Thursday, October 19, 2017

Winter Preparations Underway

Saturday was the beginning of a fully packed weekend for us.  It began bright and early and long before the sun was up when I had to take my daughter to the high school to ride the bus to a marching band competition at Idaho State University.  On the way home I stopped at Walmart and picked up two gallons of RV antifreeze.

Next stop on the way home was Fred Meyer to pick up a few groceries for the week ahead and to take advantage of a digital coupon I had downloaded for five boxes of Capri Sun on sale for 99¢ each.  I really wanted to get those to have for the girls to pack in their school lunches.

By the time I got home my youngest was up and we had a quick breakfast before grabbing gloves and tools to go out and prunes some of our trees.  We had a lot of pruning to do this year and a lot of the branches were touching the roof on our garage.  We climbed onto the roof and worked from there to cut back the branches.  We tossed them off and swept the roof finishing up in time to watch the Canadian Snowbirds fly over our house as part of the big air show taking place over the weekend.  It was a spectacular way to take break from our chores.

Once the planes were done we moved down to the yard to cut up the limbs.  We stacked the larger pieces in the back yard to dry out for next year.  We cut up all the smaller branches and filled up two of our neighbors borrowed compost bins to set at the curb.  Then we moved onto the next tree and trimmed it.

Cooper's Hawk - wikapedia pic

I changed gears for a bit and got the motorhome winterized.  I'd started on it Friday evening so I was anxious to get it finished up.  I blew the water out and ran the anti freeze through the waterlines, toilet and poured some down the drains.

Canadian Snowbirds

One of our neighbors took this!

Some of our friends stopped by to watch the Air Force Thunderbirds take to the sky over our house and once that was over they stayed to give us a hand with some of our pruning.  We also had a nice visit.

After my oldest got home from her competition we grabbed the laundry basket and headed out to the motorhome to clean out the pantry and bring in the food and bottled water.  She was pretty impressed that I'd finished up the winterizing without her.  She was sure I'd need her help and quite frankly I thought I would too, but I managed.

Sunday morning we were right back at it after our big Sunday breakfast.  We pruned our large maple tree and cut up those limbs adding to our woodpile in the backyard.  We cut up the rest of the branches and made a big pile to wait until after the garbage man comes.  I think we'll be filling bins to set at the curb for a few weeks.  While we worked the air show started up again and it was a lot of fun to work and watch them file overhead.

There was a lot of dead wood on that maple poor tree and I had a small stack of shreddables in the house so we grabbed a box of matches and lit a fire in our fire pot.  We cut up all of that dead wood and got it burnt up along with the shreddables.  We weren't about to let a good fire go to waste so we cut some sticks and roasted wieners, something we hadn't done in a very long time.  It was fun and tasty too.

While we ate the Thunderbirds took flight and put on their show.  We were also visited by a Cooper's hawk that had flown into a tree behind our house.  So beautiful.  He talked to us for a while before he flew off.  Then it was time to get back to work.

The girls and I grabbed a broom and a borrowed ladder from our neighbor and headed out to the driveway.  They got up on top and swept off the roof to make sure there weren't any leaves or twigs on top and to get off any dirt or dust.  Then they helped me unfold the big heavy duty tarp I had bought a couple weeks ago and we got Laverne all wrapped up in her winter blanket.  I have to tell you it makes me really sad to see her all wrapped up like that because I really want to be out on the road, but soon we'll be unwrapping her and doing just that.

It is really important to me to protect my Laverne, however, and I don't want to risk damage due to ice buildup or standing water, plus I think it will be much easier to get the snow off the tarp instead of trying clear it around the vents and stuff.  Plus it is less likely that we'll inflict any damage to the roof this way.  I don't love the look, but I do love the protection.

Once the tarp was all secure, and yes I do have a quick way to get in and out of her this winter when I need to, we picked up and put away our tools and called it a day.  I was ready for a long hot shower and some quality time in my recliner.  The girls made quesadillas for our Sunday supper and it was perfect!

It was a lot of work, but it felt really good to get it all done.  Now, on to the next things on the get ready for winter list.  Fortunately, none of them are on as large scale as the ones we just completed.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Meals We Prepped #9

My meal plan this past week was pretty simple again.  I started off on Sunday morning by taking out the meat from the freezer to thaw and then heading off to Albertson's to do my grocery shopping since I had a very full Saturday and didn't want to add grocery shopping to the schedule too.

I didn't start prepping until I was ready to make supper that evening and it worked out just fine.  By the time dinner was ready to eat all of my prepping for the week was finished as well.  I cooked a large pot of rice and a pot of linguine.  Once the pasta was cooked and drained I put on some sausages to cook up for Sausages & Peppers with pasta.

While the sausages simmered on the stove I chopped up some ham for Fried Rice and also sliced up some very thin for sandwiches.  I decided the rest of the week was simple enough to finish up as meals were prepared.

Sunday - We enjoyed the Sausages and Peppers with linguine and a salad.

Fried rice with egg drop soup

Fried rice with hot & sour soup

Monday - I took the rice from the refrigerator, sliced up four large mushrooms and a bunch of green onions.  I also julienned a handful of baby carrots.  I put chicken broth in a pan with some of the green onions and soy sauce and allowed that to come up to a simmer while I started a second pan of water for a packet of Hot & Sour soup I had bought at the store.  I put the carrots in the water and once the soup packet was stirred in I added the mushrooms.  My youngest whisked up a few eggs for me while I made the Fried Rice.  We added the eggs into the soups and dinner was ready.

Tuesday - I went to dinner with a friend so the girls heated up leftover Taco Soup from Saturday with cornbread and leftover salad.

Wednesday - My youngest sliced up the two remaining sausages and reheated them with the pasta.  The oldest made a salad while the pasta was in the microwave and I set the parmesan and salad dressing on the table.  I also set the table and dinner was on it in about 10 minutes.

Thursday - My oldest had to march at a football game so I grilled up Ham & Provolone sandwiches for supper.  We had leftover salad and some potato chips on the side.

Friday - The girls and I prepared nachos for supper.  We hadn't had them in quite a while so the girls were very excited about this meal.

Saturday - Saturday was a busy day for us.  I knew we wouldn't have much time for dinner so I put the ham I'd been using at the first of the week into the slow cooker on low.  When we were ready to eat I baked potatoes in the microwave and made a quick salad using salad mix in a bag, cherry tomatoes and a handful of leftover black olives.  Quick, easy and oh so good.

The only meal we didn't prepare from the menu plan was the lemon chicken so I saved those ingredients and we'll be incorporating that meal into this week's plan, most likely.  I really like that Saturday is a free day so I can pretty much prepare whatever based on our schedule.  And as long as we are flexible this meal prepping business really works for us.  I love it!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Air Show In Boise! So Cool!

We are very fortunate to live where we do.  Our neighborhood is positioned perfectly for good seats to the air show.  No crowds or heavy traffic to deal with and snacks are nearby and very affordable.

Here is a flyover at BSU.  Someone there took this shot on Thursday.

It has been awhile since Gowen Field here in Boise, Idaho has hosted an air show.  They had been practicing for several days so I was getting some glimpses, but Saturday was the big day and it was spectacular.

They fly so fast it is hard to get a good shot

Canadian Snowbirds

This time the Canadian Ari Force Snowbirds joined us and they were spectacular!  The planes are gorgeous and the intricate maneuvers they perform are nothing less than phenomenal.  The youngest and I sat on our roof and watched.

My beautiful girl!

U.S.A.F. Thunderbirds

Couldn't ask for better seats

When the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds took to the skies in the late afternoon it made my heart soar.  They put on an amazing performance as well and we were all in awe as friends joined us and we watched from our driveway.

Here is an awesome shot taken by our local newspaper

Near the end one of the pilots swooped in low, we could hear him coming, flipped sideways and buzzed our cul de sac.  It was so loud and the vibration shook hard enough to set off everyone's car alarms.  It was amazing!  Talk about goosebumps!  I was so excited I felt like a little kid.

Sunday we got a repeat performance.  So lucky and it was fabulous.  If you would like to see a short video of the air show click here.

All I can say to our Air Force and to the Canadian Air Force is THANK YOU!!!!!  What a special treat.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Last Week's Thrifty Moves

I was having a hard time trying to get going Sunday morning.  I think I had hit the wall and was just plain pooped out.  A person can only go, go, go for so long and it is time for a day of rest.  But I don't do well in that mode and I feel guilty when I'm not being productive, but my body told me otherwise so I listened and stayed in bed until almost 8:00!  For me that is really late, but I admit I felt better for having done that.

I did feel like I was getting my second wind by 10:00 so the girls and I headed off to Albertson's armed with a list and digital coupons.  I spent more than I would've liked but I was also able to get the final item on my "freezer wishlist" and purchased two really nice hams for 99¢ a pound!

I also shopped ahead and picked up quite a few things on my list for the next week as well as this one.

I taught my oldest how to make foaming soap refill solution for our kitchen dispenser.  She also refilled her bathroom dispenser with the cheap dish soap I keep under the kitchen sink. 

I rinsed out the laundry detergent and the fabric softener bottle so I got out every last drop andI had enough of each to wash a load of clothes.

I had received a coupon for $10 OFF $10 Purchase at JC Penney as well as a Bath & Body Works coupon for a bottle of lotion and another one for $5 and a free travel size bottle.  I decided to use those in a mini shopping spree.

I wish I could show you what I got, but she reads my blog

I was able to get my oldest a birthday present at JC Penney for $4!  It is really nice too.  The travel size lotion went into a gift bag I'm putting together for my youngest.  The $5 lotion is a treat for me.

We washed out several Ziploc bags and a shower hat to reuse.

New feathers coming in

Three of the hens are molting and as a result we are currently left with only one egg layer.  That's a lot of pressure for one sweet little hen.  The others look like zombies dressed up for Halloween.

I forgot to put out the bag of potatoes I bought

Saturday I picked up the a few more groceries for the week ahead, including two freebies I had downloaded to my Fred Meyer card in the past two weeks.  Capri Sun (not pictured) was on sale for 99¢, limit of five, with a special digital coupon I had downloaded to my card.  I got five for the girls to take in their school lunches.  I also loaded up on markdown produce and a few other items.  I spent just over $16 for that trip!

Be sure to check back tomorrow and on Thursday to hear how we spent the remainder of our weekend.  It was a doozey that left me thoroughly exhausted but totally exhilarated all at the same time.  At least I can rest up at work today, after all, I do have a desk job.  But I have to say I am thrilled with all that took place and all that we did.  And it was super thrifty too!

How was your thrifty week?

Friday, October 13, 2017

Thanksgiving Dinner Plans

It isn't too early to plan for Thanksgiving, which happens to be my favorite holiday, and start your shopping.  Its only six weeks away!  Can you believe it?!

Last week I picked up a turkey breast on sale for 99¢ a pound!  I was super excited to get that and pop it into our chest freezer out in the garage.  I don't know why, but I'm always a little stressed about the main course and once I make that purchase I feel like I can relax.  I've got this.

You never know who might show up at the door

Not sure yet if there will be guests or just us this year.  But one thing I do know is there will be plenty of food!  Last year we traveled and spent the whole week with family.  We ended up going out to a very nice restaurant for dinner, something we've never done before.  It was very nice, but I am really looking forward to getting to cook this year.

As I was planning our menu I realized that I pretty much have everything we need to make a traditional Thanksgiving Day feast.  Happy days!  So although it is still six weeks away I thought I'd share with you what I have in mind.

Yeah, my turkey won't look anything like this

Roasted Turkey & Gravy

Mashed Potatoes


Green Beans

Roasted Carrots

Homemade Rolls & Butter

Olives & Pickles

Cranberry Sauce

Pumpkin Pie & Whipped Cream

Birthday Cake

Best part of the meal!
Needs more whipped cream though

My youngest daughter's birthday is on Thanksgiving so we will have a double celebration that day!  Yaaaay!

Have you started making any plans yet?

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