Saturday, June 18, 2011

"Giedds Get a Cat", Take 2

A few weeks after Aaron was born, Shasta was ready for his new home with us. The kids adore him and he's a great cat.

He loves the kids' Zhu-Zhu pets! He bats them around as if they are real hamsters.

He fits in pretty well around here.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Getting a Hold on my Grocery Budget

I've been wanting to share this with you all for a little while now and I'm excited that I finally get to do it now!

Grocery University couponing course

Something that has extremely beneficial to me in the last few months is a little audio series and PDF book combination called Grocery University. You might have noticed that one of the blogs that I follow is called Springs Bargains, and I've been reading that particular blog for quite a few years, thanks to my good friend, Michelle. Well, last year Carrie Isaac who writes the blog, published Grocery University~ an 2+ hours audio series in Mp3 format that you can listen to on your iPod or your computer and a 40 page pdf book all detailing how to get coupons and then organize them, how to use coupons, when to use coupons, where to use coupons and how to get the absolutely best deal on your groceries. It teaches you how to stockpile groceries at their rock bottom prices and never pay retail again. I printed out the book and I listened to the audio files as I walked on my treadmill. Ok, I must humbly add that I've been successfully using coupons for many years and I learned a boatload of new information.

Instant Digital Download of Grocery University

This series gave me a new perspective on couponing, a better system of organizing my shopping trips and a huge shot in the arm regarding saving money and extending our resources. Let me mention something else. The amount of money that you spend buying the course will be saved in the first month of your grocery shopping, I guarantee it. Did I mention that it's written by a Christian lady who understands godly stewardship and encourages tithing? Grocery University is a fabulous investment and I highly recommend it if you are serious at all about saving money.Link

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Party Weekend

This past Saturday, we had a great time at a park celebrating 2 good friends' graduations from high school. Both of those girls are wonderful friends and also 2 of our babysitters and tremendous blessings to us. Congrats Rachel and Morgan!

And Lindy, it was so great to see you and your crew again!

Look how dirty this guy gets after an hour of 'treasure hunting' with friends.

Here's Dabney and her sweet friend, Noel.

About 30 seconds after got into the car to go home, they all looked like David, below.

On Sunday after church, we had some of Adam's favorite people over for a little party celebrating our little 2 year old.

(insert Rachel's picture of the inside of the watermelon cake here)

Rachel, I think you take more pictures of my family than I do!

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Long Time Gone

I know, I know~ I'm very delinquent. It's been more than 3 weeks since my last post. My apologies. Consider that my maternity leave. Since then, Tim had a wonderful week off and I got to sleep to ridiculous hours of the morning, my wonderful mother came to visit and we've been reorganizing our house and our school and our lives. I came up with a fabulous new schedule and wrote it out on a big white board. Adam was kind enough to erase it with his foot within 24 hours. (Good thing I had it copied elsewhere...)

I feel like I've been in a time warp! Aaron is growing by leaps and bounds, the big kids are finishing up their school year, and tomorrow our Adam will turn 2 years old.

Some days I feel like I'm just holding on to sanity by a thread. It turns out, having 5 kids (7 and under) is a bigger project than I thought. There's a lot to do, many little people are talking to me at the same time and at least 3 of them need something from me at the same moment.

However, there is so much joy around here! We all adore Aaron, I get hand-drawn cards and love letters everyday, and when Daddy comes home, there's a spontaneous party in the foyer.

I've begun exercising again. I've been doing it at naptime for the youngest 4. Dabney stays awake and "babysits" Aaron while I'm in the basement. That 45 minutes everyday gets me sweating and brainstorming and relaxing and I come upstairs afterwards a few hundred calories lighter and more prepared to face the remainder of the afternoon. It's a huge blessing.

I love my job more and more although the challenges abound. I love buying huge amounts of food and cooking it for my kids and husband and filling our freezers and pantry. There's something very satisfying about hauling out a huge cart-full of groceries from Costco and then having Tim bring up the rear with his huge cart-full of kids. (I've been trying harder to receive those 'helpful' comments from strangers with more grace.)

So, there we are. We're still alive and still adjusting and still learning and really enjoying Aaron's company. I'll be back again soon~ I promise! I wanted to share some things that have helped me be a better manager of this crazy household that might help you too.

Enjoy the somewhat random pictures (courtesy of my mom) below!

This picture here is for you all who say I never post pictures of myself.

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