Monday, December 29, 2014

2015 Money Saving Guide (Goal)

Every year I post this....So, here it is again....

It can be started at any time, but as most people make New Year's resolutions this time of the year, here it is again.

I should do this every year, but I'll admit, I don't.  A few years I have done double on this, by adding in some babysitting money.  On those years, this paid for our winter propane, Christmas and towards the year end taxes.  On the years I have not done this,....well, come December I wish I had....

I have had people tell me that they can not afford to do this.  If you truly can't, then just do what you can do.  

I have also had women from 2 income families tell me that they do this and also their husbands do it.  So by year end, they have double the amount.  One told me she and her husband make a contest of it to see who can save the most. 

I don't do mine in this order.  I put my November and December months during the spring time--April, May and early June, because that is when we don't have any A/C or heat bills. In November and December we have the propane bills, Thanksgiving and Christmas (gifts and a slightly higher food bill).  So, for us, this rearrangement of the schedule works.  I also put my "found money" in as well.  We have one grocery store where I always find at least 10 cents on the ground in the parking lot, several times I have found bills, and once I even found a twenty dollar bill.

If you think you can't afford it, look at what you can cut.  What about that morning coffee you get on the way to work (make it at home)??  Or a magazine subscription that you take but don't read (read it for free at the library),  or that pack of cigarettes, or that junk food??

One year in March a woman wrote in and told me she could only afford to do this by giving up her vending machine habit at work.  By March, she had already lost 8 lbs (she went walking on her breaks instead of buying a soda and candy bar) but had saved $122 thus far.  Her method was a little different.  In the early months she was putting what she would have eaten out of the machine at work into a jar.  By the end of March, she had $122 in there.  In November she told me she was still saving and losing weight and her doctor had removed her off of some of her medications as a result of the weight she had lost.  So, she was taking that money (saved from her prescription co-pay) and adding that to her money jar as well. 

Many banks require you to have a specific amount before you can open an account.  Others don't.  So shop around.  I put ours into an old money market account.  If I need to get it out, I do.  But with it in an account other than what I carry a checkbook for, I'm not going to spend it.

Dep amount
Dep amount

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

I found these while going through the Christmas decorations.  The younger set of twins did these when they were 3, in 2001. They are now 16.

This one, was done by Elizabeth.  I like the Angel flying overhead.

This one, was done by Rebecca.  She labeled hers so there would be no doubt as to who was Jesus and who was Mary.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Another favorite tool of mine

I was asked to share some of the antique tools that I use around the house.  So, I am starting with the kitchen.

Not sure if this actually qualifies as an antique or not....but, this oldie (from the 50's) gets used daily.  Often several times a day.  Its an old fashioned chopper. No electric needed, just some muscle.  I use it for olives, onions, nuts, peppers...about anything.

 I can use this, wash it and have it put back away in the amount of time it takes me to get out the electric food processor or the kitchen aid.

How to Carve a Turkey


Thursday, November 20, 2014

Why do these things ONLY HAPPEN TO ME? Gate was open...everything ( livestock wise) was at the neighbors. As soon as the cows heard the diesel motor they came running back to the correct pasture. 

Not the horses. After running our horses back in, and closing the gate....I discover that our new neighbors also have 2 brown horses and a black horse, just as we do. Upon closer inspection....2 of the 3 horses I have are the wrong ones. I open the gate again, and after some time, manage to get the correct horses....Then I close the gate. Before I am even back in the truck....they are jumping the fence to play with the new horses...(actually, I think they are arguing over who the alpha is). So again, I sort horses and get them back. Then, over the fence comes the neighbors black horse. I moved the truck closer to him and he jumped back where he was supposed to be. I'll give it 15 minutes and they will be in the wrong pastures again. 

And, thank you Bandit for teaching the other 5 horses how to open the gate, which will now need to be wired shut. 

The weird thing, throughout the entire rodeo...birds were riding on some of the horses backs......

On the positive side, I have 4 cows who are definitely pregnant.

My head and chest cold/sinus infection is on the upswing, but chasing these guys down, as me back coughing again.

Notice this only happens when I am the only one home, or when the husband is on nights and sleeping or out of town.  Murphys law.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

When the power goes out....

My neighbors get to go out to eat, or even stay in a hotel when the power goes out...Not us.

I have mentioned it on here several times before that we can go off grid, and keep on going (our biggest hangups right now are the fridge, freezer, and during the winter months keeping the stock tank from freezing).  Our kitchen is pretty much business as usual.  I can cook on my 1941 beauty, which requires no electric whatsoever.  (According to her manufacturing plate, she rolled off the factory floor just 3 weeks before the attack on Pearl Harbor)

 I also have a version of the "early kitchen aid".  And, I use it every few weeks or so.  (actually I have probably 3 or 4 of these around).

Yep, its an old hand crack cast iron food and meat grinder.  Here it is getting a workout grinding up boiled chicken breast.  It seems to do better with chicken than my Kitchen Aid does--one blade will shred it, while the other makes the pieces smaller, which is good for chicken salad.

My kitchen contains more antiques I think, than modern items.  And I use a good deal of them, unless they contain lead or are made of uncoated galvanized metal.

This grinder normally is attached on the right side of my husbands McDougall cabinet.  (It was taken off to be washed when this picture was taken).  A McDougall cabinet is very similar to a Hoosier cabinet, and both were made in Indiana back in the 1800's .  This one has a flour bin and a sugar bin, and all the glass for the bins and spices are still intact (which is not the norm for most older kitchen cabinets)

This cabinet also holds all my dehydrated foods from the garden--including onions, peppers, mint, beans and tomatoes.  Notice none are stored in plastic.  I am trying to avoid plastic for our food storage when possible, due to the chemicals that often leach out of plastics-especially when they store acidic foods.   Another note about dehydrated foods--one large wagon-full of onions dehydrated down to 4 quarts.   I re-hydrate them by soaking in water about 30 minutes before use-or if in a crockpot or slow cooking item, I just throw them in from the jar.

As for the fridge and freezers and stock tank...I have been keeping an eye out for a used propane run fridge and freezer (used in RV's and also by the Amish) and also for a propane or solar heated stock tank.  It is hard to find either one of them used, but one day hopefully one will turn up.  The fridge and freezer probably would not be used unless a power outage occurs, then we could move food over  to it if need be.

Friday, November 7, 2014

New Research that Women Need to Know

The latest research studies now prove that the socks that disappear in the washer and dryer during laundry day, actually turn into Tupperware lids that fit no Tupperware containers in your kitchen.
That explains a lot.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014


Your language, clothing choices, words and attitude observed by others defines you. You can be the richest person, but be low class. You can be the poorest person and be high class.  Your choice.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Shingles (and not on the roof)

Its been a rough last 3 weeks.  I managed to break out with the shingles.  Not a pleasant experience at all, and what I had was considered to be a "mild" case.

You don't "catch" shingles.  Shingles are what is left over (but silently hiding) from chicken pox.  The just hide there, for years and years.  Then, when you immune system is low, or you are under stress, they wake up.  And awake up they did.  First, I was itching.  I itched for almost a week, then the rash followed-in the same places as the itch.  I managed to keep the itch somewhat under control by taking 4 or more baths a day in lukewarm water with tea tree oil in in.  Then, lathering up in hydro-cortisone cream.  I also took extra B12 and D vitamins, which help with the nerves, which is where the shingles virus attacks.  Ibuprofen and benadryl also played a major role as well.

Normally you only get the shingles on one side of the body, along one nerve path.  Unless you are me-one of the few, who get it on both sides.

After about 15 days of the rash, the intense hot stabbing pain (nerve pain started).  It felt like hot sewing needles being poked into me.  The tea tree oil didn't want to help much there, but adding apple cider vinegar to the bath did help someone--and more ibuprofen.

My rash is 95% healed up now, and the nerve pain is reduced to just an occasional stab of pain.  The itching is mostly gone as well.

Shingles mainly hits those over 60, but anyone can get it at any age, providing they have already had the chickenpox, which I did as a baby.  there is a vaccination available, that can be given to those over 50.  It reduces your chances of getting the shingles by 50%.  If you do still get them, it is a milder case.  I am not 60 (but getting close), so I am in the targeted age group to have gotten it.

You can't spread shingles.  However, if you have open blisters or sores, you can give someone who has never had the chicken pox the chicken pox.  But, you can't give anyone the shingles.  You can also get the shingles more than once.  Some people tend to get it many times.  About 1 in every 3 over 60 will develop the shingles at some point.

My blisters were small.  Some people get huge ones.  My nerve pain (although it was very painful) only lasted a few days.  For some people, they never get nerve pain, or it only lasts a few days, few weeks, over a year, or may never go away.  For this reason, it is important that if you have a bad case, to see a doctor so that you don't end up being one of the few with permanent nerve damage.

As if all that is not enough, it also comes complete with headache, nausea and an upset stomach.  I managed to get that too--during race weekend.  Your skin becomes super sensitive.  I could literally feel the seams inside my clothing and the weight of buttons on my nightgown.  I could not shower, because the pressure of the water coming out of the shower hurt when it hit my skin.  It even hurt to wash my hair, although I had no rash on my head.

Once your rash heals to the point nothing is open, you are not considered to be contagious to pass the chicken pox.  So, I worked race weekend at the speedway.  Of course, since I did have the shingles, and was more active than I had been in days, and covered in clothes and gear, the heat built up, which created the itching to stir back up.  Then the nausea hit, followed by the headache and upset stomach.  That lasted 3 days.  Some people get all this at once.  For me, it seemed to hit in stages--just one thing after another.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

New coupon book

Well, I have worn out numerous coupon envelopes, 2 files, and 2 notebooks.  I had to come up with a new system, so here it is.

The huge 4 inch green notebook I have used for the last 3 years, finally bit the dust.

My latest coupon book.  I got it free off of Amazon, by using gift cards I got thru swagbucks.  Its zippered, and thats a nice thing when you drop it (providing it is zipped at the time you drop it)

I also added divided some of the categories down to make additional pockets, for easier finding of coupons while in the store.  For example, instead of my old "petfood", I now have "cat food" and another for "dog food".  They are kept in alphabetical order.

In the back, I still have a clear plastic sleeve for each of the stores I shop at.  That is where I keep their weekly store ad, their coupon policy, and any coupons I intend to use at their store.

My coupons come from the newspaper, and also from swagbucks coupon link (because if I use those, I get more points to turn into cash or gift cards), and from  I also keep my eyes out for coupons I see in the store on end caps and pealies.

Into Fall Activities

Daughter #3 graduated in May.  She is now a pre med chemistry major back in our home town.  That has worked well for us, since my parents still live there, my brother, we have strong church connections, and we still have a house there. Since she is a first year student, the university won't let her live in the house though.   However this week, her car almost caught on fire, due to a short in the wiring,  So, she is temporarily borrowing her boyfriends car.  He is attending school 30 miles from hers.

Daughter #4 shot in the 4H State .22 competition yesterday in Columbia. That ends most of our activities for last years 4H, but we are beginning this years 4H season.

We are having my house re-roofed in Warrensburg.  So we met with the roofer on the first trip, then bought all the needed supplies on the 2nd trip.

So yesterday, we had 1 trip to Lexington, 2 trips to Warrensburg and one trip to Columbia.  Daughter #3 went from Plattsburg to Lexington to Warrensburg, back to Lexington then back to Warrensburg because the boyfriends school books were accidentally left in his trunk and she had taken the car.

Next weekend is parents weekend, so another trip to Warrensburg.

The following weekend are the races at Kansas Speedway.  I work for fire and rescue for ISCS (Nascar) and daughter #5 cheer leading squad made it to state competitions in Columbia..  So that weekend we will have a trip to KS Speedway on Thurs and Friday.  Columbia on Saturday, then back to KS on Sunday, and if there is a rain delay, back to KS again on Monday.

Yesterday, we found that fuel was $2.98 in Columbia and $3.15 in Richmond.  We fueled up several times as we burned up highways 13 and 70.

Daughter #4 is spending her mornings homeschooling, and then taking 3 classes in the afternoon at the local high school.  So far, it seems to be working out.  I take her in at noon, and she is able to ride the bus home when classes are out.  This semester she is taking German, math, history, biology, personal finance, language, photography (takes it every semester), shooting sports (takes it every semester), and home ec (takes it every semester).  She is also looking at becoming a CPR instructor, so if she gets that in before the semester end, she will get some health credit as well.

Somewhere in the midst of all this running back and forth, I ran into something I am allergic too.  I am covered in itch hives.  I have not changed any products, so not sure of the culprit.  So, I have added some tea tree oil to my bath and it helps some, and taking benadryl as well.

Of course while all this is going on, I am still doing childcare and teaching cpr classes as well.  This semester however, we are not going to homeschool coop.  That is freeing up a lot of time for me, and a much needed break.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Please Help

Yesterday, my friend Susan lost her husband Marty.

But, her story starts before then, back at the beginning of the year.

Early this year, her family had a house fire.  They had no homeowners insurance.  So, they (Susan, Marty, and their 2 special needs sons)  moved into a small camping trailer, and proceeded to start gutting and repairing their home.

Then, in the spring of this year, Marty was diagnosed with a fast growing type of cancer, a form of leukemia.

In May, her dear grandmother passed away.

Yesterday, Marty passed away.

Some of you may already follow her blog.  She really has not updated it since Marty started getting sicker, as she was spending most of her time in the hospital with him.  She kept many of us updated on facebook.

She needs prayers, and of course money.  She and the young boys have no home, no income (Marty was the provider), medical bills and now a funeral to pay for.

Her blog is  On the right side of her blog is a paypal button to donate.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

How to fold a fitted sheet...

 I've done this for years. And, I store each set of my sheets and pillowcases for each bed inside one of the pillowcases for that set.  Keeps the closets neat.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Pork Chops...

This is our experiment dinner for tonight.  Pork chops, slow cooked in the roaster with apple juice, sliced onions, sliced apples, pineapple, green peppers, tomatoes and yellow squash.  (Everything was either already in the cabinet or growing outside).  I seasoned it only with salt, pepper and garlic.  

When it is done, I will add some sweet and sour sauce, and it will be served with rice.  

Desert will be cherry cheese cake.

Never tried it before, so will see how it goes over.  But, it does smell pretty good.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

This weeks shopping haul

This weeks shopping-CVS, Price Chopper & HyKlas. $60.01 (usually its lower than this, but cereal is a higher priced item). By combining the sales and coupons, and using the PC Quaker instant rebate, many items were 50 cents or under, or free. 2 packs bacon, 2 tubs cool whip, 3 packs of shortcakes, 2 bottles of soda, strawberries, melon, 14 boxes of pop-tarts, 13 boxes of cereal, 6 bottles shampoo, 2 tubes of toothpaste, 1 razor, 4 frebreezes, 2 blocks of cheese, head of lettuce, & a candy bar. No, you can't make a meal out of this--but since I shop the sales like this each week, I stock up, so that I always have items on hand to make a meal with. I also earned $11 of ECB's from CVS, so that $11 to come off of my CVS shopping next week. (In turn, this week I used the ECB from last week. ECB are coupons given by CVS that act like cash and are good for 30 days).
Sent to me on an email loop:

 We are hosting a NO-COST Home School Items and Books Exchange. Sunday, August 24 at 2 pm at Pioneer Homestead & Village 3564 Hwy. T, Rosebud, MO. Any questions, Call Clyde & Emma Zelch at Home 573-764-3719 Cell 573-202-3616
The idea is to have families bring items they no longer need, which can be used for home schooling, crafts, etc by other families attending. We will use the picnic tables under the pavilion to set out our goodies and we can each pick out our "new to us" items. While making certain that items we no longer need will go to a "new to someone else" home.
Our family personally has a lot of items to have on hand to exchange, such as: Reading, Math, Social Studies, Science for all grades! Curriculum such as Seton, My Fathers' World and Christian Light Education, etc. Workbooks, textbooks, Teachers' guides, Scholastic Readers, etc. Way too much to list everything!
I'm looking for items such as: Board Games, Pencils, Pens, Chalk, Notebooks, Binders, Folders, Glue, Scissors, Craft Items, Sewing Material, Yarn and some Christian Light Education Materials.
Please call or text and let me know who to expect. Bring the family along and make an afternoon of it. We can roast hot dogs and make s'mores. Call it a home school field trip day for the entire family!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014


Want to join 4-H?

Clay County 4-H invites you to join them on Thursday, September 4th at 6:00 p.m. 
at the Earnest Shepherd Youth Center at 610 E Shepherd Rd in Liberty MO.  

An informal parent meeting will be at 6:30 p.m.

If you are not in Clay County, click here to find the extension office in your area.  Contact them to find your local 4H clubs.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

New KC area homeschool co-op

Just a reminder that the newest Lee's Summit homeschool co-op, Teaching Children for Christ, is having an informational meeting TODAY (Tuesday)) at 825 NW Commerce Dr, Lee's Summit. We will start at 430p. Feel free to bring the kids as this is all about them. Please bring any and all ideas you have!!! More information is on our fb page....Teaching Children for Christ. We'll discuss/vote on classes, schedule, etc.....hope to see you there!!!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Homeschool Lego League

Forwarding information in case anyone is interested:
We are forming a homeschool First Lego League (FLL) group to compete in the 2014 FLL World Class challenge. This group is for students age 9-14 and each group consists of 6 to 10 students.

Everything Engineered will be providing the coach and classes will meet in North County (most likely at St Louis Community College) once or twice per week as required.

No class time has been selected yet as this will depend on the availability of the team members. We will survey those interested and come up with a schedule that will work for as many as possible.

Classes will start in late July to early August and the qualifier is in November at which time it will be decided if our team goes on to further competition. The group will remain in place as long as we wish.

Cost is $125 per student for the year and this covers coaching, national registration fees, local registration fees, use of a FLL kit setup (playing field), use of an EV3 core plus expansion kit, extra sensors not included in the kit, team t-shirts, & presentation materials. At this time we know of no other costs.

This event is to find interested students. If you have been invited and know of another area homeschool student who might be interested please invite them. We need to get the word out.
We are trying to determine interest at this time. If you are interested or have any questions you can check out our Facebook event page:
or contact Tricia Furman .

Monday, July 7, 2014

Liberty MO Homeschool Chess Club

The homeschool chess club is starting a new session this Tuesday.  The chess club will meet Tuesdays for 5 weeks from 10:30AM -11:15 at The Liberty United Methodist Church 1001 Sunset Ave, Liberty, MO 64068. The chess club will meet July 8th, 15th, 22nd, 29th and August 5th in Room 107.

  • The Kansas City Chess Club chess curriculum will guide students from Pawn to King level advancement. Progress will be measured by a chess skills test taken at the end of each level. Students may participate as a team against other schools at local chess tournaments.

    Ken Fee and his staff of certified chess instructors from The Kansas City Chess Club will be teaching players about important rules, chess etiquette, strategy, openings, endgames, and tactics. Research says chess improves test scores on Math and Reading!

    Ken Fee is a nationally certified chess coach and tournament director at The Kansas City Chess Club. Ken plays tournament chess and has coached numerous Missouri and Kansas State Chess Champions.
    Registration due by July 8th Cost $30 -5 Weeks

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Cherry Chicken Salad

Perfect for hot summer days.


  • 1 (regular size) can chunk pineapple, drained
  • 4 cups cubed cooked chicken
  • 3/4 cup chopped celery
  • 1 lb. bing cherries, pitted and halved
  • 1 cup Miracle Whip or Kraft Dressing, mayo could also be used
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 2 Tbsp milk
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • seasoned salt, to taste


In large bowl, combine chicken, celery, onions, seasoned salt, and pepper and toss lightly. Add cherries and pineapple and mix lightly.
In a small bowl, combine salad dressing, sour cream, milk, lemon juice, and sugar. Stir until smooth. Pour over chicken mixture and stir lightly.

Refrigerate for several hours before serving.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014


Public Auction
Saturday, June 28, 2014
170 2nd St, Holt MO @ Holt Christian Church
(one block off of 33 hwy, across from city park)
Announcements @ 9:45 a.m.
Start time 10:00 a.m. SHARP

 This is a benefit auction comprised of items from 3 estates and several individuals who donated items
to our church youth to resell.  Money raised will be for church camp, conferences, youth activities and other
church related items.

*No items removed until settled for.  State issued photo id required for checks.

·       Coffee tables, end tables
·       Dining room table with chairs & matching hutch
·       Miscellaneous Household items
·       Entertainment center
·       Antique logging blades
·       Vintage glassware
·       Antique dressers
·       Tools
·       Collectibles
·       Roll top desk
·       Workbenches
·       Stock tanks
·       Various household furniture
·       Piano
·       Vacuum pump
·       Sporting items
·       Home decor
·       Electronic Organ
·       Framed art
·       Bookshelves
·       Storage cabinets
·       Medical equipment
·       Luggage
·       Books
·       Wall partitions
·       Desks
·       Too many items to list

*No items removed until settled for.  State issued photo id required for checks.