keeping my cool

The dog days are upon us and we are at the beginning of a long heatwave and I'm not looking forward to it.  Life goes on whether it's hot or not so I may as well get over it right?  I've been working a little bit and have to pull myself together for that.

This outfit from Everlane has come to my rescue.  It's the easy chino and cotton muscle tee.  The tee cotton has a beautiful drape to it that belies its $22 price.  Together they look almost like a jumpsuit without the hassle of undressing to use the ladies.  Both are so comfortable it feels like I'm walking around in my pj's. I keep mixing and matching these pieces with everything.  I recently wore the tank with a pair of vintage silk sateen trousers which is not where you think a muscle tank would work...but it did.  What do you wear on these v hot days?  I normally wear dresses but I keep turning to this situation.  I also have the cotton muscle in white  just to keep you on your toes.  x

How I do my easy messy bun

Happy Friday Loves.  You've asked how I do my messy bun so I made an awkward little tutorial showing you how.  I started wearing this bun early last year when it seemed as if we were living at the hospital.  It doesn't matter if your hair is clean or dirty, long or short.  With a few bobby pins maybe even short hair can work.  You'll get to see just how wild my hair is without a blow dryer and flat iron.  I just can't with all that any longer.  I love the ease of this bun and I hope you do too.

Have a beautiful weekend. x

7 simple ways I save money in the kitchen

Hello Dear Reader.  Many of you want to know if I have any tips or tricks on saving money.  I feel like I do but honestly, you guys have just as many.  The emails and comments are loaded with great ideas.  I'll share a few things I do consistently that add up. They may seem small but some save money and some save the planet.


The biggest way I save money is by not buying animal products.  Say what you will but they are expensive in all ways financial and ecological.  Other things I do is grow my own herbs.  I do have a few tomato plants growing but I save a ton year round by just growing herbs.  I can freeze them and also dry them.  Right now I'm harvesting basil that I'll use this winter in my recipes.  A friend just gave me a gazillion apricots and I've washed and frozen most of them for desserts and smoothies all winter long.  I always always have a container of fruit and veg scraps and they wind up in broth or my compost pile.  Nothing is wasted.  I was able to plant my small garden this year with soil I made 100% myself.  I even impressed me doing that 😹.


I still shop the .99 store for lots of things.  A few of you said you enjoyed it when I would post my shopping receipts so you could see just how cheap it is.  I am finding I spend even less when I only go to the market every week to 10 days.


I don't buy bottled water, I just use tap.  I fill a pitcher and put it in the refrigerator sometimes with lemons.  Now when I drink bottled water it tastes like plastic to me.  Our water is safe here.


My kitchen gets lots of sunlight and especially late afternoon very hot sun.  I hung my insulated drapes in here and what a difference they make.  My electric bill and the planet thank me.


I do batch cooking in the summer because of the heat.  I'll put a pot of potatoes or beans on early in the morning and use them in tacos, burritos and salads.  Yesterday I made a bunch of zucchini boats filled with Mexican and Italian ingredients.  Zucchini is basically free here because all my friends grow it and give me their surplus.


I keep my pantry as fresh and well-organized as possible so I can see at a glance what I'm low on.  I try not to buy processed food and cook from scratch most meals.  I build all my menus on what I have fresh and just fill in beans, rice or pasta to round out the meal.  It's so easy that way.  Also, I rarely purchase paper towels or paper anything.


I hand wash all my dishes because I don't have a dishwasher so I  save on water and electricity.  Of course I get my dish soap from the .99 store and will pour it into a prettier bottle (not always!) bc I'm a cheapskate.

I hope I haven't left anything out but if I did please add them in the comments. x

What I've spent on clothing this year

Hello Sunday and friends.  Thank you so much for all the comments and emails I've received.  So many emails with very detailed advice and suggestions and courage!  Thank you so v much.  A lot of you say don't pay off the house and more of you say pay it off.  It's such a personal decision and one I don't take lightly.  I'm still in the camp of pay off the house but I hear the other side loud and clear.  I suppose it depends on your life experience which side of the issue you land on.  I will go more into detail about my personal decision in a future post.

But today I wanted to do a check-in on how much I've spent so far this year on clothing.  I've been combing through my numbers bc that's what I do and this is what I saw.  I remember frantically rushing through Target one January day and grabbing a pair of black jeans.  I had no time to try them on and they sat in the bag for a few weeks before I even did.  That's the way things were in January 😢.  Anyway they fit perfectly and I kept them.  Also, Everlane kindly sent me a few free things to review which you've seen but those were gifts so do I count them?  I'm choosing to tally what came out of my account.  Here is the list...

Target black jean $15
H&M Blue Toile Dress $19
H&M Red Toile Top $34 (Love this little linen/cotton top!)
Thrifted white cotton top $15

Total $83

I really don't plan to spend anything this fall or winter but if I come across something one never knows.  Over the years of blogging I notice I mostly shop in Spring and Fall.  I suppose that's pretty normal?  Of course I have no idea what normal is.  Do you?  x

Focus Baby

Once upon a time we were dedicated to paying our house off early.  And then disaster of the v worst kind struck and all plans for everything were abandoned.  This is another one of those things that I knew Larry wanted for me and that is to have this house paid off.  With a normal salary it wasn't that hard to send extra money each month toward the principal balance.  But now it is a different story. 

But the other day I thought to myself why not?  Just do the best I can and see what happens.  The issue, for me at least, is the thought that I'm making the wrong decision and if I've learned anything this past year is that best laid plans.....


But I've made my decision and I'll do my best to let the worry go.  A little money applied consistently can make a big difference. Discipline will be required.  Signs have been placed around the house to keep me focused.  I wonder if I'll find them annoying after awhile?  Right now they feel good.  x
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