Frugal Accomplishments

Last Week’s Frugal Accomplishments

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White Strawberries The Prudent Homemaker

We picked Katy apricots, Desert Gold peaches, and white alpine (vesca) strawberries from the garden.

Apricots peaches and herbs The Prudent Homemaker 

I froze three cookie sheets full of sliced peaches, which we will use later in smoothies.

We were blessed this week to receive several meals from church members while I was recovering. One person also brought us some eggs from her chickens. (If you missed the baby announcement, check out the previous post).

I wrote thank yous on cards that I picked up several years ago for just a few cents a package.

I picked up two pieces of baby clothing in like-new condition at a resale shop.

We bought 2 pounds of strawberries at .97 a pound (there was a limit of 2, or we would have bought more). 

My mom found a long-sleeved t-shirt for Elsa at a garage sale. Since temperatures reached the upper 90’s this week, we only need something short-sleeved. Winter cut and hemmed the sleeves to be short so that Elsa can wear the shirt in summer.

My mom picked up all of my freebies from last week for me: my free 8 x 10, free chocolate, and free grapefruit juice.

Winter attended a free orchestra performance at the local high school.

When a child complained of an ear ache, I used the willow/garlic ear oil that I always use. Within a short time, her pain was gone. This oil has saved me many trips to the doctor for ear infections.

The most frugal thing I did this week was to spend time pumping to make milk for the baby. I’ve always had trouble making enough milk, and have learned that pumping is the only way that works for me to have any milk at all for the baby. Though we did end up having to buy formula, I may be able to progress to not needing any. (Yes, I have tried all of the other ways; I don’t have letdown, and usually only make a maximum of half an ounce at a time. I have also learned that I need to nurse every hour to keep my milk, in addition to pumping twice a day for 40 minutes). By the end of the week I had progressed to making 2 ounces of milk in a sitting. (For me, that is huge!) Since I have run out of milk before with another child, I know this will save me several hundred dollars a month in formula. This is the pump I use; it has saved me a lot of money over the years!

My husband and I had a date at home. We played a couple of games of Sequence.

 

What did you do to save money last week?

 

 

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94 Comments

  1. Picked plums from our fruit tree and made fruit leather in our dehydrator, bought our $10 of 60lbs produce/food (a reclaiming group) and with that food… made homemade tomato sauce from the case of tomatoes, made stuffed bell peppers for work lunches this week, made croutons from the bread. Later this week I’ll be roasting the grape tomatoes and zucchinis with parmesan.
    Picked through any produce that was icky and gave it to my egg lady, I also gave her my saved egg cartons so I can continue to get fresh eggs at a good price.
    My husband fixed one of our vehicles himself with a small purchased item.
    Enjoyed free movies at home through our roku streaming service.
    ***Congratulations on your new addition!

  2. Happy Monday morning (it is here) . Your new son is a whole week and a day old. What a wonderful time for your family this must be. I hope you are enjoying every minute.

  3. I feel for you with the breast milk. With my first my milk came in just enough to produce about 2 ounces once and that was all she wrote. I tried everything and it just didn’t work. With my son I was at least able to breast feed with formula supplementation for four months before he gave up on sucking for little gain on me and decided he was done. It was worth all the pumping and feedings though. Good for you for getting what you can. I know how much work that is!

    I have seedlings popping up in the garden and with the constant sunlight this time of year once I put some fertilizer on the seedlings they are definitely taking off better. This is my first year being dependent so heavily on seeds for the fall crop, so I’m happy to see something popping up that is definitely not weeds :).

    My list for the week can be found here…

    https://makedohomemaker.blogspot.com/2016/05/frugal-friday-money-saving-weekly-recap_13.html

  4. Your baby is so precious. You are so blessed. Such a busy time I bet for you though.
    We had a few snowflakes yesterday …the weather here in Michigan is still flipping back and forth between winter and spring.
    I covered up my strawberry plants that had bloomed and brought in potted plants when the temperature dipped.
    A couple more weeks and we will be able to plant our vegetable garden.
    You can find a list here of my other frugal ways:
    http://www.vickieskitchenandgarden.com/2016/05/my-frugal-ways-this-past-weekwhat-was_15.html

  5. Hi Brandy and all 🙂 .

    So lovely for church members to bring you some meals, we were also blessed this week by a lovely church friend dropping a meal off to us as I had food poisoning not so long ago. It was such a lovely thought indeed !.

    I had similar problems with breast milk, although I produced so much my babies were so large being premmie at 8 lb 6 oz and the other full term being 9 lb 7 oz I simply couldn’t supply enough for their healthy little appetites. They were both formula fed from around 6 weeks old. My eldest was so hungry the doctor said just to put him on solids which I did, and had no more problems. You have to go with whatever works for you and the baby. Both of my children were lactose intolerant and had to go on to soy milk as well.

    Our frugal accomplishments were –
    – Picked strawberries, silverbeet, spinach, peas and sweet corn for all teas and snacks.
    – Cooked all meals from scratch using items in the pantry and food storage.
    – Cooked all bread from scratch using items from our food storage.
    – Filled our car and empty jerry cans in the garage with fuel on the low point of the price cycle saving .11c per litre.
    – Combined errands whenever we went to town to save on fuel costs.

    Rest up and recover Brandy and enjoy the beautiful new addition to your family.

  6. Congratulations again 🙂 You have such a beautiful family!
    Last week: I started couponing again after signing up at two matchup sites to see the best deals each week and discovering my dollar store has newspapers with really good inserts! Last week I got: name brand laundry soap : some for .99 a bottle and some for 1.99 a bottle. I now have a year’s supply of laundry soap. Feminine hygiene products (18 count boxes and more) 3 were free, 6 were .98 and 3 were 1.98 (the really big box), bath soap for 1.00 a 3 pack and some body wash (retails for $5 – $6 a tube – crazy!) for 1.98. My hubby and daughter can use the body wash but I can’t. I will also probably give some to my son and daughter in law to help them out. I will be picking up bags of dog food today for .99 per bag and free tweezers (we actually do need some new ones lol). I also got three boxes of free pasta after coupons. I went to Aldi and purchased a case each of pears, peaches, peas, green beans, and carrots. I am rebuilding my stockpile/pantry and cheaply as possible. The matchup site is The Krazy Coupon lady if anyone is interested.
    I also signed up for a couple of free samples last week.
    I took all meals to work with me. Everyone else goes home for lunch so I sat in my car and read a book while I ate. It’s to far for me to go home and I enjoyed the quiet. 🙂
    My mom is having a rummage sale next month so I am preparing the items I am putting in so I can get them out of my spare room. We have a storage room to go through as well.
    I signed up for Ibotta using my husbands cell phone ( I have a “dumb” phone that only costs me $4 per month from tracfone and he has a smart phone) and have already received some rebates back and used the Walmart savings catcher and received some change back from that as well 🙂
    I watched some free shows on Youtube.
    We did the usual stuff: washed and reused baggies and jars, watched water and electricity usage, etc.

  7. I made the most delicious soup that was all ends. Mainly broccoli stems, last of celery, handful of spinach leaves, leftover onion. Crockpot with organic chicken stock, butter. Immersion blender after four hours. Added some sour cream and 1/4 cup shredded cheese. Yum! I save all vegetable ends until I have enough.

  8. My friend swears using raspberry leaf and triple alfalfa supplements helped her to produce milk. Have you asked a nursing consultant about supplements. I know there is raspberry leaf tea… not sure how much that would help, but it’s supposed to be good for multiple lady issues.

  9. I stayed home as much as possible..made all meals at home! The$129 Power Pressure Cooker was a GREAT investment!

  10. I can’t wait until peaches arrive here! Sadly we lost all of ours to a late frost, but this area has many local peach growers. After reading your baby announcement, I did not expect to see a Frugal Accomplishments post this week. You are one amazing woman. I’m excited to see my nasturtium plants coming up, along with many other flowers. I’m looking forward to all the color they will bring this year. Joining in here: http://abelabodycare.blogspot.com/2016/05/local-wildlife-accomplishments.html

  11. I’m glad you are recovering. It must be time-consuming to pump and feed the baby so frequently, but I’m sure you enjoy the time with your new little one.

    We use a lot of frozen peaches in smoothies around here. I think the kids could live on smoothies if I would let them. They are so good when it’s hot. We have a couple of months to go before peaches are ripe around here, but as our camper will be parked on a farm with a peach orchard, I intend to eat a lot of them this year!

    The most frugal thing I did this week was all of the packing and the moving of boxes to our storage unit. If I had to pay for movers to pack and move me, it would cost a lot. We had several people help us this week and are making progress. This coming Saturday is our move-out day. I’m really looking forward to being finished.

    My husband cut off a pair of torn pants for Patsy to make her some much-needed shorts. The weather is very warm and she has grown out of most of her clothing, so I was really glad he did that. I had forgotten to write that one down on my blog.

    We have successfully finished the girls’ dance recital, and it was lovely, but took a couple of days this past week. We have Patsy’s adoption on Tuesday. I’m super excited about getting that officially done. It seems like everything is happening at once!

    The rest of what we did is on my blog: https://beckyathome.wordpress.com/2016/05/16/saving-money-may-15-2016/

  12. Wow, even with a newborn you were able to get quite a bit done in the garden! Glad to hear you have lots of love and support from you family and friends. Like you, I also did not produce milk. I chose to use formula. It was expensive, but at least my child didn’t starve.

    Since I’m back full time at work, I have less time to do other things. It’s a good thing though. I’m making money instead of spending it! Here are my frugal accomplishments for this week:
    *Dehydrated the last 2 pineapples I bought on sale a couple weeks ago. I also made a batch of strawberry, peach, mango and applesauce fruit leather at the same time.

    *Meals this week included BBQ hamburgers and hotdogs with salad, breaded chicken wraps with yellow waxed beans, shepherds pie, homemade macaroni and cheese casserole with carrots, meatballs in Diana’s sauce with mashed potatoes and corn, and pasta with cheddar sausage slices and choice of red or white sauce.

    *Took a bagged lunch and insulated travel cup filled with ice water to work every day. Almost every day I ate leftovers in my lunch.

    *Grocery deals this week included 4 loaves of Texas toast bread marked @ 50% off making them $1.50/loaf (and they weren’t short dated either!), 8 bricks of cheese @ $3.97/brick, a case of 12 mangos for $7.97 (I will be cutting them up and freezing them for future use once they ripen a bit more), 2 jugs of vegetable oil @ $1.97/2L jug and 10 large cheddar sausages @ $1/sausage.

    *There was BBQ sauce on sale for $1.99 and I had 2 coupons for $2 off 1 bottle, but they were out of stock (everyone has obviously been using these coupons for the free product). I asked for a rain check for the product which allows me 30 days to get it at this price. I will look on-line for more coupons in the interim.

    *The museum I work at is starting a new volunteer “foodways” club. The focus of the club is to research and test recipes from the 19th century for the time periods of the various houses in the village. Sunday was our first meeting and they invited Dorothy Duncan, a Canadian culinary historian, to do a talk and cooking demo/tutorial for us. Dorothy has written 5 books, each of which includes historic food facts and authentic historic recipes. Those in attendance were generously offered the choice of one of her books to take home for FREE. 😀 I chose the book entitled “Nothing More Comforting – Canada’s Heritage Food”. I’m so looking forward to trying some of these recipes and learning more historic culinary skills through this club!!!

    *My daughter’s 13th birthday is on May 16th. Our tradition is to do something special for her birthday. This year my husband, Grandma (my mom) and Nana (my MIL) took her to the chocolate factory outlet in Campbellford, ON (about 40 minutes from where we live) while I attended the meeting at the museum. She was thrilled to get a nice chocolate stash all her own as part of her birthday present.;) My husband (aka my other child) was just as thrilled to buy himself some chocolate too. :p We also took her out for dinner to her choice of restaurant and the leftovers will be taken in her lunch on her birthday.

    Looking forward to reading everyone’s comments. Have a wonderful, frugal week everyone!!!!

  13. I pray that your efforts to produce milk for your son will continue to be successful and have increasing returns. Congratulations once again!

  14. I am like you and have very little milk, but with my last one my lactation specialist recommended fenugreek to help increase production and it worked! I’m sure you might have tried that but I thought I would throw it out there anyways for other lactating women:) There is nothing worse than wanting to breastfeed but not being able to especially in the early days. I hope your family settles in well with the new addition and you bounce back quickly. Elizabeth from Alabama

  15. Whoops, I guess I’ll save it on my Amazon wish list rather than assuming it was a recipe! haha Also wanted to say kudos to you for trying so hard with the breastfeeding. It was a serious challenge for me, too, with my 5 children. My third was very underweight at one point because I couldn’t supply him with enough and he wouldn’t drink anything else. It can be nerve wracking when you feel like you can’t feed your baby well.

  16. Raspberry leaf is wonderful for strengthening the uterus, period pains and back pains, but doesn’t have an effect on milk. I am actually taking alfafla (liquid chloyophyll) right now, but to build up my blood.
    I’ve tried all the supplements before and met with a lactation consultant with my third. Pumping has been the only way for me to keep my milk. I’m grateful to know what works for me; paying her was money well-spent!

  17. The children did most of the picking. I just sliced some fruit 🙂

    What fun with the tradtional cooking! It sounds wonderful!

    My daughter has almost finished her dress. She stil needs to hem it and will probably add a tuck. She’s also going to move the pocket.

    Then she will be working on sewing her straw bonnet and lining. She will make an apron as well. I think you’ll enjoy the finished product.

  18. This is why we bought formula. I know what it’s like to have babies not take a bottle, though! Thankfully he has been really good about taking the formula. I’ve never had a baby so willing to do so before. I am using a different kind than I did before, and it smells better; I can’t help but wonder if it tastes better and is why he is willing to take it 😀

  19. LOL I didn’t know the raspberry leaves were good for people too – we fed it to our nursing rabbit does (especially if they had a large litter) to help with milk production!

  20. I’m in Ohio, our weather is also allover the place here. It’s 44°F here. (W a freeze warning until 10a.) I cut wild onions out of my yard. (They were huge, a good 3ft.) I purchased bananas on 29c lb clearance and apples also. We use for snacking and make bread and sauce out of the older ones. I purchased clearanced bread for 49c a loaf. Going to make French toast. My friend gave me 4 dozen eggs from her chickens. I split w my grandma. I did really good and didn’t buy any fast food or takeout. I’ve been fighting a cold and so wanted to. A coworker gave me 2 bags of clothes that her daughters grew out of. I did purchase a few items from the thrift store. I needed longer shorts/capris. My grandma gave me some of her peppermint . I’m going to put some in this dead spot in my yard, because I know this can take over a garden. (Partly why mama pulled up for me… it was taking over hers.lol) I borrowed books and movies from the library. Our mulberries are green on our trees. They will be ready around June. I made bean burritos w salsa and cheese we already had on hand. (I had all the ingredients and froze most of them. Already used for a quick lunch.) Picked up the free candy bar from Kroger. I’m sure I’m missing something, it it’s been a good week.

  21. Congratulations again on your new wee one! I too was surprised to see your frugal accomplishment post today, you are amazing! I find you a big inspiration when I am feeling down or lazy, I realize you can do more in one hour than I do on some of my days, and I get off my lazy butt and get a few more things done.

    This past week, we ate from the pantry and baked bread. I organized my outside storage closet to increase space for outside pantry storage as well as give away unneeded items…I took two car loads to Goodwill! Both my husband and I have family “treasures” that we have held for 30 years….I finally gave 95 percent of my items away. No one left in the family who wants them and if I haven’t wanted them in my house for the past 20 years, I don’t see any reason to keep storing them for another 20. I am happy to be free of that weight! My husband still isn’t ready to give his pile of ancient treasures away but he is getting closer.

    Hope everyone has a happy frugal week.

  22. I was able to get $5 in Extra care Bucks from CVS for taking an online survey. I just combined that with $14 in ECBs I have been hoarding and used them today to buy pull-ups for the toddler, expensive dry mouth toothpaste for me, and allergy medicine for the kids. I combined it with a 25% off coupon and got 51% off my total.

    My mother was kind enough to give us some extra food: carrots, ham, bread, fruit, and milk.

    I never made enough milk myself. I would sit on the pump for 45 minutes every 2-3 hours and I would only ever get 5-15 mL on each side. I was at least able to give the kids a little colostrum, but all were fed with formula.

  23. Last week we were getting ready for my DH to go on his trip across country. I had many, many things in my pantry that we didn’t have to buy. Travel sized toiletries etc that he took with him, even a small first aid kit that I had gotten a few years ago, Free with coupons. I had stocked up on those! We have lots of travel sized items from traveling and from our hairdresser.

    We planted our garden, used some seeds from previous years and since it has rained the last couple of days that’s been frugal as no water used by me to water said garden.
    We have been eating leftovers also.

  24. Sold a wedge pillow we used only once – more space in the closet & a few more dollars.

    Picked up grounds for gardeners 3 times to use in the back perimeter bed fill. The grounds are slightly acidic, & our soil is alkaline clay, so the grounds help with both the pH & the soil structure.

    Harvested enough lettuce & spinach from the garden to fill a gallon zip baggie in the fridge for salads.

    Saved the free “trial” paper that was delivered to our neighborhood to use as weed block in the back perimeter bed. My husband also brought home another free paper for me.

    Accepted grass clippings from my neighbors again to use as mulch. I baked a rhubarb crisp to thank his family & made one for us, too. I also made rhubarb in strawberry gelatin twice this week.

    Planted chives from seed. Planted Fort Laramie strawberries in the rejuvenated strawberry bed, & discovered that a colony of ants has moved into part of the bed. It’s always something, isn’t it! I left that part of the bed empty (about a quarter of it) & will take care of the ants over this coming week.

    Continued to use the glass cloches over the squash & pole bean plants during the cool nights & removed them during the days. All of the bean & squash plants are up & growing now under the cloches.

    Used two of my three Mother’s Day gift cards to buy more Lodgestones for the edge of the back perimeter bed. It took multiple trips, since the car can only hold about 20-24 stones weight-wise, & the first rule of using a car for a truck is “don’t break the car”. On one trip, I had gone to the other side of Salt Lake City to pick up an out-of-print book that my youngest daughter wanted for her upcoming summer birthday, & stopped on the way home to pick up one of the loads, so I could get the most use from the gas. I was going right past the store. Began to set stones again as soon as the soil dried out sufficiently from the rains last week.

    Refilled all my garden water jugs from the storms over the rainy weekend at the start of this time frame.

    Continued to pull a minimum of one tree pot full of weeks each day. Some days this week I filled 4 tree pots, but most days I filled 2.

    Bought a small bottle of potassium iodide. When we lived in Idaho, we always had some on hand, but it seems to have gone by the wayside in one of the moves, so I picked up another one. It wasn’t expensive & it lasts indefinitely, so it can just sit in the back of the cabinet unless we have use for it.

  25. Congratulations on your newest addition. An herbal supplement that I have used is called “More Milk Plus” – you probably have a number of the herbs growing in your garden already. I used the liquid, and added it to water and drank it. It worked really well with one kid, not so well (but did work) with another. It did not affect the baby – just my milk production.

  26. What a little sweetie, congratulations. I had the same breastfeeding issues with both my children and I too tried everything. I found that well-intentioned people gave me a lot of advice that made me feel badly for what my body would not do. Best of luck with it; I am hopeful that your experience will be more positive!

  27. The fruit looks so delicious. You got a lot done with a newborn in the house!

    This week:
    – I worked in my garden plot for several hours. I planted my tomatoes and jalapeno starts, along with a few marigolds to help with pest control. I used some of the free mulch provided for the gardeners. I brought my lunch to the park with me that day, so I wouldn’t have to pick up anything to eat. Another gardener saw me eating my lunch remarked that, next time, she was going to bring her lunch with her too! 🙂
    – I foraged for horsetail in the park. This is used in a foot soak mixture I make for my mom.
    – I saved eggshells for the garden. I had some soup bones had been boiled to the point that they were soft. I crushed them and dried them in the oven, making my own bone meal for the garden.
    – I sewed a robe for my husband’s birthday. I already had the fabric on hand, and I used an old pattern (from 1973!) that I found at a thrift store for less than a dollar a couple years ago. The robe turned out really nice, and I gave it to my husband a week early. He was very happy with his gift.
    – My sister and I met at the park and went for a walk. I met a friend at the farmer’s market, and then we went for a coffee. I prefer inexpensive get-togethers with friends.
    – I did all the things I normally do: made kombucha, made water kefir, cooked from the freezer, put vegetable waste in my worm bin, put other food waste in the city compost bins, and cooked at home.
    – I picked a couple more roses from our bush to enjoy indoors.

    Have a great week, everyone.

  28. Congratulations on the new baby. He is perfect.
    My week was not quite as productive. The man fenced the garden. He made me a really lovely gate from scrap lumber, paint and wire fencing.
    I was unhappy with my current batch of homemade laundry detergent so I used up some older bars of homemade soup on a new recipe.
    I picked up some cheese and pork chops on special during my shift at work. Later in the week, I bought a 10 pound bag of sugar for my pantry.
    I’ve had plenty of at home work to keep me busy but that didn’t keep me out of trouble completely. I was feeling rich enough (pay cheque from the temp job was deposited) and I splurged on ice cream (on sale) chips and dip. Yah, I should have spent that money on pantry items, but I was hot and tired and, well, that’s what happened. This was followed by a couple of emotional days and trip to the dollarstore and more money spent then I wanted.
    Have a good week everyone.

  29. I also feel you on the breast milk. I only have twins (we have two sets) and I can never make enough for both babies. We have been doing well with our garden, putting in lettuce this week and peas and beans. our tomato seedings (started several weeks ago are thriving). We made the switch to vegetarian mostly (85% of the time) with some fish and eggs. Our grocery bill has gone up but the summer’s garden should help with the bill. We attended a picnic yesterday after church for our local Mother’s of Multiples club. It was a great event (despite the freezing cold-only 51 degrees in PA). The park was at terrific playground my children had never been to and they had a nice dinner. The best part was a bike path that encircled the playground and a massive hill/mound which my sons enjoyed climbing.

  30. Glad to hear you are recovering well and feeling up to posting! I, too, had issues with producing enough milk and had to put my daughter on formula.

    Frugal activities included applying a $5 Extra Bucks coupon from CVS towards an item daughter needed, driving up north to attend daughter’s graduation (cheaper than flying), packing a picnic lunch to eat on the way, and a gift of 4 kitchen towels from a friend.

  31. Thank you for sharing your challenges with nursing. The breast feeding/formula feeding issue creates so much guilt for moms. My first child couldn’t suck and had physical therapy for her first 13 months. I felt like such a failure as a mom for not being able to nurse her. I had high hopes with my second child. My thyroid crashed after he was born (I didn’t know this until he was 9 months old). I was able to nurse him for several months, but then he refused. My milk had probably changed from my dying thyroid, but at the time I didn’t know why he wouldn’t nurse anymore. I wish I could have been more accepting and gentler on myself. Is seemed as if everyone around me had such wonderful nursing stories to tell and I felt so alone.

  32. It took me 8 babies to feel less stressed about it, and even then, I had a couple of stressful days still dealing with it. I was proactive in pumping and I have been a bit more accepting of the need for formula this time, but I also know that pumping will work if I persevere. I’ve been better with insisting on a better latch from the beginning (and he’s been such a good baby when it comes to trying); I break the latch if it isn’t right and I start over.

    It’s a stressful thing, and it’s hard to be gentle on oneself. Not everyone can make milk. I’m grateful to live at a time when formula is available.

  33. Congratulations again on your new son. I am so impressed at what you are able to accomplish with a newborn in the house. You inspire me.
    The weather here has been all over the place. We were supposed to go camping this week but cancelled due to rain and cold. The voles have eaten all my lettuce, arrugula and chard, so I have replanted them in pots on the deck and in the greenhouse. So far they have left the new peas alone — fingers crossed that holds.
    I renegotiated our internet bill and got it dropped from $60 a month to $30 a month — a big help.
    I started knitting a new sweater, using yarn from one I unraveled.
    I cleaned out the refrigerator and repurposed all the leftovers so nothing was wasted — I made pizza bread out of 1/4 of a roll of breakfast sausage and some leftover spaghetti sauce and cheese, and macaroons from some egg whites, coconut milk and coconut.

  34. Nursing…sigh I remember those days as the last one over 31 years ago had to nurse ever hour. Between pumping and nursing I felt “RAW”. My mom couldn’t nurse me at all.

    I am glad everyone is doing fine.

    We have started a “habit” of talking of what we can do frugal/cut costs on Thursday mornings as that is our financial day (Hubby paycheck is in) and are getting to being out of the box or some of the ideas. This is week is to try to make Irish soda bread and see if we like it.

    the rest of the frugal week is posted on my blog.http://chefowings.blogspot.com/2016/05/frugal-weeksome-lol.html

    Blessed be you and yours

  35. I had trouble with Breast feeding as well, for many reasons. I am glad to hear I wasn’t alone!

    Frugal:

    -Cooked all meals at home.

    -menu planned, used supplies from pantry and freezer, bought only sale items, bought almost nothing processed or packaged.

    -brought home several interesting “roadside treasures.” I kept several toys for my daughter, who was thrilled, and sold two items (a bench and a bicycle). Made $70. It took me about an hour to clean the bench and bicycle, photograph them, and list them in Craig’s List. I love the spring, I live in a neighborhood where people put out the best stuff on the curb! My husband jokes that I need a bumper sticker–“WARNING: this vehicle stops suddenly for interesting trash piles!” HAHA!!

    -Frugal entertainment, on Satuday visited a beautiful public park in our town, where they have the most gorgeous gardens and old buildings. Took lots of photos. Will frame one of hobby and daughter for fathers day. Also visited the beach on Sunday. Very windy, perfect kite flying weather.

    Have a fantastic week!!

  36. I love soup. Last summer when I was ill and struggling to recover, I had soup most evenings for supper. I found it both soothing and nourishing and soon began to feel better and stronger. This soup sounds yummy to me. I always save the ‘ends’ of things and this would be a great use.

  37. Becky I love reading your blog. I’ve tried to leave comments but keep forgetting my wordpress password. I’ll have to redo that soon, but just wanted to let you know that I’ve been reading and am following it weekly now.

  38. Every now then I go a tinge green reading of the fun activities some have available. For instance that Foodways program really really appeals to me. Enjoy it!

  39. I think more women struggle with breast feeding than not. Of the three babies born in our family in a year’s time, all three tried nursing and only one managed to do it successfully. I had three children and was only able to nurse the middle one. Unfortunately I got flu, then had a major gallbladder attack followed by surgery when he was about six months and that was it. No more nursing. I didn’t produce enough milk for the other two though I tried. It’s a sure indication of your desire that you’re willing to work at it so very hard Brandy.

    I’ve enjoyed working in my yard and accomplishing a few house projects. I’m hard at it again this week. Next week I’ll have family moved in with me and I don’t expect to much more than housework and survive, lol. Here in our empty nest years we lead a very quiet life overall and to have an almost 2 boy in the house and his mama and daddy will be a shake up for sure. Fortunately it’s all temporary, we just don’t know how long temporary is at the moment. This is my post for last week:
    http://bluehousejournal.blogspot.com/2016/05/my-frugal-week-balancing-acts.html

  40. So glad you were able to get a date night with your husband and that you have had so many helping hands while you recover!

    I wasn’t able to nurse one of my twins (he never learned how to latch at all!) and my other child stopped nursing at 6 1/2 weeks (long story!). I, too, was grateful for formula! My great uncle was fed cows milk with corn syrup added when he wasn’t able to nurse as an infant! That thought terrifies me! We did buy our formula at Sam’s Club in bulk – it was 1/2 the price that it was at the grocery or drug store. That saved us a bundle.

    Enjoy your new little one, Brandy!
    Lea

  41. Wow, I am amazed that you are able to keep up with nursing every hour and pumping twice a day. I have very low milk supply with my babies too, and after my 2nd I gave away the pump because it just wasn’t worth all the time it took (especially with little ones running around) and for so little result. Are you waking up every hour at night to nurse too?

    Unless the baby has food allergies, formula isn’t that expensive at Sam’s Club, especially when they are smaller. I think we paid about $30-60/month depending on how much I supplemented. Only my 3rd son was able to nurse exclusively, and I didn’t do anything differently with the others.

  42. So, do you buy a raspberry leaf supplement or do you make a tea with raspberry leaves from your garden? I have tons of raspberry bushes and would love to know if I can put the leaves to good use! Thank you in advance for any information.

  43. Broccoli stalks are also amazing in stir fry dinner. Cut them very small, put them in early with the garlic and onions. So good!

  44. Elizabeth,
    I know a lady who had great success with fenugreek as well. Brandy has probably tried it, but other moms may not know!
    I did not and I had a terrible time nursing. My milk dried up at 4 months. My doctor attributed my troubles to going back to work ten days after the c section, but I didn’t really have a choice.

  45. Ditto on the Fenugreek. My daughter used it successfully. She smelled like maple syrup for a while but the baby didn’t mine 🙂 Search on Pinterest for “Nursing Cookies”. They contain brewer’s yeast as well as oatmeal which are supposed to increase production. Fennel essential oil applied directly to the breasts, 1-2 drops, 3-4 times per day is also supposed to help with production. Please know that your baby is getting more than the pump is. Two ounces only a week post partum is amazing. Truly. His little stomach is still tiny.

  46. Mable,

    I buy raspberry leaves chopped in bulk from San Francisco Herb Company. Raspberries don’t grow well here; the plants tend to burn to a crisp. I make a tea with them. I’ve found them more effective than ibuprofen to relieve period pains, and as they increase your iron, that’s a bonus, too!

  47. Thanks for the heads’ up about Sam’s Club. I was wondering how much it was there. When I did formula with my second, I was paying $200 a month, on sale with coupons. He’s 12 now 😀 I was wondering what the price was at Sam’s. If I end up needing to buy more, I definitely plan to look there. Thanks for the reminder!

  48. I started couponing again this week too! I switched jobs this year and it fell by the wayside, but truly, managing food expenses “pays” very well and I need to get back in the swing of things.

  49. This week I felt like I was able to get back on the bandwagon of frugality with a few little things:
    -I worked extra days the past 2 weeks and consequently, my paycheck was higher than we budgeted for May! So, now we have extra money to work with. I am really grateful for this as the medical bills from my surgery are starting to pour in!
    -Both of my daughters earned enough Accelerated Reader points this year to qualify for both a pizza party at school and a special lunch in a nearby town. Two librarians took the 11 students who earned this award out to eat at a local restaurant. So, for two days I didn’t need to pack my daughters any lunch.
    -Had a dinner party at my house for 9 people and almost everything I served I had in my pantry. The only thing I had to buy was some smoked chicken halves for those who eat meat.
    -Ate most meals at home
    -Garage Sales are starting here and I went to a subdivision sale I have been going to for years. I came in $10 dollars under budget and found some wonderful items! A few things went into my stash for stockings at Christmas, some nice books to add to my ’25’ books we read starting Dec. 1st, and the best finds of the day were 2 things that have been on my garage sale list for a long time…A brand new Vera Bradley backpack to wear on day-trips and 4 pairs of Victoria Secret 2-piece pajamas in perfect condition. Winter pajamas have been on my list for a long time, so I am thrilled to have them.
    -My husband and I attended one of his work events in a nearby metropolitan area. It was a night with the ‘Tenors from the Opera’. We enjoyed wonderful music, cocktails/appetizers and a full dinner- all for free! Plus, my husband wore his tux and I dressed in formal wear.
    -numerous neighbors gave their time and helped our family lay mulch in our flower beds
    -my parents had us over for dinner after church Sunday and sent us home with leftovers
    -borrowed books and movies from the library
    -said ‘no’ to many things 🙂
    -did all the usual: turn off lights, compost, recycle, wash and reuse baggies, ran dishwasher at night, heat off-windows open
    Now to read everyone’s comments. Have a great week!

  50. Congratulations on your new son, and I am happy to hear you are both recovering. That delivery could not have been easy with him so big already! My babies were 6 pounders, and I thought that was quite enough.

    My frugal week was filled with mostly ordinary things. The weather has been awful–cold and damp. I did get outside to weed one nice day, wearing a zipped up sweatshirt the whole time. Sunny but cold. No thoughts of putting plants in just yet, although the lilacs are starting to open now, and I still have tulips and some mini-iris that tend to bloom early. Those are bright yellow and so cheerful on our grey days.

    I cooked for all but two meals–husband brought subs home one night, and my sister took me out to lunch one day. We try to get all three sisters together about once a month, although it had been longer this time. Ate up all those leftovers, too–except for a little leftover meatloaf that I forgot was there–have to check the date tomorrow but I think it might be too late. We did eat it two nights already! I also make almost all our bread, make a double batch of your granola every week, and cook most things from scratch. One exception is salmon portions with sauce from Sam’s Club. A bit expensive but we splurge once in a while–they are quite good. I have not baked much lately as we have had an excess of sweets in the house from birthdays and such. We make up for splurges by stretching other meals–I only package 12 oz of ground beef for the two of us for a meal, and it always makes two dinners and one lunch portion at a minimum. Sometimes two dinners. I also weigh out grated mozzarella for our pizzas, and I portion-control ice cream by serving it in regular cones–it is difficult to get much ice cream into one without breaking it. I NEED portion control. I gained 4 pounds over the winter, and I have to watch before they multiply! Warm weather and more weeding should help, too.

    Mending included hemming a pair of work pants for my husband and re-stitching yoga pants for myself so I can continue wearing them. I also achieved more frugal yoga classes: our former instructor retired, and our new instructor was willing to teach at the same time twice a week instead of once. My membership covers all classes, so now I get two a week for the same price! Also, the instructor had to re-certify to teach yoga, and learned a wonderful number of new approaches and exercises–we are all loving the new classes. The class I attend is CHAIR YOGA (for seniors) which means we do much of it sitting in a chair, or holding on to it from behind. If you think this is not much of a workout you are so WRONG! The new instructor includes a lot of isometric exercises, and she gets us sweating from just tensing and releasing muscles without even moving our arms and legs! SO pleased with this.

  51. Marivene,

    What do you do to get rid of the ants. I have colonies taking over my yard without much success.

  52. I’ve been lucky with breast feeding my first who is 8 months. We supplemented the first two weeks only because I needed the sleep at night to recover from a prolonged labor that ended in a cesarian. But I have donated. If it is something you are interested in, Facebook has a group called Eats on Feets (and I think Human Milk for Human Babies is another, but I hate that name). Its a group for women to give/ask to receive breastmilk. They both have pretty strict rules on payment (no payment allowed, but its generally good etiquette to replace bags for your donor), so it can be an inexpensive option if it is important to you.

    As for thrifty, I found that that Old Navy put all their online returns on their 75% off defective rack, so if you wear tall, petite, or plus, you can score cheap clothes. I got a pair of work pants for $4. My pre-pregnancy oants don’t fit, even though I am back to the same weight, and I have to wear business casual to work. $4 is cheaper than they sell pants in our thrift stores.

  53. It’s funny how I felt so alone when I had problems breastfeeding my 6 kids. Everyone around me had no problems or too much milk!
    The weather is really weird this spring. It was real chilly last week, 66 degrees on Saturday, Rainy and cold for your bones on Sunday and snow today (we made the national news 7.5 inches is some parts of our county). Tomorrow we are supposed to be in the upper 60’s again. Because of all this weather nonsense some are starting colds yet again.
    Have been eating most meals from home. Hubby finishes the leftovers for lunch the next day. Bought daughter a prom dress at a discount store for $8 and brought it to a seamstress to add straps for another $8. My college age daughter just got her first apartment. I am proud of all her thrifty accomplishments in this endeavor. I am trying to share some of my extras with her. I am also pulling from my pantry to give her a head start. Trying to buckle down on my budget. May have to adjust the numbers in some categories. Right now I have 5 constantly hungry kids who are eating through my food budget too quickly. Also hubby is experiencing spring fever right now where his wants have become needs lately. Preplanning expenses have become nonexistant right now.I can afford it but it seems like money is flying out really quickly right now. I don’t like that feeling because I know I have to replace a vehicle this year.
    Congratulations for the new baby! May you continue to recover quickly.

  54. Thank you. I’m glad you enjoy it. I enjoy writing it. I have learned so much by doing it, both about myself and about computers. My niece who encouraged me to start blogging and got me going last October should be proud! I literally knew nothing about how to blog, and still have SO much to learn, but I’m having a ball doing it. (I had to ask Brandy how to leave my information on a comment–thanks) If you grew up with computers I’m sure this seems so easy to you, but I did not, and it’s encouraged me to try other things. I was so proud of myself because I figured out how to create a new email account for us because we are moving. (All you younger ones, don’t laugh too loud) When I was in school, computers filled entire rooms. Now, you can hold one in your hand! I still marvel at what can be done and all the changes I’ve seen in my lifetime, and I’m only in my 50’s. I can’t imagine what the future holds!

  55. Kudoes to Winter and all the remaining children for knowing to step up and give extra help during this time ….. we are all looking forward to seeing your costume Winter. and to Brandy, who didn’t miss a blog even though giving birth and all that entails …
    you are a great example! best wishes to all, Ann Lee S.

  56. My frugal accomplishments:

    I worked 9 hours over time.

    I received a box of samples in the mail.

    I combined errands on Saturday. I stopped at the library to pick up a book I had on hold and bought a couple of books at the book sale. I went to the mall to use the three $10 JCPenny coupons and 20% off. I got 3 skirts for a total of $14.94 and paid using the gift card I bought last week. I went to Sports Authority to spend my $10 birthday coupon and got 4 protein bars for $1.96 OOP. They have an expiration date of February 2017 so I put them away for my son’s Halloween basket or Christmas stocking. I stopped at Baskin Robbins and got my free birthday scoop of ice cream.

    I went to CVS and got the free toothpaste.

    I got a free Family Circle in the mail.

    I organized our small chest freezer and made a map/list of what is in the freezer.

    Have a great week everyone!

  57. Lisa in Maine, it depends of your situation. There are several ways:

    If the ants are in an area where no food plants are growing, I agitate the colony with a shovel or a pitchfork, then use ant spray. I do this repeatedly over several days.

    When the ants were coming under the fence line to the south, right next to my grapevine, I obviously did not want to use spray there. Ants hate coffee grounds (the caffeine does them in), so I dumped 4 of the silver grounds for gardeners from Starbucks right along the fence line, about 3-4 inches deep, the length of the fence. It did smell like coffee over there for quite a while, but it did not affect the flavor of the grapes at all (I worried that it might), & we had the best yield ever – the grapevine loved the grounds!

    The first year we moved into the house, I killed 22 nests of yellow jackets & wasps, & 25 colonies of ants. Many of the any colonies were in the front, next to the driveway (& under it), & we had very young children in the neighborhood who put anything & everything in their mouths. To kill those, I poured rubbing alcohol in a ring around the colony when they came up – usually in the evening, then slowly poured the alcohol over top of the ants, then lit a match. No pesticide residue for curious, unsupervised toddlers to put in their little mouths. When we had the driveway mud-jacked in late October a few years ago, that also destroyed quite a few of the colonies by filling the spaced they had dug out under the driveway with concrete slurry.

    I also used alcohol to destroy colonies in what would become the garden that first year, because I did not want pesticide residue there, either.

    If I see a colony beginning the garden now, I dig in lots of grounds right there & use a pitchfork to repeatedly turn over the dirt. Eventually, it brings up the white eggs, & then the birds take care of the rest. Rototilling works to break up a colony as well, in the garden.

    I have tried the mixture of sugar & borax as well. It works ok, but it is hard to keep neighborhood cats out of it.

    When we lived in Idaho, we had a huge ant colony move in right next to the rhubarb plants. My son & one of his friends used some tiny firecrackers to destroy that colony around the 4th of July. They were in their early teens, & poked holes with various implements, then dropped a lit firecracker into the hole. The firecrackers were so small, they only produce puffs of dust when they went off, but the concussive affects destroyed the colony very quickly. It was definitely a “one & done” treatment. The colony never came back to that location, but fireworks are more regulated here in Utah.

    Our oldest daughter has 10 acres, & has used a shovel to agitate a colony, then move a shovel full of ants from one colony to another. If they are not part of the same colony, they will destroy each other. A few of her chickens will also eat ants, but not all of them will.

  58. I am so excited to have this opportunity. We have 3 houses, one with an open fire pit for cooking, one with an open hearth and one with a wood cook stove/oven. Since I’m usually in the General Store, I haven’t had much experience with cooking in the village. I hope to learn and develop my rustic cooking skills from those who are far more experienced.

    We also have a hotel that has a wood stove/oven and a traditional brick bake oven. Several people expressed interest in learning how to use the bake oven, which hasn’t been used in years. That will be very exciting if we can get it going!!!

  59. Congratulations again on the new addition!

    This week:
    I tried to cut my hair at home and failed miserably. To fix my hairy situation I used an $8 haircut coupon from Great Clips.
    Mr. Picky Pincher and I went on vacation to a cottage in the hill country. We grilled burgers and a whole chicken on the grill (we don’t have one at home) and will use the meat in the coming weeks.
    Mr. Picky Pincher also made a stock from the barbecued chicken bones. Yum!
    We tried not to buy any meat this week–and accidentally failed after putting a link of fancy sausage in the cart. Oops!!
    We shopped at the local farmer’s market and bought cucumbers. Our homemade Picky Pincher Pickles will be ready on Friday and I am thrilled. 🙂

  60. For both of my boys we used the Sams club members mark formula, diapers and wipes also. I was unable to nurse with either of them. It saved us bundle. Formula in the U.S. Is highly regulated so don’t feel apprehensive about using the store brand. One of the perks of bottle feeding is it allows for others to help 😀 Best of luck, and as long that baby is fed and loved it doesn’t matter if it comes from a bottle or you. In the end you are doing the best for your child and that is what matters. Congratulations and welcome little one!!

  61. Congratulations on the birth of your little one! What a great blessing for you all! !!

    We are hardly even planting here between the cold and rain. Someday!

    I planted potatoes a week and half ago, hoping they haven’t drowned. Not sure how well they will turn out as the spot is shady too. Beginners mistake.

    Other accomplishments big and small:
    Lots of leftovers from son’s 1st communion party. BBQ chicken made for great pizza! 🙂
    Ibotta paid for most of the party.
    Carpooled for scout campout and partnered with other small troops on food so everyone could save $.
    Random duplos in the house (2 years later! ) became a door prize for church carnival game. Likewise with wooden rosary for preschoolers and packs of stickers. It’s all in the packaging. 🙂
    I challenged my kids to do the ame with other small toys.
    Looking into summer reading programs and activities at the library.
    Redid my work schedule for summer to avoid day camp fees.

  62. Thank you so much for the information on killing ants! I have struggled with a few things but like you do not want the residue from chemicals. I have tried cornmeal, and it has worked fairly well. The ants think it’s food but it kills them. I’m going to try the coffee grounds and the rubbing alcohol.

  63. + Returned cans and took in coins to pay for groceries this week – milk was $1.67 and 8 oz blocks of cheese were 10 for 10 with the 11th free! They were substituting Kraft for the store brand of cheese since they were out + they gave me a rain check with no limits! Celery was also in the same 10 for 10 sale as was frozen waffles. They ended up owing us $7.69 🙂
    + made all meals at home and took leftovers in to work with me.
    + I almost put my tomato starts out but decided to hold off another week – good thing! We had white out snow on Sunday morning! I was NOT impressed :/ Peas made it thru the cold snap just fine but I still have yet to see a single lettuce or carrot seed sprout and I have no idea what’s going on.
    + Gave the beagle a bath at home – I have to do the Danes at work where they can be tied cornered in a kennel (and still have warm water).
    + Repaired 2 dogs toys and 2 dog blankets – the pup has discovered there is stuffing inside that is waaaay too much fun to pull out. I also repaired 2 of my shirts and put elastic in a pair of jeans.
    + Divided Sedums and started planting them around my raised garden beds to hopefully pull in some pollinators later in the season.

    I can’t wait to see Winter’s dress – my daughter made a Henry the 8th’s court gown which she exhibited at the 4-H fair. I think every seam was ripped out at least once – some several times but she was very proud of the accomplishment (so was I) and she can sit down and sew without any problems now. Unfortunately, she grew out of it.

  64. Congrats on the baby!

    Went to Meijer to grocery shop yesterday and they were giving away free lunches for an anniversary special. It was a bratwurst, a bag of chips and a bottle of water. I had just come from the gym and was hungry too (although bratwurst and chips right after the gym seems to have cancelled that gym visit out!).
    2. Received two checks for $51 from Verizon and we’re not entirely sure why, but it was really fun to deposit them. Surprise money!
    3. Received a bill for $192 from my doctor. I called to ask about it and they said it was the deductible but it turns out they had used the wrong codes for the billing (they actually used some pregnancy codes and I’m not pregnant…I called my gynecology office just to make sure that they didn’t have information that I should know about!). So after talking to the insurance company and having the bill recoded it looks like the insurance company will pay for the whole bill. I was really close to just paying the bill because I thought maybe our deductibles had changed. So glad I called and found that out!
    4. The phlox that I got for SUPER cheap last May and planted have really spread and are looking just beautiful and adding gorgeous color to my landscaping beds.
    5. Was attending a casual luncheon today and needed something I could quickly make this morning and take with me as I had a meeting before the lunch. I had purchased a sweet potato cinnamon muffin mix at aldi on clearance for 25 cents. I made those with some added chocolate chips and everyone really liked them! – See more at: http://thenonconsumeradvocate.com/five-frugal-things-172/#comments

  65. Aahhh…but I do have letdown (sorry for a bad pun) because I was hoping for the big baby name reveal.

    Glad you are healing well…congratulations to you and your family.

  66. When I had my last baby a 10/12 lb 24 inch boy I too was unable to produce enough milk. Helpful friends and family just did not understand and I felt like I too had failed. I tried everything but nothing worked my Dr. finally told me he was just losing too much weight and I put him on formula. I still get comments from people about how easy it is to nurse and I just needed to do this or that. We all have to do what is best for our situation and for anyone to make another feel badly about themselves is just wrong. My son is now a healthy father to two little boys himself so guess we did ok .

  67. Congratulations on the birth of your baby boy Brandy. I’m sure he will be an added blessing to your family.

    Winter has almost arrived here in Australia. My menu now has soup on it quite often. Here’s what else I got up to

    * Made an whole orange cake for a Mother’s Day lunch at my Mum and Dad’s place.

    * Gratefully received a bag of silverbeet. Asian greens and Spring onions from my Dad’s garden. They were added to three meals this week

    * Saved some shower water to use in the washing machine.

    * Dried the washing on clothes horses when I could.; Some things had to be dried in the dryer. To offset the dryer expense, I kept the heater and laptop off a little longer.

    * Megan made me a Mother’s Day card from herself and Jessica using my card making supplies. The girls also reused some tissue paper and a gift bag for the presents ( which I saved to reuse again ).

    * We had takeaway fish and chips on Tuesday night that was budgeted for from our treat fund.

    * When to Savers to donate more household items ( got my discount stamp ). I found a savings book I’d been looking for the last couple of years. It only cost me $3.60 but retails for $20.

    * Filled up my car with petrol just before the price went up and used a discount stamp.

    * Started using a thermos to stored boiled water in during the day. I fill and boil the kettle in the morning, make a cuppa then pour the rest of the water into the thermos. There’s enough water in there for a couple of cuppas or to use at dinnertime to cook the potatoes / veggies.

    * I gained another regular cleaning job. The extra money will help me save for a new car sometime in the future.

    * Made a bottle of Miracle Spray and sold it to my new cleaning client.

    * Saved the cereal packet liner and cut it into squares to use as go between for crumpets and frozen soup portions.

    * Darren picked a couple of roses from the garden for my Mother’s Day breakfast tray.

    * Made a tuna casserole on Thursday night. The recipe needs cooked rice so I cooked enough for three casseroles at the same time and froze the other two portions for future casseroles

    I have some photos of some of these things on my blog. http://myabundantlife07.blogspot.com.au/2016/05/this-weeks-frugal-tasks-saturday-14th.html

  68. What a beautiful baby! The Lord has blessed you with a quiver full! 🙂 I know you said that you’ve tried everything to increase your milk supply but for me, using fenugreek tincture was downright amazing. That combined with as much rest as possible, plenty of fluids, and a healthy diet really increased my milk supply. I purchased my tincture from an online company called MotherLove. I love your blog. It continues to inspire me.

  69. Rhonda, I am interested in your Dorothy Duncan. We have nothing by her in the public library system but I found 2 authors. One was American, married and moved to Canada and died in the 50’s. Is this her daughter?

  70. The museum is near Peterborough, ON, Canada. Our website link is http://www.langpioneervillage.ca/. You can find all our hours of operation, dates for special events for the season and directions to the village on the website. If there are any questions you have, please feel free to call the museum. The staff are just wonderful! We’d love to have you and your husband visit sometime, Melissa!!!:D

    By the way, I am the only Rhonda that works there. So if you do come, feel free to ask if I’m working. If I am, please stop by my building to say hi!

  71. Congratulations on the baby! If you’re using using formula, be sure to go online to enfamil & similac’s websites… if you sign up, they’ll send you free cans of formula initially and then checks (which work like coupons) toward their formulas. Name brand formula with coupons may still be more expensive than store brand, though. Also, go to storebrandformula.com for printable coupons for store brand formula (I’ve never personally used this, but have seen it advertised). Your doctor’s office may also have samples to share. Good luck with everything!

  72. Each ant hill is its own colony. In the past when we have had ant hills we get a shovel full of dirt from two different colonies and switch the dirt with ants included. The ants will fight to the death to defend their colonies.

  73. Will your health insurance cover an electric pump? I never had letdown with mannual pumps. The electric ones worked great. Good luck. Nursing babies is hard work. ( 7 1/2 years worth between 4 boys.)

  74. Sabrina, in desert climates like my oldest daughters, sometimes the colonies are so large that they have multiple entrances…so what may look like 2 colonies is not – just different entrances to a single colony, especially if the area is overrun. All the little “colonies” by my driveway were the same hugecolony, because when we moved the ants, they did not fight.

    A while back there was a team making “art” that involved digging out a few shovel fulls from the top of large ant colonies, then pouring in molten aluminum, letting it cool, & then digging out the metal “sculpture”. To get the entire colony, sometimes they had to go down between 12-20 feet, pull out the chunk of dirt, then take it back to the studio where they could gently wash off the dirt without breaking any of the pieces off. The finished product looked like upside -down trees. Some of the “art” thus produced hung from the ceiling & reached down more than a story. They paid the land owner a couple hundred dollars for the use of the land to make the sculptures, which were quite expensive. I cannot remember the name of the people doing it, tho.

  75. I agree with Heather about the regulation/safety. The reason I started off with formula from Costco and then Sam’s Club was that when I had to supplement and asked my lactation consultant which one to use, she said they were almost all the same because of the regulations. I’ve heard that Target’s is not bad either.

  76. Thanks, I like reading cookbooks that share history. I am going to get a couple through inter-library loan.

  77. I don’t have any accomplishments to share.

    I actually have a question and thought this would be the perfect crowd to ask.

    I have 3 children; 6, 5 and 3….how many gallons of milk do you think I should budget? They do eat yogurt daily so they are getting calcium there, I have a lactose problem and so I do not drink milk. I use about a half gallon of almond milk every two weeks for my breakfast smoothie. DH will drink milk from time to time but nothing regular.

    I do have powdered milk and condensed milk that I could use in cooking.

    Thanks!

  78. One thing that helps if you have a homestead is having a milking goat.. my friend had to do that for a couple of her children who couldn’t drink milk. She got the Nigerian goats, they are smaller, eat less but still produce the same amount of milk that a large goat does. She froze the extra milk and in fact at one point I bought her extra milk (they had way too much at one point in the summer) to make my goat milk soaps. Her children are older now and have outgrown their intolerance so she no longer raises them.. she has a small homestead with a barn.

  79. I too have slowly been decluttering. I was taking to the Goodwill and Volunteers of America but it takes time and gas, yesterday I sat a box of stuff at the end of my yard closest to the street and someone came along and took the whole box. So I was able to give to someone who needed it whether for themselves to add to their yard sale or flea market.. i didn’t care, it was out of my house and I didn’t have to take time to go anywhere. Will continue to declutter like that till it’s all gone.

  80. Ants in the soil: This is a older post so hoping someone still see’s it. I do container gardening and had ants in one of my containers tonight. How do you get rid of them when they are in the soil? I went ahead and planted my almost dead banana peppers in the soil rather than them die but I never thought about how you can get rid of them?

  81. Sorry I didn’t see there was a answer already.. great advice. I drink coffee everyday and never thought about putting it in my containers.. duh moment. I can’t put it in the back yard as my dogs like to eat it but my container garden is in the front yard again this year because of the 2 year old pup who likes to eat anything in the yard.. pine cones from my neighbors tree, branches, etc. tomato plants she would love to rip out and run thru the yard with I’m sure.

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