I’ve needed to post.
So here it is.
In photographic form…
A taste of the last six months.
Yeah for summer!
What have you been up to?
This gallery contains 35 photos.
I love it. Without it, where would we be? Enjoy the day!
I’m all about saving money, not spending money or simply utilizing what I have.
Though, of course, money is a necessity for a lot of useful things, like new eyeglasses, and even sometimes those not so ‘needed’ things…like chocolate or match box cars…but today I’d like to share five ways I saved money this week…in some cases, even made money;
1. Brought my coffee from home instead of buying take-out.
2. Packed my lunch (and Finns) at home, including beverages (water in re-usable glass jars), and snacks.
3. Purchased a down winter jacket (Adidas) from a local consignment shop (a steal at $15!).
4. Collected $25 from the children’s consignment shop I consign with (this is where I made money).
5. Borrowed books and movies from our local library.
The only money I spent was $15 for the down jacket. I have to post a photo of it – I love it!
Now I know most of you probably already do a lot of these things, so this is really a friendly reminder…
There has been much talk about preparing food at home, packing lunches, investing in travel coffee mugs, etc…but with the holiday season upon us and time always moving faster and faster, why not be reminded of these little ways to save money and hassle.
Why not shop at a consignment shop? Why not check out books from your local library? Why wouldn’t you consign your good unwanted items? Making lunch at home requires a bit of fore thought, but not that much…really.
Saving money means doing more of what you want to do…whatever that may be.
What little things do you do to save money?
Time is something which can pass s-l-o-w-l-y, like when your waiting in line at the DMV (department of motor vehicles) or fast, like when your on holiday and suddenly (or so it seems) it’s time to get back on the plane…and return to ‘reality’…
Though the past few months (or should I say years?), lightening speed, is a more accurate descriptive for how I feel time passing…how can it be November 18th, 2013 – already? What?
It seems the (now) routine of school, work, play, cooking, dishes, running errands, grocery shopping, paying bills, preparing for winter (or whatever season is upon us), returning phone calls and emails, keeping up with the business, planning for holidays, birthdays, writing, making time for fun…creates the feeling that time is always winning – that there is never ‘enough’… time.
They (who are they anyway?) say when you get ‘older’ time ‘speeds up’ and when you have children you see time passing before your eyes. Children are the physical form of time passing. They are newborns, then babies, then toddlers, then pre-schoolers…there is no denying the passage of time once one has a child – the months fly by as do the years and your child is the daily reminder of this.
Granted one does not need to have a child to realize life is short.
The question for me now is how to juggle doing what I want to do (without feeling guilty) with what I need to do…
I enjoy doing so many things, though time doesn’t always allow…
I need to do so many things, though time doesn’t always allow…
I want to do so many things, yet time doesn’t always allow…
I hope to do so many more things, will time allow?
I recently came across this quote from Marty Rubin,
“Time does not pass, it continues”
So, I’ve decided to try and see life as always continuing and growing (despite feeling like I’m always trying to ‘catch-up’) versus never having enough time…trusting there is (and will be) enough time…simply trying to stay in the present (not always easy)…
Enjoying the moments when time seems to ‘stand still…’
How do you make time for the things you love and the things you must do?
When does time stand still for you?
Share your thoughts in the comments please…
A lot of people do it.
And, unfortunately, a lot of people, don’t. Why one wouldn’t is beyond me…
Anyway, I am someone who does. I love recycling, repurposing and general re-use of good quality items. Why not right?
My town has a brilliant concept – it’s called a swap trailer. It’s a place where townspeople can drop off unwanted but good items, for another townsperson to take home and use. Brilliant.
The photos you see above are some the recent finds I’ve scored over the past few months…to see more treasures, go here.
The swap trailer is conveniently located at our local transfer station…so people can drop off their recycling (cardboard, cans, bottles, etc.) their trash as well as their unwanted stuff.
I love our swap trailer (aka freebie barn). I have found some great things over the years, so much so that the NYTimes took notice…it’s still surreal that my house was in the NYTimes…
Regardless of who takes notice or not, it’s a resource which is beneficial for people of all income brackets as well as the planet. Simple. Brilliant. Fun.
Try starting a swap shop of sorts in your town…you just never know what you may find!
Have you ever done it?
I hadn’t until last week.
I was given three beautiful home grown (thank you Mim) heads of garlic and decided this was the year I would experiment with growing garlic…we enjoyed one head and used these two for planting…
So I asked a few gardener friends of mine if they had ever grown garlic and most had…all agreed it had to be the simplest bulb to grow.
Finn and I broke apart each bulb and then headed out to the garden…
It was a beautiful day. The mosquitos were quiet, the sun was warm and the ocean could be heard…
It’s so simple – if, of course you already have a garden or area to plant in…
Make little holes. We went about 2 inches apart. 2 – 3 inches deep.
Pop a clove in.
Water (not shown). Finn moved right along to picking carrots…but you can see the completed row of garlic behind him…
Mulch garlic bed well for winter (still have to do). Wait for spring…
So, have you ever planted garlic?
I was going to write about Finn’s first day of school (pre-school, that is), which was two days ago…or about the fact that I am now (and have been since early May) working, at night (to supplement our income) as a server (aka, waitress) at a super fun restaurant, with great people – but it’s still waitressing…in addition to keeping up with the house, the laundry, our business, the dishes…phew.
Days are long and the nights are late…mornings now begin only a few hours (or so it feels) after I’ve (finally) fallen asleep…oh the conundrum of working (or not working) as a mom.
But instead of sharing more about my busy life (I’m sure you can relate!), I decided to talk about the little luxuries growing throughout my garden and surrounding my home – my flowers. Flowers I started from seed months ago or planted as bulbs, years ago…
They are simply spectacular right now. And all that beauty cost me next to nothing to start – granted there is a time investment, but it’s oh so worth it!
It makes me so happy when I look out my windows or pull into my driveway and see a variety of colorful petals and leaves looking back at me…especially when the hummingbirds are humming about…do you see them, there are two!
Morning glories, sunflowers, nasturtiums, lilies, beach roses, delphiniums, dahlias, poppies – all started for a few dollars…
the time invested starting these little beauties is nothing compared to what I’ve gained – and will continue to gain…
I’m already thinking about next years plantings…
So when I spotted some discounted seed starting pots I had to pick them up – they were only .60 each, how could I not?
That’s 150 seedling beginnings for only $1.80!
Granted, I’ve used used egg cartons in the past, but my ‘egg guy’ has asked us to start returning them to help keep his costs down…so I do. With that in mind, I couldn’t pass this bargain up!
So while our household income has increased (slightly), so have our expenses (Finns education)…every purchase has a purpose (if not a dual one)… Whether it be for necessity or fun, everything is accounted for. But that doesn’t equate nothingness…
Living within your means or more appropriately, on a budget, doesn’t have to mean living without life’s little luxuries….grow your own flowers and enjoy freshly cut flowers all summer through!
It’s the simple things that make life, lovely…the first day of school, watching your child play on the playground with his new school mates and flowers in the garden…
Gardening is something I look forward to…despite this years crazy spring, super hot summer and now, mosquitos, things are growing and I continue to plant…and now am starting to reap the benefits…
I pulled the first few carrots of the season while Finn napped and as soon as he saw them (after he woke), he said, ‘Mamma, I want to pick carrots too!’
I didn’t want to subject him to the incessant mosquitos and thus, the required long sleeve shirt, long (thick) pants and gardening boots, so I picked while he slept…though when he told me he wanted to pick and wouldn’t mind ‘getting dressed’ (despite the 90+ degree day), out we went…
I was one proud mamma!
Look at these beauties.
Cosmo carrots (purple) and baby carrots, plus the first picking of basil and the never ceasing baby lettuce (under the carrots)…
Finn helped me plant all of these and I’m so happy he wants to help harvest too…I can only hope to instill a love for gardening or at minimum, an understanding of how food is grown and a respect for all that required to grow, organically…
I’m surprised by how well my little backyard garden is doing, despite all the odds against it…
Time constraints, a precocious three year old, fluctuating temperatures, heavy rains, Maine mosquitos (bad for me, not the garden) and the constant threat of insects (particularly slugs and snails right now)… makes gardening this year a bit of a challenge, to say the least. Granted there are always variables out of our control when growing one’s own, though this year, the wet and cooler temperatures are certainly above and beyond the ‘norm’…
While Finn naps, I try to get out there – little by little more seeds are sown, weeds are pulled, additional mulch is laid and insects are picked off one by one…for me the key to having and enjoying my garden is simply getting out there, once a day, even if only for 15 minutes…to keep an eye on things and say ‘hello’. Yes, I do talk to my plants…why not?
I want to garden. I want to eat fresh organic greens. I want to pick (and then enjoy) fresh homegrown, veggies! I want super fresh, real food. My current budget won’t allow me to buy locally grown, organic tomatoes, but it does, if I grow them myself, from seed. Lucky for us, I like to garden. And I have space to garden…
Not only do I like to garden, I need to garden. For me, it’s innate. It always has been. I like to eat what I grow. Plus, the taste, is impossible to achieve with store bought vegetables. Nothing is more fresh than ‘just picked.’ Seriously.
So, I garden.
I start seeds in the late winter/early spring, I compost, I save seeds, I read about companion planting and organic gardening. I teach myself and I learn as I go. Life is all about learning – it’s never ending – and for me, this years garden is teaching (and reminding me) that plants want to grow.
Every living thing wants to grow – despite set backs and challenges, we all want to and need to grow, vegetables are no different. So if you think you don’t know enough to grow a few plants, think again, they are forgiving (to a point) and they want to please you as much as you want to enjoy them…
So why not start a seed and see how it feels…you may just get hooked.
Don’t have a lot of space? Try plating vegetables/flowers in pots. A tomato doesn’t taste any better grown organically in the ground, in the country, in Maine as one grown organically, in a pot, on a fire escape in NYC…homegrown is homegrown, and that is always better than any store bought tomato…the best part of organic homegrown? Monsanto is not involved – at all.
Happy gardening – for yourself, your family and the earth!
Now I don’t need to tell you how to make egg salad, I’m sure you already know how…but just in case, here’s a friendly reminder for a lunch or brunch idea that can be as fancy (think bread, crusts removed, finger sized) or simple (rolled in a tortilla) as you like…
Add a little decadence – serve champagne with your finger sandwiches…or any sandwich for that fact!
Not only is egg salad good for just about any day, but it’s also perfect for picnics (keep chilled of course – sandwiches and champagne) and meals on the go. It’s inexpensive (even with organic eggs), requires little time and the ingredients are common to most.
Get the kids involved. Peel, smash, enjoy.
Simple Egg Salad
7-8 eggs, hard boiled and peeled.
(I wasn’t too worried about the state of the eggs once peeled, they’re just going to get smashed up anyway!)
2 heaped spoonfuls mayonnaise (or however much you prefer)
1 teaspoon english mustard
course salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Smash eggs with masher (this makes them super fluffy).
Add mayonnaise, mustard.
Mix until blended.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Serve on sliced bread, rolled in a tortilla or on a Portuguese roll.
Don’t forget to include fresh greens too!
Lunch is served!
Now, where is that champagne?