Thursday, October 29, 2009

Bargains, Bargains!

Here are some pretty good deals I found online:

Payless Coupon: Get 50% off everything. It's only good through tomorrow! Click here to print your coupon or get a text coupon, if you're snazzy like that. :)

Old Navy: Get 15% off your purchase from Old Navy. This coupon is good through the 31st. Click here and scroll down.

Bath and Body Works: Get a FREE Anti-Bacterial Pocketback Hand Gel with ANY purchase. This coupon is valid through Nov 1st. I don't buy Bath and Body normally because I'm just fine with my Suave. :) BUT since this does say "Free with ANY purchase", you could go in and purchase a $1 or $2 item from clearance or something else that is small and get this free! Click Here.

JC Penney: Now this one can get a little complicated. You can get a 10$ off coupon to use in store (printable) or online (by using promo code and serial number off coupon) by signing up for JC Penney rewards and by saving a credit card on file with them (I used my debit card). This reward is only available for new rewards customers. If you're not a rewards member (I wasn't). You can go here to sign up to be a rewards member. After you save your credit card info you will be directed to a page that should show you in the right corner your 10$ coupon. This coupon is valid through Nov 17th. There is also a promotional code only for online orders. It is $10 off a purchase of $10 or more. The code is SWEETS4U. So, here is what I did... I signed up to be a rewards member, I clicked on my coupon and wrote down the code and serial number.. I didn't print it off because I knew I'd be shopping online. Then I went shopping. I knew that if everything worked out I'd have $20 off my order. Luke is in need of a winter jacket. So, I looked and found that their toddler jackets are on sale for $29.99 (reg $49.99). When I got to check out I entered the promotional code SWEETS4U and then entered my rewards code/serial number. I filled out my shipping address and billing info, it gave me my total. Everything worked out perfectly. I got the jacket for $9.99 plus shipping which totaled to be $16.58. Pretty good!

I did look at other sales and clearance. There are some kids shoes on sale for $10.99 and up so that would make a great deal, even if you only use the SWEETS4U code. You can certainly just do the rewards deal and print off your coupon, if you don't want to shop online or if you're heading to JC Penney soon. There are a few restrictions that are listed on the coupon. I don't know exactly what they are but they are probably similar to all JC Penney restrictions (not valid on Levi's, ect). Think about Christmas gifts. Right now, online they have two ties on clearance for $14.99 each. If you go to the women section and click on Fashion Jewelry you can find some great deals too! (If you click on regular jewelry, you'll get the high priced, real stuff!)

Anyway, just wanted to pass on some good deals! If you take advantage of any of them let me know! I love hearing about good deals! :)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

MPM 10/19

White Bean and Ham Soup, Onion Biscuits

Roast with Potatoes and Carrots, Onion Biscuits

Brunswick Stew (the link to the recipe I use is on my previous MPM)

Mexican Tortilla Pie, Rice, Salad

So, since I was sick the end of this week the brunswick stew didn't get made.. and I still have the roast in the freezer! Things were easy this week. It was so nice to just have to thaw out vegetable soup! Then Friday night for our romantic anniversary dinner we had Papa John's. :) We spent the evening catching up on Thurs nights Office, coughing and eating pizza! The Hubs and I both decided to head to the Dr yesterday. Yay, antibiotics! I'm so thankful for the help we had with the kids! And then my mom brought over stuff to make chili! It was nice to not have to think about supper! (BTW, Roll Tide!) Today I am so achy from coughing so much. I'm actually about to see if Eli will take an early nap since he was up for 2 hours straight last night from 11:30pm to 1:30am! What is up with that? Sigh, that is another post.. We have a birthday party for the Hub's grandmother this afternoon, right at Eli's nap time. Hopefully an early nap will help to avoid any crazy, one-year-old action. At least for the party.. probably not for tonight!

What is on your menu? I am in need of something yummy and new. I feel stuck in a rut! I've got chicken in the freezer for next week.. any ideas??

Check out for more menu and recipe ideas!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Happy Five Years!

Today is Robby and my five year anniversary!

Can I just reminisce a little bit about that day? This could get long. Humor me. :)

It was a beautiful day! I picked October because I love it so much. I love pumpkins and fall leaves. I love the smell of cinnamon and the cooler weather. Fall is just my favorite season for so many reasons. My birthday happens to be in October as well, so all the more better! When we were deciding on a day, I knew I wanted it to be an even number. I just like them. So it was between the 2nd and the 16th. The 16th won out because I liked it more, I guess? We were engaged a year and 4 months. We got engaged on May 24th, 2003. I just knew that I couldn't plan a wedding in 4 months so we decided to wait until Oct. 2004. It was long... longer than I would have liked but we did it.

So, here it was, October 16, 2004 at 5pm. Our wedding day! Like I said, it was a beautiful day. The weather was a perfect 72 degrees out. It was sunny with a gentle breeze. The perfect fall day.

My dress was candlelight.. strapless.. beaded on the top.. and pouffe. I wanted a princess wedding dress and that's what I got! However I did not wear glass slippers! I wore flip flops down the isle! I never really intended to do this. My mom had bought me these super cute off white, beaded flip flops to wear at the reception. Well, when my dress came in and I went to try it on with my shoes that had about a 2 inch heel, the dress was too short! I had been told that the dress was made for girls 5'7. Wrong! I am not 5'7! I looked and looked for cute flat shoes and didn't have any luck. So, I just decided to wear my flip flops. No one ever knew and my feet were comfy the entire time! My bridesmaids wore crimson-ey red dresses. (they also had cute red flip flops that I 'decorated' to wear for the reception!) They carried beautiful bouquets of red, orange and yellow flowers. My bouquet consisted of mainly tiger lilies and red roses with a few smaller yellow, red and orange flowers.

On to the ceremony.. The first thing, of course, was the parents and grandparents coming in. I chose "How Beautiful" to be played on the flute! It was so pretty! I couldn't find a good instrumental version of this song but here is Twila Paris' singing it. It really is a great, timeless song about the beauty of Christ and the love He has for His bride.

The next to come in was the bridesmaids. The song the Hubs and I choose for this is one the Hubs had played for me while we were engaged. It's called "Miracles" by Everman, which was a Christian band that, I think, only made one album. Oh my, it's a beautiful song. A friend of ours played & sang it on acoustic guitar and it was just perfect. Exactly what I wanted. And guess what?? I found someone singing it at a wedding online!! I think I just might cry!

Next my sweet hubby-to-be rolled out the white aisle runner for me to walk down. Then I had another song sang. Just by itself, right before I walked down the isle. It's "I Am" by Nichole Nordeman. As I picked out songs for the wedding, I really wanted God to be glorified through the entire service. This song is a great reminder that God is our constant. He is there, always. The Bible tells us that He will never leave or forsake His children.

Here comes the bride! I came into the traditional wedding march, because I'm traditional like that. My high school youth pastor flew up from Tampa, FL to marry the Hubs and I. What a blessing that was! Another dream come true. He did a wonderful job! We said our vows, which were traditional, but very short. ;) I knew that I would be super nervous so I chose the vows with the least amount of words! Haha! After we said our vows we had the Lord's supper and lit the trinity candle.

After we lit the trinity candle we had a slide show. Yes, the wedding was long.. 45 minutes long. But it was my wedding... :) The Hubs actually picked this song out. It's Josh Groban "When You Say You Love Me"...

Then it was time to kiss the bride! Whew. It was absolutely perfect. I can remember standing at the rehearsal and hearing the 'I Am' song by Nichole Nordeman and tears welled up in my eyes. It was exactly what I wanted. And I'm so thankful for that. I know that the details that add up to the wedding don't necessarily mean anything. The commitment before God is the important part. And that's what we tried to convey with those who attended. God joined us together. And we wanted God to be glorified in our marriage ceremony.

But it sure was nice that it was exactly what I had envisioned in my mind! ;)

Our reception was fabulous. We, like most bride and grooms, spent the entire time talking with our guests and not eating. My mom and aunt did a FANTASTIC job on decorating. As you walked into the reception there was a huge 'Christmas' tree. But it was decorated with fall decorations. This was the gift tree. There was a dried honey suckle vine archway going into the reception. We had a huge wrought iron gazebo in the center that had my table and cake in it. My cake was four tiered, carrot cake and red velvet alternating layers. The icing was tinted with cocoa to give it a tiny hint of color. Then the four food tables came out from the gazebo. We had lots of yummy food including my favorite Chick fil a chicken nuggets! Robby's table was decorated with lots of gold fabrics and glittery leaves. His cake was chocolate, decorated with strawberries and grapes. We found all kinds of fall dishes and things to serve the food in including these huge fall leaf platters. My very talented aunt made all of my flower arrangements for the tables. I wish I had pictures to show! I have a few pictures of the reception but that is one thing I regret. I didn't have my photographer take many pictures of the decorated reception and I really wish I would have had more taken!

Our white limo was suppose to be at the church at 6:30pm. And I let my family know that I wanted to know exactly when it arrived! Seriously, I was ready to get outta there! I love, loved my wedding and reception but we just didn't want a long reception. I wanted everyone to have enough time to eat and mingle and then see us off. So, we did the whole birdseed thing and off we went in our limo. We made a pit stop at our house and then took off to Atlanta to spend the night and travel to Savannah the next day. We were STARVING when we got to the hotel. Thankfully we had a lovely package of all of our food from the wedding. But when I opened it up, I noticed one thing was missing. CAKE! The only piece of our wedding cake that we had was the tiny bite we fed each other at the reception for pictures. I was so disappointed! I'm still not sure exactly who packed our 'to-go' basket, but whoever it was owes us some red velvet and carrot cake! At least I had my chicken nuggets though! We had a great time in Savannah honeymooning! You don't need to know all of the details of that trip, do you?!? :) Although, there is a funny story about shellfish and immodium. Just ask the Hubs the next time you see him! I pray that one day we'll be able to take a trip back there together.

Well, thank you for letting me take a trip down memory lane. I truly am blessed to have my husband! I am excited about what the future holds for us. I am so thankful that God gave me a wonderful man to walk through life with. God is good isn't He?

Friday, October 9, 2009

Menu Plan Monday 10/12

Vegetable Beef Soup (freezer), Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Spaghetti Bake, Green Beans

Brunswick Stew (I use Paula Deens chicken brunswick stew recipe and add lima beans to it. This week I'm using pork because I have a boston butt in the freezer but I have made it with chicken before. Both are good!), Corn Bread

Pancakes, Scrambled Eggs, Fruit

I still haven't made my roast from last week yet, so the soup may stay in the freezer this week! And I made the spaghetti bake today and stuck it in the fridge for after church but we ended up eating supper at my mom's tonight. So, it's already cooked, just needs to go in the oven tomorrow night! I love having meals in the freezer because if there happens to be a day that I don't have the chance to cook or something else comes up all I have to do is pop it in the oven or in a pot on the stove! With my soups, I rarely think to thaw! So, I just pull the huge block of soup out of the plastic freezer bag and pop it into my big stock pot. Then I turn it on low and just stir it occasionally as it thaws. Sometimes with frozen soups you need to add a little water to it as it thaws. Once it's heated, it's ready to eat! Easy Peasy! :)
And can I brag a little? I only spent $50.00 this week on groceries. Granted one of my meals is in the freezer, I still did pretty good!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Menu Plan ~ A day late! :)


BBQ Chicken Pizza, Corn on the cob

Chicken tortilla soup (from the freezer!)

Roast w/ Carrots and Potatoes, Biscuits

I just totally forgot about posting my menu yesterday! I had made one and saved it before I went grocery shopping Saturday (I loathe grocery shopping on Saturday, btw!) but just forgot to finish it and post it.

Last night I made the Spicy Chicken Noodle Casserole and it was pretty good. It was a new recipe and when I first bit into it I didn't think I liked it. But the more I ate it the more I liked it. It wasn't that it wasn't good that first bite, I just had in my mind that it would taste different. Anyways, the Hubs and Eli both liked it (and my mom who came by to drop something off and tried it). Luke didn't touch it, of course, but that was expected. The recipe actually came out of my last power bill. I'll post it below. I also tried something new with chicken yesterday. I found whole chickens on sale for 0.88 cents a pound. I had never cooked a whole chicken! I had seen recipes online about cooking them in the crock pot so I decided to try it. Here is what I did: Cut up one large onion and two lemons into slices. I also set aside a big spoonful of minced garlic and some of the house seasoning (recipe below) I use. I did all this before I started messing with the chicken to avoid getting chicken juice all over my kitchen! I just put the onions, garlic and lemons in a bowl and put a small bowl of the seasoning & olive oil out too. Remove the insides (this is the whole reason why I have never cooked a whole chicken. YUCK! But I did it and survived and you can too!) and chunk them! Rinse and pat your chicken dry (inside and out... yes, I 'patted' the inside of the chicken dry too). Stuff all of the lemons and as much of the onions & garlic inside the chicken. I wasn't able to get much onion in there but I did what I could. Rub the outside of the chicken with olive oil and the seasoning mix. Put the remainder of the onion on top of the chicken. Cook on high for about 5 hours or low 8 hours. I had a 3.5 lb bird and she was done after about 4 hours on high. You can also just use onion and garlic and not use lemons but I had a bag of lemons in the fridge that I needed to use up. Actually, the recipe I 'followed' used a sliced apple in place of the lemons. The chicken just fell apart and was really moist. It's a really good way to cook chicken for casseroles, burritos, soups. I used this chicken for the casserole recipe below and saved the rest for BBQ chicken pizza later in the week. I'm sure roasting a chicken in the oven is better if you're actually going to just eat the chicken by itself since it doesn't fall apart!

Spicy Chicken Noodle Casserole

2 roasted chicken breast, diced or shredded
Small package of egg noodles (I used half of a large bag)
2-3 stalks of celery, chopped
1 1/2 cups carrots, shredded
1 medium onion, chopped
2 TBS garlic, minced
8 oz sour cream (I used light)
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can rotel
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cups parmesan cheese, grated
1/3 c butter (left this out)
1 sleeve ritz crackers

Boil egg noodles, Drain, saving one cup of liquid (I forgot to do this so just added a plain ol' cup of water). Butter drained noodles with 1/3 c of butter (I didn't do this). Boil carrots and celery until fork tender. (I didn't do this either!!) Saute onion in a little olive oil (I added my carrots and celery to my onion and let them all saute) until fork tender. Add garlic and saute 2-3 more minutes. Turn heat off. Add the water to the veggies. Add sour cream, cream of chicken soup, rotel, chicken, cheddar cheese, and noodles and mix well. Pour into a greased casserole dish. On top layer parmesan cheese, Crushed ritz crackers and a few pieces of cubed butter. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Paula Deen's House Seasoning

1 cup salt
1/4 cup black pepper
1/4 c garlic powder

Combine all ingredients and store in an air tight container. Mine sits in my cabinet in one of those Rubbermaid bowls. Shake it before you use it because the pepper and garlic settle to the bottom. I sprinkle this on almost every meat I'm cooking!

Have a good week!