Fast and Easy Peach Freezer Jam

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easy peach freezer jam recipe

If you’ve read my blog for any length of time you pretty much know I LOVE canning. Seriously, I could move to an island where all they did was can all day, and I would be totally happy.

Just give me  a little sugar, some fruit and a couple of jars and I’m good. But sometimes I don’t always have time to whip out the canner and go through the whole hot water bath canning process so I cheat and make freezer jam instead.

This peach freezer jam took all of about 10 minutes to make. It was that easy! I kid you not.

So what are you waiting for? Go find some peaches and make some jam.

fresh peaches

Ingredients

2 pounds fresh peaches, peeled, pitted and chopped
1 1/3 cups of sugar
4 tablespoons Ball Real Fruit Instant Pectin

peach freezer jam

Directions

Place your peeled, pitted and chopped peaches in a blender and puree {or with a potato masher} and set aside.

peach freezer jam recipe

In a separate bowl, stir the sugar and pectin together. Slowly add fruit and whisk together for 3 minutes until all the ingredients are incorporated.

easy peach freezer jam

Pour peach jam mixture in to freezable containers making sure to leave at least 1/2 inch headspace to allow for the liquid to expand once in the freezer. Let jam stand 30 minutes before placing containers in the freezer.

This recipe makes 8 cups of peach freezer jam.

blue jam cookbook
A few of my favorite canning books:

The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook
Food in Jars: Preserving in Small Batches Year-Round
Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving
Put ‘em Up!: A Comprehensive Home Preserving Guide
Tart and Sweet: 101 Canning and Pickling Recipes for the Modern Kitchen

See More of my Canning Recipes HERE

Need a canner? I used the Granite Ware 11-1/2 Quart Covered Preserving Canner with Rack. And if you need a tool kit, I use one similar to this one.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.



Monthly Garden Chores – July

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Monthly Garden Chores - July

Holy cannoli’s people… can you believe it’s July already? This year is flying by and the weather here in Western Washington has been perfect for gardening lately. Hot and muggy pretty much sums it up if you ask me. ;)

We are almost done harvesting strawberries for the season and are looking forward to the next best thing… RASPBERRIES. Wahooo! Gardening is rad, isn’t it?

cabbage seeds

Seeds I’m Starting Indoors this Month

  • Broccoli Raab {time to get ready for the fall garden!}
  • Spinach
  • Cabbage
  • Broccoli
  • Kale
  • Kohlrabi
  • Cauliflower

See the full list of seeds I’ll be planting this year

What I Plan to Transplant Outside this Month

Everything is already outside this month.  I plan on just watering and watching it all grow. :)

bucket of raspberries

What I plan to Harvest This Month

  • Strawberries
  • Lettuce
  • Peas
  • Cucumbers
  • Basil
  • Oregano
  • Beans
  • Thyme
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Kale
  • Mint
  • Onions
  • Baby Red Potatoes
  • Raspberries
  • Sun Gold Tomatoes
  • Zucchini

sun gold tomatoes

Trees and Shrubs

Trees and shrubs should be pretty low maintenance this month, other than needing a bit more water.  All trees and shrubs benefit from deeper, less frequent waterings, rather than a daily light sprinkle.  Watch for pests, fungus, and diseases this month and stop them before they take hold.  Mulching is important this month.  It will help your plants deal with the stress of the heat.

slugs eating cabbage

Weed and Pest Control

Weeding is especially important this month, because weeds will compete in your garden beds for valuable nutrients.  Continue to keep an eye on pests, especially on the tomatoes.

lawn mowing tips

Lawn Care

Try raising the blade on your mower this month.  The longer cut grass will protect the roots of the grass from the heat.

These garden chores are based on my Zone 8a Seattle/Tacoma WA location. Find your garden zone HERE.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

How to Dye a Comforter Set Using a Front Load Washing Machine and Rit Liquid Dye

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How to Dye a Comforter Set Using Rit Liquid Dye

About 9 years ago I picked up 2 comforter sets from Pottery Barn for a screaming bargain. One for our bedroom and one for The Girl Who Thinks She’s a Bird.

dyeing a comforter with rit liquid dyd

Fast forward to 9 years later and my daughter is no longer into the whole lime green and white color scheme anymore so I decided to try and dye it using Rit Liquid Dye rather than trying to sell it at our next garage sale for $20 bucks. I wasn’t totally convinced it was going to work but I took the plunge …. and I’m so glad I did.

Front Load Washing Machine and Rit Liquid Dye

For this experiment I used 6 bottles of Rit Liquid Dye and settled on Denim Blue Dye.   There was 1 queen sized comforter and 2 shams {the comforter weighed 7 pounds and the shams 1.5 pounds each}.  Rit does not recommend dying more than 8 pounds at a time, so I split it them all up.   I was nervous about if this was going to work or not, so I dyed 1 sham with 1 bottle of dye first and it worked brilliantly so I continued dyeing the rest of the pieces.  It was a total up-cycle.

Front Load Washing Machine and Rit Liquid Dye

To dye the set, first I washed the quilt and 2 shams thoroughly and let them dry.

Like I said, I started with one sham.  I followed the directions to a T, since I’d never done it before.  I started by wetting the sham in hot water and then put it in the machine, carefully laying it in there so that the fabric wasn’t wrinkled as best I couls.  I set the water to hot and picked a cycle I knew would last longer than 30 minutes {if you don’t have that option, you’ll want to stay close by reset the wash cycle a couple of times}.

Dye a Comforter Set Using a Front Load Washing Machine and Rit Liquid Dye

Before pouring the dye, I shook the bottle to mix it well.  Then, I carefully poured the dye into the detergent dispenser.  The dye can potentially stain plastic parts of your washer, so RIT recommends flushing the dispenser with 4 cups of HOT water after adding the dye {I didn’t have any problems though}.

After about 10 minutes, I added a mixture of 1 cup dissolved salt and 4 cups HOT water into the dispenser.  That was the directions for dyeing cotton–if you are dying silk or nylon, you want to use vinegar instead of salt.  Again, I flushed the dispenser with another 4 cups of hot water.

Rit Dye Front Loader Quilt{Before going into the dryer}

Then, I just let the washing machine do all of the work.  After the cycle was over, I repeated the process for the other sham.  Then, I tackled the comforter, using the exact same method, only with the comforter, I used 4 bottles of Rit.

Front Load Washing Machine and Rit Liquid Dye quilt{All dry!}

When it was all said and done, I tossed everything into the dryer and worked on cleaning the washing machine by running 2 cups of bleach through the hottest cycle possible with a couple of old towels in the machine {just like the bottle suggested}.  It worked great and my washing machine looks none the worse for wear.

How to Dye a Comforter Set Using a Front Load Washing Machine and Rit Liquid Dye

The comforter set looks brand new!  And, the whole thing cost me under $25.  Now, I am combing my house looking for other items to dye.  It might become a problem. :)

Have you ever dyed anything with Rit Dye before?

Mavis wants to know!

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

How I Feed My Family for $100 a Month – Week 26 of 52

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QFC Shopping trip

QFC $13.11

QFC had some great deals this week including a Buy 6 and Save special so I went ahead and picked up pasta for $.49 a box, Ragu pasta sauce for $1.49 a jar and Minute Maid orange juice for just $1.99 a bottle. Those are some pretty good prices if you ask me.

I also snagged a whole chicken and made 2 dinners out of it. 1 roasted chicken dinner and a pot of homemade chicken soup the next night. :)

red cherries

Albertsons $6.63

Cherries! I couldn’t resist!! Luckily I won’t be shelling out too much money for fruit this summer because our raspberry and blueberry patches are loaded but cherries and peaches? Heck ya I’m going to grab them when I find a good deal.smith brothers farm

Smith Brother’s Milk Delivery – Sponsored

Milk. It does a body good. ;) Having milk delivered is AWESOME, there’s no doubt about it and luckily we are in an area where we can get it delivered to our doorstep once a week from a local farm. Pretty stinkin’ rad if you ask me.

How about you? How did you do at the stores this week?

Now that summer is in full swing, are you going to the grocery store less and less because of all the yummy fruits and vegetables you’re harvesting from you garden? If so, what are you harvesting this week?

Mavis wants to know.

Total Spent This Week $19.74
Total Spent This Year $930.62
Total Spent This Year on Garden Seeds/Supplies $38.98

Go HERE to read more Shopping Trip Stories.

Smith Brothers Farms Logo

One Hundred Dollars a Month is proudly sponsored by Smith Brother’s Farms, my family’s favorite milk. Check out their website HERE and learn about the over 100 top quality products Smith Brothers Farms can deliver to your porch box.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Free Kindle Books, Kitchen Tools, Born Sandals, Coupons, Science Deals for Kids and More

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mavis butterfield sheila the rock

Good morning from Victoria B.C.! The Girl Who Thinks She’s a Bird, her bff Pocahontas and I got up at the crack of dawn to make the 2 hour drive to catch the Coho Ferry from Port Angeles to Victoria yesterday and so far we are having a blast. We even brought our pet rock Shelia along. ;)

Yesterday day we logged almost 10 miles walking around the city and were headed off to do the same today. We LOVE this city!!!

Have a great day everyone and I’ll tell you all about it when we get back.

Mavis

deals on make up

Amazon Gold Box Deal of the Day - Up to 45% Off Select Beauty Products

free kindle books

Available Kindle Books I think are cool…

The prices on Kindle Books can change quickly, so grab them while you can.

deals on kitchen toolsHere are a few deals on Kitchen Tools:

make-your-own-hummingbird-nectar

Did you know it’s super duper easy to make you’re own hummingbird nectar? Find out how to make this DIY Humming Bird Nectar HERE. Find more cool projects on my DIY Pinterest Board.

Born Tai Sandals

REI Outlet Deal of the Day - Woman’s Born Tai Sandals $46.73

tide-laundry-detergent-picIs your washing machine working overtime washing all those beach towels? Hurry and print a coupon good for  $1.50 off ONE (1) Tide Detergent before they run out.

science deals

Do your kiddos like science? Here are a few educational deals:

popular science magazine

Discount Mags is offering a 1 year subscription to Popular Science Magazine for only $4.99 a year when you use code MAVIS at checkout. This deal will expire tonight 7/7/14 at midnight EST so be sure and grab your subscription before then.

How-to-Make-Homemade-Peanut-Butter2

This homemade peanut butter recipe is freakin amazing. Get the recipe HERE or Pin it for Later. Find more recipes on my Pinterest Recipe Board.

keurig machine

Groupon has the Keurig Vue V600 Brewing System with 58 Assorted V-Cups on sale for $99.99 shipped right now. Amazon is selling the same machine without the cups for $115 shipped.

party favors

Having a party this summer? Here are a few deals on party favors:

angel soft

Get 48 Double Rolls of Angel Soft Toilet Paper for just $19.84 shipped when you clip the $1.00 off coupon and use the subscribe and save option at checkout.

international delight iced coffee

Check out these New Printable Coupons:

Find More Printable Coupons

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Weekly Meal Plan – Menu Plan Ideas Week 26 of 52

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menu plan ideas

Even though I don’t make a weekly menu plan, I still love the idea of having a bunch of recipes right in front of me to choose from. Here are a few recipes from my recipe collection I thought you might like:

Raisin-Bran-Muffins-recipe

Breakfast Ideas 

Raisin Bran Muffins - Regularity, my friends.  Regularity.  {Pin for Later}
Vanilla Pear Coffee Cake - Cake in the title.  What more could you want.  {Pin for Later}
Homemade Scones – I like these because you can personalize them with your favorite jams.  {Pin for Later}
Chocolate Crepes with Bananas – If you have summer guests headed your directions, trust me, these will wow them.  {Pin for Later}

Slow Cooker Pear & Ginger ApplesauceSlow Cooker  and Freezer Meal Ideas

Crock Pot Steel Cut Oatmeal with Apples and Brown Sugar – Have kids on swim team or some other early morning summer activity?  This is the perfect solution to a healthy breakfast that is ready when you wake up.  {Pin for Later}
Chili Verde Soup - This is soooo yummy.  Throw some salty tortilla chips on the side and you will have a happy, happy belly.  {Pin for Later}
Slow Cooker Pear & Ginger Applesauce – This makes an awesome mid-day snack.  Let the kids put a dollop of whipping cream on the top and call it dessert.  {Pin for Later}
Freezer Meal Breakfast Burritos – These are awesome for camping.  Make ‘em at home and then throw them in the cooler to warm up in the mornings.  {Pin for Later}

Tuna Salad Recipe with Lemon, Cucumbers and CarrotsSoups , Salads and Main Dish Ideas

Tuna Salad w/Lemon, Cucumbers and Carrots – This is awesomely light and scrumptious on a hot day.  {Pin for Later}
Roasted Beet Salad with Oranges and Walnuts – If you don’t love beets, seriously, try this recipe.  It just might change your mind.  {Pin for Later}
Pasta Salad with Green Beans, Tomatoes and Roasted Peppers – This is another light weeknight meal that is sure to please.  {Pin for Later}
Butternut Squash with Spinach and Pasta – I made this for Thanksgiving this year, and it has quickly become a staple in our house as a yummy main dish.  {Pin for Later}

sun dried tomatoesCookies,  Snacks and Desserts

Old Fashioned Apple Crisp – Nothin’ more summer timey than apple crisp.  {Pin for Later}
Sun Dried Tomatoes – Tomatoes are starting showing up in the stores {ones that are actually ripe} and it’s time to start thinking about how you’re going to use up all of those you are growing :)  {Pin for Later}
Creme Brule – Creme Brule on a summer’s day.  It just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?  {Pin for Later}
Grilled Peaches – These smell AMAZING on the BBQ, and they taste even better.  They are a dessert all by themselves.  {Pin for Later}

apricot jam recipeCanning Recipe of the Week

Apricot Jam – I love this jam–it’s sweet and delicious, and you don’t have to deal with any seeds.  {Pin for Later}

What are YOU planning on making this week?

~Mavis

Looking for more recipes? Check out my recipes boards on Pinterest

Also, be sure to check out:

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Those Pesky Expiration Dates…

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Expiration Dates

Is it just me, or is Europe always on the forefront of food quality and standards?  I ran across an article the other day that covered the European Union’s latest attempt to reduce food waste by loosening up the standards on certain “best by” dates on foods.  The EU is pushing to allow more foods {that store indefinitely, just with lower quality, not safety} to become exempt from “best by” dates.  They predict that it could lower food waste  as much as 15 million tons {holy buckets!}.  The EU has already passed the ruling that vinegar, sugar, and salt will no longer carry “best by” dates, as they are preserving agents.  Items like rice and coffee are up next on the list.

Here in the US, our expiration dates and best by dates are a little more fast and loose.  They are not regulated, and so there is no real standard on how long non-perishables are safe to consume.  I know I personally consume them long after the “best by” date, and I have never had a problem.

Critics of the “best by” dates on food say that it leads to consumer confusion, as in most consumers don’t know that it doesn’t mean that food has gone bad, it just means the quality might begin to decline {think texture, color, etc.}, and so food is wasted unnecessarily.

You know me, I am all about any steps that we can take to reduce food waste.  What do you think, would you like to see the U.S. adopt the E.U.’s pending policies on food dates?  What is your policy on “best by” dates when you are cleaning out your pantry?

~Mavis

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Mavis Answers Your Burning Questions

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ask mavis

One of my favorite things about this blog is all of the comments people leave and the sense of community we have. I really believe I have some of the most amazing readers out there. But somehow I’ve tricked you into thinking I’m totally smarter than I am. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve been around the block a time or two so I know a bit about gardening and a thing or two about frugal living and becoming more self-reliant. But all that knowledge was gained because of some serious trial and error, so I try to share as much as I can to keep you guys from having to go through it yourselves. Essentially I’m Mavis the Guinea Pig. You’re welcome.

Recently, I spotted a few comments on the One Hundred Dollars a Month Facebook page as well as my Mavis Hotline. I’m going to attempt to answer them, but I’m also asking all my lovely readers to take a look at the questions and chime in. I can guarantee the readers that asked these questions would appreciate all you smarty pants out there taking a shot at them. I mean if two heads are better than one, than hundreds of heads will probably churn out some genius answers. No pressure. And go…

wonder grip gloves for kids

Mavis, I thought maybe you or your readers might be able to help. I’m trying to find some gardening gloves for my toddler. She’s almost two, and everything we’ve found that says “toddler” would fit a 10 year old! Do you know of anywhere that sells them?

~Tara

It’s been a long time since I’ve had toddlers helping me in the garden, so I asked around. I have a friend who said these Wonder Grip Nicely Nimble gloves are great for toddlers because they come in x-small and xx-small. Hope that helps!

green beans

Hi Mavis, I just discovered your blog and I am very interested in growing food for my family. I started a garden this year, about 80 square feet and so far I have lots of healthy tomatoes, peppers, carrots and beans. I would be very interested to hear more about your daily routine in your garden so that I can gauge just how much time it would take to grow so much food. Thanks for sharing!

~Olivia

This is such a hard question because I’ve been all over the map. I’ve had years {like when I was trying to grow 2 tons of food!} when I spent at least a few hours a day in my garden. It can consume you and run your life if you let it. But if it’s something you love, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s just about striking a balance, which I’ve done this year. I have a great garden, but it doesn’t feel like a full-time job.

I spend about 5-6 hours a week in the garden. That also changes depending on the season. Sometimes it will require a full day of weeding, planting, hauling, etc., and other times I’ll go a week or two without stepping foot in my garden. Then, of course, you’ll have the occasional weekend project where I’ll spend all weekend getting a project done, but those are few and far between.

How much time it requires obviously depends on how much you want to grow. The more plants and the more variety, the more time your garden will take. Seriously though, it’s the most rewarding work. So keep at it!

Adding Chickens into Your Existing Flock

Howdy! I’m wondering how you merge your new chicks with older flock. I have a 15 week old Dark Brahma that is in a 6×8 dog kennel retro chicken pen. Also have separate in a chicken tractor about 4-6 feet away, 6 Rhode Island Reds that are 7 weeks. We will be finished with my new chicken coop (8×8 shed with 300 sq ft fenced in pen). Should I merge them together at the same time since they would have technically an even playing field neither have been to yet. What’s you thoughts.

~Terri

Would there be anyway you could put them in the new pen but separate them by chicken wire or something for the first week {or maybe they are close enough to see each other now?}. Allowing chickens to see each other and grow accustomed to each other without allowing them to attack would really help the integration process. If not, you’d probably still be okay throwing them in together into the new coop. I suspect the timing would be great because they’ll all be so distracted by their new surroundings, they’ll be less focused on finding a new pecking order!

10-Homemade-Cleaner-Recipes

Mavis, have you ever made your own liquid dish soap? I’m looking for a recipe that works really well and is inexpensive to make.

~Coleen

That is one I haven’t tried, but I’m certainly hoping one of my awesome readers has and can share an amazing recipe that puts Dawn to shame. Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

salt creek beach dana point california

I would like to buy your blog. How much will you sell it to me for? 

~Omar

Oh dear, sweet Omar. This blog, these readers, and the community we built here is not for sale. Unless of course you’re offering like 50 million dollars or something. In which case, where do I sign?

hen and chicks

I was wondering if you could help me with this. I found some Hens & chicks in my garden, I also re-potted them and was wondering how to take care of them over the winter time?

~Lisa

Hens and chicks are some of the hardiest plants out there. They can survive pretty harsh winters and snowfall {unlike me}. I think anything zone 3 or higher and you can keep them outside. The two things I know will kill them is too much moisture and not enough sunlight.

I wouldn’t water them at all if there is rain/snowfall periodically. They need the soil to dry out slightly between waterings. They also need as much sun as possible, so if you have them near anything that could potentially block the sun, relocate them! They should survive the winter just fine then.

And now it’s your turn. If you know the answers to these burning questions, or of you have some insider information, please share. Sharing is caring. Also, you guys are the best!

Peace Out Girl Scouts,

Mavis

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Strawberries and Cream Baked Oatmeal

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Strawberries and Cream Baked Oatmeal

Growing up, The Girl loved the Quaker Strawberries ‘n Cream Instant Oatmeal. I admit it was a super easy breakfast to whip up, and in the height of my couponing days, I could get boxes of the stuff for next to nothing. But as I’ve tried over the last few years to feed my family a little bit healthier, I knew I needed to revamp a better-for-you version of her favorite morning meal.

Not only is this recipe crazy good, it’s made with ingredients I can actually pronounce. There really is something to be said about that!

strawberries

Ingredients

2 cups old fashioned oats
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups heavy cream
1 large egg
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups sliced strawberries

Strawberries and Cream Baked Oatmeal

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease an 8 x 8 baking pan and set aside.

In a large bowl mix together oats, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.

In a separate bowl, whisk together heavy cream, egg, butter and vanilla. Pour wet mixture over oat mixture and stir until incorporated. Stir in 1 cup sliced strawberries. Transfer to prepared baking dish and top with remaining strawberries.

Bake about 35-40 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm and enjoy.

Strawberries and Cream Baked Oatmeal

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Gardening is RAD!

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mavis-butterfield-in-the-garden- (1)

Is it just me, or is gardening just about the coolest hobby on the planet? I mean really, what other hobby can you invest a few bucks in that gives you so much in return? Check out my latest eHow article on the topic: Top 5 Reasons Why You Should Start Gardening

Have a great weekend everyone!

Mavis

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Recipes Garden Frugal Canning Chickens Travel