Fall Flowers The Prudent Homemaker

November is a busy month for me, and I have a lot of posts planned! There will be at least one post every day this month, with many days having two posts a day. I’m bringing back my Thankful series again for the month, and I’ll be writing my Gift a Day series as well. I also have several new recipes to share.

Thankful Series

 A Gift a Day Series


There are definitely some projects left from last month that are moved to this month’s list. 

Sewing/Present Making:

I have a lot of gifts for my children already this year. Five of my children are getting a new watch; two are getting this one, two are getting new ones I bought at garage sales for $3 each, and one is getting this one. I’ve picked up many items at garage sales, including clothing, jewelry, a vintage Fisher-Price record player, a puzzle, and more. I don’t need a lot more, so for the first year in many years I should be done making gifts in November and not need to make more presents in December (I usually make the presents that take longer than a day in December). This is fantastic! I have other items I want to sew in December, and lots of activities that I want to do as a family.

1. Make 15-16 gifts on weekdays and take pictures of them

2. Make two aprons for myself

3. Make a new dress for myself

4. Make a pillow for a chair in the library


Manure Spreader The Prudent Homemaker


I’ll be working in my garden on Saturdays.

1. Divide and replant daffodil bulbs

2. Plant seeds

3. Manure lawn

4. Tidy garden

5. Harvest lemons (they are ripening about 6 weeks early this year)



1. Finish organizing sewing room

2. Finish organizing pantry

3. Clean vacuum. This helped a lot last month, and I can see how it would really be helpful to do it at least once a month, if not twice.

4. Clean refrigerator. I used to do this once a month, years ago. I’d like to return to that.

5. Flip over living room rug and vacuum the back side. We’ll have to move furniture for this, but we’ll do the back side and then the top to  get more dirt out. I have done this before with the rug in my closet and was amazed at how much more dirt came out.



Where I shop will depend on the deals I see this month at the grocery stores.


Note: I wrote this list before I fell on Thursday.

Therefore, with all of these, I have to be careful, as my recent fall makes sitting normally impossible for several weeks or more. I’m not sure if I will be able to sew at the machine or not, and it may not be possible to make any sewn gifts at all.  If that happens, I may have to put off the Gift a Day series until December. For shopping, I will be making lists and sending my husband to the store. I’ll most likely have to have my family help me with accomplishing the rest of my goals, since I cannot move much.


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  1. Hi Brandy and all from Australia :D.

    This month’s goals for my husband & I involve a lot around general deep cleaning of the house, car and shed. So chores are –
    – Clean the inside, outside, and underneath oven.
    – Clean the fridge outside, inside and underneath.
    – Vacuum, clean and wash the car now that water restrictions have ended due to recent good rainfall.
    – Sweep and organise the garden shed.
    – Wash windows inside and out of the house.
    – Clean walls & ceilings in lounge room and kitchen.
    – Sweep front veranda where we stack our timber, as recent rain storms left leaves & debris everywhere.

    In the garden –
    – Thin carrots in the garden and replant to make more rows so they grow larger.
    – Plant more corn, radish, tomato seeds, & plant borage into front garden near strawberries given to me by a lovely friend.
    – Transplant more tomato seedlings into the garden beds.
    – Harvest any ripe crops during the month and collect as many seeds as I can.
    – Blanch and freeze any excess vegetables we have in the garden to increase our food storage.
    – Continue to take paid orders from friends for vegetables each week and pick accordingly, helps us to save more for our home & pay for additional needs for the garden such as seeds, organic fertilizers etc.

    In the kitchen –
    – We have finally unearthed (yes a bit like an archaeological expedition) the bread maker in the shed after moving almost a year ago to make more bread rather than buy it to save on money. Challenge on where to put it now in the small kitchen in the 10 sq metre home we rent.
    – Watch for specials on tinned corn, peas, ziplock bags, deodorant and any other things we have used from the pantry.

    Craft hobby business –
    – Catch up on making eye masks, curtain tiebacks and journal covers sold to increase stock levels.
    – Attempt to keep up with no doubt a busy lead up to Christmas for people’s gift buying and do any custom orders that are requested.

    Relaxation –
    – Work to deliberately sit down and have me time. Really hard for me as I am a natural energiser bunny.

    Being thankful and greatful for all that we have –
    – Start every morning with focusing on what we are greatful for.

  2. My goals for the month are simple. I need to get caught up on my bills since I had no paycheck for 3 weeks when I was off on injury leave after a severely sprained Ankle from Sept 4-Oct 17th. I did enjoy those 6 weeks off work (outside my home). I could’ve gotten very used to being a SAHM. I cooked, cleaned and kept a tidy house.

    I also need to decide what I’m going to buy each family member for Christmas, so I’m not scrambling the last few weeks before Dec 25th buying stuff at the store. Nieces will likely get giftcards to stores…Teenagers are SO hard to buy for. lol I’m kinda glad I have but one son…he wants a $245 pair of sneakers(Nike LeBron 13’s) Umm…not likely. He IS a good kid, gets straight A’s..doesn’t get in trouble at school(that I’m getting a call from the Principal) but I don’t even have a pair of shoes that cost that much!

    Thanksgiving will be simple…smoked turkey, mashed potatoes, homemade stuffing, green bean casserole and corn. Oh and a pumpkin pie 🙂 I’ll be working Tue-Thu that week with Black Fri and Sat off…so dinner will actually BE at dinner time as opposed to noon, which is when my husband prefers to eat. Sorry, Momma’s gotta work and is working 3rd shift so I’ll be SLEEPING at noon 😉

  3. Hi Brandy and in relation to your planned sewing projects and the problem of not being able to sit down. As in our home we do a lot of work around lateral thinking to get things done for injuries I have an idea for you.

    If your sewing machine is not in one of those sewing cabinets, you could have your husband pick up the sewing machine and just relocate it to somewhere slightly higher, for example your kitchen benches look to be rather high rom your photos. That would allow you to stand up and sew, just put your machine closer to the edge of the cabinet top, foot control on the floor and away you go. Or if not the right height another table you may have at home and prop up the sewing machine with phone books till it is the right height for you till you get better.

    Let me know if this works, but just an idea I thought may work for you.

  4. I enjoy your blog so much! At the end of this post you said you can’t move much, are you okay? Did I miss something?

  5. I’m curious about cleaning your vacuum. What does that involve, and why (if not obvious)? I’m trying to remember if you have a central vacuum system, as we do, and look forward to learning something new. It’s lovely to have several new posts from you. I’m sure you know how sorely you are missed when away. I’ll be praying for good rest, comfort and rapid healing for you. Just take good care of yourself, and we’ll await your posts with bated breath :o).

  6. I’m really looking forward to all your new posts this month, Brandy! I remember I really enjoyed your “thankful” series last year. I’m glad you will be doing it again this year.

    I do hope you get a chance to make some Christmas presents for the “gift a day” posts, even if there are only a few. I love the inspiration and ideas it gives me for making gifts for my own family. You always have such wonderful ideas!

  7. I have a bagless vacuum. Normally the filter just gets blown out (we use the air compressor) but you can wash it out. It just takes 24 hours to dry and it gets it much cleaner. I took the canister apart and washed it out. I was really surprised how much dirt kept rinsing out of it when it looked like it would easily come out immediately. Wipe the whole machine down to get off dust and dirt. Turn it over and clean out threads/hair from the beaters.

    It was really easy and afterwards I saw a lot more dirt coming up when we used it afterwards. Plus, there wasn’t a dusty smell after vacuuming. Though we have area rugs, our vacuum canister is full in two days, so it can use a good cleaning.

  8. Hi, I am very interested in where and how to get ahold of a manure spreader lime you show in the picture..The Amish where I lived in Pa.always spread manure down on all there fields and garden bed. They always had such wonderful veggies and flowers.. Do you spread it over the grass as well?

  9. We use it for the grass; it would crush the plants in the garden so I do that by hand with a rake since I am growing things all that time. Our local nursery rents these spreaders, but my husband was able to buy this one from them for $25 because the clasp that kept it closed was broken. He made a new clasp for it. After you spread the manure on the grass with it, you use a rake to rake it into the grass (it’s like the opposite of vacuuming!) it greens up the grass better and faster than any chemical fertilizer, and if we do it before it gets too cool, the grass stays a darker green during the winter than it would have otherwise. That’s nice when it doesn’t snow and you’re looking at grass all winter.

  10. Sorry to hear about your pain. I find that after having children all my injuries seem to be multiplied in seriousness and pain
    I hope you recover soon!

    Maybe some of your aprons and your dress Winter could work on as a gift to you 😉

  11. I was wondering how you were doing. I’m sorry to hear you are still having trouble sitting. Keep resting it will get better…eventually.

    My goals for this month are simple.
    We need to pack away all of the Halloween decorations and get all of the Thanksgiving decorations out.
    I need to clean up and store all of the Halloween fabric I’ve been using since July.
    I need to straighten my office and sewing area as it is the first thing you see from my entryway.
    I will be going through my clothes and pulling out all of my winter items. I live in north Texas and we have been colder than usual the last few days.
    I will continue to crochet fingerless mitts and ear-warmers for my daughters and granddaughters for the holidays. I will probably make hats for the boys too.
    Thanksgiving is fast approaching and I need to get the extra food in the house for all the treats we make.
    We have 2 pie pumpkins to cook so we can make fresh pumpkin pies. Yummm…
    I will be pulling more fabric to start a Halloween Quilt order.
    That is plenty for me this month.
    Blessings to all of you that read this.
    Brandy take care of yourself. That tailbone can give you all sorts of pain.

  12. I don’t think she can copy an existing piece of clothing and make a pattern from it yet 🙂 I want to copy and modify a couple of dresses to create a new pattern. I’m planning on copying and modifying some existing aprons (my current worn-out ones are a little too tall for me and need some modifications) to make a new pattern.

    I’m not planing on working on those until the end of the month after I’ve finished presents. I never could get to them last month, but maybe later this month.

  13. What a time to get hurt :(. Not that there is ever a “good” time but it seems like you are really busy this time of year. I hope the lateral sewing works out for you. I can’t imagine being laid up this time of year. I’d hyperventilate. Like you I make gifts and save a ton doing it, so if I was unable to do that…gah…can’t even imagine!

    My goals for the month can be found here…


  14. Just a quick word about vacuum maintenance. After having my bagless for about a year, I found out there were actually two filters. I had always been cleaning the one filter but when I found the second one, wow, a difference in cleaning power.
    I , too, really missed your posts and was hoping it was because life just got busy. I know first hand that slowing down to a new normal is very difficult. Praying for your recovery.

  15. My goals are simple too for November:
    – Clean kitchen before Thanksgiving very thoroughly including cabinets
    – Find Thanksgiving and 4 other day dinner plans for visiting son and DIL who are eating Paleo
    – Finish pruning and spraying of yard
    – Vacuum semi-finished basement

  16. Brandy, best wishes for a speedy recovery!

    Goals for this month:
    -continue eating out of the freezer, defrost and clean it
    -watch for good sales and start restocking the freezer
    -clean refrigerator and oven
    -continue planning weekly meals and limiting grocery shopping to 1-2 times per week
    -meet grocery budget!

  17. First of all, prayers are with you on a speedy recovery. I was worried about you last week. Second of all I squealed out loud when I read “a post everyday this month.” Woohoo
    My goals this month include
    *stocking up on baking supplies
    *stocking up at wal greens when they run their Black Friday freebies. Yes I buy shampoo on black Friday! This is the one time a year that I do many many transactions. I find that the large box stores are full and I can stock up at our 24 hour store before the crowds ever get there.
    *make Christmas decor
    * make Christmas presents.
    * make items and buy items to fill operation christmas child boxes.
    *put all flower pots and garden buckets under shed for winter
    *read and study about one Saint per day
    *redo room that has been oldest daughters/guest room/storage room and turn it into a homework/library.
    *contine 10,000-15,000 steps per day for 6 days a week.
    *plan and prep as much as I can to have a calm december.

  18. Check out the site “Paleo Parents”. They have recipes on their site and have some pretty family friendly stuff there. I’ve had friends who were Paleo and cooked that way for them. Good luck!

  19. Hi Brandy and glad I could help.

    In our home our ironing board is new but would be a bit iffy and wobbly to put our sewing machine on, but mind you that is just ours yours probably is sturdier. The kitchen cabinets however are much sturdier and probably more child friendly as little ones love to run around and wear off their excess energy, that I wish I had more of, and they would not be able to knock it over accidentally.

    I know that our kitchen cabinets are a wonderful size for cutting out material for sewing here, I found out quite by chance after I was running for the phone, the back step gave way and tilted, and down I went like a bag of spuds.

  20. oh dear that is one area so sensitive to injury! Just take it easy and heal. I hope your able to accomplish all you have planned, but sometimes the Lord has other plans for us:-) If your not able to sew that apron, I am having an apron giveaway on my blog, which is newly designed. Enter and maybe you’ll win one!

  21. Hope you are recovering from your fall and starting to feel better. Take it easy and rest.

    My November goals are mostly health related as I have several doctors’ appointments and will start chemo therapy (it was postponed because my lumpectomy incision became infected and I am currently on antibiotics for that). So, depending on how I feel after chemo, etc., I plan to work on making holiday gifts, decluttering and organizing my home.

  22. So inspiring to see all of these comments.
    -Continue to enjoy the flowers before we get a frost. Plan to keep the plants watered and faithfully they will bloom.
    -Stain the exterior of our sun porch.
    -Take down the last of the garden solar lights and tuck away for the winter.

    Household Management
    -Sympathy card mailed to a dear family friend.
    -Organize the “bill/mail” drawer.
    -Correspond with a neighbor regarding a land sale.
    -Continue to clean our the attic before it gets cold outside.

    -Clean up “sewing” shelf.
    -Try to sew for 30 minutes a day, finish stitching the top of a quilt I am making.

    Have a good one everyone.

  23. Brandy,
    I’m very sorry you fell and hurt yourself. I’ve had to lay in bed for a few days in the past, due to another issue, but I think the most frustrating part is not getting my “list” done. Good job for being willing to both use the help that is offered (hard to do for some of of independent types:)) and for being willing to flex with your plans. Hang in there.

    November goals:
    Work on eating from the cupboards and freezers. Make room in the freezers for the 18 turkeys that will be “done in” after Thanksgiving. I have several freezers, but that is because we grow and process so much of our own meat and vegetables. We already have one turkey left from the 4 we got butchered last month on hand for turkey day. One went to the chiropractor who is working for free on my husband as a thank-you to him, one to the man who re-did the brakes on our car for free as a thank-you to him, one to our dear, dear friends (their children are our god-children), and one for Thanksgiving. Some of the 18 will be Christmas gifts for relatives who “have everything” but we want to remember because we love them so much. The rest will be our dinner quite a few times:) I want to buy ham when it comes on sale, as well as mini chocolate chips.

    I need to take a large quantity of soup bones out of the freezers, boil them up and can the broth to make more room. Last time we butchered turkeys, we made turkey burger with a meat grinder we borrowed. We hope to do the same this time. I still haven’t done all the bones and I have more on the way! I also have some beef soup bones left from our last 1/2 beef we bought to make broth with and can up.

    I want to rip out the section of a quilt I have been working on for around 10+ years. I worked on it this past week, but made a mistake. I want to fix it before I forget what to do since I seldom get back to it. I’m excited. I am closing in on the project.

    I want to make some skirts for the girls. In the past, I have purchased or made them (and the boys too when they were home) an outfit for Thanksgiving, a fancy Christmas dress or outfit, and a casual outfit for Christmas Day. I don’t want to spend that much money this year, as my husband is out of work. So, I have plenty of fabric so I will sew some things up, and pair them with existing items or clearance items. They have lots of plain t-shirts that would pair well with some of the cotton fabric I have upstairs. I will probably be able to swing 1 fancy church Christmas dress for the 2 youngest since the 19 year old is beyond the age where I buy her clothes and she works, but am not sure yet. I need to be creative and frugal whatever I do.

    I’d like to make some gifts for the nieces. My autistic niece loves me to make her pajamas. I hope to get the time to do it again. I want to make tote bags/purses out of fabric. I’ve got a pattern I liked and some cotton fabric.

    I am hosting Thanksgiving. I’ve got some cleaning to do. I’d like to start sorting out some old magazines, bookshelves, etc. to clear out the clutter, anyway. It’s highly possible we may move within the next year and it will be easier if it is clean. If we don’t move, that’s ok, clean is good all the time.

    We are watching my autistic niece, my special needs nephew, and one more niece from Sunday-Thanksgiving Day, that week. We hope to do some fun activities with them, and then clean like maniacs on the last day, with the help of my Mom, aunt and my oldest sister. My special needs kids, plus that crew can really wreck havoc on a place, but they are so-o-o worth every minute–we just need to plan well. I am planning a project with my older niece–we will make a pillow from Seattle Seahawk fleece–the tie kind. I need to find some pillow forms I know are in the attic. She has a really hard time staying away from her own home, so we’ve been dropping hints of all the fun stuff we are going to do for a couple of weeks now to sweeten the idea to her. We will need to keep her distracted, as 4 nights is an eternity to her and there will probably be crying, etc. There is less if she is interested. Rob has already promised french fries and ice cream at some point, I’ve got the pillow project, and we have some movies she likes a lot. We’ll make out.

    I need to plan the cooking for our monthly 4H club (23 kids plus parents who teach other classes, 3 cooking classes, 8-9 different recipes, ingredients, etc.), plus set up for the day, then clean up afterwards. They do help clean up, but there is always quite a bit to put away after they leave. I have some recipes chosen, I just need to finalize my day. I have them cook in teams (2-3 kids per team, maximum of 11 in each class), and have to choose carefully–some at the stove, some working on the island or table that only need the oven, or sometimes use another appliance like an electric skillet, some outside doing outdoor cooking with Rob, etc. so everyone gets hands-on. It takes a while to organize so they are not bumping into each other or all need the oven, etc.

    I’d like to make a menu plan. I’ve been doing it every 2-3 days, but I’d like to make a longer one-at least a week at a time. That works well for me. Rob is also willing to make some meals since he is home more and it will help him to know what to make sometimes. He is very creative, so wants the option to change the plan if he gets into a mood, but mostly thought it would help him out.

    I need to plan and oversee the one daughter’s schoolwork that is home-schooled. My husband has been having her do it while I am at work and we have a few glitches to work out because he doesn’t know what I want, so she is getting by with some stuff she shouldn’t. It’s a communication issue and Rob and I think we have a plan. He just doesn’t know since he’s never been the one in charge of this area.

    I need to order the rest of the music I need for my piano students.

  24. Oh my Brandy I am so grossed out! I have NEVER vaccumed the underside of my large rug in the living room. Yuck!!! Thanks for sharing such a detailed list of goals. 🙂 I always find so much inspiration from your list. Do you happen to have an air purifier or do you just rely on indoor plants for air purification? Something I have been wondering about. I’m so sorry you aren’t feeling well. Here’s to healing quickly! Absolutely love your gift a day series and look forward to it. Here is my list of goals for the week:
    This Week’s Goals:

    Marriage, Mothering, & Family:
    1) Attend two therapy appointments with Evangeline.
    2) Enjoy a date with the happy hubby.
    3) Weather permitting I hope to take the children to the zoo this week.

    4) Visit the dentist for a dental cleaning.
    5) Finish reading Teaching From Rest and complete chapter 5 of The Wisdom of God: Seeing Jesus in the Psalms & Wisdom Books.

    6) Finish sewing at least one Christmas present.
    7) Pack up my summer clothes and de-clutter my closet. I’m hoping I can also get the happy hubby on board with this project but we will see.

    Ministry & Friendships:
    8) Write a note of encouragement to a friend going through a difficult time. I am also going to spend some additional time this week praying for this friend.
    9) Catch up with a friend this week via telephone.
    10) Write and mail 6 thank you notes by Thursday.

    11) Work four hours this week from home.
    12) Write three blog posts. I am hoping to blog more frequently from now until Christmas.

  25. I open the windows every day. In the summer and winter the time is shorter, but I always give a little time to airing out the house. Right now the weather is beautiful and the windows are open all day. As it gets cooler (temperatures are supposed to drop tonight and tomorrow’s high will be 20 degrees cooler than today’s, and then it should stay that cool) I will have them open during the day but fewer hours in the evenings.

  26. Brandy wishing you a speedy recovery. It is wonderful that you were ahead of the game of the kids gifts. I hope you are able to get much of your list done.

    My goals this month are:
    * finish fall cleaning
    *finish up gifts
    *stock up on turkey when the sales happen

    I am in pretty good shape for winter.
    Take care and get lots of rest.


  27. I, too, have a bagless vacuum, and the canister and components are so easy to take apart to clean. I wash the removable components with hot soapy water every time after vacuuming, and I have never had that “vacuum cleaner” smell that is so nasty. I even wash the sponge filter that surrounds a sturdy paper type filter. Even washing the paper type filters, they last me a year or longer.

  28. November is always busy here getting ready for the snow to fly – hopefully it won’t be as bad as last year!
    * Close up the vents in the rabbit shed and clean it out so the wheelbarrow, chipper and spreader all fit for the winter.
    * rake up all the leaves and put them on the garden beds.
    * cut down 3 trees, chip up all the branches, spread the chips around the garden beds and cut up the remainder for fire wood.
    * Clean out the 3rd stall in the garage so I can actually park inside.
    * Winterize the pontoon and bus – move the bus to the in-laws for the winter.
    * pick up 2 more pallets of wood bricks.
    * stock up on baking pantry items + canned veggies
    * move a shelf into the pantry for bulk flour, sugar, oat storage + have a space IN the pantry for my dehydrator.
    * start my daughter and son’s t-shirt quilts and a ribbon collage (they have probably 150 ribbons each from 4-H and rabbit shows)
    * start my sister’s Christmas gift (napkins embroidered for her Sabbath dinners)
    * Late November, depending on temps, set up all of the outdoor critters heated water bowls/bottles and put away the summer tubs.
    * Finish some small painting projects.

  29. Becky, I never noticed that you had a blog yourself. I just realized today that your name was “clickable”. Nice seeing pictures of your girls and the hearth full of squash!

  30. I am thinking of you and remembering you in my prayers.
    Midmonth we have a realtor coming to the house. This week we are ebaying as well as next week. We are hoping to generate 1,000 over two weeks. We want to finish paying off our furnace and a/c( we had to replace everything in March) by Christmas. We are dedicating the weekend to cleaning the yard. The rest of our time will be cleaning before the realtor gets here. After the realtor’s visit we’ll get ready for Thanksgiving.

  31. Bless, I pray an easy time for you. It may not be as bad as you hear….keep a positive attitude. A cousin-in-law had a modified radical procedure back in 1997 along with chemo and radiation. She did not have the nausea…for her it manifested just as a food aversion. Nothing looked or tasted good to her, only very simple, unseasoned foods were all she wanted. It took a month or so for her appetite to come back. She is doing just fine today! She was only 41 at the time. I remember taking her to a couple appointments…the oncology department had the most wonderful, caring people working there. I am sure you will be in the best hands…your health care worker’s and God’s.

  32. I feel for you . I just had my 3rd back procedure so I can walk and sit without pain. Still sitting long periods like over an hour can cause real issues. Birth defect so nothing they can do. I do stand at my sewing maching. It’s on a table that is raised and I use my hand on the foot pedal.

    PS My friend from AL is at Kingsman and heading to Vegas to fly out. Said there was sleet the last few days there. Hope you and yours are doing okay

  33. We didn’t get sleet but we did get an odd storm. We got a little bit of a gentle, barely there rain in the morning yesterday, but there was some strange sounding thunder (more like trucks on the freeway sounds) to the east of us and we could see that it was coming down there.

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