Ladybugs, thank you for joining me for another edition of Duke’s Mixture 06.16.2022. Again, this week, I am joining my friends Rebecca at Knit by God’s Hand and Jennifer at All 4 Boys for Thankful Thursday. And my buddy Marsha at Marsha in the Middle for 10 on the 10th (almost a week late). But first I want to share some worries heavy on my heart right now.
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As I began typing this post, I had one eye on the news, in particular the stock market ticker running along the bottom of the broadcast. The Dow Jones is ping-ponging back and forth today, generally down across the board after a very difficult week so far. The newscasters are saying that everyone they know is adjusting their spending and their summer plans right now in response to our precarious U.S. economy. For today’s post I want to talk a little bit about that along with offering up the things I am thankful for.
Are you and your family being more frugal right now? If so, in what ways are you pinching pennies and trying to save money? We have both had Covid, so have been quarantined which has kept us from going out to eat, to the movies, or meandering the outlet mall after church on Sunday.
I love being home but by yesterday, I was pretty sure I was suffering more from cabin fever than Covid. When my at-home Covid test indicated I was negative, I grabbed my mask and headed out to buy gas and to stop at Goodwill for some used books for an art project.
Tonight PC is coming home a little later than usual and he offered to cook. Translation: he offered to pick something up for dinner. My initial reaction was YES!!! But then I remembered how quickly last Friday’s hamburgers, fries and sodas went through a $20 bill. So, I told him I would cook. We had brats, baked beans, homemade French fries and Ramen slaw.
Other ways we are trying to save a little money now…
- watching TV at home rather than going to the movies. We did see “Top Gun 2” and both liked it very much. But in the past, we have gone to see less-than-stellar movies just for something to do. At $20 for tickets and $20 for concessions, we can’t afford to go just for kicks.
- turning off our sprinklers for a day or two when we get rain.
- using my oven early in the day to cook things. We reheat them in the microwave closer to meal time which keeps the house cooler during the hottest part of the day.
- running the AC upstairs. I am cold natured so even with our triple digit afternoons, I can keep the AC off. or set on 76*. The unit for the upstairs is set on *72 but I generally crank it up to 76*. The cool air drifts downstairs to keep the first floor cool, too. The downstairs unit is rarely on.
- washing laundry in cold water. With the exception of our towels and workout clothes.
- making one day a week the errand-running day to save on gas.
- cleaning out the pantry, freezer and fridge before I go shopping next time. As may remember, I do one big grocery shopping a month, generally at the U.S. Army commissary on Ft. Bliss. Since we have been sick with Covid, I missed going to the store the first of this month so before I go, I am going through everything in the pantry, freezer and fridge. Going to write dates on the canned goods. check for expiration dates on staples. Once I get groceries in, will make sure the older things are forward, in front of the newer things.
- doing a little more in the way of meal planning. I usually identify recipes I want to make as I create my grocery list for the month. But we haven’t done the big grocery shopping this month yet. Instead, I went through the freezer to see what meat I have and figured out meals around that for the next week. PC’s tummy has been upset so I fixed potato soup and chicken pot pie hoping the blander food would be gentle on it. Have shrimp and smoked sausage so fixing a gumbo in the next few days – decided not bland!!
Are you worried at all? Doing anything differently right now to save a few cents? At the risk of sounding like a total alarmist, I have been joining my daughters pinning emergency planning ideas, here, on Pinterest. Three years ago, if you had asked me, I would never have thought our country could be paralyzed by a pandemic. But it was. I would never have dreamed that in the land of milk and honey, mothers would struggle to find baby formula for their infants. And I would not have imagined I would be paying almost $5 a gallon for gas. This is a list of high demand items that people tend to want and need during difficult times. Thinking it might be good to store them up. Just in case.
10 on the 10th 06.2022
- Are you planning to take a vacation anytime soon? Please share! This is kind of up in the air. I would like to visit Brennyn and family this summer. They are going to South Padre Island again and have invited us to tag along. Just not sure about working out all the details. If we don’t accompany them to the beach, then I will visit them at home in Ft. Worth. But that is the extent of vacation plans for summer 2022.
- Have you recently gone on vacation? Tell us about it. We did escape LIFE for the Memorial Day weekend by heading to Loew’s Ventana Canyon Resort in Tucson, Arizona. Drove the Mustang out there with the convertible top down.
- Stopped at Keeling Schaefer vineyards tasting room in Wilcox going out to the Tucson and returning home. Their Kokopelli Sweet Lucy Moscato is the perfect summer wine.
- Hiked 7 Falls, a whopping 8.2 mile hike, in triple digit heat.
- Enjoyed a massage.
- Indulged in dinner at the Flying V Bar & Grill and Piazza Gavi Italian Restaurant.
- Slept great, swam, read, snuggled.
- Watched “Top Gun: Maverick”.
- What is your favorite way to travel? Like my buddy Marsha at Marsha in the Middle, I really enjoy traveling by train. Have only done it a few times but it was great fun. Being able to watch the world pass outside my window. Having more room than in a car or plane. It is just more charming than air and automobile travel.
- If money were no object, where would you go and why? Can I be greedy and pick a handful of different places? So lots of trips?
- If money is no object, first I would grab PC and go to England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales…the countries where our ancestors originated.
- Would do a quick trip to Hawaii to see Pearl Harbor, and the beaches, PC in tow.
- A cruise or trip with PC, my daughters and their families to somewhere Caribbean or Mexico.
- An Alaskan cruise with my best fella.
- Whole family trip – girls, their families, my sister and brother, their families, PC, maybe even a couple of my cousins?? – back to Sky High Ranch outside of Creede, Colorado (now called the Village at Sky Hi), where my parents took our family when I was young.
- Revisit Boston and NYC with PC, his brother John and wife Greta. Preferably in the fall. Haven’t been back to Boston since we moved in 1968. Would try to throw in a day trip to Buffalo, where I was born, and Niagra Falls, too.
- Fall trip to the Smoky Mountains with PC, my sister and fam, brother and fam, former sister-in-law and husband (maybe all the kids??), stay in a cabin, hike and attend a University of Tennessee football game.
Come Fly With Me
- Who would be your favorite person to take on vacation and why? PC. He is my traveling buddy. We compliment each other. And he has a great sense of direction, is able to put together fabulous itineraries, is generally up for anything once. My sister is another fun person to travel with.
- What do you absolutely have to pack when you go on vacation? My ‘crazy’ meds. They balance me. I don’t go anywhere without them. Take them every.single.day.
- What are your memories of your all-time favorite vacation? My 2 favorite vacations were like dreams. Like something other people get to do but I don’t. The first was an all-inclusive vacation in 2013 to Cancun where we stayed at Excellence Playa Mujeres all-adult resort. I was in AWE. Had no idea there were places like this. Felt like a princess. In 2017, PC was working for a time in Germany and I went over to visit for a week. What a delightful time we had. Probably tried to squeeze too many things into 7 days but it was an amazing experience.
I am so thankful to Marsha for taking over the 10 on the 10th series when LIFE bogged me down this spring. Hoping to be able to join her again in hosting come July.
Joining Rebecca Jo and Jennifer in sharing the hosting responsibilities for the Thankful Thursday series. However, I have been away from blogging for several months. Some weeks, you might discover posts from all 3 of us, other Thursdays, it might just be one of us hosting. Sometimes you might find a post from me on a Friday!! But whatever the case, YOU are always welcome to join us!!
STRAIGHT FROM MY GRATITUDE JOURNAL
For my Thankful Thursday posts, I usually share the ‘gratefuls’ I’ve listed in my gratitude journal over the week or month, whatever length of time has elapsed since my last Thankful Thursday post. Always lots of things to be thankful for even if I don’t get around to writing a post about them all. This is the gratitude I have been using for almost a year. And this was my most recent Thankful Thursday post, if you missed it.
So thankful for:
- mild cases of Covid for PC and me; still coughing and regaining our strength, still a little foggy headed but we could have been so much sicker
- my sister Valerie visiting Mom while my brother Kevin was out of town
- the baby hummingbirds safely flying from their nest
- rain, twice in a week
- opportunities to make extra money during these worrisome times
- Brennyn’s new opportunity at work
- Lauren’s recent switch to part-time work
- the cactus blooms
- loving fathers in my life – my own, PC, my brother and brothers-in-law
- some quiet mornings on my patio
- finally receiving a settlement toward the repairs on our pool, 5 years and 2 lawsuits after its faulty original construction, praying we can finally get things fixed the right way
- peaceful moments floating in the pool with PC
This was another kind of lost week. I went through the motions a lot of days – doing laundry, ironing, working in the yard, picking up the house. But just haven’t felt like myself. We have a 3-day weekend as Paul is off on Friday. Hoping we can rest, relax and get back to normal.
Did you participate in 10 on the 10th this month? If, so I will be by to visit and read your responses. And if you have a thankful Thursday post, won’t you link up with us below?
I am thankful for the friendship of my blogging buddies. Grateful to be reconnecting with this community.
Hugs and kisses,