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September ~~Low Income Thread~~ - Page 6

post #101 of 397
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leta View Post
A funny story...

Earlier this week, one of the MDC mamas here in F&F pointed out that my family qualifies for weatherization assistance on our house. So I checked it out, it's through an organization called AMCAB in my county.

Yesterday, I was walking my kids and dog in the park, when I felt what I thought was a tree branch or twig brush my arm. I looked down, and there was the biggest dragonfly I have ever seen on my arm. It was the length of 2/3 of my upper arm, and I'm not small- I'm 5'6" and long limbed. I love dragonflies- I have a dragonfly tattoo.
This one was gorgeous, green and blue and black, with silver wings. It just sat there blinking at us I showed it to DD. When I came home, I told DH about it, and he said, "Dragonflies are good luck, you know".

Today, the AMCAB application came in the mail. They insulate attics and walls, something that we were hoping to do the year after next with any luck at all. And it's FREE. AMCAB wants 3 months worth of pay stubs, our most recent heat bill, our most recent electrical bill, and a copy of our property tax bill along with the completed application. We do almost everything online, so I kind of groaned and opened the desk to try to begin the process of requesting paper copies of all that stuff. Everything I needed was in the top drawer of the desk. Do you have any idea how unlikely that is? I didn't even have to rifle through stuff, it was all right there. So then I got the application filled out, and crammed all that stuff in an envelope, and by that time it was already after 5. DH weighed the envelope for me, and it was almost triple the weight allowed for a single stamp.

"Well, crap" I said. "I'll have to go pay and mail it tomorrow." Then, I got in the desk again for something else, and there were three stamps! Again, we do everything online, so we almost never have stamps. But there they were.

I slapped them on the envelope, and said to DH, "I'm off to find a blue mailbox. I just have this feeling that this needs to be sent off today."

DH said, "It's that dragonfly."

I know this probably sounds silly, but we paid more in heat last year than we did in house payments, so insulation would help us out HUGE. I have a good feeling!

:

This is so awesome! Thanks for sharing.
post #102 of 397
Quote:
Wow! That's hard. He didn't qualify for unemployment or disability or worker's comp or anything?
No Dh is a Self employed carpenter we can not afford workmans comp, and Dh pays in at the end of the year so we do not qualify for unemployment .

Luckily we are very frugal and we are trying to make it work. It is just so hard with 5 of us !
post #103 of 397
Thread Starter 

Demand Studios?

I applied to them. I'd be curious to know from your experience how much you make per month? Feel free to write me privately (PM).


Quote:
For mamas that are in a rough spot, you might try working from home if you have a bit of spare time. I do, and it makes a ton of difference. The main company I work for is www.demandstudios.com - freelance writing. They pay $15 an article if you get on with them - might be worth a try. I've been able to do quite a bit during naptimes, early mornings, etc - there's no set schedule to try to stick to, you just write when you can. They pay once a week via paypal.
Jyotsna
post #104 of 397
Morning all

Purity, his dr wanted to prescribe Singular for him (and for me, too) but state insurance doesn't cover it and it's like $90. I hate insurance companies :
I tried again the last time I went to the dr but the same thing happened, the insurance company denied it, so it got left at CVS cause I can't afford it.

Leta, your story about the dragonfly was cool
I have my Energy Assistance appointment today at 9am (wish me luck) I think I have everything, but they always want something else I'm glad the help is there (believe me) but I can't believe they are already doing apps (I got mine the middle of August) they must be expecting a LOT of people this year.

Oh, well, gotta go start waking up the munchkins for school (ohjoy)
post #105 of 397
Thanks, everybody, for not making me feel dumb about the dragonfly story.

Has anybody contacted Merck about getting Singulair for free? They do this sometimes, you know. They need the good PR. Also, if you look around online, you can find it for about $1 a pill. This might still be way too much, especially in families where many need it, but I thought I'd mention it anyway.

Peacemamalove, have you seen a state social worker yet? You said you were getting food assistance, but with an income this low, you should also be getting Medicaid for everyone, TANF, and possibly housing and utility assistance as well.

I've been thinking, for mamas who get SNAP (like me), about Christmas gifts that are food based. I think I've come up with a good idea. We are going to make syrups and can them and give a "selection of gourmet handmade syrups" for holiday gifts.

Chocolate
Maple Flavored Pancake
Strawberry (for houses with kids, definately)
and
Almond (for the coffee drinkers)

We are also thinking of making Hot Fudge and Caramel sauces, like you put on ice cream.

Somebody mentioned upthread that they had given pancake mix, which I think homemade pancake mix and homemade maple flavored syrup would be nice. So would almond syrup and a bag of coffee.

Even if you don't have a canner, if you have the mason jars, lids, and rings, you could can syrups a couple at a time in a big stock pot. Just put them in the water, and, once it's boiling, let them boil for 15 minutes. After you take them out, make sure that you hear the lids pop. That's all there is to it.

Anyway, all this stuff is easy to make- the hardest part is the canning, usually- so if anyone wants recipes, let me know.
post #106 of 397
hi leta,

thanksfor the info we do not qualitfy now though because of Dh's last 4 paychecks. The hardest part is dd4 is on a special diet because of her special needs and we have to travel to get items another great thing about living in the woods everything is so far away and we can only put $10 in our gas tank at a time.

BTW I would love those recipes. I think that is a wonderful idea for gifts for people!!
post #107 of 397
Aha. That's a bummer. On the bright side, either A) soon his last 4 paychecks will be small enough to qualify you or B) he'll start making more money again!

(Ingredients bolded for easy shopping list. All these extracts/flavorings are found in the spice aisle, near the vanilla.)

You start all the syrup recipes by making simple syrup- two parts white sugar to one part water, whisking together, and boiling.
(You can make lower-cal syrup by using half Splenda, but that's more $$$. Also, the syrup won't be as thick.)

For chocolate, add 1/2 cup cocoa powder for every 1 cup simple syrup, a pinch (or two) of salt, and vanilla extract (at least 1/4 tsp. per cup of syrup, but more if you like it.) Add the cocoa and salt while boiling, vanilla after cooling, so as to preserve the flavor.

For pancake syrup, add 2 Tbs molasses to each cup of simple syrup (while boiling). Then add (per 1 cup simple syrup) 1 tsp maple flavoring, 2 tsps butter flavoring, and 3 tsps vanilla extract (after cooling).

For strawberry syrup, add a little red or pink food coloring (or maybe a tiny bit of beet juice?) and 3 tsps strawberry flavoring (after cooling) per cup of simple syrup.

For almond syrup, add 1/2 tsp molasses (for color) per cup of simple syrup while boiling. Add 3 tsps almond extract after cooling.

Hot Fudge Sauce is a little different.

You must first make the sweetned condensed milk, which is:
2 cups dry milk
1.5 cups sugar
2/3 cup boiling water
6 tbs melted butter, slightly cooled

Mix dry milk and sugar together, then slowly add the boiling water. Stir in the melted butter. Whip until smooth.

Then, use it to make the Hot Fudge Sauce:
1 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 cup sugar
¼ cup light corn syrup
4 tbs butter
5 ounces semisweet chocolate (choc chips are fine)
1 tsp vanilla

Melt all ingredients together while whisking. When it reaches a boil, kill the heat, and allow to cool.

Caramel Sauce is the trickiest.

2 cups white sugar with 1 TB molasses stirred in (or 2, if you want a really dark product)
1 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup butter
1/2 tsp each vanilla and almond extracts
corn syrup if needed

Cook together slowly, whisking constantly. You may need to add a little more sweetened condensed milk and/or corn syrup, depending on how thick/dark you want this.

Here's the thing about hot fudge and caramel sauces, vs. syrups: the sauces should be refrigerated. They syrups are fine to can- they become shelf stable when canned. But the sauces have milk and butter in them, so technically they need a pressure canner rather than a hot water bath canner. If we give sauces as gifts, we are going to hot water bath can them, keep them in the fridge, and only take them out to put them in the basket. We are going to give instructions to our giftees to refrigerate them right away, upon arriving home, even before opening. That way we shouldn't kill anyone. So please heed this warning. I don't want anyone playing it fast and loose by leaving these dairy laden sauces out. Unless you have a pressure canner, then all systems go.

Oh, and here's the pancake mix:

3 c. whole wheat flour
3 Tbs sugar
1.5 tsp baking soda
1.5 tsp salt
1/4 c. dry buttermilk (sold by WalMart under "Saco" brand name; in the baking aisle near the dry nonfat milk)
1/4 c. soy flour (also in the baking aisle in a small brown box; usually near the wheat gluten)

To use, combine 1.25 cups mix with 1 cup water and 3 Tbs oil OR melted butter.

(This amount of mix fills a quart jar.)

If you have the dry buttermilk on hand, you might want to try ranch mix, too, that's easy:

3 cups dry buttermilk
1 Tb black pepper
1 Tb dry parsley
1 Tb onion powder
1 Tb granulated garlic
1 Tb paprika
2 tsp ancho chili powder OR cayenne pepper

To use, combine 2 Tbs mix with 1 cup mayo (for dip). If you want dressing consistancy, add 1/4-1/2 cup water.

Regular or lowfat mayo is fine. I use half full fat mayo, half greek yogurt, and that's yummy, too. I suppose if you wanted to, you could give the ranch mix as a gift, since most people have mayo on hand.
post #108 of 397
Oh those are awesome recipes! Thanks so much! I have been looking for a ranch dip recipe since every kind at our store has MSG in it.

Thanks a lot
post #109 of 397
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leta View Post
Thanks, everybody, for not making me feel dumb about the dragonfly story.

Has anybody contacted Merck about getting Singulair for free? They do this sometimes, you know. They need the good PR. Also, if you look around online, you can find it for about $1 a pill. This might still be way too much, especially in families where many need it, but I thought I'd mention it anyway.

Peacemamalove, have you seen a state social worker yet? You said you were getting food assistance, but with an income this low, you should also be getting Medicaid for everyone, TANF, and possibly housing and utility assistance as well.

I've been thinking, for mamas who get SNAP (like me), about Christmas gifts that are food based. I think I've come up with a good idea. We are going to make syrups and can them and give a "selection of gourmet handmade syrups" for holiday gifts.

Chocolate
Maple Flavored Pancake
Strawberry (for houses with kids, definately)
and
Almond (for the coffee drinkers)

We are also thinking of making Hot Fudge and Caramel sauces, like you put on ice cream.

Somebody mentioned upthread that they had given pancake mix, which I think homemade pancake mix and homemade maple flavored syrup would be nice. So would almond syrup and a bag of coffee.

Even if you don't have a canner, if you have the mason jars, lids, and rings, you could can syrups a couple at a time in a big stock pot. Just put them in the water, and, once it's boiling, let them boil for 15 minutes. After you take them out, make sure that you hear the lids pop. That's all there is to it.

Anyway, all this stuff is easy to make- the hardest part is the canning, usually- so if anyone wants recipes, let me know.
I actually made soap last year. The only thing you really need that is not food is the lye. You can get Roebic Crystal Drain opener, which is 100% lye for about $7-8 at a hardware store. The container is more than enough for two batches of 7 POUNDS of soap. Even after gift-giving we are still using the leftovers ourselves. For oils I used coconut, olive, and non hydrogenated vegetable shortening. I used goats milk to make the lye solution and this soap was absolutely wonderful! I mixed honey and oatmeal in to some. I was able to get some colors and scents for free, but if you can't you don't need to use them. You can add other exfoliates instead of oatmeal like poppy seeds or coffee. I gave gifts to all of my friends and family of homemade body care products. I also made lotion, brown suger body scrub, bubble bath, bath salts, and body cream. These were all mostly food-based. For the lotion you need to buy some ingredients, but I am pretty sore I spent less than like $15 online for huge bulk bags of the other ingredients that I still have most of. I would actually be willing to ship a bit to any of you guys who want some because you only need like a teaspoon of each per batch of lotion. PM me if you wan to know what recipes I used.
post #110 of 397
These are all great ideas, Thank you
My kids have already given me their X-mas lists (eek)
Lucky for me it's early enough I think I can actually swing what they want (shocking...)
post #111 of 397
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leta View Post
Aha. That's a bummer. On the bright side, either A) soon his last 4 paychecks will be small enough to qualify you or B) he'll start making more money again!

(Ingredients bolded for easy shopping list. All these extracts/flavorings are found in the spice aisle, near the vanilla.)

You start all the syrup recipes by making simple syrup- two parts white sugar to one part water, whisking together, and boiling.
(You can make lower-cal syrup by using half Splenda, but that's more $$$. Also, the syrup won't be as thick.)

For chocolate, add 1/2 cup cocoa powder for every 1 cup simple syrup, a pinch (or two) of salt, and vanilla extract (at least 1/4 tsp. per cup of syrup, but more if you like it.) Add the cocoa and salt while boiling, vanilla after cooling, so as to preserve the flavor.

For pancake syrup, add 2 Tbs molasses to each cup of simple syrup (while boiling). Then add (per 1 cup simple syrup) 1 tsp maple flavoring, 2 tsps butter flavoring, and 3 tsps vanilla extract (after cooling).

For strawberry syrup, add a little red or pink food coloring (or maybe a tiny bit of beet juice?) and 3 tsps strawberry flavoring (after cooling) per cup of simple syrup.

For almond syrup, add 1/2 tsp molasses (for color) per cup of simple syrup while boiling. Add 3 tsps almond extract after cooling.

Hot Fudge Sauce is a little different.

You must first make the sweetned condensed milk, which is:
2 cups dry milk
1.5 cups sugar
2/3 cup boiling water
6 tbs melted butter, slightly cooled

Mix dry milk and sugar together, then slowly add the boiling water. Stir in the melted butter. Whip until smooth.

Then, use it to make the Hot Fudge Sauce:
1 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 cup sugar
¼ cup light corn syrup
4 tbs butter
5 ounces semisweet chocolate (choc chips are fine)
1 tsp vanilla

Melt all ingredients together while whisking. When it reaches a boil, kill the heat, and allow to cool.

Caramel Sauce is the trickiest.

2 cups white sugar with 1 TB molasses stirred in (or 2, if you want a really dark product)
1 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup butter
1/2 tsp each vanilla and almond extracts
corn syrup if needed

Cook together slowly, whisking constantly. You may need to add a little more sweetened condensed milk and/or corn syrup, depending on how thick/dark you want this.

Here's the thing about hot fudge and caramel sauces, vs. syrups: the sauces should be refrigerated. They syrups are fine to can- they become shelf stable when canned. But the sauces have milk and butter in them, so technically they need a pressure canner rather than a hot water bath canner. If we give sauces as gifts, we are going to hot water bath can them, keep them in the fridge, and only take them out to put them in the basket. We are going to give instructions to our giftees to refrigerate them right away, upon arriving home, even before opening. That way we shouldn't kill anyone. So please heed this warning. I don't want anyone playing it fast and loose by leaving these dairy laden sauces out. Unless you have a pressure canner, then all systems go.

Oh, and here's the pancake mix:

3 c. whole wheat flour
3 Tbs sugar
1.5 tsp baking soda
1.5 tsp salt
1/4 c. dry buttermilk (sold by WalMart under "Saco" brand name; in the baking aisle near the dry nonfat milk)
1/4 c. soy flour (also in the baking aisle in a small brown box; usually near the wheat gluten)

To use, combine 1.25 cups mix with 1 cup water and 3 Tbs oil OR melted butter.

(This amount of mix fills a quart jar.)

If you have the dry buttermilk on hand, you might want to try ranch mix, too, that's easy:

3 cups dry buttermilk
1 Tb black pepper
1 Tb dry parsley
1 Tb onion powder
1 Tb granulated garlic
1 Tb paprika
2 tsp ancho chili powder OR cayenne pepper

To use, combine 2 Tbs mix with 1 cup mayo (for dip). If you want dressing consistancy, add 1/4-1/2 cup water.

Regular or lowfat mayo is fine. I use half full fat mayo, half greek yogurt, and that's yummy, too. I suppose if you wanted to, you could give the ranch mix as a gift, since most people have mayo on hand.
Thanks so much for sharing!
These look great
And you canbe sure these won't be re-gifted! =)
post #112 of 397
Thread Starter 

Considering midwifery school on a restricted income?

Just curious if anyone has considered midwifery school on a restricted income?
post #113 of 397
I will be doing it. I have pretty much accepted the fact that I will need to go into debt to finish school. Make sure to look into scholarships. Thats about all the advice I can give you.
post #114 of 397
I just came back from our local pick-your-own apple farm, : was able to pick two biggish bags of apples (nice apples too ) and I only spent (are you ready for this) $3!!!!!!!!!!: They kids got to "walk" (run/cavort) through an orchard and actually SEE where their food comes from for once, and it cost less than the store. I am a happy camper right now.
post #115 of 397
:
post #116 of 397
yay!!!!! That is totally awesome . We love going apple picking!
post #117 of 397
Thread Starter 
The apple picking looks good. I need to search for a place to take my kids to do that. Especially like the running and cavorting : ) And wow, $3 is the icing on the cake! Very good deal.


My ex has not paid into the system yet for child support this month. He called up my parents (75 years old) and spent 15 mintutes shouting at them, demanding to know if they could hear him, ect, then told them that he wasn't going to make the child support payment this month. He is always telling my son that "your grandfather and grandmother don't care for me anymore". I'm not sure just why that is! PaLEEZE! Anyway, it adds to my low income problem, when he doesn't do his job to pay child support ect.


I have another smaller problem, but still worrisome. I have been buying the 20lb bag of rice from Whole Foods, that is long, brown, basmati rice. They are not carrying that now, but another short grain brown rice. Our family depends on this rice as part of our diet. We eat rice every single day. I've asked them if they can order, but the person I spoke to doesn't know.

Anyone know a friend or family member who works at Whole Foods? Can I order this? This is vital to our diet. I am currently buying from their bulk bins, about 5lbs at a time. It's much more expensive that way!
post #118 of 397
Thread Starter 
Natural Mama, do I need to go to Midwifery School to become a midwife? Can I do an apprenticeship and do DEM? I live in TN.
post #119 of 397
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jyotsna View Post

I have another smaller problem, but still worrisome. I have been buying the 20lb bag of rice from Whole Foods, that is long, brown, basmati rice. They are not carrying that now, but another short grain brown rice. Our family depends on this rice as part of our diet. We eat rice every single day. I've asked them if they can order, but the person I spoke to doesn't know.

Anyone know a friend or family member who works at Whole Foods? Can I order this? This is vital to our diet. I am currently buying from their bulk bins, about 5lbs at a time. It's much more expensive that way!
I don't know if you rely on FS every month, but azure standard has really good prices on bulk foods. Here is Lunberg long grain brown basmati rice for $25.75/ 25 lbs http://www.azurestandard.com/product.php?id=GR037 (you have to sign in to see the price).
post #120 of 397
No, you don't have to go to midwifery school. There are more hoops to jump through if you do not. You need to do what is called a portfolio evaluation process. Here is a list of the requirements to become a CPM trough varying paths
http://www.narm.org/htb.htm#pep
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