Friday, June 24, 2011


Gleaning is an Old Testament form of charity.  The Bible tells us that we should leave food in our fields so that those less fortunate can pick the leftovers to feed themselves.  Ruth took advantage of this form of charity to feed herself and her mother-in-law in the Book of Ruth.  Modern gleaning is a little different but it is still a wonderful concept.

Mrs. Roy has gotten a couple of phone calls and emails recently asking if she wanted to come pick leftovers from folks’ gardens.  Mrs. Roy is all about free food so the answer is always yes!  Mrs. Roy picked corn, enough to put 5 quarts of creamed corn in the freezer.  Then Mrs. Roy and her mother picked peas - enough to put 4 quarts in the freezer.  Then Mrs. Roy and a friend picked blueberries - enough to make several quarts of berries for the freezer and still have some to share.  Life is good.

Mrs. Roy likes the concept of gleaning because it involves work.  Mrs. Roy gets really frustrated at folks who want to sit at home and have people deliver charity to them when they are capable of working.  Mrs. Roy worries about what is going to happen to a society that encourages such behavior.

Gleaning is also a good byproduct of the fresh food movement.  More and more of Mrs. Roy’s friends are planting gardens and/or buying local produce and other products.  The downtown association in our town is sponsoring a farmer’s market on the courthouse square every other Saturday.  In addition to vegetables, there are vendors selling homemade soaps and goat cheese and milk and grass-fed beef.

Mrs. Roy got tickled at the fellow selling grass-fed beef.  He was just bound and determined to tell Mrs. Roy that she had never eaten beef like that.  Mrs. Roy finally had to confess that she grew up on a farm with 60 head of grass-fed Charolais in the pasture.  Poor fellow just didn’t know who he was talking to!  A friend of mine laughed and said all his meat was grass-fed when he was growing up and now it’s fancy.  Ain’t it the truth.  Ha

Mrs. Roy's First Tomato of 2011

Mrs. Roy has some tomato plants in the backyard, our only garden attempt.  If these do well, Mrs. Roy may add some peppers and squash next year.  We’ll see.  Mrs. Roy isn’t likely to have enough produce to set up a booth at the farmer’s market but one thing is for sure; Mrs. Roy will be sharing the bounty as often as possible.  And if folks want to come glean their own, that’s even better.

Mrs. Roy thinks the Bible is right - again.  We should share our bounty and gleaning is a way to do that while giving the receiver the dignity of knowing they worked (at least a little) for the gift they receive.  It’s a good thing.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Happy Father's Day

What could possibly be a better Father's Day gift for Mr. Roy than an Army gnome?

Two Army gnomes, of course!

Mrs. Roy bought this Army gnome for Mr. Roy a few months ago and put it away for a future gift.  Mrs. Roy's mother was going through some boxes from her last move and discovered a gift she had bought for Mr. Roy a year or more ago.  You guessed it, an Army gnome!  Mrs. Roy and her mother have had several good chuckles about buying the same gift.  And yes, it is sort of scary that we think so much alike!

Fortunately, Mr. Roy is a good sport and he immediately saw the humor in the situation.  So we now have not one but TWO Army gnomes to add to our ever-growing collection.  Mr. Roy is considering making them bookends - or .....  Stay tuned.  ha

Sunday, June 5, 2011


This picture doesn't have anything to do with the 100 day challenge but if you ever want anything from Mrs. Roy, it helps to be 3 years old and wearing this shirt!

Gary over at The Dollar Stretcher sends Mrs. Roy a "Financial Independence" e-newsletter every day.  A while back, he included this message:

September 22nd marked the last 100 days of the year, so I took the opportunity to set a couple of goals that I could meet within that time. I also broke the 100 days into 10 sets of 10. One of my goals was to lose 10 lbs by the end of the year. To lose one pound, I would have to burn 3500 calories. Instead of having to burn 500 calories a day over 7 days (a week), I found it’s a lot easier to burn 350 calories a day over 10 days. Another goal was to save money for a little weekend trip that I plan on taking in January. I set aside a dollar a day to help pay for it. With some other money I have set aside, I will be able to pay cash for the entire trip!!

I challenged a couple of other people to join me. One person wanted to pay off her credit card, so she decided to save $5.00 a day and make her lunch every day, setting the money she would have used to buy lunch, aside. She had her card paid off by the 70th day of the challenge. Another one wanted to finish a scrapbooking project, and decided on doing one page every 10 days. She’s almost done. I’ve already lost my 10 lbs and am working on a couple more for good measure.

I’ve challenged a bigger group for the First 100 Days Challenge which starts on January 1st. This helps to reinforce how important short-term goals are and how they can contribute to the larger, medium and long term goals. Set some goals (not resolutions) for yourself for the first 100 days, and have fun. Make sure that you can realistically achieve them by April 10th. It’s amazing what you can do!!!

Michelle S.

This whole thing reminded Mrs. Roy of the way you eat an elephant - one bite at a time.  So often we get sidetracked or discouraged when we set big goals for ourselves.  Mrs. Roy’s battle of the bulge is a good example; sure, it would be nice to be 20 pounds thinner but Mrs. Roy likes chocolate a little too much.  However, being good for just a few days - Mrs. Roy can handle that!

So Mrs. Roy decided to see if this 100 day challenge thing would work.  The first thing Mrs. Roy did was start putting a $5 bill in a piggy bank at work every Monday morning.  (Mrs. Roy decided not to stress about Saturday and Sunday.)  This has been a huge success - to date there is about $80 in the piggy and Mrs. Roy is trying to decide how to spend it; vacation money has the top spot right now.  And Mrs. Roy has allowed some fudging - piggy has paid for lunch a time or two when there was no cash in Mrs. Roy’s wallet.

So Mrs. Roy decided to see if the concept would work on the weight loss front.  Sure enough, Mrs. Roy has dropped 10 pounds and counting.  Watching fat grams and reducing snacks has had a big impact.  And when we had a family get together last week, Mrs. Roy just went with the flow and didn’t stress.  A few days of being extra diligent took care of those burgers and chips so thoroughly enjoyed over the weekend!  Small victories definitely keep Mrs. Roy motivated.

So what else can Mrs. Roy apply this 100 day challenge to?  Clutter is the next challenge - if Mrs. Roy put one item per day in the charity box, recycling bin or trash can, that would be 100 items decluttered!   Everything counts - ink pens that don’t write, magazines already read, clothes that don’t fit.  This morning, it was a pair of socks with a hole in the heel.  Mrs. Roy does not have to wear holey socks - and neither do you!

Other 100 day challenges might be reading a chapter of the Bible every day (or just one verse); walking a little every day for 100 days; cleaning one thing every day (say, washing one window or cleaning one tub); drinking one cup of water or milk every day; writing one letter or note card every day; doing five minutes of stomach exercises every day; you get the picture.

Let Mrs. Roy know if you accept the 100 day challenge; Mrs. Roy will check back with you in 100 days to see how you’ve done.

Life is good!