Saturday, July 7, 2012


   Yesterday was supposed to be the first day of a year long experiment to see if I can practice what I preach about trying to be as self sufficient as possible. To not only feed my family and take care of their needs, but also make a living raising the money we need to live on.

   Of course everything went wrong right off the bat. I woke up to the news that our pantry had been over run with ants. This meant my new morning routine was cancelled until the problem at hand was fixed. This took hours. The pantry had to be cleaned out, and sprayed for ants, then re-sprayed, and then wiped clean. Then all the food staples had to be restocked in their proper places.

   Now that the morning was gone, I had to go over to my Mom & Dad's to stay with Dad while my Mom had a beauty shop appointment. My Dad is doing better since he got home from his stay at the hospital, but he is still weak. The main thing is he wants to ramble around like he used to do and he is very unstable on his feet. We're afraid he will fall and hurt himself.

   Since all of my plan didn't get implimented, I did try to do as much as possible even on a small scale . A way I know that anyone can bring some money home is to pick up aluminum cans. They are everywhere if you look for them . The problem is, most people drive right by them. To stand a chance to really get enough to be worth your while you have to get out and walk.  A good way to lose weight!This is also great excercise!

   I drove into town yesterday and watched the ditches as I rode along. When I started seeing a few along the shoulder of the road I pulled over, cut the truck off, and walked a little while and picked up what was lying there. A couple of stops like that and soon I had almost a whole garbage can full. If you check around the town you live in I am sure there are public parks, ballfields, and car washes. All of these places have public garbage cans. If you add them on your "can route", you'll be surprised how fast the amount of cans you can gather each day will add up. The last time I sold cans I got 80 cents a pound, it does add up if you wait until you have a good amount of cans before you go sell them.

   On Fridays I save some money on bread by going to our local "dollar store". A lot of things are a bargain at the dollar stores, but some are not. You have to compare the size amounts on the packages. But our local "dollar store" has a bread man who shows up on Fridays and brings brand name buns, and breads that normally sell for2 or 3 dollars for 1 dollar. Yes they are fast approaching the expiration sell by date, but I have never gotten old bread. If you plan on eating it that week it has always been just as soft and fresh as any I've paid full price for at the grocery store. It's a good way to save a few bucks you can use for some thing else.

   For anyone coming late to my party , (and shame on ya'll) , I grow a garden every year. The more you grow, the less you have to buy. It doesn't take a couple of acres to supply a lot of food for your table. You can literally grow all you need in your own backyard. I grow tomatoes and yesterday I picked some red and green Mortgage Lifter tomatoes, the red one are for BLT"s & sandwiches, and the green ones are for fried green tomatoes. We also grow Roma's for tomatoe paste.

   It sounds like alot , but all of my garden is only on less than a 1/4 acre. My tomatoe patch is only a couple of rows. But, we haven't bought a tomatoe all summer, and we won't probably the rest of the year. Throw in a few rows of peas, butterbeans, okra, peppers, cucumbers, squash, and egg plants and you got yourself a garden. It only takes 30 minutes to an hour a day and you can save a fortune at the grocery store.

   Oh well that was the good part of yesterday. On to today! More later as the day progresses.

Jim Cobb Coleman.


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