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Last Week's Frugal Accomplishments

Fall Zinnia Arrangement The Prudent Homemaker

This post contains affiliate links.

I cut and dried lots of basil from the garden.

I printed free school worksheets from Education.com (they have a limit of 10 free worksheets each month).

I planted seeds in the garden for artichokes, Swiss chard, and parsley.

I covered my artichoke seedlings from a previous week that had come up with small canning jars, to keep the bugs from eating them and to create a mini-greenhouse, allowing them to grow faster larger.

I made a triple batch of laundry soap.

I experimented making a few loaves of pear bread, using quarts of home-canned pears that have been on the shelves for a few years. I ground whole wheat into flour in our grinder and used that in the recipes. The first two loaves were fine, but lacked excitement (we ate them anyway). I'll keep trying some variations until we find something we really enjoy, as we have a number of older jars of home-canned pears that need to be used up.

My brother-in-law was offered a number of free tickets to a show downtown on Tuesday. My husband and I were able to attend. We were even told to park in a certain lot downtown. We saw a parking garage on the way, but our vehicle was too tall to park there. We found the lot that we had been told to park in; it was a small lot and the entrance wasn't even clear. To our surprise, the lot stated that it was free to Nevada residents for 24 hours, provided the driver had a valid id! We did have to walk a distance, but the weather was pleasant and gave us a chance to talk. (For those who live in Las Vegas, this lot is east of Planet Hollywood, and you enter it from Harmon Ave. There is no noticeable entrance; just a fence with a small entrance and a drive behind it. As you drive to the lot, you will see Bally's employee parking lot is connected to this lot.) We ended our evening by going out to eat using a gift card that we had.

(I know some of you are wondering about the shooting in Las Vegas. We don't live close to downtown and are very rarely there, though as I mentioned we were earlier this past week. You can read about the shooting here--warning about the photos.) 

My husband used barge cement to repair two pairs of children's shoes.

I gave our youngest a haircut. He thinks the trimmers tickle, which makes it a bit tricky, but he was very good about having his hair cut!

My son brought home leftover cookies from a Scout Court of Honor that no one else wanted to take home.

My mom went to a garage sale and blessed us with several items she found: 3 pint jars, brand-new girls' hair elastics (I was just about to go buy some at the dollar store, where they sell them 100 for $1, but this saved me a dollar!), sidewalk chalk, and sewing machine oil.


What did you do to save money last week?



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  • Athanasia October 03, 2017

    Haha I thought too, those are big mice !!

  • momsav October 04, 2017

    I needed this laugh! I read it twice and laughed twice as hard the second time!

  • Juls Owings October 06, 2017

    well both.. the mice that ate the sweet potato the size of Hubby's shoe was smaller but the guys kills some rats in the buildings around the house that were the size of a possum which is bigger than Hubby's shoe. A wild cat was hanging around awhile is now gone so I would say so are the rats and mice. Soybeans and corn is coming out of the fields now, I will have to put poison in certain places in the house to keep them out of my pantry.

  • Jeannie October 07, 2017

    I went to jul's blog and found a picture of the sweet potato sitting beside her husband's big shoe. She was not exaggerating! It isn't that I didn't believe her and demanded proof, I am just too nosey for my own good.


    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry.Blogspot.com

  • Marcia R. October 04, 2017

    That is a shame. We have always used a chicken wire fence around our garden, but we've seen only raccoons and rabbits and smaller rodents. Especially important when just planted and a tender size. Less successful since our next door neighbors have adopted a feral cat colony--but the town has a capture, vaccinate, neuter and release program so at least they have stopped having kittens. I love cats but I wonder who gets these (5 or 6) when those neighbors move out, which they do intend to do. These cats can easily jump the chicken wire fence, which we have now removed. The cats sleep in the garden often, so nothing comes up in those spots. I work around them, and I'm down sizing the garden anyhow as I get older and more arthritic.

  • Jeannie October 05, 2017

    The cats will catch young raccoons and rabbits which is why you may not have had problems with other pests. Raccoons can become a nightmare because they have hands, not paws and can do all types of mischief. My sister once had one move into her neighborhood. She watched while it unlocked the trash can lid and crawled in. They put a heavy rock on top then it decided to peel the shingles from their roof and move into their attic.

    As I said, I welcome my neighbor's cats. They pay the vet bills, feed them and I get the benefits.

    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry@Blogspot.com

  • Juls Owings October 06, 2017

    coyotes will move in if there are a lot of cats and not much wild life for them... Dealing with that now.

  • Jeannie October 02, 2017

    We use either a 22 long rifle, a 12 gauge shotgun or a crossbow, depending on the critter and only if it is open season. I also have a humane trap which we have used to relocate rabbits far away. In the winter I use hoop houses and keep the vegetables covered. I have a piece of chicken wire fence which is bent in a low arch and sits on the ground. I use it on top of seedlings. I also use black plastic netting, which I HATE, but it will work. Right now something has moved in under my shed, I see the tunnel, but it has avoided the humane trap. It is driving Scooter crazy because he can't stop sniffing the tunnel entrance. I think it is rabbits because of the droppings in the garden.

    It is not easy. Every time I walk into the garden I look for tracks. Being proactive, knowing what is doing the damage, then immediately doing something, is the only answer. A kind and gentle heart won't work, gardening is war!

    This is something horrible that happened to us last year.
    Then it returned.
    Finally, we won.

    And if all else fails, write a story and have a good laugh.

    Mandy, do you know what is getting everything?

    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry.Blogspot.com

  • Erika @ The Make Do Homemaker October 02, 2017

    Glad you got some time off and for free at that (the best kind of time off). It's busy around here. Right now I am just trying to get my act together and get ready for winter :).

    My list for the week can be found here...


  • Melonie K. October 02, 2017

    So sad to wake up to the news from Las Vegas, after just discussing with a friend in Alberta whether her family was safe from the Edmonton attack. Very glad to hear that your home is far from the area and that your night out was much earlier in the week!

    We did a lot of our usual things, but I did get a few things in that saved us extra. My most "exciting" accomplishment was a good grooming of the dog at home. Saved close to $100 between fees and diesel, as I have her nails clipped at the vet and the rest done at a pet store.

    Wishing everyone a good week!


  • Rhonda A. October 02, 2017

    Such sad news about the mass shooting. I'm glad you and your husband were able to enjoy a show without being involved in such a tragedy. I wish those involved had been as fortunate.

    This week, my frugal accomplishments included:
    *Meals made at home this week included shepherds pie (used frozen leftover beef, leftover veggies, plus a few frozen veggies that needed using up), "cracked out" chicken tater tot casserole with green/waxed beans, pasta with choice of topping, stuffed chicken breasts with choice of french fries or sweet potato fries and corn, and taco bake with salad.
    *This week, when we had a medical appointment for DD to attend right before dinner, I made a plan. I decided to buy a rotisserie chicken dinner at a grocery store as our "take out dinner", which is reasonably priced and healthier. Next day DD took the leftover potatoes in her lunch, and I used the leftover chicken to make the "cracked out" chicken tater tot casserole (which DD has been begging me to make again) that night. Take that family!!!:o
    *Made veggie fried rice from leftover white rice for lunch one day. It stretched over 2 lunches.
    *Baked a delicious raspberry cobbler from scratch to use up some crushed raspberry leftover from last weeks jam making session. It stretched over 2 meals.
    *Baked a pan of Chocolate Banana Applesauce Cake to use in DD's lunches this coming week. After packaging up 5 squares, left over cake was up for grabs for the rest of the family.
    *Cooked 2 dozen cobs of corn, cut off the kernels and froze for use in winter.
    *Defrosted and reorganized both freezers. Found a few things we didn't know we had. Pulled a few items to get them used up.
    *Pulled out all the saved poultry bones (turkey and chicken carcasses plus giblets/chicken scraps) and veggie scraps from the freezer (broccoli stems, celery trimmings, carrot peelings, bean scraps, onion skins, etc.) and cooked up a huge stockpot of poultry stock. I love when I can take scraps that would normally be thrown away and make a delicious and highly nutritious food item basically for free!
    *After refrigerating the poultry stock, I skimmed off the fat layer on top. Then I used my brand new pressure canner for the 1st time and canned up 7 quarts of stock! I even used my new tattler lids, which are reusable. Learned a new skill and saved money with my new investments.:D
    *Took advantage of a 40% off sale to buy DD a new 3-in-1 winter jacket, 2 long sleeved t-shirts and 1 sweater in preparation for the fast approaching winter. It was expensive, but necessary.
    *Completed a survey which paid each family member $2, for a total of $8.

    Wishing everyone a safe week.

  • Kandace October 02, 2017

    I couple of years ago I read about making corn broth out of corn cobs. After I cut off the corn for freezing, I put the cobs in a pot, cover with water and add salt, pepper, and a bay leaf and boil for 30-45 minutes, then strain it and freeze it. It makes a nice base for corn chowder or soup. Another way to use up all the parts of food!

  • J October 02, 2017

    This is a fantastic idea!!!

  • terriC October 02, 2017

    There is also a corn cob jelly that can be made from corn cobs....

  • Juls Owings October 02, 2017

    you can also make corn cob syrup and jelly with that "broth"

  • Jeannie October 03, 2017

    Make sure there are no holes in the corn cobs first before you boil them. Once I bought infested cobs and worms boiled out and floated to the top of the water. I GAGGED! I had cut the kernels off of the cobs and had fed them too the family. I was saving the cobs to make jelly. I never told them what happened, probably never will.
    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry.Blogspot.com

  • Rhonda A. October 08, 2017

    I had this problem with the rose hips. I finally got to washing them up to prepare them late this week. While pulling the stems off, I discovered several had small white worms in them. It grossed me out so much that I started to wonder if there were worms in all the rose hips. So I opted to throw them all out and try again next year. At least it was free, so no money wasted!

  • Jamie | Medium Sized Family October 02, 2017

    You got quite a deal on your date night! I'd love to find a parking lot like that in our city. We often have to pay $10 and still hike quite a bit to the venue when we go downtown.

    We're certainly praying for Las Vegas. :(

    Here are the ways we saved this week: https://www.mediumsizedfamily.com/5-ways-weve-saved-money-week-94/

  • Annaliese October 02, 2017

    So glad you are safe and I have heard from my many friends in LV too and they are safe too. (Which we are planning to visit next summer for our 30th wedding anniversary since that's where we met.) Not much went on this past week. We sold a house that belonged to our MIL's husband-who passed last November. That will help in the decision if we get the car fixed or just get a new one. Still am putting up green tomatoes and I find a recipe for a soup. Making it today with the leftovers to freeze for later use. Plus roasting the last of the tomatoes from my garden with bits and pieces of green peppers, onions and herbs from the garden. I am leaving for a trip to San Francisco in the morning so I am going thru the kitchen and gathering up everything to cook and/or freeze to save money when we get back. Hubby is already there working the Oracle Convention and his company is paying for him. We just have to pay for me and I went online and got some really good vouchers to do things thru Groupon to do while he is at work. We will be getting free babysitting for our grown autistic son by his grandparents while we are gone. They are angels!!! They will also keep an eye on our dog too. So we are saving money there. One major thing that we saved money on this week was our swimming pool. We had to get another one for this past season and noticed that the railing and anything steel has started rusting. Hubby got in touch with the company and they are sending out a brand new one when the 2018's rollout and we don't have to send the one outside here back. (I guess there has been a lot of complaints about this year's model.) Freebies this week: milk, eggs, a tea drink and onions from using coupons from the store. Used the eggs to make French toast with 10cent loaf of bread. Happy Fall everyone!!

  • PJGT October 02, 2017

    I used to say that we were seeing the country one conference at a time. Enjoy!

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