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Frugal Accomplishments for the Second Week in July

Grapes in Basket The Prudent Homemaker

I collected eggs from my friend's chickens and picked cucumbers, a few green beans, and tomatoes from her garden.

I canned a batch of dill pickles from the cucumbers.

July Harvest The Prudent Homemaker 

I harvested grapes, tomatoes, oregano, basil, and figs from my garden.

In the garden, I sowed seeds for red noodle beans, red zinnias, white zinnias, Genovese basil, Thai basil, Dark Siam basil, carrots, Chinese lanterns (hoping that this time they grow!), and parsley. It's much later than I normally sow seeds in the garden for these things, but many of my seeds did not come up earlier, or came up only to be eaten by bugs, so I am trying again. 

While weeding, I found a few carrots that had grown in one spot from seed dropping from carrots in my garden. I carefully dug them and replanted them where they could grow larger.

Grapes in Basket 2 The Prudent Homemaker

I took cuttings from two sweet potato vines to root in water to make new plants. These are a decorative vine; they do not make sweet potatoes. I took short cuttings from the tips of the plants (about 4-5 inches long) and took off the bottom leaves. Where the leaves were, the plants began to root in water after 4 days. Later in the week, I took additional cuttings from the other type of sweet potato vine to root as well. I plan to transplant these to pots in my white garden. These are an annual that does better in  more mild and humid climates than here (I saw them growing quite large and beautiful in the sun in Missouri a couple of years ago) but here they need a bit of protection from the sun to keep the leaves from burning to a crisp.

We had a very humid week. This is "monsoon season" here, but I think it would be more appropriately named, "cloudy season" as there is not much rain. We got a tiny bit of rain on Monday night, but it was enough that I was able to leave the drip irrigation and sprinklers off on Tuesday. The clouds bring lots of humidity, and they brought the temperature down below 100° for several days. I took advantage of the cloudy, cooler (only 96°F/35°C and humid!) days and worked in the garden doing lots of weeding. I put an ice cream bucket under the drip from the air conditioning; when it is humid like it has been this past week, I can collect several gallons of water from it each day, which I used to water pots on my patio along with water I collected in a bucket while waiting for the shower to warm.

I purchased some dahlia tubers online on 50% off clearance with free shipping.

I purchased some children's clothes online that were on sale and clearance that were not much more than local thrift-store prices.

I gave my two older sons a haircut. My husband and I cut his hair.

I went to purchase chicken on sale earlier this week and the store was out of it, so I got a raincheck.

Tomato Salad The Prudent Homemaker

What did you do to save money this past week?

 

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Comments

  • Mary July 17, 2018

    Hi to all -

    My frugal ways for last week
    - stayed home most of the week
    - worked on swagbucks and surveys
    - returned books to the library on time & checked out More books & learned you have option to email your receipt (I love that! Less papers in my purse)
    - washed ziplocks and reuse
    - washed full loads
    - hung clothes to dry
    - ate all home cooked meals and leftovers
    - picked up freebies from grocery store - cereal, big bottle of 100 % juice & 18 ct eggs
    - accepted tomatoes from someone who came to visit

    Thanks Brandy for having this community. I appreciate it. It’s so helpful focusing on how people save. I learn so much!

  • http://Vickie@Vickies Kitchen And Garden July 17, 2018

    I love hearing all about your garden. I'm glad it's doing so well and your neighbors too. I've harvested zucchini so far and today made zucchini lasagna. So good. Here are the ways I've saved this past week
    http://www.vickieskitchenandgarden.com/2018/07/my-frugal-ways-this-past-week-71518.html

  • Carolyn July 17, 2018

    Down south you are way ahead of us up north. Blueberries are in full swing, picking carrots, spinach, and radishes, but the tomatoes, cucumbers and melons won’t be ready until next month. Our chickens have started laying , but we are only getting three to four eggs a day from the dozen hens. My two boys’ hair grow so fast. My younger was looking pretty bushy as was the older, and the younger advised hubby he needed a haircut. Gettier easier as I don’t need to ask him, the boys do themselves. Saves me time and money having him do them, and never a bad haircut. Our cucumber, squash, melons, cabbage, broccoli, peppers, tomatoes and basil are all growing well. We had a dry spell and had to do watering, but are getting good rain today that we needed for the garden.

  • Tina S. July 17, 2018

    Mine was not a frugal week. First, I chipped a tooth (going to the dentist today). And then I dropped a glass in our bathroom sink and cracked it (the sink, not the glass, oddly enough). It's not a fix we can do ourselves - it's an undermount porcelain sink and beyond my skill level to replace. So I bought a new sink and a new drain, and scheduled the repair. Total cost of parts/repair will be around $500.

    Things at my work exploded. I work in a small medical office and one of our practitioners is leaving in August. This person has a full schedule so we are trying to find someone to take up the slack. It's been really stressful.

    And it's been hot (ok, Seattle hot, low 90s, but 70% of people here don't have air conditioning). We keep the condo closed up all day so it is not too bad. We eat dinner out on our patio, which is really nice. I made all meals at home except for one.

    Had an inexpensive lunch out on Sunday with two friends I rarely see. We then went to Starbucks and one friend treated. We live in different areas around Seattle so we find a central place to meet. We often meet at a garden center, have coffee, and then take a walk, but it was too hot to do that. So I found an inexpensive yet delicious Thai lunch café and we met there. Enjoyed some nice conversation and some girl time. :)

    I was planning on taking this whole week off from work to continue on the bedroom painting project, but my plans were thwarted by the heat. So I ended up working for a few hours yesterday, which my boss appreciated. I am working for a few hours today as well (after my dentist appointment). Tomorrow it's supposed to be cooler so I will be able to open up the windows and continue with painting.

    My herbs are doing well on my patio, and there are a bunch of small jalapenos on my four plants. I collected seeds from my green onions and will plant these in two different pots so I can have green onions throughout the winter (we are on the south end of our condo building, and it's a zone 8 microclimate, so most plants overwinter quite well).

    I really enjoy reading everyone's comments. And, Brandy, your photos are so beautiful. Thanks for hosting this great community.

  • Marivene July 17, 2018

    *Cashed a pine cone check.
    *Mowed the back yard & recycled the grass clippings as mulch on the back perimeter beds.
    *Continued to pick & dehydrate pie cherries. Made two large gluten-free cobblers to use at the meal after my grandson was ordained to the Aaronic Priesthood.
    *Continued to pick blackberries from our patch.
    *Met with an individual from the funeral home & pre-planned my funeral. I have yet to attend a funeral where ANYONE commented on the finish or ornamentation of the casket. It is on display for several hours, tops, then it is buried, & it is my opinion that the least expensive ones still meet all the manufacturing requirements of the most expensive, so my wishes are now recorded. No viewings, no signing book, no thank you cards, & the smaller size of funeral programs, since those fit best into Books of Remembrance, & in our family, that is where they will end up. I did not not pre-pay; I just pre-planned, which is free. This removed a weight from my shoulders, knowing the task of trying to make all those choices will no longer fall on, or cause disagreements among my children.
    *We purchased a gravesite in our local cemetery. The prices continue to rise every year, & are scheduled to rise again next year, so it is one more thing that is now taken care of.

  • mable July 17, 2018

    Marivene:
    A few years ago my husband asked me what I wanted for Christmas and I told him a casket, so that I would be sure that he would not spend excessive amounts of money on mine. It took me two Christmases to convince him but the result was lovely I like having it in our basement; it gives me a sense of peace and I like the idea that I will be lying in a box made by someone who loved me. He did insist that I tell several of our friends that I had asked him to make me one (years, I hope) in advance. He said if I died under mysterious circumstances, he did not want the police to go to the basement and find he'd done some pre-planning regarding my demise.

  • Marivene July 17, 2018

    Mabel, in 2010 both my husband & planned our funeral programs, writing down the hymns we wanted, etc. he wants a particular song sung at his funeral, & I previously had no idea. Now I do, & have acquired the music for it. If you & your husband did the same, making a note that the casket was handmade & stating the location, it should alleviate his concerns. I was surprised at the emotional load that was lifted after these two thing were done.

    In most families, there are several individuals who will find “something” they think should have been done differently. The ability to reply, “Mom chose that herself; it’s what she wanted” in those instances is priceless.

  • SJ in Vancouver BC Canada July 18, 2018

    My father passed away suddenly and I was left to plan his service and burial. I would have loved to have found a file with that kind of information in it.

  • ellie's friend from Canada July 19, 2018

    SJ,

    Condolences for you about your father. A sudden death is very hard for those left behind. My father passed away suddenly, too, and I know how difficult it is. I am sure your father would have liked the service you planned for him. Prayers for you. Ann

  • Marivene July 20, 2018

    SJ, that is exactly the situation we hope to avoid!

  • mmckms July 21, 2018

    Mabel and Marivene,
    Just another thought for you...when my mother passed away from cancer very young, I ordered a pall for the casket because our church did not allow fresh flowers at the alter for funerals (don't really know why) but anyway I went to a local christian book store and they were absolutely wonderful as I didn't have a lot of time to figure something out. Mother had a very inexpensive casket per her request. The crazy thing is that we have used that pall at so many family members funerals, I even went back and hand embroidered the names of each person in the family in gold thread on the underside hem that we have used it on their casket. It has become a family heirloom. The cost back then was $100 for it and it is beautiful and way cheaper than all the flowers that we would have paid for on the casket.
    Thanks for the great laugh this morning regarding casket in the basement!!!! I am cracking up and love all yall crazy frugal friends in the cyber world!!

  • Jennifer C in Phoenix, AZ July 17, 2018

    Hello, everyone.

    Third week in a row commenting, woohoo!

    Brandy, I was thinking about you and your explanation about your weather that you posted a year or two ago, I think. You said that in your pocket, even if Las Vegas gets rain, you usually don't. I remembered that was it poured down rain here on Monday and Tuesday, and throughout the week, even today, as it has rained off and on. We were over 100 days without rain, but this past week we have had a ton of rain. Last Monday the weather was so bad, one of those "haboobs". I sat in my third floor office and watched a massive cloud of dust move between two buildings, the wind was howling and the rain was pouring down. It was crazy. I had to leave my office and walk to my car in the storm because the power went out at my house and my family was home with no power. My brand-new-driver daughter was on her way to work when the storm hit and she had to pull over and shelter at a Starbucks (oh, the torture) because she was too scared to drive in the storm.

    I picked up my family and we went out to eat (ouch!) and then decided to go home and try to sleep, as the power company was saying that the power should be restored by early morning. We could have gone to my dad's, but I wasn't sure that was a much better option for various reasons. We opened the windows; even though there wasn't a breeze, at least it was fresh air, and suffered through the night. We put wet wash clothes on our heads. I was ever so thankful when the power came back on at 4:30am. Thank you, Lord, for modern conveniences.

    I was also very worried about the contents of my fridge and freezer as I had just done a two-week shopping trip (which worked pretty well for my grocery budget, btw. Need to do a few tweaks to the system). But, we did not open the doors at all the whole outage and, thank you, Lord, again, we lost nothing!! The ice didn't even look like it had melted at all. Our fridge runs a little too cold, which used to annoy me, but in this case I was thrilled. We very carefully checked over everything and have eaten things with no problem. I am ever so grateful for that.

    My husband also took off Monday and Tuesday in order to be home for the installation of our solar panels. We can not wait for this process to be completed; this is our first summer in this house and our power bill last month was $400. And that's trying hard to be conscious, only use appliances during off-peak, etc. The solar panels should help at least a little bit.

    It was good timing for him to be off as our sitter was out of town and my daughter can't watch the boys all the time. As a treat, he took our two younger sons to Peter Piper Pizza. They had earned free personal pizzas from the library program and he purchased drinks and tokens for them. He said he spent $17, and they had enough tokens to get a little something from the prize table. Just enough to be a treat for them. This happened before the power outage or we might have re-thought that plan.

    Thursday, my daughter wasn't available to babysit, so I asked another friend to watch my boys. I hate asking people to watch my kids and am very careful to offer payment, especially when it's an all day thing like this. When I set up this date, I didn't specifically mention payment, but we had discussed payment previously so I figured she knew I meant to pay her. When I dropped off the kids and handed her the check, she was surprised but kept the check. When I got home that night, the boys told me that I had a package. Inside was a beautiful flower pin (https://www.etsy.com/shop/PinsOfGrace), and a note returning my check. It was such a blessing and I was very grateful. I have been the sitter giving of myself for no payment many times, so I know how nice it is to be paid, and it was a sacrifice of the heart on her part to return the money. (Does that make sense?)

    So, we were able to have a whole week of not having to pay sitter fees.

    This was a blessing because this week my daughter is going to a youth conference in Colorado. Long story short (lack of hours on her job mostly), we wound up having to pay her way, all $350 of it. She had just enough money to cover the cost of her meals, but then we got nervous because they extended the trip by two meals, and she is gluten-free so her meals are often more expensive than the dollar menu. We talked it over and put it in the Lord's hands and her carefulness. Yesterday, out of the blue, I got a text message from someone in the church asking if any of my kids were going on the trip. I replied that my daughter was, and she said that she would like to donate $60 to her expenses. I was so thankful as this ensures that my daughter has plenty of money for her meals, and probably some to make an offering, with leftovers. God just dropped us on this family's heart.

    Saturday, I had to venture out to the hardware store so I decided to check out the Lutheran Thrift Store that was close by (we're new to the area). It was amazing. Like a furniture store haven. I found the furniture a little pricey, but then I realized that most of the stuff was quality, not the junk I usually find at the chain thrift stores. And they have 50% off sales on certain things. So a nice china cabinet might be $125, but then 50% off. I didn't buy any furniture and wasn't going to buy anything until I noticed that the throw pillows were $3 each, and they were one of the things that were 50% off. I went through the shelves and pulled out 6 pillows that matched my living room color scheme. I paid $9. I came home and immediately arranged them on my sofa and the face lift to the whole room was instantaneous. I mentioned previously that I am trying to beautify my home on pennies and this definitely fit the bill.

    My son was doing online school through a new program this past semester, which was not working, so we are switching him to another online school that we used several years ago, before he switched to a private school (confused yet?). This school offers a computer to use (which we need) and a stipend for the internet. This will be a huge blessing and I think the school will be a better fit for him.

    That's all I have for this week. I continue to be amazed that, while life happens, we are always taken care of. We may not have everything that we want (I really want to take my kids on a vacation), but we have everything that we need and are very well off compared to many (a nice house, paid-off vehicles, clothes and food, not to mention all of the blessings listed above).

    Have a great week, everyone.

  • Phoenix averages 8 inches a year. Tuscon gets just under 12, and Las Vegas gets all of 4 inches of rain a year (measured downtown at the airport). We see the clouds and we can smell the rain, but it usually falls west, east, and especially south of us, no doubt influenced by the mountains and the shape of the valley. I read about rain downtown (and there were flash flood warnings the same days) for Thursday and Friday, but it didn't rain here. The clouds sure were pretty, though, and a nice change from always having blue skies!

  • Ruthie July 17, 2018

    Brandy- where did you order your dahlia tubers from?

    I’ve been faithfully using up my refrigerator and freezer food so my meals have been from there - I’ve made fried rice using up frozen veggies and chicken, pulled pork, enchiladas using frozen sauce ( homemade and sooo much better than canned), beef stroganoff, zucchini bread to use frozen zucchini, pumpkin cookies, French toast (using odds and ends of frozen buns), pavlova using leftover egg whites and frozen cream. It’s been nice to keep my grocery shopping to a minimum.

    I was able to repair a very useful hoe that does weeds. I use it daily and it fell apart so my husband helped me
    drill a hole and put a bolt in it.

    A co worker of my husband has season tickets to Eccles theater performances and had to switch with someone else which left one ticket available. He was going to just throw it away but my husband asked if I mind going alone. I didn’t mind so I got to see Phantom of the opera for free. It was fantastic!

    I pick up a couple of library books and just randomly decided to walk there which is about two miles. I’ve never done that but felt I should. On the way I saw a police car parked at a dear friends house. She had just passed away. I was able to be there because I followed an impression and I’m grateful. The frugal side was that I saved gas and got free exercise.

  • Eden Brothers. I just got on their site and now they say they are all sold out. :(

  • Melonie K. July 17, 2018

    I haven't posted or commented for a bit - finally wrote up a post for the past five weeks! We are in the throes of monsoon season as well, and so grateful for the rain we're getting. It sounds like we are getting more than your area, Brandy, but we aren't getting as much as some. NWS says that the areas west and north of Tucson are at 600% average monsoon rainfall, but those of us south and east are at 50% of normal. Booooo!!!

    Wishing everyone a wonderful week!
    http://meloniek.com/2018/07/frugal-accomplishments-weeks-ending-15-july-2018/

  • Erika July 17, 2018

    The grapes you harvested look so delicious! Great work getting some despite the huge this year!

    Around here I'm in a battle with larder beetles, so I am clocking in long hours cleaning every day. I'm still getting other things done too while at it though.

    My list for the later part of the week (I posted late the week before) can be found here...

    http://makedohomemaker.blogspot.com/2018/07/frugal-friday-money-saving-weekly-recap_15.html

    Hope everyone has a great week!

  • Heidi Louise July 17, 2018

    Since U.S. postage stamps cost the same no matter what the picture, I choose designs I like. I notice a non-flag stamp on a personal letter/card, and think others do as well. Last summer, USPS tried out textured stamps, (round sports balls), and the image-changing eclipse stamps. Yesterday, I got scratch-and-sniff "frozen treats" stamps-- brightly colored popsicles.

    We traveled to in-law's and stayed in a motel. Although not directly frugal to us, we kept the room AC at a reasonable setting and turned it hotter when we weren't in the room, and we don't waste towels. These are only penny savings for the motel, yet I like to think it will help them stay in business. Also, after working motel housekeeping one summer long ago, I am very respectful of the maid's work and time. Appreciated the free fruit basket in the lobby all day, along with included breakfast. I would rather they just dropped prices overall instead of having a points program, but played along and got points for the room, at checking in, for filling out post-trip survey on email, and a follow-up coupon if we return. We have general credit card points to pay for part of bill as well.

    Sister-in-law who lives in much larger city than we do mentioned she had switched from WalMart to Aldi's, and cut her grocery bill in half.

    As others have written, many things we do frugally are so much habit that I don't notice them. Our library has been getting more new books in, which we appreciate. We took a cooler of water and snacks in the car on our trip, and the motel had an in-room mini-fridge to keep extras in. (Ironing boards and irons and hair dryers are also now standard in chain motels). Fans are running in the house. Meals are planned for frugal shopping, cooking ourselves, making enough for leftovers.

    The caterpillars ate all the leaves off the potted parsley plant I put next to the dill they were eating, as well as finishing off the dill I was trying to distract them from. I hope I get to see the butterflies after they hatch, because I sure fed them enough! I didn't mind them enough to squash them, was more interested in seeing what would happen.

  • Nancy in Eastern Washington July 17, 2018

    Last week we picked lettuce, broccoli, snow peas, a couple of bulbs of garlic as we needed them, swiss chard, green onions, herbs as needed and cauliflower. We also picked our first zucchini. that means in a couple of weeks, we will be inundated with them.

    I made a chicken vegetable stir fry with veggies from the garden. My DH says he looks forward to this meal all year. We served them with some of the spaghettis noodles I got for 33¢ a pound a couple of months ago. Also got some pork ribs for 99¢ a pound, and the DH BBQ'd them for dinner. We ate on that for a while with salad from the garden. Drank water with lemon squeezed into it.

    We don't have air conditioning in our house. We have insulated curtains on most of our windows, which are good for keeping the sun out in the summer and the heat in in the winter. We run two fans in the living room and one in the bedroom. when I am blanching things for the freezer, or have the oven on (not often in the summer) I bring one of the fans to the kitchen to add to my little table top one. I cools down at night, so we sleep well. And like I said last week, if it gets really hot we can basically live in our basement.

    Dried laundry on the line. I love the smell of freshly laundered sheets dried outside.

    Went swimming a couple of days this week. It felt great.

    Planted the last of the $1.99 flat of marigolds. One of the stores brought in too many, so sold them for $1.99 per flat. There were at least 48 plants in the flat. I got the small bright yellow ones. They look so cheerful.

    There was more, I am sure, but that is all I can think of for the moment.

    Hope everyone has a great week. I love reading the comments, so decided I should start contributing.

  • Lilli July 17, 2018

    I love all the rain we continue to have. The temperature cools and makes the house bearable. I have to watch my laundry drying carefully but the unbearable heat does dry them quickly in between storms. We had a horrendous downpour which led me to discover a pin size hole in the roof. This is good as it allows me to repair it without suffering major ceiling damage. My neighbor has explained how to take care of it. Neighbors family is in vacation and he works many long hours. I cut his postage stamp size lawn to prevent him from receiving citation from city. Cut mine too .
    Sugar cookie has many extended family members entertaining her. That have celebrated several birthdays and she has had several outings. I love how all her family is just family. No one is defined as a half or step sibling. Non family that married other family still just created family. Love really is a beautiful thing. All the children have gotten old enough to drive and they all make time to carry her off to do her favorite activities which they kindly pay for.
    My summer is not going as planned. Part of being frugal for me is being patient. I have decided for a while host of boring details, to sit quietly for three weeks. It will cost me the least amount of money to handle my troubles this way. My car will be taken care of either by the recall or by my warranty but I can't drive the car for three weeks . I find ways to entertain myself and have made a list of things that need to be done least I find myself bored.
    Being practical, I redeemed Swagbucks for a Visa giftcard. I planned on buying a roku device. Instead, I used the 25.00 with four 10.00 Google express credits to purchase necessities for my household. I placed four separate orders of 16.00 a piece and bought catfood, litter, dog food and girl supplies for sugar cookie. I used a small amount to buy me a DVD of 4 classic movies. The cash I saved will be put up for any possible charges I incur at the car dealership.
    I set up a new email and Amazon account for sugar cookie. I checked into the Amazon prime discount for people who receive benefits and it is only 6.00 a month. I thank the kind reader who shared this info. I googled it and it popped right up. We currently are using the free month. I was able to get 3 months of kindle unlimited for 99 cents.
    We do not qualify for a free trial of Hulu so I used ebates to get it and make 15.00. I believe if I make another 10.00 small purchase somewhere, we will get a 25.00 bonus bonus.
    I spend an hour a day doing Swagbucks surveys. I am averaging 300 to 500 points a day and hope to offset any extra bills next month.
    The movie ticket deal at coca cola has ended. My month of collecting caps netted sugar cookie 10 movie tickets, 10 popcorn and 10 LG drinks. I also ordered her a magazine I have never seen available for free anywhere. I also order her a free Shutterfly print we will use for a collage of family members . I figure I spent 4 hours this month collecting caps.
    I happily brought home several treasures. 8 large bottles of 91% alcohol with safety seal intact, this is part of what we use to make puppy ear cleaner with. 14 lbs Epson salt, new in sealed bag. One 6 ft extension cord. Several cigarette lighters. These are put away to light candles. I also collected 12 neon colored micro fiber mitts used to wash cars. They are purchased from a vending machine to wash cars and then they are tossed in the trashcan or left on ground. They are great for cleaning my baseboards, light fixtures etc. My college daughter grabbed the Epson salts and floated in the bath for an hour. She is still shaking her head.
    I want to thank everyone for their kindness. I am fortunate that our tiny home I purchased at foreclosure is paid for. My car wreck also left me with a new car paid for. Sugar cookie and I have everything we need and a good bit of what we want. Our bills are few but taxes and insurance are hefty. Our lifestyle is simple and so many freebies are out there to enjoy. My frugality is pretty extreme at the moment but only when it applies to myself. I do everything I can to make sugar cookie happy and content. In fact, a little birdie told me that during the big Amazon sale yesterday, her sister bought her a fire stick on sale.
    So college boy left on a Sunday for the Army. By Thursday they dropped him back home ! Seems all the glitches ended up with his paperwork expiring and it had to be redone and resubmitted. His new date is the 30th. I will be having a long talk with a new recruiter if this falls through for the 4th time. I keep reminding myself that perhaps it serves some great reason for him to be delayed. I
    While at grocery store using free Redbox rental code, I saw a large mason jar someone left in trashcan by the coinstar machine. I rescued the poor lost jar and rehomed him. He now is fresh and clean and holding my bacon grease. College girl just keeps shaking her head at me. I explained that I will not be embarrassed. I mean I just recycled a piece of glass. She thinks I am nuts. That's okay. A little crazy never hurt anyone.

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