Saturday, June 29, 2013

A Thrifty Week #10 w/Recipes

Hello Ladies,

I hope you don't mind my skipping last week.  I thought you might enjoy my Forty Ways to Use it Up, Wear it Out, Make it Do, or Do Without.  These are some of the ways that helped me cope when my husband went through a long period of unemployment and underemployment.

Here's my frugal week:

~About noon on Monday, we found that our garage freezer had been unplugged over the weekend.  Someone unplugged it to plug in something else.  Actually, it seems that No One did it.  Have you ever had troubles with No One at your house?  Unfortunately, that meant that I had some thawed meat Monday.  Fortunately, we found out before everything thawed. I know it may not be right; but, I just had my child plug it back in.  Most of the meat had just begun to thaw. I had 10 lbs of chicken breast thawed.


~I cooked 5 lbs in the Crock Pot yesterday.  I made two meals with it.

Chicken Gravy over Biscuits
Prepare gravy using the broth from cooking the chicken in the Crock Pot. 
Add chunks of chicken when the gravy is thickened and heat through.
Serve over biscuits.

Pineapple Chicken

 I mixed a medium sized can of crushed pineapple and about a cup of brown sugar together.  I poured it over 2 lbs of cooked chicken.  I mixed it up, and put it in my indoor freezer for Pineapple Chicken next week.  I'll serve it with rice.


~ I planned my meals around meats and other items we had on hand.  I did buy produce, milk, and items to round out the meals and snacks.

~ A friend found blackberries on the church property.  The kids picked a bunch for me Tuesday.  On Wednesday afternoon, Michael and I made blackberry juice.  Thursday morning, I made 4 half pints and 2 half cups of jelly.  It was a whole lot of work for just a little bit of deep red deliciousness!  One half pint will be opened this week.  One jar will go to Pastor Dan and Cindy.  It was frugal because I already had sugar, pectin, jars, rings and lids on hand.  Unfortunately, it wasn't completely thrifty because I had to buy hydrocortisone for all the kids' itches and bites afterward. :(

~ I found a beautiful teacup and saucer at a rummage sale that I will give to my mother-in-love on her birthday.

~ I repaired one skirt for my daughter that she bought at a rummage sale.

~ I altered one skirt for my daughter that a friend gave her as a hand-me-down.

~ I made No Grate laundry soap with this recipe I found on Pinterest.

Well, I have to get back to cleaning.  Have a terrific week!

Laura
Happy at Home
~~~~~
May I suggest?
~~~~~ 

Go Red For Women ™ presents: 'Just a Little Heart Attack'




~~~~~
May I suggest?

Friday, June 28, 2013

5 Minute Friday: In Between

28 Jun 2013

Five Minute Friday: In Between

Friday, time to crack open the chocolate ice cream and unscripted version of beautiful you!
DSC_0474
Got five minutes? Let’s write. Let’s finger paint with words –>{click to tweet}.
Let’s just write and not worry if it’s just right or not. Here’s how to play along:

1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in {you can grab the button code in my blog footer}.
3. Go leave some comment props for the five minute artist who linked up before you.
It’s a great way to catch your breath at the end of a long week.
OK, are you ready? Let’s see your best five minutes for the prompt:

In between

GO
- See more at: http://lisajobaker.com/#sthash.8W2ZcVx2.dpuf
28 Jun 2013

Five Minute Friday: In Between

Friday, time to crack open the chocolate ice cream and unscripted version of beautiful you!
DSC_0474
Got five minutes? Let’s write. Let’s finger paint with words –>{click to tweet}.
Let’s just write and not worry if it’s just right or not. Here’s how to play along:

1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in {you can grab the button code in my blog footer}.
3. Go leave some comment props for the five minute artist who linked up before you.
It’s a great way to catch your breath at the end of a long week.
OK, are you ready? Let’s see your best five minutes for the prompt:

In between

GO
- See more at: http://lisajobaker.com/#sthash.8W2ZcVx2.dpuf
28 Jun 2013

Five Minute Friday: In Between

Friday, time to crack open the chocolate ice cream and unscripted version of beautiful you!
DSC_0474
Got five minutes? Let’s write. Let’s finger paint with words –>{click to tweet}.
Let’s just write and not worry if it’s just right or not. Here’s how to play along:

1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in {you can grab the button code in my blog footer}.
3. Go leave some comment props for the five minute artist who linked up before you.
It’s a great way to catch your breath at the end of a long week.
OK, are you ready? Let’s see your best five minutes for the prompt:

In between

GO
- See more at: http://lisajobaker.com/#sthash.8W2ZcVx2.dpuf

5 Minutes... Unedited Writing...Stream of Conciousness... Click the button above to write along.
28 Jun 2013

Five Minute Friday: In Between

Friday, time to crack open the chocolate ice cream and unscripted version of beautiful you!
DSC_0474
Got five minutes? Let’s write. Let’s finger paint with words –>{click to tweet}.
Let’s just write and not worry if it’s just right or not. Here’s how to play along:

1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in {you can grab the button code in my blog footer}.
3. Go leave some comment props for the five minute artist who linked up before you.
It’s a great way to catch your breath at the end of a long week.
OK, are you ready? Let’s see your best five minutes for the prompt:

In between

GO
- See more at: http://lisajobaker.com/#sthash.8W2ZcVx2.dpuf





In between...

now and eternity... now and forever... now and never... hope and hopelessness... fear and faith... reality and unreality...  truth and lies....

Now and eternity...
      Christ and selfishness... obedience and rebellion... love and hate...  giving and taking...  Heaven and Hell

Now and forever...
      life and death... love and respect... reconciling and hope

Now and never...
      blessing and cursing... forgive and forget...

Fear and faith...
      trust and hope... live and learn...

Final decision and Wavering...

Choose to Bless.  Choose Life.  Choose to Remain faithful.   Choose Jesus. 

~~~~~
May I suggest?
~~~~~

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Summertime Eating ~ Fast and Easy Salads to Help You Keep Cool

Summertime... and the living is easy well, it's supposed to be anyway.  ~smile~  Some of us find ourselves even busier while the kids are out of school or away from the home school books.  Looking for some cool summer salad recipes to get you out of the kitchen fast?  Here are some of our favorites from Harvest Lane Cottage:
~~~~~
May I suggest?
~~~~~ 


Monday, June 24, 2013

My Family's Favorite Dinner ~ Old-Fashioned Chicken and Dumplings



Source

Chicken and Dumplings
This can be made very frugally with a few backs and necks.  It's a do with what you've got recipe.  I remember being so poor that I'd haggle with the butcher to just buy a few chicken backs or necks.  Even two dollars was more than I had to spend.  Back then I was cooking for two and a toddler.  There are six of us now.  This will make enough for 6 to 8 people.  We make this nearly every time we have family visiting from out of town.  It's our favorite family dinner.
10 lbs Chicken leg quarters, or 1 whole chicken, or any package of chicken of your choice.
The more chicken you boil, the better the broth.  You really want some dark meat for flavor.
6 eggs
flour
salt & pepper
Okay, first of all, put the chicken into a large stockpot. Salt and pepper it generously. Boil the chicken for at least an hour, until the chicken is ready to fall off the bones. Take the chicken from the broth, and put it in the refrigerator until it’s cool enough to handle. Keep the broth simmering.
Next, crack six eggs into a large bowl and beat well with a fork. Add some salt and pepper. Start adding flour half a cup at a time until the dough becomes stiff, hard to mix, and a bit dry. Bring the broth back to a full boil, then begin dropping dough by teaspoonfuls into the broth. Allow them to boil about 20-30 minutes until they are cooked through when you cut them. It won’t hurt them to cook them a little longer. Meanwhile, de-bone the chicken and add back as much chicken as you’d like to the broth. Save the rest for another meal.
Serve this up on a bed of mashed potatoes and enjoy!

~~~~~
Related Posts:
~~~~~ 



Thursday, June 20, 2013

Forty Ways to Use It Up, Wear It Out, Make It Do, or Do Without


Dear Readers,

Hard times are upon many of us.  I've been trying to Use it Up, Wear it Out, Make it Do, or Do Without for several years now. Here are some of the things I've done.


Ways to USE IT UP:

1. Toothpaste- Take the end of your toothbrush and slide it along the toothpaste tube, pushing all the toothpaste up toward the opening to get out all the last bits. If you're at the end and want the very last bit, open the end with scissors and just put your toothbrush inside. You'll get a few more brushings out of the tube.

2. Lotions- If you have body lotion or baby lotion setting around unused, you can use it for shaving lotion. I just put some in my hand, add a bit of water from the faucet and spread it on my skin. The razor slides smoothly. The same is true for unused hair conditioner.

3. Lipstick- Use a lip brush or cotton swab to get the last bits out of the container.

4. Unmatched dishes-either your own or garage sale finds. Use these to give food gifts to neighbors or friends. We have had single neighbors who really appreciate a single serving of soup or whatever meal we're having. Using the mismatched items takes the worry away about getting your dishes back. When they're returned, it's just an added blessing.

5. Oftentimes, I have leftovers that I like to try to remake into something else. Soup's especially good for this. Leftover meat and gravy makes a great soup base.

6. If you have leftover bottles of cleaning supplies, use them!

7. Declutter and sell at yard sales.

8. Declutter your bookshelves and swap on Paper Back Swap. Please mention me, lauraofharvestlane, as referring you.
Trade Books for Free - PaperBack Swap.


9. Sell clothes at consignment shops.

10. Sell other things on ebay.
Ways to WEAR IT OUT:

11. Tear up old towels to use as rags.

12. Wear those old tennis shoes in the creek or to mow the lawn.

13. Wear old clothes around the house; save your nicer things for going out.

14. Wear used clothes from yard sales, thrift stores, or resale stores.

15. Pass clothing down to younger children or to friends. Accept donations, too!

16. Patch those jeans! Put a pretty patch over a stain on a dress or blouse.

17. Let down the hem on your girls' dresses. If it's worn, add some rick rack, flat lace, or fancy machine stitching.

18. Put a ruffle around the bottom of dresses that are too short, or around legs of boys' shorts to make them hand-me-downable to girls.

Ways to MAKE IT DO:

19. I have brushed my teeth with baking soda sprinkled on my wet brush. I have also poured a tiny bit of peroxide over my toothbrush. I've not tried combining them yet.

20. I've used my lipstick as blush. Dot it on; then blend, blend, blend.

21. Cut up old clothes or sheets into your preferred napkin size. Zig-zag stitch or hem the edges. Fold them and leave them in a basket on the table or counter. It works for baby receiving blankets, too.

22. When I make jelly, I use an old pillowcase that is clean and lint free instead of a jelly bag to hang my fruit mixture in to strain it.

23. Remake used or old clothing by: adding pretty patches or yo yos, dying the cloth, embroidering by hand or machine around edges or wear lines where a dress or pants were let out, or adding a ruffle or lace to make it long enough and fresh.

24. The most romantic dinners that my husband and I have had since we were married were those at home. I'd feed the kids and put them to bed early. Then, I'd either prepare something for us; or, we'd eat take out. Sometimes, we'd eat at the kitchen table or dining table, or even at a little table in our bedroom. When we lived in a second floor apartment, I put a tiny round table and two chairs on the balcony. Each time I'd use a nice tablecloth, candles, china or nice dishes, and nice glasses or stemware. Add soft music; and, you have a wonderful setting. Give it a try!

25. You can clean a lot of things with baking soda and/or vinegar. Do some research.

26. Old baskets can be had for a song at many yard sales. You probably have some on hand. They can be spray painted for an updated look or to put goodies in for a gift.

27. Mismatched dishes in a color scheme, from yard sales, look pretty when set on a lovely table cloth. I'm collecting white dishes.

28. A sheet will work for a tablecloth. A two yard length of fabric hemmed at the ends can also make a tablecloth for many tables.

Ways to DO WITHOUT:

29. Don't go shopping for entertainment. Stay away from the mall and online shopping. It's a whole lot easier to do without the latest greatest if you don't go shopping for fun.

30. Stay home. Gas is a luxury these days, so limit trips.

31. Combine trips when you do need to go out. We have to go to a nearby city for some things we need. I like to combine everything I can think of that I need to do in that city on that day.

32. Use a bicycle, if you have one.

33. Invite friends for a potluck. Share the cost of the meal by asking others bring a dish to share.

34. The fewer ingredients in a recipe, the simpler and more cost effective it usually is. Steak is a notable exception to this rule. ~smile~

35. Rethink why you eat. Really, it's just to fill your tummy and to give you nutrition. Rice and beans can do that just as well as meat and potatoes.

36. Always think about what precedents you are setting with your children. A new bike for a birthday or Christmas sets a high precedent for next year. Designer tennis shoes or clothes set a high precedent for next year.

37. Don't allow your children to watch Saturday morning cartoons. The commercials are designed to make your children into gimme monsters.

38. Stay away from toy stores and toy aisles. Don't let your little darlings see what other accessories there are to go with their toys!

39. Stay away from craft and fabric stores! Eek! I knew you wouldn't like that one!

40. Do a Bible study on contentment. "Do not covet your neighbor's______. You fill in the blank.

May God bless you as you journey along this life using it up, wearing it out, making it do and doing without... CHEERFULLY! That part can come only from God!

Blessings,
Laura of Harvest Lane
Happy at Home



Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Strawberry Jam ~ The Best Thing

The best thing about June?  Strawberry jam!  Ever made it yourself?  It's not hard.  You can buy all kinds of special equipment for jam making, but I keep it simple and do with what I've got.  No fancy jam maker or water bath canner for me.  Would I use them if I had them?  Yes.  Am I going to wait to get them?  No way!

What's really necessary?
Clean sterilized canning jars, flat lids and screw rings are required. You can buy a new box of half pint canning jars for around $8.00. The jars are reusable as long as there are no nicks in the jars. You must use new flat lids each time. You can reuse the rings as long as they are not rusted.  A ladle, a wide mouth funnel,  and a magnetic jar lid lifter are helpful.
 Strawberries ~ enough to make 5 cups of crushed berries 
Sugar ~ 7 cups
Sure Gel pectin ~ 1 box
All the instructions are included on the package insert.  Follow them closely and you'll see things like this in your own kitchen.





You'll need a big deep pot.  This is my stainless steel wok.  It's the perfect size.  You can use any deep pot that holds at least 5-6 quarts. 
I usually use a wooden spoon to stir my jam.  This time I used my rubber spatula.  It's one that's made for cooking with heat.  I liked how easy it was to scrape the sides and bottom of the pot.  Constant stirring is imperative.  I didn't take a picture, but I use a deep ten quart pot to water bath my filled jars.  That means I boil the filled jars in the water for 10 minutes (15 minutes for altitudes over 1000 feet).  I boiled water in my tea kettle to add to the kettle after adding the jars.
My aim here is not to give directions on how to make jam but to show you that it is possible even if you don't have fancy equipment.  Get yourself a box of Sure-Gel.  Read the package insert, and you'll see just how easy it can be.  Be strong!  Be courageous!  Make jam!


Blessings from Harvest Lane Cottage,
Laura


Related Posts:




Spring Link Party 

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Carrying an Atmosphere ~ J.R. Miller


“Everyone carries an atmosphere about him. It may be healthful and invigorating, or it may be unwholesome and depressing. It may make a little spot of the world a sweeter, better, safer place to live in; or it may make it harder for those to live worthily and beautifully who dwell within its circle.” 
~J.R. Miller~
 ~~~~~
May I suggest?
~~~~~





Spring Link Party 

Friday, June 14, 2013

A Thrifty Week #9 With Quick BBQ Chicken Sandwiches & Chicken Bone Soup



Hello everyone,

It's been a busy week, but I don't know where it's gone.  I can hardly believe that it's Friday!

Here's my frugal week:

 I started a quart of Kombucha tea.  I don't know what it costs in the store, but I'm sure it's much much less expensive to make at home.

~ I ordered my BeeYoutiful Supermom vitamins with free shipping.  That saved me $6.00.  I also used my Bee Points and saved $10.50.  Total savings $16.50. That is a very big deal.  ~smile~  I almost missed it.  Not being able to sleep at 2:45 Tuesday morning was beneficial. ~smile~ Thanks God!  I know it was God because the song lyrics, "From my heart to the heavens, Jesus be my center. It's all about you, yes it's all about you," just kept going through my spirit over and over.

~ I made Chicken Bone Soup again.  This time I used the bones and bits from a Rotisserie chicken that I bought.  We ate two suppers and one lunch from that one chicken!  


*Quick BBQ Chicken Sandwiches*
Remove chicken from bones of one rotisserie chicken from the store.  
Chop up the meat.
Add BBQ sauce and heat through.
Serve over burger buns.


*Chicken Bone Soup*

Boil chicken bones until you have a nice broth, 30 minutes to an hour. 
Strain out bones and bits of meat and set aside to cool.
Add:
  chopped veggies of your choice or
  leftover potatoes and gravy or
  dumplings or
  macaroni as I did this week. 
  Season with salt, pepper, and perhaps a little rosemary.
The point is to do with whatcha got. 

~ I sewed a tote bag a few weeks ago and sold it in my Etsy shop this week.  I used fabric that I had in my stash.  Money coming in always helps.

~ I listed a new bag in my Etsy shop.

~ I cut out a new dress.  I hope to sew this weekend.

~ I went to a produce auction with my good friend Joyce this morning.  I got about a dozen big jalapeno plants for $3.00.  That should make lots of Jalapeno jelly and Jalapeno poppers this summer.

What thrifty and frugal things have you done this week?

Blessings from Harvest Lane Cottage,
Laura

~~~~~
Related Posts:

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Verdict Changed!

Israel had been going their own way for awhile.  The Philistines had captured the Ark of the Covenant and had recently returned it to the Israelites.  Interesting story there…boils, sores, and misery.  Read about it in I Samuel 5 and 6.  Seems no one wanted to keep the Ark, because it brought trouble to the Philistines no matter which town they sent it to.  The Philistines sent it back to Israel, and it was kept at Abinadab’s house.  His son Eleazar was consecrated to guard the Ark.
Fast forward to chapter 7.  Twenty years later, the people of Israel mourned and sought after the Lord.  That is when Samuel sacrificed and sought the Lord for the people. 
“And Samuel said to the whole house of Israel, ‘If you are returning to the Lord with all your hearts, then rid yourselves of the foreign gods and the Ashtoreths and commit yourselves to the LORD and serve him only, and He will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.’”
Samuel did, they did, and the Lord did.  Of course, not much later, the Israelites fell away from the Lord’s will again.  Much like you and I.
What struck me about this story, as I read it, was its application to us, His people today.  Am I truly am seeking God with my whole heart?  Am I committed to the Lord and serving Him only?  Sadly, I can think of times even today when I not only was acting in the flesh but justifying myself as well.  It’s that old pointing the finger thing that started with Adam and Eve.  Does it justify my sinful feelings and thoughts?  No.  Alas, I’m not judged by how someone else is treating me but by how I respond.  Today, the verdict is guilty
Thankfully, I’ve got someone else who served my sentence before I even committed the sin, before I was born.  His name is Jesus, the Christ, the Messiah that Jewish people looked forward to for so many years.  Because of Jesus, I now have a new verdict– not guilty.  He took my guilt and was crucified and resurrected.  He paid the price for me.  I only need look to Him and faith and believe.  I need to return and commit, repeatedly if need be.
“If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.  If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.  If we claim we have not sinned, we make Him out to be a liar and His word has no place in our lives.”  1 John 1:8-10
I think I need to spend a bit of time in prayer now.  What about you?
Laura 
Thankful for the Sacrifice that Changed my Verdict

Laura Lane is a big city girl gone small town gone country.  She lives just outside Joplin, Missouri of tornado fame.  Laura met Jesus at fifteen and met her high school sweetheart husband at sixteen.  She's been married over 25 years and homeschools three of her four children.  She enjoys her Bible, reading, writing, quilting, sewing, scrapbooking, baking and making soup.  
Laura writes at Harvest Lane Cottage, encouraging others in their walk with Jesus, homemaking, homeschooling, and reading.

~~~~~
May I suggest?



Mommy Moments Strangers and Pilgrims 

Spring Link Party 

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Planning and Making Do... What I Hope I Get Done This Week!

Hello Ladies!

So good of you to drop in today.  If you stopped by yesterday, you may have seen  this post in all its confusion.  I hit publish instead of save and didn't realize it until Miss Dorothy wrote a comment to me, and it showed up in my e-mail inbox!  Talk about keeping it real!  So, please accept my apology.  Let's try again!

I've been thinking of things I would like to get done over the next week or so.  You know how it is.  Always something to do.  So, here are some things I hope to do this week.  I think I'll come back here and change the items to italics as I do them just to give myself a little encouragement along the way.


Baking:
~ I'm in the mood for some old-fashioned oatmeal cookies.  I've baked with this recipe ever since I was a little girl.  I have no idea where it originated. 


Cooking:  
~ I'm going to have my son look for another Chicken of the Woods mushroom to make Cream of Mushroom Soup.  None found. :(
~ Kombucha tea 

Harvesting:
~ I think our Romaine lettuce will be ready.

Canning or Freezing:
I'm not sure yet.  I don't think anything will be ready to can from the garden.  If I find a good sale on berries, I might make some jam.  

Reading:  
YouVersion's 60 Day New Testament Reading Plan.  I'll finish the Gospels and begin Acts.  I'm way ahead of the reading plan.  Most days it calls for 3 or 4 chapters.  I'm accustomed to reading or listening to several chapters.  Sometimes I use Bible Gateway and listen until I need to do something else. ~smile~


~ I'm also reading  Buttons and Bones* by Monica Ferris.  I borrowed it from the library.  It's a cozy mystery book.  That means I can read it without worry that it will be filled with bad language, s--, or unnecessary crime details, if you know what I mean.  I just get to try to solve the clues along with amateur detective Betsy Devonshire, a needlework shop owner.  It's just a fun read. 

Finding:  
~ Three missing library books... 

Sewing:
~ Ladies' Quilting Group on Tuesday.  Cut strips for a new quilt.
~ Cut out my black dress.
~ Patch yet another pair of my son's jeans.  He needs a new hobby.  Tearing his jeans is not thrifty and frugal, but mending them is!  If I am inspired and have time, I'll finish cutting out a new black dress with little red cherries on it.

Studying:
I have homework for two classes at church.
~ I'm studying the book Love and Respect * with my husband in the couples' class.
~ I'm studying Girls with Swords* with my daughter in the ladies' class.

Working:  
~ Mail an order I received through my Etsy shop this evening.
~ Photograph new handbags I've finished.
~ List new bags in Etsy shop.
~ Write a review.

If I finish all this list, I'll have been very busy indeed.  I also need to spend time with my kids and do some ironing and cleaning.  Thanks so much for dropping in!  I'd love to hear some of your plans for this week.  It's so nice to have a chat over the back fence  internet with you today!

Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage
Happy at Home
~~~~~
May I suggest?

Monday, June 10, 2013

Declutter Thrifty Homemade Macaroni and Cheese for Hard Times

Declutter Thrifty Macaroni and Cheese
We ate some funny macaroni and cheese awhile back.  It was part macaroni, part broken up manicotti shells, and part spaghetti!  

~I made the sauce by whisking a cup of milk and 2 tablespoons of cornstarch together.  
~I added it to two tablespoons of hot melted butter and whisked it in the pan over medium high heat.  
~I added a little more milk when it got thick.  
~Next I cut up chunks of cheddar cheese into the mixture and stirred.  
~I added milk and stirred until it was of a thickness I liked.  
~I poured this over the cooked funny macaroni.  

Not bad!  It used up odds and ends from the cupboard, too!  I guess I could call it Declutter Mac and Cheese!

Just one more way to be thrifty and frugal and survive hard times.

Blessings from Harvest Lane Cottage,
Laura 
Happy to be Home


~~~~~
May I suggest?

Friday, June 7, 2013

A Thrifty Week #8 with Frugal Recipes: Black Bean Quickie Burritos & Chicken Bone Soup

Being thrifty means doing with watcha got, making do, using it up, wearing it out, doing without.  It means foregoing some costly pleasures and finding pleasure in less costly things.  As you practice thriftiness, it becomes pleasurable to find bargains, to make something useful again, or to practice self-control.

Here's my thrifty week:
~ No yard saling this week due to storms.  Sometimes staying home is the thriftiest option!

~ I taught my son, Michael, to make refried beans.  We don't actually refry them.  We just mash them and add cheese.  We used two pounds of pinto beans so that we could have two meals.  We wrapped the beans in tortillas and spread the beans on tostada shells.

~ I baked chicken leg quarters in my clay cooker Tuesday evening.  I deboned the chicken prior to serving to make it stretch.  I left a bit of meat on the bones so that they could be boiled for a soup base later.

~ My daughter substituted coconut oil for canola oil for biscuits.  While coconut oil is more expensive than canola oil, it's even more expensive to drive to town to get an item when we run out.

~ I used the chicken bones to make soup  I just covered them with water and added a little salt.  I let them simmer awhile and looked through my cupboard for other things to add.

*Chicken Bone Soup*
Boil chicken bones until you have a nice broth, 30 minutes to an hour.
Strain out bones and bits of meat and set aside to cool.
Add:
  chopped veggies of your choice or
  leftover potatoes and gravy or
  dumplings or
  macaroni as I did this week.
  Season with salt, pepper, and perhaps a little rosemary.
The point is to do with whatcha got.

~ I began reading a new book that I will review.  I review for several companies for free books, videos, cds, curriculum.  It's just one more way that I stretch my husband's income.

~ I made black bean burritos and guacamole and chips for dinner.  The burritos were easy.  The guacamole was made with avocados I bought on sale for $.25 each.  The chips were from Aldi, so they were inexpensive.

*Black Bean Quickie Burritos*
  3 cans black beans, drained but not dry
  cumin
  oregano
  garlic powder
  onion flakes
  chili powder
  salt
  4 oz Cheddar, Monterrey Jack, or Pepper Jack cheese, shredded or chunked

Heat the beans in a skillet.  There should be just enough bean broth to keep them from sticking.  Add about a teaspoon of cumin and half a teaspoon of the remaining spices.  Adjust to taste.  When the beans are hot, mash with a potato masher.  Add cheese to the beans and stir until the cheese melts. Serve with warm tortillas or tostada shells.

~We stayed home most of the week.  Staying home can save a lot of money for us.  We have just one car, so when I want to use it, I have to drive my husband to work and return at the end of the day to pick him up.  That uses extra gas.

~ I mended a skirt, a nightgown, and a dress while watching The Visual Bible The Book of Matthew that I bought at a library sale a few weeks ago.

~I also worked on an apron that I'm making for Amy from a denim jumper that she'd outgrown.  It had a seam down the back.  I ripped out the seam last week.  This week I pinned and hand-stitched the edges to make a neat edge.  I left room to add ties at the top.  I'll probably make a tie for the waist as well.  I just haven't decided what to use yet.

All in all, I think it's been a thrifty week.  I hope you try the recipes and let me know what you think.  I'd like you to share some of your favorite frugal ideas in the comments as well.  I love it when readers "talk back".

Blessings from Harvest Lane Cottage,
Laura
Happy at Home

~~~~~
 May I suggest?
A Quick & Cheap Lunch
~~~~~





Shared:
Spring Link Party 

A Beautifully Fragrant Spring




All of the flowers are thriving in the garden, both those we planted this year and those that former owners and God planted.  I've seen a rose bush come back to life that I'd thought dead these last two years.  The peonies bloomed at Memorial Day just as they should, filling the house with their intoxicating fragrance.  The wildflowers have been abundant in the meadow.  Vases and jars have been filled and scattered throughout the house.  No need for air fresheners here.

I was enjoying a few moments of quiet on the porch a couple of days ago enjoying the late afternoon breeze.    Honeysuckle vines fragranced the air with their sweetness.  I pondered, what must Eden have been like?  Breathtakingly beautiful, vibrant hues, a heady collection of exquisite flowers and plants that filled Adam and Eve's senses.

How hard it must have been to face a world outside Eden that I imagine might have been like a typical August in Missouri, hot, dry, dusty, dull.  I'm sure the world lacked luster to Adam and Even in every way imaginable.  More importantly, it would have been so lonely.  I wonder if they prayed.  I wonder if God answered.  Certainly not face-to-face.  What sadness and mourning must they have felt?  What torment of regret?  Did every generation feel that sense of loss as they were told the stories of life before?

Oh, thank you God that You made a way for us even prior to that first sin.  Thank you that you chose before the creation that Jesus, by His obedience, death, resurrection and love, would make a way for us to be reunited to God Our Heavenly Father.
Romans 5:19

"For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous."  King James Bible

Thank you Lord my strength!

~~~~~
May I suggest?



Mommy Moments

Thursday, June 6, 2013

A Perfect Tea for One

...on the Front Porch 
...Constant Comment Tea, orange slices and almonds...
...1 Corinthians 14 & 15 
...piano music by Jim Brickman and a gentle rain.

Laura
Happy at Home



Monday, June 3, 2013

Our Family is Growing! Our Chicken Family that is.

Our "family" is growing!
Our chicken family that is.  
~smile~
 We've got 14 pullet chicks to replace our hens that were killed a couple of months ago. 
 
 We had to get the kittens grown and adopted out before we could begin again.  Now that they have homes, we're in the chicken business again.
I cannot wait to see those little hens strutting around the yard eating all the little bugs!

Hens make me happy.
Having a son to clean the chicken coop makes me even happier.
~smile~

Blessings from Harvest Lane Cottage
Laura
~~~~~
May I suggest?
A Lovely Rainy Afternoon

Shared: