Thursday, February 24, 2011

Some Things I Wouldn't Buy, Even with a Coupon

Since beginning to coupon, I've been convicted especially about what I'm feeding my family, not just how much we are spending on groceries. At first I would get pretty much anything if it were way cheap, but there are a few things that didn't sit right with my soul while I watched my kids eat their meals. I'm not trying to pass judgement on these products or people who buy them, but as long as our budget allows, I will buy things that are a little more expensive because they are higher quality.
  • Yoplait yogurt- At least for the regular and light varieties, I do not buy these. The regular variety is just way too sweet to call yogurt. And the light variety is sweet in a fake-tasting way. Besides, it's cheaper to get milk on a good sale and use it to make yogurt. 
  • Anything but Adams peanut butter- Similar to the yogurt reason, I've found that the other peanut butters (Jif, Skippy, store brands) contain unnecessary sugar or oil. Adams peanut butter is wonderfully natural tasting! The only downside is there are rarely coupons or store deals. :( 
  • Lunchmeats- We are blessed to have an amazing butcher/deli close-by, DD Meats, which sells very high quality lunchmeat at less than $4/lb. I have recently seen some awesome deals on store lunchmeat in the deli case that match nicely with manufacturer coupons. I even bring them to the store with me, intending buy it, but when I get there I can't bring myself to buy it! 
  • Various canned goods, like Spaghetti-o's- I bought these one time on a great store matchup, but again couldn't bring myself to feed them to my kids. I remember hating Spaghetti-o's when I was a kid, the noodles were just nastified. I ended up donating them to the food bank, which I kind of felt bad about because it's probably not the most nutritional food.
  • Microwave meals (a la Weight Watchers meals)- In high school I lived on these WW meals and they were okay. But now, even with a coupon, I can't bring myself to buy them and frequently do the same thing as with the lunchmeats, bringing coupons to the store and then chickening out. The idea of eating something that was frozen 2 minutes ago and was cooked in a plastic dish doesn't sit well with my conscience. 
A clip that made me laugh, especially while I was thinking about what I buy for my family, is a recent sermon about the parable of the Great Banquet. Fast forward to about 44 minutes and Driscoll will show what won't be at the big party with Jesus.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Happy *Belated* Birthday Wesley and Caley!

I feel like such a bad blogging mama. It's been almost a month and I've barely mentioned Caley and Wesley's birthdays. I plead being too busy! We had a busy few weekends of birthday parties, family parties, Coffee-Mate and Superbowl parties, on top of our regular schedule. Make no mistake, even though I was silent on this blog about their birthdays, they were very much celebrated here in "real life."
I'm pleasantly surprised at how well Wesley and Caley play together, despite being 5 years apart. They love to crawl around and play peek-a-boo and Caley picks Wesley up and he doesn't seem to mind. At first I didn't like when she picked him up, but it's proven quite useful like when we're in a stinky public restroom and Mommy needs to use the potty!
For Wesley's birthday party we had a joint party with his birthday buddy Magnus. Ande posted some pictures from the party here. We decided to do a Potato Head theme because Max always calls Wesley "Weseley Oval Head" and Magnus "Magnus Meatball Head." We served baked potatoes and toppings, meatballs, potato chips and tater tots. Healthy, I know. I made a cake and Ande made potato ice creams, which is ice cream rolled in cocoa powder and topped with whipped cream. It was a crazy fun morning with lots of friends, presents, and games.

Ande made Wesley a potato shirt!

Magnus is the Potato Head with teeth because he has like 20!
It's funny how when Caley turned 1 I was worried about making a healthy cake with carrot bits and very little sugar. With Wesley he got a box cake, which I accidentally added twice as much oil to.
Magnus really enjoyed the cake and ice cream!
Wesley wasn't too sure about it.

The day after Wesley's birthday we celebrated Caley's birthday at Red Robin. My parents, David, Bill's parents, Erin and family, and Rachel and family. The only ones who couldn't make it were Matt and family and Adam. Considering how big Bill's family is, I was impressed how many people came! What a blessing to have so many people who love us! Caley got an ice cream sundae and the people sang to her. She was a little blindsided by the whole thing!

Wesley eating some of Caley's ice cream from a corndog stick.

For Caley's birthday she asked for an Ariel theme. I made an Ariel cake and we played fishing. She also asked for pizza for dinner. So she invited 10 little girls over and it was a Friday evening party (no I cannot handle a 10-little-girl-sleepover). They played dress up and danced to Disney tunes. It was another crazy fun party!
I felt kind of weird putting a bra on Ariel, realizing she's really not wearing much! What's up with the role modeling Disney?!

Just keep feeding them candy and it'll all be okay!
I cannot believe she is 6! What happened to my little baby girl?

We are so blessed to have friends and family who love us and love our kids! I will post something to each Caley and Wesley too.