Frugal Bookshelf & Storage Shelf Update

This is such a frugal and easy way to really make a bookshelf or organizational shelf special! After lining the kitchen shelves in our new (to us) 1940’s farmhouse, I had quite a few scraps of this pretty self-adhesive shelf liner left over.

When I started putting together this organizational shelf to tame the supplies for my online store, I decided to line the back panel with the shelf liner. If you have a shelving unit that’s already assembled, you can either remove the back panel and line it, or carefully measure and cut the liner to fit while it’s still assembled. Here are a few tips to help…

For units where the back panel slides into groves, rather than getting nailed or screwed on, measure the panel and add 1/4 inch so that the shelf liner can fold around the edges. This […]

Affording Real Foods By Shopping On-line

Today, I’m tackling buying real foods pantry staples on-line (including the links to the actual products I order, along with a price break-down on each item!) and later we’ll work on finding affordable real foods in your area. We’ll also be taking a look at where the money goes in a real foods budget and how to prioritize in a future post.

I confess, I was spoiled rotten when we lived in Ohio because I could shop every week at a wonderful local grocery store that carried pretty much any real foods I could possibly want. We also had a huge health food store that had unbelievable sales on herbs, coconut oil and tons of other treasures. I’m talking 40% off, often! Since we moved to South Dakota in December, I’ve been choosing to be thankful for each thing I discover… because I’m not finding much. 😉

Enter, the […]

DIY Herbal Shoe Sachets

Stinky shoes? Whip up a few of these and your shoes (or your hubby’s shoes, wink-wink!) will smell fresh and clean.

These instructions may seem a bit vague, but I wanted to do this project with things we already had. It’s meant to be a frugal project for using up leftover material scraps, thread and herbs, but feel free to go buy the supplies, if you need them. 🙂

In some of these pictures, you’ll see two pairs being worked on. Both are for my hubby (note the “manly” material I found! Hehehe!), one for his work shoes and one for his everyday shoes.

What you’ll need: Material that is at least 4 inches wide and 14 inches long, for each shoe. For larger shoes, you can make them bigger, for child’s shoes, adjust to make them smaller. Natural materials are always preferred over synthetic. Thread that […]

DIY Herbal Fire Starters

The girls and I had such a blast perfecting these! So, here’s the deal. I told you last week about my favorite herbs to grow and my guest post on Modern Alternative Mama was all about how we created our awesome raised bed herb garden. Did you look at those pictures?! That’s a whole lot of herbs to use! Even when I do find some wonderful uses for my herbs, like my herbal bath salts, there’s still all of those dried stems that were going to waste. No longer!

Here’s the perks of making my herbal fire starters: Waste not, want not, right?? These are very frugal and they leave you with a “look at this totally cool thing I made” feeling! There’s no petroleum jelly or wax or other funky chemicals that you really shouldn’t be breathing. Herbal smoke purifies the air if you’re inside– during […]

Frugal Fun

Fun activities can be expensive… but they don’t have to be! For “Frugal February”, I have been brain-storming ideas for cheap and free family fun.

Get Outside State and National parks are a wonderful place to enjoy some family time! Depending on your location and the time of year, you could hike, camp, picnic, swim, play outdoor games, rock climb, sled, climb trees, bird watch, take pictures, fish and countless other things! Just being out in a natural environment makes everyday things more fun. Cook some hotdogs over an open fire and then go barefoot to search for frogs and toads in a shallow stream. It’s cheap and your kids will love it! Be creative! (Bonus: Many parks also have classes and group activities, sometimes free! Check at the info center.) Outdoor concerts can be found in many cities and towns. Pack a picnic and go experience something new. […]

Saving Money with a Freezer

Not everybody has the money or space to have a stand-alone freezer, I understand. If that’s you, don’t skip this post. I’ll also be sharing great space-saving tips for those with very limited freezer space! 🙂

In our kitchen, we have a side-by-side fridge/freezer. There’s no way we could get a decent sized turkey in there for Thanksgiving, but I do love having a bunch of adjustable shelves. About a year ago we got a big ol’ freezer that is now in our basement. LOVE it! True, it can be pretty expensive up front, but it saves a ton of money in the long run. If you want to get a freezer, but can’t afford to buy new, try www.craigslist.com or www.freecycle.org to find a cheap or free one. You can also try garage sales and moving sales. It may take some time and effort, but I think it […]

Cooking From the Freezer and Pantry

Does anybody else have ingredients in their kitchens that just never seem to get made into anything? For my Frugal February Challenge, most of what we eat will come from our freezer and pantry. I will still buy some fresh produce, a little cheese, butter and, of course, raw milk and eggs from the farm. Other than that, I’ll be cooking a ton from scratch. It may get pretty… creative around here.

My Stockpile

Here’s an idea of what I have to work with:

1/4 of a cow 1/4 of a pig a few chickens lots of frozen veggies rice, oats, nuts and tons of grain “extras” like coconut oil, organic maple syrup, herbs and spices, etc. the dairy and fresh produce mentioned above

The beef and pork are pastured animals that we purchased directly from the farmers. There are many different cuts and I do have bones from the […]

Frugal February: A Money-Saving Challenge

When my hubby and I first got married our income was $900 a paycheck. Where we lived, a decent one-bedroom apartment was almost $800 a month, so nearly half of our monthly income went to rent. Utilities were expensive in that area, so most of the rest of our income went to electric, gas and water bills along with car insurance. Money was pretty tight. We budgeted carefully, accounted for every penny we spent and almost never ate out or bought anything that wasn’t a true need (i.e. food, car repairs or medicine).

Adding Up the Little Things

In the last ten years, our income has gone up quite a bit (though it went down some with the economy). We fell out of the habit of being very careful with our money. We are by no means frivolous spenders, but there are so many little ways we could save […]