Monday, January 25, 2016

A Winter Storm & Frugal Accomplishments

I'm joining in with Frugal Accomplishments today.  Last week, I ran all my errands while in town.  Brought my reusable water bottle with me.  Bought canned organic beans at Aldi's for .79.  I went by Marshall's in search of a birthday present for my sister.  While I didn't have any luck with that, I did spy a 5 qt. red Cuisinart cast iron dutch oven on the clearance aisle.  The Cuisinart site lists it as $99.95, and I got it for $39.  While not entirely necessary, as I do have a vintage cast iron dutch oven I bought used years ago, I decided a second one in such a cheerful color was almost a necessity in these short days of winter :o).

Received a $4 check for a product I didn't care for and gave feedback on.  Redeemed $10 in points at Walgreens, for a couple of sale items and greeting cards.  Used a $25 gift card towards an Amazon purchase.  J decided to try the 30 day free trial of Amazon Prime, and stocked up on some food items while shipping was free.  When the powdered milk arrived, 2 of the bags had "exploded", and another had cracks in the corners.  That was rather a mess to clean up, but Amazon responded immediately, crediting him for the open bags.  When I cleaned up the spilled milk powder, I put it in canning jars, and will use it for the animals.  With the very cold weather (some mid teens at night), I've been giving the dogs, cats and chickens yogurt with a good amount of crumbled dried nettles in it.  I warm up just a touch of milk to add to it, to take the chill off, requiring less of their bodies heat to digest.  The chickens have also been getting extra corn and oats to help them stay warm, plus an extra thick layer of straw in their coop, which makes a noticeable difference.  I have an old wool rug in the shed, and fixed it to make a cozy sleeping spot for the farm kitties.

one brave soul
we'll just stay right here, thanks
Cashed in Swagbucks points for an Amazon gift card.  Made a pumpkin pie with our pumpkin and eggs.  I had never used the whipping cream I bought for the holidays, so whipped up a cup of it to top the slices of pie.  We had some whipped cream left, so I made from scratch dark chocolate pudding, so we could top that too.  A whole lot of fat, but hey, it's cold outside, and we're expecting a winter storm these next few days.  Can't think of a better time to take on those calories.  I made yogurt and kefir.  I enjoyed a breakfast of our eggs and toast with my mixed berry jam.  Made tomato rice loaf with our tomatoes, garlic, bread crumbs and kefir.  Also made okra I had frozen, and used our sweet potatoes in a new dish.  Though I had an idea, I wasn't sure what our canned bean status was when I bought the beans at Aldi's earlier in the week.  I took a count, and bought more black and garbanzo beans to stock up further, when I brought M to get some pre-storm groceries.

Callie kitty
morning light & muffins beneath the cloth
Went through ebates to purchase heartworm meds for McNibs, for the cash back.  I also used their free shipping code.  Made muffins using some home canned applesauce and passionfruit curd for the fruit, along with our eggs.  We did get mostly sleet, with some snow and freezing rain too.  Things are pretty crunchy out there.  Hopefully, there will be a good amount of melting tomorrow.  I made lentil soup with a jar of my broth.  For the past few winters, I've intended to make fresh pasta with my pasta machine.  Just before the winter storm, I brought it in from the shed, and on Sunday, cleaned it all up.  It had not been used in many years, and in fact, has barely been used at all since I was gifted it in the early 80's.  J put it back together, and made pasta while I prepared the sauce with mostly all homestead ingredients, salad and bread.  It was quite simple, and tasty.  I see some more homemade pasta dinners in our future.  If you have any pasta recipes to share, I'd love to hear.  I saw some interesting animal tracks in the snow, and hope to share them in another post.


Michèle Hastings said...

I am having extreme dutch oven envy! I have been wanting to buy one, but most are so expensive. Was that the last one at Marshall's?

Laurie said...

It was the only one in the clearance aisle, Michele. When I peeled off the sticker, it looked like they were usually $49.99 there, so just $10 more. The one I got had a couple small chips on the lid edge, which was OK by me. Not sure if they had any at regular price, but the cashier made it sound like they had them regularly.

April said...

Laurie, I always come to your blog when I am looking for (NEED) a quiet respite. Between your photos and your taking the reader through your days and ways, you always make us feel welcome. Love the first photo!

Michèle Hastings said...

Thanks for the info Laurie - even $49 is good price. I am going to look next time I am there.

Laurie said...

April, I wish you were closer so you could come enjoy this peaceful spot whenever you needed.