Sunday, January 27, 2013

Oh My Goodness...

Holy cannoli - it's been QUITE some time since I've posted something with real content! I appreciate you all sticking along for the ride with me.

Since our move, I've just been focusing on school and getting this house put together. I have more things than I know what to do with - and more things than I do storage. It's just CRAZY!


In the next couple of weeks, I'll be loading up my TPT store with new products, writing posts about these new products and how you can use them in the classroom, sharing what my craft room (or corner) looks like as it's developed, discuss some book recommendations for various subject areas, and share some crafty ideas with you all once my table gets put up and I can have a place to work!

It's been a long journey trying to get our house to where we want it, but it's slowly, and surely, coming together!

Oh, and for holding on for SO long... I'll show you some pictures of our soon-to-be-baby boy, Tucker! :) He's a bulldog and we are SO excited to be getting him soon!

Isn't he freakin' adorable?!

And that crazy other son of ours, Socks...

Be back soon, y'all!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Hey, College Kid!

Hi y'all! I know it's literally been FOREVER since I've written. I'm struggling with my blog, while balancing everything else. This move has definitely taken a toll on my "fun" - decorating, settling in, and now I've started my second semester of grad school for my Master's program!

If you're like me, you have close to $500.00 in college textbooks each SEMESTER. I'm not kidding... that number kills me. My first quarter (I started school when we had quarters, not semesters!), I spent $750.00 in BUYING books... want to know how many times I looked at those books after I bought them? ZERO.

I am not kidding you... I didn't open the books and they just sat in my room. Why? Selling back was going to give me $15.00 ... from the $750.00 I spent. Yes, yes, I know $15.00 is better than nothing, but I wasn't going to waste my time and just gave them to incoming freshman the next year that were taking the same classes...

But, multiply those textbook costs by 3 (for the 3 quarters) and you're already at $2,250. NO, I wasn't going to do that... no way, José!

So, the next semester I began renting my textbooks. Yeah, renting! Books that would cost me hundreds upon hundreds of dollars, I began saving anywhere from 40% to 90% off the sticker price. YES, I'm not kidding... that much. It was unbelievable and I knew something was up...

Nope, nothing was up. gives students this amazing deal to rent textbooks (flexibly) instead of buying... should you need your books for another quarter - easy peasy. Just extend your rental period - for still LESS than you would pay to BUY the book.

The other perk is that, while you're not picking this book up at your local bookstore and instead, you're getting it shipped... shipping is FREE. Yes, free! BOTH WAYS. Whaaaat?! You get it shipped to you for no cost, and once you're done, shipping back is free! Cool, huh?

Oh - how many of you highlight in your books? Raise of hands - me! I have to.. it keeps me in line. Welp, with CBR, you can highlight, underline & take notes in any book - similar to what would happen if you BOUGHT the books. Only, you're not paying the same price!!

Beyond that... how many of y'all like to donate to different charities? Ever heard of Operation Smile? Well, it's a children's charity for cleft lip and cleft palate surgeries. How amazing is that?

Well, donates to Operation Smile with every single textbook rental. Now, if that's not a reason to use alone, I dunno what is!

Anyways... now that you know all about CBR, you should probably know about another program they run - Those books that you've bought and don't want to sell back for next to nothing... well, they can go to and be rented to other students - just like you! For as long as the book is in demand, YOU get paid each time someone rents your textbook you "sold" back to

Now, if you're still not sure what's up with all this and are a little uneasy about renting - why the heck should you rent versus buy?! - watch theis video below.

Now, how many of y'all are going to start renting?? I love renting and am SOOO happy I found out about the process before it was too late (and I was too in debt).

I hope that this post helps some of YOU save money in the long run. As college students, we all know about that "M" word.... or lack thereof ;)

Have a good night, y'all!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Tuesday 10 - Ten New Year Resolutions

Happy New Year!! Welcome to 2013 - this is going to be the best year by far :)

The Austin Family Diary
I'm linking up with Lauren & Tiffany for the FIRST Tuesday Topics of 2013 - starting with Ten New Year Resolutions.

1. Lose weight and STAY at that weight. I want to lose 10 pounds and tighten up around my abs and thighs!

2. Read 52 books, one for each week. I've got sooo many I want to read!

3. Graduate with my Masters program by December. I've gotta get this degree under my belt and knock it out!

4. Learn how to sew. I want to make quilts!

5. Create a total of 52 products for my TeachersPayTeachers store - one for each week.

6. Create a craft per week. I love crafting and have so many ideas... just never do them!

7. Come up with 182 meal ideas for our meal board - this will help us to NOT go out to eat and give us variety for our meals! 

8. Blog at least 3 times a week about MEANINGFUL things. Not just posts that are about nothing... maybe about some goals I have, my family, what I'm doing currently, and so forth.

9. Take care of ME. This includes taking vitamins, drinking 64 ounces of water DAILY, and just eating better. I get headaches daily, stomachaches daily, and some days, really nauseous. SO, taking better care of me is a definite.

San Antonio, Texas -  River Walk - {SOURCE}
10. Travel to at least 3 places. This year I want to take as many trips as we can... even if it's to not so far away places. We're 2 hours from New Orleans... now how cool would it be to just visit? Same with Florida. We've got the time, why not do it now!?

Welp, that's it! Those are my 10 resolutions this year. Some of them are obviously very cliché, but I WILL accomplish each goal.

Have a great year, y'all!

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