Here we go again..



I would like to introduce you to Kiki. When she was a kitten, someone brought her to our business location. I wasn’t there and she talked my husband into taking this kitten. The woman said, “She just has a small sore on her neck, just put some salve on it and she will be fine”…. Fast forward past recovering from a $115 surgery to remove a wolf worm, and antibiotics later, and she is fine.

Last night, she had kittens. My kids and I were lucky enough to watch the whole thing. It was a learning experience for them that required lots of explanation. The kittens are so cute!

Not everyone is a cat lover. My husband doesn’t really like them. He does love that we have not seen a live mouse in years. The key word is ‘live’ because Kiki leaves dead ones in front of my door to brag on her abilities…blegh! Some people disapprove of bringing new kittens into the world with so many living in shelters and I get that, too. I am keeping 3 of them and giving one away.

I wanted Kiki to have one litter, that actually lives, before we get her fixed. Her first litter all died, one by one. That frequently happens with a cat’s first litter, so I wasn’t surprised, but I was disappointed.

That second liter….well now…that is a more sinister story. I came home from work one day to find my neighbor’s pit bull standing between me and my front door, growling viciously. You see, he had just ingested all our kittens and he was territorial about that spot. We were all so devastated. My kids and I cuddled those tiny kittens every night when we got home, so they had become a part of our routine and our family.

I don’t have a problem with pit bulls. I suspect that this dog had not been fed well enough for his size. He had a heavy log chain hanging from his neck, so he probably isn’t the happiest dog. This same dog ate all but one of my chickens, in a separate incident about a month later, but that’s a story for another day. Like Kiki kills mice, the pit bull kills smaller prey. I have to admit talking about the ordeal again, stills stings a bit.

Let’s lighten things up, shall we? Kiki is being a good momma and these 4 kittens appear healthy. My kids have named them all, then changed those names, only to change them again. Maybe soon I will let them know that they probably aren’t all girls😉.

I’m not very Picky

I’m not very picky or brand specific. The picture above is a great price on 10 pounds of chicken leg quarters that some would not buy. I do get it. Simple boneless breasts or thighs are easy to prepare and I do get those too. I felt that this was a good deal so I grabbed two bags. At this price, I don’t think they would last long.

Is 10 pounds of bone-in leg quarters as good a deal as a boneless, skinless pack of the same weight? Hmmm…maybe….This is where a little thought, extra work, and creativity comes in.

If I purchase meat bone-in with skin on, then I am able to make more wonderful chicken broth when I remove the meat. So that doubles, even triples, the meals it can make for my family.  However, if I got 10 pounds of meat, without bones and skin, it is just the meat. That would be several, simply prepared, meals. In other words, the weight of the bones and skin could be considered waste, if I didn’t actually use them.


This is what has worked for me. I put two chicken leg quarters in the crockpot. When done, I removed the chicken, and poured the remaining liquid goodness into a stock pot. I added noodles, some of the chicken, lots of water, and spices.


After I remove all the chicken and fat from the bones, I chunk all that back in the crockpot and fill with water. I can get a second batch of broth from the fat and bones. I feel chicken and dumplings in my future😉. My family will eat 3 to 4 meals from these two chicken leg quarters, possibly more.

Frugal Droplets- I was out of milk, ugh! My family loves creamy chicken noodle soup. That requires milk, cream, a can of soup, etc. ..something to achieve a creamy texture. I didn’t have any of that, but I did have cream cheese that I got as a free Friday download from Kroger. If you aren’t getting these and you have a Kroger or affiliate store around, you may want to check into it. Every Friday, I get a nice freebie, and most often, it’s something I can use.

I stirred a 1/2 block of cream cheese in the noodle soup right before turning the heat off. This is important because this good quality, fresh cream cheese. Heating it too fast could cause curdling. I have ruined soup this way before😞.

Healthy Droplets– Leaving the cream cheese out would been a little more healthy and still delicious. Since it was a big pot of soup, I feel okay about it. Also, I sometimes stir in a large handful of fresh spinach toward the end of cooking this soup. My husband won’t eat spinach but I like to add it to mine.

I do frequently get deals on organic, grass-fed, free range, meats. When stores mark down meats, they look the date on the package of all meats, so I often find high quality meats in the reduced section. Thank goodness, the reduced section can have anything in it☺️. This great for my penny pinching self in my quest to eat more healthy.

I hope you enjoyed this post. I have another coming up soon about what works for my family regarding prep and storage that you might enjoy. Thanks for stopping by!

I missed Pi day


So I missed Pi day but better late than never, right? I have a lower carb recipe that my family loves. It also has just a few inexpensive ingredients and is super easy to make. My husband has diabetes so we try to limit carbs. He does occasionally eat a sweet treat in moderation. After all, it’s his birthday weekend!

I made up this recipe from a combination of parts of other recipes. It turned out to be something my family thinks is pretty great. It has great pistachio flavor without the pistachio price😉. I don’t know about you, but it seems that pistachios get a little more expensive each time I look. This pie is delicious and is also really pretty to take to a gathering. Maybe even for St. Patrick’s day since it is green. Who am I kidding, it’s great anytime☺️.




Pineapple-Pistachio Pie with Sunflower Seed and Coconut Crust

1 1/2 cups Sunflower seeds, unsalted
1 7oz/2 1/2 bag coconut flakes
2 tsp melted butter, coconut oil, or vegetable oil
1 box of sugar free pistachio pudding/pie filling
1 8oz can crushed pineapple, well drained
1 8oz container of whipped topping

3/4 cup of milk(or how much the pistachio box recommends)
1/4 tsp salt

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Add all the sunflower seeds, melted butter(or alternative), salt and 1/2 cup of coconut to blender or food processer. Pulse until mixture is a slightly moist,  sandy consistency. Reserve one tsp of mixture for garnish. Press mixture into the bottom and sides of a 9inch pie dish. Bake for 10 to 15minutes until golden brown and edges are slightly crisp. Let cool.



Mix pudding according to pie filling directions on box. Add in can of well drained pineapple, reserve 2 tsp for garnish. Add in the rest of the bag of coconut flakes, reserving 3 tsp for garnish. Toast remaining 3 tsp of coconut flakes in pan over medium heat until brown and slightly crisp.

Spoon pistachio mixture into cool pie crust then evenly spread. Top with whipped topping then garnish with reserved pineapple pieces, crumb topping, then toasted coconut. Chill for at least one hour in fridge or overnight.

Frugal Droplet #1 I try to use the bulk bins at Kroger to purchase sunflower seeds. This way I can buy the exact amount needed. The amount needed for this recipe cost me 88 cents.

Frugal Droplet #2 I purchased generic sugar-free pistachio pudding, whipped topping, and coconut and they taste great. You can also use full sugar ingredients and your pie will be delicious.

Frugal Droplet #3 You can use 1/2 cup of salted sunflower seeds and use unsalted for the rest, then just leave out the extra salt. This crust tastes best with just a little salt. There can be big variations in the prices of salted vs. unsalted vs. raw vs. roasted. Honestly, I have tried all of these and any will work well except for using only salted sunflower seeds. It’s just too salty. Completely unsalted is still good if you have a health condition that requires salt reduction.

Frugal Droplet #4  If you don’t care for whipped topping, you can double the pistachio pudding for a thicker pie and leave it off. It’s still really good!

This is the breakdown, for those that are interested.

Whipped topping- $1.19
Pudding mix- $.59
Sunflower seeds- $.89
Crushed pineapple- $1.49(could have purchased generic for less but I knew I had this can at home, so $1.49 it is☺️)
Coconut flakes- $1.29

=$5.45 minus the milk, salt, and the butter.



Freebies aren’t always free


Growing old, gracefully, is not for me. I see women with enviable, beautiful, shiny silver hair. I, on the other hand, have dull, wirey, strands of gray that are increasing with each passing heada….er…day.

I went through a period of time where I signed myself up for every sample I saw available. It’s free, right..why not? I suddenly found my mailbox full of things I didn’t really need. They were overly packaged with boxes, packing material, then cellophane on top of that. Just way. too. much.

I still love freebies. I have just chosen to be more mindful of what I sign up for. We all have different deal breakers that are important to us. If I sign up for a sample, it must have these requirements:

Droplet#1     It will be used by me or someone close to me

Droplet#2    Can be used in a timely manner before expiring or does not expire

Droplet#3     It can be used as a gift

I sign up for samples that I can gift my family saving me a little bit of money.  For instance, this hair color is not what I use for my hair. My oldest daughter does use a similar brand so I will go get her a box, before the coupon expires, and put it in with her birthday gift in May for an extra treat. Samples are a great way to try something new. This may turn into her favorite brand just because of this coupon.  It’s very important to be sure if your sample is to be given to someone else, that you make sure they will use that product. Not sure if this is supposed to be a hairband, because it is kinda thin, but that is what I am using it for😉.

Here are a few more examples of things I have signed up for that work for me:

– I signed up for lip balm to put in my youngest girl’s stocking for Christmas. She has chronically chapped lips so this was great!

-I signed up for a free elastic bandage to put in my emergency kit because this doesn’t expire and I almost had to buy one due to an injury a few months ago.

-I signed up for tomato seeds, cucumber, and wildflower seeds. These are great to have for a small garden this summer and wildflower seeds are great to tuck into a gift for a friend.

Happy Sampling!



Wasting Less



This is a picture of my lonely paper towel holder. It stays empty a lot of the time. I wish I could say it is always empty but not everyone agrees with me. When we have company, it does house a roll of paper towels.

If we keep paper towels on this roll, it seems to be constantly rolling. My kids will use them for every single task or spill imaginable. While I love the ease and convenience of paper towels, I can’t justify the waste of money and resources.

Here is what is working for me..


I keep a simple basket of dish towels where they can be easily reached by anyone. My family really hasn’t even balked about it. As long as I keep towels available, they don’t mind using them.

When we have a meal, I simply place a few towels on the table to use as napkins. We don’t have many formal meals at my home,  and if someone expects one, they are at the wrong house. I do have a few napkins on hand for guests, as I wouldn’t expect them to be comfortable using our towels. For everyday use, this works great for us. Cloth napkins are also a great alternative, I am just using what I have the most of. If you want to save a little on paper towels, or stop buying them altogether, maybe you could give this a try.


Dirt Cheap Holiday Dribble

IMG_4217.JPGI had to pick up a package of bandaids at the dollar store.  The dollar store has a pretty decent bandaid for just, you guessed it, $1. While there, I noticed a small stack of Valentine’s cards for 90% off. Now, I know this won’t apply to everyone. For those with small kids, grandkids, neices, nephews, etc. that will have a Valentine’s party at school every year for awhile, this may be something for you to think about.

If I know that I will have to buy something yearly,  I choose to get it after the holiday, the year prior, when it is dirt cheap.

There are a few things to consider before doing this. It can have a few downsides.

Droplet #1. Will your child still be interested is this particular cartoon or character a year from now? I picked a Disney theme and Shopkins because my kids have consistently been into them for a few years now. Also, I picked up the pack of dog Valentine’s because most everybody will always love dogs, right?

Droplet#2. I stay away from any package that has candy, or other perishable, that may decline in value after being stored for awhile. I have had good luck with stickers, one of these packs includes stickers, so they should still be ok a year from now. I love the packs of Valentine cards that include a pencil as a gift. I waited until they were dirt cheap so the choice was slim…another downside sometimes.

Droplet#3 When I pick up deeply discounted items, storing them appropriately is a must. I have a special place in a closet that I use for this very thing. It must be: 

A. Hidden from nosy kids(and husband sometimes) for a long period of time.
B. Out of my way and not causing too much clutter.
C. In a designated place, so I won’t forget I got it in the first place.

There isn’t much worse than knowing I purchased something to save myself money and time, only to figure out that I hid it from myself😩. This is reminiscent of when I have forgot to label a freezer item but that is a topic for another day.

It is important to mention that buying too many extra holiday items on clearance can become cluttery(is that even a word?) and overwhelming. I purchase only the amount I need for the following year…not years. Lots of excess storage for long periods of time can become emotionally binding and who wants to feel bound? My husband lovingly laughs at me because when a room in my home becomes too littered with stuff I refer to it as “heavy”. I say this word because that is the way it actually makes me feel…weighed down!

Sometimes not having extra storage space is the reason many choose not to plan ahead in this way. It could easily become overwhelming clutter in that case. Also, this is not a large amount of money that is being saved. For me, this example is what being frugal is all about is ….the little things. The little changes we make add up over time. For me, this minimizes stress because I have one less thing to think about for the next year. It almost feels like…dare I say it?…a little money in the bank.


Something old, Something new


Does anyone have one of these old pop corn tins sitting around? This seems like a common gift around Christmas. I have always loved the size of these tins. They are the perfect size for a trash can. Or maybe a storage container for cooking utensils, sewing notions, or toiletries. Or maybe they could help me with this…


This cluttered little area is below the table right beside my husband’s recliner. We clean it up and somehow, a few weeks later, it’s worse than when we started. He has a birthday coming up so I thought I would surprise him with a storage container for’s just call them treasures.

First, I cleaned the tin of all the sugary bits of leftover caramel popcorn and gave the outside a quick scrub, too.


Then I gathered my supplies. An old plastic container that I saved for something just like this, a cheap paintbrush, white school glue, and      water. I dug around in the closet and found some old wrapping paper that was gifted to me from a friend from his mother’s collection, after she had passed away. I chose one that I thought my husband would love. He isn’t really into floral print but he does love airplanes☺️.


I mixed the glue glue with water until I felt the consistency was not too thick, and not too thin. Most recipes for DIY mod podge recommend 1 cup of glue to 1/3 cup of water. My issue was that I didn’t want to mix up a large amount, so I just eyeballed it😉.



I cut the paper to fit the tin. Then I did the opposite of the what I was supposed to do. I applied the glue mixture to tin instead of the paper to apply it, then let it dry. It just seemed easier to handle this way. I think it turned out ok. Not sure if this will fix the storage clutter area, as intended, but I’m pretty sure he will get some good use out of it.