Five Frugal Things

by Katy on September 28, 2017 · 99 comments

  1. My husband recently enjoyed a rather delectable bagel with lox, garnished with thinly sliced pickled red onion. This reminded me that I’d refrigerated a jar of leftover pickle juice from some “Hot Dilly Green Beans” that my husband gifted me from the Twisted Fork Bistro. (My husband knows me well enough to know that my favorite gifts are consumable.) I thinly sliced my own red onion and left them to marinate in the chilled brine. They’ve been sitting in the fridge for a few days now, and we’re enjoying the freshly pickled onion with our home cooked meals. Frugal deliciousness!

  2. I plucked a couple of midcentury style sunburst clocks from a free box and immediately listed them for sale on Facebook Marketplace. I quickly got a ton of interest on one of them and have someone coming over to buy it today. The time it took to put the ads together was less than five minutes. Free money, people! We just paid out to situate our sons in their apartments, as well as their university tuition and fees for the fall quarter. So building our pile of money back up again is a priority. Like winter, January is coming.

  3. I worked yesterday, and although I did buy my lunch in the hospital cafeteria, I drank the free crappy coffee instead of spending any money. Actually, I drank four cups of crappy coffee through my 13-hour shift as I was floated to another unit whose coffee is marginally less crappy. I work again tomorrow and will make sure to pack enough food to get me through the day. After all, I’m there to make money, not spend it.

  4. My husband and I took the afternoon to drive up to Mount St. Helens as the day was bright and clear and neither of us had anything pressing on our schedule. We’d been wanting to do this all summer, but work schedules, forest fires and cloudy weather kept conspiring against us. We picked up cheap bahn mi sandwiches for the trip and filled our water bottles. I made sure to grab our binoculars, as well as our downloaded Game of Thrones audiobook. The weather was perfect and although we did pay $16 to the U.S. Forest Service to explore the Johnston Ridge Observatory, it was money well spent. Although we were both increasingly hungry over the 2-hour drive home, we held out and fixed food from the refrigerator.

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

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

Katy Wolk-Stanley

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

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{ 99 comments… read them below or add one }

Carolyn Arnett September 28, 2017 at 11:07 am

If you can get bahn mi where you live, can you also get pho? With weather finally cooling here, I’d sure go for a bowl of steaming pho. May even learn to make it myself this winter as we have no good pho shop where I’ve moved to and I was spoiled by the shop near where we used to live.


Katy September 28, 2017 at 11:45 am

Oh yes, lots of pho restaurants!


yvette from down under September 28, 2017 at 11:07 am

Spring has sprung down under, warmer sunny days, trees full of blossom and lambs in the fields. 1.Frugal finds on free pile in street included a box of brass door hardware, outdoor decorations and plastic storage tubs. Some for future garage sale, some for my garden and the tubs to use as I reorganise craft stuff in spare cupboard….. win for me and the environment. 2. Lots of leafy veges going to seed , so decided to get healthy and I am juicing stalks full of vitamins and the pulp goes in my worm farm …. they love it !!! 3. Had some new continence pads stashed from caring for my mum at home, pulled the stuffing out and soaked in buckets of water to expand gel crystals, put it at the bottom of holes dug for my new fruit trees to be planted in. This will help keep soil moist by holding water longer at the roots!
4. Recycling polystyrene vege boxes as planters for cuttings until they root, then I plant them up to dog food tins with a couple of wholes punched in base. 5. Roasted shoulder of pork, used up over a few meals then froze the rest in containers for more meals in a few weeks, that way I don’t get sick of the same thing and I can Jazz it up by using in casseroles, fried rice, sandwich fillings etc


Jennifer September 28, 2017 at 11:14 am

Lovely idea with the onions, Katy! I put boiled eggs in pickle juice for a yummy pickled egg.
1. Speaking of pickle juice, we recently got two cases of the Vlasic Farmers Garden pickles through a deal at a auction just thrown in with other random items. We love the pickles but I also love the jar they came in. They are neat, wide-mouth, clear jars with cool measurement marks on the side. I am going to save them all as they become empty for a neat matching set of drinking glasses. My kids have broke so many of my drinking glasses, because the glass was so thin, that I think these will be perfect and they have a “modern farmhouse” look to them.
2. Last night, we ate country style ribs from the reduced section that I cooked low and slow with bits and bobs of BBQ sauce and spices. I made baked beans that I put diced peices of peppers, onions, etc. that I have tossed in the freezer from when we grilled over the weekend.
3. I am still in mourning because my neighbors pit bull dog got loose and ATE all 5 of my one month old kittens. The said neighbor came over to my house and, because I was in shock, I was very ugly to her. This is very out of character for me and I was immediately sorry. I dug into my stash of greetings cards,gifted to me from a friend after his mom died, and found a nice card. I wrote a heartfelt apology note, and put it in her mailbox. It made me feel a little better.
4. When I practice spelling words each night with my daughter, we are using the back of old paper or mail to take practice tests on. Better than just throwing them away.
5. My husband just got back from a doctor’s visit where he was in shock that he is listed as “overweight”. He doesn’t really look overweight but according to his BMI, he is. He is going to drink more water, and so am I, so that will save us some money


Bee September 28, 2017 at 12:46 pm

I am so sorry about the kittens. That must have been a horrible experience. It makes my heart hurt a little.Please don’t be too hard on yourself for being unkind. I have a rescue dog, a lab/pit mix, and I am a dog lover. However, a dog owner should be responsible and not allow his or her dog to run loose —especially if the dog has aggressive tendencies.
I am sensitive to this because of an experience that I had as.a teenager. A pair of Rottweilers entered our backyard while my family was cooking out and killed my kitten. My dad had tried to save her and ended up in the ER. He needed stitches and a tetanus shot. Of course, our neighbor was apologetic, but nothing has erased that memory — even 40 years. To this day, I still do not understand why this individual behaved so irresponsibly.
Again, I am so sorry.


Jennifer September 28, 2017 at 6:34 pm

This was my momma cats second litter. The first litter(4) she had a few months ago each died, one by one. I was burying kitties each day, which was so depressing. But this beautiful litter was perfect, they were all healthy and thriving, not weak like that last ones. They able to really walk yet but getting close. My poor momma cat is so distraught and nervous. She is engorged because the milk has no where to go. So difficult..


Ney September 29, 2017 at 6:02 am


Please consider finding a local rescue with orphan kittens that your cat could ‘adopt.’ They will pay for everything, find them homes when they are old enough and are desperate for nursing cat mamas this time of year. I’m so sorry for your loss but maybe something good can come out of it.

– Ney


kate September 28, 2017 at 12:58 pm

May I comment on the neighbor’s dog incident? I agree that it was appropriate to apologize for being out of line with the neighbor, but I wonder…what is the dog’s status now? If it got out once, it will be back. I suggest you report the incident to your local animal control. Pit bull dogs aren’t all evil, but once a dog has killed something, it will likely happen again. You will be doing yourself and your neighbors a favor.


karen September 28, 2017 at 4:27 pm

I too feel the incident needs to be reported and put in the dog’s file. If anything happens again the dog will have a record. And I would have had trouble apologizing.


Norma September 28, 2017 at 2:20 pm

You’re a better woman than I am. I could never have apologized. In fact, I would have seriously considered (although I could not have done it) killing the pit bull.


Sara September 28, 2017 at 3:27 pm

That is outrageous and very shocking and upsetting behaviour from your neighbour – who is responsible for what the dog does. No apology from you needed but perhaps they should be prosecuted. I am very sad that you had to go through such a horrible experience, it must have left you very upset and shaken. I hope you feel ok soon.


Jennifer September 28, 2017 at 6:24 pm

Thank for all your thoughts and comments. The whole thing has just made me sick, and angry, so I let my husband handle the reporting of the dog. He found out when he went to do the report, that someone else had already signed an affidavit for the dog the same day which will automatically put him on a 5 day hold with a vet. If The vet determines the dog is a threat they will put him down, or so we are told. So, yes, this was definitely reported, appropriately. It had to be done because I also have small children to think of and the dog was growling at me when I walked up to my own door, so, things could have been much worse.
As for the reasons I felt like I should apologize to my neighbor. I am going to be very honest here and some may not be ok with my comment. My family is white and hers is black. I feel like they are somewhat isolated where we live because most of the neighborhood is white. She tried to hug me after the incident, was crying, and pleaded with me that she was not a bad person. I was so shocked that I didn’t even say anything or react while she talked or when she hugged me. There is no telling what kind of look I had on my face, either. I didn’t want her to see this as hatred toward her and don’t want her family to feel further isolation because of this incident. This was the first time I had ever met her! She was so upset and doing everything in her power to try to make me feel better. Yes, I am deeply hurt and in so much pain because I lost part of my family in such a brutal way. However, causing a possible racial divide between us would just cause more pain and that’s just not me. She also has children who love this dog, and being a mom, I know that comes with its own set of issues. We have to live next to each other and I don’t want this incident to get even worse than it is. Thank you again for the comments because it has helped me to talk about this a little, you guys are great.


Robin September 29, 2017 at 6:19 am

This is beautiful. To try and see something from another person’s point of view, especially when it’s such a traumatic event overall, and to try and do what you feel is the right thing, not for any reward, but because it feels right, is simply beautiful. Peace and love to you, your family, and theirs.

Roberta September 29, 2017 at 7:20 am

I’m so sorry to hear about your kittens. I can only imagine how upsetting the incident was.

My sister-in-law grew up with pit bulls, and got one for her family when her children were small. That dog was wonderful with people, but terrible with other dogs. She almost killed another dog once, and my sil had to keep that dog muzzled in a metal cage muzzle for the rest of her life (when she was outside). However, she was calm and peaceful with the family, and really a love. It’s hard to make an adult decision when children are in the picture. I hope everything works out ok with you and your neighbor.

While I would also have probably acted “ugly” to my neighbor, you are doing the right thing by apologizing *because your conscience prompted you to apologize.*

That Other Jean October 1, 2017 at 8:10 am

Thank you for understanding how terrible the dog’s owner must feel. It perfectly normal for you to react angrily to such a horrifying incident, but you were right to apologize if you think you went overboard. It’s definitely not good to have hostile neighbors.

On the other hand, you did the right thing in reporting the attack. A dog that attacks other animals needs to be restrained when outside. I hope the vet determines that the dog is not a threat to people, and can instruct the family in how to be sure it is safe when outdoors. If not, and it has to be put down, you still did the right thing.

I’m sorry for your loss, but the person who advised you to look for a rescue with motherless kittens is spot on. Your cat is likely to adopt them as her own, and let them grow up happier and healthier than if their feeding and raising is left to humans.

Jennifer September 28, 2017 at 6:28 pm

The dog is on a chain and he broke loose while she was out of town. Maybe that is why he is so vicious.


Jennifer September 28, 2017 at 8:15 pm

That is horrible about your neighbor’s dog and your kittens. Don’t feel so bad about your reaction. It was an awful thing to happen. How nice of you to send the card and mend your neighbor relationship, though.

BMI is stupid. It doesn’t take into consideration body type, long or short legs, muscles, etc. Don’t worry about it too much!


nancy from mass September 29, 2017 at 3:25 am

So sorry about your kittens! How terrible.

about BMI….I am 5’2″ and my BMI says that i am morbidly obese. I wear a size 10 pant and an XL shirt (only because my bust size is 40DD). I don’t think that is morbidly obese, but that’s what i’ve been for about 20 years. even though i’ve lost weight since February, i’m still BMI obese. My doctor and i laugh about it each year and she tells me not to worry about it. in fact, according to my weight chart, i’m supposed to be 50 to 70 pounds lighter! That would make me weigh less than my 11 year old nephew.


Jennifer September 29, 2017 at 4:13 am

Mine says I am morbidly obese, also. I am overweight but I don’t feel that I am morbidly obese. If I weighed what I am “supposed” to weigh everyone would think I had a life threatening illness. It’s good for us to eat better and drink more whatever no matter what we weigh. We have really been slacking for awhile so ,even though the BMI is ridiculous, it was a good for us to make a change.


Jen September 29, 2017 at 3:55 pm

I’m 5’10” and female with a small frame. Look perfectly normal but terribly underweight by those stupid BMI standards.


Jen September 29, 2017 at 3:58 pm

P.s. Please consider having that cat spayed. The world does not need more cats. And this is coming from the crazy cat lady that has way too many rescued cats.

Jennifer September 29, 2017 at 5:20 pm

I was planning to get her spayed after this healthy litter. I really wanted these kittens and planned for them. I was going to keep three and give two to my oldest daughter.

Jennifer September 29, 2017 at 4:05 am

My husband has health issues that have cost him to lose a lot of weight but has recently been doing better and has gained weight. It bothers him because he was very overweight before all of this and doesn’t want to get back there. I on the other hand had to laugh a little because I am now not the only one in my home trying to lose weight. I agree, BMI needs to be redesigned to fit all body types better.


Jennifer September 29, 2017 at 4:05 am

*caused him–ugh, typos


Lindsey September 29, 2017 at 8:43 pm

My husband had cancer and lost a huge amount of weight, to the point of being dangerously thin. He actually had two different women visiting his hospital room say they envied him getting a disease that made losing weight effortless. This is a guy who spent months in the hospital and had five surgeries. My husband is a kind man and let it pass. I did not. I hunted each of them down and was pretty brutal about describing exactly what I thought about someone so thoughtless, cruel and superficial. I also told them they were never to darken the doorway of the hospital again. I didn’t scream or swear at them but I was not gentle.


Isabelle September 30, 2017 at 5:40 am

So sorry about your kittens! We are dealing with a pitbull situation ourselves with the neighbor. I wish that race was banned everywhere. I don’t give a shoot about owners claiming “but the dog is sooooooo nice!”, they are always nice until the day they are not anymore!!

Jennifer September 30, 2017 at 7:30 am

Oh my! We have experienced similar instances as this. I think some people just say things without thinking. My husband used to pretty big so when people see him now that haven’t seen him for a few years, they remark about his drastic weight loss as if it is a good thing because they don’t know he has been sick. People assume losing weight is good.

Jennifer September 30, 2017 at 7:56 am

Thanks Isabelle..I think this particular pit is very friendly with his family just not so much strangers and small animals. I have known of dogs with no particular breed to kill small animals, too. I think this particular pit was super aggressive. I was so angry and scared because the dog was growling at me, I probably would have killed him if I had the means at the time.Then I would have probably immediately regretted it. My neighbor had been out of town and had just returned so I also wonder if the dog had been left adequate food while she gone. He may have been super hungry, broke loose from the chain, and came to the first place that he could find food. It’s just been really tough.

Bee September 30, 2017 at 11:31 am

Isabelle, Pit Bulls are not necessarily bad. I have a pit mix, and he is a great dog. However, he has been properly socialized and cared for. He would never hurt another person or animal. He doesn’t even chase squirrels
I believed Jennifer’s neighbor chained the dog to a tree and left it while they were out of town. This is not acceptable. In fact, it is irresponsible at best. Dogs are a lot like children. They respond to love, care, positive reinforcement and structure. So don’t condemn the whole breed. Any dog may bite if provoked, abused, hurt, or hungry.When I was insurance, I had a particularly bad dog bite claim involving a Pekingese, but I never had one involving a Pit Bull.

Rachel September 28, 2017 at 11:43 am

I had a lovely view of Mt St Helens yesterday from one of Portland’s taller buildings – what a fantabulous day for a visit!

1. Lucky streak this week – 3 free restaurant lunches, Monday-Wednesday. Today I brought my lunch to work per usual and was happy to use up the leftover salmon cakes I made the other day.

2. Went to Costco yesterday for my semi-annual trip. Stocked up on all the basics I use regularly and was not tempted into submission by the glittery books or shiny new clothes. Even filled up the ol’ tank with Costco gas.

3. Visited Buffalo Exchange the other day to sell some clothing and use my credit for new-to-me items. I found the perfect fall jacket for around $25. Not as frugal as Goodwill, but the curated selection is so good which makes it much easier for those who don’t have much time or inclination to shop.

4. I started watching Forks Over Knives the other night on Netflix. I love all the great shows available on Netflix. Last week I watched The True Cost and I swear it made me cry! Fast fashion is so destructive on so many levels. I’m ever grateful to be part of communities like NCA that value frugality, simplicity, buying nothing new, sustainability, and the like.

5. I went out to one of Portland’s great music bars for some free live music the other day. Though because I know art is not really free, I bought the CD offered by one of the artists and I’ve been enjoying it in the car. Win for the artist, win for the listener!


Jill A September 28, 2017 at 11:59 am

1. Went with my mother yesterday to the veterans hospital in another town to donate my fathers clothing. While we were in that area we took our styrofoam to a company that recycles it. Across the street was a Goodwill so we stopped and it happened to be a Goodwill outlet. I’d never been. I purchased a chinese edition of Dumbo for one daughter and a cookbook for another for a grand total $1.67. My Mom drove for a change so no gas spent, but I did buy her lunch. I skipped dinner because I was so full and hubby ate leftovers when he got home.
2. Took my youngest to lunch. She’s homesick. It wasn’t frugal but I did drive my Ford Fusion Hybrid (status symbol car) there which saved on gas.
3. Used our cobbled together pool hose to vacuum the pool to get it ready for closing. We need to buy a new tarp for it. They are 30% off this week so I’m hoping to get over and get one.
4. Turned the air conditioning off yesterday as it’s getting a little cooler here. I turned on the fans and placed them in front of the windows to draw the fresh cool air in.
5. Keeping an eye open for household items for my youngest daughters apartment. She doesn’t want to live in the dorms next year. I stopped at a few garage sales today but left empty handed. Since I’m starting early I have plenty of time to find what she’ll need.


Cindy in the South I September 29, 2017 at 6:24 am

lol on the status symbol car …I remember the last post.


Mrs Stookey September 28, 2017 at 12:50 pm

my fft
1) eating frito pie using the chili I had batch cooked earlier this month.
2) took a shopping list to the dolar tree and walmart for a few end of the month grocery items
3) found 6 six yesterday, it went into the change jar
4) planning errands so that tomorrow after my check up appointment I can get two other errands done
5) bought a necklace for 1 dollar for my halloween costume, bought it from the flea market sale at the nursing home where my MIL lives. Money is benifiting Dementia and alzhimers research.


Mrs Stookey September 28, 2017 at 12:51 pm

6 cents not 6 six ugh my brain


Jennifer September 28, 2017 at 6:53 pm

1. I love frito chili pie. Will have to put that on the ‘must make’ list for when, if ever, it decides to turn cooler in my area.


Mand01 September 28, 2017 at 12:55 pm

1. Worked from home, saving money on petrol and time.
2. My husband and I had our hair cut at the bargain salon instead of traveling across town to our old hairdresser. I’m also colouring my own hair now with the help of my daughter, and she actually does a better job. I’m saving $50 a month doing this and more importantly, a lot of time. I’d give up the colouring but I went grey very young and I look ten years older than I am without colouring my hair, which frankly sucks. All the women in my family go grey really young.
3. I bought a gift of fancy schmancy tea and an infuser for my best friend and got a free iced tea. Kind of frugal/not frugal I guess as the gift was pretty expensive…but she’s my sister from another mister so I like buying her a nice gift.
4. Hung all my laundry in our perfect spring weather.
5. Made a deal with my family to only give homemade or thrifted gifts this Christmas. Max spend: $2


yvette from down under September 28, 2017 at 6:34 pm

Hey Mandy, I went grey at 30 and have died my own hair for last 30 years. Have gradually lightened the colour to suit changing complexion. I stockpile when it’s at half price. If I’m only doing the roots I halve the products to make it last for a second time. Costs me about $8 per month which is a big saving !!! Great that your daughter helps, I find doing the back of my head a challenge!!! Yvette


Mand01 September 28, 2017 at 9:37 pm

Maybe it’s being an Aussie gardener that causes our hair to go grey early – all that sun!


Bee September 28, 2017 at 1:14 pm

I feel like my FFT are a bit repetitive, but I seemed to be stuck in a rut.

1) I sold two items making a $32 profit.

2) I worked my little side hustle. I brought my lunch and my water. By noon, I really needed a cup of crappy coffee, but there was none to be found.

3) I am wearing a $2 thrifted blouse and $3 pants. I received many compliments on my beautiful blouse. 🙂

4) We will have clean- out -the-refrigerator night using all the odds and ends for dinner. I am busy processing my farm share that I received today. Hurray for farm-fresh tomatoes!

5) I stopped at an estate sale where I bought two Alex & Ani bracelets — new and in the box. I will either use these as gifts or sell them. I also bought two matching, high quality sets of bathroom accessories – soap dish, soap pump and tooth brush cup. These had never been used. They had been bought to stage the home for sale and are perfect for the double sinks in our bathroom. I spent $25 on everything which isn’t as cheap as the pay-by-the-pound Goodwill, but a bargain none the less.


Jennifer September 29, 2017 at 6:46 am

Frugality is sometimes a “slog through the mud” as someone here posted once. Not always exciting yet still producing results. I got my mom one of those bracelets for Christmas last year for a very good deal, though probably not as good as yours, and she loves it.


Susie's Daughter September 29, 2017 at 7:21 am

Bee and Jennifer – I am taking encouragement from both of your comments about the ruts and the slog. My frugality enthusiasm has been lacking these last few weeks and these comments help!


Mary W September 30, 2017 at 10:00 am

I’m another one who sometimes thinks I don’t have anything to post because I’m just doing the usual frugal things. I post when I have some good frugal finds or am doing something kind of “post-worthy”, but maybe I should post the day in day out ordinary stuff, too. Thanks!


Jennifer September 30, 2017 at 2:52 pm

I actually enjoy reading the ordinary stuff. Maybe I am boring, but it is continuous reminder for me when I see what others are doing. After all, what may be routine to some may be something frugal that someone else never even thought of.

Anne V. September 28, 2017 at 1:25 pm

1) Instead of taking my car, I walked my broken bicycle into town for repair. Got some fresh air, exercise and supported a local family-owned business.

2) Sold some books to a used bookstore “Half-Price Books”. They paid out $12.95, a paltry sum (in my opinion) for the quantity and quality of the books I brought in. In the past, I have always donated books to our public library, and I think I may just go back to doing that.

3) Sold a purse, a pair of exercise leggings, and several of my husband’s LL Bean shirts on eBay.

4) More passive frugality: eating leftovers, staying out of stores like Target and my one-time Achilles heel – TJ Maxx, deferring trips to the grocery store as long as possible.

5) Frugal fail: My two teenagers waste a lot of paper towels. Did you know it takes two paper towels to wipe your mouth? I already buy the “select-a-size” rolls to try to reduce waste, but I took it one step further this week and sawed the roll in half with a bread knife. My family rebelled and I was mercilessly ridiculed. Back to full rolls.


Mary W September 28, 2017 at 2:01 pm

Maybe seeing the roll you sawed in half will at least make them think twice when they pull a towel from the full sized roll.


Mary W September 28, 2017 at 2:39 pm

I just tried to post my frugal five and got a service error, losing my post in the process. I’ll try again.

1. I spotted a garbage can on the side of the road. When it was still there a few days later, I stopped and picked it up. It needed a good cleaning – there was oil and grease in the bottom – and had a small dent and split near the top. The dent popped right out and I sealed the split with Gorilla Tape inside and out. I even had a lid in my stash that fit it. One wheeled Rubbermaid garbage can, ready for use. It’s handy living fairly near the transfer station – I find cans and/or lids along the road a few times a year.
2. I also spotted a couple tools on the side of the road – again, after a couple days, I stopped to look at them and found a very nice pair of wire stripping pliers and a double ended hex socket wrench.
3. While dropping off my recycling, I found a large pot, just right for potting up a small tomato plant that is going to spend the winter in my house.
4. I have several more tomato plants in huge pots that are loaded with green fruit. As soon as it looks like it’s going to frost, all of them are coming inside to live. With LED lights, it won’t cost much to keep them growing well and ripening tomatoes that will taste better than anything from the store (and will be free).
5. I was also gifted a number of Mortgage Lifter tomatoes from my bell choir director. That’s an open-pollinated heirloom tomato, so I’ve saved as many seeds as possible from it and will start my plants from seed next year. She also gave me some yellow tomatoes that had no tag, so I have no idea if they are hybrids or open-pollinated. I saved some seeds from them, too, and will grow out a few to see what I get. The last few years, I haven’t gotten around to starting seeds and had to buy plants, which is much more costly than seeds, especially if the seeds are free. At least I did get a number of my plants free from winning a gift certificate to the FFA plant sale this spring.


Mary in Maryland September 28, 2017 at 2:04 pm

1. Bought three half bushel boxes and canned 59 jars of tomatoes.
2. I was going to return the boxes and had them in the car. I noticed a moving truck and a huge pile by the curb several blocks from home. I asked the woman puttering in the yard if she was moving in. No, out. Is all this garbage? She said it was good stuff but she couldn’t get it in the truck. So I loaded up my car. Painting equipment, cleaning supplies, drain degreaser, brooms and dustpans, decorative objects, folding canvas lawn chairs. I noticed a half bottle of olive oil in one of the boxes and asked if she was throwing away food. She instructed me to take my boxes inside and clean off the counters. Condiments and staples, nuts, coconut, frozen berries and vegs. When going through one pile, I noticed an Eddie Bauer jacket and asked if she was really throwing this away. No, and she was relieved that I Had noticed and asked.
3. I had an apt with the eye doctor later that morning and we took the pup to the vet right after. On the way home we donated lots to the thrift shop. Bill suggested we stop for lunch. I declined, because…the food boxes included left-over Thai food. He was appropriately dazzled.
4. I freecycled the painting stuff, the cleaning supplies, two sprinklers, a vacuum cleaner, and the degreaser. No takers yet for the bag of condiments.
5. I kept most of the staples, a small step stool that folds flat, a new dishpan, and a large insulated container for water. I may use the ketchup, mustard, and barbecue sauce to make baked beans for a potluck on Saturday.
6. The big project for the week–two neighborhood chestnut trees started dropping last Thursday. I’ve been picking the ground clean every morning (because they get weevils over time.) I love being up at dawn and watching the world wake up as I pick. A nice bell-shaped curve of output peaked on Sun-Mon with 17 pounds each day. My total haul has been 74 pounds. So far I’ve processed 53 pounds. I dry the little ones for us in our cereal. And I freeze the larger ones (after I peel them) for soups, cassoulet, etc. It’s been a long, hot week of processing, but winter Mary will be grateful and my curly hair has looked fabulous from all the steam.


Susie's Daughter September 29, 2017 at 7:23 am

Mary – I am in awe of your totals from #1 and #6. Go YOU! And I appreciated the curly hair comment as a “humidity hair” person. 🙂


Beth Anne September 28, 2017 at 3:04 pm

1. Swagbucks, swagbucks, swagbucks! There is a spare computer at work and have been letting Encrave run on it while I am at work doing absolutely nothing and earning points. Also let it run at home earning more points. Should have another Walmart $25 certificate soon. 🙂
2. Made daughter refrain from seconds last night so the tuna patties I made would stretch to tonight saving on an additional main entre cost and our waste lines. 😉
3. Tonight we had the left over tuna patties and I made potato oven fries – oven helped heat up the house as it stayed below 60 today outside. Also have a space heater running in the living room to compensate and will run one tonight prior to going to bed to save on turning the furnace on.
4. Used two Meijer $10 rewards certificates I had at Meijer yesterday to pay for groceries we needed, love getting those 🙂
5. Went to Kroger for gas and got 34 cents off of each galloon for my gas reward, sweet!
6.Frugal fail – our 9 month puppy had been throwing up bile. Only vet appontment available cost $20 more than the regular appointments because it was a “fit in.” (We take her to the Humane Soceity for vet services, much cheaper then the local vet but still not in the budget.) Found out puppy has acid reflux! Good news is she can take the same medicine I take but in smaller doses.


Jen September 29, 2017 at 4:31 pm

Hope you offered your daughter a different type of of food. Restricting food with young girls can have consequences.


KJD509 September 28, 2017 at 4:04 pm

1) Had promised a young colleague an evening of advice over beer, my treat. He selected this (very broke) week, and the group was larger than expected. But it turned out to be half-price-all-day special, so I got out of there for $35. And mentoring is valuable – wish I’d had more of it when I was a pup!
2) We are pushing back on a realtor who would like to list our rental home for sale for just about 15% over what we paid for it nearly 4 years ago, even though we added bedrooms and bathrooms and the market has risen nearly that much in that neighborhood without the improvements. I am not a fan of conflict, but we’re pretty sure it’s worth significantly more than that.
3) Really happy these days about our (free!) email, which allows the family to share a calendar and keep in touch every day. We text and call, too, but email is free.
4) Brought delicious leftovers to work for lunch every day this week. Also brought stale bread to toast for afternoon snack. Not delicious at all, but keeps me away from the (pricey) cafeteria.
5) Didn’t buy a used car from a colleague yesterday. I still might, but need to think about it a little longer.


cathy September 28, 2017 at 5:24 pm

RE your #2: Almost 20 years ago we were selling our house due to a cross-country move. I called a realtor I’d known for years. I always assumed we’d use her. She took down all the particulars about the house, ran comps and…came up with a value that was significantly less than what we knew we could get. I reviewed the report, found several incorrect pieces of information, called her and gave her correct info and asked her to run the report again. When she did, the value came up $250 LESS than the first time. It was an old Victorian home and I noticed that the first time she ran the numbers, she described it as “Good” condition. The second time–with the corrections/improvements–it was described as either Fair or Poor condition. I realized right then that she’d intentionally changed it to get a lowball number. In the end, I’m sure she just wanted it to move quickly, which it would have because it would have been underpriced. I was not just disappointed that she’d do that to us, but mad that it seemed so underhanded. We hadn’t yet signed a contract, so I turned around and called a different realtor. We didn’t know him, but he specialized in our neighborhood. In the end, we sold it for ~$35,000 MORE than what the first realtor said it was worth. Sorry to ramble so long, but do what’s best for you. If your realtor is lowballing it, find another realtor.


Jennifer September 28, 2017 at 6:48 pm

Great advice!


Susan September 28, 2017 at 5:05 pm

Took a page out of the book of Katy and sold a brand new item on ebay that I scored at the By the Pound Goodwill. Hooray! Also used the Restore/Habitat for Humanity to purchase a number of items we needed for our home rehab. Never fear, I used a 20% off coupon to further the savings and support home ownership in the community. Our new to us home was built in 1900 and hasn’t been touched in a good 30 years….
Thanks for all the encouragement to keep it frugal and out of the landfills!


Katy September 28, 2017 at 5:06 pm

Yay, what was it?


Alexia September 28, 2017 at 6:21 pm

Every time you say you drank the free crappy coffee I wonder why you don’t bring a thermos of good coffee from home. It’s not as cheap as free but it’d still be pretty cheap and it would be so much more pleasurable to drink.


Katy September 28, 2017 at 8:56 pm

I’m not so picky.


Kathy Hairston September 28, 2017 at 7:39 pm

Sold 2 items on amazon and 1 on eBay
Had a networking lunch today paid for by the organization I am volunteering with
Hung delicates and hubbys golf shirts to dry on rolling rack in garage. They were dry in a couple of hours
Redeemed a very old Groupon for a juice cleanse for tomorrow
Frugal fail $428 in new tires for my paid for 2009 Malibu


Alison September 29, 2017 at 7:29 am

I also need new tires for my 2002 Subaru. I’ve been resisting this, and DH says he’s just trying to make sure I’m safe! So I guess that is actually frugal…..


cathy September 29, 2017 at 2:28 pm

Had to buy tires for our ’01 Subaru. Expensive, but we have few problems with the car so I amortize the cost over a year and it makes me feel a little bit better…


deanna ar October 1, 2017 at 8:41 am

Can’t remember if I posted this before…we paid for a new set of tires with our Discover Cashback $$$ which I had been accumulating for quite awhile. So nice. In order to build up Cashback, we put everything we can on Discover and always pay it off in full at the end of each month.


Kim in Maryland September 28, 2017 at 9:19 pm

1. Sold a NIB K-cup holder on FB Yard sale page today. I’d listed it quite awhile ago and had a few nibbles but nothing materialized. Out of the blue someone messaged me and picked it up 2 hours later. Yahoo! $10 in, stuff out!
2. Picked up my 2 digital coupon freebies at the grocery store tonight, a Green & Black organic chocolate bar ($3.99) and a Birds Eye Superfood blend ($3.49). Didn’t get anything else. $7.50 in free food!
3. Found a 50p at the Coinstar. Saving all British $ and Euros for my someday trip to Paris and the UK!
4. Picked up two bottles of Old Spice body wash from a fellow Freecycler. DS#1’s favorite!
5. I’ve been decrapifying my craft/sewing/reseller office space to get ready for fall/ holiday selling and crafting. I listed 31 items on Amazon. Have a bunch to list on FB or Craigslist. A bag of craft paint and stencils for a Special Ed teacher, who requested some on Freecycle, is being picked up tomorrow. Also 2 bags of fabric and trim will go to my friend who does charity sewing. Another bag of stuff for a teacher friend and a bag of stuff for our church free flea market next month. Also pulled the supplies for our next 2 crafts at MOPS. Getting there bit by bit!


deanna ar October 1, 2017 at 8:48 am

Kim, re your #2…it works!! One of the servers at a small restaurant that we used to frequent saved all her tips in the huge glass water bottles and used the coins to pay for a trip to Cancun. Her only problem was lifting the very heavy jars of coins when she was ready to take it to the bank to cash in!


Alexandra September 29, 2017 at 12:28 am

1. made fried rice with leftover teriyaki pork from freezer.
2. got ginormous bag of basmati rice from costco. Don’t think we will need rice again for years.
3. worked an event with sampling of sausages. very low turnout. got to bring home 1 lb for free. Into the freezer!
4. started playing with to track paying down personal loan and car loan. it says if we keep up our debt snowball, will have all INCLUDING mortgage paid off in 8 years. addicted to site now. free site!
5. finally went online a checked hotel rewards programs through all my work travel. have two free hotel nights banked. will use that for some upcoming trip. Exciting to consider!


nancy from mass September 29, 2017 at 4:27 am

1. my beautiful niece came over last night and treated us to sushi. She had a maid of honor gown that needed hemming for this sunday. 3 layers of fabric and i said a prayer before i started. I’m very good at hemming but was worried i would measure incorrectly and screw it up. it turned out perfect! Best thing was hanging out with her 🙂
2. i saved the wasabi and pickled ginger left over from our large order to use on other meals this weekend. I like making ‘deconstructed’ sushi (rice, salmon, ginger, wasabi and a torn nori sheet) in a bowl.
3. found a consignment shop a few towns away. i’ve driven by there multiple times and finally stopped in. bought a GORGEOUS old tablecloth for my table and my son found a very cool framed etching of “old ironsides”. spoke with the owner about consigning some products there. i plan on using them to get rid of some of my moms (and my) stuff.
4. a couple of great sales this weekend i’m going to take advantage of. including petite sirloin steaks for $2.99! (i’ll buy a few and freeze for DS)
5. plan on doing some yard work over the weekend – free exercise!


nancy from mass September 29, 2017 at 4:29 am

BTW: I already used the tablecloth. it will be washed and hung on the line today. I love real fabric tablecloths and the feel of the fabric on the old cloths is so much nicer than todays fabric.


susanna d September 29, 2017 at 5:38 am

1. Used two Walgreens Register Rewards to restock our supply of liquid hand soap and laundry soap. Total out of pocket cost for 4 containers of hand soap and a jug of laundry soap was $1.14.
2. Used a $10 Kohl’s Cash to bring the cost of a package of dish cloths and a kitchen timer down to $1.38. While I could probably cut up an old sweatshirt or something to make dish cloths, these were the super thick, textured dish cloths that I love. We don’t have a dishwasher, so every dish, cup, etc. gets hand washed – which may help explain my dish cloth obsession. Yet another of my strange quirks…
3. Cashed in grocery store pump perks to save $10.60 on a fill-up of gasoline. The store recently changed the program, making the earning potential one third of what it used to be. $10 is still a nice discount, though – I mean, I’d be absolutely thrilled to find a $10 bill on the ground.
4. Brought a 5 gallon gas can along in the truck when we went to cash in our pump perks – the limit on using pump perks is 20 gallons, and the truck normally only takes around 15 or 16. I like to make sure I apply my cents-off-per-gallon to a full 20 gallons.
5. Contacted a company about a problem with a bag of tortilla chips, and received TWO coupons for free bags. With the gazillion jars of salsa we canned earlier this month – okay, 30 jars – that’ll make for a lot of free snacking.


Mary W September 30, 2017 at 10:18 am

Wow, Susanna d, that’s an awesome oop cost for the detergent and hand soap. My dishwasher is broken, so we hand wash everything, too. I love my knitted dishcloths, but my daughter likes the sponge puffs on a stick from Dollar Tree. I throw the wet sponges in the microwave for a minute every few days to make sure they stay reasonably sanitary, since I can’t run them through the laundry like I do with dishcloths.


susanna d October 1, 2017 at 6:21 am

Thanks, Mary!

Oh, and just a comment about the Mortgage Lifter tomatoes you mentioned in your post above: we used to grow Mortgage Lifters back when we lived in a different part of the state – one that was in a very different (read: much warmer) climate zone. Those were our favorite tomatoes ever. The taste was amazing, and the size? I’d get a lot of two pounders – I have a picture of me holding one of the tomatoes using both hands, and that tomato spanned the entire area of both my hands. My mortgage lifters are one of the things that I miss living up here – where some years even cherry tomatoes are a challenge to grow.


Beth September 29, 2017 at 6:27 am

I’ve fallen off the frugal/non-consumer wagon lately.

1. But, I brought leftovers for lunch today and am staying hydrated with free water.
2. I’m on the hunt for Navy throw pillows. I was at Target last night, and they had adorable ruffled navy pillows for (!) $25/pillow . I didn’t buy any, because I would’ve wanted 3 or 4, and I’ve decided instead to check the thrift stores in my area over the weekend (and maybe the next few weeks).
3. I am wearing a new article of clothing for the first time in a while, but it fits me well (and at 8 weeks pregnant with my second, nothing fits me). It’ll most-likely be perfect post-partum for a while too.
4. I’ve been washing my hair once a week, and I conditioned my hair with an egg before yesterday’s wash. My hair is now shiny and moisturized (probably able to hold onto moisture better because of the protein it got from the egg), and I’m wearing it down for the second day in a row. Usually, It starts looking limp after 1/2 day down. The egg cost 30 cents!
5. I found a penny on the ground the other day and promptly put it in my pocket.


Mary W September 30, 2017 at 10:21 am

Congratulations on your coming baby! How exciting. 😀


Mrs. Picky Pincher September 29, 2017 at 6:32 am

You’d think they’d give y’all some decent coffee seeing as how you’re bringing in new life to the world and whatnot. 😛

This week:

1. I’ve been sick the last few days. I didn’t have meds yesterday, so I whipped up a good cup of tea to soothe my throat. I was also grateful that we held onto a bag of on-sale cough drops from last year, which were amazing.

2. I removed blackheads from my face with a DIY pore strip (made from milk and gelatin).

3. Tonight I’m making a creamy pumpkin pasta with leftover pasta and some cooked pumpkin that’s been sitting in my fridge.

4. This weekend I plan to take it easy since it’s so rainy and gross outside. I’ll bake homemade cookies and freeze them for later so we don’t have to buy sweets at the store (or feel tempted to buy them, at least).

5. I got out of work travel for next week, which saves me money, time, and wear on my vehicle.


cathy September 29, 2017 at 2:35 pm

Don’t know what kind of cookies you’re planning to bake, but if you like warm cookies, sometimes it’s good to scoop the dough into individual cookie balls and freeze them raw. Then you bake up as many as you want in the future. I do this, especially with chocolate chip. I’ll bake maybe a dozen, then scoop the rest using a melon baller, and freeze. My son was thrilled the other day when I surprised him with warm choco-chip cookies.


Roberta September 30, 2017 at 6:03 am

And if you have a toaster oven, instead of a toaster, you don’t have to heat up the big oven to do it — faster and more energy efficient.


Susie's Daughter September 29, 2017 at 7:35 am

Trying to get back on the frugal bandwagon with all the inspiration of this crowd…
1) Pick (or picked up) apples with my mom this morning at their house from the “organic” (ie. wild growing) apple trees. I think I brought home about 7 pounds which will become apple sauce and chopped apple, used for pie filling and apple cake. Both sauce and chopped will go in freezer.

2) Avoided buying a treat on the way home from my folks (20 mins away) and had a pumpkin muffin from the freezer when I got here.

3) Bought two more bags of King Arthur Flour on sale for $2.50/bag – a good price for our area. May have enough to get through the holiday baking season, but it will probably go on sale again before Thanksgiving.

4) Our mortgage company audits escrow accounts in Oct and we received a surprise rebate check. It seems larger than is reasonable, so I will call to confirm their process and math. But if it is right, then BIG YAY!

5) Finished reading a library book and will donate magazines to the free pile when I return the book. Thank goodness for libraries and librarians!


Roberta September 29, 2017 at 7:38 am

1. Drove my husband in to work today, so I could drive the hybrid down to the bins. I had to wake up early, but I enjoyed the time talking to him, uninterrupted.
2. My son made a double batch of pasta/bean dinner last night, so we’ll actually have leftovers for lunch today. Two athletic teenagers means leftovers are scare around here!
3. Redeemed my coupon card at Grocery Outlet for $30! For every $30 spent I got a sticker, and I filled up my card at last! Time to start a new card.
4. Nights are cool, so we’ve been cooling off the house at night and closing the house up during the day. We haven’t even needed fans to keep cool (and laundry dries really fast in this weather).
5. Batched all my errands, and did all my shopping for the week. I didn’t make a menu, so I hope everything works out ok!


Mary W September 30, 2017 at 10:26 am

I don’t think our Grocery Outlet has that program. They do print coupons for $$ off on so much spent, and I try to remember to use them before they expire. With a big dog and 5 cats, I can always use dog food or cat litter if I don’t have anything else I need to buy.


Dori September 29, 2017 at 8:38 am

So impressed you made it all the way back from your fun little road trip excursion without stopping for fast food or something on the way home! Sometimes on outings like that when the drive home seems to stretch to being SOOO long and tedious, it’s tough to resist all the little restaurants you pass along the way. You guys are an inspiration!


nancy from mass September 29, 2017 at 8:50 am

As far as the free crappy hospital coffee…When my husband was in ICU, the nurses kept apologizing for the crappy coffee (my son, SIL and i spent about 72 hours there without leaving and my FIL and MIL came down each day) that they had to offer us (didn’t even have tea there). After Hubby passed, my SIL and I put together a large basket with bags of local coffee brands, teas and lots of snacks/candies and delivered it to the ICU department. (It was difficult for me being beeped in since it had only been about 5 days). they were so thankful and grateful for our gift. we did go down to the cafeteria at times for coffee or tea, but that wasn’t opened past a certain hour. (we did nap, in a chair, from time to time but really needed coffee). and no, i don’t suggest that amount of time without sleep. my son had a seizure after from exhaustion.


HeatherS September 29, 2017 at 11:52 am

I am always so impressed when I read about how you are helping your sons with their college expenses. If it is not too personal, would you mind sharing how much of the expenses you pay – not specific dollar amounts – but do you pay all of their expenses? Are they expected to cover some either via work, loans or scholarships? Just curious as my son is a high school senior and we have not decided exactly how to handle this next year. We are late to the retirement savings game and know we should be putting as much as possible there, but I don’t want to see him come out of college with tons of debt either.


Ruby September 29, 2017 at 12:04 pm

It’s been a rocky week for frugality. I did all the usual frugal things, but also spent $253 at the veterinary ophthalmologist on our oldest rescue dog to learn that she has a progressive genetic disorder that will soon leave her blind. I did a grab and go fast food lunch twice, which is two more times than I ought to have.

We had been expecting our dog to need eye surgery and had saved up the money to pay for it in cash. Unfortunately, surgery will not help her, so we can rather sadly sock that money away toward rebuilding our back porch. Fortunately, our house is perfectly suited to a blind dog, she has her sighted sisters to help her get around, and she’s otherwise perfectly healthy.


janine September 29, 2017 at 2:05 pm

Doggie is lucky to have you in her life. We also adopted a rescue dog who has proven to be an expensive ‘investment’, but he brings so much love and happiness into our lives it is worth every penny.


Juhli September 29, 2017 at 4:38 pm

I agree that your dog is lucky to have you as his family! Our little rescue dog has an autoimmune disease that requires monthly meds to stay alive but she is a joy.


Ruby September 29, 2017 at 5:00 pm

All three of our rescued girls have had health problems, but they are totally worth it. We just adore dogs.


ouvickie September 29, 2017 at 8:21 pm

I spent a lot of money on vet bills for one of my rescued fur-babies, before my country vet figured out it was food sensitivities. I don’t regret spending money on the vet or the more expensive food to keep all 3 of them healthy. They are good companions and loads of entertainment.
I’m glad your dog has such a caring owner and sisters to help her through the rest of her life.


Cindy in the South I September 29, 2017 at 12:40 pm

1.I went to a free work luncheon and had delicious pork bbq, green beans, roll,mac and cheese, potato salad, lettuce and tomato salad, baked beans, lemonade, and lemon ice box pie……it was soooo good! I was so stuffed I did not eat supper….lol .
2. I was given a bag of chips at the luncheon for a snack. I did not eat it that day, and took it home with me, so I had it at lunch today.
3. The luncheon had “fancy people” i.e. folks flown in from all over the U.S. to make presentations, so I had to dress up even more than usual. I usually have to wear a matched suit every day anyway, but I kicked up my game a notch as far as looking a bit more stylish than usual. I wore a skirt I purchased from J.C. Penney’s about three years ago, and a shirt I had purchased on sale from Kmart. No one was the wiser, especially with my thrifted, expensive jacket….lol.
4. My friend gifted me a bag of roasted peanuts from a local man who does his own roasting. They were fabulous!
5. I brought chicken I cooked at home for lunch today.
Geez, all of my Frugal Five involves food……


Cindy in the South I September 29, 2017 at 12:42 pm

I should add, the luncheon was yesterday. I did not eat the huge feast mentioned above, AND my homemade chicken today. I would have waddled out of work if that had been the case….lol


tonya September 29, 2017 at 2:37 pm

1) I used coupons and rebates today at the grocery store. I also found markdowns- meat, produce, and dairy. Every bit of grocery savings is helpful with two growing teens living at home.
2) Colored and trimmed my own hair today. The color is a no ammonia, natural brand, bought on markdown at Sprouts. My hair is long, so it was easy to just flip it over my shoulder to the front and trim off about an inch.
3) Dinner is in the Crock-Pot.
4) Hubby and I both ate leftovers for lunch.
5) The usual-wearing thrifted clothes, reading library books, and drinking coffee made at home.


Alison September 29, 2017 at 5:02 pm

1. Make another batch of doggie cookies today.
2. Finishing crocheting another scarf. Yarn cost me $8. It turned out rather well. I’m undecided whether to keep it or donate it. Crocheting keeps my hands busy while watching TV.
3. DH bought a new canvas for our deck umbrella. The old one was stained and torn. I washed it and it has gone in the textile recycling bag. It was not salvageable. At least it will stay out of the landfill.
4. I used a $15 rewards coupon to buy a top that was originally $78, marked down to $40, so got it for $25.


Elizabeth Bishop September 29, 2017 at 5:24 pm

Katy, you find the best stuff in free boxes and free piles. Those midcentury style sunburst clocks would NEVER make it to a free box around here! (My small town is known for its antiques and collectibles stores…’nuff said.

I haven’t posted any FFT lately, because it feels like I’ve had more frugal fails than wins lately. Maybe that’s turning around.
1) Scored a free food dehydrator by coming to pick it up the same day it was posted on fb marketplace (they were only asking $2 for later pickup). Looking forward to trying it out this weekend on some celery and almost over the hill onions.
2) Received a refund check from my dentist ($400+ and change). Apparently, my dental insurance covered more than they thought….even though it’s my money I’m getting back, it’s still welcome….because…
3) I had a CT coronary calcium score done, as recommended by my doctor. My calcium score is great – yay! No blockages! – but they found some sort of cystic mass on my spine, so now I need an MRI. Boo! We’ll have to pay the first $600 of whatever they charge for the MRI (our deductible), and 20% of the remainder. Ouch. The mass is not suspicious for cancer, and I don’t have any symptoms, thank goodness. Tests not so frugal, but trying to maintain good health is.
4) Going to my great-niece’s baby shower tomorrow. Bought a baby gift at Target – got a $5 Target gift card, plus $ off using Cartwheel. Got another $5 gift card for buying two bundle packs of kleenex tissues (I supply my own at work, plus we all suffer from seasonal allergies, so we go through a lot). Bought a cute card and gift bag at the dollar store (didn’t have appropriate bag or card in my stash), and used tissue paper I already had to “fill” the bag. Lunch will be provided, so free lunch!
5) Cooking up fresh chicken that didn’t get used for a week night dinner (last night). Will make a chicken pot pie with it….yum!

Doing all my usual things…..bringing packed lunch to work, making my own coffee, wearing thrifted fashion, drinking free yummy coffee and tea at work. Trying to avoid purchase of gold plated MRI, but it’s hard to resist.


Laur September 29, 2017 at 6:50 pm

1. I sold 2 items on my local buy, sell, swap site for a total of $205. Great feeling to declutter and make some cash at the same time!
2. I received a $50 refund for an event my friend and I signed up for. Unfortunately the speaker was unwell and had to cancel. We were both disappointed, however we each saved on the admission fee and the dinner cost beforehand.
3. I took the kids to a play date at our local park instead of a play centre. The weather was fantastic and the kids had a great time playing with their friends. We have amazing parks locally, with huge playgrounds and wasted play. We also brought our own homemade snacks.
4. Cooked up a big batch of fried rice for dinner and popped the extras in the freezer for quick meals when we are too busy to cook.
5. Purchased a $200 supermarket gift card and saved $10 off the price. I’m going to endeavour to do this going forward as not only do I save $10 per card but I get the supermarket points as well to get $10 off a shop when I accumulate enough points.


Laur September 29, 2017 at 6:53 pm

Water play*


ouvickie September 29, 2017 at 7:51 pm

1) I set up 3 billing accounts to be paid online each month, thus saving myself 3 postal stamps.
2) I went to Petsmart today to p/u a bag of training treats for our two littlest fur-babies. I checked the price on their cat food, but decided it was cheaper at the farm & ranch store, so I drove over there to take advantage of the better price for both wet and dry food.
3) My grandson’s birthday is this month and he had $5 in Gamefly reward bucks he needed to spend, so I had him login and choose a used game we could apply this to. He’s getting a PS4 game for less than $12. That’s a lot cheaper than new and he can trade that game at Gamestop when he gets bored with it.
4) I picked up the latest Jan Karon book on CD at the Library with my favorite shopping card. I love her Mitford series – the stories are humorous and endearing. They make my work commute and running errands fun.
5) Hubby wants to fly to Florida next week to see friends, but I’d rather wait until next year, when our savings is fatter and I’m lighter. If I’m going to visit the beach, I’d rather work on my physique a little more. We just got back from vacation a few weeks ago, plus I’d rather visit Jacksonville after they’ve had more time to clean up from the hurricane damage. I doubt they need visitors in the way so soon.


Bee September 30, 2017 at 2:42 am

The Mitford series is wonderful. It is very positive and heartwarming. BTW, the greater Jacksonville area is not at its best yet, but things are slowly getting back to normal. However, the tree damage and beach erosion are significant. Those areas impacted by the flooding will take sometime to clean up entirely.
We are supposed to have a Nor’easter next week, so it won’t be the best sunning and swimming weather. Of course, the beach is always beautiful.


Mary W September 30, 2017 at 10:52 am

I just discovered the Mitford series. I’ve read the first 3 books so far and am really enjoying them. I’m borrowing them from a friend, but I’m also going to check the library so I don’t have to wait until the next time I see her.


Isabelle September 30, 2017 at 3:06 am

* Hubby wanted to go to the restaurant yesterday night. For the 4 of us it’s at least 60$, and this for a cheap meal. Decided to eat at home instead.
* Got a bunch of fruits and vegetables from the clearance rack.
* Returning a dress to the store. It was only 15$, but I still don’t *need* it.
* We have mice in the attic that we can’t get rid off. Called a company to come fix it. The evaluation alone is 130$… Called a family member working in the field : he offered to come take a look for free (will invite him and his wife for dinner)
* Paid 4$ and got 6 rental movies (2,80$/ movie regularly).

Have a great frugal day!


Mary W September 30, 2017 at 11:41 am

Katy, if you are planning to take visitors to Mt St Helens on a regular basis, it might be worthwhile to invest in an annual pass, which you can also use at other national parks and monuments, such as Mt Rainier and Crater Lake. One person with a pass gives the whole group free admission.

1. I discovered a #10 can of tomato sauce had sprung a leak in the pantry (frugal failure there at 2.99 for the can x3 for the 3 cans that appear to be bad, plus a waste of food). I will spend some time today re-canning the contents of the rest of my good #10, making a whole lot of spaghetti sauce. It will give me a chance to try out my Tattler reusable canning lids, as they are plastic. The acids in tomato products eventually eat through metal, which is what caused the can failures in the first place.
2. My first clue that I had a can failure was a stain on the sheet I used as a curtain on the pantry window (right next to the shelves holding the cans). Since I needed to wash it, I also took the time to turn that sheet into proper curtains. Looks nicer than it did. I use sheets to make curtains all the time. Nice fabric in large panels – isn’t that what sheets are? 😉
3. I washed and bleached a number of plastic water bottles yesterday, then refilled with filtered tap water and refrigerated them. I reuse them until they start looking too ratty and then use them frozen in coolers and lunch bags. When I have too many for that, I save them until I will be in an area with a bottle refund center and get my 10¢ per bottle refund on each one.
4. I also washed out and bleached several cat litter jugs. They work well for storing water. Fill with filtered water, add a few drops of bleach per gallon, and they store for months. We have a well, and if the power is out, the well pump is out, so I store plenty of water for drinking, cooking and hygiene. After watching the disaster coverage on TV, I don’t understand why we don’t all store water and food, as well as having a bag of clothes, needed medications, non-perishable food, a way
to filter water and important papers packed and ready to go at all times. I know if I had to leave home in a hurry, say for a wildfire or a chemical spill, I wouldn’t have time to pack and don’t want to end up forgetting something important or landing in a shelter with nothing but the clothes on my back.
5. Still walking with a friend or group, going to free chair exercise classes, riding my free bike and doing plenty of physical activities around home…too far to go to find a gym, even if I wanted to, which I don’t!
6. I enter a few contests at TOPS that have cash prizes for weight loss, and in the past month, I won several times. I’m also only 2 weeks from winning 2 month’s dues…as I have to do is lose or stay even at the next 2 meetings. My goal is to attend without spend! I am more than breaking even so far, and the support of my TOPS group is a big part of keeping on the path of losing weight and gaining fitness and health.


Amanda September 30, 2017 at 12:53 pm

1) Remembered to use a CVS buck when I went in for emergency feminine products. Paying at all reminded me how much I love my Diva cup. Thank you for the recommendation years ago.

2) I added up our so far 2017 non-retirement, non-education savings. Our net savings for the year are $507. Wop wop. But we did cash flow a car, major repairs to our other vehicle, and a surprisingly large tax bill. If we didn’t live UNDER our means in the short term, we would have no hope of living AT our means long term. Soon our income should be going up and daycare expenses down, so I am confident that we are moving in the right direction.

3) Rented our house this weekend on Airbnb.

4) Washed and hung clothes on the line to dry in the fall sunshine.

5) Sending our kids to public schools, ate from the kitchen all week, stayed on top of health insurance claims, cut one son’s hair, went to my stash of thrifted and hand me down clothes to move our growing little girl up in shoes, bought super discounted offbrand printer cartridges, and shopped around for payroll services.


karen October 1, 2017 at 7:38 pm

If you don’t mind would you tell me what you do with all your sensitive and private papers when you rent your house out on AirBnb? I am assuming you are not in the house and strangers are. Thanks


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