Wednesday, May 25, 2016

What exactly is "thrift": on blogging as Thrift for Today

This old blog has been through many iterations since its birth back in 2012 (!)  I'm not even sure what made me decide to start a blog other than I really enjoyed reading other blogs and thought I would be able to to the same.  I knew that if I started it though, I wanted to keep up with it.

Once we got married, we really started to learn more and more about personal finance and being resourceful and I decided on the blog's current name, Thrift for Today.  Over time, the blog has certainly had its share of good times and not so awesome times - when I was posting fun things regularly and when I forgot it even existed.  And frankly, our lives have changed a lot since we started the blog and I often find myself wondering what to do next.

Does Thrift for Today really fit anymore?  Should I start over and rebrand as something new?  I'm not sure there is a definite right answer here, after taking a look at the definition of thrift and asking myself just what exactly I enjoy about this blog, I realize that yes!  It does still fit.  It is still appropriate, and while I might not always be posting specifically about saving/managing money these days, thrift really is an undercurrent of so much that we do as a family.  And let's be real - I do not really have time to change this whole thing up right now.


So what then is "thrift"?  According to Google (above), it's the quality of using money and other resources carefully and not wastefully.  It's this last part that really affirmed my decision.  

Monday, May 23, 2016

Weekending. 5.22.16

Last week when I looked at the weather forecast, it was calling for cooler temps and cloudy/rainy weather this whole weekend but man!  This weekend really turned out to be full of fun and beautiful weather with some clouds and rain mixed in.  But WAY more pretty than not.

Last week felt really long to me.  I don't think there was anything totally crazy or different about it, but it just felt non-stop and by Friday I was tired.  I planned on cooking a pizza for us for dinner because it is super easy to cook, eat, and clean up which was really what I needed on Friday.  But, hubs came home with coupons for Moe's so we packed up a dinner for the Little and went out to eat.  It was so nice and relaxing and fun.  We haven't eaten out as a family in a while and it is so much easier now because Little can sit in a high chair and I can pack solids for him to eat and things to keep him occupied.  It was such an unexpected surprise idea from hubs and I really appreciated it.

Saturday, we went to a local park first thing in the morning just to get outside before the rain that they were calling for.  Little can really only enjoy the baby swings now so we weren't there very long but it was fun to be on the playground with him and watching him explore new things.  Because the weather cleared up though and ended up being beautiful, we met friends for lunch and headed to a local farm to pick fresh strawberries. 

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Thrift Tip: Saving Money on Groceries with Ibotta

Now that I'm staying home full time (aka not earning a regular income), I have taken on a much larger role in our family in terms of looking for and implementing ways to save money around our house.  This goes for household supplies, family activities, etc.  A big part of that though is groceries.  We spend money on groceries every single week.  We plan all of our meals and try to keep an eye out for when things are on good deals so that we can stock up.

That said, I feel like I'm a little late to the grocery saving apps, but I'm sharing today in case some of you haven't tried it yet.  I've tried several, and I've really stuck with Ibotta.  It is super easy and user friendly.  It's a rebate app, which means that you create an account, link up your grocery store loyalty cards in some cases, shop like you normally would and then scan a photo (with your phone) to get $$ back. 

One of my favorite things about this app is that each week there are several "any brand" rebates that you can use for pantry staples like a dozen eggs, bananas (or other fruits), bread, milk, etc.  The any brand rebates are only about $0.25 each, but they can really add up.  I kind of think of it as "if I saw a quarter on the ground, would I pick it up?"  And for me, that answer is always yes.  

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

What I Wore: All Gap all the time and a little of life lately

Happy Wednesday, friends!  We were away this past weekend and got home later than we planned so our week has been non-stop.  I had every intention of taking lots of photos of our fun and family filled weekend (which was a treat since we just had a fun, family filled weekend with Mother's Day just a couple of weekends ago, too).    I even took an extra battery and just knew I would have time to get it up on the blog at least by Monday night.  But I didn't even take the camera out of my bag because we were just having too much fun.  So there's that. 

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Stripes on Stripes - transitional weather

Y'all.  I cannot even believe how quickly this year is flying by.  It's true what they say that time flies by way more quickly when you have kids and frankly, I knew it but now I really know it.  Our little will be 8 months old this week - which sounds a lot closer to one year that it does being a little baby.  That said, I do pick him right up to me almost everyday and tell him that I'm going to hold him like a little baby.  Then I just kiss that sweet neck and tickle those little sides and he laughs and laughs.  I eat it up.  Every single time.

And since that's what most of my days consist of these days, I'm rocking the mom pony-tail on the regular.  Don't worry, I'm still washing my hair and even drying it, but I haven't pulled out a straightener in a minute because my hair is getting so long now that it's becoming quite unnecessary especially when I know it's being pulled back soon anyway.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Mother's Day Re-cap

Happy Monday, friends!  I hope everyone had a fun and relaxing weekend.  Ours was filled with fun and family and we had a really great time.   

Friday night was really low-key.  I cooked a pizza and we went for a family walk after dad got home.  Nothing too exciting, which is just they way I think a Friday night should be.  

On Saturday, I spent some time with one of my sisters who recently moved to help her pack things and move some of the last things from the old apartment to the new.  It's way easier to help someone else move than to move yourself - that is for sure!  Hub's family came up to visit for the afternoon/evening and we just hung out at home with them.  The weather was PERFECT so we were able to play outside (Little and I watched Daddy and his brothers play basketball), go for a walk, and even have dinner outside.  

Sunday, we went to church early in the morning and then came home so the Little could nap (he didn't) then drove to visit my parents.  This was super fun since all of my siblings were also able to visit.  We haven't all been together since Christmas so this was a real treat - and my mom was really thankful to have all of us there. 

Friday, May 6, 2016

Five on Friday

Friday!  Friday!  Friday!  Oh, I just love a good Friday.  It means a weekend is coming up and we get to do all the fun things as a family for the next two days.

I'm also excited, because I've been able to put together a top 5 list this week for you all!  These little lists are good for me to go back and recognize some of the little fun things going on around here each week. 

ONE.  Shopping trips with my sister.  Earlier, I mentioned how my sister has an awesome style and I'm feeling a little bit in a rut with my wardrobe.  Since I don't love to complain without acting, I got to go shopping with my sis recently and started to revamp my spring/summer wardrobe.  I was just thrilled.  I need to shop slowly because I don't want any buyer's remorse and I need to stay in my budget so it was really fun to have my sister there to help me decide which pieces to get this month and which to leave behind.  

I ended up with 6 pieces - 4 tops and 2 crop pants for just $64.  This is pushing it pretty close to my monthly budget, but I think it was totally worth it.  I ended up with the pink striped shirt and coral tee from LOFT, a lime green linen tunic, an awesome chambray top (remember when I posted about wanting to add this to my wardrobe?  I can check this and the puffy vest off at this point!) from Gap, orange crop pants from Gap and white denim crop pants by Merona for Target.  We shop second hand, so we were able to find sweet deals without breaking the bank.  I seriously think someone totally unloaded their LOFT collection though, so I am hoping to snag a few more pieces next month when my budget resets.  Loft and Gap are two of my favorite brands for comfort, style, and fit, so it was a real treat to find these pieces there!  I'm excited to start wearing these soon!

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Strawberry, orange, & almond salad

I don't know about you, but the warmer the weather gets, the more I am craving fruits and veggies, which is helpful since one of my new goals is to eat healthier these days.  Today I'm sharing a super simple and extra delicious salad that I have been eating way more than I expected.  I'm not tired of it yet, and I think it's a great salad for the summer.  It's also a great salad for any social event since it is so easy and I'm sure it would be a crowd-pleaser.  

Before you say anything, I'm eating it out of a mixing bowl because I've been eating it for lunch and not as a little side salad and I need some room for my greens!  :)