Five Frugal Things

by Katy on October 15, 2017 · 85 comments

  1. I worked the past two days and brought my dull leftovers for lunch, and then drank the free crappy coffee and the free delicious tea. My husband spent a day volunteer teaching CPR, and was sent home with delicious Vietnamese food leftovers. It’s been lovely to simply heat up food after work instead of having to actually cook. Pad Thai after a stressful day of work is pretty damned perfect in my world.

  2. I used a $3-off-$25 coupon at the Grocery Outlet and brought home an enormous amount of food. This included two big boxes of Red Rose tea for just $2.50 apiece. This coupon was from a Chinook Book that I received from my local buy nothing group.

  3. I’m planning a trip to New York City in early December to hang out with my sister and ostensibly work on writing. I nabbed a great price on a direct flight that’ll set down in the early afternoon. This is key, since I take public transportation from the airport to her house in The Bronx. Click HERE and HERE to read how I turn NYC into a frugal destination.

  4. I switched one of my dust gathering items from eBay onto Facebook Marketplace, (despite one of my eBay items actually selling a few days ago!) and I stayed at work even though I was given the opportunity to cut out early. (I want a gold-efffing-medal for this one as I was having an awful day!)

  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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{ 85 comments… read them below or add one }

Tracy October 15, 2017 at 5:52 am

Katy I love NYC and will look forward to vicariously enjoying your trip! A couple of frugal suggestions from my recent visit there — if you buy a 7 day transit pass, consider taking the subway to and tram from (or vice versa) Roosevelt Island — amazing views of Manhattan and Long Island City, a lovely 3 mile walk all around the Island (free!) and the tram is way cool. Also we LOVED the Noguchi Museum in Queens (you could easily do day same day as Roosevelt Island, pretty close) and it’s only $10 admission.

1. I have been working hard at reducing food waste and it is paying off on lower grocery bills. I have always been a “stock up” buyer, now for the most part I am waiting to buy stuff –especially produce and perishables –until we are out or almost out. And I am making a conscious effort to use what is there before buying more.
2. I switched my summer clothes in and winter clothes out of the closet I use for storage and realized I had a sweater I bought last year that is very similar to one I had been coveting but resisting buying online. So glad I didn’t succumb.
3. Spent nothing yesterday except for groceries and gas. For groceries, bought sale items and bought snacks for my daughter (bananas, Lara Bars with coupon, Goldfish with coupon and bulk bin trail mix on sale) who was flying to East coast so she wouldn’t have to buy expensive airport & plane food. Resisted urge to get a Starbucks vanilla latte. Resisted urge to go to Goodwill. Resisted urge to go out to dinner. Ate up the last of the chili I made last weekend and watched Project Runway with my husband, a lovely evening!
4. Today I will make a big pot of clam chowder because I had all of the ingredients (except clams) on hand and have some half and half I should use up in next week or so. If I make a big pot of soup on the weekend I can a) use up items I have on hand that need to be used and b) have something to take for lunches and/or to eat on the nights I don’t feel like cooking.
5) Took my mom out for dinner for her birthday Friday night. She had a BOGO coupon for a restaurant that she wanted to use, so pretty frugal!


MommaL October 15, 2017 at 6:20 am

Tracy, re #2, I’ve done that too! I have 3 grey cardigans right now, and they are only a shade difference. It helped when I finally inventoried my closet and wrote down not only what I have but what might fill in some “needs” that would work with what I already have. That’s my Goodwill list.


Tracy October 16, 2017 at 4:28 am

I like that idea!


Shevaun October 16, 2017 at 4:38 am

I like dressing uniform-style: everything is neutral (black, grey, white, or tan, or jeans) and I pretty much wear the same thing every day (pants, shirt, cardigan). Looking at my wardrobe, I have 5 pants, 10 shirts, 5 cardigans, 2 shorts, one pair sneakers, one pair sandals… oh, and two dresses and one pair of high heels. As a SAHM, I am okay with wearing the same clothes until they’re dirty (not nasty dirty, but like need-to-be-washed dirty). I guess this kind of wardrobe wouldn’t work if you were out and about in the world. But maybe a modified version?


Jill A October 15, 2017 at 5:52 am

1. I am planning a weekend away with my husband. I used Expedia to book the hotel. We had a $50 coupon that expires in February. I received the coupon because I had found a cheaper price on the hotel I’d booked earlier in the year and since we are gold members we get $50 if the price drops after booking. I also had some points accrued that we used. We chose a less expensive hotel with a free breakfast. Since it’s off season the prices were pretty good. I also used the swagbucks link so I should get 10% back. It cost nothing to be an Expedia member.
2. My poor daughter has strep throat. The antibiotic the doctor prescribed was free at Meijer. My husband picked up the prescription and at the same time picked up 2 liter diet cokes at Meijer’s 10 for 10 sale. He was able to use 2 $3 mperks rewards. After her appointment my daughter came home for some TLC as well as some Throat Coat tea and chicken noodle soup that was in the pantry. She napped a little and then watched some free Netflix with me. She is feeling better this morning. Hooray for the magic of antibiotics.
3. I made some blueberry scones using blueberries that will soon go bad. I didn’t have any heavy cream so I used some half and half that I had on hand. I only had a small amount of confectioners sugar and only bottled lemon juice for the lemon glaze but I managed to make a light glaze with what I had. They still turned out delicious.
4. I watched my Mom’s dogs for her on Friday while she went to visit my Uncle in another town for the day. Frugal for her and I can pay her back for all the years she helped me out. For dinner I made burgers with ground beef and buns that were in our freezer and I made some delicious red onion marmalade that made them taste amazing. I didn’t have any large tomatoes so we cut up the few cherry tomatoes that I’d picked off my plant. I also put some french fries that I had brought home from a restaurant under the broiler to crisp them up and we finished those off.
5.Saturday morning I went with my mother to a large garage sale that was going on at the fairgrounds. I didn’t find much but I did come home with a new box of silverware for $3. It’s for my youngest’s apartment that she will move into next school year. Since it was my husband’s poker night I met my Mom and a group of our friends for dinner. I ordered water and an inexpensive entree. It was a fun night. Afterwards I relaxed at home with some more Netflix.


Jill A October 15, 2017 at 5:53 am

Wow. I just realized I just wrote a small novel. LOL


Mary W October 15, 2017 at 12:34 pm

Well, reading your novelette makes me feel better. I seem incapable of writing anything else! 😉 😀


Marcia October 15, 2017 at 2:58 pm

Me, too. The hard part is 25 words or less.


Kym Hopkins October 15, 2017 at 2:23 pm

Love it!


Jenny October 15, 2017 at 1:51 pm

Re #3: I read somewhere that you can DIY confectioner’s sugar by putting regular granulated sugar in a blender or food processor. Haven’t tried it yet, though.


Dawn October 15, 2017 at 4:54 pm

In my experience only the blender works for changing granulated sugar into something like confectioner’s or powdered sugar. It just spins around in my food processor.


cathy October 16, 2017 at 3:32 pm

It seems that confectioner’s sugar is a mix of super fine sugar and a starch like tapioca starch or cornstarch. I’ve tried the sugar in the blender/food processor trick to get caster sugar.


Katy in Africa October 15, 2017 at 6:07 am

1. We helped a friend who’s moving pack yesterday and she gave me chicken broth, peanuts, candy, a brand new oven thermometer, clothes and some other random things she was getting ride of.
2. My husband quickly stitched up the strap on my daughter’s sandal right before school.
3. I got a whole bunch of free ebooks and moved a bunch from the cloud to the device, so now my kids have some new reading material.
4. I used laundry rinse water to water some of my plants.
5. With our warmer weather, I’ve been taking cold showers and saving on the gas to heat water.


MommaL October 15, 2017 at 6:17 am

I came home from a friend’s house last night feeling discouraged. They are good people, very generous with their time and resources, and they have beautiful homes. She told me how she was going to redo her beautiful kitchen, and I think hers is beautiful already. I came home and looked at my old faucet that leaks a little, my old countertops, my trampled rug in the living room…you know what I mean.
So the next day, I:

1. Went out to my garden and picked cherry tomatoes.
2. Pulled up some flowers on my porch and planted lettuce seeds in the container. (from theseedguy, gmo free)
3. Cleaned out my closet, donated a couple of purses I no longer use, and sewed a button on a shirt to make it more modest.
4. Steam-ironed my work clothes so they’d look just as nice as if I’d bought them new.
5. Cleaned up my kitchen, found some things to donate, organized a drawer.

Then I chastised myself for feeling discontent. I live a pretty good life, we are healthy, and I don’t need granite and custom tiled back-splashes and anything brand new, and never will.


Mary W October 15, 2017 at 12:48 pm

Good for you! I think it’s easy to slip into dissatisfaction when we compare our situation with others with “nicer” things. When I find myself doing that, I remind myself that while my house is simple, it’s also paid for, while most of my friends in fancier homes are also in debt paying for their homes…and cars and remodeling projects, and trips and…

Usually, once I do that, I am plenty happy with my modest home, but it also inspires me to spruce up the flowerbeds or fix some little things around the house that I’ve been putting off. Envying others has a silver lining when it results in applying some sweat equity to my own home!

If that doesn’t snap me out of an envy funk, I consider how many people around the world would love to have all that I have. That humbles and shames me, and restores my spirit of gratefulness.


MommaL October 15, 2017 at 1:50 pm

Thank you Mary, yes I was not happy with myself that I let myself envy. I read today “Don’t let your ice cream melt while you’re eyeing someone else’s sprinkles”. I should make that into a sign. 🙂


KJD509 October 15, 2017 at 4:20 pm

It’s so hard when there’s a push to “newer” and “better” everywhere, isn’t it? Working with real estate agents makes me feel like I’m actually a different species. Who are these people who spend all their time fixing up houses instead of, you know, living in them?


Bee October 16, 2017 at 1:51 am

I love this. It is easy to get pulled in by the consumerism that surrounds us. It is not stuff, but love and gratitude that is the key to finding joy and solitude. I have always felt that one of the secrets to happiness is to want what you have.


Emily October 16, 2017 at 5:49 am

I went out on a friends boat yesterday with a few other people. Most of them were doctors and have beautiful homes on a lake, boats, nice cars, etc. my other half went back to school for engineering, and I am still paying off my school loans. I have a masters in science (I’m an SLP), and for some reason felt so badly about myself after leaving. Then I realized that they were all perfectly nice to me, and that those negative feelings were put on me by me. I came home and snuggled up on the couch with a book and watched hockey through my NHL app and broke the cycle of negative thoughts on my head. It is human nature to compare ourselves to others, you are just rare to admit it!


FrugalStrong October 17, 2017 at 9:05 am

Yes, Emily, THIS!!! It’s often not others making us feel badly, it’s our OWN internal dialogue. I wish more people took ownership of their feelings.


Sandy October 15, 2017 at 5:47 pm

MommaL I just had that very conversation with myself this morning! I was dissatisfied with my life today and I sat myself down and said “you don’t live in a war zone, a fire zone, or a hurricane zone. You haven’t been shot at or abused or neglected. You have a house that’s paid for, a car that’s paid for, and friends and family who love you. Snap out of it!”

I don’t say any of the above to brag in any way. It’s truly what I said to myself this morning when I was feeling sorry for myself about how life hasn’t turned out exactly as I thought it would. Guess what? I can’t see what I do have if I’m focusing on what I don’t.

So I gave myself a big Suck It Up Buttercup speech. It helped. And it stopped me from heading out the door to go do something to take my mind off of things — which usually entails buying something I don’t need.


Cindy in the South I October 16, 2017 at 7:12 am

I feel that way, when I see my colleagues with the huge homes, fancy cars, lavish vacations, and vacation homes, the ability to retire early, etc., But, then I remember my colleague and best friend ever, who died of breast cancer, and who fought so hard to live, and I feel ashamed of my envy. I remember her words of feeling joy in the every day, and I am trying to do that. It is normal, though, for all of us to be pea green with envy, so we do not need to be too hard on ourselves..


Denise October 16, 2017 at 2:10 pm

How about asking your friend for her faucets when she replaces them?


kathy October 15, 2017 at 9:42 am

1. Resisted getting a Subway tuna sandwich yesterday. Ate some trail mix instead.
2. Sending succulent clippings to a friend for his birthday. He loves to garden
3. Sent in for GLISS shampoo rebate. $4.99 coming my way
4. Clipped coupons that I’ll use and sent the remaining to an elderly friend
5. Drove car thru car wash for $7.00 vs $14.00 at the hand car wash. Will vacuum the inside myself and save $1.00


Jennifer October 15, 2017 at 9:51 am

1. I picked up my free Friday download from Kroger which was a bag of M&M’s. It was the perfect snack to take along with a few apples with my kids and I to the local bounce house.
2. I also picked up some Capri Suns at Kroger that were 99 cents per box with the digital coupon. I noticed that the register spit out an instant coupon for $2 off Capri Suns so I paid $3.31 for 5 boxes! My kids take these to school for snack almost daily so this is a great savings for me.
3. I painted part of my kitchen cabinets this morning. I am only doing a little at a time so I don’t become burnt out and overwhelmed. I have found that I get sloppy when I am fatigued. My friend is getting brand new cabinets installed in his house and I am excited to show him what just a little paint can do for even older cabinets. I spent extra time cleaning, sanding, etc. getting them prepared for the paint application and they do look nice .
4. We are grilling hamburgers today from the reduced meat I put up last week. Cheap lunch? Yes, please!
5. I went to the Dollar Tree and was unable to find the meatballs someone mentioned earlier, boo, but I did pick up some hormel pepperoni. I have been buying cheap frozen pizzas then doctoring them up with toppings such as cheese, bananas peppers, olives, etc. that I keep on hand. Makes them taste like a really good pizza and helps us avoid takeout. I also got the usual shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, etc.. I noticed that VO5 shampoo I usually buy has a few less ounces than Katy’s fav, White Rain. So I switched to that brand instead.


yvette from down under October 15, 2017 at 10:38 am

Australia has a great many retirees that do voluntary community work and reap benefits like meeting new people, helping others, being involved in things outside of the home, free entry into community events.
1 volunteered at local agricultural show instead of paying entrance fee
2 used coupons for free drinks at local pub and main meal was paid for by my brother
3 made pear and rhubarb crumble for dessert instead of buying dessert whilst out
4 used up left over pork meatballs in a stirfry with vege from the garden
5 gave away jars of jam that had been entered into agricultural show for judging to avoid eating it all myself.


Monica October 16, 2017 at 9:23 am

Love to read the posts from those of you in Australia! So interesting.


Denise October 16, 2017 at 2:13 pm

Isn’t the point of home-made jam that you get to eat it all yourself?!


A. Marie October 15, 2017 at 10:39 am

FFT resulting from an Oh @#$%!! Frugal Fail:

Just as my knees were finally almost back to normal, what did I do Friday evening but go chasing our “Mooch family” of deer away from my veggie garden in the back 40, for the umpteenth time this summer–only to trip over a rough patch of ground and sprain both ankles. I wish I were making this up. However:

(1) DH heard my screams, assisted my sobbing-in-fury self into the house, and summoned Mr. Bestest Neighbor. He has been the best of nurses ever since. Excellent husband = priceless.

(2) Mr. BN is actually retired Dr. BN (a former NY State Family Physician of the Year, no less). He checked me out, opined that I hadn’t broken anything, and bandaged me up–but recommended that I go to our local orthopedic evening/weekend clinic the next morning for x-rays anyway. Both BNs = priceless.

(3) X-rays confirmed no broken bones, and the clinic doc confirmed Dr. BN’s opinion that these are relatively mild sprains. So I still wish I hadn’t done it, but things could be a lot worse. Not having broken bones/torn ligaments = priceless.

(4) Other neighbors have been helping out/extending offers of help as well: food, laundry, and helping the navigationally challenged DH run errands. A good network of neighbors = priceless (especially for folks like DH and me, who are childless and have no close relatives near).

(5) Finally, I’m rather enjoying my license to be nonproductive this weekend–catching up on books/magazines, watching the breeze move through our changing trees on an unseasonably warm fall afternoon, etc. But I still managed to chop up some late bell peppers (sitting down, of course!) and spread them on a cookie sheet for freezing.


Mary W October 15, 2017 at 12:54 pm

Oh, dear! So glad to hear nothing was broken and the sprains are not severe. You really do have bestest neighbors… nearly as wonderful as mine! Even more wonderful is the community you’ve built around you. I bet they also consider YOU ” bestest neighbors”!


VanessaKC October 15, 2017 at 7:49 pm

The double ankle sprain is dreadful! Happened to me on Labor Day. There are many great PT exercises online for free. Really helped me to get going sooner. Hope you heal quickly!


Susie's Daughter October 16, 2017 at 5:15 am

A. Marie – that is what we in New England would call a ‘wicked pissah’ indeed! Here’s to speedy healing. And in the ‘it’s a small world’ category, I am betting that my semi retired Dr. FIL, who is a long time family doc an hour or so south of you, probably knows your retired Dr. BN. 🙂


A. Marie October 16, 2017 at 12:53 pm

Thanks to all for the sympathy notes, and I will certainly check out those exercises, Vanessa. And, Susie’s D, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if your FIL knows my Dr. BN, who is something of a celebrity in our sector of Upstate. We can’t go anywhere with him without having at least one person recognize him and say, “Hey, Dr. BN! You delivered me/my child/my nephew/etc.!”


tia October 15, 2017 at 11:15 am

1. Picked some of my “random seed growing out of compost pile” tomatoes today and they are delicious. I have about thirty more at different stages and a few new blossoms too. I put the vines on a step ladder so they are off the ground and find more sunlight.
2.I cut all the old blossoms off my mum and switched a new plant in a different color in the ceramic planter and planted my old mum plant in my magic compost pile.
3.I’ve been buying nike and gap workout gear at goodwill when I run across some under 4 bucks, it was cool today so I tried them out. perfect for cool days.
4.I was standing by my coworker as she gave a presentation and the man asked if I was her security detail. Next time I’m at goodwill I need to find a few colorful things to add to my business wardrobe! ha!
5.My cheap entertainment lately has been to take a fuzzy blanket to the couch and see how many warm purring fuzzy kitties I can attract?


Mary W October 15, 2017 at 1:02 pm

Re #4: haha, you could take apart a non-functional set of earbuds, add a curly cable (like from a pen and pad set) to one of the earbuds running from your ear to the back of your collar, dress in a black suit and wear dark glasses. You’d look like a secret service agent!

I like your #5, too.


Mrs Stookey October 15, 2017 at 11:28 am

my fft
1) Made pumpkin muffins today to heat up the apartment and have one more warm breakfast option in my repitore and to use up an open can of pumpkin puree.
2) found a nickel today on our walk in this wonderful fall weather of 56 degrees
3) got a free loaf of bread and a free box of chocolates from the community table in our apartment community
4) have my husband trained lol to now put on blankets when he is cold instead of turning on the furnance, this has taken me 14 years to do people and I’m thrilled!!
5) I’m washing two yellowed pillows to restore them and save for when we have over night guest which is usually my mom.


Denise October 16, 2017 at 2:20 pm

In England, we are having seriously odd weather. 72 degrees at the weekend and today, plus our first hurricane in thirty years (to the day!!). Light went peculiar in London this afternoon. Meteorologists are saying it’s sand from the Sahara Desert and smoke from fires in California.

And who said global warming’s a lie?


cathy October 16, 2017 at 3:37 pm

My husband and I were just watching the news. They were talking about Storm Ophelia heading for Scotland and still being tropical. We looked at each other and said “No, there’s no such thing as climate change!” Yeah right.


Shevaun October 15, 2017 at 12:04 pm

1. DD1’s Sweet Sixteen is this week, and her present is an enormous basket filled with kitchen things to stock her future apartment (a pasta pot, colander, saute pan, dishes, silverware, etc., etc.). Thrifted with a few retail items, total = $100. Just for giggles I did an online search for all the same items retail at Target = $998.
2. In keeping with #1, future gifts will be baskets of linens, cleaning supplies, a freshly typed copy of our family cook book with pantry groceries, and other setting up house things. I’m set for like two years of holiday gift ideas.
3. In a desperate attempt to keep almost-3-year-old DD2 quiet during DS’s nap, we discovered that DD2 likes to listen to audiobooks, downloaded for free from our library. Thank you, Buffalo and Erie County Public Library for keeping my baby asleep for an extra hour.
4. My church supports a Family Justice Center, and they need diapers and other baby supplies for moms escaping domestic violence situations. So DH and I are stocking their closet with Aldi diapers in every size N-6. I love Aldi diapers for my own kids, and they are by far the best price, so this is the best way to stretch a buck. Ubi caritas et amor, Deus ibi est.
5. Still struggling with whether to wean now-1-year-old DS. He loves nursing, and I loving snuggling him… but I would maybe like my body back a little after 4 years of sharing myself constantly (2 pregnancies, 2 nursing babies). If we keep nursing, I desperately need new nursing clothes; if we stop, I need new normal-people clothes. I. Hate. Shopping. So, my #5 is not a frugal thing, but rather a frugal dilemma. My husband says I’d still be lovely in a paper sack (awww…), but I suspect the neighbors might be concerned.


Bee October 16, 2017 at 2:01 am

Your fourth frugal thing led me to the Ubi Caritas which I read in its entirety. Thank you for this. It was a beautiful way to start my day.


Shevaun October 16, 2017 at 4:27 am

I often sing Taize just as I go about my daily chores, and I sometimes will alternate the Latin and English (nothing makes scrubbing toilets and folding laundry fun like a little off-the-cuff Latin). Yesterday, I checked on DD2 with the baby monitor and got to eavesdrop on her singing to her babydolls: Live in charity and steadfast love, live in charity and God will be with you.
Most of the time I feel like I major in fail in the mom department, but this made me happy.


Susie's Daughter October 16, 2017 at 5:21 am

I have sung Taize for years in the car (my Subaru sanctuary 🙂 ). Now I have the lovely version of “Ubi Caritas” in my head…


Roberta October 16, 2017 at 5:58 am

Thank you for the Ubi Caritas. I just read it, and I will be listening to it later today.

On the nursing front, could you transition to just nursing before bedtime/naptime. Then you could enjoy the snuggling, and only have to buy clothes one time — new “normal people clothes.” I know it’s a personal decision, but that’s what I did to transition, and it worked for us.


Vickey November 1, 2017 at 8:05 am

Normal-nursing clothes: knit shirt (t-shirt, etc.) w/vest. It’s easy to pull the shirt up for nursing (more modest, actually), and the vest covers the side.

I love your “singing while cleaning” approach. 😀 And we love the Buf/E.C. library, too!


Mand01 October 15, 2017 at 12:14 pm

1. Planted up our Summer vegetable garden. Discovered that I have a tendency to buy bean seeds every year! I’ll offer some to my neighbor and my mother and put some on the GrowFree cart. Whoops! But our garden this year will be huge and if all works out I’m not expecting to buy vegetables this summer.
2. Every meal this week has included at least one vegetable we have grown ourselves.
3. We spent almost the entire weekend outside, being active and healthy doing free activities around our yard. I love Spring.
4. We watched our adorable niece and nephew while their parents had some time together and then our kids spent the afternoon there learning to sew with their Aunty. Free fun all round.
5. In the evenings our entertainment was free DVDs and some graphic novels from the library and rewatching Stranger Things on Netflix.


Lindsey October 15, 2017 at 1:16 pm

1. Made six pumpkin cheesecakes to be auctioned off for a fund raiser for a small non-profit; got a tax write-off so that was nice. I went to the event and came home with enough leftover carrot, celery and jicama sticks to make a huge pot of vegetable soup.
2. I am opening a box a week of the ones that have been sitting in the backroom since we moved into this house FIVE years ago! This week I unearthed many, many pairs of socks and underpants, most of them never worn. No need to shop for those items for at least a few years.
3. I grew so many cukes this summer that I could not process all of them for pickles. Read on another blog about freezing the extras in slices and then using them in fruit breakfast smoothies, so I froze over two dozen baggies full. This week for the first time I used some and it was great. Had some fresh fruit that needed to be used up and the frozen cukes thickened up the smoothie but you could not taste them.
4. Took several bags of books to the non-profit used bookstore. Cleared out house a bit and got a tax write-off.
5. Sent a polite complaint letter to a company after their package arrived with a broken item inside—even though the outside of the box had no marks of being bashed or mishandled. The company responded very quickly, refunded my money AND sent me a replacement.


Mary W October 15, 2017 at 1:59 pm

Like A. Marie, my FFTs often involve my own wonderful “bestest neighbors”. I really believe that building community is one of the best things I can do to improve my life, and hopefully, theirs, too. It’s almost always frugal, too, as it involves sharing what we already have, whether it’s a skill, equipment or just an extra set of hands. So, most of my FFTs today are neighbor related.

1. I rode to karaoke at the Eagles Friday night with one set of wonderful neighbors. Since we’re going to be at the same place, it’s silly to drive separately. My older (but paid for!) truck gets lousy gas mileage, so riding with them also saves money. About every other time, I stand a round of drinks for the couple or split a burger and tater tots with the wife and pay for it, and it’s still less than I’d pay in gas. Friday night, I did both. We had a lot of fun singing, dancing and laughing with an extended group of friends there, and it only cost me about $15 for the whole evening.

2. Yesterday, I played Bunco with the wives of both my favorite neighbor couples. Didn’t win a prize this time, but had much fun! One of my neighbor couples made lunch for afters, chili and cornbread. I’m not a fan of bean-based cuisine, so I skipped the chili, but the cornbread was super yummy! Also took home another bag of grapes that no one else wanted.

3. Came home and got several hours of free exercise working outside in the sunshine. It’s supposed to start raining in a few days, so I’m trying to fit in as much outside work as I can while it’s still dry.

4. Spent the evening processing grapes into juice with the same neighbor couple that made lunch. Neighbor husband made us dinner, too – delicious grilled cheese, bacon and tomato sammies on yummy multi-grain bread. Crispy bacon and home-grown, vine ripened tomatoes…these were no ordinary grilled cheese sandwiches! We used my steam juicer and their kitchen to process the grapes. We got started pretty late, so I left the juicer there for them to use today and took home 4 half-gallon canning jars of yummy Concord grape juice (left a couple empty jars for what was left in the juicer, but I was tired and could tell the neighbor wife was, too, so we left the neighbor husband to finish the juicing and called it a night). I still have more grapes at home to work on, but I think I’m going to pick through them this evening and freeze them until I have time to process them. Freezing them should make juicing go faster anyway.

5. The husband of the other neighbor couple had also been visiting our neighbors when I got there. We were talking about neighborhood issues and it morphed into talking about home repairs and not electrocuting ourselves doing them. I laughed and said my daughter had been teasing me about procrastinating on putting up the lights I bought ages ago. I can install them, but can never quite get over the fear that the wires might still be live and I might get zapped! Visiting neighbor husband offered to come over and help me get them installed. My plan is to do the actual wiring with him checking for live circuits and talking me through it. I have several lights to switch out and a faulty light switch to replace.

6. Bonus. Everyone is ready for one of our game nights, since we haven’t had one all summer. I’m thinking that Friday night at my house sounds good. I’ll check and make sure that night works for everyone. We all bring potluck dishes and it’s BYOB if anyone wants something stronger than water or iced tea. Mexican dominoes for the entertainment, and just good, frugal fun.

7. Same neighbors also brought me 1000 lbs of organic, locally sourced chicken feed and helped me unload it and scoop it into barrels. It comes in a gigantic bag that holds all 1000 lbs that is refilled each time I buy feed and is half the price of buying sacks of feed at the feed store. They were going for feed for their own animals, so they wouldn’t take gas money. I’ll find a way to repay their kindness. 🙂


A. Marie October 16, 2017 at 1:02 pm

Loud cheers for your BNs, Mary! We can’t have too many of them–and you’ve given me at least one idea with your #6 for our beastly Upstate NY winters. I was thinking of organizing a soup potluck for Feb. 2018, but combining it with a games night should really make it zing.


Denise October 16, 2017 at 2:33 pm

I am very envious of your lovely neighbours. My newish downstairs neighbours have just tried to rip me off, after I have helped with gardening, driving them to the local council rubbish tip, taking them grocery shopping (they don’t have a car) and helped their son improve his CV for a job application.

It’s good to be reminded that most people are decent. When the building work is finished and I move back in to my flat, my two neighbours can go whistle.


Mary Beth Danielson October 15, 2017 at 2:10 pm

My birthday is tomorrow – I will be 65 and this weekend is, with absolutely no planning on my part, becoming one of the best birthdays of my life. Back story – my dad, sister, and brother all died young so just getting this far doesn’t feel like getting old so much as pure luck and blessing.
1. Son and his fiancee called yesterday. We met them between their town and ours – and they paid for our burgers and beers. Kids paying for us now? How cool is that?
2. Meeting daughters and grandbaby between their city and here tomorrow. The baby is 10 months old and she recognizes me on face-time. Can’t wait to see her in real time.
3. Went for an hour bike ride by myself this afternoon. I’m healthy and the bike path along the river was beautiful.
4. When I got home, the beet cupcakes my husband made for me were out of the oven. The first one was delicious. About 30 to go….
5. Dinner tonight is black bean soup made with all sort of frozen good stuff from our little freezer. Will eat it with rice. I guess this is not spectacular, but I love it and the guy I’m eating it with.
6. You are selling an Danielsson Marimekko today! In my honor?


Betty Winslow October 15, 2017 at 2:36 pm

Major frugal fail – parked in the wrong spot for a downtown show and when I came out at 1 am to go home, my car had been towed. $108 lesson…..

frugal wins:
1. Free lunch today (pizza, donuts, cider, fruit, cookies) at the annual CROP Hunger Walk – raised $1,194.94, in honor of my late daughter, Lisa, ,mostly from her shipmates at US Naval Academy, Class of 94 (hence the odd number). A fourth of what we raise stays here in town to help local needs, the rest goes to various international hunger programs. And when I left, they gave me pizza, a donut, a cookie, and cider to take home for Mark, who had already eaten, so I’ll keep them for Tuesday’s lunch!
2. Enjoying flowers (Alstroemerias) from Kroger – marked down to $1.99 and still lovely. Also picked up my freebie M&Ms!
3. Tonight’s dinner includes a salad made with romaine, the last of the farmer’s market tomatoes, the end of a bag of shredded cheese, a couple of chopped up raw veggies left from a veggie tray, and a stray boiled egg. The baked potatoes will be topped with the rest of the sour cream dip from the tray.
4. Picked up a stack of free cooking magazines at a recent garage sale. I love to read cookbooks and cooking magazines, but don’t need to buy any more, I have waaaay too many already, so when I’m done perusing these, I’m giving them to friends.
5. A not so frugal move this morning at church – bought a small box of chocolate-covered almonds for $2 from our school’s chocolate sale. Didn’t really need (although they’re yummy), but it’ll help pay for a single mom’s before school care for her kids. Frugality allows us to spend our money on things that are important, as well as things that are inexpensive.


Susie's Daughter October 16, 2017 at 5:25 am

#1) What a lovely way to honor your daughter. Very moving.


Cindy in the South I October 16, 2017 at 5:59 am

Wow…a graduate of the Naval Academy…that is awesome! I am so glad you were able to raise the money in her memory.


A. Marie October 16, 2017 at 12:56 pm

Hats off and “Anchors Aweigh” for your daughter, Betty. What a wonderful tribute to her!


Ruby October 15, 2017 at 2:55 pm

1. My son’s leather wallet needed some TLC. I used some Old English dark scratch cover for furniture to refinish it, then polished it with neutral shoe polish and used some gifted brown silk buttonhole thread to resew an edge. He was impressed!
2. Made a jazzed up marinara sauce tonight with frozen green peppers, the last of a cut yellow onion from the fridge, and some black olives and mushrooms. Also used up a frozen chunk of tomato paste in the sauce. Love a meal that uses up the last bits and pieces.
3. Son did all our laundry today. I found the empty detergent jug turned upside down to drain the last bit out. I have raised him well.
4. Needed some office supplies for new job. Could have gotten them at an office supply store for big bucks, but went to Dollar Tree and a clearance store and spent itty bitty bucks.
5. Got a free flu shot last weekend at the pharmacy. The pharmacist gave me two $5 off coupons, which I am hanging onto until the next time nuts and canned soups – good for a desk drawer work lunch – go on sale.


Bee October 15, 2017 at 3:50 pm

1) I worked my side hustle yesterday and earned a little money to go into savings. I brought a snack and water with me. I did not go through the Starbuck’s drive-thru on the way there or on the way home.

2) I relisted a fewer items on eBay at a lower price that had not previously sold. I photographed a dozen new items which I have been listing this afternoon. One item sold within 20 minutes of listing it. That makes me happy — and more money for savings.

3) I went to an estate sale Friday in the last 15 minutes or so. They told me that I could have anything I wanted in the kitchen for free. I picked up a ladle, a wonderful deep-dish pie plate, a quart measuring cup,and a large Pyrex baking dish. If I can acquire a Pyrex baking dish for less than $1, I do. They come in handy for cover dish events or when I bring food to a friend. I don’t worry about getting them back. They cost the same as a foil pan and reusable, of course.

4) I watch a two-part British mystery on YouTube based on a novel by PD James, “Death in Holy Orders.” Although it may be too slow moving for some, I love this kind of mystery. I love quality television especiAlly when it’s free.

5) I am finishing up a facelift on the hall bath. (As Roberta says de-uglifying) It was just gross. We have done most of the work ourselves, but my husband always hires an electrician. So he will come on Tuesday to put in can lights over the vanity. We picked out the LED version of these lights. They are supposed to last 20 years — less garbage created. They are also more energy efficient. This is a huge cost savings over time. In fact, I calculate that each will save at least $10 a year. Not a lot, but every little bit helps.


Lindsey October 15, 2017 at 5:29 pm

I wish I could convince my handy husband to hire electricians for that sort of work. He is very color blind and I have to stand there the entire time, making sure he is not twisting together green and red wires or gray and purple wires. I keep telling him an electrician is cheaper than the funeral will be when he electrocutes himself, but the words fall on deaf ears.


Bee October 16, 2017 at 2:22 am

My husband stuck a screwdriver in an electrical outlet when he was a child, so he is terrified of electricity. He will paint, plumb, do carpentry work, tile, etc. However, he will never, ever do even the simplest electrical work.


Jennifer October 15, 2017 at 4:06 pm

1. Stayed home Friday and Saturday and baked and cooked extra and didn’t spend money.
2. Visited my college son and took him 3 bags of groceries and a cooler of food I had been accumulating at super sale prices.
3. Dh and I had saved our Starbucks rewards so that we had 2 free drinks. We took my son out for venti frappuccinos for free. Dh drank a tall coffee.
4. We celebrated 2 of our children’s birthdays this past week. For ds he got a Lego set, t-shirt and wireless ear buds for less than $50. For dd she got the top of her ear pierced and a clearance shirt bought on tax-free weekend – for a total of $37.
5. Our gymnastics meet schedule was changed for the better! The meet in KY was dropped completely and another weekend that had my girls competing at the same time in different states has been changed so they are going to the same meet and it is less than 2 hours away. Woo-hoo!


Lee October 15, 2017 at 4:13 pm

1) I ate lunch Monday-Friday at work for free
2) I also got two free dinners through work
3) I shopped at Aldi and used a $10 off coupon (minimum purchase $40). I hadn’t been to Aldi for a while so I stocked up on pantry staples. They also had flavoring extracts on sale (lemon, peppermint and almond) so I got those in anticipation of holiday baking.
4) I donated some items to Goodwill and managed not to go in
5) I donated dog food to my local pet shelter. They use the Costco brand so I get cash back on my purchase two ways, through my Costco membership and through my Costco credit card.
Bonus: it was Customer Appreciation Day at Sprouts yesterday and everyone got 10% off their purchases all day long.


Teddie October 15, 2017 at 4:28 pm

1. Finally got an appointment with a new oncologist to get my mammogram done. We recently moved here and that took a while. I am over 2 months overdue for my 6 month mammo which is very important bc I am a breast cancer survivor. Staying healthy is frugal.
2. 13 year old grandson and I cleaned and organized our laundry room/pantry. I had really just stuck things in there when we moved in to get it all out of the way. Frugal save I found the basil pesto and bread machine yeast I knew I had, but could not find.
3. Had to go to WM to pick up milk, eggs, and apples. Used my Walmart Saving Catcher e-card and only had to pay $0.24 OOP. Gee do I miss my Aldi.
4.Used a leftover green bell pepper, small onion, and some small red potatoes to make breakfast egg burritos for lunch. DH and GS raved about how good it was.
5. Took 3 bananas that were looking sad and made banana bread. GS was disappointed as he thought I was baking cookies. So I made some chocolate oatmeal stove top cookies and chocolate cake mix cookies and everyone was happy.


Ava October 15, 2017 at 4:32 pm

1. Put off getting a haircut for a shameful length of time but I can’t put it off any longer. I will be going this week. This is not a fail. It must be done.
2. Brought home leftovers from last night’s dinner out with kids. There was some mild kidding that I was collecting the leftovers they weren’t going to take home. Made refried bean chimichangas with the beans and tortillas for lunch today and sent them a picture.
3. Made absolutely fantastic tortellini soup from ingredients I had in the house. The tortellini had been languishing in the freezer for a while because we didn’t care for it when we tried it with sauce. It was wonderful in the soup.
4. Ordered some items I need by going through Swagbucks and stayed out of the store and so avoided other purchases.
5. Taking the kitten to get fixed this week. No extra kittens in the world is frugal for everybody.


Jen October 16, 2017 at 3:37 pm

Fixing the kitten should win best comment!

Jen (crazy cat lady with too many feral rescues)


FrugalStrong October 15, 2017 at 6:36 pm

After months of reading through the blogs, I have FINALLY finished and am ready to comment on my first FFT. Hooray!

1. Sold an item on Craigslist Friday. It was a sculpture of a bear my husband received as a gift a few years ago (why, I don’t know!), so I ecstatic to find a buyer and make $30.

2. A friend invited me to lunch for my upcoming birthday, so I chose a restaurant where I had a BOGO birthday coupon and we both ordered water, so she just had to pay for her meal instead of both meals.

3. Scored 3 free donuts at Krispy Kreme (bday freebie & Halloween donuts giveaway) . Brought 2 cute spider donuts home for the kids and split my bday selection with my husband. Followed that up with a trip to Victoria’s Secret where I scored a free pair of undies of my choice simply for trying on a bra (didn’t buy anything but did sign up for their club so hopefully I’ll receive a bday coupon because I do need another bra – I only have one for every day).

4. Batched errands yesterday. Dropped off old paint, batteries, & bulbs to the mobile crud cruiser, donated 2 bags of stuffed animals to a local church, then took my kids to the science museum. We have a membership so parking and entry were free. A local radio station was there and my kids both won 4 tickets to an Omni movie showing, a coupon for free pop, and a Curious George book. This will give us 2 free outings for our family of 4. I’m going to save them for Thanksgiving break. There were a few other items included (key chain, sticker) that I knew we wouldn’t use, so rather than toss them, I gave them back to the employee to use for a future event.

Where left the museum, I took them to a free showing of “Hotel Transylvania” at the downtown location of our city library. I packed them popcorn and lemonade leftover from my AMC birthday freebie (no movie ticket required, I just walked in last week and got my free large popcorn and drink!).

5. We recently had the interior and exterior of our home painted (not frugal, but planned, and paid for in cash). I’ve been using it as opportunity to purge and change things up after 10 years. I’ve gotten almost everything used off FB. Yesterday, I put a new to us curtain rod, curtains, & rug in my daughter’s room and it looks awesome. Today I hung a new to us shower curtain in the kids’ bathroom. In doing so, I noticed that several holes of our existing clear plastic liner had ripped. So, I used scotch tape to secure them rather than toss it.

6. Resisted the urge to buy donuts in the parish hall after Mass. The kids have religious education class for 1.25 hrs after Mass, so I kill time reading in the lobby of the fancy hotel across the street. I stayed out of the Starbucks and instead enjoyed the free fruit water they have set out in dispensers and grabbed a couple of apples also set out to take home.


FrugalStrong October 15, 2017 at 6:39 pm

*coupon for free popcorn, not pop


Jennifer October 16, 2017 at 4:34 am

I love the name FrugalStrong! Looks like you got a lot of freebies. So glad you commented. I was a lurker for a long time before I was brave enough to comment, lol. I learn a lot from this blog just by commenting. People here always have good solutions to many issues.


FrugalStrong October 17, 2017 at 9:41 am

Thanks, Jennifer. I started with the very first post and finally read through them all. I feel so accomplished!
FrugalStrong is my Instagram name. I use that account solely for my two passions/hobbies: frugality and fitness. But, I also like to think I’m constantly strengthening and flexing my frugal muscles!


VanessaKC October 15, 2017 at 7:27 pm

1. The Yellow Submarine (a 72 VW camper van my dad and I are restoring) is very close to paint. We’ve got many interested potential buyers. Not only would it be a nice payday, but we’re also keeping a classic on the road. It’s not rotting in the woods anymore.

2. Been eating down the pantry for over a week. Boring but necessary.

3. Learned a ton about canning from my awesome aunt.

4. Awesome aunt also sent me home with 3lbs of smoked pulledpork, baked beans and lemon bars. Her food makes me feel like I’m eating my grandma’s cookin’ as a child. Can’t put a price on that.

5. Planted kale and turnip seeds bought on clearance last week and now have many sprouts! They’re in protected areas that are easily covered should the weather get crazy. My spring greens rocked while my summer greens blew. Hope to get a decent late fall harvest to compensate for a crummy summer.


Kim in Maryland October 15, 2017 at 7:32 pm

1. Sold a book on Amazon for $48.
2. Did 7 merchandising jobs. College fund!
3. Picked up my Harris Teeter weekend freebies- bag of peanut butter m&ms, box of Annie’s organic mac & cheese and a protein bar. Didn’t buy anything else.
4. Lowe’s had cell packs of pansies marked down to 50¢. Picked up 10 packs for my front planters and window boxes. The great thing is they will come back in the spring so $5 for 2 seasons of happy color is a bargain.
5. Our church does a twice a year clothing and household giveaway; it’s in it’s 29th year. We set up on Friday night and bring all our donations. After setup all of us who work get to “shop.” I was looking for some bath towels, a fitted queen sheet, jeans for my scarecrow and a bathmat. I got 5 nice towels, a fun vintage queen size sheet set, and jeans, shirt and bandana for my scarecrow. The best thing I got was a wonderful 1930’s wedding ring quilt! I also got some beautiful baby clothes for a young single mom that I’m getting to know.


Mrs. Picky Pincher October 16, 2017 at 4:19 am

Hey, extra work means extra money. 🙂

This week:

1. I’ve been wanting a light box to take better pictures, but didn’t want to pay $50+. Instead, I made a DIY lightbox for $17 (had to buy 2 lamps) and it works beautifully.

2. My husband made breakfast yesterday and had 4 leftover egg whites. I used the egg whites to whip up some chocolate mint macarons as a sweet treat.

3. I’ve been picking up a lot of freelance work lately. It’s good, but I’ve been so pressed for time between work and life that I’ve had to turn down work. I still made about $150 in the past week, though. Not bad for doing something you love in your spare time. 🙂

4. Hubby also planted our fall garden seedlings, so hopefully they’ll recover from transplant shock and start growin’.

5. Mr. Picky Pincher ordered a book on origami and has been making gorgeous origami to decorate the house. He made them from paper we already had on hand, and he absolutely loves it. 🙂


Cindy in the South I October 16, 2017 at 4:52 am

1. I cleaned out a closet, which led to starting to clean out my 912 sq ft house. 11 trash bags later and a trunk full of donations headed for first work, to see if anyone I work with wants it, and then to the Salvation Army for whatever is left. My back hurts, my eyes hurt, I hurt all over. Yea, I have one thing…fall cleaning.


Susie's Daughter October 16, 2017 at 5:32 am

Cindy – WOW! Go you!


Roberta October 16, 2017 at 6:11 am

Wow, 11 bags in 925 sq. ft! You did an amazing job decluttering!


ouvickie October 16, 2017 at 7:16 am

That’s awesome! You rock and I need the inspiration to keep me motivated!!


Cindy in the South I October 16, 2017 at 7:41 am

Thank y’all but the sad thing is that I am not done. In my defense, I have my mother’s things, and my uncle’s things. When their houses sold, I was stuck with the leftovers. so…my previously minimal lifestyle house looked like a hoarder’s den…lol.


Vickey November 2, 2017 at 8:05 am

Sounds like you’re getting your Minimalist Mojo back! 😉


K D October 16, 2017 at 5:32 am

1. We ate meals at home all last week and this weekend. Yesterday I made pumpkin pie filling. That’s one way to go gluten free.

2. The grocery store nearest my house had weekend specials. I happened to stop there a couple of days and stocked up on cheap oatmeal and tote bag apples. I also was able to score avocados for $1/apiece at COSTCO.

3. I am spending the cooler weather reading ebooks borrowed from the library while knitting hats for a charity knitting project.

4. We were near Target so I stopped and bought a couple of Netflix gift cards. That netted me a $5 Target gift card and by using my Discover card I should receive 5% cash back on the purchase.

5. I’m wearing clothes and shoes from previous years, some of them hand me ups. By maintaining the same size, the change in the weather is not a problem, wardrobe wise. I keep moving, have quite a bit of muscle, and try to include lots of healthy foods in my food intake.


Susie's Daughter October 16, 2017 at 5:51 am

1) Monday is usually cooking day in my house. Today I will make spaghetti sauce from Dear Wife’s tomatoes, chili with leftover taco meat that was both too spicy and too salty (my errors) and turkey soup from leftover bones.

2) Turkey bones from #1 came from a community library benefit turkey dinner on Saturday night. My parents treated my family and my aunt and uncle so it was a family date. As we were getting ready to go, my BFF’s mom, who helped with the dinner, asked if I would take turkey bones which were otherwise going in the trash. Yes!

3) DS wore hand me down pants and a consignment shirt to school today and looked great.

4) I figured out how to download PBS and PBS Kids stations to our Roku so now we can stream my faves through PBS Passport (Poldark!)and DS can watch his shows at off times on the TV, rather than my computer. Tech savvy I am not, so I consider this an accomplishment!

5) My beloved aunt died last spring on the West Coast and my house was the designated delivery spot for the East Coast distribution of household and personal stuff. My friend helped me work on boxes last week – progress. We also inherited her beautiful old wooden trunk that had been in the cellar for a long time. I have been airing it out when it is sunny and using crumpled up newspaper inside – a trick I learned on FFT I am quite sure. Mildewy smell is almost gone.


Alison October 16, 2017 at 5:52 am

1. We hosted relatives two different times in the past few days, providing home-cooked meals, etc. My mother-in-law urged me to “just get take out” and “just use paper plates” but I realized afterward that this was due to her not wanting to feel like she was putting us out by requiring me to cook and clean up afterward. I assured her that we enjoyed cooking (we do and especially for my in-laws who have done so much for us over the years) and that it’s no trouble to clean up because the kids all help too.
2. I’ve gotten rid of things that I don’t need through two groups on Facebook: my local ‘Buy Nothing’ group and my local ‘Garage’ group. I never really had much luck on eBay and my local ‘Nextdoor’ group hasn’t really taken off, but in my area everyone lives on Facebook.
3. I wear my leather sandals all day (I work from home so don’t need to be quite as fashion-conscious, but I am conscious and appreciative of the supportive soles), but they had gotten too loose. I punched another hole in the buckle, and voila, they fit perfectly again.
4. The racks in our dishwasher are wearing out – they are getting rusty under the plastic coating and breaking in some areas. I searched for DIY solutions on the Non-Consumer Advocate Facebook page and ended up using fishing line to weave some extra support in the silverware basket so the forks, spoons, etc don’t keep falling through the basket. I also bought some electrical duct tape and wrapped it around a rusty, wobbly rack area. The fishing line solution worked great. The tape not so great.
5. I’ve been getting a little down about non-consuming (mostly the part about not buying any new clothes & spending on travel), but this month will be the last payment for a big loan we took out two years ago and reaching that milestone is REALLY encouraging. I feel like the effort is paying off (literally) and it’s worth it. Now to tackle the next mountain of debt.


ouvickie October 16, 2017 at 7:13 am

#4 – You might see if Home Depot or Lowe’s has some spray on type rubber/plastic coating for your rusty racks. Also, I noticed a Second hand appliance store in the town where I work sells the cannibalized baskets and shelving, etc. from used appliances. You might be able to replace what you have for pretty cheap – if you have a store like that near you.
#5 Congratulations on paying off that loan! There’s nothing more rewarding than paying off debts!


Alison October 17, 2017 at 9:50 am

Thank you!


FrugalStrong October 17, 2017 at 9:50 am

Your #5 – congratulations! Hang in there. The sacrifice is worth it.


ouvickie October 16, 2017 at 6:45 am

1) I bought ground chuck on sale, Saturday, at the grocers to make a pot of chili for last nights dinner. The leftovers will provide at least two more meals.
2) I used a bag of pulled chicken meat, from the freezer, to make chicken nachos for Saturday evening’s dinner, along with homemade guac.
3) I love our University’s Red River Rivalry game, but I prefer to watch it from home instead going to Dallas and spending a fortune. I bought a 6 pack of Tecate, drank a beer and ate homemade nachos. We won, I was full and happy. Mission accomplished.
4) Late Sunday afternoon I attended a reception for one of my work Team mates and his new wife. They were married in Vegas over the Summer, so their parents put together a home reception. Great food and beverages and I finally met his wife – such a sweet and lovely couple. Great fun.
5) This morning I picked up creamer, a box of oatmeal and some blueberries for my breakfast stash here at work.
6) I’m almost finished with the 2nd book in Gail Fraser’s Lumby series, so I picked up the next 3 at the Library yesterday. I love reading in the evenings, instead of watching TV.


Bethany M October 16, 2017 at 8:07 am

We ate a free lunch and snacks at husbands work this weekend. They had a family fun day and got three food trucks out there for us to pick from.

Won a raffle at the Family Fun Day for a $10 Starbucks card. I’m saving this for either our cross-country drive or to save us on a gift down the road.

I ordered a bunch of things from Zulily more than a month ago. I really bought too much….Frugal fail. One of the items still hadn’t arrived, so I canceled it and received a refund. They also have credited my account with $10, which might come in handy down the road.

I’m still using my regular old crock pot and haven’t spent out for an instapot like all my dear friends. We’re still eating, nonetheless.

Kids have been helping me source pink quarts from our fields. They are gorgeous and slowly we are landscaping our flower beds for free. Side benefits are free exercise and free treasure hunting activity for the kids.


Amanda October 16, 2017 at 8:18 am

1) I put a really good effort into getting at least a little of our son’s $1K dental bill covered by our dental insurance (“we cover this filling, but not this filling, blah blah blah”). Next time I need to push harder on the dentist to provide services that are actually covered. Our kids also don’t drink soda or eat a lot of candy and treats. But in the end I paid $1K. You win some, you lose some.

2) My husband won fourth place in a Brunswick stew cooking competition this weekend, which comes with a $200 prize! The cash is going to our “Aaron fun fund.” We set up this account early in our marriage. The premise was that I actively do not like spending money, but my husband does. He’s actually pretty frugal too, but it makes him feel good to have a couple hundred bucks tucked away that is outside of my eagle eyes on our finances. He basically uses it to buy me presents, so I am more than cool with this underground financial arrangment.

3) We also made a little profit off of sales of the stew at the competition. That cash will go into savings.

4) Yesterday we planned meals for the week and grocery shopped at Aldi. We ate out of the fridge and pantry. And we packed lunches for everyone.

5) I spent some time last night getting organized for the week. I am spending Wednesday to Friday in Boston at a conference, which means that my husband is on his own for a few days with our three children to get them to school, work, and prepare the house for our weekend airbnbers. He’ll be fine. But life will be easier for him (and he won’t be tempted by takeout) if by the time I leave there is a fridge full of cooked up food and he knows what needs to be done in the house.


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