Today was a fun day and a busy one. This morning - ON A SATURDAY! - we got up just as early as normal and were out the door by 7:30 am (so for the kids it was earlier than normal) to join in a community leaf raking for Seniors. They served us breakfast at the Boys and Girls club first and then we were given our assignment.
We raked for a few hours and bagged up the leaves and that yard was done. It was a fun family activity. :-) Then we got to go back for to the Boys and Girls club for lunch. It was a great community event. It helps the Seniors, it is fun for us, businesses join in with donations and so we also get some yummy food.
We also got some nice leaves out of the deal. We were needing to put leaves on our septic area so I was glad that we had all these leaves for that purpose. We also put some leaves in our chicken coop which makes that much nicer. Leaves are lovely to look at on the trees and then they are pretty useful after they fall. We will also be putting leaves on our garden.
I asked about all the doughnut boxes at breakfast this morning and they were more than happy to give them to me. I will repurpose them to put boutonnieres and corsages in for the wedding flowers that I do.
So that is my repurposing story for today. :-) I also was able to repurpose a few of the bags but most of them got holes in them.
Today I found time to work on a simple and fun repurposing project that I like to do fairly often - making envelopes.
They are simple to make and people seem to enjoy getting them. I enjoy sending them too and we have also found that the mail men find them fun as well. AND - they repurpose one of those common things to have around the house - calendars. So it is a win-win!
Do you ever make envelopes? What do you do with your old calendars or magazines?
So, this morning I decided to make apple fritters for breakfast. Yummy!
These are deep fat fried so they are really a health food and they can be rather messy but they are good. :-) Today I did some repuposing for the purpose of having something to set my greasy fritters on. I used an old trick that my mom had done when I was a child. We don't keep paper towels around the house (I never really have we use cloth rags instead) but I needed somethign to drain my fritters on. I cut open a paper grocery bag and I used that. This was something my mom did with doughnuts and I was thankful the idea came back to me.
Some might question the sanitation. I agree it probably isn't perfectly germ free but I am not overly worried about that. We need to get exposed to a few things anyway to keep our immune system up and working. :-) I would wonder just how sanitary paper towels are too. When you start thinking on anything like that it does start you to wondering. Any way I used a paper bag that had probably had groceries in it before but then it was neatly folded and put away. I do absorb the fat nicely.
And here is the recipe:
3 1/2 cups flour (I used mostly whole wheat and a little white flour.
5 tsp. Baking Powder
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 t. Salt
1 cup milk (or whey)
2 t. Vanilla
4 T. melted butter
2 c. chopped apples
Combine all the dry ingredients. Then mix in the wet ingredients. Lastly add the apples and stir them in. Drop by the spoonful into hot oil. Brown. Turn once. Drain (on a grocery bag if you desire). Serve hot with cinnamon and sugar, powdered sugar, syrup or honey.
The Bible talks quite about about revival and being revived. That is a lot like having a repurposed - fresh again - life, I believe. I want to share with you a few verses on that subject:
"For thus says the One who is high and lifted up, who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: “I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly, and to revive the heart of the contrite." Isaiah 57:15 "The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple;" Psalms 19:7 "Then we will not turn away from you; revive us, and we will call on your name." Psalm 80:18 May you seek God's revival in your life this week!
I haven't had a chance to get any new repurposing projects done this week - I have been doing oodles of canning instead (I think I am almost done for the year!) so I am going to share some repurposing posts from years past. I hope you enjoy this one where I share a bunch of different ideas for repurposing t-shirts. It is so easy to get a bunch of t-shirts laying around but sometimes they have some issue that makes it so they aren't a favorite (maybe advertising an event long past or a candidate or maybe there is a stain or it is to small - you get the idea) but you can make them into something else. What fun!
Today I thought I would share some verses on Redemption. This is the act where God purchases back something that He already owned. He is going to make us new again. This is so wonderful!
Psalm 103:1-5 "Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget none of His benefits; who pardons all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases; who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion; who satisfies your years with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle." Titus 2:11-14 "For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds." Galatians 4:4-7 "But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. Because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, Abba! Father! Therefore you are no longer a slave, but a son; and if a son, than an heir through God. "
This is Good News!
I had mentioned that I had a bunch of big boxes over taking my basement. I also was needing to decorate a float and I needed to make signs for that. Originally I had thought I would buy poster board to get the look that I wanted.
But then I thought - why not just use some of the extra house paint that we have and paint the cardboard and then make the signs.
So that is what we did. It added another step but saved us some money and used up things that we already had.
Mara, Aaron and Megan helped me paint while Jonathan did dishes instead and Ken worked on other float logistics. I am so thankful for my family!
Our decorated float with those of us who were in the parade. The signs worked out just fine.
My sister Keren drove the van and the rest of us walked.
Except for Megan who was flipping our big "coin" in the back that had Hillary on one side and Donald on the other. That was made with cardboard too.
The theme of the parade was "Proud to B" so we tried to follow it. :-)
This picture is not related to repurposing cardboard boxes but it happened when we were in town for the parade and I found it funny so I thought I would share. While we were at Ken's office doing final decorations the kids and Kitchi walked up the stairs to where the apartments above Ken's office are. Once they got up there however Kitchi got scared and wouldn't come back down. Jonathan ended up having to carry him. He does our stairs fine at home but these were scary ones. :-)
We were in need of "new" t-shirts for a parade. We decided to walk in the University Homecoming parade in order to spread the word about Evan McMullin the candidate that we are supporting for president but we kind of needed t-shirts for that. I had ordered one from Amazon for Ken but I was hoping to buy some from a bulk order that had been made by the MN team for the rest of us. However that shipment was taking a long time and it still hasn't come (one of the other couples on the campaign ordered it and then we were hoping to buy from them). So I decided I would make our own.
We have been involved in enough campaigns over the years that we had a bunch of t-shirts that we had gotten given to us with them so I decided I would repurpose them. All of them already had printing on them so I would need to cover it up in some way.
So I decided to cut circles from the white one
Which I then painted (and I don't think I really used the right paint for this - I used what I had on hand).
I put the McMullin logo in the middle and then put other info around it.
The next step was to use the iron on interfacing which stuck them together.
Then we zig-zagged around the circle.
Jonathan was my very reluctant model.
Anyway - they aren't really professional but the got the message out and they didn't cost me anything. Hooray!
One type of repurposing I do a lot is rather mundane. It is simply reusing jars, containers and bags for storing food and other things in. We put up a lot of food - from the garden, from my parents goats milk (making cheese and such), from the orchard, honey from the hives and meat from animals we butchered. If we bought new bags and containers for all the things we stored we would spend a lot of money.
I like peanut butter jars pretty well for a good size to put my honey in. They may not be quite as attractive as pint jars or a cute little honey jar but it works fine and saves me money.
We did chicken butchering today. We now have a lot of nice meat stored up for the winter. I save bread bags, powdered sugar bags and any other sturdy bag we get food in (though I don't save any bags that have had raw meat in them - after this use they do get tossed) and I wash them out. We then package our meat in them. For an extra layer we put them in grocery bags which are very easy to come by (even when I remember to use cloth grocery bags I find that lots of other people save bags and are willing to share).
Mara doesn't like to be involved in the dirty part of butchering (the boys are better helpers there) but she did help with packaging.
People also save us egg cartons to put our homegrown eggs in. Repurposing packaging saves a lot of money on the "farm".
One of our favorite repurposing projects ever was making this Barbie house for Mara. The boys and Megan helped me make it as a gift and it was well used and loved for 5 years or so at our house before we passed it on.
One of my favorite ways to repurpose has been the making of quilts. I haven't worked on one for quite a while but I am really wanting too! Maybe next month I will find some time to do that. Meanwhile looking through some pictures of ones we have made was rather fun for me. Here are some of the odds and ends of quilts that we have made at our house - primarily from clothes that needed repurposing.
This quilt included fabric folding which was super fun. It was a gift to Ken's sister and husband when they got married.
A baby quilt with a sailing theme.
The quilt on our bed.
I guess this picture is before I hand quilted it.
But I did do it. See....
A quilt for Jonathan.
A "raggy" denim quilt.
With flannel on the other side.
A quilt for Aaron. Super simple but it worked. Quilts don't have to be complicated.
Mara's raggy quilt made from sweatshirts.
A courderoy acorn quilt for a neighbor baby.
Bright and busy.
The kids all made quilts to send to Africa.
Jonathan figuring out the design.
Quilting can be messy!
This quilt is still waiting to be finished. It is in the quilting stage (has been in a box since before we moved) and then it needs to be trimmed around the edges.
Do you make quilts? How do you repurpose old cloths?