About marymargaretripley

I am a professional Bakery Manager at a privately owned grocery store. I also owned my own bakery for over four years. I have been baking for 15+ years professionally. I also teach canning and preserving classes and have been gardening since I was 5 years old. I live in Western, NY with my husband, teenage son, Bernie the Cat and Muffins the Hamster.

Not Impressed with our Debt Week 62 of 80 – Monthly Update September 2019

I was waiting until I heard about my hospital bill to update you on our debt, but so far I have heard nothing.

I took the advice of my friend Kathy and applied for a grant through the hospital.

I was reluctant to apply but in the end I got all of the paperwork together and filled out the application and handed it to my friend in the billing department and now I am waiting for them to review it.

August was a wash for us financially. What I paid off in debt we spent on our trip to Ireland for our daughter’s wedding. I am fine with that actually. I wash is good in my mind.

September was school taxes so $1500 went to that.

October is looking more promising. I have a plan to pay off our Bank of America credit card which has $2000 on it at the moment. At the end of this month I can let you in on how and if I get it all paid.

Here is how our debt is looking at this point:

Last update our total owed was $32,080.81.

Right now our total is $32,647.05.

That’s a little over $500 increase but like I said between Ireland (which was lovely!) and school taxes I am not surprised.

Back on track for October!

How are you doing with your debt? -MM

 

 

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20 for ’20 Goals Update

I started my 20 for ’20 challenge early, inspired by a friend’s goals in another group I belong to. I didn’t want to wait until the new year to start getting things accomplished.

Here is what I have accomplished so far:

1. Build a new garage – So far my hubby and I have been trying to look at every angle to this project. Do we truly want to tear down our old garage? Could we salvage it? Could we update it and slowly fix it up in stages? Is it worth even saving? We even looked at ready made Amish built garages. We definitely have crossed the brand new, big and beautiful garage from our list. We just can’t afford that. Any advice on this one guys would be welcomed. Stay tuned.

2 – Major cross-stitch projects completed. I purchased a beautiful new chart from Modern Folk Embroidery a few weeks ago and I am ready to start it. I have a small part of the border done but am working to finish the Autumn House first. The other large project I am looking to complete is the mystery SAL that Modern Folk Embroidery Offers every year. I plan on participating in that. Hopefully I can keep up!

3 – Projects completed in our house (not to include windows). Last spring a part of our garage’s roof blew right off leave our already dilapidated garage leaking. We knew we needed to get the roof repaired but we weren’t inclined to spent a lot on it. With advice from a handyman friend my husband has been working to get the roof repaired himself as best as he can. He hopes to have it done tonight actually! There are at least 3 other projects we want to work on over the winter and Spring which I will write about soon.

4 – Books read a month. After considering my reading goals for the months ahead, I want to include magazines in this category. One of the magazines I read this month was over 150 pages and I read it cover to cover. Here is what I got read in September:

A Glorious FreedomOlder Women Leading Extraordinary Lives By Lisa Congdon – This was a fabulous, inspiring, motivating book about women over forty following their dreams and having careers and accomplishments some into their 90s and 100s. It’s never too late! I highly recommend this book.

Where Women Create – Mindful Studios – Inspiring Wellness and Beauty Magazine – This was another inspiring, beautifully photographed read for me. I enjoyed reading each article sitting on my front porch everyday with my coffee. I was disappointed when I finished it because…I wished it hadn’t ended! lol. I plan on purchasing other editions of this magazine for even more inspiring articles.

Factory Girl Part 3 – By Stephanie Bond – I admit, I enjoy author Stephanie Bond. Her writing is easy reading and sometimes that’s just what I need at the end of the day. Bond is on her fourth serial e-novella. Factory Girl is her newest along with her previous series, Coma Girl, Comeback Girl, and Temp Girl. Each of these series are six months long and you can read ahead or like me read just one excerpt a day. I look forward to my daily Stephanie Bond installment. She also writes full length fiction as well. Check her out!

Magnolia Journal – Fall 2019 Issue – At first I was really engaged in this issue of Magnolia but by the end I fell a bit out of love with it. It didn’t get into the meat of why we aren’t feeling whole and the recipes and decorating ideas were few.

That’s it for books/magazines for the month!

5 – Windows replaced in our house. Nothing on this one yet.

6 – Blog posts a month. Only got 5 blog posts in for September. This post was going to be number 6 but I am a couple of days late. More posts for October!

7 – Movies at the theater with my family. My husband and mother and I went to see Downton Abbey last week! We are huge fans of the series and were very sad when it ended so we were thrilled when we heard the movie version was coming out in September. It did not disappoint! Seeing HighClere Castle on the big screen and all of our favorite characters again made our hearts happy! Even if you have never watched the series I still highly recommend the movie.

8 – Hours a month studying herbal medicine and/or herbology. I only got about 2 hours in studying herbology this month. It’s hard to know where to begin studying because there is so much one can learn on this subject. I hope to have a clearer path to learning on this for October.

9 – Birthday cards sent out to 9 friends. None sent out this month

10 – Small cross-stitch projects done for the year. I worked on multiple small projects this month but I haven’t finished any of them yet.

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11 – New herb varieties planted for the year. I won’t work on this until Spring.

12 – Recipes I teach to my son. I barely saw the boy this month so nothing accomplished

13 – Minutes of exercise a day. Ok I suck at doing this and that’s exactly why I put it on the list of goals. I officially exercised once this month. See what I mean about being terrible at it? I say officially once but unofficially I get a lot of exercise. Setting up and taking down for the farmers market each week is a lot of physical work. My part-time bakery job is great exercise. My gardening is exercise, and going up and down the stairs to help out my church put school supplies away for the year is also fabulous exercise. But it’s not specific targeting exercise that I need. So I will continue to work on this in October. (Hopefully).

14 – Walks a month. Again I only got one official walk in this month.

15 – $15,000 in debt paid off. check out my update in my Not Impressed with my Debt blog series coming tomorrow.

16 – Proper dates with my husband (planned). This is an interesting one. We had two official dates both kind of planned. Basically a date for us is just being together for a couple of hours without anyone else to entertain. My husband is one of those guys that likes to be “on”. If you know him than you know what I mean. A date for me is when I get him all to myself and he is “off” for the night. No one for him to impress but me.

Our first date was getting the oil changed in the Subaru. Fancy huh? It’s an hour drive to the dealership we bought the vehicle at so it gives us time to talk and then we go out afterwards for something to eat. While waiting for the oil to be changed we checked out all of the new models which is always fun and then we went for dinner. We usually try to go to our first date restaurant but unfortunately it had closed 😦 so we headed back closer to home. We had dinner at a local diner and had fun. Hubby even snapped a photo of how much fun we had. Can you tell I am not a big fan of selfies? Of course he posted the photo on Facebook and got some teasing from his friends that I didn’t look too thrilled on our oil change date night and suggested giving me a better night in the future.

Date number two was unexpected but we were given tickets to the musical La Cage aux Folles and boy were they fabulous seats! We really enjoyed this as our date night and my husband loved it. What I didn’t realize was he had never been to a professional production of any kind, ever! We have been together for 12 years and I never knew this. Well that will change now because I love the theater and will plan more dates like this for him and I.

17 – Etsy Listings posted a month. I got 18 listings done this month. Hooray! Check out my Etsy shop here Red Mill Vintage and New Etsy Shop

18 – Books of the Bible read. I am working on the book of Daniel and will give an update next time.

19 – New Recipes tried. The only new recipe I have tried so far is the cauliflower chowder recipe that you can read about here Cauliflower Chowder.

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20 – Visits with people. No visits yet. Now that the Farmers Market is done for the season I can dig into this goal more..

That’s all I have for now. I think I am doing pretty well! What kinds of things are you all working on? Catch you next time! -MM

SAL- Autumn House #2

Even with all of my canning and preserving, I worked on multiple WIPs the last three weeks!Autumn house got the most done on it out of all the projects. Here is where I left off last time:

And here is where I am now:

Here is a short video of me stitching the Autumn House.

I also started a project, which for the first time I designed myself and it even has some embroidery elements. I also used a 32 count linen which I have never been brave enough to use before. It took me a bit to get used to stitching over 2 squares but I got it!

I have some tweaking to do. Still not sure about the red hearts.And the most exciting project I worked on the last three weeks is big project #1 out of two I have as a goal this year for my 20 for ’20…Fraktur Hex by Modern Folkart Embroidery

You’ll see more on this next time.Thanks for checking in with me and I will see you in October!I belong to a group of fine stitchers in this SAL. We all stitch different things during our check-ins so please go visit their links below to see what we are all up to! I would like to welcome Susan and Anne to the group!

20 for ’20 – Visits

Fulfillment. Do you feel fulfilled? I don’t. Not one bit.

Every day I log onto Facebook hoping I guess to find fulfillment somewhere in and amongst my newsfeed readings and every single time I get nothing. Seriously.

Instead I get political posts bashing one side or the other, abortion, gun control, gender identity, kids puking, memes up the yin yang, mean spirited news stories, and the ever abundant selfies….they leave me with nothing. I am not inspired by these things. I don’t know why I do it.

Why do I torture myself and log on?? FOMO? (Fear of missing out)?

What if someone died and I missed it? What if someone announced they were pregnant and I didn’t know for months? What if I missed the news story about the Reese’s peanut butter cup bandits and I couldn’t laugh about it with my friends? (seriously that was a news story around here yesterday).

I don’t care about this stuff. It leaves me feeling angry, frustrated, sad, depressed, irate, indignant and hopeless.

We are a society now of lazy people my friends. We don’t have enough conversations with each other. We don’t talk on the telephone. we don’t hear each others’ voices. We are all lacking joy and inspiration and fun and laughter.

Come on! We are a generation of fraidy cats. We are afraid of missing out, we are afraid to offend, we are afraid of failing, we are afraid of soaring!!

That’s why when posting my 20 for ’20 the very first thing I filled in was 20 visits with people. It’s important to me. Hearing, seeing, laughing with actual human beings is the best!

When was the last time you picked up the phone and had a conversation with someone?

Facebook, ya kinda suck.

I’ll go back to reading my book now. It’s about women soaring after the age of 40 and I am enjoying every second of it. -MM.

20 for ’20 Challenge- Cauliflower Chowder Recipe

In my 20 for ’20 Challenge this year I challenged myself to trying 19 new recipes.

Last weekend I wanted to make a cauliflower chowder and after searching the interweb I landed on Damn Delicious blog’s cauliflower chowder recipe. Boy is it good!

I did make a change and used crumbled Italian sausage because I didn’t have the bacon and I added corn because, let’s face it, we have a ton of corn available right now!

Here is a link to the original recipe:

Damn Delicious-Cauliflower Chowder

Let me know if you try it and what you think. Enjoy!

One new recipe tried 18 to go! -MM

20 for ’20 Challenge

I read a blog post by one of my fellow stitchers about 19 for 19.

19 for 19 was a challenge she was doing to motivate herself to accomplish specific goals for the year.

I have done yearly challenges before but none quite like this.

I am coming in late to the game for 2019 so I am going to start 2020 early. Why wait, right?

I like this challenge because I have so many interests and hobbies and 20 distinct goals will help motivate me in all of those interests and hobbies plus starting now will give me 16 months to complete things instead of just 12 months.

Here is my 20 for ’20

1. Build a new garage

2 – Major cross-stitch projects completed.

3 – Projects completed in our house (not to include windows).

4 – Books read a month.

5 – Windows replaced in our house.

6 – Blog posts a month.

7 – Movies at the theater with my family.

8 – Hours a month studying herbal medicine and/or herbology a month.

9 – Birthday cards sent out to 9 friends.

10 – Small cross-stitch projects done for the year.

11 – New herb varieties planted for the year.

12 – Recipes I teach to my son.

13 – Minutes of exercise a day.

14 – Walks a month.

15 – $15,000 in debt paid off.

16 – Proper dates with my husband (planned).

17 – Etsy Listings posted a month.

18 – Books of the Bible read.

19 – New Recipes tried.

20 – Visits with people.

Some of these are pretty lofty goals but I will post about my progress often.

If you did this challenge what would your 20 for ’20 goals be?

Here’s to the next 16 months! -MM

SAL – Autumn House #1

I am sorry for such a late update. I didn’t forget. I had to work a full day today and then had to get 7 pints of pickled beets canned. Lots to do to catch up since we got back from our trip to Ireland on Thursday night.

I decided that I needed a bit of a “palette cleanser” after such a difficult last project so I started on the “Autumn House” which was a free download from designer Brooke Nolan.

Super cute isn’t it? I have worked on the Spring House in the past but have not finished it yet.

With a 7 hour flight to Ireland and a 7 hour flight back with lots of time to wait in the airport I got a lot accomplished on this piece.

Here is where I ended on Thursday night so far:

I promise a better photo next time.

This group of stitchers are working on some pretty fantastic pieces. Please visit their blogs to see what they are up to.

I look forward to posting my progress on this project in three weeks. See you then! -MM