Thanks, KMart!

My mom and I spent the afternoon (about two hours) taking advantage of KMart’s offer to double coupons up to $2. The KMart we went to did not have the grocery store part but we still got some great deals. A few things about our trip…

1. They don’t make it easy for you. Unlike other stores that are likely to put all of one brand on sale, KMart only selects certain items, in certain quantities. It is a little tricky.
2. Some of their regular prices are definitely higher than other stores.
3. I am pretty sure their sales are regional and I probably should have looked at a local flyer. Many of the deals I saw on Hip 2 Save were not available at my KMart. This was a trip where you take you the WHOLE coupon file with you. You might just run into a deal you did not expect.
4. My cashier said you were only allowed to use 25 coupons; I only had 21 to use so it did not matter to me but I am curious if this is truly enforced.

My best purchases were on dog treats. And as you may know, my dog is basically my child. So Piper did well with this trip.

I know he looks scared of the treats but really he is just focused on D who is bribing him to sit for the picture.

My total at the cash register was about $63. I had a $5 off $50 or more coupon taking it down to $58. Then the cashier entered in the 20 coupons I gave her and my final out-of-pocket expense was $10.95. I cannot tell you how awesome it was to watch the total go down. And I did not buy a single thing that we will not use.

The way I see it, I essentially paid full price for these items:

And got all these for free:

I hope that makes sense; it does in my mind. Sorry if you are totally bored by this post.

Happy Birthday, K!!!

Today is K’s birthday. She is turning 26. However, she is not particularly excited to be 26. I don’t really understand it, but she said something about being in her “late twenties” now and how that makes her feel old. Also, I guess she’s not a huge fan of sixes.

K has stated numerous times to me that she is no longer cool anymore. We’ve been to one concert in the past two years. We sit at home with our dog and pretend to talk like him. K can’t stay up past 10:30, even if we have guests (sorry Brad and Meredith). She doesn’t listen to music anymore, just NPR and books on tape. The highlight of the week is watching LOST and The Office. This is just a short list of the many things that makes K think she’s not cool anymore (Wait, I guess that means I’m not cool as well).

As K stated in my birthday post, we have known each other since we were 13. So we now officially have known each other for half of our lives. And while she might not meet her standards of “cool” anymore, I enjoy every minute we spend together (outside of when she’s watching Grey’s Anatomy).

Here are just a few of the many highlights:

  • K enjoys her own jokes immensely. She thinks her jokes are great and can’t help but laugh at them.
  • K will always make sure a car door or cabinet is shut. When she is closing something, you will hear it loud and clear.
  • When watching TV or listening to something, K sometimes subconsciously makes the weirdest faces. It’s like she’s enjoying something so much she can’t help herself.
  • Along the same lines, if I’m telling a story we both already know to someone else, I can guarantee that K will be mouthing the words along with me, just to make sure I’m getting it correct.
  • K absolutely adores our nieces and nephews. She will do anything for them. Also, she will buy almost anything for them.
  • Ka spoils are dog Piper to no end. He is a high maintenance dog because of her.
  • K, while having to listen to her husband talk all the time, is never hard to have a conversation with. Part of that is probably because I could talk to a tree. But the other part is that she is very intelligent and has lots of thoughts on many things. Our conversations are always enjoyable because…
  • K is a very passionate person. She has a strong heart to help those in need, specifically children.

Most importantly, K is passionate about God. That’s what drives her to help those in need. She doesn’t want her life to be all about herself or her comfort. That’s the greatest thing I could ever ask for. I get to see someone every day who has passion and work ethic for God’s heart.

So K is into her late twenties. That is true. Being young provides a future unknown and a willingness to go and do whatever you want. K and I have no clue what God has planned for us in our future. But I know that I have a wife who will be willing to do whatever God has called us to with passion, no matter how challenging it may be. So maybe she’s still young and cool after all.

25 Random Things

I got “tagged” on Facebook and I thought I would go ahead and post this here as well.

1. You can tell me it is stupid, but I am not happy about turning 26 next month. For some reason, I really just want to go back to 23.

2. I am passionate about adoption and foster care. I am also passionate about giving women (& men) the tools they need to choose life for their child and to be good parents. Overall, I am passionate about redemption.

3. I love listening to well told stories (for example, This American Life & The Moth podcasts).

4. I work for a non-profit ministry with some of the most wonderful women I have ever known.

5. As long as I can remember, I’ve been a bit obsessed with celebrities. I’m breaking myself of this habit.

6. I was not interested in going to Israel but went because my husband really wanted to go. I am so glad I went and would love to go back someday.

7. I hope the next major trip we take is to Africa.

8. I would be lost without my iGoogle home page.

9. My official degree from MSU is a BA in “Interdisciplinary Studies in Social Science – Community Relations & Public Policy and Public Administration.” It was a double major and I had to write it down for my parents because they could not remember it.

10. Working at a bakery with some friends was the only enjoyable thing about my high school years.

11. I love movies and love that the Oscars generally take place the Sunday closest to my birthday. It has become part of my celebration.

12. I would love to live in Colorado but would miss everyone here too much (including my husband, who has no interest in living there).

13. I love to cook but do not have the time to do so.

14. I have a reoccurring dream that it is the last day of the semester and I have to take an exam for a class I forgot I was enrolled in. It is always terrifyingly realistic.

15. I have recently come to realize that my mother is one of the funniest people on the planet.

16. I could easily spend all my money on the following: Mason, Elliana, Willow and Shay (my nieces & nephews).

17. Three movies I could watch over and over are: Meet Me In St. Louis, Walk the Line and Chocolat.

18. If I cannot do something perfectly, I tend to quit it all together. Another habit I am trying to break.

19. When I was four or five, I got my first dog, Freckles. He did not house train well and my mom took him “to a new home.” I am still kind of upset about this.

20. I met D when I was 13. We did not start dating until we were 20 and living nearly 300 miles apart.

21. Last year, I tried to train for a 5K. Three days into running, I got a stress fracture in my knee. Pathetic.

22. I am hopelessly non-athletic. D tried to teach me to play tennis and it ended in tears.

23. I really love being married to a youth pastor despite all the dodgeball (which I do not play due to #22).

24. I have strange fear of abnormal produce. For example, little peppers growing inside of bell peppers really freak me out.

25. I am pretty much always on time even if I try to be late. I attribute this to my father.

Christmas Time Is Here

This post is dedicated to my dear friend, Meredith, who LOVES CHRISTMAS. I hope the fact that my tree is up on November 15 makes up for the fact that I have not decorated the last two years. We decorated the tree and enjoyed the new Rosie Thomas album, “A Very Rosie Christmas.”

A Few Random Thoughts

I have started writing posts several times in the past week but haven’t had the time to put them together well. So, here are a few random thoughts and updates from the B household…

1. D and I watched the debate last night. I don’t think it helped either of us out at all. The candidates did not speak to any of the issues that Dan and I really care about. It actually just made me cranky and anxious.

2. We are doing a Compassion by Command group with our church and it is going really well. It has been interesting to learn about God’s heart for those in need and examining our own thoughts about poverty and wealth. Our church has broken into small groups to go through this study and it is encouraging to know that we attend a church who wants to help those in need in our community.

3. We need Halloween costumes. Our church is having a neighborhood Halloween party and Dan and I both need suggestions. If you don’t help us out D is going to go as a soccer player again and I’m going to get out my old clothes from college and go as a hippie. Any ideas?

4. We are traveling a bit over the next few months. In early November, we are headed to South Carolina for the Together for Adoption Conference. The following week I head out to Colorado Springs for the Care Net Client Marketing Solutions training and to see my wonderful, little brother. Then it looks like we are headed to Israel in January. More on that later…

Hopefully, we will have a better post for you soon. I am in the middle of the busiest season of work right now and D is taking four classes at MTS so things are a bit crazy.

Happy Birthday, D!

Today Dan turns 26. Later in the month, we’ll be doing what every 26 year old wants to do for their birthday…playing laser tag. That was D’s birthday wish. When I went to Zap Zone to book the party I was expecting for the lady at the counter to chuckle when I told her it was for my husband. But when she asked for the age of the guests and I said, “Well, they are all guys in their 20s and 30s” she did not seem to think anything of it. I guess it is more normal than I thought.

I have known D since were were 13 years old which means I have known him for half of his life now. While some things have changed, D has one prominent quality that has always been the same.

D is a people person. He talks to everyone. We will be out to dinner somewhere and across the restaurant he will see someone he may have only met a handful of times and he MUST say hello and find out about their life. I don’t think he can even control this. This can be hard for his introverted wife. But what is comes down to is that Dan is good at loving people. And his love for people is a direct result of his love for God. I have much to learn from him.

I had a lot of qualities in mind for a husband before D and I started dating. Two very specific qualities were apparent two months or so into our relationship. My standards were pretty high and I was prepared to be single for quite a while. They have all been surpassed. Happy Birthday, D…you are my favorite.


This is my first “tagged” experience in the blog world. Thanks, Shannon!

Each of these questions is to be answered with one word only! Here’s mine:

1. Where is your cell phone? purse
2. Your significant other? reading
4. Your mother? grace
5. Your father? encourager
6. Your favorite thing? aunt-ness
7. Your dream last night? unknown
8 Your favorite drink? cranwater
9. Your dream/goal? adoption
10. The room you’re in? family
11. Your hobby? blogs
12. Your fear? snakes
13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? parenthood
14. What you’re not? patient
15. Muffins? gluten
16. One of your wish list items? mac
17. Where you grew up? troy
18. The last thing you did? cardmaking
19. What are you wearing? clothes
20. Favorite gadget? ipod
21. Your pets? piper
22. Your computer? useful
23. Your mood? content
24. Missing someone? jeffy
25. Your car? vibe
26. Something you’re not wearing? socks
27. Favorite store? lucy
28. Like someone? dan
29. Your favorite color? green
30. When is the last time you laughed? tonight
31. Last time you cried? recently

Is anyone else wondering what happened to #3?

I’m tagging the Chasey’s.

Let Your Voice Be Heard

Ok, here’s the deal. I didn’t have time (or energy) to shave during Summer Camp and then didn’t get around to it for another 5 days after I got back (because I’m lazy like that). So I decided on Saturday that I would shave everything but my mustache. When I got home from playing basketball K informed me that she was not a fan.

I now am reaching out to the tens of you who read this to leave a comment on whether you like the mustache D or the clean shaven D. We’ll make it a little poll. Choose your preference in the comments (everyone needs to vote) and I’ll tally them and let you know which look wins.

Mustache D
Boring non-mustache D

K Gets Support from Her Friends

Four times a year K and I go down to Cornerstone Schools. Cornerstone is a school in Detroit with a few different locations that seeks to make an excellent education for students in Detroit. There are partners who help pay for the students to go to school (along with Parents, who pay some cost for their kids to attend). They have four “partner days” where the people that donate money come down and spend the morning with the students they are helping support. Some of this kids don’t have a specific partner on those days, so K and I volunteer to be “Good Samaritans” and hang out with them for the morning. We go to the second grade classrooms.

All that to say, after each “partner day” we get a letter from the kids we got to hang out with. K had four kids that she spent time with. Here are their letters to her:

Dear Ms. B,
Thank you for visiting our school. We really appreciate it. I’m glad that you helped me with the project. It was very fun. I hope you can come see us again. We miss you very much. God bless you.
– E

Dear Ms. B,
Thank you for coming. I look forward seeing you again. I am going to the Tiger’s baseball game for Cornerstone. Can you come? I look forward to seeing you next year. Have a great summer. Stay Cool. May God Bless you in a lot of ways.
p.s. Thank you for coming.
– A

Dear Ms. B,
Thanks for joining our Cornerstone family. I had a good time being with you. I had a fun time making the flowers for people in the nursing home. To have a great time is to have a special crime. I hope you can come back for the baseball game in September. I will write another letter another time bye!!
– D

And my favorite one of all (remember K is gluten free):

Dear Ms. B,
Thank you for coming and sharing your job with us. I am sorry that you can’t eat cookies, but they are really good especially the chocolate chip. Do you like fish and shrimp? I can’t eat fish but I can’t eat shrimp. God bless you.
– M