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Merry Christmas (a little belated!) and my blogging plans for 2013…

My three precious children — one of my favorite photos from our Christmas photo card shoot.

Merry Christmas — a little belated! 🙂 I hope you and your family are having a blessed and refreshing week of celebrating.

I enjoyed a lot of unplugged time over the last week, but I’m anxious to get back to regular blogging here. It was great to be offline but I’ve missed you all!

Those of you who are observant might have also noticed that I took a “semi-sabbatical” from writing content posts in December. I just felt the need to step back, re-group, and refine where I wanted the blog to go in 2013. I’m excited to have a plan crafted for the blog and direction for 2013 — I’ve really missed writing substantive posts here and can’t wait to get back to it!

By the way, don’t panic, there won’t be any drastic changes taking place! However, I do hope to be much more intentional, organized, and consistent in my blogging in this coming year.

In addition, while I want to continue to bring you the best deals, coupons, and freebies — both online and offline, I’m going to put a big emphasis on writing posts and series, as well as sharing my weekly goals and meal plans, do-it-yourself ideas, money-saving tips, our family’s favorite recipes, freezer cooking sessions, preschool on a budget ideas, and more.

Over the next few days, I’ll be sharing my top 20 books from 2012, some recommended organizational reads for 2013, my goal list for 2013, what I learned about goal-setting in 2012, and my list of 24 books to read in 2013. Plus, of course, lots of great deals. 🙂

Thank you, as always, for reading here. I’m looking forward to what 2013 has in store!

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  • Crystal, for what it’s worth, I check your blog often (sometimes several times a day) because I love exactly those kinds of posts – the ones about time management, homemaking, goals, the We Paid Cash posts, how-tos, etc. I stopped couponing awhile back but still love this blog just for those types of things. So I’m super-excited to read more of that! Thanks for staying in it for the long haul!

  • Melissa says:

    Yeah. I like hearing about you and your family as well as your financial successes. Looking forward to more “meaty” posts.

  • J says:

    Sweet picture. I have no idea how you managed to get all three to smile at the same time. One out of three was always doing something else.

  • Kayla H says:

    I am so excited! 🙂 I love your posts and series. Yay!

  • Meredith M says:

    Sounds great! Merry Christmas!

    • Becky says:

      Crystal, thank you so much for all the time you put into your blog. You impart so much time tested knowledge & wisdom to us, your readers. May God bless you & keep you in great health & peace so that you can continue to fulfill the calling that you have in your life. I follow you on twitter, I love to get the updates of your new posts.

  • Sarabell says:

    I love that you have articles for all areas of life and I am so excited to see what all you come up with!

  • Brandi says:

    I’m anxious to see your list of top books you read last year, I’m always looking for new wholesome books to read!

  • Jennifer says:

    This all sounds so wonderful, Crystal. I’ve been a MSM follower for over 4 years now, before you got “super big” and have just loved watching how your blog, and you personally, have evolved. I did notice your mini-sabbatical and kinda wondered what was going on, so I’m very happy to hear about your plans for 2013. Sounds like you’ve got it figured out and will look forward to reading throughout 2013 and beyond! Belated Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

  • bobbie says:

    I dont usually comment, but i was really excited to read your plans for 2013. Ill be honest, finances are tough for us right now, so its hard for me to come to this blog and see mostly shopping deals, etc. I am too broke to shop, ha! Sometimes its discouraging to me and i havent been visiting that often lately, even though i know you mean well and it probably helps people other than myself. I like to see your recipes, your money saving tips, organizational tips, and especially thr freezer cooking, etc. Those things are great and im so excited to see more of that! Thank you!

  • Elisabeth says:

    Crystal, come to Columbus, Indiana in 2013… please!

  • Missy G. says:

    Merry Christmas to you and the fam, too!

    Just wanted to also point out to other readers that may have missed it (like me), you can subscribe to the LITE feed, which will just give you the content-rich posts. I appreciate those posts more than the deals/coupons posts, and they tend to get lost in my blog reader. I’m so glad that you have this option, Crystal!

    Looking forward to seeing what you have planned for 2013. 🙂

  • Tiffany Bell says:

    Beautiful children. Looking forward to what you have in store for 2013!

  • brooke says:

    yay! looking forward to new content posts in 2013… that’s my favorite part of the blog. you’re so encouraging & real 🙂

  • Susan in St. Louis says:

    Merry Christmas to you too, Crystal! 🙂 I had noticed the change this past month and just thought you were busy working on something else (you always have lots of irons in the fire!). I’m looking forward to another year with “Money Saving Mom and Co.” Thank you for all that you do; God has certainly used you in my life to help me depend more on Him, make use of the time He has given me, and steward well the gifts of mothering and homemaking. Thank you!

  • lisa cour says:

    You do a wonderful job with this blog. I love how you honestly share and you’ve inspired me to start posting my goals for 2013…previously I considered them too personal to share, but I think the accountability will be beneficial.

    The kids are just adorable!!

  • Jean says:

    Such beautiful precious children. Will there be a seperate area just for deals like freebies and Walgreens weeky deals?

    • Crystal says:

      I don’t want to just give people good bargains; I want to help them have a paradigm shift in their thinking about life and money. Bargains are great — and helpful! — but good deals won’t change your life. So, in addition to sharing deals, coupons, and freebies, I’m committed to providing content that will challenge and inspire others to live with purpose and intentionality, because that’s going to have a much longer lasting impact than just snagging some hot deals or freebies.

      That said, you can always click on “Deals” in the header and it will show all of the recent online and in-store deal posts. Or, you can click on “Freebies” to see all the recent freebies posted. You can also check the sidebar for the Top 5 Hottest Deals posted recently.

      I hope that helps — and thanks for reading!

  • Alice says:

    I greatly look forward to hearing more about how your goals went this year, and what your 2013 goals will be. Thanks to you, I have been starting to make a list for next year, in the hopes of living more intentionally. I hope to soon learn more about setting goals and actually accomplishing them!

  • HeatherC says:

    Merry Christmas! As a long (long) time reader I am thrilled to see that you are planning to do more posts and series. My favorites are always your homemaking tips- and I’m not even a full time homemaker! Love the insight into how it all works for your family- putting the bargains, deals and frugal lifestyle to work. Looking forward to it all! 🙂 Happy 2013

  • Shelly says:

    Such a great picture of your kids. It is great to take a little time to unplug. I wasn’t online much the last week and it was so nice to just take a little break. You have inspired me to set some goals for the whole year instead of just weekly goals so I took some time to start planning them out. I am actually setting a goal to read 12 books this year. Most will likely be some free e books I have gotten but haven’t found the time to read.

    It is great to hear your plans for this next year. I really liked following along with your cleaning/organizing series and the freezer cooking. I am hoping to do a few series this year too.

  • MamaHen says:

    I am super excited about the recipes and freezer meal ideas!

  • Tabitha says:

    I’m excited to see what you’ve got planned for 2013! This year has been a great year and I continue to learn so much from you. I love reading your blog to be better at homemaking, time saving ideas, goal setting and organization. And of course menu planning!! Thank you for all you do. I’m glad you had a great Christmas and have a happy New Year! Keep up the great work! (It’s never unnoticed.)

  • Madelyn says:

    I enjoy ALL your posts! The deals and bargains are very helpful on a practical level. The content-rich posts are very encouraging and educational. The Money Saving Mom blog has been a positive influence in my life for several years. THANK YOU, Crystal!!

  • Carole says:

    Beautiful children!

  • Kelly says:

    I very much enjoy your longer, series posts. Looking forward to it!

  • Kristy says:

    I’m looking forward to those kinds of posts! Right now I’m having a great time searching your archives for posts just like that, plus browsing through your current deals posts. 🙂

    • lorena says:

      Merry Christmas, Crystal! I’m glad to hear about your plans for 2013 and I’m looking forward to seeing all the great ideas you have for the blog. I started my blog almost a year ago and I’ve been mostly focusing on coupon deals and giveaways but I’m also planning to start posting more series and more content-rich material which I feel will benefit more of my readers. Thanks for the hard work you put into this blog. It’s very much appreciated!

  • Kay says:

    I love your series post! Excited for what you will bring this year, ism sure it will all be great. I would love to hear more about your marriage and how you juggle that with three kids. Ha, I have a hard time with one child and a husband.

  • Maria says:

    Crystal, thank you so much. I cannot wait to get my hands on your 24 books to read in 2013. May the Lord continue to bless you and your family.

  • shannon says:

    Crystal, I want to thank you for making me a better homemaker. I have always been intimidated by cooking, extensive cleaning, balancing time for my family, God and myself, and managing our household. I found you at just the perfect time 2 years ago when my first son was born and thank God for that. I have been inspired by you to cook more healthy meals, realize my goals, achieve at least half of them, make the most of my time as a stay at home mom and to give more often. I always thought I had to be rich to give but you have shown me that there are so many creative ways to give to others and it has made such a difference. I am looking forward to learning how you plan to tackle the year 2013 and I will be doing the best I can to keep up with you. You are such a blessing and thank you for embracing the path God has chosen for you.

  • holi says:

    I love this Photo! The kids are so adorable and growing up so fast!

  • K says:

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your family Crystal!
    God bless you 🙂

  • Jaclyn says:

    You continue to be a great encouragement to me in my walk with the Lord, in homemaking and in stewardship. I have learned so much from you and look forward to seeing how God continues to change me in 2013. My husband and I are continuing a journey of purging. We have never had that much stuff, but we are finding so much freedom in getting rid of things we do not need. We want to be ready for what ever God has for us. We want to love Him above all things and not hold tightly to anything in this world. We have this quote above our computer:

    “Oh, to behold the glory of Christ! Here in would I live, here in would I die, here on would I dwell in my thoughts and affections until all things here below become as dead and deformed things and in no longer, any way, calling out for my affections.” ! ~John Owen

    May God continue to give you guidance in this blog and in your ministry to all of us in 2013!

  • Kara M says:

    I LOVE your plans for blogging for 2013. I absolutely love reading your writing posts and the series. I’ve followed you for several years now and you have impacted this already pretty frugal girl a lot! Keep it coming!!

  • Susanne says:

    Thank you Crystal, for all you do to help us as homemakers.
    Looking forward to Money Saving Mom’s 2013 posts.

  • Elizabeth Kane says:

    This picture of your kids together is great! Gotta say, it’s been nice taking a few days offline, drinking too much hot chocolate, apple cider with family and friends while sleeping in and lounging in my robe on these cold mornings. Right now, I’m working beside the beautiful tree – it’ll be on it’s way out soon, so I’m enjoying it while I can.

    Before I get back to goal setting and to-do list planning, I want to look back on what I’ve learned too. Excited about what you’re planning for the new year here!

  • Diane says:

    What a lovely family you have. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

    • Emily says:

      I just want to say what a bunch of cuties you’ve got! They are adorable! I hope you had a Merry Christmas and have a Happy New Year.

  • Jenny says:

    Your 2013 plans have all of my favorite topics! Can’t wait to set goals with you next year. Thanks for being an awesome blogger!

  • Ami says:

    Your content posts are so helpful in encouraging me to reach for goals and live more generously. You are doing great at coming up with articles that are challenging, setting a good example, or raising my awareness without making me feel at all guilty or like I’m somehow failing. When you throw in the posts on bargains – your blog is the perfect mix for me! Thank you for continuing to do the work of writing such inspiring posts!

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