Thursday, February 29, 2024

Frugal Friday Wrap Up 3/2/24


   Hello all.   I am trying to get this post actually up on the day that it should go up.  I'll count this as a win thank you. There is so much going on in our lives right now and the stress of it all continues to take a toll on my health.  I know, I know, so many people say I have to not let it, but it does, it is just part of how I am wired.  We got news this week on our relative's health and it is worse than first thought.   The cost to fix my car keeps climbing as more things are found to be wrong with it.  We did get a bit of good news amongst the bad though. We were able to talk to someone in the Lewiston, ID Social Security Office and he sent to message over to the Auburn, WA office about there being no movement on Jeff's claim since January 4th.  That apparently helped to get them to start actually working on said claim.  Thank goodness the claim for benefits is retroactive because we will need those funds to help pay for the repairs to my car.  Now, onto the frugal doings...    

~Chris came over with a trailer that he borrowed from his police chief to haul my car over to the mechanic in the next town over.

~I have been trying to build up our at home library with books that will help us be even more independent food wise and live a more frugal life than we already do.  I picked up a book on foraging and a book on retirement for .99 each at Goodwill.

~I found a beautiful gray throw blanket at Goodwill for $3.99.  Jeff found a cover for his windshield to keep snow and ice off it and a Seattle Seahawks shirt.  He used a 20% off coupon on the most expensive item.

~I made several batches of sourdough and cheese crackers and also a batch of Everything Bagel crackers.  They have become a favorite here.

~More sandwich bread was baked.

~We stocked up on more bottled water.  We had a situation in our town recently where our water was injected with way too much chlorine.  It smelled like a swimming pool whenever you ran any water.  I am so glad that we have a Berkey and lots of bottled water on hand.

~Jeff and I finally got my hair cut.  I feel so much better now.

~We had a nice facetime visit with Josh.  He is up for a great promotion and from what he is hearing, he will be getting it.  Lauren is also applying for another job and we are praying that she gets it.

~Heather's parent gave us a beautiful gift of a honu (turtle) with a meaningful design on its back wood carving that her father Bruce made.  He is an amazing artist and is finally selling his carvings.  I will treasure this gift and it will go down through our family as an heirloom for generations to come.

~We had Steven spend the night with us this past weekend while his parents had a date night and went to see the musical "Stomp".  We had so much fun with him!

~We are eating out of the pantry, fridge and freezer for the most part.  Jeff has been helping me more with making meals since he is semi-retired.  He made us pancakes for breakfast on Monday.

~I was feeling rather stressed out on Tuesday while my car was in the shop.  Jeff and I headed into town to pick up a few things (we took his little car to save gas).  I found 2 beautiful coffee mugs, a gorgeous little vase ( I had been wanting one that size to put roses from my garden in), a Wizard of Oz book that had the complete first 5 books in it (gift for a grandson whose birthday is coming up), a beautiful Thomas Kincaid print with an inspirational bible verse that is a much needed reminder that God is always with us (beautifully matted and framed) and 2 shirts (on clearance for .75 each).

~We stopped at Grocery Outlet after the thrift store and found a 20oz. package of refrigerated chicken and herb tortellini on clearance for .77 (that became dinner once we got home with a homemade garlic butter, parsley and spinach, dehydrated from our garden last Summer) sauce.  That made for 2 complete meals for both of us.  We also found a party sized package of mozzarella sticks for $3.99.  I could not even make them from scratch for that price!  Gala apples were $3.99 for a 5 pound bag, so we got some of those too.  They had our new favorite coffee there for $5.99 a large can so we bought 2 of them.  We picked up a few more items to round out our pantry and I feel like we are set for awhile now. 

*******************************************************We picked up my car from the our mechanic and he did a great job replacing the CV joint and fixed another issue he came across.  Unfortunately, upon driving my car home, the transmission decided to act up big time> UGH!  Jeff thought it was just the CV joint causing the issues but now we know it was a multitude of problems.


~I made a menu up based on what needed to be used up ASAP so that we do not waste anything.

~I had to cancel our planned visit to my parents and brother due to the car problems.  It broke my heart to have to do so, but we are still planning ongoing to see them when we loop up to them in late April after going to see Josh, Lauren and the littlest grandkids.

~I had avocados to use up so I made a big batch of guacamole with them.  I had that with tortilla chips for dinner on the night that Jeff had his bowling league.

~My husband blessed me by mixing up some chicken salad and made us chicken salad sandwiches for dinner on Wednesday night while I took a shower.  It was so nice to come out to dinner that was made.

~Walmart is being hit with a class action lawsuit over prepackaged organic fruit and prepackaged meats saying they weighed more than they did.  I just filed with the settlement claim for a check for $15 because of all the meat I had bought there from 2018 to 2023.

      As you can see, we have had quite the emotional ride.  Prayers would be much appreciated for our relative and our finances also.  Jeff and I continue to try to keep the budget low for things we can control, and we do take advantage of good sales and things when we find them.  I still am in shock at the price we found the tortellini for.  I just wish there had been more than one package so I could have thrown a few in the freezer for future meals.  Since Jeff is at his bowling league tonight, I think I will look and see what kind of flower seeds I have here on hand.  Then I can dream of where I shall plant all those flower seeds once it is time to do so.   I am so looking forward to Spring!  

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Lots Going On...


      Well...Um...I know I say this a lot, but wow.  We have had so much going on and my head is just swimming at this point.  Sometimes I feel like I am just trying to tread water and keep my head above the waterline.  We have had some heart-breaking news in our family, and also a much prayed for reconnection with a relative that had been deeply hurt and cut out, as we have been, by some within the "other" side of our family.   This teeter totter of emotions has been exhausting.

   While all of this has been going on, we are also dealing with my car having issues.  My car is now in the shop.  Our new mechanic played t-ball with our boys all those years ago, which is making me feel very old.  My mother gleefully pointed out that yes, we are old.  She got a real kick out of being able to point that out. 😆  Yes, we have a very warped sense of humor is our family and I am glad that she got a good giggle out of the situation.

   Added to all of the above, we are still waiting for Social Security to approve Jeff's application.  He applied on January 3rd.  We were told that it should have been approved by now, but if it had not, to call the local office.  We have tried to talk to someone in the local office, but have been put on hold and waited for 1 1/2 hours yesterday and today, they can't even give us an estimate of how long we will be on hold and were told, via a computer, to call back another time.  UGH!

   So yes, things have been a bit crazy around here with all that is going on.  Some of it is good, and some not at all.  Hopefully we will have another answer to prayer relating to the heartbreaking news and things will turn around there.   I just wish we were living closer to that relative so I could help care for them.  




Friday, February 16, 2024

Valentine's Day


My Valentine's day was filled with a rather painful follow up medical screenings at the hospital, followed by wonderful news, and an emergency visit to see Dr. Ellis, followed by the removal of a molar that I had broken badly. The staff at the hospital in Colfax were amazing, as was Dr. Ellis and staff at the Whitman Dental Clinic in Colfax. We also got to visit with Katie Ellis and her adorable little boy who looks just like his daddy (Dr. Ellis). We have known Katie since she was a little girl and we love her dearly! We also had a short but fun visit with our friend David Farmer. Jeff took me out to lunch between appointments and to do some thrift store shopping. We also got a phone call from Jeff's cousin Alan about Jeff's aunt and Jeff reached out to her. Thanks to Alan, we are now reunited with her and are so happy to have her in our lives once more.
God has a way of turning things around and removing obstacles. I am so very grateful for those HE has placed in our lives and for my very loving, calm and caring husband who is there for me and holds me when I am scared and prays with me. All in all, it turned out to be a very good day!