Thriving In My Thrifty Week–January 25, 2021

This week was unusually busy during the first half, and unusually quiet the second half. Rob scurried around getting wood hauled, things picked up and put away, and so forth, and then had surgery on Friday. He had one surgery for carpal tunnel and nerve surgery on his elbow, both at the same time. It went well, and we spent a quiet weekend icing and elevating his arm. I planned nothing else for the weekend, since he does an awful lot of house chores around here, and I knew I needed to do them all for a few days.

He took our daughter Lovana shopping on Wednesday, as she doesn’t drive and finds it very handy when she can talk her dad into taking her to various stores. While he was out, he picked up some groceries for us. I didn’t need many, but I forgot to ask for corn tortillas. I didn’t want to shop again, since I had enough to do, so I remembered a comment from Terri W. a while back, who suggested I make my own. I told her I couldn’t because I don’t keep flour in the house, but then thought, “why not try corn ones?” I’ve watched my friend make them before, in a tortilla press, which I don’t have, so I squished them between plastic wrap and two plates. Then, I fried them in a pan. They aren’t as thin as the store ones, but they tasted wonderful!

We just keep eating and eating our home-preserved food. We’ve especially been enjoying pickles and applesauce this week. Pears, peaches, giardinera, jams and cauliflower have been eaten as well, plus more.

Jake enjoyed making a Kiwi Crate kit as part of the homeschooling materials his mom sent over last week on the one day I do school with him. It was a basketball catapult. Fun!

We finished reading about the Wright Brothers and a book called “Thimble Summer.” He liked them, but boy did I have some talking to do when he realized the little girl in “Thimble Summer” was hitchhiking! I explained it was a long, long, long time ago and they did that kind of thing then, but NEVER, EVER now, and on and on and on. Did you every get caught out trying to explain a tricky part of a book to a very literal, special needs child? It’s not for the faint of heart, I’ll have to say:). But, I do enjoy reading to him, and he loves hearing it, so we read quite a bit last week. Although we do formal school only one day per week, I read aloud every time he is with me, and before bed when he spends the night.

We get a lot of frugal fun from books. I read to Patsy and Rob this morning for about an hour. He’s a bit bored today, and loves hearing the story we are reading. (Still on “The War That Saved My Life”–it’s a great book!) This morning, his bandage started slipping down and his stitches were showing, so I drove him to the doctor and they re-dressed his arm. After all, a guy can’t go around with his stitches showing:) They said it looks wonderful! After surgery, they said the nerve surgery on the elbow was “more than they thought it would be” and it has hurt there especially, but he is handling it just fine with ibuprophin, so that is a relief.

Rob and Patsy watched lots of westerns on t.v., while he was icing and elevating that arm. I was happy to wash dishes and cook, to the sound of gunshots ringing out and the drawl of John Wayne, while being very thankful I had a sink, fridge and stove to use, rather than a wagon, bucket of water and campfire to cook with, lots of food, and no bullets to dodge while I did my chores:). All joking aside, I take those things for granted, and around the world, so many women have to contend with all that and more, just to put a meal on the table for her family. I really did take a moment to be thankful for all that I do have.

18 thoughts on “Thriving In My Thrifty Week–January 25, 2021”

  1. Becky, I always look forward to reading your posts each week. I love the peek into your frugal life! I’m praying for a quick recovery for Rob. Have a wonderful week.

  2. Home preserved food is the best! Your last paragraph really resonated with me. I’m reading A Long Walk to Water, which is a story that talks about the amount of hours needed daily to procure water, not necessarily clean, just to survive, as well as the wars going on around them. There are so many blessings that it is easy to take for granted every day.

  3. Love your posts! So many positive and grateful messages. It’s contagious! What recipe did you use for the tortillas? I have made them with flour but not yet with corn. They look great! And all of your canning looks awesome!

    1. I’m glad you are encouraged!
      I used a recipe on the back of a bag of Maseca instant masa flour I got a while back at Grocery Outlet. There was one recipe I found, bought it for that recipe since it was super inexpensive, and after that, there it sat. So, I was delighted to find a recipe on the back I could use for a different purpose. I used 2 cups of the masa flour, 1-1/2 cups water, and I added a small amount of salt. It said work it with your hands, so I did, then added a little more water since it wouldn’t roll into soft balls, but instead was crumbly. I’m sure people who actually know how to do it know much more than I do, but I put plastic wrap on one plate, put the little ball on it, then more plastic wrap on top, then a slightly smaller plate, then squished like crazy! I peeled the wrap off and plopped it into a non-stick skillet that was on medium-high heat with a little oil in there and fried on both sides. They weren’t as thin or even as store bought, but they tasted really good.

  4. Piece by piece Rob is being rebuilt. Hope he is feeling better. Don’t over do it doing all of his chores. You need rest too. All of you canning looks delicious. I am glad you are able to enjoy it.

    1. That man is already up and driving, doing chores one-handed, and very close to his regular self. Other than the discomfort caused by a row of stitches and surgery, of course. But those come out Monday, so, yes….little by little he’s being rebuilt. I’ve been kidding him that he will be the bionic man before long.

  5. I am grateful our husbands can get surgery to repair health problems so they don’t suffer so much. Back in the olden days, everybody just died.

    And hot water out of the faucet! My favorite luxury is hot water every time you turn on the faucet.


  6. It is a very cold day here in NW PA. The high is 18 degrees. Thank goodness for nice warm clothing. I came home from my bus run so cold. I thanked God for having a warm home to come to. Banana bread is in the oven to use up bananas that were very ripe. For one batch I used some that I had frozen.
    I cleaned out the refrigerator and small freezer. I had some corn that was a few years old and freezer burnt and apples that were very shriveled so I gave them to my grand daughters’ chickens and turkey for a winter treat. I purchased a vacuum packer for quarts and gallons. I am hoping this will cut down on food waste. I also have been using up what is in frig and freezer more faithfully so waste is held to a very minimal! I so enjoy your posts. Have a wonderful weekend!!!

    1. Brrrr, brrrr, brrrrr!!! I love my warm home, too. We got a little snow on Tuesday afternoon and there was enough for Patsy and Jake to play in yesterday afternoon. That’s rare here, so was fun. It’s gone now except for a lone snowman melting in yards here and there.

      We have a vacuum sealer, too. We don’t use it all the time, but one thing we use it for is when we plan on fishing for more trout than we think we can eat. We take it camping with us and vacuum seal them right there and freeze them in the camper freezer.

      1. A tip I learned a few years ago is to add filtered water to a freezer bag and then the fish… will taste like fresh caught when you defrost. The Food saver saves me money every single day! I cook all my ground beef with peppers, onions, and celery , drain and package in one pound packages ….same with beef tips! Sear and cook in a slow cooker for a few hours with onion soup mix ….delicious. This saves so much time on busy nights when you just need to defrost heat and eat !

        1. My mom used to freeze her trout (that we caught) in a milk carton full of water, then defrost. I think it’s along the same lines as you do. I haven’t caught any trout for quite a while–here’s hoping I have some to freeze this summer. Here’s hoping even more that Rob will get to do some Steelhead or Salmon fishing one of these days, and be successful! It’s been years since he caught one of those:). Then, I will be getting my trusty vacuum packer out, as well. I agree, it keeps things fresher.

  7. Glad to hear that Rob is recovering well from his surgeries and already doing things! Sounds like you’ve had a busy week, but, then, you are busy most weeks, aren’t you? I honestly don’t know how you manage to do everything that you do!

    Yes, we do take so many things for granted, don’t we? Last week, I had both my heater (a gas wall unit) and the hot water heater go off! I didn’t have to wait a long time without either heat or hot water, but, I was so happy when both appliances were fixed!

    1. Brrr….I wouldn’t want to go without heat this time of year, even though I know you live in a warmer place! I’m glad it got fixed.

      Yes, I’m busy. I like it that way. In fact, I’ve been reading so much lately and playing so much Candy Crush I told Rob I was getting a wee bit bored and needed a few projects. Thankfully, it wasn’t hard to think a few up:). In fact, we unexpectedly ended up with the cousins this weekend, so boredom went right out the window. Serves me right for saying that!

  8. Becky,
    I’m late in reading your blog, but wanted to let you know I’m so glad you made corn tortillas! I have always just made flour ones, and now I’m going to try corn also! I also wonder about making the flour kind with a gluten-free flour.
    I hope Rob is recovering well now from his surgeries!

    1. He is recovering. His stitches were taken out Monday and now he has this huge scar that looks kind of ugly on his elbow/arm. That one is from the nerve surgery. The carpal tunnel one is much smaller, down on his hand. He still can’t wash dishes…or push or pull or lift a lot, but he’s been able to do several small repairs in the camper–things that have been put off because they weren’t major, but so nice he is able to get them fixed!

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