Saturday, June 25, 2016

Pantry Challenge #25 ... 2016, The Vicky Challenge and other thrifty things we did this week!

I’ve had quite a busy week!  Read on to see what I mean!!!!

Note:  My Vicky Challenge Savings are added in at the appropriate places.  

My to-do list from last time:

Harvest herbs.  Done!  I harvested dill, basil, lavender, sage, spearmint, cilantro and parsley.  Saved $10

Continue working on cleaning out raised beds. Didn’t get done due to the heat and rain!

Quilt 4 blocks on this toddler quiltGot 2 blocks quilted instead of the 4 I had planned!  Hey, it’s better than nothing!

In addition:

Started chopping and dehydrating garlic. 

Gratefully received 2 five gallon buckets of fresh from the vines cucumbers.  Saved $20

Gratefully received 4 fresh from the vine tomatoes from a neighbor.  Saved: $2

Saved the peelings from the 4 tomatoes we were given and dehydrated them.  I will turn them into tomato powder when I get enough to grind.

Saved the seeds from the same 4 tomatoes and they are now sitting on my window shelf drying.
When they are completely dry I will put them into an empty pill bottle that I have cleaned and then label the bottle.  I’ll save the seeds for next year’s tomato planting.

Canned 9 more pints of sweet pickle relish.  Saved $18.72

Canned 9 quarts of hamburger dill chipsSaved $25.29  

Enjoyed lots and lots of cucumbers and onions in a vinegar, water and salt mixture.

I shared with a dear older lady in our community about castor oil packs after she mentioned that she was suffering with inflammation on her knee and was having trouble walking.  She showed me her knee and I have to admit it was obvious that it was pretty bad but, I’m happy to say that by the next morning it was well enough that she was able to drive and go do her grocery shopping.

Finished the 2nd of three toddler quilt tops I’m making for my grandchildren for Christmas this year.  (I’m also hand quilting them.)

Saved $6.62 using coupons, shopping sales and loss leaders for pantry and non-pantry related items.   Did very little grocery shopping this week!

Ordered The Resilient Gardener by Carol Deppe at no cost to me.     Saved:   $23.31

Added compost material to the compost bin. Our compost bin is really getting some good vegetable scraps added to it almost daily!

Harvested 4 zucchini from the garden.  Saved $2.36

Completed two PineCone Surveys earning me $6.

Planted 1 tomato plant that I found in the greenhouse while organizing it and getting all the plants out of it for the summer. (It gets too hot for anything to grow in the greenhouse in our hot and humid summers.)  I planted the tomato plant.  It looks so small compared to the other plants, but hey, it’ll give us a few late tomatoes!!!  Saved $1

Added 8 small soda bottles of water to the freezer for use when canning (to cool vegetables down when recipe calls for it).  Saved $2.50 (the price of one bag of ice in our area.)

Added 1 gallon of water to the freezer in preparation for hurricane season.  I used empty milk jugs that had been washed out.  (It is part of our hurricane preparedness preps.)  We’ll use them to keep things cool in an ice chest or to help keep a room cool should electricity go off and there is no air conditioning (you can fill a crate with frozen jugs of ice and turn a battery operated fan on them to distribute the cooler air coming off them throughout the room).  Saved $1.50

I started making this set of hand puppets using what I have on hand and completed the 'chicken' this week.  This will be another Christmas gift for my gift trunk.   

Chickens laid 3 dozen eggs this week:  Saved $9

Yard work/gardening/landscaping (does not include mowing) (2 hours x $10 per hour for labor):  Saved $20

Thus far this year my Vicky Challenge savings/earnings have been $7,855.25, add this week’s amount ($148.30) and I/we have saved $8,003.55.  I'm really enjoying seeing how much I/we save/earn through being frugal!

Here are some things I want to get done in the upcoming week:

Continue chopping and dehydrating garlic.
Inventory pantry

Now it’s your turn, what have you done to build up your pantry, live frugally or save this week?

She looketh well to the ways of her household … Proverbs 31:27

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This post linked to:  The Art of Homemaking Blog Hop


  1. Hi Patsy,
    You had a very productive week!
    I am interested in the castor oil packs but they sound so so messy. And I don't like messes. Any tips about how you do the?

    1. Rhonda, It is messy, there's just no way around it but you can minimize the messiness by not over saturating the cloth you're using and by keeping a towel under the area you're treating.

  2. "Added 8 small soda bottles of water to the freezer for use when canning"

    Genius!! Never occurred to me.


    (you can fill a crate with frozen jugs of ice and turn a battery operated fan on them to distribute the cooler air coming off them throughout the room).

    I experimented with this last year...It does work fairly well, especially if you can close off the room.

    1. Thank you! Closing off the room would be the key to success for sure!

  3. You have been busy! Your garden is producing very well right now. Mine is just getting going--I'm sure a difference in climate. Anyway, the pickles look very good, and the quilt squares are going to make a cute quilt.

    1. Becky, yes, our garden is in peak season right now and we are busy as bees!

  4. I enjoy reading your blog so much and you are so inspiring. Let me ask a question if i may. When you were talking about the elderly lady with the knee issue and she used the Castor oil Packs. Would you mind elaborating a bit. What was the problem with her knee? Did she apply the pack to her knee or as was told in the video? I understand the toxin removal and all but need to understand the knee issue. I may need to try this. Thanks so much for your time.

    1. Kim, the elderly lady had been diagnosed by a doctor has have inflammation in the knee. She had a swollen spot about the size of a softball on her knee. The castor oil pack was applied to her knee. I hope this helps.

  5. Wow Patsi you've been busy! I love seeing what your doing with the produce! We're a little behind you garden wise, but with 5 gardens I am in no hurry to begin my canning! LOL I didn't do much shopping, but it was a good week for getting things in the mail. I got 2 packs of diapers and 3 containers of wet dog food. My husband has been going to yard sales and has saved quite a bit there, but getting him to sit still long enough for me to figure out the savings is like rounding up a toddler! So I'll have to add those savings later. I have been hanging laundry out to dry and doing lots of babysitting of the grandbabies. I did pick up some more Coke points while babysitting. I like getting those Walmart gift cards! Just having a little bit extra can really add up pantry wise. I hope you have a good week mine will be filled with babysitting again.

    1. Vicky, 5 are going to be busy! It seems like I'm preserving something in some way almost daily ... and I am so thrilled. Okay, talk to me about how you get free things in the mail. Pretty please??? I 'smell' another lesson here!!!!

    2. Patsi,
      Will email you soon!

  6. Wow! You were busy! I can't wait until we have something in our garden to can, we're way behind you. Thank you for the hint about castor oil packs, sounds like something to try when arthritis strikes. Always looking for homeopathic remedies!


    1. Jane, the day I read about and decided to try castor oil packs was a good day. This method has helped me several times.

  7. Patsy, what an awesome week you had. I feel like a bit of an amateur by comparison. I shopped from my freezer and pantry and spent little at the supermarket which was a significant saving of around $100. I created gifts for my daughters friends for birthdays, saving another $100 on the 'acceptable spend' for 16 year old girls. And it's holidays here, so baking and creating at home is always another big saving. I must go and read you 'This is Why' series. You've piqued my interest there! Mimi xxx

    1. Mimi, being able to shop from your pantry and not the grocery store is a huge accomplishment. You didn't get there overnight! And being able to create gifts for teen girls is even more of an accomplishment! Hats off to you! I hope you enjoy the series 'This is Why!'

  8. You did very well for the ways of your household Patsy! I ma very pleased with my week too. Have a lovely weekend! xxx

  9. Wow, what a productive week Patsy! Very inspiring to see all the savings! :)


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