Every Day

Small Things We Did Yesterday to Save Some Money and an Apology

First I want to apologize to all of you who wrote such nice comments on the post about Hubby’s heart attack. I am sorry that I didn’t get a chance to respond to them until this morning. I am trying to get caught up and have now responded to each and every one of you. Your prayers are greatly appreciated and so is your kindness. Hubby is taking his medicines and taking it easy like he was told to. He sees our cardiologist next week so we will see if he approves of the changes in the medicines that were made by the hospital doctors. I am very interested to see what he has to say about his heart attack. Thanks again to all of you!

Hubby had a low carb wrap with ham, provolone cheese, and lettuce for brunch. I was too busy to eat.

I had an appointment at Supercuts to get my hair cut. The stylist did a good job. I like the cut she gave me. With tip it cost me just $25. I noticed that my roots are really starting to come in. The stylist says it looks like my hair will be white with a sprinkling of gray. Hubby thinks it will make me look 20 years older and that I will hate it. I think he is right. So I am on the hunt for a coupon for hair color and I will do it myself. Yesterday Cindi told me that they have a senior discount. I don’t know if the stylist automatically gave me that or if I have to ask for it. I will ask next time. Thank you so much Cindi for that tip.

After my appointment, I stopped at Aldi’s to get the 5 lb. bag of chicken legs they had on sale for $ .89 a lb. They had none left. I wasn’t too disappointed since I have some in the freezer along with lots of other cuts of chicken.

I have 2 medical statements that came in the mail last week one of which was incorrect and didn’t show my cash co-pay that I made when I was in the office of $25. Fortunately, I always get receipts and keep them. I got that straightened out with the billing office yesterday. Medical bills are high enough without paying what you don’t owe.

The second was a medical statement from my insurance company that looked like a denial of claim that I would have to appeal for my ER hospital visit in July. I called them because the explanation of why they denied it was not there. I was told “Oh that is just a standard letter we send out when we need more info from the hospital”. It would have been nice if they had explained that and told me why instead of telling me they weren’t paying it. The representative said updates will be coming and I have no responsibility for any of that bill at the moment. I hate dealing with insurance companies on bills.

I texted my neighbor who is a good friend of ours to tell her about Hubby. I asked her if she or her Hubby knew anyone who could snowplow our driveway this winter. She told me she would tell her Hubby because he might know someone. He yelled over to me yesterday when I was leaving the house to go to the hair salon. He said he had a friend who said he would do it. We talked with him last night. He will do it from first snow through the last snow. His flat rate for the winter was very reasonable also. That is a huge load lifted off of my mind! My son who lives in the Adirondacks and is coming for Thanksgiving offered to teach me how to use the snow blower and tune it up for us for the winter just in case. I am going to take him up on that offer even if I only need it to do the sidewalk that leads to our porch. I used to snow blow once in a while when the kids were growing up but I need a refresher course.

We ate the leftover chicken enchilada casserole from the night before along with some string beans I cooked up from fresh. Waste not, want not!

Hubby and I continued last night to catch up on our shows on DVR. So that was our entertainment for the evening.

Did any of you save any money yesterday?

Every Day

Cutting Costs

These are the things we did yesterday to cut our costs.

I have been paying for Netflix for a long time as a gift for my granddaughter. When she was here visiting recently she told me that she and her mom don’t watch it anymore. So we kept it these past couple of weeks to watch some things we were interested in. But it really does not have much that appeals to the two of us. Yesterday, I cancelled it. That will save us $ 16.73 a month or $ 200.76 a year. We have free Paramount+ and free Peacock to watch.

Remember a few weeks back I applied for the energy rebate of $50. for getting our furnace tune up? That $50. check from our utility company came yesterday. So the tune up actually cost us $19. out of pocket. That was money well spent with the cold winters we have here.

I cooked breakfast in the electric fry pan. I did egg omelets with sauteed onions and red peppers and some cheddar cheese and a piece of sausage for each of us.

As usual lights are kept off during the daytime. We only use them when it is dark out. We also follow the sun around the house and open and close curtains to let the sun in to help warm the house.

It was 79 degrees here yesterday so we opened the windows to cool the house and get some fresh air. I didn’t need to close everything back up until 10pm. It went down to 47 during the night.

We no longer are buying alcohol. Hubby can no longer have it and it really isn’t good for me either. So we will use up the beer and liquor in the house when we have company.

We had two large flowering bushes outside that needed to get cut back for the winter. Hubby does that every year, not our regular crew that trims and weeds. Hubby doesn’t let them touch these or the roses. We went out and Hubby sat and cut them down almost to the ground. I bagged them and carried them to the garbage area in the garage. They will get put out to the curb tomorrow night. Hubby can’t carry anything that heavy yet. By Hubby taking care of these and the roses it lowers the bill that we pay to the landscape company who maintains everything else at our home.

I took my navy shower which saves on our natural gas and water bills.

For dinner, I made It was delicious. I baked it in our toaster oven which uses much less power than my big natural gas oven. I substituted low carb tortillas instead of the deli chicken, triple cheddar cheese instead of the Mexican cheese and I did not use the blue cheese. I go with what I have in our home. This meal will feed us again tonight and perhaps for a brunch.

I washed all of the sheets on all three beds in the house in one load to get ready for Thanksgiving company. Ours which I wash once a week needed to be changed so I decided I might as well throw in the others and those beds will be ready ahead of time. They were done in cold water with our homemade laundry detergent.

For entertainment, we spent a couple of hours catching up on our favorite shows that Hubby DVR’s every week.

We are still looking for a snowplow service to no avail. We have called at least 10 companies that advertise snow plowing but no one has called us back. I am starting to think that people hired early and that they have all the clients they can handle. Back up plan will have to be me. I can’t take the chance of an ambulance being called for Hubby and not being able to get him because of the snow. I have to go out today to Aldi’s so I am going to stop at the town hall today and see if they know of anyone. All of this has me thinking about making some big changes in our life next year.

Did you do anything that you could share yesterday to save some money?

Every Day

Cutting Costs: Some Large & Some Small

These are the things I did yesterday to cut our costs.

You all know that my expensive hair salon has been something I have needed to take off my list for a long time. Hubby has always told me to keep going there because I like the hairdresser. However, her prices have gone up and I can no longer justify paying almost $150. every 4-6 weeks for haircuts, root touch ups, and highlights. So I cancelled my next appointment. I will be making an appointment at Supercuts for a haircut which I desperately need. I don’t know what they charge but I am sure it is way less for a haircut than I have been paying. I will also be looking for a coupon to defray that cost. I will be letting my gray or white hair grow in over the winter. I have no idea what color it is. At my age, I don’t care about getting it colored anymore. As long as it is clean, neat, and cut, that is all I will concern myself with. If for some reason my natural color turns out to be awful, I will color it myself. A box of hair color purchased with a coupon will be so much cheaper than what I am paying now.

I used the electric fry pan(cheaper than heating up the gas stove) to make Hubby some Keto blueberry pancakes for breakfast. I actually made a whole bunch to freeze for future meals when he is craving them.

The temperature outside has been in the 70’s and will be 69 today so the heat only seems to come on overnight when it is colder. That will save us some money. We just got our natural gas and electric bill for the month ending October 21. We only used 390 kwh instead of the 451 kwh we used same period last year. I have really been watching our usage and cutting back. We did use 1 therm more of natural gas than last year but it has been colder. Our bill last year was $ 115. This year’s bill was $ 144. so $ 29. more. It would have been so much higher if I hadn’t been cutting back on the electric.

I washed a very large load of wash with cold water and rinsed in cold water. About 1/2 of the load, I hung to dry. The rest was dried in the dryer using my dryer balls to save on how long it needed to run to dry. I used my homemade powered laundry detergent in the wash.

Hubby had been procrastinating on taking the 6 hour course for NYS online that saves us 10% off our car insurance. You take the course and you get 10% off each year for 3 years. The course saves us on average $119. per year. The course only costs us $ 25. So we end up saving $332. Today he is sitting at his computer and taking it. It needed to be taken by October 31st. So that is now done.

Since Hubby was taking the course and could reach me on our cellphone if he needed me, I took a quick trip to Top’s. I picked up 4 Two Good yogurts, a package of romaine lettuce, some all natural deli sliced turkey and roast beef to put on salads, 1 G Hughes salad dressing, 4 cream cheeses, 1 cheddar cheese block on sale and 1 pkg. of mozzarella sticks for a chicken recipe, a rotisserie chicken, 2 Skinny Pop, 2 on sale sour creams, 2 Rao’s spaghetti sauces and a pill splitter. The rotisserie chicken was on sale so it cost me less than buying the whole chicken and roasting it myself. I will put the skin and carcass in the freezer until I get a second carcass and then I will make bone broth. Total cost for all was $ 77.64. Just outrageous! But they were all things we needed.

Dinner was easy. I had already cooked Jalapeno Cheddar Sausages leftover from last night. They just needed to be reheated in the microwave. I served them with healthy homemade coleslaw that we had had the night before. I always try to cook for 2 meals at a time to save time and energy.

I have many, many, paper plates right now. So I have been using them when I can to save on running the dishwasher as often as I have been.

Our entertainment for the evening was Hubby watched Monday night football and I called and chatted with my sister for an hour.

Did you do anything to save money yesterday? Please share with us in the comments so we can learn from you.

Every Day

Learning to live on 50% of Your Current Income

So many people have had their income cut for different reasons:

Loss of job (living on savings or unemployment, etc.)

Pension being cut in half or taken away

Retirement income being used up

Inflation cutting into the income you do have with rising food prices, gasoline, insurances, utility costs, etc. ( Yes! Inflation basically gives you a pay cut.)

Some of you purchased homes just before all of this inflation hit and at top dollar. Now you are having trouble making ends meet.

So many people are having to adjust their budgets right now and I believe that so many more will be losing their jobs in 2023. We are already seeing many companies lay thousands of people off.

To be totally honest, I do not see an end of this in sight for the next couple of years.

Every one is affected by at least one or more of the things that I listed. So we all have to cut expenses where we can and that is going to be my mission from now through next year and beyond if need be.

We will strive to live on just 50% of our income so that is going to take some major cost cutting. Will that be easy? Not at all. Will we be able to? I don’t know but we will be trying our hardest.

I know so may of you will not be able to join us because you are using every penny you have to just survive. However everyone can cut costs even if it is only a little bit. I have always said every little bit helps. So all the ways that I will be showing you how we are cutting costs should help in some way.

We are facing different and more expensive food costs because of the diet that Hubby has to follow. I have been making 99% of his meals from scratch since he came home from the hospital. Everything that he can’t eat has been taken out of our kitchen by donating it or disposing of it (open jars etc. in the refrigerator). This way he knows that he can eat anything that is in our kitchen and that he won’t be eating the wrong things.

We also are facing another expense besides some of the hospital and doctor bills and new drug costs. I am trying to find a snowplow driver for this winter. Please wish me luck because winter will be here soon and snowplow drivers are hard to find.

The best time for me to post on here is while Hubby is sleeping. He sleeps longer in the morning than I do usually. He is sleeping right now, hence the post. The rest of the day is taken up with our needs. So look for posts in the morning. I will try my very best to document every little or big things that we are doing.

I will start tomorrow if he sleeps in.

Every Day

I’m Still Here

Just wanted to let you know that I am still here but just not posting at the moment. My Hubby had a heart attack last Monday. I was finally able to bring him home from the hospital this afternoon.

So I will be a focusing my attention on him the next week or two and the changes we have to make around here. Then hopefully I will be back regularly.

Every Day

I Have To Ask Why?

I don’t normally publish anything like this but I think everyone should see this

I looked at the news at 4am when I got up this morning and this is what shocked me. I have to ask why would they do this and on our soil? And why put the information out there so close to the midterm elections?

Perhaps now some of the conspiracy theories out there don’t look as outrageous.

Every Day

Aldi’s Grocery Shopping Haul Yesterday

Besides the turkey that I purchased for Thanksgiving, I bought a few other items that we needed.

Almost every time I go grocery shopping, I pick up a pound of butter. In past years, I have always purchased 30-35 pounds of butter to last us a year or so at a great sale price at Aldi. I am not counting on that happening this year and I am getting low on it. The butter was $ 3.79. The ones I purchased in November of 2021 I think were $ 1.97? So butter has really gone up.

I always like to have fresh mushrooms in the house because we usually have steak or hamburgers once a week. These were $ 1.29.

My last purchase was 7 blocks of different cheeses. I had run out of them. We shred the mozzarella for our homemade pizza. I have the grater attachment for my Kitchen Aid mixer and it does a beautiful job. The cheddar we slice for snacks. The others we either slice or shred depending on what recipe we are using them for. They were all $ 1.99 each which is the cheapest price in my area.

So I spent $ 45.98 including the cost of the turkey at $ 26.97. These will be my only food purchases this week.

To save on gasoline, I also stopped at the drugstore for a prescription. We are staying at home most of the time and getting a lot more done here.

We started our day off today by making homemade “egg McMuffins”. Ours taste much better, have more bacon and egg and cost less than 1/2 the price at McDonalds. Plus I didn’t have to waste gas and time to go get them.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Every Day

My Thanksgiving Purchase Today

Knowing that my son and some of his friends are coming to spend Thanksgiving with us, I have been on the hunt for a larger turkey.

While I was shopping at Aldi’s today, I noticed that the freezer case where they normally have turkeys this time of year was about 1/2 full of them. Most of the turkeys were 9-12 lbs. I did not want one that small.

I searched through every turkey and there were only three 16+ lb. ones. I looked at the expiration dates because I was concerned that they might have been leftovers in their warehouse from last year. The big ones all had an expiration date of 04/2024. That told me that those were this year’s turkeys.

Last year, I paid $ 1.19 a lb for this same turkey brand. Today they were $1.59 a lb. Knowing that there is a shortage of turkeys this year, I bought one that was 16.96 lbs. while I could get it. It cost me $ 26.97.

Since chicken here is $3.49 a lb., I figured this turkey was a good deal. If they go on sale in November and they have any left, I may get another to cook up and use the meat over the winter in place of chicken. The bones, skin, and bits of turkey will give me a lot of turkey bone broth that I will can too.

So if you need a larger turkey for Thanksgiving, check your Aldi’s. I have been watching all of the stores and so far, Aldi’s is the first one to have them. Top’s had Jennie -O turkey breasts but that is it.

I did not mind paying the price for this one because it gave me peace of mind that I had my holiday turkey.

Months ago, I purchased a few cranberry sauces while the price was still reasonable. I have purchased a few lbs. of butter when I have a store coupon for them and they are on sale. I also purchased the sausage to make my stuffing. I don’t have the stuffing cubes yet but they should be coming out soon. When broccoli and corn were on sale I picked those up also. I use turkey broth in place of water in my stuffing so I have that on the shelf too. I make homemade gravy from the turkey drippings. I have plenty of potatoes and all of the ingredients to make pie crusts and pumpkin and apples for pies.

I am still on the hunt for a good price on whipped topping for the pies. I will also need ice cream and a couple of bottles of wine.

I am so thankful that I have these things and that I could afford them.

If you are doing Thanksgiving dinner this year, I think you should get the turkey earlier rather than later. I believe they will run out of turkeys well before the holiday.

Have any of you purchased your holiday goods yet?

Every Day

These Last Two Days

I have been busy organizing every room nook and cranny in the house. I have thrown out about 4 bags of junk.You know the things that you hang onto just in case. Well just in case is leaving the house! I still have the guest bathroom and all of the basement to do. I hope to get the bathroom done this week and then the basement will take a few weeks. I am going to go open and look at everything in storage containers down there and if we don’t need it, it goes. Then I will organize and label everything.

We had my birthday celebration one day this week. Hubby always asks me what I want on my birthday. If I want to go out, we go out. If I want to stay home, I pick the meal. I wanted to stay home. The food is always better. So we had steak that Hubby grilled outside. We added cheese mashed potatoes and tomatoes from our garden along with some sliced cucumbers. It was yummy!

Hubby looked for a recipe for Peanut Butter Pie which is my very favorite dessert. He made one and the whole pie is pictured above and the piece I ate is here:

This was the best peanut butter pie that I have ever eaten. I have ordered this pie in many restaurants over the years but I have to say this was the best one. We will be enjoying the rest this week for many meals.

Here is the recipe:

Groceries lately have been pared down to necessities at the cheapest price or on sale only items. Groceries have just gotten way too expensive and they will be going up even more very soon.There are many things that I will not buy because I deem them not worth the price. I have to pick up Hubby’s prescription one day so I might stop on the way home. Gasoline prices are too high to go running out all the time.

Our heat is still on and will probably stay on for the winter. It was 70 here today but now it is really going to turn cold. We are keeping the heat at 68-69 during the day and 64 at night.

We have two blankets on our bed instead of using the electric blanket. We have a third blanket if we need it. I am going to be ordering extra blankets for the guest room beds so any company we have will not freeze. There are heavy comforters on those beds also.

I am off to do some more organizing. I hope you all have a good day.

Every Day

Why I Have Been Missing in Action For Most of The Summer

I thought long and hard about writing this post. Should I or should I not? But even if you don’t read it, I will feel better knowing that I have told the people who have been my readers for years what has been going on in my life.

I am sure that some of you thought I might be ending this blog. Or perhaps, you thought that because I am getting older that I just couldn’t do it anymore. Wrong on both accounts. Even though I will be “very old” this week, my brain is still functioning! I thank the Lord for that!

It all started a few weeks before the 4th of July. I had not been feeling well. After watching the neighborhood fireworks, I went to bed that night about 11PM. About 3AM, I woke up with horrible chest pain and could hardly breathe. I woke Hubby up and he called an ambulance. They took me to the local hospital ER pretty quickly. After hours of being there and waiting for tests to be done, I finally was taken for a CT scan. Getting the results took hours.

The nurse practitioner in charge of me finally came in and told me that it wasn’t heart but that she and the doctors determined that I had pulmonary fibrosis which was showing on the CT scan. That diagnosis hit me like a ton of bricks! I was well aware of that disease because my mother died from it. It was a slow agonizing death that took over 6 years. There is no cure.

Hubby and I were both in shock on the ride home after they released me. They told me that I needed to get a good pulmonary doctor and to follow up with my primary doctor.

When I got home, I tried to pull myself together so that I could call my sons and my sister and let them know. Of course I fell apart after I told them. They all knew what this disease is and that it is terminal.

I called my primary doctor the next morning and was given an appointment for the next day. Meanwhile they gathered all of the records from the hospital and the CT report. Hubby and I went and saw my doctor and he listened to everything that had happened.

He told us that he was more concerned about 3 heart blockages on my CT scan than the pulmonary fibrosis diagnosis at that moment. I said they never told me about that in the ER. He also told me that I have a nodule on my thyroid.

He said we needed to take one thing at a time starting with the heart. He said I needed to go to my cardiologist. I told him that he had retired 6 weeks before all of this. I did not have an appointment with the new doctor until November. He told me to call the cardiologist when I got home and explain about the ER visit and what the CT scan showed and that I needed to see the Dr. asap. He told me if they wouldn’t fit me in that I was to call him and he would find me a cardiologist who would see me quickly.

To make a long story shorter, I called and they couldn’t fit me in until October. This was in July. UGH! So I called my primary and he got me a new cardiologist who would see me the next business day.

Hubby took me to the new cardiologist, who I love, and he set up a stress test and ECHO test for two days later. I had those done and they told me that I should hear from the doctor by noon the next day. That if I didn’t, most likely there was no major problem. But if I wanted the results, I could call his office after 1 o’clock that day and his nurse would give me the results. The nurse told me that my heart was very strong and that the blocked arteries were non obstructive. In other words the blood finds other pathways in other arteries. I followed up with the cardiologist the next week. He told me basically the same thing but that they had determined that I have ” a sticky valve”. What that means is one of the valves is slow opening and closing. He said he didn’t want to see me for two years and at that time I would have another stress test and ECHO test. Meantime, he put me on what he said was a better cholesterol drug which made my feet and legs swell up. I evidently was allergic to it. We have gone back to the drug that I have been on for years for now. So if the doctor isn’t worried about my heart then I didn’t need to be either.

Next my primary set up an appointment with the pulmonary doctor who he said he would go to for himself or his family if he or they had my problem. I waited about 3 weeks for that appointment. All the pulmonary doctor had was the report from the hospital describing the CT scan and the pulmonary fibrosis. He told me he was going to try to get the actual CT scan from them. He also told me that he wanted to run two tests on my lungs. The office set me up for those the end of September. I had those tests done and went to see the doctor to get the results the next day. I had waited so long but this one day in between doing the tests and getting the results seemed to go so slowly. I was a nervous wreck to put it bluntly!

I went to see him and came home with very good news. He said my breathing tests were pretty good. He said my asthma which I have had for 45 years needed better treatment than I had had over the years. He put me on a new drug which he said would help. Let me tell you, that drug is a miracle. I haven’t felt this good in years. I have never been a good sleeper at night. I usually wake up in the middle of the night and get up for my day very early. Since I have been on this drug, I am now sleeping 7-9 hours a night and getting up usually around 7AM. I haven’t felt this rested in years.

Then he went on to tell me the best news! He said he got the actual CT scan and he does not believe that I have pulmonary fibrosis. He said between the CT scan, chest X ray that was done at the hospital, and the breathing tests, he is 98% sure that I do not have it. He said there is a small amount of scarring in one lung but that could be caused over the years by pneumonia or even bronchitis. They have set me up for another appointment for breathing tests in December to see what difference this new drug makes on these new tests.

I have not gone to a thyroid doctor yet but will soon. That seemed to be the least of my problems.

But anyhow, my mind and time have been elsewhere. I have been very upset during these months and tried to keep up with the blog but just wasn’t motivated to do it.

We had a lot of visits from family during the month of September and that helped by just enjoying everyone even though I was very tired and my mind was kind of on my health. Them visiting helped me tremendously.

After company left, I needed to catch up on some work in the house that had been neglected. I am still working on that a little at a time now but with my newly found sleep and energy it shouldn’t be long before that is done. And I guess I need to do my Christmas shopping. At least everyone seems to be saying do it now.

I am also planning for Thanksgiving. My son who lives across the state will be coming this year along with a friend or two. So I am praying that we will be able to find a suitable turkey at a decent price.

I didn’t want you to think that I was disinterested in the blog anymore and that is why I decided to tell you. I also want you all to realize that none of us know when our last day will be so spend as much time as you can loving your family and friends. That is what is important in life! Nothing else compares.

I also would be remiss if I didn’t call out Chris. Chris, who some of you may know from her great comments, has been a true online friend for years. I have never met her but she is a genuine, loving and caring individual. It comes across in her comments and her e-mails to me.

She was the only one who comes here who I told what I was going on these past months. She has been praying for me for months. She checked in with me almost every week. Chris, your prayers and caring was so important to me and I thank you for that! You are the best friend anyone could have.

Soon I will be back blogging like I used to. Just let me get caught up a little.