Friday, February 26, 2010

Getting off the Grid, for a few days

Electricity is now considered a necessity. The first thing you are required to do upon moving in a new home or apartment is turn on the utilities. But does it really need to be a necessity?
This is the question I have been pondering each month when I receive my electricity bill. The apartment we lived in one year ago was approx 1300 sq ft. Electric heaters, electric water heater, etc. Our power bill was $40/month. The apartment we live in now is approx 450 sq ft. Gas furnace, electric water heater. Our power bill here is $90/month. So each month I scratch my head, trying to figure out WHY?
Our previous apartment was on, what we call “country power”, we are now on “city power”. The later is a few cents more per KWH, but not THAT much. We have an older (I use this word lightly, it is probably older than I am,) fridge. We replaced the oven to a “new” model, that we received on freecycle. So the only other option seems to be that we need to go without electricity a few days a week/month.
Evidently I’m not the only one lately who is considering this, over at Our Happy Homestead, she recently talked about doing the same thing with her family.

Have you ever considered going “off the grid” just for a few days? Or perhaps even longer?

Frugal Farmhouse

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Picture Frame Dry Erase Board

I have been trying to find a dry erase board to put on my fridge door for months. The little cheap ones don't have flat back so they slide off the fridge. So after some brainstorming I remembered dry erase markers work on glass the same way they do dry erase boards.. So this is what I came up with.

-picture frame ($1)
-6 magnet strips (1)
-fabric (on hand)
-double sided tape (on hand)
Open up your dollar store frame- whatever size you want.

Flip it over and rip off the little holder. They come off very easy, just wiggle it back and forth.
Unwrap your magnets. Break them apart.

Evenly space the around the back edges of the frame. Now, take out the back of the frame and over with fabric. I used double sided tape and pulled the fabric tight on all sides. Put it all back together. And you get this little beauty...
I'm really happy with how this turned out. I'm especially happy it only took about 10 minutes :)

I'm linking to:

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Homemade Tortillas

I have wanted to try these for a long time, but to be honest I was terrified. Not sure why, but its gotten to the point where we just can't afford a $2 package of tortillas. This is my second try at making them. They get easier each time, and better tasting according to DBF. I got my recipe over on Emily's blog.

And while keeping to my #2 New years resolution this recipe cost me $.20 for 8 tortillas. Store boughten is $2 for twelve. So that is a $1.04 savings. Not a lot but it is worth it to me. These tast so much better and I know what is in them!

Frugal Farmhouse Link

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Check recycling company for auto parts

Before our recycling company crushes all the cars to be shipped out to be recycled, they let you salvage the parts off those cars that you need. You take the parts off the vehicle and pay by the pound per item. DBF found this out yesterday and saved us $123.14. He is putting together an old GMC truck and he needed filler neck for a gas tank and all his headlight bulbs. Instead of paying the $124.76 that we had price shopped last week for he found this frugal alternative. For everything it only cost $1.62! I’m so proud of his frugal find.

You might check in your area to see if this is something your recycling company does.

Frugal Farmhouse

Monday, February 22, 2010


I spend a good amount of my day browsing blogs, reading posts, and getting to know what other bloggers are chatting about. That being said, I rarely find a blog that catches my attention for more than one or two post but recently I came across this wonderful blog, It is about a family of 4 that live in Maine. Emily, the mom, stays home with her two small children, while her husband works and goes to school, which is such a common thing for people our age. She discusses their life, trials, triumphs and the way they live. I spent 4 hours reading her entire blog. It quickly became my favorite of all the blogs I have ever found.

I noticed a lot of controversy in her comment section. Honestly, I didn’t pay much attention to it. A few days later I googled the title of her blog because I forgot to bookmark it, as I read through the google search I found some painful sites. Sites completely dedicated to trashing on Emily and her family. With some further clicking through sites I am completely astonished as to what these people are doing. Tracking her every move, including times between comment approvals as to when she should be cooking dinner, picking apart every aspect of her life in GREAT detail and those are only scratching the surface. I am amazed that people that tell Emily to stop blogging and take care of her family spend SO much time tracking her every move. In my honest opinion, I really feel that they need to turn off their computer and get out of their house.

I have come across a lot of blogs, sites whatever that in my frugal opinion were WAY to extreme for me. Such as freegans. BUT, the difference is instead of ripping their lives apart, I went on my way in searching for a blog or site that was more my style. If you aren’t interested in what Emily is blogging about keep looking for a blog where you do like the content. The majority of us really enjoy reading her blog. There is no reason to create such nonsense over one person, who is living her life the way she chooses to live her life. Her children are healthy, her husband is a great provider, and they are a wonderful family just trying to make it is the crazy world.

Emily- I wrote this so that you know that there are a lot of us out her who thoroughly enjoy your blog. I can’t wait to see what you are going to post each day. I respect you as a person, mother and fellow blogger. I can only imagine how this negativity attacks your day. I hope for the sake of those of us who truly love your blog and use it as a great resource you will push through.

Frugal Farmhouse