Thursday, April 14, 2011

Riding the wave of Extreme Couponing

When I was a newlywed, I had an aunt who showed me how to coupon.  What a priceless gift she taught me! I have been a big fan of couponing ever since and now continue in her tradition by teaching others how to use coupons. 
In the past two years, it has become trendy to ride the "wave" of couponing.  There are notebooks, coupon binders and many other accessories you can buy to look "fashionable" at the grocery store. We've come a long way from  the shoe box and old photo album that I used to use to hold my coupons!  There are many blogs and websites that deal solely with coupons and matching up sales with coupons. I am so grateful for these people who put in so many hours and post this information for us to use for free!  They have helped significantly decrease the amount of time I spend preparing to go grocery shopping, and increase my savings at the check-out lane.  It has been so exciting to see my children get involved in this, too, and I love it when they call or text to say "guess how much I spent on $100 worth of groceries?" and the answer is $30!  Way to go!  Here's a picture of one of my shopping trips around Thanksgiving that shows a great example of that type of shopping trip:

With the increased couponing activity and media coverage, it was inevitable that television would get involved.  Along came the reality show "Extreme Couponing."  I haven't been able to watch the show yet, but from what I've heard, it is a typical "reality show" - not truly depicting reality.  Keep in mind that part of the title of the show is "extreme" - the people who are featured on the show do not shop that way every time they go to the grocery store.  Also, most couponers are not hoarders.  They stock up enough for their family but also share their savings with their friends and family, and with  food pantries, homeless shelters and other outreach ministries.

Here is a link to one of my favorite couponing sites (  Today they had a guest blogger submit a great article about what they don't show on the reality show.  I couldn't agree more!

Extreme Couponing -what they don't show or tell you

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Mom’s Lego Table -

I have GOT to make one of these before I have grandchildren! I'm already getting a nice collection of Legos from having Bryson around...

Ruffle Shirt Refashion

Here's my first posted shirt refashion! Quick and easy.  I wanted a comfortable, casual shirt to wear to a missions fair where I was respresenting Wonderzone.  I wanted a blue shirt that matched the blue on the Wonderzone bookmarks and surprisingly found one that matched perfectly at Goodwill for $3.75. 

Shirt before:

Since I have never sewn on a stretchy knit fabric before, and my time was limited, I decided to use "Heat 'n Bond" to attach the ribbon to my shirt.  I have a ribbon fetish and just happened to have some ribbon that matched perfectly, too!

Shirt after:

I received lots of compliments on this shirt. Everyone said it was the ribbon that made the shirt special.  I guess this could be considered an "anthropology knock-off" shirt!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Does life sometimes feel like a whirlpool, twirling in a circle and then disappearing into the abyss? 

The definition of a whirlpool is "a swirling body of water usually produced by ocean."  What a great comparison to life!  The chaos in our lives is produced by the tides of life - the ebb and flow of everything that surrounds us.

That circle that disappears into the abyss?  The proper name for that is "Vortex." That word has a negative connotation for me.  The Vortex is the name of a roller coaster my oldest daughter rode over 50 times one day when she was making a commercial for Carowinds.  Just watching her ride the Vortex made me nauseated! 

Sometimes it seems as if life hits you full force, like an unexpected bad storm with hurricane-strength winds. Unlike a bad storm where time seems to stand still, the past month has flown by.  It's been over a month since I decided to start a blog and there have been some thunderstorms and choppy waves along the way.  I'm hoping to get back on course soon! Through the twists and turns and "dramatic drops" of life, isn't it good to know that storms do not last forever?

Psalm 107:29-32 says "He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed. They were glad when it grew calm, and He guided them to their desired haven. Let them give thanks to the LORD for His unfailing love and His wonderful deeds for mankind."

Calmer seas and sunshine are on the horizon!