Wednesday, July 23, 2014

YouTube & FlyLady Saved Us Hundreds of Dollars

First of all I might have mentioned this before but our dryer stopped working a few months back. We have been looking and looking and finally decided on one but then I didn't want to put the money out because we had a slow down of income. Like I said just when you get used to having money it stops coming in.

Anyways I have been Flying with the FlyLady and in one of the emails I received one of the customers were writing a review for a product which was the Dryer Lint Kit , but it got me to thinking. Let me do a search on Google to see if it is something that is easy enough for my husband to fix.

The first thing that popped up was a YouTube video for the very same dryer we have .

My husband did everything the Video said to do to test our dryer and sure enough it worked. He then got on Ebay and found the parts we needed for under $40.00 shipped. This has saved us hundreds of dollars. I am so glad we held off on getting rid of it and buying a new one.

I have found more good in the internet then bad, which is why I am still here.

Has a online search ever saved your money?

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Back to school physicals and shopping have started.

Dorothy had her physical today. She is 6 1/2 and ready to enter 2nd grade. She is a whole 50 1/2 pounds and grew a whole four and a half inches. The Dr. said most kids her age average about two and a half inches in a year. We thought she would be short but who knows. I guess time will tell. 

While we were there Dennise saw the other Dr. to get new medication for her allergies. They have been giving her a ride for the money all summer long. Mine seem to come and go depending on where we are or what we are doing. So far I have gotten through with no medications.

My back is getting better just taking it easy just in case for a while. Hard to believe in a little over a month the girls will be returning to school. The vacations seem to go by too quickly. We have started out back to school shopping already. 

This week was underwear shopping, and we got a few notebooks that Dennise wanted for school. 

I do a little school supply shopping each week taking advantage of the great sales. I also take each week or every other week and pick up clothes for the girls. We did socks about two weeks ago. Next will be book bags if needed, and then shoes, followed by clothes. 

I think we have it down to one store to get Dorothy and Deanna's clothes from and one or two for Dennise depending on what we can find. We don't have as much money as we had last year so we have to be a bit careful with our spending. The girls are pretty adaptable so I am sure all will work out. 

Hoping to get a few things I need in the clothing department as well as new sneakers for my husband, as he is attending college himself. Learning is a lifelong process and something I always look forward to myself. 

How do you all do back to shopping? All at one time, spread out, early, or last minute? Chime in below. 

Monday, July 21, 2014


Over the weekend we went to visit my parents grave site. My father died in 2001 and my mother shortly after in 2004. I was a bit upset to find their site looking a little worse for wear, so we plan to go back soon and tidy it up.

It is customary for us to drive past the last place they lived when leaving the area. When we went by it was like something hard dropped in my stomach. The trailer was gone, actually the whole trailer park was gone.

It was just another reminder that when you die the world goes on. Which bothers me a bit even though I know it is true, because to me a part of me stopped the day my parents died. A part of me was suspended in time, with the rest of my body going on.

It hit me quite hard and I shed a few tears. Dennis even said he saw the look in my face. It was like losing a part of them all over again. See when Dennis and I don't get a long I used to go to my parents and spend time with them, now if it is at night I take the car and drive past the places I lived with my parents. It soothes me, and when I feel better I am able to return to the house, my husband, and the kids. Rarely does it happen during the day but if it does I visit them at the grave site.

Which brings me to the last bit of being sad. I know how I was with my parents and how much I loved them, and how respectful I was of them. I also know how my husband is and was with his parents. I just don't understand how families today can just turn their backs on each other. I just can not put my mind around it. It sickens me.

I guess I was brought up right to love everyone always, be forgiving, talking things through, and always trying to help out when needed. I guess that is why I have always been the mediator, because I want everyone to get along always, which in a lot of ways makes me a door mat, but I would rather be more like Jesus in forgiving and loving people then to be sour, hateful, and spiteful.

Life is meant to be full of love, not hatred. So in leaving you tonight I pray for everyone to take a minute and see if you can turn that hate back around into a loving feeling. No one knows what tomorrow brings.

Weekend travels.

Well not far travels, but we did get our errands done. My daughter Dennise went with her friends to NYC, while Deanna was at her friends house, so we were off with just Dorothy for the day. We did our shopping at Walmart, Aldi's, and Shop Rite. My order for Shop Rite started out at 185.40, after coupons I paid 66.05. Walmart we got school supplies and my magazine. Aldi's were pizzas, carrots, avocados, celery, and deli meat for the girls for summer school.

Dorothy asked if we could eat out and we happened to have Burger King coupons so we did. Dorothy was a happy girl and all she cares about is that she gets one of those dollar chicken sandwiches.

We have really cut down on how much we eat out to save money. Most of the time we buy our pizza's at Aldi's and then freeze then when we get home so that we have them in the house instead of ordering pizza. Mind you when all 8 of us were here we used to cook 4 pizza's to feed everyone. Now there are just 5 of us and we get buy with one. There is $15.00 in savings alone. Not to mention how much it would cost to feed all of us if we went out to eat. I remember bills over $100.00 when we would eat out.

Next year we plan on not going to the movies at all unless they are free through one of the sites I frequent. For those who know my husband and I try to have date night once a week needn't worry because we will stay have our date nights. It might be a little snack after the kids go to bed, a board game, or a movie that just the two of us watch from our huge collection of DVD's. We are pretty adaptive to changes, thankfully.

Sunday the kids were all doing their thing when my husband's mom stopped by. The last time she stopped by she was trying to sell her house, but now she is working on getting a loan to fix it up a bit before putting it back on the market, she really needs all of the luck she can get. The housing market is really bad right now, and I don't see it getting better anytime soon.

We have even thought about making the plunge but to be honest every time we get used to money coming in steady we have a big hiccup out of our control that throws everything off. Time will tell if we actually make the leap, but for now I am just glad that our Landlord once again is sending his men to fix things up in our home. Believe me I have a huge list and most of the stuff on it has been there for the whole time we have lived here. This is our 8th summer here.

Sorry our weekend travels were not more exciting but hey that's life.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

My sink is shiny!

     Some of my readers might know what the name of my post means. I have been flying in and out for years. Mostly out because of the symptoms of Fibromyalgia, and my weak immune system. I have my good days and bad days. It doesn't matter though because Fly Lady says "You are not behind! I don't want you to try to catch up; I just want you to jump in where we are. O.K.?", and that works for me. 

     It took a long time to grasp that because I am a perfectionist at heart, and someone who won't start projects until I have just the right materials to get it done. Believe me I still fight with my perfectionism more times then I can count, but slowly I am starting to slow down and enjoy the life I have with my family.

     With FlyLady's system which is free for all you start out with BabySteps and work up to flying. I think I like her system so much because it reminds me of the things my mother did as I was growing up. It worked for her and now someone else was doing the same exact thing she did. It just amazed me and I know for sure my mom was older then the FlyLady so she didn't get it from her. 

    My mother did most of her cleaning 15 minutes at a time because she just couldn't clean any longer then that because of her medical problems. She would rest for a bit and then get back up and do some more until she was done.

     Me I have always been the one that has to do all or nothing. I also have a problem with cooking in my kitchen if everything is not wiped down before starting dinner, which means there can be no dishes, and the counters even if they were already cleaned have to be cleaned again. Then dinner is started. 

     In the past on the good days I would be in a whirlwind to get everything on my list done before I ran out of steam, but it just didn't work, leaving me feeling useless when days or weeks would go by and nothing was really done in the house, and it was all just piling up around me. 

     Don't get me wrong my kids helped when they felt like it, but they grew up with me being sick and knew when I was feeling good I would get it all done so they didn't try to hard. As for my husband he can clean and cook, but he wasn't really seeing how hard it was for me to keep up with everything until he had an accident at work in early 2013. That is when his eyes opened to how painful it was for me to get things done. 

     My husband was used to me cleaning non-stop and keeping things pretty much spotless. So as the years went by and the pain got worse, things were getting backed up, I just blamed it on having 6 kids to look after He  just thought I was being lazy. 

    He still struggles with seeing me in pain, because in the past I was always the one to get things done right, and now I depend on him more and more to help me when those bad days, still way to often happen. I didn't think he noticed me reading my FlyLady emails but he did. He said I always see you interacting with the site. This surprised me. I told him a little about it and why I liked it so much and he is standing behind my endeavors to Fly High with the other FlyBabies, and FlyLadies, because it makes makes me happy.

     Now most people who know me from when I was younger knew I was very organized and tidy, but once my father died in 2001, things changed and it wasn't too long before my mother followed my father in 2004. Big changes happened inside me because the two most important people in my life were gone. Yes I love my husband and my children, but it just is not the same love you have for your parents.

    I lost a big chunk of me when they died and a little over a year ago I started working on bringing me back. It has been a long road but step by step I am making my way back to being me. 

If you want to find out more about what a Shiny Sink is or more about FlyLady then visit the sites below.

and let's not forget
 where you buy all kinds of things to make your cleaning easier.

More then a little busy

OK more then a little busy. School has ended and Summer is in full swing. The girls have spent most of their summer riding bikes, swimming, and going to Summer School. Dennise isn't going to summer school so she has been spending time with her friends and sister on top of swimming.

I had hoped to buy a new bike for Dennise she hasn't had one in a few years, and one for me so the girls and I could all ride together, helping me loose weight, while spending time doing something active together, but it just didn't happen. Maybe next year.

Between my jobs and Dennis being in college we have fit a few fun things in. We had a few things planned that might not happen now, but we are adaptable and will persevere. We have plenty of free or almost free things planned to somewhat make up for our plan changes.

I just went through a few weeks with my knee acting up, then a few good days, to my back being out for three days and counting now, although it does feel better tonight. Let's see how it feels tomorrow before I say it is all better.

Even with all of that we did manage as a family to spruce up a few things and declutter a few places in the house that needed work on. I really should get in the habit of taking before and after shots so you all can see the difference.

When we moved here 7 years ago we had boxed all of our DVD's up, we had some in a pull out drawer of a bunk bed for a while until we got rid of it then they went back into boxes. My husband bought me new shelves for our DVD and CD collection as a Christmas present. He put them together and we just pretty much threw all of the DVD's and CD's on the shelves in no particular order. It was not pleasing to look at.

My lovely daughter Dennise decided to do the whole job herself putting all of the movies in alphabetical order. When my husband and I left today to take our vehicle for it's first oil change and tire rotation, as well as a trip to Sam's club, while throwing in a visit to the movie theater, we combined date night into our errands, there were still movies everywhere between the dining room and living room.

When we returned not only did the girls already put out the garbage but the movies were all put on the shelves, the dishes were washed, and the little ones were all in bed. I am a very proud mother in deed.
We have been trying to work on the girls being more respectful. I know in public they can be Angels, well most of the time anyways, but behind closed doors they fight like cats and dogs, and they have mouths of a Sailor.

I am forever telling them to stop swearing, but it is hard when your husband swears and yes even I have sworn from time to time. It started about the time my oldest started swearing when he was a teenager. Before that I didn't swear that much. I still don't swear a lot but it can get out of hand when it is all you hear.

We may be a Christian family and know better, but it doesn't mean we don't make mistakes. If we didn't make mistakes we wouldn't be human. So I guess some of what we have been trying to tell the kids is sinking in and eventually they will use intelligent ways to communicate to each other instead of yelling. Please pray for our family to become closer and kinder to each other.

Thunder on Sycamore Street

I was talking about my daughters musicals and plays before and forgot to mention the drama department's play of Thunder on Sycamore Street

My daughter Dennise pictured above played one of the wives.

Here you can see the wives listening in on the husband's conversations about what to do with the new neighbors, one which happens to be a man who just got out of jail.
The community doesn't like that sort of people messing up their way of life. 

The show was better then I thought it was going to be.
Above my daughter being led out by her husband a.k.a best male friend in the world.

Here are some of the cast waiting for the rest of the characters to come out on stage.

Here they are doing their bows.

Last but not least the whole cast of Thunder on Sycamore Street.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Dorothy Bridging from Daisies to Brownies.

It seems like only yesterday I was signing Dorothy up for Girls Scouts, now here it is two years later, the end of one level and onto another.

Here is our Troop while they are still Daisies. Aren't they cute? We got the rest of our badges on this evening so there will be two more pictures posted in another blog soon.

Each girl had their turn walking over the Bridge starting off as Daisies and ending with becoming Brownies. 

As you can see some of the girls like Dorothy were very happy to be Brownies.

Our party started at 5:30 and we all left well after 9:30. The girls had a great time as did the parents who attended. Great food, fun, and conversation. 
You would never know by the pictures that Dorothy was the first and only one to spill blood that night not once but twice. 
First was her her second tooth coming out, and the second was the hammock coming back and causing her to bite her lip. 
Didn't take her long to be back up running and playing with the kids. 
I so love how resilient children can be.
I hope years from now Dorothy and the rest of her troop will remember these times together.

Congratulations Girls!
June 27, 2014


Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Musicals and Plays

I told you I would be back and here I am. Been busy the last few days. Monday was pretty quite until my daughter Dennise got home and then we went to do my merchandising jobs and then out for girls night. Dennise  was recently in the Musical Les Miserables, by the Two of Us Productions

Here is the whole cast.

Here is my daughter holding the glasses used for one of the scenes. They kept falling off until she came up with the brilliant idea to put pieces of Play-Doh on the bottom of the glasses to hold them to the tray.

The Theatre Association of NY State has recognized their production of LES MISERABLES with 8 awards, including:
Outstanding ensemble work to the Company
Outstanding musical performance to the Orchestra

Dennise ran into another lady from Les Miserables and she gave her a secret code to get free tickets to see another play in another state.
The cost of the tickets would have been $90.00
Something we could just have not swung.
She took a chance on calling and sure enough there were seats left and she asked if she could get two. Bingo they said two tickets would be waiting for us when we got there.

When I was done with my jobs we had enough time to stop by Friendly's for dinner. The food was great but not for our diets.

Dennise took the lovely photo below while we were waiting for our food to come.

Below you can see us waiting for it to be time to go in to get our tickets. See how excited we are and of course my daughter's Les Miserables shirt. She had to represent. 

The play we saw was The Mystery of Irma Vep-A Penny Dreadful by Charles Ludlam. Directed by Aaron Mark. Staring Broadway Actor, Bill Bowers and Tony Award-nominated, Tom Hewitt. Between the Two of them they played 8 Charactors.

We were given balcony seats which as some of you may know might be good or they might be bad.
Ours were right in the front and I would say they were about the best seats in the house.

We could not take any photos during the play but I can tell you it was funny and the whole show was put on by two actors. Yes only 2 and there were tons of costume change overs. Amazing work to say the least. 

Here is a picture Dennise with Bill Bowers.

I have to also add that we were lucky because the night we went after the play the audience was able to ask questions and hear the answers from the Actors. It was great and a night we will all remember.

By the way for anyone who doesn't know Dennise will be a Senior next year and will be continuing her education in a College of the Arts.