Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Making The Clothes You Have Into The Clothes You Want

Years ago, when I was first getting into teaching, I bought this lace cardigan to make some of my dresses work appropriate.  Unfortunately, it was the dumbest cardigan ever, in that the button was placed in a totally ridiculous position, & essentially covered up nothing.  It hung in the back of my closet for years & only for me to occasionally pull it out, try it on, &  become disgusted, again, with the ridiculous placement of button, & hideously large, accompanying button hole.

Finally, it occurred to me, that if the button & huge button hole were what bothered me, why not fix the problem?  I sewed the button hole shut, used a seam ripped to rip off the button, & had a somewhat close version of the cardigan I'd always hoped to have.  The neck is still a little odd for my liking, but for now, it's a vast improvement from the random button.  Sometimes, a little creative thinking, & a fresh perspective, is all it takes to make something new again. 

Monday, May 27, 2013

A Simple Way To Say Thank You

Last week we were hit hard by a stomach flu, and by hit hard, I mean essentially annihilated.  During that time, two dear friends dropped off some get well supplies for us, so I wanted to find a way to say thank you. 

Fortunately, two of our rose bushes are in bloom, so I put the clippings in jars I saved from candles, & the bouquets came together beautifully.  The notes are Hallmark & I got the box for $0.35 at our scratch & dent store!  They're so cheery & I love the lined coordinating envelopes.

I was pleased that I was able to use things from our home to make such pretty little thank yous, especially for such deserving people. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

DIY Foaming Body Wash

After pulling out a new bottle of body wash, inspiration hit, & I decided to have a go at making foaming body wash.  Much like foaming hand soap or dish soap, this helps your soap last longer & save some cash. 

Simply take your chosen your body wash & an empty foaming soap bottle, 

Pour between 1/4 and 1/3 full of body wash, fill the remainder with water.

Combine, & voila, you have foaming body wash, which works just as well as the regular stuff.  This is quite possibly one of the easiest ways to go green & save some green, I highly recommend it.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Today's Shopping Trip

Several weeks ago, we traveled to Iowa, & I got some Earth's Best diapers for Harper girl.  Though I love Earth's Best, the diapers just did not agree with her.  Harper's bottom was absolutely covered in blisters & they didn't improve for a week, even after returning to cloth diapers.  It was horrible.  Because the reaction was so severe I called the company, & they were kind enough to send 6 free food product coupons, & 2 $0.55 coupons. 

Today, the girls & I went to Toys R Us to return the second, unopened package of diapers, & to use my coupons to stock up on baby food for our upcoming month of travel.  

Here's my haul:  3 EB organic puffs, 1 box of  EB organic cereal, 2 boxes of EB organic teething biscuits, 6 Earth's Best organic pouches, & 6 Babies R Us baby food pouches, $29.84 full retail. 

After coupons the total was $11.18, but I had the credit from the returned diapers, so I only paid $1.35! Not too shabby! 

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Frugal Accomplishments Of The Past Two Weeks

Things have been a little chaotic around here as we've celebrated 3 birthdays, Mother's Day, & are preparing for our upcoming anniversary.  As a result, we've been out of our regular schedule, so this is a list of my frugal accomplishments over the last two weeks. 

Our haul
  •  Our major accomplishment was strawberry picking.  We went to a local farm & hand picked 21 lbs.  It was a wonderful time as a family, Harper was very content in her stroller, & Emerson was quite the little picker.  After the work we were able to see the animals on the farm, which the girls just loved.  
  • From the strawberries I froze a gallon whole, sliced, packed, & froze 16 cups of strawberries, & made 10 jars of freezer jam. & a lemon scented strawberry mascarpone trifle.  The only down side was my plastic huller broke, so I had to replace it.  Fortunately $1.99 bought a super cute metal huller with a strawberry on the handle. 
  • I saved the mushy parts of the strawberries & their collective juices for smoothies
Emerson & JC
  • We ate out for  JC's birthday, but ate at lunch time & used coupon, which feed our family of four for $12.
  •  I took the girls to library for Toddler Time
  • We took the girls to a free carnival thrown by Parents as Teachers, a program in which we participate.
  • We ate dinner at church on Wednesday
  • I sorted through hand-me-downs for the girls & added the next sizes to their closets.  Each time I do this I am blown away by the generosity of our families, and feel so blessed to be able to pull out clothes to fit our girls needs. 
Little donkey at the farm
  • I hung many loads of wash on the line, as well as one load inside 
  • I made a batch of laundry soap
  • I cleaned out & organized the freezer
  • We ate bagels & bread we got for a dollar at the bakery outlet
  • I rescued batteries from random items in the house to be reused in a few of the girls' things.
  • I made foaming body wash
  • I gave our teething Harper girl Tylenol we got as a free sample from the pediatrician
  • JC cleaned out our garage & we pulled out stuff for our upcoming garage sale
  • I made rags from a holey pair of pants 
  • I mended a sweater & reattached the handle of Emerson's favorite purse
  • I got a free pair of undies from Victoria Secret for my birthday
  • I used a $10 any $10 purchase to get two t-shirts for $4 
  • I sent away for some free samples & received some in the mail
  • We lost our Roku remote, which was not good, but we found a FREE app, so our phones now double as remotes
  •  I walked to church for choir practice instead of driving
  • I received my first All You magazine from a subscription I earned with Coke Rewards.  

Hope you all have been well & have been finding ways to help your pocket books & the Earth.  Have a good week!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Make It Do: Creating a Shaded Child's Wagon

We've been spending a lot of time outdoors, & it has been absolutely wonderful being able to enjoy some sunshine & watch the girls play together.  The only unfortunate thing is our backyard doesn't get much shade, so while I'm hanging laundry & Harper is sitting in our little utility wagon, she's basically roasting in the sun. 


Rather than go in search of a more child friendly wagon, I decided to rig up an umbrella on the wagon in a rather ghetto fabulous way.  One rubber band, a large twist tie, & a safety pin later, the umbrella was secure, & the girls had some serious shade in their wagon.

Of course, by the time I got the wagon all arranged, Harper decided she wanted to get out and walk. Oh well, at least it will be ready when the next load needs to be hung! 

Monday, April 29, 2013

99 Tips & Tricks To Make Life Easier

I've shared a condensed version of this, but this is the mother load of clever little tips & tricks.  Read it, bookmark it, & revisit.  I'm certain you'll find something new with every read.  Enjoy!