Every Day

Not Pinterest Worthy But It Works For Us

While I am following doctor’s orders, I have been staying home and organizing a little at a time while resting in between. My stomach surgeon is thrilled that I have lost 26 lbs. and he released me today. Four more pounds and I have to get a few clothes in a smaller size. Mine are falling off of me.

Now am dealing with a different doctor from the 2nd hospitalization. He is doing a test next week which will tell if there is a problem. I am hoping not and that he will release me. I need my life back.

I had my grandson here and we played a lot of games because it was rainy weather. But Hubby spent much more time with him than I did so that I could do this project and rest in between. It was nice to see the two “boys” having so much fun.

Both of my pantries became really unmanageable the last couple of months. So they really needed some organization. Hubby is eating up most of the carbs in the house and I have donated a lot too. I do keep candy for the grandchildren. I also have a lot of baking supplies because I bake for family breakfasts and for neighbors and potlucks. Pictured above is the top of my large pantry.

This picture is the lower shelves and the floor area.

Next is the snack and cracker pantry.

I also cleaned out and organized my two freezer drawers in the fridge. I had a few freezer bins that helped. 

I have not been doing a lot of shopping. We have so much in our freezers and pantries that I only need produce and creamer about once every 10 days. 

I have done some shopping online though. I convinced Hubby to get a FitBit like I have so I ordered that. And for some reason, we have hardly any AAA batteries in the house so I ordered 12.

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.

Any questions or comments you can leave below. 

Every Day

Ten Things We Don’t Spend Money On

Ten things we don’t spend money on:

1) We have never purchased an extended warranty. In 50+ years we have never had anything happen which would have been paid by that warranty. If you research well when you buy something, chances are that it will not fall apart for a long, long time.

2) We do not buy top of the line appliances. We have always purchased mid range and they have served us well.

3) We do not use premium gasoline in our car. 90% of the cars in America do not need premium gas. It is a waste of money if you are putting it in your car and you don’t need it.

4) We don’t rent movies. We have plenty to watch on cable, Amazon Prime, and cheap Hulu: $.99 a month for a year. I went to my first movie in 11 years last summer so that is not something we regularly spend on either. 

5) We don’t purchase music and  never purchase fiction books. The library has plenty we can borrow.

6) We don’t purchase magazines. We have just one subscription for Hubby and it is a gift to him each year from his son.

7) We don’t buy video games.  

8) I won’t spend money at a nail salon. I give manicures and pedicures to myself.

9) We don’t spend money on coffee outside of our home. If we want coffee while driving, we make and bring our own.

10) We have never spent money on bank fees. We do business with a credit union that does not charge us even for their ATM’s. 

I am very curious as to what you don’t spend money on. Please leave a comment and share with all of us. Perhaps we can each learn from you.

Every Day

Missing In Action

I was just released from the hospital after being admitted earlier in the week. It’s been a rough year. So that is why my posts have been missing. I will catch up on comments next week.

I will be absent from here until after Easter. I hope all of you and your families have a Happy and Blessed Easter.

Every Day

What Do You Teach Your Children?

Besides manners and handling money, one of the most important things we taught our children was skills that they have used over and over again as they live their own lives.

I taught them to do laundry and clean the house. They did this for many years when they were in high school and I worked. Both of my sons can cook also. One is a great baker which he learned in school.

Hubby taught them many things that they still use to maintain their cars. They do their own brakes and have replaced rotors. They change their own oil and replace other parts as they are needed. They are now in their forties and have learned how to do other automotive repairs as needed.

Whenever Hubby was doing any kind of maintenance or repairs in the house he had them help even if it was just watching although he had them fetch a lot.

They know how to paint and they have helped put up wallpaper. They know how to prepare a wall for painting by filling the holes, cracks, or rough areas with putty and sanding when it is dry. They know how to put up wainscoting.

They helped whenever Hubby was building anything. When Hubby put in a huge patio they helped. If he was building something out of wood they helped. Just a couple of years ago, Hubby helped one son add a huge pantry to their kitchen area.
They helped put in real hard wood floors in our large dining room and living room of one of our homes.

Whenever Hubby was fixing a plumbing issue, they helped and learned. They helped put in new wax seals around a toilet in one of our bathrooms. 

They watched him do electrical like putting in new lights.

They learned how to mow a lawn, put in landscaping and weed. They learned how to seal a driveway. They learned how to snow blow the driveway. One son worked a summer job putting in landscaping. It was hard dirty work but he learned how to do it. The other son took a job with a local alarm system installer and learned the trade. Those skills have helped them today.

They were taught how to take care of our inground pool whether it was cleaning it, chlorinating it, or closing it for the winter.

They can or still do these things today. These skills have saved them a fortune in money over the years that they have been married.  

Do you want your children to grow up and have to hire someone to do everything? Plumbers, electricians, construction people, landscaping and lawn mowing people, painters, driveway people, etc. are all very expensive to hire.

Hubby’s father did not teach him how to do all of these things. He learned by research and that was back before the internet. Now the internet makes it easier because almost everything you want to do has a video on YouTube. 

So teach your children how to do these things so that they can save their money for other important things. It is one of the best things you can do for them as they are growing up.

Every Day

Guess What I Am Doing This Weekend

Yes, it is organizing weekend! I spent yesterday shopping. Trips to Dollar Tree, Five Below, Target, Big Lots, and Niagara Produce were on my agenda.

Big Lots has changed so much and I am loving popping in there anytime I go by. I loved the dish towels I got there last time and I wanted more before they were gone. They are so absorbent. I also found dish cloths this time to match. I needed another large spoon and a new veggie peeler. Mine was so old it wouldn’t peel anymore. The measuring cups were not the ones I wanted so they are going back. I don’t know what I was thinking. I love the OXO angled ones so I ordered them at Amazon.

The hand soaps are only a $1.00 and the scents are terrific. I also grabbed some emery boards because I forgot to get them at Dollar Tree. And I found Teriyaki sauce that has the lowest sugar and carbs that I have ever seen. 

The organizing bins I ended up getting at Dollar Tree and Target. The low profile bins had covers and were on clearance at Target for $2.00 each. Score!  I love the locker type bins at Dollar Tree. They had just gotten a shipment so I was able to get many. The small drawer organizers are perfect and they has just been restocked too so I was very happy. I use the poster tack to keep them from moving around in my drawers when I open them.

The ones on the right have already helped me organize my medicine cabinet. I was so tired of reaching for something and something small would get knocked out. So I used those to corral that problem. I have one empty shelf up top.

So are your organizing or cleaning this weekend? 

Every Day

A Little Of This and A Little Of That

Our government here in New York has banned plastic bags effective March 31, 2020. Knowing that they were probably going to do this, I have been saving every one that comes into the house for months and I will continue to save them. I have a plastic bag dispenser inside one of my pantries for the ones that I will use over the next few months. The rest are being stored in empty Kleenex boxes in my basement stockpile. 

Why you ask? Because I reuse them for my garbage. In our town all garbage must be bagged before you put it in your trash can. So I empty waste baskets from all over the house into these little bags. That way I can save the expensive tall kitchen garbage ones that I buy for just the kitchen waste basket. 

We have some people who walk their dogs in our neighborhood who don’t live in here and don’t always pick up after their dogs. So those bags are what I use to clean it up. Most of my neighbors pick up after their dogs.

I expect that when the new law goes into effect here that tall kitchen garbage bags and those black trash bags will rise in price. So by using what I have, I make mine last longer. 

Last month I found a new product that we love. It is G Hughes Smokehouse Sugar Free BBQ Sauce. Walmart carries it for $7.52 for a 2 pack. We tried the Hickory flavor but they have other flavors too which Hubby and I will be trying. This is delicious! So many SF products don’t taste good but this one is definitely a keeper. I made a pan of BBQ chicken the other night and even Hubby loved it. And my Hubby is very fussy. So if you have a diabetic in the family or just don’t want sugar in the products you eat, give it a try. 

I am rearranging my kitchen cupboards again to make things easier for me as I age. This is the results after I rearranged my beverage cupboard. I think you have all seen that I keep my Keurig on my kitchen counter along with our sugar free syrups and whipped toppings that we make our coffee with. Everything else is in the cupboard above these things. The only new container I purchased was my
tea box .  Th organization doesn’t need to be pretty. It just needs to be functional.

For those of you that don’t know, you can click on the pictures and they will get bigger. That is a tip for my senior readers who may not see as well as they used to and that includes me. 

Today will be a quiet day spent at home. I will continue working on my organization projects. Dinner tonight will be mandarin orange chicken for Hubby so that he can finish up the rice. I will finish the last bit of BBQ chicken and the broccoli.

Any of you doing any organizing now that Spring is here? Feel free to leave a comment and share with us.

Every Day

Planning For Easter

I love Easter, not only because of the Resurrection but because I love having family and watching the grandchildren enjoy their Easter baskets. It also makes me believe that Spring may finally stick around. Unfortunately, my family in Eastern NY will not be able to come this year. So I have already sent my granddaughter’s gift.

However my son, DIL, and West will be joining us. I was going to cook a turkey dinner but Hubby wants leg of lamb. He loves Australian lamb and you can only find it on sale at this time of the year. Instead of paying $ 9.99 a lb, I found it on sale this week for $ 6.49 a lb. I bought 2 boneless legs of lamb. The semi- boneless are on sale for $1.00 less per lb. However, I felt that it was worth paying that $1.00 per lb to get boneless. 

I purchased a 6.98 lb. one for Easter dinner. The other one which I will save in the freezer for a few months was 5.73 lbs. The larger one will feed 5 of us and give me leftovers for the week.

I have a special recipe that I will share with you on how I cook it. I have made this almost every Easter since we got married.

1 boneless leg of lamb( or you can use one with a bone)

Olive Oil

2 Tsps. Salt

3 Tsps. of Oregano

1 Tsp. Pepper

2 Minced Garlic Clove

2 cans of Beef Consomme

16. oz of Tomato Sauce

Brush the lamb with olive oil and put in a roasting pan. Sprinkle with salt, oregano and pepper. Add the garlic, consomme and tomato sauce to the pan. Cover the pan with aluminum foil. Roast in the oven for about 2 and 1/2 hours at 325. I use a meat thermometer to tell me when it is done. We like it medium rare between 130 & 140. if you like it rare then roast it for less time or more for well done. Then thicken the stock for gravy. 

This is so incredibly delicious that Hubby wants me to cook it today. But he is just going to have to wait until Easter.

I will serve this with rice with the gravy on top. We will also have broccoli and a tossed salad. I am hoping to make a bunny cake for West. I used to make one when my kids were little. So if I can find the recipe, West will get one. 

I had a list when I grocery shopped this morning but I ended up buying more than what was on the list. I actually spent $143.97. When I see a good deal on meat that I didn’t have on my list, then I stock. Especially with beef prices going to rise quickly because of the floods. 

So I purchased 2 Porterhouse Steaks at $ 5.99 a lb.
They will get grilled soon. I also saw Eye Round Roasts on sale at $4.69 a lb. so I got 2 (This price has already risen.) Top’s also had boneless chicken breasts at $ 1.69 a lb. But my inventory tells me that I have over 75 lbs. of chicken in the freezer. So I skipped it.

The rest of my order was some more Lay’s chips for Hubby to have with dip while watching the game tonight. I also got some very expensive Delicious Apples because Hubby wanted them to add them into his coleslaw mix. We were down to 2 SF Jello and I eat this for a dessert or snack sometimes so I got a bunch. I got mushrooms to go with the steak and a cucumber for salads.

I had $ 479.54 left in my grocery budget before today’s shop. I now have $ 335.57. I will not be doing shopping for quite a while unless I see a great meat deal. 

I have never been one to know how much money I have in the grocery budget and go spend it all each month. I try to have money leftover to roll so that when I see meat deals like I did today, I can buy a few to put in my freezer and use at a later time. The one thing I hate is having to buy something at full price. So I try to avoid that although it has happened when I really need something for a recipe.

Today has been busy. Hubby spent some time with a pest control company representative deciding whether to hire them or not. They will set traps for the voles that are digging up our lawn, get rid of bee’s nests, and ants and any other pest that we get like spiders. I hate wolf spiders. The rep just came back and while he was gone we did some research. So we hired them for the season.

Because it snowed one more time since our last car wash, I used those coupons to get a free car wash again today. Now all of the salt should be off it until next winter. I also tanked the car up again getting $.60 off a gallon using supermarket points. 

Have you planned for Easter yet? Feel free to leave a comment and share your plans with all of us.

Every Day

My Top’s Grocery Haul

I did a Top’s grocery haul this week. I made a list over this past weekend using the sales flyer. I must have been hungry when I made it because I ended up crossing off half of the list before I went to the store. The items really weren’t needed.

Hubby wanted a snack for this coming weekend while he watches the championship basketball games. Top’s had a deal where you could get a bag of Lay’s chips for $ .99 with a Monopoly token that I had. I also picked him up some sour cream to make onion dip. I have plenty of dried onion soup mix in my basement stockpile from a $1.00 deal at Walmart months ago. I also picked him up 4 -12 packs of Diet Coke that are not pictured.

The stuffing mixes and gravy mixes are for when I eventually cook the big turkey. I can’t eat them so this will make it easier to just make a little for Hubby when I cook it and to make more with leftovers. Most of the cooked turkey I will be freezing for future meals. 

I have been taking the time to give myself a weekly manicure and ran out of polish remover. 

Strawberries, eggs, and the reduced fat cheddar cheese were all on sale. Now that I can add some fruit back in to my diet on Phase 2, you can’t have enough strawberries.

I wanted to make a big pot of homemade spaghetti sauce(most processed spaghetti sauce has sugar in it) this week for Hubby. Hence that is why I bought diced tomatoes. I had none left in my stockpile.

He has been so patient cooking his own meals so I decided to make him his favorite, spaghetti and meatballs for dinner tonight. I can have a couple of meatballs in the sauce and some veggies. No spaghetti for this lady. I have a question for those of you who eat healthy. What do you serve spaghetti sauce on? I hate whole wheat pasta. I would love to put it on spaghetti squash but I can’t find one in my stores. 

The bacon is for our family Sunday breakfast this coming weekend. 

I purchased some
sliced mozzarella for caprese salad and some shredded Mexican cheeses
for Hubby’s Tostito snacks that he makes. 

That was it. Even though Hubby is eating some snacks and a little bit different than me, he is still losing some weight which I am happy about. 

My total for this Top’s haul was $ 51.46. So now I have $479.54 left in my April grocery budget. 

Hubby and I are going to take it easy today and binge watch some movies. It is looking like this weekend may be warm, in the 50’s and 60’s, so perhaps we can get outside and enjoy it.

I hope you all have a great weekend. I will be back next week.  

Every Day

Frugal Things In The Past Few Weeks

We have done a few things frugally in the past few

Our SUV just turned 6 years old. It is in excellent condition and we want to keep it that way. We have less than 30,000 miles on it. We had quite a bit of snow this winter so it went to the car wash a lot to get the grime and salt off. Salt causes rust and we do not want any of that. The car wash costs $10. for the Works. Every time we get it washed, they give us a receipt. If you save 5 receipts, you get a free wash.
Hubby used 5 of them last week to get a free wash. And I have 5 more to use next time. Once it warms up here and we turn the outside water back on, we will wash our own car. 

We have been cooking all of our meals from scratch here at home using fresh ingredients that we purchase as cheaply as possible. We have been watching our portions and making sure that we get the nutrients that we need each day. Overeating wastes money and causes us to be unhealthy.

Our weight scale was old and Hubby was sure that it was inaccurate. I researched the best ones. They ranged anywhere in price from $15.00 up to $ 190. dollars. I bought the one for $19.99 which was highly rated. It is working well for us. I didn’t need an expensive one that worked with your computer and phone.

Last year we hemmed and hawed over renewing our B.J.’s membership. I didn’t but then they caught us with a year for $25. It was a mistake. I only did two shops all year and most of that time was used checking prices. With a year’s worth of careful research, I have determined that I can get the same prices and a lot of the time cheaper prices using Amazon, Walmart, Target, and meat sales at the regular supermarkets. A lot of prices were higher also and quantities are so big that our little family of 2 has trouble using such quantities. So when our membership was up the end of March, I did not renew it and will not be renewing it.

Our faucet cartridge died in our kitchen faucet. Hubby had a terrible time getting the screw out so that he could replace the cartridge but he kept at it and after an hour and a half, he was able to take it apart. Meanwhile, I went to the hardware stores in search of a new cartridge. Home Depot was the only one that had one in stock. The price at $20. was outrageous. But I had no choice but to buy it since we would have no water for a few days while I ordered one. And I was not about to go without water in the kitchen for an hour let alone a few days. While Hubby installed it, I found the same one at Amazon for $ 13.71. I ordered one to have a spare here the next time this happens. This guarantees that we will have one cheaper or that it will never give up the ghost again. Either way that works! 

I have almost emptied our last refill for our soap dispensers. Rather than buy more refills, we will refill with shampoo. I have a ton of shampoo that I got free that will work just as well.

I have been weeding out food from our basement storage pantry that we will never eat and donating it to the food pantry. I have been organizing it as I do this.

Since our winter electric and natural gas bills have been so high this winter, we have been really careful to turn off lights, use cold water washes, and use small appliances for cooking. Our last bill was $40.  less than the one before. Because this winter was so cold and snowy, I have not been able to determine if our back storm door is helping lower the bills. But we are hoping it is. If nothing else, it will be nice to have fresh air in the morning room and kitchen once the temps go up. 

I filled up the SUV with gasoline getting $.50 off a gallon using Top’s points. 

It is amazing how when you take the car in to get something done, they try to sell you something else. Hubby took the SUV in for a recall and the dealer told him he needed new brakes. He took the car in to get the snow tires taken off and the regular ones put back on. They told him that we needed a battery. Hubby has scheduled an appointment at our trusted garage who always fixes our SUV. Our car needs to be inspected in April. We will let them tell us if we need those things. If we need a battery, Hubby will buy one and install it himself saving us the labor. If we need brakes, my son said he will install them for us or if the garage’s price isn’t too costly we may get them done there. 

I have decided not to plant any vegetables again this year. Niagara Produce has such great prices on local veggies and fruits that it isn’t worth my time and effort. Plus I have no space to grow the amounts we will be using. 

That is about all that I can thing of right now. I will have to get back to keeping a list so that I don’t forget to tell you everything.

Please leave a comment and share with all of us what you have been doing frugally lately.  

Every Day

A Day In The Life

After getting up really early and getting that one cup of coffee and an egg for breakfast, I got ready to go to the dentist for an 8AM appointment. I just loved dealing with rush hour traffic especially when it had been snowing since Saturday night. Another expensive trip($330.) for cleaning and X rays but the good news is that I had no cavities.

Next it was a trip to the bank to get cash out for April’s groceries and eating out. After tracking spending on healthy food last month, I decided to get $500. for the month. My trial run in March was $800. which got us some items that will last more than a month or two plus let Hubby buy some goodies for himself. I had $ 77.90 left from March to roll into April. So after doing my withdrawal, I had a running balance of $577.90. I will be taking any monies that are left each month and just rolling it into the next month. That way I can build up a balance so that if I find a great meat sale, I can stock.

It will also allow me to build up some monies for a nice dinner out. We are cooking all of our meals right now but I am sure after a month or so, we will want to go out. I have looked at most of the menus for the restaurants we frequent and I believe it will be pretty easy for me to stay on South Beach while eating out. 

Easter has been on my mind since family is coming for dinner. I have a spiral sliced ham and a large turkey in my freezer that I purchased at rock bottom during the holidays in 2018. However, Hubby wants a leg of lamb. Lamb usually goes on sale closer to Easter. I will be keeping my eyes open for that perfect sale price. If it is really good, then I will buy one for Easter and a spare for the Fall.

But I did start getting things for an Easter basket for West. I had a $3.00 ECB and a $2.00 ECB that CVS just gave to me. So on the way home from the dentist I stopped and got some candy to start it. Free was terrific! I am doing something different for my granddaughter. 

Next I went to Niagara Produce to pick up some produce. We are going through a lot of produce these days. I also picked up some cold cuts and free au jus for Hubby. And I shopped at Walmart. Jelly beans are more for West’s basket and some for Hubby too. Hubby wanted wraps to go with his cold cuts. 

I started with $ 577.90 in my budget and after deducting the Walmart and Niagara Produce shop I have a balance of $531.00. I will most likely do a Top’s shop tomorrow since it is Senior Citizen Discount Day(6% off).

I am beat after all of the shopping and the dentist. So I will most likely settle down with a book and my lemon water for a while. Hubby needs to go outside and rake up the glass from our table on the patio. It broke during the wind storm a few weeks ago and he hasn’t gotten to it yet. He started one day but he said it was too cold. So we will be replacing it with a new patio dining set soon. 

The other surprise we got today was a notice from our town that our assessment on the house went up $33,000. for 2019. They nailed everyone in here most likely because the houses were selling the end of last year for 28-40% more than they had been. I expect we will get hit again next year because they are extending our neighborhood behind us. So lots of new homes will be for sale. They started selling them about two weeks ago and have sold 6 so far. I will be happy to have a large home behind us to break up the wind. 

Now that I am losing so much weight, I was afraid I would lose my wedding ring. I almost lost it last weekend. So I stopped and got a ring guard. That will work until I am down to the weight I want to be and can get it made smaller. 

Tonight I will be making a South Beach recipe for gingered chicken and steaming some asparagus. I will make some rice in the rice cooker if Hubby wants some.   

I hope you are having a great day! Have you gotten any great deals lately? Please feel free to tell us all about them in comments.