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Frugal Accomplishments for the First Week in July

July Garden Harvest The Prudent Homemaker

It was really wonderful to hear from so many readers this past week in the comments! So many of you have been reading for years and I didn't know who you were. I loved reading your frugal accomplishments and was very, very touched to hear how much my site has helped so many of you over many years. I hope that you will consider commenting again in the future. I learned several things this past week in your comments. The most surprising idea I learned in the comments was one I had definitely never thought to do before: it was a reader's idea to sell four pieces of her vacuum cleaner on ebay since the motor on her vacuum had died. She said she sold two pieces within 48 hours! 

One of the most meaningful commenters from a first-time commenter was the following comment: "I have been reading here for a year and love the gentle joys found here! I love the fact that everyone is so supportive of each other in the pursuit of making do with little. In real life, if I talk about my frugality, the response is pity and offers to help! What I want to be met with congratulations for hard work and ingenuity is met, instead, with sympathy. Here, I love that we can celebrate each others' efforts. . . "

I love the excitement that comes from learning a new frugal living skill, saving money on something I need and/or want, finding a great deal or a new low-priced recipe, and making what I have work. I agree that when we share that excitement, people often respond with pity. I enjoy reading everyone's comments here, celebrating with you and learning from all of you. Having more people comment certainly makes frugal living feel less lonely, and I came away from reading your comments feeling more encouraged and having learned new ideas to save money.

Here are my own frugal accomplishments for this past week:

 

I hemmed two pairs of pants for a friend of ours who is leaving soon to serve a mission.

I checked out an e-book from the library.

The children watched several shows on our free trial of Amazon Prime.

I tried a couple of new recipes. No one loved them and I won't make them again, but we went ahead and ate the dishes anyway.

I took advantage of a Fourth of July sale to purchase some replacement plates to replace some of our broken plates. The company has started making the same pattern in melamine. I bought a few of the salad plates (which is what we use for the children) in porcelain and a few in melamine. The melamine ones can't go in the microwave, but they may be a solution for most of the time to keep so many from being broken. I got 20% off the plates on sale, plus free shipping--and my items arrived in a day and a half!

I harvested New Zealand spinach, chives, and green onions from my garden.

My second son and I will be taking care of a friend's chickens and gardens while they are out of town. We'll get to collect eggs and pick tomatoes, cucumbers, and green beans while they are gone (and anything else that is ripe). This is the friend who has the cooled greenhouse who shared produce with us last week. Several of you asked if she would share photos of her greenhouse. She agreed to let me share, so I will take some photos of it to share in a post! The photo above is taken in her greenhouse.

Before she left, she gave us two plastic grocery bags of tomatoes and two of cucumbers. 

We then picked more tomatoes, cucumbers, and some lettuce from her garden after she left (lettuce in July--the wonder of a cooled greenhouse!) and collected two dozen eggs.

What did you do to save money last week? Please share in the comments!  Keep encouraging one another in your celebrations of frugal living; I love the support you give to one another!

 

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Comments

  • Laurie in central NC July 13, 2018

    Becky, I've had the same experience with a hired pet sitter, as far as the garden. She does thankfully take good care of the animals, but seems to have little interest in the garden. And yes, I have lots of takers if I pick, wash, and bring the vegis to them!

  • Trista July 09, 2018

    I was wondering which shows your children have been enjoying on amazon prime?

  • "Just Add Magic" (three seasons, but they are labeled 1, 2, and 2 part b) and "The Kicks."

  • Trista July 09, 2018

    Thanks for the recommendation!

  • Megan July 10, 2018

    Have you guys tried The Worst Witch? It is a book series that Netflix has made into a tv show. If I remember correctly you don’t have Netflix, but the book series might be something they like (who knows if the library might have the dvds also)? :)

    They reminded me of Harry Potter, but this series was actually written in the 70s & 80s! I haven’t read them all yet, so I would recommend pre-reading before the kiddos (but they’re short so they should go fast).

  • Myra July 09, 2018

    Good morning! I am a long time reader and I don't comment every week but I do comment from time to time and I do read every comment to glean ideas from all of you. I don't feel I have been frugal the past couple of weeks because we are in the process of purchasing a house and that doesn't seem very frugal to most people. However, even in that aspect, I'm trying to save as much money as I can. Even though we were approved for a good sized loan,we looked at what the payments would be and decided on what would be affordable for us. We are in a position where we need to move quickly but we were determined not to just take the first thing we could find. My husband prayed about it, set an amount that we felt was reasonable for us, and started searching. We found a home that is big enough for us and when we sat down to discuss an offer, it was exactly what my husband had prayed about! This will be my first home to own and I am very excited. However, everyone is already asking if we plan to buy new furniture, am I redecorating, etc. My desire is to totally redecorate of course, but I know in my head that I can't afford that so I started making a list of needs and wants and I will turn that into a garage sale list. The ladies in my church have a group text we call "The Swap Shop" where people will post gently used items for free or for just a few dollars. I was able to get a queen size bed frame for my bed which is currently sitting on the floor because we didn't have a bed frame. I got it for free. Not really a frugal accomplishment, but as I have started packing up nonessential items, I have been decluttering as well. We ate at home all weekend, eating from the freezer and pantry so that I won't have a lot of food stuff to move. Oh, and got a free bag of ice. We have an ice machine in town that dispenses 16 pound bags of ice for two dollars a bag. If the " blue light" is flashing you can get two bags of free ice. I had to go to the store and came by as it was flashing. I got a free bag. That's all this week. Can't wait to read everyone else's accomplishments!

  • diana July 09, 2018

    Oh a greenhouse...I wish you could have one for you and your family...and chickens too.

  • Shelley July 09, 2018

    Hi All!
    I was able to find strawberries for $.99 a pound, green apples $.77 a pound and ears of corn for $.19 a ear. Butter was also only $1.99 a pound.
    One of my friends from college flew in from CA. We live in GA. We went thrift store shopping I was able to get a suitcase (vintage) 3 dresses and 2 tops for $11.13
    My van is not working well....so today I must take it in to get looked at.
    Looking forward to other comments

  • I love the cooled greenhouse. What a neat concept for your area. I love your blog and frugality. There was a time when I had to be frugal because of necessity and having over $130k of consumer debt. We’re now out of debt and in a much better place financially, but we are still pretty frugal because we want to be. I love your blog as much now as I did before!

  • Megan Z. July 09, 2018

    I’ve been on vacation so didn’t have a chance to post last week. I was blown away by how much of a community that has been assembled around this blog. There are so many more than I imagined who are trying to live prudent frugal lives for one reason or another. How wonderful to be able to glean so many great ideas!

    My husband was in Boston for business. We had to pay for my plane ticket but hotel was paid for. We went to JFK house- it was free and because it was Sunday parking was free. We went out to eat for free compliments of his employer. We walked around the city and didn’t buy any souvenirs.

    I then went to my parents where aside from some food purchases everything else has been taken care of. I found 2 tops at the thrift store for $6. One was a lululemon which appeared to have retailed for $58. It’s a comfy top but I can’t imagine spending that much.

    My days have been spent walking, going to the beach and relaxing. All in all a fairly frugal trip although I did have to pay transportation costs to get to my parents.

    My husband is back home- he’s been checking on my garden. He harvested 8 fairytale eggplant, 6 cucumbers and a handful of beans.

    When I get back aside from some house repairs we want to do and grocery shopping I want to make rest of the month no spend. I’ve been following the Frugalwoods no spend July but didn’t choose to partake right now because of being gone.

  • Jess July 09, 2018

    I'm following the Frugalwoods UFM too!

  • Heidi July 09, 2018

    I follow the Frugalwoods too. I am trying their approach to paying for everything with a credit card (which is paid in full each month). So far so good. The card I use sends me a text alert for each purchase, and I can immediately see how much my balance is. It really makes me think about purchases and if I can afford them. The only downside WINCO doesn't accept credit cards and that is where I do most of my grocery shopping.

  • Darcy July 09, 2018

    Thank you, Brandy, for all you do on your site. It has encouraged me so many times to keep going on our frugal journey. I am also consistently inspired by the comments of your readers. I read every one!

    Frugal Accomplishments at our house:

    I harvested our first pepper, some lettuce, basil, and chamomile.

    Our oldest daughter and son-in-law hosted the 4th at their house. It was a potluck meal, as it usually is. My husband and I brought bratwurst, hot dogs, and pasta salad. Knowing that we would be bringing food, all items were bought at really good discounts whenever they were on sale (Johnsonville brats for $1.99 per one pound package, Oscar Mayer all-beef hot dogs for $1.50 per pack, and pasta for 50 cents per box).

    Our biggest frugal finds this week were eggs for 68 cents per dozen at our local Food 4 Less and kale for 39 cents per pound at Jewel.

    We were able to turn off the air and open the windows a couple of times this week after our intense heat. The temperature is going up again this week but every day we can turn off the air is a win.

    Have a good week!

  • Janet July 11, 2018

    It is interesting how different areas cost of living is so varied. Oscar Meyer beef hot dogs in my area on deap sale are $3.00 per package. Gas is $3.05 per gallon and Milk is $$3.00 per gallon even at the Aldi.

  • erin mason July 09, 2018

    I've enjoyed your writings for a few months now and I love the calmness reflected in your work. Your writing reflects the love you obviously have for your family and faith and in today's world of gadgetry and agendas, time slows for me the reader. I love your floral arrangements. A full life includes the beauty of flowers!

  • Kelly July 09, 2018

    Last week, I was on vacation. We were treated to an early birthday dinner this past Saturday to celebrate my husband's upcoming birthday at a local BBQ joint! My parents had come to my town for our annual Sock-Hop. Car cruise-ins are a big thing around here. My father owns a 1953 Chevy Pick-up that he restored. It's a bright orange. It's his pride and joy! I have a picture of my son at 4 months old..holding onto the steering wheel with his eyes wide open. I plan to use that truck to take his Senior pics in 4 years. The woman who organizes the Sock-Hop picks a charity to donate the monies raised. This year she chose our local school district and plans to use the money to buy more security cameras for each school in the district, starting with the high school and middle Schools. My son will be a freshman in the fall.

    ~~Accepted a t-shirt from my Mom she bought for me at the Sock-Hop, proceeds to go to the school cameras.

    ~~got 3 free magazines in the mail via Recyclebank

    ~~stayed home quite a bit, enjoyed local Fireworks on Sunday night

    Thank you Brandy for providing us with this outlet to share and rejoice with one another.

    I'm curious...how is Ms Winter doing with her college classes? I miss hearing about her stories and projects she's worked on. Maybe she should start a blog too ;)

  • Miriam in Finland July 09, 2018

    A blog of her own is a great idea!

  • Caitlin July 09, 2018

    I bought a ton of chicken for .79 cents per pound and made schmaltz with all of the skin. My fiancé built a set of pantry shelves for me and I packed a ton of things away. I also made laundry detergent. We are working on building our savings and putting away for our small wedding in October. I'll be wearing a beautiful blue dress I already own.

  • mable July 09, 2018

    I love schmaltz! Hardly anyone I know makes it anymore, so I always feel odd telling people that something they ate was cooked in schmaltz.

  • Luba @ Healthy with Luba July 09, 2018

    I have been making do quite a bit instead of running to the grocery store. Surprisingly, we are not suffering one bit!
    We are opening windows and running fans instead of running the A/C.
    I set up two appointments back to back last Friday. The second canceled on me, but it was a good way to potentially save time, money, and gas.
    This week I have more appointments back-to-back in the same or very close locations and on the same day. It beats driving around so much and allows me to be home more.
    We made our own bread using the bread machine.
    I cooked quite a bit of food on Saturday to avoid using the stove/oven later. Some of the food I will freeze.
    We continued to line dry our clothes.

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