Monday, January 11, 2016

Feathered Friends and Frugal Accomplishments

woodpecker on the suet feeder
I'm joining in with Brandy's Frugal Accomplishments today. There were small amounts of black eyed peas, collards & rice, and sweet potatoes left over from New Years Day, and baby bella mushrooms from another day.  I used the peas, collards & rice, and mushrooms in a vegetable soup, along with our tomatoes, okra, carrots and garlic (also store bought corn and onions).  With the sweet potatoes, I made biscuits from a recipe a friend shared, substituting homemade kefir for the buttermilk.  I made yogurt and kefir.  Purchased label paper for my soap with a 20% coupon code and another 2% going through Swagbucks.

Boiled eggs and fed to the pups.  I researched a bit on that today, as I'd recently read of a blogger who gave her dogs 12 eggs a day.  She did not say how many dogs she had in the post, so I don't know how many they were getting each.  Some of the info today said raw eggs were preferable, and other info said boiled was better.  A couple of vets have told me that cholesterol is not an issue with dogs, but I'll have to ask about the raw vs cooked debate, and the number of eggs recommended.  Being able to cut back on bought food would be nice,  I added the egg shells to a pan to dry.  When I get enough, I crush them and add to the compost.

coop cleaning
Harvested carrots and grated them for the pups.  Got an Amazon gift card with Swagbucks points.  I was gifted 3 sturdy baskets.  I can find lots of uses for a good basket, especially during garden season.  Walked with the pups for exercise.  I've been enjoying some library books and videos.  Made french toast with the last of the bakery bread and our eggs, and added bread ends to a pan for bread crumbs.  Prepared brussels sprouts with our garlic.  Picked chickweed, dandelion greens and comfrey for the chickens.  Did a load of laundry with homemade soap and hung it on the line.  Hung 2 cashmere sweaters near the woodstove.  Used the woodstove to help melt the oils when making a batch of soap.

patiently waiting
I enjoyed watching the Call the Midwife Christmas special online, which I learned about in the Frugal Accomplishments community.  Shopped at the discount grocery store, & got several lbs. of various shaped wholegrain pasta for .75/box and an assortment of band aids and bandages with varying prices.  I went by the Salvation Army store, and got 2 short sleeved shirts for 1/2 price (1.50 & 2.00).  Composted fruit and vegi scraps.  Swept a couple of times instead of vacuuming (we have all wood floors and area rugs).    Washed baggies for reuse.  I searched for and used a coupon code to purchase a doorknob for the studio.

I gathered potatoes... we have them on the ground at the woods edge covered with pine straw and tin, which has worked well for us... they are sprinkled with lime to discourage insects.  Prepared colcannon with our potatoes and a store bought cabbage.  We have a few cabbage plants, but they are not big enough to harvest.  Gave the chickens an apple that turned brown and grated cauliflower stems and leaves for the pups dinner.  Also gave them a bit of leftover cranberry sauce.  I hung laundry on the line one afternoon, as the next day had only a 20% chance of rain, but it pretty much rained or misted all day, so I had to bring the laundry in and dry in the dryer, except the wool items which I hung in various places.  Sometimes I just do my best, and am thankful for a dryer to use as needed.

my coop cleaning buddy
I made apple, zucchini, carrot bread with our carrots, zucchini and eggs.  Cleaning the chicken coop is one of the less glamorous homestead jobs, but it must be done.  I removed 4 cart loads of poopy straw, which was added to the compost pile, and put a good layer of fresh straw on the floor and in the nest boxes.  Some colder weather is expected, so they should be in good shape now.


Suzie Simplelife said...

Some great frugal accomplishments've been very busy. I occasionally give my dogs a raw egg each when I have excess. They love them.

Anonymous said...

It looks like you got a lot done this past week! The difference between where you live and where I live in western Oregon is amazing. I couldn't leave my potatoes outside (if I had grown any) because they would have frozen in our recent cold snap. I had some onions curing on screens and we had to hustle to bring them into the shop so they wouldn't freeze.

Laurie said...

I got some egg answers from the vet today, Suzie. I'll share what he said in the next post.

Becky, we've had nights in the low 20's, but so far, the potatoes are doing well, covered as they are.

Thank you both for visiting and commenting!

Angie @ thejunkranch said...

Hey Laurie, I always enjoy reading your posts when I treat myself to a few minutes of reading my favorite blogs. I was interested to learn how you're storing your potatoes. We've never grown many because we don't have a root celler. I did learn this winter that I could leave my fall carrots in the beds with cover like your potatoes. That has worked for us so far. Happy New Year!

Laurie said...

Hi Angie! We also leave our carrots in the ground, which has worked well for us. The potatoes- we just literally put them on the ground in a lightly wooded area, spread them out to single thickness, sprinkle them with agricultural lime to deter bugs (we have lots of roly polys), cover with a 4-6" layer of pine straw, then cover all with tin to keep the rain off. It's a little work to get to them this way, and they do begin sprouting if it's warm, but they last longer than any other way we've tried. Hope this helps!