Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Mom's Night Out

When my kids were school aged, we homeschooled them and as time went on we hooked up with a Catholic homeschool group (at the time we were Protestants)and to make a long story short (but maybe more on the blog at a different time), I became interested in the Catholic faith and here I am, a very happy Mass going, rosary carrying, statue of Mary in my yard Catholic for 8 years now! Well, even though I have an empty nest again, I still stay in contact with my homeschool group. So tonight we had Mom's Night Out and had a great time. I wasn't the only Alumni, there were a few other Nanas in attendance. Some are both Nanas and still homeschooling younger children. There were a few ladies joining us that I had never met, but a little sangria makes fast friends. One it turns out, goes to my Parish and attends the same Mass I do. It is always nice to get together with these ladies. As I was listening to some of the homeschooling/kid raising stories, I stradled the fence of sometimes wishing I could go back in time to do all my child raising again and of YAY! I am an emptynester! Is that bad? I guess it is the fact that raising children is a LOT harder than smothering the grands with kisses and handing them back to their Mommy. What is that saying? "If I knew grandkids were this much fun, I would have had them first?" Yeah, that is it!

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   N a n a!


Monday, August 29, 2011

Lipstick Update!!

Remember me telling of the awesome lipstick that stays on overnight? It is Revlon's Colorstay Overtime! Well- I may have looked a bit like Dracula in the morning, considering my lily white skin and no other make-up (I just got out of bed, give me a break!) or perhaps I looked like I was going "goth", but my friends, YES- it stayed on overnight. As I sit and write this- my lips are colored and I put the stuff on at 8:30am. Here is the deal- one end of the tube is the color- you paint that on (get in the lines, girls or it will look like the kindergarten version of yourself did your lips- All day- you don't want that) then the other end is a clear gloss. The gloss wears off, but this is the only thing you reapply, perhaps for 3 or 4 days? I don't know- I scrubbed it off the 2nd day I tried it to try another lighter color (it didn't seem to work as well, but that might be my fault- you have to let the stain part (colored end) dry before the gloss goes on). So this time, I will not scrub it or change it, just to see what happens. I also thought it might be a little dark for me- as I have been just wearing light gloss, but I took a vote at work and I guess it works for me. I like it a lot and it doesn't come off on your cigarettes (I don't know that by personal experience, but was told) and it doesn't come off on your coffee cup which I know to be fact and is a really nice feature! I would take a picture, but I am sitting here in my jammies and it isn't a pretty sight- well, except for maybe my lips!!!

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Trash Treasure! AKA Trash Digging!

I am not above digging through the garbage when I see a nearly new (FREE) Pampered
Chef stoneware casserole dish sticking out! You know how much those babies are, right?? I love FREE! "If it is free it is for me!" is my motto! No, it wasn't icky garbage- I am not a martyr! It was "we just moved out and didn't take this with us" garbage (and a lot of it, I might add) left at the house my son is moving into with his cousins. (Yes, I am an emptynester once again.) I also scored 2 boxes of free Advil today- I used an expired coupon without realizing it, but the manager let me use it! (I should bake that sweetie some cookies!) I got a whole .02 overage, but I will take it!! So, not a bad day! Some good coupons this week, people!!!

Warning: this picture was taken from my phone! Don't ask me how I figured out how to get it here, but techno geeks like me, can figure it out, but can't explain it to anyone else! Go, me!

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   N a n a!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Awesome Couponing!

My sister, Tammy was in town, so it was a given that we would do two things. 1) Thrift store shopping and 2)Publix and/or CVS shopping- sooo we did all of the above! At the thrift stores she was looking for some household and other stuff for her boys' house. (As it turns out, it is my boy's house too- they are going to rent it together- that will be some good fodder for other posts). Anyhoo, I didn't need a thing at the thrift stores, but I did find a cute Halloween sign and a lid for a pyrex dish that I have been looking for. Tammy is the CVS diva and turned me on to this lipstick that she swears stays on even overnight, as it so happens, it had the CVS extra bucks too, so on sale, $1 off coupon and $5 extra bucks AND it stays on all day and apparently all night too? Gotta try it. So I did the first deal, and bought a 2nd tube with the $5 ECBs and another $1 off coupon and low and behold, I got another $5 ECB which was a surprise- don't know how that happened, but I don't question these things to the authorities! I also bought hubs Buy 2 get one free candy bars. On to the next conquest at the neighboring Publix. I did soooo good! I bought 4 boxes of Advil, 2 loaves of bread, 6 soft scrub cleansers, a container of yogurt, half a gallon of milk- I had a grand total of $28 in coupons and had just $8.61 out of pocket. I was so happy! It is the little things in life. After we got everything all unloaded, my son says, "Mom, we want in". Meaning he and his cousins want to learn the couponing life!!! (He has been the happy recipient of many a bottle of laundry detergent, body wash and toothbrush!) It is so awesome when our kids "get it". (Little Mama and Mrs. D (daughters) already are on the coupon wagon! My son told me tonight- "look at all the people you helped get started on couponing!" Well, I am not an extreme couponer, per se,(maybe to some people) but I hold my own and have a couple of good stash areas full of half price to free items! I forgot to mention that before my sister came over, I went to the mall and cashed in on some other freebies. It was a good day!! I will let you know if the lipstick stayed on overnight!!!

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   N a n a!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Scrappin' the Day Away!

My daughter and I decided to scrapbook yesterday and today, so of course, I had to take a few pictures! We haven't scrapbooked in quite awhile! I have done a few pages on my own, but I am waaay behind!

How behind am I ? You ask? Well this is JR and he is almost 3! This is a book on his first year.

This was Little Mama's baby shower pic! (Note the nifty baby rattle- made that embellishment myself! have circle punch, will travel!)

This is how I roll... I make a HUGE mess scrapbooking!

Hopefully, we will keep up this scrapbooking tradition!

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Spinach Smoothie?

Yes, SPINACH smoothie! I was skeptical at first too, but when my daughter,Little Mama, went on and on about how good they are, I decided - what the heck. So, crazily enough, I decided to go ahead take pictures! Who knew? Such a nifty subject, really. This is a real easy way to display ingredients! That is it- banana, spinach, yogurt, honey and a few ice cubes! (In the future, I will use plain yogurt and whole strawberries, but this is what I had on hand today.)

Toss it all on top of the ice cubes

Buzz it up and here ya go! Sooo icky looking!

Poured it in a cup and  in the words of Rachael Ray- "yummo"!

I just felt so healthy and green while sipping on this! What a great way to get veggies in! (Weight Watchers will love this one only 3-4 points depending on how much yogurt you use.)

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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

It's about time, Nana!

It has been a long time since I have done a new Tablescape! The old one was getting dusty and now that I have found PICASA- I no longer have a hard time loading up pictures! Yay!! It is the little things in life that get us revved up, huh? Well, I strayed from my comfy Johnson Brothers Ironstone and brought out the blue flowered Haviland set, only to realize, that I must have broken a cup- and of course it was after most of the table was already set, so I snuck in a replacement- I tried to position my camera, so as not to notice it, so here goes. Also, I really should have cleaned the silver, but in most pictures, you really can't tell too much. Blue is my fav color, so I really love this set and I surely scarfed up the blue runner at a thrift store!

I was happy to find the blue candles in my stash!

and my kinda new "tradition" of  the black and white, thanks to the nifty setting on my camera!

I am so glad the table gets some use- we never sit at it for meals- the chairs aren't very comfy- I love the glass top though!

I even ironed the napkins- boy, what a mess they were in my drawer! My sister, Tammy, the Ironing Queen (ooh, that is a good blog name for her!!!) would be so proud!

The setting.

I have been working on my blog- did you notice the bottom right hand corner of my pics? Pretty cool, huh?

I want to apologize to my Tablescaping friends for not being a little better at getting out there and looking at your tables more often. I really enjoy doing that! Some really nice tables out there!

As always, a big thank you to Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for hosting Tablescape Thursday! I have been blessed to be a participant since the Fall of 2009. Wow! Time has gone by so fast!

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Much love,

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011


I have always used coupons to some degree and in the last 8 months took the couponing to the next level. NOT the Extreme level, just maybe extreme compared to the majority of the nation. Yes, I did take a couponing class back in February with a local blogger/couponer- Addicted to Saving. It was very informational. I had already set up my coupon binder and was buying a few extra newspapers. Then along comes that show on TLC.  I am not sure that showed couponers in a positive light. I get stopped quite often by other shoppers wondering about couponing. I know most people don't coupon or they wouldn't be so miffed when they are standing behind me in line.

My main objective is to get my groceries for a least half off. I have had several good deals. Just this past weekend I got 4 bottles of Resolve for free with a .60 overage (store credit). The bottles were BOGO at Publix and they all had a .65 off coupon. Today, I bought 3 bottles of Air Wick refill sprays- they were on sale for almost half off and I had a Buy 2 get one free paired with 2 $1 off , making them $2 each, not including the $5 off my $30 purchase.

The deals are out there, it just takes some time to get it all organized, but the savings are worth it

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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Crockpot Lasagna

First off, let me tell you that I cannot, and will not live without my crockpot. That is the single most used secondary appliance in my kitchen- secondary meaning not the frig or oven and I guess the coffee pot, you get my drift- it is a marvel nonetheless. I am fascinated with Crockpot recipes and I ran across "Crockpot Lasagna". What about that name isn't wonderful? Had to try it and it was great, so today I made it again. I make Sunday meals in the crockpot a lot. Today, I was even crazy enough to take some pictures! Surprise, Surprise!!

I made the ricotta mixture and the sauce. I am a Weight Watcher, so I have been making my lasagna with 1/2 skim ricotta and 1/2 whole milk- (next time I am going to do all skim. I don't think it will matter) I add an egg to the ricotta mix along with some Italian seasoning. The sauce was 2 and 1/2 cans (15 oz) tomato sauce and one can (15 oz) of drained diced tomatoes, I mixed in a little (4 oz?) cooked ground hamburger.. Then I add a LOT of granulated garlic and a lot of Italian seasoning, some minced dry onion and some salt.(I don't think the rest of the 3rd can of tomato sauce would be bad) Easy, peesy, lemon squeezy- (Note-you can probably do a jar or can of spaghetti sauce instead of the tomato mix if that is what you have/or usually use.)

Then you start layering- see how you have to break the lasagna noodles (don't cook them first!).

I used 1/2 fat free and 1/2 regular mozzarella too. ( You CAN'T tell the difference)

More layering.

Spread the ricotta.

The mozzarella.

I just used the Publix brand- the small containers and the Lasagna too.

 Finished. (you can tell this poor Crock gets a lot of use!!! I bought it at Wal-mart last Christmas season for $10 and it has been a great one!)

I sprinkle a little more seasoning on top for looks.

Cover and let cook on high for 2 hours. I turned mine on warm after 2 hours until we ate which was a couple of hours and it was fine-the bottom edge got a little dark, so just be careful- the noodles taste like homemade.

 The picture doesn't do it justice without the smell!!

We ended up having enough for 2 other meals- there is just the 3 of us, so I figure this lasagna would feed 8-10 people. but it goes together so easy, you could do 2 crockpots if you had company or wanted to put some in the freezer.

Give it a try! It is great not to have to heat up your kitchen!

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