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This was the strangest week our family has experienced since the pandemic started back in late winter. It felt like a hard week with many obstacles piling up, but we just kept trying to keep our eyes focused on what’s really important – Jesus, family & loving others – and we’ve made it through with our joy still intact! I call that a successful week no matter how hard it was 🙂
Here’s a rundown on what’s been happening around here and some of the fun & frugal goings on, too!
Around the House
We were blessed with another box of food, some of which we shared with others and a few canned items were placed in the local tiny food pantry shed. I noticed the last time we dropped off food that someone had put very nice clothing in there so I also left a brand new pair of shoes I was gifted that didn’t fit me.
My mom also gifted us with some extra food including several large onions so I once again sliced and dehydrated onions. I now have two full jars of dried onions in the pantry.
Next in the dehydrator will be apples that need to be used up, so I will get the dehydrator trays cleaned up this morning and get those sliced and put in. This week will be daily use of the dehydrator as I got several herbs I was running low on ordered from the local organic farm so will be drying those to get stored in the spice pantry.
Besides the ongoing management of food resources so nothing goes to waste and helping with school for our homeschooling 9th grader, my other fun for the week was diving back into offering Pinterest VA (virtual assistant) services. Before I took time off with the health issues related to the MS, I had a VA business and part of my services was Pinterest management for blogs and businesses. I’m considering jumping back into it so am revisiting the information.
(If you’re interested in getting started with VA services or Pinterest VA specifically, I’m getting a blog post written that I’ll have up soon with more information. In the meantime, if you’d like to see what training class I did when I wanted to specialize in Pinterest VA services, you can check out the free workshop here!}
In the Garden
With the lovely weather we’ve been having, I spent some time in my small garden getting it cleaned up before the winter weather arrives. Some of the plants went to the pig and the rest to the compost bin, which is really filling up. I hope to be able to use that compost in the spring garden.
I was pleasantly surprised to find several baby squash, both yellow and patty pan, when I pulled the squash plants out. They’re so cute! And I will enjoy eating them. It was a little garden bonus for fall.
I planted one more small container of garlic and that was the end of the garden for this season. Maybe next year I will be more experienced and brave enough to extend the fall gardening season longer!
Budgeting & Finances
I again used the cash back apps Ibotta, Fetch Rewards, ReceiptPal and Swagbucks. Ibotta is ready to cash out just over $20 and Swagbucks will be available for $25 very soon. I’ll be adding both to my Amazon gift card balance for Christmas shopping.
Another small amount of $2.50 was added to my Amazon gift card balance this week by doing a very short (less than 2 minutes) survey. This is a cell phone survey I get every other month or so and originally was able to join through Swagbucks. Another little perk of doing Swagbucks surveys is sometimes you get offered an extra like getting additional surveys with rewards from a company whose survey you completed in Swagbucks. As long as it doesn’t take up hardly any time, I usually complete them and then add the rewards money straight to my Amazon gift card balance.
After contacting the company, I was finally able to get a refund on a textbook we had purchased for our daughter’s math class. The listing did not show in the photo or description that it was the teacher’s edition so I was very surprised when we got it! At first they did not want to offer a refund because they had the correct ISBN showing on the listing, but after asking several times (nicely!), they finally relented. That was a refund of $42.40 and the replacement book we found on Ebay was less than $13 so we came out ahead in the end.
My husband has been working on making a beautiful headboard that we hope to sell very soon. He is so creative and was able to use a metal coat rack along with old barn wood to make a photo frame gift designed by a friend.
Now the leftover pieces, along with cedar wood that came from the downed trees on our property, are being used to make a queen-sized headboard. We are on a mission to create many homemade and handmade items to sell and bless others with!
That’s what we’ve been doing to make life cozy, fun and frugal during this time! Now tell me what fun and frugal things you’ve been doing lately!