Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A couple of pictures

Just a couple of pictures that I wanted to share. 

Adam, playing soccer: 

Luke, playing soccer:

Argh! There be pirates in my living room!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Repurposing a milk jug

There are a million ways to repurpose a milk jug. If you are so inclined, you can peruse the two-page spread in The Tightwad Gazette that outlines a couple dozen of those ways. But here is my favorite:

I cut part of the handle off, and slice diagonally across the top. 

And then I fill it with clothespins. I can use the modified handle to slip the jug over my clothesline, or I can put the handle in my pocket (very handy!) so that I don't have to chase my clothespin container as it slides down the clothesline. 

Now I still use my pretty clothespin holder that you can see in this post, but I think my milk-jug holder is more practical. I really like that I can hook it on my pocket or the clothesline. I can make more holders easily, and best of all, I'm reusing something I already have. I've always used several milk jug holders downstairs on my basement lines, but now that I have multiple lines outside, my little hillbilly -er, ah... thrifty secret is out for everyone to see.


It's summer, and I don't have my garden in, yet. But I have been hitting the clothesline pretty hard. See? 

I've been trying to keep from turning on the a/c, and I'm winning the battle so far. For someone who hates, hates to be hot, I have managed to keep the a/c off, even though my indoor temps have topped 85 degrees. For me, that's HUGE. Part of my a/c battle involves keeping the oven and clothes dryer off. 

I forgot, over the long winter, how quickly clothes dry on an outdoor line. I am loving that I can dry several loads in a few hours (as opposed to 24-plus on my indoor winter lines), and I love the new umbrella clothesline that my mom got me! 

I can hang two-and-a-half loads on my umbrella line! I can put a load on my regular line, start it drying, put a load or two on my umbrella line, and by the time I'm on load 3, my first load is dry. This is GREAT! 

See how much room I've got on my umbrella line? I am in looooove. I think I'm going to need more clothespins. Still cheaper than the dryer, right? 

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Keeping inventory

This is a picture that I took just after Thanksgiving, but a comment from my friend Liz made me remember I wanted to post about it! 

On the right is our little white board that Hubby & I use to write little messages to each other. We were both so excited to have Thanksgiving leftovers! I LOVE Thanksgiving leftovers, and so does Hubby. The kids love them, too, because they LOVE turkey, and pumpkin pie. But that's not the point of this post. 

Next to our white board you'll see the freezer inventory. We have a chest freezer in the basement, and I (of course) use it when I stock up on good deals. (In fact, I have a couple of hams in there that I bought for a steal during Holy Week.) 

The freezer inventory works like this: I make a list of what's in the freezer, with a slash mark next to the item, indicating how many of the item I have. (If I have three boxes of stick butter, it gets three slashes.) When I remove an item from the freezer, I make an "X" out of my slash. I lifted this idea from The Tightwad Gazette, when the author writes about keeping track of her garden produce. 

The inventory helps me plan meals, and it keeps me from being wasteful. If I see a good deal coming up on an item, I can check my list to see if it's time to replenish my supply of said item, or wait for the next sale. 

I'm not perfect at remembering to cross off items, and I do make a new inventory list every four to six months (my old one gets messy and inaccurate.) But it does help!