Five Frugal Things

by Katy on July 27, 2016 · 87 comments


  1. I have a potential buyer for a midcentury shelf that I dragged home from somebody’s free pile, I mailed off my thrifted American Girl doll and I listed a pair of Goodwill Birkenstocks on eBay as I think it’s a better shoe store than Craigslist. I also submitted another Clark Howard article and this Friday will be my third paycheck this month! #collegefund Update: Sold!!
  2. My husband, younger son and I will be headed down to Eugene for a two-day college orientation. Our son will stay in a dorm, but my husband and I will be in a motel, which includes a free breakfast. However, we’ve held off on restaurant meals this month, so we’ll be able to enjoy our time down there without any guilt. I’m thinking the orientation should include some meals though, at least I hope so since we had to pay extra to attend.
  3. I was able to hang two loads of laundry on the clothesline the other day. There is simply nothing more luxurious than line dried sheets! (However, there is nothing scratchier and character building than line dried towels! 😉 )
  4. Pokémon Go. It’s free, it’s fun and it’s getting us out of our routine. Not to brag, but I caught a “Meowth” yesterday.
  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.”

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{ 87 comments… read them below or add one }

tonya July 27, 2016 at 9:18 am

1) Pokemon no go….we have data only on wifi through Republic wireless and my kids were dismayed that they can’t catch them all…
2) Re_reading a library copy of The Tightwad gazette.
3) Leftovers for lunch and dinner today.
4) Paying extra on our car. We almost have it paid off.
5) Harvesting some veggies from our garden.


Beth Anne July 27, 2016 at 9:39 am

1. Just said “no” to the vending machine this morning even though the Rice Krispy Treat was super tempting! Went to lunch early since I figured I was hungry.

2. Ate lunch at home even though fast food was calling my name.

3. Taking my daughter and her friend to see Five Seconds of Summer tonight and will be treating them to dinner. We were pretty frugal last week so will be a fun girls night out. My daughters first ever concert, even spurged and took the day off tomorrow to sleep in and spend the day taking care of a few things. I even planned some money for her to get a t-shirt.

4. Went to Costco with daughter to get gas. Got talked into pizza slices and ice cream but did say no to the Apple Pie that looked soooo good. We got several samples as well (daughter called them our appetizers :-)). Have you tried their cheese cakes? Had a sample and yet again told daughter no, would have turned into apple thigh and cheesecake bum, lol. 😉 Did buy a nice container of strawberries.

5. Frugal Win/Fail: MAJOR cleaning/clean out at our house this week. Boxed up several things for garage sale/thrift store but also managed to throw things out with just a minimum quam which throwing things out is always a major dilemma for me. I should have lived during the leaner times, I would have been in my element! Several things I had been saving because I was going to “fix them” or have them “fixed” etc., etc. Many items have been sitting around for several years waiting to be fixed – decided enough is enough and tossed them! I also tossed crayons etc., which I know they could be saved for melt down projects, or I could have tried to donate some where but again – when is enough enough? I work three jobs and time is extremely limited. Definitely a NCA fail.


Beth Anne July 27, 2016 at 9:41 am

Forgot to mention I earned a $25 Paypal card through Swagbucks, yeah!


jennifer July 27, 2016 at 10:13 am

5. I struggle with the exact same issues you do, so frustrating.


jennifer July 27, 2016 at 9:59 am

I consider line dried towels free exfoliation. Think of it as a spa treatment!

1. I got free clementine from Kroger and $2.50 off the Hissho sushi I got for my lunch with my Kroger card. Still a splurge but sooo worth it.
2. We ate cereal last night. I wasn’t up to getting my kitchen hot and I avoided take-out. My girls gobbled it up like it was dessert, I guess sugary cereal practically is dessert. At least the milk was kinda healthy.
3. I got my daughter a pack and play, for her baby that’s due in February, at a yardsale for $10. It looks like new but it smells like pet urine..whomp, whomp. I sprayed it good with the water hose and let it sit outside for awhile. If that doesn’t work I may try vinegar or a baking soda scrub. I’m thinking it may have been used for a pet instead of a baby.
4. My kids have been swimming everyday and I noticed my laundry pile has been a lot bigger. They were using a new towel each time, gah! I now have them hanging their swimsuits and a towel outside on a hook and they will keep using that same towel. I really have to keep an eye on my kids. My 4 year old was squirting about 2 inches worth of toothpaste each time before I realized it. I just had to spend a little time re-educating her how to do it correctly. She is at the age where having to do small tasks using both hands is a little awkward.
5.I don’t want to wish my life away but the oppressive Mississippi heat is rough so I am hoping for an early autumn. My air conditioner constantly runs. To help keep the house cooler I have been making crock pot meals and sitting my crock outside, up high, where the dogs can’t get it. Tonite we will have salsa chicken which is simply chicken breasts or thighs with a jar of salsa poured over top and cooked all day in the crockpot. This is an easy, frugal, and low calorie recipe that keeps me from heating up my kitchen.


Bee July 27, 2016 at 1:52 pm

I understand your number 5 completely. The heat and humidity zaps my energy. I find myself wishing for cooler days. This year the heat seems especially brutal in the South — and many other places in the US.


Susie's Daughter July 27, 2016 at 2:46 pm

3) You might give Nature’s Miracle a try? It’s an enzyme liquid that gets rid of pet odors. I love the stuff and bought the mega bottle on Amazon a while ago since it is also used liberally in our household for kid pee accidents and super smelly gym clothes (soak before washing).


Gina July 27, 2016 at 4:15 pm

I agree – Natures Miracle works wonders with pet accidents/odors.


Denise July 28, 2016 at 2:06 am

I don’t actually know what a pack and play is, but could it go in an empty dishwasher for a hot cycle?

Jennifer July 28, 2016 at 5:05 am

Never heard of natures miracle, I will look into that today.

Jennifer July 28, 2016 at 5:10 am

Thanks for the suggestions! Denise, a pack and play is a playpen for babies that folds up smaller for easy travel. It does have a bottom that fits into the playpen that may fit in the dishwasher but I’m not sure that it’s not made of wood or particle board on the inside so I probably won’t risk it.

Emily July 28, 2016 at 4:00 am

Hear you on the southern heat probz! I’m terrified to see my electric bill next month. Even setting my thermostat to 77 my AC runs almost non stop!


Jennifer July 28, 2016 at 5:12 am

I know, August is gonna be a doozy.


JD July 27, 2016 at 10:19 am

1. I’m wearing a new-to-me thrifted shirt to work. I paid $2 for it and it looks brand new.
2. I’m going shopping on Thursday at a grocery store that gives a 5% discount to shoppers 55 and older on Tuesday and Thursday, on everything but beer. I qualify and they carry some things I can’t find elsewhere, so off I go. I’ll watch for sales and see if I can use any coupons as well.
3. Thanks to a commenter here remarking on the difference a good brush made, I switched brushes, back to a nice natural bristle brush my daughter had bought me years ago and which I’d almost forgotten about, from one of those plastic spike-y brushes. Maybe it’s my imagination, but I think that I’m seeing less fallout. I’ve been brushing thoroughly twice a day, distributing the natural oils, and my hair seems shinier, too, with no fancy products needed.
4. Our pear tree developed cedar rust a few years ago which destroyed each crop since. This year, though, it seems that the rust is lessening and we actually are getting quite a few clean pears. We have enough to use fresh and put up as well. We were told we’d need to rent a lift and have the tree sprayed, but we just held off and I’m glad we did.
5. I moved some more money to savings. My home improvement fund is slowly growing, by my watching my spending more carefully.


JD July 27, 2016 at 10:57 am

Forgot to add:
I realized as I was reaching work (outside of town) that I’d forgotten my deodorant, which is not good in this Florida heat wave! I was ticked that I’d have to run to town at lunch to buy another one when I had plenty at home, or drive all the way back home, wasting time and gas, to use mine there, when I remembered I had hand sanitizer with lavender essential oil in it in my purse. Yup, I applied a little sanitizer, then refreshed after lunch to be safe, and so far, I’m fresh as a daisy and smell only of lavender. So I’m a little crazy, oh well; I spent no money and wasted no time or gas.


lauren July 27, 2016 at 12:45 pm

Have definitely done that before. Have also sprayed myself with the office air freshener when having a REALLY bad day and forgetting the deodorant at home. Be careful with the hand sanitizer near your clothes or shirts though, it does sometimes take out the color or stain it!


Julie C July 28, 2016 at 7:57 am

I keep an extra stick of deodorant in my desk just for those occasions when I forget to put it on.


tonya parham July 30, 2016 at 8:22 am

I sometimes use baking soda– just a little on damp armpits– and if I have forgotten my other, I can get baking soda for .50 and will use it at home.

Baking soda is great because you can use it as deodorant, toothpaste (it’s all I will use to brush my teeth), and shampoo and is dirt cheap. (I haven’t had a cavity in years!)


Krystal July 27, 2016 at 10:31 am

Far more frugal fails this week, but here’s how we are recovering
1) Our fridge is stocked with good food from our last grocery shopping trip for the month, which took place last weekend. Leftover are being consumed in their entirety.
2) Watering our gardens at night after that hot part of the day and direct sunlight have long passed, saving precious water.
3) Using newly collected water from our new cistern (paid for by the county!) to take care of other outside water needs. Because of our old composite roof, it’s not encouraged we use that water for our edible gardens.
4) Still working through, or planning to, those home projects that just need to get DONE with little to no cost. A lot of family emergencies have tripped up plans to stay home and just take care of the home, but we should be back on track this weekend.
5) Following up on my overdue invoices for my contract work. It’s absolutely frustrating to not get paid on time, and the lack of communication from the other side is beyond rude and frustrating. I’m persisting, kindly but firmly.


Madeline July 27, 2016 at 10:41 am

1. Bought 3 red peppers in “almost rotten” bin at grocery instead of $1.25 each.I am using them right away so no problem. LARGE container of blueberries just 97 cents today. Love me some summer berries.

2. Still eating scraps from refrig and pantry to clear out and reorganize.

3.Found pantry items I can use to make chicken tortilla soup for a friend coming over Thursday.Also using 3 small chicken things,shred the meat for the soup, and a box of cornbread mix all in my pantry/freezer.. entertaining for zero expense.Iced tea, homemade too,pennies a glass. Canned pineapple chunks for dessert.

4. Hate to sew and am not good at it but am sewing buttons back on some clothing I have been unable to wear till I do.

5. In Arizona I hang up EVERYTHING to dry and it dries within the half hour, well, 15 minutes,actually.. quick turnaround!


A. Marie July 27, 2016 at 10:55 am

(1) Another thought about those line-dried (or, in my case, rack-dried) towels: They’ll last twice as long because they’re not getting beaten up in a dryer.

(2) About to enjoy the first green beans of the season here in Upstate NY. Between the drought and the Bambi problem, the harvest will be decreased this year across the board, so I’m grateful for whatever I can get.

(3) Frugal fail/win: The oven in our gas stove has been acting up for a while and died altogether Monday evening. DH and I elected to take the easy way out and just get a new stove. (DH is no longer up to the task of troubleshooting a major appliance, I never was up to it, and the only appliance repair outfit in town that makes house calls misdiagnosed our dishwasher last year.) However, I was able to get a self-cleaning stove for the price of a manual clean by opting for an unpopular color.

(4) The following exchange took place in our warehouse club a few days ago: A pleasant salesman greeted me in the electronics department with “Hey, want to look at some of our new TVs?” I replied, “Friend, you’re not going to believe this, but my husband and I donated our TV to a charity last year.” He was absolutely freakin’ speechless.

(5) And I’m reflecting on the health benefits of giving away the TV: DH and I are probably doing a real good job of keeping our blood pressure down this summer by not watching the news.


Donna Wilson July 27, 2016 at 11:26 am

We use a drying rack as well. We call it our Amish appliance There is nothing like it for drying our T shirts. They used to shrink so much in the regular dryer! Now I put them on hangers, put the rack in the sunshine and they are dry in a couple of Texas hours, with no shrinkage. Plus, they smell wonderful!!


Isabelle July 27, 2016 at 2:01 pm

Right with you on the TV subject. We do own one (old big-box style bought 20 years ago), but we have zero channels coming in no cable, no antenna). The only use for it is for the rare movie we still watch on dvd or vcr, or playing the old Super Nintendo (yes, I am a dinosaur!). Otherwise, we watch Netflix on the tablet. I absolutely love that we are not exposing ourselves or the kids to all the junk that TV offers (commercials, awful news, crazy reality tv shows, etc. Such a waste of time and brain cells). When we watch something on Netflix it’s deliberate, not just to fill our time. Best decision for our family.


Jennifer July 28, 2016 at 5:25 am

We have a huge projection TV that my husband paid thousands of dollars for several years ago. I do not like it because it is so big but he doesn’t want to get rid of it so I make the best of it. I use it for the kids to watch the DVDs I find at yardsales and around the holidays I keep it on a lot with Christmas movies.


Isabelle July 27, 2016 at 2:20 pm

* Now that I am back working full-time, I find it challenging to plan and pack all my lunchs and hubby and the kids, so I’ve decided to cut corner by buying a couple of frozen entrees per week for myself. The thing is that I don’t want to eat crap, and the majority of frozen entrees are full of chemicals…. So I was able to find a couple with only natural ingredients for 3.99 each, pretty cheap (other ones similar : 8$. Too expensive). That said I will try to cook in batches and freeze in lunch portions.
* Exchanged Airmiles (act fast, they are expiring at the end of the year I’ve been told) for free groceries
* Eating what is in season and skipping stuff like 125 grams of raspberries for 3$!
* Not buying new lunch bag or backpack for school. Daughter can use what she has. Same for clothes.
* Making sure the kids keep all the doors and windows closed when A/C is in use (they tend to forget)

Have a great frugal day!


K July 28, 2016 at 4:54 am

I’m so glad I’m not the only one who refuses to buy all new school clothes and gear. A friend just spent almost $600 on his 2 daughters new school wardrobes (7 outfits each)…makes me ill, lol


Ave July 28, 2016 at 9:31 am

Wow. $600 for 14 outfits?! My oldest daughter outgrew most of her clothes this spring and we bought her an whole new wardrobe for $50 at the local thrift shops. Everyone has been complimenting her on her pretty clothes.


Jennifer July 28, 2016 at 3:12 pm

I had to buy a few “new to us” clothes at the thrift store to go with things we already had because my daughter also had a grow spurt. I did notice that in my area( where it’s very hot) that my thrift store had tons of beautiful winter clothes and not much summer stuff. I did find a few things my daughter could wear now but I couldn’t resist buying a few nice things for the winter. I don’t shop much so it made sense to get good stuff while I’m there.

Rowen G. July 28, 2016 at 7:20 pm

I got rid of the telly last year, so I could fit in another book case. (I hadn’t “watched tv” for over a decade, and if I want a movie night, there’s the computer & a dvd.)


K D July 27, 2016 at 11:03 am

1. Gas was $1.86/gallon yesterday at Safeway, since I had earned $.20/gallon off). The savings were for buying a Netflix gift card, which netted me $10 off my next purchase.

2. I cut a few coupons from the last couple of Sunday newspapers and then emailed somebody I “met” through Freecycle to see if she wants to come pick up several weeks worth of inserts. She’ll come by today, they are waiting for her on the porch. I also printed a few coupons through Swag Bucks. I don’t use many coupons any more but occasionally.

3. I am continuing to cook from the freezer/pantry. Last night I baked chicken breasts in a sauce I concocted, using the toaster oven. They were served with vegetables, fruit, and chips.

4. I wrote thank yous to family for hosting us in various ways when we were visiting the area where they live. We stayed with one relative, were hosted at a gathering by a second relative, and a third relative treated us to a day of adventure.

5. I stopped by Aldi to pick up cheap produce after stopping by Staples for their deal on Kleenex.


Denise July 28, 2016 at 2:19 am

I really want to cry. So your full priced gas is US$2.06 per US Gallon??

Have just done the calculations: we pay (in England) (wait for it…)$5.45 per US Gallon. No wonder we all need to stop driving over here!


Jennifer July 28, 2016 at 5:30 am

Omg! That is really a lot. I will not bitch about gas prices anymore. Thanks for mentioning your price. I live in the southern U.S. I would like to walk places more instead of using gas but it’s not feasible where I live. Everything here is far away from each other. I would have to walk many many miles to get all my errands done.


Claudia July 29, 2016 at 6:50 am

Saw a meme that said, “The price of gasoline seems a lot better when you think of it as “exploding dinosaur juice.'” In the Pacific Northwest it’s $2.49ish. Greetings to the country of my paternal grandparents!


Gina July 30, 2016 at 5:45 am

Gas prices vary across the U.S.. heard on the news yesterday the national average is $2.16/gal. That’s what we are paying at the most expensive gas station in Northern Kentucky. The rest of the news story is that gas prices are slated to reduce more this week.


Mand01 July 30, 2016 at 3:59 pm

Petrol prices have really dropped in our part of Australia in the past two weeks. We are paying 99 cents a litre.


Melissa August 14, 2016 at 10:16 pm

I just paid 96c a litre in Sydney, Australia but it was $1.28 a litre down the south coast here last week. I’d love the prices you pay in the US!!

Lisa W. July 27, 2016 at 11:22 am

Can I tell you my Pokémon Go joke that I made up myself?

Q: Why did the Pokémon Go player look in your window?
A: Because she wanted to get a Pikachu!


Katy July 27, 2016 at 11:34 am

Pokemon go back to bed, Lisa.


Cara July 27, 2016 at 11:46 am

Best joke + the best possible response!


Lisa W. July 27, 2016 at 1:09 pm

Better than my kids’ response, which was, “Mom…Just…stop.”


Jill A July 27, 2016 at 12:33 pm

1. My daughter and I made more blackberry jam using the water bath method. I don’t own a canner so we made do with my grandmothers old giant pot that’s been sitting in my cupboard.
2. Used my $10 JCPenney coupon to buy socks that I needed, so .53 for socks.
3. Went to Panera for lunch – frugal fail- and received a free drink.
4. Shipped some more ebay items reusing packaging I had saved.
5. My daughters are also catching free pokemon and no lear jet for me.


Mand01 July 27, 2016 at 1:09 pm

I must have issues, or have grown up in Australia, but I prefer line dried towels.

1. Received our tax returns. It’s all going to remove trees on our property. I’m just taking care of the money for a while. But it was nice to see it.
2. I dragged myself on to our treadmill last night and walked for 30 minutes. We bought the treadmill second hand from a friend who barely used it and frankly, neither do we. But the time has come.
3. Lunch at work was homemade vegetable soup and a homemade scone.
4. Work outfit was fully thrifted.
Four is all I have


Gina in Ky July 27, 2016 at 1:45 pm

I prefer them too! I think they just dry you off much better.


Gina in Ky July 27, 2016 at 1:42 pm

I love the cute photo!

1. We are down to the last two weeks of summer break and decided it was now or never on the city’s cultural passes (basically a chance for kids and an adult to visit museums and other events for free). So, we went to the free viewing of Star Wars at the beautiful ampitheater.

2. Yesterday, we used the pass for a free zoo visit (probably the best value on it as our local zoo charges $16 for kids and $18 for adults). We only viewed a couple of the exhibits due to the heat and the fact some of them just make me sad (another topic).

3. We are also catching Pokemon all around town.

4. Returned and checked out some new library books, CDs and DVD. I finished _Fat Girl Walking_ which was pretty good. It is a memoir about body love and, for sure, loving the body you have can be a very frugal way to live our lives.

5. Found two clearance swim trunks for my boys who both outgrew the ones I bought them last year. Both are adjustable and will hopefully work for the rest of this year and next.


Kimberly July 28, 2016 at 12:57 pm

Sounds interesting! Just reserved it at my library.


pattilou July 27, 2016 at 1:43 pm

1. my mother treated me to dinner out and we had two days of leftovers
2. A nice vendor at the farmer’s market gave me an extra peach and when I said I brough my own bag he gave me a reusable shopping bag with their farm logo on it – I love my reusable bags and don’t mind advertising for them at all.
3. I bought two new large ceramic planters because my poor house plants have been sorely neglected and have become really root bound in smaller pots. They were 50% off and I asked for an additional discount because of a small, barely noticable chip in one. I got an extra 10% off.
4. I also needed some more glass food containers with lids. I found one on the store shelf marked .99 cents and couldn’t believe that was the real price. I took two up to the counter and they rang up a sale price of 3.99 each but the saleswoman gave me both for .99.
5. continuing to go to the library and the craft store to do free crafts with the girls


kathleen July 27, 2016 at 2:03 pm

1. Enjoying a rainy day to stay home and spend no money.
2. I thought insurance premium was due this coming month. Turns out I paid it last month. Yea me!
3. Went searching for a fabric I need for this weekend, but couldn’t find what I wanted. Left store without impulse purchases, and will work on a different project till I find what I need.
4. I gave up on a book I wasn’t enjoying…no disappointment over spending money on it, since it was borrowed from the library.
5. Pasta and Shrimp Salad for supper. Easy, cool, and everything on hand.


Carrie July 27, 2016 at 2:08 pm

1) I ordered about $30 of needed toothpaste, bulk hand soap and bulk dish soap from Grove. I had a $30 credit so my stuff was only $2 plus they included a free girly soap. Yes!

2) I did a review of a book on Amazon and the author sent me a $10 gift certificate

3) I did homeschooling free today with the PreK and K kids thanks to (not a government school)

4) I listed a book on (which will turn into a free book for me)

5) I sent a request to my Secondsies stylist (it’s like StitchFix except for thrifting!)


Emily July 28, 2016 at 4:28 am

Oh my gosh! Just looked into secondsies. Thanks for the tip! What an awesome thing!


Bee July 27, 2016 at 2:37 pm

Pokémon looks to be great fun, but my two adult children are going through 15G of shared data between them. There isn’t enough left for Mom. Unlimited data is another $25.

1) It has been an expensive week. I had a costly car repair today. I always go to the car dealership, and they keep my car running like it’s brand-new. I usually have a coupon for 15% off a repair or service, but today I did not have one. I asked the service manager if I could get the discount anyway. He gave it to me — a savings of $128! Always ask!

2) I had to buy a new dishwasher right before Thanksgiving 2015. I had tried to do without and it just didn’t work out. I am happy with it except for one thing. The bottom rack is adjustable, but it slips out of place constantly and the dishes crash into a pile. I emailed the company today and ask them to replace the rack, I am keeping my fingers crossed.

3) Sometimes I feel like my life revolves around food. I have some food allergies and cook many things from scratch. Yesterday I made a big batch of homemade gluten-free, blueberry waffles for the freezer and a batch of pinto beans for cowboy caviar and not fried, refried beans. I made my meal plan for the rest of the week to use up odds and ends – especially the fresh veggies. I had a fruit and veggie smoothie to use up an aging avocado and roasted some fresh beets for salad tonight. Lastly, I made a homemade chicken pot pie for dinner to use up a pie crust that I had frozen sometime back, Tonight I am making a fresh tomato pasta sauce and will include two uneaten zucchini.; tomorrow night stir-fry to finish the cabbage.

4) I have started to listen to John Muir’s Travels in Alaska on Librevox’s free app. It is a great way to pass the time while cooking.

5) Updated my budget. I have some leaks that need fixin’!


Jill A July 28, 2016 at 1:53 pm

I wondered about the data usage for pokemon go also since my girls only have 5G each. My daughter has barely used any while doing it. She said it’s easy on data but uses a lot of battery. So I wouldn’t let data usage stop you if you want to play. They are having a lot of fun and getting out of the house.


Lazyretirementgirl July 28, 2016 at 2:00 pm

Thanks for the Librevox mention. It is new to me and looks great.


cathy July 28, 2016 at 10:08 pm

I hear you about the food allergies. Both my kids have multiple food allergies, and it’s exhausting. Definitely makes you feel like your whole life revolves around planning, shopping for, and making food. Yesterday I made GF/DF blueberry pancakes for one kid and (of course) made enough for the freezer. Needed a couple just this morning.


Susanne g July 27, 2016 at 4:00 pm

1. Found out I qualify for $20 in vouchers at a farmers market through my county Council on Aging. It’s a nationwide program and you have to be 60 or over and low-ish income. Have to go in person to council office so will ask my neighbor who complains I never ask and she’ll get sick of me asking and all will be well. Program started in July, don’t know which farmers markets are covered here, but worth a trip in my neighbor’s car! (I don’t drive, I would take the bus, 50 cents each way. That’s also a great deal.)
2. Pulled big grass weeds (like three feet high!) from pebbled area in backyard. I rent. Instant gratification! Also trimmed weed tree blocking my view out back.
3. Walked to and from doctor’s appointment (1 mile each way) and didn’t stop for iced coffee either way.
4. Otherwise stayed inside and didn’t spend any money.
5. Deciding on next art project to begin.


Melinda July 27, 2016 at 4:06 pm

1. We have also been playing PokemonGo and just recently I found a $10 bill on the ground by a PokeStop.

2. My middle son is in the STEM program and he has been gone doing their summer program (it is all paid for so no real expense for us and he gets college credit for it…..he’s also only 16). Not only have I not had to feed a growing teenage boy for 4 weeks but he has been having a great experience and learning so much. I am happy that he is coming home this weekend, though.

3. Both of my high school boys (I will have a senor and a junior this year) are doing the fast forward program through school and earning college credit through our local college. The past couple of years we have been paying a reduced rate of $60 per credit for them. This year our state changed the program and is now paying 100% of the tution up to $4,000 + over the life of the program for them (this will include college courses, AP tests, and online high school classes to get ahead). When they graduate high school, they will also be sophomores in college.

4. Used my son’s discount at work to get 2 large speciality pizzas and 4 drinks for dinner last night and there was enough for leftovers for lunch today. It only cost $20 and I didn’t have to cook in this heat.

5. I used one of my favorite apps this past week to do 3 “jobs” which consists of taking a 1-3 pictures and answering a few questions at a store. A quick and easy $12 in my Paypal account.


Dawnelle July 27, 2016 at 5:49 pm

Mind sharing that app? 🙂


Melinda July 27, 2016 at 6:42 pm

Sure. It’s Field Agent. They are great about approving your job within a reasonable amount of time (the longest time is usually over the weekend) but it is usually a day or less. You can also cash out for Paypal at any time – there is no minimum.


rjr July 27, 2016 at 4:15 pm

1. Bought a rotisserie chicken at BJ’s two days ago and it has been lunch and dinner since then. It will make at least 3 more meals. 3 1/2 lb chicken goes a very long way!
2. Making dinner with salad things and said chicken for dinner.
3. Kept the ac off all day.
4. A colleague is moving and let me know she wants to refer her clients to me. I am excited about this as July and August are very slow for therapists and I just opened an office in June.
5. Being very mindful of electricity and water use (always have been) as I am a new house owner and water was covered in my condo fees.


sarah m July 27, 2016 at 5:11 pm

1. interviewed for a very part time job that will pay nicely, and i think it went well. fingers crossed. relatedly, the interview was right before i left for my night shift, so i didn’t pack enough food, and bought a $4.50 sandwich at work.
2. made pesto from garden basil and froze it. will probably make pesto chicken after i get back from vacation.
3. not loving my stir fry this week but eating it anyway since food is food. added some ginger and honey in the hopes of doctoring it up.
4. homemade coffee before work.
5. rebalanced my budget based on spending more on medical stuff. only making small changes, but a reminder to myself to stick within the rules or the budget won’t work. almost saved up for a nice pair of work shoes.


sarah m July 27, 2016 at 5:13 pm

oh! and i got a free $20 starbucks gift card from my building’s management for leaving a nice yelp review. this was a surprise, i did it as a thank you for the management helping me out with making the back gate more secure, but it will cover me for iced coffees for a bit.


tonya parham July 27, 2016 at 5:45 pm

1. I left the air on 77 the last two days. I just had to turn it down to 75. I was cleaning and ugh….I really hate to be hot!

2. Cleaned out the deep freeze. Lots of waste, sadly, but I plan on using it more wisely and not filling it with things I should eat and putting instead things I will eat. (The road to hell, as they say, is paved with good intentions. I feel like many of my frugality fails are because my intent is good, but I just don’t realistically look at what I will do and want to do– especially with food.)

3. I didn’t go get a Bizzard from DQ.

4. I looked for a book I really wanted on line and found it through e book I could only find it online and read on computer. I will either read online or not read. Didn’t order.

5. I didn’t go to Memphis for Indian food and book shopping and I REALLY did want to.


tonya parham July 27, 2016 at 6:35 pm

6. Decided with the wife to pay $100 more per month on our house in order to pay it off sooner.

7. Drank water all day, No soda. Trying to completely cut soda out.


Vickie July 28, 2016 at 7:02 am

I empathize with you on getting too hot – I loathe getting hot and sweaty when I’m working, it makes me very cranky. I’ve decided the lowest I can keep my thermostat is 74 degrees, otherwise I’m just witchy!

We pay extra on our house payment too and we’ve been able to bring our mortgage balance down by about 10K per year by doing that. I’m hoping we can have our house paid off in the next four years.
Keep up the good work, Tonya!! 🙂


Kimberly July 29, 2016 at 10:36 am

#2 – So true about the good intentions. I don’t even want to think about how much food I’ve probably wasted over the years.


IsabelI July 27, 2016 at 9:56 pm

Received my yearly fuel card $575 live in country and no bus service! Haven’t used yet!
Went to Accountant to have tax done and paid with money saved from budget and Tax Office too! They must be happy to have someone keen to pay Tax Bill!
Called in at charity shop and bought stranded sewing cottons for 50 cents! When I counted them found there was 17, marvellous bargain!
Stretched out shopping day as I had called in to buy a few extra things one day as was in town so a saving there and used up things!
Have used up all my WiFi allowance but did not increase because maybe it is only a once off! Have used other means to follow things I want to phone etc. May no have been very frugal but time will tell!


Denise July 28, 2016 at 2:45 am

I am only starting on this path, and could write a dissertation on frugal fails. I have been lurking for over a year now, so it’s time to dive in. I can’t achieve five yet though.

I booked and paid for my first holiday in three years a few months ago, before I really made myself look at aligning life with values. Not saying that a holiday away is always a frugal fail, but this one errr…is.

Anyway, am now on said holiday, in Madeira. Utterly beautiful. It is room and breakfast and I have made one (very small) frugal win: the breakfasts are huge buffets, ranging from local fruits through to eggs, bacon, whatever you want. I decided that I would turn breakfast into my “event” for the day. I spend an hour sitting by an open door, with sunshine and a lovely Atlantic breeze keeping everything perfect (t-shirts but no sweaty-Betty skin), and I just gently eat lovely food till I am comfortably full. The win: I never want lunch and only want a light salad for dinner. Hopefully, that will be reflected in my bill!

The hotel also offers a few guided tours of the building and the grounds and gardens, so I have taken advantage of those.

Rest of the time, I am trying to avoid burning pasty English skin to a crisp, while enjoying sun loungers and parasol – all part of what I have already paid for. Only bought in the UK my Factor 50 sun lotion, duty-fee at the airport, so I saved 20%sales tax.

Ouch. A noticeably pathetic contribution.


Susie's Daughter July 28, 2016 at 4:33 am

Every win is a win! And consider avoiding skin cancer to be a frugal choice also 🙂


Jennifer July 28, 2016 at 5:43 am

Sounds delightful!


Vickie July 28, 2016 at 6:53 am

Sounds like a WONDERFUL holiday, good for you!!

I never consider my vacations a fail – those are what I work so hard for all year long and stopping to pamper myself and recharge my battery is always frugal. Your mental and physical well-being are advantages, so anytime to recharge your mind, body and soul it is a frugal endeavor.
Instead of looking at it as a fail, look at your holidays as investments in yourself! 🙂


lauren July 28, 2016 at 8:06 am

Your vacation sounds lovely, once you’re back can you share what hotel you stayed at? I am trying to plan my next adventure and always trust comments from people that are NOT on travel review websites.. you never know if they’re being paid to say nice things 🙁 Don’t want you to give it away now but would love to know once you’re back at home.


Denise July 31, 2016 at 12:45 am

I got home yesterday evening.

I stayed at Reid’s Palace Hotel in Madeira. Madeira is about 500 miles off the West coast of Africa, although it belongs to Portugal. Everyone speaks English because so many English businesses established themselves there in the early 19th century. I was told by the only American visitor whom I met that it’s a ten hour direct flight from New York, but it is paradise on earth!


anexactinglife July 28, 2016 at 4:46 am

You caught a Meowth? I am most impressed 🙂


Vickie July 28, 2016 at 6:44 am

1) I brought my lunch today, which included a slice of leftover coconut pie my best friend made on Sunday. I ate it for breakfast with my work-provided coffee – YUM!
2) I’m taking tomorrow off and we’re headed to the Zoo. I think we can get a Senior discount. All day fun and exercise.
3) A friend from high school has a neutered cat she needs a home for and my neighbor was looking for a cat, so I’m picking it up on the way home for him. Even though I never ask, he always grades our dirt road when he does his own drive way after rains. When your treat neighbors well, the kindness often comes back 10 fold. Love my friends and neighbors!
4) I just finished a book called Nature Girl – it was hilarious and I think I bought it for $1 at the Dollar Tree. Now I can start on the book I picked up from the Library the other day. I need to drop off an audiobook I just finished, but I think I’ll do that on the way through town tomorrow.
5) I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or a Yacht.


Mrs. Picky Pincher July 28, 2016 at 8:00 am

Let’s see, this week:

1. I’m slated to make about $140 on selling some stuff on Craigslist. Now I just need the deals to actually go through. 🙂

2. I cooked several meals ahead of time and we’ve been reaping the benefits of that all week. I had prepared butternut squash soup and sloppy joes ahead of time, and man, I’m getting spoiled! I could get used to this freezer cooking business, if only we had a bigger freezer!

3. Mr. Picky Pincher changed the oil in his truck instead of spending $60+ to get it changed at a quick lube.

4. We went window shopping for couches last night and plotted how to get our dream couch on sale. We won’t be buying it for another month or so (waiting to close on the house first), but we think we’re going to go in to do a cash deal to save a couple hundred bucks. Mr. Picky Pincher is a mean savings machine when it comes to negotiating prices!

5. I plan on finishing my newest sewing project this week–a fancy cardigan for work. I bought the fancy fabric on sale at Joann’s and the pattern was only a couple of bucks at Walmart. Hopefully I will look fancy and professional when I wear it to work next week!


Ruby July 28, 2016 at 8:11 am

1. This Monday I pushed the Easy Button and bought a $4.99 rotisserie chicken from the grocery store for suppers. It helps ensure that the Mister and I eat a decent meal, instead of just eating ice cream. (It’s blistering hot here in Tennessee.)
2. Have not been thrift shopping in several weeks, as there’s nothing we need.
3. Our son, who is getting through college without loans, made excellent grades this past semester even though he’s working part-time so as to be able to afford health insurance. Mom and Dad are very pleased to see a good return on the investment in his tuition.
4. Made a stock-up run to Aldi late Sunday afternoon, which seems to be the best time to shop there. This saved us $12 on sandwich bread (we stock the freezer with extra loaves).
5. Although I greatly dislike Walmart, did the sensible frugal thing and checked prices at the new Neighborhood Market in our little town. There are a couple things I will buy there, but it’s going to be more economical to keep on shopping at Aldi, Dollar Tree and Food Lion — which gives us coupons for things we actually buy — for the bulk of our food.


Bee July 28, 2016 at 2:20 pm

I personally love having ice cream for dinner. My mother always said it was ok to eat ice cream. Since it was made of cream/milk, it had nutritional value. She was also partial to fruit pie and cobbler. She was 5′ 9″ and never weighed more than 140 lbs. I wish those genes were passed onto me!


Ruby July 29, 2016 at 8:49 am

I love having pie for breakfast when we have leftover pie. It’s no different from any other kind of breakfast pastry. Fortunately, we don’t have it often or I’d be as big as a house.


Kim July 28, 2016 at 12:24 pm

1. Extra Income- Sold a video game and a sewing pattern on Amazon. I have done 25 mystery shops this week. haven’t listed anything on FB but will this weekend.
2. Grocery savings- I have hit the markdown meat goldmine this week. While at Target doing a mystery shop, I found premade cheddar bacon burgers with $4 coupon stickers. This made them $2.99 per package of 4 big burgers(1.33 lbs.) That’s 75¢ a burger so I bought 4 packs. When an associate, that was working in the area, saw what I was buying she pointed out 2 whole chickens that had $5 coupons so they were $2.49. Score! I also picked up chicken tenderloins at Aldis with $2 coupons.
3. Found money report- In the past week I have found a penny in the garage at Target, a nickel at the gas station, 3¢ in a Coinstar machine, 10¢ Euro and a Chuckie Cheese token in another Coinstar, 2¢ and $4.60 AUS in a different Coinstar, plus a quarter in my driveway. I’ve done many mystery shops in grocery stores in the past week so that’s why I found money in 3 different Coinstars. I passed the CC token on to a 6 year old friend who goes there with her daddy on “dates”.
4. Frugal project- I made a portable ironing table for sewing from a wood tv table I got from Freecycle a few months back. I covered it with the some of the foam and heat resistant cover from my old ironing board that bit the dust. I then covered it with a remnant that I got from a drapery company that periodically gives me their scraps. It looks Pinterest worthy and will be so handy and cost nothing but time!
5. Hanging lots of laundry to dry. Today I washed all of DS#2’s college linens and towels to get ready since we move him in 2 weeks from today for year 2. His first apartment!


Julie C 2 July 29, 2016 at 3:46 am

I have also been finding great deals in the food section of Target. 1lb of strawberries for .99 and they were in good condition. Packages of chicken thighs (skinless and boneless ) for $1.29.


Kim July 29, 2016 at 3:48 pm

Our Target isn’t a Super Target with the full grocery store so I guess the stock doesn’t always turn over fast enough. Yeah for us!


Amy Jo July 28, 2016 at 2:13 pm

1. Recycled the juices in my pickle jar after pickles were all gone. I sliced up a cucumber and it has been in the fridge for about a week. They are ok, but not as good as the store bought ones. LOL Worth a try and was a neat homeschool experiment and lesson for my boys. 😉
2. Challenging myself to see if I can buy groceries for less money than the week before, and so far I am down from $100 for a family of 5 down to $75 a week. I love a good challenge and it is paying off for my family.
3. Christmas in July this week has consisted of eating a pumpkin pie and watching White Christmas on Netflix. LOL 😉
4. I found a can of peaches in the cabinet and decided to make a cheap and easy peach cobbler for dessert. 😉 Hubs will be happy happy happy.
5. Using child labor today (FREE) for housekeeping today since they were grounded to 2 days of hard labor and no playing outdoors for being naughty. 😉

Baked several sweet potatoes in the crock pot last night. We ate a few with dinner and I put the leftovers in the fridge overnight. This morning I took them out to come to room temp and I was going to use them to make sweet potato pancakes. This morning is also trash day and you guessed it. Hubs tossed them into the trash and took it out. I didn’t realize this till a few hours later when I went to the kitchen to make them for lunch. 🙁


Rowen G. July 28, 2016 at 8:23 pm

1. My sister’s zucchinis are going crazy, and she is going to give me the “giant” ones she doesn’t want. They will be grated and frozen to go in soups and sauces and breads this winter.
2. I’m still picking my own blackberries. There are more this year than I would have ever expected. (The apple tree did zero, though – it balances out.)
3. House/cat sitting for a friend who has a much larger washing machine than I do; at her urging, took the coverlet and mattress pad and blankets over to her house and gave them all a good wash, then brought them home and sundried the lot. The bed smells lovely.
4. Listed three out-of-print medieval textiles / costuming books on a historical costuming group list; two have been spoken for, and I will ship them when the checks arrive.
5. Found a good sock I thought I’d lost. Not a massive frugal triumph, but I still had the mate, which means I have that pair of socks again.


Denise July 31, 2016 at 12:59 am

I am so jealous about the sock – I am always giving up after a couple of weeks of looking, and as soon as the rag recycling bag has been donated, the other one pops up like an unwelcome squirrel.

Which also reminds me of a massive frugal fail for which I need to be whacked across the back of the head…I had a pair of pearl stud earrings and lost one. I was so upset, but I knew that it must have fallen off when I tootled off to a meeting off site from my office. I checked bags, scarf etc. in hope that it fell into one of them. No luck. So in another fit of pique, I tossed its mate in the bin. Went back to work on Monday, there is my “lost” earring, sitting by the photocopier, where someone had found it the previous week.

I ‘fessed up to my stupidity and a colleague said ‘go to a pearl specialist and get it matched – you’ll only pay for one earring.’ Great idea which I shall do. Not as great idea as not throwing its mate in the bin though, is it????


LisaC July 29, 2016 at 4:54 am

1. Got a payment from, went right to my Paypal balance. Working on paying that off soon.
2. Eating at home with company staying this week, we shopped together and shared the cost.
3. Found a very cheap souvenier/tshirt place for our company, and I didn’t buy anything.
4. Using cloth napkins and making sure everyone sits in the same spot for meals.
5. Bike riding, swimming, visiting free museums, going to the beach in the late afternoon after the crowds subside and the sun isn’t blazing.

Frugal fail: I try to keep the oven off in the hot summer months, my company brought items to cook in the oven for hours. Can’t say no to a free dinner, but it drove the electric bill up with the A/C I’m sure. Can’t be picky when loved ones visit, they are worth the added expense.


JD July 29, 2016 at 7:19 am

#4 I do the same thing. I thought about buying or making napkin rings, but instead I just fold the napkins neatly over the back of each chair, and like you, make sure everyone uses the same chair at each meal. Unless they really mess up their napkin of course; then I replace it with a clean one.


LisaC July 29, 2016 at 7:39 am

We are making an exception for tonight: rib night! 🙂


Rachel H July 30, 2016 at 9:15 am

Visited my daughter and her family with my mother. Did have a nice lunch and dinner out, but otherwise picked up some takeout chicken. Visited a chocolate factory and took a tour. Used the $2 coupon they gave out and bought my husband a box of chocolates. I was so impressed with the recycling program the city of St. Augustine has that I came home and started my own recycling. They pick it up, but I have to take to a deposit spot. Not far from our public library, and I go there often anyway.

Got a free iced coffee using a coupon from DunkinDonuts. Also received a $5 coupon in the mail for my favorite taco place, so will be going soon. I usually only end up paying a few cents for lunch.

My mom and I went to the $1 theater to see Jungle Book. I filled my popcorn bucket for $4 and had the complimentary water.

My husband finally got around to trying to put the clothesline back up, but said he will just have to buy a new one. I have been hanging laundry on the patio furniture to dry. It works.


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