Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Callie's 2nd Birthday

So I'm not sure if it is because I'm working and feel extremely overwhelmed, or if it is just the fact that Callie's birthday is in December...but I was not motivated at all in planning her birthday party. Normally I am super excited and know what I'm going to do a few months in advance. Maybe it is the curse of the second kid...been there done that before type of thing. Two weeks before Callie's birthday, we were sitting on the beach by the fire at an Elder's Quorum activity when I finally received some inspiration. One of my favorite books to read in December is Chris Van Allsburg's The Polar Express. I decided it would be fun to have a Polar Express Birthday Party for Callie. So I came home that night and stayed up creating cute little invitations that looked like tickets. The kids wore their pajamas to the party. We had homemade hot chocolate in our hot chocolate maker for the kids. We watched The Polar Express movie. Everyone had a great time! The kids left with their own bells. Here are some pictures from the party. I love her expressions!




Thursday, December 2, 2010

Mickey's Christmas Party


Yes, that IS snow in Florida! Last month we took a quick trip down to Disney for our first Mickey's Christmas Party. I've never been before and didn't really know what to expect. The Magic Kingdom closes early and you have to buy a separate ticket for the event. We have season passes so we just had to purchase the event tickets. This is amazing because most people don't want to buy two tickets...this means less people in the park. It was totally worth the money!

When we first walked in we saw the snow. I don't know who was more excited for it the kids or me! All of the employees were dressed in Christmas outfits and everything was decorated for Christmas.

We immediately went to our favorite ride, Buzz Lightyear. Normally, this ride is a 90 minute wait. However, it was only a 5 minute wait! It was this way for all of the rides. We didn't even have to wait to ride the tea cups. We'd get on, off, and right back on. It was AWESOME!

After a few rides, we decided to take advantage of the FREE hot chocolate and cookies. This is a big deal because everything in the park is super expensive. Being the frugal momma I am, I made sure we got our fill of free goodies.

We then went to the parade route and found a spot. The kids really loved it because they both love Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. Callie is not into any princesses, but loves Minnie Mouse. Santa also made an appearance in the parade. That made Carson's night.

After the parade there was an amazing fireworks show. It was all coordinated with Christmas music. We even got to see Tinkerbell fly. Callie was more interested in seeing Tink.

Another really neat thing about Mickey's Christmas Party was that characters randomly came by to interact with the kids. We were eating some dinner and Goofy randomly came by. Look at Carson's face! He had so much fun! Usually you have to reserve and pay a ton to eat with the characters.
video
After dinner, we went to a dance party. An elf led the kids in all kinds of dancing. The kids really loved it! They got on the dance floor and shook their booties.
We had such a blast. I think it is going to be a yearly tradition to go down just for Mickey's Christmas Party.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Catching Up on the Year

So obviously I never take time to update my blog. It takes a Thanksgiving break that we are actually staying at home for in order for me to find the time to blog. I was glancing over the previous blog posts to see what was important to me the last few times I posted. I am still crazily couponing. The spoils of couponing have helped us save up for a brand new livingroom set complete with a new tv. It is the first really nice furniture we have had. Anyway, here is what has been going on with the Florida Golds...

Carson started Kindergarten this year! How crazy is that?! I love this picture because they both look so happy...this is BEFORE Callie realized she wasn't going to school too. Carson has a fabulous teacher this year named Mrs. Sexton (yes Carson is learning to spell sex in kindergarten as he writes her name a million times). His best friend Gabi is in his class again this year (we rigged it that way). It is so funny to just listen in on their conversations. A few weeks ago Carson and Callie were playing while I cooked. I heard Carson say, "Gabi! Gabi!" I stopped and asked, "What did you just say?" He giggled loudly (as he always does...he has no inside voice) and said, "Oh! I mean Callie! Silly me!" Perhaps they need some time apart?

I am still blessed in these hard economic times to have a job teaching 3rd grade. I absolutely love third graders! They are still so sweet and eager to please without much of an attitude. They love learning and enjoy anything hands on. As much as I love teaching, I am ready for Jordan to be done with school and get a job so we can switch roles again. I am ready to be at home with my babies. I've also done a fabulous job of losing my baby weight and then some (which puts me back at the size I was right after Jordan and I got married). I lost 30 pounds with Weight Watchers online. I've been able to keep it off too without much effort, which is awesome.

Callie is about to turn two and is a mess! I call her my expressive child. She LOVES to color...especially all over her body (I never had this problem with Carson). She makes the craziest expressions and is very animated. She has some redheaded grandma in her when it comes to letting people know what she wants and when she wants it.

Jordan is busy being a stay at home dad and finishing up school. After this semester, he will have only 2 classes in the Spring and then he is done! I am so proud of him. I know this has been a long road for the both of us. We each thought that switching roles for a few years would be a piece of cake. ABSOLUTELY NOT THE CASE! We are both ready to switch back. It has been a learning and growing experience for both of us. I think we definitely have a greater respect and understanding for what the other one does for our family. I really am blessed to have been married to him for 6 years now.
I know that a lot more has taken place, and I really hate that I'm not blogging about it because that means I'm forgetting so much that is going on. I really will try to make an effort to blog once a week or so in hopes that I can remember all of the wonderful little crazy things my family does or says.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mardi Gras


Pre-K puts on a Mardi Gras parade at Waller every year. They make masks to wear, pass out beads, and dance. This year Carson was in the parade. He was so cute! Jordan came up and brought Callie too. It was nice. Carson has really grown a lot this year at school. I was really worried that he would be bored at school because he already knew a lot going into Pre-K. He has learned so much and grown up a lot this year.

Updates

Alright so I'm over taking pictures of my couponing deals. I'm still couponing my little heart out. We've established a new budget and have stuck to it. This has helped us save up for our trip to Disney. We are going the first weekend in April (my Spring Break). Duane and Faye are coming with us. We are super excited! Carson has been begging to go back for the past two years.

Carson is absolutely hilarious at this age. Yesterday he was outside playing because it was finally gorgeous. He picked up a big stick and ended up scratching his chest with it. There was some blood. He came in and we cleaned it up. He wanted a big band-aid on it. We were out of them, so I told him I would just use lots of little ones. So I began using my pre-nursing classes and bandaged him up. As I put a few band-aids on, Carson stopped me and said, "Mommy, I'm going to only have one booby. I can't have just one. I'm supposed to have two." Every day he has something silly like that to say.

Callie is into EVERYTHING! I totally forgot that 15 month olds are like tornadoes. She is always digging in my purse and emptying my wallet. She never messes with Jordan's stuff. It's always mine. She has developed a little attitude. She wants to make sure that even though she is small, she is still here.

Jordan is still tackling the Mr. Mom role. It's not been as glamorous as he had originally thought. He is really doing a good job though. He has 6 more classes until he graduates. HALLELUJAH! I love teaching, but I'm ready to switch roles too!

I am still teaching 3rd grade. I just survived another year of FCAT Testing. This year I've been less stressed (even Jordan noticed). I've joined Weight Watchers online. A lot of the girls at work are doing it at school. I've lost 17 pounds and am down 3 sizes. Hip hip hooray! Now that I'm losing the weight though, I am getting the baby bug. Jordan has to hurry up and get done with school so we can try for baby #3. That's what we have been up to.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Weekly Roundup

This week was a really good week. I spent more than last week, but last week was my cheapest Publix trip. Here's the breakdown.

CVS

Transaction #1

This week I started off with $10 ECB. I picked up my favorite eye shadow and some Colgate toothpaste for the kiddos and only paid $1.77. I saved $10.05, which is a 85% savings. I also earned $4 ECB. This was a total money maker.

Transaction #2

Here's what else I bought (well, minus transaction #1 in there too). I ended up with 2 packages of toilet paper and 3 packages of paper towels for only $7.65. I saved $36.00 with ECBs, MQs, and an extra CVS Q for $5 off $15 purchase from the scanner. An 82% saving on paper towels and toilet paper is not to shabby!

Target

We were in need of dog food this week. Luckily it was on sale and I had a coupon. I ended up paying $24.45 for it all and saved $27.40. Each item averaged out to $1.53 which is awesome with the dog stuff included.

Publix
Pic 1


Pic 2

So this week I bought a ton and it won't even fit in one picture! There were some killer deals. I even picked up some fresh shrimp (yes, I did have a coupon for it). I ended up spending $60.34 and saved $189.64 (which is my largest dollar amount of savings)! AWESOME!

Side story: I went grocery shopping Wednesday night and Mom went to Publix Thursday night. She had a $1 coupon and said, "Well it's only a dollar, but every little bit helps." The bagger then told her that just last night a lady came in and saved $189 and only spent $60. Mom then proceeded to tell him that that lady was her daughter. Too funny!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Weekly Roundup

Since I never blog anymore, I am going to start sharing my awesome finds once a week. So here's how I did this week. I hope it gets you excited about couponing, whether you want to start or want to get back into it!
Walgreens

Walgreens was a slow ad this week. I did get an awesome deal on toothpaste though without the ad. I used $15 of my Walgreens Register Rewards on Publix this week because there was nothing I needed that would roll them over before they expired. Walgreens is weird because you can't more coupons than items, but you can use a store coupon and a manufacturer coupon. This means you have to find some filler items. Luckily paper towels were on sale for 50 cents and we needed some. Toothpaste was only 34 cents and came with a freebie on top! My total at Walgreens this week was $3.08. I saved $8.22!

CVS - Transaction #1

This week was a great ad with lots of deals to roll over my Extra Care Bucks (ECB). I only paid $3.49 and saved $25.07. I also got $11.50 in ECBs back.

CVS - Transaction #2

I did really good and was only going to have to pay tax until I checked the clearance and found this cool toothbrush that sings for 2 minutes so you know how long to brush. I couldn't pass it up and figure I'll throw it in Carson's Easter basket. It was on clearance for $4.50. My total for the second transaction was $7.69 (toothbrush and then $1.71 in tax). I saved $22.88. I did earn $10 ECB too.

Publix - Groceries

This week was more of a stock up week at Publix. I did rock out my best grocery shopping ever there (with my kids accompanying...I MUST be crazy). First I have to say that the kids were good, but I didn't get to do my normal walk down every aisle looking at everything, coupons, and tearpads. I ended up missing one that would have saved me $2. I found it after the fact because as I was checking out Carson had to go potty. While I waited on him in the bathroom I saw the tearpad. The lady also didn't take my Walgreens store coupon which they normally do so I missed out on another $3. So keep in mind that my bill should've been $5 less, but I will live. I got all 72 items for only $15.29. I saved $121.53. Hooray for 89% savings and each item averaging to 21 cents! I LOVE couponing and saving money!

Friday, January 15, 2010

My New Hobby


My sister-in-law is a crazy couponer. She's been trying to get me to do it for a while now, but it all just seems like a cryptic language when using the websites she suggested. I finally buckled down and tried it though at the beginning of the year. Let me tell you...I absolutely LOVE couponing now! The photo above is from my trip to Publix today. How much would you pay for all of that? (It's too bad you can't really see everything because there is so much.) Publix would say you should pay $143.36. However, I only paid $48.38! I saved 77%! It averages out to be 65 cents per item! The only bad part is I no longer will be able to pay regular price for an item. So far I have saved $219.98! Thanks Alice!