Monday, October 31, 2011

New Look

What is frugal living?

To me it's living within or below your means.

All of our means are different and with time it changes. We've had our ups and downs financially as most families do.

As you can tell our family has had some major changes. We recently bought our dream home and property.

Without frugal living for many years it wouldn't have been possible.

It's important to make goals and know where your headed. For our family a country home was important. We scrimped and saved and did it with a lot of hard work and saving.

I've had people say you can't be frugal Jen living in that house.

My answer, yes I can. I'm still as frugal as ever. I'd love to decorate the house immediately with all new things but I can't.

We live on a strict budget and we don't live beyond our means.

Frugal is a way of life. You can make it drab and boring or your can make it fabulous and an adventure.

Cheers to new adventures!

Fall Fun

Life with 4 kids is seldom boring. Mostly we're busy going from one activity to another or working on the property.

Each Tuesday we make a trip into our old town for gymnastics and lunch with Daddy. Here's my little gymnast. Will's turned into a pumpkin head.
We spent or family night out at our barn. We carved pumpkins and hung out by the fire.

This is our 2,400 sq ft bonus building/barn. It could be a charming house. We laugh and say it's where we will live when we get old. One of the kids can move into the main house.

We have big plans to finish it out for a guest room, home office, shop and entertaining space. Our favorite part is the huge deck out front which overlooks our pond.

Our little country girl Caroline.

It's not Texas if we're not playing baseball. In between watching the Rangers world series games we were watching our favorite ball player. His nickname is "homerun Will". My dude has some serious skills. Since we moved to an ultra competitive city he's improving daily. I love to see the joy in his face while he plays.

I've fallen in love with drinking out of mason jars. I ditched the old glass cups.

I don't know what happened to my city husband but he's seriously wanting to buy a big tractor. He was checking them out at the state fair. As you can see Will thinks it's a good idea. We have a new search on Craigslist for tractors.

Our open living room and catwalk have a sniper you have to be careful of. He's a sharp shooter with a nerf gun. I know he's coming if I hear screaming girls.

We are enjoying out time at our new home. It's a dream come true to have some land to roam.

Honestly the first couple months I thought.... what have we done, I want to go home. After time I'm loving it. I don't do well with change but now I pull up and breathe a sigh of relief, I'm home.

We laugh we still have a home in the "city". Our old home didn't sell during the selling season so we put it up for renter. We have renters in until the end of the school year. Not sure if we will sell or continue renting it out. Rentals are in high demand so the extra $$ is nice.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Dining Room Progress

I've been so busy I've neglected the blog a bit.

I underestimated the amount of time I would be busy.

This is our dining room taken this morning. I'm slowly picking out decor.

Something funny has happened to me, I actually like the gold accents.

Call me 90's Jen but I really like it. A year ago I would spray paint in Oil Rubbed Bronze.

I see some tall tablescaping in the future too.

We've had the hardwood floors refinished twice, yep twice.

Seems our inlay was week and required some replacement. Didn't want anyone stepping through our floors.

You can see in the below photo the floors before we did the 1st round. The wood was a little light for our taste.

We've been busy.

Gone is the wall paper.

We put white bead board and had the walls textured to match the rest of the house.

The floors got a dark refinishing.

This is my favorite part the chunky molding.

It's been easy to get overwhelmed because there is so much to do. Our last house was completely done decorating wise.

It's exciting and fun to pick out new items although I'm a little impatient because I can't buy it all at once.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Grocery Challenge

I've done a little experiment with grocery shopping.

Over the past couple years I've gone to Wally World (wal-mart). I started to wonder what was up when my grocery bill gradually went up. It quickly got to the point of out of control.

Each time I visit I have to go from one side of the store to the other.... that's where they get you.

I was picking up candles, craft items, kids clothing... etc.

My bill in the meantime had gone up almost $100 a week. Out of control I tell ya!

So, after we moved I visited the new Wally World, same deal.

Then I decided to go back to the grocery store get a saver card and all.

In 2 weeks my grocery bill is down $75 a week and I'm getting more food. Yes some items are more expensive but I'm saving money. I've also noticed the high quality of meats and produce.

I'm saying so long farewell to my weekly trips to Wally World! Hello little ole small town Brookshires.

P.S. I love that I get help out to the car!

Coming soon, back to coupon Frugal Jen.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Menu Monday

I forgot what a schedule was like...

We're back on Menu Monday.

Country living doesn't mean no evening activities it just means we drive futher to get there. However I LOVE the drive. It's beautiful driving in rural areas with no traffic. We see many sunsets and beautiful bluff views.

Ok on to food:

Monday: Grilled Burritos (yeah a night at home!)

Tuesday: Frozen Pizza (baseball practice)

Wednesday: Crock Pot Brisket, come and go (youth group)

Thursday: Leftover BBQ (Dance and baseball practice)

Friday: Burgers at home with a movie night... relax from the busy week

Gotta share some decorating and I need ideas. This is our casual dining off the kitchen. I'm looking for fabric for a valance.

I'm stuck on what to do on the back wall. I don't like the mirror it doesn't seem to go there. I'm looking for a country idea. Any ideas?

This is our oldest daughter who seems to be missing from blog posts. I'm so proud of her. She's adjusted great from the move. She's got a great group of new friends. This past weekend she went to homecoming, the dance and also had a slumber party with new friends. She's a busy girl.