Frugal Friday

I think overall it was a frugal week. Costco was a bigger shop at $600, but $120 of that was non food, and $20 was wine. So, that meant food was $460. Plus, the coffee, bread, flour sugar, etc will last to the end of July.

My food budget is still $600 . but with Costco at $460. I think I will end up slightly over. But that’s still $140 left. I spent another $30 at Safeway so the balance is $110. We don’t need anything immediately so I can see what veggies we might need next week.

At Costco I bought a box of large tomatoes and one night we had stuffed tomatoes and they were delicious. I made Julia Child’s Sole Meuniere with Dover Sole I got at Costco too and man, it was delicious.

I’ve been decluttering odds and ends from the barn( again) and have decided to sell the Robin Egg Blue mallow ware Melmac.

It’s really a lovely set but I just don’t have any use for it. It would make a great picnic set or a dinner set for someone with a vintage trailer. I’m going to list on Ebay first. I also have a Star Trek console that lights up and I’m going to list that too as it’s just been kicking around the barn.

We decided to hold off selling the tent trailer this summer as one of us may want to sleep out there and we thought that on occasion there might be some campgrounds we’d take that too. We’ll see, nothing is set yet , and we’re flexible. If we don’t use it all in the next 6 months then next spring we’d sell it.

I submitted my LLS reimbursement for May so that should help next month. It covers our health insurance so that’s a big deal. We wouldn’t be making it on just SS without that LLS grant money. I am grateful to all those that donate to LLS so they can help so many people with blood cancers. It is a gift for sure.

Overall, I think it was a frugal week. No unnecessary spending, just essentials.

Friday things…

We are back home from our ‘maiden voyage’ and it did have some snafus.

So here we are leaving the driveway. Up ahead on the left is one of our big ponderosas and B didn’t take the turn wide enough so he hit the corner of the awning and snapped off the cover. Fortunately, it didn’t damage anything except the plastic cover which can be taped or replace. The awning worked fine in camp. The drive up to Tahoe was perfect. Not a lot of traffic and we went 55-60 most of the time and the Santa Fe did great. Controlling the steering is something to pay attention to probably because of the weight on the hitch. I don’t know if having a truck resolves that or what but we can’t really entertain the idea of a truck at this point. We have anti sway bars but it’s still something to pay attention to. B did a great job driving though.

So we got up there early and asked if we could check in and Yes, we could. So, here is our spot.

We’ve stayed in this spot before and like it as it is across from the bathrooms.

The campground had way more people than when we were there 2 years ago. I’m guessing pandemic fatigue and everyone wants to be out doing something. Of course, there has to be the one group of campers that are noisy, loud, obnoxious with too many kids running around. Sorry, but I do think one needs to be respectful of Other campers!!! They were certainly not and they moved picnic tables that are NOT meant to be moved together, and were hacking at tree stumps for firewood. Geez, I’m glad they were far enough away that I couldn’t see all there crap. I would not want to be there this weekend with them blaring music.:(

The first night we did a Lodge dinner of stuffed peppers.

I love Lodge cooking and forgot how fun it is to just put the food in and sit back and relax.

The second night we used the Hibachi and I cooked some chicken for me and a Dr. Praeger burger for B. We had potato salad as our side. Quite yummy.

So the second snafu was concerning the battery charge. We were under the impression that the battery and the solar charging would last easily 2-5 days. Well, we were running the frridge all day and by 7pm the battery charge was low and we turned off the fridge. No lights or water pump either. So the next morning we hooked the Santa Fe back up and charged the battery. Then we ran the fridge 2 hours in the morning and 2 in the afternoon. Then we used the water pump as necessary. That seemed to do the trick and the battery held the charge overnight. It was frustrating to have it happen and like I said, we were told the battery was fine for days. Nope. So we are going to have to buy a second battery and they are not cheap. But it should make a difference.

We hooked up Thursday and left by mid morning and had a lovely ride home. I 80 was not too busy so we did fine. Trailering is quite different with this as opposed to the tent trailer and I’m leaving it open till next year whether it is for us at all. I think the difference would be getting a used truck early next year and then seeing how the trailering feels. The SF can do it and it was fine but I think the uptake is a bigger vehicle with a V-8 will make the difference.

Here’s the bed. Comfy and great windows to look out of. That front window is tinted and you can’t see in at all.

Here’s the totally cool kitchen. We can’t use the microwave unless we’re hooked up to a 30 amp( I guess, not too sure of that).

On our way out we stopped at the Donner Party Memorial.

She was a survivor, I think.

So, today(Friday) I went for my first shot of Velcade in this final round. How long it will keep in remission is anyone’s guess but I hope for a while at least.

WEll, I’m off to take DEX and probably rest.

Simple Sunday

We’re busy getting the Rubicon set up for camping at Donner State park this week. I have most of what I need in there at this point.

I still need to prep some food as I plan on using the Lodge this time to make stuffed peppers with a tomato sauce. I might do a mac and cheese in the Lodge the 2nd night but still undecided. I like to use the small hibachi for BBQing so I might do that instead. We went thru all the stuff from the tent trailer and whittled it down to what we want in the new trailer. We have the white corelle dishes, bowls, and a serving platter, 2 pots, and 2 fry pans. I’m not sure I need 2 fry pans so when we’re up there I’ll see what we’re using.

This is a very quick trip and I’m not sure if we’ll be able to really tell what we need or don’t need. We’re hoping to find some place with hook ups in the next month so we can try out the things that run with power and the sewer hookup.

The kittens are growing and are now annoying tweens running around the barn. We are pretty sure we are not going to bring them in the house. The main reason is my daughter( who is really the one taking care of them) is actually allergic to cats so she has to wear a mask out in the barn. They are really cute though. MamaKat is quite friendly and we’re planning on her spay next week after we’re back from camping. Hopefully, we can get her in the cat carrier.

We had a nice BBQ of burgers, chicken and a veggie burger for my daughter’s birthday with a fruit tart for dessert. It was all yummy. I bought the Dr. Praeger burgers this time and I think they are way better the the processed Beyond meat stuff.

This week Flylady’s zones are the entry way and the kitchen. Our entryways are fine and maybe just need a spruce up but i’m not sure I’ll get to the kitchen zone till later in the week. It seemed like I just did it as the same thing happened last month when the week had 2 zones.

It’s supposed to be quite hot tomorrow with temperatures hitting 100. It’s way too early for such hot weather but I guess global warming is to be blamed. We are watering a lot so our water bill is going to go up.

I’m working on an idea for a series of posts about cooking. What I want to do is pick one or two recipes from every cookbook I own. If it passes the test of tastes good, ease of making, etc, I’ll keep the cookbook, if not, I’ll donate it back to the pet bookstore. I just feel I have way too many cookbooks that I’ve never made a recipe from. I like to look at them but not cook from them so that’s the challenge.

Frugal Friday

It’s almost the end of the month and I’ve come in on budget with groceries. $600. for the month , so I’m very happy with that.

Tomorrow is my daughters birthday, so that extra food stuff will come out of the sinking funds for birthdays. She wants a fruit tart for her birthday cake so that will be bought and then some sort of BBQ food. How the years go by. I’m grateful she lives with us as she does so much in the garden( well, all of it really), and is such a great person. Smart, funny, well educated( librarian), and is fun to be around. Happy Birthday, Sachi!!!

Gas prices are going up here in California so I filled up the Santa Fe and it was $50. Towing the Rv will certainly add to the gas bill but that’s what it takes. Next week we plan on going up to Donner Lake for the maiden voyage. Only 2 nights since I scheduled my Velcade shot for Friday. I could have bumped it out a week but didn’t really think that far ahead so it is what it is.

We’ve been putting things in the Rubicon and it is so great that there will be a place for everything. There was in tent trailer, but everything was in bins that needed to come out and often it got a little messy with bins on the bench. In the Rubicon, the bathroom stuff will be in the bathroom and kitchen stuff in the kitchen. So cool.

After my appt with Dr. Laptalo, that went fine BTW, we headed over to Ikea to get some things for the Trailer. We needed kitchen towels,Ikea’s .79 towels are the best) bath towels, a paring knife, and a comforter and pillows. In the tent trailer we just slept in our down bags, no sheets. So since this is an actual bed we needed a top blanket. I don’t keep extra sheets or blankets in the house just what I use on the bed. Same with towels. We have 4 towels in the bathroom. That’s it. Ikea was busy even at 10:30 in the morning. Crazy.

Today, I’m making an Ooni pizza for dinner. I’m also making a loaf of sourdough sandwich bread in the Zojirushi. I have a few house chores and then I plan on going to the pet bookstore to get some paperbacks for camping.

Flowers by the front door.

.I did the budget for June. We still have 4 more UCD payments from the copay big mistake of August 2019. But since there’s no interest on this , that’s ok. Plus, they did the UCD grant for quite a bit of that month. It was extraordinarily high because Barclay had an IGIV which is $41,000 ( yes, you read that right) each time. So I’m more than happy to pay this copay amount over time.

We have 2 annual bills in June as well. AAA roadside assistance and Costco membership. I put these on auto pay so they will go on our credit card, I hope. If not, it’s the checking acct. Can’t quite remember which I did.

I plan on keeping the food budget to $600 again. That might be a little low for 4 people but I’m still using freezer food and pantry so that should help.

Not frugal Friday

Of course, the main reason is forking over $$ for the RV. But it’s been a long time coming.

It looks bigger than it is !!!

So this is a 16 ft trailer with a slide out. I’ll take some inside pictures soon. It’s everything we could want and more. Solar already on the roof, nice bathroom and a full size trailer refrigerator with a freezer.

The Santa Fe did great and Barclay did a great job driving home. I think uphill to Tahoe will be a stress but we will just have to take it slower. WE still need to buy the hose connections, sewer, water, black water, and the chock blocks, and a Ryobi thing for the stabilizers. It seemed like there were a few other things but I can’t remember now.

We are pretty excited. We’ll( I mean Barclay)will finish cleaning the tent trailer and then we’ll put it on craigs list and marketplace. That should recoup a small amount of money back.

So I took the Dex when I got home and really the 8mg is not really a big deal. I’m still overly active both mentally and physically but it’s nothing like the 16 mg. If my numbers changed on my next lab results then I would need to go back to the 16mg for the last round.

Tonight is Ooni pizza. I plan on only 2. A cheese one and a prosciutto one. I need to look up about the prosciutto one if I put it on before I bake it or after?

Vecade,Round 5, shot #2

I’m heading down to Rocklin for my shot. I’m planning on taking the 8 mg of Dex and compare that to the 12mg last week. 12mg was WAY easier and I pretty much breezed thru it. But for comparisons I thought it’d be interesting to try the 8mg.

Then I’m going to go to Walmart for a pickup. It’s not a big order and there isn’t that much ‘dinner’ stuff in the order but more like things such as yogurts, salad stuff, chips, bread, oh, I added some organic chicken, bananas, bubbly water, and some other things. I love doing the pickup as I’d never get thru Walmart as a store. I never really shopped there so I don’t know the layout and it would probably take me an hour just to get thru. Pickup is a breeze.

I managed to stain most of the new fence and just have around the corner to do or until the stain is gone. I don’t plan on buying another gallon for a bit.

We are still in waiting mode on the RV and actually haven’t heard a word from them. I’m guessing the RV hasn’t come in yet so there’s not much to do. We did decide to break up signing the papers, taking the RV class, and having the hitch put on into 3 separate visits. I just cannot sit thru all that at once. I realized that it’s just sensory overload for me and it’s better for me to take control and do it this way.

I managed to reserve a camp spot up at Donner Lake for 2 nights just to get out and try the trailer. Donner SP is not one of my favorite places but it’s pretty and close to lots of walking trails.

I pulled all kinds of leftovers from the freezer so dinner will be a choice of that. Most are single servings of things like pulled pork, mac and cheese, beans, rice, so whoever wants what can get it. We ended up doing just the black beans and pulled pork and made burritos with avocado and cheese.

Exciting….. my Ooni pizza oven showed up so when I get home from Rocklin I will set it up. I don’t plan on doing a pizza tonight though as the dough isn’t made and I want to get some tile for underneath it. Very Excited though!!!!

Friday Things and back from Capitola!

We had a great trip to New Brighton State Beach.

The weather was picture perfect too. Lots of sun and temperatures in the high 60’s and low 70’s.

The ride down took about 4 hours and the only real traffic was near Los Gatos going over Hwy 17.

We thought it an accident but turned out just tons of people going to Santa Cruz. All in all a nice drive down. We got there and set up in out spot.

We did both realize that we really are going to have to get a new/used trailer as this one has seen better days. But we do still love it and it has taken us lots of places. At New Brighton, there are showers and bathrooms so a tent trailer works fine.

The view from the upper cliffs in the campground.

We had lots of good food. The first night was beans, macaroni salad and hot dogs. The next night we had BBQ chicken/tofu, twice baked potatoes from Gayles and salad. We had a pizza night order but it was terrible. Do NOT go to Village Pizza in Capitola. The last night we had bean tacos with trimmings. A lodge dinner would have been fun but I hadn’t really planned it out.

Another view from the bluffs.

Tuesday we drove over to Santa Cruz and walked the lighthouse trail.

This where the surfers go in the water to catch waves.

Nope, not a surfer:)

Gayles was great and I bought a bunch of treats to bring home including a loaf of their Capitola Sourdough sandwich bread. Delicious.

Today is my last shot of this round. Velcade Round 4, shot 3. I plan on putting together a falafel dinner so my son can cook that up later. I’ll take Dex after lunch.

The weekend will be low profile as I’ll be out of it tomorrow. Sunday I’ll do my Flylady chores.

Frugal Friday

It was kind of a frugal week. I did the Walmart pick up for groceries which did include ice cream. I hardly ever buy ice cream but for some reason did so. I rarely eat ice cream but sometimes I like a spoon full. Anyway, groceries came in @175 including some Rose wine thrown in. I’m hoping to have the food budget come in @$600 this month. I’m not including alcohol in the food total this time just to get an idea. Non food I am including.

Going down to Capitola will cost gas, food and that’s it since the camp spot was paid for back in December. We tend to be fairly loose with food as it is our vacation getaway. And we like going into Gayles or Nob Hill for dinner items.

The last bill of the month is our water bill and that’s next week. The only extra bill we’re dealing with is the UCD medical one from that one month(August) after transplant for Barclay.

I did buy the 2 orchids and clay pots this week. That ended up $38 at Walmart too.

Oh, good news! Both the electrical issues are resolved and the bathroom fan is working again.

Here’s a view:

The window was originally on the outside as B’s office/entryway was a deck. We left the window for air circulation and light.

Tonight is a mix of leftovers, pizza, ravioli and sauce. I didn’t feel like cooking much so these things will get used up.

Velcade, Round 4, shot #2.

I drove down to Rocklin yesterday and had my shot. I was out again by 10:20 and it went well. Sometimes the injection stings some and yesterday it did. Other times I barely feel it, so who knows.

From there I drove up to the Walmart in Rocklin which is right on my way home and picked up my order. They didn’t have the propane bottles we needed for camping so we’ll need to get them somewhere else. Then I went into the nursery side and bought 2 clay pots and 2 orchids. For some reason getting clay pots now is like winning the lottery. They only had 2 on the shelf. Oh well, I’ll keep checking but Home Depot also didn’t have any.

I took my Dex after lunch and rested. Geez, Dex is so weird. Oh well, my daughter made a nice stir fry with tempeh. It was good. Yesterday I experimented with making jasmine rice in the Staub and it came out great. I love my Zojirushi rice maker but wanted to try this as an alternative. The nice thing is that it is half the time . 15 minutes on a boil and then 15 minutes rest. The other method is an hour. It’s nice to have the alternative.

Today is just take it easy and do a few things. I want to air out the bed covers on the line. And move a few more things around in the closet.

We finished the bedroom painting it looks amazing. I’m very glad I screwed up and started the touch up as I wouldn’t have really know how bad it was( well I guess that’s relative. )

The stove hood debacle continues as it wasn’t working unless the bathroom fan was on which I said”No way, am I putting up with that”. I said hire an electrician, people do it all the time. But he managed to get it hooked to something else?? and now the bathroom fan isn’t working. Did I say just hire an electrician??Well, he is pretty handy and always figures out a solution. We had most of the wiring was redone when we moved in but there were some that the guy didn’t do for some reason. ( he wasn’t a real licensed electrician although he did know a lot).

I hope the tar paper can go on the garden shed before we leave on Sunday but the shingles will need to wait. Most of the trim is going on too. It looks good and I think we will like the extra storage.

I have another Goodwill run to make tomorrow but i will have my daughter help. Last with her helping it went really quick plus I couldn’t lift the monitor anyway.

Tonight my son cooks and I’m not sure what he planning. Maybe I’ll check the freezer but I know I have lots of salad stuff.

Plus, the most exciting thing this week is he gets his Covid shot tomorrow. Hurray!!!!

Simple Sunday on Monday…

Somehow between painting and other things the day got away from me. I did get another wall in the bedroom done. What a difference it makes. I told B that it must have been longer ago that it was painted than I originally thought. It is looking very clean and crisp. Then I got inside the ONE closet we have and it was a mess. I tidied and moved some things so it looks better but today I plan to take all my canning jars out and put them in the barn in a box. I’m not planning on any canning this year except maybe salsa and tomato sauce so I can put them in a bin out of the closet.

This coming around from the door side to the window side where I’ll paint today. The contrast is startling:( I like the grey trim but wouldn’t do it again as painting over dark colors is a two coat job. I’ll just stick to white.

The yard is filled with lots of flowers and this geranium is a new one. A bright red.

Here is an assortment of succulents that were just taken out of the green house.

This is the water pond with a yellow water lily. My daughter bought goldfish so their in there too now. Last time we had goldfish the raccoons had a fish feast so it’s been a while and she is covering it at night.

Barclay has been working on getting the new stove hood up. Everything in this house is more complicated and he had to fix the wiring in the attic. But it’s done and the hood should go up today. We really needed a new one the other was just gross. I’m guessing stove hoods have a life expectancy since there is grease involved even though I clean it diligently, it’s never really really clean.

The roof is on the shed so now it’s only the doors and trim. The roof felting and roofing will be put on later.

Next Sunday we head out for our first trip in over a year to Capitola. It’ll be great to see the ocean and just camp. We do plan a few walks in Santa Cruz but mostly just hanging out. Gayle’s bakery is at the top of the list too. I don’t plan to over do the food as I figure we can go to the store( Nob Hill and/or Trader Joe’s ) and get stuff. I plan our basic camping foods, spaghetti, tacos, and whatever else looks good.

Last night I made this delicious dinner. This was from The Washington Post, Eat Voraciously Newsletter called Tortilla Espanola with two Aiolis. Of course, I didn’t read the 2 aiolis right so it ended up one with the smoked paprika and basil in it. Still it was delicious. I added a little Manchego cheese and I think that made it even better. I evened flipped it out of the cast iron pan. I have a picture but it’s on B’s phone. I’ll try and put it up later.