Category: SAHM

New Year Resolutions for Thrifty Momma Ramblings

thriftymommarabmlingsnewyearresolutions
On this New Year’s Eve, I would like to share my resolutions and goals for Thrifty Momma Ramblings in 2012.

1. Post regularly. I realize I haven’t contributed regularly for the last two years, but I have explained why as my life was so chaotic with Robbie and the anxiety I was battling. I have posted at least 2-3 articles each week since October of 2011. I plan to post at least 2-3 each for 2012. I might even post 4 some weeks but I promise to always post a minimum of 2 each week.

2. Host more giveaways. I plan to host at least one giveaway each month. I hope I can expand by having giveaways from other companies with great products and prizes.

3. Redesign Thrifty Momma Ramblings. I am hoping to have this accomplished by March of 2012. I am still not sure if I will move this blog to another server, but I want to give this blog a face lift. As much as I enjoy the fancy templates, I find they take much longer to load for people on slower servers. I think I will keep it simple but a custom design to help this blog stand out from the crowd.

4. Write guest articles for other blogs. I would love to write guest articles for other blogs. I would also like to feature more guest articles about frugal living, green living, gardening, diy projects, recipes, crafts, or just saving money in general. If you are interested in writing an article for this blog, then please contact me which can be found at the top of the page. I have a PR2 blog. I can’t afford to pay for guest articles, but I will gladly link back to your site with a short write-up for your blog. If you are interested in a guest post written by me, then please contact me.

5. Write articles to be published nationally. Along the same lines, I really want to work on writing articles for magazines and well known publications. I am trying to make a career as a writer. I love to research and share my experiences so it seems like a perfect fit for me. I hope to continue working on my BA after I graduate in May with my AS degree in General Studies. I will minor in English, Film Studies, and Web Graphics. I can apply this to what I’m already doing. I have some plans to submit thrifty tips, and my stories of battling anxiety and losing over 100 pounds to women’s magazines. I am also working on writing a book which shares my struggles of losing a baby to SMA, the major anxiety and depression I battled, and fighting so hard for my oldest son who has PDD-NOS, SPD, and Anxiety. You can read more about those struggles on Robbie’s Corner.

6. More marketing for Thrifty Momma Ramblings. Writing articles are great, but I need to really get more social. I would love any suggestions on any social networks that anyone uses and loves. I am looking into Blog Frog.

7. Raise my stats. I want at least a PR 3 blog before the end of 2012. I also would like to see 10,000 monthly visitors and 20,000 monthly page hits. I am already at 4K monthly visitors and 5K page hits. I think I can easily double this before the end of next year. I would really like to have 1K daily visitors but I want to baby step it. I don’t want to put the cart before the horse so I will take it one day at a time. I am planning to put out good quality back links to higher ranking blogs.

8. Publish Thrifty Momma Ramblings on Kindle. This one is pretty straight forward.

These resolutions are the main goals for my blog next year. These are some pretty lofty goals with the articles in national magazines and publications. I have already done things this year I never thought would materialize. I went back to college after 16 years and will graduate in May 2012! If I can accomplish a goal I talked about doing for the last 10-12 years, then I know I can accomplish writing or anything I set my mind on doing. I will discuss this more on The Cajun Blogger, but finishing my first semester with a 4.0 has really boosted my self-esteem. I have also found myself so to speak. I forgot how much I enjoyed reading and writing. Being back in college turned my brain back on. I am a mother, wife, friend, daughter, sister, and so on. I am more than those labels. I am Bonnie who has something to offer this world. My writing has given me a voice I forgot I had. It sounds a little cliche, but being on the other side nothing is impossible. Happy New Year from Thrifty Momma Ramblings and 2012 will be a great year!

Relax This Holiday Season


The holidays are fast approaching with Thanksgiving almost here. Thanksgiving is the signal that Christmas will be here in a month. Oh no! I still have to buy the turkey and trimmings, clean the house for the guests, then start decorating for Christmas, buy the presents, wrap them, and send out cards. Whoa! Slow down and take a deep breath. Do the opposite and take time for yourself this holiday season.

While this tidbit sounds great in theory, didn’t you just see all of the things I still have to do. Believe me I understand, but take your finger off the panic button and relax. I’m going to list a few tips on how to take time for yourself and learn how to relax which will make the holidays even more enjoyable.

Make a Plan:
Everyone needs a plan of action. Make a list of all the items you need to make for Thanksgiving dinner or Christmas dinner. Make a list of all the people you buy presents for or make treats. I realize I’m a little late planning this post as I wanted to write this last week, but this is still useful for Christmas. I always make a list of the people we buy presents for, and I always buy a couple of extra items for those last minute gifts. The plans are also good for cleaning or maybe with traveling.

Delegate:
I realize some of you are probably laughing, but I want you to delegate that list to others. Get your husband involved, the kids (if they are old enough), friends, and other family members. If someone asks if they can bring something for Thanksgiving, then tell them yes. It could be soft drinks or desserts. Maybe they make a wonderful side dish that everyone enjoys. You aren’t superwoman so stop trying to act like one.

Indulge Yourself:
I am very serious. As women we try so hard to please everyone else, that we neglect ourselves. I know I’m not useful to my family if I’m stressed out and snapping at them over trivial things. When I start to feel my breaking point, then I take a deep breathe and lock myself up away from everyone. You don’t have to make a dramatic exit, but just excuse yourself for a few minutes. I realize some moms don’t have as much time to get away, but honestly even five minutes of peace and quiet makes a huge difference in your attitude and well being. Below are some things I like to take time to do for myself.

  • Take a bubble bath. (I have occasionally brought a glass of wine to sip while soaking).
  • Do some reading. (It could be as simple as thumbing through your favorite magazine).
  • Do a craft. (If this truly relaxes you then go for it).
  • Enjoy a glass of wine or beer by yourself. (Maybe a hot cup of tea or hot chocolate instead).
  • Pray or meditate. (I know I feel more at peace after saying a prayer or two).
  • Eat a piece of chocolate. (Seriously I love a piece of dark chocolate and just savoring it).
  • Go for a walk. (This really helps to clear your head).
  • Exercise or dance. (Along the same lines but it really does help to soothe frazzled nerves).
  • Listen to music. (I even do this while taking a hot bubble bath).

I think you get the idea. There are times I just lock myself up in my room for a few minutes. My latest guilty pleasure has been writing. I find it really enjoyable to put my thoughts down on paper. It has proven to be quite therapeutic and relaxing for me. Please take some time for yourself this holiday season. A few minutes to yourself daily can make quite the difference in your attitude.

Planning my Fall Garden

One of the benefits in living a sub-tropical climate is that I can grow vegetables when most of the country is buried under snow. I can grow food year round which helps my food bill plus I am outside in fresh air. I haven’t actually had much of a chance to start planting since it’s rained almost every day for the last two weeks. I’m expanding a little more for the fall season, but not too much so it’s overwhelming. I bought my seeds for baby spinach, green onions, and two variety packs of lettuce. I made sure one variety pack is slow to bolt since we usually have spring weather in late February. My father-in-law is giving me transplants of cabbage and broccoli.

I was very pleased with how well my garden did this past year. I had more than enough cucumbers which I used to make pickles. It was a big hit with our family. I want to learn how to can so I can give dill pickles as gifts. I decided to stagger the seeds so I don’t get so overwhelmed with everything wanting to harvest near the same time. This will be really helpful with the lettuce, cabbage, and spinach plants. My husband is really looking forward to the lettuce since he likes to eat salads in the morning for breakfast. If you live in a snowy climate then use your winter to make gardening plans and looking at seeds.

TMR Frugal Living Tip #34

Today’s thrifty living tip is make double or triple batches when cooking. You can’t always do this since some foods don’t freeze. But there are many dishes that you can make at least a double batch of while cooking. It will save you lots of time and money. There are nights when you don’t feel like cooking. No problem since you can take something out that morning, let it thaw during the day, and just pop in the oven or microwave that evening. There will be less dishes to do as well which is an added bonus.

Small Changes Add Up to a Big Change

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I wasn’t always very frugal, and I was a spendthrift a few years ago. I know it’s horrible, but I wanted to be at home with my son, so I had to change. It was easier for my husband since he grew up frugal. I learned a lot of my skills from his family. The first thing we did was to consolidate debt to make one payment per month. That was only one small part of the change.

There are thousands of little ways to save money. Turning off lights when you aren’t in that room. I clip coupons and combine them with sales and rebates. I switched to store brands on most of the things we eat or use like toilet paper. I also do many other small things to save money. These little small changes will add up to much bigger savings in time. You have to start slowly if you want to it to be a permanent change.

If you are living paycheck to paycheck then debt consolidation is a great way to free up extra money for debt relief. BillsIQ is a great online site that has many tools and articles. Everyone that needs debt help should check out this great site.

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Back to School Means Supplies

My son went back to school last week. I had to buy the usual school supplies and school uniforms. That also meant I had to had to label them. I really wished I had a DYMO Labelmaker. I had so much trouble writing his name in small letters using a marker. The scissors were the hardest one to label. The writing could smear if not careful. Having a label maker could have saved me so much time and frustration. These labels look so much nicer plus no smearing.

I could even use this handy little label maker around my house. I hate having items in plastic containers, and I don’t always remember what I have stored inside. I don’t want to write on them so this label maker would be the perfect solution. I would also love to use this for organizing my pictures. The boxes are fabric so I can’t write on the outside. I can also use this to keep my files more organized. I would really love to color code it all with medical documents, tax information, and old bills. I can really see this great machine being used for all sorts of organization around the house. This will allow me to have more time to spend with my family.

TMR Frugal Living Tip #17

Today’s thrifty tip is to clean a microwave using vinegar. I pour half water and vinegar in a bowl which I then put inside the microwave. Turn it on long enough to bring to a boil. I usually do 2-3 minutes. It depends on how high and your microwave. The steam loosens food particles and deordorizes. This will be hot so be careful and just wipe clean. I do use the same mixture in the bowl. Then I pour the rest down the drain with the baking soda method I posted before.