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Ms. Hannigan
True Blue Farmgirl

57 Posts

Shari
Middle TN
USA
57 Posts

Posted - Sep 28 2014 :  8:56:15 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Well, I can't remember everything I did last week, but this coming week I plan to...

-Can the bushel of tomatoes (I'm thinking salsa!) I got with my bulk food order last week, and put up the 1/2 bushel of sweet potatoes I got as well. I hope t can some beets from the garden also.
-Start recycling some of my hubs old work uniforms into a crochet rag rug for our bedroom.
-Use the $.25 pillow, and the $.99 blanket I found at the thrift store last week to make a dog bed out of an old kitchen drawer hubs took out when he installed my dishwasher.
-rehang some old curtains in my bedroom to give it a mini makeover for fall.
-make some pumpkin decorations out of canning jar rings
-hang as many loads of laundry as possible outside to avoid the dryer.

I'm sure there's more, but I'll post that a different time I guess! Have a great frugal week ladies!

...some women are drippin' with diamonds... some women are drippin' with pearls... look at me, lucky me, the only thing I'm drippin' with is... little girls...
Farmgirl #1158
blog: www.gravelhillfarm.com
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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5188 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5188 Posts

Posted - Oct 02 2014 :  10:06:13 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Marie,
Great finds! I love scores like that. We have been freezing too mostly Kale and Broccoli from the garden. Squash isn't ready yet but when it is I will be roasting it first and then freezing.

Judy,
I'm glad that your family got a laugh It cracks me up every time I think about it :)
We haven't butchered any Large Blacks yet as we just started last year. We did have our cross Rosie butchered, we love our butcher but his cures are lacking. So when she was brought in we asked for the hams, hocks and bacon and we cured, brined and smoked them ourselves. With the fat I rendered some for lard and have some in the freezer to make sausage with. I was thinking Apple, Maple and Sage too! But I might add some cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper flakes :)

Here are a couple of pictures of Endeavour(our boar) and Trudy (our sow). We just love our LB's they are so sweet and docile.



Which Heritage breeds have you raised Judy? Inquiring minds want to know :)

Maple Syrup: I got the syrup from this gentleman:

http://lownfamilymaplesyrup.com/home

If you order any tell him Sharon from Colorado sent you :) We have been purchasing syrup from him for the past few years and his is wonderful!

Here is a link to the Green Tomato Mincemeat recipe. It is so good. My husband doesn't like mincemeat but enjoyed this. Mincemeat PIe is on the menu for Thanksgiving :) Oh and Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family Judy :)

http://www.food.com/recipe/green-tomato-mincemeat-3926

Shari,
Nice to meet you! It sounds like you have alot going on :) I am envious of you with your tomatoes and sweet potatoes. A couple of years ago I was able to purchase some sweet potatoes for .40 a pound. I cooked and froze most and then baked and dehydrated some pieces for dog treats, they loved them :) I really need to learn how to crochet. This year was my year for learning to quilt :)

This past week:

~A local campground was selling some picnic tables for $25.00. Not in perfect shape but for the money and a little elbow grease they will be nice.
~Making my own breads, etc.
~A friend blessed us with some ripe tomatoes. I want to make some Chili Sauce but need to take it easy this week (dr's orders, a mild concussion) so I froze them until I could get to them.
~Another friend blessed with a variety of winter squash which will make a nice addition to our meals.
~I think we may get a frost soon so I picked half of the green tomatoes and will chop and freeze them for future use.
~Each year the garden is a learning experience for me :) I found this chart to help me plan better for next year. That along with taking notes each year will help save me money.
http://www.granny-miller.com/a-garden-planner-for-home-food-preservation/
~The apple trees along the road are just about ready to harvest so my honey and I will be doing that soon and I want to try canning an Apple Barbecue Sauce :)
~I have been freezing Kale and Broccoli.
~I planted Red Orach this year and the seeds are ready to be saved. I am trying to do this with our garden to save money for next year.
~Planted some Broom Corn for the birds and for decorating so I picked some to display in an antique pitcher I have.
~Opened a brand new package of canning lids to find that one I could not use, it was bent in 2 places. I sent an e-mail to Ball/Kerr and they are sending me a coupon for a free box of lids. It pays to let companies know when something isn't up to par BUT I also let companies know when I am extremely pleased with their items too.
~I found 4 very nice placemats in a pretty Autumn Gold color for $2.00 at the Thrift Store.
~I use the water from blanching vegetables for the freezer to water our plants with.
~I made roasted Apple Sauce and saved the vanilla beans. I simply rinsed them and let them air dry. They will be added to our cast iron kettle on our woodstove for a nice simmering scent.

I can't think of anything else.

I hope everyone is enjoying Autumn!

Edited by - Calicogirl on Oct 02 2014 10:35:51 AM
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country treasure
True Blue Farmgirl

452 Posts

judy
SK
Canada
452 Posts

Posted - Oct 04 2014 :  8:00:40 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Ladies!
Sharon, nice touch with a bit of heat in the sausages, we'll give that a try next time. Your pigs are outstanding! Hubby's on the hunt for some....LOL. We've not raise anything as rare as yours but Bershire & Tamworths have been good for us.
Thanks for the Thanksgiving wishes. The harvest has been a loooong, cold, wet time so our Thanksgiving will include friends with a VERY lay back feel! I'm the turkey & pie lady & the rest is being cooked by the guys. Loving that!!!! As long as everyone is together that's what counts.
LOVE your idea with vanilla beans....will give that a try!

..swapped potatoes for small straw bales...they're handy in the barns
..tomatoes are slowly turning so using up more
..cleaned off 2 of the 3 gardens, ready to plough
..moving young trees to the shelter belt area
..bought 30% off ground pork & made stir fries & meatballs with it
..I've saved all the plastic fruit (blueberries etc)containers & stated decorating them for baking gifts during the holidays.......I THINK, not quite sure, Nini did that last year too.
..saving more flower seeds
..tying sunflower heads in the trees for the birds
Have a good day
Judy

ps...Sharon, what are you quilting? I can really get lost int eh sewing room quilting! LOL
Do you hand quilt?


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country treasure
True Blue Farmgirl

452 Posts

judy
SK
Canada
452 Posts

Posted - Oct 08 2014 :  6:38:18 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
HI Sharon,
Quick question......since you've used the mince meat do you think the 3c of sugar could be cut down without changing the taste too much? I try to cut down on sugar if possible.
STILL trying to get through all those green tomatoes.
Thanks Judy


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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5188 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5188 Posts

Posted - Oct 09 2014 :  04:16:13 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Judy :)

I would try cooking it with 1 cup first and slowly add if needed and continue to simmer. I haven't tasted it since canning so I'm not sure I remember :)

I posted some Green Tomato Recipes in the Farm Kitchen. I finally made a Green Tomato Pie and it came out so good! I wasn't sure how it would be but my mother (who lives with us) and my honey deemed it a Keeper :)

I have heard great things about Tamworths and Berkshires, are they pretty docile?
Here is a link that your husband might like:

http://largeblackhogassociation.org/

I love swapping and bartering, it's fun :)
We are almost done with our garden, I have some cole crops left and once those are done, the piggies can enjoy tilling for us :)
I am quilting a lap quilt and it is a Log Cabin pattern. I just finished piecing it (This is my first quilt ever) and on to stitching the top, batting and backing together. A friend from church is teaching me and I am so thankful :)

Farmgirl Sister #5392

By His Grace, For His Glory
~Sharon

http://amerryheartjournal.blogspot.com/
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country treasure
True Blue Farmgirl

452 Posts

judy
SK
Canada
452 Posts

Posted - Oct 15 2014 :  11:04:05 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Sharon!
All I can say is.......WOOOOOOOW! Your green tomato mince meat was a huge hit for our Thanksgiving meal! The guys polished off 6 pies! The hunters left for home today with 2 pies for a snack! I tried 1c of sugar but decided on 2 with a few more currants (just to use them up). Made extra pints for Christmas gifts. THANKS for sharing . Making the salsa tomorrow ...yummy. If it's as good as your mince meat recipe I don't think it's going to make into the Christmas hampers. LOL
Gosh, I had no idea about big Blacks....the website was good! I don't know on the whole if Berks or Tams are friendly but our pigs are just around us two so they're pretty quiet. I haven't heard of anything too bad. Hubby LOVES his pigs!!!!! LOL He scratches their backs with a big brush! Wait a minute......where's my back massage??????? LOL
I have to ask.....are you making your log cabin in the traditional way? Red centre in each square? My first quilt was Trip around the world. I had to miss the class that instructed how to put the squares together so I went ahead & sewed the whole top. Beaming from ear to earI proudly showed the class my work......the teacher then showed the class I had put the whole quilt together WRONG! OOOOOH well....I had a CRAZY Trip Around the World! LOL
Please show your quilt when you finish!

Here's what's going here:
..swapped old barn wood for more straw bales, the guy even has to haul them!
..bought a new winter coat on preseason sale
..planted lettuce for inside trays
..getting down to the last of the canning.....YIPPEE!!!!
..stored our onions...about 100#s this harvest
..cut out pjs for winter
..cut out dog baggies, used old blankets for batting
..found cheap spring bulbs on sale so they're in the ground
..planted more garlic.....not one head made it this year, too cold......is garlic expensive to plant where you are?? It's crazy here!
..borrowed more library books
..used up the last of some white paint we got at a farm auction....dirt cheap!

Soooooo sad Our deal buying a jersey fell through! After 5 months of phone calls back & forth the guy backed out of the deal! The truck & trailer were ready to go! Nothing like leaving it to the LAST moment! Plus we're left with a steer that was supposed to be swapped for the heifer. No reason why just....NO! We think he must have found a better deal for himself. It's a little maddening but the hunt for one is back on. Would love to have one before snow hits! Really miss our 4 girls, ALL that fresh milk!!!!!
Smiles Judy



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country treasure
True Blue Farmgirl

452 Posts

judy
SK
Canada
452 Posts

Posted - Oct 16 2014 :  6:36:21 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
HI,
..Found pineapple on sale & it's drying right now. The house smells sooo good!
..caught up the laundry....NICE!
..finishing up a pile of darning & mending, anything from socks, clothing to a quilt
..only 7 trees left to replant..yippee!
..Divided up sale ground pork & made burgers for the freezers
..a friend gave me thread & a bag of odds for the pillow case dresses. anything helps!
Have good one
Judy



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YellowRose
True Blue Farmgirl

4249 Posts

Sara
Paris TX
USA
4249 Posts

Posted - Oct 17 2014 :  07:05:25 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
drying 7 pkgs of marked down mushrooms

drying left over French bread in oven for bread crumbs

put new lining in sewing basket that I bought over 30 years ago at estate sale for no more than a $1 - funny how I can remember my finds from that long ago.



Sara
Walk in Peace - Live with Joy
FarmGirl Sister #6034 Aug 25, 2014
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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5188 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5188 Posts

Posted - Oct 17 2014 :  09:45:46 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Judy,

I am so glad that you liked the Mincemeat recipe, it is a keeper in our home now and I plan on making a mincemeat pie for our Thanksgiving. I am not much of a salsa person by my honey is and he loves it, hope you like it too!

I had to laugh at your husband brushing the hogs, we do that too. I love seeing them fall over on their side with delight :)

I love your crazy trip around the world :) I'm not making red centers in the squares, just using some fabric that I had and some that was shared. I call mine a Wonky Log Cabin because I see all of the mistakes I made. The gal teaching me asked me if I have ever seen a perfect Log Cabin, bless her heart :)

Sorry to hear about the jersey deal falling through. I wish that people were more considerate. I hope you can find a better place for her.

I love swapping and bartering too. I have been placing some items up on the barter board here and have also bartered my honey's soaps for things. What are dog baggies? Are they dog beds or quilts? I haven't tried planting garlic yet but I was just looking at some online because I really want to try planting. The price seems to be about $8-10.00 for 8 ounces so I don't know if that is expensive or not. I am getting down to our last bit of canning too. I want to try canning Cole Slaw (more pickled, not creamy) but after finding worms in our broccoli I'm not sure if I want to use our cabbage. I have a thing about worms, they just really turn me off big time.

I bet the pineapple smells wonderful, I need to try that too! Where do you find the time to do all that you do Judy? You are so busy!

Sara,

Isn't it funny what we can remember? I am the same way, can tell you what time of year, the weather and what I was wearing when I found something :) Good for you drying goodies! I bet the lining came out beautiful!

Well so far...

~I pulled all of the green tomatoes off the vine and have been keeping some in the shed to ripen while canning and freezing the green ones.
~I was able to can some Chili Sauce yesterday. I have been wanting to try this forever but have never had enough ripe tomatoes.
~I tried a copycat recipe for King's Hawaiian bread. It called for pineapple juice. The dough felt and smelled really nice but I was very disappointed in the bread itself. So, I cubed, dried and froze it for future use of Bread Pudding. I have a recipe for a coconut bread pudding and this I think will go perfect :)
~Re-use ziploc bags :)
~Finally got to organize and inventory our freezers, just in time too (my mom bought us half a cow)
~While going through the freezer I came upon some meat and vegetable scraps to make dog food with.
~Made some Gingerbread Dog Treats, they love them!
~My honey has been cutting dead trees down from our landlord's property (with his permission), today we will be working on that for more firewood. I think that we are going to have a very wet and cold winter. Saw the first caterpillar yesterday, the brown stripe was pretty wide, does anyone know what that means?
~Found a Hi-protein concentrate hog feed at the feed store so we are trying that. We won't need as much per meal. Our pigs are so spoiled, we mix their feed with water (sometimes whey or milk) so they have a cereal in the morning and evening along with foraging.
~One of the local nurseries has a clearance sale going on 75% off perennials, I am thinking about checking out what they have.
~I inquired about a custom made item from a gal on etsy and she can make it for alot less than I thought, thinking of my honey's birthday :)
~Was able to glean some alfalfa hay for our pigs and their shelter
~Went to the thrift store (surprise, surprise :)), they wanted to make room in their kitchen supply area so you could fill a box for $3.00 with small appliances, kitchen wares, etc. There wasn't much that I needed but I did get a Waffle Iron, some canning jars, and some cute napkin rings for $3.00. Now we can make waffles for the freezer :)

I think that's it :)

Thank you girls for sharing

Farmgirl Sister #5392

By His Grace, For His Glory
~Sharon

http://amerryheartjournal.blogspot.com/

Edited by - Calicogirl on Oct 17 2014 3:27:56 PM
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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5188 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5188 Posts

Posted - Oct 17 2014 :  10:03:25 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Oh almost forgot...

I discovered e-pantry. For $20.00 and change I was able to purchase Mrs. Meyers Laundry Detergent, countertop spray and dish soap including shipping. You can schedule monthly deliveries and choose whatever products you want and when to have them delivered. This works for us because we really love Mrs. Meyers detergent, it is concentrated so it last us a long time but there isn't anyone local that sells it (that we know of). I should be getting our first order today and am looking forward to trying the cranberry scented dish soap, it will make cleaning fun!

Here is a link to explain more:

https://www.epantry.com/referrer/28881/

Farmgirl Sister #5392

By His Grace, For His Glory
~Sharon

http://amerryheartjournal.blogspot.com/

Edited by - Calicogirl on Nov 15 2014 04:06:51 AM
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country treasure
True Blue Farmgirl

452 Posts

judy
SK
Canada
452 Posts

Posted - Oct 17 2014 :  7:00:40 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hey Ladies!
Everyone sounds like they're busy!
Sharon, we adopted a wiener dog years old & have never been able to find a coat that she doesn't slip out of or plainly doesn't fit her big chest so I make her dog baggies. Izzy HATES to be cold (or too hot....this girl likes it just right! LOL) so the dog baggies were sewed up. Actually Izzy gave me the idea since she was sooo scared when she first came (she had been beaten & burned badly) she would hide where ever she could! If you drop a shopping bag she would be inside in no time, curled up & shivering. The baggies look like mini sleeping bag that Izzy has room to move around in & with the bottom & sides sewed tight we know she can't fall out. She feels safe! Everyone always laughs when she pokes her head out! Everyone here knows Izzy....LOL....she's the ONLY dog that's allowed to come into the auction building.

OOOOH gross....I HATE broc & worms! No matter what we did we would have them. Have you tried soaking cut broc in salt water before processing? The worms die & will float in the water. Gives me willies just thinking about picking through it! LOL We used to powder with Rotenone (sp?) which is a natural product (comes from a flower) but we can't find it any more. It worked reasonable but you have to faithful with it.

You're paying a bit more than we are for garlic. Hubby looked up the invoice. We bought 6#s for about $100, shipping included. 2 yrs old we had a beautiful garlic crop of 10 different kinds so put in 15 kinds last fall & with the super cold spring NOT one came up. We get down to -40F or colder here with lots of wind..we're thinking you're not that cold??? We're a zone 2(at the best), you're a zone 4????? Just guessing???? plus we're surrounded by water which drops the temp during the growing season. We planted SIBERIAN garlic due to the cold. It's a good around garlic & the taste isn't too strong! Stores good! We order from VESSEY'S in PEI. Sharon, when do you plant garlic in your area. Ours has been in the ground for 2 weeks but honestly we were a wee bit late.

Yep, pigs & their milk feasts! LOL Their tails are held perfectly still while sucking it down! Too funny! Like the bread pudding idea.
We wanted to swap FOR the jersey when it fell through but making calls already. Cross your fingers!
Good deal on the waffle iron! I found a old one & when the eggs are piling up waffles go in the freezers. Fast suppers!
Sharon, try to find the book "Pickled Pantry" by Andrea Chesman.....has GREAT & different cole slaw recipes. Good book for some different types of pickling for a change!
What's in your chili sauce recipe? Sounds good!


Sara, you're always busy drying something! You've got me thinking about more things to dry. Thanks for sharing

Today was the day!!!!!!!!!!! Doing a major happy dance!!!!!! The canning supplies were put away & waiting for next season! It's always a shock to find the price of a bottle of something you produced for next to nothing! Plus the best part....you know what's in it & where it came form! Great feeling to have it all tucked away!
We're being told that food prices are going up 37% !!!! I buy by bulk as much as possible but that's even gone up!
Meat is insane to buy!!!! We have some lambs & pigs to butcher but that's when the temp drop more. THANK YOU above for a good season!
..gathering shoe box items up for the drive
..pricing out better butchering knives
..I grow fancy type sunflowers for florists so saved a lot of the seeds.....they're sooo expensive!
..going to a farm auction tomorrow....a day of catching up with friends!....plus NO work! YIPPEE!!!! Hoping to find some deals.
Have a good one!
Judy



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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5188 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5188 Posts

Posted - Oct 17 2014 :  11:08:26 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Okay Judy,

You need to have a blog! You do so many amazing things I would love to read about them more:)

The dog baggies for Izzy sound so cute! I bet she looks adorable with her head peaking out. Two of our dogs are rescue pups and are finally getting more comfortable here.

Sorry I misunderstood about the Jersey! I hope things work out for you.

I have soaked Broccoli in salt water and it does work. I was reading a blog and the gal made a screened cage for her kale, cabbage and broccoli to keep the moths away and it worked for her. So next year those rows are going to be covered up somehow :)

I have never grown garlic before so I'm not sure when the right time is. Our daytime temps right now are in the 60's to 70's and night time temps down to 32 at the lowest. We are in zone 5b but for the past couple of years it has been colder so I'm thinking that our zone may have changed.

When I make Cole Slaw (not for canning) I add apple slivers and sliced cucumbers and use white balsamic vinegar. Not sure how the acidity would be for canning but I did find this recipe to try:
http://chickensintheroad.com/farm-bell-recipes/coleslaw-to-can-or-freeze/

I will check on that book too, thank you!

The Chili Sauce recipe is in the Ball Blue Book and has tomatoes, red bell peppers, hot pepper, onions, vinegar, sugar and pickling spices. It is similar to Heinz Chili Sauce. You can add horseradish to make it a cocktail sauce.

Congratulations on the end of canning season Judy!!! I love knowing what is in those jars too!
I still want to can some soups, etc. for winter but as far as canning with garden produce, I am just about done.

What variety of Sunflowers do you grow? You must have a huge farm Judy, I would love to see some pics some day :) hint, hint :)

Have a wonderful day with your friends tomorrow and I hope you get some good finds :)

Farmgirl Sister #5392

By His Grace, For His Glory
~Sharon

http://amerryheartjournal.blogspot.com/

Edited by - Calicogirl on Oct 17 2014 11:10:36 PM
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country treasure
True Blue Farmgirl

452 Posts

judy
SK
Canada
452 Posts

Posted - Oct 21 2014 :  6:25:06 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi!
Time seems to fly by at this time of year!
Sharon, we choose any sunflowers that don't have a lot of pollen that will drop & stain table cloths or whatever. I'll look up some of the names. A garden just isn't a garden without flowers of any kind! Thanks for the kind words about starting a blog but honestly I'm NOT computer smart....NOT even kind of smart!!!!!!! plus day to day on this farm isn't living a thrilling, exciting life! Come visit any time tea pot is on!

Well, the weekend was a blast & such a needed break for us! It's a fun habit around here that anyone knows to bring a goodie for the pot luck supper & stay to relax. This time a bon fire was going & someone was playing music. It was great to catch up with friends! Sunday we went off to a cowboy gathering & story telling. WOOOOOW...talent! Some were sooo funny & yet some brought tears! The same lady has been making the chili for supper for years then we all take turns bringing buns & sweets. Monday was hard to face work again! LOL

..The auction was held on behalf of a older family friend so we knew that the items were very clean so it turn out to be perfect for us! I finally have a better stove which thrills me to death!!!!!! I looked up the make & saved a whooping $518.67 off of new price! It was only 6 months old!!!!
..Bought a 1 year old couch & love seat. Paid $200 for both. No pets or smoke either. Yippee!!!
Our stove, couch/chair will go into the next auction.....we've decided to donate the $ to the SPCA. The house looks like a furniture store until we can deliver these things!
a box of ribbons for ribbon dolls...$1....Julie sent me one & they're so cute!
..a 4 chair/table patio set. I was looking at this set early this fall but they were sold out when I arrived, lucky for me! I paid 1/3 of the sale price!
..a box of OLD wooden brackets that I want to make shelves with. $7.50
..antique lanterns for $1...I've got a cute Christmas idea to use them
..winter shovel for $3...they selling for $27
..house sprayer that we REALLY need, paid 40% of new...still had tags on it
..I collect white enamel pots for planters along the red shop wall so found 3 more..$1
..my best treasure was a All American 2 qt pressure canner!!!!!! I paid $30!!!! Be still my heart!!!! I've used the same brand canner for years but a qt size. I've collected 2 qt jars thinking that I'd love to make stews. I took a change on it with a gasket inside the lid cracked & the rocker gone but Monday I phoned the company & they will replace both parts! I can't believe the savings!!!!
Came home with a smaller wallet size but a HAPPY camper!

Can any one tell how much a new case (12) of half pts, pints & qts are down your way please? Jars have really gone up here! I rarely buy new ones but the half pts are hard to find used.
Hugs Judy




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country treasure
True Blue Farmgirl

452 Posts

judy
SK
Canada
452 Posts

Posted - Oct 23 2014 :  4:43:06 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Saved money on meat by butchering a steer this morning. We end the animal's life in the most humane way, out in the pasture. No stress from hauling it somewhere. Hanging in the freezer for 2 weeks then will wrap while the butcher cuts. Swapped 2 pigs for his services but we get the back bacon. Yippee!
The rest of the day has been a WORK OUT.......started with 10 cords of wood to stack in the wood shed but now only 4 to go!!!!!!! We'll be saving $ during the winter on house fuel. Love the feel of wood heat plus the smell outside!!!

......Just wondering if anyone is still out there interested in this subject or am I talking to myself??????? LOL
Hugs Judy

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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5188 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5188 Posts

Posted - Oct 28 2014 :  09:10:28 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hey girls :)

Judy, you're not talking to yourself :)
Your weekend sounds just perfect! Isn't it nice to just relax with friends?
Great deals at the auction! You go girl! I have heard wonderful things about the All-American Canner. I have a Presto one, still in the box. Michael is going to help me can with it this winter :) I can't believe how much wood you got done in one day, you must have been hurting. I love the smell of woodsmoke too.
Canning Jars around here are going for about $9.00 a dozen for half-pints and up from there. I have been blessed with folks giving me jars and bartering for some too. I plan on purchasing lids everytime I go to the store to stock up for next year. Bacon...mmmmmm :)

Well, let's wee, what has been going on here...

~Making my own bread (as usual). Last week I made some Saffron & Raisin Bread and I've got French Bread rising now.
~We found a local source for heritage turkeys (processed) the price is a bit more, but we are trying to be more cautious with what we eat and after having grass-fed beef, home raised pork and home raised chicken, it would be hard to go back :) I remember Nini's post last year about actually getting more meat than regular store bought birds so we are giving it a go :)
~Finished harvesting the garden and the pigs are now tilling it, which saves us money on feed :)
~I am roasting and freezing the Blue Hubbard Squash.
~I bartered with another farmgal, some books for sorghum molasses and am now hooked :)
~My mom bought Michael and I a couple of Cochinos (Mexican Gingerbread Pig Cookies). They were 50 cents each. I found a recipe and will be making some today with the above mentioned molasses and I'm sure I will be saving money on the cookies :)
~Harvested more sage to bundle and hang for fire starters.
~At the local milling company we can get wheat hulls for free. We had heard about people feeding them to their pigs but ours didn't like them so much. I poured them in the garden and figured that they can ammend the soil. Well, the pigs decided to eat them. We will be checking the milling company more often.
~A neighbor has an orchard with some Heirloom apples. Michael asked if we could pick up the apples on the ground for the pigs. He said that he and his wife would be picking a couple hundred gallons of apples this week and whatever was left we could pick (he said that there was about 500 gallons). I can't wait :) There may just be more canning in the future :)
~We sold the last of the boars from our litter. Luigi :) He (to us) is the perfect breeding boar (5 months old, large for his size and a real sweetheart). This works out great because it is a Boar AI (sorry) company out of Iowa that purchased him so he will be producing stock :) And we will spending a little less on feed with one pig gone :)
~We have an order for one of our pigs for the end of December, this is exciting to us because it is our first time :) We also have someone who will be purchasing a half in March.
~Found out that with Michael's VA disability he is entitled to free registration on our vehicle, this helps so much!

I can't thing of anything else, I need to organize the pantry now and take stock of what I need for this winter.

Have a great day everyone!


Farmgirl Sister #5392

By His Grace, For His Glory
~Sharon

http://amerryheartjournal.blogspot.com/

Edited by - Calicogirl on Oct 28 2014 09:15:34 AM
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ceejay48
Farmgirl Legend/Schoolmarm/Sharpshooter

13311 Posts

CeeJay (CJ)
Dolores Colorado
USA
13311 Posts

Posted - Oct 28 2014 :  11:35:59 AM  Show Profile  Send ceejay48 a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
I find it amazing that butter at the grocery store is $4.00/pound!
Well, I get raw milk from a neighbor for $6.00 per gallon, make butter and yogurt every week . . . saving bunches on both! We don't drink much milk but we do consume butter and yogurt so it's nice to have FRESH milk to make it!
CJ

..from the barefoot farmgirl in SW Colorado...sister chick #665.
2010 Farmgirl Sister of the Year
Mother Hen: FARMGIRLS SOUTHWEST HENHOUSE

my aprons - http://www.facebook.com/FarmFreshAprons

living life - www.snippetscja.blogspot.com

from my heart - www.fromacelticheart.blogspot.com

from my hubby - www.aspenforge.blogspot.com
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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5188 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5188 Posts

Posted - Nov 15 2014 :  04:38:14 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Raw milk is SO GOOD CJ! It blows my mind that a gallon of gas/diesel is less than a pound of butter. I need to start making some more with the cream.

The past couple of weeks have been busy.

~We gleaned apples from a neighbor's orchard and got about 400 pounds for the pigs and about a hundred for us, so...
~I canned and froze: Raspberry Apple Sauce, Regular Apple Sauce, Apple Ginger Juice and dried some Apple Slices for the pantry. We also have some peels, cores in a bucket hoping to turn into Apple Cider Vinegar:)
~I was trying to figure out what I could use to can the large amounts of apple sauce and apple juice. I wanted the recipes to be uniform in flavor instead of having a couple of different batches. I was actually considering purchasing a very large pot when I remembered that I had a roaster in storage. I pulled that out, cleaned it and it worked great!
~I also made some apple, walnut and raising cookie dough, rolled into balls and flash froze so we could have some on hand if needed or when the mood strikes.
~I saved some scraps (no cores) and made applesauce to make dog treats with.
~The apples for the pigs saved us money on feed and made for some very happy piggies :) They also got most of the scraps.
~Baked my own breads and rolls.
~Re-used ziploc bags again :)
~Went to the thrift store and found: a cashmere sweater, Eddie Bauer Blouse, and a Coldwater Creek top for .50 cents each. I also found some really neat vintage trims, cowhide gloves,wool roving in charcoal grey for crafting and spent $3.00 total on those items.
~Saved seeds from our Blue Hubbard Squash and Red Orach. If anyone would like some let me know, we have alot!
~ We weren't able to get the heritage turkeys for Thanksgiving so we just ended up purchasing store bought for .69 a pound. I also found some whole chickens for .88 cents a pound, which is cheap around here.
~Finished my quilt! Just in time for my Mom's Birthday. It made her cry, I had no idea that she would react that way and no it wasn't because it is wonky ;) I am so glad that I spent the time to make it and all the seam ripping that went on was so worth it :)Okay maybe not so thrifty but I did use fabric I had and made the gift :)
~A friend has a lawn care company and she is going to be dropping off her leaves from clean-up jobs for our garden. Between that, compost and the piggies we should have some great soil next year :)
~Sugar prices dropped a little here so I am going to stock up on some as well as stocking up on flour before prices rise again.
~ Got a free subscription to a couple of magazines: Family Fun for a friend and Family Circle for my Mom, I also found a $6.00 subscription to Food Network magazine also for my Mom.
~Made some homemade Bouillon cubes for the freezer. These worked great and when I have more time I am going to cook down the stocks that I have in the freezer and make more room there.


That's all that I can think of. I hope that everyone is having a productive week :)




Farmgirl Sister #5392

By His Grace, For His Glory
~Sharon

http://amerryheartjournal.blogspot.com/

Edited by - Calicogirl on Nov 15 2014 04:38:53 AM
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YellowRose
True Blue Farmgirl

4249 Posts

Sara
Paris TX
USA
4249 Posts

Posted - Nov 15 2014 :  05:36:11 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Most of my savings this week came from the grocery store.
$7 plus some change off total bill for using my Bonus Points

5 pkgs smoked ham hock in 50% off marked-down bin - shared with sisters

2 pkgs soup bones in 50% off marked-down bin

6 30' parchment paper for .99 each - store is changing over to store name packaging

2 whole chickens for .79lb - made bouillon, cornbread dressing with broth, next several days I will be using chicken in a lot of different ways & recipes. At that price Maggie, my little rat terrier, gets her share too.

I didn't do it this week, but Sharon's post reminded me that I had used MaryJanesFarm Magazine offer to buy one subscription - get one free - to give my three sisters subscriptions and to renew mine own. 4 subscriptions for the price of 2 is quite a bargain.


Sara
Walk in Peace - Live with Joy
FarmGirl Sister #6034 Aug 25, 2014
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Ninibini
True Blue Farmgirl

7005 Posts

Nini
Pennsylvania
USA
7005 Posts

Posted - Nov 15 2014 :  08:02:42 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi girls!

Just dropping by to see what you all have been up to... Impressed as always!

This week, I made and canned chicken stock! I had a few gallon-sized freezer bags full of our CLEAN veggie scraps (peels, end pieces, etc. of carrots, celery, beets, onions, garlic, etc.) waiting to be used up, as well as a couple of bags containing chicken bones and scraps from previously roasted birds. Using soup socks (from Lehmans - SO awesome!) to contain everything, I divided everything between two large crock pots, added a little salt and let the magic happen. After the stock was done, I let it reduce a bit so it would be more concentrated. When all was said and done, I had canned six quarts of super hearty stock for soup (I have leftover chicken meat in the freezer and canned chicken on the shelves, and will add dehydrated veggies and rice or noodles as the mood strikes) and five pints for use in other recipes. Super satisfying!

I also spent the past few weeks making an awesome mini scrapbook for my Mom for her retirement. It was such an honor and privilege to have her company entrust me to the task. A true work of the heart, I thoroughly enjoyed getting to "know" her co-workers through all the pictures. The book was chock-full of memories of her and her friends and co-workers from the last 31 years of her life! I quickly came to understand why her decision to retire had been so tough and put off for so long - these people were like family! SO much laughter and so many wonderful moments they have shared! (And boy, did they eat well! LOL! Looks like they had a party for just about every life celebration you could think of! LOL!) I digress... Sorry... I did buy some special paper for the project to coordinate with her company's colors, but I was also able to use up quite a bit of my own paper and embellishment stash, which saved an incredible amount of money. I cut the papers in all sorts of shapes and sizes for the scrapbook's pages to add interest, then spiral-bound the whole thing with my Cinch. Let me just say, I love my Cinch. If you're a scrapbooker or like to make calendars, if you don't have one, but can get your hands on one, or go in with friends to buy one, oh my goodness, you will love what it can do! It saved me quite a bit of money not having to buy a scrapbook, and the cool thing is that I was able to add as many pages as I wanted and design the book to suit my creative desires. I didn't have to buy an expensive bound book, or extra expensive page inserts or limit myself to the number of pages in those expensive pre-made board books available at the craft store. I made exactly what I needed, exactly how I wanted it, and saved a bundle. I was able to include several pockets and flip-pages soas to include pictures of the whole gang, which was really exciting. The ladies where she worked had sent me a huge packet of pictures and told me to just have at it - they never expected that I would be able to include everyone! They were thrilled! :) Needless to say, when all was said and done, I had spent only a small amount of money for a personalized, fancy, artsy scrapbook that would've cost me (them) a few hundred dollars to have professionally made. And it was beautiful. Everything flowed perfectly from page to page. I can't take the credit for that, though. I prayed when considering every picture and embellishment, especially when I was two-thirds of the way through and completely out of inspiration. ;) The result was God's beautiful work of love through my praying hands, for sure! I really wanted to take pictures, but was down to the wire and had to overnight it to the company before I had the chance. Maybe I'll have opportunity to take some pics for you when we get together again next spring. :)

I've done all my Christmas shopping, too. I didn't buy a lot this year - I don't have to! I've taken up knitting again, so I'm making super-soft, warm wool scarves for the men in my life; I'm making special paper-crafted gifts for the women in my life (personalized clipboards, calendars which can be transformed to a year-long memory book, etc.) using items already on my crafting shelves; and I have saved plastic containers to decorate for home-baked goods for everyone (I'll add Victorian Christmas ephemera printed from my computer and embellish so they look all fancy and old-fashioned - super popular!). Jars of pickles and preserves will also be given. The gifts for the kids in our life were super easy to choose; the few things I purchased were bought on sale long before the holiday "sales" started to be advertised. <I really want to share that the "sales" that are going on right now, really don't seem to be sales at all... It's more like prices were jacked up before the holiday selling season and then marked down to lure buyers. Perhaps that won't be the case on Black Friday, but I would rather enjoy my holiday season rather than fight the crowds. To me, that's worth paying a little more in the summer, if that's even the case! ;)> I also plan to make little paper-crafted stockings for them, filled with homemade treats made especially to their liking. Our son's gift was a special purchase obtained through a special lottery-type sale from his favorite online store. He will be receiving a rather expensive brand-new dream gift with accessories, purchased for less than half the original cost! And for my hubby, who spends most of his spare time working on his elaborate train set in the winter, I found a great set of small tools, a tiny vice to hold his projects while he's working on them, and a set of lighted, magnifying glasses for a fraction of their regular cost online. He's going to be thrilled. All in all, I've spent considerably less than $200 on everyone/everything, which is absolutely amazing to me. (I've come far, sisters - believe me - thanks to all of YOU!!! God bless you!) Other than baking, which will be done just before the holiday, I am all done. The pressure is off. Now I can concentrate on decorating, writing out cards, and enjoying celebrating the season with the people I love. Pretty awesome stuff!

Oh! And the really cool thing I wanted to share is that all my canning and preserving efforts this past summer has REALLY paid off. So far, we have made very few trips to the grocery store, primarily for milk, eggs and sour cream. It's such a blessing to go to my pantry shelves and freezer and just pull down whatever we need. Everything was either home-grown or purchased in bulk at a great price then frozen, canned or dehydrated and vacuum-sealed for winter use. I am especially happy that I spent all the time I did to pre-make foods such as meatballs and meatloaf. At the end of a busy day, it's so great to just pull them out of the freezer and pop them in the oven. With some pasta, rice or potatoes and veggies from the pantry, dinner is ready in no time with very little effort! And the canned meats make quick dinners a breeze. If I'm running late, it doesn't really matter. All I have to do is open a jar of ground beef, pork or chicken, doctor it up with some seasoning, heat it up and voila, dinner is done in a matter of minutes! I'm really liking this. And what is really amazing is that we have so little trash to take out to the street at the end of the week! I love being able to recycle my jars! Further, making my own cleaning products this year has also really saved me money AND packaging waste! All of this is really motivating me to plan even bigger and better things for next year! I'm saving my unused monthly grocery budget towards purchasing a quarter cow (maybe a half!), another pig, and chicken as needed; I've started working on my garden plan strategy for next spring to get even more bang from my garden space; and I'm seeking to learn how to make more products from scratch - spice mixes, specialty items, baking powder, hair care products and soap maybe, etc. Finally, next summer when school is OVER (My son graduates in May! YES!), I'm going to finally break out the sewing machine and re-learn how to make clothing and home goods. Slow but steady definitely wins the race! And it's so much fun watching all the can-do savings unfold! :)

Well, that's all for now. Stay inspired, girls! Stay inspired!

Hugs -

Nini

Farmgirl Sister #1974

God gave us two hands... one to help ourselves, and one to help others!


Edited by - Ninibini on Nov 15 2014 08:50:33 AM
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Daizy
True Blue Farmgirl

930 Posts

Daizy
Talladega Alabama
USA
930 Posts

Posted - Nov 15 2014 :  08:29:22 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Breathy taking....all of you!!!

Hugs and prayers, Daizy #1093
Poor House Farmgirl Chapter {A virtual chapter open to everyone.}
A good day is when you find ALL your ear tags! I wonder how my cows would like my Farmgirl apron??
www.poorhouseparadise.blogspot.com
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Ninibini
True Blue Farmgirl

7005 Posts

Nini
Pennsylvania
USA
7005 Posts

Posted - Nov 17 2014 :  09:04:12 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
:) Daizy! You're a peach!

Neat little tidbit girls: Last week I learned that you can actually use your potato water from your HOME CANNED potatoes (not store bought because it contains additives or something) to make your bread! The starch in the water from the potatoes actually enhances the rising action of the yeast (they love it!), and the bread comes out beautifully risen and yummy. I haven't noticed any type of potato flavor, but the bread is scrumpdillicious! :) Basically, you drain the potatoes, reserving the canning water. Add regular water to increase it to the amount needed for your favorite bread recipe. Super simple! And talk about "using it up" to the last drop! Nothing from your potato jar goes to waste - except perhaps the lid; but even that you can clean up and use for crafts! Think: coasters, Christmas ornaments, pennant swags, etc. With a little bit of colorful scrapbooking paper, some ephemera and embellishments to suit your tastes or holiday, and maybe some felt backing if you're making coasters, you'll have quite a nifty little gift project going on!

Hugs -

Nini

Farmgirl Sister #1974

God gave us two hands... one to help ourselves, and one to help others!

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hudsonsinaf
True Blue Farmgirl

3090 Posts

Shannon
Rozet Wyoming
USA
3090 Posts

Posted - Nov 17 2014 :  09:46:39 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I do not have time today to read through all of these pages, but you ladies are incredibly inspiring! I WILL be reading all of these, and gleaning from your wisdom!

Nini - I LOVE the idea of re-using the canning lids! I am thinking I NEED to try making said ornaments! I have been really upset lately throwing them all away!

~ Shannon

http://hudson-everydayblessings.blogspot.com/
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Ninibini
True Blue Farmgirl

7005 Posts

Nini
Pennsylvania
USA
7005 Posts

Posted - Nov 17 2014 :  12:08:19 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Shannon - SO glad you've been inspired! :)

You can also re-use them with items that you're dry storing in canning jars, like nuts, sugar, etc. And as long as they aren't too warped or damaged from opening the canned items, you can even re-use them to vacuum-seal the dry goods in canning jars (Just be sure you mark them somehow so you don't mistakenly try to re-use them for water-bath or pressure canning!). The only thing is you have to be super careful to clean them. If they have any type of lingering smell, say from something like sauerkraut or hot peppers, I wouldn't reuse them because that smell can transfer to the dry goods. I have had some success with washing them well and letting them "soak" in food-grade diatomaceous earth for a few days, but some smells you just can't get remove. THOSE lids can be saved for the garden - you can punch a hole in them and hang them from string, then tie the string on tomato stakes so they sway in the wind and scare the birds away! OR you could hot glue them to sticks and decorate them as plant row markers. You get the idea. There's lots you can do with them, really. I remember when I was in high school, I went to a church bazaar and one lady had punched holes all around the edges and then crocheted the lids together to form placemats. I might not use them on the dinner table, but they might be nice for using under plants. I'd venture to guess they wouldn't make good hot pads, though, because they would transfer the heat from the pot to the table underneath and cause damage. Maybe they could be crocheted together to make reusable grocery bags or something??? I don't know...that's way out of my area of creativity! LOL! I'll stick to paper and glue, thank you! :)

Also - if you have a lot of craft ribbon spools, you can re-use them to make ornaments, just as you would the canning jar lids. In the past, I have covered the two flat sides of the spools with Victorian Christmas or Easter or Valentine ephemera, embellished with tiny flowers, beads, glitter, sheer ribbon, buttons, etc., then glued a ruffle around the outside edges. Finally, I'd glue a long piece of ribbon around the spool part, tying it into a loop for hanging. They were pretty neat. For Christmas, it would be really cool to make them into Jesse Tree ornaments or into a Twelve Days of Christmas or Nativity Story theme. :)

Happy creating!

Hugs -

Nini

Farmgirl Sister #1974

God gave us two hands... one to help ourselves, and one to help others!


Edited by - Ninibini on Nov 17 2014 12:10:22 PM
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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5188 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5188 Posts

Posted - Nov 19 2014 :  08:51:41 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sara, great deals! I love saving on my grocery bill, it's such a feeling of accomplishment. I'm glad that you like the bouillon recipe, I am so grateful I found it :)

Nini, Wow! You have accomplished so much. I bet that your Mom absolutely loved the scrapbook, she will treasure it forever. I am not a scrapbooker or card maker but on occasion I do. I look around the home first to see if I have any supplies, ribbons, embellishments, etc. before resorting to spend. I save ribbon and always have since I was a little girl :) Love ribbon!

I can't believe you have Christmas finished (and on top of your preserving extravaganza!). That is awesome! I would much rather have a homemade gift than store bought, so much love poured into it. I'm still working on Christmas, it seems like time has gone by too fast this year. I need to try your tip on the Diatomaceous Earth, I would love to recycle some lids but don't care for that pickle scent :)

Shannon, thanks for popping by!!! I have learned so much on this thread and hope you do too!


Farmgirl Sister #5392

By His Grace, For His Glory
~Sharon

http://amerryheartjournal.blogspot.com/
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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5188 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5188 Posts

Posted - Nov 19 2014 :  08:54:11 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I had to look up what a Cinch was. Out here in the west it is something used for horses or a western clothing brand :) I was able to find a binder similar at a thrift store for 3 dollars. I only wish that it would bind with wire instead of the plastic combs.

Farmgirl Sister #5392

By His Grace, For His Glory
~Sharon

http://amerryheartjournal.blogspot.com/
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