Saturday, June 30, 2007

Camp, Last Day!

We picked up an exhausted, stinky (but happy) C. from camp last night. She had a great time (as always) and talks about when she can be a counselor there (only two more years until she can take counselor-in-training sessions!).

The final pics:

The "parent program" at the end, where each group does a song or skit or dance:

C, introducing her cabin (and team for Survivor):

Intricate Stag Bag

Here's what I've been working on today:

And if you don't recognize it, it's because you haven't subscribed to the free eZine, knittingdaily!

(OK, if you don't recognize it, maybe it's because knittingdaily shows it in the much-nicer shades of brown and cream, but I'm on a yarn diet, so I had to make due with what I had!)

(Hopefully) the hardest part is done.

It feels nice to be knitting something of substance again!

Groceries 6/30/07

I'm so angry with Pick N Save since they eliminated double coupons and instead started this MPG program. The MPG program gives you 10 cents off per gallon of gas for every $50 of groceries you buy, up to 12 gallons, and only at participating Mobil gas stations. Of course, the day this promotion started, all Mobil gas stations increased their per-gallon prices by 5 cents above every other station in the area. UGH!

I still did pretty well today.

Total: $95.93
Savings: $61.06
Number of Items: 57
Pick N Save

best deals:
Super Pretzels, reg. $2.59, on sale for B1G1F, minus $1 coupon
Scott toilet paper, 12 pk. dbl. rolls, reg. $7.05, sale for $5.50 minus $1 coupon
Kraft shredded cheese, reg. $2.89, sale for $2 minus $0.75 coupon
Coke products in 12 pks., reg. $3.99-$4.19, on sale for $2.75 minus one additional one free if you buy 5

I don't know if I've ever mentioned that our credit card (Chase Rewards) gives us 5% cash back on all purchases at grocery stores, gas stations, and drug stores. That helps, too.

Friday, June 29, 2007

More free or low-cost remodeling

Since we've spent all of our home equity money (and then some), any additional work on the house has to be done with the materials we have on hand. I did a lot of that this week.

First, with C. gone for the week, and a new second bathroom, I decided to tackle the first floor tub/shower. Trust me when I say that it is a good thing I did NOT take a "before" picture!

I pulled out the yucky caulk from all around the tub. G. took down the shower door. I dabbed straight bleach on all the grout (three times!) and used the steam cleaner as well. I let it dry thoroughly for several days. I used Kaboom, and soft scrub, and finally straight bleach on the tub itself. I re-caulked the tile-to-tub seam (and filled the tub with water for weight and let it sit overnight). I sealed the grout. I cleaned the shower doors (and hardware) and scraped soap scum off of them. I Rain-X'ed the inside of the shower doors. I took down the showerhead and soaked it in vinegar. G. put the doors back up. I re-caulked around them. And now it looks like this:
And I've been working on the basement bathroom for a LONG time. There used to be shelf-liner on the drywall behind the mirror. Not only that, the drywall was hung backwards (paper out) so it all ripped when I peeled the shelf-liner off. So as lousy as I am at mudding drywall, I had to mud the ENTIRE area behind the sink! While I was at it, I also mudded the seams that had been taped but never mudded (can you believe it?). And then I primed the entire room with textured paint (lousy drywaller's best friend!) and painted it with OOPS! paint we'd found at Home Depot (Behr brand) for $5 a gallon. It's a really cool green color (not sure it comes through well in pictures). Then G. found a new faucet (old one was leaking) for $9 and put that in. I stained a piece of trim to match, and G. attached that to the front of the vanity to give it a more "finished" look. I also sanded some paint off, and then used the Restor-A-Finish to touch up the vanity. We still have to hang a big mirror (we have some--just not sure how to hang them!) over the vanity and need to get some baseboard trim (that'll be real money), but the basement bathroom's looking pretty good, I think. Check it out:

We had some paint left over, so we filled in the holes on the closet doors across from the bathroom and painted them to match the bathroom:

G's got a piece of trim to put on top of those, too.

I swear, it's such an addiction to fix up the house! In some ways, it's almost more fun to have no money and try to do it anyway...

Camp, Day Five pics

Again, more! I think it helps to attend in the second week when there aren't a lot of kids, and the novelty of taking pictures is still high!

Thursday, June 28, 2007

T's Birthday Party

Though T's birthday is the beginning of May, we often wait until summer to do his party. This year it was REALLY late!

Tuesday night G. took T. and four of his friends to the Mineshaft (same place he went last year) for pizza and video games. Then they came home for cake:

(he missed two candles, so two girlfriends, if you're keeping track!)

And then presents:
Three of the boys slept over, and not a lot of sleeping was done! I think we've hit the age where sleepovers don't work out so well.

But T., at least, had a lot of fun!

Restor-A-Finish really DOES work!

This post is for Suzee...

She had told me that Restor-A-Finish was a miracle product, but it didn't perform miracles for me! I decided to give it a shot on our beat-up end table:

Hey! Look at that:
I have a bunch of things that I want to try it on, but I don't know whether to do it or not ;) I will say one thing--when it works, it really works! :)

Camp, Day Four pics

Lots more...

You can just see C behind the girl on the right:

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Camp, Day Three pics and a letter!

LOTS of camp pics today! Looks like a really fun day...

WHOA! Look at that hair:
It's Survivor camp, remember!

We also got a letter from C. today. Here it is, as she wrote it:

Dear Mom, Dad, M. and T,
Today we had our first immunitie chalange. My cabin/team won it! It came as a suprise to all of us. We had the worst shot but somehow they decieded we won. We got these odd cloth tubes called buffs that our are team colors. My team is Rainbow. Our team name is the Pink Pirate Killer bunnies. There are so many blackberrys that they are all over.

I miss you all lots,
p.s. M's leafes are included
(she promised to send leaves from camp for M's giraffe)