Monday, October 26, 2015

Monday Message

One of the things I'm trying to learn and add to my skill set is my Toyota knitting machine.
“Church members are responsible for their own spiritual and temporal well-being.....To help care for themselves and their families, members should build a three-month supply of food that is part of their normal diet. Where local laws and circumstances permit, they should gradually build a longer-term supply of basic foods that will sustain life. They should also store drinking water in case the water supply becomes polluted or disrupted." (LDS Church Handbook 2, Section 6.1.1) - muffins, I am a muffin person. I love bakery style muffins. - here are a few inexpensive ideas for costumes. When my kids would be trying to decide a costume for Halloween we would go to goodwill and find what we could in the limited dollar amount. They had fun... got those creative juices flowing! - I thought this was a pretty good list of chores and ages. Are we teaching life skills? Are we learning skills?

How I teach myself…

I will use tatting as one of the things I wanted to learn.

What is needed to do this?

I went to freecycle to ask if anyone had tatting supplies as a list of things needed were not in my budget. I got one response and the supplies I now have are thanks to someone who is no longer tatting. If it is in your budget you can just get from the store.

Find someone who could show me, that someone was my wonderful mother-in-law. She got me familiar with how to start.

Research. I cannot tell you how important this is. I read everything I could get my hands on but still I needed more.

I looked at terminology on the internet.
I found free patterns on the internet too.
I found a free online class (this is still on going for me).
I found YouTube videos for just about every technique, some were not too helpful but many were extremely helpful.
Practice a lot of this.
I kept a learning journal that I can add too and can see my progress.

I am still learning. It is getting easier to understand. I can look at a picture and almost tell what is in the pattern.

I learn when I can and I try to find time when I can’t but I continue to learn.

I am just using my approach to learning by myself. I find that I can understand most of the abbreviations.

I have several things going that I am trying to learn…how to weave on a floor loom, I can tell you I am learning and can tell you it all has it’s own language!!!

I am trying to learn a Toyota knitting machine I got from a yard sale. I took a few classes but was starting to get fibromyalgia and she had me learn on a brother machine where she knew the difference but it only confused me. So I have a set of books that I got with the machine that are written for rural people who did not have access to teachers. So I am using those and more research is needed.

I am not telling you this because I think we all need to do the same but just to show you how I go about learning and to show that you can learn everyday and it does not have to be expensive this is excellent most helpful be thinking about dad's old shirts - free onsie pattern I suggest printing off the jumping car directions and put with your jumper cables and in your trunk. - while you are at it get those winter kits made and in your trunk. here are some skills and my favorite scripture. my favorite wheat is white wheat

Keep working on your goal to be actively building your food storage. Send me a list of skills you are working on or would like to build, I love hearing what you are doing.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Breadmachine French bread

I use the bread machine set to French bread setting.

In the pail put…

2 1/8 c. water
6 c. flour
6 tsp wheat gluten
2 tsp salt
2 tsp yeast

After it rises to the top of the pail I shape as you see here using two french bread pans that fills my oven rack.

You could use a cookie sheet and you can make the long baguettes instead, but I make each loaf into toe short ones. I let them rise to my liking then bake twenty minutes at 450. Then let them cool on a rack, then I freeze four loaves to a bag. Then when I want to make one with supper I turn on the oven to 400 degrees, set the loaves right on your oven rack. When it gets to temp time for eight minutes then you have a hot crusty loaf of bread yum!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Monday Message

I love looking through old cookbooks for the best recipes!

“Regardless of where we live or our financial situation, the path to preparation will open before us as we comply with the counsel of the prophets and go forward as means and circumstances permit.” (Gordon K. Bischoff, The Ensign, Sept. 1997, p. 67)

As I am resting as I over did yesterday I am reminded oh how painfully that we all have limitations. Learning to live within our limitations is a lot like living with a budget.

I need to do better at pacing myself and learn to better live within my limitations which is fibromyalgia. Not everyone has this limitation but there is some kind of limitation.

Learning this is sometimes painful, like for me today I forget that the pain the next day is going to be way worse. The problem is I keep forgetting.

I have the same mind set I had before I got this fifteen or so years ago when I could go go go.

Isn’t that what it is like on a budget? If your income has been cut it is hard to switch your thinking or perhaps forgetting all together. No, we must push on, pull on the resources we have. Now is the time to dust off those skills and put them to use and even enhance them and add to your skills. Look at this as a challenge.

For me I need to learn to break down tasks, find easier ways of doing things and when my body says stop then I need to stop and give myself permission to stop, which is the biggie for me. - this is a very good read on things she does with storage.

As I am working on this I have on music and the spoken word and on there he relayed the story of the grasshopper and the ant. The grasshopper was relaxing and playing his music and asked the ant to join him but the ant could not as he was putting in food for the winter. The grasshopper told the ant winter is so far off but the ant was diligent and had food for winter, the grass hopper had none…which camp do you fall into??

He said the only thing certain about the future is it is uncertain.

Wouldn’t you want to be prepared for as much as possible???

Try to be like the ant, continuing to gather. Do what you can, even little amounts build up big in time.

Whether you have little or no money or have much or in between, we should take joy in our lives. Don’t pine away because of what you don’t have and don’t feel bad for what you do have, make the most of everything. - this has some helpful info on it. - some helpful hints here for Christmas gifting this is good reading and scroll down to see their shelves for inspiration I know some of you dried apples and these recipes look yummie. it is always great to find out how to make our own for less

I make a substitute dryer sheet by taking a spray bottle, mine is small, put in three tbsp of a nice smelling hair conditioner. Fill rest with water and shake. Then when I have a load going in the dryer I take a wash cloth and spray it with the spray and toss it in with the load to dry. I love this method, just another option. - fun for the kiddos - something fun to try to enhance your bread making skills - get out your bread machine and play with these recipes - I love this gal - here are several ideas to get your juices flowing - sort through ideas on this one, pick what would work for you. I love the children’s artwork one.

Keep working on your storage. Keep building your skills. Learn ways to use your storage. I love looking through old cookbooks for the best recipes.

Keep those ideas coming! I love hearing about what you're doing. Remember, the goal is to be actively working on your storage by the end of the year then look and see how you did.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Monday Message

(LDS Church Handbook 2, Section 6.1.1)
“Church members are responsible for their own spiritual and temporal well-being.....To help care for themselves and their families, members should build a three-month supply of food that is part of their normal diet. Where local laws and circumstances permit, they should gradually build a longer-term supply of basic foods that will sustain life. They should also store drinking water in case the water supply becomes polluted or disrupted."

Well winter is around the corner. My garden is done so I have already unhooked the rain barrel. If you leave water in the barrel it will freeze and crack your barrel. I have not had an issue with water left in the bottom though but to have more could cause damage as it expands.

Christmas is now on our minds as we are looking at our budgets and thinking how this can possibly be done. 

Be creative, now is the time all those skills can come into play.

Soup is a winter staple and is always best leftover, crusty rolls are great with it.

Sewing... - this has many easy ideas for sewing gifts - very easy tutorial, if you want you could applique on it to enhance - I love this gal, she is very down to earth. These are very cute reversible headbands. this is very cute and will help you with applique infinity scarf, easy to make

Crochet… - very easy face scrubbies there are cute gift ideas

Knitting… lots of basic knitted gift ideas

I think that should get you started.

Now you might want to think of your traditions and the new ones you may want to start.

This is the time I like to have my own mixes on hand: - many useful mixes - this has many mixes on it - more mixes

Once you find the ones you like you can keep your jars filled. - more mixes - more mixes this is very old and neat

So keep working on your storage and living frugally!

Monday, October 5, 2015

Monday Message

"Every father and mother are the family’s storekeepers. They should store whatever their own family would like to have in the case of an emergency. . . . Some have said, “We have followed this counsel in the past and have never had need to use our year’s supply, so we have difficulty keeping this in mind as a major priority.” Perhaps following this counsel could be the reason why they have not needed to use their reserve. By continued rotation of the supply it can be kept usable with no waste" (James E. Faust, in Conference Report, Apr. 1986, 26; or Ensign, May 1986, 22).

Food storage means different things to different people. Some think they will just store long term things for the end of times and then it is never touched again. Some store everything and not touch it once it is on the shelf. Some buy twelve things of everything and call it done. I am sure there are many other ways out there.

Just a word about these ways... I mentioned the first way. While it is good to store, if you do not incorporate the stored food in your diets your body may not take kindly. Also, the taste buds might not like them. Food storage should not be punishing foods. The other if you are storing all your food for when hard tomes come you might find when the time comes it will be rancid and spoiled and if you get twelve of everything it would be okay if you only had that item once a month. You will be left wanting.

I will explain what I do, I am not saying right or wrong or that you have to do it exactly like me.

I do store wheat but not planning to use it for meat substitute or at end times, I use my wheat. Some cannot use wheat, they would be storing what they can use. By the time this message comes out conference will be over. We have cinnamon rolls and chili on conference weekends and yes, there is wheat in those cinnamon rolls and breads I make on a regular basis. You maybe don’t have to do bread as often as your budget may allow you to purchase bread but if you were cutting expenses making your own bread is an option. I do encourage you to make some so your family gets used to it.

Beans - I know that some make brownies using black beans and a brownie mix but while some like this, if I had the choice I would make brownies from the mix and make yummy black bean soup with the beans but when cutting expenses and being frugal I make the brownie mix from scratch.

I am not saying that the things are wrong I am just saying what I do. If you had given me detailed lists of what you do I would post that.

As we have had lots of hardships over our years, which I am not complaining as they have taught us much and have made us who we are… they have helped me do my storage differently.

My storage is like a huge pantry. There are the staples, which I use regularly, there are fruits, veggies, potatoes, meats etc. There is nothing stored for end times just future use. I rotate so that the food will not go bad, still some get hidden, this is how I know food can go bad but trying to be frugal and rotate and be organized, we all pretty much have space issues which proves we have to be more creative. I liken my storage, which is not perfect it will always be a work in progress, but I liken it to how past generations would put up enough food to get through the winter. So if I use that scenario it is prudent to have food on hand… different from them in that they did not have grocery stores as readily available as we do but for us our income was sometimes up and sometimes down, when up I could stock up, when down we still ate.  

How… ?

Well since we have a tight budget I do most everything from scratch. It takes more time and more work but this means money can be saved for paying bills. I am ever on the look out for ways to do more from scratch, so storing the basics is a need. I forgo things I might want to make sure I have the basics on hand. I grow a garden each year to put up food for the storage and I hate gardening but it helps us to use our finances for bills. We can't only do the things we like... I try to keep a list of what things I need to beef up on. Then when money permits I will get a few things on my list. This has helped me when I don’t feel up to getting groceries I don’t have to fret. I have fibromyalgia and some times I don’t feel up to things so I must plan extra and things take longer.

Is food storage my whole life? No, I have vast interests and love to learn.…but it is like a checkbook you cannot just throw your checkbook down and not touch it for years. No, you use it, you add to it and you have to stay on top of it or you will have troubles.

I try to learn all I can on being frugal, how to make do with what i have. I love sharing what I find with you :)

By sharing about me and how I manage on what we have I hope it helps you to prepare for the hard times in your lives - we all have them.

One bit of advice I would give, learn the skills now when you are not having hard times it is easier, still do it in hard times, but it's easier to learn the most useful first like how to make bread or find scratch recipes your family likes.

One other thing... take joy, there is joy in life. Don’t bemoan your hard times, take joy in life. Be happy and do the best you can.

Here are some frugal ideas for gift giving -  I would love to play with these, easy to make and fun for sure. - cute - frugal ideas

What skills do we need??

how to make bread, rolls, cinnamon rolls, etc.
how to make cakes from scratch
how to make frostings from scratch
how to make cookies from scratch
how to make pies from scratch
how to make soups from scratch
how to cook meals from scratch
how to make mixes from scratch
how to can veggies, meats, fruits, etc.
how to dehydrate and how to use it afterwards
how to mend, sew clothes and other needed items
how to knit, scarves, hats, mittens, socks, sweaters, dish cloths, etc.
how to quilt using used clothes to make blankets and pretty home improvements
how to upholster furniture and make slip covers
how to crochet (can be hats, scarves, mittens and sweaters etc.)
how to make do - this is huge!
how to be happy with what we have - this is huge too!!
how to give your family hair cuts, learn how so they don’t want to go to school with a bag on their head
how to yard sale
how to shop frugally at thrift stores
how to plant a garden, how to improve the garden
how to make a rug, there are many ways
learn fun things like I am teaching myself to tat, the pioneers called it poor mans lace, even in sod huts they tried to beautify their homes.
how to embroider
you don’t HAVE to take classes, there are many free lessons online or ask someone who already knows how.
push yourselves to learn new things

These are not just waste of time but are enriching.
Teach the next generation.
Learn to live on what you make, this is a great skill.

I am sure you can think of more to add to the list. I am sure you can build your storage to suit your family.

I am so glad to hear how many of you are working on your goal of getting in your storage.

If you need incentive as a family start reading The Long Winter by Laura Ingalls… incentive for stocking up in that book as well as inspiration on how to keep a journal. Some day you may write your story. Also they used their skills and such to make gifts for Christmas. I think homemade Christmas’ are the best for sure.

Please keep letting me know what you are working on and how you are building your skills.
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