Penny Pinching Peach

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My Top Five Posts Of 2017

I was doing a blog review of the past year, and thought that I would share my five most popular posts of the year with you!

Seven Things You Will Miss When Living in a Camper

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Budget Friendly Gifts for Hunters and Outdoorsmen

Gifts for hunters

Safely Flavored Drinks for Pregnant Mommies

Cucumber Key Lime Infused Water

Completely Healthy Cookies

Chocolate chip and cinnamon craisin

Chocolate chip and cinnamon craisin

10 Preschool Activities Using Household Items

5 Brain-Boosting Busy Boxes For Toddlers

5 Brain-Boosting Busy Boxes For Toddlers

Did you have a personal favorite? Could you share one of these or your personal favorite post of mine on social media somewhere? Here’s hoping for an even better 2018!!! I am starting the year Learning Gratitude Through Life Changes! What about you?


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A Day in the Life of a Frugal Homeschool Mom

2018-01-04 15.21.27.jpgToday the thought struck me that being frugal is not just a necessity on my family’s budget, but an integral part of who I am.

Let’s walk through parts of a typical day as a frugal homeschooling mom!

“Penny Pinching Peach is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to” May also include other affiliate links to help my family while helping yours!

This morning started with me cooking a breakfast for the four of us who were at home (sausages and eggs) that totalled under $1.75 altogether.

After breakfast and chores, I got the kids started on homeschool work. The toddler wanted school,  so I gave her challenges in her coloring book and let her pick up things with jumbo tweezers.

Meanwhile,  I shredded chicken thighs leftover from hubby grilling night before last, boiled noodles and made ranch dressing for the sauce. Chopped part of a $1 marked down big bag of fresh spinach and got a bag of frozen peas heated to toss in. Dinner is coming in under $5 for 5 people,  probably with some left over.

The kids had a healthy a mid morning snack out of a handful of peas and a bunch of spinach leaves dipped in the dredges of ranch dip.

My kids and I are having sinus trouble.  I threw a couple of drops each of lemon, frankincense and copaiba essential oils  in the diffuser.  It left the house smelling yummy and us all breathing easier for very little expense, especially with Barefut Essential Oils.

Barefut Essential Oils, pure quality and affordable!

Lunch was sandwiches with fresh spinach dip I made with part of the dressing,  a bit of cream cheese and a bunch of shredded spinach.

After school,  we made each child necklaces from some themed candy filled ornaments similar to these we bought 8 for $1 after Christmas.

Later when we want a snack, spinach dip and crackers or apples will be on the menu.

I didn’t think much about all of this as I went,  but it is obvious that I constantly make many small choices which allow us to live life fully in a way that costs much less than average.

Is being thrifty natural for you,  or do you have to work at penny pinching? What are some things you wish you could save on? Here are some of my more strange tricks for saving money!


Seven Things You Will Miss When Living In a Camper

Seven Things You Will Miss When Living In a Camper Full Time

Seven Things You Will Miss When Living In a Camper Full Time

We have been living in a camper with our three small children for almost a full year now.

I have thinking about the numerous unusual things I have learned and experienced this year. I thought that anyone considering long term camping should know what we take for granted every day they are likely to miss,  and ways to cope with that. Here’s presenting my personal list, and hoping someone finds it useful!

May contain affiliate links.

Seven Things You Will Miss When Living In a Camper!

  1. Long hot showers! You will learn to turn the water off to soap up, shampoo and shave your legs. If you don’t,  you will feel the freeze! Even then, hurry up, buttercup! Want a luxuriously long shower? Get a portable shower caddy for your shower necessities, then camp where they have very clean and well kept bath houses or visit relatives!
  2. Not rocking during storms! You will become very in tune with the moods of nature. It can be amazing in some aspects, but it is a whole different experience to be quite literally rocked by storms!
  3. Insulation! Even if your camper is “four seasons”, it is not remotely close to an actual house in terms of insulation.  If you are going to be staying in a camper during all seasons,  choose your rig carefully and research numerous tips for riding out changing seasons. My biggest tip for summer is shade, shade, SHADE!!!! My biggest tip for winter is to add insulation where you can and buy an infrared heater.
  4. Any semblance of privacy! You hear, see, feel and smell almost everything together when you live in a camper! I am already extremely in tune to people around me,  so this can be overwhelming.  For night, an amazing sound machine like this one I have is a lifesaver! Trust me on this, y’all! Also, three kids can and will crowd into the teeny tiny bathroom with me most times.  There is no lock!
  5. Extra space…for anything! Minimalism is your friend!  Every item must have a use and a place, or it must go! If you have children,  this can get tricky. I limit the toys allowed inside to the things they live most and play with constantly. (I plan a whole post just for managing toys in small spaces without going nuts or living in a toy box.)
  6. Real toilet paper!  I had forgotten how soft regular toilet paper can be after a year of one ply rv toilet paper, until I visited a conventional home. It’s like sandpaper versus clouds!
  7. In home laundry! Unless you are lucky enough to have space for something like this mini washer and dryer, you are going to get acquainted with laundromats or find alternative solutions to get your laundry done. My husband takes most of ours with him on shift.

Love pure quality essential oils, but have a tight budget? I love Barefut Essential Oils, and they run some amazing specials on top of the usual great prices!

Do you live in  a camper? What would you add to this list?

Want to hear from the beginning of this adventure? Read about our Life in a Tiny House on Wheels- Full Time Camping!


Looking For Light When Life is Dark

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Finding the light in dark times

I have been neglecting my readers for awhile now. I have been lost in a never ceasing whirlwind of unfortunate events.

Life circumstances sent me into a deep depression, which was joined by severe anxiety triggered by unrelenting stress on top of trauma and the soul numbing attempt to rise above it for my children while trying to use all of my penny pinching skills to stretch financial resources that just were not there to provide even necessities. I am still bone weary, but I was ready to give up on life completely.
I know that I am being vague, but I am still too raw to bare my soul about everything we have been going through and are still enduring. Life is improving, and we are working hard to make it better, but it is not easy by far.
Penny Pinching Peach is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to” 
There is light glowing through the fog that has darkened our existence, but I am still struggling. I am constantly reminding myself of one of my favorite quotes, the serenity prayer as seen here: I hope to begin to share my journey and life with y’all again.
I am finding my way back to myself. I hope that my friends here will still want read the things I have to share from my heart and soul about family, creativity, frugal living, homeschooling, homesteading and everything else!

Are you also struggling?  You are not alone!


Indoor Water Play

Indoor Water Play

Indoor Water Play- a great way to keep toddlers happy indoors!

My children are all little water babies.

Usually this tendency shows in them splashing water all over the bathroom when they are supposed to be washing their hands. Finding them lingering in there playing in the sink and flooding the floor is frustrating , but I do try to give them fun opportunities to satisfy this urge to splash and pour.

One thing they love to do, when they can’t go outside to play, is set them up with some indoor water play.

I get out my humongous pot and fill it about a third of the way with water. I’ll set it on a beach towel on the kitchen floor, then throw in some cups, toy boats, funnels or other small items that will be fun to play with in the water. They can easily stay at this simple activity for the better part of an hour, especially if I switch out the toys every 15-20 minutes or so.

Sometimes I give him toy cars and it’s a “car wash”. Other times he is giving his dinosaurs or doll a bath. Get creative!  That’s the whole point!

This activity works really well for my preschooler to do while I’m working with my oldest daughter on her school at the table. He’s usually very content and relatively quiet. It makes it easier for her to focus than if he’s running around being a wild child, even if she is working independently.

Do your children enjoy playing with water indoors? For more fun activities for the cold weather this winter, check out 10 preschool activities using household items!


Which is Stronger: Self Preservation or Maternal Instinct?

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Maternal instinct versus self preservation!  Which will win? A mommy’s dilemma! 

Has anyone else realized through repeated painful testing that your protective maternal instinct is much stronger than your sense of self preservation?


I slipped on the stairs carrying my baby girl a couple of days ago. My son fell in my room as I was going down, and I was looking back to check on him. I was able to hold my littlest princess high and untouched as I landed full force on my right hiney cheek on the metal post of the shoe rack.

I have spent a couple of days so far with a large bruised lump in an awkward spot and a very sore posterior and back, being reminded how often the people in my household smack my hiney.

I wish this was the first test of maternal instincts versus self preservation I have passed with such painfully obvious results.

Let’s just say that I am a clumsy hiney, usually carrying a kid and I am frequently injured my my own mishaps. My kids come out of 99 percent of these incidents 100% okay.

I guess my kids can rest assured Mommy loves them more than she does herself. 😉 😉 😉

Feeling less than perfect? Obviously,  I am far from perfect! I want you to know that even if you are struggling, you are not alone!


Life in a Tiny House on Wheels- Full Time Camping!

Tiny House Full Time RV Camper

What do you do when life is not going the way you planned and you realize you can’t make it go the way you want?

Do you pitch a fit? Keep trying to make life fit your plan? Curl up in a ball and give up? Find another path to take?

We reevaluated our entire situation, and chose a completely new path and lifestyle for our family.

Our dream included our nearly 2,000 square foot home on 8.5 quiet acres with lots of animals, while my husband worked a local fire department and we grew roots in a nice community. My husband was laid off from the job. Things weren’t as dreamy here as we’d hoped, for many reasons. Our finances would never improve with the way things were. We needed a change, but didn’t know what to do. After much prayer and brainstorming, we came up with a solution that seemed workable.

We found a family friendly campground, bought a camper, put our house up for sale and became an unintentional part of the RV and tiny house community!

We lived in a 26 foot camper with a queen bed at one end and triple bunks at the other  for two months to start off. Let me tell you, that was a huge challenge with three children (ages 6, 4 and baby)!! I thought I was going to go crazy! It was a nice little camper, and would’ve been wonderful for camping trips. For even close to full time living, it was not all that functional.

We did learn and grow a lot through that experience with no separate spaces for living, so I can’t completely regret it. However, I would advise anyone with children to just start off with something more like what we traded in for last week- a fifth wheel with a bunkroom! After living in a 26X7 foot camper with one pop out, a 33X8 foot fifth wheel with three pop outs seems quite spacious! It is laid out very well, and even has an extra half bath.

If you are looking at spending a lot of time in a tiny home on wheels with kids, here are some of our personal must haves after a couple of months experience of RV living with kids…

A bunk room is an absolute necessity!

We love spending time with our kids, but we need somewhere to send them. They need their own individual space (bunks personally decorated with organization for their special treasures), as well as space for their kids stuff without everyone having to walk over it. Trust me- get the bunk house!

An extra half bath!

This may not be a necessity for everyone, but it was a big deal for us. Risking TMI, but if you have a large family or small children, this feature is a lifesaver. I was literally going at least 3-4 days before being able to…umm….relieve myself, because someone was always shouting they needed to go or bashing in to wash their hands. It was already taking a toll on my health.  You can also count on the kids fighting over the bathroom or needing to pee the moment you get in the shower.Get it if you can!

Efficient use of space.

When your space is as a premium, you want every inch to be well utilized in the design of your camper. Think about what you truly need and where you can store it. Storage space under benches, sofas, beds, etc. is your friend!

A stove with an oven.

Not all campers have ovens, and I want to be able to cook just the same as if I were in a full size stationary home.

As a side note, don’t forget to figure in what you are towing with and the weight limits for it. We bought an ultra light model, because it was half ton towable. My husband drives a half ton truck, and an upgrade was not in our budget. Be sure to check the limits for your vehicle before you shop, and consider that it will weigh more fully loaded.

I never thought that I would be living in a camper, and I never thought I could be happy in such a small home with children.

We are learning a whole different way of life and a completely new perspective. I won’t pretend that it is easy. I will say that we are growing through this process. We are more adaptable than we realized, and our children are happy as long as they feel safe and loved wherever they are. Sometimes what you dream of isn’t what is best. Sometimes what is best is something you’d never considered before. I don’t know where this new path will take us, but I am confident that we will get stronger and learn more as we travel along.

Has your life ever taken a completely unexpected turn along a path you never thought to take? How did it turn out?

I will write more later about our experiences, some ways to get organized and make life easier and better in a small space, and lots of other goodies. For now, check out Seven Things You Will Miss When Living In a Camper for things I miss and Traveling With Little Riders for some handy hints!