* Last Chance * FREE: Amazon First Reads Book for April

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THIS MONTH’S PICKS


Contemporary Fiction


Thriller

 


 Science Fiction

 


Biography


Historical Mystery


Memoir


Please note: Kindle Unlimited subscribers can borrow these Kindle First books when they are officially released next month.


Not a Prime member?  You can try it FREE for 30 days here.

Also, if you have a student, they can get Amazon Prime for half off!


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What’s for Supper? Weekly Meal Plan 04.23.18

This past week I didn’t do too bad.  I actually cooked four nights (if you count frying hamburgers as cooking – and I DO because I have to be in my kitchen) with only one night of frozen pizza.  Yay for me!

Here’s what we ate last week.


Monday – April 16

  • Hamburgers  – as per usual!
  • Chips
  • Pickles
  • Raw onions and tomatoes Yum:)

Tuesday – April 17

  • Soup beans with cornbread or rice
  • Salmon
  • Roasted cauliflower, onions, brocolli and potatoes
  • Macaroni and cheese

Wednesday – April 18

  • Homemade Potato Soup
  • Bacon
  • Biscuits

Thursday – April 19

  • Leftovers!

Friday – April 20

  • Wild Mike’s frozen pizza – It was actually pretty good!

Saturday – April 21

Sunday – April 22

  • Leftovers

What did you eat last week?  What are you going to eat this week?  Inquiring minds want to know!

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Declutter With Me: My Nightstand

As we have already established over here in Tracie-land, I am a piler.  If it’s a flat surface, my brain takes that as an opportunity to find something to put on it.  My nightstand is a perfect example.  I have things on it that I actually want on there and that are useful to me.  My lamp, an art piece that Liva did for me, a book that I’m currently reading as my go to sleep book, you get the idea.  But I also have deposited things that have no business being there because all they are doing is calling to other things that have no business being there either.

By the way, if you know where you can buy antique keys (the metal piece that hold the mirror onto the dresser) please let me know.  I bought this little dresser at my Goodwill about three years ago for $7.00.  Can you believe that?  If it was for sale today they would put $50.00 on it.  When they loaded it into my car, they lost one of the keys, so for the past three years, it’s had a screw in it.  I’ve already checked my local mom and pop places, my True Value and all of the antique stores around here.  Never mind!  I asked Mr. Google as my uncle Wyatt says and found a place that I think might have one!

Isn’t this great?  Liv did this for one of her watercolor projects in Art this year and she gifted it to me when she got it back.

I also love this guy.  I have no idea how he survived the kid’s childhoods, but he did.  I think we found him at a flea market years and years ago.  It reminded me of the one that we had when I was in Kindergarten.   I cannot imagine making something like that with 25 five-year-olds, can you?  My Kindergarten teacher was the best.  Love you, Mrs. Crabtree!

Yes, that’s a baseball bat in the corner of my bedroom.  Don’t you keep a baseball bat by your bed?

You all know my love of baskets, especially baskets that have lids.  One of the downfalls about them though is that you can close it and forget about it.  Well.  I closed this one before Christmas.  Let’s see what I haven’t missed.

Good grief.  I have looked everywhere for my change purse.  Except in this basket. 

A shoehorn, candy, purse-sized hand sanitizers, a bookmark, a shell that belongs in Liv’s room and Barbie accessories which haven’t been played with in – oh – eight or so years.  Oh, and a string, since that really belongs there.

My missing change purse, pens, my fake leather pen holder that holds my pens so they are not lost in the abyss, tissues that belong in my purse, a flashlight I’ve been searching for and the screws to hold my footboard onto my bed frame.  Yet another project that needs to be completed.

The sleeping mask that I obviously haven’t missed,  two different body lotions that I thought Liv had confiscated, my cocoa butter petroleum jelly I use as lip balm that I have turned the house upside down looking for and a reed diffuser that I bought in July 2017!

Last but not least, my flashlight that has a dual purpose that I thought was gone forever and a one hundred dollar bill.  Do places where you shop take $100 dollar bills?  Even our McDonald’s won’t take them – actually I don’t think they will take $50’s either.  I’ve had this one lurking around since before Christmas, needing to take it to the bank and have it changed out for smaller bills because we literally can’t spend it.  Isn’t that crazy?  I could spend it at our Wal-mart, since they are the ones who gave it to me in the first place as cash back, but it’s just not worth the hassle I would go through.  You would think I was trying to use a coupon!  Heaven forbid.  But that’s a completely different story.  * FYI – don’t try to use coupons at Wal-mart.  *

So I’m sorry basket, but you’ll have to go live at someone else’s house now.  Have you decluttered anything lately?  Did you find something that you thought was gone forever?  Do tell!

Here are the books that are part of my To Be Read pile in no particular order:

Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin

You Can’t Go Home Again by Thomas Wolfe

Ask Suze….About Wills and Trusts by Suze Orman

One for the Money by Janet Evanovich

Calamities & Catastrophes by Derek Wilson

Yes, Please by Amy Poehler

Beautiful Creatures by Garcia & Stohl

Beloved by Toni Morrison

Have you read any of these?  What should I hurry to read next?

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DIY Project: Back Porch Light Fixture

NOTE:  I am NOT an electrician.  I’m sure there is an electrician somewhere on earth reading this right now and cringing.  I just like to do things myself.  If you do not feel comfortable working with electricity – don’t.


I love when I find things at yard sales or thrift stores for a great price.

I found this beauty at my local goodwill for $4.99.  In 2016.  Good grief.

See the date above the price?  Do you want to know how long it took me to change out the fixture?  Three minutes.  Or it would have taken me three minutes if the stupid mounting plate that was in the original fixture matched the new one. So in actuality, it took me twelve minutes to completely change the mounting plate and the fixture.  This is another example of my brain convincing me that “that’s going to take forever“.  Light fixtures are easy people!

Here’s what we started with.  I know.  That’s gross and disgusting and I should clean it.  There was nothing wrong with it other than the fact that it is 23 years old – I just don’t like it.

I do like this, however.  Isn’t it pretty? 

Like I said, light fixtures are easy.  First things first.  Before you begin dismantling your original light fixture, make sure that your breaker is off. Even if you know you turned off the correct breaker, test it out by trying to turn the light on. This is usually a quick way to make sure you turned off the correct breaker. However, for safety’s sake, you should still use a voltmeter to test the wires when you remove your original fixture before you touch them.

Then assess if your original fixture plate will fit the new fixture.  Mine didn’t.  To remove it, unscrew the two screws holding it to the wall.  Easy.  Screw the new plate to the wall in the exact same place and run the wires through and connect like with like.

I always connect the ground wires together first and wrap it around the ground screw.  It’s that odd greenish blue screw.

Next, connect the white wires.

Finally the black wires. Place the new fixture over the protruding screws and screw them down.

Lastly, hunt down the Deep Woods Off spray so that you can sit outside and admire your new light fixture.  Mosquitoes love me, unfortunately. 

You can see all of my other DIY projects with the link below.  Go change a light fixture!

All of my  other DIY Projects

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*Expired* FREE Friday Download from Kroger. 04.20.18

If you have a Kroger (on the East coast and Fred Meyer on the West coast) you can score a FREE Kroger Kettle Chips.  You have until May 6, 2018 to use the coupon, but it must be downloaded TODAY.

FREE Kroger Kettle Chips

If you like this post, please share it!

What did you miss? See previous Free Friday Download posts here.

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Grocery Shopping Trip 04.16.18

Do you see that!?!  That’s it.  I am so proud of myself.  I haven’t brought home an amount this small on a weekly grocery shopping trip in…… ever.  And you can see most of it is vegetables and fruits.  Yay!

Are the avocados in your part of the universe horrible right now?  Everywhere I’ve looked they are absolutely terrible.  At Wal-mart yesterday they had two kinds.  Rotten and rock hard green, which never ripen no matter what I do to them.  Wal-mart is also the only place I can get the plain Wholly Avocado mini cups.  Food Lion and Kroger only carry the ones that have stuff added to them, which no one at my house likes.  We eat a lot of avocados here.

I love having my upright freezer in the garage.  I told Denton that it’s the best present he’s EVER bought me.  I love it that much.  I stock up on meat and other things when I find them at rock bottom prices and I don’t have to worry if this week all of my grocery stores have ground chuck for $4.99 lb.  Because I bought it at $1.99 lb and put it away in my lovely, giant friend.

Lori, my cousin/sister/best friend (she’s all of those in my mind) said once that husbands should never buy you anything with a cord attached as a present, but I have to say I am making this an exception.  However, I also love my pressure washer…….

Anyway, here’s what we spent this week!

Wal-Mart  $91.65                Total spent for the Year:  $1,419.33

  • Got back this week:                            Got back for the year:
  • ibotta  $0.25                                            $13.45
  • Checkout 51 $0.00                                 $0.90
  • Receipt Hog  57 Coins                           328 Coins
  • Walmart Savings Catcher$0.00       $0.00

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What’s for Supper? Weekly Meal Plan 04.16.18

Wow, did it storm at your house last night?  In our area we had very, very heavy rain all evening and night.  The river is as high as I’ve ever seen it in the almost eleven years we’ve lived here.  Spring is here!  Our street looks like a movie set.  When the new neighbors up the hill moved in I don’t think whoever put in their driveway knew what they were doing.  Every time it rains it washes rocks and mud down the street.  Well, this time there is mud, rocks and boulders the size of a softball stretching over a good 200 feet of the street.

That’s your current weather update, here’s what we ate last week.


Monday – April 9

  • Hamburgers
  • Chips
  • Grapes
  • Raw onions and tomatoes

Tuesday – April 10

Wednesday – April 11

  • I have no idea.

Thursday – April 12

  • Chicken and yellow rice
  • Roasted veggies (potatoes, onions, broccoli and cauliflower)
  • Corn muffins
  • Coleslaw

Friday – April 13

  • Leftovers

 

Saturday – April 14

  • Pizza Hut and a giant salad

Sunday – April 15

  • Leftovers!

What did you eat last week?  What are you going to eat this week?  Inquiring minds want to know!

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All the Things. 04.14.18

As always, you can click on the photos to take you to items like these!

It’s finally yard sale season in my part of the universe again!  Woohoo!

You know the post I did yesterday about all the stuff that I took out of our house to the Salvation Army?  Yeah.  This isn’t that kind of post.  This is a post where I show you NEW to me stuff that I brought home with me!  Just keep in mind that I took 150 things away from our house yesterday and then count the number of things that I brought back in.

Justification.  Isn’t it great?  Here are the treasures I found.

Clothes are not my thing.  But, I do love my purses.  I constantly fall in love with a new one – all the time.  It’s a good thing I love yard sales or Denton would have to get another job to support my love of purses.  My brother told me once that he doesn’t want to wear anyone else’s name on his clothes.  I totally get that.  But, since Tommy Hilfiger trademarked my initials, I figure that I’ll let this one slide.  I found this one for $1.00.  Yay!

My love for candles is still going strong even though we have jumped on the diffuser bandwagon with the rest of the world.  Batman’s propensity to set himself on fire though has tremendously cut back on candle burning in our house.  I love these.  They are the battery powered flickering wax candles.  I really liked this pattern.  They were $2.00 for both.

Love them!

I stopped at a church yard sale where I found these little beauties.

Liv really loves stones and crystals of any kind.  I believe that these may be jade.  I am guestimating, but I think there may be a couple of hundred in this bag.

Remember when I talked about my hoard of magazines?  I showed you my copy of Uncle John’s bathroom reader.  Well, Denton comes down the hall the other day and asks me where I got that awesome book in the bathroom.  He loves it.  It’s been in our bathroom since last October and he just now noticed.  Anyway, I found this one for $0.50 and it’s going in his Christmas stocking this year.  Don’t worry, I guarantee he won’t read this, so I’m safe.Has your GPS ever gotten you lost?  Ours has.  We got off the interstate one day to have lunch and it decided to recalibrate its brain and that was that.  So.  I have decided that every single car we own will have one of these beauties.  I will always trust an atlas over a computer gadget any day.  $1.00 from our library.Dishes.  If it’s not books taking over my house it’s dishes and glassware.  I love these.  I have quite a bit of Princess House, but I don’t think that’s what these are.  I’ll have to ask Denton’s Mama.  She could curate for the Smithsonian, she is that knowledgable.  But, it doesn’t matter to me if they are real or not.   I love them.  And I will use them.  $1.20 for ALL of them!After I finished with the yard sales I stopped in my library to grab a few books and what did I find?  More beads and things.  I found YARDS of silk cording, clasps, beading needles, and all sorts of beautiful beads for me and Liv to play with.  When he added it all up it came to around $14.00, but he said since I bought so much they were giving out discounts and only charged me $10.00!  I think that we will give it about a week to see if anyone else wants to buy any of it, and then I’ll go back and buy the rest.  I never want to deprive anyone else of trying something new, so I’ll wait and see!

That’s it for our first real weekend of yard sales.  I am so pleased with what I found.  That’s the thing with yard sales, you never know what kind of treasure you will find.  Did you find anything cool at a yard sale yet this year?  I would love to hear about it!

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