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Showing posts from November, 2012

What would you do if you won the lottery?

This is the question I am pondering today. Truth is, I have no idea what I would do if I won the lottery. I know things in my life would change drastically and hopefully for the better. I do admit I would love to know what life is like when one does not have to worry about money!


With the Powerball being at an estimated $550,000,000 with a cash payout of $360,000,000, I am baffled at that amount of money. When we figured the cash payout today at work with sticking the money somewhere that make you interest, at 2% interest, you would make $7,000,000 at year. Wrap your mind around that. 

With that amount of money that could potentially land in your lap, some questions beg answers. Or at least pondering:

1. Would you continue to work?
2. Who and what would you pay off first?
3. Would you pay off your family's (parents, siblings, grandparents) debts?
4. Would you help out your friends with their debts?
5. Would you give your money away and to whom?
6. Would you continue your frugal …

Have we lost the ability to take care of ourselves?

From watching the natural disasters that have happened in the last few years, one has to ask that question: have we lost the ability to take care of ourselves?

I am starting to think we as a collective group of people have lost that ability. That, or we have lost the common sense, the ability to assess the situation. and the ability to make the good decisions to take care of ourselves. We have become so dependent on others and government agencies to bail us out of bad situations that we no longer feel the need to do so ourselves.

I understand that things can happen that are completely out of one's control. Sometimes, everything we have or used to prep with is gone in an instant. Most of the time, though, you can anticipate, prevent, and protect yourself, your family, and your things.

Want to know the one thing that irritates me the most after a natural disaster? People who were affected by the natural disaster acting helpless on camera. I hear things like:

"We have no food, n…

Monday Frugal Update and Whatnot

Today's post might take a different direction today. This week has been a good week for money at our house with an extra little bit showing up to help with some extra bills and holiday shopping. Did I spend money recklessly? No. Did I think carefully about all my purchases? Yep.

I had a huge list of things to buy that were on sale Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I have been looking at ads for today also. I did not buy even a quarter of the things I had listed. I have a tactic I like to use when big sales come up or an opportunity for a big shopping trip.

I write down everything on sale and everything I would like to buy. Everything. I don't care what those items might be, but I write them down. Then I start to think about what I have written down. Is the price for those items really that good? Is the sale worth it? I categorize with the needs, wants, or just to have its.

The amazing thing with the list is that the list drastically starts to change. And will continue to…

Thanksgiving Leftovers - 3 Ways!

One of the greatest food holidays is done and gone. I am a little sad myself as I love Thanksgiving and all the wonderful food that I get to eat on that day! With any meal like that though comes....

LEFTOVERS!
Yeah!

I eat leftovers all the time so I have become a big fan of leftovers. With Thanksgiving leftovers comes three great dishes that I am about to share with you today. The first dish is Hot Turkey Sandwiches (best thing ever!), following that will be Turkey Stuffing Casserole, and finishing will be Barbecue Turkey Pizza!


Hot Turkey Sandwiches

These open-faced sandwiches are so easy and available at a lot of diners, but I am amazed at the amount of people who have never heard of them much less ate one! If you have not, let me please enlighten you!

You will need: 
Sliced bread of choice
Sliced or shredded turkey (actually almost any meat will do!)
Mashed potatoes
Gravy
Stuffing (optional)
**I don't list quantities because I believe these are a matter of preference. 

1. Heat u…

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving from us to you! 
In the picture above, you can see what I am most thankful for! 
Have a great day, Eat Well, and Thanks for Reading!

Dehydrating Onions

Let me help you save some money and make you think you are a frugal genius! I used to be one of those that bought dried chopped onions in the grocery stores paying anywhere from $.99 to $3.99 for a container of that stuff. Then I got my mom's old dehydrator. I played around with the dehydrator and put it away not realizing its invaluable contribution to our household. Silly, silly me. 
One day I ran out of dried chopped onion which I use frequently, especially when I need to hide the onion used in the dish from my kids. I knew they would know I used real, un-dried onion and practically refuse to eat the delicious casserole I had prepared. I need a solution. 
Voila! Dry my own onions! 
Whoa. 
This is easy, peasy! First of all, you want to chop up an onion to the size pieces that work for you. I leave a few bigger pieces, but I like small pieces. Remember the pieces will shrink!
 (Sorry about the scuzzy cutting board. I did remedy that problem already!)
 Then, depending on…

Monday Frugality Update and Whatnot...

...is once again published on Tuesday. Monday was kind of chaotic with very little sit down time. Work was crazy and the two younger kids needed to be Algona by 6:15 for the Live Greeting Card Windows that are done every year. They are all really neat to see!

The last two weeks have been focused on trying to stick to the spending less freeze. This is really a lot harder than it looks to do. I made a trip to Menards last weekend to get things we needed around the house like light bulbs, a drain snake to get hair out of the drains (ick!), Damp-rid for the basement, dishwasher detergent because the homemade stuff is not working with this dishwasher, windshield wiper fluid that can handle the cold, and a few odds and ends to fix some minor things around the house. I also made a trip to Dollar General for a few toiletries that we ran out of and could not make ourselves.

In my excitement last Monday because it was my birthday, I didn't tell you all what I got for my birthday! Both thin…

Thy Hand Hath Provided: Buy the Cookbook

I want to tell you all about a great cookbook that is available for sale today and thereafter. I won't hesitate to say that I love her recipes on her blog and love her wisdom in canning, cooking, and other things in life. The fact that she put her recipes in a cookbook - in one spiral bound cookbook - is just wonderful!

Please check out her cookbook and buy one too! I have this down on my Christmas wishlist and I can not wait to receive it! 

Thy Hand Hath Provided: Buy the Cookbook: Scroll down to read more about it... Thy Hand Hath Provided Cookbook - $15.99 1 Cookbook ($3.50 shipping) $19.49 USD 2 Cookbo...

Thank for looking! Have a great day!

How to Can Your Own Potatoes

What you see below was my total crop of potatoes from the garden this year. I planted three rows of 15 plants each and this was it. I might have to set a better watering system next year. Dang heat. 


I knew I wanted to can potatoes again this year. I love the convenience of opening up a jar, draining it, and dumping the potatoes into a frying pan. Almost instant fried potatoes! You don't need garden potatoes to do this, by the way. A bag of potatoes from the supermarket will work too. This is also a canning project that can be done any time of the year.
How To Can Potatoes:
1. Wash the potatoes thoroughly. Set a pot of water to boiling. Get your pressure canner ready to go and set to boiling. Place quart-size jars into hot water or a warm oven to get them hot. Set a small pan of water to simmer for the lids.

2. Peel the potatoes if you would like. (I don't, but that is a personal preference.) Cut the potatoes into similar size pieces that you can get into the jar. I do roughly one…

Another year older...

Today is my 36th birthday! Yeah! For those who are saying, "why advertise your age?", you will find out soon enough. In honor of my 36th birthday, I will attempt an list of 36 things about me and observations I would like to make.

1. I am not ashamed of my age or fear growing a year older. I have always looked forward to aging because my life has gotten better every year older I have become!

2. I have four beautiful children. I am still amazed that they do not really look like each other, have four very distinctly different personalities, and were wonderfully and fearfully made. I love them so much!

3. I am in constant awe of my wonderfully amazing children.

4. If someone would have told me at 17 that I would have four kids, much less one, I would have laughed. A lot.

5. I had my oldest daughter at 18, my second daughter at 19, my third daughter at 24, and my son at 27.

6. I am a total and complete bookworm. I would read all the time if given the opportunity.

7. Between my K…

What Meats Will Meet Your Needs?

In setting up your food storage, a tough area to address is meat. When I started this series, I stopped because I wasn't certain how to address this myself along with the fact that I had changed my mind a few times about how I was going to address this area.

The best way to address the issue of meat in your food storage is to understand that you will need a few different plans. You have heard of others saying back-ups to back-ups to back-ups? In this case, they are absolutely right.

I know others who will say that you do not necessarily need to have meat in your food storage plan and that you will need to replace meat with other healthy proteins or go meatless. While I do encourage a few meatless meals a week, I do not believe meat is totally replaceable in the food storage plan. Meat is too valuable of a resource of necessary protein to give up eating altogether.

My first plan for meats to keep my chest freezer full of them. In fact, as of this being written, I have very little room…

What Can I Say? What Can I Do?

What can I say? I am dumbfounded. This election was going to be close. I knew that. I wasn't going to say anything afterwards because I knew no matter who the winner was going to be, we as a country were going to have problems. Heck, we already have problems. Many, many problems.

However, I am in shock but not speechless. I don't believe the right man won. I struggle greatly with an America who is cheering for a man who is encouraging dependency and a bigger and more expanded government. A man who has very little interest in spending less money except to pay lip-service to the lie of it. A man that will tell groups of people what they want to hear, but does not do much to make good on that.

Honestly? I am not one for fear-mongering. In fact, I absolutely hate it.

I hope for ourselves and for our country, we have a good next four years. That we have a legislative branch and a judicial branch that will truly balance with the executive branch.  That will look at his executive or…

MYO Oatmeal Packets

One of the things I like to do to save money and control what goes into my body is to make my own oatmeal packets. This is actually very easy to do and only take me roughly twenty minutes to do. 
MYO Oatmeal Packets
What you need to get started:  Old-Fashioned Oats or Quick-Cooking Oats Salt ( I use sea salt)

This time I was making twelve packets so I put 2.5 cups of oats into the food processor. 

I processed the oats into a powder. This will help your oatmeal thicken when it is cooking.


I use snack size bags to make the individual packets. Into each packet you want to add:
1/4 cup oats
2 Tablespoons powdered oats
1/8 teaspoon salt (optional)


If you like your oatmeal plain, you can be done at this point. However, I do not like my oatmeal plain.

My favorite combination of additional ingredients are:
1 Tablespoon raisins
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon golden flax seeds


You can experiment with any number of ingredients: dried  fruits, spices, sweeteners, etc. I…

Monday Frugality Update and Whatnot

This week has been a little more settled this week at our house. Not so quiet, quite busy yet, but a good week all the same. I tried to keep the costs down and not spending on extras. The only money I spent this week that was not for gas or groceries was money I earned outside of my budget. I have been trying to sell things around the house to make extra money and use that as spending money/gift money.

Jordan got her license last Friday which will mean a bit of a readjustment in my budget for insurance and money spent on extra gas.

We have also been watching Extreme Cheapskates on TLC. Oh my word. Honestly...I could probably learn a few things from the people on the show so far. There are quite a few good ideas. But I will never be able to dumpster drive or look through trash cans unless my family's survival depended on it. If you are listening to news reports about Superstorm Sandy, you know people are supposedly having to do that very thing. I encourage everyone to keep up on th…