Friday, February 8, 2013

Frugal Accomplishments

Money-saving habits can make a huge difference over time.  I have learned so much from frugal people, and I've been blessed to be able to put much of that learning to work.  That is the work that allows me to stay home with our daughter...and it's well worth it!  Here are some frugal things we did this past week:

My daughter's teacher from virtual school told us about a web site - funbrain.com and she has been enjoying lots of educational games as reward when she finishes her regular school work and projects for the day.  She also shared wegivebooks.org with us, and we're enjoying it too!  If you have a child who is elementary school age, do check them out when you have some time. They may also have games and books for older and younger children - I'm not sure.  :)

I discovered a group that meets at our library a couple of times a month to do all sorts of needlework.  Happy Needles!  It's free, and really encouraging to see others making things with their hands.  I think it will also be a great place to share/learn new stitches, techniques, etc.  It's also grown-up time with other moms....and since it's at a time when my husband can watch our daughter, it's a virtually free way for me to get out and do something fun for me. 

We stuck with our eat-from-the-pantry menu and our $20/week budget for milk/produce/etc.  I spent $19 when all was said and done, and that even allowed me to do some stocking up.  Some of the fresh items we purchased this week will be used next week, too.  Supper leftovers became lunch the following day, and anything left on plates went in with fruit and vegetable peels  - to feed to our hens.  They love the 'treats', and it cuts down on feed consumption just a little bit.
I loaded a coupon on my Safeway card and got a free 2 liter of Sunkist 10.  As soon as I quit buying soda, they seem to be giving it away.

I accepted some school supplies from a friend.  Some of them will be for our daughter here at home, but there was a big bag of colored pencils that we took to the church for the Sunday School class.  Thanks, Becky!


I think I have finally completed the body pillow for my husband.  It was too dense...too long, but now I think it is just right!  As soon as I find time I'll make a pillow case for it, from fabric and thread that were given to me.

It's been fairly cold this week, so when I had soups, sauces, etc. that were still warm or hot, I put them outside on the deck (out of the reach of animals, and covered) until they were chilled, so that it wouldn't warm up the fridge and cause it to kick on extra.

We stopped at Goodwill on Sunday after church (it's just a couple miles from the church) and got Daughter a pair of maryjanes for church - the next size she will grow into...$2.  I found a glass chimney for a candlestick that I have - it's an unusual size, so whee! - for .59 and I got a small clay pot for .49.  We put some potting soil and wheat in it to grow Tallulah some 'cat grass'.  As of Thursday afternoon, it's beginning to sprout!


We did a good job of staying home more, and that meant there was plenty of gas in the tank for a homeschool group field trip. :)

We won a free large one topping pizza from Papa John's in the coin toss game.  Each person was allowed to enter - it was not one per family - so I guessed tails and Hubby guessed heads.  Mama didn't raise no fool.  We haven't claimed it yet - we'll work it into the menu some time.

I got coupons in the mail from King Sooper.  If you use the loyalty card, and you have your address updated in the system, they occasionally send these out.  One is for a free bag of Nestle' chocolate chips, and some of the others would be pretty good with items on sale.  We will see how many of them we actually use. :)

I used coffee grounds (after they had been used to make coffee, and then dried out completely) to sprinkle over the carpet to freshen it.  It works really, really well, but I think I'd be nervous with very light carpeting (our carpet is a fawn color with speckles).  Free 'carpet fresh'!

Thanks to Happy Needles (see above) I learned about a swim time at a local pool for homeschoolers.  It's only $2 per person for a 2 hour session.  That's rock-bottom around here, so we are going to work that into our school routine.  I'm also going to inquire about the swim lessons there and the special rate for homeschool families.

We were in Walmart one evening and they had children's 2-packs of gloves and also single children's winter hats for 50cents.  The church we attend does an annual Mitten Tree to collect hats, gloves, scarves, mittens, etc. for families in need.  For $5 we picked up 4 hats and 12 pairs of gloves.  I will save them back for next year's mitten tree, unless we have another cold snap and learn that they are needed sooner.

We did our usual winter things - dress warmer, supplement our heat with the wood stove, hang laundry on drying racks in the basement, etc. 

How did you decrease your spending this week?

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4 comments:

Cathy said...

All I was really able to do was take my lunch from home each day. 2 out of the 3 office days I had were so busy that I didn't even get to eat my entire lunch. So the chili and soup from days 2 and 3 were eaten for dinner instead.

I went to the discount stores looking for drapes. I also went to Goodwill to look for them. I have not found what I need. I have drapes now but they are very old and have holes in them. They are rather nasty but they are keeping the cold from blowing thru the windows. I hope to eventually find the type I need without spending a fortune.

I also did get my special treat I usually get in the cafeteria at work. I adore the blue raspberry slushy but I didn't get one this week. I'm trying to be good when it comes to money AND sugar intake.

I stopped at the grocery store last night and bought 4 bananas, some potatoes, and carrots. I have the rest of the stuff I need to have a wonderful dinner. I spend less than $10 and that was my entire shopping excursion for the week.

Laura said...

Awesome, Cathy! I think you are one of those people who already watches things very closely, so it gets to be more of a challenge to find something else to add! I think you're doing wonderfully. I recently went through my own drape thing...we got a new comforter for our bed, which didn't go with our drapes in there. I found some cream colored ones at Goodwill for $7...those went in the living room. The white ones from the living room went to our bedroom, and our blue ones went to Daughter's bedroom, where she only had a valance before. I still want something to 'swag' along the top in our bedroom, but I haven't found it yet. :)

Cathy said...

When I was in Goodwill they had a ton of swag items. So make sure you check back there often.

My drapes and curtains don't really match anything. In fact, I will admit that I am most likely the only female in the world that doesn't know how to match! I always swore if I had children I would buy Geranimals clothings so that I knew they would match. Due to my inability to match, I have a closet full of black pants and blue denim jeans so that I know any top will match! LOL

I have missed you my friend! Love that you are blogging again. You have been on my mind so much in the last year.

I sold my house last year and am now living on the side of a mountain in West Virginia! Although I still commute to work 3 days a week, I am working remotely 2 days a week now. That is making my life much more frugal and fun!

~Cindy~ said...

I was sick last week so stayed home, my husband cooked most of the week, which basically meant going to the store and buying stuff..so not frugal but since I stayed out of the thrift stores all week and stayed home that saved bunches, and I went into the weekend with money left.

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