Sunday, August 2, 2015

Our Last Week of Summer

Hello, Dearies!!

Can I just say something?  This past week has been a week when I am grateful that, for us, frugality is more or less a habit.  I am glad that I didn't have to put mental energy toward checking prices, making do, saving more, because for me, this last week was a rough week.

Before I turn this into a pity party, I want to say that we are very, very fortunate.  We are healthy, we have all we need and more, and best of all, we have one another.  Still...there is a lot of change happening around here right now, and in general, I am not a huge fan of change.  Several of the changes are really not mine to discuss, so I won't mention them...those of you that know me personally are aware of those.  So my partial list includes helping Daughter get ready to start school away from home.  She is excited, and I am too, but it's going to be different, and she and I are used to spending nearly all our time together.  I know we will both be fine, but it will be an adjustment.

I have also been watching as the high-voltage power lines that we fought to the best of our ability were installed in our community.  We learned of a neighbor's passing, and saw the 'for sale' signs go up on that property, and learned that at least two more properties here will be changing hands in the next little while.  I helped a friend move, too.  She did not move 'away-away', but further away, and in a direction I don't often get to go.  One of my chickens died.

You know...I think it's the number of changes that's getting to me, not the individual changes themselves.  The end result is that I'm whiny and I want chocolate and soda.  Do they make chocolate soda? that I have that out there, I will admit that I didn't make good notes this week.  I will say that we still watched for items on sale and bought things as we needed them.  Our Costco card expired at the end of the month, so we made a last cheese-and-dried-seaweed run, hee hee.  We accepted some fridge and freezer items from my friend that was moving, which was very nice of her, and I stocked up on string cheese and trail mix, both of which were on sale and had coupons to go with.

The friend that moved is downsizing some.  She blessed me with a bag of clothing, an office chair I am using in my craft area, a couple of area rugs and some plant cuttings, among other things.  We borrowed books and media from the library, and I subbed for a few hours one day too.  We sold some items we no longer needed on a local Freecycle page.

I put out some 'wanted' posts on those same Freecycle pages and I have gotten all the uniform items that Daughter will need for school.  I have the size she wears now and the next size up.  I was able to get 12 polo shirts, a sweatshirt, a hoodie and a knit sweater, all with the school logo already embroidered on them, for a total of $24.  Since it costs over $7 per item to get the logo embroidered on, I am very, very happy to have gotten these!  The students can wear slacks, jeans, skirts or shorts (there are specifics about length and not having holes, etc.), and she has those items on hand, so I think we are set for school.

We have been having smoothies lots of days at lunchtime.  This is helping me use the prolific kale from our garden, along with some frozen fruit that has been in my freezer while.  The frozen texture and temperature is really nice on a hot day.  Saturday night, Daughter planned and helped cook supper.  She got the recipes from a book she borrowed from the library.  We had herbed chicken, mashed potatoes with parsley and garlic, glazed carrots and a peach cake.  She helped a lot and did a great job!  She helped gather ingredients, including fresh herbs from the garden.

The garden is producing lots of green tomatoes.  I've told them it's fine if they want to start ripening now, but so far, they are staying green.  We are getting lots of kale, and we picked our first zucchini this week.  The green beans are coming in too, and I expect to be canning green beans in another week or so.  My lettuce is bolting (to be fair, it is August), so I'm pulling some each morning for the chickens and will re-plant this week.  I am so happy in my garden this summer....everything is growing well and I feel like I'm supplementing our food supply with good, fresh, healthy foods.  Oh, and there are carrots!  I like to wait and pick them after first frost, but I think we will have a nice supply of them for fall/winter.  It's so fun to grow our own!  Cucumbers are forming too, and the herbs are all doing well.

I cleaned out our bunny barn this week, and it looks really good.  It has me motivated to get to the other two sections soon, because it's so nice to have it clean and orderly.  It wasn't terrible, but it was dusty - the pressure washer made everything look really nice.  Oh...and before I forget...we have finished our summer reading programs, so we returned the baby bunnies to the gentleman we 'rented' them from...with the exception of the little runt.  She is Daughter's new little friend, and she's a very sweet little snuggle bug.  I'm hoping we can train her to do a few tricks for next year's programs.

Mrs. Patmore was shorn not long after this photo was taken - now, she looks like a lamb!

Mrs. Hughes was also shorn.  There to the right, you can see little Pepper in the cage next door.

Well, that sums up my week.  Thanks for letting me whine a bit at the beginning.  I hope your week has gone well.  What did you do to spend less, save more and make do?  Leave me a comment so I can learn!


  1. I think some whining is in order for you. Too much. I hate that you are getting those power lines in your neighborhood. We have them near our house at the lake. They are up over a rise so we cannot actually see them but they cause me to feel nervous and not be able to sleep unless we use a whole house EMF protector. It makes all the difference for me. That is great that you could get all of get all those uniforms for so little. Praying for you through this change for sure.

    We have just not been spending unless it is a real need since we are still working through our debit card breach. I don't mind since it is so hot that I just would rather stay home anyway.

    We continue t sork on many repairs n our home in hopes of downsizing. Saturday we found that half of the north end of our house needs to be resided. We are looking for someone to do this for us and we will do the rest of it. The rest of the house is just the bottom 2-5 boards. Hubby finished the garage end on Saturday On the way home from church on Sunday we made a stop for the few supplies we need for the rest of the work we can do.. Our neighbor boy helper came and worked for us on Saturday. We are very thankful to have his help as it allows us to do things like the siding instead of yard cleanup.

    Menus are made for the week and I don't think we need anything. We will travel five hours to visit our oldest son's family this weekend. They have a new house that we have not seen.

    Have a good week everyone!

    1. Thanks, Lana. I have never heard of an EMF protector, so I will look into that. The lines are about 500' from our home, and I see houses that are much, much closer to them than that. I think that a lot of it is that they just don't fit with my 'country living' to speak. :) I know that you are working hard on your home - I honestly think that maintenance and upkeep can be harder work than new construction sometimes! I hope everything goes well with that...and I hope the debit card debacle is resolved for you very soon!

    2. The EMF protector we use is from Safe Connect. It just looks like a plug in night light. It does the trick as it works through the wiring on your house. We just have one but we are not near power lines here at home. We just use the one at the lake but that house in only about 1000 sq ft. They are pricey at about $100 but it is important to protect yourself. I am so sorry. That would be a nightmare for me.

      We are seriously thinking new house when we downsize. I even have a plan I like. This house is just one project after another and it never ends anymore at the age of 36 years old. It will be easy to sell because it is such a fabulous house. Think real hardwood floors and French doors and crown molding and wood ceiling beams. We bought it for way below market value but we are ready to go!

  2. I picked, and ate, my first ripe cherry tomato this morning and my first cucumber. This is my first vegetable garden in well over 20 years. I put in a few plants among my flower garden. I planted two types of tomatoes, bell peppers, green beans, and cucumbers. Baby steps. I may try more plants next year. It's been fun!

    1. Sounds like a lovely garden, Dawn! I think it's better to wish for a little more garden than to be overwhelmed by too much! My cucumbers are teency, but I'm keeping watch, hoping they are ready to pick soon! I hope your garden continues to bring you joy.

  3. I can so empathize with you one the changes. I am exactly the same way. Even small changes, when I have to deal with them at once are wearing to me. I will be praying for you and your daughter through this transition. I can guess some of your concerns and also know there will be many good and fun things. Having just had a daughter graduate from a private Christian school and with another in public school, I can honestly say no situation is perfect (including homeschool), so I feel you have to just stay open to the best situation for the child, family and time period, exactly as you are doing.

  4. Laura

    YES there is such a thing as chocolate "soda", it's called a Yoohoo! Get some and get them really cold for a treat.


  5. Laura, I love your posts. I followed you from ph. Do you mind sharing the recipe for the peach cake?


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