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Monday, January 28, 2019
Hello, friends. With temps in the teens, I put extra suet out for the birds, and gave extra scratch to the chickens in the evenings. We also left the heat lamp on for the chickens some nights. Morning walks with the pups have been frosty most days. Eggs were boiled for us and the pups. Another kitchen drawer was cleaned. One of the things in my husband's current diet is green onions, but only the green parts. I dehydrated the white portions, to put in the pantry. J wasn't using kale as quickly as we thought he would, so I found a recipe that used some, along with mushrooms, which I bought last week and needed using too. Cold days make me think of warm chores, so I caught up on my ironing. Paper and cardboard from the shredder went in to the compost bin. The new boots arrived, and will work well. I need to seal them before hiking, but wore them for a night on the town, and they were comfortable and warm. Happy!
After working in town, I picked up a few things at the discount grocery. While at Walgreens to drop off orders for Fedex, I used a $5 reward and purchased a 6 pack of large kleenex boxes marked down to $4.49. I also got BOGO almonds. Tractor Supply had sent a 10% off coupon, so I stocked up on chicken feed and cat food using that. I got groceries at Aldi's, including 8 cans of organic beans @ .89. I got more olive oil while there, as it's the cheapest I've found lately, at .15/oz. J had the idea to ask the owner of the restaurant where they usually eat lunch, to see if I might be able to purchase it in bulk through his supplier. I hope that pans out. It's such a heavy item, shipping it is cost prohibitive.
Staying on track, I cleaned another drawer in the kitchen island, a catch all or junk drawer.. I was embarrassed to find a few Christmas cards from 10 years ago, which means it hadn't been totally cleaned since we moved in the house. It often houses garden catalogs, and those had been removed, but not the other items. I started to beat myself up about it, then decided to pat my back for doing it now. The chickens continue to lay well, and I was able to share a dozen with a friend. While there, she gave me a beautiful piece of jewelry a local artist made, one that was her Mom's, but not her style. While walking to the chickens, I noticed two lettuce plants in an area we planted last spring, which hadn't been there before. I transplanted them with the other lettuce, so they could be covered with row cover on cold nights. A pan of dried egg shells was crushed, to be added to the compost bin.
The parsley I dug and brought into the house seems to be thriving. We had a bit of a warm spell, with highs in the 60's. As it wasn't supposed to last long, and I had a bit of cabin fever, I cleaned up one of the flower beds. Three heaping wheelbarrow fulls of prunings and downed sticks were dumped at the edge of our woods. It's a start. Needing to use the squash we grew last year, I cut up three butternut squash, and two spaghetti squash. I baked a butternut squash crumble with half, and froze the remainder. J ate some spaghetti squash, and the remainder was frozen. I checked on the garlic, and it's coming along nicely, with more than half up now. While doing that, I walked past the asparagus bed, which reminded me that should be the next bed cleaned up. Always plenty to do around here, that's for sure.
We bought postage stamps before the price went up, both for J's business and our personal use. Between dropping off soap, and meeting a friend, I had a few minutes, and went into a nearby thrift store. My computer monitor, which was bought used around 8 years ago, was starting to act up. I had been looking online, but found one there for $10, which works great. I've been wanting to work on organizing the bathroom closet. It's one of the things I would have designed differently, in hindsight, as it's a narrow, deep closet, so difficult to get to things. I found a long thin basket with handles for $2, which corralled a good amount of things. I still need one more basket to get it finished, but there's progress. Several things were thrown away, and a small bag of things, such as samples I've never used, will be donated. Are you cleaning and decluttering too? I've read there's a big uptick in thrift store donations, due to Marie Kondo. Have a great week, friends.
Monday, January 21, 2019
Hello, friends. Last week, I learned teeny, tiny chicken eggs are called fairy eggs. For a dinner, I made a pasta meal, which used our canned tomatoes and summer squash, and fresh rosemary. I pulled our frozen okra out of the freezer for a dinner, and made kale salad with our kale, to have with leftover quiche. I sent another email to swagbucks, as points from our vacation in September have still not been credited. After an out of town appointment, I went by a nearby Trader Joe's and Whole Foods. The majority of what I bought was fruits and vegetables, as J is needing quite a bit to start on his allergy protocol. I had hoped to find it all at TJ's, but there were several things I had to buy at Whole Foods. Happily, I found out at my appointment that eggs are OK on occasion for me. Whew! On my way to the appointment, I dropped off an order at the Fedex site.
On Wednesday, the last part came, J hooked it up, and we had water at the kitchen faucet again. Hooray! I paid our propane bill online to save a stamp, and in time to get a discount, saving $3.04. Two dozen eggs were shared. I froze homemade bread that we weren't going to eat right now. Several more sweet potatoes were dehydrated for pup treats. I picked ones that had bad spots, so what was good could still be used. The ugly bits went into the compost. Eggs have been gathered from the chickens daily. Ziploc bags were washed for reuse. Candles were used most nights while eating dinner. I sold two items on ebay. Not much, but every little bit helps. I'm staying on track, doing small kitchen chores while waiting. One of the crispers was cleaned, and a bit more of the fridge wiped down. Having been inspired by these small changes, I cleaned and organized another kitchen drawer.
I pulled another box of my friend's antiques from the shed, this time metal items. I worked on three items to list on ebay, and got everything done except figuring shipping, which I plan to do on Saturday, and list them on Sunday. A few paperwork and tax chores were crossed off the to do list. One item was mended. My sister and I met for dinner. Nothing frugal there, other than we both brought home leftovers. It's just wonderful to spend time together. I've been having pain in one of my feet, and learning about foot health. I first heard a podcast with Katy Bowman, then found one of her books in the library. One thing I've learned is that you want a toe box that is big enough for your toes to fit comfortably, not squished. Just stopping using some of my footwear has already made a big change in how my foot feels. I really needed something better to hike in, and ordered a pair of $200 boots that between their markdown and a 20% off code, were $40, with free shipping and returns. I really hope they work well. I've begun doing some of the exercises too. Here's to healthy feet, and remaining mobile for many more years.
There have been a few signs that spring is coming. I've noticed leaf buds on a number of plants, and saw several daffodil buds this week. The broom by the road has begun blooming. The next two nights will be in the teens, so I expect that will slow things down a bit. I did get to list the items on ebay. I assisted J in working on our new painting system, and we finished it Saturday evening. On Sunday, we painted 6 orders, and all came out well. This will be a major improvement for our little business. I hope all those affected by the winter storms are staying safe and warm. Be well, friends.
Monday, January 14, 2019
|mini egg with chicken gifts from a friend|
After work in town, I picked up library books. At Walgreens, I used a $1.25 coupon for Kleenex, got leggings marked down to $2.99 and half gallons of 100% juice 2/$5, found wrapping paper I could use all year at 70% off, used a $5 reward, and received another $7 in rewards. Gathering eggs one day, I found the smallest chicken egg I've ever seen. It was 1 1/8" long, and the cutest thing. I suppose it was one of our youngest chickens first egg, but not sure. Two more items were listed on ebay. I did all the preliminary stuff... cleaning, photos, research, then figured shipping for a third item, but it came up as $50 shipping (!), so I'll need to see if I can figure out if any smaller box will work. Otherwise, it will be donated. Most of these items are glass, and either vintage or antique, so I pack them really well for shipping, which adds to the bulk. Trying to come up with boxes that are in such a wide variety of shapes and sizes is sometimes challenging. Update: I did find a smaller box, which also weighed less, and shipping now comes in at about $20. Still may be too high to sell, but it's worth a try.
With J's initial dietary changes, yeast bread is off the list. I found a recipe for naan without yeast, which was decent. We enjoyed it with vegetable soup, which used jars of our tomatoes, vegetable broth, summer squash, and frozen okra, along with other pantry items. With temps going into the low 20's, I harvested some carrots, kale, three rutabagas, collards and parsley. I also dug up two parsley, potted them and brought them in the house to see if I could continue to harvest them indoors these next few months. I recently came up with an idea that is working well for me. There are a few kitchen chores, like bringing eggs to a boil, and heating milk to temp for yogurt that require me to not stray far. I've decided during these times, I'd pick a small cleaning/reorganizing/decluttering chore to do. So far, I've cleaned a kitchen drawer, which now opens easily again... imagine that, and the drawer at the bottom of my stove. While it was out, I vacuumed underneath the stove, which is an area that doesn't get near enough attention. It feels good to be accomplishing these little bits.
Sunday, January 6, 2019
Hello, friends. Here's to a fresh new year, full of joy, peace and harmony. On New Years Eve, I cooked two of our bags of okra. I tried a new recipe for sweet & spicy cauliflower, as I'd recently had some that was wonderful. This recipe wasn't quite there, but I have two more recipes to try. On New Years Day, I harvested collards, and prepared them along with black eyed peas. I hadn't ground any corn, so we had sweet potatoes instead of the traditional cornbread. We had a couple of warm days in the upper 60's. We didn't need heat one night, and opened windows for fresh air. While the wood stove was cooled off, J took advantage, and cleaned it and the stovepipe out. I had gone to Big Lots with a $10 off $50 coupon, hoping to stock up on olive oil for soap making. They did not have what I needed, so I bought one bottle of olive oil and a jar of olives. I went across the road to Aldi's, and got a better deal on olive oil. I typically buy tins of olive oil, but have not found any sales this year, and used up all I had stocked up.
Laundry was dried on the line. Hand washed clothing was caught up, and hung on the line. Needing to replenish a supplement, I took advantage of a 15% off sale, and went through ebates for an additional 6%. I made lentil soup, using one of the jars of lentils I recently canned. Salad was made to go along, as well as bread, which used the last of the wheat I had ground. The bread was an oops, as J is trying some changes to relieve his allergies, and yeast is a no no right now. It's a little interesting, with the dietary changes we're both trying to adhere to, but hopefully, it will be worth it in the long run. All veggie scraps were added to the broth bag. I used the wood stove to help melt oils for soap making, and to make suet for the birds. I received an offer on amazon to do a review of an item I recently purchased, for a $3 gift card. I received the GC the next day. I'm missing points on swagbucks, and wrote them again, at the 90 day mark, as they requested. Hopefully, the third time will be the charm.
|mended tear in a nightgown|