Dr. Jobe Martin chronicles his personal journey from traditional evolutionary scientist to biblical creationist. Dr. Martin himself was a Zen Buddhist, agnostic, evolutionist but his medical and scientific training would go through an evolution...rather a revolution when he began to study the Bible and animals that challenged the scientific assumptions of his education. This was the beginning of the evolution of a creationist.
This book takes a look at animals that break all the evolutionary "rules". It examines the many problems with evolutionary theory and shows why the Bible is an excellent book of science.
Friday, November 30, 2007
Last month I was overwhelmed with coupons. My previous $1 organizer had become far too small to hold my growing coupon stash. Inspired by Crystal's great post on her coupon organizing technique, I was determined to create a way to store and easily find my coupons without buying anything.
While trying to come up with a solution using what I had on hand, I pulled out my envelopes to start making a system similar to hers, and decided, why not just use the envelope box?
I took out several envelopes and started labeling them right on the envelope. I intended to add an index card like hers, but never got around to it. I just moistened the flap and folded it into the inside of the envelope. Now I can organize and find my coupons so easily! My favorite part of the coupon organizer was that I didn't have to buy something for it- I had the .97 box of envelopes in the office (and I only used a few of them!). And, if I ever find a good deal on a storage shoe box, I can just transfer my envelopes over to it.
Check out Crystal's blog for more frugal tips!
Thursday, November 29, 2007
A young, trim farmer with four or more children: According to a new study, that's the ideal profile for American men hoping to reach 100 years of age.
"We were surprised that having more than three children is beneficial to longevity -- based on previous studies by other authors, and common sense, quite the opposite could be expected," said study co-author Leonid Gavrilov, who conducted the study with his wife, Natalia Gavrilova, both of the University of Chicago's Center on Aging.
Here's the scoop:
We all have them- times when we were too cheap, times when we made poor financial decisions, and times when we were too extravagant. I have made many non-frugal and ultra-frugal decisions in the past and I want to share my mistakes with you! (I know, there might not be enough hosting space on Blogger! ;)
We are only human. No matter how hard we try, we will never stop making mistakes. Thankfully, our Lord is so forgiving, and His blood has covered our sins and mistakes. Through Him, we can get over ourselves, ask for and accept His forgiveness, stop feeling guilty about the past and go on to share what He has taught us. Sometimes we just need to let our guards down so that others can see where we've been and what we've learned from our mistakes. I know that for me, the process is also cathartic- it helps me to let go of all those mistakes by sharing them.
I hope you will join us next week for Frugal Confessions Thursday at Frugal Dollar!
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Since my husband bought me a Mac, I have been using iCal- an easy to use calendar program to plan my menus each week. I type in the new meals I want to cook and as the month goes on, I see all of the possible menus I could create from the previous month's meals. I can quickly move each meal title around to plan out my menu, as well as add in new ones for the week. After I am done planning, I can print out my calendar for the week or month if I wish, or just set alarms for each day's meal to remind me when I open up the computer.
If you don't have a Mac, you can use Outlook's calendar in the same manner. If you don't have a Mac or Microsoft Outlook, you can download the free calendar program Sunbird from Mozilla (the company who makes the browser Firefox- while you are there you can download that for free too. You will never go back to buggy Internet Explorer!).
Planning menus easily certainly works for me!
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Monday, November 26, 2007
Monday- Chicken and dumplings, bread, green beans
Tuesday- Fiesta chicken pasta with red bell peppers
Wednesday- Meatloaf and mashed potatoes
Thursday- Chicken, broccoli, and rice casserole with homemade bread
Friday- Pizza night
Sunday- Lamb/potato/onion crockpot dish (built from pantry contents!)
Check out more menu plans at OrgJunkie!
I was thinking on Thursday just how thankful I am for the blessings we have received this year. This was our second Thanksgiving in our lovely home, and this year not only do I have a wonderful and very loving husband and two precious little boys, God also gave me a healthy pregnancy, the easiest birth I have ever experienced, and a beautiful, healthy, smiling little baby girl.
He has given me one more year on this earth, and I am so very thankful for that. It makes me wonder what He has in store for the next year. As I look forward, it makes me think, am I serving Him with all of me? It's really the very least I could do for such a magnificent and loving God like Him. I don't deserve any of what He has given me, yet He loves me and still gives me all these blessings. What a wonderful God we are allowed to serve. I want to give Him all of me.
Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.
Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.
Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.
Thursday, November 22, 2007
I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
I love this idea. We don't have any special "boo-boo packs"- we usually use ice, which sometimes leaks when it melts. Making a Dawn pack is now on my to-do list! :)
Ice Pack – We are always in need of ice packs. Store-bought kinds can be expensive, and the fillers aren’t always guaranteed to be nontoxic. To make your own, simply fill a strong freezer bag halfway with Dawn Original dish soap (the blue kind, non-ultra). Double-bag for extra leak protection. These super-soft ice packs are great for all kinds of injuries. (We use snack-size freezer bags to make kid-sized boo-boo packs!)
We don't drink coffee at our house (we have another use for the coffee maker), but we love Mocha Frappuccino's (and now even Sonic has a very good ice cream based version!). The only problem is, if we bought ourselves Starbucks or Sonic everyday, our grocery bill would nearly double. We thought there must be a cheaper way to have these every day!
So to make our Mocha Frappuccino at home, we buy this cappuccino mix from Folger's, and add ice, Hershey's syrup, and milk in the blender to make a homemade cappuccino. My husband likes to drink these after lunch- he's our Frappuccino expert. One canister of the Folger's cappuccino mix costs about $3.50 and lasts us for six months or more. It's really good and so much cheaper than a $4 drink at Starbucks!
Check out more kitchen tips over at Tammy's Recipes!
Monday, November 19, 2007
Sunday, November 18, 2007
Friday, November 16, 2007
Most recently, I learned that equal quantity is not equal weight. This is very obvious in fruits and vegetables, but when you buy tortillas, and the two packages are sitting side by side, both 20 count, and one is cheaper, do you take the time to see if there is a difference in weight? Or do you just pick up the cheaper one? You could get 5 oz. more of tortillas for pennies. I've caught myself doing this time and again, because it's easy just to scan the quantity and price. The same with ice cream- they all seem the same size, but is one a half-gallon and one 1 1/2 quarts? If you pick up the 1 1/2 quart just because it slightly cheaper, you are probably not getting the best deal.
This also holds true for eggs at our store. The boys eat eggs for breakfast. On Monday, a dozen large eggs cost $1.86. I looked at the jumbo eggs, and they were $1.98. The large eggs were 24 oz and the jumbo eggs were 30 oz. It was only .13 for 25% more eggs! (The large eggs were .0775 cents per ounce. The jumbo eggs were .066 per ounce.) We needed those few extra ounces of protein for our growing little boys!
I noticed I never buy anything on the end cap (end of the aisle) without checking the section to price compare (or if you had one, a price book). On our way out, I saw a bottle of Karo syrup I needed for $1.93 in the holiday baking section in the main aisle. I picked it up, then went to the aisle where the rest of the corn syrup was located, where I saw the generic brand, same size for .92. I can tell you, I rarely find an end-cap item that is cheaper than it's competition.
I also always use competitor ads at Wal-Mart. They will price match local sales as long as they aren't what they call gimmicks- buy one get one free, or buy one get one for a penny. I added up the savings the last time I went shopping. I saved $12 on products I normally buy just by bringing in the ads.
Another strategy that saves our family a ton of money is don't be afraid to speak up. When I am shopping I look at the price of each item I buy when I pick it up. When I get to the register, I catch so many pricing errors because I watch the screen as the cashier scans each item. Don't feel bad for asking for the price they listed- it's your money, and you have the right to request that they honor their listed price.
On Monday, I bought some lemon juice and the price was off by 8 cents. I politely told the cashier the price it was supposed to be, and she quickly changed it for me. I had two, so I saved .16 just by saying a few words. On occasion I have had to wait while a manager checked the price. It has saved us so much money to carefully watch for price mistakes while checking out, and then after checking out, scanning the receipt to see if we had missed anything.
Wal-Mart also has a policy that if an item rings up incorrectly (and they go to verify it), you get the item for free if it's less than $3.00 or $3.00 off if it's more. A few weeks ago, we bought noodles that were on clearance on the end of the aisle, and they rang up at normal price. We didn't catch it until after we paid, so we went to the service desk and got a refund and got the item for free.
To get the most savings while you are shopping, the most important thing of all is to take your time. Comparing weights and quantities, checking prices, shopping competitor's ads, and watching carefully as you check out all take your time and concentration. I have seen in our lives that with just a little bit of extra time and effort you can save a ton of money at the grocery store.
Check out more frugal living tips at Crystal's blog.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
We went to Chipotle for dinner. We had been there once many years ago, but we were comparing it to our very favorite Freebird's burrito chain so we don't remember liking it. This time I ate a burrito bowl, and it was so good I am planning to replicate it here at home!
It had cilantro-lime rice, black beans, seasoned chicken, pico de gallo, sour cream, and romaine lettuce. I think my favorite part was the tangy rice- it makes my mouth water to think of it. It cost $5.75- not too awful for eating out, but I think we can make it for the whole family at that price! It's definitely going on next week's menu! :) YUM.
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
He also recommended Neutrogena T-Gel- fortunately we had some left over from after Noah was born. It's working now but it reminds me of flea and tick shampoo- very stinky.
I also found that placing each person's dirty clothes into individual hampers (as they are soiled) made a huge impact on the time I spend doing laundry. My husband, myself, the boys, and Isabella each have our own hamper. I only do laundry by person, when that person's hamper is full. This saves me a ton of time because I am only folding one person's clothes, so I have one pile and one location to take the clothes when they are folded. It seems to keeps me more motivated to fold the load as well.
I also try to do the laundry in the laundry room, straight out of the dryer so I don't have piles scattered all over the house. It's never going to get folded once it leaves the laundry room anyway. (The one person load works well too because I have limited space to fold). Sometimes, if it's quiet, I will bring my laptop in there and listen to Dave Ramsey or a sermon.
Making the laundry room a happy place, presorting our laundry, and actually doing all of the laundry in the laundry room really works for me.
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
I got to see all of their ingredients of course, and even though I could replicate the ingredients at home (and you can even buy their dressing there!), it just wasn't the same.
You see, the beauty of an Olive Garden salad is not the lettuce or tomatoes or the dressing (although those are great!). It's the plate. They serve their salad on chilled plates. It makes the lettuce crisp and keeps it cold while you eat it. There is not much worse than wilted, soggy lettuce from a hot plate!
The chilled plate is not their only secret- it's also the timing. It is common to serve the salad before a meal at a restaurant, but we don't do this at home! I think that we don't stop to enjoy the taste of a salad when we serve it at the same time as the rest of the food. It just becomes something to fill up on instead of savor. The complexity of the entree detracts from the taste of the salad.
I put this to the test at home. Usually I serve salad along side of the entree. Which means it gets to be warm pretty fast. I rinsed some plates and put them into the freezer when I started cooking and then served the salad separately from the entree. It was so much better than usual!
If you are looking for an easy (and frugal!) way to liven up your everyday salad (besides eating at the Olive Garden! :) take a few extra minutes to try chilling your plate and eating the salad before the entree. It makes it so much better!
Check out Tammy's Recipes for more kitchen tips!
Monday, November 12, 2007
Tuesday- Lamb and Black Bean Chili (we were given lamb, and this is the first time I have ever made lamb-anything!)
Wednesday- Tacos, Beans and Chips with Tangy Guacamole Dip
Thursday- Baked Potatoes with Queso, Salsa, and Sour Cream
Friday-Lamburgers with Avocado (if lamb actually tastes good and we feel like eating it again! :)
Saturday- Pizza night
Sunday- Chicken noodle soup and homemade bread
Check out more menu plans at Orgjunkie!
Friday, November 09, 2007
Thursday, November 08, 2007
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
Here's what we bought:
The total before sales and coupons was $98.46, and I only spent $9 ECB's and $0.34 out of pocket. I got back $3.49 in ECB's. So my "total spent" was $5.48 for all of this! Of course only 34 cents came out of my pocket this week, the other $5.14 was from rolled over ECB's. I still have about $15 left in ECB's from last week.
Here's what I got:
1 Trail Mix GrapeNuts
2 Large bags M&M's
2 Pampers Diapers Size 1 & 5
1 BC Powder
1 Blood Glucose Monitor
4 John Frieda Hair Products
1 Gallon Milk
At the bottom of my receipt it says, Today You Saved: $151.09. Oh yeah, baby! :)
Check out more deals others got this week at MoneySavingMom!
Tuesday, November 06, 2007
My question this week is now that we have a two month old, I am trying to get back into a schedule/routine, but she just won't sleep without me holding her. We've tried the bouncer/vibrating chair, and a playpen in the same room, but she will not sleep unless I am physically touching her. I love my sling but there are things that are difficult to do with her, like showering, drying my hair, sweeping, dishes, etc. Do you have any tips or tricks that help you get your baby to sleep without being in your arms?
Well, I noticed a serious lack of noise, so I went to investigate. Expecting any number of awful things like the pantry contents being dumped on the floor or two little boys coloring on the wall, I was a little more than surprised to see this:
Elijah was rocking Noah in his arms, singing to him. Noah was pretending to be the baby with his old pacifier we found under the bed.
My little boys never cease to amaze me. :)
Monday, November 05, 2007
Monday: Taco Salad
Tuesday: Beef Enchiladas, rice, and beans
Wednesday: Chicken and dumplings (I'm hoping there might be a chill in the air to go with them!)
Thursday: Meatloaf (didn't get around to making that one last week)
Friday: Black beans and Mexican fiesta rice
Saturday: Chicken Spaghetti
Breakfasts: eggs, cereal, oatmeal, toast
Lunches: leftovers, soup, sandwiches
Check out more menu plans at Menu Plan Monday!
Sunday, November 04, 2007
Thanks to the Bargain Shopper Lady, I saw this great deal at the Victoria's Secret online store. Buy any sweater (even clearance!) and get free boucle hat, gloves and scarf! Even sweeter than that, add these codes to get a free lip gloss 4 pack, another free lip gloss, and $5 off your first purchase! All that for about $17 shipped if you buy a clearance sweater- sounds like a few awesome Christmas gifts!
Saturday, November 03, 2007
This week's CVS deals- I spent $8 ECB's and .84 and left with $8.99 in ECB's, so I made .15 on all of this!
Soy joy bars 4/4
2 packs gum
rhoto eye drops 4.99 (free)
Walgreen's- I had a $10 reward I had to use before the 8th and we needed diapers and mousse, so it wasn't quite a money-maker or anything. I spent $2.46 after coupons and rewards. Not too bad... :)
Friday, November 02, 2007
Here's my wishlist:
Raising Godly Children $45
A Biblical Blueprint for a Happy Home $20
Passionate Housewives Desperate for God $20
Building a Family that Will Stand $30
Back to Genesis $45
The Return of the Daughters $20
Raising Maidens of Virtue $20
Lion and Cross Shield and Sword 2 pack $35
Family Evangelism $10
I never win these random drawings but I keep trying! Maybe one lucky day.... :)
Lies Women Believe… About God
The author begins the chapter with how what we believe about God is the foundation of what we believe. DeMoss says, “What we believe about God determines the way we live. If we believe things about Him that aren’t true, we will eventually act on those lies and end up in bondage.”
In the first part of this chapter, she goes on to discuss several lies that women believe about God. One of my favorites was:
“God is not really enough.”
“When it comes down to it, we don’t believe God’s Word is sufficient to deal with our problems…. Sure I need God. But I need Him plus close friends, I need Him plus good health; I need Him plus a husband, I need Him plus children, I need Him plus a job that pays enough; I need Him plus a house with a microwave, a washer/dryer, a garage, and a fresh paint job…”I see this lie happening in my own life. I know in my head that God is faithful and will provide for me, but my heart doesn’t quite believe it, so my hands get busy trying to solve the problem or come up with a way to get what I need.
Realizing this behavior is a based on a terrible lie really convicted me about my sin of unbelief. I am not fully giving over my burdens to the Lord, and sometimes I just don’t want to find the answers in His Word because I know it is not what I want to hear. I need God plus a perfectly clean house, plus a vehicle with a 3rd row seat, plus perfectly behaved children.... and the list goes on.
DeMoss says, “Do we truly believe God is enough, or are we looking to others things and people to fill the empty places of our hearts- food, shopping, friends, hobbies, vacations, our job, or our family?”
God’s truth is:
Psalm 73:25- 26
Whom have I in heaven but You?
And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You.
My flesh and my heart fail;
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
God’s Word is truth and reminds me of how incapable I am of anything without Him. It reassures me that I don’t have to do it without Him, and that he is ALL I need.
Stay tuned for the next installment in the review of Lies Women Believe: And the Truth That Sets Them Free by Nancy Leigh DeMoss.
Thursday, November 01, 2007
If she needs to be put in her bouncy chair or laid down, she is surrounded by her older brothers, talking to her and showing her their toys, or singing to her. She gets so much more attention than the oldest did when he was a baby.
If she cries and I can't get to her, her brothers will retrieve the pacifier and give it to her. She has someone around her almost all the time. In some ways, I think it's actually easier to have three children than it is to have just one. You have two little helpers when the new baby comes.
I am holding her in my lap right now, and she is laughing and cooing at Elijah's made-up silly song for her. It is so precious to see the interaction between them. And instead of having just two loving parents, she's has four people that love her everyday.