Thursday, March 19, 2015

Menu Plan for the Week (March 16)

The menu plan will be a little different around here for the next 21 days as Tyler is doing a Daniel Fast (no meat, no dairy, no sugar, and no leavened bread) and the rest of us are doing a modified Daniel Fast of no sugar and also giving up some forms of entertainment.

I have tried to plan meals that will not make things any harder on Tyler (than they already will be) but since the kid loves to eat I'm not sure that is possible.

Monday: March 16
Breakfast: Peach Smoothies
Lunch: Chicken Nuggets, Yogurt, French Fries
Dinner: Taco Ring, Ranch Salsa Dip

Tuesday: March 17
DISNEY DAY! We will be eating at the park

Wednesday: March 18
Breakfast: Peach/Banana Smoothies
Lunch: Pizza, Salad
Dinner: Slow Cooker Sweet and Sour Chicken, Fried Rice

Thursday: March 19
Breakfast: Eggs, Toast
Lunch: Hot Dogs, Fresh Fruit, Pretzels
Dinner: The Best Lasagna Ever, Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuits, Salad

Friday: March 20
Breakfast: Peach Smoothies
Lunch: Macaroni and Cheese, Cheese Curls, Applesauce
Dinner: World's Best Burger, Homemade Cornbread Salad, Oven Fries

Saturday: March 21
Breakfast: Eggs, Toast
Lunch: Sandwiches, Chips, Fresh Fruit
Dinner: Hawaiian Fried Rice, 90 Minute Rolls  

Monday, March 16, 2015

Goals Update from March 9

Even though I kept my goal list small last week, I was still not able to accomplish it all!

Here is what I was able to get done, try not to be as disappointed in me as I am in myself.

Get all the laundry done including washing the master bedding
Didn't even come close to getting all of the laundry done! And so I am starting this week way behind! I hate when that happens. And not only am I behind but I am going to be out of the house for 1 1/2 days this week so that cuts down on the time I will actually have to do laundry. 

Make a loaf of bread, granola bars, cinnamon rolls, and my birthday cake
I did make a loaf of homemade bread (and now I need to make another one) but I didn't get any of the other things made. And of course with the no sweet fast our family is on I won't be making them for at least 21 days! 

Plan next weeks menu, make a grocery list, grocery shop at home, and get to the stores before Monday
 I did get my menu planned and even managed to get to all 3 stores (Aldi, Sam's Club, and Wal-Mart). There were only 3 things that I was not able to get but Micah said he would run to the store for me on his way home one day this week so I don't have to worry about going back out.

Delaney's lesson plans and folders ready to go for next week, would love to get two weeks worth done and ready but I am not going to set myself up for failure.
I actually did get two weeks of folders done and lessons planned! I am so very happy about this! Of course with my goal of getting more than 5 days of school done in a week the two weeks worth of lessons plans will not actually last me two weeks. UUGGHH!

Goals for the Week (March 16)

I have a pretty busy week this week and some unique challenges to face too.

My oldest son is going to be doing a 21 day Daniel fast (basically no meat, no sugar, no dairy, no leavened breads) so I will be cooking separate meals for him. The rest of us have decided to do a modified Daniel's fast in that we are just going to eliminate sugar from our diet for the next 21 days. However, since we are not doing a full Daniel's fast we are also fasting other things (Movies, TV, and different forms of entertainment).

Also, we are going to Disney on Tuesday to meet up with some of Tyler's friends from Ohio. Due to the fact that I have given myself this crazy goal of finishing up Delaney's school year in August (so she can be finished when we move in September) taking a day off in the middle of the week has me a bit stressed out. 

So of course my main goals this week are SCHOOL AND LAUNDRY!

We will not be doing any school on Tuesday and Friday is only a half day because Andrew has a High School writing class on Friday afternoon. So we need to finish up at least 5 (I sure would like to get 6 or 7) days of school done in 3 1/2 days!

And I really really need to focus on the laundry this week and get ALL of it done by Friday! It has been about 2 weeks since I have had all the laundry done and that is just not going to work much longer.

Does anyone else fall behind on laundry and then feel like you are never ever going to catch back up? Well, better go and switch the clothes instead of putting it off any longer or I'll never get finished.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Goals for the Week (March 9)

Here are my goals for this week (March 9).

Yes, I realize that it is Thursday and I'm just now posting my goals for the week. See Monday's post for an explanation as to why I am so far behind in my week.

Since I am so late in the week of getting my goals posted (and let's be honest here, even deciding what they are) I am going to keep my list very short! 4 things only!

  1. Get all the laundry done including washing the master bedding
  2. Make a loaf of bread, granola bars, cinnamon rolls, and my birthday cake
  3. Plan next weeks menu, make a grocery list, grocery shop at home, and get to the stores before Monday
  4. Delaney's lesson plans and folders ready to go for next week, would love to get two weeks worth done and ready but I am not going to set myself up for failure. 
I am hoping that by keeping my goals for this week simple I will be able to get a handle on things around here and will be able to start next week with bigger goals (or at least more goals).

Monday, March 9, 2015

Disaster Alert!

OH MY GOODNESS! My house is a disaster! I don't know that my house has been this BAD in years! I feel completely overwhelmed and like I'm drowning in CLUTTER!

Dining Room Table
Delaney started a new school year and I have been trying (unsuccessfully) to organize it and get it ready to go as she has been doing it. I have never done this before. I usually take a week or two and get all the folders organized and the books and lessons plans sorted before she actually starts the school year. But with building the house and moving, I have given myself the goal (impossible as it may be) to have her school year finished in August (that way all I have to worry about in September is moving). So we have not used our dining room table in over a week as it is literally covered from one end to the other with books, worksheets, lessons plans, and everything else that I have no place for right now! I cannot believe that I am going to post a picture of this mess but I really want to keep things real!

My kitchen is a disaster too! With Micah working two jobs (Publix Tuesday through Saturday and the Post Office Monday through Saturday) the weekend is the only time we are together as a family and so from Saturday afternoon till Monday morning I don't want to do anything (and that includes dishes) but spend time with him and the kids. While I certainly don't regret that decision when I'm making it, come Monday morning when I walk into the kitchen I'm thinking my plan was not such a great idea.

A Total Disaster
 My living room is a mess too! Last week (yes, I said last week) we opened Christmas presents from my mother (she lives in Ohio and tries to come to Florida in the Spring for Christmas, this year due to health reasons she is not going to be able to come so she mailed the gifts). Those Christmas presents are still in the living room, stacked up everywhere and anywhere. DISASTER!

It is Monday, which is when I start the laundry for the week and yep you guessed it I still have two loads of laundry from last week that never got done! UGGHH! I also still have the towels and whites in the laundry basket waiting to be folded and the lights are still in the dryer! DOUBLE UGGHH!

So as you can see I have my work cut out for me today. On top of trying to get this mess under control I still have to
  • fix breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • do school with Andrew and Delaney
  • grade Andrew and Delaney's school work 
So, what about you? How is your Monday going? And please someone tell me that I'm not the only one whose house looks like this on Monday?

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Financial Goals for March

Our Dream Home

All of the financial goals that my husband I set at the beginning of the year have changed, due to the picture above.

We were working on our debt snowball (and doing really well) but we have to put that on hold for now. Our builder requires $2500 cash (upfront) before they will break ground on a new house and we have to come to closing with an additional $2000. We also had to pay $500 cash for the processing of our mortgage.

These amounts alone where not going to stop our debt snowball, just slow it down a little. But our mortgage company is now asking us to come to closing with between 9,000 and 10,000 cash (for no other reason than to show that we can save up that amount of money). I guess since the housing market crash banks are wanting buyers to prove that they have lots of extra wiggle room when it comes to their income.

So the debt snowball is STOPPED (for now) and we will work (very hard) to save as much money as we possibly can between now and August. One of the first things that we did (to give ourselves some grace) is my husband took on a second job. He now works a full time job (as a letter-carrier for the USPS) and part time at Publix stocking shelves. His entire paycheck from Publix goes into the "House Fund"!

We have paid the $500 cash for the loan processing and put $1,000 down on the house (from money we had managed to save since the beginning of the year). We will be borrowing $2500 from Micah's 401K plan (it's considered a residential loan and so is payed back over 15 years and we are paying the money and the interest (1.3%) back to ourselves.

We have to come up with another 1500 dollars (500 in March, 500 in April, and the last 500 in May) to put down on the house. And then we will have to save ABOUT 7,000 by closing. It's going to be a little tight around here for the next few months! But oh so worth it!

Our goal for March is to pay the $500 toward the down payment and then to save an additional $300. I would love to save another $500 but I want to keep my goals reachable so that I am not discouraged at the end of the month.

So in total we hope to have $800 dollars put toward the house by the end of March! And of course still have paid all of our other bills too! 

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Our Dream Come True!

Our Dream Home

This is the house that my husband and are getting ready to build. This is "THE HOUSE"! It is our dream home! We are beyond excited and we are so thankful and grateful for the providing hand of God that is making this dream a reality! This a 4 bedroom, 3 bathroom house that is PERFECT for us. The boys will each have their own bedrooms and they will share a bathroom. And Delaney will have her own bedroom and her own bathroom.

Our Land

 This is the piece of land that we picked out. The lot is HUGE! And so there will be plenty of room for our "Someday" pool and we will still have some yard leftover. The pool is a few years down the road but it's nice to know that there will be plenty of room for it when the time comes.

Tile and Carpet
After we picked out the floor plan we wanted and the lot that the house would be built on we signed about 100 papers and then a few days later we headed off to the design center.
The house that we picked is at the very top of our budget (hey we are a family of 5 that needs some serious space) so we didn't have a lot of money to spend on extras. We did upgrade to a gourmet kitchen (be still my little cooking/baking heart) and we added an office instead of the three car garage.
We have lots of plans of upgrading to hard wood floors and granite counters at a later date. But for now the builder grade is just fine with us!

While I am most excited about my gourmet kitchen (double oven in the walls, tons of counter space, an island, and upgraded appliances) we spent the bulk of our money on the appliances and the island so we had to go builder grade on everything else. We have plans of white cabinets (IKEA), quarts counters, farmhouse sink, and hardwood floors someday. But for now, this is my kitchen. The wood is the cabinets, the dark gray is the counter tops and the floor tile is underneath the counter tops.

Bathroom Upgrades

Now we did actually spend some money in the bathrooms. My husband and I both agreed that if we were EVER going to upgrade the bathrooms it would need to be now! We knew that they would be so far down the priority list that we might never get to them. And so we spent the little bit of money that we had to upgrade all three bathrooms. The tile at the top of the picture will be our shower/tub tile, the black, gray, and white square tiles are the decorative wall tiles that will go around the tubs and the showers, the tiny white tile is the granite counters, and the large tile under the small white tile is our tile flooring.
These colors actually work out perfect for all the bathrooms. The master bathroom is Tiffany Blue, black and gray. Delaney's bathroom is pink, black, and gray. And the boys bathroom is black and gray.

We are not closing on the house until September (we do not want to break our lease) so the building process is going to be stalled for awhile. Micah and I are thinking they will break ground in late May or early June. Right now our house plans are at the architecture being drawn up and finalized. We are also in the last stages of loan approval (boy are there a lot of hoops to jump through on that one)! That will be another post for another day.

I am beyond excited for this phase, we have never been homeowners before, and to be building our dream home is such a God thing.

For those of you who have built a home any advice?! Would love to hear from those of you who have been there, done that, and SURVIVED!