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Last Week's Frugal Accomplishments

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Apple Blossoms The Prudent Homemaker

Dorsett Golden Apple Blossoms

I transplanted a potted pomegranate tree that I had bought last fall into the raised bed (where the espaliered apples used to be). It can get larger in this spot than in a pot and give us more fruit.

I transplanted the lettuce seedlings from the same pot into the raised bed.

I found three tiny lettuce plants that had self-seeded in the rocks next to our driveway. I dug them up and transplanted them to the raised bed.

I used rainwater that I collected in buckets last weekend to water the garden.

I placed jars over my artichoke seedlings to help them to grow faster.

I harvested lettuce, arugula, radishes, Swiss chard, green onions, parsley, and garlic chives from the garden.

I sewed a few gifts for my daughter for her birthday using fabric, elastic, and ribbons I had on hand.

I used boxes to wrap her gifts that I purchased last year at Christmas. They are pretty white and gold boxes that I can reuse at each birthday, and just tie them shut with ribbons. 

I read two borrowed books.

Iris The Prudent Homemaker

White Wedgewood Iris in the White Garden

 

What did you do to save money last week?

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Snow Pea Vines The Prudent HomemakerSnow Peas in Bloom

I picked lemons from the garden.

I cut a few spears of asparagus and a little lettuce from the garden.

I cut Swiss chard from the garden.

Apple Blossoms Buds The Prudent Homemaker

Dorsett Golden Apple Blossoms

We removed ten non-producing apple trees from the garden.  I have one remaining apple tree now (Dorsett Golden, pictured above).

We bought some new dirt in bulk from the nursery to put in the bed. We picked it up ourselves in our trailer (the one my husband made) and lined the trailer with a free tarp my husband had (via Craigslist). Picking it up ourselves saved the delivery fee.

We dug up and moved the previously espaliered Asian pear tree to the bed to grow as a small (but no longer espaliered) pear tree. The pear was being overshadowed by the fig tree and had stopped producing; it should give us some fruit in the new spot next year.

Almond Blossoms The Prudent Homemaker

Garden Prince Almond Blossoms

I purchased a self-fertile almond (that only gets to 15 feet) on sale to plant there too. It will take about 3-4 years before I can harvest a good-sized crop from it.

I received two free bags of fertilizer at the nursery using their coupons for free fertilizer with the purchase of vegetables and herbs (I purchased some larger pepper plants and tomato plants this year, with the hope of having more to harvest before the heat comes in and the plants stop flowering).

I purchased a lemon verbena plant for the garden at the nursery. This is a perennial plant and it will grow quite tall, giving me lots to harvest. I picked a few leaves and made herbal tea with it. 

I made some plans for this bed, in order to make it more productive for us.

My husband and I celebrated Valentine's Day at home. It was one of two dates at home this week. We played a board game one night and a card game another night.

I bought some strawberries on sale for $0.99 a pound.  I also picked up the avocados (6 for $2) for which I had a raincheck.

I went to the library to check out some books with the children. They had a book sale and I was able to pick up a few books for our personal library for $2.25.

I listened to music on Pandora.

I studied French every day using free online sources.

We received some rain. I turned off the drip irrigation and put out buckets to collect water from the roof. I won't need to water the grass next week and I can use the water I collected in buckets to water plants in the garden. 

Two things that brought me joy this week: I saw a violet-crowned hummingbird in the garden while I was working; I also enjoyed watching the baby take his first steps!

 

What did you do to save money this past week? What joy did you find in the everyday?

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Anemone Bud The Prudent HomemakerAnenome Bud

It was 74ºF  (23ºC) here on Friday and I've been enjoying working outside in the garden.

I picked up some biographies at the library for our school studies.

I went to pick up the pork roasts on sale at the grocery store and they didn't ring up on sale. Thankfully I noticed, and the manager adjusted each roast (I bought 3) down to the sale price for me.

I got a raincheck for the avocados and raspberries that were on sale but out of stock.

I bought 10 chickens at $0.57 a pound. I cooked one and put the rest in the freezer. $32 for 10 chickens makes for a lot of really inexpensive meals!

I bought 80 pounds of potatoes at $0.25 a pound. These might last until the end of the month.

I decided not to buy any broccoli or onions when I was at the store. These were above my price points on those items (Winco doesn't have an ad, but they often have great produce prices; I just have to look when I get there). I'll keep using the onions I've dried, the last of the fresh onions we have, and we'll eat other vegetables instead (including the chard and beet greens in the garden, of which there are quite a few!)

I made black bean and corn enchiladas, black bean soup, roasted chicken, scalloped potatoes,  a chicken and vegetable soup (using the leftover chicken and broth from roasting it), bean burritos, strawberry shortcake (using strawberries from the freezer), pork loin roast, mashed potatoes, Swiss chard (with lemon from the garden), and pizza. 

Katy Apricot Buds The Prudent Homemaker

Katy Apricot Bud

I harvested lettuce, Swiss chard, thyme, and parsley from the garden.

I sowed seeds for nasturtiums and lettuce.

I opened the house to let in lots of fresh air. The weather was beautiful enough to have the windows open all week.

I decided I wanted to add some new baskets to my garage sale list for April to replace those that are broken. I was on a local Facebook garage sale page and someone listed several baskets for sale. Most would work, but not all of them. I decided it was worth the price, and I would donate the rest. When I got there, I found out that the seller had several more baskets to sell. She allowed me to mix and match to get what I wanted, so I ended up with 9 baskets I can use for $10! I will use the shallow baskets for fruit on the table as well as some strong grape vine baskets with handles to pick fruit. We'll also use these same baskets for Easter baskets.

I purchased some used curtains via the same local Facebook garage sale page for $10. I was going to make some curtains in this exact color for a room, but for the price, I decided Ito just buy these (I may need to hem them first). I will still sew the sheers to go behind the curtains (I've already purchased that fabric).

My mom called me from a garage sale she was at to see if I wanted some of the deals she found. I said yes to several things and paid her back when she dropped them off (including a large number of children's books for $0.50 each!) 

I accepted a serger from a friend who had upgraded and no longer needed her old serger.

I laid new sod in the garden where it needed to be repaired. I had a quote to have the work done, and by doing it myself I saved over $1300. The sod cost me $88.

 

What did you do to save money this past week? What beauty did you find in the everyday?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Snowdrop The Prudent Homemaker

Spring has arrived, and it is lovely.

I planted seeds in the garden for leeks, parsley, lettuce, and radishes.

We harvested Swiss chard and beet greens from the garden for meals almost every day. 

I used two $5 off coupons at the nursery. I bought another Katy apricot tree (which was on sale) and I bought some sod to repair some places in the grass that died last year.

I accepted two hand-me-down cardigans from my mom.

I learned new expressions and words in French from Pinterest. You can find my French Pinterest board here.

I used Duolingo to strengthen my French skills.

I picked up two library books that I had requested.

My husband and I had two date nights at home.

My husband mended my broken metal Kitchen Aid whisk attachment by welding the broken part.

I enjoyed being outside while working in the lovely spring weather. I took several moments to pause and listen to the birds that were singing in the garden.

The beautiful weather has meant a start to garage sale season. My mom went to several sales and brought back a few things for my family that were on my list, including a blue and white vase. Once they added in everything they were buying and renegotiated the price, the vase was essentially free! I've put in on a shelf in the library for now to enjoy without flowers in it.

 

What did you do to save money and find joy this past week?

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Chocolate Crepe Cake The Prudent Homemaker

A stack of chocolate crepes for a birthday breakfast

 

I sowed seeds for beets, arugula, spinach, larkspur, and New Zealand Spinach. 

I cut rosemary, Swiss chard, beet greens, arugula, and chocolate mint (pictured above) from the garden. 

We received more rain, which meant I didn't have to turn on the sprinklers. I used rainwater I collected in buckets to water potted plants.

I cooked a large pot of beans in the crockpot and used them to make pasta e fagioli and white bean dip.

I practiced my French by watching videos in French on You Tube, using Duolingo, using a French/English dictionary, and reading French learning blogs.

We went to the library. I checked out some magazines, a movie (one we've seen before, but it's in Frech, and I want to listen again) and the children got some books.

What did you do to save money and find joy this past week?

 

Note: For the chocolate crepes, I added 1/2 cup of cocoa powder to my regular crepes recipe.

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Flowering Cabbage The Prudent Homemaker

In the garden this week, I planted seeds for lettuce, turnips, and flowers.

I harvested Swiss chard, beet greens, oregano, rosemary, and parsley from the garden.

We received some rain this week. In the past month, we've had some rain almost every week, and it's been enough each time to actually water the garden, so I've been able to keep from watering the grass  except for once (this time of year we're allowed one assigned day per week) and have only turned on the drip a couple of times by hand to keep my seeds wet enough to (hopefully!) germinate. I'm happy to see that water levels for Lake Mead (where we get our water) are higher than last year at this time from the rain, and I'm hoping with the rain predicted to come tomorrow that we'll see it grow even more. I'm grateful each time I don't need to water and also grateful that the rain is helping the lake rise.

I put out buckets to collect rainwater from the roof. I'll use these to water potted plants.

I gave my husband, one son, and one daughter each a haircut.

I enjoyed a video call to friends in France this week. It still amazes me that we can call without a per minute charge like what would happen on the telephone and that we can see each other, too! 

Completely by accident while looking up some information about something we had discussed, I found two new-to-me French learning sites. I spent a lot of time on them and especially enjoyed learning some new sayings (here and here).

I also learned several new French words, simply by looking up several in the dictionary to help our Facebook messenger conversations that we had both prior to and after our video call.

I made a double batch of laundry soap.

I redeemed Swagbucks for a $25 gift card to Amazon.

I continued to cook from the freezers and pantry.

 

What did you do to save money and find joy this week?

 

 

 

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