How to Save On Garden Plants



The last few years, I’ve waited a few weeks into June before purchasing any flowers to plant for the summer. One time I found annuals marked down to 80 cents for a six pack at Wal Mart. Did they look a little rough? Sure, but nothing a little pruning and water couldn’t fix. In fact, I used those same flowers in my Tin Can Planters. I also purchased a bush that I’ve had my eye on for years for $3 at Lowes in May after it had bloomed for the season.


This year, the weather has been crazy in Ohio. We were having frosts up until the last week of May. I’m always afraid to plant anything to early into the season for this reason. The second year I put in a garden, I ended up planting it twice because the first time got hit by a frost. For this reason, I waited until the second week of June to purchase any flowers {I purchased my garden plants the week before from the farmer’s market}.


A local green house has huge mark downs on all of their plants the second week of June as they shut down after the sale and won’t reopen until fall for mums. I went a few days into the sale when everything was 60% off. I had never been there before, so I was very overwhelmed by the amount of plants they offered.


I also wasn’t sure what some of the stuff I was purchasing was. I tried to read the tags to make sure the plants fit the planting criteria that I was looking for and didn’t attract bees {the husband is allergic}.


This is the back of my SUV when I left the green house. I got 41 individual plants for $31. I was surprised by the total when I checked out because I was just throwing things in my cart, not really keeping track of the prices.


I was able to get two hanging baskets that were really full for $3 each. These baskets at retail stores probably sell for $16 or more.


More views of the plants once I got home.


My total before the sale was $73.69. After the 60% off sale, I paid $31.47 with tax for all of these plants.

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I picked up the white planter on clearance at Target. I put a combination of pink flowers around the spike plant.


I love sweet potato vines. I just think their colors are so pretty. The day before I got all the plants at the nursery, I scored 5 sweet potato vines from the farmer’s market for $4. I had no clue where I was going to plant them. Then I ended up with the hanging basket and thought it would look neat to have the vines grow down the basket, so I planted one vine in each basket.


I also found these planters at Target that attach to your deck railing using either zip ties {brilliant for those living in apartments} or by screwing them into the deck. I have two of them and planted a sweet potato vine, and two other plants in them.


The big reason for purchasing all of these plants was for the new flower bed we were putting in. Last fall we had to dig up our foundation {a post on that is coming soon} in order to water proof it, so what used to be grass had become a pile of dirt. It’s always been more of a pain to mow this, plus the way we park in the driveway, I usually end up driving in this area. I thought putting in a flower bed and the putting gravel up to the landscaping bricks would be a great idea.

The majority of perennials that I purchased got planted here. I purchased the landscaping bricks on sale at Menards. After using a rebate I had, I only paid roughly $2 for them.


This is one of the flower pots sitting on the front porch.

Because I knew when flowers would be going on sale at various garden centers and retail stores, I was able to purchase enough plants and landscaping bricks to add a new flower garden for under $50.

When you’re looking to add to your landscaping, remember to watch for the sales. Most annuals and spring/early summer perennials go on sale the first week or two of June depending on your area. Also watch at retail stores, as I’ve noticed most of them have a clearance section where they mark down ones that may be able to be saved with a little sun, water and TLC.  By knowing when these sales happen each year, you will be able to save possibly hundreds of dollars on plants each year. I wish I would have known this tip the first few years we were home owners and added new landscaping.


Last Year As A Twenty-Something

My birthday was earlier this month {I can’t believe this month is almost gone}.


I got cupcakes from the local cupcake shop. I thought this Cookie Monster was adorable. IMG_2318

These are so rich and delish that we usually split them so we both can try the different flavors.


I started a thing at work this year to recognize my co-workers birthday’s by decorating their desk and hanging a ‘Happy Birthday’ banner. While I was out, they decorated my desk.

IMG_2316   The best birthday card I got was from my friends two daughters! How cute is this?

Since I had to work on my birthday, I took that Friday off work and went for a pedicure and just enjoyed the day off.

Only 11 more months of being a twenty-something.


Happy 5th Anniversary

Today marks our Fifth Anniversary. It’s hard to believe that it’s been five years already.


The last five years haven’t been easy, but we’ve got through those difficult times. Times that I think have made our marriage stronger. That have taught us lessons on caring for each other and always putting the other person first.


There have been good times and bad times. But through it all, we’ve got through it with each other. And I would have it no other way.


I look forward to seeing what the next 50 years bring.

“Sealing our love with a kiss…Waited my whole life for this…Watching all my dreams come true…Lost in this moment with you…”- Lost in this Moment by Big & Rich {Our First Dance Song}.

We celebrated my birthday and our anniversary last weekend with a trip to the zoo and dinner at Texas RoadHouse. This weekend is a race weekend for the hubby, so I’m headed to the track this afternoon for some racing and camping with him.


Chicago {Part Three}- Navy Pier


Our last full day in Chicago, we headed downtown to check out the sites. We ended up only going to Navy Pier due to a lot of the side streets being closed for a marathon.


I got a lot of great pictures but am choosing only to share these pictures so that this post, isn’t picture heavy. My mom and I both love lighthouses and we were able to see this one from the end of the pier.


My mom was driving the hubby crazy with wanting to take pictures of us. He doesn’t like having his picture taken, while I love having these memories to look back on in the years to come. 


These seagulls were everywhere and would just stand there posing, waiting for us to take their pictures. It was to funny.



I was trying to make the hubby do funny poses in these pictures.



I was super excited when we got to the end of the pier and and found this big anchor. I have an obsession with anchors these days. As I was taking a picture of it, a few couples came up to take their pictures sitting on it and I ended up being a “professional” photographer for a moment; as I think I took pictures for probably three different couples. I like to be that nice person who offers to take a picture for random strangers so that everyone can be in the picture.


This was the building at the end of the pier. This picture is straight out of my camera, with no editing or special settings when I took the picture! I can’t believe how it came out! And there’s something shooting through the sky in the top left of the picture. Love it!


We had so much fun while we were in Chicago! Thank you to my aunt who played tour guide for us! We can’t wait to get back more often, now that Southwest flies out of our local regional airport for super cheap.


Chicago {Part Two}

  Day two of our trip to Chicago was spent with family. We headed to Joliet to the casino. There’s a reason why I don’t gamble… because I don’t win anything. I should of stopped when I was up $20 in the first five minutes we were there, but what fun would that have been. The hubby had a great time as he had never been to a casino before.


The casino trip was an excuse to get my uncle {my mom’s brother} out of the house for the day. He turned 65 at the end of April, but my aunt had a party for him early since my mom and I were in town. He was definitely surprised when he walked in the door.


Happy 65th Birthday Uncle Gene. Glad we were able to celebrate with you.

DSCN6688  My Mom & her brotherDSCN6690

My mom and her sister-in-law started out as best friends when my mom was 18 years old. Eventually my mom introduced her friend to her brother and they ended up became sister-in-laws.


My mom and I. I hadn’t seen my mom in almost two years. Life gets hectic and lets face it, it’s not much fun visiting Iowa. It was great to be able to spend a few days with her and other members of our family. It was also a special occasion because I wore a dress! I don’t think I’ve worn a dress since my wedding day almost FIVE years ago! But I loved this dress! And now that I think about it, I’m gonna wear it to a birthday party next weekend.

ChicagoAmDawnMy Cousin Dawn & I {if she see’s this she’s going to kill me!}. When I was in college I would drive the six hours to Chicago every few months just to get a way for a weekend and also to get my hair done. She’s one of the few I’ve allowed to touch my hair in my lifetime. I miss her dearly and wish were able to spend more time together like we did when I was in college. I also blame her for my addiction to McDonalds Coke. When she was pregnant she craved Coke from McDonalds so when I was with her, we always had to stop by Mickey Dee’s for Coke. And now I constantly crave their Coke over any other fountain drink.              

It turned out to be a great day and we enjoyed spending time with our family. That’s the one thing that I don’t like about living so far away, is not getting to spend time with my mom as much as I would like. Thankfully we talk almost every day.


Happy Mother’s Day



Happy Mother’s Day to the best mother I could have ever asked for. She has been through a lot in her lifetime that has made her a stronger person. No matter what, she has always been there for me through the good times and the bad. She supported my decision to move 700 miles away from home. She allowed me to spread my wings and fly. I love and miss you dearly mom! I wish we were able to see each other more often.


Happy Mother’s Day to the best Grandma ever, who has always been more of a second mom than grandmother. She helped raise me and helped shape me into the person I am today! Thanks to Grandma, I’m the frugal, crafty, creative, baker/cook that I am. Grandma taught me my love of baking and hosting big family holiday dinners. She taught me how to be a good thrifter and allowed me to tag along to the thrift stores and auctions as a young girl. She taught me the value of a dollar and the importance of being frugal. Love you so so much and miss you dearly Grandma.

And thank you God for blessing me with the best Mother-in-Law, that I could have asked for! She’s not only my MIL, but a best friend, who listens to me, who supports me and who shares the same passion for cooking, planning and being frugal that I do. Who doesn’t mind my late night phone calls to get advice on various topics. And who has spent 30 plus years working as a nurse. One day we’ll be relaxing at the beach together ;o) Love you!


God truly blessed me with some great mothers! And I know that one day I’ll be just as good as a mother because of their influences. Happy Mother’s Day to all of the mother’s out there, to the mother’s of four legged fur babies and to the future mother’s who are struggling with infertility.

{Photos curtsey of CoreyAnn Photography.}


{PS} If you live in Northeast Ohio and are looking for a great photograph CoreyAnn Photography is amaze balls!

Chances Change Lives

“If life gives you a chance, take it; If it changes your life, let it.”- Harvey MacKay

This was a quote that my roommate my freshman year of college had posted in our dorm room and I grew to love it. It’s been one of my favorite quotes of all time and I’ve used it many times to get myself through various situations over the years.

If you could believe it, I was very shy and quiet in high school and growing up. I was always involved in activities and worked throughout high school, but I was always afraid to speak up or to be called on in class. It even took me a long time to get comfortable around my friends. So it came as a little bit of a shock to those closest to me when I decided I was going to move 700 miles away from my hometown in Iowa to attend a private college in Ohio; where, I knew absolutely no one! IMG_2131

I took a chance when I made the decision to move far away from my comfort zone, to a state where I knew no one. I had no idea what to expect when I stepped foot on the college campus, situated in the center of a quant little town; where Amish buggies trotting through the street dividing up the campus, were an everyday occurrence. Some days I wondered what I got myself in too. Other days I was so thankful that I took the chance to see what else the world had to offer outside of the small farming town I grew up in. IMG_2129

A chance that changed my life. A chance that allowed me to come out of my shell, to open up and figure out who I was as a person. A chance that allowed me to meet my best friends. Friends who have embraced me with open arms, making me feel like I’m a part of their family when I had no family around me. A chance that lead me to my husband.


A chance that changed my life. A chance that I am so thankful for, as I couldn’t imagine my life any other way. IMG_2132That chance that changed my life, specifically changed my life when I graduated college seven years ago today. I wonder where the last seven years have gone. There have been ups and downs, career changes, moving from renting an apartment to owning a home, dating turned to marriage, the loss of loved ones, struggles with infertility, but through it all, it’s that one chance that I took almost eleven years ago that changed my life forever!

I’ve spent the last seven years continuing to work in the same quant little town, with the Amish buggies still trotting down the streets. I’m lucky that I still get to enjoy the beauty of the campus every day while passing through. One day last week, I was able to go down memory lane when I went for a walk through the campus, enjoying the beautiful tulips that were in bloom. Spring time was always my favorite time of year during college. I was able to capture these gorgeous pictures while strolling through campus.


That same day, I came across this field of dandelions, that I just thought were beautiful. This field reminded me that beauty is all around us.


Chicago {Part One} Stalking Chicago Fire

Welcome to all of my new readers from the UBP13. I’m still working on replying to all of the comments and visiting everyone’s blogs & FB pages. I’ve been a little busy this past week.

You see, I’ve been busy stalking the TV shower Chicago Fire. Last weekend, the hubby & I flew to Chicago to spend some time with my mom, who we hadn’t seen in almost two years. She drove the six hours from Iowa and met us in Chicago where she was born & raised. After finding a sweet deal on airfare, we decided to fly in order to give us more time there.

Our flight out was delayed due to a “fuel leak that was no big deal” according to the airline when they made the announcement of the delay. We all busted out in laughter, thinking, you’ve got to be kidding us, “No big deal, huh?” Even with the delay, we still made the 45 minute flight into Chicago by 10am on Friday. My Aunt {who my mom has been best friends with for over 35 years} and my mom picked us up from the airport and drove downtown Chicago. The hubby has never actually been into Chicago so this was a fun trip for him to see new things.

But our main mission of the day was to stalk the set of the TV show, Chicago Fire. In the weeks leading up to the trip, we thought it would be cool to go see if they were filming. After searching Google, I found a site that tells you where shows and movies are filming at each day. My wonderful Aunt is such a great tour guide around the city and took us right to where they were suppose to be filming. But it looked like we had missed it.


As we turned the corner to go back around the block to another spot we had a lead on, we found the casts trailers lined up along a block by an empty warehouse. There were security guards stationed at each entrance. Of course my aunt had to drive around the block a few times & the hubby thought we were going to get arrested for stalking lol!



While we were driving around, we passed an actual Chicago Firehouse that was making a run. You see, my hubby used to be a fire fighter until knee problems caused him to have to leave the department. So we have a slight obsession with Fire Fighting stuff.

Our next brilliant idea in our stalking adventures was to find the tavern that three of the characters had purchased in the show.


The real name of the tavern is “Lotties” where as on the show, it’s named “Molly’s”. Lotties was situated in a residential area.

Then we figured out the address of the Firehouse and set off to find it. Which turns out is right near my aunt’s doctors office. I’m pretty sure she will be doing some of her own stalking when she’s downtown.  ;o)


When we pulled up, two of the SUV’s {usually what the Chief’s drive} were parked outside. We stopped to take a picture. My mom wanted to take a picture of me in front of the station, which looked horrible thanks to Chicago living up to its nickname of the Windy City. By the time we drove back around the SUV’s were gone.


Looking to the east of the department is this beautiful skyline view that is sometimes seen in episodes. As we were leaving the station, a couple had pulled up and informed us that they were going to be filming at the station on Monday at 4am to 10am. We were super excited and were planning on going {OMG how cool would that have been?!} But after thinking about it, our flight left to go home on Monday and we didn’t want to be rushed with getting packed and to the airport and so tired when we got home that evening.


The next stop on our mini Chicago vacation? None other than my favorite place for Beef Sandwiches up the street from my aunt & uncles. The hubby was being rebellious and ordered something else on the menu. I could have ate three or four of these while we were there, but I refrained from my friend Jaclyn yelling at me when I got back for killing my diet.

After resting for a bit, us girls went shopping. Where else do you go shopping while your in Chicago? Kohl’s & Target of course! LOL. My aunt had told us about some recent purse thefts in the downtown area and since we were headed to the Pier on Sunday I decided to get a cross body purse for safety reasons. ;o)

Stay tuned for Part Two: Family Time & A Surprise 65th Birthday Party.