I got a huge kick out of this article this morning: 20 Signs That You Were Raised By TRUE Money-Savers | Wise Bread. My family didn’t do all of their signs, but we did do some of them. I often say that I come by my innate cheapness honestly. I commented on the Wise Bread site about a couple of examples:
In the United States, tomorrow is Thanksgiving – the start to the holiday season that rolls right through Easter in spring, with all the multitudinous accompanying opportunities to overindulge in order to take our minds off the dark days of winter. In honor of the holiday, here are a variety of articles on taking care of yourself through this weekend and into the winter holidays:
This afternoon and evening, I’ve gained my 15 minutes of fame with Denver’s Channel 9 television. My daughter and I participated in a local reporter’s story about shopping healthy — and on a budget — in these tough economic times. You can find the story and video at KUSA-TV’s Web site here. If you’ve found my blog from that story, welcome! You might be interested in a few previous posts that I mentioned in my full interview with Channel 9.
I’ve meant to make my own mayonnaise for some time, but it took something of a crisis to drive me to it.
In May, I wrote an article about my savings at Costco (those savings clock in at $500 per year). That post received a comment critical of Costco for not accepting food stamps at its stores, and I followed up with the news that the chain would accept food stamps at two of its New York City-area stores. Now, Reuters reports that Costco will accept food stamps nationwide. Costco does have an annual membership fee ($50) that might put it out of reach for many food stamp recipients. However, accepting food stamps puts those warehouse savings in reach for people who are accepting food stamp assistance while they are between jobs, but who have an existing membership; those who share a membership (and the bulk-buy savings) with other households; or those who receive a membership for a gift, as well as those who choose to invest in a membership.
Plenty of information on living cheap & green on the World Wide Web this week. Here are a few of the highlights:
A local business publication, ColoradoBiz magazine, has been publishing a series online about a not-so-businesslike topic: Managing editor Mike Taylor ate only foods grown in his own garden for the month of August. The conclusion to his “urban locavore” experiment was published here this week. From that page, you can skim through the previous articles, too.
Speaking of butter, as we were earlier this week — At last! I have found something to do with radishes.
A little bit about butter — why it is yellow, if it is bad for you, and just what “European butter” means.
In a nutshell, unless you live in Florida: Not very. This week, I was touched in two ways by Tropicana’s new effort to tell the world it’s green. First, I got an e-mail from some cousins in California telling us that they had used their OJ code to protect 100 square feet of rainforest in Mlle. Cheap’s name. That led us to click on the link in the e-mail and learn more about Tropicana (PepsiCo’s) sustainability efforts. Then, this morning, I saw this post on yesterday’s Green Daily, titled What is Your OJ Doing for the Planet?.
Today I saw this story in my local Denver Business Journal online, titled “WhiteWave shifts from organic to natural soybeans.” I’m not sure if you can read the entire story if you are not a subscriber, but here’s the focus: With the cost of producing organic soybeans on the rise and consumer demand flattening, Broomfield-based WhiteWave Foods Co. — a subsidiary of Dean Foods of Dallas — ditched organic in favor of conventional soybeans in all but three of its Silk Soymilk products.
If all has gone well, by the time you read this we are getting home from a camping trip this week. We picked camping for a less-expensive vacation getaway, giving us a chance to enjoy our beautiful state of Colorado.
Meanwhile, here are a few good links from last week …
Dealbusters: How much does it cost to make your own frugal, homemade, instant oatmeal?
The more we talk about brewing, the more it seems that half of our friends have a carboy fermenting in their basement. Do you?
Just about three and a half months ago, I published a lengthy post on the way I’ve been making bread, using a melding of techniques from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day and no-knead recipes. Since that time, I’ve kept on baking, and I wondered if you have, too.
NPR recently solicited gourmet meals for a family of 4 for less than $10. Viewers submitted recipes in the comments section, now 318 strong (and closed to new submissions). If I were to pick our family’s favorite cheap, satisfying dinner, it would have to be the Japanese savory cabbage pancake, okonomiyaki ….
This morning’s newspaper delivery brought an interesting little article about urban homesteading in The Denver Post, titled “Green (1/8th) Acres sprout in the city.” With its “urban Gothic” photo, it caught my eye, and even more so when I realized that the female member of the profiled couple is in my knitting/spinning group. (She noted that the reporter didn’t write about her knitting, spinning and sewing her own clothes, all just as worthy of the “homestead” title as growing your own food.)
Chicken soup, chicken skin and schmaltz … making the most of free-range chicken thighs!
After Colorado had a dry winter, then a very warm January and February, then a snowy March and April, I think we might be able to say it’s actually spring. This wrap-up comes to you after a day of 83-degree temperatures, squirrels marauding at the bird feeder and a cherry tree in bloom.
Gardening season is getting underway around the United States — from those in the South getting summer plants rolling, to those in the North finally able to stick a shovel in the ground. But with President Obama promoting “victory gardens” where Americans grow some of their own food (to promote thrift, food safety and a do-it-yourself ethic), it’s all too easy to join many other “green” trends where “green” refers to environmentally friendly solutions, but also to laying out a lot of money for something people used to just do.