Money Saving Tip

It is something every household uses...something you don't want to run out ongoing expense... How can we save money? Unit price is something that many stores now show on their shelf labels, however it may not be the most accurate 'measure' of savings. I recently read on a blog I have visited on occasion a real way to calculate the savings - and for those of us that have a million things going on in our minds at one time, a simple way to calculate it. This was helpful to me especially.

What is this item? TOILET PAPER. I know that I have always be conscious of the 'unit price' when trying to make the best money saving purchases - however, the unit price (at least in this case) does not take total measurement into consideration and is usually based on the per roll amount.

How many times have you been in a store and seen this "SALE" sign with toilet paper on the display? How do you really know if the sale is a true savings to your pocket book?

An easy explanation of this was to first compare the square footage in the total package with the price for the package. For example, the total square footage of "X" brand may be 2091 sq. ft. Now a good price is one cent per sq. ft. (single ply, double ply...doesn't matter - in the end you will use about the same amount from the roll). Based on that base price per sq. ft. you can quickly figure the amount of the package using the following equation: one cent per sq. ft. times the total number of sq. ft. in the package...simply move the decimal point two places to the left...same as multiplying by .01. So, to figure out whether the shelf price is a "good" price in this case, the shelf price should not be more than $20.91.

If the shelf price is $ have scored a huge savings! Most recently on our shopping trip, I applied this method and found it to be most cases, the shelf price is actually MORE than the formula of .01 cent per sq. ft. With money be tighter in this economy and since we "literally" flush this product down the toilet, wouldn't you like to save as much as you can? I know that the $4+ dollars I saved per package on our recent shopping trip, was easily applied to other items needed. Another note to keep in mind is that TOILET PAPER doesn't have a 'shelf life' SO STOCK UP when you find a great deal!

Thanks to Diane in Utah for this savings tip!

"If a person gets his attitude toward money straight, it will help straighten out almost every other area in his life!" ~ Billy Graham

May Travels - Part II

The sound of rushing water

The clean moist mountain air

Wildlife and new adventures

This year we ventured to Sliding Rock - we took the longer way on the Parkway (about 2 hours) to explore and experience this part of the Carolina mountains. Along the way we saw the beauty of various shades of green, trickling and rushing streams and falls and bursting pinks and whites of the Mountain Laurel. There were many pull offs along the way (although we didn't excited to get to our destination) which we slowed down to view - beautiful ridge lines and valleys, rocky cliffs and thick forest. The kids were thrilled each time we drove through a tunnel..."Dad, honk so we can hear the echo!" 'Grammar' consistently repeated, "another tunnel comin'".

Once at Sliding Rock, we had our car picnic and quickly exited to see what this 'rock' held. A few tested the water...crispy COLD and were a little resistant to venture any further...however, we did not travel 2 hours to NOT go down that 60 foot rock slide. :-) Mark went first and then took Alyssa down with him the next few times. I reaffirmed several times to "hold her tight"! The next brave one was Austin, although there was a long time of examination. Logan paced up and down the slide walk area, ventured out onto the rock slide then back in again, each time working up courage to go down. Alas, he went out away from the railing, sat down and that's all it took - no turning, fun, fun all the way down. Zach was our last adventurer - overcoming the frigid water and THOROUGHLY mapping out where he would depart from as to avoid several bumps along the way. :-) 'Grammar' asked MANY times to go, but mom erred on the side of caution - declining his many requests. He settled for knee deep areas which eased my mind. :-) Before leaving the park, we saw a 4 foot rattlesnake that had been captured by the rangers to relocate somewhere less people populated.

Our journey out of the park allowed us to see a wonder of God's handiwork...Looking Glass Falls. "From your lofty abode you water the mountains; the earth is satisfied with the fruit of your work." Psalm 104: 13 To see the work of the Lord - that he made the mountains rise and the valleys sink down...added to our ability to enjoy this beautiful sight.

We also enjoyed a few days of rest and refreshment - playing board games, reading, taking in the scenery and aromas - around the house and in the community we stayed in. There was time for swimming in the lake and visiting the community's waterfalls, and trails. The boys worked with Mark on the property a few times, remarking surveyor stakes, cleaning out the stream and made paths to allow easier (and safer) walking. A few discoveries made along the way - crayfish, salamanders and lots of insects! One afternoon when Mark took the older kids to the falls, they stopped for a fun picture. There is this rock overhang and they thought they'd be silly 'holding up the rock'. Cute...

Another jaunts we took included a visit to the Western North Carolina Nature Center. The day we visited they had special guest speakers that did a presentation on shearing Alpacas - in the camel family. The kids all had an opportunity to feel the fur, take home a sample and see the various items that are made from Alpaca fur. We saw the native wildlife and plants. It was an afternoon of educational fun...

May Travels

May was a full month for our family with many exciting learning adventures...

We traveled back in time to tour the Nina and Santa Maria - two of the three Christopher Columbus ships (replicas) - with some fellow homeschoolers. The day was unusually warm...more like HOT, but it really gave us perspective on conditions that the crew must have encountered on their journey across the Atlantic.

May marked the close to orchestra for our second oldest son - a terrific first year of learning cello and playing in several concerts during the season. So many lovely pieces learned from classical to some more modern selections. The Youth Orchestra program has been a blessed addition to our learning and one in which he can use the skills learned for 'praising the Lord' in the years to come.

"Praise him with trumpet sound; praise him with lute and harp! Praise him with tambourine and dance; praise him with strings and pipe! Praise him with sounding cymbals; praise him with loud clashing cymbals! Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!" Psalm 150:3-6

The morning after concert, we arose VERY early to head out on a two week journey through TN, KY, and NC. The van packed ever so carefully - the two littlest ones, loaded right from their beds to car seats and off (in the rain) our family of 8 1/2 went. The excitement of all the plans our two weeks would hold could be sensed in the fullness of the van...friends to see, the wondrous hand of God's handiwork to be seen and so many places to visit! We managed to "squeeze" our 10 hour trip into 12 1/2 hours. :-)

Our first stay was in the beautiful mountains of TN. Cades Cove was a splendid highlight of our short stay there. The tranquility of the cove, the many black bear we saw and deer that so peacefully wandered throughout and the historic buildings that we toured have always been a joy to experience...just to let our minds wander back to days gone by when times were simple, work was hard and the days were far from frivolous...our not so long ago ancestors who lived and worked in those very mountains. How dependant on the Lord previous generations fewer the distractions away from Him were...

A couple days in TN was enough time to visit some of our favorite places and then we were off to KY. Friends, the Creation Museum and new activities to experience. Although, I was suffering by the end of the week with a severe sinus infection, the Lord was merciful to be an ever-present strength to press on and the Provider of my needs...daily reminders of His faithfulness, mercy and goodness through the encouraging times of fellowship with friends and filling my need for treatment - antibiotics called in by a doctor friend of the answer to prayer.

The Creation Museum was such a blessing and visual of Biblical truth...a walk through Genesis! The grounds are beautiful, with water features and lovely garden walkways. The petting zoo was a hit with the children! Another day the boys took in the Air Force Museum in Dayton with the men and then Mark and the boys enjoyed another outing to a Cincinnati Reds exciting and even more exciting was the fact they took home a foul ball! Worship was spent with friends at Bible Chapel of Delhi Hills - the Word was preached, worship was God glorifying and Memorial Day was honored. I will try to add a slide show of pictures on the blog for this portion of our trip.

That covers our first week...a short version of week full of blessings, refreshment and the gifts of the Lord. Part II will be up and coming about our time in NC.