Tag Archives: Frugality

Healthy Sugar-Free ‘Ice Cream’ Made With Frozen Fruit

by Tammy Taylor

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Recently we were honored to have a guest poster, Ashley share her experience of going through a full month with No.  Refined.  Sugar!  In her post about going through Week Two of that challenge she shared with us a quick & easy hot-weather treat – Healthy Sugar-Free ‘Ice Cream’ made with frozen bananas and berries.  Check out this recipe for a nice cool treat on a hot summer’s day that’s actually GOOD for you…

Healthy Frozen 'Ice Cream' Treat Using frozen berries & bananas. It's creamy like ice cream and the flavors are endless. Curious? Check it out. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Homestead Hack: How To Keep Track Of Gift Card Balances

by Tammy Taylor~

Gift Cards, we all love ’em!  RancherMan & I receive gift cards as gifts sometimes.  Many of our family & friends say since we don’t like lots of ‘stuff’, a restaurant gift card is a good option.  We agree!  Going to a restaurant for a meal is a treat for us since we don’t get to do it often.  We have a collection of gift cards.  Some are for restaurants, some are for home improvement stores, etc.  We keep them in a small leather pouch in our glove box. That way when we’re out & about we can stop for a quick meal or to pick up a part. Maybe you’ve received a gift card recently and are anxious to put it to good use.  But how often do you use the entire value of a gift card on the first time?  Not often, right?  As you thumb through your gift cards it’s hard to tell how much you still have available to you.  But no more!  RancherMan’s discovered an easy way to keep track.  Check out today’s Homestead Hack.

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How To Harvest Mammoth Sunflower Seeds

by Tammy Taylor~

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I love sunflowers!  As a matter of fact they may be my absolute favorite flower.  I mean, what’s not to love?  They’re super easy to grow, they bloom prolifically and I’ve always said “Yellow is a HAPPY color!”  I plant a row of Mammoth Sunflowers at the edge of my garden every year.  I love the look of the cheery yellow blossoms.  And my mom always comments about how beautiful they are when she visits.

This year I planted the sunflowers along the chicken fence side of the garden.  Those huge sunflower plants offer shade during the heat of the day for my chickens.  Oh, and our bees love them too. That’s a lot of bang for my package-of-seeds buck! But now it’s time to harvest those sunflower seeds.  Come see what I did.

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Fresh Garden-Veggie Pico de Gallo in Minutes!

by Tammy Taylor~

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RancherMan & I love pico de gallo.  That zesty mix of tomatoes, onion, garlic and jalapenos is one of our favorite ways to enjoy garden veggies.  This year RancherMan even requested that I plant a pico de gallo garden to assure we can enjoy that culinary delight whenever we like.  I was, of course, happy to oblige him!  I always have onions and garlic planted anyway.  Of course I have tomatoes planted every year as well.  And c’mon, there’s never gonna be a garden season when I don’t have copious amounts of jalapenos growing out there.  So I just needed to include cilantro in my planting plan to fulfill his request.  Recently we were invited to a family cookout so we told them we’d bring fresh homemade pico de gallo.  You’re not gonna believe how quickly it all comes together!

Fresh pico de gallo in minutes using fresh garden vegetables. Ripe tomatoes, onion, garlic, jalapenos and cilantro. ENJOY your veggies! #TaylorMadeHomestead

 

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Using Natural Materials: Straw In The Garden

by Tammy Taylor~

Y’all know we live in Texas.  You also know it’s typically hot and dry during our summertime months.  So I’m careful to mulch our garden heavily.  Mulching helps the plants in many ways.  It not only conserves that precious moisture, but it also moderates soil temps.  I like to mulch with natural materials whenever possible.  A typical gardening year will see me mulching with grass clippings, leaves or spent hay.

But I have a section of my garden that holds my Concord Grapevine.  I’ve trained it to grow along the fence.  It’s LOADED with grapes!  But I’ve also vowed to keep the Bermuda grass from creeping into my garden.  So all the walkways in the garden plus a wide perimeter swath is mulched with wood chips.  But the grapevine is right at the lifeline.  So to keep bermuda from creeping in around the grapevine I surrounded it with 3 bales of wheat straw.  The purpose was just to deny sneaky Bermuda the sunlight as it attempts to grow beneath the bales to get into my garden.  Permission:  DENIED!

But those straw bales are several years old now.  They’re just spent and starting to deteriorate.  I need to replace them.

I use organic matter for mulch in my garden - often grass clippings or spent hay. But come see how a bale of straw does double duty! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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How To Make A Cute Clothespin Apron

by Tammy Taylor~

My baby sister has recently been bitten hard by the ‘green’ bug.  Oh she’s been environmentally-aware all her life, but now all of a sudden she’s taking it to the next level.  These days she’s even making her own homemade yogurt and cottage cheese.  And although she’s always enjoyed hanging a few things on the line, she’s transitioning into hanging more & more clean laundry under that blue Texas sky to dry.  Not only does she love the savings, but she’s discovered there’s really no substitute for that amazing aroma of sunshine on clean laundry!

When she had a birthday recently I put on my thinking cap. Y’all know we like to make homemade gifts whenever possible, but what would she like. Hummm…  I KNOW!  I’ll make her a clothespin apron!

For very little money I made a clothespin apron. I used fabric from a thrift store and some cotton cording. See my easy tutorial. It was an awesome gift! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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How To Make A Rustic Cedar Log Solar Light

by Tammy Taylor~

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Right next to the house lies our barn paddock.  It is a small paddock that features our amazing 1880’s barn as well as a small fenced area.  This paddock is used often to wean calves, work the herd or separate specific cows for whatever reason.  In this paddock was a huge, very old cedar tree.  I loved that thing, it was massive!  But last year it died and RancherMan had to pull it down.  Broke my heart, y’all!  He took one of the huge limbs and made me a laundry pole, I love that.  And he used several of the straight branches to make beautiful walking sticks too.  Then the rest of this tree was hauled to our burn pile.

But with our annual RanchFest family reunion coming up I panicked.  In a few days that bonfire will be lit & it’ll be gone forever!  So I asked RancherMan to go to the burn pile & cut off about 5 ft of that huge tree.  Puzzled, he placated me…

I made a cute rustic 3-tier cedar log solar light feature for my home's front walk. I love the way it turned out and it was inexpensive #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Another Great Use For Repurposed Coffee Canisters

by Tammy Taylor~

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So y’all know RancherMan & I are coffee drinkers.  You know, like in “Stay away until I’ve had my coffee” kinda coffee drinkers.  Having a ‘Skip Coffee Day’ is never an option, so don’t even ask.  But we don’t want sweetsy, foamy flavored, overly-sugared drinks.  We want coffee.  Strong, black, delicious.  We prefer Folders coffee in the Taylor Household.  That plastic canister it’s sold in comes in handy for many uses when it’s empty.  We store chicken feed and dog food in them.  And RancherMan uses them in the shop to gather bolts & hardware together.  And I’ve even spray painted them and used them for sharing plants from my garden with friends.  But I still need to put them to use.  Our coffee consumption goes on, ya know??  So here’s another simple way those empty canisters still help me out.

Repurposing Coffee Canisters In The Garden. Those plastic coffee canisters. You love 'em, but how many can you use? I'm sharing another way I'm able to repurpose them. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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How To Get FREE Veggie Plants For Your Garden

by Tammy Taylor~

So I recently shared an update on my veggie garden progress.  If you’ve read it you know my peppers and tomatoes were pretty much a bust this year due to our weird spring.  You see, I planted seeds in my indoor greenhouse and placed that greenhouse at a south-facing window in my home like I always do.  But the constant cloudy weather this spring hampered a good germination.  The few plants that did germinate were hardened off & placed in the garden.  But you know peppers and tomatoes like a little more sun, a little more heat.  All those seeds were just a big, fat bust. I’m disappointed since RancherMan had requested a Pico-De-Gallo garden this year.  Garlic?  Check.  Onions?  Check.  Cilantro?  Check.  Tomatoes?  Hummm… But I was recently able to replenish some of the vacant areas in my garden.  It cost me ZILCH.  “How can you get free veggie plants for your garden?” you might wonder.  I’m so glad you asked!

Free Volunteer Plants. Tomato planting was a bust in the garden this year, will I do w/o tomatoes? See how I've outfitted my veggie garden with FREE plants #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Need A Cute Gift Quick? Inexpensive Pink Himalayan Mineral Soak!

by Tammy Taylor~

RancherMan & I enjoy a fun tradition with a small group of our friends.  Every month we all gather to celebrate whomever is having a birthday that month.  The honoree gets to choose their preferred restaurant location and we all meet to offer birthday cheer to them.  We always sing “Happy Birthday” to them, family style(That means purposely horribly off-tune and out of sync with each other)  LOL!  Way too much fun!  Although gifts/cards are not expected,  cards are often brought & sometimes small gifts are brought as well.  But a cute, thoughtful gift doesn’t have to break the bank.

Pink Himalayan Mineral Soak. A cute, thoughtful gift doesn't have to break the bank. See how I made up several cute, inexpensive Himalayan Pink Bath Salt gifts. #TaylorMadeHomestead

 

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