Jul 262012

Oh. My. Gosh.

Have you ever been sick of spending money? [Stupid, right?] I am there now. I don’t want to go to the grocery store. I don’t want to finish Sweet C’s room. I don’t want to have our master [finally] painted. I’m just over it.

My root cause mind wants to know how I got here. Here is a little jot of what I think may have happened…

  1. New coupons are rolling out and they are low value, like $.75/2 or $1.00/3. Don’t get me wrong, these coupons are great if you can stand to have three boxes of the same cereal and eat them all before they expire… or you have a family of 3+ who actually can take care of the stock quickly. We can’t, wasted money.
  2. We just purchased 40 pounds of delicious 93/7 ground beef from Zaycon… beef isn’t free, you know?
  3. Refinancing a home to a lower interest rate takes a lot of mullah up front, so our savings looks pretty weak right now. [PS, if you are at 6% or higher, now is the time to think about re-financing, especially since the PMI rate was currently reduced] That’s frugal news, you’re welcome. We used Cornerstone Mortgage, they are awesome, email me for their contact info!
  4. My Sweet C’s room is still a disaster. We have made progress – there is a bed, desk and mirror – but there is still so much to do and I prefer for her to come home to a calm area and not a construction zone. She is my delicate flower. One thing at a time, I know, but I want it done now. I’m so silly, I told her I would make her this ruffle throw, I haven’t even purchased the sheets to make it and she will be home on Aug 1. GUH!
  5. Christmas is just around the corner and I have already started shopping, there are TONS of great deals right now on items that I know will be utilized for gift giving. Today, I received an email for $20 off $75 to Vera Bradley, all the rage with the teens and tweens right now. There was a fantastic deal on Groupon over the weekend that I hit up for my brother and B, I’d tell you, but then they would know… what’s the fun of Christmas if you know your gifts?
  6. I have the slight sense that my beautiful, amazing, most wonderful car in the world might be kicking the bucket soon. It hurts my heart. Maybe from all the above, this is the one that gets to me the most. I bought her as a wee baby, just barely old enough to cruise the open roads. We have had a lot of ups and downs and, knock on wood, not one accident; I can’t stand the thought of losing her. It. Is. A. Car. But I paid for her, by myself [my awesome Dad co-signed], I fed her gas, I took her shopping… and to the shop. ::tear::
  7. Finally, my babe. My husband is the bomb. He works so hard for our family. He has provided the income to be able to take fun trips and enjoy the little “luxuries” like dates to Chocolate Bar, volleyball camps, massages, and much more. I feel like I [and Sweet C] have indulged in many luxuries while my husband has been working his tail off; he would argue that this is exactly WHY he works, for us to enjoy ourselves. I love that guy and I tell him I appreciate him every chance I get, but rewards are nice too. Love Languages.

So, you ask, how do I work on these items? Stop Spending. Pray thanks for our abundance. And then sell/donate something… or a lot of somethings.

I am on Facebook, did you know? My personal page is linked to about 7 different Beg, Buy, Barter and Sell groups in my general area. Have you heard of them? No? Well, imagine Craigslist, but extremely local, and people are more willing to meet up instead of making you come to their house [sometimes creepy]. Right now I am trying to sell this awesome Desk and Delta Shower Set; I have them posted on Craigslist and BBBS and have had quite a few hits but not the right buyer yet. Wah! These will help finish up my Sweet C’s room, so I am hoping they are sold quick.. August 1 is fast approaching. Oh, I also have a pair of roller hockey skates for sale, awesome right?

This past weekend I went out with my mom and sister [bro's gf] and purchased a few new t-shirts to upcycle into scarfs/necklaces and let me tell you, I found the most scrumptious XXXL blue t-shirt, check out SweetgumWay soon for new postings! 

Also, I have a few designs on Zazzle that are worth taking a look! I love them all, but I guess any mother would love her own creations, especially my Eat. Pray. Run. repeat gear! :)

You can see, I am in a pickle. Don’t be surprised when you see a lot of homemade posts popping up within the next week or two. Remember the sweet string art I made for My Sweet C? Well, she changed her room color to pink and black, so you’ll for sure be sing another string art, because she LOVED IT… but in pink, maybe. GUH!

What about you? Have you been in this type of “I’m sick of spending money” situation before? What has helped you out and what did you sell/make to get a little extra cash in the bank?

 Posted by at 10:20 am
Oct 262011

I’m still here friends! This fiscal year end is pretty stellar… stellar in the fact that it takes every waking minute that I am at my business computer… which is a lot since I am lucky enough to get to work from home. I :heart: my job in SO many ways.

I wanted to send you a little plug for all my endeavors.

I have finally added a few items to my Etsy Shop, check them out:  OH and shop before October 31 and all proceeds will be allocated to my Avon Breast Cancer Walk AND there is a 15% discount code that can be found in my shop’s profile!

Also, I created Eat. Pray. Run. repeat and God Bless America items on Zazzle; I love the Eat. Pray. Run. Women’s Tshirt, I actually bought my own product! I usually wear it on Tuesday’s when we take our daughter out to dinner or on the weekend when we are seeing friends, family and participating in sports. The t-shirt is so soft and fitting that I think I would wear the t-shirt everyday[even if it didn't have print on it]. LoL!


 I hope you are enjoying beautiful Fall weather and gearing up for Monday – the kid’s are going to be out fierce-like, I can feel it!

 Posted by at 5:50 pm
Sep 282011

Band of Bosoms - Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Houston

This year, I have committed to participating in my very first Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. I am very excited to walk with my cousin and friends from long ago – we are wives, mothers and daughters on a mission to end breast cancer.

It is a big commitment, one that will require me to spend the next several months training and fundraising, as if training for my upcoming marathons isn’t enough. Breast cancer is a big disease, one that affects far too many women and men, and I am determined to do everything I can to help put an end to it.

The money I raise will be managed and disbursed by the Avon Foundation Breast Cancer Crusade, a 501(c)(3) public charity, to help provide access to care for those that most need it, fund educational programs, and accelerate research into new treatments and potential cures. I will be just one of thousands of people that will walk up to a marathon and a half over a weekend, raising awareness of the cause and educating even more people.

I cannot do it without your help. Though I am required to raise at least $1,800 in donations, I plan to raise at least $2,500! I hope that I can count on your support.

You can make a donation to my fundraising campaign right here on the website by clicking “Donate Now“. If you prefer to write a check, simply contact me and I will send you the information and form. All of our sponsors will be mentioned on our Facebook page as well as their Logos on our Sponsor signs we bring to all out events. Any company whose donation exceeds $250 value will also be listed on our team t-shirts that we wear and sell.

As I prepare for this exciting event, I plan to update my Avon Walk page frequently so that all my supporters can follow my progress, so please visit often. While you are there, you might want to spend some time on the site to find out more information on why this event is so important, and the organizations and people that will be helped by the money we all raise.

Thank you in advance.

Follow my team’s success, get notice of our fundraising events throughout the year, or write words of encouragement on our Facebook page: Band of Bosoms.

From September 27 through October 31, all orders placed from SweetgumWay will be allocated 100% to the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer – Team Band of Bosoms! Did you know you can also score 15% off any purchase with SWEETGUM15! Keep checking back, new items will hit the market soon.

Also, for the Month of October, we will be holding weekly raffles for some awesome prizes. Every person who makes a $20 donation to any of our team members accounts, will receive one raffle ticket. For a $50 donation, you get 3! Raffles will be announced on Sunday of each week at the Band of Bosoms Facebook page. Most of these will be for local (Houston) venues.

 Posted by at 8:00 am
Aug 192011

Frugal Stepmom Blogiversary

Wow, two years fly by so quickly! I started this blog to share my family, faith, frugality and the funny things I do and say.

This past year has been a great experience of learning WordPress and setting up my apperance and fun new header.

I just recently received my first official prayer request, it was such an HONOR to be able to pray for you, girl! 

How about a recap of my favorite posts? Indeed!

My First Post EVER, it’s the bomb.

My Quest for a Smarty Phone, and losing. BUT #1 is finally paid off!

The Day I Got Free Tattoos from my little D, she is frugal too.

My Favorite Ornaments on the Christmas Tree.

Old Dale - Buffet Revamp is finally complete and awesome!

My Crafty Hour with Ninjas and with Sarah, my super Sister.

On to the fun stuff for you! My FIRST Giveaway EVER!

Brown Paisley Remy Tile

How would you love to win this cute Remy Tile + 50% off coupon code from Sweetgum Way + a Secret Bonus Gift!?

Remy Tile Collection

Give your home that warm and personal touch. Perfect for clipping your favorite dinner or cookie recipe, displaying your child’s [or grandchild's] most recent school picture or small art piece, as a commemorative gift for a new homeowner and much more. Prepared on a 6″x6″ porcelain tile with a classical beige and brown paisley design paper, covered with layers of decoupage medium and sealant and embellished with ribbons and clip.

To enter leave a comment with your first name, last initail and state you are from and what you will clip on to this cute Remy Tile!

For extra entries:

Like me on Facebook

Follow me on Twitter

Follow me on Pinterest

The Giveaway closes on 8/31/11 at 9:00am Houston time [CST]. The winner will be notified by email and publicly on the old blog-er-roo. You have two days to reply or another fantastic reader will be chosen.

PS. Want to purchase a Remy Tile [or any other item] from Sweetgum Way? Use code SWEETGUM15 to receive 15% off your purchase! Customs available upon request.

 Posted by at 9:00 am
May 162011

On Sunday, I participated in AlternaCraft with my Remy tiles, UPcycled necklaces and accessories and I had SO much fun! My neighbors, Diana from Poisonous Legwear and Amanda from Amanda’s Naturals, were amazing and very generous with information on their success. Thanks ladies!

My set up was pretty sweet, a lot of people stopped just to give compliment and ask about my display piece, I think I might start calling her “Miss Dale”. My tiles showed well, especially the America and Dot tiles – my two favorite! Maybe I just pimped them out more? Who knows… but, they are gone now! The UPcycled necklaces and flowers were a hit; many vendors there were selling vintage and vintage-inspired jewelry, but none like my cotton jewels, so I was in a unique niche.

AlternaCraft Display

Continue reading »

 Posted by at 11:19 am
May 062011

 welcome to sweetgum way bunting frame

Next weekend is coming so quickly and I am so excited to display my wares to the [non-cyber] public for the first time!

Bringing back its unique blend of indy crafts and creative show environment, AlternaCraft returns to Houston on Sunday, May 15, 12 to 6 PM at Boheme Café and Wine Bar. This event will feature a curated slate of local artisans and craftisians and a wide variety of handmade goods including: Housewares, Gifts, Handmade Jewelry, Remember Tiles, Artisan Stationary, Cotton Necklaces, Custom Vinyl Critters, Mini Monsters, Baby Wares, Original Photography, Handmade Soap, Re-Purposed Unique Garments, and much much more. AlternaCraft is free and open to the public.

Located in the quaint and lively Montrose area, Boheme’s refurbished historical building and 6,000 sf of garden is a perfect location for this creative outdoor market. Enjoy a $5 champagne tasting or indulge in a signature sangria or mojito at the Patio Bar. Coffee and snacks also available.

Boheme Cafe & Wine Bar
307 Fairview @ Taft St
Houtson, TX 77006

Parking available behind Boheme at Hyde Park.

 Posted by at 3:45 pm
Apr 222011

This bad girl has been resting ever so peacefully in our garage for the past 3 years… Have we even lived here 3 years yet? Well, it has been here since the day after we got here, at least. I have had really good intentions to clean her up and make her whole again ever since she came to live with us.

dalescraft buffet

There is a brass-like tag on the inside of the right door that says “Dalescraft Fine Furniture”, but I cannot find any history on the company, so it is getting the whole she-bangle work up to match my style: glued, sanded, primed, painted, distressed and waxed. Antiques Roadshow? Not for this gal.

fixing the broken leg

Step One – Fix the broken leg so it does not have to lay on B’s old quilt. [Side note: Have quilt dry cleaned after completion] Have you ever used Gorilla Glue? I have used it on this project, on my Remember Tiles, and my memo frames and I think it is the best invention for home repair since duck tape. It works on everything and a dab will do ya since the glue expands while setting up - it is really pretty amazing stuff and if you have not tried it, here is your recommendation. You’re welcome.

  Continue reading »

 Posted by at 4:10 pm
Feb 272011

Welcome to the end of windy February - B and I are spending the weekend on house work… painting and fertilizing, yay!

Yesterday, I ran in the ConocoPhillips Rodeo Run 10k, benefiting the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Scholarship fund. It was my first 10k race, and I won’t lie, when I passed the 5k turn off I really wished I was turning with them! It was really humid and people were walking all over the place so it was hard to maneuver at times. And, needless to say, that hill was a beast! I succeeded in finishing in 1:11, 11 minutes over my goal, but it’s better than 1:12, right?

Now, on to my resolutions update:

I am doing very well with eating breakfast every day, once you start, it is really hard to stop because a nice healthy breakfast gets you revved and ready for the day. Not to mention, I don’t want my 6 boxes of Special K to go to waste! I mean, I spent some hard earned cash on those babies.

Our neighbor’s orange tree

I had chocolate covered strawberries for breakfast on Valentine’s Day. That counts as eating fresh fruit, right? :) Sarah and I dipped them on Sunday night, so I say it counts. Grapes have been on sale at Randalls and Kroger this month, so that has realyl worked to my benefit. I like when HEB has the mini-grapes, they are really good on baby spinach salads with bacon vinagrette. I picked a lot of oranges from the neighbors tree before the hard freeze hit, they are all wrapped happily in our pantry for use in future Cuban and Brazilian inspired dishes. Not to mention, I usually have one with lunch that comes from the stash of unwrapped oranges – the ones that I pulled the caps off when shucking them from the tree. WHOOPS!

Extremely close to the liking of my car, except mine has 4 doors... HAH

Old Girl, my amazingly paid for and super fast korean sports car, had to visit the ER this month, she has set us back in our snow ball by dollar or three. We are making it work, we are still on track to pay off the other beast of a vehicle and take a much needed vacation to the beach this summer. COME ON SUMMER!

We have been playing volleyball with C a lot. She is trying out for the school team next year and she is super excited/nervous. She is such an amazing volleyball player and she has an amazing coach to build her up in strength and confidence. Her team played in their first tournament this month and they kicked booty, they played 3 sets back to back to back and won 6 of 7 matches. WTG Heat!

In my etsy shop – sweetgum way

sweetgum way is up and running. I am having a lot of fun making these decorative tiles, I love working with the different papers and fabric trims.

Live on the edge: I totally fixed the garage door all by myself. One night we came home from dinner and I noticed the door was not going up on both side at the same rate, “HALT!” I demanded. I inspected. The verdict: Two of the metal hinges were snapped in half. So I googled how to replace a garage door hinge, took pictures of the hinges, so I would forget which kinds to get, headed to Lowe’s for my loot and absolutely came home and save the world according to garage doors. Score one for the girls…

MacGyver's got nothin' on Me!

One thing I did not do in excess this month is coupon/grocery shop. I think I am burnt out, and now that the Extreme Couponers epidemic is out, it is getting more difficult to find that great deal to share. Luckily Mrs. Baird’s has been on sale buy one get one free on alternating weeks at Kroger and Randall’s, so taking/making sandwiches for lunch has been really profiable for the H family.

I am pretty sure that I am leaving something out, Ive tried to make updates through the month, but things happen… you understand right?

How are you doing on your New Year’s goals so far? I hope you find this as an encouragement to get back on the track if you have veered; your aspirations are very important to your life and legacy.

Happy end to February 2011 – Welcome March!

 Posted by at 2:10 pm
Jan 182011

My long awaited sweetgum way etsy shop is now open for business.

I have been working on this project for a little bit and I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do.

It all started with our back splash and has blossomed into a fun hobby for me to focus.

If you like, please let your friends know! If you do not like, please let me know what I can do to make this shop better, knowledge is power!

Thank you for your insight and support!

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 Posted by at 10:23 am