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2015-03-04 11.47.00This picture is the end to a not-so-great morning. You know the saying that says, “There’s no use in crying over spilled milk”? Well, how about spilled milk, cereal, smeared poop, and an egg? Yes, that summed up my morning.

Everything seemed to go wrong this morning. I slept terrible, so I ended up miserably laying in my bed until I had overslept. I knew I had missed my “me” time this morning as the kids would surely be awake. I scrambled to their rooms only to find both fast asleep still. I thought, “Well, maybe this morning won’t be so bad?” I made my eggs and coffee and sat down to a nice, quiet breakfast.

Next thing I know, my oldest child (almost 3) was standing at the edge of his room with no pants on. “Where are your pants?” I yell. He answered in his foreign 2-year-old language. As I near him I smell poop radiating out of his room. I look only to find his pull-ups laying on the floor and poop smeared from floor to bed. His humidifier (he’s had an ear infection and a cold) had leaked down the side of his dresser and the floor was covered in a smattering of poop and water. I wipe him down and throw him in the tub.

My 8 month old daughter is screaming from her room. I dress my 2 year old and make a bee-line for the kitchen. I fill up a cup of cereal and hand it to him. He misses the hand off and the cereal lands in the kitchen floor. I tell him to pick it up while I fill his milk cup and make my daughter’s bottle. At this point the stress is setting in. I run to my daughter’s room and dress her.

My son comes running in screaming to wipe off his pants. No idea what the liquid is on his pants I do a quick clean up with a wipe and go to the couch to give my daughter her bottle. I look at our ottoman and see a pool of milk running from my toddler’s sippy cup. I follow the trail of milk all the way back to the kitchen. My son tips the cup up only to dump milk all over himself (ahh, the mystery of the strange liquid). I yell for him to stop drinking. He obviously knows I have an attitude as he looks at me and says, “Don’t yell mommy!” Well, that’s my first eye-opener when my almost 3 year old corrects my attitude.

I come to the kitchen to make them an egg. As I go to crack the egg, the whole thing breaks open and plops in the floor. At that moment, I almost cried, but I turned around to find both of my children staring at me with a look of “What is she going to do now.” Instead of crying, I suddenly let out an uncontrollable laugh. Both of my kids smile back and start laughing too. I could have cried, but that laugh changed the whole tone of the morning. My attitude suddenly changed and we all enjoyed the rest of what was left of the morning.

That egg may have been the end to a not-so-great morning, but it was the start of a much better attitude and better day. Instead of letting it “break” my day, I let it “break” my attitude. It really reminded me that attitude really does make such a difference no matter how horrible your day seems to be going. Hey everyone, join me in a hearty laugh this morning, it may just change the direction of your day.

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2015-02-25 15.17.16I have never really been that great at baking mainly because it takes too long and I don’t have the patience. I decided to give bread making a try a few weeks ago with a recipe that I found online and my loaf turned out looking horrific (although tasted okay). I’m just not very good at following instructions as I always feel it would be faster if I just “eyed” the ingredients (never a great idea for baking.) So on a whim one night, I decided to make my own recipe by just throwing together a bunch of ingredients from my baking supplies. And what do you know, it turned out great! However, I had no recipe as I just dumped ingredients together without measuring a thing. After several more times of dumping stuff together, I decided to try measuring it. So without further ado, here is my homemade “Dump” Honey Wheat Bread recipe (as I like to call it)…

 

Ingredients:

1/8 cup Wheat Bran

1/4 cup Oat Bran

1 cup warm water

1/2 cup Olive Oil

1/16- 1/8 cup Flax Seed

2 Tablespoons Honey

1 1/2- 2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar

1 Teaspoon Salt

2 1/2 Teaspoons of Dry Yeast

2 cups Whole-Wheat Flour + 1 cup Whole Wheat Flour (to be added later)

 

Directions:

Put all the ingredients in a mixing bowl except for the additional 1 cup of Whole Wheat flour.

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Turn on the mixer (with a kneading attachment) and allow the ingredients to mix. While mixing, slowly add in the last cup of whole wheat flour until the dough turns away from the bowl (no longer sticks to the sides) and allow to continue to knead for a minimum of 10 minutes.

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Once done, put the dough in a greased loaf pan, cover, and allow to rise for 30-45 minutes. Finally, bake the bread for 30 minutes (or until done) at 350 degrees.

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This is just a picture for fun! My 2-year-old was attempting to hep me make the bread. So sweet!

Plus, be sure to read my article here on how I got my ingredients for less with Vitacost.

 

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2015-02-25 15.17.16Ok, so as many of you may know by now, one of my “resolutions” was to get healthier this year. I started making my own bread, muffins, etc.  this month. I have to say I’ve been pleasantly surprised as baking isn’t generally my forte. I was surprised that it turned out looking anything like the desired recipe to tell the truth. (The first loaf of bread wasn’t as fortunate as my husband wasn’t even real sure what it was.) I plan to share my recipes once I can actually get precise measurements on what I’ve been using.

But for right now, I just wanted to share how I got my first stash of ingredients for a decent deal. I used Vitacost and saved $10 off my first order. Since I wasn’t real sure how much I needed, I split the order with my mother to make it a little more costs friendly while still scoring FREE shipping over $50. The quality seemed excellent and it shipped very quickly. If you are interested in getting various health foods at a lower costs, click here and check out Vitacost to get $10 off your first order.

Also, check out one of my favorite recipes for cinnamon swirl bread here.

Let me know in the comments below if you have a good way to save on these foods as well.

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2015-02-18 10.05.05

I have two little ones, 8 months and almost 3 years old, and it is amazing to me how quickly they outgrow clothing. I hate to spend tons of money on clothes I know they will outgrow in just a couple of months, so I started looking for ways to keep my children clothed nicely while not breaking the bank. I discovered several tips that I would like to pass on to you.

 

  1. About a year or so ago, I discovered ShopYourWay points through Sears and Kmart. I started receiving surprise points for just signing up. These points are worth a certain amount of money through Sears or Kmart and many of them have no spending limit (some come attached with a spending limit). I would use the amount I received to buy my children’s clothes (or other household necessities). I have gotten to where I hardly have to spend any money to purchase my children’s clothes, and they stay nicely dressed throughout the year. If you are interested in signing up for ShopYourWay points, go here and sign up for me to be your Personal Shopper. In the near future, I plan to do a post on how to earn even more points with ShopYourWay, so be sure to follow me by email, Facebook or Twitter to learn more.
  2. I use gift cards throughout the year earned from various apps that I talk about on Thriving on Thrifty to pay for their clothes and other necessities.
  3. I shop clearance racks at the end of the season to buy for the next year. I plan to write a post in the near future on how to find clearance clothing throughout various stores.
  4.  I have never been a huge fan of consignment shops for the sheer fact that many times I felt I could save more with other methods. However, here recently online consignment shops have been offering great deals to sign up for their site. I have been able to score several “gently used” items for FREE. I have used sites such as Thredup, who is currently offering a $10 credit when you sign up here. Plus, once you sign up, you can refer people and earn $10 credits as well. Head over here for more information.
  5. Ask for clothes for their birthdays and Christmas instead of more toys.

 

If you have any other strategies for saving on kid’s clothing, comment below.

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In a new attempt to get healthier this year, I have a new addiction to making my own bread. While I’m not very good at it yet, I have started making some different varieties. MoneySavingMom has an awesome Cinnamon Swirl Bread recipe on her blog. It tastes so good. To make it a slight bit healthier, I used all whole wheat flour instead of using part whole wheat and part all purpose flour. Mine turned out pretty good. I did learn that whole wheat flour tends to absorb more moisture, so I didn’t need as much whole wheat in place of the all purpose flour. Be sure to check out the recipe on MoneySavingMom’s blog here.

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pot pieI absolutely love this Chicken Pot Pie Recipe that I found over at This Mom’s Heart. Head over here to get the recipe. It is so easy and quick to make whether you are freezer cooking or just looking for something quick to make tonight. It has quickly become a favorite in my house.

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Sorry that I was unable to update yesterday, but honestly I have not been doing so well with the challenges the past few days. I have been more busy than usual but hate to use that as an excuse. My hope is to catch up on the “extra” challenges of cleaning out the freezer and cleaning out underneath the beds and sofas this weekend. I have, however, continued to keep up with my morning routine and completed all 5 of my goals for this week. I hope you all are having success with the challenge and hope to hear from some of you in the comments below.

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If you are following along the with the 4 Weeks to A More Organized Home Challenge, then here is my update for how Day #2 went for me.

Two of the big challenges for me was getting the refrigerator cleaned out and getting rid of 7 items.

  • Getting the refrigerator cleaned out: Again, for some reason I seem to be running a day behind on these “extra” challenges so I didn’t get it done until this morning. To be honest, I thought about just skipping it and then I took a look at my refrigerator. Wow! So much stuff and it needed a good wipe down. After throwing out about a fifth of the stuff in my refrigerator and cleaning it up a bit, my refrigerator looks better than it has in a long time. While it seemed so much easier to just skip this challenge, I am so happy I pushed myself to get in there and get it done (even if it was a day late).

 

  • Get rid of 7 items: I have been loving this part of the daily challenges. It’s amazing the amount of stuff just sitting around that needs to be thrown away or given away. So far, between day 1 and day 2, I think I counted a total of 13 items. I guess I’m one item short, but I’m still excited about my success so far. I can already see my house looking straighter just with those few items gone.

 

How did Day 2 go for you? Please leave your progress in the comments section below.

 

Check out previous post in this series:

Day 1: Getting More Organized with “4 Weeks to A More Organized Home Challenge”

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