Tuesday, May 31

Bakery Outlet = HUGE Savings!

Do you have a Bakery Outlet near you?

  Do you even know what a a bakery outlet is?

  If your looking to save some money on your grocery bill, and your not sure if you have one near, you should really look into it, it could save you quite a bundle.  Our nearest outlet is about 20 minutes away so each time I hit the mall, which is not real often I make sure that I can fit a visit into the bakery outlet nearby.  Our outlet is a Oroweat/Entenmann's outlet which
 not only offers those two brands but also Francisco, Thomas', Sahara, Old country as well as many others including not only bread products but cookies, pastries, fruit snacks, tortilla's and more.  Each visit you get your "punch card" punched for free items off future purchases. Check with your local store to see if they offer additional punches for being "green" and bringing in your own bags.  Our outlet will punch an additional $5 off your card for doing so. Each day they have "manager" specials, for example today with a $7 purchase you got to chose a loaf  of bread for FREE.  These outlets are great especially if you plan to buy a lot and freeze, which is what I do.  Most items are days within the suggested "best buy"date,  for example today I purchased 5 loaves of  bread for $1 each (normally about $3.79 each retail in stores) because the "best buy" date was today. 

Using my completed punch card I got 2 FREE items, a FREE item  for spending over the $7 and a array of great deals.
Total bill today was $22 for

I am so lucky!

Lucky for various reasons of course.  Lucky to have healthy little kids, a great husband (most of the time  LOL) a roof  over our head, great parents, of  course I am  lucky.

  But...today I am  especially lucky as today I found out I won a giveaway. 

 I swear I do not spend my days entering them, I enter my share but most from  blogs I already follow and or blogs that they follow and I have found.  So fun to find new blogger's.  I could literally spend my days reading them  all.  Such fabulous ideas shared, funny and heartbreaking stories, some you find a common bond with and can really relate and others you may not but may learn a thing or two.

So I follow Perfectly Imperfect, great site for those of  us who love all thing crafty  and or vintage.  Shaunna hosted a week of giveaways, each day with a different giveaway from  another blogger and or Etsy seller.  My win, a $20 store credit to Dulcitas Little Sweets, a cute little Etsy shop featuring vintage items, cake plates, and other handmade items.  Right up my Alley.  Thank you to Shaunna for hosting the giveaways, fun..fun!

Now what do I pick?  I love it all but have it narrowed it down to a few items.

Cottage-Inspired Love Birds: Gerald and Velma

Light Sage Shelf and Hanger

Pair of Cottage Style Gray Candlesticks

(all photos from  Dulcitas, Little Sweets for the Home)

What would you pick?

Sunday, May 29

Cottage Charm Giveaway Winner

Thank you all for entering my Cottage Charm Giveaway.  I have a winner Chosen by the True Random Number Generator.  And the winner is....

 Jessica Havican

Congrats Jessica!
I will be contacting you shortly.

Saturday, May 28

Jam Jars

I need jam jars and I want them cheap!  Anyone know where I can purchase canning jars for a reasonable price? They can be so expensive. 

  A couple of weeks back I made some Pepper Jelly (24 jars), think I blogged about it below.  Posted it in my status on Facebook and sold all of it in 2 days.  So the other day, totally not a sales pitch either, I post my status that today I had made more pepper jelly (6 jars) Strawberry Jam (12 Jars) and I had even made some coffee and brown sugar body scrub (6 jars).  Well.. orders started flying in.  Out of all that listed, I have 1 jar or Strawberry jam left and 2 jars of body scrub.

 I think I have my own little enterprise going... OK so maybe not an enterprise but you never know.

Friday, May 27

Vintage Note Cards

Photo from Kara Rosenberry

Recently I entered a blog giveaway at Kara Rosenberry Co. The Blog for a set of Vintage Note Cards.  A set of each, 4 different styles each set with a different vintage photo and theme.  Today I logged on to find out that I had won...so fun!  A huge "Thank You" to Kara and if you like what you see you should run on over to here Etsy store Kara Rosenberry Co. clever cards and whatnots and see all the wonderful things she has to offer.

Wednesday, May 18

Giveway Time {Cottage Charm Giveaway}

I am pleased to announce I am joining up with The Twice Remembered Cottage in the 5th annual Cottage Charm Giveaway.  This is a multi blog giveaway that runs from now till May 29th, 2011.  Run on over and check out all the participating blogs and enter to win at each one, at the moment there are 44 blogs and the list grows daily.  This is my second year participating, last year was so much fun I just had to do it again.  So now for my "Giveaway"...

A few closeups
A darling hand held mirror
Not vintage but lovely all the same.  A rose themed hand painted scene on canvas.

My giveaway would not be complete without something handmade by moi so I am including two pretty little tin ornaments.  I have many ornaments I sell locally and chose two that could be used on your Christmas tree and or anytime of the year.  I myself like to attach to a knob on a drawer or tie onto the bow on a package, so many places you could use these.

A sweet vintage inspired owl locket necklace. I bought two of these one for my winner and one for myself, and I wear mine often.

Cottage white cake plate (salad size) from Funky Vintage Lovely, I love the sundae cup as the base, so clever.  I found a glass dome that fits as though it was made for it. 

Also included is the vintage cream colored doily, a green wood item with handle (better picture above.  I am not quite sure what this is, my kids say its looks like a maraca but it is solid, kitchen item perhaps? ) Obtained from a local antique/consignment store. And lastly a pretty green vintage Avon floral milk glass perfume pitcher. 

Rules for Entering
I am offering you a few ways to enter, so you can enter once or up to four times.  Please leave a separate comment for each entry and if you do not have a blog (not needed to enter) please leave your email address in your comment so that I may reach you should you win. Because of high shipping costs, this giveaway is only available to residents of the United States and Canada.

1. Leave me a comment telling me what your favorite hobby is and why?
2. Become a new follower and leave me a comment telling me you are.  Of course if you already follow then leave me a comment telling me you already do.
3. Of all the items in my giveaway tell me what your favorite might be?
4. Blog this giveaway and link back telling me you have.

Winner will be announced May 29th, 2011

Thanks for playing...and good luck!

Edited on Friday 5/20 to add:
I have been informed by a couple of commenters that the green wood item I was questioning on what it was is in fact a vintage sock darner (for mending socks).  I had no idea and never would have guessed.  Thank you for clarifying that for me!

Tuesday, May 17

Got Pork?

O' my Goodness...we do!  My sister in law Molly recently had 7 pigs butchered and delivered some meat to us yesterday.  I can not even begin to find the words to "Thank" her.  She raised them, had them butchered and packaged and delivered it to us, and all free of charge to us.  Honestly I cannot even put a number to the amount of money she has saved us on our grocery bill with this act of generosity.  Our freezer had not even been plugged in for nearly 2 years (thank goodness it still worked) and now it is half full of pork.  She said we had better get to eating because...she is the doing the same for us with a Steer and a full Steer will never fit in there if we don't clear some of that pork out. Thank goodness he will not be ready to butcher until about August early September so until then it looks like we will be having our share of "the other white meat".  Just to give you an idea of what we got this is the info off the packing list, a few things I have NO IDEA what to do with, maybe you have a recipe you could share.
All number's are "packages" of meat.
9 pork shoulder steaks
17 center pork chops
4 loin pork chops
12 pork steaks
2 spareribs
2 neck bones (what on earth would you do with this?)
13 sausage
6 hams
19 bacon
4 pork shoulder hocks (again...not a clue)

If I had to buy all this at my local grocery store...imagine the cost. 
Thank you so much Molly!

Saturday, May 14

Help! Laundering a Cross-stitch

I picked up this darling vintage cross stitch today at a yard sale, in the frame for $1.  However it needs to be cleaned in the worst way.  The backing looks as if it was originally a linen color to begin with so not as dirty as appears in the picture (and a lot is visual dust that looks as tho it could be brushed off) but its pretty dirty.  Most of the aging appears to be on the reverse side of the frame.  Anyone have any tried and true ways to clean this without harming the stitching and or threading color?  Google has a million and one ideas I am  sure but if you have successfully cleaned one I would love to hear an actual testimonial. 
Thanks so much in advance
 I am  loving my dollar find.

CVS Cereal Deals

So I was a little late looking at the CVS ad as the current ad ends today.  So...having several cereal coupons in my stash the kids and I just ran down there to grab some deals on Kellogg's cereals.  Many of them  were on sale for $1.97 each and a a few I picked up were on sale for 2/$5 now even with my $1 off coupon off two I would not normally buy them  at $2 each but...my kids were with me and they NEVER are when I shop so I did cave...how can you fight them  when they are insisting you buy Mini Wheat's?  Not like it was Captain crunch.  I had a couple $1 off two coupons from  Sunday ads and if  you go to Kellogg's website and join,  there are many you can print online and more than once, which I did.  I also had a couple newspaper coupons for .70 off each of  the Raisin Bran which brought each box down to $1.27 so...today's bill was:
12 boxes of cereal with a combined regular price of $57.68
After ad sales and coupons my price was $19.36
for a savings of $38.32
The new ad starts tomorrow and is already available to view online at the CVS website, I looked at it very briefly but will be sure to get there much sooner than I did this ad campaign.

Wednesday, May 11

Garden Complete

well...just about complete. Everything is finally planted I just need to finish the fencing.  We have lots of little critters I need to fence out, skunks & jackrabbits, so just doing a short 2 foot wire fence.  This is the first year we are doing some raised beds, I have heard that raised beds are the way to go.  The remaining of the plants and all of the corn I planted in the ground.  Mixed the soil with some chicken manure and had some miracle grow pellets left so thought "can't hurt" so threw that on there too. 

Also the first year using straw as a mulch for the ground plants.  Last year when we lived at the house down the road the weeds we just unbearable.  I could not keep up with them and they quickly took over.  Hoping with different soil, and the straw it will really help, as well as help keep some moisture in the ground.  We are unable to install a water system for the garden itself such as drip line and related, we currently live on near 10 acres and we have NO water system such as a sprinkler system anywhere on the property. We have hoses upon hoses tied into together, to be honest its a huge pain! 

So...very excited to start to see some plants grow bigger.  Many of the items we planted we started inside from seed, the kids love to watch the progress of seeds as they grow. Hoping for a very plentiful season so we can enjoy fresh, "can" for later, and share with friends.  Our garden contains the following: salad cucumbers and pickling cucumbers, lemon cucumbers, zucchini, yellow crookneck squash and spaghetti squash.  A couple of pumpkin plants, watermelon, cantaloupe, orange flesh (no idea, I thought I bought honeydew and when I got home it was this) corn, beans, 7 different kinds of tomatoes, red bell, yellow bell and green bell peppers, jalapeno peppers, a few beets, trying Brussels sprouts see how that goes, and today I planted carrots, Swiss chard and lettuce.  I think that's it! Oh of course I planted sunflowers down one side and some flowers as well to make it look pretty!

Did you plant a garden?  What do you have in it that I don't have and what is your best gardening tip?  I am still pretty new to it (just a couple years) so would love to hear about yours.

Monday, May 9

Lookie What I Just Won!

How very excited was I a little bit ago to open an email notifying me that I won a blog giveaway.  Yay me!  So I wanted to thank Melinda over at Alabaster Rose Designs for brightening my day....big time! She has some amazing jewelry!

Sunday, May 8

Is there really such a thing as "Mother's Day"?

I know everyday is Mother's day as we are all blessed to be a mother. I am talking about a day of no whining, no fighting, a day where you don't hear MOMMMMM a hundred times, a day where one of your kids does not argue with you about something, you don't have to wash a dish, or clean up a thing.  If there is, it is not in this house and not this morning!  My husband is working and the kids are fighting, yup...another day in paradise!  Looking at the bright side... I did wake up to two handmade cards from my kids Carson and Ella, projects they made at school on handmade paper they made themselves...yes they are most definitely frame worthy.

This morning Carson my son in that tone that makes your neck cringe says to me "MOOOOOOMMMMMMM make me breakfast~!" to which my reply was "ummmm....is it not Mother's Day?  I think you need to make ME breakfast!"  So both kids ran into the kitchen and after some fighting and complaining I was presented with coffee with creamer and toast with butter.  Actually my favorite breakfast, and made by two of my favorite people!

We then proceeded to load up into the car and drive off to a local antique/consignment store.  They were closed but they had a big parking lot sale yesterday and had a pile of leftovers for FREE so the kids and I rummaged through what little was left.  I am sure my husband will just love more old crap in this house and I will hear "just because it was free didn't mean you had to bring it home".  I think my love of other people's junk is rubbing off on my kids, they were so excited going through it all.

We then came home and the 3 of us walked around the front and back yard and we as a team, made Mommy (me) a Mother's day bouquet clipping many of the varieties of flowers we have outside.  We then put them in a pitcher we had just picked up for FREE earlier in the morning (above picture).  It is only 10:15 am at the moment so not sure what the rest of the day will bring. I am sure more of the usual but...I am still so lucky to have them!

So...for those of you who are Mother's have a VERY Happy Day.  Whether it is doing something grand, or just "another day" in life of Mom!

Saturday, May 7

Today's Agenda...Jalapeno Pepper Jelly

I make this pepper jelly, Jalapeno pepper jelly and to be honest it is quite tasty! It is actually not spicy or "hot" rather a sweet, tangy flavor with maybe a tiny little "kick". Served over cream cheese with crackers or bread as an appetizer or even used a baste for poultry.  Everyone who tries it, loves it and I have had many request for more jars recently. My husband has been bugging for months to enter it this summer into the county fair, I don't know...we will see about that. 

Unfortunately, peppers are not quite in season.  A red bell pepper at our local Safeway is $2.99 each, ouch!  I already had some jars so at least I did not have the purchase of new ones this go around. So even without having to buy jars this first batch it was still quite pricey once all ingredients and pectin were purchased.

So I posted a status on Facebook taking orders at $5 a jar (jelly jar size) which is very reasonable giving the price of similar jelly's in the valley where we live.  Re-orders at $6 a jar but...if they return jars I will knock a $1 off the price going back to the $5 a jar.  I made 24 jars thus far this weekend and have already sold ALL of them.  Guess I need to cracking and making some more!! 

Wednesday, May 4

Moms Day Giveaway

Janet over at Shabbyfufu is hosting a great little giveaway on Mother's Day.  Unique one of a kind , handmade item, it is darling!  But...I will not tell you what she is giving away you must head on over there and check it out for yourself.  Click on the Shabbyfufu giveaway buttton on the sidebar to the right , yup right there, you found it.  And enter to win and sure, you could mention I sent ya! 

Can We Barter?

Several months ago I was asked by a friend and local business owner if I could make a sandwich board aka A frame sign for a gal who was looking for one.  They had originally asked this friend but with a full plate she told them "I know just the person"...which happened to be moi!  I contacted the person via email and we worked out what she wanted and in return we would "barter" for goods...fabulous!

Recently our city banned all A frame signs within city limits, we live in a very touristy town and I suppose the council thought they took away from the look of the city they were going for...whatever!  In all honestly, I think the whole idea is terrible.  You should be allowed to have a sign outside your door, in fact one our local antique shops reported in the first month of the ban that her business dropped by 30%.  It may seem as if I am going off topic but I am getting to the point.  Since the ban I thought rather than buying materials and having my husband create a new sign I would reach out and see if I could "recycle" a sign that could no longer be used.  I posted a Facebook status asking ...and BINGO I got one!  One less item in a landfill and saved me the cost of materials to make a new one.

So this week I found the time to make the sign.  A new coat of paint and using my handy dandy Cricut and some contact paper I made the letters.  Sealed it with a coat of clear spray paint and ...ta da, all finished.  I drove it out to the farm to hand it over to the new owner and she LOVED it!  I was so relieved.  I was given a tour of the grounds, the farm (in the county and can have an A frame sign) where they specialize in home grown, all natural products.  Free range chicken meat, non-gmo, eggs and pesticide free fruits, herbs and vegetables. What a great barter?  Healthy food for my family in exchange.  I mean we all need food right?  We all need to cut our grocery cost whenever we can, correct?

I think bartering is a fabulous idea and I know many people do it, but I don't think we do it enough. In today's economy where most of us are one paycheck away from being homeless I think more people should consider it and actually do it.  Think of the money we could save, we could all save.  If your neighbor is a hair dresser perhaps you could mow the lawn in exchange for a cut?  If you have a garden and a you know someone who has eggs, you could swap some veges for some eggs.  You get the idea. So the next time your in need of something and you know someone who can perhaps help you out maybe you should ask...."can we barter"?

Sunday, May 1

One Hundred and One Yard Sales

Well...I don't know exactly how many there were, but there was a lot! Annually, the first weekend in May a nearby town does one big yard sale so to speak.  An entire sub-division of homes is involved and there are literally, I am guessing over a 100 yard sales going on during this weekend in this little area.  My girlfriend and I went, on the hunt for...well, whatever we could find that we liked.  We estimate we physically went to about 30 yard sales in the span of 4 hours and drove by, real slow, another 30 or 40 maybe looking quickly for anything that caught our eye.  The parking was terrible as there were hundreds of cars parked, looking for parking and or driving around.  But...we did manage to fill my SUV and between the two of us, for less than $100!  I myself only came home with a few finds, being on a very very limited income I could not get "everything" I liked.  But the items I did come home with I got for a steal, in my opinion.

My first find.  A world globe.  I, for some reason have always wanted one and given the kids are now at the age where they are asking where is London? where is Australia? now I can show them.  I liked this one for several reasons.  It is a bit more "vintage looking" although it is not.  But, the water is not bright blue like modern day globes and this one lights up! And, I liked the base which has thermometer, barometer and some other meter I am not sure of.
  My yard sale price.....$2!  How could I pass that up?

I was on the hunt for a bench or chest, something I could put at the foot of our bed.  Something for storage and also something strong enough that my husband could sit on to put on his shoes.  I came across this vintage painted chest.  I like the detail on the front and the legs and to my surprise when I opened it, it was cedar!  The inside was unpainted and it still smells, bargain!  So...later this week I will be throwing a coat of white paint on this ,very excited about this find.  Asking $20 I got it for $15.

My final find of the day was a small vintage tiered table.  The gal told me that it was her mothers and had been in storage for more than 20 years.  I liked the size, the chippy blue paint, and I got it for $5.  I had no idea where I was going to put the thing when I got it home but home with me it went.

Total cost for the day a whopping $22, I probably spent more in gas to get there.