Monday, April 25, 2011

Blessings Monday


I’m blessed to be afforded the opportunity to go to a work-related conference later this week.  With so many budget cuts in the workplace, I’m feeling really blessed to have this opportunity.  What’s even better?  Keith is taking some time off to join me and enjoy some history!  Yay! 

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Saturday’s Savings and Meal Planning

There is really no need to spend on groceries this weekend.  I will hit Rite Aid today or tomorrow to use my perks before they expire.  We will only have two meals at home this week.  We have some salad that we need to use up.  Maybe I’ll make grilled chicken salad for one meal and spaghetti for another.   

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Cached Out

We spent most of our day geocaching.  I’m so glad the rain held off until early evening!


We started at Erma Kost Trail in Hampton Township.  About a month ago we dropped some trackable items in a cache out there, not realizing that the cache was deactivated.  It was there.  It’s just out of service on the web.  So we thought why not run out there and snatch them again so we can move them along.  While we were there, we completed a multi-cache that we had tried to get before but was a bust. 


From there we hit one at a park along Rt 8 in Hampton Township.  Looked for one at Good Will in Gibsonia, which we failed to find.  Then we hit Adams Township Park where we found 4/5.  SAWEET!  


On the way home we hit Richland Township Park.  We found three there and also stopped to admire Penn Tree, which is a REALLY old tree and mighty large.  Then it started to rain. 


All in all, we found 10 out of 13 caches today!  That’s the most we’ve ever searched for in one day.  What was the best part of the day?  Just spending quality time with my Sweetie!  I love him!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Blessings Monday

Just a few blessings for which I am grateful:

  • home that is affordable and adequate
  • gainful employment
  • reliable transportation
  • precious and unique pets
  • loving husband
  • washer n’ dryer at home
  • throw-rug in the living room
  • coupons and sales
  • free lamps
  • hand-me-down couch, entertainment center, and tv
  • soft bed and pillows
  • photos… precious memories
  • pantry and freezer full of food
  • sweet smelling soap
  • lovely pansies on our porch
  • soft cuddly fleece
  • air-freshener
  • computer, blackberry, cellphone
  • wine
  • Bible, Bible Study, and friends who are in the Word
  • Prayer warriors
  • Exercise, exercise equipment, exercise buddies

So many things… and so often taken for granted.  Thank you Lord for so many blessings!


Sunday, April 17, 2011

Saturday Savings & Meal Plan

I’ve been clipping coupons a little at a time.  I haven’t had time to compare the ads.  I didn’t get my Sunday paper yet so I don’t have the Rite Aid ad yet.  Grrrr…  Anyway, I already have some ideas for meals this week. 

  1. Beef roast with red potatoes, carrots, and either green beans or salad
  2. Honey Mustard pork chop with beets and peas
  3. Smoked sausage frittata with red pepper and onion
  4. Chicken Scampi over pasta with side salad
  5. Mamwich Sandwich and potato chips
  6. Salad

I need to pick up salad makings and some fruit to snack on this week.  I’ll also need garlic for the scampi and probably another red or green pepper.  That’s about it!  We can pretty much eat from the pantry and freezer.  Yay!

2011 Horseback Riding Season

Penny will be SEVENTEEN this year!  WOW!


It’s finally underway… the riding season for 2011.  I have grand plans to put many a mile on my pony this year.  By mid or late May she should be needing some shoes to protect her toes.  I shall not get them unless I’m riding enough to need them.


Thursday, April 14, 2011 was the first ride.  It was like riding a pogo stick for an hour and a half.  She bounced the jig pretty much the entire time.  Well, I guess that is to be expected for my first ride of the year.  She’ll eventually come around.  I was satisfied to just make it out and back safe and sound. 


The second ride was Friday, April 15, 2011 and Keith joined us riding Sir.  It was windy.  What was I thinking?  Actually, we stayed in the woods as much as we could and it wasn’t that bad.  She did have a couple of ‘moments’ but we stuck it out.  She even played in the creek.  Another spin on the books.  Just getting started.  I do think that I’m going to try a different bit for a while and see if that helps any.  We shall see.  Here’s to many fun rides in 2011. 

Camilla The Gorilla

We are trialing an addition to our mad-house.  This lil’ gal, affectionately called “Kitty” by her former owner has found our home to be adequate so far.  I was going to call her “Tripper” because that is why she is here… she tripped her former owner a few too many times.  I saw on her papers from the humane society that her given name is “Camilla.”  After seeing her reaction to Wizzy tasting her food last night… “Camilla the Gorilla” it is, although, I confess that I’ve been calling her “Lovey” because she just IS.  She loves all over me… SO affectionate.


Like most women, she is obsessed with  taking baths. 


She clips coupons with me.


She’s explored all the nooks and crannies, even behind the couch.  She’s been exploring mostly all afternoon.  Crystal is angry and Wizard is curious but still establishing boundaries.


She ‘thinks’ she’s white trash?!?!  She LOVES boxes and this one is just her size!


She’s perfectly content resting on the back of the couch… just like the other kitties do. 


And here she has taken up residence IN the trash can.  Thankfully, this is only paper trash!  Silly girl!  I gave her a bed with a nice soft blanket, but empty boxes and trash cans full of newspaper is what she desires.  Ugh!


So there she is… Consider yourself to have met her.  If you visit our household, she will offer a MUCH warmer welcome.  She’s already met the Zom’s and showed plenty of affection to them.  What can I say…  she’s a lover and if all goes well a keeper too! 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

This Weeks Menu

I never did get around to setting the menu, though I have it all planned out in my head.  Smile


1)  Smoked Sausage w/ cabbage & potatoes

2)  Ham slice w/ green beans almandine and potato

3)  Lemon Herb Chicken with rice and peas

4)  Beef Roast (crockpot) w/ carrots/red potatoes and salad

5)  Honey Mustard Pork Chop with salad and beets


That’s the plan…  including the past 2 days. 

Wednesday’s C.O.W. (Coupon of Wisdom)



Job 1:8

Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil."

My Handy-Hubby is studying Job and also my Girls Group is embarking upon the same.  I appreciate that K is tackling it because I can lean on him for insight.  He and I had a brief discussion last night before I hit the sack.  We looked at Job 1:8 (above).  These words are also repeated in the following chapter.  Hmmm…  I found it interesting that it was God’s idea to send Satan after Job.  See there… even our most strenuous situations are part of the Lord’s plan.  God ‘allows’ bad things to happen to good people and in some twisted way that we cannot fathom, it’s part of His plan, his PERFECT plan.  Imagine that!

Sunday, April 10, 2011


I hit Rite Aid today.  I paid $8.46 out of pocket and took home $22.00 in Rite-aid dollars for next week.  Here’s what I got:


2 large bottles of Gillette Body Wash

4 John Freida hair products!!!

8 Bic Razors


I combined sale products with coupons and used my Rite Aid dollars from last week…  My receipt says that I saved $57.99 in COUPONS!!!


I have a list for Giant Eagle for tomorrow evening and then I’ll finish the meal plan.



Friday, April 08, 2011

2011 Ultimate Blog Party


Late, but not over…  Just for kicks I thought it would be fun to participate.  A few people read my blog, but really… I just ramble.  BUT… for those who might stop by I should write a little bit about who I am…


I’m in my 30’s (thankfully still).  Blonde hair, blue eyes, and a little bit chubby.  I’m married to a wonderful man for more than 10 years now.  We met on the internet.  Falling in love wasn’t intentional, but I guess that’s the best way for it to happen.  He’s witty and kind and supportive and fun and I would just be lost without him!   He was a city-boy and I was a country-gal.  Together we are an eclectic mix of contemporary-country.


I like anything country… blue jeans, flannel shirts, ball-caps, fields full of daisies, muddy boots, farming, gardening, shoveling, milking cows, driving trucks, tractors (especially Farmall), and of course anything horse related.  I have a pony named Penny.  She’s adorable and sassy and I plan to ride her for many a mile this summer.  I’m an outdoorsy gal.  When I’m not horseback riding, I like to go fishing and hiking. 



I work at a hospital.  My job is to check the credentials of the practitioners who are or want to work there.  Basically I make sure they are trained to do what they want to do and that they are who they say they are and that they maintain the competency to perform the work they desire.  I am blessed to have a job that is interesting and appreciate the compensation.  I’ve been working there for almost 10 years now.


About blogging… as I said it’s mostly babble.  Specifically I’m keeping a journal of some of the days/events of my life for future reference.  I’m also trying to be deliberate in establishing healthy routines.  I’m aspiring to be deliberately thankful and praising God for all the blessings in my life.  I’m trying to be thrifty with our wages by clipping coupons, shopping the sales, and managing our menu so we don’t overspend on eating out.  I’m also trying to put more focus on physical activity and eating more healthily.  It’s all a journey and I’m making memories as I go.  The blog is a good way to look back and reassess progress. 


So that’s the scoop, for what it’s worth.  That’s who I am. 

Special Date

Keith has been pining for years to go to a home-opener baseball game.  It’s NEVER been in the budget.  Since we recently paid off a huge bill, we decided to splurge on a date-day…  The Pirates Home Opener! 


So yesterday we donned our favorite ball-caps and headed for the Burgh.  We parked at Station Square and took the ferry to the Stadium.  The rivers are up, the Mon Wharf is closed for flood stage.  The water is muddy and murky, but the view of the city from the point was still lovely for a spring pass-through.


We got to the game and found our seats, which were AWESOME, by the way.  Seven rows back on the baseline, just past 2nd base.  Our favorite players are McCutchen, Jones, and the hometown boy, Walker.  Neil Walker is from Gibsonia and his family goes to our church.  The guys in front of us heckled the umpire and Hill, from the other team until he got both of their attention.  Honestly, the heckling was WAY more entertaining than the game, as we LOST.  This is only the 2nd game I’ve ever been to when they lost.  Bummer!  None the less, here we are enjoying the 7th Inning Stretch. 



So afterwards we stayed and got some autographs.  Well… Keith got them.  He’s like the king of autographs.  Only three players stopped, but he got all three of them to sign is baseball and walked away a slightly more satisfied fan. 


So, we missed our ferry ride back to Station Square, but never fear… I had wanted to hike yesterday too, and that we did.  We strolled along the river, across the Roberto Clemente bridge, past the Byham Theatre (I wondered where that was), across Liberty Avenue, and into Market Square where we stopped for a coffee.  There are FOUR coffee shops in Market Square.  From there we passed through the PPG buildings where we admired the height of the tallest one.


We continued along the riverfront and across another bridge which brought us past the Grand Concourse restaurant and the Station Square bars, right back to our parking spot under the trestle at the far end.  Whew!  What a hike, but I guess we accomplished both of our hearts desires… ballgame and hiking. 


All in all… it was a very nice and very much needed date-day for us.

Monday, April 04, 2011

Blessings Monday



Times are tough considering the economy.  There has been downsizing at work and some people have either retired early or have been eliminated.  It reminds me how blessed I am to have a job.  I’m so grateful for the provision which comes from employment. 


I was reminded tonight of the blessing of having my beloved Penny back in my grips.  I was faithful in letting her go and following the calling of the Lord for my Sweetie.  God blessed the sacrifice I made in so many ways.  I’m so grateful to have her and to enjoy her so much.  I’m looking forward to warmer weather and long rides.


Each time I go out hiking, I’m reminded how blessed I am to have such an abundance of well marked and maintained hiking trails close to home.  For many years I took those kind of trails for granted.  Now that I’m addicted to hiking, my appreciation grows with each new found trail we conquer.  Likewise I am so blessed with friends and family who accompany me and encourage me in these quests.


Three simple things yet not even a snippet of all the blessings my Faithful  Father bestows upon me.  I am so grateful for a loving God!   

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Saturday Savings & Meal Planning… a day late

I didn’t feel like shopping yesterday.  I ad a pile of coupons to clip and sort and some sales flyers to review.  Yesterday all I could think of was getting outside to hike.  I pulled it together today though:


Good deals this week:

  • 8 bags of Lays potato chips for $1.50/bag
  • 3 Blistex for 50 cents/each
  • 12 boxes of Granola bars $1.29/box
  • 3 Super Poligrip (for Dad) All FREE + $3.98 rebate
  • 14 packs of Gum 50 cents each
  • 1 Bagel Crisps $1.50/bag
  • 2 Gillette Proglide Razor sets 99 cents/each
  • 3 boxes of Kleenex brand hand-towels 50 cents/box

Needless to say, I think we are well stocked in the snack category for a while.  Keith snacks frequently, so this is good.  There was plenty more, but these were the best deals.


Meal plan this week:

  1. Ham slice with green beans almandine and fresh beets
  2. Spaghetti with salad
  3. Eggs, bacon, and toast
  4. Chicken stir-fry
  5. Cheeseburger w/ chips

Saturday, April 02, 2011

SIX in ONE Day!

I was pining to hit the trails today.  With nobody jumping at the chance, my Sweetie finally succumbed to my desire.  He is so precious.  Just one hour is all I asked for.  You know, when we make the move to go caching, it’s never just an hour.  Usually we go for about four finds.  Today, SIX!!!  In the beginning it was snowing and raining at the same time.  We got pretty wet on our 2nd find.  I thought for sure that he would be done after that, but no… we kept on going.  All in North Park.  We have found the majority of the caches at North Park.  There are only a few left to find.  We walked a good long ways on the green dot trail today.  It was a little bit muddy, but a great hike.  Every time that I hike, my appreciation for trails and parks grows significantly.  And… I so love my Sweetie.  Smile



These are at Poot’s Loot cache in North Park.