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Frugal Accomplishments for the Third Week in March

Iris in Ginger Jar The Prudent Homemaker

I cut daffodils, nasturtiums, and iris from the garden to enjoy in the house. I shared more photos earlier this week in my Spring Home Tour.

I opened the windows to air out the house.

I traded Meyer lemons from the garden for two dozen eggs.

Leeks The Prudent Homemaker

I harvested leeks, Meyer lemons, snow peas, Swiss chard, parsley, arugula, and green onions from the garden.

I mended a pair of jeans and a coat sleeve.

I turned a toddler bodysuit that had torn by the snaps into a shirt by cutting it off just below the leg holes and sewing a narrow hem.

I figured out a solution to a need/want using something else I already had, rather than buying something new.

I decided to not purchase more maternity clothing for hot weather, though that had been part of my original plan for the year. When it was in the mid-70's in January, it looked like I was going to need more clothing for the end of my pregnancy. Since the weather turned unusually cool after that and is still cool, I can get by with what I have and not need to look for more at the thrift store. 

I saved my parents $100 on a mobile repair on their motorhome. I had made cookies, and my dad asked if he could have two: one for him and one for the repairman. One of my daughters brought over the two cookies and gave one to the repairman. He was so touched with the homemade cookie that he said he would take $100 off their bill, and he did!

I asked if a procedure was necessary (it wasn't), and saved $30 plus the gas and time to have it done.


What did you do to save money this past week?




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  • Tammy March 25, 2018

    We ate at home every day this week. Went to library for entertainment. Danced in the kitchen for exercise while doing dishes and listening to gospel music on pandora. Used online resources, the library, and a few dollar tree items to tutor my grandchildren during spring break. Took nature walks with grandchildren for exercise and entertainment. Made it educational by giving them nature journals to write and draw in. Listened to husband sing and even joined in for entertainment. Found 7 really nice summer dresses for cheap at a thrift store. I couldn't even buy one for what I paid for all seven. Simply enjoyed being outside at the farm and even in front of our apartment in the sunshine and one evening during a gentle rain.
    Love your cookie story Brandy!

  • Marybeth March 28, 2018

    I dance in the kitchen too. I play music while I cook. Love that your husband sings to you. So romantic.

  • ellie's friend from Canada March 28, 2018

    hi Tammy

    When are you moving to the farm?
    you gave me a smile with your dancing in the kitchen

  • Siiri March 26, 2018

    Thanks to everybody for sharing!
    In the end of winter I brought in a bunch of (birch) branches and put them into big vase to wait. Now they have tiny leaves. I buy 1 daffodil (or tulip) and arrange it into vase with branches and enjoy it in kitchen, replacing flower now and then. We still have snow on the ground...
    I plan to color our Easter eggs all naturally this year so we can actually eat them later. It takes some planning ahead. I´m on top of it now :)
    We still heat our house with firewood. I have ceramic pot with lid and I put some meat and vegetables and half glass of water in the oven after heating it. After few hours later I have food ready.
    I got my potting soil from farm and planted flower seeds I had. They are on the window sill of my warmest room now, covered with plastic.
    My daughters (12 and 5 yrs old) went through the many small clothes of my oldest in the storage and made quite a fashion show to me, putting together many sets of clothing. I was amazed! They both enjoyed their time together. Older girl is skinny and younger one is not, so I saw that many long jeans fit my small girl well when the trousers are rolled up (sorry about the poor explanation). I would not have guessed that! I have enough trousers for her suddenly!
    Have a lovely week, everybody!

  • Marybeth March 26, 2018

    The tissues are beautiful. What a great way to use what you have. I love to read all the different ways you make extra money. So inspiring.

  • Bethany March 26, 2018

    I cooked a am from the freezer purchased on the Christmas sales, and replaced it with one bought on the Easter sale! Both were spiral sliced hams for .97/lb. Once we eat all the ham, I'll use the bone in a large pot of bean soup.

    Joanns had a Sunday only sale, I purchased fleece for 75% off to start on winter pajamas for next year. I bought 4 large trash bags full of boys clothes in sizes 4-7 for $40.00 total for the grand boys on craigslist. Each bag was full of clothes, mainly name brand. I averaged .30 an item! I also went to a local thrift store that has everything 25% off on Mondays, and got several 0-3 and 3-6 month items for a new grandbaby! This stores' regular prices are very good, and with the discount I was able to get over 70 items- gowns, onsies, sleepers, for $38.00. I also found 2 stainless steel water bottles when I was there and paid .75 each for them. Stainless steel retains temperature much longer than plastic, keeping things hotter in winter and colder in summer. I made blankets and burp clothes using flannel I purchased on a black friday sale. I used a yard for each blanket and made them the full width of the cloth, so they are big enough to last for 2-3 years.

  • Jennifer Furnish March 27, 2018

    Amazing deals!!! So impressed!

  • Jennifer O March 26, 2018

    Took advantage of my free faculty tickets to take a friend to see Phantom of the Opera at the local high school. Such talent!

    Scored on chicken thighs. They were on a weekend sale for $1.19 lb (a good price here). I got to the store about 6pm on Sunday and they were marking the sale packages with $4 off coupons. I scored 4 family packs of chicken thighs for about $2.50 each! Now that I know, I will make a point of popping in late on Sundays from now on.

    I picked up a good quality antique mahogany cabinet for $40. A little sanding and a new coat of stain (I already have some) and it should be a beautiful match for my guestroom and replace both a particleboard nightstand and the decrepit plastic drawer set that was holding my candles.

    I’ve stopped attempting to plan every meal for the week as I tend to get a couple of invitations to meals a week (we have no children and my husband is deployed) and am wasting food. I only made 1 meal this week so far. I have a chicken jalapeno popper casserole I found in the back of the freezer defrosting. I need to do a freezer cleanout. I think I spied some other premade casseroles and soups in the deep depths of the stand-up while looking for butter this week. If I do a couple of weeks of eating pre-mades/ leftovers from the freezer I will have a better freezer and budget!

    A couple of summer dresses I bought on sale at Zulilly came in. Great fit and quality. I will see if I can get 2 more.

  • Marybeth March 28, 2018

    Gob bless you and your husband. Thank you for his service.

  • Celeste March 26, 2018

    My local Sprouts Market had pineapples for .88 each. I bought five and plan to dehydrate four of them.

    I made granola, crockpot lasagne, Indian dal and rice, guacamole, peach cobbler, and smoothies mostly from what I had in my refrigerator. We shop weekly at the store only buying fresh fruit, vegetables, milk and eggs and largely fill in the food gaps from the pantry or freezer.

    I washed and line-dried the mattress cover on our bed.

    I brown bagged my lunch all week. I bring my knitting with me and get work done during my break rather than running errands. I am using half the amount of gas that when I would run errands on my lunch hour, and I get some knitting done too.

    I stopped at Winco and purchased some inexpensive varieties of beans to expand my experimentation with Indian cooking.

    I got a check for $34.80 for items sold at a consignment shop.

    I've started exercising again in the morning before getting ready for work. I have an old treadmill in the basement and several hand weights, plus a couple of books and magazine articles with different exercises. I'm looking forward to lighter mornings so I can take my routine outside.

  • Allyson March 26, 2018

    I am still working on my accomplishments post, but I wanted to post this here because I know this to be such a supportive community, and that's what I need right now.

    I am dealing with some health concerns and questions right now. I've been dealing with some for over a year, and feel like I keep getting different answers and new challenges, but no real answer to the source of my problems. I have been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease and high cortisol levels (which makes me stressed and emotional on top of not knowing what's going on with my body), but I feel like there's still a piece that's missing. I have another doctor's appointment with my OB this afternoon, who is very thorough, so I'm hoping for some solid answers and a plan forward.

    I share all of this just to ask for you support and prayers. I am 35 and have two lovely little boys, 5 and 2. (I'd love to have a third, but I don't think my health will allow for that option.) I am hoping for answers to this that are things that I can handle, and will allow me to continue being a working mom so that my husband can continue to be the stay at home dad he's so great at being.

    Thank you for such an awesome community! I'll be back later with my post.

  • Lisa March 26, 2018

    Trying to find answers to undiagnosed health issues can be so draining! So sorry Momma! My husband has chronic headaches (for 20+ years, starting at age 15) with no real answers. It's taxing on him (and me) but he just pushes through and has learned how to deal using biofeedback techniques. I think our frugal way of living is actually helpful because it reduces the amount we choose go out and be around people which lessens the triggers of his migraines.

  • Rhonda A. March 26, 2018

    Allyson, I will admit I have not had to go through what you are going through right now. However, I am a special needs parent, which has taught me a lot. So, in response to your comment about "hoping for an answer to your issues is something you can handle", I want to say this...no matter what the outcome is, you can and will find a way to handle whatever is thrown in your direction. You are stronger than you realize...stop doubting yourself, keep a positive attitude and never give up! Until you get solid answers, keep hoping for the best and preparing for the worst. Remeber, even the strongest people still cry sometimes. But after the good cry, they pick themselves up again and keep moving forward the best they can. I wish you all the best in your search for a diagnosis, Allyson. Sending lots of hugs and warm wishes your way.

  • Allyson March 27, 2018

    Thank you all for the prayers and support. My appointment with my OBGYN was wonderful, and she really helped me navigate things and come up with a plan. It was also comforting to hear from her that a third pregnancy might not be off the table and she will help guide me toward healing. She even left a message for me today just to check in. (Not many doctors do this, so I'm truly grateful for her.) I have more tests in front of me in the next few weeks, and appointments with specialists, including my endocrinologist. I'm hopeful this will lead to more answers and healing.

    Thanks everyone for the prayers. I can truly say that I am feeling better and really think that I felt your prayers yesterday, as I was much calmer last evening than I've been in a while and slept well for the first night in ages.

    As for frugal accomplishments, we're moving forward with our plans for a new house! The realtor will be around next week to take pictures, etc. so we're in serious clean out mode. We'll be moving extra furniture to my mom's house (to save on a storage unit for now), and we're sending as much to Goodwill and posting on Craigslist as possible. The workers will be around the end of the week to complete the carpentry work that needs to be done, and we should be having trees trimmed soon too.

    Here are the rest of our accomplishments for the week. Thank those of you who popped in last week!

    Thanks again for such a wonderfully supportive community!

  • ellie's friend from Canada March 28, 2018

    definitely see an endocrinologist. I will keep you in my prayers, hoping for answers and an ailment that is fixable. Ann

  • Jo March 26, 2018

    Allyson, I'm not a doctor, but three people in my living family have autoimmune diseases as did three more of the older generation which is now passed on, that we know of so far anyway, plus 2 more have a very rare inherited condition that mimics other conditions. I understand you about finding that mysterious answer to health issues. My advice to you is DON'T GIVE UP. It's hard and expensive to go from doctor to doctor, but it's worth it. Consider an endocrinologist, if you haven't already, and a functional medical doctor, who should look for underlying causes instead of treating symptoms. If there is a good teaching hospital in your area, consider their health program. It took a specialist at a Big-Name Children's Hospital, after 2 and a half long years of wrong answers and many doctors, to find out what was wrong with my granddaughter, which was not autoimmune but was an endocrine system issue. It took me over 30 years to get my own autoimmune disease diagnosed, proven and treated. Best of luck to you, and many prayers.

  • Margie from Toronto March 26, 2018

    I caught up on all the laundry this week so had full loads and only used the dryer for the sheets & towels. I use the laundry room in my building and pay for each load of washing & drying so using my drying rack has saved me at least $6 this week.

    I have continued to use up food from the freezer and pantry and I am pleasantly surprised to see how much I have been able to stretch the fish and seafood bought for meals during Lent. I have bought no meat during Lent but had a quick check of what I still have in the freezer - combined with what I will still have left of the seafood I don't anticipate buying any additional proteins until the middle of April.

    I used a lot of egg whites while baking last week and have had a tendency to put the leftover yolks into the fridge and then forget about them. This time I used up all the egg yolks (combined each time with a whole egg) for two really yummy scrambled egg meals.

    I've been much more diligent about checking my online grocery offers and combining those with what is on sale each week. I find now that I figure out those combinations first to get the most points possible and then work meals around those purchases. A lot of fruit & vegetables, plus items that I use regularly are always included so it's not as though I'm buying a lot of processed or junk food. This past week's items included Olive Oil, butter, frozen veg, potatoes, onions, apples, mushrooms and rye bread so I did well.

    I have also finished filling out the paperwork for what we call the Old Age Pension here in Canada. I will be 65 in September so become eligible at that time. If you have worked you would have also contributed to the Canada Pension Plan and receive a monthly amount dependent upon what you earned and what you contributed to the plan during your working life. I have been collecting this since being forced into an early retirement but rules have changed recently so when I do go back to part-time work i can once again contribute to this plan and that will be taken into account. These two pensions often make up the bulk of what people get in retirement but I am lucky to also have two very small company pensions. But it will still be a frugal retirement (no round the world trips I'm afraid :-) as there are some debts to finish paying off ) so I am always appreciative of what I learn here from Brandy and from all of you who comment. Which reminds me - I haven't seen anything from "Ellie's Friend in Canada" for a while now - does anyone know how she is?

  • Cate April 01, 2018

    She commented a couple of people above you.

  • Mrs. Picky Pincher March 26, 2018

    That is so sweet about the repairman! I always say that you can save a lot of money by simply being kind to people. :)

    This week:

    1. I was oh-so frugal today! I had a doc appointment and nearly paid for a car wash on the way home (the trees are putting off ugly green pollen and our car looked so bad). Instead of shelling out the $7, I spent 15 minutes this morning hosing down the car. It doesn't look perfect, but it's NOT covered in pollen, which is an improvement. :)

    2. I found out deer have been hoofing around and eating our garden/yard. I'm looking into some frugal alternatives to keep them from eating all of our food. I'm thinking of getting Deer B Gone spray, but we may have to cover our garden in nets.

    3. I didn't have to pay a copay at the doctor's office. Woohoo!

    4. My dad was over last weekend. I admit we ate out a lot because of food preferences/allergies, but I did manage to save some money by cooking waffles for everyone on Sunday morning. It's about small wins sometimes, hahaha.

    5. We had to get our A/C repaired last Thursday and it cost nearly $700. We did cut the price down from $1,000 by refusing a dubious "upgrade" option, so I'll call that a "savings."

  • Annaliese Turner March 26, 2018

    Those leeks are huge! Can't wait to hear what you will do with them. Here's my frugal list of last week:
    - Someone brought in loads of bread for a nearby restaurant and left them on the "free" table at work. I took some and made a large batch of French bread and put 3 loaves in the freezer.
    -Gifted: 2 qts of cream of chicken mushroom soup from Reality (it's a hit with the kids), 2 oranges, 3 apples, a large bag of limes, orange peels and collard greens (to dehydrate to make more powder). DGP gave the boys some spaghetti and mac &cheese to bring home from dinner one night while I was at work. Ate it the next day.
    -Brought 60 eggs for $5.18.
    -Freebies at store with coupons= 8 candy bars, a container of cherry tomatoes, make-up (foundation and eye shadow), 1 container of yogurt.
    -Used apps to get rebates on groceries.
    Transferred $20 from Ibotta to Paypal account.
    -Sold 2 things on Ebay.
    -We refuse to get new phones and opted for getting the new batteries instead. I got mine a few weeks ago but DH finally came in this past week. When he took it in, accidently the screen was broke and they gave him the option of a new phone or replacing the old one and the battery fee for free- well you can guess what he went for- $30.00 free!!
    -Received some inheritance money and put it into savings.
    -Made chex mix, pizza, chicken fingers with fries, and brownies all from ingredients in pantry and freezer for watching the bball games.
    - DS was gifted some underwear which were badly needed and now I can hold off on that expense for when they go on sale.-
    - Scheduled for more hours at work due to we are going into the busy soccer season and World Cup is this summer.
    -Received high value coupons in mail from being a loyal customer to Kroger
    - The 5 lb box of veggies I get every other week was 50% off this time due to I contacted them to say the greens in the previous box had already started to go bad when I opened it.
    Everyone have a blessed week and Happy Easter!!

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