Froggy Girl Designs

A glimpse into my daily life of crafting, frugal living, and being a mom!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Wearing the baby

Slings and babywearing are nothing new, they've been around for as long as women have been having babies. In recent years, they've seen a resurgence in popularity as more parents are practicing attachment parenting. I wouldn't necessarily put myself into that camp, although there are some aspects I do practice. We do co-sleep with Wyatt the majority of the time, I am successfully breastfeeding (was unable to with my other boys for a myriad of reasons), and I am trying to find instructions to sew a basic ring sling to wear Wyatt in. I had one with Alexander, but it was made for someone quite a bit taller/bigger than I am, and as I've recently learned, that makes a huge difference! Who woulda thunk it?

I picked out a gorgeous fabric for our sling, it's really fun and funky. One of the fabric coops I'm in on yahoo did a buy on rings for slings, so I picked up a few in random colors, and the turquoise matches our fabric perfectly! I'm excited to start work on this, I need to find an hour or two to sew on it uninterrupted (HA!), then I can show you the finished project!

Last night I got hit with insomnia about 3:30 am, my mind had visions of aprons and bibs. What a combo huh? I'm finally getting into the groove with the kids, so I can start being creative again. I "designed" an apron, it's very basic, but once I get the first one sewn up I'll post it on here, and the bib as well. I have alot of ideas brewing, now to put them into action! I'll add fabric pictures here in a bit so you can see how cool it is!

Edited to add the pic! This has a little bit of sparkle on the gold areas for depth, it is so gorgeous!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Finding the deals at a Scratch N Dent

While reading The Complete Tightwad Gazette, there is one article that talks about buying groceries at your local scratch n dent/salvage goods food store. Prior to living in California, I had never heard of stores like that. Out there we had a store called Grocery Outlet, with really good prices, and things I didn't appreciate at the time. I was a young newlywed, far from home and family, and while I tried to spend as little as possible, I didn't really GET IT. Well, now I do. I'm older and wiser, and while still a newlywed (again lol), stretching the pennies makes more sense.

When we lived in Southern Indiana, there was a store we drove by occasionally that said something about Discount Merchandise outside. We always said we needed to check it out sometime and kept forgetting. It was a very low profile building, looked kind of like a small warehouse of some sort. One day we finally stopped by. I was in grocery geek heaven! LOL! We found Capri Suns for .10 a piece (which we hardly ever buy because they're so expensive and not that healthy), packages of yeast for .10 a piece, whole wheat/self rising/cornmeal flour for .25 a bag, spices for .50 a jar, salad dressings for .25 each. Seriously was amazing. Deals on cereal are not so good, i can do better with coupons, same with canned goods. Although if we can find tuna there it is .33 a can, as opposed to the .50 a can which is my best price at the regular grocery store. This store is 30 minutes south of us now, but I still try and plan a trip down that way once or twice a month, to see what they have since things are rather hit and miss. I combine those trips with trips to Walgreens, Kmart, Target, etc. which we don't have real close to the house.

When we first moved into this house, it had no appliances. Not really a problem since we had a brand new refrigerator from our previous house, plus the washer and dryer and freezer. The only problem was the stove. Our old house was gas, this one is electric (BLAH but that's a whole different issue lol). So we decided to forgo the stove until we found one cheaply enough to buy, the kids were on vacation with my parents at the time so we relied on the microwave alot. Well, through the beauty of freecycle we were offered a very nice electric stove, all we had to do was go pick it up. The location was VERY out of the way, located out in the sticks, but it was a gorgeous drive. On the way there, I spotted a sign for another discount grocery store in Amish country and made note to check it out sometime.

A few weeks ago Bobby was out of town on military duty for a few days, so I decided to pack up the munchkins and check that place out. It is Amish run, and is about 30 minutes away. It is quite a bit smaller than the previously mentioned store, and overall their prices are higher than the one we visited before. Their prices on cereal are better (they had 10 boxes of Apple Cinnamon Cheerios for $10), and we also purchased bags of Nilla wafers (out of the boxes 2/$1) and Townhouse crackers (also out of the boxes, 4/$1). Overall, not worth the gas it takes to drive that out of the way, but if we are passing by again we will definitely stop!

The point of this rambling post...check out your local options. Many areas have stores of this type, with great prices. Know your prices before you go, so you can spot a good deal when there is one. And if anyone else knows of more in the southern Indiana area, I'm always up to check them out!!!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Gaining a kid without gaining an ounce

While this method is not recommended it is possible lol.

My husband's sister has 2 boys. She was a teen mom, and hasn't quite grown out of her "wild" phase yet. Zach is the oldest, he's 11. Things at home aren't so great, so Bobby and I try and help out where we can without enabling mom too much. Zach has been saying for over a year that he wants to come and live with us, and we've always just played it off kind of, because of course Bobby doesn't want to alienate his sister completely. Well, we stopped up there (they live about 2 hours away) last weekend to show them Wyatt, and they'd moved again. This is the 6th house in the last few months, and we had a hard time tracking them down. We finally found them and discovered things have gotten worse than normal, and Zach had been begging his mom to find a way to get ahold of us (they have no phone or computer, anything like that) so he could come and stay for a bit. We decided to go ahead and bring him home with us for a few weeks, give everyone a break from each other and see what happens. Bobby and I have been discussing the whole situation since then, and I think we're going to broach the subject of taking custody of Zach next month when he's due to go back.

He is SUCH a good kid, and he's so smart! But, he is a victim of his environment, and without some major changes he'll end up in jail or worse, and we don't want to see that happen. So, we're taking our "trial run" with 5 kids, and we'll see how permanent this becomes!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

A new addition to our family!

No, I'm not pregnant again! (Oh man that would be WAY soon wow..nope, not pregnant lol). But, since the addition of Wyatt, and actually for the few months before, we have known that we need a mini van. Not want, NEED. Previously our vehicles were: my 1996 Chevy Cavalier which is a great car, it's been paid off for almost 5 years, insurance is minimal as is plating, and it's great on gas mileage (we've also had very minimal repairs on this!); my husband's 1995 Chevy Camaro, his baby (until the human one came along!), he just purchased it a little over a year ago and we're on track to pay it off by the end of the year, again, insurance isn't much nor plating; and a 1996 Dodge Dakota pickup truck (same as all the above re: plating etc, this is also paid off). Well, we've been looking around casually, without really LOOKING if you know what I mean, while waiting for our moving/baby/life from hell situation to settle down.

Last week Bobby had a few hours off from work in the MIDDLE OF THE DAY! so I packed up the kids and drove up to meet him at our favorite little hole in the wall Mexican restaurant. After we were done, he wanted to check out a van he'd seen on his way to meet us, so over we went. Well, suffice to say, 2 hours, a couple headaches and a couple signatures later...we have this:

Yup, my wonderful husband bought me a minivan! A 1998 Pontiac Montana. This is my mom's van fraternal twin, as hers is the same model, just a different color. I loved her van, so this was perfect, at a price we could NOT pass up. It runs like a dream and is in close to perfect condition. Life has been much easier since this baby came home! We took it to Detroit this last weekend, and we have an additional kid for at least the remainder of the summer (stories on both coming up!), so it's been wonderful. Thank you hubby for making my life a bit easier!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

What? All the cool people sit sideways!

Wyatt at 3 weeks old. He's getting so BIG!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

In our backyard

As you know, we moved at the beginning of June for many reasons. One being, we found a house that we thought was perfect for us to stay in until our house is built in a few years. This house sits on about 2 acres of land, 4 bedrooms, 5 1/2 bathrooms (it was a hotel when it was originally built), 2 living rooms, etc. etc. Across the street is a massive cornfield, to the back and sides is woods. And we're 30 seconds from the interstate. Seriously, the on/off ramp is the next "street" over. With that being said, you cannot tell when you look around that the interstate is anywhere around, occassionally we'll hear some traffic, but the trees do an excellent job of blocking that noise. It is so quiet, and peaceful, we adore it. We are renting here for an insanely low amount for this great place, but foresee no "landlord issues" for many reasons.

This afternoon as I was going about my duties in the house, my oldest two children called from their room where they were not so quietly playing to "Come here Mommy! HURRY!!!". I did, and they wanted to show me this:

How awesome is this?! We have seen the mother and one fawn a few times in the front yard or around the side, but we hadn't seen the second fawn. This was taken out my kids bedroom window, and they were less than 15 feet away. So beautiful! While we were watching, one of the fawns got a bit curious about us, and came quite a bit closer.

Ignore the huge propane tank in the background! We have also seen a fox on our property which one of our cats is quite determined to chase. Funnily enough, the fox which is a good 10 times her size runs away from her. Quite funny! This is the wildlife I love to see, but could definitely do without the daddy long legs, spiders, wasps, and various other creepy crawlies around here. My husband frequently hears me yell to come and kill something lol. We have decided firmly that we are "country people" and can't wait until our house out in the boonies is done!

Monday, July 09, 2007

Target Deals This Week

Well, Walgreens doesn't have any amazing stand out deals for me this week, so I'm going to give you the Target deals I'm working on this week. As many people do not know, Target puts coupons on their website every week or so that are generally good for about a month, which are good on food items. You don't have a Supertarget you say? No worries! These will be accepted at any Target which carries the appropriate items. I don't have a SuperTarget within an hour of me (Louisville, KY does NOT have a wierd is that?), so I rely on regular Targets. Some lovely souls have created what are known as coupon generators for these coupons. The one I always use is The Target Coupon Generator. This has all of the currently valid Target coupons on one page, you click on whichever coupon you would like multiple copies of, it will ask how many you want, then you click Generate. They then place multiple copies of that coupon on a page for you to print all at once. Easy as can be!

Now, onto the deals for this week. There is a coupon on the generator for $1 off of any Oscar Meyer product. This includes everything from Lunchables, to lunch meat, to hotdogs. At my Target the hot dogs are $1.22 a package, so .22 after this coupon. I'll be stocking up for sure for Mattie who loves his hot dogs!

The next deal is for Gerber baby food. The coupon is for $1 off of any 2 Gerber food items, this includes everything from jarred baby food, to cereal, to Gerber Graduates. The jarred food at my store runs around .55 a jar, so with the Target coupon, each jar will be .05. I have to keep reminding myself that I have another one who will eat baby food eventually, so I need to stock up lol. Now, you can also use manufacturer's coupons in conjunction with the Target coupons (this is their corporate policy, most Target's know this, but some have issues), so if you have any coupons for Gerber items, use those as well, for totally free items, and in some instances receive overage towards your other items. As you can see, right now he thinks his arm is one of the yummiest things around, but that will soon change! So all you mommas of babies and toddlers go save yourself some money!

PS...this picture was taken at 3am about 2 weeks ago, after hours of being awake for no good reason which is why he looks like an extremely tired man lol. I can't believe he's almost a month old already!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

June Contest Wins and Point Redemptions

Most days I spend at least 30 minutes or so doing online instant win games, and whatever time I can get doing surveys, etc. The wins and surveys do not bring in a fat second income or anything, but the little extras are nice! If anyone would like referrals to any of the places I use for surveys and the like, please just shoot me an email or a comment!

  • Free 20 oz. Coke product coupon (
  • $10 Cash (survey)
  • $5 Amazon GC (Survey)
  • $10 Amazon GC (Survey)
  • Free Blockbuster movie rental (


  • Kodak picture stickers (Disney rewards instant win)
  • Surf's Up Movie Poster
  • Shutterfly Greeting Card
  • 5 Music Downloads
  • 2 Chicago Tribune Sunday Papers
  • Shutterfly Photo Book (perfect timing, we're going to use it for Wyatt's pictures)
  • Transformers Movie Poster
  • Movie Cash Gift Certificate
  • 2 NBA Posters

As you can see, not a whole lot, but for not a lot of effort it's fun! Although after these wins, my kids' rooms are going to be papered in posters! LOL!

Sunday, July 01, 2007

My June Freebies

I've decided to keep myself motivated to use coupons, freecycle, and sales by keeping track each month of all items I receive free. I also am keeping a seperate list of items I win in contests I enter, such as instant wins, etc. This list is my freebies for the month of June. Some you may recognize from my Walgreen's post, others I'll give a brief recap of the "deal".

  • New with tags Winnie The Pooh outfit for Wyatt (given to me at a yardsale)
  • 2 pairs of New Balance tennis shoes for Jacob (yardsale free box)
  • 1 package of Meijer brand diapers (coupon from hospital)
  • 1 package Meijer onesies (coupon from hospital)
  • 10 large packs of Kotex pads (Walgreen's deal a few weeks ago)
  • 18 boxes Glucerna cereal (Catalina deal at Walgreen's for the month of June, ended yesterday)
  • 2 packages of Kotex tampons (same Walgreen's deal as above)
  • 12 gallons of milk (Kroger sale & Catalina print outs, also ended yesterday)
  • 2 large packages of Kotex pantiliners (Walgreen's again)
  • 22 bottles Walgreen's acetaminophen
  • 28 6 packs of Boost Nutrition drinks
  • 13 packages of Top Ramen (overage from Walgreen's catalinas)
  • 2 packages of Ziploc Steam N Fresh bags (BzzAgent campaign-post coming soon!)
  • 8 4 packs of Musselman's Applesauce cups (overage from Boost coupons at Walgreen's)
  • 2 cans of Enfamil Ready To Feed formula (Formula checks)
  • 1 package of Sharpies (overage at Walgreen's again)
  • 1 package of hamburger buns (overage from milk catalina's at Kroger)
  • 7 packages of shredded cheese (milk overage again)
  • 3 TV Guides & a 10 week subscription to TV Guide (another bzzagent campaign)

Overall, a pretty good month. Not my best by far, but the Boost alone is $168 worth of merchandise that I paid tax only on. Those will go most likely to my grandfather (dropped some off with him yesterday), or to a local cancer center. Looking forward to seeing what deals July will bring!