Becky's Farm Life

The simple life, living off God's land, one day at a time.

Me, Write a book?

Tommy has asked me for many years to write a book about what we as a family have been through, the ways we live, the ways the Lord has worked in our lives,  our up and downs, how I cook and canning , run a farm,etc.  Something to leave the kids.  And I have had a few comments asking me to write a book. I have been writing a daily paper  journal about our family lives for years now, 12 + books are full.

Well I found a place that will turn your blog into a book for you at a reasonable price. So as a first step to please my husband, I am working so doing that.  The only draw back is that the site only uses Blogger blogs. So I am transferring the post there and all the comments from here.  It will take me a while to type in all my journals, to be able to get them in book form. And I will set up a different blog on blogger to do this.  Am I trying to sell the books? I am not sure, this is new to me. So for now I’ll do them for the kids and see where the Lord leads.  I would have never dreamed of writing a book. So I am not sure where this all will lead. Do any of you have any thoughts on this? I would really like to know your very honest answers. Would you want to buy a book about Jordan’s Farm and family life??

Becky

February 13, 2009 Posted by | creativity, family, farm life, farming, food storage, garden, ideas, making do, recipes, saving money, self sufficiency, Stocking up | , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

An Old Treat — Fast Donuts

Last night I made an old treat here. I have made it before but not for many,many years. 

Fast  Donuts

  • buy a can of the cheapest canned biscuits you can find.
  • you will need a deep fryer, like for french fries, or a deep pan with oil.
  • a donut topping: cake frosting, cinnamon and sugar, powdered sugar, a glaze, jelly, whatever you like
  • open the can of biscuits, flatten each one ( can even stick your finger in the middle if you want a hole there)
  • then drop into hot oil, brown each side
  • allow to cool just a bit, not to much, just enough to be able to handle
  • then add your topping
  • these are not as good when cold, but I had no left overs, so no problem there.

Tommy and TommieLynn  loved  them and asked when I was making more.  I just laughed.  I know there are homemade recipes out there but these are fast donuts.  I paid 35 cents for a can of 10 biscuits, and had some left over frosting from a cake.   If you find a good sale on canned biscuits, open them up and wrap each biscuit  in wax paper and place the number you want to use each time in a freezer bag and freeze them.   My Granny made these when I was a kid, and we all loved them. 

Beware they disappear faster then you can get them cooked.

Becky

January 31, 2009 Posted by | creativity, ideas, making do, recipes | , , , | 6 Comments

Winter is coming fast here

It’s getting cold here fast. We were to have our first hard freeze last night. Which means I had a lot to do yesterday outside. And it only got to 50 here as a high. I’m not ready yet.
Covered the big water tank with more old blankets, then cover it with a dark colored trap.

Tommy a few years ago made a box to go over the outside water spigots. I had to remount it over the spigots, and get a new light bulb. It’s a pig tail light, that hangs down over the spigots. The light is plugged in at night. Since doing this our spigots have never froze. I’ll try and post a photo as soon as I can.

I got out all the animal water heaters out, and I’ll clean them today and put them in the waters.

I have to close in the rest of the new chicken house for this years chickens. Tommy has not felt like finishing it.

Add more hay to the chicken houses.

Get the truckers filled with antifreeze- and the gas run out of all mowers/tractors, etc. Get the generator filled with gas, and make sure it runs. Tommy usually does this, but he has not been out of the house for weeks now. And I’m having a hard time remembering every thing he does to get everything(outside) ready for winter. So if you think I have forgot something, please tell me.( you men out there, what am I forgetting?) Right now my mind is on overload.

I covered up things that will stay out in the weather all winter( I can’t move them under shelter).

I would like to cover windows with plastic, but will have to wait and see if I can get help, I don’t do heights will.

Our gas heaters are working well. I got out the 110 heater  and it works.

I closed the inside vent hole (in ceiling) in the food barn. Now just have to close the outside vent hole. My son has covered all house vents already.

It seems this years winter is coming in faster than before. And I still have so much to do.

Tommy had a really hard day and night. He is still getting sick. Now it’s hard for him to even keep water down. Please keep praying for him.

I have really been studying and looking into herbs and there uses, how I can use them, which of them I can grow here, getting them ready for use and storage. A few of the herbs I already grow. I had a small boil/bite on my neck. I talked to a friend who uses herbs. She told me to make a onion and potato poultice and put it on the boil/bite. To draw out what ever was in there. It worked. Even if I smelled funny for a little bit. It still amazes me how the Lord puts things on this earth to heal us. How far I get into the use of herbs is up to the Lord. I don’t know His plans here yet, other than this is were He is leading me now.

Looking back, I never would of dreamed of doing all I’m doing now, not this city girl. Talk about a total life style change. The Lord has brought me a long way. And I’m thankful He is not done with me yet.

Well I had better get this day started. Hope you all are nice and warm. May God bless your day today.

Becky

 

 

October 29, 2008 Posted by | creativity, herbs, ideas, making do, self sufficiency, winter | , , , , , | 6 Comments

Homemade Ideas and Memories

Well I have been up since 3:30 am with Tommy this morning. I got him settled and back to bed, now I’m wide a wake. So here I am, I can do this quietly.

Turns out that we all really like using the flannel napkins and tissues. Because some of them are so cute even my 11 yr. old has stopped using her clothes to wipe her nose. She now is always carrying one around with her. And showing them off to all her friends.

You say you can’t sew a straight line. So,who cares. I don’t know of any sewing police out there. No sewing machine, hand sew. I did for 5 years before I got a machine, or borrow one. Not all my lines are straight. I am no master sewer. I do the best I can and that’s it.  I know your family is not doing to say, “I’m not using this, the lines are not straight.”

Yesterday, at the thrift store, I found some really cute flannel baby blankets for 10 cents each. I bought what they had, 5. I will just cut these into fourths, and only have to hem two sides. This is a time saver. I still have not finished all the others yet. But they are using them, and liking it and you can’t beat the price.

I also found those  small square baby  water proof changing pads for 10 cents each.  And bought 4, this was all they had.(we have a lot of wood furniture in our home).  These I will cut some into coasters for drinks, some put under plants, and I have 2 uncut ones on my dryer under the clothes soap and vinegar. ( so as not to farther rust the top of my dryer, which we have had for 13+ years now). I have some cut to go between the homemade pads and underwear for leak protection, they are very bendable. When they are dirty, just wash and dry them. When they are cut they do not have to be hemmed, oh what a blessing. Usually one side is a solid  color and the other at times has a pattern on it.  You could always sew a piece of fabric on top to match the colors in your home.

The bigger crib/chair/bed water proof pads: can be cover with  fabric on top and used in to bathroom when getting out of the shower (shower mat). No more wet floors and its washable, without the backing wearing off. These bigger pads I have picked up used for $.50 to $1.00. The top fabric can easily be changed as needed.  These can be used too, for homemade pads, just add a soft top, but do not sew down middle, just outside edges. Do not sew in the middle, just sew the fabric to the outside edges, when making a shower mat. As sewing in the middle will cause them to leak where the needle has gone through.

Those nice quilted mattress covers, at thrift stores here sell for about a dollar. They can be used to make pot holders, and batting in quilts. I made one quilt using this, and it was so much easier. As the cover was already quilted, no more batting balling up when washed. So what if there is a few stains, wash and use, who is going to take it part to see the stains. They can be cut to go into homemade pads too as the center. Or used to make a chair cushion, or foot stool pads. Just sew layers together until you get the thickness you want. 

Earlier before I left for town Saturday morning, Tommy asked me to buy a pumpkin, for him and Tommielynn to carve. As we have never carved one. Tommielynn picked out the biggest one she could carry. When we got home she had to bring it in to show her daddy. The smiles on both their faces and the laughter in their voices was worth more than $6. Tommy can no longer run outside to watch her do something new, or play with her like he used too. Carving a pumpkin, he can do in the house sitting down, and do it with her. It’s the little things in life that make the best memories. This will be one I will never forget.

With hard times hitting everyone, please take some time to make some happy memories of your own. Once today is gone, you can not get it back. The best happy memories are usually free or very cheap.

God bless you all,

Becky

 

 

 

October 26, 2008 Posted by | creativity, ideas, making do, saving money, self sufficiency, sewing | , , , , , | 7 Comments

Road Ahead – Part 2

The Encyclopedia of Country Living , An Old Fashioned Recipe Book

By: Carla Emery

The Encyclopedia of Country Living

This is a great book. And a must have for everyone.  Even if you don’t live on a farm, or you don’t want to grow your own food, you want nothing to with animals. This book has everything in it. In hard times, this book will tell you how to do everything and in good times, it’ll make your life easier. I usually do not talk highly of books. But please try and get this book, ask for it as a gift, or save your change, give it as a gift.  It will be the very best investment you can make. The book price runs $20 -$30, see if you can go in half’s with a friend to start with. I know this is a lot on money right now, but I know you will not be sorry. If I could only have one book, this would be it.  The book photo shows the edition I have, but there is a newer one( I’m saving my change to get it).

To get a look at the inside of the book click this link: http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/1570615535/ref=sib_dp_pop_fc?ie=UTF8&p=S001#reader-link

To see about price and ordering here: http://www.amazon.com/Encyclopedia-Country-Living-Carla-Emery/dp/1570615535/ref=si3_rdr_bb_product

Water Storage

I know I gave you a few links but I want to do a little more as this is a very needed thing. Before we got our storage water tank, these are ways/ were I stored water. They say to store 3 -7 days water. But I took it a little farther, 1 month. You say that’s a lot of water, not really if you reuse it.

Ways/were/reuse

  • fill 2 liter bottles and stick in closets, under beds, in the freezer( if you lose power, they can be put in coolers to keep things cold, then as they melt you have drinking water)
  • 5 gallon buckets with lids ( the old paint buckets, use this water to flush the toilets, only) some of these can be left outside to freeze as long as they are not filled to the rim. I did store some in the outside sheds and barns. When a bucket became empty, I filled it with water. If I really needed the bucket for something else, just dump out the water and dry.
  • Water needs to be stored were no sun light can get to the water.  our water tank is almost clear and sits outside on it’s own little deck. At the thrift store, I bought old blankets and covered the tank. And it worked great. No green water for two years now. The blankets also help to keep the water from freezing in the winter. On top of the blankets (in winter time) I place a dark colored trap, which helps to keep the water from freezing. On the neck part, where the water comes out, I wrap it in old wool sweaters. And it worked to keep it from freezing.
  • Save the water you use to rinse the dishes and wash hands in, and put it in a 5 gal. bucket in the bath room, to use to flush the toilet.
  • Plastic trash cans (unused, new) with lids, to store water in, if they have to be left out side, do not fill full. Used cans can be filled for flushing toilet.
  • If you know ahead of time that a storm is coming: fill your washing machine , bathtub, any large pot and pans you might have, coolers,  up.  Then use this water first, before using your stored water. I have two of those 5 gallon drinking coolers on my front porch, year round, and change the water once a month. They have never froze, but we usually don’t get colder than about 0. 
  • For those of you who do canning, take your extra jars and can some water. I have some 1/2 gallon jars, that you are really not to can food in (nothing but apple juice), I use these to can water. This water can be used to clean wounds, to drink, etc.
  • Milk jugs really are not strong enough to store water in. And they leak so easily. Reuse plastic juice bottles, 2 liter bottles, 16 oz. soda/water bottles.
  • The big tub plastic tots with lids are good to store water in. Throw a sheet over them and you have a little table. 
  • Use the water in your hot water heater. I’m not sure I’d drink it, but can be used for washing and toilets.
  • If your stored water turns green, use it to flush the toilet.

I went one time with very little water stored, for three days. I was not a happy camper. It just takes one time for me.  You might think I store to much water, well we’ll see. This is the most important thing I store, and I’ll not be caught short handed again. And I really do not want any of you to come up short here. It’s not a pretty sight.

With a hard winter coming it’s best to store some water. Why? What if you can’t pay your power bill on time and it takes you a few days to get the money up? What if a big storm comes? What if your well goes dry/pump breaks? What if the city water lines break or go down or run out of water?The what if’s are endless. Please store some water. It does not cost to store water. Just look around your home for things to use. Everyone is storing food and other things getting ready for winter and the hard times ahead. How is your water storage? How many days can you go?

 

Until next time,

Becky

 

 

Becky’s Farm Life 

All the these posts will be tagged as “Road Ahead” and other tags, but to see just these, click on the tag “Road Ahead” in the categories drop down box.  I thought about giving these posts their own tab, but I think this will work better. And make it easier for you all to get too.

 

October 14, 2008 Posted by | creativity, great book, ideas, making do, recession, Road Ahead, self sufficiency, water storage | , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Low Cost Gifts Giving Ideas

That time of year again, but these ideas will work for any gift giving time.

At thrift stores, dollar stores, etc. get baskets, big bowl, plastic boxes with lids, etc. and fill them with little things the person would like.

You can make family baskets( put things in for everyone in family), kids baskets, guest baskets(you didn’t know they were coming), etc.

Fill with:

  1. homemade clothes, dish cloths, hats, mittens, pot holders, placemats,etc. (what ever you can make)
  2. little bags of baked goods, candies, drink mixes (packets of hot cocoa, or tea bags)etc. You don’t bake, buy a bag of cookies, bag of candy, box of hot choc. mix packets and put in those fold top sandwich bags and tie with a ribbon.
  3. candles
  4. for kids: a small toy, book, puzzle, colored pencils, markers, etc.
  5. adult: small book, pens ( we can never find one when we need it)
  6. buy a pack of socks and split it up, one pair per basket
  7. the bath cubes that come in packs of 4-6, put one in each basket
  8. get a bar of homemade soap from someone and cut it in 4ths and put in 4 baskets
  9. for the men: socks, small tool set or tools, crossword books, small books, a quart of oil
  10. a box of tissues or the travel tissues (always needed)
  11. for those of you who have had gardens: add a few potatoes, carrots, apples, jar of canned food, etc
  12. for those who didn’t garden, get a bag of potatoes, carrots, etc and split between baskets
  13. a pack of those garden tools, usually 3 tools per bag, and out one tool per basket, and usually at the dollar stores for a dollar
  14. those little debbie cakes boxes, and out one in each basket
  15. If you know someone is really having a hard time, add things like: a roll of bath paper, bar of soap, small bottle of dish soap, small box/bottle of clothes soap, to the baskets.
  16. a can of beef stew, soups, etc.
  17. box of crackers, with one of the 4 packs in each basket
  18. for someone who sews: a pack of needles, thread
  19. box of band-aids: put a few in each basket. for kids get a box of the cute kid band-aids.
  20. cake mixes, muffin mixes
  21. roll of duct tape ( always needed a round a house)
  22. get new looking coffee cups at thrift store ( usually only cost .10-.25)
  23. get a 12 pack of dishcloths or wash rags and put 1-2 in each basket, same with hand towels
  24. books are great, even when lightly used.
  25. for those of you who used yarn, put your small balls of left over yarn in kid baskets for them to do crafts with, or to another person who uses yarn. same with your leftover materials from your sewing .

There are so many different things to put in the baskets. And this year is going to be hard on every one. Think about the little things you’d want. I would rather give things I know will be used, than give something that will just sit on a table. Most kids would like a lot of different things they can use and play with than one really costly toy. Think of the long hard winter ahead, what would your person used/ need to make it a little easier.

The kids baskets/plastic boxes with lids, you could wrap all the small things, as kids really like to open this.

For the person that is in the kitchen a lot use a big bowl instead of a basket.

Other adults and teenagers use the plastic boxes with lids as they can be reused later.

Instead of buying boxes to wrap things in, save your boxes food comes in( cereal boxes, cake boxes, etc). We do this and it’s fun. The kids will say,”I got cereal,cake mix etc.”And we all laugh.

And I don’t wrap the baskets/bowls/plastic boxes, I just tie a ribbon around them. This save on wrapping paper and tape.

What are your ideas? What would you put in your baskets/ bowls/boxes?

Have fun filling your baskets.

Becky

 

October 1, 2008 Posted by | creativity, gift giving, ideas, making do, saving money | , , , , | 2 Comments

My first time with Gourds – Drying – Photos

Ok, I try to do something new every year on the farm. This year it was gourds. We want to make different things, to try and sell them. They would sell good in this area. Well, I picked them yesterday. I think they turned out so neat, they are dipper gourds. I got a few that will be dippers, bowls, bird houses.

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Well, being it was my first time with gourds, I called a friends to see now to dry them. She said I could put them in the hay barn, on the hay, and turn them daily. I really don’t have time for that. So I hit the Internet looking for how to dry.

I found that most people tied a string around the top stem and hang from the porch. I thought that easy, no turning. So I started getting them ready to put out. Tommy came in and said,” Dear they will not stay on that string, they will fall off as them dry and the stem gets smaller.” I said, “But that’s how they are doing it on the Internet.” And I got them all hung on the porch.

Right as I put the last one up, I heard a crash on the front porch. I went to see, one of my best looking gourds on the ground busted. As I was going in the house , an other one fell. So I took them all down and put them back in the house.

The ones that broke.

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I told Tommy he was right.And this is his, ” I told you”,smile.

Boy,I just thought he was hard headed.

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So Tommy made a little sling like thing for the gourds to hang in safely. But it would have taken us hours to make a sling for each one. Here on the farm, there never seems to be enough time for everything. So I put on my ,” What do I have that I can use to hang them safely with”. After looking at Tommy’s homemade sling, I remembered I had a lot of the mesh potatoes sacks. ( as Tommy says I never throw away any thing). So I ran and got one to see if it would work. IT DID! So I got them all hung on the porch, and no turning daily. Thank you Lord. 

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The next step is to let them dry 3-4 weeks, they will get a black type mold on them, that is washed off and they are dried and get hung back up to finish drying.

I will post as I do them.

Have a great day.

Becky

 

 

September 28, 2008 Posted by | creativity, gourds, ideas, making do, self sufficiency | , , , , | 3 Comments

This and That on the Farm – 9/24

This comment was left on ” I have a Friend” and it’s great and I wanted everyone to see it. Thank you Linda J.

“…if all things are in His hand, if the very hairs of our head are numbered; if every event, great and small, is under the direction of His Providence and purpose; and if He has a wise, holy and gracious end in view, to which everything that happens is subordinate and subservient;–then we have nothing to do, but with patience and humility to follow as He leads, and cheerfully to expect a happy issue….How happy are they who can resign all to Him, see His hand in every dispensation, and believe that He chooses better for them than they possibly could for themselves!” ~John Newton, who wrote the hymn, “Amazing Grace”

A friend of ours let us borrow his living weed eater, goat. We are trying to clear out an area, so the cows can have a little more room. This area used to be the goat pen,  then was a pig pen. Well, at about dusk the goat was running around the yard.  Our friend had always keep him on a chain and just moved him around as needed. So the goat does not really like people, he runs from them. Yet, all my animals run to me, which makes catching them so easy, except it gets a little hairy when you have a 900 lb.+ cow coming at you. OK, back to this goat on the run. He had broke his collar, no fixing it. We got him , and used a rope to hold him. While
I tried to find another collar. Ok, I live on a farm and have animal bottles of all sizes and shapes, and I thought every thing needed to run a farm.

But there was no collar on the farm. I had think of something as the goat would go through the fence with the cows in it, and it’s getting dark. Here is what I did, and goat was not to happy. I found a calf halter and put in on him. And yes it was big on him, Tommy had to cut another hole in it to get it as tight as we could. And let me tell you that goats can dance. He tried for over an hour to get it off.

 

Now for gas here. A friend called yesterday and said that our area was very low, or out of gas. One gas tanker was splitting the gas between 4 stations. For about 40 miles around us there is no gas. They are not sure when it’ll come in. When Tommy came home Monday, he said the gas station , less than a mile from home was out of gas, and the next station 6 miles up the road had a 10 gallon limit. So he filled up the truck. Which now I am thankful he did. With the new little truck, we can go to town 3 1/2 times in gas for what we only got 1 trip with the other truck. Thank you Lord. And thank you Lord the worry and fear bug had no hold this time, I had Your peace! And last nights News was not much better, but I got my peace.

 

I am having to get more creative. Here are some more of my new ways of saving money:

  1. I use freezer bags, but have not been washing them out and reusing them. ( don’t reuse the ones that have held meat in them. I use freezer paper for my meats.) But now I’m washing them out. I have seen those little bag drier stands, costing about $20+. I will not pay that. So at the thrift store I found a small set of Tinker toys for a $.25, and got them. And made my own bag drier and it sits on top of the drier. I’ll post a photo in a day or two.
  2. The AC was turned off in the food barn. And the windows were opened and a fan turned on. This will really drop the bill.
  3. I willing be making my own clothes soap this week.( will post photos later).
  4. Will start back making our own bread as a store loaf here is over $2.50.
  5. Even my 11 yr old daughter is getting creative, she has 3-4 new grilled cheese ways.
  6. Tommy is getting up some fire wood. Not knowing what this winter will bring, we are preparing for the worse and praying for the best. We do not have a wood heater but I will be able to cook. The cooking/heating gas has already gone way up and winter is not here yet.
  7. I am making everyone wool house socks. Our floors are so cold in the winter. And the heat this year will be keep on low. I guess I will not be able to wear shorts in the house this winter. And I’m looking into getting my daughter sweat suits to wear to bed this winter, as she does not like to cover up or likes to kick them off.
  8. Water- We have a 425 gallon tank in our back yard. ( I need to change the water below winter) You can save any bottles you have and fill with water. The bottles that had soaps of some kind in it, fill with water, they can be used to wash dishes, hands, etc. Other bottles for drinking/ cooking water. And the bottles can be stuck anywhere it does not freeze. Fill bottles almost full and let freeze, to put in coolers for when power out.

We were blessed this week, when a family up the road was moving out. Tommy trade a few ladders, transit, air compressor for a 12′ X 16′ building. They could not move it on the highway, but can be moved to our house. It is dried in, has a roof, a small loft in it, cedar siding almost done on the outside. It is so nice, looks like a little cabin. Well Tommy said I could have it. He had a  trailer frame  here in which to make me one, but this one is so close to done and the trade was good for both of us. The family could not take it, but needed the tools. The Lord is so good. It will be a sewing/ guest house. I can’t wait to get it here so as I can fix it up the way I want. You see, we rent so I can’t fix up much here. But the new little house is mine, oh what fun I am going to have. We’ll put the bunk bed set we just got ( twin on top and full on bottom, which slides up to make like a couch.) The loft will be great for all the kids to sleep. They are pulling it down here this coming Saturday.

 

I have to go to town today to get food and feed. Boy, I sure hate going to town. I don’t need much, but I really need the animal feed. So I’ll get the few other things I can’t make. Like bath paper, sugar, oil, goat collar. I have been reading others post about the prices of everything going up, so I’m glad my list is short. Anyone know how to make bath paper? I’m willing to try it.

 

Well I better get going and see what great deals can be found in town today.

May you all have a blessed day,

Becky

 

 

 

 

September 24, 2008 Posted by | blessings, creativity, farming, Food prices, gas prices, ideas, making do, recession, saving money, self sufficiency, winter | , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Things are a little tighter so far this month.

The  disability check didn’t go far this month and this month is not even half way over yet. Why? I’m not really sure. I have been trying to figure that out. And the only thing I can think of right off hand is more trips to doctors, GAS. No extra trips (fun,just to get out,etc.) to town. Ok,time to get more creative with what I have. We just trade one of our big trucks for a smaller stick shift truck, but will have to wait until next month to get it on the road. That will help a great deal on the gas. Our food supply is good, Thank you, Lord. We have a roof over our heads, power is on, clothes on our back, and we will make it through this month. God has never let us down, and He’s never left us. So why am I posting all of this? Well this is my life on the farm and in this world. Just maybe it’ll help someone else make  it another month, or they’ll become more thankful for what they have. I know some of the blogs I read and keep up with, do that for me. I see that there are others out there like me or are in worse shape then me. I learn from others along the way and pray for those in need.  Sometimes something in some one else’s blog- renews my strength and brightens my day, or just brings a needed smile to my face. So I am not sure what you, the reader, will get from this post, but I pray you are blessed in some  way.

I have been canning more potatoes, and milk, freezing cream. It really needs to cool off some here so as I can make butter. It’s still in the 90’s at 5pm here.  My freezer is almost full of cream. The garden is almost done for this year, I have two rows of potatoes left to dug up. But it’s been really hot and we do not have a cellar, and I wanted to have some uncanned potatoes for the winter.  So I’ll leave them in the ground just a little longer. 

Our friends had to move out of state to find work. So they blessed us with a new looking couch( Tommy lays here to take his breathing treatments, and our old one had him just about laying on the floor. We really needed a new one), a bunk bed set( twin on top and full on bottom. which I put in our other room, for when family comes), an outside glass top table with four chairs, a gliding rocker, and a few other things. All these things were a wonderful blessing. It felt like Christmas. Our friends will be greatly missed, but they said they’d be back. The Lord used them to bless us. He’s still watching out for us.

On to a brighter note: 387 + people in the last 30 days have looked at the Canning Potatoes post. That’s a blessing to me. I know here potatoes have went way, way up in price. So if you find them on sale, can some.  If you canned potatoes for the first time, please let me know how it went for you.

In the recipes tab at the top: Comment #7 from Stacie tells how canning butter turned out. I have not try it yet but she did and lets us know how it went. Thank you Stacie.

There are a lot of you who are first year canners, How is it going so far?

Well this was just on my mind and had to get it out. Hope you all have a wonderful day.

Until next time, and God bless you all,

Becky

 

P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for the give away. Please allow me to bless one of you.   Click here to find out more. Drawing is tomorrow evening.

 

September 8, 2008 Posted by | blessings, Canning, creativity, disability check, give away, low income, making do | , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Low Income – Disability Check – Recession

This year is hard on everyone with the recession : high gas prices – high food prices – job cut backs – no jobs – etc.  I wanted to share how we are making it on just a disability check of $996 a month for 3 people. This is our second month living off of it, and it was a little hairy last month but better this month.

With this check, we first pay the rent, power and phone bills. And we are left with $ 211. The $211 is used for: food, gas for the truck, truck ins., soaps and etc., and animal food. And this can be tricky and overwhelming, but so far we are doing it.

The rent bill, we can not lower.

The power bill: is high in the summer due to having to run a AC in the food barn (which holds a years supply of food) , in the winter: we use gas to heat with so power bill will drop but then we have to add back the gas bill. Everything is turned off when not in use.

The phone bill: is a little high but it includes- free long distant and a toll free number ( for family and friends to call), and our Internet which is used for school and to find new ways to save money.   

Some ways we are saving money, not spending money, doing without wants, new ways of doing things:

  1. We started last year storing and stocking up on food and other house hold goods. Which I am so thankful we did because we would be having a hard time now if I had not. And we put a beef cow in the freezer a few weeks ago. So our meat is good and will last 1  1/2 to 2 years.
  2. Our milk cow is giving us 21+ gallons of milk a week, chicken give us eggs ( 80+ a week) and meat, and vegs from the garden. You can do a lot with milk and eggs including feeding cats and dogs.
  3. We only go to town twice a month. I’d like to get it down to once a month but I’m not there yet.  A trip to town cost us $30 in gas round trip.
  4.  Bought power strips to plug in the TV, VCR,  etc., so as they can be turned off all the way when not in use.
  5. Lower watt light bulbs
  6. Home school books left over from older kids, another 4 years worth left before I need to buy more.
  7. We do not eat out, and our sweets are homemade. I do buy cereal as I have not learned yet to make it.  The good, low sugar kind- the good for you kind.
  8. I make a lot of my cleaners, clothes soap, monthly pads, dish clothes, cloth napkins, socks ( I buy wool sweaters from the thrift store, and take them apart for the wool.)
  9. I do use my dishwasher but I don’t use my clothes dryer. I chose to give up using the dryer so I could use the dish washer. And it is only ran once or twice a day.
  10. I chose to have Internet over dish/cable TV. We have air TV and get 3 channels (ABC, NBC, CBS),  we think that is enough for us.
  11. We fix things when they break not buy new. I love DUCT tape, but hubby does not. Oh, well I still sneak it in once in a while.
  12. We save for things that are needed. We don’t rent to own, where you end up paying twice. Now there is nothing wrong with people who choose this, as I know it’s their only way. But we chose not to.
  13. When I go to the store, I only buy things on sale. I plan my menu on what I have on hand.   And at times it’s been hard, as you ladies know sometimes you just want something you don’t have on hand.
  14.  You really have to learn to give some things up but not everything.  We have all of our needs meet and still have a few of our wants. It’s hardest on the kids. But I have been giving mine a choose of things. I just don’t say no. I ask her, “Would you like this or that? or Do you want to do this or have that?” Recently she wanted to go to the pool, well we did not have the gas money. Which I told her, she said ok and went out side to play. She came back in a while later and asked,” Mom, can I use that big roll of plastic to make a water slide?” I said sure. She found a way to have fun with out spending a penny. I am so proud of her.
  15.  Read a lot. There are so many ways to learn something new.
  16. Pray a lot. Count your every blessing both big and small.
  17. Remember this earth is not our home. I say, Earth and living here is our boot camp for heaven.

I know it’s going to be a long hard winter for everyone. And we might have to give up some things for a while. But the sun will come out again, this I know. I know some of you are working with a income lower than ours. Some of you may not be able to pay your rent or buy food. And I’m really sorry, I wish I could be of more help to you, but I’ll pray for you. Maybe some of my ideas will help you, at least I pray they do.

 

I will list more things as they come to mind on saving money, etc. And I’ll let you know when I find great web sites, too.

Well I better go for now, work to do. Hope you all have a blessed day.

Becky

August 27, 2008 Posted by | creativity, disability check, Food prices, food storage, ideas, low income, making do, recession, saving money, self sufficiency, Stocking up | , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments