Baby Chase Gets A Nursery!

After two full weekends of working and a little chaos in-between, Baby Chase’s nursery is finally coming together! We won’t find out till next week whether Baby Chase (BC) is a boy or a girl, but we wanted to get a head start on converting our guest bedroom (a.k.a. junk room) into a perfect little nursery.

{Step 1 – Get rid of everything!} My two weeks of vacation during the holidays was spent on this step alone! It was pretty time-consuming to sort, move and get rid of everything that was already in BC’s room. After two trips to Catholic Charities, two full trash/recycling bins and a yard full ready for bulk trash pick-up, the room was empty and ready for a make-over!

{Step 2 – No more carpet!} I was always curious why the previous owners decided to cover up the gorgeous hard wood floor with carpet. I’ve been wanting to pull it up since we moved in and with BC’s room finally empty I jumped at the opportunity. Thanks to mom, dad and Vincent, all the carpet has been removed and the original wood floors cleaned and shined. I’m so happy with the end result!

{Step 3 – Furniture Time!} Thanks to my amazing parents we received some of our baby furniture as Christmas gifts this year. I was excited to get BC’s crib moved in to see how much space we had to work with. We plan to add a wardrobe, dresser/changing table, toy box and rocking chair. We were hoping we would be able to get the already assembled crib moved from mom & dad’s to the nursery without a hitch, but with narrow doorways Vince and dad spent the evening disassembling and re-assembling!

XOXO,

Bri

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Coupon Update: 1/14/12

Woohoo! Just returned home from a visit to the grocery store and I’m super pumped that we saved 20% on our groceries this week and came in $15 under budget! Our total savings for 2012 are $58.04!

It’s not out of the ordinary for us to spend $150+ a week on groceries for just the two of us when we don’t pay attention to what we’re buying. However, with a little menu planning and preparation, it’s been somewhat easy for us to come in on or under our budget each week. Here’s how I prepared for this week…

1. Put together a meal plan based on items we already had on hand.

2. Made a shopping list of produce, fresh foods and any items needed for this week’s recipes that we don’t already have. We make sure our list is within our budget before discounts & coupons are factored in. This makes sure that we are under budget and there are no surprises at checkout.

3. Check sales flyers for our local grocery stores. I usually like to shop at Target, but most of the items we needed this week were on sale at Kroger, so Kroger it was!

4. Clip coupons for any items on our list. My goal is for every item on my list to either be on sale, purchased with coupons, or both. Never pay retail…unless it’s an emergency!

5. Head to the store with grocery list, coupons, and calculator at hand. I keep a running total of all the items I put in  my cart to make sure that our pre-coupon/discount price never goes above our budget. That way I can make adjustments if needed before I checkout.

That’s it! Pretty simple and surprisingly fun! Can’t wait to see how much we save before Baby Chase gets here!

XOXO,

Bri

Hello 2012!

I’m a little late, but Happy New Year!!! With Baby Chase’s arrival coming soon, 2012 is the year of the Baby Budget for us! Fortunately, our AdvoCare business is taking off like wildfire and has proven to be a huge supplement to our current income. To keep the momentum going, my resolution this year was to stick to meal planning and couponing. It’s proven to be a huge help in the past and I have a feeling we’re going to need it once June rolls around!

So, without further ado here’s our meal plan for next week. We’ll be shopping on Sunday with coupons in hand to add to the $40 we saved last week.

Monday: King Ranch Chicken Casserole & Salad (Thanks to Ashleigh, a college friend of mine, for posting the recipe on her blog!)

Tuesday: Weight Watchers Baked Potato Soup & Salad

Wednesday: Chili & Salad

Thursday: Jambalaya for the Crock Pot & Salad

Friday: Leftovers or Date Night

I always have whole wheat spaghetti on hand for backup just in case we need to squeeze in an extra meal or I don’t have the time to try one of the recipes above.

Are you up for the couponing challenge? Let me know how your family is saving money this year. I’ll do my best to post all of our thrifty finds and shopping tips along the way.

Also, if you’re looking for a great way to get healthy and fill your bank account check out our AdvoCare website! We’ve already helped so many of our friends look and feel great and we’d love for you to join us!

XOXO,

Bri

Bri’s Tip of the Day: 9/4/11

Good morning, everyone! It’s officially my favorite time of the year…football season!!! Our SMU Mustangs kick off their season tonight against the Texas A&M Aggies! With tailgating and parties being the focus of many commercials lately, I’ve been forced to think of ways to join in the festivities while staying healthy. Here are my plans for tonight as we host some of our close family & friends to cheer on the Mustangs:

  1. Who doesn’t love veggies? I’m making a super yummy, organic veggie tray filled with fresh carrots, celery and broccoli. I’ll try to fill up with greens first!
  2. Bottled water is a must! Leave the heavy beers to the guys and enjoy an ice cold bottle of water with a slice of lemon. While everyone else is weighted down with beer, I’ll be the most spirited!
  3. Fresh, homemade guacamole and blue corn tortilla chips are sure to be a crowd favorite. I’ll try to fill up on the veggies first so I don’t dive head first into the chip bowl!

Pictures and a Mustang victory are sure to come later tonight! Here’s to a great season ahead!

XOXO,

Bri

 

Road Trippin’

This past weekend Vincent and I took a weekend get-away to Shreveport, LA with our friends Brad and Leah. It felt so good to get out of Dallas for the weekend and we had so much fun! The drive was short and the trip was the perfect mix of relaxation and good times at the casino. We stayed at the Eldorado and enjoyed their yummy buffet and cute little diner. The rooms were really nice and the casino was a little smoky, but not too crowded. We’re looking forward to going back later this month!

{Template: DDE’s Digitally Smitten Template, Background Paper & Elements: Brittish Designs Jackpot Add-On, Elements: Krissy Scraps Casino Night}

XOXO,

Bri

 

A Clean Kitchen is a Happy Kitchen

Woohoo! Operation de-clutter is in full swing at the Chase household and there’s no better place to start than our kitchen! After a good deep cleaning and a little reorganizing I think we’ve finally found the best solution for maximizing the little counter space and storage we have. Here’s the results of today’s hard work!

View from the hallway

Looking in from the dining room

Organized Island

I also had a fun, new addition to our kitchen today! Mom and dad just returned from a wedding in Ohio and on their way back they drove through Tennessee and visited tons of super cool places. At Loretta Lynn’s plantation they picked up a few goodies for Vince and I. Mom picked out a vintage looking tin lunchbox with Miss Betty Boop on it! I absolutely love it…especially the caption “Girls Just Wanna Have Funds”!

The New Addition!

 Hope you enjoyed our happy, little kitchen! All this cleaning has me tuckered out…good night!

XOXO,

Bri

Operation Declutter!

August is one of my favorite months…it’s the anniversary of meeting my amazing hubby and my birthday month! I’m setting a goal for this month that will hopefully be a forever change for our family. We love our precious little 1950’s cottage, but after a little over a year we’re already in need of more space. It’s kind of hard to believe since it’s only Vince, Me and our puppy, Tasha! I’ve decided that in order to keep my sanity and help us get rid of all the unnecessary items in our house I would set a monthly goal for August and take baby steps to de-cluttering our home. I’ve started with a weekly cleaning schedule that is manageable for me to do every night after work while cooking dinner. I tried to keep it light enough each night to be able to finish by the time the hubby gets home so we can eat dinner and enjoy our evenings together. So, without further ado, here’s my weekly cleaning challenge for August, along with some routines I found on unclutterer. that I hope to incorporate…

Monday

  • Unload/Reload the dishwasher
  • Detail clean the Kitchen
  • Laundry (wash, dry & fold)

Tuesday

  • Unload/Reload dishwasher
  • Detail clean both Bathrooms
  • Vacuum the entire house

Wednesday

  • Unload/Reload dishwasher
  • Dust entire house & ceiling fans

Thursday

  • Unload/Reload dishwasher
  • Vacuum & Swiffer floors
  • Laundry (wash, dry & fold)

Friday

  • Unload/Reload dishwasher
  • Banking (pay bills, cash checks & organize envelope system for the next week)
  • De-clutter & Organize (File all mail & papers from the week)

Saturday

  • Unload/Reload dishwasher
  • Clean baseboards & vacuum
  • Clean out car & wipe down/vacuum interior
  • DIY House Projects

Sunday

  • Unload/Reload dishwasher
  • Relax & enjoy a clean house!

Car – Check the car each time you get out for anything that doesn’t belong there. Once a week clean out under seats and detail clean interior. 

Craft Room & Office Space – Take time once a week to file papers and organize supplies.

Closets – Go through closets once a month & purge unused items. Take all items to Catholic Charities.

 XOXO,

Bri

 

 

 

The Nest Fall 2011 Magazine

THE NEST Magazine just went digital! I love the ideas I read about in THE NEST magazine and according to the recent e-mail they sent, every Nestie can now get their magazine for free!

The new issue features:

  • Make your house a home. One real couple shows off their awesome digs and we show you how to pull it all together.
  • Relationship Rut? Here’s a fun way to charm the pants off your spouse — literally.
  • Tweet-worthy Trips. We’re talking volcano surfing and swimming through a museum.

Enjoy!

XOXO,

Bri

The Beauty Detox Solution

A week ago today I purchased this little book that has forever changed the way I think about food. I finished the entire book in the first two days and was shocked to find out what certain foods can do to your body…especially many of the ones society considers “healthy”! I enjoyed the first week of transitioning into Kim’s program and I’ve even got Vincent trying it out too! We drink a Glowing Green Smoothie every morning and have modified our weekly grocery lists and recipes. The program is easy, fun, and most importantly it’s a realistic lifestyle that leaves you feeling great! I’ve already seen great results and I love knowing that I am fueling my body everyday and preventing early aging and numerous diseases. I highly recommend THE BEAUTY DETOX SOLUTION to everyone! Even if your goal isn’t to lose weight, you can’t afford not to be healthy!

Check out Kim’s blog for awesome nutrition information and fun stories of her exciting life as a celebrity nutritionist! http://www.kimberlysnyder.net/blog/

XOXO,

Bri

Weekend Roundup: 7/31/11

It’s Sunday night, and even though it makes me sad to think that the weekend is almost over, I can’t help but be thankful for the amazing weekend that it was! Some of my favorite weekends are those spent with no obligations. Vince & I have crazy busy schedules and we’re always excited to relax and spend time at home…we’re major homebodies! So without further ado, here’s our weekend at a glance…

Friday after work I was eager to get a little retail therapy in. A true bargain shopper at heart, I headed to one of my favorite places, Marshall’s. For a budget of $50, I was so excited to get a white New York Clothing Co skirt, a super cute pink striped top from Forever, healthy all-natural treats for Tasha, a super cute lemon container for the fridge and two collapsible food storage containers. I think I was most excited about the kitchen items! Part of our new eating plan involves drinking yummy lemon water and I never seem to use a whole lemon at a time, so our new container will definitely help to keep them fresh! Also the collapsible food storage containers are a must for a kitchen with very little cabinet space and no drawers!

Saturday morning was spent finishing an apron I had started earlier this week. I made it out of scrap material in my scrap bin and I am in love with the end result! I brought it with me to my first Sew Modern Chicks meeting at Paradise Bakery. Mom and I just joined the group and had a great time meeting the girls and seeing the pretty projects they were working on.

Saturday night Vince, Tasha and I headed to Irving to watch the Strikeforce fights at Vincent’s parents house. As usual, I fell asleep during the main event, but Vince was really excited Dan Henderson won. We spent the night and headed home Sunday morning for Mass at St. Patrick’s.

After church we headed to Northpark Mall to get Vincent’s watch looked at. I couldn’t resist getting my ring polished for FREE! It looks just like new and so sparkly! A quick trip to Whole Foods for this week’s groceries and we were headed home to spend the afternoon with Tasha girl. I finished choreographing a dance for the Rockwall High School cheerleaders that I’m teaching this week and Vincent and I made a super healthy yummy dinner!

Here’s to a great week ahead!

XOXO,

Vincent. Bri & Tasha Marie