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Category: Series

4 Weeks of Frugal Family Fun: Edible Peanut Butter Playdough (Day 2)

Kathrynne woke up with a fever today. So much of my day was spent caring for her — and much of the other normal stuff just got shelved. By late afternoon, she was finally feeling a little better, so Kaitlynn and Silas and I let her rest while we stole away to the kitchen to make peanut butter playdough.

Kaitlynn and Silas had a lot of fun helping me mix up the playdough and then I gave them each a ball of dough and a few toppings on a plate plus a cookie sheet and let them just have at it. They had a lot of fun making their own creations and pictures with the playdough on the cookie sheet.

And then they had even more fun bringing it to show Kathrynne and then all eating their creations together.

The whole project was simple, very inexpensive (we just used ingredients we already had on hand!), and easy to clean up. After the Flubber mess, the fact that I didn’t have to spend quite a bit of time scrubbing goo off the walls and the kitchen table after we were finished was a bit of a welcome relief. 🙂

Did you do something fun and frugal as a family today? If you blogged about it, I’d love for you to leave a link to your blog post below. Or, you can just tell us what you did in the comments.

Note: There seems to be some confusion as to what to link up with this series. Since the purpose of this series is to encourage you to be intentional about fun in your home this summer, please only link up posts showing pictures/sharing details of fun things you did as a family today (or within the last few days). Posts that do not adhere to these guidelines will be deleted in order to make it fair for those who are putting forth a lot of effort to participate in this challenge.

4 Weeks of Frugal Family Fun: Homemade Flubber (Day 1)

We kicked off our 4 Weeks of Frugal Family Fun series by making Homemade Flubber.

In case you’re scratching your head wondering what I’m talking about, “Flubber” originated from Disney’s 1961 film The Absent-Minded Professor (I’m not sure that I’ve even seen the movie, but I’m familiar with the storyline!).

My children were totally stoked about this project. Getting to play with slimy goop? Yes, please, bring it on!

They were highly motivated to finish their chores and to-do lists for the day in order to get make Flubber (or “icky” as Silas dubbed it!) And they all loved making it.

Our first batch flopped because we didn’t completely dissolve the glue in the water. But we still got some slimy goo from it that children thought was very cool.

The second batch actually looked like it was supposed to. And everyone had a blast playing with it.

The only problem was that 3-year-old Silas got a little “into “it and started flinging it on the wall and letting it drip all down the front of him.

So my advice to you moms is: if you decide to try this recipe, do it during naptime or when your really young ones are otherwise occupied. Or, let them play with it outside in old play clothes and then let everyone have a water fight afterward to clean themselves off. 🙂

Did you do something fun and frugal as a family today? If you blogged about it, I’d love for you to leave a link to your blog post below. Or, you can just tell us what you did in the comments.

4 Weeks to Fill Your Freezer: Freezer-Friendly Chocolate Banana Bread (Day 20)

This Chocolate Banana Bread is SO delicious and easy to whip up! Plus, it freezes great!

We made it to Day 20 — woohoo! If you’ve followed along and joined me in any or all of the daily freezer cooking challenges, you deserve a huge congratulations for making it this far.

Chocolate Banana Bread is usually really simple to whip up. But it took me longer than usual this time around.

First off, I mixed the dry ingredients together and got ready to add the cocoa only to discover we had no cocoa. I was confused as to why on earth this chocolate-loving family would be out of cocoa — especially since I was sure we had just had a full container.

Then I remembered…

…A few weeks ago when I was baking something with Silas, I left the kitchen table where we were working to go get something from the refrigerator. I got sidetracked doing something else in the kitchen for a minute and forgot to pay attention to what was happening at the kitchen table. Big mistake.

Needless to say, when I came back, I found that he had managed to spill the entire contents of the cocoa container out on my kitchen table. And yes, I had to take a picture to document it as I’m sure we’ll be looking back at these things some day and laughing quite heartily about all of his epic messes . 🙂

At any rate, I had to make a quick trip to Walmart to get some more cocoa. I figured Walmart would have a good price on some generic brand of cocoa.Wrong. I discovered that Walmart only stocks Hershey’s or Tollhouse (what’s with that?!), so I paid a whopping $2.58 for a canister of cocoa and tried again to make the bread.

Then, I discovered that my camera card was missing and when you’re supposed to blog about a cooking adventure, a camera card is sort of important seeing as a recipe post without pictures is kind of dull. 🙂

Where oh where could the camera card be? I searched high and low — only to finally find it in the load of clean laundry in the dryer. I had stuck it in the pocket of my jeans the day before and it made it through the washer and dryer unscathed. Hey at least it wasn’t buried at the bottom of the freezer like my camera cap!

Finally, I was able to get the recipe finished!

4 Weeks to Fill Your Freezer: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins (Day 19)

Ready for fall baking? These pumpkin chocolate chip muffins are a winner!!

This recipe is one of our longtime family favorites. These muffins are so good and freeze so well.

These also make a great dessert to add to a sack lunch. Just pull a frozen muffin out and stick it in a baggie in your sack lunch and by lunchtime, it’s all thawed and ready to eat.

If you want to try a bit of a different and healthier twist, The Frugal Girl remade this recipe using sweet potatoes, whole-wheat flour, and less oil.

Did you do any freezer cooking today? If so, I’d love to see the results of your efforts! Link up your blog posts below or tell us about your success in the comments.

4 Weeks to Fill Your Freezer: Homemade Energy Bites (Day 18)

Craving a filling snack? These homemade energy bites are delicious, adaptable, packed with nutrition, and freezer-friendly!

So, I’m a day behind where I’d hoped to be, but I’m still plugging along — and can see the finish line in the very near future. Yay! And yay for a freezer full of good food!

Today’s project was making Energy Bites, a recipe I initially discovered on Smashed Peas and Carrots. This recipe is delicious, packed with nutrition, and so easily adaptable.

{Grinding the flax seeds in the coffee grinder.}

Want more make-it-from-scratch ideas? I highly recommend Easy Homemade by Mandi Ehman. This ebook contains more than 60 recipes for homemade kitchen staples and it’s beautifully laid out, well-illustrated, and packed with great ideas and recipes.

4 Weeks to Fill Your Freezer: Easy Morning Glory Muffins (Day 17)

These muffins are delicious and nutritious. When my friend, Angie, brought us some one day, I took one bite and knew they were winners.

I adapted the original recipe to make it healthier, but if you’re not worrying about sugar or calories, the original recipe is really good. 🙂

I’d recommend using muffin liners, if you buy them, as they seem to help these be a bit more moist. However, they are still delicious with less sugar and without muffin liners.

I used pureed carrots instead of shredded carrots this time around as that is what I already had in the freezer. I think it works a little better with shredded carrots — and the batter doesn’t look so orange, either!

Did you do any freezer cooking today? If so, I’d love to see the results of your efforts! Link up your blog posts below or tell us about your success in the comments.