Non-Consumer Photo Essay

by Katy on July 29, 2015 · 24 comments

It’s time for another Non-Consumer Photo Essay, as sometimes a photo is simply easier better than words.

Please enjoy this photo of the money I found below the coin counting machine at my credit union. That’s $2.25 in free money, people!

Free money! You just have to the person willing to bend down to scoop it out from under the machine. No question that I am that person.

Free money

I stopped at the Habitat for Humanity Restore yesterday to drop off a light fixture and some miscellaneous lighting components. I took a few minutes to browse the store and was impressed with the 10¢ price on the small cans of wood stain. Ten freaking cents!

At this point you might be saying to yourself, “Ten cents is fine and dandy on a small can of stain, but I need a larger can!” Worry not, as the larger cans were priced at only a buck apiece.

They had a large and well organized selection of stains. Not to mention the paints and most anything else a regular hardware store would stock. Much of it looked brand new as well!

$1 stain

I no longer buy paper towels, but I do miss them when it comes time to wipe out my cast iron pans after seasoning. Luckily I’m still handed paper napkins now and then, which I gleefully clutch like Gollum bring home normally for cast iron swipage. 

My precious!

Zero waste paper towel Katy Wolk-Stanley

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

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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Bettypants July 29, 2015 at 11:40 am

I found 76 cents in the Qdoba change thing after I had paid. I had no idea who had been in front of me, or I would have spoken up.

Wow, those cans of stain are cheap.


Tracy July 29, 2015 at 12:05 pm

Cast Iron = the only reason I buy paper towels. It’s a lifelong problem I’m willing to deal with 🙂


Chrissy July 29, 2015 at 12:28 pm

We have long ago kicked our paper towel habit. My mother and MIL know that if they want paper towels when they are here they bring their own roll. Lol. They leave what’s left so we often have some for our cast iron pots or I will use a ratty washcloth cut up and throw it away after use.


K D July 29, 2015 at 12:55 pm

One day I stopped at the grocery store to return a free Red Box rental. Right next to it a guy was working on the CoinStar machine. He had the front opened and there was $.62 on the floor (it would have been covered if the front was closed). I had to really restrain myself from picking up the coins.

We stopped at a ReStore one time and didn’t think the prices or the selection were good. However, I thoroughly support the mission of Habitat.


Katy July 29, 2015 at 2:50 pm

I’m guessing that there’s a lot of variation between the different ReStores throughout the nation.


LT August 3, 2015 at 8:23 am

Our ReStore used to be priced very strangely… we bought a brand new bathroom cabinet & vessel sink for $130 when retail is over $500. Yet you might overpay for other things of worse quality. Once they moved to a new location, now it seems everything is priced pretty much the same as a hardware store or worse! I’m bummed, because you could find some great deals before the move.


Katy July 29, 2015 at 2:57 pm

So that would be B.Y.O.P.T?


Chrissy July 30, 2015 at 10:01 am


I like that. BYOPT. I promise to never be BYOTP!


Betty Winslow July 29, 2015 at 1:21 pm

I bring home all extra napkins from restaurant visits and drive-through trips, and we use them at the table for family. Ones that are not really dirty go into a bin under the sink and are used to wipe up greasy spills, wipe out frying pans, etc.


Carol M. July 30, 2015 at 10:20 am

I love the idea of using them twice…I’m going to try to do that.


Ruby July 29, 2015 at 1:27 pm

ReStore is awesome for paint, too. I got enough $1 a quart Benjamin Moore paint a few years ago to paint five rooms of our house. It worked out to less than $4 per room.

I do still buy a few paper towels, due to having a 15-year-old cat who vomits at least once a day. He’s not sick. He just eats too fast and it comes back up in short order. Otherwise, a nice collection of flannel rags helps us do the housekeeping.


Paula in the Yoop July 31, 2015 at 3:03 am

We tried donating paint to our ReStore and they don’t except any of that type of stuff. My guess is they did at one time and got overwhelmed with it all. Our area doesn’t do much in the recycling department. The local dump has a drop off for hazardous waste type products and paints, on the second Thursday from 9-noon each month. This is no exaggeration!


Chris July 29, 2015 at 3:01 pm

My kids bring my husband paper napkins when they have been on trips as his souvenir!


Isabelle July 29, 2015 at 3:39 pm

Whenever I go to a public place that has napkins, like take-out restaurants or movie theater, I grab a small stack and put it in the car’s gloves compartment. With 2 young kids it comes handy! I do the same for straws.


Bellen July 30, 2015 at 2:55 am

Our local Habitat Resale shop has prices that are only about 10-15% less than retail and they complain that business is off.
I shop at thrift stores that support local charities that I would like to support but don’t have money to do so.
Haven’t found any change on the ground, in return coin slots, etc in several years and I don’t think it’s because someone is getting there first. I think it’s because the economy is so bad in our area, despite what the local media is touting.


Carol M. July 30, 2015 at 10:08 am

I always think of this blog when I see loose change on the ground. I rarely pick it up, because I live in Los Angeles, and it seems really dirty, but sometimes I’m tempted. Especially when you give $20+ updates!


Katy July 30, 2015 at 10:33 am

The money on the ground is just as dirty as money you receive in a store. You just don’t know about it.


Ruby July 30, 2015 at 2:55 pm

I think coins in a nice hot parking lot might actually be cleaner because of the heat killing any bacteria. At least that’s what I tell myself. 😀

Years ago, my husband and son came home from Walmart with a huge pile of pennies they found dumped out in the parking lot. Somebody went to the trouble of saving them but then didn’t cash them in? Weird! There was more than $10 in pennies in that pile, which we happily rolled and put in the bank.


Jennifer Bell July 30, 2015 at 7:05 pm

I found a $100.00 bill on the floor at Taco Bell years ago. No one asked about it the whole time I was there, so I kept it.


Susan July 30, 2015 at 7:41 pm

I thought of you last month as I had my 3 yo daughter look under the coin star machine. She found 10 cents and had fun in the process!


Katy July 30, 2015 at 9:40 pm

Love it!


photo children July 31, 2015 at 3:41 am

Never been lucky to get found money on the floor. Bad of me.


dusty August 1, 2015 at 2:52 am

I’m in competition with my landlord to see who finds the most money on the ground, he’s winning. I can’t believe how much money is on the ground, never noticed it before, he told me how much he finds and I started doing the same. I also love the shot of the airline napkin used to wipe out your pan. I have a stack of Delta napkins in my glovebox from my last airline trip. Still trying to break the papertowel habit, fortunately a roll lasts me about 3 months. I did break the paper napkin habit though.


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