Five Frugal Things

by Katy on December 12, 2016 · 94 comments

  1. I set up the 9-foot tall artificial Christmas tree that I had garbage picked while dropping my son off at college in September. I did buy a stand for it from the company, but that’ll pay for itself in two years. My older son was aghast at the very notion of an artificial tree, and asked “But what about the smell?!” To which I replied, “Want to smell a tree? Go outside.” I really am mother of the year.
  2. I logged onto my library’s website to renew all my checked out materials, as well as to put a couple of books on hold. Both of the books that I wanted were already at my branch, so I’ll walk over this afternoon to pick them up. Have I ever mentioned how much I love libraries?
  3. I took public transportation from my sister’s house in The Bronx to Newark airport, which was made especially interesting by the addition of everyone dressed as Santa for Santacon. People dressed as Santa in order to go bar hopping in NYC? That’s some mighty fine people watching! Some might say a million drunk Santas are even better than an expensive Broadway show.
  4. I added the 43¢ in NYC found change to my Found Change Challenge  jar. It actually should have been 25¢ more, but I used a quarter that I found in a parking meter to pay for . . . parking.
  5. I brought my own bagels and cream cheese to eat during my six hour flight, I downloaded two episodes of The Crown from Netflix to watch on airplane mode instead of renting a $10 movie screen thingy, (iPad?) and I didn’t buy a sexy Mrs. Santa suit.

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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{ 94 comments… read them below or add one }

Emily @ The Southern Belle Blogs December 12, 2016 at 12:45 pm

That’s great! I haven’t been too frugal this month (other than selling a bass guitar I never used to a coworker for her son’s Christmas – which is a win). I’ll be better come January.


Denise December 13, 2016 at 3:09 am

Well done on the guitar- I found it hard to let go of mine because it was part of that process of letting go of that fantasy of myself as someone who played guitar, when I wasn’t willing to practise or to take lessons to improve. Glad you got a frugal win too.



Krystal December 12, 2016 at 12:57 pm

1. Walked to the library yesterday so my husband could pick up some books, while returning others. I had renewed mine online, and it was free exercise for us and the dog.
2. My friend teaches Barre3 so I attended her class on a free pass. Made use of my trip to another neighborhood by stopping at Whole Foods for some meat items I can’t get at my local co-op. Not cheap meat, but I tend to get the good stuff for other reasons, and I also batched errands!
3. Booked a secret shop tomorrow night, free dinner for my husband and I PLUS a small stipend.
4. I tested my TV (free from my dad) for a DTV in-device antenna, with great success. We now have about 15 free channels.
5. Ate free lunch at my weekend volunteer training, which I am not sure was worth it. Dominos pizza is pretty bad, so says my stomach.


dawnelle December 12, 2016 at 4:29 pm

I cannot eat Dominos- any other pizza is fine. But not that one. So strange!


Lindsey December 12, 2016 at 1:31 pm

1. Replaced our broken (ceramic) compost bucket lid with a saucer that we never use.
2. Bought a christmas gift (Lego set) for our 7 year old son at a locally owned toy/hobby store and used a giftcard + $10 off coupon, bringing the original total to $4.74 for a $22 item.
3. Bought a pair of new-looking Dexter brand ladies shoes at Goodwill for $4.99. Will list them on eBay for $18 ish, as that seems to be the going rate. Not a huge return on investment, but a return nonetheless.
4. My husbands iPhone 5C finally died and the repair will cost $70 (more than the phone is worth), so he bought a Motorola (gasp – his first non iPhone) for $100.
5. Made cloth napkins as a gift for my sister and brother-in-law.


Reese December 12, 2016 at 6:45 pm

I see iPhone 4S’s going for $50 here, and the 5C’s going for $100-$150. You still might be able to get something out of that phone!


Marilyn December 12, 2016 at 8:18 pm

Lindsey, actually you would be getting a huge return on your investment (the Dexter shoes). I figure your return would be more than 200%. That’s fantastic!


Is it a need or a want December 12, 2016 at 1:33 pm

(1) Saw a friend who mentioned she needed to buy winter boots. I have a coupon book that I purchased as a school fundraiser. Let her cull the coupons she wanted. It always seems other people want the ones I don’t and I always use enough coupons on items I would have purchased or for free items so I make back the cost of the book:)
(2) Have been on top of fruit going just a bit sad/bad. My family can’t get enough of the crisps I generate from these fruit rescues.
(3) Purchased hats earlier in fall from my favourite volunteer thrift shop for weekend at church when they ask for them as a donation. I purchased all new hand knit hats at a rate of buy one get three free. So 4 for a dollar in total.
(4) Made stash of homemade breakfast burritos and egg/sausage/English muffins. Ingredients on sale, free or must freeze now.
(5) Wearing a rotation of 4 long sleeved shirts in different colours with a simple Christmas emblem on each. Purchased 15+ years ago for $5.00each. I take them out December 1 and put away January 1 ( in a cute recycled Christmas bag). They look festive and they can take the washing, saving the wear on my regular shirts.


Lindsey December 12, 2016 at 1:38 pm

1. I work in a small place with five co-workers and we have all been there a long time because this is a wonderful agency. A few years ago someone got on the frugal bandwagon and pretty soon all of us became what we call thoughtful cheapskates. For birthdays the company pays for a lunch for all of us and gives a gift certificate to the birthday person. For a gift from fellow staffers, we decided that we would all contribute to one gift for the person and that it would be used. So, for one of us who knits, we each brought in a skein of yarn (or two or three) and gave her a big box of yarn. A quilter got a nice box of material scraps. This week it was the birthday for the person who absolutely hates to spend money on shampoo and soap. So the rest of us trolled our bathrooms (and those of relatives who happen to travel a lot, too) and gave her a huge box full of hotel shampoos and soaps. It was a hoot. One person on our staff never travels but she found a Fred Meyer close out sale of full sized shampoos for 37 cents each! She bought a dollar’s worth and contributed those. The gifts are meant to be useful but also funny. For my birthday one year, I got packets of seeds, some used and some unopened but a season old. It was great. For Christmas we do a cookie exchange, so no gifts for each other then either. It is really, really nice (and thrifty) to work with a small group of like-minded people.
2. Made soup or casseroles for three dinners this week. Each time I made double so now I have three meals waiting in the freezer for next time I am too lazy or rushed to cook.
3. Another night we had a baked potato bar. We’d purchased a buy one get one free special on potatoes so have been using them up. The bar was basically the spuds covered with leftover chili or cheese or turkey gravy I’d frozen after Thanksgiving. Added a salad and it was a thrifty and easy dinner.
4. repaired two socks that were headed for the garbage.
5. Used the library for two books.


Bee December 12, 2016 at 3:54 pm

Bake potatoes and salad are a household dinner favorite. I feel silly because it has never occurred to me to use the turkey gravy on the potatoes. How perfect. Thank you for the idea.


Sharie December 13, 2016 at 5:50 am

I love “thoughtful cheapskates”!


Gina December 14, 2016 at 4:26 am

You’re fortunate to work with the Thoughtful. Cheapskates. I worked for a small company – 10 coworkers – who were all miserable people (I only stayed 2 years – the women were such nasty, hateful people). The ringleader of the office, a loudmouth bully, made the Christmas rules – we were expected (no opt-outs) to buy everyone a $50 gift (mind you – her gifts never lioked like $50 gifts!). Anyway it was $500 out of pocket at Christmas for people I didn’t even like! It cut into my funds to gift those I love. When leaving the company the owner – a too nice person who was terrible at managing people – gave the excuse for the nasties – that she felt badly for them because they must be terribly unhappy to be that nasty. She asked that I not let their meanness cheat me out of a good job. I told her life was too short & I didn’t want to end up like them. Best decision ever and made any work situation after completely tolerable in comparison!


Betty Winslow December 12, 2016 at 1:48 pm

1. Friend’s 11 yo GS’s coat was stolen; I put out a plea on FB and ended up with a coat that will fit him now and two (a spring and a winter) that he can grow into. All I have to do is ship it.
2. It snowed heavily this week, so it’s time for my new-to-me snow boots. I bought a pair of Ugg style boots off FB last year and the lady threw in some knee high faux riding boots. They fit well, although they don’t keep your feet warm, but they look cite, would be comfy to wear all day at work, instead of having to change into other shoes, and they at least kept my feet dry.
3. Looking through the sale papers before tossing, I found a 10% UPS shipping coupon for Staples, which is where I’ll ship the coat from.
4. Found a cute fleece top in my GD’s favorite color that will be the size she’s in next, and it was marked down to $2! Hello, birthday gift!
5. I do dislike shopping at Walmart, but that’s the only store in town that had a men’s small sized coat left, so while I was there picking it up for my friend’s GS (someone else is paying for it), I bought a few ingredients for the upcoming Mealtrain meal and bake sale, so I didn’t have to go out later this week. This cold (my third in three months) is kicking my butt and I have to go to work tomorrow.


Denise December 13, 2016 at 3:18 am

Good grief. Stealing a child’s coat…well done on getting the replacements.

I have a pair of Wellington boots and added (pre-vegetarian days) a good quality pair of sheepskin insoles. They made a huge difference to the warmth factor when gardening or slogging through muddy paths in winter.


Julia December 12, 2016 at 1:49 pm

1. Made chili yesterday using a cup of dry beans, leftover meatloaf, and ketchup packets from fast food, plus spices. Leftovers are for lunch today.
2. Baked bread yesterday. I am enjoying our foray back to homemade instead of store-bought. We can get through one homemade loaf per week. So far, no stale bread, but when there is, I will freeze or toast for crumbs.
3. Finally finished a crocheted granny-square pillow for my daughter’s Christmas present. It took me forever but it’s done as of last night. Speaking of gifts, I’m wrapping in brown kraft paper, leftover newspapers (comics), or a roll of giftwrap given to me. Using saved ribbons and brown twine for ribbon and bows. Gifts are all vintage (tie pin, handtowels) or homemade (vanilla flavoring, pillows, ornaments).
4. We didn’t get a tree; since we’re moving after New Year’s, I didn’t want the mess or the fuss. Used our same old decorations and just did up the mantel. It looks pretty! I’m also moving all the decorations into two plastic bins and using the cardboard boxes for moving household goods instead.
5. I’ve been Freecycling to get rid of items, consigning and using the money to buy other items at the consignment store for the new house — hooks, doorknobs, rugs. So far I’m at net zero.


Cindy in the South I December 12, 2016 at 1:56 pm

Seriously dying over your comment, “I really am mother of the year”….lol. I would tell my sons the same thing because trees are expensive and messy!
1. I soaked my nylons, sweaters, and blouse in leftover bathwater. I added a little bit of Dawn dish soap, and have in the past used other types of dish soap…whatever is on sale. That way, the water is not wasted.
2. I went to visit my sons and attended church in the college town where they live. I enjoyed the free Christmas music.
3. I stopped at the Aldi in the college town, and bought mayo for $1.89, large Salsa for $1.69, 69 cents a dozen eggs, 75 cents for a box of crackers, $2.49 for 10 lbs of potatoes, and $1.49 for peanut butter. I always stock up when I go visit my sons because the groceries are cheaper there.
4. I drove through the forest on the way home, always beautiful!!
5. I took a nap…probably my favorite thing to do….lol.
FRUGAL FAIL: I seldom eat out….maybe once a month. I had to do work in a town where I do not normally work, and rather than eating my peanut butter sandwich, I stopped at a local hole in the wall restaurant (which are always the best places to eat in my opinion) to get a chicken sandwich. It was prepared from scratch, was breast meat, and was delicious, but that was not cheap….$4.99.


Denise December 13, 2016 at 3:55 am


May I mention (sorry) that if you or whoever bathed in that water didn’t shower first to wash dried pee and bits of poo off themselves, you might very well be washing your stuff in unpleasantness, to say the least. My mother was a theatre nurse and refused to take baths because of this issue. Sorry to be gross, but better safe than sorry with this kind of thing.



mel December 13, 2016 at 10:05 am

Surely there would be minute residue of pee or poo on most people ? I understood urine is generally sterile and would think a bathful of water and detergent would dissipate any of it to irrelevant concentration and the clothes would be rinsed thoroughly and dried anyway. I don’t think she’ll have her clothes in her mouth and practices general hand washing and hygiene anyway so any ‘risk’ would be miniscule;)


Jennifer December 13, 2016 at 11:39 am

My grandparents tell stories of taking baths with the same water their parents had already bathed in. The youngest child got the funkiest water. Its like the toilet/ toothbrush thing. When you flush the toilet, microscopic literal “shit” goes all over your bathroom. Now ask yourself, is there anything laying in your bathroom that may be near your mouth? Hand towel or toothbrush maybe? The truth is we all eat some degree of feces whether it be on improperly washed vegetables, rat terds in cereal, or otherwise. Sorry to be blunt but it’s just the truth.


tia December 14, 2016 at 9:14 pm

I love reading all these posts about water. There are so many places suffering from drought that conserving water is worth thinking about. That and the failing infrastructures nation wide. I was reading that a city near me was being forced by federal government to update their sewer system…they had put it off about 10 years and it had gone far beyond acceptable conditions. The city was going to raise everones sewer charges an additional 50 bucks a month. Not a nice surprise.


Jackie B. December 13, 2016 at 12:50 pm

I have a throw rug that is a too heavy for the washing machine. Every few months I wash it in the bathtub, sometimes after I bathe.


Denise December 13, 2016 at 1:04 pm

Urine isn’t sterile and the simple solution to solve the microscopic amounts of unpleasantness that come from flushing the loo is a radical thing called putting the lid down before you flush!! Watched a gross programme that demonstrated that “flush splash back” travels up to 16 feet if the lid is left open. Toothbrush anyone?

And it will all be in the bath water, and by its very nature, more likely to be pathogenic bacteria than the billions on our skin naturally.

Put it like this: I have a good shower before I ever get in a bath.


Cindy in the South December 13, 2016 at 5:06 pm

Hmmm I am going to post in my zero waste group and see what they think. You bring up an interesting point. However, in many places in the U.S. there have been extreme droughts and therefore, extreme measures. Also, many in my zero waste group only bathe or shower once a week. I do taka a bath every day (and steriliza the tub beforeand). It will be interesting to see what several of the environmental groups I am in will say, because most are far more hardcore than I am in zero waste, water conservation issues.


Cindy in the South December 13, 2016 at 5:46 pm

Well, I have had 26 responses in just a few minutes and all but a couple agree with me. Some printed out there is per and poo in washing machines. I think, though, it was more my using Dawn to wash the clothes, then I rinse with fresh water, and air dry to save energy that way also.

mel December 13, 2016 at 7:06 pm

Do you walk barefoot on grass, eat from a restaurant or shake hands when you meet someone? Not meaning to sound rude… Just curious!


Cindy in the South I December 14, 2016 at 5:38 am

Me? Yes. Several people in my zero waste group pointed out that they think Americans try to be too sanitary and that having some germs around would be actually good for us. They went into a complicated discussion of microorganisms, etc. that was very interesting. I seem to recall there was controversy recently in the news about antibacterial soap also. The argument that members of the zero waste group put forth for what I do regarding washing clothes in bathwater, in a nutshell, was that if we are too sanitary it compromises our immune system because we are not used to some dirt. It was an interesting view Denise put forth, and I was curious what members of the Zero Waste group thought. A lot of folks use their bath water to water plants but since my backyard is usually drowning in water (I live in flat, slightly swampy, humid, farming land country of the deep South), I do not need to water the bamboo which tries to overtake my backyard all summer long…lol. IT turned out several members of the group use their bathwater just like I do, to wash clothes. They also mentioned having a plunger contraption to agitate the clothes to get them cleaner with the Dawn Soap. I have my great grandma’s washboard….lol. It is always interesting to get different opinions on conserving water, and other resources of our planet.

Gina in KY December 12, 2016 at 2:20 pm

My frugal proficiency could use some improvement, but I still try…

1. Signed and sent back paperwork to sell my VW Jetta back to VW (it’s a diesel). The offer is actually decent and more than I could get if I sold it outright or traded it in for another vehicle. My car has almost 150,000 miles on it. The down side is I need to find another car and car shopping is stressful for me. I have already decided I will not drive a “luxury” car (will be looking for affordability, safety and efficiency as the main priorities and, really, I will probably stick with VW).
2. I checked my free credit score and my score is almost what it was pre-divorce (in a great range). I have been working on paying off debts for almost two years.
3. Eating meals at home, using up left-overs and making holiday treats with already stored items (mixed nut brittle, saltine toffee and fudge).
4. Bought a lovely, large Victorian-style rug at one of the thrift stores. They sold it for $10 due to a spot where the color bled (wrong cleaner?) My couch hides it. I love in a 120+ house and, quite frankly, something too new would stand out horribly! Plus, I have two active boys and dogs that are hell on rugs. I froze and cleaned the rug before putting it in my house.
5. Keeping lights off when not using and furnace down. I am hoping it helps the electric/gas bill; however, I doubt it. The utility monopoly here has a “basic” charge that is always more than I use! 🙁


VanessaKC December 12, 2016 at 6:29 pm

A friend of mine was paid so well for his Jetta TDI that he bought a certified used Golf and had a nice chunk leftover. Although I’ve never had a diesel, as a die hard VW/Audi owner, it pleases me to know that they’re taking care of those that were hurt by their dishonesty. I hope you get one you love even more!


Gina in KY December 13, 2016 at 8:04 pm

I agree!! My plan is to buy a certified used as well. The Jetta, which I love, was also used, so I feel like this is an excellent offer (although I’m going to miss the car!)


Elizabeth December 12, 2016 at 2:27 pm

1. I have someone coming to pick up a set of children’s books today and two people coming tomorrow for a wooden castle and a girls winter coat. Both listed on a Facebook buying group. Have about 20 items listed on eBay and a number listed on Craigslist. One of the things I’ve been getting better at is deciding to get rid of things, even if I like them (because I don’t need a whole bunch of the same thing). For example, I’m selling two matching mother daughter Jessie Steele aprons. I still like them, they’re beautiful…but they’re aprons and I have about three others. I don’t need that many so I’m selling the ones I know will sell.
2. I’m already doing some shopping for next Christmas! I saw something perfect for my brother in law and it was on sale, plus I had a 25% off coupon. Since I already got him his gift for this year, I ordered it and will put it away for next year. I keep a list of gifts bought in advance so I don’t forget. Plus, buying throughout the year keeps right before Christmas from being really expensive.
3. We are going to visit my in-laws in February. When this new American Express bill hits at the end of the month, we should have enough points saved up for two tickets. And I can use my PayPal account to pay for the third (my husband’s ticket is already paid for as he has to be there for work).
4. We only ate out once this week…subs and Noodles on Friday night brought home so we could use our own drinks. Husband is quickly going to the grocery store for hamburger buns because I’ve been craving burgers. Since we have ground beef, cheese and frozen fries we’ll make the meal I’ve been craving rather than going to a restaurant.
5. Downloaded the book club book for next month on my library app. I have so many books I haven’t read already that I’m not buying any books. So if I can’t get the book at the library I don’t go to book club.


Mand01 December 12, 2016 at 2:38 pm

1. Had dinner at my parents last night.
2. Re-jigged our December budgets over breakfast.
3. Wearing all thrifted clothes to work.
4. Christmas is within budget, and no debt. We save all year and have never gone into debt for Christmas.
5. We have purchased all our Christmas dinner items over the past few weeks and are pretty much ready to go.


A. Marie December 12, 2016 at 2:47 pm

(1) I love Lindsey’s #1. We have a similar type of gift exchange with our Bestest Neighbors across the street. Secondhand, recycled, and off-the-wall selections rule. And we’ve been passing some of our gift boxes and bags back and forth for over a decade before they finally fall apart.

(2) Frugal Fail but not really: DH’s new, extremely expensive hearing aids. If they get DH a little more back in the game, they’ll be well worth it.

(3) We also put the hearing aids on our one credit card, paid the card off in full when the bill came, and used the card’s points to purchase useful stuff. (A case of canned cat food and a case of TP, to be precise.)

(4) The neighbors for whom DH does dog-walking gave us a $40 Aldi’s gift card for Thanksgiving. We paid our first visit to our local Aldi’s yesterday, and I think it’s safe to say we’ll be back.

(5) Finally, the four most beautiful words in the English language this time of year: “My holiday shopping’s done.” The prezzies are mainly charitable donations, secondhand clothes, library sale books, and homegrown herbs.


LisaC December 12, 2016 at 3:12 pm

I’ve been looking for a cheap place to buy TP. Hubs buys it at Sam’s, getting the giant rolls that don’t fit!


Kim December 12, 2016 at 4:48 pm

I’ve been buying it at Staples with my Rewards points. You also get $2 for each ink or toner cartridge you recycle as long as you buy $30 of ink every 6 months, I think. DH has a corporate Staples card for his job so I get the credit for his purchases on my Staples Rewards. So free tp for us!


Denise December 13, 2016 at 4:00 am

What is “TP”?


Kim December 13, 2016 at 4:50 am

Toilet paper

Denise December 13, 2016 at 1:05 pm

Aha! Loo roll over here. Thanks, Kim.

LisaC December 12, 2016 at 3:10 pm

1. Hubs and I aren’t buying each other gifts this year.
2. Taking many trips to see relatives, eating from the freezer in between. Found out I have MANY buns for burgers and hot dogs left over from summer cookouts. Consolidated them all. Thinking about getting a magnetic dry erase board to keep a running inventory on our freezer, with tally marks that can be erased.
3. My adult children asked if we could all spend less than 25 each on each other. SO happy my kids are at such an adult decision making age and not asking parents for handouts.
4. Drank the airplane water on the flight to see my daughter, didn’t buy any food or drinks in the airports on the way.
5. Visited my daughter, and proudly watched her pack food from her freezer and pantry to help a friend who lost a job and car in the same month. Offered to pay for milk and fresh fruit at the store. (Funny frugal fail: While buying the milk and fruit, I picked up a bottle of wine for myself. Put groceries with the other food in the back of the car. Daughter took the groceries to her friend, got back in the car, and received a happy text thanking her for the food and wine. ha!)


Denise December 13, 2016 at 4:02 am


Your daughter clearly got good genes and good values from her Mom! That’s a lovely (and funny) story. I’ll bet on this occasion, your daughter’s friend will have enjoyed that wine even more than you would have.



Marie December 12, 2016 at 3:20 pm

Enjoying free xmas activites

Working with DS25 on his frugality…3rd gen frugal i am hoping….which saw a number of his friends come over enjoy our home had a few drinks for minimal cost…was good to see.

Decided this year we are too old…for some events and wont be participating next year which will free us up to focus on what we have and enjoy that.

Putting up old handmade decorations by the children.

Trying to multi cook for all family to spare some the trouble and use up all food….i.e. use all fruit…lettece for no waste.


Amanda December 12, 2016 at 3:37 pm

I started watching The Crown today as I was home with a sick baby who needed to be held all day long. It is a captivating show isnt it!! I can’t wait to swoon over biopics of Princess Kate when I am 90.


Denise December 13, 2016 at 4:05 am

Hopefully she’ll be Queen Kate by then! Either that or King Charles (if Prince Charles keeps that as his regal name – we don’t have a great history with King Charleses (word??)!) will be about 120 years old!


Jennifer December 12, 2016 at 3:46 pm

Yay found $. I found a $5 bill just last week. It’s usually pennies but every so often…


kathleen December 12, 2016 at 3:50 pm

1. Husband had a discount card for Home Depot 15% off one receipt (basically everything you buy in one trip). He needed new batteries for cordless tools and a hose for our pump house. I’ve been wanting a Norfolk pine, so I went with him to include it in the discount. After looking at their supply, I decided I really didn’t need one after all. So he saved 15% and I saved 100%. 🙂
2. Knock on wood, but I can barely remember the last time the puppy had an accident in the house, so we are back to using VERY few paper towels.
3. My best friend will arrive for a week’s visit in a couple of days. Today I winterized the guest bed by making it up with long-owned flannel sheets and down blanket. Old friends who don’t care what your house looks like are the most frugal (and enjoyable) kind of company.
4. My granddaughters (10 & 11) suggested yesterday that I should go back to coloring my hair. It was a good opportunity to help them understand the ongoing cost of such things. a) I told them how much one salon visit cost me. b) I told them how often I had to go to keep it looking decent; for me at least every six weeks. c) We did the math and they realized it cost over $1000 a year. Home coloring does not cover my gray in a nice way, and my hair is so thick and long that it takes more than one package per use (not to mention it is a chore I HATE). And, hey, I like it au natural, so get over it, girlies!
5. I haven’t replace my wrecked car. (Though I am renting one while my friend is visiting since husband will be working out of town again. I used a membership discount from an organization I belong to, reducing the rent slightly.)


Denise December 13, 2016 at 4:20 am


1. Love, love the 100% saving – made me laugh.

2. Puppy – swoon: still miss my Paddy. Any chance of some puppy-love photos, for a lonely dog-misser?

3. Flannel sheets: it’s just past midday in England and I am tucked up in bed, with my flannel sheet. I hear you on the cosy/toastie equation, for both beds and old friends!

4. I put semi-permanent colour in my hair in my early forties, when I was just beginning to get grey hairs in my mousey-brown hair. Then I thought: why do I have to pretend that I’m not ageing, why can’t society accept me as I am? And I answered myself (I have very agreeable, consensus-based conversations with myself – can’t think why that might be…) bugger “them” all, assuming anyone else even cares! I agreed with that wholeheartedly so let it grow out. Yayyyy to grey, I say.

5. Am blessed with an operational car, but you have my sympathies. Must be a real pain.

On the issues of conversations with myself, I have only started this since my dog, Paddy, died: before that, we chatted (he genuinely made the funniest little noises when I spoke to him) and I’m sure that he usually agreed with me.. which might indicate delusion on my part. I’m sure that’s true, but I simply can’t believe it!



Bee December 13, 2016 at 5:27 am

Dogs are a lot of company. I do believe there are a few who understand everything said by humans. The dog that I have now is not the smartest, but he is exceedingly intuitive picking up on every emotion. He would have been a great therapy dog.


kathleen December 13, 2016 at 12:11 pm

Denise, I have conversations with myself too…even the puppy looks askance at me. 🙂 He is a funny little guy who likes to watch TV. He goes wild for all the Christmas commercials, running over to stand in front and dance on his back legs. He is SO entertaining. I need to put a video on my blog. I do have some photos up of him at

Bee, dogs really are a lot of company. I laugh out loud many times a day at our little clown.


Denise December 13, 2016 at 1:16 pm


He’s adorable- and the TV watching is hilarious. Particularly liked Rudy and his dad sleeping together. I so miss that….


Bee December 12, 2016 at 4:50 pm

1) We purchased our Christmas tree over the weekend. While at the garden center, I was given enough evergreen boughs to decorate my fireplace mantles and tables. The branches make the house smell wonderful, look festive and didn’t cost an extra penny.

2) I am reusing my Christmas ornaments, wreaths, lights, ribbons and some wrapping supplies from last year. Everything has been seen before with the exception of the tree. My hubby refuses to have an artificial one. Now, how can I learn to deal with his real tree madness as well as Katy did with her son’s?

3) I am sticking with 4 gifts per child- something they want, need, wear and read.

4) I am always cooking it seems. Today I made a batch of granola and used up some odds and ends in the pantry in the process including the end of a bag of nuts, hemp seeds, and banana chips. I also roasted beets and baked some too-soft apples with cinnamon.

5) I have found out that being frugal is excellent for your health and overall well-being. This year we strictly limited our restaurant meals to special occasion and travel. I also began cooking nearly everything from scratch, because I have developed food allergies. Furthermore I began to walk more, drive less, ordered a farm share and limited my meat intake. Today I went to the doctor and my blood work looked exceptionally better than it did last year! So I must conclude that an NCA lifestyle is good for you and your bank account. 🙂


Marie December 12, 2016 at 5:18 pm

Very well done and inspiring!


Be December 13, 2016 at 4:57 am

Thank you for the kind words, Marie. Frugality is a good thing!


LisaC December 13, 2016 at 2:42 am

Maybe if you make it his job to clean the pine needles, he might reconsider next year. 🙂


Bee December 13, 2016 at 4:56 am

My dear hubby cleans up the darn pine needles every year with a smile on his face. Now if I could only get him to do the Christmas cards and wrap the presents.


Ethel December 14, 2016 at 7:15 am

HAHAHAHA! My hubby asked me if we could do an artificial tree this year. I said no way. I grew up with real Christmas trees, and it’s really important to me. The scent of the tree, the feel of the needles, the way the lights reflect differently-it all brings back happy memories. Not to mention, we don’t have room to store an artificial tree every year.

I will gladly clean up the pine needles around my house for a few weeks! This is my one Frugal Fail that I proudly own up to and repeat every year 🙂


Mrs. Picky Pincher December 12, 2016 at 5:09 pm

I love it!

This week:

1. I purchased Christmas wrapping supplies at the dollar store, which are leaps and bounds cheaper than wrapping at the regular store.

2. I made homemade boozy caramel chocolate truffles for a work baking competition. I don’t think there’s a prize for winning, but I made a five-star dessert for $5, so that’s a win!

3. I’m using a Groupon this month to sample unlimited dance classes at a local studio. After the month is up, I’ll just attend the classes that I like.

4. We had a minor plumbing leak today, which we repaired ourselves.

5. My dad will be visiting us this weekend and I plan on cooking homemade meals instead of eating out.


susanna d December 12, 2016 at 5:28 pm

1. Did an at-home “belated birthday” dinner for my husband. We’d talked about going to a fancy steakhouse place while on vacation last week, but my husband said he’d prefer a home grilled steak dinner. Huge savings – we buy half sides of grass fed beef and pay the same per pound regardless of the cut. Meaning that delicious porterhouse steak was $3.69 per pound. Entire dinner came in under $15 – similar dinner at the restaurant would have been at least $100. And we loved the atmosphere, the privacy, the view from our bay window – and each other’s company.
2. We were able to salvage casings from two of our original windows and one door – forty year old cedar boards that hadn’t been well cared for broke pretty easily when we removed them, so being able to reuse at least some of them was a huge help. Also salvaged about half of the floor trim. We were able to pick up a “contractor bundle” of trim at a deep discount to replace what we couldn’t save.
3. Got something in the mail from the local power company about going online to sign up for a free energy saver package. We’ll be getting free LED bulbs, a power strip, and faucet aerators in the mail in the near future. We’ve been replacing all our light bulbs with LED’s over the past few years, but we still have a few to replace. Great freebie.
4. Ordered a Duplo building set for my granddaughter for Christmas. Used Amazon gift certificates earned from swagbucks to pay for it.
5. Refilled my spray conditioner bottle for the umpteenth time. A squeeze of conditioner into the little spray bottle, fill it the rest of the way with water, give it a good shake…and I’m good for another several months. A bottle of conditioner lasts forever this way.


Cindy in the South I December 14, 2016 at 5:47 am

Wow…great idea on #5. I will have to try it. I get sooooo tired of buying conditioner for my very fine, easily tangled hair.


Ethel December 14, 2016 at 7:16 am

I know, right? This idea sounds amazing. I also have fine, easily tangled hair, and I always go through twice as much conditioner as shampoo! I’m going to try this out as well. Thanks susanna d!


Ashley C. December 12, 2016 at 5:55 pm

Portland has a Santa bar crawl also on Interstate in North Portland, I use to encounter it yearly on the yellow line heading to and from wor. I understand the drunk Santas. Word of advice. Don’t wear scrubs in from of them when their drunk, the questions never end. I absolutely love The Crown and I’m on the last episode, I love that we can download off Netflix now. We’re was this 3 years ago when I spend 10 hrs (including 2 layovers) flying to Florida.


Marybeth December 12, 2016 at 6:13 pm

1. Agreed to work 2 extra shifts this week.
2. Went to my sisters house for her birthday on Saturday. She lives in between myself and the rest of our family so it easier to do it there. She wanted lobster for dinner but didn’t know how to cook it. I took care of it. Much cheaper to have at the house then to go out with 8 people for lobster. There was a bunch of leftovers so she offered it to me. Yes please.
3. Sunday is pasta in my house. I married an Italian man. I now have a new favorite:Pasta with lobster meat. SOOO GOOD!
4. My daughter’s concert is this week at school. The school provides the dresses.
5. Made more dogfood for our dog from scraps in the freezer.


auntiali December 12, 2016 at 6:46 pm

1. Dh does the grocery shopping and I write out the list. This week ham steaks were on sale 5 for $5. He bought the wrong kind which cost $14.xx . I’ll take them back and get the right ones and it should take me 30 minutes total and I’ll save $9.

2. Will send back a shirt I bought and will get a $10 credit.

3. Made dinner last night and tonight. Dh will take the left over rotisserie chicken for lunch tomorrow.

4. Ds is coming home for Christmas and he sent me a text today to put a hold at the library to get a book he wants to read.

5. I finished up the leftover tuna fish salad.


WilliamB December 12, 2016 at 7:15 pm

auntiali – your store takes back meat? How lovely.


Teri December 12, 2016 at 6:52 pm

1. Using loyalty coupons and manufacturer coupons I bought 5 bags of our favorite Cadbury Christmas balls and got 21 cents back!
2. Bought several items at Goodwill on Senior Discount Monday that I needed around the house saved $3 over new on just one item.
3. Enjoyed a free Christmas concert Sunday evening at our church. Very professional and enjoyable.
4.Buying discounted gift cards for personal use throughout the year.
5. Didn’t buy lunch out even though it was 3pm before I got home.


Madeline December 12, 2016 at 6:53 pm

1. Put up the 28 year old fake tree, it looks real when we decorate it, and smell?Candles.

2. LOVE LOVE LOVE my library! I put 3 books on hold ( including Springfield’s autobiog. “Born to Run.” What I love is, by the time it’s my turn,I have forgotten I requested and I am sooo surprised and happy to go get my book!!!!!!

3. Made a vegetarian meal out of Long beans I got on sale at local Asian market and an Asian salad mix from grocery on sale for 1.50 due to almost out of date.

4. Hosted happy hour at my house with good friend/neighbor.Trader Joe wine and arancini from TJ’s too. Great conversation!

5. NETFLIX!!!!!!!!!! so much entertainment! At home!


Denise December 13, 2016 at 4:33 am



Bee December 13, 2016 at 1:32 pm

Bruce Sprigsteen aka “The Boss.” An American rock musician most popular in the 70s and 80s. Celebrates his working class roots. He is from the US state of New Jersey where he is a beloved Native son.


Denise December 14, 2016 at 4:20 pm

Bee – yup – I love Bruce, have seen him multiple times in London. I was giggling because Madeleine’s post said “Springfield” – had visions of HOmer Simpson singing “Born to Run….after ice cream vans”!!


Chris December 12, 2016 at 6:59 pm

1. Our dog, who has been super itchy since we got him 2 years ago, went to the vet today because the intensity of his itchiness is getting crazy – going to try a generic zyrtec to help reduce the symptoms. Not a cheap visit – all in all – but no reason for the poor pup to suffer.
2. I work tomorrow then go for a haircut with an hour in between. Will stop at the Salvation Army thrift for “Toddler Tuesday” when all kids clothes are 1/2 off. Getting a box ready to ship to our grandson so hope to find things to stuff it full!
3.Husband went to lunch today with former co-workers and chose to ride the bus rather than pay for parking – had time to read on the bus ride
4. Even though I had the car at home and could have easily found some reason to go out and about, I stayed in and worked on some lap quilts that I lost interest in last winter. No real plan for the finished quilts yet.
5. Got a card from our paper carrier and found a Starbucks card tucked away that will be sent to her as a thank you. I did check on the value and found that it had been activated – but not used – in 2013. I guess I was just waiting til the right time/person!


Denise December 13, 2016 at 4:38 am

Dog: three suggestions.

1. Buy toddlers’ strength anti-histamine syrup at the chemist’s/pharmacy. Just don’t tell them it’s for your dog.

2. Try some coconut oil rubbed in to his/her skin daily.

3. More radically – look at a raw food diet to remove carbohydrates like wheat etc. from the diet.


Sharie December 13, 2016 at 6:25 am

Our Westin was having terrible skin issues. We tried everything, eventually took him to a doggie dermatologist. Crazy expensive, but worth every penny.


Roberta December 13, 2016 at 11:07 am

Our dog was crazy itchy. We added coconut oil to his dog food — it makes his coat softer, and his skin. We used to bathe him in Head and Shoulders (vet suggestion) because the pyrethrine zinc is soothing. And we had to put him on a prescription for a while. Fortunately, once he stopped itching on the prescription and his skin healed we were able to slowly remove him from the prescription altogether.

We also had to change food, to the one our other dog is allergic to.


Roberta December 13, 2016 at 11:08 am

I find both coconut oil and Head and Shoulders at Grocery Outlet, so it’s not too dear, and definitely better than the prescription.


Robin December 13, 2016 at 1:26 pm

For itchy dog, try increasing omega-3s in the diet. Easiest and cheapest way is to grind flaxseed yourself (I use my coffee grinder). Start small in amounts and build up. My 35 lb dog get 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed per day.


Kim December 12, 2016 at 7:04 pm

FFT the Coming home from college edition!
1. I told DS#2 that since we were unable to come visit at Thanksgiving at the last minute, I would come pick him up for semester break rather than him taking the bus home. (We weren’t able to go because the car repair place put the wrong size spark plugs in the car when we had a tune-up done the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. Caused issues and had to take car back on Wednesday, which I then didn’t get back until Sunday!) For the 535 mile road trip I packed a sandwich, popcorn, fruit, a travel thermos of coffee and ice water in a Tervis water bottle which was bought new at a church sale for 25¢. No stopping to buy food.
2. Pulled over to eat my lunch in a mostly abandoned shopping center right off the interstate. There was a GW so I decided to allow myself a 10 minute break to stretch my legs. Found a Harlequin sugar bowl in a 50’s color, made by the same company as Fiesta, for $4. It’s worth about $80-90! Also 2 clips for my garden hoops, a Brown Bag cookie mold, 2 Red Sox ornaments that will be a Christmas gift and a small oil lamp. All for $10.
3. Made dinner that night for DS and 4 of his friends. I went to Aldi which is 10 minutes from the campus. Found a quarter! Made pasta with homemade sauce, cheesy Texas toast, green beans and clementines. Lots of food eaten the night before their last exams! Froze the leftover pasta sauce so he can have it after the break.
4. The hotel near campus had no vacancy I learned once I got to TN Thursday night. Normally they do. Drove to find a hotel and googled “hotels closest to me”. Found a Comfort Inn that was 2 minutes from where I had driven with a rate of $63 plus taxes. Called the hotel to verify they had a vacancy and was quoted $89 plus taxes. I asked if they would match the online rate which was through and was told they couldn’t and I would have to book online to get that rate. Said I’ll see you in 2 minutes. I then sat in the Walgreens parking lot, booked the room for the lower rate and didn’t have to provide my card info as it was you pay at arrival. Total $74 with taxes for a really nice big room and free breakfast. Saved $26 booking online.
5. DS goes to school in the land of Kroger and we don’t live Krogerland. I have a shoppers card since I buy groceries for him when I’m there. Whatever I can’t get at Aldi. Made sure to get all my Friday and 25 Days of Merry freebies. Bottle of Kraft BBQ sauce, full size bag of Werthers, Twix tree candy, full size bag of dried cranberries and a Kraft snack trio. They were out of the Lifesaver book and the jar of Planters peanuts. I stocked up on their yummy Caramel Truffle coffee and peanut butter on sale for 99¢. I stopped for gas at a Kroger on our way home and saved 3¢ a gallon. Ran in the store and got my peanuts! We ate the snack trio on our way home and the candies will be used in DSs stockings!


cathy December 13, 2016 at 8:53 pm

If you have a Kroger affiliate store near you, you can use the same rewards card. We did this on vacation in Oregon this past summer. It’s Fred Meyer there, Smith’s where we live. We could use it at Ralph’s or Kroger too. Good way to accumulate rewards points.


WilliamB December 12, 2016 at 7:14 pm

1. Sticking to the menu plan. Heck, I made a menu plan – I’d stopped for a while.

2. Rummaged through the gift box for an item for the office’s Yankee Swap.

3. Made dessert – butterscotch brownies – for office holiday pot luck. I did it because it’s easy, but it’s also inexpensive (1/4 c. butter, 1 c. brown sugar, 1/2 c. flour, 1 egg, baking powder, vanilla).

4. Inventorying the baking supplies to determine what I need to stock up on for the next year. Sadly I haven’t seen any price drops or coupons for chocolate chips, which is what I need most.

5. Focusing on emptying out the freezer, including oddities such as 2 jars of chickeny salsa. (Several months ago I made taco meat by simmering chicken in salsa and *of course* I saved the salsa for future use!)

Fail #1: Wasted an entire 1 lb container of cottage cheese, for no good reason other than I didn’t get around to eating it.

Fail #2: Used fresh oil to fry the Korean chicken wings because I couldn’t remember where I put the once-used oil from the last time I made the dish. Found the once-used oil as I was putting away the leftovers.


E December 28, 2016 at 12:23 am

Your butterscotch brownies sound amazing! Yum! Would you mind sharing the recipe? I’m in Australia and we are not huge on brownies over here so I hardly see any recipes for them!


Marcia December 12, 2016 at 8:41 pm

1. Excellent bargain from buying on line. Bought 4 pair of socks as a gift. Wrote a review when they came. Company contacted me and wanted me to re-copy the review on another part of their site where it would be seen more. I did. They sent me 4 free pair of socks as a thank you!! Doubled the gift I am giving.
2. Trying to minimize food waste–we had too much over Thanksgiving and I hate to waste. Tonight we had fresh salad with leftover hm pizza for dinner. Didn’t want to lose nearly half a pizza, and we haven’t been eating so much for lunches lately.
3. Got about 80% through the gift wrapping today. Need to pick up some tissue paper at the dollar store tomorrow –have a couple stops to make on the way back from yoga class anyhow, so will add that to the list.
4. Going to start freezing my machine made bread in 2 slice packages. Husband threw out at least half a loaf today because he didn’t put it in the fridge and it molded. Have not been eating much bread lately because he’s been on a yogurt for lunch kick. Yogurt’s been on sale/two for 1 coupons.
5. Need to write out the few Christmas cards I still send and get them in the mail within the next 3 days to make the deadline. It’s only Monday and the week is going fast already!! It’s pretty much how it always happens this time of year.


Beth L December 12, 2016 at 9:41 pm

1. At a party the host purchased tons of delivery pizzas. As people were leaving, he told people to take any unopened pies. I took a large veggie pizza. I froze 4- 2 slice portions. Ate the last bundle for lunch today.

2. Got a rain check for CVS $.99 dozen eggs (we don’t have an Aldi- so this is a great price). Walked from home to pick up my two dozen. Exercise and eggs for over a week!

3. A nice friend offered up some Christmas decor after a holiday party. Took some toy sized nut crackers and other little things to jazz up my sunday funny and craft paper wrapped presents.

4. Clipped organized and culled through my coupon holder. Having coupons on hand will reduce shopping expenses as I am not super brand specific.

5. Using on hand food and pantry inventory to cook and bake. Google searching “recipes with canned pumpkin or fresh cranberries” is a great way to find new things and jazz up my normal rotation of recipes. Plus less groceries to buy!


Bellen December 13, 2016 at 4:01 am

1. repaired the hem on a shirt I bought for $.50
2. hubby replaced the crumbling heel soles on a pair of NEW strappy black Natuarlizer heels I bought for $2.00 – cost of rubber sole material was $8. but enough for about 10 pair of shoes
3. made a chicken rice veggie soup for hubby out of “bones & stuff” from a rotisserie chicken he was going to toss
4. picked up 3 free 2017 calendars – one each for me, hubby and the kitchen
5. library – renewed my reciprocal sticker that enables me to have borrowing privileges at 2 other counties (libraries in FL are county wide not city wide) this also gets me Zinio and Flipster – on line sites for digital magazines so I never have to buy another one. Also Hoopla for free movies, e-books, audiobooks, etc. Each library has some same and many different offerings on those sites.


Catherine December 13, 2016 at 5:50 am

1. Reused 5 yr old ornaments on our 3 yr old tree. The boy doesn’t know they are old because he is 5 years old himself.
2. Kiddo was excited to get a toy kitchen even though he knows it’s his cousin’s old set. Cousin got an upgraded toy kitchen set but it’s a hand me down by her best friend. That best friend actually got a new toy kitchen set.


Bettypants December 13, 2016 at 5:57 am

1. I sold 6 video games on ebay, and have 10 others listed. 3 more to list and I will be done.
2. Regularly buy the Keebler mint cookies when on sale which are similar (but cheaper) to Girl Scout thin mints. Yesterday I rolled the dice on the Aldi ones and they are fantastic. Sorry Keebler.
3. Made two batches of peanut butter dog cookies to use up some leftover steak. Packed them up in cello bags tied with ribbon as gifts for coworkers and everyone was really appreciative.
4. Packing up our house to move and still posting as much as I can on the local FB boards. Kind of overwhelming to realize how much stuff we still own, but I’m still making progress. I have 3 people picking up items today.
5. My friend woke up this morning to a dead furnace. We’re supposed to see single digit temps this week and have a foot of snow already. I feel thankful I’m not furnace shopping.


Tracy December 13, 2016 at 6:23 am

1. I took my breakfast and lunch with me to work yesterday.
2. I didn’t buy a Starbucks latte yesterday even though I was tempted to do so.
3. I took the bus to work yesterday.
4. I a roast (bought on sale) and some veggies and potatoes into the crockpot yesterday a.m. so my family would have dinner while I was at my office Christmas party.
5. I drank the free soda at said office Christmas party and did not purchase any drinks from the (non-hosted) bar.
Frugal fail: I bought myself two necklaces on Etsy for a total of $60 in anticipation of my “buy nothing new” year which is starting January 1 (I’ve started now for clothes). I didn’t “need” them by any means but I am trying to go to a more minimalist wardrobe and it will be nice to have a couple of new things to dress up my basics… And in the rationalization & justification category, I tell myself it is at least good to patronize small individual businesses.


JD December 13, 2016 at 9:33 am

1. I’m eating lunch that includes a roll leftover from Thanksgiving. Not as good as when it was fresh and warm, but I eat bread from the freezer fairly often as I have to freeze all leftover breads to avoid the mold problem, so I’m used to that.
2. I’m also eating stew from the freezer — it must be the type of potatoes I used this time, but the potatoes are awful. I need to remember what kind I threw in the stew when I made it. This kind does not freeze well! Anyway, I just ate the broth, carrots, meat and onions. I refuse to say Ew and buy lunch out.
3. I got an offer to open a no-fee checking account and receive $200. Why, yes, I believe I will. I already have a savings account with this bank, so I am not jumping in blindly.
4. I’m steadily practicing free Duo-lingo for Spanish. I hope to go on a mission trip to Central America, and would like to have more skill than I currently have in Spanish.
5. I got a coupon for $1 soups off the hot bar at a food co-op we use. Since we shop there most Sundays after church, a $1 soup would be a nice lunch for little money.


Vickie December 13, 2016 at 10:37 am

LOL!! Love the NYC Santacon story, that’s funny!
1) I read that gas is going up again, due to the OPEC meetings. It figures it would happen right around the holidays. So, I stopped and bought gas for $2.09 a gallon this morning, just in case it goes up here in the next few days.
2) I ate my 88 cent frozen meal for lunch today at work. I need to go get dog food, but decided not to make an extra trip during lunch. I can do it after work and save on gas!
3) I had a message from Amazon saying I could get a $50 gift card if I applied for an Amazon prime card online. Since I planned to buy my grandson the Amazon Fire HD gaming edition for Christmas. I applied and received the gift card towards my purchase. Nice to save $50. That Amazon streaming appliance is very cool. It comes with a game controller, two games and an Alexa voice controller all for $129 which is much cheaper than other gaming devices. Since it’s a streaming device, he can watch Netflix, YouTube, etc. just like the FireStick. He finds free game downloads and now he’ll have even more. My daughter is going to take his Firestick and use it on the TV my granddaughters have. I used my Prime account, so no shipping charges. Great score for Christmas and I can pay off the $102 charge when it comes due.
4) Tomorrow is our Department holiday luncheon. FREE lunch and fun visiting with other coworkers I don’t see much during the year.
5) I had some leftover bacon in the fridge, so I made a bacon & cheese wrap for dinner last night. No cooking! 🙂


tiffany December 13, 2016 at 11:34 am

1. Have been trying to have frugal Christmas fun..last week was a night parade in a small neighboring town and this weekend it was the Heritage Museum that decorates the old houses in time period holiday had cookies and made ornaments for free.
2. Got a check from a CHASE settlement which was a nice 60.00
3. Have started going to 7-11 for coffee instead of Starbucks. Babysteps.
4. Squeezed and zested a ton of lemons from my tree
5. Not sure I have a # 5 but am trying to get useful Christmas presents for hubby and am making a year of dates from printables found online..


tonya parham December 13, 2016 at 12:56 pm

1. Haven’t eaten out since Saturday.

2. Took back a container of Sabra hummus that was recalled. I just happened to have about a tbs of it left when the recall came out. Didn’t die and got my money back! W00t!

3. Renewed library books to avoid fines.

4. Am not going anywhere today or tomorrow which will mean no money spent.

5. Have a horrible muscle knot in my back so I am using ibuprofen, heating pad. and a tennis ball to massage it rather than running to a doctor. (Who would probably want an MRI or something…)


K D December 13, 2016 at 1:57 pm

1. I have 3 butternut squash in the oven ($.99 each at Aldi) and six sweet potatoes ($.99 total from Aldi). I’ll freeze most of the squash. I’ve been eating a lot of orange vegetables but so far my skin has not turned orange.

2. I walked to the grocery store and bought 2 boxes of gluten free Chex, 2 avocados, and a Minute Muffin. The total was $2.51. I always load all coupons to my card and some were applied to this order. I’m glad to see that avocados are back to being about $1.

3. My daughter wanted home made Buffalo Chicken pizza and cupcakes for her birthday. There are leftovers to be enjoyed another day.

4. Someone asked me to bake cupcakes for a work baby shower. That’s an easy and frugal thing. They want yellow cake with chocolate frosting, I make a delicious chocolate buttercream frosting.

5. The mail this week has seen the delivery of a cash rewards check from our BOA credit card (3% back on gas purchases), and gift cards from my Discover Rewards, and Citi card rewards. Perfect for this time of year.


Julie December 13, 2016 at 2:38 pm

Mighty fine looking Santa’s you found ! I bet they wouldn’t have ended up in the cart behind Goodwill. LOL


Nancy from Mass December 14, 2016 at 4:50 am

They are some mighty fine looking Santas! I bet they had women asking to sit on their laps 😉


Nancy from Mass December 14, 2016 at 4:51 am

They are some mighty fine looking Santas!


Ethel December 14, 2016 at 7:23 am

1. Used a coupon code to get %50 off prints at Walgreens.
2. Grocery shopped yesterday, and have eaten at home this whole week, except for one meal (I know it’s only Wednesday, but for me, this is a huge deal).
3. Bought a Christmas tree ($45) but decorated it (and the rest of our house) with things we already had.
4. Finished wrapping my parents’ gifts-used all second-hand paper, ribbons, boxes, etc…that I found at the Goodwill outlet. And you can’t even tell!
5. Drinking free coffee at work, eating leftovers from home for lunch.
6. Am back to carpooling with a coworker 2 days per week…saves me a little on gas.
7. Found 3 cents at the Goodwill outlet. Did not buy large white lights for my tree, even though they worked and would have been under a dollar. I had enough lights at home.


Paige December 14, 2016 at 10:23 am

1. Working on a homemade no cost Christmas tree skirt. It’s out first year to put up a tree in eight years plus a move so we have to buy all new stuff including a tree. Got a tree at Dollar General because all the trees people had for sale online around me was too expensive. It looks puny but it was $20. set a budget to buy ornaments and lights but TOTALLY forgot a tree skirt. I had a show box full of quilt squares I was buying on a quilt store website when the deal of the day was good, so I went online and found a free and easy pattern to make one. Bought the batting with an online coupon and I’m using a pillow case we haven’t used EVER as the backing. I brought the pillow case to work with me and ripped all the seams open.
2. I’ve been eating pizza pockets from a box my husband got for work lunch all week and thankfully the city we work for has also been sending lunch or supper and treats our way all week. Plus I’m steeping my own tea from tea bags I keep in my locker so I don’t buy soft drinks at work. JUST NEED CAFFEINE!!!
3. Keeping mostly all my Christmas gift buys local this season.
4. Taking my son off my cellphone bill this week. He lives with his dad and I decided to stop being the money pit and let my ex-husband share some of the expenses. He’ll be putting him on his account when he earns his phone back that he lost due to bad grades. So that’s $100 off my bill!
5. Starting to homeschool my youngest when school starts back up after Christmas break, so I’m taking a trip to Houston with a fellow homeschooling mom who’s been doing this for a while to a homeschool supply store next week. I should be able to find the rest of what I need discounted…AND a girl that goes to my church who teaches in public school said she would take me to the local free teacher’s supply shop next time it opens to see if there’s anything I need.
Merry Christmas everyone! and Happy New Year!


Paige December 14, 2016 at 10:53 am

I’ve been trying to cut down on how much disposable dinnerware I use. I cut it out completely at home and now at work. I use a dinner plate someone left in the cabinet at work, I just wash it everytime. And I asked the fire department if I could keep a fork and spoon in my locker till I could get to Goodwill and get some to keep there. I got a free bowl from my grocery store through a promotion they’re having till February. I keep that in my locker too. Plus our safety awards the past couple years have been Yeti cups, so I keep one in my locker for use too.


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