Wide awake…

When I was home with the baby all summer, my husband would come home from work and I’d lovingly throw hand the baby to him while saying, “Please take her for 5 minutes, I’m exhausted!” He usually countered with the age-old “Um, I worked in an office all day. *I* am the one who is tired.” Cue stabby knife eyes at husband.

Don’t run away in fear, this isn’t an anti-husband bitch post or a pissing contest to see who was more tired. We were both really freaking tired. It’s just that I was NICER and KEPT THE BABY WHILE YOU GOT TO PLAY ON YOUR LAPTOP! ::ahem:: (smooths curls and fixes monster wifey face)

But seriously. I was tired. So tired that I actually fell asleep during Law and Order. DUN DUN. And I started drinking coffee again, which kinda sucked because up until summer, I’d been going strong in the midst of a high-horse “I have natural energy, I don’t need coffee!” phase. I would think to myself daily, “babies are exhausting!” And also simultaneously think how awesome I was for managing to take care of one while a) remembering to brush my teeth and b) not falling asleep on top of it.

It was only once, I swear.

In the summer, once I’d get the baby down for her blessed nighttime sleep, I was still able to stay awake until 1 or 2 a.m., even though I was “tired.” Now that I’m back at school, 8:30 p.m. rolls around and I’m lookin’ more like this:

Let's be real. It's 7 o'clock.

So raise your hand if you’ve ever been knocked off your high horse by a baby… after all, they’re tiny, but freakishly strong. Kind of like this lady. Poor summer mom Hangin’ On says, “I’m tired.” Teacher mom Hangin’ On plays the world’s tiniest violin and says, “You don’t even know what tired is!”

Who’s idea was it to only put 24 hours into a day, anyway? And what sort of bribe would be acceptable to warrant squeezing in a few more??

Posted in Back to School, Really Freaking Tired | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Back to school, back to school

I sing that song often at the start of every new school year, for two reasons:

  1. Billy Madison was a completely awesome movie.
  2. Ok, only one reason.

Luckily, unlike Billy Madison, I’m not still attending school. I get to come back and be in charge of teaching little brains.

“Welcome, class! Today we will brainstorm how to help Mrs. G strike it rich.”

Aaanynotreallybutmaybeway, yesterday marked the start of my third year of teaching. It also marked the first official FAIL DAY of Project Hangin’ On Stays Home With Beebs. Rawr. It seems as though my serious plan to become independently wealthy in 3 short weeks was a flop, seeing as I didn’t invent a single awesome thing and also didn’t buy a single lottery ticket.

Costs money + can't eat = difficult to justify.

Well, I’m happy that at least I got an amazing summer break with my beebs before having to get back to the grind. “Wow, that’s so mature of you!” you say (SAY IT).

HA! Tricked you. I was totally a sad Eeyore all over it.

Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to be excited. But that small inkling was more easily crushed by my cute baby’s fat lil’ thigh. My brain was at war with itself; practical logic (lame) vs. emotion (baby thigh love!!). Yup, even after all this glorious time together, I selfishly wanted more time. Not gonna lie, after I dropped my girl off at the parents’ house, I may have allowed myself a pity cry. But just for a few minutes… times the entire ride to work.

To answer your next question, no I didn’t skip the first day of school. See?

Secret teacher meeting cam. I am paying attention.

And I’d been referring to August 22 as Doomsday for weeks – but it was, instead, super great to see my coworkers again. Funny how when you build up a day as being awful, you expect it to be awful? (Man I’m a jerk). It wasn’t. It is a great comfort to not work with a bunch of awful jerks.

In the end, I made it home in one piece. Baby was also in one piece. She didn’t learn to crawl while I was gone – GOOD BABY.

Back to school, back to school. Well, here goes nothing!

Posted in Back to School | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Everybody’s happy.

Since I’m not always good at saving money, I have to make sure I’m good at other things. Gotta keep the karmic balance intact, ya know. So, overspending at the mall the grocery store can’t be followed by a trip to Starbucks and 4 hours on facebook. Rather, overspending at the mall the grocery store (…and then going to Starbucks and spending 4 hours on facebook) has to be balanced by something more industrious and altruistic. Something like doing the laundry and cooking a delicious meal for your hardworking other half. Or, if you’re bad at both of those things like I am,  it’s time to get creative with your karmic balancing. Just look at the dogs (cats, goldfish, whatever you have lying around). They are sad. They used to be the center of your world, until that little fat cute baby thing came into your life.

Before

I am Adventure Doggie and I have my very own tree!

After

You didn't even get me the right sized baby pool.

Well, they deserve lovin’ too! So strap on that lil’ fatcute baby and take the dogs/cats/goldfish on a long walk in the sunshine.  You They need exercise – it’s for the good of the animals. Truly, the good of the animal kingdom. Altruism trumps laundry. Then when you get home, convince your husband that it’s a good day to visit the parents because they really miss the baby. And they’ll feed you. Everybody’s happy, you didn’t have to cook a lick, and your husband will be so in awe of what you accomplished that day, he will absolutely not notice that new dress hiding hanging in the closet.

Posted in Karmic Balancing | Tagged , , | 12 Comments

You’re doing it wrong.

I figured that up until my extreme couponing excursion I should stick to the dollar store, which was fine because the dollar store is a magical place. Shampoo, porcelain figurines, lead paint dog toys baby toys, big boxes of movie candy… all of it. $1. Also – bonus – teaching supplies. So. many. teaching. supplies. I excitedly threw fistfuls of stamps, stickers, pencils, name tags, and other ‘ineeditallbecauseit’sonlyadollar’ type things into my cart. I mentally added the total of what it would cost to *actually* by all those fantastic $1 items. Then I choked a little when it added up to about a thousand dollars, panicked, and immediately left, abandoning everything in the middle of the party supply aisle. Don’t worry, I remembered the baby.

I love you. I hate you. I love you.

I'm sorry it had to end this way.

It was a sad thing, leaving behind those delicious Junior Mints and 12-pack ankle socks (What? THEY WERE A DOLLAR). But my sorrow was quickly replaced by incredible excitement as I drove home to get set for the real shopping trip, to the real grocery store, where I’d see real savings!

My plan of attack was simple. And by simple I mean, super complicated and potentially overwhelming. Did I see this at the time? Go on, take your bets.

I’ll wait.

….

Plan of Attack:

Time Frame: One Day

  1. View grocery circulars online
  2. Register with as many company websites as possible in order to access special coupons
  3. Print internet coupons
  4. Clip coupons from inserts
  5. Organize coupons for easy access
  6. Use circulars to help guide in making a meal plan for the week
  7. Visit as many stores as are necessary to ensure I get the best price on every single product. The crazy extreme coupon ladies are hissing feverishly in my ear: “You never pay full price. NEVER!”

What’s that other thing hissing feverishly in my ear? OH YEAH, I have a BABY.

You can all see where this is going, right? Major sighs.

I tried, really I did. I even got all the way to step 5 of my insano plan before becoming irrationally angry at the ‘krazy coupon lady’ from the internet telling me to stop buying shit binders from the dollar store. Well lady, the mega-awesome bulletproof binder in this video is practically as tall as my baby, and just about as expensive. And yeah, I get it, hobbies often require start-up costs. But the point of starting COUPONING as a hobby was to SAVE MONEY, not shell out MORE on a new binder, pencil case, scissors, calculator, and baseball card holders. Oh yeah and newspaper subscriptions, cuz I’m pretty sure my parents are getting tired of me stealing their coupon inserts every week.

I swear, just talking about this is giving me a post-trauma headache.

Well, in the end I managed to organize my coupons into 24 easy-to-remember categories.

aaaaaauuuuuuuuuuggghhhhhhhhhhhhh

And, I brought them to the store in an orderly fashion:

hate hate die die die die.

Best of all, I saved $25 on my order! Except oh wait, no I didnt. I was defeated by worrying about the coupons’ fine print – scenarios in which a cashier ridiculed me for bringing the wrong size or item ran through my head like a herd of feeble antelopes being chased by a killer robot cheetah, and I was unable to even attempt to use them.

Gigantic bummer of the week: I didn’t save one speck of money. On the bright side, at least I didn’t end up with four boxes of raisin popsicles (although I may have a coupon for those somewhere)…

Posted in Extreme Couponing, Food, Fur and Anger | Tagged , | 5 Comments

I’ll take RQOATC for $.37 please, Alec

So the other night I was watching TLC’s new show on extreme couponing. Husband looks over from his keyboard and says, “That’s insane. If you saved that much money grocery shopping, you could stay home.”

…whaaaa?

So here I am, throwing spaghetti at the dang wall, when I could be home with my baby all day and paying $.37 for $768 worth of groceries?!

Let me explain to you why becoming an extreme couponing queen would basically be the best thing to happen to me, ever. I heart grocery stores. Big time. If I lived in Utah I’d become a polygamist, so I could keep my husband and *also* marry a Food Lion. Grocery stores are like the only place you can go and spend 100% guilt free money, because you HAVE to buy food, because if you don’t eat food, YOU WILL DIE.

Calcium, y'all.

Besides, I have a lot of tender memories from my childhood grocery store trips. Picture a miniature Hangin’ On, learning how to test for the most ripe vegetables. Then learning how to test momma’s spankin’ hand when she caught me grabbing gummy bears from the kiddie traps bulk food barrels. Then there was that one time she and I skulked through the grocery store aisles after a man she swore was Bruce Hornsby (spoiler: nope). And, in my “Are you there, God? It’s me, Hangin’ On” years, I may or may not have hidden myself away in the romance novel section and learned a little something about love. True, pure, throbbing — ahem. Let’s move on.

I SAID MOVE ON!

The bottom line is, nobody can get mad at me for spending money on something we all need to survive (I’m lookin’ at you, husband). But, it’s obviously awesomer to spend LESS money. And awesomest of all, eventually when I become the Reigning Queen Of All Things Coupon, t.v. networks will actually PAY ME to save money. I’ve learned a lot today.

Well, now it’s late, and I may or may not be hyperventilating at the grocery shopping/money saving/staying-at-homing possibilities before me. Tune in next time, when the RQOATC teaches you a little something about money- savin’!

Posted in Extreme Couponing | Tagged , | 14 Comments

The teething beast has arrived…

Sad, sweaty, little thing that she is. And she’s got a message:

Try to make me move. I dare you.

S.O.S.

Posted in Teething | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Phrases that should be banned from the mouths of people who want to save money.

4 days have passed, and I’ve finally managed to fold that mountain of laundry.

Socks don't count.

Winning! So it’s time to tackle a new mountain: cooking. As in, finding food that is already in my house and doing something with it to make it ready to eat. Wannabe full time wife/mommy rules clearly state that string cheese, cereal, and ice cream sandwiches are a dinner no-go. Hmmm. My brain says, “there’s nothing to eat.” The cupboard says,

"Do you not know what food is?"

Sigh. “There’s nothing to eat” is a phrase that should not be allowed in my house. But saying it to the husband usually allows me the option of a) hitting the food store for more (read: different) food, or b) opening the door for the “well then, what should we eat?” question (the answer to which is always “anything I don’t have to cook”).

After determining that marshmallows and Pringles are not acceptable options (thanks a lot H), I decide to go with the old standard, spaghetti with tomato sauce. Not fancy, but it’s right there and I know I can’t mess it up. Plus, it’s fun:

Other people do this too, right?...

I heart pretty much any kind of dinner that can get thrown at a wall on purpose without me looking (more) crazy. Finished product is tasty and best of all, free.

I did not throw the sauce at the wall.

Bi-winning.

Posted in Food | Tagged , | 6 Comments