Saving Money When Practicing Hospitality

Let me start by saying that hospitality is not a gift, it is a command. “Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. Be hospitable to one another without complaint. As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.…” (1 Peter 4:8-10)

Notice the commands surrounding the part about being hospitable: keep fervent love for one another and serve one another with the gifts you have been given. Those are not things for us to choose to do, we are called to do them as Christian women and that is also the case with being hospitable. Some people may be better at it than you but you are just as called to invite others into your home as you are called to keep fervent love for one another.

Keep in mind since hospitality is something God commands then surely He is acquainted with the fact that it costs money, it is not a surprise to Him. I also think it is a GREAT use of God’s money. In our stewardship of His provision I think it pleases Him when we spend money on hospitality/loving the saints and strangers in our home. 
Continue reading Saving Money When Practicing Hospitality

How I Get My Groceries Delivered To My Door AND Save Money!

I love Safeway. I like their quality. I like their options. I just don’t like their prices. But here’s the good news! I have figured out how to shop at Safeway, get my groceries delivered for free, get a dollar off a gallon at the gas station AND save 25-45% off my grocery bill EVERY time! (p.s. I am not getting anything from Safeway for sharing this)

Here’s how I do it.

1) Go to: http://www.safeway.com/.

2) Sign up for: Just For U and for grocery delivery (you will have to sign up for both separately).

3) Go to Just For U and “clip” coupons. It doesn’t get much easier than this! You just push the button “add” and it’s put on to your account! Easiest couponing ever! ALWAYS look for a 20 cent gas reward coupon. This means for every $100 you spend you will get 20 cents off a gallon. (sometimes even more!) I also just saved $10 off on frozen pizzas with my just for u coupons! You also get extra gas rewards for using these coupons! For example today I got 220 EXTRA points toward my gas rewards from my “J4U Bonus”. (see receipt below) Gas rewards are such an extra perk to shopping with Safeway. We usually have a dollar off and that really adds up with a 15 passenger van to fill!

4) Go to your grocery delivery account. Continue reading How I Get My Groceries Delivered To My Door AND Save Money!

My 6th Birth Story

I have now delivered a precious little baby six times. You would think: “Six times! She’s got it down!” Nope. It’s never easy. In fact, it seems almost worse because I had five other times to remember how hard it was…and next time, Lord willing, I will have six memories 🙂

At about 30 weeks pregnant I started swelling. That was a new “pregnancy symptom” for me. Honestly, when women used to talk about swelling in pregnancy I didn’t think it sounded like a big deal. It does now. Mine was so bad my feet started to crack and I felt like my calves were going to burst open! Miserable. The only solution was to lay around (which I hate) and elevate my feet. On the days that I wouldn’t do this my swelling was like a bajillion times worse.

A couple weeks after the swelling started my blood pressure began increasing and so of course the scary word: preeclampsia started to be tossed around. The annoying thing was that this increased my anxiety which increased my blood pressure. It also increased at bedtime. Parents know what I am talking about! One night after a frustrating bedtime adventure my blood pressure was 154/100! I eventually handed bedtime every night off to my husband and took an epsom salt bath while he dealt with our dehydrated philosophers that needed a hug. Continue reading My 6th Birth Story

Why WE Don’t Live Within Our Means

We don’t live within our means. We could be spending a lot more money than we do. Our means, the amount in our savings, says: “go ahead and live a little” but in my husband’s wisdom he admonishes us as a family to save more rather than spend more. Future generations will reap what we sow.

We have plenty of money in savings because we:

  1. Don’t go out to eat more than once a month and we pretty much never go out to coffee.
  2. Plan very few trips. In fact, we hardly leave our house. I had been looking for a particular sippy cup for weeks. I went out to the van and saw it was there! Guess it had been a while since we had gone anywhere 🙂 Going places usually means spending money even if it’s only on gas. I must admit that we have more freedom in this because we live downtown, next to our church, the library, parks and family.
  3. Rarely buy new clothing.
  4. Only get one nice gift for the kids on their birthday. (What a waste so many toys can be!)
  5. Paid off our mortgage! Talk about making it easier to save money!
  6. We really try not to waste food…. or anything for that matter.

Here is a link with more of our tips on saving!

You see, just because you have the money to:

  • Go on more trips
  • Buy more toys
  • Go out to dinner often
  • Purchase new clothes etc.

Doesn’t mean you have to. Don’t spend money just because you have it. Buy what you NEED not what you WANT and then later in life you can buy what you want not just what you need without the guilt!

Too many are living outside of their means in the other direction. They spend money they don’t have and wonder why they are constantly struggling financially. I have also seen people get out of debt and then think that gives them the liberty to spend their money any way they please only to find themselves in debt again or living paycheck to paycheck.

My husband fulfilled one of his dreams to publish a book! We are all very excited and it has been such a joy to be able to invest in this dream of his without having to worry about the money we are putting into it because we have plenty saved up. Another huge benefit of living like this is we are better able to give!

Please don’t think we have plenty in savings because we make lots of money 🙂 We have been single income our whole marriage (except for a few months that I did substitute teaching) and my husband went from being a public school teacher to a pastor… neither of which are known for their high income 🙂

Not sure how to live within a budget?! Dave Ramsey can help! Click here. 

Lastly, every human should watch this. It cracks me up and it’s so true! 🙂

So save up your money and then save more! Don’t live within your means. Live below your means and watch your savings grow.

contentment

Have you checked out my husband’s book, Marriage God’s Way?

I’m Not Ready To Be A Mom

I woke up this morning to a sweet text message from my husband thanking me and the kids for our patience with him while he is working on his book. Since the book is separate from his work for the church body here, he has to work on it on his day off and very early mornings and late evenings and that means we don’t get to see him very much. On top of that I am swelling up like a blow fish this pregnancy, nauseated around the clock, suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome and feeling large and unattractive and stressed.

notready

My husband is like my rock. He is steady and strong. I depend on him a lot, especially when I am overwhelmed. Not having him around has been even harder in these last few weeks of pregnancy (I am due July 22nd) but I wouldn’t have it any other way because I am so excited about this book and how God will use it to strengthen marriages! I am also thankful that it will be done before our little Noah gets here since I also struggle with postpartum depression/anxiety and I will need him even more then. Continue reading I’m Not Ready To Be A Mom

Why Our Family Doesn’t Say The Sinner’s Prayer

sinnersprayerThere is a message out there in modern day Christianity that screams: “You must have a day and time that you ‘invited Jesus into your heart’ to know when you were officially saved.” But according to Christ, what we MUST do is be born again (John 3:3-7). We must be a new creation in which there is evidence of the old passing away and God making all things new. That’s what I want to teach my kids.

I remember at the age of 19 knowing the Holy Spirit was working mightily in my life… calling me out of this world and beckoning me to become a true child of God. I answered His call and I was born again. I never said the sinner’s prayer. I simply repented and turned from my old life to my new life in Christ.  I don’t recall an exact time and place that I “officially became a Christian.” But I know that I am born again.

Children are fickle and the bible says foolishness is bound up in their hearts (prov. 22:15). I have been at many vbs programs where the children “come forward and say the sinners prayer” and it’s a lot of the same children that came forward the year before… are they getting saved again? That is one of the dangerous pitfalls in circles that I have seen where the sinner’s prayer is mandatory. So much confidence wrapped up in a few words. This man testifies to those sorts of dangers here. So much confidence wrapped up in a few words. Continue reading Why Our Family Doesn’t Say The Sinner’s Prayer

Reversing Our Decision

meholdingchloe
Me holding our second reversal baby: Sweet Chloebug.

Scott and I really struggled with the decision on how many children to have. I think it is a bigger decision than deciding who you will marry. Let me explain. Who you marry will affect many (especially yourself) but how many children you choose to have determines if someone is born! And if you decide to let that someone be born then you are deciding for generations of others to be born! That is insane. That is scary. That is sobering. And yet, so many flippantly decide to stop having children because, quite frankly, “they’re DONE!”.

I remember vividly standing in the kitchen doing dishes when Scott and I were in the middle of deciding to have a vasectomy reversal or not and I said to the Lord: “I just don’t feel like I am wise enough to decide if and when life should come into this world.” I also felt this resounding statement in my mind: “Katie, never make a decision based on fear.”  That was a turning point for me…

I have what is called hyperemesis, you can read about it here. Basically I am ridiculously sick throughout my entire pregnancy. I puke… A LOT and I am always nauseous, up till the moment they come out (I puke even through out labor). This is difficult. When Scott and I got married we said we would let God plan our family… that was before I had ever been pregnant and experienced what felt like death… ironically while my body was producing life!

After that first pregnancy I was terrified to get pregnant ever again! “I can’t keep doing this!” I thought. “How am I going to home school and have kids back to back and be sick 24 hours a day?!” Continue reading Reversing Our Decision