I took down the Valentine's Day decorations and put up a few springtime things. I get 'decor' at yard sales and Goodwill, and move things around from time to time to keep it a little more interesting.
I started an experiment early last week, but I wanted to see how it would work before I shared about it. I bought a 32 oz. container of plain yogurt. I usually buy the vanilla, but buying the plain means I can add healthier sweeteners, like coconut sugar. It also means I can mix plain yogurt with mayo when I make things like dressings, slaw, carrot-raisin salad, or tuna salad for sandwiches. It cuts the fat a little, adds some probiotics, and so far, no one has noticed. There have been no complaints about the home-sweetened yogurt either, so this is going well!
Bonus! It is hard for us to use a gallon of milk before it expires, so I made a quart of plain yogurt by using the last of the container mentioned above as the starter. I paid 1.89 for the 32 oz. of plain yogurt, but I can get a gallon of milk for 1.99, make a quart of yogurt each time (about every 2 weeks) and save a little more, all the while relieving the 'pressure' to hurry up and drink the milk! I looked online for instructions and followed those. I added a small amount of powdered milk, since I have it on hand and it makes the yogurt a little thicker/more nutrient dense. If I didn't have that on hand, I would not worry over it. I let it sit in front of the wood stove, where it was warm and it set up very nicely.
Taffy ran out of puppy treats, and I didn't really feel like baking up a new batch, so I just popped some popcorn. We pop our popcorn in a pan with coconut oil, so I filled her treat jar before I seasoned the rest for the family.
I picked up some National Geographic Kids magazines for Daughter from a local freecycle page. She has really enjoyed them.
I made calzones, green salads, slaw, a half-recipe size chocolate cake with peanut butter frosting, calabacitas, curried beef stew, some rice, salsa, taco salads, filling for Asian lettuce wraps, (I ground some turkey for the taco meat and lettuce wrap filling) and we had homemade tomato soup I brought out of the freezer. I popped popcorn several times this week and we had it for snacks with fresh fruit or peanuts. For a special Saturday night treat (once every 25 years, hee hee), I made onion rings from scratch.
There was enough curried beef stew to package half of it and freeze it for a future meal. It will make a convenience food on a busy day.
|This peanut butter frosting is not pretty, but it sure tastes good! |
The cake underneath (a new recipe, which fell in the middle - oh well) was dark chocolate.
I had to have some paperwork notarized for a work-at-home job I will be starting next month. We combined errands that day and visited the library and a couple of stores.
I forgot to mention last week that Husband used the last of his free item coupons at Harbor Freight to get some free batteries. We have been able to use those coupons to stock up on batteries, flashlights, tarps, tape measures, gloves...all sorts of items, over the course of time. The newer coupons are for a free item 'with any purchase', and we will use one of those if we are purchasing another item.
When we have a good year in the orchard I make a lot of applesauce, but I also make peach sauce. It's basically the same as applesauce, just with peaches. It is very good as a topping for pancakes, stirred into oatmeal, etc. We have been using it a lot in oatmeal this winter. It helps cool it down and give it a little sweetness and fruity-ness. It costs me very little to make, since the peaches are from our trees and I only put a small amount of sugar and some spices (cinnamon or apple pie spice) into it.
|oatmeal swirled with peach sauce, spinkled with almonds|
I signed up with Blogging for Books. I will request, read and review books from them - expect to see that here, coming soon! :)
I watched the extras on the Downton Abbey DVDs for season 5. I was able to check it out from the library. We also got Big Hero 6 from the library and watched for a family movie.
There were some books on the library sale shelf that I wanted - for $1 each I brought home copies of Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day and Country Breads of the World - 88 of the World's Best Recipe for Baking Bread. That second title has a recipe for Boston Brown Bread (swoon!) and a chapter on the flat breads of India. Woohoo!!
The supermarket sales this week were not too exciting, so we mostly picked up produce - green grapes and broccoli for .98/lb., onions for .50/lb and apples for .77/lb. Since I used the last of the milk making yogurt, we picked up a gallon at the store ($1.99)and I got some unbleached flour at King Sooper. We also picked up some items at Costco - parmesan, muenster, strawberries - much of which will last us for far more than a single week.
And....drumroll....the craft room is done! Now...by 'done', I mean arranged, and organized, in our unfinished basement. It may not look like the ones you see all over Pinterest, but it is really functional, and I am overjoyed! I purchased the glass-front cabinets second-hand on a local facebook page. After I got the room organized, I sold off the items I was previously using for storage, and ended up a little bit ahead. It is a nice size space, but not as huge as it looks in these photos:
|The work table is big enough that I am using one side, while |
Daughter has her school computer and books on the other side.
|Stamps and fabric and yarn - oh my!|
|The treadle sewing machine is under the woven cover. I also have|
an electric machine I can use at the work table.
|Soapmaking supplies (except the crock pots, which don't fit), are in the wood cabinet. |
I have lots of storage and room to work!
How was your week? Did the weather keep you home? How did you make do, spend less and save more? Leave a comment, if you please!