Monday, June 26, 2023

Monday Message

"Our bishops storehouses are not intended to stock enough commodities to care for all the members of the Church. Storehouses are only established to care for the poor and the needy. For this reason, members of the Church have been instructed to personally store a year’s supply of food, clothing, and, where possible, fuel. By following this counsel, most members will be prepared and able to care for themselves and their family members, and be able to share with others as may be needed." (President Ezra Taft Benson)

Making storage and frugal living a way of life will feel like normal when you do this daily. We sometimes are tempted to just toss it out when you get to that last crust no one ate or this week for me I had a plastic container strawberries came in. I had it in my hands heading to the garbage can and I looked at it and remembered I had seen somewhere that you could use them to start garden seed so I saved it. This has a lid and will save on covering them with plastic wrap when planting seedling time comes next year.

So think before you toss things. Remember, you can compost kitchen scraps to use on next year's garden. If you planted a garden, try to save seed from it in the late fall. Again, planting things that come back on their own every year is a good thing to help with costs every year.

When it comes to clothing, you can make your own items or mend them to make them last longer. - mending ideas that are fun that could help you learn to mend and look fun to have.

Make your own spice mixes. - this shows ways we can make our own items for less. We need to keep looking for frugal ways to do things. Times are still tough. I know I hear grocery prices are coming down but I have yet to see it plus other things keep going up. Kind of like getting it from all angles right now.

I decided to water the garden less even though we are drought-like right now and I hand water things that need a little extra. This is making things go deep for water. If I see they need some, I can carry it out. This will help our water bill and will help get them to rain that may come.

I know this angle makes everything look crowded but it isn't. I wanted you to see the grass in the top left corner we are very much dry.

I know it is seemingly a small thing but pennies build up over time.

We had our 49th anniversary this week. We like to go to Half-Price Books to celebrate. I can tell you I notice a big jump in prices. Things that used to be $2.99 are now $9.99 and lots higher. Times are tight for all.

This is Tippy telling Missy how expensive the bookstore was.

And living inside a budget that is gasping for air, we need to keep doing it anyway. It isn't easy and not fun but necessary. It's all a way of life for sure.

How are you doing with tighter times? Is there a way you have found to cut corners?

Years ago we were given Easter lilies. That year I think we were given three and I heard you could plant them and so I did and now they look like this.

They come back every year we were given all white and one pink one here is how they look now...

I was gifted a second wool genie for Mother's Day so I could do colorwork. Here is a picture of me starting a new project a cowl with what I had on hand...

This is the solution to my carrying them up and down stairs as I work in both places. It works great.  This is a basket I made a couple years ago it is the perfect solution.

This is how the project is going so far.

This is Tippy Longstockings guarding the project (more like can I get away with messing with it?) :p

How are you coming on building skills? This is just as important as building storage.

Missy says take time to ponder and learn new skills

Tippy Longstockings say it isn't time to be lax in getting in your storage and learning basic skills, they all are needed now more than ever!

Monday, June 19, 2023

Monday Message

"The counsel to have a year’s supply of basic food, clothing, and commodities was given fifty years ago and has been repeated many times since. 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 … [and] God will sustain us through our trials." (James E. Faust)

I think squirrels are good at storing nuts and just awful at finding them. I keep cutting down little walnut trees all over the yard. So if you store food, be sure you can find it!

The smoke from the Canadian wildfires keeps me from going outside to do much due to asthma. I cannot imagine the damage and the manpower to put them out, so sad.

So much going on that is destructive, we do need to keep building our storage but even more, we need to store the basics and build skills to work with them. It isn't enough to say I have twenty-five pounds of wheat, if we don't know how to use it. There are skills you need to know...first, if you go from store-bought white bread to whole wheat everything, your children will revolt. It won't be pretty :p

Do you have a way to grind it? Makes me think of the Long Winter by Laura Ingalls Wilder. Her family had only the coffee mill to grind the wheat they were able to get. They had ingenuity and lots of skills.

It is hard for kids to go from store-bought bread to homemade bread, let alone wheat bread.

I cannot do red wheat as it causes my digestion issues but white wheat I have no issues. So I store white wheat. Only store what you eat. This is very important. If you think if you'll get hungry enough you will eat it...nope, no way does that work. So just store items you eat. Store the things to make what you like.  If you store flour just think how many things you can make out of flour, not just bread but cakes, cookies, pancakes, waffles, brownies, and gravies, pies, you name it. So store ingredients to go with it like shortening, yeast, baking powder, salt, sugar, baking soda, the basics.

And be sure to get those basics ahead for when you're in a time of need.

As soon as temps dropped I made a batch of granola. This is a basic healthy version.

Healthy Granola

One large container of old fashion oats

One large can of frozen apple juice

1/4 cup real maple syrup

I use pecans, as much as you like.

1 Tbsp or 2 of cinnamon

I mix together and spread on sided cookie sheets. Put in the oven at 200 degrees, stir every half hour till this is dry (I turn it off and leave in oven overnight if it takes too long then I check, if still not dry, turn on oven and do this for another hour till dry). Cool and put in airtight container. This can be added to, if you want to add fruit and other things, it is up to you. I like to sprinkle this on yogurt. My husband likes it to top his cereal or snack on it. I think it would be good to sprinkle on muffins before baking.

I would suggest making a binder with recipes using the basics.

This is why I suggest getting some of those old church cookbooks. Because these usually have ingredients that are basic and in our storage. - if you don't yet have a wheat grinder, these pancakes are easy to make with wheat berries and your blender and are soooooo good.

This week I finally got those project bags sewed up.

It is hard for you to see in the picture but I have an old sewing machine in a cabinet where if I flip down the top it gives me an extra surface for working on.

These are the project bags I have worked up. I am looking forward to putting them to work.

Keep working on skill building as well, these are good things to have in your bucket.

Missy says build your skills. She is watching me sew, she is building her skills she says.

Tippy Longstockings says store things you eat, she says she wouldn't like to eat icky things.

Monday, June 12, 2023

Monday Message

"A cardinal principle of the gospel is to prepare for the day of scarcity. Work, industry, frugality are part of the royal order of life." (Bishop Keith B. McMullin)

How are you doing on your gardens or potted plants?

Here is ours. So far doing well. It loved the downpours we got yesterday.

Remember when we got those two days of a late freeze and I worried we would get no peaches...

I need not have worried. The tree is loaded with peaches so much so we have had to already support a branch...yay!

So here's an update on Missy and Tippy Longstockings - they are doing well, Missy is hissing not as much as she was in the beginning.

Just a few pics to show Missy is starting to warm up. I love the one where they are looking into each others eyes, no hissing on Missy's part, just having the standard sibling stare down. Tippy (Longstockings) doesn't hiss. She looks like she is copying Missy at the bottom of the bed, fun antics :p Every cat has to pay a cat tax by having a photoshoot.

Then being frugal, I just was messing with cardboard boxes to make cardboard of fun.

Is it fun? you ask. I think it is....

My week has been filled with the standard doctor appointments and eye exams, which I hate but my husband is okay with. I don't like the fuzzy eye stuff that stays with me for hours.

So now that those are done, I did a bit more organizing. Still have a bookshelf to straighten and a wicker dresser housing stuff for embroidery to organize. I did put together a basket to carry up or down stairs to work on embroidery.

I know it seems I talk about organizing a lot. With fibromyalgia, I am always trying to streamline  things to make my chores easier.

I did start a batch of yogurt.

I also made a batch of granola. I don't eat it much, just to sprinkle over yogurt so was going to pick up a package, how much could it cost? Oh my word, it is very costly. so I did my own. My husband loves it, he likes the fruits in it and etc. but I used my healthier version where you just mix apple juice and stir like you do the regular. I added pecans halfway through and added cinnamon when done. I have other recipes that call for yummier things but this one is good too. I kept this jar out for sprinkling on yogurt and the rest I put the goodies in my husband likes. All for really really less cost than the store for way way more in amount.

So keep looking for those frugal things that can help your family. I could have bought the bag of granola, that would have been easier but by pushing on doing my own, I save that money to use elsewhere on my grocery list. So far not noticing prices coming down yet, so we keep doing the best we can, right? Yes, we do!

Missy says when you find a favorite frugal thing like a well-used grocery bag stick with it, own it :p

Tippy Longstockings says frugal is not a bad thing at all. It saves our budget and we can get priorities right. Continue to be frugal.

Monday, June 5, 2023

Monday Message

"Today, I emphasize a most basic principle: home production and storage. Have you ever paused to realize what would happen to your community or nation if transportation were paralyzed or if we had a war or depression? How would you and your neighbors obtain food? How long would the corner grocery store—or supermarket—sustain the needs of the community?" (President Ezra Taft Benson)

I think we know now that this can happen any time. Today I heard Germany was in a recession, they said they were the fourth largest economy.

It is a good thing to do whatever we can to be in a prepared state for anything that may hit, unemployment is always a possibility. It seems like a lot more of that at this time so we need to find ways to be more frugal and put those ways into practice.

Here in the center of the US it is gardening time, so put out some seeds. - did you ever make crackers? They are easier than you might think and tastier too! - bread sticks. I like how she bags them to freeze for future meals. These remind me of those we used to get at Pizza Hut. - these are free, would be great to have in a binder for a fast grab when you need it.

It is the simple things we tend to put off, promising that we will get to it down the road.

Do things feel like they are upside down and out of control? (Tippy says yes) Sometimes I feel like I can't control anything so at those times I think of something I can organize or clean, which I seem to do a lot.

This week I found a small cart I put in kitchen.

It works much better and I took that other cart and moved it upstairs.

I organized my watercolor supplies in it which meant I took the cart from there and moved it to the sewing room.

Then I organized sewing notions and fabric in it.

So a bad case of musical carts. This helped me to be better organized for just a bit over three dollars. With the cart with sides it was harder to get what I needed in the kitchen. The now kitchen cart I had the cloth baskets already so I can just slide out to get the needed things. The other cart now holds the watercolor supplies better than the cart I moved into sewing room and now I can easily get to needed things.

The whole thing was something I could control when the world is crazy upside down.

An extra benefit was that I found fabrics I want to make two project bags with in my stash.

While I was at it, I tidied my desk up.

The garden is doing well, however, we have not had rain and our overnight temps are under fifty degrees, it still is going and so am I.

So look for ways that are frugal this week.

Missy says you all are doing great, keep working on your storage and skills.

Tippy (toes) says if you find yourself stressing because the world feels upside down and you can't do anything to help...find a corner that needs sorting out and work on it.

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