Homemade Yogurt

Our family loves yogurt and I thought I wonder if we could make it. We tried and have found a wonderful easy recipe. We made some this weekend and my youngest said “Boy mom I love when you make yogurt.

Recipe for plain yogurt this recipe makes 4 to 5 cups. Yogurt can be stored in the refrigerator for about 10 days. This recipe can be doubled or tripled with no loss of quality, but make sure you can use that amount in 10 days or less. Adjust pan and container size accordingly. We saved containers from store bought yogurt and use them for our homemade.

  • 1 quart milk (whole, low fat, skim or reconstituted nonfat dry milk)
  • Nonfat dry milk powder – use 1/3 cup powder
  • 1/4 cup commercial, unflavored, cultured yogurt* It needs to say active cultures in the container. My dear friend Robin buys powder cultures at the health food store and that works fine also, but cost more.
  • 3 tablespoons sugar or honey (optional) we use sugar and this is what really made the taste great for us.

Place cold, pasteurized milk in the top of a double boiler and stir in nonfat dry milk powder. Stir in sugar or honey if sweeter, less tart yogurt is desired.

Heat milk to 200 degrees F and hold for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring gently to dissolve powder.

Remove one cup of the warm milk and blend it with the yogurt starter culture. Add this to the rest of the warm milk. Temperature should now be 110 degrees F to 112 degrees F.

Pour immediately into the clean container, cover and place in prepared incubator. I use a towel wrap around container and then wrap warm heating pad with a pan over that and heat for about 4 hours.

Yogurt should be set. The longer the incubation time the more tart the flavor.

We add fruits and eat or use to make smoothies with fruit

Happy frugal eating!

But, I want it!

Distinguish between wants and needs.

Many in our society think we deserve it or but, I want it! I remember on Friday nights when I was tired and didn’t feel like cooking I would talk myself into I deserve to spend the money, I earned it. Then spend 25-30 on a pizza. This adds up every week. Now I have learned to make my pizzas and save. This may seem to some not a big deal but it may start here then comes the flat screen TV. We want what our parents have worked for their entire life. Many of us say, sure I know what the difference between a want and a need but have fast we forget when we really want something!

A need is something your existence depends on and you can’t do without like food, shelter and clothing.

A want is something you would like to have but, you life doesn’t depend on. I think somewhere down the line has got blurred. Today all the media and marketing has made wants into needs.

Some years back I went to the store for my mother in law and she gave me a list. She had a brand name soup on her list that was more expensive then another. I said you can get 3 of this brand for the price of this one can. She said “yes, but the commercial said I’m not a kid anymore!” So here is a prime example of great marketing.

What a want for one person may be a need for another.  We all have different wants and needs.

Here are some ways to help in this struggle of wants and needs.

  • When you see something you think you need. Ask yourself;  Can I leave without it? Be honest most of the time when I ask myself this question I realize I don’t need it.
  • Can you afford it? My sister in law, Barb always saved when she wanted something and paid cash. This way you see your progress and work for you want. Pay cash for your purchase!
  • Ask yourself if you are talking yourself into the purchase. If you are then is just may be a want instead of a need.
  • Don’t purchase the item right then take time to think about the purchase. Many times I walk away from the product and go home to think and realize I really didn’t need it.

I think it so important for our children to see us distinguishing the difference between wants and needs. Our society has been given so much. This Christmas when I told my 12 year old son wanted a game, I told him it was too expensive he said “but,I want it!” and pouted for a while and said to me “why are we so poor?” I did buy the game but I thought I must not be doing my job  as a parent. I have started to really think about what I am teaching my children and myself. I caved because of guilt, Mom guilt. I think parents cave to their children because if we don’t give them what they want we are bad parents, now I see I am a bad parent not showing my children the difference between wants and needs.

See you soon!

I just wanted to post a quick note. I got a new video camera with my christmas gift card. My hope is to post how to videos on some of our frugal recipes. See you are should I say you’ll see me, on video of course.

God’s Blessings on you, Candy

Frugal Bathroom tips

Something to think about; the bathroom is the only place a guest can be alone in your home? Your guest can see exactly how clean or messy you are.  A place we can be alone too, clean those bathrooms!

Showers use less water then baths. Unless you are a teenager, then we limit showers to 5 minutes. A bucket in the shower for while you run the water to get hot, That water can be used to flush toilets or water plants.

Use less shampoo and conditioner. You can accomplish this by putting a nickel to a dime size in your hands rub them together then rub in your hair. If you squirt the shampoo and/or conditioner into your hair it wastes it and water trying to rinse it out.

I bought a soap holder that attaches to the side of the wall with suction cups, so the soap can drain this dries the soap faster and isn’t slimy on the shelf.

Dry the shaver off after use and it will last longer.

Compress Toilet paper down so it doesn’t roll as easy and the kids won’t over use it.

Baking soda can be use when out of toothpaste. Put baking soda on the toothbrush with a little water and brush.

Soaking your new toothbrush in soak water extends the life of the bristles.

Baking soda and water can be used as mouth wash. Put ½ t. baking soda, ½ t salt and ½ a glass of warm water into your cup and gurgle and rinse. This will also help canker sores.

Always knock if the bathroom door is closed!

2 T. baking soda in baby’s bath helps diaper rash. Grandma Young said to try it when the kids had a bottom rash and guess what? It worked!

Dry baking soda rubbed on under arms in a cheap deodorant or vinegar wiped under your arms.

Did you wash your hands?

***toothpaste getting to the end of tube, we use a small wallpaper roller and push the toothpaste up to the top or you can cut the bottom open and get to it that way.

Mirror getting fogged up rub with shaving cream and wipe off and you won’t have that problem for a while.

I made a book holder from a wire hanger on the side of the toilet. Worked great!

Put a ½ gal milk jug, brick, 2 liter pop bottle filled with water or a big jar in the tank of the toilet to take up space and you won’t use as much water when you flush.

We hung a hook for all the kids in the bathroom to hang their towel when done to dry. Some do not like this idea but you are clean when you get out of the tub. You can hang over the shower curtain rod so they dry completely and don’t smell musty or mildew.

Use plastic store bags for little garbage and sample perfume or cologne work nice in the bottom of the trash.

While the light bulb is off spritz your favorite perfume on it and when you turn the light on the aroma will fill the bathroom.

Turn product bottles upside down to get every drop. You can also water them down a little and extend their use a little more.

Use up those free samples. Having guest stay at your home? Make a basket with your free samples and a few towels and wash cloth so they can feel right at home.

Denture tablet will clean a hard to remove ring around the toilet. This really works, it may take a few times but this was a wow moment.

If you have a bathroom fan, use it when taking baths and showers. This will help with the steam, mold and costly repairs in the future. We also have a small window and I like it opened to release the steam.

When your child is old enough to take a bath but still needs supervision- clean the bathroom while you are in there.

Clean your ears!

Brush and floss your teeth and save money at the dentist. When your teeth are clean you can smile a lot more. A smile is the cheapest way to improve you looks!

When your towels start to fray you can:

–         Sew along the edge and repair.

–         Cut into washcloths and sew around the edges.

–         Rip into strips and make a mop.

–         Make a bath mat

–         Use to stuff something.

–         Use for cleaning cloths

Leftover soap slivers? I put them in my hand soap dispenser with water. And when the soap melts, shake it and it is ready to use. Foam soap pump can be reused I put 2T. Soap and fill with water and it is ready to go.

I taped a little prayer to the side of my bathroom cabinet so I see it when I get up and when I go to bed, it reminds me to pray. Grandma Young always had the serenity prayer taped to her mirror.

Leave shower curtain closed and you won’t get as much mildew on it, the water can run off and dry.

Swish the water before you get out and drain the tub and you won’t have as much scum stuck to the sides.

Save water make the tub with a crayon for how high the kids can fill it for a bath.

Vinegar wiped on chrome makes it shine.

Baking soda is also a way to clean your tub. It doesn’t cost that much and it doesn’t scratch.

Use one towel; I realized my 98 pound baby is using three towels for her little body.

If you have any you would like to add please leave a comment and I’ll add.

Frugal Birthday Traditions

Today, my older son Jacob turned 14 years old. He awoke to the Happy Birthday song . A great tradition that started with my Grandma. When I was young she called each who had a birthday and play her Happy Birthday record. Some years back my sister Kim found the same version after searching on the Internet and gave each of us one for Christmas, The tradition was revived. Now we call each other on birthday’s and play the song. Something so simple can bring a smile on your birthday.

Store bought birthday cakes can be rather expensive here are a few ideas to save a little.

  • My dear friend Robin really makes her family feel special when it comes to birthdays. I loved this idea she made cookies and put a scoop of ice cream between two, the kids loved them. This way you take care of the cake and ice cream.
  • I can get a McDonald’s cake for $5 in my hometown. I know the price varies but the kids think it’s funny.
  • Cupcakes are very frugal and you can feed a lot of kids.
  • We make our cakes also and decorate them in theme, they may not be like the professional cakes, but they are made with love.

– If you are having a party have the party in between a meal time and just have snacks instead of a full meal.

– We used to go out to dinner on birthday’s  now we make a birthday dinner at home. We all like to attend and be together.

I wanted to share a birthday memory that wasn’t that long ago that meant so much.

I remember when Lyndsey was having her 5th birthday. Times were tough; I was making a cake from scratch thinking why can’t I just buy a cake mix. The phone rang and it was my mom she said “Don’t buy a cake I already got one!” When she arrived she had all kinds of goodies. Sometimes the Lord comes in thorough people.

Happy Birthday!

Live everyday like it was your last!

Today, I went to visit my Aunt Ursula she turned 85 on New Year’s Eve. I wanted to talk about this wonderful lady. I have only been related to for 20 years by marriage. Aunt Ursula would give you the shirt off her back if you told her you liked it. She has buried a husband and two of her five children. Ursula enjoys those around her, she is excited about an ice cream social tomorrow and the fellowship she will have with her neighbors. she has had a hard life but would never know by talking to her. She told me she lives everyday like it were her last because someday she will be right.

I have learned a few special things from her and just couldn’t  go without sharing.

  • Give what you can, because it shows the Lord’s love.
  • Listen to your family history, you may learn something you didn’t know.
  • Enjoy your community and family
  • Live each day like it was your last

Then next on our visit was my Aunt Corky, that almost lost her life last month. She is in a rehab center. I could hear Aunt Ursula words “Live each day like it was your last!” Because you just might be right.

Friday Night Pizza

Our family, like many of yours loves pizza on Friday night and now that our children are teenagers, having bigger appetites.  I don’t know what we would do if we had to pay for pizza. This recipe my dear friend Robin.  We have had so much fun with them and like to make them as a family.

Pepperoni Bread

1c Water
1tsp lemon juice
2 T oil
2T Sugar
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 T dried milk
3c flour (I used bread flour)
2 tsp yeast
1 T wheat gluten ( I found this at the health food store and have made it without and they were fine)

Mix all, rise until double
Knead, rise until doubled
knead and separate into 6 loafs
Roll each  into rectangle and line with pepperoni, cheese, you can add your favorite toppings on half of rectangle, sprinkled with a little garlic powder.  Fold over to form a loaf.  I brushed a little butter on top and sprinkled the garlic power.
pinch edges of the  loaf and place on cookie sheet.
Let rise rise for  more minutes and then place in oven
Bake 350 15min

Have a great weekend!