Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Thrifty Tuesday

Is it something to do with aging? Why do the weeks and months seem to pass by in a blur?

The Collins Gage Canadian dictionary defines thrift as economical management, the habit of saving.

In thinking of this definition perhaps my greatest thrifty endeavor has been knitting 4 afghans/blankets out of orphan balls of yarn and the little bits and bobs of skeins that remained from other projects. That's a great deal of knitting for very little cost. It also enabled me to enjoy a hobby and donate the finished projects to a place where they will have a good home.

I am not quite finished the fourth blanket (just a bit more to do) but give me one more day and it will be completed. Pictures will be posted ASAP.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Menu Monday

Ahhh, the last week in March and hopefully BBQ season will be able to start (not every day but once in awhile would be just lovely).

Monday

Time to use up that leftover spaghetti and meat sauce from Saturday. I will be making baked spaghetti and serving it with coleslaw once again.

Tuesday

Leftover pork roast, not too sure what I will do with this. Perhaps a pork hash.

Wednesday

Clean out the fridge, pretty sure there will be enough leftover Baked Spaghetti to have for supper tonight. Plan on using up some of the asparagus as well.

Thursday

Finish off the last of the stuffed chicken breasts. Serving this with rice and if there is any asparagus left it is going with this meal.

Friday

Perogies.

Saturday

Chicken drumsticks, mashed potatoes, green beans and carrots.

Sunday

The pork roast I should have made last Sunday (decided it was better to clean out the fridge) along with roasted veggies.

Everybody have a wonderful day.

God bless.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Spring Has Sprung, or Has It

Here in southern Saskatchewan it seems that after a long and snowy winter spring has finally arrived. The snow piles are sinking and turning that ugly black colour, water from melting snow and ice is making it's way into the many ditches and the sewer systems throughout the city.

Today I got to see even more of the garden emerging from its winter blanket of white. Makes me realize how much I want to be out puttering in the yard, planting flowers, veggies and herbs. Not much longer.

However in the north of the province the story is much different. Today various areas were hit with freezing rain, heavy wet snow and cold temperatures. They will be waiting a bit longer for spring weather.

One thing I have learned about living in this province, spring is never for sure and Harvey still expects a heavy wet snowfall to arrive before he will say spring is here.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Frugal Friday

1. I have pulled out the seeds that I saved from some of my plants this year. Seedlings will be started at the end of this month.

2.  Harvey bottled 30 bottles of raspberry merlot wine this week.

3.  Trying to use a bit less meat in recipes. So far no complaints from Harvey so I will continue to do this.

4.  Using coupons more as well as our Coop stores app. This week the app got me $2.00 off 4 liters of milk.

5.  Did a bit of replacement shopping for my winter wardrobe. Winter items were marked down to $2.00 or $3.00. For $11.00 I got 3 tops, 6 pairs of socks, and a nice long sweater vest (probably could have knit this, but not for the price I got it for).

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Federal and Provincial Budget Time

For the first time in many years both the Federal budget and my provinces budget were handed down on the same day.

There were really no surprises in the Federal budget, no real tax increases except on cigs and alcohol (always seems to hit that) and a few credits removed (the transit credit,  which wasn't really working anyway....most people still drove to work).

However the Provincial budget is not good. It stops just before it could be said to be cruel.

Our provincial bus system will be no more, so that means another 300 people out of a job and perhaps some of our older citizens unable to get from smaller centers to larger centers for appointments.

Then the provincial sales tax is rising. It will be moving up from 5% to 6% and things that have not been taxed for a very long time (children's clothing, insurance premiums, construction) will now be taxed. This means everything will be going up.

Along with the Federal budget hitting tobacco and alcohol, so too does the Provincial budget.

Schools and the health sector will not be getting as much funding, which could mean a loss of jobs in both those areas. I have a feeling this will mean more children knocking on our doors trying to raise money for school upkeep and necessary upgrades to computers and such. I am worried that we will loose nurses and doctors and wait times could once again lengthen.

The light at the end of the tunnel is that Federal income tax was not raised, and neither was Provincial income tax, in fact we could see a slight decrease in provincial income tax next year.

It just seems that our children and those that follow could be inheriting a big fat zero in terms of work and getting ahead.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Finally

As Harvey would say.....Finally!!

The last three years, Harvey has had his name on a waiting list for his favorite football team and season tickets.

This morning (thank heavens I am nosey and have his email delivered to a program I can look at) I noticed an email from the team headquarters. This year he finally got to buy season tickets. Got him upstairs, told him this would be his Father's Day, Birthday and Christmas gift and he got his tickets (Kris and he go to as many games as they can in a season). In reality buying the season tickets were actually cheaper than the two of them going to 4 games this season, and these will be his tickets for as long as Harvey wants them (and continues to pay for them).

Harvey is happy, Kris is happy and me, well I am happy as well. Kris and Harvey get to bond and if Kurt happens to be home there is a ticket for him as well. All is good here even after spending a chunk of money.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Menu Monday

Supposedly this is the first week of spring, and while the snow is disappearing slowly but surely, I am keeping my fingers crossed that it is no longer going to snow.

Monday

Clean out the fridge.... I have leftover meatloaf from a few days ago that we will use for supper tonight. Add in a salad and the leftover mashed potatoes and the meal is done.

Tuesday

Leftover beef roast. Think I will do strips of beef up with onions and gravy. Then serve them over freshly baked biscuits.

Wednesday

Honey Garlic Sausage, baked beans, and salad.

Thursday

Leftover Ham made into scalloped potatoes and ham, served with a salad.

Friday

German noodles (my family have always called it Glace), sauted onions and fried eggs.

Saturday

Spaghetti and meat sauce along with a salad.

Sunday

Pork Roast, roasted potatoes, sprout/cauliflower mixture roasted as well.

So there is my menu for the week, but depending on what needs to be used up there might be a few changes.... There always is.

Everybody have a wonderful day.

God bless.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Sunday Ramblings

Two of the readings today talk about "thirst". The first reading from the Old Testament is during Moses leading the people of Israel through the desert. The people are angry and complain to Moses about being thirsty. Moses speaks to God and is told to go and strike a rock in front of all the people of Israel.

I keep thinking about Christ and living water. To me these Old Testament verses are a foreshadowing/foretelling of Our Saviour and the Last Supper. Also of the wine and water that flowed from his side after one of the Roman soldiers pierced it.

It has been a quiet day, one of reflection and waiting. A different kind of waiting from Advent, but waiting none the less.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Saturday Round Up

Once again it has been a relatively quiet week on the old homestead. The best thing being, slowly the snow is disappearing and I sure hope that by the end of the month there will be more grass showing than dirty snow.

I have been working on my various projects and it almost looks as if I will meet my goal of finishing two cross stitch kits and the knitted blankets. I am loving using up all the bits and pieces of yarn in my stash.

I hope to have some pictures soon of my finished projects. Perhaps by the end of next week.

So far no forward movement on the furnace venting front. We keep hoping to hear from them very soon. I am so looking forward to getting things back to normal in the basement, and I am sure Harvey is as well.

The wine making is moving along and keeps Harvey busy some days, other days, well I try and search out little projects for him to do.

Kris called us this week. It seems he applied and interviewed for a position back with the city of Regina almost two months ago. Since he hadn't heard anything he figured he hadn't gotten the position and never told us about it. The city called him on Tuesday evening and he will be starting back there on April 3. I got a sense of relief from Kris when we were talking, I guess doing the work of 6 people (all the marketing department left or had been laid off), worrying about having a job every time a layoff wave came, and wondering if anyone really knew or understood who he was working for and what he did, became very stressful for him. Now he will be back to doing his first love Business System Analyst and only reporting to one boss instead of 3. I sure hope this works out for him. Another reason he decided to go back was because the city has a defined pension plan and between renting, fuel and plain living expenses the job he was in did not pay enough to really fund a RRSP. He has managed to put a few thousand into one, but he really decided it would be best to be somewhere where the company matched his payments.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Frugal Friday

Time for my Frugal Five for the week.

1.  Got a free McCain Marche when shopping this week.

2.  Did a small stock up using BOGO free on items I was shopping for anyway.

3.  Using up leftovers to make new meals.

4.  Opening drapes and blinds to take advantage of the sunlight.

5.  Darning and mending clothing where possible.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Better Late, Than Never, Mid Month Update



1. Start planning my herbs and flower baskets. Now that the weather has changed for the better I feel more like starting to plan.
 
2.  Knitting. I hope to get two blankets done plus a shawl.  Shawl and one blanket are finished. Hope to finish the second one shortly.
 
3.  Get two of the simpler cross stitch kits completed.  First kit finished and second is coming along nicely.
 
4.  Continue with project Declutter.  Project declutter has slowed down this month. Still I am removing a few items from the house.
 
5.  Start some seedlings.  Not started as of yet, but will before the end of the month.
 
6.  Plant orange and lemon seeds. I would love to get a lemon and/or and orange tree growing this year.  Seeds are planted, now just keeping my fingers crossed that something pokes its head out of the soil.
 
7.  Have 22 no spend days this month.  Up to 12 no spend days so far. I am very hopeful that I will meet and perhaps even exceed this goal.
 
Everybody have a wonderful evening.
 
God bless.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Nope, Not Yet

Well this is the week the furnace guys are supposed to finish up the venting and cutting a hole through the cement wall in the basement. Has it happened yet? Have we gotten a phone call? The answer to both questions is a resounding NO.

Jackie is getting a mite testy here. I am tired of having things in storage, I am tired of trying to get my washing done in an over stuffed room, and I am definitely sure Harvey is tired of not having his man cave. I think this situation might call for drastic measures. What those measures are I have no idea of at this time, but I am sure I will think of something.

Other than that sore point things are just fine here. The sun shone today, the temperature went up to just below freezing and I even see a bit of melting on the roads. I will not say spring is here cause things change very quickly and we are likely to get another storm before winter is through. I will however take what we are given and enjoy the weather while I can.

Harvey is slowly getting over whatever it was that was bothering him, but is still not eating like he used to. I think he may have put himself on a diet (something I should do as well, but it seems like the less I eat the more I gain).

Thrifty Tuesday has been so so.

What did I manage to be thrifty with today???? Well I darned some socks (might be time to break down and buy some new ones), sewed a couple of buttons on a shirt of Harvey's, used up some bits and bobs making our supper, and got another no spend day under my belt. Not to badly done.

I also went through fliers and made up a small shopping list for tomorrow. I try and combine errands and since I need to pay mid month bills, get fuel for the car and our biweekly spending money I may as well get the few groceries we need. Saves me time as well as wear and tear on the car.

So how were you thrifty this week?

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Menu Monday

There have been many switches of menu plans over the last week. Harvey was ill, could not eat much, and there were a few things I needed to rid us of. Here is hoping we are back on track for this week.

Monday

Some leftover frozen pork roast made into a hearty and filling casserole.

Tuesday

Ham and scalloped potato casserole using up some leftover ham, served with a salad.

Wednesday

Clean out the fridge night. There will some of both casseroles left so I will clear them out of the fridge.

Thursday

Sweet and Sour ribs along with rice and peas. Perhaps there will be some salad left over.

Friday

Fish Fillets, more than likely trout served with leftover rice, and green beans.

Saturday

Meat loaf, mashed potatoes, mixed peas and carrots.

Sunday

Beef roast, roast potatoes (or leftover mashed), gravy, salad, and corn.

Hope I can stick to this for the week, but of course it all depends on how Harvey is feeling and if the furnace people come or not.

Everybody have a wonderful day.

God bless.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Sunday Ramblings

Today the Gospel asks us to put our trust in God. This could be something that people find difficult to do.

Father Brian spoke in his Homily about how following horoscopes, mediums, and fortune tellers is not putting our trust in God. Rather it is putting ones trust in things that are not trust worthy or false. How having trust in Christ and God lead us ever closer to the perfection that we were made to have.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Simple Saturday Living

It has been very quiet around here today.

Harvey did some last minute clean up and moving of wires in the basement so the furnace guys can get right to work.

I did the few household chores that needed to be done (mainly cooking and cleaning up after the cat which some days is a never ending job), and spent the rest of the day watching old CSI episodes, working on my cross stitch or reading.

I also spent some time reading blogs. My goodness, some people seem to live a much more exciting life than I do!! However if Harvey has to stay up here with me much longer and I do not get any alone time I am afraid my life could get a bit exciting. Meaning I might just have to tie him up and throw him in a corner or perhaps dig a rather large hole in the backyard to put him in. Both of us need our time alone and get slightly grumpy if we don't get said time alone. I foresee lots of walks for me providing the weather holds.

I decided to take a look at the budget so far and we seem to be right on track for being below many budget lines again this month. This is a good thing as with two family reunions this summer there will be a bit more holiday spending than planned. Hopefully not too much more as we have a bit of a holiday planned for September.

The only part of the budget that I am really worried about is the renovations to the basement. It seems as if everything doubles in price by the time we are done. One good thing is that Harvey can do most of the work himself, just leaving the electrical and furnace stuff to be done by those trained to do that kind of work. Still, things do add up and hopefully I will have a total cost that is not too far over the estimate to show you all when everything is completed.

Off to get a movie set up on the android box. Guess we can call this a date night, just not the type of movie I really like watching, but I will try to enjoy it.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Frugal Friday

Just a regular frugal week here on the old homestead.

1.  I managed 5 no spend days since last Friday. Of course blizzards and cold do keep a person rather homebound.

2.  Got a free large loaf of rye bread for spending $75.00 on groceries this week.

3.  Found some brand new sheets at the Salvation Army Thrift Store. Since these are for a single bed, I will use them to make Harvey a pair of sleep pants. The pillow cases will be used to fashion a new apron for  myself.

4.  Found a cross stitch kit that I will be using as a gift come June. Decided that this is the second kit I will work on this month.

5.  Darned some socks, fixed a seam or two, and planted some lemon and orange seeds.

Everybody  have a wonderful evening.

Gdo bless.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Whew, We Are Free

We spent most of the morning, digging our way out of the driveway. Nice to know that we can get in and out for a few days. Well at least until the next predicted series of snowfalls.

We are supposed to be getting more snow starting Saturday and going into Monday, because of that I am going to take advantage of our nice weather tomorrow and get a very few groceries, Harvey's meds, some cat supplies, take a look and see if flannel sheets are on sale (plan on using them to make Harvey a couple of pj bottoms), see if there is some fabric that is suitable for cushions, and buy fuel for the car. I will also pay a couple of bills on line. Then it will be time to sit back and relax until, well, the snow hits the fan.

March is always unpredictable here on the Canadian prairies, but I am really hoping that this will be our last month of winter.

One really good thing about getting storm stayed is that I manage to get extra cleaning done as well as a few projects. I finished the roses cross stitch and have started the next kit. Did not get much done as of yet, but I am hopeful that it will be finished before the end of the month. This one is going to be a gift for a friend on their birthday.

Another really good thing about 2 or 3 day blizzards is that I do not spend any money. Love collecting all those no spend days, means I am saving money for holidays come the summer and fall. Sure makes keeping budget lines down very easy.

Just thought I would share some pictures from around the city during and after the storm.

 
 
This is the road in front of the school I used to work at. By the end of the storm the banks of snow were over 8 feet tall.
 
Cars stuck on the highway overnight about 20 miles from the city.

Truck meets snowbank. Snowbank 1----Truck 0.

Highways are opened once again, and things are opening up in the city as well. Crews will be working around the clock to get us up and moving before the next storm hits.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.




Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Day Two

Remember when I said I didn't know if March came in like a lion or a lamb??? Well this week it is definitely lion.

We are on day two of a blizzard.

This is a picture of the main street in my small city as the storm began yesterday morning. Believe me it got much worse with zero visibility and lots of very large snow drifts.

This is a picture out my front door during one small lifting of the storm this afternoon.
At times today we could not see across the street. Really not much snowfall, but the wind whipped everything up causing large drifts and wind scoured ice. Highways have been closed and people are stranded on those highways.

So for the last two days Harvey and I have stayed in the house, watching the snow pile up and hoping the power does not go out (it has in some areas of the city). This has done wonders for not spending, but both of us are getting a bit of cabin fever. After much discussion neither of us could remember the last 2 day blizzard, we just figure as far as we can remember it was when the boys were young.

I did a bit of mending today. Harvey had a pair of pajamas that needed some seam repairs done. Used up the leftovers from previous meals for lunch and supper as well. Those are my thrifty's for today.

Then I spent the afternoon working on my cross stitch.

One leaf and the backstitching left. I am hoping to be done this little project by Thursday and can then pull out another.

When the lighting gets too bad in the evenings I pull out my knitting. Right now I am using some Baby Cake yarn from Caron and knitting this bright wrap. Slowly but surely I am making my way through the skein, or should I say "cake".

I don't think I ever posted a picture of my last blanket. This one is also made from leftover bulky yarn.


Well off to visit you all.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Menu Monday

Blissful sleep last night. I really think Harvey is on the mend, he only managed to wake me up once and I fell right back to sleep. The only problem now is that we are entering a blizzard (started with freezing rain) and will be in one for the next two days. This is causing me a few problems, but I plan on working through the aches.

Harvey being sick also caused me to change my menu around. Here is hoping he is able to eat bigger meals.

Monday

Hopefully we will have the ham that was planned for Sunday. If not I think I will use up some of the leftover roast beef in my fridge freezer... Not sure what I will make, but hopefully something that will stick to our ribs on this cold and blustery day.

Tuesday

The last of the smoked sausage along with a salad, and perhaps some pasta or baked beans.

Wednesday

Stuffed Chicken breasts with salad and rice.

Thursday

Leftover ham perhaps made into ham and scalloped potatoes,

Friday

Fish Fillets, homemade fries, and salad.

Saturday

Pork chops, rice, carrots and the leftover salad.

Sunday

Roast chicken, roasted potatoes, roasted carrots, stuffing and gravy.

So unless one of us becomes ill or is not feeling up to par this will be the menu for the week.

Everybody have a wonderful day.

God bless.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Sunday Ramblings

This will be a quick post before heading off to sleep.

Harvey became sick yesterday afternoon and without me knowing slept most of the day away. Thus he was up most of the night. Now I don't know about other husbands but mine can not seem to get in or out of bed without a great deal of noise. He rather makes a production of the whole thing. Add in his not feeling well and along with the almost falling into the bed (most times narrowly missing my head as he flings out his arms), you get moans and groans.

Today I managed to keep him awake and so l am hopeful of some uninterrupted sleep.

Talk to you all tomorrow.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Frugal Shopping Habits

As so many in this life, I also shopped out of habit and for entertainment. Now when I was working, this was not so big a problem. Once I stopped working, my shopping habit became something I needed to break.

Here are some of the ways I nipped what could have become a big problem, into something more manageable, and more in keeping with they way I wanted our lives to be.

1.  Stop shopping for entertainment. I started only to head to the shops when I had a specific purchase in mind.

2.  I started going to second hand shops and joined the on line garage sale sites. My area does not have a Freecycle group or a Craigs List. Keeping my eyes on the sites I do belong to has netted me craft supplies, and an almost new dryer for a fraction of what these items would have cost.

3.  I joined Costco and after comparing prices I know exactly what I want to buy when I go for our stock up shops.

4.  I have clipped coupons or downloaded them from the stores online site. By using my coupons along with the stores flier I have managed to save. Perhaps not as much as Extreme Couponers, but enough to make it worth my while.

5.  I try to buy only on sale merchandise. Waiting a month or two can save a person lots of money. Prices do drop.

6.  I always check out the store fliers and shop sale items for my pantry and freezers.

7.  Shopping alone (well most of the time) prevents strange things from ending up in my cart, and any surprises at the check out.

8.  Don't buy any item in the checkout aisle. These are usually over priced and set up to grab your attention. My husband usually falls for this one.

9.  Never, ever shop when you are hungry. I used to run to the grocery after work... Bad move, lots of prepackaged meals ended up in the cart and those prices are crazy expensive for what you get.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Frugal Friday

March has been snowy and cold so far, it is supposed to be nicer tomorrow and then we are right back to cold and snow. Not that we need any more snow.

So, how have I been frugal this week?

1.  Called Kris and used our phone package to great advantage.

2.  Using up as many leftovers as is possible either for lunches or making them over into a new meal.

3.  Cut up some envelopes into scrap paper to take phone calls on, or write grocery lists.

4.  Sent in my scanned shopping trips and I am almost at the point where I can order another gift (might wait a bit and have extra points before I do so).

5.  Made a list and stuck to it.

6.  Went to the dentist for a cleaning, and while this might not sound frugal, for the first time ever they did not use the machine on my teeth, and I was in and out in under 30 minutes!!! This session will cost our insurance company the least of all my visits.

I finished the second bulky blanket today, and decided to work on a colourful wrap for myself. I really love wearing shawls and wraps on those cooler spring, summer and fall mornings or evenings.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

March Monthly Goals

 
1. Start planning my herbs and flower baskets.
 
2.  Knitting. I hope to get two blankets done plus a shawl.
 
3.  Get two of the simpler cross stitch kits completed.
 
4.  Continue with project Declutter.
 
5.  Start some seedlings.
 
6.  Plant orange and lemon seeds. I would love to get a lemon and/or and orange tree growing this year.
 
7.  Have 22 no spend days this month.
 
March has come in halfway between a lamb and a lion. The forecast is calling for snow over the next couple of days and then the temperature rises before falling and more snow arriving. It looks like winter will be with us for awhile yet.
 
Everybody have a wonderful evening.
 
God bless.