Poppy png
Header Typography

April Flowers The Prudent Homemaker Blog

Follow Me on Instagram

The Prudent Homemaker Blog

  • Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Categories
    Categories Displays a list of categories from this blog.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that have been used in the blog.
Posted by on
  • Font size: Larger Smaller

Frugal Accomplishments for the Beginning of May

May Day Roses The Prudent Homemaker

For those who missed the announcement on Instagram, I had a baby boy on Friday, April 27th. I'll be sharing photos and details in an upcoming post. We're still deciding on a name for this baby.

We enjoyed some rain on May first and second, which is rather unusual here--especially in May! I turned off the drip irrigation systems for three days and put out buckets to collect rainwater on the two days we received a little rain.

The rain brought cooler weather and we were able to turn off the air conditioning for four days.

My husband gave two sons a haircut.

I said yes to some formula samples that someone I know offered for free on Facebook. We used them to feed the baby until I had milk, which took 5 days.

My largest frugal accomplishment was making sure to pump to help me to have enough breastmilk for my baby. I've written about this before, but I have to pump in order to have any milk for my babies. I've tried all the supplements, but they made no difference in my supply. I hired a lactation consultant with my third baby. Pumping and drinking lots (and lots) of water are what I need to do to make sure I can feed my babies. I don't have letdown (I can count the number of times I've had letdown with 9 children on two hands) and the day my milk came in, I was able to pump only 3/4 of an ounce. Still, I persevered, and now my body is producing enough milk for my baby. Pumping made it so that I was able to nurse my last baby for 16 months (with my first baby, I had no milk by 9 months, and with my second, I ran out of milk at 5 months; since hiring the consultant, who instructed me to pump and for how long, I have been able to nurse each of my subsequent babies over a year).

I wore a support wrap for after birth that I had purchased at a garage sale for $1 last October. I have seen these for sale for $35. This gave me back support and will hopefully help with healing my diastasis.

The baby surprised me by being a boy! Since we had only planned on having 8 children, I had given away most of my baby things. I had been given some hand-me-down girl clothes, but needed something for a son. I used the 15% off registry coupon from Target to purchase a 4-pack of onesies for him. I also went to a community garage sale on Saturday morning, where I found a few things for him for $0.25 cents each.

At the garage sales, I also found a Christmas wreath and some more ornament hooks ($3), a couple of fancy hair combs that I'll use as a gift for a daughter ($0.50 each), and a 5-strand pearl necklace for $1, which I purchased with a laugh after the old woman who was selling it said to me as I picked it up, "You too can look like Barbara Bush."

While at Target, I used two $1 off coupons towards my purchase of shampoo and also used Target cartwheel for an additional 5% off. I brought my own bags to save $0.05 off per bag.

I picked up 5 containers of sour cream on sale for $0.89 each. These were on my list for the month, but I purchased them elsewhere than I had planned since these were a better price. They also had more shampoo on sale in the kinds that my children like, so I picked up a few bottles of shampoo there also.

I went to the local nursery to purchase two herb plants for my garden. One of the regular employees let me know they had one lilac left; someone has returned a plant, and all but one branch had died. They had been watering it and keeping it alive, and it was recovering. I was offered the lilac for $2. Originally the bushes were $40 each (when they were large and healthy). I bought the lilac and will find a place for it.

My husband picked up a free, new-to-us small fridge that we are using to replace our second fridge. The fridge that we have been using (also given to us) works really well, but it is almost as old as I am. This newer refrigerator was made in 2007, so it should be much more energy efficient. We've been looking for someone in need of a second fridge who would like it for free, but if we don't find someone, I will list the fridge for sale online (if any local readers are interested, send me an email, and the first person to contact me is welcome to it).

I watched a couple of hours of a free class online.

My eldest tried a reader's suggestion from last week to use witch hazel as an anti-static spray. She said it worked great! We will use witch hazel from now on.

My son picked a few mulberries (with permission) from a neighbor's tree. We ate them over homemade pancakes.

I cut flowers from the garden to enjoy inside. We also harvested lemons, lettuce, parsley, and spinach from the garden.


What did you do to save money last week?


Last modified on


  • I May 07, 2018

    Over the weekend we rented a furnished 2 br apt in Vancouver for Sept 1 for DD as she is on a very long WL for residence where she stayed last year. We were able to find a furnished apt including alll utilities, close to UBC with a nice landlady and we only had to commit for the school year. It was within our budget and just nice to know there will not be a mad scramble at the end of summer, competing with thousands of other students in a tight, expensive market. She will share with one roommate. Unbelievably, the house containing the apt is worth 2.9 million dollars!!! Good grief, I really don't know how people afford to buy a house there. Location, location, location I guess.

  • Athanasia May 09, 2018

    I, what is a "WL"?

  • Carol May 09, 2018

    I think it means "wait list".

  • I May 09, 2018

    Yes it does mean waitlist.

  • Athanasia May 10, 2018

    Thanks. Now someone used the abbreviation "DG" in a post...anyone know what that is? (I forgot which post or I would specifically ask that person)

  • Monica May 07, 2018

    Hi Brandy, so happy for your family and can’t wait till you post the baby update post! I’m so glad you persevere with the nursing although I’ve been reading several years now and can see that that would be your personality and conviction!

  • Diedra May 07, 2018

    Congratulations on your baby! I also had a baby the same week. His name is Alexander. When I got home I saved money by pulling things out of the freezer for hubby to bake/roast that I made in advance. We are struggling to curb our ordering out and I knew the postpartum time was going to be tempting. It's much healthier to eat my own cooking as I cook leaner than local restaurants, plus gestational hypertension is easier to control by reducing sodium. Takeout is almost always high in sodium.

    Blessings on your family.

  • My husband was so tempted to order pizza one night, but I helped him with ideas to cook for dinner that night of things we had. He was finding it hard to keep up with the cooking, so I was very glad when some people brought by meals three days after the baby was born.

  • Cindy S. May 07, 2018

    Congratulations Diedra on your new little baby boy!

  • Marybeth May 07, 2018

    Congratulations on your baby. Love the name Alexander.

  • Athanasia May 09, 2018

    Dierdra, yes, congratulations on the new baby! I, too, like the name Alexander.

  • Maxine May 07, 2018

    This was an interesting week. I reported a few weeks ago that I had divided and transplanted plants at my old house and expected to go back this week to dig them up. I tried to get this in writing when we sold the house, but things got crazy and it didn't happen. The new owners have been very difficult, apparently because the furnace died not long after they moved in (it passed their home inspection and we had never had any trouble with it in 20 years). They have now said, through their realtor, that I can't have my plants. Some of these have sentimental value. I have decided to have nothing further to do with these people. If I just showed up with a shovel, they are the type that would call the police.

    My friends are coming to my rescue. Everybody seems to have a little bit of something in their garden to share for our new house (it will be finished around the 4th of July). And my best friend, who lives in Portland (I am in northern Idaho) invited me to come the first week of June to sew with her and dig plants. She has a beautiful garden and some of the plants I lost came from her 20 years ago! My DS did not get what I was so upset about. But my DDIL did, and she told me they would be giving me plants for Mother's Day. When we go to Portland, we will be staying with DH's cousin.

    On the frugal side, I've been taking care of my perennial seedlings (columbines, lupines and balloon flowers) and the packaged bareroot hostas I got at Costco for about $1.29 per plant.

    I paid my bills online and saved $2 in postage. We got a propane delivery and the price was .20 less per gallon than the last time. This saved us nearly $50 on heating and cooking fuel.
    We had 4 no-drive, no-spend days...but on one of the drive days, we bought a new Honda Pilot (the basic model), which was anything but frugal. (Our minivan was parked all winter because it was no good in snow). I'm sure this will be our last car, since we are in our early 70s, and don't plan to replace the pickup when the wheels fall off! (That is normally how long we drive a vehicle). We wanted to get Weather Tech mats and a trailer hitch. I found a $500 Groupon for $249!

  • Maxine, I'm sorry you didn't get to get your plants. I think you are going to end up with some wonderful new plants, though! I often wish I had dug things from my old house; the owners covered everything in rocks and hundreds of bulbs were just wasted. I mostly wish I had dug the David Austin roses, which I imagine are dead now (they tore out all of the front landscaping--everything--grass, trees, bushes, etc.) and I don't think the back fared much better.

    I have a beautfiul garden now, so I know things will work out for you, too!

  • mmckms May 08, 2018

    I have hauled plants around 4 moves, my M & MIL have been gone for over 10 yrs. Alot plants I got from their yards and every year when they bloom or come up it is a gentle reminder of two sweet ladies whom I loved dearly. Over the years I have lost a few and reached out to her friends (whom she shared with) who gladly shared again. Her best friend told me not long ago that my mother gave her a book called Passalong Plants that gave a listing of the best most hardy plants to move. That was way before the internet, but she and I both share beautiful memories of M and her BFF. It is always a beautiful thing when a flower can represent so much. Keep moving your plants and I know that this Mother's Day the new plants will have new memories.

  • Nina May 07, 2018

    Congratulations on your new baby! Best wishes for continued good health for you and your new baby boy.

  • I'm amazed at how much you get done every week and now with a new baby to boot? Incredible!

    I continue to stay frugal by shopping the sales and using coupons whenever possible. This week, I found free cold medicine, free toothpaste, free avocados, free Vivarin, bread for $0.49 a loaf, free Loreal lipstick and more. On Saturday, we went to a free pet party at PetSmart and received a bunch of samples. All of my deals with price breakdown and pics here: http://thejewishlady.com/super-savings-saturday-5-5-18/

  • Holley May 07, 2018

    I'm so happy for you! The suspense is killing me regarding his name! I've been checking here and Instagram several times a day in anticipation! Wishing you all the health and happiness in the world!

  • We haven't agreed on a name yet so I don't have one to share yet!

  • Marcia R. May 08, 2018

    Do the children get a vote, or it is just you and your husband? (I would use "limited choices" if giving my children a vote under those circumstances--from two or three we were considering. Mine two were only 18 months apart so there was no help from the older one when the younger was born.)

  • Jen G May 07, 2018

    Brandy, I think it's great you wait until after your baby is born and get to know him/her before you pick a name! It makes the naming seem more special to me.

    Living frugally in urban Seattle:

    -Awesome weather week. No driving except for to my robotics classes and my son's faraway Saturday track meet. I took the bus downtown to meet my husband for a work event and I figured out why he prefers to bike. There are some crazy things happening on that busline! Biking is free and great exercise, so that is fine by me, even if it takes him longer to get home.

    -We get one tiny compost bin from city of Seattle (probably the size of a medium-sized garbage can? One you might have in a small kitchen) to put all of our food scraps and compostables for the week, which is fine until we need to do yardwork. We are charged $6/bag to put out additional compost (plus cost of the compostable bag). So when I trimmed our cherry tree and did some weeding, I had a huge pile of yard debris that Ive been trying to get into our compost without paying extra. A neighbor told me that the city would take tree branches cut and tied a certain way for free. So I spent part of my Saturday doing that. It will be great to get them out of my yard! While I was weeding our side yard, which faces a busy street, a guy approached me with his business card and said, "You need a MEXICAN to do that!" I just shook my head because I am MARRIED to a first-generation Mexican. He is a very hard worker, but more of the work-on-my-laptop variety of hard worker.

    -A neighbor gave me all of her ripe bananas, so I made a ton of banana bread to eat and freeze. My kids love it and its great to eat for dessert, breakfast or even stick in a lunch.

    - I gave away several pieces of nice furniture which we don't want to take on our move to our Buy Nothing neighborhood group. They were popular items this week on the site - I was happy to give back considering everything our family has received from this group of neighbors over the years. We have a really nice Pier One bench next to our bed that I bought several years ago, before I was so frugal, but one of the doors broke several years ago, so Saturday I pulled off both doors and all the screws, touched up the paint and added some fabric baskets to the shelf. It looks great! But I still don't anticipate needing it for our new house so I will give that away too.

    - I got more free moving boxes from a neighbor and a few more at my neighborhood Trader Joes. Apparently they keep an area in front full of giveaway boxes that I must have passed a hundred times without seeing over the years???

    - I bought two shirts and a pair of pants from the REI garage sale, with a 25% coupon. With all discounts, I paid $40. It's been awhile since I bought any new clothes and I typically only shop at thrift shops. But I'm trying to be smarter and more strategic with my clothing purchases....buying only high quality things that will last and that I love, whether it be from a thrift store, garage sale or retail store. It is hard to sometimes predict what will last and look good over the years, but I think I'm getting better at it. I probably won't buy retail (even highly discounted retail) again for awhile, but no regrets on these purchases!

Leave your comment

Guest October 23, 2018

Spring Gardening



 Introduction Sidebar 2017

Start HereMy Story

                           FOLLOW ME

               FACEBOOK              PINTEREST

The Kitchen Garden Sidebar
Sewing Project Sidebar
Grow Your Own Herbal Tea Sidebar
Grocery Shopping Sidebar
Learn to Can Sidebar
Grow Flowers for Less Sidebar

Spring Gardening



White Garden Sidebar

Birthdays Sidebar

Frugal Accomplishments Sidebar

72 hour kit sidebar
How To Eat Beans Every Night
Writing a Garage Sale List