Sunday, August 20, 2017

Prepping and the Solar Eclipse

Imagine my surprise when I saw an article online where local officials in Idaho were advising residents to prep.  Be prepared.  Be prepared for shortages.  What you talking about Willis?  Well so many out of towners are flocking to these states that officials are expecting shortages of food, water, gas and even the possibility of grids going down due to huge demands.  I was shocked to see a line of traffic on the interstate.  Completely stopped bumper to bumper.  All I can say is wow.  I have to be at my desk in the cubefarm so I won't be able to "see" it.  But all of this talk makes me wonder-will our computers work?  I think so and I sure hope so.  But mostly this makes me think that being prepared is a good thing and not just for some cataclysmic event that will bring down nations.  I mean, emergency funds are being prepared.  Full tanks of gas are being prepared.  Having enough bathroom tissue is being prepared.  It doesn't have to mean having enough food to feed your family plus your neighborhood for months on end but if that is where you feel comfortable go for it.  Just don't go into debt doing it.

What will you be doing during the eclipse and where will you be?

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Sunday, August 13, 2017

Cleaning Supplies

Okay master frugalistas out there.  What are your tried and true really good cleaning products?  I'm on the fence with vinegar and water.  I don't know, something about it just doesn't do it for me.  It's not the scent because I do add essential oils.  It just doesn't seem clean.  I know I know I'm coo coo for cocoa puffs but we all have our little ways now don't we?

Do you buy or make your cleaning products?  If you buy them do you use name brand or generic?  I know that CTMom buys some from the Dollar Tree.  I did buy some of the automatic dish washer detergent from the Dollar Tree and I have to say it did a good job.

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Frugal Festive Christmas Party Ideas Needed

This year I want to step outside of my comfort zone and actually have a few people over at Christmas.  Not for a formal Christmas dinner but more of a little friendly get together.  My idea so far is to watch Elf while we eat and just relax.  I need some ideas for snacks.  I'm thinking it will be a small affair, maybe 10 of us total.  So if you have any recipe ideas please share!

I'm trying to plan and be prepared so it doesn't slip up on me before it's too late.

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                   I kind of like this photo.  It's very cute.  Seems doable.  What do you think?

Saturday, August 12, 2017

I Survived My First Week at My New Job

Whew boy it's a lot to learn.  I don't think I've even scratched the surface but..................I have like it.  My 2 coworkers seem very nice and helpful.  It's got to be tough on them since both of them have been there forever and then here comes a newbie slowing them down.

So what is new with ya'll?  Any new exciting frugal things going on in your lives?

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Stockpile, Abundance and Waste

Kind of heavy, eh?  While I was brushing my teeth this morning, these thoughts popped in my mind.  I am off today, thank goodness so I can relax and calm down a bit and really think about things ya know?  Well back to the toothpaste....................I stockpile food and certain items like toothpaste.  This stockpile creates an abundance plus I am very blessed to be able to stockpile in the first place.  Many people can't.  Well....................Does that abundance create waste?  Let me wax............back in the day when I was first interested in frugal living, Amy Daczyn( can't spell her name) aka The Tightwad Gazette was just coming out.  One of her principles was to see how low can you go without feeling the negative impact and toothpaste was one of her examples.  Did I put on enough to cover the whole head of the toothbrush when 1/2 of that would suffice?  As I looked at my brush I realized that yea........I am using more than I really need.  Why is that?  Is it because I have that stockpile?  Once again......let me think here.  If I truly lived on a very restricted budget and could only buy necessities and NOTHING else I think I would be much more careful with how I use my resources.  If I knew that I had another week to go until I got paid and the tube of Crest was getting low and I didn't have another waiting in the wings, yea I would make that baby last as LONG as possible.  You can use this example with all kinds of things like shampoo, lotion, water etc...........I read once where someone used only 1 bottle of dish detergent in an entire year?  How in the world did they do that?  Was it the size of the Grand Canyon?  I mean my bottle Mrs. Meyers will not last an entire year even if I carefully measured what I use.  You can only add so much water when you get to the end of it.  LOL.  So this brings me back to abundance and waste.  I can sit back and feel very self righteous and complain about the wastefulness of society until that finger turns around and is pointed right at me.  Point blank.  Do I scrap the very last drop of mayo out of the jar?  What about mustard, ketchup?  I mean is it really worth it?  Yes it is.  Do I do this?  No I don't well not most of the time.

Do I need to slow down of the stockpiling?  Perhaps I do.  Do I need to be more careful with my resources?  Yep I do.

Do you routinely eat down your stockpile and not contribute to it until it reaches a critical low or continually add to it while at the same time eating it down?

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Well Ya'll I Got a New Job!

Thanks be to God, I got a new job.  Now I am not going to throw my present employers under the bus but this job was really causing me stress and I have been ready for something else.  I have been looking for another job for a really long time.  It is with the same employer just a different department and they seem genuinely glad to have me.  Now that is something that I don't feel with my current position.  For example:  true story-back a few months ago I had bronchitis with a lingering cough.  One day my VP asked my what my prognosis was, what was I doing about it because I was disturbing him.  I go to my desk and talk to manager.  We both go back to my VP.  I tell him that his remarks hurt me and he said that I was right, he was sorry but...............I was disruptive to the entire floor. He also asked me if I inherited this problem.  Really?  I was like, well I did 2 weeks in Texas Children's Hospital in intensive care when I stopped breathing and my parents found me blue. There is probably 40-50 people on my floor.  I asked my manager who sits right beside me if I was disruptive to the department and she said no. So we really didn't come to a conclusion.  And at this time, so many people were sick that we all were coughing, not just me.  And he didn't say anything to the others.  Now I know, you may be thinking just get over it and now I am but at the time, this really made me angry.  I couldn't help being sick and if I wasn't causing my direct coworkers any problems I didn't see how I would be causing him problems especially with him all the way at the end of the floor.  Something didn't add up.  But for me, that was just the last straw.

So I start in August.  I look forward to this new adventure but I know I will also be anxious because I mean who really likes to feel like a fish out of water.  But I hope that feeling won't last long.

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Saturday, July 1, 2017

Delicious Aldi Steak

I know this photo is not very appetizing but trust me it tasted delicious.  Remember back when our Aldi closed for renovations?  Well on the last day prior to closing they had an amazing sale and the prices for meats were slashed!  Better than Micheal in the Halloween movies.

This rib eye steak was truly one of the best tasting steaks we've had in a very long time.  For me personally, the only steak I've had that tasted better can be had at The Angus Barn.  The Angus Barn is a very well known steak restaurant in Raleigh.

For sure we will buy more!

Friday, June 30, 2017

Stressed and I so Want to Go Out and Spend Money

I am so stressed with my job. I can't go into details because I have no idea of any of my coworkers read it.  But just know it is driving me crazy!  And my blood pressure has got to be out of control.
Please pray for me or if you don't pray, at least think about me.  I can't take much more.

Have a great Friday night ya'll!

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Small Aldi Run

Well today saw us going to Aldi after church for a very small run.  We did not buy any meat.  In fact, we need to shop from our freezer to use up what we have as we are running out of room  We don't have a deep freezer.  Just the freezer unit on top of the fridge.

I tell ya, Aldi is really picking up business in my little town.  More and more folks are discovering that you can save $$$ by shopping there.  Sure, you may find an item cheaper at another store but overall I really think they are the cheapest store in town plus they do sell good stuff.  You do have to get over name brand mentality.  Easy to do when you can save so much.

If there is an Aldi near you and you haven't gone.  I say just give them a try.  Even if you don't like it, you won't be spending much but I think you will like them.

these taste really good!

in the back behind the drinks is this package of pretzel, peanut butter and milk chocolate snack thingies.  Oh my they are good! 

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Sunday Mornings

In a couple of hours we will be with our church family worshiping our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  I am so thankful that we are able to do this.  There are many countries in this world where this is simply impossible.  Believers meet in the secret quietness of their homes at great risk so being able to do this publicly is quite amazing.

Our church is not perfect because it is filled with sinners with me being no better than anyone else.  Sure there are folks there that get on my nerves just like I'm sure I get on their nerves but hey we are human.  We really are no better than anyone else.

So I've got to get ready to go meet some friends.  Talk to ya'll later!

this is part of the front of my church-the education building and gym are to the left

this is part of the sanctuary-there is one more area to the left with pews

A Frugalista Dream Come True

I am not exactly a frugalista but I am on the road!  Ha ha.  For you regular folks this next suggestion will come at no surprise but for someone who is at the beginning of their frugal journey take note!

The public library can be one of your very best frugal habits.  I don't know about every state but NC requires an ID to get a card.  Give them your name, address and email and VOILA you get a card.  I mean how simple can that be people?  Just think at what is at your fingertips!   Books, magazines, books on tape, newspapers, programs that sometimes have some pretty awesome authors!  For you mystery fans out there how about having Margaret Maron show up-huh?  You get to keep your book for 2 weeks.  You can roam around and look to your hearts delight.  It's like window shopping but it's so much more than that.  And then guess what..................sometimes they can get a book for you from another state so that makes it even better.

And it's all FREE!!!!!!!!!!! It doesn't get any better than that.  I like going to the library.  One of these days I think I may just fall asleep in their comfy chairs. It's so peaceful because it is quiet.  I don't know about you but I crave quietness.  

You aren't an avid reader?  So what!  Go out there and check out a book on a subject you love.  Sports, politics, faith, mysteries, biographies the list goes on and on.  I promise you this is a habit you won't regret and did I mention that it is FREE!!!!!!!!

You can visit countries and solve mysteries all from the comfort of your couch.  Just think about it.  It's a rainy day.  A bit cool.  Make a cup of hot chocolate, get a blanket and your book and get on that couch.  Let that book take you away.  Become your own Jessica Fletcher!  

This is my library.  Photo courtesy of

Let's Try These Pictures Again

I am not computer savvy at all.  Let's try uploading these pics again.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Vacation Time

So we have been on vacation this week and LAWD have mercy is it needed.  It just feels so wonderful to not HAVE to get up at 5:30 and work for someone else.

Where did we go?  I'm glad you asked.  We went to South Carolina, near Pawley's Island, just south of Myrtle Beach. Myrtle Beach is just way too busy.  Too many people and too commercialized.  You can't go 5 feet without a restaurant or one of those shops that sells cheap beach stuff, nothing over $5.99.  For me it cause stimulation overload.  The noise and traffic.  UGH!!!!!!

So Litchfield Resort is simply wonderful.  We booked this a few months back so the prices were really reasonable and I saved up for it so even though we charged the room, it is paid for.

The weather was really nice.  Hot of course but not too bad.  Nice and breezy especially at night.  It was almost cold when we went to the beach Wednesday night to watch the waves.

We didn't scimp out on anything but we also didn't go shopping.  We ate 1 meal a day at dinner and we ate good.  One night at Quigleys, one night at Pastoria 811 and one night at Habenero's.  All meals were really good.  Quigleys was especially relaxing.  We saw our one and only alligator there.  That is the one thing the hubster wanted to do was to see an alligator.  Mission accomplished.  LOL.  He really was quite cute swimming around and looking at us and the others.

We spent one day at the beach and one day at the pool.  We rent an umbrella at the beach and beach goers must think I am a vampire because I cover myself with towels even under that umbrella.  I do tan well but.........I don't want to burn because some of my medications don't mix well with sunlight.  Plus I really don't enjoy sitting on a towel cooking myself under the hot southern sun for hours on end.  Then we rent a cabana at the pool.  It is lovely.  It has a ceiling fan and televison.   All of the comforts of home whilst a few feet away from cool relief.  AHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So now we are back to reality.  Just Friday, Saturday and Sunday then back to so called real world.

I did have a light bulb moment in our room.  We stayed at the Seaside Inn, the rooms were quite small and kind of dark..............I would recommend them to have more light.  But I digress.  Packing up to come back was that light bulb moment.  Just looking at what all we packed was really distressing.  Did we need to bring all of this stuff?  Nope..........Do we need all of this stuff?  Nope..........Did we use all of it?  Nope.................Why did I pack it?  heck, why did I buy it in the first place?  So while I will never be a true minimalist, it sure caused me to question my buying habits.  Gosh I kind of thought I was doing good or at least better than what I used to be but this situation hit me between the eyes.  I found packing up to leave causing me a bit of anxiety.  That got me thinking.............having choices can be a great thing.  This dish detergent is cheaper than that one kind of thing but sometimes having too many THINGS to choose FROM can be daunting.  Do you agree?  Take I need a closet full of clothes or could I be happier with a few chosen pieces that go with everything else?  While walking one day at the beach I listened to a podcast by the Minimalists and clutter was their first episode.  Cleaning out their closets, trimming down their wardrobe was one of the first things they did when they decided to take this path.

So here are a few photos of our 3 days in SC:
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met this cutie on our beach day.  His name is Kenu and yes he is wearing sunglasses.  
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We went to see the movie The Mummy one night at this really nice shopping center that had horse drawn carriages.  Isn't he a beauty?
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Our cabana looked like this
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Majestic looking isn't he?
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the way back to Raleighwood
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Hello Gtown!

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that one alligator

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Sunday, June 11, 2017

Everyday Frugality

To someone that is new to living within or below their means frugality can appear to be boring or deprivation.  They may think they have to immediately grow all of their own food, make all of their personal hygiene products, read by candlelight at night...........well you get the picture.  Now to be fair none of these practices I just listed are bad in any way shape or form but to the newbie and to some goldie oldies they can be a tad bit "extreme".

To me, it's more about the everyday frugality.  Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without seems much more appealing and easier to accomplish.  Cutting up the toothpaste tube or putting your bottle of lotion upside down to get those very last bits takes no energy whatsoever.  It takes perhaps 10 seconds to perform those tasks.   Bringing your lunch to work instead of going out.  Eating out less as a whole will save you a TON of money.  Scratch cooking saves a ton-this is an area that I suck at.  Sorry, just being honest ya'll.  If you don't have allergies, hanging out your laundry will save on the electric bill.  Mending clothes instead of throwing away or buying new pieces.  Combining several errands to make only 1 trip in the car.  Turning lights off when you leave the room.  Oh my the list goes on an on.  But you get my drift right?  It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure this stuff out ya'll but it does take patience and discipline especially if you've been used to buying whatever you want, whenever you want and using credit cards when you don't have the funds.  It 's going to take a few months to see more wiggle room in your budget.  Once you see more money than month you will be hooked.  It gets exciting to see your savings account balance go up while your debt goes down.  It can be fun to make a game out of it-you know like let's see how long I can make this tube of toothpaste last or how many times will I use my towel before I get a new one?  You may find that you have a gift of cooking great tasting meals with nary a box on the counter.  Heck you may find that you and your family love your homemade desserts better than anything old Betty or Duncan can whip up.  You may find out that you love to garden.  It may become therapeutic after a hectic day at work.  And for sure it will be so exciting when you bite into that first tomato or bell pepper.  You will feel such a sense of pride and accomplishment that nothing else can touch.

What are your everyday frugal habits?

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a sample of my everyday frugalness-using up candles and the scraping every bit of this expensive cream out of this jar.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Almost There

So........we have $1424.29 to go until we reach the amount in the old emergency fund that makes me more "comfortable".  Notice I said comfortable, not totally satisfied but comfortable.  I kind of added up what our base expenses are plus stuff like groceries, prescriptions etc for a 6 month time frame.  Hopefully then we will be able to go full throttle on the last debt-my car loan but............and there is always a but isn't there?  But anyhoo..........................I then want to start funding some expenses that will be coming up like we will need appliances to replace our original ones, we will need a new driveway, a new roof and stuff like that.  I have spoken with the hubster about this and told him I really don't want to finance any of this stuff but pay in cold hard cash.  We will see if that will actually happen.

Then, of course, I have been hearing of layoffs.  My friend's place of employment is laying off and I know of others as well.......................Have you heard of any layoffs?  Have these layoffs happened to you or a family member?

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

I've Created an Aldi Monster!

So let's go back a year or so ago when Aldi opened in our little town.  Dear hubby wasn't exactly enthused with the notion of shopping there.  It got worse when I bought some kind of produce that went bad, really bad really quickly! 

Now-the tables have turned.  I'm not sure exactly when but now he is an Aldi person.  He started going with me and seeing just how low a lot, not all, of their prices are.  Each time he was a little more impressed until now if we see something at another grocery store his reaction is "it's cheaper at Aldi"!!

I laugh at him every time he does this.  It simply cracks me up.  Now Aldi is his favorite grocery store!!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Grocery Shopping, Meal Planning, Coupons and Shopping Apps

Do they go hand in hand?  Do you make a meal plan then shop accordingly or do you shop the sales and make a meal plan from what you purchased?

I think both have their pluses.  I know that some people make really detailed plans and shop ONLY for those items to make sure they have 3 meals plus snacks and drinks  a day.  I also know some people really shop to restock their pantries because they know what their family likes and eats.  

This brings me to coupons and shopping apps.  Do you coupon?  Do the stores in your area double your coupons?  Do you use any type of shopping apps?  Budget Girl, a youtuber that I highly recommend you watch, price matches at Walmart using a program called Deals to Meals.  Now the Walmart in my area does not price match.  They do offer a price catcher that promises to check their rivals to see if they offer a cheaper price and if they find a product cheaper then you get that credit and you can put that credit on a Walmart e gift card.

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So is there method to your madness?