Non-Consumer Photo Essay

by Katy on November 16, 2023 · 33 comments

It’s time for another Non-Consumer Photo Essay, which is especially exciting as my daughter needed her hairbrush repaired and I’m always happy to save something from the landfill.

Not front page news, but still worth a mention on a non-consumer blog!

There — pretty much as good as new! I already owned the glue, so this was a zero out of pocket repair.

I brought a receipt back to Safeway, as my husband shopped without making sure that our “club” card swiped properly. This meant that all the digital coupons I’d deliberately loaded onto our account didn’t activate. You might question the worthiness of this extra errand, but I was able to get $15.20 refunded back onto our credit card.

Slight pain in the tuchus, but worth it!

I stopped by Goodwill afterwards and browsed through the Christmas sweaters, finding these two specimens. I didn’t buy either of them, but they still gave me a giggle.

Very goofy, but representation matters — even if it’s silly representation.

Of course I scoped out the Christmas aisle for the “V’ and “Y” I need to complete my “Oy Vey” stocking holders I’ve been thrifting for.

Getting there . . .

Oy pey!

Katy Wolk-Stanley

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

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{ 33 comments… read them below or add one }

Marie November 16, 2023 at 4:10 pm

Well worth going back if it was the Tillamook butter! 6.99


Katy November 16, 2023 at 4:13 pm

The potatoes, Tillamook butter and Tillamook ice cream.


Marie November 16, 2023 at 4:51 pm

Great butter price


Katy November 16, 2023 at 6:46 pm

Sadly it was “limit 2.”


Selena November 16, 2023 at 7:46 pm

Amy D. was famous for X dollars for Y time = Z dollars per hour. Even if it took 1/4 hour, $60.80 per hour “earned”.
I’ve had blonde moments re: forgot to scan my coupons at the self-check. Off to customer service X for Y = a stellar Z.
My PSA – put your frozen turkey in the frig no later than Saturday morning. Our not that old freezer and frig = allow a bit extra thawing time.

Mary Ann November 16, 2023 at 4:44 pm

My low spend adventures:

1. I started eating my store of popcorn. I have a microwave bowl I bought years ago. A third of a cup of kernals, a little of my almond oil I am trying to use up before it goes bad, and voila. 200 calories, fiber, tasty and right now free. I spray Pam olive oil on it to make the salt stick. Since I am still in my 100 days of non-UPF food, it checks lots of boxes.

2. I froze a gallon of cheap milk. I am going to try my hand at yoghurt when I return from some holiday travels.

3. I researched the multi-cooker to buy for the ranch office. We will be spending more time there over the next two years while we renovate the Century Home. I have a Consumer Reports membership I got for pennies. I also signed up for a free trial at American Test Kitchens. I made a list of the possibilities, marked the prices as of today at various sites and will wait to see which goes on sale during next week.

4. I also subscribed to Anderson House Soups. Last Black Friday, I got a great 40% off deal. These soups are a great compromise for me. I know I could save a bit because beans are so cheap BUT….. I never have to buy spices for them, they make multiple meals for us, and they are super quick. I buy the ones that work in an instapot. I am still using my fantastic 28 oz cans of organic marzano tomatoes, and get my ground beef/turkey/chicken on sale. I get a freezable, non-UPF quart of fresh soup for around $2.00.

5. I am out of bread ( see popcorn snack) and I am holding off buying any while I work through the pounds of brown rice I have free from the Hubby’s rice co-op. I am also not buying fruit until we work through the box of persimmons. I am also not buying coffee until I finish the less than great instant coffee I picked up cheaply. So, a lot of not buying.


Katy November 16, 2023 at 6:48 pm

RE; Your #5 — that’s an impressive amount of self control.


Selena November 16, 2023 at 7:48 pm

San Marzano tomatoes are the best. Had to compromise this year but they will be back in the 2024 garden.


Iris November 17, 2023 at 2:50 pm

I found if I melt the butter and add the salt to the butter and mix good, it will stay on the popcorn instead of doing each separately. Hope that makes sense. Salt is then on popcorn and not bottom of bowl.


Kathy November 16, 2023 at 5:01 pm

1. Sold two items which netted $22. Reused bubble mailers
2. Did a deep dig and found enough items to assemble an Operation Christmas Child box.
3. Yes we had popcorn for a snack vs dinner
4. Rearranged home decor
5. Inventoried holiday supplies


Christine November 16, 2023 at 8:52 pm

I love popcorn for dinner! Such a treat. I can get away with it when DH decides he only wants a sandwich for dinner.


Heidi Louise November 17, 2023 at 7:58 am

Many years ago, I bought a friend a Popcorn Cookbook, as that was her standard supper/dinner meal. Don’t remember much, except to make popcorn flour, I think spinning it in a blender (no food processors at that ancient time) to grind it up.


Christine November 16, 2023 at 5:02 pm

Great job on the hairbrush. Like you mentioned: repairing it keeps it out of the landfill.
$15 is definitely worth going back for at the store.
Oh, the llama sweater! Too sweet and funny!


Katy November 16, 2023 at 6:45 pm

I agree — very cute!


A. Marie November 17, 2023 at 1:41 am

I’m not into silly holiday sweaters as a rule, but I’d have bought the llama sweater in a heartbeat. I llove llamas.


Jill A November 17, 2023 at 6:28 am

I agree. The llama sweater is so cute.


Val November 16, 2023 at 5:28 pm

Oy Pey! I love it! Loved the llamakah sweater too.


Kara November 16, 2023 at 9:12 pm

DIY/repair edition
My husband glued a piece back on the cycling glasses he received for free on Buy Nothing.
I am working on a rag quilt for my grandson. 90% of the fabric was free, the batting was free (Buy Nothing, my mom).
I’m knitting a wrap for my mother-in-law, the yarn was free from Buy Nothing.
Sewed a fabric laundry bag for my son-in-law, from gifted fabric from my mother. It’s quite drab fabric, but a laundry bag is more for function than form!
I’ve gathered art/craft supplies for Thanksgiving for mostly free, I did purchase new paint and construction paper.


Marybeth from NY November 17, 2023 at 5:45 am

Great job on the brush. I have been there done that.
1. Did 3 cans of leaves first thing in the morning yesterday. The truck comes around 11.
2. My kids helped me finish clean out my garden/put everything away. I still have beets, carrots and swiss chard going. I picked some figs. I don’t know if any more will ripen.
3. I made a pot of soup with leftover rotisserie chicken.
4. I made a loaf of challah in the bread machine.
5. I made jello and hard boiled eggs. Hubby had root canal done last night so I wanted easy soft foods for him. He is doing good so far.


Heidi Louise November 17, 2023 at 8:07 am

Katy, you also saved some glue from being wasted, as I believe landfills have large numbers of tubes of glue that dried up before it could be used. It takes a skilled hand– my father was one– to get the caps back on and keep the glue fresh.


Q November 17, 2023 at 9:08 am

1. Consolidated various small savings and retirement accounts: will be easier to keep track of as I get older, and I will save on fees, etc, and make quite a bit more interest. It is a significant savings and earnings when combined together. I have been studying finances and reading many documents, etc, to be an educated retiree. Most firms (Equitable, Morgan Stanley, etc) charge a 1.7% fee to manage your 403b (the fee looks lower, but is .85% officially and another .85% in hidden fees: it took me awhile to uncover this), and Vanguard charges .08% for your IRA, which is 1/20th as much. I looked up all the rules on rollovers, etc, and went over it with my brother, who is very financially literate. I will be saving so much money over the next 20 years. 20×1.7=34%, but with compounding that is closer to 40%. That means that 40% of my retirement would be eroded if I had not moved the funds around. It took me a bit of time to figure all of this out, but I am very glad I did. I really did my research, and it is going to pay off.
2. A friend who I have been driving to PT very sweetly gave me a $25 gift certificate to Wild by Nature. She gave everyone else fancy chocolates, but knows I don’t eat sweets. I will buy some kind of healthy treat for the holidays and entertaining.
3. I accepted some kale, which went bad before I could use it, and also some expired cans of pumpkin from my friend who is going to Arizona. I will use it for baking, as it is not very expired, just a couple of months. I also used my Sawzall (!) to slice up the big pumpkin we got on sale at Lidl’s for Halloween. The pumpkin was too big to cut up for the microwave or to fit in anything, and too hard to cut, so I sliced it in quarters with the Sawzall and then microwaved them a little bit, then cut into smallish pieces with a knife. The large pumpkins are not always as flavorful, so I tossed the pieces with oil in different batches with different spices I had from the library Spice Club I won a membership to: Garam Marsala, Curry, Garlic, etc, and one batch I used cinnamon sugar, as that is not a spice I normally use a lot of. I will also roast the seeds using Zaatar, etc, as I am using up the little spice packets.
4. I volunteered to do school presentations for a bay restoration project, and found out I will receive a $50 honorarium each time.
5. My water authority is offering a free water conservation audit and a $250 rebate on water saving devices, so I am making an appointment this afternoon for a checkup.
Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving to everyone!


Christine November 17, 2023 at 3:13 pm

Zaatar is the best! My library has a Spice of the Month too with one month the spice being Zaatar. I had never heard of it but discovered I love it in the salad recipe handed out with it. Happy Thanksgiving to you too!


Cathy November 17, 2023 at 9:13 am

Really good glue is an investment. The dividends it pays is infinite! And, as someone else mentioned, getting the lid back on is a skill 🙂

I’m going to Safeway tomorrow to get my Thanksgiving loss leader items. Potatoes, butter…oh my!


lulutoo November 17, 2023 at 9:17 am

I was also at Safeway yesterday and after checkout I realized that two of my digital coupons hadn’t gone through. So I went over to the customer service desk and he looked at my receipt and refunded me the five dollars and change I was owed. Butter is $2.99 here and it was Dreyer’s ice cream that was on sale at this Safeway–Tillamook was full price.


Casey November 17, 2023 at 1:29 pm

I’ve had so many problems with Safeway and their card, I no longer use it. I just enter our phone number, which works better. However, I have to watch that receipt like a hawk!


Kara November 17, 2023 at 6:43 pm

I sold an item on ebay today. I wrapped it in the brown paper that came on the embroidery that I had framed. It made me very happy to get one more use out of the brown paper.


Blue Gate Farmgirl November 18, 2023 at 8:40 am

Katy, those sweaters would make awesome throw pillows! Maybe you’ll find them “by the pound” in January!
I was given 3 gallons of whole milk, straight up moo juice. So what’s a girl to do? Make butter, buttermilk and save a pint of heavy cream.
We have a house full of out of stater framily, so I’ve been making snacks, stick to your ribs food and a few treats. I only spent $11 on ingredients.
One friend brought his extra olive oil bottles (he grows olives and produces small batch oil). Every year he bottles the oil in special pressed glass bottles and each year is a different style. He had 2 dozen too many and brought me his extras to use for my flavored vinegars that I make for gifts. Such a nice surprise.
My sweet cousin fixed my mudroom toilet, only he brought his son fresh from Air Force training, so the son did the repair and I paid him double, because he’s a cutie and I love him. He asked me for more jobs while he’s at home for the next month. Get out my list!!!


Selena November 18, 2023 at 8:32 pm

I have been cleaning the house. Partly for T-Day – dusting – ugh, I hate it and have resolved to ask myself if a potential item for house requires dusting. I’ve even done the tops of cabinets which are mostly out of sight, out of mind.
I’ve thought about hiring a one time deep clean the house and have resisted I have the financial means to pay somebody else).
Have been de-cluttering – partly due to being executor of my parents estate, partly due to what is already in my house. Katie, I may be emailing you re: eEbay-able/resale items. When items collect more dust/take up space than are enjoyed, time to think of their final “frontier”. I’ll ask the kiddos re: their interest (aka if they think they might want it, I will keep it). Some items at my house have been in the family five generations.


Katy November 19, 2023 at 12:05 pm

I no longer bring something home unless I know where it goes and it doesn’t just add to the clutter.


Katy November 16, 2023 at 8:38 pm

I have a reminder set in my calendar to put the turkey in the fridge this Saturday!


Selena November 17, 2023 at 8:36 pm

I have notes (Saturday is not a work day so reminders on the work calendar doesn’t do it). PLUS to take out sticks of butter and bacon (not for the T-Day meal). Spot reserved in frig for the bird and a “scrappy” dish towel on which the bird shall sit.


Blue Gate Farmgirl November 18, 2023 at 8:41 am

Brilliant! Thanks for the reminder!


Selena November 18, 2023 at 8:20 pm

Turkey as well as the other two items are in the frig. Three items need to be out-of-freezer-into-frig on Tuesday (one for T-day dish, other two to feed out of town family on T-Day Eve).


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