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Cheryl's Sensible Cents - 5/15/2006 Newsletter
May 15, 2006

Did You Know?

There were more than 10 billion pennies made in 1998.

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In this Issue:

Featured Articles
Help! We've Outgrown the Penny?
Debt Free Living Choices
Reverse Mortgage
Gardening Tips for Novices and Know-it-Alls
Money Management Tips

Hillbilly Cake!
Old Fashioned Bread Pudding
Hush Puppies

Money Saving Tips

  • A great savings tip and several recycle tips
  • Alternative Uses for Common Household Items: Uses for Wax Paper
  • Grocery and Food Savings Tips
  • Readers Tips

Craft Ideas
Bottle Garden

Quotable Quote

Destiny is a name often given in retrospect to choices that had dramatic consequences - J.K. Rowling

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Featured Articles

Help! We've outgrown the penny?

What's in a penny? The true value of a penny is going up so that it is now costing the government more to make a penny than the penny is worth. According to a recent New York Times article, "the government will lose nearly half a cent on each new one [penny] it mints."

Rumor has it that they are considering eliminating the penny altogether. Well, old Ben Franklin would be in a pickle today. No pennies to save? You know, "A penny saved is a penny earned." Sorry Mr. Franklin, it seems we've outgrown that theory. Soon it appears the saying will be, "A penny saved is more than a penny spent!"... Read On

Debt Free Living Choices

Some people love to spend money. Well, I'd even be bold enough to say that nearly every human being loves to spend money. But, then there are the chronic, habitual, savers. Wish I had that problem. Or, maybe not.

I can just envision myself, pushing my wheel barrel full of pennies to the bank, or trying out for the part of Scrooge in the Christmas play. O.K., not a pretty picture. I guess compulsive saving can be just as bad as compulsive spending. A happy medium is sure to be found in debt free living... Read On

Reverse Mortgage

In the case of reverse mortgage, which is also known as a conversion mortgage, the home is used as collateral to get the cash amount. We can say that this is similar to a standard mortgage, but for reverse mortgage there are no monthly loan payments and the homeowner doesn't need an income to qualify for this kind of mortgage... Read On

Money Management Tips

Are there any secrets to consistent money management success? Are there any true get-rich-quick strategies that work for the average investor more than occasionally? While many continue to look for successful strategies that give them an edge, here’s a list of common-sense suggestions that are sure to improve any financial plan... Read On

Gardening Tips for Novices and Know-it-alls

Every gardener knows that no matter how long you've been growing your garden, there's always something new to learn. And whether you're faced with an unfamiliar garden pest or are curious what variety of green bean thrives best in your climate, the best people to learn from are other gardeners... Read On


Hillbilly Cake

This is an old family recipe that I just got my hands on! Had to share this yummy cake with you.

1 & 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 cups flour
1/2 cup melted margarine
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoons salt
1 (15-18 oz) can crushed pineapple

Mix above ingredients and pour into a greased 9x13 baking pan. Top with 1 cup brown sugar, 1 cup chopped walnuts and bake at 350 degrees F,. for 40 minutes.

Hush Puppies

2 cups white cornmeal
1 Tablespoon flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg, beaten
6 Tablespoons finely chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (0ptional)
1 1/3 cups buttermilk
2 cups lard or shortening

Combine cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in medium size mixing bowl. Stir in the egg, onion and cayenne pepper. Add buttermilk; beat well. Heat lard in heavy frying pan until hot about 375 degrees F. Drop rounded teaspoonfuls of batter into hot fat. Fry until golden brown, turning once. Drain on paper towels. Place in warm oven (250 degrees) until ready to serve. - makes 4 dozen

Old Fashioned Bread Pudding

3 baked biscuits, crumbled
2 cups milk
4 eggs, well beaten
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup melted Margarine
1 tsp, Vanilla extract

Combine all ingredients, stir well. Pourinto a 1 1/2 quart casserole. Pour 1/2 inch waterin a baking pan and place casserole in pan.Bake at 350 for one hour or until knifeinserted in center comes out clean.
Yield 6- 8 servings

Send us Your Recipes

Need ideas for dinner or recipes?

Best Home Baking: Old Farmer's Almanac Home Library -Go to Recipes & More Section
Recipe Secrets
Free Recipes at ClubMom!
Country Cooking Recipes
E-Cookbooks Library

Money Saving Tips

Share Saving Tips, Recipes, and Frugal Living Ideas.
Send in Your Readers Tips

Visit our money saving tips directory here - Save money everyday on everything you do and buy!

1. An easy way to save and earn money - If you bank at Bank of America, ask about the "Keep the Change" savings program. They automatically round up debit transactions to the next dollar and deposit the difference into your savings. For example, if you make a transaction using your debit card for $3.89, the remaining 11 cents to round it up to the next dollar is automatically deposited into your savings account. No worries, there is a safeguard so that the transaction is not made if it would cause an overdraft in checking.

They were "matching" amounts (up to $200) for limited time periods and giving 5% thereafter for new enrollees. Don't know if this promotion is still going on. But it's a great way to save without noticing and earn extra money at the same time. It has worked out well for me. I have earned my $200 due to be deposited right before Christmas time (Earnings are deposited on your annual joining anniversary). How convenient!

2. Make Giant Rubber Bands - Before discarding men's underwear, remove the elastic band. These "giant" elastic bands are great for keeping newspapers bound for recycling. The thinner bands from women's underwear can substitute for a hair band in a pinch (to make a pony tail just twist is several times) Use either one as giant rubber bands when a large rubber band is required to do a job.

3. Repair book binding with duct tape - Run tape down the length of the spine and cut shorter pieces to run across width for extra support.

4. Carpet Scraps -Use to make a cat's scratching post, floor protectors (glue small circles to bottoms of chair and table legs to prevent floor scratching), a welcome mat, and car mats.

5. Keep you child from getting lost in the crowd - Use a balloon as a child finder when traveling to theme parks, etc this summer. Tie a balloon to the child's wrist or pin to a piece of clothing. Make sure the string is long enough to float far above the crowd.

Alternative Uses for Common Household Items

Wax Paper

1. Uncork bottles - Cooking wines are often corked and uncorked several times. Wrap some wax paper around the cork before recorking and it will be easier to remove the next time.

2. Avoid scrubbing the cutting board. - When cutting meat layer 3 pieces of wax paper on the cutting board. Discard when finished and simply wipe down the board afterwards.

3. Use as a cake decorating palette. - Cut a piece of wax paper the size and shape of your cake. Instead of decorating right on the cake, use the wax paper to create your lettering, piping, etc. and place in freezer until hard enough to handle. Use a spatula to pick up or slide from wax paper to cake. If you make mistakes you can easily fix them using this method and use the perfected finished product to put on the actual cake. You'll look like a professional cake decorator every time!

4. Make a snow sled faster by rubbing the bottom with a crumpled up piece of wax paper. Good way to recycle used, but not messy, wax paper.

Grocery and Food Savings

1. Instead of a recipe file, use a photo album (the kind that pictures stick to page and then are covered with clear plastic sheet). Recipes are easy to find, easy to read, and are protected from spills and other damage.

2. Ask friends and relatives to donate cookbooks that they are not using. I've acquired several free cookbooks from family members this way.

3. No hamburger or hot dog buns? Use loaf bread instead. It's cheaper in the long run and you won't have to make a dash to the grocery store.

4. Have grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup for one nights dinner this week.

5. Don't go shopping one week and see if you can make it through the week on what food is currently in the pantry, fridge, and cupboards.

Reader's Tips

  • When I read your tips about uses for leftover pieces of linoleum in the May 1, 2006 newsletter issue, I was reminded of something I like to use leftover pieces of linoleum for. I only use the "good" linoleum (thicker, sometimes padded, with a very hardy finish), and I cut a piece large enough to cover the wall area over my cooking range. It is cheaper than some of the good backdrops, easy to keep clean, and looks so much better than the painted surface! Lasts for many years, too!
    - Anonymous
  • Use to organize any group, class, club, or activity. It is 100% free to everyone!
  • - Please share your tips

    Craft Ideas

    Your Own Bottle Garden

    You will Need:
    A balloon shaped glass bottle (like an old gallon cider bottle)
    tight fitting cork
    Handful of small washed pebbles
    Narrow cardboard tube
    some sterilized compost
    an old fork and an old spoon
    2 long sticks
    adhesive tape
    watering can w/spout
    A few, slow growing, plants (i.e. asparagus fern, begonia, slow growing ivy, lady fern)

    1. Lay bottle on side, put layer of pebbles at bottom.
    2. Stand bottle upright and using the cardboard tube as a funnel (to avoid the sides of the bottle) pour in the compost making a layer about 3 1/4 - 4 inches deep.
    3. Attach the fork and the spoon each to one of the long sticks using the adhesive tape. This will make them long enough to assit in placing plants in the bottle.
    4. Using your new tools, place plants carefully in the bottle and press down firmly into compost.
    5. Water thoroughly and place the cork in tightly. Keep in a light place but NOT in direct sunlight. You will not need to water for many months.

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