Wednesday, December 22, 2010


The Vintage Pearl is having another amazing giveaway... any piece of jewelry you want (up to $100), made and rush shipped to you in time for Christmas!!!! Go here to enter!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

$100 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway!!!

There is a great giveaway for a $100 Amazon Gift Card on this great site! To enter, all you have to do it check out this cool shopping site and leave Fun Saving Money a comment about a great deal you found there. Check it out!!

Thursday, December 16, 2010


It's 5pm on a Thursday and Baby Girl just went down for a late nap. Running errands for a good part of the day doesn't help keep her on a good nap schedule, but she is such a trooper and always so cheerful when we're out. She's a little social butterfly. Currently, she loves waving at people and things... be it the empty cars in the parking lot or an elderly man in the dairy department at Walmart. This afternoon we browsed a Hallmark store (gosh, how long has it been since I was in a Hallmark store???) and she was fascinated... especially when we got to the aisle full of dog statues. She started babbling and chattering and squealing with delight. Moments like that delight my soul way deep down. On the way home, we were listening to the local country music station (an occasional guilty pleasure of mine. So shoot me!) and a very lively, boppy kind of song came on. I glanced in my rear-view mirror to see her reaction and grinned when I saw a huge smile fill her little face and I watched as she started wiggling and bopping in her carseat. She is such a continual joy! Who could ever say that kids are a bother? This little girl with her bright blue eyes, chubby cheeks, and barely-there hair is the bright spot of my days.

Not many weeks ago it was Thanksgiving. It was a lovely weekend, really. In preparation, I spent a day with my sister-in-law baking pies and other treats for the big family get-together. The morning of the holiday I baked cinnamon rolls (our new holiday tradition), and we made coffee. Husby had a rare 4-day weekend, and it was amazing to spend 4 long days with him, doing whatever we wanted to do. Sleeping in past 6:30am, snuggling with Baby Girl in our bed, eating WAY too much pie, and just being together as a family. It was pure heaven.

While the past few weeks (and months!) have been relatively easy, in comparison to the summer of Husby being away all the time, I have still struggled to stay "up" emotionally. We're out of the apartment and in a house and the space is lovely. I am so completely grateful for this chance to get ahead financially for a few months, but at the same time, it's hard to live in a space that's not really ours. I'm grateful that we get along so well with the in-laws, and that the days they are here rarely include drama, but I will be relieved when we are in our own home again and I don't need to be "on" all the time. Honestly, I can't wait to "nest" in my own little place and make it all mine. But is it clear that I am grateful for such a wonderful place to live? Baby Girl has her own room, Husby and I have our own space, it's warm and so much more space, and I'm in love with the washer and dryer. I'm somewhat frustrated at myself for being so melancholy and struggling so much when I am so blessed. Does this make any sense to anyone? I haven't conquered this yet, but I was brought back to reality twice in the past week. The first time, when we were able to help provide some basic necessities and a few Christmas surprises for a friend with two young daughters who is jobless and homeless. She was overjoyed beyond words and I realized how much my little family actually has. I'm ashamed to be here whining in my head because we don't have more. The second reality check was Sunday, when Husby and I were volunteering at a Toys for Tots distribution. I had to choke back tears several times as I observed the hundreds of families in need. Their faces told stories that would break your heart. Again, I was reminded of how incredibly blessed I am. Life has been treating us well. God has provided for us exactly what we have needed, although often not more. We have plenty to eat, a warm place to sleep, reliable transportation, and small pleasures. Our dreams and desires are big, and it's been a struggle this fall to be content and grateful for where God has us when it seems so far from where we want to be. We certainly have no reason to complain. I am determined to be grateful and JOYFUL in my circumstances.

Christmas is only a week away. How is that even possible? I've pretty much been a complete slacker in regards to Christmas and gifts this year, so much so that I'm afraid my family's gifts will not arrive on their doorstep until New Years... It dawned on me yesterday that this is the first time in my life that I will not be with my mom and siblings for Christmas. That thought put a bit of a damper on a day that was already cloudy, and carried over into today. Blah.... My therapy? I've been baking cookies out the wazoo. (Hello 5lbs that I lost before Thanksgiving...) Come visit me. I'll share a plate of melt-in-your-mouth iced sugar cookies and a pot of coffee, and we will chat while laughing at the antics of my rosy-cheeked 11-month old daughter.

Merry Christmas.
Let the peace of Christ dwell in you always.
Happy New Year.
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-laa-laaaaa......