Five Frugal Things

by Katy on October 31, 2017 · 60 comments

  1. I’ve been successful at not breaking into the Halloween candy, even though I changed my mind about storing it at the neighbor’s house which is my normal Katy-is-an-unapologetic-wierdo hack. (Instead, I shoved it into the back of our attic space to protect it from inevitable late night cravings.) I bought it during a 50%-off sale a couple weeks ago and look forward to handing it out to tonight’s adorable zombie cheerleaders and Darth Vaders. I’ll be alone at the house for the first time ever as my husband works and the kids are in college, but I still plan on dressing up and reveling in the neighborhood fun.

  2. I sold an antique cast iron skillet through Facebook Marketplace that was a pay-by-pound Goodwill Outlet find. I then sold a textbook through eBay that I’d pulled from a free pile while dropping my son off at college. I was put on call for work yesterday and then immediately called back in, which gave me four hours of overtime pay. I submitted another Clark Howard article and proposed two more article ideas.

  3. I borrowed my friend Lise’s sweater shaver to tidy up a Pendleton wool sweater that I’d bought at the Goodwill Outlet. I’d intended the sweater for my husband, but it was too small for him which means I now own a refreshed pill-free and cozy sweater for fall. I don’t own very much clothing, and this addition is perfect as the sweater is warm but still pretty thin. Plus, we Oregonians love our Pendleton wool!

  4. I worked yesterday and brought my own lunch, and then drank the free crappy coffee and the free delicious tea, I decorated my front porch using Halloween doo-dads that a former neighbor had handed down to me a million years ago, I gave my friend Lise a can of La Croix cranberry seltzer as a thank you for the sweater shaver and I let my free HBO subscription expire without renewing it, (I only wanted it for Game of Thrones.)

  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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{ 60 comments… read them below or add one }

Jennifer October 31, 2017 at 10:46 am

I’m going to surprise my kids by dressing up as a box of crayons.
1. Yesterday, we went to two church Fall festivals. The kids got lots of candy. They also got to play on inflatables, enjoy a petting zoo, win a 2 liter Coke in a ring toss, and win goodies in the cake walk. The church served us hotdogs and chips for lunch. It was a nice afternoon. When we got home, my kids were hungry so I heated up the soup from the free Friday download at Kroger.
2. My daughter’s costume requires blue hair. She really wanted to buy a pricey blue wig but I found a can of blue hair spray at the Dollar Tree that I’m trying to make stretch until Halloween. We have had a couple school events that the kids had to dress up for this week, and coincidentally, they called for blue hair. I have just enough left for Halloween night!
3. My daughter needed lotion to go in her backpack for her to use at school. Luckily, I save every tube I get from hotels so I have a nice little stash.
4. I have been lusting after a new canister set since I put the new faux granite treatment over my terribly worn Formica counter tops. I looked at my old set to see if I could do anything with them to make them look better. They are stainless steel so I scrubbed them good with steel wool and they look just like a brand new set! Not sure why I didn’t take a little time to do this sooner. I may apply some vinyl decals to them for a decorative touch, that’s one of the things we do at our business, so it would be free because I have access to a lot of scrap vinyl.
5. I made a delicious beef-vegetable soup from the meat my husband got a few weeks ago extremely discounted that Was in the freezer. I also used some tomatoes from the freezer that were gifted to me 2 years ago.
6. I went to the grocery store to by a whole hen because my kids want chicken and dumplings again this week. The hens were more than I usually spend at around $6+. I found a package of 12 chicken legs for $3.21 and right beside that was a package of 6 chicken legs for $3.27?! You would think the 12 would have been tiny but nope, they weighed exactly twice what the 6 pack weighed. You can guess which one I bought.


Maureen October 31, 2017 at 3:54 pm

I would love to hear a first hand review of your countertop treatment! What do you think of your new faux granite counters?


Jennifer October 31, 2017 at 6:32 pm

I love my faux granite countertops!. My formica was in really bad shape and I didn’t want to pay for granite. It’s a really neat alternative. It costs less to do than new formica would have. First, you sand your countertops and you are supposed to apply primer. I didn’t because mine were so old that they weren’t even shiny anymore. I used plain inexpensive craft paints from Joann’s for the design and I used kitchen sponges to apply that I cut into irregular shapes. You can buy kits but I wanted to choose my own colors and it cost less overall this way. I applied some ultra fine glitter and small peices of silver leaf after that. I had the silver leaf from another project so no cost there. Then lastly, you apply the epoxy mixed EXACTLY like the directions on the box say. It leaves a beautiful thick, glass-like coat. I have done 3 counter tops and still have one left. The reason I haven’t done that one yet is because I am replacing the sink so it going to be a bigger deal than the others. My sink has a big crack in it or I would leave it alone. Anyway, I love the finished look and it is holding up well. I am very careful with it but that’s just my nature. When it gets dirty I use a little glass cleaner on it and it shines like new again. I will be glad to send anyone a picture if interested. If you do decide to do this please watch a lot of you tube videos. They made me feel more confident and I learned so many helpful hints there.


Maureen November 6, 2017 at 5:09 pm

Thankyou! Off to watch You tube videos.<=


Cindy in the South I October 31, 2017 at 10:59 am

1. I dressed up for Halloween at work this morning, and took the afternoon off. I used a black knit t shirt, a black knit dress, my mom’s costume jewelry, and my grandmother’s brightly colored head scarves, to make a fortune teller costume. I rounded out the costume with boots and black hose. I used copious amounts of eye makeup, with big hoop earrings. 2. I made Russian Borscht with ingredients I already had at the house. It is a hearty delicious soup full of vitamins with chicken broth, beets, pickled cabbage, carrots, tomato paste, onions, beans, etc.
3. I brought my homemade meatloaf sandwiches for work lunch, again. I enjoyed a homemade cupcake that my friend brought for us at work..delicious!
4. I have stretched out the weeks between the coloring of my hair, so that I am doing it every six weeks instead of every four weeks. My hair grows fast so my roots are showing. Thank goodness for the fortune teller headscarf today…lol. 5. I did my nails.


Jennifer October 31, 2017 at 11:22 am

1. Cute idea!


Bee October 31, 2017 at 2:37 pm

Cindy, I wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed the stories about your mother that you posted last week. Her wit and words of wisdom were priceless.


Cindy in the South I November 1, 2017 at 5:19 am

Thanks Bee.. She was an independent, sassy character…lol


WaThriftFamily October 31, 2017 at 11:00 am

I’ve gone back to school for a degree in early childhood education. I’m taking classes at a local college and I have a meeting to see how many credits I can transfer from a previous degree. If all goes well I’ll be able to transfer 45 credits – a big savings.

I have class all day so I bag my lunch and bring water and coffee in various thrift store Kleen Kanteens. They usually have some company logo on them that I cover up with a sticker, but hey, I love ’em.

I put out an ask on the local plant exchange for some indoor plants and got four mother-in-law tongues, four spider plants, and another wandering Jew plant. I’ll be able to return the favor soon as they are growing quite well in various corners.

We were asked to bring a snack for my son’s school party today, and my MIL was complaining that she had too much frozen pumpkin bread in her freezer, so I asked her for one, defrosted it, and sent it to class. Win-win!

I’ve been losing weight lately and I’ve been getting tired of pulling up my jeans. I stopped by Goodwill yesterday and picked up two new pairs for 1.79 each since it was a tag day.


Angela @ Tread Lightly, Retire Early October 31, 2017 at 11:02 am

Our son will be wearing his Toothless costume (from how to Train Your Dragon) for the 3rd year in a row since I bought it really big the first time. Trying to figure out how to convince him that dressing up for Halloween means the same costume every year 😉


Taylor-Made Homestead October 31, 2017 at 11:02 am

1. Invited my parents for supper and served delicious but inexpensive crockpot spicy chicken & roasted a bunch of veggies – served all 4 of us quite nicely.
2. I picked the leftover meat off the bones and made several quarts of delicious chicken stock the next day.
3. There was enough leftover chicken for me to make homemade chicken & dumplings the next night to feed hubby & myself.
4. There was STILL enough chicken to make chicken noodle soup for lunch for both of us!
5. We sold our two laying hens for more than we paid for them for this past spring. Lots of eggs and natural pest control for little more than a little chicken scratch to supplement their free-range diet.

~Taylor-Made Homestead~


Denise November 1, 2017 at 12:37 am

Why did you sell them?


Rachel October 31, 2017 at 11:10 am

I can attest that we Oregonians love our Pendleton wool! Nothing makes me happier than the sight of a vintage Pendleton blanket at a resale shop or estate sale, which indeed happened a few weeks ago. Of course, I snagged it up real quick, and it’s the most delightful blue/green houndstooth pattern – something you’d never find in their new collection. I even found a perfect-condition women’s Pendleton blazer in my size at the Goodwill on NE Broadway. So friggin exciting!


Sandy October 31, 2017 at 11:18 am

1. Made soup with veggies in the fridge and freezer; yield four large servings.
2. Switched to winter sheets and warm blanket, so we can keep turn the heat down at night.
3. Our kids and grand sons will be with us for Thanksgiving. I’m starting to get ingredients for meals and treats for when they’re here. I kept the menu I wrote for last year, so meal planning will be so easy! Four boys, seven and under makes eating at home so much easier!
4. Rearranged house plants, using a plant stand that has made two interstate moves! The plants are mostly trimmings from friends and they’ve done well for months! Giving them as much daylight as possible, cleaning the air and adding a bit of cheer for the shorter days ahead.
5. Daughter in law will be getting something of mine that she has admired. It’s breakable, so I’m going to give it to her while she’s here. I have some bubble wrap to recycle and she can pack it in their luggage and save me the shipping cost!


KJD509 October 31, 2017 at 11:50 am

1) Held off until we were out of coffee yesterday to make a Costco run, then bought only what was on the list (although the list didn’t strictly limit the number of bags of Halloween candy, and it’s possible more than necessary made it into the basket).
2) Every time I thought about grabbing a few more pieces of candy, just to test them, I was reminded that I’d be reporting to this group. Kept the total number of samples in the single digits, even though the mixed bags I purchased had dozens of types, each of which was crying out to be tasted. You know, in case it was different this year.
3) The extended warranty we bought for a used car is paying off already – needs a new transmission, which is covered. (We were suspicious when we bought it, which is why we added the extension.) Service dept and sales dept are arguing with each other, but that’s not my problem, and I have a free loaner until they sort it out and do the repair.
4) Littlest was feeling morose about not having anything to do for Halloween in the New City – she’s just on the cusp of too old to trick or treat. A new friend invited her to come along and “supervise” younger siblings – in a reused costume, because it’s a new city. Frugal and cheering.
5) Old city, where I’m still trying to pack out of the house, has an annual extra garbage pick up. Took full advantage of that today, saving probably $100 in dump fees. I’m pretty frustrated about the lack of interest in our “free pile,” so I’m glad to at least not have to pay to send stuff to the dump.


KJD509 October 31, 2017 at 4:57 pm

5) revisited: the garbage didn’t get picked up. Now I’m feeling extra grouchy about the upcoming dump fees. Grrrr.


Denise November 1, 2017 at 12:43 am

I think that that disappointment merits a medicinal bit of chocolate. When it’s medicinal, it’s calorie-free. Allegedly.


KJD509 November 1, 2017 at 9:30 am

I will enthusiastically follow your medical advice on this one, Denise!


Melissa in Oz November 2, 2017 at 5:44 pm

Denise, in our house it’s standing up eating has no calories and if you bought it from a charity stall it’s negative calories!! I’ll take either!


susanna d October 31, 2017 at 12:16 pm

1. My husband lost/destroyed 2 pairs of reading glasses in as many days. Remembering Katy’s mention of Dollar Tree reading glasses, we stopped at Dollar Tree the next time we were in town. Spent $5 for 5 pairs. Husband now has 3 new pairs of reading glasses (replacing his two pairs, with a spare for future loss/breakage) and I have two new pairs. I’d been making do with a single pair for several months, but I think my husband was getting tired of hearing the words “Have you seen my reading glasses?” come out of my mouth a dozen times each day. I love my new glasses – they’re cute, they work just fine, and they are so many times cheaper than my previous pairs.
2. My husband finally decided a few of his t-shirts were too worn out/crappy to wear any longer – they’d actually reached that stage a long time ago. I cut up five t-shirts into paper towel substitutes.
3. We went from high temperatures in the 70’s one week to highs in the 30’s the next. It’s soup weather! I made a few soup creations with things from the freezer: a half-can of previously frozen stewed tomatoes and a ziploc bag of cooked frozen macaroni added to a quart of beef bone broth made tomato beef noodle soup. The next day, leftover chicken cacciatore and tomato sauced rice joined a quart of Costco rotisserie chicken carcass broth to make, um, chicken cacciatore soup? Sounded strange but it wasn’t half bad.
4. Found 39 cents last week. It was a good week for found coins.
5. Used 3 different $1 off gasoline coupons while in town. Since there’s no minimum purchase required, and since all 3 stations were within 1 mile of each other (two were across the street from each other), we bought 3 gallons at each station. Dropped the price by 33 cents per gallon.


lisa endrigian kranick November 1, 2017 at 4:21 am

I have 8 pairs of Dollar Tree glasses for this very reason! You can’t beat the price, but I find that they, being made of cheaper plastic, are much harder to clean to a truly clear degree. My old Foster Grants are much clearer, but you can’t beat the price, or always having reading glasses close by! My friend buys the really cute, colorful frames, knocks the lenses out, then has prescription lenses fitted into them, which saves a lot of money. Smart!


Isabelle November 1, 2017 at 5:36 am

Funny you say that, I was just looking at reading glasses frames at the pharmacy yesterday, asking myself if they would be strong enought for daily use. I don’t need reading glasses, but I do wear glasses to see far away, which means I wear them non-stop. But at 200-300$/ frame it gets really expensive to replace and they are not so cute. Doubting the cheap frame could sustain that amount of use for long.


deanna ar November 12, 2017 at 1:47 pm

Your #3 Susanna: So funny! I made chicken cacciatore last week and it didn’t turn out exactly as I expected so I added more chicken broth, more tomatoes and some leftover yellow squash/onions/banana peppers. It was delicious. I keyed the recipe into my iPad and called it…Chicken Cacciatore Soup!!!


cathy October 31, 2017 at 12:32 pm

1. Teen son decided he wanted to have a sort-of Halloween party. Which in teen boyspeak means hang out with your friends and play the “spooky” versions of whatever video games they play. I thought it would be fun to make the snacks table Halloween-themed, but went with Victorian Gothic. From around the house I rounded up a black tablecloth, piece of washed gauzy muslin (looks spiderweb-y), silver candlesticks, old leather-bound books (couldn’t find Poe, but did find O. Henry, Conan Doyle, and a few gems like a science book called “Disturbances of the Heart”), a tarnished silver water pitcher, tarnished silver goblets (that were in next year’s yard sale pile), silver tray, black serving bowls, cupcake wrappers made from black paper-cut spiderwebs, corks & a variety of bottles that hadn’t yet made it to glass recycling. Downloaded free printable “antique” apothecary labels for the jars & bottles. I bought (on sale) black taper candles, black votives, black pipe cleaners (spider legs), black feathers, black napkins & plates and b&w plates with a sketched skull design. We served black grapes, (homemade) pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes, cocktail size meatballs in marinara, popcorn, and hummus (served in a blood-red bowl) and orange and red veggies served in a black bowl. Blood orange San Pellegrinos and Flying Cauldron Butterscotch Beer. It was all suitably dark, and added ambiance.
2. My favorite thing on the snacks table (#1) was a very dark and brooding terrarium. I had a fishbowl, potting soil, and sheet moss, and gathered cuttings of plants in my yard of anything with dark purple/black foliage or tinged with red or “blood” colored flowers. While raiding the garden, I found some black lava rock. Added a mini plastic skeleton languishing on the “lawn”. The only thing I bought was a dark purple-leaved grass. For some reason, it came in the (small) pot with two other plants, so I teased them out and will re-pot them to make other houseplants.
2. Friends gave us a bag of tomatillos, so dinner tonight will be chicken chile verde. Made chicken stock last night from the carcass of chicken roasted a couple days ago. The leftover stock will go into squash soup, which I’ll make after I harvest Halloween pumpkins.
3. Mom called and wanted to treat me to coffee & lunch. Great company, great food, and got to support friends’ cafe.
4. Brought in all my potted geraniums from the porch. They’ll overwinter in the house (again). They’re all blooming right now, which is lovely.


Lazyretirementgirl November 2, 2017 at 11:40 am

What a wonderfully creative treat for your son and his buddies!


Lindsey October 31, 2017 at 12:38 pm

1. Wolfhound came down with something and was leaking at both ends, copiously. Thanks to past self for making rags and keeping them in a huge box in the garage so that I could clean up the messes the poor old fellow left and just throw away the rags. Years ago I would have burned through several rolls of paper towels, but we no longer buy them.
2. Wanted to make something festive for Halloween, so dug a $1 package of hot dogs out of the freezer (originally purchased to use to hide pills for the dog, who won’t eat them otherwise). Made a half recipe of bread dough. Slit the dogs open, inserted cheese I bought on sale, and wrapped each one up in dough to look like a mummy. Not the healthiest but we seldom eat hot dogs and it made my husband laugh at his lunch meal, so very well worth it. He’d been working outside all morning in freezing temperatures.
3. Found a sale for six fifths of vodka for half price if you bought all of them; apparently the store was no longer going to carry that brand. Hello to Christmas gifts of vanilla extract, almond extract, raspberry liqueur and honeyberry liqueur from berries grown this past summer. I’d only gone in there to buy a six pack of beer for beer batter bread…and when I got home I realized I’d forgotten to buy the beer!
4. Sold two books on Amazon
5. Got a free movie with husband, through a mystery shop.


A. Marie October 31, 2017 at 2:15 pm

So sorry for poor Wolfhound, Lindsey, and for you as the cleanup crew. Hope things get better soon for you both.


NatalieC November 2, 2017 at 2:52 pm

My rescue Teddy has had similiar stomach issues lately. After several rounds of different medicines. I mentioned giving him yogurt. We tried it and it worked, hopefully no more medication. He is a very picky eater, I am relieved he will eat yogurt. A tablespoon a day is what he gets. It could be worth a try for Wolfhound.


K D October 31, 2017 at 12:38 pm

1. I just returned from a hike in the woods at our local state park, with a friend. I bought the pass for 2018 and it’s also good for the rest of 2017. I’m sure my friend and I (as well as my family and I) will get $75 worth of good out of it.

2. I texted my SIL to tell her that our daughter would rather have gift cards than gifts (she had mentioned on the phone the other day that she finds it difficult to figure out what to buy our daughter). She said that is a win-win. Yay, for speaking up.

3. Tonight will be leftover burrito bowls. Lunch was a mish-mash of leftovers.

4. I stocked up on Halloween candy when it was marked down and had coupons on the packages. I paid $1.50 or less per bag. I have samples some of it (of course just to make sure it is okay).

5. The weather has been relatively warm so the heat has barely run. We put an extra blanket on the bed, since we let the temperature drop at night. I actually sleep better when it is cooler.


susanna d November 1, 2017 at 5:53 am

#1 – I’ve always considered our annual state park/trail passes to be tickets to wonderfully frugal entertainment, and money very well spent. Such varied scenery/terrain throughout the state, and access to so many trails. How neat that your 2018 pass is good for the rest of 2017 as well!


Revanche @ A Gai Shan Life October 31, 2017 at 12:52 pm

I replaced my eyeglasses lost in the move and chose to buy just one pair instead of two. I find that I do better at keeping track of some of my things when I only have ONE of them. Having two makes me relax a little and before you know it, it’s gone! I saved $20 on that second pair I didn’t get.

We accidentally saved on a Halloween costume due to the generosity of a friend who wanted to help us during a really stressful time and gifted us with a fantastic costume for JuggerBaby.


Kathy Hairston October 31, 2017 at 12:58 pm

1. Spent 4 wonderful days enjoying Fall in Portland. Celebrated a friend’s 60th birthday. Carried on luggage.
2. Visited 3 Goodwills in Portland and found NWT clothing and a cute pot.
3. Hubby is gone until Friday pm so eating out of pantry
4. Wrote personal notes in blank cards I have vs buying greeting cards
5. Listing items on FB garage sale


Isitaneedorawant October 31, 2017 at 1:45 pm

(1) Eldest who has just moved into her first home came over yesterday to borrow an electric light up pumpkin we have for her front window. Hoping in post Halloween sales to get one reduced for her. Sometimes you see seasonal decorations in garage sales/ church sales. Will take note for next year.
(2) Also gave her a large Halloween themed bowl won in a raffle last year.
(3) Am giving out divided packs (4) of Juice ice bars to the trick or treaters. I purchased them at 10 cents for a package of 12.
(4) Have been packing all leftovers into flat bags or reused containers into the freezer. Have one college aged child coming home in two weeks and am visiting another shortly afterwards. Both have expressed appreciation for my home cooking and the gift of time with premodern meals as they head into fall term exams and papers. The packages stay frozen for the plane trips.
(5) Oldest came over to borrow costumes. Another went to a party and changed a yellow rain poncho I had gifted her into three separate costumes during the evening. Another child is wearing a toque ( hat) today, wearing all black shirt, sweater, pants,painting whiskers on their face and calling themselves a “ cat burglar”.


Roberta October 31, 2017 at 1:47 pm

1. We all dressed up in reused or cheap costumes. My son went as a Space Invaders arcade game, made out of a box; my daughter made her own SpiderMan costume out of pay-by-the-pound bits, and my husband and I reused costumes from years ago. We’ll go down to my sister-in-law’s for trick-or-treat.
2. I’m bringing chili, made from dried beans and Grocery Outlet tomatoes, for dinner. We probably will have leftovers, which will dress baked potatoes later this week for dinner.
3. I’m hanging laundry out on the line, even though it’s not drying fast anymore. On the plus side, it’s not hot anymore!
That’s it for me today!


MW October 31, 2017 at 1:56 pm

– Younger son is wearing an astronaut costume that was passed down from big brother.
– Older son is wearing a pirate costume that we put together from Goodwill and stuff around the house. I’ll take the lace off the dress shirt after Halloween and he’ll have a much-needed dress shirt for the winter.
– Handing out blinky lights that my work gave me, therefor not buying candy.
– Planning a birthday breakfast for my husband using what we have around the house instead of going out (always his first choice).
– The weeks’ lunches have come from a large vat of soup made from stuff that we had around the house.


A. Marie October 31, 2017 at 2:14 pm

FFT, Dental Blues Edition:

(1) Went to dentist today for regular cleaning/checkup. Dentist allows as how the dodgy molar he’s been watching for a while is probably going to need to be replaced with an implant next year. Bleah! So how is this frugal? Because I finally got dental insurance through my employer last year, just in time for all heck to start breaking loose in my mouth. So it won’t be as bad as it could be.

(2) Dental hygienist says that the best candy in terms of teeth is unadulterated chocolate, because it melts right off. Naturally, this was my cue to stop off at Wegmans on my way home to pick up two mildly discounted small bags of Hershey bars for the very few trick-or-treaters we expect. (Only one small fairy princess so far, and it’s after 6 pm EDT. The cold, damp weather may be discouraging them.)

(3) The sudden dip in temperature meant that DH lit up our wood-burning fireplace insert for the first time on Sunday, and it’s been going ever since. We’ve never paid a penny for firewood, since DH scavenges all ours off curbs and through tips from neighbors re: recently felled trees in the ‘hood. And we probably have enough in stock to see us through from now till nursing home time.

(4) No costumes for DH and me. We figure our 60-something faces may be frightening enough.

(5) Was seriously tempted to splurge on something for dinner at Wegmans, but resisted temptation and made the BKT (bacon, kale, and tomato) sandwiches I’d been planning. Bacon from the 1/2 pig we buy, our own kale, and one of the last of our own tomatoes. I actually prefer kale to lettuce in these sandwiches now–the hot bacon wilts the kale nicely.


Marilyn October 31, 2017 at 8:00 pm

Sorry about the dental woes. I really do sympathize. So glad you got the timely dental insurance.


Isabelle November 1, 2017 at 6:26 am

#4, ahah!!!!


Bee October 31, 2017 at 2:34 pm

1) It was a rare and beautiful day in North Florida on Sunday. The air was dry and cool, and there was not a cloud in the sky. DH and I went to a state park and walked about 6 miles along the intracoastal waterway. We saw a pair of bald eagles soaring above the sandy beach. It was lovely and inexpensive at just $3.

2)I have been using up odds and ends in the freezer and refrigerator. I made a big pot of chicken and rice using 3 carcasses that had been put away. I made egg roll in a bowl using 1/2 a head of leftover cabbage. A few small potatoes,carrots and a stray onion were put into a pot roast. I had an extra dozen of eggs and made egg salad for lunch. I am trying to use every little bit of everything.

3) My son has shared his Netflix info with us and we have shared our PBS info with him. There is so much to watch and no cable charges!!

4) I was given some useful garage sale freebies this past weekend — a box of envelopes, binder clips, a roll of bubble wrap, and 2 awesome CDs.

5) I worked my side job the end of last week and made a little cash. I sold three items on eBay and rejected 2 super low-ball offers. I shipped the items I sold in found boxes. I was out running errands today, so I stopped at the GW. I purchased an item I needed, an item that I wanted and two for resale.


Jennifer October 31, 2017 at 2:35 pm

1. Went to the neighborhood Halloween party where we all ate free pizza for dinner. Yum!
2. Was freezing cold when we got home so I made homemade hot chocolate.
3. Dh rode his bike to work today, saving on gas.
4. Made pumpkin chocolate chip muffins from a pie pumpkin I pureed, made banana muffins from bananas that had gone bad, and made chocolate chip muffins – all on Sunday. Breakfasts for the week!
5. We all came up with Halloween costumes for free with items already on hand.


janine October 31, 2017 at 2:39 pm

Happy Halloween!
Have an easy and cheap casserole in the oven because we will be distracted by trick-or treaters tonight.
2. Got sale candy but misplaced my coupon for additional $1.50 off. Tried a few items to make sure they were OK.
3. Put together a box of books to drop off at half priced books tomorrow for a few $$ in credit.
4. Friend treated me to a free lunch hosted by her bank. Consisted of hot dogs and chips. Hey, the root beer was really good!
4. Reusing decorations purchased in years gone by.
5. Have many new family members – have been using $10 off $10 coupons issued by JC Penney towards baby gifts. They seem to be coming out more often than in the past.


Jill A October 31, 2017 at 2:52 pm

1. My husband and I are eating up the leftovers in the fridge. I used up the last pound of ground turkey to make chili. I added part of a can of tomato juice and then froze the rest in portions for future recipes.
2. Planning to have my mother over tomorrow.. she will dye my hair for me.
3. Took my daughter home Sunday night and my husband and I ate dinner at the nice dining hall with her using free guest passes that came with her meal plan.
4. I’m reading a kindle first pick book that is free with my Amazon Prime membership. I’ve also downloaded a couple books from the library. Our library didn’t have a book that my daughter wanted to read. Instead of ordering it off of Amazon my Mom got it for her from her library.
5. I sold some Corelle dishes that were new in their boxes. My FIL had them in a garage sale over the summer and told my daughters they could have the money from the sale. Nobody bought them so I took them home to sell on ebay. Since they were a Christmas pattern I waited until last week to put them on. I used a box and packing material that I saved. I printed out postage and had the post office pick it up from my home saving me a trip.


tonya October 31, 2017 at 3:27 pm

1) Worked today and ate the potluck lunch at work.
2) Going to a neighborhood party and planning on fun and basically free socializing there.
3) Leaving candy bowl on the front porch for trick or treaters. I bought markdown Laffy Taffy, which I don’t like, to keep from eating the candy ahead of time.
4) Wearing a thrifted costume.


TJ October 31, 2017 at 5:31 pm

1. Walked to work today, as usual, but had to wear a jacket! Finally! Central FL has been so HOT!
2. Walked home for lunch, as usual, had soup, crackers and a bit of cheese.
3. I work at my local library, so I put some new books on reserve.
4. Brought home some books on making baby items, for a gift for a co-worker due in Feb. Love sewing for others.
5. DD and I had grill cheese sandwiches for dinner, using up end pieces of bread and the last of the cheap cheese we didn’t really like. I turn the crusts to the inside, mayo on the soft side, and with the melted cheese, it doesn’t taste like crust. The cheese tasted better all melty.
6. Watched “The Voice” with DD, we get 6 channels free with the indoor antenna I purchased at Wal-Mart.


Mand01 October 31, 2017 at 6:13 pm

That’s the second time I’ve seen La Croix mentioned online in two days. I’d never heard of it til yesterday. We don’t have it here.
1. I made a Mexican feast on Sunday night that included making tortillas from scratch with pork lard I rendered myself from a roast I made yonks ago and then froze. As part of Operation Empty Freezer it was served with a frozen quinoa and vegetable mix, refried beans, homemade salsa, guacamole and sour cream. So yum.
2. We had leftover tortillas and chicken enough for everyone to take chicken and salad wraps for lunch.
3. We made stock from the carcass of the chicken and then I used it last night to make a TexMex style chicken noodle soup. I’m having it for lunch again today
And so is my husband. This means we got four meals from one chicken. Even though we buy the more expensive free range chickens we can still get a good deal out of them.
4. Listening to a free audio book from the library
I think that’s it


Teresa October 31, 2017 at 7:54 pm

“Operation Empty Freezer”… love that!


Katy Hope October 31, 2017 at 7:07 pm

1. Went to some Halloween parties this weekend and the kids made lots of Halloween crafts. Hung up the crafty creations as Halloween decorations. After Halloween, I will pack them up with the rest of our decorations and save them to pull out again next year.

2. Did a clean out of our bathroom cabinets and have been collecting all stray bottles of shampoo/conditioner, etc. I have been using up these random bottles for the last year and haven’t had to buy any more shampoo/conditioner.

3. My husband has been away on work travel, which means that we have been eating almost every meal at home 3 times a day, saving a ton of $$.

4. My son made his Halloween costume out of craft materials we had around the house. Spent less than $5 on additional glue sticks once we ran out.

5. Spending Halloween trick or treating from a friend’s house in a difference neighborhood, so didn’t buy any Halloween candy. Can’t wait until the kids get some, so I can eat it!


Teresa October 31, 2017 at 7:52 pm

1. Took 92 year old mom to lunch with my Rubios birthday coupon for free entree — baja style fish tacos. Had to buy a drink but $2.29 for lunch for two is a great deal. Thank you Rubio’s!

2. Free entertainment — drove down to the ocean for a look at the water and a bit of peace that the ocean brings. Mom had a short little nap in the car.

3. Decided we needed coffee, but instead of going to a dessert restaurant we went to an outdoor coffee place and enjoyed good coffee with cookies from TJ’s.

4. Had a sandwich dinner made out of left-over birthday tri-tip. Yum.

5. OMG, suddenly remembered it is Halloween! I dragged out the decorations, grabbed the smarties purchased last week and remembered that we had spider rings and glow bracelets left over from a few years ago, so no need to buy more candy. It’s 8:50 now, Trick-or-Treater’s are done, lights are out.

… and I want to cook my pumpkin this year (but not tomorrow) so instead of carving it, I printed out a funny mouth and eyes, taped it on, capped it with glow bracelets and a witches hat and he was good to go.
Good night ladies — Happy Halloween!


Bethany M October 31, 2017 at 10:23 pm

1. Instead of paying for a tutor to work with my kids on their math facts, I’m hosting a math workshop and inviting their friends. They are so excited!
2. Used a coupon at Staples to get free printouts for the kids to make triangle math fact cards.
3. Dressed the kids up with dollar store costumes and a recycled bandana.
4. Took the kids to Krispy Kreme in their costumes for them to pick out a free doughnut.
5. Took the kids home for lunch even though I wanted to just pick up 50 cent corn dogs.


Lazyretirementgirl November 2, 2017 at 12:16 pm

You might check out Khan Academy online. Free math video tutorials that even this aging math phobic understood.


Bethany M November 2, 2017 at 10:27 pm



Lea October 31, 2017 at 10:31 pm

1) made a big batch of spag bol and froze it to stop me buying take away on the way home from kids netball tonight
2) used a coupon for petrol
3) packed lunch for myself, husband and child every day this week.
4) driven my 10 year old fully paid for car
5) started a Christmas present list so I can look for sales


Sandra November 1, 2017 at 2:44 am

1. Put up 16 pints of salsa with the last of the peppers and tomatoes from the summer garden.

2. Also put up another 6 quarts of chopped canned tomatoes, as above.

3. Ate all meals at home last week. We were out of town on Saturday and could have succumbed to the temptation to stop and eat out, but persevered and came home to put together a meal from the pantry and refrigerator.

4. It is our turn to provide hospitality for a club we enjoy. Rather than pick up a sandwich tray, cookies and chips, I will make sandwiches, bar style cookies, and a veggies tray with dip. plus sliced apples and grapes. It will all cost less than a sandwich tray from Costco or the grocery store.

5. I made a great cherry tomato soup with 2 lbs. of cherry tomatoes from our garden clean-up. It was so delicious that I will make it again and freeze it for later. Since we have a lot of cherry tomatoes this was a good way to use them up.


Mrs. Picky Pincher November 1, 2017 at 5:00 am

Ahh, don’t you love free decorations? 🙂 I need to be better about connecting with our neighbors. You never know how they’ll help you out (and I’m sure they’re wonderful anyway).

This week:

1. I wore my $20 thrift store Cat Lady costume. I intend to wear it until it’s no longer ironic and it’s just my full-time identity. 🙂

2. I took nice photos of our food for the blog in my DIY lightbox.

3. I meant to nap during my lunch break yesterday. In hindsight I should have napped, but I’m happy that instead I baked biscuits, cooked potatoes, and fried sausage. Now we have breakfast prepped for the week (I was at a conference last week and couldn’t cook).

4. I scored a little more freelance work.

5. This weekend we plan to cook several food staples like beans and marinara.


Val November 1, 2017 at 9:27 am

This made me laugh so much ” I intend to wear it until it’s no longer ironic and it’s just my full-time identity”


Mand01 November 2, 2017 at 3:25 am

I took a nap in the car in my lunch break today. I woke up drooling and with baby nap hair. Worth it.


ouvickie November 1, 2017 at 8:05 am

1) Yesterday’s lunch was free from Fuzzy’s Taco Shop, provided by a work Vendor. Yummy and free – two best lunch options!
2) Another day of free lunch food – I’ll take it!
3) I’ve been listening to the audiobook – Rhett Butler’s People – it’s a good background story, of the Gone With The Wind hero, with a great history lesson to boot. I highly recommend it if you like historical fiction.
4) My health insurance cost went up a bit, since I had to switch over to a PPO, but I was able to change a few other enrollments to make up the difference and since it’s before tax, it actually helps us come tax time.
5) I bought myself some new VS panties, while they were on sale. I hit the sale on a day they were awarding account holders with 100 reward points and $20 gift card. I will use both to gift my daughter on her birthday in January.


Lauren November 1, 2017 at 10:15 am

1. Went to a Halloween showing of Ghostbusters at the drive in. Brought our own food to save on expensive snacks. We did give in to fresh donuts which were thoroughly enjoyed!
2. Now that’s it cold out my super picky Husband is happy to have meatless meals in the form of soup nights. Less meat, more veggies, and slightly lower grocery bills!
3. We went to a local outlet mall to find some needed sweatshirts and left empty handed. Nothing appealed to us- and the “reduced” prices appealed even less. It also reminded us of why we don’t bother shopping for fun anymore. We had fun walking around together and having a free brownie sample from one shop though.
4. Spent the bank holiday taking our pup to a local dog park. My husband, brother and sister in law and I like to pick a new place to explore whenever we all have a day off together. This park wasn’t the nicest but it was nice to hang out together and get fresh air.
5. Instead of taking me out on a date I convinced husband him making me breakfast in bed was WAY more romantic. Money saving and I got to stay in my pajamas for even longer so definitely my kind of romance!


Susie's Daughter November 1, 2017 at 10:55 am

1) DS went trick or treating as Luke Skywalker which meant he could wear clothes he already owned. I modified his ghost costume (a white sheet with darts sewn in for arms) from two years ago by cutting it up the middle to make Luke’s tunic. Nothing purchased for this costume and he loved it!

2) Made cream of asparagus soup with frozen asparagus from my parent’s garden for lunch. Served it with marked down pita bread and fancy cheese leftover from my in laws visit over the weekend.

3) Did not buy any marked down candy today, even though I was looking for some. Still more than I would like to spend for something I don’t need to eat so I voted no.

4) Shopping the local grocery for sales and a few items for putting away. Shopping our freezer and pantry for dinner this week.

5) We had an 18 hour power outage on Sun/Mon from the New England windstorms. I like to think of myself as reasonably prepared for disruption since I grew up here, but this was a wake up call. We have a private well with electric well pump, so there is no water when there is no power. I used half the ‘rain barrel’ (aka 32 gal trash can) for bucket flushing for 5 people in one 12 hour period. We need to up our game to be fully prepared for the minimum 3 day window that recommends. Today I bought extra vinegar and toilet paper for emergency stash. Next week will be bleach and rubber gloves and so on until we are ready. I will also invest in another rain barrel in the spring. (Winter isn’t as much of an issue since there is almost always snow to melt on the woodstove. 🙂 ) .


Betty Winslow November 2, 2017 at 5:30 pm

1. Still using our public library. They changed their fine/check out policy. Now, no fines are charged unless a book is more than 30 days overdue, but you can’t check out if you have more than 3 overdue books. This messes with my library chi, but I’ll get used to it!
2. Getting better at using up odds and ends, for the most part, but being sick for a week meant a lot of stuff spoiled. 🙁 Will continue working on this!
3. Organized my needs for a recent doctor visit and was able to get checked out, paperwork written for several tests I need, a prescription sent in, and still make it to work on time.
4. Spent my most recent Extra Bucks coupon at CVS on a new stash of Dove Dark Chocolates. Free candy – score!
5. In the midst of two full days of teacher in-service meetings; today’s lunch was catered, tomorrow we’re on our own, so some of the more frugal of us are packing and having a “picnic”, while the rest try to get waited on at a local restaurant in 45 min. I predict they will all be late and we’ll have our day pushed back. Boo. But the picnic should be fun!


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