Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year

2011 has been a good year to us. We moved to a new place, made many great memories with family and friends, and continued to focus on our marriage.

But, I have to be honest...I am really excited for 2012. I mean, really! (Other than it meaning I have to turn 30). I have a good feeling this year will be especially good to us! We are hoping for some exciting changes and I am ready to take them on!

Here are some of my resolutions for 2012:

  • Continue to lose weight and start exercising!
  • Be a better wife, sister, daughter, and friend.
  • Continue my relationship with God - I think 2012 will be a year of strengthening, understanding and focusing on my faith!
  • Focus more on my career - I'm hoping to regain some passion!
  • Become more organized and keep my home in better condition.

There are more of course but these are some of the top resolutions I'm hoping to keep all through 2012!

So Happy New Year and have a fun time celebrating tonight!!

As for Ryan and I...we will be having some snacky foods, playing games, and hoping to make it to midnight! Ha!!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Our View

This was the view of Pikes Peak from our balcony tonight!


Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!!

We hope you have had a wonderful day celebrating the birth of our Lord!
We certainly did!!

And's time to relax!!

John 3:17 God did not send his Son into the world to condemn its people.
He sent him to save them!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Starting again...

I wish I had a good excuse why I haven't blogged recently, but I do not. I just haven't!!

I will do my best to catch up this weekend!!!

Stay tuned for...

* Pictures

* How I'm doing on my 30 before 30 list

* What's new!

* Coupons

* Recipes

* And more!!!

But for's time for me to get ready to go to my nephew's 1st Birthday Party!!!
Happy Saturday!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Del Monte BOGO Coupon!

Sorry for getting this up so late - work, work meeting, and volleyball tonight kept me from getting this up until now. I did check and the coupon is still available! Follow the link below and then click on the Learn Why link and that will take you to the coupon. Remember you need to be a registered member of Vocalpoint to get in on this deal!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

BOGO Coupon Available Tuesday!

A few posts ago I wrote about some of my favorite survey and free sample sites. One of those was Vocalpoint and on Tuesday they will have buy one get one FREE coupons for Del Monte Fruit Naturals cups.

You must be a registered member of Vocalpoint to get in on this deal. If you are not already a member of Vocalpoint you should go on over and register there now.

Come back here Tuesday and I will post the link so you can get your BOGO coupon!!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Nemo, Lightning McQueen, and Elmo

Last weekend we watched the first Nebraska game of the season at my sister and brother-in-law's house. There was yummy food, lots of cheering, and family time.

But my nephew Nathan stole the show!!

"Nathan, I want to take your picture!"

"Aunt Mikki, I see me?"

"Come here Nathan, I want to take your picture - you look too cute!!"

"Nathan?? Nathan??"

Monday, September 5, 2011

Dirty Thirty

In five short months I will be turning (gulp) 30. To be honest I am not looking forward to this birthday at all. I have come across a few blogs where people who are going to turn 30 have compiled a list of the things they want to accomplish before their birthday. I decided to follow suit in hopes that I would achieve some major goals while looking forward (instead of dreading) the big 3-0! Below is my list - I plan to update you as I accomplish these goals.

This list currently is posted to my refrigerator as a big fat reminder of the 30 things I need to accomplish in 5 short months - I'm hoping by having it on my blog I will be more motivated to accomplish the list!

Mikki’s 30 Before the Big 30!!

1. Read four books

2. Cook one new recipe a week

3. Go on a trip

4. Take two classes

5. Learn to use my sewing machine & make something fun

6. Run a 5K

7. Organize my teaching supplies

8. Volunteer

9. Host a dinner

10. Blog more

11. Take more pictures

12. Learn how to play my guitar

13. Paint a picture

14. Bake a cake from scratch with frosting

15. Do a Bible study

16. Cook breakfast once a month

17. Go sledding

18. Lose weight

19. Fly a kite

20. Take a road trip using a coin (heads or tails)

21. Learn more sign language

22. Visit Red Rocks

23. Buy a new pair of glasses

24. Do something nice for Ryan once a month

25. Go on a bike ride

26. Get a couples massage

27. Set a weekly cleaning schedule

28. Have girl time once a month

29. Get apartment decorated and organized

30. Say goodbye to my 20’s feeling excited and accomplished!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Happy Sunday!!

I woke up this morning to this...

And if you're grossed out about Oreo and I sharing a water cup - we do not. I found out awhile ago she was doing this during the night and do not drink out of my cup anytime during the night.

Hope your Sunday is quenched with happiness!! :o)

Friday, September 2, 2011

Show us Your Life - Favorite Blogs

I have a know how everyone jokes about "that person" who looks in your medicine cabinet in your bathroom while visiting your house? Well...I'm "that person". I like to know what I'm missing out on - some may say nosy, I say curious. :o)

Growing up I always searched and found my birthday and Christmas presents long before the celebrating began. I still remember when I was about ten years old and I was at my cousins house. I led her around her house searching for her and her sisters Christmas presents - I brought her out to the family camper and there they were. I will never forget the look on her face - she was so upset the surprise was ruined. She wasn't the curious type, she didn't need to know. I did.

Now here we are twenty years later and I have found the way to feed my endless curiosity about people and their lives. BLOGGING! I love it - I could spend hours looking at other people's blogs. Today I am linking up to Kelly's Korner to some of my favorite blogs - these are ones I access everyday and hope you visit them too!!

1. My sister has two blogs that are so fun to read!
The first is her family blog - I am incredibly partial to this blog as it focuses mainly on my two favorite little boys - my nephews! Nothing beats the stories and the pictures of my sister's beautiful and blessed family.

The second is her newer blog Socks In the Dishwasher. Here you can read about her amazing family as well as other stories and fun things she has to share! She is a great writer and keeps me motivated on my blog.

2. Real Mom Kitchen - I have found so many delicious recipes on this blog. She updates every weekday, has theme weeks, and giveaways!! It's easy to use and search for recipes - I try at least one recipe a week from her site.

3. Bargain Blessings - Jennie runs this site. I went to a couponing class she had last November and is the reason I have found such great success in couponing. She is an amazing woman who teaches the couponing ways as a Christian. One of the best things she does is teaches way to give to others and coupon ethically.

So there they are - some of my favorite websites! I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Barbecued Pork - Easy Crockpot Recipe

One of my favorite blogs Kelly's Korner is featuring Crockpot recipes. Here is a recipe that is incredibly yummy and super easy to make (and the creator of the Crockpot is saying "duh Mikki that's why I created it!"). I found this recipe years ago when I was doing Weight Watchers and still use it all the time. I typically add some additional spices like garlic salt and red pepper flakes.

Barbecued Pork

2 lbs. boneless pork top loin
1 cup chopped onion
3/4 cup diet soda
3/4 cup barbecue sauce (I typically use more - we love us some BBQ here!)

Combine all ingredients in a Crockpot. Cook, covered on high for 5-6 hours or until meat is very tender. Drain and slice or shred pork.

Serves 8

Serve as is or on buns/bread/whatever you like!! Enjoy!!!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Survey Says...

Now it's time for me to share why I reviewed the Downy Unstopables...

Along with couponing and saving money another great way to get coupons, try products for free, AND make money is to take online surveys. I was nervous about it at first but if you find the right survey websites and are willing to spend some time you can have success with it too.

I use three different sites and so far have tried the Unstopables, received a free bottle of shampoo (the only downfall - I did not know the brand) to review, made $20 and much more!!

The three sites I use are:

They are not always accepting new users so you may have to try a few times over a month or two. They use a point system for each of the surveys you complete - so far I have made $20 and received my check promptly! You can also use your points to get different items!

I am still getting familiar with this website, but so far find it easy to navigate. This is another one where you are rewarded points and then cash them in for money.

This website is not a survey site but is good and is especially for Moms. You can get free samples (currently they are giving away Unstopables samples) and coupons. It was through this site that I was able to get a free full-sized Unstopables bottles. I agreed that if I was given the product I would review it on their site and write a review on my blog.

Like I said it takes some time but if you can get free things, save money, and make money I absolutely think it is worth my time!

Friday, August 26, 2011

A Review - Downy Unstopables!

A Great New Find!!

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I recently had the opportunity to try a new product from Downy. Downy Unstopables is a laundry product that makes your clothes smell fresh and clean!! You simply pour some of the dissolving beads into your washing machine with the detergent and clothes, dry as normal and WOW!! You get amazing smelling, fresh clothes that last until the next wash.

I used to be a big fabric softener fan (mostly for the "fresh laundry" smell) - that is no more! Our clothes are so soft (I no longer use dryer sheets) and smell so good I will not go back!!

I also have very sensitive skin - I tend to have a skin allergy to many laundry products, especially ones with that yummy new laundry smell. I had no sensitivity issues to the Unstopables. There are two scents you can choose from - Fresh and Lush. I have used the Fresh and I LOVE IT!

Have you tried Downy Unstopables?? If you have, let me know what you think!!

Coming soon - find out how I was able to snag a full-sized sample of this product and other ways to test products and make money!!!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Sign Says: Bumpy Road Ahead

On Thursday of last week I was sitting with one of my kiddos and he was playing with my upper arm (one might say "jiggling" my upper arm).

He looked up at me with childhood wonder and said "Ms. Mikki - why is your arm so bumpy?"

I just looked at him...he just kept on jiggling...

And then...

"Ms. Mikki - you need more muscles".

There it sign...the inevitable...

The weight loss journey begins (again) this week - I'm more about a lifestyle change this time. Healthier choices and (MUCH) more exercise!

Time to get rid of the bumpy!! Who's with me?!?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


Here are a couple of funny things a little boy ("C") said to me recently...

* During lunch we excuse each of the children to go to the bathroom to alleviate the inevitable trip back in during after lunch recess. After having their turn to "potty" they finish their lunch. When I excused C to go potty he told me couldn't go because he was "stuck to the chair".

* When we come back in from being outside a teacher reads from a chapter book while the children take some time to lay down and rest. While I was getting the children settled C tells me that I can't read the story today. When I asked why he told me he is allergic to stories!!

* This is the same boy that told a substitute teacher last Friday his name is Julian (it is not!) and told a parent that my coworker is his Mom (she is not!).

Kids are the BEST!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Feeling Better

I'm not sure if there's anything family can't fix...

I got to spend the evening with my family...

and while I am not back to 100% - I sure felt like I was for the few hours I spent with my husband and family tonight.

Today is my sister's 32nd birthday (Happy Birthday Kyle!!!) and we had the opportunity of spending the evening with my Mom, Dad, Nephews, My Mom's Parents, and my Sister and Brother-in-Law.

While my Sister and Brother-in-Law went to dinner we helped my Mom watch the boys - so fun!!

Then we got to celebrate my sister with presents, cake, ice cream, and time together!!

My Mom and Grandma listened to me vent...

I got hugs and cuddles galore from my nephews...

I forgot about the bad things...

Was reminded of what is truly important in life...

And I feel better!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Pity Party - Table for One!

I'm down this week...

I'd rather not get into the details...

Not yet at least...

Maybe someday...

So pardon my lack of blogging the last couple of days.

I'm focusing on me and focusing on the positive.

It's times like these I keep reminding myself that God has a plan...

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
- John 8:12

Ryan also reminded me that he would be at the table with me - he makes me smile...

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Few Words

To be honest I'm extremely tired and don't have much to talk about today.

Ryan cleaned when we both got home (I'm telling you - he's a catch!), I'm going to make an easy dinner, and then I think I'll take a bath and go to bed.

Hopefully I'll have more words tomorrow, until then...have a great rest of your Tuesday!!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Figurine or Firearm??

My husband...
He works hard, plays hard, and is an amazing man!!

So amazing that he took a day off to spend time with me on my day off - what a guy!!

Since we moved about two months ago we have been "cleaning out our closet" or you know...trying to get rid of stuff we don't use anymore.
Stuff like the flute I played in high school, decorations, clothes, etc. You get the idea!

Well today on our day off together we decided to take some time and try to look into possibly selling said stuff. We have tried Craigslist and so far have had no luck so we decided to directly call some stores to see if we'd get a bite.

The first item we called on was the flute and we have a lead!!

The second item was a Hummel figurine. Do you know what that is? Well it's one of these...

We got this after a family friend passed away years ago and have decided we really have no use for it and it does not go with our decor.

So my wonderful husband got on the phone and called the first store. Here is how the conversation went.
Ryan: "Hello, I found your website and it says you buy antiques and collectibles. Oh... ok... Really? So it's mostly firearms then?"
I don't think that's the person who will be buying our Hummel figurine :)

And after that...we're headed to the pool!!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Summer So Far...

On top of trying a ton of new recipes and couponing (I will have a post on this VERY soon!), here is what we've been up to so far this Summer....

Spending time at the pool...

Getting ready for a new school year - organizing papers!

"Gardening" - we are growing cilantro, chives, dill, oregano, and peppers!!

Watching and enjoying the thunderstorms we've been having!! I love our daily storms!!

And the best of all...spending time with family and each other!!
Hope your summer has been a blast so far!!!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

Another Recipe!!

I made this (well Ryan grilled) chicken for dinner tonight! It was very yummy! I found this recipe in the June 2011 Food Network magazine. When planning meals I saw that I had all the ingredients on hand so I wouldn't have to spend any money to make this meal and I love trying new recipes! This was a definite winner!!

As you can see from the pictures below I paired the chicken with some rice, fruit, and salad.


Carolina Style Barbecue Chicken


1/2 cup yellow mustard
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar (I had dark on hand)
1 1/2 tablespoons mustard powder (I only used 1 tablespoon)
2 teaspoons hot sauce (I used Cholula)
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (I used salted)
8 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (2 to 2 1/4 pounds) (I used 4 chicken breasts)
Vegetable oil, for brushing


1. Preheat grill to medium. Whisk the yellow mustard, vinegar, brown sugar, mustard powder, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste in a bowl. Whisk in the butter.
2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, then toss with about 1/3 of the mustard sauce in a large bowl until coated. Let sit at room temperature for 10 minutes.
3. Brush the grill grates with vegetable oil. Put about 1/4 cup of the remaining mustard sauce in a small bowl for basting and reserve the rest for topping. Grill the chicken, covered, basting occasionally with the sauce, until well marked and cooked through.
4. Serve the chicken with the reserved mustard sauce.


I'm Back!!

I really hope this time I can keep up with blogging! Please stick with me!!

Now...before I continue blogging about couponing, my adorable nephews, and more I have decided to first share a recipe! I found it on the Taste of Home website.

I made this recipe for a 4th of July BBQ we had at my sisters this last weekend. I volunteered to bring the side dishes and one that I brought was this delicious pasta salad. I highly recommend you try this - it will now be my go to for BBQ's and potlucks. Enjoy!!

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  • 1 package (16 ounces) bow tie or small tube pasta
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • 1 cup sliced carrots
  • 1 cup diced cucumber
  • 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions

  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 teaspoons poppy seeds


  • Cook pasta according to package directions; rinse with cold water and drain. Place in a large bowl; add cheese, broccoli, carrots, cucumber, tomatoes and onions. In a blender, combine vinegar, sugar, garlic, onion, mustard and salt; gradually add oil, blending until smooth. Add poppy seeds. Pour over pasta mixture and toss. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Yield: 16-18 servings.

Monday, May 2, 2011

What's Next??


I know that I have one faithful reader (thank you to my sister!!). However, I would like to know from my readers (is there anyone out there??) what you would like me to write about next? Please vote and the winning vote is what will be posted soon (as in a couple days, not months!! It's all about me getting motivated to write folks!!). Here are your choices:

1. My adorable nephews
2. My adventures as a preschool teacher
3. Recipes
4. Couponing - my favorite new and successful past time!!
5. Readers Choice (this is where you pick a topic and I will write about it - risky!!)
6. Ryan Writes - I've talked about it in the past...would you like to hear what my amazing husband has to say???

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Too Long

My apologies! It has been TOO long since I have posted and I promise I will again soon. I just wanted to do a quick update and say all is great!! And for my sister - you can now thank me for not having your beautiful face highlighted at the top of my blog!

Here are some things you can look forward to:

* Pictures!!

* We welcomed a new nephew into the world on Thanksgiving - yay pictures and bragging from an adoring aunt!!

* What we have been up to and what we're looking forward to

* My 30 before 30 (the 30 things I would like to accomplish before I turn the big 3-0!)

* And more!!