Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Spring Break

Sorry I am a little off schedule with the kids home. I will try to get back on here this week and get updated! For those also on spring break ENJOY!!!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Survival Saturday

And the 72 hour kit continues on..........

I really wanting to get my kit done. I have several items scattered about the house and shed. We did pull out a bin 'o' bags and found packs for all of us. Now if I can just figure out where to put them!! LOL! I also still need to actually put the items I have in them. I know brilliant idea, huh? Maybe this week I ca pull it off. Don't hold your breath! ;)

Original list is here.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Food Storage Friday

More than Food Storage
Organize yourselves; prepare every needful thing;
Doctrine and Covenants 88:119
I have been wanting to talk about other items to store for a while and as I was reading Christy's blog today I thought, "PERFECTION". So for today go here.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Tasty Tuesday

( I wish she had a cute button to post)
I have found a new to me site. Krystal has done an amazing job at putting together yummy, economical, healthy, food while also using food storage items.

As soon as I get some lentils I would love to try her RICE AND LENTIL BURRITOS.

Krystal also does a mix it up Monday where she shows you how to make and use your own mixes. I am looking forward to making my own SWEET BREAD MIX .

Be sure to look around. She has a main item list on the right hand side. On the left hand side she has a TON of other recipe blogs I can not wait to go check out!!! YUMMY!!!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Money Monday

Receipt Check in #2

Okay so if you are new to this blog or just missed the last two Mondays here are links to the previous post in this series. Starting out & Check in #1.

So here is the update for this week:

Grocery: $183.62 + $138.47=$322.09 I hit some good stock ups for our food storage.

Household: $59.12+$20.53=$79.65 James needed a haircut and I needed some silly house stuff.

Dinner/Fun: $94.54+$58.28=$152.82 I told you this is our BAD area. :(

That is all we added this past week. We spent a total of $217.28. I am glad a majority of it was on groceries. The great thing is I saved an average of 50-60% on my groceries this week!!!

Sunday, March 22, 2009


The Blessings of the Temple

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Food Storage Friday / Survial Saturday

Emergency Essentials Case Lot Sale

Case Lot Customer Favorites Sale!Order Quickly, Supplies Limited Sale Price Good Through March 31st, 2009

Instant Fat Free Powdered Milk
6 or More $13.46 Single Can $14.95
"Wow! I bought this as "emergency" supplies, but decided I'd better crack open a can before buying more, just to make sure it was OK. Gee, was I surprised. Normally powdered milk is gray, and doesn't taste at all like regular milk. My kids were drinking this stuff with no complaints (they didn't even notice!), and I'm using it when I can't get to the store. Excellent product." Jennifer, New Mexico

Yoder's Canned Bacon 12 or More $11.66 Single Can $12.95 "I have had this bacon in my food storage for about 2 years now. It is quite good and in fact we now use it almost daily. A very good addition to any food storage program if you like smoked bacon." -Mike, Nevada

Banana Slices6 or More $23.36 Single Can $25.95 "These are my very favorite snack ever! I love to just eat them dry throughout the day. They are great because you can take them everywhere and not have to worry about bruising the banana. I have to be very careful about rationing them or else before I know it, the whole can is gone."E.D. Utah

Low-Fat Granola Cinnamon Almond 6 or More $9.86Single Can $10.95 "WOW, this really is the best tasting granola our family has ever had. We enjoy it as a treat with yogurt or munching it straight from the can. A good breakfast, a good snack. Very flavorful, lower in calories than lots of other choices out there. A staple for our long-term food storage as well as a great everyday item!" -Kristi Texas

Freeze Dried Green Peppers 6 or More $17.96 Single $19.95 "I love this product because it tastes great, just like fresh peppers. Freeze dried will keep better than opening frozen and storing in freezer. I'll have these on hand to use everyday or in an emergency. Highly recommend this product!" -Julia, Tennessee

White Flakes Onions6 or More $17.96 Single Can 19.95 "I hate dicing onions and my husband jokes that my onions have to be NVO (no visible onions). These are great because they meet both my requirements. I just throw a handful in when cooking (or more or less as needed). I don't have to dice and I get the great onion flavor without big chunks of onion."-Laurie, Maryland

Peanut Butter Powder6 or More 13.46Single Can $14.95 "I love this peanut butter powder! It has a tremendous roasted peanut flavor making it perfect for use in baking. I adore it in cookies. I make batches of peanut butter to keep in my fridge. I have found that using milk to mix it, adding a tiny amount of butterscotch powder, & a small amount of sugar helps to mellow out the roasted peanut taste when using it as plain peanut butter for sandwiches. A must have for any food storage program!" -Charlene, North Carolina

Tomato Powder 6 or More $22.46Single $24.95 "This powder is the BEST! Mix it with a little water, you have great tomato paste...want sauce, simply add more water and spices. It is soooo handy! I highly recommend it! And a little goes such a long ways!" -Loa, Washington

Freeze Dried Broccoli 6 or More $17.06 Single $18.95 "I love broccoli so I was thrilled that this was so good!! I love it! It is great to add to soup, re-hydrate it and steam, just eat out of the can! Even my non broccoli lover's eat it straight from the can!!! EXCELLENT!!" -Corinne, Idaho

Freeze Dried Chicken(all white meat) 6 or More $43.16Single $47.95 "I recently bought my first case of this chicken. This is a very high-quality product that is not only great for long-term storage but is easily served in everyday dishes as well. This is one storage product that you will never have a problem in rotating and using what you store. You can use this in a million different ways." -Don, New York

Freeze Dried Green Beans 6 or More $15.26 Single $16.95 "These are the tasties and most convenient food in my pantry. You can cook up as little or as much as you want and they taste just like fresh picked bean - great in soups, rehydrated in casseroles or right out of the can. We love them." -Marsha, Virginia

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Thrifty Thursday

A Well Stocked Car
No not an emergency kit. But a sanity kit!!
How many times do you get running errands or on a "short" ride to a friend or relatives home and about half way into it you hear, "I am hungry" or "I need a drink!"
Well I don't play the stop and pick something up game. Most of the time they just need a quick snack.
And that is what they get from me!
I keep a big zip lock in my console with snacks in it.
Each seat in my vehicle has a water jug.
What snacks do I pack?
Per child: 1 cracker pack (think pb crackers or cheese sandwich crackers)
1 granola bar
1 fruit snack
1 drink box
So they get a treat and I get to save $$$$$$. Plus these are great to have on hand in case you do happen to have some kind of emergency.
Other items to have on hand:
Blankets: I keep 4 small fleece blankets in my car. They are comfort items for tired kiddos, toys (think peek-a-boo), and great for wrapping up a I-really-messed-up-my-cloths kid.
Wet wipes: I have those little sanitized wipes you get at restaurants and baby wipes.
Tylenol or ibuprofen: MOMMY and DADDY saver!! You know you need it sometimes! :) Put some in the car. Saves you $$ and a headache.
Plastic bags: yucky clothes, food messes, & dirty diapers

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Tasty Tuesday

Food Pyramid
Grains: There are two kinds of grains. Whole grains and refined grains. Half of your grains should be whole grains, such as whole-wheat flour, oatmeal, and brown rice.
Vegetables: Make sure to eat a variety of veggies. Vegetables are important sources of many nutrients, including potassium, dietary fiber, folate (folic acid), vitamin A, vitamin E, and vitamin C.
Fruits: Again eat a variety. Fruits are important sources of many nutrients, including potassium, dietary fiber, vitamin C, and folate (folic acid).
Milk: Choose low-fat or fat-free versions. Dairy is important as it provides or body with Calcium, potassium, and Vitamin D as it helps the body to maintain proper levels of calcium and phosphorous.

Meat & beans: Be sure to choose lean cuts of meat. Meats and beans provide many nutrients such as protein, B vitamins (niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, and B6), vitamin E, iron, zinc, and magnesium.

Oils: Most of your fats should come from fish, nuts, and vegetable oils. Avoid saturated fats. Limit fat solids such as butter, margarine, and lard. AVOID trans-fats.

Salt and sugars: Use moderation.

For more information check out mypyramid.gov. This were I got all the above information. Hey I am learning too! :)

Monday, March 16, 2009

Money Monday

Receipt Check-in

Our first Money Monday of March I talked about saving our receipts to truck our spending. So I am here to post my update.

Clothing: $19.50
Household/toiletries: $59.12
Dinner out: $94.54
Hubbies work (meals and needs): $34.91
Grocery: $183.62
Gas: $32.50
Birthday: $20.84
Clothing. James did need some new jammer pants and Ty needed some jeans.
Household includes light bulbs, personal care, diapers, printer ink, and all that kind of stuff.

Dinner out is our bad one always. However we only eat out on the weekends and 30 of this was a dinner out for Elizabeth's birthday. We try to eat out cheaply (I see Thursdays post already!!).

Hubbies work. James is a truck driver. So he travels between here and Idaho. He eats lunch on the road maybe two nights a week. Then there are snacks, gloves and other little items he may need. About $10 of his spending was spent on his Pilot card. It is a rewards card. So really he only spent $25.32.

Gas. We have only filled up our car this month. the Tahoe needs it do that number will go up. :)

Grocery. Thanks to killer coupons and deals I have averaged about $90 a week and most of that was stocking up.
Birthday. Elizabeth turned 6 this month so a party was needed. Party favors were pretty cheep but SO cute. Her gift (ballet tutu and leotard, shoes came out last month) was $14.14.

So there it is. It has been interesting to see where the money goes. I did about three years ago and i remember our dinner out came to almost $400 and our grocery was like $150. Pretty sad!!! We have learned!!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Why Mormons Build Temples
If you ever wanted a great explanation of why The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints builds and loves temples they way they do here is a awesome video just for you. This is also great to show anyone who asks you about them. Sometimes it is hard for us to know where to draw the line with information on the temple. Let this link do it for you.

Survivial Saturday

Still 72 hour kits!

(Here is the link to the master list)

I really want to get these done for our family. So I will be focusing on these each Saturday this month. Today I am going to find a spot to start gathering up the items I already have together.

I also want to start thinking about how I will be packaging these. A few options I have seen are: individual packs, large wheeled totes, buckets, or those super large Ziploc bags. For me I think we will have all our basics in individual packs. My husband and I will each carry for ourselves and on of our two youngest (they are 2 years old), my older to will have their own size appropriate packs (they are 7+ and 6). I think we will also have a wheeled tote for the larger items but i am not sure yet.

I do believe we already have enough pack from various things to out fit us all. This week I plan to find them and make sure they are sturdy enough.

So those are the goals this week. Start gathering what you already have into one place, and decide and gather your packaging.

What works for you? Let me know!!

In referance to Thursday's entry

My about a Dollar Meal!!!

This is a great example of knowing how to bargain shop. I used my coupons and was able to put a great, yummy, healthy meal on the table last night for a whopping $1.17 !!!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Free Book Download

Jean Chatzky's new book, The Difference
Click here for detials and link to free download Thanks to Marne at Making Life Sweet...one deal at a time

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Thrifty Thursday

Shopping Day Prep

Friday is payday, and grocery shopping day at our house. So today I will be getting things together.

I like to start by going over the adds. Then I plan out a menu (Daphne came over and we planned out two whole weeks!!!). Then I go through my coupons and mach them up to sales. Then I write out my deals for each store.

When I am done I have a weekly menu to post on the fridge. My shopping list is all written out and coupons are attached. The coupon folder is organized (hopefully).

Now how is this thrifty? Well, I minimize my impulse buys. I can organize all my shopping into one gas and time efficient trip. I am ready to hit the road right after breakfast so I am not starving while shopping and then I don't buy snacky foods.

Here is a money saving tip I learned from a visiting teacher a few years ago. (If you read this you know who you are and I love you!!) PRAY!! Pray to stay in a budget, pray to find the deals you need, and pray to resist temptation of things you don't need.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Whatever Wednesday Gardening part 2

Edible Landscaping

Edible Landscape Tip:
Ever thought “I live in an urban setting and don’t have space to grow vegetables, fruit and berries” Give some thought to incorporating food producing plants into your landscape? Add within an existing landscape or develop a plan to begin replacing some trees and shrubs with varieties that produce edible products: Take out that juniper and put in blueberries, replace a birch or maple with a fruit tree. Remove a flowering vine or add a vine of grapes or kiwi on an arbor or fence line. Strawberries work well as a ground cover as well as many herbs and leafy vegetables. Include tomatoes, broccoli or lettuce into an existing landscape if you don’t want a formal garden. Consider container gardening.

Nov – June is the time to plant fruit trees and berry bushes. First decide how much space you want to allocate to your site. Think outside the box. I use a fence line for strawberries, grapes and fruit trees and only use about 2’ of ground space along the fence. I figure a half of a fruit tree against a fence is better then no tree. Vertical gardening is a good option for confined spaces.

When considering fruit; use proven varieties that work well in your area. Select disease resistant varieties grown locally. Be careful buying from the big stores who often sell stock shipped in from other parts of the country, which have popular names, but don’t work well here. Study and ask questions locally or look up WSU Cooperative Extension info. WSU; Mt Vernon Research Station in WA has done extensive study on varieties that perform well in Western WA.

Another important fact to know about fruit trees is to study and understand the appropriate root stock that most trees are grafted onto these days. There is dwarf 4’-6’, semi dwarf 6’-10 or 8’-15’ depending on variety of tree and root stock and standard rootstock that allows the tree to grow to its natural genetic size, but with an improved under stock.

Buy from local reputable nurseries that label their trees with variety and rootstock. Some specialist in fruiting trees and shrubs are: (expect $15 – $30 range)

Hartman Nursery – (trees only) bare root availability Nov – March. 713- 21st Street SE, Puyallup, WA ph 253-848-1484 http://www.hartmannursery.com/

Burnt Ridge Nursery – trees and wide variety of nuts & fruiting plants; yr round but remember June is getting late for bare root plantings. 432 Burnt Ridge Rd. Onalaska,WA 98570 ph 360-985-2873 http://www.burntridgenursery.com/
Raintree Nursery – trees and a wide variety of other plants. 391 Butts Road Morton, WA 98356 ph 360-496-6400 http://www.raintreenursery.com/

There are other good local general landscape nurseries like Gartenmeister on 160th that carry stock as well, but ask questions of any nursery prior to your purchase. Understand soil, sunlight, water, nutrient, and size requirements for each plant. Keep in mind 2 R’s - Right plant in the Right place! “Food for Thought”. Brother Ikerd

Tasty Tuesday

Money Saving Menus
We have covered making menus & meatless meals. So know lets look at some great budget stretching menus.
Hillbilly Housewife (Thanks Adrienne for the info. !!) Susanne runs this great site. She has a $40 bare minimum menu. She also has a $70 low cost menu. These are great if you are a tight budget. She has the shopping list, recipes, and do a heads all laid out for you.
Fun Foods on a Budget Stephanie runs this one. If you want to try something new this is the place. Plus she tries to do it cheaply. I have seen everything on this site. Truffles to no-meat hamburgers. She even incorporates fun ethnic foods.
$5 Dinners Erin is a pro at budget friendly meals. Here is the link to her recipes. She even has gluten free recipes. Be sure to check out the rest of her rockin' site.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Money Monday

Envelope System

I am sending you to another blog for this post.

This a great site for those who want to live a little more frugally. Sara is sharing her journey with the whole wide Internet and doing a great job of it! Thank you Sara!!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Survival Saturday

72 hour kit general list
This is a list I really like. It suits my style of doing things. It is compiled by the lovely gals over at
Safely Gathered In. I am going to be using this as my running list for the next little while. I encourage you to work on yours as well. Post what does or does not work for you.

1 sturdy backpack per person (or rolling suitcase), or some tupperware bins (preferably with wheels). You pretty much need something that you will be able to grab at a moment's notice and throw into the back of the car
1 change of clothes per person
1 set of scriptures per family
1 flashlight per person
small first aid kit
personal documents (copies of birth certs, ss cards, wills, patriarchal blessings, insurance card copies, etc). It's also good to have copies of these to send to a family member who doesn't live in your same area
2 gallons water per person (this is a MINIMUM. 3 gallons per person is ideal)
$100 cash per family (make sure you have some change and small bills)
ax & shovel (obviously, this will probably not be kept WITH your kit, but have them available)utility knife
battery powered radio and light
small sewing kit
Food: here is an example of food to store in your kits. Remember to rotate every 6 months!
1 lb dried fruit or trail mix per person
1 pkg soda crackers AND graham crackers per person (there are 4 pkgs per box)
2 liter bottle of orange juice or similar per person
4 granola bars per person
1 can meat per person and
1 can beans per person chicken, tuna, etc and chili, etc.
2 sticks beef jerky per person
1 pkg chewing gum per person
2 packets hot chocolate mix per person
2 instant soup packets per person
1 roll of toilet paper per person
feminine needs
infant needs
1/2 lb dried milk per person
hard candy / lollipops
2 light sticks hand warmer / canned heat
prepare blankets or sleeping bags to be accessible at a moment's notice
1 small toothbrush per person
toothpaste, soap, and shampoo (travel sizes are great)
silver foil emergency blankets (one per person)
mosquito repellent
small entertainment (crayons, card games, etc) and paper/pencils
camp stove or portable BBQ & fuel work
gloves (2 pair per family)
mess kits or disposable plates/cups/bowls/utensils
pet supplies candles, holders, matches
aluminum foil
can opener
garbage bags
Things in yellow are things I have gathered up already.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Cannery update

Info on the next Dry Pack session for Firgorve Ward

Dry Pack will be May 22nd @ 7pm.

All orders are due by April 6th.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Thrifty Thursday

Vinegar and it's MANY uses

Basic cleaning solution (compliments of Sister Ardmore):

½ cup ammonia
1/3 cup vinegar
2 Tbsp baking soda
1 gallon water

Mix in a container, this can be used for cleaning stove tops, bathroom sinks, bath tubs, floors. Anything you would use an all purpose cleaner for.

Use vinegar for a variety of household cleaning jobs. Click here to see and list and how-tos.

It is great for laundry too. Clothes will rinse better if 1 cup of white distilled vinegar is added to the last rinse water. The acid in vinegar is too mild to harm fabrics, but strong enough to dissolve the alkalies in soaps and detergents. For more laundry tips click here.

And of course there are pickles!!! Yummy!!

Bread and Butter Refrigerator Pickles

(Thanks Shirley)

Sliced pickles & onions


1 cup sugar

1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar

1 tsp. Salt

1 tsp. Celery seed

Combine all brine ingredients and bring to a boil. Layer cucumbers and onions in a jar. Pour brine over cuc's and onions and refrigerator for at least on hour. Best if you wait over night.

I LOVE these pickles!!! YUMMY!!!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Whatever Wednesday Gardening part 1

Planning your Garden

As with most things in life we need to have a plan.

What we want to plant. Where and when we are planting it. Here is a great pdf that covers garden planning. Here is the link to the Farmer's Almanac. It gives a time frame for planting just insert your area code and off you go.I figure I will send you straight to the source on this one.

I am planning on Square Foot Gardening this year. James got me the book for Christmas. It was what I wanted. I am planning on getting my area ready this month and hope to be planting mid-late April. I can't wait to share pictures!! Here is a great intro to SFG.

Also container gardening is great for those of us who have limited yard space or live in apartments. Did you know you can plant beans, peas, tomatoes and other vine type plants in hanging baskets? Even herbs would be great this way.

Edible Landscaping. How about adding veggies and fruits into your already exciting landscape?

Happy planting!!!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Tasty Tuesday

Meatless Meals

A great way to save money and use your food storage it meatless meals. For breakfast we like pancakes, toast and canned fruit, cereal, and oatmeal. Lunch is pb&j's, top ramen, mac 'n' cheese, all of these with canned or in season fruit/veggies. Dinner could be anything from grilled cheese to enchiladas.

South-of-the-Border Enchiladas

These look really good. I think I will try them next week. If you try them let us know how they taste. Here is the site I got it from. They have a whole section of meatless dinners Betty Crocker. Another site I found was Meatless Monday. Apparently seafood is not considered a meat. However using it will not generally save you money. LOL!

Well enjoy!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Money Monday

Save that receipt!!!
In fact lets save all our receipts this month. Let's see what money we are spending and where.
So first get a shoebox, envelope, cute basket, or a zip lock baggie. Next go about spending as usual. Put your receipts in the designated container. At the end of the month lets add them up. We will need to have categories for this. Mine will include: groceries, eating out, gifts, clothing, hubbies lunches, household needs (cleaning supplies, TP, laundry soap, batteries), & food storage.
At the end of the month you will be able to see where that money is going. You may be pleasantly surprised. I have a feeling I will feel like I am watching a horror movie, but at least I will know where the money is and be able to set some reasonable goals for the next month.
Thanks Daphne for making this our theme for money this month!!! Great idea!
I will be checking in on this subject through out the month. If you have done this and have any tips or ideas please feel free top comment. If you have questions ask away!


Doctrine And Covenants 78:19 reads, “And he who receiveth all things with thankfulness shall be made glorious; and the things of this earth shall be added unto him, even an hundred fold, yea, more.”

I have been thinking about this a lot lately. When we are striving to live a more provident lifestyle it is important to be thankful. We can see the blessings both temporal and spiritual more clearly when we take the time to count our blessings. It is hard in these uncertain times to see reasons to be grateful given all of the unknowns that we face. However it is a wonderful turn of events when we take the time to thank our Heavenly Father for ALL that he has given us.

Look around you. We live in a wonderful country at a wonderful time. We have so many “comforts” that others in this world may not even imagine. The first that comes to my mind are washing machines and indoor plumbing. (We have had massive sick kids at our house!) We have on call doctors and modern medicine. We also have the ability to go to school and further our education as far as we desire. We have food galore in comparison with most of the world. We are living in a country that allows us to choose our career path. We can decide who we want to marry, how many children we want to have, and were we will attend church.

We decide how we will use our blessings. We also decide if we will take the time to be thankful to our Heavenly Father for those blessings. When we express our gratitude we will be even more richly blessed. We can express that gratitude through prayer, tithes and offerings, service to other, and obedience to His commandments.

Let us be wise and thankful as we count our blessings.

Doctrine and Covenants 78:22
And he that is a faithful and wise steward shall inherit all things. Amen.
Amanda B.