Thursday, March 29, 2012

Money Saving Mom Audio Book Review

When my husband and I decided that I was going to be a stay at home mom, we had no idea how we were going to make it financially.  We just knew that it was best for our sweet little baby boy.  After the birth of my second son and the purchase of our first house, I was desperate to find a way to save money.  I remember seeing a "friend" on Facebook "like" a page called Money Saving Mom.  The name caught my attention, so I decided to check it out.  Boy, was I glad that I did!  I was immediately hooked to Crystal Paine's blog, Money Saving Mom.  Her blog is much more than another "deal" blog.  In fact, her blog is one of the few blogs that I check daily to see what I might be missing.  You can imagine my excitement when I found out that I was given the opportunity to review her latest audio book, A Money Saving Mom's Budget.  

This was actually my first audio book, and I must say that I loved the convenience of  it! I can't remember the last time I was able to read a hard copy of a book.  Maybe five years ago before my first child?  No really.  The audio book was great because I was able to download it to my Ipod.  As a busy mother, this was awesome.  I was able to cook, clean, do the laundry, and even take a walk while listening to the book.  I think I may be addicted to audio books from now on.

Aside from the convenience, the book itself was fantastic!   I am not a natural when it comes to saving money.  In fact when I was first married, I had several credit cards that I was paying off because I mismanaged my money as a college student.  This book would have made a great wedding present for us! I love the way that Crystal presents the information.  She does it in a very encouraging, You Can Do It, kind of way.  She gives pratical tips to get your finances in order and gives you steps on how to get started.   Surprisely, it isn't all about money. One of my favorite chapters was actually about decluttering your life and household! One particular thing that hit me especially hard was about being content.  I think this is where I struggle most.  I would encourage you to check out her book or her blog.  I hope you are encouraged like I was and continue to be! 

Check out other reviews at the audio book blog tour!  

Disclosure:  Although I was given a free copy of the audio book, my thoughts and opinions are my own. 

About the Book 

Crystal Paine, who has helped busy women everywhere take control of their finances, presents her most effective strategies designed for families of all sizes and income levels

With hundreds of inspiring “why didn’t I think of that?” TIPS, plus WORKSHEETS, Paine breaks down your goals into easy, manageable steps so you can:

• Achieve a complete financial makeover

• Set up a realistic budget

• Never pay retail

• Slash your grocery bill

• Organize your time & your home

• Use coupons wisely

• Pay with cash only

• Live simply

• Become debt free

• Choose contentment

• Make every dollar count

A little bit about Crystal: 

Crystal Paine is a wife and homeschooling mom to three young children who has been writing on topics related to frugality for the last five years—and living a frugal, simple, and debt-free life since she was born. Her blog,, is one of the top personal finance blogs on the web averaging over four million pageviews per month. Crystal has contributed to articles in Woman's Day magazine and All You magazine, as well as being mentioned on National Public Radio and, in USA Weekend, and Real Simple magazine and numerous other local newspapers and radio and television stations.

Buy the book here!

Celebrate with Crystal by entering her iPad2 Giveaway (a GREAT tool to keep track of your budget!) and RSVPing to the Live Webcast Event on 4/5!
One savvy winner will receive:
  • A Brand new iPad2
  • The Money Saving Mom's Budget by Cyrstal Paine, audio edition

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends 4/4/12. Winner will be announced at The Money Saving Mom's Live Webcast Event on 4/5. Crystal will be hosting an evening of chat, laughter and encouragement - bring your friends! She'll share tips and advicde and her husband will be joining her to share how the prinicples Crystal outlines in her book have dramatically impacted their family life. She'll also be giving away some GREAT prizes: gift certificates, books, and much more!

So grab your copy of The Money Saving Mom®'s Budget and join Crystal and friends on the evening of April 5th for an evening of fun of learning, sharing and encouragement.

Don't miss a moment of the fun. RSVP TODAY and tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 5th!

Want more info about the MSM?

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Potty Training Success?

Well, it's been almost three weeks since Little Bro gave up the diapers.  In retrospect, it really hasn't been too bad.  This past weekend was a great one.  My sweet little guy finally went #2 in the potty!  He was so excited, as was I, and we celebrated with an ice cream cone. 

Really, I am really happy with his progress.  He basically has #1 down and is holding it and remembering to go on his own.  However, sometimes he will be stubborn or too into playing and won't make it to the potty.  When we got home from running errands today, he jumped out of the van and immediately ran outside to play and refused to go potty which resulted in an accident.  He didn't want me to see, so he quickly went up to the bathroom and took off his pants and underwear.  I came upstairs to see what the deal was and he was "hiding" in his toy box.  I asked him why he didn't have his underwear on and he wouldn't look me in the eye.  By this time I had already started dinner, so instead of busting his chops, I decided to let it go.  However, when I went upstairs a second time to check on him because he was being too quiet, this is what I found... 

I think this is God's way of telling me to stop pushing him.  He is just a sweet innocent young boy.  He'll get it...sometime.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Whatcha Eatin'?: Monday, March 26th

Last week I took a break from menu planning and tried to wing it.  I found that I was way more stressed and crabby last week.  Hoping that this week is much better!  Here is what we are eatin' this week:  

Sunday:   Stirfry, Rice, Cottage Cheese

Monday:  Sour Cream Ritz Chicken, Roasted Potatoes, Green Beans

Tuesday:  Lasagna Casserole, Salad, Garlic Bread

Wednesday: Salisbury Steak, Mashed Potatoes, Corn, Dinner Rolls

Thursday:  Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken Sandwiches, Chips, Veggies & Dip

Friday: Cheeseburgers, Cheesy Potatoes, Baked Beans, Cottage Cheese

Saturday:  BBQ Chicken Homemade Pizza (using leftovers from Thursday) 

What are you eatin' this week?  Link up with me at Organizing Junkie's blog and get inspired.  

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Wednesday Weigh In

Well...the scale hasn't move...but at least I have!  I finally got started with my C25K workout plan.  Today I completed the Week 1, Workout 2.  This consists of a 5 minute warmup, and then you run for 1 min and then walk for 1 1/2 minutes.  You repeat this 20 times and then do a 5 minute cool down.  I am really liking the program because it isn't so overwhelming on my body and mind.  Also, I stopped drinking Mt. Dew on Monday.  I have replaced my three Mt. Dews a day with 1 Diet Pepsi.  I am hoping to get rid of soda soon!  How are you doing on your weightloss?  Let's keep each other accountable! 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

A Family Favorite: Meatloaf & Party Potatoes

I had told you last week that I would share this recipe.  I thought I'd better keep my word.  Party Potatoes have become a tradition to serve in church meals.  I remember when I was a girl being super excited to eat a meal at church after a baptism because I knew they would serve Party Potatoes.  Yeah, I know...a bit sad.  I think this is where my addiction to potatoes comes from.  They are quite tasty and super easy to make.  I like to pair it with Meatloaf, but it also would go great with ham for Easter.  I hope you enjoy these as much as I do.

Party Potatoes
  • Instant Potatoes for 24 Servings (water, milk, & butter to make them)
  • 2- 8 oz. package of Cream Cheese
  • 2- 8 oz. container of French Onion Dip 
  • Garlic Salt to Taste 
Make potatoes according to package, but omitting 1/2 cup of the liquid.   Mix in cream cheese and French Onion Dip.  Add Garlic Salt to your liking.  Bake in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes to bring the flavors out. Enjoy! 

Note: I sometimes sprinkle a little shredded cheddar cheese on top.  

  • 1 1/2 lb of hamburger (uncooked)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2/3 cup of milk
  • 1 1/2 tsp. of salt 
  • 1/2 tsp. of pepper
  • 1 med. onion, quartered (I omit this because onions give my hubby indigestion)
  • 1 carrot, chopped 
  • 3 slices of bread

Combine all ingredients in blender except hamburger.  Then, pour mixture in a bowl and mix with hamburger. Shape into a loaf and place it in a greased loaf pan.  Note:  We like to combine a little ketchup and brown sugar for the top of the meatloaf. It adds a great flavor.  Then, Bake for 1 hour in a 350 degree oven.  Enjoy!

Monday, March 19, 2012

A Cookout in March?

I am loving this summer like weather!  It is absolutely crazy.  I keep waiting for it to all end with a big snow storm.  Sunday night we decided to enjoy this beautiful weather by grilling burgers and eating on the deck.  Our kids loved it.  Such a simple joy!

This boy can pound some cheeseburgers!  

Don't you love the dirt around his mouth?  We did make him wash his hands before eating!  

I can't get enough of this smile!  She loves the outdoors! 

Friday, March 16, 2012

Slow Down, Baby Girl!

Slow down, Baby're growing up too fast!!!  My sweet little baby is nine months now and doing things at a way faster pace than her brothers.  This makes me sad.  My hubby and I have decided to not intentionally add more children to our family.  This means my sweet little baby girl may just be my last baby.  Sniff...

She is already playing by herself.  

She's pulling up to stand by herself.  

She's feeding herself. 

Heck, she can even change the channels...all by herself.  
Where does the time go? 

Frumps to Pumps; Free eBook!