Bluebonnets To Peaches

Banks Have It All Wrong
March 25, 2011, 5:16 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I realize it’s been awhile A REALLY LONG TIME since I’ve posted on the blog and I have no excuses except that we’ve been busy living life ūüôā

Here’s a post about my experience today in dealing with 2 different national banks, the frustration of them and how they have it completely backwards.

One of my nieces is getting married this summer on the beach in North Carolina. We are renting a house for the weekend of the wedding. I needed to send in the rental agreement on the house and a deposit. The owner requested a cashier’s check. No big deal . . . so I thought!

Our primary checking account is out-of-state; however, we have our “emergency fund” (3-6 months of our living expenses as recommended by Dave Ramsey) at a large national bank with a branch down the street from our home. Although this beach rental doesn’t qualify as an “emergency” our thought was to go in and get a cashier’s check and then reimburse the funds from our primary account.

I quickly found out that they wanted to charge me $8 for a cashier’s check. WHAT? WHY? There is plenty of money in the account to cover the small deposit and the balance does not fluctuate much since we use the account as our emergency fund. When I refused to pay the $8 fee, the banker informed me that we could “upgrade” the account and then I could receive the cashier’s check for free.

I realize that there are different advantages to different types of accounts and I don’t disagree with that; however, I don’t want to “upgrade” my account.¬† I know that the upgraded account requires you to keep a minimum balance – something I don’t want to think about.¬† If we had a true emergency then I want access to our funds without worrying about a minimum balance or being hit with enormous fees because I didn’t remember about the minimum balance agreement. ¬† All I wanted was a low dollar cashier’s check – I didn’t want to spend the next hour sitting with the banker analyzing my account and “upgrading” it.

I left that bank and went across the street to another large national bank. This is a bank that we used previously as our primary bank years ago and never actually closed our account – don’t ask me why! It has a very small balance, but enough to cover the cashier’s check I needed.

I went in and asked if I could get a cashier’s check and if there would be a charge. The banker pulled up our account and told me that yes, they do charge for a cashier’s check; however, because we have our mortgage with them also then they would waive the fee. REALLY?

Does anybody else see the irony of this? The bank that holds 3-6 months of our living expenses wanted to charge me a fee; however the bank that we are in debt to for our home is willing to waive the fee!

This infuriates me on several different levels – they have it completely backwards! The bank that holds our money should be willing to issue the cashier’s check for free, not the bank that holds our debt!


Kitchen Curtains
March 25, 2010, 3:49 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

A lady that lives nearby posted on our neighborhood facebook page stating that she was looking for someone to make some kitchen curtains and asked for referrals from anybody in the neighborhood.  I very rarely visit our neighborhood facebook page; however, hubby checks it out often!  He responded to her inquiry and much to my delight she contacted me!

She wanted something for the kitchen sink window and backdoor window.¬† She had seen several designs at Pate-Meadows designs that she liked and told me “pick whichever one you like!”¬† I just love that!

Here are the before pictures:

Here are the after pictures:

Even though I commonly see the transformation of a room when new curtains are hung, it still never ceases to amaze me on how much they change the look of a room!  Of course, the new paint is lovely too and coordinates beautifully with the fabric!

My Etsy Shop
March 1, 2010, 7:44 pm
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My Etsy shop is officially open! Please, feel free to check out my shop and let me know what you think!

I’ve been working hard sewing up wallets and matching purses and I just love the way they have turned out!

The inspiration for the wallets started when I saw this post!¬† I didn’t have a wallet to put my new envelopes in, so I made my own!¬† Soon, Kelleigh left a comment letting me know that she loved the wallet!¬† I offered to send her one as a thank you for inspiring me with her beautiful envelopes!¬† She happily accepted!¬† I soon had “orders” from several local friends that had seen the wallet and knew I had to make a matching bag!¬† Every girl needs a matching purse/wallet combo! With support from my awesome hubby, I decided to open up my own Etsy online shop!

To kick off my “Grand Opening” my friend Kelleigh over at Kelleigh Ratzlaff Designs is giving away one of my wallets!¬† Plus, if she gets 100 comments she will throw in a set of super cute envelopes to go along with the wallet!¬† Whoo Hooo!

So, head on over and enter for a chance to win!

Kroger Deals
February 8, 2010, 4:27 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I haven’t posted my grocery deals in some time, so I thought I’d show you what I got at Kroger this weekend.¬† I love it when Kroger has the $5 off Mega Event!¬† I love this sale so much that I ventured out in the cold with BOTH BOYS in tow!¬†

Total Purchased $99.31

Total Spent $59.15

Total Saved $40.16

Grocery shopping with children has always been a challenge for me.¬† I will never forget my first grocery store trip after our first son was born.¬† He was a few weeks old and I decided to venture out to the store.¬† I made sure to practice opening and closing the stroller before I left so I wouldn’t look like a complete fool!¬† After strategically planning our shopping trip around feeding time, we loaded up and headed to our local grocery store.¬† I gracefully opened my stroller and attached the car seat¬†without incident – this was going to be great!¬† I then entered the store and realized that I couldn’t push my stroller AND a grocery cart at the same time!¬† My stroller wasn’t going to hold much food. I did what any new mom would do¬†. . . I bought one loaf of bread, loaded us back in the car and drove 2 blocks to the other grocery store to do my shopping!

Fast forward 2 1/2 years when son number 2 was born.¬† Shopping didn’t get any easier.¬† I now had one in the front of the shopping cart and one in an infant carrier that I could place in the basket but then there was not¬† much room for our food.¬†¬†¬† I soon learned that I needed to do all my grocery shopping while the oldest was at preschool 2 days a week!

I now have 2 boys that no longer fit in the cart! They have to either hang onto¬†the side of the cart or walk along beside me.¬† I try to make it fun for them by giving them items to help me find and we have lots of discussions about coupons and why we use them.¬† I wonder what the next phase will bring?¬† Maybe they will be driving me to the store . . . I just can’t think about that right now!

What’s your experience shopping with children?

It’s been a long time, but I’m back!
December 11, 2009, 7:00 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

I know it’s been a LONG time since I’ve posted anything and I have a lot of excuses I could give you but my absence¬†in the blog world has been due mostly to the fact that going back to work part time after being at home with our kids for 7 years has been a big change.¬† I am enjoying my job as a preschool teacher but finding time to do all those pesky things around the house, like laundry, has meant figuring out a new routine for our family.¬† It’s been hard to find a time to fit in blogging, but I think our family has mostly adjusted now so I’m going to give blogging a chance again!

As¬†I am¬†coming to the end of¬†my first semester as a preschool teacher, I’ve realized that teachers are really not given enough credit.¬† I know that we all “say” that teachers aren’t paid enough and deserve more credit for all the work they do; however, I truly didn’t realize how much until I’ve experienced it first hand.¬† Teachers do so much more than what you see in the class or receive home in¬†your child’s¬†folder.¬† There are hours and hours and HOURS spent preparing material, researching and making schedules! Oddly enough, I really enjoy the prepping part, it allows me use my administrative skills ūüôā

I thought you might be interested to see what the hands (or in this case one hand) of a preschool teacher looks like at the end of the day – yes my hands usually look like this at the end of everyday!

One Year Anniversary
July 24, 2009, 1:25 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

One year ago today we arrived in Georgia!¬† In some ways I can’t believe it’s already been a year but yet when I remember “living” in a small hotel room for the first 8 weeks while we looked for a home it feels like that experience was forever ago!

Although I feel blessed to have had a place to stay while we looked for a home and didn’t feel rushed to buy the first house we looked at, I still have no desire to see the inside of another hotel room for quite awhile!¬† However, when you stay at one hotel for 2 months, you do acquire A LOT of hotel points to use towards free stays!

After our first year here in Georgia I’ve discovered a few things:

  • Georgia is really very pretty.¬† There are A LOT of trees. When we first arrived I was a little irritated with all the trees because I couldn’t see where anything was!¬† In Texas you can drive down the freeway and see all of the restaurants or stores and decide where you want to go and just drive towards the store.¬† In Georgia you have to know where you are going, or actually pay attention to the blue signs on the highway that tell you which exits have food!¬† Now that I’ve learned my way around I’ve also learned to enjoy the scenery and take it all in!
  • The people in Georgia are VERY friendly!¬† Within a couple weeks of moving into our new home, we had met all of our neighbors!¬† The friendliness also spills over into the way people drive here in Georgia.¬† I think that people here drive VERY fast; however, I’ve never had a problem merging into traffic, Georgians are courteous drivers. (Just for the record, Texans are also some of the friendliest people around!)
  • The climate in Georgia is really nice.¬† I know many people refer to it as “Hotlanta” but hubby and I both just laugh when people here complain of the heat! Yes it can be humid, but 85 and humid does not equal 105 degree heat! And besides it gets humid because it rains here . . . during the summer!¬† In Texas it might not rain for weeks and weeks . . . and weeks¬†during the summer!¬† This is also why there are not as many trees in North Texas!¬† I did get cold during the winter, but it gave us a good reason to use our fireplace!
  • I was shocked to discover that Georgians do not drink an abundance of sweet tea!¬† When you visit a restaurant you are offered sweet or non-sweet tea, but I always envisioned Georgians sitting on their front porches with big glasses of sweet tea.¬† The first time I hosted my book study group at our home here in Georgia I made 2 pitchers of sweet tea because I didn’t want to run out!¬† To my surprise NOBODY drank the sweet tea, everyone had just plain water!
  • Tennis is a very big deal here!¬† Most neighborhoods have tennis courts and neighborhood teams.¬†
  • Women wear bikinis to the swimming pool . . . as in women that have had children and they look good in the bikinis!¬† I’m assuming this is because they all play tennis . . . and to make myself feel better I’m also assuming that none of them had 9 pound babies ūüôā

Overall, I like it here in Georgia. It’s not Texas, but then again there is nowhere like Texas!¬† I do miss our family back home and I do miss the awesome tex-mex but I think we are adjusting fairly well to our new state!

Crazy Weather
April 16, 2009, 4:11 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

2 weeks ago we had snow flurries, last weekend we had a hail storm – crazy weather!

We knew we had some storms headed our way, but we didn’t know how severe they were until we received a call from hubby’s parents in Texas asking if we were okay.¬† I think I responded with something like “of course we’re okay, why wouldn’t we be?”¬† They then told us that they had seen the radar for North Georgia and it looked like we were getting pounded by some storms.¬† I decided that maybe I should turn on the TV and check it out!¬† Oh my goodness . . . the radar was solid red in our area and we decided we should try to pull hubby’s car into the garage.

As soon as we got the car in the garage, the hail started coming down!¬† By the time it was over, it looked like it had been snowing – there was ice everywhere!¬† Our pictures didn’t turn out great, but here’s one of our gutter off the front porch to give you an idea of what it was like!