Thursday, September 29, 2016

Grocery Shopping This Week

Wednesday is my main shopping day. My official 2016 weekly grocery budget is $100/wk for 4 people (2 adults, 2 teens) but I really aim to spend $50 or less.

This week was the first shopping trip that counts for October since most of my week will take place in that month and thus will be consumed then.  Greg is still away at his parents and we don't know when he's coming back, and I decided to buy few things this week. However this plan was derailed when I saw the excellent Cartwheel offer for fresh chicken at SuperTarget,  a great combination of sales, store and manufacturer coupons and ECBs  on cereal at CVS, butternut squashes at Aldi, and when Save A Lot finally got pumpkins!  Still, with the help of my CVS gift card and some restraint, I think I did OK :)

Let's see how I did!

Budget for the week: $100.00
Total OOP: $29.10
Money left in budget: $70.90

Baking Supplies: $0.00 OOP

  • None needed

Beverages: $0.00 OOP

  • None needed

Breads/Baked Goods: $0.75 OOP
  • 1 loaf white bread (Aldi) @ $0.85 and received $0.10 back from MobiSave so $0.75

Cereals: minus $1.86 OOP and received $3.00 in ExtraCare Bucks
  • 1 box Crispy Rice (Aldi) @ $1.39
  • 2 boxes Lucky Charms, 2 boxes Reese's Puffs and 2 boxes Cookie Crisp (CVS), on sale @ $1.99 each, minus $1.00/3 digital store coupon, $3.00 in manufacturer coupons and $1.50 redemption of ECB from previous trip = $6.44 but FREE thanks to my CVS gift card, earned via our Amex Rewards program.  I also received $0.25 back from Ibotta, $1.50 back from Checkout 51 and I will receive $1.50 back from SavingStar so $3.25 MONEYMAKER!

Dairy: $1.34 OOP
  • 1 gallon whole milk (CVS), on sale @ $2.79 but FREE thanks to my CVS gift card, earned via our Amex Rewards program, and received $0.10 back from MobiSave and $0.25 back from Ibotta so $0.35 MONEYMAKER.
  • 1 package American cheese slices (Aldi) @ $1.69

Dry/Pantry/Freezer Goods: $0.00 OOP 
  • None needed
Produce/Juice: $18.37
  1. The pumpkins are being used as indoor seasonal decorations right now and eventually will be cooked, puréed, frozen, and turned into pumpkin bread and pumpkin soup.
  2. The butternut squashes will last forever on my kitchen counter but eventually will be turned into delicious butternut squash soup.
  3. I decided not to buy any berries this week as the Target strawberries that were on sale weren't Driscoll's and the raspberries were too expensive.
  4. I still had corn on the cob in my fridge and I have frozen and canned vegetables so I restrained on buying too much.
  • 2.09 lbs bananas (Target), on sale @ $0.57/lb, minus 25% Cartwheel offer and the 10 cent credit for using 2 bags.  Then I received $0.10 back from MobiSave and $0.25 back from Ibotta = $0.44
  • 7.42 lbs butternut squash (Aldi) @ $1.69 each squash (I bought 2) = $3.38
  • 6 lbs gala apples (Aldi) on sale at $1.69 each 3-lb bag = $3.38 and received $0.10 back from MobiSave = $3.28
  • 1 cucumber (Aldi) @ $0.59 and received $0.25 back from Checkout 51 = $0.34
  • 4 lbs grapes (Aldi), on sale @ $0.79/lb = $3.16
  • 1 bag spinach (Aldi) @ $1.79
  • 2 pumpkins (Save A Lot), on sale @ $2.99 each = $5.98

Proteins: $8.00 OOP
  1. The ground chicken wasn't on my list but it was a good price after all discounts and coupons.  I froze 3 packages and the 4th was turned into chicken burgers that we had last night for dinner.
  2. My son is welcoming bologna for his lunches. He loves that stuff (ugh, gross!).
  • 1 package bologna (Aldi) @ $0.95
  • 4 packages Gold'n Plump ground chicken (Target) @ $3.99 each, minus 40% Cartwheel offer, minus  (4) $1.50/1 coupons from Gold'n Plump e-club = $0.89 each so $3.56
  • 1 lb Black Forest turkey (Aldi) @ $3.49

Snacks: $2.50 OOP

  1. The milk chocolate bar is what my daughter bought herself when I told her she could charge a snack when she stopped by Aldi for me to get the turkey that I had forgotten to buy :)
  2. I resisted asking the cashier for a 50% discount on baked goods at Save A Lot when their sell-by date warranted it. Instead I left them for other customers since I have pumpkin bread in the freezer and I also need to bake banana muffins with the brown bananas that I have at home.

  • 1 bar Chocoeur milk chocolate (Aldi) @ $1.81 after tax
  • 1 bag oyster crackers (Aldi) @ $0.69

Did you get any great deals at the grocery store this week?  Please link up or share your finds in the comments :)

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Day of Reckoning (and Shopping!) ~ Wednesday 9/28/16

When I went off my diet for a week (and a half...), I knew I'd probably put on weight.  I was starved so I ate. I didn't feel that I pigged out because I didn't scarf down cheesecake and I had a salad instead of fries with my McDonald's burger. BUT.  Oh, I really don't want to say this.  I got on the scale this morning and I've put on (drum roll...) 4 lbs.  FOUR FREAKING POUNDS.  In a week and a half!  Arrgh.  So if this isn't a wake-up call, I don't know what is.

The depressing part (if that wasn't depressing enough) is, once again, the realization that if I take my eye off the prize for just one second, for the rest of my life, by either indulging a little or not exercising at all, my weight will shoot right back up.  I don't think there'll be another ramping up period like in my 30s when it took me several months for the weight to start creeping up again. Oh no. It's like my body suddenly said "hey!  look at all those empty cellulite cells! Let's fill them back up again!  Oh nom, nom, nom" and I'm almost back to square one.

So today needs to be a new beginning. I have got to get a handle on myself. Of course, today is also Shopping Day. Well, at least, it'll keep me busy!

I spoke with Greg last night.  He thinks he might be able to come back Sunday or Monday. His dad is better in some ways and worse in others, but very cogent when he talks about subjects that interest him and Greg thinks, like the nurse, that he'll be with us for weeks, if not months, yet.  So he and his sister will get together tomorrow to nail down funeral details and wishes with their dad, and then he'll see about booking his trip back.

My mom, on the other hand, got kitten fever from me, presumably, and adopted a kitten yesterday. I don't think she thought this through as she has a small dog who is used to being the king of the house and already yelps at all the other animals passing by the house.  She emailed me this morning that she and my stepdad didn't sleep a wink because the dog was very upset and the kitten (whom she separated from its siblings and then put in a room by itself last night) is afraid and won't come out from its hiding place but meowed all night too. She said she was giving it a few days but if things didn't improve fast, she'd have to give the kitten back. Her house is pretty much made of cardboard so sounds carry very easily from room to room so I can only imagine the ruckus in there last night!  I gave her some advice but with her dog, it might have been better to get a larger cat that can defend itself because she said she was afraid that the dog might hurt the kitten.  And did I mention that she's almost never home?  Tsk, tsk, mom.  I'm hoping I can call her on Sunday afternoon to check in on her.

My daughter has her interview with Pet Supermarket this afternoon. I hope it does well!

So my To Do List for today consists of 2 main things (well, three):
  1. Restart my diet
  2. Exercise
  3. Go shopping
It shouldn't be so hard!  For kicks and to keep me somewhat productive, here is my full...

To Do List:
  • Crafty/Creative:
    • Finish painting squirrel sign and assemble it
    • Make a lightbox to take better pictures
    • Melt down old candles and make into new ones
    • Make "No Soliciting" sign for front door and another one for the other front door (we have two) - I really need to do this or buy one because I had a bag (a whole bag!) of political pamphlets hanging from my door knob yesterday.  I think I'm also going to add "and don't leave your literature either, I'll vote for the other party if you do!"
  • Cleaning/Decluttering:
    • Dust the bedrooms (including son's fan) - in progress
    • Declutter linen closet
    • Clean kitchen cabinets - Partly done
    • Declutter the top of the fridge
    • Mend items in mending basket (add Greg's hat)
    • Declutter shelves over printer stand 
    • Declutter storage bench 
    • Clean the fridge
    • Declutter gardening supplies chest
    • Defrost the freezer - scrapped off the top of the ice layer. Will need to defrost the whole thing.
    • Sweep/vacuum downstairs bathroom
    • Do the dishes (Tuesday and Wednesday) - Done
    • Fold the laundry
    • Put the laundry away
    • Clean window over the kitchen sink
    • Clean window in living room with finger marks
    • Clean sliding door windows
    • Clean entry room front windows
    • Put up pictures on Art Room's walls
    • Collect recycling and take it down to curb - Done
  • Cooking/Baking/Preserving:
    • Bake banana chocolate chip muffins
    • Defrost meat for tonight - no need I'll make ground chicken burgers
  • Education
    • Follow up with son about driving handbook studying
    • Follow up with son about Optimist Club essay 
    • Start watching Photography lectures online (see email)
  • Entertainment
    • Plan an outing to Leu Botanical gardens or Bok Tower Gardens
    • Sign up for ranger hikes in local parks
    • Go for a walk with my camera - little lake near Downtown Clermont
  • Errands:
    • Take items to the dump
    • Pick up cat food from vet's (Wednesday) - Done
    • Drop off pet coupons at SLAL thrift store
    • Drop off Labels for Education at elementary school
  • Gardening/outdoors:
    • Transplant ferns into bare patch in front lawn to make shady planter
    • Scrub patio pavers with bleach to remove mildew (this might have to wait until the months when it's not quite so hot!)
    • Pull the raspberries and add roses in pots in their place
    • Add mulch to the vegetable garden once I have replaced the broken self-watering bins
    • Pull unwanted plants from center "planter" in the backyard, add soil, plant flowers, add edging around it (watch out for large roots that would be in the way). Make planter with other materials if edging doesn't work. (this will have to wait until Fall when it's not so hot and when I can plant wildflower seeds).
    • Plant passion flower vine seeds
    • Turn the composting bin
    • Harvest the roselles?
    • Plant wildflower seeds!
    • Refill rest of cat litter jugs at rainbarrel 
  • Health:
    • Call gyneco to make annual appointment - I'll do that once I'm more comfortable with my weight because I know they'll be nagging me about it anyway.
    • Use recumbent bike 
    • Do 5 min of strength exercises  
    • Log food into My Fitness Pal 
    • Record exercise in Walgreens Balance Rewards
    • Weigh myself (Wednesdays) Done :(
  • Kittens
    • Rub kitten towels on New Kitty and Mean Kitty
    • Start introducing moistened kitten dry food - Done
    • Design kitten playground - Done
  • Maintenance:
    • See if I still have mildew-resistant white paint for bathroom ceiling
    • Get Greg to replace the ceiling tile in the entry room
    • Test the batteries in all 3 smoke detectors and replace as needed
    • Greg to call plumber
    • Wash the bathroom ceiling with bleached water
    • Remind Greg to re-secure chicken wire to AC unit and also to block off opening under front of the house
    • Scrub mildew off front of the house (porch, behind bushes, front stairs)
    • Install white beadboard in laundry room (will need to measure and purchase)
    • Install new stick-on tiles in laundry room (will need to remove ancient ones first)
    • Paint laundry room cabinets
    • Get Greg to fix/remove rotten wood on front porch
    • Make a list of which outlets need to be replaced and call Duke Energy Homewire Protection to schedule appointment
    • Ask electrician for estimate on installing outlet on front porch
    • Ask Greg to make me new tiled table for electric roaster on front porch
    • Get on flat roof, sweep it, and clean out the front gutter
    • Ask Greg to install gutter screens on the front gutter
    • Have Greg block the opening in the back fence
    • Mend my fanny pack!
    • Strengthen BlueTooth transmitter's cord with electric tape (in SUV) 
  • Technology/Paperwork:
    • Caption old pictures that have already been scanned
    • Scan more old pictures
    • Create spreadsheet to track IRA contributions using ALL our old tax returns - Started but need to do more research.
    • Figure out if we should contribute to regular  or Roth IRAs for 2016 and fund them - I guess I need to wait until tax time next year, actually. I'll have until April 15, 2017 to fund 2016 IRAs so I need to work on taxes way sooner than I did this year so I'd have time to fund the IRAs and THEN file my taxes.
    • Download all blog photos from June through August to my external drive
    • Back up my external drive to my other external drive
    • File the remaining loose recipes that I organized already in appropriate recipe binders
    • Purge filing cabinet upstairs
    • File paperwork - in progress!
    • Write new letter to great grand aunt (include kitten photos)
    • Go through the genealogical material crate
    • Scan what needs to be scanned (if anything)
    • Work on photo album for daughter's graduation
    • Fill out FAFSA for daughter (Saturday)
    • Reply to my French BFF's email
    • Start proceedings for deleting Yahoo Mail account
    • Compare genealogy family sheet (see email inbox) with what I have in my database
    • Replace music on my phone
    • Delete old photos from my phone
    • Sort the rest of the coupons
    • Write September Grocery Recap
    • Write Weekly Grocery Shopping post
    • Work on shopping list - Done

  • My son took a packed lunch to school and rode the school bus.  Still loving it. Well, I am, at least!

  • I used coffee from a small package of Frangelico ground coffee that I had been gifted several years ago to brew my morning pot. So it's still free to me and I finally get to declutter the top of of my countertop microwave (where I keep several things!).

  • We ran out of milk but I keep UHT milk from Dollar Tree for emergencies and this counts so my daughter won't have to forego her morning bowl of Special K!  She saved me the bag from her box of Special K this morning and I will reuse it as a freezer bag.

  • I perused the new weekly ads for Aldi and Save A Lot online and took notes of their produce sales. I added a few of their items to my shopping list for this morning. Jack'O Lanterns for $2.99 at Save A Lot, woohoo!  I use those as seasonal decorations and then cook and purée them to make pumpkin bread throughout the year.  I'm planning on buying 2 of them this year. That's IT.

  • I packed my coffee in a travel cup and brought along from peanut butter cracker when I went on my errands.  I had planned on making more stops but halfway through my trip, I realized that if the kittens got out of the playpen before I came back, they would probably pee and poop on my carpet since the litterbox was in the pen with them. So I nixed stopping by the thrift store and elementary school, as well as Ace Hardware and McDonald's.  I'll have to run another trip this week!
    • RaceTrac: I redeemed a survey reward code for a FREE Cinnabon Long John donut for my son.

    • Save A Lot:
      • I grabbed the 2 best looking pumpkins at $2.99 each
      • I considered asking the cashier if she could discount various baked goods by 50% since the sell-by date was today, but then I remembered that I had pumpkin bread in the freezer and several brown bananas that I need to bake, so I put them back.
      • My OOP was $5.98 and I charged it to USAA Visa for 10% back in Rewards.
    • Vet's office:
      • I picked up the large bag of cat food that I had ordered last week.
      • I paid for the $62.99 OOP with my USAA Visa (10% back)

    • RaceTrac: I stopped by the station in Clermont since gas is cheaper there.
      • I gassed up my SUV for $2.05/gallon and obtained a new receipt with which I will earn a freebie. I also earned 14 loyalty points.
      • I redeemed another survey reward code for another FREE Cinnabon Long John donut for my son.

    • SuperTarget:
      • The strawberries that were on sale weren't Driscoll's so I left them there. The Driscoll's raspberries were $2.99 each so I left them there too.
      • I did purchase bananas there. They were on sale at $0.57/lb and there was a 25% Cartwheel offer.  
      • The chicken aisle was almost decimated!  However, I did get 4 packages of Gold'n Gold ground chicken (I realized last night that my $1.50 coupons were specifically for ground chicken or chicken patties).  I used the 40% Cartwheel offer on fresh chicken and paid only $0.89 per package (down from $3.99!).  Yes, I did find room in the freezers for 3 packages and we'll have the 4th one for dinner tonight.
      • I checked the clearance end cap but there wasn't anything interesting.
      • There was a 50% off offer on Kashi savory bars but the price was still too high for me. However, once I got home, I realized that there was a $1.00 Ibotta offer on it and that I also had a $1.00 coupon!  Grrr.
      • My OOP was 4.35 (I got a $0.10 discount for my 2 reusable bags) and charged it to USAA Visa (10% back).  I got $0.10 back from MobiSave and $0.25 back from Ibotta for the bananas.

    • CVS:  I did 2 transactions:
      • Transaction #1:
        • I had planned on only getting a gallon of whole milk on sale at $2.79, which I did.
        • However, when I looked at the cereal aisle, I realized that several General Mills cereals were on sale for $1.99 each with a $3.00 ECB offer if I spent $10. I also had $1.00/3 store coupon and $0.50/1 manufacturer coupons.  So I bought 2 boxes of Lucky Charms, 2 boxes of Cookie Crisp, and 2 boxes of Reese's Puffs.
        • My OOP was $9.23 but it was all FREE to me since I paid with the CVS gift card earned via our American Express Rewards program.
        • I received $3.00 back in ExtraCare Bucks.
        • I also got back the following rebates: $0.25 off milk and $0.25 off any cereal from Ibotta, $0.10 off milk from MobiSave, $0.50 off Reese's Puffs and $1.00 back from Cookie Crisps from SavingStar, $0.50 off Lucky Charms and $1.00 off Cookie Crisps from Checkout 51, this making this shop a MONEYMAKER :)

      • Transaction #2:
        • I purchase a 60-ct bottle of Rhinocort Allergy Spray, priced at $16.99 (regular price).
        • I used a 20% off any regular item store coupon that I had uploaded to my ExtraCare card yesterday.
        • I redeemed a $10 coupon from a recent coupon insert
        • My OOP was $3.59  after tax and I paid with USAA Visa (10% back)
        • I will submit a manufacturer rebate for "up to $15".  I expect to get $3.59 back, making this FREE to me (save for the price of the envelope and the stamp).

    • Aldi:
      • I didn't need much in terms of food.  The only things that I grabbed that weren't on my list were 2 large butternut squashes (3.79 and 3.63 lbs) because they were priced at $1.69 each, thus making them $0.45/lb or so.
      • I bought 2 bags of grapes and 2 bags of apples on sale.
      • Aside from the food items that I needed, I also purchase toilet paper and 4 jugs of cat litter.
      • My son had told me yesterday that he was ready for a new comforter (he'd been using his since he was a toddler, lol, never wanted me to buy him a new one) and sheets and said he wanted gray as a color.  Lo and behold, this week Aldi has comforter on sale for $12.99 and one of them was dark gray on the reverse and blue/gray/white on the front.  I also bought him a set of sheets/pillow case for $7.99 in white/gray and 2 gray decorative pillows for $12.99 (I thought the pillows would be cheaper, though).
      • So my total OOP was $78.78 (although that included a lot of non-grocery items) and I paid with USAA Visa for 10% back.
      • I got $0.10 back for apples and $0.10 back for bread from MobiSave and $0.25 back for cucumber from Checkout 51.

  • My lunch was leftover portobello mushroom stroganoff, a piece of string cheese, and some raspberries.

  • I received a HUGE box from Amazon. I couldn't remember what I had ordered that was that large, but it was the scratchers for the cats, lol.  I guess Amazon knows that I'll be needing lots of cardboard to expand my pineapple empire outside (I use cardboard to keep the weeds down).

  • I submitted receipts for rebates from MobiSave, Ibotta, SavingStar, and Checkout 51.  I did submit my receipt from Publix last week for the Ronzoni pasta because I can't remember if the rebate was available then or not. I wish they would note the valid dates for those things!  They'll probably reject my receipt, though.

  • After putting the new sheet and comforter on my son's bed, I was left with the top sheet (we don't use those but I'll keep it to use it for something else), the bag that the set came in (same), 2 wide ribbons with velcro at the ends (from the cushions, can reuse for something else) and the plastic bag that contained the comforter. I wish it had a closure, but it can be use to store something anyway.

  • I'm thinking about turning my son's old comforter into a couple of beds for the kittens. I have to think about it.  My sewing machine isn't heavy duty enough!

  • I loaded new offers in MobiSave and Ibotta.  I forgot to look for the Goya Gazpacho at Save A Lot today but luckily the offer for the free bottle came back in MobiSave!

  • My daughter went to her interview. She said it went well but she's not excited about it because the manager wants her to upsell merchandise to customers and she's like me, she doesn't want to bug people. Also the pay is about $2 an hour less than at Disney (she thinks). She calculated that driving to Disney would cost $4.00 a day and she's ready to pay for the gas from her own pocket.  The manager is supposed to get back to her on Tuesday but she's interviewing at Disney on Monday so hopefully she'll get offered the job at Disney and can turn down the Pet Supermarket job if it's offered to her.

  • I had forgotten to buy Black Forest turkey from Aldi so I texted my daughter while she was still in Clermont to ask her to pick some up for me. I also told her to get herself a snack.  Her OOP was $5.30 and she charged it to my Discover card (I think it's 2% back in Rewards). 

  • It poured at 2 p.m. for a while and then again later on. 

  • I received the rebate credits from Ibotta, Checkout 51 and MobiSave.

  • I requested a $21 payout from Checkout 51!

  • I filled out the manufacturer rebate form for the Rhinocort and mailed it.

  • I received a coupon for a free Pocketbac from Bath & Body Works, no purchase necessary.

  • Dinner was chicken burgers on regular bread (See: "Failures"). I topped mine with homemade refrigerator zesty pickles.  We also had corn on the cob (See: "Failures" again!) and a side salad. I used up the 2 small Roma tomatoes that I had harvested on Monday and set out to ripen on my kitchen table.

  • I earned the daily Bing Rewards credits and a few Swagbucks.

  • Senior pictures are tomorrow at the high school but I'm not buying them. Instead, I'm commissioning Middle Son to take pictures of my daughter and Youngest Son too. He's charging me more than I would have spent at the school but I'd rather give him the money and him get the experience too. Anyhoo, he booked the studio at the Orlando Library for us.  My daughter's BFF's mom is a professional photographer and wants to take her own senior pictures of her daughter and my daughter together after school tomorrow.  Obviously, I won't be buying those either.  But it reminded me to text Middle Son to tell him that I didn't just want studio portraits, I also wanted cool outdoor photos.  We agreed that we'd meet him at the studio, shoot there, and then go to lunch and have him take outdoor photos after lunch since the light will be better then.  I hope it doesn't rain!  If it does, we'll reconvene on another day.

  • I bought a new thing a majig from Amazon for my son'c PC to connect to the internet because his stopped working. It's not a modem, it's a wireless adapter because for some reason that PC that Greg paid A LOT of money for, doesn't have a modem card installed.  I swear to you that purchase was a disaster.  Anyhoo, it cost $32.99 and it'd better work but we won't get it until next Tuesday. Yep that's "2 day shipping" for you.  It's Wednesday today. Methinks Amazon's math doesn't add up. I charged it to USAA Visa for 10% back and didn't use any Rewards or points (because 10% back, baby!).

  • Apparently I missed out on the 50 prints for free from Amazon Photos :(

  • Something's got to change around here, I'm back to having food waste.  I have got to stick to my menus!  I had to scrap using up my hamburger buns tonight as they had started to mold.  I composted them. I also had to compost an ear of corn that was slimy and moldy.

  • The kittens are running me ragged!  It's not that they're very demanding, but they're still so little that I have to supervise them closely when they're out of the play pen. They love playing and exploring so much that they're usually out for 45 minutes to an hour or more at a time!  Meanwhile there's not much that I can do.  Sigh.  So that's at least 4 hours of my day spent watching the kittens. Consequently, I didn't get to exercise. I could fit it in after they're down for the night but by that time, I'm tired too!  I need to make it a priority to do it right after their first feeding/playtime in the morning otherwise, there's little chance that I'll be able to fit it in.

  • Despite all the rain we got, the level in my rain barrel hasn't changed :(  I don't see a problem anywhere, I checked that the gutter was clear and it was.

  • My son's computer won't connect to the internet. Luckily, he has the spare laptop that Greg's parents gave us but that means he can't do any online gaming for about a week. He can still play the local games he has installed on his PC though. So he'll survive. I think.

  • Kitten duty
  • Kitten playtime and cuddle
  • Replied to my mom's email
  • Weighed myself (sob)
  • Talk to Greg on the phone
  • Checked online ads
  • Worked on my shopping list
  • Ran errands
  • Documented my trip and put everything away
  • Kitten duty
  • Cleaned litterbox
  • Kitten playtime
  • Submitted receipts to rebate companies
  • Input all receipts into spreadsheets
  • Texted Middle Son about photo shoot
  • Corresponded with my sister via Instagram
  • Completed and mailed rebate
  • Kitten duty 
  • Kitten playtime
  • Had to put kitten to sleep (no, NOT in that sense of the expression!)
  • Cooked dinner
  • Kittens are up again 30 minutes later, wth?!
  • Relocated playpen to living room
  • Relocated kittens to playpen
  • Tried to fix my son's PC problems
  • Ordered a new Wifi adapter
  • Talked to Greg on the phone
  • Did the dishes
  • Prepped food for the kittens

  • 4 pounds gained.  I can't let them get me down. I have got to rise above this setback and redouble my efforts. It is NOT in vain.  I have got to be healthier and thinner by the time I'm 50 next year.  I need to stare at the picture the librarian gave me yesterday. I was 70 pounds lighter (!) and I looked and felt wonderful. I won't be young again but I can be healthier again.  Nothing tastes as good as thin and healthier feels.

  • For the wake-up call on my diet?  Yeah, that's a stretch.
  • that my daughter always brings up empty trash or recycling bins up to the house when she comes home and notices that they've been collected, without being asked.
  • that my daughter doesn't mind running errands for me when I ask her to.
  • that Aldi happened to have exactly what I needed for my son's bed this week!
  • that Middle Son was receptive to my request about the photography session.


As my mom was complaining about her animals keeping her up all night, I myself had a very good night because the kittens, once again, slept through the night, along with our other cats.  They fell asleep at 9:30 p.m. last night and I woke them up at about 6:15 a.m. to feed them!

They didn't eat much because they just wanted to go play!  So they played and jumped, and battled, and ran and at one point Dark Explorer looked like he was going to pee on my carpet so I put him in the litterbox and he had a big poop. Yay!  And then Princess Poopy Bottom stepped in there with him and also had a big poop. Double yay!

Tabby Kitty is a mommy's boy and so is Dark Explorer :)
After a while the boys started to tire up (not Princess PB, she's always on the go-go-GO!) so I put them back in the pen and also put their food bowls with the rest of the food in there with them.  If anything, I thought it would buy me some time while I was out shopping. I'm left them in the living room because if they decided to leave the pen, at least they'd fall on carpet, not on hard tiles!

Only halfway through my shopping trip, I realized that if they did escape, there was no litter box on the ground near the play pen as theirs is in the playpen with them!  That stressed me a lot, not that they would walk around, but that they might pee and poop in a variety of places. So I tried to rush my shopping and came home sooner than I expected.

I found them awake but in the play pen. Phew!

This afternoon, they woke up quite often.  They love to play!  They are so active.

I offered them kitten food this afternoon. A bowl softened in water at first. The boys ate without any problems but Princess Poopy Bottom turned up her nose at it.  So I added formula and rice cereal to the 2nd bowl. Once again, the boys ate but Princess PB turned up her nose.  Arrgh.  Finally, once the boys had fallen asleep, she did eat.

Doesn't that look disgusting? I mean, yummy?

You know who else wanted to eat the kitten food?  Guess.

Arrgh, I had to warn him off several times but he kept on creeping closer and closer. Male Cat!  You've got to wait for your dinner at 6:30 p.m.!  Later on, New Kitty started coming closer as well.  Good grief.

Pretending to sniff the litter box so he can inch closer to the food bowls...

"Argh, that kitten is in my way, I can't see the food bowls!"

He's closer.  I love this picture, both of them looking at the other two (off camera) getting their craze on with a shoelace!
In the late afternoon , I made a kitten playground in the living room and brought the kittens to play there.  Princess PB is definitely a little spazz and was happy as a clam. I had put the bed down on the floor as well and soon Tabby Kitty was crawling in there and falling asleep. Dark Explorer followed suit pretty soon.  However, Princess PB was just being her hyper little self and did NOT want to sleep. She jumped on the sleeping boys and woke them up, tried to suck on Tabby Kitty's butt (but he doesn't want her to anymore so there was drama) and refuses to go into a box or a carrier by herself to sleep without protesting very loudly and trying to jump out!

Ignore the baskets of laundry that I have yet to fold!

And... action!

Tabby Kitten has already joined Morpheus and Dark Explorer is getting ready for bed too...

The boys are asleep but Princess Poopy Bottom wants to play peekaboo!
So like a toddler,  I grabbed her and forced her to stay on me, while I sat on the couch. The boys went back to sleep in the bed. At first she was playing with my fingers, then she started purring as I was petting her, and finally she went to sleep on me. I waited 15 minutes and then put her in the bed and she went back to sleep.  I don't have a picture of her sleeping on me so here's a picture of Tabby Kitty falling asleep on me this morning and also in his bed later on. He's just the cutest sleeper :)

LOL!  My son took this one :)
So I decided to go cook dinner. 30 minutes after I had left them, all three were awake again and ready to play!  Arrgh.  This time I brought the playpen back from the Cat Room and put them in there to entertain themselves. If I don't make eye contact with them, they stay in there pretty well.  They're playing right now. I have the lights off but the TV on.  I wish there was a room I could put them in with a whole playground where they could stay but there isn't, unless I leave them in my bedroom upstairs by themselves.  Hmmm, it might have to come down to that. Only there's a big gap under my door so they could get out easily....

Look at how much he's changed already!

Not making eye contact, not making eye contact!

OK, enough of the kittens, it's my turn to be cuddled!

I need more time in my day to watch the kittens, exercise, and do the other stuff that I need to do. Blogging is very enjoyable but very time consuming for me. I'm going to scale down the blogging for a while because my focus needs to be on the kittens and getting healthier.

So I think I'll post periodic kitten updates and Freebies post to motivate myself, and the off Field Trip post.  But the daily frugal stuff is going to go back to being a weekly update, like I used to do in the very beginning. At least for a little while.

We'll see how that goes!

How was your day?  Did you get some playtime too?