Thursday, March 30, 2023

Todays Bits

 Happy Thursday all.  Here we are at the end of yet another week and month!  Amazing.
Today we are to have a lovely day here - but tomorrow brings storms.  It looks like there are some pretty nasty storms west of here (and will be south) - I am praying for everyone's safety.

Just a random post of odd and end things today.

I am missing many of you.  Debby, Frances, Penny, Rhonda and many others.  Haven't seen some for a week or so, and others for much longer.  I do pray you are all well and safe.  You are always missed.

My yard is waking up.  It is very green and growing.  Amazingly, after the freezing nights, my daffodils are still blooming.  The magnolia trees around have bloomed out again, and they are beautiful (until the storms hit).  They started to bloom a little, and then froze - so I figured they were toast this year.  But, lo and behold they came back.  All kinds of perennials are popping up - not blooming yet, but there are 100's of shades of green outside.

My red bellied woodpecker through my window and screen.  Not a good picture - but man oh man, is it pretty.  Such a majestic bird.  It is really a decent size as well.
Not my image, but this is a clear picture of the above bird.
The bird is out there every day - and it sure does love peanuts!  It is something to see it and the huge blue jays sitting at the feeder together.

I walked through the house the other day, and noticed a big bird in the neighbors front yard.  I grabbed the camera and stepped out the front door and got a quick pic.  It was a turkey buzzard!  That thing was HUGE - when it flew off, I know the wingspan was every bit of 4' to 5'.  The picture doesn't do it justice.
It looked to be bigger than a turkey.
For living right in the city - it sure is amazing the nature I get to experience!!!!!

Today will be doing odds and ends outside - before the storm hits.  I will surely being airing the house - did that a bit yesterday as well.

Just a little reminder - my weekly words of wisdom!!!!!
I know we all care about others, nature and the world - we are just a fleck of dust amongst it all.  The grandeur we can see each day (if we really look) is amazing.
Look at everyone and everything with 'child' eyes!!!!  Then you will see the beauty if all things.

Many blessings to you all.  Prayers for safety for all in line of the storms and prayers others are safe after last weeks storms.  Spring storms can be so nasty!
Spring is here or almost here - depending on where you live!!!  
Days are brighter and warmer and all is coming to life.

Wishing all a wonderful remainder to your week!

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Fun Day - Lore and Sayings

 Let us have a little fun today!  I said something the other day to a friend - and they said 'where did that come from?".  It was one of those little things our parents said, and we learned as we grew up.  The tales, lore and superstitions of old!  There are many today who still believe!!!!!

Many make sense - but not for the reasons that they were believed.  Here we go!!!!

Cardinals in your yard are visiting angels!
Kind of like to believe that - let's just if it is, I have a lot of visitors.  It makes me smile - so that is all that matters.

Chicken soup cures a cold!
May not cure it - but it do make the nose run.

Black cats cross your path is bad luck!  
Nooooooo - love me some black kitties

Knock on wood for luck!
Never understood that one - but I still do it (usually knock my head)

Breaking a mirror is 7 years bad luck!
Hmmmmmm - I have broken so many

Apple a day keeps the doctor away!
Can't hurt

Going out in the cold with wet hair will make you sick!
My goodness, I did that EVERY single day for years when I worked.  I was healthier than most

Your nose itches someone is coming to visit!
Your ears itch - someone is talking about you!
Your hand itches you are coming into money!

Walking under a ladder is bad luck!
Only if someone drops something on you - LOL

Shaving makes your hair come grow back quicker and darker!
It sure always seemed so to me

Pick one gray hair and you will get 2 more!
I'd be bald if I picked the gray - LOL

Starve a cold and feed a fever!
I always did this - still would IF I got sick

Red sky at night, sailors delight
Red sky in morning, sailors take warning!
It seems to be the instance often

Find a penny, pick it up and all the day you have good luck!
At least you are a penny ahead

Wishing on the first star to make a wish come true!
Sweet sentiment - never worked for me

A women shouldn't can food when on her monthly!
No evidence whatsoever to prove that correct

Death always comes in three's!
Sometimes it does seem so

Toss salt over your shoulder if you spill something!
Supposedly this was to blind the devil standing behind you that is causing you grief (I always thought it was for luck)

There are just so many superstitions, lore, tales of old, whatever you call them.  They are fun to read, and many kind of make sense!!! (in some way)
There are hundreds that have lived through the ages.  Many were for particular areas of the world.  Our ancestors brought them with them and here we are today - still repeating them!

What lore do you remember?  I am sure I have missed many popular ones.
This should be fun!!!!!!

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

My Observations to Saving and Being Happy

 Good morning.  Today I am going to talk a bit about my observations over the years on gaining financial independence and security and being happy as well!  I know most of the regulars here, know these things, but it is always good to have a reminder.  I also hope that we get some folks who are just attempting to start their financial journey, and perhaps this can give them an idea or two.
We are all in this together.  We all want to be secure.  We all want some financial freedom.  And we all want to be happy.

If you watch the news or just watch TV programming today, you have learned that money does NOT make people happy!  It may give them lots of stuff - big houses, fame, money, stuff - yet they change partners faster than a rabbit breeds!  They commit suicide, they do drugs and alcohol, and they think they are far more important to society than they really are!  NO matter how much money one has - they can't take it with them as much as they may try!!!!!!!

So here are just a few observations and thoughts:

What do you really want?  A huge fancy house and fancy cars and all the stuff - means you work and work and work to gain them and then you work and work to keep them!!!!!  
A reasonable home and vehicle and a modest amount of things - means less working at a job and more time with your family.
More doing YOU and YOURS!  
It is so much easier to have a smaller, less expensive home - and pay it off and being independent of having a mortgage.  It costs less for up-keep as well.  It is all about trade-offs!!!!!
Decide what is REALLY going to make you HAPPY first - then do what is necessary.

Yeah, I know there are people out there at this very moment saying - "take your money and spend it.  Spend it on everything you may need or want.  Just spend it or lose it."
NOOOOOOO - don't do that!  Times are very volatile at the moment - but you don't lose investments IF you don't take them out!  We have seen this happen over and over  - things go down and lose value - but they go back up - sometimes greatly.  So I advise to leave investments alone.
Now to get to this point - you can't just spend and spend at your every whim!  Some people buy anything and everything that pops in their head and that they THINK they want at any given moment.  There is NO saving in doing that.
If you want a stable future - you need to save a percentage of your money every week.  SOMETHING!
Spending is often impulse - and investing is looking to the future.  It is putting value in YOU and your future!

Kind of like above.  Do you need that $6 coffee every day?  Do you need that new outfit for an event?  Do you need the new car?  It isn't just big stuff - those small things add up QUICKLY!
Say you spend $10 a day for lunch out (cheap) - 5 days a week - all year long - that is $1,300.00!
That is just one example.  Many people eat out all the time, buy those fancy coffees, smoke, go out and party, buy new pretties, make a dozen trips a week to the grocery (then still eat out), etc........ and then wonder why they can't save!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Think long and hard before making big purchases, and rethink all those smaller ones.  No impulse buying.  Yes, it is hard to break the cycle - but IF you want a secure future, you need to think.

I think you can be both!  Just my opinion and my experience.
But there can be a difference.  It all depends on your relationship with money.  I was VERY happy and content with my life 4 years ago!  Now I am still content and I am happy - but not the same kind of happy.  There are surely different types of happy.  Many young people do not understand that.  Happiness with a spouse, child, family is the ultimate happiness - stuff is nothing.  But many people never realize that until they lose that special someone, and then all they have is stuff.
To be both of these things one needs to understand gratitude and know what is truly important.
Abundance doesn't always fill the need we have for happy or contentment.
Love, people, quality, gratitude and faith are what will get through the rough days - not all the stuff.

It is never too late to change your ways.  It is never too late to make a start at a financially stable future.
I know the days we live in are difficult.  Folks, this has all happened before and yet here we are.  It will all happen again.  We just do the best we can, plan a little, prepare a little, and still have a nice life.

Living a simpler life does NOT mean doing without or not having fun - not at all.  It just means you think about this and make very divisive and sometimes hard decisions.
It means living a purposeful life.
You choose what is important - and go forward.

I hope this helps someone make a change and gives them hope for a nice future and not just a "live in the moment" type of life.  Help your family.  It takes a village!

What say you?

Sunday, March 26, 2023

Weekly Wrap-Up 3/26

 Happy Sunday to all.  My goodness, here we are almost at the end of another month.  My how time flies.  Soon April will be here, and many of us will be starting and thinking about gardens.  Those of us here in the middle parts of the U.S., know that we need to wait to plant outside for a while.  We can still have frost, snow and cold up through early May.  Mother's Day, has always been the magic date!!!

Today, the sun is shining!!!!  It is not raining, nor is the wind blowing like crazy.  It has been another up and down weather week.  Yesterday we had wind gusts of 50+mph.  Rain and more rain this week - ugh!  The back yard was a lake yesterday morning, after all the pouring rain from overnight.  Most is now gone - but it is a muddy mess.  I had a couple of really big limbs down!  One was a couple inches across at the base and was probably a good 10' long.
It is still every stinking Friday - that we have a nasty weather event.  Cold, wind and snow or rain - every Friday for almost 2 months.  They are predicting the same for this next Friday!!!!!

I know the saying about April showers - but I think we started early here!!!
I will say the grass is so very green and growing!!!!!!  It really needs cut in some places - just too wet and muddy out there now.

This week has been much of the same.
  • Cleaning and de-cluttering galore!!!  Drawers, closets, pantry, basement, etc.  
  • I have found some things that help in other areas.  I found a couple great scrapers that will help with the continuing wallpaper saga.  I found 2 boxes and an 8 pack of Kleenex in the med closet.  I know I got those free years ago - and just stuck them back for in case!
  • I got rid of REALLY old herbs and vitamins (really old). 
  • Paid all the items on hand
  • Made a new batch of seasoned rice/pasta mix to have on hand
  • Found and used some items in the deep pantry - partial jars - blended together (dry goods).  Found a gifted mix for chocolate pound cake which I made and shared.
  • Used some older buns for dinner (from frig).  They were a bit stale - so I toasted and they were great
  • Unplugged all the outdoor water bowls for a few days.  Saves a little on electric.
  • Got to air the house 1 day
  • Picking and clearing sticks and trash from wind (when it wasn't raining!)
  • I did run to Kroger Friday (4X gas points on Fri.).  I got some on sale fresh asparagus, Cara Cara oranges - 3lbs. 2.99 (they are almost red & super sweet), peanuts for squirrels (cheaper than feed store), and 1/2 gals. of ice cream.  It was on sale 1.99 half and I had .65 off coupons - so got 2 for 1.34 each.
  • Froze a couple helpings of leftover corned beef for other days!
  • While out - I ran to the bank and got my cash 'allowance' for the next couple months
  • Using what I have for meals and cooking from home
  • Just doing all the normal stuff we all do
Meals this past week:
Broc./Caul./Mushroom and corned beef chunks over rice
Grilled 3 cheese sandwich and tomato soup
Hard tacos
Braats on buns (toasted) and side salad
Mixed bean soup (freezer) over rice
Eggroll bowl
Beef and cheese jazzed up nachos

So there you have it.  Just the same old, same old.  De-cluttering and working on the JUNK!  Ugh!!
What have you all been doing?  How was your week?  We had some good conversation this week - look forward to the coming week and hearing from everyone.

May you all be safe and well, and I pray your coming week is a great one.
Blessings from my humble little home to you and 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.  Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and turn away from evil.
Proverbs 3:5-7

Dear Lord, Yes please guide us each one to do the right and good things.  Help us to have faith and know that You are in control.  Guide us to not follow men that can lead us astray, but to follow You and Your absolute word.  May we each do good, to help another.

Thursday, March 23, 2023

My Tip and a Thought

 Happy Thursday to all.  It is a warmer morning here, but much rain in the forecast and cooler temps a coming!
Today I would like to mention a little tip to help save your money for posterity!  We are in times (and have been), that a lot of people keep cash on hand at home.  It may be for emergencies, monthly allowance, or just whatever.  No one needs to know WHY, but many of us do keep cash on hand for various reasons.

My point I am going to make is - you may be alone or there may be two of you in your home - but what IF something disastrous happened?  I don't like to talk about this point - but someday, someone will be clearing out our homes.  LET someone else KNOW that there is cash in your home, and an approximate place to look (you don't have to tell exact location).  Those people cleaning out a home - may just toss everything (cringe), others go through things.  Someone needs to know where abouts cash may be, important papers, account information, wills, etc.
I know none of us like thinking about these things - but you don't want your cash thrown out to the trash or SURPRISING someone at Goodwill!!!!!!!!

I am in the process of making some lists of information for my executors/kin.  Things they will need to know.  I sure don't want to see all that Glen and I worked for, not go where we want it to, or to be forgotten.
**You all know who you can trust - so that is just good sense.

OK - that is my PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT of the week!  Just prepare!

This is my thought.  It seems we are forever trying to change ourselves - never happy.  We are too big, too small.  Hair too curly or too straight.  Need make-up or don't.  
That is OK - we all do it!!!!!  I know I do.  I still color my hair some, I do wear make-up when going out, I like to look nice.  It is just human nature.
What we need to remember is that - no matter what we do - we are still a creation of God and that is beautiful!!!!!!
Never let others make you feel less of yourself (I think that has happened to most of us too).  We are good and capable, and we are worthy!

Look around at nature - so diverse and unique.  Everything!!!!!!!  God is a wonderful artist and creator.  It all has a beauty and essence and reason.  God didn't just dilly dally with things for no reason - there is a reason.  You are part of the reason.

So I just wanted you to know - you ARE loved, you ARE appreciated, you ARE enough.
Never give up, just keep moving forward - no matter how hard it is.  It gets better.

Have a wonderfully blessed remainder of your week MY FRIENDS!

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Using Old Groceries to Make New Groceries

 Morning all!  While I have been cleaning and sorting and organizing, I have come across some forgotten items that needed to be used.  Well, why not get creative and make something new?  Which is just what I did.
As most know - rice and pasta last and last.  There may be 'best by' dates on them - but if kept cool and dry and protected - basically they last for years.

I came across some pieced vermicelli pasta I had vacuumed sealed a long while back.  Well, it was time to get used.

I made a new jar of Rice A Roni from scratch.  Knowing what is in it makes me feel good.  It tastes better, and well, heck fire - basically free.  I had everything in stock - so got a half gallon jar mixed up!!!!

You can use whatever long pasta you have and just break it up (a baggy and a hammer) - or you can get this pre-pieced pasta.  It is like a $1 or less a bag at the store.  Just the perfect size.  works good in soups as well.
Yep, using my Tightwad Gazette recipe.  Book 2 - page 123.  There are a lot of good easy homemade recipes in that section (pages 121 - 123).
There are recipes for cream of soup, seasoned salt, stuffing mix, taco seasoning, onion soup mix, etc.
Love me some Amy frugal recipes!!!!

My half gallon jar is basically full.  I made beef this time, and I usually have chicken flavored on hand as well.  You just make it like the box mix.  1 cup of mix to 2 Tablespoons of butter - brown pasta a bit - then add 2 cups water and simmer until done.
It is nice to have this on hand.  It is very tasty and can add a lot of flavor to a bland meal or add to meat for a great pan meal.

3 C uncooked rice - I do half and half pasta and rice for a real Rice A Roni experience
1/4 C dried parsley
6 Tbsp. instant beef or chicken bouillon
2 tsp, onion powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. dried thyme
Mix it all together and store in an airtight container.  I always shake the container up before measuring out a helping for cooking (things settle)

I am organizing as a I clean out - so I am trying to use up those odds and ends in new ways.  I love making my own convenience foods.

Cleaning, sorting, and decluttering can be all kinds of things - not just getting rid of stuff!  It can be making new things and using things in a different way.
You using groceries to make new groceries this week?

What are your favorite ways to MAKE groceries????

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Spring Flinging!

 OK, it is officially spring (so they say).  Time for this gal to get her bum a bobbin'!!!!!  Just had no oomph or get up and go lately.  I had such big plans - then poof!  Soooooo, yes, I have started that spring fling thing!  Decluttering and getting rid of stuff.  I have started small (so as not to overwhelm me!).  LOL
My momentum yesterday was great!  I did smaller jobs and flitted around a lot.  That keeps me from getting bored and I do more.
You know that adage about 15 minute jobs?  Work on something for 15 minutes, then do something else, then on and on.  It makes a job not seem so daunting.  Works for me!

Any way, I got started.  I hope that I can keep motivated and continue until I make HUGE progress.  Each day of decluttering is just one down - and things out - so it all works out!

I started with drawers!  Undies, junk, Glen's, and on and on........  I then went to cabinets. Then the overstock pantry.
Hey, it is a start.

Some may find it odd that I mention Glen's drawer - it has been almost 4 years.  Well gals, let me tell you - there is a huge amount of his presence still here.  It is OK!  You don't have to rush through things and get rid of everything that reminds you of someone.  I still have tons of stuff.  I like being reminded that he was here.  He is never gone (totally) in my opinion.  Remembering is keeping him alive in my mind.  I KNOW not everyone feels that way - no problem.  We each handle things differently.  I just wanted some of you to know that YES, it can take a fair amount of time - and it is OK.

I did clean out his bedside drawer.  My goodness, the stuff he kept in there!  I got a few chuckles!  As bad as I am about keeping stuff - let's say he was worse!!!!!  LOL!  I am thankful for him still giving me a laugh or two!

I got rid of a bunch of my old undies.  WHY did I feel that I needed to keep these items?  Geesh.  Not even good for rags - just plain old worn out!  I did keep some stretched out socks to use for cleaning and for my dust mop.  They went into the cleaning bag.

I think we all have a junk drawer.  I have always had one.  Well, sometimes two or three!  I was pretty much down to one.  What a mess!!!!!!!  The drawer was full of stuff - junk - now trash.
This may still look junky to some - but believe me it is all cleaned up!  I didn't take a 'before' as I was ashamed to!  It was crammed full of 'crap' - you couldn't see the divider tray at all.  Just loaded with stuff.  I threw most of it away - I mean how many twist ties or rubber bands does a person need?  I have my kitchen scissors and all my small little hand tools in there.  Different kinds of tape - I am always needing tape.  Markers for marking up freezer containers.  A few nuts, screws and nails, small measuring tapes and chip clips.  It just looks so much better!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Today is trash day - and I managed to get rid of much for the trash pick-up.  I got the cleaning bag (cloths & rags) started again.  Lots of little stuff trashed and out of the house!  Out is good!

It is going to be warmer the next few days - but we have a lot of rain coming our way.  No better reason to stay in and clean out.  I just want to make a bigger difference in the STUFF this year.  I am always getting rid of things - but I see no real difference.  I want to SEE a difference.

So as I air the house the next couple of days, I will AIR my house of junk!!!!!!  I am so over looking at all this stuff.  I know some of you feel that way as well.  Let's do this together!!!!!!
We can keep encouraging each other and maybe keep the momentum going!
Good luck to those on the declutter journey.
Wish me luck!!!!!

Happy Spring!!!!!!!

Sunday, March 19, 2023

Weekly Wrap-Up 3/19

 Happy Sunday everyone.  The last day of calendar winter!!!!!!!  Spring starts tomorrow.  Sure doesn't feel like it this morning!  It is 18*F here at the moment.  Our temps have been very cold and windy and full of flurries the past couple of days.  YUCK!  This coming week sounds to be much better.
I figured it would get cold and icky - it is March Madness time - basketball tourney - and it always happens!!  It really never fails in my area.
Also, it was very chilly, windy and wet on St. Patrick's Day - that usually happens as well.  Those poor folks who do the parade and those watching always get so cold.
My daffodils did great most of the week - then after Friday night temps - they went all droopy.  Done for this year!

I have had another fairly quiet week.  Just didn't have a lot of oomph!
  • I did do another yard pick-up at the first of week.  Sticks and more sticks
  • Changed batteries and the furnace filter this week with the start of the time change - it is a good reminder time for that.
  • Taxes are done!!!!!!  I was going to do myself, and decided to let the company do them again - they are responsible if there is a problem!  It is a family operation and been around for 50 years.  Not sure how it keeps happening, but I am getting a really NICE refund from Federal, and I owe state $40.
  • Had an old friend from my work days come by for a visit this week.
  • Ran to the library while out (directly across from tax place)
  • Ran to Aldi that day as well.  Hadn't been there in a while.  Got fruit and fresh veggies only.  Saw eggs for 1/99/doz.
  • I received a lovely card and a gift from a reader.  I was so humbled.  Thank you Hilo!
  • Just doing all the regular stuff we all do
  • Eating from home and using leftovers
Weekly meals:
Fried shrimp, baked potato, small salad
Beef Manhattan - yum
Chipped beef gravy over toast
Homemade pizza - 2X
Corned beef and cabbage
Rueban sandwich, chips
                                                 Beef Manhattan - used meat from freezer

I was talking with a friend this week and we both agreed we have been living a boring life for a while.  Just no oomph, mainly because of weather.  I am making myself a promise this week to get a fire lit under my bum and accomplish a lot.  Here's hoping!!

How was your week?  Are you getting ready for Spring??  Silly question!!!  Have you found any great bargains?  Let us know what is going on in your life.

I pray that you are all safe and healthy.
Blessings from my humble little home to you and yours.

For with God nothing will be impossible.
Luke 1:37

Dear Lord, Thank You for all your gifts and blessings that we receive each day.  Thank You for helping us through our darkest days and gifting us with brighter days and promise for the future.  We know that through You, all is possible.  Prayers for all people of this world and for peace for all.

Thursday, March 16, 2023

Fun Mail and A QUESTION for You

 Morning to everyone.  I want to share something I have gotten the past couple of months from Kroger.  You might want to check with Kroger or its affiliates to see if you can get as well.  I will list the email info they have on the brochure.  It is great - full of inventive ideas, recipes, coupons, and tips.  A fun read!!

I have started receiving this and monthly coupons (separately) that are chosen according to past purchases.  (this mag also contains coupons).   I never got them before - only after I got a new Kroger card last summer.  Mine was very old, and I couldn't even load digital coupons.  The new one gives me more opportunities and all the points I had on the old one also transferred.  So, you might want to check out getting a newer card!!!!!

How fun?  I get some fresh new ideas from the magazine.
The email on the magazine  - or there is a phone of 1-800-576-4377.
There is another address for online exclusives - videos, recipes and more.  I haven't checked it out yet - actually just saw it!!! 

Hopefully you can get this yourself if you are not already receiving.

What are you wanting to see and read here?  I am trying to keep up and have fresh ideas - but I feel I am running out of ideas sometimes.  I do not want to disappoint or have people leave because they are bored.  Let me know if there is anything special that you would like to discuss or see happen.
This is OUR blog - we all share - so feel free to give some ideas.

Have a great day all!!!!!

Wednesday, March 15, 2023

It REALLY is Coming!!!!!!!

 Good day my friends.  I know most people are so ready for spring weather.  It sure seems that the weather has been a yo-yo this year.  We had the warmest weather in ages for winter and now days before springs arrival we get some of our coldest!  Go figure.
It is OK - I have seen hard frost and snow in May - thus the reason in our area that they say never plant garden before Mother's Day!!  Daddy always said the ground wasn't warm enough till later in May.  I go somewhere in between!
By the way - daddy always had the biggest and the best garden ever - even planting later.  
Today and the next couple days will be warmer and maybe sunny!!!!!  Then come Friday (again) rain and cold come back!!!
For everything there is a season.  I thought you might enjoy this today.

By: Helen Steiner Rice

Springtime is a season
    Of hope and Joy and cheer,
There's beauty all around us
    To see and touch and hear....
So, no matter how downhearted
    And discouraged we may be,
New Hope is born when we behold
    Leaves budding on a tree....
Or when we see a timid flower
    Push through the frozen sod
And open wide in glad surprise
    It's petaled eyes to God....
For this is just God saying --
"Lift up your eyes to Me.
And the bleakness of your spirit,
    Like the budding springtime tree,
Will lose its wintery darkness
    And your heavy heart will sing" --
For God never sends the Winter
    Without the Joy of Spring.

         The world will reawaken in God's time.  It always does.  Just be patient and have faith.

The same works for each of us.  There is darkness and gloom and weariness that gets us down - but faith says - God will pick us up and give us a brighter and happier day.  It doesn't happen overnight - but it will happen.
Never lose faith.  The storms of life are forever changing and so are we.  We evolve and we grow.  Not always as we thought we would, nor is life what we thought it might be.  I do believe it all has purpose - even though we do not understand now.

I love you all.  God loves you all.  Take a deep breath and know brighter days are ahead.
Spring will be here in all its forms SOON!

Tuesday, March 14, 2023

A Subject I Keep Seeing

 OK, today I am going with the flow I keep seeing.  Lately on YouTube I have seen some videos on what the things are that people WON'T spend money on!
Interesting subject, I think.  It can be anything.  It is very different for different folks.  Each and everyone have their own personal priorities and wants and needs.
I have thought about this a lot, and I have a small list - I am sure there is so much more.

Now I must say - when I say "won't" - that is a general phrase for me.  I never know when a circumstance or situation would change that I MAY purchase some of my NO's.  It could happen - life changes.  But, for the most part I am pretty sure on items.

  • Bottled water - I don't buy.  I am fine with my faucet, and I do have a water filter.
  • Packaged ice - I make my own.  I keep plenty of trays - and make ice ahead if I am having company.
  • Anything "designer".  Not my thing!  IF I found something at a secondhand shop - cheaply - that I LOVED - maybe.  Labels mean nothing to me.
  • Weed killer for the lawn.  I imagine many neighbors dislike me - but no, I will not spray my yard with weed killers of any type.
  • Tissues - I use washable hankies or TP.  I can't tell you the last time I purchased tissues.
  • Cleaning supplies - I make my own.  I do buy laundry detergent, dish soap, and shampoo - but they all get watered down and last forever.
  • A pet!!!  Never would I purchase a pet from a store or breeder.  I would pay a fee to adopt from a rescue shelter.
  • Hair care.  I cut and color my hair at home.  I have done this for over 3 decades.  Even before that - I used to perm my hair - and I did that at home as well.
  • I don't shop online.  I don't - but IF there was something I truly needed, I might.
  • If I eat out somewhere (rarely happens) - I won't order pasta dishes!  Pasta is about the cheapest ingredients that I can purchase - so I am not going to pay a fortune for a plate of it!  (just me)
  • Nothing much for full price!!!  I try to get everything I can at a discount, sale, coupon deal, or clearance that I can!
  • I don't like buying a lot of things new - I do love a thrift store, yard sale or upcycling.  I will buy new when necessary - but it will be marked down!
  • I rarely buy paper towels or paper plates.  I do keep some plates on hand for various uses - but they last forever, and I rarely use.  Paper towels were pretty much purchased for kitty yak - now that isn't an issue - so they will last forever.  I have lots of pretty paper napkins I bought years ago for .10 a pack at a yard sale - will never have to buy them again!
This is what I can think of off the top of my head.  I am sure there is probably more.  
I am very interested to see what others say!!!!  I think this will be enlightening and informative.
No judgements whatsoever - we are all different with different needs.

What WON'T you buy?????????

Sunday, March 12, 2023

Weekly Wrap-Up 3/12

 Happy Sunday to all.  It is snowing here at the moment!  Nothing much - just flurries and it will melt before the end of the day.  We started the week warm again - and then come Friday it went bust AGAIN!  It seems every Friday, for the past month and a half - the weather has decided to belch upon us!!!!!  UGH
Oh well - it is still that time of the year.  Yes, things are coming back to life - but we shouldn't get too excited.  There will still be plenty winter ahead, I betcha!

                          Some pretties I cut before they froze.  There are so many outside yet!

It has been pretty quiet here again this week.  I need to light a fire under my bum - I just feel blah when it gets back all icky after some nice days.

My week:
  • I rotated my mattress - top to bottom.  That needed to be done for a long while
  • Tons of laundry.  Did all the bedding, throw rugs and also winter jackets and coats
  • Used very old apples and made an apple crisp
  • Worked out in the yard a lot the first of week.  I cleared a lot more from flower beds, raked up gunk, and moved a lot of the yard decorations to new places.  Have several pots set aside that are bad - to use for drainage/dirt in new pots this spring
  • Got to air the house a couple days - even got my flip-flops out and wore them!!!!!
  • Picked a bouquet
  • Got a call that Fluffy's cremains were back - so went and picked her up
  • I made the sherbet with the orange soda and sweetened milk.  YUM!  I just had 2 cans and it called for a liter of liquid, so I added a cup of orange juice as well.  It tastes soooooo good!  It isn't as smooth and creamy as store bought - more crystalized.  But it sure is tasty!
  • Used leftovers in new ways
  • Just doing general cleaning, dusting and vacuuming - piddling around the house - nothing big
Meals this week:
Leftover stuffed shells and side of fresh veggies
Deluxe cheeseburger
Meatballs with peppers/zucchini/gravy over rice
Dirty rice, chicken and fish bites
Pizza style hand pies
Leftover rice with added shredded beef (freezer) and beans added
Burrito supreme and side salad

I really loved the warm sunny days we had.  I realize how lucky we are here, as so many are still covered up with ice and snow.  Those in CA are just being inundated with rain and snow - so much after such a long and huge drought.  Another, be careful what you wish for!
I hope you are all well and safe.
Give us a shout out and tell us what you have been up to this week.  I love hearing about everyone's adventures and bargains!

Have a wonderful week again.
Blessings to you and yours from my humble little home.

Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and of good courage; be not frightened, neither be dismayed; for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
Joshua 1:9

Lord, Thank You for being with us every moment of every day.  Help us to realize that all the worry in the world, changes nothing for us.  You have us in Your hands, and You will guide us through this life.

Thursday, March 9, 2023

Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice & and Reminder!

 Happy Thursday all!  Today's post is not all that much about frugal as it is about finding great supplies for the pantry.  I love spices, flavorings and dehydrated goods.    Over the years I have found a source that I have gotten exceptional products from.  The place is Spices, Etc.  You can order online.  Or you can call to get a catalog.  

Is it cheap?  NOT so much!
Are products good?  YES

I have so many different liquid flavorings.  I use in jams and jellies, cakes, pies, ice cream, etc.  I have ordered lots of dehydrated goods over the years.  Gallon jars of dried soup mix is a favorite.  It lasts for years and it tastes good and it is ever so important (to me) to have on hand.  I have ordered powders of all sorts.  Not one thing has been a bad decision.

                                                        Powdered products of every type
                                                            Dehydrated veggies and fruits
                       Flavorings like you wouldn't believe!  Some I bet some you never knew existed.
I can sit for hours going through the catalog!!!!  It is just fascinating.  They have about anything you can dream of.

Just thought I would share, as we have so many good cooks here.  Not the cheapest items, but it sure makes cooking a little more fun.

DON'T FORGET - clocks move forward this weekend (for those that have to).  I sure wish that we would leave things alone - but noooooooo.
So make sure you aren't late or early for something!  SPRING FORWARD!

Have a blessed day!

Wednesday, March 8, 2023

What I'm Using and NOT Wasting

 Just a little post about odd ball things that I have been using up instead of throwing out or wasting.  Sometimes just little items make a difference.  It isn't so much about the money (that helps), but I just simply hate to waste things.  I guess that is part of my upbringing!  My folks taught me to not waste and to use things in SOME way.
None of this is earth shattering - just my little ways.

*Using all leftovers

*I had 4 very old apples in the crisper (since fall).  I decided to make a small apple crisp for some sweets eating this week.  It has been wonderful and just hit the spot!

* I used the last of the fresh mini sweet peppers from holiday trays in a dish with meatballs this week and the last two will be used in todays dinner

*I have 2 cans of sugar free orange soda (from Christmas company) and some much needed to use sweetened condensed milk.  Saw a recipe to make orange 'sherbet' with it.  I will add a bit of orange juice too - as it called for a liter of pop -  and 1 can of milk.  Mix together till frothy and freeze.  Stir every now and then while freezing (or use an ice cream maker).  I am making this this week.  You can use any type of pop!  I figure why not?????  Nice little treat!

*I had a jar with dill pickle juice in frig.  I used it this week for restless less on 2 nights.  I have been lucky as of late, and not had too many problems with RLS.  I drank the juice each night and it calmed my legs

*I found a jug of cider in the back - bottom of frig I forgot about.  It got shoved to the back when preparing for company.  It had a 'best by' date of Jan.1.  It is still very yummy - with a bit of a zip!!!  Yep, I am going to drink it all!

*Been saving newspapers for painting and other cleaning jobs.

*Used water from dehumidifier (from basement after rains) in the washer

*I have a couple broken clay pots out in the yard and some broken plastic pots (years old).  I will transfer dirt to new pots I have stored in shed and the pots will be broken more and placed in the bottom for drainage.  Will get re-use of the pots and soil again!!!!

*Used stale buns for toast and garlic toast

* Had just a tiny bit of vinegar left in a jar - put in in my bottle of Dawn w/water added for dishes.  Doesn't it look pretty?  They vinegar aids in cutting grease.
*Moved around a lot of the yard decor this week.  "Re-decorating" the yard and flower beds for zero dollars.

Just odds and ends - using some things in unconventional ways.  It is always fun to figure out new ways for old things.
What have you been using in new ways?  Looking for new ideas!!!!!!

Tuesday, March 7, 2023

Spring is in the Air

 Well, at least it was yesterday!!!!!  LOL
It changes daily.  Yesterday was gorgeous - and I worked outside until I could hardly move.  It was truly wonderful to be out and not needing a jacket.  Heck, yesterday afternoon, I even had flip-flops on!!
Temps the remainder of the week are to be more normal for this time of the year.  Highs in the 40's and 50's.  Got to enjoy those beautiful days when we can.

This happened from Sunday to Monday!  I have several bunches starting to bloom now.  Littles bits of sunshine!  I am always glad to see them, and find it fascinating that my first flowers of the year are always bright yellow jewels.  It just raises the spirits.

I thought I would like to show you some of the birds I see.  If I tried to capture a picture of each of them it would take forever - so I 'captured' some pics from on line!

Click on the pics to enlarge.
No hummingbirds yet - it will be May before they show.  But, they never disappoint.  

I do see all of these out my window!  I have an abundance of sparrow - all kinds of finches - nuthatches chickadees - and lots of Downey and Hairy woodpeckers.  I have a red bellied woodpecker that is so big and pretty.
This doesn't show the pigeons (ugh) - have those too.
The robins are plentiful now, a sure sign that spring is about here.
Blue jays and cardinals come early every morning and the cardinals serenade me every morning when I go out to feed Blackie.  They are out singing before the light of day. The cardinals are usually the last birds I see each day as well.  They feed early and late.
Crows and ravens come now and then and when they do - they come in mass!  The cowbirds and red-winged blackbirds are so pretty, and they are kind of like the robins for me.  They are a sign that warmer weather is near.
I have pairs and pairs of doves.  Love to hear them.

And my angel - she watches over all the yard.  The flowers beds have a lot of green popping up - but there is still so much brown.  Soon!!!!!!!
For all that are cold and in nasty weather - the promise of spring is such a wonder.  The re-birth of the land.  It will happen, it is promised, and it will be lovely.

Be patient and know that the world is slowly coming to life in different areas and at different times.  Kind of like people!  We are each awakened to our journey on earth at different times and through different experiences.

Have a wonderful day!

Sunday, March 5, 2023

Weekly Wrap Up 3/5

 Happy Sunday to all.  Here we are another week gone, and Sunday once again.  The days seem to go by so quickly.  We have been all over the place this week with our weather.  We hit a record high of 76*F on Wednesday and Friday night after the horrible wind and rain storm - we had flurries!
There was so much rain on Friday.  We had well over 2" in a few hours.  Needless to say, I had a lake in the backyard.  It was probably in the top 3 worst 'lakes' I have ever had.  It is pretty much gone now, just muddy.  Boy oh boy, the robins are loving it!!!!!!  Wormies abound!

We have been fortunate by just getting rain and no snow.  We had virtually no measurable snowfall in Feb.  That has happened only 5X in history of record keeping.  I know there are many being inundated by snow.  It sure seems to be the year of weird weather so far!
It looks like this coming week will be pretty much normal temps - BUT - NO rain!!!!!!  YAY! And sunshine!

                                  My very well worn and used Bible I got when I was 10 years old.

Kind of a quiet week again.  
  • I did a stick pick-up 3X this week.  Not just from the wind, but those darned little squirrels.  They are young and trying to make nests - and don't quite have it down yet!  They keep chewing young branches from the trees for their nesting material - and then they drop them!
  • Cancelled my newspaper to a half service.  It is under half the price as before.  I think after a month of this, I will cancel all together.  I just don't read it like I used to.
  • Got my March coupons from Kroger 
  • I trimmed my hair and did a root touch-up
  • Got to air the house a couple days
  • Made OJ from concentrate I had - much cheaper than buying prepared at this time
  • Continuing the wallpaper saga!
  • Did run to Kroger - got bananas and mandarins and eggs for 1.89 doz.!!!  Woop-woop!!!!  Needed very little - actually didn't NEED what I got - but wanted it!
  • Just doing basic deep cleaning and trying to de-clutter some more
  • Cooking from scratch and using what I have
Meals this past week:
Leftover day - taco meat/beans over rice and side salad
Hotdogs and tostada chips & cheese
Cube steak, mac with butter & parm. fresh veggies
Hand pies and a side of fresh veggies
Stew over baked potato w/cheese and sour cream
Chicken strips, rice, stir fry veggies
Stuffed shells and fresh veggies
My easy hand pies.  Used one pie dough and canned stew.  Cut dough in half - add approx. 1/4 can (20 oz.) can of stew.  Fold over and crimp.  Bake until golden.  My it was good.  Ate one and froze one.  Used the remainder of the stew over a baked potato the next day.

How was your week?  Did you get any deals?  How is your weather?  Do anything creative that we need to learn from?
I hope this finds you all safe and well.  Look forward to hearing from you all.

Blessings to you and yours from my humble little home.
Have a fantastic week.

Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that in due time He may exalt you.  Cast all your anxieties on Him, for He cares about you.
1 Peter 5:6-7

Lord, we ask that You help us each one to understand that You have control and that we need to put our trust and faith in You.  Help us to live our best lives for others and ourselves.

Thursday, March 2, 2023

A Thought and a Thing or 2

 Well, here we are in March already.  This is known as the windy month in my area!  Oh my - February was more than windy enough for me!  Tomorrow, we have another wind and rain event coming in.  At least yesterday was beautiful.  We started the month like a lamb - soon to change!!!

Just a little thought - life is short - have some fun!  We can NOT act our age now and then and it is OK!  Stand in the rain, play in the leaves, play the music loud, laugh at your own jokes - just enjoy the day.  No matter what our situations are, there IS at least ONE thing each day to bring joy or a smile.  Grab hold - with both hands!

Elise keeps reminding us, and she is right.  These are easy and fun!

And we drink this!!!!!!  
I remember as a child in the 50's, coming home from a road trip and we were having car problems.  It was pouring rain (that sticks in my mind), and daddy stopped at a gas station - went in and bought a Coke and cleaned the connections of the battery.  Made it home safely!

We covered the casserole thing - now how about soup?  Same principle - no real recipe - just a formula to help one make a great pot of food and not waste a thing!

Click on picture to enlarge for easier reading.
It doesn't have to be made in a slow cooker (crock pot) - it can be done on the stove as well.  There is just an abundance of ideas to use up what we have, and not go out spending more.
Great for those who don't like leftovers - throw them in soup and make something new!

Enjoy this new month and enjoy your day.  Remember to smile and laugh at SOMETHING today!  Every laugh and smile lifts the spirit a little.  That my friends, is a good thing.
Be blessed!

Wednesday, March 1, 2023

THE Story (of family past)

 OK , this is the story of one of my ancestors that I have promised for a long time.  It is long, so grab a cup of something!  I am trying to cut the story down a bit- but there are a lot of interesting tid-bits!!  It is history, not just for me and my family, but also the country.  I hope you enjoy reading.

This is about my 6th and 7th great grandpas on one branch of my daddies family tree.
This is in many historical books.

The Hochstetler's were originated from Switzerland.  In the 1600's some joined the anti-Baptist reform movement.  They suffered pretty severe persecution and in the early 1700's many immigrated to what was to become America for religious persecution.
Jacob (my 7th great), was 26 years old when his family arrived in Philadelphia in 1738.  He, his wife, a daughter and son.
In 1739 they settled along the Northkill Creek on the edge of what is now Burks Co. PA.  They built a log home and farm buildings near a spring.  It seemed they had a good life.  They also helped establish the first Amish Mennonite Church in America.
                                              A replica of what was thought to be his first cabin.

During this time the Delaware Indians inhabited a large portion of PA.  They lived in peace and often traded with the white settlers. 
In 1754 the peace was interrupted when France & England wanted to control the area and that just West of the Appalachian Mountains.  The French and the Indians worked together and defeated a British General in 1755.  Then they began to attack the settlers to gain control.
My ancestors lived in relative peace but tension during a short while.
By this time Jacob and his wife had a young daughter at home and 3 more sons.  The older daughter and son were now off on their own.

On September 19, 1757 a group of young people had gathered at the farm for an evening of cider making.  They left and they family went off to bed.  They arose to a lot of clamor outdoors.  The younger Jacob (Jr.) went to the door and opened to see what was going on - and he was shot in the leg.  He managed to close and bolt the door.  They could see many Indians around the property, but in accordance with their beliefs, they did not shoot! (They believed in peace).  The house was set afire.
They family made it to the cellar under the home.  As the fires started affecting them there, they managed to douse it with the much cider they had in keeping there.  Eventually it got to be too much, and they had to try to get out.  That is when the worst happened.
Young Jacob and the young daughter were killed and scalped.  Momma was stabbed in the heart - a huge sign of disrespect.  She had (according to lore) turned away some of the Indians at some point that were hungry.
Son, Christian, was about to be scalped, when the Indians saw his bright blue eyes and stopped.  He was spared.  They took him and the elder Jacob with them.  They came back the next day and found Joseph, who was hiding, and took him as well. 
The men were allowed to pick up all the peaches they could carry as they were making their way to the Indian camp.  They offered the peaches to the chief, and because of that act, they were all spared the cruel treatment most prisoners were given.  They were then traded to 3 different tribes.

Before they were traded, Jacob told his sons to remember the Lord's Prayer and not forget their German (Swiss) language.  Jacob minded his P's & Q's.  He was finally allowed to go hunting on his own.  He escaped.  He was found some time later, almost dead from starvation, by the British.  He relayed the story and gave them needed information.  After healing up, they returned him to his home area.

As the French & Indian war ended, peace treaties were signed, and the return of all white captures was supposed to happen.  It wasn't quick.  In 1762, Jacob asked the Govenor for help in getting his sons back.  Joseph was returned in 1764.  Christian wasn't returned until 1765.  Both were reluctant to go back to white society.  They had been adopted into the Indian culture and families.  Christian was the youngest when captured, so he had the hardest time.
Finally, both married, and were slowly re-integrated into white society and their Amish community.
Christian converted and jointed the church and went on to become a preacher.

CHRISTIAN is my 6th great grandpa!
Yeah, these were the good old days - NOT!  I cannot fathom what our ancestors had to endure just to survive daily life.  
I find this story so absolutely amazing.  The strength and fortitude.  The faith.  I do believe I have come from pretty amazing stock!!!!!!
I often think about this story and had ONE tiny thing changed - I would not be here today.  What if Christian had not had those blazing blue eyes, or had he rejected the Amish community, or had Jacob not gifted the chief peaches.......... WOW!

It wouldn't surprise me if some of our readers here, were related to me in some way.  Jacob has tens of thousands of descendants today. 
I condensed this down a bit - but it has been related in many history type books.  Just think this all happened BEFORE this land was even a country in its own right!
That is a little of my ancestors' history.  I am very proud of where I have come from and the people and their lives.  I think bits of that DNA is surely passed on and helps to make us what we are today.

Thanks for reading.  Hope it didn't bore you!