Five Frugal Things

by Katy on June 28, 2016 · 68 comments

  1. I drove to Costco this afternoon to buy cat food, coffee and yogurt. I ended up buying cat food, coffee and yogurt. Nothing else.
  2. I hung two loads of laundry on the clothesline today.
  3. I cleaned one of my mother’s guest cottages on Sunday, worked at the hospital on Monday, will work there tomorrow and will clean the other guest cottage on Thursday.
  4. I did not accept the offer of a Visa credit card application while at Costco today. And when my response to the guy’s solicitation was “No thanks, I try hard to stay away from credit cards” I was met with a  “Dave Ramsey, huh?” reply. I had to laugh.
  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet.

Now your turn. What frugal things have you been up to?

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

Click HERE to follow The Non-Consumer Advocate on Twitter.
Click HERE to follow The Non-Consumer Advocate on Instagram.
Click HERE to join The Non-Consumer Advocate Facebook group.
Click HERE to follow The Non-Consumer Advocate on Pinterest.

{ 68 comments… read them below or add one }

Laura June 28, 2016 at 11:57 pm

I learned (the hard way) to NEVER go into Costco without a list, and to not buy anything if it’s not on the list. Even if a sample is very tempting, it just goes on the list for next month’s trip.


Vickie June 29, 2016 at 11:32 am

I’m the same way in Sam’s!
I go on my lunch hour, that way my time is limited to just my list stuff. It’s WAY to tempting in those warehouse stores!!


Krystal June 29, 2016 at 2:09 am

I have not been very frugal since the last go-round, but I had to say how much I love the “Dave Ramsey” response! Even though I use a credit card (never to carry a balance) the TMMO has changed my approach exponentially.


Mand01 June 29, 2016 at 3:26 am

1. I’ve asked to work from home for the rest of the week, saving me four hours of driving and petrol. It also means I can pick my daughter up from care earlier and generally have an easier night.
2. I brought my lunch to work, which was a chopped salad leftover from last night and a can of salmon. It was yum and healthy.
3. I reworked my annual budget and found savings to save toward a trip to Europe in a few years, when the kids are older.
4. Got my electricity bill and compared to other like sized families in our area. Our family of four uses the same electricity as an average family of two. This is also the case for our water usage. Yay lower footprint. I put it down to LED globes and low flow shower heads.
5. Ummm….we have a wood combustion stove that retains heat overnight. I’m drying heavier items on our balustrade overnight when they are about 80 per cent dry, and reducing our dryer use in this wet weather considerably.


K D June 29, 2016 at 3:26 am

1. I returned to the store shoes I found to be not comfortable once I wore them around the house. Since I had to go to the mall to do so I called a friend to see if she wanted to go with me. We took a nice air-conditioned walk after I made the return (it was a warm and very humid day) and bought nothing. We were near a COSTCO but did not go there since I had no list.

2. Dinner was from the pantry/freezer and there are leftovers for another night.

3. I am enjoying a book from the library and have an e-book borrowed from there as well.

4. We’re walking in the morning for exercise, before it gets too hot. I’m still using my several year old low-tech pedometer to check how many steps I’m getting.

5. I did not buy the $50K boat we saw at the mall yesterday, nor any other boat.


Carrie June 29, 2016 at 4:12 am

1) I bought cloth diapers so we could put baby #7 back in cloth (I had sold my stash after the “we’re done” baby #6. Ha! I realize that’s spending, but the payback time is less than 2 months and he’ll be in diapers another year, so yes.

2) I cashed in $40 from iBotta that I earned referring people and using the app!

3) I got another free book from PaperBackSwap in the mail: The Tightwad Gazette Volume 2. Frugal porn!

4) Had friends over to play with my kids, went to the pool. Free fun.

5) Going to the library today so the littles can see a fire truck. More free fun.


Bee June 29, 2016 at 12:35 pm

I was thinking recently that I should purchase The Complete Tightwad Gazette. When I originally read it over 20 years ago, I checked it out of the library. I still use her basic recipes for lentil casserole, muffins and granola.


Jennifer June 30, 2016 at 4:19 am

I checked the complete one out at the library recently and kept it rechecking it out for several weeks. It’s really amazing how most of it all still applies to today with it being several years since it written. I just love that book!


Mand01 June 30, 2016 at 5:25 am

Me too – I still read it regularly. It’s not actually the ideas, it’s more the mindset. That book changed my life, actually.


Ruby June 30, 2016 at 7:13 am

Yes to all this. Any time I feel consumerism creeping in, I pull out the Tightwad Gazette and start re-reading it, and a lot of her recipes are long-time family favorites.

Stacy June 30, 2016 at 1:56 pm

I did the same thing! I got the same book from bookmooch a few weeks ago!!


Beth Anne June 29, 2016 at 4:22 am

1. Sadly had my last chiropractor adjustment/massage. July 1 deductible goes up to $1300 from $300 so will not be going back unless the deductible for some reason gets met.

2. Turned in a receipt to my medical flex account which will provide some needed cash.

3. Not a very frugal day yesterday ate out two times not stressing though as some days you just do as other days I don’t.

4. Weather went from low 90’s to 68 yesterday happily opened the windows yesterday and today and shut the air off, yeah!

5. Enjoying reading the 2nd book in the series of The 5th Wave, borrowed from the library.

6. Daughter and I checked out a new thrift store by our house a St. Vincent DePaul store, didn’t buy anything, prices seemed high to me.


Beth Anne June 29, 2016 at 9:04 am

Forgot to mention I won some really exciting tickets to a concert next week for my daughter and I at the former home of one of the auto barons. We will have hor devours before and and a chance to tour the home, so excited!


PaperCraneFarm June 29, 2016 at 4:58 pm

My husband’s chiropractor has a “cash payer” rate because many plans here in MA don’t include chiropractic care. Perhaps call yours and inquire if they offer something similar?


Oregon Guest June 30, 2016 at 9:48 am

Would like to clarify that the Harkin Amendment to the Affordable Care Act levels the playing field somewhat for providers who have previously been discriminated against by the AMA (Wilk v. AMA is nice bedtime reading!), insurance companies, etc. “Spinal adjustments” were not classified as one of the 10 Essential Benefits in the ACA (bummer), but Harkin prohibits insurance plans from continuing to discriminate based on provider type if that provider is operating within the scope of his practice — what this means is that when you go to a DC, exams (an Essential Benefit) will be covered and any Outpatient Rehabilitation (therapeutic ultrasound, therapeutic exercises, etc.) (also an Essential Benefit) will be covered if performing exams and any outpatient rehab codes/services are part of that provider’s scope of practice (so maybe $60 of a $200 bill won’t be covered, but the rest is required to be). Self-funded groups seem to continue to get away with refusing to comply with Harkin, and some states continue to allow grandmothered/transitional plans which in effect delays Harkin, but those are topics for another day and another forum. So if your insurance company says, “Sorry, ‘chiropractic’ isn’t covered on your plan , inquire further — ask if they mean “spinal adjustments” aren’t covered but other things like exams, rehab codes, etc. are. It’s not to their benefit to clarify this so you can use the insurance benefit you’re paying for!!! (and doctors can get into hot water with the OIG for cutting rates, giving away free services, just by the way — that’s also a very complicated issue and not the “just ask for a discount” message that the media portrays). Awesome post, Katy!


Lide June 29, 2016 at 4:25 am

1. Downloaded 5 free books to my kindle this week from
2. Went to Sam’s Club & bought only what I had on the list – this is an amazing accomplishment for me!
3. Borrowed a friend’s trailer to pick up the last shipment of siding for our house- no delivery fee. Had to talk to the manager to get our “pallet fee” refunded – apparently Menards charges the full fee upfront but only returns the price of the lumber in the pallet when you return it. We ended up getting our full refund but will definitely be mindful of this policy in the future.
4. Shopped the local grocery store for sale items; had manufacturer’s coupons for most of them.
5. Bought a couple boxes of stuff at an auction – found several useful items for our house & our daughter took several of them also. New blender, crockpot, etc. Also had a bunch of silverplated flatware – took out several that I liked to use in my lunchbox -no more plastic forks!! All the stuff we didn’t want will go to goodwill.


Jennifer June 29, 2016 at 4:53 am

1. Just got home from vacation yesterday. We searched for the best price for gas on our way home and filled up. We also sipped on bottles of icy water that we froze in the freezer before leaving.
2. I found 35 cents at the pool, 20 cents in the condo, and several pennies here and there. I guess people lose change a lot at the beach.
3. We didn’t use the miniature bottles of dish liquid and laundry detergent packets because I brought some from home so I took that plus the provided roll of paper towels back home with me.
4. We found some random beach toys people had left on the beach and added those to our collection of free beach toys to put up for the next trip. We also deflated our swim toys to take back home. It is appalling how many people throw those away when they leave.
5. I was exhausted after getting home last night and unpacking so our meal was ice cream. Not healthy but sooo good, helped me avoid takeout, and it filled the space.


Mrs. Picky Pincher June 29, 2016 at 5:08 am

I’ve fallen for the Costco trap plenty of times! Go you!

This week:

1. I did buy a few items from Amazon, but it was only after two weeks of waiting to purchase them. We’re dramatically under budget this month, and I took advantage of that by getting high quality items that will last me all year. Yay conscious consumption!

2. I baked a few loaves of bread with a new recipe. Ciabatta will be the death of me! Anyway, the King Arthur recipe worked out great, so that’ll be my go-to from now on.

3. This weekend we’re visiting Mr. Picky Pincher’s parents. Instead of going out to eat before leaving, we’re preparing a meal at home to save money.

4. I went through my closet and started a donation pile. I’m trying to build up to having a capsule wardrobe!

5. We rented several movies and books from the library last night. I need to get my butt in gear to read ten books in three weeks! Eek!



Susie's Daughter June 29, 2016 at 3:46 pm

I had to look up capsule wardrobe! My aunt (now in her early 80’s) once described her goal in her professional wardrobe as being able to get dressed in the dark and still look put together.


Jill June 29, 2016 at 5:39 am

1.We don’t have Costco where I live, but my Sam’s membership was up for renewal. My husband and I did the math and decided to keep it.(The original membership had been through Groupon and was for a plus membership but I was able to downgrade to the savings membership.)
2.On my way to renew my Sam’s membership, I heard a weird noise and there was a nail in my tire. I was able to have it repaired – no charge – at Sam’s as that is one of the perks of membership. Yay!
3. I lost the doohickey which transfers photos on an SD card to my computer about 3 weeks ago. I was about to give up and get a new one when I saw it peeking out from under a chair. No new purchase necessary.
4. I am staying home for the next 3 days – preparing for company and cleaning. Staying home = no money spent.
5.Babysat my great niece and my nephew gave me a few huge bottles of wine that they don’t drink leftover from their wedding.


Carla June 29, 2016 at 6:13 am

1. Dh needs compression socks. We are going via the more complicated route with a prescription in, doctors notes, and so on in able to have these covered. More work, but in the end we’ll definitely save a chunk of change!
2. I moved over some $$ sitting in my Paypal account from my sewing/pattern sales and right into my savings account.
3. Kids asked for snacks from the store today, I said ‘no’ as we’ve already used up this week’s budget!
4. We’re hitting the library for a stack of books this afternoon!
5. We’ll spend the afternoon at the park enjoying the sunshine, cooler temps and playground equipment for more free fun!


jennifer June 29, 2016 at 8:10 am

3. I always keep snacks in my purse and bring refillable cups with us when we go to the store because they always want a snack/drink from the store. They usually drink/eat on the way and it seems to help curb this.


Bettypants June 29, 2016 at 6:28 am

1. A friend gave me four small tomato plants he didn’t want. Even though I already had four planted, I could not pass them up.
2. Sold three random items on ebay yesterday and today, for a total of $29.
3. Bought a scratched up antique desk last summer for $25. Sanded and painted, sold on CL this week for $125.
4. My office surprised us yesterday with a pizza lunch.
5. I bought a Coach purse and a Coach wristlet yesterday on the local FB boards for $50. It sounds pricey, but they are both in great condition in prints/styles that sell well on ebay, so I expect to make a decent profit.


jennifer June 29, 2016 at 8:12 am

3. Great profit!
5.You should keep that coach purse and wristlet. You deserve it for all your efforts, unless it’s not your style.


Bettypants June 29, 2016 at 12:14 pm

Thanks! I have bought a fair number of Coach purses locally to sell on ebay. There hasn’t been one yet that I liked enough to keep.


JD June 29, 2016 at 6:56 am

1. Lunch today is leftovers that I froze in single serving sizes in the freezer a while back.
2. Bought good olive oil on sale, then nearly kicked myself when I saw it for a better price elsewhere – until I realized I had purchased a bottle that was a third larger than the second one. Ounce for ounce, I had paid the best price after all. Whew.
3. I use the “delay” feature on my washer at night: I load clothes and set the timer so the load will finish just after I get up in the morning. I can hang them out before I leave for work, instead of trying to wash them after work then having to use a dryer. I have a friend who never used the delay on her washer, until I explained to her how I use it. Now she does the same.
4. I cut herbs and hydrangea flowers yesterday and dried them in my dehydrator. The flowers will be a gift for my sister, who loves dried hydrangeas for arrangements.
5. I stocked up on vinegar again. I use it as a fabric softener, as part of some cleaners, hair rinse, to clean my kombucha supplies, and, when mixed with dish detergent, as a spray for my shower walls to keep scum down. It makes cleaning the showers a whole lot faster.


Vickie June 29, 2016 at 11:52 am

I use vinegar as a fabric softener too and to clean in the kitchen, but I never thought about using it on the shower. Thanks for the share!!!


JD June 29, 2016 at 1:18 pm

You’re welcome! I use the concentrated dish detergent, so I only use a few squirts and fill the rest of the bottle with vinegar. I spray after my showers each day. My husband doesn’t ever use the spray, but even so it still makes cleaning the shower walls pretty much a simple wipe-down, especially compared to the scrubbing I used to do. I don’t use it on the bottom of the tub, since I’m afraid it would be slick to step on after spraying.


tonya parham June 29, 2016 at 8:37 am

Unpacking continues….

1. Wanted to go to the Noel Gallagher show in Nashville for 4th of July but tickets sold out immediately back when they went on sale. I waited. Patiently. Finally, I found them for $53 each in a good section. I am so excited! I’ve loved that guy since the 1990’s!!!

2. Did yoga at home this morning! (I’ve never had the luxury of my own practice because there was no room and no way to keep cats out! So I always had to pay for classes!)

3. Finished _Yes, Chef_ by Marcus Samuelsson from the library and am going to get a couple more books this afternoon.

4. Got some spray foam to put in the crevices of the windows– a couple of the windows will need to be replaced eventually but this will prevent cooling loss in the mean time.

5. I didn’t buy airplane tickets to go see PJ in Boston in August.


Bee June 29, 2016 at 12:45 pm

I love Marcus Samuelsson! His positive energy is infectious.


Monica June 29, 2016 at 9:47 am

1) DH and I are excited to switch to the Costco VISA as we buy our gas there for all the cars, tractor and snowblower, and food staples, and low-cost movie tickets (we give them as gifts to the kids). We will not only get back the cost of our membership fee paid out each year, but a few hundred bucks in profit too. Of course we ALWAYS pay the credit card balance in full each month. Have never, ever had a revolving balance on any card!
2) Bought a box of cereal to eat b’fast at work this week, using the free milk here. Cheap eats!
3) Asked a coworker for a car pass to watch the fireworks for free from our downtown office. She secured one for me. Saving $10 from the usual car fee for the event.
4) In-laws treated my family to spaghetti night at the Italian American club last night. My daughter ate for free and we were each stuffed to the gills with pasta and meatballs, salad and bread for $8 per adult. We didn’t have to cook, had a nice visit and shared ice cream from our freezer for dessert back at home.
5) Will work from home this Friday and save 1/4 tank of gas and my sanity by avoiding my 2 hours of commute time! Yay!


Jennifer June 29, 2016 at 10:03 am

1. After 14 straight days above 90*, it’s barely 75 today. Open windows and turned off the AC!

2. My 10 year old and I cleaned his room yesterday. Listed some things on the swap and made $12 this AM, another $14 coming Friday. I gave him $5 from the sale today since it was his Legos 🙂

3. Batched that stop into running by the library to drop off movies and then hit the grocery store on the way home.

4. 2 loads of laundry went on the outdoor drying rack this week. Realized the “quick wash” is half the time and does the same job.

5. Setting my dishwasher to run between 10p-midnight. Ready to put away in the AM and doesn’t heat up my kitchen while I’m doing other things.

6. Work a 4 hour shift at the hospital tomorrow. I go in at 7 pm so am able to eat dinner beforehand.

7. Got my refund from the Apple E Books settlement. $32 into my savings account, along with the money from 2 swap sales.


JD June 29, 2016 at 10:56 am

Oh, yes, I got my settlement, too, I had forgotten! $1.57, which is probably less than it cost them to make and send the check. But I’m going to put it in my savings stash.


BethATL June 29, 2016 at 11:02 am

I haven’t played in a while but have been desperately trying not to spend $$ before we fly to a family wedding so I need to document 🙂
1. Decided that my oft-worn 5 year old dress will be just fine for this wedding (and it still fits). Kids and hubs have something to wear as well so no new clothes is the frugal choice.
2. Packing water bottles and snacks for the plane — kids ate all the “good” snacks already but rather than go to the store, I’m hard-boiling some eggs and making do with what I have on hand. The kids will be fine and maybe they won’t eat the good snacks next time 🙂
3. Just found out that our hotel has free breakfast every day (it’s a mom-and-pop so I wasn’t sure). Yay for breakfast (and maybe lunch too — note to self to pack a soft cooler).
4. Just returned 5 videos, a park pass and a stack of books to the library and picked up some paperbacks in the “free” section to take with us on the plane. I don’t like to take library books with me in case I lose them so I always try to find a paperback that I can trade with another free library when I get there.
5. Printed out my pass for the national parks since I have a 4th grader — this will save us 20 bucks:
6. Eating up some crazy leftovers to compensate for eating out on our trip — no one will die eating one bite of everything we’ve had this week.


Gina in KY July 2, 2016 at 3:01 pm

Thanks for the park link! I have a kid going into the 4th grade next term. I hope this is something they plan to do next year as well.


Vickie June 29, 2016 at 11:15 am

Hahaha! Love the “Dave Ramsey” response, that’s awesome! I get offers for loans and cards all the time and just trash them.
I received a free back massage in Sam’s a few weeks back, because they had someone set-up to sell those chair massagers. I enjoyed the massage and keeping the money in my pocket. 🙂

1) I went shopping with my Library card today. I picked up a book called “Clutter Busting”. I need it to keep me motivated. If I read one like this occasionally, it keeps me on track to get rid of stuff and not to use shopping as a therapy – even in the Thrift stores. I don’t need more stuff.
2) Listening to my free on-line Amazon music while I work.
3) I need more berries & nuts for my morning mix, but I have enough for one more day and decided I can wait until I get paid tomorrow.
4) Finding pennies in my car. I have a cup on my cabinet beside my purse. I empty my change into it and throw change I find into it. Then I later separate the pennies and the silver into different containers.
5) I feel like I need to get my haircut, but decided all I really needed to do was trim my bangs. So I did that this morning after I washed my hair. The trim made me feel and look much better.


Lissa June 29, 2016 at 12:57 pm

I went to Sam’s club a while back and the cashier asked if I wanted a Sam’s credit card. I would save so much $$ on my grocery run. I said no. I stay away from credit cards. She responded snidely that it must be nice to be so well off you don’t need free money. I smiled and left with my purchases. I did not get the credit card.


Carole Z. June 30, 2016 at 11:57 am

I was told the same thing at a Department store several years ago. I just said…Yes, it’s very nice.


Bee June 29, 2016 at 1:14 pm

My FFT are rather ho-hum, but frugal just the same.
1) I too turned down a credit card offer. I went to a retail department store today to buy undergarments — a rare event. I could save 10% today if I just open an visa account with the store. Of course, I always answer no — a frugal habit.
2) I had wonderful lunch made up of leftover enchiladas and water. I did some investment cooking earlier this week which included making a double batch of this yummie and inexpensive dish. The remaining enchiladas are stored in the freezer to be used in the future.
3) I paid my household bills for the first half of July. Since the holiday weekend is ahead, I didn’t want to get sidetracked. Late fees make me unhappy. I used my banks bill pay service, so I saved the price of stamps.
4) My son was in need of some workout shorts, but he is picky. He doesn’t want them too long or too colorful. I found two pairs of Adidas shorts at my favorite thrift store — $4 a piece. Thankfully, they were just right.
5) I did a whole pile of mending while listening to a great podcast.


Kim June 29, 2016 at 1:31 pm

1. Popped into Goodwill as someone on our FB yard sale group mentioned they had seen 4 American Girl dolls for sale there for $15 each. Sadly the dolls weren’t still there but they were just putting out the Target Marrimeko goods. I got the patio umbrella for $29.99, originally $99.99!
2. Did several mystery shops yesterday and today. College fund!
3. Hung a load of laundry to dry.
4. Picked up several receipts left by customers at Aldi. Able to use for several rebates on MobiSave for 50¢ in my PayPal account.
5. Sold 2 items on Amazon for $40. I paid $2 for each item. I also sold 4 mugs for $5 on FB yard sale group.


Carol M. June 29, 2016 at 2:33 pm

1. New husband and I are on a roadtrip. Staying with family and friends when we can–camping instead of motels the other time. Camping can cost half or less of a motel. We found a campsite for $10!
2. Visited Sand Dunes national park for “free–” we get the annual parks pass, which pays for itself once you’ve visited your third or fourth park in a year. Great for campers and road trippers. Got rained out by a ferocious storm, but Colorado storms are beautiful to watch.
3. Only bought postcards, early Christmas gifts, and consumables that we will use (pinon coffee, green chili soup mix) on this trip. Consumables can be part of the grocery budget, early Christmas gifts help me from spending a lot during the season.
4. We stayed on my husband’s brothers land, which currently has no running water. We desperately needed a shower, so we each spent $1 for a day pass to the local rec center to use their showers. Next time we will use the pool. What a deal!
5. Visited with my husband’s cousin at a happy hour vegetarian spot. We got four margaritas, hummus, pita, baba ganoush, garlic dip and sauteed mushrooms for $15 before tax, because everything cost $1 or $2. And they were good margaritas.


Emily June 30, 2016 at 2:48 pm

Woah where is this!? Sounds like my kinda place.


PaperCraneFarm June 29, 2016 at 5:18 pm

Been boring and quiet here.

1. We’ve been picking raspberries every day and getting several cups each day. Of course the kiddos are eating them straight from the plants and from my container at the same time. But as our garden comes in, we can reduce our grocery spending.

2. Froze some peas we picked last week that didn’t get eaten. Didn’t want them to go bad in the fridge but since we had more peas to pick today, I knew we weren’t going to get to the fridge ones.

3. Been packing leftovers for lunch everyday and watching the fridge to use ingredients like lettuce and bread before they go bad.

4. Piling up my next load for goodwill and the library book sale. Decluttering continues.

5. Been using the crockpot a lot recently and have found it helpful to avoid heating up the house. May make another another pot of beans, veggies, rice, and corn for burritos this week and weekend.


Michelle H. June 29, 2016 at 5:47 pm

1. Line dried 5 loads of laundry – this blazing Texas heat is at least good for something!
2. Made smoothies and omelettes for dinner to avoid food waste.
3. Brewed a whole pot of coffee, and put half in a thermos to drink tomorrow, rather than brewing half a pot at a time and using twice as many filters and electricity.
4. Hit CVS to roll my extra care bucks before they expire tomorrow.
5. Cut my husband’s hair.


rjr June 29, 2016 at 5:51 pm

1. Donated a bag of stuff to Savers
2. Offered free moving boxes and packing paper on craigslist and a fb yard sale page. No responses yet.
3. Giving a friend a 101 dalmatians piggy bank for her daughter. My sister had it, we took the coins to the bank machine and there was $37.00 in it.
4. Made chicken tacos from a rotisserie chicken and a jar of salsa.
5. Feeling overwhelmed by everything so I slept late, unpacked boxes and had Wimbledon on. Feeling a bit better.


lauren June 30, 2016 at 12:12 pm

I’m very glad you took the time to let yourself sleep late and recuperate. Taking care of yourself and knowing when your body needs a time out is very good!


meg June 29, 2016 at 6:30 pm

1. Using the back of leftover photocopies from my classroom for my son’s drawing paper
2. Family went into dc to the Smithsonian. Packed lunch, drink and snacks so all we paid for was metro.
3. Sold my hunk o junk to Carmax…gave me a good amount for it despite having major things wrong with it. The dealer where we bought our new vehicle only offered $500, carmax gave me almost 4x that amount.
4.not going to buy from friend’s pampered chef party. I want to support her efforts, but the only kitchen thing I really want is a cast iron, I didn’t see any. I am not going to buy something just to be nice. I can’t let myself feel bad about that, right?
5. Been better about unplugging things when not in use. Not sure if I see a difference yet in my bill, but it’s hard to say since during the summer months we use more energy since we are home more. People swear it does add up. If anything the bending down over and over is another low impact exercise, right..


PaperCraneFarm June 30, 2016 at 1:38 am

#4 – Don’t feel guilty! You don’t have to buy something you don’t want or need!


Karen June 30, 2016 at 11:39 am

I just do not go to the parties and avoid all the hassles.


Amanda June 29, 2016 at 6:56 pm

1. I borrowed a co-worker’s training collar for my Great Pyrenees puppy. I hated to resort to it, but she’s killed about a dozen chickens and almost killed some baby goats. I use it on the lightest setting and she’s learned very quickly that chickens, goats, and 6yo little girls are electrified. She now knows that ‘NO!’ means no!!

2. Went blueberry picking last week with my kids and BFF. My kids and I picked over 40 pounds at $2/lb. I spent the weekend sorting and cleaning, freezing 8 gallon bags for future muffins and pancakes and turned the rest into syrup. We do this every year and we all look forward to it and the kids have some great memories.

3. Farmers market season is upon us and my hubby is cooking BBQ at the venue. All the leftovers are meals for us throughout the week. Yes, by Labor Day we will be absolutely sick of pulled pork, but it’s already bought and prepared (not to mention SOOO good!). I’m sure that we’ll be freezing it in portion sizes and my co-workers have expressed an interest in swapping lunches with me.

4. I found $5 on the ground at the blueberry patch. No one else was there, to ask if they lost it.

5. To save gas $$, I’ve been riding my motorcycle to work. The mornings have been a little chilly on the 26 mile ride at 5am, but I bundle up and take my quart jar of hot tea (warms my back through the backpack on the ride) to drink first thing upon arrival. I average about 55 miles/gallon!!


Elizabeth June 29, 2016 at 7:17 pm

1. Sold three pairs of shorts that I bought last year because they were too big (yea!) and made $26 (double yea!).
2. Found a Greek salad kit at Meijer marked down for $1.43 from $6. It had fancy olives, feta, peppers, etc. mixed it with some tomatoes and cucumbers that were kind of past their prime for a nice little Greek salad for lunch.
3. Used bananas that were too ripe to make chocolate chip banana bread today. Used asparagus that was just sitting in my refrigerator to make “cream” of asparagus soup from the Skinnytaste website. So good and only 81 calories per serving. Finished drinking the $5 wine I bought at Aldi to use when cooking a chicken roaster the other night. Surprisingly, it wasn’t that bad!
4. Had a coupon for a free redbox rental so picked up the Peanuts movie and watched it with my son yesterday afternoon.
5. Went to see Fitz and the Tantrums the other night (not frugal) and the woman sitting next to me gave me her extra sangria (frugal…and unexpected!).
6. I really felt like going to goodwill yesterday because I had a 10% off coupon and felt like browsing and finding something I liked. But I didn’t go because there’s nothing I need…and my daughter has been growing out of her clothes, my son is going to need new soccer cleats, etc…I figure the less personal spending I do, the better as we do need to do some spending on clothes for the kids.


Isabelle June 29, 2016 at 7:26 pm

* Vacation is over tomorrow = going back on my diet = cheaper groceries (I just eat less, nothing special)
* Got a vase from a free pile, will put home-grown roses in it to decorate my living room.
* Took the little bottles of shampoo and soap from hotel room. Will use at home.
* Selected a cheap hotel with breakfast/parking/Wifi included
* Gave 20$/kid for their choice of souvenirs. They get to keep the unspent. I was very positively surprised at their money management skills!! I mean, they are only 4 and 6. We visited the zoo, the aquarium, a castle, etc, all of them with gift shops, and the kids were very selective and both have money left. We are slowly teaching them the value of money.

Have a great frugal day!


kathleen June 29, 2016 at 7:42 pm

1. Made 2-week menu plan and massive grocery shop that will enable cook-one-to-eat-now / cook-one-(or more)-for-the-freezer prep of most meals. So that 2-week menu will bless us for much longer than that. Future me will be so happy!
2. Remembered to use digital coupons on shop.
3. Freezer is replenished with individually-packed home-cooked meals for hubs to take for his work meals.
4. While at Costco, stuck to list except for one bag of dried figs, which I didn’t really need, but thought I might use to make a pie eventually. Tonight making a curry dish, the rice called for raisins, but I discovered we were out. I substituted figs letting them cook with the rice to reconstitute. It was great!
5. Went to auction. Looked around. Nothing needed or spent. Left. 🙂


Gina in KY June 30, 2016 at 2:20 am

Let’s see if I can come up with 5.

1. Still packing lunches for work and camp. Using water bottles for the drinks.

2. Line drying the laundry and, on that topic, trying to get my boys to hang up towels for at least another use to minimize washing. This is a work-in-progress.

3. Taking advantage of free/frugal events around the city this weekend starting with First Friday which is basically a free Trolley Hop around downtown Louisville. The plan is to take the trolley to the historic theatre to see an Alfred Hitchcock movie. This only costs $5 and is well worth it in my opinion. The theatre is absolutely gorgeous and we love A.H. movies! This is an annual event and they rotate movie selections (last year was pulp fiction type movies; it’s been a couple of years since they’ve shown AH movies and they always pick ones I haven’t seen). On Saturday, we will go to our Central Park for Shakespeare in the Park (Romeo and Juliet!)-completely free. I’ll pack a picnic so we are not tempted by the food trucks (but if we succumb, it’s local!)

4. Bought marked down yogurt (25c), Portobello mushrooms (99c) and organic baby spinach (99c).

5. oh, no! I may need to use the Lear Jet one…oh, wait, I picked free blackberries at our community orchard. They had already been picked, but still plenty on the vines. (whew, I’m saving the Lear Jet one!)


tonya parham June 30, 2016 at 7:18 pm

Louisville is a great city and I think that sounds like a lot of fun!

I came to Louisville once to see Soundgarden and it was such a pleasant city. I remember I went to TJ’s and spent my birthday money on Two Buck Chuck (only it’s three buck chuck now) wine! Still, It was a fun weekend and I am envious you get to see Shakespeare in the park!


Gina in KY July 1, 2016 at 2:53 am

Yes, I love it here. I transferred for a job in 2010 and have been here ever since (which is saying a lot for a gypsy like me!) The city is really generous in (big!) free events like Shakespeare (and the actors are from our renown acting school so the productions are top-notch!) and monthly Wednesday concerts on the waterfront with national acts (this past one was Hayes Carl and I think the next one is Brett Dennen). And, I am very familiar with the 2-now-3 buck chuck from TJ. It’s not only frugal, but not a bad wine! LOL


tonya parham July 1, 2016 at 6:38 am

There was a place I went– Ramses’ Top of the World Cafe, I think, that was in the cutest area and had a great bookstore next door. I need to find an excuse to come back (frugally, of course!).


Gina in KY July 2, 2016 at 3:05 pm

Oh, yes, one of my favorite restaurants in town! I am a vegetarian and they have a great selection of veg-friendly meals on the menu. The bookstore is Carmichael’s and another local favorite of mine!! I hope you do get to come back and let me know if you need any pointers for frugal things to do! 🙂

Ruby June 30, 2016 at 7:36 am

1. The poly-foam sheets I rescued from the trash box at work last week were immediately put to good use at my house. During a flare-up of plantar fasciitis, I cut out a heel cushion from a sheet of the foam. It’s working great.
2. As usual, packed lunches, tea and snacks from home to work. Wore a mostly thrifted/secondhand wardrobe.
3. After five months at my new job, I was approved this week to go full-time with benefits, which will save us $250 a month on my health insurance that we’ve been paying for ourselves.
4. Because the job requires some dressing up, I’ve had to improve my wardrobe and have been doing so with a combination of clearance/coupons/eBay finds.
5. Sometimes four is all there is.


Betty Winslow June 30, 2016 at 9:11 am

1. Enjoying several checked-out ebooks – free reading and no gas to drive to the library!
2. Remembered to stock up on baking supplies at Aldi, instead of running out and buying them on my regular grcoery run.
3. Took advantage yet again of the personalized coupons and senior discount at Kroger on Wed. Saved a bunch!
4. Finally figured out a way to remember to do the Free Friday downloads from Kroger as well as remember to actually pick them up. I cut out the portion of the ad that mentions it, put it on my computer (which I’m on daily), download on Friday, then clip the paper bit to my grocery list for the next trip. to remind me to pick it up.
5. I discovered Biscoff cookies on a plane trip once and I love them, but they are pretty pricey. Happily, I found a cheaper version of them at Aldi this week!


Bobbi June 30, 2016 at 11:32 am

My frugal five, which are pretty much my routine frugal things:
1. Working from home most of this week, saving on gas and any temptation to eat out (even though I usually pack a lunch when I go to the office).
2. Went to the bulk bins at Winco to stock up on oatmeal, hemp seeds, some spices, sugar, and flour. Much cheaper than anywhere else, and less packaging. I store them in glass jars at home.
3. Shopped Goodwill with my teenage daughter for some summer clothes. She found a dress, several blouses and tank tops. Six items for just under $25. She actually used her own money from a summer job, so it was free for me, but I am happy to have passed my love of thrifting on to her, and she was excited to get so much for little cost.
4. Doing my usual frugal cooking/eating at home: coffee and oatmeal at home for breakfast. Made a big batch of soup last night to use up lots of veggies, and I’ll eat it for lunch for the next several days. Going to make pizza dough from scratch for pizza dinner tonight. Toppings include basil from our garden, and sauce and vegan cheese from Grocery Outlet.
5. Saved $.30/gallon on gasoline with fuel points at Fred Meyer. I usually buy groceries at Winco and Grocery Outlet, but the fuel points still add up at Fred Meyer for the things I do buy there.


Emily July 1, 2016 at 11:38 am

Good for you and your daughter shopping goodwill! I see teenagers there a lot more now; and it makes me happy. My mom always says “I would have never gone into a thrift store”, but I really think it’s her lol! I was always a bargain shopper, and so was she; I’m not sure why she didn’t give it a chance with me when I was younger!


janine June 30, 2016 at 5:07 pm

1. Threw away multiple offers for additional life insurance, credit cards and other proposals that came in the mail.
2. Had lunch with friends but confined myself to drinking water even though I really wanted to order a pot of tea.
3. Passed along to friends a loaf of bread from the wholesale gourmet bread store and a favorite book I found on sale. In the past they have given me a number of items that they knew I was looking for and were kind enough to pick them up for me.
4. Apparently insurance has covered my eye exam! Of course new glasses will
be fairly costly.
5. Passed up patriotic cupcakes and goodies at the bakery in favor of baking my own brownies and rhubarb crisp for the holiday weekend.


Florencia June 30, 2016 at 6:58 pm

1. I’ve been writing my frugal things for the last two weeks in a little notebook I found at my restaurant job a few months ago. It’s great positive reinforcement!
2. I tailored a resume for tutoring jobs and sent it out to two jobs. A lady who’s looking for a teacher for her kids will call me tonight about the job. EDIT: It was actually the dad that I wrote with. I’m meeting with them tomorrow, but he loved that I even know his kid’s teachers. Here I go, another income steam. Wish me luck! 🙂
3. We had Olive Garden Parmesan cheese packets left at work from about three weeks ago. I used them up in my boxed soup and home-made salad this week.
4. I visited my friend that’s stationed out of town at her parents’ house yesterday. She was going to a movie in the evening, but I declined since I didn’t care for the movie. I went straight after work, saving plenty of travel time and gas. We had mate and bread with dulce de leche. 😀 We hung out a little bit and then I went home, beating the rush hour traffic by staying out later.
5. On Monday, I used up two Cafe Rio free dessert coupons (from surveys) to eat dessert out with my mom. We batched errands and got cooled off in the 100 degree heat.
6. I went to get new glasses on Tuesday. My best friend works there and he got me 75% off with a special friends and family sale. Just in time, since I now spend all day at a computer I started getting a lot of eyestrain and headaches.
7. I’ve been working since Monday of last week. My next day off will be on 4th of July. Such a blessing to have the opportunity and the health to work.
8. The usual: Have been taking lunch to work, supplemented by drinks and snacks from there, driving a gas efficient vehicle, no going to thrift stores, being open to agency work. 😀


Rowen G. July 1, 2016 at 11:07 am

1. Sold two Irish pewter goblets (one from an estate sale, one from a thrift store) for a total of $75, about 3x what I’d paid for both of them.
2. I’ve been drinking quite a lot of plain water lately; it seems to be really good for my skin.
3. Really needed another summer nightgown, so rummaged in my fabric stash and made a nice soft linen one.
4. Picked and ate the last of the garden peas. Looking forward to tomatoes, squash and blackberries, plus my neighbor doesn’t want her apples, so I’ll be making applesauce.
5. Baked brownies for a potluck from ingredients I had on hand. There were no leftovers. 😉


Emily July 1, 2016 at 1:58 pm

1. Babysat 3 full days this week, so 3 free lunches.
2. Got hired to dog sit next weekend. Using someone else’s AC and was offered to use their kayaks on the lake they live on. SO excited to do this with my boyfriend, they are expensive to rent.
3. Used my drying rack and rigged drying line (a piece of string in my tiny apartment laundry closet) to dry clothes yesterday.
4. No spend day today!
5. Yesterday went to buy a 6 pack of our favorite beer, saw another decent beer on sale 2/12 (1 dollar each!).
6. Took my bf out to lunch the other day to celebrate the end of his summer finals. We both ordered burgers , and they were terrible. Both undercooked and put on the bun soaked in oil so the buns were soggy beyond belief. I nicely told our waitress who brought over the manager. I had completely lost my appetite and just sent my plate away. They comped both of our meals which I appreciated. I really hate going out to eat and spending money to be disappointed, so I was happy they removed the meals.


Jen@FrugalSteppingStones July 2, 2016 at 5:45 am

We borrowed books and movies from the library and rented movies on Amazon using credit we had.

Just don’t ask me about our terrible eating out totals….


Mariana July 3, 2016 at 10:58 am

1. Used a buy one get one free coupon for a soup at Hale & Hearthy. It was on one of those evenings that I left work really exhausted. No energy to cook. T. and I had the soup for $9.56 for both.
2. I boringly took all my breakfasts, lunches and snacks to work. Two weeks in a row.
3. I went out with a friend to Central Park yesterday. We took blankets and snacks. Her office is just by the park so when we craved a latte we just went to her office to make one. Her office just purchased a $6k coffee machine that makes awesome lattes and cappuccinos. $4.5 saved. Each. 🙂
4. Found some change in a purse I have not used for a couple of years. 78 cents to be exact. 😉
5. Did my own waxing, manicure, pedicure. Tweezed my eyebrows. Not that I usually pay for it but I have friends who do. I spent absolutely $0 Ha!


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: