This Week In My Home: Fresh Savings

Another of my copy-cat crafts.  I fashioned this basket after an MSL design...It cost me $3 for                             the Spanish Moss I used as my filler.  Everything else was on hand.

Saturday:  I made pizza from scratch.  I put homemade yeast dough in the fridge Friday, along with prepared vegetables and cheese I grated.  Today I spread dough on the pan and let it rise a bit then topped and baked.

Dug about in the fridge and found some green olives I'd bought that had pits in them.  I sliced the olives away from the pit.  I put the pits aside and when I was done I sat down and ate the remaining flesh off the pits.  I think I prefer the flavor of green olives with pits in them.

Went through the magazines Mama gave me last week and pulled the pages that interested me.

Sunday:  Prepped and cooked dinner while I made breakfast.  John likes a turkey sausage stick (like a Slim Jim sort of thing) we get at Aldi.  I had wrapped some in waxed paper for his lunch.  They got put in fridge and dried out.  I used the dried sausage in the black beans to season.

I used two sausage patties to make sausage gravy and served over warmed leftover biscuits.

We carried some clothing and household items with us to church.  There are donation bins on the church property for the Rescue Mission.

After church we went to Best Buy.  I had to return my Downtown Abby DVD.  I'd picked up a Blu-ray edition and we don't have a Blu-ray player.  I was happy to find I could exchange mine for the proper discs and I got a $5 refund in the price difference.

We purchased a new router while we were there.  We won't be able to get internet service elsewhere.  Our provider is the only service for our area, but we can at least have a better router than the service provides us.

Stopped at Publix.  I wanted to buy some of the Nathan hot dogs that were on sale.  I spent all the rest of my grocery budget and a bit more besides.  I'm not fretting.  I didn't buy anything that wasn't needed or on too good a sale to pass up.

We came home and ate the dinner I made before church this morning.

I ended up calling our internet service provider's 24/7 number to get the new router set up.  They don't normally do this but we've been customers for a long time...and we'll be staying customers.  The young man who helped was nice as could be and patient as well.

Chatted with my daughter in law and my daughter via Facebook chat.

John washed a load of clothes.  Too wet to hang dry, most went into the dryer.

Monday:   Packed the lunch I made for John last night.  Made him breakfast this morning.

Ran a full load of dishes in the dishwasher.

Washed sheets and towels this morning, too.

Out with Mama today.  I wanted to look for some tank tops.   I found one that I liked on the clearance rack for $10.  I paid for it out of my allowance.

Mama's day to treat us to lunch, my day to leave tip and buy our ice creams.  I paid from allowance for both those items, too.

Took advantage of a Shutterfly offer to make a gift for Mother's Day.  I am so impressed with this company and their products and their awesome promotions.

Tuesday:  Stretched a small piece of Polska kielbasa by cutting into pieces and adding to hash browns.  I also made nests in the pan of potatoes, cracked two eggs into them and covered to cook the eggs through.  It was really tasty.

Toasted frozen waffles.  That was the last of that big batch of waffles I made up last month.

I went out to the shed to look for an item.  While there I swept up a bit of dirt and trash,  put some things away and found the items I was looking for.  I also remembered seeing an item I think one of the Athens guys could use for grilling so I pulled that grill pan  out to see who wants it.  Our grill is too small to fit the thing.

Fed pets. Put away foods when they were done.

Started sewing my new kitchen curtains.  I used 2 Queen sized sheets to make four liner panels for the drapes.  There was a portion of each section of the liner panels that was trimmed off.  I pieced those together to use as a liner for the kitchen window curtain.  I will not line the drapes I put up at the laundry door closet.  It is an unnecessary thing for that doorway, but I will appreciate the liner behind the drapes at the window.

I needed a second table for ironing.  I have a small table top ironing board that I use but I had no available table.  I put a carton atop another and put the ironing board on them.  It was the perfect height for sitting and ironing.

While preparing potatoes for lunch, I diced 1 1/2, baked two.  I also pulled out the sweet potatoes and found three of them were not quite edible.  I took them right outdoors and planted them.  I don't know if they will sprout and grow or not.  At worst I've just added fertilizer to my planter.  At best, I may have free sweet potato vines in my planter.  I baked two sweet potatoes that were in good shape.

I used the last of the punnet of mushrooms.

We ate leftovers of pizza for our supper tonight.

Wednesday:  We went out to get hair cuts.  I batched errands as usual: packed up trash to take to dumpster, picked up mail and dropped off a bill.  We had no other errands to run but we took a sort of roundabout way home.

I put lunch in the crock pot before we left.  Despite this, we ate out.  We shared a take out entree and an order of fries and enjoyed the misty spring day as we drove home.  The crock pot meal became supper.

John told me on the way home he really wanted some ice cream.  I suggested he go by the local grocery and I'd pick some out and get a gallon of milk and a dozen eggs while I was there.  He seemed pretty happy over that.  Though it was not the very best buy I chose to buy pints instead of a half gallon.  We've cut so far down on our ice cream and chips that it hardly pays to buy the larger quantities any more.  I'm glad the half pints were on sale this week.

Sewing all afternoon long.  I finished all but hemming the last two panels.

I used a piece of scrap fabric to make an envelope pillow slip for a pillow form I had on hand.  It looks lovely on the chair in the kitchen sitting area.

John washed a load of clothes.  He pulled a few things from his work bag to add to the load to fill the washer a little fuller.

Thursday:  Luxury...I slept in.  I won't get to do so over the weekend at all, so I thought I'd take advantage today.  I've a few busy days ahead.  Rest while resting is available is my motto.

I took a frozen entree from the freezer.  We ate half for dinner today and I'll serve the other half for our dinner on Sunday after church.  I am down to a few packets of yeast and a handful each of saltines and oyster crackers.  I will take the yeast packets to Sam.  We should finish the crackers over the week ahead.

Finished and hung the curtain panels.  They are not perfect but they are lovely.  I had them hung and was straightening the area up when John came in.  I could see right away that he liked them, too. It spurred me to attempt to get the sink window and laundry doorway curtains made.  I got the laundry curtain done and almost hemmed when my sewing machine died.  I'm not sure how old it is.  It was Grandmama's and she gave it to me some 20 years ago perhaps.  Now I have two broken machines, neither of which is valued for as much as the diagnostic fee for repairs.

Hung a shelf I'd painted at the kitchen sink window, which is where it was once upon a time.  The screws were still in the wall under the window sill so no need to redo that.

This week I've completed surveys for Pinecone Research and NFS and cashed in for $25 in Paypal funds.

I cooked the last banana.  I was asked how I prepare them.  It's super easy and takes just a minute: I peel, slice into a frying pan with a spoon full of butter and add 1 packed tablespoon of brown sugar and 1 tablespoon of bourbon (we never have rum on hand but we keep bourbon for medicinal reasons).  It's quite good over vanilla ice cream and would be just as good with a bit of cinnamon or nutmeg added I think.

John had half an apple in the fridge.  The apples I chose this past week were quite large, so he halves them to eat.  We shared the half that was in the fridge.  Made a just right amount for a quick snack.

Friday:  Packed the work lunch I prepared last night for John's work day.  I made him breakfast...and had some toast to go with my coffee.  I try not to eat that early as a rule because it leads to second and third breakfasts, early dinners and early suppers and a snack before bedtime.  As it was I cooked myself two eggs about 10am this morning.

I kept trying to turn my brain around into how I could cover the kitchen window, until I have time and money to get a blind and a sewing machine once more.  My solution was not ideal and it's all mismatched but it does give me the privacy I like at night and it cost very little.  $3 for a tension rod, the remnants from the other curtains and a variety of clip rings.  From a distance it looks not too badly and up close it's  good thing to remind myself this is a 'needs must' sort of thing and not a permanent solution.

Bought the tension rod at the dollar store.  Brought it home and it promptly sprung and split the outer rod cover.  I was so peeved.  I worked with it for a half hour or so and got it together once more and sort of working.

Went in to work on my booth and sold an item while I was there.  I didn't see a whole lot missing so I'm not sure how I've done this month but the booth was certainly looking lovely and fresh when I left.

Came home and had dinner of a frozen single serve entree I'd put up from leftovers.

Supper was frozen leftovers as well.

Hung a load of drapes outdoors to dry and air after I washed them this morning.

Washed a full load of dishes after my dinner today.  I added in the coffee pot carafe, a couple of decorative pottery pieces that I'd decided to no longer use, and a few other items to make sure the machine was nicely full.

Made myself a single serve cup of coffee for mid-afternoon.

Living Well

A few years ago I planted a yellow Knockout rose at my doorstep.  Each year, from spring through early winter it bloomed, sometimes prolifically and sometimes with just one or two buds at a time.  It was the loveliest thing.  When we put the new steps on the back porch, the rose bush had to go.  My brother dug it up and put it in a pot of good fertile soil...and it turned up it's roots and died.  I was sorry to see that little rose bush go.  In the five years it sat next to the doorstep it was a good companion and a faithful beauty.

As summer came on we noted that a vine kept growing up through the back porch floorboard gap.  I clipped it off a few times and John even sprayed it but over the week we were gone to the mountains it grew and when we came home there was a tiny yellow bud...Some bit of root left behind had grown under the steps, through feet of darkness to the porch flooring and set a bloom.

Of course you can't have a rose bush growing up in the middle of the porch.  So we kept it clipped back.

Over the winter this bush has grown out through the lattice that edges the porch and that little branch is as full of green leaves as it can be now that spring has come.  It's been a lesson to me in that sometimes, no matter how tough our circumstances seem, we just have to push towards the light and grow anyway.  We have to adapt to where we are and not where we'd like to be.  We have to accept what is, rather than looking for ideal circumstances.  And if we keep at it, we'll make a way to bloom anyway.

I can't dig the little bush up.  But I'm not going to cut it back now that it's found a path to grow.  I've contemplated taking a cutting and trying to root it but I think I'm going to try another method and just bury a portion of the branch and see if it won't root itself.  Right where it pokes out of that darkness.  And God willing, may I adapt and bloom right where I am regardless of the circumstances!


Annabel Smith said...

I love picnics and I love a rearrange and freshen up and decorating with what you have! Very nice. It is lovely weather so I think we should plan some picnics... Autumn here xxx

Kathy said...

Love the rose story! What a wonderful perspective. Thank you!

doe853 said...

Dear Terri,
I have been having a rough week here, bad cabin fever, still snowing on and off and cold. Your little rose story made me cry but also gave me hope, thank you. I was wondering how big your table ironing board is, would it fit on an open kitchen drawer to support it for extra room? I do that for extra cutting board space sometimes. Have a good week, April soon! Dale

Anonymous said...

Loved the rose story/lesson. :-) I have a huge window in the kitchen. Our one table for the house sits by it. The window is bigger than the table. Too big. All through the years I have tried different window treatments but all seem wrong. One day I will figure this out! I did find some used pieces of material I loved and got them and even if the 'look' still is not right when I get them sewn they will be better than none...which is what is there now!!
I set up my wood ironing board by the back door or use the pull our board from the counter with a towel on for quick jobs. No matter when I use either that is the one place that someone wants to be and I am in the way!! Any other day no one would be needing that space! isn't life funny!!
I have another made ahead and frozen dinner idea to use tonight for dinner. Add a few new sides and dinner will be done! I found several new ideas for sides I know we will love and will be trying them. Isn't it interesting how the same ingredients put together differently and spiced up makes a whole new dish!! After 45 years I needed some more new recipes!
The outdoors is pulling me more each day that it heats up. 90s this week. :( :) While it is still cooler I need to work and get what I can done. If it is not done by the end of June it is too late. It is too hot to do anything but go out and pick and water.
I would not recognize your home if I saw it but I 'see' it in my mind as you describe projects and such. Like I said, it feels like we all know you even if we really are not personally there! We get and give each other inspiration and information and pep talks!
I was getting something out of the freezer and discovered a couple things I forgot I had. Now they are off the grocery list. Also found a couple things rooting around in storage to use in a new way and that helped also. We went to Salvation Army and found a sturdy plant stand for half price.I thought full price was fair so half was great!! Lately we must get there when all we would want has been bought. What is left looks very very haggard and useless for us. Than after being married so many years what do we really "need"? :-) Most of the time we are looking for others as many tell us what to look for when we are out and about. Well it is time to get supper done! Sarah

Sarah said...

I love your weekly frugal happenings. Today's frugal thing was making my own "resurrection eggs." I had been gifted the book, "Benjamin's Box" by a friend and went about making my own set of eggs for my daughter to open instead of buying it premade. She loved it. :)

Laura Foye said...

Sounds like you had a really great week! I love the centerpiece on your table, and I am going to try your 'hash brown nests' some time - that sounds both tasty and attractive. :)

Julie Baker said...

I learned a new word from your blog, how fun...I love words. Oh, the word I'd not heard of before was punnet. Can't wait to use it on my sister. Haha.

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