Tag Archives: grandkids

Thriving In My Thrifty Week-June 20, 2022

We went berry picking at a local farm. Jake had a blast on the playground and in the pipe, where other kids rolled him around!

I picked enough strawberries to fill 8 quart-sized ziplocks and to make another double batch of jam. We also ate a bunch of them fresh. This year, berries are almost $2/lb if you pick them yourself in our immediate area. They are $2.40/lb if you go up toward Portland. If you buy them already picked, in our area, they are anywhere from $32/flat to $46/flat. That’s about 10-12 pounds. I’m so glad we could pick them ourselves!

I made a bouquet from Japanese iris from my yard and the last bit of baby’s breath from Patsy’s party. I cleaned the bathroom really, really well and spruced it up with the flowers. I cleaned and mopped several times. Rob and I were joking around that it was hard to believe I had done it, after all the garden dirt was tracked in over and over. A few minutes after I got the bathroom done, Malcolm had a bath and when he took his boot off, it was full of dirt…which was dumped on the floor…and there I went again!

As is normal this time of year, I spent quite a bit of time weeding, hoeing and caring for the garden and flowerbeds. I harvested snow peas several times, along with a few green onions and lots of lettuce–gallons and gallons. I shared some, we had so much. It’s so good, but a person can only eat so much and I’m happy to know people who also like to eat it. Once I’ve gone to all the trouble to grow it, it’s satisfying to see it used! Since I have multiple succession plantings going, I rarely run out from spring until fall.

I did have a lot of help some days. Thankfully, the help got new boots “Pa” found at a yard sale for $1, as he grew out of his red ones. He has tools he received from his first birthday, and is all set.

We had to move locations after several veggies were in grave danger from the wild shoveler!

“Double trouble” kept our lives interesting. These are the M and M bandits here…..trying to get candy out of those big containers. They look guilty, for sure, but actually Grandpa lets them play with them. There are a few candies in the bottoms of the containers, and they shake them around a lot. There are a few M and M’s eaten over time, but not as many as Mac wishes.

This was a week filled with little boys. We had our grandsons several times, our nephew 3 times, as usual, and one day, I also had 2 neighbor boys for several hours, along with one grandson and nephew. It was a wild week! My neighbor gave me a gift card, to thank me for filling in when her normal sitter had a crisis, which was totally unnecessary, but gratefully received.

I did a lot of grocery shopping with some extra money we had, including Costco. It’s nice to have some of those things like Ziplock bags restocked. I use so many in the summer to preserve fruits and vegetables. Even with re-washing, bags are used up rapidly. Of course, I got a $4.99 rotisserie chicken. Easy for those busy days!

We went to several stores, and gleaned the bargains from each one. I was delighted to get 9c/lb watermelon at Safeway. Grocery Outlet had a large bag of Pamela’s gluten-free pancake and baking mix for $12, quite a savings, and a few other items I could use. We ended up at Winco for the 98c/can olives and a few other items that are less expensive there. I bought diapers. I have tried the Safeway diapers a couple of times now and I’m very satisfied. They are a few dollars less than the Huggies. I had an Ibotta reward for baby food, and got that, too.

Meals were made from scratch, as always. I made salad after salad–garden salad, chef salad with meat and cheese, crab salad, and turkey meat taco salad on the day my Mom came to visit. We had sandwiches and hamburgers. I made chicken-rice soup, which is a big hit with the babies. Monday evening, I just took things from the fridge and used them up. We had cooked carrots, stir-fried celery and snow peas, and mashed potatoes from the bottom of a bag of potatoes. I added a little chicken and there we were!

Our neighbor gave us 2 Dungeness crabs he caught. We cracked them out Sunday. I love crab, but don’t buy it because it’s very expensive and we can catch them occasionally. We haven’t been crabbing for a long time haven’t had any to eat lately, so it was a real treat.

We took plenty of walks! Sometimes we found a few pop cans laying around and hauled them home. Rob did Bottle Drop and with all the cans everyone gave us, plus our own, he put $49 on the card. That will be worth even more groceries, as I use the 20% + feature when I redeem them at the store.

This pretty well sums up how we felt at the end of some days! Happy, but ready for our rest:)

Thriving In My Thrifty Week–July 13, 2021

A few years ago, Rob picked up quart-sized ziplock bags full of home-saved zinnia seeds at a yard sale for 25c/bag. He got several. I planted some in the garden then, and then they started dropping seeds. This is one of many volunteers in my garden that I am enjoying immensely. I found one bag left in my seed stash and I planted in in a front flowerbed. Many of them came up and a bunch of them survived the slugs. They are blooming now, which makes me happy.

My newest planting of lettuce came up. I like to keep it going all summer so we can have salad all the time. I was doubtful that this planting would sprout because it’s been so hot, so I was delighted to see them pop up. A few snow peas sprouted, too, and so far I have one new summer squash sprout. Succession planting is one way to keep the veggies coming until frost.

I was down at the hospital all day yesterday. A family member broke their leg and needs surgery. We are taking turns going over there until they get fixed and released. While I was gone, Rob took leftover fruit and made a mixed cobbler. He used canned cherries, a handful of blueberries from our bush, leftover pie filling from the 4th of July and whatever else he could find that was getting old. The fruit was not wasted and tasted great.

He also made a sweet and sour chicken and rice. I’m still getting snow peas from the garden and he used chicken I got on sale for 97c/lb for boneless/skinless breast. Carrots and celery are almost always in my fridge. We are still working on the 50 lbs of Jasmine rice Rob got at the beginning of Covid for only $10. It was marked down because the store had gotten in the wrong item, so were selling it quickly.

I cooked a lot this week, and made chicken-rice soup, salmon, sandwiches with potato salad, and lots more.

We have had our older grandson quite a bit this past week. Our daughter also brought new baby over for us to hold several times. With both Rob and I on baby-holding duty and Patsy and Jake to amuse Malcolm at times, she can keep getting stronger and we can have fun:). I also went to several doctor appointments with them, driving, carrying kids and/or carseats and carriers from here to there, and so forth. A few food items were cooked and sent over to their house, and I helped facilitate grocery shopping.

I made 2 receiving blankets. I used flannel purchased on sale some time ago. My daughter wanted ones that were slightly larger than the 30″ x 30″ size they come in around here, I just cut the flannel and narrow-hemmed it. It wasn’t hard.

The flowers Rob grew or wintered over continue to amaze me with their beauty. I look at them every day.