Wednesday, July 31, 2013

I Was Able To Feed My Family Without Buying Groceries For 15 days!

 
I have really enjoyed this year, taking on a few
tasks in a very old fashioned manner. ;)
One of those has been laundry.
For years, I have pulled my clothes out of the
machine unsatisfied with the results.
Today, I took on the laundry by hand.
I got whites whiter, brights brighter,
I spotted better than ever
and was so much happier with the results.
I just can't get around the face that
every new thing I take on in an old fashioned
manner is so much more appealing.
We went through a rough month
financially in our household. I decided to
get creative in the kitchen.
I literally went 15 days without buying a single
grocery item! 15 days!
It took a lot of pulling out old cook books...
the kind with recipes from scratch.
We have several with recipes over 100 years old.
When I pull out those old cookbooks,
I scan through them to see which recipes I had
ingredients for....which of the others I could sub
with what I had and voila, I made amazing meals
without spending a penny for days!
I am still amazed at what I've accomplished.
Using those old cookbooks has felt so enchanting
It's hard to explain.
There was a day we went and picked wild blackberries
I came home and made a cobbler without eggs using
sweetened condensed milk as a milk substitute.
He can't quit raving about the cobbler.
I've learned sweetened condensed milk
takes the place of eggs and milk in sweet recipes
quite nicely. I made a delicious loaf of
homemade bread that was to die for. I had literally nothing
in my cupboards but was able to make this
with what I had in my baking area.
It used flour, sugar, salt, dry yeast, water and
shortening.. that was it.
I have NEVER tasted bread that could even rival.
It was like the bread they bring out to you at
restuarants with butter. It was heavenly. I kept
snipping pieces.
I had a bag of potatoes that I made daily at breakfast time
We happened to have some dried mushrooms
and of course spices and flour and I whipped
up gravies you wouldn't believe along with biscuits
I made crepes using literally nothing but eggs, flour,
water,salt cin etc... and they were amazing.
Yes, you can make crepes with water instead of milk.
They turn out just fine. I just add a little
sugar, cin and nutmeg to enhance the flavor.
We sauted some bananas with cinamon and brown sugar
to fill them with and it was pure heaven.
It was an amazing couple of weeks.
I am amazed. My domestic ability increased tremendously
and I learned that we spend far too much for
groceries on average. Never ever buy premade
when it's as simple to make homemade.
My advice?
Start collecting OLD cookbooks.
The kinds that don't have recipes with premade
ingredients.
Too many of my magazines suggest buying already
made crepes or packaged biscuits (biscuits are
far too simple to make from scratch to ever
need the store bought variety)
Keep those cookbooks. They are gold in times of
need. YOu can seriously drop your grocery budget simply
learning to cook from scratch.
I've learned to skim through them rather quickly and
never have to look anything up online.
I am seriously addicted to my cookbooks. They are
pure heaven.
If you find some from the 50s and 60s they
are absolutely charming. They don't only
tell you how to make something. They even plan
the display out for you with illustrations.
I have learned so much about how to arrange plates in
a lovely manner. Find those cookbooks that are
hitting thrift stores like crazy now. Sadly the
old housewives who cooked are dying and their cookbooks
are ending up in thrift stores now.
They are a true treasure. A glimpse of the past.
Our home has made food that rivaled any restuarant
nightly since I started buying them.
Enjoy ;)
I apologize for recent declines in posts. I assure
you it is not a trend. Just some stressful
times on the homefront. We are making it through
but prayers are very welcome ;)
Keep checking back. We will have many more tips
to come. The more we struggle the more I depend
on the tips from the old days to get me through.
Learning to be a housewife is such an amazing
venture.
I read something the other day that said
"we have the power to make our homes heaven
or hell. That is true female power."
That statement is so true. The drastic difference
in how I kept my house and the haven it is now
amazes me daily.
It was literally the result of working thorugh the big
mess and learning to do simple things to keep it up.
It has alotted me more free time than I ever imagined.
I love how lovely my home is now. I smile when I look at
it every day.
I love the old trainings on charm and etiquette.
I wouldn't give them up for the world.
The generations of the past had so much we need.
Continue with me on a journey back in time. Rediscover
the haven a home truly can be and
simplify your life as you do.
Much love always,
Veronique

Monday, July 29, 2013

What We Do With What We Have Is Everything


I have some very dear loved ones that are always unhappy.
They came from a home in which their mother, although a perfect housewife, lived her life always wanting something more.

She had a lovely home. She was an ideal housewife.
She had a miserable marriage.



I often say we all have our own formula. Some excel at housekeeping and struggle terribly at cooking. Others can cook and their homes are nightmares. Some have lovely homes, cook decently but they aren't physically keeping themselves up and it's hurting them. Sadly, many struggle with marriage and even more with finances.
I can guarantee that if you struggle in housekeeping, finances, fashion or cooking, you probably have some marital problems.
This woman surprisingly was on top of so much.
Yet, she had a sister who married rich.
Her entired life, she was envious of her sisters money. She never loved her husband. She spent so much time being unhappy with what she didn't have. They say she even mentioned an old lover her entire life to her own daughter. Continually she moaned about how much better life would have been if she had married this handsome man she had dated before their father.
One day many years later, her husband died and she met up again with this man she'd talked of for years.
He was no longer handsome. He was heavy sloppy and everything she didn't want.
She'd spend all that time longing for a man that in the end, wasn't even as lovely as her husband - a banker who had worked hard his entire life for her.
Her children have grown up with her curse.
One is one of the most striking women I have ever seen. She has a lovely home, lovely car, a husband by her side I don't know but he seems nice and I've heard her say the same, "Why do all my friends have the life I don't. They go on trips, they have nice homes and vacation times a year. Why don't I?"
Her son, the same. He has a wife that adores him completely. He has a cozy home. He seems to desire a rich life for reasons his wife can't understand. The other day he broke her heart when, after serving him homemade cobbler he started snapping at her and yelling that this wasn't the life he wanted. Her heart plummeted. She wanted to die. She loved him so dearly... why couldn't he see? They had love, good food a cozy home. Why did he long for something else? She grew up in a rich home and can't see what he's craving or why.
All three of these 'victims' miss out on so much in their life.
I believe the mother could have had such a lovely marriage... if only she could have appreciated what she had.
The strikingly beautiful woman had so much... if only she could see. And aren't vacations simply a matter of saving a few dollars here and there?
And the son....loved so dearly yet he just doesn't see. Hopefully he won't die realizing that what he longed for was nothing and the wife who loved him was everything.

Like I mentioned, we each have a formula.
We all struggle in some areas. There isn't a soul that doesn't have the opportunity to love and make the most of what they have. Even worse, the things you struggle with, you 'will' pass on to your children.
If you don't teach your children to love and care for others or keep their home, guess where you will be spending your last years? That's right. In a messy home with and unloving daughter.
What relationships are you neglecting in pursuit of 'things' that don't matter.
What did God give you that you aren't enjoying to the fullest?
All of us have the ability to love truly, and take sublime care of that which we do have.
And the saying does hold true.
"he who cares for what he has will be given more. he who neglects what he has will lose even that."
There is a law in nature that runs true.
When you begin to lovingly care for your belongings... for your loved ones and for everything in your care, live begins to blossom around you. It becomes breathtakingly beautiful.
Whether you are in a mud hut or an enchanting home, the true test of satisfaction in your home is how YOU decide to care for it.
It can be an empty mansion cold and icy or it can be warm and loving. You can nuture and feed your loved ones. You can treasure and love your husband. You can delicately care for your home and yard. You can take the food God gave you and create lovely meals. 
Your mud hut can be a source of misery or the cosiest most loving hut around. You can fill it with warmth and love. You can tenderly care for it and you can still choose to make your family the happiest there is.
 
We can all pick random fruit trees and create delightful meals. We can all pick wildflowers. We can all fall in love and even on the most stringent budget, we can all affort a few things to beautify our appearance.
What you have in your possesion can be beautiful. That choice, my dear, is yours.
I remember when I made the change in my own life.
I had let it get pretty bad for a while. I was depressed. I can't remember why. I believe it was due to love.
I didn't get messy because I was dirty. I got messy because I just quit feeling well enough to lift a finger.
My life became so dark and sad.
The cleaning wasn't easy. It didn't happen overnight. It took effort every day for a time. Each day I would make it my goal to clean up any messes that day along with cleaning up a little more.
I made sure I didn't create any new messes left uncleaned as I continued to work through the messes that had piled up so terribly.
When it's beauty began to emerge, I cried.

All along, it was lovely underneath.
I had missed out on such a lovely home for such a time.
You don't have to any longer.
Underneath your clutter is a lovely home.
Underneath that heartache is a lovely soul.
Begin today to pick up a little at a time. Care for what you have tenderly.
Love it dearly.
Let it's beauty emerge.
As you do, life will bring more beauty your way. The more you take care of what you have, the more ready you are for more.
I'll be brutal. If you aren't caring well for your small home, you definitely don't need anything bigger.
You likely have what you can handle at this time. Learn from it. Learn to care for it well.
Learn to master your ability to care for what you have and then, my dear, you will be ready for more.
You can do it.
I believe in you.
Much love,
Veronique

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Learning To Resist Criticism and Continue On Your Path

There are two types of people in this world.
Those who are pursuing their dreams and making the changes they desire in their life
And those who resent the achievers.
Beware the second group.
Not only to we get comfortable in our current (even if undesired) "routines"
Those around us are comfortable with us as we are as well.
When we change, we disrupt 'their' routine.
A housewife that suddenly starts keeping house WILL encounter resistance from those she lives with for a time.
The woman who begins to dress stylishly WILL encounter resistance in the form of gossip, people discouraging her from dressing up..etc.
You may even discover a jealous friend in the group.
Look at all the horrible insults celebrities like Kim Kardashian have to face every day simply for being lovely
 
Everything we do affects others.
While having a messy home and looking frumpy is NOT better for them OR you, they will still have to go through the change/disruption in their current comfort as well as you.
Be ready for it.
Make it pleasing for them.
Be lovely in your response. Their gossip will not carry weight if you remain lovely in your composure and response.
Be hurt, be angry but don't sin in response. Maintain composure and maintain love.
Above all else, be strong enough to carry on while maintaining compassion for their plight.
Even better, show them how to break out of their rut as well.
After all if you went to work one day to find that plain Jane had turned into foxy roxy, especially if you had a crush on a guy there, it would be a bit intimidating for you as well.
These people will try to overcome their intimidation...not by striving to be as good as you, rather, they will try to pull you back to the way they were comfortable.
Be ready for comments.
Even my dear love, when I began to make change would subtly make comments that tempted me to give up.
I learned that yes, I would feel the emotions from those comments and it was okay. The change was just making him uncomfortable for a time as well.
The thing you must learn to do with criticism is NOT let it change your plans or defeat your ambition. Keep going.
Don't let the sadness cause you to give up... keep going.
Don't live your life to avoid negative comments from others. If you are doing actions you don't want to and avoiding actions you desire, see if others are the problem.
Many of you dress less stylish than you'd desire because you're afraid of the comments if you actually dressed up.
Many of you are afraid to make that first meal because you fear the comments if you mess up.
Many of you stay in your rut because you're afraid.
Don't be.
You are letting everyone around you decide what you are.
You are a slave to their insecurities.
Be who YOU desire to be.
Don't ever be 'less' to keep the peace.
When you are everything you can be, they will profit from it as well.
You will be lovely, enchanting and have lovely food and accommodations.
They 'will' come around.
Some may resent you for the long haul. Just keep being you.
Don't let it phase you.
The changes are worth it I promise ;)
Keep in your mind what you desire to be and be aware of when others are influencing you.
Stick to your plan.
Stand strong.
Don't let them decide who YOU are.
That choice, my dear, is yours. ;)
You don't have to live in your rut any longer.
You can begin today to make change. Change that is lovely.
Much love always,
Veronique
 
 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Who's Holding Your Money

For years, money was my biggest struggle.
I tended to see it like we see tokens at an amusement park as a child.
I was so used to having a lack that when I got it, I wanted everything.
I would eagerly think of all of the things I'd been lacking.
My 'hunger' for things, food, fun got the best of me.
 
Sadly, I would not have what was necessary to survive on.
Responsibilities, necessities etc would take it all up so I would put them off until I got the 'fun' in.
 
The bad thing is, my health, my home, everything became a mess in the meantime.
Having money for a sandwich but not for healthcare only hurts you in the end.
 
 
For those of us like me, it just takes a little growing up. That little girl in us was never taught how to budget or save money. We just need a little training.
 
Begin today to write down the things that you 'need' to pay for to have a cozy safe life.
Consider:
food
shelter
medical needs
necessary clothing
bills
the needs of those you care for
 
 
Then as a treat, alot a small portion approx. 10% for something fun for you as a reward
Set aside another 10% for savings.
 
No matter what you do. Do not spend that savings. I want it to be your secret treasure.
Your only job is to keep it safe. You will thank me for this one day.
Now write this down on a card and keep it in your billfold. In front of your credit cards.
Do not spend most of your money for treasures... just make sure to make the 10% something you will love enough not to crave anything else.
 
I find that many people do one or the other:
-they over budget and never alot for fun
-they hate restrictions and try to ignore their existence spending ONLY on fun.
 
You are going to do neither.
I 'want' you to have fun.
I want you to enjoy life
I want you to have treats and rewards.
On that card write things you want to see, clothes you want to buy, food you want to eat.. any luxuries you crave.
 
Now when you set aside that 10% buy a little treat right away. But make sure you review that list each time you are paid. If you want to spend a little on a snack or treat. Save the rest for the larger items you desire. Keep that money paper clipped to your card. Don't steal from your fun bank and don't spend it early.
 
Definitely don't steal from your needs or savings.
Budgeting doesn't take a whole lot of skill.
It just takes an ability to understand 'why' you are saving/setting aside.
 
It also requires that you do a lot 'some' for fun. :)
No matter how past due you are. You can have that one treat. If you starve yourself, you'll start to rebel. So enjoy your treat. You worked hard. Then make sure to take care of your needs now and in the future. Pay your necessities and save for your future.
There is nothing worse than having nothing.
Money is scary.
I've seen too many go from having much, to nothing.
 
Not paying those necessities or your savings can hurt you.
I don't want to see you there.
If you are there, you can escape. Just begin today where you are.
 
You can do it.
I believe in you
Much love,
Veronique.
 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

One of The Lovliest Aspects of Being Feminine

One of the most enjoyable aspects of being female is the amazing grace and charm we can develop.
I absolutely do not believe in vanity but when you learn charm, grace, elegance, refinement and eloquence the effect is absolutely enchanting.
 
Like decorating your home or a cake or a plate, learning to decorate and artistically express yourself through fashion and charm can become truly amazing. You, as a woman, are created with a delicate feminine charm all your own. Like learning to walk, it takes a bit of training in mannerisms and expression but once you catch on, you will discover your own unique beauty. Your lovely handwriting in the field of grace and charm.
 
Women were once put through charm schools. They learned posture, diet, weight management. They learned how to walk, sit, speak move. They learned what to eat and not to eat. They learned how to dress for their figure and wear their hair for their face shape.
They delighted in it.
 
And do you know what? The men found these women so amazing, they put on their best to earn their attention. Watch it in your daily life. Watch how a woman with training in grace and sophistication will cause the men around her to tip their hats, hold doors and act more gentlemanly almost as a second nature.
Instead of being Rosanne and telling your husband "well you're no Carey Grant." Try being Audrey Hepburn instead and watch with delight as your man actually becomes civilized to earn your honor.
Men are enchanted with a delicate composed woman. Does it come naturally at first....no. But not because it isn't who we are. Our culture has hardened us. We have concealed our inner selves. Deep inside we are soft and delicate. As you let your guard down and learn to let your expressive side out, it will show more and more.

Your femininity will start to show in your attire

Your Posture

Your mannerisms

Your soul

Men will be enchanted

and you will feel more like yourself than you ever have.
Not only that, love will be amazing and true.
Learn to discover your lost femininity.
Rediscover your feminine side.
Dress as you truly desire.
Stand up straight, glide, speak softly.
Let yourself love art and nature.
Discover the femininity in you.
 
 
It amazes me how much my man responds when I do. Not only do I feel more authentic, I am amazed at the change in him.
He holds doors, his eyes meet mine longer with a searching longing stare.
Everything starts to fall into place.
Yes women have the ability to do many great things. The sad part is, we've let go of the areas where we shine the most.
Reclaim them and rediscover the lost beauty of femininity.
 
Much love always,
Veronique