The Birthday Party

Black and white are the colors of photography. To me they symbolize the alternatives of hope and despair to which mankind is forever subjected.

Robert Frank

My furbabies have been over stimulated with the new sounds of their new home.  I know they are only doing their job to protect their alpha dog.  (Me)

The first few days were a little rough for me and my poochies.  They have been barking at everything and everyone, making me nervous and them as well.  I would take them potty and try to introduce myself, but the dogs were in protect mode, which made it difficult.  I was really starting to think this situation wasn’t going to work.  I even had a neighbor tell me to keep my nasty dogs away from her.  I was really feeling like I wasn’t going to fit in.

Wine Roses 5AB

I decided to walk across the street to the family dollar and buy myself a six dollar bottle of Liberty Creek wine.  You know the good stuff.

As I was getting my drink on, there was excessive laughter and screaming from the neighbor kids in our courtyard, so I peeked out my kitchen window to see what the raucous was all about.  There were about 20-30 kids playing on a Slip-n-Slide and kiddy pool and water balloons.  Child hood memories came flooding in.  So, I grabbed my glass of wine and sat on the steps and watched with delight.

I asked the kids if they minded if I took pics, they thought that was cool.  I sat and watched as they carried on without a care in the world, wearing whatever clothing and it didn’t even matter.  They were having a blast!

The mom of 9, saw me and told the kids to say hi to the new neighbor.  They all in unison said HI! Really loud!  It warmed my heart.  I am sure it was with sarcasm, but hey, it’s a start.

soup kitchen

Later that evening, the mom with the birthday boy knocked on my door and invited me over for some cake and ice cream.  I obliged.  As it turned out the mom and I have a lot in common and we talked about racism and  that we naturally fear the unknown.  One of her daughters pulled out some braids and she was showing me, and I took my hair out of my pony tail and showed her my hair.  The mom exclaimed, ‘you have  hair like we do!’  We laughed!

I told her about my blog and she showed me some music that she and her mate recorded together.  She has this amazing voice, so I shared it on my social media.  Maybe one day, she will be heard and she can share her talents with the world.

As I reflected on this special night, how here we are from all different walks of life,and that we aren’t really so much different after all.   We have our unique ways of expressing ourselves through music, writing, painting, drawing or whatever.

I am so grateful for the opportunity to meet such wonderful people and their babies.

Now, if I can only get my fur children to relax a little, we will be all okay.

With Hugs and Hope

DTC

The Other Side of Poor

 

I am still not completely moved in but today I had to go to my little weekend job.  I carefully planned out the bus trip to downtown from the East Side from which I now live.  As I waited for the bus, there was another lady waiting as well.  Since I have to spark a conversation with anyone around me, I learned a little bit of her story.

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She was happily married for 16 years, her husband owned his own business and she helped him with books and such.  About 3 months ago, he suddenly passed.  Left her with nothing; she now lives in a broken down van parked by a mini mart.  She has resorted to trading favors for things she needs.

I found a spot on the bus, and another lady sat in a seat near me.  She had an infected cut with still stitches.  She can’t afford antibiotics to help it heal.

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We drove past an area, with people of all race and creed, with knapsacks, and everything they owned waiting for freebies from an outreach center.  I would guess 75-100 folk.

A man in his late 50’s hooked his bike to the front on the bus and hobbled on with shoes that barely stayed on his feet.  By the look in his eyes, he was in a very bad way.

I had to look away; the tears welled up in my eyes. …..

The bus continued to drive past some under passes with men, and women hovering for shade as the heat of the day pressed on their desperate lives.

 

Another, a diabetic, can’t afford his insulin……

I made it downtown to my job location, and had a few minutes to spare.  All I could think about was how fortunate I am.

poor

 

As I got to work, I searched for my demo products and of course they weren’t there, but I didn’t seem to mind, I winged it like I always do and prayed to God how grateful I am.  When I was finished with my shift, I cleaned up the back area and bagged up the leftover demo product that was collecting dust and took it with me.  I got on my bus to go back home and I handed out some of the product samples to those that would take it.  The rest I am going to make care packages for the folk that live in the buildings around me.

I am going to keep on collecting leftover samples and give what I can to the people that I come in contact with that are in need.  It is only a tiny fulfillment of need, but maybe it will give someone a smile.

I messed up purchasing my ticket, so I had to purchase another.  I didn’t have exact change, so at the transfer station I ran over to a McD’s to buy a “cheap” bacon biscuit for $5 to make change.  The dollar store across the street costs more than any high end grocery store.  Price Gouging.

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Here, we have the poorest of poor, and they are being robbed by corporate A-Holes.  No wonder the moral stinks.  You’re damned if you do, and you’re damned if you don’t.

I don’t have an answer, and I don’t know how to fix it, but if I could wave my magic wand, I surely would.

This is all I have today…..

 

With hugs and hope

DTC

 

Sasy’s Tips-Price Matching at Walmart

Hello fellow savers,

Summer is upon us and the cost of feeding those hungry active kids can be overwhelming. Well here is an easy way to save money on the go without clipping coupons. Who has time for that! lol
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Let me introduce you to the flipp app. It is so very easy to use! It gives you all the sale ads for what ever zip code you put in.
Download the app from your play store. Once you are have it on your phone, put a zip code for a fairly populated area. I live in the fort worth area, so I use 76109.
Then just cruise the ads and tap the ones you like, the app will circle the item & place it on your shopping list for easy access in the store. Or, if you know of a certain item, search for that item specifically like Pepsi. The app will find all sales in the area for the zip code you have set.
A few things you need to know:
Items MUST be EXACT brand & size/quantity per package as listed in the ad when price matching.
For store brand items, like milk or eggs, Walmart will pricematch their store brand item for same size/quantity.
For produce, it cannot be a certain brand unless you are buying the same brand. Like oranges, if you buy the cutie brand has to be same size/quantity as the ad. But for loose produce without a brand name, just bag up how ever many pounds you need and they will price match the unbranded, loose produce, per pound item that you choose. I did tomatoes earlier.
For meats, its a little different. Make sure meat does not have a specific product name on it like Johnson, or Oscar Mayer. For hamburger, it has to be the same level like 80/20, Angus, or like butt roast etc., and must have the per pound dollar amount in ad. Like if its hamburger meat in the ad without the per pound amount listed and all it says is “family pack”, Walmart will not price match that.
Things you cannot price match:
Buy this get that
Buy this get this for a penny.
Items MUST have a specific price listed. But you can do this: $1.99 each when you buy 3, so in this instance you would buy three of the listed item @ $1.99 for each item. I did that with Dr. Pepper 12 packs the other day. Amazing deal.
Once your at the register, let the cashier know you are price matching. I like to line the items up at the register in the order they are listed in the app so the process will be smoother.
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Here is the price matching I did at Walmart earlier. Its not much, but I am on a budget.
2-liter Pepsi – price matched to CVS @ .99
18 count eggs, price matched to Fiesta @ .87
Roma Tomatoes, price matched to Savers Cost Plus @ 2 lbs for .99
5 lb bag of potatoes, price matched to Supermercado Teloapan @ .99 for the whole bag!!!
I also purchased some Brat sausages and pork chops, but could not price match them because I just couldn’t get them to match up. I only paid 12.19 by price ​​matching, no coupons needed, I cut my grocery bill more than half!!!
But you can easily see how much you can save on grocery cost without clipping coupons or driving all over town to catch the good deals. There are a ton of snack and drink items for the kiddos on sale right now. Just look, you will be amazed at how much you can get for pennies on the dollar!!
I truly hope my tips and tricks help you guys. Let me know! Any questions, no problem, I am happy to help! Saving money makes me happy!!
Happy Savings Everyone!
Sasy 💖

Move in Day

Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit.

e. e. cummings

 

Here I am sitting on some mattresses on the floor, a cardboard box end table and two sleepy pooches.  It has been a journey getting here, but here I am.

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A few days ago, I decided to get sick again and spent 8 hours at the ER, just to tell me my electrolytes and iron was still low and they gave me some nausea meds for the tummy.  Slept for 3 hours and went to work.  Only because they are remodeling my store and I am not scheduled for the next 2 weekends.

strong woman

When I finally got home, I slept for 12 hours straight.  The next day…..

I just knew if I got a good night’s rest I would be back to my old stubborn self and would be able to move my stuff to the apartment all by myself, just like no biggie-   Wrong answer.

I drove my son to work so I could use the car, checked out the apartment and proceeded to unload the car to make room for my stuff.  Now, the apartment is on the second floor, so here I am carrying one 15 lb. bowling ball up the stairs like it’s a sack of 100 pound potatoes.  I knew right then, this was a bad idea.  I barely got the car unloaded and cleaned up; I was done for the day.

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I decided to utilize my time and wait to pick up my son, to go shopping at the Goodwill.  Yay!  I found some super finds on pots and pans that fit right in with my décor plan for our humble abode.  Since, I was given so much stuff that belonged to my mother, that were post-depression era, which suits the 1960’s apartment building just fine.

By the time I finished my shopping and picked up my son from the bowling alley, I was pretty much spent.  My brain short-circuited hours ago, and I don’t really remember much after that.  Between my brother and my son, about a third of my stuff got transported to the new place.  I did remember to grab the poochies.

move in day

I struggled laying  the mattresses on the floor and some bedding.  As I was getting ready for bed, this is when I noticed I had no charger or toothbrush.  I found my curling iron and the dogs grooming sheers, so I can curl my hair and shave the dogs’ hineys…..but at this point I really didn’t care.  I made it!

Among random boxes, I did find a clock radio with an IPod dock, so I can at least trickle charge my 4s.

c r soup

I did get to make my first home cooked meal in my apartment; Chicken and rice soup.  And as soon as I find my bath bomb, I am breaking in the bathtub.

Until next time,

Hugs and Hope

A New Beginning

So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservation, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality, nothing is more damaging to the adventurous spirit.

Christopher McCandless

 

June; the perfect time to start a new chapter.  My son and I are finally getting a one bedroom apartment!   If we can ever get moved in-it’s been one hurdle after another; but you can’t stop this stubborn red head!

 

The universe always has her own timing, so it is very important we listen to her!

 

This past weekend we planned on moving, but our unit flooded!  We would’ve lost all of  the few things we do own, AND I decided to get very sick.

I spent a few days in the hospital with some stomach issues, which told me it’s time to take my health a little more seriously.   I guess level 50 is the magic number to start thinking about that sorta thing.  The good news is, now I am part of the medical system and I have more options for care.

New carpet, new eating habits and a new outlook, I am ready for my next chapter!

 

So, with all of that life stuff happening, it’s time for me to get back into my handy dandy budgeting skills I am so famous for in unknown circles and get to budgeting!

These are a few of my old school tricks and some new ones that I have picked up along my journey of surviving this world on a budget!

big things

Big Things

Word of mouth works great when gathering things from scratch.  I clean house for a dear friend, she has been so wonderful, and if only everyone had a fraction of her giving heart; this world would be a hundred times better than it is right now.  Not only has she shared her home with my son for the past year, she has a garage full of furniture just waiting for a new home and has generously given it to us for our fresh start.  If only I could return the gratitude to her to show her and her family how this fills my being.

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Little Things

Of course, now I have the perfect excuse, I mean reason, to hit the Goodwill shops!  Oh, how I miss my second hand shopping!  I can do so many magical things with my findings from Goodwill!  Curtains, throw pillows, baskets, odd pieces, whatever my whimsical heart desires!  I have a few blogs on this very topic, since it is one of my many favorites, but check this out for some ideas.

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Saving money and the environment

Since I have to watch my budget and my health; I was trying to think of ways to do both.  Since paper towels can turn into a huge expense-what about using finger towels and linens for wiping and drying?  The dollar stores and secondhand stores have both for very cheap and I can reuse them!  I also found bleach tablets where the fabric dye is in the cleaning supplies at your favorite grocery store, so I can sanitize them during each wash cycle.  Not too shabby!  I can use the pretty baskets and dishes I found to display them nicely in my kitchen and bath to add some personal touch that blends with my décor.

pests

Pests

Living in an apartment can make it challenging to keep the infestations to a minimum, so I am going to have succulents that have natural repellent properties. I haven’t actually tried these yet, but there is lots of info in the great world wide web, Mother Nature Network has lots of great info.

pooches

 

Pooches

Since my furbabies have to share a yard with other critters, large and small; I will need to keep an area by the door with wipes and sprays to keep my babies from bringing in unwanted house guests.  This not only is healthier for me, but for them too.  I can use some hand towels to wipe them down so we all can be happy puppies!

 

Since we are also on the second floor, my poochieweenie doesn’t have a great attention span and a tiny bladder, so to remedy this, I can have an indoor potty yard just for her.  Keeps her off the carpet and instills the mindset of grass being the potty place for pooches.  You can find all kinds of grassy yards of all sizes and prices to fit your needs.  So far, I found that Amazon has the most variety.  I found one that is reusable that lasts for about 2 weeks depending on frequency of potty stops.

It is also very important for my babies to be current on their shots and flea maintenance.  There are always clinics to make sure this can be possible.  Check out humanesociety.org  to find out more.  And never skimp on your flea regimen.  For more info on my tips for caring for your fur ones check out my blog here

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Pantry

With so many convenient options nowadays in the grocery store and the cost of food items, staying healthy and budget friendly can be quite a challenge.  My cure for this problem is buying fresh fruits and veggies and dividing them up into meal size packages and following food guidelines for proper storing. Good Housekeeping has some very reputable tips.

I could keep on going on and on,  but I do tend to get long in sharing, so maybe another day.

I just got a phone call that the apartment is still being worked on, so just a few more days…….

 

When I do finally get to move in, I am kissing the floor and am going to have a good cry!

Thank you for reading and

Hugs and Hope!

 

Cinco de Mayo – What Does it Mean?

Diane's Thrifty Cupboard

fiesta wreath

I grew up in a very multi-cultural neighborhood.  What I remember most was the Celebration of Cinco de Mayo.  The whole neighborhood would get together and share their favorite recipes, the grill would be going with any type of food you could think of!  Lots of music, dancing (and drinking) and everyone seemed happy.

dance

I loved enjoying the food and music and celebration that was going on in my childhood neighborhood and still do today!

Since this weekend is  Cinco de Mayo, it got me thinking about why the Hispanic culture get together to celebrate.  I always assumed it was like our 4th of July- boy, I was completely wrong.

I don’t want to bore you too much with a history lesson, so I will give you the short version.    According to history.com; Cinco de Mayo—or the fifth of May—commemorates the Mexican Army’s 1862 victory over France at the…

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