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Frugal Accomplishments For the Second Week of March

Open Door in Spring The Prudent Homemaker

It was so incredibly beautiful this week.

I cut daffodils from the garden for the table.

We celebrated a simple birthday celebration for a child at home.

Snow Peas and Radishes The Prudent Homemaker

I harvested radishes, cilantro, snow peas, green onions, and Swiss chard from the garden.

We went through clothing, packing up cold weather clothes and taking out summer clothes, including doing what I call "The Big Swap" where we hand down clothing to younger sibling as well as pack up outgrown clothing to be passed down at some point. I also went through several items in my closet, and found that several of my blouses are now too large, but that several other items I own still fit just fine--only better! We put aside several large bags of outgrown clothing to donate.

Naptime The Prudent Homemaker

My husband cut two sons' hair.

I turned some old broken jewelry that I've had for many years into some new jewelry for myself.

I mended a few leaks in the drip irrigation.

We said yes to offers of a hand-me-down bicycle and a scooter from two different people.

The children hopped around on a couple of pogo sticks that my mom picked up at a garage sale for $3 each.


What did you do to save money last week?

Octavius walking The Prudent Homemaker

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  • Juls Owings March 15, 2017

    We used to call the horseradish Mother or Grammy....because she was the one that wanted me to grow it so she could have it. We dug it a bit early to get a piece for her when she went in the nursing home and died...had cancer. My climbing roses are Rosa after my grandmother named Rosa. My push plow is Jimmie after my grandpa that pushed the same plow over 3 acres every year until his late 80s , then he did one acre by the house.

  • Melissa V March 14, 2017

    I have not posted in quite some time - life has been full of doctor visits and tests for 6 weeks now. I am keeping a daily food journal trying desperately to figure out what my trigger foods are. I may have pancreatic exocrine deficiency and am taking Creon (an enzyme) to see if my gut issues improve - so far it's a toss up since I never have enough days in a row that I am home and able to NOT take my anti-diarrheal and anti-anxiety meds. I will be scheduling a hysterectomy with some reconstruction soon (once I get the all clear from the GI doc) and then I will have lifting limits which will mean I will be unable to work for 6 weeks. Maybe then I can give the enzyme a good test. My husband's diabetic foot ulcer is still not healed and the podiatrist had to cut back the callous and open up a small pus pocket on it again. We have an appt this week for him to be fitted for diabetic insoles which will hopefully allow him to walk normally but still take all pressure off the ulcer. He also has the beginnings of what his Dad and Uncle have - it is called degenerative spine disease - the spine itself, not just the disks begins to fall apart. I hope and pray his doesn't progress as badly.
    So Frugal:
    **We used the tax refund to get our Danes up to date on all vaccines and purchase all of their heartworm and flea/tick meds for the year - to the tune of $800 - and out vet is the most reasonable one in the area! But, doing that is much, much cheaper than treating them for any of the diseases and they have been my sanity savers over the last year.
    **We picked up a free bag of both cat and dog food
    **I complained to Tidy Cat about their clumping litter which either didn't clump at all OR adhered itself to the bottom of the litter box so well that I had to take a spackle knife to it to get it off! They sent me 2 coupons for free BIG buckets of litter and 3 one dollar off coupons as well - sometimes it does pay to let a company know if you are disappointed in their new formulas!
    **A local grocery store had a big spring meat sale and we bought a huge pork loin for $1.29 a pound and beef loins for $2.99 a pound - we had them cut the steaks for us but the pork loin I ground up for making my own breakfast and Italian sausage. I packaged all of it into 2 person servings and vacuum sealed them. We also found chicken breast for $1.69 a pound and I packaged each breast singly and vac packed those as well. Each breast weighed about a pound! Hubby also hit the meat market north of us and got ground beef for $1.59 a pound in a 10 pound roll - I also packaged that into 1 pound packages and vac sealed those too.
    **I have brought home some food from the deli I work at that has been about to expire for my guys to eat on nights I work + All of the sliced meat ends, tomato ends and lettuce trimmings for my 2 hens.
    **I have lost 20 pounds (that I know of - may be more now) and most of my jeans need a belt to stay up (which I don't have any of). Luckily, I had saved my next size down clothes in the hope that I would need them again and found a couple pairs that fit. I also am helping a co-worker go thru her Mom's things and she is giving me any of the clothes I think I can use.
    **Took advantage of the library to get more insight into my gut issues and some more recipe ideas that may work for both hubby and myself so we aren't cooking 2 meals.
    **My Dad found free tile for our bathroom that has no flooring right now - just the plywood.
    **Cut up more of our branch/brush pile to use in the woodstove during the current cold snap. March has been very cold in comparison to February and we now have a decent amount of snow back on the ground.
    **I got my seed order and my red peppers are now planted in my little indoor greenhouse in a South window. I can't wait to see green!
    **Went to the Indian grocery to stock up on the gluten free flours I need and for spices we were low on. We also found spice packets for meals that have no onion or garlic in them that can be used with paneer (It is like cottage cheese, only in block form).
    **I am trying to get the last of my potatoes from the garden cooked up and frozen - they are all suddenly sprouting - the reds already have 6 inch stalks!
    **I made more bandannas to keep my head covered at work - I prefer them over ball caps - I need to look into some wild patterns or something though - I had a teenager ask me if I was Amish or Mennonite (while I was wearing jeans no less.....) I guess having hair to my waist (and it's getting quite grey) and then covering gave her the impression I was one or the other. I took it as a complement :)
    **I have restrained myself from going to the feed store - it's chick days and I really, really want some chicks and ducklings but I'd have to brood them in the house with the cold weather and they get really, really stinky and the down dust covers everything as their feathers come in!
    **We were gifted 2 recliner chairs that we will be moving into our RV once I sell the current pull-out love seat that is in there.
    **We started restocking our emergency bags -- we usually go thru them New Years Day and 4th of July but we were a little late this year. The fires out West pushed us into making sure we got that done! There wasn't near as much food in them as I thought there was so I am trying to remedy that as best I can and find some gluten free options for myself. There were only a few medications in the first aid kit that needed to be rotated out so we didn't do too bad there. I do need to stock a few things for the dogs that I hadn't thought about before - a pain killer (aspirin) and benedryl with a correct dosage for each of them. I also rotated the canned cat and dog food out and put new ones in their bags.
    **As part of the home energy savings for low income people, we not only got the house insulated and a roof leak fixed but our 20 year old furnace had a cracked heat exchanger that wasn't leaking CO gas - yet - so they said they had to put a new one in!! A 96% efficient name brand one with a higher BTU output (the old one was too small for the size of the house) and we didn't have to pay a thing!! I am waiting to see this months usage, since it will be more accurate of a true Michigan winter, to see if we've used less gas.

    Joy: Seeing the Robins and hearing the Red Winged Blackbirds again - although I'm thinking they are regretting their early arrival about now! The birds are becoming wonderfully noisy every morning again. And my hens started laying again as well :) Watching our very goofy younger Dane chase my husbands remote control truck around and around the yard - while the weeny Dane stands on the porch steps scared of it (he gets a very silly look on his face - he cannot figure out why she thinks it is so much fun! - same face he makes when she plays in the sprinkler :D )

    I hope you all have a wonderful week!

  • Pam March 14, 2017

    Hosted a brunch for friends on Sunday and to save money (and my sanity) asked one friend to make a punch, another to do the table-scape and last but never least, asked one more friend to make our dessert.

    Found a chambray blazer at a much lower price than I budgeted, looking forward to wearing it this spring and summer.

    Removed a measuring spoon caught in the "bowels/gears" of my garbage disposal and now it's working again!

  • Heather in L.A. March 14, 2017

    Bagged leg quarters are on sale again, #10 at .39 lb., this time with no limit. I plan to purchase $40 worth. With one bag I cut the leg from the thigh with kitchen shears, marinade the legs and throw the thighs in the crockpot to slow cook with a few bay leaves. I am rewarded with easily pulled chicken, once it cools a bit and almost two quarts of stock each time. The legs will get roasted or grilled. I flavor legs like I would wings. This one frugal thing has saved me so much over the years not just in the budget line, but time as well. Having already cooked chicken and stock as a base helps so much when things get hectic. My kids thing I'm crazy when I come home with a hundred pounds of leg quarters. It's almost a running joke with them. I also have been taking advantage of Boston butt and picnic hams(which are smoked boston butts) for .88-.99 a lb.

    We received our tax refund and my husband received his bonus in addition to our insurance overpayment on our previous house. This will come in handy as we have a small roof leak around our skylight and my daughters clutch in her jeep went out(it is a 2002 though), and I needed new tires. I am so thankful for the Lord's blessings.
    I have not started my garden like I had planned. I want to see what is in the existing landscaping. But I did find Dorsett gold and Anna apple trees at tractor supply for $12 ea. I got four.

  • Becky in Louisiana March 15, 2017

    I was under the weather all last week, so the daily grind kind of went by the wayside. But I did manage to...
    - Make a centerpiece for my daughter's upcoming baby shower. I did have to purchase items for it, since I have no baby things anymore. But I was able to find everything I needed at the Dollar Tree and it came together beautifully.
    - Decorate my home for Spring/Easter using items I already had around the house. One example is that I wrapped some old plastic Easter eggs with twine and placed them on some Spanish moss (it grows on the trees here) in a little basket. So cute.
    - Found 2 baskets for $1 each at Goodwill. One is very Easter-ish so it will be included in the decor. The other is very utilitarian, but still pretty, so it will be used to hold wash cloths in my bathroom.
    - I hardly had any money in the grocery budget for this month, so we're mostly living off our food storage. All last week we ate food that we already had in the house. Our neighbor is a hunter and really blessed us with a whole bunch of deer legs all winter long. We butchered the legs and made everything from stew meat to sausage with them. My father and husband are fishermen, so we had plenty of fish in the freezer as well. So last week we ate mostly deer and fish along with pantry-only side dishes and homemade bread. It's amazing how much tastier our meals become when I have to put more thought into them and get a little creative. The kids actually prefer the "lean" weeks. LOL
    - We've been in our home for a year now and I still have a pile of boxes that I haven't unpacked. So each day last week I emptied one box. A lot of it was thrown away, some re-boxed to give to a family in need (a friend told us about them last week) and other things finally placed where they belong. I was extra happy to find a couple of photo albums I thought we'd lost in the move!

    Like I said, I was sick and didn't get much done. But looking back on it, it really wasn't a bad week at all!

  • Heidi March 15, 2017

    That picture of your oldest holding your youngest is breathtaking...thank you for sharing.

  • TerriC March 17, 2017

    I was astonished to realize that was Octavius even though you did share that he'd started walking. I thought it was the baby girl just at first because he surely couldn't be that big...Sigh. Time does fly with this little ones! Spring cleaning going on here, hence my being late to post yet again. I actually have up a fresh post so there are two weeks to review. For some silly reason this week's post ended up on Wednesday's date. I'm pretty sure it was a mistake on my part but it was fully finished today, lol.

  • Terri, my baby girl is almost 5! It really does go so fast!

  • http://Margaret @ Live Like No One Else March 17, 2017

    Last week a local ethnic grocery store had 3lb bags of pears for $.99 each. So I dehydrated 15 lbs of them. :)

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