Five Frugal Things

by Katy on January 16, 2023 · 103 comments

  1. My 18-year-old niece and her boyfriend are visiting from the East coast, which gave me a proper kick in the tuchus to pull my son’s childhood room back in order. (He moved out last year and absconded with all his bedroom furniture.) I’d already sourced a bed frame from the Buy Nothing Group, to which I added a full-size futon we already owned. I’d added a nubby foam pad last year when my sister visited, but my son is emphatic that it was still uncomfortable. I caved in and splurged on a fluffy $28 mattress pad from Bezos, which should help. I also pulled a chair, table and decor items from around the house and the room is put together once again, but more importantly is back to full function.

    My daughter also moved out last year, taking her furniture but left piles of random stuff and a thick layer of dust. My goal for this year is to force her to go through her belongings and gradually gather what is needed to turn it into attractive and functional room. Both kids stop by the house multiple times per week, (the lure of a stocked refrigerator!) and often want the option to chill out  in their old rooms.

    Our 1914 house is sizable, with four big bedrooms, a large storage space/attic, as well as a full basement. (Plus the single bathroom!) So it would easy to let the kids’ old bedrooms lie dormant as we have no current need for them, but it bothers me to have unfinished projects and it’s good for the kids to know they have a backup place to rest and recharge their batteries.

  2. I finally broke down and got a haircut. Ideally I would’ve returned to my beloved Supercuts training center for a sweet free cut, but they appear to have changed the way they put the word out for potential clients. (It used to be a Facebook page, but it seems to have been abandoned.) Anyway, I was scrolling Facebook and came across an ad for a $10.99 haircut at Great Clips, which is apparently my price point.

    $15.99 later ($5 tip) and my freshly bobbed hair is approximately 8 inches shorter and can now stop wrapping around my throat at night.

  3. • I made a batch of Hasselbeck potatoes with some potatoes that were thisclose to hitting the compost.
    • I sold a $35 stuffed animal, a $25 security blanket/plush and a pair of Victorian style boots for $90 on eBay. Update: I mailed out the wrong security blanket and will lose some money paying for the return. I’ll mail the correct one out and eat the cost as an apology.
    • I continue to print my eBay labels at the library for free.
    • I donated a small bag of stuff to Goodwill and made sure to get a donation receipt for next year’s taxes. Sometimes people put random stuff like picture frames, bulky toys, etc in my Little Free Library, so I donate them for the tax deduction. Books, people. Little free libraries only have room for books!
    • Enjoying the seventh season of Shetland through my sister’s trial subscription to Britbox. • My son and I drove through a Dutch Bros. kiosk and redeemed my free birthday coffee, which I had them split into two cups.
    • I washed a load of my daughter’s laundry as her apartment complex’s dryer isn’t working. I found three socks with holes so I darned them for her.
    • My husband changed the oil on both cars and was even able to find sale price motor oil.

  4. My #4 is a deliberate “frugal fail.” I’ve spent a fair amount of money on restaurant meals this week, as I wanted to be able to treat my niece and her boyfriend to some of Portland’s restaurant culture. Save money where you can so you can splurge in other areas.

  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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{ 103 comments… read them below or add one }

Sandra Hendry January 16, 2023 at 9:42 am

Pretty as ever. Look forward to your post every week. My five frugal things:

1. Cleaned and organized the freezer. A good reminder to use up my saved treasures.

2. Started a pot of split pea soup with frozen ham broth and a leftover ham bone from the freezer.

3. Cleaned and organized the pantry. Found more lost items such as crushed peppermint candy leftover from Christmas cookie making, also 1/2 a pkg of brown sugar that had hardened to a rock.

4. Made a delicious peppermint syrup with the crushed peppermint candy. We had it over vanilla ice cream for dessert last night and it was magical. Made brown sugar syrup with the half bag of hardened brown sugar and then added it to a partial bottle of maple flavored syrup. We both agreed that it was a win.

5. Three friends and I went to a free local concert on Saturday night. Great to get out, share some wonderful music, and feel alive.


Mary in Maryland January 16, 2023 at 9:54 am

1. The key fob for our 17-year-old Prius died. Purchased a new battery (7.40 at CVS) and replaced the dead one within 24 hours. Thank you, youtube.
2. Someone from the Timebank wanted help decluttering. She had had fifteen 40 gallon bins stored in a shed for four years. The shed owner reclaimed his shed and dropped them off. She declined all my suggestions–“Toiletries that have been stored outdoors are generally pretty bad after four years.” “You don’t need 57 partial notebooks.” “You need a box for important papers.” So mostly I just strove to keep her on task. When I asked why she was throwing away slippers, she said she bought a new pair. I came home with two pens, slippers, business envelopes, and credit card envelopes. Also Freecycled a couple boxes of stuff for her.
3. I took a free three-hour workshop from a quilt teacher. It was good, but I don’t need the months long course. Great to be able to figure that out ahead of time. Since 2000 signed up for the freebie, I bet she was able to fill the long course.
4. I was going to let go of the curtains I took down in our bedroom (I love seeing the trees). Then I realized they fit the windows in the guest room. And there they are!
5. I’m knitting fingerless gloves for the Mister for his upcoming birthday.
6. Our neighbors had three huge trees taken down in their back yard without using a crane. Four guys with ropes and a chain saw. I spent whole days watching despite it being terrifying. Better than a movie—those guys understood vectors on a very deep level.


Ecoteri January 16, 2023 at 10:45 pm

@Mary in Maryland what is Timebank?
Also, we had a couple of very tall fir trees taken down in a previous home’s backyard – no possible options for a crane, so the faller climbed, roped, cut segments and let them down on pulleys. over and over. We hired a friend to come and saw it all to stove lengths, and used that wood to heat the house . Still cost more for the felling than we got in firewood, but it WAS a sweet thing anyway to warm our home..


Mary in Maryland January 17, 2023 at 6:37 am

Timebank is an organization where you get credit in hours for helping others and can use your hours to have others help or do things for you. You can check out the setup on


Ruby January 16, 2023 at 10:17 am

Katy, your hair looks great!

I have to thank who ever recommended the book “Laundry Love” because it saved the day when my husband got shoe polish on the new rug.

Five frugal things:
1. Bought that rug and a much needed box grater with $10 Kohl’s cash, 15% off promo code and free shipping.

2. Shopped around for bags for our vacuum cleaner and wound up saving $12 buying them on eBay. Also bought some replacement teaspoons after my husband ground one up in the garbage disposal.

3. I finished eating a jar of peanut butter that had a best by date in November of last year.

4. Constructed Sunday night supper around a package of bacon with a looming best by date. It has been my experience that bacon is not kidding about those dates. The family enjoyed it.

5. Juiced a big bowl of mandarin oranges that were too sour. Added a little sugar to the juice and mixed it in with some regular orange juice. It tastes fine.


Liz B. January 16, 2023 at 7:53 pm

I’m a big fan of the book Laundry Love! I haven’t adopted all of his methods yet, I had a lot of “a-ha” moments listening to the audiobook.


Karen A. January 16, 2023 at 10:40 am

1. Began making concerted efforts to wash out my ziploc (store brand) bags, and get as many uses out of them as possible. Haven’t thrown out one in two weeks. Baby steps, here.

2. Managed to avoid food waste by refreshing limp lettuce and had many delicious salads.

3. Made a fantastic ham and bean soup with a giant ham bone from the freezer–it was so big I had to ask my husband to saw it in half to fit it in the crockpot, but it was worth it; I got over half a pound of meat off that thing after cooking.

4. Read library books and resisted the lure of my Bezos rewards points to buy new books I don’t really need; used the points for things we DO need, instead. And, well, okay, some drawing pens. I’m not made of stone.

5. Used reward points from doing online surveys to get a $10 gift card for groceries, and made the executive decision that eggs are strictly for baking now, not a meal/protein source. If I made fried or scrambled eggs for my family, I’d have to use at least 10 eggs to make enough to go around (four boys=double servings). However, with 2 eggs I can make a tasty pan of cornbread as a good side with soup, so the eggs go farther. Eggs are so expensive these days!


Marcia January 16, 2023 at 11:02 am

Katy, your haircut is so pretty! I love your shirt and beaded necklace, it is a lovely
look. I never comment but wanted to today. Your blog is my favorite and your the kind of Mom I am, I admire you so much!


Marie-Josée January 16, 2023 at 11:04 am

Katy, your hair is lovely! Yay for the restaurant meals, company and change from your regular routine.


A. Marie January 16, 2023 at 11:42 am

Katy, I think you’ve inspired me to get several inches chopped off my own mane soon. I haven’t had a haircut since July and look like Medusa.

Now, FFT, A “Chicken Cycle” Edition:

(1) I roasted a whole chicken (from the freezer) on Saturday night for my next-door neighbor’s 84th birthday. I hadn’t roasted a chook in a long time and was trying a different method, but it came out fine, and I think my neighbor enjoyed our little party. (It was just the two of us; the Bestest Neighbors were traveling home from London.)

(2) I then made a chicken salad with the remaining meat, and used the carcass for a small batch of stock. (I threw a lot of onion skins from the hydrator into the stock, so it came out pretty dark. Actually, I like it that way.)

(3) I am currently using some of the stock to make a mulligatawny with lentils.

(4) The mulligatawny recipe I’m using as a jumping-off point (I almost never follow a recipe word for word any more) calls for garam masala, and although I thought I had some in the pantry, I didn’t. So I quickly looked up a recipe for garam masala and put in the approximate equivalent amounts of the components I did have on hand.

(5) And if it’s January, I must be decluttering: I’ve put together five boxes of books for my local secondhand bookstore to assess, have given three more boxes to a local library that’s still running book sales, and am starting to put things aside as donations to two charity auctions coming up this year.


Ruby January 16, 2023 at 7:06 pm

A. Marie, today I pulled the carcass of the Christmas duck out of the freezer and used it to make the stock for a pot of leek-lentil-barley soup. There were tiny bits of meat left on it that were picked off and added to the soup. It made six cups of outstanding soup.


Cindy in the South January 16, 2023 at 11:52 am

Beautiful hair! 1. Tornadoes Thursday: I quickly finished court and tried to get to my son’s house two hours north. System was supposed to come in a couple of hours, I thought. I pulled off on side of road, after my phone went off with tornado warning, and I saw it’s rain wrapped self crossing the road, but it was up in the air at the time I saw it. That particular tornado eventually made its way to Selma, touched down, and did extensive damage . Later found out my former boss, who lives in Selma, lost his roof . The frugal part was I and a little student in the car behind me, didn’t get in middle of it. I cannot wear Ruby red slippers like Dorothy. 2. As if that was not enough excitement, I (and the little student behind me) continued north, after that 1st tornado passed over, and had to wait thirty minutes for road to be cleared outside of Greensboro for yet another tornado I did not even know about. That one was on the ground and destroyed a couple of homes and lots of debris over the road. I apparently picked up debris in my tires and had to have four new ones the next day. Expensive but still cheaper than a new car, or being in hospital … or dead. 3. My new boss was sworn in on Saturday and I wore my regular work clothes along with an old fancy sweater that was my mother’s. So no new clothes for a fancy occasion. 4. I did make homemade chicken salad from leftover chicken. That is all I have for ya.


janine January 16, 2023 at 12:09 pm

What an adventure! Glad you are alive and well.


Cindy in the South January 23, 2023 at 9:45 am



A. Marie January 16, 2023 at 1:06 pm

Cindy: Ai yi yi for your #1 and especially your #2! But as you say, you’ve survived, and that’s the most important thing.


Cindy in the South January 23, 2023 at 9:45 am



Lindsey January 16, 2023 at 1:13 pm



Cindy in the South January 23, 2023 at 9:45 am

Yikes indeed….lol


Christine January 16, 2023 at 3:12 pm

Glad you’re still among the living Cindy! Holy Smokes…sounded like a close one!


Cindy in the South January 23, 2023 at 9:46 am

Thanks! Me too…lol


MB in MN January 16, 2023 at 6:34 pm

Cindy, so glad you survived!


Cindy in the South January 16, 2023 at 6:41 pm

Thank y’all! It was certainly an adventure! All I could think about myself was you have never even been to Kansas, you cannot sing worth a d$&@, and you definitely do not have Judy Garland’s looks…. Lol. It is also January! What kind of twilight zone is this……


Ruby January 16, 2023 at 7:08 pm

Thank heavens you are both okay! That is way too much excitement for January. Heck, tornado season doesn’t start ’til March, unless the rules changed.


Katy January 16, 2023 at 8:46 pm

You’re so matter of fact, but you must have been scared.


Cindy in the South January 17, 2023 at 2:09 pm

Oldest son was at ground zero, briefly trapped in basement, during 2011 Tuscaloosa tornado. I totally flip out about my kids but I am usually pretty cool headed with myself and do what I need to do in dangerous situations. The damage in Selma is unbelievable.


Jill A January 17, 2023 at 1:04 am

I can’t imagine how scary that must have been.


Bee January 17, 2023 at 4:53 am

Cindy I’m glad you are okay. I wish it could be sunny and 72 everyday. My DH was flying home Thursday from Atlanta when that storm ripped through the South. As the storm was approaching, they loaded his plane and taxied out onto the runway where air traffic control had them sit for over 2 hours. He said the plane was shaking the winds were so strong. A tornado even touched down nearby. He is a seasoned traveler, but this week he decided to make the 6 hour drive to Atlanta instead of flying.


Cindy in the South January 17, 2023 at 2:12 pm

I don’t blame him one bit! I drive to and fly out of Atlanta alsoeven though it takes me like 4 or 5 hours, depending on traffic.


janine January 16, 2023 at 12:02 pm

1. I might have a ham bone in the freezer – thanks for everyone’s ham bone meal reports!
2. Had a Zoom book club meeting this morning. Reviewed “Wilmington’s Lie”, a book about an insurrection against the Black population by white supremacists in 1898. Borrowed book from the library. Not an easy read.
3. Took down Christmas Tree. Free curb pickup in January.
4. Checked to see what the balance amounted to on an old gift card from Marshall’s- $29.45! Expected around $3-4 so am delighted to do some free shopping/spending in the low-spend month of January.
5. In a small town north of our city found some $1 deals in a Dollar General which have disappeared around here. A good sized bottle of laundry soap etc.


Heidi Louise January 16, 2023 at 12:12 pm

Thank you to Coral Clarke and Mary Ann for recommendations in the post at the start of the year of “Factfulness: Ten reasons we’re wrong about the world — and why things are better than you think”, by Hans Rosling. I found his evidence and explanations of how to look at a world that might sometimes seem overwhelmingly bad to be helpful and hopeful, and very accessible reading. My library had the book and he has done some TED talks, though I haven’t looked them up.


Juhli January 16, 2023 at 5:09 pm

My son gave me that book for Christmas and I need to get on with reading it!


Coral Clarke January 16, 2023 at 11:41 pm

Sometimes we have to look for Hope with a magnifying glass, when we find it, it’s good to share it! Glad you, also , enjoyed it


Roberta January 16, 2023 at 12:50 pm

1. My son’s windshield got a chip in it, and he was planning to pay to get the whole dang thing replaced. Fortunately, it was a small crack down low, and I was able to stop the progression with a little super glue.
2. We are south of the major water troubles in California, but we’re still staying home and trying not to drive in the rain. Drinking hot tea, cooking at home, reading library books, proof reading essays for my daughter’s college admissions.
3. We’ve switched to flax seeds for eggs in baking, and we’re only using real eggs where absolutely necessary. Our chickens have not been laying, and we have been showing them cookbook instructions, but they remain unimpressed. Flax seeds worked great in orange-cranberry scones for breakfast.
4. We were given an entire grocery bag of blueberries. A lot of the berries were too squishy to be desirable, so those were given to the unproductive chickens, but we sorted over two gallons that were keepers. Most were frozen for the future, four cups became no-pectin blueberry jam, and about a pint were washed with cider vinegar and water and kept for fresh. They kept for three days, and I’m thrilled with fresh blueberries in January!
5. With the infusion of blueberries, my freezer is incredibly full again. A couple of dry good items that were being stored in the freezer had to come out, and “what is bulky and in the freezer?” is the basis for meal prep decisions. Tonight is pasta with roasted tomatoes and nettles (instead of spinach), and a jar of pumpkin puree is coming out to become pumpkin bread later this week, for breakfasts.


Ecoteri January 16, 2023 at 10:57 pm

@Roberta, when my gals slow down I grumble then plug in a light. if I am organized it is on a timer, if not it is on all the time. cheapest egg quantity producer I know of, after about 3 weeks you will be awash in too-many-dozens…
Our vehicle insurance covers window chips, once I heard of that I get in right away to get them repaired. My son, before he know this, bought a cheap repair kid (under $25) and used it on several chips. Actually, his vehicle was so old they might not have had that coverage, it is built in for the newer insurance packages…


Bee January 17, 2023 at 5:05 am

So many berries! Time to make blueberry-lemon scones! BTW, in Florida, if you carry comprehensive coverage on your vehicle, your windshield can be repair or replaced without paying the deductible. However, since insurance is regulated at the state level, coverage differs from state to state. I am a big believer in doing an insurance check up once a year to make sure your coverage is in line with your needs.


Roberta January 19, 2023 at 1:42 pm

Sadly, our insurance does not include chip repair. I found this out last time I got a chip!

What kind of light do you need? Like, just a normal “living room light,” or does it need to be specialty?
(I really, really hope it’s a normal light, and I am imagining my chicken coop with a fancy living room chandelier I curb pick from somewhere!)


Babette January 16, 2023 at 12:51 pm

1. Got most of weeks groceries at Aldi’s (my new favorite store) for 55.76
2. Stop at Stop & Shop for six jars of Teddy’s salt free peanut butter (3 smooth, 3 super chunky) a dollar off a jar, salt free crushed tomatoes, a 2fer of bags of sweet onions, and seltzer. Total $31. (Total grocery bill used to exceed 150 before I switched strategies
3. Finished crocheting two hats that had sat unfinished for a year. Now I have two fine hats, one a beret and one a watch cap.
4. Prepped for a week of in office lunches
5. Finished book club book – Plainsong by Kent Haruf, took it out from by library via Libby.


Ava January 16, 2023 at 4:12 pm

Babette, did you love Plainsong? I did. His book Eventide continues the story. I think all his books are great.


Jill D January 16, 2023 at 5:25 pm

#5 – wonderful book. Read it years ago and think I’ll re-read it now. Thank you for the prompt.


Ecoteri January 16, 2023 at 11:00 pm

@Babette, Ava and Jill D. thanks for the name Kent Haruf. I went to the library to look for his book(s) and discovered he wrote Our Souls at Night, which is a LOVELY Robert Redford Jane Fonda film that I have watched at least 3 times and I am so not a movie person.


Ava January 17, 2023 at 8:07 am

And the book is better.


Patricia Koernig January 18, 2023 at 12:36 am


Patti January 16, 2023 at 1:16 pm

FFF: This past weekend we went on a coastal trip for my husband to run in a marathon race. This week I will host two dinners – one for my church circle and one for my Bunko group. It is not a cheap week but I have done my best to make the expenses lighter by:
1) Took drinks, snacks, and breakfast items to make no purchases on the road and once we arrived at our destination. Other meals were included in the race package.
2) Downloaded a book onto my iPad so I did not have to lug heavy reading material. Packed very lightly (wore same clothing in different ways) because we were staying on an island only accessible by ferry and I carried my own bag to keep from tipping too much – although we did give a tips to the driver of the van.
3) Stayed with four couples in one house so we could divide the costs. We spent no money on extra entertainment – did a lot of talking and walking.
4) For my two dinners, I planned the menus way ahead of time and have made cheeseball appetizers and dessert pies and frozen them ahead of time. I have bought items that can be reused if there are leftovers. I am making everything from scratch, including tea and salad dressings. I looked at prices in the store for some items but just couldn’t bring myself to pay it. I have changed some of my plans to something similar to go with better cost options when I checked prices in the store.
5)For my Bunko gifts, I am only buying consumables as we all have just too much stuff. I am also supporting local businesses. So far I have bought a nice Olive Oil with dipping spices, Aioli, and houseplants.
6) I am also only using cloth napkins, china, silverware, glass drinking glasses, glass dessert plates, and other serving pieces I own.
We are welcoming more adventures now that we are retired. I also always plan my two activities for the first month of the year to take advantage of a clean house after Christmas and to get it over with for the rest of the year!!! It is also more cost effective to do them both in the same week.


Lesley January 19, 2023 at 6:32 am

Brilliant and resourceful, as always!


Lindsey January 16, 2023 at 1:29 pm

1. Arm wrestled a $450 refund from my friend’s insurance company. She is dying for Christ’s sake and they are denying her coverage for an ambulance ride…This is not frugal for me but it gives me the greatest joy to be able to pull money from an insurance company. And she REALLY needs the money. Slow dying is expensive.
2. Did two grocery shops, so $32 of free food.
3. Bought a new washer after the last one was ruined during the open garage door in the middle of winter fiasco. The husband went to big box store and picked out the simplest model, less to go wrong, had them write it up. Went to the grocery store and bought gift cards to cover the cost, which earned us gas points at the grocery store. Went back to the box store and paid for the washer with the gift cards. The promotion was 2 times the points for each dollar, so next time we fill the vehicle, it will be $1.50 off the per gallon price.
4. Husband went to a meeting and no one wanted the leftover donuts and oranges, so he brought home 13 donuts and six oranges. Donuts freeze quite well…and these were Cara Cara oranges, my favorites.
5. We babysat a hedgehog for a neighbor. We have one so adding another to the house for two weeks was no hardship; their female was not a rescue like our girl was so she is much nicer and easier to handle. Our poor girl trembles and hisses when we come near so we only handle her when we need to clean or she needs a bath. We refused payment but the next day we found a gigantic bag of hedgehog food and a bag of mealworms on the front porch.


Christine January 16, 2023 at 3:21 pm

Glad you won out over the insurance company. Your neighbor sounds like she can use a friend to fight for her at this point. I wish her the best. Like you say, slow dying is not cheap (or easy).


Karen January 16, 2023 at 5:17 pm

What type of gift cards did you use for the washer? Great idea!


Lindsey January 17, 2023 at 11:58 am

Home Depot purchased at Safeway and then the points are used at the Safeway gas station. I can barely remember when we bought anything of great cost without doing the gift card dance first. Another option is that Costco sells gift cards to various places at a discount. However, when Safeway has a 2x points sale, it works out better to go the gift card route. Sometimes they even have 4x points sale, and then we stock up.


Ruby January 16, 2023 at 7:12 pm

Lindsey, you are such a good person. And anyone who can force an insurance company to do what it’s supposed to do deserves some excellent karma.


A. Marie January 17, 2023 at 3:54 am

Lindsey: What Ruby said. I regard your pro bono dealings with other folks’ insurance companies as one of your superpowers.


Lindsey January 17, 2023 at 11:55 am

It is a matter of my personality faults turning into virtues in this instance—persistent, aggressive, not afraid of going up and over the heads of people to get what I want from someone with more authority. In other circumstances I am very annoying, but fighting insurance companies makes me feel like I am making my dead father very happy. He used to say, “Strong people are supposed to look out for the more vulnerable.”


Mati January 20, 2023 at 3:53 am

This is an actual service offered for pay, btw, and for someone fighting serious health problems, being able to hire a bulldog to deal with the insurance companies is an enormous relief. Have you considered stepping up your skillset and charging some folks by the hour?

Bee January 17, 2023 at 5:18 am

Glad you were able to help your friend! I can not imagine dealing with this insurance red tape when critically or terminally ill. I suffered a head injury last year and had to be attended to by our city rescue services. I had a terrible time trying to get the city to file with the insurance company. Once they did, insurance paid a portion of the cost, but I was still left with a a bill of nearly $300. Then I was sent a questionnaire by our health insurer who was trying to determine if someone else could be held responsible for the $400 that they did pay. Grrrr…


Cathy January 16, 2023 at 2:58 pm

I’m relieved to read that I’m not the only one making an ebay “whoopsie!” from time to time. It happens to the best of us.

Great haircut! 🙂


Christine January 16, 2023 at 3:02 pm

1. Today my friend and I along with her art teacher daughter enjoyed an afternoon at an art museum in a nearby city. There was no entrance fee as it is MLK Day. Nice to see families enjoying the exhibits as we strolled through the galleries. As an extra bonus there was a school orchestra playing in the main hall that we could hear everywhere we went in the museum.
2. I put up the linen 2023 calendar I won in a free raffle in December. I will use it as a dish towel after the year is finished.
3. I made a loaf of bread using a no knead recipe I found online. So easy and so good. It does require rising overnight so you need to prepare it the day before.
4. Two of our cloth napkins have finally bit the dust…raggedy and holey…so DH claimed them as car washing rags. We have four other cloth napkins to use so we are set for now with just the two of us (full disclosure: we usually use them more than once with us being the only ones using them). I will keep my eyes open at the thrift shops I frequent for more.
5. I purchased a turkey breast for $1.49 lb., the least expensive meat I could find. It’s in the oven now and will be good for at least a few meals and sandwiches.
Still keeping a close eye on electricity usage with the recent increase in rates, drinking lots of water, homemade iced tea, all coffee and tea made at home and brought in the car in traveling mugs, shopping for groceries once a month and using what we have on hand, reading library books and doing puzzles a friend has given me.


Jen January 16, 2023 at 3:28 pm

Cut hair cut! 8” is a lot and I am wondering if you were able to donate it or list it for sale for future Doll Hair! I never get random items in my Little Free Library, but that sounds kind of funny and now in wish I did. I only get the random Hare Krishna booklet now and then.


Katy January 16, 2023 at 8:33 pm

I also get a fair number of instruction manuals. I get that people feel bad recycling something that someone else could use, but please . . .


Jill A January 17, 2023 at 1:07 am

Do instruction manuals sell on Ebay?


Bee January 17, 2023 at 5:34 am

Owner’s manuals for cars, airplanes, boats, firearms and motorcycles do sell. I imagine there are other types of manuals that also sell, but I’vehad luck with all of these. I pick them up from time to time at estate sales and at the bins for very little and most bring $25 -50, but I did sell a Harley Davidson manual for $75.


Jill A January 17, 2023 at 6:51 am

Thanks Bee. I now have something else to keep an eye out for.

Katy January 17, 2023 at 12:19 pm

I definitely save a Harley manual, these ones are not old.

Tosha January 22, 2023 at 9:45 am

Heavy equipment manuals(dozers, backhoes) and farm tractor manual can be very worth while to flip.


Bee January 22, 2023 at 4:12 pm

Some tech manuals are also desirable as well as brochures.

Jill A January 16, 2023 at 3:54 pm

I’m also trying to get my daughter to sort through her bedroom so I can use it as a guest room in the future. It’s like pulling teeth.
1. I returned an item at Meijer that I didn’t gift at Christmas and also took my receipt and coupons I forgot to use last time I was there for a refund. I cashed in my pop can receipts too.
2. I picked up only the groceries on my list.
3. I vacuumed and cleaned my car at home.
4. I took my family to dinner for my daughter’s birthday but returned home for homemade carrot cake after.
5. I picked up Christmas clearanced Bert’s Bees lip balm for my daughter’s stockings for next year and thrifted another stocking stuffer at Goodwill.


Coral Clarke January 16, 2023 at 11:38 pm

Glad you enjoyed it, sometimes we have to look for Hope with a magnifying glass, but when we find it we need to share it!!


Coral Clarke January 16, 2023 at 11:44 pm

Ignore the misplaced reply above! Re your daughter, could you ask her to take the bags/ boxes an remove anything she wants before dropping it off at Goodwill for you?


Jill A January 17, 2023 at 4:13 am

LOL. That’s tempting but I think I’ll give her some time… she works full time, just moved into a new house that needs a lot of work and is planning a wedding.


JC January 16, 2023 at 4:15 pm

I love your hair Katy, it suits you!
Our weather is so sucky here that staying in and “doing frugal” is a treat.
1. Made a loaf of cream cheese cranberry bread to use up an opened brick of cream cheese and used leftover cranberry salad from DD.
2.thawed the turkey that was hanging out in my freezer, had a family dinner and passed out most of the leftovers.
3. simmered the carcass of the turkey on top of my wood stove overnight. Picked it clean and ended up with 1 quart bag of bits and pieces and 2 quarts of beautiful broth.
4. used a container of marked down portabella mushrooms and made stuffed mushrooms. I looked at a recipe but had to wing it because I didn’t have parmesan cheese so used pepper jack and ground homemade croutons for the breadcrumbs. I loved them!
5. turkey pickings are going into croquettes as I have a small amount of milk that needs used…so white sauce. We love croquettes.
bonus point…brought home the garbage from family house for my chickens. They aren’t laying real well right now but I am getting 2 a day.


Hawaii Planner January 16, 2023 at 4:33 pm

Sorry to hear about the eBay miss – it happens! And, super cute hair cut.

1) We are going skiing during “ski week” in February (not particularly frugal), but we cancelled the more expensive but preferred option, and went with a very inexpensive condo. It means more driving & more all day skiing for me, but I’m sure I can handle it. 😉
2) My husband took the teens skiing this weekend, so I used that time to be productive. After I dealt with our garage flooding, &our back patio. Good times for sure. We are good on rain for a while, Mother Nature! I batch prepped meals for the freezer, meals for the week, and made ham & split pea soup + rosemary & white bean soup for lunches for myself. I also made a loaf of French bread, to go with my soup dinner last night.
3) I used a Rite Aid reward, in store sale, and an iBotta offer to pick up a few things we needed. That rarely happens, as we don’t buy a lot that matches up in that way.
4) Uploaded all of my receipts to Fetch, menu planned, stuck to the list, avoided food waste… the boring stuff.
5) I also kept the heat much lower & bundled up, while the guys were out of town. I told myself it was more “homey” under the blanket.


Norma January 16, 2023 at 5:04 pm

Cute hair cut Katy,

I love your #4 and have a funny story about being frugal.. Because of my frugality we were able to take our sons camping for two weeks every summer and on a cruise every two years. My son was telling his college roommates about this. They said, “Wow your parents must be rich. To which my son replied “You should see the cars they drive.” At the time we were driving two ten year old Novas. My sons have continued my frugal ways. Older son just recently said he was raised by Cheap Mama and I wear that title as a badge of honor.

1. Had a meatless meal this week which DH actually enjoyed. He is such a meat and potatoes guy!!
2. Got a 10 pound bag of potatoes for less than the 5 pound bag. Will share with neighbor who is always bringing me goodies.
3. Getting our seriously ugly cabinets refaced. Not cheap but cheaper than buying all nee cabinets.
4. Purchased new handles for said cabinets from Amazon at a quarter of what it would cost at the hardware store.
5. Got another quarter from a wandering grocery cart at Aldi. What is with these people!!!


Karen B January 16, 2023 at 6:25 pm

Frugality has helped us do fun things, too. We currently are driving vehicles approximately 20 years old, but they continue to be reliable and my hubby chose them partly based on how easy they would be for him to work on. He can’t do all of our vehicle repairs, but does many. At the moment he is at the school of YouTube finding out how to fix the car door handle that today stopped working from inside the car.

I don’t know if it is the same in your area, but I collected quite a few quarters from Aldi carts before I found out that people frequently leave their quarter in the cart so the next person doesn’t have to hunt up a quarter, a Pay It Forward thing.


Texasilver January 16, 2023 at 6:42 pm

This happened to my sister’s car. My husband is a mechanic. He instructed her to put the window down & open the car door from the outside as it was on the driver’s side. He did have to order a new door handle to fix the problem. But opening the door with the window down was a tmporary fix. (Easier than climbing over the center console to get out.)


Katy January 16, 2023 at 10:50 pm

Thanks, I’m loving how short it is.


Jill January 16, 2023 at 5:31 pm

1. My daughter in law’s sister is in dental hygiene school. They charge $40 for a cleaning and exam which I took advantage of (no dental insurance right now). She is going to make a really good dental hygienist.
2. Move house (twice in one year!) and you’ll realize the abundance of blessings – and things – you have in your life. Still going through boxes and found some things to either sell on ebay or put on the Buy Nothing group. Unfortunately, you’ll also have a long list of things you need to source in your new place – Like rugs of different sizes than your old house.
3. Doing the unglamorous everyday things that one does – eat at home, take care of our grandson, go for walks, watch tv and read my library books. (Current favorite: Marple Twelve New Miss Marple mysteries)
4. Our son’s birthday is next week so I’ve been on the lookout for a homemade key lime pie recipe – his fave – and have made a few little purchases for him. One being an address book (with real paper pages) which I filled in with all the family addresses and birthdays that I could think of since he’s a dad now and actually sent Christmas cards – that he had to ask me all the addresses for. It might not be his favorite gift but it may be the most useful. 🙂
5. It’s not my frugalness but my niece has sent 3 big boxes of clothes for my grandson since she is done with babies. Sweatpants, jackets, shoes, socks and pajamas – so incredibly helpful.


rebecca January 18, 2023 at 10:21 am

This always gets rave reviews when I make it. I got the recipe off their bottle of key lime juice. So delicious and simple to make. I make whip cream for the topping.

Nellie & Joe’s Key Lime Pie
in Desserts, Recipes
9″ graham cracker pie crust
14 oz. can of sweetened condensed milk
3 egg yolks (whites not used)
½ cup Nellie & Joe’s Key West Lime Juice
Combine milk, egg yolks and lime juice. Blend until smooth. Pour filling into pie crust and bake at 350º for 15 minutes. Allow to stand 10 minutes before refrigerating. Just before serving, top with freshly whipped cream, or meringue, and garnish with lime slices.


Bee January 19, 2023 at 4:09 am

Nellie & Joe’s is the go-to recipe for most in Florida. I suggest a homemade crust and real whip cream.


BettafrmdaVille January 19, 2023 at 12:23 am

I just made David Lebovitz’ lime curd tart (with meringue) for a New Year’s Eve meal and it is FANTASTIC!


Jennifer January 16, 2023 at 5:52 pm

I love the haircut! And free food for the young adults that have moved out always entices them back lol

1. Did some cooking for the freezer this weekend. Double batch of pumpkin chocolate chip muffins, double batch of homemade biscuits and a batch of turkey sausage, double batch of pancakes so we had them as a breakfast and froze 3 portions worth

2. I have a friend that likes to meet after work for happy hour – this can get expensive obviously. We had today off work so I suggested morning coffee – much cheaper!

3. Sold an item on Ebay. Talked to my dd about listing some doc martins on Ebay – she is going to try the local route first but if no interest in a few days will list them.

4. Did some financial coaching for my 2 oldest kids. Talked through plans to pay off CC debt, reduce spending by cutting out monthly subscriptions, ways to save on groceries, etc. with oldest (24) My 22 yr old is trying to figure out a way to save money to move back to our area after graduation and set up a new apartment while supporting her fiance while he recovers from surgery (happening in May). They also need to find a job. I’m glad they came to me and they both seemed receptive.

5. Dh cut his hair, washed a bunch of ziploc bags, dh fixed the dishwasher himself, packed lunches all week last week.


Karen B January 16, 2023 at 6:03 pm

1) Son had the day off from school. He and I both love going to an outlet store that seems to have a lot of things that were either overstocks or returns and today all items were $3. Our best items today were a wallet (to replace my secondhand peeling vinyl wallet), a pair of pants, and, the very best, an alarm clock radio with battery backup and USB charging port, $3 each. We plugged in the alarm clock radio and I thought it was broken because it didn’t light up. My son spotted that the brightness was turned all the way down. That fixed it! I’ll bet it was returned because it didn’t light up due to the brightness setting! My frugal fail is the very sturdy step stool I bought to replace the one in the kitchen that has a splash of paint on it. I failed to notice how much smaller it is and it won’t work for me, I need every inch of extra height I can get, so it will be a gift for someone else in our Buy Nothing Project group. It may be the perfect size for a kid a little too short to reach the sink on their own.

2) In Buy Nothing Project this week I received a fake plant that looks perfect with the others on my kitchen windowsill and a non-prescription health supplement I take–the giver had been shipped the wrong strength and they shipped the correct one without requiring return. I gave away a bundt pan to someone requesting one.

3) We went to a movie today early enough to get the matinee price and 2 out of 3 of us ate lunch late to avoid buying snacks (the 3rd person came straight from work).

4) I took a free online dog training class last week that was mentioned by a friend and am seeing improvement in our dogs already. The first session included training calm, which was helpful today when a tornado siren went off. 2 humans, 1 medium dog, and one large dog were all stuck in the small safest part of the basement for a whole hour and they did very well compared to previously.

5) My very favorite: our son plans to go to college next year, close enough to live at home, but not close enough to make dropping him off and picking him up a good option. Unfortunately, public transportation is not a good option here, so we’re starting to look for an additional vehicle for him to use. When asked what features he would hope for, The answer wasn’t “new” or “sports car” or a specific model or even color. What he is hoping for is “fuel efficient”. I’m proud of his practical choices.


Juhli January 16, 2023 at 6:59 pm

Pleas share what dog trading online course you are using! We have an 11 month old puppy who could use the train calm session!


Karen B January 17, 2023 at 11:26 am offers a free 1 week online class just twice a year, once in the winter (which just happened) and once in the summer. She also offers in person training and online information for a fee. She is super nice and her training methods are positive.

My short description of 2 of the calmness techniques is (1) Leash sitting–you literally sit on their leash for 30 minutes or more with just enough leash for them to comfortably choose to sit or lay down next to you. They don’t get released until they’ve relaxed for at least a few minutes. If they fall asleep, you win. 🙂 It’s training the dog to relax themselves rather than constant bugging for attention, etc. (2) Place–combines sit, down, stay, relax in a specific assigned spot with a defined border such as a bed, crate, or even a towel on the floor. Start with one “place” spot and then transfer the knowledge to other assigned “place” locations. This is a good one during meal times for us as one of our dogs dives for dropped food and not all human food is edible for dogs. Since practicing these 2 techniques, I’ve also seen a decrease in window barking from our big guy (mostly at people walking their dogs, barking neighbor dogs, and postal carriers). He’s more often correcting himself and going to lay down on a bed away from the window.


Juhli January 19, 2023 at 3:26 pm

Thank you!


Katy January 16, 2023 at 10:47 pm

I’ve seen those kind of outlet stores on the internet, but haven’t seen that we have any in the Portland area. I’m very curious.


Karen B January 17, 2023 at 3:54 pm

This store sells all items for the same price (except a very few items set aside that are individually priced)., day 1 $7, day 2 $5, day 3 $3, day 4 $1, and day 5 all you can fit in a huge IKEA bag for $10.Days 6 and 7 they’re closed for restocking.`The bins have nicer stuff on the first day, but a lot of it is not worth $7. Supposedly people have found brand new iPhones in the bins right after opening on day 1, but I’ve never seen anything that much of a bargain. There’s usually a few items there’s a lot of. Yesterday it was dozens of a rubbery unicorn that when you squeeze it a mini ping pong ball pops out of it’s mouth. The week before it was Cocomelon (kids’ tv show) books. I’m hoping a teacher picked them all up on $10 bag day. There have been several times I got food items, sometimes slightly past the best by date, including gluten-free snacks. A lot of the items appear to be Amazon returns–some things have an Amazon label or are Amazon Basics brand and many are items Amazon sells. We happen to be within 45 minutes of an Amazon warehouse.


MB in MN January 16, 2023 at 6:10 pm

Nice haircut!

1. For our remaining six weeks in Sacramento, we will be alternating between an Airbnb and a relative’s guest house. We are very fortunate to be able to cobble this together on short notice.

2. Received a discount at the Airbnb since we will be staying there a lot, albeit at three different times.

3. Got free oranges from a relative’s tree.

4. Keeping food costs in check by buying just what we need for a few days at a time. Since we’re moving back and forth between places, we don’t want to haul and store more than we have to.

5. If we haven’t found a house by the time we return to Minnesota in March, some friends offered us their house for a month while they’re out of town. We are so grateful for their generous offer.


Ecoteri January 16, 2023 at 11:40 pm

1.My two youngest kids have moved out for (mostly) good – one lives in the loft over the barn-workshop, mind you. At Christmas when my mom (92 11/12s) was coming to stay for two days I finally bit the bullet, hired a wonder cleaner and got both of the rooms thoroughly cleaned and organized. I have two guest rooms with nicely made-up beds, now, and my son’s old room is also my exercise room, as well as having my childhood kitchen table as a wonderful work table set up and ready for me to sew and paint. When I have time, eventually! Paying the cleaner is Frugal, in my books as she has done what I was struggling to do, and now I can enjoy my home and do what I will find joy in doing, without having to clean up or clear space first, which uses up my available spoons.
2. My daughter is back from her 5 week New York adventure, and had eaten down her pantry before leaving. Groceries are cheaper in my smaller town, so she came up after work to visit her dad and then met me (her ‘Couponing old-lady’ mom, apparently) at the grocery store. Coupons are rare in my neck of the Canadian grocery world, but I can shop a flyer like there is no tomorrow. she was expressing shock at what she had spent as it was high $ for her, however once I went over her receipts she saw that the 5 bigger ticket items (nutritional yeast, cheeses, etc) were taken out, she had found so huge savings on items she was actually wanting. We were the last hour of the flyer, so they had pulled many of the sale prices, however I had taken the old flyer and we were able to confirm we were getting the deals – and I had remembered what WAS a deal. Go us!
3. I keep trying for no-spend months and am discovering I have a bit of a food-buying issue — now it is, at least, stuff on sale, and I do, at least, have plans for it. Next month will be even more out of the pantry. I couldn’t resist the 8 pound box of ginger for $1 though , nor the box of apples for $3 .
4. Found and used a Visa gift card that expires this month – $500 that I could have lost, ooops. Gor chicken feed with the last of it and that store is one of the few that has a system that takes the balance on the card rather than declining – which meant I could empty the card and pay the rest with cash. Kind of no-spend, if I look at it sideways?
5. Cut my son’s hair (again) – He has wild curly hair and we shave the bottom so I have the luxury of imperfection as the longer hair on top hides multiple sins. I AM getting better.
6. continue to do my exercise program that I bought once and can use forever. It works, when I work it, and is only 15 min three times a week, which I manage by gritting my teeth and repeating the mantra of “It is only 15 minutes!”. Seriously, though, I have found something that works well for me that I have proven I can stick with, so other January offerings aren’t tempting me…
7. Still eating the yogurt I made with milk ready to expire. Eating more eggs as I am trying to up my protein intake and lose a few pounds. Reduction in processed carbs means I am not tempted by sweets and fancy breads (well, I am, and am holding strong)


Pauline in Upstate NY January 25, 2023 at 6:36 am

Hi Ecoteri – would you share the name of the exercise program that you like? That sounds like a schedule I could manage! Thanks.


Michele January 17, 2023 at 5:59 am

1. Went out for my Bday Dinner last eve and got water. I believe in the save- in one- area- so- you- can- splurge- in- another- theory like Katy!
2. Returned a 6$ calendar to get the 1.25 one at Dollar Tree. Cute kittens on both and 5ish dollars to put toward other stuff.
3. Found 17 cents in coin return while waiting in line to return calendar.
4. Using up stuff in freezer to make meals and avoiding going to Sam’s which is my nemesis!!!
5. Invested in a used LL Bean Cardigan- living in Fl. requires layering- cold in AM, boiling in afternoons, and freezing AC elsewhere.


Heidi Louise January 17, 2023 at 8:08 am

And a happy birthday to you!
May all your splurges be balanced and worthwhile, (or something like that).


susanna d January 17, 2023 at 6:22 am

I love your new haircut, Katy! A recent joint effort from me and my husband resulted in my calico hair being five inches shorter and no longer approaching sister wife territory. “Calico hair” and “sister wife hair” are two expressions I learned from this site, and both of them had my husband laughing out loud the first time I said them.

1. Like I just said above, my husband cut several inches off the length of my hair while I cut in some new, shorter layers. Home hair cutting is a skill we added out of necessity in the early days of the pandemic. It’s saved us a ton of money – particularly for my husband, who used to get his hair trimmed once every three weeks. Ouch.
2. Freezer diving and pantry excavating had us both saying “How on earth did we end up with all this food?” And resolving to once again shoot for a $100 food budget this month. So far, I’ve spent exactly $7.25. Which now has me thinking “how low can we actually go?” Stay tuned…
3. We had also accumulated a crazy amount of fuel points, largely due to the store offering 4X the points on Fridays last month. It was no problem to change our shopping day to Friday, and we just saved $35 on gasoline as a result.
4. Intensely crappy weather has had us staying home every day except for one the past ten days. Or at least, not going anywhere that requires driving; we still go out for long walks/hikes most days. Ice is the worst, and we’ve been having so much of it. Freezing rain, freezing fog, rain turning to ice…you get the idea. Staying home is extremely frugal as long as we don’t do any online shopping. Which we haven’t. Yet.
5, We’ve been decluttering and finding all kinds of strange things. Nothing valuable, but it’s free entertainment. It’s amazing what can accumulate when a closet has a weird section that’s not really visible at first glance – and requires a flashlight to see anything in it.


Katy January 17, 2023 at 12:18 pm

Yes, I had definitely reached the level of “sister wife” hair!


Bee January 17, 2023 at 3:49 pm

Love your haircut!
I tried for years to have my adult children clean out their rooms. My eldest son took most of his things. However, the other two have dragged their feet. (They are 34 and 32 years old.) I had plans for these rooms. I eventually packed up the things they left behind, labeled the boxes with the contents, and placed them on shelving in the garage where they have remained ever since.
When my MIL died, my 65 year-old sister SIL still had things stored at her mother’s house. So I guess the question becomes when is it time to say enough already?
My FFT this week:
1. I used loyalty points to book a hotel room for my middle child who was heading back to graduate school. This allowed him to break up the drive and cost both of us absolutely nothing! He received a free breakfast too!
2. I went to an estate sale with a friend. I purchased a really cool domed butter dish which I really needed.It is 1930s Art Deco in design and was a cool $10,
3. Not frugal for me but frugal for my son and DIL – my husband and I took care of our dear grand baby (DGB) on Saturday night. Since we knew they would be late, we spent the night in my son’s guest room. We got up early and headed home. DH tried to talk me into a Starbucks stop on the way home, but I resisted.
4. I accepted a few odds and ends from my sister’s refrigerator. She was leaving town unexpectedly and gave me a few things that would have gone bad while she was gone.
5. I dropped a brand new 1/2 gallon carton of milk when putting it away and the carton split along the seam at the bottom. I turned it over quickly so it wouldn’t leak and poured it into a couple of mason jars. I was determined not to waste it,
I have been all the usual things, brewing my own coffee, eating simple meals at home, drinking primarily filtered water, batching errands and utilizing my library. I’m currently reading Mad Honey.

Wishing everyone peace and good health!


Juhli January 17, 2023 at 4:31 pm

I have to laugh at the long term storage of teen/young adult stuff. We took my younger son’s stuff to him and said here it is – enjoy! I don’t know what he did with it but it was a good laugh for all of us.


Selena January 17, 2023 at 8:01 pm

Once we got down adding onto our first house, my folks did the same thing. I have to admit younger kiddo has been better than older kiddo about “taking stuff” but in older kiddo’s defense, younger kiddo is local. Older kiddo had us bring out a couple of items “sans contents”. Full disclosure contents of one item were taken later. Alas one spare room is a holding area for donations. Covid hit then illness/deaths in family happened thus the items remain. I figure when older kiddo needs closet space during a visit, that will be the catalyst. But I know some stuff will end up in the other room lol.


Christine January 18, 2023 at 3:04 pm

We had so much stuff in our basement that belonged to our adult kids, particularly one, that when we were cleaning the basement we told them “Come and get your stuff. We’re renting a dumpster so it’s either your stuff or the dumpster’s stuff.” And we added please don’t tell us you still want it and could we hold it for another…fill in the blank…amount of time. Guess what? Nobody wanted any of it except an easel which he came and got. Our kids all live within a 40 minute drive from us so it wasn’t as challenging as it sounds.


Anne January 19, 2023 at 4:17 pm

Totally agree with you Christine. Just tell them to come and get it or it will be thrown out. They’ll make the decision quickly enough.


Jill A January 17, 2023 at 4:30 pm

How fun to be able to stay with DGB and help your son & DIL at the same time. Your butter dish sound beautiful. I also need one but every time I find one I sell it on Ebay.


Bee January 19, 2023 at 4:31 pm

I have sold many things that I wish I still had. Such is the life of the reseller! But there is always more.


rebecca January 18, 2023 at 10:36 am

Nice haircut, Katy!
1. I batched some errands.
2. A friend helped me with some chores and I will bake him a banana bread as a thank you. I have all the ingredients on hand.
3. I have two chicken carcasses in the crockpot right now. Hoping the broth is tasty. I’ve never done this before, so thanks to all who do and inspired me to try.
4. I watched “Julia” on hulu and “Bad Sisters” on appletv for entertainment. Both are excellent.
5. The usual-coffee from home, leftovers and no take out.


Kathy January 19, 2023 at 11:31 am

Aloha from Kauai
My frugal vacation:
Friends invited me to join them at their time share. Used air miles so airfare was only $11.20
We’ve stocked the kitchen with beverages, food, snacks, etc
Took the Napali sunset cruise on Tuesday (friends treat)
Went to Poipu parking, saw sea turtles and condo office had free root beer floats
Only items I bought for trip was new bathing suit and windbreaker
Taking lots of photos to make photo book


Katy January 19, 2023 at 1:58 pm

Reading this from my dim January living room, and I’m very happy that you getting to experience such a trip!


Selena January 20, 2023 at 7:49 pm

You’re not the only geographic area that is dim. We’ve had an unusual number of overcast days (albeit a bit warmer than normal – not that the low/mid 30s is warm to some folks). It can be hard to get motivated but extremely easy to sleep in and/or nap. And yeah, more lights usage than normal but better to be safe than have a medical expense.


Carolyn February 12, 2023 at 11:13 am

1. Made a very frugal meal in the crockpot. Potatoes, carrots, onions, garlic and venison chunks, with some celery, herbs and spices. All the vegetables except the celery were from our garden, and the venison was from the freezer, as my husband shot two deer last fall. We love the venison. To go with it, I made cornbread from scratch, no box mixes in our house.
2. Last week it was a batch of venison chili, vegetables except the beans were from our garden as well. We can a lot of vegetables, plus we froze blueberries and black currants from the garden.
3. Started ten flats with seeds a couple weeks ago. Five are peppers, the rest are tomatoes and different varieties of herbs. Seeds are far cheaper to buy and start than plants from the nursery. We plan to get them in the raised beds after memorial day, although we will get spinach, parsley, kale and lettuce, which are more cold tolerance in before that.
4. We bought a Vermont Castings wood burning stove, that will be installed later this month. It was not cheap, but with a $2000 tax credit, and plenty of wood on the farm, we won’t be buying wood.
5. Yesterday I took a seat and had my husband trim my hair. I have him do every other month, just about an inch each time so I keep it about the same length.
My two teen boys received their haircuts last week, my husband has been doing them for years, since they were quite young, so he has given them hundreds of haircuts, gotten a lot of practice, as well as saving a lot of money. He is quite good at doing them, so even though both are in high school, my older son a senior, both like the haircuts he gives them. I would hate to have to run them to the barbershop every 3-4 weeks and have to pay for them. The tools of clippers, shears, combs, hair clips and capes were definitely a wise investment. I can’t figure out why Katy would wait so long before getting her haircut when she could just hand her hair shears to her son, that has cut her hair previously, and tell him to give her a haircut. I would not trust either of my boys to cut my hair, but I don’t need to as that is my husband’s job, and I am quite happy with his work.


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