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Frugal Accomplishments For the Last Week of January

Chocolate Crepe Cake The Prudent Homemaker

A stack of chocolate crepes for a birthday breakfast


I sowed seeds for beets, arugula, spinach, larkspur, and New Zealand Spinach. 

I cut rosemary, Swiss chard, beet greens, arugula, and chocolate mint (pictured above) from the garden. 

We received more rain, which meant I didn't have to turn on the sprinklers. I used rainwater I collected in buckets to water potted plants.

I cooked a large pot of beans in the crockpot and used them to make pasta e fagioli and white bean dip.

I practiced my French by watching videos in French on You Tube, using Duolingo, using a French/English dictionary, and reading French learning blogs.

We went to the library. I checked out some magazines, a movie (one we've seen before, but it's in Frech, and I want to listen again) and the children got some books.

What did you do to save money and find joy this past week?


Note: For the chocolate crepes, I added 1/2 cup of cocoa powder to my regular crepes recipe.

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  • Mandy January 28, 2017

    We ate all meals at home
    I kept the heat 2 degrees lower than I normally have it set at
    Used up leftovers
    stayed home when not working except one grocery shopping trip
    I cancelleld Hulu because we didn't watch it
    Have a great week!

  • Sherry January 28, 2017

    Cannot wait to try these 2 recipes!!!! Love your blog. So inspiring :)

  • matty January 28, 2017

    I really enjoy your blog. I just discovered you a few weeks ago and have gone through the archives several nights before going to bed! ;)

    My frugal week:

    Combined trips so I only had to leave the house four times this week -- including going to work two days.
    Cooked from the pantry and from our home canned goods. Only $1.79 spent at the grocery and that was on milk.
    Baked a cake, cookies, sandwich bread, and English muffins all from scratch.
    Mended my Mister's three pairs of jeans!
    Cut firewood off our farm.
    Recycled boxes, cut to the right depth, for kitchen drawer organization.
    Repaired a lamp.
    Cleaned my car and checked all fluid levels (preventative, but saves money!).
    Collected scrap lumber from a rental remodel to burn in our water stove.
    Saved receipt from Sheetz gas to use for a free coffee on my way to work next week.
    Packed snacks for our errand day to avoid eating out.
    Deadheaded and fertilized over wintered geraniums - which will save money in the spring; they are four years old and still going strong!
    Shopped clearance and got three pairs of leggings for less than $9.

    And, to bring me joy, drove along the river on my way to do errands so I could see the sunlight on the water and admire the Canada geese that stay over the winter in our area.

  • Mary Ellen January 29, 2017

    Matty, are you in PA? There are a lot of Sheetz stations here. Mary Ellen

  • Lisa January 29, 2017

    I love Brandy's blog, too! I regularly go back through the archives.

    Come for a visit at my blog

  • K January 28, 2017

    Those crepes look delicious! I keep forgetting to try making crepes, which is sad because they are quite delicious!

    My frugal accomplishments for the week- the individual savings are small, but many small changes can make a great difference!

    * I bought some spinach seeds for 9c a packet. I debated getting other seeds too at that price, but I have limited growing space on my patio so I decided not to.

    * I made a large pot of bacon, bean, and potato soup. I only used 6 slices for the whole 5qt pot! I got the recipe from BudgetBytes. I also baked bread to go with the soup.

    * I found a lone bag of frozen peas buried in the freezer, which means that's one less bag I'll need to buy for next month's groceries.

    * I finalized the meal plan and shopping list for February- total budget for the month is $85, and the shopping list is under $80 so far.

    * I did laundry at my mom's house while helping her clean and run errands. Both of us benefit from this arrangement- I don't have to pay $2.50 per load of laundry and she gets help around the house!

    * I've made good progress on collecting all of my favorite recipes into one google document, which has helped inspire me with meal planning.

    I've also been working on a pet-project of sorts, where I've been working on a meal plan for 1 person for $20 per week, assuming no garden and minimal bulk buying. It's not quite realistic to how many of us on a budget shop, but in some other online circles that I frequent, it may be very helpful for people.

    I hope you're doing well, Brandy! I cannot wait until I'm able to start my seeds for my garden :D

  • Jlynn January 29, 2017

    I could use that 1 person $20/week meal pln

  • Susan January 31, 2017

    I saw this $20/week budget. Hope you enjoy it.

  • Susan January 31, 2017

    Sorry, I don't think the link posted.
    $20/week food budget.

  • Lisa January 29, 2017

    That Bacon, Bean and Potato soup sounds so good. I book marked the recipe. Thanks for sharing.

    Come see me:

  • Rachel H January 30, 2017

    How many people do you feed for $85 a month? Where do you live? Location has a lot to do with grocery prices.

  • Athanasia February 01, 2017

    Did she answer yet? But it sounds to me like just one person as she has a budget of 20.00 per week for one person. That would be my guess.

  • Rachel H February 02, 2017

    Maybe so. I try hard, but my husband has to have meat each day! If we gardened like Brandy, we could save at least in the produce department.

  • Athanasia February 02, 2017

    Rachel, my husband grew up in that type of family but we gradually cut down . My family grew up with the MORE WITH LESS cookbook, DIET FOR A SMALL PLANET, LAUREL'S KITCHEN....My mother has always had an interest in more low-on-the-food chain- eating as she calls it. I always continued that with my family. Two of my girls are vegetarian. My oldest son is married to an Hawaiian-born woman whose parents are from China. She cooks meat and seafood almost like an accessory to the vegetables and starches. At least half our meals are meatless or very low in meat. Your husband could still have meat, maybe just less? Good luck!

  • Mariana January 28, 2017

    The crapes cake is my favorite cake :) especially with green tea mousse in between layers.
    I had a busy week at work but still managed to do all the cooking. Had three free meals at work as well. That helped!

    My weekly update is up as well:

  • http://Erika January 28, 2017

    It was a stressful week around here, but we got through it. Gorgeous crepes by the way :).

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

  • TerriC January 28, 2017

    Oh Yum! Lucky birthday recipient! I had a fairly good week here in my home.

  • Gabrielle January 28, 2017

    Oooh I love Crepes cake!
    I'm starting to get my gardening supplies in order and checking the viability of seeds stored from other years. I need to order more heated seed starting mats but I'm holding off for now. I suppose I shouldn't delay it much longer.

    In a happy note, we got our taxes organized and mailed off to the accountant in record time (we own rental property and so we use an accountant). This is the earliest we have accomplished this because Army retirees have their statements completed first so it is much quicker than when we were on Active Duty.

    My husband has almost completed the new chicken coop he made for my birthday and was able to reuse the solar door from our previous coop. We have eaten all meals at home and i make almost everything from scratch.

    Of much local excitement, New Jersey (I'm only 20 minutes from the NJ border) is the first state to offer baby boxes (a terrific public health initiative) to expectant mothers. You can read about it here: Have a good week everyone!

  • Cindi January 29, 2017

    I saw on the news about those baby boxes -- such a great idea!

  • Pat January 28, 2017

    Those chocolate crepes look yummy!
    My week just kept chugging along. I am done shopping for January and my total is $34. I will be depositing $300 in our emergency fund and that brings me great joy!!
    My list for restocking the pantry is quite long but I will wait for sale prices. Our immediate needs are tp and sliced cheese.
    We ate all meals at home and I was successful in rolling over parts of one meal into another. I doubled the chili portion of my chili mac recipe and used part of the chili for chili dogs later in the week. We also had beef and gravy last night and I used the leftover meat and gravy for vegetable beef soup using onions, celery, carrots, corn and peas from the freezer.
    I made a batch of banana muffins and a double batch of pumpkin chocolate chip muffins.
    I took a dozen of the pumpkin muffins when I babysat my grandchildren and it made me happy to see their faces light up when they saw them. They are 5 and 1 and we had a great evening playing and reading books!
    Have a great week everyone!!

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