Monday, January 9, 2017

Monday Message

"The best place to have some food set aside is within our homes. . .
"We can begin ever so modestly. We can begin with a one week's food supply and gradually build it to a month, and then to three months. . . . I fear that so many feel that a long-term food supply is so far beyond their reach that they make no effort at all.

"Begin in a small way, . . . and gradually build toward a reasonable objective." (Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley, Oct 2002 and quoted again in April 2007)

If you have not read last week’s post, please do. We are starting a new year and you will want to have that info.

Get yourself in a better place storage wise, money wise, frugal wise, skill wise.

Are you feeling like life is way to busy? That you feel like you are flying apart??

Time to analyze why. I know it is good to stand back and take a look. It is time to jot down where your time is spent. Take time to slow down and just breath.

I find what works for me. Doing a little everyday makes progress over time. When I suggest learning a skill, do it a little at a time if you are feeling overwhelmed just take a bite at a time. Same with getting storage or cleaning a closet.

But I will tell you that going full speed all the time is not a good thing. Your body cannot do that without a price to be paid.  Food for thought.

On that line of thinking, the best time to prepare for the unknown is to always be preparing. Learning a skill is harder during duress. It can still be learned but will be harder. So this is why I keep telling you to be working on the skills and storage. Living within your means is great but what if you lived on even less than that? Could it be done? Could you build a savings? Could you work on storage too? Hmmmm give this serious thought.

How often do you or someone in your home go to the grocery store? Does that put a huge drain on your budget?

Go to the store less often. I go once a month. I am not saying you need to be just like me. I was getting groceries at Aldis and a young gal noticed my list, as I make a plan of attack getting the most out of our food monies. She asked me if I was buying for a lot of people, I said why would you ask that as I only had three things in the cart. She said because of my list. I said oh no, I showed her in depth how I had certain things I got under different stores to find better deals. She was impressed and said she just gets and gets hollered at later. I keep adding as I go to not go over.  I saw her again at the bagging area and she commented again. I said I go once a month, she was shocked and said she didn’t even know that was possible and that I should write a book.

But if you go two times a month or every week, your goal is to stop your leak. Make your menus and grocery list, this is a great tool and huge time saver.

I like not going more often. It is hard on me as I have fibromyalgia but not having to go more often is great. - I love this gal. You will find helpful ideas on here. I would change one thing though for us, we are not coffee drinkers but we are hot cocoa people. Make your own mix for this and money saving will also be had.

I am going to tell you about me just to show how I break things down. I already mentioned I have fibromyalgia so already I have to work around that and you won’t, so things will be easier for you. Aren’t you lucky? I think so.

I do a lot to stretch our meager means...

I make bread. All our bread rolls, hamburger buns, pizza dough. I have to break things down like you have seen the bread recipe I use. - I make bread mixes by putting all the ingredients except water into canning jars. I use wide mouth quart jars.  I usually make 11 or 12 jars up at a time. This does take a few minutes to do an assembly line. But it is easy to put in the machine while I am setting up our breakfast. I know how to make by hand or mixer but this has helped so much. And you can find bread machines for three bucks at yard sales and thrift stores. I plug them in if they go “erup” they will work. I don’t bake in the machine though, you could, but I make bread or rolls or cinnamon rolls or hamburger buns.  I also know I can do this recipe and others by hand, it is a skill I have in my quiver.

When I make muffins I mix the dry ingredients in a bowl the night before, same with pizza dough.

I find cooking from scratch a huge help on the budget.

I have collected items over years to be frugal. I have done yard sales and thrift stores, even when we made better money I still did this. I have gotten sewing items and fabric, lots from Freecycle but yard sales too. Same with yarn and needles and hooks to work it up. I picked up or collected canning supplies and dehydrators and food savers. All used, also kitchen appliances and things that help me build my storage plus built the skills to do this.

I still am learning new skills weaving spinning and such. Most of you following the blog are aware I am learning more and building new skills. Some are skills that aren’t life or death skills but skills that I can make gifts for others on our limited income it is a must for us.

We have worked for companies that folded, so I know the hard things that go with loss of work. Usually you have no warning. So for me these times have forced me to learn skills like canning and growing food and drying foods and baking bread and cooking from scratch, mending and making clothes, knitting socks, scarves, hats, mittens.

Several things I am learning at once but I keep learning new skills. All the time one thing I want to learn is bobbin lace so I will take this and show you what I do when learning.

I break it down.

I looked online but back then it was really hard to find info, but I learned you need a pillow. So I made one out of a free dress fabric, it is like a velvet but is a stretchy fabric. I used this fabric on outside I made a muslin pillow, filled it with saw dust then sewed this closed and put on a piece of wood covered with the blue dress fabric. This saved lots since this was basically made for free. Then on b-days and Christmas dates and anniversary outings, we go to the used bookstore where I found books showing how to do this. 

Next to get bobbins, I was gifted some from my mother-in-law and this b-day my sister sent me 61 bobbins which is the number of this b-day. Threads I have gathered over the years from yard sales as I tat and crochet with these threads too, so all this was years in the making. Well with YouTube there are now many things out there on this so I will learn and do…

This is how I break it down, so you see eat that elephant one bite at a time.

When I try to get you to learn skills, take your learning a bite at a time. Same for getting storage. So you don’t need to break the bank to do these things or to be frugal, you just need to learn the basic skills.

You don’t have to do what I do as your needs may vary but remember things may look bad when things happen but the more skills that you have the better you will be able to manage.

In it all do not neglect your spiritual preparedness as well.

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