Greetings, Thrifty Sisters! How is it possible that the end of January is looming so near? I swear we just celebrated New Year’s Eve! Although, I have noticed that the days are getting longer, and that is a happy thing! If February and March fly by as fast as January, I will be happily playing in my garden before I know it.
In the meantime, I am going to keep playing the minimalism game. Now that I am on day 28, I have successfully cleaned and cleared my way through my dresser, cleared all the clutter along the one wall (that space that the bed conveniently hides from the rest of the world, where I stashed all the projects and crap from the visible parts of the house), and started tackling the shelf next to my bed. My craft area is also looking a lot better! I worked my way through one storage shelf, my computer desk and my work space table. Those spaces are clean, dusted and are organized.
Yes, I have a lot more spaces to work through, and have discovered certain closet and cupboard spaces that are going to need some serious attention. But a small amount of effort each day has really made this challenge manageable. You know, Feb 1 is almost here – you, too, could start your own challenge! Remember, you don’t just have to toss everything – keep the things that add value to your life, or your favorite things. Sort of like that song from “The Sound of Music”, “My Favorite Things”.
Now, on with the rest of today’s newsletter. I have some great little tips and tricks for you all! Some of these tips have been dug out of ancient email archives. (Looks like my email folders could use some spring cleaning!)
Have you seen this life hack where you can turn open ended plastic bags into resealable bags with the addition of a plastic bottle top and cap? Thanks to Britt for sharing this great idea: https://lifehacker.com/5653113/seal-plastic-bags-with-old-bottle-caps
Britt also shared this link to making your own reusable cleaning wipes. When I was a kid, Dad used to moisten a rag, and place it in a bread bag. This bag went under the front car seat before long trips. The idea was that there was a wet rag in case of sticky fingers, wiping up vomit, etc. Don’t judge – we were 3 pretty car sick prone kids! Dad was certainly ahead of his time, because now I bet he would be pretty hip in his environmental choices. To make your own reusable cleaning rags, check out this link:
Ever wonder what to do with the rest of that lemon that you only needed the juice from, or needed just a little bit of zest? Check out this great way to dry and save lemon peels, and some nifty ways to use them! http://foodinjars.com/2013/02/air-dried-lemon-peel/
Speaking of not wasting food, here are 5 more tricks to help reduce the waste: https://earth911.com/home-garden/reduce-food-waste-5-tricks/
Need more water in your daily routine? I find that winter is a tough time to consume the full amount of water that I need daily. Ironically, I was actually curious about straws and water consumption this week. I have reusable straws that use in my large carry container, and I have large, lidded glasses that my reusable straws fit into. I don’t know why, but it seems like I consume more water by using the straws than with a regular glass. I always thought that this was in my head, but apparently there is some truth that adding a straw to a container does help one with more consumption. https://www.care2.com/greenliving/3-surprising-reasons-to-put-a-straw-in-your-water-bottle.html Also, be warry that this would work with any beverage that you are consuming through a straw. So, if your goal is to cut soda from your life, don’t drink it through a straw.
Whew – that’s a lot of into for one newsletter! But what about a recipe? Ever find that you have amassed a collection of partially used frozen veggie bags, and are just not quite sure what to do with them? I love making stew and soups from these left overs. One can clean out their freezer and fridge and toss them in a crock pot and come up with a pretty awesome stew or soup. Let’s not waste that food, gang – use it up! Fire up that crock pot, or dump it into your large pot, and create away! Visit these links for some “soupper” ideas:
Maybe the idea of using your crockpot has your all fired up for some great eats this week? How about a visit to http://www.crock-pot.com/recipes.html# for a collection of recipes that are divided out by meals, ingredients, regional cuisine and flavor options.
And with that, my Thrifty Sisters, enjoy the new month that is approaching. Good luck in clearing your clutter, trying out some of these nifty ideas, and drinking more water! May I suggest a reusable straw? And let’s create more with the leftovers in your kitchen! Until next time, keep on keepin’ it thrifty and fun!