Monday, December 27, 2010

Making Baby Food...Anyone else done this?

So now that Lane is eating solids 3 times a day, I REALLY need to get him to eat some veggies at least one of those meals. I have jars of Gerber green beans, sweet potatoes, squash, and carrots, but he absolutely HATED the green beans and refuses to eat anything except fruit and cereal. I want to try making my own veggie purees, and I'm hoping not only will he like those more, but that it will save me some money and be healthier for him.

Is anyone else doing this? I'm not really sure how to start, or what seasonings are ok to add. I just want my baby to eat veggies!!!

In other news, I got a sewing machine for Christmas! And a Wii Fit. And my Shark Steam Mop that I've been asking for for the last year! I have big plans for all of these, hopefully I can stick to them! I'm working on my list of New Year's Resolutions, I will be posting that sometime in the next couple of days once I get them all down.

For now, I have to get back to cleaning, I'm STILL trying to get my house back to normal since Christmas exploded all over it! 

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas is Coming...

the goose is getting fat! Sorry, that song just popped into my head as soon as I said Christmas is coming...too many years of listening to holiday music I guess! Anyway, thinking about my baby's first Christmas, and our first Christmas as a family, I'm amazed at all that has happened this year. It hasn't been easy, but we have been SO blessed.

Last Christmas, we weren't even sure I would be able to carry Lane long enough for him to survive. We were afraid to let ourselves believe we really were going to have this baby. But thanks to a lot of prayer, and a lot of bedrest, I made it to 37 weeks. And thanks to even more prayers, we were able to bring him home after a week in the NICU.

Last Christmas, we were both unemployed and wondering how on earth we were going to take care of a baby when we couldn't even support ourselves. Once again, thanks to a lot of prayer, Rian got a job a week before Lane was born, and we moved to Vegas.

I was so scared of moving here. I've never lived more than 2 hours away from home, and here I was moving to a completely different state. But now I couldn't imagine living anywhere else. This is home now, and I have made some amazing friends in the last few months who have made this feel like home.

My faith hasn't always been what it should the last few years, but looking back on all that we have gone through this year, and the miracles we have witnessed, I have no doubt that God is working in our lives in a powerful way.

I'm thinking I'm of starting the book The Power of a Praying Wife for my morning Bible time.... anyone out there want to go through it with me?

Monday, December 20, 2010

Sick baby and convincing husband Dave Ramsey is right

This week(well week and a half really) has been exhausting to say the least. Even though Lane was only 3 weeks early, it seems like his immune system is more like that of babies who were much more premature. He's only 6 months old and we're on our 3 cold, he's also had whooping cough, a double ear infection, staph infection, a stomach bug, and a bacterial infection that came on with the stomach bug 3 weeks ago that we are still trying to get rid of. I feel so bad for my little man!

So for the last couple months, we've been trying to follow Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover, but I have had to modify it a little because my husband is still holding on to the idea that debt is a fact of life and having a huge emergency fund is much more important. Since I am staying at home for now, we have had to cut pretty much ALL extras out of our budget until we can move to a cheaper house. He's been really upset that we can't go out on a date if we want or buy Christmas presents for everyone(since we weren't expecting me to be staying home already, we had been counting on my paycheck for Christmas). I think I finally was able to get him to see that while it isn't much fun making these sacrifices right now, in a few years, we will be debt free and have an emergency fund, and THEN we will have the "blow" money to  be able to go out on dates and things like that.

If you don't already know about Dave Ramsey and his Total Money Makeover book, or his Financial Peace University, seriously, check him out  NOW! We are just starting out, but I know several people who have made it through his plan and it is so worth it!

I didn't get to our grocery shopping over the weekend, so now I have to brave WalMart this morning, not looking forward to that! If I didn't have a gift card, I would be skipping WalMart and going to a grocery store, but that gift card is going to cut my bill for this 2 weeks in half, so I guess it's worth dealing with the Christmas crazies! I'm going to try to get over there early on this morning, so maybe it won't be too horrible, but I'm not holding out much hope!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Frugal Friday: I tried Menu Planning!

Sorry I am a little(ok, a LOT) later in the day getting this posted, my Little Man is not feeling so hot today so he's needed a lot of cuddle time!

When it became clear that we were going to be a one-income family for at least the next several months, I realized that our grocery budget was not only out of control, it was non-existent. I had never even made a grocery list before, at least not a well thought out one. Everywhere I looked, the advice was the same: MENU PLAN! So I decided to give it a shot.

I searched online for several templates to help me get started, but all of them seemed extremely complicated. Finally I found this one for Excel, and it is SO easy. I spent maybe 30 minutes planning 2 weeks worth of meals, and then another 30 minutes clipping coupons.

I was still a little skeptical at how much I could REALLY save by doing this. But we are on our third week now, and I have managed to cut our grocery budget down to $30 a week! And that's not even the best part. There's no more staring in to the fridge and complaining about there being "nothing to eat". Now that I am planning, there's always HEALTHY snacks, and always something for dinner. We've gone out for fast food once in the last 3 weeks, and that was only because we had a buy one, get one free coupon for Chipotle(my weakness!). Before, we would end up in the drive-thru 2 or 3 nights a week.

I think out of all of the changes we have made in the last 3 weeks, this one has had the most impact by far. If you aren't already, I highly recommend you give this a chance!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Crazy Week...Holiday Photos done!

I HATE weeks where I just feel like nothing is going as planned and I'm too busy to even breathe...and this has definately been one of those weeks. We went to California last weekend to see hubby's family, and while we were there, had one of my AMAZING photographer friends take our family pics....If it weren't for him, we wouldn't have wedding photos, newborn photos of Little Man, or holiday photos. I just got the photos last night, and they definately make the trip worth it! A few of my favorites:

We are so blessed to have such a talented friend. If you happen to be in the LA or Bakersfield areas, PLEASE check him out! His Facebook page is Inspired Photography by Adam Arriola.

Now to create our Christmas Cards, and I am so thankful to Crystal over at Money Saving Mom for sharing this awesome deal! Through December 12th, at SeeHere you can get 60 photo cards(which is plenty for us!) for only $4.90 shipped! How to do it:
  • Create an account here 
  • Create a single-sided 4x8 photo card and save it to your account
  • Add 60 cards to your cart(You MUST add 60 cards or the price will not be $4.90)
  • Use coupon code 50cards at checkout and your total will be $4.90!! 
I don't know about you, but I think that is the one of the best deals I've ever seen for photo cards!

Come back tomorrow for Frugal Friday, I'll be sharing my menu-planning success and grocery deals of the week! 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Starting Out

Well, due to some circumstances beyond our control, it looks like I'm back to being a stay at home mom for awhile! While this was our ultimate goal, we were planning on this happening when Little Man was around 18 months old, not 6 months, we are NOT prepared! But I am determined now to make this work, even if it means a LOT of sacrifices for awhile. I LOVE being home with my baby, and taking care of our house.

I'm hoping that as I figure things out, I can share this with everyone, and maybe help another family make this work too, I know how overwhelming it can seem, and how it feels to not even know where to start.

So, welcome to my blog, hope you enjoy our adventures!