Monday, March 18, 2013

celebrating 25!

In my mind I kept thinking how I am officially aging as my co-worker reminded me of my age when they asked me how old I was turning.  "I'm 25" I say. Inside thinking, ..that sounds so grown up. I'm not a little girl anymore. As of two weeks ago I am now in my "mid" twenties, not early, but mid. Weird, right? At least, to me it is. The days leading up to my 25th birthday were filled a little with sadness as I thought of leaving "youthful numbers" I know, call me lame and melancholy but I guess it kind of hit me that I'm actually growing up. I've heard so many times how life goes by so much faster the older you get<--- and that is SOOO True! In the midst of my small pitty party, I am reminded of how short and temporary life is and the guarantee of tomorrow is not promised to any of us. I am thankful for my life, thankful to be able to celebrate another year of life, and to be surrounded daily with so many undeserved blessings.

So with that being said, I celebrated my birthday by going to a nice dinner at Norman's with sweet husband!


I love how they personalized the menu!




We started off with these amazing fried green tomatoes, which actually turned out to be my favorite item of the night!


I ordered the organic chicken stuffed with plantains


John ordered the pork, which was AMAZING!


And of course, cheesecake for desert!

The day of my actual birthday, I had the entire morning to myself and decided to take advantage of my day by going around town and hitting up all the freebies in Orlando, just because it was my birthday! It was quite the adventure!

My first stop was to CVS where I bought a bottle of fun blue nail polish with the $3 giftcard CVS emailed me!


Next, was a birthday breakfast at Panera for a complimentary pastry of my choice!


Apple Crisp Muffin!

Then, off to Firehouse for a free sub!

n ,.

Then, ending the day with free Fro Yo from Menchie's!


And somewhere in between all of that I managed to hit up some of my favorite stores for some birthday clothes!

,m ,mn

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Today I went to CVS and saved a TON of money!


I've had an off and on relationship with couponing over the past 2 years and as you can see, my relationship is going well today :) I've been trying to improve my "Wifely" contributions a little more lately and one of the areas I'm focusing on is saving money. John and I have always been great savers but I want to improve in the areas that I'm in charge of like the grocery and necessity shopping. This is probably the one area that I don't really pay much attention to the price when I'm shopping for those items.

I realized this past week that my vitamin and probiotics bottles were getting a little low so I knew I needed to purchase more. John and I are trying to save money for our our big move coming up soon (more on that to come) and I didn't really feel comfortable dishing out a wad of money ---> everyone knows that vitamins and probiotics are not cheap! So what better way to save money than by doing a little research and couponing before I set out to purchase them!?


Here is what I did!

I went to my favorite drug store, a.k.a.=CVS

I had to pick up some toothpaste and had a coupon CVS gave me a couple of days ago for $3 off a $10 toothpaste purchase. I noticed there was sale for Colgate toothpaste if you spend $10 you get $5 ECB back, so I spent $10 on toothpaste and used my coupon and got $5 ECB, so out of pocket I paid $7.78.

They had all of the CVS brand vitamins on sale for B1G1, and the probiotics (NatureMade) were B1G1 free too! I also had one manufactures coupon and 3 CVS coupons that used, (including the $5 ECB I got back from the toothpaste in the first transaction.) This is the break down:

CVS brand B6 vitamins- $9.99

CVS brand  B12 vitamins- $9.99

CVS brand Magnesium vitamins- $4.99

CVS brand Vitamin C- $4.99

Naturemade probiotics $17.49

Naturemade probiotics $17.49


Total= $64.94 (before tax)

I paid= $19.72 :)


This makes me happy considering a month ago I bought a box of Target brand probiotics for around $20!


Monday, March 4, 2013

What House Hunters doesn't show you


Over the past month John and I have been searching for a home to buy. Let me tell you this, it's not easy. AT ALL. Almost every home we looked at or decided we wanted to put an offer on someone beat us to it. There was even one day where we saw 2 homes that came on the market and later that day our realtor told us they had offers already and we couldn't see them anymore. How crazy is that? I've been learning that house hunting isn't exactly as easy and pretty as House Hunters has lead me to believe! :) I'm literally on an emotional at roller coaster.

Here are a couple helpful tips for house hunting:

1. Constantly check online for new homes that become listed. We really loved sites like Zillow, Trulia, and Estately. They allow you to search in specific areas and you can sort by price, days the home as been on the market, sq ft, and etc.

2. If you see a home you like, see it that day and act fast. The market is viscous. Chances are if you like the home, someone else does too and they are not going to wait for you to make the first move. If you really love the house, place an offer and take your competition out of the picture.

3. Try not to get too emotionally attached. This is one of the hardest things because you do have to somewhat invision yourself in the home but if you don't get that specific home you were hoping for just remind yourself that it wasn't meant to be and know that the right home will turn up eventually and just be patient.

4. Get a realtor! Even though there are many online websites that can show you what homes are listed for sale, that doesn't mean that your realtor might not know someone that is about to list their home that might not show up online. They are there to work for you and help you find the perfect home you are looking for.

5. Be Patient! This is the hardest part. With house hunting you most likely are not going to buy the first home you see or probably even the second or third. In fact, you may be searching for months until you find the perfect one. Home buying comes with lots of paperwork, meetings with various people, negotiations, traveling to and from homes, time consumption, inspections, etc. I like to call it "hoops." Try and jump through each hoop one at a time. If you try and jump through all of them at once you are most likely going to stumble and fall and cry :) save yourself the scraped knees and tissues and breathe. You're buying a house, it's ok to be stressed and it's ok to be excited. Enjoy the ride!


Sunday, March 3, 2013

On your porch

I can't believe it's been nearly 6 years since I was first introduced to The Format. The song "On your Porch" brings back so many memories filled with excitement, new chapters, young love, heartbreak, and now the memory of happiness in a small town with some of the best friends I could have ever asked for. When I first heard the song, I immediately liked it because of the acoustic sound and I also had just started dating John at the time so some of the lyrics like "I turn to you and I let you know that I love you" reminds me of when I was away at school and John told me he loved me. :)
John and Brad would play this song on the guitar in their living room in Carbondale while I soaked up every single guitar strum. At the time, I liked to call it my own "private concerts." I honestly can't help but smile inside when I think of all of the memories I have associated with this song.


On Your Porch- The Format

I was on your porch, the smoke sank into my skin.
So I came inside to be with you.
And we talked all night,
about everything we could imagine.

'Cause come the morning I'll be gone
and as our eyes start to close
I turn to you and I let you know that I love you

Well, my dad was sick,
and my mom, she cared for him.
Her love, it nursed him back to life.
And me, I ran. I couldn't even look at him
for fear I'd have to say goodbye.

And as I start to leave
he grabs me by the shoulder and he tells me:
"What's left to lose? You've done enough.
And if you fail, well then you fail but not to us.
'Cause these last three years, I know they've been hard.
But now it's time to get out of the desert and into the sun;
even if it's alone."

So now here I sit, in a hotel off of Sunset;
my thoughts bounce off of Sam's guitar.
And that's the way it's been,
ever since we were kids but now,
now we've got something to prove.
And I, I can see their eyes,
but tell me something, can they see mine?

'Cause what's left to lose?
I've done enough.
And if I fail, well then I fail, but I gave it a shot.
And these last three years, I know they've been hard.
But now it's time to get out of the desert and into the sun;
even if it's alone.

Even if it's alone
Even if it's alone
Even if it's alone

I was on your porch last night, the smoke, it sank into my skin.