Five Frugal Things

by Katy on February 23, 2016 · 57 comments

Free rocking chair

  1. I nabbed a free antique rocking chair that someone had put out for free. It was a bit damp from being out all night in Oregon, but I gave it a through wipe down and it’s currently sitting on my covered porch to air out a bit. It’ll be easy enough to replace the seat cushion fabric, (hello, staple gun!) and I’ll likely just choose something classic like velvet. I’m not sure whether I’ll keep it or sell it for the ol’ college fund yet, but for now I’m just enjoying it. And yes, it’s nice and sturdy!
  2. A Facebook friend of mine posted that she and her husband were clearing stuff from their home to make room for her mother-in-law to move in. Included was a full-size mattress and boxspring. My older son has a twin bed in his room, but there would be room for a larger bed, so I contacted my friend. We already have a nice antique full-size bed frame in the basement, (which we got for free a million years ago.) This will help transition my son’s room into a more useable space now that he no longer lives at home. I’ll be picking it up this afternoon!
  3. I went to my local DMV to renew my expired license yesterday, and was happy to discover that there was no late fee. Whew . . .
  4. I prepared a delicious burrito meal last night that included slow cooked black beans, caramelized onions, sale Tillamook cheese, lettuce, avocado and homemade salsa. I may have had seconds.
  5. I cut forsythia for a flower arrangement, my doctor gave me a year’s worth of free medication, I posted a few things on my buy-nothing group and 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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{ 56 comments… read them below or add one }

Carol in CT February 23, 2016 at 10:03 am

Beautiful chair!


MW February 23, 2016 at 10:15 am

1- Snagged a free set of shorts for my ever-growing older son at our local Buy Nothing potluck.
2- Made bread and flavored butter for the potluck, we’ve been enjoying toast from the left overs.
3- Rocking a $0.69 striped sweater from Salvation Army. More springy than my usual black or gray, but warm.
4- I spent time last night working on my taxes, and will try to finish it tonight. We’ve always paid to have our taxes done (always very reasonably priced, but wherever we can save!).
5- Still bringing my lunch every day, taking the bus to work, and making my own morning coffee in an old gold filter drip system.


Juhli February 23, 2016 at 10:46 am

Gorgeous chair! Just a few today.
1. Carefully checking medical bills against insurance statements and found we over payed one doctor. Will be calling and asking for a refund.
2. Cancelled an expensive exercise session for next week and scheduled into a cheap group class.
3. Two days in a row I had to throw out dog food as “sugar ants” invaded her bowl. I sprayed the outside of the kitchen door but am not confident that will solve it so I am just giving her a short time to eat now before I pick up the food. She will get used to eating on a schedule for a while instead of free access.
4. Making a short grocery shopping list for tomorrow with only things we actually need – and planning to stick with it.


Jennifer February 23, 2016 at 11:58 am

3.Someone once told me that if you put a line of Vaseline around the bowl the ants won’t cross it. I have never tried it but it’s a cheap fix if it works.


Christine February 23, 2016 at 8:47 pm

I line of ground cinnamon is supposed to work too. Has anyone else heard that?


Florencia February 24, 2016 at 9:35 am

I did. I used plenty. As it becomes stale due to air, ants get used to it and try to take it as food. Make sure to replace it if this happens.


Heidi February 23, 2016 at 3:30 pm

I too had problems with ants and pet food bowls. The only thing I found that worked was a pie tin with water in it and then I set the food bowl in the pie tin bowl.


Bonnie February 23, 2016 at 5:49 pm

Sprinkling baby powder around the bowl should prevent ants from getting in. (Works at doorways, too.)


Juhli February 24, 2016 at 2:39 am

Wow, thanks for all of the ideas!


Joy February 29, 2016 at 8:24 pm

Our Pest control guy told us to find their entrance. I thought for sure he had lost it until I walked around the outside of out house w/ him. Anywhere bushes, etc touch the side, porch, steps, etc is the route they take. We started trimming our shrubs away from the house and porch and guess what….no more ant problems! We used to have one battle a year with them for a couple of weeks….no more!


Jennifer February 23, 2016 at 11:05 am

1. Hit senior day at Goodwill for 50% off, I am not a senior but my MIL is ! 😉 If that’s wrong, I don’t wanna be right!
2. Purging and organizing my fabric stash (quilter) and cutting scraps into precuts so I will be more likely to use them.
3. Staying home a lot and not going to many stores.
4. Listening to Dave Ramsey podcast while cleaning.
5. Trying to save a lot for a new roof.


Jennifer February 23, 2016 at 11:55 am

I do love the chair! I really think I would keep that one for myself. You can always sell it later if you get tired of it.

1. Serving my kids quiche for breakfast each day. I made it with frozen ham from Christmas and other bits of random veggies and I had hanging around. I also use a no rolling required, press into the pie dish, pie crust recipe that I really like. So I can make a super quick crust in minutes with just a few simple ingredients I have on hand. I will never buy pie crust again.
2.Staying out of the stores for the time being. We are stocked up on everything for the present.
3.Taking care of my 3 year old daughter. She has a sore throat and cough. Hoping it’s just a simple cold at this point. I have a friend who takes her kids to the doctor for every sniffle which is expensive. However, if my little one doesn’t improve soon we will definately be going to get her checked out.I hate for the kids to be sick but I enjoy the extra cuddle time sickness brings.
4.I’m planning a trip for my husband’s birthday. I am torn between bringing the kids or letting them stay with my mom. Bringing the kids always costs a little more and they love being with my mom. I always miss them terribly if I don’t take them and my husband and I hardly ever get to be alone together. Mommy guilt drives me bonkers!
5. We have tons of chapsticks laying around my home that my kids received as gifts. The weather has caused my cuticles to be terribly dry. Chapstick is perfect for this! It seems to work best when you smear it on right after washing then drying your hands.I have just one I use specifically for this purpose. I just wrote on one with a sharpie so I wouldn’t mix them up.


Katie February 24, 2016 at 11:29 am

What is your recipe for pie crust?? That sounds like an awesome idea!


Jennifer February 24, 2016 at 12:46 pm

No roll pie crust recipe

2 cups All purpose flour
1 tsp sugar
3/8 tsp baking powder
7 TBsp veg or canola oil
1/4 cup cold water

Mix dry ingredients. In a separate bowl mix oil with water then pour into dry ingredients. Stir with fork till moistened. Pat dough across bottom and up sides of pie pan, crimp edges and fill as desired then bake as usual. Yields one 9″ no roll pie crust.

I have used this crust several times and it’s always perfect and easy. I press mine pretty thin into the pie pan and it always cuts well, is flaky, and stays together well. I have also made it when I was out of baking powder and it turned out exactly the same so sometimes I just leave it out. It works with self rising flour too but the crust is a little thicker and I didnt like it as well. I used butter when I was out of oil and it was super delicious, also. I love this recipe because it’s just really easy, I always have most of the ingredients, and the mess is minimal. I hope you will enjoy it as well!


Jennifer February 24, 2016 at 12:49 pm

And a heaping 1/2 tsp of salt!!!!! Sorry I forgot that when I was rereading my recipe.


Another Jennifer February 23, 2016 at 12:00 pm

I am changing my screen name to Another Jennifer since there are several of us, lol.


A. Marie February 23, 2016 at 12:02 pm

(1) Great score on the chair, Katy! I’d keep it if I were you (but then again, I understand that you have a college fund to think about).
(2) Advice from an older woman to all the folks who commented on the previous post about waiting for a “good looks” day to get a license/passport photo made: Don’t. Official photos are unflattering by definition. As Erma Bombeck used to say, “If you look like your passport photo, you’re too sick to travel.”
(3) Made a Portuguese kale soup yesterday, with ingredients including homemade chicken stock, the last of my 2015 homegrown garlic, a bag of my frozen 2015 homegrown tomatoes, and three leaves of curly kale from the two plants STILL furnishing usable kale in my garden. (And remember I’m one of “God’s frozen people” in Upstate NY!!)
(4) Speaking of being God’s frozen people, we are awaiting yet another dump of mixed snow/freezing rain. Preparing for it by emptying compost bucket, gassing up vehicles, etc.
(5) Added two 1-qt containers of leftover stock to my freezer. This not only occupies empty space as I use meat and vegetables from the freezer, but gives me stock to work with in later cooking.


Susan February 23, 2016 at 4:07 pm

What kind of kale is that??? And did you keep it covered once winter set in??


A. Marie February 24, 2016 at 2:20 am

The kale is Dwarf Blue Curled Vates, which is widely available. And, no, the plants aren’t covered (just planted on the side of the house that gives it some protection from prevailing winds).

I’m not saying that the plants are still actively growing, or that some of the bottom leaves haven’t gone bad–but there are still usable leaves on the top two-thirds of each plant. This is the main reason I love curly kale. (Tuscan kale has more “snob appeal” at the moment, but it isn’t nearly as winter-hardy.)


Krystal February 23, 2016 at 12:28 pm

1) Made homemade chicken stock with leftover bones and innards for recipes this week–will freeze the leftovers. Saved $$ from buying a box or two at the store, which would wind up possibly being recycled (not very zero waste).
2) I have a volunteer meeting downtown later during rush hour/Sounders game traffic. Taking the bus to and from (early and later to save on peak fares). Saving the gas and parking money, and stress from driving in the god-forsaken traffic. Our car is at 161k miles and we really don’t get excited about buying a new car (we kind of hate car ownership). Our transit isn’t great in our neighborhood, but luckily the major bus in our neighborhood goes right downtown. I already have pre-paid fares loaded on my card anyhow! I’ll write off the bus fare for my taxes too since I itemize.
3) Returning an expensive set of shelves we splurged on to CB2, which didn’t end up working. Buying the cheaper brackets and staining some shelves on our own. Cheapest option was better!
4) Eating leftovers that aren’t THAT enjoyable. However, this would have gone in compost tonight if I hadn’t eaten it.
5) My insurance changed for the worse, again, so I can only get my birth control (for free w/ insurance) from 3 regional pharmacies, which are of course, not in my neighborhood. Ugh. I found that they will do a mail option if I call ahead with enough time, and provide a 3 month supply. Calling today, saving $ from having it filled elsewhere, and saving gas from having to drive all across town.


Katie February 23, 2016 at 12:49 pm

Beautiful chair!
1. Found eggs on super sale at $.77 a dozen. Bought several.
2. Air drying laundry. Haven’t owned an electric dryer in over 4 years.
3. We’ve been eating rice and beans in variations 3-4 times a week this month.
4. Completed taxes using free software.
5. Husband repaired the car (again) for $3.50. Trying to hold out for another 50k miles.


Beth Anne February 23, 2016 at 6:18 pm

Katie – what was the free software you used to do your taxes on? 🙂



Bettypants February 23, 2016 at 12:52 pm

Wow, great find. I swear, people only put real garbage out at the curb in my town – not good shit.

1. We had a free surprise lunch at my office today, courtesy of the nice brokerage firm down the block. Jimmy John’s is not my favorite, but free is.
2. I sold a set of stoneware mugs today on a local FB group for $10. I had bought them at a yard sale for $1 years ago, but they were too large for my liking. The woman who bought them was muy excited to get them, which was nice to see.
3. I bought an antique wooden box at an estate sale this summer for $5, that was filled with antique bottles and jars. I sold the jars for $27 previously, and finally sold the box today for $25.
4. Someone listed a hard anodized Calphalon wok for $7, and I met her yesterday. The pan sells for $99.95 at Bed, Bath & Beyond, and it was in excellent condition – just a few scratches on the outside. Now that I have a wok, I will follow through and make Thai noodles at home.
5. I bought Chipotle stock when everyone was panicking about the bacteria, and it’s now starting to rise. I probably should have bought more.


Kim February 23, 2016 at 1:01 pm

1. DS#2 texted me from university that he found his TI84 calculator that he lost several weeks ago! As a Nuclear Engineering major, it is a necessary item for several classes. I had sent him DS#1’s calculator since he has finished all his college math courses so I didn’t have to buy another one. I asked where it was and he said he found it in his Russian class-Huh?
2. I rescued a coir door mat that was sitting next to a trash can. It was in perfect condition but had a holiday theme printed in the middle of the mat. No worries as I will spray paint it and put it at our back door. Our former door mat recently bit the dust so I was happy to find this.
3. Brought leftover taco soup for lunch and used washable utensils to eat at work. Also drinking the free coffee.
4. Picking up coupon inserts after work from a fellow Freecycler.
5. I don’t have to cook dinner all week since my husband and I are volunteering at church in the evenings and will eat dinner there. Our church is hosting Winter Relief for the homeless and we assist the guests. We did it last year and met many wonderful people.


JD February 23, 2016 at 1:05 pm

That chair is a beauty.
1. We used a big blah tomato — I knew a store-bought tomato would be blah, but the husband insisted he wanted one– in fajitas, which also used the leftover beef from Sunday. Enough salsa will cure anything.
2. I made another five-gallon bucket full of homemade laundry detergent. I know it doesn’t work well for everyone in all areas, but it does very well with my water and machine. I found pre-flaked Zote white soap for less per ounce than Fels Naptha, and no grating.
3. I’ve been reading a free Google book online, Elizabeth Custer’s story of her husband George and his campaign out west. She’s more than slightly prejudiced in his favor and against the Indians, but it’s an interesting tale of the life in the far outposts. And it’s free to read anytime.
4. I found another penny. That makes two cents so far this year. I hope that increases!
5. I’ve not been shopping for any clothes or shoes in over a year. I think it’s going to have to happen soon, though. Clothes do eventually wear out. I plan to create a more useful, interchangeable wardrobe over time, but right now I need underwear!


Bettypants February 23, 2016 at 1:12 pm

I am impressed that you haven’t bought any clothes in a year.


JD February 24, 2016 at 6:56 am

Full disclosure — my grown daughters have gifted me with two complete outfits this past year. But I really haven’t bought anything myself, and since most of my wardrobe (but not my underwear!) was pre-owned already, it’s starting to show some real wear.


Kim from Philadelphia February 23, 2016 at 1:38 pm

Love the chair!!
Unless you really need it (or are willing to replace an existing chair) my inclination would be a slam-dunk into ye old college fund!

– after shopping at Trader Joes in a different local, I explored a lovely, indoor gourmet market and…bought nothing. I enjoyed a small hot tea sample and took a chunk of cookie from a sample plate, but that was it. Lovely place but super expensive.
– my 9 year old just outgrew several pairs of pants, so I “shopped at home” and pulled out 2 pairs from my thrift store stash. I knew he’d grow into them eventually.
-I made an enchilada casserole and didn’t run out for needed ingredients; I googled a recipe for enchilada sauce (easy and delicious) and added crumbled veggie burgers as a healthy alternative to ground beef (which we really don’t eat).
– avoided the lunch meat expense this week by making egg salad, tuna salad, and sent my husband one day with a can of soup and fruit. He survived!


MW February 23, 2016 at 5:56 pm

Good move on the lunch meat swap! That stuff is so expensive, and my husband sees it as a default. Egg salad. . . I’m going to have to make some!


Amy February 23, 2016 at 2:06 pm

1. Cleaned out the van and the car this weekend for something to do this weekend in the nice weather! 🙂
2. Found a book my son has been asking about on Amazon Kindle today for FREE. I almost bought the paperback version yesterday for almost $9 and decided to wait. Waiting paid off!
3. No spend on groceries this week……eating from the pantry except for milk which we will have to buy.
4. Investing in my health doesn’t have to be expensive. A program I wanted to start for eating better was going to cost me $72. I shopped around, and did some research and decided to make some substitutions and am now doing the program for $13.
5. Coffee this weekend with the girls. Saving money on gas by riding with one of the other girls. Will still pay $4 for my chai latte, but totally worth it for a morning talking with the girls. Cheaper than therapy. 😉


Robin February 23, 2016 at 2:44 pm

#5 is soooo important. Good friends feed the soul!


Amy February 24, 2016 at 12:17 pm

Absolutely!!! We meet once a month and it is sooooooo needed. 😉


Marilyn February 23, 2016 at 2:37 pm

The rocking chair is beautiful. What a great find. My frugal find this week was my favorite yogurt at 50% off at Chuck’s (a local grocery store). It is the Tillamook Greek style yogurt which is normally $1+ – too expensive for me. However, when it will expire in 4 or 5 days, the price drops by 50%, so I picked up 5 of them.


Donna February 23, 2016 at 5:39 pm

I would rather have Tillamooks vanilla yogurt than ice cream


Ruby February 23, 2016 at 2:59 pm

That’s a beautiful chair! I know the college fund is always hungry, but that one’s pretty enough to keep if you have a need for it. It suits your home very well.

1. Packed homemade soup and apples from the clearance bin as my work lunch this week. Also brought homemade iced tea in a big Thermos. And used washable utensils and cloth napkins.
2. Finished the last of Saturday night’s leftovers from my husband’s birthday dinner for supper last night.
3. Splurged on two 39 cent boxes of Valentine’s chocolates. They were 90 percent off the original price.
4. Tidied up under the bathroom sink and found a big bottle of shampoo I’d forgotten about.
5. Today I received two free staff t-shirts to wear at upcoming events. That made up the sting of having to pay $82.50 for an annual parking pass in one lump sum. It used to be taken out as a payroll deduction, but now they want the money upfront. Ouch!


Gina February 23, 2016 at 9:52 pm

Be thankful for only paying $82.50/year for parking. I pay $130/MONTH to park & still have to walk 5 blocks to work from the garage.


Ruby February 24, 2016 at 3:44 am

That’s just a hideous amount of money for parking!

When I got home, I realized the $82.50 was half the annual cost, since the sticker is good only through summer, not until next February.


Gina February 24, 2016 at 4:08 am

Gosh, I know that has to be a shock to the budget when your used to it being payroll deducted throughout the year so you barely notice it.

At least have some solace knowing it’s a bargain for people like me. My parking is a bargain compared to what others pay in closer proximity – $350/month. My $130 makes me sick every month. It’ just throwing money away. I could park 12 blocks away and pay less but it’s a very bad area of our downtown – shootings, muggings, etc. I’ve decided safety is worth the money, but it’s outrageous.


Marcia February 23, 2016 at 3:22 pm

1. I just read that I can make my own encilada sauce from a post above. I need to look up a recipe and do so.
2. My husband expects me to cook even when I have surgery that day!! I made an attempt–fried some ham from the freezer, melted some hot pepper cheese on it, and made sandwiches, served with pickles and applesauce. He should be glad I did that much. We did survive–though he defrosted 1.5 doughnuts from the freezer later in the evening and we shared them. They are LARGE doughnuts.
3. Today I felt much better –it was only a cataract removal–was uncomfortable last night but feels fine today—so I managed to make a nice meal of meatloaf, baked potatoes, and mashed butternut squash. I did also manage to bake a couple extra potatoes to be used in some other way later this week! Might as well use that oven heat while it’s on.
4. My sister stopped over yesterday and asked about some Bibles that were in Mom’s house. I looked today and found four of them. Not sure if the one she had in mind is there, but I hope she will take at least ONE of them! More if she wants. I got too much of Mom’s stuff–maybe we all did–when we were cleaning out the house. Whoever arrived late for a work session found a LOT of stuff already in her “take home” pile!!
5. Hunted all over the house today, thinking that my DD had brought me over the bill for DGD’s student loan–which I pay every month at the moment. I was forced to clean up some little piles of mail, papers, etc. and still didn’t find it. So I asked my daughter if she brought it over yet, and she said no!! I got some unexpected cleaning up done, so the time was not wasted. Decluttering is a frugal plus—I usually find something I didn’t know was there–found my husband a couple small bags of candy that were left from Christmas, and myself 3/4 of a package of M & M’s!


stacie m February 24, 2016 at 6:44 am

once you start making your own enchilada sauce you’ll never go back! i could honestly drink the stuff. here is the recipe i use ;
it uses quite a bit of chili powder so I buy a large canister in the spanish section of the supermarket which is more economical.


Karen3848 February 24, 2016 at 9:36 am

I so agree with Stacie M! We put red enchilada on everything. I make up a huge batch of the seasoning at one time, then just add to tomato sauce and water when I am cooking.

Here’s the recipe I use:


Bee February 23, 2016 at 4:19 pm

What a beautiful,old rocking chair. Whatever you decide to do, I am glad it was rescued and will continue to be enjoyed.
1) Following Katy’s lead, I enjoyed a TCB day. (Well, maybe enjoyed is the wrong word.) The checkbook was balanced, budget reviewed, filing done and bills paid. I used my bank’s bill pay service so I saved postage and time.
2) I ran errands this afternoon. I mailed out some paperwork. I used old stamps that I found while cleaning out my MIL’s desk after she past away. It took four stamps, but I made current postage saving myself $0.48. I saved $4 at the CVS with a coupon. Then I returned a block of cheese for a $4.50 refund. It was open when I purchased it, and didn’t see the tear. Finally, I went to the office supply store where I saved 20% or $4.40, because I brought my own bag! Fours seem to be lucky today.
3) I walked 3.5 miles with my husband and dog this evening.
4) Keeping food costs down is essential, so I am trying to prevent food waste. I made potato hash with leftovers for breakfast, and I cooked a lackluster dinner in the crockpot using a new recipe. It will be made into something else later in the week. I brought my lunch to work yesterday. All the usual stuff!
5) I enjoyed an hour of Antique Roadshow last night on free, commercial free PBS!


Bonnie February 23, 2016 at 5:56 pm

Whose doc gives a year’s worth of meds free! Awesome score!


Jen February 23, 2016 at 6:02 pm

1. Changed the insurance plan to collision only on our new to us car. It’s 12 years old and I normally don’t carry full coverage on cars that old but I didn’t have the money saved back up to replace it since we paid cash for it. (Still not sure why I thought it was a good idea to have full coverage to begin with). I only had the full coverage for 6 months. We get a discount for paying in full every 6 months and changing the coverage dropped it another $100 plus. Also my emergency fund is now fully restocked.

2. I have a kiddo in college so have been saving to pay cash for tuition for when she transfers from the community college to the university this fall. The cc has been extremely frugal for us as our state has a 100% academic scholarship she qualified for after completing 12 hours. They also have freebie classes you can take while still in high school for dual credit. She got 2 very nice scholarships this week for the university so that’s a load off us. Yay for free college money!

3. I have been lucky enough to pick up extra hours at my hospital job since the beginning of the year, and if you fill a need, you get paid extra on top of your regular wage to do it. This will be a particularly good week for me with extra hours. I am doing this to pay for my daughter’s college tuition.

4. I have been faithfully using the free ( family!) gym membership my employer provides 3x a week. I do pay extra for a trainer but I gave up two other monthly expenses to do it. My health is worth it.

5. I was able to keep the heat in the house off for several days this month due to 70 degree days. This is unheard of in February where I live. Was also able to line dry laundry during those days.

Will be shelling out for medical expenses until my deductible is met so this may be the last of the frugal wins for awhile!


Beth Anne February 23, 2016 at 6:07 pm

1.It’s the small but little things that add up right? Used the hot water from boiling eggs to set the honey in to un-crystallize.

2. Just made gingerbread muffins with a free mix my mom gave me she didn’t want. Used the cold water from #1 in cooling off the eggs to soak the batter bowl in.

3. Took a TCM day (inspired by Katy but the Taking Care of Business became Taking Care of Me) by taking a much needed sick day. Didn’t treat myself to anything food wise even though I was tempted. Got up in the am before school and had time to make breakfast for my daughter and myself to eat and enjoy, packed her lunch for her (so she felt TCM’d too) and did 20 minutes of yoga for my aching bones, 2 loads of laundry which I hung up to air dry and went and saw my therapist early afternoon to help get my head back on straight. Therapist is expensive as I haven’t met my co-pay yet but worth it to get back in the game. Came home and heated up leftover Chinese – sesame chicken. Still alot let even though had already gotten three meals out of it so split the remainder up into two lunches – froze one and kept one to take for lunch tomorrow. Took a long nap as I had not slept much the night before.

4. Went and got my haircut. Stylist/salon owner got to chatting and told him about my daughters skin problems. He gave me free wash and mask samples for her and set-up a free 30 minute appointment to meet with her and talk about her skin, make-up etc., so grateful! He also told me about a mask/scrub we can make with stuff from home for her – honey, salt, sugar, and a little fresh lemon juice.

5. Didn’t feel like cooking but made the defrosted chicken legs that needed to be cooked and sliced up potatoes for oven fries maximizing the oven power. Mde enought for tomorrow nights dinner as well as I am working until 8:30 and daughter and I will need something can just heat up. After dinner made the muffins using the heat from cooking dinner.

6. Didn’t run away to the Bahama’s although I am tempted! Storm warnings here for tomorrow estimating up to 6-12 inches of snow! I want it only if I get a snow day off from work from it to have another TCM day. 😉


Lindsey February 23, 2016 at 6:45 pm

Pretty good week for saving money.

1. Spent today cancelling two magazine subscriptions for magazines that have suddenly changed their focuses (foci?), so received $15. and change back.

2. Called to complain about receiving a cook book I did not order and did not want to pay for—asked for a postage paid return label from the company. They told me to forget returning the book, to keep it for the trouble they’d caused me. It is not a cookbook I would use but I have a friend who would love it so I put it away for her birthday gift—so, saved the $19.95 they wanted for the book and also got a free birthday gift out of it for my friend!

3. Put Netflix streaming on hold for a few months, until the husband and I figure out if we really want it—we seem to be using it less and less. Plus, soon it will be spring and time for gardening, which seems to take up most of our evenings since we try to plant enough so that we can eat fresh, can and dehydrate enough for the entire year.

4. Mended 10 socks that had holes in the toes and had been stuffed into the corner of a drawer because I felt guilty throwing them out. I can’t stand to wear patches on the heels but I don’t really feel the toe mends, so saved money not buying new socks.

5. Took five books out of the library—this is a huge deal for me as last year I bought books I wanted but this year I am trying to get them through the library first.

6. Husband came home from a meeting with a loaf of bakery made garlic and cheese bread that none of the other men (no women, this is a barbershop singing group) wanted to take home. I was ecstatic—the bakery charges $10.25 a loaf for this bread, so I only buy it for myself on my birthday! I usually bake our bread, but there is something about this flavor that I just cannot duplicate. My husband is pretty shy, so for him to speak up and ask to take the bread when everyone else seemed to be leaving it behind was a huge deal and a loving thing to do since he knows how I lust after this bread.

7. This week my husband gave the two wolfhounds their baths, one at a time since each one weighs about 150 pounds. I stood guard with a towel because as soon as he releases them they try to run out of the bathroom and shake all over the bedroom. At one point husband’s head was bent over soaping the older dog and I realized they both have the same color curly hair! How could I not have noticed that for seven years?! Saved us $90 per dog to wash them ourselves…I am certain I’d make a lot more money if I took a video of naked man washing huge dog and submitted it to America’s Funniest Home Videos!


Florencia February 23, 2016 at 7:23 pm

1. Ate lunch at institute today. Brought fruit and a granola bar for breakfast and ate animal crackers from my car’s trunk when I was hungry.
2. Resisted stopping by the tavo stand on the way home. I had to look away.
3. Met with an advisor at school and I’ll be volunteering with the program she’s in charge of to help me qualify for scholarships.
4. Got a parking ticket at school for not properly displaying my permit (I forgot to hang it on my rear view mirror). I went to parking services and they waived it because it was my first ever ticket at school.
5. Several people in my accounting class (including me) were not aware that the paper version of our assignment due online tonight at midnight was due today in class. The teacher was nice enough to give us full credit for just turning in the electronic version by tonight. Making the most of tuition. I better go do homework. 🙂


IsabelI February 24, 2016 at 2:07 am

Super chair Katie! Glad it has found a good home!
Still waiting for our verge collection due at the end of last year but cancelled due to royalty visit?
In paper recently was story about woman shifting house who had things removed by enthusiastic verge collector! Moral of story don’t stand on verge or put things near verge!
Doing OK this fortnight after using all budget previous one! Just have to get through tomorrow’s outing! Better leave extravagent alter ego home and take frugal sensible one!


dusty February 24, 2016 at 4:33 am

No matter how hard I try to have a frugal week something always happens. I did go to a class at my agency (I’m a home health care provider) so I did grab some free food and got paid for the 3 hours I was there so that was good. Then I went to the dentist and spent $150 on cleaning and X-rays! Oh well, gotta keep my teeth in my head!


janine February 24, 2016 at 6:01 am

We are on vacation so a little difficult to think of good frugal actions.
1. Making lists of household foodstuffs so I can frugally make dinner out of items on hand for remainder of month.
2. Furnace not functioning at home was discovered by son#2 when checking on cat – resulting in expensive repair, but better than frozen pipes!
3. Bringing home Florida oranges for family.
4. Making use of “resort fee” goodies such as free newspapers, pens, etc.
5. Will be flying home on jet tonight but have decided that maintenance costs too high for actual purchase.


Jen February 24, 2016 at 6:11 pm

#5 Good one!


AN February 24, 2016 at 7:50 am

1. Did some prep work for my second job while watching a favorite TV show last night.
2. Was feeling very stressed about work yesterday, so I read a library book while taking a bubble bath when I got home. The bubble bath gel I have was a gift and is one of those aromatherapy ones that is designed to help you relax.
3. Workout DVD at home this morning while brewing my coffee. I gave up my gym membership in December.
4. Made plans with a friend to have a night in over dessert and hot chocolate rather than spending money to go out. I also offered a free day of babysitting to her in the future as a thank-you for a nice gift she gave me recently.
5. The usual: leftovers for lunch, coffee brewed at home, etc.


Vickie February 24, 2016 at 9:26 am

1) Ate leftovers for dinner last night – bbq chicken and baked potato.
2) I found more soccer gear for my oldest granddaughter at the thrift store.
3) I’m trying to hold off buying anymore groceries until payday next week. Fortunately scrounging has worked. I may just bring a PBJ sandwich to work the next few days.
4) I was so hungry this morning, for something other than my fruit & nut mix for breakfast. Instead of stopping for a breakfast sandwich though, I ate some instant oatmeal I had here at work and added the nuts and berries to it. Saved money and it hit the spot.
5) There’s a buy-out store in the north metro area my daughter frequents once a month. Vitamins, herbs, drug-store stuff. I think the owner gets out dated stuff from Rite-Aid. I plan to go with her next month and see what he has. I think she said everything is mostly $1. I need to stock up on some ointments and see if he has some of the supplements I use.


tonya parham February 24, 2016 at 10:40 am

1. Doing a little training for an online job– may or may not get the job, but will probably make about $60 for doing it.

2. Watched some online cooking videos and learned how to make BBQ sauce– which I made last night! SO GOOD! I’m not sure if this is frugal, really but it SEEMS frugal to me, plus, I just like my sauce!

3. Making some black beans today. It’s cold and rainy today and I think a pot of chili might be good for dinner.

4. Haven’t eaten out in a while…can’t actually think when the last time we ate out was. (This is HUGE for me!) Oh, I do remember, it was last Friday….and I felt awful the next day. Have had no desire to do it again.

5. Am continuing to use the hell out of my public library. Am currently reading a book about David Bowie and the 1970s!


Elizabeth February 24, 2016 at 3:10 pm

Love the rocking chair! 🙂


PaperCrane February 24, 2016 at 5:30 pm

1) Used my free chipotle coupon to get a burrito bowl. Spouse and I split it for dinner.
2) At the grocery store, noticed that one shelf of gallon milk said 1.99 while the other said 2.59. I watched the register and saw it ring up at 2.59 and protested. Got it for the 1.99 price.
3) bought hot peppers off the discount produce rack. We make pepper jam and use it on everything. We usually grow our peppers but will likely run out of pepper jam before this year’s crop comes in.
4) Picked up my free bagel from Paneras. My latest reward was a free daily bagel for the month of February so we’re trying to pick them up if we’re nearby.
5) Tried the checkout 51 app for the first time on today’s shopping trip and got rebates on milk and tomatoes.


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