Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Restless Hearts Book Review

I grabbed some more books from the free shelf at the library and one of them was Restless Hearts Larger Print by Marta Perry.  I am not sure which library this is from but it was next in my pile.  It used to be that I would read the oldest ones first and work my way through them but my piles have gotten crazy of the different books that I have to read through.  I probably have enough books piles on top of my bookcase to last me a lifetime.  I hope that I get through them all and can finally get rid of some of them but that is my weakness!!  I hate getting rid of books which is why I went to getting them at the library in the first place because I was supposed to return them!!

A search for her roots brought midwife Fiona Flanagan to Pennsylvania Dutch country—and made her wonder whether she should turn back. The area's mixture of Amish and English culture confused her, and her first encounter with local police chief Ted Rittenhouse didn't help. he'd thought she was breaking into her own office!

I hope that you check out this book for yourself and enjoy this half Amish and half English town that has both working together in mostly harmony.  Fiona moves to the town to start her midwife practice and to get to know her fathers side of the family.  Little did she know that she would also meet her mothers side who she has never met and hasn't spoken to since her mother left the small town.  She is stopped her first night in town by Ted Rittenhouse, the local police officer for breaking and entering because she got lost on the way to see her new home.  It was the first of many adventures for Fiona so make sure you read it for yourself to find out what happens but I promise you will enjoy the crazy ups and downs of this small town.

Monday, August 27, 2018

Menu Plan Monday 8/27

Chicken Fries, Chicken Wraps and homemade fries and tater tots
Chili and Cheese with Fritos
Grilled Chicken and frozen rice
Homemade Pizza

I can't believe how quickly a week goes by!  Monday we had my son's favorite dinner of chicken fries and french fries and even pulled out a bag of tater tots to enjoy while my husband and I had chicken wraps.  Tuesday was homemade pizza so we had pepperoni and buffalo chicken.  Wednesday came and I had taken nothing out of the freezer again so we went with leftovers!!  I made fried rice for my husband, I took out steaks for Thursday to enjoy as a wonderful treat with rice and green beans.  Friday we had family coming in so we had pasta but I decided to go with Cheese Raviolis and fried zucchini which was yummy (still made spaghetti for my son)!  Saturday was Chinese food from my favorite restaurant and we really enjoyed it and leftovers the next day for lunch.  We went to the pool until after dinnertime on Sunday so it was tempting to give up and order pizza but we went with quick leftovers where my son had some spaghetti and chicken fries and my husband had buffalo chicken pasta and I made a little chicken for me.  It wasn't the chicken I was planning on but we all had a little chicken so I will call this to plan!!

This week my son starts school and there are tons of things going on including the start of soccer season so we are going to be into the busy life right away.  I am hoping for a few easy meals so this should make it easy for me to get dinner on the table when we need it.

Friday, August 24, 2018

Beteween You and Me Book Review

I put a bunch of books on reserve a long time ago and this one was another that was chosen because I like the author.  I was interested in reading anything by the author but I haven't even figured out what was coming until it showed up on my reserve shelf.  Between You and Me by Susan Wiggs was the next in my pile to read.

Deep within the peaceful heart of Amish country, a life-or-death emergency shatters a quiet world to its core. Number-one New York Times bestselling author Susan Wiggs delivers a riveting story that challenges our deepest-held beliefs.  Caught between two worlds, Caleb Stoltz is bound by a deathbed promise to raise his orphaned niece and nephew in Middle Grove, where life revolves around family, farm, faith—and long-held suspicions about outsiders. When disaster strikes, Caleb is thrust into an urban environment of high-tech medicine and the relentless rush of modern life.
Dr. Reese Powell is poised to join the medical dynasty of her wealthy, successful parents. Bold, assertive, and quick-thinking, she lives for the addictive rush of saving lives. When a shocking accident brings Caleb Stoltz into her life, Reese is forced to deal with a situation that challenges everything she thinks she knows—and ultimately emboldens her to question her most powerful beliefs.  Then one impulsive act brings about a clash of cultures in a tug-of-war that plays out in a courtroom, challenging the very nature of justice and reverberating through generations, straining the fragile threads of faith and family.
Deeply moving and unforgettable, Between You and Me is an emotionally complex story of love and loss, family and friendship, and the arduous road to discovering the heart’s true path.

I hope that you check out this book because it was an amazing read.  I couldn't put it down which is horrible because I couldn't put the last book down and now I am in a horrible sleep pattern but I have read some great books.  Only pick this book up if you have the time to not put it down or getting anything else done.  I thought it was great and I was amazed at the writing and characters.  Caleb has left the Amish world when he got the call that his brother and wife had been in an accident.  Caleb came home to raise his niece and nephew.  It is amazing to see how he has changed his life to make the best life for his niece and nephew.  Things go a little crazy when there is an accident and a disagreement over treatment.  Dr. Reese Powell is on the ER staff and takes an interest beyond the initial operation when she sees Caleb standing in the ER because no one has helped him find his nephew.  Their lives all change in the blink of an eye and you have to pick up the book to find out how.  It was a great journey and amazing story.  I hope that you enjoy it as much as I have.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Cottage By the Sea Book Review

I reserved a bunch of books at the library and this one came on my shelf.  I knew nothing about Cottage by the Sea: A Novel by Debbie Macomber except that I liked the author.  I was excited to start reading it and find out more! Who wouldn't want to with a cover like that!!

Annie Marlow has been through the worst. Rocked by tragedy, she heads to the one place that makes her happy: Oceanside in the Pacific Northwest, the destination of many family vacations when Annie was a teenager.
Once there, Annie begins to restore her broken spirit, thanks in part to the folks she meets: a local painter, Keaton, whose large frame is equal to his big heart—and who helps Annie fix up her rental cottage by the sea; Mellie, the reclusive, prickly landlord Annie is determined to befriend; and Britt, a teenager with a terrible secret. But it is Keaton to whom Annie feels most drawn. His quiet, peaceful nature offers her both comfort and reprieve from her grief, and the two begin to grow closer.

Then events threaten to undo the idyll Annie has come to enjoy. And when the opportunity of a lifetime lands in her lap, she is torn between the excitement of a new journey toward success and the safe and secure arms of the haven—and the man—she’s come to call home.  In this heartwarming tale, Annie finds that the surest way to fix what is damaged within is to help others rise above their pain and find a way to heal.

I thought this was a great book!  I couldn't put it down and was excited when I got a whole morning to sit home and read it.  I thought it was so interesting and I had a hard time putting it down because I wanted to know what was going to happen next for Annie.  Annie went through a lot of guilt after her whole family died in a mudslide that took out her family home and she decided to take a vacation to someone to remember the good times.  In doing so, she quickly realized that she couldn't go on living the way that she was and she moved and set up a whole new life in the small town that she used vacation.  It was amazing to see how quickly she was healing after having so many problems before and you have to pick up the book to find out how she makes these changes.  I am sure you will be amazed at the way that the small town makes her feel better and safe like it did in her childhood.  I hope that you check out this book and enjoy for yourself!!

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

The Quilter's Legacy Book Review

I picked up The Quilter's Legacy: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel (The Elm Creek Quilts) by Jennifer Chiaverini at one of the libraries I think.  was  It was in my reading pile which is sadly getting way bigger then the speed which I can read so I was settled that I was going to get back to it.  I knew nothing about it but I was interested in finding out what it was about.  After I read the book and I was preparing for the review, I found out this book was in a series and this was book 5.  I normally look up that information first but it was easy to read on it's own without any problems so I didn't even think twice.

Readers of Jennifer Chiaverini's popular and engaging Elm Creek Quilts series are treated in each successive volume to storytelling that expertly weaves the joys and intricacies of history, quilting, and family ties. In The Quilter's Legacy, a daughter's search for her mother's treasured heirlooms illuminates life in Manhattan and rural Pennsylvania at the turn of the last century.
When precious heirloom quilts hand-stitched by her mother turn up missing from the attic of Elm Creek Manor, Sylvia Bergstrom Compson resolves to find them. From scant resources -- journal entries, receipts, and her own fading memories -- she pieces together clues, then queries quilting friends from around the world. When dozens of leads arrive via the Internet, Sylvia and her fiancé, Andrew, embark on a nationwide investigation of antiques shops and quilt museums.
Sylvia's quest leads her to unexpected places, where offers of assistance are not always what they seem. As the search continues, revelations surface about her mother, Eleanor Lockwood, who died in 1930, when Sylvia was only a child. Burdened with poor health and distant parents, Eleanor Lockwood defied her family by marrying for love. Far from her Manhattan home, she embraced her new life among the Bergstroms -- but although warmth and affection surrounded Eleanor at last, the Bergstroms could not escape the tragedies of their times.
As Sylvia recovers some of the missing quilts and accepts others as lost forever, she reflects on the woman her mother was and mourns the woman she never knew. For every daughter who has yearned to know the untold story of her mother's life, and for every mother who has longed to be heard, The Quilter's Legacy will resonate with heartfelt honesty as it reveals what tenuous connections bind the generations and celebrates the love that sustains them.

This book switches from generation to generation of the different people in the family to tell the story of the quilts . I thought it was really interesting to see the changes in the stories and lives of the people because it was really interesting.  The mystery of where the quilts have gone is amazing and I loved following along with the hunt for them.  I am not normally one for historical books but this one was really good and easy to follow with lots of great characters to pull for.  The biggest problem was that it just ended when I thought that there was going to be a little more wrap up.  I am assuming that the next book in the series will have the next steps but only time will tell.  I enjoyed the story and the characters in this book and I can't wait to see others in the series to get the rest of the story.  I hope that you enjoy this book as much as I have!

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Darling Daughters Book Review

I grabbed another book off the reading pile and got to read the book on our trip to visit family.  It was two short stories in the same book so it was fun to have two different books to read.  Darling Daughters: Yours And Mine\Lone Star Lovin' by Debbie Macomber was Yours and Mine and Long Star Lovin' short stories in one great book.  It seems when I look at the description that it was an older book that I was just lucky enough to find.

If you're a single parent and your daughters decide you should get married again, give up now! Especially if they appoint themselves your matchmakers...

Yours and Mine: Joanna Parsons is a single mother who insists that marriage is an experience she doesn't plan to repeat.  But her eleven-year-old daughter, Kristen, has different scenario in mind- and it involves Tanner Lund, her best friend's dad.  Both Tanner and Joanna are determined to resist marriage, but they've reckoned without their daughters...

Lone Star Lovin': He's a hardworking, good-looking rancher, but single father Cody Bailman has neither the time nor the patience for "courtin' a woman."  His twelve-year-old daughter, Heather, is determined to teach him about romance. She's got her eye on a physican assistant Sherry Waterman, who's "just perfect for Dad"!

I looked every where for the summary on this book and it wasn't available on Amazon, Good Reads or Debbie Macomber's own website.  I typed up the information on the back with a quick change on the second book because it was wrong on Sherry's title.  I really enjoyed the two stories and didn't even think about what linked the two stories together until writing this summary.  The first book was all about Joanna Parsons who decides that she is done with marriage but her daughter decides otherwise.  Kristen decides that Joanna would be perfect with her best friends dad, Tanner.  They work hard to keep them together and get the two married so that they can be sisters.  The second story is about Cody who has decided not to marry again after his first wife died.  His daughter Heather has decided to get him married and made a big production of trying to find him a wife.  The entire small town is in on Heathers plans and then Sherry comes into town and they click.  It is amazing to see how much they fight the attraction but fun to watch the ups and downs to the relationship.  I hope that you enjoy this book as much as I did.  It was a great short read with the two stories giving you a good breaking point.  I hope that you enjoy these short stories.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Menu Plan Monday 8/20

Chicken fries, Chicken Wraps, and homemade French fries
Pasta with Zucchini
Steak with white rice and garlic green beans
Homemade Pizza
Eating Out or Take Out ??

Last week we did Chicken Wraps and Chicken fries with homemade French fries, sweet potato tater tots, smiles, and more for Monday dinner.  I had my parents and one of my son's friends who stayed for dinner so I wasn't sure what to make so I made a lot.  I decided that it was good because I could plan to use the leftover chicken on a buffalo chicken pizza or for leftover night in something else.  I also used the chance to make chili on Monday because there was someone home all day with it while it cooked on the stove but it turned out that many picked at it so I put it out of the table on Monday night too.  I put some in the fridge and some on the freezer so we have another container to defrost later through the winter when the schedule is more busy.

Tuesday was a little bit of a mystery because my parents were leaving and the refrigerator is a mess so I decided on leftovers because we were going to be out all day with different library programs so I knew that I didn't have time to cook but we ended up doing chili and chopped salad with corn.  Wednesday was homemade pizza which was tasty.

Thursday ended up being leftover night which we used up lots of from the fridge before heading out to the pool.  Friday night I still hadn't taken anything out of the freezer to eat so we ended up making family fun night in front of the television with leftovers and a little bit of everything from the freezer.  Saturday I finally got the chicken out and I decided to do Chicken Stir Fry with Sesame Ginger sauce and garlic green beans.  We ate until we were stuffed because it was so yummy...although I barely got it defrosted so you might see a pattern here.  Sunday night we went to the pool and then we had Olive Oil Spaghetti with pan fried zucchini.  

I need to get the plan together a little more for this week but this is what I have so far..subject to change because my parents are coming back into town so I don't know what I am going to be making for all of us but I guess I will figure that out and do better about taking food out of the freezer!

Friday, August 17, 2018

July Reading Review

I was looking forward to getting a lot of books read on vacation like I normally do but that didn't happen this time around.  We were out and about a lot and had lots of things going on including the beach on at least 5 days and the boardwalk on at least 4 days as well as mini golf and more.  I sadly had another rough month with not a lot of books read.  I actually got to the end of the month and I don't know if I finished the last book before the end of the month or not because I do a lot of the middle of the night reading but I am putting it in there anyway.

I started thinking about why this was and I know that I only count the adult books that I read and not the kids books but those are starting to get much bigger like we read the Red Pyramid and others that were 500 pages but I didn't count those and we are started on another longer series so I hope that I am still reading just as much but more of it is spent on the children's chapter books and less on mine.

by Ashton Lee

by Richard Paul Evans

by Nicholas Sparks
(reread for book club)

by Amy Lillard

by Suzanne Woods Fisher

by Shelley Shepard Gray

In His Dreams
by Gail Gaymer Martin

Total Books 2018

January   8
February  10
 March    10
April     11
May      6 
June     5
 July      7

Total Read  57

Currently Reading:

Thursday, August 16, 2018

In His Dreams Book Review

I picked this book up at one of the libraries and had it on my large shelf of books to read.  I decided to read it since all my library books were already read and returned and no new ones where coming.  In His Dreams (Michigan Island, Book 3) (Larger Print Love Inspired #407) by Gail Gaymer Martin turns out it was the third book in the series but I thought it was a super easy read that stood on its own.  I would totally tell you to check out any part of this series and enjoy the great stories.

Escape to beautiful Beaver Island could be the answer to Marsha Sullivan's need for a fresh start. Since her husband's death four years ago, Marsha had lost her way, but on Beaver Island, she had good memories to help guide her. Running into Jeff, her brother-in-law, in this paradise turned out to be a blessing. Not only did they share grief in losing their spouses, but also a warm bond began to form between them. Did God want her to love again? The only thing she knew for sure was that being with Jeff and his daughter felt like family.

This was a great summer beach read which I didn't have until after the beach trip but it was still fun to read.  Marsha is headed to their summer getaway with her sister to start new after her husband's death four years ago.  She started out the trip by running into her brother in law and his daughter who also lost his spouse.  They had a bond between the two of them instantly and they felt a connection.  Although both felt like they were breaking their marriage vows, they couldn't deny that being together made them feel good.  They fought against it and found that they just wanted to enjoy what they had of the summer together.  You have to pick up the book to find out all the other twists and turns that happen over their summer enjoying the beach.  I hope that you enjoy this book as much as I did!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Middle of the Month August Shopping Update

I keep a monthly budget of $160 for our family of three.  I use lots of different ways to make it happen but mostly I shop sales and use coupons and buy all the things at the lowest possible prices to stretch our budget farther.  I also make lots of food from scratch including bread, rolls, and breakfast treats.  I buy things in season and freeze it to use later so that I have everything in the house to make whatever we need.  I am trying to focus on the freezer and pantry and using up the things we have because we spend a lot less time in the store for the summer.

I don't know where the summer had gone but it went quickly again!!  We tried to fit in as many things as possible into the summer including a week at the beach, lots of library programs, mini golfing, swimming in the pool, museums and time spent with family.  Lots of reading going on here with everyone in on these great books on CD that we listen in the car and can't stop when we get home so we continue while sitting in the house.  We have gone through lots of books and books on CD to complete the summer reading program.  Sadly some time for me in physical therapy but I am getting better.  I am exhausted and need everyone to go back to school so that I have a break.  I feel like I have made it to the store more often this summer then normal but this month was thanks to Christine.  I had a planned trip out of town when there was super doubles and there were so many amazing deals that I couldn't pass up.  She did an amazing job getting me lots of things that will last us a long time!

Aldi $28.58

I went to my doctors appointment and got lots because the Aldi's out there has way lower pricing so I stocked up which should last until our next visit to the doctor.

Harris Teeter $0.08

My son did this transaction and he gave the lady his stuff and his coupons and his reusable bags by himself.  He paid with change and got his money back.  She thought he was adorable.  He told her he liked candy and it was all for him.  He wanted to eat the candy before we left the store but he got as far at the car.

 Harris Teeter $2.11

I got these for a road trip that we were taking and they were tasty treats for the car!!

Harris Teeter $0.04

More free candy at a different store and I don't know why the price was different but my son was happy to hand over his  coupons and pennies to pay for his transaction!

Harris Teeter $0.93

I don't know what went wrong but the lady scanned some other car with my card so the evic pricing didn't come off.  I had to go to customer service to get everything fixed with the pricing and they were great! I also had a catalina to spend on other groceries later!!

Harris Teeter $0.04

I was at customer service for a long time so my son did another transaction so that I could get him to stop climbing on the customer service area like it was a ninja warrior course!!  

Harris Teeter $0.04

I went again to see if they had any stock in some of the other deals and to get ready for super doubles that I was going to be out of town for so I grabbed a few more candies!!

Harris Teeter $1.90

I turned over a list and a bunch of coupons to my friend Christine and she shopped for me!!  I was so sad to miss the first half of super doubles but she did amazing for me and I can't thank her enough for all the trips she made for me!! There should have been a catalina from this but it didn't print out.  I have a note written on the top of the receipt to get a $2 credit so I need to work on getting that!

Harris Teeter $0.54

An amazing deal on my son's favorite shampoos so we are super excited to have these!  They were free after sale and coupon so only paid tax.

Aldi $5.77

We were at dinner at my cousins house when I realized that I didn't pack the garlic salt to go with the pasta so my cousin's husband drove my son to the store to get that.  We also bought Parmesan cheese because they were low.  My son thought that was a perfect opportunity to ask for ice cream sandwiches which he got and enjoyed.  I didn't take a picture then but we have all the things at home so I put them together.  We now have enough garlic salt for a lifetime because we have at least three already at home!!

Harris Teeter -$1.37

Christine did this and said she isn't sure what happened but she got more things and the total was still crazy and coupons weren't doubled but it was in the negative.  It looks like the tea was rung up wrong but the cashier just gave her the money back after she added more things to the total.  I am happy to have tea since it is hard to find during super doubles.  The floss gave me another $2 catalina!!

Harris Teeter $2.23

Another great transaction by Christine to get free butter and $0.50 Bugles and the Hamburger Helper that I was doctor up to make some yummy meals this winter for a super fast meal before games!!

Harris Teeter $0.17

Christine got four folders and two Skinny Pops so these are all for my son.  I will put the folders in the school supply stockpile and the skinny pop went into the hidden cupboard for the start of school

Harris Teeter $0.23

Did you think that Christine could possible be a better friend because she got me these too!!  I am not sure about the different salsa flavors in this new line of salsa but I think that I might use it in salsa sloppy joes or something different to add a little different flavor. My family is picky about salsa and doesn't like when I mix it up but you can't pass up free can you?

Target $0

My husband went to Target to pick up cinnamon powdered sugar mini doughnuts which is a family favorite for vacation and we had tried three different kinds and not had good luck with the flavor of the others.  When they got there the shelf was empty and they had to wait for someone to restock but they only stocked a different brand.  They bought one to make sure it was good.  They determine it was and send me back to get two more.  They went so quickly that I didn't get a picture.  The best part is that I planned ahead and bought a gift card using free points from MyPoints to use for Target so it didn't cost us any money.

Harris Teeter $2.64

I am back for the second half of super doubles and the second sale.  It might have been a big jump back in with this trip but I had two catalinas burning a hole in my pocket so I went with big hopes of getting lots and boy did it get more then I thought I had coupons for (okay I had coupons for everything in my coupon basket but I didn't know what was on sale so I was winging it since I got home an hour before I went shopping)!! Free Colgate toothpaste, free Pillsbury rolls, free Ben and Jerry's slices, and free salsa.  The Frosted Flakes were $1 per box after sale and coupon.  The cookies were $0.89 after sale and coupon.  The Mario Bacon was $0.99 after coupon but I need it on hand for our new cheesy ranch bread.  The Cheez Its were shelf priced at $4.99 but they were buy 2, get three free so I got 5 and used coupons that I bought off Kellogg's Family rewards to pay $0.40 per box.  I used two of my catalinas which doubled and so I had very little out of pocket to pay for all these groceries.

Harris Teeter $0.10

I didn't know that these yummy treats were going to be free so when I found out, I made a special trip just to get them.  Great news is that my son doesn't like them so they are all for me!! He can eat all the skittles and starburst he wants and I have my yummy ice cream.

Harris Teeter $0.63

Another crazy trip trying to get all the deals in this time around but I wasn't sure what I would get.  I bought the coupons for the Cheez Its and the Pringles on Kellogg's Family Rewards and was happy they were in stock.  I got the Pringles for $0.25 each.  The Cheez Its were $0.40 per box.  I got free Pillsbury, Ben and Jerry Slices and the Crest.  The Crest was an even better deal because it gave $3 off instantly so it paid for the rest of the groceries so I only paid tax!!  Love the deals this time around.

Harris Teeter $3.00

I wanted to do the pepperoni deal because the shelf said $3.50 per bag of family sized pepperoni which is an amazing deal. The shampoo, pizza crust, skinny pop and crest was free.  There was a bonus $3 off when you bought 3 items from P&G so I used that to pay for some of the pepperoni.  The pricing didn't ring up correctly so I went back to customer service and they gave me back the difference and although I didn't get one free, I got an amazing deal on all that food.

Harris Teeter $0.48

I wanted to go back again later that night to use up the rest of the coupons that I had but I got a migraine and napped instead so I was printing coupons and getting organized for a trip first thing in the morning so that I could grab lots on the last day of super doubles!! I had a long list of things to get and it was the last day!!!  I went early at 6:30 am so that I could leave my son at home and shop in peace before my husband left for work.  Things were on the shelf and I couldn't be happier with the quantity of things that I got this time around including the pizza dough which we really love!  I realized that I had two coupons left that I didn't use and more coupon in my basket so I grabbed the last two things.

Harris Teeter $0.09

I grabbed my last two things with my last two coupons left and it was the last family pizza crust or I would have gotten another.  We have found that this is now our favorite one!!

Target $0

I order both of my son's vitamins at Target to pick up because it is sometimes hard to find them on the shelf in the same place and it has the added bonus that I can use PayPal and not pay any money out of pocket.

Harris Teeter $0

I went to Harris Teeter to get the free soda on my card and for my friend Christine because she was out of town.  I rang up mine first and it didn't come off which I have never had happen but the customer service person came the register and credited them.  I was looking for a different kind of soda but I am sure we will enjoy this one regardless.

Shoppers $0.03

I went to the store to get the free gum that was offered in the app.  I was a little sad that I forgot about making it there last week for the freebie but determined to be on top of this weeks!

Aldi $0

I went to Aldi because my mom needed something for salad and she said that she couldn't find it but then I sent my husband and father to look and they found it.  We were also almost out of milk which is something she uses a lot of so we grabbed another gallon.  My husband thought we needed eggs but we actually didn't need them but they won't go to waste.  My husband wanted bananas and turkey lunch meat so I grabbed those.  My son picked out the chicken fries and the ice cream sandwiches.  We needed mozzerella cheese if we were going to make more pizzas so I grabbed two more which I think should get us most of the way through the crusts that we have in the fridge now.  My mom picked up the tab for the groceries so there was no money out of pocket.

Total Retail $648.03
Total Savings $599.79
Total OOP $48.24

I think that have lots of back to school foods stocked up and the cupboards are so full!!  I even have things shoved in the laundry room which is my backup place to keep things off the counter.  I only turned in two rebates for any items so only $0.50 back in rebates so far for this month.  It doesn't always work out to a big money back but I spent so little money with the help of instant savings and catalinas that it didn't matter.  I used my gift card and PayPal money to go even further.  I actually paid my wonderful friend Christine with PayPal so it was even $3.70 less out of pocket but I am counting it so that it doesn't get even more confusing!!

Eating Out

We got take out from Little Caesars Pizza in Pennsylvania for $5.30 and fountain soda from McDonalds for $2.12 on the way back from our trip.  Our total eating out costs were $7.42 and we all enjoyed the amazing pizza which came with free cookies and free refills on our soda.  Wondering why things are so much tastier at the ones that aren't close to our house.  We have made a habit of getting that pizza because it is so easy when driving through town.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Her Fear Book Review

I was so excited to get to read Her Fear: The Amish of Hart County by Shelley Shepard Gray so I read it quickly and then totally didn't write the book review of it.  I have a pile of four books now to review because I am so far behind and my July review of all the books that I read back then... I have to figure out which books were July and which were August!! Anyway, this book was amazing and I think that everyone should take a break from their summer to read it!  I have read all the other books in this series and I have loved them all even though they are so different and unique from other Amish fiction. 

In New York Times bestselling author Shelley Shepard Gray’s latest novel of suspense in her Amish of Hart County series, an EMT falls for a woman with ties to an Amish community where people are dying similar, suspicious deaths.  Sadie Detweiler never imagined she’d move to Kentucky, yet here she is: a pregnant, unmarried Amish girl banished by unforgiving parents to live with kin she barely knows. The men are gruff and her cousins are secretive. Worst of all, elderly matriarch Verba becomes mysteriously ill shortly after Sadie moves in. When EMT Noah Freeman arrives, Sadie immediately notices he’s unlike any other Amish man she’s met. Noah is warm, confident, and has an easy way with practically everyone in the community, both Amish and English. Though Sadie is drawn to him, she has little hope he will reciprocate her feelings once he learns she’s with child.
Noah can’t understand how a girl as sweet and lovely as Sadie ended up sleeping on a cot in Verba Stauffer’s kitchen. He also senses Sadie is terrified of something. Concerned, he checks up on her. Eventually they strike up a friendship and soon their attraction is undeniable. When Verba later dies at the hospital and her death is followed by two others, Noah’s boss wants him to dig around the Amish community for clues. He agrees—for Sadie’s sake—because only the truth will keep her safe and by his side.

Sadie is forced to moved to Kentucky to live with distant family that she doesn't know when she ends up pregnant before marriage and her boyfriend denies that it is his.  It breaks her heart but her parents believe him over her and send her away.  She is living in a house with lots of secrets and she is just trying to stay quiet so that she has a home to have her baby in.  Sadie stops thinking about the future and what her life is going to be like and only focuses on the baby.  Then she meets Noah who is an EMT who happens to be Amish.  Noah instantly feels a connection to Sadie and can't stop trying to find out what is going on.  You have to pick up the book to find out what happens but I think that you will enjoy the quick paced book that is hard to put down.  There are so many different topics covered in this book that are so different then other Amish fiction books.  I hope that you enjoy this book as much as I have and check out the rest of this great series.

**I received a copy of this book for my review but all opinions here are my own.

Monday, August 13, 2018

Menu Plan Monday 8/13

Chicken fries, Chicken Wraps with homemade fries
Chicken with rice
Homemade Pizza
Salsa Sloppy Joes with mac and cheese
Chili on Fritos with cheese
Leftovers and Chopped Salad

This week we are picking out a few meals to eat and moving them around as needed as we have been doing this summer.  It is helpful because I never know what is going to go on during the day so I hope that we can get dinner on the table as quickly as we need that night.

So last week I didn't even get the menu flipped over to August so I didn't have a clue what we were having and we started the week out of town.  I was a little confused over what day it was but I went back over it with a little help from my husband and came up with what we ate last week.  I got a little better with a few things filled out for the rest of the month and took a quick inventory of the basement freezer.

Monday we went to lunch at the Cheesecake Factory and my cousin and Aunt paid for it with gift cards because we paid for mini golf and maze before which was way cheaper.  For dinner we made quesdillas from the leftover taco meat, white rice for my son, buffalo chicken mac and cheese and lots of leftovers.  Tuesday we had a picnic between the ropes course that the boys did and laser tag and science museum which took all day.  We also got to go to the event there where they fit my son with a new bike helmet.

Tuesday dinner was BBQ chicken, mac and cheese, and buffalo chicken pasta.  Wednesday we left to come home and had lunch in the car with a continuation of dinner in the car with a stop at Little Caesars for pizza for $5.30 and McDonald's for big soda for $2.12.

Thursday we did lots with cleaning around the house and unpacking and the boys did mini golf and the pool so dinner was late and we had some quick pasta.  Friday had my parents coming in to town and we had chicken tacos with rice and corn on the cob.  Saturday we had a birthday party so we had pizza for lunch and we made Olive Oil Pasta with zucchini and corn on the cob for dinner.

Sunday was Grilled Spedies Chicken and pineapple with white rice and salad (with the last of the corn on the cob that my parents bought).  My parents always stop at farm stands and bring lots of produce or things to use up out of their fridge when they come to visit.  It is always the challenge to find all the uses for what they bring we we enjoyed the amazing corn on the cob lots!