Sunday, November 29, 2020

Weekly Wrap-Up 11/29

 Good morning my friends.  I surely hope this finds you well and safe.
Hard to believe that this is the last Sunday in November (boy it flew by) and that we have 4 weeks to prepare for Christmas.  Five weeks and we start a new year!   My goodness.

I hope that all in the U.S. had a great Thanksgiving.  Mine was different, but nice and quiet.  I guess that is the only constant in the world - things change!!!!!  We can always be sure of that.

We have  had a couple pretty, sunny and semi decent days.  Love seeing the sunshine - it sure is a mood lifter.  This coming week is supposed to be colder and they have even thrown around that nasty four letter S word!!!!!!.  It looks like my area may get a few flurries or a dusting - but that is about it (I hope). 
So December will be coming in more seasonal than November has been.  Ba-Humbug!  LOL
I look forward to the daylight hours to start getting longer instead of shorter - after winter solstice!

My week:
  • Did a ton of paperwork - paid all bills I had in house, balanced checkbook (ugh), and filed away lots of papers
  • Received and wrote a snail mail letter
  • Did all the usual - laundry, vacuum, dust, and cleaned inside windows, mirrors and glass
  • Got the other rain barrel drained and put away
  • Final rake of the season
  • I fixed a downspout I had that was leaking
  • Put up my (few) Christmas decorations inside and placed wreaths, mailbox cover, Christmas flag, and pots of fake poinsettia's out front.
My lantern, tiny little tree and Tiffany like turtle (red light).  The little turtle is festive in color.  I have more things around the house - but this is my little tree area.
  • I baked a turkey breast, a tiny chunk of ham, baked a pan of mac n cheese.  Made a peach cheesecake and made brownies.  I wanted something crunchy on top of mac and had no dried onions or corn flakes - so I ground up some Cheetos and topped it.  Cheese and more cheese!!!  Yum.
  • Ended up with a pint of broth from the turkey pan and then cooked the bones down and ended up with 3 quarts more for the freezer.
Richness  and goodness straight from the turkey pan.  The picture doesn't do it justice - it was golden!
  • Went to the feed store and did a big stock up of critter goodies to last past the end of the year.  Got the best ear corn I have seen in ages - the ears are HUGE
  • Got my holiday cards out and ready to address
  • Got to share my Thanksgiving food with a couple of neighbors and a friend.  They were pleased.
  • NO shopping - grocery or gifts

My meals this past week:
Bean/rice leftover and scrambled eggs
Cheesy beef and rice/bean topped with chopped tomatoes
Sausage gravy over toast
Chili (from freezer) smothered brats (open face sandwich)
Turkey, mac n cheese and dessert
Ham, mac n cheese, slaw and sliced tomatoes - dessert
Ham, turkey and mac - dessert

Got to talk with lots of family this week - which is always nice.  It really has been a pretty quiet week.  Last night I slept better than I have in months! (I don't ever sleep well -- never straight through).
I have totally been enjoying the sunshine we have had the past couple days.  Some days it is just those little things that make a difference.
Today I am going to make some turkey and noodles - just sounds comforting.  That is what winter is all about!  

How was your week?  Did you get any deals or do any holiday shopping?  Any crafting?
Baking?  How are you stretching those leftovers?    

May you and yours have a wonderful week.  Let us know what you are doing to get ready for Christmas!
Blessings from my humble little home to yours.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own insight.  In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths.
Proverbs 3:5-6


Friday, November 27, 2020

Friday Chit-Chat

 Good morning all.  I hope all of you U.S. folks had a great Thanksgiving.  Many may be having it today or tomorrow.  It doesn't matter.  We should be thankful each and every day for WHAT we have and WHO we have in our lives.  I understand we are celebrating the 'first' gathering - but we can be thankful for our ancestors every day.  Without my ancestors coming here and going through all they did (and surviving) I wouldn't be here.  One little change could have made a difference on my existence.

Lots of leftovers here.  I have a friend stopping by today for lunch and we will use some of those leftovers up.  Then I will find new ways to remake them or maybe some will be frozen. 
I watched Charlie Brown's Thanksgiving last evening!!  I had pre-recorded it last weekend and I watched it for the first time in years!   So sweet and such a good message behind it!
Debbie in KS I watched Michael West's - Gobble Gobble - You Tube video.  That was cute!

No shopping going on here.  I have no desire.  It is amazing to see as I am watching the news this morning - that 'perhaps' people are actually listening a bit this year.  It looks like the numbers of people at the stores is quit small compared to past years for Black Friday.
I have never been an on-line shopper - doubtful I will start this year.  Most are getting goody baskets - things I make, can or special items from grocery.  Other than that - money will be gifted.  I have the littles all done - so teens will get some personal likes/goodies (treats and snacks) and $$.
I was talking to one of my nieces last night and she said she started my 'tradition' of goody baskets with her oldest and is giving just a couple things to younger (teen) children and then money.

This is my newest 'child' Blackie.  He showed up several months back and wouldn't even get close to me or anyone.  I slowly set and bribed him with goodies and now he LOVES me!  He hangs here pretty much all the time now.  He even defends the the yard from unknown kitties!   He gets along pretty well with Momma and Fluffy.  Fluff isn't all convinced about him yet - but she abides him.
I walk outside, and as soon as he hears me open the gate - he comes running to Mom!!  

It is going to get cold this coming week - so planning on finishing up some needed to do items outside this weekend.  It will be a good time for people in my area to finish up any outside decorations - because it is going to way chilly next week. (highs at freezing or below for a few days).

If you are so inclined to shop this weekend - please remember tomorrow is SHOP SMALL Saturday.  Shop those small business instead of the big box stores.  You can get such wonderful and different items.  You may also be helping to put a meal on their table instead of getting some CEO richer!  I doubt I go out tomorrow - but I do plan on stopping in a couple small businesses in the little burg up the road in the coming days.  They look interesting and I may find something I 'can't live without'!
Small businesses have taken such a hit this year - please do what you can to help!

I do need to go to the feed store tomorrow and get stocked up for the remainder of the year.  I am usually in and out in a few minutes.  Got to keep my critters fed!

Seeing a bit of sunshine at the moment!!  YAY - it has been a few days.  That can sure change my attitude and mood.

Well gang, I am off for now.  I will be back Sunday with the weekly wrap-up.  Have a great weekend and stay safe if shopping.  Eat up all those leftovers and stay frugal.

Wednesday, November 25, 2020


 Wishing you all well!  Be safe and healthy.  Travel mercies for those traveling some where.  
I am so very thankful for each of you! 

Blessings to each of you and yours on Thanksgiving and every day!

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Food Waste - So Many Consequences

Wasting food is such  a huge problem world wide.  I don't understand why people so easily throw good nutritious food away.
It is SINFUL in my eyes.  It wastes MONEY.  People are going HUNGRY all over.  It wastes RESOURCES.  It is just so wrong.

I know people who refuse to eat leftovers.  My advice - go hungry then!  I know that sounds cruel, but it is crazy.  Remake it into something else.  
Make soup, casseroles, wraps, pizza, quiche............etc..  You can mask it if you try.  Breakfasts, lunches, suppers.  Sandwiches or snacks.

I know so much food will be wasted after this Thanksgiving Day holiday.  I actually have known people who through the turkey away the day after (regardless to how much meat is left).  Aaaacckkkkk!!!  Good grief - I boil the bones!

Give food to another family member or a neighbor.  There are homeless people that would love a sandwich or a tray.  Freeze it for later on.  If nothing else - feed your livestock.  (much of people food is not good for house pets).  Just DON'T throw it away.

Not only does it waste food - when so many are hungry, but it is wasting money.  If you are that eager to throw money away, go out to a parking lot and just throw cash about!!!!!!  At least it would benefit someone.
It is also a huge waste of resources!!!  People don't seem to think about this.  It took farmers from all over giving of their time and work, animals and veggies being raised and fed, someone to harvest, someone to clean and package it, someone to transport, someone to stock shelves and someone to sell it.   Soooooo many wasted resources when you simply throw it away.  
That is disgusting and just plain wrong.
We should be thankful for those farmers and truck drivers and stores for providing us nourishment.

Throw your leftovers in the trash - in many big cities the trash trucks come and get it.  They pack those trucks full - then off to the landfill/dump.  Hundreds of trucks of trash a week are dumped.  That compacts much of the trash down - where even wildlife (birds mainly) can't get to it.  
All that packing causes gases to be made.  Methane gas if made when food items are cut off from oxygen.  Methane is horrible - that is what many call greenhouse gas.
If nothing else compost all you can at home - at least that is beneficial to your food system in the long run.

So before your waste - THINK and PLAN:
  • Cook a little less
  • Have a plan for leftovers - eat as is, re-invent, freeze, or share
  • Use small plates - less likely for people to take food they won't eat (they can get seconds if needed)
  • Shop from your shelves - instead of buying more
  • Plan, plan, plan and be mindful
Just to give you an idea - I recently read that it is estimated that 200 million pounds of turkey alone is throw out after Thanksgiving in America!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  DISGRACEFUL!!

This isn't just a Thanksgiving or Christmas problem - waste is an every day problem.  Please be mindful of your food, your resources and your money.

Many blessings to you and yours my friends.  Enjoy a safe, healthy and mindful holiday!

Sunday, November 22, 2020

Weekly Wrap-Up 11/22

 Good morning all.  Hoping this finds you all well and safe.
All is fine here.  It is a dark, wet and chilly morning.
We have had another  full cycle of weather again this week - well, all but snow!  Warm weather and got to open windows, strong winds - was watching for a house and little dog to fly by (LOL) - rain, we should be catching up from drought, and cold - had to plug in outdoor water bowls.

Critters were all hungry.  The little birds were very thankful to have the water bowls not frozen!  It is funny, I don't see them at the birdbath often - unless it is very cold.
I saw a red-winged black bird eating in the yard this week.  Unusual, as I usually only see them in spring and early summer.  Must have been heading southwards.

It seemed to be the week of  'one thing leads to another'.  Every project I did led to another,  It didn't seem anything was just simple.

THIS is a picture of love, contentment and happiness!  My sweet little cuddle bug - Coogy.  May your week be this relaxing!

My week:
  • My neighbor brought me some candy and a pumpkin roll - what a nice surprise
  • Made a batch of corn muffins that lasted a few meals and froze some
  • The light company sent out someone to replace my house meter (garage one already replaced).  It is supposed to more accurate.  The worker walked out back and just stopped and was saying nothing.  I asked if all was OK and he said "I have never seen squirrels come so close to people.  That is amazing!  It ran right up to you."  I then showed him how I feed them nuts by hand.  He thought that was just the coolest thing he had ever seen.  Then he said "look it is waving at us".  It sure did look like it.  LOL!   I got a new more accurate meter and he got a story to tell all day!
  • I wasn't going out - but ran to Aldi.  I got butter 1.79/lb. (no limit), fresh potatoes were 1.89/10 lbs. and I got a gift card and some small items for gifts.  In and out in about 20 minutes.  They were completely and well stocked and only limits was on TP - 2 packs.
  • I raked leaves again.  I did the leaves that collected in a part of the drive up by house
  • Emptied and put away 1 rain barrel.  One more to go
  • Working on the bedroom pantry - I am working on re-arranging and organizing.  I will be adding a curtain as well
  • Been working on de-cluttering and deep cleaning again.  That is where one thing leads to another!
  • Normal stuff - laundry, cleaning, using what I have, cooking from scratch (making simple meals), made carbonated fruit water, reading
  • Got to open windows and turn off heat on 2 days
  • Renewed library books on-line
Meals this past week: Simple but yummy
Cheesy mac with broccoli and cherry tomatoes added and tuna on the side
Complete meal tostado - cheese, taco meat, mac n cheese and slaw all on a tostada
Mixed greens with ham chunks and corn muffins (best bite I have had in ages)
Leftover greens, fried potato and corn muffin
Homemade pizza
Leftover pizza and salad
Homemade beans and rice and brats and corn muffin
Mac with cheese and added broccoli and halved cherry tomatoes

Tostada meal - shell, shredded cheese, taco meat, mac n cheese, homemade slaw and ranch dressing
Mixed greens with ham chunks and  corn muffins - honestly the best meal in ages.  It sure hit the spot!
Pizza using what I had on hand, made crust, sauce, sausage, pepperoni, peppers, olives, onion, sliced Roma tomatoes and cheese - my goodness it was tasty!
Homemade rice (spiced up) and red beans.  Leftover muffin and cheesy brats.

No meal this week probably cost more than a couple dollars and some like greens, mac and pizza cost a lot less than that PER meal!  I loved it all and I used what I have and re-invented a couple things in new ways.  Keeping it simple!

How was your week?  Are you all ready for Thanksgiving?  I think I am staying home and having a friend and a neighbor come by to eat.  I will take something to another neighbor as well - she is battling cancer and treatments.
Did you get any of the great deals being offered?  There sure are some good sales.

May you and yours stay healthy and safe.  
Blessings from my humble little home to yours.

This is the day which the Lord has made;  let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalms 118:24

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Turkey Day Memories

Today I want to put a couple memories of Thanksgiving Days past out there.  I know we all have special memories of different days.

My Mom would bake so many goodies - pies and cakes and homemade yeast rolls. Her rolls were so good.  The turkey was always cooked during the over night.  No cooking bags back then!
It was all you could do - to sleep!!!  The house smelled so incredible.  
She made two types of dressing.  Regular and oyster (ick).  My Dad and brothers and even Glen liked the oyster dressing - oh my I just couldn't stomach that.
I still use some of Mom's recipes for special items and even her grand daughter's do.  Her special dishes are still around.

I think just about everyone came home to Mom and Dad's on Thanksgiving.  They may not have stayed long - but everyone stopped by for a visit and a goody.
We had people in the kitchen, the dining room and the living room.  If nice out - people even used the front porch.  I remember people even sitting on the steps going upstairs.
The house wasn't big - but it sure was full of love.

I remember one year when I was around 8 or 9, Mom had pretty extreme back surgery and had to wear a body cast - hips to underarms.  That thing was massive back then.  Dad decided he would fix Thanksgiving dinner.  His biggest job was the turkey.
I remember him carving up the turkey (which looked lovely) and he found the giblet packet inside!!!!!  Mom was mortified and Daddy thought it was hilarious (as did everyone else).
That was talked about for years and Daddy never got turkey duty again!!!!!!

We had Thanksgiving for everyone a few times here in our little home ( to give Mom some relief).  It was wall to wall people.  Luckily the years we had it, the weather was decent and we got to ship kids outside to play some!  
The last year I did a BIG T-day, was unbelievable.  I had a big ham, turkey and turkey breast, 10 lbs. of potatoes mashed, tons of dressing and green beans and desserts out the wazoo.  I had tons of people RSVP and went with that.  Well...... a bunch showed up that hadn't RSVP'd and they brought boyfriend/girlfriends and kids.   First time ever in my life that I never had a leftover AT ALL.  They ate everything.  That was the last whole family T-day I had.
We went much smaller every year after that.

My favorite thing about Thanksgiving dinner is having having a cold turkey sandwich the next day.  That is the best!!!!  I look so forward to that simple little thing.

I sure do miss those days.  Mom, Dad, sis and brother, in-laws that are gone and of course Glen - it was precious. I am glad I can sit and remember.  What a gift!

Life sure goes by quickly.  You turn your head and years seem to fly by.
I truly love being able to live those days over and over in my head.

Do you have any favorite memories of Thanksgivings past?  Any funny happenings - or mishaps?
Please share.  I love reading everyone's stories.
Have a great weekend!


Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Frugal Feast - Don't Fret - It's Possible

 Here we are at the holiday season again.  Next week is Thanksgiving here in the U.S.  A feast is always anticipated.  WHY?  
Should we not be thankful everyday for what we have and celebrate each and every day that God has given us?  YES

This year many families are staying home and just having a simpler version of the holiday.  Many folks have been short on money for months and may not have the funds to do a big spread.  That is OK!!!!!!!
A feast can be anything - especially if you are sharing with someone you care about.

In the U.S. turkeys are like stupid cheap right now.  Frozen turkey can be purchased just about every where for .31 - .39 a pound!  You can't get anything else that cheap.
BUT if you can't shop or have no funds to shop or choose to just stay in - have something else!

You can have turkey, ham, chicken (fixed any way you choose), pork roast, pork chops, beef roast, lasagna, spaghetti, chili, meatloaf (or meatloaf burgers*), fish...........................etc..
Shoot fire and save matches - you can have a grilled cheese and tomato soup or a bologna sandwich.  Have whatever you have on hand and BE THANKFUL!

You can even get a bit creative with store bought pre-packaged foods (many can be purchased for little $ right now with sales or even purchased at the Dollar Tree).

Here's a simple idea using inexpensive food and jazzing it up a little.  Stuffing mix - add a can or 2 of chicken meat and a can of cream of chicken soup and a little water or milk.  Bake or heat on stove for a great side with meat added.  Potatoes - add some sour cream or extra cheese or even cream cheese.  Green beans - season up and go.  Have one of those little hams - bake it up with a little OJ over it or some peach jam - spiff it up.

Make your own stuffing - dry up some bread chucks (any kind) add in celery and onion (or celery seed if no fresh) - broth and/or cream of celery or chicken soup.  I always add an egg.  Super easy to make - bake until heated through and lightly browned on top.  Super frugal!!

*Meatloaf burgers (mentioned above).  Mix up your normal meatloaf and make burger patties out of it and fry.  No need for an oven and these taste just like meatloaf.  Easy and yummy.

I am not a big cranberry sauce fan - but I LOVE mixing whole berry sauce with mandarin orange slices (slightly drained - keep juice for other uses) and throw in a big handful of chopped walnuts or pecans.  YUM!  I also like whole berry sauce mixed with applesauce - it is such a good treat.  You could use as a salad or a dessert.
Cranberry sauce added to apples for a pie or crisp is super yummy too.  Sweet and tart.

Have potatoes?  Potatoes are super cheap right now.  Our Aldi has them for 1.89 for 10 lbs. and some places are cheaper.  10 lbs. of potatoes can go a long way!!!!  Cook up 2 or 3 and make yummy and comforting mashed potatoes (for a couple people).  Twice baked potatoes.  Fried, baked, smothered, potato soup, hash browns..........................breakfast, lunch and super!

SO - you aren't doing any special shopping or can't - OK.  Check your pantries and your freezers and add a little imagination to the mix and you can have a SUPER FRUGAL FEAST!!!!!

If you do shop - there are crazy wicked good deals going on right now.  Stock up on what you can and be prepared for the winter months ahead.

Remember to be thankful EVERY DAY for all you have.  What you have in your pantry or freezer could be an absolute miracle to another family.  IF you have the opportunity to help a family that is down and out this season - please do.
God bless you all.