Monday, July 31, 2023

Monday Message

"Those families will be fortunate who, in the last days, have an adequate supply of food because of their foresight and ability to produce their own." (Ezra Taft Benson)

It is a busy time with gardens and putting up food.  

It is good to put up food for winter months. If you cannot dehydrate or can food, look into freezing it.,Seal%20tightly%2C%20label%20and%20freeze - here is some information on freezing foods.

We just all have to do the best we can with what we have.

Besides tending the garden this week, I decided to clear my closet.

It was hard work but cleared it of things no longer fitting me. So I took the clothing to the pantry, they do a great service. It is like a big yard sale only free for anyone who would like it.

Well, I was hurting but the next day I did my husband's closet. Those I will take to the same place in the morning (Saturday). They are only open certain times a few days a week, all who run it are volunteers.

Really, we don't have regular closets as our house was built in 1879. Needless to say, really hurting now but glad it is tended.

I have started a third dress, hopefully it will be done soon. You can see the fabric for it at the top of the page. This shows the red truck I would like to make into a pincushion.

It really has been a busy time.

We have heat coming next week so I have been planning some cooking ahead for when I don't want to heat up the house. Today I made granola so that will be done.

What do you find yourself doing when it is awful hot outside?

If I am rested enough maybe I will tend to some working in the basement. It is cool down there so that might be my plans.

This week we found a sturdy table to use for the sock machine. My husband had to make a small adjustment to the table and this is kind of taken in the middle of switching. You remember I worked in the sewing room, this was just after that. I was setting up a water color area for me to work better at so this was in the midst of that as the white cart had watercolor stuff on it but with an area I moved stuff there freeing up this cart which I then....

...filled with my embroidery supplies and the brown cart next to it has my bobbin lace supplies in it.

So now I have a spot to watercolor. I have my stuff here so now I think I am done playing musical carts.

I also think I will take a break from cleaning and organizing.

Missy says take a break read up on skills.

Tippy Longstockings says oh my! Don't work too hard in this heat!

Monday, July 24, 2023

Monday Message

"Most of us cannot afford to store a year’s supply of luxury items, but find it more practical to store staples that might keep us from starving in case of emergency." (James E. Faust)

Just pick up what you can. I know that at some point I will be making raspberry jam so I add ingredients to my grocery list so that I have it on hand for when I am ready to make jam. This will not put a strain on my budget by spreading it out. I know it will be in late fall when I make the jam.

You can do this with lots of things like school supplies and clothes, pick them up all summer then when you find that more items are needed you will just need to get those items. When it came to clothing, I would find things ahead at yard sales. Like I knew we would need snow pants and winter coats, boots, mittens, hats, stuff like that. I know kids grow fast so I tried to anticipate that.

Same is true with so much in our lives. If we can look ahead and see what is needed and work on it a little at a time, for me it works. Money was always tight getting ready for school. If you have some storage set aside that is good. We would use it when these times came to divert money where it was needed. But the key is never to let it run out. When times are good, stock back up.

Look at fashions, those that aren't horrid you can use your sewing skills to update older clothes.

Life is a struggle but look for ways to be more frugal. Build those skills. Mend things before they get really bad plus I don't like a growing pile of mending. So if I notice something, I do it as soon as I can.

We are now going back into heat so I think on what meals would be easier to fix on hot days. When you make up your menus for the month, be sure you have some ready for those very hot days. We like zucchini sandwiches. They're easy to fix and it's like eating out at a special place, plus it doesn't heat things up.

Zucchini Sandwiches (this amount makes enough for two so build it up if you need more)

I cut a zucchini in half the long ways then slice. I put a couple tablespoons of butter melting in my dying pan. To this I add a bit of garlic salt, just a sprinkle as there will be more and a pinch of dried garlic and two tablespoons of dried onion. 

Put the zucchini in and just cook on medium heat. I add more garlic salt, onion, and garlic. I use dried so that I always have it on hand but use the fresh if you wish. When the zucchini is about half done, dice a tomato and add it, mix it up. When the zucchini is done (I like a bit of crisp on it) you put parmesan cheese on top, cook till melted. 

In the meantime, take and butter two hamburger buns, sprinkle with garlic salt and cook face down till golden. Take the bun grill side up and scoop some of the zucchini mixture on top. We absolutely love this.  

Zucchini will take on the taste of what you cook with it. I make an apple pie with only zucchini, no apples, but you would think they are apples as they taste just like apples. You would need me to tell you they weren't.

So don't rule this veggie out.

This I made for the sewing room some years back, it is the directions from a vintage pattern. The pattern is so interesting, will never fit me or even just my bones, but they had no directions on the pattern only holes punched. I guess one hole to one hole, two to two. Sort of thing is very interesting.

I have been sewing on two dresses from pieces I had, which meant I had to be very creative when it came to fitting the pieces on. That said, you can see my pattern weight, she is a cutie. Missy loves it when I sew, she said if only she had thumbs.

This is a cat conversation that was had this week...

Tippy Longsstockings said, "I think today is canceled due to lack of interest, and tomorrow is not looking too good either."

Missy says, "I'll second that."

The garden is keeping me busy.

Finally getting some good tomatoes. I have waited for them to turn red but I need to pick though before they are fully red or the insects will get to them.

Lots of things are blooming!

This last picture is of the mint. It is shoulder high, very pretty and nice smelling.

The peach tree is totally loaded. It has seven braces holding it up with all the weight. I am drooling :p

Missy says keep moving forward with a smile on your face.

Tippy Longstockings says be sure to take time to rest.

Monday, July 17, 2023

Monday Message

"Start now to create a plan if you don’t already have one, or update your present plan. Watch for best buys that will fit into your year’s supply. We are not in a situation that requires panic buying, but we do need to be careful in purchasing and rotating the storage that we’re putting away. The instability in the world today makes it imperative that we take heed of the counsel and prepare for the future." (L. Tom Perry)

At the time of the writing of this post, we have a gentle cool shower so the garden will be most pleased. I am just letting nature water the garden this year so the water bill will not be so high. The garden is doing very well even with all the long dry hot weather we have had.

This week I have been working very hard at a deep clean and organizing in the sewing room and so now that it is totally done and I can rest from that.

I also have been working on a talk for church on Sunday. Public speaking is not something I enjoy. I would rather have major surgery. Doing the deep cleaning and organizing has kept my mind off my fear of speaking...probably why I decided to do it this week. But I am pleased with the results.

The dress I was making as a test for this pattern and a different size has worked out well, better than I expected.

I did the dress as a test never expecting it to turn out on the first go but it did.

I sewed on these buttons I had in my stash on the bodice front just for decoration.

This belt didn't originally go with the dress. I had to remake it so that it would match it.  

I have other dresses I have been wanting to make with this pattern but first had to see if I needed to make any alterations.

Total cost of this dress was only my time and electricity. The fabric was from freecycle, the buttons were in my stash for unknown years, the hardware for the belt is recycled from a dress I no longer have. The clips on this belt are mitten clips so I will salvage them and I will undo and use the elastic in the belt for the new belt.

Here is a picture of it finished!

I have been picking green beans, yum!

I have lots of tomatoes growing, I look forward to those.

The peach tree is loaded. I really look forward to those as well.

It is the in between times for the garden but I am really looking forward to eating the good foods. I feel like I am sitting out there with a knife and fork drooling...

The break in the hot weather is a very welcome thing indeed after being so hot.

How are the grocery prices in your area? I still feel like they haven't started coming down so keep working as you can at building your storage. Look for sales to stock up on when you can. I know that dollars are being pulled away from us in all different directions. - this has a few less expensive meals. - this breaks it down price per serving. - can't ever go wrong with Taste of Home.

These sites might spur on ideas of your own too.

How are you coming on building your skills? I know it is so busy right now, try to just learn one little thing when you can, like learn to hem or sew a button or sew a straight seam. You won't always be very busy and one skill or part of one skill is better than no skill learning.

We just all do the best that we can and I am here to say you're doing great cause I think you are.

Missy says keep after it, the price for gibble keeps getting higher.

Tippy Longstockings says some days it is enough to rest with your toys and that is okay too.

Monday, July 10, 2023

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)

Keep working at putting a few things ahead in your storage. Keep building your skills. Everything we can do now when we don't have to rely on your skills will help you when you do need to.

Even if you never have the emergency that would require the skill, the more we can do for ourselves the more it will help with our budget.  

If we have things we can do, the money we would not be spending could be used on other bills. But mostly we wouldn't need to scrimp elsewhere to pull money together to pay for what we could do ourselves. That is a lengthy way to say - the more skills we can teach ourselves, the better things will be for our families.

I have a plan to take everything out of my sewing area and start fresh in a better way, using what I have. I am sewing myself a dress and it has been very tight working in there. I just have to add the sleeves and that is when I plan to do this so very soon as the dress is almost done. I have been working on it this week trying to build my sewing skill better. - this gal has some great ideas on how to save on fabrics. She has made fantastic dresses out of vintage sheets. If you watch her other videos she makes two coats out of blankets and she walks you through how to do many things. - this is the same gal, she is going to show you how to knit a sweater from start to finish.

These are a few things to help you build on skills you already have, like I am with my sewing or skills you can start.

How I teach myself...

I find books on what I want to learn. If you cannot find books thrifting, go to your library. I even have gotten very good sewing books from library book sales. Do not rule out the internet, there's so many things you now can learn on there.

I gather information. For example - watercolor is something I want to learn. At library book sales I picked up a few books years ago, then we had our anniversary trip to the used bookstore where I picked up another. Over the years I have gathered what I would need. Then I have been watching YouTube to find what people I like who teach free and study them. Several take you step by step like a tutorial. This will be a new skill for me.

I also have bobbin lace that I am trying to learn past just making bookmarks. So again I gathered used books and gathered supplies. My sister for my b-day one year gave me bobbins. In this picture I have just loaded the bobbins with thread I had. I will be studying the pattern. My sister, knowing I am wanting to learn it more, sent this video of what I want to make - Scroll down you can see her working the bobbins.

So you can see my process. This is the method that has helped me a lot more than classes plus, I don't have the cost of the class, scheduling, driving, and I can go at my own pace.

A story about me when I was about four and my sister was two. We lived in Wyoming. Times were different back then. On this day we were going for a walk out in the vast prairie. I am pretty sure we were told to stay by the fence line, probably so whoever was keeping an eye on us could easily see us. Well off we went, after awhile we came to a wooden box just laying open on its side. Now I know there was packing stuff in the box but back then I did not know. Inside there were very pretty dishes with flowers on them. We plaid with those dishes for hours. This is a happy memory for me. Over the years I would see a platter or plates with flowers on them and I think of that day so I have just a small collection of flower dishes.

I like to decorate with them, they make me happy.

Missy, who is setting by the colored pencil books from a library book sale from many years ago, says never stop learning!! 

Tippy Longstockings says learn and then teach others, like teach your kids about budgeting and storage and how to make bread. There's so much to learn!

Monday, July 3, 2023

Monday Message

"I wish to urge again the importance of self-reliance on the part of every individual Church member and family. None of us knows when a catastrophe might strike. Sickness, injury, unemployment may affect any of us. We have a great welfare program with facilities for such things as grain storage in various areas. It is important that we do this. But the best place to have some food set aside is within our homes, together with a little money in savings. The best welfare program is our own welfare program. Five or six cans of wheat in the home are better than a bushel in the welfare granary." (President Gordon B. Hinckley)

Many things have happened since this was said to us. Some of us have lost our jobs, we had a pandemic and the list goes on...we need to keep after this.

We got notified our utility bill is going up. We had been notified our health insurance is doubling and for July they are doubling the doubling for that month. So things keep going up have no idea at what point none of this will be sustainable. I saw on TV that house insurance was going up across the board  everyone will pay more. With no end in sight, we have to learn more frugal ways of doing things. This is a skill we all need to be working on. I think too we need to think about preserving food we are growing or can pick up from truck, farms, etc.

Sometimes you hate certain things but still you need to push through. One of those things for me is picking raspberries. It is a real pain, literally.

I get two bags for the freezer a day right now. I look forward to the end of the season very much. It usually ends by the fourth of July. I make jam from these when the weather cools.

Then I like them but at this end, I hate doing the picking part. - I thought this was a great idea so I am drying some strawberry skins even now.

Remember going to thrift stores is frugal. This week I got two books...

I found this bread book from Taste of Home. It has favorite recipes that were submitted. So I deemed this would be a helpful book to get.

This for me is cheaper than taking classes. So this too saves money and I can learn.

Years ago at a library book sale I bought these packets, each one a tutorial, but the problem was the pages are loose, so I punched holes and put them in a binder. This makes it easier to use as I learn lessons on colored pencils.

I feel I gain much more learning from books and tutorials.

I am making a test dress to see how it will work out then I have others I want to make building sewing skills

I needed to send a thank you card, so I made one. This is frugal. I am trying to further my skill as card maker.

I am learning more tatting skills by making these bookmarks and starting to get gifts ahead at the same time for any of those last minute gifts. Being frugal and developing skills help to give nice and meaningful gifts.

I am still working on advent gifts for my husband and I. They are inexpensive gifts, one for each of us to open before breakfast leading up to and including Christmas day. It is a more frugal way for us to celebrate.

This will be our second year.

I also found this thrifting as well. Beautifying our homes is good too.

This book shelf was built by my husband. It houses books I like to read which are called Cozy Who-Done-Its. Most of these were given to me free as libraries have swap books section, so free frugal entertainment.

Just a few frugal things I have done this week. What frugal things have you done? We would love to learn new ideas!

Missy says now is not the time to be complacent about building skills and putting in storage.

Tippy Longstockings says use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without and to take good care of what you have.

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