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January 27, 2015 is the day that my mom passed. She had glioblastoma multiforme aka brain cancer. Every year, around this time, I celebrate her memory by posting something on Facebook or Instagram. It never seems to be enough though. I write small paragraphs to try to get out my feelings and it never seems sufficient.
This year, she’s been on my mind so heavy that I thought maybe today is the day that I finally listen to one the many voice messages that she left me and that I saved. I hadn’t been able to listen in all this time. It’s just been too hard.
As I stood in the shower tonight, I broke down because I just really needed my mom; to hear her, to feel her…to just be around her. So, I opened up one of the files to listen to her voice.
This was the hardest thing I’ve had to do since she left me. The message was her telling me that she was worried that she hadn’t heard from me. She was hoping that I was okay and to please call her.
I’m calling now, mom. Can you hear me? I miss you too. Just give me a call when you get this message. I love you with all my heart.
One day, I’ll be able to share these messages with my kids without falling apart. They’ll be able to hear your voice asking how they were and how much you loved them. I don’t want them to ever forget you. I love you. Thank you for everything you gave me and sacrificed for me. Thank you for loving me.
Stay-at-Home-Moms (SAHMs) typically look forward to the end of the day, when every one and every thing is quiet. That’s when we go to our hiding place. My hiding place happens to be my bathroom. I can close the door and think, or dream, or beautify, or just sit quietly and meditate.
Recently however, my hiding place has become no longer that. It has been compromised. This is what has been happening lately:
As I’m sitting on my vanity chair, I hear from a distance, “Mommm.” It’s my five year old daughter. She should be sleep, but has decided that finding out my location is a top priority- as I had not received clearance from her to disappear. I know she’s coming, so I sit as still and stay as quiet as I can.
“Mommmm. Dad, where’s mom?” I listen for his response, because of course, he’s got my back – I am he, he is me. We are one. And of course, he knows it’s after her bedtime and he needs to direct her to go back to her room and go to bed. But no. He tells her my exact location. “She’s in the bathroom.”
So, now I hear footsteps coming closer to the door. “Mom, are you in there?”
No response from me…I’m hiding.
“Mom, are you in there?”
“Yes. What do you want?”
“What are you doing?”
“Nothing. What do you want?”
“Are you on the potty?”
“Sure. What do you want?”
“Did you have to boo boo?”
“WHAT DO YOU WANT?”
“Are you mad?”
Face palm. “Omg. What do you want? I’m in the bathroom. I’ll be out in a minute.”
“Can you put on my band-aid?”
“SERIOUSLY? GO ASK YOUR DAD!”
Now, I’m rushing through the shower just so I can place my hands around my husband’s neck. He heard all of this, but didn’t rush to help me (or her for that matter). I love my kids with my entire heart, but I definitely need a new hiding place.
So, I had every intention on blogging Saturday but I had a lupus flare and it completely zapped my energy. After grocery shopping and hanging out with my sisters, I was supposed to come home and brag about how much I saved at the store, but I crashed and burned. I think I was asleep before my head touched the pillow. I had that “I’m so angry that if I don’t go to bed NOW, somebody is going to get hurt” type of sleepiness.
Then, at 2:30am, I woke up in pain in my side, in my back and I had a migraine. I didn’t even get sleepy until a half hour before I had to take my daughter to swim class – ten hours later. I couldn’t take any meds because they just make me sleepy or woozy and I never like feeling like that. Sure, my body would’ve felt better, but it’s like walking in a fog. I decided to just drink some coffee. LOL Yes, I have tea and I know that would’ve been a better choice, but I have a serious coffee addiction. Thankfully, it doesn’t keep me awake. It totally relaxes me.
Having said all of that, I didn’t save a lot of money. I did okay, but I recognize that I needed more help with couponing. I’ve signed up to a few of the Facebook couponing groups to get tips and tricks. I’ll go tomorrow to see how well I do on buying school supplies at Target using their ideas. Either I need more coupons or I need to make a list and travel to different stores instead of getting everything at one. I did end up going to Kroger to get my free eggs and free Ragu pasta sauce using the coupons they sent me though. Love those! Here are my savings:
I’ll post my savings from Target tomorrow – God willing. Good night!
Today, I woke up on a mission to save more money. I’ve already been clipping coupons, using my store rewards and shopping apps. So, I decided to go to the website of some of my favorite brands, such as Snuggle, Ziploc, Proctor & Gamble and Kelloggs to see if they have any additional savings. I recognized that I spend more money on these brands than anything else.
What I found were pretty good coupons on Kelloggs (plus points), P&G and Ziploc – very nice!! I didn’t find any coupons on Snuggle, but I did join the Snuggle Bear Den, so hopefully they will send some soon! It’s also really convenient to be able to link my store cards so that the savings go right onto the rewards. I don’t have to fumble through so many coupons when I’m shopping when I’m able to do that.
Day 4 of my new Journaling Journey and I am still enjoying the process. I’ve realized that from writing down my goals for the day, that sometimes I set the bar too high. For example, yesterday I wrote that I would take my daughter to school, work out for an hour, then come home clean for an hour and then go back to pick up my daughter from school, cook dinner, wash dishes, etc.
Ok, so this is what really happened: I dropped her off, I worked out, then I came home and passed out for an hour. I had to put off cleaning until after my daughter got home and had lunch. I got it done though – house cleaned from top to bottom and I’d worked out. I had accomplished what I didn’t think I could do in a relatively short period of time.
Also, the fact that my meals are all planned out, removes the stress of trying to think of something last minute or ordering take out. I also learned to write on my dry erase board that’s attached to the fridge – a menu for the day. There are no changes either – no additions or deletions. Stress free. I’m loving it so far.
So… my husband purchased a “Life & Apples” growth planner and I’ve decided that today would be the day to start logging in my affirmations, tasks and goals for my life. I actually started brainstorming and writing small notes a week prior so that when I opened my planner, I would be ready…hopefully.
What I soon realized however, is that what I thought were just small, attainable goals actually required many steps to achieve. For example, under the “Career and Finances” category – I wrote that I wanted to stop using my credit cards as much as I have been in the last three months. To do that, requires me to cut down on spending. Therefore, I checked my bank and credit card accounts to see where the bulk of my spending was and it was *insert drum roll* grocery shopping. Ridiculous! I used to coupon and check the weekly ads for sales, but I’d stopped that and just started shopping every week all willy nilly. (It doesn’t help that I live within five miles of Target, two Meijer stores, Walmart and Kroger) – so my spending has definitely increased. I realized that I would have to become more organized with my shopping lists and spending habits.
I started by writing down and numbering every meal that I like to make for the family complete with sides. I wrote down the corresponding numbers to days of the week.
Monday – #1 – Meatballs with gravy, mashed potatoes and green beans.
Tuesday – #5 – Tacos, etc…
Then, I wrote down all the necessary ingredients that I would need for each meal.
On a separate sheet of paper, I began writing down the items that I didn’t have available in my fridge or pantry and I started clipping coupons. I then went to my Ibotta app and my Checkout 51 app to see what would be eligible for rebates later and wrote that down. My next step was to go to each store’s website to see what was on sale, clip my rewards and go shopping. I decided on Meijer for this shopping trip. (I also use the Shopkick app while in the store which is why I can’t shop with my kids – I need to concentrate). It seems like a lot of work but gets easier over time. I ended up saving over $50 – with an additional $7.50 in eligible rebates!
At least now I can start the week off with savings! I knocked off a couple of tasks in pursuit of the goal of cutting down on my spending and that felt great. I’m also going to look around to find out other ways to save today.
I think this planner is the way to go! I can look at my goals at the beginning of the week and see much I’ve achieved at the end. I just have to be consistent…in everything. Wish me luck!