Thursday, May 28, 2009

Thrifty Thursday

Make Your Own
At Make your own you can learn how to make anything from your own insect repellent to skin treatments.
Learn to make your own soaps, lotions, and salt scrubs at Teach soap. These make great gifts too!
Make your own word searches, cross words and mazes at Discovery Education.
Make a Non-Toxic Cleaning Kit at Care2. You can do this using things you already have around your house.
The Simple Dollar has a ton of ideas. The one I am going to try this week is making my own laundry soap. I am about out of my killer stash from last year so....wish me luck!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

Thursday, May 21, 2009

On Vacation

We are going camping this weekend so I will post again on Tuesday. Have a wonderful, fun, and safe Memorial Weekend!!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Working it Wednesday

Job Fairs
Our local Sunday paper had a section on job fairs this week. So I thought I share some of the information I found.

Kate Lorenz an editor at ( if you are local you can go to a quick piece on coming prepared for a job fair. I thought I would just highlight her suggestions. To read the whole article click here.

Main points:

Scouting As in know how to dress and how to act.

Research Know who will be there and what their company is about.

Quick and to the point Time is money don't waste theirs or yours.

Know what to ask If you get the chance know what intelligent questions you want to ask.

Get their card enough said.

Look be fore you leap Look around, and gather all the info the have available before you line up for an interview.

Know how to dress Dress for success

Organize yourself basically have you stuff together and have the materials you will need.

Keep smiling It maybe a long day but make the most of it!

More advice when attending a job fair.

Bring 20-30 resumes. Come early! Research companies buy looking them up one sites like

How to find a job fair near you. Go to National Career Fairs,, or For these sites you simply enter your zip code and up pops a world of opportunity!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Tasty Tuesday

Cooking Essentials

Continuing on with our bare-bones basics I thought we would go over the basic cooking essentials. According to the food guys calculator a year supply of cooking essentials for one adult would consist of: 1# baking powder, 1# baking soda, 0.5# yeast, 5# salt, o.5 gallons vinegar. These are the basics need for many recipes. Most breads, cakes, cookies, rolls, homemade crackers need these items. Some of these items also have non-food uses as well.

Baking powder (per Preparedness Principles) is a blend of an alkali (usually baking soda) and an acid (often cream of tarter). It is known as a double acting leavener. Baking powder has a limited shelf life of 1-2 years. It keeps best stored in a cool, dry place.

Baking soda is also a leavener. It needs to have an acid product mixed with it in order for it to activate. Some examples of this are sour milk, molasses, lemon juice, vinegar and so on. The great thing about baking soda is that it's uses go well beyond the kitchen. It can be used for household cleaning, toothpaste, bug bites and upset tummies. Again store in a cool dry place and this can last you indefinitely.

recipes found on pg. 71 of Preparedness Principles

For 'toothpaste' simply wet your brush and add baking soda. Brush as normal.

For an antacid mix 1/2 teaspoon baking soda to an eight-once glass of water and drink up. (up to 8 times a day(every two hours) for adults, 4 times a day for those 60 and over and not recommended for those under 5)

For bug bites and other skin irritations mix a paste of 2 parts baking soda and 1 part water smooth over irritated area.

Yeast is what makes your bread rise. Unless you really love flat bread this is a basic you will want to have. yeast is best kept in a cool, dry, dark place. It freezes well and it's shelf life is greatly increased when kept in the freezer. Dry yeast comes in three different forms. The most common is active dry yeast. This is what you generally find on the super market shelves in those handy little packages. You can also buy this is 2# blocks in your bulk food sections or at stores like Costco and Sam's club.

Salt is vital to our life and to our health. It is in every cell in our body. It brings out the flavors of food, it preserves food, and it plays a role in helping our bodies to function properly. Salt has an indefinite self life. Store in a clean dry place.

Vinegar is used for pickling, salad dressings and of course vinaigrette. See my previous post for more of the attributes of vinegar. I have yet to see a shelf life for vinegar and my bottle doesn't have a use by date so....I assume it is about the same as the other items today. Store in a cool dry place.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Money Monday

Use A Budget

This weeks post is also based of the All Is Safely Gathered In: Family Finances pamphlet.

"Keep a record of your expenditures. Record and review monthly income and expenses. Determine how to reduce what you spend for nonessentials. "

This is the council we have been given. The LDS website also provides a budget worksheet to help you follow this council.

Need more ideas on how to create and use a budget? Here are some previous post. Here, here, and here.

“I have discovered that there is no way that you can ever earn more than you can spend. I am convinced that it is not the amount of money an individual earns that brings peace of mind as much as it is having control of his money. Money can be an obedient servant but a harsh taskmaster. Those who structure their standard of living to allow a little surplus, control their circumstances. Those who spend a little more than they earn are controlled by their circumstances. They are in bondage. President Heber J. Grant once said: ‘If there is any one thing that will bring peace and contentment into the human heart, and into the family, it is to live within our means. And if there is any one thing that is grinding and discouraging and disheartening, it is to have debts and obligations that one cannot meet’ (Gospel Standards, sel. G. Homer Durham [1941], 111).

“The key to spending less than we earn is simple—it is called discipline. Whether early in life or late, we must all eventually learn to discipline ourselves, our appetites, and our economic desires. How blessed is he who learns to spend less than he earns and puts something away for a rainy day” (see Conference Report, Oct. 1979, 119; or Ensign, Nov. 1979, 81).

Sunday, May 17, 2009


Elder Allan F. Packer Of the Seventy

Here are my favorite quotes from this talk. The bolds are mine. Please click on the link in the title to read the whole talk.

"When I was a young man in high school, one of my passions was American football. I played middle linebacker. The coach worked the team hard, teaching us the basics. We practiced until the skills became natural and automatic. During one play against our biggest rival, I had an experience that has helped me over the years. We were on defense. I knew my assigned opponent, and as the play unfolded, he moved to my right into the line of scrimmage. There was a lot of noise from players and fans. I reacted as the coach had taught us and followed my man into the line, not knowing if he had the ball. To my surprise, I felt the ball partially in my hands. I gave it a tug, but my opponent didn’t let go. As we tugged back and forth, amid all the noise I heard a voice yelling, “Packer, tackle him!” That was enough to bring me to my senses, so I dropped him on the spot.
I have wondered how I heard that voice above all the other noise. I had become acquainted with the voice of the coach during the practices, and I had learned to trust it. I knew that what he taught worked."

"We need to be acquainted with the promptings of the Holy Ghost, and we need to practice and apply gospel teachings until they become natural and automatic. These promptings become the foundation of our testimonies. Then our testimonies will keep us happy and safe in troubled times."

What I learned from this:

As we learn to recognize the promptings of the Holy Ghost we will be able to make better choices. We will be comforted in our times of trial, and we will be able to more fully feel our Saviors love. As we listen to and obey these promptings we will feel our testimonies grow and be better prepared to deal with those hardships to come. No one can take away our testimonies. Not our employer, our bank, the government, or our enemies. It is ours and only ours. It is our responsibility to make it grow. We can not borrow from someone-else, and we can not loan ours out. It is worth our time and effort to fortify it so we may recognise the 'voice' above the noise of the world and follow our Prophet and leaders on the path that leads to true happiness.

I will continue with Elder Packer's talk next week.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Survivial Saturday

An alternative to normal powdered milk
Check out this post on Prepared LDS Family. Click here. Both of these product are available on line as well. Mourning Moo here and Gossner milk here. I have heard Mourning Moo is pretty yummy. I have not heard about Gossner milk. Read all the comments on the post at Prepared LDS Family if you want to get some "hands on' advice.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Food Storage Friday

Powdered Milk

A year supply of powdered milk for 1 adult is 60lbs. When stored under ideal conditions powdered milk can be stored up to 20 years. For a great how-to on powdered milk storage go here. The LDS Provident living site also has a great guide on packaging options.

Want to know more about powdered milk? Including nutritional value and more recipe ideas? Go here
Where to purchase? I have bought mine from my local grocery store and most recently from the LDS Church Cannery. The cannery tends to be a cheaper plus if I go one our wards cannery day I can get it canned in #10 cans. You can check out cannery prices here. If you would like to know where your nearest LDS cannery is go here. Please remember you do NOT have to be LDS to access this wonderful resource!!

I know this post is short but the links posted are perfect and well I have no desire to improve on perfection.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Thrifty Thursday

As I read my Sunday paper I went right for the easy stuff. The parade magazine. I get my bits of gossip, a few comics, and a look at what easy and quick reads there are. With kids and Sunday mornings this is my quick fix. In this process I found an article I thought perfect for this blog. Finding Joy in Frugality by Alix Kates Shulman.
What a great find and a must read for anyone who thinks life ends when ones decides to be frugal. Here are some quotes that I found most enlightening.
"If you don’t need it, don’t buy it; never buy a new one if your old one works; never buy an expensive one when a lower-priced one will do. I abandoned bookstores for libraries, restaurants for my kitchen, boutiques for bargains—and soon found myself enjoying a gleeful sense of liberation."
" Instead of buying what you think you need, adapt your needs to what’s around you. "

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Whatever Wednesday

Show and Tell
Yes I am going to bore you all with more pictures of my awesome garden and a way so awesome coupon deal I miraculously pulled off!! So here we go....
Look at my little peas! They are reaching for the vine! I am so happy!

My second planting of peas are coming up! We are going to have tons of peas!!!

My beans are finally growing. They are lazy. GRRR!!

My second planting of radishes and lettuce are up! Other than that everything is just getting bigger and bigger!!!

So here is my way awesome Albertson's deal. It is to late for anyone to profit from the whole how-to deal so let me just brag. I got ALL this for a whopping $.77!!!! My cheapest deal ever. Yeah for me!

Okay so now that I sound like a total braggy butt... Oh heck I can't help it I am happy!! I hope you all are having success as well. Feel free to share!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Tasty Tuesday


Number 2 on our Bare-Bones Basic tour is dry milk. Don't cringe yet....LOL! I use this a lot in my cooking. It is a great place to start. has some great tips and recipes for using you dry milk.

Milk Gravy:

Milk Gravy
1 cup dry milk cups water

1 tablespoon margarine or butter

3 heaping tablespoons flour

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt
Mix the water and dry milk together. Add the flour, salt, and pepper. Cook over medium heat until the gravy is thickened. Add the margarine or butter and stir until smooth.

You can then add sausage or hamburger to make a great gravy over rice, biscuits, or pasta!

This site also listed ways to make sweetened-condensed milk, evaporated milk, and buttermilk.

For some of you more adventurous types visit She has everything from making your own sour cream to cheesecake. I am so happy that given dire circumstances I will know how to make sou cream! I will survive!!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Money Monday

Avoid Debt

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin taught: “All too often a family's spending is governed more by their yearning than by their earning. They somehow believe that their life will be better if they surround themselves with an abundance of things. All too often all they are left with is avoidable anxiety and distress” ("Earthly Debts, Heavenly Debts," Ensign, May 2004, 42).

In the All Is Safely Gathered In: Family Finances pamphlet it says, "Spending less money than you make is essential to your financial security. Avoid debt, with the exception of buying a modest home or paying for education or other vital needs. If you are in debt, pay it off as quickly as possible."

On the LDS website you can also find debt reduction tools such as a debt-elimination calculator and a family budget worksheet. Both of these tools are beneficial to becoming and staying debt free. Here is a debt calculator that can help you understand the interest you pay and help you calculate how and when you can bee debt free.

"Look to the condition of your finances. Discipline yourself in your purchases, avoiding debt to the extent you can. In most cases, you can avoid debt by managing your resources wisely. If you do incur debt, such as a reasonable amount in order to purchase a modest home or complete your education, work to repay it as quickly as possible and free yourself from bondage. When you have paid your debts and accumulated some savings, you will be prepared for financial storms that may come your way. You will have shelter for your family and peace in your heart" (49).
—See True to the Faith (2004), 48–49

Sunday, May 10, 2009


Mother Mother, who willingly made that personal journey into the valley of the shadow of death to take us by the hand and introduce us to birth—even to mortal life—deserves our undying gratitude. One writer summed up our love for mother when he declared, “God could not be everywhere, and so He gave us mothers.”
While on the cruel cross of Calvary, suffering intense pain and anguish, Jesus “saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother!” (John 19:26–27.) What a divine example of gratitude and love!
My own mother may not have read to me from the scriptures; rather, she taught me by her life and actions what the “Good Book” contains. Care for the poor, the sick, the needy were everyday dramas never to be forgotten.

President Thomas S. Monson An Attitude of Gratitude May 1002 Ensign

Friday, May 8, 2009

Food Storage Friday

The Facts of Rice

You take the good, you take the bad and there you have the facts of rice....(do you know that show??)

There are many different kinds of rice, think 7,000+ varieties . Brown, white, long grain, short grain, and so many more. It can be used for a main dish, desserts and breakfast. It is easy to cook and yummy to eat.

As far as food storage is concerned a year supply for 1 adult is 50 lbs. White rice can be stored for 30+ years if stored in a cool dry place. Brown rice (unless bought in special packaging for storage) has a shelf life of 6 months. Why the difference? The essential oil that is in the brown rice causes it to become rancid over time.

Nutritional Value
Rice, white, long-grain, regular,raw, unenriched Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)

Energy 370 kcal 1530 kJ
Carbohydrates 79 g
Sugars 0.12 g
Dietary fiber 1.3 g
Fat 0.66 g
Protein 7.13 g
Water 11.62 g
Thiamine (Vit. B1) 0.070 mg 5%
Riboflavin (Vit. B2) 0.049 mg 3%
Niacin (Vit. B3) 1.6 mg 11%
Pantothenic acid (B5) 1.014 mg 20%
Vitamin B6 0.164 mg 13%
Folate (Vit. B9) 8 μg 2%
Calcium 28 mg 3%
Iron 0.80 mg 6%
Magnesium 25 mg 7%
Manganese 1.088 mg 54%
Phosphorus 115 mg 16%
Potassium 115 mg 2%
Zinc 1.09 mg 11%
Percentages are relative to USrecommendations for adults.Source: USDA Nutrient database

Thrifty Thursday

Need, want and some where in the middle.
Somewhere out there between need and want is what we are really going to get. Most of the time our wants are a glorified version of our needs.
EX #1: I need dinner. I want Sonic. (if you know me you know how joyously happy i am we now have a sonic!) What do I get a hamburger and salad made at home.
EX #2: I need a home. I want a craftsman's style ranch house on 10 acres looking out at Mount Rainier. What I get is a modest home on a quarter acre in a ward not to far from Mount Rainer.
We need food, clothing, shelter. We want dinner out, stylish trendy cloths, and a 6 bedroom house on 10 acres. What we should go for is great affordable meals with an occasional meal out, good quality becoming cloths that will last, and a modest house (I am still shooting for 10 acres LOL!!) we can afford.
You don't have to live bare bones and have nothing to be frugal. You don't need to buy low quality items to be money conscience. Be wise with the money you have. Think ahead. Buy a nice house in a good neighborhood that you can afford. Have that dinner out once a month. Buy the good quality shoes that will last more than a few months(on sale of course).
Just make sure you know the difference between need and want. Find that happy middle ground.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Whatever Wednesday

Dinner update:
I light of yesterdays post I thought it only fitting we have rice for dinner. We had what we call Kielbasa rice. 4 cups cooked rice (I add a couple bullion cubes to this while cooking.) 2+/- cups of frozen veggies and 1 cooked kielbasa. Yummy!

Garden Update:
My beans came up finally!! 3 out of 8. sad but hoping for better luck with the next planting which I did this week.

My peas are getting SO big! They have even started little vines.

Everything else is just getting bigger and bigger.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Tasty Tuesday


In keeping with our Bare-Bones Basics theme I went with rice.

I found a recipe site dedicated to rice. Is that not just AWESOME!!!

One of my favorite childhood meals was rice with raisins. I LOVED it. It wasn't until many many years later I found out that my mom only made it because we had nothing else. To this day I don't care it is comforting and delicious.

Recipe courtesy of

2 cups leftover cooked rice
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon margarine
1/4 cup raisins or dates (optional)
dash salt
dash cinnamon

In a medium sized saucepan combine the rice, milk, margarine, raisins or dates and salt. Add the raisins too, if you are using them. Stir the mixture over medium heat until it is heated through, and the margarine is melted. Simmer for a minute or two to thicken. Serve immediately, while it is hot.
This recipe is a great way to reheat leftover rice, especially if you don’t have a microwave. The rice will absorb some of the milk as it heats. If you like, you can pass a pitcher of cold milk or cream at the table to thin it out some. This recipe will serve 4 moderately hungry people, or 2 starving adults. It is easily doubled for more servings.
And in case you need a drink made from rice may I suggest:

Horchata( a Mexican incredibly wonderful beverage)I haven't had this since living in AZ. Oh SO YUMMY!!!!!!!
Thank you Ladies @ Every Day Food Storage
1 cup uncooked white long-grain rice
5 cups water1/2 cup milk (1 1/2 T. powdered milk + 1/2 Water)
1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2/3 cup white sugar

DIRECTIONS: Pour the rice and water into the bowl of a blender; blend until the rice just begins to break up, about 1 minute. Let rice and water stand at room temperature for a minimum of 3 hours. Strain the rice water into a pitcher and discard the rice. Stir the milk, vanilla, cinnamon, and sugar into the rice water. Chill and stir before serving over ice.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Money Monday

Malachi 3:10 Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.

Isaiah 58:6 Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?

Matthew 17:14 ¶ And when they were come to the multitude, there came to him a certain man, kneeling down to him, and saying,

15 Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatick, and sore vexed: for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water.

16 And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him.

17 Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me.

18 And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour.

19 Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out?

20 And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.

21 Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Survivial Saturday

What to have on hand?
Below is a list of some items you may want to have on hand in case of a pandemic.
This was the best and easiest to read list I found. To learn more go to Prepared LDS Family. I pray this wonderful lady doesn't get angry that I am posting portions of her list. she has done an amazing job on her blog. Please take the time to check it out!!

Supplies to have on hand:

  • N95 medical masks - at least 3 per person. "95" means that they keep out 95% of the airborne particles. Contact a local medical supply store, or order online. Cheaper if ordered in bulk, but even Walgreen's carries them. These will disappear quickly from the shelves in a pandemic.
  • liquid hand soap
  • hand sanitizer (one for every family member)
  • household bleach
  • Lysol® or Clorox® disinfectant
  • disinfectant wipes (plenty)
  • trash bags (plenty as there may be limited trash pickup)
  • laundry detergent (if someone in your family is ill, you will be doing plenty of washing)
  • Kleenex tissues (not fabric handkerchiefs)
  • toilet paper
  • paper towels (use instead of hand towels. We've used these in our guest bathroom for months)
  • disposable diapers for infants
  • disposable vinyl, nitrile, or latex gloves or other reusable gloves that can be disinfected
  • a supply of your prescription medications (in case you are too sick to go to the store), nonprescription drugs, and other health supplies, including pain relievers, stomach remedies, cough and cold medicines, fluids with electrolytes, vitamins, rubbing alcohol, thermometers
  • have a 2-week to 3-month supply of food at home (outside food may be difficult to obtain or you may not be able to get to the store if you are ill).
  • food for the flu such as chicken noodle soup, Sprite, 7-up, or ginger ale, saltine crackers, white rice, broth, Pedialyte for children or Gatorade, jello, etc.

See told you she had a great list!

Food Storage Friday

Barest of Bare-Bones Basics
(or pantry must haves)

The gist of this post is taken from the book Preparedness Principles by Barbara Salsbury.Chapter 8 is dedicated to Bare-Bones Basics. Here is her list:
  • Wheat and other grains
  • pasta
  • Cornmeal
  • Tapioca
  • Beans
  • Legumes
  • Beans
  • Lentils
  • Dry milk
  • Sugar or Honey
  • Salt
  • Cooking oil/fats
  • Chemical leaveners
  • Yeast
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Spices/seasonings
  • Bouillon/soup base
  • Attitude

Over the next few weeks Food Storage Friday and Tasty Tuesday will be focusing on one or more of these each week.