<![CDATA[A Woman Redeemed - Faithful Frenzied Finances]]>Sat, 27 May 2017 23:42:37 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[Is it Alright.... to Desire "Stuff?" My Personal Struggle Revealed...]]>Fri, 20 Jan 2017 13:48:07 GMThttp://awomanredeemed.com/faithful-frenzied-finances/is-it-alright-to-desire-stuff-my-personal-struggle-revealed
Today, I share with you, a personal dilemma.  For the most part, I do not consider myself a materialistic person.  I love to shop, I love cute new clothes, I love getting my nails and hair done, but I also try to live fiscally responsibly.

Garrick and I strive to live as debt free is possible, which is why purchasing a newer vehicle was a big struggle for both of us.  We put it off for quite some time.  I still hate that we have debt, but truly feel purchasing the car was the right decision for us.  

I am going to let you in a little secret today.... though I hate debt and really strive to be a good steward with the money God has entrusted us with; I have my struggles!!  

I go through seasons where I am extremely diligent with budgeting and saving and paying off debt and then I have my seasons (kind of like a woman on a diet with a pan of brownies in front her face) where I just don't care and I become a little too frivolous!  I find that this season of rears its ugly head in the winter months, after Christmas. 

I suddenly want to repaint, redecorate and fill my home and closet with newer and more eye appealing things.  It bring me joy and I get a sense of happiness when making those purchases.  

I ask... is there anything wrong with that?  

As simple as this question may be, the answer is fairly complex.  

No, it is not a bad thing or a sinful thing to desire "stuff."  After all, God tells us in His word that He longs to give us the desires of our heart.  (Psalm 37:4)  Like an earthly father and child, it brings God joy to give His children good things.  

HOWEVER, there is a HUGE cautionary note to take here..... and here is where my struggle lays.... it is once again.... the heart. 

I have found that often, at the same time I begin longing for new things and stuff I am often struggling with discontentment in life in general.  Almost as if I am searching from a way to escape reality.  And if I also dig deeper, I will find that my connection with God is lacking.  I am not finding my joy and delight in Him as I normally do, therefore, leaving me seeking out external things to fulfill that void. 

I compare it to eating when you are really not hungry, but maybe just bored or stressed.  You are trying to fill an emotional or heart need with an external fix.  And as we all know, that fix is very temporary!!  That is why it really is not a fix at all.  It's a DIVERSION! 

Now, this is not always the case! Because I have become so focused on living on a budget, I often go on what I call "starvation diets!"  One of the very things I caution others about not doing in one of my blog videos!  I become so obsessed with saving money and not spending any that when I do allow myself to spend a little, it is like opening the flood gates of spending hell!! LOL

I am currently going through one of those seasons and I praise God that I am able to recognize it and pray that He reigns me in!!!  

My husband, being the very generous man he is with me, always encourages me to spend money when I desire to, telling me I deserve it.  While I love him for this, very often, I use it to justify what I know to be wrong in my heart.  

I cannot fix discontentment with stuff..... I only add to the problem.  Very often, I later feel guilty for spending the money and the happiness I felt at the moment of the purchase is now a moot point. (or as Joey on Friends would say.... "A MOO point, like a cow's opinion, it doesn't matter!!) Bahaaaaaaaaaaa!!!  I had to... sorry.... I couldn't help myself!!
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My newest purchase!! I gel manicure LED light!!!! I am pretty excited about his little treat!

So, my most recent purchase, I made last night!  I love to get my nails done and although I will do them at home, they tend to chip fairly quickly in comparison to a gel manicure that lasts 2 weeks!  Over Christmas, my sister, who does hair for a living, did my nails for me with her new little LED gel manicure light!  I was hooked!  I knew that long term, it would be a worthwhile purchase as it will save me tons of money on manicures.  Mind you, I only get one about once every 2-3 months, but this would make is possible as often as I wanted!  

This was one of those purchases that I felt was not frivolous and actually can be used to serve others and has great money saving potential!
I used it last night and I super impressed!  Though I have a ways to do in looking like a professional.... I believe it is going to be well worth the $60.00 I spent on it!  That included the polishes and all!!  

ANYONE WANT THEIR NAILS DONE!!!  I am happy to serve!!!
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Here is the finished product!!! So far... I LOVE IT!
So here is my answer to this million dollar question..... is it wrong to want or desire stuff?  No, unless it is being used to fill a void and replace the contentment we are to feel in the presence of God, which, I have been very guilty of!

God loves to give us good gifts and very often we are blessed for obedience and service to Him, however, when we choose to bless ourselves out of a selfish need to feel emptiness we are feeling, God so desires to be that filler.  

I am a firm believer that most peoples mountains of debt is not due to needs or even occasional desires.... but that pile of debt is a direct reflection of the need for God in their life.  That thousands of dollars of debt..... is very likely thousands of cries for God that we brought to a piece of plastic rather than God's ears.  

Do you struggle with this? If so.... it is never too late to begin filing those Gaps with God's joy... that is eternal.....

Peace and Blessings
Your Friend
Missy



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<![CDATA[Why I Didn't Win the Lottery!]]>Thu, 29 Dec 2016 14:03:09 GMThttp://awomanredeemed.com/faithful-frenzied-finances/why-i-didnt-win-the-lottery
A vast majority of the time, I am pretty content with the resources God has blessed us with.  God has truly taught me the gift of contentment and learning to make do with whatever He chooses to give me.  

And though I occasionally long for something new or "better" for the most part, I am very happy with hand me down furniture and used vehicles.  

I am very grateful for this as I believe it has kept Garrick and I from plummeting into the pit of major debt many others face.  We try very hard to live within our means and pray diligently before we make big purchases.  

About six years ago, we were on a diligent pursuit to pay off the debt we did have.  We still had a car payment and I still had a student loan from UNI.  Once we made a committed decision to do this, God blessed us with the ability to do so.  We paid off our car and the loan within two years and it was an AMAZING feeling!  This just made our desire to stay out of debt stronger.  

I can honestly say, once you allow yourself to jump into debt, it becomes much easier to continue racking up more.  You kind of get the attitude... "well I'm never going to pay it off, so I may as well have more!"  

Finances have always been somewhat of a stressor for me, probably due to the way I grew up, with money, or the lack there of, always being a stressor that produced many heated quarrels in our home.  From a very young age, I kind of became a money hoarder.  I always wanted to save my money.  Having money tucked away, I believe brought me some type of security.  And while this can be a very good thing, I believe I took it to extremes, leaving no room for God's provisions.  I made it MY job or Garrick's job to provide and if I did not have that money, I felt we were doomed.  

Because of my somewhat "unhealthy" obsession with staying out of debt and keeping a decent savings account, making large purchases causes me much stress and anxiety.  

Recently, we began having one issue after another with our vehicle.  It was ten years old and had 155,000 miles on it.  We milked the car as long as we could, throwing large chunks of money at it left and right, trying to avoid taking on a car payment.  

The thought of a car payment did me in.  I longed for a newer car and would look at them often, but when it came time to actually buy one, I could never do it.  

Well, after putting mega money into the car, recently another major thing started to do wrong with it.  As Garrick and I prayed for God to reveal what we were to do, the car continued to have issues.  I think God was making it clear, however, we continued to focus on the NO DEBT mentality.  

That is, until God spoke to Garrick and told him is was time to purchase a newer and safe car for his family and at the same time God revealed this to him, I happen to stumble upon the very car I wanted, in our price range mind you. 

It all fell together pretty perfectly and we dove in, in faith and purchased the car!  While I am convinced this was the absolute right decision, I still struggle with having debt and a car payment after not having one for many years.  

So much so, that it has lead me to pray and ask for things that I normally would not!  On the way home from Chicago at Christmas, we stopped at a big oasis with food establishments.  As we were walking out, I saw a scratch off ticket lottery machine.  I thought to myself, I had a dream the other night I won the lottery with a scratch off ticket, I think I'll buy one!  I want to pay off this car!
Mind you, I have not bought a lottery ticket in a zillion years!  For no other reason other than, I trusted the money I was given is the money God wanted me to have and playing the lottery is telling God I am no longer content with what you give me, I want more!!

Well, I bought 3 tickets and won $8 total.  So, I got back what I paid in, but I did not hit the jackpot by any means and it left me feeling frustrated!  

I know.... how silly is that???  I kept saying, God, all I want to do is pay off the car and maybe put money toward Addy's braces!  I don't want luxuries!!  I just couldn't understand why He didn't want me to win that darn money!! LOL

Then this morning, I read this.... 
"Remove far from me falsehood and lying;give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food that is needful for me, lest I be full and deny you." Proverbs 30:8-9

I am asking for riches because at the core, I do not trust God to faithfully provide what I need to make a car payment every month or feel comfortable doing so.  If God were to give me that money, it would deny me a very rich and needed lesson in faith and trust.  Each month I will learn to trust in God's provisions. knowing He will always provide as I know He will.  

Though God often blesses me with things I want and don't necessarily NEED, His goal is provide what I NEED to survive, while finding contentment in Him not stuff or things!  

If He gives me riches, I may begin placing my trust and contentment in money and things rather than Him. Believing, I have everything I want, I don't need God!

 If He brings me to poverty, I may struggle with wanting to steal or take things that aren't mine so I can have the things I want!

My goal needs to being content with whatever God provides, trusting He will always do so.  Knowing what He chooses to give me, is what He knows I need and not placing the security of money over His great provisions!

So today.... I understand why God does not want me win the lottery or have a bank account overflowing with money!  I understand why He has allowed me to have a car payment and how His only goal is to draw me closer and closer to Him.  

I pray today, that you find contentment with where God has you, trusting that sometimes, what appears to us to be His lack of giving, is often His greatest blessing!!

Peace and Blessings
Your Friend 
Missy




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<![CDATA[Easy Inexpensive Last Minute Gifts!]]>Thu, 15 Dec 2016 13:00:40 GMThttp://awomanredeemed.com/faithful-frenzied-finances/easy-inexpensive-last-minute-gifts
Well... some of you may have already thrown in the towel when it comes to the whole "trying to save money thing," around this time of year.  Believe me... I get that!!  

However.... I ask you... don't give up quite yet!  We all have those little last minute gifts that we need to grab for coworker, friends, neighbors, teachers or any other person you can think of.  All of those little gifts can add up.  And then of course you are always stumped on what to buy at least one person on your list.  You know... the person that has everything or doesn't really like anything??

I have been researching some great last minute, easy, inexpensive and thoughtful gift ideas that just might help you out!  

  1.  GIFT BASKETS!

This is my all time favorite idea for anyone!!  It is versatile, fun to put together and who doesn't love getting a box or basket full of their favorite goodies!  

Now, I wish I had thought ahead and put together some baskets to show you, but, this is me we are talking about and planning ahead, often does not happen! LOL  So you will have to create the vision in your head!

The other great thing about gift baskets is you don't necessarily have to know specifically what this person loves because choosing a few different things, you are bound to include something they will use and adore!

Do a combo of practical gifts as well as fun, inspirational and tasty!  You can normally find all of the items to fill a basket at one store such as Target, Walmart, Dollar General or The Dollar Tree.  

First choose a basket or cute box. Depending on the size you can get these relatively inexpensive and there are some adorable Christmas and holiday boxes out there!!

For a male, a basket may be more appropriate. Now,, choose some cute Christmas tissue paper!  I found adorable tissue at... you know it... TJ MAXX!!  

Now start filling!!  

Here are some ideas..

FOR THE MAN-  Men can be a little more difficult, however, being married to one, I can tell you some items he would love to get in a basket that most people may not think of.  

-A nice and healing hand cream!  My husband gets horrible dried and cracked hands this time of year, especially working construction.  A lot of men probably do, but would never go out and buy themselves hand cream!!  There are manly hand creams out there and more importantly, some really good ones for skin that is in rough shape!  

-A box of their favorite tea or coffee and maybe a big mug or travel mug!  My husband can be somewhat of a coffee snob.  He likes GOOD coffee.Being the frugal woman I am, you get what is on sale! LOL  You could also throw a $10 gift card to Starbucks or any other coffee place in with the mug and coffee!  There is a great basket!  

-A subscription to the Dollar Shave Club!  This is the best thing I have really ever gotten my husband, well... almost.  For $6 a month they have nice new razors delivered to their door and you can also purchase different shaving creams and such to go along with it.  Here is the link
https://www.dollarshaveclub.com/?utm_source=goog&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=dollar%20shave%20club&utm_campaign=branded-usa&cvosrc=cpc.google.dollar%20shave%20club&matchtype=e&mobile=&creative=49253005670&adposition=1t1
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The Fall giveaway basket I created!!

-Little flash lights, handy tools and gadgets!  I don't get it, but my husband loves little tools and gadgets!  I bought him a stocking cap for his birthday that has LED lights on it and you would have thought I bought him a new truck!  LO Men love gadgets.... 

-TEACHERS- You could fill their basket with a favorite treat, even homemade. You could also find a cute little picture or sign that has a quote about children or teaching. Hand sanitizer from Bath and Body works is another great idea as well as a cute mug, insulated water glass and for humor you could throw in a bottle of ibuprofen!!!

- NEIGHBORS- I love the idea of homemade goodies, I do this alot.  Other ideas for neighbors would be if it's a couple, matching coffee mugs and some nice coffee or tea.  A basket with items to make a meal, such as; a box of noodles, some good Spaghetti sauce, a loaf of nice french bread and a candle for their dinner!!  

-COWORKER or SECRET SANTA- You can get really creative as you may not know what this person really likes at all!  Go with a practical gift such as; a mild smelling hand cream or fun chap stick (they have gingerbread and sugar cookie chapstick this time of year!!) It it's a female... a cute pair of fuzzy, warm socks, some nice warm gloves, a cute scarf, CHOCOLATE, some fun pens and note cards.  I could on and on with this one!  Women are fairly easy I think!  Men think we are difficult to buy for.... I don't know about you.... but I would love anyone of the above mentioned items!  

One last gift idea I want to share that would be GREAT for a female you are not sure what to get is a subscription to IPSY.  I have one and it is one of my favorite things... EVER!  For $10 a month (so $120 a year) you get an adorable make up bag delivered to your door full of make up, skin care and hair products!  It is so fun and it is something to look forward to all year.  It is a little more costly, so this would not be for everyone, but perhaps a close friend, mama or family member!!

Here is the link...https://www.ipsy.com/

So there you have it! I pray these give you some ideas for those last minute or gifts that have you stumped!!

HAPPY SHOPPING!!!!

Peace and Blessings
Your Friend
Missy
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<![CDATA[My Favorite Ways to Save Money on Christmas AND My Current Favorite Stores!]]>Wed, 30 Nov 2016 12:46:05 GMThttp://awomanredeemed.com/faithful-frenzied-finances/my-favorite-ways-to-save-money-on-christmas-and-my-current-favorite-stores
I have always, always, always loved this time of year.  I could go on and on again about all of my wonderful childhood memories of Christmas, BUT, I won't!!! LOL  What I can tell you... is shopping with my grandma as a youngster and then young adult are some of my very favorite memories!!

I love to shop!  LOVE IT!  However, being the frugal woman God has made me, I don't always like to spend money!  And sometimes it is not that I don't want to spend it, the extra money just may not be there to spend.  I am sure you all can relate to that one!  

So Christmas can sometimes be a stressful time of year for people not because they don't love the festivities but because of the extra money involved.  And it does seem that every which way you turn this time of year, there is a hand reaching in your wallet.  I get that!  So today, I am going to share with you some of my favorite ways to save money at Christmas as well as my current favorite stores to buy thrifty but nice and meaningful gifts!!!

1. I try to shop early!  Now, I know this is kind of a moot point since it is almost December, but this is one thing I do try to do.  I attempt to spread out the spending so it does not hit me all at one time!  Now, that I am doing the cash system, this coming year I will be WAY more diligent in putting money away for Christmas each pay period.  I have always pondered doing this but never followed through.  Mark my word.... I will be doing this for 2017!!!  The one downfall to shopping too early I have found, is sometimes this backfires and I end up spending more money as I continue to see more and more deals and can't resist! Which leads me to number 2.....

2.  SELF CONTROL!  If you have a giving heart and love to give gifts this can be a very difficult one this time of year.  Set a budget on what you want to spend TOTAL for Christmas gifts and then distribute that among those you give to. We don't necessarily always play the "fair" game around here.  For instance, my 3 year old will never know understand or know how much money we spend on her and her gifts are relatively inexpensive, whereas, my teenage son thinks we are printing money in the basement!!!  Don't get caught up in having to spend the same on each person or child..... let God lead your gift giving and teach your children gratefulness.  Of course as they are older and are able to recognize more who got what, we make sure there is balance but we don't stress over dollar amounts.  We have our kids make a list with their number one thing on top and we try to get as many things as financially possible on that list.  If we can't get them, we pass them on to family members.  

3. Sales/ Coupons!  There truly is never a reason to pay full price for anything this time of year!  There are sales virtually everywhere!  I get coupons in the mail for a zillion different stores and I make sure I utilize them if they apply to what I am needing to buy.  Once again, if you are able to get something cheap or free for someone though sales and coupons, that is awesome!  Don't feel like a scrooge because you didn't pay much for their gift!  Count it as a financial blessing!  There are terrific websites that have offers for next to nothing for beautiful photo type gifts!  Utilize them and praise God for it!!!

4. Put heart and meaning in your gifts!  This is probably one of the best tips as it can save you money and make your gift giving even more enjoyable!  This is a little more difficult with kiddos as they often have a list they started on December 26th the prior year, however, with other adults and family members this is a powerful way to save money and bring more joy to gift giving!  Don't just buy gifts to be buying gifts, take the time to really think and pray about what that person would like.  Sometimes God will lay a homemade gift on your heart or something you know would be meaningful to them that may cost very little.  Last year my mother in law helped me make memory pillows for each of my sisters, my mom and aunt out of one of my Poppy's old suits.  They were so precious and my family LOVED them!  That probably meant more to them than any store bought gift could!


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Here is some adorable tissue paper, wrapping paper, little gift boxes and the best smelling peppermint vanilla hand soap I got from TJ MAXX!!!!!
So... here is my list of stores that are my CURRENT thrifty, fun favorites for Christmas shopping!

1. TJ MAXX-  Oh my.... I LOVE TJ MAXX!  Let me tell you.... I really, really dislike going there with anyone who doesn't like to shop, (ahem.... my spouse!!) because I can literally spend 2 hours minimum in there looking around!!  They have EVERYTHING.... name brand or not for pretty inexpensive prices!!  They have adorable seasonal items such as; wrapping paper, pillows, hand soaps, lotions etc. I seriously love this store!  It is a VERY good thing that the closest one to me is in DesMoines, which requires me to drive over an hour if I really want to go there.  That is like my dream "Missy time."  To literally have as much time as I want to wander around TJ MAXX!  LOL  I shared a photo of some of my favorite recent finds there.  It is a great place to find odds and ends gifts for people.  GO THERE!!!  REALLY!  

2. BATH AND BODY WORKS- Now, this is a favorite for many but they truly have some of the best deals ever with coupons.  You can get items free often and I can leave there with a bag full of gifts for five people for under $50 using coupons!  Almost everyone loves bath and body stuff and they also have candles, hand sanitizers, lip gloss and other cute gifts!!!  You can give someone a bottle of their favorite lotion and a pair of comfy, fuzzy socks and that is an adorable gift almost anyone would love!!

3. OLD NAVY- Once again... they have awesome coupons and sales and if you have an Old Navy or Gap credit card you will earn amazing monetary rewards as well.  Yes, you have to be disciplined in using the card and paying it off but it is well worth having one if you are disciplined and like to save money.  You can get something for everyone there and their prices are great during sales!!  I just placed an order online and saved over $60 using my rewards and super cash!  I bought, 10 different items, including a pair of adorable boots for Audree and a pair of FREE fuzzy socks and spent under $50.  

4.  DOLLAR TREE- This to me is hands down the BEST place to buy gift bags, ribbon and gift wrapping supplies!  Every bag is a dollar, big or small and they have some adorable stuff to choose from!!!!  I refuse to pay and arm and a leg for gift wrap that gets torn through and thrown to the side!  This is my go to place for gift wrapping supplies! I also bought some gift wrap at TJ MAXX this year as they have adorable, heavy duty paper for only $2.99 a roll and heavy duty works well for us as we travel with all our gifts and they often get tossed around! Cheap paper tears too easily!

So... there you have it folks!  These are my favorite ways to save money and my favorite places to shop to do so!  I hope this helps take a little of the stress out of gift giving this year because in the end.... that is not the focus of Christmas anyway!  It is the heart behind the gift giving that is most important and if your heart is weary..... it takes the joy out of it.  Focus on God's guidance and give as He leads not as YOU feel you need to.  

I promise... it will be more meaningful for everyone!!

HAPPY SHOPPING!

Peace and Blessings
Your Friend 
Missy


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<![CDATA[5 Ways to Still LOVE Life...While Living on a Budget!]]>Fri, 21 Oct 2016 12:13:45 GMThttp://awomanredeemed.com/faithful-frenzied-finances/5-ways-to-still-love-lifewhile-living-on-a-budget
Let us all face it.... just like our own child in the candy isle of HyVee.... we all LOVE a little treat from time to time!

At least I do!  God has taught me the beauty of contentment, so I have learned to accept the times when that "treat" I am eyeing, may just not be financially possible.  This has changed my life in so many ways.  

  • It has kept us out of major debt!
  • It has given me a love for the simple things in life!
  • It has grown me in other areas such as; frugalness and homemaking skills.
  • It has given me a peace like I had never known before.
  • It has given me huge appreciation for the times I am able to purchase the BIGGER treats!

That is just to name a few! 

 There is no greater peace to be found.... than in a heart... that has found contentment.

Today, I want to share with you another update on the cash envelope system that is going far better than I could have ever imagined!  I am super excited at the outcome we are experiencing!!

I also want to share 5 ways I have you can still LOVE life while living on a budget!!!  It is very possible!  I promise!!!  Now, you would HIGHLY benefit from letting God in on this journey with you, as He is truly the One that can place that treasure of contentment in your heart. 

He is REALLY good at it too!!!!  
So join me in the video above to discover those five ways to help you love life... while watching our wallets waistline!!!

Here is a sneak peek at the five ideas....

  • DON'T Crash Diet!
  • See EVERY Penny as Spending Money!
  • Do Something  Kind of Big and Fun AT LEAST Once a Year
  • Adjust Your Taxes... if You are Bad as Saving Money!
  • Utilize Online Deals!
Here is a link to get your Birthday Freebies!
http://www.allyou.com/free-on-birthday

Find out more on my video!!!

Also... here is a GREAT deal on Halloween candy for those that live near a HyVee!!

They HyVee ad has a coupon for a bag of Mars candy bars for only $1.99.  Since this is a store coupon, you can stack it with a manufacturers coupon, so, if you go to coupons.com, there is a coupon to print for $1.00 off 2 bags of Mars candy.  

You can purchase two bags for $1.99 each, use your $1.00 off coupon and pay only $3.00 for two bags of candy!!!  

Gotta love coupon stacking!!!  Now the big challenge will be having it last until Halloween!!!! LOL

Peace and Blessings
Your Friend
Missy
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<![CDATA[Weekly Shopping Deals and Cash Envelope Results!!]]>Thu, 06 Oct 2016 22:49:33 GMThttp://awomanredeemed.com/faithful-frenzied-finances/weekly-shopping-deals-and-cash-envelope-results
It's shopping day once again!

Here are two of the best deals I found this week!

At both Dollar General and HyVee you can purchase two Herbal Essence products (shampoo or conditioner) for only .50 a piece.  Here is how....

Buy two Herbal Essence (shampoo and/or conditioner) at $2.50 a piece or 2 for $5.00 and use coupon from coupons.com for get $4 off two Herbal Essence products. There is also a digital coupon for this on the Hy Vee website you can download to your fuel saver card as well as on the Dollar General digital coupon website.  

This next deal I only found at Dollar General; Buy a 12 roll package of Charmin Basic toilet paper for $5, use $1 off one package coupon from Dollar General digital coupons and then turn into Ibotta for another .75 rebate.  End price is only $3.25 for 12 rolls!

If you are not sure what Ibotta is, it is an App you can download on your phone that allows you to receive great rebates from things you purchase at a variety of stores!  Once you hit $20, you can cash it out or choose a gift card from their list of stores!  

Our Cash Envelope Experience....

I am both happy and excited to share with you the outcome of our almost two week trial with the cash envelope system....
Peace and Blessings
Your Friend

Missy
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<![CDATA[Upcoming Cash Envelope Reveal and How to Get the Perfect Frugal Eyelashes!!]]>Wed, 05 Oct 2016 18:24:41 GMThttp://awomanredeemed.com/faithful-frenzied-finances/upcoming-cash-envelope-reveal-and-how-to-get-the-perfect-frugal-eyelashes
So I'm super excited for the great cash envelope reveal tomorrow!  Our two week trial is officially over as of tomorrow and I have very positive news to report!

Stay tuned to find out the outcome and if we plan on adopting this as our new method!  

I also have a NEW fun and frugal new beauty tip for all you ladies out there that love long, flirty eyelashes but struggle endlessly with either spider eyes, crusty globs, glued together eyelashes or struggling with just trying to find a mascara that works!

Well... if that is you... you are in LUCK!!  Most women have their favorite, can't go without make up!  Mine... is mascara!  I love long eyelashes!! I always stated I should have been an adult in the 1950's as long, flirty eyelashes were all the rage!  

I have tried a dozen or more different mascaras trying to achieve the long, lushes, no sticking or globbing spider eyes mascara!

Being the frugal woman I am, it is very hard for me to cave and but expensive mascaras, but I have even done that and was greatly disappointed that for me, my lashes didn't come out any better than with a Cover Girl mascara, but cost about $25 more.  
I'm not sure if the photo really does the eyelashes justice, however, you can vaguely see the outcome of my new cracked eyelash code!

I am sorry, but this as close up to my face as I am willing to get!!! LOL

Just recently, I think I have cracked the secret to my dream lashes!  I am going to share and hope it works for you as well!

First off, there are two tools ABSOLUTELY needed to pull this off and they are...

1. A good eyelash curler
2. A clean,dry, mascara brush
3. Time

These three items are a must!
As for the type of mascara, I use two different items; Cover Girl Full Lash Bloom (it comes in a hot pink tube and I get black) and any kind of fiber mascara I can find inexpensive.  Right now, that is a Fiber mascara I found at Rue 21 when shopping for my daughter.  I think it was only like $5 or under.  

I have personally found no need for expensive mascara!

First Step; Curl your eyelashes by placing the eyelash curler as close to the base of your lashes without pinching yourself (been there done that!) then hold down for 15-12 seconds , pumping the curler slightly a few times.  Your lashes should be visibly curled.  If not, curl some more!

Step Two:
Use your DRY mascara brush to separate your lashes.  Make sure no lashes are stuck together and all are beautifully separated!

Step Three; Apply your mascara, starting at the base of your lashes and gently jiggling the wand slowly until you reach the edge of your lashes.  IF you get lashes stuck together (SO ANNOYING!!) use your dry brush and go over your lashes until they are separated.  

Step Four; Let them set/dry for at least 5 minutes.  I usually go refill my coffee cup, make my bed, check facebook, whatever, but you need to let your lashes dry before you put on the next coat.  

Step Five; Apply another layer of mascara followed quickly by a layer of fibers, then reapply more mascara to set the fibers.  Now, the fiber mascara will generally come with a mascara on the other end, however, I have never really been pleased with the mascara that comes with the fibers, so I opt for my favorite, Cover Girl instead.  If need be, run your dry brush through your lashes again, to separate and get rid of globs!  

Step Six; Now, let this layer set and dry. I let this one set a good 15 minutes.  I know, I know, it is a bit time consuming, however, it is way worth it if your love your lashes!  Once that layer is dry, take your eyelash curler and place at the base of your lashes again, making sure you have allowed all your lashes through and none  are stuck, then press down and hold for at least 10 seconds!  

WAH LAH!!  You should have some long and lushes, perfectly curled eyelashes at this point!!!  

Now don't get frustrated if you don't nail it the first couple of times!  It takes some personal tweaking!  This took me a long time to master!

I will tell you I have found it to be more about the tools and technique I use, rather than the mascara!  $6 Cover Girl works fine for me!  And with a coupon I can get if for $3!!  

So there you have it!  

HAPPY LASHING!!!  

Peace and Blessings
Your Friend

Missy


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<![CDATA[My Favorite Sites to Save a Buck!]]>Sat, 01 Oct 2016 13:19:13 GMThttp://awomanredeemed.com/faithful-frenzied-finances/my-favorite-sites-to-save-a-buck
Yes, I am going to say it!!

The Holiday season is fast approaching and for some this causes great excitement and anticipation... for others.... not so much!

One of the major contributors to the Holiday blues if often the financial strain it puts on your wallet. I totally get it.  I get it even more now that we have four children and they all start spouting off their Christmas lists around June!! LOL  

At least my two year old will be easy to buy for.  She yells "I want that!" with every single toy commercial that comes across the screen!  

Anywho.... oh... this was my blogging companion this morning.... LOVEEEEEEEEE!!
Sol back to business!

The Christmas/ Holiday season does not have to be the financial burden it may have been for you in the past!  

Today I am going to share with you some of my favorite websites to save some dough on!! 

Another thing I have learned to do, is something many people are good about doing, which is buying a gift here and there starting a few months before Christmas, or even year round.  

The only caution I give you with this, is something I have found I have done when doing this.  If I buy too far in advance sometimes this backfires on me and I end up spending MORE money as I tend to keep finding more and more things I can't resist buying for people.  Also, I don't know about your kids, buy mine can be pretty fickle!!  

Their lists evolve over time, so I always have to be aware of last minutes changes!! 

So here goes... my favorite sites to save!!

1. Money Saving Mom-  This blog posts daily deals you can find almost anywhere, but the greatest are the one's you can find on Amazon as well as a lot of FREEBIES!  She will post great items you can get a super discounts or even free, such as photo books and photo canvases!  I have been following this site for YEARS and it has taught me so much about saving money!!   Here is the link....http://moneysavingmom.com/

2. Krazy Coupon Lad
y- This site is another AWESOME site to help provide you with the greatest steals and deals around.  She has has a mobile app that allows you to download the deals at your favorite local stores!  She is extremely thorough in giving you the exact coupons you will need to achieve the deals she posts. I was super excited as one time I acutally got a guest post, posted on her website!!  Here is the link....
http://thekrazycouponlady.com/

3. Zeni Optical- Now, I know most of us do not buy people eyeglasses for Christmas, but I had to put this site up here as it is AMAZING!  It has hundreds of stylish eyeglasses for dirt cheap prices!  You need to know your prescription as well as your pupilary distance, which you can measure on your own, it will show you how!  I own a few pair of glasses from this site and they are great quality!  I got two pairs of glasses for under $30.00!! Here is the link...http://www.zennioptical.com/?gclid=CjwKEAjwvb2_BRCb_s7Yo7_ZlHASJABz6L0jWFoQ2zf7mq_9kZPW_Xw8TlSeZSBw6ZGSXAsAPPu84RoC87jw_wcB
4. Hollar- I just found out about this website through Money Saving Mom!  It is a great site to find some hidden treasure deals.  It is hit and miss and you have to scour the site to find the deals you like, but it is very worth it!  you can get Melissa and Doug items for $1, OPI nailpolish for $3!!  They also have free shipping!  Here is the link...https://www.hollar.com/?utm_source=google_sem&utm_campaign=337618118&utm_medium=cpc&utm_content=branded&htm_tid=sem&gclid=CjwKEAjwvb2_BRCb_s7Yo7_ZlHASJABz6L0jAWmGfidwuB0o0fuRrlWFS2jLu_D1F31a8AdsDjm34xoCLSnw_wcB

5. Zulily- This site has ADORABLE stuff for very often low prices or great discounts!  It also is high quality and they have UNMATCHED customer service!  I have only had a couple of issues after ordering things from this site and they are terrific at just allowing you to keep the merchandise you were not happy with and shipping you new!!  I highly recommend Zulily!  The only downfall is their shipping can be very slow.  If you are ordering well ahead of time you should be fine but if you want something quickly, you need to order from their "ready to ship" section.  Those items will ship quickly in comparison to other sections. Here is the link..http://www.zulily.com/?tid=18471620_116436985866_c&pcrid=116436985866&pkw=zulily&pmt=e&pdv=c&mkwid=s7KaaSgxe&slid=&gclid=CjwKEAjwvb2_BRCb_s7Yo7_ZlHASJABz6L0jKHhMgNpq-stfst3QGpbTW-FXtH7wirpV3iSXxQVbLBoCRnfw_wcB

6. TopCashBack- I just found out about this gem!!  I got 800 baby wipes FREE from WalMart the other day using this site!  You can receive cash back for shopping at almost any store you choose to shop at online!  They put the money right back into your set up account and you can then transfer it over to pay pal or to your bank account.  I just got a $13.47 rebate from buying the WalMart wipes!  If you do a lot of online shopping, you don't want to miss out on this site! Here is the link..https://www.topcashback.com/home

These are just a few of my favorites!  As the season approaches I will continue to share any new treasures I find!!!!

HAPPY SHOPPING!

Peace and Blessings
Your Friend

Missy
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<![CDATA[Our Trial Run with the Cash Envelope System....]]>Wed, 28 Sep 2016 20:53:36 GMThttp://awomanredeemed.com/faithful-frenzied-finances/our-trial-run-with-the-cash-envelope-systemSo... for years I have been hearing about the "cash envelope" system.  Dave Ramsey is a huge advocate and teacher of the envelope only system and Money Saving Mom, which is one of my favorite bloggers, is also an advocate.

 I have contemplated giving it a whirl on many occasions but basically convinced myself it really wasn't worth the hassle.  Even though I have a grocery budget I really try to stick to, I also hated the thought of walking in the doors to the grocery store with a literal limited amount of money to spend.  HOWEVER, I also could see the value in knowing this what I will spend and that's that. It does not leave near as much wiggle worm for "hornswaggle" items!

I don't know about you all, but I am notorious for sitting down with my checkbook to write down debits and have my stomach sink, wondering where in the SAM heck the money went.  It is really sad and frustrating how much all those little debits add up to a big fat NEGATIVE in your checkbook.  

The envelope system is a sure fire way to know exactly where your money is going and how much is going there! I really want to boss my money around and tell it where to go, rather than it bossing me!!

I recently stopped working my part time job, so as we are readjusting our budget, I thought this would be the perfect time to try and instill the cash envelope system!!  I got my husband 100% on board and away we flew!  Here is a video clip on how we are going about implementing this system......

Stay tuned for an upcoming review on our progress and the outcome of our trial run!

Peace and Blessings
Your Friend


Missy


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<![CDATA[Dollar General Deals!]]>Sat, 24 Sep 2016 15:21:34 GMThttp://awomanredeemed.com/faithful-frenzied-finances/dollar-general-deals
Dollar General has some great deals today!  If you use their digital coupons, there are a ton of things on sale, that will also match up with a coupon and give you a terrific savings!  AND... they have a section of select summer and spring items that are buy one get two free!  You want to make sure you watch at the checkout that you are given the buy one get two!!  

So.... Here is what I got for around $23.00!!!!

-2 bags of Malt-O-Meal cereal (on sale for $3 a bag with a 1$ off 2 digital coupon)

-2 boxes of Fruity Pebbles (on sale for $1.95 with a $1 off 2 digital coupon)

-2 2 Liters of Fanta soda (buy one get one)

-1 box of Doggie Bones!!

-1 container of Ever Pet cat litter

-1 box of McDonalds Cafe 12 pack K cups
(on sale for $5.00)

-1 6 Big roll Charmin Basic toilet paper
(on sale for $3.50 with $1.00 off digital coupon)

-1 roll of dry erase wall stick paper
(this was part of buy 1 get 2 free)



-2 rolls of chalkboard duct tape (part of buy 1 get 2 free)
-2 3 sipper water bottles (for a special 2 year old)

-1 bag of cotton balls

-2 cute plastic red food baskets

I also used the get $5.00 off when you spend 

Not bad for $23.00!!!!!  

Run over to Dollar General and get your deals!!!


Peace and Blessings
Your Friend

Missy

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