Sunday, April 22, 2018

The Ways of My Household/The Vicky Challenge: 4/22/2018

We worked on our shed a combined 30 hours this week.  At an average of $23 per hour we saved $690 by doing the work ourselves.  The floor that was damage when the tree fell on the building was replaced this week.  This is the subfloor, next is the actual floor and then we'll be ready to start using it.  There are still a few cosmetic things to do on the outside but for all practical purposes when we get the floor down, it will be ready for use!!!

I, along with the help of my husband to get the corner posts out of the ground, took down the fence that went around our garden area.  It was getting in bad shape and in need of repairs so we decided to just take it down and be done with it.  It will make mowing around the garden easier as well as maneuvering the tractor in and around it when the garden needs working.  I spent a total of 10 working on it at $15/hour manual labor pay saving us $150.  (Pictures of garden are with and without fence)
I downloaded The Homemade Housewife by Katie Singh for free (e-book) this week.  Regular price $7.99 … savings $7.99

I got my herbs, tinctures and salves organized and inventoried.  I've been working on this off and on for a couple of weeks, it feels good to have it done.  I now know what I have, how much and what I need to replace.
We’re eating mostly out of our pantry right now and only spent approximately $25 at the grocery store this week.  That’s where most of the savings we are funding our emergency fund with are coming from, our grocery budget.  Having a well-stocked pantry allows us to do that!
I had some onions that were just before going bad so I sliced and dehydrated them.  I will leave them in slices until I get ready to use them, then I’ll either break or chop them up into small pieces or grind them into powder for onion powder.
I organized the fabric that I’ve pulled from my stash for current sewing projects.  I love having them so handy where I can think and plan out patterns and design.  The fabrics are wrapped on these comic book boards that I ordered from Amazon.
I am trying to learn all I can about herbs, essential oils and homeopathic remedies so I watched this youtube video on making and using comfrey compresses.  I knew comfrey was good for bone injuries, sprains, bruises and such but it’s always nice to see how others use it.   

I received a question this week wanting to know what soap nuts were.  I'm just now getting around to answering the question ... soap nuts are grown on a tree/bush and act as laundry detergent when doing laundry.

My husband is having some hip problems so I had him use a castor oil pack on the affected area and within 1 hour he could tell the difference in his pain level.  He and I both are firm believers in how much castor oil packs help when inflammation is involved.  (I am not a doctor, I'm just sharing what we've tried and have found to work for us.  Always seek medical attention when pain or sickness occur.)  Here's the castor oil we use.
Our chickens gave us 6 dozen eggs this week and at $3/dozen that's a savings of $18.
I added this travel pillow pillowcase to my shop ... Pillowcases by Patsi.
My Vicky Challenge savings this week come to ... $865.99.  Add that amount to the total of $2548.30 since March 21st, 2018 and our savings thus far are ... $3414.29.
We continue to cook from scratch, feed the compost bin and do all our normal money saving things that are second nature to us.
That's it for me this week, how have you built up your pantry or saved money this week?

Want to see how I’m doing on my April’s t0-do/goals list … go HERE
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A Working Pantry
She looketh well to the ways of her household … Proverbs 31:27
My other blog:  She Hath Done What She Could 

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  1. Great job on the shed. I will serve you well for years to come. I hope your husband is better soon. We have found DoTerra Deep Blue rub to be very helpful but it is pricey. I have started learning about the Bach flower remedies. It is always good to expand my knowledge and I am already finding help there.

    We received a monetary gift for a getaway from our middle son's family for Christmas. We took a little trip to Virginia to see one of our favorite Bluegrass bands and had a very nice time away. We got off the interstate and drove the back roads on the way home which is something we really enjoy especially in farm country . We packed water and snacks.

    The grocery outlet had some wonderful bargains such as 3/$1 one pound boxes of brown and powdered sugar, 50 cent pouches of real bacon peices, $3 for 2 lb of whole bean coffee, $3.69 for 2 lb of shaved turkey breast, and my husband's favorite, a huge tub of Bob's soft peppermint candy for 3.99. We got 2 more free yogurts and 2 free candy bars plus paid 40 for a 50 dollar gas card at the regular grocery store.

    Hubby is ready to paint the 2 story stairwell after a lot of prep work.

    Looks like it is finally going to warm up here in a few days. My wintered over plants are out of the garage awaiting expected rain tomorrow which will get them going again.

    Have a good week! I look forward to seeing those new pillowcases.

    1. Lana, I'm not familiar with Bach flower remedies so I will have to research it. I, like you and always looking to expand my knowledge. What a blessing to be able to get away for a few days without having to figure out how you're going to pay for it! You got some really good deals at the grocery outlet! We're supposed to have rain for a couple of days so I'll be working on more pillowcases for my shop. I hope you have a great week!

  2. Wow Patsy you have saved so much money doing all of the shed and fence removal yourselves, good on you :). Your travel pillowcase is adorable and you got so much organised this week.

    I am glad your husband got some relief from his hip pain through natural remedies. We use Arnica cream for DH's injuries and pain and found it brings down both the swelling and pain levels significantly for him and reapply when it wears off. It is worth a try as well and as with most things consult your doctor before using any natural therapies as these can interfere with other medications you are on and also cause allergic reactions in some people. Arnica is also good to put on bruises as well.

    Our Vicky challenge added up to $74.68 this week.

    Financial -
    - Listed 10 items on eBay using a free listing promotion saving $16.50 in listing fees.
    - Banked more money into our saving for our home deposit account bringing us to 24.77% of the way there.
    - Redid our budget and increased our grocery budget up to $75 a week to allow for inflation and price rises other categories as well.
    - Banked $80 into our bank emergency fund.
    - Earned $4 from the sale of silver beet in the gardens which I used to purchase some apples on a good special.

    - Purchased 7.45kg of apples reduced from $3.50 to $1.99kg saving $11.25 on usual prices.
    - Found a 3kg bag of Valencia oranges on clearance saving $2 on usual prices and they are perfectly fine just close to the stores best before date.
    - Purchased 10 tins of long life vegetables and meat on 50% off special saving $20 on usual prices.

    Gifts and blessings -
    - A friend dropped over a grocery bag full of lemons free she picked from trees at the school she works at saving us $14.16 on purchasing them. In return to say thank you I picked a bunch of silver beet from the gardens to give her.

    In the kitchen -
    - Juiced and zested all the lemons and froze both for future use.
    - Made 5 bags of apple pie filling using apples on special and free lemons gifted to us saving $6.77 over purchasing tinned apples. I still have more apples left to process.
    - Cooked all meals and bread from scratch.

    In the gardens -
    - Trimmed, separated and transplanted a whole garden bed full of canna & native lilies and elephant ears into our new nursery bed.

    Have a wonderful week ahead everyone :).


    1. I've been hearing some good things about arnica so I need to check it out. You've really gotten the most out of the fruit, love reading how you stretch and save! You've had a really great weak!

    2. Patsy, We use Arnica montana tablets sublingually. They are especially useful for any sort of inflammation. I try to remember to use them before I go to the dentist because even getting my teeth cleaned makes my mouth so sore. I buy the Hyland's brand and they are very reasonable.

    3. Thank you Lana, I'll check into them!

  3. Are the castor oil packs purchased or made? Are they heated before using? Love your posts!

    1. I make ours Sharon. We put the castor oil pack (cloth) on the area we want it on, a plastic grocery bag over it and then a heating pad on low heat over that. We try to do this in 2 hour increments.

  4. Dear Patsy, Well done, so much work accomplished! I was thinking your shed has been pre disastered with the tree incident so it should be ok forever now!
    You have achieved so much already this year! With love

    1. Annabel, I sure hope so!!! This is our year of being very intentional for several things and the shed was on the list.

  5. My husband suffers greatly from a bad hip. We have tried several creams from the natural store, including arnica, Tiger Balm, and several more. Some help a bit, and while it's temporary, it helps him go to sleep. So, I'm curious about the Castor Oil. Where do you get it? It sounds like it may be worth a try. He has been to the doctor numerous times, and they are going to give him a shot in his hip, and so I hope that helps. It has become bad enough that they gave him a disabled parking permit for 6 months while they continue to try to find ways to help him. But, we are always looking for ways to relieve the inflammation/pain in a natural way. He has recently started taking turmeric, but has not found a lot of relief from it--maybe a small bit, he says.

    I love how your garden looks now. It will be easier to till. I was able to till a small part of my backyard garden with our tiny tiller, but the bulk of it needs to dry out more, and then be tilled with the bigger tiller, something I can't manage. So, it's nice this week, and hopefully, my husband will be able to tackle the job if he feels well enough. I've hardened off my tomatoes, and have some Walls-o-Water that my husband found while cleaning out things from our old place, so I want to plant some of the tomatoes in those. It's a bit early yet, but April is quickly passing, so I need to get onto these projects.

    I'm still getting my feet back under me from being gone for 11 days, so I plan to do some cooking/meal planning/house chores/garden and yard work/homeschool/work and appointments this week. Now to put the jobs into logical order so I can get as many of them done as possible:). I love a good challenge, which looks like a good thing at this point!

    1. Becky, I added a link to this post on castor oil and also a link showing the castor oil that we use. I'm thinking that it will be more like the first of May or maybe the middle of May before we'll do much more planting. That's late for us but we have a long growing season so we'll see how it turns out this year. It takes me a while to 'get my feet' back under me when I've been gone for any length of time too. Don't overdo it!

    2. Becky, I highly recommend trying DoTerra Deep Blue Rub. He can use it three times a day. It has really helped me with my knee problem.

  6. I knew you were working on the shed lots, with the weather nice. I am also trying to learn more about essential oils and mixed blends. My oldest daughter got into them last year and has made me a few. I have been busy outside since it has been nice out. I finally got my peas planted! Kale has been growing well so my youngest daughter has been making lots of her smoothies with it. The rest of my week is here:

    1. Making Cents of it All, do you have any essential oil blends you can share? Glad you got your peas planted!

    2. I have vertigo. I get severe nausea. It is a grapeseed oil base. 2 parts lavender, 1 part peppermint and 1 part cyprus. She did 6-3-3. I rub it on my feet, wrists, temples and under my nose. It makes a huge difference.


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