Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Making Postcards

One of the swaps that I had signed up for on swap-bot is a homemade Halloween postcard exchange. Thinking was a neat idea, I joined. Before this I never knew what joy paper-crafting was. After looking around for awhile I found a lot of options that I could use to make my postcards.
When making postcards you need to make them sturdy but I didn't have cardstock around the house and wasn't sure that it was really worth buying a pack. The last pack that we bought lasted years and the special postcard paper was expensive. I settled for 4x6 index cards. I made a trip to Joanne's to get scrapbooking paper and stickers. My total cost for this project was $2.19 and it will make a little more than the three I've already made. And they're pretty nice looking too.
I made a few templates out of index cards to make my life easier. Pretty neat, right?

What You'll Need:
Scarpbooking paper
Glue stick extra strength
Index cards (4x6)

Trace the index card on the back of the scrapbooking paper you've chosen. Carefully cut it out as straight as you can. Glue paper onto lined side of index card. Decide how much of your backing paper you want to show and cut out and index card template. Trace and cut out then glue centered on top of other scrapbooking paper. Decorate attractively with stickers. Divide back into thirds and draw a black line on the far right third. Write your address here. Scribe message on other side. A fix with 28 cent postage and send.
And now for a giveaway. You can receive one of these postcards yourself! Just leave a comment below by Wednesday, October 27  and I'll randomly choose and mail it in time for Halloween!

Letters Update

This has been a really good mail week. I've received mail everyday so far. A postcard from Taiwan and a post card from Holland came. Postcards for various swap-bot swaps. I'm starting to loose count of the things that I've sent.
Letters: 17
Postcards: 15
I've received:
Letters: 6
Postcards: 9
It seems like everyday I have mail to send. It's fun. And I'm getting to know my locate postal clerks as well.
I'm going to hold a letter writing challenge next month. I'll post details later.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Frugal Struggles

As I washed the windows at work today and chatted with the mother chaperoning her little club scout selling popcorn I wandered "when does frugal become too frugal?" "How do I decide if something's worth it?"
I've been to the deep end of the frugal bin to the point where I was sewing my jeans just to keep them together because they 'fit right'. Because finding a pair of jeans for a big gal like me in a pain in the neck. I mean my thighs aren't that big. So I kept sewing and patching until I had one good pair of jeans. No one can live with one pair of jeans. Therefore, I shrugged of the 'perfect fit' and got something that fit but wasn't the fit.
Sometimes you think you don't need something that you really do, such as my jeans, and think up stupid excuses on why you shouldn't buy them. Well, sometimes you need to take that plunge and just get it.
For months now I've been toying around with buying a laptop. I needed a new computer since my old one was really slow and would sometimes take up to an hour to boot up. I was frustrated and annoyed. Last week I saw an add in the Sunday paper for a HP laptop. I went and got it. I thought up of every reason why not to get it but I thought of an excellent reason why I should. I need for college. Education comes first.
So, how do you decide when something's worth it? We've all seen it. Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts alike sell things to you for a reason, to be able to afford things like camping, or maybe going on a day trip. Either way they are benefiting from it. "Well, $3.50 (the price for a box of Girl Scout cookies) is outrageous!" First of all the troop themselves do not get the whole $3.50. The money gets broken down between manufacturing, the council so they can keep the camps up and running, among other things. The troop only gets a very tiny sliver of the pie that equal only a few cents. Here's the break down:

How the Cookie Crumbles at Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana

Below is a breakdown of the proceeds from each $3.50 package of cookies:

  • $1.55 goes to council-subsidized programs (girl and adult recruitment, adult education, programs, camp and camping activities, and program-related staff salaries and expenses)
  • $0.90 goes to troop support (troop profits, girl incentives and Cookie Dough)
  • $0.90 goes to sale-related expenses (cost of cookies, promotional materials, training cookie volunteers, etc.)
  • $0.15 goes to administrative support (office services/supplies, accounting, fund development, administrative salaries, etc.) (Source:
The price of a box is worth it. Besides, if you can afford a cup of coffee everyday you can buy a box. Better yet just donate a dollar or two and walk away knowing that you're helping a kid achieve his or her dream. So when it comes to charitable cases just as this, my wallet is always opened.
Especially when the local church makes candy!
P.S. I count Girl Scout and Boy Scout fundraisers as a local good. 100% of the proceeds stay within the community. Can someone say guilt free?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Simple Life

Life's been pretty good lately. Mostly been working, writing letters, and postcards. My day was brightened by a random postcard sent from someone one It was nice to get something unexpected!
I also received a letter from my friend living in South Carolina.
My stats so far:
Letters Sent: 9
Postcards Sent: 4
Letters Recieved: 2
Postcards Recieved: 1
I feel a challenge coming on next month! A letter/postcard writing challenge. Who's with me on this one! We'll go back in time to when long distance calls where expensive, computers hadn't even been invented yet, and cell phones where never heard of. No special equipment required.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Send a smile...

..It only costs 44 cents.
I've been on a letter writing rampage lately. As I've said before, I've gotten a few penpals, wrote to three old friends, and joined a swap site.
In the past two week I've sent three letters over seas to Latvia, Sri Lanka, and Australia, and three letters within the United States. Currently, I have three letters needing to be written and sent within the US.
Now here's the fun part.
My Latvian penpal replied! I did a little dance and opened the envelope. It took about a week to get here.
My Sri Lankan penpal e-mailed me saying that she couldn't make out my address, so that letter was received safely.
And I made my three friends smile.
No word from Australia yet.
From the swap site, I'm currently in five swaps. An Christmas card, Halloween postcard, penpal letter, e-mail message, and a journal entry.
This is going to be fun!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Another Copper Update

He's in the clear! I'm so relieved that he's healing well and back to normal. His staples got removed on Friday. Copper's appetite is returning although I'm sneaking his medicine in soft dog treats, which is an inexpensive alternative to pill pockets.
My mom had her hip replaced last Tuesday. She's home now and I'm taking care of her and the dog. Guess who gets to change the gauze then the visiting nurse isn't here? But it's okay.
I'm hoping that in the next few days that I'll get to posting some recipes. Yum!