I enjoy looking over the stats each month. It is neat to see the things that interest people the most. Some of these articles have been around for a while and yet every month they are the top reads. There are some oldie but goodies here. I hope you’ll enjoy checking these out.
Tomato Casserole Recipe (Yumm!)
A Thrifty Way to Stuff Shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child (Samaritan’s Purse)
Which article is your favorite?
November 25, 2011
What a year it has been! During this year I experienced a reduction in workforce in the public schools. Both of my parents had major surgery. My family moved across the state and thankfully we are closer to my parents. I am employed again, working 9-10 hour days, and commuting two hours each day.
If you’re wondering why you haven’t seen me around here, it’s because of these things. Sometimes in life it’s just best to step back from a few things so that you can survive and/or put first the things that are most important to you.
Through all of these things I can still find reason to give thanks. I am blessed. I believe that God honors an attitude of gratitude.
Here are some of things I am thankful for (in no particular order):
1. My husband. Like every couple, we fight and argue. He loves the Lord and is a wonderful father to our children. With God on our side, we’ll make it through many more years together.
2. My kids. They are both healthy, smart, and love Jesus. What more could a parent want?
3. My parents. They taught me to be kind, considerate of others, to help those in need, and to love God.
4. My health. I am so very thankful that I have the strength to complete my job each day and care for my family.
5. My family. I am blessed with a brother, cousins, aunt, uncles, in-laws, and grandparents.
6. My friends. I have a few really true and loyal friends in my life. They are the ones that you can talk to about anything and they will be there to steer you in the right direction or just to listen.
7. My Savior. Some people don’t understand why I talk about the Lord so much. It is because of the joy that comes from serving Him. It really is hard to explain. You don’t understand it until you’ve experienced it.
8. My job. I know I commute and it is not ideal, but I do have a job. I spent months this summer looking for a job and it really helps one to appreciate employment.
9. A place to live and food to eat.
10. Freedom. Though our country has it’s faults, it’s still a pretty great place to live. I am thankful for the freedoms I have.
If you are struggling with finding reason to give thanks or simply want more information on having an attitude of gratitude, check out this message from Pastor Steven Furtick of Elevation Church.
What are you thankful for?
“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
image sraburton from sxc.hu
September 16, 2011
Earlier I posted a story I wrote about Chris. Today is his birthday so I thought I would also share a poem I wrote for his parents.
Just a young boy
Small among your kind
With a mischievous grin
And a love for mankind
Longing for adventure
With an internal drive to succeed
If you set your mind to something
Nothing could stop your need
Always playing sports
You had such energy and talent
Not wanting to attract a crowd
The heart of a daring gallant
The baby of the family
We had that and more unspoken
We were of the same age
Our moms’ friendship was a lasting token
A brave young man now
Filled with courage and drive
You joined the Navy
The most elite, their pride
You served quietly and secretly
We did not ask questions
Your parents could not boast of you
And the Navy’s dangerous missions
I cannot imagine the life you lived
Or the menace you incurred
To set the oppressed ones free
And a safer world for the innocent unheard
It’s time to say goodbye
My mind can’t believe that it is true
You left a courageous hero
Our lives were all changed by you
My heart aches for your family and friends
And especially your daughter
May God’s comfort for us transcend
Despite the pain and sorrow
~Karen Buckhalter Weideman
September 16, 2011
In Honor of Chris Campbell
Today’s post has nothing to do with being thrifty but I want to honor an old friend on his birthday. He would have been 37 years old. He was one of the Navy Seals that was recently killed in Afghanistan. My mom and I visited with his mom today and she was happy to read childhood memories I had of him.
August 7, 2011
I sat quietly in an airport crying tears of grief for my friend. Normally I might cower away from showing such a public display of expression. This time it was warranted. Truthfully, it seemed an honor to grieve on his behalf. He had given the ultimate sacrifice and I could not ashamed of my splotchy red face and eyes.
I was returning home from a convention which was filled with business related events and interactions with others. Although I knew of his death the previous day, my mind finally had time to rest and it was soon flooded with thoughts and forgotten memories.
We were kids running together through the yard. Our parents were talking and visiting. We raced to pass time until it was time for him to go. It was a hot summer evening and I pulled off my shoes to run. “I can run faster without shoes” I told him and we raced. The grass touched my bare feet as we ran to the tree across my yard. “One more time” we would say as we tried to be the next winner of the race.
We climbed a pile of gravel in my driveway. My dad had some gravel delivered so that he could repair and fill the holes that had formed. I think my mom fussed at us for climbing up the gravel. Like me she was protective of her children and wanted to keep them from danger.
We traveled together to Hammock’s Beach, Bear Island. His mom drove her station wagon with all of us in it. I rode in the front seat in the middle. The air conditioner blew my hair and my head ached from the cold. His brother, my brother, and he were close to the same age. They had common interests and played well together. Whenever we would go to the beach he would always make a trip to the snack bar. His mom laughed and said that as long as he had money in his pocket he was going to eat. Whenever we went to the beach the boys would play in the water and get pushed around by the waves. The girls would walk the beach, talk, and look for shells.
When my friend came to visit me from Florida she thought he was cute. We invited him and his friend over for dinner. My friend and I cooked dinner for them. We served sparkling water in our attempt to act older and mature. He and I looked at one another and exchanged frequent smiles as old friends would. On our way to take them home we heard a kitten meowing in a ditch and we rescued my kitten from my crazy dog’s kidnapping attempts.
He was sitting beside me. We were teenagers and as many teens do we sat on the back row during church services. We would exchange small chit chat before service started. We showed our prom pictures to one another. He gave me a picture and I put it into my senior album which contained photos of friends. We simply talked about things that are important to everyone of that age.
He was only one day older than me. That was another thing we had in common. We always knew when the other person had a birthday. Our moms were best friends and they both worked in the schools. Our moms had summers free to spend with us and take us places so we spent a lot of time together.
I can visualize the pictures from birthday parties and other events over the years. He was small for his age but always full of energy and life. He was known for being active in any kind of sport.
My heart swelled with pain and tightness as I thought of his parents. I could not imagine the grief that they felt. To lose a child is a parent’s worst nightmare. It was easy to recall all of the times I had prayed for my children and for God to keep them safe from harm. I could only pretend to know the pain they were experiencing. I wept again, but this time it was for dear friends.
My mind returned to the phone conversations I had over the weekend with my dad. I was comforted knowing there were church friends and family to visit them during such a difficult time.
Whenever the military were recognized during church services his dad always wore his uniform. How proud of his son he must have been. What an accomplishment it was for their son to be a part an elite group of Navy Seals. When a child does something great such as making the dean’s list parents want to tell everyone. His parents probably didn’t have that privilege. Their son was performing secret missions that no one would ever know.
His mom served the military lunch after church that Sunday. What a servant’s heart she must have to give of herself only a day later. Everyone would understand if she stayed at home that day. Maybe it was her way of showing respect and honor to her son. As the wife of a retired Marine she understood their lives. She knew the sacrifice required of the entire family.
A navy seal – I tried to envision what that must be like. What kind of training must he have endured to become one? How does someone even begin to be chosen?
Regret fills my heart. How did we drift apart and not keep in touch? I struggle to remember the last time I saw him but then my mind is filled with wonderful memories. It seems as though I haven’t seen him in forever and then it seems like it was just a few weeks ago.
He will forever be missed. Lives are changed because of him.
May God be with his family, his friends, and his daughter. May they be filled with the peace and comfort that only He can bring. We praise God for our friend and the sacrifice he gave.
~Karen Buckhalter Weideman
“Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” John 15:13
September 16, 1974 – August 6, 2011
August 9, 2011
For the second year, I am a member of the Bumble Bee Foods Bee Squad. Bumble Bee Foods sent their Bee Squad bloggers to Blogher again this year. The conference was in San Diego, CA and never before had I been to California or anywhere even near it. Bumble Bee was excited that the conference was in their neck of the woods and they took us to some of their favorite places.
After we arrived in San Diego on Thursday Bumble Bee hosted a private party at Mr. A’s Restaurant. The party was outside on the patio overlooking the city. The view was absolutely beautiful. We were fortunate to begin the party while it was still daylight and stay until dark.
Hardly any of us sat down during the party. The view was just too gorgeous to ignore. We all stood around and continued to look out. We saw several planes land while we were there which was a bit scary. It looked like the planes were going to crash into a building or land in the water.
One of the highlights of Blogher is seeing blogging friends. I met Elizabeth from Table 4 Five back in 2008 at the first Pampers Mommy Blogger event. We sat up on the very tall bench at Pampers and I sang “I’m a big kid look what I can do . . .”. She declared me cute and we have been friends since.
Chef Scott Leibfried continues to be the chef for Bumble Bee Foods. Last year during the Blogher party Chef Scott made some quick and yummy foods using Bumble Bee products. This year he hung out with us and talked. He is very nice and easy to talk to. Chef Scott is known for his appearances on Hell’s Kitchen, the Food Network Challenge, and Kitchen Nightmares.
I was also thrilled to meet up with Lori again from The Bargain Shopper Lady. We got to spend lots of time together this year and she is definitely a kindred spirit. You can see a picture of the two of us and the entire Bee Squad at her site.
As you can see, the city is beautiful during the day and night. It is also very obvious that I am in need of a new camera.
I hope you enjoyed the pictures. I’ll try to post more from Blogher later this week.
Disclaimer: I am a member of the Bumble Bee Foods Bee Squad. The opinions are my own.
May 3, 2011
This picture was taken a few days ago. Shown here are tomato and squash plants. In the last few days the jalapenos have started to sprout. I also planted a few more things including more tomatoes and squash as well as kale, asparagus, and bell peppers.
I know we’re a little late on getting our garden started. We had started some seeds about a month ago and someone accidentally killed the plants. Now we are starting over. I hope we have been success this time.
Have you started a garden?
April 2, 2011
Acts of kindness should be from the heart and without a scale of checks and balances. Expecting something in return holds the other person in bondage and robs you of a blessing.
March 2, 2011
It just dawned on me that today is Wordless Wednesday. It is almost impossible for me to post pictures without some sort of blurb about them. Today’s pictures are kind of interesting.
I’ve been wanting my mom’s old coupon box for a while. I meant to get it from her last summer and forgot so while I was visiting in January I made sure to get it.
I opened up the box expecting to find a bunch of expired coupons. I was quite surprised when I found these old coupons.
None of these coupons are expired. They all have “no expiration date” on them. I’m thinking of taking some of these to use at Harris Teeter and seeing what happens. I can only imagine the looks I’ll get. I know some of these products are no longer being manufactured.
As of now I can’t really decide what I’m going to do with all of the coupons but I thought you all might like to see them.
What do you think I should do with the coupons?
February 27, 2011
You may think I have disappeared. In a way I kind of have. After staying at home or working part-time for 7 years I went back to work full-time in April 2010. In January 2011 I was able to get a better paid teaching position with benefits (yay for benefits!) and I am also commuting to work each day.
I am busy.
While I still love to find a good deal, I don’t have much time to post about all of the deals that I find.
I am beginning to adjust to the routine and my new classroom and I hope that you’ll see more of me in the future.
January 31, 2011
You may be wondering what posts Thrifty Mommy readers enjoyed or you may have missed out on some helpful money saving advice. The most read posts this month were:
Please remember that some of the sale and coupon information may no longer be valid.
Which articles did you enjoy?