Struggles Make Us Stronger, More Time, Frugal Gardening – HBHW Newsletter

April 28th, 2010


I was reminded last weekend of both the devastation and the beauty of nature.  The terrible tornadoes that ripped through the south causing death and destruction have left many of us feeling sad and helpless.

Even though I try to count my blessings every day, I know that far too often I am besieged by petty feelings of my own little day-to-day struggles.  I looked for answers last Sunday for the terrible things that I and so many around me were feeling.

Then, as seemingly an answer to my prayers,  on Sunday I received a lovely reminder of the beauty of nature and how, through our struggles, we grow stronger.  I wanted to share this inspiration with you today.

The inspirational quote and story this week also follow the same theme of finding strength through struggles and adversity.  Giving thanks is easy when it’s for something pleasant, but finding grace in difficult times, especially devastating times in our life… well, that is something most of us find almost impossible to do.

If you will, look at your own life today and see if you can find blessings in the most difficult times you’ve experienced.

Those are my thoughts this week. As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. Feel free to email me at

Warm Regards,

Susanne – The Hillbilly Housewife

Inspirational Quote

Adversity and Strength

Every trial endured and weathered in the right spirit makes a soul nobler and stronger than it was before.
~James Buckham~


Creating Hours – Time Management For Busy Parents

Today I thought I’d share a wonderful time management resource with you that my friend Ellen C. Brown has put together.

Could you use an extra hour a day? How about more than one? Ellen has written an excellent 75 page ebook on helping you become more efficient and effective. Just imagine what you could do with an extra hour a day!

I can highly recommend this guide for any busy parent. You can order it right here for $19.95

To learn more about the Creating Hours ebook and find out how to order visit:

News From The HBHW Club

What? You haven’t heard about the Hillbilly Housewife Club? It’s a members only forum packed full of great information, resources, and friendly chit chat about the things we are all interested in – fun, frugal living. Come Join Us And See What All The Chatter Is About!


We have a very valuable resource available to our Club members that you won’t want to miss.

What if you could plant a garden that produced food for your family without spending a fortune doing so?

Our FRUGAL GARDENING resource features an interview with my friend, gardening expert Tawra Kellam of This informative and fun resource explores the world of frugal gardening in simple detail so that even the novice gardener can get started on the right foot.

Frugal Gardening – An Interview With Tawra Kellam, is a resource you won’t want to miss.  Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned gardener, you’ll appreciate the neighborly “over the fence” chat format of this resource.  You’ll hear simple techniques for getting the most out of your garden, no matter how small your garden is or how many years you’ve been gardening.

Tawra not only brings years of  gardening experience to this resource, but she is educated in greenhouse management and landscape design. Tawra has down-to-earth suggestions for every garden size and type.

Even though this resource is filled with simple ideas, there’s plenty of detailed information to help you start planning your frugal garden, even if you’ve never gardened before.

This resource focuses on planting a garden that will pay you back for your efforts!  The focus is on FRUGAL – which makes sense if you’re gardening to save money on vegetables!

You don’t want to miss this informative resource. Join the HBHW Club and grab your FREE resource today!


As a HBHW newsletter subscriber, you can join for only $10 per month. Click on this link for all the details:

Not sure about joining the HBHW Club yet? To make joining us even easier, I’ll let you try it out for just a dollar for the first 7 days.

How will you benefit from joining the HBHW Club with this offer? As an example, for just that one dollar you’ll have 7 days of access to over 350 great frugal recipes that are tried and true, with a new recipe every day. You’ll also have 7 days to ask your most puzzling frugal homemaking questions – and even get answers!

Join us now and enjoy 7 days of frugal fun. Click on the link here and come aboard!

Let’s just take a peek at what’s been going on at the HBHW Club Forum.

One of our most active topics lately has been our Walking Challenge.  We have found that when we are accountable to someone for our exercise and diet programs, we are more successful in our efforts.  Logging into the Club daily or weekly is a great way to get support for our personal fitness program.  When we hit our goal, we cheer each other on, and when we slip a little, we still cheer each other on with a reminder that we have friends who are right behind us, celebrating our every effort.  The Club has been a great motivator to me, and many other members, to keep up a fitness program.

We’ve met a few new members recently who share our commitment to live a frugal lifestyle – for many reasons.  Frugal living often offers a healthier lifestyle; such as growing, or raising, one’s own food supply.  Homesteading is indeed a very industrious undertaking, but one that is rewarding on many levels.  I applaud our homesteading members!

Even if a home does not have enough room for a big garden, many of our members are anxiously awaiting warmer weather to plant a few small containers of herbs, tomatoes, or whatever will grow in small areas.  We are sharing what we know about planting little gardens as well as big ones.

Saving money by living frugally sometimes isn’t enough to stay financially afloat.  Making money at home has been a lively discussion at the Club.  We have several members who have put their talents to work for them and are earning real money doing something they love at home.  This is definitely a discussion that everyone can learn something from, and one in which we have an opportunity to spread the word about our work-at-home entrepreneurs.

How would you like to join the conversation?  As a Club member, you’ll be able to share your opinions, frugal tips, and ideas on everything from raising chickens to making money by selling your crafts.  Are you ready to join us at the HBHW Club?

Click the following  link and try The HBHW Club for only $1. We’d love to have you come join us!

Now that you’ve joined us at the HBHW Club, you’ll want to be sure to take a stroll through the resources available free to Club members only. Popular resources include:

  • Pantry Cooking
  • Freezer/Pantry Challenge & Meal Planning
  • Setting Up A Family Budget
  • Simple Summer Cooking
  • Getting Out Of Debt For Good
  • Utility Bill Savings
  • Meal Planning Guide – Simple Step-by-Step Method
  • Frugal Family Summer Fun

Let me know what you think of the resources and if there are any topics we should explore further. As a Club member, your opinion is highly valued because it’s YOUR Club!

Join The Hillbilly Housewife Club for Just a Dollar

I’d like to share one of the recipes that was submitted to the HBHW Club this past week.

Royal Chicken Divan

  • 2 (10 oz) pkgs. frozen broccoli spears
  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 3 Tblsp. sherry
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 3 chicken breasts, cooked and sliced into thin strips

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Put broccoli in sauce pan, fill half way with water, bring to a boil over high heat, let boil for 2 minutes, remove and drain.  Set aside.

In saucepan, melt butter over medium low heat.  Whisk in flour, stirring until combined and just starting to turn golden.  Slowly whisk in chicken broth and bring to a slow boil – continue stirring and cooking until sauce thickens.  Remove from heat and stir in cream, sherry, salt, and pepper.

Arrange the cooked broccoli in a 9×13 inch baking dish.  Pour half the cream sauce over the top of the broccoli.  Arrange the sliced chicken on top of the broccoli.

In the cream sauce still in the sauce pan, add the Parmesan cheese and stir to combine.  Pour this sauce over the chicken.

Put in oven and bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes until hot and bubbly and top starts to brown.

And here are a few more recipes that have recently been added to the member area.

  • Freezer Ready Twice Baked Potatoes
  • White Corn Meal Buttermilk Bread
  • Southern Green Tomato Pie
  • Cheddar Creamed Pea Casserole

All in all, we have over 381 new recipes in the member area already.

One of my favorite parts of the HBHW Club is the Member Forum. Here are just a few of the more recent posts.

Member Forum Posts

Why don’t you join us so you can get in on the conversation. I look forward to chatting with you in the member area.

Featured Articles

Today I have not one but two articles on saving time for you from Ellen C. Brown of . I have know Ellen for quite a few years now and recommend her new time saving ebook for any busy mom.

Click the link below and learn :

12 Time Saving Tips For Parents

These simple changes and tips will make your life easier and less stressful in addition to saving you quite a bit of time each week.

Time and Choices

Find out how the choices you make effect your family life and your goals.

Healthy Hillbilly Housewife

Here’s what’s new on the healthy hillbilly housewife section. You can also go straight to

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Frugal Tips

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Do you have a tip to share? Fill out the submit a frugal tip form and I’ll be glad to add it to the site and share your tip in an upcoming edition of the newsletter.


Here are some of the most recent recipes that have been added to the HBHW site. Enjoy!

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Do you have a recipe you would like to share? Click here to send it to me and I’ll be happy to add it to the website.

I’m Looking For:

This section is all about you. If you are looking for a particular recipe or a tip on how to do something, submit it here and I will post it in an upcoming newsletter. I’ll give you my input and other readers of the newsletter will have the opportunity to share their recipes and tips as well. So take a moment to post your questions and of course if you have a tip or idea for any question posted in this section feel free to leave a comment under the appropriate post.

I’m Looking For Requests
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I’m Looking For Responses
Below you will find some of the recent responses to the “I’m Looking For” Requests. You may also want to go directly to this section and browse through all the recent submissions and replies. To do so, click on “I’m Looking for” here, and start looking through them.
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Inspirational Story

Potatoes, Eggs and Coffee
Once upon a time, a daughter complained to her father that her life was miserable and that she didn’t know how she was going to make it. She was tired of fighting and struggling all the time. It seemed just as one problem was solved, another one soon followed.
Her father, a chef, took her to the kitchen. He filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Once the three pots began to boil, he placed potatoes in one pot, eggs in the second pot, and ground coffee beans in the third pot. He then let them sit and boil, without saying a word to his daughter.
The daughter moaned and impatiently waited, wondering what he was doing. After twenty minutes, he turned off the burners. He took the potatoes out of the pot and placed them in a bowl. He pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. He then ladled the coffee out and placed it in a cup.
Turning to her, he asked, “Daughter, what do you see?”
“Potatoes, eggs, and coffee,” she hastily replied.
“Look closer,” he said, “and touch the potatoes.” She did and noted that they were soft.
He then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg.
Finally, he asked her to sip the coffee. Its rich aroma brought a smile to her face.
“Father, what does this mean?” she asked.
He then explained that the potatoes, the eggs, and coffee beans had each faced the same adversity, the boiling water. However, each one reacted differently.
The potato went in strong, hard and unrelenting, but in boiling water it became soft and weak. The egg was fragile with the thin outer shell protecting its liquid interior until it was put in the boiling water. Then the inside of the egg became hard.
However, the ground coffee beans were unique. After they were exposed to the boiling water, they changed the water and created something new.
“Which are you?” he asked his daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you resopnd? Are you a potato, an egg, or a coffee bean?”
In life, things happen around us and things happen to us, but the only thing that truly matters is what happens within us.
~author unknown

Final Thought

That’s it for this edition of the Hillbilly Housewife Newsletter. I hope you’ve had as much fun reading it as I had creating it for you. I also hope that you have found the information helpful and useful. And by all means feel free to forward the newsletter to family and friends or even better, encourage them to subscribe to it.

Do you have a question, a tip, a recipe or a story you’d like to share with us? Email it to me and I’ll include it in a future issue. Can’t wait to see what you have to say.

Warm Wishes,

Susanne – The Hillbilly Housewife

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