Yep, I’ve been getting some things done this week for sure. First I made my first batch of Winter Cold Syrup. I think I’ll be making more of this in a much larger batch. Even before it sets a few days it tastes wonderful! The original recipe came from A Little Life Blog. There was no cut and dry recipe, but here’s what I ended up with from her post and all the comments below it.
In a jar, combine lemon slices, organic honey, cinnamon and sliced ginger.
Close jar and put it in the fridge, it will form into a “jelly”.
To serve: Spoon jelly into mug and pour boiling water over it.
Store in fridge 2-3 months.
I don’t really know much about ginger root other than when I licked it, it was horrid. lol. I didn’t put in a lot until I see how it is when its sat a few days. I also added the cinnamon myself because cinnamon is wonderful for helping to break up congestion and it tastes just so darned good.
Now because I want this blog to be the truth about my successes AND my failures… I forgot to put this into the ‘fridge and its gotten a bit…ewwwy. Tomorrow I’ll remake it and not forget this time. I think I will also put in the lemons with the rind and not mush it about so much.
For lunch today I made Cucumber and Roasted Corn Salsa on Grilled Bread With Feta . Now the cool thing about this recipe is the story behind it and I urge you to read it through when you follow the link.
I tweaked it a little. First, I don’t like raw tomatos. Yes, I know, I heard the global gasp at that, but I can’t stand them. I love marinara, ketchup, etc…but raw makes me gag (literally). I put green peppers in mine. It also calls for lovely artisan bread, toasted with olive oil, but I only had bread. Still even with all that changed, it was very good. I would definitely have liked it on good, crusty bread better, but it was still good. She also uses Feta that looks like its marinated in something. I only had dry crumbled feta. Lastly, I urge you to go lightly on the lime juice. You can always add more, but you can’t take it out. It was a little potent for me and next time I’ll go a little more lightly on that. I recommend trying this. Great way to use up cukes, too.
We had a wonderful time yardsaling this weekend. We didn’t hit that many, but we scored big time. I got a box with enough, I think its Tule, to make wedding trains for 5 brides. It’s bright white and in perfect condition. I just had to have it for “something” down the line. I got a wonderful Homedics back massaging chair. We got it for a steal and it feels SOOOO good. I never would have bought one new, so this was a lovely find.
I also got these diaper things. I don’t really know what they’re called, but apparantly they are rather expensive. These are inserts for little underwear looking things. You slide them in then you just change them out when dirty and wash them. The woman said there is hemp in them so the more you wash them the softer they become. I’m going to cut them in half and make washing cloths. I got a good sized bag of them.
I also wanted to bring your attention to two articles that Homestead Survival posted. Family Cloths. At first, I was totally grossed out by even the notion, but the more I read and thought about it, it makes total sense in an emergency situation. As long as I have TP I’ll be using it, but this is an idea that is too good to not keep in mind.
These little diaper things would work nicely for this idea as well.
I also made my own Orange Vinegar and that’s sitting and steeping. And I made a homemade cleaner with this recipe. I used Eucalyptus Oil because my Tea Tree Oil still hasn’t arrived, but this mix smells wonderful. I can’t wait to use it.
1/2 C. vinegar* (a great disinfectant)
1 tsp. borax (add water softening properties)
1 tsp. liquid soap (use castille or dish detergent)
2 tsp. baking soda (add disinfecting and odor removing)
15 drops Tea Tree essential oil (a great antibacterial-antimicrobial oil) (Or use your favorite essential oil)
Use a funnel to pour vinegar, borax, liquid soap and baking soda into empty spray bottle. Beware when you add the baking soda the mixture will foam up a bit.
Fill bottle with warm water to within 1″ of top.
Place top on bottle and shake gently to mix.
Be sure to label your bottle.
~I use this spray for all my general purpose cleaning in the kitchen and bath. *I use an orange vinegar–place orange peels in a jar and cover with white vinegar. The orange oils in the peels help break down grease, disinfect and add a pleasant smell. Add additional vinegar as needed. Replace peels every 3-4 months. ~This also works with lemon, lime or grapefruit rinds. Or use your favorite herbs for an herbal vinegar, lavender and thyme work well but make a dark colored vinegar (it doesn’t stain). ~I use the orange vinegar straight for cleaning the greasy range hood and to clean our grill. (author’s notes).”
So it’s been a busy few days. Thanks for reading and I’ll keep you posted as I try to jump into this journey of frugality.
I’ve had this bag of onions sitting in my kitchen. It’s a 10 lb. bag. I bought it so that I could chop them up and dehydrate them. You’ll guess by now that since they are still sitting in my kitchen tat I never got around to it. Well, today, thanks to all the frugal sites I visit and made me feel guilty I did it. I got myself nice and comfy at my kitchen island and started chop-chop-chopping away. With eyes streaming down my face, and luckily no fingers included in the pile of choppings, I made quick work of that 10 lb. bag. Now my dehydrator is running and the air in the entire house is onion saturated. I’ll burn some vanilla candles later, but it would be pointless to do it now.
I came into my room to put some distance between me and the worst of the fumes and started looking through homemade mix recipes. I used to have basics on hand all the time, but over the years I got lazy and just bought them pre-made. But the prices of food, and ingredients, has just gone up and up and I decided to start making my own again. That said, there are some things that its just worth the few extra pennies to buy than to make. Not all mixes are cheaper, or really even healthier, than the store bought ones. I think I touched on this in another post so I won’t go into it here.
I did find some that would be a good deal to make and am looking forward to having them on hand again. I thought I would share a few of them here.
Chai Tea Mix
1/2 cup powdered creamer
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 cup granulated sugar
15 teaspoons instant black tea (or pekoe)
Combine all ingredients together and store in a tightly sealed container.
To Make a Cup of Chai Tea:
1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon Chai Tea Creamer Mix
1 cup boiling water
1 1/2 teaspoons honey (optional)
Combine the Chai Tea Mix with the boiling water and honey, if using; allow to steep for 2 to 3 minutes. The Chai Tea mixture will dissolve much better when vigorously stirred into hot water.
Creamed Soup Base
Use instead of condensed canned cream soups in recipes. Just add the ingredient that forms the basis of the soup. Chop mushrooms, saute in a bit of olive oil and add for cream of mushroom soup. Add chicken for cream of chicken soup. You get the idea! Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Ingredients: •2 cups nonfat dry milk powder •3/4 cup cornstarch •1/4 cup instant reduced sodium chicken or beef bouillon granules •1/2 tsp. dried thyme leaves •1/2 tsp. dried basil leaves •1/4 tsp. white pepper
Combine all ingredients and mix well with wire whisk until blended. Store mix in an airtight container. To prepare as a substitute for one can of condensed cream soup in recipes, stir together 1/3 cup dry mix and 1-1/4 cup water in a saucepan. Cook and stir until thickened. Mix a total of nine cans condensed soup substitute.
Onion Soup Mix (I buy tons of this so looking forward to making my own in bulk.)
Make your own onion soup mix to use for soups or dips.
•3/4 cup instant minced onion •1/3 cup beef flavored instant bouillon •4 tsp. onion powder •1/4 tsp. celery salt or celery seed •1/4 tsp. sugar or Splenda •1/8 tsp. white pepper
Mix all ingredients together well, and store up to 6 months in cool, dry place. Stir before each use. Five tablespoons of the mix equals 1.25-oz. pkg. of purchased dry onion soup mix.
Cafe Bavarian Mix
Give this wonderfully sweet and rich coffee mix as a gift in a tightly sealed shiny new coffee tin and finish it off with a big bow.
•1 cup powdered non dairy creamer •1-1/3 cups sugar •1 cup instant coffee granules •1/2 cup cocoa powder •10 hard candy peppermints
Place all ingredients in bowl of blender or food processor. Process until well blended and particles are fine. Store in tightly covered container in a cool dry place. To use, dissolve 1-2 Tbsp. of mix in 1 cup boiling water or to taste.
If you try any of these let me know how they turn out! Do you have any recipes for homemade mixes to share?
Yet another clever use for t-shirts. Why am I so fascinated with them lately? I don’t know either, but I’ve seen some of the coolest things lately. This necklace would be so stylish and so comfy to wear. You could even add a few big baubly beads to dress it up even more. I can’t wait for summer and yard sales!