Monday, December 20, 2010

Gorgeous California Sunset

Last weekend, the sky displayed its holiday finery in pinks and oranges and peaches. 

Gorgeous. Breathtaking, even.

This weekend, though, the clouds chose to share their seasonal offerings.

Rain, rain, rain. 

Good thing I love rain!

Orgasm Cookies

The name "Brown Sugar Shortbread" just doesn't do these cookies justice. It really doesn't.

So from here on out (in my mind, at least) they'll be known as "Orgasm Cookies". 

They. Are. That. Good. They not only melt in your mouth, but the flavor literally curls your toes.

The impossibly fast and easy recipe is from Mrs. Field's Cookie Book.

1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour

6 oz. chocolate chips
1 tbsp. butter
4 oz. finely chopped pecans

Cream butter and sugar, then add vanilla and sugar. Once dough forms, roll into 1 inch balls, then roll each ball into a 2 inch log and place on cookie sheet. Depress middle of each log with the length of your forefinger. Bake at 325 for 17-19 minutes or until light golden.

Remove to cooking rack. Melt chocolate chips and butter together. Either dip the tips of the cookies in the chocolate or spread the chocolate on the cookies with a knife, then cover with pecans. Refrigerate to set chocolate.

I'm sure you have the ingredients on hand, so go make them. Right now. 

Trust me. 

You want them.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

NEEDTOBREATHE - Something Beautiful [Official Video]

Hit the concert scene for the first time in years! Saw NeedToBreathe. Way cool.

Scott bought tickets for the four of us to see one of his favorite bands -- Need to Breathe -- play at the House of Blues last night. A rockin' good time, I tell ya!

I'd forgotten how much fun concerts are, especially when I'm wearing much-needed ear plugs. LOL

The House of Blues is a really small venue, thank goodness, and it's standing room only. That's just fine for adults, but for the 10 year-olds in attendance (okay, for the one 10 year-old in attendance), no seating adds to the over-stimulation of the concert. 
But... having never been to a rock concert before, Emma did awesome! She didn't like waiting and waiting and waiting for the band to come out or the interminable jam sessions to end or the four encores to just stop already. But she was a trooper, thanks to a pushy mother (Haha! How often am I ever pushy?? LOL) and several women who kindly accommodated a 51" tall child. They noticed she couldn't see too well and gave her space to hang right up in front of the stage.

Nothing like enjoying a concert in the spit and sweat splash zone, right?
Scott and Hayley hung towards the back since they're both tall enough to see clearly. I totally wish I could have watched Hayley (the oh-so-reserved teenage) enjoy the concert. I'm sure she didn't rock out or anything, but I hope she at least got into the groove and danced a little. (This isn't her first concert, by the way. Scott took her along with the youth group at our Vancouver church to see a huge Christian concert at a huge arena in Portland (the Rose Garden). I think there were something like 10 bands playing.)

I also missed hanging with my hubby. He's been trying to get me to a concert for years and I finally agree to go to one and we don't even get to stand together. *sigh* 

We could have used a tow truck to drag the four of us out of our comfy beds this morning. We were home and in bed by midnight, which is when Scott and I usually go to bed, but I think the concert noise drained our collective energy.

I am just so thankful both girls had a good day today. I figured Hayley would be fine after the late night, but Emma? I wasn't so sure. Aside from big purple bags under her eyes, though, she had a great day. And she was thrilled to tell all her friends about her first "grown-up" concert. Heehee!

Definitely take a look at the "Something Beautiful" video from Need to Breathe that I posted separately. If you ever listen to KLove or one of the other Christian radio stations, you definitely have heard them... (Don't worry, it's not hard rock or anything and the video was created by the band from clips their fans sent in. How cool is that?)

Check out the yummy and adorable dinner Emma made!

I just love the little stars she added, don't you?

Super yummy, super easy and (if your child isn't being creative and inventive when cooking it) fairly speedy...

Here's the recipe...

Taco Puffs

1 roll refrigerated biscuits
1 lb. ground beef
1 packet taco seasoning
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Prepare the beef according to the taco seasoning's directions.

Coat a cupcake tin with cooking spray, then push one biscuit into each section. Make a well in each biscuit by pressing down the center. Fill the well with taco meat, then top with cheese. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes.

If you want to add the cute decoration on top, keep out one biscuit and use a cookie cutter to obtain a shape. Just pop that shape on top of the cheese and bake away!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Books, books, blessed books!

A Borders in town (way, way across town) is closing, so their entire store is 40-60% off. Wow.

Wowwee wow wow.

Despite the fact that the shelves were picked over and many books had been transferred to other stores, I ended up at the cash wrap with 13 books.

And 12 bows (the kind for gifts).

For $35.

Yup. $35! How coolio is that????

Now, of course, all I want to do is curl up and read, read, read. But it being the holiday season and all, my busy-ness quotient has expounded ten-fold.

Another week, though, and Christmas vacation will be here... a break from lessons and recitals, practices and volunteering, shopping and wrapping, running and running and running.

My wonderful parents will be here and we'll sit in front of the fire (should it *not* be 90 flipping degrees outside), enjoy the smell of the Christmas tree, savor (or scarf) the yummy cookies and read.

Make that "Read" with a capital "R".

And maybe, just maybe, by New Year's Eve, I'll have achieved the elusive goal of reading 75 books in a year. (I'm at 68 right now. I think. I keep losing track.) ;)

Friday, December 10, 2010

Girl Scouts are so much fun. Loud, but fun.

I hosted a spur-of-the-moment Girl Scout meeting at my house tonight to plan a last minute holiday service project. Funny how an hour and a half meeting can stretch and stretch and stretch while the DADS chatter away like magpies long after all the moms have left to sensibly put their children to bed.

But this sensible mom could not tuck in her children because they were running rampant with the remaining Scouts. The loudest Scouts in the troop, I might add.

Oh how I wish they had a mute button.

I'm nonetheless glad to have had the meeting. The girls are working through the Journey program and in the last part of the program involves a service project.

Emma came up with a fantastic idea a couple days ago and since it's holiday-related, we had to rally the troops to put the project together asap.

The girls are creating bookmarks listing pertinent holiday recycling information. People generally want to recycle as much as possible, but forget (or don't know) their local recycling plant's guidelines. My five Girl Scouts are out to remind/educate the public on what common holiday items can and cannot be recycled.

I'm so proud of them for working through their differences of opinions and wanting to really help the community. They're a great group of girls, they are. Loud, but great. LOL

I'll post a photo later this weekend of the bookmarks they create so all you Delicious Readers can print out and share with your friends and family this holiday season!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Happy Friday! Time to make some new friends!

It's Fun Follow Friday!

So what does everyone have planned for the weekend?

There are so many great holiday activities around San Diego--I just can't wait to get out there and enjoy. I will not, however, be enjoying the 90 degree weather! Can you even believe 90 degrees in mid-December?? Where's my snow? Waaahhhh!!!

Annnnnywaaaay... We plan to head up to the corner tree lot and pick out the perfect tree. Then we're gonna come back to this new house we live in and attempt to find a place to put it.

I'm looking forward to perusing through a cute town about 20 miles away that's set up in Victorian Christmas fashion. Just my style and I can't wait!

Sunday will find Emma and I gift wrapping at Barnes and Noble. Our Girl Scout troop is fundraising for future activities, so hopefully people will be willing to let several 10 year olds wrap the gifts they've just purchased.  (I'll let you know how it goes. *wink*) LOL

But here's the most important thing on our agenda... we're volunteering to deliver Christmas trees to needy families. How cool is that? We'll pile two or three trees on top of the Santa Fe and play Evergreen Santa.

Hopefully I'll find my camera so I can photograph all the events and post them for your viewing pleasure.

I'm sure your weekends are just as busy, but don't forget to relax with some holiday cookies, a couple chunks of creamy fudge and some really great Christmas music. (Josh Groben's Noel is a personal favorite.)

Have fun!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Deliciously Reviewed: ecoSTORE products

Lucky me! I recently received two ecoSTORE products to try and review: Laundry Liquid and Orange Patchouli hand wash.

These are completely earth, home and body friendly products since they're all plant-based and non-toxic. In fact, the ecoSTORE's slogan is No Nasty Chemicals.

Considering Emma's uber-sensitive skin and Scott's allergy-ridden self, I kept a careful eye on both of them when they washed their hands with the Orange & Patchouli hand wash. I also watched for any clothing sensitivity alerts -- itching, rashes and discomfort -- for the three or four weeks I used the Laundry Liquid.


I honestly didn't see much of a difference in the ecoSTORE Laundry Liquid. The rash that constantly resides on Emma's chest didn't resolve, so I know it's not caused by the other laundry detergents I use. Laundry Liquid generally got out spots and stains just like other detergents and it smelled nice. I love that there are no chemicals, but since I didn't notice anything to make me saw WOW, I won't go to the extra effort of ordering online and paying for shipping. (I generally get great deals on laundry detergent at the drugstores anyway and frugality right now takes precedence over chemical-free products. Bummer, I know. I hope that someday I'll be able to pay more for earth-friendly products.)

ecoSTORE's Orange & Patchouli hand wash didn't really wow me either. It seemed a little thin compared to regular hand soap, but one squirt was perfect for a hand wash so consistency didn't really matter. Scott didn't complain that the soap dried his skin out or made his hands itch--YAY!  I can't see buying it, though, since it's regularly priced at $7.50 a bottle. If it was the only product that helped Scott then of course I would buy it. But other brands I can buy at Target are constantly coming out with sensitive-skin formulas that seem to work well for him.

Definitely check out their website. It looks like most, if not all, products are on sale right now, so if you're looking for plant-based, sensitive-skin friendly household and personal products, is the place to go!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Heehee! Super Shopping Galore!

How much do you think I spent on all these wonderful items?

Huh? Huh?

What'd ya think?

Well, let me tell you...


Yuperoos. $6 for 4 Zhu zhu pets, 4 boxes of Hershey's Pot of Gold chocolates and 2 boxes of Mini-Wheats.

So. Darned. Cool.

Here's how I did it...

CVS has Zhu zhus BOGO, plus there's a coupon for BOGO. So when all is said and done, I paid $9.99 for four annoying, mechanical hamsters that children seem to adore. Go figure.

But then... super couponer that I am , I whipped out my $4 off a $20 purchase (the register looks at the total before coupons and discounts), so my final price was $6 for all four hamsters. Yeehaa!

Then I ran over to Rite-Aid and boy howdy, was I ever excited to get there!

Those boxes of chocolates are on sale for $3.99 plus have a $2 Up Reward. There's also a $1 off coupon floating around the web, which brings the price per box down to a mere 99 cents.

But wait! There's more!

In addition to a Ginsu knife absolutely free (just kidding--had to throw that in, though, after my "wait, there's more" comment), Real Simple is hosting a $5 rebate with purchase of $15 or more.

And the Mini-Wheats? Probably my children's favorite food next to Peeps (Emma) and Jamba Juice (Hayley), are on sale 2/$3. With a $1 off the purchase of 2 coupon, that brings the price down to the cheap-o price of $1 per box.

So let me do some quick calculations...

I bought $86 worth of merchandise for only $6!!!!!


On the edge of your seat, ready to jump into the car and head to CVS and Rite-Aid to get these deals for yourself? Head on over to or Scroll through the amazing deals these awesome women have compiled and you'll find the current drugstore deals, along with coupon locations.

Have fun!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Seriously? Seriously?

This cannot be. I cannot be sick again.

Three illnesses in eight weeks. It's just not cool. Add in that random hurt wrist that bugged me for a good two weeks and we can easily come to the conclusion that the past two months have been just dang annoying.

A wicked sore throat plagued me yesterday so my amazing husband wouldn't let me out of bed today. I awoke long enough to call and cancel the day's doings (Girl Scout meeting), then slept for another four hours. Woke up for lunch and half an hour of a bad 1951 movie, then slept for yet another three hours.

All slept out now. I'm going to have to swallow a couple Nyquil in order to fall back asleep. Maybe I'll catch up on some blog posts, commenting on other blogs and who knows? Maybe I'll even work on my novel.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Congratulations to Denise Z.!

Remember that contest I was having? Whoever commented the most during the month of November would receive a set of handmade (by me!) cards. 

And the lucky winner, with 4 comments (it was a very slow comment month), is Denise from Illinois!

Thank you, Denise, for reading Delicious as Pie! I mailed out your package yesterday.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Congratulate me!

I actually *bought* Christmas cards today! Yay for me!

You're probably wondering why on earth you should congratulate me for such a trivial thing. Well, Delicious Readers, I'll tell you...

I've cut and colored, stamped and adhered my way through the past several holiday seasons--making my own Christmas cards. I love doing it, but making 100 cards takes time.

A LOT of time.

I spent a couple hours doodling with a card design I had in mind, but couldn't quite get it right. Wide awake at 3 am, I stepped into the Offi-Studi-Onus room. (That's the official nickname for our bonus room since it's Scott's office, the girls' study and my craft room all rolled up into one convenient package.) I stared at the design I'd put together and... and... and...

I don't know. I guess I just didn't feel the love. And I didn't want to spend the next two weeks buried under scraps of paper. I want to be frugal with my cards and if I could use the supplies I have on hand to make them, I'd save plenty of money, right? But I don't have enough of anything to make 100 cards, so I'd have to make a big ol' Michael's run.

In my dream world of constantly living up to June Cleaver perfection, I want to make the cards. They mean so much more when they're handmade and you know someone took all that time to make something beautiful for you. Cards picked up in a chaotic, frenzied, scary-Walmart-right-before-Christmas shopping trip simply bleed obligation, not holiday joy. At least that's why I like to make my own cards.

So actually purchasing the four boxes of Christmas cards at Target today was a huge feat for me. I'm letting myself off the hook. And those cards will be sent out with all the love and wishes for a wonderful Christmas as any card I've ever created from scratch.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

A chocolate shortage? *cough cough I can't breathe*

Just saw a segment on MSNBC about a possible chocolate shortage over the next 20 years. I think my body has gone into shock.

Factors that indicate a shortage?
  • Unrest in the Ivory Coast and a western Africa drought (where most of the world's cocoa beans are grown)
  • Lack of profitability for the farmers (They earn less than $1 a day in selling to large chocolate corporations.)
  • Higher demand for chocolate
Dark chocolate is currently enjoying its 15 minutes of fame and since dark chocolate candy requires more cocoa than milk chocolate, demand is high high high.

Since 2005, cocoa's price skyrocketed 44%. Candy has gotten more expensive, but then, so has everything else. The chocolate companies apparently understand the ups and downs of agriculture and are absorbing much of the increase in production costs.

Naturally, though, they won't want to negatively affect their profits too much, so if Africa doesn't see some rain and the Ivory Coast citizens don't push in their manners buttons, there will be less chocolate. Thus, the end cost for chocoholics like myself will be very, very  high.

Mormons often stock three years' worth of foodstuffs. I think I should take a hint from them and stock years' worth of chocolate.

Watcha think?

Friday, November 19, 2010

And the travel ends at very long last...

Scott arrived home tonight from his last week-long training. Woot! Woot! What a relief to us all that he's here again!!

Emma's begging him to read Harry Potter to her. Hayley just won't stop talking about completely random and inconsequential details of her week.

And me? I've already thanked the good Lord multiple times for Scott's return. It's been an intensely long ten days...

On Wednesday of last week, Hayley came home sick. Thursday and Friday? School holidays. Sunday Scott left. Monday and Tuesday Emma graced me with her sick presence on Monday and Tuesday. She went back to school on Wednesday, but since this is conference week, school ended before noon. Hayley stayed home sick again yesterday.

And let's not forget that, in some random way unbeknownst to me, I messed up my left wrist. The girls have had to help me do everything from scratching my back to buttoning my jeans. How sad is that? I've had no choice but to drive one-handed and occasionally, with much excruciating pain, two-handed. I can't make cards. I can't knit. I can't make my own sandwiches. I can't. Period. I just can't.

By the way, I'm becoming quite a speedy one-handed typist.

I'm sure you all agree with me: I. Need. A. Break.

Big time.

Will tomorrow be better? Yes, because my hero is home. But the insanity of life won't take a breather. Emma and I have a Girl Scout sleep-over Saturday night and the second we come home Sunday morning, we're all hoping the car for a lovely 10 hour drive to my parents' house. Saturday will be a busy, busy, busy day.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

When Super Couponing goes deliciously good. Really, really good.

Ralphs logo
I came home from Ralph's grocery store at 10pm last night on such a high.

See this?

$9.68 for it all!!!

Woot! Woot! Woot!

Ralph's is doubling coupons right now and by combining coupons with their sales, I got deal after deal after.

And this morning, I went over to CVS and paid $2 for:

2 boxes of Kellogg's Raisin Bran
1 set of AquaGlobes
2 jars of Skippy peanut butter
1 12.5 bottle of Herbal Essences

But it gets better! I received $3 in ExtraCare bucks. Result? All of that for nothing and a dollar back in profit.

Yabba dabba do!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

It's about time! Finally a music video/song with a positive message...

This is Firework by Katy Perry.

Watch and listen. In a word? Awesome.

Monday, November 15, 2010

When Super Couponing goes bad


Last week, I drove Emma up to Michael's so she could buy a birthday present for Hayley. It was a two part gift and since I had two 50% off coupons, I planned on paying for one part with one coupon. Emma would use the other coupon in her own transaction.

Halfway to the store, I realized that the coupons expired the previous day.

I was livid. Seriously, I'm fairly sure steam shot out my ears.

I knew I had current 40% coupons at home, but I didn't want to bother turning around (and driving the entire mile home again.) If the items had been at all expensive, of course I would have gone home again. But they weren't.

The higher price item was $4.99. Yup. Less than $5. So I would have saved a whopping $2.50 with that expired coupon.

So not a big deal, right?


So why then did the experience put me in a foul mood for the rest of the day? I have no idea. A savings of $2.50 would have been nice, but the lack of it isn't likely to put a gigantic dent in wallet or anything.

I guess it's becoming a matter of pride. I get so excited when I pay barely anything for what I purchase. Who wouldn't?

But I have got to play Where's Waldo and find the Waldo-esque balance of couponing. I cannot continue to throw myself into raging fury with myself over comparative pennies.

A couple days after the 50% off coupon incident, I started to fall into another trap: the "I should have gotten a better deal, so what I am going to do about this purchase?" trap.

Here's the scenario: I went to Bath and Body Works with two coupons. The first was buy anything and get any Signature item (up to $13) free. The second was $10 off a $30 purchase.

$10 OFF ANY $30 PURCHASE  A sales girl who gave me the coupons earlier in the week said that I could use both coupons in the same transaction. Combining the coupons and their current special of buy 3, get 2 free Signature items, I could get 6 Signature items for $20. Given that these are around $13 each, that's an awesome deal!

But... dot dot dot... when I tried to use both coupons at another branch, the cashier told me I couldn't use both coupons at once. Huh? Even so, $30 for 6 items is still a steal. But the total turned out to be almost $40.

I'm so confused!

And upset. And frustrated. And... and... and...

I felt myself spiraling downward into the couponing blues. Fortunately for me, my amazing husband was available to talk me down from the cliff of Bath and Body Works coupon chaos. By the end of our conversation, I accepted two things:

1. The effect of couponing is long-term. You save a bit of money here and there. It adds up, making a significant savings, but one or two lost coupon transactions won't make a huge difference in the end. Especially given all the money I save on other things. (More on that in a different post. hee hee)

2. My time is worth money. I know, I know. Pretty basic lesson. But when I'm trying to stretch every single dollar as far as it will possibly go, that's difficult to remember. Scott made me understand that it just isn't worth it to chase after every possible savings out there. He's so right. (Again.)

No more insane quests for the best deal possible. That's my two cents. But you can't keep those two cents 'cause I'm saving money! LOL

Friday, November 12, 2010

No 13th birthdays allowed.


No. I refuse to allow my beautiful daughter to turn 13. Nope. Not gonna happen. No way. Nu-huh. Fu' getta 'bout it.

If only.

My amazing Hayley officially turned 13 at 3:59 am this morning, Nov. 12.

I just can't believe it. Wasn't it just last year that she popped out (ha!) after a grueling 35 hours of labor and 2.5 hours of pushing? As the doctor caught my red, cone-headed baby, she (Hayley, not the doctor) screamed so loud that everyone standing in the delivery room literally took an instinctive step backward. And when Scott cut the cord, "juice" squirted all over the doctor's face and glasses. She was... umm... Not. Pleased.

I wanted to put in a few photos of my Hayley through the years. I just couldn't decide which ones! So here are a few and then one taken just last week. (That one's an iPhone pic, so sorry about the quality. You get the idea, though. She's gorgeous.)

And now my Hayley-girl has surpassed me in height by 2 inches. She's tall and gorgeous and talented and intelligent and I am so incredibly proud of her.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

FREEBIES! The drugstores have some awesome deals this week!

Yup! Everything in the photo (sorry for the icky quality--my camera battery is dead) I obtained for FREE!

dental floss
cold relief medicine
2 bottle of Gain dishwashing liquid
contact lens cleaner
Schick razors

Cool, huh?

Everything came from Walgreen's except the Gain, which came from CVS. I went to Rite-Aid, but realized I forgot to grab the newspaper coupons to match up with their sales. Bummer. I have oodles of toothpaste already, but I may have to hit Rite-Aid again to get more. I mean, free is free, right? It's perfect for donating to charity and/or food pantries.

Other awesome and amazing deals of the week? 

50 cent Degree deodorant
$1 Oxy power packs (10 ct.)
$2.75 Gummy vitamins (60 ct.)
$1.29 Nestle choc. chips (12 oz. bag)
$1.99 Purex laundry detergent (32 load)

If you're interested in getting any of these deals yourself, head over to My Frugal Adventures. You'll find all the sales listed for the drugstores, plus where to find coupons for additional discounts.

Happy shopping!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Well, I blew it with NaBloPoMo.

Got sick. Went out of town. And most challenging of all, got the blogging blanks. That's where I cannot think of a single decent thing to write about on my blog.

I'm still doing the card giveaway, though, for the reader who comments the most during the month of November! One comment per post, please!

More later... right now I've got a possibly sick teenager, a tween in the shower when she should be leaving for school in 18 minutes and a husband who's heading out of town today again. *sigh*

Have a wonderful Monday, Delicious Friends!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

It's a pepper! It's a watermelon! It's an... apple gourd?

Huh? An apple gourd?

We found the hybrid-looking vegetable happily growing in among it's pumpkin relatives at the pumpkin patch yesterday. Apparently, everyone who's anyone has been looking for these apple squashes all over the patch. The  cashier thought they'd all been picked and sold, but we somehow managed to find one quite by accident.

Seriously, though. Isn't it crazy-looking? It's the shape of a green pepper. But it's got the coloring of a watermelon. And it smells like a squash.

I joined cyber hands with Google and learned that apple gourds are not edible. (Some people eat very young gourd seeds, but the seeds turn bitter as they age.)  Hhmmm... Good to know. They do make excellent crafts and birdhouses, though. Huh. Not sure I care enough to attempt anything with it, especially after said cashier told me how to dry and preserve it. It involved mold. Ew.

Thanks very much, but no. I try to avoid mold.

So what to do with this apple gourd... Think I can eBay it?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Woot! Woot! Got Toy Story 3 for FREE!!!!

I tell ya... super couponing really does work. Yes, it takes a little time, but I find it's totally worth it. I mean, look how excited I am with my CVS purchase today!

Grand Total?  $26.04!!

Now I know there are plenty of people out there who got a similar kit and kaboodle for under $20. I didn't have one of the high value coupons many others used and since I don't buy multiple copies of each Sunday's newspaper, so I usually only have one of each coupon (instead of the three or four some people have).

Here's the rundown (just in case you want to collect your own coupons and run out to CVS right away). LOL!

Spaghettio's with meatballs: 3/$5 (no coupon for this one)
Schick Hydro 5 razor: 99 cents with $4 ExtraCare (EC) bucks back and $4 off coupon
Cold Buster Syrup: $8.99 (FREE with EC bucks)
Charmin 20 pk: $9.47 with 50 cent coupon
Bounty 8 pk: 6.72 with 25 cent coupon
2 tubes Crest: 4.75 with 75 cents in coupons (not a great price, but required for the deal)
Dawn: 49 cents with 50 cent coupon
2 boxes Puffs tissues: $1.74 with 25 cent coupons
Toy Story 3 dvd: $3.99 with $16 Proctor and Gamble coupon

To get the TS3 deal, you have to buy $25 in selected Proctor and Gamble merchandise.

Now you may be noting that my title stated that I got TY3 for free, yet just above I said $3.99.  Here's where the free part came in...

Campbell's is currently running a promotion... If you buy 3 kid soups/Spaghettios and TY3 or Beauty and the Beast, they'll send you a $5 rebate. So technically... the dvd is a $2 money maker!

Woot! Woot! How cool is that???

If you need more info on where to find the coupons or the Campbell's promotion, go to and type Toy Story 3 in the search box.

Now, Delicious Readers, off you go to super coupon and SAVE!! (After you comment, that is. Heeheehee!)

Card Give-Away!

I thought about my "comment every day for a month and you could win a free set of handmade greeting cards" give away. I decided it's not really fair to start it off with absolutely no notice.

So... to be eligible to win the cards, you need to comment for at least 20 days during the month of November. Then I'll draw a winner from the eligible commentators.

Sound good? Let me know if you have questions!

Monday, November 1, 2010

NaBloPoMo! (aka National Blog Posting Month)

Since I won't be hanging out in NaNo world this November, I will instead be BLOGGING!

Every. Single. Day.

Cool, huh? I can't wait, actually. I've got a ton of ideas to write about (I should probably make a list), photos to share, experiences to discuss.

Feel like doing the daily blog adventure with me? Read all about it on

And here's a little goal for all my Delicious Readers... Stop by Delicious as Pie every day during the month of November and comment on the daily post. I will randomly choose one of the successful commentators and reward her with...

dun dun dunnnnnnnn....

A set of my deliciously adorable handmade cards, similar to those you see below...

They're pretty cute, aren't they? You know you want them. They'd make such a fantastic holiday gift for someone. Or you'd be known as the cool girl who sends out those really awesome greeting cards. LOL

Ready for the challenge? I know you are! Click "comment" now!!!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Taylor Swift's new album for pennies!

Well, almost pennies. To be precise, it's $3.99 for the mp3 download of the entire album. Can't beat that so I thought I'd share the info with you...
Speak Now

I just downloaded it and sampled a couple songs. Catchy.

Might be a great idea for a Christmas gift if you're not like me and tell your 13 year old the second that you download it. LOL

No No NaNo

National Novel Writers Month (aka NaNoWriMo or NaNo) starts in just 5 days -- Nov. 1. The goal of the month is to write a 50,000 word novel in the 30 of November. Tricky, but it can be done.

In fact, I did it last year and finished with just over 48 hours to spare.

To set such a lofty goal for myself and actually achieve it was one of the highlights of 2009 and I've been looking forward to this year's challenge ever since.

But, alas. Last week I made the very difficult decision to forgo (sp?) the NaNo 2010 challenge.

*deep, deep sigh*

I just think it would be too much stress. We'll be out of town the first weekend in November. Then the girls are out of school for two days, one of which is Hayley's bday. Then there is Hayley's sleep-over birthday party and a week and a half after that, driving up north to my parents' house for Thanksgiving.

I could probably juggle all that and still get a new novel written, but Scott will also be traveling off and on for work throughout the month. Last year, I depended on him greatly to help with laundry, cooking, kids, etc. and awesome and amazing was he. But if he's not around... that's just a recipe for frustration for both me and the girls.

And that's not fair to anyone.

So I gladly, but sadly, sacrifice NaNo 2010. My next novel will calmly wait, especially since it's still the size of an undeveloped pea in my head.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Cash. It's weird.

A couple weeks ago, my debit card started acting weird. Even though the checking account had plenty of moola, two different stores denied my card. GRRR

I stopped by the bank to see if they could figure out the issue. My account looked just fine, so the banker decided the magnetic strip on my card was wearing out. She issued me a temporary ATM card and said my new debit card would reach me in a week or so.

Since my temporary card is an ATM only card, I've used only cash. It's been forever since I've actually used cash for groceries, Target and the like.

And I like it! I feel so much more in control of my money. Hand over the cash and the transaction is finito. No seeing it "pending" in my checking account. No worrying about if my card will be strangely denied. The process is done.

My new debit card hasn't shown up yet, but I think that even when it does, I'll continue using cash. It's so freeing! Not to mention easier for the kids to understand that when I say, "Sorry, I don't have the money for that (insert book, toy, game, nail polish)" they can visually see my cash limits.

And along that line of helping the kids understand how much I've budgeted in a certain category... I've recently started using "Spend", an iPhone app. I set up categories like groceries, entertainment, clothes, eating out and enter in the budgeted amount for the month. Every time I purchase something, I enter it into the program so I can see exactly what I have left to spend for the month in that category.

That means when the kids give me the guilt trip ("But, Mom! I really need this book! I don't have any good ones to read right now and my teacher says we need to be reading a book we haven't read before yadda yadda yadda"), I whip out my phone, open the app and say, "Look! We've got this much left in our entertainment budget and you want to go to the zoo on Saturday. What's your priority?"

Mwwwaaahahhahaa! Mommy rub her hands evilly together as she reflects the angry (but comprehending) stare of the thwarted offspring. They're learning! Mommy wins again!!

Friday, October 22, 2010

I'm nursing hurt feelings today

I generally don't have time to let my feelings get hurt. I'm more concerned with making it through another crazy day, week, month in my very blessed life.

The past few days, though, I can't seem to shake a few recent events that made me feel insignificant.

I guess individual slights can be ignored, but when they stack up like soup cans on a grocery store end cap, they tend to grab my attention.

I'm now filled with self-doubt. Makes me wonder if... well, I won't go into detail.

I achieved two important milestones yesterday that I hoped would pull me out of the mire of possible self-pity: I finished the final chapter of the novel I'm writing (still much, much more editing to do) and I ran for 11 minutes on the treadmill at the Y. (I've been working hard on that one.)

Yet the murky depths of despair still yank at my legs.

This is when you yell, "Kick, Kate! Kick!" And I will kick hard (with my newly stronger legs-hee hee) and rescue myself from sadness.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I can't believe they're still alive!

"They" being the five goldfish Emma won at her school's Harvest Festival the other day.

Oh, excitement and pride lit that Bumble Bee's face when her ball landed in a glass bowl filled with colored water!

Naturally, Scott and I shared her joy. At least until the dude gave her five goldfish swimming in a sandwich-sized Ziploc. Joy.

At least her joy outshadowed her disappointment over the "no" she got for her immediate question "Can we go to the pet store and get a tank?"

Nope, the newest members of the D___ family could live in a glass Pyrex since their lives were most likely short. Very, very short. They are carnival fish, after all. We nixed the fish food, too, so Emma immediately came home and researched what goldfish actually eat: lettuce, peas, watermelon and the like. They seem to be liking their diet since... dot dot dot...

They're still alive!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Fun Blog Hop!

I know a lot of my Delicious Readers are moms, so I thought this might be a fun way to discover some new blogs that share the same interests you do--parenting, mostly! Have fun perusing and if you decide to follow, please let them know you found them through Delicious as Pie. (I've gotta increase my readership somehow, right?) :)

The Not-So-Secret Confessions of a First Time Mom

Friday, October 15, 2010

On why I can never join a book club

I'm a big scaredy cat. Plain and simple. Even the slightest bit of suspense basically puts me over the edge. And given that I can't dominate the book club and insist on Kate-friendly books only, I must forgo book clubs altogether. *sad sigh*

Take the current book I'm reading, for example: Safe Harbor by Nicholas Sparks.

Remember the Julia Roberts movie from 1990-ish called Sleeping with the Enemy? It's the movie in book form. Seriously. It's impossible not to visualize Julia as the main character.

The book and movie both are completely predictable. At least the book is as far as I can tell. I'm 75% of the way through and I don't think I can finish it.

Evil Husband has discovered where the oft-beaten to a pulp Wife is hiding and is on his way. Said Wife, new Boyfriend and his kids go to the carnival. Soon, Boyfriend has to drive a friend to a town a couple hours away, so... he'll be gone for a while. Given that Boyfriend is an ex-CSI dude, I'm sure he'll figure out the not-so-subtle clues and rescue the girl just before Evil Husband kills her.

Completely standard, right? Not all that scary.

But I am freaking out! Seriously, friends, I am shaking right now! I don't think I can finish the book. I really don't. My heart is pounding and I've been in a weird funk all day because of this book. I couldn't sleep after reading it last night and the few chapters I read weren't even scary! Just knowing what the remaining chapters held spun me into a tizzy.

Fortunately for me, my go-to movie for relaxation -- Pride & Prejudice (the Keira Knightly version) -- already inhabited the Blu-Ray player. (I couldn't sleep a few nights ago either, but that was before I started Safe Harbor.)

Alas, I think I must sever all ties with the book. Yes, I even need to delete it from my Kindle. So if one of you Delicious Readers out there happens to read it, will you tell me if it ends happily? Predictability is one thing, but Nicholas Sparks is also known for heartbreaking endings.

Off to assuage my woosey (albeit shaken) emotional state...


The sock project is OVER!

In honor of Halloween, the cutest video ever made!

This is my Delicious Emma in October 2006 just after she turned 6. I watch this video several times every October 'cause it just makes me giggle and say, "She's soooooo cute!"

Her sweet little manners, that silky blond hair and above all, her adorable little lisp. Oh, what I wouldn't give to cuddle that itty-bitty six year old one more time!

My knitting socks

No, that's not a title typo, just a little play on words...

I'm taking a class on knitting toe-up socks. That's where you start knitting from the toe instead of the traditional way (from the top).

Apparently, I suck at knitting socks.

I had no idea it was more of an intermediate/advanced class when I signed up for it. I merely saw it in the yarn shop newsletter and thought, "Oh, what a great idea for Christmas gifts!"

Really, not so much.

It took several (ok, many) tries for me to get properly started, but I got into a groove and was doing fine. Fortunately, I went into the store last night just for a little guidance 'cause as it turns out, I missed a key piece of info in the directions:

"Use a stockinette stick on the needle two."

That means, only do the cool decoration stitches on the top of the sock and do a basic knit stitch on the bottom. Apparently, it's not so comfortable to walk on the decoration stitches.

So in I walk last night, all proud to show the instructor the two inches of sock I've spent hours creating this week. She looks at it and says, "Uh oh."

And out unraveled hours and hours of sore shoulders, deep breaths, and strained eyes.

I'm almost ready to throw in the sock (as opposed to the towel). But being that I spent an insane amount of money on the class and supplies, I can't, in good faith, give up. Not that I give up easily anyway. I hate failing.

Seriously, though. These socks should be made of spun gold for what I paid. $35 for the class. $22 for two circular needles. $16 for the yarn. See?

I should be able to pawn these things for a set of solid gold knitting needles with a matching crochet needle to rescue all my dropped stitches.


Had I realized the great extend my wallet would be stretched, I wouldn't have taken the class.

But I did and I'm not going to give up. And this time, I'm going to photograph the darned things (get it? darned? ahahahahahahahaha!) every step of the way so all my Delicious Readers can see my agony and then feel my jubilation when I finally slide them on my cold tooties.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Bad Mommy! Bad!

I forgot about her science project due, of course, tomorrow. Oops.

But then again, so did she.

So guess what we did today? Aside from the five worksheets and chapter of reading she had to do...

We built a diagram of Argon--you know, the 18th element of the blah blah blah table of the blah blah blah table of elements. An oh so information paragraph graced the diagram, so I can now tell you all about the gas that is more common in our atmosphere than carbon dioxide and is related to blah blah blah blah blah...

Don't worry... I tuned myself out about that same time. Maybe even a little earlier. (heehee)

I am happy to report that I was not the only mother at Michael's buying supplies at 8:45pm. She can have the Bad Mommy trophy on Tuesday, Thursdays and Saturdays and alternating Sundays.

It's now 10:21 and I just put Emma to bed. Poor thing worked for six hours on homework today. She's exhausted. I'm exhausted.

And I can now say with absolute certainty... I am SO not smarter than a fifth grader!

Monday, October 11, 2010

A wicked cool app for musicians

The girls' music teacher told us about the "Amazing Slow Downer". It slows down the music you're listening to (Suzuki violin book 3, in our case) so the musician-in-training can actually hear what every single note is supposed to sound like!

Wowee wow wow. (Totally rockin').

Here's the one I used...

Free only in trial version (natch), it's pretty pricey to meet at $49.99. But then again if it helps the girls with their music..... might be worth it.

Oh, please forgive my use of the delicious adjective "wicked" in the title of this post. I've been informed by my 10 year old that moms are not allowed to say that. (whatev)

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Delicious Review:

A few weeks ago, I received a free set of faux diamond earrings from

My Delicious Opinion? Not bad at all... They are beautiful, well made and felt so comfortable in my ears. You know how sometimes earrings can irritate or itch? And sometimes, even when they don't bother you, you can just feel them? Not so with these earrings. They're actually comfortable. (BTW, the posts are made of sterling silver.)

I wore them for one week straight, not even taking them off when I slept. Lots of people complimented the earrings and my girls begged to wear them themselves.

Now I'm not a diamond expert, so I can't claim to have examined them with a jeweler's glass. So whether you can tell the difference between these faux diamonds and the real thing, I don't know. I can't imagine anyone peering at your ears when you wear them anyway, so I think you'll be safe regardless.

They're not for sale yet... is still getting the word out by mailing out free sets of the earrings in exchange for an honest review. I got in the gig early enough that I didn't even have to pay shipping.(Woot! Woot!) Now you do, but it's only $3.77. Pretty nominal, huh?

So... final opinion? I like 'em!!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I'm moving.

At least in my head I'm moving, if not actually physically.

I'm removing myself to Guernsey, one of the Channel Islands off the south coast of England.

How could you not want to move to a place where cows sport hippie-style headwear?

Or where wild flowers wave hello every direction you turn?

Or where a dedicated monk envisioned and created a chapel fully ensconced in mosaic tiles?

Go here to see the inside of the chapel. Holy moly. I'm imagining said monk to be deaf. How else could one stand the continuous barrage of breakage?

The only downside of moving to Guernsey (and it's just a tiny downside) is that the cliffs, spectacular though they may be, do not get along well with my absolute terror of heights. I may well have to walk around with a leash and a picket.

So who's up to moving with me? We can read and write and play in the surf and run through the wildflower and eat beef. Lots and lots of beef. This is where Guernsey cows come from, after all.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Adventure in the 'hood...

Woo wooooo! Silence.

Woo wooooo! Silence.

Woo woooooo! Silence again.

Uh oh. Emergency vehicles in the neighborhood. Please, God, keep everyone safe.

Fire engines, police cars, haz mat, you name it lined the entire street just below ours.

A house lay victim to a jet fuel hose that somehow fell from an airplane entertaining the crowds at the Miramar Air Show. It's believed that it still had fuel in it, so officials took every precaution possible to keep the neighborhood safe.

The lady in the red shirt is the owner of the house that got hit.
Here she's getting sincere apologies from the Marines. (I told you everybody was there!)

Thank God, no one sustained injury. But two homes were cordoned off with police tape and one of those homes has roof damage.

The drama seems minimized as I type out the story. But trust me, it was heavy. No one in the neighborhood knew what was going on for quite a while, so anxiety ran rampant. In fact, I was in the shower when I heard just one too many fire engines go by. I quick rinsed out the conditioner and hopped out, dripping on the floor as I ran to the balcony to smell for smoke. None, thank goodness.

Even still, I ran to the girls and told them to get dressed immediately, that something was up in the neighborhood and we needed to be ready to leave if necessary. The situation did upset Emma enough that she wouldn't leave my side for the next hour.  Hayley told her to pack a bag--it would make her feel better.

Okay then......... Here's what's in a 10 yr. old's "grab and go" bag:

cell phone
house key
ear phones
empty Target gift card
a small stuffed kitty and it's teeny tiny pillow
a 6" pillar candle (no wonder the bag was so heavy!!)
sponges (seriously?)
autograph book
cheese hair band
clay whistle
hand mirror (belonged to her great grandma)
a small, squishy sumo wrestler (really????)
some jewelry
some amethyst (again, heavy)
her iPod

Did you giggle like I did?

Anyway, HazMat was still set up in front of that unfortunate house as late as 5pm.

Kudos to all the city/military/emergency officials who made sure everything was safe!

Phew. I think I need a weekend from my weekend.