Friday’s Frugal Five

I had to do some traveling for work this week to Dover Delaware for a trade show and I was treated to a nice hotel stay with  some good food.  They even gave us a $25 voucher to do some gambling in the hotel casino.  But honestly to tell the truth, that’s just not my thing anymore.  I would rather be home with the Z Man, the babies, the chickens and even Myrtle, our bird.  I’m just a homebody now and happy to be one.

Frugal Five:

  • Before I left I made the Z Man lots of meals for his breakfast, lunch and dinners while I was traveling.  Chicken soup, pesto chicken pasta, sausage and cheese strata.  He ate good too while I was away.
  • The trade show host provided us with $25 vouchers to do some gambling in the hotel casino.  I gifted $10 of mine to a co worker, but I still ended up winning $52 and walked away from the 1¢ slot machines that I was playing.  I know I’m such a big shot right, playing the 1¢ slot machines. 😉  That’s right 1¢ instead of the $1 machines.
  • I brought back the hotel amenities (shampoo, coffee, teas) that I did not use during my stay.  I did not hoard extras, I just brought home what I did not use.
  • Last week when I made smoothies I ran out of fruit, so I decided to use some blackberries the Z Man picked last summer that I had in the freezer.  Well, remember when I mentioned that I’m big on texture when it comes to my food.  There were so many seeds from those blackberries in my smoothie that I just couldn’t do it.  So instead of tossing the remaining four smoothie set ups I had in the freezer I just thawed them out and removed the blackberries and refroze them with different fruit.  I wasn’t about to waste the other ingredients.  Throwing food away is the worst waste.  In the words of Dennis the Menace….  “You Can’t Waste Food!”
  • I bought groceries last night after work, stuck to my list and bought nothing extra.  I needed to stock up on fruit for my smoothies, which isn’t cheap.  I spent $75 which brings my grocery total to $149 for the month, leaving me a balance of $151.    Here is what I bought….


At least there is a little more color in my grocery purchases this week.

OK, your turn, what frugal fun did you have this week.

Till next time, Y’all stay safe out there!


Chickens and Eggs

I’m so excited Y’all!!!

We were gifted a chicken coop last weekend.  This came at a great time because I’ve been wanting to increase our flock which means we definitely would’ve needed another coop and this kept us from having to build one.  Score!

This is a stationary coop.  We will need to do some work on it to make it safe for the chickens.  And, we will fence it in and put an overhang roof on it too.

I want to free range these chickens during the day and house them at night.  The neighborhood dog threat is gone, so hopefully this will be successful.

The Z Man calls it a chicken coop starter kit.  There is still quite a bit of work to be done to it, but we’ll get it done in time for the spring chicks.

So Excited!!!


You know, I have a confession.  I never really loved eggs in the past.  Certainly not to the point that I thought I wanted to raise my own chickens.

Eggs were just ok.  I ate them, but didn’t actually crave them.  But of course now that we have our own chickens…

We are very spoiled with amazing fresh eggs….


But, it hasn’t been until recently that I’ve decided that I love eggs.  I actually sometimes do crave them.  I believe the reason for this is that I’ve finally figured out how I “like” my eggs cooked.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love a good fried egg sandwich, where the yolk is still just slightly soft and can make just a little bit of a mess when you eat it.

However, my favorite is a spinach, mushroom scramble with hot sauce (specifically sriracha sauce) and feta cheese.  It’s just amazing.  While the eggs have great flavor, they also get texture from the veggies and I am big on texture.  Texture, to me, can make or break a dish.


Yep, so those are my favorite eggs.  Well I suppose I should say our chicken’s eggs are my favorite eggs, this just happens to be my favorite way of preparing them.

I know, now you’ll sleep better tonight knowing how I like my eggs, wont you. 😉

Till next time, Y’all stay safe out there!


Weekend Happenings

The weather was lovely, not too cold and dry so we were able to get outside a bit.  Unfortunately that was until the Z Man scratched his eye / cornea with a tree branch.  He is doing fine, but I know that pain and it ain’t no fun.

Some breakfast:  sausage and cheese strata….


Some dinner: Grilled chicken, homemade pesto pasta and caesar salad with a homemade caesar dressing.

Caesar Salad Dressing

  • 1 cup mayo
  • 1 Tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 Tbsp worcestershire sauce (yes I had to look at the bottle label to spell it) 😉
  • 3 Tbsp mustard
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • S&P to taste

Wisk or shake (in a jar of course) all ingredients and you’ll have a very tasty homemade caesar dressing.


Remember all of those avocado I bought that were on sale?  We ate on them all weekend and I still put up three containers of good guacamole in the freezer.


Some more dinner:  Kale and cranberry stuffed pork chops, sweet potato, and caesar salad….


We ate pretty darn good over the weekend.

I’d like to invite you to our What’s Cooking Facebook Page if you would like to share your meal ideas and pictures too, we’d love to see them.  It’s a great way to get fresh ideas and stay out of the meal rotation rut and it’s fun to see what everyone else is eating.

Z Life What’s Cooking:

Till next time, stay safe out there Y’all!


Friday’s Frugal Five

I did well with my January grocery budget of $300.  My total spent was $212 leaving me $88 to sweep into my FA savings account.  You can read more about the Freedom Account Savings here. 

Unfortunately the grocery savings for January will go toward my hospital and physical therapy bills from cutting my finger.  Cutting your finger – NOT frugal!

I will keep my grocery budget for February at $300, because like I’ve said before there are some months that we will meet that budget.  This year I will include the garden expenses of seeds and plants, because our gardens do supplement our grocery expense all year.

As for meats – our pork and venison expense comes to around $550.00 a year.  But that cost is for about 700 lbs of meat.  No we don’t eat 700 lbs of meat in a year, we barter, gift and sell quite a bit of it. 

We track our expense and revenues for the chickens and the egg sales separately.  But, I do use a couple dozen eggs each week.

The meats and egg portion of our grocery budget is factored in annually.  A good estimate is that we spend approximately 90¢ per pound of meat.  That does not factor in the electricity to run the freezer….

Friday’s Frugal Five:

  • Set up our February budget in Dave Ramsey’s Every Dollar.  This was pretty easy to do using last month’s amounts.  There is one travel trip this month to be considered and of course Valentines Day.  Also keeping in mind that it’s a short month.
  • Returned my library books and audio books on time avoiding late fees.
  • Hung laundry on the line and inside on rainy days to avoid using the dryer.
  • Returned a dog lead that I purchased and it broke with in a couple uses.  It was cheap and a purchase I shouldn’t have made anyway.  Our dogs are small, but when they get sight of a rabbit they will take off like a bullet.  Must have a sturdy lead for their walks.
  • Bought groceries for next week and stuck to my list.  Avocados are on sale right now, so I like to make several batches of guacamole and freeze it when they go on sale.  It freezes wonderfully as long as it’s in a size container that will be used up in a single setting.  I hate brown guacamole.  But, if that happens you can always turn it into a salad dressing.

Here is what I bought:


My groceries are very green and brown this week.

I spent $74.00  leaving me $226.00 left of my February budget.

What’s not included in grocery picture is our weekly milk which is $20.00 a month and chicken breast which was $19.00

Hope you and yours have a lovely weekend.

Till next time, Y’all stay safe out there!