Week Four: Paying for Christmas by Reselling!

This week I had a number of sales but nothing too huge. It seems people like to shop on the weekends the most so I need to get things listed for this weekend! This week, I was happy to get rid of those Skylanders because I knew I wasn’t going to make much money off of them (6+ months ago they were selling for about $25 each, but I waited too long). I also wanted to get rid of the Holt Piggy Bank because I spent a lot on it, mainly because I knew it was something special and I couldn’t let it sit at Goodwill (#collectorproblems). It was also in perfect condition! And then you’ll see some new things in the sold category, Littlest Pet Shops! Hopefully you have a bin of these in your basement collecting dust, because they can be a great money maker! I’m no expert at them by any means, but I’m trying to catch on fairly quickly. I picked up a lot of LPS (Littlest Pet Shops for short) off a yard sale Facebook page for $30. It was a cardboard box full of animals and the buildings. I’ve been going through the animals, picking out the ones worth money and working on making a profit off the lot! I’ve already made back my money selling just 2 of the pets and I have an $80 dog listed! It’ll take me a bit to finish sorting through and then everything that isn’t worth much, I’ll probably toss back on a yard sale page (or eBay, who knows!) for $20-$30, especially the houses and buildings that are missing doors and accessories.

I also toy around on Etsy, but it’s definitely not my #1 spot. I included my Etsy profits from the week though!

You’ll notice if you add up my sold prices and look at what I actually made, it is a pretty crazy difference. Item costs, shipping and fees take a large cut of the profits. If you’re looking into selling on eBay, keep in mind they charge about 10% of the selling price AND shipping. In addition, Paypal takes a cut of $0.30 + 3% (approximately). It doesn’t sound like a lot, but these fees really add up. I owe eBay a good chunk of change each month and Paypal sucks it right out of your earnings when it’s deposited. I can’t complain though as eBay has proven to be a great way for me to make some extra cash this holiday season. As usual, I still have plenty of items to list so I need to get moving! It is so, so busy around here!  Don’t forget to keep up with us on the Facebook group if you’re into online deals and frugal chatting!

This past week I sold:

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Two Skylanders Trap Team
Bought for: $13 (I planned to sell when they were selling for more money, but I didn’t get them listed when I should have)
Sold for: $27.50 shippeds-l1600 (10)

Littlest Pet Shop Collie
Bought for: $2 (I bought a whole box of pets and houses for $30, so really, it was less than $2 but this will just keep things simple)
Sold for: $32 shipped

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Little Pet Shop Corgi
Bought for: $2 (See above)
Sold for: $12.99 shipped

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Holt Corky Pig Piggy Bank
Bought for: $15
Sold for: $44.67 + shipping

Etsy Profits: $20.35

That makes this week’s net profit (this is after Paypal fees, eBay fees, and all other expenses): $79.25
Week Two’s profit: $137.41
Week One’s profit: $105
Week Three’s profit: $82.89

Total profit: $404.55

If you haven’t read the previous posts in the series, please click the link below!
Week One
Week Two
Week Three

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Week Three: Paying for Christmas by Reselling!

I skipped a week two weeks ago because I was on vacation and surprisingly (and lucky for me because I didn’t close any listed items on eBay) nothing sold! As much as I would have loved the sales, not having to worry about someone shipping my items while I was gone was great! Nerdboy and I are finally engaged. We enjoyed a beautiful and romantic vacation Jamaica. It was so nice to get away! When we came back, we said goodbye to our family pet, our 14 year old Golden Retriever, Jake. When Wednesday came along, we started Thanksgiving festivities. We traveled to visit family on Thursday and Friday and returned back home this past weekend to start Christmas preparations! I hadn’t listed anything for sale in a good two weeks. Obviously I have been quite busy, but it’s a bummer because you can’t really sell anything if you don’t take the time to list it. I’m doing much better this coming week and already listed a few new things, so week 4 sales are already starting!

Thanks to Thanksgiving sales, Black Friday and Cyber Monday, I’ve bought a quite a few Christmas presents! I think I’m almost done shopping for people. Honestly, I have no idea how much I’ve spent though but I will tally it up and compare it to my earnings to see how well I’m doing. I still have plenty of items to sell, but time is ticking and I need to get listing and selling!  I’ve also picked up some great deals on Amazon, so keep up with the Facebook group if you’re into Amazon deals!

I sold on eBay only and at this point, I hadn’t listed anything new in two weeks so the CHA-CHINGs were surprising! I sold an item on Thanksgiving, Black Friday and then that Saturday. I guess people were in the shopping mood 🙂

This past week I sold:


Pyrex Refrigerator Set
Bought for: $13
Sold for: $80 shipped


Beauty and the Beast “Chip” Bank
Bought for: $2
Sold for: $20 + shipping


Melissa & Doug Trunki
Bought for: $4
Sold for: $34.99 + shipping

That makes this week’s net profit (this is after Paypal fees, eBay fees, and all other expenses): $82.89
Week Two’s profit: $137.41
Week One’s profit: $105
Total profit: $325.30

If you haven’t read the previous posts in the series, please click the link below!
Week One
Week Two

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Week Two: Paying for Christmas by Reselling!

I had another week of some great sales that I’ll be sharing with you guys! So far, I’ve bought a few Christmas presents but I’m still in the positive and haven’t gone over what I’ve earned from reselling yet. Luckily, I don’t have many people to buy for and I’ve been really frugal with the spending. 😉 I’ve actually picked up quite a few amazing presents for way less than retail at thrift stores, which I realize sounds pretty awful, but I promise it’s pretty cool. I would have never thought to buy gifts for people at a thrift store, but when you find Lego sets New in Box and American Girl dolls for dollars… how can you not?! I’m either buying them as gifts or buying them to resell, and some of my recipients would be very grateful for these items that I would otherwise not be able to afford (or choose not to pay) retail for. I’ve also picked up some great deals on Amazon, so keep up with the Facebook group if you’re into Amazon deals!

This week I sold on eBay, Amazon, Facebook and a textbook site. I don’t know how some of these people have hundreds and thousands of listings on eBay. I find it so time time consuming to take pictures and write up the listings, but maybe I’m just super slow. Of course, when my phone goes $$CHA-CHINGS$$ it’s totally worth it, but it is tedious, so warning to anyone wanting to get started.

This past week I sold:


Beauty and the Beast Mrs. Potts and Chip Tea Set
Bought for: $6
Sold for: $69.99 + shipping


Three textbooks
Bought for: $0
Sold for: $57


Pyrex Pink Gooseberry Bowl
Bought for: $1
Sold for: $14 + shipping


Pyrex Butterprint Bowl
Bought for: $1
Sold for: $14 + shipping

That makes this week’s net profit (this is after Paypal fees, eBay fees, and all other expenses): $137.41
Week One’s profit: $105
Total profit: $242.41

If you haven’t read the previous posts in the series, please click the link below!
Week One

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Week One: Paying for Christmas by Reselling!

Hey everyone!

This blog has been neglected for too long so I’m going to be posting to it again! It won’t be as frequent as it used to be (How did I post 20 times in one day? Did I really have that much free time and flexibility while being a full-time student? Apparently so!). I’ll be changing the name sometime soon as I graduated college TWO.YEARS.AGO. Nowadays, I hope to just post general (boring) things on the blog and all the deals with deadlines that you need to be quick on your feet with (think Amazon deals and other hot online deals) will be posted on my Facebook group. You have to request to join the group as it is closed, so all your family and friends don’t see everything you post, like, and comment on. It gives you the privacy, especially around Christmas time when you don’t need everyone seeing what you’re buying! Just request to join and I will add you!

As for this post, I wanted to share with you my goal for the rest of 2015. I vowed to only use money that I have earned through reselling (pretty much my favorite hobby, next to thrifting, but luckily they go hand in hand) to purchase gifts for this holiday season. I’m going to post the details of what I buy and sell on the blog to hold myself accountable. Why would I disclose what I’m buying and selling to other people, therefore increasing the competition and making it harder for me? Well, not many people are going to read this (that’s what a 2 year bloggin break does to your stats) and reselling is very difficult job. It involves countless trips to thrift stores, flea markets, estates sales and yard sales. It involves countless hours of research to make sure what you’re buying is actually worth money in its current condition. It involves countless hours of photographing and listing the items for sale. And lastly, there are many grueling hours of packaging and shipping when the item sells. I have been doing this on and off for years. It’s a lot of work, but luckily I love most of it. If you are willing to put in that kind of time, you are welcome to see the items I sell and hopefully it helps you and your family out too. I use many different selling platforms, including eBay, Etsy, Instagram, Facebook and Craigslist.

I will use these earnings to purchase presents for people for Christmas. One note is that if a great deal pops up on an item I’ve been looking for, I will purchase it even if I haven’t earned enough money with hopes that more items will sell and I’ll recover the negative. Saving money is just as important as making money so I won’t pass up a great deal, but I will make sure to have it paid for by Christmas.

Last week I sold:


20 Piece Corelle Spring Blossom Set NIB
Bought for: $20
Sold for: $69.99 + shipping


Lot of 225 Box Tops for Education (Yes, they sell well, and yes, I know they should be donated to schools. We donated thousands of them to our schools in the past, now I can choose what to do with them. They are still going to someone’s schools and not being trashed.)
Bought for: Free (just time collecting, cutting, counting)
Sold for: $24.99 Shipped


Pyrex Friendship Refrigerator Set
Bought for: Approximately $25
Sold for: $70 + shipping


Net profit of about $105 after expenses and fees.

Will update next week! I guess I better get to listing!

Gardening Update 5/28/2013

Here's the before picture! We made 3 new raised beds in the garden and loaded them up with new dirt (I bought 2 yards of Leaf-Gro and mixed that with stuff from the chicken coop and vermiculite.)

Here’s the before picture! We made 3 new raised beds in the garden and loaded them up with new dirt (I bought 2 cubic yards of Leaf-Gro and mixed that with stuff from the chicken coop and vermiculite.)


Got the cinder blocks for free!

Got the cinder blocks for free!

Cloth put down to help block weeds

Cloth put down to help block weeds

Making the beds!

Making the beds!

New raised bed built by my neighbor. Contains: garlic, onion, cabbage, cauliflower, and lettuce

New raised bed built by my neighbor between our houses. This one contains: garlic, onion, cabbage, cauliflower, and lettuce

Black raspberries taking over my garden

Black raspberries taking over my garden

Huge oregano bush

Huge oregano bush

The start of my tomato and pepper area.

The start of my tomato and pepper area. It’s much more developed now!

Baby romaine lettuce

Baby romaine lettuce

The chickens found their way into the garden!

The chickens found their way into the garden!

Spinach, lettuce, young garlic (I had to dig it up because it was in the way), and eggs!

Spinach, lettuce, young garlic (I had to dig it up because it was in the way), and eggs!

Here are some updated pictures from my 2014 garden! I added a few new raised beds and bought some dirt so we’re off to a good start! The bugs have already started to eat my green beans, but everything else looks good!

So far I have planted:

  • Blackberries
  • Raspberries
  • Apple Tree
  • Peach Tree
  • Strawberries (all of mine from previous years died so I started new for 2014)
  • Blueberries (Aren’t doing well!)
  • Gourds
  • Zucchini
  • Yellow Squash
  • Brussel Sprouts (new for 2014!)
  • Cabbage (new for 2014!)
  • Cauliflower
  • Garlic
  • Onion
  • Radish
  • Lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Carrots (which as usual don’t seem to be doing anything)
  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers
  • Peas
  • Green Beans
  • Potatoes
  • Herbs

So that’s where all my time at home has been going over the last few weeks! I’ll be posting updates throughout the season, so tune back in.

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Savvy Shopper’s Updates (Couponing, Gardening, Chickens & More!)

This is been the longest blogging break I have taken since I started blogging in 2010 (has it really been that long?). Things have been absolutely crazy here. I graduated in December, went on many vacations, and then started working. I work 50-60 hour weeks and when you tack on my commutes and sleeping, I have virtually no free time ever. I set aside Tuesday nights at 10 PM to catch the new Teen Mom (why is that show so addicting?). Multiple days go by each week where I don’t even open my laptop, which is absolutely crazy coming from the girl who used to be on it non-stop. I’m no complaining though, as I am so thankful to have a job, but it’s tiring. Most of the time, I don’t even have time to shave my legs, let alone blog! I really hope to be able to add at least a few new posts each week so I can stay connected to the great readers I had. I want to keep everyone updated on my shopping trips, my garden, the chickens, and my thrifting. I might even be able to throw in some good deals here and there. I highly, highly recommend you join the Savvy Shopper’s Group on Facebook. It is much easier for me to share on there, you can ask questions at any time. We share Swagbucks codes, our shopping trips, and anything else.

As you can see, the blog really needs a new lift. As of December, I am no longer a student so some things need to be updated. Nerdboy, the boyfriend and techie behind the blog, will work on it once he finds some free time. He’s still in school and working and he seems to have less free time than I do.



I’ve been couponing every week! As long as I stay on a routine I can get things done. CVS has been really sucky since Black Friday, do you agree? We used to walk out of there with free Gilette razors and money makers all the time. Now we’re lucky if we see one measily freebie each week. Maybe I’m being greedy, but the deals have been so slow. My mom has been doing ShopRite each week (Glen Burnie, MD ShopRite is still doubling $1 coupons) and we usually go to Safeway for a small trip when we can. My goal is to start posting my shopping trips, at the very least. I also need to update everyone on thrifting, chickens and the garden!


I got these shoes at Value Village for $13. They are practically new. I’ve been looking for a pair of shoes just like this for years and finally found a pair that my cheap butt would buy 😉


Some stuff Nerdboy picked up for me!


This was a GREAT thrifting day in February.

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Probably about a third of my collection of Vintage Pyrex

I still continue to thrift every week. Now that I’m not going to school, I’m far from my favorite thrift shops that I used to frequent. Nerdboy so graciously goes for me every once in awhile. I go to flea markets when possible (snow and cold make this difficult). I pick up Pyrex as much as I can. I collect vintage Pyrex for my personal collection, which has grown SO MUCH over the years and I also pick up stuff to resell. I have a pretty good eye for things I can flip and make a buck off of, whether it be Pyrex that I don’t personally collect, other vintage kitchen items, or even kid’s toys. I use money that I make from my personal sales (whether it be reselling items I thrift or make/craft) to pay for all of my expenses. I use Paypal for selling, so all my profit lies in my Paypal account. I use a Paypal Debit card (highly reccomend) for all my purchases so it’s a great cushion to have. I haven’t had to touch the money out of my actual bank account for months, probably a year, with the exception of student loans that I pay off in large chunks from my paychecks. If you’re into the Instagram thing and don’t mind pictures of my thrift finds (mainly Pyrex), chickens, and me selling stuff (yes, mainly Pyrex or old stuff), follow me @brandilabarre. I even post my shopping trips sometimes!


Tilling my garden

The chickens are doing well. If you remember from the Fall, Luna (our littlest Barred Rock) wasn’t doing well. She was so sick that she lived in my bedroom for a month or so. We nursed her back to health and she has been living outside since December. She’s still a bit slow and will not hang out with the other girls. Luckily they don’t really pick on her anymore, but they certainly aren’t friends. When they sleep at night, Bonnie, Biscuit, and Ginger all snuggle together and Luna is by herself at least 2 feet away. Poor girl, but she’s hanging in there. Only two chickens are laying eggs. I think the cold weather and shorter days convinced Ginger and Luna to stop laying this winter. Bonnie and Biscuit lay an egg almost every single day. They rock! I hope the other girls step it up since it’s March already! Now that the snow is melted, they get to play outside as much as possible. They till my garden all up and that makes me so happy (until I have plants in there)! We’re still talking about bringing some new babies into the coop in coming months.

As far as gardening goes, it has officially started for 2014! I got seeds planted already and my lemon and lime trees are here in Maryland. I planted lettuce, spinach and green onion seeds in pots. It’s still a bit nippy here, but I’m hoping they’ll grow. The left half of my garden is looking really good. Last year it was filled with a good bit of yummy compost, I just recently added some horse manure that I got for free off Craigslist months ago from a lady 3 minutes away (thank you, ma’am!), and I’ve been constantly tossing in the mess from the chicken coop. The right side of the garden still needs a lot of work. I’m thinking of adding 3 raised beds and filling with good dirt and more manure because I’ve struggled with that sandy soil for just too long. I’ll update with more pictures when I can.

So, if you got through all that, I just want to say thank you for sticking with me. I thought I was busy when I was in school, but working is just so much more time consuming. I headed out for another vacation next week, but I’ll hopefully stay in touch from now on 🙂

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Savvy Student Shopper – Updates: Vermont to Florida, Publix, CVS, and Citrus Tress!


The Savvy Student Shopper survived skiing and negative temperatures in Vermont last week and is now spending time in Florida!


Yesterday was pretty rainy so we went shopping! I went to CVS (twice this week) and to Publix! Publix is similar to an amusement park for any seasoned couponer. No matter the week, there’s always a super deal (or 15) there! Their BOGO sales allow you to use 2 coupons per pair, there are many, many Publix store coupons for extra savings, plus most of their stores accept competitor coupons, and some even double Manufacturer’s coupons. You just can’t go wrong shopping at Publix. I wish they were in Maryland! I spent about $14 on everything pictured above.

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Before leaving for Florida, I went to CVS to grab some deals. I think I paid just about tax for the items above. Christmas clearance was 90% (inlcuding candy) so I grabbed the Hershey’s Kisses for $0.39 — score! I got $10 back from the Bayer Contour, $4 from Sundown, $5 from PediaCare, and $3 from Colgate.

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And then when I got to Florida, I grabbed 6 packs of Tena ($9 money maker!!) and my mom wanted those Green Tea diet pills. They were $19.29 each originally, but I think we got them all for like $12 after coupons, ECBs, and overage from the Tena. I have absolutely no faith in those pills (or that entire section of ‘As Seen on TV’, ‘Dr. Oz sponsored’, or ‘Jillian Micheal’s’ products for that matter) but she has been wanting to buy them. The instruction booklet that comes in the box gives you a 2 week diet and exercise plan to follow. Mom said the reviews on their website were great (well, obviously) but she’s also not understanding that the pills aren’t magic and the results are only shown in the people who follow their diet and exercise routine for an extended period of time. She has zero intentions of following their suggested plan. Oh well. At least she didn’t pay full price for them, right?

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This morning also started off kind of rainy so instead of heading to the pool, we spent the afternoon at the huge flea market nearby. It’s mostly indoors and it’s mostly filled with junk. I’m a flea market junkie and this is not my kind of flea market. It’s filled with new stuff, cheap plastic toys, refurbished laptops, fake jewelry, As Seen on TV items, leopard print leggings, foot massagers, body vibrators, Bath Fitter’s salesmen, and items from a drug store that closed 11 years ago. But, there’s a great aisle that’s filled of produce and at least half of it is local. We like to get oranges, strawberries, peppers, tomatoes and herbs. I also found a nice man that was selling plants. I purchased a Meyer Lemon and Lime tree (technically it’s a centennial kumquat tree, but he said they just taste like limes) from him for $12 each. I’ve been eyeing up a Meyer Lemon tree that I was going to buy online but that would have run around $100 shipped, so I figured I’d buy it here and save the money. I fly back to Maryland next week, but my grandparents will drive my trees home when they come back to Maryland in April. The trees will enjoy their Florida weather more than Maryland weather anyway. Both varieties are pretty cold tolerant so I’m hoping they’ll survive back home, but I’ll bring them inside for the winter next year. Both trees already have baby fruit on them. I’m pretty excited to add some new fruit to my back yard! I have 2 varieties of apples, a cherry tree, mulberry tree, blueberry bush, strawberries, blackberry and black raspberry vines, and now citrus!

And that’s all for tonight! Time to get some sleep because there’s another (better) flea market I’d like to hit in the morning before we spend the day poolside.

Chicken Update 12/3

Hello my friends! I realize I’ve totally been MIA for the past few months. It’s hard to keep up with everything! With a lot of changes going on, I figured it was time for another chicken update.

We’ll start with Luna. Luna-belle. Luna-cake. Luna-wuna. Luna-baby. Chickens get all sorts of nicknames when you share a room with them for almost a month! It has been a rough road for poor little Luna. If you remember from way back in March, Luna was our littlest girl and I’m almost positive she always will be. (Oh my goodness I miss the chicky days.)



Luna was our last to start laying eggs and always the runt of the group. Starting around September, Luna started slowing down, not keeping up with the others when I let them run, and stopped laying eggs. We thought she was possibly egg bound since she wasn’t laying any eggs. Then we noticed Bonnie (her Barred Rock sister) was picking on her quite a bit. She was pecking at her constantly and wouldn’t let her get near the food. Soon, the other girls, Ginger and Biscuit, started picking on her too. And then, Luna started limping. I figured she was limping because the girls were pecking at her so much or maybe she had something caught in it. We saw nothing physically wrong with her foot on the outside, so we assumed it was something internal. The only time Luna got some peace was when we let them out to run. The 3 bad girls would go explore and Luna would lay in the grass. When we noticed that Luna was obviously not getting much food and her foot was not getting any better, we brought her inside.


Luna started eating like crazy! She was so excited to have her own food bowl and not be pushed around by the others. She also loved her own personal roosting stick. She was eating well at first but her appetite started slowly decreasing and her foot was not getting better. We removed the roost from the cage hoping she’d spend more time resting without having to put weight on her sore foot. In an effort to perk her up and help her foot, we gave her 2 warm baths with some Epsom salt. We couldn’t figure out what was wrong with her foot, but noticed some spots on her foot and wondered if she had a bacterial infection. After the baths, Luna was more relaxed and seemed to like the extra attention. We added an oral antibiotic to her water. At the same time, Luna had stopped eating and drinking. I could rub the most tasty food ever all over her beak and she wouldn’t even open her beak for a lick. We thought maybe there was a blockage in her system and she couldn’t physically eat. Due to lack of food and water, Luna slowed down tremendously. She would sleep all the time and she could not keep her eyes open! We quickly realized that she needed nutrients asap. We decided to use the syringe and give her Pedialyte multiple times a day. Thankfully, this happened during the week of Thanksgiving and I was able to be home most of the time. She still would not eat. Michael ordered another antibiotic and needles, which was our last hope for poor Luna. Thankfully, Michael gave her the first shot into her breast, because I was a chicken (ironic 😉 ) and after 8 shots within 5 days (and I did half of them myself!), Luna seems to have made a near-full recovery! The shots ended up being very difficult as Luna has practically no fat or muscle for a needle. She’s literally skin, feathers, and bones, but we managed and carefully found a safe location 8 times. For the past 3-4 days, she has been eating like a pig! She’s constantly munching on her dry food and we gave her some fruit and veggies too. She started drinking on her own too, so no more Pedialyte through a syringe! I still haven’t a clue what was/is wrong with her and we’ll probably never know. She is being extremely vocal and I know she wants to go back outside! My next dilemma is when she does go back outside (we’re still trying to fatten her up before she goes into the freezing temperatures as she is less than half the size of the other chickens) she’ll still continued to be picked on. During this whole roller coaster, Luna got to go outside a few times to get fresh air and grass. Every single time, the mean girls came right over to peck at her (even through the garden fence!). I’m worried they are going to bully her right back to sickness so I’m keeping Luna inside (and on chick food for extra fat and protein) to bulk her up and get her extra feisty. I know she’ll always be at the bottom of the pecking order, but she can’t be bullied to death!




Also, Squirt, our bad cat, absolutely loves my new roommate. She steals shares food through the bars and even gives her loving pats slaps in the face through the cage. Best friends furever, I’d say.



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And the other girls… They are doing great. They are as loud and obnoxious as ever. I read somewhere that Barred Rocks were supposed to be quiet chickens. Apparently they never met our Bonnie. They have some kind of 6th sense and can tell when someone opens the front/back door of our house. They start clucking/screaming to be let out even when no one is in sight! They still absolutely love to roam the yard. Biscuit has eaten numerous frogs and lizards WHOLE. She’s still our hunter. Bonnie, she’s still the boss and flips out when the other girls leave her behind. Ginger is my sweetie, well next to Luna. Luna gets priority since she lives with me. Unfortunately, now that our days are shorter, the girls get much less time outside. By the time I get home from school or work, it’s dark already. They also lay less eggs because of the short days and cold weather. In the summer, they were laying about 6 days of the week. They just skip a day here and there. Now, they skip many more days and the egg count is very scattered. Sometimes we only get 1 eggs, sometimes 2, and sometimes 3. I can’t wait until this Spring when they’ll start laying more and hopefully Luna will join in soon! Oh, and I might be bringing new babies into the coop too 😉

So there you go! Another look into my crazy life.

And before I get the comments, let me just put out a disclosure that Michael and I are not chicken doctors, I do not recommend you keep a chicken in your room and do everything we did, I know that there are some veterinarians that’ll take chickens, I know that it’s *just* a chicken and could be dinner (seriously don’t eat a sick chicken though), but we are just doing the best that we could do to help this poor, little, young chicken that really just needed help. If you have any questions about a sick chicken, I recommend you find a reputable source for your information. If you’re considering getting chickens, remember that they do get sick and hurt and you must make the right decisions for yourself as a responsible pet owner.


Thanksgiving 101: Making Stock From Your Turkey

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My favorite part of the Thanksgiving turkey is the carcass! Making turkey stock is so easy, delicious, and nutritious! Do not ever throw out your carcass again! Even if you aren’t hosing Thanksgiving dinner, you can ask the host what they are doing with the carcass. Don’t let them go in the trash! You also don’t have to wait until Thanksgiving to make stock, this can be done with any bones, so anytime you have a baked chicken or beef bones, don’t throw them out! If you don’t have time to make stock right now, just toss the carcass and all the drippings into the freezer.

In a large pot:

  • Carcass
  • Drippings, fat, veggies cooked with the turkey, etc.
  • Carrots (ends and peels work!)
  • Onions (ends and peels work!)
  • Celery (ends and leaves are great)
  • Herbs (I use thyme, parsley and bay leaves)
  • Other veggies of your choice
  • Salt and pepper
  • A tablespoon or 2 of Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Water to cover

As you cook during the week, save your veggie peels and ends for stock making. You can get a gallon size freezer bag and stick the veggies ends in until you’re ready to make stock. The apple cider vinegar helps draw out extra vitamins and minerals out of the bones. Bone broth is so good for you!

Let this cook for at least a few hours or you can even have it cook for a day or two. You can make it in a large crock pot or a large pot. Add more water if necessary. Be sure to keep taste testing to see if it needs anything. If it tastes too watery, let it cook down more. Keep in mind that bone broth will taste different than broth you make from a bouillon cube. Strain your stock. A tiny holed colander or some cheese cloth will do the trick. If you notice your stock is very oily/fatty, let the stock cool completely (put it in the fridge or outside if it’s cold enough). Skim off the fatty film and then bring the stock back to a boil.

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What to do with stock?

  • Make soup
  • Freeze the stock (ice cube trays work well for saving small amounts for cooking rice or flavoring other recipes)
  • Can the stock (I highly recommend the Presto 23 Quart Pressure canner)
  • Save the extra meat pieces for meals



Happy Thanksgiving + Black Friday Amazon Deals!

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I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! I love food, especially Thanksgiving food. Unlike many people, I go for the veggies! My plate is piled with string beans, corn, sauerkraut, and mashed potatoes (kind of a veggie… right?). I’ll eat one slice of meat and I won’t touch the rolls or pies! To me, there’s nothing better than a can (or 4) of Del Monte string beans simmered with onions and bacon grease. I’d take that over cake/pie/cookies any day! I can’t wait for leftovers for breakfast tomorrow 🙂

Some of you are probably out Black Friday shopping now or you’ll be up early tomorrow for the sales! Don’t forget that Amazon has fantastic deals this time of year. The best deals will sell out in seconds, so you really need to be on top of these things! I’ll try to post some of the hot deals, so make sure you’re following along.

You can head over now and view the 2013 Black Friday deals from Amazon. Don’t forget, Cyber Monday is right around the corner! Amazon posts Deals of the Day and Lightening Deals all the time. You’ll want to keep them out!