Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Couponing 101: Part 4

This one is so easy it's going to knock your socks off. Or your flip flops if you're not a sock wearer. I'm not. A sock wearer, that is. Spring rolls around and Old Navy supplies me with an endless assortment of colors in flip flop style. Putting them away in fall may be one of the hardest things I do...

Did I mention I tend to ramble? : )

Numero Quatro:

BE IN THE KNOW. The Dish. The 411. 

I subscribe to several blogs via e-mail so that I can peruse the deals at leisure. The sign up link is usually on the right side of the page at the top. And it's free. Just sayin'. There are tons more out there - these just happen to be the ones I follow. They usually have the same deals posted and vary only slightly (but it's that slightly that sometimes brings in the great deals).

The Krazy Coupon Lady

Money Saving Mom Food Lion (and other regional stores) deals HERE.

Deal Seeking Mom

Coupon Connections

This Frugal Life

For limited-time coupons or when I'm on-the-go/homeschooling, I've 'liked' couponing pages on facebook. Then I discreetly check my phone when it buzzes during school and not-so-discreetly give a huge WHOOP!! and run to the computer to get a free full-size product. I really wish I was kidding... And I hate to admit it, but I've liked so many manufacturer pages on fb to get coupons that I now receive most deals ahead of the couponing blogs. Here are the facebook pages I follow (you'll need to already have a facebook account to like these):

I Heart Kroger

A Frugal Chick

"Cents"able Mom

Coupon Beat

Stockpiling Moms

Coupon Pro

You can also go like the fb pages of the blogs I mentioned earlier - blogs usually have an 'f' link at the top right for their fb page.

Friday, May 6, 2011

The Military, Living Overseas and a Failed Marriage (AKA Part One)

I visit a lot of blogs and often get frustrated that there simply isn't enough information to judge what kind of people they are... or even what kind of Christians they are (not that I'm JUDGING... but I do like to know who I'm talking to).

As I was recently having this thought, I realized that I'm a little sparse in the info area.

So here is the slightly stylized, very abbreviated story of me.

I apologize if it seems like you're reading the exploits of a mentally deranged person (these are supposed to be uplifting and encouraging, after all!) - it gets better I promise!


 A year after graduating from high school (in Panama City, FL!) I joined the Air Force, following in my father's footsteps. I was immature, immodest, conceited, arrogant, stubborn (that one may still be in the house), and generally just not very educated about the world at large. In short, I was a teenager. 

After finishing basic training in San Antonio, TX my dad said I had a mouth like a sailor. But I had finally learned how to properly run (after throwing up a few times) and follow orders (after crying a few times).  I hear the Air Force basic training is pretty nice compared to the other services.

Then I went to technical school in Biloxi, MS where I almost didn't learn how to work on computers. Did but almost didn't. Halfway through I became much more concerned with my social life than I should have been. Just to give you a picture of how very self-focused I was.

When I completed tech school, I was assigned to Kunsan (koon-sahn) Air Base in South Korea. WHAT?!?! Yep. South Korea. I was shocked too. And I quickly found out that if you do not have a solid moral system in place, you won't keep your head above water.

Suffice it to say that I don't remember most of my first year there. Or adequately recall the names of all of my "boyfriends". I am not proud of that year and I deeply regret how I spent it... drinking, smoking and much worse stuff. I cannot ever take it back but I can and have learned from it. It's very obvious now that I was not at all prepared to be in charge of my own life... Parents: take this as a warning to prepare your children and not shelter them! (I still claim complete responsibility though)

My second year in Korea was much calmer after I became completely disillusioned with these vices (except smoking) when I witnessed my friends' drunk cavorting while I was on call (could not drink). Someone licked a floor. It was not funny. It was gross. And like me, they probably didn't even remember what they did. (that's only one example... much worse things happened).

I may have stopped all of the idiocy but everyone remembered it and, to them, I WAS still that person.

Mind you - I still dressed scantily, smoked, and hung around the same people. I spent more time in the gym, at work, and volunteering but mistakes cannot be erased just because YOU say they are.


Towards the end of my tour there, I met a complete stranger, had a handful of dates with him and felt very loved because someone treated me nicely without wanting more. He asked me to marry him and I said yes. 

Can we collectively slap our hands to our foreheads? *SMACK* Annnd done.

We came back to the states, got married, had a horribly honeymoon (don't ask) and he went back to Korea for the rest of his tour while I went to my next assignment at Dyess Air Force Base in Abilene, TX.

It did not go well from there. 

Apparently, you cannot actually get to know someone in a matter of weeks. The older me can look back and see that I was just at fault as he was. The younger me is wanting to make a list of everything he did wrong. He left and I have not seen him since. It took a year to get a divorce because I could not find him. Divorced.

I am forever going to be a divorced person now and I am grieved that I am a horrible example to those who know me on  how to resolve marital issues. I cannot express enough how much that distresses me. I don't want people to believe that if at first you don't succeed at marriage, try try again. If I had been this person then, it may have worked out. It's not about who they are - it's about who you are! (this does apply to abuse, obviously)

This concludes Part One, but stay tuned for Part Two... it gets really steamy. 

Kidding! But don't worry, it's only uphill from here!
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