Essentially Loving Life

updates at the cabin here on the mountain

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Summer is here! I’m so excited to play outside and swing at the park! I love being outside, except mama makes me wear a hat and sunscreen.

So much has been happening since I talked to you last. I’m getting four new teeth and I’ve been crawling around everywhere. I really want to walk so I practice standing up a lot on my own and walk with mommy or daddy.

Daddy’s been busy here at the cabin. This last weekend he hooked the cistern up to the house and has been hauling water all week to fill it up. Now mommy can wash more than a couple loads a day. He also covered up several ditches and dug fence post holes to get the horse paddock started. I’m so excited to have my horses home.

And mama’s been busy too! She just started working as a wellness advocate for DoTerra essential oils. She’s so excited about it and is already using them on all of us. I’m not crazy about the clove and coconut oil on my gums, but it does make the teething pain go away. And the lavender makes me sleepy. Anyways, mama said if I wanted to mention her contact information, that I could share it with you if you’re interested incorporating essential oils into your daily life. Her Instagram account is under essentially_loving_life and you can email her at samosart@gmail.com or go to her website:

http://www.mydoterra.com/stephanieamos

Well, I’m off to take a nap. Hope you’re all having a wonderful week and playing outside a lot!

❤️ Cody

 

 

 

Summer, where are you ?

a little blurb about the weather and what’s been happening on the mountain

 

The weather has been quite dreary this past week but we’re seeing some sun today with a side of wind. This morning, mama, the dogs and I went for a little hike to the far corner of our property and back. Everyone seemed a little out of breath but me. I didn’t think it was that bad! But that was before the wind started.

So yesterday I had a dr’s appointment in town but afterwards, mama and I stopped by the Mission Thrift Store to see if they had any bouncy walker things for me but they didn’t. What we did find was 5 onesies, 3 pairs of pants, 2 pairs of shorts and a shirt all for $5.79! Here’s a picture of most of them. I’m wearing the shirt and a pair of sweatpants today…

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Mommy loves a good bargain! She’s on a couple apps that sells clothes, but she hasn’t bought anything yet from them since she says she can get better deals in town.

So today is my daddy’s birthday and his and mommy’s 10th year anniversary! I can hardly wait for him to get home from work so we can play! My Aunt Ellen gave us a real nice,  comfortable sofa that daddy and I like to hang out on. Thanks Aunt Ellen!

Hey! Did I tell you I can crawl on all fours now?! Its so much fun to see momma panic when it looks like I’m going to get into trouble! I’m really wanting to walk but I need assistance still. Some day soon….

Well, I hope you all had a wonderful week and have a great weekend planned!

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💙 Cody

 

Solar Talk

 

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Lately mamas been blogging since I’ve been napping quite a bit, but I’m up now so let’s talk solar!

Daddy said our system contains four L16  batteries. It’s powered by eight Siemens 75 watt solar panels. We have another eight panels that we still need to put up, but for now we’re doing fine with what we have.

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Eventually we’ll also have a wind turbine up on a 60 foot tower. More about that later. I’m getting sleepy so I’ll talk with you all later.

Have a great weekend!

 

Spend less than $50 for groceries

What?! How is that possible? Cody’s napping right now so I thought I’d share with you how I’ve been saving my family money on groceries. First, I have to admit. I’m a Pinterest addict. I LOVE Pinterest. When I first became hooked, my husband used to tease me about being addicted. Of course I would deny it, but the truth is…I am. But I don’t think it’s a bad thing when it helps you and your family save money!

I’ve known for quite some time that planning ahead will almost always save you money in anything you do. For example, meal planning. I know it can be a little time consuming if you have run out of ideas or just don’t know where to start, but believe me, it’s totally worth it. And there’s always Pinterest for ideas! (wink, wink)

Last week I made out a meal plan for the week and with the help of my husband and our freezer, we only spent $40!!! I actually couldn’t believe it myself. We did this at our local grocery store without any coupons. I wish I still had that receipt to show you, but I think it has been accidentally thrown out. So this week I made sure to keep our receipt and our meal plan so I could share with you how we spent less than $50 on groceries for this week.

Like most moms, you run out of fresh ideas for dinner if you cook a lot, so I turn to my trusty Pinterest app for suggestions. When I start my meal planning, I make a list in my Evernote app and call it meal planning for the dates of that week. I only do a week at a time right now because we’re still adjusting to life off grid. We don’t have our freezer here at the cabin, so it’s a little trickier to plan meals when you can’t see what you have on hand.

Here is our meal plan for this week:

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As you can see, I like to add the main ingredients I need for each recipe so I can add it to my grocery list. Once I have my meal plan completed, I make the grocery list. I use items that I may already have as well. This keeps the cost of your groceries down considerably. Check out your freezer and see what you can use. You’ll be pleasantly surprised how far you can get with what you already have on hand.

Here’s a copy of our receipt from our local grocery store. We live 20 miles to the nearest town and if we want to shop at Safeway, City Market or Wal-Mart, we’d have to drive at least 60 miles. The last couple weeks we decided to see how far we can stretch our money and save with groceries and the fuel expenses.

 

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*While we’re at the store, my husband adds up each item so we know where we stand with our budget. You may have to improvise and put a couple of things back that you have on your list if you go over your budget. This week my husband put his cereal back on the shelf knowing it would save us $4 and he only eats cereal on the weekends. I put my milk back and saved $2.49. We also just bought one can of biscuits for breakfast sandwiches instead of two. If we need more, I’ll just make them from scratch.

I hope this post inspires you to look at your grocery budget and see where you can save. It is amazing how much money we spend on food not knowing exactly where the money goes!

Have a blessed and beautiful week!!!

 

 

Hold on to Your Hat!

 

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Full moon rising

Last week we had a gorgeous full moon. Mamma couldn’t help take a few shots. And sometimes at night we get some pretty spectacular sunsets like this one…

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Sunset over the Sangre de Cristo mountains

But lately it’s been super windy!!! Just yesterday, grandpa stopped by after he was checking on a solar system and showed us some pictures of a place just up the road from us. The wind blew the house over! Now this isn’t your typical house on a concrete foundation. They are raised on concrete pillars. And they’re small. But still! That gives you an idea how windy it’s been here. Hopefully today it calms down a little. I’m hoping mamma will take me out for a stroll with the doggies.

Yesterday we spent a lot of time in the kitchen. Mamma and I baked bread, made some biscuits and then we tried making homemade tortillas. We didn’t have a rolling pin, so we used a Bronco drinking glass that seemed to do the trick. She made beef enchiladas with the tortillas. I sure wish I could of tried them. They sure smelled yummy, but daddy said I’m too little yet…

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homemade tortillas

Over the weekend we went to our storage unit and daddy brought a bunch of  cool stuff home! Now we have a big rug upstairs that I can crawl on and a comfy chair downstairs that daddy and I sit on at night while the fire is crackling. And there’s a pretty mirror in the bathroom now so I can smile and make faces at mamma!

Well, I suppose I should go for now. We’re blogging on mamma’s phone and her battery is about to expire. I think she needs to set it in the sun a bit. 😉

 

Spring Snow

imageLast week we had about 2′ of fresh powder.  It was wet and heavy. Today it’s close to 70 and melting! Spring is officially here in Colorado. Going on our fifth week here at the cabin and getting the hang of how to live off grid. Cody’s busy playing today and asked if I’d write for him, so bear with me.

On sunny days like today and when we have plenty of water in our tank, I do laundry. Our water pump takes a lot of power, so we usually turn everything off  (in the breaker box) until the pump is full or until we’re done doing laundry, dishes, bathing…

Lately I’ve found that we do a lot of improvisation. For example, yesterday I wanted to make a Mongolian Beef stir fry, but I didn’t have one of the main ingredients. Soy sauce. So I turned to my go-to (Pintrest), and found a recipe for homemade soy sauce. I’ll link you to the recipe when I get to the computer. Feeding Cody and blogging on my phone at the moment. 😉 Anyways, dinner was delicious even though it took longer than planned due to having to make the soy sauce, but it was worth it.

So I’m curious if anyone is really reading our blog. I know we’re just starting out, but I hope to keep it going with my informative posts as well as delicious recipes I come across. If you are a reader of our blog and would like to know something we haven’t discussed, let us know! We’d be happy to share.

*photo credit daddy aka lngstrngr

 

 

Sun Juice

A couple weeks ago, grandpa came up and wired our solar panels to the cabin. YaY!!! We only use the geenerator if we don’t have any sun. The week before, daddy was installing the panels on the metal rack. See?

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Today, mamma and I were walking our dogs up the driveway before the clouds came. She took this picture so you can see what the cabin looks like with the solar panels up…

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See all that metal laying in the front? That’s a big metal building that one of my daddy’s friends gave him. Mommy and daddy drove down to Texas to disassemble it and bring it home two years ago. We’re hoping we can get it up this summer…

This week marks our fourth week here at the cabin. While daddy’s busy at work, mamma and I stay busy doing laundry, eating, taking naps and just recently started baking bread. I can hardly wait until I can try some! Daddy says I’m too little yet.

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Speaking of naps, I’m getting a little sleepy, so I’m going to go for now. See ya next time!