Thursday, January 28, 2010

Tip-ful Thursdays

Time for a tip today!  First, with the financial theme for this month, Read David Ramsey's books!  They will help...

Make yourself stop when you shop & got to consignment shops if you want to find good deals.  Then you will spend a lot less & come back with more for you money.  You won't feel guilty paying $2.00 for Kate Spade designer shoes that usually run ever $150 on sale.  Granted there is a bunch of sorting through 80's junk & fads that should have NEVER been big, but that's your advantage--you can find real gems.  Like shoes never worn with tags still on them & designer clothes.  Without killing your bank. 

Just also be careful with the housewares & books.  Buying too much can also rack up the money there.  Really be sure you can use what you find.  Again, if you've gone through your closet & cleared it out, you know what you have & what you don't--also you will know what you actually need against what you desire.

I ask myself, "Ok, I really like this pair of shoes, this skirt & etc.  What does it go with?  Does it fit my body style?  Do I like the colors?  DO I have shoes that will match?  DO the shoes I am about to purchase go with what I have?

I recently realized I didn't have any sandal shoes that were brown & that I didn't have anything that didn't look frumpy with skirts (for brown shoes)  So, instead of going to payless or other shoe stores, I went to Goodwill & found three pairs of designer leather shoes (brown) in my size & paid $20 for all of them.  I was sad that a pair of cowboy shoes didn't fit, but--hey--you have to be honest & not buy what doesn't fit, no matter how much you want it...they may get some later.

But, I've found I still need to stop myself.  I went to get the shoes & the skirt I really liked but didn't buy earlier.  I decided I really wanted it, so I was glad to still see it there.  (See, I didn't get it & went back after thinking about it--that's the first thing to stopping compulsive shopping).  I did buy a few other pairs of shoes that I think I needed.  I replaced a pair of brown boots that the soles are worn & leak.  I also found a couple shoes I wanted.  But I paid very little money for them, so I stopped & tried them all on & decided which ones worked & which didn't. Plus, we have set how much I can spend per week.  I can't buy anything for a few weeks now, but that's OK.  I feel good (FINALLY) about what I bought & I don't feel guilty.  I got rid of all the older clothes that won't fit anymore!!  I will be donating them to either Goodwill or if I can find a place to donate clothes to Haiti, I will give them for that. 

So, I guess you don't have to stop spending, you have to know what you spend where & STOP YOURSELF....have a limit & know when you can shop again.  Plus, realize you will screw up, but don't use it as an excuse--do something to make it better.  Know what is coming in & going out.  It will help you realize how & when & what you are spending your money on.

Also, stay warm all of you in the way of the big winter storm!!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Wonderfully Funny Wednesdays

Well, things are going well today.  I got three loads of laundry done (still got more to do though) but put away all the clothes from trips & the laundry today!!  Yay, my room looks nice.  I went through my clothes--it took through today to do this & have a huge garbage bag full of clothes that either I don't wear or don't fit.  The closet looks so much better!  Got rid of shoes too!  Makes for a great hump day!

Speaking of Wednesdays....its time for a good joke or funny story.  Let's see what  I've found:

A man calls a company and orders their 5-day, 10 lb. weight loss program.
The next day, there's a knock on the door and there stands before him a voluptuous, athletic, 19 year old babe dressed in nothing but a pair of Nike running shoes and a sign around her neck.
She introduces herself as a representative of the weight loss company.
The sign reads, "If you can catch me, you can have me."
Without a second thought, he takes off after her.
A few miles later huffing and puffing, he finally gives up.
The same girl shows up for the next four days and the same thing happens.
On the fifth day, he weighs himself and is delighted to find he has lost 10 lbs. as promised.
He calls the company and orders their 5-day/20 pound program.
The next day there's a knock at the door and there stands the most stunning and beautiful woman he has ever seen in his life.
She is wearing nothing but Reebok running shoes and a sign around her neck that reads, "If you catch me you can have me."
Well, he's out the door after her like a shot.
This girl is in excellent shape and he does his best, but no such luck.
So for the next four days, the same routine happens with him gradually getting in better and better shape.
Much to his delight on the fifth day when he weighs himself, he discovers that he has lost another 20 lbs. as promised.
He decides to go for broke and calls the company to order the 7-day/50 pound program.
"Are you sure?" asks the representative on the phone. "This is our most rigorous program."
"Absolutely," he replies, "I haven't felt this good in years."
The next day there's a knock at the door; and when he opens it he finds a huge muscular guy standing there wearing nothing but pink running shoes and a sign around his neck that reads, "If I catch you, you are mine!!!"
He lost 63 pounds that week. 

A smart wife will always ask her husband's opinion - after she has made up her mind.

My wife has a terrible memory - she never forgets anything.

My wife wanted to see the world, so I bought an atlas.

Husband: You have to admit that men have much better judgement than women.
Wife: You're right. You married me and I married you.

Fred: Have you ever seen one of those machines that can tell when someone is telling a lie?
Joe: Seen one? I married one!

I don't need to buy an encyclopedia - my wife knows everything.

Hope this lightened the day for did for me!

Have a great Wednesday & don't forget--Friday is almost here!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Quotable Tuesdays

So its been an exciting day...more so than usual.  My hubby is home sick with a stomach bug.  The neighborhood kitty we take care of had to go to the vet.  He had a HUGE abscess on his cheek & it smelled like rotting flesh.  Come to find out some animal took a chunk out of his cheek & it was so infected he has uckies oozing out of it (plus it might have gotten into his system).  So, he has no fur on that side of his face with a huge nasty, smelly hole that needs to get over its infection before it will close up.  He's also wearing one of those "cones" to stop him from scratching it (aka "the cone of shame" for those who have seen "UP").  I feel so sorry for him because I can't make it better & he's a cat; I can't tell him what is happening & how it will get better.  It's not so bad because I was going to bring him in for the weekend due to a storm heading our way.  At least I also know he doesn't have any diseases my other kitties can get.  He's actually very heathly (other than the owie infection) for an outdoor cat.  He has impecable teeth.

Well that's my day.  Now onto Quotable Tuesdays....I bet we all need some pick-me-up quote to keep you going the rest of this week.

The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company... a church... a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past... we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our Attitudes.
  Charles R. Swindoll quotes

Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.

So, take some time to think about these quotes.  And have a great day.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Monday Madness

So, again, its Monday.  Sorry to all of you for not blogging on Thursday & Friday.  Thursday was littered with storms in the afternoon, so much so that we kept getting power surges & so, my computers had to be unplugged.  Friday was the day my hubby came home & I was obviously glad to see him, so I didn't even think about blogging (sorry ladies!!) 

So, here we are on madness this week.  Except for the bedroom & needing to unpack my hubby's stuff for him.  The kitchen is clean & I got TWO, count 'em TWO loads of dishes in the dishwasher on Friday to catch up with the mess.  I also may have stayed up too late on Wednesday cleaning:  until 3am!  I completely got on a roll & lost track of the time.  How crazy!  Just goes to show you how if I didn't have a hubby I would completely forget about sleep until  I was exhausted & just how much I am a night owl!

I hope you all are getting help from these blogs.  On the topic of financial security & stopping the over shopping tendencies, I have gotten a book called:  "To Buy or Not To Buy, Why We Over-shop & How to Stop" by April Lane Benson.  I also purchased Some David Ramsey books:  "Total Money Makeover" and its workbook and "Financial Peace Revisited," "Financial Peace Planner" and "How to Have More Than Enough."  I also bought an digital copy of Quicken Deluxe 2010 to help keep track of money & how I shop. It came at a small price, but with the way I have been spending like I shouldn't, I think its an investment for the future to stop this while its small & not littered with maxed out credit cards. 

Good news, I paid off the credit cards I did use to purchase with the money we had.  Then, I cut them up--all of them.  Even the Victoria's Secret Card--I love that store, but I need to stop buying on credit & ASK before I buy, buy, buy.  Granted, I have some nice things, but I NEED to go through my closet!!  That is the goal of today:  make room for the stuff I have & really do a check on what I want vs. what I need.  Oh, the book by April Benson is helping.  Its making me find out why I overshop with a journal and then is giving me tips on how to stop that emotional reaction that is unhealthy & learning to deal with it positively instead of by spending & hurting me and my whole family.  My hubby was supportive & knows I'm learning something important.  In fact, he's glad I recognize I need to fix it instead of others in my family who think its just a hobby.  Unless you are filthy rich & get millions in dollars from savings interest a week or month, then shopping should NOT be your hobby!!  In fact, even then, shopping as a hobby is a great way to drain those millions (look at Britney Spears & the late Michael Jackson for example--their overspending has hurt them bad;  even brought on depression & other issues). 

My hubby & I have agreed to also get rid of my debit card to our joint account and open another joint account here and put money in it for food, gas, and some extra spending money for me.  (Like twenty bucks a week if I'm not frugal with the food money budgeted).  I think this is a good start for me.  That leaves the other account set up for bills, rent, insurance, loans and savings.  I think with my habits, that sounds fair.  It will curb my need to shop & let me have the ability to shop for food & a little something extra for myself each week--that $20 includes if I want a Starbucks, something clothing/accessory wise, hobby stuff, going out to lunch, etc.  So, I can save up if I want to or spend it.  Its making me learn about money management that  I should have learned as a child.  And believe me, we will be making sure our kids know all about money management!  I'm finding out a massive majority of parents have forgotten this little nugget of a life lesson and expect their kids to learn it in college.  HA!!  I'm still trying to force myself to learn it now and it hurts!  I would have much rather learned it early & have good financial sense now! 

So, my Monday madness is closet cleaning I guess!!  You should try it too, once in a while.  Get rid of what doesn't fit.  Don't say, "Oh!  I will diet and get back into it!  You know you will just put it away and forget about it, so get rid of it & save up to buy a few new things when you DO LOSE THE WEIGHT!!"  See it as taking up valuable space that could be for something better down the road.  Those items are just a blaring reminder that you aren't what you want to be.  The first step to getting to a better weight is not being depressed because being all melancholy eats up the energy you would have to exercise.  Get rid of it!

  Besides, unless you are pregnant, you should not be hanging onto clothes that haven't been worn in a year. You haven't worn it, which means you probably aren't comfortable wearing it everyday. The only other exception is winter coats and formal gowns (unless you have like a closet-full of gowns, then get rid of some).  If you go visit somewhere cold or you have had a warm spell the past year, keep them!  It can get cold in some places!  It was in the sixties in FL when we were there this winter!!  Its usually mid to high 70's and above!  With dresses, especially formal ones, you never know when you will need them & as long as they fit (ahem!  You know what to do if they don't--give them away!!) they are good to keep around.  Have a few formal, casual, cocktail, maybe a full-length or two.  Just remember, don't let those dresses take up a huge amount of closet space.  Put them in another room--along with out of season coats.

So what kind of things get you hopping this Mad Monday??  Post them below!  Have a great day!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Quotable Tuesdays

He's some little quotes for today:

"Tell me I'm clever, Tell me I'm kind, Tell me I'm talented, Tell me I'm cute, Tell me I'm sensitive, Graceful and wise, Tell me I'm perfect-- But tell me the truth".

Shel Silverstein

"The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four Americans are suffering from some form of mental illness. Think of your three best friends. If they're okay, then it's you."

- Rita Mae Brown

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards".
- Soren Aabye Kierkegaard
 I know its not much, but I've got a lot to take care of that came up...back to blogging tomorrow!!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Monday Madness

It's Monday again!  Yay!  I'm in a great mood this week.  Though I will miss my hubby who is gone on a business trip for a bit.  Of course, as the good Domestic Diva-in -training that I pack for him (cuz we all know guys aren't always good at knowing how or what to pack!!).  I am hoping to have the house looking even more amazing when he gets home at the end of the week. I did the dishes on Sunday so that removes one HUGE chore today--no morfe dishy pile up anymore!!  I am still trying to organinze the office room, since we just moved recently to a smaller house in a new state after his & my layoffs.  So, organization has been key; along with curbing my shopping habit from having a job.

Speaking of shopping.  I am going to tell myself today "I don't need new clothes or exciting things; I am satisfied."  I have enough already.  I will tell myself  "It's not worth having to go back to work!"  and  "Hubby would like to do nice little things for me if  I would stop shopping!"  or  "I don't need to shop to feel important!"

I am hoping this will change my perspective.  We plan on setting financial goals when he gets back from the biz trip.  That will be great because then I can add:  "No, I don't want _____ now;  I am saving for ______ later." 

I know talking to yourself sounds kinda crazy, but the psychology books I read in a course at my university explained that doing this helps "reprogram" your brain in a way.  You see, we have emotional triggers that become a habit & we pick them up starting as a child.  So, you have to tell yourself something new until it becomes the norm.  Much like any chore or action:  the more often it is done, the less you have to "think" or talk about it--it comes naturally after a while.  The same goes for the mental habits.  Telling yourself you are worth it, you don't need to shop, etc. helps your brain readjust what should be done when you feel down or that trigger hits.  The normal reaction changes if you force it to (its the getting it to change that is work & why speaking out loud helps you break the mental cycle!). 

So, onward with the music & making my house look amazing & getting my hubby's stuff all packed for him!! 

Happy Monday &  stay away from the madness!!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Fabulous Fridays!!!

Ok, ok I know I'm late today on this...most of you are probably not on this late.  Today was crazy.  My hubby got home at 2am (yes, that's 2am) from work.  I stayed up cleaning & working on some clothes recycling projects.  I will post pics of them on Monday. 

For any of you who want some Do It Yourself go to & look up Threadbangers.  You will love all their ideas!  Check out Working Class Foodies as a help too..On a finance note, recycling old clothes that don't fit is a great way to zip up your wardrobe fore practically nothing!  I made a toy for the cats & a new scarf for me!  Save old T-shirts, nice shirts, pants & others.  You may even be able to not just make wardrobe items, but also blankets & quilts...even pillows! 

Save old cloth napkins (that look nice) or buy them together to make a square & then put hte two sides right side together.  Sew three sides & then stuff with: old pillow stuffing or stuffing from a falling apart stuff animal, down feathers, etc.  I encourage you to be creative...I made some things without a pattern!!  IT was so fun to take a break & watch something while I made something new.  Just as much of a rush as I get from shopping (ah ha!  You got it, my alternative high to shopping!!) I'm also finding other ways to fill my time.

I have been getting Glamour magazine for the past year & have signed up for their new Body section with viable workouts & food planning (not like a starving diet).  Go to & click on Body by Glamour.  Its actually very useful & they have audio workouts for every body part you could imagine, done by exercize professionals.  They have great videos & slides to show you how to do the exercises & daily tracking for both food & exercises.  Plus they have a progress tracker with a chance to set your weight goal & update your stats weekly (i.e., weight & measurements-which effect your bmi).  S, get in on the program if you want.

Also, don't forget to do something for yourself this weekend (don't buy anything for you, something free or cheap!)  Maybe do some research on a new hobby or just sleep in a little.  Either way, make yourself feel special & make some family members feel special too.   Have a great weekend!  See you Monday!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Tip-ful Thursdays!!

Its Thursday again & its time to give you some tips.  This month is focused on financial tips now that I know I need the help as I'm sure you do too! 

What I've learned this week is helpful to be sure.  Here are some tips for the shop-aholic prone homemakers out there (you know, those of us who have found shopping as a bad hobby)...  I've discovered some tips to help you.

1.  Credit cards...if you have more than three, choose all but three to cut up.  Choose only one store you purchase frequently from & save card for point earning.   Then put them in your husbands wallet.  The wallet will be with him at work & so you can't shop when he's not have to ask for it!  Also, make sure to pay more than the minimum balance on card so they actually get paid off!!

2. Bills...know what you have coming in & what is going out!!  That will help you not want to shop!  Know what should be in your savings accounts as well.

3. Online shopping...DO NOT shop online without someone else there!  Its dangerous because you don't always pay attention to shipping costs.  Plus, admit it to us all:  eBay & amazon are addicting with their great deals! (stay away from etsy without a friend as well--and not a shoppy friend).  In fact, my hubby has the password to both my eBay & paypal so I don't use it & I'm thinking about having him change the amazon one too if I can't curb the shopping by next week! 
    Always ask yourself?  Do I need this?  I also like to say daily:  "I have enough clothes for all seasons.  I have everything I want.  If I need something, I shoudl tell my hubby." "NO, I don't need this!!" I repeat this whenever I get the urge now to get something new for the sake of newness.

4. Store shopping...if you have trouble at stores, don't go in alone!!  Stay out & only "window shop" after the store is closed (and if they don't have a store online!!)  Ask yourself (again): Do I need this?  Wuld I be ashamed if my husband knew I was purchasing these items?  I also like to say:  "What will I use this for?"

5. Grocery shopping...GET A MEAL PLAN!!  Its the best way to not over-buy with food.  Go to  &set up your free account.  You can create printable calendars & even put in recipes so you have them at your fingertips!!  Plan any special meals ahead of time & don't go out to eat unless you plan for it in your budget & meal spontaneous I want a restaurant meal!!

6.Finances...track your spenditures.  I know, it could be painful to see how much you spend on yourself, but it is a must to stop the cycle.  Also, don't let yourself be the finance manager...let your hubby do it so there is some automatic accountability.  He will know when money leaves the bank account.  Also, give him access to your credit cards by issuing him one (as long as he's not a shopaholic too!!)  If both of you have problems, go to your local college/university and find someone with a finance degree to help you for an internship or job experience.  Its cheaper & helps his/her career!!

7.Set goals...all that big stuff you want or need, its not going to happen if you burn through all the free cash left over every month!  So, set some goals after you've got your finances in order!  Find out what you want, how much it costs & when you need/want it.  Also, make sure you let the family know about it & have a meeting so everyone can join in & make desicions about the big purchases!  It helps give you perscpective!

8.Hobby...FIND ONE!  No, shopping cannot be your hobby!  Find something you enjoy.  You will be less likely to shop if you have other things that cause excitement & joy! Here are some choices:  blogging, writing, poetry, songwriting, online games, classic movie-watching, piano playing, painting, photography, scrapbooking, reading, drawing, Do-It-Yourself projects, sewing, quilting, knitting, crocheting, clockworks, woodworking, graphic desig, website building, musical instrument, gardening, pet walking, audio production, playwriting, etc.  You can also join some local clubs to get out & feel more active & fulfilled.   There are tons of groups & clubs.  Ask around & find out what you can do!

Those are some basics for I find more I will give more tips!  Until then,  have a great Thursday & remember--you don't need to shop to be happy!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Wonderfully Funny Wednesdays!

I went a-searching for some funnies today.  Take some time out to laugh!  It makes the day a lot better.  While you're at it...why not have just two--count 'em TWO--pieces of  your favorite chocolate (that's not two bars but two pieces!) while you relax & read these jokes for a few minutes!

Being a Woman

Why it is so cool to be a woman
-We can get rid of leg hair without pretending that we do a lot of cycling/swimming or any other sport that would require aerodynamic legs.

-We absently hum tunes from musicals without anyone being suspect of our sexuality.

-When we buy a vibrator it is glamorous. When men buy a blow up doll it's pathetic.

-Should we wake up looking like something the cat dragged in, we can fix it with cosmetics.

-We can have partners that are years younger than us without being called dirty old perverts.

-We can scare male bosses with mysterious gynecological disorder excuses.

-Systems support men always return our calls, and are nice to us when we blow up our computers.

-We know that Tetris is the computer game to end all games.

-We got off the Titanic first.

-Our boyfriend's clothes make us look elfin and gorgeous. They look like complete dorks in our clothes.

-We have total control over our eyebrows.

-We can be groupies. Male groupies are stalkers.

-It's cool to be a daddy's girl. It's sad to be a mommy's boy.

-We can cry to get out of speeding fines.

-The thrill of surprising people by being good at darts... and pool... and football.

-We live longer, so we can be cantankerous old biddies wearing inappropriate clothes and shouting at strangers... men die earlier so we get to cash in on the life insurance.

-We know that games are fun, but don't believe there's a direct correlation between the size of our scores and the size of our... womanhood.

-Taxis stop for us.

-We get drunk quicker and cheaper.

-We have no desire to arrange our possessions in alphabetical order. Ever.

-We've never fancied a cartoon character or the central figure in a computer game.

-It does not enhance our social standing to understand the inner workings of a 'ruck' (or any other football thing) or how to fix a car or other machinery/tech stuff. But we look incredibly cool if we do.

-We never recognize ourselves in aspects of Mr. Bean. Ever.

-We don't look like a frog in a blender when dancing.

The Parking Ticket

I went to the store the other day. I was only in there for about five minutes, and when I came out there was a motorcycle cop writing a parking ticket. So I went up to him and said, 'Come on buddy, how about giving a guy a break?'
He ignored me and continued writing the ticket. So I called him a stupid idiot. He glared at me and started writing another ticket for having bald tires!
Then I really got angry at him. He finished the second ticket and put it on the car with the first. Then he started writing a third ticket!
This went on for about 20 minutes. The more I abused him, the more tickets he wrote. I didn't care. My car was parked around the corner.

And here are some unconventional "tips" to a cleaner house!

If a room clearly can't be whipped into shape in 30 days--much less 30 minutes--employ the Locked Door Method of cleaning. Tell anyone who tries to go in the room that the door is intentionally locked.

CAUTION: It is not advisable to use this tip for the bathroom.
Time: 2 seconds
No home should be without an ample supply. Not only is it handy for plumbing repairs, but it's a great way to hem drapes, tablecloths, clothes, just about anything. No muss, no fuss.

Time: 2-3 minutes
If you think ovens are just for baking, think again. Ovens represent at least 9 cubic feet of hidden storage space, which means they're a great place to shove dirty dishes, dirty clothes, or just about anything you want to get out of sight when company's coming. (just don't forget about them & use the oven!)

Time: 2 minutes
Like Secret Tip 3, except bigger. CAUTION: Avoid hiding flammable objects here.

Time: 2.5 minutes
Like Secret Tip 4, except even bigger.

Time: 3 minutes
No bed should be without one. Devotees of Martha Stewart believe dust ruffles exist to keep dust out from under a bed or to help coordinate the colorful look of a bedroom. The rest of us know a dust ruffle's highest and best use is to hide whatever you've managed to shove under the bed. (Refer to Secret Tips 3, 4, 5.)

Time: 4 minutes
The 30-Minutes-To-A-Clean-House method says: Never dust under what you can dust around.

Time: 3 minutes
Don't use them. Use plastic or paper and you won't have to.

Time: 1 minute
This secret tip is brought to you by an inventive teenager. When this teen's mother went on a housekeeping strike for a month, the teen discovered you can extend the life of your underwear by two ...if you turn it wrong side out and, yes, rerun it.

CAUTION: This tip is recommended only for teens and those who don't care if they get in a car wreck.
Time: 3 seconds
If an article of clothing doesn't require a full press and your hair does, a curling iron is the answer. In between curling your hair, use the hot wand to iron minor wrinkles out of your clothes. Yes, it really does work, or so I'm told, by other disciples of the 30-Minutes-To-A-Clean-House philosophy.

Time: 5 minutes (including curling your hair)
Stick to the middle of the room, which is the only place people look. Don't bother vacuuming under furniture. It takes way too long and no one looks there anyway.

Time: 5 minutes, entire house; 2 minutes, living room only
The key here is low, low, and lower. It's not only romantic, but bad lighting can hide a multitude of dirt.

Time: 10 seconds
Get an old-fashioned waterbed. No one can tell if those things are made up or not, saving you, oh, hundreds of seconds over the course of a lifetime.

Time: 0
Forget one and two. Concentrate on three.

Time: 1 minute
If you already knew at least 10 of these tips, don't even think about inviting a Martha Stewart type to your home

Hope this made you laugh out of your chair!  Now get up & get some work done on this "hump" day!  (OH & post your funnies below!) 

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Quoteable Tuesdays

It's time for our weekly little quote.  Enjoy taking a few minutes to think about these ones.  It may help you continue on when life may seem uneventful or when you stand in the midst of ridiculing voices for your decisions or for the times when we fall flat on our faces seemingly while everyone is watching.

Do not wait to strike till the iron is hot; but make it hot by striking.
William B. Sprague

Our greatest glory is not in never falling but in rising every time we fall.

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.
Albert Einstein

Constant dripping hollows out a stone.

 Got any good quotes for today?  Post them in the comments!  Put some in every Tuesday for all of us homemakers!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Monday Madness

Welcome back to a new week!!  And I'm glad its a new one-I feel like I let the chores pile up a bit on the weekend.  OK, I was a little naughty & let the dishes go.  I made the excuse I didn't feel well (which I didn't) but I could have stood there & washed some!  So, goal for next weekend:  NO EXCUSES!  Take 1 day off & then get some basic chores done on the other day! 

As you can see, none of us are perfect--its a learning process for us "Domestic Divas"-in-training!  I just caused myself a Monday Madness (and not the good kind).  SO off to do extra work, but with fun because I've got my trusty favorite tunes on to help!

Found some money left on a debit gift card & did a little shopping for myself!  Woohoo!  That is something I will miss by not working, but I have to cut back.  I will be thrift/second hand & discount store shopping now!  Its worth it to stay at home & I will now tell myself that each time I want to buy:  Do I want to go back to work to have something like this?  Do I need it?  If I can't ask my hubby for us to save for it is it necessary or something I want--Do I still want to save for it?  If the answer is no for any of these questions I WILL NOT BUY IT!!   Then I need to write a list of what I really need & want with my hubby--make a plan for the next few years to stave off the shopping fever I & I know alot of us get into.  So, this is my confession & resolution: stop the shopping!  I will put up sticky notes in rooms to remind me & in my wallet.  Also I will watch "Confessions of a Shop-a-holic" again & again until I see myself as the main character (maybe not as bad but potentially so) and tell myself I need to be good with money!   I will talk with my husband about getting David Ramsey's book: "Total Money Makeover" & "Financial Peace." Check out the posted link to go see his amazing books--there are even ones for kids to help them learn about finances!!

Again, I told you I am writing this blog as I become a "Domestic Diva."  I hope this encourages you that we all have things we are getting better at.  It just feels like I'm a little behind at times because I never learned all this growing up!  Time to learn it now & teach my future children what I wished I known then & now!  Here's to not letting our offspring follow in our footsteps but helping them be better!  Its hard & a daily decision but it will be heftily rewarded when you see them all grown-up & ready to literally "take on the world."  But I must move back into this past weekend.

I will make an effort to not make excuses & recognize them as such.  If I feel like I can't do it alone, I will ask for help from the hubby--he said that's all I need to do!  I will remember that a little maintenance each day will assure I don't have another Monday Madness to get the house in order!

This weekend was frightfully cold for alot of us.  I made sure to make tea & other hot beverages to keep warm & imagined a toasty fireplace as I sipped it all up.  What did you do to stay warm during this little chill many of us have been experiencing?

Also, post any tips on anything I wrote about in this blog.  Have a great Monday & I hope its free from madness!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Fabulous Fridays!!!

Yes!  Its Friday & we all made it through another week.  Though I am struggling still with my routine after all that relaxing at relatives houses during the holidays!  Plus, the cold, snowy weather puts one in a "snuggle-up-by-the-fire" mood.  I've had my tea and now its time to get on with putting away what needs to be done. 

This is the day I encourage you to think about something fabulous to do on your "day off."  (that's right!  You need one of those or you will burn out!)  Figure out what fun things you want to do!  Maybe you have a hobby to pick up again.  Whether its music or crocheting or even DIY (Do-It-Yourself) Projects or even online gaming or a movie.  Do something for yourself!  Just don't forget to clean up what you take out so you don't add stress or you will have Monday Madness even worse than usual. 

Heck, why not skip the "stay inside" if its not wintery where you are & do something away from home?  Maybe go out to eat (save room for dessert & bring the rest home for leftovers!!)  or bowl or do something silly like mini putt putt golf.  Go with the kids or see if someone will let you and the hubby go out! 

Whatever you do, don't worry about your job!  This is your day to be pampering!  Take extra time for yourself getting ready, take a bath, do your nails--Saturday will be your day tomorrow & you should look & feel your best!

With that said, Saturday is my day off!  So, no blogs until Sunday or Monday--I plan on chilling out & losing track of most of my time! 

Have a fab weekend!!  Domestic Diva~!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Tip-ful Thursdays

We all know tips can be useful, as long as they are frugal & viable.  I would like to give you some tips I've found work on Thursdays so you can benefit from what I've discovered from books, website & my own trusty brain!

First tip:  Organization:  get storage boxes of all sorts.  If you are the DIY (DO-it-yourself) type, make all kinds of custom sizes that fit in closets & shelves perfectly. 

If you are sewing-challenged, go ahead & buy some, but searched around in second-hand stores & discounts stores-like Goodwill, Bog Lots, Tuesday Morning, TJ Max, even try Wal-mart (they've gotten trendier stuff), the Dollar Store or Dollar General!  Better yet, if you can shop for them on e-Bay or  (Warning!!  Online shopping can be addictive & you need good self-control or a fail safe--like your hubby having the password & pick secret questions you don't know the answer to. Trust me on this one!) you can get an even greater bargain, but be sure to check the shipping to make sure they don't get a profit off of that with a dirt low price.  

Whatever you do, just promise me you won't go to pricey home improvement & department stores without price checking or unless there are extraordinary sales.  Remember, its better to pay the same price or a little more for high quality items that will last, but not worth paying full or near-to full price. 

However you acquire your organization boxes, make sure to get sizes that work for you.  Have some fun with color--match them up to each room.  Think while you buy--make a list before if you have to--what will go in this box?  Will everything fit?  Have measurements of the shelves & spaces you will use.  We only want planned extras if you acquire more space or need them for later.  (Like for christmas ornaments you know you are going to buy in the future and you want all the storage containers to match).  Remember to get boxes or bags for putting away seasonal clothes and decor items (like those ornaments!!).

This sounds like a lot of work, but it will help not have the attack of the sweaters & jeans falling down on you.  We took open bookshelves from my dorm room & used them to put the boxes in our new "downsized" home after both our layoffs.  Our closet space was cut in half & this idea worked great & kept us from making our room look junky.

So, if you have anymore questions on this...look at my links section & go to Messies Anonymous.  The website there has gret tips on organization that have helped me immensly! 

Have a great Thursday & for those of you in the way of the rather large snow storm I am also getting: stay safe & warm!!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Wonderfully Funny Wednesdays!

Since its hump day, I thought a funny personal story or anecdote I find will help us all get over Wednesday.  Heck, its winter even, so we need that extra 'oomph' to keep us whistling along towards Friday.

This week I found an excerpt from a high school Home Ec class of the 1950's  thought it was rather amusing just how simple they made homemaking sound!  Now its seen as something that can be done on the side of a full-time job & child-rearing thrown in as a little quip.  Well, we all know it may seem easy, but unless you are a proficient corporate whiz, professional diva wife & super mommy with major help from an expensive daycare, it takes time to become a Domestic Diva such as this story describes (though learning some homemaking tips on top of just cooking in Home Ec 1&2 would've been helpful to me; also leaving off the full-time job helps too):

Home Economics For Women In The 1950's

July 31st 2007 00:40
From a 1950's high school home economics textbook, teaching girls how to prepare for married life.

1950 housewife
1. Have dinner ready: Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal on time.

This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him, and are concerned about his needs. Most men are hungry when they come home and the prospects of a good meal are part of the warm welcome needed.

2. Prepare yourself: Take 15 minutes to rest so you will be refreshed when he arrives. Touch up your make-up, put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh looking.
He has just been with a lot of work- weary people. Be a little gay and a little more interesting. His boring day may need a lift.

3. Clear away the clutter. Make one last trip through the main part of the house just before your husband arrives, gathering up school books, toys, paper, etc. Then run a dust cloth over the tables.
Your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order, and it will give you a lift, too.

4. Prepare the children: Take a few minutes to wash the children's hands and faces if they are small, comb their hair, and if necessary, change their clothes.
They are little treasures and he would like to see them playing the part.

5. Minimize the noise: At the time of his arrival, eliminate all noise of washer, dryer, dishwasher or vacuum. Try to encourage the children to be quiet.
Be happy to see him. Greet him with a warm smile and be glad to see him.

6. Things to avoid: Don't greet him with problems or complaints. Don't complain if he's late for dinner.
Count this as minor compared with what he might have gone through that day.

7. Make him comfortable: Have him lean back in a comfortable chair or suggest he lie down in the bedroom. Have a cool or warm drink ready for him. Arrange his pillow and offer to take off his shoes.
Speak in a low, soft, soothing and pleasant voice. Allow him to relax and unwind.

8. Listen to him: You may have a dozen things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first.

9. Make the evening his: Never complain if he does not take you out to dinner or to other places of entertainment; instead, try to understand his world of strain and pressure, his need to be home and relax.

10. The goal: Try to make your home a place of peace and order where your husband can relax.
While this may be funny to read; I wonder if some of this might need to be taken to heart.  Maybe the idea of how the home feels when you look at it & making sure its appealing to all who enter.  Just don't be so aloof about it or be patronizing....but a good dinner ready to go & a nice-looking home not only is for the husband's benefit, but for yours too....
One final joke before we go on with our day:

The other night I was invited out for a night with "the girls." I told my husband that I would be home by midnight, "I promise!" Well, the hours passed and the margaritas went down way too easy.

Around 3 a.m., a bit loaded, I headed for home. Just as I got in the door, the cuckoo clock in the hall started up and cuckooed 3 times.
Quickly, realizing my husband would probably wake up, I cuckooed another 9 times. I was really proud of myself for coming up with such a quick-witted
solution, in order to escape a possible conflict with him.
(Even when totally smashed...3 cuckoos plus 9 cuckoos totals 12 cuckoos = MIDNIGHT!)

The next morning my husband asked me what time I got in, and I told him "Midnight." He didn't seem pissed off at all. Whew! Got away with that one!
Then he said, "We need a new cuckoo clock." When I asked him why? he said, "Well, last night our clock cuckooed three times, then said, "Oh. ****."
cuckooed 4 more times, cleared it's throat, cuckooed another 3 times, giggled, cuckooed twice more, and then tripped over the coffee table and farted.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Quotable Tuesdays

Today is an easy blog day for will be a simple quote for you to ponder!!!  Especially for us Domestic Primadonnas who keep the light-fires burning at home!!    It's actually a poem from "  Enjoy!

A Woman's Hands
Written by Valerie in Utah   
Thursday, 08 October 2009
A Woman's Hands
A woman has such special hands,
so many things they do.
They feed their tiny children
and they hug their big ones too.

They join together with their loved ones
during family prayer.
They reach and teach so lovingly
to those for whom they care.

They work on crafts, they clean the house
they touch a fevered head.
They fix the meals and pat their husbands
while kind words are said.

A woman has such special hands,
so many things they do.
May this small token of our love,
Help preserve those hands for you.

Monday, January 4, 2010

The Monday Madness--A little fun mixed into the craziness

So, the holidays are over & now we all must quickly return to a normal daily schedule.  I think that will be the hardest part.  I dropped my exercising because I had shopping & food prep to do; a lot of little chores were dropped to fit in time for festivities.  Plus, the necessary down time needed after all that stress.  You see, this was a busy year:  We went to see friends for Thanksgiving, a week later we were in the car headed to FL for a vacation that was desperately needed but very busy with theme parks, then it was a week before we headed off to family for Christmas...aghh!
I think next year we go on a vacay it will be in the early fall or dead of winter to an all-inclusive resort...but I digress.

I think the biggest part of homemaking that can be difficult is the self-motivation that is necessary.  You have no boss that will fire you if you fail at your job--you house will just be a disorderly mess & things will be left undone.   So, I'm about to try a new type of motivation:  making myself do what needs to be done:  telling myself how great I will feel when the house looks great, the clothes are clean & put away & I have made something delicious for dinner.  It all sounds trivial, but when there are so many technological distractions (believe me, I know--I love my computer, movies, online games) that we have to notice when we are going beyond a break to being drawn away from our work.  Even better would be to incorporate entertainment into the work time.

For instance, I always put on a show rerun or a favorite movie while I fold the laundry.  The reason for a favorite show rerun or movie is so that I'm not completely distracted from my tasks--I know where the plot is going & I will not stop to focus on something I don't want to miss.  Another way to add some fun is I put on fun music when I clean the house.  Yes, I'll even admit I dance a bit.  It just adds a little something to the mundane chore.

So here's to  a new 2010 for all of us!  Find some ways to add a little touch of fun to your daily tasks that help you "Whistle while you work!!"  (thanks Snow White for that great tip!!)

Anyone have any other tips on how to keep focused on chores but also have some fun??  Leave a comment!!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

The New Year Beginning

I must confess that I didn't feel quite ready for 2010, but I am glad that it is here.  Some may think I'm somewhat new to blogging, but only here on blogger.  I decided that I wanted to find a good place to write down my thoughts so they coul help others.   I am like many young women my age:  I am befuddled at trying to run a good household & also go after my dreams.  I am trying to find the resolution to the conflict between these two thoughts.  I want to prep & become a great mom but also want to work with my talents. 

I am now in the process of making a decision.  I think I know what to do, but I am working out the intuition & making sure I am doing the right thing.  I thought about how many other women are frightened of being domestic & working out of the home.  I thought!  I could blog about all this & help soothe others fears!  I understand the pressure to be a working woman & know the ridicule of staying here at home!  Let the ridicule keep coming, we are not swayed by it...I know why I decided to do what I did & so do the others I have conversed with on my daily ventures.

Now here comes the hard part--how do I also live my dreams?  And how do I act on my dreams & learn to run an efficient & nice looking home???

Guess that's what this blog is about!  You watching me figure all this out & maybe learn as you go!

The Domestic Diva