Five Frugal Things

by Katy on November 19, 2020 · 105 comments

  1. I sold a few things on eBay including:

    • An Anthropology mug to a buyer in France. $25

    • An unused pair of Birkenstock arch support inserts. $20

    • Two yards of thrifted Ikea fabric, which is a specific category that’s consistently sold well for me. $35

    • A 1990 American Splendor comic book. $25

    • A midcentury rosewood candlestick. $20

    • A merino wool sweater that required a mend from me. $20

    • A pair of beaten, but collectible Nike sneakers. $30

    • An antique fraternity paddle. $50

    • A pair of ornate silk slippers. $25

    • A 1998 Backstreet Boys concert T-shirt. $60

    • A vintage Revere Ware saucepan. (This link will show you how to identify the vintage pieces.) $25
    • A long sleeve NASA T-shirt. $20

    • A jumble of collectible plastic horses. $40

    • More playing cards from a Ticket To Ride board game that I’ve been piecing out. $5

    You may notice that there’s pretty much zero pattern to what I sell, other than A) It can’t be too finicky to ship, B) I try not to sell anything for under $20 and C) Buy low, sell high.

  2. I summoned up my courage and hit Winco for a big grocery trip yesterday, but try as I might I couldn’t hit the $100 necessary to earn a free turkey. My plan had been to stock up on certain non-perishables if I was close, but since my filled-to-the-brim cart was barely over $60 I bit the bullet and paid for my turkey. We don’t have Aldi in Oregon, which is a bummer as I hear so much great stuff about them, but Winco is an amazingly cheap regional chain that carries all the major brands, features a sizable bulk food section and (this is my favorite part) is employee owned.

    Another thing I love about my beloved Winco, is that they seem to be exclusively located in low income areas. (At least here in Portland.) You read so much about food deserts across America, which are “geographic areas where residents’ access to affordable, healthy food options (especially fresh fruits and vegetables) is restricted or nonexistent due to the absence of grocery stores within convenient traveling distance.” Offering inexpensive quality groceries in traditionally underserved areas? Respect!

  3. I watched a number of YouTube videos from a couple of different side income dudes, (and yes, they are unappealing “dude” guys) who’ve found financial success “flipping couches” as a side hustle. I have neither the upper body strength nor the ownership of a truck to work this into my routine, (not to mention I’m taking the latest lockdown very seriously.) However it did inspire me to unzip and launder the cushions on my own couch, which resulted in a marked improvement. The cushions hadn’t seemed particularly nasty, but they sure look a hell of a lot better than before. I call that a frugal win!

  4. I brought home a free curbside wooden cedar planter and then transplanted the overgrown and leggy sedum into a different flowerpot, I rescued an orange Fiestaware enamel bowl that was rusting away in my father’s greenhouse, I gave bouquets of backyard hydrangeas to all my neighbors and the woman at my favorite taco cart, I incorporated the last dribbles of a large number of fridge items into some meatloaf which not only made it tastier, but served to empty the fridge in readiness for Thanksgiving, and in the same vein as “don’t replace, just clean/repair what you already own” I scrubbed my stainless steel tea kettle back to a mirror finish using Barkeeper’s Friend.

  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or refuse to admit that I’m being evicted from my gold plated apartment in the sky.

Katy Wolk-Stanley    

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

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{ 105 comments }

Five Frugal Things

by Katy on November 13, 2020 · 95 comments

  1. I sold a large number of items, thanks in part to cross posting to Facebook Marketplace and taking advantage of a current promotion where Facebook eats the cost of shipping for your first ten sales. However, I believe this offer is just for people who’ve proven their responsibility with a record of selling and receiving feedback from previous buyers.

    I’d been hesitant to use Facebook Marketplace for non-local sales as it seemed like an extra layer of annoyance, but I watched a YouTube seller’s video where the guy talked about increased Marketplace sales which he attributed to professional level photos, which set him apart from other sellers. My eBay photos are decent, (far from professional) so I thought I’d throw a couple items up on Marketplace to test this theory. I quickly made three sales on things that had been collecting dust, so I’ll continue to cross post even after I’ve burned through my free shippings.

  2. My husband and I drove to Costco to get our printer ink cartridges refilled and then sat in the car listening to the latest Office Ladies podcast while waiting the hour and a half for them to be ready. Sure, we killed a bit of time picking up exciting items such as cat food and litter, yogurt and honey, but there was still an interminable amount of leftover time. Sadly, we called this a “date night.”

  3. I bought a vintage copper and brass Goodwill tray and treated it to a beauty makeover. It really was in deeply rough condition, so I polished it up using my trusty can of powdered Barkeeper’s Friend. (This miracle powder is sent from the gods!) The bright coppery tray now sits on a side table that oddly requires a extra horizontal surface and is now the perfect spot for a steaming cup of hot tea.

    Click HERE to see the before-and-after photos!

  4. I gave away a wooden bench through my local Buy Nothing group, I grabbed a nice Carhartt shirt from a neighbor’s free box, I’m listening to the audiobook of Sophie Kinsella’s Love Your Life through the free Libby app, I sold two huge terra cotta flowerpots that someone had put out for free, (which then inspired me to sell a couple extras of my own) I grabbed a new looking toaster from a different neighbor’s free pile, I treated myself to a lightly used pair of LL Bean shearling slippers on eBay, I brought home and washed an abandoned knit cap, I mended a small hole in a wool sweater which then quickly sold on eBay, I swung by the Franz Bakery outlet and scored my husband’s favorite organic 70-jillion grain bread for a buck a loaf, I was gifted a guitar stand for my son through the Buy Nothing group and I continue to go an extended period without a haircut. I swear my hair will reach my toes by the time this pandemic ends.

  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or barricade myself in a gold plated apartment in the sky.

Katy Wolk-Stanley    

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

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{ 95 comments }

Five Frugal Things

by Katy on October 28, 2020 · 100 comments

  1. My husband and I have been busy finishing repairs and then painting our bedroom over the past few weeks. This is far from a “Frugal Thing” as the project involved more than just a “lick of paint.” (Any Wallace and Gromit fans out there?) Anyway, we finally slept in our bedroom last night for the first time in two months and readers, it was glorious.

    I guess we did save a tremendous amount of money by not hiring out any of the jobs which include electrical wiring, plaster repair and painting. So I change my mind, this was absolutely a “Frugal Thing!” Also, beyond a new sets of sheets, (which were actually a generous gift from my mother) I didn’t use redoing the bedroom as rationalization to buy any stuff whatsoever. It’s actually the complete opposite as I used it as an excuse to get rid of stuff.

    I’ll be writing up a full “before and after” blog post in the near future, but for now let me just share that any project that takes a room from “hot dog” to “dove grey” is a guaranteed winner. Please enjoy the above teaser photo!

  2. I went thrifting to a couple different Goodwills with my college friend Maura and ended up picking up a random assortment of items which quickly sold on eBay. Like this Bushnell speed gun and this 1999 Michael Graves for Target candlestick. Seriously, so very random!

    People in Oregon and Washington are mostly really good about wearing masks and social distancing, so I’ve felt safe the few times that I’ve hit up my local Goodwills. We always drive our own vehicles and then keep our distance while hanging out. It’s a watered down form of socializing, but necessary and responsible in the Covid era.

  3. I gave away a number of items through my Buy Nothing Group including four standard wine glasses, (I’d thrifted four artisan made glasses which were the same as a long-broken pair that my husband and I received as a wedding gift in nineteen-ought-four) a cute leather purse I never wore and then an unused kitchen knife that no one here remembers buying.

  4. My husband and I continue to hit up Su Casa Tacqueria for $1 takeout tacos on Tuesdays, I gave my mother a new-in-package (but thrifted) hummingbird feeder for her birthday, I sold two more pairs of my husband’s old prescription glasses on eBay, I listened to a couple more audiobooks through the library’s free Libby app, (Island of the Blue Dolphins and Evvie Drake Starts Over) I ran into the Lloyd Center Dollar Tree store to stock up on shampoo and conditioner as it’s practically next door to the Goodwill where Maura and I were thrifting and lastly I grabbed two huge terra cotta planters that a neighbor put out for free.

  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or a super disease spreading, debt ridden or vulgar gold-plated apartment in the sky.

Katy Wolk-Stanley    

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

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{ 100 comments }

Five Frugal Things

by Katy on October 8, 2020 · 107 comments

  1. My daughter turned twenty five and invited five friends over for a socially distanced celebration in the backyard. I offered to help and put a tremendous amount of thought into how to create a lovely event where Covid-19 safety wouldn’t be sacrificed in the name of fun.

    I went back and forth on how to achieve this bizarro world goal and finally landed on everyone having their own individually packaged appetizers and entrées. I 100% didn’t want a situation where multiple guests were reaching their hands into the same bowl, so my daughter and I stopped at Dollar Tree and grabbed bags of crunchy snacks, which I then separated into individual portions. (Oh . . .  did I mention that everything had to be gluten free, and preferably also vegan? Sigh . . . ) Luckily we came across Munch Rights brand “puffs,” which checked both boxes. (Okay, this is a straight up lie, as the “cheddar” version isn’t vegan, so I substituted tortilla chips for the single vegan guest.) We also bought a couple packages of those weird sweetened rice krispie cylinders, which proved to be both vegan and gluten free. I then bagged everybody’s snacks into small paper bags.

    I hand rolled massive amounts of sushi, which got packaged into individual to-go boxes from the deli section of our nearby grocery store. Sushi may sound like an expensive choice, (and it certainly would have been had I bought it from a restaurant) but it’s actually crazy cheap when you make it from scratch.

    I chose to bake gluten-free cupcakes instead of a single cake, (The Pillsbury “Funfetti” mix is both A) inexpensive and B) not disgusting) as these too would be distinct items and therefor safer than a single shared cake.

    I know this all sounds bizarre, but it was a massive hit. Everyone thought it was super fun to be handed their own individual food packs upon arrival, which was kind of cute.

    I admit that the bathroom was an issue, as there’s no way to host people without one. However, I kept the exhaust fan running throughout the party, required masks, switched out the hand towel a couple times and sanitized touched surfaces (flush handle, doorknobs, faucet and handles) throughout the evening.

    I don’t want to come across as bragging, (another lie as I’m totally bragging) but I stepped outside at one point and accidentally interrupted a conversation about how I’m “the cool mom.”

  2. I carried an end table to the corner and stuck a “FREE” sign on it. That sucker was gone in under five minutes.

  3. I was going a bit stir crazy one evening, so I grabbed my favorite mask and drove down to the main Goodwill store. The store was eerily empty, as were the shelves which had a decidedly “picked over” look to them. Didn’t matter though, as I figured that I could still wander around and shoot photos for my Instagram feed. I stepped into the kitchenware aisle and spied a darling vintage enamel teapot that looked suspiciously like a CathrineHolm specimen, although with an unfamiliar pattern. Priced at just $4.99 it was worth the gamble. I brought it home and discovered it to be the rare “Saturn” pattern and worth $200.

    Not too shabby for a supposedly picked over thrift shop.

  4. I’ve been binge watching YouTube videos from Laura and Selena over at The Recycled Life, which satisfies the need to give my brain a break from the upsetting daily news cycle, my college friend Maura and I walked around Fort Vancouver together while catching up on one another’s lives, (even hitting the free aviation museum since it was basically empty) I gave away the last of some silkscreening equipment through my Buy Nothing group, I accidentally made an overly enormous pot of red lentil soup, but somehow served it enough times to avoid any food waste and I decided that I’m going to follow CDC recommendations and not hand out candy to trick or treaters this Halloween.

  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or a super spreading, debt ridden or vulgar gold-plated apartment in the sky.

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.
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{ 107 comments }

Five Frugal Things

by Katy on September 28, 2020 · 119 comments

  1. I sold a few things, my favorite of which was a bike that had been collecting dust in my basement since we’d schlepped our son home from college in March. It was my favorite sale, not because of any profit for me, but because it was a nebulous item, as it belonged to my son’s old roommate who’d moved back to Texas in December. He didn’t want the bike sent to him, but it didn’t feel right for us to simply sell it. Instead, my son’s roommate told him to sell it and for the two of them to split the proceeds.

    However, my husband had pieced the bike apart in order to jam it into our overfilled minivan. He finally reassembled the bike, which allowed me to research, test, photograph and then list it. Three days on Facebook Marketplace and my son and his friend both have an extra hundred bucks in pocket, and mama has one less inanimate object in her basement.

    But really, my favorite part of this transaction is that it took a dusty unused item and put it into the hands of someone who both wanted and needed it. As a reseller, I feel that I play an important role in getting specific secondhand goods to buyers, which is vital in a world where the overproduction of consumer goods is destroying our planet.

  2. I used secondhand supplies to mail out all my eBay sales, and for one particular item used a padded mailer that had originally been received by my sister, who then used it to mail something to me. I also picked up a huge bag of bubble wrap from a local business, plus received a smaller bag from my next door neighbor. I thanked her up, down and sideways, telling her that “free bubble wrap is my love language.”

    Without people who give these shipping supplies a second life, all this stuff would go into dumpsters and landfills.

  3. I listened to a couple different audiobooks through the free Libby app that I pay for with my county taxes. I motored through Rosamund Pilcher’s The Shell Seekers, (an old favorite) and then started and stopped listening to a few that weren’t my style until landing on Sunset Beach by Mary Kay Andrews.

    I really don’t have the attention span to read physical books lately, but am easily able to handle audiobooks, which keep me company while I putter around the house, cook and clean, run errands, lay in a fetal position sucking my thumb or work on a puzzle.

  4. My friend gave me enough apples from her backyard tree to make two delicious apple crisps, (Thanks, Lise!) I gave away a tool table, a bag of glue sticks, a dozen or so fancy rice pouches, (again from my son’s roommate) and a box of books through my neighborhood’s Buy Nothing group, I used my step mother’s power washer to blast away the anaerobic stank and maggots that had inhabited our yard debris can, (gag!) and I picked up a frustrating 1000-piece Gustav Klimt puzzle at Goodwill that I’m now assembling to confirm that it’s complete before I sell it.

    It goes without saying that I basically went nowhere and did nothing and ate my own boring cooking, especially during the week and a half when Portland, Oregon was choking on smoke from area forest fires.

  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or a traitorous, secretly debt ridden or vulgar gold-plated apartment in the sky.

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.
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{ 119 comments }

Five Frugal Things

by Katy on September 16, 2020 · 91 comments

  1. I sold a few things here and there, although nothing individually impressive as my thrifting has greatly diminished lately due to the convergence of Coronavirus and the hazardous breathing conditions here in Oregon. (Fresh inventory generally sells better than stale listings.) Unless stated otherwise, everything was sourced from one of Portland’s amazing Goodwill stores.

    Here’s what sold:

    • A large aerial map of Alaska’s Bristol Bay that I picked up at a Goodwill Outlet pay-by-the-pound store at least six months ago. It was part of a large tangle of maps that another customer had grabbed, but discarded this one for some reason. It weighed next to nothing, so I’d estimate that I spent 15¢ on it. It sold locally to someone who travels up to Alaska each year to work on a fishing vessel. $20

    • Another pair of my husband’s old prescription glasses that he no longer wears due to vision changes. (They were Oakley brand, which I makes them more desirable.) This is one of those oddball eBay categories that’s consistently sold well for me. Opticians can fit used frames with new prescription lenses, so this detail doesn’t matter. If you have a jumble of outdated prescription glasses in your junk drawer, you might as well give this one a try. $45

    • A set of darling vintage acorn carved wooden bookends. $20

    • A length of wool fabric that I’d sold once before and had accepted as a return. $45

    • A lot of my daughter’s old Shonen Jump magazines. I give her the money whenever I sell her stuff. $35 

    • A book of Patrick Nagel art that I also picked up at a Goodwill Outlet store. $25

    • A pair of vintage Canoe Muffin ice tea spoons that I plucked from a bin of Goodwill silverware. $20

    • A small golden Homer Simpson figure that’s leftover from a huge bag of collectible figures that I picked up for maybe $7.99 last year. (One sold for $75 and there were probably 40 others in the bag.) The valuable ones sold almost immediately, and these last few ones sell for not much. $5

    • More of my son’s textbooks. I still have six unsold books, but these have been selling at a good clip. I give him the money whenever I sell his stuff. $12, $30, $23, $15

    • A designer purse that my college best friend received from her step mother. She didn’t want it and gave it to me as “Do you want this, maybe you can sell it?” gift. $110

    • A pair of Starbucks mugs that took way too long to sell. I won’t be picking these up again. $17.99

    • A vintage chrome foil/paper towel/wax paper dispenser that took up way too much space in my eBay inventory corner. $30

    • A set of professional level dominos that I somehow both underpriced and also accidentally listed with “free shipping!” ^&%$‰›fl‡fl‡! I didn’t lose money, but I could have made some good money with this sale. Oh well, live and learn . . . $35

    • A Polaroid camera that I grabbed from a free pile. $20

    • A pair of brand new of Solmate socks that were sadly not my size. $17.99

  2. We’ve been continuing to designate Tuesdays as “Taco Tuesday” by grabbing pickup from a local Mexican food cart that sells their tacos for a buck apiece once a week. Although in true non-consumer fashion, I always balance out the cheap cost with a generous 33% tip.

  3. My husband taped a furnace filter over the back of a box fan to create an indoor air filter that quickly picked up a disgustingly satisfying amount of smoke particulate. We already had these supplies on hand.

    For those who may be unaware, Oregon, Washington and California are in the midst of an unprecedented wildfire season, hammering home the fact that climate change is a global crisis which demands which our attention.

  4. I listened to the fantastic audiobook of Fiona Davis’ The Lions of Fifth Avenue for free, as I’d done a free 30-day Amazon Prime trial account which included a single audiobook download, (I cancelled the Prime subscription before any fees kicked in) neighbors have been sharing their garden bounty with us, I borrowed my father’s power washer to clean up our dirty/mossy back patio, and then used it for everything else I could think of, (wicker hamper, adirondack chairs, outdoor rug, front steps) I stocked up on a year’s worth of Bonne Maman marmalade as they were 50%-off at a local store, and I’ve been otherwise been cooking inexpensive meals from scratch that are mostly bean based or soups.

  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or a traitorous, pathologically dishonest or vulgar gold-plated apartment in the sky.

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.
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Disclosure: This blog post includes affiliate links, which may earn you a discount, as well as a small commission for me. This costs nothing extra to you. 

{ 91 comments }

Five Frugal Things

by Katy on September 7, 2020 · 110 comments

    1. My husband and I moved our son down to the college town where he’ll finish up the two quarters he needs to complete his bachelor’s degree. True, his classes are likely to be online this term, but they absolutely weren’t when it was time to arrange housing. This apartment came unfurnished, but we were able to score the previously mentioned free couch and end table from different neighbors. Luckily, everything (including his bedroom stuff) miraculously slotted into our minivan and Prius, so there was no need to rent a pricey moving truck.

      Our son has three roommates, so they can pick up any slack, especially since he provided the majority of the kitchen and bathroom supplies.

    2. My husband and I decided to buy a new mattress and boxspring set, which is a suuuuper annoying purchasing process. We looked on the internet, but didn’t trust a word we read from online review sites, as they’re notorious for overtly false reviews. Instead we looked at Costco, and then finally at a locally owned store that has a trustworthy reputation for quality products and low pressure sales. We ended up buying a queen set that’s scheduled to be delivered at the end of the month, which gives us time to consider repainting our bedroom, which I’ve decided isn’t so much “terra cotta” as it is “hot dog.”

      This was a far from frugal purchase, but it felt good to support a local business, and I look forward to many peaceful nights of sleep. We pinch pennies on the stuff that doesn’t matter which makes the money available for the things that do.

      For those wondering why we’re not considering a used mattress, this is one of my Compact exceptions, especially since I’ve learned about recent bedbug cases in the Portland area.

    3. I found a crumpled piece of paper at the grocery store which turned out to be a voucher for a free drive-through car wash, which may be one of my favorite finds ever as A) Its value was $8, and B) I hate washing the minivan by hand as it requires a ladder to reach the roof. My husband was skeptical, but it was accepted without a hitch and we now possess a clean and shiny car!

      This may be unrelated, but I think that drive-through car washes are super duper fun, and I always joke about how the attendants are “mermen” and the internal bits are “kracken” and “giant squid.” I’ve never been to Disneyland, but I’m guessing it’s pretty much the same experience. Why yes, I may be the world’s cheapest date.

    4. I made broth from a leftover Costco roasted chicken, (which I then transmogrified into a tasty and satisfying Mexican chicken soup) I borrowed my step mother’s pressure washer to spruce up our backyard patio/retaining wall, as well as anything else I could think of, (outdoor rug, wicker laundry basket, concrete steps, etc.) I gave away a set of silkscreens and a squeegee through my local Buy Nothing Group, I made an appointment and picked up a physical library book from my personally curated “Quality Distraction” reading list, I listened to a couple of audiobooks through the library’s free Libby app and I curb picked a lovely brass desk lamp for my son, whose old lamp had broken.

    5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or a traitorous, dishonest and vulgar gold-plated apartment in the sky.

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.
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{ 110 comments }

Five Frugal Things

by Katy on August 26, 2020 · 113 comments

  1. I sold a number of things including:

    • A Thule bike rack that I bought at Goodwill for $4.99 and quickly sold for $75.
    • A stack of free pile law school books that sold for between $15 and $100.
    • A free pile Title Nine exercise skirt that sold in precisely 18 minutes for $25.
    • Six or seven of my son’s old textbooks, which continue to sell every other day-ish.
    • My husband’s old prescription Oakley brand eyeglasses, which are currently on their way to England. Fifty bucks!
    • A $7.99 new-with-tags Queen Bee Creations shoulder bag that sold overnight for $75.

  2. I was somehow able to get my insurance company to pay the $300 to install an anti-theft catalytic converter shield after some jackass stole the catalytic converter from under my Prius. A crime that I’ve since learned has become increasingly common across this great so-so nation of ours.

    Mind you, we still had to pay the $500 deductible.

  3. We discovered that a semi-local Mexican food cart sells their tacos for a buck apiece on Tuesdays, which has gifted us a sorely needed break from the monotony of cooking. Plus, it gives us something to look forward, which is otherwise lacking in our lives right now. We’ve since hit week three of Taco Tuesdays and I’d like to send a ginormous wave of gratitude out to Su Casa Tacqueria!

  4. My son has rented an unfinished apartment for his last year of college, which differs from his previous apartments which only required he provide furnishings and supplies for the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom. He’ll have three roommates, but only one of them is from Oregon. I was able to score a free nice couch from a neighbor who is transitioning her den into an in-home classroom for her sons and I found a great end table that another neighbor had put out for free.

    We’ll pull out his last apartment’s stuff from the attic next week to clarify what still needs to be sourced. We moved him out of his last apartment in a rush last March, and I have a strong recollection that we packed up some dirty dishes.

  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or a vulgar gold-plated apartment in the sky.

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.
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Disclosure: This blog post includes affiliate links, which may earn you a discount, as well as a small commission for me. This costs nothing extra to you. 

{ 113 comments }

I’ve been wanting to put together a fresh “Goodwill, Bad-will, Questionable-will” blog post, and what better day to do so than National Thrift Shop Day? (I know this sounds like I made it up, but I didn’t. I promise.)

I haven’t been doing as much thrifting as last year, but I’m starting to venture out a couple times per week, (gloves on, mask in place) to scope out my favorite Goodwill store. (The one on S.E. 52nd Avenue, off of Woodstock Boulevard.) It’s a perfect miniaturized version of the “Superstores,” so it’s easy to nip right in and out of. Plus, I have a sneaking suspicion that their prices are secretly lower due to their limited floor space.

Seriously, this Goodwill location is ah-mazing!

Ideally I’d be coming across the wonderfully weird items that I rely on to stock my Goodwill, Badwill, Questionable-will blog posts, but lately I’ve been coming up short. All wonderful. No weird. Bubkis, zilch, nada.

C’mon Goodwill, mama needs some weird in her life!

Remember when I found a box of cat cremains back in 2013? Those were the days.

So what have I been finding?

This complete Thule bike rack system for $4.99!

This new with tags Queen Bee Creations purse for $7.99!

This pair of “sample” Nike sneakers for $4.99!

This queen-size Marimekko duvet cover for $7.99!

What didn’t I find? Anything that could be categorized as bizarre or weird. Oh well, there’s always tomorrow!

Do you love thrift stores as much as I do? Do you have a brag-worthy thrift store find? Please share in the comments section below!

For those who want to score awesome Goodwill deals from home, GoodwillBooks.com is offering 20%-off two or more items when you use the discount code LEARN, which is good until 8/28/2020.

Want to know more about Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette?
Check out 
MeetGoodwill.org, ShopGoodwill.com and GoodwillJobConnection.org
to learn more about the important services that they provide for our community.

Katy Wolk-Stanley

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

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Five Frugal Things

by Katy on August 8, 2020 · 107 comments

  1. I sold just a couple of things, including:

    • An extra Oakley accessory kit that went with an old pair of my husband’s work sunglasses.

    • One of my son’s accounting textbooks.

    • A set of my son’s Mega Man electronic game chips.

    Actually, that’s all that sold. Lucky son.

  2. I went for a masked walk around the neighborhood with my friend Dezsea. In the before times we might have gone out for coffee or lunch, so I suppose this falls under the umbrella of “frugal activities,” even though there’s a deeply sad back story.

    However, she did call me up the next day asking if I wanted “a gallon of milk and a bag of potatoes.”

    Umm . . . let me think that over for a bit. Just kidding, of course I jumped at the offer and gladly accepted her generosity. Milk is super friendly to being frozen for a future date, you just have to pour off a bit extra to make room for expansion.

  3. I drove to my secret spot for wild blackberries, making sure to wear a long sleeve shirt, long pants and closed toe shoes. (Those thorns are no joke!) Unfortunately, Oregon’s dry hot summer resulted in mostly shriveled up berries, although I did find some plump ones growing the shade. I’ll probably go back in a couple days as we’ve had some rain and cooler temperatures, which should result in sweeter juicier berries.

    However, even lesser berries are still delicious berries. Plus, free is my very favorite price!

    For those who might enjoy this detail, the “Oregon Ducks” hat in the above photo was purchased at a pay-by-the-pound Goodwill Outlet store. (So . . . maybe 15¢?) That school has enough of my hard earned money, thank you very much!

  4. I used Fred Meyer (Kroger) coupons for broccoli and eggs, my single pair of Birkenstock sandals are wearing out, so I found a replacement pair on eBay for $34.99, (I then clicked through from Swagbucks, I used my own eBay referral code and messaged the seller to see if they’d use a $8.40 flat rate envelope instead of the $15.05 flat rate box) I fed my neighbors’ cat while they were out of town, I gave away two tubes of toothpaste on my Buy Nothing Group as I’d accidentally bought the spicy “Cinnamint” flavor, my husband signed up for a free YouTube TV trial, which is allowing us to finally watch the final season of Schitt’s Creek, I finished the last of a loaf of my father’s sourdough bread, (which I slice and store in the freezer) and I sat on the couch screaming into a second hand pillow.

  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or a vulgar gold-plated apartment in the sky.

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.
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