Saturday, December 31, 2016

The Ways of My Household ... 12/31/2016

I hope everyone had a merry Christmas!  We did!  All our Christmas wrappings, trims, decorations and tree have been put away until time to bring them back out again in 2017.  My gift trunk is ready to start filling again, goals are being set for 2017 and we are ready to move forward, but before we do that we need to close out 2016.

Let’s see how the last 2 weeks of this year have shaped up …

I ‘woke-up’ a sourdough starter that I purchased and am now ready to start making sourdough bread.

My husband’s cell phone stopped working, thankfully when we took it in they said it was a manufacturer problem and replaced his phone free of charge.   Saved:  $150

We saved $36.70 using coupons and shopping sales for food and non-food pantry items.

I printed out my Food Preservation Log/Journal and got it ready to start entering information onto and not a minute too soon either because, we purchased hog jowl (pictured above)  for the freezer part of our pantry this week.  We brought it home, sliced it and added 7 packages/meals to our pantry and 3 packages of scraps which we’ll use for seasoning purposes.  I put my Food Preservation Log/Journal on a clipboard and placed it where I would have easy access to it in the kitchen.

In addition, we were at Aldi’s one day and found a $5 off each ham sale (limit 4).  We purchased the limit and added them to the freezer part of our pantry (with the $5 off each ham, we paid between $4 and $6 for each).

 I turned this men’s shirt into fabric using this method to ‘de-bone’ it.  (The shirt was given to my husband in November and he couldn’t wear it.  The giver had lost a lot of weight and couldn’t wear it either … it was brand new with the tags still attached!)  I loved the fabric so I decided to keep it and turn it into an addition to the fabric/sewing part of my pantry. Savings:  $10 worth of fabric!   See how much brand new fabric I got out of this shirt ... plus the buttons ... you know I saved the buttons!  Here's what was left when I got done that went in the trash can ....  Waste not!  Want not!

I found this post  on preserving lemons and thought ‘duh, why haven’t I thought of that!’ You can bet that I will be watching for sales on lemons a little closer now that I’ve discovered this little tip!  This, along with juicing lemons and freezing the juice in ice trays, are two ways to preserve fresh lemons.  Don’t throw out the lemon peels either, you can make lemon rind or use them to make citrus vinegar which can be used in cleaner recipes.
I made some low-carb burritos and added them to the freezer part of my pantry.  The recipe called for 4 large eggs scrambled … season to taste, chopped onions and peppers, 1 pound sausage and 1 cup shredded cheese.  I doubled the recipe. Cook sausage with onions and peppers. Place mixtures and cheese in burritos, roll up, flash freeze, wrap each in plastic wrap, place in a gallon ziplock bag and put in freezer.  When you’re ready to use, take out of the freezer, heat and eat!  This made 8 burritos (approximately 10 carbs each) for us.  Both my husband and I liked these, so I’ll be making more.

I earned $19.95 from affiliate links in December.  Thank you to everyone who shopped Amazon through my affiliate link.  Every little bit helps!

I downloaded free from Amazon the e-book, Pinch Like You Mean It, 101 Ways to Spend Less Money Now by Dr. Penny Pincher.   Saved: $3.99

I also downloaded for free from Amazon the Proverbs 31 PrepperSaved $4.99

I’m on day 87 of my 100 Day Crochet Challenge.   I completed 5 more dishcloths for my use.  I now have new dishcloths to use in my kitchen.   I had to join yarns in each of them at least once in order to use up all the partial skeins I had.   I’m counting this as a $25 savings (5 dishcloths x $5 each).  I have already deducted the cost of the materials for an earlier project and since I’m using the leftover yarn from that project there is no cost to deduct.
I also added 4 dishcloths to my gift trunk with 4 more to finish off.  Adding these gives me a good start on my 2017 gift trunk!  Savings $24

I set up a 2017 Goals: Season by Season page, be sure to check it out!  I seem to get so much more accomplished if I have a plan a.k.a. goals.
I had another flare-up with my back and had to take time out for several sessions using my castor oil pack.  Yet again this method has saved me a visit to the doctor and the subsequent round of steroids, both pill and shots, that are the usual standard treatment.  Savings to us:  $75
Not working outside my home … Saved $100 (x 2 weeks)
The USDA’s ‘moderate’ Food Budget for a family the size of ours is $589.70 monthly.  In December we spent about $300, that’s a savings of $289.70

Thus far this year my Vicky Challenge Savings  savings/earnings have been $18,444.96, add this week’s amount ($839.33) and the final total for 2016 comes to $19,284.29.  Being home gave me time and energy to pursue deals and savings, make things myself instead of buying them and do things myself instead of paying someone else to do them for me.  For the season of life I’m in and the skill set I posses; I could not have cleared $19,284.29 had I been working outside my home!  Yes, we made the right choice for us!

This post ends the Pantry Challenges/Ways of My Household posts for 2016.  Next week, we’ll start with 2017.  Thank you for being a part of our journey this year!

Now it’s your turn, what have you done to build up your pantry, care for your household or live frugally these past 2 weeks? 

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

 Have you read this series, This is Why! and this free e-book, Yes, You Can Have a Well-Stocked Pantry?  And don’t forget to check out the ‘Free Downloads’ page.  You’ll find some helpful pantry building stuff available for free!

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Disclaimer: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links.  This means that if you click on the link and place an order, etc I earn a small fee at no increased cost to you. Thank you for your support through these means.

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