Green and Saving

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

So, in this month's mortgage bill from those people that don't seem to want to just forgive all debt and GIVE me my house, I find this "Green for Green" statement. In it are all kinds of tidbits on being a better green consumer... some are even kind of smart. I liked the part about the new CFL (compact fluorescent bulb) light bulbs (I say new in a relative sense). Some of the facts they state are:
1. A single CFL has the life expectancy of 10 standard incandescent light bulbs.
2. If everyone changed over 1 light bulb from incandescent to CFL (yeah, just one bulb), you could save as much as $30 on your next energy bill.
3. Each CFL prevents 450+ pounds of greenhouse emissions gas over its lifetime. Now, I'm not jumping on the global warming bandwagon here, but I do believe that we should take care of the earth that God has given us to watch over...

So, want to know more? Go to I liked this quote from them:
"If every American replaced one light bulb with an Energy-Star qualified bulb, we would save enough energy to light more than 3 million homes for a year."
3 million homes. That pays.
*I feel as though I MUST mention here that CFL's contain Mercury... i.e. don't break them and don't throw them in your trashcan when you're done with them.

Another little something they had was a way to recycle your old decrepit cell phone(s). - they'll find your local retailer and give you a way to send in for free your old phone for money (or you can do it for a tax break instead). Yeah, more savings!

And this was another neat little website gadget...
Talk about making it easy... these people prompt you for the origin & destination zip codes along with a package weight & then they return you a page with all the rates from the top shipping companies... DHL, UPS, FedEx, USPS... all on one page. Yeah, even more savings!


Good grief. Is that my kid?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

This is your kid on cake and icing. And that's all I'm gonna say about that.


The eggs are coming, the eggs are coming!!

The ladies have certainly started picking up their paces on the laying of the eggs. We have a white hen laying and several of either the Barred Rocks or Rhode Island Reds laying because we're getting the brown eggs too. We've had 3 double yolk eggs so far, and one teeny tiny egg... Grace-sized. It was the cutest little thing I'd seen!
It's pretty exciting going out and finding 5 to 7 eggs a day now! And they'll be much more in the future - we have 22 hens you know!


Officially in the Terrible Twos...

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Well, it really is official now. We've had birthday number two at our house. That means that the toddler tantrums we've seen up until now were just the beginning - we're now in the terrible twos. But all in all, my little two-year-old girl is a good kid - tantrums and all. The cake wasn't quite as tall as last year's Princess tower cake but it was still a process. In the end, it resembled Elmo enough that Grace recognized it immediately (I still think it was a pretty creepy looking Elmo).

We had a fun birthday with quite a few friends and family there to celebrate her natal anniversary. Beth and her girls came as well as baby Lillian who brought her mommy and daddy with her. Lots of family and friends made the party fun for Grace and for her mommy and daddy too! We were glad to get to spend time with everyone and look forward to another year of surprises with Miss Grace!


Ba-GAWK! We have an egg!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Well, this really has been an eventful weekend... floor staining & all... but, apparently, the chickens have been busy as well. We have our FIRST egg! Let's see, I believe they're 19 weeks old now. Yeah! (Must have been quite a shock when that poor hen popped that thing out...)
Grace was quite proud of eat & wanted to eat it right away...


Our Exhaustion = Grace's Exhaustion

Long weekend for everyone! The previous post showed the process of staining the cement floor... well, it took all weekend to do it, and by the end, Courtney and I were both very tired. But apparently, so was Grace...


Let the Floor Staining Commence

It's all done. Finally. It turned about to be a little bigger job than I had initially thought - but mostly due to the fact that we were performing some of the steps without the benefit of powered machinery. All in all, it came out just fantastic. The floor went from the picture at the left to the picture at the bottom of the blog post. The process started way back when we stripped the carpet and cleaned the heck out of the floor - we never were able to strip the carpet glue all up - but it's OK.
The actual staining process began with protecting the walls with plastic. Once that was up, then the staining began. Pretty easy really - just a one gallon garden sprayer with the stain mixture in it. Smooth, even circular sprays of stain went down. We did decide to use a mop to "spread" the stain where it was a little heavy in areas. We let that dry for an hour or so and then came back in with the cleanup.
Now, I should give everyone fair warning - this was the toughest step... by far. We did this using simple cotton mops. I'm not sure how many other options there are for a homeowner (short of buying or renting equipment). This took quite a lot to get the excess stain up. At this point, the stain is dry and you're mopping up dry surface stain... as much as you can with a mop. The idea is to clean until you get "clear" water... quite frankly, we were just shooting for "translucent". After about 5 moppings with hose rinsing the mop after each section, we finally decided we had reached our peak of "translucency" (is that a word?). Anyway, "translucency" equals "exhaustion". So, we stopped and hoped for the best.
We let the floor dry overnight, went to church the next morning, and then came home and proceeded with the step of sweeping the floor until almost every microscopic speck of dust was gone... this may have been overkill.
We then used paint rollers on long handles to "roll" the cement sealant on the floor. One coat, let dry for 2 hrs, then the 2nd coat. That's what really brought the color and sheen to the floor.
We love our new basement floor!

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I Wanna Read!

  • The Way They Learn - Tobias
  • Teaching the Trivium - Bluedorn
  • The Well-Trained Mind
  • Get Wisdom! - Ruth Younts
  • Little House on the Prairie series - Laura Ingalls Wilder
  • The Pursuit of Holiness - Jerry Bridges
  • Primal - Mark Batterson
  • Hipster Christianity - Brett McCracken
  • Gospel Powered Parenting - William P. Farley
  • Five Things Every Christian Needs to Grow - RC Sproul
  • When People are Big and God is Small - Edward T. Welch
  • Chosen by God - RC Sproul
  • The Discipline of Grace - Jerry Bridges
  • Radical - David Platt

Reading it Now!

  • The New Read-Aloud Handbook - Trelease
  • Honey for a Child's Heart - Gladys Hunt
  • Little House in the Big Woods - Laura Ingalls Wilder
  • Bringing up Boys - Dr James Dobson

Past Reads

  • The Three R's - Ruth Beechick
  • Mary Pride's Complete Guide to Homeschooling
  • What is a Healthy Church? - Mark Dever
  • What is a Healthy Church Member? - Thabiti M. Anyabwile
  • Feminine Appeal - Carolyn Mahaney
  • Shepherding a Child's Heart - Ted Tripp
  • Crazy Love - Francis Chan
  • When Life is Hard - James MacDonald
  • Food and Love - Dr. Gary Smalley
  • For Women Only - Shaunti Feldhahn
  • For Men Only - Jeff and Shaunti Feldhahn
  • The Gospel for Real Life - Jerry Bridges
  • Living the Cross Centered Life - CJ Mahaney
  • Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman's Soul by John and Stasi Eldredge
  • Wild at Heart: Discovering the Secret of a Man's Soul - John Eldredge
  • Dare to Discipline - Dr. James Dobson
  • The No-Cry Sleep Solution - Elizabeth Pantley
  • Parenting is Not for Cowards by Dr. James Dobson
  • The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel
  • The Strong Willed Child by Dr. James Dobson

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