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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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  • Heidi Louise March 28, 2018

    I suspect many of you do not have satellite television, yet the comment about learning Swedish prompted me to write. When I was looking for ways to cut my bill, I noticed that Dish Network has international language channel packages, (though not Swedish). Subscribing to one for a month would be a form of immersion in the language and culture. YouTube might have some good programs as well, just to hear the voices. Have a great trip!

  • Athanasia March 29, 2018

    Elisa, I hope you have a lovely trip to Sweden. I have heard that Scandinavian countries have a very high percentage of English speakers. But it is always good for the brain to learn another language, so good luck.

  • ElisaB March 30, 2018

    Thank you for your ideas on this, Heidi Louise and Athanasia. Yes, I did read that English is frequently spoken except not so much in the smaller villages. My husband's cousins do speak English quite fluently. We will be heading off the beaten path to find some of the places our ancestors came from. I think I am going to make up some index cards for the basics.

  • Lisa from Maine March 26, 2018

    Last week was a tough week for us as I lost my job. I was a stay at home mom for 12 years prior to this job so I know we can do it but my income was helpful in upgrading several things around the house that needed to be done. Plus my husband's job is tough and he is starting to really feel his age. He also suffers from anxiety so this situation is not helping much. My community is rural and small so I just can't hop into another job easily. So we'll see how that goes. Once I stopped working we heated the house with wood all day until I went to bed (while working I would only use wood heat when I came home after 5PM.)
    Did not need to drive as much so I saved on gas then used the remainder of a gc to put gas in the car. My kids are happy that they get to eat about 2 hours earlier at night. I gave one of my sons a haircut.

  • Lisa, I am sorry to hear that you lost your job.

    I hope you have lots of wood stored, and that you can find new ways for saving money now that you are at home again. Your gas will hopefully last much longer now that you are home more, too,

  • Lisa from Maine March 27, 2018

    Thank you Brandy for your kind words. I have enough wood for us to burn until May so we are all set on that. It still gets down to the upper teens at night but has been getting to around 45 degrees in the afternoon--at least for this week--so I have let the wood boiler die down after lunch and do not restart it until supper. We've been a one income family before so I know we can do it again.

  • Marybeth March 28, 2018

    Sorry to hear about your job loss. We are all here to help you with great ideas and lots of support.

  • Ellie's friend from Canada March 28, 2018


    Sorry to hear about your job loss. You might google P.E.O. International as they have grants for women who need to go back to school for retraining,in case you need that. just a thought...

  • Athanasia March 29, 2018

    Lisa, I am sorry to hear of your job loss. I pray your husband's anxiety level stays down.

  • Becky March 27, 2018

    My week was much different than normal. I was sick all week and ended up down at the doctor's office on Friday afternoon. I felt that I was on the mend, but needed a prescription renewed and they insisted I come in. Although it turned out that I had the influenza, I was no longer contagious and was free to go to my friend's house as planned. I was thankful that we have excellent insurance.

    During the week, I stayed home the entire time. While it did save gas, I lost much more than the price of gas in missed wages from my job.

    That delayed my husband and I a little bit. We were heading out of town together, just the 2 of us, to visit friends who live about 8 hours away. The girls all had other things to do for a few days, and we seized the opportunity. We had a wonderful trip, which I blogged about: https://beckyathome.wordpress.com/2018/03/27/a-walk-on-the-wild-side-of-oregon-that-is-march-2018/

    We returned last evening. I went to the store and got a lot of groceries. I have a big cooking day planned today. A young friend is coming over to cook with me. The plan is to make lots of gluten-free items as she has been recently diagnosed with intolerance to gluten. We will make several recipes, and there should be plenty for me to freeze, eat, and for her to take home. I've got several things for her to choose from, and once she gets here I'll let her choose what looks good to her. I hope to build my stock of frozen muffins, and make some bar cookies to freeze for Easter.

    My extended family is gone on vacation, and will be returning on Saturday night, so will all come here Sunday for Easter. I will get as much done ahead of time as possible so the day is easy. Here is my challenge: I can't eat gluten. Neither can my sister, mother, cousin and daughter. That's the easy part. I have a gluten-free, dairy-free, egg=free cousin coming (whom we are delighted to see as she is a missionary in Nicaragua), my mother has been taken off dairy by the doctor, and my daughter is extremely allergic to a ton of things, leaving her with cooked veggies and meat for the most part, but she can't have beef. Another daughter is a vegetarian. So, I have several recipes to try, am loaded up with things like egg-replacer from the health food store, and I'm on a mission. I will cook a lot of veggies in various ways, a couple of meats (including pulling out turkey meat from the turkey I cooked and froze last week), and try to bake some items today and freeze them. I'm excited. I like a good challenge. I'm quite sure it will be an accomplishment. After shopping last night, I am also quite sure it's not really going to end up being a FRUGAL accomplishment! But, at least everyone will have something they can eat. And, my aunt brought over a huge basket of candy before she left, so that's there for the kids, and my mom stuffed some money in my pocket before she left, so that helps, too! And, they all feel so guilty for leaving me with this job (which I don't mind at all because I love to cook) that I am pretty sure they will do all the dishes. Win-win! It should be a fun day:)

  • Cheryl March 28, 2018

    Wow Becky, you do have a challenge ahead of you. I wish you luck. I enjoyed reading your post about your visit to Eastern Oregon. Have a happy Easter.

  • Becky March 28, 2018

    Thank you! It was a fun trip:). Of course, it's fun to go somewhere, but to go with JUST my husband...amazing!! Since we have 8 adopted children, and have had them for a span of 32 years (it's how we have a 37-year-old daughter when we are only mid-50's), with 3 still living at home, it's a rare privilege indeed:)

  • Marybeth March 28, 2018

    That is definitely a challenge. I thought I had a lot to work around. Hubby is allergic to dairy, I can't have sodium, my oldest is a vegetarian and my youngest has severe reflux.

  • Becky March 28, 2018

    I do love a challenge and I love to cook, so.....bring it on!

  • Candy Brisendine March 27, 2018

    Flannel kleenex? Who knew? I feel like I'm the last person to learn such a thing exists but now I have a use for worn out flannel sheets. Thanks!

  • Jennifer@thefrugaldribble March 27, 2018

    I am just continuing to do a lot of little things to add up to big differences. My blog keeps me more accountable. Those leeks are beautiful!

  • PJGT March 27, 2018

    Break is this week and I'm just happy to be home. Other than Easter dinner at my inlaws, it is just doctor checkups. Today I established care with a doctor as I has been seeing a PA. She was great, but I am getting older; however I am blessed to not have any health issues. The new doctor seems quite thorough and the visit is fully covered. My dental cleaning was fully covered as well and no cavities or problems. Next Monday my daughter and I are squeezing in 5 appointments between the two of us. All preventive and all free! My DS had a dental cleaning and has never had a cavity. He will have to have his two wisdom teeth extracted. Extractions should be fully covered on my insurance. I'll check this week.

    I found a couple pennies, received a dozen eggs, and saw a write-your-own spiral recipe book up for grabs on the faculty room table and brought it home. Looks very useful.

    I had to have my pearls restrung last fall so they wouldn't break and took them back to the jeweler as they were "stretching" and no longer even. The jeweler will make it right at no cost.

    I did minimal shopping and went to our small town grocery store knowing I needed lettuce and apples. Much to my delight, they were both BOGO! In addition, I also found peanuts on clearance for 87 cents. I'm not sure why they were on discount, but I bought all 12 containers.

    Our local thrift store had brand new shoe laces for a quarter so I bought some for future use. I also found new with tags cloth diapers for 2.00 each and, knowing how expensive they are, I bought all 7. Eventually we will have grandchildren. I used cloth and loved them. They worked for us.

    Thus month and next are expected to be real struggles financially. Some days it is more difficult than others to keep at it, so I truly do appreciate the support I find here!

    Happy spring, frugalers!

  • Kara March 27, 2018

    My husband took our duaghter’s car to Auto Zone when the check engine light came on, instead of taking it to the mechanic. They run a diagnostic test for free. It turns out it was a simple problem, my husband bought the part and replaced it himself.
    I rode my bike to do errands in town.
    I bought 20# of potatoes for $0.19/lb. I got rain checks for 2 other sale items that were sold out.
    I sewed a patch on the knee of my husband’s jeans.
    We replaced a trim board on our shed. The old one was rotten. We priced wood at Home Depot (after thoroughly looking through what we already had). I nice board was $6, but a fence board of the same size was only $2. We bought that. It was sanded and put up. We painted it and the rest of the trim with exterior paint samples my mother had bought when she was choosing a house color. All the samples were shades of off white. One sample pot was not enough, so we mixed 2 together before starting the trim. That way we didn’t run out of one and have a slight color change part way through.
    It’s been a nice get-things-done sort of week.

  • Ellie's friend from Canada March 28, 2018

    the cell phone company sent me a bill for $400 as a device fee for my new phone. It was very complicated but after a half hour on the phone, the agent gave me a credit for the whole bill. I find patience and courtesy on the phone really pay off. As I am just out of the hospital, it was a shock to get the bill. I incurred a lot of expenses while in the hospital. I am going bankrupt paying for snow shovelling which I had been doing myself. And to have someone check the house so the insurance is valid. Still, I have been counting my blessings, among which have been great friends.

  • Margie from Toronto March 29, 2018

    So sorry to hear that you've been in hospital - I wondered where you had gone and asked on here if anyone knew what had happened.
    Since you've been ill does you city not offer someone to do the shovelling? If you are elderly or disable here there is a way to register with the city (so you don't get fined). It must have been very worrying.
    I hope things get better for you soon. Take care.

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