• Finances,  Food,  Investments

    Income Tax Refund Report

    I spent $296 at the grocery store the day before my birthday. The kid seemed nervous at our barren pantry so I sorted it. I’ll not have her skipping meals because she’s worried that I can’t afford it. Just because she can’t chip in towards the grocery expense right now doesn’t mean that I’ll let her starve. The food should…

  • Empty Nest,  Food,  Personal

    The Miracle of Water

    It was close to midnight. I padded into the kitchen to quench my thirst and picked up the water pitcher. I blinked at the heft. Huh? I raised it up to examine the water level. It was full. My water pitcher is never full. The only way I can ever get a drink of water out of it is to fill…

  • Finances,  Food,  Frugality

    Resisting Temptation

    It was early evening. I was on my way home from work, hungry after my shift because I’d not eaten since the day before. The aroma from a local pizza place called to me, enticing me with its flavorful aroma. My nose went on high alert. My stomach started growling. My eyes drifted to the restaurant as I began to…

  • Food

    Beans and Cornbread

    Katie and I have been rather busy as we settle into this new year. While my daughter typically picks up something to eat while she’s at work or out with friends I usually don’t have time to even think about food until I arrive home from work in the evenings. By then I’m so tired I don’t even want to…

  • Food,  Frugality

    Living Large on a Shoestring

    I might live cheap but I do live well. I like to take advantage of sales in order to enjoy life as much as possible. One of the major ways I do this is on food. I am a huge fan of quality meat. I enjoy a nice steak as much as the next person but I rarely treat myself…

  • Finances,  Food,  Frugality

    Bargain Food

    One of the ways I stretch my dollars is by taking advantage of the fact that I work in a grocery store. Every single shift I look around for good deals and take advantage when I can. For instance, when my employer issued coupons for a free 24-pack of bottled water with a purchase a while back, I bought some…

  • Finances,  Food,  Frugality

    Grocery Savings

    One of the things I have never done is factor the cost of food into my budget. Our spending varies too much based on bargains, bulk buying, and available finances for us to set aside a certain amount every month. While some months we barely buy the basics like milk, other months we come across good deals to take advantage…

  • Food,  Frugality

    Magic Bullet

    The other day my daughter saved one of those Magic Bullet mixer kits from being tossed. She brought it home and announced that we would once again be able to make smoothies. I had an even better idea. One of our favorite treats in the summer just happens to be milkshakes but due to the price we are rarely able…

  • Food,  Simplicity

    Simple Indoor Hobbies for Everyday Happiness

    Written by Zak Andrews.    Living a simpler life means you have to see the beauty in everyday things and activities. But in the midst of a hectic lifestyle, it’s sometimes hard to have spare time to sit back and relax. People are so busy with work and some even have extra jobs on the side. Others have businesses that require almost…

  • Food

    The Meditative Properties of Bread Making

    Here’s a treat from way back during my Associated Content days. Enjoy! It’s there. Waiting in the darkness. When you turn out the light it comes. Whispering, worrying, tormenting. You toss, you turn – sleep eludes as you continue to be tortured by the thoughts swirling within your mind. Oozing, shrieking, pulling at you, dragging you inexorably toward an abyss…

  • Food

    Don’t Throw Your Pickle Juice Away

    Pickle juice is one thing in this house that never gets thrown away. In fact, we occasionally run out of pickle juice before we empty the pickles from the jar (we have to eat fast then!). One of our main uses for pickle juice is to drink it as a dietary supplement. It helps with digestion and stomach upsets much…

  • Food,  Frugality

    How to Tenderize Meat Without a Gadget

    This is one of the earlier posts that has been salvaged.  It was originally posted on September 24, 2009. If you have ever dealt with a tough piece of meat, you know it can be frustrating. The temptation is high to buy that hammer especially designed to tenderize that piece. You don’t have to. In fact, you already have something…

  • Food,  Frugality,  Holidays,  Recycling

    How to Eat Your Christmas Tree

    Okay, folks, time to recycle that tall piece of greenery you have stuck in the corner of your living room. While most of us just toss it out with the trash, did you know that you could actually eat it? I’m serious, you really can. I’ve known for a while that you can actually eat pine trees. In fact, you should…

  • Food,  Organization

    Groceries

    Tonight I watched my daughter enjoy watching the season of The Saddle Club that she checked out from the library today. She watched every single episode, and one episode twice! We went to Sam’s Club to purchase potatoes, yeast, baking soda, brown gravy mix, vinegar and some meat. Total bill was $36 and change. Not bad for what we got. Everything but…

  • Food,  Frugality

    Wants, Needs, and Urges

    I want a vegetable peeler. I don’t NEED one. In fact, I haven’t owned one since I gave the one I inherited from my mother away years ago… I never could figure out how to use it, so out of my home it went… but now I am thinking that perhaps one may be useful for the larger volume of…

  • Food,  Frugality

    How to Tenderize Meat Without a Gadget

    If you have ever dealt with a tough piece of meat, you know it can be frustrating. The temptation is high to buy that hammer especially designed to tenderize that piece. You don’t have to. In fact, you already have something in your kitchen that will tenderize that cut of meat just as well as a mallet. It’s called a…

  • Food

    The Vegetable Garden

    In today’s world of mass-market food fluff there is a small blip on the radar. That blip is the vegetable garden. If done right, a small garden can provide a wonderful service to our budget as well as a fresh and healthy taste to our palette. It isn’t an instant thing, however. A large number of us (myself included) grew…

  • Finances,  Food,  Frugality,  Minimalism

    Grocery Dilemma

    Today the need arose to restock some perishables, so off I went to the grocery. Pork loin was $1.69 a pound, but only if you bought the mega family size packs. The next best price? $2.99 a pound. Such a dilemma. Do I purchase several pounds of a food we don’t eat regularly? Package it, freeze it, hope to skate…

  • Food

    Spoilage

    Despite my best attempts, some things still get forgotten. Someone had given me a large amount of cucumbers. We have eaten and eaten, yet some were still left in the fridge. The other day I purchased a small amount of squash for meals next week, carefully placing them and the corn in the veggie drawer. My loving daughter decided to…

  • Food

    Today’s Meal Plan

    For breakfast the rice cooker is whipping up a batch of rice. Rice with cinnamon sugar and cream – a staple around here. Leftovers will be saved for dinner. I think for this evening I will fire up the little hibachi grill to cook up a purely vegetarian meal of bbq cabbage, corn on the cob, and either grilled bell…