Della Devoted!: August 2014

Friday, August 29, 2014

High Five For Friday

This has been a long stressful week. It has been busy with doctor appointments for Raylan, my dad and myself. Even though I have been stressed to the max and everyone has been sick, there is still so much to be thankful for. God is good all the time. Let's review some of the things that happened this week.

1) Raylan sat up all by himself. My baby is growing up way too fast!




2) Raylan is also now a big boy. He is sitting up in shopping carts without his car seat. All of this is happening way too fast!



3) Justin and I managed to still have a date day which was a much needed stress reliever, even though I was hoarse and could barely talk. We ate at Cloud 9 Cafe. If you haven't ate there, I highly recommend you do. The food is awesome and they have great prices, not to mention the scenery is breath taking. After dinner we watched Let's Be Cops. It was hilarious. I needed to have a good laugh and it surely kept us laughing.



4.) Raylan had his 6 month shots which are never fun. Poor baby always feels bad for a couple days after :(


5) I finally broke down and organized my cabinets. It was definitely much needed.


I bought mini storage bins at Dollar General for only $1 each.

I organized my canned food into sections such as green beans in one bin, diced tomatoes in another and so forth.



The end result....It's much more organized and I can find everything fairly quick.




Well that's a wrap for my busy week. Let's pray that the weekend is relaxing and goes more smooth than what this week did.


As always I'm linking up with Lauren Elizabeth   photo H54Fbutton_zps973d26e1.png

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

My 6 Favorite Money Making/Saving Apps

I don't know about you but I love to save money. I also love making money. With being a stay at home mom, our income is less now. So I researched some ways to make money. Much to my surprise, I found some money making/ saving apps. I didn't even know these kind of things existed! I decided to download them and give them a try. I'm so glad I did. I want to share my favorite apps with you. Hopefully you will want to download them too.


1) ibotta - You get cash back on the things you already buy. You can get cash rebates on your favorite brands at your favorite stores. With this app you earn real money not points. This app is actually one of my favorites. I have accumulated quite a bit of money already. 

2) Checkout 51- This app helps you save money on the brands you love. It is a grocery store app. If you're anything like me, you grocery shop a lot. With this app, all you have to do is pick the items you like, purchase them at any grocery store and upload your receipt. When your account reaches $20, they mail you a check. This is another one that I have already accumulated quite a bit of money in a quick manner. 

3) GroceryIQ- It's a shopping list that let's you build new lists quickly. It even includes a bar code scanner. With this app, you can also print or email coupons. 

4) Walmart Savings Catcher- I absolutely love this App! All you have to do is scan your receipt. Walmart matches the price of local competitor's. If they find a lower price at another store, you get the difference. 

5) Viggle- You get rewards for checking into and watching your favorite TV shows. You also get rewards for playing songs. 

6) Swagbucks- You can earn Swagbucks and redeem them for gift cards from top retailers such as Paypal, Amazon, Starbucks and etc. You can earn Swagbucks by trying out new products, watching videos, taking surveys or simply by searching the web. 

Try downloading some of these apps. I guarantee you will earn some money. Most of it is from things we already buy or do anyway. So why not make money from grocery shopping or watching TV!


Monday, August 25, 2014

Top 7 Things I Have Learned From Being A New Mom

When I was pregnant I had so many questions and I was so scared. What if I'm not a good mom? What if I don't know what to do? I'm responsible for keeping a tiny human alive! So many questions. When I had Raylan I'm sure I annoyed my friend Tif @brightonabudget with so many questions. Especially questions like how do I do this? or What do I do in this situation? Being a new mom is so rewarding yet scary at the same time. You really do feel clueless at times. But I have found that no matter how many questions you ask, there are somethings you have to learn on your own. Here are some things that I have learned on this exciting journey of motherhood.

1) Never wake a baby up at night to feed it unless it is underweight or malnourished. I learned this the hard way! When I first brought Raylan home, I was so terrified that if I didn't wake him up to feed him at night that he would starve. I know it sounds crazy but that was my logic. I would wake him up every 3 hours to feed him. Then I would burp him and keep him upright for 20-30 minutes. I lost so much sleep! I learned real quick that he wasn't going to starve and that he would definitely wake me up when he got hungry.

2) Put a baby on a sleep schedule. Once again I learned this the hard way too! Now we have a good routine. Raylan will go to bed around 10 or 10:30pm and wake up between 7 and 8am. It will take a little while to get a good routine established but once you do, you will be so thankful that you did.

3) Put electronics down and spend quality time with your baby. They are only babies once and those electronics can wait. My husband is the world's worst with being addicted to his phone.




Raylan and his daddy playing! He loves his daddy so much!



4)  It's okay to make time for yourself. When you make time for yourself, you feel refreshed, less stressed and you can give baby your best. My husband and I try to take one day on the weekends to spend quality time with each other. This gives us time for each other and it gives Raylan a chance to spend time with his grandparents. Don't neglect your spouse or significant other! They still need you too! If not, it will push them away! Some people tried to criticize me and make me feel guilty for these date nights but every parent needs a break sometimes!


One of our many dates at the race track where my husband races


5) Babies get bored just like we do, so play with him or her. Also walk around with baby. Raylan loves to look around and see the big bright exciting world.

Raylan and daddy driving Raylan's toy steering wheel


Raylan and myself walking around Paintsville Lake. He enjoyed looking around and seeing all the different scenery


6) Don't rush bath time! Raylan loves to take baths. He enjoys splashing around. This gives your baby the chance to relax and almost always will put baby to sleep afterwards.


7) I guess it's true what they say Don't Blink, time moves faster than you think! In these past 6 months, I have learned what it is to truly be happy. My son has taught me what love and happiness truly is. I didn't know what living was until 6 months ago. As parents we think we are the teachers, but it's our children who are teaching us how to live and love.

 

Raylan when he was first born



Raylan now at 6 months! Where has the time gone? Time is flying by way too fast!


So no matter how much advice you ask from someone, most things you have to learn from experience. My mother always said that your motherly instinct will kick in when you have a baby of your own. She was certainly right. Yes you will make plenty of mistakes like me in my case but you have to learn on your own and set your own routine.

Friday, August 22, 2014

High Five For Friday

Well we have finally made it to Friday again. It seems like this week has flown by. It's been a busy week but a fun one. I guess time really does fly when you are having fun!!!  Let's take a look back over the past week.

1) Our niece Morgan had her 10th Birthday Party. She should not be this old! Justin and I were together before she was born, so it makes us feel really old lol!





Sorry for the blurry image but I was trying to capture her blowing out the candles. Raylan was in awe of the candles lol!


Raylan loves his cousin Morgan and mamaw Lisa


2) Raylan started baby food. I started him out on peas and he loved them.




3) We had lunch with our friend and former co-worker Whitney. We ate at Los Amigo Dos in Inez. If you haven't ate there then you definitely need to try it. It is amazing!




4) Our baby boy turned 6 months old. Where has the time gone? He should not be this old already. Please excuse me while I go cry :/



5) I decided to jump on the band wagon and try Julep. I would never pay full price for my box however I used coupon code HELLOYOU and only paid $2.99 for my box full of goodies. Please note that I'm not sure if this code is still available.



Overall I am well pleased with the polish. It seems to last. I am hard on my nails and most polishes don't last but a day on me without cracking. I would highly recommend Julep to anyone if you are willing to pay the price of a monthly subscription.




Well that's a wrap for my week. Cheers to the weekend! I hope everyone has a great relaxing one! May God bless you always!

As always linking up with Lauren Elizabeth  photo H54Fbutton_zps973d26e1.png

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

DIY Baby Rattle

Babies get bored and need to be entertained just as we do. If your baby is anything like mine, he loves anything that is colorful and anything that makes noise. Being the crafty mom that I am, I decided to make Raylan a homemade baby rattle to keep him occupied and guess what? He absolutely loved it!!!

What you will need:
Plastic water bottle 
Fruit loops or Cheerios 



Next fill up half of the empty water bottle with fruit loops or Cheerios. Make sure to leave enough room so items in container can move around and make noise. Don't overfill!

 
This is just the right amount! Make sure to tighten lid on really tight or glue it so baby can't get it loose and in their mouth. And that's it. Turn baby loose with it. They will have a blast!


Raylan was really excited! He loved it! It's a cheap and easy craft that your baby can have loads of fun with and the best thing is you don't have to spend any money. You can make it from items you already have at home!

Monday, August 18, 2014

How I saved $100 on groceries without couponing

Go ahead and admit it. Everyone hates grocery shopping. You know what I hate even more? I hate the rediculous price we have to pay for groceries. Now that we only have one income, my husband and I both agreed that we needed to start saving money. Normally when we would go grocery shopping, we would throw what ever seemed appealing at the time into the cart. Only to find, we are having to make several trips back to the store for odds and end things before the next pay day. Truth be told, we would have a cart full of junk and still not end up with much to fix for dinner. This routine was getting extremely  frustrating so I decided I needed to make a change.
   I started meal planning. I now base our meals on a two week period which is Monday thru Friday for both weeks. I plan what I'm going to fix everyday for dinner for those two weeks. My husband and I either eat out on the weekends or order take out. Weekends are my break from cooking lol!


I make a list of everything I need to fix for these dinners including sides to go along with the meals. I also list everything my husband needs to pack for his lunch bucket. We also buy items for lunch at home such as things to make salads, lunch meat, soup and other necessities. In this category; milk, cereal, pop, water, bread and your every day basics are included. 


By doing this, we have saved at least $100 on groceries. Not to mention, less trips to the store.  It does require some planning but it is definitely worth it. This gets all of our grocery shopping done in one trip. The only time I have to go back to the store is if we run out of things to drink or if we need something like bread. So who wants to jump on the band wagon with me and start saving money on groceries?

Friday, August 15, 2014

High 5 for Friday!



It's been another long week. Not only I have been sick but Raylan has been sick also. I'm glad we finally made it to Friday. Even though we have been sick, I must say we have still had a good week. God is good all the time! We shall review...

1.) Raylan has recently loved touching faces. I guess he finds it fascinating. As of yesterday, his first two teeth also broke through on the bottom. 

2) After Raylan went to sleep one night, I kicked back, relaxed and watched God's not Dead. If you haven't watched it then I highly recommend you do. It's one of the best movies I have watched. 

3) I got new glasses and contacts Hooray!!! It's sad to say on my part but I hadn't been to the eye doctor in two years. It was definitely time. I won't neglect my eyes that long again. 


4) I have been trying my hardest to lose my baby weight. I stepped on the scales and I'm proud to say I am down 9 pounds. Yay me!!!

5) I started couponing and for my very first haul I saved $20. I know it's not much but hey $20 is $20 and saving a little is better than saving none. 

 Well that's a wrap. I hope everyone has a blessed weekend. May God bless you always! 

As always I'm linking up with Lauren Elizabeth


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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Delicious 3 ingredient Pulled BBQ Chicken

Being the southern girl that I am, I love a delicious BBQ. You know what else I love? I love recipes that are quick and easy. Us moms don't have time to spend hours in the kitchen when we have little rascals to tend to. If you like Pulled BBQ Chicken, here is a recipe that you will be sure to enjoy...


You will need:
1lb of boneless skinless chicken breast 
1 18 oz container of BBQ sauce of your choice
2 tbsp of Grape Jam 

Directions:
Boil chicken for at least 30 minutes. Let cool then shred chicken. 


After chicken is shredded add full container of BBQ sauce and 2 tbsp of Grape Jam 


After BBQ sauce and Jam is added, be sure to mix up really well with chicken. Then let it simmer in a crock pot for at least an hour. 

There it's all finished! See it didn't take that long did it?

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do...Happy Eating!!!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Gooey Brownies From Scratch

Who doesn't need a chocolate fix on occasion? If you're like me, that's almost a daily occurrence. After my friend Linda brought me brownies last week, I've been craving them. I knew I didn't have any brownie mix on hand and I definitely didn't feel like going to the store. So with a little help from Pinterest and my pantry, I made some from scratch.





 These brownies only require 6 ingredients yet they are amazing! Even If you've never baked anything before, these are so simple. They really are fool proof!


  • 3/4 cup butter, melted and cooled (if you don’t melt the butter you will not be able to spread the batter around the dish)
  • 2 eggs (if you double, use 5)
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Add ins: 1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips, semi sweet chocolate chips, nuts

    1. Melt butter and set aside to cool (so you don’t scramble your eggs). Mix flour, cocoa and salt in bowl and set aside. Please note, if you have the time, it is totally worth it to brown the butter first.
    2. Cream together butter and sugar, mixing well. Add vanilla. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
    3. Add flour/cocoa mixture in three separate additions, making sure all the flour is incorporated before adding more. Tip: start your mixer slowly! Cocoa powder flies everywhere. Hand mix in any nuts or chips.
    4. Line a 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper, spray parchment with cooking spray. Using a spatula or knife, spread the batter evenly in the dish. Tap twice on counter to release air bubbles. Tip: It can be hard to get the batter even because it is thick, so after 10 minutes of cooking you can take the dish out and give it a little jiggle to even things out.
    5. Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out with only a few crumbs. Tip: It’s ok if there are crumbs or batter on the toothpick! It means the brownies will be a little gooey and moist. With 3/4 cups butter, you’d have to bake them until they were bricks to get that toothpick clean.
    6. Let cool for 20 minutes. Then, remove brownies from pan and let cool for at least one hour before cutting. If you can stand it.



    Go ahead and start making them. You know you want to!





    End result....  




    These were so delicious. They were husband approved and that's really saying something. If anyone knows my husband then they know what a picky eater he is. If he likes them then I guarantee you will too!


    If you try them be sure to let me know how they turned out.

    Friday, August 8, 2014

    High Five For Friday!

    It's been a long but good week even though I have been sick. So let's take a look back of the last week.


    1) My dad's family had a get together over the weekend. I was able to spend time with my aunt Janet. She has lung cancer and has had a really tough time here lately. I am so thankful I was able to spend time with her.

    Photo was taken a few weeks ago. My camera was acting up on me so I couldn't upload my newest pictures from the weekend. From Left to Right: Dad, Raylan and I, Right: Aunt Janet.




    2) My dad bought Raylan a little red wagon in which he loved. Sometimes I think my dad spoils him a little too much.





    3) I have either a Summer cold or just really bad allergies going on right now. I haven't gotten much done. I've mostly been laying around the house, but I did manage to do quite a bit of reading.  I'm currently reading The Redemption of Callie and Kayden by Jessica Sorensen. It's a two part book. The first is called The Coincidence of Callie and Kayden. I have also read The Secret of Ella and Micha which is by Jessica Sorensen as well. If you haven't read any of her books, I suggest that you do. She is an amazing author.

    Of course I had to have my coffee too :)




    4) Since I have been under the weather, my wonderful Friend Linda stopped by yesterday with these delicious brownies. It made my day. It's nice to know that people still do random acts of kindness.





    5) Last but certainly not least, Raylan reached two milestones yesterday. He learned to reach for me and others as well. He also learned to give lovins. If you say "give me lovins"  he will put his little cheek up against your cheek. Here is a photo of him giving my dad lovins!

    I love my baby boy so very much :) He is my whole world. He can always put a smile on my face!


    Well that's a wrap...I'm linking up with Lauren Elizabeth
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    Thursday, August 7, 2014

    The Liebster Awards

    Tiffany at Bright on a budget nominated me for the Liebster Award. The Liebster Award is a way to discover new blogs and learn a little more about each other. My nominations are at the end of the post, so be sure to check out Tif's blog and their blogs as well.


    Random facts about me.


    1) I've been a Christian since I was 10
    2) I sing solo in church
    3) I have a soon to be 6 month old son
    4) I married my high school sweetheart
    5) God and my family are very important to me. They always come first.
    6) I love to read
    7) I can't go a day without coffee
    8) I'd rather vacation in Tennessee any day than the beach (Don't judge me because I'm a country girl lol)
    9) Hocus Pocus is my all time favorite movie
    10) My husband thinks I'm weird because I dip my pizza in ranch dressing
    11) I decorate cakes
    12) I have a huge love for all things primitive



    My #4


    Tif's Questions


    1. Who's been the biggest influence in your life?
    ~My Mother

    2. What are you most proud of accomplishing?
    ~Becoming a mother and a Respiratory Therapist (even though I'm not a practicing therapist at the moment)

    3. Prince Harry or Prince William; why?
    ~Prince William because I love reading about Prince William, Kate and Prince George

    4. If you could only shop one clothing store for the rest of your life, what would it be?
    ~Maurices

    5. What's your favorite Etsy shop (feel free to give a shout out to your own if you have one!)?
    ~ I have two! CreationsbyJLynn and  vboster

    6. What's the one thing you said you would never do, but you did it anyways? (Note: as soon as I say I would never do something, it usually happens.)
    ~ I said I would never quit my job but I did to be a stay at home mom and I definitely don't regret it.

    7. Sephora or Ulta; why?
    ~ I really can't answer this question because I've never used either (I know it's sad to say)

    8. Soda, pop, or cola?
    ~pop. I prefer pepsi pop lol

    9. All-time favorite nail polish color?

    10. Apple or Samsung; why?
    ~Apple because where we live we don't get very good reception and Imessaging comes in handy

    11. Favorite TV series on Netflix?
    ~Melissa and Joey

    Part of my #2 Photo credits of Precious Moments Photography




    ***Nominations***
    You don't have to participate, but I hope you will:)

    3) Vicki @2 bags full
    4) Whitney@Polka Dotty Place
    5) Katie@Cup of Tea

    My Questions for the Nominees, Should They Wish to Accept:

    1) Who is your biggest supporter?
    2) Who helped mold you into the person you are today?
    3) The Voice or American Idol?
    4) Reeses or Butterfinger?
    5) Pepsi or Coca Cola?
    6) Where is your most favorite place to visit?
    7) Where is your dream vacation?
    8) Cats or Dogs?
    9) What is your favorite season?
    10) Who is your favorite Author?
    11) What is your favorite restaurant?







    Monday, August 4, 2014

    Bathroom Vanity Makeover


    I love a good DIY project and I love to save money. With a new baby, I have formula, diapers, wipes and other necessities to buy. So things for my son comes first.
        
    When we bought our mobile home we bought it used. My husband and I have completely remodeled our home. However the bathroom vanities have yet to be remodeled until now. Let's face it. My bathroom vanity was an eye sore!

    I was so ashamed when anyone would go into my bathroom. So I decided my vanity needed a facelift. Instead of spending hundreds of dollars on a new vanity, I thought of contact paper.



    $ 6 a roll at Walmart, Dollar Stores and several other stores.You can't beat that!


    Other than contact paper you will need a ruler or tape measurer and a good pair of scissors.

    Make sure to measure the exact size of cabinet doors as well as the rest of vanity. Measure and cut to size. It will make applying so much easier.


    You will also need a sock and some type of card that resembles a credit card.

    The card and sock are used to smooth out wrinkles when applying Contact Paper. Gently run the card up and down and from side to side. Then rub the sock all over surface were paper is applied.


    To successfully apply without paper falling off, make sure to barely remove backing of Contact Paper. DO NOT remove all at once or you will have a big sticky mess with wrinkles galore!!!





    This project took about an hour and I must say I'm pretty impressed with the results. I have what looks like a new bathroom vanity for $6. It sure beats hundreds of dollars. The good thing about Contact Paper is that it is removable and it comes in a variety of colors and designs. If you get tired of one design you can always remove paper and re-apply with a new design for only $6.




    Here is the end result....

    What do you think???