Thursday, July 30, 2009

It was all free!

Today only, my Kroger store had all Kellogg’s items on sale at 50% off.  In the Red Plum insert I also received $80 of coupons for Kellogg’s products, most of them for $1 off when you buy 2.  Additionally, there is a “Fuel for School” rebate of $10 when you buy 10 Kelloggs products.  I bought 10 products at half off and my subtotal was $15.  I used 5 $1 off coupons making my total $10, and I can submit it for a $10 rebate.  IT WAS ALL FREE!!!



Sorry the picture isn’t the greatest.  I got four Special K cereals, 2 Eggo waffles, 2 Pop Tarts, and 2 Rice Krispy Treats.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Canning Day 2

PICT0035Canning Day 1 actually turned into the only canning day.  I decided to go ahead and do up the peach jam while I had all of the pans and supplies out.  It made for what felt like a really long day on my feet.  When the last jars of jam were removed from the canner, and the dishes were washed, I jumped into a nice warm bath to soak my feet.  They were so tired!


We ended up with 11 half pints of less sugar blueberry jam, 4 pints of regular peach jam, and 3 pints of less sugar peach jam.  We also had enough blueberries to freeze for three pies and two batches of pancakes.  Ben should be happy for a while! 


I was blessed to be taken out to dinner, spur of the moment, last night.  Ben came home and saw everything I had done and took me to the salad bar at Ruby Tuesday.  I have been craving salad and crushed ice recently!  Then we got a free ice cream at cold stone with his birthday

coupon.  What a day!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Canning Day 1

Ben got off early on Friday, so we headed down to Knott’s Island, NC (about an hour away) to pick peaches at the local orchard.  They were supposed to be ready this week, and I wanted to make a batch of peach jam.  When we arrived around 1pm we were told that a lot of pickers came in the morning, and they were out of peaches!  They had a couple of 10 pound bags already picked that we could purchase.  We bought one, though I am not too thrilled with the quality of the peaches.  Hopefully it will make some good jam.


Having struck out in the peach department, we stopped by the blueberry patch on the way home and hit the jackpot.  They were on sale for $1.76 per pound for pick your own blueberries, and they were ripe & sweet.  We spend about an hour picking and ended up with almost two buckets – I think it’s around 10 pounds.  Ben’s favorite is blueberry pie, blueberry pancakes, and I want to try some jam. 


I spent the morning picking out the stems and doing a batch of jam.  I ended up with eleven 1/2 pint jars of blueberry jam.  The little dab of leftover jam is very tasty!  I’ve never had blueberry jam before that I can recall.  I only used half of the berries, so this afternoon I am going to freeze the other half for pies, cereal, and pancakes. 


Here are my pictures…


Cooking the fruit into jam…



Processing the jam…



The finished product.  Within five minutes all of the jars had “popped” to let me know they are sealed.  Now we just have to see if it all sets up properly…

Happy 24th Birthday Ben

Well, this is a little late…but we did celebrate Ben’s birthday on time.  Actually he kind of got a whole week of celebration.  A while back I read about several birthday clubs to sign up for at restaurants.  On your birthday they send you a coupon by email.  So, I entered Ben and me.  The coupons started arriving a week before his birthday, and they didn’t expire until a week after his birthday…which meant we didn’t have to pig out all in one day!  He enjoyed a free Schlotzsky’s deli sandwich one day for lunch.  On Tuesday night we enjoyed a free burger entree at Red Robin.  On Wednesday (his birthday) we had a buy one, get one coupon for Qdoba Mexican grill.  We still have a free Cold Stone and a free shake at Fuddruckers to use. 


Since Ben’s birthday was on a Wednesday, it was hard to do very much celebrating.  Usually he runs in the door, grabs a quick shower, we scarf dinner, and we’re out the door to church.  So we enjoyed cake and ice cream after the service, and then had the “birthday dinner” on Thursday night.  Ben requested Pork with Fennel – his new favorite meal. 


I had set aside my check from working the Democratic Primary election for Governor here in Virginia.  Since we now have a patio, Ben was going to pick out a gas grill.  However, when we signed our lease, we discovered that only charcoal grills are allowed.  We were able to pick up a used little “Smoky Joe” grill off Craig’s List.  Ben chose to use some of the money to go to the minor league baseball game on Saturday night, and we have a camping reservation for August 14th.  Mom & Dad Hamilton are paying for Ben to get his teeth cleaned (since we don’t have dental insurance we haven’t been for a while), and Grandma & Grandpa Paul sent a new dress shirt & tie.  My parents sent Glenn Beck’s book Common Sense along with some new socks, and Ben gets to keep the sanders that my dad loaned him to build the crib.  Basically…Ben made off like a bandit!


Here are a couple of pictures.  Happy 24th Birthday Ben!


Ben's 24th Birthday

It’s a Hamilton thing…all they ever want is chocolate cake with chocolate icing.  Since I don’t like chocolate cake, Ben gets the whole thing to himself!!!


Ben's 24th Birthday


Ben's 24th Birthday

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Diaper Giveaway Alert!

yellow diapI just found a great new blog called Baby Good Buys.  To make this find even sweeter, they are giving away two Fuzzi Bunz diapers to one lucky winner.  These are the cloth diaper that I have chosen to use with our baby, in addition to traditional pre-fold diapers.  There is a great review and some more information about Fuzzi Bunz if you would like to check out her site, and enter to win yourself if you have babies at home!


perfect size

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Stand Up Against Obamacare!

I realize that my blog does not reach very many people – just a handful of family and friends.  However, I felt I needed to write a post on the actions you can take to stand up against Obamacare, the proposed government take-over of the healthcare industry.  In this matter, Congress and the current Administration have gone too far.  I attended my local Tea Party against taxes on April 15th.  As a result, I get emails from TeaPartyPatriots.orgThey have made several suggestions regarding actions we can take to let our voice be heard against nationalized healthcare. 


I feel that if you aren’t going to take the steps necessary to stand up, to let your voice be heard, and to do what you can do, then you have no rights to complain about what happens.  We can make phone calls, send letters/emails, and let our elected officials know what we want in this matter.  They may listen, and they may not, but they can’t listen unless we are talking.


Here are some steps you can take to stand up against Obamacare this week, starting today!


1.  Tuesday:  Call the House Energy and Commerce Committee members.  Tell them not to pass the government run health care bill out of committee.  Our sources tell us that all the Republicans will be voting against the legislation already so you may choose to focus on the Democrats.  Record your answers and the number of calls you made. This will help Tea Party Patriots keep track of the progress we make. 


2.  Wednesday:  Call the Blue Dog DemocratsRecord your answers and the number of calls you made. 


3.  Wednesday:  Watch the Pajamas Media Health Care Town Hall.  I’m not really sure what this is about, but I’m going to try it on Wednesday.


4.  Thursday:  Call the Senate Finance Committee tell them our economy cannot afford another massive government spending bill.  (This link may not be active now abut it will be active before Thursday.) Record your answers and the number of calls you made. 


5.  Friday:  Call your Senators and your Representative; tell them as a constituent you are asking them to vote NO on government take over of Health Care. Record your answers and the number of calls you made.


6.  Friday:  Call the Blue Dog Democrats AGAIN.  Record your answers and the number of calls you made.


Let’s also remember to pray for our country, our freedoms, and for those in leadership positions as they vote on this critical issue.


Today I made 30 phone calls to the Democratic members of the Energy & Commerce Committee.  It took me less than 30 seconds per phone call. 

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


imagesCAXHPKBLIf I cast up a confessed, repented, and forsaken sin against another, and allow  my remembrance of that sin to color my thinking and feed my suspicions, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

~Amy Carmichael, missionary to India

Monday, July 13, 2009

Tour The New Apartment!

Here is a video tour of our new home in two parts (I had camera problems). 




There were a few problems that had to be corrected first thing.  The A/C did not shut off (I’m afraid to see that power bill!), the freezer defrosted into the refrigerator, and there was no hot water in the bathtub.  There were minor issues too, which were all corrected today.  A funny thing is that the toilet is installed crooked. 


I went today for a move-out inspection on our old place.  We cleaned really well on Sunday.  The inspector barely looked around, but his comment pleased me.  He said, “This is going to be an easy turnover.  It’s really clean.  I can’t wait to be assigned to this one.” 


The move was very smooth.  On Friday I worked on moving over the clothes closet and some kitchen items while Ben was at work.  He helped me finish the dishes and the large items.  I was exhausted Friday night!  On Saturday we moved the odds & ends, then four men from church came and two of our teens.  One had a pickup, one had a full sized van, and one had a box truck.  In one load, about 45 minutes, the furniture was moved from the old place and into the new place.  Ben and I spent the afternoon unpacking all of the boxes and rearranging.  I reorganized a few things on Sunday, and we finished hanging the pictures tonight.  We’re pleased with our neighbors so far, and the apartment is great. 

Friday, July 10, 2009


I had my first “official” craving last night…according to Ben.  Most of the time when he asks me what I want I say “I don’t know” or “I can’t decide”.  Last night, as we were cleaning up the sudovepper dishes, I blurted out, “I want chocolate.”  We had just finished off the M&M’s, so there was no chocolate in the house.  Ben was so excited that I had a craving and knew what I wanted that he went out to the store to buy me chocolate.  He even used some of his birthday money!  He came back with two bags of wonderful Dove chocolate – one bag of milk chocolate and one bag of dark chocolate.  His comment was, “Cravings mean we can splurge a little.  But…can you crave something a little more exotic next time?”

Thursday, July 9, 2009

K-Mart Double Coupon Shopping Trip

K-Mart was running their Super Double Coupon promotion this week in which they double manufacturer coupons up to and including $2.00.  I had quite a few high dollar coupons which allowed me to maximize my savings.  Here is a picture:



I used 19 coupons that totaled $51.66 after being doubled.  There were only four items that I did not have a coupon for – two of them were tomato plants (not pictured).  My before coupon total was $78 and change.  I paid $25.93 for everything pictured above.  20% of that was my Downy wrinkle releaser – which I only purchased because I really need it right now!  This was a great K-Mart shopping trip! (9 items were free or only pennies).

Monday, July 6, 2009

Another Fine Weekend

It was a great weekend.  Ben was off on Friday, Saturday, and of courseam flag Sunday.  We did nothing, and yet we accomplished a lot.  We enjoyed sleeping in and relaxing.  On Friday we had our medical exam for Life Insurance, we got a new radio installed in the Camry, and we signed the lease on our new apartment.  We enjoyed staying up late watching movies because Ben did not have to leave early on Saturday for the office.


On Saturday we tied up loose ends, played a game of Monopoly, and studied Hebrew.  Well, Ben studied Hebrew.  I did a little bit of packing for the move, and we put together a review game for the Sunday School class.  We just finished a study on the life of Joseph. 


Then we went to see fireworks over the oceanFourth of July 2009.  They set off the fireworks from a boat so that they explode over the water.  We intended to catch the shopper’s shuttle, but it was ahead of schedule and we missed it.  So…we walked.  2.8 miles.  Each direction.  Ben offered to leave me and run for the car on the way back, but I decided to stick it out.  I regretted it on Sunday when every part of my body hurt!  The firework display was great – longer than many that either of us had seen.  Most of my pictures did not turn out great…I needed a tri-pod.


We had a great Sunday School class yesterday.  We played a mixture of Jeomillionairepardy, Wheel of Fortune, and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? for our review game.  The prize was a $5 Starbucks card.  (We just discovered that every one of our teens loves Starbucks, but none of them can afford it!)  Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?  was complete with lifeline options…including “Phone a Friend.”  My Mom was on notice that she might get a call – it worked out great because they are two hours behind us.  They are on their way to church when we are teaching Sunday School.  One brave teen, Melissa opted for this lifeline, not knowing who was on the other end of the phone (so Ben ended up doing the talking).  Good for Mom – she gave the right answer! 


Sunday was also exciting because Ben was able to feel the bbaby feetaby kick.  I have been having little “flutters” for a couple of weeks now, and last week they were strong enough to convince me that it was indeed the baby kicking and moving.  Last night as we watched a movie, the baby started going at it.  I was able to get Ben to feel it.  He was very excited.  He said now it felt real – there really is a baby in there!


We hope you all had a great holiday weekend. 

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Happy Birthday…


Today my “big” little brother, Kenneth Michael turns 24!  Happy Birthday Kenny!  He is away from the whole family as he just moved to Newland, NC to work at Emmanuel Baptist Church.

Late Nite Bowling


Yesterday, July 1st, was my Mother-in-Law, Sissy Hamilton’s birthday.  Happy Birthday Mom!  (I won’t tell you how old she is…)  And coming up on the 15th is Dad Hamilton’s birthday.  Happy Birthday Dad!

Hamiltons come to Virginia Beach