Friday, July 29, 2016

A Thrifty Week at Harvest Lane Cottage #74

Welcome to another thrifty week at Harvest Lane Cottage. I am honored by your visit.  Each week I share my thrifty and frugal projects, ways of saving money, and my blessings from God. 


I am so glad you dropped in for a visit today—or tonight!

♥♥♥
Well, the big news this week is that we bought a van. We got it yesterday, and I haven't taken any photos yet. It's black and in good condition. The second big news is that my son's new-to-him truck has a lot of problems. It won't pass state inspection until he gets most of them fixed. We won't know until tomorrow what that will cost. Ah well, God will work it all out.

I love it when y'all leave comments, so I can meet you and see your blogs, too.

~~~~~
♥♥♥
~~~~~~
Here's my thrifty week:

  • My husband and I bought a van. It's a used van, and we bought it from a Mennonite man who has a small car lot east of our town. He gave us a God deal of a price for it. Lowell told him what he needed, and the man found it for him at an auction at the right price. It still has a little bit of warranty left on it, too! Buying a car is never truly thrifty, but this time it was pretty good deal. 
  • We ate tomatoes from our garden.
  • A friend brought us some chicken and some romaine lettuce. My refrigerator was pretty bare. I had just cleaned it out when she texted me. Quite a blessing. It made for a late supper, but it was good.
  • Another friend brought lettuce, donuts, and a few other items.
  • I found boneless chicken breasts for $1.69. We ate a terrific Greek salad Thursday that tasted like it was from a fancy restaurant. It's in the Trim Healthy Mama* cookbook. It's called Grand Greek Salad.
  • I bought a set of text and workbooks from Ebay. 
  • Another friend brought me a box of breaded chicken ready to be baked or fried.
Well, that doesn't seem like much. I guess I'd better do better next week! I have plans for sewing with fabric I have in my stash. I want to make some nifty personal Kleenex holders that are made by folding and sewing fabric. I don't know if I'll get it done. August 1st is Monday. It's the day I plan to start school with my daughter. I may just have her start math and science. I'm not really ready yet for the other things. My son will start in a couple weeks when he's done with his summer job.

Well, that's my thrifty week. 
~~~~~
What are you doing in your home this week?
~~~~~

Think about on your blessings!

ஐღLauraღஐ 
...doing what I can with what I've got
where I am on a short shoestring budget!
~~~~~

You might enjoy reading...

~~~~~

~~~~~
*Affiliate link included.


Monday, July 25, 2016

Christmas in July ~ Handmade Gift Ideas


Do you love a homemade Christmas? I do! Everything just seems like it means a bit more when you've put your time, effort, and care into it. Homemade, handmade, heartmade, thrifty, money saving gifts can be a blessing to the giver and the receiver. It doesn't happen overnight though. Okay, I admit it. I've been the crazy mom sewing on Christmas Eve and trying to finish wrapping. I don't want to do that anymore!

July is the perfect time to start brainstorming what you want your Christmas to be like this year. If that is to include homemade gifts, it's never too early to start. Here are some ideas to get you going.

Homemade Gift Ideas

Paper Craft
~ decorated recipe cards (could add recipes and ingredients)
~ homemade greeting cards
~ scrapbook

From the Needles
~ tribbles
~ dishcloths
~ aprons
~ mittens
~ doll clothes
~ skirt
~ tablet stand
~ camera bean bag
~ key chain
~ Christmas stockings
~ hair baubles
~ casserole hot pad
~ drawstring bags
~ kitchen curtains
~ tote bag
~ pillow cases
~ ornaments
~ crocheted chains for hair ribbons
~ tea towels
~ doilies
~ pacifier clip
~ accessory bag
~ earbud pouch
~ baby bib
~ tea wallet
~ pin cushion
~ shawl
~ slippers
~ socks
~ cape
~ camera strap
~ Bible cover
~ mug rug
~ tissue holder

Crafted
~ arrow holder (quiver)
~ CD holder for car
~ strap for guitar
~ ornaments
~ magnets
~ candles
~ soap
~ coasters

From the Kitchen
~ cookies
~ homemade vanilla
~ recipe scrapbook with photos or on large cards
~ bread
~ quick breads
~ candy
~ homemade mixes

Acts of Service
~ all clothes ironed
~ clean out car
~ babysitting


Be creative! Your imagination and ingenuity can make a thrifty budget stretch far!

Happy Christmasing!

Laura




Shared with: To Grandma's House We Go Wonderful Wednesday

Thursday Favorite Things

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Top Ten Wedding Shower Gifts that No One Else Will Bring!

It's the season for bridal showers and weddings.  Have you ever found yourself feeling a bit awkward when you give or receive a duplicate gift? Do you ever find yourself wondering what to give the bride—especially if this is the sixth wedding you've attended this summer?
We all want to show our friendship and support of the bride with a thoughtful gift, but sometimes it's difficult to know just what to give. Let me help!

These are my top ten wedding shower gifts that no one else will bring.

  1. Ingredients for recipes with recipe cards
  2. Laundry basket filled with homemade cleaners and recipes
  3. Ingredients for homemade laundry soap and recipe card
  4. Knitted or crocheted dishcloths and dish soap
  5. Gas card
  6. Apron
  7. Totes
  8. Embroidered pillowcases
  9. A bag filled with spices... even Aldi spices
  10. A cloth grocery bag filled with flour, sugar, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, vanilla, chocolate chips and my chocolate chip cookie recipe

The key here is that these are practical items that a wife needs.
She's a bride for a day and a wife for a lifetime!

God bless you and the brides in your future.

Laura
Blessed to be a blessing


You may enjoy:





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Nifty Thrifty Sunday

Friday, July 22, 2016

A Thrifty Week at Harvest Lane Cottage #73

Welcome to another thrifty week at Harvest Lane Cottage. I am honored by your visit.  Each week I share my thrifty and frugal projects, ways of saving money, and my blessings from God. 


I am so glad you dropped in for a visit today—or tonight!

♥♥♥
Can you believe the weekend is here again? Can you believe I've written seventy-three of these thrifty week posts? I never imagined when I started just how popular they would be. Well my need to be thrifty hasn't changed, so I'll just keep on sharing my thrifty weeks. It's so neat when you share how you've been thrifty, too. We all need to save money, so any frugal tips are welcome.

I love it when y'all leave comments, so I can meet you and see your blogs, too.

~~~~~
♥♥♥
~~~~~~
Here's my thrifty week:

  • I stayed home nearly all the time!
  • I sent supper leftovers with my husband for lunches.
  • We ate tomatoes and lettuce from our garden.
  • I made plans to reuse some of my children's school books for the next child in line.
  • I received two books, a set of grocery bag carriers, and a pair of sunglasses in the mail for review.
  • My son's friend gave us big bag full of ripe, juicy tomatoes and cucumbers.

Well, that's my thrifty week. 
~~~~~
What are you doing in your home this week?
~~~~~

Focus on your blessings!

ஐღLauraღஐ 
...doing what I can with what I've got
where I am on a short shoestring budget!


~~~~~

You might enjoy reading...

~~~~~

"Resolution One: I will live for God. Resolution Two: If no one else does, I still will."
- Jonathan Edwards, 1703-1758 





You may enjoy:


Thursday, July 21, 2016

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The Perfect Baby Shower Gift ~ Baby Bibs



I sewed baby bibs this week. I had some leftover fabric from a couple of dresses I'd made. I bought some cotton batting with a 40% off coupon at Hobby Lobby and a gift card I got for my birthday. 



I will have gifts for my baby niece, a friend at church who is expecting, and extras for my gift box.

There's something about sewing that is so calming for me. It's as though God meant for me to do it. Sadly, I have neglected it for most of my life because I always thought there was something else I should do. I hope to make it a new habit. A habit of joy.


Laura
Blessed to be a Blessing


Sunday, July 17, 2016

You are Loved. Don't Give Up!



For God so loved YOU 
that He gave His ONLY son
so that when 
YOU believe in Him 
YOU shall be saved.

That's my interpretation of John 3:16 for you this morning.

God's not waiting for you to be perfect.
God's not waiting for you to have your act together.
God's not waiting for you to wash away your own sins.
Those things are what Holy Spirit does best.

Come now.
Humble yourself.
Give your life to Jesus right now.
Just as you are.
Right now.

Even if you've already prayed for salvation,
you still need Jesus right now.

Whatever in your life is causing 
pain or strife or confusion or agony,
give it to Jesus.
Pray and leave it to Him.
He is willing and able to take the weight* of it for you.

Come.
Now is the time to worship.

Be blessed friends.
If there's anything I can pray with you about,
please leave a comment.
If you'd rather I not publish it, please tell me.

Father God, bless these dear ones reading this.
Make their salvation sure.
Show yourself strong and loving in their lives 
no matter what their needs. 
In Jesus Christ's Name by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Amen.






*Matthew 11:8


~~~~~
You might enjoy...
He Gives and Takes Away
~~~~~





Friday, July 15, 2016

A Thrifty Week at Harvest Lane Cottage #72

Welcome to another thrifty week at Harvest Lane Cottage. I am honored by your visit.  Each week I share my thrifty and frugal projects, ways of saving money, and my blessings from God. 


I am so glad you dropped in for a visit today—or tonight!

♥♥♥
Hello again! It's so hard to believe that it's already the weekend again. I'm sure I just wrote about my thrifty week! Life just spins by so fast. Catch all the joy you can my friends. Love God and love others! That pretty much sums up the commandments and the law. My husband continues the search for a vehicle for me. You can read about last week's miraculous provision here. I've put a few things in my Etsy shop and my Ebay this week

I love it when y'all leave comments, so I can meet you and see your blogs, too.

~~~~~
♥♥♥
~~~~~~
Here's my thrifty week:

  • I baked a turkey on Sunday morning while we were at church. I found it in the deep freeze. I must have bought it on sale last Thanksgiving. 
  • I chopped the turkey and mixed it into the gravy. I served this over leftover mashed potatoes Monday evening.
  • I had the leftovers from Monday's meal for lunch on Wednesday.
  • I stayed home nearly all the time!
  • I finished making my baby bibs. They will make great baby gifts! 
  • I borrowed Amy's camera to take photos of items to list on Ebay and Etsy.
  • I sent food with my husband for lunches.
  • I ironed my husband's clothes rather than sending them to the cleaners. $3 a shirt and I don't know how much for pants saved.
  • I mended a bed sheet.
  • I mended two dresses.
  • I received squash from a friend from her garden.
  • We ate tomatoes from our garden.
  • My daughter carried a pbj to the 4 H fair to avoid paying for a fair food lunch.
  • I finished last year's school records and started looking for e-books and curriculum saved on our computer to see if I can use anything this year.
Well, that's my thrifty week. 
~~~~~
What are you doing in your home this week?
~~~~~

Focus on your blessings!
ஐღLauraღஐ 
...doing what I can with what I've got
where I am on a short shoestring budget!
~~~~~

You might enjoy reading...

~~~~~

~~~~~


Tuesday, July 12, 2016

God's Perfect Timing


Recently, I found out that my van has a problem which we will not be able to fix. It renders the van "dead". Once again, I must learn to live without a vehicle.

God was so good. I went to pick up my son at work. The van began to get hot, but didn't overheat. After he got in the van, the red warning light went on. He was able to help me get the van home.

The praise is that I was not alone. I was not on I-44, a major highway when it broke down. We were able to get it home and to the repair shop (where we found out it would be at least $2000 to fix it... it's worth less than $1000 and has other issues). It happened on the last day that my son had to work in another town. My Emily is at camp for a month.

My husband will be able to take my Michael to his new job early and drop him off, then pick him up on the way home daily.

Emily and Michael will not require me to give them rides for the month of July. Amy will just have to stay at home with me. Just a week before, I said I wish I were a stay-at-home mother. I didn't know how soon that would happen!

Now, I will believe God for a replacement.





Monday, July 11, 2016

My Daybook ~ July 11, 2016

Join us at The Simple Woman!
Dear Ladies, 

Hello! 

  It's Monday again! Last week was a difficult week that ended in blessing. God has been so good to us. It's quiet here. I hear my daughter practicing piano and the hum of the air conditioner as I click away on the keyboard. 

Last time I wrote a daybook entry, I mentioned making another bucket list. I did it. Here's my summer bucket list if you've not seen it. The point is not to do everything, it's to keep ideas fresh in my mind so that I do something. ~grin~ It's too easy to be lazy in the summer heat.


Thanks for dropping by! May God grant you the desires of your heart as you delight in Him.

God bless you!
Laura
~~~~~
Tiger and Penny being lazy after a little tussle match
♥♥♥♥♥
For Today... July 11, 2016

Outside my window... Blue skies, 82° with a high in the lower nineties today.  I love the shimmer of the sunshine on the leaves as the breeze blows through the branches of the trees in our circle drive and the trees that surround it. They've grown a lot since we moved here six years ago, so we have a lot of shade now.

I am thinking... how very blessed I am. I have little in the way of money, but God has made it possible to live so much better than one would expect we can. God has done it through gifts from dear friends, kind readers, anonymous gifts, thrifty yard sale and thrift shop purchases, making things over and making do, and selling a few things on Craig's List, Etsy, and Ebay.

I am thankful... that God made me resourceful and creative.

I am wearing... a grey knit skirt and a purple and navy knit blouse. Yes. I wear skirts or dresses 99% of the time. My husband prefers it, and I am more comfortable. The other 1% is when I'm swimming in the creek or outside in very cold weather.

I am creating...  Actually, I just finished the baby bibs I talked of making in my last daybook. I printed off the tutorial way back in 2009 from a blog called Going Sew Crazy. The blog doesn't seem to exist anymore from my searches. If you know otherwise, I'd love you to let me know. It took me long enough to finally use the pattern! My husband told me last night that he likes to see me sewing, because he knows it makes me happy.

I am going... nowhere. Since my van died, I'm homebound. Amazing, isn't it? If you've read my blog for long, you know that I've spent the last three years doing a crazy amount of driving. For the last year or more, I've been pleading the blood of Jesus over my van to keep it going. ~smile~ It did until my son's job in Sarcoxie ended, and my eldest daughter went to camp for a month. It was perfect timing for it to die. Praise you God! I had it as long as I really needed it. Someone gave my son an old pick-up last week, so he has a way to get to work here in town. God is so good! My husband is looking for a replacement for me. I will need it before my Emily starts college next month.

I am wondering... what I will be driving next month. ~smile~

I am reading... Impactivity by Tracy Higley, Old-fashioned Girl by Grace Livingston Hill Louisa May Alcott*, and  A Beauty Refined by Tracie Peterson.
I am hoping... to finish everything up for this school year this week. Then I can think about next year. ~smile~ Yes. I wrote this last time, too. 


A favorite quote for today... 
"Mothers have to be peaceful. There is going to be a lot of stress in families. There will be trials and sorrows and fear. But Mother has to keep the house, and keep her soul quiet and gentle."  
Mrs. Sharon White, The Legacy of Home

A peek into one of my days...  



One of my favorite things...  I think this is just beautiful. 

From the Board Room...  Time to look for a new sewing project.          

A Favorite Link... Laine's Letters written by a Jesus loving wife and mother about seeking God, loving home and family, and making do with what she has.


♥♥♥♥♥

Have a wonderful week!


*Oops! It's in my Kindle with the Grace Livingston Hill books! I thought it sounded different than her regular style of writing! Thanks for the correction Sharon D.. 

Friday, July 8, 2016

A Startling Update!



A Startling Update!
This afternoon, I received a call from a local appliance dealer.
Someone bought and paid for a washing machine for me!
The lady wouldn't tell me who it was, but she gave me a hint. 
She said if I do anything online, say thank you.
I talked with my husband, and we think the blog is the only place it was mentioned online. So...

THANK YOU 
FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART
DEAR ANONYMOUS BLESSER!

You just can't know how this has touched my heart. 
My hands, arms, and back thank you as well!

Praise God from Whom all blessings flow!

ஐღLauraღஐ 
Blessed to be a blessing
...doing what I can with what I've got
where I am on a short shoestring budget!
~~~~~

A Thrifty Week at Harvest Lane Cottage #71

Welcome to another thrifty week at Harvest Lane Cottage. I am honored by your visit.  Each week I share my thrifty and frugal projects, ways of saving money, and my blessings from God. 


I am so glad you dropped in for a visit today—or tonight!

♥♥♥
Hello again! 

It's been a rather challenging week here at the cottage. You may have read last week that my old van has been declared irreparable. It had about 240,000 miles on it—most of which I've put on in the last four years. It's served me well. I prayed over it regularly, and God kept it going longer than the mechanic expected. Now to wait and pray for a replacement.

As you can imagine, it's been a different kind of week here. Fortunately, my son started his full-time summer job, and my Emily is away at camp this month, so I don't have nearly so many places to go as usual. It's been good to be home, but it's an adjustment. 

God knows I need a vehicle before school starts so that Emily will be able to get to her college classes. I'll just have to see what He does.

I love it when y'all leave comments, so I can meet you and see your blogs, too.

~~~~~
♥♥♥
~~~~~~
Here's my thrifty week:

  • Saturday morning I chopped up some little smokies that my dad gave me and an onion and sauteed them. I then mixed them with scrambled eggs and a little leftover shredded cheddar. Yum!
  • Sunday at church a dear family friend gave his old truck to my Michael! Now he has a way to get to work. Praise God! 
  • We ate bean burritos for Sunday lunch. Here's my refried bean recipe. If you don't want to go to the trouble to make beans from scratch, you could try my black bean quickie burritos. Just scroll down, they're in my Thrifty Week #8 post.
  • We ate leftover burritos Tuesday.
  • PBJ for a couple of lunches.
  • My washer broke, so I've been washing 2 loads of laundry per day by hand. Then my daughter puts them in the washer for the spin cycle. It's a great blessing that it still works. I find it takes me about an hour to wash one load of clothes by hand. Two hours a day is a lot, but I don't really have money for the laundromat right now. I'm praying God will make a way to have a working washing machine. In the meantime, the ache in my arm muscles is proof of a good workout. ~grin~
  • I made a list called God Help. I'm going to pray over the list. I need God to fix these nineteen problems that I cannot. Yep! A working van and a working wash machine are on the list. ~grin~

A Startling Update!
This afternoon, I received a call from a local appliance dealer.
Someone bought and paid for a washing machine for me!
The lady wouldn't tell me who it was, but she gave me a hint.
She said if I do anything online, say thank you.
I talked with my husband, and we think the blog is the only place it was mentioned online. So...

THANK YOU
FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART
DEAR ANONYMOUS BLESSER!

You just can't know how this has touched my heart.
My hands, arms, and back thank you as well!

~~~~~
What are you doing in your home this week?
~~~~~

ஐღLauraღஐ 
...doing what I can with what I've got
where I am on a short shoestring budget!
~~~~~

You might enjoy reading...

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Simple Little Reminders... of Grandma Mamie


Mamie Ramsbottom
1922-1915

~ Passion!
~ flying
~ printshops
~ free shopper papers
~ fireflies
~ Que Sera Sera Whatever Will Be Will Be
~ vinyl records
~ printing presses
~ airplanes
~ tadpoles
~ sparklers
~ 4th of July
~ car races
~ carnivals
~ firecrackers
~ menus with advertising on them
~ little towns
~ foggy car windshields
~ little corner grocery stores
~ little diners
~ drive-in movies
~ A & W root beer
~ semi trucks
~ RVs
~ Good Sam Club stickers
~ Black Hills gold
~ line dancing
~ Juicy Fruit gum
~ guys who hold the stop and slow signs for roadwork
~ homemade cocoa
~ homemade chocolate pie
~ soap tied up in a washcloth
~ honey on bread
~ little small town diners
~ typed cafe menus in plastic sleeves
~ dollar movies
~ hot summer days
~ swimming at the beach
~ vinyl signs on cars
~ flea markets
~ flirtation and batting eyelashes


Sunday, July 3, 2016

Time for a Little Break


I'm feeling a bit out of sorts. 
I think I'm going to take a break 
from blogging this week.
I need to spend some extra time in prayer.
I'll be back Friday with another
Thrifty Week post.

Have a wonderful week.

Laura

Saturday, July 2, 2016