Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A new leaf

We, here at the Washburn household, are turning over a new leaf. John and I sat down yesterday and figured out our budget, something we've been avoiding for a while now. As we were talking about ways to cut back costs we decided a couple things. Now, when I tell you the first one you may not think it's that big of a deal. But any mom, especially with lots of young children, will understand how big of a sacrifice this is for me. As of yesterday, the Washburn's will not be buying bagged, dry ceral anymore! Oh! Even typing it makes me stressed. Well, maybe not really. I've always been outraged at how expensive it is to buy ceral. For a while I was buying all of our ceral at a local food salvage store but even that was kind of expensive. Plus, it's very hard to find ceral (unless you buy organic which is $$$) that has no "bad stuff" in it. So, John and I agreed that cold ceral was out. So far things have been going okay. Ha! Maybe not. This morning the children woke up starving and they had to wait about 20 minute while I fixed them some oatmeal (real oatmeal, not that boxed stuff). By the time breakfast was on the table Luke was crying on the floor and so hungry I had to feed him! But, this can all be remedied if I would only GET MY LAZY BONES OUT OF BED EARLIER!!! I have the bad (BAD, BAD) habit of waking up when the children wake up. I hate it. I always have. But I am a slave to it. It's actually something I've been praying about lately and I really feel the Lord telling me I need to do it. Sigh. Maybe this will be my motivation. Here are some of my breakfast ideas:
~ muffins (easy to make ahead and freeze)
~ oatmeal
~ pancakes/waffles ( again, make ahead and freeze)
~ french toast
~ homemade granola (I have two REALLY good recipes)
~ eggs and garlic rice (okay, this one sounds wierd. But my sister in law is from the Phillipians and she makes this for us whenever we come visit and it is WONDERFUL. John's favorite, by far.)

That's what I got so far. If you have any suggestions, let me know. My plan is to make a schedule and each day of the week have the same thing. That will make it easier for me, I think.

We've also made the decision to make the switch to cloth diapers. Well, switch back really. We had been using them and then when we moved I used disposibles and never went back. So, my very expensive Fuzzi Bunz have been sitting- not used. But I need some advice. I've written emails to a couple people asking this questions but, people have lives, I understand! After the diaper is soiled what do you do with it?? I understand you dump the...ahem...solids in the toilet but then do you drop the diapers in a bucket with some sort of solution?? If so, what? Anybody know? I'd really like to start using them as soon as possible so if anyone could solve this mystery I'd be endebted.

There are a few other things we are doing too. I'm baking all of our bread from now on. John is riding his bike to work. We are keeping the heat at 65* and so on. But those are the two things that will probably effect me the most. It should be an interesting adjustment period! But to tell you the truth, I feel really good about it. We have been wanting to get a lot...simpler. And more self sufficient. So, I think this is a good move for us. I've just got to give it up to the Lord! Thanks for reading, again. God bless!

Running the race,


carmen said...

Way to go! In general, those are things we try to do as well. I just sent you an e-mail about the diaper thing. Good luck with the breakfast task!

Jenny said...

Hi there- this is Jenny and I work at FuzziBunz. Saw your blog and thought I could help. Knock solids in the toilet. You can also buy a "diaper sprayer" that attaches to your toilet to rinse the extra messy diapers - although most of it will dissolve in the wash. No need to soak your diaper in anything. Store soiled diapers in a dry diaper pail (you can buy a washable diaper pail) and then wash with a very mild, residue free detergent (preferably one that is biodegradable - brands Vaska, Charlie's Soap or Allen's Naturally). Good luck using your FuzziBunz. You are doing the best thing for your baby and the right thing for our planet. Cheers!

Em said...

Amanda! Great posting! I'll try to find your email address and forward you an email that Heather sent me, concerning her use of Fuzzi Bunz...because we're interested in them, too!

As for breakfasts, I didn't see regular toast on the list. Maybe it's not too exciting, but it's easy! I know you're already making bread. You could just toast some up with peanut butter/jam/butter....that's what I eat every morning for breakfast with fruit and milk. We also stopped buying cereal for the same reasons!

Paprika said...

Your ideas are inspiring, Amanda! Here is a link to some 6-week bran muffins that you can store the batter in the fridge for up to 6 weeks. They have sugar in them, but that could probably be substituted. I lessen the amount.

Leah said...

I'll be excited to hear about the diaper venture...I think if I get to stay home with future Stutzman #2 who is not yet conceived :) I will be trying cloth diapers as well! But, since I'll be working for awhile we decided to keep with disposable for now (even though i KNOW how environmentally unfriendly they are!!) It kind of kills me to throw them away knowing where they're going...but...well, I don't have a good excuse except we'll be using them for another few months.

Yogurt makes a yummy breakfast as well! As does egg casserole...mmmm...and toast w/cream cheese! I'm getting hungry!

Marvin, Erica and Calvin said...

I have the same problem about dragging myself out of bed in the morning. I recently check out a book from the library called Sleep on it: Prepare Delicious Meals the Night Before That You Can Pop In the Oven the Next Day! It was written by a lady who owns a bed and breakfast. There were some good ideas in there. Also you could probably cook oatmeal in the crockpot as long as yours switches the warm feature after it is finished cooking. Best in this endeavor

Marie said...

Here's my deal with cereal: I'll buy it as long as it's under $2 per box. If it's over that I won't buy it. I know you've had a hard time finding coupons, but occasionally if you go online there will be some great coupons for cereal. Last year in my endeavor to really cut down on sugar I strived to find a healthy cereal with very little sugar and tons of fiber. The best one I found was plain old shredded wheat. No frosted anything on top. Devin and Addison eat it with bananas and I eat it with splenda and cinnamon on top.

I totally understand about oatmeal taking a long time to make. I was at Target after work one night because we were out and they were out of Old Fashioned, but they did have Quick Oats. These had pretty much the same amount of fiber and no sugar or salt or anything. Plus it only takes two minutes on the stove! WOO HOO!

I think your big issue with your fuzziBunz is that dumb ebay lady sold you the wrong inserts. You might also have to do a stripping wash. It looked like whenever leakage was the case, it was because there was some built up residue on the diapers (perhaps the previous owner was using the wrong kind of detergent?) I think Heather has a link to that on her teeny greeny site.

Amanda, don't forget that you're pregnant and super tired! Don't beat yourself up over not getting up early enough. Maybe even just 15 minutes earlier will help.

Good luck with everything! I have one last piece of advice from our Dave Ramsey adventures these past two years: you'll have to rework your budget. A lot. It won't work the first month and it probably won't work the second. Just keep tweaking it and eventually it will get easier. We had to increase our grocery money three times because the number I picked out of thin air the first time didn't work.

jenifriend said...

I have an idea for you that DF is falling in love with as a breakfast addition; it's baked peaches. If you want to e-mail me I will gladly send you the recipe.