There are so many ways to save! Here are a few I accomplished this week:
> Planned our weekly suppers based on items in our freezer and pantry to reduce spending at the supermarket. Actually, we've decided to 'eat down' our freezer and pantry, and 'use down' our toiletries and household consumables, so we've reduced our montly grocery/household/toiletry to $80 per month. We are also going to put another $80 per month aside for bulk purchasing in the future, when the pantry is low.
> Posted a 'wanted' on freecycle for yarn and received a trash bag full of yarn that will be used for a prayer shawl ministry (more on that soon!)
> Combined all the errands in town for the day I picked up the freecycle yarn to save gasoline.
> Transferred a prescription to King Soopers and received a $25 Rx reward, which spends in the supermarket just like cash. There were some canned pears on markdown for .79, so we purchased those with part of the reward, and we'll use the rest of it later this month for free groceries. In addition, using local pharmacies instead of mail order will actually cut our copay in half.
> Opened a checking account with a new bank. After I spend $75 with their debit card, they will credit my account with $75, so it's like getting $75 free. It is structured in such a way that there are no fees for the account. This money will go into our 'landscape fund' for this coming summer.
> Parted out a partially thawed turkey that we bought at Thanksgiving, then wrapped and froze the smaller portions for future meals. I put the turkey frame in the crock pot overnight with some dry rub (bbq) and liquid smoke. Now I have 5 cups of 'barbecue meat' that we can use for pulled meat sandwiches, quesedillas, etc., along with 3 cups of very rich stock. I even saved some of the rendered fat, as it is very good for flavoring.
> Got three 'cutie' clementine oranges free - they were samples at the supermarket and we each had one.
> Used coupons to get free sodas at Safeway. They are the new 'ten' flavors, and it's an offer to get people to try them for free.
> Was given a free sample of applesauce in a squeezy packet. I stashed it for an errand day as a treat for our daughter.
> Used a combination of Staples Rewards and a $5 off $25 coupon to get 4 reams of printer paper and a label maker for $1.01 out of pocket. I will get back $23.96 in a rebate check.
> Purchased curtains for our living room at Goodwill for $8. I couldn't even get fabric to make my own for that kind of money. I got two pair of athletic shoes for my daughter (the next two sizes she's growing into) for $2.50 a pair as well.
> Dropped off used batteries at the hazardous materials recycling center (free of charge). They maintain a shelf of items that have been brought in, and we are permitted to take anything we like, also free of charge. I picked up plant food for my houseplants, enzyme drain cleaner, some spray and wash for the laundry, half a gallon of vinegar I can use for cleaning, boric acid, rooting hormone and rose food.
> We read books and watched DVD's from the public library, free of charge.
> Used 'points' to get three free pizzas at Papa John's. They were running a special that make the points worth far more than usual. I had also won a pizza from them, so I picked up all four, free. We had pizza for supper one night and froze the rest in single portions for future meals.
> Fed kitchen scraps, Christmas tree branches and extra pumpkins that we grew to our chickens. This gives them more variety in their diet and saves on feed costs.
> Used our wood stove to supplement heating our home. We get the wood for free, so it's free heat.
> Used the wooden drying racks to dry our clothing instead of drying it in the dryer.
What have you done this week to save?