Thursday, April 24, 2008

Gas Prices Still on the Rise!

California has the highest gas prices in the US. Luckily some of the parents are starting to carpool to away games and other events. Is anyone else starting to ride their bikes and walk more? Where we live in Northwestern PA gas is at $3.61, higher than the national average. What is the price of gas where you live?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Earth Day

Today is Earth Day. I didn't even realize it until we were getting my 7-year old ready for bed last night and he stated that he needed an Earth Day hat for today. "I won't be allowed to be in the Earth Day parade if I don't have an Earth Day hat made out of recycled stuff!"

(Ugh!) "Go tell your dad."

I went upstairs to put my daughter to bed and found my husband folding, taping, and cutting the comic's section of the newspaper. I looked at him with a blank look. THAT is going to be his Earth Day hat? Then I looked at my son. He had a HUGE smile on his face.

"Can I wear it on the way to school tomorrow?"

"Sure! And what a great job YOU did on that hat!"

"Dad made it."

(I know.)

I didn't realize that today was even Earth Day, but I find myself being more and more environmentally conscious all the time. What's on my mind mostly now is using less gas. I'm trying to drive as little as possible. I've been walking my son to and home from school every day. My husband even rides his bike to work. It's pretty far, about a 20 minute drive across town.

I also try not to give my kids ride to places that they can walk. Yesterday my daughter asked me if I could drive her to her friend's house that was about 5 blocks away. "No. You can walk or ride your bike. And on your way could you stop at Grandma's house and pick up her paper for her (to save me a trip)?"

Then my 12-year old son's friend called and asked if he could go golfing. "Sure. Why don't you guys walk there?" It's only a few blocks away. His friend replied, "I'm not allowed to. And could YOUR mom drive us there?"

Saturday, April 19, 2008

A Beautiful Day for a Day Off of School

Yesterday the kids had the day off of school. It was a built in snow day to use if we had any snow days to make up, but we didn't, surprisingly! It was also the nicest day to have the day off. It was sunny and about 70'.

One of my sons went fishing in the creek across the street.

My oldest daughter just "hung out" under a tree.

My 4-year old just runs around everyone all day.

My 12-year old played two rounds of golf and then some basketball.

What did I do? The usual - raking, washing windows, laundry, scrubbing down the back of the house.

So what do you do on a beautiful day like this?

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

A Couple of Good Deals

I must admit, I love to shop. But what I love most of all, is a good deal. Here are a couple of good deals that I came upon recently:

Sign up for sale alerts at Kohl's online and receive a $5.00 coupon to use on anything in the store and also a 10% coupon for any online purchase.

Also, today is the last day for free shipping at Lands End. I bought myself a pair of sandals, but they have some great clearance items. For example, kids action sandals are only $7.99.

They also have TONS of women's bathing suits on sale.

I love Lands End because I can return the items at Sears, so I don't have to pay for shipping. Also, you can return any item, for any reason, at any time, even without a receipt! What store can say that nowadays?

Saturday, April 12, 2008

I'm finally back to the bloggy world! This is the longest break I've taken. I think I could spend the whole day today just reading everyone's blogs and commenting!

I've been working hard all week trying to finish my spring cleaning. BTW, I'm still not finished. I've washed windows, curtains, carpets, cleaned closets, organized bedrooms, and on and on. I still need to clean my couches, finish washing windows and curtains, clean the garage and basement, and tons of outside work. I wish I was one of the lucky ones who could just hire someone to do it!

In the middle of all this cleaning, my dryer broke! Help! I was just getting ready to do FIVE loads when my dryer wouldn't turn back on. I already had it fixed once, and it IS 15 years old, so we decided to just buy a new one. Problem was, the dryer we picked out wouldn't be delivered for a week! I have four kids and can't go one day without doing laundry, so I've been taking all my wet laundry to my mom's house. It took up a lot of my time.

So anyway, my husband found a great deal online! We paid only $260! It was a clearance model that just happened to be top of the line! How could I pass this up? There are so many buttons, that I need to study the manual just to figure out how to work it.

I'm sure I won't use all the options, but one really cool feature - the sweater dryer. You lay your sweater neatly on the rack to it doesn't get tossed around in the dryer. Hey, who knows, maybe the antibacterial cycle will come in handy! I just got it yesterday, so I play on trying it all out today, along with catching up on all my blogging!

Monday, April 7, 2008

I was tagged by Cathy at A Bit of the Blarney.

1. The rules of the game get posted at the beginning.
2. Each player answers the questions about themselves.
3. At the end of the post, the player tags 5 people and posts their name, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they've been tagged and asking them to read your blog.

What I was doing 10 years ago:

Ten years ago I only had two kids and was living in my old small house. I didn't realize how easy I had it then!

Five Snacks I enjoy:

1. Ice Cream
2. Chocolate
3. Nachos
4. Homemade Cookies
5. Chips and Dip

Things I would do if I were a billionaire:

1. A billion dollars is a lot of money. Of course I would give to charities!
2. Buy a new house with a bigger yard.
3. Travel - England, Hawaii, Caribbean.
4. Buy a house in Hilton Head.
5. Go out to eat more often!

Five jobs that I have had:

1. Teacher
2. Pizza maker
3. Convenience store clerk
4. Wife
5. Stay-at-home mommy

Three of my habits:

1. Blogging too much!
2. Playing Spider Solitaire (I love to play the hard version).
3. Always looking at what I need to clean next.

Five place I have lived: (This is easy)

1. Northwestern, PA
2. Northwestern, PA
3. Northwestern, PA
4. Northwestern, PA
5. Northwestern, PA

(Yes, I've lived in the same city my whole life!)

Five People I Want to Get to Know Better: (a nice way of saying TAG!)

1. Thankful for Another Day
2. Renaissance Mama
3. The Journey Begins Here
4. Stuck in Frump, Striving for Fab
5. Juggling Life

Saturday, April 5, 2008

I'm a garbage collector

I don't go to a lot of garage sales. I usually only go to the ones in my neighborhood. What I really like to do, though, is take home the good stuff that other people are throwing away. I usually find my "treasures" while on my walks.

I picked up this really nice basket just last Sunday. We were coming home from my mom's house and I told my husband to pull over. He didn't want to, but I wouldn't take no for an answer. I told my son to go see if it looked all right. Meanwhile, hubby was practically hiding under the seat from embarrassment. Who couldn't use a basket like this? Why just let this get thrown into the landfill?

This is a makeup table I got from another neighbor's house. I didn't even know this neighbor, but I saw her putting it out and met her. It was her table from when she was little. It has a glass top which was in perfect condition. I painted it white, and now my daughter uses it every day.

I picked up this desk from another neighbor. It's actually a student desk, but I painted it white, and put it next to our bookcases in our bedroom. My husband uses it all the time to do work on his laptop.

The weirdest thing I ever picked up:
Yes, I really did. I was, once again, on my Sunday evening walk, when I noticed a bag of cat litter at the end of my neighbor's driveway. It had a sign on it :FREE CAT LITTER

I thought, what kind of joke is this? Then I saw in smaller print, "We changed the kind of litter we used." Oh, it's UNUSED litter. Well, I have a cat. He doesn't care what kind of litter is in his box. I may as well bring it home. Also, I knew this neighbor. She and her husband are both teachers at the local college. They're normal people. When I got home and walked in the door I said, "Hey, dear, you'll never believe what I brought home tonight!"

"I don't believe it!", he said.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Every Day Is Earth Day

Yesterday was such a beautiful day! It was sunny and warm. The kids were all playing outside (in the mud). I decided to take my youngest two across the street to our little park to pick up some of the garbage left over from the winter.

Usually we go over a few times a year to clean it up. I haven't been there for about a whole year. There was so much garbage! We each took a bag to fill up, and we had to dump our bags three times back at home. I've never seen anyone else over there cleaning up. Just at the end of the street there were about 6 milk cartons stuck in the bushes. All the plastic bags... We cleaned up the leftovers of a teenager's party. It was quite an adventure - fishing cans out of a lake that had formed, climbing through bushes, and stepping in what my son called (quick sand).

April 19 is the United Way Day of Caring. Our Boy Scouts will be cleaning up the beach. Afterwards, lunch will be provided. That's great. It teaches the kids that in order to keep our world clean, we all need to work together. But why do we need a special day to clean up? EVERY day should be Earth Day! We should all work together to not only keep our beaches clean, but our neighborhoods, too. I've been looking at the garbage across the street for weeks now. No one else ever goes over to help. The Day of Caring will be filled with people.

This was my recycling can that was empty before we started picking up the garbage. This does not include the non-recyclables that were thrown in the regular cans.