Thursday, July 17, 2008

Hiatus - Part II

Hello folks,

As a few of you may have noticed, I have not been seen around these parts for a few weeks. A small reason for that is that my brother and his kids are in town until Sunday, having arrived on the 11th. But the real reason just boils down to stress and not feeling especially chatty about our trials. I know there are plenty of folks who blog through the rough times and I have an immense amount of respect for them. I have never been like that though - I even find my trusty journal gets visited less frequently when I am preoccupied.

So, I am on hiatus again until... well, I don't know exactly. I am keeping tabs on friends' blogs now and then; just checking in, but have not done as much online surfing as I've felt able to do in easier times. For the time being, I may leave comments here and there when I pay you a visit.

Until later, I'll leave you with a cute photo of my kids and their cousins paying tribute to High School Musical at Seaworld. We just visited there on Tuesday - a treat and distraction gifted to us from Mom. That Mom. She's the best. :) Thanks again, Mom. :)

Take care, everyone, and I hope to visit with you again sometime soon.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


Do you have travel plans this summer? It certainly is a different world out there right now, isn't it? We are enjoying a "stay-cation" this year! lol! Reigning in extra spending is called for now with my family and while I'm sure there may be days that I'll find myself grumbling a bit, for the most part - and right now - I am spurned on by the challenge.

My goal this month is to cut our grocery bill to nearly half... at the very least, I'd like to cut it by $200. Food prices have gone up, that is true, but when we had a more comfortable budget, I had stopped comparison pricing everything and allowed for more convenience things for the weekends when I let everyone make their own breakfasts and lunches. But now, of course, we will not be having nearly as many boxed cereal selections or frozen veggie burgers, etc. And that is really okay. I consider the increased work I now have in the kitchen to be similar to earning money elsewhere.

Soups are terrific for turning a little bit of food into a lot. Ever since I discovered and modified a homemade recipe for vegetable bouillon, our soups are really quite wonderful and we have one kind or another at least once a week.

Mmmm... yum! I love all the pretty colors!

Yesterday's tasks, though, really kicked me in the seat if you know what I mean! :) The real clincher was grooming our dog, Lucy. Ugh. NOT a favorite job of mine and grooming services were a welcome addition to our budget last year. But, it is no more, and so I am back to trying to keep Lucy to,"STAY!" while I try to make smmooooottth lines with the electric clippers and not leave her all streaky looking or with chunks of fur out of her coat! Of course, she won't stand still and it is just little old me trying to keep her stationary on the garage floor instead of the little leash and table the professional groomers all have. I came inside all sweaty and itchy with 2000 tiny, white hairs all stuck to my body - anywhere there was moisture on me (including my mouth) which was just about everywhere. But, hey, I saved $40, right. :)

So, after our homemade pizza supper, I was whipped. A good night sleep, though, gave me a great deal of energy for today's hike out at Emerson Point Park, which is a state park about 25 minutes from our house. A good "getaway" this morning; the air smelled so delicious out there among all the trees and greenery.

Books, movies, and even puzzles from the library are keeping our summer "stay-cation" interesting. And for me, of course, there's the knitting... there's always the knitting! :)

I finished my River Rapids socks last week. They would have been finished a month ago, but I had forgotten one last pattern repeat on the second sock and didn't realize it until it was completed. It was at least an inch shorter than the other sock! I told myself, "It doesn't matter... they're just socks..." but I couldn't take it! I've given away too many nice socks for other people to have this one pair be messed up for me. So after we parted for a few weeks (we really were not speaking, my socks and I), I was ready to face them again, rip them back and them fix them, good as new! And it really only took just a bit of time, but at the time, I just couldn't look at them one more minute! But now we are friends once more; reunited and just waiting for the late days of autumn to begin our adventures!

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