Tuesday, December 26, 2023

8 Rules to Follow When Choosing Interior Décor

I have written in the past about designing different rooms in my home so that it is a welcoming and warm place that makes me happy to be there. I used to think this was impossible unless you were wealthy, but I discovered that there are many ways to decorate and design your home within a strict budget and still just as beautiful. Here are some ways you can do that.

Decorating your home can be an exciting process, but it’s not as easy as it may first seem. In order to create a beautiful and aesthetically pleasing space, you must understand a lot about interior design.

From color schemes to furniture placement – it can be overwhelming if you don’t know where to begin. Thankfully it’s not impossible if you plan ahead.

Interested in learning more? Then keep on reading! Below we are going to discuss eight rules that you should follow when choosing interior décor for your home.

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

My Frugal Accomplishments This Past Week

I'm a little pressed for time now, but I just wanted to share some frugal things I did within the past 7 days that I'm proud of myself for, most of it having been done today.

4 days ago I drove a friend and her son to another city to check out a school for him, and she paid me for the gas and my time. While I was there, I had about an hour to kill, and I'd seen a few advertisements saying that a certain chain of stores was having tomatoes, butternut squash, cabbage, and one other thing (I don't remember what) on sale for 12 cents a pound! I knew where I'd spend my free time. They ended up having great sales, and not only did I get those vegetables that were 12 cents a pound, there were a bunch more also much cheaper than I can buy them locally, and many other things on sale. I only got what we needed, pretty much everything that I purchased was on sale, and I can't wait to share that shop with you.

3 days ago I had some zucchini that were absolutely on their last legs, as well as some peppers that were partially spoiled, so I cut off the yucky parts and added lentils, plus whatever was left from a can of tomato sauce I had in my fridge, and made a bunch of delicious lentil vegetable soup.

As usual, I made my sports drink, that I drink 3-4 liters of every day. Entirely from scratch.

Then two days ago my kids made homemade pizza. 

Yesterday I went to the store to pick up milk and cheese, since they used it up making pizza, and I saw that cheese was being sold for only 2/3 of the price I usually can get that cheese on sale, and there wasn't a limit to how many you can buy or a requirement to spend a certain amount in the store, so I bought 3 kilos and froze 2. I should have bought more, but oh well.

Then today I did the following:

I took leftover rice that was about a week old, so I knew I should cook it before I serve it to extend its shelf life, and I sauted it up with some veggies as well as lemongrass that I grew, and some dehydrated shitake mushrooms that I rehydrated.

I took the liquid from the rehydrated mushrooms, added a sweet potato that was a little funny looking and needed using up, some leftover carrot salad that I found a bit too spicy to eat plain, some leftover rice noodles, lemongrass from my garden, and sea beet from my garden, and made it into a delicious Asian (possibly Vietnamese) inspired soup.

And last but not least- I had a bunch of apples that were wrinkly and old looking, some with yucky parts, that my kids didn't want to eat, and I cut off the yucky parts and cut them up and made them into a delicious gluten free apple crumble.

I'm gonna pat myself on the back real hard now.

What frugal things have you done lately? Anything you're especially proud of?

Thursday, December 14, 2023

Exploring NYC on a Budget: Tips for a Frugal Family Trip

Growing up in Cleveland, Ohio, I traveled to New York many times, as my grandparents, aunts and uncles almost all lived there. But we didn't really do touristy things there, other than trips to the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty. Then I lived in New York for a year right before I got married and moved abroad to where I live now, but in my year there I did no touristy things because I was busy working, going to school, etc... So I would love to actually experience New York as a tourist, and maybe I will one day, ideally with my children. If you, like myself, would want to go to visit New York, you can spend a lot of money there, but there also are ways to do it cheaply. Mommy Poppins is a site I learned about and it has so many cheap and free activities to do there with families, and there's also NYC For Free plus so many other places. Here are some tips about how to plan your trip there frugally. Have fun!

New York City, the Big Apple, is a dream destination for many travelers. From iconic landmarks like Times Square and the Statue of Liberty to its vibrant arts scene and diverse culinary offerings, there's no shortage of things to see and do in the city that never sleeps.

However, visiting NYC with your family can quickly add up, making it essential to find ways to save money without sacrificing the experience. In this article, we'll share valuable tips on how to save money when exploring NYC with your loved ones.

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

Where Can You Buy Delta 8 THC Products Online

I got a cannabis license because of medical reasons- chronic pain is the one I was given it for, but I find it helpful for mental health issues as well. However it can be a pain in the rear to get a license for medical marijuana, so if you need an alternative delta thc might be an option for you.

If you’re a cannabis enthusiast, you might have heard of Delta 8 THC, a compound found in the hemp plant that’s catching attention for its potential benefits. Unlike Delta 9 THC, it’s legal and offers a milder high, making it a popular alternative for those who want to experience the effects of THC without the associated anxiety and paranoia. That being said, with so many manufacturers and distributors out there, finding a reliable source to buy Delta 8 THC products can be overwhelming.

Here, we’ve compiled a list of the best places to buy delta 8 thc products at best price online so you can shop with confidence. Before you start browsing the web for online stores that sell Delta 8 THC, it’s crucial to check if it’s legal in your state. The federal government does not currently list Delta 8 THC as a controlled substance, but it still resides in a legal grey area. As a result, some states have banned it, while others haven’t implemented any explicit regulations. It’s your responsibility to understand your state’s laws regarding Delta 8 THC before considering a purchase. Being aware of the rules can save you from any legal issues or potential consequences in the future. So, make sure to do your research beforehand!

Monday, December 11, 2023

Some Free Food I Got and How I Used It

I love getting free food. (Who doesn't?) The other week I was lucky, because after a local charity organization finished giving out the food they brought to the recipients, anyone was able to come take what they wanted, and my friend Ewa let me know that they had some great stuff. I'm so grateful that I have a car that going to pick up things is not even a question, it's just an extra 10 minutes out of my time to get a lot of great stuff.

They had a lot, and I mean a LOT, of quark cheese. It's this soft cheese that I guess you can compare to Greek yogurt, both in terms of taste and texture, but not quite. I'm honestly not the biggest fan of it (in addition to it bothering my stomach) but my kids enjoy it somewhat. But in my opinion, the best way of all is using it in other recipes, which my kids do enjoy, so I got some. These were not sold in their usual tubs, and instead were sold in bags of 1.5 kg, which was a lot. I decided to take 3 of them.

They had a lot, and I mean a lot, of avocados. Some were mushy and gross, but many were perfectly ripe, and if left at all, would become overripe and gross. So I knew that I could take as many avocadoes as I could either use within 2 days or figure out a way to process them to stop them from ripening.

Sunday, December 10, 2023

Unleashing Potential: The Art and Science of Play-Based Learning for a Brilliant Tomorrow

Play is an important part of being human. In order for someone you have a happy and healthy life, even as an adult, play is important. Even animals play- it's important for their development and how they learn. As a former homeschooler and unschooler, I know how much kids learn via unstructured play and how much they enjoy learning that way. Here's some more about this very important concept.

In the exciting world of play-based learning, where every giggle, every building block, and every exploration paves the way for a brilliant tomorrow. In this article, we delve into the art and science behind unleashing the potential of young minds through the innovative approach of play-based learning, with a special focus on the transformative initiatives at Zebra Early Learning Centre.

Thursday, December 7, 2023

Trying to DIY Professional Looking Tailoring For My Son's Pants

My sons care about looking good and having stylish clothing. While I'm happy to take them clothing shopping to find something that suits their taste and my budget, they don't have the most typical body shape, which makes it harder to find clothes that have the right fit. They're tall and thin, with their height mainly in their legs, which means that even with slim fit pants, the waist can often end up being far too big if the legs are long enough. Yes, a belt helps, but sometimes because the waist is just so much bigger, the belt ends up bunching up the waistband and it looks weird.

Recently when I was shopping with my boys, my sons were trying to decide if they wanted to keep looking for pants with a better fit, even if they were more expensive (which meant less money on other clothes). My son had a pair of pants he'd bought a few days before that were big enough on him that when cinched with a belt, they bunched up weirdly, something that he didn't like since he wanted to be able to wear them with his shirt tucked in, but he wouldn't with the waist like that. 

I examined the seams on it and told him that I could tailor the pants to make the waistband the right size, and he agreed that I could do that. It was a little intimidating for me to offer to do that for my son, since it wouldn't just entail ripping open the seams, but actually cutting the fabric of the waistband. Additionally, since my sons care about how their clothing looks, I couldn't just simply take it in in the easiest way possible; I'd have to open up the seams all the way down, far down enough that I could adjust it without making a pleat or other bend within the seam. I needed to do it as perfectly as possible, so it looked unaltered, just fresh from the factory.

Friday, December 1, 2023

5 Habits That Are Making You Sleep Poorly and How to Fix Them

Do you sleep well? I have a hard time shutting my brain off to go to sleep, but once I'm asleep I'm out like a light and can and do sleep through anything. I don't wake up refreshed, unfortunately, due to chronic fatigue, unless I get over 12-14 hours of sleep. But for many, the issue isn't as drastic as mine. Here are some things you can do to help improve your night's sleep.

If you find yourself lying awake at night, staring at the ceiling and struggling to fall asleep, it may be time to evaluate your sleep habits. Many common habits can negatively impact sleep quality without you even realizing it. Fortunately, making a few simple changes to your daily routine can get your sleep schedule back on track. Read on to learn about five habits that may be ruining your sleep and how to fix them.

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Saving Seeds for the Kiddos' Future

Parents want the best for their children and give them the greatest opportunities to start off their adulthood on the right foot. But that means starting now and not just waiting for the future. As in Aesop's tale of the ants and the grasshopper, saving up now means that you'll have what to eat in the future, even if playing is more fun... Saving up for the future is also like gardening. Here's how.

Planning for your little ones' future is sort of like starting a garden from scratch. You don't need a whole lot to get started—just some seeds, which are like the few bucks you tuck away now and then. Maybe you open a college fund or just start a little savings stash. Every bit you save is planting a seed for their education and stability down the road. It's about the small things you do now, like maybe teaching them to save their allowance or showing them how to budget for that video game they want. You're laying down the roots for their financial smarts.

Monday, November 27, 2023

Reclaiming the Word "Fat" and other "Bad" Words

Fabulously fat me, dressed up as Morticia

I needed to go clothing shopping and asked in a local Facebook group where I could find a clothing store for fat women. And in addition to a lot of helpful suggestions I got so many comments about my choice of language.
  • "Plus size women. Not fat women."
  • "Why the term Fat women? Larger sized women please!"
  • "Can't we just say plus-sized? So much less demeaning."
I specifically use the term fat.

I am fat.

At  5'9 and 285 lbs, fat is a perfectly accurate descriptor. I'm fat. I'm tall. I'm blue eyed, straight brown haired, lightly freckled, myopic (need glasses), and a woman. Those describe me. They are all facts. Descriptors. None of them are either positive or negative. They are neutral. 

Descriptors are only negative if you make them that way. Otherwise, they are neutral.

Friday, November 24, 2023

Ten Tips for Talking to Your Child About A New Sibling

Navigating the conversation about a new sibling with your kids can be a bit like decoding a complex puzzle. This post explores the nuances of discussing the addition of a new family member. While my own parenting journey might not involve expanding the brood, I've learned a thing or two about fostering understanding and acceptance in the midst of life changes. So, let's delve into the practical aspects of having "the talk" with your little ones and create a roadmap for smoothing the transition.

There are so many considerations to hold in your mind at once when preparing yourself for a new baby that discussing it with your existing child can be easy to put off. No matter how old they are, talking to them about their new sibling is the best way to set up a positive relationship with the new baby.

Friday, November 17, 2023

7 Decluttering Tips for Busy Moms

Do you need a no-nonsense guide on decluttering for the overwhelmed? If the daily chaos of toys, laundry, and random odds and ends has you feeling a bit suffocated, you're in good company. I get it. In this blog post, we'll tackle decluttering with practical tips that fit the reality of our busy lives. So, if the idea. of a minimalist haven seems like an unattainable dream, stick around. The goal is order, without the overwhelm.

Being a mom is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world. But between work, school drop-offs and pick-ups, after-school activities, meal prep, and more, life can get hectic for moms! Keeping a tidy home amidst the chaos of daily life is no easy feat. Clutter can quickly take over, leaving you feeling overwhelmed.

The good news is there are many effective ways to tackle clutter and keep your home organized. As a busy mom, a little decluttering each day goes a long way towards maintaining order. Here are seven tips to help you declutter your home and free up more time and space for what matters most to you.

Friday, November 10, 2023

I'm Baaaaaaaaaaaaaack!!!!!!!

This time last week I woke up to horrifying messages from so many people. My Facebook page was sharing essentially pornographic stories, with links to a porn website if you clicked on them. I tried to go to my page to delete it, but I was completely locked out of my page. It wasn't considered something of mine anymore, I had zero access to it- just the same amount of access that any of you have.

I was horrified and upset and so many other things. I didn't know how to fix it. I tried reporting it to Facebook. I mobilized my circles to please report the facebook page. Everyone kept telling me to change my password but that didn't work since the page wasn't connected to my account anymore.

Saturday, November 4, 2023

Don't Wait Too Late for Life Insurance

If you're like me, you probably don't want to think too much about death and what happens after we die. We're young and hope to live a long life, so why plan for our deaths just now? And besides, it's expensive, complicated, and just feels irrelevant. But unfortunately, disasters happen, and people die way before their time; unfortunately too many people in my circles have been dealing with that lately. My friend, for example, lost her brother in law in a plane crash, and he left behind many children. Fortunately, he had a good life insurance policy, so my friend's sister doesn't need to worry about the finances now in addition to all the rest of the hell they're going through at the moment.  Life insurance is one of the most important financial decisions you can make for yourself and your loved ones. And I'm going to tell you why.

First of all, what is life insurance? Life insurance is a contract between you and an insurance company that pays out a lump sum of money to your beneficiaries if you die during the term of the policy. The money can be used for anything, such as paying off debts, covering funeral costs, or providing income for your family.

There are different types of life insurance, but the most common and affordable one is term life insurance. Term life insurance covers you for a specific period of time, usually 10, 20, or 30 years. You pay a fixed amount every month, and if you die within the term, your beneficiaries get the payout. If you outlive the term, the policy expires and you get nothing.

Why is term life insurance beneficial? Term life insurance is beneficial because it offers a lot of coverage for a low cost. You can get hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars of coverage for a fraction of what you would pay for a permanent life insurance policy. Term life insurance is also flexible and simple. You can choose the amount and duration of coverage that suits your needs and budget. You don't have to worry about any cash value, investment options, or fees that come with permanent life insurance policies. 

Friday, November 3, 2023


Oh my gosh, I want to throw up.
Someone hacked my blog's Facebook page and kicked me off as site admin so now I have no access to it...
And they're posting sexually explicit things on it. (On the page's stories.)
I don't know what to do.
But I wanted to:
1) Let you know.
2) Let you know I know.
3) Apologize for you having to see those stuff.
4) Ask for help if you know how to help me with this.

Thanks so much.

Thursday, October 26, 2023

Hello Car! Again...

Very excited with my brand new (to me) car!

This post has been a long time coming. 

I literally started writing it over a month ago, which was more than a week after buying my car, but there were a lot of emotions involved in writing this and it took me quite a while. More on that in a little bit.

So for those who didn't see my post in September (writing about what happened in August), basically after 6 months (minus a couple of days) of buying my last car, the engine completely conked out (dangerously, along the highway in a dangerous area, but fortunately we all came out unscathed). It was really, really, really disappointing and frustrating, and I had a lot of guilt about it, which is why it took me a few weeks to write it up. 

I blamed myself for it (something I'm very good at), blamed myself for maybe not being responsible enough, for getting a bad car, for not doing enough research... but fortunately people I care about talked some sense into me, and reassured me that it was not my fault, that it just was a case of bad luck. This had been after months of recurrent leaking near the engine, which was suspected to have been caused by the engine, but there was no way of knowing. So having paid to fix up the car for that, and other various issues, in addition to the money I spent on it... was just a huge bummer. Especially since I'd paid to fix it up some more just a few weeks before it conked out.

My mechanic, who is a sweet guy, at least gave me a refund on the new battery that he'd just replaced. He also helped me find someone to purchase the trashed car for parts. While he could have replaced the engine, it wasn't worth doing in a car that was 15 years old, given that the engine would cost more than half of what I originally paid for the car.

Lastly, I felt a lot of regret that I didn't pay for insurance that would pay for repairs if damaged, or a new car if totaled or stolen. I paid for mandatory insurance which covers injuries to another party, and extra insurance for damages to another vehicle, but not comprehensive insurance. I hadn't gotten around to doing that, because it costs more money and is more complicated to get, and I felt I screwed myself over. However, I found out that it never would have covered an engine dying, only damages in an accident, so I was able to let go of that guilt.

So now, on to the new car.

Sunday, October 1, 2023

Yay! Free Books!

I want to apologize for not having posted for far too long. I feel terrible about it, like I've let you down big time. I am going to try to be more on top of posting- I'm chock full of ideas for posts, with many partially written posts, but I need to actually find the time and headspace to write, not to mention having my body not hurt too much to sit up and write.

Anyhow, on top of that, my family and I have been going through a lot lately. We're ok, but it's complicated.

My kids were out of school for a few weeks (they finally all started school again this past week), and while they were home bored, my daughters decided to redo their bedroom, something they've wanted to do since their big brother moved into his bedroom that we built last year. 

Speaking of that, a friend reminded me that I never posted a final post about his room... and the reason I didn't was that I was waiting until it was completely finished, but I still haven't managed to put up his loft bed (my body hurting, lack of time with my sons home to help me while I also had energy, needing to find the right equipment, etc...) so he's been sleeping on a mattress on the floor this past year... But maybe I'll do a nearly final picture even with the mattress on the floor.

In order to redo my daughters' bedroom (pretty much using only what we had in the house already) they needed to get rid of a lot of books that were on their bookshelf. Most of those books were books that they outgrew or that never appealed to them. So we sat down and sorted them into a few piles.

One pile was garbage- broken books, or other bad quality things that just weren't usable anymore.

Another pile was of books we wanted to keep on the shelf.

Another pile was books that no one is reading now, but we (or I) have fond memories of, some of them still from my childhood.

And then the rest went into the giveaway pile.

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Super Simple Homemade Sports and Rehydration Drink Recipe

Important update:

I am reposting this post. Unfortunately, too late, I realized a mistake I made with my post, and I feel bad for anyone that used my recipe and didn't get the exact benefits needed from it, because of my mistake. Reposting this with the corrections will hopefully get more people to see these needed changes.

When I made this recipe as previously written, I was peeing a million times a day. Ok, slight exaggeration, but I wasn't retaining liquid, which was the reason I was drinking this in the first place. Since I need to retain more liquid to have a higher blood volume to combat my POTS, I don't just need more fluids, I need fluids with salt. And this recipe did not have enough salt. I added more salt and then adjusted the other ingredients so it tastes decent. You might not like the taste as much as when it had less salt, but the point of this is effectiveness, not just taste.

I have an embarrassing confession. I sweat. A lot. Probably 3 or 4 times as much as the average person. I'm not entirely sure of the cause, but it means that I am constantly losing large amounts of both fluids and salts, as much as an athlete would, even when I'm not doing anything particularly physically exertive. In addition to that, I have dysautonomia, specifically Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome, something that is usually comorbid with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS), which I also have. This means that my body doesn't know how to regulate blood flow, which causes a large variety of different symptoms, but it is most pronounced when changing positions (that's what postural orthostatic tachycardia means- heart rate affected by your posture) which can cause really bad dizziness.

To treat the symptoms of POTS, there are lots of different recommendations. Drinking really large quantities and having a lot of salt are two extremely helpful ones, because salt causes water retention, and combined with drinking more, that increases your blood volume, which is one of the biggest ways to help symptoms. 

I don't know about you, but drinking salt water isn't something that is particularly appealing to me. I've drunk large amounts of water in the past but it made me nauseous. I've even gotten water poisoning one time after a hike (it was terrible) and it only went away when I had something carby and salty. I try to remember to drink but when it is just water it doesn't happen enough. And it doesn't really help my symptoms anyhow, because if you drink water but don't have the salt, you just pee it all out and it doesn't help with the blood volume.

Enter sports drinks.

They're basically drinks that are meant to help replenish what you lose when you sweat. Liquid. Salt. Electrolytes. And sugar. Not always sugar. But sugar helps because carbohydrates help facilitate sodium and water absorption. My friend started buying powdered Gatorade and I started drinking it to see if it helped with my dizziness and exhaustion issues and the difference was remarkable. I was much more of a functional human being when I drank Gatorade. However, locally you can only buy ready made Gatorade, which is quite pricey if you drink 3-4 liters a day. I ordered it online internationally, and it was terrific. But then the store raised their shipping prices prohibitively, and ordering it didn't make sense anymore. I tried ordering rehydration packs from iherb (not Gatorade but a similar idea) but they still haven't arrived. But my Gatorade was finished. And I needed to have something to help me rehydrate that wasn't just water.

I have a sports drink recipe here, called Laborade (which I based on a different recipe I found online years ago) but it calls for a gallon of water, which is a lot to make at once, and I don't really have any good container to mix that large of an amount in. And I wanted something I could make to scale. So I experimented to see if I could make that into a powder version, using citric acid, and some fruity tea bags... and it was just terrible. It tasted so bad that I didn't want to drink it, nor did anyone else. This was after multiple attempts with different permutations.

But I was out of Gatorade and I needed something. So I experimented. What if I made lemonade, but didn't make it as strong, and then added some salt to that? It worked. Then I added tea bags for flavorings. It also worked great. I tried playing around with the amounts of sugar, salt, and lemon... but increasing the salt just made it taste yucky.

Eventually, I found the perfect ratio for me. And it works just as well as Gatorade, I think. I mean it's not like I did a scientific study with this, but drinking 4 liters a day of this sports drink definitely helps a lot, and much more than that amount of water, and it is more pleasant to drink so I don't minimize my drinking.

Thursday, September 14, 2023

The Financial Aftermath of a Car Accident: 7 Things to Know

Having lost my car to engine failure last month, car issues have been on my mind. In my case, I didn't lose my car because of an accident, but I know just how stressful suddenly not having a car is. And I've been in a bad car accident a few years ago in a rental car and I know how difficult it is in so many ways, financially, emotionally, etc... I hope you are never in a car accident, but in case you are, here are some things you need to know about the financial aftermath.

Getting in a car accident can be truly life-altering, and one of the greatest and most far-reaching impacts they can have is on your finances.

The aftermath of a car accident (especially a more severe one) touches so many facets of your life. From medical bills to paying for lawyers and even purchasing a new vehicle – there’s a lot of spending involved, whether you were at fault or not. If you’ve been in an incident recently and want to start thinking about the long-term costs and how you might be impacted over time, here’s what you need to know.

Immediate Financial Impact

Starting off with the initial hit, which you’ll face directly after being in a car accident. Initially, you’ll probably only be faced with medical bills. If you’ve been seriously injured, you’ll need to be admitted to hospital, and depending on where you live and what insurance you have, etc., you might need to pay those costs up front. However, you’re able to claim compensation, you might be able to get this money back.

Another financial knock that you’ll face directly after the incident is the cost of the damage to your car. If there’s any serious damage, you’ll need to have the vehicle repaired or even buy a new one. However, this can also be mitigated by insurance or claiming for compensation.

Keeping Your Relationship Romantic Through the Years: A Brief Guide

Someone I care about closely has a significant anniversary today and this topic feels especially relevant. For some people, like myself, relationships end because they weren't healthy and needed to end. Other people manage to stay together in a loving relationship "until death do us part". (A woman I knew for years just passed away yesterday after 55 years of marriage to her husband with whom she was very close.) And then there are the relationships in between, that don't have significant problems, but couples just... sort of drift apart. That doesn't have to happen. There are ways to keep your relationship strong, vibrant, and healthy for years, even with all the complications that life throws your way. Here are some ideas on how to do that.

Romance is one of the most incredibly important and beautiful elements of any relationship. While it might change shape over the years, it is important to do what you can to keep the romance in your relationship alive and well.

Fortunately, there are plenty of things you can do to help keep your relationship romantic as you and your partner build a life together.

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Goodbye Dear Car of Mine

I'm having a hard time emotionally right now. Confused. Anxious. Stressed. Sad. Shame. Hopeless. And lots more to boot.

Last week I was driving home from an outing along a highway, and about a 30 minute drive from my house the car started making some noise. 5 minutes later I realized that I couldn't go as fast as the speed limit- the car started making strange noises and the RPM went up really high when I tried going above 80 kmh. Then I couldn't go faster than 70. Then I couldn't go faster than 60. I was on a stretch of road that really wasn't safe to break down on, and I knew that there was a town about 5 kilometers away. I prayed that we'd be able to at least make it there before we couldn't drive anymore.

We finally got to the entrance of the town, and after I stopped at the traffic light to turn into the town, I couldn't get the car to move forward. I stepped off the brakes and the car started rolling backward, downhill, even with my foot on the gas. I parked and put on my hazards and tried to call emergency roadside service, and they told me that based on what I told them, there was no point in calling a volunteer to come help since there was nothing they could do, and I'd just need to call a tow truck. I had my passenger get out of the car and get help to push the car out of the middle of the road and into the town limits. My son and 2 other guys pushed the car while it was in neutral, and I was able to drive it into the town and park it at the side of the road.

Monday, September 4, 2023

How Clean Gutters Can Save You Money in the Long Run

I honestly don't know so much about gutters. I'm not sure we even have them in our country. But growing up we had them. I know that some people collect rainwater with rain barrels under their gutters. But that's the extent of my knowledge of gutters. So I'll let this reader share why, if you have gutters, you should clean them regularly to save you money.

Gutters are an essential part of any home's drainage system, yet they often go unnoticed until a problem arises. Neglecting gutter maintenance can lead to costly repairs and damage to your property. In this article, we will explore why keeping your gutters clean is crucial and how it can save you money in the long run.

Sunday, September 3, 2023

How to Teach Your Child About Cryptocurrency

In many cases, adults know more about technology and technology related things than their children. In some cases, like mine, my son knows so much and teaches me, including pretty much everything I know about cryptocurrency. If you're in the opposite situation and you want to teach your children about this, here are some ways to help you do that.

Teaching your child about cryptocurrency and how you can trade or make a purchase with it can help your children make smart financial decisions in the future while instilling a sense of investment. When teaching your child about this emerging financial technology, start simple, use examples, emphasize security, make it relatable, and encourage curiosity. Let's explore some interactive ways to teach your children about cryptocurrency.

Friday, September 1, 2023

Greek Purslane Salad Recipe -- Salata Horiatiki Me Glistrida -- Foraged, Frugal, and Delicious

Purslane has long been a favorite foraged plant of mine ever since I learned about foraging it over 12 years ago. Unfortunately, as the years go by, I find it less and less, which makes me sad. I found purslane for literally the first time this year this past Tuesday, and it made me so excited. I couldn't wait to use it in my kitchen. Purslane has so many good uses, but I like it best raw, because then I feel its unique taste and texture shine, whereas when you cook it it just tastes like slightly slimy slightly sour green beans, and I'd rather just eat green beans then. 

I am trying to increase the healthy fats in my diet, as well as salt (more on that in another post), and I decided to combine those with purslane to make a terrific salad. This basically is just Greek salad, with the addition of purslane, a commonly found green in Greece as well as the rest of the world. Greek salad is called horiatiki in Greek (meaning from the village), and according to this blogger, probably was originally made with purslane, called γλυστριδα, written glistrida in English but pronounced glee-sthree-tha. This version is called salata horiatiki me glistrida, is something you can find in Greek cuisine, especially in places like Crete, according to my Cretian friend Vera, though in Crete they would add rusks, sort of like croutons, but something I wouldn't add because of gluten.

This recipe is quite easy to make, gluten free, allergy-friendly other than dairy, low and is quite frugal too. It is a terrific refreshing summer salad, and is filling enough to make a meal on its own or with a side of some rustic bread.

Greek Purslane Salad Recipe -- Glistrida Horiatiki -- Foraged, Frugal, and Delicious

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

How Our Nervous System Shapes Our Mental Landscape

As someone with mental illnesses and in therapy for a while now, the topic of how brains work is a fascinating thing. I've learned about trauma and how it is kept in the brain, how the brain handles information, as well as more animalistic parts of our brain. The brain is a very fascinating part of us, that is what is allowing us to read this post, but so many of us don't know much about how the brain actually works. If you'd like to learn more about this fascinating part of us, read on.

The human central nervous system (CNS) undergoes a complex process of development that is shared among mammals. However, certain aspects of neurodevelopment in humans are highly unique and derived. The formation of the human CNS requires precise coordination of molecular and cellular processes across various cell types over an extended period of time. Disruptions in these processes can lead to structural and functional abnormalities in the CNS, resulting in neurological or psychiatric disorders.

Recent advancements in technology and research have shed light on the molecular and cellular landscapes of the developing human CNS, particularly in the cerebral neocortex. In this article, we will explore the latest understanding of human neurodevelopment, its implications for neural evolution, function, and dysfunction.

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

The Best Strategies To Begin Saving Money For Your Grandchildren Right Away

Aesop had a fable about an ant and grasshoper, with the ant working to save up food for the winter while the grasshopper just lies around. While it can be really tempting to just lounge and take it easy, it pays in the long run to work hard now so we can relax more in the future instead of constantly needing to play "catch up". If you are looking for ways to prepare that nest egg, here are some ways to do that. 

While it’s important to plan for the future and consider where your money will go decades down the line, saving doesn’t have to be all about retirement funds and end-of-life financial planning. In fact, there are a variety of ways to start saving and investing that can benefit both you and future generations.

If you play FanDuel slots, a popular online casino game, there's a change that you can win big. When someone wins money, there's a large temptation to spend it all at once, but the smarter option is to invest it and put it away for the future. Remember, though, that casino games are just for fun and money spent on them should come from a carefully budgeted fun money line of your budget, and anything won is just an extra.

You can build up a nest egg that can be used to fund special occasions and contribute to college funds for your loved ones. With careful consideration and a willingness to explore new ways of saving, you can start laying the groundwork for a brighter future today. 

Sunday, August 13, 2023

Our Frugal Annual Desert Camping Trip

My family had a wonderful camping trip in the desert and I wanted to share about it with you. This is an event the family and I look forward to every year. 

This year was our largest camping trip yet. We were 4 families instead of the 2 we started with. There's something nice about a really small group and something nice about a group a bit larger. These 4 families were all close (my best friend, her husband's family, her good friend's family, and my family) so there was a good emotional bond. I can't imagine going with a larger group though, then it would lose its intimate feel.

Our day started off well enough. We met with our friends at a gas station where we went to fill up with gas and transfer some of their things to my car since we had more room (yay big car!) and they had so many things on their lap until we did that.

My friend mentioned that my rear driver's seat tire looked a little deflated, so I went to top it off with air and while I was at the pump decided to make sure all the other tires were properly inflated. (There was a bit of a wait until I could start as there were 4 cars ahead of me.) As I got to the last tire, I knew something was wrong. As soon as I took the nozzle off the tire valve, all the air started coming out of it- the pin that was supposed to keep the air in broke- and in no time at all my tire was completely empty.

Fortunately, in the same parking lot as the gas station there is also a tire repair place, so I carefully drove to them, inching along, on just my tire rim. I was really hoping that I wouldn't need to replace the entire tire, since it was pretty new, but since this was the first time it happened to me I was in the dark... but hoping it wouldn't be an expensive fix. It ended up being a really simple fix to just replace the valve, and cost me $20.  However there were a few people in front of me, so we had to wait in the sun until our turn came. We only ended up getting on the road to our camping trip about an hour and a half later than we originally started, with kids already grumpy.

Saturday, August 12, 2023

Gifts that Hit the High Note: Perfect Presents for Music Teachers

As a child, I took music lessons with 3 different instruments- piano, recorder, and harmonica, and had many teachers over the years. My kids have mostly taught themselves via online videos or apps, but I started my daughter with voice lessons before everything shut down from COVID. A good music teacher can make a big difference in a kid's life. If you're looking for a way to show your appreciation to your kids' music teachers, here are some terrific ideas, many of which are extremely affordable; for example, it is quite easy to propagate succulents for free from cuttings.

As the curtain falls on another academic year, it's time to show appreciation for the dedicated educators orchestrating young musical talents' growth. Music teachers play a significant role in shaping the minds and hearts of aspiring musicians, imparting their knowledge, and nurturing a lifelong passion for music. What better way to express gratitude than by gifting them something that hits the high note and resonates with their musical soul? This article explores a selection of perfect presents that will delight any music teacher.

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Snapfresh Leaf Blower: the Top Decision for Compelling and Proficient Yard Upkeep

If you have a yard and have trees nearby, you may be very familiar with the concept of autumn leaves. Leaving them in your yard on the ground can ruin the grass underneath as they decompose, and in some places it can even get you fined. Solution? Hire someone to get rid of the leaves, or do it yourself. Doing it yourself can be either with a rake or with a leaf blower. Doing it yourself will save you money, but it may be tiring to rake it all by hand, especially if you have a lot of leaves falling on your property. If that's the case, you might want to purchase a leaf blower. Here is why you may want to consider getting the Snapfresh leaf blower to aid in your task. 

Keeping a spotless and clean yard can be a requesting task, particularly when confronted with an overflow of fallen leaves and garbage. In the quest for the best leaf blowers available, "This Old House," a famous expert on home improvement and cultivating, has handpicked the main five leaf blowers accessible on Amazon in 2023. Among these world class choices stands the SnapFresh Leaf Blower, a strong and flexible instrument intended to reform your yard upkeep schedule.

Strong Execution: The SnapFresh Leaf Blower has acquired its put on "This Old House's" rundown for a few convincing reasons, with its noteworthy presentation being the first. This leaf blower offers hearty velocities of up to 130 MPH, guaranteeing that no leaf or garbage is left unattended. Its remarkable blowing force easily cleans up leaves, grass clippings, and other nursery debris, leaving your yard perfect in record time.

Lightweight and Versatile: One of the champion elements of the SnapFresh Leaf Blower is its lightweight and ergonomic plan. Weighing a little more than six pounds, this leaf blower is unimaginably simple to deal with and move, making it ideal for clients of any age and actual capacities. Its minimized size and smooth development guarantee that you can easily explore sharp corners, tight pathways, and difficult to-arrive at regions effortlessly. Express farewell to difficult and tiring yard work, as the SnapFresh Leaf Blower's easy to use configuration gives uncommon solace and comfort.

Flexibility at its Ideal: Gone are the days when a leaf blower was exclusively utilized for clearing leaves. The SnapFresh Leaf Blower carries adaptability to the front, offering different capabilities to take special care of your particular necessities. With a basic change, it easily changes over into a vacuum and mulcher, permitting you to gather and mulch the fallen leaves for more straightforward removal or treating the soil. This multi-practical ability dispenses with the requirement for numerous apparatuses, saving you time, space, and cash.

Battery-Fueled Effectiveness: The SnapFresh Leaf Blower's cordless plan is controlled by a dependable lithium-particle battery, offering expanded runtimes without the problem of strings or the requirement for steady re-energizing. The included 2.0Ah battery gives more than adequate ability to handle even the most requesting yard cleanup assignments. Moreover, the blower includes a quick charging innovation that empowers the battery to arrive at full limit in only an hour, guaranteeing negligible free time and greatest proficiency.

Calm Activity and Eco-Accommodating: notwithstanding its noteworthy execution, the SnapFresh Leaf Blower highly esteems its low-commotion activity, creating a simple 60dB of sound. Express farewell to troublesome commotion contamination and hi to a more quiet outside experience. Moreover, the battery-fueled nature of the blower makes it an eco-accommodating choice to internal combustion partners, decreasing fossil fuel byproducts and adding to a greener climate.


As perceived by "This Old House," the SnapFresh Leaf Blower addresses the exemplification of greatness with regards to yard upkeep instruments. Its outstanding presentation, lightweight plan, flexibility, and eco-accommodating activity make it an unquestionable requirement for mortgage holders and cultivating lovers the same. Embrace the comfort and proficiency of the SnapFresh Leaf Blower to change your yard support routine into a breeze.

Sunday, July 30, 2023

All Ready To Go Camping!

As a parent living on a low budget and until recently without a car, there were many experiences from my childhood that I wished I could give to my kids, but were untenable. However, we went camping every summer, and often twice, and that was something that I knew could be done frugally with my kids. But first we needed to figure out how to do it without a car.

When my kids were very little we borrowed someone's tent and went camping in the forest/field right outside my community and we were able to walk there. The kids had a terrific time.

Then we figured out a place that was free to camp and bus accessible. The first time we went there, we took a bus to my ex's relatives and then they drove some of us and the rest of us bussed to the beach campground a few miles from their house.

Since then, we've gone camping pretty much every single year. We figured out how to go to that campground entirely by bus and had a wonderful time and implemented lessons learned from our previous years to make it better.

Friday, July 28, 2023

Eight Reasons Why Accreditation Matters in Higher Education

If you are considering going to college or sending your kids to college, you may be contemplating where to send them. There are some colleges that aren't accredited and while some things may draw you to one of those places, there are some big potential downfalls with sending to such a school. Here are some reasons why you should make sure that you send your kids or go yourself to an accredited school.

As you embark on your journey through higher education, making the right choice of college or university, you might stumble upon the term "accreditation."

You may wonder what does it entail and, more significantly, why should it concern you? In simple terms, accreditation is a validation process that educational institutions undergo to certify that they conform to a set of stringent quality benchmarks defined by an external authority.

However, the role of accreditation stretches far beyond merely assuring quality. It catalyzes improvement, inspiring educational institutions to continually explore better methods to serve their students and substantially contribute to the broader academic realm.

This article will illuminate the crucial role accreditation plays in higher education.

Sunday, July 23, 2023

Teaching Children The Importance Of Financial Planning

As a money-conscious parent who grew up in a money conscious home, it is important for me for my kids to develop good financial skills and habits, among them planning for their future. It seems to be working well so far. My older two kids have worked small jobs from time to time and save up money for things that are important to them; for example this summer and last summer my son advertised expertise in the computer field and so far has gotten quite a few data recovery jobs, among other things, and he'll be using that to pay for things that I consider extra but are important to him such as a monthly gym membership.

Are you concerned about your child’s financial future? Do you want to ensure they have the tools and knowledge to make informed financial decisions as they grow up? One of the most important skills you can teach your child is the value of long-term financial planning.

Financial planning is not something that is typically taught in schools, so it is up to parents to take the initiative and educate their children. By teaching your child about money management from a young age, you can help them become financially stable adults.

In this article, we will discuss:
  • The importance of teaching kids about the value of long-term financial planning

  • The benefits of investing in precious metals as a way to secure their financial future

  • Important financial concepts to teach children

  • How to introduce children to precious metals

  • Tips for teaching children about investing in precious metals. ( The Gold Information Network is a great site to gain more information about investing in gold and precious metals.)

Saturday, July 22, 2023

What I Did With a Huge Amount of Scallions and Other Free Produce

I live in a community with an overall low socioeconomic status, and because of that, I'm lucky in that there are charities that deliver food that either is close to the expiration date, banged up, otherwise look bad, or are mixed with spoiled produce, so you need to pick through them to find the good stuff. A few blocks away from me there is a distribution point, and a friend of mine posts in our community group if they have any leftover food once they finished their distribution to their regular recipients; after that, it is a free-for-all for whoever wants to come to take because otherwise, it'll end up in the trash. Now that I have a car, hopping over to pick up what is left over, often at 10 pm, is not a big deal, and I have been able to really benefit there.

Recently I got some great stuff from there, and I wanted to show you what I did with it all. I was very proud of how much goodness I was able to make from what was available, together with what I already had at home. I made this for a nice dinner, with the intention of having lots of leftovers- it's easier for me to cook all at once and then have what to eat later.

Exploring Gold and Precious Metals for College Savings

Starting off adulthood saddled with debt makes for a very challenging adulthood, yet college debt is so normalized. There are ways to prevent this from happening to your children, one of which is saving up for their college years in advance. Investing in gold and other precious metals is one way to do that; here is why it is a safe investment that many are choosing.

Do you want to ensure your child has enough money to pay for college? With tuition costs on the rise and investment yields shrinking, saving enough to cover all expenses can be difficult.

However, investing in gold and other precious metals can be smart for parents looking to grow their college savings. Gold is known for outperforming other investments and can act as a valuable hedge against inflation and a devalued US dollar. For more information on precious metals investing, visit https://barcodeoflife.org/

Adding gold to your investment portfolio can potentially increase your returns and reduce your risk. In this article, we will explore the benefits of investing in gold and other precious metals for college funds and the various ways to invest in these assets.

Whether you are just starting your college savings journey or looking to diversify your existing portfolio, incorporating gold and precious metals can be a wise choice.

Monday, July 10, 2023

The 4 Steps To Taking Care Of Your Sore Feet

This post might be submitted by a long time contributor, but, oh boy, do I have a lot to say on this topic. Sore feet is something that I've lived with my entire life. I sprained my ankles regularly since I was 4 years old, because my ankle joints are wonky and extra wobbly because of my Ehlers Danlos Syndrome. In addition to the sprains, the wobbly ankles make my feet roll outward, which means that I wear the outside of my shoes faster than the inside, which makes my feet roll even more outward, which ends up causing me calf pain. And lastly, my feet used to burn, feeling like something in my feet was ripping apart, if I walked too much.

I went to a podiatrist a few years back who diagnosed me with achiles tendonitis and plantar fascitis, and he recommended getting insoles for my shoes for those, and they made a huge difference for my feet. And then after I was "yelled at" by my physical therapist for wearing such terrible shoes, I started buying shoes meant for people whose feet roll outwards (it's called supination) and my feet feel so much better! Now, unless they get sprained (which happens regularly), my feet are mostly pain free. I'm still supposed to get orthotics because they can affect other parts of my body, but at least I don't usually hurt in my feet anymore.

My teenaged son decided to start running but his feet started to hurt him when running because of the stress it puts on the joints. He was already wearing a good company's shoes, but they weren't specifically running shoes, so we looked on Amazon for reviews for good running shoes, and now that we invested in them he is able to run without pain.

With that lengthy introduction, here are some ways to help take care of your sore feet.

Sunday, July 9, 2023

My Really Awesome Scratch and Dent Store Haul

Hi everyone, I know it's been a while. Been a bit down lately, low energy and not feeling so great, so I apologize for not posting as often as I should. I have a bunch of good posts planned, and hope to get them written and posted very soon. But in the meantime, I wanted to share this haul from the scratch and dent store last week. 

I haven't been to a scratch and dent store in some time because it isn't convenient with a car, since there's no parking on the street where the store is, and it is just a two lane street. Last week my daughter was with me and we shopped together, and then she waited in the store while I went to get the car and drove there, and quickly so as to not bug the people in the street behind me, she and one of the store workers there threw the groceries into the car and then she hopped in so we could stop disrupting the flow of traffic.

But that, while a ridiculous way to shop, was still a worthwhile shopping trip, since I was able to get so  many goodies for a fraction of their regular price, and many times quite cheaper than the alternative I generally would buy. For example, most of the products were from an organic grocery line, which is much pricier than usual. These products were generally much cheaper than the non organic versions. Best of all, much of these are items I usually buy anyhow, so it wasn't just "ooh, that's a good price for that item, let's buy a bunch of things that I don't usually buy, because they're cheaper than they usually are" when they aren't cheap products even when discounted, and/or since they aren't items you generally use they'll just sit in your house unused. There were three exceptions to this, which I'll mention below.

Monday, June 12, 2023

Quick Guide to Traveling on a Tight Budget

I really love to travel. And, of course, on a budget. Unfortunately I haven't been able to travel since the pandemic and it's really disappointing. If you want to be able to travel but aren't sure if you have the funds here are some suggestions to help you plan your trip on a budget.

Many of us are traveling on a budget. Whether you are taking a gap year, trying to see the world before you settle down, taking a long trip with your family, or just trying to save money on your yearly summer vacation, there are plenty of ways to cut costs and save cash. A tight budget certainly doesn’t have to mean that you can’t travel. It might just mean that you have to plan more carefully and prioritize more. Here’s a quick guide to help you.

Sunday, June 11, 2023

What is Cryptocurrency Lending and How Does It Work?

If you have money you've saved up, you might want to consider investing. One of the ways you can invest is with cryptocurrency lending. I know nothing about crypto, let alone investing, let alone lending, so I'll just leave it to a contributor to tell you all about this potential way for you to make money.

With the development of the crypto industry, we are witnessing a great number of new up-and-coming projects and products that offer earning options. Instead of simply investing in them and holding their assets in wallets, we have so many earning options, much more interesting compared with holding crypto. The ever-evolving crypto market presents an assortment of avenues to procure profits, encompassing yield farming, staking, mining, lending, investment, trading, and an array of other possibilities. In the context of this discourse, our focus shall delve deeper into the intricate world of crypto lending.

Homemade Cheap Granola Cereal Recipe -- Vegan and Allergy Friendly

I'll confess, my kids end up eating far more cereal than is ideal, because it is something they can grab to eat if I don't have something else ready. But obviously it isn't so healthy, so my sons requested I buy them granola to have as cereal. I'm cool with that, but it gets pricey since it is much more expensive per bowl than other cereals. 

I thought of making my own granola, but I knew that most granola recipes are very expensive with lots of nuts and honey and dried fruit. So I decided to attempt to make my own granola but using cheaper ingredients. Instead of using honey (or maple syrup like I saw in vegan recipes) I used date syrup that is a fraction of the cost of honey locally. There is date syrup that is pure dates and is more expensive, so I used the stuff cut with sugar, and is just 60% dates. Before I did that I checked the store bought granola and saw that it had added sugar in it, so I didn't feel like I was making it "less healthy" at least. When I was first testing out the recipe the kids said that it wasn't sweet enough, so I added more sugar into the recipe, and I still don't feel guilty.

As for nuts- I decided to leave them out because they really up the cost. Initially, I tried using peanuts in place of the nuts but my kids told me they didn't like them. I used desiccated coconut as an addition to the oats, since they are cheaper than nuts. And I decided to sometimes add dried fruit like raisins or whatever else I could buy cheaply, but sparingly, and only after it was cooked, so it wouldn't be burnt.

I tried this recipe over many times until I got it right and my boys were helpful with their feedback, since I can't taste it since I can't eat oats. They were also willing to eat the stuff that got somewhat burnt. But finally I settled on a recipe that I'm happy with because of cost and the kids enjoy as well. 

As for cost? I haven't measured this out exactly, but since I didn't use a scale but instead went by volume... Oats cost me about $1.40, coconut cost me $1.15, the date syrup less than $0.95, the oil $0.25, the sugar $0.12 and the rest is too negligible. So about $3.87 for this batch. The store-bought granola is $5.71 for a package. And this makes approximately 1 1.2 times the amount, so it is definitely worth the cost.

A note- I used 1 1/2 cups coconut in this and 7 cups oats, but you can play around with it and substitute part of that for nuts, seeds, etc... or even use only oats, as long as there is a total of 8 1/2 cups solid stuff for the rest to stick to.

Homemade Cheap Granola Cereal Recipe -- Vegan and Allergy Friendly