Tuesday, September 30, 2008

September 2008 Independence Summary

September 2008 Independence Summary

Planting, Harvesting & Preserving
Harvesting Carrots, Tomatoes, Potatoes, Peppers, Pole Beans from the Garden

Strawberry Jam - 7 Jelly Jars
Grape Jelly - 7 Jelly Jars
Orange Juice Jelly - 7 Jelly Jars
Banana Jam - 7 Jelly Jars
Dill Pickles- 8 Quarts
Sauerkraut- 10 Quarts
Steak Sauce- 3 pints
Tomatoes- 5 Quarts Tomato Sauce
4 Quarts Spiced Tomato Sauce
Matt's Salsa- 2 Quarts

Strawberries- 6 Quarts
Blueberries- 2 Pints
Green Beans- 3 pints
Carrots- 7 pints

Dried Veggie Seasoning- 1 pint
Beef Jerky- 1 pint
Tomatoes- 5 Jelly Jars
Candy- Loupe - (Dried Candied Cantaloupe)
Green Peppers

Preparedness & Planning
*Level Billing for Energy Bills
*Matt made Fishing Kits, Snare Kits and Fire Starting Kits for Survival Packs
*Survival Skills Test when Hurricane Ike came to town and left us without power for 27 Hours.
*Replenishing supplies used during Hurricane Ike.

Managing household & reserves
*Rotating Stockpiled Foods- Eating the replenishing.
*Got more shelving for storage in the basement.
*Organized food supply on new shelving

Keeping it Local
*Eating food from our Garden
*Buying from Local Farmers and Farmers Markets

Learned New Skill or Tried Something New
*First Worm Compost Harvest
*Made Candy- Loupe - (Dried Candied Cantaloupe)
*Canning Class- Apples
*Canned Tomatoes

Misc. & Handcrafting -
*Researching and reading articles and books on survival, homesteading and back to basic skills.
*Incorporating new skills, practices and methods into day to day life.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Country Fair

Yesterday we went to the Country Fair at Carriage Hill Metro Park.
Here are some of the pics.......

Wind Mill and Barn

Wind Mill

Draft Horses

Chickens in their Pen

Little Girl in a Bonnet

Sunday, September 28, 2008

What I am reading

In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto by Michael Pollan

If you are interested in this or any of the other books featured in the What I am reading posts, Please see the sidebar for my Amazon.com Favorites. You can purchase a copy of the book there!

Dangerous Cake


1 coffee mug
4 Tbsp. cake flour (plain, not self-rising)
4 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. cocoa
1 egg
3 Tbsp. milk
3 Tbsp. oil
Small splash of vanilla
3 Tbsp. chocolate chips, optional

~Add dry ingredients to mug, mix well with a fork.
~Add egg, mix thoroughly.
~Pour in milk and oil and vanilla, mix well.
~Add chips, if using.
~Put mug in microwave, and cook for three minutes on 1000 watts.
~Cake will rise over top of mug--do not be alarmed!
~Allow to cool a little; tip onto a plate if desired.

Eat! (This can serve two if you want to feel slightly more virtuous.)

***And WHY is this the most dangerous cake recipe in the world? Because now we are all only five minutes away from chocolate cake any time of the day or night!!!***

Saturday, September 27, 2008

How to Make a Hand-Powered Washing Machine

I have got my clothes line to hang my clothing out to dry. But I was looking for an idea on how to wash the clothing without electricity.

Mind you I won't be doing this everyday........just in case of emergencies where we have no power.


How to Make a Hand-Powered Washing Machine:

You can make a washing machine from a toilet plunger with a rubber suction cup, and a tall pail with cover. The pail should be about twice as big around as the cup on the plunger. Make a small hole in the cover of the pail to put the handle of the toilet plunger through. Fill the pail with soapy water and clothing items. Put the cover on it with the plunger inserted through the cover. Raise the plunger above the water in the pail and lower it with quick up and down strokes. The plunger should come above the level of water on the up-stroke but should not hit the bottom of the pail on the down-strokes. Wait a few seconds between strokes, then repeat as needed.

Friday, September 26, 2008

How to Make Tomato Sauce

How to make Tomato Sauce

What you need:
Tomatoes, cored
Bottled Lemon Juice
Dried Herbs (Optional)

For thin sauce you will need an average of 35 pounds of tomatoes to produce 7 Quarts. For thick sauce you will need and average of 46 pounds of tomatoes to yield 7 Quarts. General guideline for estimating weight is 3 medium sized tomatoes equal 1 pound.

1. Prepare Canner, Jars and Lids

2. Wash and Sort Tomatoes. Remove any bruised or discolored product. Quarter 6 Tomatoes and place in large stainless steel saucepan. Bring to boil over medium high heat. Using a Potato Masher, crush tomatoes to release juices. While maintaining a boil and stirring to prevent burning, quarter additional tomatoes, adding them to the saucepan as you work. Make sure mixture continues to boil vigorously while you add, stir and crush the remaining tomatoes. When all the tomatoes have been added, boil, stirring occasionally for about 10 minutes.

3. Working in Batches, press the tomatoes through a fine sieve or food mill to remove skins and seeds. Discard skins and seeds. BEWARE: THIS IS THE MESSY PART!!

4. Returning mixture to saucepan and bring to boil over high heat stirring frequently. Reduce heat to medium high and boil until volume is reduced by 1/3 for thin sauce and by half for a thicker sauce.

5. Before filling each jar add 2 tbsp of lemon juice and 1 tsp canning salt to each quart jar. (Note: measurement change if you use smaller or bigger jars).

6. If using, Add dried herbs. Start with 1/2 tsp per jar. You can adjust per your liking. I added dried onions, dried green peppers, crushed red pepper, basil and oregano.

7. Ladle hot sauce into prepared jars. REMEMBER: Hot Sauce, Hot Jars and Hot Lids! Fill Jars leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe rim and center lid on jar. Apply screw top

8. Place Jars in Canner. Bring to boil and process 40 minutes for Quart Size Jars. (Times change with bigger or smaller jars.)

9. Remove Canner Lid. Wait 5 minutes, then remove jars, cool and store.

I made 5 Quart Jars of Plain Tomato Sauce and 4 Quarts of Spiced Tomato Sauce

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Laundry List

I have been asked to participate in another blog.

Go check it out at :http://blog.laundrylist.org/

If you hang your clothing out to dry.....join us!

Amanda got the Box

Amanda got her Box. Go to her Blog to see what was in my giveaway box!


Survival Checklist for your Car

Survival Checklist for your Car

You never know where you will be when a crisis occurs. Keep a box of these basic supplies in your car to help sustain your family in case you are stranded on the Road.

* Local Maps, Road Atlas or GPS Unit

*Writing Supplies- Pencils, Pens, notebook

*Food- dried fruit, snacks, cookies, protein bars

*2 gallons of bottle water

*Mess Kit- Cups, plate and utensils

*Sanitation supplies- toilet paper, moist towelettes, garbage bags

*Hand Sanitizer

*Duct Tape

*Cellphone Car Charger

*Clothes- sweater, waterproof jacket, hat, sturdy shoes

* First Aid Kit- bandages, antibiotic ointment, antiseptic, aspirin, antidiarrheal medicine, medical tape

*Fire Extinguisher

* Jumper Cables

*Light Sticks or Flares

* Flashlight

* Towline for hauling or towing

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Feed Me!

Times are tough here in the Barber House. Not only from the tough economy that we are all facing but we will be without my income for October.

So we are pinching pennies and saving dimes. But we still gotta eat!!

I was looking on line for some frugal recipes. I was finding some good ones. I found some bad ones.

I wanted ask for help from all my Blog Buddies. Relax........ I ain't asking for money!!

All I am asking is for your best frugal recipe.

You can post it in comments or link me to it.

Either way, I thank you for your help!

Garden at 122 Days

Would you believe that I forgot my Camera?!?!?!

So there won't be any pics for the Garden at 122 Days. But here is a pic of this week's harvest. Hubs wants to make Salsa. I think I got enough to make a nice batch.

The Garden is slowing down. The Tomatoes and Peppers are still producing. One of the Pole Bean Beds has some blossoms and some fresh beans growing. On the other bean bed, I tore out all the old and dying plants. So out of the 9 Beds, 5 are still producing.

We are working on preparing the empty beds for fall. And making plans for next year's Garden.

How to make Stuffed Peppers

Hubs wanted me to make Stuffed Peppers with some Peppers we picked from the Garden.
My Mom and Grandma used to make Stuffed Peppers all the time. Looking at the recipe I thought it looked pretty easy and really pretty frugal to make. So I thought I would give it a try.........
How to make Stuffed Peppers
11 ounces ground beef (I used Sausage)
1/3 cup uncooked long grain white rice
2/3 cup water
4 green bell peppers
1-1/3 (8 ounce) cans tomato sauce (I used Tomato Soup)
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
salt and pepper to taste
3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Remove and discard the tops, seeds, and membranes of the bell peppers. Arrange peppers in a baking dish with the hollowed sides facing upward. (Slice the bottoms of the peppers if necessary so that they will stand upright.)

Place the rice and water in a saucepan, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and cook 20 minutes. In a skillet over medium heat, cook the beef until evenly browned.

Fresh Local Meat by

Landes Farms

9476 Haber Road

Clayton, Ohio

In a bowl, mix the browned beef, cooked rice, 1 can tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Spoon an equal amount of the mixture into each hollowed pepper. Mix the remaining tomato sauce and Italian seasoning in a bowl, and pour over the stuffed peppers.

Bake 1 hour in the preheated oven, basting with sauce every 15 minutes, until the peppers are tender.

I thought these were good but I am not a fan of green peppers. Next time I think I will make them with Red Peppers.

Oh........Hubs loved them!!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Ahhhhh.... The Memories........

This picture of Markie Post from back in the day reminded me of the '80's.

You see.......this was my hairstyle of choice back then. I remember running to my stylist with her pic and saying " I want my hair like this." That was back when Mullets were cool.

Ahhhhhh....... the Memories.........................

This is the view.....

This is the view from my office window.
I love the pond and the new trees the home owners association planted.
Look......one of them is turning a pretty fall color.

Brand Name vs. Generic

Any one who is frugal minded has tried store brands or generic brands. I found an article which compares Name Brands against Generic or Store Brands.
Article by http://www.walletpop.com/

Brand Name Sandwich Cookies
Brand: Double Stuf Oreos
Price: $4.79
Size: 1 lb. 2 oz.
Review: Moist, chocolatey and delicious

Generic Sandwich Cookies
Brand: Kroger Double-Filled Kid O’s Cookies
Price: $2.39
Review: Passable, but harder and not as much chocolate flavor.
Verdict: Kroger's are OK, if you don't have a real Oreo sitting next to the Kroger cookie. Once you do, however, you'll see how much more moist and chocolatey the real Oreo is.

Brand Name Wheat Crackers
Brand: Wheat Thins
Price: $4.29
Size: 10 oz
Review: Nice salty, wheat flavor and satisfying crunch.

Generic Wheat Crackers
Generic: Kroger Wheat Crisps
Price: $1.24
Size: 10 oz.
Review: Taste just like Wheat Thins, but contain less salt.
Verdict: Kroger's crisps are virtually indistinguishable from Wheat Thins. Both have no trans fat or cholesterol. Wheat Thins have two and half times as much salt as the Kroger crackers. Maybe Wheat Thins are a little more crispy, but certainly not $3 worth of crispy.

Brand Name Vegetable Soup
Brand: Muir Glen Organic Garden Vegetable Soup
Price: $3.69
Size: 19 oz.
Review: Plentiful vegetables and no greasy orange spill on top makes this canned soup stand out.

Generic Vegetable Soup
Generic: Whole Foods 365 Organic Vegetable Soup
Price: $1.69
Size: 14.5 oz.
Review: Virtually the same as brand name, but carrots were a little smaller.
Verdict: Tie -- and tie goes to the store brand because it's cheaper. The soups seemed just about identical. The carrots in the Muir Glen were slightly bigger, but they both had the same generous amounts of green beans, peas, carrots, celery and potato. Neither had that fluorescent orange oil spill on top.

Brand Name Lime Tortilla Chips
Brand: Tostitos Restaurant Style with a Hint of Lime Tortilla Chips
Price: $3.69
Size: 13 oz.
Review: Tostitos is a light, crispy chip with a delicious and addictive lime taste.

Generic: Whole Foods 365 Organic White Corn Tortilla Chips Cilantro & Lime
Price: $2.79
Size: 13 oz.
Review: Heavy, bland and lacking in lime.
Verdict: Tostitos blows the generic away. The Whole Foods chip is so heavy I had to recheck the bag to see I didn’t inadvertently buy a baked chip. I couldn't really taste any lime. I know they face added pressure for meeting organic standards, but this kind of bland fare gives organics a bad name.

Brand Name Granola
Brand: Nature's Path Organic PomegranPlus Granola with Cherries
Price: $4.39
Review: I could barely find the cherries, let alone detect any pomegranate essence, in Nature's Path cereal.

Generic Granola
Generic: Whole Foods 365 Organic Fruit & Nut Granola
Price: $3.49
Review: Lots of tasty fruits and nuts.
Verdict: The Whole Foods cereal is actually better. It had fruit (mainly just raisins but also cranberries) and nuts (both pecans and almonds!) that you could easily spot and taste.

Do you have a favorite store brand or generic brand? Tell us about it!!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Gurney's Harvest Moon Sale

Harvest Moon Sale - SAVE up to 50% Sitewide!

Gurney’s invites you to celebrate the Harvest Moon with special savings on our website. Take up to 50% off every purchase while the Harvest Moon is shining this week! You’ll save on everything you could want for fall planting – flower bulbs, shrubs, late fall and winter crops and much more!

Vegetable Seeds, Vegetable Plants, Fruit Trees, Small Fruit, Perennials, Flower bulbs, Shrubs

Take advantage of the Harvest Moon Sale Now!
Hurry – this Sale ends October 1st, or while supplies last!

Prairie Blue Eyes Daylily
Item #66094Was: $6.95 ea. SALE: ONLY $3.48
SAVE 50%

Golden Sedum
Item #70084Was: $14.95 for 6 SALE: ONLY $7.48
SAVE 50%

Dwarf Venous Orange Fruit Tree
Item #13885Was: $12.95 ea. SALE: ONLY $6.48
SAVE 50%

Imperial Purple Butterfly Bush
Item #74053Was: $12.95 SALE: ONLY $6.48
SAVE 50%

Click the Gurney's Link in the sidebar to be taken to their site.

It's on the way......


Your Prize box is on the way!

I will let Amanda tell the rest of you what was in the box.

Check her Blog soon for the answer! http://thisreluctantsoil.blogspot.com/

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Stockpiling Food

You need to start stockpiling food
You can do a lot if you start early. Unfortunately, “early” might have been yesterday. Now we're way past early, and you need a reasonable plan to get food supplies that will store well and don't cost too much.You've probably already realized that buying up extra cans of soup at the grocery store is a really stupid way to spend your preparedness money. You need a better plan. Every $10 you spend at the store might feed a person for a few days. You need more leverage, where you can spend $10 and feed a person for a few weeks.

Buy extra, use FIFO

Go ahead and buy more food than normal when you are out shopping, and set it aside. Use the “first in, first out” rule to eat your older supplies first. Keep rotating your supplies so you never abandon food way in the back.

Buy ingredients, not prepared foods
Ingredients such as salt, honey, oatmeal and wheat will last a lot longer than prepared foods like TV dinners, cereals, and food mixes. Naturally, as you purchase food ingredients, you will want to practice actually using them!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Chris and Eve's Wedding

My Godson got married tonight. It was a lovely ceremony and a wonderful reception. I am so happy for Chris and Eve. I wish them many, many happy years together.

The picture is of the take home favors for guests. They are Caramel Apples!! The theme was Fall in Love. Beautiful Fall themes and colors. And you know how I love me some Fall!

The Brides Mother did all the planning, decorations and favors. And let me tell you.........she did a great job! This woman should go into business. Everything was beautiful and professional looking. It was a lovely evening.

Congratulations Chris and Eve!!

Farmhouse Wares

Farmhouse Decor and Gifts with Sustainable Style


Friday, September 19, 2008

What's for Dinner- Marinated Chicken with Tomato Fruit Salsa

Grilled Marinated Chicken with Tomato-Fruit Salsa

Hands On: 30 minutes
Total: 2 hours 30 minutes
Makes: 6 servings (1 breast with 1/3 cup salsa each)

1/4 cup Ketchup
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup honey
2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce (I use lite version)
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
6 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
Non Stick Spray
1 can (14.5 oz each) Diced Tomatoes, drained or fresh tomatoes from your Garden!
1 cup finely chopped fresh pineapple, mango or paapaya (or combination)
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

1. Combine ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, honey, soy sauce and garlic in large resealable plastic bag; blend well. Pound chicken with meat mallet to even out thickness for more even cooking. Add chicken to bag; seal. Turn to coat evenly with ketchup marinade. Refrigerate 2 hours or overnight.
2. Spray cold grill and utensils with grilling spray. Preheat grill to medium heat. Combine drained tomatoes, pineapple, onion and cilantro in small bowl; set aside. Remove chicken from bag; discard marinade.
3. Grill chicken about 5 minutes on each side, or until no longer pink in center. Serve each breast with salsa.

Cook's Tips
Chicken may be cooked in large nonstick skillet. Spray cold skillet with cooking spray. Place over medium heat for 1 minute. Add chicken and cook about 4 minutes on each side, or until no longer pink.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

A visitor in the Garden

Look who was visiting our Garden!
A Wooly Worm!
( I need to look up what it means when a wooly worm is all one color..........any body know??)

Survival Checklist for the Home

Survival Checklist for the Home

This is a good basic list of supplies to have in your home to keep your family save and health for at least 3 Days- and be useful during any clean up.

*Window and Roof sealing materials -plastic sheeting, tarps, duct tape

*Change of Clothing - Long pants, long sleeve shirts, rain jackets, sturdy boots or shoes

*Food- canned or dry goods. Food for any Pets

*Bottled Water- 3 Days supply (1 gal. per person per day)

*Manual Can Opener

*Lantern, Candles and Matches

*Flashlight with Batteries ( Be sure to stock extra Batteries too)

*NOAA Weather Radio ( battery and/or hand cranked)

*Dust Masks

*Fire Extinguishers

*Heavy Gloves


*First Aid Kits- Pain Relievers, anti diarrheal medication, bandages, scissors, tweezers, insect repellent, plints, medical taop iodine, needle and thread

*First Aid Manual

*Disinfectant, Hand Sanitizer

*Toilet Paper, Bucket

* Hand and Power Tools- Generator, fuel, chain saw, rake, shovel, buckets, hose, hatchet, knife, hammer, broom drill/driver circular saw, charged backup batteries for tools

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Martha's Contest

Martha is having a Blog Contest.......................


Our Survival

The remnants of Hurricane Ike went over our area on Sunday. The Storm that rolled through had Category One force winds. There wind gust from 35 mph to 89 mph. Reporters are calling it a "Dry Hurricane" because we got all the wind but no rain. It was the weirdest thing I have seen in a long time. The wind was so strong it was tearing leaves off the trees and just shredding them. The air was full of debris and the trees behind our house were bending and swaying in an alarming way.

Our power went out about 3 pm on Sunday. The Storm died down around 7 pm. We did a check of the house and we were blessed not to have any damage. There are many houses around us that have shingles torn off their roofs, siding and gutters pulled from the house. So we were lucky.

We turned on the Radio and Matt's portable radio from work and started hearing about all the damages and issues in the area. There were more than 250,000 people without power in the area. 2 Million people without power in the State of Ohio. We realized we were in an actual survival situation not just a few hours without power. From there ,we went into survival mode. I am pleased to report that all the preparations we have made, all the kits we put together, all the food we stored came in very handy during the 27 Hours we were without power. We were lucky to have water and have hot water because our water heater is gas powered.

We decided that we were not going to go out unless necessary. Not only to keep the traffic off the streets but we were concerned with civil unrest too. And sadly were were right......it wasn't long before there were reports of robbing, vandals, loiters and fighting. This is what happens when you are unprepared. If you do not have the essential survival items in your home you are putting you and your family in danger. Who would have ever thought there would have been a Hurricane in Ohio. But it happened. Weird stuff is happening all around us. Prepare your family and your home for the worst. (stepping down off the soap box now........)

Around 9 pm Matt got a call from his Grandmother. She was finally able to reach us after her phone service was down for a few hours. She has COPD and takes 2 breathing treatments a day. She was late for one of her treatments and was starting to have difficulty breathing. She needed power to take a breathing treatment and she had none. Matt packed up and went over to his Grandma's. I stayed home to watch the house. He was able to get her a breathing treatment by having a power inverter that takes power from your car battery and converts it so you can plug in household items and use the power from your car battery. We are going to suggest to Grandma that she purchases one of these inverters to have on hand in case of emergencies. Grandma was not prepared for an emergency so Matt had to go out....find a open store and get her some supplies. Luckily it was early enough in the emergency that there were supplies left. He got Grandma squared away and came home.

Then we just settled in for a long night. We both didn't sleep well. We were up late listening to the radios and up early the next morning. Our biggest concern at this point was what to do with our food in the refrigerator and freezer. We were discussing our options when Our Neighbors next door came over to check up on us and offered us use of their generator. We plugged in the Refrigerator for a couple hours and then the Freezer for a couple hours. So that Crisis was taken care of. Matt helped them with some issues they were having at their house and then we settled in.......... getting ready for another long night.

Then our Friends Bob and Jeany called and they had no power and no water because they were on well water with an electrical pump. They wanted to take shower and get some water. So we decided to have a "We don't have power, let's eat up all the food that is going to go bad " Party. They came over and another friend without power came over too. They all brought food from home that were at risk of going bad. We had weird combinations of foods and meats but it was food! We cooked and warmed food on our charcoal grill. We ate, hung out in the candle light and played board games. Then the power came back on! Whoooo Hooo. You don't realize how much your rely on power until you have none.

All in all Matt and I fared well in our little Survival Mode Trial. There was really nothing that we thought of that we needed but didn't have. Which makes me happy. That tells me we did a good job preparing. Now we just have to restock what we used during the Storm.

Since then ,we have become Shower Central. Several of our Friends have come over and taken showers at our house since they are still without power. We might even have some guests here soon. My Mom and Dad are without power and might come and stay with us for a couple days.

I did not venture too far from the house during and after the windstorm here in Ohio, but Susie Q did! She has some good pictures of the damages and images from around the around the Dayton area. http://rabbitruncottage.blogspot.com/

If you want to see more pictures of the area........visit www.daytondailynews.com

All the damages here are nothing compared to what happened in Texas. I can't even imagine going through that level of devastation. My thoughts and prayers are with everyone who was affected there.

Happy Anniversary


We have been through a lot in these 4 years. And here we are still in love.

I love you and I love the life that we have made together.

Happy Anniversary!


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Trees and Barn

What I am Reading

Crisis Preparedness Handbook: A Complete Guide to Home Storage and Physical Survival
by Jack Spigarelli

If you are interested in this or any of the other books featured in the What I am reading posts, Please see the sidebar for my Amazon.com Favorites. You can purchase a copy of the book there!


Looking for something on Amazon? Use my search box to find it.

You find what you are looking for and I get a portion of the sale!

Monday, September 15, 2008

What's new

What is new with me??????

27 hours with out power from a "Dry Hurricane" in Ohio

That is what is new with me.

Will share more later.........

Shop at Gurney's

Click the link to shop at Gurney's:

Gurney's 125 x 125

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Kitty Cat

I saw the cutest Kitty Cat at my Canning Class on Saturday...................

See..... I told you he was cute!!!

Friday, September 12, 2008

What to buy at the Dollar Stores

What to Buy at the Dollar Stores:

Hand Sanitizer
Brand name Purell hand sanitizer costs $4.87 for 237 mL bottle with a pump, while the dollar store brand comes in a 236 mL pump bottle for $3.87 less.

Band Aids
The larger, patch type band-aids are 20 cents each at the dollar store, while brand-name ones are about 33 cents each.

School Lunches
Places like the Dollar Store make it easy to shop for groceries on a budget by stocking a wide variety of food items, including fresh produce. The grocery stores sell Jell-O brand instant puddings for $1.19 a package. The dollar store has instant pudding mix at 2 packages for $1, a savings of $1.38 on two packages.

Lunch Bags and Backpacks
Family Dollar is featuring Disney backpacks or lunch bags at $6 each. Meanwhile, Dollar General is offering licensed lunch boxes in assorted styles for $5 each and backpacks in assorted styles for $8 each.

Warm Socks
Socks are one item of clothing that you can save a lot of money on by shopping at a dollar store. Dollar Tree is featuring kids and adult sizes in solids and patterns for $1 a pair.

Hearty Meals
On a chilly fall night, nothing feels better than a stomach full of a warm, home cooked meal. A 23 oz. can of Primo spaghetti sauce that sells for $1 at the Dollar Store, costs $1.49 at the grocery store. For a dollar, you can also get Hunts Manwich in the 14 oz. tin which sells for $1.79 at the supermarket, and two 10 oz cans of Heinz tomato soup.

Dorms and Apartments
You can find everything from dishes and silverware, to trash cans and cleaning supplies at your local dollar store.

School Supplies
Staples has 200-page exercise books for $1.96 each compared to the Dollar Store's 140-page notebook for $1. That means you're paying 96 cents more for an extra 60 pages at Staples.

Battery Operated Cell Phone Charger
Need to charge your cell phone on the go? Easy -- a battery-operated cell phone charger. The Dollar Store has them in two different models, one that powers most Sprint, Samsung, Sanyo and LG phones and one that powers most Motorola and Nokia phones. Each one comes with four different adapters and you can try each of the different plugs from the back of the package before you plunk down your dollar.

Garbage Bags
Twelve 20 x 22" garbage bags cost 8 cents per bag at Dollarama. The same size garbage bag is sold at Costco for $11.49 for 100 bags or 11 cents each.

Lip Balm
You could buy a tube of Blistex at Wal-mart for $2.43 -- or you could always get a tube at a dollar store for $1. It's up to you.

I also buy make-up, hand soap, rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, storage bags, cleaning supplies, candles and more at my dollar stores.

What is your favorite Dollar Store buy?

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

What's for Dinner

Capellini Caprese

Prep Time:10 min
Total Time:25 min
Makes:4 servings, 1-1/2 cups each

1/2 lb. capellini or spaghetti, uncooked
1/2 cup Italian Dressing
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups halved grape or cherry tomatoes
1 cup Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
1/3 cup fresh basil, finely sliced

COOK pasta as directed on package.

MEANWHILE, heat dressing in large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic; cook and stir 2 min. Add tomatoes; cook 5 min. or until heated through, stirring occasionally.

DRAIN pasta. Add to tomato mixture; mix lightly. Sprinkle with cheese and basil.
Be creative with add in’s. Tonight I am adding sliced black olives and leftover grilled chicken

Cutest Blog

Cute Backgrounds for your Blog!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

What I am reading

The Preacher's Daughter by Beverly Lewis

If you are interested in this or any of the other books featured in the What I am reading posts, Please see the sidebar for my Amazon.com Favorites. You can purchase a copy of the book there!


Looking for something on Amazon? Use my search box to find it.

You find what you are looking for and I get a portion of the sale!

And the Winner is.................

Thanks to all those who entered my Giveaway Contest.

I entered all the names into my Randomizer.....Ok....not really. I put each name on a piece of paper and threw them all into a hat. Then Hubs picked a name out of the hat.

The lucky winner of my Giveaway is................... Amanda at http://thisreluctantsoil.blogspot.com/

Please contact me with your name and address and your package will be in the mail soon! shelt28 at yahoo.com

Thanks again to all that entered. This was fun....we will have to do it again real soon!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Food Transportation

Transportation is the key to food.

Without transportation, farmers can’t get their crops to the wholesalers or food processing facilities. Food is heavy, generally speaking, and it requires trucks and trains to move it around— a literal ARMY of trucks and trains, weaving their way from city to city, optimized and prioritized by computers. If the computers freeze, the whole transportation infrastructure will shut down. Transportation also depends heavily on fuel. In a time of crisis there may be little or no fuel to use.

How would you feed your Family if you could not run to the Grocery Store to get food?

Grow your own!

Buy Local!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Canning Class at Carriage Hill Metro Park

Canning Class at Carriage Hill Metro Park
Subject: Applesauce

Our Teacher......
not only does she teach us how to can, she shows us how they did it in the 1800's

Peeling the Apples

Running the cooked apples through the Food Mill

Filling the Jars

Putting the Lid on

Putting the filled Jars in the Water Bath.

The Wood Stove

Finished products....Applesauce, Cherry Chutney and Tomato Apple Chutney

If you would like more information on Carriage Hill or the Canning Class,

Please visit their website at