Adventures of an Island Mom


Tip Tuesday September 29, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — srowe5 @ 3:21 pm

I read an awesome article the other day at MSN Money and I’d love to share some of the money-saving tips they propose.  I’ll also add in a couple of my own!

1.  Don’t overpay your taxes. Sure you love to get a fat refund from the IRS every spring. The fact is, however, you’re effectively lending money to the government interest-free. Go through your tax return and see if you can plan your withholding so you get to Dec. 31 maybe getting a $100 refund. That way you can use your money NOW. (And bank the refund when you get it.)

2.  Never spend a windfall. Take your income-tax refund, that holiday money from your folks, the $16.35 overpayment check from the telephone company and any other extras and save em.

3.  Go veggie. If you can do three meatless days a week (without substituting pricey fish), you could save $25 a week, which equals $100 a month, which equals $1,200 a year! Beans: Ya gotta love em.

4.  Clean it yourself. I’ve discovered a nifty trick: When a clothing label says, “Dry Clean Only,” I wash it. Or I dab out that little coffee stain with an old-fashioned cleaning device known as a sponge.

5.  No pet pampering. Does your dog need those pricey snacks? Does your cat need acupuncture? Probably not.

6.  Re-evaluate. Re-evaluate. Re-evaluate. That dinner out cost more than you spend on groceries in a week. That pair of shoes is worth half a commuter pass. Learn what your money is worth, and you won’t be so quick to dispose of it.

7.  Dont pay unnecessary fees. Like the $1.50 you pay just because the ATM is right there, right now, as opposed to walking two blocks to your bank, where you don’t get charged every time you use your card. Or, the late fees for returning videos.  Or, the fees that some companies charge you to make your payments online.

8.  Try not to pay a pro. If you can fix the neighbors car, and she can paint the bathroom: do it.


Buttery Rolls September 28, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — srowe5 @ 3:30 pm
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I just had to take a quick minute to post about THESE amazingly delicious rolls!!  I just made them for our dinner tonight and I, of course, had to try one (after I took the picture!), and they are DEEEEEElicious!!  The only changes I made were:  I didn’t have bread flour, so I used regular flour, I just sifted it, and they still are amazing!!  And, my oven tends to run a little hot, so I baked them for about 20 minutes in a 350 degree oven.  PERFECTION!!  They are so easy and so tasty!!  In fact, all the kids are napping, so I’m going to throw one more batch together to have in the freezer!  TRY THEM!!!  You won’t be disappointed!



Meal Plan Monday

Filed under: Uncategorized — srowe5 @ 9:26 am

Happy Monday, everyone!!

It’s been a long, busy, but great weekend!  I think we are all finally getting over our sicknesses and we’re on the mend!

Friday I made a double batch of chili with our abundance of tomatoes!  And, freezing the tomatoes works!!  The skins came off just like “butta” and worked out great in the chili!  Rock on!!  I’m hoping to harvest all of our carrots today and start the process of blanching them and then freezing them, as well.  We’ve already done all of our corn and have a few more cucumbers to eat.  We have already picked lots and lots of apples from our trees, too, and I’ve made quite a bit of applesauce, but more apples are coming on, so in the next couple weeks our house will smell like cinnamon, again!!

Over the past week, I ‘ve gone through all the kids clothes and shoes, pulled out all the summer ones and packed away all the ‘too small’ ones and realized they were in need of some more fall clothes and shoes—no better place to start than the thrift stores!!  So, Saturday we all ventured out!  Mark had to do some work on our other house, so the kids and I enjoyed a day of thrift store shopping!  My favorite Value Village is just a couple blocks away from our other house, so the kids and I walked over there and found LOADS of awesome stuff!!  Sooooo exciting!!  We had a picnic in the park after that, and while Mark finished up, the kids and I went up to the Goodwill and scored on some more great items!  It was a great day!!

Yesterday Mark and I worked hard in the kids’ room.  We pulled out Lukie’s “big boy bed!”  He’s been sleeping in a toddler bed, but to make more room in the closet, we pulled out the single bed and set it up for him.  He was so excited!  We also pulled out lots of other things, re-organized them and got to work on several other projects in the house.  Most of these projects are half-done, but they have all been started and we’ll get to them during the week!  It was a very productive day!  After naps, we went to a local Harvest Fair and the kids had a great time seeing the animals, taking a hay ride and Ava got to ride a horse!  Good times!

Since my 3 weeks of meal delivery is over (what a blessing it was!!!!), it’s time to get back to meal planning!!!  Here’s what I’ve got on tap for the week:

Monday:  Chicken Pasta Primavera (recipe HERE) and I’m going to make THESE buttery rolls today to go with it

Tuesday:  Meatloaf (already made in the freezer), Baked potatoes and fresh corn from the garden

Wednesday:  Chicken Curry and white rice

Thursday:  Homemade Mac and Cheese (already made in the freezer), Polish Sausage, green beans

Friday:  Quick Homemade Pizza

Hope everyone has a great, productive and frugal week!!  🙂


FREE CHOCOLATE FRIDAY! September 25, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — srowe5 @ 9:19 am


This is the LAST week to get FREE chocolate!!

Sign up HERE now!!


Milk September 24, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — srowe5 @ 9:39 am


Did you know that you can FREEZE milk??  Maybe I’m living on another planet, but, I never even thought of doing that!!

I just read a great article that says you can freeze milk for up to 3 months after the expiration date and it’s as good as new! Just make sure it’s in plastic jugs and pour out a bit of it to make room for expansion.

I have not tried this, so I can’t say for sure that it works, but you can bet that if I find a great deal on milk, I’m not going to hesitate buying a few extras and FREEZE them!

Right on!!!!


Little Debbie

Filed under: Uncategorized — srowe5 @ 8:04 am

little debbie

For all you Little Debbie lovers out there, this one’s for you!  (Mom and Dad!!!)  🙂

Click HERE for a .75 coupon for Little Debbie Cupcakes.

Click on the back button and you can print it twice!

Sometimes these snack cakes sell for as low as $1, so this could be a great deal for you!!


SMILE! September 22, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — srowe5 @ 2:13 pm

I couldn’t resist posting these three adorable pictures of Anna smiling!!  At just 5 weeks old!




Such a little sweet pea!