Five Frugal Things

by Katy on October 28, 2020 · 100 comments

  1. My husband and I have been busy finishing repairs and then painting our bedroom over the past few weeks. This is far from a “Frugal Thing” as the project involved more than just a “lick of paint.” (Any Wallace and Gromit fans out there?) Anyway, we finally slept in our bedroom last night for the first time in two months and readers, it was glorious.

    I guess we did save a tremendous amount of money by not hiring out any of the jobs which include electrical wiring, plaster repair and painting. So I change my mind, this was absolutely a “Frugal Thing!” Also, beyond a new sets of sheets, (which were actually a generous gift from my mother) I didn’t use redoing the bedroom as rationalization to buy any stuff whatsoever. It’s actually the complete opposite as I used it as an excuse to get rid of stuff.

    I’ll be writing up a full “before and after” blog post in the near future, but for now let me just share that any project that takes a room from “hot dog” to “dove grey” is a guaranteed winner. Please enjoy the above teaser photo!

  2. I went thrifting to a couple different Goodwills with my college friend Maura and ended up picking up a random assortment of items which quickly sold on eBay. Like this Bushnell speed gun and this 1999 Michael Graves for Target candlestick. Seriously, so very random!

    People in Oregon and Washington are mostly really good about wearing masks and social distancing, so I’ve felt safe the few times that I’ve hit up my local Goodwills. We always drive our own vehicles and then keep our distance while hanging out. It’s a watered down form of socializing, but necessary and responsible in the Covid era.

  3. I gave away a number of items through my Buy Nothing Group including four standard wine glasses, (I’d thrifted four artisan made glasses which were the same as a long-broken pair that my husband and I received as a wedding gift in nineteen-ought-four) a cute leather purse I never wore and then an unused kitchen knife that no one here remembers buying.

  4. My husband and I continue to hit up Su Casa Tacqueria for $1 takeout tacos on Tuesdays, I gave my mother a new-in-package (but thrifted) hummingbird feeder for her birthday, I sold two more pairs of my husband’s old prescription glasses on eBay, I listened to a couple more audiobooks through the library’s free Libby app, (Island of the Blue Dolphins and Evvie Drake Starts Over) I ran into the Lloyd Center Dollar Tree store to stock up on shampoo and conditioner as it’s practically next door to the Goodwill where Maura and I were thrifting and lastly I grabbed two huge terra cotta planters that a neighbor put out for free.

  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet or a super disease spreading, debt ridden or vulgar gold-plated apartment in the sky.

Katy Wolk-Stanley    

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

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{ 100 comments… read them below or add one }

Jill A October 28, 2020 at 1:01 pm

1. I have been looking for warm tall winter boots for my daughters. I had ordered some at the end of last winter but they ran small so I returned them. I’ve been looking online and waiting for a good sale. Anyways I was in Goodwill the other day and I found the same boot but slightly older style (Sorel Tivoli II vs IV). They were slightly too big for one daughter but with thick socks she is able$17 vs $150. I also ordered a pair off of Ebay for my other daughter that were about half price. So I’ve save $200 on boots (not that I was ever going to pay that much).
2. My daughter gave me a home haircut which looks pretty good. It doesn’t have any layers as I would prefer but it still looks good. This is the second time she’s cut my hair since the beginning of the plague. I also waxed my own eyebrows.
3. My daughters and I bathed both dogs in the driveway . I hooked a hose up to my laundry room sink so we could use warm water. It’s getting pretty cold here so this will be the last “home” bath they will get. This saved us $20. I also vacuumed and cleaned my car at home.
4. We’ve been cooking at home for the most part and finding free entertainment. My daughter’s boyfriend made us wings and fries and fancy drinks the other night for dinner. I had coffee with friends on their porch when I delivered some beeswax they needed for a project. We’ve been taking nice walks and visiting the dog park.
5. I’ve been combining errands and driving my hybrid car. I’ve sold several items on Ebay and reused boxes and packaging materials for shipping. I refilled an ink cartridge at Costco and bought bulk spices at the health food store. Daughter’s boyfriend is an auto mechanic and was able to change daughter’s oil for free.


Jill A October 28, 2020 at 1:05 pm

I really ought to proof read my comments.

#1 My daughter is able to wear the boots and I paid $17 vs. $150. I forgot to mention they look brand new.


Jill A October 29, 2020 at 4:06 am

6. I can’t believe I forgot to mention that my daughters and I hand delivered our absentee ballots to our local clerk while on our way to the library.


A. Marie October 28, 2020 at 1:23 pm

Um, Katy, I must respectfully challenge your assertion in your #3 that you were married in 1904. But if this was the actual date and you’ve got some fabulous frugal anti-aging serum you’re not telling us about, I think you ought to spill the beans. 🙂

And along the same lines, DH and I will be marking 41 years of legal hitchitude on Friday. The Bestest Neighbors, who had the nerve actually to get married on Halloween 33 years ago, will be hosting a modest mutual celebration at some point.


Mary in Maryland October 28, 2020 at 2:18 pm

We got married on November 1. Very hard to find a restaurant for our dinner with out of town relatives and friends the night before.


Cindy in the South October 28, 2020 at 4:31 pm

happy anniversary


MB in MN October 28, 2020 at 1:28 pm

Katy: Beautiful bedroom makeover! Looking forward to seeing the “before and after” post.


1. Cleaned the oven with a pumice stone, along with some vinegar and baking soda. Very pleased with the results.

2. Cleaned the bottom of the dishwasher, including the filter. I’m pretty sure that’s where the term “gag me” must have originated.

3. Husband works at a cut-your-own Christmas tree farm and he gets to keep any money that he finds from the previous season while he’s out working in the fields. This year he has collected around $50 in all.

4. Enjoyed our annual week-long cabin stay on the North Shore of Lake Superior. Ate a combo of our own food, takeout, and restaurant dine-in during off-peak times when there weren’t (m)any other people there. Spent far less money this year.

5. Harvested herbs for drying, including the oregano which I often forget about because I ripped it out of the garden several years ago due to its invasiveness and transplanted it far, far away from the house.


Norma Burke October 29, 2020 at 9:34 am

I hate to be a nay-sayer but you have to be careful eating in restaurants. My husband was an HVAC mechanic and he said even though you are sitting far away from each, if someone coughs and the virus gets into the HVAC system, it could come down on you. They have also mentioned this on tv,


MB in MN October 29, 2020 at 12:21 pm

Norma: I appreciate your caring and sharing that info.


Shona October 29, 2020 at 12:38 pm

Yes, Norma, thank you for this information. I have a couple friends who are OK eating in restaurants, I am not. I was set to break plans with these friends because they wanted to meet at a restaurant. (side note- my husband is a nurse who was working in a COVID unit in the spring/ early summer) One friend has a house with a deck overlooking a river and with the fall color! She suggested we get take out, a nice bottle of wine, and visit there. Pandemic or no pandemic, I’ll take a river view in the fall any day over the inside of a restaurant (even though it’s ultimately about the people you are with).


Katy in Africa October 28, 2020 at 1:37 pm

Looking forward to the bedroom post!
1. Today was a meatless day:
Breakfast – oatmeal
Snack – Cookies and peanuts
Lunch – Tex-Mex beans and rice (this did have chicken broth in it now that I think of it, so not vegetarian)
Supper – Fry bread topped with leftover Tex- Mex beans and rice and cucumbers and dip. I have to admit though, it was supposed to be burritos, but somehow I started mixing g the fry bread recipe2 thinking it was the tortilla one!
2. We played a game as a family, free fun.
3. I was given a BUNCH of peanuts and some corn.
4. The animals (cat, dog and monkey) happily ate the leftover beans and rice as well.
5. Part of the oil I used for the fry bread was oil I have previously done fry bread in. I like to strain it, then put it in an old peanut butter jar writing on the side when I last used the oil and for what.


Cindy in the South October 28, 2020 at 4:36 pm

A pet monkey in Africa. Wow, what an interesting life you must have! That is fabulous!


Katy in Africa October 29, 2020 at 1:16 pm

Yes, the monkey is definitely the funniest of the pets, but the most annoying too! Lol


Ava October 28, 2020 at 1:48 pm

1. Cooked and cooked and cooked some more. We have both had back injuries and didn’t want to get out of the house for anything. I did go pick up carry out today for a very welcome break. We will have leftovers until they are gone.
2. Mended 3 masks. Who knew when all this started that we would be wearing masks long enough that they would actually need some repairs? Two just needed an adjustment in the fit and the other had the elastic eaten off by a cat.
3. The mask repair nudged me to start on my big pile of other mending. So far, I have fixed a reusable grocery bag, and altered 2 T shirts and a pair of leggings.
4. In the past, we have bought marrow bones for the dogs. They have been chewed hollow and smooth long ago. Every once in a while, I stuff a little peanut butter into each end of the old bones and hand them out again.
5. I still have a few cherry tomatoes that are slowly ripening. Whenever I have enough, I cook them until they burst, pulverize them in the food processor and freeze them in pint jars for soups and chili.


Cindy in the South October 28, 2020 at 2:09 pm

1. Since we are under a tropical storm/hurricane warning and widespread power outages are forecast due to high wind, I rushed home from work and put in oven, the turkey legs I was gonna cook at Thanksgiving. Well, at least I will have a nice evening meal. 2. I move my vehicles as far away from the large tree in my neighbor’s yard since we were also advised to do that. I also moved them near the road so if the front yard floods, I can get out. No car repair is frugal to me. 3. We were also advised to not sleep in any bedrooms near large trees because of wind causing trees to crash on houses. Since both of my bedrooms are under large trees, I will sleep on couch. Staying alive is frugal. 4. I walked a couple of days this week. 5. I filled my cars with gas because if the power goes out the gas pumps won’t work.


Cindy in the South October 28, 2020 at 2:35 pm

Hurricane edition continued: 6. Texted relatives who live in New Orleans, trying to make sure they left. Modern communication is relatively cheap and a bargain, especially when communicating with kinfolks who think a category 2 hurricane is grilling out weather and time for a hurricane party….lol. Louisiana folks tend to be a live and let live bunch. I may have added a couple of curse words to underscore my concern. 7. I gathered an assortment of young fresh greens from my front yard, dandelion greens, mustard greens, turnip greens, and collard greens before they are drowned in the rains. I made a nice salad of them with olives, and made a homemade ranch type dressing. I ate this while waiting on the e turkey legs to cook. 8. I pulled out the solar cooker, that I will use tomorrow to cook the turkey breast in the freezer, if we lose power. This was also supposed to be part of the Thanksgiving meal. Live and let live. 8. I am happily eyeing the Halloween.candy that will be consumed tomorrow if we lose power.


Cindy in the South October 28, 2020 at 2:40 pm

yet more of hurricane frugal edition: 9. I am charging my phone now. I also located my long lost car charger. 10. I changed the batteries in my flashlight because it is so muggy you can almost eat the air, hotter than he@& and I do not want to have to burn candles.


Marie October 28, 2020 at 7:12 pm

Take care!


Cindy in the South October 29, 2020 at 6:56 am

after hurricane update. Neighbor’s tree fell on my house. Major damage but I am alive and well. Town south of me, Citronelle, , the Mayor said it was destroyed. Apparently cell tower still functioning here so I can communicate.


Shevaun October 29, 2020 at 8:26 am

Cindy in the South,

How can we help?

Love, Shevaun


A. Marie October 29, 2020 at 9:42 am

What Shevaun said: x2. Please let us know.

Lisa M. October 29, 2020 at 12:01 pm

What Shevaun & A. Marie said. Something like a Go Fund Me page for urgent needs like shelter & food? We may know each other only online but please consider using our support in this time of crisis.

Shevaun October 29, 2020 at 3:08 pm

Hey Katie!
Yeah, you! Katie! You know, you, who brought us together here and gave us a space to love and encourage one another!!
You have all the user data on this comment page. Would you please contact Cindy in the South and tell her we want to help. No creepy internet weirdness. Just friendship. And then, can you help make that happen in a not-creepy-internet way?

Five Frugal Things: 1. Hope. 2. Love. 3. Compassion. 4. Empathy. 5. Community.

Cindy in the South October 30, 2020 at 5:47 am

I have insurance but thank y’all so much. Yall are so sweet. I think local food pantries need money and I suggest donating there. Love y’all!

Christine October 29, 2020 at 2:22 pm

Oh no Cindy! So sorry about your house. Good to hear you are alive and unharmed though. So many hurricanes this year! Scary times we’re living in right now. Please take good care.


Cindy in the South October 28, 2020 at 9:42 pm

Hurricane update in real time since I do not dare go out my door and power going off and on: eye is apparently passing within a couple of miles of me. Still Category one hurricane strength winds. Trees going down all around. Backyard under water completely ( this is not unusual, it is flat as a pancake in the town I live and really cannot drain fast), front yard is not under water. This is more of a wind event so far. I am so hoping the neighbor’s mulberry tree that is on the edge of our property line and is over my house, does not fall on it. Oops, power out again. Looks like it will stay out. Will update when I can. Weather gal Cindy ( because I do not have anything else to do in middle of a storm….lol)


Patricia Koernig October 29, 2020 at 12:04 am

Hope you are safe, and well.
Sending you love.


Jennifer October 29, 2020 at 2:50 am

I remember weathering a hurricane as a kid and it was scary. And eery when we walked outside when the eye of the storm was over to check things out. Hopefully your house doesn’t flood and no trees come down too close.. Good luck and stay safe!


Bee October 29, 2020 at 3:53 am

I hope you are well and you have avoided any significant damage. The storms are frightening.


Cindy in the South October 29, 2020 at 7:01 am

Bee: neighbor’s tree fell on my house. Major damage but I am alive. You live in Florida so you totally understand the hurricane drill. We shrug it iff and pick up the pieces.


Susie's Daughter October 29, 2020 at 7:32 am

Cindy – my thoughts are with you and all in the path of Zeta. So very sorry to hear about the damage to your house and so very glad you are safe.

Bee October 29, 2020 at 12:17 pm

Oh I’m sooooo sorry. During Hurricane Matthew, we dealt with a tree on my son’s roof. I wish I was there to help. I hope that you recover quickly. Sending good thoughts your way!!!!

Jill A October 30, 2020 at 4:37 am

So sorry about your home. Stay safe.

A. Marie October 29, 2020 at 4:12 am

My mother went through Hurricane Andrew in the Miami area in 1992. Although she had some help from my aunt and cousins, nothing about either the storm itself or its aftermath was a joking matter. Adding my wishes to others that you and yours make it through this one OK.


Lisa M. October 29, 2020 at 7:32 am

Cindy – So horrible to learn about the damage to your house. Glad you are safe & hopefully continue that way. We are thinking about you!


Lindsey October 29, 2020 at 12:16 pm

Ditto what Lisa said.


Cindy in the South October 31, 2020 at 10:06 am

Latest latest tree update: Tree folks just got tree. I will give y’all a long update next time Katy posts a new post. So happy that they are chopping tree up now.

Trish in Colorado November 2, 2020 at 7:02 am

Sending you love and light! So sorry you are going through all this with your house and the storm blasting through. I am impressed by your positiveness and do enjoy reading, glad it also gives you a nice distraction! 😉
May you be out of this soon!


Roberta October 28, 2020 at 2:22 pm

1. Did some mending as well, on an old canvas grocery bag.
2. Made dinner last night, after filling out our ballots. It was a long process, since we discussed all the issues with our kids (18 and 15). My son voted for the first time! My husband suggested we get burritos out, but instead I threw together Grocery Outlet pierogi, veggie sausages and fried cabbage. Faster, cheaper and healthier!
3. Stopped by Goodwill to pick up pieces for my Halloween costume. I am going as a plague doctor (got the mask from etsy. They pay for carbon offsets for all their shipping!). The black skirt and black sweater I bought will end up being regular clothes after Halloween.
4. Got a new-to-us car for my daughter, who should get her permit next month. It’s a 1996 with a manual transmission, so she’ll have that skill for international travel. In exchange we will take them out to dinner tonight, at an outdoor restaurant. One of the benefits of living in Southern California!
5. Still knitting Christmas gifts as I work as a substitute teacher. It’s not the most exciting job, but I’m making it possible for someone who is at high risk to stay home, and that’s good.


Mary in Maryland October 28, 2020 at 2:30 pm

1. Good looking bedroom! I have a matching chest of drawers that I got at an estate sale for $50 in 1987. I always thought I would buy really good furniture later…apparently not.
2. COVID restrictions have eased up just enough here that we’ve done teeth cleaning, colonoscopy, and mammograms in the past week. No co-pays with Medicare.
3. We spent a week at the shore with another couple who are as careful as we are. Lots of walking on the beach, all meals cooked in our rental. First vacation away in a couple years. Hardest thing was not using a bathroom for the three hour drive.
4. Darned socks, mended a dog blanket, and did some sewing for a neighbor who then gifted me with a bottle of wine.
5. Chopped the outer cabbage leaves, the kale stems, and some iffy broccoli and tossed them into an instant pot recipe for Jambalaya.
6. We’ve taken combining errands to a new level—a neighbor and I check before shopping and pick up things for one another.
7. I did buy a Hungry Harvest produce box. Happy with the assortment and seat of my pants meal planning.


Juhli October 28, 2020 at 3:35 pm

Lovely bedroom color!

I’ve been cooking and baking now that I can stand comfortably again after foot surgery. Today was homemade brownies instead of Starbucks cookie.
Decide I could modify an old afghan to make it warmer and more comfortable rather than buy a new one. It has some open weave areas that I am hand sewing shut for a nice textured effect.
Wanting a new raincoat and winter coat but what with not going anywhere during the pandemic decided to use what I have.
After 3 months of foot surgery recovery the house really needs a deep cleaning. A neighbor hired someone to spend the day cleaning hers. I adapted a cleaning schedule found on line to suit our home and am tackling it room by room.
As usual cooking almost all meals at home with just splitting a take out sub sandwich this past week for a break. We use all leftovers too.


Christine October 29, 2020 at 2:25 pm

Best wishes for continuing recovery and healing from your foot surgery. Take care.


Shona October 28, 2020 at 3:53 pm

Wallace & Gromit fan raising her had over here!

1) Kinda frugal: I went to an area discount shoe store (think Nordstrom Rack without the crazy shoes) and bought 2 pr of Dansko boots. One was $49.99 ($170 on Zappos) and the other $59.99 ($160 on Zappos). I really could not decide, I lerved them both. This was an intentional purchase as Iwas without good winter boots and both filled this gap.

2) To offset buying the above boots I sold my other Dansko boots (not good winter boots as we get a lot of rain and they are suede) from my closet on Poshmark within hours of listing them. My first experience on the site and a very positive one.

3) To *hopefully* further offset buying the above boots I went through my closet to thin it out a bit and listed more items in my Poshmark “closet”

4) .39 cents found in a parking lot in one swoop. Just when I thought I would have a FFT comment without reporting any found money- there they were, all those pretty unclaimed coins.

5) Loving working from home, although I cannot completely do my job from home, I have worked it out so I’m in the office 2 days & at home 2 days. That’s 50 miles I’m not driving each week.


kate October 28, 2020 at 5:00 pm

congratulations on painting your bedroom. it’s so nice to have a change!
my frugal things as of late:
1. got a lot of high end samples and make up on my local buy nothing group. score.
2. made a large batch of spaghetti sauce so i could eat a lot of polenta/spaghetti – it made about 5 meals.
3. i’ve been getting late night energy bursts and am using them to declutter. i listed some of my declutters on ebay/etsy and the others are going in the donation bag.
4. honestly my whole covid life has been super frugal, compared to ‘normal’ times. so i’ve nearly paid off all my credit card debt. one more payment and it should be done (not that it was a whole lot to begin with, but it was hanging around and driving me bonkers.)
5. i rearranged my furniture and some belongings and it made my apartment feel fresh and new. i didn’t have to buy anything new (tho i do need some new to me/used furniture honestly, for now this will suffice.)


betta from daVille October 30, 2020 at 3:14 pm

Congratulations on paying off your credit card! I’ve never carried a balance on them, but I have friends who do, and it pains me greatly to hear how much they end up paying in interest.


Kara October 28, 2020 at 5:44 pm

The paint looks awesome! And yes, I’m a Wallace and Gromit fan! “Cheese, Gromit” is a well-used phrase in our house.

We have been laboring over a back garden project, sheet mulching, underplanting fruit trees with other edible plants, etc. My husband just picked up scrap wood from our Buy Nothing group for building a strawberry planter.

I’ve slowly been filling my shop again, and making fabric twine into baskets. I found some more scraps of a beautiful and very popular fabric, which I made into a set of coasters and am just about finished with a little zippered pouch with that fabric as the lining.

I met an old friend part way between our houses. We have both moved from where we used to live in the same town. We ate out, but I saved half of my salad for tomorrow, keeping it in good shape by asking for the dressing on the side, and only putting dressing on the portion I ate today. We ate sitting in her open Vanagon, which was very fun.

Our favorite neighbor’s son is turning 8 tomorrow. We gave him a bag of mini Twix bars. Only cost me a bit over a dollar, but he will really enjoy them! I sewed a handmade tag, which he will appreciate, since he’s the most enthusiastic student in my kids sewing group.

I wore a blouse today that is really too small. But since it looks like new, and is J Crew brand, I will be listing it on Ebay after I have washed and ironed it.


Jennifer October 28, 2020 at 6:07 pm

I love the photo preview. We put in hardwoods and painted our walls a light gray this summer and it really is a nice look and very in right now.
1 – We’ve been really good about limiting eating out and packing lunches. Our school is providing free lunch and breakfast to all students right now so my ds has been getting lunch every day at school.
2 – Dd decided to start back to gymnastics and just compete for her high school. She was in need of some new leotards. I found one on a resale page for half price and will continue looking for more second hand. She has enough to get started anyway.
3 – I made chicken stock out of bones from our CSA last weekend. I made homemade soup Monday and have more broth in the freezer. I double boiled the bones to get more broth.
4 – I’m still picking cherry tomatoes and green beans from my garden which is crazy. I have hundreds of green cherry tomatoes out there. I’m going to carefully watch the weather and cover if there is a frost and hopefully I can get them to last a couple more weeks.
5 – I have asked the kids for their Christmas lists and dh and I decided to stick to a strict budget. We are also revamping how we do stockings and they will be minimal. My kids are 16-22 but we still do stockings – I love filling them, but it has gotten really pricey as I won’t buy junk. This year we will cap it at $25 a stocking. Socks, book, and maybe $5-10 of dollar store items. Easy-peasy.

Frugal Fail – all of our kitchen appliances have been on the fritz for a few months now. Dh keeps working on them and they have been sputtering along. But in reality the dishwasher doesn’t get anything clean unless we essentially clean them off first. The stove burners do not turn off sometimes and we have to fiddle with the knobs repeatedly to get them to go off. The fridge is not cold enough and the freezer is too cold. I had to throw out several things today that should not have been bad yet. Ugh!

Within the past year we have had to replace the washer and dryer and water heater. Why does it come in waves? Those on replacing the kitchen appliances cheaply? I don’t know where to start.


janine October 28, 2020 at 7:15 pm

We have been through the same thing. Sometimes scratch and dent places have pretty good appliances but my kitchen space requires special order $$$ stuff. It also doesn’t seem to last as long as I had hoped when I wrote those checks. Good luck!


Candy October 29, 2020 at 1:16 am

My daughter’s fridge died Saturday and our first stop was our local appliance store that features scratch and dent. The basic white box that keeps things cold was marked up $250 more than when we shopped last summer. And the salesman couldn’t even pretend sympathy. Big box had one basic model in stock, everything else had delivery dates ranging from December to never. But the salesperson felt our pain. DD bought the one at Big Box and felt lucky to get it. I’ve never worked harder to spend money.


Barbara October 29, 2020 at 7:43 am

If you think you’ll need to purchase any appliance, order sooner than later. My washer died and I may get my new one by 12/1. Until then, I have a lovely friend who lets me use hers. All manufacturers have backlogged orders due to earlier Covid related factory shutdowns.
Good luck!


cathy October 29, 2020 at 10:38 am

I have a similar “problem” with Christmas stockings because I won’t buy junk just to fill them up. But we approach it from the opposite side: We basically do stockings only, so we try to make them special (though practicality, like wool socks, is also part of the deal). It’s rare that there are separate gifts. But we’re also a mixed-faith family, so there are a couple Hanukkah gifts thrown into the holiday mix. My kids (22 and 18) told me last year that their favorite part of holiday gift giving is the stockings.


Shona October 29, 2020 at 12:11 pm

Scratch and dent is the way to do! Do a search for one in your area. Where I live (neighboring county outside a major metropolitan city) we have a couple small mom & pop type places. I fear we will need to visit them for a stove fairly soon. Some appliance stores even have scratch and dent areas, that’s where I found my washer. And if you have a Habitat Re-Store in your area, they sometimes have appliances.

My friend is telling me to hang onto mine as long as I can because, like most things, the newer ones just don’t hold up as long, which, again, it sounds like Janine has experienced


Jessica October 31, 2020 at 5:39 am

We put four things plus sweets in our stockings something to wear something to share something to read and something to eat it saves filling up the stocking with plastic junk.


Roberta October 31, 2020 at 7:48 am

We have been filling up the stockings with the small size holiday crackers. They have a paper hat inside, a charade and a bang. We have fun acting out the charade, asking the trivia question, telling a really bad joke — and it fills up our massive, oversized stockings very nicely.

If I had to do it over, I might get smaller stockings.


Trish in Colorado November 2, 2020 at 7:14 am

You might also consider a Home Warranty. Our realtors gifted us that when we bought our last house. Many appliances were old and the hvac system was too. If something cannot be repaired, or parts are not available anymore, they replace your appliances FREE! Might be worth the investment. We had so many claims in the new to us house, they did not renew the policy after the year ended! At least we didn’t go broke that first year, in addition to the house payments!


Vickey November 8, 2020 at 11:52 am

If once frost threatens you clip the entire trusses of cherry tomatoes and hang them indoors in a sunny window, most of them will eventually ripen. We have sometimes had homegrown cherry and full-size tomatoes at Christmas that way, here in our zone 6 northeast home.


Lisa M. October 28, 2020 at 8:04 pm

Quadruple 5FF: Halloween Looms – Is It Fall or Winter?

A preface : My 5 frugal things are 20 this posting as have kept a running list since 10-8 when Katy last posted. Was determined to end up with a multiple of 5.

1. DD & I decorated outside & inside for Halloween (thankfully before the arrival of winter in fall). Straightforward to decorate with items accumulated over the years. Our governor has approved trick-or-treating for our state, so purchased treats @ Aldi that we will enjoy if there are leftovers if we have minimal trick-or-treaters. I plan to wear mask @ door & use glove to distribute.

Also purchased $1.99 pie pumpkin @ Aldi to decorate, eventually carve, then roast the seeds to snack on & bake the flesh for holiday pumpkin pie.

Have been enjoying Netflix nightly for creepy series. Watched “Evil”, “The Haunting of Bly Manor” & “Safe”.

2. After 2nd trip to our county eco-site this fall, used coupon for fast food drive through for DH & myself for meal deals & a coupon for a free ($8) burrito @ a new casual restaurant chain as takeout for DD.

3. Received beautiful lead crystal bowl from a DF as a belated b-day gift. Used free October card from card store to express appreciation for her long-term friendship. Used free card in stash for niece’s b-day.

4. Had a couple of issues with companies not following through, so sent inquiries via Customer Service to work on resolution of both issues. Holding companies accountable to commitments resulted in 1 company to send promised promotional item & another rewards program provided points after changing from texting to emailing receipts.

5. Recent kitchen creations: Ranch Turkey Wraps, Barbecued Treet on Buns, Surprise Slaw, Aegean Salad, Artichoke Cheese ‘n Rice Romanov, Rueben Casserole. Significant grilling prior to major grill cleaning & storage for winter. Trying to use DD’s miscellaneous food items from her apartment.

6. Took advantage of a quiet morning & mended 3 items for DD – 2 items with seam openings & replacement of a button. With heating season here d/t early winter, cleaned & air-dried DD’s humidifier in hopes of extending life of machine. Also ran washing machine through deep clean cycle for same reason.

7. Hopped a ride with DD as she headed to the library to return & recheck books. Dropped property tax payment @ drop box outside of service center to save a stamp, found “Coming Clean” by Kimberly Rae Miller (recommended here by C) during the last 5 minutes the library was open, spotted a dime & penny next to the self-checkout which I gifted to DD as thanks for the ride.

8. Provided transport to airport for DD & her former roommates, as they spent a few days on the beach in CA & stayed in an Airbnb. Would have preferred she stay @ home but recognize difficulty of current social isolation, especially for young adults. Also provided airport pick-up (@ midnight following record-setting snowstorm & unknown airport construction) d/t a missed flight that incurred extra ticket expense. Hmm, hopefully a learned lesson for them.

9. Shopping day savings: 2 cans of canned cat food located on clearance aisle @ big box to treat DD’s cat & electronic coupon for chicken tenders 50% off through gas station perks program to change up lunch routine.

10. Partial frugality: Treated yours truly to shopping @ annual sale @ mega-antiques mall (350 dealers). Have not attended bi-annual event regularly in some years. Preference is to discard @ this juncture in life, so very selective about purchases: unique, small, reasonable price. Found a few treasures @ 20% off. No fast food in the area, so packed lunch (using several items needing to be used) & water & ate in car. Combined trip with stop @ close by pet store for DD’s geckos’ food on return home.

11. Received surprise check from car insurance with refund due to additional rate reductions. Even more shocking it is for DD (late teens) who upgraded from older compact car to slightly newer small SUV. Also received rebate check for free mega box of cereal thanks to The Frugal Girl blog & a small rebate check towards next purchase @ big box home goods store.

12. Rescued tube of my brand toothpaste that DD deposited in the trash. Used for 11 days of additional brushings by eventually cutting open. Need to revisit strategy of cutting container to enable removing additional product with her, even though I recently showed her the trick for obtaining additional lotion from a tube.

13. Made Copy-Cat Panera Squash Soup from scratch & used 3 leftover items in the process. Saved, cleaned & dried squash seeds to add to future pie pumpkin seeds for eventual roasting.

14. Successfully got DD to her clinic to utilize her insurance benefits for annual wellness visit & Flu Mist. Also got DD’s cat in for annual checkup & 2 shots. Used coupon for 1st visit (@ hometown practice) & saved 66% off full cost of initial visit ($46).

15. Facilitated cancellation of DD’s cat’s pet insurance, probably one of largest money saving efforts of entire year. DD signed up independently 15 months ago – illness coverage unnecessarily difficult to utilize (vet’s treatment notes required???) & no wellness coverage. Sigh, no use crying over spilt milk (or $s in this case) & another chalk up to life lessons taught. Hoping for credit of 1 week of current month’s cc charge.

16. More recent shopping deals: At big box – a clearance can of cat food 25% off (his turkey for Thanksgiving ) & 7-Up Cream Cheese Cake Bites 49% off from clearance bakery rack. At gas station – a muffin 80% off using perks electronic coupon.

17. Processed remaining pineapple chunks from 6# 10 oz. gifted can. After eating as much as reasonable, fixed Victoriana Chicken Salad (the only recipe I make that calls for pineapple) & then drained & froze remaining segments on parchment paper in deep freeze. Bagged & labeled frozen segments to use in additional chicken salad next summer.

18. DH scraped a wall with his SUV navigating a narrow drive through this summer, leaving a good deal of gray paint on the front driver’s area of his black vehicle. Dealership recommended auto body for repainting. Uh no, minor cosmetic issue which totally did not justify repaint. Contacted car fix-it guy with independent business who previously looked @ DD’s car for potential body repairs. After same day call to set up time for an estimate, we were back home within 1 hour with issue completely resolved for small amount of $ including a cash discount (20%) to boot.

19. Spent many hours ensuring new insurance plans becoming effective as promised, even needing to correct benefits administration co. who incorrectly stated that we had waived coverage. Um no… That followed by determining that providers are in-network, then scheduling flu shots for DH & myself & a brief nurse visit for yours truly, all within a short amount of time requiring 1 trip to clinic. Navigating health care these days, even for simple health promotion activities, is not for the faint of heart with missteps incurring potentially significant unnecessary expense.

20. Last but not least, we took DD’s new used car back yet again for service as we discovered that when her doors are locked the lift gate remains unlocked. Considering that our complex had a vehicle broken into & then the garage door opener was used to access a garage last weekend, this service that had been scheduled for several weeks could not have come @ a better time. DH spent the better part of a week communicating with the sales associate & sales manager to ensure a no-charge fix prior to making the appointment. Smooth sailing & no charge – simply a previous service person had neglected to reconnect the electrical module for the locking mechanism. Also managed to pick up ordered Weather Tech front floor mats while there which are an early Xmas gift for DD, 2 objectives accomplished in 1 trip. Considering that we experienced a 7+” snow this month in the upper Midwest, they are a timely purchase put to immediate use.


C October 29, 2020 at 7:58 am

I hope you like the book! I thought it was pretty enlightening and really made me reflect on my relationship with “stuff”.


Lisa M. October 29, 2020 at 11:43 am

C- The book was excellent & difficult to put down. I found it to be deeply insightful on the effects of hoarding on children/teens/young adults & it provided much food for thought about materialism in general. I appreciate your recommendation!


Susie's Daughter October 29, 2020 at 4:18 am

Katy – congrats on the bedroom redo! A big accomplishment that really must feel good at the end of the day.

1) We also just did some work in the bedrooms. Replaced 35 year old carpet (the horsehair and jute carpet pad underneath – YUCK) in a bid to improve indoor air quality and allergy health for both DW and DS. Not necessarily frugal, except that health is priceless and we used a local supplier who does good work at a fair price.

2) Also bought a new bed and frame. Previous bed, though organic, US made and heavily touted online as spectacular, was giving DW fits in the back department. So we looked for a model similar to our best bed ever, a black label version from major retailer, and were delighted to find that the one that was most similar to our beloved bed cost the same now as when we bought it 11 years ago. How is that possible? Not sure, but my guess is that the mattress people have “upgraded” models so many times since then that our original favorite is now considered old school. (This whole process reaffirms for me that one should never buy a car they haven’t driven or a bed they haven’t laid on…)

3) All this bedroom reorganizing prompted me to go through all my clothes and jewelry and really get rid of what I don’t wear. I sending some family jewelry to my cousin and my Goddaughter and will sell some locally. My BFF, displaced by COVID and living in our rental unit next door (yay for proximity!), helped me go through stuff and was able to find some things she wanted/needed. One bag of fabric recycling has gone to Salvation Army and one bag of good clothes is ready for local thrift store. And I am no longer paying to store things I don’t use! (Leftover mindset from renting for years, but I think about the mortgage that way – what am I willing to pay to keep?)

4) Garden still producing kale, arugula and swiss chard in spite of multiple snow episodes and many nights near or below freezing.

5) Cooking at home with a few exceptions. Coffee at home (except for three times in the last 9 months). Movies at home. Family game nights on Wednesdays at home – so far I have been beaten at Blokus and Trouble. Birthday celebration for our 10 year old this weekend – you guessed it! – at home. Maybe a little trick or treating – waiting to see stats on community with new cases reported this week.

I am thinking of the many people in this community facing wildfires, hurricanes, joblessness, personal grief and hardship and am sending my wishes for peace and comfort wherever you can find it. Thanks to Katy and this community for being one of those places for me. Stay safe, everyone.


Bee October 29, 2020 at 5:30 am

I love that shade of gray! Would you share the color, Katy?
1. This was coupon/discount week. I saved $13 at the grocery store using a $10 off $50 coupon from a competitor and a $3 digital coupon. I used $15 in extra bucks from CVS to buy shampoo and conditioner. I used a $10 off $20 at Staples to purchase some items that I needed. Finally, I received a $10 gift card when I received my flu shot and a $5 gift card when I bought laundry detergent at Target. That’s $53 in savings!!!! I’m not sure how that happened, because I’m not s big coupon user. I guess I should pay more attention.

2. My son is buying his first car on his own. I was helping him with his insurance and decided to get quotes on the cars that belong to my husband and me. I will save nearly $60 a month – $720 – changing carriers. It’s always worth checking. This will go into affect November 9th.

3. I went to an outdoor rummage sale on Sunday where I purchased a few items for resale including a matched set of Wedgwood Queensware Vases for $0.25 a piece. I sold these on Monday for $65. I was very pleased. Since this rummage sale benefitted the women’s shelter, I made a donation also.

eBay in general has been a bit slow and somewhat aggravating since they switched my account over to their managed payments system.

4. I have been searching thrift stores, estate sales and Facebook Marketplace for months for a wrought iron console table for my entry porch. I mentioned this to a friend and remarkably she had one in her shed that I could have. It needs a little TLC, but it is the perfect size. That is this week’s project.

5. I finally joined our local Buy Nothing Group! There was not one in our area until recently. This makes me very happy. I have things to gift!

Of course, I have also been doing all the usual things – drinking primarily filtered water, brewing my own coffee, cooking from scratch at home, utilizing my local library, walking miles with the new pup, wearing thrifted clothing, and watching streamed television content.
Wishing you all peace, health and frugality…


Ruby October 29, 2020 at 6:05 am

Your bedroom is gorgeous! That is an amazing transformation from the hot dog pink.

My FFT have been posted elsewhere because my life is boring lately:

1. My work office mate and I have been mournfully wishing aloud for a coffee pot, so this weekend I made a lightning fast trip through Goodwill and got one for $3.99. Sanitized it inside and out and we are good to go. This will save her the cost of a daily trip to Starbucks and keep me from falling asleep during boring Zoom meetings.
2. Had enough various leftovers to assemble freezer meal work lunches for myself this week without cooking.
3. Cut my own hair this weekend — still rocking the Pandemic Pixie cut — using an inexpensive razor comb. The replaceable blades are just double-sided razor blades.
4. Scored a $5 gift card using Fetch Rewards. Everyone in the household is now trained to bring me their receipts. We don’t buy a lot of name brands, but the few do add up over time.
5. Cleaned the inside of the oven window, which using the self-cleaning function doesn’t help on my oven, with some Dollar Tree LA Awesome degreaser spray and a razor blade scraper. It took about ten minutes to make it spotless.


Katie October 29, 2020 at 6:55 am

1. Received 4 pounds of green tomatoes from my Buy Nothing group and taught myself how to make fried green tomatoes and remoulade. Delicious!!!
2. Ran out of oat milk and I’m trying not to go grocery shopping until November so I made my own. It isn’t as good as the stuff I buy, but it wasn’t bad.
3. Made homemade hot coco mix yesterday as I have been craving it lately. Can’t wait to try it out tonight.
4. I wanted to add succulents to my plant collection, but instead of buying them, I propagated some from my friend’s plants.
5. I’ve sold a few things on FB Marketplace and I’ve had inquiries about a mismatch set of dishes that I listed.


LB October 29, 2020 at 7:16 am

1. Fiance’s birthday was Tuesday, and I managed to steer all gift giving to experiences and consumables. My gift was a whiskey aging kit (guaranteed to help get through some of the winter blues) and a gift card for hiking boots, and most other gifts centered around streaming services and virtual workout classes. Continuing to collect moments, not things–and keep us happy at home.

2. Cleared out an old box of paperwork destined for the shredder and found a motherlode of old gift cards I must have hoarded in my broke college days. Barnes and Noble, Subway, even a Regal Cinemas card. Will gladly use whatever balances I have left to buy Christmas gifts and spend the rest on small conveniences like lunch out.

3. Went home to my parents’ house for the weekend to celebrate my grandpa’s birthday (after a COVID test, of course) and it was a deliciously frugal weekend. We baked a birthday cake, ate at home, and ended it all with a trip to the polls where I got to spend quality time with my mom and sister while waiting to early vote. Only expense was hitting Wegmans on the way home to pick up some treats and items we can’t get at our local grocery store. I also got to help my sister prepare for a pop-up shop for her new bakery, which was so fun and I learned some new skills!

4. Beginning my Christmas shopping as a form of escapism–not because I like shopping early! We have somehow gotten on all sorts of magazine lists, so I’m enjoying some “analog scrolling” with sticky notes and a sharpie tagging ideas for friends and family. My holiday budget is set, so trying to see what I can slot in for everyone is a fun challenge/distraction right now.

5. Put together a Halloween costume for a small covid-pod party this weekend and managed to get 90% of the things I needed off of poshmark. Looking forward to an evening of semi-normalcy (and a lot of Halloween candy!) at a low/no cost.


Jenelle October 29, 2020 at 7:59 am

1. Someone donated an IKEA blue bag to my work with professional clothing in it. I am keeping that bag as we have no need for it here at work. But boy I can use those at home for Ebay.
2. Ebay has been providing me with 2 or 3 sales each day. I am happy for any sale, but consistent sales are extra wonderful!
3. My kids eat breakfast at school (because its free right now) and they don’t like the sliced apples they are given, so they bring them home and I take them in my lunch.
4. No need to buy treats or candy in our house right now. With all of the halloween activities going on, candy is abundant!
5. Added a second layer of login protection on Amazon. Not only is it keeping the bad guys out, its also keeping me out because I find myself too lazy to check for the code they send to my phone. Totally LAZY I know, but actually is working on keeping me from UN-necessary “window” shopping.


Shona October 29, 2020 at 12:18 pm

I gave my blue Ikea bag to my friend last week. Funny, I fought for that bag in a nasty separation and it just sat on a closet shelf ever since. I genuinely thought I would use it, I didn’t want it out of spite, and there is not an Ikea anywhere close to me. Anyway, I still think they are the best .49 purchase ever, but my friend was overjoyed with it.


cathy October 29, 2020 at 11:18 am

1. Sold a vintage midcentury lounge chair for $155. I loved the look of it, and the color of the upholstery, but no one wanted to sit in it because the upholstery was scratchy, and one leg always wanted to separate where the side support meets the leg. We got several years use out of it plus made some money.
2. Harvested the last of the veggie garden before the temps plummeted to 17 and we had several inches of snow. Still enjoying tomatoes, plums and zucchini. Rescued most of the pumpkins before the cold did them in.
3. Mailed a gift and, because it was books, sent it Media mail rate. $3 vs $20 for Priority.
4. Ordered multiple cases of the various GF flours we use. We are well stocked to get us through the holidays (no worries of empty shelves) and got a case discount as well. Also found a great sale on yeast, so I stocked up on that as well. I feel a bit guilty stocking up on certain basics in case there are more pandemic shortages, but if my food-allergic kid wants bread or pizza, we have to make them from scratch since there aren’t any commercially-prepared items safe for him.
5. Was gifted two Eastern Redbud seedlings through my Buy Nothing group.


Lindsey October 29, 2020 at 12:02 pm

1. Husband bought me a vat of those mozzarella balls floating in spiced oil. I love them but won’t spend that much on cheese, so they were most welcome. As I was finishing them I realized that the spiced oil could be transferred to a jar and kept in the fridge and used instead of regular oil for some frying. Not much savings but every penny and all that.

2. Husband dug out a PVC pipe and has repurposed it as a chute for Halloween candy delivery. He temporarily moved the doorbell to the bottom of the chute and decorated the pipe with orange lights. Safe candy delivery. He is so clever!

3. Did four gas shops, so money plus $20 worth of free gas. These do not require interacting with any humans so safe to do.

4. A neighbor’s kid is being schooled remotely and has to do a certain amount of gym hours. It snowed six inches two nights ago and he came over and offered to shovel the snow if I would sign off that he had completed his gym time. I could not sign fast enough! He did a great job and when I went to give him a tip he asked if I would be willing to give him a dozen eggs instead.

5. Dropped off a box of things to Salvation Army and picked up my free Dorito Taco from Taco Bell because someone hit a home run. Look, I know they are not real tacos but I like them anyway. Paid for one for husband so we had our own little parking lot picnic lunch for $2.49.

This is not really a frugal thing but brightened my heart. Our battery died one parking lot over from an auto store. My 72 year old husband made his way through the fresh snow over to their store and bought a battery (it was time) and when the counter guy found out the story he put the husband and battery in the company truck and drove over to our vehicle and put in the battery. All for no charge. And he was wearing a mask. My husband tried to pay him and the young guy said that he was doing it because someone recently changed his grandfather’s flat tire by the side of the road and he was paying it forward. I might have shed a little tear.


Lisa M. October 29, 2020 at 12:40 pm

Lindsey – We recently had an experience similar to your battery story, just not as dramatic. It was a nice day @ the car dealership & my DD was walking with high heels carrying a giant box containing her Weather Tech floor mats. One of their employees rushed through the lot & offered to open the box, install her mats & recycle the giant box, all while recovering from a recent broken scapula & in obvious discomfort. And yes, he was wearing a mask. These types of experiences affirm one’s faith in humanity & are excellent reminders to jump into action the next time an opportunity to help presents itself.


Bee October 29, 2020 at 12:42 pm

I love your candy delivery system!!!! That is very clever. Happy Halloween!!!!


Christine October 29, 2020 at 4:31 pm

I love the battery story. Definite spirit lifter.


Susanne g October 29, 2020 at 4:35 pm

Mookie Betts stole a base during World Series game. You can thank him for the free taco!


karen October 30, 2020 at 6:40 am

I love your battery story and the story about the newborn boy shoveling you walk. You have the BEST stories.


karen October 30, 2020 at 6:41 am

neighbor geez auto correct


Bettypants October 31, 2020 at 3:53 am

Ha ha, that made me laugh.


Shona October 29, 2020 at 12:22 pm

Your battery story warms my heart, thank you for sharing it.


Christine October 29, 2020 at 2:11 pm

Your bedroom looks great. I love the sloping ceilings. They remind me of my grandmother’s house. It always felt cozy sleeping under one.
FFTs…kindness of neighbors and strangers edition.
1. Our neighbor on one side had a large tree limb fall in his yard during a recent wind storm. I heard his chain saw buzzing never realizing he had us in mind. I realize it’s close to Halloween but nothing like that! He was cutting up the limb for us. He then loaded it into his wheelbarrow and dumped it next to our outdoor firepit.
2.Our neighbor on the other side had a 16′ flat bottom boat in his yard for ages. He told us he didn’t plan on using it and if we wanted it, we could have it. Yes please. Along with it he gave us oars and life preservers.
3. DH was walking down the road for exercise when a pick up truck pulled out of a driveway. “Ya know anyone who wants some loam?” asked the driver. “Me,” says DH. The man drove it to our house and dumped it in the yard where DH asked him to. We’re using it to even out dips and divits in the lawn and to shore up a banking.
4. A former postal coworker called to ask me if I was interested in processing early and mail in ballots. This is in addition to my usual job working at the polls. Extra $$$ in.
5. No money spent at the local Trump store where a portion of every sale goes toward his campaign.


Mand01 October 29, 2020 at 9:44 pm

1. Really working to use up the contents of our two freezers, supplemented by our garden and chicken eggs.
2. Reading library books and e-books on Libby. Currently reading the biography of Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow.
3. Resisting the urge to subscribe to Disney + We have a two streaming service rule. I know, first world problem of the highest order, but still – it’s a temptation.
4. Went thrifting today and got a new pair of designer jeans, new shirt, workout pants, and a tshirt for $27. The jeans would have been over $150 in the store so it was worth it just for that.
5. I was hungry after my outing and tempted to stop in a favourite cafe for lunch but I came home for homemade pumpkin soup and a roll instead.


Lindsay B October 30, 2020 at 5:12 am

1. Finally made banana bread from frozen bananas. It’s only frugal to buy reduced fruit if you actually use it!
2. In the same vein as #1, I also used some frozen homemade broth and some wilting veggies to make dinner. Homemade broth is only frugal if I actually use it, lol.
3. Bought two plants and several food items we regularly use for 70% off due to the store clearing inventory before a remodel.
4. DH made the long bike ride to the “near expiry date” store and came back with lots of shredded cheese. We use this on our weekly pizza date nights, and not only is it cheaper from the food store, but it comes in a much bigger package.
5. Finally used up not one, but two full-sized skincare products that I received as freebies. They were nice, but not fantastic so I will not be purchasing replacements. When I end up with products that I don’t prefer on my face, I can often use them on my decolletage/chest, neck, and hands (especially before bedtime)– all areas that I figure need anti-aging skincare, too.
6. Picked two pounds of chanterelle mushrooms. It’s an amazing feeling walking into the forest and walking out with delicious free food. They are delicious in a garlic cream sauce over pasta.
7. Saved myself from an extra doctor’s visit by mentioning the upcoming appointment while seeing a different doctor. She offered to prescribe the medication I needed on the spot, which saved a trip out of town, another co-pay, and more time.
8. Washed my windows (we only have four) on the last nice day of fall before interminable rain sets in. It’s amazing how much better my outlook and apartment look after a little warm water, dish soap, and elbow grease.


Shona October 30, 2020 at 5:57 pm

Chanterelle mushrooms, what a find! We went hiking last weekend looking for orange chicken, no luck. Last year we harvested several pounds, but that was 2 hours away, we were searching more local this year.


Lindsay B November 1, 2020 at 12:44 pm

Yes, we were so lucky/grateful! They are one of the more common mushrooms in our neck of the woods but you still have to have a secret spot in order to find any. 🙂 Hope you have better luck soon!


rebecca October 30, 2020 at 1:39 pm

1. Got the last csa today. I will miss it. I am thinking about trying misfits market. Has anyone else tried it? what did you think?
2. I bought english muffins from the day old rack and bananas and apples for baking from the fruit day old rack.
3. No takeout tonight. I have stuff in fridge and even though I am so tired, I will be kind to my bank account.
4. It started snowing here in MA and I have my coat, boots, hats and mittens from last year.
5. I am going to make pies for friends from the apples I purchased from the day old rack. 3 are for thank you’s and one because they are struggling.


Mary in Maryland October 31, 2020 at 6:24 am

I’m doing Hungry Harvest which is similar. I like the variety of the biggest fruit and veggie box, but we only need to get one every three weeks. Getting surprise vegetables is what passes for a thrill here during COVID.


Ava Abbott October 31, 2020 at 9:10 am

Rebecca, I have gotten 2 boxes from Misfits Market & so far, there was only one item that was no good. Great quality & variety.


rebecca November 2, 2020 at 7:28 am

Thank you both for your feedback!


Kristen | The Frugal Girl October 30, 2020 at 2:58 pm

VERY EXCITED for the before and after post. Woohoo!

Also very happy for you that you got to actually sleep in your bedroom. Luxurious. 🙂

So that I’m staying on theme and not just fangirling over your bedroom walls, here’s my latest frugal five:


Bettypants October 30, 2020 at 3:04 pm

1. I participated in the pumpkin decorating contest at work, primarily so I could take home my pumpkin afterwards for seed roasting. Three other people gave me their pumpkins also.

2. Target offered a $40 coupon for signing up their red card. My last one was cancelled due to non use. I used my coupon on olive oil, hand soap, candy, and socks.

3. Bought a fancy Cuisinart espresso machine off FB for $8, only to find the steamer didn’t work, so cappuccinos were not happening. I reposted it for $20 with the disclosure on the actual condition, and it sold right away.

4. Sold a book and a pair of crocheted pillowcases on ebay. Got a few more listings up.

5. My fave resale store had all clothing 50% off. I bought a Tahari down winter coat for myself, two Adidas shirts for my teen, two sweaters and an UA hoodie to resell. My total was $36.57. I am grateful for finding the down coat as I wanted to replace mine last year, and this one fits perfectly, is a good weight, and I like the color/style.


Michele Davidson November 2, 2020 at 8:18 am

I only like the seeds, too! My husband likes to do intricate carvings!


betta from daVille October 30, 2020 at 4:05 pm

1. “No heat til trick or treat.” It snowed here today, so I’m layered up with 2 pairs of socks, a hat, and fingerless gloves. The cats are being extra cuddly.
2. Purchased some meat for stewing. The scanner at the grocery charged me .01 more than the sticker. According to MA law, this entitled me to get the entire package for free.
3. Also had planned on getting a whole chicken that was on sale. At the store, there was a different brand that was marked for quick sale, even cheaper than the sale price. Since we were planning on cooking it that night, we went with the cheaper option.
4. I filled out a short survey through work and got a free $10 for Amazon, that we will save up until we need something.
5. Continue to cook all meals at home, coffee, drink water, etc. etc., made stock, roasted the last of the cherry tomatoes (before the snow came), saved broth from carnitas for future ramen, and meal plan.


Kathy October 31, 2020 at 4:39 pm

1. On countdown to move 11/7 from So Cal to Oklahoma. Unfortunately we had to spend $6000 to repair termite damage plus tenting the house.
2. Deep dive for the move has resulted in some significant listing and sales not to mention donation, ditching and regifting
3. I have been treated this week to lunch 3 times, dinner once and wine/cheese/dessert buffet=no need for dinners
4. Eating out of the refrigerator, freezer and pantry.
5. We will be staying at a motel next week as the house will be unoccupied during the tenting. Yet another expense


Diane November 1, 2020 at 12:25 pm

I know you have to do what you have to do to maintain your sanity in these crazy times, but the thought of an original post from you that is not an FFT gives me thrills. I hope that isn’t too creepy.


C November 2, 2020 at 11:00 am

I have been having vivid and disturbing dreams (nightmares) about the outcome of tomorrow’s election. As a woman, an ally, an environmentalist, an empathetic human being- the fate of so much rests on tomorrow’s outcome. My hours at work are being increasingly cut back (COVID) which adds to my anxiety (and the free time I have to obsessively read the news). I’m trying to fill my time with productive work.
– While I had the oven on to make homade granola (frugalgirl’s recipe) I also baked bread, roasted butternut squash and roasted tomatoes. Also soaked and cooked black beans. Making a black bean/ squash stew over rice for dinner. The house smells amazing.
– went for a hike this morning with the dog. I go just about every morning and it makes me a better human being.
– made soy wax candles this weekend with my kids. I love burning candles but hate all the scary chemicals in them. They are fun and easy to make once or twice a year and last forever.
-drying laundry on the line
– the whole family chopped and stacked firewood this weekend. All our wood racks are full. This should get us through the winter. We lit our first woodstove fire this morning.
-covered up the chicken’s coop with a tarp. They are fine in the cold weather but I wanted to give them additional shelter for once the wind and snow hit.
– my mending pile is enormous- I have been avoiding it for a month or so.
-library books for the kids and I
-I’m helping a neighbor process her meat birds- in return we are getting a few chickens (funny thing is that I am a vegetarian, I still cook meat for my family)

Sending love and positive thoughts to you all. Tomorrow will be tough but I believe in the goodness of human beings <3


c November 2, 2020 at 11:54 am

Also- I just started working on my second master’s degree. One of the school’s I teach at allows me to take 4 courses a year for free. I’m hoping that once the pandemic subsides this will give me an edge and some leverage for growth in my career.


Patricia Koernig November 3, 2020 at 12:44 am

I am with you, C. I believe in the goodness of human beings. And that will prevail. Sending you a virtual, anxious hug.
In solidarity and hope.


Diane November 5, 2020 at 4:07 pm

LOL, I just made a double batch of TFG’s granola this week, too. Since the pandemic began, it’s been our go-to instead of store bought cereal. Much more delicious, certainly healthier, and if you buy in bulk, w-a-a-a-a-y cheaper. Plus, less packaging waste!

Pro Tip: I shared the recipe with a friend who creates recipes for a living (She would be the pro, not moi.). She doubled the dry ingredients, but used less sugar, syrup and oil. She used 1/4 cup of each instead of 1/3 (so half cup of each for a double batch) and it works great. It’s not so clumpy, but that may be because I don’t bother to tamp it down on the baking sheet. Sometimes I add a bit of hot water (1/8 to 1/4 cup) to help the liquids+sugar emulsify before adding them to the dry ingredients, which also helps.

I <3 <3 <3 Katie and Kristen!


Katy November 13, 2020 at 12:41 pm

Aw, thanks. We love you too!


AuntiAli November 2, 2020 at 10:11 pm

My five frugal things:
1. I ordered a new purse from Target and got it and did not like it. It was also missing the cross body strap. Contacted Target via online and they credited my credit card and told me I didn’t have to send the purse back. A covid thing?
2. We had trick or treat in our town with the suggestion of following our covid rules. Hubs put the picnic bench on the front stoop and, wearing gloves, laid out candy in a single line with spaces between. While it was still light out he sat in the driveway – far away from front stoop – with his mask on, his iPad and waited for kids. We got a few and he had a big smile on his face.
3. Due to scanning the grocery receipt on Fetch Rewards I now have enough points to get a free dinner for the three of us from Applebees. Not my most fav but only down the road from us.
4. Checked credit card points and have enough to get a Starbucks gift card and a good gift card for daughter for Christmas.
5. Did my civic duty and voted early and remotely by dropping my ballot in an official ballot box.
6. Dropped property tax payment in safe box outside the municipal building there by saving .55 on a stamp.
7. Eating at home, staying at home due to Covid concerns. I will have to go to the foot doctor due to a possible ulcer on my big toe.


AuntiAli November 2, 2020 at 10:13 pm

A funny thing. Hubs went to Staples to buy a desk to work from home with as he’s been using a 1950’s vintage chrome kitchen table. There were no desks to be found at Staples.


Katy October 30, 2020 at 5:51 pm

I do have that information, but don’t feel comfortable with contacting her directly. Sorry.


Katy October 31, 2020 at 12:31 pm

Yes, please do keep us updated. Virtual hugs. XXOO


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