Category Archives: Homeschooling

Thriving In My Thrifty Week-Mar.13, 2022

It’s been a week of soup, again! Besides keeping my grocery budget down, it’s just plain good food for this time of year. After some very cold, sunny days, we are in a period of rain, rain, rain!

We finished the beef-vegetable soup, and I made both chicken with rice noodles and potato soup. I may have actually made a little too much soup:). We had tacos a few times, made with home-made, frozen re-fried beans and hamburger. We made a very small pork roast with salsa verde on it. Rob’s mom gave us 4 or 5 avocados when he stopped in to visit her, so we had those several times as they ripened. I also made a ground turkey stroganoff with noodles, which was enjoyed several times. I don’t eat a lot of noodles, but they sure go down well when the baby comes over and I enjoy a few with him when I make them. I shopped a week and a half ago, and it’s working out fine–we are into the second week and have plenty of choices left. Of course, I used, and will use, lots of frozen and canned food from my pantry.

I skipped the Azure Standard order this month, as I had plenty, but instead sent Rob down to Costco for a few bulk items. The girls also went to Costco and gave me some bits and pieces of veggies that came in such large quantities they didn’t feel they would eat them all. Nice! I had Rob grab a chicken, as I often do, and we ate and froze chicken, boiled the bones and made broth, and froze most of it for another soup-making session later on. $5 for an already cooked chicken is such a bargain.

I was delighted to get outside a couple of times. We pulled a few weeds, planted a couple clumps of red tulips someone left for free beside the road, and got the tiny tiller out and roughed up the big flowerbed out front. After the amount of rain we just received, I know that’s the last flowerbed work I will be able to do for a while, until it dries out again. The lawn was mowed as well, so things look better around here.

Rob used some money he was given for his birthday to pick up some jumbo bags of dahlias at Costco. We also have quite a few bulbs he dug up last fall, both from some we had planted in the corner of the garden and some a friend gave us last summer. We have a couple of areas we plan to fill with dahlias. It’s too early to plant them yet. The hope is that once they are established, and mulched, they will be less work than the gazillions of zinnias I planted last summer! I wasn’t able to hand-weed them enough, so they got pretty weedy by the end of the summer. Gorgeous, but a bit of a mess.

It was a week of visitors. I had Jake (my nephew) all week. For you new readers, we work with him and his sister for our job, and spend some auntie and uncle time, as well. His mom was working 12 hour days, multiple days. His dad was working a lot, as well. So he just spent the days and nights all week. His sister came one day, only, as she is enrolled in a program most days. We had the grand-babies a few days. By Friday, I was delighted to hear that my mom was coming over. She played games, held Mac, and helped eat up some of that never-ending soup while we visited. It was good to break up the fun with a new person. This is her trying to play Clue with Patsy and Jake while keeping Malcolm busy with lots of odds and ends in a basket–no wonder I can multi-task well:). I come by it naturally!

Rob took Jake to the library one day, Michaela to Bottle Drop to recycle her family’s cans and bottles, Jake out for errands and donuts and Michaela to Costco for a hot dog and her Horses of Hope lesson. I stayed home with Patsy and did school, school, school, babysat and did school with Jake. I also read aloud to him for hours, as he loves that. Right now, we are reading Trixie Belden, book 1, yet again. He loves that book. It’s a good thing that I enjoy it, too, as this has to be our 3rd or 4th time through.

You can imagine that I loved having the company I got, and I was ready for a little visiting! All those errands and activities kept the kids busy, and that helps me keep sane.

I am happy to report that Patsy is almost finished with school. Tomorrow should do it, except for a couple of very small things. Now she will be able to have a few days to do a few things she needs and wants to do to finish preparing for going off to camp to work a week from Tuesday. It’s been 7 days a week, often many hours per day, of contact school for a few weeks, ever since we found out they wanted her early to help with outdoor schools, so it will be SO good to be done with that huge project!

My niece, Alissa, came over one day just to hang out. If you are a new reader, this is the niece that I homeschooled for several years, so I miss her a lot now that she’s grown up and working. Another evening, another couple of nieces dropped by and of course, I loved seeing them, as well. I’ve just had a great “auntie” week.

We took the babies and Jake to the park. We take as many walks as we can, whenever the weather allows us to. Even when it’s raining, we take umbrellas and go. It’s only when it’s very cold or the rain is driving sideways that we stay in with the kids the whole time.

It was a great, but super busy week. My life goes that way–I’m busier in spurts, and I’ll admit I got somewhat tired this week. It turned out to be a lot, but filled with such precious people and memories. This next week will be lighter. That’s good because I have one daughter I’d like to spoil a bit before she takes off to camp…..

Thriving In My Thrifty Week–February 8, 2022

In the past couple of weeks, we have been very busy with the TOPS Radishes science unit. In my little house, many, many surfaces have been, and still are, covered with planters of radishes, little jars with various experiments, and big meat trays full of experiments. (WAY, WAY more than in this picture!). Both Jake and Patsy are doing the experiments, so we have double of everything.

Frankly, it’s been keeping everyone busy for hours and the kids, especially Jake, seem to be really enjoying the whole process. We have this week and next week and then we will put it all away and move on to something else. I won’t be sad to be able to move around without worrying about bumping into, knocking over, or otherwise damaging the experiments every time I move, but will be sad that the fun part is over. No worries….there’s another book–“Corn and Beans” we will do soon.

Patsy has been accepted to work at a camp this summer. We are really excited for her. They asked her if she could finish her schoolwork early, and come work at the Outdoor School sessions they have this spring. I thought that was for one extra week, but I was wrong! It’s all spring!!! We have been working extra hard, doing double school, so she can go at the end of March. We also need to gather some things for her.

We spent an afternoon sewing. She made the pink pajama bottoms and I made the blue ones. They were from fabric I’ve had for years, bought on super sale, and it felt nice to use it for such an exciting purpose. I went to JoAnn’s to get some inexpensive t-shirts for the tops. They were 3 for $9.99. We want to do one more pair of p.j. pants, and that should do her for sleepwear.

She’s been sorting her shorts and jeans, and other clothing to see if we need to purchase more of anything. Between the extra school and gathering things, we are hustling around here. Frankly, at a camp, she doesn’t need super nice things. They tend to get ruined at camp anyway. So, my aunt gave us some old towels, with the intention of using them for drying the dog after baths, etc., but we put some that didn’t look all that bad in Patsy’s box to take. If they get lost or ruined, it’s o.k. I will have Rob go to the Union Gospel Mission store and see if there are more jeans or shorts that will work. We will probably need some kind of hiking or rain boots for her–we’ll look around. They will give her a couple of camp t-shirts to wear part of the time. There’s a washer and dryer there.

She will return home on weekends, so we can get more things if needed at any time.

We’ve been using lot of fruit and veggies we preserved last summer and meat from the freezer. Today, Patsy is making her peanut chicken recipe that uses frozen broccoli.

Rob cooked a turkey I bought for very little money last Thanksgiving on the BBQ, which makes it easy for me. We boiled the bones and I froze several cartons of broth and turkey bits, along with eating it in meals. I use old cottage cheese cartons and other containers I save for this purpose. I’ve also been washing more Ziplocks than ever because not only does it save money, but the last 2 times Rob went to Costco with Michaela to get some, they didn’t have any sandwich size, so who knows if they will have what I want next time or not.

I loaded up on groceries last Friday, with the intention of not shopping this week at all, unless there’s a critical, missing ingredient I forgot. It happens. I know this week is busier than normal, so I don’t want to use Friday morning for shopping. If I did forget something, my long-suffering hubby will get to fetch it, bless his heart. I used lots of coupons, especially the save $10 on $50 at Safeway. I also picked up a Azure Standard order, which consisted of bulk items such as dry beans, spices, etc. So I can go 2 weeks. Likely 2 months. Rob says 2 years:)……Ha-ha! Still need dairy and produce, so that’s out.

I didn’t babysit much this past week. I didn’t cook for others much. Instead, I took a nap one day, read books from the library and on my iPad, watched Olympic figure skating and skiing, and worked on some quilting projects in-between work, schooling, and house work. I’ve been trying to sort out and clean one basket, drawer, or bin every few days. I needed a “down” week because I know this week to come is busier. So, bring it on! I feel ready:)

Thriving In My thrifty Week–September 28, 2021

This week, we celebrated the arrival of fall by doing some extra activities with the kids. On the first day of fall, we decorated the extra fall-shaped sugar cookies I had frozen before we went to the beach. Then, we made fall cards.

Rob organized the project. It involved collecting fall leaves on our walk, then spattering them with watercolors so that when the leaf was removed, the shape of the leaf was left on the card.

Another day, we made some cinnamon puffs. They are like little fritters. The kids enjoyed the project and they were soon eaten, especially when the big girls and babies dropped by later in that afternoon and helped eat them.

We had 2 birthday parties. One was for sweet Allison and one was for my aunt. I made hamburgers, coleslaw, and beans along with the big chocolate cake and we had some ice cream for Allison’s party. We played games and had fun with our son, Anthony and his girl, Allison. For my aunt’s party, my sister did the hosting. I took a pan of enchiladas–easy! Both gatherings were kept extremely small, but it was nice to get together.

A friend gave us some dahlia starts in pots earlier in the summer. A few of them recently bloomed. I’m trying to get an idea of what they look like and how tall they are before I plant them in the flowerbeds. This one is especially pretty.

I canned the rest of the whole tomatoes I needed and 3 more pints of diced tomatoes. I also made 7 pints of enchilada sauce, using all the tiny tomatoes, yellow ones and cherry tomatoes I could gather. There are just too many for us to eat fresh. They are winding down, though, so I’m glad I pretty much have what I need. When Rob’s cousin graciously offered us more tomatoes, I was able to say “no,” gratefully and thankfully for the offer, of course, but still “no.” Truthfully, many of my jars are filled now. The shelves have only a few small spaces left. I have plans for those spots and will fill them, but there comes a time where I need to move on to other things that need to be done and not can just to can, not fill jars just because I have a few empty ones left…. Other than things that are ready yet, like cauliflower, I’ve preserved what I need and a little more for a carry-over.

One of those things that desperately needs done is cleaning. My house is a disaster. It makes sense. I’ve spent up to 14 hours some days growing or picking produce and dealing with it. So I started with the garage, which became a handy place to drop boxes, buckets, food items, toys, crafts and garage sale items over the past few months. I’ve put in about 2-1/2 hours so far, over 2 days, and you can hardly tell at all. I plan to clean a little, in short increments, several times a week until it is done. Once things are sorted through and organized, I will be able to tell if I have enough for a garage sale, or just want to donate the excess. I go through my food storage pantry shelves a couple of times a year out there, so I should make faster progress when I get to that section as it shouldn’t be too messy.

I cleaned out the freezer over the fridge in the kitchen. I found lots of food I had frozen for future meals so we are eating a lot of that this week. I put empty ice cream buckets I’d saved in there, one for baggies of frozen fruits and one for frozen vegetables. I’m hoping I have stopped the avalanche each time the freezer is opened. So far, so good!

I made vegetable soup, clam chowder, enchiladas, zucchini noodle lasagna, and thawed several pre-cooked items I’d cooked in the past.

We were able to get 24 cans of Progresso clam chowder on the 99c/can sale this week. All of my regularly budgeted grocery money this week has gone on stocking the pantry–things like this soup, 25 pounds of 1 to 1 flour, etc. and a little dairy and produce. Since we ate the camper freezer food, and now the house freezer food, I really don’t need much so this is a perfect time to load up on pantry items.

Thriving In My thrifty Week–August 31, 2020

We just returned from a wonderful week camping at Ft. Stevens State Park. Due to Rob’s surgery and Covid, this was the first time we were able to take the camper out for a whole year! We were so glad we got to keep these reservations we made 9 months ago, and that nothing happened to cancel them.

We made up for lost time and did everything we could!

We also took along many activities for both Jake and Patsy and did an outdoor school/camp experience for them, with a focus on Lewis and Clark, as Ft. Stevens is very near to where they ended up at the Pacific.

We crabbed off the bridge in Seaside and were very surprised to get 5 keepers. We made a conscious decision to go at a time that was not perfect, so the kids would have a good experience, and …..WOW!

We went fishing at nearby Coffenbury Lake a couple of times. The fish Rob has was not a keeper, but he did get one that was. Jake loves fishing now and had fun pulling in a few little ones, which we put back.

Jake played Legos for hours. We have some that we keep in the camper and never bring into the house, so they seem like new toys to him. The kids did glow sticks every night, as usual. They played “hot and cold” with Uncle, as usual. (He hides little prizes around and they find them–). They dug for buried treasure, as usual. (Rob buried gold chocolate coins this time and made them find them outside the camper.). I read outloud for hours, as usual–this time it was about the journey of Lewis and Clark. Can you tell this is a boy that likes his routine? ūüôā

Something new this time was the bike riding. One day Jake’s big sister, Caitlyn, came over and helped him “ride” on a very long bike ride. I guess she had to push about half the time, but it was fun.

Mostly, he and Patsy rode around and around the loop where we were camped, and both had a blast! My aunt had a bike she had not been riding, and gave it to Patsy. Patsy loves it so much. Rob taught her how to put on new tires and inner tubes, and once they fixed up, it worked very, very well for her. She rode it for miles, I think, because she was on it almost every day.

They dug in the sand one day. Rob did some fishing while they dug, and I stayed back and cleaned up the horrendously messy camper, a couple of cupboards and baked the cookies. Although I was offered help to bake the cookies, by that point, I had had enough help for a little bit, so Rob took them away for a little while, while I got the camper cleaned up. We never intended to leave the camper sit for an entire year, so of course, I found a few crackers that had seen better days. The kids happily fed them to the seagulls one day. Another day, we drove across the bridge to Washington State, and read road markers about Lewis and Clark’s journey. We also spent quite a bit of time playing Lewis and Clark–pretending to explore with a compass that was used more for fun than for correct direction, but…..

We went for several hikes down the trails, in fact, did a hike most days.

I took so many fun activities that we did not get them all done. They did camp fire cooking, decorated fall cookies, craft projects, plus all the outdoor fun. I still have some ideas left for next time, which is how I like it!

My sister came and picked the garden several times while I was gone, so it is in good shape.

We stayed frugal by using the foster/adoptive park pass we have, so we camped for the week for the $8 registration fee, only. We ate all meals as picnics or at the campsite, except one drive-thru at McDonald’s for a lunch the day we drove around. We always save change in a can for that purpose, and still have plenty left for another time, as Rob and I didn’t want a lot from there….just sayin’:). We’d prefer a little seafood or chowder, but since it’s Covid, we chose not to go to a restaurant so McD’s it was. The kids were happy, and we found a nice spot to sit and look out at the water while we ate, so we were happy, too. We visited a grocery store one time for a few items, but most food was brought from home, using our regular grocery budget and garden produce. It was a great week, and I’m so glad we got to go!

Thriving In My thrifty Week–August 2, 2020

Way before Rob’s surgery, my sister booked a cabin at Detroit Lake and invited us to come with their family for a few days. She wanted him to have something to look forward to post-surgery. As we discussed the upcoming trip, we talked about how he would probably need help up the few stairs, a ground level room so he could lie down when needed, and maybe could or maybe could not walk the 50 feet to the lake or go out on a boat one day. What a different, and wonderful, scenario it was!

Instead of sitting in the cabin, he went down to the lake several times. While down there, he fished, helped the kids fish and swam more than once. He had no trouble on the stairs or anywhere else, but made sure to use his trekker poles and follow his hip surgery precautions at all times. One morning, he and I walked all over the tiny lake town for exercise. It was nice to have a different change of scenery.

He took some of the kids rock collecting and creek walking.

On the day my sister rented a pontoon boat, we all fished for the morning, and swam during the afternoon. We took a picnic with us to enjoy at lunch time. Michaela got a fishing license before she went on the trip, with Rob’s help. Then, of course, she wanted to fish. He helped her hook this one, and she landed it. She was SO excited.

I caught a fish, too! It was the biggest trout I’ve caught in years, well over 12 inches, and we ate it for dinner that night, along with the one Rob helped Michaela catch.

Jake’s parents have chosen to continue homeschooling next fall, and are continuing his education during the summer. So, 2 of the days we were there, he did schoolwork. His mom organized it all, and his dad and mom both worked with him at times. Uncle helped him with science projects twice. I read two entire short chapter books to him. One was school, one was for fun. He would lay in wait for me to come out to where ever he was and get me to read to him,–it was so cute and fun. He commandeered everyone he could to play air hockey and foosball in the basement game room the cabin had, and although he beat me at air hockey, I did win the foosball game:). He talked every single one of us into Yahtzee at one time or another, and even used my phone to text Grandma for her Yahtzee-winning secrets one time, and then won the game!

We took all of our food, and cooked every meal at the cabin. We had a blast, and got some rest. Which was good because……

When we got home…..yikes! I had picked the garden produce before we went and processed everything or packed it for the trip. I needed to work for 12-16 hours a couple of days to get it taken care of before we left, but nothing was neglected or forgotten, except 3 pickling cucumbers that grew too big to use while we were gone, and about 10 beans that went over the hill. I can so totally live with that!

Since I’ve been home, I’ve canned beet pickles, dill pickles, blueberry pie filling and green beans. I’ve frozen the last of the peaches, some strawberries and blueberries.

Yesterday afternoon, we had a bean-snapping/canning party at my sister’s house. My other sister is growing tons of beans and is sharing. So after virtual church, Rob and I went over to Gail’s and joined their family and my aunt, who were all snapping like crazy. We got 28 quarts done! We took our canner, used their canner, and one that Rob’s friend gave us just last week. They never use it anymore, so we gratefully accepted. Rob stood by the canners, keeping time and keeping them all at correct pressure–that was his exclusive job, and the rest of us snapped and filled jars. When I left, they were all sealed, except one, and I’m sure it did. It sure speeds things up with multiple canners and lots of help!

I’ve been working on my garden in the evenings and mornings. I’m removing old bushes, harvesting produce, and weeding. I’m getting an area ready because I plan to plant a fall garden.

We ordered some more seeds from Territorial Seed Company for fall planting. They were out of a lot of things in their on-line winter gardening catalog, but we were able to get enough. We just wanted a few things like spinach, cabbage, etc. If they didn’t have the variety I wanted, I just chose another one, figuring they all must have some merit or they wouldn’t have made it into the seed catalog in the first place! Maybe I’ll find a new favorite. We have eaten and shared so many of our vegetables this summer–much more than we usually do, so I’m excited to get more going.

Rob took this picture of the clouds. I really like it, so thought I’d end the blog post with it, just because:)

Thriving In My thrifty Week–May 3, 2020

This past week was a nice one. We took several nice walks this past week. Some of the days were very sunny and we enjoyed getting out. We also received some much-needed rain.

Patsy loves taking pictures of as many flowers as she can. These are Camas flowers. They were growing in a wild area in the little park we walked to with Jake the day we had him.

This woodpecker keeps coming around the neighborhood. He loves to rat-a-tat-tat on this sign, and on a metal plate up on a telephone pole near our yard. We were lucky enough to sneak up on him while we were on one of our walks. Jake loves birds, so it was a real treat for him.

Rob’s cousin shared some food with us. She belongs to a gleaner’s group and gets food regularly and had more than she needed. She kindly set aside some items that were gluten-free because she knew I eat that way. She also saved a large box of Keurig K-cups for Rob because she doesn’t care for coffee and he loves it.

The other thing she gave Rob was a fully-cooked frozen turkey. I’ve never had one like that before. I thawed it out, removed all the meat from the bones and boiled them. Rob and I worked together and canned 7 quarts of turkey broth. We ate a lot of the turkey all week long, shared quite a bit, and I will make a turkey-noodle casserole to share with the rest of it tomorrow. I didn’t want to re-freeze the meat, since it had been frozen once already.

I did homeschool with Jake two mornings this past week. One thing we did was made rice casserole with some of the turkey. He ate a little bit, but I was informed that I don’t make it right. His mama makes it right. I was informed that she cooks it for 2 hours. Yes, Aunt Becky, 2 HOURS! And, I put too many carrots in it. But, he ate some anyway, so It was a triumph. (I can’t tell you how many times he’s told his mama she doesn’t make soup the way Aunt Becky does–it was her turn to be the best at something, so I teased her about it!). Any time we can get that boy to eat anything even resembling healthy food, it’s a win.

Patsy and I got a good amount of schoolwork done, as well. She’s only got 1 week of curriculum left other than the new Biology we just started and some math. I went ahead and sorted through old bins of school books and curriculum and was able to figure out what she needed for next year’s work. I owned many of the books already, but there were a few I needed to get. We were able to order most of them used, and went ahead and ordered the rest. It was very economical since we had so much from previous years. Our plan was to be done with school now for the year so we could have time for field trips and extra garden work. It’s why we started in August, but we are going to do a few weeks worth of next year’s school since we are still on lock down here in Oregon. Might as well!

The kids are getting a little stir-crazy! This is Jake, wearing one of the zippered pouches Patsy keeps making on his head, being a “French fry man.” He was playing he was working at In and Out Burger.

Patsy made another owl. This one will be put in a gift bag for a little friend and dropped on her doorstep. It’s her birthday tomorrow.

And, of course….the garden….the place I spent hours and hours this week. It’s my happy place right now. I’m at home so much right now that I’m finding more time to work out there than ever before.

Keeping Kids Busy At Home–Homeschool And Fun–April 2, 2020

Jake’s mama had to work from her home a little bit this week, and since she was seeing patients over the computer, she needed privacy, for obvious reasons. So we moved school with Jake to our house for a couple of days.

My aunt found a way to make elephants with milk jugs and sent the instructions to Rob. Rob did the cutting, the kids painted. I dug the sequins out of a bin–they are left from a project years ago.

We continued our unit study of Africa. We are reading a biography of Mary Slessor, a missionary to Africa in the 1800’s. We are working our way through a book of the African savanna, 1 page a day, and doing further exploration on the animals pictured on each page. Jake is slowly filling in rivers and places on a map of Africa. I am reading “Beat The Story Drum, Put-Pum”–African folk tales retold. We also finished the one assignment they had sent home from school with him when it closed.

Gotta do something with all those t.p. rolls!

I’ve been using lots of u-tube videos to show Jake various birds–his favorite so far is the secretary bird.

Rob’s been coming up with lots of science experiments, using household items we have.

Patsy has been a good support, making crafts with Jake, while keeping up her usual studies. We’ve also forged our way into the new Biology program I ordered.

A friend sent over some pots for the kids to paint. They started in right away!

And, today, I commandeered them into a walk. The dog needed to get out, and it didn’t hurt the kids, either.

Its been fun to do some of the crafty school activities:)

Thriving In My thrifty week–End Of the Oregon Trail Museum–Nov. 11, 2019

Today, we visited the End of the Oregon Trail Museum/Interpretive Center in Oregon City, Oregon. As the name suggests, it is where the Oregon Trail ended approximately 175 years ago. My sister set up a field trip there for both a group of homeschooled kids and kids who attend public school. There were 13 of them, including Michaela. It was planned for Veteran’s Day, since it is a school holiday for the public schools.

The kids we took had a blast!

They started having fun in the parking lot, and it continued. It was a gorgeous day.

We had a nice presentation by our guide, Bethany. We had pre-chosen the “Choose Your Own Adventure” presentation, so she let the kids decide what they would do under certain circumstances they might encounter if they were actually traveling the trail way back in the 1800’s. They loved her little voting devices that allowed them to push the button of their choice and then electronically transferred the information to the screen. After the informative presentation, they were allowed to explore that area for a while.

They moved on to a “Pack your wagon” activity.

The 3 big girls, with help from Alissa, really tried hard to figure out the best use of their 2000 pound wagon-loading limit. The littler boys just decided they didn’t need such things as clothes, just lots and lots of guns:).

The guide moved us on to butter making, where all the kids got to shake the cream until it turned into the desired butter, then they got to taste it.

Candle dipping was a real hit, as well.

Thankfully, there were plenty of grown-up hands to help the little ones. (Hard to believe Alissa counts as a grown-up now, but she DOES!).

The last activity was one in which they laid out ropes to “survey” their land on the big lawn outside. After each team “claimed” their property, often with lots of yells for others to “get off my land!” we were done with the official field trip. Rob had helped me pack a huge lunch for all 18 of us, and we relaxed in the picnic area while we all ate it. He didn’t go this time, which was a good choice since there was a lot of walking.

The kids ran and played on the big lawn after lunch. It was a great day for everyone. They had a blast while learning so much. One of the little boys confided in me how much he loved days where he didn’t have to have school–like this one!

We did do some money-saving activities during the week.

I cooked our meals, using the sale items from the grocery ads, coupled with items from my freezers/cupboards, etc. I did nothing earth-shattering, just made good, plain food. I sent Rob to some stores, and I went to others, and bought the best deals from each place. I hadn’t shopped much for a few weeks, and it caught up with me this week. I’m stocked up now for a while.

I wanted to make a small project and found everything I needed in my stash of fabric. We were also able to find everything my daughter needed for her project, except the stuffing, which my husband bought at the thrift store.

We used our membership at the Croc Center. Since the YMCA closed down for a re-build, we were transferred over there. We haven’t used it much, as it is a bit out of our way, but we are trying to use it more. Rob takes Michaela there at least once a week to swim and we join her when we can. I’ve taken a couple of exercise classes there, as they are all included in our membership. We are still on scholarship from the Y, which I thought was very nice of them all. We do pay each month, but it’s a reduced amount.

Thriving In My thrifty Week–June 9, 2019

Here is our newly graduated Alissa, with her proud parents!

…..and the aunties!

…..and then there’s the “twins, separated at birth,” as they used to call themselves. It was quite an evening.

All I can say about this week is, “WOW!” All week, we seemed we were scrambling from one activity to another. But, in the end, we got everything done, and stayed somewhat frugal:).

Of course, Alissa’s graduation was a huge part of the week, but we did some other things as well.

Rob, Patsy and I went to the dentist. Because our dentist’s son is starting to slowly take over the practice, we had a new dentist. Let’s just say our teeth were thoroughly cleaned. He’s very good, but still somewhat new at it all. We ended up using a gift card I’ve had for over 2 years for lunch because it took much longer than we expected. I’m glad we have dental insurance, and have a place to use it at, and can still go to our same old dentist office, even though it’s a distance away.

I weeded and hoed quite a bit. I tucked in more green bean seeds where they got eaten by birds or slugs, and planted a short, new row of lettuce. I like to plant little bits often so we always have some.

I mowed the lawn and planted a couple of flowers here and there. Some of the seeds I’ve planted are starting to look like they will survive and I will have flowers eventually from them.

I found a ham for 69c/lb. It was the last one. It was close to expiration, but we’ve already been eating it and it won’t be a problem to use it up. I got Bugles for $1/bag (7.5 oz). I shared some today with the family, but most are for summer fun activities.

Patsy’s birthday was Friday. We took her to Red Robin, using a gift card from Christmas and let her have milkshakes and French fries for dinner. Yup. No healthy food for her. Just that!

Saturday was Abbie’s birthday. My oldest and my youngest. What a pair:). The 3 of us went to the zoo to celebrate. We used my zoo pass. It was my gift to Abbie–we just wanted to spend some time, and this was a super fun way to do that. Patsy borrowed my phone and took a lot of pictures.

We had a really nice time being together.

Ja’Ana’s Graduation


We finally found a dress yesterday.  Whew!


At first, I wondered if it was too fancy, but she really wanted this one.  She looked so nice, and it fit in perfectly.  She was just right.  There were other girls with super fancy dresses, along with some who chose more casual attire.  She also got high heeled black shoes, but wore the white ones in the car and to the rehearsal.  Once she put those babies on, I felt even shorter than usual:)


And, then……She graduated!


IMG_7223¬† It’s nice to have another milestone achieved. ¬†Tonight, I’m going to chill for a while, then up and at ’em bright and early in the morning to cook, clean, shop and decorate for the big party on Saturday to celebrate with family and friends.