Saturday, June 26, 2010

sewing 101

Remember how I told you that I was going to do some sewing on Thursday? I actually had planned to make a sweater pillow (which didn't happen!), but got distracted with some other fabric I already had and recycling some pants and a skirt....Enough are some of my creations!

black and white pillow made from an old suit skirt! Recognize this Jen?

spur of the moment idea from fabric I already had- LOVE the texture on this one!

two pillows for our bed (just to change things up a little) made from old plaid pants....yes, i actually have worn those pillows! I added the buttons for a little detailing:)

total view of our "summer" bed- we usually have a beautiful duvet on there, but we were roasting @ night, so I used a little birthday moo-la to buy this cute coverlet for the summer months. It has a beautiful silky texture to it!
When I get inspired again, I will tackle that sweater pillow...


Thursday, June 24, 2010

Birthday purchases

I have been thinking that i should post more pictures instead of just text....but...
1. i am not a photographer.
2. while our camera is nice, it's not top-notch
3. sometimes i am just too lazy!

Alas, you are getting a post with pictures! Get excited because i don't get inspired very often! Want to see what I spent some of my birthday money on?

our new runner and "centerpiece"

view of 1/2 of the dining room
Can you tell that I am NOT a photographer? I think it would be awesome to have the talent and tools, but i just don't:) J is so much better at it than me, but he's in class! Anyway, we pretty much always leave our table set with a table cloth and often a runner because it's a hand- me- down and so the top is pretty scratched and the leg is all chewed by a dog! Haha, you would never know it when it's hidden under here! I love the brown polkadot runner and the vase with the "decorative balls." I will probably look back one day and think- why in the world did i buy decorative balls? But until then, i think it's pretty cute.

On an unrelated note, I have a bunch of errands to do today and then I am thinking about doing some sewing tonight! James has guys night with our community group guys and so i was thinking i should get myself into a project! I haven't done too much lately- since the painting tables thing. And since I am getting rid of a big bag of clothes that i just don't wear anymore, I decided to recycle some of the material and a sweater. I have seen sweater pillows a few times, but haven't attempted one yet. I will let you know how it's hoping it will be creative and look cool. As for more pictures to come? I am not sure if i can make that commitment yet or not:)


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Food Line

Have I ever told you that our apt. complex gives out free food once a month? It's a huge benefit to living in income restricted housing....and what a blessing it is! It has allowed us to live on a very low monthly food budget so that we can save, save, save. Lately, we have been purposely (or accidentally) one of the very last couples through the "food line." You might think oh how noble! But we really aren't at all. You know how Jesus said to his disciples, "If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last"? Well we have found out that he was totally right! (and by the way, i know that i am taking his words out of context- pretty sure we aren't serving anyone by getting free food?). When you go towards the end at food line- they are ALWAYS trying to get rid of the extra food! Awesome! And so we end up coming home with more bread, meat and other things than we would if we had been at the front! Shh...don't tell all our neighbors, ok?

Did you know that most of the dinners I cooked or am cooking this week had several things from food line? It's like that every week...thanks to the invention of the freezer! In fact, it's a game to find out what we actually paid for that we are eating! With couponing, generous parents and food line, most of our meals are almost free! Want to see some proof?
  • Monday- Pork loin (free-food line!), sauteed squash and zucchini (free-dad's garden!), rice (free- Grandma gave it to mom who gave it to us!), oranges (free- mom bush!)
  • Tuesday- Ham steak (free- food line!), broccoli ($.25- couponing!), potatoes (free- couponing!), oranges (free- mom bush!)
  • Wednesday- we got lazy sooooo we got carry out tonight :)
  • Thursday- steak (free- food line!), green beans ($.25- couponing), pears (free- couponing), rolls (free- couponing)
  • Friday- spaghetti with meat sauce (altogether $.100 including wheat pasta, sauce, and 1 lb. of ground beef-couponing and food line), some veggie from freezer (probably $.25)
  • Saturday- Out with Mom Bush and Sara?
  • Sunday- Chicken on grill ($1.50), rice (free- gma), veggie ($.25), oranges :)
So, total for 5 dinners...drum roll.......$3.50! That's an average of 70 cents per meal! If that doesn't convince you to start couponing, move to Village Manor and have an awesome family....I don't know what will! Happy Wednesday!


Monday, June 21, 2010

July, could you hurry up and come?

It's our running day-off....everyone needs one of those, right? I am hoping that it makes tomorrow's 3 miles easier. The heat here has been horrendous, so we have been sweating like crazy each night! Boo. Oh well, looking forward to spending time in SC, ATL and HI where we can jump in a pool or the OCEAN after a nice run:) Sounds great, doesn't it?

If you know anything about me, I am a planner- BIG time. I like to make lists and cross them off and plan out things way ahead of time....then I get to anticipate the event even more! For instance, we are going to the beach in July with my family! YAHOO! And the kids (even though we are all in our 20s....well, almost all, hah....and married, we are still the kids) are supposed to bring some snacks and drinks to share. What have I started piling in our guest room? You guessed it, snacks and drinks for the beach. Boy, I cannot wait to start vacation. I know J feels the same way- he is so ready to be done with his summer course (only 2 more weeks!) and i don't blame him. I have a countdown...only 8 more days of work until VACAY...its spread over 3 weeks, but STILL! I know I will miss my little girlies, but I am also so, so, so excited about all the fun we are going to have. July, could you hurry up and come?

Sorry if this post is lame, but it's what I am thinking about that's what you get! Hopefully something more exciting next time?


Friday, June 18, 2010


Today's saga-

This morning started out bright and early with a morning run. Aren't we committed? Haha, I don't think that we will make a habit of going that early, but we knew that we were having friends over for dinner and didn't want to run them out so to speak to go we decided to get up early. We ran 2.4 easy miles (and yes it actually finally felt easy!! yay!) and then headed home to get ready for work.

J took me today so that he could come back this afternoon and swim with the girls and I. I cannot even express how thankful I am that today he was with me- definitely God's sweet provision.


Well about 2 exits before the one we take to my work on I64, we heard a big thud. Not knowing what it was and not feeling any difference in the car, we figured we had simply run over some large object in the road. Soon after we saw tons of tire debris from a truck and naturally thought that we might have hit some without knowing. Then the car started sounding a little odd as we drove and J spotted the tire pressure probably know what's coming next. FLAT TIRE. Our front right tire was flat as a pancake. He quickly got over to the right side of the road and put on his flashers. I called the family I work for and explained that I would be late....of course they offered to come help change it and get us if we needed (they are seriously that sweet!). And James got on the phone to AAA (he has a card, but I don't- also God's providence!)

BUT before he could finish the conversation this van pulled up marked TRIMARC. James climbed out my side to talk to the guy who works for the city/state and offers FREE roadside assistance. I honestly had a brief moment where I thought this could be an angel sent by the Lord to help us. He not only helped J change the tire in record time, but also even had hand wipes to get the grease off J's hands- what service! I only ended up being 30 minutes late to work and J was able to take the car to get a new tire. Thanks Mr. Carter of Trimarc- you saved the day and we really appreciate it, but more than that thanks Lord for providing for us so abundantly! He is always taking such sweet care of us and today is just one tangible example of the Father's love for us!

So that's the story and although we had to spend unexpected money on a new tire, we are more than grateful to be safe and taken care of by our Heavenly Father:)


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

it's the Real Simple things in life....

It's the "real" simple joys in life that are the best! That's exactly how I feel once a month when I catch the first glimpse of my new Real Simple magazine in the mailbox. It's the only one I actually get in the mail and the only one I save (neatly i might add, thanks to my IKEA magazine boxes!). I love looking at other magazines too- Southern Living, Cottage Living, Better Homes and Gardens, Martha Stewart (do you see a theme?) - but there is just something about Real Simple that makes it better than the others. If you've never read one, well, you should probably check it out and maybe even get your own subscription. While you're at it, buy one for your mom or sister too! It's full of awesome organizing and house decorating tips, great recipes, best products for all kinds of things and plenty of other tidbits! I would write more, but my July issue is calling my name....


PS- you can also check out the Real Simple website right here!

Monday, June 14, 2010

I haven't posted too many deals lately-- mainly because life has been busy and although I have stayed within budget each week, i haven't found anything too crazy to post!


Have I ever mentioned how much I love Target? Seriously, they not only have fabulous people working there (at least at ours!), but they also have so much awesome stuff and awesome deals. Tonight, I walked out of Target with $27.49 worth of merchandise (mostly cleaning stuff) and do you want to know how much I paid? Guesses? NOTHING, not one cent, nada! It actually rang up that the cashier owed me $1.34 which she was totally baffled were the 3 managers that were called to help! HAH! In the end, they said that they would just call it even:) Fine with me! To top it all off, they were SO nice about it! Thanks Target!

In other news, J and I have officially started jogging. We always seem to get motivated, run for a few nights and then end up going away for the weekend or something and not starting again for 3ish weeks. It is an endless cycle, BUT this time we are determined is going to be different. So far we have run 2-2.5 miles for the last 8 nights! I am pretty proud. We were even in SC for this past weekend and faithfully ran every evening! I know that doesn't sound like a lot to those long distance runners out there, but since I have never really been a runner at all, I have to brag a little. Tonight's run was the easiest yet, despite the 90 degree temp outside. We have also been alternating between running at flatter places and running with hills. Our plan is to continue running the same distances (2- 2.5 miles) this week and up it to 3 next week....hopefully we can do it. We are also thinking about signing up for a 5K soon to keep us motivated:) Luckily, I have the best and most encouraging running partner who keeps me going:)

Well, I better jump in the shower before bed....another busy one tomorrow.


Thursday, June 3, 2010

My hope is built on nothing less...

Monday was our 2 YEAR anniversary! It was hard to believe as we watched our wedding dvd that 2 whole years have gone by--and yet sometimes it seems like we have always been married-like i can't remember my life without my dear, sweet husband! It was a truly great weekend- we went out for hibachi, saw a movie of my choice:), spent Sunday paddling down a creek in a tandem kayak and swimming, went to church, grilled out, had coffee out, went for a walk and relaxed! James got me beautiful orange roses and a huge bag of fresh cherries that I had been coveting last time we were at Fresh Market! How sweet:)

The weekend, however, was not without its mishaps! On Sunday, James forgot that he had a hole in the pocket of his swim trunks, inserted his cell phone that traveled all the way down his leg and into the creek. I guess it wanted to go swimming too? We are trying the rice home remedy and slowly it seems to be gaining turns on now, will call someone, but no screen? So, back in the rice it went this last night:) At some point, I suppose we will give up hope. He's having to write down his friend's numbers to be able to call them-WHAT? It's so funny to think that before cell phones, we did this ALL the time. People had these things called address books or they remembered their friend's numbers. Weird. Hah.

Mishap #2- While we were kayaking, we decided to stop on the side of the creek and set up our camping hammock for a little while- just to enjoy the view. James swam across with the hammock and set it up and then I followed. We sat for a few minutes until suddenly the rope snapped and we crashed to the ground. James walked away with minor scratches on his back while my leg was fairly wounded and bruised. Ouch. Note to self- hammock is weaker when WET. Ooops. Afterwards, James remembered reading that somewhere, but it was too late.... At any rate, we will be returning said hammock.

And mishap #3 (hoping they only come in 3s)- just as we were about to turn off our wedding dvd on Monday, our tv screen went completely white. After trial and error, we figured out that everything works (sound, changing channels, playing a dvd), except the screen. The sad thing is that this is not an old tv- It is actually our 3rd one since we have gotten married (is the Lord trying to tell us something?)!! Our first tv was one that James had in his bedroom growing up- it was super old and you had to frequently slam the side of it because the sound would go out and that was the only way to fix it! Finally, no amount of slamming worked and we got rid of it. Graciously, my grandma was getting rid of a tv and donated it to us! We only had it for a few months before it would no longer turn too was old, but still! So we pooled some Christmas money last year and bought a cute little 19" flat screen. Perfect- and it would last us for a long time! Of course right after the one year warranty was died. Sooooo, we are tv-less for awhile. I am pretty sure it won't be #1 on our priority list to replace, so we may be tv-less for quite some time. We don't really watch it very often anyway, BUT now we can't use our wii either- boo! I guess we will be doing more reading in the coming months?

After everything started breaking and I felt like crying, James sweetly reminded me that our hope is not in earthly things. They will break and pass away, but our hope is in the Lord and He is everlasting. He was right and knew that I needed to hear that gentle encouragement. (Thanks, husband!) It made me think of that hymn- My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus blood and righteousness....And so we will live cell phone screen-less, hammock-less (until the new one comes) and tv-less for awhile:)

In other thoughts- it's my day off and this morning I am hoping to be extra productive (once i finish sucking down my coffee)! Here's my to-do list for the morn:
  • time in the Word
  • shower
  • clean bathroom
  • sweep and mop apt./ vacuum carpets
  • laundry (i only have 1 load to do, i think)
  • change sheets (love clean sheet day!)
  • clean kitchen (esp. sink)
  • bake cookies
  • dust apt. (hate this)
  • general de-clutter and put away sweep
  • organize medicine drawer (way too messy for me!)
  • mail birthday present to brother!!
All written out that looks like a lot! Good thing I have my mama's genes! Off to work...