A Beginner’s Guide to Once a Month Freezer Cooking

Are you looking to save money by not dining out as frequently?  Do you want to feed your family healthy, home cooked meals, but you have a busy schedule that makes it difficult to do so every night?

If so, you may want to try once a month cooking (OAMC).

I have been cooking once a month for my family for nearly three years now, and I cannot imagine how I used to function when I had to cook a meal every night.  Once a month cooking removes most of the dinner time stress and can help your family have a more enjoyable meal time.
[Read more…]

Take Advantage of Free 2011 Reading Programs During the Summer

In just a few short weeks, kids will be out of school for the summer (some already are).  While kids are counting down the remaining days they have left in school this academic year and can’t wait for those summer days, many parents are counting down the remaining days for a different reason.  How can they keep their kids occupied and make sure they don’t lose all of the academic strides they made during the year?  One way is to take advantage of summer reading programs. [Read more…]

What Does Mom Really Want for Mother’s Day?

Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and restaurants are gearing up for the rush. Traditionally, Mother’s Day is the busiest day of the year for restaurants, followed by Valentine’s Day.  Having worked in the restaurant industry for several years, dining out on Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day is something I always avoid.  Though it may seem like a treat to take mom out to eat, waiting in line for hours only to be seated in a cramped space surrounded by other diners, only to have slow service by the waiters and chefs because they are backed up does not sound like a good time to me.

As a mom of three little ones, ages 6, 2 and 1, (yes, the last two are only 17.5 months apart), I would like a non-traditional Mother’s Day gift.  I am not asking for a meal out, or a diamond necklace. (Have you ever noticed how many jewelry commercials there are around Mother’s Day?).  In fact, this year I am asking for something completely free—time.
[Read more…]

Planning on Having Kids? Save the Nice Furniture for After They Grow Up

When my husband and I got married, we were beyond broke and did not have money to furnish our apartment with new furniture. Instead, we went to a thrift shop and bought a dining room table and two chairs for $25, and even that was a big purchase in our minds.  The rest of our furniture came from garage sales (two more dining room chairs) or as hand me downs from relatives.

When my salary increased and we had a little extra money, we chose NOT to upgrade our furniture.  Why?  Children.

While our children are cute and adorable, and we love them endlessly, they are little terrors when it comes to furniture.  I think all kids are made that way; it is in their fiber to be rough on furniture. [Editor: Yes, I can attest to that!]
[Read more…]