Five Frugal Things

by Katy on June 2, 2016 · 64 comments

  1. I had a meeting downtown and used my bus pass to get there and back. This work perk not only saved me gasoline, but also the cost and hassle of parking the car.
  2. I was tempted by the delicioso Mexican food cart on my way home, but instead came home to scramble up some eggs and brew a cup of tea.
  3. I saw that rain was in the forecast, so I sprinkled some shade-friendly grass seed over my patchy backyard lawn. I already had the seed, so it was a sunk cost. (I refuse to water the lawn, which might explain the patchiness.)
  4. I wore my thrifted clothing, slept on thrifted sheets, packed leftovers to bring to work, walked to the grocery store, shared extra donuts with a neighbor, got paid for something I sold awhile back, submitted a Clark Howard article and I sent my husband to the DMV and DEQ to register the car. I was pulled over by the police last week, as my tags were expired, but he told me that all would be forgiven if I took care of it within 30 days.
  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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{ 64 comments… read them below or add one }

Sharon June 2, 2016 at 4:16 pm

Whew! Dodged a bullet on that #4!

My 16 year old caused a low-speed car crash, and it’s going to be expensive for our family. He’s paying his entire savings to us to help with the costs. At least no one was injured, thank the Lord.


Vickie June 3, 2016 at 6:43 am

It’s great that you’re making him help you pay for the accident. I think that makes teenagers more responsible drivers. Too often I hear people complaining about their teens sense of entitlement, but they don’t seem to understand responsibility is taught, not inherited. Glad no one was hurt!!


Lindsey June 2, 2016 at 4:31 pm

1. Received a gorgeous small tree as a gift but the pot was way too small. I priced some at the store and the size I needed would cost close to $100! No large pots at the Salvation Army. I suddenly thought that one of my friends might have a pot lying around, so I sent out a group email. An hour later one of them delivered a huge pot, just perfect for me, that had been gathering dust at her house. She was glad to get rid of it.

2. Traded spinach and scallions from my garden to my neighbor for a loaf of rhubarb sweet bread. She had been lamenting making a recipe that was too large to eat or fit into her freezer. I asked if I had anything she might want in exchange and she immediately said some of the spinach she saw growing in my garden. I threw in the scallions because the spinach didn’t seem enough some how.

3. Checked two books out of the library, instead of buying them like I would have done two years ago.

4. Had a grisly medical test this morning and I felt like rewarding myself. I dug out a gift card that had been lingering in my wallet for about two years; we usually make our own pizza so had pretty much ignored the card and figured I might give it to someone else eventually. Anyway, it was enough that I could completely indulge myself, ordering all the toppings that I wanted (hello double mushroom and sausage and onion!), paying nothing out of pocket. Thought the husband’s eyes would bug out—I never come home with take-out. (Not really frugal, but it was no money out of my pocket and I really felt like I deserved a treat.)

5. Tried a new King Arthur artisan bread recipe that you mix once, put in the fridge, and use a third of it each time you want to bake a loaf. By the time 7 days have passed, it tastes like sourdough. Saves mixing and washing three different times, so even easier than the already super easy no-knead artisan bread recipes.

6. The husband, who is Mr. Fix-it, helped this totally non-mechanical three-doors-down neighbor fix his lawn mower, his fishing rod and his tiller. Turned down any payment. The next day the guy brought over a GALLON of the honey his bees produced last summer. We are not huge honey eaters but I do use it for marinades and some recipes, and honey lasts forever and is pretty pricey around here, so we are very thankful for such a generous gift. I told him how much we valued it and he said, “Are you kidding? I have about a dozen more gallons and my wife refuses to let me give it as Christmas gifts anymore because our friends and relatives are sick of it!” He then said if my husband would fix his computer and install a door bell on his house, he would give us another gallon. I jumped at the offer because I can break the gallon into smaller jars and put on a fancy label and give them as gifts to my family members and co-workers—who will be thrilled! Free food and free gifts made by people we know, does it get any better than that?


SKM June 2, 2016 at 6:01 pm

Can you share the recipe for the King Arthur bread? And HUGE score on the honey! Right on!


JD June 3, 2016 at 7:32 am

I got that recipe, too — no-knead crusty white bread is what it’s called, on the King Arthur website. It’s basically flour, water, yeast and salt.


SKM June 3, 2016 at 8:40 am

Awesome! Thank you!


Vickie June 3, 2016 at 6:59 am

OMG!! Great score on that honey!!!


Cynthia June 7, 2016 at 5:24 am

My husband used to make mead with honey, warm water and yeast. Put it in 5 gallon jugs and put a condom over the top with a few holes to let the CO2 escape.


Mand01 June 2, 2016 at 4:44 pm

1. Got free food and coffee all day yesterday at a training course paid for by work. And was paid to attend.
2. I used a $35 credit on my online grocery shopping account to buy my week’s groceries.
3. The training course was at the uni where I am still a student, so I logged into the free wifi and downloaded all my podcasts. I have unlimited wifi at home but it is SLOW! So I took advantage.
4. Came back to work to find my new contract slipped under my door. Employment is frugal 🙂
5. We have saved for and paid cash for two new smart phones this month. We use them all the time so this is a relevant expense for us – but we only pay cash, never a plan or credit.


Emily June 2, 2016 at 5:03 pm

1. Drove to and from PA from NC this week, packed snacks both there and back.
2. brought back with me a new set of silverware my dad got from a neighbor who is downsizing. I will either list or give away my old set.
3. Brought a few things back from my parents house to sell on varage sale/ebay/etc. I moved away from home 2 years ago but much of my items still linger lol.
4. Found 2 pennies on the ground! I keep forgetting to look down. Working on it, seems like when I do I always find change.
5. almost at 4,500 pts on my receipt hog account (30 dollars), so i keep snapping pics of my receipts!!


PaperCraneFarm June 3, 2016 at 1:45 am

Thanks for including the Receipt Hog app in your FFT. I had never heard of it but will try it out. Do you have a referral link?


Emily June 3, 2016 at 8:29 am

Yeah it’s a great app! Takes a while to get the highest payout but it’s worth it! I can’t find my referral code if there is one!


pattilou June 2, 2016 at 5:40 pm

1. My niece was cleaning out her closet getting rid of some things that not longer fit. I now have several new to me shirts, work out pants and two coats.
2. a friend was throwing away a perfectly good planter which I happily took home and it will be filled with the parsley and basil that I started from seed.
3. baked a cake for my sister’s birthday and some brownies for a picnic with my five year old niece. I borrowed some cake pans from my mother’s neighbor instead of buying them. I returned the pans with some muffins that I made.
4. One of my co-workers had given out little baskets with toys in them. Another co-worker was throwing hers away so I rescued it. I was able to give her’s and mine to my nieces who were thrilled with them.
5. I got some books on tape from the library for the long car ride back and forth to my parents.


PaperCraneFarm June 3, 2016 at 2:08 am

Homemade cakes and brownies are so much better and picnics are such a treat for kids. We have a small insulated bag that the toddlers use as their picnic basket that they take whenever we eat somewhere other than the table – like the porch, outside, or an adventure.


pattilou June 3, 2016 at 7:05 am

It’s funny how many people either said why don’t you just go buy the cake and brownies or were amazed that I actually bake from scratch. It is so much less expensive, tastes better, I know exactly what’s in it and there is nothing like watching the utter joy on the face of the five year old when she gets to use the mixer. It’s also great to see what a generous little one she is. She always wants to share the baked goods with the neighbors.


Karen June 3, 2016 at 2:48 pm

That’s really great that you baked with your niece! I taught my 2 kids and 2 nieces plus they’d friends to bake and can’t wait to teach my granddaughter. Baking and cooking teaches such valuable lessons: how to be frugal, plan and follow directions.


Karen June 3, 2016 at 2:49 pm

Their friends, I meant

Bee June 2, 2016 at 6:00 pm

My FFT are rather boring, but they balance out the non-frugal things that have popped up over the last few days.

1) I made shreaded pork tacos from leftover pork loin, roasted corn, and other odds and ends. I haven’t done much cooking other cooking.
2)It was laundry day. So I washed several loads and hung them up to dry.
3) For entertainment this week, I have been gardening and reading a book purchased at the library book sale for $ 0.30.
4) The weather has become hot. I needed a few pieces of summer clothing and found some of them a my favorite thrift store. Great quality. Like new. Little money!
5) I needed to get house today. It was to hot for a walk and the other options were spendy. I called a girlfriend and went over for a visit. We drank ice tea, rearranged her furniture and laughed for hours.


Bee June 3, 2016 at 2:59 am

#5 — I meant to say that I needed to get out of the house today.


janine June 2, 2016 at 6:56 pm

1. Made BBQ chicken tonight with sale BBQ sauce – decided to try off brand selling for 69 cents. Added fresh spinach (sale) and potatoes for an inexpensive and fairly healthy meal.
2. Instead of buying cookies and treats for the weekend will make a dark chocolate cake as a treat.
3. Plans for the weekend: Fri evening- party with cash bar and free snacks; Sat- free Art Fair; (will purchase one soft drink and keep reminding myself that we own plenty of art which has not yet been hung on our walls.) Saturday evening graduation party – will purchase gift for graduate plus $$.
4. Shopped at a wholesale bread factory and purchased six loaves of gourmet bread for 75 cents a loaf.
5. No Lear jet.


Is it a need or a want June 2, 2016 at 7:41 pm

(1)Will be moving my Netfix account down a tier and save myself $2.00/ month. Over a year that just about covers the $25.00 dues for a favourite organization.
(2) in recent weeks husband has brought home containers of cookies from meetings four times.
(3) Daughter brought home leftovers good for two dinners for the five of us and still had some left overs. Yummy Greek!
(4) other daughter was gifted two coupons for free full size ice cream products.
(5) gave away a coupon for a free oil change that I won’t use to the ice cream coupon giver. They were leaving town for a course and could not use the ice cream coupons before they expired. They had just bought a used car for their travels and could use the oil change. Win/win.


LL June 2, 2016 at 8:28 pm

1. Made up a big batch of pasta bake for my dinner last night with leftover chicken. The kids and I will have it again Saturday night and I’ll freeze the rest.
2. Scored a $20 voucher when I signed up to a local clothing chain. It’s my mums fave store so I’ll pass it on.
3. I’ve planned the weekend out so I only have to pay for one meal out. We will entertain ourselves with a bike ride, a play in the park and going to my daughters soccer game.
4. I have to take a trip to the city next week for an exam. I found a free travel pass in the drawer which will cover me both ways free.
5. The kids were gifted some warm winter clothes from family.


Florencia June 2, 2016 at 9:29 pm

1. Got treated to Olive Garden by my brother in law on Monday. I got an entree that came with soup, so I had two plates of soup and saved most of my entree for lunch the next day. My dad treated dessert, which I had yesterday as a snack.
2. Went out on a date yesterday. I was hungry when I got home from running errands, so I ate a snack. Glad I did, because we had to wait about 40 minutes for a table. We shared a big and tasty appetizer and I saved most of my entree, side dish and piece of bread. I gave the beet side dish to my vegetarian sister and took the rest for lunch.
3. I have a Skype interview before work tomorrow with an event staffing agency. Wish me luck!
4. Completed all my paperwork to do demos/sampling with a local company. I have a 4-hour shift on Saturday. I’ll learn something new and make some money.
5. Continued to apply to odd jobs.
6. Contacted an agency about getting an evening job. Sent my resume. Will look into other agencies.
7. Have been taking my lunch to work and supplementing with snacks from the office.
8. Bought a ton of olive oil on sale and reached $1.50 off gas with grocery store points. I also got marked down milk and on-sale flan mix.
9. Looked for the best price for my phone’s repair. Will complete Google review for $5 off my second half of the bill. Hopefully they get the part tomorrow and I can have my phone back.
10. Will make sure to abide by demo/sampling job’s guidelines so I get all the pay and supply reimbursement, and hopefully more future work.
11. My best friend recently had his hours cut at his job, so I’ve been sharing some of the odd jobs I find for him to apply.
12. Today I got home from running errands after work and was super hungry. I would have gone out to eat if I’d found a gift card, but I didn’t. I grabbed boiled pasta and some Brussel sprouts from the fridge. Cooked with a little oil in a pan and added two beaten eggs. Topped with cheese.
13. My library has a read for fines program. I accrued $0.75 in fines this week, so I’ll go to the library on the way home from the demo and read half an hour there to have it waived. I know it’s not much, but I don’t usually find 75 cents on the floor and I already read all the time, so I might as well do it at the library and same some money.
14. Saved Coke codes from the boxes at work. I am up to the weekly limit, but I’ll save them. I’m not sure what to use them for, but I might as well accrue them.
15. Redeemed my bank’s reward points for a $3 Amazon credit. Will help to pay school books.


Florencia June 2, 2016 at 9:39 pm

Those accumulated since I didn’t comment on the last FFT!


Juhli June 3, 2016 at 1:58 am

1. Returned fluorescent tubes as needed fewer than I thought
2. Washed dark colored feature wall with white vinegar & water mix to prep for painting same color as rest of walls
3. Used up almost all leftovers from Memorial Day weekend
4. We are eating the “mistake” blueberry muffins – I used baking soda instead of baking powder so had to freeze them and make more for Memorial Day weekend guest brunch. Not horrible but not as good as usual.
5. Froze overripe bananas for later banana muffins and went to Kroger on senior discount day.


Susie's Daughter June 3, 2016 at 7:36 am

#4 – I have done that before too! For some reason it seems to happen often with this one zucchini muffin recipe. I tried using the mistake muffins in savory bread pudding one time. It helped a little!


PaperCraneFarm June 3, 2016 at 2:02 am

1. Been watching the weather like a hawk to assess whether we have to water the garden. Rained on Monday and will rain today and Sunday. Maybe we should have watered during the week? Too late now.

2. I’m rotating kids toys and books between rooms and bookcases. Same stuff in different places suddenly feels like new stuff because they can see and reach different things.

3. Have started packing up supper leftovers immediately in lunch form. Last night’s fish which I had shredded for the younger toddler (who didn’t touch it) was immediately mixed with mayo, mustard, and celery for a sandwich for lunch.

4. Supposed to be cool and rainy today so I’m going to “batch” heat producing items like cooking and laundry. It seems silly to do those items

5. Some baking potatoes got away from us and have spouted so I’m going them up for the kids to help us plant over the weekend. I’m going to plant them in a pot so they are easier to harvest. Even in raised beds, digging out potatoes ad sweet potatoes turned out to be hard.

P.S. The younger toddler slept through the night for the first time in a couple of weeks due to her teething. Yeah! I feel…almost human again!


PaperCraneFarm June 3, 2016 at 2:04 am

Still clearly somewhat sleep deprived. #4 meant to say “seems silly to heat the house up and then use a/c to cool it down.” We’re in a full-blown terrible allergy season so we can’t leave the windows open.


Emily June 3, 2016 at 9:27 am

I feel your pain there!


MW June 3, 2016 at 8:23 am

Yeah for the PS! Sleep does wonders for everybody.


Jill June 3, 2016 at 3:21 am

1. My in-laws live in a nursing home 2 hours from me and I try to go visit them at least once a month. This time I packed my lunch and snacks – and took the back, country roads to make it an enjoyable drive instead of stressful in traffic.
2. We hosted Memorial Day weekend at our house for family. I took a pork shoulder from the freezer and make barbeque sandwiches for dinner from the crockpot. It’s something I rarely make but they were a hit.
3. Picked up 2 books I had put on reserve from the library.
4. Staying home over the weekend – the most frugal kind of weekend of all.
5. But next weekend we are going away for a long weekend – we used hotel points for out stay, am trading cat sitting with a neighbor, are driving and not flying and will pack as much food as possible for the weekend.


Carrie June 3, 2016 at 3:54 am

1) Negotiated a $60 credit from our internet service provider
2) Earning $50 for a 30-minute focus group for a market research company
3) Sold unused homeschool stuff on eBay
4) Bought my daughter a new dress for an event at a local consignment shop
5) Used almost-bad oranges for a smoothie


Bettypants June 3, 2016 at 4:00 am

1. Sold a stack of melamine plates on a local FB board. I had bought them at a yard sale years ago for $2 and sold them for $20. I decided to only keep the one color of melamine I love best, and getting rid of all the rest.
2. Mailed out the ebay package and listed two more items on there yesterday.
3. Completed a short survey for DTE, and they emailed me a $5 gift card.
4. It doesn’t sound frugal, but I resisted going to the huge sub sales going on around here. I always find great deals, but I have too much stuff in my house and garage as it is. I need to focus on reducing what I already own, not buying more.
5. The irises my coworker gave me last year are blooming and they are stunning. She orders hers from iris breeders and is very particular, giving me her cast offs. I am not particular – free is my favorite color.


Vickie June 3, 2016 at 6:02 am

1) I picked up a documentary about Bees from the Library, pretty cool DVD! I’m returning it today and picking up audiobooks with my favorite shopping card.
2) I bought a lot of fresh veggies from Aldi’s last week, so I’ve been making salads and sandwiches for meals at home.
3) I used the grease drained from the meatloaf I made over the weekend to pour over the outside dogs food. It lasted through 3 days of meals for them. It’s a treat for them and the extra household leavings seems to keep their coats healthy.
4) I ran out of cream for my morning coffee here at work, so I used the dry packaged creamer. I don’t like using that stuff, but it’s cheaper than buying a cappuccino.
5) I’ve been going through my clothes again and gathered a box of stuff to give a co-worker whose involved in Dress for Success. I like giving my clothes to people who can use them. Even though I’ve had some of those things for quite awhile, they are in good shape and it makes me feel like I didn’t waste my money. My clothes rack and shoes are beginning to look like a minimalist’s wardrobe. Hooray! Less to store and take care of. 🙂


Kim June 3, 2016 at 7:30 am

1. Did a few mystery shops yesterday and found a dime on the floor at one and 2 pennies near the Coinstar machine at another. I later returned a loose cart at Aldi’s so 37¢ for the “found money” fund. YTD- $4.45, all coins!
2. Took 2 books I finished reading over to see if my neighbor would like to read them. The books are “The Invention of Wings” by Sue Monk Kidd and “Still Life with Chickens” by I can’t remember. I enjoyed them both and thought my neighbor might also. When she returns them I will take to the used book store for credit. I bought them for $1.50- 25% from the charity shop that assists the elderly to stay in their homes and I’ll get $4 credit from the book store.
3. While at neighbors she offered me some tomato seedlings for my garden which is great as I haven’t gotten any planted yet.
4. My trunk in my car suddenly refused to open either by remote or button in the car. This car was built with no key lock in the trunk or the passenger side door so it presented a bit of a problem and pulling a string tied to the emergency latch was not going to be a long term solution. Did the research online and found it could be 3 different things. DH picked up a “new” latch for $20 by stopping by the auto recyclers junkyard. Checked fuses, replaced the latch and still nothing. Decided it must be a kink in the wiring. My dome light had also stopped working about 6 weeks ago- the slide button was really loose and not working properly. Since DH had the tools out he figured he would fix the light and for some weird reason after he got the light working the trunk latch worked! Very strange!
5. Picked up 2 cans of OFF mosquito spray, 2 bottles of flavored real creamer and 2 Power bars. After sale and coupons paid $3 and change, then received a $1.50 Catalina and submitted rebates for Power bars-$2 on Mobisave and $1 on Ibotta. I love getting paid to shop.


jennifer June 3, 2016 at 7:40 am

1.I’m taking my youngest daughter to the splash pad for a fun free treat. With bottles of water and snacks from home in tow of course.
2. I signed my brother up for lots of birthday freebies. He is out of a job so this will be a nice treat.
3. I am continuing to enjoy my small garden. Everything is thriving so hopefully we will soon have fresh veggies.
4. I highlighted my own hair saving me $100. Some places in town charge less but I always end up walking out of the salon with “almost” blonde hair so I use the only one that makes the highlights blonde and she charges $100 for a cut and color. I can get my own hair blonde at home for just a few dollars but I still need a cut. My daughter is in cosmetology school so maybe she will eventually get time to pencil me in her schedule, lol.
5. I am planning a trip to the beach with my family. We will bring lots of things from home saving a lot of money. I think I mentioned here before that I bring my crock pot. I pre-prepare things at home like BBQ pulled pork, taco meat, etc. and freeze them. Then before we go out to play on the beach put in the crock pot on low,and when everybody comes in a couple hours later starving, food is ready to eat self serve style. You can also put in a bunch of hot dogs or polish sausages and do the same way. I love to do this because it always seems like one person is always stuck cooking(me) on vacation while everyone else gets to relax. Just because you are frugal doesn’t mean a lot of your vacation has to be sacrificed to cooking with a little early prep. My family quickly tires of sandwiches so this works well for us paired with fresh fruits/veggies from a local farm stand. Don’t forget when you pack your crock pot to save on packing space by storing things inside your crock for travel. Just thought this was worth another mention because it helps me so much. …And I couldn’t think of a number 5!!


JD June 3, 2016 at 7:55 am

1. Our local McDonalds just remodeled and put a bunch of coupons in the paper for their grand re-opening. We don’t eat there, but one of the coupons is for a free coffee — my husband does like their coffee. He’ll be getting two free ones, because someone brought the same coupons at work to share.
2. I was going to fry given-to-us fish last night until I realized I’m out of corn meal. Instead of making a mad dash to town in the car, I blackened the fish instead. Cheaper and healthier. I always make sure I have my homemade spicy seasoning mix in the pantry, whatever else I may forget. I cooled the lard for frying I had started to heat, and returned it to the container in the refrigerator.
3. I found another penny! I’ve finally reached 25 found cents — six months into the year.
4. The low-cost animal clinic is tomorrow. I can get my dog vaccinated for $8 and get his nails trimmed for $5. He’s horrible about trimming his nails — even the pros have trouble trimming them, so I never trim them myself. My pets get checkups at the vet, but most of their vaccines and nail trims are done at the low-cost clinics, which raise money for the local animal shelter. Win-win.
5. The valerian tincture I made is done, and my husband’s insomnia is being treated successfully with it. For about $13.00 in ingredients, I can make about 10-12 ounces , of it, rather than paying $11.00 per ounce at the store for the same thing.


Darcy June 3, 2016 at 8:31 am

Reading one of your old posts reminded me of Groupon (from which I’ve long since stopped receiving emails) and that I had a $10 credit with them. Anticipated that it had expired but it was valid for 10 more days! WOOT! Miraculously, my favorite (and overpriced) pizza joint had $20 value for $11 so I only paid $1 out of pocket. This weekend will largely be spent on homework for my almost-complete MBA (which has been fully paid for along the way via a combination of work subsidies and moi), but at least I will be able to treat myself (and a friend) to amazing pizza and free library movies that have FINALLY arrived after months of being on a wait list. Hooray!


Ruby June 3, 2016 at 8:46 am

1. This past week, I read a really cool book about how people made do and mended their clothes during WWII in England. It’s called “Fashion on the Ration” and it made me pull a pair of work slacks out of the closet and d0 some alterations to make them more comfortable to wear.

2-5. Did all the usual daily frugal stuff: packed my lunch and drinks from home, wore cute thrifted outfits (I delight in how nice I can make things look for pennies), did no shopping except buying dog food, got clever with the leftovers. It all adds up over time.


cathy June 4, 2016 at 10:11 am

That book sounded so interesting, I immediately went on my library’s website to see if they have it. They don’t, but I was able to request it via Interlibrary Loan. Can’t wait to read it.


Ruby June 4, 2016 at 10:18 am

The same author, Julie Summers, has another book titled “Home Fires,” about how Britain’s Women’s Institute chapters helped on the home front during the war by producing clothing and food for the populace and soldiers, among other vital tasks. My library doesn’t have it, so I’m saving up to buy it.

I just love reading about that aspect of those times. It was the ultimate in frugality.


Bee June 4, 2016 at 2:22 pm

I love “Home Fires”! I can’t wait for the next season on PBS.


cathy June 4, 2016 at 4:34 pm

Have you tried requesting _Home Fires_ through Interlibrary Loan through your library? That’s how I located Fashion on the Ration. Generally our library doesn’t charge for ILL, and will call me first if the loaning library does charge so I can decide if I still want to borrow it. Of course, if it’s one of those books you really want to own, that’s a good reason to save up for it.


Sandy June 3, 2016 at 9:12 am

So many nca achievements! Y’all are so inspiring!
I thought I had a HUGE nca fail, but managed to save it. I purchased chicken breasts from Costco last week and didn’t get them into the freezer like I usually do. They come vac packed two breast to a pouch. Usually, I separate the punches and freeze in a single layer, then store in a wire basket in the freezer. I ‘found’ them while looking for something else, and it was the last use by date. So, got the pressure cooker out, opened all the pouches, rinsed each pice really well in cold water and cooked them. Today, they will go into meal sized portions into the freezer for future meals. I would have been so angry if I hadn’t been able to save that chicken!
Got my library card working at the library and have borrowed books and found two groups who meet at the library. I’ll attend a meeting or two to see if they are for me. Free entertainment!
Ate all meals at home, many from ingredients in the pantry or freezer.
Will visit local farmers market tomorrow. I’ll carry my own basket and bags, and return an egg carton when I buy more eggs! My husband has been going with me, he’s taken more interest in the food we eat! Next year, I’ll harvest my own locally grown fruit and veg!


AN June 3, 2016 at 10:32 am

1. Went out for doughnuts with my coworkers for a treat this morning. I avoided the temptation to buy an expensive coffee, and instead brought my doughnut back to my office to enjoy with the coffee I had brought from home.
2. Had to go to two different stores to find the gift my dad wanted for his birthday. Thankfully I was able to combine both trips with other errands I was running in order to avoid using extra gas.
3. While buying his gift, I was really hungry and considered stopping for ice cream. However, I decided to save my money and had a snack when I got home.
4. I will get a free lunch for working an event tomorrow. While I’m not paid anything extra, the meal will be nice and our supervisors take notice of those who volunteer for events.
5. Making frugal weekend plans with my friends.


LaNell June 3, 2016 at 10:44 am

I see where people sell stuff on local facebook pages – what is this? I don’t know if we don’t have them in my area – southeast Texas….or if I am just not aware. Info please.


PaperCraneFarm June 4, 2016 at 2:50 am

Within facebook, use the search box at the top to search for your town and yardsale. Once you find one group, it will suggest other nearby similar groups. I’m on a few groups because some are bigger than others (600 for my town vs. 6000 for the neighboring town).


Chris June 3, 2016 at 12:11 pm

1. The women I work for gave me a 5 lb chicken that was gifted to them by their egg supplier.
2. They also gave me a 15 pack of LaCroix water that they bought by accident.
3. Since we are having a wedding in our yard this year, I’m planting many more flowers than veggies. I did plant some pole green beans along the fence line and they are coming up – now I just need to get the garden twine on the fence.
4. We used to eat out every Sunday afternoon – a pattern we got into when our kids were little – but we are now down to every other Sunday.
5. Received a text today from our son with the most perfect grand baby taking his first steps – so sweet! Frugal maybe not but wonderful – YES!


Janne June 3, 2016 at 2:07 pm

1. Three washing machine related things. Firstly, our washing machine wasn’t pumping out water. We figured something was stuck in the filter, managed to open it and check. Slight use of force was necessary to unscrew the filter, but we got it out, cleared the blockage and the machine works again!
2. It turned out that about $ 8 in coins was causing the blockage, so the machine actually paid us to fix it!
3. The force needed to open the filter caused part of the filter to snap. Not serious, but it doesn’t close as tightly as it should now, and leaks slightly when we use it. I shopped around on the internet for a new filter, and managed to save about $ 15 by ordering the part from UK, compared to buying it in Norway. The part cost £ 15 and shipping £ 8. All in all, saved the cost of a repair service person, and my machine works again.
4. My DD and I sold a whole lot of stuff at a neighbourhood second hand market last weekend, earning us a total of about $ 250, and clutter out of the house!
5. Brought my own lunch to work, and drank the coffee at work (which is good and freshly ground, so no complaints) all week, like I usually do.


Krystal June 3, 2016 at 3:51 pm

1. Checked out my Safeway Just for U coupons and scored a free Starbucks drink (I actually have another one to use by the 14th), a free doughnut on National Doughnut Day, and used other deals to stock our fridge for our upcoming house sitter while we are gone. We don’t stock it to the brim, but she’s a great friend and a cheap house sitter, so we like to leave her some bonus food.
2. Lined dried my laundry yet again–this weather is great.
3. Thinned my carrots and saved them to put into a side salad for tonight’s dinner, which also contains leftover arugula and volunteer lettuce from our garden.
4. Batched together some last minute travel purchases (hard to find sensitive skin sunblock is much cheaper than driving all over town to find it), and cheaper pet items (bulk treats to keep our cats happy), to obtain free shipping. I have mixed feelings about Amazon (fueling bad buying habits of Americans & all that packaging, yet employing half of my city), but I try to use it wisely 3-4 times a year.
5. Watering tonight well after sunset for our garden, and again tomorrow AM before we leave for an overnight camping trip. It saves water which saves $ and is eco-conscious, and I too refuse to water my lawn (except if it’s been dry on the 4th of July when the neighborhood goes nuts with the pyrotechnics!)


rjr June 3, 2016 at 5:34 pm

1. Used a $1 coupon and a 20% coupon at CVS to buy cleaning supplies.
2. Invited family for brunch on Sunday. I’ll make a frittatta from .59 cents a dozen eggs from Aldi, shallot, mushrooms, and cheddar already in fridge, fruit bought on sale and a blueberry streusal coffee cake with blueberries from the freezer.
3. Bought gas for $2.16 a gallon
4. Came home instead of stopping at grocery store for chocolate or ice cream.
5. My cousin’s birthday is in a few days and found a b’day card in a pile and a small heart dish I had bought on sale for a gift in a hurry for her.


Nancy Drew June 3, 2016 at 5:37 pm

1. Used $6.50 in coupons during my grocery shop this morning
2. Cashed in $60 in store points for the groceries as well
3. Took picture of my grocery receipt and sent in to a rebate app for another dollar
4. Received the weekly bonus at the store of a BBQ sauce and spice kit for buying $x – free is my price!
5. Took DD to a consignment store, where I bought denim shorts, and she bought cutest green summer dress and denim shorts overalls – for a $30 total.


Susie's Daughter June 3, 2016 at 5:49 pm

It’s been an up and down week in the frugality department due to travel and guests but here goes…

1) While we were away in DC for a wedding last week, a new Pete’s coffee opened up and offered free drinks and sample treats for their first day. I had an ice coffee and dear spouse had some fancy iced tea with coconut milk. Yum! Neither of us had eaten breakfast so it was perfect.

2) And Pete’s was also giving away coffee beans so we got a 1/4 pound for us and 1/4 pound for our hosts. I am sure the West Coast folks know more about Pete’s than the us in the East?

3) One neighbor gave us three extra tomato starts and another friend gave us a bag of lettuce grown in her hoop house. I will make sure they get some zucchini when the time comes.

4) Making good use of rhubarb and froze some asparagus this week since that is all that we have ready at this point.

5) Haven’t found any change on the ground – looked hard while we were in DC even! BUT I did find .90 worth of returnable bottles and cans this week on the roads around our house. One neighbor pulled over to make sure our car was OK when I stopped to pick up a bunch of cans (and litter). I had to smile.


Robin June 4, 2016 at 1:48 pm

Peets is awesome coffee – we get all our beans from them.


Susie's Daughter June 7, 2016 at 11:38 am

As if to illustrate how little I know about it – I spelled it wrong! 🙂


Jhnv June 3, 2016 at 7:28 pm

1. Gave a friend unused passes to NYC sites, museums etc, leftover from my recent trip.
2. Gave another friend 2trip pass on NYC subway.
3. Baked chicken in bulk for weekend.
4. Checked out local auction house for bread box and patio set for one of our kids.
5. Continue to reduce wardrobe, filling that donate bag. Feels good.
6. Did not shop online.


Beth June 3, 2016 at 8:11 pm

1.. Used my free car wash pass.
2. Got free doughnut with daughter today.
3. Daughter used coupon for a free body spray at Bath and body.
4. She wanted/needed new summer others, used gift card.
5.Watched free Netflix tonight, we are on episode 5 for season two of Gilmore girls, we love it!
6. Got free men’s deodorant in the mail this week.
7. Only got gas at Costco food and walked away from all the tempting store stuff.


Bee June 4, 2016 at 4:42 am

My daughter and I used to watch Gilmore Girls together when she was a teenagers. It is a great mother-daughter show?


Madeline June 3, 2016 at 11:24 pm

1. Cooked/Ate meatless meals for the whole week.
2. Got gas at $1.97 at Costco today! Other stations in area are charging $ 2.15.
3. Watched some videos on how to cut my husband’s hair– will try by next haircut need…
4. Borrowed a couple of good movies from our library.
5. Used VINEGAR and water spray to clean my kitchen!!


Gina in KY June 4, 2016 at 3:37 am

1. Made a very yummy black bean soup with pantry items and veggies in the crisper. Still trying to wrangle in the grocery shopping expenditures and use what I have before I race to the store.
2. While on an errand in another large city yesterday, I visited the Goodwill Outlet store and found a couple of items to resell (one of which is a gorgeous and perfect Wilson Leather kids jacket). On another note, the store was not very busy for once and I was first up on the bins (if you have never witnessed the changing of the bins at a GW Outlet store, definitely put it on your bucket list) which I usually avoid. Even then, I find that 98% of the stuff is trash, so it turns out I wasn’t really missing any good vintage stuff. I know I have said this so many times here, but I miss the old days of thrifting so much.
3. Made PB&J sandwiches and brought apples and water while on the errand in the city.
4. Summer free events start this weekend around town, including Shakespeare in the Park, flea markets, art shows and concerts on our waterfront. I am compiling a list of these events to resort to when we are in the mood for social activities.
5. Finally made it down on the library request list for a newer book I have been tempted to buy several times. It’s good, but I am glad I patiently waited.


Marcia June 4, 2016 at 4:32 pm

A mostly frugal fail –and frustrating–week. Freezer door was left open for overnight, and I had to go through a lot of soggy containers. Only lost a box and half of fudgcicles and a couple English muffins. Everything else was either still partially frozen and returned to the freezer or became part of the menu for the next couple days.

Fail #2: Have had a problem with mice in basement getting into kitchen and LITERALLY eating my dishwasher, which is 15 months old. Husband has fixed it twice and thought we were good. Have only trapped three mice and there are more than that! It leaked again today, all over the basement. I let it finish washing the dishes and then turned it off and rinsed them by hand. Husband’s first possible day to work on it will be Tuesday.

Fail #3..Husband spent two days so far working on putting new oil pan in his car. It’s taking forever because of stuck bolts which he has to soak with penetrating oil before they will come off. Now he’s trying to get them back on and having almost as much trouble.

Success #1: Saved 28% at grocery store this week with coupons, sales, and BOGOs.
2. Removed a number of grease stains from my tee shirts so they are fit to wear to the gym again. Stain Stick and dish soap helped.
3. Used up all leftovers this week, being clever with half a can of diced tomatoes, a little bit of this and that. Made a black bean and corn salad which is still hanging about after three meals, but not much left. We love it. Made chicken salad out of leftover roast chicken pieces. Made a cake from an outdated cake mix by adding extra baking powder, which worked quite well.
4. Cleaned a food cupboard (mice again!) and found some things are not getting properly rotated, so will attempt to fix that. I do TRY, but you know how it is when you want dinner on the table and you reach for the first can or jar of what you’re looking for!!
5. Didn’t go to a great craft show today so we could take care of our home problems, thereby saving some money on food and purchases. And making our day a little more boring in the process. Still, these things have to be done.



Jen@FrugalSteppingStones June 4, 2016 at 6:23 pm

I cut my son’s and my husband’s hair with clippers. No one has made fun of them yet, so I must be doing OK. My daughter’s bestie is Mexican and is bilingual, and we started learning some Spanish for free through Duolingo.


LisaC June 5, 2016 at 6:36 am

1. Wrote an article for Textbroker, it got accepted.
2. Challenged my receipt at the grocery store, they refunded my money, and I asked them to put it back on my account, not give me cash. (cash seems to get spent more quickly for me)
3. Doing research on how to re-caulk our shower stall instead of paying someone.
4. Moved plants around in my yard instead of buying new.
5. Cooked breakfast at home this Sunday instead of trying to use that 1/2 price coupon again.

Fail: Went out for a nice seafood meal with DH. Locals discounts are over for the season, and spent far more than I intended. It was delicious though! I plan to hang chicken necks from a nearby dock for the rest of the summer if I’m craving blue crabs again.


Lide June 5, 2016 at 11:20 am

1. Got together with family for pizza (frugal fail) & a free concert – unfortunately last 1/2 hour got rained out but everyone had a good time.
2. Hubby, myself & friends have started putting the new siding on the house – it’s harder than we thought but common sense & a few DYI youtude videos are making it work for way less than the pros charge; & it looks great!
3. Made lunch for the “work crew” without having to buy anything – all stuff I already had in the pantry & freezer.
4. Leftovers for supper tonight; plus put several ready to eat meals in the freezer.
5. Youngest daughter is working on her baking certificate at the local community college – free loaves of yummy artisian bread for Mom & Dad!


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