Friday, June 11, 2010

SUPER SQUASH

Well good morning all my little chickadees! How are you doing this humid TGIF? I am so incredibly exhausted its not funny LOL. BUT despite the tired feeling, once I get up and get the blood flowing, it should be better. Right now, its shake out the cobwebs time! So what do you have planned for this exciting end of the week? I have to run down to Galveston, so I am thinking that if the forecast will be kind to us, taking the kids to the beach today. If that doesn’t pan out, it will be another day of cleaning and such… trying to get it done.

Well on the quest to make the world a more Frugal Friendly place, I have found another article with some interesting ideas to save you money. Now a few of these are super iffy in my book (like home haircuts LMAO… PLEASE take caution in things like this… can we handle a society full of chili bowls? LMAO! Kidding) But in a nutshell some of these ideas are pretty good… especially for the “first time frugaler” LOL!

10 Inventive Ways to Save
By Katy Marquardt

1. Clothing swap- Friends have been meeting, mingling, and exchanging their unwanted duds for decades, but many of today’s clothing swaps are more sophisticated meetups organized by self-professed “swapaholics.” Sites that organize local swaps include swaporamarama.com and clothingswap.com.

2. Lunch Clubs- You’re already forgoing restaurant takeout and brown-bagging it. Here’s another idea that’s been popping up in some offices: Team up with coworkers and take turns providing lunch for the group once a week. Make an extra casserole on Sunday, bring it to share on Monday, and voilà—a week of lunches for around $10.

3. Freeganism non-extremists- You don’t have to climb into a garbage bin. You don’t even have to get your hands dirty. Instead of buying clay pots for your container garden, ask your local nursery for its unwanted plastic ones. Day trip to the woods—or park—to forage for fresh herbs, or check sites like VeggieTrader.com, where gardeners offer up their surplus.

4. Get hitched on the cheap- Consider tying the knot in a national park: A permit for a hillside amphitheater in Rocky Mountain National Park, for instance, costs between $50 and $200, depending on the size of the party. Follow the ceremony with a picnic, and recruit a friend with a good camera—and a good eye—to take wedding photos.

5. Home haircuts and other DIY ideas- It’s back to basics for many creative savers, who are making everything from their own cleaning products and condiments to food for Fido. For some, even a trip to the barber is no longer a necessity. Others are performing basic fix-its around the house, such as plumbing work. Sites like Instructables.com can teach you how.

6. Make your own beer or wine- The basic supplies and ingredients will cost you, but making several gallons of beer or wine—which can be done in an afternoon—can be quite economical, says blogger Trent Hamm of thesimpledollar.com. He recommends turning it into a social event in which you and your friends split the costs—and the bounty.

7. Crowd buying- The concept: Local businesses offer their products or services at a huge discount—think $25 for $50 worth of salon services—but the deal is only good if enough people snap it up. The most well-known of the sites is Groupon.com, which lists daily deals in more than 40 metro markets.

8. Bartering for Beginners- Want to wade into the world of bartering? Start by reaching out via social networks like Facebook or Twitter, recommends Melissa Massello, founder of online magazine Shoestring. “If you’re a writer, ask if anyone needs résumé help, and what they can offer in return,” she says. Are you a yoga aficionado? A techie? Think about your skills to determine what you can offer.

9. Eat Lentils- Well, not just lentils, but they cost little and have tons of nutritional value. Jeff Yeager, author of The Ultimate Cheapskate's Roadmap to True Riches, recommends “eating lower on the food chain,” which means focusing on grains, legumes, and fresh produce, and spending no more than a dollar a pound.

10. Extreme Measures- Chew a half stick of gum at a time. Time your showers with a stopwatch. Use only a pea-size amount of toothpaste. “My take is that if it bugs your family and friends to the point that they tease you, it’s probably too extreme. But if not and it makes you happy, go for it,” says Massello.

Ok now let me ask you something. Are you going to be doing any inside crafting soon? Well if so, I have another cute recycled craft for you to try! If you are like me, you are always scrambling for a small piece of paper to jot a quick note down on… like something you need from the store, a phone number, etc. Well I have found some interesting notebook ideas to fit your dilemma.

Craft Idea of the Day: Handmade Notebooks or Scratchpads



Floppy Disk Notebook

1. Find the two squares that are in your floppy disks, on the opposite end from the silver slidy thing
(haha, you can tell that I was born in the age of DVD's and flash drives) Stick the keychain rings through these holes. Yay, you're halfway done!

2. Get three brads (from the scrapbooking section of a craft store) Glue them down to the inside of one of the floppy disks.

3. Cut paper to fit inside. Punch three holes along the top that will fit the brads you just glued down.

4. Stick the paper onto the brads, and fold the legs down. You're done!



Game Piece Notebook (a fellow blogspot posting from a talented young lady! Thanks for sharing!)

1. Start off by making a small notebook out of paper (take your pieces of paper, fold them in half, staple in the middle) and glue your game pieces to the front & back.

2. Next, take either a strip of sticky paper or a (scrapbooking) border sticker. Stick half of it down on the front side flip it over & stick the rest down on the back Trim off the excess paper/sticker.



Vinyl LP notebook

1. First you need to cut the record. This can be done with a saw or a sharp razor blade. Cut it so that it's a little bigger than A5 (aprox 1/2" at each side). You may need to saw the sides to get rid of any sharp bits.

2. Now you need to drill 3 holes. Two on the left side of the record for the ring binder hoops and one on the right in the center.

3. You don't have to but it's usually best to mount your record on a thick peice of card or plastic.

4. You now need to make a back for your notebook. If the record came with a cool sleeve then cut it up and use that for your back otherwise posters or anything else will do. Cut this to the same size as the record and then put the same 3 holes in again.

5. To make sure that nothing can fall out of your notebook thread the third hole (on the record and the back cover) with ribbon. This makes a nice little tie. Now all you have to do is decorate it.



Playing Card Notebook

1. Starting with the card, this will be our back sheet, mark where you want the hole studs to go.

2. Punch in the hole studs.

3. Do the same for the playing card.

4. Punch holes in to the sheets of paper in the correct places.

5. You will now have your three piles. Open up the jump rings using needle nose pliers.

6. Slip the jump rings through the piles and then close them up.

Aren’t those pretty cool? This just shows you that you can make notebooks out of just about anything! I have seen them from the pictures/insides of old cassette cases, photographs, and tons more as well as what I showed you today. They also make for good little giveaway gifts… like homemade stationary kits, office gifts, stocking stuffers, etc.

Ok now on to your most favorite part of the blog…. Ok, ok maybe it’s one of MY most favorite parts LOL… FOOD! Today I want to bring you a FARMER FAVORITE that is easily accessible just about anywhere you go… SQUASH! There are at least 15 or 16 different kinds of squash that I know of… but by no means am I a food “genius” like my kids seem to think LOL! So try a new kind of squash… you might like it! Here are a couple of more “popular” squashes to work with today!



Spaghetti Squash

Ingredients

1 spaghetti squash, halved lengthwise and seeded
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups chopped tomatoes
3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
3 tablespoons sliced black olives
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a baking sheet.

Place spaghetti squash cut sides down on the prepared baking sheet, and bake 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a sharp knife can be inserted with only a little resistance. Remove squash from oven, and set aside to cool enough to be easily handled.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Saute onion in oil until tender. Add garlic, and saute for 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, and cook only until tomatoes are warm.

Use a large spoon to scoop the stringy pulp from the squash, and place in a medium bowl. Toss with the sauteed vegetables, feta cheese, olives, and basil. Serve warm.



Butternut Squash & Rosemary Pizza

Ingredients

1 cup thinly sliced onion
1/2 butternut squash - peeled, seeded, and thinly sliced
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
salt and black pepper to taste
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 (16 ounce) package refrigerated pizza crust dough
1 tablespoon cornmeal
2 tablespoons grated Asiago or Parmesan cheese

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C). Place sliced onion and squash in a roasting pan. Sprinkle with rosemary, salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil; toss to coat.

Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until onions are lightly browned and squash is tender; set aside.

Increase oven temperature to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). On a floured surface, roll each ball of dough into an 8 inch round. Place the rounds on a baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal (you may need 2 baking sheets depending on their size). Distribute squash mixture over the two rounds and continue baking for 10 minutes, checking occasionally, or until the crust is firm.

Sprinkle with cheese and remaining tablespoon olive oil. Cut into quarters, and serve.

Well folks, that’s all she wrote for me today. I have had a heaping helping of happy fun with you all during our early morning chat today. I hope you found my entry fun and entertaining and informative. I also hope that you will return tomorrow for more of the same enjoyment. Remember to be safe in your journeys today and this weekend in whatever you find yourself doing! Until tomorrow… HUGS!

3 comments:

  1. Debbie "MOM"June 11, 2010 at 11:28 AM

    Squash, I love squash. All kinds. And now a days you can buy squash year round. I even eat some kinds of squash like yellow crookneck and zuchinni raw in my salads sometimes. Its a versatile veggie and can be cooked almost any way you could think of. My personal favorite is battered and deep fried, grilled, or baked with a little butter and brown sugar on it. OH SO YUMMY!!!
    Some of those ways to save are out there. Come on, is somebody really going to chew only HALF a piece of gum? I chew two at a time myself. And making your own beer. I think it would be cheaper, if your a beer drinker, to just buy it. Making it yourself should be a hobby, not a money saver. I have seen some of those shows where people claim to be frugal but to me they seem a little over the edge. Using one square of toilet tissue? Am I hearing things? I will be wasteful when it comes to that! THATS JUST GROSS!! And I know a lot of chefs make their own stock, but I gross out every time I think about fish or seafood stock. They put the heads, guts, and bones in there! YUCK!!!! I say some things dont need to be made frugal. There are times when expense or frugality should be the last thing to consider.
    OK. Got more doctors appointments today so til next time.....

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  2. Another great article today. You find the greatest stuff. Hope you are having fun at the beach! I've never had butternut and spaghetti squash, but I think I will try them cuz these look good. Thanks

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  3. lol one square of t paper is not enought wipe my nose , not to speak of other places lol
    jean

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