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March's Grocery Shopping Plans

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Radish Bouquet The Prudent Homemaker 

We have radishes, lemons, Swiss chard, beets, a tiny bit of asparagus, arugula and several herbs ripe in the garden. We should have snow peas, lettuce, and spinach lettuce ready later in the month.

 

Here are my shopping plans for the month. We'll eat mostly from the pantry and freezers.

 

Sam's Club:

Sugar

Mozzarella cheese

Whipping cream

Flour tortillas

Corn tortillas

Milk

Lawry's Chicken and Poultry rub seasoning (on sale this month)

Best Foods mayonnaise (on sale this month)

Tomato sauce (in the #10 can)

 

Winco:

Kidney beans

Milk

Spreadable margarine

Potatoes

 

Target:

Trash bags

Oxi-Clean stain remover

I'll use a $15 off $50 coupon that was in Sunday's ad for these items (I don't get the paper but my mom gave me the ad; you can get it through Target Cartwheel as well I believe). The coupon is really specific about what items apply, but I normally buy the Target brand trash bags and oxi-clean, and both of these qualify.

 

Smith's:

Ice cream: on sale plus there is another $0.49 off digital coupon on their website that I will upload first

I'll also pick up last week's Friday Freebie (a Lindt chocolate) and this week's if it is one I like. Friday Freebie deals at Kroger affiliates need to loaded to your store card on Friday and are available to pick up for 2 weeks.

 

Albertson's:

Strawberries: $0.99 a pound this week; I imagine they'll go on sale again this month too.

Clementines: $2.99 for a 3-pound bag

Albertson's is having a Monopoly game right now. My mom and the woman she takes shopping are giving me all of their Monopoly pieces, plus I have a few of my own. The game pieces are attached to coupons. I have 2 instant win coupons that I will use to pick up a free 8-ounce container of sour cream and a free 26-ounce container of salt.

 

I'll look for sales on the following items. My target price is $0.99 a pound for each of these, except for the cabbage, which I hope to find for $0.39 or less a pound:

 

Asparagus

Cabbage

Frozen petite peas

 

What sales are you looking for this month? 

 

Tagged in: Grocery Shopping
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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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Goals for February

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Sod The Prudent Homemaker

It's a short month, and I've got a ton to do!

Last month the baby cut his first teeth, and wanted to be held all the time. I didn't manage to get any sewing projects from last month done, and now most of those will have to wait until March.

In addition, we had a lot of rain (for which I am very grateful!) and also a lot of wind. I didn't finish pruning the trees, so I need to prune and spray dormant oil (rather quickly, as the buds are close to opening!) 

Our last frost date is February 15th, which makes February our busy spring planting time.

I've made the decision to remove most, if not all, of my espaliered apple trees. Despite reading that the varieties I chose did well in hot areas, most have not flowered. In addition, they have decided to grow away from the wall, and are taking up precious space in the center of the garden bed. This is an additional plan I've made to my original plans for the garden for the year, but it's one I've been debating for several years. Removing them will allow me to plant something else there, making for a more productive garden.

The weather is beautiful (in the 60's and 70's!) so working outside is a pleasure.

 

Garden Goals:

1. Replace sod in a few areas in the garden

2. Manure lawn (spread manure with manure spreader and rake it in)

3. Finish pruning fruit trees

4. Spray fruit trees, bushes, and vines

5. Fertilize fruit trees, roses, and berry bushes

6. Plant seeds in the garden every week for food and flowers

7. Repair leaks in the drip lines

8. Purchase more asparagus plants for the garden

9. Purchase tomato plants 

10. Cement column in the garden

11. Use Liquid Nails to attach garden urn to column

12. Plant roses when they arrive (the replacements from the ones that didn't make it last year)

13. Run new drip lines in areas where the old lines need to be replaced

14. Remove espaliered apple trees

15. Remove grass that is growing in garden beds

 

Sewing Goals:

1. Make birthday presents for two daughters

2. Embroider new labels for towels

 

Personal Goals:

1. Lose 4 pounds. I know it's a short month, but I also know that if I'm diligent with watching what I eat, I can achieve this goal. The semi-annual garage sale I go to is April 8th, and I want to be at my goal weight by then so that I can buy clothes for myself in a new size.

2. Study French every day

3. Watch some videos to learn new things

4. Read 2 books on French culture: The Bonjour Effect and Bringing up Bébé, both of which I requested from the library

 

 

Tagged in: Goals
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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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