Tuesday, January 26, 2016

This weeks savings, blessings, unexpected happenings, and revalations.

Attempts at saving:

I swear clothes just aren't made the way they used to be.  Some of the new kids my clothes received over Christmas etc....are supposed to be the right size but I am afraid if I dry them they will shrink, so those pieces I am worried about, i have laid out to dry in hopes to get a longer life span out of them.

I got our male kitten that we acquired in August neutered for free through our counties local humane society.  I forgot about this service.  I used it two years ago when we moved here to have a couple of females done (they ran away though not long after.)  Anywho....the program was free for all cats regardless of income of the owner.

We got creative with a couple of meals because I just don't want (nor will we ever be able to get a place of our own if we have) to go to the grocery store every single week.  We pulled chicken off the bone (from left overs) and added some spices, veggies and pasta to make soup...and when it looked like it might not stretch far enough, we made some cheese quesadillas and also used some left over re-fried beans to make some other quesadillas to go with the soup.  (my friend and I shop together but the amount we are spending on groceries in my personal opinion is getting astronomical but i know different strokes for different folk)

I was able to bring home a box of brownies from my daughter's school.  Sometimes they have left over Little Debbie snacks that they give to families.

We had lunch at the Sr. Center on Saturday.  We brought home some extra soup and a sandwich as well as a loaf of bread.  We played some games at home afterwards.


My daughter received from my Uncle's family a box of clothes in the mail that contained a princess dress, two pairs of pants, and a shirt I believe. She loved every piece.  I thought it was really nice of them to think of us when they are going through their things, and they pay shipping to send them all the way to us here in Florida when they could have donated them for free some place near their home.

We got to see some of the teeniest tiniest snow flurries on Saturday.  It made me smile because I actually do still like snow.

The friend I live with gave us a jacket her daughter will not wear, so it will be great for using now if needed and should work for next year too.

My friends built a fire in the fire place.  It was nice and most of the kids fell asleep by it in the living room that night.

Unexpected Happenings:

Not much drama in this department.  Doing my daughters family tree project depressed me deeply...at least the biological part does....our family is either broken or alot of them are gone.  If I could design it, part of it would be dead but some branches would have flowered with new life.  Most of the people we call family now aren't biologically and I know that doesn't matter but there would be some beautiful branches, if I could design it myself.  Doing the project made me think about alot of old things.  I am probably not making any sense.

My husband ran a fever for four days, and we ended up at the Care Spot, where they said he had an upper respiratory infection...so that was a $40.00 unexpected expense along with 5.00 for medications.  His antibiotic was free at Publix, but the pain medication was not.


You can't always run from your problems.  Sometimes you just have to sit there and work through and learn in them.  I need to pray more for my children.  I still struggle with changing my habits.  Our house hunt is proving difficult.  Waiting is proving difficult.  Not that where we live is bad or anything.  It is a beautiful and wonderfully warm home.  We are not being rushed out.  As a matter of fact when the temperature dropped this past week here, the kids and I felt led to pray for those that worked in the cold, or maybe even live in it and may have been unprepared for any type of winter weather.  Doctor's still can't say for sure what is going on with me, but there is hope that it is not life threatening if they can't find it right?  (like i said old baggage from losing a mother, and later in life my first unborn child.  You think everything is fine and one day it's not.)  So I worry alot about things I can't control. 

Monday, January 18, 2016

This weeks savings, blessings, unexpected happenings, and revelations

So how was last week for you?  Any challenges I can pray for on your behalf?

Attempts at saving:

I mentioned last week that I am working to be more intentional with my children.  My daughter is in Pre K and I have been leaving it to the teachers to do all the teaching. I am not sure that she is where she needs to be for Kindergarten next year, so I downloaded two free apps onto one of our Nooks.  One is for learning letter recognition and writing, and the other is for sight words.

I also downloaded the Proverbs 31 First 5 app to add additional bible study time for myself.  (The app is also free)

My friends was tossing out a couple of notebooks I thought might be helpful with my planning and for writing down prayers etc since most of my supplies are in storage.

I cleaned up my daughter's sneakers to breathe a little new life into them.  We bought them at the beginning of the school year.  Just washed them off with a little Dawn dish soap and a rag, and they look a little nicer.

I stayed on budget for pet supplies.


My friends father is a widower so he had purchased some chicken tenders for himself but being alone it was far to much for him, so he brought them here to her house along with some actual fresh from the tree oranges. (This was a wonderful snack for everyone.)

The friend we already live with gave me a ride to all events (my kids have to be driven back and forth to school right now, and my son had an awards assembly, plus we needed to go shopping.)

Unexpected Happenings:

Our van broke down.  Monday morning. We got it back Friday for a repair cost of about 351.00. (thus the reason for the rides everywhere.)  We are blessed though that it was fixable at first the mechanic couldn't figure out what the problem was.  My husband also made enough to cover the repair (normally his paychecks wouldn't have been enough it could have taken us up to two weeks to pay for the repair)  We have towing through our car insurance so there was no out of pocket cost for that!

We were planning on having ham, beans, and rice for dinner one night.  I was cooking the beans from dry ones we had brought here with us.  I burned the beans.  Complete an total flop.  Instead we used left over chicken and made chicken salad with nachos and cheese sauce for dinner.  (I can't lie dinner still turned out pretty good.  We ate the ham another night with macaroni and cheese.)

The nice new jacket I purchased for my son a couple weeks ago has been lost.  There have been some days when he needed a thicker coat in the mornings because the temperature has finally changed.  I have honestly had to tell myself it is just a jacket.  It is replaceable.  It is just a thing.  So I have prayed instead that it would be found and at least used by someone who needs a coat if we cannot find it.  I don't want it to sit somewhere and just rot.  In a bag of clothes given to us by my nephews wife on Christmas eve we found another thicker coat which I washed up and it has worked just fine.  I do need to put something on the zipper like a handle.  I found a key ring I hope will work.

I shopped with a grocery list, but deviated a little even though I know better. So I went about 36.00 over my planned budget for this particular trip, but not over the monthly budget for groceries. A bag of apples here, some goldfish there, you get the idea.


You can't force someone to seek God.  I can only do my part.  I don't have to be everything to everyone.

That about wraps us last weeks happenings.  This week I have a doctor's appointment to see if we can identify a particular issue with my health that is extremely aggravating, I pray it doesn't turn out to be life threatening.(I worry alot....losing my mom as a child left scars.)  My husband also found out this morning that one of his coworkers is in a coma from a motorcycle accident.  I do not know if this man was a believer in Christ or not, I can't imagine the things his family must be going through.  Prayers appreciated.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Power in Acts of Kindness

Let me tell you that you have POWER!!!!

We all have the power to make a difference in someone's life regardless of our how much we think we do or don't have. You can absolutely impact someone's day with an act of kindness.

Whether it is sending someone a reminder to take one more step in their walk with Christ, and sharing a Bible reading challenge, or mailing a package full of mugs, and hot choclate and candles to a family you have never met in person.

You never know how a delightful scent of a burning candle can lift a spirit when a case of the grumpies have kicked in when someone has had a bad morning.  When those cups might be used to steal a moment with a daughter on a day it's is just her and her mom, and they take a break and enjoy some hot chocolate together.  How a woman who is unfaithful in her time with God might actually take the Bible Challenge and reminders you give her and place them in a Bible next to her bed so that when she wakes up in the morning she is reaching for her Bible and not her cell phone to look at social media instead.  How paying for the person behind you in a drive through line might bless a husband who was going to pay for his own lunch but you paid it for him and it became a special blessing for him, a way that he could see God had reached out and gave him just a little touch of love.  How his heart might be lifted because you could never know the struggles he might be facing or how defeated he could be feeling.

Maybe your grandchildren are grown and you have a teddy bear and a pillow they used to snuggle with while you read to them that they don't want and you pass it on to some little girl or boy you met at church, and that little girl is going to love and hug on that bear and sleep with it every night.  Maybe there is an old race track and hot wheels that your kids outgrew but there is some other little boy you walk past every day or maybe just once in your lifetime and you pass it on and he gets hours of joy just sitting and playing in his hallway.

Acts of kindness such as these have made a wonderful difference in my life.  I know I can never thank everyone who has touched my life.  There is power in acts of kindness both big and small. I just felt like that needed to be shared today.  Hope you are having a great week!

Creative K Kids

Sunday, January 10, 2016

This weeks savings, blessings,unexpected happenings, and revelations.

How are you doing this week.  We are 10 days into the new year already.  Time sure does fly.

I wanted to just check in and let everyone know where we are and what's going on.

Do you know what I finally did this week, I sat down and figured out what our bills are and what we may be able to pay for a place of our own.  It looks pretty pathetic to me, (we just don't make the same amount of money we used to since my husband lost his job but eventually went back to a different position. He makes the same hourly wage but does not get overtime, which I would rather make less money and have more time as a family.  It is just adjusting now and figuring out how to live within our means.)  Anyway as many of you know a good place to start is by seeing what you have to pay, and were you can cut back if necessary.  That is now done.  I know what we have to pay in our current situation, and I have an idea of what we can steadily afford once we get enough together to venture out on our own.  (a very sweet friend reminded me, just because I think our budget is pathetic doesn't mean that God does, and He has the means to provide for wherever we are supposed to go.)

To save money this particular week:

I found a hotel sized bottle of conditioner and my daughter had an empty 7 fl oz bottle that used to contain de-tangling spray.  I emptied the sample of conditioner into the bottle, and filled the rest with water.  We shake it each time before we use it, but I made her detangling spray out of stuff we already had on hand.

My husband cut his own hair.

We were not out of laundry soap but with the expenses we had this week I did not want to be the one to use all the laundry soap and be unable to replace it so...I put two small scoops of baking soda into the washer along with some vinegar and small drops of dish detergent to wash a couple loads of clothes.  It seems to have worked and didn't break anything.  ( I am not recommending using this in particular....to anyone I don't know if it's good for a washing machine or not.)  My clothes seem fresh though and I only have to make it work till next Friday!


My friend was given an over the toilet shelf system that she placed in the bathroom we use (myself and five others use this one bathroom) and it will definitely help us fit more of the daily things we use.

My children received a very special package in the mail that contained one outfit for each of them from my Uncle and his family.  They were very excited.  (When we moved here I only brought about 10 days worth of clothing for each person, plus a jacket and a long sleeve shirt or two, and I swear it looked like nothing fit them, I thought how can I be such a terrible mother to see my kids every day and not know which clothes fit and which ones don't?  We measured them and it turns out my daughter has grown three inches and my son has grown one...practically overnight.)  The clothes have been a blessing!

We ate lunch at the Senior Center on Saturday and they sent us home with a delicious marbled glaze cake.

My son had a free pizza party through his extra curricular activity because he received straight A's.

Unexpected happenings: 

We selected vision insurance this year because it is evident my husband's prescription in his glasses is outdated and he is having trouble seeing, and his particular glasses were very expensive last year out of pocket.  Selecting the insurance we hoped would allow us to correct his vision problems now, but when he went for his exam, his glasses were a little more pricey then expected.  It cost us $95.00 out of pocket and it will be another 35.00 to pick up the protections plan.  (if history has taught me anything we will probably need this, he has literally ran over a pair before, and I stepped on and crushed a different pair with my knees while looking around trying to find them.)

My son handsome as he is....found out he needs glasses too.....his were not quite as expensive as his fathers but still cost $50.00 plus the $35.00 protection fee...because he is a boy and a child we assumed we will have to eventually replace them.

We had been nursing (by filling it with air at least once a week) a back tire on our van.  This week I stopped being able to nurse it and had to replace it.  That was 80.00.  We still need one more tire on the front of the van, but we can only take care of so much at a time.  Our Christmas time illness caused my husband to lose some hours at work, so his paycheck wasn't normal this week.


We did not spend money eating out at all this week.  When you make a commitment not to do something...it seems as if you are more tempted to want to do it.  I am pushing through with daily bible reading, all except for today I managed to make sure I did that first thing in the morning.  Today I did it after breakfast.  We are working to be more intentional with our children.  We have prayed with them and in doing so I have learned specific things I can pray for each child. 

I am not ready to give up excess sugar...lol...but I have confessed the situation to God and invited him into my sin, and meet me as I am.....

There are blessings in our trials.  (Thank you to everyone who has listened to and talked me through my sniveling.)  Through your encouragement...I can see it is better that these unexpected expenses have popped up while we are under the roof of another family and we are not having to pay these expenses along with regular rent and household bills. (Man I have some wise and wonderful friends.)

I was a little grumpy about our out of pocket expenses but hearing my son say wow look at the colors mom....and wow mom you look....wow i can really see you....paying some out of pocket costs....is well worth the gift of better vision....(a friend told me that earlier this week too...and in the experience I see now she was so right :) )  

I am also learning how to organize our things in the space we have and I want to make our personal space feel like a haven no matter how much or what kind of space it is.  I hung up one personal decoration of our own in the room we are in, and in the coming weeks we plan to make a "War Room" wall.  I don't know if you have seen that movie, but it is worth the watch.  I hope to share more in the upcoming week.

I have probably given you plenty of information you may have never wanted to know.  Thank you for still following along.  How was your week?

Monday, January 4, 2016

Happy New Year.

Yep lately that is me always running behind....

I have no idea what the New Year holds in store.  The New Year finds us still living with our friends.  We sleep in their daughter's bedroom.  There is an office where my children can sleep but often they choose not to, and they sleep at the foot of our bed in the floor.  We share the room with our three cats (which some nights is completely unnerving) and our dog.  I know we are very blessed to have this space and a roof over our heads.  There is plenty of food to eat, and my husband still has his job.  There is much to be thankful for.  Still I have to be honest, I have been angry alot, feeling like we failed somehow, and I have struggled with feelings of ungratefulness.  This is something I will be taking up with God, and I am joining our church in  21 days fasting and prayer. Something I have never really done before.  I am not doing a traditional fast of food, but I have made a commitment to let prayer and God's word be the first thing I reach for in the morning. (instead of facebook or some other social media outlet).

As a family for the next 21 days we will avoid spending any money on food outside of the grocery store (so essentially we mean no eating or buying any drink or food out.)  Personally I want to also work on giving up excess sugar in my life for these next couple of weeks.  At night we are making a commitment to pray with our children and talk with them before bed.  To pray together about what is next for us, where are we going, what will we do.  I am looking forward to this next 21 day journey, and I hope to be able to share it with you as we go along.

That being said, our family was blessed beyond measure for Christmas.  I struggled with accepting additional blessings from other people when I can never repay them, and to be honest I felt we did not deserve those blessings. Over the last few weeks, we had friends visit from out of state, some family also stopped by, and we only got an hour or so with them, but it was wonderful.  On Christmas morning my beautiful 10 year old son began the morning privately in our room with the story of the birth of Jesus from the Bible in the book of Luke.  He was able to enjoy opening his gifts and played for about 20 minutes before becoming ill.  The next couple of days drug on as the illness went down the line of our family.  I personally didn't get the same illness but a sinus infection instead. The financial setback is frustrating, when your husband misses two days of work he will not get paid for and has to have a doctor's note, so you have to pay that fee on top of not getting paid. We are feeling much better now, the kids have officially opened and played with each of their blessings.  I have been working to find a place for them to fit into our borrowed space.

Two nights ago we finally got to have the Christmas dinner we never got to make.  We enjoyed ham, deviled eggs, mashed potatoes, and cheddar bay biscuits.  For dessert there was chocolate cake, and what my daughter has deemed "Grinch punch."

We officially welcomed the New Years with laughs and cheers!  Happy New Year from our family to yours!