Monday, March 21, 2016

The Awakening of Spring and Frugal Accomplishments

pear blossoms
I'm joining in with Brandy's Frugal Accomplishments.  Last week, I did laundry with homemade soap and hung it on the line to dry.  Made kefir and yogurt.  I brought kefir grains to share at our Ladies Homestead Gathering meeting, and also seeds of orlaya, kale, collards, basil, okra and Hopi Grey squash.  There was a talk on tea from Carriage House Tea, and we each received a sample to take home.  I cleaned and weeded 3 flower beds along the drive, and gathered chickweed for the chickens and pups. Saved 4 Ice Brix freezer gel bags that came with something J ordered, & put them in the freezer to reuse.  I tried a method of pre-sprouting seeds I had read about, but it's not working well.  I believe the challenge is instead of reusing a plastic cupcake holder as she did, I'm using a cardboard egg carton.  Even with misting them several times a day, the paper towels holding the seeds keep drying out.  Next time, I may try lining the carton with plastic.


Wednesday was the anniversary of the day Guinness came to live with us.  In honor of that I suppose, he found some good stinky stuff to get into.  I washed him down with my Sirius dog shampoo bar as soon as he came in the door, and I caught a whiff of him.  That dog just loves him some stinky stuff!  I continue to work on stripping the paint off the posts.  I purchased rennet and enzymes for cheese making & am waiting for my order to arrive.  I've made ricotta before, but want to try some other simple cheeses.  We've had some temperatures in the 80's.  On those days, I opened blinds only enough for the house plants to get light, & kept the south facing door closed until the evening, to keep the house cooler.   I found a four leaf clover in the yard, and gave it to J for luck on a day that was challenging. Interestingly, it did seem that things turned for the better after that.

I found a volunteer grape hyacinth in the lawn, and transplanted it.  Cut up some fruit for breakfast, and added a spoon of homemade yogurt to the top, along with a sprinkling of homemade granola.  After spending several hundred dollars on our riding mower the past few years, which was a used mower given to us, J decided to purchase a new one.  I checked on ebates, & they were giving better than usual points for this store, so he decided to join, saving almost $60 on this purchase, & I'll get a referral fee.  In cleaning up a sedum bed, there were several stalks I pulled out that had a few leaves still attached to the bottom.  I transplanted these in a few places.  I raked the leaves off of two flower beds, which we will put in the garden.  Emptied water bottles and tumblers into the wood stove humidifier. I won't be able to do that much longer, as the days of wood fires will soon be coming to a close.

I prepared pasta with our tomatoes, garlic & herbs.  Chopped the parsley and oregano stems for the pups dinner.  Tore up toilet paper tubes, and added them to the compost crock.  Brought meals, water and tea when I worked away from home.  I'm still enjoying blooms on the orchid that I bought at Aldi's just before Valentines Day.  Though I can't say it was frugal for me, I gathered wild flowers  and plant sprigs to display at a pottery gallery I was working at.  I placed the vase where they greeted customers as they came in the door, and they cheered me while I was there.  Borrowed a book from the library.  I found a couple of cracked eggs this week, which I gave to the pups.  I'm not sure if it has to do with a hen that has been broody, but it seems so.  She has been moving around to different nest boxes.  We've never finished the area we intended for this purpose. Once we do, her only choice will be to sit on the eggs in her nest.

I made lentil soup, using one of our potatoes and homemade broth.  Went through ebates for cash back on purchases for our porch project.  Made my Swagbucks goal a couple of days.  It's been more difficult to make goal since the first of the year, so most days I only do the basics, and sometimes a few searches.  I typically check there and on ebates whenever I'm making an online purchase, and go with whoever is offering the better deal.  The one friend I referred to Swagbucks got his own computer a few months ago, and I've not gotten a referral point since.  Go figure.  Our third blight resistant pear arrived, and J & I planted it.  One side of the chicken yard had sprouted a good amount of oats, so I let them into that side, and resowed the other side in oats.  Walked with pups every day.  J took us out for a lovely dinner for the anniversary of our first date.  I brought home leftovers, & brought them for lunch when I worked.

peach blossoms
When I picked up an order at Lowe's, I questioned if a portion of the order which looked like one item was the 2 items I ordered, & was told yes.  Not surprisingly, when I got home, J said it was not all of it, so I went back to the store when I was in town working to get the remaining item.  I then had to reorder the same items due to a change in construction plans, and they tried to pull the same thing again.  Got to stay vigilant.  I made omelets with our eggs and asparagus.  This was last year's asparagus, but they're already poking up this year, so I'll begin harvesting some tomorrow.  I made my grandmother's Irish soda bread with one of our eggs, which seemed fitting this week of St. Patrick's Day.  I hope yours has been a good one.  Happy Spring, friends!

No comments: