Weekend Wrap Up

This weekend was supposed to be a slower than usual weekend however we still managed to get a lot accomplished.

  1.  Decided on our next house project.   We installed a new kitchen floor in March 2020.  The floor has begun to split and we have lots of pieces that no longer fit and it is becoming a hazard.  We have been talking for several months about replacing the floor.  We are not certain which direction that we want to go.  Matt and I talked and decided for the short run (less than a year) we will simply remove the new floor and return to the wood planks underneath. The current plan is to re-adjust the plank and attempt to nail in place. This is definitely not a permanent fix but solves the problem and will at least give us a presentable floor. We are going to undertake this project next weekend.
  2. Ordered the wood to finish the chicken coop and for the fence along the back edge of the yard.
  3. We have been watering the garden using county water for over a week now. It takes around 20 gallons a day to water so I am very hopeful that we will get some rain in the next 24 hours.
  4. Placed a down payment on our cow order. We should receive the cow some time the first couple weeks of August. Now we are focused on trying to decide what meat cuts we want.  I am also working on emptying one of our freezers. My goal is to get this accomplished by the end of July. However, it is fairly difficult when at the same time we are beginning to get in our summer produce.  Check and balance is all I can hope for.
  5. We ended up going to Costco on Friday night to use our reward check, I was very proud that we only ended up spending $26 out of pocket.  But that was short lived as we also went to Sam’s today.  We spend $260 of which over $200 was on food. I did stock up on Slim Jim’s (3 boxes) Hot Pockets (which the kids have been asking for) Biscuits and Pop tarts for breakfast in addition to some treats.
  6. We managed to only eat out one time this weekend. Matt has been practicing cooking on his new Blackstone.  He cooked two meals yesterday in addition to breakfast this morning!

Let’s get this week started on a good note!

5 Things Friday

  1. Overwhelmed yeap that is currently how I am feeling!  Today is the last day of school for Kendall and Zach. This means that for the short run 2 weeks or so we will have less to none things happening at night so maybe I can get caught up on the things that need doing.
  2. Garden- I am amazed at how much and how well things seem to be growing.  We have baby tomatoes, squash and snap peas. We are currently harvesting Kale, radish, dill and chives.. I want to get some pictures up soon!    One of the goals for the weekend is to finish planting. Amanda brought over a 8 container garden she built several years ago, I need to fill it along with one more container I found under the house. I have planted additional squash and zucchini this week so hopefully they will grow and produce as well.
  3. Summer project list- I have started working on the list of summer projects.  First up is finding someone to clear the area of land at the back of our house. We will be getting chickens in the near future so this area needs to be cleared in order to build a coop and run.  I also need to schedule our septic tank to be pumped.  After these two items are completed, we would like to get the bathroom floor re-titled and maybe get some vinyl in the kitchen.  That is the short list.
  4. Saturday goal- Replace the greenhouse roof that was destroyed by hail last week. We are going to convert it to hard plastic in order to extend the life and reduce maintenance.
  5. Financial goal- I need to do some serious bill pay and establish the new budget for June this weekend as well.

Did I mention I am overwhelmed?

5 Things Friday

  1. Barely survived this week with 2 ballgames and 2 doctors appointments.  Not sure what will happen next week with 3 ballgames, 1 chorus concert and 3 nights of work.
  2. The garden is growing!  I am super excited to see how everything is starting to take off. I am hoping for a nice harvest this year.  We are spending about 5 minutes a day pulling weeds so far so good.
  3. I want to get a couple of meals made ahead on Saturday in order to make things go a little smoother.
  4. Sunday we have all day plans which include Cracker Barrel, shopping and a trip to Durham.
  5. Lily has finished the spring semester at DDCC, Zach and Kendall have 3 weeks left of school and I have 6 weeks between me and summer break.


Tuesday Thoughts

  1. I was unable to find strawberry plants on Saturday in town but did find that Stark Brothers has an awesome sale currently. I am likely going to go ahead and order 25 and plant most in the vertical planter and the remaining ones can be planted in containers. As Matt said then if they all live you can transplant next year!
  2. SInce I am ordering the strawberry plants,, I am also debating trying to grow raspberries in the very shady part of my yard. I seriously have a hard time finding information about growing raspberries but I do know that my kids absolutely love them!
  1. Matt and the kids are planning on joining Haley and David for a day on the lake on Saturday. I am excited because this will leave me with lots of time to work on budgeting and bills as well as heading to the grocery store with Mom without pressure to hurry.
  2. We are attempting to leave our air conditioner off as long as possible! I was disappointed that after returning from Disney we had to run the heat for 3 days. So now the goal is to see how long we can go without using the air. With everyone out during the day and baseball games at least 2 nights a week. We should be able to last until May 15th. This would be an excellent way to save on our electric bill as that is the end of the billing cycle!.
  3. I did not share but on Thursday we made an impromptu trip to Costco which blew our grocery budget out of the water! Ugghhhh

5 Things Friday-Matt’s Edition

  1. Yesterday was Matt’s 50th birthday and no one can tell me we don’t celebrate in style!  Let me share just how!
  2. Dinner at Bad Daddy’s which is his favorite burger joint and a double appetizer of fried pickles!
  3. Trip to Costco… the Tahoe needed gas so we decide to live large and shop as well.  $425 later… is that large enough?  We were able to score 3 new pair of dress pants for him in addition to some special treats for breakfast and lunch!
  4. After a day at his new job followed by dinner and shopping at Costco with all 5 of us… he came home to work on the dishwasher.  It had thrown an error code AE the night before. Luckily a little bit of research and 30 minutes later, he had the dishwasher repaired!
  5. I purchased a supply of cream horns, chocolate eclairs and cupcakes from Ketchie Creek today to continue celebrating as we work in the yard!

Seriously Happy Birthday to a great father, awesome husband and my best friend thur thick and thin!

5 Things Friday-COVID Edition

1 Timeline-  I started with a slight cough on Saturday night while attending LIly’s performance in  Sound of Music.   Worked on Monday but did end a session 10 minutes early. Came home and went to bed.  Tuesday- woke up and took a COVID test- it was positive, Doctor’s appointment on Tuesday.  Wednesday was Awful. Thursday some improvement but went medicine free and started IVermectrin.  Friday- functioning human being but still no where near normal.

2. I have learned that sometimes no medicine is the best.  I had a horrible time both Monday and Wednesday night when taking Nyquil. Thursday night-just honey and 100% improvement. I also have tried the nasal decongest given by my doctor and it makes me soooo sleepy.   Guess I will try again at night.  Uggghhhh

3.  I am planning to be out of work until at least Wednesday.  I will be out of quarantine then as well.  This is the longest I have ever missed work.

4. Symptoms- include NO fever, loss of part of my taste and smell, congestion, coughing, sore throat and ears, coughing and wheezing, chills, nausea and vomitting.

5. Zach had the stomach bug just prior to the last time we had COVID in November 2020.  This time as well!

5 Things Friday

  1.  Kendall had the stomach bug last Sunday. Today Zach has a stomach bug. This thing is awful.  I am praying that it only last 24 hours so Zach and I both can enjoy Lily’s performances on Saturday and Sunday.                                                                                         Now for more positive news!
  2. I found several packs of tomato and green pepper seeds in my seed box a couple of weeks ago. I decided to use some of the containers I have been saving along with dirt that we had left to try and see if I could grow any plants from seed.  I planted 2 packs of both.  Currently, we have about 75% germination rate for the green peppers and about 25% for the tomatoes which were planted almost 2 weeks later!   The goal would be to be able to transfer these to the garden in mid April and at least half survive. If I can get even 25% to survive that will decrease my out of pocket for the garden!
  3. Gas prices have seemed to level out and have returned to just under $4 a galloon for us.  This week we have focused on having the Tahoe sit as much as possible and using the Equinox which get a minimum of 10 miles per galloon better gas mileage. It has worked so far as we have put 2 additional tanks in the Equinox this week.
  4. I stopped by the store on my way home from work today in order to purchase a couple of items that we needed because of the stomach bug.  I spent $49 which included TIde pods, 2 containers of deodorant, 4 6-packs of soda, a bag of chips and 8 packages of sausage patties. I found the sausage patties on sale for $2.39 for a package of 8 patties.
  5. Our electric bill came in this week and it is over $100 less than last month!! I am so thankful!  The next bill is typically the lowest of the year due to not needing heat or a/c for several days at a time!


Saving On Saturday

This weekend I have saved money in two areas food and gas!

We knew when we purchased the Tahoe that it was not fuel efficient, but we also knew it was what we wanted to fit all the needs we had.  With the significant increase in prices, some folks are talking about how they are reducing trips and changing habits to save on their fuel bill.  I can honestly say that although we are seeing a bigger saving, we have not changed how we drive. First of all, we live at least 5 minutes from the closest gas station and Dollar General. At least 10 minutes from the closest store or restaurant, so not driving is just not an option. What we do is to combine trips whenever possible for example, Matt had to attend a parent meeting uptown for Lily yesterday, so I asked him to stop by the store to grab some drinks that were on sale.  We also combined a trip to Costco with filling up our tank to save money as well. The other thing is that we try to use the Equinox as much as possible. I have not left the house this weekend, so the Tahoe has been sitting in the driveway with me while the Equinox is running all the errands.  By doing this we are able to fill the Equinox about the same number of times as the Tahoe for $20 or more less.  Every little bit helps and adds up.

Food is our 3rd largest expense.  Our goal this year is to use up as much of the food in our freezers prior to the summer so that we can restock it.  We currently have a stand up freezer and a chest freezer in our building. Both were completely full at the end of 2021.  This week we have been able to use and move 50% of the items in the chest freezer. Our goal is to purchase a whole cow this summer and we will need every bit of room in this freezer in order to do so.  My plan is once we get the freezer emptied to turn it off and defrost and clean it, then I will begin the hunt for a cow to fill it back up! Another area of savings is that we have not eaten out this week.  We did enjoy Chick A Filet on Friday but we used money that was earned by selling a car box. This was a win win situation for us!  We have several other items listed to sale on Facebook market place as well so hopefully we can continue to clean out and repurpose the funds.  We also have been working really hard in order to use up and not waste left-overs. I decided on Saturday to use the left-over turkey we had from last week to make a Turkey Dorito casserole.  I used this recipe  subbing turkey for the chicken. It was a hit. I also make a turkey noddle casserole that we will eat on Wednesday for dinner.  We added a box of stuffing, sauteed zucchini from the freezer, air fried some corn and that was our dinner.  Matt and I made bagels on Friday night which turned out awesome!  Again it is all the small things that count!


Thursday Thoughts

  •  I was able to see our electric bill for the month of February on the app this week. $301.49.  This is definitely the highest bill in recent memory, but I am also thinking all time high as well. It is also $40 over what I budget each month to cover the electricity.
  • I made a trip to the grocery store to mainly pick up salad supplies and fruits for the kids to use for lunches next week.  I also grab to loaves of French bread at $1.00 each. My plan is to make a batch of French toast on Saturday with adding some in the freezer for quick breakfast. Total spent 21.47 which brings our monthly grocery total to $127 before Amazon. I will add in Amazon at the end of the month when it is billed.  I will need to stop at Aldi or Food Lion to pick up eggs tomorrow as we are down to 18 eggs and with plans for French toast those will be gone quickly!
  • We ended up ordering Zach an electric toothbrush this week, which was totally unplanned, but the hope is that he will use this regularly!
  • I found a single steak in our black freezer and had put on the menu to make steak fried rice today. It turned out AMAZING!   We had enough for all 6 of us (Mom provided desert) both Zach and Matt have already been back for seconds, and we still have one serving left for leftovers.
  • I have a list on the side of the whiteboard of items that I want to put on the menu in the next week or so in order for us to continue to eat out of our freezer.  I am trying to use at least one item a week that is not a preferred items in order to make things go easier.
  • I decided to go ahead and put some eggs in the insta pot so I could use those on salads next week.   I ended up making egg salad for Zach as he wants to take it for lunch tomorrow. I may have to have an egg salad sandwich for breakfast.
  • When we first went into COVID lockdown, I was able to purchase air filters for ninety-seven cent each. I purchased six or seven case. We usually change at least 2 a month. Sadly, we only have 6 filters left. I am not at all hopeful to find this type of deal again.
  • After months of turning down extra work in Guam, I have agreed to take on four more schools.  I am hopefully to maintain only working 2 nights a week, but this will be a significant boast in income that should allow us to continue to live comfortably the remainder of the year and cover some unexpected medical expenses as well as tax payment that is needed.

5 Things Friday

  1. The weather continues to be very different and mostly cold. Monday, I had a teacher workday while Kendall and Zach enjoyed a 3-hour delay.  Today, it is 69*. We are expecting more winter weather on Sunday…. I am so ready for Spring!
  2.  After our trip to the grocery store to finish purchasing food for Junk Food Sunday, we have spent $106 for groceries this month!  This means we are on track for another $200 month in February!
  3. Because of the nice weather, we decided to have a trail run putting up and taking down the tent.  The good news is that the tent is definitely going to be a huge benefit at Disney, giving us a whole room for storage and to allow the girls to get dressed in a much larger area than the camper beds. The bad news is that it took about 30 minutes each to put up and take down.  Guess we need a lot more practice.
  4. The plan for the weekend is to trim back the rose bush. This needs to be completed in February each year and it is much easier to do at 60 degrees than 30 degrees.
  5. I will have to work on Junk Food Sunday, but we are still planning on have lots of good food!