Happenings on the Vine

Life has a way of just flying by. The last time I was on here, I had a miscarriage of our beautiful baby. I miss that child with a fierceness! There were many health issues as a result of the loss that had to be dealt with. I am so thankful for my health physicians. I was on the road to recovering and a few months later, we were blessed with the news that we were expecting again. This newest fruit has been a blessing and a joy! Our family has been growing by leaps and bounds. We have eldest fruit, the 2 littles in the middle, and baby fruit.

We didn’t put in a garden this year, much to my dismay. The groundhogs came back in the spring and it just wasn’t worth it to see all of our hard work eaten again. We enjoyed visiting u-picks this spring. I took the product of our labors and made a lot of jam….and I mean a lot of jam! Pretty soon it will be apple picking time and I will be able to put those up as well.

Eldest fruit has completed the 3rd grade. I am so proud of her and all of her accomplishments! The eldest male fruit (aka one of the littles in the middle) will be joining us this fall for kindergarten. I am looking forward to this year’s school, it looks to be a fun one! We have switched to Tapestry of Grace and I am excited to see how it fits our family. On the homeschool front I have decided to help start up a new homeschool community. I am in charge of communications via facebook, pinterest, and instagram. God has great things in store for this community! We have been blessed by the number of families that He has drawn to us.

On the debt front, we have hit our $6000 medical deductible this year. It is almost completely paid off! The insurance is now kicking in and paying 80% of our medical bills (yeah, kinda stinky). August and September are our busy months, debt reduction has been put off in favor of school supplies, school books, and fall clothes. We have decided to take a vacation this year and trying to keep it as frugal as possible. In order to come up with the money that we need, I have drastically reduced our grocery budget. I haven’t been able to stick to it 100% I went over by $4 the first week and $10 this week, mainly due to poor planning on my part. So what put us over? I decided to take the children out on an excursion, but I didn’t have any snacks ($4) and baby fruit has gone through a growth spurt, putting a run on baby food ($10). Thank goodness for Big Lots! I was able to go there and stock up on organic baby food ($.30-$.50 each). The only caution I have about buying food from there is to make sure to check the expiration date and plan accordingly. So by now you may be wondering what our grocery budget is.

$50

Yes that is right, I am attempting to feed my family of 6 on a budget of $50 a week. It has been more like $60 though. I am going to try to plan better so that I can get my bill consistently down to $50. No I won’t be able to afford everything organic, but I will do my best and I will feed my family real foods.

So that is what has been going on around the vine. What have you been up to?

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4 thoughts on “Happenings on the Vine

  1. What lovely words. Would you please share how you spend so little every week on groceries? I know we discussed this briefly before. Is Aldi’s the secret? We almost went as a family today but went to Walmart instead. I can’t seem to get away from spending $200/week between groceries and other needs {soaps/shampoos/} and we’re a family of five with one exclusively breastfeed. Appreciate any tips!! God bless p.s. It’s majorily on my heart to homeschool but I feel overwhelmed. We missed the cut off for Kindergarten this year so I have another year to think. God bless!

    • Thanks! Right now we are in the process of using up all of our pantry and freezer foods, so that helps a lot. Once we deplete that it will get harder. I am hoping to share a post next week of what we are doing (i.e. what we bought this past week and what we ate.) I actually no longer shop at Aldi’s because I was having issues with quality, especially when it comes to produce. I actually do something called reverse meal planning (it’s what works for me). I will try to tackle that concept in another post later this week. I do most of my shopping at a store called Fresh Thyme, but I shop only their sale items. Some weeks aren’t as good as others, so I might go to Kroger or Costco that week. I don’t include toiletries or cleaning in that $50. Typically I buy most of that stuff in bulk at Costco. It saves me money and time that way. As far as homeschooling goes, if it is something the Lord has called you to, He will equip you to the uttermost. Yes you will make mistakes, you will get frustrated, want to give up, but those are the times that if you seek Him and His will, He will show up in a mighty way. I would just make sure that it is something God wants you to do first. The Great Homeschool convention is a fantastic way to learn more and get your feet wet. I have also heard that Teach them Diligently conference is great as well, but those conferences are usually 4-5hrs away from us.

      P.S. By law attending Kindergarten is not required, most people think it is, but it isn’t. Your child doesn’t have to be enrolled until 1st grade or declared home-schooled until then. I did not inform our school district that I am homeschooling eldest male fruit and I will not do so until 1st grade. If you feel led to start this year, or in the middle of a different year, know that you also have the right to pull your child out at any point during the school year to homeschool. Just inform the superintendent with the proper forms.

      • We too shop in bulk at SAM’s – I believe you said that Costco has more organic options?

        I would definitely love to know your secret! I know beans and rice can be cheap and easy fillers for meals.

        also, I hope I did not seem rude to not acknowledge your miscarriage. We too have had a lost and I do not wish it for anyone to experience. We have children they have seen the face of Jesus!

        My oldest will be attending PreK this year & is looking forward to it. I will see next year what he thinks about doing school at home. I’m definitely willing to take the plunge 🙂

        Blessings!

      • Thank you for acknowledging our loss. It is a comfort to know that we will see our children again! Yes in my experience Costco has a much better selection in organic and all natural foods. In Sam’s defense I have not gone there in a couple years because of that. I do have friends that have memberships to both. They have told me that while Sam’s is getting better, Costco still has them beat. I am hoping to get a post written tonight about my planning method(s), so that it can be published tomorrow. Then next week I can give examples of how I carry it out.

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