Truthful Thursdays!

Truthful Thursdays

I am going to start a series here on the blog called “Truthful Thursdays” where I will share the good, the bad, and the ugly about Motherhood & Stepmotherhood.

My Truths for Today! ๐Ÿ™‚

  1. I will have to shower with Ezra-in the bathroom some days if I want a shower!
  2. There will always be something to sweep up after every meal! EVERY MEAL! EVEN CEREAL!
  3. The conditioner will always run out before the shampoo!
  4. If I fill the hand soap bottle up by the next day it will turn to water-magically!
  5. Somedays will be accident days….all…day…long.
  6. Left overs are my favorite meals to serve! Sometimes I make extras to ensure there will be a left over day. ๐Ÿ™‚
  7. The BEST part of the day is the end because I actually get some calm-cuddly time with the kids. & Sometime with the Hubby. ๐Ÿ™‚
  8. Frustration will set in-it will! You have to make time to let it out! Not on the children or hubby either! I have to remind myself to make me time by watching a t.v. show (Currently hooked on Days of Our Lives-Thanks Mom), exercising, or reading a magazine, and even baking while they play with something that keeps there attention (Goop/Gack, Play Dough, or Cutting & Pasting) I even let them watch a movie in the other room or play a video game on a THURSDAY!

By Thursday I am ready for the weekend! & I have to remind myself of my goals. HAPPY, HEALTHY KIDS! & If it isn’t contributing to my goals it isn’t really that important! ๐Ÿ™‚

Ezra's Smile

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Why I always enter a quick giveaway!

Girls-Gator Mommy Reviews

The saying goes you can’t win if you don’t play! &ย It’s TRUE! I started entering giveaways as a way to win things my family couldn’t afford. The first thing I ever won was a baby monitor! A really-really cool high-tech baby monitor, I could only dream about owning! I WON IT! Ever since then I have been hooked! By hooked I mean addicted! I enter giveaways on Facebook pages, Blogs, and from companies. There are so many different blogs out there about crafting, cooking, baking, homeschooling, and being a Mom-all these blogs usually have giveaways! I will too-soon, but until then here are some places you can go to win things for your family!

Some of the blogs I follow are:

Here are some Facebook & Companies Pages:

Happy Winning! ๐Ÿ™‚

How I stretch a buck!

Stretch a Buck!

Today I wanted to talk about ways I stretch a dollar. Having such a big family and living with one income I really have learned some tricks of the trade in saving money.

  1. Coupons! I use Coupons.comย to get my printable coupons. Then I also useย Freecouponalerts.comย to get the best updates on available coupons.
  2. Target! I love Target for SO many reason! Clearance! ย Target Mobile Coupons! Daily Deals! Printable Target Coupons!ย Shopkick App! & Now Cartwheel! I can’t possibility configure all the savings possibilities myself so I useย Totally Targetย to help with match ups!
    • If you sign up for mobile coupons from Target you will not be disappointed! I use at least one a week! You just click the link in the text to see what is available and have the cashier scan the barcode on your phone!
    • Daily Deals are really great deals on items Target only offers on that day. I have got a few great deals but they go quickly.
    • I am a Target printable coupon hoarder! I print these every Sunday! These Target coupons can be used with a manufacture coupon for double savings.
    • The Shopkick App I mainly use at Target because I get points for walking into their store and scanning items (if I have time) then I can use those points to get Target gift cards. The gift cards are on the app and the cashier scans the phone the same as a mobile coupon.
    • I am fairly new to Target Cartwheel but my understanding so far is that you go online to the Cartwheel site or you can use theย Appย toย sign up. Then add the deals you want to use. Right now I am allowed to add 15 different deals and they offer a bunch! (I though the more you use the service the more you can add). Then when in the store load the site/App on your phone and the cashier just scans this one too!
  3. Ibotta! I use the Ibotta App to earn money on the things I buy which I deposit into my pay pal account! I LOVE IT! Its so easy you open the app and take a picture of your receipt, then scan the barcodes of the items you purchased and upload. It usually takes a few minutes but you will get a notification back on how much you earned. I have used the money I earned to make myself a calendar and a picture panel from Walgreens.
  4. Frys! I loveย Fry’sย because they round up all my coupons to a dollar. They have great sale prices and offer additional saving with their member cards by allowing me to go online and add coupons to my card. Plus the card allows me to earn a gas discount depending on how much I spend.
  5. BestMark! BestMarkย is the other way I save a little money by doing mystery shops. I usually do oil changes and they reimburse me for the oil change then pay me for doing it. I do have to fill out a survey about my experience at the dealership but it seriously takes no more than 10 minutes.

Lastly in order to really truly save in my house I have to STOCK UP on an item when it is on sale/clearance so I never have to pay full price for it. Also I always shop for the younger kids clothes out of season when they are on clearance. So right now I am stocking up on summer clothes for next ย year.

Happy Savings! ๐Ÿ™‚

Walgreens Calendar

Walgreens Pic

Thunder Cake

Julie Thunder Cake

Julie brought this recipe home from school and told us all about the book. The girls were so excited to make this cake! I let Julie take the lead and she did a great job. She is so proud of her Thunder Cake! The girls really enjoyed watching Julie make the cake, and she even let them lick the bowl. This was a perfect cake for the weather we have been having this past month! It is monsoon season here in Arizona-and believe it or not it has rained just as much or more than it did in Oregon. It was even a rain-day on the kids first day of school because the buses could not get through all the mud. They really enjoyed that! ๐Ÿ™‚ ย Here is the recipe hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Here is the Recipe:

Thunder Cake

1 cup shortening
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 eggs, separated
1 cup cold water
1/3 cup tomato puree
2 1/2 cups cake flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350ยฐF.
Grease and flour two 8 1/2 inch cake pans.
Cream together the shortening and sugar.
Beat in the vanilla and egg yolks.
Mix in the cold water and pureed tomatoes.
Beat the egg whites until they are stiff and fold into egg/tomato mixture.
Sift the cake flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt.
Mix dry mixture into wet.
Pour batter evenly into cake pans.
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes.
Let cakes cool on wire racks before frosting with chocolate buttercream icing.
Optional: Top with fresh strawberries.

Thank you Dream Jam World for this great video!
Read more of the recipe: <a href=”http://www.food.com/recipe/patricia-polaccos-thunder-cake-171669?oc=linkback”>http://www.food.com/recipe/patricia-polaccos-thunder-cake-171669?oc=linkback</a&gt;

My Family

2013 Samsung II 1718

Today I decided to introduce you to the family. I am holding Caydence (oh and Ezra because I am pregnant ๐Ÿ™‚ ), Rey is holding Sadie, Reyrey is standing next to me and Julie next to Dad. Now this is a great family picture, but what you don’t see is that Caydence is so scared she is seriously pinching my back and ReyRey’s shoes don’t match. Not to mention the little argument over the cost of these pictures and our membership. ๐Ÿ˜‰ (Mom did get a good deal though) ย My point is pictures can look perfect but its only an image in time and nothing is actually perfect. For our family I have tried to make taking pictures a real part of my job as a mother. I feel like when I am older this is all I will have of them. They will grow up and move on and all I will be left with is the memories and the pictures. I did a great job in the beginning! As time went on I let the picture taking go. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I have noticed that is how it goes with many mothers the more kids the less pictures it seems. I even had dreams of making them their own personal yearbooks each year for their birthdays-that didn’t workout. I did at least make each of them one though! Just the other night at bedtime they each wanted to read their own books. It was really cute they each felt so special to have their own. We looked back at all the memories we had forgotten and remembered of our time in Las Cruces and Santa Fe. We even stumbled upon something in Reyrey and Julie’s books there were no pictures of Caydence or Ezra. The kids noticed this and it was really the first time we have ever discussed it. Back then it was really different compared to now. It was a good discussion to have because in our house attention from Mom is a big issue we will get to in another posts! ๐Ÿ™‚

ย So I have another question what are some of the ways you try to preserve the memories of your children and family?

Quote

“Train up a chi…

“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6

I came across this quote in a daily email and it really struck a cord with me, one because I agree, possibly almost live by this statement, and two because what happens when you train a child in something they need to depart from and cannot. I feel that when you have children or care for children whom come into your life via stepmotherhood, you are really raising slightly different versions of yourself because they will develop your habits, your language, and inherit some of your flaws. ๐Ÿ™‚ We all pass along something. In our family there is a really bad habit of invading other peoples space when your not welcomed or invited to. For example our 10 year old, son will just pick up our 4 year old, daughter most of the time she will be screaming for him to leave her alone but sometimes she will go into wrestler mode then they will both be just having it out on the floor. He was really raised rather roughly by Dad. Its hard for me to help my 10 year old understand this is not okay because this is what Dad still does with him till this day.ย A sort of domino effect is unfolding before my eyes: Dad was rough with him, now he is rough with the younger ones. I need to turn this around now! Any good ideas about reinforcing personal space and changing habits will be greatly appreciated.ย What bad habits, good habits, or language/slang have you passed along? How do you try to change or alter the bad habits into good ones?

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