes.  Jen Hatmaker is one of my favorite Christian authors mostly due to her great sense of humor and her understanding of the human condition.  In each of her books, Jen Hatmaker finds a special way of challenging you into living outside of your comfort zones and getting more out of life by living intentionally.  For the Love is meant to reassure the reader that while there will always be room for improvement in your life, as long as you are doing your best, sometimes that is enough. **Also, anyone who can poke fun at themselves, is ok in my book:)

4. Have two date nights each month

We went out for Mexican food this week and it was delicious!

5. Have two family game nights each month

This week we played Avengers Bingo, Crazy Eights, and Apples to Apples.  **Ben won both rounds of Bingo, Emma won Crazy Eights, and I won Apples to Apples.

6. Have one no spend week each month Accomplished

7. Add six new products to my Teachers pay Teachers store (4 out of 6 completed)

No progress so far…

8. Buy nothing new this year

Nothing new was bought this week

9.  $5 weekly challenge

kellogg cereal

This week Kroger had cereal on sale for $.99, so I picked up five to donate to the food bank.

 

 

Blessings

Blessings This Week

1. A Family of Faith Program

family of faith

I mentioned a few weeks ago that our church was trying a new Sunday School program this year called A Family of Faith.  We had our first parent’s meeting this week and were blessed to have five nuns come to kick it off (They were in full habits and everything, so that is something we do not see very often)  One of the nuns shared that her family’s religious traditions at home greatly inspired her to choose her vocation early in life and also led her brother to enter the priesthood after he graduated from college.  It is very unusual to have a nun and a priest in one family, so that was really inspiring to hear.  One of the ways families are encouraged to grow their faith at home is to have the children join in praying the rosary.  I felt that we could incorporate this into our homeschool day very easily and so far it has been going very well. **Of course Ben gets to color as we pray the rosary, but he joins in with the Hail Marys, so I am sure he is listening as well.

2. Cool Weather

While it will not last, we have had two very nice fall-ish days lately.  We turned off the air conditioning (that has been running since May!) and opened the windows to enjoy the nice cool breeze.  As Ben says, “You can just smell Fall in the air”.

3. Acting Class and Co-op

For the last few years, my daughter has attended an acting class at a local church that teaches improv and audition skills.  The best thing about the class is that it has inspired her to do community theater(which she loves!) and encourages public speaking (which we all need).  This year, she talked my son into trying it out and he loves it!  This was a great blessing for me, because I have worried about finding him an extracurricular activity that he would enjoy and have the right temperament for.  So I guess I have two little actors in the making:)

Our homeschool co-op also has started back up again for the school year, so my children were very excited to see all of their friends.  I am so thankful for these co-op classes because they are usually taught by very qualified individuals like local authors, former teachers, or other great homeschooling veterans.

**In case you are interested to know what kind of classes are usually offered at homeschool co-ops, here are the classes my kids are in:  My daughter(14 years old) will be taking Writing from Research, Drama, and Sign language.  My son(6 years old) will be taking Building with Legos, Hands on Science, and Mixed Media Art.  I usually require them to take one educational class (which they call the boring one!) and two fun electives.

 

How were you blessed this week??

 

 

Frugal Accomplishments

Five Frugal Things

1. Used science to create a new plant

plant

We have been learning about plants in my son’s science class for the past few weeks and when I stumbled across how to turn cuttings into new plants with only water and a jar, I knew that we had to try it out. **This is a Pothos plant and it is the easiest, most resilient plant out there, so if you have a black thumb, this is the plant for you.  Proof:  I forget to water it half the time and it still produces beautiful foliage year round, with no shedding!  This plant will go into my son’s room after it fully roots because he has been wanting one for ages and this one can grow alongside him.

2. Fun impulse buy = loads of laughs

hotdog

We were killing time in Target when we came across this adorable costume for our dog Sadie in the Dollar aisle for just $3.  We knew we had to have it when my son mentioned that it looked just like the costume from one of his favorite children’s books, The Hallo-wiener by Dav Pilkey.  Our dog also happens to have a little Dachshund in her, so it made it all the more hilarious. **If you have not read this book to your kids, you are missing out!  Its an adorable story of a Dachshund who is forced to wear a hotdog costume for Halloween and endures a lot of teasing for it.  Luckily, the costume helps him and his friends out of a sticky situation later in the night, so there is a happy ending after all.

3. Dollar store prizes

I grabbed a great selection of Dollar Tree toys to add to my son’s homeschool reward box, for you guessed it, just $1 each.  Our biggest score this week was finding all four of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on keychains.  My son was especially excited about these because he said that all of the cool kids had key chains on their backpacks…..I do not know where he got this information from, but at least he was happy:)

4. Car wash

We decided to wash our car at home last week and saved $6.  While it was a little messy and hot, the kids had a blast and my car is no longer covered in sap, so that was a frugal win.

5. Free homeschool resources

We are going to read Frankenstein next in Literature, so I was happy to find two free study guides online that I can adapt for us to use, instead of buying a new Progeny Press study guide for $20.  A little bit of work = a lot of savings:)

 

What did you do to save money last week??

 

 

 

 

Goals

Weekly Goal Update for Week 36

1. Walk at least 500 miles this year (345 miles down and 155 to go)

I had to work around a couple of afternoon thunderstorms, but I managed to get in all 10 miles this week.

2. Eat low carb each day

I did this for 6 out of 7 days.

3. Read two non-fiction books each month

Not yet

4. Have two family game nights each month

Not yet

5. Have two date nights each month

Not yet

6. Have one no spend week each month Accomplished

We stayed home almost every day last week, so I decided to just have my no spend week then.  **A simple, yet effective way to save money:)

7. Try to buy nothing new this year

Nothing new was bought this week, except for items found in Target’s Dollar aisle (which luckily happens to be one of my exclusions for this challenge!!!!)

8. Add six products to my Teachers pay Teachers store (4 down and 2 to go)

Still working on homeschool assignments…

9. $5 Weekly Challenge

shoes

I was walking in Target and noticed that they had a large amount of children’s shoes marked down to 70% off, so I picked up two pairs to donate to a local charity.  **Brand new pairs of shoes for $3 each is a steal nowadays, especially considering that used shoes sell for almost double that at our local thrift stores.

Goals

Weekly Goal Update for Week 35

1. Walk at least 500 miles this year (335 down and 165 to go)

I only got around to walking 8 miles last week, but I am going to try to get in a few extra miles this week to keep on track for the year.

2. Eat low carb each day

I did this every day this week!  Low carb tip:  My husband stays on track better if I have a lot of leftovers for him to choose from.  One way I do this is to cook extra meat every time I grill, which makes a quick meal possible any time of day.  I also try to make sure his favorite fat bombs are in the freezer each week to satisfy his sweet tooth and I always have backup blocks of cheese in my fridge at all times. (Cheese shortage is a serious situation in my house)

3. Read two non-fiction books each month

Not yet

4. Have two family game nights each month

Not yet

5. Have two date nights each month

Not yet

6. Have one no spend week each month

Not yet

7. Try to buy nothing new this year

I did technically buy two new items this past week, but since they were wedding presents, they do not count against me…you got to love loopholes 🙂

8. Add six new products to my Teachers pay Teachers store (4 down and 2 to go)

I have not added any new products in two months!! So I really need to get busy…

9. $5 Weekly Challenge

deodorant

This month I am buying things to donate to a local charity that provides clothing and hygiene items to school children in our county.  Apparently they were low on deodorants, so I grabbed five at Kroger while they were on sale for $.99 each.  Sometimes life works out nicely!