Thursday, October 21, 2021

Products - Convenience

 We all like convenience and we all need items for our pantry.  I know many have gotten into having groceries delivered.  I still have not tried that - I like to pick out my goods - especially fresh items.  I understand it though.  Some items I have ordered online over the years and it is nice.  There are just things that I can not find locally.  I am sure we have all dealt with that.

I like the company Spices, Etc.  It sells all kinds of spices and herbs - some that I had never heard of before.  They also have extracts, many hard to find ones - and they have powders of all sorts.  There is powdered cheeses, butter, vanilla, honey, soy sauce, buttermilk, vinegar - things you never imagine being powdered.
I have purchased many extract flavorings and many powders over the years.
So much to choose from.


Click on picture to enlarge viewing.  Shows some of the powders.  
Now this company isn't super cheap - but you can sure find things that you can't find most places.  Every time I get a sale flier I am amazed at the different products.  Lots of unusual items that would be neat gifts as well.
Check them out online!

I mentioned this in a post a while back and someone was interested.  Instead of buying a big box of Velveeta that may not get used before going stale - these individual packs of Velveeta.  $1 at the Dollar Tree.  They are nice to have in the pantry.

OK I know many would never think about eating Spam - but I like it.  It isn't the best food - but it is tasty.  This is a smaller version of off brand at Dollar Tree.  $1.  A regular can is too much for 1 person and I end of freezing some.  This is about the right size - I cut in 4 slices.   It really is tasty.
I know there are many that would not have this in their homes and that is OK.  Others just like some now and then.
I have many canned meat products in my pantry for the if IT happens!

I love these!  They are a little larger than a hotdog and are so good.  Great cut up in potatoes or beans or cabbage or anything!  Makes a super sandwich.  I buy these when on sale - usually 2 packs/$5 or 2 packs/$6.  I can get anywhere from 3 to 6 meals from a pack - depending on what I am making.  Not a bad price for meat for a meal - .50 or less.
You can get regular, cheese added and even jalapeno.  They are so good.  I love smoked sausage.

So there you go - a few convenience foods and a new place to buy unusual items.
Have a great day!

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

IF - Just One Thing

 I read something yesterday that just hit me.  I have known it my whole life and have spoken of it - but seeing this in black and white, kinds of hit me.  WHAT IF?  Just ONE thing had been different?

I know for me this is so true.  So many exceptional tiny moments made it possible for me to be here today.

The fact that you are here is actually a miracle.  So many things had to align just right.
How much heartache our ancestors had to live and see.  Wars, the great depression, sickness, traveling from other lands, traveling cross country, famines, no work, dust storms, droughts, blizzards, etc.
If just ONE of those people hadn't been involved - you wouldn't be here.

I had family come across the seas on both sides of my family.  Had they not - they would not have met up with their spouses.  My paternal grandfather fathered my Daddy, then he he passed in 1918 of the flu.  Daddy lived in southern part of state and by chance came to the city for a job opportunity and met Mom at her job after she had gotten out of a bad (young love - 16) marriage.
SO many moments in time had to be right.

I guess my point is YOU ARE SPECIAL!  Just like every snowflake, flower, leaf, animal and grain of sand - you are you and you are different from everyone else!!!
Isn't that something????

You are special!  You are loved!  You are worthy!  You are beautiful!  You are perfect!
ALWAYS remember that. Let no one tell you different.

You all know I am a person of faith.  I know not everyone believes as I do.  That is fine. Be you.
To me - there are no accidents.  Each and every thing happens for a reason and not one we are supposed to understand.  The Lord knows you before you are born and He knows when you will leave this world.  He is the Master of all things.
He thought the world needed one of you!

I guess I just needed to say - BE YOU!  Do what you need to do to make your life happy and the world a better place.  You get one shot at this - make it special.  

Love, smile, laugh, give, hope, dream.
Things change, our plans change, our bodies change, our families change, our dreams change, our society changes, our world changes - but YOU continue to be the WONDERFUL YOU that you are.

LIVE GENEROUSLY every day!
Have a blessed day my friends.

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

A Few Kitchen Tips For You or Gifts

 I am busy this week.  Monday was a whirlwind of activity outdoors.  It was beautiful and I worked my poor back into a dither!!!!  Much more of the same today.  Got to get it done when dry and nice.

So a quick post of fun projects for your kitchen - tips for you or for gifting.

No need to spend a fortune on candles and sprays - when you have all you need right there in the pantry!!!

KRISPY TREATS
We all love rice krispy treats - but did you know you can use different cereals?  Corn flakes, chocolate puffed rice, fruity cereal............ whatever you got!  There is NO right way - use different cereals and you may be surprised and create a new favorite.

GREEN TOMAOTES AND ZUCCHINI
Did you know that you can slice them a little thicker than normal - lay on a pan and flash freeze and then bag for the freezer?  Pull them out and dip in egg and batter mix and fry WITHOUT thawing.  That is the secret to not having soggy slices!  Nice to have these summer favorites in the winter.

SWEET BREADS
Zucchini, pumpkin, squash, banana, etc.  - jazz it up.  Add different types of chips or nuts before baking (always dust in flour before adding to batter so they don't sink).  Raisins, dried cranberries or any dried fruit can be added.  Make bread or muffins.  Don't get tired of the same old recipes.

CRUSTS
We generally think of graham crackers for cheesecake crust or crust for non-bake pudding pies.  Keep thinking!!!!  Gingersnaps, chocolate wafers, vanilla wafers, any flavor of hard cookie can be used.  How fun and tasty!

POTATO CAKES
Great way to use up those leftover mashed potatoes.  I like to add other stuff as well!  A small can of chicken (drained) or pieces left from dinner, drained corn, cheese, jalapenos......... there is no limit to the add-ins for a different side dish!

POTATO BREAD


No need to run out of bred.  This is tasty and a no yeast type of bread.  We have so many options at our finger tips!!!!!

GOODIES/GIFTS
Think about making chocolate covered apple for yourself or for a special gift for that person who has everything!  Pick nice unblemished apples - add a popsicle stick - then dip in melted chocolate. Can be any type of chocolate - leave as is - or sprinkle with nuts, coconut, sprinkles or colored sugar while wet.  Set on wax paper to dry.  If gifting, place one apple per small candy/cookie gift bags and tie with twine or ribbon.  You can get those little bags at the dollar stores.
Such a fun gift and well - who wouldn't like it?????


Make dipped pretzels as well.  Can be large stick pretzels, regular or bite size pretzels.  Dip and drizzle with another type of chocolate or cover with sprinkles.  

We have tons of inexpensive options for snacks and gift giving.  Don't worry about going out and spending a fortune this holiday.  Go for the homemade route.  Candies, breads, cookies, fudge, salsa, jelly, relishes, mixes - you name it.  We got this!!!
Make a nice down home old time Christmas - and get off of the commercial out-of-control train!

Hope you find something you can use.
Talk to you tomorrow.
Stay well and make busy while you can!

Sunday, October 17, 2021

Weekly Wrap-Up 10/17

 Happy Sunday everyone!  Hope you are well and safe.  Well - fall seems to have finally arrived in my area!  We had rain and more rain this week - and then a cold front BLEW through (it was windy).  Yesterday and today having highs in the 60;s WITH SUN!!!!!!  YAY for sun!  
This morning it was 40* outside - our coldest temp in months and months!  66* in the house.  I just put on layers - no heat yet for me.  Layers, socks and slippers!!!  That did it!
They say this has been the wettest and the warmest October in over a century for our area!  WOW!

Those volunteer tomatoes (cherry) are setting fruit! LOL - Who knows what may happen.  I suppose it will get cold before they ripen.  I have a clematis re-growing and blooming AGAIN this week. No real color yet here - a lot of leaves fell with the rain and wind - but no significant color yet other than green.

Blackie is doing much better.  Pretty much back to his old self.  He is eating good again.  We are done with taking pain meds (stopped after Tues.).  He still isn't doing a lot of dry food unless I moisten it - but he is really eating well.  He is now sleeping the the insulated dog (cat) house.  For some reason he hasn't warmed back up to the greenhouse  to sleep.  At least he is going in there to eat now!  I figure something really startled or scared him in there when he felt bad.  Time will tell.


My week:
  • Started week by cleaning up and out the greenhouse - all swept  and all situated for kitties - sprayed natural flea spray
  • Changed out the comforter on bed - and recently added a throw for extra warmth
  • By chance and LUCK last Saturday I found out the charger for my old cell phone ALSO works on my new phone.  When I went to vet I realized my phone was about dead - and tried the old charger that was in the car.  BOOM it worked!  That is great, as I only got one with this phone - not 2
  • Kitchen faucet became super loose for some reason - got under sink and fixed that
  • Rescued the end of another candle (that I loved) to use in my melt pots
  • I used leftovers in many ways this week.   No waste
  • Stayed home this entire week - no spending
  • Picked 18 lbs. of green tomatoes (only half of plants so far).  Wrapped in paper in basement.  May think about making relish - not sure.  More to pick
  • Used portable dehumidifier water in laundry
  • NO heat or AC this week
  • Made a yummy milkshake with fruit on hand.  Used banana, grapes, OJ, ice and milk.  Super tasty and a nice treat
  • Put together new bottles of dish soap (with vinegar added) and shampoo (just watered down)
  • Used some of my rain water on house plants
  • Washed mirrors and inside of windows
  • Just doing all the same stuff we all do.
Meals this past week:
Chicken strips, potato salad and sliced tomatoes
Taco salad
Broccoli cheese soup (from freezer) and grilled cheese
Chili Mac - used some of leftover taco/bean mixture with added crushed tomatoes over pasta
Open face taco/bean meat sandwich topped with tomato and cheesy potatoes
Cheese potatoes, small fried green tomato (YUM) and smoked sausage
Beef/bean/potato skillet (used all leftovers together) in tortilla wraps
(Froze leftover beef/bean/pot mix)
SNACKS - fruit, juice, cinnamon toast, fruity shake, homemade salsa and a few chips

How was your week?  Is it feeling like fall yet?  Are gardens done or still producing?  Any great deals this week?  Inquiring minds want to know!!!!!!

I hope you all have  a fantastic week and stay healthy and safe and frugal.
Blessings from my humble little home to yours.


Keep your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking deceit.  Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.
Psalms 34: 13-14

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Goodies for Home or for Gifting

 Today I will give you a few easy recipes for goodies for your home or for gifting this holiday season to others.
We all like easy and these fit the bill.

CHRISTMAS BREAD
18 1/2 oz. box yellow cake mic
3 oz. pkg. instant pistachio pudding mix
4 eggs
1/2 C oil
1/4 C water
1 C sour cream
1/4 C sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
Combine cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, oil, water and sour cream.  Pour into  2 - 9x5 greased loaf pans.  I use use mini pans for gifting!!!!
In a small bowl mix sugar and cinnamon, sprinkle over batter.  Bake at 350* for 40 minutes (little less time if using small pans).
SO good.  Not just for Christmas in my opinion.

3 MINUTE FUDGE
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 C (12 oz. bag) semi sweet chocolate chips (I have used many flavors of chips)
1 tsp. vanilla
Butter a square pan or line with parchment (for easy removal)  Melt chips and milk in a safe bowl in the microwave for one minutes.  Remove and stir.  Continue at 30 second intervals until smooth.  Stir in vanilla.  Pour into pan.  Cool and cut into 1" pieces.  No need to refrigerate.



EASY APPLE BUTTER
4 quarts applesauce
4 1/2 C sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ground cloves
(Great use for excess applesauce) or get a gallon can at big box store
Combine all ingredients and pour in an uncovered slow cooker for 8 - 12 hours, stir occasionally.
After that time, check for thickness.  If still too thin - continue cooking until it reaches desired thickness.
Fill sterilized jars (leave 1" head space) and process in a water bath 20 minutes boiling bath.  shelf stable.  Makes 7 - 9 pints.  (I often use jelly jars, so I get more jars)
Apple butter and fresh biscuits or a loaf of homemade bread - yummy gift.


AMARETTO COFFEE CREAMER
3/4 C powdered non-dairy creamer
1 tsp. almond powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 C powdered sugar
Combine all ingredients and mix well.  Store in airtight container.
Attach directions:  Combine 2 Tbsp. of creamer to a cup of brewed coffee.  Makes 12 servings
**Think of your own add ins!  So many options that could be made.
Great gift for that coffee drinker
  

PEOPLE CHOW
1/2 C butter
1 C creamy peanut butter
2 C milk chocolate chips
17 pkgs. of each crispy corn and rice cereal (like Chex)
1 lb. powdered sugar
Combine butter, peanut butter and chocolate in a saucepan.  Melt over medium heat.  Pour over cereal and mix thoroughly, until cereal is covered.  Place cereal in a paper bag, sprinkle with powdered sugar, fold over top of bag, and shake well.  Keep in a closed container.
YUMMO!!!!!!!  This stuff is addictive!
You could make - bag in decorative baggies for gifting.


Fun yummies for you and others.
Have fun.  Hope this inspires someone!

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

We are the Champions!

 INDEED! We are the champions of our households.  We are working towards having financially stable homes, full pantries and a sustainable future.  That is what we do!
We live as simply as possible, we re-use and re-cycle, we keep neat homes, we plan and prepare.

We all know (or should) that having huge amounts of money is not what makes you happy.  If it were, we wouldn't hear of so many bad relationships and self loathing and destructive behavior in Hollywood.
We know there is so much more to happiness.  Our families, our friends, our Creator, stability, pets, love, home, etc.  There is so much to be said about contentment.  A content person is JUST HAPPY with what they have and thankful for all.


I  am one that planned for this time in life (as well as I/we could).  I am thankful to have only utility bills, insurance and taxes for the most part.  I live on very little money.  I really think people would be amazed at how little I spend.  It isn't really because I have to - I just see no need to spend all willy-nilly.  I have all I need.  It enables me to help others when necessary.
Sure I will spend when I find something that really would fit in my home and needs.  I do allow for wants as well - I just don't want much.
You can't totally deprive yourself or you will hate living a frugal life.  You have to give in once in a while.  Buy that pretty bauble or that new piece of furniture.  You can buy those treats or go out to eat once in a while.  Then you won't feel like you are struggling or just surviving.  Being frugal doesn't mean you can't still ENJOY life!  Quite the contrary - it often times gives you the ability to do fun things.

Treat everything you have as something special.  A blessing.  There are so many in the world - that can't imagine living like you do.  You are rich in their eyes.  You know what?  You are rich!!!  
Those who are blessed with decent health, family, friends, great memories, food, a bed, etc. ARE RICH!  You woke up this morning!  You have been given another day.  Yep, that is pretty special.

I have a very small home - not in the best area - BUT I have a home
I have decent, clean clothes, most bought at yard sales/thrift - BUT I have clothes
I have a pantry and I am quite flexible with food prep.  It doesn't have to be fancy - BUT I have nourishment
I have the love of family, friends and pets - what more do I need
I need nothing fancy.  Cost/spending doesn't mean I have less.  I am good.  You are too.  You are blessed.

Many of us have been preparing for this for years.  Some are new to preparing.  It is all good - because we are all working in the right direction.  Taking care of our families in the event that IT hits the fan.  We will be OK.  We can make do, compromise, be flexible and adjust.  We have a community here that helps us.  We encourage one another and that is wonderful.  We share ideas and we all learn new things.
Don't stress - don't panic - quit being fearful.  We can do this!

I keep thinking how good the governments of the world would be if they just let us frugal divas work on their budgets!!!!!  It sure would be better.  We wouldn't be spending more than we have - we would sell off all the trivial crap to pay off debt, we would work hard at being self sufficient, we'd make a budget and stick to it.
A lot of unnecessary people would lose jobs, the rest would take pay cuts and live on the same insurance and means as they rest of the folks, and they'd be grounded for a long, long time!!!!!!  LOL

So gals, just know if you hit a rough spot or have a failure not all is lost.  There are no real mistakes, just new learning opportunities.  Just get up and start again.  Reset and go forward.  Circumstances in life change and many times we have to restart for various reasons.  We have this.
Dust off that tiara and put it on nice and straight and march forward in all your glory!  You deserve to.  Never lose faith!!
WE are the CHAMPIONS!!!!


********************
Prayer in today's paper:
O God, sometimes we just need to start over.  Help us to begin again.  Help us toward the good future you seek to give us.
Amen

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Let's MIX It Up!

 Just a few simple mixes for your pantry or for gifts.  Simple things today.  I will do more posts with other mixes - at least once a week.
Hope this gives you some ideas.

ONION SOUP MIX
3/4 C instant minced onion
4 tsp. onion powder
1/3 C beef bouillon (dry)
1/4 tsp. celery seed
1/4 tsp. sugar
Mix together and store in an airtight container.  
2 TBSP. = one packet of store bought onion soup mix

ESSENCE OF EMERIL (ORIGINAL)
Emeril is a TV chef and he used to always call this "BAM"
2 1/2 Tbsp. paprika
2 Tbsp.  salt
2 Tbsp. garlic powder
1 Tbsp. black pepper
1 Tbsp. onion powder
1 Tbsp. cayenne
1 Tbsp. oregano
1 Tbsp. thyme.
Mix together and keep in an airtight container.  Use to taste.
Love this stuff!!!!!

PEPPERMINT COFFEE
1/3 C sugar (or equivalent of sweetener)
1/4 C powdered non-dairy creamer
1/4 C instant coffee granules
2 Tbsp. cocoa
2 Tbsp. crushed peppermint candies
Mix and place in a jar.  INSTRUCTIONS:  Mix 2 full Tbsp. to 1/2 C boiling water
This would be cute in a nice jar which is given with a fun mug

PUMPKIN DIP
MIX 
2 C powdered sugar
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. allspice
2 tsp. cinnamon
Place in a baggie
Give with a 15 oz. can pf pumpkin and 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese
Mix softened cream cheese with sugar/spices and then add pumpkin and mix.
Serve with gingersnaps or graham crackers
**I have given without the cream cheese (added an instruction label that says mix with your own)
And then I gift the ginger snaps or graham crackers
I am not a pumpkin person - but this is really good.

CREAM OF SOUP
2 C dry milk
2 1/2 C flour
1/4 C chicken bouillon powder   (or your fav)
2 tbsp. dried onion flakes
1/2 tsp, thyme
1 tsp. basil
Mix together and store in an airtight jar.
For casseroles mix 1/2 C to 1 1/4 C cups of water to 1/2 C mix
FOR SOUP - 1 C to 2 C water to 1/2 C mix
Equivalent to 10 cans of soup
**Think of the options - you could add any diced veggie or mushrooms to add extra flavor when cooking

CRAZY SALT - "Jane's Krazy Mixed-Up"
3Tbsp. onion flakes
2 Tbsp. garlic flakes (minced)
1 tsp. oregano
1 Tbsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. basil
1 Tbsp. onion powder
1 tsp. marjoram
Mix together and store in air tight jar.
Great on salads and veggies OR anything!!!!



This is a huge hit - no matter who gets it!  No it isn't low in calories and yes it is rich - but man it is YUMMY!!!
This is so good on toast and especially hot biscuits!
I used to get this at the Amish grocery and I spent a small fortune to get it.  Now I can make anytime and it is a hit as a gift.


WHY?  You may ask why make these things when they are so easy to buy already done.  WHY - when you need many ingredients to make? 
Well, you know what is in your seasonings and goodies - there is no added extras - anti-clumping - no preservatives, etc..
You can double or triple any of these to have plenty on hand or making it easier to gift.

Have fun and enjoy some homemade goodies.  Think about YUMS for yourself and others.
More recipes later!!!!!!


Sunday, October 10, 2021

Weekly Wrap-Up 10/10

 Happy Sunday.  Hope this finds everyone well and safe and happy!  
Fall has still not really come to our area.  We have been having lovely temperatures.  Rain - lots of rain this past week.  You had to jump in and do whatever you needed to do outside in between rain showers.
This weekend has been warm.  It looks like temps in 70's this coming week.


I have had an emotional week with my kitties.  Blackie cat, has been very unwell this week.  It just kept getting worse and then he decided not to eat or drink at all.  His eyes looked so sad, and he didn't want to be touched.  I truly thought I was going to lose him.  He had so many symptoms that Lilly did with excess fluid/enlarged heart before her passing.
Well yesterday I finally got him in the carrier and went to the emergency vet.  What a story that was!  So many hoops to go through with all the C rules!!!!  I couldn't even go in for over and hour and half to be with him.  Any way - it turned out he had a bad mouth/gum infection.  Huge long lasting antibiotic shot and pain meds and he is home!  I have him in a large kennel at the moment - wanted to keep him secluded over night to make sure he didn't react badly to anything.  He ate like crazy last night!  Not as much this morning - but he is on the mend.  So happy.
Not a cheap day at all.  Nothing cheap about emergency medicine!  WOW  I am glad I could do it.  Love my babies.

My week:
  • I did get the entire yard mowed
  • Returned library book to drop-off.  Didn't even go in
  • Did a lot of yard clean-up in between rain. There is so much to do.  Seems there is never a shortage of work
  • Picked more tomatoes.  Picked another bouquet.  Those volunteer tomato plants are  blooming!!!!!  Too funny
  • Aired the house most of the week.  Did have to turn on AC a couple afternoons due to humidity
  • I did stop at a brand new Dollar Tree about 6 blocks away.  Full of lots of craft stuff.  I got a few goodies.  They had 32 oz. peroxide - so I got a couple more to add to stock.  I use instead of bleach.  I got more little glue tubes, a couple wonderful smelling candles, some lollipops and a couple cook books for gifts (I showed those earlier this week).
The Wyler drink packets were a 10 pack!!!!!  Love those little glue tubes - usually the right size for a repair.  Tootsie pops - $1 and pumpkin scent candles!!!!!
  • Stopped at feed store and did a small stock.  Needed corn
  • I then stopped at a super Kroger across the road.  Not my usual store.  Goodness they were well stocked!  I was impressed.  They carry everything from clothes, dishes, toys to food.  I got an extra carbonator for the Soda Stream (to have this winter) and some fruit.  Got bananas - .39/lb., seedless grapes - .99/lb. and apples .77/lb..  If you get the opportunity to shop different stores, you may find different stock levels!  It sometimes pays to go to new places
  • Changed the furnace filter and the batteries in the smoke detectors.
  • Just doing all the normal stuff
Meals this week:
Chicken tamales and salad
Cheesy mac/beef/broccoli
Small pizza
Fish sandwich, oven fries and sliced tomatoes
Potato salad and sliced tomatoes & fruit (busy day)
Loaded hotdogs and potato salad
Burger - too upset to eat much then got home late

How was your week?  Did you get any deals or save any money?  Any gardens still active?
Love hearing from you all.

I hope you all have a great week.  I hope your are still enjoying mild temps.  May you all be safe and healthy this week.
Blessings from my humble little home to yours.


Each  one must do as he has made up his mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.  And God is able to provide you with every blessing in abundance, so that you will always have enough of everything and may provide in abundance for every good work.
2 Corinthians 7-8

Thursday, October 7, 2021

Changes and Listening (holiday version)

 The world is a changing - mostly I think not for the good.  That is my opinion.  I don't like a lot of what I am seeing.  SO many nasty people.  SO much technology, which people are leaning on and not using their minds any more.  SO many things being dissed.
I just find it all a bit disturbing.  I guess maybe I am old fashioned - as I haven't changed with a lot of the world.

Yes, I blog - but this is like connecting with and talking to old friends.
I do watch some You Tube - for ideas and recipes.  That is about it.
Yes, I have FB - but not liking it much any more.  I loved the shut down the other day!  Peace and quiet and no drama.  I know  I don't have to look - but it is kind of like a train wreck - you know you shouldn't look but you do!  (Actually thinking about leaving most groups and getting rid of lots of people)!!
But that is it for me.  No Instagram, no Twitter, no Tik-Tok, none of those other things.

I keep seeing all the shortage stories.  I see the stories about all the cargo ships being stuck and not unloading.  
I keep seeing the stories about Christmas will be different this year - if you don't shop NOW!
My response to Christmas - GOOD!!!!  It needs to be different.  Maybe we should be listening and reading between the lines!
We need to simplify and quit giving in to all the materialistic and commercial garbage we are spoon fed each and every day!

You know I am a homemade kind of gifter.  Give it a thought this year.  Make some changes.  Simplify.
Think about changing things up a bit.  
Here are a few ideas to think about and maybe start working on now.

FOOD - candies, fudge, cookies, sweet breads.  Jams, jelly, salsa, syrups, mixes of all sorts, home made bread, a good meal - some of yours or ancestors recipes

Get crafty!  Think about making up a basket of goodies.  Can be a food basket with a theme.  Movie night, pasta meal, pizza goodies, teas, candles and books, various soups, crackers/chips and dips, garden baskets - seeds/gloves/tools, a fisher mans basket or any other hobby, warm socks/a throw,  etc.
Doesn't have to be just a basket - old lunch boxes, a bait bucket, a tote, mixing bowl, strainer, hamper, picnic basket, a mug, a pitcher, a cook pan, etc.  There is no end to what you can use.

Get old leather coats at second hand stores and turn into new items.  Maybe a handmade handbag or tote bag
Oil cloth or vinyl table cloths could become re-usable grocery bags or totes.  You can even do this with vintage table cloths
Use old canning jars in new ways.  You can turn them into mix jars or make darling crafts with them.

I just saw these in a magazine and thought how cute.  It says they used a cream chalk paint.  There is no limit to the neat things that could be made.

TOGETHERNESS - give a gift of being together and sharing moments.  Maybe think of taking someone to a movie.  A zoo day.  A museum day.  A craft lesson.  A cooking lesson.

Simple things can be fun.  Books are great for everyone.  I love seeing people buying books for the little ones.  They are sitting together and reading.  I know 'tablets' are the thing for kids now - and they do learn - but to me it is a cheap baby sitter!  I have watched the little neighbor girl use and operate a tablet since before age 1.  I would love to see Momma sit and interact with her and read together and play together.
Places can provide many inexpensive books.  Think used - why not?  Thrift stores, yard sales, and used book stores, and even library sales.  Dollar Tree has a ton of books for kids and activity books and they also have many different types of books for adults.
I found these cookbooks at the Dollar Tree.  They had about 15 or more that were different.  They aren't huge, but lots of neat ideas (maybe 70 pages).  I got these to add to gift baskets of a couple young gals just learning!  Would be great for single guys as well.
Dollar stores also have tons of cute craft and holiday stuff.  Lots of pics and baubles to pretty up a gift or package.  

Stay local!!!!  Give an experience or a gift from a local shop, vendor or crafter.  You are helping your community - not a major already rich corporation.

There are so many ways to help a local business and give a wonderful gift or experience.  I like the idea of gift certificates to even a local ethnic grocer - maybe something the recipient wouldn't have thought of and it would be a fun experience.  Some might enjoy a local brewery experience.
We DO need to visit and help small business.  It is so important to keep them going in these trying times.  I don't understand why everyone keeps making Amazon bigger!!!!!!!  I don't utilize it myself - never have.

So give it some thought.  In this changing world - maybe we should be listening to what our hearts and minds feel.  Maybe we are being nudged by a higher presence to get back to making the holiday what is MEANT to be!!!!  A time of reflection, and time of thankfulness, a time of love, and a time of simplicity.

STOP THE COMMERCIAL MADNESS!!


Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Flexibility - It is Important in Life

 Flexibility is important in all aspects of life!  If you have ever been married or in a relationship - you know how important it is.  Give and take and not always what one thought reality would be.  In work places - flexibility is a must.  In friendships we have to be flexible.  It is important in life in general.  NOTHING ever goes as we expect and we just have to make new plans, follow new routes and do what we can do.

It is very important in our pantries as well.   If you can be flexible you will be blessed.  Times get tough, weather gets bad, plans change - learn to use what you have in new ways.  It saves money, time and supplies and you will never go hungry! 
Let's get flexible!!!!!!

A few ideas:
No cream cheese?  Cream some cottage cheese and blend with a little butter
No Ricotta cheese - use cottage cheese
Use 2 Tbsp. of flour for every one on cornstarch needed for sauces
Brown sugar = 1 C sugar plus 2 Tbsp. molasses
Buttermilk = 1 cup plain yogurt OR a Tbsp. of vinegar added to enough milk to make a cup - let it set for 5 minutes
1 cup sour = 1 cup plain yogurt

1 pkg. of dry yeast = 1 Tbsp. bulk yeast
1 Tbsp. lemon juice = 1/2 Tbsp. vinegar
1 chopped onion = 1 Tbsp. instant minced onion

1 C tomato sauce = 1/2 C tomato paste + 1/2  C water
1 tsp. dried herbs  = 1 Tbsp. fresh herbs

Bacon = ham pieces, smoke flavor
Butter, margarine, shortening in baking = applesauce
Heavy cream in sauces or soups  evaporated milk  (remember you can buy cream that is shelf stable)

There are so many things in the pantry that takes the place of something else.  It just takes a bit of thought and imagination.
We all know that rice, potatoes and past can be switched about in meals.  Don't have one - use another.  Brown rice or long grain rice instead of white rice.
Fresh potatoes, frozen potatoes, dried or flaked potatoes - options!!!!!!!!!!

No meat and needing to add flavor to soup, casseroles or meals - just get those seasonings and bouillons out.
Any type of bouillon, spices and herbs, smoke, cheese, dehydrated veggies of any sort, tomato products (any kind - think salsa, marinara, spicy tomatoes), broth, stock..... the  list goes on and on.  There is no reason to serve a bland meal - there are tons of options for flavor and can give a meal a robust taste.

No frig milk - well there are options.  Dry milk, shelf stable milk, evaporated milk,  You can even use almond or nut milks or coconut milk - depending on what you are making.   You can even water down cream if you have it.

Cheese - I love cheese and use a lot of it.  It is a great flavor booster in foods.  I always keep powdered cheese - lots of it.  It works well in soups and casseroles and even added to mac.  There are options like Velveeta (you can make your own as well), and you can get individual packets of creamy Velveeta for single use.  These are shelf stable and I really like keeping a few of those on hand. (I get at Dollar Tree).  Think cheesy soups and there is jarred/canned nacho cheeses which are shelf stable.
I like having shelf stable cheese options.

It isn't just food - many times we get colds, flu, allergies or just sniffles.  I keep a good OTC medicinal pantry - but I truly like natural choices as well.  There are so many and people just don't think about it.

There are many other herbs and everyday products that help us.  We need to know our options.  I am a huge advocate of Vitamin C, D and Zink as well.  If I feel a cold or congestion coming on - I make a hot toddy of sorts.  Hot tea, lemon juice, honey and optional a shot of whiskey or bourbon.  It kicks it every time.  Hot tea and honey is a good 'for what ails you' plan!  My Daddy ate raw garlic every day and I never remember him having a cold.

                                                          This stuff works!  

I also believe in eating fruits.  I am a huge apple and orange eater - whatever is seasonal.  I do believe in the old saying "an apple a day keeps the doctor away".  It seems to work well for me.
Do some RESEARCH on herbs and natural healing!  You will be glad you did.

Cleaning is another place to be flexible.  So many options instead of chemicals.  Use natural and what you have.  So many things are inter-changeable.

Baking soda in place of cleanser.  Peroxide instead of bleach and it cleans.  Vinegar instead of fabric softener and it works on windows/mirrors and general cleaning.  Alcohol for cleaning general surfaces.  Dish soap in a pinch for shampoo or even laundry.  Bar soap can be grated and turned into laundry soap or liquid soap.  It just takes a little creativity.

Paper goods - if you run out of TP have wet wipes on hand.  You can clean with a wash cloth and water/soap, you can make your own washable wipes, you can get a bidet attachment.
Paper towels - use rags instead.  Newspaper can be used to clean up wet spills or to wash windows.  Cut old worn clothing into rags.

We all know different ways to save and stretch that budget and what we have.  

We truly live in a time of abundance - no doubt about it.  I know - I hear all those stories about shelves at stores containing less and less - but BE FLEXIBLE.  If you can't find what you WANT - get something different.  This really is a time of abundance, just not maybe what you want.
Be grateful you can walk into a store.  Be grateful that you have so many to choose from.  Be grateful you have a pantry and freezer well stocked.  Be grateful you have options.

Remember back to the days of the big depression - there were no choices to speak of.  If you didn't grow it, make it - you didn't have it.  Options were very limited (we haven't seen anything like that yet).  During those dark days there were people not able to find ANY work - today you can find jobs on every corner - you just have to be willing to be flexible!  They didn't have food stamps or unemployment then.  They didn't have food pantries to speak of.  There were 'soup lines' - and people were grateful for watered down whatever!!!  
There were the dust bowl days - no crops - animals died.  People died.

Folks remember how GOOD you have it.  Quite complaining and learn to be FLEXIBLE. 
Life goes on.  Wants and needs are two different things.  You can eat and eat well on a little money and just by 'playing' with your food.
Look at what you have with new eyes and learn to be flexible!!!!!

Blessings to all.

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Fall Chores - What You Up To?

 It is that time again, to do all those fall/winter chores before it gets too cold.  Most of us Northern hemisphere folks have many things to do.  Winters get cold and we sure don't need extra problems.   

Just a few things too think about:
  • Empty out those outdoor hoses and shut down all those outdoor faucets. If there is a way to add some think Styrofoam "cages" around your outdoor faucets that would be great added protection
  • If you have rain barrels - get them empty before freeze - you sure don't want them to bust
  • If your furnace still vents through a chimney - make sure your chimney is clear and clean.  My furnace now vents out the side of the house - so no worry about that.  Do you use a fireplace or heat stove - make sure AGAIN that chimneys are clean.  Fires start from chimney build-up
  • Seal any doors and windows that have drafts.  Weather stripping and caulk doesn't cost and lot and it is easy to do.  Have bottom door draft dodgers as well!!!!
  • Some people put plastic or bubble wrap over windows - something to think about
  • Have furnace checked out - make sure it is functioning properly
  • Change that furnace filter!!!!!!  Have extras for the winter
  • Check all your batteries in smoke alarms.
  • Reverse ceiling fans.  Funny note - I have never changed mine.  They run the same 24/7!  I BAD!
Fall in country - pretty
  • Make sure all the shingles on your roof are down and in good shape.  Look for any damage NOW
  • Clean those gutters - your don't want water and snow to form dams because of clogged gutters.  That will damage your gutters and your siding and your home
  • Mulch leaves - many people mulch & leave them on the grass to nourish the lawn over winter.  I like to rake and place them on the garden for added nutrition
  • IF you have a sump pump - makes sure it is working.
  • Clean and take in or cover patio furniture
  • Trim any odd branches from trees or large shrubs
  • Make sure your steps, walks and handrail are in good shape.  You don't need any loose or sharp objects that can cause more concern for falling
  • Have ice melt of some sort on hand and have your shovel or snow blower ready.
  • Have extra hat, gloves, socks in vehicle - maybe a blanket as well.  If you live out a ways, make sure you have some sort of energy snacks.  I like to keep a big bag of kitty litter in the back end - in case of getting stuck some where.  Sand works too - I just do cat litter because it is something I can use.  I also have a small collapsing shovel.  Have a flashlight with you if possible.
  • Make sure you keep your gas tank as FULL as possible when it is cold
  • WOMEN always make sure your cell phone is charged when you go out in the winter!!!!  Can't call for help if it is dead.
  • If you have outdoor pets/animals - make sure they have warm shelter and water bowls that are maybe heated
  • Maybe think about having dusk to dawn lights put up outside - for safety during the long dark hours

LASTLY
Now is definitely the time to inventory those pantries and freezers.  Make lists and organize and know what you have.  Stock up on those items that may be getting low.  Special holiday items will be coming available soon!  Make sure you have cold/flu items on hand.  Lotion for dry skin.  
Make sure you pantries are stocked and your pets pantry as well.  If you have to be in for an extended amount of time - you need to eat.  
Think about everything your use - food, pets, health & beauty, medical, vehicle, wild animal feed, cleaning items, laundry things...................................
Think about gift ideas and holiday foods as well.  You just never know!!!!

Get things done now before the snow flies and temps get below freezing.  It sure is easier to do in a little warmer weather.  Get your home, yard, vehicles and pantries in order NOW!!

Sunday, October 3, 2021

Weekly Wrap-Up 10/3

 Happy October to all!  
It is amazing to me that it is already October.  A few short months and we will be in a new year again!
I hope this finds you well and safe.

We started the month warm!  It has been rainy yesterday and will be again today.  Temps in the low 70's.  Trees are just now starting to get some color - not the big burst of fall yet - but starting!

As you might have read, on my special Update post - Adi is home and doing so much better.  Yesterday afternoon I got to go (in spite of rain) to my brothers and had a cookout with them.  I got LOTS of cuddle time with the 3 youngest baby girls in the family.  Layla - 6 months, Remi and Adi!  It was wonderful - nothing like baby snuggles.  Adi is kind of stand-offish with most and she and I had a grand time.  Lots of bouncy horsey knee rides - Auntie making lots of noises and Adi laughing the whole time.  She kept trying to 'feed' me her fingers!!!  LOL  Then she snuggled against my chest with her ba-ba for a good hour or more.  Remi had a ball collecting things from grandpas garden to feed the bunnies who live under her place house at home!  She would come over and show me what she and gpa had collected and jabbering up a storm!    Layla let me hold her for a good half hour before she decided she wanted Mommy.
It was a wonderful afternoon with family.  Adi's Mommy and Daddy said to send their unending THANKS for all the prayers.

I have a bunch of volunteer cherry tomato plants coming up in pots!!!  Some have gotten to about 18" tall this week.  Crazy.  I have tried to winter tomatoes before and never had luck - so it is a shame they came up now.  My impatient plants are still gorgeous.
The New England aster started blooming.
I am not sure what to think about the squirrels and birds.  Usually they would be eating tons this time of the year.  Not this year!  Wonder if there is another big source of food.  I know the squirrels are eating walnuts - they bring them here to de-shell!  Whatever, it is saving me a little money for now.

My very quiet week:
  •  I made a batch of "mounds" brownies and gave half away
  • Stayed home all week - no shopping
  • Picked about 15 more tomatoes and 2 cucumbers!
  • Aired out the house a lot this week.  Only used AC on 2 afternoons for an hour or so
  • Cooking from what I have on hand.
  • Did a bunch of yard work:  Cut back the grape arbor, cut back all 'out of control' climbing roses, deadheaded lots of flowers, pulling weeds....................
  • Doing all the normal stuff we all do
  • Cut a bouquet of asters and a rose
               This rose is from my oldest plant (here over 35 years) and the smell is heavenly!

Meals this past week:
Beef Manhattan
Leftover mashed potatoes and beef with a salad
Tuna patty, mac n cheese and salad
Spicy chili beans with hotdog added and potato puffs
Taco bowl
Sausage/egg/cheese sandwich and sliced tomatoes
Brother's cookout
SNACKS - brownies, apples

How was your week?  Did you all get any deals?  Getting your fall on?  Give us a shout out and let what you are up to.  We get so many ideas from each other!

I pray you and yours stay healthy and safe.  Again thank you for keeping my family members in your prayers.
Blessings from my humble little home to yours.

Grace to you and peace from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
2 Thessalonians 1:2
AMEN

Friday, October 1, 2021

UPDATE

 I just wanted to give you all an update on our precious Adi.
Monday night was bad - very bad.  No one (including her parents) really thought she would see morning.  It appeared she had just given up.  All here stats were super low - no crying - no fussing - bad color - just bad.

Tuesday morning the doctors and the nurses came in and were blown away.  There was a 'different' child  in that bed!  She was smiling and happy.  Stats were great.  Color good.
The doctors all said they had NO IDEA what could have possibly caused the difference.  They had done nothing different and that there was absolutely NO reason what so ever for that miraculous change.

UUMMMMM - YES THERE WAS!  PRAYER - AMBUNDANT PRAYER

SHE IS HOME !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
She is still an ill child - but nothing like she was.  Some of the conditions that she was diagnosed with here in Indy and in Cincy have disappeared!  She is off several meds.  She had blood clots at pic lines and they were gone (she will take meds for that just in case).
They removed the tubes down her throat and nose - she just has her feed tube in belly now.  Any water she drinks has had thickeners in it - NO more thickeners - no more water.  She gets Pedialyte  now and she loves it!!!!!! (with a preemie nipple).  Still no real food - but hoping that will progress in the future.
My brother went to see her yesterday and she was laughing, playing and being the sweet little pixie she always was with her sister!!!!!!!!!

I couldn't help but think that I asked for prayer on Sunday (which was Monday in parts of the world).  And many didn't see post till Monday - and she was at her worse on Monday.  Everything changed over night.  My brothers church has been praying and their missionaries over seas as well.  SO many people have been praying all over the world - and there was an abundance of prayer at the first of the week.
NO ONE will ever convince me of anything different.

GOD IS GREAT!
Even the doctors said it HAD to be a miracle - because there was no medical reason for the change.

Adi is on the left and Remi is on right.  They almost look like twins - but are a year apart.  Both still have many medical issues and battles to get through - but today they are happy and at home together with Mommy and Daddy and big brother and sister!
I thought you might want to see their sweet faces!  
I just love those faces!!!!

If you have it in your heart to keep them on your prayer list - please do.  I pray that they both get past these battles and have a long and healthy life.  I do believe God has something very special instore for them!

THANK YOU is not even enough.  You all helped and made a difference and I am indebted to you all.  God heard each of you!
My family is forever grateful for all the prayers.
May God bless each of you and your families.

THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, September 30, 2021

Thursday This and That

 My goodness, here we are at the end of September.  Crazy!!!  October is for sure the beginning of fall for me.  Campfires, leaves falling, cooler temps, sweatshirts............
I really do like this time of the year.  I think Spring is my favorite followed up with fall.

We had a conversation Tuesday about not having power or being without lights.  I noticed something the other day with a new neighbor.  Remember that yard I showed a while back with the full dump truck in the backyard?  (Oh that place was awful).  Well it has been cleaned up and there is a small family living there.  She obviously does not have a dryer and there is no clothes line - but that doesn't stop her!  She has figured a way to dry her clothes.  No power needed!!!!
She uses the fence rows!  Both sides.  Almost any day that is nice - you see her 'hanging' her laundry out there.  Bless her heart - she has a need and she figured out a solution until something better comes along.  So we all need to remember - "where there is a will, there is a way".  Being creative works.
*************************************

I think of different foods when cooler weather comes along.  I am a seasonal type person.  I can't wait for a pot of chili!!!!
There are some inexpensive food that can be had this time of the year to stretch that budget.  Now ids cabbage time and many farm markets have it and it is usually a cheaper ingredient.  I love chopped and fried cabbage (in bacon grease).  Mmmmmm!
Another favorite is sauteed cabbage with a little ham or smoked sausage or chopped Spam with rice added.  It is so good and comforting - and very filling and frugal.
                                                                 Comfort food!              
Smores are also a fall favorite - remember you don't have to buy all kinds of ingredients.  Just keep it simple  and you can even enjoy them in the house!!!!!!
Yep, store brand fudge striped cookies and marshmallows is all you need.  Roast the marshmallows over a gas flame (on stove) or heck - even with a lighter!!!!  LOL

FRIED CORN OR HOMINY
If you haven't tried this you need to.
1 can corn or hominy - drained
chopped peppers and chopped onion
Fry all together in butter or bacon grease (yes) until the peppers and onion are tender and corn or hominy has a lightly golden color.
A favorite of mine.  Makes for a nice side dish and something different.

EASY GLAZED CARROTS
1 pkg. baby carrots (16 oz.)
1/4 C apple cider
1/4 C apple jelly
1 1/2 tsp. dijon-style mustard
Place carrots and cider in a sauce pan and bring to a boil.  Simmer until carrots are tender and liquid is pretty well gone.  Add jelly and mustard.  Jelly melts and glazes.
These are so easy and tasty.

Now is the time to think about adding new and different dishes to your meal plan.  Keeps things fun and you don't get bored and your family tries new things.
****************************************

Now is the time to start looking for the ingredients to make up jar recipes - whether meal or spices - coffees or teas or chocolate - so many great ideas to be had.  I will do some posts of jar recipes in coming days.  They are nice to have on the pantry shelves and they are nice to have for gifts.  Jar recipes make great gift baskets.
Super nice to have on the shelf in case that unexpected person drops by around the holidays and you want to give them something.  Makes nice hostess gifts as well.
Coming soon!!!

Now is orchard time - apples, cider and pumpkins and gourds!  I love apples and cider!  The orchard I go to has a sales building that has a huge fireplace - on a cold day a fire will be roaring!  That is their only heat and it is just so fun to go in.  
Fall is in the air!

What are your favorite fall ideas?  Favorite foods or traditions?



Wednesday, September 29, 2021

So Different - So the Same

I had a post ready for today and changed my mind at the last minute.  I don't know why I do that except that something moves me.
I get so tired of negative stuff and drama in the world.  All the negative posts we make and all the garbage we drum up isn't going to change a thing!  EVER!

I am so humbled to have so many lovely people following along on this little journey of a blog.  You guys are the best.  
We are all different - we come from different countries - we are different ethnicities - we have different religious or spiritual beliefs - some came from money - some from extreme poverty - we are ALL different!
YET - we all have things in common.  We care, we love, we share, we try - we are one.


We each take time out of our day to visit and to share.  We take time to care about one another and to pray and send good thoughts.
Will we change the world?  Maybe not - but like the pic above says - we may change it for one person!  If we all change the world for one person - well, that would make big difference.  Wouldn't that be lovely?

We can't stop the world happenings.  Stuff is going to happen as the powers that be have a plan. 
We CAN however change the world in bits and pieces.   Do good,  Be positive.  Have faith.  Spread only positive and not hate or fear or panic.  
We each have a place in this cosmic thing - and how we respond matters.  
BE WHAT YOU WANT TO SEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I thank you all for coming along on this journey with me.  I love you all and admire you all.  You have no idea how many MOMENTS you have helped me get through.  I love how we seem to be one big EXTENDED family. 

Wishing you all a blessed day and week!



PS - Your continued thoughts and prayers for Adi seem to be working.  Please don't stop!!!  Thank you.

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Don't Get Caught in the Dark

 Today is about many options we all have or could have if we had to be without power for an extended time.  It could happen and has happened for various reasons.  Weather is always a huge cause of power outages - but it could be anything.
I think we have probably ALL been without power for short periods and survived.  A long outage could be different.
Not only heat and AC - many have to worry about freezers and health issues.  
Today are just a few ideas to keep in mind should you be caught in this situation.

LIGHTS
Lights for me, wouldn't be a big problem.  I have candles - lots of candles.  I have solar lights outside - that I could bring in.  Otherwise I would be OK.   I wouldn't have to have lights at night - I would just go to bed or sit outside.   
Candles are always a good bet - scented or plain.  Cheap solar lights (like dollar store) would be great.  They absorb light all day and bring them in and you have light at night.  I have even seen pics where you can really radiate their light by placing a plastic  (like milk) jug over them.  Oil lamps are a great source of light.  Make sure you have oil that is OK for inside and soot free.
Flashlights of course.  Big and small - they work.  Make sure you keep batteries on hand.
I have 2 or 3 battery operated candles for a nice glow.
Even something as simple as glow sticks would help and maybe make it not as scary for young-ins.
I have a couple of head lamps as well.  They would work if you just had to read or sew or do something close up.
 I also have a battery powered weather radio - and a battery powered regular radio (so music would be an option!).

POWER
There are several options.  None are super cheap, but they are things that you can get that would make life easier.
The one thing that is a great help is a generator.  A generator can help keep a freezer going, AC/fan on for a while, heat, cooking, medical aids, etc.
You could always plug in small heaters to help with cold - it may be difficult to hard wire your furnace.  Your freezer could be plugged in for a few hours every day or two - to keep things frozen.  Perhaps you would need to run a sump pump - a generator would help.  Now granted, you have to have fuel to keep it going.  Something else to think about.  But at least it would help for short periods of time to keep life somewhat normal and perhaps keep you alive.
If it is winter - you could always transfer frozen or refrigerated items to coolers in garage or outside - barring you have no major critter problem.

This is a whole house generator.  No they aren't cheap - but they are always there and ready to go.  This is directly tied into our gas line and then tied into the electrical box.  If the power goes out - this turns on within seconds.  Sure it would be expensive on the gas bill to run a household for a long period of time - but I would have power.  I would not use things as normal - like I would keep AC off unless absolutely necessary.  Heat would be kept low - most lights off.  But I WOULD have heat and my freezer would still be good!  
We invested in this to make sure that G would always be comfortable and to make sure our freezer always had power.
Now if the gas suddenly quits flowing - I have to revert to plans C, D and ..... oh crap!!!!!!!!!!

There are less expensive options as well for short periods of time.
This device sure came in handy before we had the generator.  Glen used a Bi-Pap almost ALL the time to easily breath.  This thing worked wonderfully.  It gave us 8 - 10 hours of power for his medical device.  NOTE:  we were also on the power company register for medical emergencies.  Our power pole/area would be attended quickly.  Look into that if you have extreme medical needs at your home.!!!!
If I remember correctly - this cost less than $200 back when we purchased it.  Not sure about now.  It was literally a life saver.  You keep it plugged in to keep charged and then when the need arises you have a small power station.  Like I said it worked his Bi-Pap for a good 8-10 hours, it would power a cook plate or crockpot, maybe the coffee pot or  fan or a small heater.  Many uses.
On another note - it also will jump the batteries in your vehicle!!!!  Indeed!!!  This has saved me so many times - dead of winter - no one around - Blazer needed jumped.  I did it all by myself.  I have even taken it with me in the car - when having battery problems in severe cold.  
A very good multi use gadget to have.

This is a converter that G installed in the Blazer.  It turns the vehicle power into electric power while the vehicle is running.  I use this to charge my cell phone if I notice it is low while I am out.  G installed it to actually power his Bi-Pap and still be able to go places.  We loved to wonder the back roads and this gave him the ability to be away from home for a while and still be comfortable.  (where there is a will there is a way!)
You could use it to power anything not too large for a short period.
This is the side view - where the electric plug-in is.  It is about the size of my hand out stretched and fits on the center console.  I believe it was around $50.

COOKING
I have a gas stove that is electronic spark start.  Generally I can light it with a lighter, just by turning on the gas knob and lighting.
If you have any kind of generator - big or small odds are you could power a crockpot or insta-pot or a heat plate.  Think about having a way to cook that isn't power driven.  Gas or charcoal grills, fire in the back yard with a grate.  Solar oven.  Shoot, you can even cook little things or warm them on a hot sunny day in a closed vehicle (yep it gets that hot).  You could have a rocket stove or even a clay pot over a candle - can heat items up.
Have a coffee pot that doesn't require power and could be used on the grill or over a campfire.    Your home canned goods COULD be eaten from the jar!  So could many store bought items.  It may not be as good cold (not heated) - but you would have food.

IF you have a well and it requires power for a pump - think about an alternate way.  Do you have a hand pump?  Do you have water stored?  You could use a generator for periods of time to get a days worth of water.  Have alternatives.

I keep plenty of warm clothing around - generally it isn't needed - but I have it.  I NEVER get rid of blankets, quilts or comforters.  If I wouldn't need them for staying warm, perhaps a neighbor might and even my animals. (don't forget about your pets).  One could also wrap their canned (non freezer) type food in blankets or quilts to keep it warmer and not freeze.  You could cover windows and doors to prevent drafts.  You could wrap your pipes.

Lots of things to think about.  Do you have alternative sources for power?  Do you have ways or know a way to cook?  Would you stay warm (fireplace or wood stove maybe).
There are ways to survive about anything.  Some don't cost a thing and others can be a bit costly.  Start thinking about what you would do IF caught in the dark!!!!!




Sunday, September 26, 2021

Weekly Wrap-Up 9/26

 Happy Sunday my friends.  Hoping this finds you well and happy.
I have been in quite the mood this week.  I didn't seem to accomplish a lot - I slept a lot - just in a funk.  It was gloomy, wet and grey this week.  I was sad, prayerful, nostalgic, and worried. 
 
I have a gr.gr. niece who is just one - and she is a sick, sick baby.  She and her sister (age 2) have many gastro/intestinal issues and poor little Adi is really not doing well.  She was in our best children's hospital and then they sent her to Cincinnati.  Mom, Dad and Adi are there and other family is home with grandpa.  She is such a precious innocent baby - if you feel it - please say a prayer for her healing and for the doctors and nurses and researchers knowledge.  Every test comes back normal - but something is seriously wrong.
She did do a little upturn yesterday  - but still no answers.  They have said this could take weeks or longer to figure out - but they aren't giving up.  Poor baby is such a little trooper. 


We had a ton of rain this week.  It rained for 30 hours straight!  It has turned chilly.  Nights are in the 40's and 50's - but no heat on yet!!!  Days are getting back to 70's - so that is lovely.  The leaves haven't really changed yet.  Everything is still green - just a blush of color here and there.
Saw Rocky racoon again on Friday.  Dang that thing is huge and waaayyyy too friendly.  I stayed out while the cats ate that morning and then brought their food dishes in for a while.  I finally thought about setting the live trap - and by then Rocky had decided to leave!  LOL
I wouldn't worry if it weren't for the cats.
My hummingbirds have finally left the area.  No views at all this week.  So sad - I sure miss those little jewels.

My quiet week:
  • I remade crab salad into a hot dip
  • I picked a few more tomatoes and some thyme
  • Been using the soda stream for some bubbly drinks
  • I thawed some sausage and used some for a meal and then cooked a re-froze the balance
  • I did clean the back gutter - it looked like it might have a bunch of stuff in it - but wasn't bad.  A couple twigs was what I was seeing.  It is under a tree - so better safe than sorry
  • I cleaned leaves from deck, back patio area and cleaned the floor of the garage.  Did just a tiny bit of yard work - just couldn't get into it!
  • I did bring in my one houseplant from outside before it got too chilly
  • I ran to Pet Smart for more flea meds for all the kitties for the next several months
  • Stopped at Kroger on the way home as they had tuna on sale for .69/can.  I got 10 to add to stock.  I also bought a few apples and bananas.  I found a head of  cauliflower for .99
  • Just doing all the normal stuff we all do every day  - nothing exciting
  • Been using my melt pots and scraps of favorite candles for fall scent in the house
                       Some hardy stalks of thyme.  I love that stuff - I have it air drying.

Meals this past week:
Hot cheesy/jalapeno/crab dip and crackers
Baked potato topped w/bal, of crab dip and a cuke & tomato salad
Sausage gravy over toast
Green beans w/potatoes and smoked sausage - sliced tomatoes
Small homemade pizza
Leftover day - a bit of this and that
Oven baked fish, mac n cheese and sliced toms
SNACKS  fruit, apples & peanut butter, cheese & crackers

What have you all been up to?  How is the weather in your part of the world?  Are you still gardening or finding any deals?
Hey - you know we are now less than 90 days until Christmas?!  My how time flies.
I know I need to get my bum in gear this week and get busy outside.  So much to take care of and to clean up and out!

I hope you are your families are all well and safe.  Blessings from my humble little home to yours.

I need to remember this.  God is in control.  All things happen in His time.  We are His children and He loves us.  Lord I raise my worries up to You and ask for Your guidance, directions and loving presence in my life.  Thank You for each and every blessing and moment I receive each and every day.  AMEN