This Week In My Home: Fair Savings

Know what this is?  $8 worth of smiles that will last me months, from now until deep Spring.  

Saturday:  Rain woke me extra early this morning.  I turned on the light, took up my book and read in bed.  Gracious but that felt luxurious. And it cost me nothing but one hour of missed sleep.  No complaints over the rain.  It was a nice watering for my freshly planted things.

Made Apple Gingerbread waffles from Pancake mix, spices and one last wrinkly apple that was about three weeks old.  Boy were these good!

I put water in the pan I cooked sausage in and scraped it down good.  This went over Maddie and Misu's foods.  

I wanted a baked potato.  I'm allowed waxy potatoes but not Russets which have a higher starch content.   I decided to bake the Yukon gold potatoes I had.  I chose one about the size of what I'm allowed to have.  I wanted to dress up my potato so I sliced it, sliced onions thin, cut slices into the potatoes but not all the way through, and fit the thin onion pieces between the slices.  1 teaspoon of butter on each potato and salt and pepper.  I wrapped in  aluminum foil and baked.  

When we go to the meat market we allow ourselves the splurge of one good cut of steak.  We'll have steak dinners now and then but we'll use the less expensive (and less fat) sirloins we purchased.  That steak today was really tasty and tender.  Yum.  I can't wait until we return to meat market in four or five months.

Attended my great niece's first birthday party.  It's so special to get to help celebrate these little extended family lives.

I had planned a meal for supper but I've been feeling a little down all day long.  No good reason why except missed sleep and working hard all week long.  I decided a frozen pizza and fresh fruit was easy enough and would generate a lot less work in cleaning up after.  Done.

Sunday:  Made a simple breakfast this morning.  I'd meant to have cereal with our bagels but John had a cup of cereal late last night, I knew milk was getting low and I won't buy more until at least Tuesday.  So we skipped cereal and just ate bagels.  It was enough.

I meant to make chicken and dressing in the crock pot today but ran into two problems.  I discovered last night that I had far too little cornbread in the freezer to even consider mixing up dressing.  Then I woke up later than planned this morning.  There were other tasks to attend to like making the bed, feeding the pets, putting on my make up and gathering the trash and mail that needed to go out with us. And yes, we did the last two things on our way to church.

I asked John to purchase lunch for today from Publix.  They had a $10.99 special on a rotisserie or 8 piece fried chicken, and 2 16 ounce sides of macaroni or potato salad, and baked beans, plus a four pack of Hawaiian Sweet Rolls.  It seemed a good bargain to me, as we easily will get two meals and a lunch off the chicken.  Since John was buying it was the 8 piece fried chicken that appealed to him.  I didn't complain.  I can peel off the skin.  Leftovers packed into fridge.  It was suggested they'd be dinner tomorrow after we visit the fair.

I cleaned kitchen well this afternoon after dinner.

Scanned through the newspaper and found three valuable coupons hiding among the pages.  One for Hobby Lobby, one for 35% off books at a used book store where Mama wants to turn books in,  and another coupon that escapes me at the moment but it was relevant to me.  These were 'extras' over and above the flyers and sheets included.

I saw an item in Target sales flyer that I really like but owie on the price.  I recalled seeing something unfinished but similar at the craft stores.  I finally located some online.  They isn't much difference in the price of the item at Target and the unfinished one at the craft store, just $1. That isn't enough savings to warrant either purchase.  

Did a medium load of laundry.  I had to use the dryer today.  It's too cool and too cloudy to even pretend they'd have dried outdoors.  I was careful to check the clothes so they weren't in any longer than necessary.  30 minutes was the right amount of time.

John opted to have chocolate milk with his supper sandwich.  Good call on holding off on that cereal this morning!

Monday:  John asked last night what time the fair opened today.  I went to their Facebook page and found the information he wanted...and discovered that today was Patriot Day.  Veterans, Military Personnel, Retired Military could all get in FREE as well as immediate family members.  You had to show ID, which we don't have.  What we do have, as nearly all discharged veterans do, is a DD214, which is a handy little piece of military paperwork that you must keep and show for doggone near every single major and minor life event until the hereafter.  John presented his DD214 and license to the window.  Apparently that was not some thing they'd been presented with before but it was soon approved and we were allowed to bypass entrance fees.

What did we purchase at the fair?  We've never been fans of overpriced foodstuffs or gadgets, etc.  Today we bought 2 beverages and 2 burgers at the VFW booth.  On our way out of the fairgrounds I stopped at a food booth and bought a bag of hot boiled peanuts, a seasonal treat here in Georgia come autumn.  That was it.

I carried a bottle of water along with me to the fair.  I saw no need to pay $3 a bottle for what cost me nothing at home.  Had I needed, I could  have refilled at any water fountain for free.

We always enjoy visiting the model mobile homes.  This year there was only one home on the grounds.  John was interested in the flooring which was a laminate that is laid with grout.  I noted the kitchen counter tops which looked high end granite.  They weren't, which I knew when I touched it.  It was a sheet of Formica with a granite look pattern which had been edged with bull nosed ceramic tile on the counters and island.  Very clever idea that truly did look high end.  I'd been discussing something similar with John recently after reading at a popular home design blog that many European homes use a granite look Formica rather than granite.  We also liked the stone finished skirting about the outside of the house which is an item we can buy and have installed about our home.  I may not have finances for a beautiful new home with four bedrooms and a laundry room the size of my kitchen and a den as well as a living room {{{{SIGH}}}}, but I can certainly use new ideas for improvements I might make in the home I have.

When we left the fair we headed out in another way, trying to avoid the heavy incoming traffic.  Fortunately I know the area very well and was able to guide John about the roadways, saving many miles and a good bit of time.

John decided to take the long way home.  No complaints.  It was so beautiful and we'd enjoyed our day and John didn't want it to end too soon, so we spent a little extra gasoline getting home.  It's cheap entertainment  and we enjoyed riding through the country roads with windows down.

We ate leftovers for our supper this evening.  I didn't want anything big nor heavy so asked John to half a chicken breast for me.  John will take the rest of that breast and a thigh, plus leftover macaroni salad in his work lunch tomorrow.

I am shocked to hear from family and friends how warm it is in their areas much farther north and west of us.  We've had autumn like temperatures the past three days.  Very little AC running here although I must note that I lowered the thermostat two points the other night and have yet to turn it up to the usual temperature.

Tuesday:  Made John breakfast and packed his lunch.  It seemed a little 'light' to me so I added a microwaveable mac and cheese.  If he doesn't eat it that's fine but if he happens to be hungry he will have it there and not be tempted to go out and spend on other foods.

Decided this morning as I paid bills that I really needed to set aside a little extra towards medical bills...and of course, I received a whopper medical bill in the mail today.  Not nearly enough in my medical funds to pay it but the point is that I was timely in my thinking it was time to build that sub account up once more.

When I got grocery money from the bank today I made sure to subtract the money I spent last week  on all those great specials.

Debated many scenarios:  Should I go to CVS and buy milk and whatever with ECBs or wait?  Shop local (nixed that as I dislike the flavor of the store brand milk).  I finally decided upon Dollar store where I bought a half gallon of milk, a solar light for that lamp on the front porch and two sets of dish cloths that struck me as pretty napkins.  I need fresh napkins as mine are all looking pretty stained and rough despite stain treating them.

I paid for postage on packages and the dollar store purchases from the grocery funds in hand.  

Received a free book from Blogging for Books to review.

Didn't go thrifting today.  Instead I worked on cleaning up my most recent thrift purchase.

Boiled chicken breasts for enchiladas.

Turned off lights all over house and let natural light suffice.

Washed a full load of dishes in the dishwasher.

Wednesday:  I actually got cold during the night and got up to cut off the fan.

I had three ripe bananas.  I didn't want to put them in the freezer.  Instead, I decided to use an old recipe and bake Pumpkin Banana Bread.  It's an old Land O Lakes butter recipe.  I decreased the butter and used as much applesauce to make up the difference.  I also used a diabetic sugar substitute I picked up on clearance.  The recipe makes two loaves.  It only required half a can of pumpkin and two bananas. I tasted this bread and it turned out just fine even with my modifications.

So I pulled up two recipes I'd seen online.  One was for a Banana Peanut Butter and Honey muffin that used whole wheat flour, Greek non-fat yogurt.  I had a full quart of yogurt that needs to be used this week.  Glad I found that recipe.  I haven't tried them but they smelled wonderful.  John approved.  He is official taste tester when it comes to breads and muffins.

I put half the muffins in the freezer.

With the remaining pumpkin I made a half recipe of Pumpkin, Bean and Chicken Enchiladas.  I substituted with this as well.  I used black beans in place of the kidney beans called for in the recipe. My corn tortillas were smaller than those used in the recipe but despite this I got 7 enchiladas from the recipe, enough for two meals.  It was very good by the way and I will be making this recipe again.

Finally this morning I baked two loaves of this whole wheat bread.  It. is. awesome.  My plan was to bake it for this and next Shabat. John couldn't wait to cut one loaf so now I have a loaf for this Shabat and the need to make more.  On the other hand, it's good bread, which makes up in aces for the no good so called 'french bread' I made a couple of weeks go.  By the way, the recipe calls for 2 tablespoons of dry yeast.  That is 3 packets of yeast if you happen to be using packages of yeast.  

I had windows open for a portion of the day, despite having the oven on.

John washed a load of clothes and dried on the line.

I located a copy of my doctor's orders to take to the new lab I need to use for labs.  Then we checked to be sure it was also a preferred provider facility for John to use for labs, too.

Gave myself a fresh pedicure. 

Thursday:  We took off trash this morning on our way to buy groceries and get labs done.

I had a short list, consisting mostly of produce and dairy items and that's just what we bought.  I had noted recently that I seemed to never have a variety of the needed fresh vegetables on hand and as the pay period dwindled to an end, I was lost for ideas.  I bought far more produce this time around than I usually do.  Fortunately if I find we're unable to eat it all, I can freeze many items.

Bought a much smaller spaghetti squash than I purchased last time.  I have this thought with Aldi's all one price items that I should get the biggest I can find.  Well that is a grand idea, more value for the money and all that...if we eat it.  We didn't eat the rest of the spaghetti squash last time.  I'd rather have a smaller one and not end up tossing the remainder.

We went into Publix to pick up my prescription which was free.

We looked over fruit at Aldi and bought pears and kiwi.  I chose to purchase bagged mandarins and apples at Publix even though it was higher priced.  The produce looked far superior to Aldi's meager selection this week.

We didn't stick to our list at Publix.  Nope.  I forgot two or three items we'd meant to purchase there but we'll survive without them.

I ended up spending a little more than planned at the two stores.  Not a good feeling. I'm at that stage where the holes in my pantry are remaining holes and we're just keeping abreast of the items we'd normally use in a pay period.  

Came home and put away groceries then went out to clean porch railings, rafters and walls.  I'm afraid I wasn't a happy camper.  The job was difficult as much of it was overhead.  There is mildew on the porch from so many wet damp days and not enough dry sunny ones.  I discovered a hole in our siding and then I broke my rocker.  I had a pretty sour attitude by the time I came indoors.  Not good for anything at that point.  

I used some dishwasher detergent we were unable to use in our dishwasher due to our super soft water here.  Since it does have bleach in the mixture, it did a great job of helping to wash away the mildew.

We ate leftovers of the Pumpkin,Bean and Chicken Enchiladas for dinner tonight.  I made a salad.  John finished off the baked beans we'd brought home Sunday from the grocery.

I washed a full load of dishes.

Maddie refused to eat this morning. I put her food bowl back into the close container we keep it in so ants wouldn't make out like bandits.

After putting away all the clean dishes this evening and hanging up the clothes, etc., I made out a list of things to do tomorrow and planned meals for the weekend.

I took a few minutes this evening to get an attitude adjustment.  I was feeling very unhappy overall, dissatisfied with my home and myself, with our financial state, etc.  A rotten attitude, I assure you and of about as much use as that super mushy pear half I found in the fridge.  Yuck on all counts.
John put on a ministry program we often enjoy listening to but seldom seem to take time to find.  He went to the music room and played a wonderful bit of worship music.  I have no reason at all to be feeling so out of sorts.  I've been in worse shape and that's fact.  I have a life filled with blessings.  Shame on me for letting momentary and fleeting disappointments color my vision!  Here I am with my very own praise and worship leader in the house, ministering to my need and a good Lord who sees that this is what I needed.  Wonderful!

Friday:  Made breakfast for us  (as I do every morning) but this morning I cut down on the number of eggs used to make an omelet.  With a slice of homemade bread toasted, it was the right amount of food and we needed no more.  I'll keep that in mind in the future.  

I was about to start preparing our dinner for today and doing prep work for tomorrow's meal when John came in and said the front faucet was leaking and needed to be replaced.  He had to turn off the water at the pump.  I went right ahead with my prep work.  As it happens, I keep emergency water caught up in PETE juice bottles.  I have about 15 half gallon bottles under my counter in the kitchen. I use them each week to water the plants on the porches and in the house and refill.  Now I don't use all 15 bottles each week but I have a system where I rotate the usage and they are all refilled over the course of a month.  

In prepping food for Shabat on Saturday, I found I had just enough celery to make celery sticks for John to snack on over the weekend.  I put the root end and leaves in a bag with carrot top and bottoms and onion tops and bottoms to use in making chicken broth.

I prepped John's peanut butter and jelly sandwiches today.  They hold up well in a zippered bag in the fridge and I won't have to hurry to make them tomorrow evening after sundown.

John repaired the leaking faucet.  We actually have a plumber coming to the house to attend to a leak in our shower but John was able to do the repair work on the faucet outdoors.

John sprayed weed killer about the house and doorsteps.  His trigger broke on his sprayer and he improvised a fix for it to finish up the job.

We washed a full load of laundry today and the bulk of it was hung to dry.

And that's the savings in our household this week.  How did you save in yours?


Lana said...

Ugh! I am sorry to hear about your plumbing problems. We need to get a plumber out here as something is leaking in our master bath. I can hear it dripping downstairs in the kitchen and water is running out from under the siding on the back of the house. Not a lot but enough to be of real concern. I am glad to hear about the formica counters. We are going to do new counters and kitchen sink next and I do not want to go to expense of granite just to sell the house.

I won a free pizza from Dominos on Monday and it will be our supper tomorrow night and we will have enough leftover fr another supper on Sunday night.

I picked up a number of stocking stuffers that were good prices this week. I have a plastic shoe box in a closet with every family member's name on a box. I add to those boxes throughout the year. A few Christmas gifts were also added to the stash. I am coming along well with the shopping.

I had won a $100 credit at a deal shopping site a few months ago and have been on the lookout for a quilt for one of the guest beds. I found one and ordered it and it arrived today. It is in the dryer right now and I can't hardly wait to see it in the room.

A friend was in the hospital this week. We stopped at Dollar Tree and brought balloons to her when we visited. They were a big hit and much less expensive than other options. Every time I have talked to her this week she has mentioned the balloons.

I cherry picked deals at the grocery stores this week. I was careful about overbuying perishables as we will head out to the lake house on Wednesday next week and I do not want to have too much on hand. We will be volunteering at the civic auditorium by taking tickets and such while we are in our home away from home town. We will be able to take in the concert that night for free for volunteering. It will be steel drum island music which we enjoy but rarely have a chance to hear live. A savings of $28 on the tickets just for helping out.

Have a good weekend!

Anonymous said...

I am glad to hear John keeps up with so many home projects before they get worse.
When my cloth napkins or t towels get grimy and regular washing [and rubbing in water with Fels Napth soap don't work} I soak them over night in Oxi Clean and they are clean again. I used to get the little tubs of store brand at the 99c Only store but then did the math and the real Oxi Clean in the much larger box is cheaper when on sale at Costco. I put the water and it in a large covered bucket. I wait till I have several things to soak. I soak the whites first then do a darker group and so on reusing the Oxi.

I had to give my self an Attitude Adjustment last week. I was so exhausted. I got so cranky I just got off by myself and took a shower and give myself a talking to!! :) I was so glad I had a chance to be alone cause I sure would have not been good company!! For sure!!

I have been trying got accomplished the many many things that all seem to be needing done NOW! Then I look around and although I have done 3,.. 4 new things show up!! :( I try to realize how blessed I am to even be healthy and able to do any of them. I finally listed them as far as Real now- time importance and am trying to get some of those out of the way first. Making myself to not think ahead and get worried about what other things I am Not getting done. :) I feel sometimes like the man who used to be on Ed Sullivan who twirled the plates on sticks. REMmed er him? He kept so many going at one time. Working hard running from place to place to do it. At times everyone tries to keep to many plates spinning at one time ! Maybe you can do it for a little time but not for long !!

I am trying hard to not waste anything. Aren't we all! :) That goes for things besides food. I keep thinking of ways to reuse this and that. sometimes though it is just best to just throw them out then spend forever mending it to just have something fall apart again. Coming from Depression era parents and ones that were poor even after it it is hard to get rid of something that has Any worth. I have had to learn to lean and depend on God more and less on my own knowledge and skills to have things. Sarah

I told you about and want to tell you of one of her posts you will really understand. Called "Where is home when that place you called home is gone..." It is a post from December 27, 2013 but can be found under the link Living Like The Past at the top of her blog. Click on it then scroll till you see it listed. I have read its many times when I am homesick for 'my people'.

Colleen Gold said...

I love hearing about your long rides. As a child that was our weekend entertainment. We would all pile in the car and go for a nice long ride. My dad would find an old cemetery & send us to find the oldest grave. A nice way for us to blow off steam. We would then find a nice spot for a picnic lunch before heading for home. Wonderful memories

It must be in the air as I had a major melt down with myself also. I too am feeling much better & well blessed

Sew Blessed Maw [Judy] said...

SO sorry to hear about the plumbing problems. It gets so discouraging.. So proud that John was able to fix the leak. I get discouraged [unhappy] when things go sour too..Don't beat your self up. It's ok..
Your chicken enchiladas sound wonderful. I will have to try that recipe. thanks for sharing.
Your porch is going to be great.. Love what you have already done..
Have a blessed weekend. Judy

susie @ persimmon moon cottage said...

I am curious if the pumpkin, bean chicken enchiladas taste very pumpkin-y, or does the pumpkin add just a little extra something good to the flavor and texture?

Those formica faux granite countertops sound like a good thing. I have been wishing for marble countertops for my tiny length of kitchen counter ever since we moved into this house about 38 years ago. Maybe it's time I get real and go for something other than marble. I will check and see if they have formica faux marble.

Since my illness back at the end of May, it seems that there are a lot of days that I just sort of feel like I fall apart between 3 pm and 4 pm. Don't know what that is all about, but sometimes I have to just sit down awhile until I snap out of it. It helps if I do all of the dinner prep possible earlier in the afternoon.

We are having our second night down in the 30's tonight. Frost predicted for outside city areas. Had to cover my plants that will be coming in the house by the end of October. I haven't cleaned out a place inside for them yet. Indian Summer has officially arrived here near St. Louis.

Crystal H. in Nevada said...

I have wonderful memories of my Grandpa and I planting pansies, violets and daffodils. We did it so many years in a row. Especially the pansies. It was fun to see all the colors and pick the ones I wanted as a small girl.

Been down this week too. Money challenges and losing my dad last month really knocked me for a loop. But on the bright side we have a home and food to eat and everyday I wake up I thank God I'm still here. Count the blessings.
Take care.

vickie morgan said...

Oh I wish we could plant pansies and see them all winter. They are so pretty and give such hope for such a small plant! You've done really well this week Terri! Here is how I did this week:

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed your post. Thanks for sharing once again. Sometimes our feelings just get the best of us but it sounds like you did the right thing to get out of the slump, praise and being thankful. Smile.

I went down to the garden this morning and once again picked tomatoes. We have only had a light frost so tomatoes are still fine. You talked about doing what one can to save. Honestly? I DO NOT want to pick any more tomatoes!! BUT they are there and fine and I can get several meals from the ones I picked today, and as my hubs pointed out, soup is sounding better and better as the weather slowly gets cooler. I also picked a couple of small cabbages that are lovely. No worms decimated them! We do what we can to save.

With winter eventually coming, this has been a lovely long warmish fall, we are talking about how we can be better prepared for storms. I've heard it will be a hard winter, ask me next spring and I'll tell you for sure. Grin. Off to bed, Pam

This Week In My Home: Light Ahead

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