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Phew, what a weekend! We definitely didn’t save money, but we did a lot of projects and had a lot of fun. πŸ™‚ I was a little shocked at how fast time flew by; I guess I’m a little spoiled after last week’s three-day weekend. Le sigh.

Anyhoo, see how we spent our money and time this weekend!

Tire chair

Next week is bulk pickup with our trash service–and that means it’s Picky Christmas, y’all! I went through a few neighbors’ trash piles and found some treasures. Namely, we walked away with a fancy moss-covered hanging planter, as well as an old truck tire.

I’m a total Pinterest junkie and I’ve been wanting to make this DIY tire chair for a while. I was ecstatic to get my hands on a tire to make it happen! We’ve been talking about making a tuffet in our bonus room for meditating, so this is a perfect use for a tire chair. πŸ™‚

I’m using this quick video tutorial to make my tire chair. Unfortunately I didn’t realize that the tire in the tutorial was from a standard car and our tire is from a truck. We had to buy more materials to do the project, but it’s going to still be awesome!

Mr. Picky Pincher is about to cut out a wooden cover for the seat base, which I’ll make from foam, polyfill, and a thrift store sheet. Hopefully we can get it completed by next weekend! πŸ™‚

tire chair

Let it grow

I realized that it was time to start planning our fall garden, so we made a trip to our local nursery. We bought seeds for broccoli, cabbage, kale, pumpkin, spaghetti squash, carrots, and rainbow chard. We also got some seed tents so we can start the seeds inside and transplant them once the weather cools down a bit.



Mr. Picky Pincher is celebrating his brand spankin’ new office by decorating it with some plants. He got an ivy plant as well as five succulents to decorate his office. Now he just needs to find the perfect quirky container for the succulents, so we’ll make a trip to a few thrift stores for inspiration. πŸ™‚

Halloween prep!

Halloween is my favorite holiday of the year. Last year we weren’t able to celebrate it very well since we were in the middle of a renovation. This year I wanted to make sure I had a costume and decorations in place to get in the spirit of the season.

After some poking around on Pinterest for DIY Halloween costumes, I came up with the perfect idea! I’m going to dress up as a Crazy Cat Lady. πŸ™‚ When I told Mr. Picky Pincher, he said, “How is that different from who you are every day of the year?”

Touche!

Anyhoo, I got all the materials for my costume from the thrift store. I had to hit up both a Goodwill and Thrift City to find enough cat plushies to make it work. In total, the costume cost $20. I probably could have made it more cheaply if I’d waited for a sale, but I was too gung-ho!

I bought a robe, slippers, several cat plushies, and a set of old glasses. I sewed the cats onto the robe and Mr. Picky Pincher popped the lenses out of the glasses.

I’m very satisfied with how the robe turned out! For Halloween I’ll also put my hair up in rollers to complete the look. πŸ™‚ This also means I’ll have a clever costume to wear for several years, so it’s a win!

Also, I found this clever sign on someone’s Jeep at the thrift store. I absolutely had to share, since we’re on the topic of Crazy Cat Ladies. πŸ™‚

Freelancing

I landed a few freelancing projects this weekend, so the extra money was appreciated. I’m trying to bulk up my freelancing earnings so I can pay for my trip costs to the Fincon conference next month.

P.S. Thank you so much for those who voted for Picky Pinchers for a Plutus Award! You guys are amazing. πŸ™‚



Cooking

I mean, it wouldn’t be a weekend without a little cooking, eh? I didn’t do as much cooking as usual, since I was tied up in crafty projects, but I got a bit done. I love pre-cooking items for our weekday meals so I don’t have to do as much during busy weeks.

Sweet potato baked oatmeal

I’ve been desperately trying to use up the giant canisters of oatmeal in our pantry. It’s no easy feat when you kinda hate oatmeal, but at least it’s healthy, right? I stumbled upon this awesome Budget Bytes recipe for a sweet potato oatmeal with a crunchy pecan topping.

It was pretty easy and affordable to put together! Here’s the recipe I used. It’s not super-sweet and the star is definitely the pecan crumble on top. I put a few servings in the fridge for breakfast tomorrow. There were several extra servings, so I just froze those bad boys for later.

sweet potato baked oatmeal

Sausage patties

Since we want to have some breakfast sandwiches this week, I made patties from ground sausage. It’s a lot cheaper to buy a round of breakfast sausage, shape it, and cook it ourselves. Jimmy Dean ain’t got nothin’ on us! πŸ™‚

sausage patties

Caramelized onion and cream cheese pockets

I had the oven preheated to cook the oatmeal and I had a cast iron pan full of sausage fat. It seemed like the perfect chance to cook a snack! I caramelized onions in the sausage fat and deglazed the pan with a touch of red wine vinegar. I stirred the onions in cream cheese and added mayonnaise and salt.

I put the filling into the damned phyllo dough that I can’t seem to get rid of. Seriously, I’ve cooked at least four different meals from one pack of phyllo! Talk about getting your money’s worth.

Anyway, I wrapped the pockets spring roll-style and baked them at 375 degrees F for 20 minutes. I should have used more sheets of phyllo to make the pockets thicker; the filling started spilling out of them.

They don’t look perfectly gorgeous, but these onion pockets are mighty tasty! They’ll freeze and defrost really well for good snacking.

White beans

We’re eating a lot of beans this week! Instead of buying 60 ounces of pre-cooked cannellini beans, we bought dried beans and cooked them ourselves. The math works out in favor of cooking homemade beans the more beans you need.



Whey and onion update

Last week I tried two new projects and I just wanted to give a quick update on them!

First, we tried regrowing a red onion that mysteriously ended up in our front yard. Unfortunately the onion went sour and rotted, so it did not regrow as I hoped it would. Oh well!

I also tried to dry whey to make my own powdered whey protein powder. It took FOREVER to dry out the whey caramel mixture, and at that point, it turned to burnt ash. I don’t personally think it’s worth drying your own whey. I can see why whey protein powder costs so much now!

Fancy dinner

This weekend was supposed to be our much-needed trip to Port Aransas to frolic on the beach. Unfortunately, due to the damn hurricane, we had to cancel our trip. We were still wanting to do something fun and special just for the two of us, so we treated ourselves to a fancy dinner at our favorite Brazilian steakhouse.

Sure, it set us back $150, but DAMN. It was such a wonderful experience. I have no problem with paying for good service, excellent food, and a great experience. It was amazing to taste food cooked by people who are masters at what they do. I just about lapsed into a meat coma afterwards, but it was so much fun. πŸ™‚

Picky Pincher shirt

This is a fun update that I just wanted to share with y’all! I’m prepping to go to the super-dorky-but amazing Fincon blogger conference in October. I wanted to be able to show off the blog a bit, so I ordered a custom t-shirt to wear at the conference.

What’cha think? πŸ˜‰

The back mockup cut off a few of the cats on there, but you get the idea.

picky pincher tshirt picky pincher tshirt



Zap’s Adventures

Zap was being so sassy this weekend!

I had just washed our sheets and this little scamp wanted to roll in them. I guess everyone loves clean sheets, huh?

Zap LOVES playing in our unfinished tire chair. He skulked around inside the tire and tried to hide from me.

Zap’s also been so cuddly! Every day this week he joined me for my lunchtime nap. He made sure to fall asleep on my face after licking my eyelids. Little weirdo.

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