My Realistic Expectations for February

February was a good month… Other than “failing” at my original focus and monthly challenge.  But, I also did a bit of soul searching and adjusting of my expectations of myself.

I used to read this blog called “A Slob Comes Clean” and one thing that she always expressed was that when things started getting crazy around the house, she would return to the basics (or survival mode, as she puts it), the one thing that was the key to keeping things from tumbling down in to the depth of clutter and mess for her was to run her dishwasher every night.  And that idea stuck with me since then.

Partway through February, when I missed a few blog posts and was feeling overwhelmed, I decided I should enact my own type of survival mode.  I decided to not attempt to create any new habits or take on any new projects, but just try my best to keep up with the ones that I was already struggling with, or even let go of some of them until I felt better in control.

So, what did my survival mode look like?  What did I do? Continue reading


Merry Christmas!

I know this is off my “regular” schedule, but I wanted to wish everyone a very merry Christmas!

Bentley wishes you a very Merry Christmas!


Happy Holidays!


P.S. If you are bored of your family and need a quick break, you should go fill out the survey that Maggie over at Northern Expenditures is working on.  Not sure what the final product will be, but she’s given us (the readership on the interweb) a challenge to get 500 participants by the time she gets back on January 9th.  Want to help out?  I did the survey and it was really quick!  Go here: Money Moose Survey


Bentley is 6 Months!

I had planned to have a meaningful and informative post for you today, but my busy weekend was made even busier by Bentley (my puppy, if you remember when we got him).

Baby Bentley – the first day we had him.

First he ate the Christmas lights off our Christmas tree on Friday (the built in kind), but luckily it seems that he just chewed them to pieces and didn’t actually ingest too much. And he left them on the tree, so I didn’t realize they were chewed until I tried to turn them on… But that made it so that I had to troubleshoot the non-functioning lights for quite a while before realizing that they were too far gone and I just had to take the lights off and replace them with a new string of traditional lights (luckily we had a few extra strands leftover from our wedding).

I thought that would be the end of it… Continue reading

Hello, My Name is…

I started this blog about a year and a half ago as an anonymous blog.  I purposely had things left vague… and didn’t really disclose too much about myself…

But that’s all about to change.  Okay, not totally, but I’ve decided it is time for me to at least have a name (I’m sick of being an acronym – ARBM).  And since I’m lazy, and don’t want to come up with a nickname for myself, or try to learn a new name, I decided that I would just use my own name.  That’s right, I am becoming slightly less anonymous!

So, without further ado… Continue reading

And… We Have a Puppy!

So, last week I hinted that I had a bit of an announcement to make on the blog this week that we had spent a fair chunk of money on… and the surprise is:

We got a puppy!

On Friday last week, my husband, his daughter and I piled all in to the car and took a day trip to the breeder to pick up our baby Bernese Mountain Dog.  Needless to say, we were all very, very excited to pick him up, and the process of getting him home was actually pretty smooth.  I was worried he’d pee all over the car, but we made a couple stops and were able to walk him around enough that we escaped that potential mess.

So, without any further ado, here is Bentley (aka Little Big Dog):


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Fur-Babies & Their Expenses…

Des over at halfbanked has done quite a few posts about the costs of pets.  A while back, she posted about saving up an emergency fund for her dog (vs getting pet insurance), and at the time I thought, “yeah, I should probably have a pet emergency fund…” but I didn’t do anything about it…

We have two fur babies, also known as cats, that, on here, I’ve named “Big Cat” and “Little Cat”.  They are generally pretty healthy, and only have had to get bailed out of kitty jail a few times… but Big Cat is getting a bit older, and so my thought was that we should probably prepare for a few health issues coming up…


Big Cat: “I am so not impressed by all the picture taking…”

We have also been talking about getting a dog, so we made one of our savings goals a “dog fund” thinking that dogs are a bit more expensive than cats, so we should have a bit of a safety fund for taking care of the dog.  I had that at $1000.  And now I laugh at how small that amount is…

In January, Big Cat went to the vet for his annual check-up, and it was found that he had some issues with his teeth, that if left unresolved could cause him a lot of pain and issues… and they may already have been causing him pain… he had been especially cranky with Little Cat in the last while… Maybe because he had a constant toothache… (She can be a bit of a brat to him… but still…)
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Five Photos, Five Stories

Last week, Jillian from How To Be Myself did this “five photos, five stories” challenge where for five consecutive days she posted a different photo and accompanying story. Each day, she would nominate a new blogger to continue on the challenge. On day 4, she nominated me. It’s totally up to the nominee if they want to participate or not, but I think I’m going to take on the challenge because it will force me to get 5 posts done this week (even if they were posts that I was planning on doing at a later date)… So, here we go…

For day #1 of the five photos, five stories, I give you this:

Our Fish Frank
Our Fish Frank (or maybe this was Frankeska?)

Continue reading