Thrifty Sister Newsletter Vol 8, Issue 9 – February 14, 2016

Greetings, Thrifty Sisters! Wow – we made it to the middle of the month, and in just a couple of weeks it will be March! Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to down play February. It’s a beautiful little month. But, I’m ready for spring and summer. I’m also ready for some sunshine. BUT, I do have those cute little promises of new life (seed) packets on my kitchen counter and I have done a lot of garden day dreaming!

One productive thing that I did this week was buy a new steam mop. I was rushing through the house earlier last week, vacuuming like a crazy lady, and was shamefully reminded that my stair carpet is in dire need of attention. My carpets, in general, are screaming for a good steam cleaning. Obviously, this was not happening on that particular day, but it reminded me that I had been curious about the use of steam mops on carpet.

This past week, when I wasn’t desperately holding onto seed packets, I found myself researching and reading reviews on various steam mops. The last time I had asked about steam mops, they were fairly new. I only knew a couple of people that owned one, and they had not tried them on carpets. Apparently, technologies have improved and more steam mops offer carpet cleaning options.

Without sounding like a spokesperson, I am just going to tell you I purchased one (feel free to send me a message and I will tell you which one I bought). I gave it the old college try yesterday morning, and the kitchen floors were squeaky clean! My hubby had a blast sliding across the kitchen floor in his socks. Apparently, our previous cleanings did not offer such joys. The studio tiles look great, although the grout might be beyond “white” at this stage of neglect. And the stair carpets… oh my, yes! They look so much better. I had to take two attempts at the stairs, but since the steam dries so fast, it wasn’t that time consuming of a project. And I’m pretty sure that if I keep at it, they will get better the more that I work on them. I also hit a couple of high traffic carpeted areas, in which I was pretty sure that only new carpet would fix, and they refreshed and cleaned very nicely! And with only the power of steam. (insert happy dance here)

So if you are thinking of taking the plunge into the steam mop world, I whole heartedly give a thumbs up! As with any appliance, do your research, consider your needs and budget. And, take my friend’s Traci and Harv’s advice – do purchase extra cleaning pads right away. They were right, and I’m glad I listened.

At this time of year, many of you might be more into tax mode than cleaning mode. With that comes the thoughts of logical spending and savings and how to get more into your retirement so you don’t have to work until you are 90 years old. Since some of you might be in that very logical thought process, this might be a good time to remind everyone of how to continue to protect your privacy and yourself against potential scams.

This is from our dear friend, Greg. “Here’s my public service announcement:   If you want to stop receiving marketing solicitations from phone, mail, email, credit cards, and even deceased, attached are the up-do-date methods of getting off the lists.  Even though it can be redundant to both mail a letter and fill out a website and call a toll free number, I’ve done them all to make sure I’ve closed every gap I can….”

https://www.optoutprescreen.com/?rf=t

https://www.dmachoice.org/

https://www.donotcall.gov/

Some of these lists are good for 5 years, and need to be renewed. I know that I signed up for some of them, a “few” years ago (my, how time flies!), but with the amount of 1-800 calls that our home and mobile phones are getting, that might be an indication that it is time for me to renew our registration.

Remember a few weeks ago when I shared Johnny’s website about how to use rice to help fill out your meals and stretch your grocery budget? (http://www.southernplate.com/2013/06/money-saving-tip-rice-the-ultimate-budget-extender.html) Britt has shared a clever trick on how to reduce the amount of sugars that rice makes. Huh… sugars… well, that makes sense, as rice is a carbohydrate.

So if you are watching your carbs or sugars, Britt says to reduce those calories and remove some of the sugar, you add coconut oil to the water, boil it up with the rice, and let the rice cool (refrigerated) for 12 hours, it reduces the starches by almost half. Sound too good to be true? Fact check it here: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/adding-coconut-oil-to-rice-could-cut-calories-in-half/  Thanks, Britt!

Are you watching your intake of gluten or dairy? My sister, Sonya, shared this web site for gluten and dairy free crock pot and freezer meals. And if you need to watch your sodium, you can make those adjustments, as well! http://newleafwellness.biz/2015/10/19/31-gluten-free-dairy-free-crockpot-freezer-meals/

And for my final share of the day, here’s how to take care of a case of the grumpies. YOU can change the way your day goes. Situations happen, but one does not need to feed the grumpy monster. Take those negatives and find a positive. Be the change, my friends. http://www.care2.com/greenliving/the-5-minute-fix-to-any-bad-day.html

And with that, my Thrifty Sisters, may you have a glorious week full of things that make you happy. And don’t forget to add your name to the Do Not Call list! Enjoy some good eats, and continue to find fulfillment in your days. And with that, my Thrifty Sisters, keep on keeping it thrifty and fun!

Read the Thrifty Sisters, both new and old by visiting https://thriftysistersliving.wordpress.com/ or find our latest posts on Face Book https://www.facebook.com/ThriftySisterNewsletter .

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