Archive for the ‘Kitchen’ Category

Reusing containers!

Posted: May 31, 2011 by hopejoyandfaithfarm in Kitchen

Not feeling super trashy right now, the truth is, the weather here in Oregon is unseasonably wet.  We get a lot of rain, and I can usually manage to feel motivated to be somewhat functioning, but it’s an overload of the rain and I’m tired of the mud.

So, I walked around my house and opened doors trying to find something frugal and trashy to share with you.  I opened the glass cupboard and voila’ there it was in front of me.

A few weeks ago I had a couple munchkins here wanting to drink some juice. All I had was regular ceramic coffee cups or my Mexican Glass drinking glasses, which are heavy and hard to hold for little hands.  A few years ago, it was almost the opposite.  If someone wanted a grown-up beverage (like a glass of wine or a mixed drink), chances are I served it in a Tom and Jerry plastic glass or a sippy cup.  Gradually, as my kids grew up and moved past the “dropping” stage, I got rid of those.  So, I had nothing light-weight and manageable for the kids to drink out of.

I thought about going and buying some plastic glasses, but we don’t have a dollar store close by and reality is, I really didn’t want to spend the money. I am not working and I have to pay more attention to where my spare change goes.  I was mixing the calf milk when a light bulb went off over my head.  I am a saver of sorts.  I’m not a hoarder by any means, as a matter of fact, I’ve made it a goal to toss things out that I don’t need.  But, I had saved a couple of scoops from the lamb and calf milk replacers and they were out in the feed shed.

The kids seem to like the pictures on them and I don’t have to spend the money to buy safe drinking containers for little hands.  Of course, I did laugh when I noticed Lyndsey (who is 15 years old) drinking her iced tea out of one the other day! She wouldn’t let me get a picture, darn it!

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Is it really trash?

Posted: May 17, 2011 by hopejoyandfaithfarm in Kitchen, preparedness, Uncategorized

First off, I hope no one takes this post wrong, I am not dumpster diving for food.  Money is tight, but we have plenty to eat.

I pick up buckets from a couple local restaurants and our local food bank calls me when they have food they cannot get rid of.  The buckets from the restaurants go to our chickens.  They love it, and since I give it to them on the same day the restaurants scrape the plates, its is fresh.  It helps stretch my livestock feed a little bit longer and it helps save the restaurants money on their dumpster costs.  I always feed it to the chickens early in the day to ensure it gets cleaned up and there aren’t scraps laying around to attract raccoons and skunks.

The food bank gives me boxes that contain old bagged salad mixes, mushrooms, bread, etc.  Lately I’ve gotten a lot of mangos and the sheep and mini-horse are thrilled to get a few of them as treats.  The other day I got a huge box of bananas, some of which went to the pigs.  Mushy bananas equal happy pigs.  However, some of the bananas were still in really good shape.  So, I froze some for banana bread and put some in the food dehydrator.  Another day, there were a whole bunch of onions that weren’t even beginning to be soft.  I dried those as well.    There are occasionally carrots and pears that are in good shape too. If the citrus is in good shape I juice it and freeze the juice.  I came home the other day with 5-6 boxes of fruits and vegetables, equaling out to 3 days of fresh goodies for the chickens.  When the food bank calls, even if I wasn’t planning a trip to town, I go to pick up what ever they have.  It helps them a lot with not having to throw the food away.  I spend time sorting them, taking out what I know the chickens won’t eat (citrus fruits, peppers, onions) and sorting out anything that I can use as a special treat for the sheep and piggies (training tools).   I compost what can’t be fed to the critters, so nothing goes to waste.

A lot of times, the lady who runs the food bank calls me for special things.  One day, she had an overflow of red, yellow and white potatoes (like 4 fifty pound boxes).  She called me and I said “yep, I’ll take them”.  I split them up into a bunch of bags and gave them to friends and neighbors who I knew would use them.  Then, I took my share and started dehydrating them.  Now, I have quite a bit of dehydrated potatoes to use in my pantry.   Today when I stopped to pick up a whole bunch of wax and green beans (slightly freezer burnt, but the chickens will enjoy them) she gave me a case of white corn-on-the-cob that was nice and fresh, telling me to enjoy! So, I’ll be cleaning and freezing corn the next couple days.

When my husband sees me dehydrating onions or freezing bananas, he calls it scavenging.  He really doesn’t even understand why I’m willing to pick up the scraps to feed to the critters.  On the other hand, I see it as being resourceful and frugal.  The amount of waste I see from the food bank is sad.  Part of the problem is that people who get food from the food bank either A: can’t use the fresh food because of their living situation (homeless, no stove, etc) or B: don’t want to take the time to prepare it  or C: Don’t know how to prepare it (schools don’t have home-economics classes, families don’t know how to cook anymore).   Another problem is that too often the donated food is donated when it is past the point of no return.  I wish that the stores would pull it from their shelves a bit sooner

Anyhow, yes, the food banks consider it trash, and while this is maybe a bit off of the whole “girls gone trashy”, it does contribute to my preparedness and frugal lifestyle.  If you have food banks in your town, find out what they do with their discarded items.  Maybe you can help them out and help yourself at the same time.

Dish Drainer Table and Storage

Posted: April 6, 2011 by peggylynn in Kitchen
Tags: , ,

While digging in the dumpster behind my favorite feed store I found this:

It was used to hold rake, axe, shovel, handles. Well my kitchen sink has no room for a dish drainer so I had a plan to make one from this stand. I turned it upside down so the solid part would be on top. Removed the slates in the middle as I didn’t need them. Slapped a little paint on it, used a spring from a screen door for a curtain rod and dug out one of my old kitchen curtains and I had a place for my dish drainer that fit perfectly by my sink. I also had a place to store my sugar and egg cartons out of sight. This project took a little over an hour and cost zero dollars. I just love my dumpster diving find!

Wine Glass Holder

Posted: March 30, 2011 by peggylynn in Kitchen

With the flu bug running its course here on the homestead I am a little late with my Wednesday post.  Hopefully I will be back to my crazy self by next week and have a bigger project to share. For now another quick and cheap one for you. Check out your hubby’s tool shed, garage, garden shed or wherever you keep tools and I am sure you will find a broken handled garden rake. We all seem to have them around thinking we will get a new handle one day. Well grab the head of that rake, clean it up a little but not too much as you want it to look old.  Put a nail or hook on the wall you want to display your wine glasses. The rake will sit right down on the nail or hook very securely. Hang those glasses on the forks of the garden rake and you can even hang a cork screw. I have mine hanging on the wall above the counter between the kitchen and diningroom. They are easy to grab when needed. Out of the way when not being used but look great and make a good conversation piece when guests stop by for a glass of wine. This project cost nothing as it was made with things already here around the homestead.  Now get on out there and find that rake… You know you really want to hang up those wine glasses!    Have a blessed night everyone, Peggy from Hidden Haven