Monday, July 7, 2014

This Week's Goals

Congratulations to Lisa on winning the garden seed giveaway!

My plans for last week changed completely when I found out we were having overnight guests, so all of last week's goals were moved to this week.



Gardening:

1. Pick peaches

2. Pick the rest of the plums

3. Harvest grapes

4. Harvest a few cucumbers

5. Figure out how much wood I need for a garden project and purchase the wood and staples to complete the project

6. Do a little weeding

7. Harvest anything else that is ready (beans, green onions, tomatoes, etc.)

Canning:

1. Can peaches

2. Cut and freeze the rest of the plums (for smoothies)

3. Can grape juice from table grapes


Sewing:

1. Start working on Cyrus' birthday gifts and decorations

2. Hem shirt sleeves from my husband. He purchased some new shirts a few weeks ago and the sleeves are a bit too long.

3. Cut out and embroider handkerchief


Blogging:

1. Write giveaway blog post

2. Write two more blog posts

3. Put plum sauce recipe up on the website


Family Goals

1. Celebrate my anniversary

2. Edit and order pictures of my husband and I, as well as the family picture for our wall. Also order 3 other images to put in a frame that I already have. I'll get these from Sam's Club.


20 comments:

  1. I have to shave my dogs,
    Get one dog updated on Rabies shots
    Lots and lots of laundry

    Blanch and freeze rest of carrots, I think I have to batches left to do.
    Freeze some apricots I got on sale.

    Get some sewing done.
    Work on making budget planner.
    I made a homeschool/household planner printing off a calendar and planner pages that I enjoyed last year and wanted for this year then had it bound with a coil binding, I liked it so much I am looking into making myself budget pages to bind for a budget planner, that way I will not have so many loose pages getting mixed up. I have really not liked any of the premade stuff.

    I am sure that is not it, but the stuff that HAS to be done this week plus a few wants:D

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  2. That sounds like a very busy week. I hope you will be able to finish all the things on your list. Have a wonderful week !!

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  3. Well what fun--we share the same anniversary date! We were married July 7, 1978, so today, my husband and I have been married 37 years. I truly enjoy your blog and I have learned much from you. I have always been thrifty, used coupons, a saver, and generally squeezed every penny out of a dollar. My husband and I have weathered many a storm by being frugal during times of plenty to save and prepare for the lean times. We have put four of our five children through college, and the last one is half way through. We have paid for three weddings and we are currently knee deep in preparing for number four daughter's wedding next month. We have always paid our bills in full and on time and are not in debt except for our mortgage. I have really appreciated all your great practical examples of how to further cut down on everyday costs. Thank you for teaching this "old dog" some "new tricks". Happy Anniversary to you and your husband.

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    1. I see that I have a typo of 37 years--we have been married 36 years.

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  4. Happy Anniversary Brandy!

    To Do List:

    Home:
    -Continue to eat from the pantry/freezer. Including using up pre-cooked turkey and whole rabbits that we were given.
    - Turn husbands button up shirt into a tailored button up for me. I love the shirt, but want to alter it to be a little more fitted for myself. I've never done this before. So it will be a good experiment.
    - Take dogs on morning walk three times
    - Call cable company about price (it is absolutely ridiculous)/ cancel if necessary.

    Health:
    -Go to the gym 6 times
    -Drink more water (which will be easy once we are out of tea because I wont be buying any more this month!)
    -Stretch EVERY morning.


    Work/ Finance:
    -Find 5 more items to list on eBay & 5 more books to list on half.com
    -Read in depth about benefits at husband's new job. Most importantly deciding between a high deductible PPO and an HMO.
    -Stick to YNAB budget

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    1. Sometimes if you threaten to cancel a service they'll pony up with a better deal. Beware however that it can also backfire so make sure you're ready to walk away for reals if they don't give you a better deal.

      We cancelled our cable years ago and haven't looked back. Of course our cable was pretty ordinary; they kept making more and more channels premium and it got to the point where it was pretty much all Law and Order re-runs (or at least it seemed that way). What really annoyed me though was that as soon as we called up to cancel they kept throwing deals at us. I said, "We've been with you for 10 years, you've never done a thing about improving our service, and now suddenly you care? Maybe you should treat your existing customers better, to keep them from leaving in the first place." Even though the final deal they offered me was pretty good, by that time I was just so annoyed with them that I cancelled it anyway - and with so many other services available (Netflix, etc.) there's really no reason to keep it.

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    2. I'm right there with you on drinking more water and stretching every morning. I actually set alarms for myself to remind me to drink my water...I still ignore them, but I really need to be more diligent about this! I'm not sure if you have experienced this, but someone told me to ease into this habit. I guess if you try to drink too much too fast, you can end up with leg cramps? All I know is if I can get a liter or two in each day, I'll be better off than before. Another goal is to get to the gym more. I've started trying out different classes, but I haven't been able to get over there this week and probably won't be able to before Thursday. The last class I tried made me so sore, but reiterates the importance of stretching! Good luck to you on your goals! I'll be cheering you on and watching for updates! I have a spreadsheet for budgeting if you'd like to use it. It might be posted on a financial website I write for this week, but if not I can send it to you directly. Take care and God Bless!

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    3. Maydijo- Thanks for the advice. We have a very "involved" cable & internet plan that includes: HD, DVR (in two rooms), On Demand, Sports Packages & the highest speed internet. It started at one rate two years ago. Then after 12 months they tried to raise it and we threw a fit. They lowered it. Then 12 more months passed and they raised it even more. Then we threw a bigger fit and they said they cant lower it. So we are going to cancel. I would personally like to cancel it all together, but the hubby said "no way!!" However, if we cancel for 7 days and then resign in my name I can get the introductory offer that we paid two years ago! How ridiculous that we have to go through that!

      Andrea- Thanks so much for the encouragement. I have some serious range of motion/ flexibility issues that I am WAY too young to have. I go to the gym 5-6 days a week and maybe stretch half that, and that is no good. I try to drink water more, but it is generally all or nothing. Either I drink a gallon or practically none. Its a work in progress though.

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    4. Yeah, I hate how companies you've been with for a while just keep raising the price, when new customers get a discount - we just changed home insurance companies this year for that very reason. Sorry you'll be without internet for a week. I can live without TV; but going without internet is soul-crushing!!!

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    5. But just think of how much you'll get done since you're not online!

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    6. The worst part is when you get back on-line and discover the world functions just fine without your on-line presence, and nobody's been trying like mad to e-mail you with The World's Biggest News Ever. But thank goodness, even after a week's delay, that Nigerian prince with the $3 million to get out of the country still needs your help!

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  5. I was happy when I bought gasoline and discovered it had been a little over a month since I had to buy any. Of course, my children are grown up and I don't work outside the home... still that was nice. The garden is beginning to really produce now. I canned 32 quarts of green beans, 8 pints of "bread and butter" pickles, dehydrated some zucchini slices, made natural yeast whole wheat bread, cooked everything from scratch (as usual). Being frugal has been a way of life for a long time.

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  6. Dear Miss Brandy and readers,

    I am still working on my goals from last week. I changed them a bit-crossed off the ones I completed and added a few new ones! I am not going to repost my goals here since I posted on my blog. I am lazy this week I'm afraid.

    I did add one goal that I started. Because my budget is so tight I am trying to do a series like Miss Brandy's series "A Gift A Day". I was going to forgo any new clothes for my family even clothes at thrift stores and/or garage sales. I still have medical bills I am paying off for my daughter's illness and now have a child in college (although most of her big budget items are covered by scholarships). I knew that we (child and I) would have to cover some expenses but I did not anticipate all of them. These is a $50 lab fee, $100 parking permit, and books are more than we thought. In addition, my daughter got a new car so car insurance has increased. My daughter will be assisting with car expenses but I want her to concentrate on her studies as well.

    Back to my back to school clothes issue, I decided that I would try for one week to make one new piece of clothing either to enhance outfits we had or create a new outfit or item. If I am able to find the time I will continue the project. My thoughts are if my family can eat from the pantry to save money, the why can't we find/make clothes from materials in the house to keep costs down..

    That is my big goal for the this week and next week. I named my project: Frugal Back To School Clothes: A Project A Day. I will probably feature more of my clothes that my kids because they prefer not to be featured in my blog. I try to respect their privacy. I have to wear professional type clothes for my job.

    Miss Brandy, thank you for the inspiration for both the Gift A Day series and the motivation to use supplies, re-purposed materials, and imagination to take care of my family's needs in a cost effective manner. One does not necessarily have to give up things to be frugal just sometimes think outside the box.

    Blessings to all this warm summer. Blessings to Miss Brandy for sharing her creativity, crafting, and care for us as her readers.

    Anna

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  7. Anna, I always enjoy your updates/comments. I'll try to stop by your blog over the next few weeks and see how your Frugal Back to School Clothes projects work out. I'll also try to remember to leave a comment there so you know I've been by. And all those "fees" at college/university...grrrr..or sigh...or something in between those! I love how you attempt to tackle it all without grumbling or complaining and a good attitude. *thumbs up* Heidi

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    1. Thank you! You made my day. Yes, college is expensive. I think there are over $800 dollars in extra fees. At the moment I (we, daughter and I) have enough saved to cover the expenses. I need to figure out how to pay for the books now! I have several more weeks to figure it out or work an extra job. My family just needs to be very, very frugal for a couple more months.

      I looked at my clothes series and had to laugh at my "models". I did not realize how humorous they looked until I took a second look. (Laughing at myself!)

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  8. Chegg.com you can rent college textbooks. Check Amazon and the chain bookstores also rent college textbooks. Save a small fortune that way.

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  9. So far July has not been a good month for us. On June 30 my youngest grandson (who lives with us) fell on his bike and broke his elbow. The good news is that Evan does not require surgery to repair. He will be in a cast most of the summer but that is better than surgery by far. Then on July 4th I had pain in my side. It was an awful pain and would not ease no matter what I tried. On July 5th after an awful night of pain I went to the 'after hours' clinic in our town. After tests I was sent to the hospital ER for scans. An hour later I was in surgery. I had kidney stone. I spent 2 nights in the hospital. I feel weak as a kitten. We have had many sandwiches and soup meals. I am just now feeling well enough to get up and around. It will be a few weeks before I am normal. My husband and older grandson have been a big help. Thank goodness for meals in the freezer too.
    Hope everyone has a good week. God bless

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  10. Good morning! How inspiring to see the abundance from your garden! I also love the antique frame with Ivory's picture. I remember my Dad purchasing a frame like that at a garage sale when I was a kid. It had many layers of paint on it, but he recognized it as a treasure, stripped all the paint off & stained it. So beautiful & brings back great memories to see one on your table.
    I also have to thank you again for yet another worthwhile suggestion. This past week, after seeing your post about keeping a bucket under the A/C spout, I tried this trick, too. I've walked past this little spout a million times & have occasionally seen drips come out, but never thought to collect the water. After setting the bucket under that spout, I can't get over the amount of water that dripped out! I wasn't watching it closely & some was spilling out when I went to check on it. We also continue to save water from the shower. My husband purchased a large utility bucket from Lowe's so we can get as much of it as possible. He has started to see the value in collecting the water & is on board which I appreciate. Had a wonderful rain storm yesterday (finally!). I feel very blessed to say that we sustained little damage from it as our square mile area was noted as being the most severely hit (trees down, roof tiles blown off, etc.). We had no trees come down & only two roof tiles were "moved". They weren't blown off, but did lift a little. My husband was able to climb up & push them back into place. He secured them with a couple of long nails. He noticed our neighbors had a few lift & some that had blown off so secured theirs as well while he had the extension ladder out. Fortunately for them, the tiles that came completely off did not break so my husband was able to put them back on & they didn't have to purchase new ones. Unfortunately about 5 bean plants were uprooted because they were wrapped around a trellis that did get thrown around a little. Our tomatoes are fine, though!
    Hubby is working from home today saving lots of gas! He commutes 30 miles one way to work so this is a great gas saver (plus it's just nice to have him home). He is taking care of a few "aftermath" details on the roof for us and our neighbors. Something to do with cement and securing the tiles better, I think...
    Did not stay out of the stores last week, but stuck to fresh produce that was on a good sale & a couple of gallons of milk. Made yogurt with the milk I pulled off the top to replace with water as well as several loaves of bread & pizza dough.
    Kept driving to a minimum with the exception of driving downtown to the Homeschool Convention two days. This year we were allowed to bring in outside food & drink so I packed a lunch, a snack and my water bottle. Stuck to my list for curricula & used an old school notebook of my daughter's to take notes in. Since I used the back side of some of her notes, I three-hole punched the side my notes are on & put everything in a 2-pocket folder with the clasps down the middle. My notes are clipped in the middle of the folder & my brochures, etc. from the conference fit in the pockets. Now I have everything in one place for future reference (& some Algebra in case I feel like I'm getting rusty!).
    At any rate, I am excited to see everyone's frugal accomplishments again this week. With Brandy's permission, I was given permission by one of the speakers at the homeschool conference to share her website "creditsbeforecollege.com". I learned so much from her & am so optimistic that we can help our children get a college degree without debt by utilizing strategies while they're in high school to earn college credit for a fraction of the cost. Check it out! God Bless!

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  11. My goals this week are to stay off Facebook (so far so good) and to can as many apricots as I can before we leave for our camping trip). My fifth batch since yesterday is in the canner, and I've done two dehydrator loads of fruit leather. My feet hurt and I want to stop, but I keep reminding myself how much we will enjoy the fruit over the winter.

    I also have to make bread and then fill some jars with my dry goods to take (along with some other canned foods), for decorations-up to the church on saturday for our annual "Bread and Milk Supper".

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