Hey Picky peeps! Sorry for reversing the posting schedule this week, but I wanted to make sure all of our frugal activity from the long weekend was documented for your viewing pleasure. 🙂 I have to say that I really, really needed the extra day off. It was fantastic to have an extra day to finish to-dos and try out a few new projects. And relax, of course!
Without further ado, here’s how we spent our long weekend! I just wish it could last forever. 🙂
So macaron that it feels maca-right
You asked and I delivered, peeps! I finally made a how-to video on making macarons. I gotta give big props to Gen Y Money for giving me the kick in the pants I needed to actually put together this video!
It’s a quick overview, but it’s a good starting point for anyone who wants to start making macarons at home. The recipe is in the YouTube video description!
For shiz and giggles, I made rose-flavored macarons for the tutorial. I dyed the cookies pink and made the rose-flavored buttercream icing royal purple. They’re macarons fit for a princess, so that’s why they’re called Rosy Princess macarons. 🙂
We were low on yogurt, so I whipped up another batch. Here’s a link to my easy peasy homemade yogurt recipe if you want to try yogurt-making yourself with zero special equipment. 🙂
Here’s a rare photo of how the yogurt looks before straining:
We noticed that a red onion was in our yard on Saturday morning. I have absolutely no idea how a random onion got into our yard, but there it was. Instead of eating an onion of unknown origins, we’re trying to sprout it! I’m not sure if it’ll take, or if it will even be plantable in our garden, but it’s a fun science experiment. 🙂
I made about $50 in freelance money over the long weekend. Not too shabby, eh? 🙂 I use UpWork for freelance writing, which funds a big portion of the blog. Ain’t nothin’ like a self-funding hobby, eh?
Phyllo pizza bites
On Sunday afternoon I had a conundrum.
We had a RIDICULOUS amount of phyllo dough in the fridge that needed to be used. I rifled around in the pantry and realized we had everything we needed to make some quick phyllo pizza bites. I combined leftover marinara sauce, chopped up leftover pepperoni, and mozzarella cheese to make the filling. I then folded the phyllo in half twice before stuffing them in cupcake pans. I baked the whole thing at 350 degrees F for about 20 minutes until they were crunchy and the filling was bubbly.
I let the pizza bites cool before freezing them in a Ziploc bag. I smell a new quick ‘n’ easy snack. 🙂
I did a little reorganizing in my craft room last month and discovered that I had an extra skein of yarn. I’ve always wanted to crochet a cute li’l hat for Zap, so I hung onto the yarn until I had the time. Over the long weekend I had the time to crochet the hat, so I did it!
It didn’t come out quite as tight as I wanted it to, but hey, it was good for an afternoon of fun. 🙂 Zap needed a little convincing to put the hat on for a photo. He was not a fan!
But he finally got the hint and let me take some damn pictures. It’s obvious that my crochet skills need improvement, but I still had a lot of fun. 🙂 I sense more cat hats may be in our future…
Show me the whey
Since I make yogurt so much, I’m always looking for new ways to use the by-product of straining the yogurt, whey. I caught wind of people boiling down whey and dehydrating it into a homemade whey protein powder. Whey protein powder goes for $27+ at the store, so making our own over time would be uh-mazing!
Anyhoo, I first boiled down the whey until it resembled caramel (not to be confused with our whey caramel experiment). This took about an hour of boiling before it reduced enough.
I then spread it on a sheet of parchment paper and stuck that suckah in the dehydrator. I’m currently letting it dehydrate for a few days. I’ll report back on whether it’s a powdery success!
If it does work out, I think I’ll start boiling down my whey each time I make yogurt and store it in the freezer for bulk dehydrating.
After straining my homemade wine two weeks ago, I wanted to taste it. The wine won’t officially be ready to drink until September 20, but I was curious about how the flavor would mellow out over time.
We gave it a taste and it wasn’t too shabby! The wine wasn’t sweet at all, which was my main worry. You could definitely taste the alcohol, but that’s to be expected in such a young wine. I’m hoping over the next 16 days the wine will mature and develop a bolder flavor. But I’m still happy with how it’s turning out!
I’m looking around for a glass carboy so I can regularly ferment wine at home without plastic buckets. Once I score a carboy, I’ll make my next batch of wine, which will be a plum wine. 🙂
I’ve been feeling particularly festive with the coming of September. I’m a total Autumn-loving white girl, so the faintest mention of “fall” has me reaching for a pumpkin spice anything.
Last year we weren’t able to celebrate many of the holidays I love because we were too exhausted from the house renovation. Well, this year, it’s gonna be different! I had the itch to craft on Sunday so I stopped by Dollar Tree. I got the materials to make one Halloween wreath and one Thanksgiving wreath.
What’cha think? 🙂
I still need to trim the ends off and then they’ll be good to go! All materials were purchased from Dollar Tree for a total of $20–$10 per wreath.
Mr. Picky Pincher did an impressive amount of yard work this weekend! As a result of grinding down our dead tree, we had a lot of “free” mulch to use up. Mr. Picky Pincher used the mulch to suppress weeds and improve water absorption around our fruit trees.
Awesome job, hubs!
Thrift Store Finds
I received an email from my fave thrift store that made me do a little happy dance! Green, blue, and purple tags at the store were 75% off. They do sales like this maybe once a quarter, so I knew it was my perfect chance to load up on nice ‘n’ cheap clothes.
I wasn’t sure I wanted to spend the money. But Mr. Picky Pincher insisted that I buy new pants without holes or bleach stains on them. Well, don’t twist my arm!
Anyhoo, let’s play a fun game! How much do you think I spent on my thrift store haul? 🙂
Gotta love low prices and sales. 🙂
Zap’s been particularly snuggly lately, which is just fine with me. This little guy has been curling up to nap with us all week. 🙂 Naturally he loves to come lay on me right as I need to pee.
Hark! It’s a rare shot of Zap the potato. 🙂
I’m going to this super-dorky-but-awesome conference called FinCon in October. It’s a mega-gathering of personal finance and frugality bloggers and I’m excited to go! They give out awards for the best blogs in the biz and I would be honored if you would consider voting for Picky Pinchers! I’ll probably ugly cry if I win, to be honest. Don’t you want to see me ugly cry? 🙂
I know the online ballot is gigantic, so if you’d like to vote, click on this link and search for “Frugality” on the page. Kindly enter this blog’s URL, submit, and you’ll be the best person ever! 🙂
We want to know: How did you spend or save money this weekend?