Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Back to Reality

Now that the trip is over, it is kind of depressing to have real life set back in. Sometimes I wonder if it wouldn't be easier just not to go at all. Don't worry, there will be no wrist slicing here just a bit of pouting.
But it did get me thinking about our budget. Maybe my being cheap and this house has something to do with it. Some people live in sick houses, I live in the house that causes me to be cheap. It could be. I keep thinking about retiring on the beach and spending the rest of my days picking up shells and relaxing. My dream could come true but not anytime soon. I just think that I need to trim the budget a little more. Every penny I save now will get me one step closer to having sand between my toes. I started thinking about what I could do to save a dollar a day. It's been done to death but what about making it permanent. So trim $30 off of your budget forever! That's my goal for the month, to cut $30 off for good. And I'm issuing a challenge to all of you. Trim $30 in the next 30 days off of your budget and then use that $360 a year to pay off your bills and get you closer to your dream. Sand in your swim trunks sounds pretty inviting doesn't it. Please keep me posted on your progress and good luck!!
Thanks for stopping over,

Monday, October 26, 2009

Our Vacation!!

Just a quick run down of the trip! On Monday, we went to Universal Studios. WOW! It was great and they have a new coaster called Rockit. For all coaster enthusiasts, this is a must. The above picture is of the Mummy ride and it was great. And I got a free week ticket for Universal so I was in cheap heaven. I thought it was a great bargain for $99, you get a ticket that is good for a week and you can use it at both parks. The staff was super friendly, too. It's a much better deal than Disney but no matter what you still have to visit Magic Kingdom. It's a must if you go to FL, it may be the law.

-->On Tuesday, we went to Magic Kingdom. I couldn't believe that I was able to do two parks in two days. I was quite pleased with myself. And because it was the middle of October, the park was pretty empty. I think the longest we waited for a ride was 20 minutes. Bonus! And it was Den's birthday so he got in for free. He wore a birthday button and all the employees wished him happy birthday. He is shy but I think he liked it because he wore the button all day. People were calling out his name all day and stopping him, it was kind of like being married to a rock star for the day!

-->Wednesday, Den visited one of his friends that he used to work with. He has a strange form of lymphoma. It is triggered by cold weather. It is very odd but the doctors seem to have it under control. The kids and I stayed by the pool all day. It was so hot that it broke records. I couldn't ask for anything better. And since my brother is going to golf school in FL, we got to see him too. The above picture is from Thursday, when we went to Universal's Island of Adventure. It was another great park. We will be going back. All I can say is WOW, Universal has definitely has stepped it up. I was really impressed.

-->Friday our last day, we went to Ron Jon's bought some souvenirs and a body board.

-->The kids forgot to wear their suits and had to change in the trunk. And the kicker is, there was an officer in the parking lot watching and didn't have a problem with us putting our kids in the trunk and closing the lid. Just as long as we had money in the meter, it was all good! We had a great time body surfing and we all decided that we wanted to live on the beach. Not a bad dream!
I missed you all so much, thanks for not forgetting about me!

Love to all,

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


Hello everyone! I missed you so much. And I came to the conclusion that I like you all so much more than my family. After a week of being together, we need a vacation from each other. I am still trying to get back into the swing of things so I probably won't get back to regular posting until next week. But I can say that it was a great trip and we had a lot of fun. I missed you!!! Thank you all for the wonderful comments on my book. I love when you all feed my ego.;)
Lots of love,

Friday, October 16, 2009

Last Excerpt

I still miss you all!
This is the last excerpt from Dissipate.

Tom is the grocery store manager and Linda and Christine's boss.
Gerald Jr is the grocery store owner.

“Just give me a quarter,” Linda said.
Christine opened her purse and pulled out her change purse. She located
a quarter and held it out for Linda. She never looked her in the eye.
“I’m sick of you,” Linda said and yanked the quarter out of her hand.
Linda walked over to the pay phone next to the front doors of the grocery
store. She dropped the quarter in and punched in the numbers angrily.
“Why do I get stuck with all the terrible jobs?” Linda said very quietly to
Christine as she listened to the phone ring.
“Hey, I cleaned your house,” Christine shot back.
Linda gave Christine a dirty look.
“Hello?” A weak man’s voice answered.
“Hello, Mr. Smith. Could I please speak to Gerald Jr.?” Linda said.
“What?” the old man said.
“Gerald Jr.,” Linda yelled into the phone.
Christine started giggling loudly. Linda slipped her hand over the mouth
piece of the phone.
“Quiet,” Linda said in a motherly tone.
“He can’t hear you or me,” Christine laughed.
Linda shot her a dirty look.
“TALK TO GERALD JR.,” Linda yelled into the phone.
Christine’s laughter got louder. Linda shook her head no at Christine.
“WHAT?” the old man shouted into the phone. Linda yanked the phone
away from her ear with a grimace.
“Why is it when someone can’t hear, they shout too? He’s the one with the
hearing problem. Well, if he keeps shouting you’re going to be deaf too,”
Christine laughed rudely.
Linda giggled and then shot Christine a dirty look.
“GERALD JR.,” Linda shouted again. She yanked the phone from her ear
as soon as she finished speaking.
“WHERE?” He screamed into the phone.
Christine could hear him from where she was. Linda and Christine laughed
really loud. Linda didn’t even bother to cover the phone.
“SPEAK WITH GERALD!” Linda yelled into the phone.
“LICK IT WHO!” the confused man answered.
Christine and Linda were laughing so hard they had tears rolling down their
“You’re such a bitch. You’re just teasing the old man,” Christine laughed
as walked up next to Linda.
Christine got closer to the phone and started breathing heavily into it. Linda
was trying to push her away. She was having a hard time keeping her away
because the phone cord was so short.
“STOP IT!” Linda yelled at Christine.
“Oh God, I’m going to pee myself,” Christine said.
“TOPLESS WHAT!” the man said.
“GET AWAY FROM ME! I hope you pee all over yourself,” Linda said
as she pulled the phone away from Christine. Christine struggled with Linda
to keep her ear next to the phone.
“WHO THE HELL IS THIS?” a different man asked.
Linda and Christine’s eyes bugged out at each other.
“Is this Mr. Smith Jr.?” Linda asked with a cringe.
“YES and who is this, for the last time,” the new man said sternly.
“It’s Linda, sir,” Linda said sheepishly.
“Did you just call and tell my dad to pee on himself?” Gerald Jr. asked in
an unbelieving tone.
Christine covered her mouth with both hands and walked away very quickly.

Thanks for stopping over,

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Another excerpt from Dissipate!

“SHIT!” Jenny said loudly.
She got out of bed quickly and headed for the hall closet to get a towel to
soak it up with. When she got close to the bathroom she realized that the
shower was running. Cold fear ran over her.
“MOM!!” Jenny screamed as she ran full force into the bathroom.
“AHHHHH!!!” Linda screamed back.
Jenny ran right up and threw the shower curtain open. Her mother was
naked and very soapy. Jenny didn’t care all she wanted to do was save her.
She reached out and grabbed her mother by the arm and yanked with all of her
might. She lost her grip and her hands slid off of her mother’s arm. Linda not
sure what was going on and tried to fight Jenny off but couldn’t see for all the
soap in her eyes. The yank was still enough to catch her off balance. Linda
reached out to try and steady herself. All she managed to do was tangle herself
up in their cheap shower curtain. Linda fell out of the shower and made a soapy
splat sound when she hit the floor. Linda struggled to cover herself with the
mangled slick shower curtain.
“WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU!!” Linda yelled. She was
trying to look up at Jenny but her soapy hair was plastered to her face. With
a violent sweep of her hand, she shoved all of her hair out of her face.
“YOU’RE GOD DAMN CRAZY! What are you doing?” Linda said as
she tried to carefully pull herself up.
A large soapy puddle was forming around Linda’s feet and water was
spraying out of the shower because there was no curtain to hold it in.
“I’m not really sure what I’m doing,” Jenny said as she stared at her mother.
Jenny’s mouth was slightly open; she did not believe what she had just done.
Jenny thought that maybe some of the bubbles around her mother’s mouth
were not soap but maybe she had started foaming from anger.
“I really want to know what is going on with you,” Linda said extremely
“How about we shut the water off and then we can talk about it in the
kitchen?” Jenny suggested.
“I’m going to finish my shower first. I can’t walk into the kitchen like this,”
Linda said as she glanced down. She had rearranged the shower curtain so it
looked more like a toga. The shower curtain was an overly bright and
aggressive flower pattern. Linda kept wiping the bubbles from her face but it
was not helping and her eyes were now stinging terribly.
“Mom, please I really don’t think that you need to get back in the shower.
How about you just finish rinsing off with some of the water we saved in the
containers?” Jenny said hopefully.
“Let me get this straight, you just yanked me out of the shower bare-assed
naked to try and get me to bathe in a bucket,” Linda said. Her right eye was
now stinging so badly that it looked like she was just continuously winking at
Jenny was now having a hard time not smiling about the whole situation. She
yanked her very naked mother out of the shower. And her mom was wearing
their ugly shower curtain and it looked like she was hitting on her.
“Mom, I don’t know what came over me. I really have lost my mind,” Jenny
said and stifled a laugh.
“Are you laughing at me?” Linda said even angrier.

Thanks for stopping over,

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Wicked Wednesday!!

This isn't wicked at all! A.Marie you have my permission. But I can't think of a better way to spend the next 8 minutes of your life. I got tired just watching this!
Thanks for stopping over,
PS I won't get you answer your emails until next week.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Still missing you all! Here is a little bit more from the book.

“What are you coloring?” Jenny asked Kate after a while. From where she
was sitting, she could see Kate but her body was shielding the picture from
Kate turned and smiled at Jenny. And then went back to coloring. When
she finished, she stood up and walked over to Jenny still on the couch. Kate
grabbed her hand and tugged lightly. She wanted Jenny to follow her.
“How about we just sit here for a while?” Jenny suggested.
“No,” Kate said. Kate tugged her hand a little harder.
“Just sit here and cuddle me for a while,” Jenny said and patted the couch
with her other hand.
Kate let go of Jenny’s hand and started to walk away.
“Hey, stay here sweetie. You know what happened last time you went
down the hall,” Jenny called after Kate.
Kate ignored her and kept walking down the hall with her picture.
“Do you want something else from your bedroom?” Jenny said as she
hurriedly got up from the couch and followed Kate.
Kate stopped at the bathroom door.
“Honey, what do you want?” Jenny asked as she peered down at Kate.
Kate grabbed Jenny’s hand.
“What is it?’ Jenny asked.
Kate looked up at Jenny and stared into her eyes, she squeezed her hand
slightly. Kate walked into the bathroom a few steps and pulled Jenny in with
her. Jenny flipped the light switch on.
“Are you afraid?” Jenny asked still puzzled.
Kate looked back up at Jenny with fear in her eyes.
“Honey, you don’t need to be afraid of the bathroom. Nothing is going to
hurt you. The pipes are broken. I’m sure that someone is going to fix it real
soon. Okay, so you don’t have to be afraid any more,” Jenny said in her most
reassuring voice.
Kate gave Jenny a slight smile and stepped closer to the tub, never letting
go of Jenny’s hand. Jenny stepped closer to the tub. Jenny and Kate both stared
down the drain of the tub. Kate tugged at Jenny’s hand.
“What is it, sweetie?” Jenny asked. Kate handed Jenny the picture she had
colored. Jenny slowly looked at the picture. She caught her breathe and a cold
chill ran down her body when she realized what Kate had drawn. The picture
was of a poorly scribbled gray body, with large red eyes.
“OH, God,” Jenny said. She was starting to feel weak, the room was going

Thanks for stopping over,

Monday, October 12, 2009

Something Different

Since I'm gone this week I'm going to take a few excerpts from my book. Just my disclaimer, I am not the greatest author and my editing sucks but it still feels like Christmas when I hold the book. I hope you like it. And I miss you, guys. I'm sure that we are fighting like cats and dogs and I'm gripping about going all the way to Florida to fight. And that we should have saved the money and fought at home, sounds about right!

Just to make sense of it all
Linda is the mom
Jenny is Linda's daughter
Christine is Linda's best friend
Kate is Christine's daughter
That may have made it worse!!!

“Yes! You two are really being bad tonight. The noise is back in the
bathroom! I was under the sink putting the toys away and I could hear that noise
coming from the pipes under the sink. REMEMBER!” Jenny said.
“No, I don’t think I heard anything,” Christine answered.
“You don’t think at all. Ha ha,” Linda joked.
Jenny just shook her head. It was like listening to an old married couple
sometimes. Linda and Christine had even lost Kate’s interest. Kate got a few
baby dolls and went back to sitting on the couch and watching cartoons. Jenny
decided to see if she could hear the noise in the kitchen. Her mom and Christine
had finished cleaning up the kitchen and everything was back in place. Too bad
mom didn’t try so hard to keep our house as neat, Jenny thought. She
walked over to the sink. Jenny flipped on the faucet. No noise. She opened the
cabinet under the sink and listened. All she could hear was the rushing noise
of the draining water. She stood back up and shut the water off. She listened
again under the sink with the water off. Nothing.
She walked back to the front room where her mom and Christine had
managed to get on the couches. They were both sitting with their feet propped
up with full glasses of wine. They both seemed a little more sober. I guess
being snatched bald in a couple of spots will sober you up, Jenny thought.
“Mom, it’s not making that noise in the kitchen. What do you think it is?”
Jenny asked.
“Well, we decided that we aren’t plumbers, but we think that it might have
something to do with water pressure. It seems to keep happening when you
run a couple of faucets at a time. I think the whole city gets it water from large
wells, so maybe they are going dry. It is probably happening all over town,”
Linda suggested in a surprisingly sober tone.
Jenny just smiled and nodded. She went back to the bathroom to finish
cleaning up. She wasn’t done investigating yet. When she got back in the
bathroom she turned the sink back on. No noise from the faucet or under the
sink. She left the water running and walked over to the tub. She turned on the
tub faucet. No noise. She shut the tub faucet off and walked back over and shut
the sink off too.
So much for your theory, mom, Jenny thought to herself.
Jenny wiped off the bathroom sink with the hand towel and then hung it back
up. She walked over to the bathtub to drain the tub. She reached down and
pulled the plug out. The screeching high pitched whistle started as soon as the
plug left the tub. The noise reverberated through Jenny’s skull. Still stooped
over, she stared at the tub drain as she held her ears. Jenny watched as a red
eye peered back at her from the drain hole. Jenny blinked hard trying to clear
the vision from her eyes. She wasn’t seeing things, it was still there. A gray
bony transparent hand quickly reached for her. She was far enough back that
it just made a quick swipe at her and vanished back down the drain. Jenny
threw herself backward. The sound died down but over the screeching noise
she thought she heard someone screaming for help.
I’ve gone mad, Jenny thought to herself. Just then Christine and her mom
came in the bathroom. Jenny stood perfectly still and stared at the drain. All
color had left her face and she was taking shallow breaths.

Thanks for stopping by,

Friday, October 9, 2009

Friend's Friday

My booger for the day is ida_pai from Thailand. Her blog Travel Thailand has amazing pictures on it. You have to jump over there just to see it, it makes me really want to travel the globe. Have a great Friday, SonyaAnn

Thursday, October 8, 2009


Good news, we got a ReStore store. ReStore is run by Habitat for Humanity and collects and sells new and used building materials but I'm sure that you already knew this.
Anywho, remember our garage door debacle. I have managed to save up $750 to replace it but I have been dragging my feet on getting it or should I say dragging Den's feet since he is the one that is going to be doing it. It looks like the $750 might be on the low side for a new door. Sure, we could get a really cheap door but it looks like we will never escape this house so why not fix it up, sort of, nice. I luckily found the ReStore so that may be the way that we are going to go. We went and talked to the manager and he said if we can wait about a month they should be getting some in. They are reorganizing now so they have room for bigger things like the garage doors. Now all we have to do is hope and pray that the old door will make it a bit longer.
Thanks for coming to see me,

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Wicked Wednesday!!

I've gone too far, sorry to say but you knew it would happen. A.Marie you can go here, everyone else go here! Or to find out how truly perverse I really am, watch A.Marie's first and then the other one! I ruin everything.
Thanks for coming to see me,

Thank You

I wanted to say a huge thank you to Frances over at Looking forward to a more frugal 2009 for the wonderful Success Rice coupon! Yum and your butt is hot!

--> And a thank you to hatchette book group and Pam over at Mom's Muttering for the new book with the sexy cover!
I'm such a wiener!
Thanks for stopping over,

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

I have an idea

God save us all when I mutter those words! Can you take frugal too far? I'm thinking no but we shall see. As you know, we are going to FL soon. My original plan was to take two suitcases and just cram everything in there. The flaw to this plan was pointed out by dearest DJ. Where were all of the souvenirs going to go? Fine, we can bring three cases and I'll just gripe a bit, fine a lot! My clothes are bunking with Anna's clothes. Her and I fight about everything else in this world but when we pack for a trip, we are united. The boys are messy and we are neat and tidy with our clothes. And everything the boys have should fit in their suitcase. So on the way down there, there won't be much in one case. So I was thinking tons of snacks, the things that we never get. You know, cereal bowls, expensive granola and everything else that I deny my family because of the cost. Is that crazy? These are the things that kill our budget every time we travel. We have no self control when we have to stop and just grab a snack. But I will be paying $15 to bring a piece of luggage full of food to FL. I mean they do have food there and we could just bring less clothes and I could do more laundry. That would save space for the souvenirs. I also had a another idea, our luggage fits inside of each other. What if I put everything in one of the smaller pieces and then put it in the bigger piece. Would that cause a problem? As long as it doesn't go over the weight limit, what would it hurt? And I would only have to pay for three pieces on the way back. Any ideas? But I have to say that I think this is a good problem to have.
Thanks for stopping over,

Monday, October 5, 2009

Good News?

Some will dispute this but we are getting a health care clinic at Walmart and I'm so grateful. Most of the things that we need to go to the doctor for are infections, you know the fun stuff, sinuses and bronchitis. I don't know what the prices are going to be in Antioch but the only other Walmart clinic in IL starts at $40. Our HMO deductable is $30 so it really might be worth it to pay the extra $10 and not have all the hassle. Maybe we should just start looking at our insurance as major medical coverage only and then we are on our own with the little things. But then maybe that's what they want.
Thanks for stopping over,

Friday, October 2, 2009

Friend's Friday

So my Friday Friend is Slugmama over at Don't Read This; It's Boring! I can't believe all the money that she has saved this year. Check her out. And I hope that all of you have a great weekend.
Thanks for stopping by,

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Cheap Hors de ordervs

This is great! The next time I'm going to a party or a quick get together, I'm making this. I'm such a cheap cheat! Say that fast 10 times. Use old french bread, slice it and then toast it a bit. Mix chopped tomatoes, fresh basil and any kind of vinaigrette salad dressing together. And just spoon it on the bread. It looks like something from an expensive French restaurant but really its just your leftover stale bread. Do you have any cheats like this?
Thanks for coming to see me,