Before You Start Arguing About Hobby Lobby

VERY well written!

The Boeskool

…. Please consider a few things.

Q: Know what happens when fewer women have access to birth control? A: The number of unwanted pregnancies goes up. And guess what happens when there are more unwanted pregnancies…. You guessed it–More abortions. So there’s something to think about….

"The court, I fear, has ventured into a minefield." ~ Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg “The court, I fear, has ventured into a minefield.” ~ Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

You know what? The family who runs Hobby Lobby is probably really nice. I’ve never met them, but I’d be willing to bet that if my wife and I ate dinner at their house, at the end of the night we’d would walk out the giant front door, get our minivan from the valet, and while we were driving home we’d talk about what nice people they were (right after we’d gotten done talking about how ridiculously huge their house was). And you know what? The same is probably true for most of…

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Illustrations of Women by Carol Rossetti

Here’s a reblog that I just ❤ REAL messages featuring artwork of REAL women!

Project Naked

This is one of the reasons I love facebook and can’t quite give it up because I come across amazing things like this from the various pages I follow. This is the amazing work by Carol Rossetti, so simple yet so powerful! I wanted to share on the blog because I felt it so fitting and something a lot of woman will relate to. Also the illustrations are just too KICK ASS not to share.

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Posted with permission. Please go to http://https://www.behance.net/carolrossetti to see more of her amazing work!

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Summer: Free/Cheap Family Movies

The previous few years the movies have been free but times are getting really tough all around and now they are $1 a person.  Thanks economy!  While still about 70-90% cheaper than traditional movie tickets this is still a great deal and an awesome motivator (if you behave this week then we can go to the movies!).  A quick Google search should provide you with your local info.  For our area its the Werenberg Cinema, home of the extremely creepy whispers!  If you are unfamiliar watch this YouTube clip and listen for it!

Today we saw The Lego Movie and everyone had a great time.  Seriously one of the best family movies I have seen in a really long time but make sure to bring some tissues for those tears that sneak out at the end!

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Some tips I have found along the way with kids and movies:

*Don’t go at nap time- you are ASKING for trouble!

*Bring coats, esp if you or your little one usually get chilly in movies.

*We brought a small blanket today and that worked out great for the little one to snuggle up in when she got cold.

*Bring sippy cups to minimize spills.

*Ask for some extra popcorn bags to divide up a large tub of popcorn and water cups to split up drinks or simply just drink water and save more money!

*Get there early esp if you want to find seats together!

Money: Ibotta, Checkout 51 and Cartwheel Reviews

Thanks to Pintrest I found out about about the smartphone apps Ibotta, Checkout 51 and Target’s Cartwheel.  While you shouldn’t expect to become rich using these you can definitely add up the “chump change” for everything from cash to Starbucks frappachinos!

 

Ibotta

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This is my LEAST favorite and my MOST favorite of the 3 which is unfortunate because they offer the most rebates.  If they would update their imaging software it would be AMAZING.  The application itself works ok except you have to purchases EXACTLY the amount/type/number listed.  I have a large family and purchased the double pack of eggs.  You have to scan each item for the rebate you are trying to receive so when I scanned my eggs the app told me that it wasn’t a match according to the UPC.  The worst aspect of this app is the image capture for the receipt.  It’s HORRID.  Hold the camera flat, no flatter, now try to focus by taping AND take the photo.  When you have 12 sections to add this takes too much time and patience.  Why Ibotta?  Why?!  Checkout 51 has WAY superior image capturing software (more on that later).  Sign up HERE.

Pros

*LOTS of various rebates  from $0.25 up to a few dollars!

*Offers are sorted by store.

*Clean graphics.

* Hook up directly to your PayPal account for cash directly deposited!

*$5 for each person you refer!  (That person has to actually submit a rebate before you get credit!)

Cons

*Image capturing system is stuck back in 2002.  Remember those cruddy cheap digital cameras (like those little kids Barbie and Star Wars camera in the toy aisle!)?  It’s about that quality and just as frustrating to get to work properly.

*While I understand why they would want you to scan the item- it can turn into a pain.  One time we finished off a bag of PopChips before I submitted my rebates and I set the bag off to the side so I could do it in the morning.  Of course someone else in the house picked that particular time to actually throw something away!  So I missed out on the PopChips rebate because I had nothing to scan even though I had my receipt!

 

Checkout 51

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This receipt capturing software is awesome!  It auto-focuses beautifully and I get a clean, crisp image the first time every time!  There are a few drawbacks though.  Sign up HERE.

Pros

*Really easy to submit your receipt- software works flawlessly.

*After you scan your receipt you can use a check list to chose which items you are looking to receive the rebate for- do UPC scanning required.

*Offers rebates on general items mostly like milk, eggs, and bananas where the brand doesn’t matter.

Cons

*Only has one very small list- about 10-15 items per week usually.

*Upload your rebates IMMEDIATELY on the day you purchase them.  I just lost out because I went shopping on July 1st but its auto-resets every Thursday AM.

*No referral program.

 

Target’s Cartwheel

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Target has come a long way in the last 10 years!  Lots of extreme couponers LOVE the deals at Target and part of it is this app right here.  Sign up HERE.

Pros

*Includes discounts from everything from food to clothes!

Cons

*Usually displays the discount in percentages which is kind of annoying.

*You can only have a certain number of offers saved to your account- mine is currently 16 offers.

 

Health: Free Atkins Quick Start Kit

I have been a bad WLS post op patient- through having to leave my job in healthcare due to my RA, multiple surgeries, numerous prednisone scripts and all kinds of other life stresses I pretty much just eat whatever is cheap and easy to prepare.  I really need to carb detox and get back on track!  Even took the kids to the park today and walked the nature trail and plan on going back out with the older kids for a longer walk later after dinner.  I saw a post in one of the few support groups I frequent on Facebook and thought I would get some free samples, coupons and booklets!  Check out how many things you get in the kit!

 

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Get your own here.  Anyone else working on getting back on track this summer?!

Recipe: Semi Homemade Pizza

 

 

 

 

 

 

I planned on making fresh pizza dough but SOMEONE didn’t wash dishes like he was suppose to *cough teenagers cough*  So I grabbed some refrigerated pizza dough and went ahead as planned.  Pepperoni with fresh basil on one side and roma tomatoes, fresh basil and garlic on the other!

 

Quick Semi Homemade Pizza

*2 cans of refrigerated pizza dough

*jar of plain pasta sauce

*minced garlic

*fresh basil

*roma tomatoes

*2 packages of shredded Italian cheese

 

1.  Pop open the pizza dough and roll out onto a cookie sheet.  I always line mine with sil-pads to prevent sticking (obviously mine are well loved and used often!).  I follow the directions on the packs but pre-cook the dough for half the cook time so the crust is crispy and not soggy.

2. While the dough is pre-cooking cut up some roma tomatoes and fresh basil.  I am going to post a YouTube video on the best way to cut fresh basil- it will seriously make your life sooo much easier!)

3. Once the dough is pre-cooked spread a layer of pasta sauce over the top.  I added a spoonful of pre-minced garlic to one and spread that around to mix it together.

4. I used an entire package of shredded cheese on top of each pizza.  Then I topped the pizzas with their toppings and finished baking.

5.  Cool the pizza after cooking for about 5 minutes so the cheese doesn’t slid off the slices when you cut and enjoy!  Kid and hubby approved!

 

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Sorry for the MIA

The family and I went on vacation to St Louis and San Diego over the last weekend for a few days which totally kept me busy all last week getting ready.  Needed the last day or two to recover!  I have a pizza recipe to post though and should be back on track with the posting now!  I love this photo I took from the airplane to San Diego!

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Recipe: Roasted Chicken Alfredo and Fresh Salad

As I mentioned in the tacos post, I got a deal on a rotisserie chicken and this is how I used the 2nd portion of chicken.  I actually made this last night just so we could have tacos on Cinco de Mayo!

 

Roasted Chicken Alfredo & Fresh Salad

*1 deli rotisserie chicken (or roast your own!)

*head of lettuce

*2 jars of alfredo (Target brand today- they were on sale and I had a Cartwheel offer and a store coupon!)

*pasta (Barilla today- on sale for $1.00 and I had a $0.50 coupon that doubled so FREE)

*quarter of large onion

*minced garlic

*basil, salt, pepper

*lemon

Salad Ingredients

*head of lettuce

*shredded cheese

*basil

*baby carrots (I used about 10)

*roma tomatoes (I used 2)

*grated peel of one lemon

1. After the chicken cools down so you can pull the meat off without burning yourself (don’t wait too long or the skin will become a little hard to remove) I have found putting the whole chicken in a large, shallow serving tray helps keep this less mess.  Remove the skin- you won’t need it here.  I admit we just eat it…  Chicken skin is like my favorite part!  Bad for you I know but… eat it or throw it away (inconceivable!).  Start by ripping off the wings and legs and work the smaller pieces first.  Don’t really worry about the size of the chunks you just want to get as much meat as possible off the carcass.

2. Divide the meat into 2 equal portions (one for alfredo and one for tacos another night).  Take the head of lettuce and shred with a knife and do the same thing by dividing it in half and putting one half to the side (salad for with the alfredo).  Dice the onion.  I only had a half of an onion left so I diced it, used half and saved half.  Boil pasta per box instructions (I do the olive oil/salt method when making pasta for flavor and prevent sticking).

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3. Put in a skillet- chicken, onion, spoonful of garlic, salt, pepper, basil, grind of one lemon (I like using a plane grater), and lemon juice of that same lemon.

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4. Combine and cook until the chicken starts to turn golden on the outside and the onions are translucent.

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5. Add in sauce and combine well.  Drain pasta.  Divide into 2 portions (I am going to use some for a side dish of pasta salad later this week so not quite half and half but between a quarter and half) and put in 1-2 ladles of sauce just to coat the pasta.  Serve the pasta and top off with a ladle of the alfredo and chicken sauce.

6. For the salad just put all ingredients in the bowl and toss.  I put a small handful for croutons on top of the individual servings in the salad bowls.

7. Hawaiian King rolls were on sale and I had a coupon so I heated up a tray of those with dinner as well.  They were completely gone before everyone left the table!

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You also end up with a lot of prep work done for later in the week!  Bonus!

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Recipe: Happy Cinco de Mayo Tacos

Yes, I know Cinco de Mayo is kind of an inflated holiday most Latin people do not celebrate but I love tacos!  I have been a little MIA lately because I threw out my back a little over a week ago and been trying to nurse that injury.  On Friday when I went shopping I bought two 6- pack single serve Cokes (I use these when I have a headache or my blood sugar drops!) for $2.99 a piece and got $4 off a rotisserie chicken at the deli.  Here is my super quick and easy “make 2” dinners.  I was also able to prep for other meals by only using a portion of what I was prepping which helps when you are in a rush or not feeling well for those families on the go or who battle chronic conditions.

 

Pulled Chicken Tacos

*1 deli rotisserie chicken (or roast your own!)

*head of lettuce

*packet of Taco seasoning

*shell of choice (we have soft flour tortillas, crunchy tacos and tosada flats!)

*quarter of large onion

*salsa

*shredded cheese

*sour cream

*black beans

*canned corn

 

1. After the chicken cools down so you can pull the meat off without burning yourself (don’t wait too long or the skin will become a little hard to remove) I have found putting the whole chicken in a large, shallow serving tray helps keep this less mess.  Remove the skin- you won’t need it here.  I admit we just eat it…  Chicken skin is like my favorite part!  Bad for you I know but… eat it or throw it away (inconceivable!).  Start by ripping off the wings and legs and work the smaller pieces first.  Don’t really worry about the size of the chunks you just want to get as much meat as possible off the carcass.

2. Divide the meat into 2 equal portions (one for tacos and one for alfredo another night).  Take the head of lettuce and shred with a knife and do the same thing by dividing it in half and putting one half to the side (salad for with the alfredo).  Dice the onion.  I only had a half of an onion left so I diced it, used half and saved half.

3. Using 2 forks shredded the chicken into a “pulled meat” texture.  Add to a skillet.  Also add the onion and the taco seasoning as prepared on the package directions.  Cook at least until the onions are translucent.

4. Heat up the black beans and corn.

5.  Assemble your pulled chicken tacos!  Serve with margaritas.  Or if you are like me you don’t keep that stuff on hand and just have some cheap Sutter Homes Cranberry Lime Twist wine.  Whatever works for you!

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Things I Have Learned From My Social Media Experiences

I am a stay at home mom so I have lots of time to hang out on the internet.  I recently had some serious issues with members of a particular Facebook group (we all know each other in real life as well) and after making some adjustments to how I handle some things my life is MUCH more peaceful!  Just some things I have learned:

Keep your status updates and profile on Facebook PRIVATE.  You never know when and where they will be taken out of context and used against you.  Like for example, in court!

Refrain from posting too much personal information in your status updates.  I’m guilty of this in the past.  While saying your ex is a jerk is one thing getting into a flame war with his sister-in-law is something completely different….

Groups and forums are an awesome way to get advice, support and make friends.  It’s also a great source of unnecessary drama and stress.  Some suggestions:

  • If someone says something you don’t like, ignore it.  If they do it again, block them.  If they attack you, report to admin & block.  If you find yourself more stressed out from reading a particular groups post, unsubscribe.
  • We are all different and no one is perfect.  Going around and being a grammar nazi is super annoying and just going to cause problems.  Don’t criticize people for their opinions and choices.  It just reflects poorly on you.
  • Medical issues can be frustrating and connecting with others that have similar issues can be amazing.  Please don’t offer medical advice.  Most of us are not doctors.  Simply state “this is what I have tried and what happened” not “stop taking that medication and do this/take that”.

Don’t upload or post if you have had a drink or taken drugs (I’m talking about like pain killers and things like that!  I do not advocate illicit drug use! But don’t post about that stuff either!).  After taking a muscle relaxer, pain killer or had a glass or two of wine with dinner I have been a little surprised at what I have found the next day!

Know your kids passwords.  Set parental settings if necessary.  Don’t be afraid to put your foot down!  I recently requested my kids stop hanging out with a friend of theirs who was very foul mouthed and teaching the boys how to look up inappropriate things on the internet.  I’m happy to report the use of the term “teabagging” has stopped….

Be kind.  The world is already full of hate. Pick and choose your battles.

Do not engage in a flame war or indulge trolls.  Just laugh at their pathetic attempts for attention and go look at cute critters on Pintrest or Reddit!

Go look at cute critters on Pintrest and Reddit.  Especially cats!

Enjoy this little kitty slideshow!

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