Tag Archives: Frugal Living

Simple-to-make wild bird food for our northwest winter

PB and Yummies for Wild Birds in Winter

You don’t need a fancy feeder to serve this simple wild bird food concoction.  Whip it up, smear it on the nearest post or tree trunk, and store the rest in an airtight tub. You can make it either meaty or vegan–your choice.   Either way, your feathered friends will thank you!

If you cook bacon, save up the grease until you have one cup.  A great way to “up-cycle” something that was destined for the garbage!

If you don’t cook bacon, just substitute lard or vegetable shortening.  You can also mix up a combo of these fats. Continue reading Simple-to-make wild bird food for our northwest winter

Bring back those amazing plastic bags!

In our household with four kids and a zillion pets, a plastic grocery bag was a treasured thing. I don’t think one ever went to waste.

I never understood the plastic bag recycling container at the supermarket. I always wanted to raid it.  How could people relinquish their bags?  We never had enough of them.

And each one usually went through several uses, before it was finally relegated to its final use—usually something pretty rank.

Lining the diaper pail (the old-time cotton diapers, folks.) Lining a trash can. Cat/guinea pig/bird/hamster/gerbil/rat/ferret refuse.

Kids’ muddy clothes, needing to get from Point A to the laundry room without making an ultra-used car’s interior worse than it already was.

The only thing more valuable was a shoe box. They would be tucked away for those inevitable sad days to come.

They would become the final resting home for small pets that, having breathed their last, would be carefully placed in a ziplock, which would be solemnly zipped shut, then put in a carefully saved shoebox (with tearstained letters), then sealed with duct tape.

Then Steve would dig the latest grave, in the presence of weeping. Once he had carefully laid the box to rest, I would urge him to say some words of comfort. He always gave me That Look…then sighed and proceeded with his latest eulogy.

Big families, tight budgets

We represented that entity that, long ago, used to be the standard bearer of American life and culture.

A large, messy, rowdy, cluttered, busy family—somehow making it work on a budget. Continue reading Bring back those amazing plastic bags!

Lower your heating bills-replace window blinds with pretty no-sew curtains

Both propane and electricity costs are going up this winter.

And strict new wood burning laws make it hard to rely on a trusty wood stove or fireplace.

Slatted window blinds don’t hold out the cold that well.  And it’s hard to keep them dusted.  Besides, they can make your home look as comforting as a dentist office.

The same goes for vertical blinds on sliding glass doors.  They’re hard to keep clean, they don’t look very homey, and they don’t keep out the cold very well. Continue reading Lower your heating bills-replace window blinds with pretty no-sew curtains

Super easy faux concrete pots and planters

A great way to re-purpose disposable plastic containers –

Love the homespun look of concrete pots and planters, but can’t stand lugging them around?  Or dropping one on your foot?

Or is it just too intimidating to work with pure concrete mixtures?

Try this super-easy and inexpensive method to make your own faux concrete pots and planters.  They are much lighter than regular concrete, too!  Even elderly people and children will have no problem filling and moving these pots.

Don’t have any fancy molds?

That’s the best part of these creations!  You can use anything as a mold, as long as it’s flexible and disposable. Continue reading Super easy faux concrete pots and planters

Spend a Quiet Night in the Willapa Hills

The utter peace of spending the night in a deep quiet forest in the Willapa Hills.  Fresh chantrelle mushrooms, melodic streams, wild things, making dinner by a crackling fire before sleeping under a simple covering.

The next morning, make pancakes in the rain with the simplest of tools, over a still burning fire.

This is a beautiful video about a single night spent in a peaceful forest, in the most primitive of conditions. Continue reading Spend a Quiet Night in the Willapa Hills