Every Friday, here at Renaissance, I post about my frugal endeavors and financial inspiration to keep my head in the game. As a single income family, I am constantly trying to stretch, save and strategically spend our pennies to make this household not only work, but thrive. But sometimes I just want to give up and go buy a bunch of stuff. So I started Finances on Friday, a way to re-inspire myself and push myself to keep on keeping on. Join me?
* Mended: a hat, three skirts, six dresses, three shirts, four sheets and two pairs of holey jeans that I turned into shorts
* Bought 40 pounds of fresh half-chickens for $20.00 from a small Mennonite store nearby (this, I admit, puts a damper in the EMPTYING of a freezer but .50 a pound for fresh chicken was a deal I couldn't pass up!)
* bought a Japanese Anemone and some forget-me-nots from a church plant sale for $2.00 each
* bought two rhubarb plants this year and spent too much money on them. I had checked several places and only two (out of six!) places had them- for $7.50 a piece at BOTH places. I checked (and begged) on Craigslist but no rhubarb to be gotten there either. So I sprung and bought two plants. I know it was expensive but I figure the hearty and thriving plants will last me forever...as opposed to the crowns I planted last year that never came up. $15 out of pocket (which stinks) but hopefully a lifetime of rhubarb. I will just think about the fact that I could have wasted those $15.00 in many other ways that wouldn't reward me year after year. (Do you see how I justify myself all the time?)
* Planted: rhubarb, swiss chard and last of brussel sprouts.
* Noticed a bunch of parsnips popping up in the garden from last year! That was a pleasant surprise!
* paid $200 extra toward principal of house (every extra payment toward the principal of the mortgage gets us one step closer to getting this house paid off with the least amount of interest paid. Even the small drops in the proverbial bucket matter....or so I tell myself every month when I scrape a measley amount of extra dollars together.)
* picked bouquets of lilacs for the house
* made homemade yogurt (4 1/2 qts)
* spent hours out in the Granary, sorting and cleaning. Dropped off 9 bags of stuff for donation and three bags of garbage. Set aside only the best things for yard sale. What a huge difference so far! Super excited!
* a neighbor gave me some extra rhubarb stalks (harvested) and while I was complaining about the price I paid for rhubarb---they said "Oh- we have some growing in our woods! Come on over Friday and dig it up if you wish!" So. YAY for free rhubarb plants! BOO for buying rhubarb earlier in the week (justification or not).
* worked on handmade baby gift
* hung laundry on line to dry
* washed a TON of crummy ziploc bags which had been shoved in a nook and forgotten about.
* wrote three letters
Week 3 of the Use-It-Up Challenge~ in which I try and clear out a freezer and canning cupboard in preparation for an (Lord willing) abundant harvest!Lunches, unless otherwise stated, take the form of the very uncreative, uninteresting sandwich. Or leftovers. And I should mention the children have a snack between lunch and supper since we eat so late. Snacks are sundry little bits of things. As usual~ if it is blue it is from the freezer and red is from the canning cupboard.)
breakfast: fried eggs, sautéed onions, toast
supper: Mexican chicken, cheddar and onion wraps; pesto parmesan potatoes; peaches, steamed vegetables
supper: grilled sirloin steak, oven roasted potatoes, broccoli with cheddar cheese sauce, applesauce
breakfast: scrambled eggs, cheese, raisin toast, grape juice
lunch: leftover soups from freezer mixed together (venison stew and minestrone soup) and rolls
supper: pepper and onion stir fry (kielbasa, jalapeno peppers, pineapple zucchini) over brown rice, pears, peanut butter fudge (leftover from Christmas)
breakfast: eggs, toast, cheese and sausage
dinner: barbecued chicken drumsticks on the grill, mixed vegetables and couscous, vanilla pudding with huckleberry sauce, pickles
breakfast: lemony blueberry muffins (shredded zucchini, huckleberries), cottage cheese
dinner: quiche, pickles. (beet greens, zucchini, and leftover couscous veggies from last topped with a single puff pastry I found WAAAY in the back of the freezer. Since I don't buy puff pastry (like...ever) I have no idea how old that sucker was. But it made a good crust for the quiche!). Molasses cookies (from frozen dough~ enough for eight cookies. Weird. WHY would I have frozen enough dough for eight cookies?!?)
breakfast: homemade maple vanilla yogurt and peanut butter granola, fresh strawberries
dinner: broccoli and cheddar soup, herbed baking powder biscuits (broccoli, shredded zucchini, cabbage broth)
breakfast: eggs and Naughty Rhubarb Scones (though there is nothing naughty about them. I used yogurt instead of cream because that is what I had on hand)
lunch: my sister is coming over so I am making Beef Burritos with corn and black bean relish and salsa over brown rice (cilantro, corn, beef, salsa)
dinner: Pizza and Carrot Sticks night! I am thinking Garlic Pesto Chicken and Pepperoni with onions.
It's funny~ ever since I have been writing out our menu I have had to fight the urge to photograph every meal. I think it is because 'barbecued chicken" doesn't adequately convey the 45 minutes of basting that had to be done first. Squishing 45 minutes of effort into two words is a bit depressing. And of course there is the fact that, though in reality it was delicious to eat AND to look at, "leftover soups mixed together" is less than appealing to read.
Do you have anything financial/inspiring to share this week?
As always~ PLEASE link to your SPECIFIC blog post, not your entire blog. It could be ways you saved or stretched or strategically spent those pennies...or, if you prefer not to be so personal, even inspiration you found online, articles or quotes... but please link to a post about SOMETHING financial! Lastly, please link back to my blog so maybe others would like to share!