Other Ways to Save

Canning- What to do with all those tomatoes…

Megan from Bite Size Megan is here to share her canning adventures with us to help with other ways to save some money and figure out what to do with those gardens that will explode any day ;-).  Megan is a SAHM to 2 little  boys who enjoys her garden and couponing along with her sewing , and cooking projects !  Make sure you check her out at Bite Size Megan!

Last year I planted 14 tomato plants. So basically I had a lot way too many tomatoes.


A lot as in this is only a small part of what I had. So it was time to break out the canner and start canning some sauce!

First go ahead and cut out the stems of the tomatoes and questionable bits. You don’t have to, but I usually cut an X into the bottom to make the next step a little easier.
Get some water bowling, just enough to cover the tomatoes. Boil a few at a time for about 30-45 seconds. You’ll start to see the skin start to peel.
Throw those suckers into bowl of ice water. This will stop the cooking process and help the skins peel off easier. From here you just start getting all those skins off.
 This next step is really personal preference. You can leave the tomatoes whole, you can cube them up or you can do like I did and make a sauce. A very simple one at that.
Start by cutting the tomatoes into 4ths and removing much of the liquid. This will help reduce your cooking time. Set your heat to medium high and bring to a boil. After that set to simmer and cook until desired thickness. Mine was reduced about half.
Get that canner boiling! Ive got about 3 inches of water in there. While you’re waiting for that to boil, get a smaller pan and start boiling your lids.

 

Confusing picture time. Apparently I took pictures of tomato chunks I did the second time around instead of the sauce. But hey, you can get the idea. For pint jars add 1 tbs of lemon juice. For quarts go ahead and add 2 tbs. Why lemon juice? Tomatoes are a very low acidic food and if the acidity is not brought up by the highly acidic lemon juice, it can lead to botulism. And that’s not fun.
If your doing whole tomatoes or chunks pack the tomatoes in. You can fill the empty space with hot water or hot tomato juice. I used tomato juice as it just kind of looks better. But either is fine. Fill to about 1/2 inch head space from the top of the jar. Wipe the tops of the jars to remove any moisture and place on your lids and bands. Tighten the bands but be sure not not overly tighten them.
Now for the canner! The first time I used this thing I was totally paranoid I was going to blow up my house with it. I think I read the instructions over again about 20 times to make sure I was doing it correctly. But don’t really, they’re not really that scary. Yours may work differently so do refer to your manual.
Place the lid on and after about 10 minutes your going to see steam coming out the top. This means the canner is filling up with steam. Once you see the steam coming out place the weight on. In a few minutes the weight should start to wiggle. Picture me staring intently at the canner. Once its starts wiggling set your timer to 10 minutes.
10 minutes is up! Turn off the heat and let the canner cool down on its own. Apparently if you tried to open it now this is where it might blow up your house. (I kid, but seriously let it cool down on its own and don’t try to open it.) Once it’s cooled remove the jars and let them sit over night to cool down. When you touch the top of the jars they shouldn’t “pop”. If they do it means they didn’t seal correctly. If that happens just put it in your fridge to use later (or freeze it!).

 

Guest Post, Other Ways to Save, Smart Phone Apps

Snap Appy Old Navy App

Kat and Laura are sisters who coupon and share their couponing stories, tips, and deals at: http://www.ourcouponadventures.com

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So have you heard of the new Old navy app for Smart Phones?

Its called Snap Appy and I literally downloaded it a few days ago, and used it for the first time today.

Basically all you have to do is “snap” a pic of an Old Navy logo , I snapped a photo of the Old Navy tag when I was in the store and submit it, within a few seconds a wheel comes up and it turns and you can win all sorts of things. So far today I have won 10% off your entire purchase, $15.00 off when you spend $75.00 and $5.00 off when you spend $25.00.

The one I used today was a $5.00 off coupon. I got lucky and found a pair of skinny jeans on clearance for $4.49, essentially making my purchase for free!

Can’t beat that deal!

Information from their website:

What is Snap Appy?It’s the Old Navy app where snapping a logo gets you a valuable surprise. There are more surprises all the time, so you never know what you’ll get.Why isn’t Snap Appy Working?There was an issue with the app but good news, it’s been fixed. If you are still experiencing issues delete the app and reinstall for the fix to kick in. Once installed you may notice your saved surprises are missing. To replace anything you may have lost we just loaded a bunch of great new surprises into the app. Thanks for all your patience.What else does it do?Snap a special icon in Old Navy stores to see how other Snap Appy fans are sporting the featured look. Or if you’re not in a store, you can shop Old Navy online right through the app.Where can I get it?Snap Appy is available FREE for iPhone in the App Store and in the Android Marketplace right now. Time to get snapping!
DIY, Other Ways to Save

Simple Foaming Hand Soap

foaming hand soap

So David has discovered the fun in hand washing and loves to play in the foam soap… Well we are going through more and more of it and with that I did a little research and found a way to make my own with all of that Dawn that I have…

What you need:

  • Liquid hand soap
  • Water
  • Empty foaming soap dispenser

Directions:

  1. Pour one tablespoon of liquid hand soap into an empty foaming soap dispenser.
  2. Fill the rest of the dispenser with water (leaving a little space at the top of the container).
  3. Screw on the lid and shake.
David, Other Ways to Save

Home Hair Cuts

cork money saving tips

So there are many other ways that you can save some more money…. One way that we do is cutting David’s hair at home.  It also is so much easier than taking him somewhere where we both end up covered in the hair because the only way I can get it done, is to have me sit there and hold him hoping that they get it, because he moves non stop…

Hair cuts for David run $15-$20 every 3 to 4 weeks this means that I save at least $180 per year by daddy or I doing this!

You yourself can get a set real cheap on Amazon! 

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What are some other things that you do to save money?

Other Ways to Save

Fabric Softener Deals…

 

I am always up for a challenge to find y’all deals…. So here it goes!

Dollar General has Downy and Bounce for $4.50, they often have ALL dryer sheets for really cheap, possibly as low as $1.00 each

Walgreen’s  has Downy, and Bounce for 25% off

And if this is still to rich for your blood, check out this recipe on Mommy’s Kitchen to make your own from things found right in your stock pile!

Ingredients:

6 – cups Hot Water
3 – cups White Distilled Vinegar
2 – cups Hair Conditioner (any brand)
1 – Empty Gallon Container

 

Other Ways to Save

Make your own laundry detergent….

cork money saving tips

Here is the soap recipe that I have used when laundry soap deals just plain suck!

  • 1 bar (or 4.5 ounces) of shaved bar soap (Ivory, ZOTE, Fels-Naptha, or Lava)
  • 1 cup of borax
  • 1 cup of washing soda

I would grate the soap on the cheese grater and run it all through the blender to mix well,  watch that the borax doesn’t cake at the bottom of the blender.  I added one formula scoop to each load!

Feel free to add a couple of drops of your favorite essential oil to get a desired scent!