Five Frugal Things

by Katy on July 11, 2019 · 74 comments

  1. I’ve been sloooowly but consistently selling things, including a pair of pricey Nike soccer cleats, a Starbucks tumbler and the set of free pots and pans that my husband earned for blah-blah years of service to his employer. I have someone supposedly coming by this evening for a Yakima bike rack system that everyone emails me about, yet no one follows through on. Crossing my fingers.

    However, my experience has been that any item that gets this much attention, (however flaky that attention may be) will eventually sell for full price.

    The money from all of these various income hacks goes into an account for my son’s college tuition and expenses. (The next tuition payment is due around October 1st.) Zero debt college is my goal, which so far we’ve been able to reach. One $22 Starbucks tumbler at a time.

    For those who may wonder about my son’s financial role in his education. He’s working full time in a well paying job all summer, and will be contributing to rent and his own books and expenses for the 2019-2010 school year.

  2. I’m attending an information session about building ADUs (accessory dwelling units) with a high end remodeling company. I’m not really in the market for one, but it should be interesting new information to tuck into the chaos of my brain. Plus, they advertised free hor d’hoeuvres, beer and wine, which is my love language. I roped my friend Lise into being my “plus one.”

    Free food + free booze + information + socializing = my kind of night!

  3. I paid $95 to my next door neighbor for six months of shared garbage service. Because my family of four creates very little garbage, it’s really easy for our two families to share this necessary service. (Oddly, garbage pickup is privately run in Portland, Oregon.) This isn’t something that the garbage company offers, but we set this system up at least ten years ago.

    Each of our families saves $190 per year which makes it worth the hassle.

  4. I drove my mother across town and she filled my gas tank as a thank you gesture, (thank you mom!) I found 31¢ in change under the credit union coin counting machine, I dropped an eBay package off with a nearby buyer instead of mailing it, I redeemed four more vouchers for free Thorns MLS soccer tickets through the 76 gas station promotion, I watched a library DVD of Coal Miner’s Daughter with my daughter and I crossed “avocados” off my grocery list this week.

  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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{ 74 comments… read them below or add one }

Lisa M. July 11, 2019 at 4:34 pm

5FF: Hot Summer Days

I do not enjoy heat & am thrilled to see the trees already beginning to drop yellow leaves to signal that fall is coming.

1. Due to heat, switched over to 100% oven free meals which means stovetop & microwave. I store the no heat recipes together, so it is easy to grab them once the temperature starts rising.

2. Spending lots of time completing online CE courses before current licensure period ends. Making the most of all access pass.

3. Went to card store to buy birthday card & was very unimpressed with store’s recent remodel which eliminated unique card lines & a clearance section. Remembered stash of free cards from last summer, so left without buying anything & used a card in my stash.

4. Started garage set-up for annual neighborhood garage sale. Won’t have a lot of time to gather new items but do have pre-priced unsold items from previous sales boxed in garage, a new box full of discards & a list of larger items to get rid of.

5. Assembled & copied required documents from recent purchase of new tires for DD & mailed them to manufacturer in timely manner. Checking 2 sites for progress of pending rebates: tires & contact lenses.


Joy July 12, 2019 at 6:54 am

Don’t know if you have a Dollar General, Family Dollar or the like in your area, but their cards are generally 50 cents to a dollar. Generally, pretty nice cards also.


Lisa M. July 12, 2019 at 12:27 pm

Yes, I have purchased cards at the dollar store for 50 cents but I like to have more options for family members, so am willing to spend more for them.


Jill A July 11, 2019 at 4:45 pm

1. I waxed my own eyebrows and painted my own toenails. I will pick up a box of DIY hair dye next time I’m near Ulta.
2. I returned one library DVD and picked up two more to watch. We haven’t seen hidden figures yet and it was on both of our lists of movies we’d like to see. My daughter picked up several Manga to read.
3. I took my daughter to the AMC theater for $5 Tuesday to see the new Spiderman movie. We ate lunch beforehand and didn’t buy snacks.
4. I took a my dog for a beautiful walk with a friend at a local nature trail. I invited her in for a glass of ice tea which I made. My daughter and I took the dog to the dog park in the evening and enjoyed the beautiful weather and the company of other friends.
5. I chose two more Kindle First Read books that come with my Prime subscription. They were giving away two books this month in honor of prime day.


Kathy July 11, 2019 at 6:02 pm

1. I’ve been pet and house sitting for my son and daughter in law. The upside is my sister an her husband live next door so it’s been a 2 for 1 trip.
2. Had my hair cut by my sister’s hairdresser which saved me $30 as my hairdresser is more expensive
3. Took clothes to a couple of consignment stores and received a few $$
4. Spent very little $$ on food or entertainment. We did go to the museum of art using our senior discounts. Did not buy anything sovereigns
5. Packing protein bars for flight home tomorrow


Carolyn July 15, 2019 at 12:13 pm

Sounds like saving $30 on a haircut was a good deal, but not one you could do regularly if it requires a flight to get there from your home. I know I used to pay $65 plus tip to get my haircut at the salon before I had my husband take over cutting my hair for me. The trip to the salon is a hassle I do not miss and cost I don’t need to shell out.


Cathy July 11, 2019 at 6:51 pm

1. Fed an army of boys (5, but it felt like an army), plus myself & husband tonight’s of random meat in the freezer. BBQed turkey burgers, veggie burgers, and hot dogs. It was a FEAST!
2. Found $0.58 so far this week.
3. Getting my son a $35 annual street parking permit in the city where he goes to college. Beats almost $600 for 2 semesters of on-campus parking!
4. Random eBay sales this week as well. Love those email alerts to ship an item! 🙂
5. Selling random clothing on Poshmark. Another great way to clean out my house and bring in some extra dough.


Jen July 11, 2019 at 8:04 pm

Wow, nice job on the cheap college parking. I will have to remember that one when/if my kids go away to college.


Lisa M. July 11, 2019 at 8:21 pm

Cathy, I love your #3 & would love to do the same for my DD. Unfortunately, she will be attending a massive university in a dense urban area, so at 18 I am willing to invest in on-campus parking. But I will keep your good idea in mind for the future!


Jill A July 12, 2019 at 3:50 am

Cathy, my phone makes a cha-ching sound when an ebay item sells. I get a little thrill every time I hear it.


Cathy July 11, 2019 at 6:52 pm

1. Fed an army of boys (5, but it felt like an army), plus myself & husband tonight’s dinner of random meat in the freezer. BBQed turkey burgers, veggie burgers, and hot dogs. It was a FEAST!
2. Found $0.58 so far this week.
3. Getting my son a $35 annual street parking permit in the city where he goes to college. Beats almost $600 for 2 semesters of on-campus parking!
4. Random eBay sales this week as well. Love those email alerts to ship an item! 🙂
5. Selling random clothing on Poshmark. Another great way to clean out my house and bring in some extra dough.


Cindy in the South July 11, 2019 at 7:50 pm

1. I wore thrifted clothes, cut and dyed my hair, did my nails, wore my mother’s pearl necklace, and polished my shoes with vegetable oil, for my jury trial. I also packed my lunch, but was not able to eat it for the three days of the trial. The dog was estatic. 2. My neighbor gave me lots of tomatoes and cucumbers, which I am sharing with my youngest son. 3. We are expecting rain with Barry, so free car wash. My friends in Baton Rouge are less enthusiastic because of the anticipated rain totals….yikes! I am sorta brain comatose at the moment so that is all I can remember


Cindy in the South July 11, 2019 at 8:10 pm

4. I made pinto beans in Crock-Pot for tacos. 5. I made a dental appointment for my never ending bad teeth saga….. groan. Still, better to handle it now rather than later.


Lisa M. July 11, 2019 at 8:16 pm

Cindy, Re: Your #3. I’m glad to know there is a kindred spirit that finds the upside in downpours. I literally refuse to pay for a car wash. Flooding rains, well that’s another story… 🙁


Lee July 11, 2019 at 9:25 pm

I’m trying to find the perfect Mujadara rice recipe. This is worthwhile because it’s cheap and delicious. I’d like to include it in my cheap dinner roundup. Also, I think it would make a perfect potluck offering— cheap and unexpected.


jann July 12, 2019 at 1:34 am
Vickey July 14, 2019 at 7:05 am

That sounds delish! Jane Esselstyn has a vid on her YouTube channel on how to carmelize onions without oil, which would make it even healthier.


Kathy S. July 14, 2019 at 9:54 am

That sounds really good. I bookmarked this to try when my son returns home.


VanessaKC July 16, 2019 at 3:43 pm

Budget bytes has a good one!


Midwest Beth July 11, 2019 at 9:33 pm

1. Saved 45 cents per gallon of gas at Kroger because of doing surveys after shopping and my grocery purchases, waited till the warning light came on that gas was low so I could maximize the discount $5.85 savings 🙂

2. So excited just harvested for the first time ever homegrown lettuce and spinach, have never grown them before. Managed to keep Peter rabbit from eating it (made my daughter chase him out of the raised bed one morning) through a combination of home made preventatives involving a spray of crushed garlic and Dawn, blood meal and scattered dog hair around the raised bed. The rabbits did eat my zucchini blossoms planted by my fence, my face looks like Elmer Fud, dang rascally rabbits, luckily I have a few in pots on the deck.

3. Watching free YouTube videos to help me in the garden, so appreciate it! What did we do before YouTube?

4. Went to Bath and Body to get my free item, got lotion for my hands they have that helps them not be so pealy and said no to everything else – take that consumerism! No candles, perfume or lotions – even daughter who was with me said no:-)

5. Listening to The Great Alone and really enjoying it. Just started the library copy of season 2 DVD set of Veronica Mars with my daughter – great watch even the second time around, forgot so much and how full the plot line is! Now to determine how to not spend money to watch the Hulu reboot that’s coming out July 26th with 8 episodes as I already have the basic membership I got for 99 cents a month. Could become a future frugal fail!

6. Frugal Fail – returned library checkout late, will have a fine.


Vickey July 14, 2019 at 7:10 am

Congratulations on your harvest! I feel ya on the rabbit saga – we’ve had a rabbit this year, for the first time in about 18 yrs. And sooo many groundhogs and chipmunks! I tell folks we have all the garden pests except bears and elephants.


A. Marie July 14, 2019 at 3:26 pm

Same here re: the varmints, Beth and Vickey. Re: the bears and elephants, I fully expect Eastern black bears to be moving in on us in the near future–and if the elephants at our local zoo ever decide to go on a walkabout, it’ll be just my luck if they head over here.

The only real positive change this year is that I’m noticing fewer rabbits, probably thanks to a big jump in our local fox populations (both red and gray). But, then, this may pose a new hazard if any of the foxes get rabies. One darn thing after another…


AuntiAli July 11, 2019 at 11:26 pm

1. Only went out once this week so no gas used. I did spend money on dinner tonight.
2. Got a book and the 7th season of Call the Midwife from the library. Saw a couple of other shows I’d like to see on Netflix. Netflix is free as a thank you from our newish cable company.
3. Didn’t go out this week so I saved gas there. Went to get dinner tonight and spent money. Still have lots of my allowance squirrelled away for vacation.
4. I’ve got to make some suppers. I feel like I haven’t had a real meal in forever. On Sunday hubby and I will go out to eat using a Groupon I bought.
5. Keeping AV at a higher temperature than usual and watching electricity use1. Only went out once this week so no gas used. I did spend money on dinner tonight.


Jennifer July 12, 2019 at 8:32 pm

2. There is a new Netflix series called blown away that is a glass blowing competition. I have always been intrigued by the art of glass blowing so I can’t wait to find some time to binge watch it. Love Netflix!


Mand01 July 12, 2019 at 12:23 am

1. Had meetings with clients today, lunch and coffee, both of which they paid for.
2. I combined the meetings with a day in which I had to take my youngest to a workshop so I could combine errands. In between, I stopped off at my parents house and worked.
3. Before I left, I threw a chicken in the crockpot so that dinner was ready when I got home. I spent no money yesterday or today.
4. I made pumpkin soup with the last of my homegrown pumpkins (I do have more in the freezer). I was unsure what to make as a side. I invented a kind of ricotta sloppy joe using what I had in the fridge that was surprisingly good.

I think that’s all.


Lindsey July 12, 2019 at 11:17 am

Could you say more about your ricotta sloppy joe? Sounds like something we would like…I, too, have tons of pumpkin pulp in the freezer, left from last summer’s garden. And now I have new pumpkins growing in this year’s garden. Yikes.


Mand01 July 12, 2019 at 2:07 pm

I had hot dog rolls in the freezer so I split those. I made up a mix of a Croft’s tablespoons of smooth ricotta and some leftover chutney- red tomato and green tomato. I spooned it over the base of the hotdog rolls and sprinkled with a bit of grated cheddar. Put tops back on, wrapped each in foil and baked ten minutes until the cheddar melted. Sounds weird but was actually very tasty.


Mand01 July 12, 2019 at 2:08 pm

Don’t know what Croft’s is. That came from autocorrect


Jennifer July 12, 2019 at 8:10 pm

I thought Crofts was some kind of uniquely regional brand I had never heard of like Vegemite, Ha!

Lindsey July 13, 2019 at 11:31 am

Thanks! It sounds pretty good to me so we will be giving it a try. Always looking for ways to jazz ordinary stuff up, because in our house bored means going out to eat.


Jill July 12, 2019 at 3:21 am

1.We are lucky enough to have a friend who loans out his cottage to friends and family. We are heading there for a week – with our kids coming in for various visits during that week. (Don’t worry -he knows he always has a place to stay with us also) We’re driving so it’s a low cost vacation. We’ll bring a cooler of food and splurge a few nights for dinner. Also booking a sailboat ride in the area for a fun getaway that is also byob and bring your own snacks.
2. Had alot of visitors over the July 4th weekend with too much food. But we managed to eat all the leftovers or give it away so very little waste. Food waste is something I’m bad at but working on.
3. No new clothes for vacation. I don’t need anything new. In the past I would have splurged for a new outfit but not anymore.
4. Have a $125 check waiting on me at my consignment store for selling various clothes and household items.
5. Have been using my netflix account to watch Midsomer Mysteries with my daughter. Actually we’re a bit obsessed with this one.


Kristen | The Frugal Girl July 12, 2019 at 3:53 am

This seems like a good time to have salsa and chips instead of guacamole and chips. 😉

Imagine how mad you’d be if those avocados happened to be the sort that go from hard to overripe!


Crosby July 12, 2019 at 6:27 am

1. That computer I mentioned 2 posts ago that I got a 25% discount through my dad’s job? Well a new version of the laptop was just released so they automatically upgraded my order. And for some reason it’s cheaper than the previous version, so I saved another $100. Yay!!
2. When I popped in to say hello to my parents while traveling for work, my mom fed me lunch. Salad made from her garden. Delicious, healthy, and frugal for us both.
3. Lots of appointments lately that are covered by insurance and I’m using my FSA to pay the copays.
4. Going to Shakespeare in the Park tonight with a friend – fee entertainment and we’ll bring our own food and drinks!
5. The coop is having a sale for members today so I made a list of spices and bulk items that I need to stock up on. I have all my reusable shopping and bulk bags ready to use.


Roberta July 12, 2019 at 6:54 am

1. Making fruit scrap vinegar for the first time with apple bits I’ve saved from my tree, and a large box of home grown apples I got from the food bank.
2. Passing along bread from my food bank run to a friend. Our chickens are not able to process all the bread that is left over, so if I don’t find a home for it, I’m going to have to stop bringing it all home. 🙁 I’d hate for any to go into the landfill, but leaving it in front of my house will only feed vermin.
3. Split a burger with my husband last night. We still had leftover tater tots afterwards, so I’m really glad we split! Tots will be heated up in the toaster oven.
4. Dinner will be at home tonight, using up even more of the surplus from my weekly food bank run. We got some sort of squash, a bunch of iffy mushrooms (any that are too iffy they’ll go to the chickens) and I have leftover chard stems from my mother’s CSA this past weekend.
5. Spent 1.5 hours on hold to the cruise line. After the first time I got through, I had to call the travel agent and wait with her while she waited on hold. However, we finally got through, and the cruise line offered us free airfare for the first two people in each cabin, and round trip fare for the other two at what my mother had priced for one-way! It was worth the time. (I’m not usually a cruising person, but this is for my parents 50th anniversary, so I’m going.)


Joy July 12, 2019 at 6:58 am

Roberta – as we have gotten older, my husband and I split more meals. Some, frankly, are just too much food and we do this when we can’t take the leftovers.
Saves money, calories and a long night of indigestion !


Joy July 12, 2019 at 7:02 am

1. I needed some new pants. Frankly, I have only bought 1 pair of jeans since retiring 14 months ago (and on sale, of course) and also finding some of my pants are now too big. Yeah ! Found some great fitting pants and while not marked on sale, they actually were and the price went from $30 to $12. And, I had a coupon which brought the price down to $9.32.
2. Used up more items out of the freezer, including turkey carcass and leftover veggies and potatoes for soup.
3. Shopping for my elderly Mom who wanted leggings and pants, I brought her a couple of options to try. She did not like one of the leggings but it fit me. Great price, originally $16, got it for $4.80. Will wear them into next year for sure.
4. Attended a free garden lecture in our area. They had coffee and cookies as well as the excellent information on using native plants. Carpooled with a friend, so did not use any gasoline. Also, won a new plant and got another plant for free – aquatic milkweed, for the monarchs.
5. Picked more basil today for drying. Really like the Genovese basil for the smell and taste in food.


Nan July 12, 2019 at 1:15 pm

I don’t think I’ve seen this but Is your daughter paying room/board? All 3 of my kids graduated from college debt free thanks to my DH, myself and scholarships but then they were on their own. They all got jobs quickly- two in different states- but not one has ever moved back home. My nephew graduated from college in May and has until September to move out or pay room/board of at least $600 a month. It’s his choice.


Katy July 12, 2019 at 7:03 pm

No. We have a large house and I want her to be able to save her money.


Amanda Woodward July 12, 2019 at 8:37 pm

I think allowing your daughter to live with you is a nice way to support her. You have probably taught both of your kids some nice frugal skills. I know I love reading about them.


Nan July 13, 2019 at 1:21 am

I was just thinking it would help with expenses for younger son. Is this his senior year? I’m thinking he will live at home after college graduation too so guess it will even out.


Christine July 12, 2019 at 2:21 pm

1. I cashed in my cans and bottles which I have been saving for a couple of months. These include finds from my walks and hikes, empties from get togethers and ones given to us. These are minus the tabs from the tops which I save for a friend who donates them to Shriners. I received $5.35 for my efforts.
2. The above mentioned friend invited me to her house on a lake to swim last night. Great exercise and a fun and inexpensive way to beat the heat.
3. Tore up some old holey towels for rags. My paper towel use has shrunk dramatically and it’s rare for me to purchase any.
4. I am surprised by what customers leave in the Take a Penny Leave a Penny container at work. People throw their change in there which sometimes consists of quarters, dimes and nickels. I must be from a different planet. I bother to pick up pennies off the street but I guess things have changed.
4. My squash plants are coming along beautifully with no threat from the woodchuck. He would decimate them if they were in the back of the house. HA ha Mr. Woodchuck…they’re hidden in the front yard.
5. Reading up a storm with my free time while DH hikes the Appalachian Trail.


Christine July 12, 2019 at 2:34 pm

That reading storm consists only of library books. The library…my free book store.


Katy July 12, 2019 at 7:02 pm

I love your turn of phrase. “Reading storm” for the win!


Jennifer July 12, 2019 at 8:22 pm

4. I can relate. I was pushing my buggy back to buggy barn at Aldi today and a guy asked me for it. He didn’t offer me a quarter or anything. I said kindly said no thank you I am getting my quarter back. He scoffed at me like I was doing something rude. If you haven’t been to Aldi before you put a quarter in and it releases a grocery buggy and when you return it, you get your quarter back. He acted like he was doing me a favor by taking my buggy. Maybe he just didn’t know but I was having a hot flash and when I am flashing, people need to tread lightly.


Jennifer July 12, 2019 at 8:24 pm

What we call a grocery buggy here in the South are also called carts or trolleys in others places. You all probably knew that though.


Lisa M. July 12, 2019 at 9:24 pm

Jennifer – Never lived in the South & was unaware that carts are called buggys. I learned something today. I typically have someone come up holding out a quarter when I am pushing my cart back to Aldi. I have encountered people without change asking me for a quarter & have suggested that they go in to the store & request change, as I have no extra quarters with me. I would have done the same thing you did if someone asked for my cart without offering a quarter. Right there with ya, sister.


Jennifer July 13, 2019 at 5:50 am

That’s why I love the comments section. So many regional tidbits!

Jann July 12, 2019 at 4:13 pm

Had a patient out of town and hit the thrift which yielded an inexpensive find that will sell for over $150 on ebay.
Scheduled a second visit with patient on way to meet with friends-company will pay for mileage,travel time,and visit and the remaining miles I pay for. Win win.
Carried lunch and a drink so I did not have to spend $$ on calorie-laden lunch and drink.
Home to dinner of a leftover pasta dish I made earlier in the week.
Will head up to read my library book and hit the sack!


AuntiAli July 12, 2019 at 9:55 pm

Forgot to mention that my daughter got a free slurpee yesterday from 7-11. On July 11th they have smaller than small slurpee cups that you can get your slurpee in. I’m all for free and it was on our way.


Bethany July 12, 2019 at 10:03 pm

Zero miles today.
Made bone broth and used it to make lunch and dinner.
Friend left watermelon for us and we added it to lunch and dinner.
Since I lost quite a bit of weight I listed some of my clothes for sale.
Reached out to the plumeria society about the junk all over my plumerias. I thought they might be a lost cause, but they said it is spider mites. I followed orders to snap off all the leaves and to treat with a spray. I had some on hand from a garage sale. Fingers crossed!!!


ouvickie July 13, 2019 at 5:09 am

1) I took the morning off, on Thursday, so I could make the 50% off sale at the Thrift store close to my office. I was hoping to get the Reel Mower I saw a few days before, but another man raced to it before anyone else could touch it. Saved myself $20. Instead I found a few tops to replace some that are wearing out and need to be disposed of. One was a pretty Vera Wang – score! Total spent a little over $8.
2) I gave blood on Wednesday and received a free voucher to the Amusement & Water park where my daughter has passes for her family. Free fun is always welcome! Plus, I received a comfortable, blue cotton t-shirt with “Summer Vibes Saves Lives” emblazoned on it. Free advertising for the Blood Institute and free clothing for me.
3) I stopped to buy a few things at the grocers last evening to get us through the next week. I tried to make certain and hit the sale items for what I needed. Spent $32. We’re averaging less than $200 for food each month for the two of us.
4) I found a two pack of the handset batteries, for our wireless AT&T landline phone, for less than $7 online.
5) I’m listening to Melinda Gate’s book on audio “The Moment of Lift”. So far, it’s a great book. I’m really impressed with the amount of research she does for the projects they support.


Laura in Sydney July 14, 2019 at 12:32 pm

So interesting about the blood – I am due to donate this morning, but there is no payment of any kind for this service here in Australia (I will get a very nice extra breakfast on the premises though).


Mand01 July 14, 2019 at 1:03 pm

Honestly, I think it’s better that way. Some things shouldn’t be about money.


Vickey July 15, 2019 at 4:11 pm

The amusement park tickets and similar freebies are often courtesy of businesses that donate in support of the blood bank’s efforts.
But I do understand where you’re coming from.


Mand01 July 15, 2019 at 7:25 pm

I’m not critical of you in any way for accepting the gift for donating blood. If it’s offered, of course you would take it.

Momma L July 13, 2019 at 6:12 am

Celebrated our anniversary this week:
1. Relaxed at home and watched movies the first night. Resting is #1 on our list right now!
2. Went to lunch instead of dinner the next day. Drank water, ordered what we don’t know how to cook at home. Went to a local place endorsed by Guy F. Didn’t disappoint!
3. Neighbors invited us out on their pontoon for a sunset ride on the creek. I told them it is our Anniversary Cruise, so they played free music from Pandora the whole time. Brought some veggies and hummus and beverages, they brought food too.
4. Didn’t buy a card. DH didn’t mind.
5. DH insists on buying me flowers. So instead of a florist, he went and bought precut flowers from the grocery store and used our own vase. Of course I will compost them when they die.

Staying married, working out our quirky differences, having each other’s back at all times. Very frugal. I remember the cost of my first divorce.


Cynthia July 13, 2019 at 6:23 am

I love it! Divorce is VERY expensive…


Minimalsteph July 16, 2019 at 7:54 am

It’s expensive because it’s worth it most of the time


Lindsey July 13, 2019 at 11:38 am

A long time ago I read a book that talked about how one could financially recover from a divorce in one’s early 20s, but after that a divorce will impact your income/savings/retirement until the day you die because you just cannot make up for such a huge financial loss—not just splitting the property but paying for an attorney and so on.


Cynthia July 13, 2019 at 3:20 pm

After a tumultuous marriage and horrible breakdown of same my ex and I came to what was left of our senses when we faced divorce, which might have been the only thing we did well in the last ten years of our heartbreaking marriage. But by deciding that our son could not do well unless both parents did well we were able to work out the terms of our divorce (after 26 years) together) and only paid an attorney to draw up the forms for what we agreed. I actually paid his bills for a while, though he was the one who cheated on me, but it ended up well and we are on honorable terms to this day.


Christine July 14, 2019 at 10:55 am

Cynthia, kudos to you and your ex for putting aside what sounds like some very serious differences and taking the high road for yourselves and your son’s well being. My parents were divorced when my sister and I were young kids and I am so thankful they came to an amicable relationship. Looking back and knowing what I know now about their marriage, I am amazed that they were able to do this for their kids, and hopefully, for themselves and their peace of mind. I can tell you that when your son looks back, he will be so grateful you were able to do this. You have made his life so much better by that one intention.


Cynthia July 14, 2019 at 1:26 pm

Christine– thank you for this!

A. Marie July 13, 2019 at 2:53 pm

Congrats to you and your DH, Momma L. Workin’ it out is what it’s all about.

And what Lindsey says about the relative costs of divorce at different ages is right on. My own DH was married briefly to someone else in his 20s, and he has described it as a “no kids, no property, no regrets” split. Once kids and property are in the mix, it’s another story altogether.


Mary in Maryland July 14, 2019 at 1:45 pm

I had a “no kids, no regrets” (except for having married him) divorce at 30. I lit him have the money and the property, because that was all he cared about. While we were still married I used to lie in bed and imagine newspaper headlines “Park Heights couple found dead of mutual irritation.”


Dusty July 15, 2019 at 6:18 am

Ha ha…luv it…
I went through a divorce after 33 yrs of marriage and while i have nothing…..I’m free…can sit in my pjs…eat ice cream for dinner and binge watch real housewives..without being criticized….it was worth it


Mand01 July 13, 2019 at 3:25 pm

Congratulations. It’s our anniversary this week as well.


A. Marie July 13, 2019 at 11:14 am

FFT, Passive Frugality Edition:

Amy Dacyczyn (The Tightwad Gazette’s author and the mother of our round-the-world frugal country) used to refer to not spending money as “passive frugality.” Herewith, my five most recent efforts in this direction:

(1) DH and I don’t even like avocados. Imagine the savings, especially at the prices noted by Katy.

(2) I mislaid my sunglasses (the type that wrap around regular glasses) rather thoroughly yesterday and was so close to giving up on them that I was pricing replacements online. Finally found them on top of one of my two black plastic composters in the back yard, where I’d placed them while pulling a few weeds. At least $20 saved.

(3) One of the composters was a donation from a departing neighbor some time ago, and DH paid $10 for the other one at a garage sale, also some time ago. All kitchen scraps go into these and simply disappear, to emerge some months later as usable compost (which hasn’t attracted any attention from our Wild Kingdom–another benefit).

(4) I don’t color my hair (I worked for every one of those gray streaks, dammit) and don’t wear makeup. I do use moisturizer (a small tube of which lasts approximately forever) and sunblock, in the interests of preventing wrinkles and skin cancer.

(5) Finally, it’s wild black raspberry time in Upstate NY again, and we have a good crop in our back 40, thanks to the spring rains. I’ve picked one quart already and am about to suit up and go pick some more. (The suiting-up part is crucial. As I learned to my cost last summer, Lyme disease is totally non-frugal. But I’m glad to report at the 1-year mark that the antibiotics were effective and I’ve had no Lyme-related symptoms since then.)


Lisa M. July 14, 2019 at 6:36 am

A. Marie, Re: Your #1. Sadly, I am probably one of the biggest avocado fans on the planet. I also had calculated the cost of Katy’s organic avocados & was shocked, especially since large Hass avocados are on sale for 69 cents each at Aldi this week. I’ll bet she had some frugal deal or hack that she didn’t mention.

Your #4: I quit dying my hair years ago once my DD became a toddler. I continued to dye it when she was an infant as thought it would seem odd for a woman with gray hair to have a baby! The gray became increasingly dye resistant & they had to bake it on under the hair dryer to get it to take. No thanks to frequently paying large amounts of $ to get chemicals baked on to my scalp!


Jennifer July 13, 2019 at 12:03 pm

I have had a productive day and it feels good to finally check things off my to-do list.
1. Sewed up 2 bras that the wire was poking through on. In the past I likely would have thrown them away but they were in excellent condition except for this and I was determined to at least try. We will see how long my patch job holds.
2. Picked wild black raspberries from my yard. Production is way down from last year, but I will take what I can get.
3. No spend day today and yesterday the only money spent was $6.99 + tip for a haircut for my dd at Great Clips. I had been holding out for a sale and finally they had one.
4. Dd that works at Starbucks brought home her weekly free bag of coffee for dh and also a boxed lunch that expired yesterday but no one bought. Other dd enjoyed that for lunch today.
5. Spent a long time pouring over our budget and finally things will be easing up now that 1 child is out of gymnastics. She is going to college, so we have that expense, but not paying $447 a month for her to do gymnastics is huge. I think we can finally start paying extra on our car loan again. Hoping to have it paid off by the end of the year. $3000 left!


Alexandra July 13, 2019 at 6:09 pm

1. A few friends and family members are joining me in a “no-spend week” starting Monday
2. I had an exciting Saturday night doing inventory of fridge, pantry and freezer, thinking I might need to pick up a few things before Monday. Embarrassed at the amount of food we have!
3. Got past embarrassment and made lists With titles “Mexican”, “Italian”, “Indian”, “Asian” and “Mediterranean. Listed all applicable ingredients under each like pinto beans and pickled jalapeños went under Mexican. Coconut milk went under both Indian and Asian. Lots of ideas for meal planning now.
4. I will be on the road a lot this coming week so know I must plan well for carrying lunches and snacks
5. DH and I both worked 11 hour day on Friday but came home and made dinner: heated up homemade soup and cheese quesadilla. Very proud of ourselves


Avery July 14, 2019 at 3:37 pm

Frugalish while abroad, so yes this is consumerism but more consciously
1.)Public transportation! There’s this really cheap awesome app called blablacar and I’ve been able to get long distance rides for super cheap even compared to a bus. For example, I arrived in Ronda, Spain- a 2 hour trip- for just 10 euros! I have also been taking buses and metros (or walking if feasible) instead of Ubers or taxis.
2.) I donated a few things at a thrift store to lighten my load while receiving a discount (but only if I spend so much urgh.) I have bought a few things 2ndhand here, but all things I actually needed and really liked.
3.) I am an Aupair, so I am not paying for accomodation or food. I try to eat with the family as much as possible to save money.
4.) I made the decision to instead of traveling somewhere far every free weekend and barely getting to spend time there, I would stay in my region and get to know the culture and language better. With this, I have already attended some unique local events such as hiking at night , and I will be going to a local soccer match , a swing festival, and a talent show this upcoming week.
5.) I didn’t buy a LearJet, although I am abroad haha.


rebecca July 15, 2019 at 6:03 am

This sounds fantastic! Travel is so important.


Ann July 28, 2019 at 4:28 pm

The best I can come up with on the jealousy is “score loser”. Meh. I hope more people attempt this challenge.


Mand01 July 12, 2019 at 11:25 pm

Haha, no. Just typing on an iPhone without my glasses.


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