Saving Money and Weekly Update–July 16, 2017


IMG_4910Sometimes, part of saving money is earning money.  It was time for me to roll up my sleeves and get back to work after being on vacation for over a week.  Because Rob, Lovana and Ja’Ana went to high school church camp on Thursday, and Patsy was at camp until Friday, I had some extra time to devote to Jake.  So, I’ve worked over 8 hours for the past 5 days.  Patsy joined in when she got home. This is the two of them in front of the largest Black Cottonwood tree in the nation.  It’s at Mission Bottom State Park.

It was a good thing I had spare time, because his mom and dad had a huge job in front of them, along with my sister going to work several days.  (Brother-in-law is a college professor, so is off for the summer–but he was gone an entire day, helping transport the youth to camp, and worked on the project all day, every day).  They were told only a few days ago that the contractors were showing up Monday morning for a huge remodel they have had planned for quite some time.  It was “we are not sure when we’ll start”—then “actually, we’ll be there Monday at 8.”  So, their entire kitchen had to be emptied.  And, the family room.  And the living room.  And the dining room.  But, wait.  The garage had to be totally cleaned so that there was somewhere to put it all.  And, a little kitchen and living area set up out there for them to use during the remodel.  What a job!!!  They have been working every spare minute since they found out.  When they left my house around 3 today, they were going home to tackle it and finish it–no matter how long it takes.  I kept both Michaela and Jake for the night tonight.  We are heading for the zoo first thing in the morning.


I’m planning another post on how I’ve kept Jake busy while helping him learn.  We’ve been working on handling money, reading, chores, and more.  We’ve done too many things to put down here right now, but one highlight was a classic car show we happened upon.  It was in a church parking lot and was entirely free.  He LOVED it!  The purple one was his favorite.


So did Patsy.  I was so glad we stopped.


We had a family BBQ today, here at my house.  I bought a $1, 2-litre container of seltzer water, and Patsy made lemonade from bottled lemon juice, sugar and water.  We got some Bugles for $1, and a package of Paw-shaped Cheetos for under $2 at Winco.  I made lettuce salad, since I have so much growing in the garden.  I also made garlic green beans from the beans I picked.  Others brought fruit salad, potato salad and ice cream.  I barbecued.  Yes, me.  Rob is not here.  Amazingly, it turned out!  Because I don’t barbecue, as a rule, I checked it too many times, so it took longer than usual, because I was lifting the lid too frequently.  At least nothing burned.  I did a package of drumsticks, with just Lowrie’s seasoning salt on them.  I marinated 3 chicken breasts in home-make teriyaki sauce.  Last, I bought a bag of frozen, easy-peel shrimp and made kabobs with them.  I put home-canned peach-mango salsa on them for about an hour and barbequed them for only about 5-6 minutes.  Of course, there were a few hot dogs for Michaela.  I purposely made extra and sent it home with people.  Even with all that meat and shrimp, I was well under $20 for my part.  That gives me a huge sense of satisfaction.  It tasted great, we had a great time of visiting, and we could hardly have fed 2 people at a restaurant for what I spent.


Although we were celebrating birthdays, we decided to keep it simple and not have cake.  We enjoyed ice cream, a true summer treat.  Since lots of the family members are away right now, it was a smaller-than-usual crowd, but we had a really nice time visiting.


My mom liked her gift.  We all went together on it to get her what she wanted.  (It’s an overnight bag).

I harvested some green beans from the garden.  I had hoped to can on Saturday, but there weren’t enough ready.  We have it planned for Tuesday.  My mom and aunt, Michaela, Jake, Patsy and myself can all be here Tuesday morning.  It’s  a tradition in our family to have bean-snapping parties.  I can remember many times in my childhood with my grandmas, sisters, my children, and myself all snapping and canning like crazy all day long.  It is always more fun to do big jobs together.  I will not have enough ripe beans for an all-day party, neither do I have a family large enough to eat that many beans anymore.  So, I planted fewer beans than I used to.  We should still have lots of fun.


I also harvested and used zucchini, cilantro, green onions, lettuce, broccoli (or should I say Lovana ate it–oh wait, I got about 6 tiny flowerets–she ate the rest–I’m talking all the broccoli from 5 bushes)  That’s getting to be a family joke.  I really don’t mind.  I mean, come on, the girl’s eating veggies!  I got a few snow peas, too, from the new planting that’s just starting.  A few of the new seeds I recently planted are popping up now.  I hoed and weeded in the garden.

We have been going to the summer reading programs at the library.  So far, we’ve checked out books, gone to the movie “Sing,” watched a juggler, and received several prizes including a ticket for ice cream, a Trail Blazer game, a fair ticket, a ticket for a free book at the party at the end of the program, a bookmark, and a child’s meal at Izzy’s with purchase of an adult meal.  Both Patsy and Jake have also received tickets for their efforts and may win another prize, but also may not–there are a few raffled prizes available.


He got to “plant” a flower for his efforts in the summer reading program.  I hope your week went as well as mine did!



10 thoughts on “Saving Money and Weekly Update–July 16, 2017”

  1. I can surely sympathize with your sister! We did flooring in 7 rooms last fall and prior to that we did a kitchen refresh with new counters and sink along with repairing the ceiling from a water leak. It is astounding how much stuff has to moved. When we did the flooring we stuffed our bedroom so that we just had a path around our bed. At night I kept thinking that I felt claustrophobic and then reminding myself that I could not see all that stuff in the dark.

    My tomatoes are finally starting to look like they are going to ripen. We have had several days of rain so they are happy and I have seen bees out there doing the pollinating. I was really excited to see the bees. How wonderful to have such a great crop of green beans!

    Hubby’s long term disability has been approved through the end of October so he has more time to heal. Income goes to 50% but I have worked out a new budget and we will be fine by pulling back from savings and 401K for a bit. If he needs more time we can apply for more disability.

    Our middle son and his wife had their first baby on Saturday and he is named William after my husband which was a nice surprise! We hope to be able to travel to Ohio and see him soon. He is our sixth grandchild. He has a full head of dark hair and looks just like his Daddy did when he was a newborn.

    1. I’m so happy for you on a lot of levels! How exciting to have a new grandson, and how special that he is named for your husband.

      I’m also glad you worked out a way to survive on less income. It sure beats no income:), I always tell myself.

      I think none of quite understood the enormity of the job in front of my sister and brother-in-law. I know I sure wish I would have had more time to help them. It IS helping them to have Jake here a lot, but still…’s a lot of stuff to move.

      I wonder how late they had to stay up last night….

  2. What a nice week, and go you, for doing the grilling! I would have just cooked something else! 🙂 I know that’s silly, but our grill has a few idiosyncrasies, and I don’t even want to try to figure it out.

    1. Thanks. I was proud of myself. There is definitely a knack to it, which I have never learned because Rob is so good at it. So, I have no idea why I decided to do it this time–but I’m glad I did.

    1. Me, too, except ours was always done around a big table, where the beans were poured into a huge pile as the picker kept bringing buckets-full into the house and pouring them there. I never dreaded bean canning, even with that huge pile to snap, because it was fun! (I did complain as a child, as children do-to be completely honest) One time, when very small, I remember snapping my crayons up like beans. My mother was not amused, but I thought it was fun!

  3. What fun to stumble upon that car show! My grandsons and my hubby would love that. 😉 Remodels and flooring are such a pain to do because of all the prep work involved, but are so worth it in the end. Praying the work gets done quickly and they don’t run into any snags.

    Your party sounds like fun and I am so proud of you for keeping the cost in check and not burning anything on the BBQ. 😉 Your beautiful mother does look happy about her gift. I feel so blessed, as I’m sure you do, to still have our mothers in our lives.

    I had to laugh when your said your daughter was eating almost all the broccoli. It reminded me of yesterday when we were over at Heather’s parents house for a surprise party for her grandpa. Most of the little grandkids decided that they were going to go up and “harvest” the greenhouse and vegetable beds themselves. Luckily their grandpa got up there just in time and stopped them from harvesting all the unripe peas in addition to what they have already discovered and eaten. LOL!

    Be blessed!

    1. I finally just sent Rob to Winco for a new bunch of broccoli for my cashew chicken recipe, as the baggie I had harvested, washed and cut up got eaten, too. It really is getting to be funny! I’m glad “Grandpa” saved his peas!

  4. Oh, I haven’t thought about snapping beans in a long time. I don’t know if the Grand Girls have ever done it but i’m calling my sister and telling her we need to get all the girls together for some snappin’ fun.

    1. I’m looking forward to it. Once I get them picked, I’ll get to sit down for a while–very welcome after a LONG, awesome day at the zoo today:)

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