Stocking Up On $5 A Week

The Zombies are coming! The Zombies are coming!  Oh wait……wrong post lol.

It doesn’t take a zombie apocalypse to cause major upheaval in your life.  A job loss, a lingering illness, a hospital stay can all wreck havoc on your life.  Being prepared for life’s little hiccups can make things so much easier and less stressful.  But, how do you do this realistically?  My favorite blog-friend Heather has a great system over at The Welcoming House, but you might find even her great ideas a little overwhelming.

So how about just $5 a week?  Could you handle that?  It won’t make you completely food self-reliant, but it’s a great place to get yourself started.  Another lovely young lady in the blogosphere posted this fantastic list.  I’m going to do it and I thought I would share it with you.  So, check out the list and then run over to Little House Living and check out Merissa’s other great posts.

Week 1 – Spend $5 on Rice
Week 2 –  Spend $5 on Beans
Week 3 –  Spend $5 on Sugar
Week 4 –  Spend $5 on Salt
Week 5 –  Spend $5 on Baking Powder
Week 6 –  Spend $5 on Milk Powder
Week 7 –  Spend $5 on Dried Onion
Week 8 –  Spend $5 on Dried Garlic
Week 9 – Spend $5 on Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
Week 10 –  Spend $5 on Baking Powder or Yeast
Week 11 –  Spend $5 on a Whole Grain
Week 12 –  Spend $5 on anything else


Hope everyone is having a great week!


Linking up with:,,,,,,,

Kloss Liniment

Kloss liniment was invented by the herbalist Jethro Kloss.  It’s good for a host of things.  I am currently brewing up a batch for a friend using Rosemary Gladstone’s revised recipe.

Kloss liniment contains the following ingredients:


goldenseal (I used chaparral instead as it is not endangered and works just as well)



rubbing alcohol


So, how do you use it?  Americans don’t really use “liniment” much anymore.  Kloss liniment is especially good for sore muscles and other aches and pains and a great disinfectant. For use as a disinfectant, just pour the liniment over the affected area or use cotton balls or cloth to swab the area.

For sore muscles and other aches, dip a cotton cloth in the liniment and wring out so it’s not drippy. Wrap the cloth around the affected area.  Then, cover the cloth with plastic wrap to keep it from dripping on clothes and also to hold the moisture against the area without allowing it to evaporate too quickly.  If you want, you can wrap an ace bandage around that to really hold everything in place, especially if you wish to sleep with the liniment in place.  Once the cloth has dried out or in the morning if you use it overnight, remove everything and wipe off the area with clean water and pat dry.

Athletes can especially benefit from this including weekend warriors.  But, anyone with sore muscles or arthritic joints can also benefit.

If you decide to mix up a batch, remember to label your bottle “Not For Internal Use”.  This is especially important if, like me, you have a lot of tinctures and such lying around which are normally taken internally.  It’s really not a good idea to ingest rubbing alcohol.


Hope you’re having a great week!

p.s.  This was tax week for me so I’m a little behind on my posting for the week.  But, the taxes are done and filed woohoo!


I’ve Been Remiss

I have not posted in two weeks and there are some who are unhappy with me.  *hangs head in shame*   Soooooo…… is what I’ve been doing.


Spending time with Monster and Tiny…..

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Canning pork’n beans…..

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Celebrating my birthday with a new purchase…..

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On top of that I’ve been putting the finishing touches on our church’s Women’s Retreat coming up in May, coordinating the monthly Women’s Breakfast, helping to form the new Discipleship team, working, taking care of ….you know….life.

I promise I’ll do better……lol.

Hope everyone is having a great week!


I’m Official!

The past couple of weeks have seen a few changes around here.

First, I completed my Family Herbalist training.  I scored a 96 on my final. Ok, I was impressed.  So, now I am officially a Certified Family Herbalist.  Woohoo!!

Sigh, now I’m looking for my next certification training.  Eventually, I want to get my Clinical Herbalist certification.

Also, last weekend I was inducted into the Daughters of the American Revolution.  I have been able to trace and document my lineage back to the American Revolution to a Patriot who gave material aid to the military.

I actually have three lines that I can trace back that far (and further), but I have only  documented the first line so far.  Eesh!  That documentation can be stiff!  Marriage certs, birth certs, death certs.  It takes some doing.

On the gardening front, our new greenhouse was delivered.  It’s still sitting in a box right now while we gather the funds for the concrete pad to set it on.  It’s going to be 10 feet by 12 feet.  I’m so excited!!

And also in gardening news….I can FINALLY start planting something!  I hope to get my peas in the ground in the next week and my peppers in starter pots ready for the greenhouse.  Come on spring!!

I hope everyone has a wonderful week.

Do You Ever….

Do you ever read the blogs by the women who can/dehydrate/store  everything that doesn’t move and feel inadequate?  I do.

Do you ever read the blogs by the women who tout how to have a wonderful, loving, romantic marriage and feel inadequate?  I do.

Do you ever read the blogs by the women who homeschool 28 children and they all go on to acquire Masters Degrees and feel inadequate?  I do.

Do you ever read the blogs by the women who propose to tell you how to clean and organize your house all without sacrificing your quiet time with God or your  manicure  and feel inadequate? I do.

Do you ever read the blogs by the women who grow acres of gardens proficiently every single year and feel inadequate?  I do.

Do you ever read the blogs by the women who propose to tell you how to only eat organic, locally grown produce and grass-fed meat and feel inadequate?  I do.

I know that these women are all well-meaning and in truth, I actually learn a great deal from them for my own journey.  But, lets get real here.  It can get overwhelming.

Would you like a little bit of fresh air?

Ok, deep breath.  I’m about to take the plunge into real-life honesty here.

I work a full-time job.  I don’t get to be a stay-at-home wife. I only got to be a stay-at-home-mom for a couple of years.  I only just now (a few years ago) started canning things and I ‘m still learning.  My 32 year marriage has been…..well, lets just say less than stellar for the majority of those 32 years.  My only child is serving time in prison. I never got to homeschool like I wanted to. My housekeeping can leave a lot to be desired.  My garden spot is 8 feet by 8 feet and doesn’t always do well.  I buy the meat I can afford and that is rarely the “good” stuff.  Produce is the same way. Some nights we eat boxed cereal for dinner…by choice. I do what I can with what I have and try to share what I’ve learned along the way.

Do you feel better now?  Have I lifted the load a little bit? Good.  Because now you and I can pick ourselves up and move forward to glean what we can from the “experts”  and walk our own journeys.  We don’t need to walk in their footsteps, we need to make our own.  Sometimes we will be parallel to theirs and sometimes we will be off on a wild tangent.  And you know what?  That’s ok.  Because someday, we may an “expert” to someone else because of that tangent. Let’s just keep doing what we need to do for ourselves and our families and not worry if we “measure up” to someone else’s moving target.

I hope you have a wonderful week being right where you are, learning and doing just what you need.

Linking up with:,,,,,,,

Pickled Garlic

Ok, ok.  Stop saying “Eeeeew!” and making retching sounds. Pickled garlic is really quite good.

But why, oh why would anyone ever make it?

Well, for me it’s for cold and flu season.  Yep, it’s another weapon in my herbal arsenal.  Garlic is anti-microbial, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and anti-viral.   It’s pretty much “anti” everything you could want.  The only problem is, how do you use it when you have the ickies?

You can chop it up really fine and combine it with honey and cayenne.  That’s especially good for strep throat.  You can eat a lot of garlicky Italian food. But the easiest way to get all the kick-butt goodness out of garlic when you’re sick is to just chomp on some garlic cloves.

Yeah. Like that’s gonna happen.

I seriously could not get around the idea of just chomping into a raw clove of garlic.  Definitely eeeeewww!!!  Until I found a recipe for pickled garlic.  I tried one recipe from Rosemary Gladstone and it was…..meh.  Then I tried one from Heather over at the Welcoming House.  Score!

It’s easy to make and just tastes like garlicky pickles without the dill or the cucumbers. Now, when I feel the ickies coming on like I did this week (thanks for sharing your germs boss) I can pop open a jar and have my own herbal Tamiflu shot.  Without the cost of doctors, prescriptions, taking off work, driving all over town… get the picture.

So, how do you take this pickled garlic for colds and flu?  When you first start to feel like you might be coming down with something, take one clove every 1-2 hours.  Continue that for at least 2 days even if you feel fine after the first day.

If you miss the warning signs and come down with something, take one clove every 1/2 to 1 hour until symptoms subside.  Then continue for at least one more day.

Yes, you will smell like garlic.  Yes, you will successfully keep any and all vampires away.  And potentially all others as well.  Personally, if I’m feeling sick I WANT to keep people away from me so I won’t infect them with whatever yuck I may have.

You need:

6 cups of peeled garlic (you can cheat like I did and buy it already peeled from your favorite warehouse store)


canning salt


pint canning jars

Sorry, I can’t give you the exact recipe from Heather, because it’s her copyright.  But, hop on over to her blog if you want the exactness.

The prep took about 10-15 minutes.  Then I put everything into my canning jars and water bath canned them.  Perfect!!

Now wouldn’t this be far better than a week or more of sickness and expensive medicine?  Hey, even over-the-counter meds can get pricey.  Give it a try!


Linking up with:,,,,,,,


More Bang For Your Buck Part 6: Cleaning Things Up

Welcome back for Part 6!  Today I want to talk to you about cleaning.  Cleaning products are expensive! And it seems like there is a different product for every single thing that needs to be cleaned.  Go check out how many different cleaning supplies you have under your kitchen sink right now.  Then go check out your bathroom cabinet.  What about out in the garage? Do we really need all those different jars and bottles and boxes?  Or is there a different way?

Although my husband insists on using some specialty cleaners for the cars, for the house I only use a couple specialty items.  They are:

Scrubbing bubbles bathroom cleaner (used to remove nicotine streaks from the walls – don’t ask)

Toilet bowl cleaner

Grout whitener (used to removed nicotine stains from the once-white bathtub grout)

Otherwise, here’s the list of the cleaners that I use:

white vinegar

blue dawn dish soap



baking soda

washing soda


fels naptha soap

rubbing alcohol

hydrogen peroxide

That’s it.  With those items I am able to make:

all-purpose cleaner

grease cutting kitchen cleaner

laundry soap

laundry stain remover

floor mopping solution

carpet spot remover

general wall washing solution

microwave cleaning solution

non auto-clean oven cleaner

window cleaner

dishwasher washing cubes

mold remover

And so much more. I think the most expensive item on my list of supplies would be the blue Dawn dish soap, but I buy the large bottles of it normally anyway because I use it to wash dishes.  The amount used for other purposes is rather minimal.

Ok, so what do you do with these “ingredients”?  Here’s a few ideas to get you started.

All-purpose cleaner:

spray bottle



Essential oils – optional

Fill spray bottle half full with plain white vinegar, fill the rest of the way with water.  Add a few drops of essential oils if desired.  My favorites are orange, tangerine, and grapefruit.  Use in the kitchen, bathroom, anywhere you would use that “numbered” spray cleaner. Does it make your house smell like vinegar? Not after it dries, and the essential oils help with the odor.  It just leaves a clean smell behind. You can use this spray to clean germy places too.  Vinegar is just as effective at that as bleach, but can be used around children and pets.

Grease Cutting Kitchen Cleaner AND Laundry Stain Remover:

Spray Bottle


Blue Dawn dish soap


Mix equal parts of all three ingredients in a spray bottle.  Use for really greasy kitchen clean up (I use it on my stove top if it gets really bad) and for stain removal on your clothes.  Remember to spot test this formula on your clothing before using and NEVER use this spray with bleach in the wash.

General Floor and Wall Cleaner:

You can use the general cleaner solution for this if you want just made up in a larger batch or do the following -

1 gallon hot water

1 cup vinegar

1/2 cup washing soda

Mix well.  Mop floor as usual.

Microwave Cleaner

1 cup vinegar

Place vinegar in microwave safe bowl.  Microwave on high for 1 minute.  Wipe down microwave. Repeat if needed.

Homemade Laundry Soap

That should get you started.  There are so many great ideas floating around the interwebz – go check them out!

Hope you’re having a great week!

Linking up with:


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