A Little Leopard


It’s my Friday and I’m up early!  I dropped my kid off at the golf course so she could catch a ride with the coach to a tournament at 5:00 AM.  Yep, she gets the whole day off from school  and 18 holes a golf for free.  Not a bad gig if you can get it.

I got to work and I took down all the decorations, oh and guess what?  I won first prize.  $25.00 gift certificate for Macys!  I plan on putting it in my daughters stocking. 

Anyhoo… I got dressed in a hurry but I think I put together a cute outfit.

I barely ever wear leopard (I love it though).  However, when I wear it, I only like touches of it here and there.

Check out the Payless shoes I bought forever ago and this is the first time I am wearing them.


So I added  a pair of earrings and a scarf that I have had for ages and BAM… cougar!  Oh I mean leopard!


Its going to be a long day.  I have a Board Member conference to go to end of day today. 

I hope I win the door prize.  It’s a trip for two someplace local.  Wouldn’t that be great!?!

Tomorrow, I have to get my car maintained, it is over 4000 miles too late.  That is what some of my refund is going toward.  Easy come easy go.  I still cannot tell you the relief I feel of not having to figure out where to get more money for that trip!!!! 

Have a great day!


Paper Towel Stretch


Today is our company Halloween potluck.  I thought I would share pics but I didn’t have time to go and get any!  Anyway, they look much like they did last year.

Here is the pumpkin I made a couple of years ago!


Wasn’t that cute?  It was so hard to do and it didn’t even place in the contest!

The pumpkin I did this year has a company logo shirt and hat.  So obviously for anonymity  I can’t post pics of it.  But those kinds of pumpkins never win the contest, just the actually carved ones.  Makes sense… I guess.  More and more people are not carving pumpkins, just decorating so maybe its time to change it up!

Okay now onto the Towel stretch!

You are probably wondering how the heck do you stretch Paper towels? Well, first of all, buy from the 99 Cent Store!


Then make sure you buy the right kind!


You don’t have to buy from there, but they are way cheaper!  Paper towels are not cheap!


But here is MY secret!  No matter what kind you get or where you get them make sure you get the ones where you can pull off half size sheets!


I cannot tell you how much longer my paper towels last me!

I was bummed because the 99 Cent Store did not have them for the longest time, but now they do!

So there you have it, another way to stretch your buck!

Have a great day!


Spaghetti Squash Nuked


I want to share a quick way to cook spaghetti squash.  Why would you even want to cook it you ask?  Cause its carb free and its a veggie.    ;-)

Before I share the easiest way to cook squash, I wanted to show you a couple of really good finds that my kid and I found tonight.

My kid needed wanted a plaid skirt for her Halloween costume and so we went to the Goodwill to see what we could find.

She didn’t find a skirt, but look what I found!

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Not one, but six!  I already washed them and put them in the cupboard.  I usually find a couple glasses here and there but this time I found six.  Since I’m down to 3 I thought it was a smart idea to pick some up with the holidays coming.  These are really pretty right?


I was pretty happy at .99 cents a piece.  That seems to be the magic number for my budget these days.

Okay, so I got lucky but  my kid didn’t.  So we went and found this cute skirt and long socks for $20.00 at a clothing store.  Kind of a spunky nerdy girl!  I think its adorable.  She’s wearing big black framed glasses too.  Its pretty cute!


Okay, now for the squash.

Cut a spaghetti squash in half.  Be careful, not easy.


Scrape out the seeds.


Put face down in about 3/4 inch water and cover with plastic wrap.


Cook in the microwave for at least 10 minutes until fork tender.

Then bring it out and let it cool slightly.  Use a fork like you would rice and just start pulling apart.


This is pretty cool because if you are on WW its ZERO points and if you are gluten free it works AND its veggies.  This is actually kind of a perfect solution to pasta.

Can I just say right now, its not pasta.  Nothing is like pasta.  Nothing!  I HEART Pasta!

Put sauce on it and think of the positive reasons to cook it!


Try it!


Spaghetti Sauce – Quick Fast Cheap


I looked at my stretching page and I realized I have never posted this recipe.  I can’t believe it either because it is so Quick –  Fast and Cheap that you’d think it would be one of the first things on my stretcher recipe list!

I know most of you have your own recipe.  This for any of my readers that are maybe not so kitchen savvy. Like me!

If I can make it, you can make it.  If I can afford it, you can afford it.

I used ground turkey (because it was on sale) but you can use any ground meat you want.


What you don’t see in that picture is the olive oil and the garlic salt.  Again, you can use any seasoning you want.  Basil, or whatever!  The canned tomatoes (from the 99 cent store) have seasoning and sometimes that’s enough. 

(Okay, I know it is cheaper to cut onions yourself and I usually do.  No excuse)!  Winking smile

I do however have a secret ingredient that I will share in a bit.

Just put a bit of oil in the pan and brown the onion and ground meat.


Next add in the can of tomatoes.  I use all of the can and do not toss the water. Some people drain it.  Your choice.


Mix that up then add in a couple of tablespoons of tomato paste.  I had that tube on hand, but you can get it dirt cheap anywhere!


I love the zip it adds.  (That reminds me of Misery when Kathy Bates talks about adding spam to her meatloaf!)

Then add a can or jar of sauce.  (I had some left over) You can find Hunts at the 99 cent store.


Hey, how’d that butter get in there!?!  Oh well!  ;-) 

Let that simmer, then add your seasonings.  I used salt, pepper and garlic salt as well as a pinch of hot pepper flakes.


Mmm… coming together.


But there is one more thing.  I have no idea where I learned this trick but I do it every time I make this sauce.

I add this secret ingredient.


Sugar!  Just a level tablespoon.  It cuts the acidity and just gives it a nice flavor.  ZIP!

So there you have it.  You can make this whole thing from 99 Cent store ingredients and you can find Texas Toast there as well! 

Today I am having this for lunch over Spaghetti squash.  I’ll post how to cook that in the microwave soon. 

Have a great Monday!


99 Cent Store Run

Hello Sunday!  I LOVE Sunday, it’s my favorite day.  I usually laze around with a cup of coffee and catch up on blogging and planning the week. I still get up pretty early, just like to laze.  Do you do that?

Yesterday I went to the 99 Cent store as planned while my daughter was in a  golf clinic.  Saved gas, have you noticed the price of gas?  GREAT!

I got everything on my list!  Does this look like $46.00 worth of stuff?  If I would have I shopped at mainstream this would have been at least $100.00.  Two bags can be that much!


I picked up some canned goods  I use the chicken broth in rice all the time and I always add diced tomatoes to my spaghetti sauce.  I have no idea what those greens and beans are or why I picked them up.  LOL!


Notice the Oregon Trail cranberries.  Great find for November or December.  Not sure what we are doing for the holiday yet, but I hope it is not much!


I was completely out of canned cat food.  They were so happy this morning.  This is .50 a can.  A little high actually.  Should be  42 a can, but it was there!


House hold products.  The paper towels are post worthy, heads up!


Breakfast food.  Not too exciting.  There’s some pancake mix in other pic!


Halloween candy.  I probably won’t get a single ghoul, but better safe than sorry.


Misc. items.


I have some frozen Swai in the freezer and I really needed that lemon pepper!   I’m really craving salmon but not in the budget.  Next week, maybe. Hopefully.  Probably not.  Why is it so expensive?  Getting up there with halibut.

I picked up some hair ties for my daughters golf  bag as well as some lip balm.  Two must haves.


Two pumpkins.  One for me and one for my daughter.  1.99 each.  There was no way I would buy any at the pumpkin patch.  Too expensive!    I got two, but one is still in the car.  ;-)


Kiddo loves that Gatorade and since she is out in the sun for almost 5 hours while golfing, its good.


On Weds, we have the company potluck.  I am bringing pasta salad.  I picked up all the ingredients here too.


I know its a bunch of odds and ends today but I have meat in my freezer and did not need to buy much.  Thankfully.

Gah… we are already dipping into the candy!


(cat hair optional)

My kid is off to play a practice round today.  I am in for the day.  Laundry, cleaning and maybe now that I have some spray starch I can do some ironing.  Oh joy.

I need to look at the budget.  I didn’t yesterday.  Its hard to sit down and re-crunch numbers you have already looked at a million times.  They don’t change!

What are your plans today?   Whatever they are, have a wonderful, long Sunday!


PGA Junior Tour?

Hello!  Happy Weekend!

This was my post for yesterday but then I got busy on the phone to see what I could do about Cabo and I just had to post that great news instead.  I really only expected to postpone the trip again, I had no idea I was going to be able to get completely out of it.  I am still so relieved.

But nothing has changed about my plans for the weekend.  Golf clinic, 99 cent store, and my kid gets to go to the Haunted House tonight.  I will be busy trying to budget as planned.   Now I just might have a bit of an Emergency Fund to look forward too!

My big plan for the weekend is to work on my budget.


It may get even tighter round these parts.   I will explain that in a second.

NEWSFLASH :  High school girls golf season is over, the leagues have been played. (No more coach)!!!

My sophomore daughter ranked 14 out of 36!!  All five area high schools, including juniors and seniors.   Her scores are dropping and it shows.  She works so hard.

The girls team did make it to CIF finals and their first game is next Thursday.   Good luck girls!   Cheater Pants might not play, she got DQd from the league game yesterday.   Long story.

Here’s what might cause my budget to burst at the seams!   I honestly do not know how I’m going to swing it but I want my daughter to join yet another golf organization in January.


There’s a yearly membership and tourney fees as well, but I talked to a coach from another high school that has her eye on my kid and she told me she is so ready for that venue!   This coach (who coaches at the elite private school in the area) loves my kid and she wants to take her for a private course management day.  Just the two of them – for free!  My kid is beyond.  She suggested this organization to me when I asked what next?

I need to sit down, take a good long look at my budget and  see what I can squeeze out. Groceries, Cable, Phone are things I can change to find another buck.  Its pretty tight as it is, but there are times when I do buy silly things (we all know that) but if I can hunker down just for a couple more years to give her the best possible chance at Golf Scholarships, then it will be so worth it!

I will do whatever it takes to give her every opportunity in it.

Yes, even during a Chapter 13!  Crazy huh?

Thank You Hurricane Odile


Today I was writing up a post about my daughters Golf and something dawned on me.

I really don’t want to go to Cabo.  But I also know that when you buy something through Travel Zoo you can’t get a refund after 7 days and I know as well that you cannot ever get airfare refunded.  EVER!

But check this out!

Here’s what I spent:


And after all my calls today, here’s what I get back! 


I cannot believe it either.  Fully refunded travel plans.  This just does not happen!

Here’s the break down.

I called Travel Zoo just to see about the hotel.  I told them about Hurricane Odile and why we postponed but that the new dates just did not work. The agent said no worries because that resort/trip is marked as fully refundable.  I was like… WHAT?    All I had to do was call the resort, get a cancelation number and call back Travel Zoo with that.  Done.  That included the shuttle too.  Done and Done.

Then I called the easy one.  I called the ride to and from LAX.  No problem.  Refund!  Done.

Now for the airline tickets.  I figured I would call and just change them to a visit to my mom in Portland.  The agent and I  tried to find some flights that would work, but they were like $350.00 a piece more.  I told the agent, no, I can’t do that.  Heavy sigh… then she said something I never thought in a million years that I would hear… “You do have a get out of jail card for free.”  Honest, those where her exact words.

She then explained that since there was an “alert” put on those flights because of Hurricane Odile, the reservation change fee was already waived, but even better, since she could not find flights that worked for me, I could be issued a full refund.  WHAT?   Yep and she started the process for me today right then and there.

So within the next couple of weeks I will be completely reimbursed.  I am flabbergasted, shocked and amazed.

Thank you Hurricane Odile!


I am so happy right now.  This kind of thing never happens and it never happens to me!


Tomorrow I will post the golf post that was meant to be posted today.   This was just too good to wait!

Did I get out of that big mistake by the skin of my teeth or what?