Monday, June 29, 2009

Why buy expensive toys?

Anyone who has EVER met Nicolas has noticed that he bounces all the time. Ever since he was 9 months old in his bounce seat, that has been his way of getting out his energy. Now, he just bounces on the tips of his toes anywhere and everywhere. Of course we've battled with him jumping on the beds, couches, and other furniture. A while ago David and I started searching for a trampoline or something that he could jump on. A month ago I found the perfect toy! We call it his "jump toy". It is safe, easy to move, and just what he needed. This toy has remedied any problems we had with him jumping on the furniture and it also helps him get out his energy before he goes to bed. Here's a picture of him on the toy after a bath.

Well, yesterday, I walk into the living room to find that Nico has picked up one of David's screw drivers that he had just taken out and poked it right through the jump toy. Yes...that's right....a hole...right through the only half-way decent toy that I've spent any kind of money on in the past year! The beloved jump toy slowly, but surely began to deflate. By the time that we let Nico out of time out, the outer ring was completely deflated. So...tell me....why spend money on toys again?

Why Coupon Shop?

Now, just as I never thought I would be a "blogger", I also never thought I would be a "couponer". It's amazing what life and the economy can change about our lives. So....a few months ago, I started to pick my friend's brain about couponing b/c I desperately needed to save money. Things were really tight and I had little to no money for groceries, so I had to do what I could. After working on it for a few months, I'm down to a couple of hours a week and I've been able to reduce my grocery budget to 1/3 of what it used to be.

Today I spent $31 and saved $76!!!

For those of you that have heard of people being crazy coupon freaks, no worries, I'm not one of those (yet). I don't go dumpster diving for newspapers to get coupons that people have thrown away, but I have hit up my parents and my grandparents for their coupons. They both get the Sunday paper and don't use their coupons. This is another money-saving method b/c I'm not paying any money for the paper (or coupons) to start with.

For any of you who don't have a clue about couponing, here's the 1-2-3 of saving money at the grocery store:
1) clip all coupons that come in coupon booklets in the Sunday paper
2) check out what all of the Buy One Get One Free deals are at your grocery store of choice
3) Use coupons that match up with those items (sometimes only buy 1 item instead of 2 b/c it's 1/2 price with the deal)

I wish that it really was just a 3-step process, but there's is definitely more to it. For example, you need to organize the coupons if you're going to do this more than once. It takes a few weeks of doing it to build up your coupon selection and to come across the deals that you want. You need to be prepared to stock up a little...when you can get something really cheep, buy a few of them and then you won't have to buy it for a while. And lastly, be willing to try new things. I have become a better cook since I started couponing b/c I've bought things that before I would have never thought to buy.

Is it worth it? That's your call. It is for me.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Why Blog?

Well, I never considered myself to be a blogger, but I have also never been a scrapbooker, album creator, or one to do anything creative with any of the cool things that have happened in our life. For all of you really creative people out there, you will cringe when I admit that my way of keeping up with my son's baby memories consist of a file folder in a file cabinet, right beside the "important receipts" folder.....and that's if I'm lucky enough to put the "treasured item" in there. Seriously....I have a lock of my baby's hair in a file folder!!! Hey...the way I look at least I have the lock of hair! (although it is still in a business envelope, completely unlabeled). For all of this time I have basically just accepted this about myself and only occasionally felt a little guilty for not keeping up with any memories for my family, friends, or son to look back on in the future. Although I don't start this blog out of guilt, I do start it with a glimmer of hope. My hope is that blogging will help me balance my lack of creativity and my plethora of interesting experiences, to create some sort of archive that otherwise would not exist. Follow along if you'd like.