Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year to all

I hope everyone goes into the new year with a happy heart! It has been a tough year for many in our country and as we keep them in our prayers, I hope we all have a wonderful start and a wonderful continuation of the new year. We will be staying home tonight as a family as we always do. I hope that those of you who go elsewhere have safe travels tonight.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The crochet shop

I am going to start selling some of my crochet items in order to help boost our income a bit. Beloved is still looking for a job, and money just keeps getting tighter and tighter. I am hoping that by selling some of my things it will help. I currently will be taking orders for dishcloths and hot pads. Soon, I hope to add rag dolls (not crochet of course) to my sales. If you are interested or know someone who is, let me know!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Eve

Well technically now Christmas day. I just went to a wonderful service where I was reminded how many of us make lists or ask for things for our birthday. And how Jesus gave to us on his birthday. Please remember him today and thank him and the Father for the wonderful gift we were given.

I want to share a poem with you written by Delphia Cline Freeman

When the hustle and bustle is over
And the last of the gifts has been wrapped,
And the cookies and cakes are all ready
For the big Christmas plans you have mapped;
When the children are quiet and dreaming
Of the presents Saint Nick will bestow,
And the fire on the hearth burns less brightly,
And the clock has struck twelve long ago;
You relax by the embers and ponder
On this happiest evening of all…
On the meaning of Christmas to mankind
By Christ’s birth in the low cattle stall.
In the giving of gifts upon Christmas,
People pattern the Father above
Who, in giving His Son, gave His best gift…
So the meaning of Christmas is love.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

My mental picture of the manger has changed

We were talking in Sunday school today and I learned some new things. Apparently stables in that time in that part of the world were caves. And managers were carved as well as possible into the rock walls. I had always pictured the manger as wooden with plenty of soft hay in it. Rock would have been so hard for a precious baby. Jesus never did have an easy life. One of the questions in Sunday school was why didn't they stay with family. Of course we have no real answer to that, but we tossed around many such as maybe all of the family had to travel back to the hometown perhaps none of them lived there anymore. And I wondered if family would not take them because Mary was unmarried and pregnant. So many things we can only guess about, such as the actual day of the birth of Christ, but the truth is something we have facts on. Our Savior Jesus was born on a cold night and the angels sent the shepherds to see him. Why shepherds? Well we have no certain answer there either. We know the shepherds were not looked highly upon so maybe it was a blessing to them. Perhaps it is because Jesus is our Shepard sent to save the father God's sheep. Regardless, Christ is the reason for this wonderful season. So as you have a wonderful Christmas, don't forget about Christ.

One more quick fact. We say "merry" Christmas meaning "joyful" Christmas. But when the term was first used, "merry" was a term used for "peaceful". So peace to you all and have a wonderful holiday.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Well if it isn't one thing

It is a whole lot of other things. Today the sewing machine is acting up. The needle keeps getting caught in the bobbin area and bending. DH helped me take it apart and clean it all up. It is still doing it. I am out of my regular needles and am using some different ones. I am hoping that it is just a needle issue. If not I am not sure where to go from there. I can't complain to much, I did get it at a pawn shop about eight years ago for $20. But, I know it still has life in it so I hope we can get it fixed.

On top of that I think the router for the computer is going out. So I have to replace it since I count on the computer to work from home. So I will be having to replace it tonight. We just can't live without it.

My son will be 19 on tomorrow. Seems like it was just yesterday that he was a tiny baby sitting in my arms.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

How about some quick cheap gifts to make up?

There are recipes for making lip gloss here. At Wal-Mart, I found some little containers they call "travel jars" in the section with the small travel and trial sizes to put them in. I even have some ideas for other flavors but have yet to try to make them.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

It is a busy season

Tis the season of being very busy with all the hustle and bustle of the holiday. But let's not forget the reason for it! We have to remember to look at everything we are thankful for and take the time to express our thanks!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

An awesome sermon today

I really wish I would have kept DD in service today instead of letting her go to Kidz church. We had a sermon about the real meaning of Christmas. You know, the meaning that so many people forget? I will share with you three quotes from pastor that I really loved! "God set apart all his power to become a baby, to show his love for us". Meaning here of course, that he did not have to make his son a man and therefore put him though everything he went through, but he did to show his love for us.

The second one is quite simple but meaningful I thought. "God takes that which is common and makes it spectacular". Isn't that just the truth? Think how boring life would be without all the wonderful things God has given us.

The last one was "Christianity is not a religion of rituals and rules, but a relationship with Christ. It is not restrictive but loving". That my friends is powerful! We can really squash some of the excuses that some people use to not follow Christ with that one now can't we? Yes, God loves us. So much he gave us his son. So in this season where we have so much fun showing our love for others by giving, don't forget to show some love to God.

And we are planning for next year!

Beloved told me today he had wanted to get me a deal to hold my yarn as I crochet so that I can spin it off of the skein on the floor next to me. He told me he had looked around and they are pricey. Fine I told him. We already decided that Christmas next year is going to be even more homemade than next year....Make me one! I reminded him that he really is a smart guy! Now, mind you that I have no clue what he is talking about, I just know that he remembers his mother (whom I regret passed before beloved and I ever met) having one.

My list of things I want to make for next year are crocheted dishcloths and pot holders, perhaps a quilt or two and some rag dolls! I would love to hear what the rest of you are planning to make!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Went to the thrift store today

And found two table cloths to make some bags for our gifts. Basically they are pillowcases. You cut them to size, fold in half sew two side seams and then hem the top. Or if you are lucky use the factory hem. We sometimes use fabric from the fabric store, but the thrift store is of course much cheaper. I also got baskets while there to put the bath salts in. Here is Erica showing a gift wrapped in one of our bags made from the table cloths, next to an identical gift and a picture of her with her Grandma's bath salt basket. While at the thrift store, I found me a sewing basket! I have been looking for one there for months and I finally scored one and for only $2! So we are mostly all done now for Christmas I would like to pick up one or two more things for Beloved. He is always so hard for me to buy for. Any ideas? We do try to keep Christmas on Christ, but I also love to give people things. In fact, I don't do it just for Christmas, I tend to do it all year long lol. But no one seems to mind.

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Thursday, December 10, 2009

My daughter is so proud

And I am happy to see her being so proud of something so frugal. We have made our bath salts. She put the salt in quart canning jars, added the essential oils and shook, shook, shook. Then she added the food coloring and did the same. From there she funneled it into baby food jars from freecycle. We are still in the process of printing up labels and putting them on and the pretty material on top. Recycled from an old favorite worn out dress of course. Here she is with her picture all proud.


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And she has finished her cocoa cups. These are for teachers and grandmas and friends. She used recycled coffee mugs from the thrift store (.50 cents each). Inside she put two hot cocoa packets, some Hershey's kisses and two candy canes. Less than $2 each for each gift!

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Now we just need to get to the thrift store for some sort of baskets for the bath salts. We are doing five jars per gift. I am hoping we can find something nice to package them on the cheap!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Old fashioned simple Christmas

This is the simple and frugal blog after all! This year I have been very busy with handmade gifts. I have a quilt, crocheted dishcloths, crocheted scarves, bath salts (in recycled baby food jars from free cycle and covered with pretty cloth from an old worn out dress),homemade candles, and coffee mugs from the thrift store that will be filled with hot cocoa mix, some Hersheys kisses and a candy cane. Such cheap gifts. The final cost of most of these will be under $2 each. I am hoping that next year it will be even more handmade and even less purchased gifts. Many purchased gifts here are needs though. Santa always brings socks, underwear and the like. Homemade food treats are also given to our children! Next year, I may even try to make some rag dolls.

This coming Sunday evening, we are going caroling with the church! I have not done that in years, and I am looking forward to it.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Wow what a great and tiring weekend

This weekend was my work party in LA. It is so wonderful to be able to work part-time from home and for such a great company. The CEO is wonderful, takes great care of all of the employees, and has for sure not forgotten where she came from. She is an absolute delight to work for. Every year she has a huge company Christmas party where she flys out all the workers and their family for a huge deal at her house. She pays all expenses for the trip, and every child gets a gift from Santa. She has entertainment from bouncy balloons, to a petting zoo and pony rides. The food rolls all night in all varieties. She hires Limos to get everyone around LA except for those who choose to rent a car, and for those she pays for that as well. She recently wrote a book and it is a great read. Our "manager" recently had to leave the company for personal reasons that she needed to deal with at home, and we love her so much. She had the book that our department has been mailing from one to the other of us. I had it and took to the party to pass to the next person, and got it signed by Teri so when she gets it back she will be so surprised! Teri was so wonderful about signing it and wrote a wonderful message in it! I really do think I work for the best company in the world. Here is the BOOK! If you are looking to save some money, it is high on my suggested list. I have purchased the book after reading it, for all the great recipes!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Helping others challenge

I love helping others. It is something that gives me great joy. But we have to remember that there are many ways to help others. For instance we did adopt a little girl from our church food outreach to buy a gift for this year. That is a wonderful thing and we did enjoy shopping for her and I am going to make her a scarf for Christmas as well. But, we must not forget that there are other ways to help others. Many of them don't require any money. Do you have a friend who is feeling down? If so can you find some way to make their day a little brighter? That also is helping others. Or maybe you have a friend who doesn't drive or doesn't have a car and you can take them to the grocery store with you when you go. That doesn't cost you anything, you were going anyway. It is the Christmas season and people are thinking of doing for others. But lets also remember that others need help all year. It can be something big, it can cost money if you have it to spend. But keep in mind that many times it is the small things that are a huge help and so many of them don't cost us a dime. So friends I am challenging you this month to help someone. Then you can post here and tell us you did. If you want you can tell us what you did but you don't have to tell. I did something for a friend today that I know helped her a lot, and it didn't cost me anything. All I did was take her to the store with me and show her how to make coupons work for her. She got more groceries than she ever has been able to at one time. And, she still has grocery money left. I got a great hug out of the deal and that folks really made my day.

Here is a web site. It is called Do One Nice Thing. It has lots of ideas to help others. Maybe you can find something you like. Of course any idea you have of your own is awesome as well.