Five Frugal Things

by Katy on October 17, 2022 · 60 comments

I’m fully aware that the current advertisement configuration on the blog is the absolute worst at the moment, and I promise that I’m trying to fix it. I do want a couple of ads to cover expenses, but this is ridiculous! I’ve unclicked for popup ads, but it seems to make no difference whatsover. Please know that however frustrated you are, I’m a thousand times more so! I’m meeting with a WordPress expert on Wednesday and am crossing my fingers that I can get the blog back to normal.


  1. I sold just a few things, but I haven’t been listing so low sales makes sense.

    • A pair of vintage wooden wall ducks that I bought for a couple bucks and sold for $37.50.
    • A Brio Builder set through Facebook Marketplace for $20.
    • A Fiestaware teapot through Facebook Marketplace for $20.
    • A Wizard of Oz scarecrow costume through facebook Marketplace for $30.

  2. My next door neighbor let me borrow her car for a last minute errand, and it really hammered home how valuable it is to have strong neighbor relationships. I’ve let this same neighbor borrow our cars when they’re in a pinch, which ends up being maybe twice a year or so.

    I cut her a bouquet of hydrangeas as a thank you.

  3. My beautiful daughter turned 27 last week. She threw herself a birthday party at her new apartment with friends, although it was definitely wasn’t the kind of party where parents are invited. However, I’m not going to let a family birthday pass by without planning out a Birthday Day of Adventures.

    Here’s what we did to celebrate:

    • I took the kids, (adults, I guess they should be referred to as “adults.”) out for brunch at an area restaurant.
    • We then went to a local video arcade where you pay a $3.50 entry free, but the games are cheap, mostly 15¢ – 20¢ per play. (This activity was nostalgic for the kids, as we used to go here a lot.) I loaded ten bucks for each kid onto swipe cards, but try as they might, they were only able to spend them down to about $5 apiece.

    I didn’t want to leave money on the cards, especially since you have to pay to return and spend any leftover balance! So I figured out a hack to spend down the cards. There’s a single solitary game that still takes physical nickels, which is the “coin pusher.” When you swipe your card for the game, it decreases the total by 25¢ and spits out five nickels to play. Or . . . you can swipe repeatedly until your cards are empty and your purse weighs a thousand pounds. Luckily our credit union has a free coin counting machine and was just a few blocks away!

    • Our next stop was the Academy Theater, where we watched the original 1993 version of H.G. Wells’ The Invisible Man, which was amazing and refreshing break from modern Hollywood films.
    • Our last stop was a nearby food cart pod, where we each chose our own dinner to enjoy at home.

    These birthday adventure days are some of my favorite days of year. Especially now that family togetherness has to be scheduled. My husband wasn’t able to join us, but I did text pictures throughout the day. Creating these family memories are so much better than anything I can buy from Amazon.

  4. My son thought he needed to replace the charging port on his iPhone 8, but it turned out to require just a couple puffs (squirts?) of canned air, my daughter moved out but still works at a high end grocery store just a few blocks from the house and often drops by on her lunch breaks to graze leftovers and brings day-old treats like pies, cakes and ciabatta in return which I consider to be a a fair trade, I transplanted my fast growing snake plant into last week’s free pile flowerpot, I listened to an audiobook of The Hotel Nantucket by Elin Hilderbrand through the free Libby app and I read a library copy of Miss Benson’s Beetle, by Rachel Joyce.

  5. I didn’t buy a Lear Jet.

Katy Wolk-Stanley    

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

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{ 60 comments… read them below or add one }

Madeline October 17, 2022 at 5:13 am

Love your blog — been following for years… and I know you’ll fix the ad. glitchy thingy soon.. no worries! Congrats on beautiful daughter’s bday… they will ALWAYS be your “kids!”. I also enjoy experiences for birthdays and other holidays, vs. “stuff.” “Sales” on amazon don’t tempt me unless something on my “NEED” list is offered. It’s nice to be retired and need very,car,furnishings, all good. This allows me to focus on GROCERIES and shopping carefully till the recession comes and goes and inflation is back down.We’re eating more vegetarian meals.. healthier too! Thanks for sharing your fun, your finds, your family events…


K D October 17, 2022 at 5:16 am


I appreciate that you are posting weekly again.

1. We stayed close to home this weekend. We did go to the local grocery store early Sunday and discovered there were several GF items marked down 75%. We bought some of the ones we thought we will use as well as other sale items. We managed to get the total to $50 so that we could use a $10 off competitors coupon. I also had several dollars taken off the bill for redeemed rewards earned from buying gift cards.
2. When I bought chicken breasts last week they only had thin sliced breasts. They are a bit more expensive but we decided worth it since they cook quicker and more evenly.
3. Last week I had a very cheap social life. I walked with a friend on Wednesday, visited with a friend and her mother on Thursday, and visited with two friends on Friday.
4. I fought the urge to buy a new tee-shirt or sweatshirt from my local yoga studio when new items were displayed. I already have a couple of hoodies and a tee-shirt and that is enough.
5. I am gathering items for the White Elephant sale at a local church. They have a fall event that is all about raising money for charities. I feel good about donating there.


Mary in Maryland October 17, 2022 at 5:18 am

1. Huge breakthrough! I was down to one bra which desperately needed washing and I had an apt outside the house. So I grabbed the bra that’s missing one underwire—and it worked perfectly. Well, maybe one of the girls rode a little higher than the other, but I was clearly wearing underwear.
2. I made hot and sour soup despite not having most of the required veg. I chopped up the outside leaves and core of a cauliflower and a bland acorn squash. I subbed a friend’s sunchokes for the water chestnuts and bamboo shoots. And the soup was delicious.
3. I used auto refill when I ordered dog food and meds. I’m very good at remembering to discontinue when appropriate.
4. Found an Orvis dog bed on Craigslist for $50. The new ones are $269. I’ve found over the years that the $50 ones from pet stores shed enough to be a danger to the washing machine. The dog seems impressed to be sleeping on a memory foam mattress.
5. Same old—drinking water, eating at home, cutting my guy’s hair.


Bee October 18, 2022 at 3:06 am

You first frugal thing gave me a much needed laugh this morning. I just bought new bras. (It had been a couple of years). I was
shocked at the prices, but I’m often shocked at prices now. Every week there is something that makes me spin. This week, it’s the cost of oatmeal.


Katy October 18, 2022 at 9:27 am

Oh no, did oatmeal prices soar as well?


Bee October 19, 2022 at 2:56 am

They have nearly doubled where I live. Florida seems to have high food prices in comparison with the rest of the country.


Liz B. October 20, 2022 at 3:34 am

I’ve noticed this as well. The cost of oatmeal has gone way up. I was fortunate enough to find a large container on clearance before the price increase.

Michele October 25, 2022 at 1:12 pm

Just take the wire out of both sides and then all right even…LOL


Ruby October 17, 2022 at 5:56 am

What a fun birthday celebration! Your daughter, lucky girl, inherited your beautiful thick hair.

1. I have taken on the annoying morning job of sweeping the floor of the student laundry room next door to my work office. The side we benefit is finding dropped coins almost every day. 36 cents was my biggest daily haul to date.
2. Happened to look up while scanning the chicken and pork case at the grocery store and discovered a mother lode of marked down for quick sale family packs of chicken on the top shelf. I spent $12 and change, which was a $9.99 discount over the usual price. When we got home, I repackaged it in smaller portions and had to rearrange our little chest freezer to get it all to fit.
3. Used the last zipper bought several years ago at the Salvation Army, in a score of sewing notions and fabric, to make an organizer bag for my purse. There are things I need to carry for work but not the weekend, so now the work stuff is in one neat bag that comes out of my purse on Friday evening.. The fabric was from my sewing stash.
4. My husband and I cleaned out and organized the garage yesterday. We had several bags of trash, a full recycling cart of cardboard and steel, half a carload of useful stuff that went to Goodwill, and reused various baskets and tubs we had on hand.
5. I will work a short week next week, so scavenged in the freezer for various bits and bobs to put together three interesting but nutritious work lunches to plate up and put back in the freezer.


Bee October 18, 2022 at 3:09 am

Way to go on your garage clean up!!!!! My garage is the bane of my existence. It never seems organized.


MB in MN October 17, 2022 at 6:18 am

Brilliant hack at the arcade!

1. Received garden squash from a friend and homemade biscotti from another.

2. Inherited Goo Gone and Liquid Gold from a relative’s house. They have already come in very handy. The table that benefitted from the Liquid Gold treatment looks almost as good as new.

3. Saved gas/money/time by postponing a 100+ mile round trip to a different day when I was going to be in the area for something else.

4. Saved another 100+ mile round trip by not going to an open house after getting more info ahead of time from our real estate agent.

5. Spent zero money on anything related to Halloween. Free pumpkins from seeds from last year’s pumpkins. Only decor is little pumpkins from the garden. No trick or treaters out here in the country.


Michele Davidson October 17, 2022 at 6:38 am

They will always be “the kids”- no matter how big they get!
1. Meal- planned, as it helps me to buy less at grocery store and not pick up random items I might be able to make into a meal.
2. Joined friends for nachos at their house- we brought pico and a homemade dessert.
3. 4. 5. Packed breakfasts and lunches, used up leftovers, and set my cruise and hung out in the slow lane on way to work.


susanna d October 17, 2022 at 7:03 am

My frugals for the week:

1. My husband surprised me this past weekend by asking if I ever watch Netflix anymore. I’d signed up back when Netflix picked up Longmire (so, years ago) , but Longmire has been over and done with for quite some time. I don’t watch Netflix, but I thought my husband did. I thought wrong. So we’ll be saving money by cancelling, but we’d have been saving more money if we’d done this sooner. Normally we communicate pretty well about money things, but somehow Netflix slipped through. Just goes to show there’s always room for improvement.
2. While driving through a different area of the state, we stopped at a farm store that we like. We got a few deals on produce, like eggplant for 75 cents apiece, and a monster cabbage for $2. The cabbage weighed 15 pounds – I know this because I weighed it when we got it home. It was too big for the food scale so it had to be weighed on the “people scale.” And let me just say 15 pounds is a LOT of cabbage.
3. We’ve had several frosts and even have a little snow on the ground right now. Before the weather turned, I picked, blanched and froze what remained in the garden. Well, except for the tomatoes. Due to an epic chipmunk war, those had all been picked a few weeks ago, and I still have tomatoes ripening indoors.
4. The cold weather made me think “soup”, and I made a big batch of vegetable broth from the bags of veggie scraps in the freezer, and several quarts of chicken stock from a Costco rotisserie chicken carcass. I love turning food scraps into, well, edible food.
5. Cashed in fuel points for $1 off per gallon of gasoline (thank you, extra points for gift cards promotion). As usual, we took along several five gallon gas cans so we could take advantage of the maximum discounted amount.


Selena October 17, 2022 at 7:17 am

We’d have likely given away the swipe cards to other patrons. Used to do that with the leftover tickets at the local festivals (but do NOT get me started about having to use tickets to buy food at some of those festivals).
Not so frugal is managing to catch a cold – been a number of years since I had one but still irks me to no end. Had plenty of OTC “weapons” at home besides steaming in the shower (we have a well so just natural gas cost to heat the water). I’m not paying $150 (or whatever ridiculous “negotiated amount”) to have a doctor say “you have a cold”. Oh, and I’m sure a COVID test would also be required.
Been picking away at my clutter – wish I’d have had more time to gather stuff for a swap event. But I’m happy with the items we took from my parents house. Barely made a dent but 50+ years of stuff won’t get cleaned out in a few months.


Christine October 17, 2022 at 7:37 am

I know you’re dealing with the pop-up ads as best you can. I just scroll up and past them.
1. The sun doesn’t get up high enough in the sky anymore to shine over my neighbor’s roof and dry the clothes I hang outside on my umbrella clothesline. We now use a combination of hanging our laundry around the house and using the dryer sparingly anytime on the weekends and on weekdays between the hours of 9 P.M. and 6 A.M. when the electric rates are down.
2. I went to a birthday party and was sent home with a beautiful handmade gnome which I will use as a Christmas decoration with some greens and red berries I pick in back of my house.
3. DH and I signed up to work the upcoming midterm elections. This will give a boost to our savings.
4. I bought 2/$1.25 Halloween cards for friends in long term care.
5. I brought my huge old Christmas Cactus in the house before our first frost last week and it immediately began to develop buds…well over a hundred of them. It will be beautiful in a couple of weeks. I guess it loves being in the house and lucky for me as a frugalist, I do too!


Kathy October 17, 2022 at 8:50 am

The good, the bad and the ugly.
Had heart catherization last Monday. Good news is no stent or valve replacement needed. Bad news is I missed a week of work so short paycheck next week. Ugly is I must loose weight and exercise
While I was off there was no driving so no need to fill up the car.
I spent the downtime listing on various sites and made a couple of sales. I also organized cleaning supplies and we need nothing.
Dejunked cosmetics and skin care and listed items I don’t need or use. Got a jump start on the holiday by organizing gifts.


Katy October 17, 2022 at 5:47 pm

That must have been worrisome to go through, glad to hear you don’t need the more invasive surgical options.


A. Marie October 17, 2022 at 10:58 am

First, happy late birthday to Katy’s DD, and I agree with Ruby about the glorious hair.

Now, FFT, That Which Does Not Kill Me Makes Me Stronger Edition:

(1) A gallon of milk I bought at Price Chopper for half price (after Reduced for Quick Sale stickers) started going sour the minute I opened it, even though its best-by date was still 3 days off. I’m drinking it anyway till I can’t stand it any longer–I’ve already used half the jug–and will use it in baking after that. (A. Marie’s “No @#$!! Sugar in the Cornbread,” here we come.)

(2) My grad school BFF who was here to nurse me through the worst of my recent gum grafting mixed up more lemon/garlic/pepperoncini marinade than she needed for an America’s Test Kitchen recipe of Greek roasted potatoes, so we saved the remainder. I just put this 2-week-old marinade on a batch of lightly boiled Brussels sprouts (al dente, not complete mush)–and, boy howdy, does this ever do wonders for Brussels sprouts!

(3) I continue to go thrifting for winter clothes that Dr. Bestest Neighbor’s ill relative needs. This serves several purposes: It benefits the relative directly; it gives Dr. BN and the relative some much-needed diversion as I relate the tales of the acquisitions; and it scratches my thrifting itch without my acquiring anything further (which I do NOT need).

(4) I got my 2023 garlic planted yesterday. A modest 12 cloves, but I’m finding that 12 heads of garlic a year are all I need as an elderly newly-single. I keep having to crank things down this way.

(5) And I applied backside to desk chair on this rainy day and got a good start on the next PowerPoint presentation I’m doing for my local JASNA (Jane Austen Society of North America) region. This is frugal in the sense of saving me from a nervous breakdown when Dec. 10 (the presentation date) rolls around.


Katy October 17, 2022 at 5:47 pm

That hair is even better in person. Her platinum blonde hair never darkened, which is rare. It’s so soft!


Joyce October 20, 2022 at 3:35 pm

A. Marie, try making farmer’s cheese or cottage cheese, ricotta with that soured milk. Recipes are on line and sooooo easy!


janine October 17, 2022 at 11:34 am

. Realtor friend hosted a free document shredding party over the weekend and added in a chance to pickup a free pumpkin. Haven’t bought one in years due to the thievery of our yard wildlife. Have been using plastic ones they haven’t yet adjusting their eating habits to.
2. We purchased probably the last batch of peaches for the season. Also scored grapes, honeydew and pineapple. DH recently had heart surgery; fruit consumption encouraged; refined sugar discouraged. Most of these items came from the mark down table at our local produce market.
3. Found some boiled ham cold cuts marked down to $1 per # and now wish I had stocked up.
4. Attended book club on zoom this morning.We reviewed Katherine Stewart’s book entitled : Power Worshippers: Inside the Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism. Good discussion. I’ve been borrowing bookclub books from the library. Zoom= no gas expenditures for the win.
5. Making lists of upcoming expenditures. Our dog food brand has been discontinued. Looking for a good substitute for him. Also have decided that we all need new winter pajamas for Xmas. Now is the time to do the research!



Katy October 17, 2022 at 5:46 pm

I love the idea of a paper shredding party. We have one, so we keep on top of the task, but I know that now everyone has one at home.


Coral Clarke October 17, 2022 at 4:25 pm

I , like you, pick up cards for a couple of my mothers old friends. She died last month, just before her 98th birthday, and I used to visit a few other residents when I visited her. Couple of hours travel away so not going to be going back!


Dmarie October 17, 2022 at 4:50 pm

realized I wasn’t seeing a gajillion ads (laptop) — ooh, I have an adblocker! in thanks for all your posts I’ve read over the years, and those to come, I turned off my adblocker. So sorry I didn’t think to do so sooner. Happy, Happy Birthday to your DD!!


Katy October 17, 2022 at 5:45 pm

Thank you, it floors me that she’s 27, as that’s how old I was when she was born.


Tonya October 18, 2022 at 2:38 pm



Dmarie October 24, 2022 at 3:27 pm

gotta love that <3


Lindsey October 17, 2022 at 5:54 pm

1. Library for books and a puzzle.
2. Tool library, not to borrow a tool but to see if one of the guys who runs the place and is a retired plumber could help the husband figure out a problem with the garbage disposal. He is trying to make it vomit out the contents to one of our compost tubs instead of the sewer system, which helps our compost turn faster but also keeps things out of the municipal system. The guy sat with my husband for over an hour and they came up with a way to do it.
3. Seed library, run by a different group not the main or tool libraries, to drop off seeds I harvested and pick up some garlic to plant. I don’t grow a lot of garlic so the six heads I got will do. It seemed late to plant, since we have had snow, but it warmed up to 36 today and so I planted them. The garlic was provided by someone else who uses the seed library so no cost to me but my contribution was my seeds.
4. Got my Covid and flu shots, which is more frugal than getting sick. My immune system is shot, so I need all the help I can get. And they were free, plus we each got a coupon for 10% off one of our grocery trips. We get them every year with our flu shot and I wait to use them for Thanksgiving and Christmas shopping trips.
5. My neighbor’s daughter is trying to earn money for some Brownie project. She came and asked if I had any chores she could do for me. I could not think of any but then she said she would give my hedgehog a bath for 50 cents These are excellent neighbors so hiring their little kid to do a chore is a frugal thing in the long run. I paid her $5 and then had to sit there by the sink for half an hour because she was so thrilled to be “touching a real hedgehog! My friend has one but it is stuffed, not real. This is better than stuffed!” I did tell her that she will not need another bath until spring, so this was it for bath time. It was nice to see a kid so innocent she still loves Brownie projects.


A. Marie October 18, 2022 at 6:52 am

Lindsey, I don’t know what I like better about your #5: the fact that you have a pet hedgehog, or the fact that you have a little neighbor who’s thrilled to bits to bathe it!


Lindsey October 18, 2022 at 1:13 pm

It is a rescue hedgehog! You might ask what kind of man hurls a partner’s hedgehog across the room when she “disobeys” him. And why she would stay with him and give the hedgehog away rather than keep the pet and get rid of the guy. Esmarelda still does not like/trust us all that much, even after three years. But let me tell you, hedgehogs are magnets for kids. Every person I know with a young grandchild has asked to bring the child over to see it in person.


Bee October 19, 2022 at 3:01 am

What great library resources!!! Esmeralda sounds like a treasure. I didn’t know hedgehogs needed baths. NCA – your source for information. 🙂


Nicola October 17, 2022 at 6:58 pm

The last few bits coming in from the garden. Rain forecast for Friday, which is a relief, as we are in stage 4 drought, and really worried about our well.
Have often thought that one of those foot revitalizing gadgets might help my husband, but not paying hundreds just to try. Found one on fb for $40. If it doesn’t work for him, it can go back on fb, for the same! So far, so good.
We have booked 2 nights, not too far away, for our anniversary. Room has a kitchenette and we have been checking out take out options so we can continue with our usual care against catching various germs. (Husband is vulnerable, but desperate for a get away). My son is coming to visit and look after the geriatric dog whilst we are away.
Found a new, low carb cake that husband likes, which saves on bought snacks and feelings of deprivation.
Found some new flip flops for me and boots for husband at the freestore in our little community. Love that place, so many awesome finds.
Gave away some waste wool to a beekeeper friend, something to do with hives and moisture, apparently. Honey will come back at some point :-).


LB October 17, 2022 at 7:20 pm

Hard to believe your daughter is 27! Happy happy birthday!

1. Currently on a pantry cleanout for the ages. Fortunately/unfortunately we are incredibly stocked up. For breakfast this week? Almond+vanilla granola that it never occurred to me I could eat like cheerios. I’ve been waiting to buy yogurt!

2. Located a small fire pit we had a few apartments ago in storage. Brought it down to our place now that we have outdoor space again and have created the most lovely spot to hang out. Bonus–drinks in the fridge are much cheaper than going out!

3. Have made it over a full year without a haircut and it still looks pretty good. Will need to cave soon but am feeling very satisfied.

4. Doing my nails for events at home and saving a lot of cash (and nail damage) by avoiding gel manicures.

5. Went through my closet and actually got rid of everything that does not fit. This is going to be a game changer this winter as whenever i’ve looked in there and seen all the clothes that I cannot wear, I feel compelled to buy new ones. Right now, the opportunities are endless (and my anxiety is quelled!)


Jill A October 18, 2022 at 5:18 am

Happy Birthday to your daughter!!

1. Instead of booking a weekend in Traverse City as we had originally planned I took my mother on a three hour drive to enjoy the beautiful fall colors. We stopped for lunch in one of my favorite beach towns. I drove my hybrid and my mother paid for my lunch as a thank you. This saved each of us several hundred dollars because the cost of lodging in fall is exorbitant.
2. I’ve sold a few things on Ebay and I’m still working on listing what I have before I source more. It’s a struggle.
3. A friend started a new job cleaning an office for pocket money. They apparently throw out a lot of packaging material which she kindly delivered to me yesterday…boxes, bubble wrap and peanuts.
4. Last week my frugal activities have been to the benefit of others. I drove my Mom to the airport an hour away which was cheaper than paying for parking. She paid for the gas. I drove my hybrid car and set my cruise at 65 all the way home as the traffic was pretty mild. I dog sat 3 days for my daughters dog. She and her fiance dropped him off and picked him up after work. They moved out last week. He’s a covid pup and has never been alone all day. He’s adjusting nicely but I hope they continue to bring him as I am not. I miss my granddog.
5. I did turn on my heat as we’ve had some pretty cold days and nights here. I’m keeping it set as usual at 62 during the day and 58 at night. I’m wearing a fleece jacket during the day and adding an extra blanket to my bed.


Katy October 18, 2022 at 9:26 am

Boxes, bubble wrap and peanuts . . . Oh my!


Bee October 19, 2022 at 3:10 am

I’m glad you are able to see your grand dog. Dogs are so much company. I believe that helping each other is a major component of a successful frugal life. Enjoy the fall colors …


Jill A October 18, 2022 at 5:22 am

As far as the charging port on your son’s phone, my daughter had the same issue. The repair place kindly didn’t charge her as all they needed to do was remove a ton of lint. They said that this is the #1 reason charging ports stop working. A good thing to know just in case anyone else is in the same boat one day.


Katy October 18, 2022 at 9:25 am

Yeah, we called first and the guy told us that 99% of charging port issues are due to lint.


rebecca October 18, 2022 at 12:45 pm

1. Using some almonds as dog treats as I ran out of the real ones. I put them in the dog treat jar as my girl is too smart……
2. Clearing some cookbooks out and donating them to the library for their monthly book sale.
3. I paid $3.45 a gallon for gas.
4. I bought a rotisserie chicken and already have made 3 meals from it. I will also freeze the bones to make broth.
5. Really appreciating the beauty of nature and being outside.


Bee October 18, 2022 at 5:43 pm

My children will always be the kids. It doesn’t matter how old they are. I have spent many years loving them, worrying about them, protecting them, teaching them and caring about them. I just can’t stifle the Mama Bear within. Katy, I think it’s wonderful that you celebrate birthdays together. My family is scattered and I long to spend a birthday with all my chicks.
1. My son will be married this coming weekend. Although I wish the festivities were a more manageable size, I realize this is not how my son rolls. He is a people collector and literally has every friend he has ever made. So I’m trying to be frugal where I can. I have returned all unwanted or unneeded items related to wedding immediately for a refund. I have done all the centerpieces and decorations for the Rehearsal Dinner/ Welcome Party with the help of friends and Trader Joe’s. I borrowed a pair of earrings to go with my dress, and I am wearing a pair of shoes that I already have already have. It’s not a lot in the big picture, but every little bit counts.
2. I reviewed the automatic payments coming out of my bank account each month. I cancelled two streaming service that we weren’t using often.
3. I bought some essentials at Target. I used the company App and saved $13. I then scanned my receipt to Fetch and IBotta and received a bonuses.
4. I filed a complaint with the Florida Department of Insurance regarding the handling of my recent automobile accident by my insurer. Hopefully, I can get some resolution. Meanwhile, I’m still driving my beloved Volvo wagon with a small dent in the fender that the insurance company considers a total loss. Scoundrels!
5. I am doing all the usual things – drinking primarily water,cooking simple meals at home, brewing my own coffee, reading library books, selling a few things on eBay and trying to make sense of the chaos.


Ruby October 19, 2022 at 8:56 am

Bee, best of luck with the wedding and with getting your car taken care of. We do not have car insurance to literally be taken for a ride!


Christine October 19, 2022 at 2:53 pm

Enjoy the upcoming wedding! It seems the planning for big events takes months or years and then it’s all over in a matter of hours so try to enjoy every second of it. It sounds as if you’ve done your part as frugally as possible. BTW I too wore shoes I already had to my son’s wedding last February…no one noticed a thing and I was comfortable all evening not to mention I saved some $$$ by wearing them.


A. Marie October 20, 2022 at 8:51 am

Bee, I join Ruby et al. in best wishes for the wedding. I hope you can put all anxieties on hold and just enjoy the moments.


Jill A October 19, 2022 at 7:41 am

Bee, I hope you have a great weekend and your son’s wedding goes off without a hitch.


Anne October 19, 2022 at 8:11 am

You said you went to see the original “Invisible Man” made in 1993. Did you mean to say 1933?

Also loved your hack to get the balances back on your arcade cards. I, also, would have hated to lose that.


Ruby October 19, 2022 at 8:51 am

Katy, your tip on using canned air to blow out the charging port fixed my husband’s phone. Thank you!


Roberta October 19, 2022 at 10:49 am

1. Helped a neighbor “declutter” before a move, but it was mostly just helping her pack. I would have loved to get rid of a lot of things she’s choosing to move, but it’s not my choice. She paid me for my time, and gave me a ton of nuts, dried fruit and other miscellaneous food she’s not going to move.
2. Working three days a week most weeks. I could do more, but I’d rather work the food bank and spend a week day doing chores than waste a weekend day catching up. I do get to bring home food for the chickens from the food bank, and leftovers for us as well because I go at the end of their week.
3. Trying to eat down the freezer and pantry, instead of buying new food. Menu planning to avoid succumbing to inertia, but it’s hard. Last night we made flatbread pizza with Trader Joes Lavaash (from the food bank) and whatever random bits needed to be eaten from the fridge. I will definitely do that again! I love the lavaash for crust!
4. More mending. I have a pile of wool socks to do tonight, finished a pair of jeans for me (which I am wearing right now, at work!). Watching Father Brown on BritBox while I mend.
5. Leftovers for lunch, hanging out laundry, opening and closing windows to keep the house temperate (some days are hot, some a cold).

Here’s the recipe for the spinach casserole I made last week (or the week before?). A. Marie asked for it, and I finally got around to posting it. It was really popular with the whole family, and used up stale bread as well as way-too-much spinach.

1 pound of chopped spinach.
Cook and thoroughly drain.

4 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup Swiss cheese or other shredded cheese
1 cup bread, cubed
1/2 cup green onions, sliced
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

Combine in bowl and add cooked greens. Pour into a greased 2-quart baking dish. Cover and bake at 375F for 25-30 minutes, or until set.


Christine October 19, 2022 at 2:57 pm

Sounds delicious and inexpensive. Nice meatless alternative for a meal. With the eggs, milk and cheese it’s got plenty of protein. Thanks!


A. Marie October 20, 2022 at 7:34 am

Thanks, Roberta. I’m guessing (or at least hoping) that this can be adapted for other cooked greens, such as kale–which the local deer hordes avoid till they’ve eaten everything else, and which I thus still have a lot of.


Selena October 20, 2022 at 7:51 am

Katy – as an FYI, I haven’t been receiving email notification of new posts. I signed up again but I am not sure the whole verification process is working.


BettafrmdaVille October 20, 2022 at 8:13 am

1. checked my 4 credit cards to see which had the best points to buy on Chewy. (It was Capital One). Signed up for auto-ship for 5% savings. I just popped back on to see how much that saved me, when I realized that it did not give me a discount on one item, so I contacted CS. So thanks, FFT – you just saved me $1.32!
2. While checking my credit cards, realized that I was AGAIN charged for an auto-subscription that I had cancelled before free period was up & that I was wrongly charged last month (successfully contested it). Saved $4.99. I also deleted the account entirely so to prevent it from happening again next month.
3. Partner signed up for Hulu (football season) so I went ahead and suspended Netflix until January, when I’ll switch back (Hulu live is expensive, but I know I will not win this battle).
4. Trying to harvest the very last beans on the vine before I pull them down (shelling them for stewing beans rather than eating them as green beans) and the last of the tomatoes. Found a hidden spaghetti squash while doing so and I am utterly delighted!
5. I wanted to make a winter squash soup, in particular with a red kuri. Switched to Blue Hubbard when I saw it was .70 per pound cheaper at the grocery store. Also bought one lemon from discounted rack.
Bonus: Going for no eating out & no food waste this week! We will see if I am successful.


Susie's Daughter October 20, 2022 at 10:05 am

1) Apparently it was “crumb” day in my household as I food processed some positively elderly hot dog/hamburger buns that could not go back (in good conscience) into the freezer again. Two bags of bread crumbs for the freezer instead. Then I pulverized the four opened – and thus stale – packages of graham crackers. How did we have four? Who knows, but now we will have Blueberry Cheese Pie instead.

2) Seriously contemplating leaving a well-known weight loss program/app as they have changed it again. And not for the better in my opinion. I know what I need to do. And I’ve done it before. In fairness, the program was really helpful in reshaping habits when I started 18 months ago. But it was also half price then too.

3) Going through my closet a bit at a time to donate what I do not wear. It shouldn’t be “renting” space in my (small) closet if I am not going to wear it.

4) Loving “Miss Scarlet and The Duke” on PBS Passport and trying not to binge watch the whole season in a week. My monthly gift to PBS is more valuable to me than any other streaming service I have.

5) Drinking water, making my own coffee, still hanging out laundry, cooking with what is on hand and reading NCA.
Stay well, friends!


Bethany M October 21, 2022 at 3:54 am

I haven’t been using my Swagbucks account for over a year. Decided to cash out whatever points I have. Got a $15 gift card to Burger King that we’ll use on our travels in November.

I wanted to make a new recipe that included ginger paste, but it was double the cost of fresh. Bought the fresh and made my recipe and then made a delightful drink and hoping to make some refrigerator pickled ginger for sushi.

A friend at church with the same make and model van said to let him know when we need to change the brakes. He’s already done it on his van and he’ll help us DIY. Yea!

The hospital wanted me to prepay $75 for labs. I let them take it up with insurance first as I’ve never received a bill for labs. Have yet to get that bill. Sometimes I think they just shuffle papers around and then say, “Here’s your estimated payment.” (Without even looking at your plan.)

Didn’t buy an ice cream cone to slurp in front of the camera to a nation full of people giving up such luxuries and then say “Our economy is strong as hell.”


Jill D October 21, 2022 at 11:16 am

My helpful lab technician saved me hundreds of dollars this morning by flagging a blood test the doctor hadn’t coded as “medically necessary”. She couldn’t get a code for it so we skipped it until I could get a response from the doctor about why he had ordered it in the first place. Thank goodness for her! The rest of the morning has been a %*&$-show but at least we got off to a good frugal start.


Bethany M October 22, 2022 at 6:04 am

Great catch. Unexpected medical bills no bueno!


Cindy in the South October 22, 2022 at 3:16 pm

Love your birthday adventures!


Selena October 22, 2022 at 7:06 pm

Any ideas re: using up sweet-n-sour packets from Chinese takeout? Soy sauce doesn’t seem to be multiplying as fast. We don’t cook any Asian food at home so using up is a challenge.


Mary in Maryland October 23, 2022 at 11:50 am

MIx it with hot sauce and use it as barbeque sauce??


Katy October 23, 2022 at 9:04 pm

Mix it into meatloaf?


Jennifer October 23, 2022 at 4:59 pm

I love your birthday days!

1 – Picked almost all tomatoes prior to the first frost and put in paper bags to ripen.

2 – Doing yard clean up ourselves. Mowing to mulch the leaves, picking up sticks to have a fire in the firepit this week. Moved and divided a forsythia bush. it had taken over a flower bed out front. Now it is split into 3 and along our back fence where it can spread all it wants.

3 – Used a free hotel night on our weekend trip to Niagara Falls. Ended up only costing $200 for 2 nights in a luxury hotel. Parking and breakfast delivered to our room were free. Entertainment was mostly free stuff.

4 – Got my free covid booster and received a $5 cash back coupon. Used it to get some free Halloween candy. Dh got it too and is using his to buy batteries.

5 – Dh cut his own hair. Gave the dog a bath ourselves. Cleaned our own house. Entertainment is youtube videos or free sports on TV. We don’t pay for any streaming services or cable. A few years ago we invested in an antenna and get 5 local channels on it.


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