Five Frugal Things

by Katy on December 27, 2016 · 70 comments

  1. My husband brought home some nice roasted turkey that was leftover from a work event. We already had potatoes, so I whipped up a quick batch of mashed potatoes and gravy. Add in a 99¢ packet of frozen peas and the cranberry sauce still leftover from Thanksgiving and we now have a feast for tonight’s dinner without much expense or effort.
  2. I’ve been better about goofing around on Swagbucks whenever I’m watching TV. My goal is to earn three $25 Paypal gift cards per month, and although I don’t always meet this goal, it’s still free money. And since I can simply transfer the money into my credit union account, my Swagbuck points can be used for anything . . . including college tuition! (Yes, I know. I’m single minded and boring. Let me be your cautionary tale to start saving early!)
  3. I renewed my Craiglist listings, as well as started a new one for a girl’s bike that I bought and then somehow shoved into the basement and forgot about. I’m asking $75 for a $350 Specialized brand bike, so hopefully it’ll sell quickly. Although my eBay listings are generating almost zero interest, my sister’s are, so I’m living vicariously through her.
  4. I was able to put together a meal for eight for $3 last night. This was because I had free leftover ham, (from my “turkey or ham” Christmas bonus every year) which anchored a large pot of white bean rosemary soup. I then baked a large loaf of bread, which probably set me back around 50¢. Delicious doesn’t have to be expensive.
  5. I’ve been saving packing supplies to use for eBay sales, I turned in another Clark Howard article, I walked to the grocery store and only bought what was on my list (milk and flour) and I didn’t buy a Lear Jet.

Now your turn. What frugal things have you been up to?

Katy Wolk-Stanley

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

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{ 70 comments… read them below or add one }

MW December 27, 2016 at 1:35 pm

1- Scored a replacement winter coat at Goodwill. My old one was wearing out in spots. . .
2- Dug through some boxes and found two nice looking gloves that mostly match to use with my new work jacket.
3- Got a load of hand-me-downs from a co-worker, my boys now have nice jeans in the next size up squirreled away.
4- Managed to talk my self down from buying unwanted crap for my Dad and his wife for Christmas.
5- Thawing out a big turkey bought on sale last month for a New Years dinner. The leftovers should keep us going for protein for a week or two (frozen in small batches, of course).


Isabelle December 27, 2016 at 1:51 pm

* Talked myself out of buying a treadmill for home. I mean, I do have all that I need to workout (elliptical, dvds, step, weights, etc), so…
* Decided to get back into photography (as a hobby). But I don’t have a camera. So I decided to splurge on a new one (don’t trust used ones), but to get an older model on sale. So I’m getting a good dslr Canon camera with 2 lenses for 430$. And I got Groupons for 10 hours of photography courses from a professional photographer for only 80$ (instead of 200$). I’m so excited to get back into it!
* Date night with hubby using a gift card tonight. As we received 100$, we are probably good for 2 outings (it’s a steak house so we’ll see). Free babysitting from grandma
* Made about 1500$ more than I was “requiring” for 2016. I work as a casual (on-call) so I manage my schedule accordingly to a certain amount I want to earn each year.
* Got some stuff at Boxing day but nothing stupid or just-for-the-fun-of-spending. I used to love shopping on Boxing day but I don’t anymore.

Have a great frugal day!


Kate December 27, 2016 at 2:30 pm

There are so very many treadmills sitting unused that, when I decided I needed one, I just started mentioning my search to all my friends. Eventually, after saying, “I just need to find ONE person with a treadmill cluttering up their basement!” for the umpteenth time, a fellow frugal friend said she knew just the people – her in-laws! There were a couple moments of true terror getting it out of their basement but it was worth it. I’ve had it over two years now and have only had to buy a new safety shut-off key for it – the original owner was using a chisel because he’d gotten the treadmill from another friend and lost the key. He actually offered up the chisel but I graciously declined. 🙂


Lazyretirementgirl December 27, 2016 at 6:31 pm

Isabelle, coursera and edx both offer photography courses free online. Also, check out creative live which has excellent free options, but the freebies are on their schedule, not yours.


Isabelle December 29, 2016 at 9:47 am



Tabitha December 30, 2016 at 9:52 am

Hey Isabelle, just wanted to share with you that I signed up for a FREE photography course at SHAW ACADEMY. The course price was listedas $395… being a complete photography newbie…I didn’t want to spend that kind of bread. If you head over to their site, you may be able to score a free course as well. It’s


LisaC December 27, 2016 at 2:10 pm

I have a bad cold/flusomething and feel miserable, but still saved money:
1. Didn’t go anywhere.
2. Binged watched on Hulu. Undercover Boss makes me cry every time.
3. Drank broth with Siracha the first day. Was hungry today and started to ask DH to go buy some cans of chicken noodle soup, but found a single frozen “jerked marinade” chicken breast in the freezer and made my own with what I had: carrots, pasta, lots of garlic, tumeric and siracha. Spices make my sinuses feel better.
4. DH happily binged watched his own movies in another room, lots of shooting noises came from that direction, but I didn’t have to watch it.
5. DH ate leftover quiche for dinner. I drank a lot of herb tea throughout the day from my several boxes in the pantry.
Not the way I wanted to spend my week off, but it gave me time to rest.


WilliamB December 27, 2016 at 2:52 pm

Katy – do you find you have luck selling big items right after Christmas? As you may have seen on your last post, I failed in listing a few big things to sale, and figured I’d have to wait because right after Christmas wasn’t the right time. I’m sure you know better because you have more experience; do you know differently?


Katy December 27, 2016 at 3:15 pm

I don’t remember that I’ve tried to sell a big item after Christmas in the past, but high end bikes always sell well in Portland, so I know I won’t get stuck with the bike.


Betty Winslow December 27, 2016 at 2:58 pm

1. Bought several really large Xmas gift bags and some medium ones that could be used for winter birthdays (we have 2) for 50 cents each.
2. Went to the grocery store for distilled water and wandered through the new section, trying free samples. Lunch! Also found two blinking lights necklaces for $1.50 each, for next year. (They even have extra batteries!!)
3. Stopped at library and got some reading material for the next few days.
4. Tried to exchange some tea I didn’t like that I got for Xmas, but no receipt, so instead it will go in the food pantry bag for my next donation trip.
5. Also tried to return a wireless mouse I got that I don’t need, but no luck. I think I’ll try to sell it on FB.


Michelle December 27, 2016 at 3:14 pm

1.). My daughter asked for a larger bed a few months ago. A friend on fb offered a free queen bed to anyone. My fiancé and I picked it up. We did have to buy a bed frame for $60 but hey, cheaper option than brand new bed.
2.). My best friend and I met for free coffee at a Starbucks coffee party. She brought cookies from home. We are and drank at the coffee shop while enjoying each other’s company.
3.). I brought in food from home to eat at work for lunch. It’s so easy to go to the cafeteria and swipe my badge, but I resisted by being prepared.
4.) I’m listening to the minimalist’s podcast. I’m learning about simplifying my life. It’s so therapeutic, and I find that by being more intentional, the temptation to buy junk is no longer becoming a temptation…
5.) I’m feeling happier with less. It’s a good feeling.


Marie December 27, 2016 at 3:27 pm

Great Work Katy

Joined a FB group SS Monthly Challenges to stay in the frugal zone.

Tidied my Walk In Robe…i find being tidy goes a long way too being frugal.Sc

January is school holidays month so we generally chill and eat down remaining xmas stock..freezer and pantry.

Re-read frugal publications and books…including borrowing such from the library.

Plan events for 2017 including low cost or no cost events for the kidsJan entertainment.

Making full use of local pool…we have a family pass.

Painfully sharing one car when two is necessary but can’t bring myself to do.

Trying to do as many jobs as possible around the house myself.


Chanda December 27, 2016 at 3:37 pm

My five frugal things:

1. I haven’t gone anywhere all week.

2. Living on leftovers from Christmas dinner until they are gone.

3. Other people brought about a third of our Christmas dinner and left it with us, so that’s food we didn’t have to pay for.

4. Using up the teas that I have been keeping stored for the past couple of years, in order to use them and to help declutter cupboard space.

5. Watching old movies and shows on the roku with my husband instead of renting them through cable.

I had a question about Swagbucks. What do you do to earn the most points?


Jodi December 28, 2016 at 1:58 pm

The gold surveys (look for them under the Answer tab) give the most points. There are often surveys that can be completed in 5 to 15 minutes worth 50-100 SB.


Laura December 27, 2016 at 3:37 pm

I somehow missed yesterday’s frugal things post, some of the things I’ve done the last few days.

I did go to the after Christmas sales but only bought what I needed – cards for next year and tissue paper that was labeled holiday but is neutral enough to be used in gift bags for any gift giving occasion.

Saved all gift bags from Christmas to use again next year. Like many posters from yesterday, I reuse them until they fall apart.

Ate nothing but leftovers yesterday.

Took my young son to the free indoor play area in the mall to run off some energy, and only went to the play area. No shopping.


Mrs. Picky Pincher December 27, 2016 at 3:50 pm

This week:

1. Today I cooked spaghetti for dinner using only leftovers in our pantry. As a bonus I seasoned the spaghetti with rosemary that grows in our front yard.

2. We ate Christmas dinner leftovers yesterday for lunch. We had more leftover, which we’ll freeze for later.

3. We froze the bone and trimmings from the Christmas ham. I’ll use it sometime to make a tasty soup or stock.

4. I hemmed some pajama pants Mr. Picky Pincher got for Christmas.

5. I had leftovers for lunch today, even though I really didn’t want them. Waste not!


Juhli December 27, 2016 at 3:50 pm

You are inspirational. We got bad news today that the house sales prices in our neighborhood dropped and since our house is going on the market in late Feb we are having Uber Frugal January.


Katy December 27, 2016 at 6:57 pm

Sorry to hear that. We are spoiled here in Portland as out house prices just keep going up and up!


anne December 27, 2016 at 4:22 pm

I think your best sentence is “Delicious doesn’t have to be expensive”. It has taken me a long long time to realize I don’t have to break the bank to have a really nice time entertaining. Good food, company, and conversation is what is important.


Marie December 27, 2016 at 4:32 pm

ooh, curious how do you earn swagbucks from watchibg t.v. we stream!


Katy December 27, 2016 at 6:56 pm

No, I’m just doing Swagbucks on my laptop while watching a separate TV.


Laura December 27, 2016 at 5:48 pm

1. This was a little bit of a bust, but my husband and I planned to go to a movie this evening for a date. We don’t have a discount theater but our local Cinemark discounts tickets on Tuesdays to under $5 per person, which is a price I’m willing to pay. However, when we got there the theater was crazy packed — lines everywhere, and even snaking around inside. We don’t have kids and made the fatal mistake of forgetting that it’s Christmas vacation, thus not a school night. So we turned around and came home. We wasted a little money on gas, but ended up making a pot of fancy tea and playing Boggle for a satisfying date night at home. Also, I know now about the Tuesday prices for future dates.
2. Yesterday we ventured out not for post-holiday shopping but to return our cable modem; we’d been renting a really old model from Comcast that they no longer support but wouldn’t replace since it was ostensibly still working (it was not working consistently…). We researched a newer option and we should save hundreds of dollars over the life of the modem based on the length of time we had the previous model. Feel a little dumb for waiting so long to do this, but at least we’ll see savings soon!
3. I made a really yummy meal from the pantry and the last bits of some veggies hanging out in the fridge — capellini pomodoro with sauteed green beans & zucchini on the side. The green beans were leftover from Christmas dinner. For the pasta, I use canned tomatoes and stir in a little pesto instead of shelling out for fresh basil. It’s so pantry friendly and also cheap. The whole meal was at most $4, probably closer to $3.
4. I froze some egg yolks leftover from making macaroons. I’m looking forward to making creme anglaise sometime soon, but don’t need that right now!
5. I ordered heel caps and a few other supplies to spruce up several pairs of shoes. This required a bit of $$ outlay up front but should help me refurbish several pairs of nice heels that are in otherwise good shape.


LisaC December 28, 2016 at 2:04 pm

How do you freeze egg yolks?


Kim December 27, 2016 at 6:32 pm

1. I listed and sold (2) textbooks. I packaged them using cardboard and scraps I had.
2. I worked a shift at a yoga studio and in return I got vouchers for (2) classes.
3. I returned two things I bought, but realized I did not need.
4. I posted a few items on my neighborhood’s Buy Nothing page.
5. I washed out (3) ziplock bags to reuse.


Chris December 27, 2016 at 6:49 pm

1. Stayed home 2/26 – don’t need any 1/2 off xmas stuff.
2. Had bought a 1.99/lb spiral cut ham that I wanted to serve family but no one was that interested – made it yesterday and we have a TON leftover for future meals.
3. Went to a thrift store today that had 75% off Christmas and bought two great vintage pieces to put in the 2017 etsy shop.
4. Only thrifted pieces for perfect grandson as he moves to a new size – found an adidas soccer shirt for $1.60 – both his parents play soccer so they will love it!
5. Our son-in-law (of 4 months) announced that our daughter paid off her last credit card bill and he has only a few payments to go on his car – ready to start stockpiling $$ for a down payment. Love that dude!!


Mariana December 27, 2016 at 6:56 pm

Yay for leftovers!
We had a sponsored lunch at work today. One of our clients sent $450 worth of Italian. Too bad it gets soggy so quickly. I grabbed a Pugh for dinner and put away for tomorrow’s lunch as well. 🙂


Mariana December 27, 2016 at 6:58 pm

Ouch. Spelling. It sure how ‘enough’ turned into ‘a pugh’. Sorry.


Roberta December 27, 2016 at 6:56 pm

1. Washed laundry, and hung it out to dry. Everything but the sheets dried on the line (sheets are half dry, but that doesn’t work for me) so I will be putting the sheets in just before I go to bed. I will put fresh, warm sheets on the bed and go to bed right after!
2. Took five boxes of clutter to Goodwill today. Hopefully it will make someone else happy!
3. My truck wouldn’t start, but it turned out to be the security chip. The tow truck driver figured it out, but we have AAA so there was no charge and we didn’t have to pay for a repair!
4. Cleaned out the garage today and parked both cars in there! I had been using it as my Christmas workshop but I no longer need that excuse.
5. Spent the afternoon teaching my daughter how to clean her room. Go through each area, get rid of the things you don’t want/need, sweep, put things back. We only finished half but her room is noticeably better. I took a laundry basket of clutter out of her room and distributed it appropriately (trash, donate, elsewhere) to make that part easy for her. It was good time together, and she’s so happy about her clean room!


Mand01 December 27, 2016 at 7:40 pm

1. My youngest daughter has outgrown her wardrobe. We went to the Savers 50% off sale and spent $40 for $80 of pre-loved clothes.
2. We also went to the post Christmas sales and got underwear and PJs (items I won’t buy used) for her for half price. While there I found Christmas wrap and tags for 75% off, to put aside for next year. I spent less than $100 and have almost replenished her wardrobe.
3. Came home to leftover pizza from the pizza for lunch.
4. Going to work on my freelance side gig this afternoon.
5. While I’m working my husband will make turkey and vegetable soup for dinner.


Mand01 December 27, 2016 at 7:41 pm

From the freezer not from the pizza. D’oh


Bethanne December 27, 2016 at 9:31 pm

1. DD and I split a bowl lunch at Panda Express to tide us over to dinner.

2. Got in almost 30 points on Swagbucks tonight from9:30 till 11 watching videos.

3. Parents treated DD and me to Jets pizza dinner. Jets messed up our order so got additional free and took some home.

4. Watched a movie on Netflix instead of renting.

5. Received a $10 certificate to use at the grocery store for using their credit card , I always pay it off each month so figure I actually gain from using it.



Bee December 28, 2016 at 5:03 am

1) I needed room in the freezer for incoming leftovers. I took out two chicken carcasses, a bag of veggie scraps, noodles, and a container of chicken broth. I put it all in the crock pot (except the noodles) before I went to bed. We will have a nice pot of chicken noodle soup for lunch today.
2) I made a list of financial items that needed my attention after the first of the year. These are small things that may save some $$$$$.
3) I have decided that our Christmas traditions are too much work for me. I host a huge Christmas Eve dinner for family, and I am trying to figure out how to make things easier without upsetting anyone. I have started with decorating. I have several things that I will sell in next October. I will photograph them now while they are displayed. I am sure that I can make my home look festitive without so much stuff. Simplify!
4) We have lots of extended family in town for the holidays. They are busy with many activities. As much as I love them, I have not said yes to everything. It can be very expensive and exhausting to go everywhere and do everything.
5) I did go to the movies yesterday with loved ones. We went to the twilight show which is generally less expensive than other showings. I popped my water bottle and hubby’s in my purse. We shared a medium popcorn. It was a great treat. We saw “Rogue One” in 3-D. This is something that we couldn’t have enjoyed at home.


cathy December 28, 2016 at 4:59 pm

Bee, we used to host a Christmas Eve dinner for friends and family. Always enjoyed it, but it was stressful, even if others brought some of the food. One year we changed the plan and asked everyone to bring either an appetizer or dessert. The variety was great, there was a ton of food, everyone got full, and no one missed the more traditional dinner. Anyway, just an option if you’re looking to simplify in other ways.


Bee December 28, 2016 at 5:17 pm

Thank you for the idea. I love hearing what has worked for others. I am searching for a solution that does not require days of prep and clean up. This definitely fits the bill! 🙂


Kim December 29, 2016 at 8:47 am

Bee, one year for Thanksgiving we invited my sister and her boyfriend at the time. Such a nice guy, but I digress. Since it was only going to be four of us, I didn’t want to make a traditional Turkey Day feast. So I decided to have whole Maine lobsters, broccoli with fresh made cheese sauce and baked potatoes. It was a hit and there was very little to cleanup! I figured lobster was probably on the menu all those years ago in Massachusetts!


JD December 29, 2016 at 8:46 am

I agree with Cathy — I’ve been asking my two grown kids to contribute something, just one dish apiece, and I’ve simplified the menu incredibly. We have a meat, two veggies, a bread and dessert for about 10 people. Since we just came off of massive food overload at Thanksgiving, we don’t need a massive meal for Christmas.
And I have scaled back my decorating a great deal as well. A very few treasured items and a decorated tree are all I do these days. I put up wreaths and a couple of strands of lights outside, and I’m done.


Val in MN December 28, 2016 at 6:14 am

1. Stayed home and completely purged and cleaned the laundry room. For some reason this had become unmanageable. Now it is clean, organized, and easier to move around. Also plowed through the bathroom storage closet and it’s much better. 🙂
2. Made up several bags to take to Goodwill to be repurposed. My DH said he was just going to throw out his old uniforms until I replied “No – they can go to Goodwill for Halloween costumes!!”
3. Made dinner out of this-n-that items from fridge and freezer so nothing gets thrown out.
4. Stayed away from the post holiday sales – hard but I did it.
5. Watched a documentary on Netflix – no renting.


susanna d December 28, 2016 at 6:22 am

1. Entered my walking steps and other exercise into my Walgreen’s Balance Rewards healthy choices. It doesn’t earn me a lot of rewards points – there’s a limit of 1000 points per month that can be earned from walking or running entries. But along with exercise entries, I earn around $15 worth of rewards points a year. It takes very little time to track, so it’s definitely worth it.
2. The latest Balance Rewards entry put me just over the amount needed to have $50 on my card. I’ll be planning out my shopping spree shortly – there are quite a few things I need that are on sale this week, so I’ll be trying to maximize the value as best I can.
3. Planned the New Years Eve menu – just a few friends stopping in, so it’s nothing huge. I’ll add in fresh fruit and veggies, but otherwise I have everything I need for the foods in the fridge or freezer – purchased at rock bottom prices over the past couple of months.
4. Thawed a bunch of ground beef – buying half sides of beef means there’s always hamburger meat to use for assorted meals. Made four meat loaves (one for this week, the rest for the freezer) and a double batch of meatballs. If I’m running the oven, I try to bake several things at a time. The oven’s in use anyway, why not get as much bang for my energy buck as possible?
5. Found 97 cents in change over the past week. This was while we were out of town visiting family for the holidays. I rarely find money up here, but the city has always been very helpful for adding to my “found on the ground” money challenge totals.


Jill A December 28, 2016 at 7:56 am

1. Eating up leftovers from Christmas breakfast and dinner. I haven’t had to go to the grocery store at all.
2. My Roku stopped working. My husband and I called the tech support and rebooted it. Kind of a pain but at least we didn’t have to buy a new one.
3. Husband and I watched movies on Netflix last night instead of going out on a date, saved a few dollars and we will still go out another night.
4. Removing more burned out lights on my pre-lit tree. I’ll pick up another set of lights to replace them, and hopefully put it back together for next year.
5. My brother helped me to fix an old laptop. I’m not very tech savvy, but it’s a laptop that we like and didn’t want to throw out. He reset it to it’s factory settings or whatever. It’s still a little slow, so I’ll have him see what else he can do.


Leslie December 28, 2016 at 9:06 am

1. Made and froze chicken broth from the leftover carcasses from Christmas Day. Froze the extra meat.
2. Making bean soup from the ham bone from the Christmas Eve Ham. Froze the rest of the leftover ham.
3. Went shopping the day after Christmas. Managed to just buy some super discounted lights and mixed nuts (lights for next year, nuts for now) instead of all the “super cute” stuff that was SUCH a bargain (ha)!
4. Working from home today with the thermostat set to our “away” temp. While its a bit chilly, I’ve dressed in comfy layers and my warmest slippers to ward off the chill.
5. Sorted and organized used ribbon, boxes and gift bags for reuse next year.


A. Marie December 28, 2016 at 12:33 pm

(1) DH and I finished the last of the Xmas Eve lamb for lunch today. (As I may have mentioned previously, this is a Two Fat Ladies recipe that we and Bestest Neighbors are very fond of. RIP Jennifer and Clarissa, and thanks for finally getting me into the kitchen.)

(2) The lamb, incidentally, was bought Reduced for Quick Sale after last Easter and stored in the freezer to await Xmas Eve.

(3) I needed to have some copies for work made at Staples on 12/26, so I took the opportunity to run other errands in the area during the wait: bottle/can return, stop at a thrift store (where I cashed in some rewards program points), and a haircut.

(4) High winds this week have brought down several large tree limbs in the ‘hood. More lumberjacking work for DH, more fuel for our wood-burning insert.

(5) Have avoided most real-world post-Xmas sale temptations (due as much to lack of time as to willpower, but whatever works is good). Also just hung up on a telemarketer who was trying to sell me a Disney World resort package. (She tried to tell me I’d stayed there in the past. As if!!)


Mand01 December 28, 2016 at 4:50 pm

Clarissa wrote one of the best books about food I have ever read: A History of English Cooking. Could not put it down.


Cindy in the South December 28, 2016 at 12:51 pm

1. I went to the laundromat. It is $2.00 to wash clothes once a week, and I figure that is cheaper for me, since I have a small house and would have to run lines and do electric for outlet, and buy a washer, and use my water and electricity. I am not feeling it. 2. I went to the Salvation Armny thrift store, while the laundry was churning. I bought two short sleeves Le Suits for summer. One of the courthouses I work in is old, and has no air conditioning, upstairs in the courtroom, full of people, in the deep South. It is absolutely sweltering in the summer. The short sleeves skirt suits will be very welcoming. They were $3.00 a piece!!! I also bought a pair of pants for $3.00. 3. Yesterday, I went to a thrift store while visiting my sons, and saw a purse I liked. I was irritated it had this gold thing emblazoned on it with a designer name (I do not like stuff that has names in large letters, but liked the purse), but did not have my glasses on, did not look closely, and figured, oh well, I did not care, I ask the cashier the pruce, since it had no tag. She shrugged, did not look at the name either and said $1.99. I was real happy. I got home, put my glasses on, and that name was Louis Vutton, or however you spell it.I am not at home, so I cannot remember how to spell it exactly. Anyhoo, I have no idea if it is real or not. But I like the purse, so I will use it when my Liz Claiborne thrift purchased purse wears out. I also purchased at the thrift store a very nice leather jacket for $18, I liked it, but felt like that was high. I purchased a Maggy London dress I adored for $6.99. I also felt like that was high but liked it. I purchased for $2.00 a shirt for work also. My wardrobe only needs a pair of jeans to be set for the year. 3. I want to the dentist to check out a cap that fall out. He did not charge me for recheck. 4. I am still eating in Christmas cornbread dressing, and other foods from the hokidays. 5. My Focus is under warranty, the hood unmatched and flew up, cutting the sides of the metal. I have made an appointment, while under warranty, to get it looked at. The local Ford place usually gives me grief, so I called Ford headauarters, they got the local place on the phone. After headquarters for off the line, she changed her tune (at local place) and was a bit snitty, but I think she understood I would call headquarters back, if needed. I was polite, but direct


Cindy in the South December 28, 2016 at 12:54 pm

Excuse typos, some are because of auto correct, and some are bc I am lazy today….lol


LisaC December 28, 2016 at 2:01 pm

I once bought a LV purse at GW for 4 dollars. I went home, researched the authenticity marks, listed it with all of the photos of authenticity marks. In the listing I said I am not a purse expert, and wasn’t sure where it came from originally, but to refer to the photos and decide for yourself if it is authentic. That covered me, and was honest for the buyers. I got 650 dollars for it! I think it was a second.


Cindy in the South December 28, 2016 at 3:56 pm

Wow…..may be I need to do some research instead of just using it!


John December 28, 2016 at 3:45 pm

That’s a nice kids bike! The single speed coaster brake versions do list for quite a bit less than the multi-speed $350 Hotrock… closer to $250.

Still a good deal at $75 if it doesn’t need a tune up…


Katy December 28, 2016 at 6:48 pm

Thanks, I hadn’t realized there was a difference.


Kymm December 28, 2016 at 4:38 pm

I’m still working on Christmas leftovers for meals, so no more money has been spent since I bought food on Thursday last week. I haven’t spent a dime other than to fill up my gas tank, and I’m feeling pretty good about that.

I use Swagbucks as well and am curious as to what your “goofing around” on there entails. An extra 50 to 75 dollars a month would be pretty welcome around here.


Kymm December 28, 2016 at 4:41 pm

ETA: I haven’t spent a dime since last Thursday.


Jen A December 28, 2016 at 6:11 pm

1. Harvested broccoli, chard and a lemon from the garden for Christmas Eve dinner.
2. Deposited a gift check from my generous uncle; it will go straight into an investment account
3. Made $10 selling a vintage children’s book
4. We have been blessed by a couple of decent rainstorms this month so we’ve had the sprinklers off for over two weeks. That should do good things for our water bill.
5. Today was warm and sunny so line-dryed a couple of loads of laundry.


Kim December 28, 2016 at 8:48 pm

1. Found 28¢, a Canadian dime and a Chuckie Cheese token in a Coinstar machine when I was doing a mystery shop at a grocery store.
2. Got my delivery order from Staples today. I had a bonus $5 coupon they sent me that expired on 12/24. Didn’t want to go out so I combined it with an $8 Reward and ordered two 24 packs of Charmin that were on special for $3.18 oop. Can always use tp!
3. Picked up some coupons from a fellow Freecycler.
4. I’ve sold 5 items on Amazon in the past day.
5. I’m enjoying having both of my sons home from school for Winter break. DS#2 goes back to Tennessee in 9 days. 535 miles is really far away!


jennifer December 29, 2016 at 10:19 am

1. When we were at Chuckie Cheese last month for my daughter’s birthday I found 2 gold dollar coins on the floor. They look very similar in size and color to the Chuckie Cheese tokens! I’m not promoting Chuckie Cheese in any way, I hate the place.


Kim December 29, 2016 at 4:36 pm

Jennifer, that’s great about the gold dollars! That’s what the tooth fairy gave out here. The neighbor across the street gave $20 per tooth! I told my boys the gold dollars were special. I give the CC tokens to a little girl at church who likes to go there for her daddy and daughter dates. I tell her daddy, who is a friend of ours, that he is truly special because the place makes me crazy. LOL!


tonya parham December 28, 2016 at 9:04 pm

1. Paid bills and made budget for now through end of February. Being an adjunct, I don’t get paid in January which makes Feb a lot of fun. I’m looking at the challenge is one to eat down the pantry and actually SAVE some of the money I put aside for food.

2. We went to the new IKEA and got bookshelves. I have looked for literally YEARS for some decent shelves for my books and just can’t find any used. I mean, I have suffered with cheap Wal-Mart shelves for 20 years and recently started using wooden crates. So while I didn’t WANT to buy anything new, I felt like the stuff from IKEA was durable, affordable, and looked really good. Having spent well over a decade looking for decent shelves, I just wasn’t willing to continue living with my books in boxes in my closets. I’m happy to keep these shelves for decades. Spent all day yesterday putting them together and arranging my kitchen and living room.

3. Decided today to get rid of cable. $70 a month saved. We watch too much tv and have Netflix and Hulu….add to that the library and that’s plenty. (Plus we have an antenna and where we moved we should get ABC, CBS, PBS, and NBC which is all I really need.)

4. Got our first bill where we are using the heat. GOOD GOD– we had the temp set at 64 and spent $170 on gas! So, the heat has come down at night to 58 and the “yoga room” is now closed off. It had AC to it for the summer and our bills were not bad. This was bad. We also are closing all the blinds at dark to keep heat from escaping through the window panes. I also bought a small heater for whatever room we will be in. I’ve wanted one for a while and while it’s not frugal and I have always been told electric is higher than gas, that just doesn’t seem to be my experience here in TN. Maybe that’s because we have TVA– I don’t know.

5. Didn’t leave the house today so I spent nothing out shopping. Am soaking beans tonight to cook in slow cooker tomorrow.


tonya parham December 28, 2016 at 9:07 pm

6. Got my student loans consolidated and lowered my payment to about 1/3 of what I was paying. Will use that savings to pay on credit cards.

7. Earned a Swagbucks gift card for Amazon and ordered my toilet paper (it’s so much cheaper off Amazon than any store here! and with that gift card, it’s free!).


tia December 28, 2016 at 9:47 pm

1. Everyday I’ve been enjoying soups I made from rotisserie chicken and stashed in the freezer.
2. Painted the cabinets instead of replacing them. They look nice.
3. Sold some furniture that I never use anymore. $$
4. Donated some stuff to Goodwill and cleared some clutter and didn’t buy anything there to bring home.
5. I didn’t pay 4 thousand dollars to have tea with Ivanka and I didn’t spend a million dollars to shoot lions with Eric.


Carrie January 6, 2017 at 1:42 pm

Hahahaha!! You totally win Tia!! Love your #5!


Amanda December 28, 2016 at 11:59 pm

1. I went to the grocery store on Monday to pick up things for a dinner I was hosting on Tuesday. I rarely make impulse buys, but my kids requested oranges and strawberries. I also bought myself a Pepsi. I’ve cut way back on my Pepsi consumption, so these impulse buys (andvthe money I’ve spent in general this month on sodas) could have been much worse.

2. We’re spending the week at our second home. For some reason the towels always get funky smelling here. I concidered throwing a bunch away, but I decided to boil them to kill any yuck, and it seems to have freshened them up.

3. The wrapping paper we used for gifts was absolutely beautiful paper produced by a printer we work with as a holiday promotional item. I don’t think I’ve bought wrapping supplies in ten years.

4. I think I resolved a billing issue between our dentist and our insurance. I hate it when things like that linger out there.

5. My husband has worn out his current jeans. [How do we get holes in the crotch so quickly?!] He wanted to buy new a couple weeks ago, but I convinced him that he could muddle through two weeks until Christmas. Low and behold Levi’s is having a sale this week. So he is getting a few things, 30% off. I am getting nothing as I am doing compressive exams this semester, which pretty much involves locking myself in my house and seeing no one for three months. During this time I am also planning to finish loosing the last of my baby weight. When I get back in my pre-baby clothes it will be like I have a whole new free wardrobe!


Jennifer December 29, 2016 at 6:05 am

Amanda, my husband used to always get holes in the crotch of his pants after he wore them a short time. He usually wears Levi’s so they aren’t cheap. We figured out that he squats down on one leg a lot at work stressing that particular area so we had to go up a pants size to allow for more “give” in the crotch area and it hasn’t happened since. He wasn’t too excited about going up a size but turns out he found them to be much more comfortable, HTH!


rebecca December 29, 2016 at 7:06 am

1. It’s been windy so lots of branches down in my neighborhood. I collected a bunch for kindling.
2. Reading a lot of library books.
3. I have been spending way too much on food the past week or so with take out and restaurants. I need to get back to home cooking.
4. I have not gone to any sales so no buying things I don’t need except for a couple of books from amazon that I used credits so no$$ spent.
5. Found a new cooking show I really like-it’s called Anna and Kristina’s Grocery Bag. It’s on ionlife and Canadian. I love it.


JD December 29, 2016 at 9:10 am

1. Signed up for the new checking account and will earn $200 in 3 months for having signed up.
2. I got my $60 contact lens rebate gift card in the mail — AFTER Christmas, sigh — but I can still use it. The hard part is deciding where I want to use it.
3. We switched auto insurance and will save $144 a year. Another plus is that our new insurer will be sending us a gas card to use at any Marathon to get 3 cents off per gallon, and they offer a good car seat for only $25 and a good booster seat for $15, no shipping costs. I have two grandkids who use car seats and one of them needs a new one right now. Good timing!
4. I batched errands before going back to work this week and caught several sales and coupons before they expired. I had 20% off at a bird feed store, $5 off at a grocery store, and many of the grocery store big Christmas sales ended on the day I shopped, so I got to them just in time.
5. I paid my property taxes early and while I was at it filed a dispute on my home’s physical description — they are claiming I have more rooms and bathrooms than my house actually has. I don’t know that it will change my taxes, but the imaginary extra bathroom might be a problem for permits down the road, so that needs to be correct.


Vickey January 1, 2017 at 9:46 am

JD, we disputed our property tax assessment, and got it dropped significantly. Even tho’ we had to pay for a professional appraisal to support our claim, we got that back in saving the first year. Good luck with your corrections.


Ruby December 29, 2016 at 9:58 am

1. Realized that I was going to run out of contact lenses (daily disposables) before it was time for my next eye appointment, thus would have to ask for an extension on the prescription and buy more unless I chose to wear my glasses to work one day a week. Glasses it is!
2. Did not buy curtain rods for a home decor project. We had enough in our stash of odds and ends that I could put them together and spray-paint to look nice.
3. Been looking for an anti-fatigue kitchen runner because our pretty slate tile floor is murder on my feet. Decided to buy three $2.99 black rubber doormats at a liquidation store to start, since our new puppy likes to chew the corners off mats. If she chews on these, I can still use them outside by the back door.
4. Discovered that an old pair of wool and suede Travelwool clogs machine-washed just fine on delicate/cold. I’m letting them air dry in the laundry room. They’d become so grimy over the years that I was considering throwing them away, and now they look practically new.
5. Going to the trouble of feeding our cats separately, so that the tubby one gets only the expensive diet kitty kibble, while the one who doesn’t need to lose weight gets his regular food.


Susie's Daughter December 29, 2016 at 11:20 am

1) Entered 10 non winning lottery tickets from Christmas into the “2nd Chance” drawing today. My brother had two winners and my wife had one, but the rest are all in the system now. Someone has to win the leftover prizes – why not us?

2) Froze the extra OJ my brother left after Christmas and saved the yummy leftover ice cream they left as well. Hoping for a very minimal shopping month in January.

3) Cleaned our rental unit myself in prep for ski season renters beginning today. Sometimes it is more of a chore than others, but it saves us about $100 each rental to do it myself. I try to remind myself of this!

4) Returned chocolate milk yesterday that had gone bad after only 4 days with a sell by date of 12/30. Used the money to buy fresh milk.

5) So far have avoided buying anything in the after Christmas sales. I keep reminding myself how much (fill in the blank) we already have. So far so good.


LisaC December 29, 2016 at 2:43 pm

#5 yes! I keep telling myself that too. In fact, I keep giving away some of our (fill in the blank)s.


Susie's Daughter December 29, 2016 at 2:52 pm

Lisa – thanks for the encouragement! Getting rid of (fill in the blanks) is top of my 2017 list (along with inventory of the freezer and rediscovering what is under the kitchen sink and in the utensil drawer). 🙂


Gina in KY December 29, 2016 at 1:42 pm

Still struggling with *a lot* thrown on me in the past couple of months, but this is why we train for this, right?

Let’s see…

1. Reading the library books. I finished _North of Normal_ (memoir) and _Dust and Grooves_ (the latter is fabulous if you are into vinyl, by the way. I found it just browsing the shelves at the library and I highly recommend it). I am a third of the way into _A Season with the Witch_ which is making me want to visit Salem, Mass in a really bad way.

2. I made two types of Puerto Rican quesitos (a type of pastry) using stuff I already had for the parents of my boyfriend. They generously gave me two large containers of whole bean, fair trade Ethiopian coffee. This should take care of quite a few months of coffee drinking in 2017. They are also always so generous to my children. I gave them a plant already, but I am going to deliver the pastries with a thank you card designed by my 9 year-old artist son.

3. For winter break entertainment, we have rented Redbox movies with a code, built a driftwood fort down by the Ohio River, played Magic the Gathering and other games we received for the holidays and read lots of books and comic books.

4. For New Year’s Eve we plan to Redbox the movie Suicide Squad (if you can’t tell, we are big superhero geeks over here) and eat junk food (aka clean out the ‘fridge). I also found pumpkin cider marked down at Aldi. I hope it’s good. Bottom line: We are staying in!

5. Working on a new Bullet-type journal for 2017. I started one last year and used it throughout the year. I plan to step up the BJ game and actually be a little more artistic with this one. I bought it on clearance months ago at Target and I bought a pack of fun pens at Staples using a $10 off $10 coupon. I am also going to add a budget and frugal happenings section to it.

6. Gearing up for a “Eat from the Pantry”, “No Spend”, “Compact” 2017. I’ll take it month-by-month, but January, for sure, will be all of these things. I am setting a tough goal to pay off 1/2 my debt. I think, owing nothing unexpected, I can handle this if I put my frugal mind to it.

Happy New Year, Y’all!


Michele December 30, 2016 at 11:19 am

1. I poked around Dollar General today and avoided after Christmas sales (my kryptonite). I only bought what I needed. I did buy some pipe cleaners that were 50 % off, as they were red and green. They are good at cleaning the inside of reusable straws.
2. Changed my grilled chicken menu to our homegrown beef instead after looking at the price of boneless skinless chicken breast at the grocery store.
3. Making a homemade cake ( as always) for #2 son’s birthday.
4. Making chicken and rice with yellow rice I bought for 10 cents! Will pack in #1 son’s lunch tomorrow.
5. Doing all my usual…. Packing lunches, no take out, cutting laundry sheets in half, etc.


Rosanne January 2, 2017 at 5:58 am

Hi Katy. As to getting supplies for ebay, I sell a lot on ebay and etsy (englishfabric) and I get almost all my supplies for free. Start an account with USPS and order the free boxes. They come in packs of 10 or 25 and come straight to your door. Flat rate, variable rate and the least known about , but the most frugal, regional rate. I recycle ink cartridges at Staples. If you don’t have many, you can buy bulk used ink cartridges. Depending on your status at Staples, this gives you 20 or 40 dollars each month. I use mine for tape and other packing supplies.


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