Saturday, April 22, 2017

Garage Sale Day!

Trees in bloom, a month late due to our cold weather

Mom and I decided to go to a Church sale and some garage sales today and I completely scored, even though the day was grey and threatening to rain, it held off until we were done shopping.  First up  at the Church sale I found these beautiful blue Mexican glasses, five in total which hubby immediately fell in love with therefore one is not in the picture as he had scrubbed it up and took it away.  I actually bought these to resell as the cost was so low and Mexican glass sells here really easily.  Apparently we are keeping them though lol. 

5 Mexican blown glasses $2.50 (one missing as hubby claimed it before I took pictures)

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Playing in the dirt

March was an extremely rainy month here with temperatures lower than normal and April is looking much the same - except for Saturday.  We had sunshine and hubby and I went to Home Depot (aka garden crack house).  I spent $35 on a few flowers including the mini daisy above ($8 for that plant).  I have owned that blue glazed pot for 20 years though, you buy quality pots and they last a really long time.  I can't show all of the work we did as didn't take any pictures that day - and it is raining again today so you only get the shots of things that are protected from the elements.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017


 This blog is about to take a direction I have never gone, primarily due to the fact that I am extremely camera-shy and have a stalker.  After 14 years of knowing hubby (we met April of 2003) I am hoping that is in the past and although I do not use our real names on this blog I will be posting pictures of us from here on out, not just pictures of the places we go to as in the past. Here is a fast catch-up of our adventures the last several years.  We love traveling, snorkeling, kayaking, the outdoors and our dog Buddy (who has graced many a photo here).  I am going to be keeping the privacy of the rest of our family so you will only see the three of us :)  I promise from here on out to take more shots of us and share them with you.  I tend to be the picture taker so there will likely be more of hubby and Buddy but I am trying to change that in the future so stay tuned!
 Madrid, Spain 2016

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Grocery Roundup and Losing It

Here's how March shook out grocery-wise:

Budget $525 less overage from previous months = $507.60

Actual Spent $512.70 - over a little but reduced previous months overage so a definite win.

I managed to get a free box of lucky charms on St. Patricks Day from a local grocery store but did not use any coupons.  Not my favorite but in a pinch will do for cold cereal.  Right now I am eating fruit with yogurt or smoothies for breakfast so hubby will have to eat these at some point.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Finally A Real Day Off

Saturday morning we woke up at 345 am so hubby could go to the airport for his 6 am flight to Calgary for business.  Usually his business trips are weekdays but in this case a client asked for training on a Sunday so he had to fly in on Saturday and the later flights got in too late in the day.  I drove him to the airport and went back to bed for an hour and a half and woke up feeling like crud which usually happens when my sleeping pattern is off.  As this was the first day off for me in a long time I had a date with my Mom so I didn't let myself feeling tired stop me.

First stop was to pick up a little plate I had won the bid on our local Facebook bidding site.  At first glance it is a bit weird, not for everyone but I instantly recognized it as an old piece direct from France.  Fortunately the seller is a lady who I know already and she buys neat things at garage sales and sells them for a very small profit to supplement her senior income.  She has very good taste.  This is the third item I have bought from her.  I paid $8.  It is worth much more and she actually knew that but told me she just likes to flip things quickly to make sure she has money coming in.  It is a piece of French pottery made in the Loire Valley between 1929 and 1953, the pottery is named Blois.  I did a bunch of research before I purchased it and the swan with an arrow through it is the symbol of Queen Claude of France.  It is in beautiful shape with one tiny chip on the underside round but the colours are vibrant and it is a nice piece to add to my pottery collection.  I need to display it and have all of my kitchen cupboard tops free so soon I will be looking or stands so I can put up all the pieces I've collected in my travels.  Other pieces from the Blois pottery are worth much more but this is from the last of the 5 potters and not worth as much.  I have a thing for turquoise and this instantly attracted me to it.  FYI my grandfather (Mom's Dad) was from France and he had 17 brothers and sisters (his dad had 8 kids with first wife then she died and he remarried and had 9 more, my grandfather was the second youngest of the second wife).  He emigrated to the USA when he was 20.  Mom has never made it to France but I fully intend to and hopefully can connect with some long lost cousins in both the Nice area and Paris area.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Fast Times

Seal Bay Park
 Another busy week at livingrichonthecheap.  We worked all weekend but both days stopped at 2pm and went on some adventures with Buddy.  We took him on a walk in the rain forest at Seal Bay Park which is a beautiful path through the ferns and moss, down a very steep hill and the bottom opens up to Seal Bay.  It was a pretty but cold day only a few degrees above freezing.  Buddy loves long hikes, strange for a small dog with short legs but he never gets tired, even after walking for several kilometres.

I look like a hunchback in this picture with Buddy - I need to quit leaning into photos.  What you don't see is Buddy is standing on a 3.5 foot gigantic moss laden stump that the forest is retaking.  

 One of my favorite times of the year - when asparagus is finally affordable again (I only buy it when it is less than $2.99 per lb, this was $2.49 per lb).  I like to saute it in olive oil, chopped garlic, cayenne pepper and usually put in peppers and fresh mushrooms but I had neither of those so added some frozen corn and it turned out to be a nice combo.  I also added a splash of pear cider as I happened to be drinking it at the time.  Wild asparagus actually grows here, I found a spear of it one time near one of our favorite beaches..  Unfortunately my schedule doesn't permit hunting and foraging for wild asparagus right now.

My favorite flower, the tulip.  Mom bought me these for helping her give her cat medicine.  Apparently it turns out the cat's allergy tests came back negative.  We are hoping things get better naturally at this point, although the cat is still on a restricted diet.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Dog Poop and Aliens

That is what I dreamt about the other night, dog poop and aliens.  No idea, go ahead and do some dream interpretation if you wish too.  It is likely a reflection of the state of my mind right now :)

Mom's cat - Tippy

Instead of blogging about our company having too much business and being overworked (think 30 days in a row with only one day off) I am thankful today to put one gigantic project to bed.  Life is good other than that. I am looking forward this evening to spending some time with a friend who I haven't seen in a couple of months and is starting her own business.  My days are spent working and then popping over to Mom's house to help her give her cat a pill a day that is required right now as the vet tries to figure out what her rescue kitty is allergic too.   Mom finds it difficult to give the pill to her alone without getting scratched so I go over, nice to be within 5 minutes of her house.  Only a few more days of that and the vet will get the allergy results back.  The cat scratches and has lost a lot of hair because of it.  Other than that she has turned out to be a great cat - finally settled down after two weeks of living behind the washing machine. She came out, now enjoys being petted and even sits in Mom's lap when she is watching TV.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Another Mini-Adventure Booked and Treasure Found

Anchors Inn Ucluelet

This week I made good use of our weekends away fund and booked 4 nights to the same cabin we went to last June in Ucluelet.  It is one of  the cheapest places in the area to stay and was absolutely perfect for hubby and I to take Buddy with us on a mini-vacation.  The Ucluelet/Tofino area of Vancouver Island is the most expensive area, much higher generally than even Victoria.  I feel so fortunate we found it last year and are able to go back this summer.  Cost for four nights ($170 a night plus tax) is $714 plus a $20 pet fee which they donate to their local SPCA.  It checks all the boxes - right on the ocean, can kayak right off the front of the cabin, allows our dog in a safe environment, has a mini-kitchenette and BBQ, has good internet (important as we still must check/answer emails for our business) and even cable in case it rains and rains which is always possible on the coast.  It just so happens my 48th birthday falls within those days so I get to celebrate it in a lovely spot (hubby's 55th we will be in Santorini, Greece in June).  

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Dollars and Cents

1.  Grocery budget for February was $525 less January overage = $519.30.  Spent in January?  $536.70 - over by $17.40 which will be taken off the March budget.  Why do I carry forward the overage?  Because there is little to no chance of making my yearly budget if I do not have to be held accountable by overage.  The biggest bargain in February after buying our new upright freezer was 2 4 kg boxes of skinless boneless chicken breast for $19.99 each, this due to having a rain check from a special that had sold out in January.  The rain check was for 2 boxes.  Had I been able to buy it in January I would have only have bought one box as had a much smaller freezer.  The new freezer has instantly saved us some money!  This should last a couple of months although we do eat it quite frequently.  No other really great bargains this month.  I've avoided buying a cucumber for 3 weeks as refuse to pay $3 for one.  I finally managed to buy one today for .99 cents so we are back in cucumbers which are a bit of a staple at our house.  This is twice the size of a normal one so I really got my money's worth.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Two Years

Age 3 months - the week we brought him home

So we have spent two years with Buddy now and what a great dog he turned out to be.  He brings us joy every single day and is always up for playing or going for a walk.