Celebrating the Holy Days on a Budget

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“Creating the best memories requires no money.”

~ Charlie Lee Austin

 

It is that beautiful time of year again when we celebrate Advent, the time we prepare our hearts and minds for the birth of Jesus.

Raising a family of 6 on a budget, I understand the stress that Christmas can create, a time when we feel the need to overdo everything, gifts, parties, meals, decorations…….but all of this costs money and can distract from the real reason of the season.

I have written a book that lists many of the ways my family has celebrated the hoidays while living on a tight budget –  Frugal Seeds 101 Ways to Celebrate the Holiday Season on a Budget.  It can be read FREE with KindleUnlimited and is available on Amazon in e-book and  paperback.

I would be humbled if you would take a moment to check it out, thank you.

 

~ Wishing all of you a very blessed Advent Season.

 

nativity scene table decor

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living our best life – in the kitchen

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As we are spending a little more time in the kitchen or thinking of holiday foods that we enjoy, I decided to write about the object in my kitchen that make my life easier.

I have to admit that I do not find much enjoyment from cooking.  I am thankful that on my good days I am able to feed my family healthy, mostly well balanced meals, but the smells and bending over and reaching makes me feel worse.  Even though I keep all of my frequently used items on the counters, I still feel poorly after preparing food.

To help me get through the whole, preparing a meal ordeal, I daily use my favorite kitchen appliance, putting it to good use.  It is my combination DVD/CD/radio that hangs under a kitchen cabinet next to the sink.  I received this from my parents who were getting rid of it and it has been one of my favorite gifts ever!

I turn it on every single time I am in the kitchen for more than a couple minutes.  I usually have a DVD playing as it does a wonderful job distracting me from pain and discomfort allowing me to stay in the kitchen longer.  Today there is a stack of my favorite Christmas DVDs waiting to be watched over the next month.

So, what about you?  What is your favorite kitchen appliance and how does it make your life easier?  

Thank you for taking the time to share!

 

Thankful for each of You!

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I wanted to take a moment today to thank each of you who bless me with your presence here on simplychronicallyill.

Every one of you have enriched my life with your kindness, comments, knowledge and encouragement and I am thankful for every visit.

Wishing all you a day of peace, love, laughter, smiles and kindness.

 

Celebrating the True Meaning of Christmas on a budget

close up of christmas decoration hanging on tree

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The Holidays, even if you budget for them, have a way of putting a strain on your wallet.  While my kids were younger,  I worked very hard to make sure they didn’t notice our limited budget by keeping Christmas a fun and active time while remaining focused on the true meaning of this holy season.

In my latest book, Frugal Seeds Christmas Edition: 101 Ways to Celebrate the Holidays on a Budget, I share many of the ways we celebrated the Christmas season while keeping our focus on the reason for the season.

I would be greatly humbled if you would take a moment to check it out.  It is now available on Amazon in paperback and e-book and can be read FREE on KindleUnlimited.  Thank you.

FrugalSeedsChristmasCover

 

“I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all year.”

Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

covered failings

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I was out with my entire family, something that rarely happens due to lack of funds and/ or my kids’ busy work, school and activity schedules.

During this rare treasured outing, my husband and I had purchased all of the kids a snack and they were sitting together on a bench eating, smiling, getting along and thanking us for the food.

In that moment, I became completely overwhelmed by what was playing out before me – happy, smiling, joking, loving, grateful, thankful kids.  Tears welled up in my eyes and I had a very hard time keeping myself from breaking down into uncontrolable sobs.  My son looked up at me and said, “mom, please don’t cry”  which made holding back the tears an even bigger challenge.

In the past, many of my tears were more about the guilt I have held onto for so long, raising kids while my illness took a front seat.  Having children before I knew I had these congenital illnesses, and the true horror of discovering that you have passed these nightmares onto the ones you love more than life itself.

But this is not what I was feeling in that moment.  Instead, I was caught up in pure love for my children, the extreme gratitude that God had blessed me with each one of them and felt me worthy of giving me such beautiful humans to care for.  God believed that I was worthy of being their mother, a gift I humbly treasure every – single – day.

Not only has God seen me worthy of such enormous blessings as my children, but that He has also covered over my failings, filled in the numerous cracks that I left as a ill and flawed human being.  He did what I had prayed and prayed that He would do, to make up for my many shortcomings as a parent, and despite my illnesses, allow my kids to grow up to be loving, caring, compassionate and unique individuals.  Prayers answered………and because of these gifts, my heart was too full with awe.  The happiness that flowed through my veins could not be contained within my body but instead flowed over and out my eyes………

They say that the window to one’s soul is through the eyes……….I hope my children could see that the tears were from the love overflowing in my heart for each one of them.

 

~ wendi is the author of two books that you can view here.

 

Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. 

rays

bright daylight environment forest

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sitting quietly among the trees

allow the sun to brighten your spirit

soaking in the power of divine presence

the rays seeping deep into your soul

internalize this moment for cloudy days

adding it to your reserves

so when the sun disappears and the storms rage on

you can recreate in your mind the feeling of better days to come

 

Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. 

 

~ wendi, under the pen name Charlie Lee Austin, is the author of Frugal Seeds  501 Ways to Make, Save or Stretch a Dollar

past

 

grayscale photography of a pathway

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without my past

the future could not look so bright

 

without darkness

the light would not be so celebrated

 

Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. 

 

~ wendi, under the pen name Charlie,  is the author of Frugal Seeds: 501 Ways to Make, Save or Stretch a Dollar.

 

 

 

 

frugal seeds

 

 

person holding a green plant

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The title of my blog gives away the fact that I live with at least one chronic illness.  Now, I don’t want to brag, but I actually live with several, and as interesting as it sounds, it is not a whole lot of fun.  Unfortunately I am not the only one in my family who lives with such a burden.  Every person in my immediate family lives with at least one chronic illness.

As a result of all of our medical bills, we have learned to live on a tight budget.  Over the years I have had to learn to be frugal and about 6 months ago I decided to put some of  my frugal ways into a book,  Frugal Seeds: 501 Ways to Make, Save or Stretch a Dollar.  It is now available in both paperback and e-book on Amazon.  The entire book can be read for FREE with an Amazon Kindle Unlimited membership.

You will notice it is written under a pen name.  This has been done as I working on additional books and I am determined to keep the lives of my children private.  Thank you for understanding.

 

 

the quiet

 

 

black and white cold fog forest

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when we quiet our world

only then can we can hear God whisper…..

when we quiet our mind

only then can our soul speak and be heard

nature speaks to us in so many ways…..

….but only when we are humble enough to receive it.

 

Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. 

 

~ wendi, under the pen name Charlie, is the author of Frugal Seeds: 501 Ways to Make, Save, or Stretch a Dollar

music

black turntable

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Music

Understands (the)

Soul

Instinctively  (and)

Courageously

 

…….choose the music that will heal your soul.

 

Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. 

balance business cobblestone conceptual

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~ wendi, under the pen name Charlie, is the author of Frugal Seeds: 501 Ways to Save, Make or Stretch a Dollar