Sunday, July 23, 2017
Frugal Friday: Money Saving Weekly Recap and Garden Update
*Sings* "Oooohhhh! One little, two little, three little broody!!!"
Okay, I'm done, but that needed to happen *laugh*. If you can't laugh, you cry.
Anyway, I've heard of "togetherness" but these hens are driving me nuts. I have a clucking evil mass of chickens glaring at me from the one area they've all jammed themselves into when I open the coop (usually if chickens are broody they do NOT jam themselves into an area together, so my chickens are even baffling other chicken owners...cute), I'm getting no eggs, the coop smells so foul I went out and bought bedding to clean the coop from top to bottom this week (broody hens create some raannnnkkkk foul messes and yay me I have three of them...I've been scooping the mess into the compost pile, but it ain't cutting it) even though I really couldn't afford bedding right now. I just can't believe the way these chickens are working out (or not in this case). I get one solid week where at least one chicken isn't broody and then the chickens domino at different rates and go broody one after the other. In this case they went broody within three days of each other. The amount they are going broody is nuts. We don't have time to process the chickens right now, so I'm kind of stuck with an evil, clucking, foul mess making, mass of chicken flesh that is costing me an arm and a leg to feed and are costing me a fortune just keeping the coop and nesting boxes clean (since that is where they are insisting on staying). And the poor rooster is super loud and boisterous right now because he's running outside all alone and wanting company...at least he goes to bed at a decent hour so he's not driving the neighbors crazy. Fun times *sigh*.
Anyway *shakes head* sorry. I have a sinus headache about a mile wide today and am really tired after not sleeping much last night, so the whole chicken situation isn't as funny as it really should be.
So onto the not "frugal fails" portion of the week!
2. My father-in-law made my mother-in-law rip out all of her raspberry bushes! I wanted to cry when I went over and saw that at their place because he decided that the bushes were attracting ants (with no berries on the bushes that one baffled me). I didn't bank on being able to pick raspberries at her place and all, but it was nice to be able to do so, so no free raspberries this year from there :(. I looked around the yard this week and did find that the raspberries we have growing wild around the yard are producing decently well. Mind you they are still REALLY green, but I might get as much as a quart from them this year, which would be nice.
In the meantime I went into my freezer and found the one lowly bag of raspberries I had carefully saved from my mother-in-laws bushes last year and tried to figure out something that I could make with them as there wasn't enough in the bag to make jam out of. I THINK I came up with a solution that might work. I'm going to make the raspberries into juice and then mix it in with the peach juice I still have in the freezer from when I processed peaches. Raspberry peach jelly doesn't sound too bad does it? Anyone ever tried that flavor combination before? Any advice?
Anyway the pitcher makes an awesome container for Tang or orange juice :). I'm happy.
4. I rearranged our living room furniture this week. It's amazing how you do something like that and it feels like a whole new room after a while. It really does cheer you up to do something like that when life starts to feel a bit overwhelming :).
5. I took advantage of a deal that Rifftrax.com was putting on for their 11 year anniversary. They had a 20% off site wide sale (which I actually think might still be going on today, actually) with a certain code and then if you put in another code (you could stack them) you got a free audio riff of a movie we own, so it was like getting a free movie almost. We had credits at Rifftrax, believe it or not, from the Kickstarter I donated to with them? Yes, the 1.00 donation I did. We owned a bunch of the riffs they had on their "free shorts" that they gave out to everyone that donated, so we ended up with credits for the riffs we owned. So, for a 1.00 donation I actually MADE money on the transaction (which I feel kind of bad about, actually *laugh*). I used the coupon codes to get enough shorts (they start a .99 each) to fill a DVD and got the free audio riff and got them for pretty much free. This will really come in handy when we want something new to watch.
6. My husband stumbled across a new to me YouTube channel that I've become somewhat addicted to. You should check it out. It's called "18th Century Cooking" and is by a living historian. It can be found HERE. I am seriously going to try the fried chicken recipe. It sounds neat :).
7. What do you do when you have to use up some marshmallow creme that is going grainy and separating on you? You make Mississippi Mud! I do it the "not quite as rich" but easy way. Take your favorite brownies (I used a mix I had in the pantry) and bake according to package directions. When hot straight out of the oven, smooth over a small container of marshmallow creme and then let cool completely. Once cool top with chocolate frosting (or chocolate glaze if you want a crunchy finish), cut into small pieces (as the finished dish is pretty rich) and enjoy! We're eating the one I made a couple of days ago slowly, but it'll get there as now the marshmallow creme is used up.
9. When the chickens ran out of grit in the coop (see the note about the chickens NOT leaving the nesting box area...grumble) I was going to run out and get chicken grit when I happened to be on one of the poultry groups I was a member of on Facebook and someone mentioned that buying grit was way more expensive then buying traction sand from our local lumber yard and the traction sand was the perfect size for chicken grit. My husband has a few bags of traction sand he keeps in the back of his pickup for additional weight in the winter to help with traction, so I went and stole a bag once I asked him if it was okay. The traction sand is lasting a LOT longer and it definitely saved me some money!
10. I darned some socks and mended a hole in a shirt this week.
And now onto the garden update!
I harvested a FEW tiny little barese chard plants last night as well just to thin them and see if I could get them to grow more. They are still REALLY tiny, like spinach sized plants, and I'm thinking that I might be harvesting them here, planting more spinach and just buying some Alaska grown chard at the store later to put up for winter as so far there is NO WAY I'm going to get enough out of these plants to store for winter. Disappointing to say the least, but this year has really put a damper on everything growing well. I mean even my cabbages are taking forever, compared to how they normally grow up here, to form heads and are JUST starting to form them, so here's hoping they get a move on here.
We finally got some decent sunny weather here the last few days (of course the clouds are supposed to move back in tomorrow), which is all the rat tailed radishes needed to shoot up in all directions and start producing radish pods. I should be able to start harvesting some of those in the next couple of days (as they are still a bit small right now). I am looking forward to getting more of those this year as they make really good relish!
And there you are folks. Some of my frugal adventures this week. How did you do?