Saturday, January 8, 2011

Makin stuff and savin money....

Is it just me or have grocery prices been outta control on some stuff?!  Even generic butter is $3.00.  I used to spend $30-$60 a week but lately it has been more like $70 or $80.  It is easier to lower bills in the summer when we have so much produce, but I still need to try and keep it around $50.  There are some things I want to try.  I spend too much during the week on things I don't need, so I started taking out $100 at the beginning of the week.  If I spend $50 on groceries, and maybe $20 or $30 on odds and ends (like the new mouse I needed for the computer today) that will give us a little extra spending money and a little left over for the savings.  I have been using a lot of dry beans lately.  We also started baking our own bread again.

I also made some carrot muffins from a recipe I found in Backwoods Home magazine, that contains 4 cups of carrots!  It is such a cheap and healthy recipe!  Some things at the store have been good, or even great priced so I have been trying to buy those.  I started this week by planning meals based on what we have, then read the ads so I could plan the rest by what was on sale.  Carrots were 3 lbs for $1!! (hence the carrot muffins ;) ).  I also found a great recipe for homemade ranch dressing on The Family Homestead.  It is soooo good and pretty cheap to make.  I figured a pint jar costs about .80.  I have heard that dressings are one of the worst things you can buy (due to preservatives, chemicals and what not), which I don't know much about it, but I figure if something has more then 20 ingredients (especially a condiment!), it is probably best to stay away from it!  If you haven't checked out The Family Homestead before I highly recommend it.  She is a mother of 8 and has amazing tips and recipes for the frugal homemaker. 

In other news, we ordered our seeds.  We got our first batch from the first company yesterday.  Eek!  I am always shocked to see all of those packets.  Did I order all of those?!  Lol!  We saved a lot of seeds but still needed to buy a lot to.  We just don't have the room to space plants out enough to save seeds.  I have been obsessed with reading all of the seed catalogs and can't wait to start planting again.  I am thinking about trying to grow some lettuce in unheated cold frames.  I am going to give it a shot when the ground thaws a bit.  I even started some basil, cilantro, and oregano on the shelves we have in the basement.  I also sprouted some seeds in this neat little sprouter my mom got me.  I would show you the picture I uploaded but blogger uploader isn't working again.  Pretty basic system, but there are a lot of ways to sprout with household stuff.  Here is a site about sprouting lentils.  I get mine from the store, which some people say you can't do because they are processed and won't sprout but i don't have a problem.  Plus I don't want to pay $4.00 for a 1/2 a pound like some places charge ;).  I am hoping that next year I will can enough stuff, and store enough veggies in the cellar, that our grocery bill will be even less. 


  1. Hello! Thanks for sharing your tips, tricks and recipes, they're all so interesting. I've always wanted to grow plants for my own use, bur sadly I have no space. (although I have had tomatoes sprout up where I throw the cuttings out in my kitchen patio).
    Best wishes for a fruitful year!

  2. Thank you and so glad you enjoy it! Please check back as I will be adding more frugal recipes I have been trying :)

  3. Good work on making your own foods & thanks for posting the link to The Family Homestead. I found a similar carrot muffin recipe in MOther Earth news that has become our favorite, the only difference I see is that it also has apple. Looking forward to more of your frugal recipes.