Thursday, November 27, 2008

7 Quick Takes (Not Quite) Friday

Eight people,
Four dogs,
Three pies,
Fourteen pounds of turkey,
Twelve hours...

One tired, insomniac mom who is hoping that the almost two inches of snow on the ground right now doesn't turn into more and rain on my Black Friday shopping parade...
Not that I really go shopping on Black Friday for the stellar deals (who really wants to buy a $2000 flat screen TV for only $999 anyway?) Mostly, it's just something that has become a tradition with my MIL and me and any other females around for the holiday (so this year, MIL, me and the girls).

Dinner went well...I managed to cook the turkey long enough that it didn't need to be carved (again...this is kinda a trend with me!) I figured out how to make sweet potato casserole, green bean casserole and frog eye salad (all firsts for me!), and everything came together really well by the time our guests arrived.

Apparently there was a really terrible semi accident on the highway down to our town from hubby's hometown (where our four people guests and three doggie guests came from), and everyone was pretty sure no one could have survived it, but Charlotte's godfather stopped and talked to the wrecker crew on his way home and found out that the truck driver's only injury was a broken jaw...what a huge blessing to be thankful for!

Hubby and I were discussing the cost of our Thanksgiving dinner (because his grandpa tried to PAY me to help out with didn't work...I'm more stubborn than him) and so since I can't sleep and am a numbers dork, I got my receipts out of my wallet and added it up. This does not include staples from my pantry and fridge (butter, milk, cornstarch, sugar, pudding mix, marshmallows, spices, coconut), but my total before tax and coupons (and I would bet I had close to $5 worth of coupons) was $23.93...that fed 8 of us exceedingly well for lunch (dinner), 6 of us as much as we could handle for dinner (supper), a homemade TV dinner for hubby for tomorrow's lunch, about 2/3 of a batch of frog eye salad (the recipe said that it served 11...apparently that means 11 people eating a dinner plate full of it) and probably a good 4-5 lbs of turkey meat that I need to do something with!

I have to rave about my great new addition to my spice cupboard...for the entire time we have lived in this house (honestly, I don't really even remember my spice space in our old house, other than it is better that what I've had here) I've been struggling with my spices...I never could find them, I'd have to empty out the whole cabinet to find something, or I'd give up and use something that was kinda-sorta somewhat like what the recipe called, hubby and I have been trying to find some pull out shelves that will fit in our extremely narrow cupboard. Finally, I was at wits end over the weekend (about the time we decided that we would be hosting Thanksgiving) and googled "pull out shelves for a spice cupboard", and found this blog post that has CHANGED MY LIFE (okay, maybe it wasn't quite that dramatic...) Such a simple idea, but so was even within hubby's home improvement capabilities (although apparently reaching the random bunch of 2x4s in our garage was a little dangerous...)

We are currently reading a book that I am really enjoying, but am a little reluctant to suggest to people: "The Ultimate Cheapskate's Road Map To True Riches" by Jeff Yeager. Now, I'm not reluctant to suggest the book because of the advice in it...but because it is pretty crude and crass...Hubby grew up in a family with that kind of a sense of humor...I grew up in a family with no sense of humor...So, if you are not from a family with a slightly vulgar sense of humor, you may have to wait until you have been married into one for close to a decade...In particular, I really enjoy his concept "skip the money step"...basically, what you do is to not buy something that you will have to work to pay for...the best (simple) example is the car...You want a car as a teen, so you get a job to pay for the car and the insurance and the gas, but the job takes up all your time so you can't enjoy your car, but now you need your car to get you back and forth to's a very interesting book.

Last weekend we ended up staying the night up at my MILs house (well, my FIL does live there, too...but let's face it...houses tend to belong to women) and the girls didn't get even close to enough after a whole bunch of drama queen moments by one girl or the other, I reached my limit, packed up and we headed home early (about 4 pm, we usually don't get out of there until close to 9). The final drama was that hubby's grandpa's dog snapped at Eva and it scared her...Not only was hubby's grandpa's dog there, but also my FILs dog, our dog, and my SILs three cats (not my SIL, though...she is visiting a convent in Nebraska this week). Somehow in all the hustle and bustle of trying to get all our stuff together, I managed to leave a bag behind...inside the bag were several books, a set of coupon inserts, a couple of movies, and my purse (with my keys, wallet, cellphone, etc in it!) We were too far away to go back and get it by the time I realized my purse was in there, from Sunday until today I had no car keys, no wallet, no license, no debit card...nothing! Yesterday, hubby forgot to take several things that I really wanted to get in the mail before Thanksgiving, and I originally thought "no problem". I figured I could drive to the bank, get some cash, mail the things and stop by the grocery store on the way home for a few items....then I realized that we don't have a spare car key for our new I thought since it was nice, I would get the stroller, walk to the bank, then walk to the post office, then steal hubby's car keys and car and make him walk home from work...then I realized that he had the car with no car seats...and I realized that Eva wouldn't do well with walking to the bank, post office, grocery store and then I left hubby a message on his cell phone, and he felt guilty enough to take a break, drive home, mail my letters, AND stop by the grocery store after work the day before Thanksgiving...he really is a great guy!

And those are my the morning I'm sure there will be more over at Jen's blog!

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