Wednesday’s Frugal List 02/21/2018

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  1. I hand dried a load of dishes from the dishwasher, instead of using the heated dry function to save on electricity.
  2. The last audio book I downloaded for free from the library was dud-ish, so I started listening to a free Audible series called West Cork.
  3. I picked up a lilac scented candle from my Buy Nothing Group. Lilacs are my favorite flower, so I was thrilled to receive this candle.
  4. I picked up a bag of model train parts from another member of my Buy Nothing Group. My father-in-law is into model trains, so I’ll send these to him.
  5. My kids have been eating too much junky breakfast cereal and I needed to get some healthier cereal to add to the mix. I went to Fred Meyer and got a box of plain Cheerios for free using a coupon they sent me in the mail. I also redeemed my last Free Friday Download coupon and got a free candy bar. They had 12 oz bags of frozen vegetables on sale for 88 cents each. I had two coupons for 40 cents off two bags of frozen veggies, which made each of the four bags I bough 68 cents each. Although I’m generally not in the habit of buying all organic or natural foods, I try to scan the natural foods aisles when I’m shopping, because I’ve often found some great clearance deals in this section. This shopping trip did not disappoint, I found some frozen burritos on sale for 39 cents each, when purchased in quantities of 5. I bought 10 to keep in the freezer for when we don’t have any leftovers for my husband to bring to work for lunch or we need a quick and easy dinner. And, of course, I took advantage of the free babysitting they offer in store, to make my shopping easier.
  6. I didn’t make a meal plan for this week, so dinner time snuck up on me and I didn’t have a plan. I heated up a package of Trader Joe’s frozen cheese enchiladas and one of those 39 cent burritos for our dinner. My kids had some pancakes that I had made and stashed in the freezer for a time like this. We added fresh strawberries to the meal to round it out.
  7. It has continued to be cold here, which means we do need to use the heater. We have been conscientious about it and use it sparingly and as needed.

Tuesday’s Frugal List 02/20/2018

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Before and After of my T-Shirt Repair
  1. I took a 3-minute shower.
  2. I hung two loads of laundry up to air dry instead of using the expensive electric clothes dryer.
  3. I made a huge batch of red beans in my electric pressure cooker. I put half of these in the freezer to use later. The other half got turned into red beans and rice for dinner.
  4. I made a batch of waffles from scratch for my kids. They were begging me for frozen waffles when we were at the grocery store on Monday. I told them that we have a waffle maker and all the ingredients to make waffles, so I’d make them some.
  5. My car was becoming embarrassingly filthy thanks to a couple little kids who trashed the back seat. After clearing out the toys and trash, I brought my Dustbuster handheld vacuum cleaner out to the car and started vacuuming up the mess. Normally I would have gone to the car wash and used the coin-operated vacuum cleaner they have, but in the spirit of saving money, I decided my little Dustbuster would do the trick without spending any extra money.
  6. I hand dried a load of dishes from the dishwasher instead of using the heated dry function.
  7. I have a t-shirt with a printed image that had started cracking. The cracking was so bad that I was embarrassed to wear the shirt out of the house, so I decided to attempt a repair. I placed the shirt on the ironing board and then covered the image with parchment paper and ironed over it with a very hot iron. The results weren’t perfect, but it definitely looks better than it did before.
  8. I picked up an unopened container of hot cocoa mix from my local Buy Nothing Group. It’s my personal favorite brand, so I was especially thrilled to receive it. And it’s been so cold around here today that it was put to use immediately.
  9. I stopped at a Little Free Library Box and picked up two books for my children. One of them was the classic book, The Ox-Cart Man. It was such a delight to that book to my kids at bedtime.
  10. I got a free month of Amazon Prime thanks to Paribus. Paribus is a free service that monitors your Amazon orders and deliveries in your email. Paribus then contacts Amazon on your behalf if a delivery is late requesting a Prime extension since Amazon’s policy is to extend Prime memberships by one month if their deliveries are late. I honestly don’t even know which delivery was late (perhaps cat food, if I had to take a gander) so I would have missed out on this freebie without Paribus.
  11. I made a batch of washing soda in my toaster oven using Penniless Parenting’s method. I use this washing soda in my dishwasher in place of dishwasher detergent.
  12. It has been especially cold here today, so we did use the central heat. But, we did use it sparingly and conscientiously.

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Monday’s Frugal List 02/19/2018

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  1. I was not particularly dirty or smelly, so I didn’t take a shower today.
  2. I emptied a bunch of parmesan cheese and red pepper flake packets that were hanging out in a drawer into big containers so they will get used.
  3. I packed a coffee for me and a snack for the kids before we left the house.
  4. I picked up a new low flow shower head from my Buy Nothing Group.
  5. I went to WinCo to do my grocery shopping and spent $75.37 on the following:
    • 1 loaf of Hawaiian Bread ($1.78)
    • 1 bag of Corn Tortilla Chips ($1.28)
    • 1 bag of Mini Marshmallows ($1.34)
    • 0.09 lb Bulk Tea ($2.06)
    • 0.02 lb Bulk Dried Dill ($0.16)
    • 2 Little Boxes Valentine Chocolates (a treat for my kids, $1.46)
    • 1 tube of Lipstick ($0.82)
    • 1 box of Wellie Wishers Valentines ($1.71)
    • 1 package Cucumber Seeds $2.28
    • 1 package Scallion Seeds $1.68)
    • 1 lb Baking Soda ($0.67)
    • 1 lb of Strawberries ($1.98)
    • 2 lbs Kiwi Fruit ($3.98)
    • 5 lbs Carrots($2.28)
    • 2 bunches of Scallions ($0.96)
    • 1 lb Frozen Corn ($1.11)
    • 5 lbs Onions ($1.78)
    • 3.13 lb Asparagus ($3.07)
    • 1.40 lb Zucchini ($1.37)
    • 1.56 lbs Trail Mix ($3.98, for my husband’s snack at work)
    • 1 gallon of Milk ($1.88)
    • 2 lbs Strawberry Yogurt ($1.58)
    • 1.67 lb ColbyJack Cheese ($4.48)
    • 1 dozen Eggs ($0.98)
    • 0.75 lb Dried Black Beans ($0.63)
    • 1 lb Breakfast Sausage ($3.90)
    • 2.85 lbs Pork Chops ($6.78)
    • 2.77 lbs Ground Beef ($9.09)
    • 2.5 lbs Ground Pork ($5.78)
    • 0.84 lb Andouille Sausage ($2.98)
    • 1.13 lbs Chorizo($1.96)
    • I brought my own bags and got a $0.42 credit.
  6. It was lunch time after we finished shopping and I was super tempted to get lunch at the burger place next door. Instead, I passed out snacks to my kids and we drove home.
  7. When I was putting away groceries, I noticed some berries that were looking a little sad. I sorted through the berries and made a quick mixed berry jam.
  8. I downloaded an audiobook from library. The book turned out to be a dud, but since I didn’t pay anything for it, nothing was lost. I downloaded another audiobook to replace the dud before I went to sleep, but it remains to be seen whether or not it’s any good.
  9. I made some gift tags out of a beautifully printed paper shopping bag.
  10. I returned a bunch of books and DVDs to the library that were accumulating late fees because they couldn’t be renewed.
  11. The weather has been cold here, so we haven’t been able to keep the heat turned off completely. However, we’ve been using the heater sparingly and conscientiously, only turning it on when it gets below 60 degrees Fahrenheit indoors and using the space heater when appropriate.
  12. We have an upcoming vacation and I wanted to get the kids some new coloring books for the airplane, so I went to The Dollar Tree to buy some. They have nice coloring books for only $1 each. I saw a 25-piece Peppa Pig puzzle that my daughter will enjoy putting together, so I got that for the airplane too. I also buy parchment paper there, it’s 25 square feet for $1, which is a GREAT deal.

 

Sunday’s Frugal List 02/18/2018

I’m still recovering from being sick, so it hasn’t been the most frugal day again since I spent a lot of time resting.

  1. I took a 3 minute shower
  2. I hung a load of laundry up to air dry, instead of using our clothes dryer.
  3. I’m in the habit of checking electric usage regularly. I’m thrilled that our electric provider gives us our daily usage data on the website. Yesterday we hit another 3-month usage low, clocking in at 9 kWh!! Weeeeeeee! Curiously, I did not do any laundry and I didn’t do any cooking, which might explain the low amount of electricity used. I’m going to experiment with using our electric pressure cooker to cook more and see if that helps keep usage low.
  4. My daughters redeemed a gift certificate to a local candy store that they were given.
  5. We kept the central heating turned off all day, except for 1 hour in the morning when the indoor temperature dipped down to 59 degrees Fahrenheit. We didn’t use the space heater at all.

Saturday’s Frugal List 02/17/2018

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Saturday wasn’t the most frugal day since I got really sick halfway though the day and spent the afternoon and evening laid up on the sofa.

1. I ate leftovers for breakfast.
2. I skipped my shower since I wasn’t smelly or dirty.
3. I hand dried a load of dishes from the dishwasher instead of using the heated dry function to save money on electricity.
4. I packed a coffee in my favorite travel cup so I wouldn’t be tempted by the siren call of Starbucks.
5. We kept the central heat turned off all day and did not use the space heater.
6. I heated up some frozen macaroni and cheese for dinner. It wasn’t a balanced meal, but it filled my family’s bellies without resorting to take out.

Friday’s Frugal List 02/17/2018

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Our Latest Electric Bill
  1. I downloaded the Free Friday Download coupon to my Kroger account.
  2. I took a 3-minute shower
  3. 1 hand dried a load of dishes from the dishwasher instead of using the heated dry function.
  4. I hung a load of laundry up to air dry.
  5. I ate leftovers for lunch and they were delicious!
  6. We kept the central heat turned off all day, except for one hour first thing in the morning. We didn’t use the space heater at all.
  7. I our electric bill finally posted online. I was super eager to see this bill because it’s the first full month bill since we’ve started making major efforts to conserve electricity. Our efforts have literally paid off, the bill was $58 less than last month. It was also the second lowest bill of the past year. The lowest bill was from the month of June, when we didn’t pay any heating or cooling costs and we were our of town for a week. And, that lowest bill was only 78 cents less than this bill.
  8. I had been thinking of making my own laundry soap after I run out of the laundry detergent I have on hand.  However, I came upon a deal on laundry detergent at Amazon, $15.98 for 280 loads worth of detergent. At 5.7 cents a load for this detergent, I decided it’s not worth it to make my own laundry soap.
  9. I downloaded another free digital audiobook from my library, since I finished listening to my last one (Tuck Everlasting, it was only a few hours long). I’m really enjoying this one, Unorthodox by Deborah Feldman.

Thursday’s Frugal List 02/15/2018

  1. I skipped taking a shower this morning, since I wasn’t particularly dirty or smelly.
  2. I hung a load of laundry up to air dry.
  3. I hand dried a load of dishes from the dishwasher.
  4. I finished sorting through my children’s toys. They were so happy to have their toys arranged nicely that they spent an hour or so playing nicely together in their room.
  5. I had to return something to Fred Meyer. While I was there I made sure to use the free childcare they offer their customers and I picked up some Valentines for my kids on clearance for next year.
  6. I did not buy a Starbucks coffee at the grocery store, even though I really, really, really wanted one. Did I mention that I wanted a coffee from Starbucks? 🙂
  7. We kept the central heat turned off all day, except for one hour first thing in the morning. We didn’t use the space heater at all.
  8. I made enchiladas and rice with beans for dinner. The enchilada sauce has been in my pantry forever and needs to get used up pronto. The rice and beans were leftover from earlier this week. The cheese was purchased at a good price from The Grocery Outlet.