Category Archives: God and Grandma

By the grace of God and grandma. Frugal living and good stewardship.

yardsale

Yard Sales 101

Okay folks, it is yard sale season.  I am gearing up for a good hunt!!  By now you should know me well enough to know that I am a planner when it comes to shopping.  Living on a budget has taught me one thing:  plan before you shop.  Although, yard sales are fun and inexpensive; a penny and a quarter can add up quickly.

Location:

It is wise to plot your course when yard saling.  You can find your local newspaper will have many of the sales listed in their classifieds.  Plan a morning route using the addresses listed.  I am a big fan of “neighborhood” sales.  I actually only shop at “neighborhood” sales now.. competitive pricing.  Some neighborhoods offer maps to the houses.

Money:

Stock up on quarters and ones..  And have a spending limit.  I usually only take $20-$40 with me.  Once the money is gone I am done… no excuses and no trips to the ATM.  I will say this though..I broke the rule once…shocking isn’t it.. I happened upon a bedroom suite for my daughter.  It was practically new and only $100.  I pounced!  Called Mark to hit the ATM!

Shopping List:

Oh yeah! That’s right you read it correctly… a shopping list.  I make a list of items that I need to either replace because ours is too worn out or things we wish we could have.. I am always looking out for certain things.  I know I’m weird but it makes the shopping less compulsive if I have a list.

This year’s list:

gallon size pitcher

picture frames sizes 11×14

king size bedding

twin size bedding

books to read on vacation

lawn furniture

Yard Sales are fun and they are a real economical way to shop.  I have enough stuff already so it is really hard to not buy things just because they are cheap.  But, trust me if you go looking with a list you will think twice about buying something compulsively because remember you only have so much money with you..  Oh and don’t forget to ask if they will take less than the sticker price.

Have fun!!

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Earth Day

Why is it that we designate one day each year to focus on an idea?  Don’t you think the world would be a better place if we lived life as if every day was Christmas?  People would be singing and being nice every day.  In April, we celebrate our Administrative Professionals.  Suppose we celebrated our employees every day..don’t you think that  creating an environment that is respected and appreciated that job performance would increase??  How many of you celebrated National No Housework Day on April 7th??  If you look around my place, you would know I am still celebrating!!  There are so many days it is hard to celebrate them all… well, here’s an idea,  what if we lived every day in God’s Word..He teaches for us to love one another and to do unto others as we would for ourselves.  If we would just live our lives as He has intended every day would be Christmas… we would be singing His praises and loving God for Christ.  Our employees wouldn’t need a special day to point out the fact we appreciate them…because our Christ-like actions would already show them.   And as for housework… you know where I am going so I won’t even start..

So now today is Earth Day.  The day we are more “Green” focused.  I believe that was one of the first responsibilities God gave us:

Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” Genesis 1:26

He gave us “dominion” over this ONE Earth..shame on us for taking it for granted.  So instead of making it a point to be aware of going green..let’s actually do it.

And here’s a few ideas you can incorporate on a daily basis:

1.  Rid your home and routine of paper products like paper towels, paper plates, paper napkins.  You can use old worn out T-shirts for the towels.  Use real plates and linen napkins instead of paper.  It really makes a difference not only for the environment but your budget.

2.  Ban plastic baggies in your home.  Try out my earth-friendly baggie alternatives for packing lunches.  Use the bowls and corning-ware you got as wedding gifts to store food in the refrigerator.   I put plates over my bowls to keep food from drying out.

3.  Refuse the plastic bags from the grocery store and use cloth totes instead.

4.  Make it a point not to forget your cloth totes before heading out to the store.. I feel so guilty when I forget.

5.  Compost

6.  Set your thermostats to 78-80 during the summer and 65-68 in the winter.   You will be surprised in how much money you will save.

7.  Use your dryer less.  I hang out my clothes.  I know it isn’t for everyone but it is a good workout and I love the lower electric bills.

8.  Recycle… Recycle.. Recycle…  I have been plagued with guilt on this one..we do not have a convenient nor comprehensive way of recycling in my area.   It is time that it changes…there are three different recycling drop off centers in our county… in order for me to recycle paper, plastic and aluminum cans I will have to spend half a day driving from place to place because each area only accepts a certain  recyclable item.  The burning of gas and the inconvenience turns people off from recycling.. I am one of those turned off. .. and I am ashamed to admit it… Perhaps our local government needs to be more aware of  Earth Day.   Let’s call them today.. shall we???

9.  Drive less.. walk more…  Do I need to point out the obvious?

10.  Do your part.. parents teach your kids…kids teach your parents… God only gave us one Earthly home.

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Challenge Update

On April 7th, I challenged you guys to clean out your freezer. You were challenged to make your meals from your freezer and see how long you can go without grocery shopping.  And in the meantime, you were asked to see how much money you have saved by eating out of your freezer.  I’ve been doing this right along with you!!

Here’s my freezer on April 7th:

freezer 001

And on April 16th:

freezer 002

In those 11 days I only purchased 1 gallon of milk, a tub of butter, and a dozen eggs.  I even skipped purchasing Angel Food for this month.  My normal Wal-Mart trip costs me $120 a week.  Those 11 days cost me only $5.30.

I sat down to do my weekly menu on the 16th.  I still had enough food to cover dinners this week and most of next week.  But, I was out of sugar, coffee, creamer, sweet-n-low, and kool-aide.  I couldn’t bake and, poor Mark, needed his coffee!!  $29.41 was spent for the groceries.  So now we are back on track and I can’t wait to share a picture next week of the freezer!

Remember the freezer challenge ends next week on the 28th.  Email me pictures and let me know how much money you have saved.   Someone will win a freezer cookbook!!

Happy eating!!

How’s the Challenge?

I have seen a little head way happening in my freezer.  We have enjoyed yummy steaks, turkey, and lots of frozen green beans.  [I'm still pulling out the green beans... I feel like Jesus is playing a trick on me... giving he did the same with the fish and bread.. apparently, my supply has no end... call me if you need any green beans.] I found the top shelf yesterday and I am thrilled.

I received an email from a fan of this challenge.. oh, I am sorry.. where are my manners??  I posed a challenge last week to clean out the freezer… click here for the challenge.. It was a thrill to see someone really taking the challenge to heart.  I want to share because she is so inspiring…

From what I gathered, she cleaned her freezer and pantry.  She categorized what she had in stock and built a menu plan around the food.  Smart Cookie!!  Whoop Whoop Brownie Points!! She is a working mom so she put everything back in the freezer grouped as a meal.  So all she has to do is pull out the pile and prepare..Clever!!  And then she took the time out to send me a power point of her freezer project.

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Doesn’t this make you want to just run to your freezer and get it organized!!  Kudos, Sista!!!!!!

Remember the challenge ends on April 28th and I will be giving a cookbook to a lucky someone who enters!!

freezermeals007

Frustrations or Tribulations

Don’t you just love it when someone says something profound and then all of a sudden, in every situation, it keeps popping in your head proving their profound statement even more true???  That is what has been happening to me ever since I was in Breaking Free on Tuesday.  Beth Moore just seems to peg a few points for me… over and over again… perhaps God is trying to tell me something!!

Beth [in my mind we are on a first name basis.. I have seen her on DVD enough that I feel like I know her personally]… anyway Beth was talking about how we have confused frustration with tribulations.  Whenever a monkey wrench is thrown, our daily plans turn into havoc or if things don’t go our way, we act as if our frustrated situation is a tribulation.  So being the the word nerd I am, I just had to prove Beth wrong… looking up tribulation this is what I discovered…

-noun

1. grievous trouble; severe trial or suffering.

2.an instance of this; an affliction, trouble, etc.

Okay, Beth, you won…  but…but…but…when the kids are shouting and the lady cuts me off….but, but, but, but….((sigh)) you’re right..  Of course, during our Wednesday night Bible class, what was pointed out?????  Paul and Silas in prison, beaten, broken, bleeding, surrounded by skanky filth, and rats (Acts 16)…HELLO!  TRIBULATION!!!!!  And here’s my response: tears.  My so called “tribulations” are nothing in comparison.  SO why am I complaining?  I mean Paul and Silas began singing praise to God during their tribulation.  Now, how am I reacting to my “frustration?”  [Okay, I am going to be honest... sometimes I become a big old whiney baby.]  Anyone else???

***

Okay, folks, I posed a challenge yesterday..Remember??  Eating Cleaning out our freezers??  Seeing how long we can go without going to the grocery store except for the basics (milk, eggs, bread, and butter)??  So, for my first freezer meal I got creative!!

I took two bags for frozen chicken split breasts..boiled the chicken and removed the bones and skin.  Boiled a bag of carrots and peas.  Cooked spaghetti noodles in the chicken broth (the water I boiled the chicken in).  Chopped a bundle of green onions.  Threw 1/3 of the chicken, drained carrots and peas, green onions, and noodles in a big bowl.  I poured a small bottle of ranch dressing and added a little salt and pepper..MMMMM  Yummy!!

From this:

freezer meals 001

To this:

freezer meals 007

Don’t forget, I want you to document your results and I want to see your freezer.  Send me your story and pix to regina@reginadettra.com by April 28th.  I will pick a winner and send you a freezer cookbook!!  Click here for more details.