About Me

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I am a wife to the most amazing husband (Eric) and a mother to 2 wonderful kids (Jessica and Evan). My family is my world. I have recently put my career as a medical assistant on hold to be a stay-at-home mom/wife. We want to raise kids with manners and still have a strong family, so I am always trying ideas to help make things easier on me (cleaning tips, organization, meal planning, crafts, etc.) I thought I would share them with everyone out there. So, please comment with your ideas, or if you have tried one posted on here (Did you like it?) I am always open to suggestions. I am also looking for money savers. It's my new passion now that there is only 1 income.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Budget Basics

I have yet to come across a person who says "Oh my God, I can't wait to do the budget tonight!" With that said, we all (unless you found a money tree, and in that case, you better start sharing) need to budget. No matter how much money you bring in, you need to make sure you aren't over-spending.

Let me tell you how I first realized I needed to budget. When I got out "on my own" I thought budgeting meant calling the bank to hear the balance in my checking account before purchasing whatever it was I wanted. Needless to say, it wasn't good.

So, Here is what we do in our house. You don't have to follow it exact, but hopefully it gives you some ideas on how to create and follow your own budget plan.

The first thing we do is post a list of all "bills" and when they are due. I have this in a spreadsheet so I can easily add-on or remove a bill as life goes on. I also note if something is automatically withdrawn from our account so I don't forget to make sure the funds are there. I have overdrawn in the past from forgetting something was to come out. We keep this on our refrigerator. (If someone is going stop over, it will be removed from sight)

The other budgeting tip I have is to track yourself. About every 3 months or so, I print out our bank report for a full month. I then go through it and highlight all fast food debits in one color and all other unnecessary spending in another color. I then add the totals together. This keeps us on track as to not throw away our money. (There is a birthday gift amount blacked out in case the birthday person sees this.)

I love to hear tips and tricks other people find works for them, so feel free to comment.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Diaper Cake Motorcycle

I absolutely love making these for new moms and dads! They can be made for a boy or girl, or neutral.
Here I have posted the step-by-step instructions if you'd like to know how to make them yourself.
I also sell these for $50 each. Just let me know what specific colors you want.

50 diapers
3 washcloths
2 receiving blankets
1 package of travel wipes
1 bib
1 bottle
1 stuffed animal
tape (preferably double sided)
A little patience...

Divide your diapers. Each tire will have 25.
Then lay them overlapping.

Take a rolled washcloth and use it as your guide, and roll the diapers into the tire. This is where you will need the patience. Don't worry if they aren't all even, you can adjust them later.

Secure the tire with a rubberband, then tie your yarn tightly around the rubberband.
Remove the rubberband and repeat steps 1-3 to make the 2nd tire.

Wrap your ribbon around each tire. Use the tape to secure it. Ribbon should cover the yarn.
Set the tires aside.

Take 1 of your receiving blankets and fold it so it is narrow. Secure the ends with rubberbands. This will make them easier to pull through the middle of the tires.

Pull the blanket through 1 tire leaving a little bit of slack at one end. Then pull it through the 2nd tire as shown.

Remove the rubberbands from the ends of the blanket and wrap 1 of the rubberbands around both ends together. This will become the middle of the motorcycle.

Add the bumpers with 2 washcloths. I used tape to secure them onto the ribbon.

Fold the 2nd receiving blanket as you did the first 1 and pull it through the front tire leaving equal slack on each side.
Wrap the last washcloth around the bottle. Place bottle on the front tire and wrap the receiving blanket around the bottle.
Secure with a rubberband.
Add 1 sock to each handlebar.
Place your pack of wipes, with the bib wrapped around it, in the center of the motorcycle.

Add your animal and you are finished

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Serving Sized Snacks

I don't know why I haven't done this before, but here is a simple way to make sure you only eat 1 serving.

In order to save money, we buy bulk-sized bags of things. Well it's very tempting to sit down with the huge bag and snack away as we watch an evening show.

Take your bulk-sized item, or anything that has more than 1 serving in it, and take a single serving out, putting it in snack-sized baggies.

We found that a container filled with snack sizes on the counter makes it easy to grab and go so we have something with us if we are out and get hungry. (Lots healthier than stopping for a $1 burger) And the kids can get their own snacks. We also did this in the fridge with veggies and applesauce (applesauce was put into 1-cup containers (We used the Take-N-Toss, but I'm sure any kind will do).