Frugal Friday : bird nests, ice cream cones and DIY rhubarb pesticide

Morning folks!

It’s been a busy week in these parts and today I want to share some of the happenings with ya’ll. I also wanted to start chronicling our frugal lifestyle in a more hands on “live” type of way so I’m testing out a Frugal Friday series where I give you fine folks an update on all things frugal and lifestyle related going on in our house.

Last weekend was busy. We headed out to the country where we farm a large plot of land to stockpile veggies for the winter. This is a huge money saver for us since we’re able to feed our family fresh, pesticide free produce throughout the winter without spending a penny. Mer had some maintenance stuff to get done like cutting the grass and some clean up. So, Margs and I took advantage and spent some quality time watching dad hard at work, swinging and taking in the peacefulness of the surrounding forest and farms.

We also spent a good chunk of time asparagus hunting! At some point some local farmer must have planted asparagus in his field since we’ve had asparagus spears popping up within the grass patches surrounding the garden. Margsy was super helpful and would find them and scream “maaaaamaaaaaa” to get my attention. I would have liked to pick more but time and toddler attention span were becoming an issue so we left with a small bunch that I cooked up for dinner that night.

If you’re curious I cut the spears into 1 inch pieces and pan friend it with some home cured pancetta. It was absolutely delicious. I then used the leftovers later this week by adding a little fresh tomato, basil and garlic and putting together a really quick pasta dish. We don’t like wasting food in our house so I’m forever getting creative with leftovers and creating new meals. Pasta is a household favorite so I knew I couldn’t go wrong.

On Tuesday, we headed to Montreal for the day to celebrate a friends graduation from a local university. It was great to catch up with our friends and their kiddos and celebrate all his hard work and effort. We were treated to an amazing BBQ at their place after the convocation. We stayed out way passed our bedtime and with the drive to get us home we arrived back to our beds at nearly 2am! It was well worth it though since we had an incredible time catching up with them.

On Wednesday, the weather finally started to turn around so Margsy and I took advantage and spent the majority of the day outside. Her new obsession is removing the white rock that runs around the outer edge of our pool and then promptly putting it back by counting from 1 to 10.

See all that water above? We got so much rain early in the week and our backyard is struggling to properly drain it. We recently discovered that our house is built on a clay base which really isn’t ideal. We’re going to try and DIY level the backyard so that we can encourage proper water drainage. There’s one particular area that essentially becomes a swamp every time it rains.

On Thursday, I was thrilled to see that the eggs that were sitting in the nest in our backyard had hatched! There are now 3 adorable baby birds living in there and I can’t help but head over a couple of times a day to have a peak. Guys, the nest is absolutely incredible – It’s perfectly round and basically popped up over night. It’s really quite amazing to think that tiny birds built this thing. Animals are incredible- they never cease to amaze me.

I also spent some time making my own pesticide. No, I wasn’t locked in my basement brewing and experimenting with chemicals! Last month when we headed to the farmer’s market to buy vegetable plants to plant in our garden I decided I wanted to experiment with planting brussels sprouts which would have been a first for us. We have planted things like broccoli and cauliflower but haven’t trued brussels sprouts yet. In any case, Mer inquired about whether we’d have to spray the plants to prevent pests and a local farmer gave us some incredible advice about making our own pesticide from rhubarb! Well, we had a bunch growing in our backyard so we decided to give it a go.

Yesterday was a scorcher so Mer and I decided to treat Margsy to an ice cream cone after dinner to cool off. We went to a local 50’s inspired ice cream shop that we found while exploring the area last year. Baby girl loves eating soft serve and we couldn’t help but laugh at how efficient she’s become at polishing off a cone. Last year we’d give her little spoonfuls of store bought ice cream but she had never had her very own cone. Well, this is the 2nd cone she’s had all to herself and let me tell you she’s really gotten the hang of it!

We’ve got a pretty busy weekend ahead. Tomorrow we’re off to a wedding and Sunday we’re entertaining! It should be loads of fun!

How was your week? Anything fun planned for the weekend?

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9 Comments

  1. DIYMess
    June 9, 2017 / 7:44 am

    Nothing beats your own produce. Have you looked into permaculture as a way of reducing pests? It’s something I’m messing with.

    • June 9, 2017 / 7:45 am

      No I haven’t actually. How does it work?

      • DIYMess
        June 9, 2017 / 10:41 am

        Well the bits I use, as its quite a broad topic, is planting certain plants with other plants to detract pests. For example planting marigolds with tomatoes to stop insects. As a whole principle it is about being as sustainable as possible.

        • June 10, 2017 / 6:00 am

          Ah yes!!! I’ve actually heard of this but didn’t know it’s name! Thank you for sharing 🙂

  2. June 9, 2017 / 8:00 am

    Do you just boil up the rhubarb? (Argh – it should really go into that pie!!) Or is there something else to add?

    • June 9, 2017 / 8:05 am

      The leaves and some stocks are boiled up the rest was used for pie 😊

    • June 10, 2017 / 6:00 am

      Thank you! We love growing our own food 😍

  3. July 26, 2017 / 10:47 pm

    Sounds like a fun week! And I hear ya, Toddler attention spans are pretty short 🙂

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