Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Blogger changes and What I'm reading Wednesday...

Before I start the book talk, I just want to ask if anyone else has noticed that Blogger is making changes again.  One thing I've noticed is that I no longer get comment notifications to my email (though the settings still show that I have that option checked).  I always like to reply to comments in the comment section and also send my reply via email to each commenter.  Apologies to all if it seems like I have been ignoring comments lately.  I haven't had as much time on the computer lately, and hadn't noticed this change before, so have missed quite a few comments, I'm sure.

Shelter in Place by Nora Roberts

I'm reading a new one by Nora Roberts.  I jumped on the library reserve list very quickly and happily found myself very close to the beginning of the line.  I'm enjoying the book.  It begins with a mall shooting by three high school gunmen.  Then it follows the lives of those who were affected by the horrifying event.  

Monday, June 18, 2018

Making it Monday...

A lot of card making going on around here lately, and tomorrow I'm going to have some serious clean up and supply put away to do!

The camp the girls attend gives the opportunity to the kids to send and receive mail.  My kind of camp!  Kasey was swamped lately, and when I mentioned letters from camp recently, she said she wasn't sure she would have time to get supplies together for the girls this year, so I told her I would love to do it.

I made two sets of eight cards.  The first contained four each of the two ice-cream designed cards above.  I used images found on the web and printed on card stock, then layered on colored card stock and used matching washi tape I had on hand, and I stamped 'sweet treats' under each focal image.  I put labels with their return address on the envelopes, and I made labels with likely recipients' names and addresses.  I figured the quicker the job was for them to do, the more letters might go out.  :)  I also included a gel pen of a matching color and postage stamps.  I actually had ice cream-themed postage stamps that went with this set.

The second set (I'm not sure which girl chose which set) contained one each of eight owl designs, along with labels, postage stamps, and a colored pen.  I used to LOVE new stationery when I was a kid.  I hope they like these...and USE them!  :)

You've seen this photo below in the last Frugal Friday File.  I thought I'd show you the progression to its completion.
This was the very start, and it went really quickly.  Only an hour or so and the stitching was done.

I graphed my own pattern for this.  I realize now that I got a lot of his coloring backwards, but still, everybody knows who it is...Rudy, of course!  LOL  I'm having fun playing with these tags.

Here's the finished card.  I made it to send to Chloe at camp.  She and Rudy are a lot alike...full of energy...attention seekers.  I wouldn't say she doesn't like him, but I would say that she gets along better with more laid-back dogs.  So I kind of torment her by sending her cards from him.  :)  

I'll make another tag card tonight to send to Caitlyn.

Last week, I mailed out four letters to grown ups on my list.

I haven't counted lately how many letters have gone out this year, but I think I'm doing really well on this year's 52 letters in 52 weeks challenge.

edited to add:  Tuesday morning I made another card each to mail to Caitlyn and Chloe.
This is the cross-stitch tag card I made for Caitlyn.  I couldn't find all of my floss, and so found myself with limited options.  There was almost no contrast between the two colors of pink I used for the owl.  I stitched the wings with a pink even paler than the body, and I was so unhappy with it that I figured I couldn't make it any worse, so I might as well try something unorthodox.  I used a raspberry-colored sharpie to carefully 'dye' the floss of the wings' Xs.  LOL  It worked beautifully, and really helped the look of the finished tag.  Now, please understand I would NEVER do this on a larger piece of cross-stitch, but the tag was so small, it wasn't a big investment to risk.

This was a quick one for Chloe with just paper and washi tape...yes, the 'Hello Gorgeous' and flowers is a strip of washi that fit perfectly across the card front.  Lucked out there, as I was rushing to get it in the mail.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 24...

1.  Took advantage of daughter and son-in-law's pool, and spent the afternoon playing in it with the kids.  Fun, exercise, and only minimal guilt that they have all that upkeep and expense, and I get to use it for free.  LOL

2.  Worked two days.

3.  I packed a little box of cross-stitch supplies for my purse.  Unfortunately I picked up sharp needles instead of the more rounded-tipped cross-stitch needles.  Luckily there was an emery board handy.  After filing down the sharp needle tip a little, it dulled the point enough to make it much easier to use on the paper tag I was working on, and it didn't split the thread as much.  I know I have cross-stitch needles in the chaos craft room somewhere, so finding a handy temporary fix instead of buying more is frugally making do.

4.  I've been making a real effort to drink water.  I've only had two Cokes this month.  

5.  I had some yellow squash in the fridge that needed to be used.  Carey picked it out at the store for me, and they were all covered in blemishes that were somewhat woody feeling, and I was afraid it might have an unappetizing texture after cooking.  Honestly, I was tempted to sneakily chuck them in the trash. Instead I used a potato peeler to remove all of the skin and then put them in a favorite cheesy-squash casserole.

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  Quiche and broccoli
Sunday:  Sunday family supper at Kasey's
Monday:  *Schlotzky sandwiches
Tuesday:  pork chops, baked sweet potatoes, squash casserole
Wednesday:  sausage, peppers, and rice skillet with green beans
Thursday:  leftovers
Friday:  *pizza

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)

Friday, June 8, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 23...

1.  Having breakfast for dinner last night saved me making a trip to the grocery store, and the eggs were free from a generous local chicken keeper.

2.  Received an email notification from the library that Season 3 of Outlander, which I've been on the reserve list for, is ready for me to pick up.  Weekend binge watching ahead without a Showtime subscription fee.

3.  Our phone/cable/internet co-op is going to be deducting 20% from our bills going forward.  It will be considered a dividend payment, and will be reported to the IRS at the end of the year as such.  Seems kind of an odd way of giving a discount (must have tax benefits for the co-op), but even after taxes will still keep money in our pocket.

4.  Filled up while I was in town taking advantage of 10¢ per gallon discount.

5.  I faithfully use a windshield sun shade when parked outside.  My car has a black interior, so the shade definitely helps the interior temperature and makes it easier for the a/c to cool down after being parked.  It also helps prevent damage to the dash and upholstery from sun damage over time.

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  *sushi
Sunday:  Sunday family dinner at Kasey's
Monday:  Greek Tortellini Salad
Tuesday:  leftovers
Wednesday:  *Schlotzky sandwiches
Thursday:  breakfast for dinner
Friday:  *Tex-Mex

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Seven random thoughts on the 7th...

1.  My blog has gotten repetitive and boring with only What I'm Reading Wednesday and Frugal Friday File posts lately.  Fingers crossed I will have some time soon to be able to get out and about and have time to write about it!

2.  We have hit 100° F (38ish C) and continue to hover around there for the past week or more.  Ugh!  So hot.

3.  The heat makes me do impulsive things to get more cut my hair off:
4.  Our public library is undergoing a big building project.  I don't know how it could get any better, but I'm looking forward to seeing the planned improvements.  The big news this week is that they are also changing its name.  Now that's going to take some getting used to.

5.  On my way to the chiropractor today, I got stuck in stopped traffic for a good thirty minutes as a work crew was putting in a stop light on a two-lane section of the highway.  I came home a different way, but still had construction delays.  It seems every route to or from our home is undergoing construction at the same time!  Our county is undergoing extreme growth (2nd fastest-growing county in the U.S.)

6.  Speaking of growth, the empty lot next door to us has surveyor's stakes up.  We may have construction right on our doorstep soon.  :(

7.  Today is my Catie-bug's birthday!  Thirteenth...a teenager.  She is away for the week, so I had to text my birthday wishes...but that's a fitting method for a teenager, no?

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

What I'm reading Wednesday...

The Trees by Conrad Richter

I finished this one.  It is an old book...originally published in 1940...and the first of a trilogy.  It's about the settling of Ohio and cutting down the old-growth forest.  I have a piece of my family history somewhere, that says my great-grandmother remembers her childhood in Ohio before the old-growth trees were all cut down, so this was of personal interest to me.  I also found the 1978 television miniseries on DVD at our library, and watched it this week.  I will probably read the other two books in the trilogy.

The Last Kingdom by Bernard Cornwell

I just started reading this one.  It has been on my Kindle for awhile.  I want to read it before I watch the series.

Friday, June 1, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 22...

1.  An ebook sounded interesting on Amazon, and was on special for $3.99.  I checked the library website before shelling out any money...score!  I had to get on the reserve list, but there are five copies, and I'm 7th on the list, so it shouldn't be too long.  I can wait.  

I also checked the library for another book that I wanted to read.  It's an old book, so hard to find, and the library didn't have it.  I couldn't find it anywhere at a reasonable price, so I bought the Kindle version.  But when I was checking the library for the book, I discovered that they DID have the 1978 miniseries based on the books on DVD.  Fun weekend viewing.  :)

2.  Picked up two new days of work this week.  I cannot believe how often my phone has been ringing.  On Tuesday I was in the middle of an appointment with my primary care physician.  She asked me if I was still working, and I replied I had not worked this much since I left full time, and I am pooped!  At which point my phone (which I had silenced) vibrated loudly in my purse.  She jokingly asked, 'Is it work?', so I looked down at the phone, and indeed it was.  Oi vey!  

3.  Carey also worked an extra three days filling in for a co-worker.  He's pooped too!

4.  I made a birthday card for my friend, Pam's, birthday today.  I'm working in the town where she lives today, so we are having dinner after I get off.

5.  I packed a lunch to take to work today.

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  *baked potato
Sunday:  Sunday family dinner at Kasey's
Monday:  Chicken & Broccoli Pasta
Tuesday:  *barbecue
Wednesday:  roast, potatoes, carrots
Thursday:  *burger
Friday:  *dinner out for a friend's birthday

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

What I'm reading Wednesday...

This is Your Life, Harriet Chance!  by Jonathan Evison

Seventy-eight-year-old Harriet is examining her life.  The chapters are told from the point of view from her at different ages.  Enjoying it.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 21...

I don't feel very successful this week at being frugal.  I bought a chair.  I made some donations. (It may shake up my budget, but sometimes it is just the right thing to do.)  I ordered some fabric.

1.  I worked a full five days this week.

2.  I finally finished up the tube of toothpaste after using it a month after anyone else in my family would have thrown it away.  Each time I think it has to be almost all gone, I lay it flat on the counter, and lay my toothbrush handle flat across the tube, starting at the seam end, and squeegee the toothpaste inside up toward the cap end.  That always works to get another few day's worth.  :)  I do not subscribe to cutting the tube open and using your brush head to get the very, very last bits, because I don't like the idea of...well, I just don't like the idea.  Usually I'm half asleep at night or too rushed in the morning anyway.  But next time I will cut it open to see if there is a dab left.  Maybe I'll take a photo to share.  Exciting stuff, that!

3.  I ate lunch at Sonic quite often this week, not frugal, but it is directly across the highway from the branch I was working in (which doesn't have a refrigerator or microwave to store or heat lunches from home).  It amazes and aggravates me how many people leave their cars running the entire time they are eating their lunch there.  Yes, it is getting quite warm here, but it is not unbearable in the shade of their awning-covered parking with the car off and the windows all open...unless there is someone sitting next to you in a huge pickup leaving it running and blowing hot engine air in your windows.  When that happens, I move to the end spot on the row.  It's cooler and quieter, you don't waste gasoline when the car is turned off, and secluding myself from people as much as possible and reading my book for an hour helps me relax and face the afternoon.  Oh, and most of the receipts I got for my orders had free-drink-for-taking-a-survey offers.  I made sure to complete all the surveys to get the validation codes, and now I have free drinks coming with no other purchase required and no expiration dates.

4.  I wore work clothes and shoes all week that, with the exception of one blouse, have lived in my closet for a looooong time.  I've mentioned before that I don't keep a big work wardrobe since I usually only work a day or two or three at a time.  I have been working a lot this year though, and it's been challenging when working a week (or five!) at a stretch.  I take things off at the end of the workday and hang them up if they are wearable a second time.  I pre-treat stains before I put them in the hamper.  And after washing I hang them to dry if possible, or remove them from the dryer and hang them before they get over dried.  Now there are a couple of items in my work side of the closet that I am so tired of that I'm tempted to 'accidentally' spill a big old glass of red Kool-Aid on them, but so far I have restrained myself (mostly because I never buy or drink the stuff).

5.  We are keeping the a/c thermostat a little warmer than we used to.  We use ceiling fans, and turn them off when we leave the room and don't expect to return soon.  

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  *pizza
Sunday:  Sunday family supper at Kasey's
Monday:  leftover pizza
Tuesday:  *I don't remember which probably means takeout
Wednesday:  salmon, seasoned rice, green beans
Thursday:  *Chinese
Friday:  chicken curry pasta

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

What I'm reading Wednesday...

Room for Hope by Kim Vogel Sawyer

My mother-in-law was reading this one when we visited last week.  It sounded like I might like it, so I ordered a used copy when I got home.  

In the 1930s a woman works hard to handle the family mercantile business and raise twins while her equally hard working and respected husband spends every other month traveling to enlarge their sales area.  Still, she was happy in her marriage and with her life until one day a stranger appears at her door with three small children whose parents died tragically.  On the father's deathbed he asks the doctor to deliver the children to their aunt...only she's not their aunt...and she learns that the children's parents were her husband and his other wife.  Having been raised in an orphanage, she can't bring herself to turn her back on the children no matter that their presence makes life and work harder than it has ever been, and is a constant reminder of her husband's deception.

I was really glad I had it in my purse last night when I attended an auction.  After previewing the sale contents online and in person, I had only one target:
Not my normal style choice, but for some reason it spoke to me...probably because I think it will look fabulous during the holidays with my leg lamp.  And just look at that fluffy, old-fashioned seat cushion.

It took forever for them to bring it up for bid, but that just meant I got lots of reading time, and by the time it came up most of the bidders had gone home so I could afford it.  :)  Of course, that means I spent all day at work today wishing for a nap!

Friday, May 18, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 20...

1.  Booked 3 new days of work in June, and 2 weeks in July.

2.  I worked in a neighboring town on Monday, but managed to prepare slow cooker recipe Sunday night, store covered in fridge overnight, and just slip pot into the cooking base Monday morning and turn it on.  I haven't been cooking much lately for a variety of reasons, but this week I managed to get about a week's worth of freezer meals stored to feed Carey while he's at work with at least a little bit of variety.

3.  We had a great day trip to see my mother-in-law.  Carey took her chocolates for Mother's Day.  She isn't really supposed to have chocolate, so we kept them few in number and I packaged them prettily with supplies from my stash.  My gift was a nice long foot rub.  

4.  I have been so unhappy with my HE washing machine.  How many times have I said that here?  Last weekend I was at the point of telling Carey that we needed to get rid of it and shop to see if we could find a more retro one that I could fill to a water level I wanted and actually get my towels to stop being smelly and seeming less than clean.  I decided that I should probably read through the manual before doing anything rash.  And behold, I actually figured out how to get a higher water level!  I also ran a cleaning cycle with a cleaner, which removed the dank smell from the wash tub, and I scrubbed the rim of the tub to remove dust and grime build up.  I think I may be happy enough to keep it after all.  A little elbow grease and effort, and reading the instructions (!), helps make 'making do' more satisfying.

5.  Reading library books, brewing iced tea, paying bills on time, setting money aside monthly for annual insurance premiums...

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  *Schlotzky sandwiches
Sunday:  Sunday supper at Kasey's
Monday:  Dublin Coddle
Tuesday:  late lunch out with m-i-l, skipped supper
Wednesday:  meatloaf, baked potato, corn
Thursday:  leftovers
Friday:  *salad

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

What I'm reading Wednesday...

I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives
by Caitlyn Alifirenka and Martin Ganda with Liz Welch

Best book of the year so far!  I began it in the car yesterday (road trip to see mother-in-law) and finished it this morning...could not put it down!

What begins as a school pen-pal writing assignment changes the lives of a 12 year old from Pennsylvania and a 14 year old from Zimbabwe.  But like a pebble dropped in the water, you can feel the ripples still spreading.  

I challenge you to read this book!  I defy you to not be moved by it.  And I encourage you to act in response to it, even in a small way.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Saturday snail mail...

So nice to have some time to make a few cards and write a few letters!

This was the first (for my sister's birthday):
When I looked at the finished card, I realized it reminded me so much of a former co-worker (she loves this color combination and dragonflies), that I had to make one for her as well.  I ended up making three total that differed slightly and had different sentiments.  All three were sent off with letters.

This was my mother-in-law's Mother's Day card.  I just realized that I used the same stamp set for her birthday card at the end of March.  I think (hope) the different layout and coloring will keep her from noticing.  I'm trying to write to her at least twice a month this year, so I think (hope) having a bit of similarity in cards is forgivable.  

Friday, May 11, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 19...

1.  I haven't used gasoline to shop.  This is a really lame stab at frugality, because I can't say I haven't shopped, I just stayed home and did it online.  Something rather large is due to arrive this afternoon, and Carey may kill if you don't hear from me, it's been real.  

2.  I purchased a sewing machine from Amazon.  It's not an extravagant one...well, not greatly extravagant.  Someone in my quilt group got one within the past year.  She has fabulous machines, and she likes this one for traveling.  It also has good reviews.    I finally decided that I've been working a lot and wanted to spend some of my hard-won pay on this since parts are no longer made for my current machine (which is 40+ years old) making it irreparable if anything goes out on it.  I've been watching the price and thinking about it for awhile.  Recently it was $399...then $425...then it was down to $375, and I bit.  So not really an impulse buy, as I've done some homework and had the money saved up for it.

3.  I made four cards so far this week from items in my stash (and wrote letters and mailed).  At the price of store-bought cards these days, I'm counting this as frugal.  It also feeds my creative soul, and makes the recipients happy.  One of them phoned me immediately upon receiving hers, and we had a nice catch-up visit.

4.  We finally had to turn on the air conditioning.  Every year I say we aren't going to turn it on until May, and every year it goes on in early April.  So making it to May this year feels like a real win.  Of course, I can't pretend that it was a sacrifice, it's just that the weather stayed cooler and dryer longer this year.

5.  Reading library ebook, filled out survey for a free soft drink at my favorite place, still haven't gone for a haircut (though I can't say I couldn't use one, and I'm thinking of going really short again which will mean I have to go more often in the future), using up overripe bananas in smoothies, and doing cleaning chores myself but wishing I had a hired helper.

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  skipped supper
Sunday:  Sunday family supper at Kasey's
Monday:  *barbecue
Tuesday:  grazed
Wednesday:  scrambled eggs
Thursday:  *Chinese
Friday:  *late lunch out, no supper

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

What I'm reading Wednesday...

The Readers f Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald

This one was recommended as "a delightful book" by Juhli over at A Boomer Girl's Guide.  I can do with a delightful book after the last couple I've struggled through (actually 1 1/2 as I gave up half way through of one).  I haven't made much time to read lately, so I've just barely made a start on it.  

Friday, May 4, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 18...


1.  Kasey is attending a wedding this weekend, and needed her gift wrapped.  I'm her go-to wedding-and-baby gift wrapper. :)  I had plenty of supplies in my stash to make a pretty presentation.

2.  Planned-overs:  slow cooker pork roast dinner on Monday made pork carnitas tacos on Thursday.  

3.  Picked up another two days of work in June.  I really had to think about it.  It means missing another day of quilting at the library, but it will pay for the quilt retreat in the fall.  My job is kind of feast or famine.  Right now is a busy time, but it won't always be, so better take advantage of it while it's here.

4.  I brewed some peppermint tea...much cheaper and healthier than soda...and it's starting to get hot enough to really crave cooling beverages.

5.  Taking care of some financial organization necessitated a trip into the credit union today.  I expected it to be a quick ho-hum chore, but was surprised to see someone I really like working the counter as a new employee.  Still quick, but made a ho-hum chore fun to get a minute to catch up, not to mention that staying on top of financial organization is a very frugal activity.

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  *Chinese
Sunday:  Sunday family supper at Kasey's
Monday:  pork roast, mashed potatoes & gravy, broccoli
Tuesday:  Mexican Cornbread, beans, sliced tomatoes
Wednesday:  *Tex-Mex
Thursday:  tacos: pork carnitas; grilled onion, green & yellow peppers; avocado
Friday:  leftovers

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

This and that...

I'm enjoying being home this week, but I've been finding it hard to get back into blogging.   

I've managed to kick the cough for the most part, but giving myself a pass on unnecessary activity.  

I've been doing some cooking again, which feels good.

Carey thinks Rudy has been growing recently, and that his bed looks too small all of a sudden.  I think it's fine.

Oh...well...then there's times like this.  LOL

I went over to the kids' house this afternoon.  Today's high was 87°, and Chloe was wearing this heavy, dark sweater.  When I asked her why she was wearing that on such a warm day, she explained that she had lost her shirt in gym today and had to find something to wear in the lost and found.  😅  Holy, moly, that girl can lose anything!  Chloe, how do you lose your shirt?  Well, I guess someone picked it up by mistake.  Hmmm, o-kay?

I went back to reading this book again.  I know I said it was tediously overfilled with details, and I stand by that, but I started reading a different book and disliked it even more, so returned to this one.  I'm skimming large portions and reading the parts that interest me, but not at any great pace.

I go back to work on Friday for 3/4 of a day.  Monday and Tuesday will be full workdays at a local branch, which is nice.  Monday is also quilting-at-the-library day which I will sadly have to miss.  :(

And that's about it.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 17...

1.  I accepted another six days of work for next month at two different branches (different from each other, and different from the one I am in presently, and six new days as of this week not counting any mentioned previously).  I think I should stop answering my phone.  

2.  I remembered to pay all the bills on time foregoing any late fees.

3.  I'm using up gasoline commuting, but too tired to spend gasoline going anywhere else.  I've succumbed to a cough/sore throat/laryngitis.  And I thought I was fatigued before.

4.  I finally gave up on the library ebook I was reading forever.  I made it 50% of the way through.  The topic could have been so interesting written by someone who knew how to edit.  So repetitive.  So MUCH superfluous detail.  SO glad I checked it out from the library instead of buying it!

5.  Today Rudy is 2 years old!  I didn't buy him any new toys, but I have spent time playing with him and his old ones.  I didn't make him a cake, but I will probably let him lick my ice cream bowl.

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  *Tex-Mex
Sunday:  Sunday supper at Kasey's
Monday:  Dublin Coddle
Tuesday:  leftovers
Wednesday:  *burger
Thursday:  *Schlotzky sandwiches
Friday:  slow cooker roast, potatoes, onions, carrots

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)

Friday, April 20, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 16...

1.  I worked all week.  The patient (she has gotten an excellent report, and is feeling good) has a return-to-work date of April 30...week after next.  That will make five weeks in a row for me total.  Definitely not my norm.  I am exhausted!  But savings account, get ready!

2.  I'm booked for two more weeks during her next surgery in July, as well as one day a week between now and then.  And two days in May at another branch which I think I mentioned last week.

3.  I've barely had time to read, and am still on my library ebook.  It was due a few days ago, but since it's on my Kindle, I just keep the wifi turned off.  The library's book gets returned from my Amazon account, so no fines, but I'm still able to read on my Kindle as long as I don't forget and turn on wifi...if I do that it instantly gets sucked into the ether.  

4.  Amazingly we are still not using the air conditioner.  I know I've been mentioning that every week, but it is really rare to go this far into the year without it.

5.  I have zipped through my email inbox at night...delete, delete, delete...with nary a temptation to buy a book or fabric or clothes.  Saving time and very probably money.

Bonus:  I received the $30 rebate check from the purchase of Rudy's flea/tick meds.  

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  breakfast for dinner...waffles, bacon, & eggs
Sunday:  Sunday family supper at Kasey's
Monday:  Carey cooked spaghetti; I had *salad out with a friend
Tuesday:  *anniversary dinner out
Wednesday:  *Schlotzky sandwiches
Thursday:  snacked
Friday:  *Chloe's pick

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Along the path...

I was looking through some old posts on my blog today...trying to pin down which years I've completed reading through the Bible...and happened upon this post from April 2009.  It was very interesting to see which topics I have completed, which ones no longer interest me, and to find that most I still long to do!

It was entitled, "Along the path to personal growth and happiness." 

I would like to...
1...have my entire house clean and decluttered all at the same time
2...see the King Tut exhibit physically fit
4...visit Maine
6...and Washington DC
7...walk for 45 minutes every day
8...have another Jack Russell
9...take a cruise to Alaska
10...start a new Bible study
11...finish a quilt for each of my children and grandchildren (four down so far)
12...speak Spanish fluently
13...spend quality time in a swimming pool more
15...paint rooms
16...and canvases
17...have a vegetable garden
18...plant a fig tree
19...and a pecan tree
20...volunteer for hospice
21...learn to make beautiful polymer clay beads
22...go bowling
23...visit Oregon
24...make myself an apron
25...and dresses for the girlies
26...get all of our photos in albums
27...give up TV for a month to put flowers on my parents' graves
29...and to see Kevin and Carla
30...have a girls' weekend with Rita May
31...and with Nancy able to summer in a cooler climate
33...invent something useful with the dogs more
36...send one card/note to someone each week
37...install sliding units in several of my cabinets
38...make a vintage recipe book
39...have a flower garden
40...hang clothes to dry outside
41...visit Ireland again
42...and Debbie in Seattle
43...start an Etsy store someday
44...if I could think of something to sell
45...get my passport stamped a few more times
46...visit my reflexologist once a month
47...follow through with more of my creative impulses classical guitar
49...go down three dress sizes
50...sell the stamps I no longer use on e-bay
51...take a class in almost anything

The ones I have completed have been struck through. The ones which are no longer relevant have been grayed out.  I think I may make this its own page under the blog title to keep these within easy access to remind myself of more often.

Friday, April 13, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 15...

1.  Packed a lunch on M/T/W.  Thursday I spent $3 on 2 breakfast tacos and put them in the work fridge.  Heated one up for lunch; the other I will have for lunch today...probably.

2.  Using up overripe bananas and beyond-their-best oranges, frozen pineapple, grapes, coconut milk, and protein powder to make smoothies and drink them in the car for breakfast.

3.  Reading a library book.

4.  I booked 2 days of work in May.  And may be working some half days if the surgery patient needs a slower start back to work.

5.  Still using no heat or A/C.  I cooked a meal on Monday and had enough leftovers to make a lunch for me to take work as well as two meals for freezer for Carey to take to work, and sandwiches.  No recreational spending this week (if you don't count take-out meals).

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  *pizza
Sunday:  Sunday family supper at Kasey's
Monday:  meatloaf, twice-baked potatoes, corn
Tuesday:  leftovers
Wednesday:  *Schlotzky sandwiches
Thursday:  *Whataburger
Friday:  roast, potatoes, carrots

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

What I'm reading Wednesday...

The Woman Who Smashed Codes:
A True Story of Love, Spies, and the Unlikely Heroine who Outwitted America's Enemies
by Jason Fagone

I've been on the library reserve list for this ebook for months.  True story of Elizebeth Smith who began her career trying to solve ciphers in the works of William Shakespeare, then, together with her husband William Friedman, developed the modern science of cryptology.

I haven't had much time to lunch and for a few minutes at bedtime before I fall asleep.  Only about 10% read so far.

Friday, April 6, 2018

Frugal Friday File 2018, week 14...

1.  I've been making salads (among other things) to take for my work lunch.  I was trying to figure out what to pack the dressing in that wouldn't leak.  While thinking on it, I got the Dijon mustard out of the fridge to make honey mustard dressing, and there was just enough mustard to make a few days' worth of dressing.  So as not to leave any of the mustard in the bottle, I just added the honey, vinegar, and oil to the bottle and shook it up.  About then it dawned on me that the small mustard squeeze bottle was perfect to pack in my lunch box.

How exactly is this frugal?  Well,  I make homemade salad dressings instead of buying bottled that inevitably gets half used, then stays in the fridge well past its shelf life and gets thrown away with lots of waste.  I used up every last drop of the mustard.  The honey that I used was totally crystallized, so I put it in the microwave for a few seconds at a time until it was liquid enough to use in the dressing.  I saved the energy, soap, and water of washing any other receptacle that I could have carried the dressing in (okay, that may be a real stretch).  And I havn't spent money on eating out (at least for lunch). 

2.  I'm occupied for eleven hours a day (at the job or driving to or from it), and the rest of the time I am too exhausted to do anything that costs money.  I sit at a desk all day, but my poor brain is in an all day boot camp remembering things I've forgotten, learning system updates that have been implemented since I last used it, trying to figure out the needs of an entire branch full of customers whom I know nothing about.  Ever notice how when your brain is tired your whole body is tired?

3.  I'm driving a car that uses much less gasoline than its predecessor, and the branch I'm working at is about a block from a gas station that has the most inexpensive gas I've seen recently.  I also requested another gasoline credit card for myself on our account for this brand; by using that, it discounts each gallon purchased by a few more cents.  And I pay off the purchases each month, so that no interest is charged on the account.

4.  It's that golden (and extremely brief) time of year when we are using no heat and no A/C.  This month's electric bill is the lowest since this time last year.

5.  I'm expecting a pretty decent paycheck.  

Keep Tryings:
I acknowledge that I am working an hour or so a day just to pay for our suppers that haven't been cooked at home.  That really stinks.

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  leftovers
Sunday:  Sunday family supper at Kasey's
Monday:  *Tex-Mex
Tuesday:  *Chinese
Wednesday: *Schlotzky  
Thursday:  *dinner out with a friend
Friday:  *dinner out with Chloe

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)
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