Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Guest Blogger: A Reader's Success Story!

Fellow homeschooling Mom, Theresa Jacobsen, left the following comment on my blog over at the Homeschool Channel.  I was inspired by her success and wanted to share it with you. I am pasting it below with her permission.

"Last spring ('10) I decided that I wanted to spend less time shopping....that was my shop no more than twice a month.  At 2.5-3 hrs a week grocery shopping, if I could reduce my trips to 2 a month ("others do it, why not me?", I asked), I would gain 5-6 hours 'back' in my month.  I really needed those hours and it seemed imprudent not to recover them if I could.

I reached my goal by summer and now easily shop only twice each month (I could shop once a month if I had an addt'l fridge...we drink a lot of milk and can't keep a cow/goat here in the burbs :o/ ....I do freeze milk) In the process, I've reduced my grocery budget by $125 each month (planning and buying in bulk/quantity really does save money) and I have a very well stocked pantry and freezer.  With the 'savings' over time, I've purchased a pressure canner and new extra large pot for water bath canning -and with more time at home instead of the store, I've learned to use them :o) , a FoodSaver, various other small items AND truck tires :o)  I also had extra money to set up several edible garden plots in my suburban back yard, although last yr's 'bounty' was mostly knowledge :-o  So now I have a $125 monthly grocery budget 'hedge' against inflation and I still manage to add to as well as rotate my pantry.

I make my own laundry detergent and fabric softener and easily have a yr's supply of those ingredients which readily fit on just one shelf in the cabinet above my entire laundry room couldn't contain a yr's supply of 'store bought'.  I've canned chicken and beef, sweet potatoes (purchased at .10 a lb), b.e. peas (the only 'abundance' my garden produced last yr), various soups and chili, strawberry jam, strawberry syrup and blueberries.  I'm having a blast, and my 20yr old daughter is learning alongside me....we're both having such fun.  I am "not afraid of snow", Prov 31, or immediate inflation as I "looketh well" to the ways of my household.  I make a pretty mean biscuit (my lovely daughter's is much better than mine) and we keep a large container of homemade 'bisquick' on hand.  I "strengtheneth" my arms while kneading my bread vs 'curling iron' in the gym (I used to do that).  I certainly "eateth not the bread of idleness" :o) and God has blessed me and my family.

Is keeping a pantry and looking after one's family unBiblical?  sigh, yawn; some women have their hair and nails 'done' on a weekly basis while their cupboards are bare. 

Anyway, that's the story behind my beginning a real pantry; maybe my comments will inspire someone?"

I don't know about you, but I am definitely encouraged! I love her insight in the next-to-last paragraph about many womens' priorities. That is definitely brain fodder to chew on!  I also had to literally LOL at her workout.  I said that very thing to someone the other day.  I get such a workout kneading my wheat bread dough, that it is foolish for me to give that up to justify getting a fancier mixer-and then go hit the elliptical for a total body workout!

More seriously though, I love how she reinforces the concept that the contentment and peace we feel after stocking our pantry is not born of pride or a lack of faith. Rather it is the fulfillment of all those promises made to a wise woman in the scriptures.  God has provided food and tools for our homes. If we utilize them, we are being resourceful, not rejecting.

Thank you again, Theresa, for taking the precious time to share that.  If anyone else has a Centsible success story, or testimony to share with other readers, please do! I think we all find comfort and motivation in other peoples' exhortations :-)

Blessings to you and your Homestead,
Hillary At Home


  1. Thank you so much for this. I agree about the bread-kneading, also! I would never want a bread machine - kneading is so much more fun, and a great way to get your frustrations out! I have worried about the concept of stocking up vs. trusting God, and this really does put a good perspective on it!

  2. Isn't it a great testimony? I really do like the fresh perspective she gives the debate. I'm glad you were encouraged, too :)