Monday, April 30, 2018

Monday,I'm sorry for this mess,but.... Money saving

      Someone gave the mouse a cookie on Saturday.  My list is only half done and I made a bigger mess upstairs instead of helping to get rid of messes.  I swear I worked my rear off so what happened?  Here it is Monday and I have already had two customers here and I have things that need to be done in the next hour and, and, the house.... well....

     Mom had a really difficult weekend.  I think it is mostly due to our insistence that she re look at an assisted living center.  I just don't think she wants to go to one.  I thought it was the money, but now I really think she is just too far down the road and would need a full care center.  We had a lot of tears and several really messy accidents.  She is very weak and I am going to try and go a different route.

     Saturday I started out like gang busters, stripping the beds, cleaning the bedrooms and the fridge and freezers.  I took stock of what meats we had.  We have been living off of left overs from my birthday party over a month ago so the fresh fruits and veggies were really depleted.  We needed to get groceries.  I pulled several things out of the freezer that were getting old ad needed to be used. This is where the mouse came into the kitchen.

     Rhubarb 3 packages needed to be used, along with 3 pie crusts.  I had a bowl of mealy apples that needed to go into a salad or a pie.  I found a container of shredded zucchini that had to be used.  I also pulled out every container of chicken broth and there were at least 5 small containers of homemade stock and chicken meat.  So now the freezers are clean and organized and all of last years garden produce is out.  We have plenty of meat in all varieties and frozen buns and veggies.

    So all the while I was doing this I was also doing laundry which I did get done. As I was cleaning the fridge, I was  thawing broth, chopping celery, carrots and frozen dehydrated onions. I also thawed 2 large awkward bags of dipping chocolate and then refroze them into three smaller square containers, easier to stack and allow us to thaw when needed.  I made a grocery list and put mom down for a nap.  Hub's and I went and did the biggest grocery shop we have done since before Christmas.

     Now we came home to a nice clean fridge to put everything in and I invited mom upstairs to help me cook.  She said she was too weak, but soon came up to join me.  We made a strawberry rhubarb pie, and a dutch apple pie.(Hub's favorite)  We also made two loaves of zucchini bread.  I had mom grind all the nuts and it was hard for her, as her hands are weak and she said her left side felt weak signally another small stroke.  But she rallied on until I had made a batch of homemade noodles for the chicken soup and then I cleaned the very disgusting kitchen all except the floor and the stove top. Which I will do today.  (Hub's did the floor already blessed man)

It was 10:30 when I finished and I was exhausted.

     Sunday we woke to no power and mom too weak to go to church, so I went back to bed for a long snooze. The two younger girls came down at about noon and still no power.  Finally at 20 minutes to one we had power restored and I had not bathed or set my hair.  So hubs zipped off to church and I stayed home with the girls.  Lil sis came over to get mom and we all enjoyed homemade chicken soup and pie.  Then D#2 and I went and walked the bridges, and had a nice long talk.  I sent soup home with D#3 and made D#2 take home many things for her house.  I am trying to down size clutter and she has a huge house.  I never let the kids go home without taking something.

     I did not get the floors vacuumed or anything done in mom's domain or the shop, but I plan on getting those things done in the next couple of days.  My housekeeper will be back next week  bless her.  I hope to get some yard work done this early evening if the weather allows, if not I will clean some more.

Monday's Money Saving Madness

1. cooked at home from scratch using storage.
2. continued to work on bath rug
3. Picked up several free things from Albertsons monopoly game and also won $5.00 
4. Used 1/2 the laundry soap called for on laundry that was not filthy.
5. Hung sheets and heavy articles on clothesline to save on dryer.
6. Cleaned out freezers and fridge and used all older food in things we can eat and enjoy
7. Took stock of food storage and purchased peanut butter on sale.  It was the smallest jars that were cheapest by the ounce. Funny it was the same way with crackers.
8. Stocked up on olives and pickles that we eat and use a lot more of in the summer months (went to an Aldi equivalent)Also found a sink basket for washing veggies there.  Ours had broken and it was 1/3 the price of a normal store.
9. One market had sliced cheese on sale  for .99 cents limit 4.  As hub's was with me we purchased 8 packages.  When I got outside I looked at the receipt and we were over charged, I went back in and was reimbursed $7.03.  It pays to pay attention.
10. Finally went through my purse and gathered all my change for my pig.  It is still starving to death.
11.  Ignored the baskets of 1/2 price merchandise as I needed nothing and 1/2 off was just not enough to tempt me.
12.Was able to alter several prom dresses with beads and scraps in the shop.
13. Found a beautiful piece of wool for $2.99 at a thrift store for a future rug.
14.Hubs asked me for a wax wrap to cover and onion.  Yeah I even have him now using the bowl covers, and wax wraps for things rather than plastic wrap.

I have plenty to do in the shop today and I think I may have to run to Jo Anns.

Tomorrow is a new month with new goals, I wonder what debt  (s) I will conquer next.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Saturday, April 28, 2018

Saturday, It is raining so......

     I woke up after sleeping in some :) to a rainy over cast day.  Drat!  Yesterday was in the 80's and I was able to spend a few hours outside between clients and sewing.  It was so nice and I got so dirty.  You forget how dirty cleaning and planting is.  I was able to clean two large beds in the front yard and lay bark.  I still have two more larger beds to do, but I will have to wait until next week when the weather co operates.

     Our sprinkler system was also turned on yesterday so we can go ahead and plant the garden, but again we will have to wait unless we want to plant in the mud.  The sad thing about this is that even though I am sitting here in my bib overalls all ready to roll in the dirt, I will have to clean house instead.  Not nearly as much fun. In fact blah!

     Hubs and I need to go to Wal-mart and also Albertsons.  We need to do a grocery shop and I want to pick up a few more plants even if we can't plant them.  So if I go shopping I won't have to clean right?  Hmmmm.........

     I will have to make a list or I fear I won't do anything, but pout about the weather.  I am a really good pouter.

Okay things that need to be done:

1. strip beds upstairs
2. put clean linens on beds
3. clean out freezer and fridge upstairs
4. start a huge batch of chicken soup
5. make a grocery list
6. keep laundry going
7. deep clean family room
8. vacuum stairs
10. deep clean mom's room
11. deep clean mom's bath
12. deep clean shop closet (sissie where are you)
13. clean laundry room.
14. deep clean shop (scary)
15. get groceries and things needed from stores.

On you mark get set go!

Have a a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Friday, April 27, 2018

Friday, It is done! I did it!

     The loan is no more.  It is done.  We have had that sucker since the sewer collapse several years ago and we have added to it many times.  We would pay on it faithfully and then add $5000.00 almost every summer.  Finally the payment was up to $350.00 which to me is a car payment.  But we did not have a car to show for it.  The interest was higher also because it was an unsecured signature loan.  But it is done.  Never again.  I know you should never say never, but my kid would have to need a kidney before I did anything this stupid again.

     The nicest thing about getting the small studio loan and this loan paid off is that the payments totaled $500.00 a month and that was so tough in the summer.  This summer with no monies coming in from the studio owner I won't have to struggle.  I will just be able to live normally.  Plus with all the money I have cut back on in the house we will be just fine.

     I finally got the last prom dress done.  I still have one small project and a costume to finish today.  There might be another dress in late this afternoon.   I have to say I am a little burned out sewing right now.  So I am going to hurry and finish what needs to be done in the shop and then get some yard work done.  I also want to really deep clean the house before the weekend is up.  It is such a mess.  I have just been putting things off to stay in the shop and every room needs love.  Sheets need to be changed.  I also want to get my bathrug tub project done and out of the family room. I have several sets of pillowcases that need lace and I just want to clean out the closet in the sewing room and reorganize piles of things.  I am a great stasher of crap.

     Now I need to regroup and see what is next on the pay off financial part of my life.  There are a myriad of smaller bills to tackle, so I will start knocking those out.  As the studio loan at 0% I will pay anything with interest off first and continue to make payments monthly.  My goal is to be debt free except for the house by the New Year.  Let's see what I can do. Right now I am just going to enjoy this moment of payoff.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Thursday, April 26, 2018

Thursday, late post chart #5 complete!

     I completed my 5th saving chart yesterday and started a new one.  This has been such a great tool for me. Money left over from grocery budget, I go to the chart to see what I can cross off.  Birthday check, what can I cross off? Money from sewing or a check in the mail, what can I cross off?  Reimbursement from something?  Money saved from cutting back on something?  It all adds up.  I love this chart because it has small amounts we can all deal with.  It is easy to save $5, or $9.  The largest sum is $60.00.  If the gas budget comes under for the month and there is $46.00 left then I can mark the chart off. 

     I will be going to the bank later today with more money to put on the loan and I just checked the checking account and there is more than enough money left at the end of this month to pay if off.  It is hard for me to believe as I am used to there being no money or to having been overdrawn.  Yet there was money left over before the next check came in.  It is like a miracle to me.  I feel so blessed.  How did this happen?  Paying off debts and not adding any new debts really does work.  As many years as I have been trying to get out, I always gave up or added a new debt right at the point that progress could be made.  Some of  these failures were my fault others were not they were just life. I still feel like I am in a dream world, that this cannot be happening to me.

     I am not done I still have a ways to go, but I am going to get there.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Wednesday, It's going down

     I went to the bank yesterday with the studio check and the loan is now at $664.04.  If I had not cut the debt payoff for the studio in half this would have been done by now.  Even with the cut I am still ahead of schedule.  I am now hoping I can have this paid off before the end of the month. It will depend on how much more money I can pull into the shop.  I do have one more paycheck that is due in any day now, but with the mail I can never trust it. I'm totaling monies in my head as I write.  Maybe?

     After this pay off I have to come up with a completely different plan.  Monies in the summer will be different and you never know what the shop will do.All I know is that I will regroup, look at what is left and come up with a strategy.

     When I took mom yesterday to get her hair done, I actually took a couple of hours to just run some errands and have a little me time.  I know I should have gone home to sew, but I went and had my nails done and filled the gas tank, went to my favorite second hand store and scored a beautiful piece of wool  (over 3 yards) for my upcoming rug project. I ran to Joann's for a zipper and had a diet coke from Mc Donalds.  It was too warm to sit in the car, can you believe that?  It was just two glorious hours of sun shine and doing what I wanted.  I don't get many times like that, so I appreciate them.

     After my dance rehearsal, I came home to a busy shop and I sewed until I started to make mistakes about 10:30.

     The little are here today and I hear a baby crying so I had better go see what he needs.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Tuesday,There is light at the end of the tunnel.

     I have been so very busy with prom dresses and I still see no light at the end of the tunnel. I know with in a week I should slow down and then it will be wedding dresses and such.  I was home from the studio last night about 6:30 and the shop stayed busy until 9 p.m. Out of town people coming and going.  There are still 5 prom dresses in the shop due out for this weekend.  So I will not be sitting around much.  I also have a dance costume that needs to be done by Saturday.  There will be last minute emergencies as there always are so I want to be free for those.  In the mean time all this hard work leads to debt pay off.  When you have to work this hard it is nice to see that it makes a difference.

     I was able to put another chunk on the home loan yesterday.  I was repaid a sum of money by one of my daughters, that I also applied toward the loan.  So now it is down to $1164.08.  Today after I take care of a fitting at 10 a.m. I am going to the bank with another check and the total will go down again.  It is very possible that this bugger is going down soon.  Stay tuned.....

     It is a beautiful sunny day and is supposed to be about 77.  I have turned the heat down in the house and will hopefully be able to turn it off soon.  Our water will be turned back on Friday so we can plant the garden Yippee!

     I am taking mom for a perm today at noon she looks like a troll.  Her hair is out of control, I told her I was going to put a bone in it if she didn't go to the salon.

     Well I am off to get to work, I got a light I am chasing and I think it is at the end of a tunnel.

Have a great and productive day, staying positive while you are in the negative.



Monday, April 23, 2018

Monday, Spring work and Money saving madness

Flower boxes are all planted and ready to grow
     We were finally able to get out in the yard on Saturday.  I went out without guilt even though the shop was full. I was a rather upsetting weekend and I tried hard to just let things slide, but I am still a little rattled and I don't even know why.

      Bro and his family came in Friday afternoon.  I was very busy with brides and prom dresses into the early evening.  But as my Lil sis has to work until 6:00 I offered to barbecue burgers on my back deck.  So I took an hour to run to the store and get things ready.  An hour that I did not have mind you.  I received a call about 4:30 that they were in town but were now vegans. ( Bro is always into something new)  Fine so I ran upstairs and threw together a veggies plate, and an Asian coleslaw.  I felt they could fill up with.  Another hour.  Then I went back to work in the shop.  Mom was getting anxious and then I got a call about 5:30 just bring mom over they were not coming.  The girls were not going to get back in the car.  ( the girls 7 and 4 suffer from a from of autism and are very hard to handle)  So I just wasted 2 hours of my precious time and money I did not want to spend.  Could I bring the dinner over there.  ( it was all laid out on the deck)  No!

My beautiful crab apple over the pond
  I dropped mom off and came home and cried for two hours ate candy and Hub's cleaned up the mess.  Once again I am home for the evening with my family over at my sister's enjoying the pursuits they enjoy and I am left out.  It is okay.

     Saturday hub's and I worked hard in the yard.  Our neighbors came over and got our extra rock so that problem was solved.   I planted all most all of the flower boxes and Hub's tilled the garden. I have about 35 flower boxes down from 70 a few years ago.  I know, I know, I do love flowers.

We bought some garden plants , but need the water turned on to plant the garden. See that beautiful soil all ready for plants.

Lil sis called and asked if we wanted to come over for Bro's eldest daughters birthday.  Well of course so we went over for a while and had dinner.  I brought over the burgers from the night before.   It was nice to see the young ones happy.  Bro was his usual selfish different self.  Hard to talk to or have a conversation as there is too much preconceived anger  issues stewing.  But I made as pleasant as I could.  It is just a difficult situation, and I feel very bad, but will not be drug in and support him in his poor choices.

Sunday morning Hub's and I went for  a hike up to a point in the Hell's canyon park.  It was beautiful and we were home in plenty of time for church.  I made a shrimp salad for dinner and took some to our old Bishop who had just returned from a mission in  in Germany.  It was always his favorite.

Money saving madness April 15th-22 2018

1. cooked all meals from home but one.
2. only went to grocery store one time for what was needed for brothers meal. plenty of leftovers :(
3. continued to work on projects from recycled materials
4.Used my clothesline for heavy drying.
5. Used wax wraps and reusable containers in kitchen.
6. reused old wedding lace to fix bridal dresses passing savings onto customer and charging for my services.
7.Pulled as many meals from my storage and freezers.
8. replanted the geraniums I wintered over in stead of buying all new.

Not much of a saving week as it was all really a blur with so much sewing.  I am very busy today and have a rehearsal at 4 I am not at all excited about.  I will also have to go in tomorrow.  Now I remember why I hated having my afternoons torn up with teaching.  I really love the kids but it stresses my day and puts me on edge all day having the time constraint. I don't know why I feel this way I just do.  I don't like the feeling.  It is s a fast heartbeat, sick to my stomach shaky feeling.

I can do this, I just have to stop and regroup.  This will be over soon.  Just breath and take it one day at a time.

Have a great and productive day, staying positive while you are in the negative.



Friday, April 20, 2018

Friday, Every form of Refuge has a price.

     Yesterday I was tooling along in the shop as I have been all week and I had planned on getting a few more dresses out.  Hubs and I made a plan to  have him till the garden and he was complaining about not having a fresh stock of clean underwear.  How long has Sis been gone?  Yes I am way behind on laundry and again on ironing.  Mom's bed ruffle needs to be ironed and put back on her bed.

     Hub's wanted to clean the chicken coop first as he will till the manure into the garden.  This is no easy job.  I had also spoken to him about having rock delivered.  He said it was okay.  Little did I now that it would be delivered while he was in the middle of cleaning the coop.  They also delivered way too much. A good portion was delivered into the street which meant I had to leave my sewing and him the coop.  We worked like dogs for three hours to get the pile 18 inches from the curb.  That is the legal limit it could stick out over night.  Then we lit the pile with outdoor lights.  I could do nothing by 6 last night but lay in a chair and groan.

     I actually ordered a very bad pizza, salad, chicken combo.  Expensive and awful.  We ate it but it was gross.  I could not cook. I could not get upstairs to reheat.  I could not. Now I have to stay in the shop today as I have clients until past 6 p.m. and at least 3 brides. The shop is a wreck and the house needs love.  My laundry is beyond, beyond. I have not taken down the Easter things.  It is only 11:00 in the morning and I am already a sweaty mess.

     Why, why do I let things get like this?  Why can't I be more organized?

     Oh and my baby brother is due in today with his wife and kids.  He will stay at my sisters.  I really do not need to worry about the house as he is not what I would call the best housekeeper, but I would like to at least have a meal for him. 

     I don't think we will be tilling the garden this weekend.  I have to sew, move rock, laundry, move rock, clean, move rock, plant the flowers I bought, move rock, put away Easter, move rock.

     I have been so good at debt payoff, I thought I was invincible. I am not.

     In my favor, I have gotten dressed and fixed my hair and put on lipstick which looks so nice with my bib overalls.  I have cleaned both bathrooms upstairs, and swept my shop.  I have started the laundry and have clean laundry piling the bed in the master bedroom. I took all the wintered over geraniums out of the back hall and have them sunning on the deck.

     I will hit my machines in a few minutes and try to bust out these now 6 prom dresses soon to be more.  I think hamburgers on the back deck for dinner.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Thursday, April 19, 2018

Thursday, Progress!

     Here it is chart #4 completed, since the first of the year. and I am onto another one.  As it is only the 19th and I have 10 more days in April I might just get another one.  Wouldn't it be grand if I could knock out the $1800.00 balance to that loan before the end of the month?  If all goes as planned I may be able to.  But I don't want to count my chickens before they hatch.

     Look at that side bar  under $2000.00.  I am ahead of schedule.  It will be so nice not to have that loan hanging over my head this summer.

     When I woke this morning the sun was actually shining.  Something I haven't seen in a long time. I bought some flowers last night for my boxes out back and I am going to plant them this weekend.  I am also going to work on the front flower beds and put out new bark.

    Hubs asked me to order rock to complete the front of the house which has been a mess for two summers now. I think Hub's may till the garden this afternoon and we are having the rock delivered asap.  So I will have plenty to do outside.  I don't even care about the work, just to be able to be out in the sunshine will be the best gift I can give myself.

     Now I have  to get my butt into the shop and get more dresses out.  I was only able to get 3 out yesterday as I was so busy with the littles. I want to get 5-7 out today if possible.  I have a major dance costume to construct and more dresses coming in.  But you all know I way over plan what I can get done.

     I think I am more excited about yard work and sunshine right now then I am about my debt pay off.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.



Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Wednesday,A sense of humor goes a long way.

     All day yesterday whenever I did something for mom, like got her lunch, or a soda, or fixed her TV, I would give her a charge.  I would add $39.00 or 41.00 to her account.  That is what they would do in the care center she looked at.  It was $42.00 for a shower.  We had a good laugh dickering over the prices of things.  If she asked for some Ice water, I would say $15.00 and she would say $12.00.  I said sold.  So she started really lowering her prices.  By the end of the day I could buy a new car.  One thing taking her to care centers really opened her eyes to the amount of money it costs to be cared for. Maybe she will be nicer.  One can only dream.

     I was able to put out five dresses yesterday and teach for two hours.  I also have two more ready to hit the machine and more are coming in this evening.  I can't say this enough, I am blessed with work.

     We have the two littles with us today.  So I don't think I will get into the shop until they both go down for a nap, this afternoon.  I slept terrible last night and could also use a nap but that is out of the question.

     I should have more good news tomorrow if I can get another couple of people to pick up.  So stay tuned!

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.



Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Tuesday, a day late but not a dollar short

     Yesterday we went to look at assisted living centers for mom.  One was just beautiful, but expensive.  She refuses to spend the money.  She is fussing about the drug addict brother today who just happens to be back in Missoula, so too close for comfort.  We won't let her talk to him and there is a restraining order on him and we are adding our names to it at this time.  So mom is all worried and upset, that he is threatening everyone.  She is just sure if she talks to him she can help him.  She cannot.  So I have to deal with her bad mood and crying fits and worry.  Lucky me.

     I had a wedding dress that I had to get out yesterday and I think there are over 20 dresses in the shop right now.  I am very swamped.  That is a good thing as I can see a debt payoff soon.  Just dealing with mom is so hard right now.  She works herself into fits of hysteria. I am about at the end of my rope.  It was a short rope.

     But all I can do is all I can do. I am trying to do it cheerfully.  It is supposed to be warm this weekend and I am living for that.  I am going to go outside and clean the beds lay bark and plant flowers.  Just thinking of this is keeping me going right now.

Here is Monday's Money Saving Madness a day late. April 8th-15th 2018

1. Ate all meals at home except for Anniversary dinner
2. Used clothesline to dry heavy items.
3. Made a batch of Swedish meat balls with close out burger and pork sausage. Froze
4.  Made two meatloaves with close out burger. Froze
5. Pulled 20 yards of beautiful lace off an old petticoat that was rotting.  This will be enough to trim 10 sets of pillow cases.
6. Used lace from good will dresses  purchased for $1.00 to remake two wedding dresses.
7. Continued to work on thrifty projects when I could spare a few minutes.
8. Replanted seedlings that I had drowned for the garden.
9. Picked up 15 seed geraniums for $1.00 each with the geraniums I wintered over this is all I will need to put in boxes.
10.  Toured garden centers to price list the cheapest bedding plants
11. Home depot had bark 5 bags for 10.00 as there is a glut on the market right now.  So stocked up with 15 bags.  This is the least expensive I have seen bark in over 35 years.
12. Fed all food scraps to the chickens.
13. Continued using  food covers and wax wraps to save on the use of plastic.
14. Sent navy bean soup home with a client in a cottage cheese container.  Love those as I don't have to worry about getting them back.
15. Saved cut off jeans for a quilt I am working on.
16. Picked up meat in the closeout bin for broccoli beef. 50% off.

  I am very weary right now with life.  Just really tired and a little blue.  I need to pep myself up.

What did you do this week to save money?

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Friday, April 13, 2018

Friday, old pictures and Wedding dresses

 I found this picture when I was cleaning files.  I have to laugh as the smile I have here is a fake.  In the spring of this particular year I had gotten sick with a bad infection and was off my meds for about 4 months leading to steroid use.  Finally I was cleared for a low dose chemo drip and I was so happy to get off steroids.  Well the day after my 4 hour treatment we decided to ride the Hiawatha trail.  I felt great and I was so up to know I could get off steroids.  We completed the trail, but I did not realize how weak and sick I was from the treatment.  By the end of the ride I was throwing up and we took a shuttle back to the top of the trail.  Ah good times.
 Here are the three girls.  I don't know how long ago this was taken. Can you believe they all have different colored hair?  How did that happen?
 Yesterday was wedding dress redo's.  Here is a 1950, sleeves removes and bead mock up pinned on.  I will try it on bride and cut away at shoulders.  I will also have to alter and add cut away lace at arms.

There is a 1970's dress behind that I am working on.  Both of these dresses were soaked in a biz solution for three days to whiten and remove stains.

Here is the dress back.  I will cut away the key hole down to the waist. This dress will be tea length and be worn to a Western Wedding, with cowboy boots.
 I am taking the lace motifs off an old wedding dress that was badly stained. I found this for $1.00 at goodwill.  These motifs will be hand stitched to the above dress and pearls re added where needed. dress.

I save everything from my wedding alterations.  Then I pull lace scraps from bags.  Pearls and sequins and rhinestones are also saved for redo's.

This allows me to keep my prices down so I can charge a lot for my labor.

Both of these dresses are due out next week along with several prom dresses.  I guess I had better get to work.

Mom was sick yesterday.  She made a big mess of her bed and the bed ruffle and the carpet.  So I also have all that laundry to finish.  I hope she feels better today.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Thursday, April 12, 2018

Thursday, Yesterday was a whirlwind

      It was a very busy Wednesday at our house. It was Hub's and my 39 th anniversary.  We had the two babies from across the street all day and the shop was super busy.  Hubs insisted on going out to Chinese last night and I was too tired to argue.  He also brought me a large diet coke from McD's about noon.  The best gift ever!

     Hub's also replaced the last three doors in this long hallway. All have handicap handles.  We will have painting done later.  It looks so nice.

     That is dinner out twice in the last two weeks.  I might be slipping. I took mom out to get a few groceries after we had dinner. From the time the kids were picked up until late in the evening I sewed.

     The shop is so full you can hardly walk in there.  My goal today is to get it some what organized.  I so wish Sis were here as she would have me cleaned up in no time.  But it is up to little old me.  Organization not my strong suit. Paying off debt is my strong suit.  Look, look another $1,000 sheet filled out.  This is the 4th one and the 4th month so I am right on track.  Who thinks I can do another before the end of the month?

     Today I really have to sew hard and pay attention to what needs to be done.  There is a prom for the next 4 weekends and then we have to go to Hub's mom and dad's 70th wedding anniversary and their 90th birthday party, then the Spring recital.  So as you can see, my life will not slow down for the next 6 weeks.

 Should I take down the birthday and Easter decos?  All I know is that the old brass candlesticks are going by by.  The painful decisions of life.  "Sniff".

Well I am off to dry my witch hair and clean up so I can burrow into the shop and see what havoc I can get about.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Tuesday, stop whining and start winning

     Okay this might not really deserve a drum roll but I just needed one today.  It is a dreary rainy, cold, nasty day AGAIN.  I have a boat load of sewing to do and mom is groaning and moaning in the next room.  Hub's will want dinner later this afternoon, I am lost as to what to cook even though there is plenty to cook and I just want to whine.

     Well not really because!  I am below $3000.00 on the home loan and it is only April 10th. Which means if all goes well I will be able to do even better with my April goals.

     I am weary and I am rockin.  I can be both.  I said I could. I am the boss of me.

     Lil sis made two appointments at care centers next week for mom.  We have made no decisions yet, we are just looking into things.  Mom was great yesterday, don't know what today will bring.  I have to teach tonight and I will take her with so she will enjoy that.  Tomorrow the littles will be here and will slow down my sewing so I have to get much done today. 

     Hub's is busy transposing music upstairs as it is too nasty outside.  He did manage to get the yard mowed yesterday but was not able to till the garden and I have corn starts that need to go into the garden.  I don't know when we will get a break in this really awesome weather we are having.  Okay, okay I know it is not snow like many of you.

     Sis went home yesterday and that makes me sad.  I so miss her.  But she also has a company to run and they are going into their busy season.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.



Monday, April 9, 2018

Monday, Money saving madness

It was a very hard week end with mom.  We were at the hospital on Saturday afternoon and really nothing was wrong.  She was working herself into a fit.  I keep asking myself what happened to my mother.  I just could not believe her behavior.  She was bound and determined  to ruin our last weekend together.  Just mean and nasty.  My sisters have given up trying to deal with her.  The attending doctor suggested taking her off all meds and perhaps seeking hospice.  So that is something I will work on with her doctor.  I just don't think she is ready for that. This is just so hard. I keep saying that like it is going to help.  Today she seems to be very happy.  She is showered dressed has eaten and is ow watching the Mid wife.  Don't know how long this mood is going to last.  I have appointments all day into the evening so I can't take her anywhere and I hope she does not act up.

     I made a big pot of bean soup on Saturday.  Hub's asked me to come up and do something with it.  Does that mean he won't eat it for dinner?   Good to know as I have a he!! of a day ahead of me.

    We took the final three hall doors down on Saturday to have them replaced.  The upstairs hall will be done and ready to repaint.  I just am going to love the way it will look. Twenty years of those awful doors was long enough.

     Friday afternoon and part of Saturday before mom started to act up Sis and I cut out and sewed two denim skirt duplicates.  At our twenty year class reunion she bought us matching denim skirts from Talbots.  I wore mine to shreds and she has wanted to duplicate this skirt for years.  We were finally able to do it.  I had to fire her several times.  But they are done and they are beautiful.  I have the old cut up skirt to make myself one.  I also made her a double gardening apron out of some old curtains.  I am also going to make my Lil sis new pillow covers out of the rest of this material.  I should have taken pictures, but Saturday was so chaotic.

     All I can do is keep going.  Say a prayer and keep going.  Swear a little and keep going.  Cry a little and ......

     Monday, money saving madness April 1st-7th 2018

1. All meals home cooked except one.  Hubs and I went Effie's for a $20.00 date long over due.
2. Used up the Easter ham and bone, will freeze what is left of soup.
3. Took all of my free coupon items to Albertsons and cashed them in for $29.16 worth of freebies. Cheese, tomato sauce, corn, ibuprofen, donuts, bread, cupcake wrappers.  Nothing too extravagant but free is free.
4. Continued to work on my second bath rug.
5.  Went to second hand store with Hubs and found two really nice gifts.
6.  Bought 8 pairs of wool pants on dollar day at a thrift store for a wool rug I am going to start work on.
7. Received a bag full of bread bags for another project.
8. Sewed two very nice skirts for Sis.  These would have been over $100.00 each at Talbots.
9. Reused a set of curtains for aprons.
10. Stayed home a couple of days and spent no money.
11.  Sis bought me a new gardening basket for weeding that I am going to love.
12.  Fixed many items in the shop with product on hand saving me money

I just pray all will go well today with mom.  Her church group is coming to get her for book club.  I hope she behaves.

Look at those side totals.  I will brag tomorrow.:)

Have a great and productive day staying positive while your are in the negative.


Friday, April 6, 2018

Friday, Set backs, Attitude is everything

     In this long and crazy adventure of becoming debt free, we have had many set backs.  There have been true expensive emergencies.  There have been expensive aggravations.  There have been children.  There have been stupid mistakes. There have been down turns because I just got tired and lazy, and went on a bender.

Some of you might remember the Sewer Collapse, which we are still paying for.  It was one expensive mess.  I had a total melt down.

Eye surgeries really stopped me.

Constant infections  have slowed me down

We have had car repairs

Flooding in the basement

Unemployed children

A business that was taking too much out of me with no real financial return.

Just outside forces that worked against my plan and could  and did derail me.

I would cry and whine and curse my life.  But no one came to rescue me and I just had to pick myself up and move on.

I should not have let mom start remodeling the kitchen, but I did and incurred more debt

I love to shop and have often bought things I did not need.

The funny thing now is that I realize what a learning process this is.  I wanted instant gratification.  I am blue about my debt so I go shopping to make myself feel better and the trinket does until I realize I am more in debt.

Now I don't even want the trinket, in fact I am purging many of those things from my life.  When I don't shop and buy nonsense I can pay off bills and see progress  and that feeling of progress is lasting. It is empowering.

SO if you are on the same trail I am on , what set backs have you had and how do you re-motivate yourself to go on?

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Thursday, April 5, 2018

Thursday,Staying motivated

     How do you stay motivated?  What motivates you?  In this long, long race to pay off debt, I have been trying to stay motivated.  It is hard. There are several things that can motivate me.  So I was trying to list them in my mind.  What motivates me?  Now these can be small simple things or large pay offs.  What one must remember is that many small things can lead to a great reward.  Many small seemingly insignificant changes will add up to an eventual big change.  But it is motivation that keeps us going with the small changes that we cannot see.  Here are 25 things that motivate me.

1.  A sunny day motivates me. Actually the Sun in general.
2. Getting a good nights sleep  ( this can be rare at times)
3. Having a relatively pain free day
4.  Getting a good call from one of my daughters.
5. Seeing progress in my shop.  Even a small job like a pair of pants hemmed puts me that much closer to my goal.
6. Resisting the urge to spend money and realizing that I spent no money at all for a day is a step forward.
7. Blogging and reading blogs motivates me to do better.  It is daily accountability and daily response that spurs me to keep going.
8. Counting your blessings can motivate you.
9. Exercising or moving can motivate you. This works for me.
10.  Having a clean house motivates me.
11. Cleaning out a drawer of cupboard can motivate me.
12. Getting rid of clutter can motivate me.  Grab a bag run through the house and find 10 things to donate or get rid of.
13. Working on a project is a great motivator.  You can see progress.
14. Cooking a good meal from scratch is a great motivator.
15. Just fixing my ever curly frizzy hair and putting on make up is a motivator.
16. Gardening and working in the dirt motivates me.
17.  Cleaning and detailing the car is a great motivator.
18.  Cleaning in general, just something, some small place that you can look at to say isn't that nice?
19.Good news can motivate me.
20. Saving money on something I NEED can motivate me.
21.  But the greatest motivator is SERVICE.  Do something no matter how small to lighten someones  load.  It is in blessing that we are blessed.  I am a firm believer in this.
22.  A good laugh can motivate me.  Laugh often and much.  Find humor in things that  bother you.
23.  Smile it is contagious  ( I know pretty Sally Happy pants but this does work)
24.  Asking for help can motivate me.
25. The color green can motivate me.

What motivates you?

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.


Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Wednesday, Day care and my cares

     We have the two little ones today.  It is hard to get anything done.  I never had two at a time.  When one went to school I had another.  My little ones grew up in my shop making wrecks of my sewing supplies.  Or they were on my back while I was teaching.  Or running the gym or theater.  They just went with me.  Now with two under two it is constant.

     We were able to determine that mom had a stroke.  It was very scary for me.  When I realized what was happening I called 911 and then went and got 2 baby aspirin.  I ground those to a powder and forced them into her mouth.  She could or was not responding.  When she did try to talk it was very hard to understand.  She could not use her arms and both eyes were wide open and unable to close them.  Her one leg was very weak yesterday.  She was also turning very blue.  I swear her hands her as blue as denim, and her feet and her nose were blue. She was breathing and I could do nothing until the Emt's arrived.  She was starting to pink up a little and as they ran her tests all were within normal range.  As she has a DNR on record and she was recovering the decision was made to keep her at home.

     Mom however is telling my sister's I made this up and no one came.  When we ask about her leg she says she doesn't know and it is nothing.  Lil sis called the ambulance service for a report to be faxed, but still she does not believe it.  She has also developed a very bad cold. I called a doctor and described her symptoms and he said it was a stroke.  She refuses to take blood thinners.  This is just a new part of my life.  My father had a stroke  and recovered only to drown 2 months later.  There was very little water in his lungs indicating that he had another major stroke.   Not a very good future for me if both biologics die from strokes.

    I went to the studio last night for 2.5 hours to help choreograph a Pirate scene.  It was fun and the kids love the number.  Several times I had to remind them that this was hard work and to quit having so much fun.  NO FUN , knock it off!  I yelled constantly but it did no good they just kept having fun the little buggers. The scene is really comical  with a mix of Broadway and Irish dance.

    Mom is finally up and she is upstairs with Sis.  She seems to be happier and moving  better today.

If you look at the side bar you will notice that my Home/sewer loan total went down by $1000.00.  I do believe I may more than make my goals this month.  I feel so blessed.  It is only the 4th and I have almost the whole month to keep working on this balance.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Tuesday April Goals!

     I thought March was good month of progress although it was very busy with the birthday party and ending with Easter,or you can April began with Easter.  I can't think of anyway to begin a month better than Easter.

     Sis will be here for 5 more days and I will really miss her when she goes.  She has spent a lot of time at Lil sis's working on helping Lil sis down size many things that she brought with her from St. Louis.  Sis is a great organizer.

Mom had a weird, bad spell last night.  911 was called and it was a tense scary time. But all seems to be well physically.  Mom just is a very spoiled person and has her hissy fits. When she is called on her behavior by Lil sis or Sis or myself she goes into pout mode and causes her own problems.  I am quit upset with her as I think she took too many sleep meds.  (these are now hidden by me) I really don't know what to think or what to say.  I am upset that she is so selfish and inconsiderate.  There is no appreciation for anything we do and it gets really hard to live with someone who is constantly unhappy and ungrateful.  I feel like I am tap dancing as fast as I can. I am at a loss as to what I can do. I will just have to take this one day at a time.  If she chooses to be miserable I will just have to deal.  I am not a good dealer.....

     I was very busy yesterday with a wedding dress and  prom dresses.  I will continue to work on wedding dresses today and I also have to go to the studio at 4.

     Hub's took the left over cake and a large plate of cookies to his old office.  They were very grateful as tree planting had started and all were at the office at 4 in the morning to unload the coolers and start planting (which is back breaking work).  So coming back to the office for yummy treats and hot coffee was much appreciated.  Hub's enjoyed himself.

Aprils goals:

Restart seedlings that I lost
Lose 10 lbs
get the home loan under $3000.00
clean all flower beds
plant garden if possible (it snowed in the last 24 hours)
Continue to work and complete bath rugs
Finish another 1000 savings chart
Spend as little on groceries as possible
Purchase nothing that is not necessary

     So those are some great goals and the hardest one will be losing weight as I loves me a sweet roll.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.



Monday, April 2, 2018

Monday, Easter weekend happenings and money saving madness

 Happy belated Easter everyone!  He is Risen!  I love Easter, new life, new goals, forgiveness, Atonement.  We have so much to be grateful for and we always forget how really blessed we are.  Easter helps us remember these things.

     Here is a picture of the wonderful Birthday cake D#2 made me.  It was chocolate with a raspberry filling and butter cream icing.  So good.  It was our desert for our Easter dinner.  The rest will goes to Hub's old office.  We had of course way too much food.

Here are the cookies that mom and I made and frosted Friday night.  We got home late and did not start the cookies until 9:30.  Mom went down at midnight and I stayed up and frosted and decorated until 2a.m.  I left the kitchen a terrible mess and my Sissie is still mad at me.:)
 Sis and I worked cleaning up the garden for Hub's to till.  I even trimmed the ivy.  We cannot plant yet as the water is not on and I have to replant many of my seedlings as I drowned them leaving them outside in a rain storm.  I am a bad seedling mother.

 Hubs really cut back the Wisteria this year but I am not worried as this things grows so fast.  It cannot be killed.

 I cleaned up to this point in the pond area and I still have to clean the pond and cut back all the bamboo.  Bamboo also takes over.  It must have taken a page out of the Wisteria's book. Because the pond is a natural environment eco system all the plantings around it were purchased to shade the area.  The Stag Horn Sumac grows at an odd angle and has been force pruned by me to add color and shade.  The same with the weeping pine over the skimmer.  I also have a weeping sterile crab apple with a really bent stem that leans over to shade the other side.  I bought it purposely from a nursery for very little because of the bent stem, but it is perfect for my purposes.  I will take a picture of it when it blooms.
It is so pretty.

 See the cat drinking out of the bird bath?  Such a smart cat.  The area looks so bare and clean. We still have the pond to clean and that area around it to clean.  I also have to trim all the ivy along the rock wall and clean out one more bed.  Then it is just plant the garden and all the boxes.  Now onto the front yard!

     Money saving madness March 24-31st 2018

1. ate all but one meal at home using pantry and freezer
2.  made cookies for churches for Easter rather than buying.
3. Used my clothes line for heavy items
4. Bought steaks for Easter dinner with a 50% off coupon.
5. Used a ham bought 6 weeks ago for .79 a lb for Easter weekend and have plenty left over for soup and sandwiches.
6. ordered two gifts on Amazon and then added a new pair of overalls for me and took them back off.  I have the material and a pattern so I will make some.
7. finished my new bath rug and continue to work on one for in front of toilet.
8. started a new crocheting project with disposable bread bags.  I need to collect more. Does anyone want to save and mail me there bread bags?  I will gladly reimburse you postage or mail you a cute gifty.
9.Stocked up on soda as it was $2.00 a twelve pack.
10.  Really cut back on Easter baskets made.  Only did them for nephews( even cut back there on candy) Also one for B and her significant other.
11.  Made a large order of sewing supplies from U-line saving me hundreds of dollars on trips to Joanns plus 1/4 the prices.
12. paid several bills on line saving postage.
13. stayed home much of the week to save gas.
14. Panted all my birthday flowers that could be planted to add color and new growth next year.
15. Used coupons at Joanns, for things needed.

Well I have so much to do in the shop I had better get busy.

Have a great and productive day staying positive while you are in the negative.