Monday, July 25, 2022

Monday Message

"The best food storage is not in welfare grain elevators but in sealed cans and bottles in the homes of our people. What a gratifying thing it is to see cans of wheat and rice and beans under the beds or in the pantries of women who have taken welfare responsibility into their own hands. Such food may not be tasty, but it will be nourishing if it has to be used." (President Gordon B. Hinckley)

Yes, we have to take our family's welfare very seriously.

While we see shortages now, it is what is ahead of us we need to be concerned with. There is severe drought in the south and crops are not growing but are dying instead.

We need to take this seriously for sure. Not only do we need to put in storage but we need to be building those skills. Like...

Seed saving


How to compost



Cooking from scratch

Bread making


Adjusting patterns to fit you




How to use tools

How to fix a broken window

How to clean and oil your sewing machine

Do plumbing


How to make yogurt

How to make cheese

Build your shelf stable recipe binder

How to make pasta

This list can go on and on.

If you know how to do things already then build on it. With internet you can look for free classes and info on skills.

I think to do things to beautify your home is a good skill as well. Share some things you would add to the list in the comments!

Take time to do fun things this week. I did just that - I made a frog.

These videos are so cute and inspired me to make my own froggy.

You can find the pattern here -

I have been spinning each day.

I have still been shifting things about to make things easier on me.

Mending -

Sewing -

Canning -

So here are some things to get you started.

The main thing is to get going quickly on building your skills and getting in storage.

Missy says get in your storage and load your box with skills.

Gus says you still need to be safe Covid numbers rising so think to get in things for the next wave and be safe.

Monday, July 18, 2022

Monday Message

"Our Heavenly Father created this beautiful earth, with all its abundance, for our benefit and use. His purpose is to provide for our needs as we walk in faith and obedience. He has lovingly commanded us to ‘prepare every needful thing’ (see D&C 109:8) so that, should adversity come, we may care for ourselves and our neighbors, and support bishops as they care for others." (All is Safely Gathered In pamphlet)

As I was just out weeding in the garden I thought physically there is no way I could grow enough to live on for a year. That is why it is important to store extra. Does this mean why try to grow? Nope, as it benefits us the money I would have spent on produce can now be spent on things I cannot grow. It is a frugal thing even though I personally do not like it, I still very much appreciate having the fresh produce. It is also exercise though I like the treadmill better. It all goes into assisting us and helping our budget.

I usually cannot grow cucumbers very well but for some reason they are growing this year. I kept looking at the little ones from the flowers on top and thought well, I guess it is too early for them yet, but today in there weeding I found all these goodies. There must be a parable in there somewhere.

We have been having such hot weather that the weeds seem to be running amuck. Japanese Beatles have found their way here, so many on the peach tree. I was dusting it with seven dust when I noticed about five peaches. I thought there would be none this year because we had a very late freeze, not frost but a freeze.

Now to distract Neanderthal while I get them when the time comes to pick them. Who is Neanderthal?  Well he is really a chipmunk but bigger than all I ever see and he has the shaggiest of coat, much like a caveman. He lives out front by the peach tree. I was hand watering my little bleeding heart, trying to keep it alive last year and I saw him by my bleeding heart and watched him. He looked up and made his arms going up and down like (  ) going from top to bottom following the lines of the parenthesis, over and over. I thought, well, we are in dry conditions and he has seen me come out and water this plant - I could only think he was saying oh fat one, come bring water...the little peach nabber...that year he kept setting off the door sensor as he would go into the tree and nab a peach over and over again.

I have been doing a bit of spinning each day.

Thankfully raspberry picking season is over, I am so glad to not get poked and scratched and eaten by bugs.

I did make two batches of jam and froze a lot more if I would like to make more jam in the future when it is cooler.

Remember, a couple of years ago I suggested to put together a binder of food storage info and go through your recipe, file finding things that you could make that if for some reason we had no refrigeration...

I continue to urge you to do this and to store the foods required to make the recipes.

Like if you make chicken and rice casserole. If you don't can chicken, then buy canned chicken from the store. Put it in your storage with rice and canned soup or whatever else your recipe has in it that can be shelf stable. I store powdered milk that opens up to being able to make things with milk in it.

I know it sounds like yucky recipes would be only shelf stable, so I took a pic of the table of contents of this binder.

You can see they are a lot of great tasting meals. Do I have more? Yes, I do. In other binders I have more that could be included in this one but it would get a lot heavier.

So again I say go through your favorite recipes and find the ones that could be made of all shelf stable ingredients that with just a bit of switching ingredients could still be made - like powdered milk for milk in the gallon or chicken for canned chicken.

You will notice beef recipes in mine, that is because I can meat so I can add those to my binder easily.

There are some who have gotten together to contribute shelf stable recipes... - here is one, I like what she is showing under it, click show more and you will see the recipe but under that you will see others in the shelf stable collaboration.

Missy says keep working on your skills and your storage, both are very important.

Gus says keep being safe, the virus is not over yet and looks to be increasing a bit.

Monday, July 11, 2022

Monday Message

"Preparedness, when properly pursued, is a way of life, not a sudden, spectacular program. We could refer to all the components of personal and family preparedness, not in relation to holocaust or disaster, but in cultivating a life-style that is on a day-to-day basis its own reward." (President Spencer W. Kimball)

Really it is easier than one would think. If your storage was in and you were making chicken and rice casserole and it called for one can of chicken, one can cream of mushroom soup and rice, you'd use those items and then on your grocery list you would write each of them down. When you come home from the store, just stick those items at the back of the shelf.

It is kind of like bookkeeping.

If we make it a practice, it will work great. If you are building a storage, get two of those items. It will add up. Remember, use the oldest first, that will keep it rotated. I don't care who you are, cans just go bad sometimes. I have gotten cans that are years old and one goes bad. I have gotten brand new cans and one goes bad...nothing you can do.

In weaving, as you get ready to measure your warp, you have to take into account loom waste. It makes a frugal person shudder to have any waste but in weaving there is some waste because you cannot weave all the way to the end. You just have to accept it as part of you decide not to weave because of it? No, it is part of the plan. Now when the project is done and cut off the loom, you can tie the next warp onto the waste if you are doing another of that project, or you could use it to tie off warp threads or find another project to use the waste in.

So I think if you choose not to get any storage because it might go bad, that would not be helpful to your family if you had a hardship come. For example, our ignition thingy went out in our oven, we have the part ordered and is on the way. We will install it to cut the cost but this was an unexpected expense. We will take it from the grocery budget as we have things in storage. 

This is why we have storage, to help even out those hard time things. Also having alternative ways to fix food in this case is helpful as well, like a crockpot or two. A microwave, a toaster oven, that sort of thing.  

When we moved here with our little girls so very many years ago, we had no stove and no refrigerator in the house that was useable. We had a freezer, a crockpot with a base that was like a small griddle, a microwave and a waffle iron. Was it more challenging? Yes, it was. Think of what one needs. Just take eggs for example, usually you need two. I would have to freeze the rest. Milk, we used smaller containers, again freezing the milk. Leftovers can be frozen. This was no short time without a refrigerator and stove. We came when it was hot. We had fourteen dollars, two kids and a cat. We had storage, family close by. I am a huge one for moving your storage with you since we always needed it when we got where we moved to. 

This was a really hard move. We moved from the east coast back to Iowa. This house was the only thing to rent, later we bought it. The house was targeted for demolition so it was in horrible condition.  Luckily the items in the freezer stayed frozen. It was hard at that time but we used our storage and cooked on those items I listed. We made French toast in the waffle iron and it became a favorite. We call it eggy waffle and it's very good. 

We made do. It was summer, so soon my husband got some illustrating jobs and we were able to get either a used stove or a used refrigerator for a hundred dollars. My preference was a stove. So we borrowed a truck from my sister-in-law and we were going to pick it up but before we left I wanted to check the free little paper to see if any of the yard sales listed had a better price. I looked through it - no stoves but one had two used refrigerators for fifteen dollars. So we went there and got one of the refrigerators and went and got the stove, so that indeed was a red letter day.

As time went on I found an electric frying pan at a yard sale. I picked it up thinking I sure could have used that during that time. I still have it as well. One other time a similar part went out in the oven we had. As I was getting ready to stick in an angel food cake I knew it went out right away since I always preheat the oven. I remembered reading somewhere that you could bake an angel food cake in an electric skillet if it was tall enough so I thought I would try. Yes, it is a tall electric skillet and yes, it cooked that cake.

These show that life doesn't always go smoothly.  Things happen...they always happen. My husband's mom always said if you got a dollar, something would always happened that would take two.

So having storage is so important for me to have. It has always gotten us through the rough times.

The part for our oven will be here on Tuesday where we will make the repair ourselves. We have watched how to do it on YouTube.

This week has been a very busy week here.

Gus eats too fast so this trick of using a muffin tin was given to us by our daughter. So I got out an extra mini muffin tin and they did not mind the change in containers, it has slowed him a little which helps.

It is that dreaded time of the year...raspberry picking time, hoping it soon is over. Usually it is done by the fourth of July but it may go a bit longer this year. I have made two batches of raspberry jam. The rest I have frozen and will make more jam on a cooler day in the fall.

The Easter Lilies were so pretty this year.

Even dandelions look pretty this year. We haven't had a lot of them, I wonder if because we have now been dry for so long...

It's so dry, I have had to start watering the garden. I had been waiting longer between watering but in this heat I have had to do more often. I'm trying not to raise the water bill too much. I water just the plants and not the spaces that I left for the vining things. I went to toss in some dill seed and oh my it was like digging a brick plus deep cracks.  The plants look good though.

This is the green bean seed I saved from last year. This year I thought having them grow up the porch would look pretty and easier to pick so I throw out the cat's water on it every day when I give them fresh water. Trying to conserve the water, I also water the salad pot on the porch and a geranium. Also, some tomatoes by the porch. They are a cherry type. I saved the seed from last year too. I squished the guts out of a few onto a paper napkin and let them dry. Then when the time comes to plant, I just rip off a spot of napkin with seeds on and plant it. I have done this a couple years now it is kind of like seed tape.

By the time you read this post raspberry picking will be well over and I will have a big smile to be done.

July first started the Tour De Fleece which I just kind of do more spinning at that time when I can. Other spinners join together and spin in teams. It is to go at same time as Tour De France.

At the time I'm writing this, they set the carnival up across the street for the Fourth of July.

Missy says keep working on building those skills.

Gus says I am not fast enough to have gotten the cutest pic with crossed paws but he says keep working at the storage and growing things, even if you hate picking raspberries.

Monday, July 4, 2022

Monday Message

"Our Heavenly Father created this beautiful earth, with all its abundance, for our benefit and use. His purpose is to provide for our needs as we walk in faith and obedience. He has lovingly commanded us to ‘prepare every needful thing’ (see D&C 109:8) so that, should adversity come, we may care for ourselves and our neighbors, and support bishops as they care for others." (All is Safely Gathered In pamphlet)

With coming events we need not fear. Just lean into the wind and push on.

We have always faced hardship before. We know what we need to do - pull on all our frugal knowledge and skills.

Build on what skills we have.

So I thought we should all look over what things we did build skills-wise and make a list of them. I think you will be surprised at what you have accomplished.

I work in the kitchen stretching our food dollars. Always looking and studying on how I can be more frugal.

I learned how to make a pattern from a shirt I had that fit well but was worn out, then made a new shirt

I planted seeds and put them in the garden and planted fruit trees and asparagus, rhubarb, and strawberries. To me this is monumental since I very much hate gardening. Right now I will be picking raspberries so I just know bugs are in formation ready to attack me.

I learned a new way to dye fiber.

I learned how to dye fiber and spin it into yarn.

I learned how to warp the loom up with dish towels - no easy thing, it took days. So I am now working on those. Next I learned how to make two scarves on the table-top loom then made dish cloths on it.

Lastly, I made a sweater and learned so much from doing this.

Now this list is not to brag at all. There are people out there who do so much better. It is to show you that we have done hard things and have learned skills that will help us for what lies ahead.

We may not be totally prepared as we all know our money now does not go very far.

We can work with what we have instead of buying some expensive container.

Make things with scraps, it is amazing what you end up with.

So work with what you have.

Missy says pick up something for your storage every time you go in a store like a box of band-aids or a box of Jell-o or will add up.

Gus said do more planning and consolidate your trips, saving time and money.

We will get through this hard time. Remember, do the best you can.

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