Craft Room part 3
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Some Helpful Hints


We are really feeling the gas prices, as I am sure all of you do. David has a very long commute, so it is really hitting us hard. I am trying to make what we have really last and not leave the house. Here is a few hints that have helped me. I would love to hear yours xoxoxo


1. With all my bread baking, I am having lots of ends and leftover small pieces of bread. I keep them in a zip-lock baggie in the freezer. Then when I have enough I make bread puddings. Last week I made a savory one with roasted garlic and grated Gruyere cheese, Yumm.

2. Aubern'e and I have been washing our face with honey. We both love it. The wonderful thing about honey is it is very good for breakouts but also is very moisturizing. So it helps Aubern'es teen skin and my (old ;-) dry skin both. I am needing a lot less moisturize and my skin is so soft.

3. For breakfast I am make a simple muesli. In the mourning I put rolled oats (not instant, I like the thick rolled oats) in a bowl and cover with milk and let sit half an hour. It softens then add nuts, dried and fresh fruit, a splash of maple syrup. I also add ground flax seeds and flax oil.

4. For lunch I have been having raw veggies with a simple tapenade dressing. Just take a small spoonful of tapenade and thin it out with some olive oil and drizzle over veggies. I am lucky my grocery store has an olive bar, so I can get  a small scoop of tapenade and make it last.

5. You know when you have those really greasy messes and it is nice to have something to clean it and throw away. I took some old sweat-shirts  and flannel sheets and cut it into squares for a throw away rag.

6. Simple dinner we had last night. Pasta tossed with saute' zucchini, lots of garlic, toasted sliced almonds, feta cheese, (I would have liked to added fresh mint, but I do not have any right now. But added chopped chives). Thats it and chocolate bread pudding * for dessert.

* This is for Christine. It is the closest I can find to my recipe. I tell you, they have to make recipes so much harder then they need be. I will post my recipe soon. But I wanted to say, with bread pudding you are basically baking custard with bread in it. Most of the recipes I saw were 350 temp. with no bain marie and that is too hot for a custard. So either turn your temp. down to 325 or add the water bath. Or better yet, do both. It will take a bit longer to cook but you will have a nice soft, luxurious pudding. Instead of burnt edges and raw center.



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Thank you for the tips Clarice...we are definitely feeling the 'crunch' here also as gas & grocery prices are rising. I am looking to save everywhere I can! The muesli sounds great, I am going to have to try it.

Jennifer Paganellli

You knock my socks off!!! love the pillows, the pantry inspiration and your friendship..You go girl...

Lady Laurie

Wonderful ideas Clarice ~ we have been cutting back too, not just because of the gas prices but to try to live a little more simpler.
I can't wait to try the honey idea!!


I had to come back to comment on how beautiful a job you did with the craft room. I absolutely love that you were able to do it on little money. To me that is the most wonderful kind of creativity to see. Just lovely!


Living frugally is a way of life here too and has been forever. We live on a lower income and have cut back on everything. Since fall we've lowered our outgo over $900/month. It has been challenging, but we are maintaining. We have even been able to pay off debt along the way, just at a slower pace.

Some practicals for us have been eliminating cable t.v., reducing utility usage, using some coupons, cooking almost completely from scratch. I only shop for groceries or for needed home/personal items. I do really think about purchases and keep a list of wants/needs. It teaches me patience but especially contentment. I stay away from stores that I know I will desire things. Eating out is minimal.

We each have a small allowance, and it does help to splurge on the occasional want. We stay home more now, and don't travel. There's a lot that we do and I stay motivated by reading a lot. I see that all the things we do help me to continue to stay home on a smaller income. We've chosen this life over a life of more "stuff" and it's where I love to be.

Gumbo Lily

Isn't it wonderful when you can take dry bread crumbs and turn it into something like Chocolate Bread Pudding?

I like to take anything left-over in the frig, and saute in a skillet with a little olive oil and make "Hash"....onions, garlic, meats, veggies. Combine, add your favorite seasoning and you have another meal. Sprinkle with your favorite cheese.

I was just looking through my veggie drawers and decided it's time to make some broth. So I'll boil a little skin-on chicken with the veggies that are about to go bad and we'll have a nice chicken/noodle soup tonight for supper. (It's chilly here in Montana)

Loved your tips,

karla nathan

It sounds delicious, not simply cost saving!


An inspiring post. Many of us are certainly going to have to "adjust" our lifestyles inorder to live within our means. This tough financial time has a few bright spots. It makes us resourceful, frugal, less wasteful, and more appreciative of our blessings--especially our family, friends and home. Thanks for sharing your ideas. I don't think I do a lot differently except curtail unnecessary trips and to think more before I buy. I came from pretty humble beginnings. My parents taught me to "make do" with what I had and not to waste. I think I go overboard with the "not wasting" part---I tend to have difficulty knowing when it is OK to let something go (I have too much stuff!)


What wonderful tips and thank you for sharing your recipe. You are always so helpful and I enjoy each and every visit to your blog.



That's my kind of life style. A lovely style it is!

Jill xoo


You say from the Honey bear container? The kind my kiddos use with their chicken? :) Reminds me of the book The Secret Life of Bees. Loved that book. Honey has lots of "special powers." I totally want to try this!
I dunno if this trips your trigger in any way (as I am positive that your cookng skills put mine to shame) but I like to make garlic rolls with the leftover hamburger buns. Just add butter and garlic/spice and grated cheese. Hate throwing those last 3 hamburger buns away!


Good tips! Flax is so good for you. I keep a small bag in my fridge and grind a little bit at time to add to various dishes. I'm trying to limit driving or at the very least group errands - Regular is almost at $4!



I started using those green bags I asked about a few weeks ago, with pretty good results. I should get the test experiment up on the blog soon. It has saved me quite a bit on the grocery bill.

Christine Crocker

what a sweetheart you are for sharing your chocolate bread pudding! I have a terrible thing for chocolate.
All of your hints and good ideas will definitely be put into use here.

Thank you for making such a lovely place to come visit, to learn and to share.


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