This is just a mish mash of thoughts...
This spring when people were hoarding things and panic shopping, one big ticket item that people were desiring was a freezer. I thought, well, if they want freezers, then this summer canning supplies may be in short supply. I made sure I stocked up on lids (I have the jars and rings) so I would have what I needed for this year's canning. So, turn the calendar pages a few months and a friend asked me if I knew where she could get lids and rings (she found jars at a thrift store) because every store in our town was out. We were going to a bulk food store in an Amish community so I looked. They also were sold out of all canning supplies. Wonder what will be next!?! My prediction will be flour, sugar, butter, and other baking things. Unless things change drastically, my church will not be having its Christmas bazaar and a lot of people go to these to get cookies and sweet breads and pies so I think they will bake at home. I plan to pick up an extra bag of flour and sugar this week to have in case the rush starts.
I have slowly been working on my stock pile of things. Yesterday we picked herbs and I washed them and prepared them to let them dry in the sunroom. We also picked bell peppers and I washed and chopped them to freeze them in freezer bags to have to cook with. Other than applesauce my canning is done for the year. I'm waiting for apples to hopefully go on sale. I have picked up an extra can of this and that when we go to the grocery so I don't feel like I'm hoarding, just preparing.
My dishwasher died over a week ago. We went to purchase one and the sales person reassured me they could get the particular model that we picked out. A week goes by and I get a call saying they aren't delivering it because they can't get it. I call and try to talk to the sales person who conveniently isn't working when I call only to find the thing is on back order under November 1st. I was not happy. She said the warehouse had it! The new sales person asked if I would be willing to consider another model. I finally said yes. Hopefully it will be delivered today. I feel the person who did the original sale should have called and told me that instead of making me wait almost a week before finding out. Customer service is a joke most of the time. This is just one reason I hate shopping.
We hit the thrift stores last Friday. One had new boxes of stationery for $1.50. It is name brand stuff. I got a few boxes. I write letters and I like nice stationery, but I refuse to pay $7 and $8 a box. I felt I got a bargain.
Hope everyone has a great week and stay safe and healthy!
Viewing the 'Shopping' Category
This is just a mish mash of thoughts...
It's August and before we know it, fall will arrive.
At least I hope we have a fall. It seems like the past few years we had summer, a day or two of fall, and then wham, winter! Same thing with spring, winter which lasted like forever, a day or two of spring, then summer.
DH's garden is slowing down. For a few weeks we were getting tomatoes galore. It was amazing! I canned and canned. At first, DH said maybe I should wait, and I said wait for what? We have the tomatoes, we want them this winter, so I need to can. He gave away tomatoes too. Well, it seems that was the big influx and now things are slowing down. As long as we still have some for the table, I'm happy. I'm just glad I canned and made spaghetti sauce.
Today we dug up the first planting of onions. I have used quite a few already so there were not many still in the ground, but we dug those up, and planted the last of the onion sets. I know we won't get any big enough for slicing, but we will have green onions into the fall. Although DH works the soil and has put down top soil, it was still kind of clay like. I think we are going to have to invest in some sand to loosen the soil up. I put egg shells, tea bags, and coffee grounds throughout the year to help replenish some nutrients and DH uses Miracle Gro granular fertilizer. Anyway, that was hot, dirty work to get the soil ready to plant the rest of the onion sets.
I think I have spent more time outside this year than I have since we married. I don't "do" outside due to allergies, but with DH's garden, I felt I needed to help him. He planted more tomatoes this year. I also helped him when he was trimming bushes earlier this summer.
The last few weeks our grocery bills have really gone down. I have worked to make things that we get from the garden. For brunch today we had tomato-basil omelets since we had a bunch of cherry tomatoes and plenty of basil. Last night we had chicken stir fry. I used onions, and bell peppers from the garden and mushrooms I had in the fridge. I normally also have zucchini and celery, but we didn't have either, so I just added more pepper and onion. It was delicious and hubby was happy to eat the fruits of his labor, so to speak.
I thought I did pretty well as far as the chicken. I bought a package with two chicken breasts. We had one chicken breast sliced in half long ways for supper Friday night, Last night was chicken stir fry with rice. So, one package of chicken and two meals. It sure helps with the grocery budget.
I have started picking and cleaning herbs and putting them in the sun room to air dry. Hopefully I will get the bulk of this done before fall arrives instead of rushing to finish like I normally do.
DH's bell peppers are really starting to come on. I normally chop a bunch up and freeze them so I have them for soups and casseroles during the winter.
I thought I'd post what our menus were this past week:
Sunday brunch: scrambled eggs with onions, bell pepper, Avocado, mushrooms, and oregano, sliced tomatoes, fruit salad
Sunday supper: Italian wedding soup (from freezer), applesauce
Monday lunch: Salad with cherry tomatoes
Monday supper: tuna cakes, risotto, sliced tomatoes, fruit salad
Tuesday lunch: peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, sliced tomatoes
Tuesday supper: Leftover beef roast from the previous week, mashed potatoes, carrots, sliced tomatoes, fruit salad.
Wednesday: sandwiches with thin sliced chicken and cheese, potato salad, sliced tomatoes, applesauce
Wednesday supper: spaghetti with homemade spaghetti sauce, green beans, cottage cheese, fruit salad
Thursday lunch: we went out!
Thursday supper: scrambled eggs, toast, sliced tomatoes, fruit salad
Friday lunch: Deli meat sandwiches, sliced tomatoes
Friday supper: thinly sliced chicken breast floured and seasoned and browned in olive oil, mashed potatoes, bell pepper, sliced tomatoes, peaches for dessert
Saturday brunch: we went out to a local restaurant
Saturday supper: chicken stir fry with rice, sliced tomatoes, fruit salad.
Yesterday was a busy shopping day, masks included. We decided to eat lunch out. I ordered a salad and although it was expensive - over $9, I brought half of it home so I had a second lunch today with it. While we were out in the north end of town, I decided to do some shopping. DH was surprised when I said I wanted to do some shopping because other than grocery stores and browsing thrift stores, I rarely want to go anywhere to shop. However, I had some things in mind that I was looking for.
Being a retired teacher, I still like using notebook paper. Staples had it on sale. While we were there, I noticed they had a 3 pack of Kleenex on sale as well so we bought that as well as some ink refills for a pen. I received a coupon for $10 off our next purchase of $20, so I think I may have to go back and get more Kleenex. DH has bad sinus problems and he goes through a ton of Kleenex besides using cloth hankies.
Our next foray was Joann Fabrics. I wanted one of those foam ink pads. I had another one that wasn't foam and it seemed to have dried up pretty quickly. I looked at yarn not because I wanted any, but I was nosy. It looked like someone had bought a lot of yarn because there were empty bins in some of the more economical yarn. I also wanted some elastic. Since I think we will be wearing masks for awhile, I wanted to try and make some masks. However, other than the really wide stuff, they were out and the clerk said people were in over the weekend shopping like mad for elastic and yarn. No kidding. The stamp pad was on sale. Yay, another savings!
We hit Walgreens to pick up a prescription and they had grape juice and peanut butter on sale. We drink a small glass of grape juice with supper since we are not wine drinkers. We have peanut butter sandwiches for lunch many times so figured we might as well stock up. I bought some of those elastic hair holders to use instead of elastic. They let me use my Balance Reward points for $20 so I spent $11 and some change there after they took off the $20. All in all, I spent less than $100, but felt like I had gotten some good deals and have worked on my stock pile of food and paper products. Plus, I had a couple of things that were wants: the stamp pad and the ink cartridges. Yes, I can use the free pens, but I really like the Cross pen I was given in 1979.
I spent part of the afternoon stamping some cards. I had found a new package of blank cards and envelopes at a thrift store for a quarter a couple of weeks ago so I thought I could stamp them with some designs. I have had the stamps for years and years. I had a red one and green one already so the black one just added to my collection. It was something fun to do.
So, that was it for my shopping trip. I was pleased with my results and shopping on a Monday later morning, early afternoon meant few crowds. No one to ask, "Who was that masked saver?"
I haven't blogged for awhile because I simply don't have too much to report. Just doing stuff around here and sheltering in place. I finished everything on my initial to do list so I'm starting another. Many of the things on my original list were things I had to do outside. I don't like working outside due to allergies and I get sunburned very easily, even with sunblock. So, when I finished everything I needed to do outside, I was ready to celebrate. It included painting the shed door, painting the sunroom door, and of course cleaning my car which I wrote about earlier.
I have my year's worth of green beans canned. I do it every April and May. Usually I can get fresh green beans on sale, but not so this year. Only one week did the grocers have them on sale and that was when things were still wild, so I didn't want to buy too many and look like a hoarder.
I have continued to crochet and loom scarves and hats for our knitting group even though we haven't been able to meet. Hopefully things will calm down before long and we will be able to meet.
I've come to the point where I make a bunch of lists. Maybe it's because I need to feel like I've accomplished something.
Our library finally decided to offer curbside pick up, only books they have, no interlibrary loan. I checked out 6 books last Friday and have read 4 of them already. I missed being able to read because I had basically read through what I had at home.
I wish I could report we are saving money big time, but it seems like groceries have gone up. Plus, when we do get something curbside, DH wants to give a bigger tip because he knows the restaurants and servers are struggling. We aren't going broke by any means and we figure they need the extra money.
I have only ordered once online for something and it was frustrating because it was to be shipped in 2-3 days (I paid for shipping) and it took over 2 weeks. Fortunately it wasn't anything that would spoil, but it was discouraging.
Our thrift stores opened up about a week ago with limits to how many could come in and we have to wear masks. We went through the 4 that were open. I did score a brand new case of wide mouth canning jars for $6 (name brand) and thought that was worth it. DH found a like new shirt he wanted. So, that made it fun at least that we found something.
Well, just thought I'd pop in and say howdy! Hope you are all doing well.
After a cool, dreary week, it has been nice to see the sun yesterday and today. Well, so far today. It's supposed to get cloudy as a cold front moves in with a chance of showers, but right now it is bright and looks springy.
DH is impatiently waiting until the chance of frost passes so he can start to plant part of his garden. We picked up some bell pepper and herbs as well as a few tomato plants before the governor has said lawn and garden places can only sell online or do curbside service. So, we move the plants inside on cold nights and then take them back outside when it is nice. We are getting our exercise anyway by doing this.
I'm impatient about the lettuce I planted way over a month ago. It's been so cold and gloomy that it has come up, but not much else. I have been covering it at night when it gets cold trying to keep it from getting frostbitten. It will probably surprise me and get big all of a sudden and I'm looking forward to when that happens.
We received our stimulus money and we let it sit in our checking account a couple of days and then moved it into savings. Right now we are doing OK money wise. I did order some whipped honey online this week and did a small Kohls order for underwear, but other than groceries and paying the regular bills, haven't been spending a lot. Other than these items, we haven't need anything. Just waiting and staying home, hoping this will soon pass.
We've seen things get a little better at the grocery stores the past couple of weeks. We shop at Aldi and Kroger. It's funny though, Kroger was totally out of flour and sugar last week. We didn't need any, just happened to go down that aisle to get something else and noticed the bare shelves. But Aldi had both. Kroger honestly had regular size packages of name brand tp too and Aldi had no tp. So, I guess it depends on the store and clientele as to what is available and what isn't. I was happy to be able to buy the loaves of bread we like. We haven't been able to for about 4 weeks.
Hope everyone is doing OK in the SA community. Hope you are all hanging in there!
The weather here in Central Illinois has been nothing short of gloomy until yesterday. We actually had an afternoon of sun after a morning of pea soup fog. DH got a chance to go out and work in the yard which delights him. He found two baby bunnies in the front yard. They've since moved which is good. He will be planning his garden and hopefully when it warms up, planting a garden and he doesn't like bunnies to use it as their personal buffet.
Illinois has been ordered to shelter in place since Saturday night. Two days ago I suggested to the Facebook group that our subdivision has that maybe we could do a zoo with stuffed animals for kids to see in windows since yesterday was supposed to be nice. One lady took the suggestion and ran with it so to speak...she made a list with street names and which animals, and it was nice seeing families going out with the checklist looking for the "zoo animals." This was not my original idea; I saw it online somewhere else. The best thing was people who normally never say anything would shout a hello if you were in the yard.
I guess one bad thing is I can see some neighbors who are not following the shelter in place order. People can still go to work if their place of employment is considered essential and that's not what I'm talking about. It's seeing people going to other people's homes and having people over or going shopping for non essential stuff. It angers me because it means they are doing this and however many other folks are doing it which is going to extend the outbreak as well as the sheltering in home.
I've kept busy doing cleaning and some crafting. I don't have the ability to make masks. So, I've worked on other items for donations later when this passes.
I think our grocery spending has increased some as some items have sort of increased. Last week there was so little bread at the store we wound up paying $4.50 for a loaf of organic. Granted, it was tasty, but, that over $2.50 more than what we would pay for a loaf. Last week the grocery stores were slammed and there were empty shelves in so many areas. When we went this week, there were many items there that were not there last week, including toilet paper. We didn't need any so we passed. Figured let those who were without get it. It was weird seeing the yogurt aisle riddled though. We eat yogurt for breakfast and although we found some for our breakfasts, not the kind we normally get, but oh, well. Guess it means we are having to be more flexible. As we walked by, we saw the ice cream case was pretty empty. I wonder if many of us will have put on weight once this is over. LOL
Hope you are all staying safe.
Wednesdays are normally our grocery shopping days. Mostly because I am retired and I don't have to shop on the weekends or evenings, and also because Wednesday is when the ads come out for the new sales. We usually go about mid morning before there is a huge crowd except during holidays and snow forecasts where people panic.
Well, I'm wondering if panic is the operative word as far as the Coronavirus. Yesterday our Aldi was really, really busy. It normally isn't when we go. Kroger wasn't as busy, but did have a few more than usual. I had my list of our regular stuff we buy every week at each store. I did need another item that made us go down and aisle at Kroger that I don't normally frequent. It wasn't for hand sanitizer or wipes, but it was the same aisle. And there, at Kroger, was an empty shelf and the labels indicated it was for hand sanitizer. A friend in a state over from us said she was at a Dollar store and the lady in front of her had cleaned out the shelves of cleaning supplies. Another friend who is visiting a friend out east said the stores were empty of cleaning supplies and toilet paper.
Yesterday the market was doing well and they said Campbell Soup was showing a gain because people were buying lots of soup and also canned goods.
I sort of wonder about folks. Do they like reacting to drama? I'm not discounting the seriousness of the flu or the Coronavirus, but seriously, do these people not have anything at home? I think most of us at SA buy when things are on sale and stock up. I know I do. Plus I did a lot of canning last summer and fall so I have things in reserve. I buy hand sanitizer when it is cheaper and usually keep one on hand simply because I'm like that. I'm certainly not going to run to the store and buy them out. Then Kroger put in their website that due to demand, only 5 cleaning items and cold and flu items per order. I wonder if that drove up demand at all.
Sometimes I think the fable about the grasshopper and the ant rings true yet again. Who wins? Probably the retailer.