Saturday, July 30, 2011

Sharing a wonderful blog

I have taught so many children over the 17 years with so many different diagnoses and levels of health and abilities. I am always reminded of the story "Welcome to Holland" by Emily Perl Kingsley which compares the arrival of a child with a disability to making plans to take a vacation to Italy and being told when your plan lands "Welcome to Holland."
Most families are extremely lucky to never experience Holland like this mother describes. In my family, we have had a couple of incidents, one 2nd cousin with Down's Syndrome & a 3rd cousin born completely blind. Michael's family had a recent experience with the loss of a baby by the name of Maggie who was a distant cousin. Maggie's parents kept a blog describing their journey through pregnancy, diagnosis of Maggie, Maggie's birth, and the passing of Maggie. Joy, Maggie's mother, recently posted her views on healing. She & Stephen are so eloquent in their pain. Throughout their journey, they have never lost sight of the big picture - God is in control. I hope you will enjoy their story as much as I have.

Our baby girl

Friday, July 1, 2011


Am I extreme couponing?

I wouldn't say extreme couponing. I'm just saving money. I won't go to a bunch of stores. I went to two stores yesterday - Wal-Mart & Tom Thumb. I'm using some apps that give digital coupons & one that helps me track the paper ones. But I only buy what I need. I used yesterday and saved $3.25. Also, cellfire allows you to add more savings to your reward cards. I actually saved over $20 @ Tom Thumb! It's a little exciting!

I had to buy a new smoke/CO2 detector for $38 and in a roundabout way it was free because of my savings yesterday. I was excited; Michael thought I was a little crazy but if it works... I'm also going to keep close track of my savings using Quicken.

You know what they say “Curiosity killed the cat - satisfaction brought him back!”

Oh, yeah - don't forget to go to the manufacturer's websites and like them on FB because they have some coupons there that are exclusive.

I set up a 2nd email account just for coupons & sales. This way I can sign up for any website and not worry about junk mail as much because it’s just gmail and not my Windstream account. I know it’s kind of crazy but it’s the best way for me to keep my sanity when it comes to all of those emails!

A hard part for me is tracking sales. When you live in the country it’s hard to get sale ads. Plus your store choices are limited. I won’t drive to kingdom come to save money especially when gas is so expensive! I only go to Gainesville so my choices are Wal-Mart & Tom Thumb. Sometimes going to CVS can be a deal too.

One of the things I learned yesterday was in my shopping list, I need to note how many of each item has to be purchased in order to qualify for the coupon. Also, don’t give up on using a coupon. If you have to, ask to see the manager. I had a coupon for 2 free dog treats with the purchase of dog food. When I picked up the items, I read & reread the coupon to make sure I picked up the right things. When the cashier scanned the coupon, the register kept kicking it out. I asked for the CSM who read the coupon, verified my items, and gave me the $5! It was worth it!

Will I do this again?
Yes, definitely! It’s going to be hard when I’m working full-time but in the long-run it is worth it!