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Updates

January 23, 2010
 

Its been a while since I’ve actively written here but I havent forgotten about it completely. Since it’s been so long I’d like to do an update on how things are going and what’s going on here.  

Monthly Cooking:  

The biggest thing that I’ve done was the monthly cooking. I’m going to continue to do that for the forseeable future. I missed an opportunity to do it in January, but things are working out just fine. Having done it for a few months now I have a better grasp on how it works and how to customize it to our family. I really like that too because I can use tried and true recipes for our family and I can make meal sizes that are more correct for us too. We aren’t a huge family by any means, however, there is an awful lot of the male persuasion in this household. Because of that, there is a lot more eating involved at mealtime. So instead of the 8×8 pans that you have seen me use in the past, I’m going to start using more of the 9×13 pans for the meals.  

One thing that I really need to focus on outside of the freezer part of the meals is the side dishes. Having the meals already in the freezer should give me more creative power to find sides that are apealing to smaller children and adults alike. Things like fresh veggies prepared with herbs and spices and fresh fruit to give a slightly sweet aspect to the meal. My kids LOVE fruit so that would be a hit at dinner time. There is one really nice thing to having the meals thought out and prepared already, and that is that I have more grocery money to think about getting fresh foods to put on the table. (The table is another conversation altoghether!)  

My new freezer!

Freezer:   

I GOT A FREEZER!!!!!! Im so happy about that! It was a super great deal too. I was very blessed over the holidays and was finally able to buy the freezer that I need for all the food Im cooking up. Its fairly large too. It’s about 13.5cuft inside and its a stand up freezer. We had originally purchased a 5 cuft chest freezer. We got it home, unwrapped it, plugged it in and …… nothing. It didnt work! To top it off, it made a funny sound when we plugged it in. So we called up Lowes and asked if they’d take it back. Of course, because it was just that morning when we bought it, they had to take it back. So we did. Got it back there, got the refund, and looked around at the freezers again. This time, we didnt have the kids. I took my Father in Law with me both times, because he has a truck and we dont at the moment. The first time, I had to take the kids because I didnt have anyone to watch them. The hubs was home the second time so I left them with him. Anyway, all that to bring you to my story of the freezer. When I got a chance to look around the second time, I decided to take a closer look at one that was with the scratch and dent stuff. I didnt take a good look the first time because I had the hellians wild things children and couldnt really get a good look without having to scream yell ask them to not get into things. It definately belonged in the scratch and dent stuff! It had a large indent on the lower part of the back (where no one will see it) that really didnt matter much because it didnt hit any vital parts of the freezer and it had scratches on the side and top of it (again where no one sees it). So we got ahold of a sales guy for the appliances and asked him about the price. It was quite steep for my budget originally. Retail was something like $430, and the discount was $375. We had asked him what his price point was and he told us $250. Unfortunately that was still out of my price range because after taxes it would have been a lot closer to $300. So I told him straight, I have 200, what can you offer? He decided that he needed to check with his manager and so he left for a few minutes and came back. When he came back he let us know that the lowest he could go was 225 and that was because it was at cost. So, not wanting to walk away from a great deal, I took it. After taxes, it was closer to the 250 but it was manageable. Never underestimate the power of negotiation! Honestly, I think its fun.  

Sewing:  

There really hasnt been a lot of that going on here. Partly because of lack of motivation, and partly because I dont have a great space to work on it. I’d love to be able to start a project, and leave it there to go work on something else (like making lunch for the kids) for a while to come back to. Currently I only have my kitchen table to work off of and it’s a bit of a hassle to set everything up, get started, tear everything down, eat, try to get started again … and on and on like that. Not condusive to real work! So I really need to find a permanent solution for that. Until then, the sewing will probably be a rare occurence.  

Baby Bootie

Knitting/Crochet:  

Now here’s a craft that I’ve been able to get into! I hadnt posted about it because I started right around the time I stopped blogging. Coincidence? Im not sure. There was a lot going on in November and December. In November sometime, I taught myself how to knit. I had done some with crochet in the past (by ‘some’ I mean I made a scarf in highschool) but I had never picked up knitting needles. I decided that it was time to figure it out so I grabbed a thing of yarn, a set of needles that looked like it was about middle of the road. It seems to me that you can make the very basic stuff with any size needle so long as it’s not the tiny knitting in the round needles or the super big needles for massive scarves or heavy sweaters. I got started with a simple pattern for a baby bootie and I think it turned out great! Then I did a pot holder/dish cloth. It works better as a pot holder or a pot coaster for the table. Anyway, it turns out that it was super easy to knit! I love it! All that you ever need to know about knitting is online. Just go to the websites for some of the more popular brands of yarn and they have the abbreviations and instructions on how to get started. If that isnt good enough, you can always go to youtube to find anything you need. So, between knitting and crochet, I think I have found a new hobby. I really enjoy both of them and wish I had a bit more money right now to get all the different things that I’d love to get for my use in this hobby. Alas, I just have to wait. Did I ever tell you how much I hate waiting?  

Spark:  

I will give you more information on this one in the future as I find out more about it. Like I had said in the last post, I have tried it and failed before because I never really got into it. This time, I am going to try to actually put more effort into maintaining myself on the site. So if you are part of SparkPeople and found me thru there, you might find some duplicate posts between my sparkblog and my personal blog.  

Coupons:  

This year I am going to try to use coupons a lot more for the toiletry items that we need here in the house. I’ll be using them for food too, but selectively. I really want to get into buying more fresh foods and eventually getting my garden going but for now, this is what I have.  

Kids/homeschool:  

As some of you know, we homeschool the oldest. Technically all of them but the oldest is actually school age. We seem to be doing well with the basics. There are a few tools that I’d like to get to enhance things like his penmanship and grammar. Also, I would love to get some flash cards for his addition and subtraction skills. He knows and understands all the lower numbers and is starting to understand adding double didgets, but I’d like to see him be able to just add in his head without having to use his fingers or a number line for the basics. He seems to be doing well with it all tho and he’s very excited to learn things. He usually does some sort of school work every day of the week. Not because I make him, but because he enjoys it that much. We have a lot of workbooks for his own personal use and he really enjoys those. As far as the two little boys, they seem to be doing well too. The youngest likes to count to 5 and sort of hum along with the abc’s and the middle boy can count to 20 without much difficulty and can sing the abc’s almost completely in order. I think I’ll be getting some flash cards for them as well to work with. I think that the middle boy is a visual learner and might actually need the cards to help him put the letters in order. That’s the short of it. I’d go on more, but I’ve already written a novel. 😉  

There’s a not so brief update on the goings on here. I know it’s been a long time and now that the holidays are over, I hope to be posting a lot more regularly. Thank you so much for being so patient with me.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 23, 2010 12:59 am

    Hi. I am a long time reader. I wanted to say that I like your blog and the layout.

    Peter Quinn

  2. AnyaEden permalink
    February 20, 2010 12:03 pm

    I just wanted to say that I really enjoyed reading your blog and all the work that you put into it.

    Your entries are well thought out and complete with needed information.

    I like how you reassure the reader to go ahead and try the Once a month cooking for themselves. It made me want to step out of my comfort zone and try it for myself.

    Thanks for the info.

  3. anabenet permalink*
    February 20, 2010 6:18 pm

    Thanks Anya! I really appreciate you comment. Im glad that you feel that Once a Month cooking can be a real option for your family. 🙂 It is definately a help to us.

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