Monthly Archives: December 2014

Thrifty Sister Newsletter Vol 7, Issue 9 – December 21, 2014

Greetings, Thrifty Sisters! I hope that you have had a lovely two weeks. Last Sunday, I had the opportunity to enjoy my niece and nephew’s Christmas program. I am happy to report that I am one proud Auntie of an Angel and a Star. My nephew said that he was the “star” of the program!

I sincerely hope that each of you are able to find special moments to cherish during this Holiday Season. It’s the little things that really do make a huge difference.

Speaking of little things that make a huge difference, Christine has shared a wonderful web site that lists 39 grocery items to make at home. This list covers kitchen staples, pantry items, make ahead breakfast options, freezer meals, and snacks. Thank you so much, Christine, for sharing this wealth of knowledge! Visit the following link for these 39 ideas: http://frugalitygal.com/2014/08/homemade-grocery-items.html

Do you enjoy DIY kitchen and natural body care products? Have you considered gifting them this Holiday Season? I fully realize that this is crunch time and maybe one doesn’t have time to cram in one more to-do item in the next 4 days. Instead, do yourself a favor and bookmark this web site that contains 50 DIY body care item recipes. Even if you can’t take a look at it now, I think that 2015 might offer more opportunities to browse through this great list: http://www.earth911.com/living-well-being/50-diy-natural-handmade-beauty-products-that-make-great-gifts/#

And with that, my Thrifty Sisters, I am keeping today’s post short and sweet. I know that you all have many, many things to accomplish in a short amount of time. Although, do take great pleasure in the small moments. They are precious and can leave you with fond memories for a lifetime.

Allow me to wish you each a very Merry Christmas! And remember these wise words of advice that I dug up from a November, 2011 Thrifty Sister:

Nothing has to be perfect. Focus on what is right and good.
Ask for help and accept that your way isn’t the only way.
The simplest choice is the best choice.
Find joy in whatever you do and wherever you are.
(EcoMom, 11/20/2009)

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Thrifty Sister Newsletter Vol 7, Issue 8 – December 7, 2014

Happy December, and Greetings, Thrifty Sisters! I can hardly believe that December is upon us. I am pretty sure that school just started about two weeks ago, but according to my calendar it is going to be 2015 before I know it.

Before too much time slips away, I want to make sure to share this tip from Mollie. Mollie says, “I heard a good Thrifty Sister tip today if you have soup leftovers to store.  Take a hot (sterile) canning jar, put your (boiling) hot soup in it, screw on the lid and ring, let it cool and seal, and then store in your fridge.  I usually freeze my leftovers, but this saves on thawing time, plus I’ve got lots of extra jars around not being used.”

Fantastic idea, Mollie! I would imagine that with the sealing process, one’s soup leftovers could be stored in your fridge for several weeks. And, Mollie is right, that would significantly cut down on the unthawing time. Thank you so much for sharing that idea, Mollie!

Speaking of clever ways to reuse or save your leftovers, please take time to read this blog: http://eatdrinkbetter.com/2014/11/24/reduce-thanksgiving-waste/ This particular article provides a number of ways to reduce holiday food waste, including a portion planner tool (Who knew such clever tools were out there! I always just ask my mom how to cook for a mob), clever ideas on how to expand your dining wares without having to spend a fortune, creative left over meal options and ideas, and even some ideas on how to help one’s local food pantries. Please take time to read some of the bright ideas shared in this site!

I was just reading this morning that household waste increases by 25 percent between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Sure, I think we all know that our garbage bins fill up quicker during the holiday seasons, but when one combines the extra food and shopping waste, we send an additional one million tons of waste to landfills every single week. That adds up to around six million tons of holiday waste by the end of the year.

Not to shake the jingle out of anyone’s holiday cheer, but there are small things that we could do to help reduce our waste. Statistics say that if every family reused just two feet of ribbon we could eliminate 38,000 miles of ribbon from local landfills. Ribbon can be reused, and reused, and crafted with, and reused. Remember, if you are going to use ribbon, use the good stuff that can be reused for many years to come.

So, saving two feet of ribbon helps save our planet, our land fills and keeps cash in our pocket. Awesome. You know what other small thing we can do to help each other? Random acts of kindness. With the holiday crazies approaching, small things will go a long, long way to cheering up one individual’s day. By allowing one person to see some kindness, we actually generate other acts of kindness. Who couldn’t use more kindness?

My son works in the food service industry and happens to deliver food to people. I am just shocked to hear his stories of how horrible people are to him. Seriously – this kid just delivered YOUR food to YOUR work place, which YOU choose to order during noon rush traffic (have you been on 57th and Louise Ave at noon on any given day? I don’t advise it). He probably narrowly missed being in 4 accidents between his store and your place of work, he is at the mercy of traveling through our busy streets (oh, it’s also winter time! That adds extra excitement some days) and picking up and delivering several meals at one time. Once he manages to navigate through all of these harrowing close calls, he typically is greeted with a lack of courtesy (did I mention he just brought you FOOD), and many times no tip, but the curse words and anger that he is greeted with many times is just inexcusable. Really, public, did you talk to your mom this way when she put a meal on the table for you?

I am sure that none of the Thrifty Sisters behaves in the above way, but it has opened my eyes to an immense amount of disrespect and an overwhelming feeling of not being unified. We are all in this together. Smiles and polite words really do mean BIG things to many of us. The following list of small acts that one can do is taken from this article: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/how-small-acts-of-kindness-can-heal-and-inspire.html

Please consider doing any of the following simple acts of kindness throughout your day. Let’s spread and inspire kindness.

  • Change a roll of toilet paper in the restroom. (Nobody likes to get stranded!)
  • Tell a manager about an employee’s exemplary customer service. (You complain when things go wrong, don’t you?)
  • Listen to people you meet with an open and giving heart. (Listening is a powerful gift.)
  • Try spontaneous giving. (It’s really quite addictive.)
  • The next time you’re at the gym, get someone a towel.
  • Assist someone by carrying their groceries or packages.
  • Let someone go ahead of you in the checkout line.
  • Scoop your poop! (No one wants to step in it!)
  • Call upon an elderly neighbor.
  • Thank someone who impacted your life.
  • Accommodate someone else’s schedule.
  • Befriend a parent on a plane. (It could make all the difference in the world.)

And with that, my Thrifty Sisters, go forth, enjoy creative ways of storing and using your leftovers, take pleasure in reusing and repurposing your gift giving ribbons, and please, be kind to one another.