Sunday, May 22, 2022

done

 Ordered Solar Pump of deep well and paid in cash saving 3% ($225.00) by paying cash.

Hubby went to pick up Son2's cabinet that F had finished and found out our grandfather clock was finished. So I finished moving wardrobes over to the other side of the room for now to put the clock where it was going to stay. F came with Hubby to unload it  and set the time including having it go silent during the night and winding it etc. He also picked some asparagus ( almost done with it). We also made the final payment for the clock.


F also helped Hubby load Son2's cabinet into the back of our truck.

Next day we took cabinet to Son2's, spent time with him, his lady and her daughter and Son2 bought us  lunch at a local restaurant and then gave us a gift certificate for our local Chinese restaurant. 

On the way home we did some errands and then ate leftovers for supper.

Sunday, I updated the "down grid spreadsheet." Since we spent less than we budgeted for the solar pump, I moved it over to the odds and ends needed for the wood stove like chimney thermometer, ash bucket, companion set that has shovel, brush etc. through Amazon. Used my cash back points, a discount and a coupon saving 50% of that costs. 

Any amount that is not used gets moved to what still needs to be paid for.

I caught up the laundry and used the clothes line. 

I worked on #1 deep freezer in the basement. It's not in as bad as shape as I thought it would be. Vacuum packed food is in good shape, freezer bag stuff has a lot of ice crystals :(   

I will work on organizing it better and having it inventoried by end of the month and a good defrosting/cleaning. Only 2 more to go after that one.

We used the gift certificate at the Chinese restaurant and got enough for 4 meals. SO no cooking next 2 days. 

Monday I have a medical appt that is 2 hrs. away, we will drop off stuff to Daughter 4, and two of the grandsons. I need to call water softener company to deliver softener salt. 

Tuesday we have chiro( we have a credit at Chiro so that is a free) plus drop off to 2 places of donations, and Menards as I need a food grade bucket with Gamma lid. We will use rebate for that cost.

I will be redoing the finances to stay on task to pay for wood stove, chimney and propane come August. 

Blessed Be

Stay safe

Pray for peace

 

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Frugal moments

 Furnace has been doing short cycles. Our HVAC guy suggested new thermostat. I love the new one as I can read it from across the room and don't have to touch it to see what the temperature is. BUT that didn't solve the problem. Another HVAC friend suggested we check the intake and exhaust pipes and we found a birds nest in the intake. We thought there was screens on the ends but if there was, there isn't now. Hubby got the nest out and let our HVAC guy know and to see how to make sure nothing got sucked into the line and to stop it from happening again. Our HVAC guy doesn't charge for calls or texts for information (we had one that did).

Since our weather has been mid 70s to almost 90 and then down to low 60s. I turned the schedule off on the furnace and only run it when it gets down to 68 unless the sun is shining and it's around noon. After noon we get a lot of sun from the French doors in the kitchen/dining area so we don't bother to turn the furnace up. The house heats up by a good 3-5 degrees.

I have started checking as Hubby forgets to turn the ceiling fan off when he leaves the front room.

I am monitoring how much rain we get. If we get an inch of water in 7 days, I do not water. M sent over 8 red oxheart tomatoes and 4 goat bag tomatoes. Last year both varieties only took 1 tomato to fill a pint jar. I have never seen a tomato get that big.

Asparagus is almost done. We have a year's supply between the freezer and the pickling of them. We have shared with E and M and 3 other families. We both are tired of having asparagus every day. Even M said her family is getting tired of asparagus. 

Chives, garlic chives, spinach and rhubarb are ready also. 

Peas, strawberries and blackberries are blooming.

We have limited how much ice we are getting in our glasses. I told Hubby if he had ice still to not dump it in the sink but in the dog's water bowls. He mentioned he probably didn't need to get that much to begin with. Charlotte, our dog has one water bowl in house and one on the kitchen porch. Out of habit I have always did this. It wasn't until the other day I saw him dumping his ice in the sink before putting the glass in the dishwasher that I realized he wasn't.

I am using the family size tea bags to make hot tea (water kettle ), then letting it cool for ice tea... both of us are starting to just drink it as room temperature. I also use the bag a second time and just let it steep longer.

MEALS

First we had Arby's thanks to an Amish family Hubby did some message running for. 

From the pantry:

bacon, eggs (free from M) and asparagus. 

cheeseburger with spinach instead of lettuce , last of the French fries, asparagus 

smoked sausage with fried onions , mac and cheese, asparagus

leftover mac and cheese with spinach salad

pork chop, rice and veggie mix of onions and bell peppers

leftover porkchop, rice, onions and bell pepper turned into stir fry.

Last of turkey and ham lunchmeats into tortilla wraps.

pancakes with homemade peach pie filling instead of maple syrup( from M), eggs(from M), homemade potatoes O'Brien.

 I had some friends give me a heads up  about a possible salt shortage..

https://www.tridge.com/news/celestun-producers-forecast-salt-shortage-by-2022#:~:text=Surely%20by%202022%20there%20will,one%20of%20the%20main%20producers.

I am not out but will be by mid summer instead of waiting I priced my local stores and then a couple over in another area that one of the kids live in and Amazon was the cheapest. I made sure I have canning/pickling salt, sea salt and table salt. I also ordered pepper as it is the last spice I have on my list.

I can not find 5 lbs. bag of yellow corn meal. I even asked a couple bulk stores. they said it's on order but said they were iffy because most grains that are coming in are on a limited bases. I found some on line and ordered it. I am down to 16 oz of yellow corn meal.

Unless I get speltz (Amish spelling) which I can get locally , my grains are or will be in stock by the end of this month.

I had a friend give me an e-gift card from King Arthur that I used. I only paid shipping.


Update on get it done list

Highlighted in green means it is done completely.

 Stay focused on saving for Grid down items (stove and pipe and solar water pump especially) started on

Stay focused on saving for winter propane. Hoping we got enough to make it to Oct 1st when we get winter fill... going to be close and depend on cold days. 

Continue to do deep cleaning (good for rainy days) Bedroom and front room completely done. Age is definitely slowing me down LOL

Clean outside front room windows so Hubby can put on full size screens. All the rest take  adjustable window screens. 

Install front room window screens (Hubby)

Finish washing summer bedding and put on beds

Finish washing summer curtains and hang up

Finish washing summer furniture throws and put on furniture

Wash last of winter bedding and put in barn

Wash last of winter curtains and put in barn Sitting in mudroom as Hubby said he would take them out... 

Wash last of winter furniture throws and put in barn

Wash summer clothes and put in drawers

Pull winter clothes and put in barn.

Finish planting the garden by Memorial day. Plants are in, sweet potatoes, the last of the potatoes and root veggies are not.

Take grow cart to barn.

Take grow lights to barn

Clear garden shed completely. 

Repair garden shed floor and add ventilation. (Hubby)  cancel ventilation since it will remain garden shed.

Load firewood into garden (now wood) shed. Split any that is too big for stove.(Hubby) Might pay a could of Amish kids to help put the wood in the shed. Hubby has decided to store fire wood in barn in the old dog kennel area since we don't use that area for anything. He is slowly moving the cured wood to it. He is putting anything that needs split to the side.

Continue to get wood for winter. E has wood we can use for kindling and it's cured just needs split. J and A both have scraps from making pallets Hubby can buy for $30 a cord (most cords around here are going for $300). They will load his trailer for him.

Store large drying rack in east bedroom 

Unload Hubby's wardrobe in wheelchair bathroom(me) and move to front room( hopefully Hubby but probably me)

Deep clean/ caulk if needed/ install insulation covers on outlets and switches if needed wheel chair bathroom.  Since Hubby is drilling holes in the walls for closet he told me to wait for clean it until AFTER he is done building closet.

Build closet where wardrobe was (Hubby) in wheelchair bathroom

Put Hubby's clothes in new closet. (Should be Hubby but I can guess it will be me)

Remove wardrobe in front room by Hubby's desk (Grandfather's clock will go there) Take to East bedroom (both)

Remover wardrobe in front room by wheelchair bathroom. Take to West bedroom.(both)

Move Hubby's wardrobe that was in wheelchair bathroom to front room by wheelchair bathroom door. ( Probably me but hope Hubby)

Mark off area that wood cookstove will take and space needed around it for safety. (both)

Straighten 1st bay of barn to store garden stuff.

Put garden stuff in 1st bay of barn. Which will clear a lot in the front room. 

Start moving front room furniture around for stove to come in.

MAINTAIN GARDEN 

EAT FROM PANTRY.


Tuesday, May 17, 2022

This and that... saving electric/ mice control etc.


 I am facing retirement LOL... Son 2 has put in his retirement package and just went to the range for the last time. He doesn't think they will send him to annual training. He is hoping to get completely out (normal time out date is 6 months from putting in package) in Sept when he turns 40s. 


First time we have had a Baltimore oriole here. This is a male, the female flew before Hubby could get his phone out. Hummingbird was not happy he was sitting there.

I was asked about storing winter clothes in our barn and mice. One we use Rubber Maid containers that mice are not fond of eating through. Two we have a gizmo called Pest Repeller (Amazon) that have worked wonders. I have noticed hawks and Amish barn cats visit our barn off and on in the back stalls where the horses used to be kept when this was owned by Amish. Off season items are in barn enclosed loft.

Cutting the electric...Hubby asked how I did this also. It's little things

Phantom aka vampire power users is horrible. 

I unplugged all extension cords that had stuff on it but not being used  and power strips that have a on button light that not being use.

Full freezers and not packed to the gills refrigerators do better energy wise.

I unplugged the DVD player in the front room (I would not turn off or unplug cable box or phone modem, most updates are during the night)

I unplugged cell phone charger station and got in the routine of charging the cell phone while watching the news and not leaving it charging over night anywhere. Hubby has started charging his when hauling and only charging in the house when he doesn't haul which is usually Sunday and Tuesday.

I put the second tv, radio, my laptop etc. on a power strip (that does not have a on button light) and turn it off when not using.

We turn the coffee pots warming plates off (yes, pots as we don't drink the same strength of coffee) after second cup of coffee. Hubby cut his coffee consumption in half so that cut that power in half since he is only brewing every other day instead of daily. We don't have issues with leftover coffee. That also cut the amount of coffee having to buy.

I cut the amount of from 4 to 1on night lights ,even though I am using holiday candles that use LED lights. I don't close the curtains completely on the side of the house the security light is. It helps as a night light.

I turned the furnace down, it's propane but has electrotonic ignition so  it's not coming on as much. I stopped turning on the water with my left hand... that's the hot water and 9 times out of 10 I wasn't needing hot water. Propane instant ready water heater , still electrotonic ignition plus it would pull propane. Saving the propane also. In the past week we have used less than 1% propane.

I run shorter cycle of the clothes washer and the dish washer. Don't use the dryer on either, except maybe every 3rd month. I only run full loads in the dish washer. Since I dry clothes on a drying rack or on the clothes line I do laundry daily with cold water.

I put the radio in the barn on a timer other wise all sorts of lights flicker on it while plugged in  and Hubby doesn't think to unplug it or turn the power strip off... pretty electric vampire is what son 2 called it and since it was HIS , he should know.

I told Hubby that within 30 mins. of him getting in his recliner to sleep that he is passed out. I've turned off light by him and tv several times. So now he is trying to set the tv to go off in 30 mins. instead of the 90 mins he was doing and turn off the light as soon as he is done setting the timer. 

Blessed Be

Stay safe

Prayers for peace


Thursday, May 12, 2022

Get it done list for May

Stay focused on saving for Grid down items (stove and pipe and solar water pump especially)

Stay focused on saving for winter propane.

Continue to do deep cleaning (good for rainy days)

Clean outside front room windows so Hubby can put on full size screens. All the rest take  adjustable window screens. 

Install front room window screens (Hubby)

Finish washing summer bedding and put on beds

Finish washing summer curtains and hang up

Finish washing summer furniture throws and put on furniture

Wash last of winter bedding and put in barn

Wash last of winter curtains and put in barn

Wash last of winter furniture throws and put in barn

Wash summer clothes and put in drawers

Pull winter clothes and put in barn.

Finish planting the garden by Memorial day.

Take grow cart to barn.

Take grow lights to barn

Clear garden shed completely. 

Repair garden shed floor and add ventilation. (Hubby)

Load firewood into garden (now wood) shed. Split any that is too big for stove.(Hubby) Might pay a could of Amish kids to help put the wood in the shed.

Continue to get wood for winter. 

Store large drying rack in east bedroom

Unload Hubby's wardrobe in wheelchair bathroom(me) and move to front room( hopefully Hubby but probably me)

Deep clean/ caulk if needed/ install insulation covers on outlets and switches if needed wheel chair bathroom

Build closet where wardrobe was (Hubby) in wheelchair bathroom

Put Hubby's clothes in new closet. (Should be Hubby but I can guess it will be me)

Remove wardrobe in front room by Hubby's desk (Grandfather's clock will go there) Take to East bedroom (both)

Remover wardrobe in front room by wheelchair bathroom. Take to West bedroom.(both)

Move Hubby's wardrobe that was in wheelchair bathroom to front room by wheelchair bathroom door. ( Probably me but hope Hubby)

Mark off area that wood cookstove will take and space needed around it for safety. (both)

Straighten 1st bay of barn to store garden stuff.

Put garden stuff in 1st bay of barn. Which will clear a lot in the front room. 

Start moving front room furniture around for stove to come in.

MAINTAIN GARDEN 

EAT FROM PANTRY.








just rolling along

 

Bought a kraut crock. Got the crock but no lid or weights. Sent email. They immediately sent lid and weights... even  though the lid and weights were wrapped good and the box was not damaged. The lid was broke. I am guessing since the weights could shift in the box, they hit the lid. Company is sending new lid and credited my credit card for the issues. Hubby told me to just pitch it and let it go. Nope that is not happening.

Turned off 3 nightlights.

Turned off all the grow lights (10 bulbs).

Cut the electric bill by $35. BEFORE turning off the lights. 

Washing and drying on yard clothes line the summer bedding for 5 beds. Furniture covers will be next and I am hoping to get the summer curtains done also. I doubt if the warm weather will stay long enough to get the summer clothes done. Might do the winter bedding and curtains before the clothes as they can always go on the drying rack if things turn wet. 

Have plants to go in the gardens. Hubby is not working Friday so that will be planting day.

Son2 had to go out of town, his friend offered to take care of his cats so I did not drive 4 hrs. and lose two days (as I would stay over night) in the gardens. 

I got my back injections on Monday. Instead of eating out like usual we have cheese and crackers and water in the parking lot before driving home.

Tuesday we "pit stopped" at a friends' house to drop off eggs and asparagus then we had 2 doctor appts, drop off of meds to the city police that I don't take any more, stop at Dollar General for 2 graduation cards, furniture polish and heavy duty foil and then went to Texas Roadhouse using a could gift certificates Daughter 2 gave us. We now have enough leftovers for the next couple of days.

Which is good since Hubby doesn't know when he will get home. He was suppose to haul 1 load on Wednesday, got a call at 8 am. and it became 2 1/2 loads. Got another call and it became 4 loads... possible 5 which means part of it will be done Wednesday and Thursday as the company that is getting the deliveries closes at 3 pm. Ran by Amish that has chores to do before supper. Hubby actually likes they are that way because that means he is home by 4 himself instead of 7 as the other company is open to 6 and is an hr. away. T

No groceries bought though we will need milk... Amish selling milk for $5-$7 a gallon. NON GMO, fresh etc. Have to sign a waver to buy it. Some require you to buy a share of the cow. Depends on the laws in that area. I am not spending that at this time.

I am keeping track of costs for the "off the grid" stuff. Keeps us on budget for sure.

AND the get it done list is growing by leaps and bounds.


  


Thursday, May 5, 2022

Happy birthday in heaven

 Daddy would have been 95 on the 3rd


My late husband would have been 72 on the 4th. Out of respect to our oldest I won't post a photo. He died when he was 39 of a heart attack.



Wednesday, May 4, 2022

How our childhood affects our adult lives.

 First I need to share what Hubby did.


This is the small trailer we used to move everything here 4 yrs ago. These are the sides Hubby built for it to protect our furniture. This is  1.5 cord of wood, maybe a bit more but it's not 2 cords. He got it for $30 because the Amish guy wanted it hauled away or he was going to burn it in the field as it's scraps from his pallet shop. Hubby gave the boys that loaded it with him $10.

Hubby grew up on a sharecropper farm. I wouldn't have called it that but that's the term he used. Their bills were paid by the owner and they were able to write checks for what ever else they needed. The "money" came from a loan. IF there was not enough money from the crops to cover the loan in the fall, the owed amount just got rolled over... but it did not affect their lifestyle. The owner they worked for  was the one that had to cover the debt. When Hubby was about 25, he was working for the same owner. It all went down that year. He not only lost his job, but his home. The owner actually moved in to his parents house, as theirs was auctioned off and they moved in with his grandpa. He got married to his first wife at age 21. For the next 10 yrs he continued to get loans and run up credit cards. When we started dating he owed almost a half of a million and was losing the house his ex and him still owned together. (She had the same upbringing).

I was picking up glass bottle and lose change to help pay off the mortgage at age 4 so we could save for my brother (age 14) to be able to go to college (grants etc weren't common then). At age 6 I was still doing that and doing odd jobs to save for his college. We did it as a family. Daddy and Mother always paid in full for a car. 

We come from opposite ends. Twice Hubby has had to file for bankruptcy because he did not learn as a child to think about the long term cost of something.  The second time was during his divorce and I went with him to the hearings. I had mentioned to his lawyer he needed counseling to learn to handle money. His lawyer brought it up to the judge and the judge did order it.

He still struggles a lot. I run the finances because he forgets to pay the bills, doesn't check to see if the ones on auto pay have ran through. Forgets that the amount at the ATM doesn't show what hasn't ran through (Daughter 2 was bank teller and said this was common and probably worse with kids growing up on a card that they don't put money in for(I am not sure he knows how to keep a checking account register as he won't and I do mean WILL NOT even list a written check in the register let alone something on the debit card.

I know he has talked to his friends and even some of the Amish about his struggles of not really paying attention to money matters. He even brought it up to his parents... and his mom said she now take care of the finances and his younger brother will do it if she dies first. His dad did tell him to think of the costs of not doing something or doing something first. Take a list to the store and if something he wants to buy isn't on the list to call home. He quit his bus driving job 3 months before he qualified for health ins during retirement. He is thankful MIL could put him back on her health ins even though  she was retired.

I am not being disrespectful when asking the price of him doing something or not doing something. I am working with him on where he wants to be in the manner he can deal with it. I think he has ADHD, his doctor is now looking at prodromal dementia aka MCI or does he have both. 

Prayers for peace

Blessed be


Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Hubby feels nagged

 Can't blame him as every time he doesn't do what he should have done I ask how much that choice cost us. Everything he does something he shouldn't have, I ask how much that choice cost us. He is now focused on those issues. AND he wondered why I put everything in a wish list at Amazon for 3 days before ordering. The apple trees, strawberries, grapes, and chives are blooming. Asparagus is running us over. 

We picked up our 12 hanging baskets and 6 flower pots from B on Friday. I added some small plants to cover what I had that didn't make. Not the only one struggling to get seeds to grow. Three of the local green houses had issues also.

We ordered a Heco wood and coal cook stove 520 series.  

I got glass doors as the wife of the Amish seller said she wished she had gotten the glass doors. I was going to get the warming closet until she told me that she had been burned a couple times leaning in to reach the warming closet. She is my size. It should (ha ha) come in sometime in August. MEAN TIME. We need to get wood to get it cured in time.   We plan to order some coal for heating but use wood for cooking. Will have to clean out the firebox when flipping what we are using.

Firewood especially hardwood (think nut trees) is running $300 to $500 a cord. A cord is 4 ft by 4 ft by 8 ft. We got hardwood scraps from one of the Amish building pallets  4 ft by 4ft by 7 ft for $40. E said he had softwood that was good kindling or a quick fire in the summer for cooking that was cured we could have for free.

The only thing from the grocery store has been a gallon of milk.

I did order vitamins that we were short on through Amazon as it was the cheapest.

We did order a solar cube... that should come in this week.

Hubby is hunting for a solar water pump for a deep well that will connect to the pressure tank.

Amish have let us know that they are switching to spelts from wheat flour.  About half of them now are growing it. It's like whole wheat flour. 

Prayers for peace
Blessed Be




Monday, April 25, 2022

On the not frugal side BUT

 could go under the "grid gone down" budget since it is wind up.

When we had decided  to buy a house we decided to have rewards when the mortgage hit certain goals we would buy something that we wanted instead of needed.  

First one was a restuarant that is expensive (we ate leftovers for 3 days from it).We usually go either for Hubby's bday or our anniversary one or the other not both.

Second one was buying Son2's used motorcycle and sold ours which actually paid for Sons'2 we bought as he only wanted what the pay off was and gave us a bike 10 yrs newer than we had. I guess we shouldn't have counted it as it was a break even purchase/sell LOL.

This is the third one.


I've priced what we wanted (Hubby picky over the wood and I am over the chimes). The prices were running $5000 to $8000... way more than I was willing to pay at this time. Figured we would just get something else CHEAPER on the buy list. 

Hubby found out a young Amish man "F" that just got married and moved closer to us this spring is building clocks so he stopped in thinking maybe a "mantel" clock even though we have no mantel. It's not quite like this one but this was the one he had a paper of. He wanted $2500. The chimes alone are $1000 as he shows the receipt he has so those ordering know he is not padding the bill and it will be exactly what we want, not settle for.  We will be moving furniture to put it in front room around and since we will build a closet in the wheel chair bathroom. 

While there Hubby asked if he clear coated other furniture. He said yes. COOL. As the other Amish guy "H"  that just finished redoing Son2's cabinet that had fell apart needed to have a clear coat and the other Amish "N" that does spray clear coat is the one whose barn burnt so he is already WAY behind on his other work. 

We went back to "H" and picked up cabinet. He mentions he had enough wood left over from repairing the cabinet that he could make a bread, onion, and potato bin and he was willing to do it for $20. He is putting a food grade sealer on it. 




Friday, April 22, 2022

Happy 91st birthday in Heaven



 Mom, it's hard to accept you have been gone for almost 10 yrs . We all miss you. 

We all love you even more.

Thursday, April 21, 2022

Finances

 Our new mortgage is 8 months old...  We started with 360 payments. We are at payment 43 almost to payment 44. 

Hubby has 26 more payment to the work truck, the business pays for it so he figures he won't "retire" from the business until that truck is paid off. So he will be almost 66 when he stops .I don't believe he will stop but that is okay, he is planning it that way.

 We have no other debt.

We pay off the credit cards every month. I am using the cash back from our credit cards to pay for the "grid goes down" items. I put utilities, medical, supplies on the credit cards, then pull the $ from savings as it sits about 3 wks before the credit cards come due from the time our $ comes in for the month. On the advice of Hubby's parents, we did separate when our IRA's come in so we get Social Security one week, my IRA the middle of the month and Hubby's at the last part of the month. 

We have the money in the savings for the propane. Took some work to scrape it up now. Put off the "grid down" buying but it's there so I won't be stressing about it. Put off a couple projects we had planned to do on the house.

Hubby asked for the grocery list... milk, half and half, heavy cream, 6 lbs. of onions that should get me through until ours is growing or I can get the walking onions. They are kinds of squishy in the winter. 

Prayers for peace

Blessed Be

what we are looking to buy for "grid goes down" emergency

Our internet went down and Hubby was thankful he has "hotspot" on his phone as he was in the middle of doing work on the computer for gov't stuff needed for his business. 

Which triggered him to asking where we were at on the "grid goes down" emergency list.

I also found out what triggered him to tell me to stock up NOW instead of this fall. Several of the Amish bulk stores are having issues getting supplies in and it's more than just the ones in Ohio having issues.

I listed the following on our grid down list.

toilet... we have an outhouse, needs some repair this summer , but usable even if we don't get the repairs done. It sits on the septic tank that is connected to the septic tile so it's no going into a hole like my parents and grandparents. I would like two windows that have screens in it instead of a Plexiglas that you move if you want air... then the birds come in if you don't close it.

We have a deep well... Amish have told Hubby what to get to enable us to get water from it. There is a pump that is solar charged that would connect to the pressurized tank so we would have running water in house through our plumbing. You can also "hand" pump it if there is not enough solar. Ohio is #3 of being the cloudiest in the USA.

We have a cistern and a handpump at the mudroom sink. Big thank you to N for leaving us  that when he moved so we could at least wash our hands while doing construction. I use it to water my indoor plants.

I would love an ice house (we would have to buy/build it) but could very quickly convert the pump house to a spring house like many in my family had. 

I would love a root cellar even though I have a basement.

I already can and dehydrate. M and B offered to teach me to can meat when I get to that point. I have canned some meat... mostly beef.

We would need heat plus cooking. Hubby asked Amish and they pointed him to exactly what would do for us. One that has a home the size and layout of ours told Hubby how wood or anthracite nut coal (not the coal I grew up with that was nasty to deal with) it would take a year. Said to make sure we got a reservoir so we would have hot water to wash with. LOL

We have an open floor plan, would need to be able to close down some of those doorways to keep the heat in the primary living areas. I have fabric and extra curtains so I can make that up. Would need more blankets for the beds as the bedrooms would not be heated. Can make quilts from the fabric I have.

I have needles and thread to mend and Mother's old button can that I add to .

I have All Clad cooking pans and some cast iron so I won't have issues there.

I ordered 2 wash tubs to wash laundry or bathe... wringers is on back order. I actually have a wringer washer that Hubby thinks he could hook to solar (got a portable solar for camping bookmarked) to run. Again I think of our ranking on cloudiest states. 

I got 2 wind up pocket watches (Hubby just broke his) and a Big Ben wind up alarm clock that will definitely stay near Hubby because I am well known for tossing them across the room if they are within reach when I am sleeping and they go off.

Hubby is asking about grain mills. Might find someone that would just grind for us as that is common here. He is also asking a young Amish that just got married and is making clocks if he can make a key wind up clock.

I need to learn how to knit/crochet socks etc. 

Hubby said his buddy that is Emergency management for this type of stuff suggested some solar and a wind turbine or moving our windmill to the pump house ... that's on the list but at the end. He felt MY list pretty much covered it since we already use oil lamps and have a big supply of candles. I can get tallow or lard to make candles if needed.

Actually all I did was write down what was at Grandpa's house that only had 2 outlets in the whole house when I was a child. One for the refrigerator and one for the tv in the corner of the front room. There was NO running water, heated and cooked with coal that we got off the side of the mountain that they were mining. Kerosene lamp on ceiling of kitchen and one by Grandpa's rocker in the front room. Aunt Hazel had a small candle for her bedroom. Grandpa slept in was what the dining room. Daddy and I dug outhouse twice. I love mine is sitting on a septic tank connected to septic tile. 

Mother had outhouse, ice box but very seldom ice for it, kerosene lamps, they had running water and the cook stove was coal and had a reservoir on it. 

It helps to keep that knowledge.  

 


Tuesday, April 19, 2022

When you save $$ by NOT doing

 I didn't buy a ham or stuff for an Easter basket. We had ham steaks from the freezer and asparagus fresh from the garden rolled in tortilla wraps. Hubby is trying to lose weight and found he does better with small meals 4 times a day than larger meals. Almost like a diabetic which is good as it runs in both our families. 

We stayed home for Easter and just sent messages as our families seemed to be out and about and we didn't want the kids to have to make choices of what side to see. We have been thanked more than once through the years of not making them make choices. My parents always celebrated off holiday since they had to travel so much for Daddy's side and then when they divorced. Also by staying home no new outfits were bought. Something our parents did every year.

We won't be planting sweet corn or popcorn as I found enough in the 3 frig freezers and the barn freezer I have sorted and organized. Only 3 more deep freezers to clear, defrost and organize. I told Hubby the seed would be best kept for next year.

I won't be getting a top off on the propane. The manager of our propane company looked at our balance and usage and thought if I was careful, we would do better to leave the "balance" until a NEEDED fill. He thinks we might get at least mid June. A fill then would put us in to Nov or Dec. instead of needing a fill in Aug. Keeping us to the lower amount of 4 fills a year instead of 5 plus 100 gallons. That would save us at least $1000 at the going rate. 

I won't be stocking up any more. We should have all we NEED especially since one of the kids who took my supply of lemon lime koolaid has ordered it to be sent to me.  They also are sending Wild berry lemonade for Hubby as they know he gets it when we eat at Wendy's. I do need to replace the "emergency  like grid down" stuff as we used it up through the winter. I am still pricing it out to get the best deal.

I didn't mail the birthday cards because we will be in the area of all the kids on next Sunday due to great granddaughter's 1st bday party. We will be wearing masks. Stamps for all the cards would be $9. That's about half of what the gas is going to be to go to the party where they will be anyways if they aren't working. I can pass the cards to parents if they have to work.

We got the septic tank taken care of. I wrote a check instead of using credit card as he gave 10% discount for NOT using a credit card. He charges 5% to use the credit card since that is what the credit card companies charge him for accepting them.

We didn't eat out. I used leftovers out of the freezer in the airfryer or microwave instead of the stove that uses propane. 

We have several garden beds of painted plyboard needing replaced (4 yrs old). We decided to accept the offer from E to use the slab wood for free *he just wants it gone* for them also instead of using it just for the potato crates. 

We have had snow, graupel (frozen snow) and around freezing temps. Welcome to Ohio in April

Prayers for peace

Blessed be





Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Birthday cards on hold and in the garden

 Because I refuse to write a check and send it in the mail,(several disappeared last year) we told all the kids we would be coming down (as they are over an hr. away) and dropping off birthday cards when we go down for Lizzie Mae's 1st bday, Daughter 4's 1st grandchild.. I'll check to see who is in May and take theirs also. None in June of the kids or grandkids or great grandkids. Hubby's mom is June. 

As our norm we combined our errands with our chiro appt. and we took a grocery list from M for Aldi's. She wanted us to get her 10 pounds of bananas and cream cheese as she always wants 24, with 11 in the family I can understand it. She used to ask for it every month, now it's every 6 wks and a bunch of celery.

First we stopped and made Hubby's truck payment that isn't due until the end of the month BUT we won't be running errands until the day after it is due.

Then we dropped off some old meds to the police dept as they have a box in lobby for that kind of stuff.

Then we stopped at our bank (as they closed the branch here)to made deposit for the business.

Then we went to Menard's and got filters (had to order 1 as they don't carry that size), we got Chi Chi tortilla chips (the only ones Hubby likes), big bag of Fritos (can't find them any where else and we use them for spinach dip or chili) and candy bars that was on sale and 9 boxes of Puffs tissues so we don't need to stock that up any more. Plus got the wood strips to put on the kitchen porch ceiling where the seems of the paneling is gapping. WAS paid in full by rebates. We are good with working the rebate system ... We paid for a grill, smoker, the deck material, kitchen porch material and half of the front porch material with rebates from buying other stuff when remodeling this house.

Then we went to Kroger's fuel to use the points, I had couponed a double points two weeks ago so we used that up. Kroger's just happened to be the lowest cost in the area also.

Then we went to Applebee's for lunch. Got the "bowl" meal, leftovers made supper so it figured $12.50 a meal for the two of us. 

Then we went to Chiro. I still have an out of pocket so we had to pay for both of us.

Then to Aldi's, I got celery, peanut butter, catsup, lemon's ,limes, oranges and onions. Hopefully I won't need to buy onions after this. Hubby got celery and bananas for M

Then we went to Walmart on the way home for M's cream cheese.

We dropped of M's stuff along with the 2 egg cartons I had

Unloaded truck, played outside with Charlotte who decided she needed the box of tissues off the bfast bar (not chewed on but on the couch) and my GasX off the table (also not chewed on but on the couch) means I need to double check to make sure there is nothing that can harm her.  She knew she had been bad... was giving lots of kisses and nuzzling. 

Since supper was leftovers it was a YEAH ME for not having to cook.

Hubby checked his email and found a online lecture about grid failure. A friend of Hubby's is an Emergency Management Director had just been in a seminar for this so was allowed to share it. I asked if this was why he wanted stocked now. He said no , he was hearing that sources the Amish use was not being able to supply them like normal or supply at all. But this definitely made he start thinking about stuff. 





Peas are up (will cover this coming weekend due to 32 degree ). 

Prayers for peace. Blessed be

Monday, April 4, 2022

Hubby, pantry soup, Propane increase more than doubled


 It's my favorite photo of him. He was out on the tractor and turned around to check on something. I was a good 50 ft from him so he didn't realize I was taking a photo.

He came home Friday after hauling hay for Amish and told me we were going to check our stock for everything. He did mean EVERYTHING. He wouldn't say what he heard but he was clear we were going to be totally stocked up by May unless it was something for the gardens. It was worse than I thought in the maintenance stuff (thought we had until Aug  and were out in two areas) and was better than he thought (he is the one that forgot to tell me we needed furnace filters). 

I did several orders at Amazon (covid going around again on our area) and the 12th when we go to chiro we will do a pit stop at Menards for filters for the furnace, water etc. and use the rebates we have to pay for it with mask, gloves and sanitizer in hand. Starting to see limits on a few items

 I went to the grocery store (masked up etc.)and stocked up. I saved 32% and got double fuel points. I picked up ground beef . I made taco meat, ground beef crumbles, sloppy joe, hamburger patties and froze it along with bacon, Canadian bacon and sausage links. Today will be making meatloaf and freezing it on old cookie sheets to make meatloaf patties. Plus meat balls precooked and put in the freezers. I got frozen Gordon's fish patties. We went the Friday the week before for fish dinner at the local restaurant and they didn't get any in. Horrible during Lent.

I spent part of Thursday evening visiting with an Amish lady (my age). She is growing sweet potato starts for the first time in decades. Her youngest son (her husband and her live in the Dawdy (grandpa) house) who lives in the house connected to her is doing potato starts that he has not done in years. They have bought from other Amish that are now trying to feed their own.  She was talking about how cash flow was tight (several medical bills and 3 fires , they share those costs in their church) and how she was making things stretch. Growing more basic foods for storage. She was worried about canning lids ( she uses about 3000 a year for the two of them, remember they can their meat also and eat 3 meals a day) being an issue again. Said they (meaning everyone in her church) had placed orders of lids for twice of what they usually use. Hoping to get a bit ahead. I already have mine as I ordered in Jan. Due to their ages and health she said they eat a lighter breakfast (6 am)  now, just toast and egg and not the white potatoes. Dinner at noon is now their main meal. What ever is left over from dinner becomes pantry soup for supper at 6 pm.. She adds a can of cream soup and maybe a hand full of noodles. She doesn't add broth as that is for cooking noodles without anything. But will thin the soup with water or tomato juice. She makes 1 qrt of the soup and serves it with bread. They are trying to eat healthier foods. She laughed when she talked about going from a 12 inch pie to an 8 inch pie but still cutting it in 8ths. Was an interesting visit.

I got an eye infection, it's a lot better but one of the things doctor told me was to pitch any makeup INCLUDING face cream that I had been using. I knew makeup but didn't think about face cream. Wasn't much to pitch of either.

Water softener company let us know the price of delivery was going up *not a lot* as we have them deliver when they are already in the area so no extra trips. They carry the salt down to the basement also so we don't have to figure out who to ask to do it for us.

Electric company has let us know rates will be going up but they didn't know by how much as they are trying to change some things to off set the increase. We have a co-op.

Propane company let us know that propane has already doubled since last year*it had increased by 30 cents last summer right* and they are guessing that it will hit $3.259/gallon by August. I am thankful we already had insulated well enough to cut it by 2 tanks but STILL I need 2400 gallons $7821.60 plus tax of $567.07 for a total of $8,388..67 IN FULL by Aug. SO that has to be put back out of the budget as we are not pulling from the IRA's for it. I am thankful we have already had an energy audit and I completed most of it. I do have some caulking around baseboards and insulation foam pads on outlets to do yet.


Monday, March 28, 2022

What I am doing??? warnings of shortages

Pond has ice on it at the edges about 6 ft from bank. Not thick so will melt with the afternoon sun. E said the maple sap is still running a bit so he might get a bit more to cook down for syrup.

 Researched making cheese as Hubby really want this ... until I figured out the cost and how much cheese he would have to eat so it didn't go to waste. He decided we would just go to the cheese stores over around Holmes co like the Amish here do. Since he is already over there every other month anyways but I did mention it could be a good day trip for us to get away from the house and we could pack a picnic for lunch.

Dealt with an attempt to hack my phone AVG caught the malware and then a threat to wipe out my computer... Glad Son 2 talked me into getting Norton as they dealt with it on the computer.

Got a list of what the gov't thinks will be in short supply... they are adding to it each day it seems.

Anything in plastic, metal cans or glass. That takes in bottle water, sodas, booze, 

coffee (again that comes in plastic )

Biodiesel

toilet paper

paper towels (I guess maybe feminine products will be next on that list???)

dish soap/laundry soap

Clorox, Lysol etc. wipes 

shampoo and conditioner/deo. 

cooking oils

yeast

oats

cheese* especially cream cheese* after reading how it's made I understand it.

milk (probably all dairy)

sugar

flour and mixes made with flour... pasta, bread, cake, pie crusts... anything made with flour like cereal also... gravy mixes... some salad dressings.

corn ... corn products *corn meal, corn starch etc.

Beef, pork, poultry and eggs. They eat wheat or corn. 

dog food (made with corn, wheat etc.)

Imports will be slowed down most likely also.


Instead of inventorying my pantry, I just wrote down what was missing and how much. I am still working on that and trying to figure out where to get it if we don't grow it.

I ordered toilet paper as I was already told it's next to nothing around around here.

I will get sugar tomorrow when we are at doctor appts and running errands. I will also pick up Vernor's ginger soda, coke and sprite. I usually don't pick that up until closer to July 4th but with shortages looming I will get it now.

I dehydrated the last 2 pumpkins and ground that up for powder. I made apple sugar (dehydrated apple sauce with no sugar).I still have some apples from last fall in the frig to deal with this week.

I ordered a butter crock. Hubby doesn't like "softening" his butter in the microwave and we use real butter. So I ordered what my grandmother used and Nonna used. I went through The Prudent Homemaker site

https://www.amazon.com/Original-Butter-Bell-Tremain-Collection/dp/B000H47H0A?th=1

We were  starting to work on moving stuff around in the freezers so we could start defrosting them as we are getting ready for garden to start up. I freeze peas, snow peas, corn and asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower and some carrots and some cole slaw. I freeze strawberries, black berries, blue berries, red raspberry (hope to get black raspberries this year), jams  and some fruit for mixed fruit pies.

Had several of plastic bins, paper sacks, cardboard boxes, cloth bags etc. bust on us so after a day of researching and another of pricing we ordered wire bins. We are starting with the barn freezer to see how we like them. Lack of organization in the chest freezers bugs the crap out of me. Hubby just digs through and doesn't put things back in the container it was in so everything ends up jumbled together and it's a hunt and find every time.

 Hubby decided he wanted a list on a clip board of what was in each freezer. I went with a clip board per freezer. AND then to mark the top of each freezer of each meat. Like freezer one be pork, freezer two be beef, freezer three be poultry. Leaving the barn freezer out of that line. He thought that was great. And then the rest of the freezer be fruit and veggies etc. Maybe cheese and nuts in the barn freezer... he decided he wanted to keep track of the pantry also... I told him that meant HE had to mark off stuff when he went down and got it NOT just tell me. He is still thinking of that and started looking at Excel sheet to do that. 

I will be transplanting some of the seedlings from the grow cart later today. 

How is your week going?

Prayers for peace.

Blessed be



Monday, March 21, 2022

Planning frugal

We turn the furnace down. I started using an electric water kettle to make tea (pour the hot water into another kettle) and when making rice, pasta or boiled eggs. I have found I save 2 hrs. of propane a week. by using the kettle. Electric is cheaper here. Not reliable enough as losing electric happens  with storms and accidents.

I used kitchen twine to tie up the grape vines and berry vines.

Hubby got more slab wood from E for free to make more potato crates.

I moved the utility bills to a cash back credit card that paid more than the other card.

Hubby wanted a different table for his HAM radio instead of the tv tray . Which I hate to move to dust mop the floor.

Sunday I took him out to the barn and we went "shopping" through all the furniture (Daddy's Mother's Pop's, late husband's, 6 kids LOL) and found a table he is trying before we refinish it and buy some wheels (to make it easier for me to dust mop the floor).

While shopping the barn:

I found a tub of place mats and cloth napkins that had been Mother's. They are now washed and hanging on the yard clothes line.

Hubby found a metal stand he used to use by the swing...which made him put out the swing also. Then he decided to bring out the outdoor furniture so he cleaned that. The stands needs refinished but he can do that later this summer. It's still damp and cool here.

We found a dresser buried under boxes that can be refinished for an upstairs bedroom. H, Amish neighbor on the other side can do that later this summer as he's already behind doing Son 2 cabinet LOL.

I found small pots that I can use to transplant seedlings into from the grow cart that can go under the bigger grow light  upstairs. 

He found a wicker hamper and decided he wanted me to repaint it so he could have it in the front room for throw blankets storage plus be able to use the top for a stand next to the love seat as the top is flat. 

We found 2 birdhouses, one was for a wren and that was hung up. The other needs a repair and then it will be put up.

I mentioned there was several cabinets I could use in the basement for dishes and appliances or even storage for boxed goods and the metal shelfing units it would replace could be used in the barn when we set up the summer kitchen (that I was calling canning area). AND there was also cabinets that we could set up a work shop for him and he wouldn't be constantly looking for stuff. OR having to buy it because he needs it NOW and can't find it. 

After walking through it he admitted that he defeats my decluttering when he takes what is supposed to go to the trash or to the thrift shop and it just gets shoved here and there in the barn since I always look to the left of the door in the first stall instead of INSIDE the barn, for what is supposed to go. Which means I as it's very seldom we, have to re-sort things .Since I am not willing to pay $100 a month for a dumpster. We will be working it through the normal trash that has a bag limit on it per week, recycling and thrift shops on the Tuesday we have errands and appts. I down loaded the Goodwill list so we don't take anything there they will just dump. I also brought up we could start donating some things to Habitat ReStore that we are not going to be using... like the kitchen sink that  a friend gave us and two bathroom sinks along with cabinets the kids passed to us.  I keep checking to see if there is a township clean up or a hazard waste clean day in our area. Last year both was cancelled.


Friday, March 18, 2022

Gathering information

We have seen here and there of comparisons of recession in 2008 when we lost 2 houses and about half our income and Daddy lost over 50% of his retirement (IRA) and had to start living on his social security alone. It's really not a surprise but a heads up. We are looking strong at the budget and seeing what we can cut to only live on social security which means not paying extra on the mortgage to start with.

We have friends that their work place payroll got hacked... they didn't get anything for almost a month and now are getting about 1 day a week for 5 days work. The company hopes to be back on schedule and everyone's pay be caught up by April. Another company that Daughter 4 was working for got hacked also. Her paycheck came in 2 wks later for less than what she made by hour even though she worked 80 hrs. They said that wasn't a full pay check (gee really?) but just a test to see if things were working. She had already put her notice in as she got back in to the company she had worked for a long time ago. They had called her and are paying more than where she was working AND it's closer to home and more stable hours.

Hubby's business has decreased by 50%. He is still making his bills as long as he doesn't take any wage, no profit, but worries about any big out lays with repairs. He does have a business credit card but prefers to pay it off in full and not waste his money on interest charges.

I had a credit card hacked... the credit card company caught it and denied the charges so at least I don't have that headache. Been there and done that. I had to go in and change the auto pays I had on that card. Might be a blessing as the card I use (that I got the in the mail the day of the hack) now gives more cash back on than the card I had on the bills.

We had an audit of the home to see if it would be worth getting solar power. Three different estimates, first on the barn roof and then just out in the yard, all 3 showed it would not be a break even point on the money side for 15 yrs. At our age, that's not worth it. It did show there were a few places that needed caulking and that replacing the windows and adding more insulation(wrap insulation if we were changing the old siding) would help. But for electric use we are on the low end for 2 people even with a grow light cart and heat mats. 

We are on the low end of using water also which the softener company told me we were saving about $16/ month between saving on salt and saving on changing the whole house water filter. Since our outside water is NOT ran through the softener that saves even more. 

We are on the low end of using propane for the size home (including pump house heater) we have. 

We only have one internet company in our area and they just lowered their rates by 5% without me calling and asking.




Monday, March 14, 2022

Monday what a weekend!

 I called for propane as we are down to 24 %. I should have checked last Thursday 

I called and scheduled our Moderna Boosters. Since Daughter 2 said that the Delta has joined omicron I would want to get the booster. She thought they were calling it deltacron 

Barn that burned was up by last Friday.




While dropping off horses on Saturday, one of the Amish told Hubby where the bald eagle's nest was.


you might have to zoom in to see it as it's in the white tree branches.

Hubby got "snippy" with a friend who texted him out of the blue that I shouldn't be wasting his hard earned money on the hobby of gardening. Hubby first asked why he thought it was a hobby... because it's not a real job from a real employer where taxes are taking out of the paycheck. And it wasn't a real farm because we have no live stock (makes you wonder what he thinks of the farmers growing grain for that bread he buys at the store).Hubby texted buddy's mom and told her he was sorry her son didn't think she worked taking care of the home and him and his brothers when they were growing up AND included the message from her son to Hubby. Made sure they knew he had not asked for the opinion or even had been "talking" to his buddy about anything.  His buddy not only has his mother on him, but his dad, wife, both of his girls and his son in laws on his butt.  Hubby said if he had asked for the opinion it would have been different . BUT since it was just because his buddy saw a post from Hubby's mom about the 150 seeds I planted Friday, his buddy thought he should text Hubby and tell him. 

I have a few family and friends that just got over covid. Two told me they were warned they could develop dementia/Alzheimer's 20 to 30 yrs sooner than normal and it will be worse with those that already have mental illness like bipolar etc. AND since the Buddy just got over Delta covid it and is in his 70's ...it made me wonder about his mental health.



 She is watching the bunny in E's field. Had to stand on the back of the love seat to get high enough



Monday, March 7, 2022

Frugal

 We turned the furnace down twice when we left home for appts. Sunday we turned it off as it was warm and forgot to turn it back on before we went to sleep. I let Charlotte out at 1 am and realized it and turned it back on.

I opened the windows and increased the humidity in the house from 31% to 62%.

I ordered humidifier filters for next winter. They were on sale for 40% off. I have found if I get supplies AFTER season it's cheaper than BEFORE season.

The buzzards are back(geese came in early also) means it is spring here. It's a bit early. But since they are back and it was warm I went to clean up the gardens. North flower garden, north gardens with  100 ft asparagus patch, 6 strawberry beds and the blackberries, red raspberries and the honey raspberries rows, south garden beds including trimming all the herbs back and the flower hill at the mail box are done. Usually that takes 1 week if not more and recover of 7-10 days. Hubby spent $$ to buy me a Stihl pruner and clipper. I would replace it tomorrow if it broke. IT was that great. I had some soreness but pretty much the next day was FINE. I still have the lilies and mint at mudroom door and the lilac and Halo bush at the kitchen porch. Hubby said it was a frugal buy since he isn't dealing with me being down with recovering after cleaning up the gardens and him having to do the work instead. 

I made taco seasoning , Cajun seasoning and seasoned salt. 

We ate leftovers I had frozen from the freezers. The leftovers are now making leftovers as I am now tossing what ever is left in eggs (frittata), pasta, rice or in a tortilla wrap. 

Hubby made more potato crates using free slab wood from E.

Hubby got clothes line marked down as it was 100 ft and most only want 50 ft so the store sold it to him for 40% off plus he had a coupon for 25% off one item. 

I ordered some spices I was low on thru Brandy (The Prudent Homemaker) at Amazon that was on sale (on my wish list) using my cash back to pay for it. I have found by putting what ever I want on the wish list and then only spending what my cash back is keeps me reined in.

Prayers for peace

Blessed Be


Amish barn fire

 No one was hurt, well, the wife sprang her ankle jumping over the fence to get her husband to tell him the barn was on fire.

N(E's brother and the man we bought this house from) lost the milk cow and 6 calves, the smoke got to them. 

They lost 2 dozen chickens.  But got out their 5 horses. Buggies are usually in that barn but the wife had decided to clean all 3 buggies so they were up at the house. Hubby hauled the 5 horses to F's barn until the barn can be rebuilt Saturday night.

The fire marshal thinks that a bird took something in the barn that must have caught a spark from the chimney on the sugar shack (maple syrup shack). They know it didn't "blow in" even with the high winds we had as N had closed up all the doors on the side of the barn that was towards the sugar shack because he didn't want the smoke to go in the barn. 

Over 10 ft tall of hay and straw, even wet it was smoldering.



Trying to see if there was anything left useable.

Light from fire truck so everyone could see. They still was there at midnight. Fire started at 3 pm. E said the hay/straw stack got spread out around 9 pm and they just kept spraying water on it as they knew higher winds were coming in the next morning around 3 am.

Fire department had to take water from the pond 2 doors down from us. We offered our pond if they needed more. 

E said they stood around (no work on Sundays) and decided what the battle plans were for rebuild . Eighty percent of the cement block foundation is useable. 

SO today they have a group of Amish going to a woods that an Englisher offered if they could use any of the trees for lumber. They have to use their horses to pull it out of the woods after they cut it down. E got a line of someone that could haul the logs to N's and another of someone to haul 2 saw mills (just the saw and stand) to N's also. Hubby is on stand by after he gets his hauling job done today in case they need something else hauled. N is hoping to get at least 1 stall put in his other barn so he can have 1 horse for his buggy for his family other wise they are "car less" buggy less , stuck at home and have to walk miles for anything. 

Prayers for peace.

Blessed Be


Wednesday, March 2, 2022

when family and friends are not getting their paychecks

 due to cyber hacking. I think all the kids, grandkids and a few friends either texted, called or FB us to give us a heads to watch our finances due to cyber attacks. I have some orders sitting at Amazon, I get notified when it runs through my credit card. My credit card is now giving 24 hr. notice of when something will actually be ran through so I have time to check to make sure it's for what I ordered. Hubby said his business card is doing the same. At first I was like crap... now it's like "this should stay" so I have time to STOP it if it is fraud. Fighting fraud on your credit card sucks... been there and done that. Son 2 is helping as he went through this about 7 yrs ago when  the govt shut down and he still had to go to work without a paycheck coming in.

I have one that the landlord is working with them but the utilities didn't care even though the company gave it's employees  a letter on company letter head with a number to call to confirm the person is employed with them. So we helped with utilities. One just needed gas money for the next few weeks (they get every two weeks) and their company is hoping it gets it fixed. Kid was like" if they had waited one day to hack it, I would have had my check".

We went to chiro, doctor told me I did a good job of getting my hip back in place... I was out less than normal. HA HA AND I could start back on the inversion table but only at a slight tilt which is what I was doing anyways not the full upside down.

We stopped at Menards, 11 % rebate and got more off the list that the other Menards didn't have the other day. Added drinking water for storage . 

Stopped at TSC to get clothes line stuff since Menards didn't have it. They were out also. BUT we found a solar unit for the electric fencing so we can put the electric fence around the corn (stops deer and coons from eating the corn) and not increase the electric bill. Got dog food that was on sale. 

We went to Aldi's... M needed cream cheese and bananas. They were out of cream cheese so Hubby just got the bananas. SO we stopped at another Aldi's on the way home, they were at a limit of 2 cream cheese but I got 2 also (she needed 24) and some stuff that was on our grocery list, I added more sugar for us as M had mentioned it was not coming in to the local store.

Then we went to Walmart that was 1 mile down the road from Aldi's. Got M's cream cheese and the rest of what was on our grocery  list. Loaded the truck AND

TRUCK WOULD NOT START .... Hubby then realized he had taken the jumper cables out of that truck for the work truck and when replaced work truck cables he laid the other set in the barn instead of putting them back in the other truck. SO he went in to buy jumper cables and to see if there was anyone there that could jump us.

Automotive dept employee came out and jumped the truck for us. He had a jumper box aka Jumper car box. I told Hubby we needed 2, one for each truck. Then we never would have to wait for someone to come by and jump us.   

We stopped at Auto zone on the way home, alternator is good, battery was in bad shape. We have a new battery. Auto zone guy told me to put on the calendar to have it checked in 2 yrs. BEFORE winter LOL.

The Amish have been growing spelt... they call it speltz. One of women figured out how to make decent bread with it and brought over a loaf with the warning it goes stale faster than even whole wheat but will make good toast even stale... I mentioned that it would then make good bread pudding... he is passing that thought to his wife as neither of them thought about it. He also brought some of the flour so I could "play" with it.  I think I will try a cake. If it turns out I will take some over to they with the recipe. 

Both humidifiers are out of water and need filters changed. Since it's getting warmer and more moisture is coming in. I decide to not change the filters. Might regret that choice in a couple weeks if we get hit with another round of freezing rain, sleet and snow.

Prayers for peace.

Blessed Be 



Monday, February 28, 2022

Day to Day thinking of more frugal ideas

 Just another day of freezing ice followed by sleet followed by snow (at least it was a dusting not a dump).It seems to happen every 7 to 10 days. The lane is so iced Hubby told me to walk in the grass if I was going to the mailbox. I just let him go out to it instead as I already threw my  back out. I didn't go in early to chiro. Our insurance pays for 26 visits a year and thing over that we have to pay the full amount. Our regular appt is every 2 wks.... which is this coming Tuesday.

Laundry is on the drying rack. Dishwasher is unloaded. Lunch is leftover smoked sausage and mac and cheese. Supper is dried beef gravy over leftover rolls. Most likely I will toss some peas in it also. Applesauce for the fruit.

E offered what he calls slab wood for free as he needs to get rid of it. It's what is left of the outside edges (bark side) when he is cutting for lumber. Hubby got some to make potato crates so he is in the barn tinkering on how he is going to make these boxes. 

This will sit on the ground (or weed barrier) with potting soil on the bottom and then the potato eyes and then more potting soil. As the plants grow we will add garden soil and Hubby will add more to the sides. We will also grow sweet potatoes in this style of crate also.

  https://oldworldgardenfarms.com/2022/02/17/easiest-way-to-grow-potatoes/

Not quite what he is making but where the idea came from.

I figured up what we spent on ice cream at the store through last year. I did not include Belly Acre as we get ice cream as a dessert when there. We spent almost $200 between gallons, ice cream sandwiches, klondikes, push ups etc. I got a ice cream/frozen yogurt/gelato/sorbet maker for $60. Hubby already cleared an area in the barn freezer for the bowl. He decided he wanted ice cream first, then gelato then frozen yogurt and then sorbet LOL.

We went to Menards to get garden stuff. Saved $114 using our rebates and their sales. 

I had a company send me 5 lbs. of potato tubers when I ordered 3 lbs. as they weren't sure what kind of condition they would be in with the weather that was going through. Box was so wet it had been put in a plastic bag by our carrier but the tubers seem fine. They were slightly damp. I have them spread out on a towel to dry.

We ate from the freezers and pantry. I only need dairy and season salt from the store.

We turned the furnace down when we left for an hour or more. Which has almost put us back on to our regular schedule of propane to keep us from using more than I budgeted for.

I made 5 gallons of  laundry soap. Unlike M who made 50 gallons of laundry soap on Saturday as someone got a cow butchered and didn't want the fat, so she made tallow laundry soap. 

I used my digital credits and Amazon gift card from Pinecone research to buy Jamie Oliver 15 minute meals cook book and his 5 ingredient meal cook book. Hubby has been watching his cook shows and thinks it's great as he uses a lot of fresh in season veggies. At one time half the kids were using the 5 ingredient meal cookbook but not one of them kept the book.

How did your week go?

Blessed Be

 



Friday, February 18, 2022

How do you spend your day?

 Son 2 asked me this last night and I wondered why ...then he mentioned he knows what I do when I start in the gardens... March through November  but not what I do November to March.

I told his this.

I get up between 3 and 8 am. I don't use an alarm unless we have to be some where before 11. That went bye bye when I retired since Hubby worked 3rd he never used an alarm. It is usually between 5 and 6 (sucks retired And I can't sleep in)

I drink 1 cup of coffee, open curtains and turn off night lights.

I drink 2nd cup of coffee and start the laundry and put away the laundry on the drying rack. Hubby usually unloads dishwasher at this time if not then I do.

Then I have my 3rd cup of coffee while waiting for the clothes washer to stop then put clothes on drying rack (clothes line in late spring/summer)

I get dressed, make the bed, straighten the house and walk the perimeter with the Charlotte.

If is is garden season (what my kids call it) I go to the garden. When it's not I get on the computer, email some friends, check Fb for other friends, read blogs, drink hot tea, read some, bake bread etc... if I need to plant seeds in grow cart I do that in the morning. 

I have a snack for bfast at 10. Take another perimeter with Charlotte. 

AT 11:30  I take meds, get more tea. If I didn't eat at 10 I do now. Do what ever needs done for the day. Grab a shower (which I would do at same time in garden season) and then take a nap at Charlotte's insists this is nap time on the bed and I have to be with her. Rascal was the same way. Thirty minutes to an hour later she is up and running and expects me to be also. SO we go for another perimeter.

By two , I am wrapping up any work. by 3:30 I start supper as we try to eat by 4:30 to 5. Hubby is a weather spotter and likes to watch the weather on 2 of our local channels. I clean up the table, set the dishwasher to run when I head for bed.

Five to 6:30 is watching the news. Then in warm weather we go outside, usually another perimeter (she hates winter and won't go as much). 

Around 8 I head to bedroom to get around for bed as Hubby sleeps in the recliner of the front room due to health issues. He usually goes to sleep around 8:30 but if I am there he will try to stay awake. He turns the tv timer on and turns off the light at 8:00 most nights. I read, usually with glass of water. I read my kindle first for 30 minutes so the light from it doesn't mess up my sleep, do my journal next and then read a book until 9:30 then it's lights out also.

I told Son 2 it doesn't matter if it's garden season or not. My routine is pretty much the same. I don't have a cleaning routine *yet, still, some more* so that's more of a I can't stand it anymore and slide it in between other things. I can tell you it takes a solid 60 hrs. to clean this house from top to bottom. The old homestead where I raised the kids took 30 hrs. I think part of the hours now are lack of organization and the other is I AM OLD. LOL

Blessed be 

2021 food costs

 The best thing we changed at the beginning of 2021 was using only one credit card for all food ... groceries, eating out, snack on the road from gas station. Hubby told me more than once he didn't buy a snack due to not wanting to use a credit card for something that small and was not carrying cash on him.

Total for the year  spent on food, groceries, stock up, eating out etc. $4979.73

OF that $1622.95 was eating out, that is about 32.6 % of that total.... I noticed about   1/4th of that amount was during last Feb the two weeks before I was going in for hip replacement and the two weeks after that. Chinese 4 times, 2 pizzas, garlic bread and salads, 1 KFC 12 piece bucket with sides, 1 Ralph's (local sports bar with great food that takes us 3 days to eat) and 2 Arby's.

We have a friend that goes to the store every week for groceries. They kept track of what they spent last year. They pretty much eat the same as us. Do some canning but that is no where near what we can.  She said they spent a month $503.76 on fresh veggies (they do can green beans and beets and freeze corn).They spent $272.94 on fresh fruit (they don't can or freeze any nor eat canned fruit). They average $260 on meat (neither eat much of it nor eat any beans). UNLESS there is a sale on brisket, ribs, spiral ham and turkeys.  But their average grocery bill is $1036.70 a  month. They eat out twice a week and that comes to $200 a month, $250 in a 5 week month. SO that is 1236.70 to $1286.70 a month. SO that is at least $14,804.40. The only reason they tracked it is they want to buy a different home closer to their grandkids and was moaning about how much her meds were and trying to come up with a down payment without pulling more. Their sons asked why they were pulling so much from the retirement and where was it going. 

I thought it was on the strange side when their younger son asked me how much we spent.  I did point out to him that they don't can as much as they could or freeze as much as they could. His dad eats salads every day but always choses the most expensive lettuce there is and refuses to shop at any other store than Kroger's even though Aldi's is right next door and sells the same lettuce for about 2/3rds the price.

It did make me feel better about what we spent for the year and what we are trying to move towards this coming year. I have bought 3 heads of lettuce since end of Nov. Instead of lettuce salad I had carrot salad, canned coleslaw (vinegar base) fresh coleslaw and 3 bean (4 bean) salad.

Blessed Be




In the garden


 Okay Not Really. BUT I do have 2 of the January King Cabbage sprouted. We were going to remove row cover from gardens today but the winds coming in at 20 MPH with gusts over 40 MPH has put that on hold.

I am updating what I keep track of on the "inventory" after noticing that Thomas Jefferson didn't note if his tomatoes were determinate or indeterminate. So I decided to add that information to my seed sheets aka inventory sheets aka plant sheets ... depending on the day of what I call them LOL.


These will go into sheet protectors and then 3 ring binders.... H is heirloom, MD is maturity date, and  GC is grow cart.


Friday, February 11, 2022

Thank you to the ladies

 that sent me a knife sharpener. I had saw Kevin Jacobs (agardenforthehouse.com)  using this. So  a big thank you.

We finished buying what we planned to give to Grandson D (and TB). Delivery is tomorrow as the weather today is to turn nasty. Hubby is doing a hauling job that is close by so not a big deal according to him. I am waiting for the last load of the dishes I bought to dry so I can box them up. Both have called me about odds and ends they thought of (already got) and then we got the call to bring staple gun and the fabric came off the back of the couch. It had been stapled. 

They warned us they had idiots (their term) running around them so to wear masks and bring gloves or hand sanitizer. Hey at least they are thinking about keeping us safe. We would have anyways as the great grandsons are in school and don't have vaccines yet. We just had 3 friends get covid after watching their great grandkids that were in school. 

Laundry is done and on the rack drying. I walked to road and got the mail.

Son 2 reenlisted to Army reserves.... he was going to be 23 days short of having 20 yrs for his pension... you have to have 20 years. He was talking of doing at least another year as his girlfriend (her term and he calls her his woman) has a teenager and he is looking at possible marriage and the teen going to college. He told Hubby he wants to be as good as stepdad as Hubby was. My kids don't acknowledge he is a step dad. They call him dad and introduce him as dad as their biological dad turned his back on them when they were about 10-12. I was totally shocked when he did it.

Daughter 4 had a hit and run driver total her car 2014 Jeep Latitude. She was able to find a newer 2016 Jeep Patriot sport for only $1000. more than she got from her insurance of the other car. She likes it better and thinks when I drive it I will be looking for one myself. Said it reminded her of my Ford Explorer. We will see. 

I had my check up with the GI/PA . I do NOT have antibodies to my Humira. The Humira is working. THAT IS VERY GOOD. He got the report from my ortho doc and said if he had knew I was walking around with a fractured socket for 7 months waiting for my hip to be replaced, he would have increased the Humira and put me on other meds to help keep things calmed down. NOW it's more of stay off the OTC pain meds as they are causing issues in the small intestine (Tylenol messes up my liver so can't take that either) BUT if in pain for longer than 8 hrs. TAKE SOMETHING LOL, do a food journal/ daily do list to see if it helps calm things down. Right now my CRP (C reactive Protein) is half of what it was a month ago. Since I am on NO meds to calm it down , he thought what I was eating (an not eating) was helping. I think  stressing over whether or not my Humira was working didn't help. He did mention he has several on Medicare that are paying huge amounts for their biologics. He hopes the new pill that is to replace biologics that has came out will be covered by Medicare within this year. 

I am reading Thomas Jefferson The Garden Book. He was better at keeping up with it when he retired.

Next will be The Richest Spot on Earth by Peter J Hatch that is about the same gardens as he worked with restoring them.

The Lost Super Foods by Art Rude, Lex Rooker, Claude Davis, and Fred Dwight is on the next list also. 

The Bread Bible By Rose Levy Berandaum 


I am definitely tired and sore today after a 4 hr. trip and being poked on by the PA. The nasty weather coming in does NOT help a thing at all.

Blessed Be everyone. Stay safe, stay well, be content.