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Last Week's Frugal Accomplishments

Thai Basil Seedlings The Prudent Homemaker 

I pulled the Thai basil plants (above) from the grass that had grown on their own. I'll replant them in the garden this week.

I harvested colander of tiny tomatoes, 4 1/2 butternut squash (2 decent-sized ones, 2 tiny ones, and half a tiny one; the other half was bug eaten), green onions, garlic chives, basil, and Swiss chard from the garden.

My eldest daughter applied for four scholarships.

My eldest son took a free ACT prep class.

I mended a sandal.

I added water to my lotion bottle to get out the remaining lotion. It yielded me a week's worth of lotion.

We had a surprisingly humid week. I was able to collect several gallons of water each day from the air conditioner drip, which I used to water potted plants in the garden.  On Thursday night we got a few minutes of rain, during which I went out and moved buckets to catch the rain. It rained a bit on Friday morning as well, so I was able to collect more rainwater in buckets and turn off the sprinklers and drip irrigation for the day (it's always nice when it rains on my assigned watering day!)

My husband and I enjoyed a date out using a gift card that we were given.


What did you do to save money last week? Did you try something new?



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  • Megan Z. September 11, 2017

    I got several books from the library. I also checked out a few e-books. I won a giveaway on Goodreads so have the latest Flavia De Luce book to read.

    I pulled a lot of vines out of the garden but gathered all the green tomatoes first. I am harvesting my 2nd crop of raspberries although I eat most of them right away. I took a batch of basil and blanched and froze it. I have been gathering a bit at a time and will make pesto later in the year. I planted carrots so will hopefully harvest them before winter hits.

    I am going on a trip later this week plus have a Gospel Meeting at church so made big pots of food (stirfry for me, chili for my husband) so we don't have to worry about food this week. It is nice to not have to prepare food after working.

    I'm waiting for now Tropical Storm Irma to hit Georgia. It looks like we will get some rain and heavy wind but not a lot of damage. I'm more concerned about Jacksonville as they are dealing with a lot of flooding. My grandma lost power and will probably be without it for awhile but everyone is safe. Hope everyone else stays safe this week.

  • Becky @ Becky's Place September 11, 2017

    I love Alan Bradley's Flavia De Luce books! What a fun win! I see he has a new one that should come out in January 2018.

  • Anna September 11, 2017

    This,week was a very frugal week for me even though I spent money. My husband needs a 12 valve cummins motor for one of our ranch pickups they normally cost about 2000 dollars for one that's rebuilt or and at least 600 dollars for one needing to be rebuilt. On Saturday I attended an auction because they advertised cummins motors. I was able to get an engine for a hundred dollars, a sand blaster cabinet for 1 dollar, an entire gas welder set up including tanks for 200 with lots of accessories and a laundry sink my sweet friend needed for 3 dollars. I feel very blessed by God. Other frugal things were making all our meals from scratch. Bringing h ok me a frinds cracked heirloom watermelons to make watermelon mollassis, finding ways to reuse existing items. We finally settled my husband's accident case for less than we hoped and I am taking the auction as a sign that God will stretch our funds and multiply them as,needed.

  • jen goodwin September 11, 2017

    Anna, What is watermelon molasses? I've never heard of it. Thanks, jen

  • Mo September 11, 2017
  • Juls Owings September 12, 2017

    Jen here is a recipe. http://www.motherearthnews.com/real-food/make-your-own-watermelon-syrup-zmaz77jazgoe
    molasses is a bit thicker than syrup so you would just cook it down more.

  • Beulah September 12, 2017

    I've heard of watermelon rind pickles and watermelon jelly. The syrup is new to me. I might have to give this a go as well. Watermelons are on sale for a crazy low price here at the moment.

  • Laura Cullen September 11, 2017

    WOW!! Way to score on the auction deals! =)

  • I'm going to use your water in the lotion trick! ThAnks for the tip. We are harvesting the garden here. You can read my frugal accomplishments here http://www.vickieskitchenandgarden.com/2017/09/my-frugal-ways-this-past-week-91017.html

  • Doris September 11, 2017

    I put my SOS pads in a bag in the freezer if they're still a bit good. I don't use as many.

  • http://Vickie@Vickies Kitchen And Garden September 11, 2017

    I've heard that as well...good tip Doris!

  • Ellie's friend from Canada September 11, 2017

    Oh I really like that tip! Thanks

  • Pbkmaine September 12, 2017

    I cut mine in quarters. I have heard it is good for the scissors, too.

  • momsav September 12, 2017

    I sent my husband to the dollar tree for pads. He came back with two boxes of pads that were about 1/4 the size of the regular ones. Very nice!

  • Laurie in central NC September 11, 2017

    Your basil looks happy. I've been gathering what I can of ours, which is rapidly turning brown and dropping leaves. Ours does that every year, and I've never been sure if it's the heat & dry or dwindling daylight. As pretty as yours is, I'm leaning towards the daylight theory. I just gathered jars for canning; just have to decide if eggplant or squash are first up. We're waiting on the effects of Irma, and have done all our needed prep. So far, just some sprinkles. We don't expect it to be too bad here. Possibly 40 mph winds, and rain. I'm happy to be joining in: https://abelabodycare.blogspot.com/2017/09/the-royal-treatment-frugal.html

  • Rhonda A. September 11, 2017

    I was wondering if your area was experiencing any weather connected to the hurricanes south of you. Do you think the humidity and rain were because of that, Brandy? Or was it just coincidence. Good luck to both your eldest children!

    Life has been pretty hectic around our house, but we're surviving so far. It could be worse! At least we are not being evacuated from our home or panicking over the safety of loved ones. I sincerely hope all those who regularly comment here and their families are all safe. Frugal accomplishment for this week included:
    *Meals made at home included bacon & cheese savoury bread pudding (new recipe, see below)with corn-on-the-cob, chicken fingers with white rice and corn, stuffed chicken breast with baked potato and green beans/spaghetti with meat sauce, make-your-own pizzas, and BBQ's chicken breasts with mashed potatoes and carrots.
    *I decided to try a new meal idea this week by making a savoury bread pudding. I used some leftover bacon, Havarti with jalapeno cheese from the freezer, bread crust ends I collected in the freezer (that would otherwise get thrown out), inexpensive eggs, powdered milk from my pantry and a few other simple pantry ingredients to create the inexpensive dish (modified from this recipe: http://nectarandlight.typepad.com/nectar/2011/12/one-of-the-reasons-i-started-this-blog-was-to-document-in-words-and-photographs-our-jounrey-to-eating-responsibly-we-started.html). DD refused to give it a chance, just because it was a new food (nothing in it she won't eat), husband seemed to like it and my mom was fine with it. I really enjoyed it, as it tasted a lot like cheesy garlic bread. It made a lot, however. I've been eating it for breakfast most mornings and there's still quite a bit left. If I make it again, I will cut the recipe size in half!
    *School started back this week. As in previous years, I will not be buying "lunch box" snacks like granola bars, cookies, etc. Instead I will be baking a batch of lunch treats each week. DD requested choco-scotch clusters this time as her school lunch treat. These have peanut butter in them and very sugary. Since high school is not a "nut free" environment, like the elementary schools are here in Ontario, we indulged her request for the first week. We had all the ingredients on hand in the pantry.
    *Cut up and dehydrated another celery bunch (bought for $0.77) to add to the jar I processed a few weeks ago. I tried it in a soup recently and was very pleased with how well it worked. Celery prices are relatively low right now as the harvest is coming in for the season, but it does skyrocket to around $2/bunch in winter. Good time to add this to my pantry staples. I also cut the stalk end to in 4 and added it to my frozen veggie scraps bag for making soup stock later.
    *Somehow the freezer door was left slightly open one night and not discovered until the next morning. Most of the freezer was still frozen, but a bunch of packaged of breakfast sausages were thawed enough to be a concern for refreezing, but still cold enough that they were not spoiled. So, I pulled all of them out, cooked up about 6 packages of sausage, left some out to use for breakfast this week, then repackaged the rest of the cooked sausage to freeze again. Saved the meat...I feel like a hero!
    *We took DD to the psychiatrist this week. As I've said before, she is on the autism spectrum, so she doesn't always understand social rules. As a teenager, she also feels rules are stupid. So, while in the appointment, DD kept playing on her cell phone, despite us repeatedly telling her to put it away. The Dr, in an attempt to find her something else to do, looked around for a fidget toy as a replacement for the phone. When one wasn't handy, she turned to DD and asked her "Is there anything on my desk that you'd like to play with?". Without missing a beat, DD gave her a teenager type look and said "The computer?". Yeah, she gets her quick wit from her father. Still laughing 3 days later. I've been saying for years that I need to write a book about my daughter...proceeds from sales could very well support my retirement fund!
    *DD did survive the first week of high school, with only minor issues to deal with (no meltdowns..whoohooo!!!!). She even hooked up with a couple kids and ended up going to the movies with them on the weekend. They wanted to see Stephen King's "IT". My husband also wanted to see the movie. We have a card which allows a "support person" to get in for free, since my daughter is on the Autism spectrum. So he volunteered to the chauffeur. Both kids lived very close by, which thankfully saved on gas costs. They all seemed to enjoy the movie. I will happily watch the movie here at home later, where my screams can be muffled by my protective blanket barrier.
    *Worked the "Applefest" special event at the pioneer village this weekend. NEVER seen line ups like that before at our village. I think every employee and volunteer who worked the event went home exhausted and/or shell shocked. I am now done work until mid-November, with the exception of 1 more day event on September 24th (our Canada 150th celebration and the museums 50th anniversary). Thankful for the break as I have a lot of things I need to do at home now!

    This week I will be starting to work on my long list of things that need to be done at home. Lots of jam making in my future. At least the temperatures are nice and cool! Have a great week, everyone.:D

  • Brandy @ The Prudent Homemaker September 11, 2017

    Rhonda, Miami Florida is 2562 miles southeast (mostly east) of here.

    The Jet Stream goes from west to east, and our weather and storms come from the west (and southwest) of us.

    Storms in the Atlantic do not reach here. The winds blow from the west and south west, and the storms come from the Pacific.

    We have seen more rain this year here than normal, and I'm so grateful for it! I was able to see that rain was predicted, but I couldn't see much more about it, as weather.com is just full of hurricane stories. They're not even talking about the fires burning across the northwest; I have to read about that elsewhere. So there wasn't anything that I could see about this storm coming. It was so nice, though!

  • Rhonda A. September 12, 2017

    The cloud cover that we had yesterday in southern Ontario were the outer edges of hurricane Irma. We are no where near Florida, but it is pretty much straight south of us. I was wondering if the hurricane from Texas stretched up your direction, but I guess not. Regardless, I'm glad you had rain!;)

  • Fiona Chain September 12, 2017

    Hi Rhonda, thanks for the great savoury bread pudding recipe, I have actually been looking for one for a while to use up bread ends too, thanks again,

  • Rhonda A. September 12, 2017

    Fiona, I found a number of different savoury bread pudding recipes on Pinterest (searched savoury bread pudding). There were lots of variations with different meat, cheese, and/or veggies mixed in with the egg and bread mixture. You can easily create a delicious dish using what you have on hand, including veggies grown in your own garden. After making it, I'm now realizing this dish is kind of like making soup. Once you know the basics, you can easily mix and match whatever you want!

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