Thriving in My Thrifty Week–June 3, 2018



I met up with a friend and went for a walk at a nearby park, which had a beautiful rose garden.  We admired the roses, walked a long ways around the huge park, then took off across town to a coffee shop she knew about, where she bought me a sugar-free Italian soda.  I had a great time, and really enjoyed the coconut Italian soda, which I had not had before.  I thought it was a great thing to do with my first day off from teaching homeschool!


Ja’Ana had her last dance recital last night.  She does tap.  It has turned out to be her favorite kind of dance, after trying many kinds over the years.  The recital was lovely, and very tasteful.  The frugal part, you may ask?   Unless Patsy decides to take dance again, we are done paying fees for lessons, costumes, and gas to get to endless classes and rehearsals!  She has had 2 years of dance in the past, but did not want to continue.  Every one of the 6 girls had an opportunity to take dance, and most of them did it for several years.  That’s a lot of shoes, tights, bobby pins, costumes and leotards.  But, it’s bittersweet, because I’ve loved having them in dance!


They gave her a lovely bouquet of roses because she is a graduating senior.

I turned in all the schoolwork to the diploma program we are going through.  Ja’Ana’s diploma was signed, because we got done!!!  The last few weeks have been rough, to say the least, getting her to finish up, but it’s done now and she has cheered up tremendously.  We all have.  Alissa is done with this year’s work as well, but does not graduate until next year.




Alissa had a birthday party.  This is a custom that they have done for years, as her birthday is in January.  When she was younger, it made things much better.  Now, she just wanted to have party, so had a big luau.  When we dropped Ja’Ana off, I helped out a bit (very little truthfully–they were super well organized), and we ended up eating there.  Boy was it good, and we will get the same thing (leftovers) for Family Sunday Dinner–so an easy week for me!  There were lots of kids there, and they looked like they were having lots of fun.  Alissa had planned a few games, but mostly, they visited and ate, as teenagers do.

Patsy got an opportunity to work with the high school group for 3 hours, earning money towards camp.  I drove around a lot on Saturday, with 3 events, plus some grocery shopping.  I still am grateful that she could earn money.  I want to promote that work ethic, and it’s worth some gas to me.

I worked a few extra hours.  We are still figuring out the best way to serve Michaela’s needs now that she is done with her schooling.  One thing we did was have her continue her volunteering work at Meals on Wheels.  So, I went down there with her.  I would have been happy to help, but they didn’t need me, so I sat down for the time she was there, just being available in case she needed anything.

I have been shopping quite a bit more than normal.  I have so many events coming up that I need food or other things for:  Ja’Ana’s graduation party open house, a dress for her to graduate in (unsuccessful after 2 tries–I hope the 3rd time is a charm), a birthday party for Danait I am helping with later on in June (she and Ja’Ana share a birthday, but she’s turning 4 and J is turning 18), gifts for Patsy, Abbie, Danait, and Ja’Ana’s birthdays, all in the same  week, several graduates that we know and love and want to at least send a card to, picnics with the kids, and so on.  So, I’ve been scanning the store flyers and the internet and grabbing the best deals at several stores when I see something that will be useful for these upcoming events.  I have been working pretty hard at it to stretch my money as far as it can go, and I’m feeling successful.  I didn’t have to buy lettuce, as there is some in the garden now, so that’s one thing I could skip!

We did a Costco run, and I got a chicken, which we ate and I turned the bones into chicken soup.  I have been serving lots of refried beans and soup and chili from last week’s cooking spree.  Meals have not been exciting, but they have been filling.  We ate Costco food the night we were there.  I made a batch of muffins, which were scarfed down, probably because people were a wee bit tired of beans:)


I cleaned a bit more in the garage, and used more odds and ends of food I found lurking out there.  I’ve been using canned pears in more popsicles, along with what ever berries I can grab.  Some of those pears have been around a long time, and I’m delighted to find a way to get them eaten!

We did more yard work, but did not buy  bark dust for the $250 Rob was quoted.  We will explore more options, or skip it!  The garden is growing well, but that’s for another post. This one is getting too long, and I want to go to church:). I hope your week was as satisfying!



21 thoughts on “Thriving in My Thrifty Week–June 3, 2018”

  1. Becky,

    I know what you mean about all of the celebrations. When I turned the calendar to June I realized my son has three celebrations this month just for him. First he graduates from his Medical Residency program (He is an Anesthesiologist ) Next he has Father’s day he is a Dad to three littles. Finally his Birthday on the 28th of this month he will be thirty ! Wow time does go fast !

    1. Congratulations on your son’s graduation! That’s pretty awesome, and I’ll bet he’s glad he’s done, so he can spend more time with his children:)

  2. Wow, a busy week! And it looks like you’ll be having another busy week, ahead!

    The rose you pictured is lovely! Glad you had the opportunity to visit the gardens and go out for a treat, afterwards to celebrate the end of your home school teaching year!

    Congratulations to Ja’Ana in completing not only her dance program but also her school work required for the diploma! Will she continue taking tap dancing classes outside of the program she was in? My daughter did tap, too, and enjoyed it very much.

    That is a great luau you all had for Alissa! What a great idea to celebrate a January birthday in June!

    Sounds like you are doing well with shopping for all the upcoming events! You’ve a lot to prepare for! Hope you have a lovely week ahead, Becky.

    1. Thank you. I don’t know what Ja’Ana will choose to do. I’m thinking she will work more, as she is done with school. I don’t know if she will choose to take tap anymore, or will even have time for it once she enters her adult life. Lots of questions:)

  3. Congratulations to the graduate!

    Everything looks wonderful for the birthday party. It’s such an exciting time of life. I know that January is the official “new year,” but sometimes it feels as if June marks the start of a second wave of “newness”

  4. So many joyous occasions happening for your family! I know the costs do add up though. We had some extra expenses that cost us over $1000 between this and last month so gift giving is going to be a bit more sparse for awhile, at least with purchased and not homemade items. 😉

  5. Hi Becky-
    How is Ja’Ana pronounced? In my mind, it’s the same as my friend’s daughter, Jaina. Been wondering for a while. 🙂

      1. Haha, now that I see the pronunciation, I can’t believe I said it wrong! A lovely name for a lovely, lovely young woman.

  6. Oh, it feels good to be able to read your posts! It has been months since I had the opportunity and today, I will be binging on your blog. Every time I have a moment to sit down, I will read a little until I have read all of them! It might take me a few weeks.

    Life has been difficult around here. Mom returned home from visiting my sister during the winter and while home her macular degeneration, advanced rapidly. The last few months she advanced from having difficulty seeing to almost being blind. It has been rough on her and me.

    Tomorrow I will take her for the last doctor’s appointments and then begin moving her to my sister’s house in Alabama. It will be another difficult week. Dustin is still at home awaiting his security background approval. Boy, are they checking him out! They still have not told him exactly what he will be doing.

    So, I am back to reading and hopefully soon life will settle down a bit. I have missed hearing about your family and especially your garden.

    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry

    1. I’m very sorry to hear that your mother’s eyesight is so much worse. I know she had been struggling, but it sounds like it was rapid, and got bad so quickly. We have a friend who fell from a roof a couple of years back, and is legally blind now, although he can still see some things. The association for the blind has helped him a lot. I wonder if there is something like that there that could help your mother so she can feel as independent as she can be. I know it’s hard regardless. I’m glad she has you and your sister.

      As for Dustin, I’m sure they will get through all that red tape before long, and he will be off to his next adventure. When he comes out dressed like the Men in Black, you will know he’s ready:)

      I have enjoyed your pictures of flowers. My garden is off to a good start now, although the slicing cucumbers did not come up, so I replanted them last night. The corn did come up, and the crows stole most of it! I live in town now, for Pete’s sake! Those problems should have gone away, but for now, I’m going to replant a few more kernels in my 3′ x 3′ patch, and see what happens. I may cover it with Remay Row Covering, as I have a chunk from years past. I’m not looking for a large crop, just a few cobs to eat fresh, and maybe take to family Sunday dinner. Always a challenge, those gardens!

    1. Thanks for your faith in me! I still have a ways to go, but the items are being checked off daily. We did get a dress for her to wear tonight. It’s more formal than I would have chosen, but so lovely, and it’s what she wanted. So, we got it, and I know it will look lovely peeking out from under the graduation gown. Hopefully, she will get to take the gown off at some point, cause she looks really grown-up and lovely in the dress. At least I can get pictures before-hand:)

  7. From the other post — Great photos from the graduation! And love her dress, too.

    Wanted to ask you how you keep your pantry organized? Do you have labels on the shelves or some kind of ‘directory’ for it? Or is it all in your memory? I was reading your comment about filling the holes in your pantry on Brandy’s blog and wanted to ask you. I find keeping everything organized crazy hard and need some ideas. My pantry is squirreled away throughout my apartment so I don’t have a set of shelves all in one place that I can see all at once.


    1. SJ,
      I do have things in several places as well. The bulk of the dry goods are on and below (in tin cans, like popcorn used to come in at Christmas) a large shelf unit in the garage. The home-canned jars are in the shop, except for a jar of each thing so I can grab it easily. The main freezers are in the shop, and there is one over the fridge in the kitchen.

      I keep no baking supplies/food cans/jars, etc. in the kitchen. There is only room for tea, spices, etc.

      I have another shelf/cupboard area for things like t.p., and ziplocks and drinks are there, or on the floor of the garage.

      I try to put things that are like each other together. So, I group the gluten-free pasta together, and the wheat pasta elsewhere. All fruits in cans, like pineapple and mandarin oranges are on a shelf. All oil is on a shelf. All I put my gf mixes in a bin, which I shove under the bottom shelf, along with those tin cans. They hold bags of things like sugar, powdered sugar, dry beans, bulk popcorn, brown sugar, etc. I often have 25 lbs or more of those items on hand at any given time, then less and less until I need to buy more. I have glass gallon jars for bulk items I have purchased, such as 25 lbs of pinto beans or 10 lbs of gf spaghetti noodles. They are on a shelf, and are easy to see that way. I also have some empty ice cream buckets with other beans in them, and they are not so easy to keep track of because I can’t see through them.

      My freezers are the hardest to keep track of. Things get lost in them easily. I try to keep things together in there as well, but it’s too easy to cram a little thing in a blank spot, and ….it’s lost:)

  8. Thanks so much for the reply. I too think I lose track of the things because they are out of sight. And my chest freezer is always a challenge–things always get lost in there as well.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *