Walgreens Easy Saver Program

Southbeach Bars

One of the many savings programs at Walgreens is their rebate system. You buy a participating product listed in the rebate book, go online and enter in your receipt number and at the end of the month have it applied to a reloadable gift card, plus you earn 10% of the total.

So, they had the South Beach breakfast bars on sale for $2.50 a box. The deal was, spend $15 worth and get $5 back in rebate. I also had $2 off coupons, so they were $.50 a box. Bought 6 boxes for $2.50 x 6 = $15-$12 (6, $2 off coupons), made it $3 for 6 boxes, plus the $5 MIR plus 10%, made it a $2.50 money maker! But, this month when the rebates went through, the Kraft $5 rebate got applied 3 times. Not sure why. So, I made another $10.10 on the deal. I read on the boards that others had this same thing and calls to customer service left it as is. Wow! Talk about a money maker!!! Now if I would actually eat them and get on my diet! They actually taste pretty good.

Also in the picture, are two Reeses Whips. They were free. I have bought over 20 of those, or should I say, taken them because they were all FREE, but I haven't actually tried any. I look at them, and plan to, but then I pass. Bethany likes them, and I want to send some to Andrew.

Got 4 boxes of Kelloggs Special K that Bethany loves, but I rarely buy because they are always so expensive, hard to find them under $3. I got these for $2 each, plus $3 in register rewards back, so that is 4 boxes for $5, or $1.25 a box.

Also got 4 glade candle products for $5.50, but will get back $4.40 back in MIR. so $1.10 for all four!

At the beginning of February, I have $30 on my gift card, and a $10 register reward to spend at Walgreens!

I've Got 30 Minutes

Another night of soccer practice, I hit a Walgreens and CVS. I was looking for a few things in particular, plus I was craving chocolate!! Thank goodness I had a buy one get one free coupon for Hershey bars!

Ran into Walgreens looking for Olay Body Wash on clearance. Found some. I only had two coupons. Not sure if I will like this stuff, but got two bottles for .42 cents a piece. Once again, applied .84 cents to my gift card, so no oop.

Then, found at CVS a small Excedrin purse pack for $2.49, and get $2.49 back, so free after ECB. Bonus was, I had a $1 off coupon, so $1 money maker! They were out of Hershey bars there, so had to keep looking!

Hit the CVS right by the church, since it was Bible Study night, found my chocolate. Got two bars for .54 cents.

So, for my 30 minutes of shopping, I got 2 Olay Body Washes, 2 Hershey with Almonds candy bars and one 10ct Excedrin. I spent $2.03 actual cash, .84 cents towards my gift card, and received back $2.49 ECB, so I made .46 cents!!

Gotta love it!

Side note: At Bible Study, we eat and chat at the beginning, so as I was enjoying my chocolate bar, one of our sweet gals who is pregnant was totally eying my Hershey bar. So, I whipped my "free" one out of my purse and slid it on over to her. She was very happy! :-)

I Love Soccer Practice

Soccer practice is becoming my favorite time to scout out the deals at CVS and Walgreens. There are 3 Walgreens within a mile of each other on the same road!!

This past week I was on the lookout for more clearance shampoo and conditioner. I had seen the John Freida Frizz-Ease products that I use in clearance, but since I had no coupons, passed. But, in February Walgreens has a coupon in their monthly booklet for $1 off any JF product. Then, I read that even though it is marked at $3 clearance price, that they are actually ringing up at $1.69, minus the $1 instant value coupon, and it is .69 cents!

So, I was on the hunt. The first Walgreens had them marked at $3, but when scanned were not marked down any further.

The second Wags had 4 shampoos and when scanned were $1.69! Sweet! Then to see if they would take the coupon in their book. When they scan the coupon, it takes off $1 for each item you have, so it is like an unlimited coupon. Total score. Since it worked, I went back and got the rest they had on the shelf.

I have $30 rebate money on a Walgreens gift card that I earned from January, so no out of pocket for me. Hit another Walgreens and found 4 more bottles.

All in all, I got 11 bottles of shampoo and conditioner of a product that I actually use all the time, for $9.02 applied to my gift card, so no out of pocket. These bottles normally cost $5.99. So, $5.99 times 11 equals $65.89. That's an 86% savings!

Very exciting!

Give a Girl $20 and She Will Bring Back Change

Tonight I made a quick run to Walgreens and Randalls. I got 8 boxes of cereal, (Kelloggs Froot Loops and Rice Krispies), 1 Reynolds Wrap, 1 gallon of milk, 4 light bulbs, 10 boxes of chewy bars, 2 boxes of Ritz Crackers, some bananas and grapes all for a grand total of $18.04!!

Besides using coupons and taking advantage of the sales, I also used a $10 register reward at Walgreens that I earned last week from my exceptional week at Walgreens. More on that later...

After Christmas Goodies

While most people were jazzed about the after Christmas sales for wrap, gifts, etc...I, on the other hand, was looking ever so closely for seasonal products on sale.

Groceries

For a mere $26 I got 2 toothpastes, 2 Ziploc Gallon-Size Freezer bags, 3 200ct Bounty Napkins, 2 Solo Red Cups, 3 25pk Cascade Gel Packs, 3 Dawn Twin Packs of Dish Soap, and 3 32ct Electrosol Power Tabs. Besides the toothpaste, all of the other products were 60% off. I got both toothpastes for .82 cents, and received back $2 in CVS Extra Care Bucks making it a $1.18 money maker!! Whoo hoo!!

It was funny because if the package had, say a penguin skiing on it, then it was considered seasonal and 60% off like the Christmas stuff, combine it with a coupon, and the savings deepens. I had a total of 62% savings. Oh, and I just noticed the cake and icing I got. It has a great shelf life, so Molly can use it next year.

And, check out the beautiful Grand-daughter clock in the back. My wonderful father-in-law made all of his kids' families one for Christmas. It was free!! :-)

Also, today, I got my first rebate check in the mail for $2.39. It was a try-me-free deodorant. Only took three weeks to get that! I will roll that back into my grocery budget for the week, which by the way I am way under each week. Just tonight I had an amazing Walgreens trip. One of the transactions only cost me $2.24! I got 8 Skippy Peanut Butters and a pack of Skittles for Blake, all for $2.24, but now, free, and I got a $10RR back to spend again, which I did, and I will post about all of that later.

I'm back, I think.

Can't believe it's been over two years since I last posted. A lot has happened, and it's too overwhelming to rehash.

What's new with me? Same 'ol stuff, tennis, mom, working with young singles and college, etc...but my newest passion is couponing. I know, boring, but totally exhilarating. It's not just regular coupon clipping and using it whenever you need that item, no, this is couponing on steroids.

I have spent the last several months learning the tricks of the trade, reading, reading, reading. Side note, I have recently been elected to the tennis board for the tennis league. The ladies are a great group, and love to have lunch! Today after a long meeting for the Captains, we spent two hours at a Mexican food restaurant. The group I was near were all avid readers. They were going on and on about the books they have read. At some point, they asked if I read. I just said, no. But, as I thought about it, I read a lot on the internet. I spend a lot of time reading the message boards in the couponing world because that's where you learn the ropes and get the hot tips.

On Thanksgiving morning, I had my first really awesome deal at CVS. It was a special three-day sale, and I scored big-time. I spent about a dollar and change out of pocket (oop), and got over $100 worth of product. I wish I would have taken a picture of that. What a total rush that was!!

So, that kind of started me on this long process. I love to get all my deals and set them out on the counter for all to marvel and enjoy. I am keeping records of my savings, as well. Here is a picture of my finds soon after my first deal.


This picture of my haul is several transactions and trips to Kroger, Walgreens and CVS. I spent around $85 for about $190 worth of product. About a 50% savings. Looking back over my notes, it's almost embarrassing how much oop (out of pocket) I had back in the day. Ha ha!

But, I was in major stockpiling mode. The really good deals are yet to come. Not every week I do this well, but on average I save anywhere from 45%-80% on items I am concentrating on now, or cherry picking as the couponers like to call it. :-) I'm even making money on stuff! They are paying me to take it off their shelves. That's the kind of savings I like.

Sometimes I go to the store with hardly any coupons and just buy things we need, but I tell you, it is very hard to do that now.

My favorite new saying, "Do you know what I could do with that dollar!!"

More to come. I have several more pics to post, and once I get back in the groove, I'll post more on what's going on in the family, and more details on how to get these deals.

The Chipper Chicken

Who would have thought Andrew would be an event planner. Add to that, match maker. For this year's homecoming festivities Andrew was asked by a girl or group of girls, I'm not sure the details, to go to Homecoming and find them dates, but not the "we're a couple" kind of date, just a you will look good on my arm kind of date, I guess. Anyway, so Andrew said yes, against my advise, which was, unless you are in love, DON'T GO!!

After a bunch of back and forth conversations, the girls decided they didn't want mums, so the boys don't have to worry about that, or this mother.

The other night Andrew asked if a particular restaurant takes reservations. So I guess he is now the party planner for the evening. Another girl wants to join the group, and not knowing her as well, he declared that he was done playing match maker, she was going to have to find her own date!

Ha!

Note: I have written several new posts all at once, so scroll down to catch all the news!

Quite the Headache and Brush With Fame

Bethany's high school career has started out pretty smoothly, although the stresses are high. She began having headaches a few weeks before school started, and has had them pretty regularly since. I finally got her to the doctor, and she is currently taking medicine for allergies. She's feeling a little better, but they are not completely gone, so we will see how that goes with another visit with the doctor.

Then there's Tony. At school there is an older boy who has landed a role in a new Disney Channel show. I won't call Bethany a stalker, but let's just say that if your day is made by how many times you see this boy in a given day, you practically know his schedule, and plan your opportunities to brush up against him in the hall, you may be close to stalker status. ;-)

Each day I get the reports of the Tony sightings and Beth's brush with fame. Whatever helps her get through the stressful day.

He's A Joy

Each year at this time I attend the parent-teacher conference at the elementary school. It's always good to hear from your child's teacher what they think. For the most part it's always positive. At Blake's kindergarten conference several years ago his teacher was not in the mood for accolades, at least I don't remember hearing any because all I recall is the negative comments about...well, I can't even remember that either because what I was expecting to hear was how cute Blake was, and what a joy he was to have in the class. I really wasn't concerned about his academic potential at the moment, he was only five. So, when she didn't start the conversation with anything resembling my thoughts as a mother, admittedly a crazy one where Blake is concerned, of this precious little boy, I couldn't process completely what she was saying.

What killed me was later when I was back at my mom's house telling her about my conference with Bethany's teachers, little sweet Blake came in and said, "what about me?". My heart broke into a million pieces right there as I had to lie to my five year old about what his teacher should have said if she had half a heart!

See I have four wonderfully talented, smart and well-liked kids, I am accustomed to hearing glowing remarks. You know, the usual, he's so smart, she is such a joy to teach, they should skip several grades, you are recommended for parent of the year, etc...comments like that. This poor teacher didn't have a chance with expectations like that, but seriously, she must have forgotten the say three things positive for every negative rule. It was business as usual let's get right to the "we need to work on this" meeting.

Many months later Andrew returned to the school and Blake's teacher at the time had a daughter in Andrew's grade. They eventually became great friends. So, one day in carpool, Blake's teacher approached the car and said something about "my son". Of course I assumed she was about to tell me something wonderful about Blake, her current student, my son. As I eagerly awaited the comment about my sweet precious Blake, she went on to tell me something about my other son, Andrew, and how wonderful he was.

Blake's other teachers have all had nice things to say about him. He is smart, does well in Math, has a tender heart, is pretty much well-behaved, although social and likes to be silly, at times. So, I have heard plenty of good reports on Blake, and we are very proud of him.

Fast forward to yesterday when I met with his 4th grade teacher. She wanted to open with a word of prayer. In her prayer, it came. She actually said the words "he's a joy" as she spoke about Blake. I almost broke down right there. I definitely teared up, but forced myself to hold it together. This teacher didn't need to hear all my emotion built up surrounding that one comment. She said many more great things about Blake, like how she wished she could clone him and have more boys in her class like him.

I couldn't wait to get to the car, call Bill and tell him the news, "he's a joy!".


Driving Miss Molly

Molly is sixteen and wanting to drive so bad. She is ready for freedom, I guess. So, the past couple of weeks we finally started the behind the wheel instruction. She got her permit last May, so you can imagine how anxious she was to get moving onto the next phase. Bill and I are not in as big of a hurry, but she is persistent and we need to get her driving.

We start in the parking lot. Turns, starts, stops are the things you must master here. It's really tedious and boring, but a great place to practice these maneuvers. Molly does well here and the church parking lot is a great place to practice, especially parking. We always find her friends cars to park in between figuring they won't mind if we leave a little paint on their car. Ha ha...

I started referring to her as grandma, because the way she sits so close to the steering wheel and with her glasses and hair up, she looks like a little grandma cautiously driving around, grant it, this is a good thing!

During her first parking lot evaluation she scored an 85. She was devastated. The scoring was such that if you weren't perfect in a section you lost a whole 10 points. She couldn't believe it, but I saw it as a good evaluation of where she needed to improve. A week later, she got a 100.

We also have to log a lot of hours driving. We were both glad when she graduated from the parking lot to the neighborhood. Oooh...watch out kids, Grandma is coming to a neighborhood near you. Actually, I am so teasing because Molly is doing very well. We drove around this afternoon for a nice 30 minute drive through the back of our neighborhood that weaves into other sections, top down, relaxing, except for the occasional freak-outs on my part. I seriously need a brake on my side of the car!

Molly is doing well. It's a slow process, but a process. Bill has even let her drive to school and to church on early weekend mornings. So, add to my list of things to do, driver instructor. Wouldn't have it any other way.

Operation Ukraine: Mission Accomplished

Passports: check

Airline tickets: check

The two most vital pieces of our big Christmas adventure has fallen into place!

In this post I explained our plans for visiting my parents. Obviously, we didn't go in the summer. Still some details to hash out, but for now, we can put the when and where on the calendar in pen!!

Tennis Rants and Raves

When I got into this, I looked forward to the "ladder" system of starting at the bottom skill wise and working my way up through the tennis ranks. Remember how I had to earn the skirt?

There are four levels in the league, A, B, C, and D. Then, within those levels are lines, 1-4. Level D, line 4 is the entry level, bottom rung. I started with lessons, worked my way up to playing doubles, participated in drills, and looked forward to the day when I would join a team. I was picked up on a team to play in the C level. The past two weeks I have played line 2 and line 3 with the same frustrating results even though we are having great matches.

But, I wanted to start at the bottom rung of the ladder, instead I was placed several steps up, and I am hanging on for dear life!! I know it's supposed to be fun, but it's hard to keep it all in perspective. I want D, 4!!!

I need tennis shoes, but I have a deal with myself that I won't get any until I win my first match. It may be awhile.

Good luck finding the "raves" in this post!

Andrew's New Blog

Andrew has yet another blog. If you enjoy his writing, you will enjoy this one. Since he is 18 now and will be participating in his first presidential election next year, he is working his way through all of the candidates from both sides doing a little research, offering his opinions on each, and asking for input. It's really fun to read his thoughts and it will be equally fun to see what he decides in the end. It's not all politics, just a place for him to post about other things that music.

So, go check it out!

Happy Birthday, Andrew!

His birthday was actually yesterday, but around here we celebrate all week. We haven't even given him his gifts yet, although he has had plenty of gifts from friends and family.

He created a facebook invite for his birthday bash last Saturday. He had a great time, I believe. There were plenty of people around the house. The noise at times was deafening, but spoke to the great fun the kids were having. We had the usual fajitas, Bill's famous guacomole, queso, lots of chips, cake, cookies, sodas, balloons per Andrew's request, and Reeses peanut butter cups. We had plenty of food. Andrew led them all in a rousing song of "Happy Birthday" as well. Even his best friend's mom came and hung around for the fun.

Bill posted some incredible thoughts of Andrew's birth day. I remember him being perfect even though pictures show a bruised face from his difficult journey into this world. He was huge, but in a manly sort of way. It was a great day!

The other night I made a yummy meal and another cake for us all to enjoy since the party cake was consumed. Then yesterday, I served him hot donuts from our favorite donut shop, although it has been a long time since we have had donuts around here, he had a Subway sandwhich for lunch when he got home from school, then an incredible meal of tacos at his Area Bible Study in the home of one of the best hostesses our church has. So, he had a good day for sure.

We will end his week long celebration on Saturday night at a favorite restaurant, that is my fave also, and present some gifts and tie a bow on the fun for this year.

It's been 18 wonderful years, Andrew, you are a joy, and we look forward to the year ahead.

Tennis Boot Camp and Playday

On Wednesday I joined Shawn and her Glennloch tennis team for a day of tennis boot camp. We started at 9 and were put through two and a half hours of drills with three different instructors. Then, we broke for a yummy lunch and door prizes. I actually won a physical training thingy that you put on your arm. Then we played doubles for an hour an a half while the instructors came around and instructed. It was a lot of fun mainly because Shawn was there to have fun with.

Then, on Friday I participated in a tennis playday organized by the league I will be playing in this fall. Because of the huge numbers at the beginners level, I was moved to a different location to play with higher levels. It started really rough, but ended on good note. The first round, I was way out of my league, no pun intended. I was the obvious weak link, and my partner was obviously not having fun. The next round I got to go indoors for drills. That was fun, and I held my own during that wishing I would have had this round first. It was a great warm-up. The last round, I was with some ladies who were very gracious and fun. They didn't take themselves too seriously, and my partner laughed at my poor attempts to be funny, and was a hoot herself, and she was good. She was very encouraging to me complimenting me on my ground strokes. It was all over just as I felt I was getting in my groove, and wishing for more court time.

After a morning of ups and downs, I headed to Shawn's where we ate a bite of lunch and spent an hour in the pool. We deserved this little bit of luxury if only for a while as we licked our wounds and laughed about our morning.

Tomorrow tennis begins for real. I play my first match in the fall league where your win or loss is recorded both for your line and your team. Hopefully, I can relax and have fun and not get too flustered.

I'll be sure to post a detailed play by play!

Year of the Family

Last week before attending Blake's orientation at school, Beth, Molly, Blake and I went to El Gallo for lunch. We talked about the big year ahead with Andrew entering his last year of high school, and as if it was the first time to occur to Molly, she burst into tears while highlighting in dramatic fashion the significance of this year for our family and the changes to come, and all of the years to follow all the way through Blake graduating. I had to stop her before I burst into tears. It's not like I am in denial, no, I am fully aware of the year ahead. I have been saying for months now, that this will be the year of the family. I just want us spending as much time together as possible. We are all so busy with our different activities. I know that we will have to be intentional about spending time together, especially on the weekends. With Andrew driving, it seems that he is gone the most. I don't know how this will all play out, but we will just do our best to hang out together, whether it's all going to Blake's soccer games, lunching more together on Sundays after church, (even with their friends-I love all of their friends), watching Andrew and Molly lead worship together in the same band this year as much as I can secretly recording, all attending Bethany's voice recitals or plays, harassing Andrew at his next job, those kinds of things, not necessarily grand trips or events, just trying to be together more.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Oh, and I think I will have to be like Molly and take my camera with me everywhere I go and start taking massive amounts of pictures to document all of our fun time together...you know what they say, the family that takes pictures together, stays together.

Back In the Saddle Kicking and Screaming

Blake's back to school, and I'm the one kicking and screaming! Blake has happily accepted his role as excited 4th grader ready to hit the books. He started last Wednesday and has a good five days under his belt, and I have logged in 3 of those 5 days back at school myself. I subbed for a teacher that was being tested for some potentially serious health issues, but thankfully, the reports came back negative for cancer. It was an easy job, but since my teenagers don't start school until next Monday, I felt like I was missing out on the rest of summer myself, and a little more time with them before the madness starts. So, we will have the next couple of days to do some shopping, lunching and school ready-ing.

Last week after we got Blake situated at school, the other three had Bobcat Express where they get their schedules, books and stuff. Everyone seems excited to get this year going, I guess. Bethany is entering high school, and she seems nervous, but ready. I'm sure having your big brother and sister there doesn't hurt, and she has someone that she knows in almost all of her classes. I know she will do well. Bethany, have fun, be yourself, you will shine!

Molly will be a big junior, or short one, according to Bethany. She seems the most anxious. It will be a tough year academically, but I know that she is up for the challenge. As wonderful as her life is filled with friends, talent and charm, school is where she feels the most awkward. Hopefully, Molly will feel more comfortable with herself this year, and not worry so much. Ok?

Andrew is entering the big senior year filled with all sorts of unknowns for the future. I'm ok with the unknowns, because I trust that with time and a little loving shove from his parents, he will figure it all out! It will be a big year. Praying that he will find his way and enjoy his last year of high school. The good news is that life does get better from here on out. To quote someone who quoted someone on her graduation day, the best is yet to come. Enjoy, Andrew!!

Ahhh, the Quiet

This week Bill, Bethany and Molly have been away at Victory Camp in Alvin, TX. Bethany went as a camper, her last year as a Junior Higher, Molly went as part of the band and rec, and Bill went as a counselor. They have been having a great time. Andrew, Blake and I are heading out there this afternoon (once the DirectTV guy gets here and installs the very thing that will make our lives complete-ha ha-just kidding, of course), if we ever get to leave.

I have been up since 7am in preparation for the "Cable Guy" to arrive. We had the 8-12 time slot. I wanted him to come early, so we could get on with our day. Well, it's 1:30, and he still hasn't arrived. He called earlier and said that he would be here at 1:00. So much for our plans to head out to Alvin. We will still go, but we were hoping to get there during some of their free time so Blake could swim.

It has been a great week for us here at home, as well. It's been quiet. :-) Not that the girls are loud, but take out half the family from the day to day activities, and well, things run smoother, I guess. Andrew has his own car, so he doesn't need me as his "taxi queen". I have spent much of my time doing laundry and cleaning. Since I have been home for big chunks of time, I can get stuff done. We have also had some fun. Monday we played some tennis together. Andrew has been out every night, so Blake and I have watched movies in bed till we fall asleep.

Last night Blake and I went to the Astros game. In the afternoon Craig Biggio announced his retirement, so we knew this would be a special game to be at. Andrew already had plans, so it was just Blake and me. We got down there, parked, got our tickets, food and to our seats with no problems. The first half of the game was kind of uneventful. Although the game was tied 3-3. At the bottom of the 7th inning, Biggio stepped up with bases loaded. We stood to our feet to cheer him on, and boom on the first pitch which he loves to take, he sent it out of there for a grand-slam home run, only his 4th in his 20 year career and 2nd of this season. We went crazy! I barely saw them all run the bases, we were cheering so loud! It was so fun! After that, Blake was done, so we headed out early to get going. The Astros won 7-4. The night before they got beat 10-2, so what a game for us to be at!!! Too fun!

Today our plan is to head out as soon as the guy gets here and done. My patience is running thin! I know it's not his fault, he doesn't schedule the appointments, but wow! It's getting late! I can't reschedule, Blake would not be a happy camper.

So, I will just sit back, and enjoy the quiet, somewhat clean and orderly house for the moment, because they come home tomorrow! :-)

Update 1:45pm He's here!!

Update 2:12pm Horrors! He has to go into my closet!! Not. Prepared. For that!!!!

Update Well, the guy finally left at 4pm, and we were right out the door behind him. We made it to VC, had a lot of fun hanging out. Blake got to do the water slides and swim a bit around 10:30. We ate pizza at 10, and walked around until around 11. The most fun they seemed to have was playing frisbee in the meeting room. The floor was very slippery, so watching Andrew take a fall about every 3 seconds was comical and painful to watch all at the same time. Blake had fun trying to get it, also while trying to keep from getting hurt. We finally left at 11:20, and 52 minutes later pulled up to home. After a little time of Blake checking out the DirectTV, I told him we needed to head to bed. He was up fairly early this morning watching the sports shows and now The Disney Channel. Bill just texted to say they are on the bus, so they will be home soon where we will head to El Gallo for the updates.

Boy How Time Flies

It's been a little over a year since I started this little blog, and I imagine it seems almost that long since I have posted! It has been a very busy summer!

A few updates:
Operation Ukraine has been moved to Christmas. This will alleviate several potential issues, one being passports, which has been a nightmare for many, timing, Christmas will be more relaxing, and the cost is so much more affordable. We are all very excited even though we have to wait a few more months.

Tennis has been going great! I have been able to play so much this summer in spite of all the rain. This morning was the first time I actually was relieved to hear the rain, so I could just roll over and sleep instead of getting up and going to play! Shawn and I just finished up a summer's league. It was so much fun, and we really are improving! We did end up with a coveted towel even if they gave it to everyone! ;-)

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
"40 Love"

This week I was able to get together for our annual lunch with Shawn, Misty and Sandi! Jeanna was supposed to join us, but had to decline. She and her family celebrated with us for my birthday! For several years now, we use this time of the year, usually around my birthday, to get together. I tried unsuccessfully to make it a no-gift occassion, but they wouldn't have any of that! We had a good time and laughed and caught up. It's never enough time, though. We hope to get together sooner than next year. Both Sandi and Misty are going to Kenya in a few weeks, so maybe we can get together after their trip to hear the awesome stories!

Lunch

Here we are "Fab in Our Forties"! Sandi just got her little perm for her trip. Too cute!

Besides tennis, and South Beach, I have been the taxi queen taking the kids all around. Molly has been busy volunteering at church, Andrew has been busy socializing, Bethany has stayed busy at home and church, and Blake has tried to stay busy, although we haven't had much soccer except for a couple of camps.

And then there was the rain...we have had so much rain. It's been good in the sense that it has kept the temps down (I am sitting here in a sweatshirt), but it is really starting to get annoying! Well, annoying for us, but I am certain a real problem for many. So, I can easily deal with annoying.

Bill is heading out to Junior High camp this Sunday along with Bethany and Molly. Summer is moving along, and we are enjoying it!

Operation Ukraine

So we are planning a family trip to the Ukraine this summer to visit my parents. A very huge task in so many ways. First, Must. Get. Passports. I have known for months that this is an integral part of the process of actually going abroad, but right in character I procrastinated to the last possible second. It used to take 6 weeks to process, but now they are saying up to 10-12 weeks. I am praying for them to be true to their word. I can start tracking them in about 3 weeks.

We have a man working on the tickets and possible route scenarios.

Stay tuned for the saga.

« Older Entries